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Ayman's blog

LONDON (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Theresa May`s Conservative party holds an 11 point lead over the Labour opposition, a poll by ORB for the Sunday Telegraph said, showing a tighter race ahead of June`s election than other pollsters.
ISTANBUL/ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey on Saturday expelled more than 3,900 people from the civil service and military as threats to national security, in the second major purge since President Tayyip Erdogan was granted sweeping new powers.
HAVANA (Reuters) - A military airplane crashed into a mountain in Cuba`s north-western region of Artemisa on Saturday morning, killing all eight personnel on board, the Ministry of Revolutionary Armed Forces said.

Google employee headphones

Where do business students want to work these days?

To find out, Universum, a global research and advisory firm, surveyed 81,102 students from 359 universities in the US about their views on employers.

Out of those respondents, 26,809 were studying business.

Universum ranked a number of well-known companies (and a few governmental agencies), based on the percentage of business students who reported that they`d want to work for the organization.

Here are the top 15 organizations that business students have their eyes on:

SEE ALSO: The 5 best fields for recent grads to find a job right now

15. Microsoft

Microsoft is an American tech company based in Redmond, California.

Percentage of business students who want to work there: 6.16%



14. Patagonia

Patagonia is an outdoor clothing brand that was founded in 1973.

Percentage of business students who want to work there: 6.17%



13. PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers)

One of the "Big Four" accounting firms, PwC is based in London.

Percentage of business students who want to work there: 6.61%



See the rest of the story at Business Insider
BEIRUT (Reuters) - Eight Syria Civil Defence workers died on Saturday when an air strike hit their office in northern Hama province, the rescue service said on its Twitter page.
LONDON (Reuters) - President Hassan Rouhani told Iranians on Saturday they could face greater authoritarianism if they replace him with a hardline rival in May`s election.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. service member died of wounds sustained in the explosion of an explosive device outside the northern Iraqi city of Mosul on Saturday, the U.S.-led military coalition said.

Gabrielle Rubin is the founder of femaleawareness.com and a renowned expert in self defense. In this video, she shares some of her insights on how to properly defend yourself when pinned down to the ground.

Follow Tech Insider: On Facebook

Join the conversation about this story »

BERLIN (Reuters) - The leader of Germany`s Free Democrats (FDP) said on Saturday his party was confident of returning to parliament in September and eager to put its pro-business stamp on the next government - whether with Angela Merkel`s conservatives or the Social Democrats.
LONDON (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Theresa May`s governing Conservative party has a 17 point lead over Labour, an Opinium poll showed on Saturday, slightly down from last week as support for smaller parties slipped.

us mexico border  1950s

A central promise of Donald Trump`s presidential campaign was a 55-foot-tall, 2,000-mile-long wall that he pledged to build along the US-Mexico border. Now, 100 days into his presidency, the Trump administration is trying to figure out how to pay for it.

Earlier this week, White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Trump was still determined to make Mexico foot the wall`s estimated 21.6 billion bill, despite the country`s vow that it will never pay for it. Spicer also said American tax dollars may go toward the wall`s construction.

"The wall`s going to get built, folks," Trump reiterated on April 25.

The goal of establishing a firm boundary to separate the US from Mexico is nothing new. American presidential administrations have been tightening security along the border for around a century.

Though the divide was formally established in 1824, the US didn`t launch its official Border Patrol until 1924. Inspection and holding stations were created after that, followed by the construction of miles of fences with barbed wire and steel barriers over the next few decades.

Take a look back at the history of the US-Mexico border below.

SEE ALSO: A group of engineers just submitted this incredible proposal for Trump`s border `wall` that`s actually a 15 billion hyperloop

The US established an official border patrol in 1924 with the goal of securing the US-Mexico border. In the photo below, American guards are patting down Mexicans who wish to enter the US.



The Mexicali border station (pictured below in 1929) was surrounded by a tall fence. Cars lined up to cross into California.



Much like today, people coming from Mexico were required to open their bags and suitcases at the border. In this 1937 photo, an agent inspects the possessions of shoppers going from Juarez, Mexico to El Paso, Texas.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

drinking cocktail dog woman outdoors unsplash

  • Several stories linking diet soda and sugary drinks with dementia have gone viral.
  • While they`re based on two well-done scientific studies, they don`t tell you the full story.
  • Before you clean out your fridge, you should know that the studies found a link between the two things — they did not find that one thing causes the other.
  • Read on to find out whether diet or regular is better for your health.

If you`re reading this, chances are you`ve heard one or two scary-sounding stories about sweet drinks and brain health.

Either you heard that artificially-sweetened diet drinks cause dementia or that conventionally-sweetened ones shrink your brain. It all comes down to two studies published in two different reputable health journals.

Sounds pretty terrifying, right? Only there`s a small problem. It`s still too early to say whether any sweet drink — whether it`s artificially sweetened diet soda or plain old sugary grape juice — actually causes the brain issues that the researchers observed. Why?

Before you raid the fridge, there are some things you should know about how the studies were done and what the researchers who did them actually found.

First, both studies were done by some of the same researchers, including the lead scientist, Boston University neurologist Matthew Pase. For the first study, published in the beginning of March in a well-regarded Alzheimer’s journal, Pase and his team concluded that sugary drinks were linked with brain shrinkage. For the second, published at the end of April in a different well-regarded heart journal, the team found a link between diet drinks and dementia.

At this point, you might be ready to throw up your hands and decide that all you can safely drink is water. Not so fast.

The problem with observing

If you`ve ever watched the show "Fringe," you`re familiar with a group of characters called The Observers. (If you haven`t seen the show, no worries. This will all make sense soon.) The Observers know what`s going to happen in the future and what`s happened in the past. So, even if they are watching something tragic unfold in real time — like a child dying, for example — they are powerless to change it. They can only watch and observe.

Observer FringeBoth of the studies on sweet drinks and brain health fall into a category of research known as observational studies. Observational studies can tell us if there`s a connection between two things — such as smoking marijuana and having anxiety — but they can`t tell us if one thing necessarily causes the other.

In many cases, a link that researchers observe between two things is later found to be caused by an external thing that no one was accounting for. In the marijuana example, some researchers have suggested that people who deal with anxiety may simply be more likely to use cannabis than people who don`t. So instead of cannabis causing anxiety, what`s really going on is that people with anxiety are using more cannabis than people without it. (The science is still out on this one, in case you were wondering.)

For the sweet drinks and brain health research, the scientists drew from a large set of observational data taken from thousands of people from the town of Framingham, Massachusetts who were initially recruited beginning back in the 1940s as part of a study designed to learn more about heart disease called the Framingham Heart Study. Over the past few decades and through multiple generations of people, the researchers have kept tabs on the health of these individuals.

So, for that first study on sugary drinks, the scientists zeroed in on the Framingham community`s penchant for soda and juice. They found that on average, the more sweet beverages people drank, the lower their total brain volume and the lower their scores on memory tests. Importantly, brain shrinkage has been tied to an increased risk of Alzheimer`s disease.

For the second study, the researchers looked at the same data again, but this time focused on diet drinks instead. They found a worrisome link here too: People who regularly drank artificially-sweetened sodas (we`re talking about 1-2 diet sodas per day) had a higher risk of stroke and dementia than people who didn`t.

Neither of these findings are good. And the fact that the research is based on large groups of people lends some additional oomph to their conclusions. But the most important takeaway here is that there is simply no definitive research that tells us that sugary drinks cause brain shrinkage or that diet drinks cause dementia. Plus, out of all the people in the study, the percentage of those who did go on to develop stroke or dementia was small — about 3% for stroke and about 5% for dementia.

So the next time you`re at a restaurant and are faced with the question, "Diet or regular?", what should you choose?

Diet or regular?

One thing the two current studies on sweet drinks simply can`t tell us is which one is better for your brain. That said, there is plenty of research linking plain old sugary drinks like soda and juice to weight gain, obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. We don`t yet have any comparable research on diet drinks.

sodaPase, the lead author on both papers, says holding out on both is the safest option. "We recommend that people drink water on a regular basis instead of sugary or artificially sweetened beverages," he says in a press release.

A large review of 50 years of studies published in the American Society for Clinical Nutrition found a link between the amount of sugar-sweetened beverages people consumed and weight gain and obesity.

Specifically, the researchers found "strong evidence for the independent role of the intake of sugar-sweetened beverages, particularly soda, in the promotion of weight gain and obesity in children and adolescents," they write.

Another recent paper written by seven experts in public health, nutrition, and economics makes the links between sugary drinks and America`s obesity problem explicit:

"The science base linking the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages to the risk of chronic diseases is clear," the authors write.

Above all else, everything is best in moderation. If you`re going to drink either plain old sweet tea or soda, limit yourself to an 8-oz glass every few days, and have it as a snack rather than an accompaniment to one. Similarly, if you`re going to drink diet soda, try and have it once a week rather than every day.

SEE ALSO: Juice is the biggest con of your life, whether it`s squeezed by hand or a 400 machine

DON`T MISS: Soda is the new tobacco

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: A mysterious explosion in space has astronomers so baffled they think it might be a completely new kind of cataclysmic event

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Union leaders endorsed stiff divorce terms for Britain on Saturday and warned Britons to have "no illusions" about swiftly securing a new relationship to keep their access to EU markets.
MANILA (Reuters) - Southeast Asian leaders wrapped up a summit on Saturday with no indication of an agreement on how to address Beijing`s assertiveness in the South China Sea, a divisive issue in a region uncertain about its ties with the United States.

elon smaller smiling

Greenlight Capital`s David Einhorn has been getting clobbered on his Tesla short position, just like every other hedge funder who has been somewhat sensibly betting against CEO Elon Musk`s surging stock price and 50-billion market cap.

He says there`s a Tesla bubble, and even Musk would probably admit that he`s right. In a letter to investors dated April 25, Einhorn lumped Tesla in with other go-go growth stocks and wrote, "In due time, we expect these bubbles to pop."

Bubbles always pop, but the Tesla bubble, scary as it is, won`t pop anytime soon.

If Tesla reverts to its historic trading pattern, the stock will decline precipitously at some point in the next 12 months. Having topped its previous highs in the 290 range and busted through 300 — surpassing Ford by market cap to become the number-two US automaker behind GM — Tesla should swoon in the low 200s, giving short-sellers with strong stomachs some satisfaction.

Einhorn should provide his investors with some sort of meaningful timeline here. That`s because as long as US auto sales are running at an elevated level — they`ve been holding at 17-million and above for the past two and half years and show no signs of significantly slackening in 2017 — Tesla will have support for its valuation. 

Electric cars aren`t selling well at all, making up only about 1% of the global market. But Tesla has seen its deliveries steadily increase, nearing 100,000 in 2016, with 500,000 on the agenda if the company can launch its 35,000 Model 3 sedan on schedule later this year. This means that there`s at least a Tesla market, if not a market for EVs overall.

Tesla vs. a sales downturn

Unfortunately, Tesla probably won`t be able to increase demand at its expected clip if the US sales market goes into a cyclical decline in 2018 or 2019. A sales pace of 15 million to 16 million annually would be a serious headwind for Tesla, as it would be for anyone not selling the bread-and-butter vehicles of American life: SUVs and pickup trucks.

However, the current sales pace is likely to hold up for another 12 to 18 months, driven by cheap gas, cheap credit, and an economy at or close to full employment. That alone will bolster the Tesla bubble, at least for awhile. 

If you look at the history of US auto sales, you`ll notice Tesla`s share price took off around 2013 and has been swelling right along with an expanding US auto market.

Tesla Detroit sales vs market cap

Even the loss of a few million in sales might not diminish enthusiasm for Tesla`s stock. The narrative around the company is that it isn`t governed by the same familiar rules as the rest of the auto industry. A standard-issue downturn could diminish Tesla sales, but that would only worsen the losses that investors have come to expect, as they wait for Tesla to become a million-vehicle-a-year powerhouse that vindicates its lofty market cap.

Einhorn`s short bet on Tesla seems to based on the assumption that Tesla is actually a tech stock, and that there`s a general bubble in tech investments. But over the past few years, we`ve seen that Tesla is mostly not a tech company. The company`s biggest challenge has been with developing the car-making competence that`s widely shared by the very auto giants who`s market caps it has trounced. Tesla built fewer cars in all of 2016 than Ford builds of just one model in a month.

Einhorn`s experience

David Einhorn, founder and president of Greenlight Capital, speaks during the Sohn Investment Conference in New York May 4, 2015. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid -

Einhorn should know this because he`s been a longtime investor in GM and is currently agitating to get his own directors on the GM board. He`s also pushing GM to create two new categories of stock: one for dividend-friendly investors; and one focused on growth. It could be that, like many well-capitalized short sellers, he can stay short until he`s right. Eventually, he could be.

But his investors are going to have to hang in there for a while. Tesla is up over 1,200% since its 2010 IPO. There have been some big drops during that period. But overall auto market dynamics don`t appear to support another major plunge before the end of 2017. If the Model 3 launches on time, the stock could go ballistic, busting through 400 a share.

Against that, Einhorn`s wait-for-the-inevitable strategy seems seriously risky. 

SEE ALSO: The Tesla bubble just got terrifying

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: A Tesla bull makes his case: `We think it`s real .... it`s a good car. That`s not a fluke`

Chris Sacca

Billionaire venture capitalist Chris Sacca surprised many in the tech world on Wednesday when he announced that he was retiring from startup investing.

After a stint at the Silicon Valley office of law firm Fenwick & West and then Google, Sacca struck out on his own and founded Lowercase Capital in 2007. He built his reputation and fortune on early investments in companies like Facebook, Uber, and Twitter.

In late 2014, he was introduced to a more general audience in the "Startup" podcast (in the process of being adapted to television by Zach Braff) and then to millions more when he joined the hit show "Shark Tank" as a guest investor the next year.

Sacca, known for his goofy cowboy shirts, wrote on the Lowercase Capital blog this week that he was "hanging up the spurs" and stepping away from startup investing and "Shark Tank" to focus on his young family and other projects. He will continue to advise the companies he`s invested in but his Lowercase Capital partner Matt Mazzeo will handle the portfolio. Sacca also said he`ll be launching his own podcast and hinted at involvement in a political project that doesn`t involve running for office. 

Back in 2015, Sacca told "The 4-Hour Workweek" author and tech investor Tim Ferriss in an episode of Ferriss` podcast that his ability to spot and develop startups that would become billion-dollar companies came from nearly 20 years of experience and the counsel of veteran investors like Josh Kopelman of First Round, Tony Conrad of True Ventures, and Hans Swildens of Industry Ventures.

He noted that luck is involved and that his intuition can be off sometimes — he still regrets declining to fund Airbnb and ignoring an early email inquiry from Snapchat cofounder Bobby Murphy — but his investment philosophy made him one of the Valley`s top names in the last decade. Here are its four elements he cited.

1. Invest only if you can add value to the company.

When Sacca and his Lowercase Capital partner Matt Mazzeo decide to invest their money into a company, they are also committing themselves to be advisers to its founders. Sacca said that if he`s going to make this commitment, he doesn`t need to think that he`ll be able to see a startup through to its IPO but, he explained, "I need to know that I can have a material impact to make something more likely to succeed."

2. Invest in a company that`s already great.

Anyone with a regular job has to work on projects that are assigned to them, whether they want to or not. Sacca said rookie investors are often so used to this mindset that they leave themselves too open to deals.

"When you get into investing, your default stance should be `No,` because most deals suck," he said. "Most deals won`t make money. Most companies will fail. And the temptation always is you see your first deal and you`re like, `OK, I know I can be helpful to these guys, I know I can make this s----y thing better.` And so your first few deals are always your worst."

3. `Give yourself a chance to get rich.`

Sacca learned that it`s important to build a portfolio that allows for chances to make money from the "unicorns" (rare billion-dollar companies) and moderate successes by not spreading yourself thin, entering at a price that`s low enough, and making investments with a longterm perspective.

Sacca said that before he realized this, he once "sold a company to Amazon where I saw 3x on a 50,000 investment in a fund. By the time the fund got paid back ... I had been busting my ass with that company for a couple years, and like I barely had enough money left to buy that [founder] dinner to celebrate the deal."

4. Be proud of the deal.

Sacca said he`s unwilling to compromise on his integrity when he makes a deal, and it`s worked out for him.

"There`s stuff that I`ve passed on that I just don`t regret it at all," he said.

Some examples he mentioned are advertising businesses that place deceptive ads on misspelled domains, subscription services that are intentionally difficult to cancel, products built on unsubstantiated claims, and social networks that utilize anonymous content.

"It seemed like a good way to make money," Sacca said, "but I don`t have to explain to my kids that that`s how I`ve made money."

You can listen to Sacca and Ferriss`s full, in-depth conversation on Ferriss`s site or wherever you get podcasts.

SEE ALSO: The 24-year-old `Italian Mark Zuckerberg` has inspired a movie — and the Italian press is tearing it apart

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Barbara Corcoran reveals what separates successful entrepreneurs from those that fail

Helix DNA 7

I`ve sent my spit off for more genetics tests than anyone else I know.

These tests analyzed my saliva sample to find out a host of different things that my DNA can tell me about my ancestry and health. 

Genetic testing companies have proprietary sets of data and various ways of analyzing information, so each one I tried offered a distinc approach to how they presented my results and what information they gave me. One provided details about my great-grand relatives, while others listed how much Neanderthal DNA I have. 

Every so often, someone asks me which test I recommend. And my answer boils down to one question: What do you want to get out of the test? 

Let`s compare the three direct-to-consumer ones I`ve tried out: AncestryDNA, 23andMe and National Geographic`s Geno 2.0 test. 

23andMe

23andMe kit

23andMe currently offers two versions of its tests: The 199 version comes with health and ancestry components, whereas the 99 version just has the ancestry test.

The health reports can tell you information about your physical traits, (like if you`re likely to have dimples or curly hair), wellness (how well you metabolize caffeine or if you`re a sprinter), and carrier status for certain genetic mutations. In April, the FDA began allowing 23andMe to provide reports on a person`s genetic health risk for certain diseases, including Alzheimer`s and Parkinson`s diseases. In total, the test now has more than 74 reports

To analyze your DNA, 23andMe uses a technique called genotyping. Humans have 3 billion base pairs of DNA in our genome — that`s a lot of information to sift through — so genotyping technology looks for specific parts of DNA and pieces them together.

With 23andMe`s ancestry reports, users have access to information about their ancestry composition (which geographic regions your genes most closely align with), haplogroups (genetic populations that share a common ancestor), and Neanderthal ancestry. They also get access to something called a DNA Relatives tool, which 23andMe users can opt into to connect with other users and find out whether they have relatives in the system.

 

Screen Shot 2015 12 17 at 5.54.33 PM

Verdict: If you`re looking at this test as a science experiment, using it as a way to get involved in research, or viewing it as a chance to learn about your genetic health risks, then this is the test for you. And if you just want to know your ancestry percentages and how much Neanderthal variants you have, the 99 version is a good bet. If you do opt for the full test, however, there are some considerations patient groups and genetic counselors would like users to take into account

If you`re primarily interested in retracing your ancestry, though, read on.

AncestryDNA

AncestryDNA test box

Ancestry`s test, as its name suggests, is all about family histories and genealogy. You won`t find health and wellness reports in its 99 test, but you will find information about where your family comes from and how that lineage connects you to potential ancestors. Like 23andMe, Ancestry uses genotyping technology to analyze your DNA. The service also helps you link up your DNA test to a self-reported family tree. 

There`s a lot to discover within that ancestry data — for example, I was matched up with ancestors dating back to the 18th century, and could explore how I was connected to them. 

Screen Shot 2016 03 30 at 4.41.49 PM

If you simply want to know what percent Scandinavian you are, Ancestry`s site makes it easy to focus on those numbers. Those who want to dig deep into your family tree can do that as well. I would definitely consider purchasing this test for a relative who enjoys researching family history.

Verdict: If the idea of tracing your family tree through the generations and connecting with distant relatives gets you excited — but you`re less interested in receiving health information — this is the test for you. 

National Geographic

Helix DNA 1National Geographic has an ancestry test called Geno 2.0.

The test — which currently costs 149.95 but originally was 199.95 — is different from the others in that it uses next-generation sequencing instead of the genotyping technology that AncestryDNA and 23andMe rely on. 

Unlike genotyping, which just looks for specific parts of DNA and pieces them together, next-generation sequencing looks at only the protein-encoding parts of your genome — called the exome. The next-generation sequencing analyzes roughly 2% of those 3 billion base pairs. The additional information this technique picks up could lead to new, more specific genetic testing features in the future, especially as our knowledge of the genome and exome continues to grow.

Helix DNA 5

Based on next-generation sequencing, National Geographic`s test provides three ancestry reports.

  • Regional, which tells you where your ancestors came from more than 500 years ago. This didn`t get into as many specifics in my case as AncestryDNA and 23andMe`s tests did. 
  • Deep, which shows your ancestors` migration patterns thousands of years ago.
  • Hominin ancestry, which tells you how much DNA you have in common with a Neanderthal.

The verdict: For what you get, the test doesn`t have nearly the range that other ancestry tests have. And it`s more expensive than the other two 99 options, though National Geographic says the revenue funds nonprofit "conservation, exploration, research, and education" efforts.

Other ancestry tests:

There are, of course, other tests I have yet to try.

MyHeritage, for example, has a DNA test that`s currently going for 79 (originally 99). Its tests, like Ancestry`s, are focused on building family connections and trees. 

Others, like FamilyTree DNA (which offers tests from 59) are also geared toward those wanting to find genetic links to relatives.

Conclusion: Each company has its own methods, algorithms, and data, and the reports can differ a bit. Because the three main direct-to-consumer genetics tests come in at around the same price point, you should go with the one that will answer your most pressing questions.

SEE ALSO: I shipped my spit to AncestryDNA to see how much I could learn from my genes — and found out my family history is more complex than I thought

DON`T MISS: I revisited my 23andMe DNA test results that can now tell if you`re at an increased risk of diseases — here`s what it was like

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Amateur astronomers just found objects in space that could lead to the biggest discovery of our Solar System in over 150 years

billy mcfarland ja rule fyre

The Fyre Festival was supposed to be an escape to an island paradise, where you and your friends could party with super models and indulge in luxury.

What those who spent 450-12,000 for a ticket actually got, however, was a day spent trapped on an island, allegedly with no plumbing, a processed cheese sandwich, few musicians, and airport officials who reportedly padlocked dehydrated attendees waiting for a plane to escape.

The festival was the brainchild of young entrepreneur Billy McFarland and early 2000s rap star Ja Rule.

After hours of social media postings from attendees who learned shortly upon arrival on the Bahamian island that the festival was canceled and that there were no flights home or hotels to stay at, Ja Rule posted on Twitter, denying the allegation the festival was a scam while also apologizing.

McFarland broke his silence late on Friday with an apology on Rolling Stone, and spoke again on Saturday morning through a video he sent to TMZ.

"We were overwhelmed and just didn`t have the foresight to solve all these problems," McFarland told Rolling Stone, adding that he and his team were "a little naive." He said that he would atone for the failure by refunding all attendees this weekend and offering them access to a free festival in the US later this year. He said that the Fyre Festival as it was intended will re-launch in 2018, and that 1.50 of every ticket would go to the Red Cross in the Bahamas (later saying in the TMZ video each donation would be 1.00).

"Next year, we will definitely start earlier," he said.

On Saturday morning, McFarland told TMZ that promoters and artists had already reached out to him, and that he was working with them on next year`s festival, to be held at a beach location in the US.

McFarland created Fyre with Ja Rule in 2015, and told the story of how they came together last November at the MusicNotes Conference.

McFarland was interested in putting on a music event of some sort and decided to find the representative of Ja Rule, one of his favorite artists. His first stop was Instagram, where he found a guy going by "Reggie Muscles" who claimed to be the rapper`s representative. Reggie Muscles requested 500 for a meeting with Ja Rule.

Instead of the rapper, Muscles passed McFarland to "Big Fred," who made the same request. This repeated several times, McFarland said, until he finally found himself on a helicopter with Ja Rule after spending thousands to finally get to him. It was here, he said, that he learned Ja Rule had no idea McFarland had been trying to book him.

And thus Fyre was born, they said, as a way to cut out the middle men and create a festival that dealt with artists directly.

This year`s event was supposed to be headlined by Blink-182, who canceled shortly before the event, citing a lack of resources provided by Fyre.

In his Rolling Stone account, McFarland said he and Ja Rule picked the Exumas section of the Bahamas because of its beauty. He said that he later learned that there was no working water or sewage on the island. He told TMZ that he had to ship an ambulance to the island from New Jersey for the event.

McFarland claimed that he didn`t cancel the event sooner because things didn`t turn so bad until a storm late Wednesday night destroyed much of the event`s infrastructure.

This isn`t the first time McFarland has faced complaints for failing to deliver. Earlier this year, Business Insider reported that many members of McFarland`s Magnises club for millennials said that Magnises regularly canceled events with little notice, and that their Magnises credit cards were frauduently charged.

As for Fyre, McFarland said he`s moving forward and will be more prepared next time, assuming that actually happens.

"We underestimated the size of the team we`d need," he told TMZ. "We had 300 full-time festival staff this year ... we would seek to multiply that by a large factor for next year."

SEE ALSO: Here`s what Fyre Festival attendees thought they were getting when they bought 12,000 tickets — and here`s the nightmarish reality

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Fyre Festival expectations vs. reality — here`s what attendees thought they were getting when they bought 12,000 tickets

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban told leaders of his center-right EU political group on Saturday that he would comply with demands from Brussels to change measures branded an attack on academic freedom, the party said.

ESPN sc6

On Wednesday, ESPN announced a brutal round of layoffs, which is expected to hit about 100 employees, including dozens of on-air personalities.

These layoffs are high-profile and painful for ESPN, and on a surface level, seem to validate ESPN naysayers that think the sports giant is in the midst of a slow death march.

But while these layoffs do show that ESPN is dealing with the sting of digital disruption, they don’t mean the business is doomed, according to a recent report by analysts at Morgan Stanley, led by Benjamin Swinburne.

To understand how the layoffs fit into ESPN’s broader strategy, it’s helpful to delve into the two main issues that provoked them. The first is that ESPN has lost millions of subscribers in the last few years, which is putting pressure on the bottom line. The second is that SportsCenter needs to continue to modernize, quickly.

Let’s look at SportsCenter first.

“Driving force behind today`s [layoffs] decision is different approach to @SportsCenter with increased emphasis on digital presence,” journalist James Miller tweeted Wednesday.

ESPN President John Skipper backed that up view in a memo Wednesday. “Our content strategy — primarily illustrated in recent months by melding distinct, personality-driven SportsCenter TV editions and digital-only efforts with our biggest sub-brand — still needs to go further, faster … and as always, must be efficient and nimble,” Skipper wrote.

Before the rise of the internet, SportsCenter was the undisputed king of sports programming. It set the narratives, and was a must-watch for all the highlight clips you didn’t want to miss.

“It was almost like MTV in the 80s and 90s. It was just one of those special cultural type of media outlets that was almost impossible to replicate,” Bleacher Report CEO Dave Finocchio told Business Insider last year.

But with the internet, highlight clips were online and blogs were churning out takes, sometimes before the game was even finished. SportsCenter had to change or lose relevancy.

And it has changed, especially recently. As Skipper referenced in his memo, ESPN has made an aggressive moves to turn the various SportsCenter offerings into shows with more personality. In sum: There`s less focus on “highlights,” more on “talk show” elements, and a focus on the digital side.

The transition Skipper described in his memo is something SportsCenter can, and will, continue to make, but there will be some hurt along the way, and it may never be the juggernaut it once was.

Millions and millions of losses

SportsCenter hasn’t been the only pain point for ESPN. The other big one has been the major subscriber losses that have persisted for years. According to the latest estimates, ESPN has lost 12 million subscribers in the last six years, a drop of about 12%.

If this trend continues, it will be horrible for ESPN. ESPN makes money from advertising, but also directly gets paid 7.21 each month, per subscriber, for ESPN alone, and 9.06 for the ESPN family of networks. Losing 12 million subscribers hurts — a lot.

But there are reasons to be optimistic looking forward, according to analysts at Morgan Stanley. Why? The primary reason is that Morgan Stanley expects a lot of growth in new online TV bundles, targeted especially at younger viewers (known in the industry as "vMVPDs"). The pitch of many of these services is a lower-cost TV bundle — usually 40 or less for an entry-level package — for a smaller selection of channels you can watch on whatever device you want. A few of these services are already out, like DirecTV Now, Sling TV, Sony`s Vue, and YouTube TV, and there`s a Hulu offering on the horizon.

Morgan Stanley thinks these new services will draw people into the pay-TV ecosystem who either left (cord-cutters) or never had a package (cord-nevers).

“New entrants offering live streaming TV products (vMVPDs) could expand the overall market and stabilize total linear TV subscribers,” Morgan Stanley wrote in a recent report. Put another way: They could stop the slide of subscribers from traditional TV.

This isn`t automatically great news for ESPN. In fact, it could be horrible if ESPN got dropped from some of the low-price bundles because of its high cost. But that hasn’t been the case so far, partially because of the power Disney has at the negotiating table.

“With ESPN included in multiple aggressively-priced video services already in the market or expected to launch soon, the pace and incremental nature of new vMVPD adoption could help improve volume headwinds over the next few years,” Morgan Stanley wrote. These new packages could give ESPN some breathing room on subscribers.

Here`s a good illustration of how Morgan Stanley believes “Gold” (including Disney, Fox, CBS, NBC, and Time Warner) and “Silver (including Discovery, Viacom) network groups will fare over the next few years, in terms of subscribers:

Screen Shot 2017 04 27 at 11.02.26 AM

That graph shows subscriber trends turning back toward positive.

That doesn’t mean ESPN will get back all those subscribers it lost, but it does mean Morgan Stanley expects “subscriber erosion trends to improve.” And it’s not just good news for ESPN, but for any cable network struggling with subscriber losses.

In all, Morgan Stanley thinks that online bundles will get 3 million subscribers by the end of 2017. Here’s how the analysts think it will break down:

Screen Shot 2017 04 27 at 11.01.50 AM

If consumers are drawn in by these new bundles, and ESPN continues to have a prominent seat at the table, it could mean a slowing of the massive subscriber losses that have plagued ESPN in recent years. That doesn`t mean there won`t be more layoffs, especially as the business models for making money in places like Snapchat, or on ESPN`s own app, mature, but it will give Disney investors a bit more confidence that ESPN is not in an inevitable decline.

Additional reporting by Cork Gaines.

SEE ALSO: Bleacher Report`s CEO explained why ESPN is in trouble

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: We Got An Inside Look At ESPN`s New SportsCenter Studio — And It`s Awesome

In 2010, a new video game classic was born.

"Red Dead Redemption" is widely regarded as one of the finest games made in the past 10 years. It takes the open-world environment of "Grand Theft Auto" and twists it into something unique: a third-person, open-world action game set in the Old West — it`s even made by the same folks behind "GTA"! We`re talking America as it transitioned from a lawless frontier to modern civilization. This is not stuff that video games tackle.

And that`s part of why people are so incredibly excited for "Red Dead Redemption 2," which is expected to launch later this year. Just look at this:

Red Dead Redemption 2

Right? Let`s dive in.

SEE ALSO: The best racing game ever made is getting a truly insane addition

If these graphics look too good to be true, think again: These incredible visuals were reportedly captured on a PlayStation 4.



Like the first "Red Dead Redemption," the sequel takes place in the American Old West.



More specifically, the game is set in "America`s unforgiving heartland."



See the rest of the story at Business Insider
BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Union leaders approved on Saturday guidelines for their chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, setting priorities that the Union of 27 governments staying in the bloc wants to achieve in talks on Britain`s withdrawal.
ROME (Reuters) - The Knights of Malta, a Catholic chivalric order and global charity, elected a new, interim leader on Saturday to oversee a period of reform and restore calm to the organization after its recent row with the Vatican.
MOSCOW (Reuters) - A U.S. deployment of ballistic missile defense systems in Romania and plans to place more defense systems in Poland violate an existing arms treaty, Russia`s foreign ministry said in a statement on Saturday.

woman sleeping

White-noise machines are not a modern concept. But a white-noise machine that creates a sound blanket customized to your room`s acoustics? That`s new. 

And that`s what the Nightingale does: It`s a smart sleep system that masks all sorts of sounds, like car horns outside or snoring in the next room.

The Nightingale works by plugging into the outlets in a room and emitting noise based on the acoustic makeup of the space. If your bedroom is mainly glass and concrete, for example, Nightingale will emit sounds that won`t echo off those reflective surfaces. 

I`ve now been sleeping with the Nightingale turned on for more the last week. Here`s what it`s like. 

SEE ALSO: This adorable device might be the world’s smallest 4G smartphone — check it out

It`s easy to install — and there`s no need to give up an outlet.

Nightingale consists of two rectangular boxes that plug into the wall outlets in your bedroom. The nice thing about the devices is that they have pass-through plugs, so you don`t have to sacrifice outlet space in your room. 

Since the devices only need an outlet to work, Nightingale says you can travel with them, put them in hospital rooms, or move them around in your house. They also don`t need to be unobstructed or out the open, so it`s OK if you want to hide the devices behind furniture. 



The Nightingale also serves as a nightlight, if you need it.

Both devices have lights that glow either green, red, yellow, blue, or white to light your way to bed. I opted not to use the lights because they`re very bright, but they can be helpful if your room gets very dark at night. 



Finding your "custom sound blanket" is pretty simple.

To use Nightingale, you`ll need to download the iOS app (it`s coming to Android soon). Once you plug in the two devices, you`ll have to give Nightingale some information about the room it`s in. Is it a hospital? A nursery? A master bedroom? 

From there, you`ll need to tell the app a bit about the materials in the room. If your room is carpeted, your bedding is plush, and you have thick curtains, the sound will be a lot different than if your room has high ceilings and concrete floors. 

My bedroom is pretty standard: it has hardwood floors and big windows, but it`s not particularly big and all my bedroom furniture is wood. I also don`t have tinnitus (ringing in the ears) or a roommate that snores, so Nightingale chose the basic "General Bedroom Blanket" setting for my room. But there are 15 total sound blanket preferences within the app based on the type of room and your sleeping conditions. 



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

nintendo 3ds

Nintendo`s blockbuster Switch is a new kind of video-game console that can be plugged into a TV for big-screen gaming, or pocketed for portable action.

But the Switch isn`t Nintendo`s only portable console.

The Nintendo 3DS has been on the market since 2011, meaning it has a deeper bench of top-tier games. Plus, as a portable-only gadget, it gets way better battery life than the Switch. 

And late Thursday night, Nintendo made the surprise announcement of the New Nintendo 2DS XL, a new 149 console in the 3DS console lineup, on sale in July. It`s like the regular Nintendo 3DS consoles, minus the 3D aspect.

Picking between the Nintendo 3DS and 2DS can seem a little tricky. Luckily, we`re here to help.

SEE ALSO: Nintendo`s Wii U was a flop, but here`s why you should consider buying one on Black Friday

The original Nintendo 3DS first launched in 2011. The bottom screen is for touch, complete with a little stylus.



The 3DS is Nintendo`s follow-up to the massively successful Nintendo DS, pictured here. The Nintendo DS was the best-selling game console of all time with 154 million units sold.



The 3DS doesn`t try to reinvent the wheel. It adds a joystick for better control in games, sports overall better graphics, and can display games in 3D, without the need for any kind of glasses. Hence the name.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

The next few months are challenging for most of us. High school and university students have mid-term and final exams, papers to submit, and thesis studies to document. At work, many of us have year-long projects to complete.

Success in all of these depends upon quick thinking, and a recent study shows there`s a tasty drink that could help clarify our thinking.

SEE ALSO: Here are all the health benefits you get from drinking pomegranate juice

DON`T MISS: The `ABCDE` method is the best way to conquer the common cold — here`s how it works

The cocktail that improves your thinking

A collaborative research team from New York`s Clarkson University, the University of Wisconsin, and the Oregon Science University studied a group of 24 students at the University of Georgia. Each test subject took a mental energy test battery before and 3 times after consuming a series of three test drinks. One contained only caffeine, one contained only cocoa, and the third contained both cocoa and caffeine.

All drinks were provided in unlabeled packets by The Hershey Company, a commercial partner in the study. The study was randomized and double-blinded as neither the test subjects nor the investigators knew which drink produced which results during the testing sessions.



After the codes were broken and results tabulated, the researchers found that the cocoa-caffeine cocktail significantly boosted cognitive performance and attention to task. 

Comparing test results from drinking the cocktail to drinking caffeine alone revealed that the the cocoa with its flavanols reduced the subjects` anxiety levels during the test sessions permitting better performance. 

The results did not reveal improvement in the subjects` motivation and energy levels. Other studies, though, have shown that the flavanols in cocoa and dark chocolate do have a positive effect on mood and problem-solving.



The study cocktail contained 70 mg of caffeine and 455 mg of flavanols. The researchers specifically avoided sugar and dairy additives. Sugar would add another variable to the test drinks, and dairy ingredients have been shown to reduce the bioavailability and effectiveness of the flavanols.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Apple deregister iMessage

If you`ve recently switched from an iPhone to an Android, you might stop receiving text messages.

That`s because Apple iPhones have a system where they automatically turn texts from one iPhone to another iPhone into iMessages. So when people with iPhones send you texts to your new Android phone, Apple is routing them to an iPhone that doesn`t exist anymore. 

There`s one easy way to fix it: A hidden page on Apple`s website lets you deregister your phone number from iMessage.

The fix has been available since 2014 but people still have trouble with this, especially when switching to new premium Android phones like the Samsung Galaxy S8 or Google Pixel. 

>> Deregister your phone number from iMessage here. 

SEE ALSO: Check out the insane motorized windows on the Apple Store in Dubai

Join the conversation about this story »

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Several hundred Russians lined up in central Moscow on Saturday under the gaze of riot police to hand over handwritten appeals for President Vladimir Putin to quit, as similar protests took place in other cities.

Guests attend the Kairos Society Global Summit Welcome Dinner At The Rockefeller Family Estate on April 20, 2017 in Tarrytown, New York.

There`s a particular kind of people that get onto helicopters in New York City and fly to the Rockefeller estate about an hour`s drive away. There, they attend a 200-person dinner with former heads of state, Admirals, CEOs, media elite and billionaire investors — shmoozing, chatting about business ideas, having a few glasses of wine. The next morning, they wake up and talk about the newest innovations in jet engine technology with some kids from MIT.

I will use a word to describe them — a word that has been thrown around with a negative connotation it simply does not deserve. These people are globalists.

And last weekend a number of these people — most of them young Silicon Valley types with an entrepreneurial bent — gathered for a meeting of the Kairos Society in New York City and talked about what these people always talk about when they`re together: fixing things and making money. 

But these days, a global and entrepreneurial mindset means so much more than that.

We live in a world where the prevailing ideology in the White House is that the richest country in the world is a nation of losers who should be afraid of their own shadows. In the face of challenges, leaders around the world are increasingly telling their people that they can and should retreat. 

The young entrepreneurs of the Kairos Society reject all that. And beyond the buzz words like "innovation" and "disruption," beyond the energetic speeches about changing the world, and the private discussions about venture capital allocation, there was a far more powerful underlying message at this meeting.

The globalists are coming, and whether you like it or not, they`re here to help.

The kids are alright

The Kairos Society is a fellowship program for the best and brightest young entrepreneurs in the world. Founded in 2008, the group`s co-founders Ryan Bloomer, Alex Fiance, and Ankur Jain have since expanded the program to over 50 countries, and have also opened a venture fund. You must apply to be a part of Kairos, and referrals are ideal.

The idea, as Bloomer and his colleagues said over and over again during the three-day affair, is to tackle "the big problems the next generation should be focusing on." 

Of course, after you`ve pinpointed the problems you need to find the capital to set about solving them.

CEO and Founder at Me Salva! Miguel Andorffy attends the Kairos Society Global Summit Welcome Dinner At The Rockefeller Family Estate on April 20, 2017 in Tarrytown, New York.Once you`re in Kairos, you get access to the Kairos Rolodex, which — aside from a bunch of fresh faced, young brains from the Ivy League, Stanford and MIT — also includes a host of global leaders and investors you might run into at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. 

They attend meetings like this one in New York City to explain the nuances of these problems the young entrepeneurs are turning their attention to. Those problems run the gamut from fake news in media to climate change. Former Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou, for instance, showed up to discuss lowering the cost of healthcare. 

Later, Papandreou, like everyone else in attendance, clapped at dinner when young Kairos fellow and Brazilian CEO Miguel Andorffy told the story of his education company, Me Salva.

Me Salva puts video classes on the internet, and as of now 400,000 classes are being watched a day. Four classes are being watched per second. Andorffy is looking for more capital to expand his business all over the world. Thus, the applause.

And thus, the appeal of Kairos. Entrepreneurship is in large part about seizing one`s circumstances, but if the market isn`t ready to receive your idea (i.e. you can`t find enough capital), it doesn`t matter how good it is. The point of organizations like Kairos is to move the invisible hand of the market just an inch in another direction.

And, in that sense, what people like nationalist White House advisor Steve Bannon say about globalists is true. There are only a few tens of thousands of people on the planet who get to move the hand, even just a little bit. Everyone else just has to deal with the consequences.

Dr. Oz and Andrew Ross Sorkin

Globalist Gary

What would also likely upset Bannon and his ilk about Kairos is that the finest minds in the country are generally set about fixing the entire world`s problems, rather than worrying about the concerns of their home nation. Thinking beyond borders is not just encouraged, it`s basically a given.

On the second day of the conference, at the top of 1 World Trade Center, Kyle Nel, founder & executive director of Lowe’s Innovation Labs, challenged the Kairos kids to do something seemingly simple — make paint healthier and cheaper.

"Suggesting that something healthy is going to cost more is an old way of thinking," Nel said. "It`s only helping people where they live globally if everyone can afford it... What we [at Lowes] don`t have is the materials science. What we don`t have is the new thinking."

Nel`s "new thinking," in addition to maintaining a global rather than national focus, represents moving away from traditional national and global institutions because, after all, the problems Kairos fellows are trying to solve have been left unfixed by "broken, old industries and government" (Jain`s words).

In that way, and in that way alone, the Kairos kids and the nationalists that have taken hold of global politics are in agreement. Ankur Jain and Marine Le Pen could shake hands and agree that government has failed the people. Even Steve Bannon, who reportedly insults his White House colleague Gary Cohn by calling him "globalist Gary," would likely nod his head if he heard Periscope founder Kayvon Beykpor say the most important thing for entrepeneurs is that they "build stuff."

But that`s where the similarities end.

Gerard Baker, Editor-in-Chief of The Wall Street Journal; Former Prime Minister of Greece George Papandreou; Naveen Jain founder of Viome; and Werner Vogels CTO and President of Amazon

If you want to fly far out into the future of a Kairos mind then you need look no further than Jain`s father, Naveen Jain. An entrepreneur himself, he spoke on a panel with Papandreou and Werner Vogels, CTO & President of Amazon.

The elder Jain described a world of entrepeneurs solving problems through private enterprise so successfully that the nation-state becomes irrelevant. Something like that would give the Le Pens, Bannons, and Trumps of the world a migraine. Take away the nation and people like them are also irrelevant; take away the nation and everything they know is gone.

Places

BenBen check KairosIt was fitting that on Saturday, the last day of the conference, Kairos members presented their "Kairos 50" companies (the 50 most promising start-ups in the Society) on the floor of the venerable but almost-useless floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Now that trading has gone from an open-outcry system to the digital world, the place is a glorified TV set.

It is a reminder that even the most powerful institutions must bend a knee to the force of technological change. It is a reminder that, no matter what Steve Bannon or Trump or anyone says, there is no going backward in time.

Which means the world will continue getting smaller and closer and more interconnected, regardless of hiccups along the way. Kairos` entrepeneurs plan with that in mind.

Nationalists would not like that the winner of the 100,000 "Kairos 50" prize (from venture capital firm Draper Associates) was a company called Benben, which seeks to streamline land and property administration in Africa using blockchain technology.

They would not like that the 50,000 prize went to Neolight, a company that seeks to revolutionize neonatal care. That company is especially focused on finding ways to prevent infants from dying of hypothermia or suffering from jaundice. These are problems one is more likely to encounter in the developing world than in say, Des Moines, Iowa.

In other words, the Kairos kids don`t put America first. No one involved with the Society would ever ask them to.

No one there thinks that small. 

SEE ALSO: One company symbolizes everything sickening about the opioid crisis

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NOW WATCH: People are outraged by a Pepsi ad starring Kendall Jenner — here`s how the company responded

ESPN sc6

On Wednesday, ESPN announced a brutal round of layoffs, which is expected to hit about 100 employees, including dozens of on-air personalities.

These layoffs are high-profile and painful for ESPN, and on a surface level, seem to validate ESPN naysayers that think the sports giant is in the midst of a slow death march.

But while these layoffs do show that ESPN is dealing with the sting of digital disruption, they don’t mean the business is doomed, according to a recent report by analysts at Morgan Stanley, led by Benjamin Swinburne.

To understand how the layoffs fit into ESPN’s broader strategy, it’s helpful to delve into the two main issues that provoked them. The first is that ESPN has lost millions of subscribers in the last few years, which is putting pressure on the bottom line. The second is that SportsCenter needs to continue to modernize, quickly.

Let’s look at SportsCenter first.

“Driving force behind today`s [layoffs] decision is different approach to @SportsCenter with increased emphasis on digital presence,” journalist James Miller tweeted Wednesday.

ESPN President John Skipper backed that up view in a memo Wednesday. “Our content strategy — primarily illustrated in recent months by melding distinct, personality-driven SportsCenter TV editions and digital-only efforts with our biggest sub-brand — still needs to go further, faster … and as always, must be efficient and nimble,” Skipper wrote.

Before the rise of the internet, SportsCenter was the undisputed king of sports programming. It set the narratives, and was a must-watch for all the highlight clips you didn’t want to miss.

“It was almost like MTV in the 80s and 90s. It was just one of those special cultural type of media outlets that was almost impossible to replicate,” Bleacher Report CEO Dave Finocchio told Business Insider last year.

But with the internet, highlight clips were online and blogs were churning out takes, sometimes before the game was even finished. SportsCenter had to change or lose relevancy.

And it has changed, especially recently. As Skipper referenced in his memo, ESPN has made an aggressive moves to turn the various SportsCenter offerings into shows with more personality. In sum: There`s less focus on “highlights,” more on “talk show” elements, and a focus on the digital side.

The transition Skipper described in his memo is something SportsCenter can, and will, continue to make, but there will be some hurt along the way, and it may never be the juggernaut it once was.

Millions and millions of losses

SportsCenter hasn’t been the only pain point for ESPN. The other big one has been the major subscriber losses that have persisted for years. According to the latest estimates, ESPN has lost 12 million subscribers in the last six years, a drop of about 12%.

If this trend continues, it will be horrible for ESPN. ESPN makes money from advertising, but also directly gets paid 7.21 each month, per subscriber, for ESPN alone, and 9.06 for the ESPN family of networks. Losing 12 million subscribers hurts — a lot.

But there are reasons to be optimistic looking forward, according to analysts at Morgan Stanley. Why? The primary reason is that Morgan Stanley expects a lot of growth in new online TV bundles, targeted especially at younger viewers (known in the industry as "vMVPDs"). The pitch of many of these services is a lower-cost TV bundle — usually 40 or less for an entry-level package — for a smaller selection of channels you can watch on whatever device you want. A few of these services are already out, like DirecTV Now, Sling TV, Sony`s Vue, and YouTube TV, and there`s a Hulu offering on the horizon.

Morgan Stanley thinks these new services will draw people into the pay-TV ecosystem who either left (cord-cutters) or never had a package (cord-nevers).

“New entrants offering live streaming TV products (vMVPDs) could expand the overall market and stabilize total linear TV subscribers,” Morgan Stanley wrote in a recent report. Put another way: They could stop the slide of subscribers from traditional TV.

This isn`t automatically great news for ESPN. In fact, it could be horrible if ESPN got dropped from some of the low-price bundles because of its high cost. But that hasn’t been the case so far, partially because of the power Disney has at the negotiating table.

“With ESPN included in multiple aggressively-priced video services already in the market or expected to launch soon, the pace and incremental nature of new vMVPD adoption could help improve volume headwinds over the next few years,” Morgan Stanley wrote. These new packages could give ESPN some breathing room on subscribers.

Here`s a good illustration of how Morgan Stanley believes “Gold” (including Disney, Fox, CBS, NBC, and Time Warner) and “Silver (including Discovery, Viacom) network groups will fare over the next few years, in terms of subscribers:

Screen Shot 2017 04 27 at 11.02.26 AM

That graph shows subscriber trends turning back toward positive.

That doesn’t mean ESPN will get back all those subscribers it lost, but it does mean Morgan Stanley expects “subscriber erosion trends to improve.” And it’s not just good news for ESPN, but for any cable network struggling with subscriber losses.

In all, Morgan Stanley thinks that online bundles will get 3 million subscribers by the end of 2017. Here’s how the analysts think it will break down:

Screen Shot 2017 04 27 at 11.01.50 AM

If consumers are drawn in by these new bundles, and ESPN continues to have a prominent seat at the table, it could mean a slowing of the massive subscriber losses that have plagued ESPN in recent years. That doesn`t mean there won`t be more layoffs, especially as the business models for making money in places like Snapchat, or on ESPN`s own app, mature, but it will give Disney investors a bit more confidence that ESPN is not in an inevitable decline.

Additional reporting by Cork Gaines.

SEE ALSO: Bleacher Report`s CEO explained why ESPN is in trouble

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: We Got An Inside Look At ESPN`s New SportsCenter Studio — And It`s Awesome

BERLIN (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Saturday that she and President Donald Trump have built a "good working relationship" even though the two had frosty exchanges last year that raised fears of damage to the pivotal U.S.-German partnership.

Humans are still evolving, So, where will evolution take us in 1,000 years?
Chances are we’ll be taller. Humans have already seen a boom in height over the last 130 years.

In 1880 the average American male was 5’7’’. Today, he’s 5’10’’.

We may also merge with machines that can enhance our hearing, eyesight, health, and much more. Right now, there are hearing aids that let you record sounds, generate white noise, and even come with a built-in phone.

Another example is a team out of the University of Oregon which is developing bionic eyes that help the blind to see. But it’s not impossible to imagine that this technology could become a tool for seeing what we currently consider invisible, like different energies of light such as infrared and x-rays.

There will eventually be a day where prosthetics are no longer just for the disabled.

However, it’s not just our outside appearance that will change – our genes will also evolve on microscopic levels to aid our survival. For example, an Oxford-led study discovered a group of HIV-infected children in South Africa living healthy lives. It turns out, they have a built-in defense against HIV that prevents the virus from advancing to AIDS.

And with gene-editing tools like CRISPR, we may eventually control our genes and DNA to the point where we make ourselves immune to disease and even reverse the effects of aging.

Another way to jump-start the human evolution on a different path is to move some of us to Mars. Mars receives 66% less sunlight than Earth. Which could mean humans on Mars will evolve larger pupils that can absorb more light in order to see. And since Mars’ gravitational pull is only 38% of Earth’s, people born on Mars might actually be taller than anyone on Earth. In space, the fluid that separates our vertebrae expands, which led American aerospace engineer, Robert Zubrin to suggest that Mars’ low gravity could allow the human spine to elongate enough to add a few extra inches to our height.

However, not even a move to Mars could spark the biggest change in human evolution that we may have coming in the next 1,000 years: immortality. The path to immortality will likely require humans to download their consciousness into a machine. Right now, scientists in Italy and China are performing head transplants on animals to determine if you can transfer consciousness from one body to another. They claim their next big step is to transplant human heads.

Whatever happens in the next 1,000 years — whether we merge with machines or become them — one thing is certain: The human race is always changing — and the faster we change and branch out from Earth, the better chance we have of outrunning extinction.

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how to survive a plague

Documentaries are powerful learning tools, and our society remains very ignorant about sex, so it stands to reason that there’s a lot that we can learn from some good docs dealving into sexuality.

While putting together my new book “The Sex Effect” — which examines hidden relationships between sex and culture — I came across a slew of compelling documentaries about sex and society.

The Sex Effect: Baring Our Complicated Relationship with Sex

A gripping exploration of the relationship between sex and our society, with a foreword by bestselling author A.J. JacobsWhy do political leaders become entangled in so many sex scandals? How did the U.S. military inadvertently help make San Francisco a mecca of gay culture? And what was the orig...

Here are five great documentaries you need to watch to be smarter about sex:

SEE ALSO: Every HBO show ranked from worst to best, according to critics

1. "How to Survive a Plague"

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As AIDS was killing thousands of gay men throughout the 1980s, the US government largely ignored the issue. This documentary shows how activists groups such as ACT UP took matters into their own hands by staging protests that ultimately pressured the government to develop better treatment drugs and roll them out to patients quicker.

While the grim matter of people dying from a debilitating disease can be an upsetting subject, “How to Survive a Plague” is actually a pretty inspiring documentary because through its incredibly rich archival footage, it illustrates the power of protest and what can be accomplished when everyday people band together and organize to fight unjust power structures.

Streaming on: Netflix Hulu, YouTube, Amazon Video, Google Play, YouTube



2. "Coming Out Under Fire"

It wasn’t until 2011 that the US military officially stopped dismissing soldiers because of their sexual orientation. A hidden consequence of these homophobic policies is that they inadvertently strengthened gay identity in the US by boosting the populations of "gayborhoods" in port cities and making many gay people aware of their orientation.

This documentary tells that story through the voices of LGBT service members who had to work around policies aimed at excluding them. The most salient point of the documentary is how the military continually altered its reasons for banning gay troops whenever its theories became untenable.

Initially, sodomy was criminalized. Then, with the rise of psychiatry, homosexuality was branded as a mental illness, and we couldn’t have mentally ill people fighting our wars. After psychiatrists removed homosexuality as an illness, the new claim was that gay service members posed security risks. After that was disproved, gay troops were accused of undermining unit cohesion, which is another theory that has been debunked.

What “Coming Out Under Fire” teaches us is to be skeptical of the underlying imperatives behind morally branded injunctions.

Streaming on: Vimeo



3. "Paris Is Burning"

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One reason documentaries can be so intriguing is that, when done well, they can give viewers a glimpse into subcultures that many people are totally oblivious to. “Paris Is Burning” provides a fascinating look into drag culture in New York City in the late 1980s, where people were voguing before Madonna commodified the act in her hit single and music video.

The documentary shows how marginalized groups can develop their own cultures within a broader society that they perceive to be oppressive.

Streaming on: Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Video



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

In the last major "Star Wars" game, "Battlefront," you`re given a sandbox of "Star Wars" characters and worlds to play in.

It`s very pretty — one of the best-looking games on any system — but doesn`t hold a candle to what one intrepid gamer turned it into. 

Behold:

Star Wars Battlefront mod

No, that isn`t a still from "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" — that`s what happens when you apply a "mod" (modification) to "Star Wars Battlefront" on PC. And no, you can`t do this to the Xbox One or PlayStation 4 versions, sadly; modding games requires a level of access to the guts of a game that you simply can`t access on consoles.

All that aside: Whoa, right?

SEE ALSO: A brand new `Star Wars` game was just announced — here`s everything we know

All of these images was captured by the mod`s creator, Martin Bergman.



Bergman says that running the mod can be pretty intensive on your computer`s processor.



It apparently drops the framerate pretty dramatically (in the 30-40 frames per second range).



See the rest of the story at Business Insider
PESHAWAR (Reuters) - Islamic State killed a senior Afghan Taliban official in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar, the Afghan militants said on Saturday, in a rare clash between the rival Islamist groups inside Pakistan.
MOSCOW (Reuters) - Hundreds of riot police deployed in central Moscow on Saturday ahead of an opposition protest calling for President Vladimir Putin not to run for what would be his fourth presidential term next year.
HONG KONG (Reuters) - The legal chief of Beijing`s representative office in Hong Kong said on Saturday growing calls for independence could make the territory`s current "one country, two systems" constitutional framework unsustainable.
NAIROBI (Reuters) - Kenyan police have yet to take witness statements or gather ballistic evidence from the site of an ambush where gunmen wounded a world-famous conservationist, sources say, and are unable to give details about suspects they said they arrested.
BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Union leaders endorsed a stiff set of divorce terms for Britain at a summit on Saturday, rejoicing in a rare show of unity in adversity but well aware that may start to fray once negotiations begin.

Project Wing drone

Project Wing, the delivery drone initiative under development at Google-parent Alphabet, felt another jolt of turbulence this week as more members of the team were officially cut loose.

But even as sources inside the high-profile group report ongoing challenges, the drone unit is preparing an important update to demonstrate progress that`s expected in a matter of weeks.

Business Insider has heard from multiple people that a group of employees left the team this week. And despite getting a big shout-out from Alphabet CEO Larry Page in a recent public letter, Project Wing is still not close to being ready to launch, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Our sources are calling the latest job reductions at Wing a layoff, however an X spokesperson explains that these cuts are not new but rather the final part of the reorganization that began in January, shortly after the departure of the unit`s leader Dave Vos in the fall.

Employees were informed back then that their jobs were going away and they had until mid-April to land another one elsewhere including within Google. Some of the affected employees managed to get hired into new groups, while others are no longer employed by Alphabet.

"X (and Alphabet generally) typically gives people time and support to find new roles when there are changes in teams/projects," a spokesperson told Business Insider.

Ambitious initiatives like Project Wing, which is trying to invent a drone that can deliver packages, is by definition a risky undertaking with no guarantee of success. 

Wing is part of X, formerly known as Google X, which is the company`s R&D unit working on far-out "moonshot" projects, racing against Amazon and drone makers like DJI to usher in what may one day be a massive new market, delivering everything from food to medicine straight to people`s doorsteps.

Stress test

All told, since January, between layoffs and people quitting, Project Wing`s workforce has been reduced by about 10%. However, that`s not very many people, less than a dozen. We understand that Wing employs about 70 people.

The main team that has been dismantled with Project Wing`s reorganization is the one that was working business product strategy, doing things like crafting partnerships with Chipotle and Starbucks, the Wall Street Journal reported last fall and a source close to the project confirmed with Business Insider. A potential partnership with Starbucks was nixed when that happened, as Bloomberg reported at the time. 

Project Wing has experienced a ton of change and turmoil since its beginnings in 2012 and has a reputation for stress and politics, more than one person familiar with the project has told us.

One guy, who was working long hours out-of-doors testing the drone, even collapsed on the job and was briefly hospitalized, sources previously told us. He was later let go as part of the team`s reorganization, people told us.

It`s not clear if Wing`s disruptions will cease now that the final employees whose jobs were cut back in January have moved on.

Grandfathered in

The turmoil stems in part because Wing is one of X`s earliest cornerstone projects, one person speculated to us. This project was created before Google reorganized itself into Alphabet and forced X to implement more stringent business analysis, hiring practices and cost controls on the projects it funded.

Dave VosThese days, it`s difficult to get a job at X, we understand. People can no longer get hired into X just because one of their buddies works there, a marked change from earlier days when the so-called moonshot factory was a freewheeling hive of experimental projects.

Wing`s first leader was famed MIT robotics scientist Nick Roy, who worked there during a two year sabbatical then went back to his tenured job at MIT. Various engineers joined Wing during those earlier years, including people from MIT who followed Roy there and left when he did, our source told us.

Roy was replaced by Vos. And Vos was pushed out by a coup of sorts when a group of employees, led by a trio of managers hired in the earlier era, went to the leader of X, Astro Teller, and made their case against Vos. (Vos did not return our request for comment.)

The initial design of Project Wing, a fixed wing aircraft that took off and landed like a helicopter, had proven to be a bust, and other internal problems plagued the team even as it shifted to a new drone design. Teller sided with the faction of protesters and Vos was out. Each of the three men were then put in charge of crucial elements of the newly designed drone and Teller himself took over as the project`s leader, we understand.

Everyone is watching

Project Wing is being watched at the highest levels of Google. X is Google cofounder Sergey Brin`s baby and he keeps tabs on many of the projects. We understand that he keeps a desk at Project Wing and talks with the team regularly.

Larry Page, the co-founder of Google who is now CEO of its parent company Alphabet, also called out Wing in his annual letter to shareholders just published on Thursday.

"Sergey is continuing to spend time working with the X moonshot factory. They have a number of efforts like Wing, which is doing drone delivery. I also can`t wait for them to launch!" he wrote.

Google Project WingHowever, the person we talked tells us that the drone still needs a lot of work as is not on the verge of becoming its own company and product. This person didn`t estimate when that would happen.

Despite the politics, Alphabet remains committed to the project and says there`s exciting news to be shared soon.

"Project Wing is moving ahead at full speed and we`re enthusiastic about the team`s progress in developing the next phase of our technology. We`re wholeheartedly committed to the moonshot of opening the skies to faster, more efficient transportation of goods, and we look forward to having updates to share in the coming weeks," the spokesperson told us.

SEE ALSO: The alarming inside story of a failed Google acquisition, and an employee who was hospitalized

SEE ALSO: The return of Joe Lonsdale: How the cofounder of multibillion-dollar company Palantir was vilified in Silicon Valley, then bounced back

Join the conversation about this story »

Photo credit: AFP

Pope Francis, head of the Roman Catholic Church, celebrated a mass on Saturday in the presence of more than 25,000 Egyptians from six different Catholic sects at the Air Defense stadium, also known as “30 June” stadium.

The prayers were held amid tight security. Entrance was only allowed to those invited to attend the prayers. Members of Parliament and officials also participated in the mass. The worshipers started to arrive early in the morning to the stadium, waving flags of Egypt and the Vatican to welcome the Pope.

Egypt’s Armed Force organized celebrations that included documentaries displaying the history of the Vatican and the Pope. Other documentaries depicted the Armed Forces while targeting the terrorists who bombed and burnt churches in Egypt.

Pope Francis had arrived in Egypt on Friday for a brief visit during which he met president Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi and Al-Azhar’s Grand Imam Ahmed Al-Tayeb. The Pope also met with Pope Tawadros II to sign a historic agreement whereby the Catholic and Orthodox Churches will recognize the baptism conducted by each other.

Pope Francis’ visit comes less than a month after the Islamic State (IS) had bombed two churches in Egypt, leaving 47 killed and more than 100 injured. At a peace conference in Cairo, Pope Francis  urged the Muslim leaders to unite against the militants that kill the Christians in the name of God.

Pope Francis also prayed at St Paul church where a deadly attack had taken place in December 2016, leaving 29 dead.

“Peaceful worshipers were killed here. Your pain is our pain, your holy blood unites us,” said the Pope during his visit.

He further refused to ride an armored car, saying that Egypt is a peaceful place.

This is the first official visit of the Pope to Egypt since he assumed the Papacy in 2013. However, it’s his second visit to the Middle East after his visit to Jordan and Palestine in 2o14.

Casper Mattress

LONDON — Online mattress and bedding startup Casper doubled sales to 200 million (£154.5 million) last year and is on track to double sales again this year.

Casper`s European MD Constantin Eis told Business Insider on a call this week that, while the company is not explicitly targeting sales of 400 million (£308.8 million) this year, current internal projections based on sales so far this year suggest the fast-growing startup could double sales once again in 2017.

Casper, founded in 2013, famously made 1 million (£770,000) in revenue in just its first 28 days. The startup had 100 million (£77.2 million) in sales in its first full-year of operation and doubled that to 200 million (£154.5 million) last year.

The New York-headquartered business is trying to bring the bedding market into the e-commerce age by selling its custom-made mattresses, pillows, and sheets online. A mattress costs £350 in the UK, while a pillow is £60.

Casper compresses its mattresses into easier to ship boxes and offers customers the ability to return a mattress after sleeping on it for 100 days if they are not happy with it. This sets it apart from traditional retailers who won`t accept bed returns.

Casper`s fast-growth has attracted interest from a range of high-profile and unusual investors. The company raised 55 million (£42.4 million) in 2015 from a range of backers including Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire, Maroon 5 singer Adam Levine, and Justin Bieber`s manager Scooter Braun.

leonardo dicaprioEis, who joined Casper last year, told Business Insider he couldn`t speak for Casper`s high-profile backers but said he thinks they were attracted by the company`s fast growth and the improvement it brought to the experience of buying a new mattress.

Eis wouldn`t comment on whether Casper has plans to raise more money and also wouldn`t be drawn on how much of the 55 million the company still has in the bank.

Casper launched in the UK last August and Eis told BI that sales here have been strong. The UK and Germany are Casper`s biggest markets outside of the US and are a "significant" part of the business, according to Eis.

While Casper pioneered online mattress selling, it is now one of a number of online-focused mattress retailers competing for buyers. Its highest-profile rivals in the UK are Eve Sleep, which is currently considering a £200 million stock market listing in London, and Simba.

Casper, Eve, and Simba`s products all look remarkably similar when compared online. Why should someone choose Casper over its rivals?

Eis pointed to a review in the Independent newspaper, naming Casper its top pick in the UK. (BI was also impressed by the product when it first launched). Eis added that Casper has 25 expert designers in San Francisco dedicated to making the best product.

Eis said he doesn`t think it`s a "winner takes all" market as the mattress industry is so large. He added that Casper and its rivals are really competing with traditional bed retailers, not with each other.

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: How to know if Snapchat stock is a buy or a sell

CAIRO (Reuters) - Pope Francis warned against religious fanaticism on Saturday, wrapping up a brief trip to Cairo where he urged Muslim leaders to unite against violence by Islamic militants threatening to rid the Middle East of its ancient Christian communities.
PARIS (Reuters) - French far-right presidential hopeful Marine Le Pen on Saturday named defeated first-round candidate Nicolas Dupont-Aignan as her chosen prime minister, a bid to attract his voters and help win victory over the centrist favorite Emmanuel Macron.
LONDON (Reuters) - Japan wants to resolve a territorial row that has over-shadowed ties with Russia since World War Two, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Saturday.
ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey`s military killed 14 members of the militant Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) in air strikes in northern Iraq on Saturday, the military said in a statement.
BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Union leaders will endorse a stiff set of divorce terms for Britain at a summit on Saturday, rejoicing in a rare show of unity in adversity, but well aware that may start to fray once negotiations begin.
MOSCOW (Reuters) - Moscow is ready to cooperate with the United States on settling the Syrian crisis, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Saturday, Russian news agencies reported.
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