Category: jxdalhnp

  • Road to redemption

    first_imgRenaldo Balkman (34) and Justin Brownlee (32) get some pointers from veteran Dondon Hontiveros (left). —TRISTANTAMAYO/INQUIRER.NETThe seeds of redemption were planted over 12,000 kilometers away from Manila, at Palacio Municipal de Deportes San Pablo in Seville, Spain. Two players far from home sharing a short talk and a promise—I’ll help open doors for you, said one; I’ll win you a title, replied the other.On Wednesday night, in a far less impressive stadium and under the lights of a tournament with less prestige, signs of life sprouted from those seeds. It isn’t full bloom just yet—the extent of forgiveness Philippine basketball is willing to extend to Renaldo Balkman is something only time can tell. But at least, something pushed itself out of the soil, allowing the import who left in a veil of infamy to begin taking that road to redemption.ADVERTISEMENT OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ’a duplicitous move’ – Lacson “What happened years back was really an isolated incident, and at the end of the day no one’s perfect,” said Alab Pilipinas coach Jimmy Alapag. “We all make mistakes and he’s said numerous times he’s regretful of what happened. Hopefully this issue will be dead and he’ll be able to make a much better impression here in the Philippines.”Alapag opened the door for Balkman’s return, something that seemed implausible after the events of March 2013, when the former New York Knick shoved Petron (San Miguel Beer) teammate Ronald Tubid and choked Arwind Santos in a bizarre ending to a loss to Alaska during a PBA Commissioner’s Cup match.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crownSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkThat resulted in a P250,000 fine and a permanent ban from the league.But Alapag offered him a chance to play in Manila again when the two met in the 2014 World Cup in Spain, where Balkman’s Puerto Rico defeated Gilas Pilipinas, 77-73, in a Group B match. Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Redemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie Thompson Judy Ann’s 1st project for 2020 is giving her a ‘stomachache’ LATEST STORIES MOST READ Jiro Manio arrested for stabbing man in Marikina Balkman has the perfect partner in Brownlee as he begins the task of mending his image here. Now, he doesn’t need to look far to understand what it means to be loved by a basketball-crazy archipelago.Brownlee, who steered Barangay Ginebra, the PBA’s most popular squad, to back-to-back Governors’ Cup titles—the first of which broke a long title drought—was showered with the most iconic cheer in Philippine basketball right from the get-go.“That was very special,” said Brownlee of the “Gi-ne-bra!” chants that greeted him.“I know I’m here in Alab—this is a great team, a great organization and a great company, and everything,” added Brownlee who finished with 29 points, seven rebounds, and eight assists. “[But] it’s always going to feel great to hear that chant no matter where I am.”Balkman knows a title can earn him a semblance of that love. But for now, he is content with being welcomed with open arms.“It felt good, the reception, and I didn’t expect it. The past is the past,” said Balkman. “I did lots of things since then and tonight, it wasn’t on my mind, it wasn’t on my head. I just went out there to play basketball.”And play he did. Brownlee, highly instrumental in the victory, had a hand in all the points in an 8-0 run that gave Alab a 68-63 lead entering the fourth. He hit two triples and fed Balkman for a dunk to highlight the rally.But even he admitted how much of an impact Balkman made.“It was a great opportunity and an honor to be able to play for a guy like him,” said Brownlee. “He’s an intelligent player and playing with somebody like that with a lot of knowledge in basketball, and also a great guy, it’s a blessing for me and my career. I’ll definitely take advantage of that.”Alab later opened the fourth with a 12-3 run to build an 81-66 lead with Balkman capping off the spurt with a breakaway two-hand flush. Alforque, Lazaro book finals seatscenter_img Scottie Thompson also worthy of Finals MVP, thinks Cone Meralco ‘never the same’ after Almazan injury in PBA Finals Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View comments Steam emission over Taal’s main crater ‘steady’ for past 24 hours “When I saw him in Spain, he said ‘if you ever get to coaching and the door opens for me to come back to Manila, I’m willing to play for you,’” said Alapag.That door opened wide after a poor start by Alab Pilipinas in the Asean Basketball League—Alapag’s first foray into coaching. Needing a season reboot fast, Alapag hooked up with Balkman and brought in Barangay Ginebra’s Justin Brownlee to replace original imports Reggie Okosa and Ivan Johnson.On Wednesday night, at Filoil Arena, the pair showed their worth, leading Alab past Westports Malaysia, 90-79.“I played against him as a player, now he’s my coach. It’s a blessing for me to be given that chance,” said Balkman, who compiled 17 points, 11 rebounds, four steals and two blocks.“We talked about it a couple of years ago. He always told me that if he had a chance to coach me he would and that’s what happened. Right now, I’m still thanking him because he kept his promise so I’ll keep my promise of winning him a championship.”ADVERTISEMENT OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ’a duplicitous move’ – Lacson It was the first of many highlights Balkman hopes to put together. And if he assembles enough of them to push Alab Pilipinas to the title, he may just redeem himself sooner than he expected.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Brian Heruela arrival bolsters Phoenix backcourt, defenselast_img read more

  • David Silva set for final season at Man City

    first_img0Shares0000Final season: David Silva will leave Manchester City in 2020 © AFP / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASLONDON, United Kingdom, Jun 26 – Spanish midfielder David Silva has confirmed he will leave Manchester City at the end of next season when his contract expires.Silva is one of City’s most decorated players of all-time having won four Premier League titles, two FA Cups and four League Cups since joining from Valencia in 2010. He scored his 71st goal in 396 appearances so far for the English champions in the FA Cup final last month as City completed a first ever domestic treble in English football.However, the 33-year-old believes completing a decade in Manchester is the perfect time to step away.“This is the last one,” Silva told reporters in his native Gran Canaria. “Ten years for me is enough. It’s the perfect time for me.“Initially, City were talking about two years, but I decided to sign another one, so I finished at 10 years.“It completes the cycle. It’s a nice round figure. I can never see myself playing against City for another team. So 10 years – that’s it.”Silva missed chunks of City’s title-winning 2017/18 season to return to Spain where his pre-mature born son Mateo was being treated in hospital.Mateo has since recovered and was in attendance for City’s first home game of this season in August, when Silva scored in a 6-1 rout of Huddersfield.However, Silva has previously spoken of his desire to return to Spain for family reasons when his City career comes to an end.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

  • Paul Pogba signing: Man United v Real Madrid – what will decide his destination

    first_imgJose Mourinho faced the media on Tuesday for the first time as Manchester United boss and new signings were firmly on the agenda.Eric Bailly and Zlatan Ibrahimovic are the only two to have officially signed, although Mourinho insisted he had made three signings, with Borussia Dortmund’s Henrikh Mkhitaryan expected to be confirmed this week.The Portuguese said he wanted four signings, and with those three sealed, he and Ed Woodward are turning their attentions to the fourth.Mourinho’s teams have always been built on a strong spine and having already secured a centre back, an attacking midfielder and a striker, a central midfielder is his final piece in the puzzle.That midfielder is expected to be former youth product Paul Pogba for what could be a world-record fee.The Frenchman is expected to leave Juventus this summer amid interest from the Red Devils and Real Madrid, but who are the frontrunners? talkSPORT investigates. 3 3 Why it is unlikely …The lack of Champions League football is the reason United have to pay extra in wages and is also the reason Mats Hummels chose Bayern Munich over the Red Devils this summer. If Mourinho is able to persuade Pogba this absence from Europe’s premier competition would only be for a season, then the transfer suddenly becomes very realistic. Real Madrid:Why it is likely …Real Madrid seem the obvious choice for Pogba. They are the Champions League holders, the richest club in the world and boast arguably the most talented squad in Europe. Pogba would be the perfect ‘galactico’ signing this summer after a fine Euro 2016 with France. He would slot perfectly into a midfield triumvirate with Luka Modric and Toni Kroos and have the likes of Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo in front of him. There is also the lure of working under one of France’s greatest ever players in Zinedine Zidane.Why it is unlikely …There is also a lot of uncertainty around Madrid. Would they be willing to fork out a world-record transfer after being found guilty of receiving millions of pounds in illegal state funding? Furthermore, with a trigger-happy President like Florentino Perez, there is no guarantee how long Zidane would remain as boss for. If Pogba wants stability as he aims to progress to Ballon d’Or-winning level, MadridManchester United:Why it is likely …The Mourinho factor is a huge lure for prospective transfers with the majority of European players eager to play under such an illustrious manager. Manchester United have an embarrassment of riches and would not hesitate to break the transfer record currently held by Bale or offer wages higher than those earned by Wayne Rooney. Pogba is a former United player and knows the area, as well as speaking the language, and would surely settle quicker in Manchester than in Madrid. Pogba’s star is among the brightest in Europe right now and he would be the main man at United, even ahead of Ibrahimovic, given his age. At Madrid he, like Bale and the others, would have to live in the large shadow cast by Ronaldo. Paul Pogba has impressed for France in Euro 2016 3last_img read more

  • Snyder and Los Alamitos have simple plan

    first_img The teams could meet as early as the South Coast Tournament on Sept. 22 or Sept. 27 at Belmont Plaza Pool. Nothing personal, but at that point, their childhood ties will be cut. They won’t even make eye contact. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe top 10 theme park moments of 2019 “It’s kind of a pride thing to beat Wilson when they have all of their best guys,” Snyder said. “Last year, it would have been a great accomplishment to overcome Wilson.” But it wasn’t to be. The Bruins edged the Griffins 11-10 in double overtime on their way to another CIF Southern Section Division I title. When they meet again, McIntosh will likely be in the cage for Wilson. For the past two seasons, the senior has patiently waited his turn behind Chay Lapin, who was considered the best high school goalie in the country. “I obviously feel pressure when it comes down to it,” McIntosh said. “When I was on the bench, I got everyone fired up. That’s my way of (easing) the pressure. When the team isn’t playing (to its potential), I think it’s my job to hold things together and not let us get emotionally down.” The Bruins return a plethora of players from a year ago. It’s Clayton Snyder’s last year of high school water polo. And once again, leading the Los Alamitos High boys water polo team to the CIF Southern Section Division II title and beating Wilson are on his things-to-do list. This year, Snyder will have to go through his friend and Bruins goaltender Jacob McIntosh to upset Wilson. center_img Senior attackers Matt Sagehorn and Anthony Artukovich are National Age Group All-Americans, who will compete with the USA Junior National team at the Junior Worlds in Argentina in October. Senior 2-meter Charles Wright an All-CIF selection and Junior Olympics Honorable Mention All-American defenders Cody Walter and Scott Huntley and sharpshooter Kyle Wooten have the experience and talent to keep the Bruins afloat while Sagehorn and Artukovich are away. “Kyle does a great job. We are looking for him to step in a role of a counter player and tough defender as well as a shooter,” Wilson coach Tony Martinho said. The Griffins have a young team. “I am starting three freshman,” Los Al coach Dave Carlson said. “We might have a year where we take some lumps early on. We lost nine seniors. We have a lot of holes to fill. I have only two guys with crunch-time experience. I don’t know how the guys are going to respond to adversity. The freshman are going to face it the first month.” The Griffins, who topped Villa Park in the Division II final, are currently ranked second by CIF. “It’s based on what we did last year,” Carlson said. Freshmen Michael Delaney (goalie), Forrest Watkins (center-back) and Austin Trinkle (attacker) are a part of Los Alamitos’ youth movement. Here’s a closer look at this year’s water polo scene: MOORE LEAGUE Best team: Wilson (29-2) first place. League outlook: The Bruins are heavily favored to win their 30th league title and 18th consecutive crown and to win their fifth consecutive Division I crown and 11th overall to tie Newport Harbor for the most in history. Sagehorn is a returning All-CIF first teamer and will be surrounded by plenty of talent. Chase Gilmore and Scott LaBounty, whose brothers competed on championship squads, are among the seniors who add depth to the bench. … Poly High coach Scott Penttila has plenty of talent returning from last year’s team that edged Millikan for second place in league. After two games, junior 2-meter offense David Sodeberg leads the Jackrabbits (1-1) with 10 goals. Junior 2-meter defender Martin De Jong, junior goalie Duran Reid, senior attacker Justin Ward and sophomore attacker Billy Brightenburg are the core group of returnees. “I only graduated three seniors, and I think we can do it,” Penttila said of holding on to second place in league. … Millikan, which features senior attacker Brian Mattingly, has a new coach in Tim Fredericksen who takes over for Johnny Bega. In wins against Fountain Valley and St. John Bosco, Mattingly has tallied 12 goals. Senior attackers Brandon Larson and Rico Martinez, sophomore utility Scott Butler and senior goalie Dillon Wood will try to wrestle second place from Poly. … Lakewood coach Sean McWhorter has the most balanced Lancer team he has had in eight seasons. “We have a lot of seniors who are contributing in different ways,” he said. Junior attacker Josh Fisher (four goals vs. Warren) has been a pleasant surprise for the Lancers (4-2), who finished third at the Bell Gardens Tournament. Senior attackers Jose Guzman and Kyle Jasper, senior goalie Kyle Grieving and senior utility players Justin Palmer and Jacob Schuster are among Lakewood’s key players. SUNSET LEAGUE Best team: Esperanza. League outlook: Los Alamitos (25-6 last year) is the defending league and CIF-SS Division II champs. But the Griffins aren’t the same squad. Snyder, who has drawn considerable interest from UCLA and Pepperdine, and Jeff Tsim will have to carry much of the offensive load until the youngsters grow up. What makes the Griffins’ task even harder is that they compete in the toughest league in CIF-SS. Esperanza is expected to give Los Alamitos the most problems in defending its crown. Huntington Beach, Edison, Marina and Fountain Valley usually are among the toughest teams in Orange County. GABRIEL VALLEY LEAGUE Best team: Downey (21-9) first place. League outlook: There has already been a change at the top of the Vikings’ program. Jamie Whyte, who guided Downey to the SGVL title and to the quarterfinals of CIF-SS Division III a year ago, returned to Servite as an assistant, leaving Peter Muller in charge. Senior goalie Alan Nevarez, who made key saves down the stretch of the Vikings first-round playoff victory against Whittier last year, had 10 saves last Tuesday. Senior utility players Sean Feliciano and Jarrett Powers, junior 2-meter Patrick McCarthy and attackers David Correa and Ethan Klotzer are back to defend their league title. … Last season, Cerritos (20-6 last year) placed second in league competition. This season, senior utility Jan Michael Pineda (eight goals) and junior 2-meter offense Dan Biag (14) have the Dons off to a good start (5-1). Senior attacker Chris Kim, senior 2-meters Torrence Lee and John Chao and senior goalie Steve Laos are the supporting cast. “I am a little disappointed that we didn’t make the (CIF Division III) Top 10,” Cerritos coach Ray Contreras said. “We played a lot of Division I schools over the summer, and we are a much better team than we were last year. We have more experience and more patience with the ball. We should have a really good showing.” … Despite a 7-7 record last year, Whitney finished third in the SGVL and got an invitation to the playoffs. Coach Paul McManus has a solid group of returnees in senior 2-meter Marvin Cho, junior attackers Grant Shin and Raj Mehta, senior attacker Peter Nguyen and junior goalie Albert Song. Freshman utility Marvin Shin can play any position. … Two years removed from winning the SGVL title, Gahr has emerged from obscurity with an eight-man squad. Jerry Portillo, who coached the girls water polo team last year, has taken on the task turning the program into a contender again. Senior attacker Chris Villa, who competed for the Gladiators’ program two years ago, is the team’s lone experienced player. … There’s also a new coach at Warren. Joy O’Dowd, who served as assistant coach last year, took over for Justin Davis and is the Bears’ third coach in three seasons. Senior 2-meter Scott Solvyan and senior attacker Mark Wray are two players on the squad with three years of varsity experience. Junior 2-meter Ryan Gutierrez has club water polo experience. “The rest of my team are really, really green,” O’Dowd said. SERRA LEAGUE Best team: Servite League outlook: St. John Bosco coach Rob Smith is hoping the Braves will finally have something to show for all the hard work they have put in over the past four seasons. Seniors Justin Brown (goalie), Shane Fleming (2-meter), Scott Bender (2-meter), Andy Domngern (defender) and Adam O’Connor (defender) began their careers with Smith. They, along with the addition of freshman 2-meter Carl Sandstram, will have to buckle down on defense if they plan to upset Servite this season. “I’ve had this group since my first year, so they know what I expect,” Smith said. “Shane Fleming has five goals on the season. He has been the biggest surprise.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

  • Frustration over lack of progress for Mica homeowners

    first_imgPeople living in Mica-affected homes in Donegal are growing increasingly frustrated on the lack of progress on the redress scheme.Back in May, the Government pledged €20 million for a repair scheme in Donegal and Mayo. But campaigners say no real progress has been made since.Ann Owens Chairperson on the Mica Action Group is calling for every effort to be made by Donegal County Council to make the scheme a priority.  Ms Owens said:“After the initial elation felt when the scheme was approved at Cabinet level in May, we find ourselves once again in a position where the powers that be are dragging their heels and no evidence of any progress in the rolling out of this scheme is being illustrated.“Responsibility for the roll out of the mica scheme has been delegated to Donegal County Council (DCC) and we were given an assurance by Minister Joe McHugh in May that MAG would be invited to work with stakeholders from DCC to ensure that the needs of affected homeowners were taken into account due to our first-hand experience with those in the most urgent need.”Since then, Ms Owens said there has been little assurance on any progress. There is no time for delays, she said: “We need to see the fine details of the mica scheme published immediately and we need instructions for how homeowners can apply to get their homes fixed. We cannot accept further delays. “We would ask, if there really is a more pressing issue that needs to be addressed by Donegal County Council at the moment than this when Councillors, during the election campaign reported this to be the number one concern on the doorsteps.  We need to see every effort being made to prioritise the mica scheme without any further delay and we ask that DCC at the very least, confirm when the scheme will be rolled out and applications will be accepted. “We really don’t think this is too much to ask.”  Frustration over lack of progress for Mica homeowners was last modified: June 28th, 2019 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:mica redresslast_img read more

  • Get Drumstruck!

    first_imgBilled as the world’s first interactive drum theatre production, Drumstruck not only gives theatre audiences a taste of African drumming, but makes them part of the show too.After its hugely successful debut at the Liberty Theatre on the Square in February this year, it is back for a two-week run at the 1300-seat Spoornet State Theatre Opera House in Pretoria, to coincide with the UN World Summit on Sustainable Development.In a true celebration of African culture, organiser say Drumstruck offers audiencesthe “unique opportunity to become part of a show that is unlike any other: a show of criss-crossing southern and west African rhythms, a show of colliding, intersecting cultures, a show of stomping, clanging percussion, a show of heartstopping dance and movement, a show of hands”.This vibrant show is directed by Kathy-Jo Ross and features the exuberant Warren Lieberman, who launched the Drum Cafe drumming phenomenon, together with musical director Richard Carter, master drummer Munkie Ncapayi and a talented cast of traditional and urban African drummers, dancers and choristers.The Drum Cafe evolved from months of small, informal drumming circles in the lounge of Lieberman’s Joburg house every Tuesday evening. Lieberman opened his first Drum Cafe next to one of his hardware stores in Greenside, Johannesburg, and several branches followed. Before long, it had spread to Cape Town, London, Sydney and Kenya, and had a loyal following of drummers.As unlikely as the success of the Drum Cafe was, so is Lieberman an unlikely protagonist. He studied physics, applied maths and electrical engineering, dabbled briefly in the formal business sector, before realising that the world of hardware retail would never satisfy him.His Drum Cafes developed organically into one of South Africa’s most successful corporate entertainment companies, he adds, with big name clients. Its corporate division has expanded to cover a wide spectrum of events, from team building and conflict resolution to roadshows, conferences, product launches and promotions. The Drum Cafe boasts a client base profiling numerous top South African companies, including Investec Bank, Deloitte & Touche, Ernst & Young, M-Net, BMW and SAB.Drumstruck was born last year when Warren approached his childhood friend, Kathy-Jo Ross, a Wits Drama School graduate who had enjoyed a successful career as a performer in theatre, musicals and on radio. Says Ross: “It was the most exciting creative endeavour I had heard about in all my years of being in the theatre and I jumped at the chance of being involved.”Warren Lieberman and the Drumstruck cast (Photo: Drumstruck)The Drumstruck cast, led by the exuberant Warren Lieberman Lieberman says: “It happened through one of South Africa’s oldest and most intuitive group traditions: drumming. Today the Drum Cafe is synonymous with interactive modern day drumming, and has performed to well over 100 000 people around the world. In the last two and a half years it has grown from eight people to 24 in an unconventional set-up of talented performers and entrepreneurs with shared vision.”The progression from passive to interactive theatre is a natural one, he adds. “Some people go to the theatre purely to be entertained, some to escape from the stresses and strains of the world around them. Others go to the theatre to be confronted with their own worst fears and prejudices.“Rarely, if ever, do people go to the theatre for the most primal and compelling reason of them all – the natural, instinctive desire to be part of the show. Drumstruck addresses this need by bringing audiences into the show itself, allowing them to share the energy and excitement of an hour or two in the spotlight.”Other recent exciting projects include opening a music shop which offers the largest selection of African drums and world percussion instruments in South Africa; the launch of a CD, Mama, directed and choreographed by Wendy Oldfield; and the Drum Cafe’s African Music Agent (AMA) division, which aims to market, book, direct, choreograph and co-ordinate authentic African performers.Using the same informal methods that evolved in Lieberman’s lounge drum circle, everyone in the audience is given a small African drum and are encouraged to participate throughout the show. The infectious Lieberman teaches the audience a few simple drumming techniques, adds them into a series of musical riffs and before long even the most cynical person is happily drumming.But the show is also about investing in South African arts and culture through the empowerment of new South African performers, say the organisers. They have trained 12 talented former street buskers as performers and hope it plays a role in building the local music industry.Now, with established branches in London, Sydney and Kenya and a recent tour to Lithuania under their belt, the Drum Cafe’s international success has been a triumph for African culture.Source: Johannesburg World Summit 2002last_img read more

  • And the ‘Zero Energy Challenge’ Winner Is …

    first_imgAn energy-efficiency pilot program called Zero Energy Challenge, in which five Massachusetts builders competed to construct ultra-efficient market-rate and affordable homes, this week announced the Challenge winner.Bick Corsa Construction took the $25,000 top prize for a 1,152-sq.-ft. three-bedroom home the company completed last year in Montague for about $200,000. Occupied since December by its owners, Tina Stephens and Doug Clarke, the home has so far produced more electricity than it has used. The contest was sponsored by the state’s investor-owned electric utilities – National Grid, NSTAR, Unitil, and Western Mass Electric Company. A ceremony held on Monday at the Massachusetts State House featured distribution of a total of $50,000 in prize money (the second-place prize was $15,000, the third-place award $10,000) and a talk by Secretary Ian Bowles of the state’s Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs.Contest competitorsSecond place went to builder R. Carter Scott, of Transformations Inc., who worked with a price cap of $195,000 to construct a 1,232-sq.-ft. three-bedroom affordable home in Townsend that includes a well-insulated shell – R42 walls, R64 ceilings, and triple-pane windows – and a 5.7 kW PV system. The house earned a HERS verification rating of –2.30.Anne Perkins of Rural Development took third place for construction of a 1,392-sq.-ft. three-bedroom affordable attached home in Greenfield with a HERS rating of 18.7. The two-story building includes 3.42 kW PV system and solar thermal hot water.Fourth place went to engineer Mark Sevier for a 2,960-sq.-ft. market-rate three-bedroom in Sudbury that combines passive solar design with PV and solar hot water systems. The building’s HERS verification came in at 14.86.In fifth place was the nonprofit charity Bread & Roses Housing, whose 2,080-sq.-ft. affordable attached three-bedroom home in Lawrence is the first the organization has built to far surpass the Energy Star standard (a HERS maximum of 85) it has used for previous projects. Its contest home earned a HERS rating of 43.70.last_img read more

  • Never Home Alone

    first_imgEvery single one of us — those of us who lives indoors — is cohabiting with all manner of living uninvited guests: bacteria, fungi, insects, plants, and even rodents. And many of them appear “in nature” only inside our homes. Wouldn’t the healthiest home be the one purged of all these interlopers? The answer, according to Rob Dunn, is a resounding no. Rob Dunn, professor of applied ecology at North Carolina State University, has been researching this particular habitat — our homes — for most of his professional career. His new book, Never Home Alone: From Microbes to Millipedes, Camel Crickets, and Honeybees, the Natural History of Where We Live, is a fascinating research-driven story of academic adventure. I am serious: this book is the first nonfiction page-turner I have read in a very long time.RELATED ARTICLESIndoor Microbes and Human HealthAll About Indoor Air QualityCommon Sense On Mold Guests that play a role Chapter by chapter, Dunn makes the case for the important role all these guests play in indoor habitats. And that is key: we like to think of our homes as completely separate environments just for us, decoupled from the “wild.” Nothing could be further from the truth, and (as conveyed in Chapter 1, “Wonder”) no one has so relentlessly studied our indoor environments since Antony Leeuwenhoek: [Paraphrased from Dunn] – Sometime in 1676, Leeuwenhoek walked the block and half to the market to buy black pepper. He did not sprinkle the pepper on his food. He carefully added a third of an ounce to a teacup of water, checking on the peppercorns again and again. After three weeks, Leeuwenhoek made a pivotal decision: he examined the now cloudy water with a very crude microscope and saw “…an incredible number of very little animals of diverse kinds.” Unlike many scientists then and since, Leeuwenhoek focused on the world around him, mostly in his home and neighborhood: fleas, flies, fungi. More than four hundred and fifty years later, Dunn made a pivotal decision of his own: not to study alluring and exotic tropical or remote mountain habitats, but instead to study the humdrum home. Quotes that provide a glimpse of the book’s topics Everyone in the building community should be thanking Dunn for that decision. Here, chapter by chapter, are reasons why: Chapter 2: “The Hot Spring in the Basement.” This chapter is focused on thermally tolerant bacteria in tank water heaters and gene sequencing: “The results [of gene sequencing to identify all manner of species in samples] would prove surprising. They were surprising both in terms of the many species we found and in terms of those that were missing.” Chapter 4: “Absence as a Disease.” Chapter 4 is largely about a study of Amish and Hutterite children in the U.S.. The author discusses the practice of traditional agriculture by the former and industrial agriculture by the latter, and their drastically different incidence of inflammatory diseases, and immune systems: “Imagine there is a certain number of bacteria to which you need to be exposed to stay healthy… [T]he more plants and animals and soil you interact with, the more likely you will pick up some of those key bacteria. The fewer kinds you are exposed to, the less likely you get the right ones, the ones that activate your innate immune system…” Chapter 5: “Bathing in a Stream of Life.” This chapter is all about just what lives in our showerheads and how different the species are based on how “treated” the water is: “The showerhead is one of the simplest ecosystems in your house… The average showerhead has dozens…of species in it… some microbial strands that may make you sick; others may make you happy… “But what, then, should you do about your showerhead? We don’t know yet, but I’ll [Dunn] tell you what I think … I think that while some Mycobacterium species are beneficial the average species is a little bit of trouble, particularly for immune-compromised individuals. I think that these bad-news Mycobacterium species become more common the more we try to kill everything in our water, and in doing so, kill off Mycobacterium’s competition.” Chapter 6: “The Problem with Abundance.” This chapter focuses on biological growth associated with building materials and particularly research by Birgitte Andersen, an expert on the fungi of houses at the Technical University of Denmark: “[Andersen found that] … Neosartorya hiratsukae was on every single sheet of drywall, regardless of type, regardless of which store it came from, and regardless of which company it was made by.” [This fungus has recently been implicated in the complex mix of causes of Parkinson’s disease.] Chapter 7: “The Farsighted Ecologist.” This chapter at first seems to be about camel crickets and their long association with indoor habitats, but as the quote below reveals, it’s really about the nature of scientific endeavor: “What I’ve [Dunn] taken away from our work, so far… is that when you see a species in your home, you should study it. You should pay attention. Don’t assume someone else has already figured everything out.” Chapter 8: “The Problem with Cockroaches is Us.”  It’s pretty obvious what this chapter is about, but Dunn’s assessment of these truly despised insects is not as obvious: “Whatever the reason we don’t like them, we really don’t have that much to fear from them. German cockroaches can carry pathogens, it is true, but not any more so than your neighbors or children carry them. Also, no cases have yet been documented in which someone has actually gotten sick from a pathogen spread by a cockroach, whereas people get sick from pathogens spread by other humans.” An indoor garden Every chapter in this book is a revelation about where we live, who we live with, and their roles in our health and wellbeing. Rob Dunn’s work can be summed up with this quote from Chapter 3:“What we really want in our homes is a kind of garden. In a garden you kill the weeds and pests, but you take care of the diverse species you are trying to grow.” Maybe Taunton Press can work with Dunn on merging Fine Homebuilding with Fine Gardening, using GBA to cultivate healthier approaches to how we think and act on indoor environmental quality. Read this book; you may never enjoy learning quite as much.   In addition to acting as GBA’s technical director, Peter Yost is the Vice President for Technical Services at BuildingGreen in Brattleboro, Vermont. On January 1, 2019, Yost will bid BuildingGreen adieu and open his new consulting company, Building-Wright, in Brattleboro, Vermont. He has been building, researching, teaching, writing, and consulting on high-performance homes for more than twenty years. An experienced trainer and consultant, he’s been recognized as NAHB Educator of the Year. Do you have a building science puzzle? Contact Pete here.last_img read more

  • The International Trade Commission Raises Stakes In Apple-Samsung Cold War

    first_imgTags:#Apple#Patents#Samsung The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology Related Posts Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfacescenter_img What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … The threat of nuclear deterrence and mutually assured destruction have kept countries like the United Statea, China and Russia (including the former Soviet Union) from blowing each other to smithereens for the last 60 years or so. Too bad mutually assured destruction does not seem to work between Apple and Samsung.The global patent battle between the two mobile manufacturing behemoths is not getting any simpler. The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) is now getting involved an old decision made by a trade judge in September that said that Apple did not impinge on four specific patents that Samsung had accused of iPhone maker of infringing on in a suit filed in June 2011. The ITC will review the case and the trade judge’s assertions and issue a final verdict on the case in January 2013.Could iPhone Imports Be Banned?The decision by the ITC to step into the prior ruling is not really a surprise. The ITC loves to stick its nose in just about everything these days, especially when it comes to patent arguments between large mobile manufacturers that could affect imports of the devices. The key thing to know is that when the ITC gets involved there is a danger of infringing devices receiving import bans (at least temporarily). If the ITC rules in favor of Samsung there is a possibility that certain Apple devices, like the iPhone 3GS, 4, 4S, iPad 2 and the iPod would face import bans into the United States. Granted, those are all older Apple products, but the company has increasingly relied on its long tail of products to penetrate the lower end of the smartphone and tablet market. For instance, when Apple released the new, fourth-generation iPad earlier this month, it discontinued the “newer” third-generation iPad while keeping the iPad 2 on the market at a discounted price. The same goes for the iPhones 4/4S, which Apple relies on to serve consumers at the bottom of the smartphone market. Global Patent MessThe global patent systems is a large, convoluted web of lawsuits and injunctions, trials and settlements. Apple recently reached a settlement with HTC on a 10-year agreement where Apple would not sue HTC or request ITC injunctions while HTC will pay Apple a licensing fee. A similar agreement may be reached between Apple and Motorola, and Microsoft already has design and patent agreements with Cupertino. But Apple and Samsung have both said they are not willing to settle with each other. Confused yet? It is very difficult to keep up with the blow-by-blow of the global patent battles, especially between the two smartphone superpowers: Samsung and Apple.Mutually Assured Destruction?To put it in Cold War terms, Apple and Samsung represent the U.S. and the Soviet Union as superpowers with spheres of influence spanning the globe. Instead of nuclear weapons, the deterrents are patents. The role of the United Nations (which is supposed to keep the peace and determine fair practices worldwide) is filled by the ITC and global courts.But that’s as far the analogy goes. Unlike the U.N., the ITC has become an active player along with the superpowers – determining if the patents will be successful in blocking devices from reaching the market. The danger here is that, instead of preventing mutually assured destruction between Apple and Samsung, the ITC will enable it. For instance, what if the ITC rules on four specific patents in one case in favor of Apple and then in favor of Samsung in another? Would that create an import ban on both companies? It might seem far-fetched, but it is a distinct possibility. No Winners In This WarWho loses in all of this? Well, as in nuclear war, pretty much everybody.Samsung and Apple investors, innovators, application developers are all losers if Apple and Samsung are able to use patents to block each other’s products. n the various patent cases. Most of all, though, consumers get the short end of the stick.Heading into this holiday shopping season, the competitive smartphone market has created a stunning selection of amazingly powerful devices for consumers looking for new smartphones and tablets. The patent system, the ITC and the global war between the manufacturers threatens that choice.  dan rowinskilast_img read more

  • Study hints that wearables are terrible at counting calories, just like their users

    first_imgHow Myia Health’s Partnership with Mercy Virtua… Ryan Matthew Pierson Tags:#Apple#Basis Peak#Fitbit#fitness trackers#Internet of Things#IoT#wearables Can IoT Bridge The Gaps In Modern Mental Health… Related Posts center_img 8 Unusual Ideas for a Dentistry Business FDA Extends Collaboration on Living Heart Proje… A new study out of Stanford measured the accuracy of seven wristband activity monitors and found that while six out of seven wearables measured heart rate accurately, none of them were able to accurately measure calories burned.The study involved 60 volunteers from a larger pool, selected specifically to represent a diverse set of subjects. These participants included 31 women and 29 men of various skin color, body type, etc.Participants were asked to wear these various wrist-mounted devices while undergoing tasks such as walking, running, cycling, and sitting.How fitness trackers are good…The fitness trackers examined in the study include:Apple WatchBasis PeakFitbit SurgeMicrosoft BandMio Alpha 2PulseOnSamsung Gear S2The devices in this study did a fairly good job of monitoring the participant’s heart rate. In fact, six of the devices measured heart rates to under a 5% median error rate during walking and cycling while the Samsung Gear S2 scored a slightly less stunning 5.1%.A 5% variance is something medical professionals can work with. “For a lay user, in a non-medical setting, we want to keep that error under 10 percent,” Anna Shcherbina, one of the authors of the paper, said.…and how fitness trackers are badWhile the seven fitness trackers featured in the study did a pretty good job at keeping up with participant’s heart rate, the error rate in calculating caloric expenditure was a different story.Out of the seven devices tested, the most accurate one was off by 27.4%. That honor went to the Fitbit Surge.The least accurate device of the bunch was the PulseOn which with a stunning error rate of 92.6%.This study shows that fitness trackers, as much as we rely on them to give us at least mostly accurate data, may not be giving us a true account of our activity at all. Users rely on these devices to let them know when they have hit their goals on steps, heart rate, and caloric burn.If this research is accurate, at least one of these three measurements should be taken with a grain of salt.last_img read more