Headline News

  • Two NY boys rescued from snowbank after plow inadvertently buries them


    Two boys were rescued from a snowbank in upstate New York early Thursday after a plow operator clearing a parking lot inadvertently pushed snow on top of them. Authorities said the 11-year-old and 9-year-old had gone outside Wednesday to build a snow fort in Newburgh, about 60 miles north of New York City. A snow plow operator clearing the lot by pushing snow over didn’t notice the boys on the other side of the pile.  ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT Investigators said the boys’ parents became alarmed late Wednesday evening when they didn’t come home. After a search turned up no sign of their sons, they called police.  Officials searching a snow bank at a health center nearby found the boys at around 2 a.m. Thursday, after an officer saw a shovel half buried. The officer took the shovel and started to dig, and saw a small boot. Others joined in, some digging with bare hands, and the …

    November 28, 2014 5:40 am
    0 Comments

Politics

  • Exclusive: Obama plan to ‘Power Africa’ gets off to a dim start


    JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – Barack Obama last year told a cheering crowd in Cape Town that a $7 billion plan to “Power Africa” would double electricity output on the world’s poorest continent and bring “light where currently there is darkness”. A year later, the U.S. president’s flagship project for Africa has already achieved 25 percent of its goal to deliver 10,000 megawatts of electricity and bring light to 20 million households and businesses, according to its annual report. But the five-year plan has not yet delivered the power. Power Africa has not measured its progress by counting actual megawatts added to the grid but promises of additional power made in deals it says it helped negotiate, according to sources inside the project and documents seen by Reuters. Some projects facilitated by Power Africa — a program operated by the U.S. aid agency USAID — were under way years before the scheme’s inception, others are still in …

    November 28, 2014 2:36 am
    0 Comments

Stocks

  • Black Friday on strike: Walmart workers vow big protests


    Shoppers won’t be the only ones lined up outside some Walmart stores on Black Friday. Some aggrieved Walmart workers and their advocates have a slew of grievances. And for the third year in a row, they will air them on one of the busiest shopping days: Black Friday. Protesters are expected to gather outside 1,600 Walmart (WMT) stores across the country as the retailer launches doorbuster deals. That would be more than ever before, according to organizers. Some demonstrations are planned for Wednesday, while others will take place on Thanksgiving Day or Black Friday. Among the bigger events are expected in Los Angeles, Washington D.C., Chicago, Tampa, Dallas, Denver and Sacramento. Walmart has 4,281 U.S. stores.   Some workers are expected to strike, walking off the job during their shift. They will be joined by teachers and other community leaders. The demonstrators are backed by groups like OUR Walmart, which has union ties. And they …

    November 28, 2014 5:40 am
    0 Comments

Sports

  • Williams appoint Susie Wolff as test driver


    LONDON (Reuters) – Susie Wolff will take part in two grand prix practice sessions next season in a new role of official test driver for Williams, the Formula One team said on Friday. Wolff, the British wife of Mercedes motorsport head Toto Wolff, has been development driver for the team for the past three seasons. The team said the 31-year-old Scot would also be taking part in two test days in 2015 as well as doing work in the factory simulator. Wolff drove in two free practice sessions this year, becoming the first female driver to take part in a grand prix weekend in 22 years. “This is another step in the right direction for me,” said Wolff, who will work with race drivers Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas. Williams finished third overall this season, their best performance since 2003. Brazilian Felipe Nasr, who was test and reserve driver this season, has left to join …

    November 28, 2014 5:40 am
    0 Comments

World News

  • Ebola test results ‘in 15 minutes’


    28 November 2014 Last updated at 10:13 By James Gallagher Health editor, BBC News website A 15-minute blood and saliva test for Ebola is to be trialled in Guinea, it has been announced. The solar-powered, portable laboratory should deliver results six times faster than tests currently used in West Africa. The researchers involved say faster diagnosis would increase the chances of survival and reduce transmission of the virus. The trial will take place at an Ebola treatment centre in Conakry, Guinea. Ebola is currently diagnosed by hunting for the virus’s genetic material in the blood of a patient. Continue reading the main story “Start Quote Researchers have considered how to make the test suitable for use in remote field hospitals, where resources are often in short supply” End Quote Dr Val Snewin Wellcome Trust But it requires dedicated laboratories that can keep the components of the test at very low temperatures. Patients in Conakry will …

    November 28, 2014 5:40 am
    0 Comments

Technology

  • YouTube Minecraft channel The Diamond Minecart gets a mobile app


    YouTube channel The Diamond Minecart is one of the most popular Minecraft-focused channels in the world, with 4.3 million subscribers and more than 1.6 billion lifetime views. Now there’s an app for that, released for iPhone and iPad by multi-channel network (MCN) Maker Studios, which has launched similar apps for gaming channels PewDiePie and The Yogscast in 2014. The app, which is free to download, serves up a feed of new and popular videos from the Diamond Minecart channel, which was launched in 2012 by gamer Daniel Middleton as a showcase for his Minecraft play-through videos. Fans can also personalise the app to focus on different shows within the channel, and share videos with friends on social networks. In its structure, it’s very similar to the PewDiePie app that Maker launched in late July. The Diamond Minecart is actually a recent addition to Maker’s roster of YouTube games channels, having joined its network in August. …

    November 28, 2014 2:37 am
    0 Comments

Science

  • Salamanders are a more abundant food source in forest ecosystems than previously thought


    Related images(click to enlarge) In the 1970s, ecologists published results from one of the first whole-forest ecosystem studies ever conducted in Hubbard Brook, New Hampshire. In the paper, scientists reported that salamanders represent one of the largest sources of biomass, or food, of all vertebrates in the forest landscape. Now, using new sampling and statistical techniques not available during the past study, researchers at the University of Missouri have estimated that the population of salamanders in forested regions of the Missouri Ozarks are 2-4 times higher than originally thought, and in other regions of the eastern U.S. may be on average 10 times higher. Scientists believe that acknowledging salamanders as one of the main food sources in forest ecosystems could help drive conservation efforts and forest management. “Our lab works to identify salamanders as an influential part of the forest ecosystem and food chain,” said Ray Semlitsch, Curators Professor of Biological Sciences in the College …

    November 28, 2014 2:59 am
    0 Comments

Health

  • ICRC seeks record $1.7 billion for humanitarian work in 2015


    LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) appealed on Thursday for a record 1.6 billion Swiss francs ($1.67 billion) to respond to humanitarian crises next year in Syria, South Sudan, Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia and other hotspots. The ICRC said its most costly operation in 2015 will be Syria, where more than three years of fighting have uprooted 7.2 million people inside the country and led 3.3 million to flee abroad, mainly to neighboring states like Lebanon and Jordan. The ICRC expects to spend 164 million Swiss francs ($170 million) in Syria alone. “We are witnessing new kinds of crises, in new combinations, often with a regional dimension. We are no longer simply facing traditional internal or international armed conflict,” ICRC President Peter Maurer said in a statement. “Gaining access and proximity to ever greater numbers of people in need while coping with increasingly severe security constraints is a fundamental …

    November 28, 2014 2:36 am
    0 Comments

Entertainment

  • Former Teen Mom 2 star Leah Messer’s troubles continue to worsen


    Teen Mom 2 fans, one of your favorite stars has quit the show Messer has been struggling to hold onto her marriage to husband Jeremy Calvert, and according to Radar Online, one of the reasons the reality TV star decided to end her time on the MTV show Teen Mom 2 is because she didn’t want the pressure of the show to worsen her already fragile marital situation. “Things are still rocky for them,” a friend of Messer, whose married name is now Calvert, revealed to the publication. “Leah is doing everything she can to keep her family together, including leaving reality TV. All the attention from the show played a hand in one failed marriage, and she’s not going to let that happen again.” Teen Mom 2‘s Leah Messer and her cryptic tweets have us worried However, if her husband’s cryptic Twitter messages are anything to go by, then divorce could be imminent. Jeremy …

    November 28, 2014 4:19 am
    0 Comments

Editorial

  • Thanksgiving: Cultivate an attitude of gratitude


    NATO soldiers have their Thanksgiving Day meals at the ISAF headquarters in Kabul, Afghanistan, Thursday, Nov. 27, 2014. This is the last Thanksgiving cerebration before the U.S. and NATO combat mission ends on Dec. 31 this year. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul) If Thomas Jefferson could be faulted for one thing in composing the Declaration of Independence, it might be his inclusion of the words “the pursuit of happiness” in the text. Happiness is a vapor that cannot be grasped; a temporary feeling based on transitory circumstances akin to the euphoria of a full-on sugar rush. Happiness is good for a time, but it cannot last. Life invariably intervenes. ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT So many seem so unthankful about so much these days. Turn on the TV or read a newspaper and you will find complainers. Democrats complain about Republicans and the reverse. The poor complain about the rich and the rich complain that they are being taxed too …

    November 27, 2014 2:19 pm
    0 Comments

Odd News

  • French farmers cry wolf over sheep killings


    PARIS (Reuters) – French farmers, who regularly bring livestock into Paris to punctuate their protests, drove some 250 sheep into the shadow of the Eiffel Tower on Thursday to highlight an unusual concern – that a growing wolf population is killing their flocks. Wolves were reintroduced to France in the 1990s under an international convention on wildlife conservation in Europe. There are now an estimated 300 wolves in the country and the number is growing each year. According to the French sheep organization (FNO), the number of animals they kill has risen too – by nearly two thirds since 2011 – and is likely to top 8,000 this year. “We are asking that wolves be removed from sheep breeding regions because they are incompatible with our work,” Michele Boudoin, secretary general of the French sheep organisation (FNO) said. She stressed that France’s “wolf plan”, which compensates farmers for sheep losses and pays for prevention measures …

    November 27, 2014 2:39 pm
    0 Comments