Daffodil Days, Harvard team up to fight cancer

first_imgThe first flower of spring, the daffodil has long been a symbol of hope and renewal. It has also become a powerful tool in the American Cancer Society’s efforts to treat patients.Beginning this month, Harvard will celebrate its 21st year as a key participant in the annual Daffodil Days fundraiser. Faculty, staff, and students can order the bright bouquets of 10 stems for $10 each, or purchase a bouquet of daffodils plus a limited edition, collectible Boyds Bear for $25. The last day to purchase items is Feb. 29.On March 17, University Mail Services will deliver the bouquets and bears to more than 100 drop-off points and five local hospitals.Daffodil Days at Harvard attributes its success to the past leadership of Rita Corkery, a former associate director of Community Affairs and a survivor of breast cancer who initiated the program at the University in 1988, and, more recently, to Carole Lee, a former department administrator for Government, Community and Public Affairs who retired from the University in August 2002. Both women helped to get the program off the ground and brought it to the success that it is today.The first year, sales reached $2,500. In 2007, Harvard staff, faculty, and students purchased 5,400 bouquets and 231 bears to top sales at more than $45,000, earning Harvard the distinction of being the second highest seller in New England. Since the event’s inception, total contributions to the American Cancer Society have been more than $475,000.Harvard’s top sellers for 2007 included Maura Kelley from the Law School ($3,341), Peter Conlin from the Development Office ($3,333), and Martha Foley from the Kennedy School ($3,041).To locate your departmental coordinator or to volunteer, contact Julie Russell in the Office of Community and Public Affairs at (617) 495-4955 or julie_russell@harvard.edu.last_img read more

New Fire Chief Saves Life at Marathon

first_imgPHILADELPHIA — A woman in the news late last week because she was the first woman promoted to Philadelphia Fire Chief is back in the news. This time, she is making headlines for saving a life at the Philadelphia Marathon.Check out the rest of the story.last_img

Inflation? Some Items That Actually Cost Less

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreInflation may be climbing faster than the humidity level, but there are still some things that actually cost less than they did a year ago. Amid all the headlines about soaring energy and food prices, many consumers may not notice that they’re getting a break on some items they buy.(Read the CNBC report that names the lower priced items, like electronics, clothes, toys hotel rooms and theme parks)AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMorelast_img

Kestrel lightens up with 625g Legend SL, faster tri, aero & disc brake endurance…

first_imgKestrel has an all-new road look this year, with wide-ranging bikes. The slick 5000 SL tri bike slides back from 2017, while the all-new ultralight Legend SL should make a killer climber’s ride. Then the Talon X scales wind cheating back to aero road, and Kestrel finally joins the endurance disc brake road game with a new RT-1100.Kestrel Legend SL ultra-light carbon road bikeKestrel has been a carbon road bike pioneer since their first all-carbon bike back in 1987. A lot has changed since then, so it’s nice to see them at the leading edge again with their new 625g Legend SL frame. That name has adorned their ultra light road bike for five years, but now the bike sheds a whopping 20% of its weight since the last iteration.To make their lightest ever frame, Kestrel developed a unique new one-piece carbon construction production technique that eliminated the joints between frame segments to shed much of that weight. While making assembly of the frame more labor intensive, Kestrel said it yields a better ride quality while getting weight low with their highest 800K ultra high modulus fibers.Tech detailsThe new bike features a reshaped boxy downtube & taller chainstays around the new PF30 BB for improved drivetrain stiffness & efficiency over the last generation of the bike. It also gets a new, lighter full carbon 1.5″ tapered steerer fork for updated handling. At the same time thinned seat stays, and the move to a 27.2mm post are meant to provide ample comfort for long rides.Pricing & AvailabilityThe ultralight Legend SL is available for $9000 in a super premium carbon/red finished eTap build weighing just 6.22kg/13.7lb. That gets you the light frame and wireless electronic Red groupset, plus Zipp 202 Firecrest carbon clinchers, Zipp Service Course SL cockpit & a carbon-railed Prologo Zero saddle.Or there is a much cheaper, and UCI race weight limit friendly Dura-Ace mechanical build in satin blue at $4300 and 6.82kg/15lb with Oval Concepts alloy wheels. A black Ultegra mechanical build for just $2800 and only 7.11kg/15.66lb rounds out the bike build options. All share the same 625g frame and 310g fork, and are in five sizes (XS 48cm – XL 60cm).RT-1100 carbon disc brake endurance road bikeThe RT-1100 is probably the biggest shift for Kestrel, as it’s their first foray into disc brakes on the all-day endurance road bike segment, away from their typical light or aero focus. Both of those are still touched on though, as the RT-1100 is built with the same Kestrel Super Light (KSL) ultra hi-mod carbon as the Legend, and aero tube optimizations based on the Talon X (below), albeit with a more conventional multi-piece construction.As the only disc brake road bike in their line, the RT-1100 gets geometry geared towards longer rides, with a taller headtube and more slack angles, plus an overall longer, more stable wheelbase. It features 12mm thru-axles, flat mount discs, and is spec’ed with 28mm tires. It shares the PF30 BB and modular internal routing, but gets an aero shaped seatpost with a hidden wedge-style clamp.The RT-1100 still gets a top-shelf $5000 SRAM Red eTap build with tubeless alloy wheels to come in at 7.8kg/17.18lb. Or you can opt for more affordable $4000 Dura-Ace (7.9kg), $2800 Ultegra (8.2kg), or $2500 105 (8.7kg) builds, each with mechanical shifting and hydraulic disc brakes in a five size range.Talon X carbon aero road bikeThe Talon X is Kestrel’s updated aero road bike for 2018, now built with the same top KSL ultra hi-mod carbon. The bike adapts triathlon-inspired aero profiling to the road for a bike actually targeted as a serious triathlete’s training bike. That gives it an aero shaped fork, fork crown-frame transition, aero downtube, and deep wheel cutout up to the dropped, wide-set seatstays.Kestrel developed unique tubes for each of the five frame sizes to adapt diameter, aero shaping, and layup to ensure ideal ride characteristics no matter the rider size. The Talon X features direct mount brakes, with the rear tucked behind the PF30 bottom bracket, and a reversible aero seatpost.The Talon X is available only in Shimano complete bikes, including $3800 Dura-Ace (7.7kg), $2300 Ultegra (8.4kg) & $1800 105 (8.33kg) builds. There is also a $1700 105 Tri build with aero bars for the budding triathlete.5000 SL carbon triathlon bikeThe last of the new-ish ‘road’ bikes from Kestrel is their proper triathlon race bike – the 5000 SL. Released last year, it is a top seller offering 30 years of carbon, wind cheating tech in a package that is both race-ready and relatively attainable.It hits all of the modern tri bike high points – integrated ‘external steerer’ fork, insanely deep aerofoil tube profiles, dropped & wide-set seatstays, fully enclosed brakes front & rear, hidden clamp aero seatpost with massive fore-aft saddle adjustability, modular aero base bar compatibility and internal cable routing behind the stem.On top of that, it’s the fastest bike Kestrel has ever made. The 5000 SL is available in three build specs and five sizes (XS-XL). The premium bike again specs SRAM Red eTap again, combined with deep, tubeless Oval Concepts carbon wheels for a $7500 price tag and a weight of 8.72kg. A $4800 Ultegra Di2 build and a $3800 Ultegra mechanical build yield more affordable complete bikes adding only a couple hundred grams each, still with carbon wheels but alloy braking surfaces.KestrelBicycles.comlast_img read more

VFCU collects over 6,000 lbs of food for local food shelf

first_imgVermont Business Magazine On Saturday, November 19, Vermont Federal Credit Union was the presenting sponsor of the Feed Your Neighbor Food Drive to benefit the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf. Vermont Federal joined radio stations 99.9 The Buzz and 106.7 WIZN at Costco in Colchester, from 10 AM to 4 PM, to support the Feed Your Neighbor Food Drive. Credit Union staff spent the day collecting non-perishable food items as well as cash donations, to benefit the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf. Volunteers provided suggested items to donate and those who contributed received reusable Vermont Federal tote bags as a thank you.VFCU photo of Jean Giard helping out.This year’s food drive raised 4,096 pounds of food and $736.60 in cash, equating to 2,209.80 additional pounds of food for a total of 6,305.8 pounds donated.“The annual Feed Your Neighbor Food Drive is critical for our organization as we work to make sure that all of our neighbors have the opportunity to share a full Thanksgiving meal with their loved ones,” said Kelly Saunders, Development Director at the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf. Saunders added, “We are so grateful for the support of the event sponsors, volunteers and community members whose generosity has made this event such a success.”The Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf works to alleviate hunger by feeding people and cultivating opportunities. As the largest direct service emergency food provider in Vermont, the Food Shelf serves approximately 11,000 people every year. You can learn more about the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf by visiting www.feedingchittenden.org(link is external).Vermont Federal is a $469 million-plus financial institution, with six locations currently serving over 36,000 members. Members are part of a cooperative, meaning they share ownership in the Credit Union and elect a volunteer board of directors. Vermont Federal Credit Union provides membership to anyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in Chittenden, Grand Isle, Lamoille, Franklin, Washington, or Addison Counties in Vermont. Vermont Federal Credit Union is committed to providing support to the communities it serves and to make a decided difference in the lives of its members and other Vermonters.  For more information about Vermont Federal Credit Union, call (888) 252-0202, visitwww.vermontfederal.org(link is external), or find us on Facebook(link is external).Source: Burlington, VT – Vermont Federal Credit Union 11.30.2016,Yeslast_img read more

Kids own up to ownership

first_imgScienceNews:Young children are possessed by possessions. Preschoolers argue about what belongs to whom with annoying regularity, a habit that might suggest limited appreciation of what it means to own something.But it’s actually just the opposite, psychologist Ori Friedman of the University of Waterloo in Canada reported on May 28 at the Association for Psychological Science annual meeting. At ages 4 and 5, youngsters value a person’s ownership rights — say, to a crayon — far more strongly than adults do, Friedman and psychology graduate student Karen Neary found.Rather than being learned from parents, a concept of property rights may automatically grow out of 2- to 3-year-olds’ ideas about bodily rights, such as assuming that another person can’t touch or control one’s body for no reason, Friedman proposed.Read more: ScienceNews More of our Members in the Media >last_img read more

The Source of Bad Writing

first_imgThe Wall Street Journal: Why is so much writing so bad? Why is it so hard to understand a government form, or an academic article or the instructions for setting up a wireless home network?The most popular explanation is that opaque prose is a deliberate choice. Bureaucrats insist on gibberish to cover their anatomy. Plaid-clad tech writers get their revenge on the jocks who kicked sand in their faces and the girls who turned them down for dates. Pseudo-intellectuals spout obscure verbiage to hide the fact that they have nothing to say, hoping to bamboozle their audiences with highfalutin gobbledygook.But the bamboozlement theory makes it too easy to demonize other people while letting ourselves off the hook. In explaining any human shortcoming, the first tool I reach for is Hanlon’s Razor: Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity. The kind of stupidity I have in mind has nothing to do with ignorance or low IQ; in fact, it’s often the brightest and best informed who suffer the most from it.I once attended a lecture on biology addressed to a large general audience at a conference on technology, entertainment and design. The lecture was also being filmed for distribution over the Internet to millions of other laypeople. The speaker was an eminent biologist who had been invited to explain his recent breakthrough in the structure of DNA. He launched into a jargon-packed technical presentation that was geared to his fellow molecular biologists, and it was immediately apparent to everyone in the room that none of them understood a word and he was wasting their time. Apparent to everyone, that is, except the eminent biologist. When the host interrupted and asked him to explain the work more clearly, he seemed genuinely surprised and not a little annoyed. This is the kind of stupidity I am talking about.Read the whole story: The Wall Street Journal More of our Members in the Media >last_img read more

Promotional tourist film Dubrovnik & Time awarded for the eighth time

first_imgAnother prestigious award came for the film “Dubrovnik & Time” from Poland, with the 11th FilmAT – Film, Art & Tourism Festival Poland, which is one of the most important film festivals in the field of tourism, ecology and art in the world.The promotional tourist film DUBROVNIK & TIME has won as many as eight important awards since its presentation at the beginning of March. The last one was awarded to him in the Polish city of Lublin, at the eleventh FilmAT festival as the best short (less than 5 minutes) promotional film about the city. The screening of the film “Dubrovnik & Time” arouses the enthusiasm of the viewers with each screening, and the confirmation of its quality has so far won important awards at international film festivals.DUBROVNIK TOURISM 2016 from Readmore Films on Vimeo.last_img read more

New study suggests 5 decades’ worth of psychology research on victim derogation could be flawed

first_imgLinkedIn Share on Facebook Pinterest Share “What struck me most was how some people around me responded to those scenes of innocent victimization not with empathy, but with victim blaming and derogation. I was then arrested and tortured myself and was further shocked when, after being released, members of my own family blamed me for bringing this to myself. Consequently, I became curious about what factors play into how people respond to innocent victims.”In the study, 100 undergraduate students watched five short videos showing the suffering of innocent victims, such as a scene depicting a call from a 9/11 victim before the collapse of the Twin Towers. After watching each video, the participants then completed assessments of victim derogation and negative emotions. After watching all five videos, the participants completed questionnaires on just-world beliefs and emotion avoidance.The researchers found that higher levels of negative emotions were associated with reduced victim derogation among participants with a lower tendency to avoid their emotions. “Our findings suggest that when individuals empathize with victims by vicariously experiencing their distress, they may be less likely to derogate them,” the researchers wrote in their study.Beliefs in a just world, on the other hand, were unrelated to victim derogation. In other words, people who agreed with statements such as “People usually receive the outcomes that they deserve” were not more likely to derogate the victims.“For more than 5 decades, the phenomena of victim blaming and derogation have been explained with just-world theory, which posits that beliefs about a just-world underlie these phenomena. The findings in our study challenge just-world theory and suggest that emotional factors such as empathy and emotion avoidance may play a more important role than beliefs in explaining victim blaming,” Ash told PsyPost.But the study — like all research — includes some limitations.“This is a preliminary study. It was cross-sectional and correlational in nature and any causal inferences should be made with caution. Future directions include experimentally manipulating empathy and emotion avoidance to further clarify the roles of negative emotions and emotion avoidance in victim derogation,” Ash explained.“The study suggests an important methodological flaw in the way psychological studies are conducted. Previous studies on victim-blaming and derogation had used written vignettes that may not have approximated real-life very well. By contrast, our study shows that when we used emotionally-arousing videos that more accurately simulated real-life, just-world beliefs had no effect on victim-blaming/derogation.”“Our findings suggest that, given the empirical evidence showing that emotions strongly contribute to behavior, psychological studies should use more emotionally-arousing stimuli, include emotional variables in their statistical models, and strive to approximate real-life as much as possible,” Ash added.The study, “Negative emotions and emotion avoidance in victim derogation“, was authored by Jude Ash and K. Lira Yoon.(Photo credit: Anthony Gale)center_img New research published in Personality and Individual Differences provides evidence that negative emotions and emotion avoidance play an important role in victim derogation.Victim derogation describes the phenomenon in which innocent victims of suffering are perceived as having less positive traits. Previous theories have held that this negative bias towards victims is used to maintain the belief that the world is fundamentally fair. But the new study suggest that this is not always the case.“In 2011, I was involved in the Syrian nonviolent movement calling for democracy and human rights. During the uprising, videos flooded YouTube showing unarmed protestors shot in cold blood and children tortured to death,” said study author Jude Ash, a PhD student at the University of Notre Dame Share on Twitter Emaillast_img read more

How The Hen House Turns: More Horse Sense

first_imgBy CARY NEEPERFormerly of Los Alamos For my education committee presentation last summer I found YouTube videos of octopuses escaping traps, cuttlefish antics, elaborate squirrel challenges set up gradually in people’s backyards, ravens recognizing masks and faking the hiding of food, dogs responding to spoken English, parrots doing tricks and vocalizations, and the gorilla Koko’s accomplishments. When they have encountered humans and human artifacts, animals of all kinds have continued to learn from their interactions. In our cities, urban birds (cockatoos and stone martins, jays, ravens and pigeons ) have settled in. My favorite example is the famous picture of bear cubs enjoying a swing set in someone’s backyard. In Colorado Springs Sue Dickerson captured views of a skunk at 4 a.m. using a rock as a tool to break the ice in the frozen water dish she had set out. Also reported in the article are the photos of an Eurasian Nuthatch using a piece of wool to try to lift up a patch of willow tree bark. Groupers and octopuses work together to hunt fish. All kinds of fighting males — from fish to giraffes — assess their chances before fighting for mates. Ground squirrels have been noted threatening with stones and waving their tales to warn off rattlesnakes. It makes sense that animals have survived in the wild by using their common sense and experience in order to win mates and find food. New information is pouring into social media from amateur photographers with motion-activated cameras.center_img We are learning more and more about how closely we are knit into the living web of life on earth. The latest wake-up call comes from the “Notes From Earth” in Discover Magazine’s article “Wildlife” by Nancy Averett. Science News.org Aug. 17 recorded whispering between whale moms and calves in the shallows where orcas couldn’t hear them. Of course we remember the remarkable canine sense of smell that we humans have put to good use. Most amazing, we have learned recently that trees use chemicals to exchange help and information. It’s just a little alarming to realize that we are not alone in our cognizance. But it is also exciting — and challenging to realize that we are truly not alone in the struggle to maintain this beautiful planet as a haven for all kinds of life that both depend on each other, yet interact, as they must, to survive. Turkey Bear and Lucy. CourtesyCary Neeperlast_img read more