first_imgAthletic Bilbao boss Marcelo Bielsa has snubbed two approaches from Chelsea, according to the Daily Mirror.Roman Abramovich is looking for another manager.It is claimed the 56-year-old ex-Argentina manager has dismissed talks with Blues owner Roman Abramovich’s representatives, insisting he does not talk to “people representing other people.”The Sun declare that Abramovich’s reign at Chelsea has cost him £2billion.And a number of papers pick up on interim boss Roberto Di Matteo’s comment on Friday that he has “no friends” at Stamford Bridge.Meanwhile, The Sun say QPR manager Mark Hughes has threatened to ban his players from using Twitter after Federico Macheda was hit with a £15,000 FA fine.On-loan  striker Macheda was found guilty of using homophobic language on the social networking site and recently posted foul-mouthed comments after being dropped by Hughes.Related West London Sport story: Hughes rules out Twitter banThe Independent and Daily Express have interviews with QPR chairman Tony Fernandes, who again states that he will not jump ship if Rangers go down.Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

first_imgIf phrases like “the conservation of conservatism” or “the production of productivity” leave you scratching your head, you may wear off a few hairs thinking about a paper in PNAS1 on the “evolution of evolvability.”  Entitled, “Is evolvability a selectable trait?”, this paper by two scientists at Rice University considers whether the rate of change of evolution can change.  (Pause here to think about that.)  In other words, can the ability of a population of critters to adapt to its environment quickly be selected by natural selection?  Might some critters become sluggish in their ability to change, while others develop flexibility in adapting to changing conditions?  Why is anyone even asking this question?    It’s not that no one has thought about this before, but the idea has been shrugged off by other evolutionists in the past.  How could a population plan ahead to be flexible?  For this reason, the authors seem a little defensive writing this paper:Whether the propensity to evolve, or evolvability, can be an object of Darwinian natural selection is a topic of interest.  Causality would suggest not because of the apparently anticipatory nature of evolvability.  Many within the field of evolutionary biology are uncomfortable with the concept that evolvability is a selectable trait.  A growing body of experimental data, however, would be explained if evolvability were a selectable trait.    Higher organisms cannot evolve, or adapt, by germ-line mutation to an environmental change within their own lifetime.  Does this mean that lineages and individuals cannot be under selection for evolvability?….….Although the use of the term evolvability has only recently come into vogue in the scientific community, investigations into the evolution of adaptation go back several decades.  Prominent from a theoretical perspective are works in population genetics and game theory [see 02/10/2004 headline].  Despite the insights that these studies give as to the origin and maintenance of evolvability, evolution of and selection for evolvability remains a contested issue primarily because of the causality principleSo the burden of proof is on them to show that evolvability evolves.  Their paper is primarily a mathematical model, similar to computer models of evolution (see 07/04/2004 headline).  A model is needed, they say, because of the difficulty of measuring the effect in the wild:Whether evolvability is selectable has been a difficult question to answer, primarily because observations in evolutionary biology tend to be correlative in nature and difficult on which to make mechanistic conclusions.  Therefore, we consider here the dynamics of evolvability in a well defined theoretical model of protein evolution.  Within this model of protein structure and function, we have a fixed population of proteins, which we take to be 1,000.  We have a microscopic selection criterion, which we take to be the folding and binding of a protein to a substrate.  And we have a means of inducing constant, random environmental change.They claim the model shows that evolvability is a function of environmental change; the more dynamic the environment, the more evolvable the protein.  This, they emphasize, is their important finding.  It’s kind of like physics:An analogy with thermodynamics illuminates the issue: How is free energy minimized in a physical system of particles despite the difficulty in defining the entropy of a given configuration of the particles?  An ensemble of particle configurations allows the definition of free energy and the approach to thermodynamic equilibrium just as a population of evolving organisms allows the definition of and selection for evolvability.They seem to be viewing individual organisms as molecules, and treating Darwinian selection as a force acting on the ensemble– a form of group selection (see 05/31/2004 headline for opposing view).  Is there any evidence in nature for their position?  They point to a few possibilities:Many observations within evolutionary biology, heretofore considered evolutionary happenstance or accidents, are explained by selection for evolvability.  For example, the vertebrate immune system shows that the variable environment of antigens has provided selective pressure for the use of adaptable codons and low-fidelity polymerases during somatic hypermutation.  A similar driving force for biased codon usage as a result of productively high mutation rates is observed in the hemagglutinin protein of influenza A.  Selection for evolvability explains the prevalence of transposons among bacteria and recombination among higher organisms.Is this concept useful?  The authors feel that “therapeutics also confer selective pressure on the evolvability of pathogens, and that this driving force for antigenic drift should be considered in drug- and vaccine-design efforts.”    The believe their model shows that “The rates at which the various events within the hierarchy of evolutionary moves occur are not random or arbitrary but are selected by Darwinian evolution.  Sensibly, rapid or extreme environmental change leads to selection for greater evolvability. This selection is not forbidden by causality and is strongest on the largest-scale moves within the mutational hierarchy.”    One of their concluding statements summarizes their view into a pithy sound bite: “Not only has life evolved, but life has evolved to evolve.”1David J. Earl and Michael W. Deem, “Evolvability is a selectable trait,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, 10.1073/pnas.0404656101.It must get boring at the Darwin Party storytelling banquets (see 12/22/2003 commentary), so every once in awhile someone has to come up with a new plot to argue about.  To these guys, proteins in a test tube are a microcosm of caribou in the tundra or humans in Manhattan.  This paper might suggest a short story or novel on whether New Yorkers are evolving evolvability in response to terrorist attacks.  If so, terrorism might be a good thing; it makes the species more adaptable to sudden change.    It doesn’t matter whether the model corresponds to reality or not, or can be observed or not, as long as it makes entertaining reading, generates lively discussions and opens new markets for GameBoy.(Visited 12 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

first_imgThe Sandton CBD will be closed to cars during the month-long EcoMobility World Festival over October. Instead, people will be encouraged to use public transport, cycle and walk. Johannesburg hopes they will see the benefits of going car-free and that there will be a permanent shift. This image is a rendering of the Garden Court precinct in Sandton and how it would look like if people used less motorised means of transportation. (Image: EcoMobility Festival) • Active citizenship in South Africa at a healthy level • Research backs up South Africa’s good story • Africans abroad keen to return – Homecoming Revolution report • What African universities can do to attract academics back from the diaspora • The Conversation goes live in Africa Ray MaotaSouth Africa has a vision for its future known as the National Development Plan (NDP) or Vision 2030. To support national growth and development targets, Johannesburg, as the economic hub of the country, has developed its Growth and Development Strategy (GDS) 2040.With the start of the EcoMobility World Festival on 1 October in Sandton, the north-eastern business hub of Johannesburg, both Vision 2030 and the GDS come together. The festival runs from 1 October to 30 October 2015.The EcoMobility World Festival will enable residents and visitors to experience a car-free precinct of the future. A core area of the Sandton CBD will be closed to regular traffic for the duration of the festival. A comprehensive traffic management plan is in place to minimise the temporary impact of disruptions and to keep the public informed about alternative arrangements.One of the aims of the EcoMobility World Festival is to showcase transport system where public transport, walking and cycling are the modes of choice.This links with Johannesburg’s GDS 2040, which envisions the metro as a smart city. A smart city is an environmentally friendly city created out of a combination of concepts and technologies. These include the enhancement of energy efficiency, and water and waste management, coupled with the conservation of resources.Nationally, South Africa has made bold commitments to reduce its carbon emissions, a major cause of climate change. The government has determined to reduce 2009 emissions levels by 34% by 2020, and 42% by 2025. The NDP acknowledges that this will require a move away from the country’s current dependence on fossil fuels, towards a more sustainable development path.“The festival will demonstrate to the world that an eco-mobile future is possible and that public transport, walking and cycling can be accessible, safe and attractive,” said Johannesburg Executive Mayor Mpho Parks Tau.“We want to close off certain streets in Sandton, our second largest CBD, to car traffic and instead use these lanes for public transport, walking, cycling and other forms of eco-mobility during the entire Transport Month.”The Sandton CBD faced levels of congestion that, in the city’s opinion, were unacceptable, Tau added. Unless there was an intervention, Sandton would turn into a parking lot, as had been projected by studies done by Joburg.“Per capita, Johannesburg is the highest emitter on the African continent of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. We’ve made a commitment with our international partners and governments around the world to ensure that we reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” he said.Migrate to public transportLisa Seftel, Joburg’s executive director of transport, said October had been set aside to migrate Sandton motorists to public transport. The city aims to get 30% of drivers to use public transport.Statistics hold that more than 85 000 cars carrying about 120 000 people move around the precinct during peak traffic times every day – 70% of these are private cars. “Eco-mobility is really about eco-friendly ways of travelling, which we in the city regard as walking, cycling, and using public transport so that there are low emissions and we’re able to reduce congestion,” Seftel told business news website BizNews.“One of the important objectives of the executive mayor and why he really wanted the EcoMobility Festival to be in Sandton is because we also need to decongest Sandton.”People were being given a chance to experience public transport, walking, and cycling, Seftel added. The city hoped they would see its benefits and there would be a permanent shift.During the festival, the city is providing alternative modes of transport to Sandton.An eco-mobile city:Aims to reduce the need for motorised mobility;Ensures that transport facilities and areas are accessible to all its users;Ensures that an appropriate variety of modes of transport are available for all its users;Encourages travellers to walk, bicycle, and take public transport;Continually aims to encourage the reduction of resources use for travel; and,Continually aims to improve its performance in planning and delivering eco-mobility.The festival is taking place during October Transport Month, an annual national initiative. Its core focus is infrastructure for the different modes of transport, including public and non-motorised transport. This year, under the theme “Together we move South Africa forward”, the emphasis will extend to job creation, programmes for youth and women, and road safety.Minister Jeff Radebe, the minister in the Presidency responsible for planning, monitoring and evaluation, said October Transport Month was also an opportunity to increase road safety awareness.last_img read more

first_imgA teenager was sentenced to death by a court in central Assam’s Nagaon on Friday for the gang rape and murder of an 11-year-old girl five months ago. Zakir Hussain, the 19-year-old convict, was found to have taken the lead in raping the minor and setting her on fire at her residence in Batadrava on March 23. She died of burns while being transferred from the Nagaon civil hospital to the Guwahati Medical College and Hospital that night. The court of the Chief Judicial Magistrate in Nagaon found Hussain guilty on September 4 but reserved the pronouncement of the quantum of punishment for Friday. The police had filed a case and arrested eight people, almost all neighbours of the girl, within two days of her death. The accused were arrested on charges of rape, house trespass, causing disappearance of evidence and murder under the IPC. After a swift probe, the police filed a charge sheet on April 28 against eight persons. Five of them were acquitted due to lack of evidence against them while two others are being tried in a juvenile court. The incident had led to widespread protests across the State with the Assam government announcing in the Assembly that it will bring in a stringent anti-rape law in the next session of the House. The government also announced to recruit women sub-inspectors through a special drive to have 30% women in the police force. Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal had launched a toll free helpline, 181-Sakhi, for women in distress and the Gauhati High Court approved the proposal for setting up exclusive fast-track courts for trial of cases related to rape and murder of women and children in Assam. Organisations have welcomed the judgment. (With PTI inputs)last_img read more

first_imgKarun Nair was named captain of the Board President’s XI for the touring West Indies’ warm-up game on Friday.The two-day game will be held in Vadodara will start September 29. The BCCI’s senior selection committee picked the 13-man squad for the game.The Board President’s XI squad includes the likes of Test probables in young Prithvi Shaw, Shreyas Iyer, Mayank Agarwal and wicketkeeper-batsman Ishan Kishan, among others.All-rounder Hanuma Vihari, who made his Test debut in the final Test against England earlier this month was also named in the squad with Kerala’s Jalaj Saxena picked as the other all-rounder.The pace bowling department will have the likes of Basil Thampi, Avesh Khan and Ishan Porel in action while Saxena and Saurabh Kumar will handle the spinning responsibilities.Board President’s XI squad for Windies warm-up game announced.BP XI: Mayank Agarwal, Prithvi Shaw, Hanuma Vihari, Karun Nair (captain), Shreyas Iyer, Ankit Bawne, Ishan Kishan (wicket-keeper), Jalaj Saxena, Saurabh Kumar, Basil Thampi, Avesh Khan, K Vignesh, Ishan PorelBCCI Domestic (@BCCIdomestic) September 21, 2018India will play two Tests against West Indies starting October 4.The West Indies will be in India for almost seven weeks, starting September 26.They will compete against India in two Tests, five ODIs and three T20 Internationals.The opening Test will be held at Rajkot from October 4-8, followed by the second Test from October 12-16 at Hyderabad.The five-match ODI series will begin on October 21 at Guwahati, followed by the second ODI on October 24 at Indore and third ODI at Pune on October 27. The final two one-dayers will be held at Mumbai and Thiruvananthapuram on October 29 and November 1.advertisementThe one-dayers will be followed by the three T20 Internationals to be held at Kolkata (November 4), Lucknow (November 6) and Chennai (November 11).The West Indies are touring India on the back of a comprehensive 2-0 series win over Bangladesh.Board President’s XI: Mayank Agarwal, Prithvi Shaw, Hanuma Vihari, Karun Nair (captain), Shreyas Iyer, Ankit Bawne, Ishan Kishan (wicket-keeper), Jalaj Saxena, Saurabh Kumar, Basil Thampi, Avesh Khan, K Vignesh, Ishan Porel.(With inputs from PTI and IANS)last_img read more

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Crystal Palace chairman Parish: These kids set to follow Wan-Bissaka…by Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveCrystal Palace chairman Steve Parish is delighted with the progress of their young players.Parish expects more to follow Aaron Wan-Bissaka into manager Roy Hodgson’s first team.He told the club’s website, “…our U23s and U18s both won their respective leagues, which were brilliant achievements for our Academy. “Aaron’s progress through the ranks has been something to celebrate, but he’s not the only one to force his way into Roy’s plans. Sam Woods and Ryan Innis made their first team debuts, whilst James Daly, Nya Kirby and Giovanni McGregor have made the first team bench this year. It is an exciting time to be a young player in our Academy.” last_img read more

first_imgReal Madrid will move for Spurs star Eriksen in Januaryby Paul Vegas15 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveReal Madrid will move for Christian Eriksen in January, according to reports.Eriksen wanted to leave Tottenham this past summer, but no suitable offers arrived.He will become a free agent at the end of the season, yet Real want him as soon as possible.Marca says Real will bid for the Dane during the winter transfer window as they don’t want to take any risk of losing him.Spurs would likely accept an offer as Eriksen will walk for free in the summer. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

first_imgPeace River Zone Theatre Festival Flyer. Photo by the Stage North Theatre Society Facebook Page.Friday’s show is Blackbird, which is a heavy drama about two people who had a very unconventional affair when they were young. The Stage North Theatre Society presented this show back on May 10th, which means residents who didn’t get the chance to see this two weeks ago will have a second chance to witness the drama.Saturday’s show is Mary’s Wedding, which takes place the night before Mary’s Wedding in 1920. The play journeys through Mary’s dream, her past, and the moment she meets her first love Charlie before he volunteers for World War One. Charlie’s side of the story takes place in the trenches along side his mentor and sergeant. The play is as much about history as it is about romance.Tickets for the event cost $25 to see all three shows, or $10 for individual shows.Residents can purchased tickets at the North Peace Cultural Centre. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Peace River Zone Theatre Festival starts today at the North Peace Cultural Centre.The festival runs until Saturday and will feature a different play each day. Shows starts at 7:30 p.m. and run until 9:30 p.m.Tonights show is “Stop Saying Nothing”, which is a collection about bullying presented by North Peace Secondary School.last_img read more

first_imgJerusalem: Israel’s prime minister is portraying an Arab lawmaker, Ahmad Tibi, as a threat to national security in a campaign that critics say questions the loyalty of the country’s Arab citizens ahead of April elections. Benjamin Netanyahu has been slumping in the polls after the announcement of his pending corruption indictment. The prime minister has been repeating a campaign mantra, using his own nickname: “Bibi or Tibi.” The slogan highlights Netanyahu’s efforts to paint his challengers as conspiring with Arab Israelis and a hostile media to oust him. Tibi says he is concerned about what he views as Netanyahu’s attempt to demonize Israel’s Arab minority. Arabs make up about 20 per cent of Israel’s 9 million residents. They hold full citizenship rights but have faced decades of discrimination.last_img read more

first_imgMelbourne: Former captain Ricky Ponting feels constant scrutiny on Steve Smith and David Warner following their comeback could be “unsettling” for the Australian team during the World Cup in the United Kingdom. Ponting, who will be part of Australia’s support staff during the mega event, said Smith and Warner will have to be prepared for constant criticism from the UK crowd. Their two-year ban for ball-tampering ends later this month and they will feature in the IPL beginning March 23. Also Read – Dhoni, Paes spotted playing football together”I don’t think it is much of a challenge internally around the players. You’d like to think that those guys are having conversations now, so they’re not leaving it to the last minute and just be exposed to this thing that could be derailing to a team,” Ponting told cricket.com.au. “I’m sure this would have been talked about at a higher level for a long time – how do we integrate them back in? How do they fit in? How is it all going to be seamless? But the hardest part for those guys is going to be the public perception of us, especially in England,” said the two-time World Cup winning captain. Also Read – Andy Murray to make Grand Slam return at Australian OpenConstant attention on Smith and Warner could affect the team during the World Cup, said Ponting. They’re coming back into a World Cup in the UK – they shouldn’t be expecting too many pats on the back over there. They’re going to cop it everywhere they go. They’ve got to know that, they’ve got to accept that and understand that. “The team needs to as well, because that could also be something that could be unsettling for a team.” Australia go into the World Cup as defending champions but this time, they don’t go enter the tournament as outright favourites. Ponting feels things could get a lot easier for Warner and Smith if they are amongst the runs. “I think they are well equipped (to handle the scrutiny), but I think it could be a shock for them by the same token when they come back. They have to expect the absolute worst and then anything better than that is going to be a bonus for them. That would be the way I would approach it if I was them.last_img read more