Twitter’s Election Site: A Sign of What’s to Come?

first_imgJust in time for tonight’s first presidential debate (which, as we just learned, will indeed take place), Twitter has launched an election themed site that tracks all the political tweets on the service. Twitter regularly determines a set of ‘Hot Election Topics’ and displays every tweet that fits into these categories in a automatically updating stream. While this is definitely a compelling way to use Twitter, we can’t help but wonder if Twitter will bring some of the features of this site to other parts of the service.Politweets, of course, has been providing a similar service for quite a while already, but its scope is limited to just filtering out tweets with the candidates’ names in it. Twitter, on the other hand, uses a constantly changing set of keywords, which makes it far more dynamic.Automatic Updates and Memetracking The most compelling feature of Twitter’s election site is actually quite simple: the automatically updating stream. That’s one feature we have always missed on our regular Twitter homepages and also one of the most compelling reason to use a desktop client instead of Twitter’s site. The value of a service like this is often not so much in the content of a single tweet, but in the aggregation and real-time view of the discussion. Even Twitter’s Summize-based search does not update automatically. We have started to use Monitter to track Twitter conversations when there is a breaking news story because it updates automatically.In addition, as Josh Catone points out, Twitter sits on a goldmine of similar information that it is not putting to good use yet. Now that they have this infrastructure in place, Twitter could easily create similar sites for other events, or even allow its users to create their own Twitter-based memetrackers in the future. The Dos and Don’ts of Brand Awareness Videos Related Posts frederic lardinois Tags:#Product Reviews#twitter#web center_img Guide to Performing Bulk Email Verification Facebook is Becoming Less Personal and More Pro… A Comprehensive Guide to a Content Auditlast_img read more

Build Cross-Platform Widgets in the Cloud with Netvibes Studio

first_imgeXo released its hosted IDE earlier this year. Its features include versioning, Java validation and REST service discovery.Netvibes shifted from being a consumer-centric RSS dashboard to building enterprise dashboards a couple years ago. Cognitive Automation is the Immediate Future of… Massive Non-Desk Workforce is an Opportunity fo… klint finley Related Posts IT + Project Management: A Love Affair 3 Areas of Your Business that Need Tech Now Tags:#enterprise#saas Dashboard software-as-a-service provider Netvibes and enterprise Java platform builder eXo have teamed up to create Netvibes Studio, a cloud-based development environment for building cross-platform widgets. Widgets built with Netvibes Studio can run in any browser, and can be deployed instantly into the Netvibes environment. Better yet, they will work in most major widget platforms, including iGoogle, Windows Vista, Apple Dashboard, Live.com, iPhone, Opera and more.last_img read more

Critical Topics for Cybersecurity Professionals

first_imgIt is important and difficult to stay current with relevant issues in our industry.  Cybersecurity is furiously changing, fast in its pace, and rising in global importance.  Professionals must not only keep abreast of what is happening today, but also what is emerging on the horizon and heading our direction.  Security becomes stronger when professionals collectively explore ideas and actively collaborate on developing better practices.  As a cybersecurity strategist, my eyes are fixed on the future risks and opportunities.  Here is my list of what we all must be learning, discussing, and deliberating about now, so we can be prepared for what lies ahead.Integrity Attacks will Rise to be the Next Wave in CyberOne constant in cybersecurity is the continual rise in sophistication and creativity of the threats.  We are seeing the beginnings of a fundamental expansion to attacker’s techniques.  Integrity compromises will rise and join the more familiar Confidentiality (ex. Data Breach) and Availability (ex. Denial-of-Service) attacks.  Integrity attacks undermine the trust of transactions and communications.  Ransomware, Business Email Scams, and financial transaction fraud, are all growing examples of integrity compromises.  This third-wave will drive significantly greater impacts due to their nature, the lack of available security tools, and weak processes to manage the risks.  We are already witnessing savvy attackers making hundreds of millions of dollars in a single campaign and will likely see a billion dollar heist by the end of the year.  Everyone is at risk.• The Great Bank Robbery: Carbanak cybergang steals $1bn from 100 financial institutions worldwide• $2.3 Billion Lost to CEO Email Scams: FBI Warns of Dramatic Increase in Business E-Mail Scams• Bangladesh Bank Hack: How a hacker’s typo helped stop a billion dollar bank heistIoT Security:  Where Digital Life-Safety and Privacy Issues meets ConsumersOur insatiable desire to integrate technology with our lives is changing the equation of security and safety.  With the growth of the Internet of Things (IoT) devices going from 15 billion to 200 billion by 2020 and the focus by attackers to get more access to critical capabilities, we may be unwittingly handing life-safety controls to the cyber threats.  Such devices capture our conversations, video, health, activities, location, conversations, relationship connections, interests, and lifestyle.  Will personal discretion and privacy survive?IoT security is a huge and complex topic in the industry, earning the attention of everyone from researchers to mainstream media.  Although transportation, healthcare, critical infrastructure, and drones are capturing most of the interest, connected devices and sensors are destined to be interwoven throughout businesses and across all walks of life.  The benefits will be tremendous, as will the accompanying risks.• Growth of global IoT Security Market To Exhibit 55% CAGR As Threat Of Security Breaches Rises• Trust and security fears could hold back the Internet of Things• IoT and Privacy: Keeping Secrets from your Webcam• Police called after ‘drone’ hits plane landing at HeathrowWhy Ransomware will become the next scourge of securityThe rise of ransomware is phenomenal, fleecing hundreds of millions of dollars from consumers, businesses, and even government agencies.  This financial windfall for cyber criminals will fuel continued innovation, creativity, and persistence to victimize as many people as possible.  It has found a soft spot, taking advantage of human frailties while targeting something of meaningful value to the victim, then offering remediation at an acceptable price point. This form of extortion is maturing quickly, exhibiting a high level of professional management, coding, and services.  Ransomware is proving very scalable and difficult to undermine.  It will surely continue because it is successful.  Can it be stopped?  How can everyday people and businesses protect themselves? Will security solutions rally? What will we see next in the rapid evolution of ransomware?• Cyber Threat Alliance report: Lucrative Ransomware Attacks – Analysis of the CryptoWall Version 3• US Computer Emergency Readiness Team: Ransomware and Recent Variants• Hospital Declares ‘Internal State of Emergency’ After Ransomware InfectionWhat are the Hidden Long Term Impacts of Cybersecurity?The industry looks at cybersecurity as a series of never ending tactical issues to be individually addressed.  This is a symptomatic perspective, when the reality is a systemic problem.  The real impacts of the future are hidden from view and are staggering.  It is time we mature our perspectives and see the strategic problem and opportunities.  Estimates range from $3 trillion to $90 trillion dollars of global economic impact by 2030.  We as a community must understand the scale of the challenges and how addressing security in a tactical manner is simply not sustainable.  This is becoming a deep intellectual discussion topic among cyber strategists.  How do we change the mindset from short-term expensive fixes to a long-term effective treatment at a holistic level across the ecosystem?• The Hidden Costs of Cyber Attacks• Cybercrime may cost$2 trillion by 2019 • $90 trillion dollars cyber impact for one scenario affecting the global benefits of Information and Communications Technologies by 2030• 3 Trillion Aggregate economic impact of cybersecurity on technology trends, through 2020The Battle for Security Leads to the HardwareAs attackers evolve, they get stronger, smarter, and more resourceful.  It has become a cat-and-mouse game between the threats and the pursuing security capabilities.  The trend is for attackers to move further down the technology stack.  Each successively lower lever affords more control and the ability to hide from the security above.  The most advantageous position is in the hardware, where the root-of-trust originates.  The race is on.  Advanced researchers and attackers are looking to outmaneuver security by compromising hardware and firmware of devices.Traditional defensive structures must also advance to meet the new challenges.  Security features embedded or enhanced by hardware can be incredibly powerful to support effective defenses and visibility, even against the most advanced attacker.  Control of hardware and firmware will play an ever greater role in protecting technology and users.  Who will win?• The hardware roots of trust• Attackers Seek to Hack Hardware for Ultimate Control• Security on Silicon the Next Big Step in Cyber ProtectionJob Crisis in CybersecurityCybersecurity is in dire straits.  There is not enough talented security professionals to fill the need.  In a few years, there will be an estimated 1 ½-2 million unfilled cybersecurity positions.  This will have a catastrophic effect on securing people and technology.  Organizations have two problems; finding candidates to fill open positions and retaining the professionals they currently have from lucrative competitive offers.  The disparity between supply and growing demand drives up salaries, spurs aggressive headhunting, increases the costs of security operations, limits the overall comprehensiveness of shorthanded teams, and artificially extends the windows of opportunity for attackers.  It’s like trying to play competitive soccer without a full team in the field.The best way to correct the problem is to address the supply side of the equation.  More cybersecurity professionals are needed.  Long term, only academia can save cybersecurity and they are struggling to retool, to sufficiently prepare the next generation of security professionals.  Until then, this problem will affect every organization who needs security staff, potentially for years to come, and may drive up the use of Managed Security Service Providers (MSSP’s).• The Center for Cyber Safety and Education report: 2020 predictions expecting the shortfall of information security positions to reach 1.5 million• One Million Cybersecurity Job Openings In 2016• Higher Education Must Save Cybersecurity• Job Market Intelligence: Cybersecurity Jobs 2015 report published by Burning Glass TechnologiesCybersecurity Predictions for 2016A slew of expert predictions is now available from a variety of sources.  They typically come out by the end of the first quarter and although some are better than others, all of them provide perspectives for 2016 and beyond.  Peering into the future of cybersecurity provides valuable insights around the challenges and opportunities.  The industry is changing rapidly and attackers seem to always be one step ahead.  Take advantage of what the experts are taking about, but beware some are trying to sell you their wares.  Understand how anticipated trends will affect your organization, customers, and partners in the industry.  Plan how you can adapt to find a sustainable balance in managing the security of computing capabilities and technology.• Intel Security McAfee Labs 2016 Threat Predictions whitepaper  • Top 10 Cybersecurity Predictions for 2016 and Beyond • The Top 16 Security Predictions from Companies and MagazinesHow versed are you in these topics?  I believe they will have far reaching repercussions and every cybersecurity professional should understand these areas.  Those who benefit from the insights of the future, can be better prepared to adapt to the changes.Interested in more?  Follow me on Twitter (@Matt_Rosenquist) and LinkedIn to hear insights and what is going on in cybersecurity.last_img read more

Bat Caves Closed by Feds

first_imgTo stop the possible western spread of white-nose syndrome, the U.S. Forest Service has issued an order to temporarily shut all caves and abandoned mines on federal lands in Colorado, Wyoming, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Kansas. In a press release, Bat Conservation International, whose staff includes a number of respected scientists, says it supports the measure: Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*) White-nose Syndrome is the most severe threat ever faced by North American bats. More than 1 million bats have been killed by WNS since it was found in a single New York cave in 2006. Mortality rates at some hibernation sites have reached almost 100 percent, and species extinctions are increasingly likely. Top scientists are searching desperately for solutions, but they have found no means of curing or preventing this disease or even of slowing its disastrous spread. The one-year closure of western caves is an effort to buy time to examine all options. In this crisis, the decision is reasonable and prudent. Simply waiting for WNS to arrive before taking decisive action is far too risky.last_img read more

Tata Sky, Airtel making sports channels free for all subscribers, offer to extend till May 20

first_imgThe IPL 2019 is underway and DTH operators have been trying their best to increase viewership by offering special sports plans for subscribers. Popular DTH operators such as Airtel Digital TV, Tata Sky and Dish TV have come up with special channel bouquets that offer all the sports channels along with other essential channels at reasonable prices. However, with new TRAI regulations in place, operators are unsure of whether subscribers are going for the new packs or not. To keep viewers interested, Airtel and Tata Sky have come up with a new offer to draw subscribers to their TVs.Both Tata Sky and Airtel Digital TV are offering a host of sports channels for free. The free channels are being provided to all subscribers across the country so as to increase the viewership of the IPL 2019 tournament. However, the sports channels will only be free for a limited period and subscribers will have to pay charges for those channels once the entitlement is over.Tata Sky is offering a host of important sports channels that will provide coverage of the IPL 2019. The channels that Tata Sky is offering for free include Star Sports 1 Hindi, Star Sports 1 Tamil, Star Sports 1 Telugu, Star Sports 1 Kannada, and Start Sports 1 Bangla. The channels will be available for free from March 23 and will be brought back to the paid plans from May 20.As for Airtel Digital TV, the operator is including these sports channels — Star Sports 1, Star Sports 1 HD, Star, Sports 1 Hindi, Star Sports 1 Hindi HD, Star Sports 1 Telugu, Star Sports 1 Tamil, Star, Sports 1 Kannada and Star Sports 1 Bangla. However, Airtel will only be offering these channels for free until May 19. Unlike Tata Sky, Airtel is also including the HD versions of the popular sports channels, which makes it great for Airtel Digital TV HD subscribers.advertisementThe free channels are a way to gain back subscribers who were lost during the transition phase of the new TRAI DTH regulations. Since the new regulations were implemented from February 1, existing subscribers have taken to Twitter to complain about the higher prices. In comparison, the channel bouquets by operators have been offering more channels for similar prices. With online content streaming platforms going aggressive with their recharge plans, the move to offer sports channels for free comes across as a way to lure people back to the DTH TV connection.ALSO READ | Jio DTH effect: Airtel Digital TV may rule DTH market with 61 per cent share if it merges with Dish TVALSO READ | New Airtel 4G plans starting effectively at Rs 399 per month for Hotspot devicesALSO READ | BSNL offers extension of validity for 6 months with Rs 599 recharge plan, no data benefitslast_img read more

Silver Muse to Homeport at Port Everglades

first_imgzoom Florida’s Port Everglades revealed it will welcome Silversea Cruises’ newest cruise ship Silver Muse on October 12-13, 2017, and continue to serve as the cruise line’s winter homeport for the next two years.The announcement follows the agreement inked between Monaco-based Silversea Cruises and the Broward County Commission in Florida for an initial two-year period with the option to renew for an additional three years, with a maximum of twelve sailings annually.“Silversea Cruises has been a valued customer of Port Everglades for many years, and with the agreement in place, we look forward to welcoming Silversea’s newest flagship Silver Muse when it makes its US debut this fall,” Steven Cernak, Port Everglades Chief Executive & Port Director, said.Silversea Cruises has been sailing from Port Everglades since October 2000.In addition to voyages of Silver Spirit, Silver Whisper and Silver Wind also sailing from Port Everglades, the 596-passenger Silver Muse is scheduled for five sailings next year, according to the port.The construction of Silver Muse began at Fincantieri’s Sestri Ponente shipyard in Genoa in July 2015.Launched in July 2016, the 40,700 gross ton ship is scheduled for delivery in May 2017, VesselsValue’s data shows.last_img read more

The Latest Congressional leaders arrive for shutdown talks

first_imgWASHINGTON — The Latest on the partial government shutdown (all times local):11:48 a.m.Congressional leaders are arriving at the White House to meet with President Donald Trump amid an extended partial government shutdown over his funding demands for a border wall.Republican Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell and Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi both arrived at the White House Friday for another meeting on the 14th day of the shutdown. Democratic Senate Minority leader Chuck Schumer and House Republican Minority leader Kevin McCarthy also arrived for the meeting.Leaders came to the White House earlier this week for a briefing on border security that ended in impasse. Trump and Democrats are at odds over funding for Trump’s proposed wall at the U.S.-Mexico border.The meeting comes as GOP senators up for re-election in 2020 voiced discomfort with the extended shutdown.__12:37 a.m.On their first day in the majority, House Democrats have passed a plan to re-open the government without funding President Donald Trump’s promised border wall.The largely party-line votes Thursday night came after Trump made a surprise appearance at the White House briefing room, pledging to keep up the fight for his signature campaign promise.House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Trump and Senate Republicans should “take yes for an answer” and approve the border bill, which was virtually identical to a plan the Senate adopted on a voice vote last month. Pelosi told reporters: “We’re not doing a wall.”President Donald Trump has taken just as firm a stance not to re-open the government unless money is provided for a wall on the border.Amid signs of Republican unease over the prolonged partial government shutdown, congressional leaders planned to meet Friday with President Donald Trump after House Democrats muscled through legislation to fund the government but not his border wall.The impasse over paying for Trump’s proposed wall at the U.S.-Mexico border extended the shutdown into a 14th day, but some GOP senators up for re-election in 2020 voiced discomfort. Several are from states where voter views on Trump are mixed.Sen. Cory Gardner of Colorado said Congress should pass bipartisan bills to fund government “while we continue to fight for more border security money.” And Republican Susan Collins of Maine said she saw “no reason why the bills that are ready to go and on which we’ve achieved an agreement should be held hostage to this debate over border security.”Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said the measures are non-starters on his side of the Capitol without the president’s support.Adding to the unease are economic jitters as analysts warn of the risks of closures that are disrupting government operations across multiple departments and agencies at a time of other uncertainties in the stock market and foreign trade.House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Trump and Senate Republicans should “take yes for an answer” and pass the legislation — without money for the wall — that the Senate approved on a voice vote last month.“We’re not doing a wall. Does anyone have any doubt that we’re not doing a wall?” Pelosi said Thursday night.But the White House line was still firm. Vice-President Mike Pence told Fox News late Thursday, “Bottom line, if there’s no wall, there’s no deal.”In their first votes of the new Congress, House Democrats approved bills Thursday night to re-open government at previously agreed upon levels. Several Republicans crossed over to join them.Friday’s White House meeting with Trump includes eight leaders — the top two Democrats and Republicans of both chambers. A session earlier in the week produced finger pointing with no breakthroughs.Republicans said the new round of talks might be more productive now that Pelosi is speaker. But Democrats said the problem isn’t with them but with Trump, who once boasted of the shutdown but now must try to explain blocking the effort to re-open government with bills Republicans had earlier approved.Trump on Wednesday told the leaders he would “look foolish” for conceding without money for the wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.On Thursday, Trump made a surprise appearance at the White House briefing room, pledging to keep up the fight for his signature campaign promise.“You can call it a barrier, you can call it whatever you want,” Trump said. “But essentially we need protection in our country. We’re going to make it good. The people of our country want it.”Trump is demanding billions of dollars to build his wall along the U.S. border with Mexico.Asked if she would give Trump $1 for a wall to reopen the government, Pelosi said: “One dollar? Yeah, one dollar. The fact is a wall is an immorality. It’s not who we are as a nation.”Polls show a majority of Americans oppose the border wall, although Republicans strongly support it.White House and Department of Homeland Security officials have spent recent days trying to make both a public and private case that the situation at the border has reached a crisis point that demands more money than Democrats have offered.Trump tweeted an ominous video Thursday with images of what appeared to be migrants trying to rush the border and clashing with law enforcement, beneath the words “crisis at the border,” ”drugs” and “crime.” The video concludes with footage of Trump at the border along with audio from one of his rallies in which he vows to build his promised border wall and the crowd chants “Build the wall!”Trump has said the partial shutdown, which began Dec. 22, will last “as long as it takes” to get the funding he wants.The White House said he made calls Thursday to the family of Cpl. Ronil Singh, the Newman, California, police officer shot to death during a Dec. 26 traffic stop. The suspected shooter is a Mexican man accused of living in the U.S. illegally. Republicans have seized on the case to call for tougher border security.___Associated Press writers Eileen Putman, Lisa Mascaro, Laurie Kellman, Kevin Freking, Alan Fram and Mary Clare Jalonick contributed.The Associated Presslast_img read more

Postbailout Greece readies for return to bond market

ATHENS, Greece — Greece has announced plans to raise up to 3 billion euros ($3.4 billion) via a 5-year bond, in what be the country’s first market test since the end of its international bailout last August.The country’s Public Debt Management Agency Monday named BofA Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs International Bank, HSBC, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley, and SG CIB as joint lead managers for the issue.The date of the bond launch was not announced. It is expected to take place next week.Greece has held off returning to debt markets due to financial turbulence created by a budget crisis in Italy. But borrowing rates eased in recent weeks and the government last week survived the threat of collapse over a vote in parliament to normalize relations with neighbour Macedonia.The Associated Press read more

Is the Canadian economy expanding more than we think

OTTAWA — After several high-profile downgrades, the Canadian economy is getting some support from two reports that suggest the future may be brighter than most believe.A leading economic indicator from the Macdonald-Laurier Institute registered its second consecutive monthly gain in September, a signal of moderate growth.The index rose 0.2% after a 0.1 gain in August and a flat reading in July.The MLI indicator shows there is still life in the Canadian economy and Canada will finish the year in a growth positionAnd Export Development Canada chief economist Peter Hall issued a new outlook Tuesday predicting that exports — the Achilles heel of the economy — will register growth of 4.6% this year and 6.3% in 2013. Those are not strong numbers, but likely sufficient to become positives for overall gross domestic product.“The bottom line is that while opposing economic forces are strong, the world economy’s final growth push is on, led by the U.S.,” said Hall.“With Canada so close to the core of the action and well-positioned to participate, Canadian exporters should be readying themselves to run right now.”In the past few days, the Bank of Canada, the Parliamentary Budget Officer and a consensus of economists sampled by the Finance Department all to varying degrees pointed to slower than expected growth in the next couple of years.[np-related]Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said Monday that the revisions aren’t likely to throw the government off track in its fiscal projections, but that soft global conditions — from Europe to the United States to China — were all dragging Canada down as well.But Flaherty also highlighted some positives, particularly from the slowly but steadily improving housing market south the border, which he said should help Canadian exporters, particularly the lumber industry.That is also what Hall is counting on for his relatively rosy outlook, predicting that the U.S. will grow by 2.8% next year and noting that home construction is currently up 35%.Coincidentally, Standard & Poor’s/Case Shiller housing index reported Tuesday that U.S. prices rose two per cent in August from a year ago, the third straight monthly improvement.Bank of Montreal economist Doug Porter sees merit in arguments for higher than expected growth.“Maybe one of the most positive developments in 2012 is it does look like the U.S. housing market is starting to turn the corner and there’s probably as much a chance the U.S. economy outperforms over the next year as underperforms,” Porter said.The Macdonald-Laurier index also makes the case for an economy that is expanding, if at snail’s pace. The index, which had been on a downward slide throughout the first half of the year, has now recorded two consecutive months of growth.“The MLI indicator shows there is still life in the Canadian economy and Canada will finish the year in a growth position,” said Philip Cross, a research co-ordinator with the institute.The new measure from the think-tank was established last month to fill the gap of economic indicators created after Statistics Canada ceased issuing the index.The positives for September included a healthy 0.6% increase in the money supply and a narrowing in the interest rate spread between private and public borrowers.On the negative side, the housing component fell 2.5% due to both fewer starts and existing home sales.The Canadian Press read more

BC workers families seek class action suit over deadly sawmill explosions

B.C. workers, families seek class action suit over deadly sawmill explosions VANCOUVER – Ten people connected to a pair of deadly sawmill explosions in British Columbia are asking a judge to certify a class-action lawsuit seeking damages for physical and mental injuries.The separate blasts in 2012 killed four workers and injured 42 people at Babine Forest Products in Burns Lake and Lakeland Mills in Prince George.A notice of civil claim named the Workers Compensation Board of B.C. and the provincial government.In a statement Tuesday, Scott McCloy with WorkSafeBC said the agency had no immediate comment on the allegations.Patrick Michell was inside the Babine mill when it blew up in January 2012. He and nine others are seeking general, special and punitive damages, as well as declarations that WorkSafe’s inspections and investigations were negligent.“The class members trusted WorkSafe to take all reasonable steps to ensure the safety of the mills and to competently investigate the explosions,” the statement of claim said.“By failing in both respects, WorkSafe betrayed the class members’ trust, denied them justice for their suffering and for the suffering and deaths of their loved ones, undermined their faith in government and robbed them of the sense of security and safety that a trustworthy and competent system of prevention and deterrence provides.”Michell represents one of six classes of plaintiffs, including workers who were in the two mills when fire tore through them. Workers who were off-shift, and family members of on- and off-shift workers at both locations are also represented.They allege WorkSafeBC ignored its legal duty to represent workers’ interests.The allegations have yet to be tested in court.Many workers were out of work for months following the explosions, which the claim said were caused by combustible wood dust in levels that WorkSafe had identified as unsafe months or years earlier.“At no time prior to the Babine explosion did WorkSafe issue Babine Forest Products any orders or administrative penalties in respect of combustible wood dust.”It also referenced at least 24 separate inspections of the Prince George mill in the years leading up to the April 2012 explosion, with each inspection uncovering unacceptable levels of wood dust, yet producing no WorkSafe orders to clean up.“WorkSafe’s conduct was reckless and departed to a very marked degree from the standard of conduct expected of a responsible and competent inspector,” the claim said.Michell suffered permanent paralysis and burns to 37 per cent of his body in the Babine blast, while Lakeland worker Bruce Germyn endured a brain injury and burns to 35 per cent of his body.Workers who were not on the job on the night of the tragedies report mental distress and anxiety, while family members such as Sidney, B.C., resident John Little, whose son died in the Lakeland explosion, still deal with anxiety, distress and loss of enjoyment of life, the claim said.Under the Workers Compensation Act, the claim said employees cannot sue an employer and must rely on WorkSafe to protect their interests.WorkSafeBC and the province have three weeks to respond to the allegations. by The Canadian Press Posted Jan 12, 2016 2:00 am MDT Last Updated Jan 12, 2016 at 2:20 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email read more