• Hawks use dominant 3rd quarter to rout Cavs

    Cleveland, OH (SportsNetwork.com) – A third-quarter onslaught Tuesday night might’ve helped the Atlanta Hawks silence some doubters. Shelvin Mack hit six 3-pointers and netted 24 points off the bench as the Hawks routed the Cavaliers...
  • Castro urges US to lift Cuba embargo

    Castro urges US to lift Cuba embargo

    18 December 2014 Last updated at 02:12 Cubans celebrated news that the US was releasing high-profile prisoners Cuban President Raul Castro has urged the US to end its trade embargo after the two countries opened...
  • Sony downplays digital ‘Interview’ possibility

    Sony downplays digital ‘Interview’ possibility

      “The Interview” got into trouble thanks to the Internet. But maybe the Internet can save it, too? Or maybe not. On Wednesday night, after Sony (SNE) canceled the film’s planned Christmas Day release of...
  • Report: Bears to start Clausen over Cutler

    (SportsNetwork.com) – With two games left in a dreadful season, the Chicago Bears are reportedly benching their starting quarterback. The Bears plan to start Jimmy Clausen over Jay Cutler in Sunday’s game against the Detroit...
  • EU leaders focus on investment boost

    EU leaders focus on investment boost

    18 December 2014 Last updated at 00:05 Jean-Claude Juncker says the EU – struggling for growth – is in the “last chance saloon” EU leaders are heading for a Brussels summit to discuss an ambitious...

Headline News

  • U.S. shippers cite wide gap in labor talks with West Coast dockworkers


    LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Negotiators for shipping lines and terminal operators at 29 U.S. West Coast ports remain far from a deal with union dockworkers after seven months of contract talks, the companies said on Wednesday, again blaming the union for waterfront cargo slowdowns. The Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) statement came a day before the companies were slated to resume face-to-face bargaining with the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, representing 20,000 West Coast dockworkers in the talks. The two sides huddled separately on Wednesday, two days after the union furnished the companies a counter-offer to a new set of proposals delivered by management last week. “We are awaiting their reply, and perhaps they will have a response to all or part of our proposal” when talks resume, union spokesman Craig Merrilees said. Ninety union delegates from all 29 ports met on Monday and Tuesday in San Francisco and voted unanimously to endorse their negotiating team. …

    December 17, 2014 9:09 pm
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Politics

  • Washington governor unveils carbon cap-and-trade plan


    SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Washington Governor Jay Inslee on Wednesday laid out a plan for a carbon cap-and-trade program aimed at fighting global warming and raising $1 billion a year for state schools and public transportation initiatives, but he will first need the support of a divided state legislature. The program would place an overall limit, or cap, on the amount of carbon that large businesses and fuel distributors can emit. Those companies would then have the option to either reduce their carbon output, buy carbon permits at state-run auctions, or purchase permits from other businesses on the open market. However, the program faces an uphill battle politically since it will need the state legislature to sign off on the proposal before becoming law, including approval from the Republican-held state Senate. The proposal in many ways mirrors California’s two-year-old cap-and-trade program, which, like Washington, also aims to help the state roll carbon emissions back to …

    December 17, 2014 7:28 pm
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Stocks

  • Sony downplays digital ‘Interview’ possibility


      “The Interview” got into trouble thanks to the Internet. But maybe the Internet can save it, too? Or maybe not. On Wednesday night, after Sony (SNE) canceled the film’s planned Christmas Day release of the controversial film, the embattled studio also discouraged speculation that it might release the film digitally. “Sony Pictures has no further release plans for the film,” a studio spokesperson said in response to questions about digital distribution. It’s understandable why the digital possibilities were considered. Sony could have pursued streaming services like Netflix (NFLX, Tech30) and video-on-demand cable services like the one operated by Comcast (CCV). “Sony should fight fire with fire: Make ‘The Interview’ available online, for free, on every pirate site in the world. In HD,” said Digital Disrupton author James McQuivey in a tweet to CNN’s Brian Stelter. Plenty of studios release straight to streaming and pay-TV all the time, but usually with smaller, low-budget films. For …

    December 17, 2014 8:29 pm
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Sports

  • Hawks use dominant 3rd quarter to rout Cavs


    Cleveland, OH (SportsNetwork.com) – A third-quarter onslaught Tuesday night might’ve helped the Atlanta Hawks silence some doubters. Shelvin Mack hit six 3-pointers and netted 24 points off the bench as the Hawks routed the Cavaliers 127-98, avenging an ugly loss to Cleveland just over a month ago. A huge second-quarter run lifted the Hawks to a five-point halftime advantage, but they took the game over in the third after shooting 61.9 percent (13- of-21) and assisting on eight of their 13 made field goals. Atlanta outscored Cleveland 30-15 in the frame and cruised to the easy triumph in the fourth, leading by as many as 31. The Hawks, who posted 36 assists, have tallied 20-or-more helpers in all but two games and had assisted on an NBA-best 67.4 percent of shots made coming in. Cleveland blew out Atlanta 127-94 on Nov. 15. ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT

    December 17, 2014 9:09 pm
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World News

  • Castro urges US to lift Cuba embargo


    18 December 2014 Last updated at 02:12 Cubans celebrated news that the US was releasing high-profile prisoners Cuban President Raul Castro has urged the US to end its trade embargo after the two countries opened formal talks on restoring diplomatic relations. He said the five-decade embargo “caused enormous human and economic damage”. But only the US Congress has the power to lift the embargo, and correspondents say many Republicans are still deeply opposed to this. On Wednesday, US President Barack Obama and Mr Castro agreed a number of measures to improve ties. They included the release by Cuba of US contractor Alan Gross and three Cubans held in the US. Relations between the US and Cuba have been frozen since the early 1960s when the US broke off diplomatic relations and imposed a trade embargo after Cuba’s revolution led to communism. But in unprecedented moves on Wednesday, Mr Obama said the “rigid and outdated policy” …

    December 17, 2014 9:09 pm
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Technology

  • Terrorist Threats May Blow Up ‘The Interview’s’ Box Office


    The now-notoriously controversial action comedy The Interview, which was expected to deliver profits of US$90-$95 million for Sony, may have become a financial black hole. The movie’s Thursday premiere in New York has been cancelled, and several movie theater chains have scrapped plans to screen it, following a hacker message referencing 9/11 and threatening physical attacks on theaters. Sony executives tacitly agreed to the cancellations, according to reports, but it’s not clear whether Sony has axed the movie’s Christmas debut. Sony Pictures Entertainment did not respond to our request for further details. The Short Arm of the Law Sony requested help from law enforcement agencies including the United States Department of Homeland Security and the FBI to track down the cybercriminals who breached its networks in November. The FBI on Tuesday said it was “aware of recent threats” in a statement provided to TechNewsWorld by spokesperson Jenny Shearer. The agency is continuing “to work collaboratively …

    December 17, 2014 7:49 pm
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Science

  • Switching to spintronics


    Related images(click to enlarge) In a development that holds promise for future magnetic memory and logic devices, researchers with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and Cornell University successfully used an electric field to reverse the magnetization direction in a multiferroic spintronic device at room temperature. This demonstration, which runs counter to conventional scientific wisdom, points a new way towards spintronics and smaller, faster and cheaper ways of storing and processing data. “Our work shows that 180-degree magnetization switching in the multiferroic bismuth ferrite can be achieved at room temperature with an external electric field when the kinetics of the switching involves a two-step process,” says Ramamoorthy Ramesh, Berkeley Lab’s Associate Laboratory Director for Energy Technologies, who led this research. “We exploited this multi-step switching process to demonstrate energy-efficient control of a spintronic device.” Ramesh, who also holds the Purnendu Chatterjee Endowed Chair in Energy Technologies at the University …

    December 17, 2014 7:49 pm
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Health

  • Pharnext drug shows promise in neurological disease with no treatment


    (Reuters) – Using technology gleaned from the mapping of the human genome, privately held French drug developer Pharnext SAS is a step closer to providing a treatment for a rare neurological disorder called Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) disease, for which no pharmaceutical therapy exists. The company on Wednesday said its three-drug combination, currently known as PXT-3003, led to a 14.4 percent improvement compared with placebo on a scale used to evaluate disability of the upper and lower limbs in an 80-patient mid-stage study. The inherited nerve disorder, caused by over expression of a gene, is characterized by a progressive muscle atrophy of the extremities, leading to problems in walking, running and balance, as well as abnormal hand function. CMT patients currently receive only supportive care for the disease including orthotics, leg braces, physical therapy or surgery. About 5 percent of CMT patients with the most common 1A form of the disease end up in a wheelchair. There …

    December 17, 2014 7:48 pm
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Entertainment

  • North Korea’s threats cause New Regency to scrap Steve Carell’s film


    In fact, the entire film industry is taking notice and swift action as a result. More: Sony hacks — a full timeline of every dirty detail revealed Now that Sony has decided to keep the Seth Rogen and James Franco movie out of theaters, New Regency has announced another casualty: Steve Carell’s in-development project set in North Korea will not be made. The untitled thriller has been indefinitely canceled, according to Deadline. Steve Carell, who rarely posts to Twitter, shared a disappointed tweet shortly following the news. Sad day for creative expression. #feareatsthesoul — Steve Carell (@SteveCarell) December 17, 2014 The film, with the working title Pyongyang, according to slashfilm.com, was a dark comedy based on the graphic novel by Guy Delisle, described as “a paranoid thriller about a Westerner’s experiences working in North Korea for a year.” More: Is reading Sony’s hacked e-mails the same as looking at hacked nude pics? North Korea’s chilling …

    December 17, 2014 9:29 pm
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Editorial

  • Pope Francis’ Vatican just gave Democrats a big boost for 2016


    Sept. 17, 2014: Vice President Joe Biden speaks to a Catholic nun during the kickoff of the Nuns on the Bus at the Statehouse in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP) A bombshell Vatican report released Monday that gives a green light to the social activism of left-wing U.S. nuns is the latest example of how the more liberal papacy of Pope Francis could affect the outcome of the 2016 US elections. The report forms the conclusion of an investigation, known as an “Apostolic Visitation,” into the practices and beliefs of sisters across the U.S. that was launched in 2008 under the papacy of Pope Benedict XVI amid long-standing concerns that many orders had lost their way. ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT Although there are a significant number of vibrant orthodox orders, such as the pro-life Sisters of Life, the Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia and the Little Sisters of the Poor (who are currently fighting the ObamaCare contraception mandate), …

    December 17, 2014 7:49 pm
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Odd News

  • Canadian picks stranger with ex-girlfriend’s name for world trip


    TORONTO (Reuters) – A Canadian man will travel the world with Elizabeth Gallagher. Just not the same Elizabeth Gallagher he used to date. Jordan Axani, 28, and his former girlfriend booked the three-week trip in May, including stops in Italy, France, India and Thailand. But the pair broke up, leaving Axani with plane tickets booked in her name. Wary of the hassle of changing names on tickets booked with several airlines, Axani put out a call on social media website Reddit in November for someone with the same name as his ex-girlfriend and a valid Canadian passport. After worldwide media attention, Axani received thousands of responses, including from Nova Scotia student Elizabeth “Quinn” Gallagher, 23. Axani picked Gallagher, a homeless shelter volunteer, after talking with her on the phone and becoming impressed with her social conscience. “It’s totally platonic,” Axani said from New York where the trip starts on Sunday. “Do I think we’ll become …

    December 17, 2014 7:49 pm
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