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Ayman's blog

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain`s interior minister, Amber Rudd, has resigned, the BBC reported, after the government struggled to contain the fallout over the way it has treated some long-term Caribbean immigrants who have wrongly been labeled illegal immigrants.
AMMAN (Reuters) - Syrian state television said on Sunday successive blasts were heard in rural Hama province and that authorities were investigating the cause.
LAHORE, Pakistan (Reuters) - Pakistani opposition figure Imran Khan on Sunday vowed to sweep to power in upcoming elections, promising radical change for the poor at a campaign kick-off rally in the city of Lahore that has long been the power base of ousted premier Nawaz Sharif.
AMMAN (Reuters) - U.S-backed Syrian Democratic Forces said they expelled had Syrian troops that briefly took control of a string of villages in oil rich areas east of the Euphrates river near the Iraqi border on Sunday.

Photo Credit: TEDxCairoUniversity Facebook Page

TEDxCairoUniversity has unleashed its events on April 28 as part of its fourth event titled ‘Metanoia’ hosting multiples speakers to talk about a variety of topics such as science, art and technology among many others.

Public Relations Executive at TEDxCairoUniversity Mirna el-Saied said that the team chose the name ‘Metanoia’ which means a change of heart and a change of mind. She added that the name fits the vision and mission of TEDxCairoUniversity that inspires changes through the exchange of experiences.

“At first, the topics were limited to technology, design and entertainment, but now we aim for diversity in highlighting all fields of interests to the audience,” said el-Saied.

The event presented nine speakers and three performers. Among the speakers was Engineer Muhammed el-Bittar spoke about ‘Laws of Robotics’ shedding lights on the potential and risks it carries on the human life. Explaining the difference between human evolution and robot evolution, el-Bittar introduced the power of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the fact that it lacks consciousness, which is the significance of the human species.

Also, Founder of Entreprenelle Rania Ayman shared her story establishing Entreprenelle, a mission-driven enterprise to minimize the wage gap between both genders and linking women to possible resources to start their own businesses. In partnership with Greenish, founded by Medhat Benzoher, Ayman spoke of the importance of change through passion that carries greater impact to the society.

Entreprenelle organized ‘She Can 2018’ event on 2 March and 3 March that took place in Cairo’s neighbourhood in downtown in Greek Campus aiming at exposing girls and women to success stories of women in the Egyptian society.

Airspace Engineer Samar Abd el-Fattah spoke about career consciousness; speaking about satisfaction and efficiency Abd el-Fattah listed three main challenges facing most youth starting with capitalism, social construction leading to an identity crisis. Simplifying these big words, Abd el-Fattah stressed the importance of defining our identity as individuals, which is the building block that guides us through life choices and big decisions.

Associate Professor of Mass Communication Mona Magdy spoke of the addiction to the internet presenting her skepticism towards the nature of the virtual reality in relation to our social lives. Stressing the importance of ‘offline time’, Magdy explained the difference between the world virtual reality and our reality adding the importance of merging them together.

Among the speakers were Assem Abdel Wahab time management and Amina Diab, a mom to two children, psychologist, parent educator and a coach spoke about the importance of building a strong child-parent relationship that helps define the child’s personality. 

Between the talks, the event hosted a variety of talents such as a stand-up Comedy show by Comedian Mahmoud Konafa and a mime show titled Al Leila Al Sameta – or the Silent Night – by performers Abd Allah Waleed and Abd Allah al-Ady and a show by Muhammed Essam, an engineering graduate who turned his passion for physics into art by making physics experiments.

 

To watch videos of the talks, visit #TEDxCairoUniversity Facebook page.

TIJUANA, Mexico (Reuters) - Members of a Central American migrant caravan that drew the wrath of President Donald Trump during its month-long journey through Mexico to the U.S. border faced hard choices on Sunday, as they decided whether to cross illegally into the United States, ask for asylum at the border or try to remain in Mexico.
LONDON (Reuters) - Britain, France and Germany have agreed that the nuclear deal that U.S. President Donald Trump has threatened to scrap remains the best way of stopping Tehran getting nuclear weapons, British Prime Minister Theresa May`s office said on Sunday.

Avangard hypersonic glide vehicle

  • Russia, China, and the US are competing in a hypersonic weapons arms race.
  • These weapons can travel at above mach 5 and are maneuverable, making them extremely difficult to intercept.
  • Comments by US officials about Russia and China`s recent gains have led some to believe that the US is currently losing the race.
  • The situation is more complex — Russia and China appear to be ahead of the US in terms of nuclear-capable hypersonic weapons, but the US is leading the way in hypersonic weapons that carry conventional payloads.


Three of the most powerful nations on Earth — Russia, China, and the US — are in an arms race for hypersonic weapons and the US might be lagging behind.

Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis said at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing this week that "hypersonics is the number one priority," for the US military`s research and development.

"Both having them for ourselves, but also the defense against them. It is our number one priority in the developing technology" realm, he said. 

Hypersonic weapons, along with AI, direct energy weapons, and robotics "will change the character of war," Mattis explained in his opening statement.

There are two types of hypersonic weapons — hypersonic cruise missiles (HCMs), and hypersonic glide vehicles (HGVs). Both are capable of traveling at mach five or above — roughly 3,800 miles per hour or 340 miles every six minutes — and both are maneuverable.

Whereas a ballistic missile can have its flight path determined by momentum and gravity, hypersonic weapons can change direction mid-flight, and keep their intended targets secret until impact. This ability, coupled with their speed, makes hypersonic weapons extremely difficult to intercept.

Russia openly brags about its hypersonic ambitions and gains

Hypersonic Weapons

Russia has openly bragged about its hypersonic ambitions and successes. Russian President Vladimir Putin introduced a number of new weapons at his State of the Union address in March, two of which were hypersonic — an HCM and an HGV.

The HCM is called the Kh-47M2 Kinzhal, which is Russian for "Dagger." The missile is launched from an aircraft and reportedly has a top speed of Mach 10 — roughly 7,672 miles per hour. Russia also claims that it has a range of 1,200 miles, or approximately 2,000 kilometers.

A video of a demonstration launch was released by the Russian Aerospace Forces, and shows the Kinzhal being launched from a MiG-31BM supersonic interceptor. 

Kh 47M2 Kinzhal hypersonic.

The MiG-31BM itself has a reported range of 1,860 miles unrefueled, which means that the Kinzhal may have intercontinental strike capability. Russia is also working in cooperation with India on another HCM, the Brahmos-II, which was tested in November 2017. That missile reportedly reached Mach 7, and had a range of 180 miles (200 kilometers).

The second weapon is the Avangard HGV, which is supposed to be launched from either a UR-100UTTKh or RS-28 intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). No photos of the glider have been shown, but a video shows an animation of an Avangard being launched and maneuvering away from missile defenses.

Weeks after Putin announced the Kinzhal, US Air Force General John E. Hyten, the Commander of US Strategic Command, was asked how the US could respond to hypersonic weapons.

"We don`t have any defense that could deny the employment of such a weapon against us," Hyten said.

The general said that the only "defense" the US had was the threat of nuclear retaliation, adding, "our response would be our deterrent force, which would be the Triad and the nuclear capabilities that we have to respond to such a threat."

China is known to be a leader, but is mostly quiet about its progress

China has the only known operational HGV, known as the DF-ZF and reported by the Pentagon as the WU-14. 

The glider has been tested at least seven times, and has a reported range of around 1,242 miles, or 2,000 kilometers. It has reportedly reached speeds of Mach 5 and Mach 10 — about 3,836 miles per hour (6,173 kph) and 7,680 miles per hour (12,359 kph).

The DF-ZF will reportedly be deployed as early as 2020, though some analysts believe that China is still about a decade away from fielding a missile that can carry the HGV.

hypersonic_glide_vehicles

China is also reportedly building the world`s fastest wind tunnel, which it claimed will be able test travel speeds of up to Mach 25 (19,000 miles an hour), considered to be the upper limit of hypersonic speeds.

Mike Griffin, the US undersecretary of defense for research and engineering recently said at a Senate Armed Services hearing that "China has fielded or can field ... hypersonic delivery systems for conventional prompt strike than can reach out thousands of kilometers from the Chinese shore, and hold our carrier battle groups or our forward deployed forces ... at risk."

He added that the US does "not have systems which can hold them at risk in a corresponding manner," that the US doesn`t "have defenses against those systems," and that  "we will, with today`s defensive systems, not see these things coming."

The US seems like it`s falling behind, but it`s not that simple

Compared to these developments and the numerous statements by US officials warning about the danger of falling behind Russia and China in the race for hypersonics, there is a belief that the US may already be last place.

But some experts cast doubt on those beliefs, at least in some ways. 

"The evidence available in the open source suggests to me that the US is still the leader in these technologies," James Acton, a senior fellow and co-director of the Nuclear Policy Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace told Business Insider. He warned, however, that that lead "is not guaranteed forever."

Acton points out that the US has been researching hypersonic technology for over a decade. "If you look at the US program holistically, we’ve done a lot more than Russia and China have," he said.

Boeing X 51 Hypersonic cruise missile

There are at least three different HGV or HGV related projects that the US is undertaking — the Advanced Hypersonic Weapon, which seen at least three tests, the Tactical Boost Glide Program, and the Advanced Full Range Engine program.

The US was also one of the first countries to test a hypersonic cruise missile, in the form of the Boeing-made X-51 Waverider in 2010.

Additionally, the Air Force recently awarded Lockheed Martin a contract worth up to 1 billion for the development of an HCM.

The three major players may have different objectives

Acton also notes that "Russian and Chinese objectives appear to be a lot less demanding than US objectives." Specifically, Russia and China seem to be focusing on equipping their hypersonic weapons with nuclear warheads, whereas the US is focused on conventional weapons.

Hypersonics were "always intended for conventional use," according to George Nacouzi, a senior engineer at the RAND Corporation.

"As a matter of fact, one of the potential uses involved not putting a warhead on HGVs at all, since it is going so fast that it could destroy relatively hard targets with kinetic energy alone," Nacouzi told Business Insider.

hypersonic_glide_vehicle

While still extremely dangerous, and challenging to build in their own way, nuclear hypersonics do not require the level of precision that conventional hypersonic weapons require. 

"Every indication is that the US does not have any intention of putting nuclear warheads on hypersonic glide vehicles," Nacouzi said, adding that "it`s apparent that Russia and China do plan on equipping hypersonic weapons with nuclear warheads."

Russian and Chinese hypersonic development is likely focused on defeating US missile defense systems. “Both these nations, China and Russia — especially Russia — have been pretty vocal about their worries about the US` missile defenses. They worry that if the US can defeat their missiles, then their deterrence value goes away," Nacouzi said.

“Hypersonic weapons, specifically hypersonic glide vehicles, would be able to at least get past those defenses," he added. 

SEE ALSO: Hypersonic weapons can make virtually all missile defenses useless — and destabilize the world order

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Jeff Bezos reveals what it’s like to build an empire and become the richest man in the world — and why he`s willing to spend 1 billion a year to fund the most important mission of his life

tongue pills vitamins supplements mouth

  • Seed, a new company with some big names behind it, is about to break into the 38-billion probiotics industry
  • They aim to rely on real science to create their product, a probiotic designed to support the vibrant ecosystem of bacteria in your gut.
  • Seed`s scientific advisory board includes a microbiologist who chaired the World Health Organization panel that first defined the term "probiotics."
  • Investors include actors Cameron Diaz and Jessica Biel as well as entrepreneur Peter Thiel.


Seed, a new company with some big names behind it, is about to sprout onto the 38-billion probiotics scene — with a product that is designed to improve your digestion and health based on scientific research.

As supplements, probiotics are largely unregulated by the US Food and Drug Administration. That means that most of them don`t have any proven scientific results.

Seed aims to be different.

Backed by Cameron Diaz, Jessica Biel, Karlie Kloss, and Peter Thiel`s Founders Fund, Seed is slated to launch this week with a probiotic that is informed by peer-reviewed scientific research. The product`s ingredients were selected based on results of clinical trials.

The company is being steered by a team of scientists who study the microbiome, the delicate ecosystem of bacteria blossoming in our gut. Probiotics are meant to foster that ecosystem.

Ara Katz, one of Seed`s co-founders and CEOs, told Business Insider that the company wants to "improve the standards of probiotics and bridge microbiome science — not the commercialization and the dilution of the term, but actually reclaim the term `probiotics` for science."

Still, Seed`s probiotics are not drugs. As such, they cannot make claims to treat or prevent any condition or disease. But they can claim to improve overall health — which the probiotics industry thus far has largely failed to demonstrate it can do.

Here`s what to know about the new supplements and what they may be able to do for you.

Other probiotics likely never make it to your gut

abs situps workout fitness exercise woman gym sit upsFor years, pricey pills that claim to improve digestion and wellness by fostering the growth of beneficial bacteria in your gut have dominated the supplement scene. Probiotics are a big business, with a market that some analysts have said could rake in 64 billion in ingredient sales over the next four years.

But while the probiotic industry has boomed, the bacteria in our guts have failed to respond in kind.

Most scientific studies suggest the pills do very little to help our stomachs and may not even provide any measurable benefits to our overall health at all. That`s because very few of the beneficial bacteria in the supplements make it to our guts or stick around long enough to have an effect, Ian Orme, a professor of microbiology at Colorado State University, told Business Insider.

But a new kind of supplement could change that.

Synbiotics are the future of the probiotics industry

prescription-pills-medicine-in-handSeed`s supplement isn`t just a probiotic. It`s a synbiotic, meaning that in addition to beneficial bacteria, it includes another ingredient called a prebiotic.

Prebiotics are designed to keep helpful microbes alive. The combination of the two is synergistic, meaning each ingredient is designed to enhance the other`s effect — hence the term syn-biotic.

Studies suggest that synbiotics accomplish their goal using a one-two punch: while the probiotic settles in and pushes out the "bad" bacteria, the prebiotic — essentially a sugar — acts as its food supply, ensuring the supplement sticks around and does its job.

"There’s kind of a notion that it’s two products in one," Katz told Business Insider of Seed`s supplement.

In the first large-scale clinical trial of synbiotics last year, researchers working in rural India found that newborns who were given a synbiotic were at a substantially lower risk of developing sepsis, a potentially fatal condition characterized by severe infection.

Some small studies have suggested that synbiotics could provide benefits related to a range of other conditions influenced by the gut microbiome as well, including obesity, diabetes, and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. But the FDA has yet to approve any drugs made using those ingredients.

Still, Gregor Reid, Seed`s chief scientific officer and a microbiologist at Canada`s Western University, believes the company is onto something.

"I started on this journey over 35 years ago when people laughed at the idea of probiotics," said Reid, who chaired the United Nations and World Health Organization panel that first defined the term.

"It’s been a long journey but I think it’s exciting that all our work on the microbiome has led to this step. This really is the next phase of probiotics," he added.

The science that went into Seed and future directions for the company

Before coming up with an ingredient list, Seed`s team looked at several peer-reviewed studies on strains of bacteria and kinds of prebiotics (the "food" for that bacteria).

The final product — capsules that are designed to be taken three times a day — reflects that work, Katz told Business Insider.

The company`s prebiotics are sourced from Scandinavian pine bark, Indian pomegranate skin, and a special type of mushroom. Its bacterial strains are the ones studies suggested were the most closely linked with measurable health outcomes.

One of those studies, published last year in the journal PLOS One, suggested that taking one of the strains of bacteria in Seed`s product was linked with reductions in LDL or "bad" cholesterol and increases in HDL or "good" cholesterol.

That promising result could mean that someone taking Seed`s supplement might see moderate cholesterol benefits, but that effect is still untested for Seed`s final product.

Seed aims to finish its own clinical trials on the product this month, Katz said.

"We’re really aiming to raise the bar of how the scientific process is done," he said.

SEE ALSO: Why a pill with barely any health benefits could be the `most important` new supplement in 20 years

DON`T MISS: The 37 billion supplement industry is barely regulated — and it`s allowing dangerous products to slip through the cracks

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: You`re probably bending over all wrong — here`s the right way to do it

CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt said on Sunday it wants talks over a dam Ethiopia is building speeded up in a sign of its apparent frustration over what it sees as footdragging by Addis Ababa over the dispute.

Sergey Brin

  • Google cofounder Sergei Brin wrote Alphabet`s 2017 annual Founders Letter.
  • Brin said artificial intelligence advances represent the most significant computing development in his lifetime.
  • But he warned that tech companies have a responsbility to consider the impact of their advances on society, a chage in tone. 


Sergei Brin, the cof0under of Google, stressed the need for caution, accountability and humility within the tech industry as its innovations become "deeply and irrevocably" ingrained in society, a striking shift in tone among a leader of the Silicon Valley business cohort famous for its certitude of its own righteousness.

In the annual founders letter released by Google-parent company Alphabet, Brin touted the far-reaching innovations in artificial intelligence, computing power and speech recognition in recent years. 

"Every month, there are stunning new applications and transformative new techniques. In this sense, we are truly in a technology renaissance, " Brin wrote in the letter published on Alphabet`s investor relations site on Friday. Advances in artificial intelligence, he said, represent the "most significant development in computing in my lifetime."

But Brin said the tech industry could no longer maintain its "wide-eyed and idealistic" attitude about the impact of its creations. 

"There are very legitimate and pertinent issues being raised, across the globe, about the implications and impacts of these advances," Brin said. 

Among these issues: 

"How will they affect employment across different sectors? How can we understand what they are doing under the hood? What about measures of fairness? How might they manipulate people? Are they safe?"

Brin has seemed dismissive of "hypothetical situations" in the past

The comments come as the tech industry, which represent the most valuable companies in the American economy, has come under fire for a variety of issues, including the collection and misuse of people`s personal information (as highlighted by Facebook`s Cambridge Analytica scandal), the spread of misinformation, propaganda and hate speech on services like YouTube, Google and Facebook, and a growing anxiety about our dependence on smartphones.

Brin has been an important figure in the development of technologies once considered the stuff of science fiction, helping to shape the Google X labs where products like self-driving cars, face-worn computers and airborne delivery drones were born. 

The 44-year old Russian-born executive has at times shown himself to be dismissive of the public`s concerns regarding potential impacts of technological advances, labeling some as "hypothetical situations."

"We can debate as philosophers, but the fact is that we can make cars that are far safer than human drivers," Brin said at a tech conference in 2014, when asked about the ethics involved in creating self-driving cars that must choose between hitting a pedestrian or a truck. 

In March, the first self-driving car fatality oc cured in Arizona when an Atmos Uber vehicle struck a pedestrian at night (human-driven cars are involved in more than 35,000 traffic fatalities per year in the US). 

"There is serious thought and research going into all of these issues," Brin wrote in the founder`s letter on Friday. 
"Most notably, safety spans a wide range of concerns from the fears of sci-fi style sentience to the more near-term questions such as validating the performance of self-driving cars."

Here`s Sergei Brin`s full 2017 letter: 

It was the best of times,
it was the worst of times,
it was the age of wisdom,
it was the age of foolishness,
it was the epoch of belief,
it was the epoch of incredulity,
it was the season of Light,
it was the season of Darkness,
it was the spring of hope,
it was the winter of despair ...”

So begins Dickens’ “A Tale of Two Cities,” and what a great articulation it is of the transformative time we live in. We’re in an era of great inspiration and possibility, but with this opportunity comes the need for tremendous thoughtfulness and responsibility as technology is deeply and irrevocably interwoven into our societies.

Computation Explosion

The power and potential of computation to tackle important problems has never been greater. In the last few years, the cost of computation has continued to plummet. The Pentium IIs we used in the first year of Google performed about 100 million floating point operations per second. The GPUs we use today perform about 20 trillion such operations — a factor of about 200,000 difference — and our very own TPUs are now capable of 180 trillion (180,000,000,000,000) floating point operations per second.

Even these startling gains may look small if the promise of quantum computing comes to fruition. For a specialized class of problems, quantum computers can solve them exponentially faster. For instance, if we are successful with our 72 qubit prototype, it would take millions of conventional computers to be able to emulate it. A 333 qubit error-corrected quantum computer would live up to our name, offering a 10,000,000,000,000,000, 000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000, 000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000, 000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000x speedup.

There are several factors at play in this boom of computing. First, of course, is the steady hum of Moore’s Law, although some of the traditional measures such as transistor counts, density, and clock frequencies have slowed. The second factor is greater demand, stemming from advanced graphics in gaming and, surprisingly, from the GPU-friendly proof-of-work algorithms found in some of today’s leading cryptocurrencies, such as Ethereum. However, the third and most important factor is the profound revolution in machine learning that has been building over the past decade. It is both made possible by these increasingly powerful processors and is also the major impetus for developing them further.

The Spring of Hope

The new spring in artificial intelligence is the most significant development in computing in my lifetime. When we started the company, neural networks were a forgotten footnote in computer science; a remnant of the AI winter of the 1980’s. Yet today, this broad brush of technology has found an astounding number of applications. We now use it to:

  • understand images in Google Photos;
  • enable Waymo cars to recognize and distinguish objects safely;
  • significantly improve sound and camera quality in our hardware;
  • understand and produce speech for Google Home;
  • translate over 100 languages in Google Translate;
  • caption over a billion videos in 10 languages on YouTube;
  • improve the efficiency of our data centers;
  • suggest short replies to emails;
  • help doctors diagnose diseases, such as diabetic retinopathy;
  • discover new planetary systems;
  • create better neural networks (AutoML);
    ... and much more.

Every month, there are stunning new applications and transformative new techniques. In this sense, we are truly in a technology renaissance, an exciting time where we can see applications across nearly every segment of modern society.

However, such powerful tools also bring with them new questions and responsibilities. How will they affect employment across different sectors? How can we understand what they are doing under the hood? What about measures of fairness? How might they manipulate people? Are they safe?

There is serious thought and research going into all of these issues. Most notably, safety spans a wide range of concerns from the fears of sci-fi style sentience to the more near-term questions such as validating the performance of self-driving cars. A few of our noteworthy initiatives on AI safety are as follows:

I expect machine learning technology to continue to evolve rapidly and for Alphabet to continue to be a leader — in both the technological and ethical evolution of the field.

G is for Google

Roughly three years ago, we restructured the company as Alphabet, with Google as a subsidiary (albeit far larger than the rest). As I write this, Google is in its 20th year of existence and continues to serve ever more people with information and technology products and services. Over one billion people now use Search, YouTube, Maps, Play, Gmail, Android, and Chrome every month.

This widespread adoption of technology creates new opportunities, but also new responsibilities as the social fabric of the world is increasingly intertwined.

Expectations about technology can differ significantly based on nationality, cultural background, and political affiliation. Therefore, Google must evolve its products with ever more care and thoughtfulness.

The purpose of Alphabet has been to allow new applications of technology to thrive with greater independence. While it is too early to declare the strategy a success, I am cautiously optimistic. Just a few months ago, the Onduo joint venture between Verily and Sanofi launched their first offering to help people with diabetes manage the disease. Waymo has begun operating fully self-driving cars on public roads and has crossed 5 million miles of testing. Sidewalk Labs has begun a large development project in Toronto. And Project Wing has performed some of the earliest drone deliveries in Australia.

There remains a high level of collaboration. Most notably, our two machine learning centers of excellence — Google Brain (an X graduate) and DeepMind — continue to bring their expertise to projects throughout Alphabet and the world. And the Nest subsidiary has now officially rejoined Google to form a more robust hardware group.

The Epoch of Belief and the Epoch of Incredulity

Technology companies have historically been wide- eyed and idealistic about the opportunities that their innovations create. And for the overwhelming part, the arc of history shows that these advances, including the Internet and mobile devices, have created opportunities and dramatically improved the quality of life for billions of people. However, there are very legitimate and pertinent issues being raised, across the globe, about the implications and impacts of these advances. This is an important discussion to have. While I am optimistic about the potential to bring technology to bear on the greatest problems in the world, we are on a path that we must tread with deep responsibility, care, and humility. That is Alphabet’s goal.

SEE ALSO: Engineers from Apple and Google are loving this viral Twitter challenge about describing their job in 5 words

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Why Apple makes it so hard to get a new iPhone battery

Blue_Origin

  • Blue Origin successfully launched the eighth test flight of its New Shephard rocket on Sunday.
  • The liftoff and landing were textbook.
  • Founder Jeff Bezos told the CEO of Business Insider`s parent company, Axel Springer, this week that Blue Origin is "the most important work that I`m doing."

Blue Origin, Jeff Bezos` private rocket company, launched the New Shephard rocket`s eighth test flight from West Texas on Sunday.

New Shephard reached space, cruising at 2,200 mph at one point, then came back down for a textbook autonomous landing on the launchpad.

A sonic boom shook the area as the booster sped back to Earth.

Blue_Origin landing

It was the second time they were reusing the rocket, the commentator on the company`s livestream said.

The company`s scientists and engineers have quietly been working on New Shephard for years in the desert of West Texas.

After a few delays because of thunderstorms and final safety checks, the reusable rocket lifted off just after 1 p.m. ET.

"Mannequin Skywalker" was also onboard:

Mannequin Skywalker is ready for his 2nd mission on board New Shepard. He’s a little sensitive about being called a “dummy”, as he will be conducting astronaut telemetry and science studies – a very important job! pic.twitter.com/h2ncpGWaTi

— Blue Origin (@blueorigin) April 28, 2018

The capsule with the mannequin inside softly glided back to Earth with parachutes a few minutes after the booster returned.

`Opening space for all`

bezosinberlin1

If New Shephard is Bezos` and Bule Origin`s answer to Elon Musk and SpaceX`s Falcon 9 rocket, the New Glenn rocket under development will be their answer to Falcon Heavy, the largest rocket in use today. SpaceX`s first Falcon Heavy test flight was in February.

"Reusability allows us to fly the system again and again," Blue Origin writes on its website. "With each flight, we’ll continuously improve the affordability of space exploration and research, opening space for all."

Musk has a similar reason for making SpaceX rockets reusable — it costs a ton of money to send things into space. He and Bezos argue that if they can reuse rockets, it can significantly cut that cost, and make space travel and exploration much easier.

This week, Bezos told Mathias Döpfner, the CEO of Business Insider`s parent company, Axel Springer, that Blue Origin is "the most important work that I`m doing." He also said they plan to put humans in the rockets for test flights at the end of this year or the beginning of 2019.

"Take the scenario, where you move out into the Solar System," Bezos said. "The Solar System can easily support a trillion humans. And if we had a trillion humans, we would have a thousand Einsteins and a thousand Mozarts and unlimited (for all practical purposes) resources and solar power unlimited for all practical purposes. That`s the world that I want my great-grandchildren`s great-grandchildren to live in."

SEE ALSO: Jeff Bezos just launched a dummy called `Mannequin Skywalker` into space and safely returned it to Earth

DON`T MISS: Jeff Bezos just revealed a mock-up of the spacecraft his rocket company will use to take tourists into space

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Jeff Bezos reveals what it’s like to build an empire and become the richest man in the world — and why he`s willing to spend 1 billion a year to fund the most important mission of his life

Andy Wilson, CEO and co-founder of Logikcull

  • Legal tech startup Logikcull provides eDiscovery software, helping lawyers sift through massive piles of documents. It competes with the likes of Symantec and Microsoft.
  • Logikcull raised 22 million in January, even though it didn`t need it, says Wilson. The CEO tells us it`s because Logikcull has surged in popularity in the legal world. 
  • Its best-known customer might be the legal team representing the gymnasts suing Michigan State University for its role in the Larry Nassar case.

Logikcull, a San Francisco-based startup that makes eDiscovery software, didn`t need the money when Silicon Valley venture firm New Enterprise Associates approached the company last year. Yet, the firm gave Logikcull 22 million, preempting its next funding round, the company announced in January. 

Logikcull didn`t need the cash because, a year earlier, business had "exploded," CEO Andy Wilson told Business Insider. The company`s headcount has expanded from 35 to over 100. And customer count has increased 500% in under a year.

"To be honest, we really weren`t ready for it," Wilson said. "We were averaging a few customers a month before, now we get 70 to 80 per month."

Logikcull lets users drag and drop large amounts of data — such as emails, slack messages, texts, and office documents — into a database that can easily searched. For lawyers, this is especially important during the process of Discovery, the part of a lawsuit where each party requests evidence and information from the other side before trial.

There`s already eDiscovery software on a the market that lets lawyers sort and organize documents online. The market is set to hit 18.49 billion by 2021, according to Zion Research, and the industry is has some big players such as Dell, Symantec, IBM, and LexisNexis.

But eDiscovery can be expensive, sometimes costing five or six figures for a yearly subscription or license. Logikcull, by comparison, is one of a few eDiscovery startups that have adopted a "pay-as-you-go" model. Instead of a yearly subscription, users now pay 40 for every gigabyte of data uploaded. Wilson attributes Logikcull`s recent success to the pricing model.

 

Logikcull interface

Leveling the playing field

Logikcull is particularly popular with people representing themselves in court, and at smaller law firms that don`t have the budget to spend on old-school eDiscovery software, Wilson says — although he notes that big name firms and large companies are customers too.

Recently, the legal team representing the gymnasts suing Michigan State University for its role in the Larry Nassar case, used Logikcull to sort through a massive hoard of documents from the university. In a less public example, we spoke to a lawyer in rural Flordia who says she used Logikcull in a case where she uncovered a massive health insurance scam.

"It was a breath of fresh air. I was able to do all of the work it was taking them days and weeks to do, I was able to do it in hours" Michelle Jordan, the lawyer in Florida, told Business Insider.

In this way, Wilson said, Logikcull is leveling the playing field so smaller firms can fight "data dumps," a legal strategy that involves burying the other side with so many documents, their legal team is forced to spend all of their time sorting through them, instead of planning a strategy. 

"Do you think it`s in the best interest of a larger adversary to make your life easier, especially the smaller guys? For a long time, that was a great strategy because the little guy didn`t have s--t," Wilson said.

The tool has even spread beyond the legal profession, says Wilson. Business teams use Logikcull when doing due diligence on a company its thinking of acquiring or investing in. Wilson has seen Logikcull used for internal investigations and audits. Governments — from the city of Baltimore to small towns — use Logikcull to process Freedom of Information Act requests from journalists, a usage that is becoming increasing popular, Wilson said.

"Pre-Logikcull, it was taking them an average of three weeks to comply with every [Freedom of Information Act] request, they would have to print things out and manually redact them. Now, they do all of that stuff same day," Wilson said.

SEE ALSO: MIT researchers created a new tool that lets your `squad` combat online harassment

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NOW WATCH: Shocking footage shows a pipe spewing blood into public waters — and it`s totally legal

TEL AVIV (Reuters) - The United States is deeply concerned by Iran`s "destabilizing and malign activities", new Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said after meeting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday.
AMMAN (Reuters) - U.S-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) said on Sunday they expelled Syrian troops that briefly took control of a string of villages in oil rich areas east of the Euphrates river near the Iraqi border.

snapchat spectacles glasses

Last week, Snapchat`s parent company Snap Inc. introduced its second-generation camera glasses, called Spectacles.

I actually tried the first-generation Snapchat Spectacles in November 2016, and I have to say, as much as I loved the concept behind the camera glasses, I wasn`t impressed with the overall design or execution of this particular vision.

Unfortunately, the new second-generation Spectacles don`t solve the biggest problems I had with the first model:

First, the pros: Snap did make some improvements in Spectacles 2.0.



The new Spectacles are slimmer, and so is the charging case it comes with.



Snap also removed those ugly yellow circles around each camera from the 1.0 model, which you can see below.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

john legere t-mobile

The boards of T-Mobile and Sprint have put the finishing touches on a massive merger agreement that values the combined company at 146 billion.

T-Mobile USA chief executive officer John Legere made the announcement by tweeting a seven-minute video breaking down the merger, also including a link to a website further explaining the combination.

I’m excited to announce that @TMobile & @Sprint
have reached an agreement to come together to form a new company – a larger, stronger competitor that will be a force for positive change for all US consumers and businesses! Watch this & click through for details.

— John Legere (@JohnLegere) April 29, 2018

Legere will be CEO of the newly combined entity, will keep the T-Mobile name, and have headquarters located in both Bellevue, Wash. and Overland Park, Kan.

The deal, which will combine the third- and fourth-largest US wireless carriers,  is expected to come under serious scrutiny from antitrust regulators. 

"This combination will create a fierce competitor with the network scale to deliver more for consumers and businesses in the form of lower prices, more innovation, and a second-to-none network experience — and do it all so much faster than either company could on its own," Legere said in an official statement

The all-stock transaction values Sprint at 0.10256 per T-Mobile share, or 6.62 a share, based on T-Mobile`s last closing price. That valued Sprint at around 26 billion.

This story is developing. Refresh for updates.

SEE ALSO: `They`re changing the whole way that commerce works` — BlackRock`s 1.8 trillion bond chief explains how millennials are spearheading an economic revolution

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NOW WATCH: Wall Street`s biggest bull explains why trade war fears are way overblown

CAIRO - 29 April 2018: Head of the Egyptian Endowment Authority Ahmed Abdel Hafez has been relieved of his post less than a year from his appointment, according to a Sunday announcement by the cabinet.

The cabinet is yet to release a detailed statement on the decision, as well as figures nominated to replace him. However, informed sources have said Minister of Endowments Mokhtar Gomaa requested the Administrative Prosecution and the Accountability and State Authority to determine the feasibility of the authority`s recent sale of some of its shares to the Housing and Development Bank.

The authority was first established in 1835, and regulated by law in 1971. It manages the assets and properties of charitable trusts in the form of shares in banks such and companies.

In return, the authority receives 25 percent of the revenue and 75 percent are received by the Endowments Ministry.
CAIRO - 29 April 2018: Attorney General Nabil Sadek ordered to open an investigation into fire swept through under-construction Grand Egyptian Museum Conference Building in Giza on Sunday.

Inspectors and investigators have been mandated to probe into the incident, as per the prosecution`s decision.

The fire was extinguished two hours after it swept through in the building. 10 fire engines have been deployed to the scene to contain the situation.

No casualties have yet been reported. The reasons behind of the blaze are yet to be clarified.

CAIRO - 29 April 2018: Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation Mohamed Abdel Ati stressed Saturday that there is no relation between the crisis over the construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) and the government’s decision to reduce the area allocated to rice agriculture in Egypt.

During his visit to Dakahlia to lay the foundation stone and inaugurate several projects exceeding LE 200 million, Abdel Ati referred that Egypt had started to reduce rice agriculture areas before the dam was built to rationalize water irrigation due to the limited amount of water and the continuously growing population.

“Rice crops waste huge amounts of water, which could be used in cultivating other crops; hence, rice cultivation has been codified to limit their areas to rationalize water usage,” he added.

Abdel Ati remarked that the amount of cultivated rice that has been determined by the government will suffice domestic consumption in Egypt, stressing that the ministry will not allow for any violation in this regard.

This comes after the Associated Press referred on April 23 that Egypt`s parliament passed a law banning the cultivation of some crops that require a large amount of water, amid fears that building the GERD would cut the country`s share of the Nile.

Parliament approved on Sunday the government-drafted law to amend some provisions in Agriculture Law No. 53 of 1966.

During the plenary session attended by the ministers of water resources and irrigation and agriculture, a plan to fairly distribute available water amongst agricultural crops was reviewed.

Article 1 in the Agriculture Law refers that the minister of agriculture shall determine the areas to cultivate certain crops, and shall ban other crops in certain areas. Hence, the draft law to amend Article 1 of the Agriculture Law stipulates that the minister of agriculture in coordination with the minister of irrigation shall issue a ministerial decree to ban the cultivation of some crops in certain areas that have low amounts of water, in order to rationalize water usage.

In the same context, the government agreed to amend Article 101 of the law, which stipulates those who violate the ministerial decrees issued to implement Articles 1, 2, 3, and 4 of the Agriculture Law shall be punished with a fine no less than LE 20,000, and no more than LE 50,000.

According to the amended Article 101, those who violate Articles 1, 2, 3, and 4 shall be punished by imprisonment for a period that does not exceed six months and a fine no less than LE 3,000 and no more than LE 20,000.

Water efficiency is considered one of Egypt`s national security issues; the Nile River is the country’s most important water source.

The ancient Egyptian culture was built on the sides of the river; the Nile provides Egypt with 95 percent of its water. In 1902, 1906, 1929 and 1959, Cairo signed agreements with the Nile Basin countries which guarantee 55 billion cubic meters of Nile water per year for Egypt.

Egypt suffers from a water deficit of 30 billion cubic meters; it annually needs at least 90 billion cubic meters of water to cover the needs of 90 million citizens. However, it currently has only 60 billion cubic meters, of which 55.5 billion cubic meters comes from the Nile and just under five billion cubic meters comes from non-renewable subterranean water in the desert.

A further decrease in Egypt`s water resources is expected amid the construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), which could have a negative impact on Egypt’s Nile water share.

Despite the latest negotiations between Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan to resolve the technical issues of the dam, Egypt is keen to look for new sources of water and to rationalize its usage to overcome any water scarcity problems in the future.

Agriculture in Egypt depends heavily on the Nile River, and it consumes 84 percent of Egypt’s water resources; therefore, the state is working on keeping its water security as much as it can through taking procedures that may help ration water.

The government starts with Agriculture to save water

The government has taken procedures aiming to ration water consumption through preventing the cultivation of certain crops that need large amounts of water.

Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources Mohamed Abdel Ati decided to reduce the rice agriculture area in Egypt from 1,700,000 feddans to 724,200 feddans (1 feddan = 1.038 acres). According to the ministry, this decline will save three billion cubic meters of water. At the same time, the ministry is working on launching campaigns to raise farmers’ awareness to reduce water usage.

On the other hand, some experts expect that reducing the rice cultivated areas will lead to a decrease in production, decrease the quantities offered in the markets and lead to higher prices and a trend towards imports to cover the needs of the local market to insure food security.

The Ministry of Agriculture has identified 53 varieties of strategic water-saving crops that are adapted to the different environment and climate conditions, focusing on breeding during the coming period, which included seven varieties of rice.

Additional Report by Rehab Ismail

The site in Matareya District, photo credit: Ministry of Antiquities

The Ain Shams University archaeological mission has uncovered a royal celebrations hall dating back to the era of Ramses in Matareya district, according to a statement by Ministry of Antiquities.

Head of the excavation, Mamdouh al-Damati, considers the hall “the first of its kind” from the New Kingdom period. It was discovered inside the palace used to host royal celebrations; from this, al-Damati infers that it was where the King must have celebrated royal events like the Jubilee feast. He stated that “it was discovered under the soft brick buildings and the commercial residential area which date back to the third transition period, especially the era of the families of the twenty-second and twenty-third.”

In addition, to the royal celebrations hall, which has a rectangular floor measuring 2.90m x 1.90m that consists of limestone tiles and rises 80 cm from the ground, a collection of brick walls belonging to a multi-story building were also uncovered, which reveal the three phases of construction dating back to the Ramses era.

Important artefacts were also found at the site, including a painting of the high priests of the Sun Prince Nept Ma Raa, five stone blocks carved from the reign of Ramses II, pottery figures dating to the 27th Dynasty, and the lower portion of a priests’ statue from the Ramses era.

YEREVAN (Reuters) - Armenia`s ruling party said on Sunday it would not stop protest leader Nikol Pashinyan becoming interim prime minister if all opposition factions in parliament support his candidacy.

avengers infinity war 1

  • Disney/Marvel Studio`s "Avengers: Infinity War" wins the domestic box office with an estimated 250 million.
  • That makes it the biggest opening of all-time, domestically.

Marvel/Disney`s long-awaited "Avengers: Infinity War" proved its box office might over the weekend as it took in an estimated 250 million at the domestic box office, according to boxofficepro. That`s the biggest of all-time.

The movie that culminates everything that has occurred in the Marvel Cinematic Universe for the last decade since Robert Downey Jr. put on the Iron Man suite in 2008, "Infinity War" follows The Avengers and the Guardians of the Galaxy as they battle the evil Thanos (voiced by Josh Brolin), who wants to possess all the Infinity Stones so he can destroy half of the universe`s population.

With the movie`s enormously high stakes, fans both super and casual alike of the MCU flocked to the multiplex to see the movie, if not for the simple reason to make sure they weren`t left out of the talk on social media and around the office that`s to follow.

thanos gauntletIt`s the kind of buzz around a movie that studios dream of — movie that has to be seen on its opening weekend in fear of FOMO. And the weekend numbers are proving that "Infinity War" accomplished its mission.

Following a 106 million Friday (with 39 million from Thursday previews), the movie took a minuscule 25% drop on Saturday, when it took in 83 million. That marks the best Saturday ever (topping 69.6 million by "Jurassic World").

The movie`s 250 million weekend passes the all-time best domestic opening weekend held by "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" with 247.9 million in 2015. "Infinity War" playing on more screens (4,474) than "Force Awakens (4,134) helped, too.

"Infinity War" is the sixth movie all-time to have a 200 million-plus opening weekend domestically. They are "The Force Awakens," "The Last Jedi," "Jurassic World," "The Avengers," and "Black Panther."

Yes, all of those properties except for "Jurassic World" are owned by Disney.

The super studio has already earned over 1 billion domestically at the 2018 box office.

More on "Infinity War":

SEE ALSO: The "Avengers: Infinity War" ending is devistating — but the comic it`s based on provides a glimmer of hope

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NOW WATCH: Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump tried to cut a secret deal with Planned Parenthood — here`s what happened

CAIRO - 29 April 2018: President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi attended a ceremony held Sunday by the Egyptian Trade Union Federation (ETUF) to celebrate International Workers` Day.

Egyptian Parliament Speaker Adel Abdel Aal, Prime Minister Sherif Ismail, Al Azhar Grand Imam Ahmed el Tayeb and Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria and Patriarch of Saint Mark See attended the ceremony along with other elite and high-profile figures.

President Sisi is expected to deliver a speech to the Egyptian workers, "who deem a cornerstone of Egypt`s productive wheel."

Celebration live stream


Moreover, Sisi will honor ten senior members of the ETUF who have affected the labor sector nationwide.

The ten workers are: former Secretary General of the Press Syndicate Mohamed Qotb, Mohamed el-Sayed, Saeed Rabee, Mahmoud Mohamed, Sayed Arafa, Nabil Farouk, Sanaa Zayed, Mohamed Hafez, Talat Ahmed and Mohamed el-Shazly.

Head of ETUF Gebali al Maraghi has dedicated the ETUF’s shield to Sisi to assert workers’ support for the president.

Capture
Sisi receives the ETUF’s shield- screenshot from a live stream


During the inauguration of the first phase of construction of the Mediterranean city of New Alamein in March, President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi ordered to finish the procedures of the insurance policies for temporary and seasonal workers "daily workers" within 15 days.

On February 8, President Sisi ordered the Egyptian government to protect seasonal workers` rights and to search for alternatives that provide them with health insurance, clarifying that Egypt will pass a law for seasonal labor according to their needs.

AMMAN (Reuters) - Syrian troops on Sunday tightened the noose around a major Palestinian refugee camp held by Islamic State militants in southern Damascus where hundreds of civilians face an uncertain future, state media, witnesses and residents said.
LONDON (Reuters) - The leaders of Britain, France and Germany have agreed the Iran nuclear deal is the best way of stopping Tehran from gaining nuclear weapons, British Prime Minister Theresa May`s office said in a statement on Sunday.

susan kare the point cafe pinterest san francisco30

Susan Kare, the woman behind the Apple Macintosh`s smiling computer icon, has lent her decades-long visual expertise and creative savvy to a new cafe located inside Pinterest`s San Francisco headquarters.

Kare, a UI and graphic designer, has worked for Pinterest since 2015. She also sits on the design team of the newly-opened cafe called "The Point. "

Business Insider caught up with Kare and what went into opening and designing The Point. Take a look inside:

SEE ALSO: LinkedIn moved into a new skyscraper in San Francisco, and the offices are unlike anything else we`ve seen

Welcome to The Point Cafe.



It`s located in the lobby of Pinterest`s headquarters in San Francisco.



The cafe is basically brand new: Its opening day was February 19.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

MacBook Pro

Steve Jobs may have been obsessed with making Macs super-simple to use — but some of the best Mac tips and tricks aren`t always obvious to the everyday user. 

From keyboard shortcuts to hidden tools, Macs are full of features that will help you work more quickly and easily. 

So whether you`re a Mac newbie or you`re just coming back from a long Windows vacation, here are 24 handy, not-totally-obvious tricks to help you get the most out of your Mac.

Jeff Dunn contributed to an earlier version of this post.

SEE ALSO: How to use Google Duo, the video calling app that`s better than Apple`s FaceTime and works on any phone

1. The simplest and most common way to speed up your Mac usage is to take advantage of Spotlight.

Get there by hitting Command + Space, and you can quickly find files, open apps, search the web, and make system-wide searches.



2. You can also use Spotlight as a calculator, or have it make currency conversions.



3. If you ever lose your mouse in a sea of windows onscreen, just shake it — the cursor will automatically enlarge.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

youtube red

  • Reports indicate YouTube will make another attempt at creating a paid music service to compete with Spotify and Apple Music.
  • Previous YouTube subscription services were uninspired and never made much impact.
  • Analysts say that`s because there`s no motivation for Google to "put its shoulder" into a paid service when there`s so much money in ads.
  • Some music industry big shots say YouTube is doing more to improve the relationship with the music industry.

YouTube plans to launch yet another "Spotify-killer" music streaming service at its annual Google I/O developer conference, according to reports. If history is any guide, we shouldn`t expect much in the way of innovation from the new paid service, or more importantly, anything too disruptive.

Back in December, Bloomberg reported that YouTube and parent company, Alphabet Inc., planned to launch the site in March. A more recent report from Droid Life says that a new service, perhaps called "YouTube Remix," will debut around May 8, when Google`s developer conference gets under way. A YouTube spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment.

Regardless of when the new service arrives, we`ve seen this scenario play out before. Following tense licensing negotiations with the music industry, YouTube and parent company Google typically make a series of concessions. These usually include YouTube agreeing to launch a new service supposedly designed to persuade users to pay for songs.

Then, the service promptly falls behind the sector`s leaders, Spotify and Apple, languishing there until the next round of negotiations. Meanwhile, YouTube, the world`s most popular source of music, continues to rumble on, banking big ad dollars. 

Google Play Music came along first, in 2011. Then YouTube Music Key emerged in 2014, which was turned into YouTube Red. That service is still around and offers an ad-free experience, for music as well as any other kind of YouTube video. Not one of these services has done much to challenge Spotify as the leader in the space, multiple music industry sources say.

One reason the music sector is so keen on transforming YouTube into a paid music service is that after a long dry spell Spotify, Apple and other subscription sites are leading a modest revival.

The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry said global music revenues rose by 8% in 2017. That`s the third year of positive growth after a staggering 15-year run of declines. Still, to expect YouTube to "put its shoulder" into creating a legitimately competitive paid music service is senseless, said Mark Mulligan, director of MIDiA Research and a longtime digital-music analyst.    

"[The record labels] say `Look, you got to be in the subscription business,` even though the subscription business is a complete contradiction to YouTube`s core business," Mulligan said. "YouTube makes money by selling advertising and advertisers want to reach the best consumers. So, if you go and lock the best consumers behind a [paywall] you`re diminishing your core product and the core product is a high margin product."

Mulligan said that whatever music service may come out of I/O, he thinks it`s "going to be a continuation of the same thing."

The upcoming service certainly doesn`t sound very different, judging from Bloomberg`s story. Quoting unnamed sources, the news agency reported that it would offer "Spotify-like on-demand streaming and would incorporate elements from YouTube, such as video clips."

At stake for the big music labels is more than the money that a YouTube paid service might generate. If YouTube doesn`t wall off some of its free music content, then users have no motivation to ever pay either YouTube or Spotify. The labels have long accused YouTube`s ad-supported, free-to-listen business of stymieing growth to paid music services, which are more lucrative for them.

For years, the labels have tried to force YouTube to pay more to license music. They argue that the site pays too little, relative to the size of its audience. Typically, the big music companies find themselves in a weak negotiating position because of copyright law.

YouTube is protected from liability for infringement committed by users. This means that if the labels don`t license the music to YouTube, the site`s users will just post videos themselves to the site. Then, the labels must go through an arduous, and costly process to remove the clips. 

The big record companies have long claimed that YouTube exploits this during licensing talks. They say YouTube`s leaders adopt a take it or leave it approach. If the labels don`t accept YouTube`s offer, the site`s managers tell them they can remove their videos and then try policing the site for pirated songs, according to the labels. Executives from the record companies say they have learned that licensing YouTube -- even at below-market rates --makes more sense.

But the record companies may have a little more leverage now. The European Union is trying to determine whether negotiations over licensing fees between artists and YouTube-esque sites are too one-sided in favor of the sites. Under a proposed plan that is due to be voted on later this year, YouTube could eventually be forced to fork over more money.

Any decision in Europe would only affect YouTube there, but it would create an unfavorable precedent. Judging from the far less combative language coming from music industry leaders, YouTube is coming around, at least a little.

"I feel that YouTube is starting to make more of an effort with the music industry," said David Israelite, President and CEO of the National Music Publishers’ Association, who has been one of YouTube`s chief critics. "But they still have a long way to go with the actual royalties they pay. What’s most important is fair compensation."

But Mulligan, the analyst, says that by forcing YouTube to be something akin to a retailer is a missed opportunity.

"Sooner or later, the music industry must realize YouTube plays a massively important role," he said. "And its role is the future of radio, not the future of Tower Records."

 

SEE ALSO: Spotify said it now has 70 million subscribers

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Why Apple makes it so hard to get a new iPhone battery

Nader Al-Naji

  • Basis CEO Nader Al-Naji just got 133 million to fund his stable cryptocurrency startup Basis, from top tier investors like GV (formerly Google Ventures), Bain Capital Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Andreessen Horowitz, and Sky9 Capital.
  • Al-Naji`s passion for cryptocurrencies began with a bitcoin mining rig he built in his Princeton dorm. 
  • Al-Naji quit his job at Google in order to work on his cryptocurrency, called Basis, which has a stable value determined algorithmically. In theory, that will make it more useful as a currency, and not just a vehicle for speculation.

Today, Nader Al-Naji is the CEO of Basis — a hot cryptocurrency startup, with grand ambitions to replace regular money, and which recently took in a 133 million investment round from firms including GV (formerly Google Ventures and Andreessen Horowitz.

The origins of Basis, however, go back to Al-Naji`s days studying studying computer science at Princeton, when he learned that the university provided students with free electricity. At a friend`s suggestion, Al-Naji, who had recently learned about bitcoin, decided to put his dorm room power toward a profitable pursuit. 

"If you built a mining rig for 1000 in 2013, you could make your money back in about a month," Al-Naji told Business Insider. 

Al-Naji went to work building a powerful computer with two graphics cards and then, he said, "I just started mining away." Over the course of the first 6 months, Al-Naji said he mined a total of 22 bitcoins. 

bitcoin mining

At Princeton, Al-Naji`s interest in bitcoin led him to take courses in monetary history, where he spent office hours arguing with his professor about monetary policy, and the potential for decentralized currencies.

The basis of Basis

After graduation, Al-Naji`s obsessive study of cryptocurrencies grew only deeper.

Later, while working as a software engineer at Google, Al-Naji revisited an idea he`d stumbled upon with two friends while at Princeton: What if they could create a digital currency that, unlike bitcoin, didn`t wildly fluctuate in value?

The volatility of bitcoin has made it more useful as a vehicle for speculation than as a currency, say critics — when the value can change drastically from hour to hour, it introduces undesirable risk for sellers and buyers alike. 

Along with his friends, Lawrence Diao and Josh Chen, Al-Naji began working on a digital currency that used the blockchain as a form of monetary regulation. 

In 2017, Al-Naji posted an early whitepaper for the currency, which is now called Basis, to his Facebook.

The whitepaper described a "stable cryptocurrency" that will maintain a relatively fixed value, so that it can be used to make purchases. Unlike the stable token Tether, which has a steady value that`s tied to the US dollar, the value of Basis is controlled algorithmically, on the blockchain.

"It`s built on a digital constitution that`s very difficult to modify," said Al-Naji. "It`s easier to trust the blockchain [as means of monetary regulation] than the government."

Al-Naji`s whitepaper received immediate enthusiasm from friends within the cryptocurrency community.

"A lot of people told me, `This is really interesting, you should really do this,`" he said.

The overwhelming enthusiasm for the project inspired Al-Naji to pursue it more seriously, and, a short while later, he posted to Facebook again, this time saying that he was going to quit Google in order to work on Basis full time.

The future of Basis

At first, Al-Naji and his friends decided that they would use their own money to fund the business, but when investors like GV (formerly Google Ventures), Bain Capital Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and Andreessen Horowitz began expressing interest, they reconsidered. And the 133 million investment came to be.

"When you`re trying to build a cryptocurrency, you need mind share," said Al-Naji. "One way to get that is by having influential people  buy into the project."

Al-Naji said the money will be used to develop several potential use-cases for the technology, but declined to comment any further. At the time of the investment, Basis highlighted how the technology could be especially useful for those in the developing world, where there`s little existing financial infrastructure to speak of.

As for those bitcoins Al-Naji mined back in 2013?

"I`m still HODLing," he said, referring to the cryptocurrency acronym that stands for "hold on for dear life." (At the time of publication, 22 bitcoins is valued at around 200,000.)

SEE ALSO: 3 Princeton grads just got 133 million from Silicon Valley`s hottest investors for a cryptocurrency that could actually replace money

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: We talked to Charles Schwab`s investment strategist about what 2018 holds for equities, the Fed, and bitcoin

YANGON (Reuters) - A police officer who testified that police framed two Reuters reporters has been sentenced to an undisclosed prison term for violating Myanmar`s Police Disciplinary Act, a police spokesman told Reuters on Sunday, without elaborating.
ROME (Reuters) - Deep-rooted hostility built up over years must be overcome if the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement and the center-left Democratic Party (PD) are to strike a deal to form a government and end Italy`s post-election stalemate.
TOKYO - 29 April 2018: North Korean leader Kim Jong Un expressed readiness to have dialogue with Japan during his summit with South Korean President Moon Jae In, the presidential office was quoted by Kyodo as saying on Sunday.

After Moon told Kim during their Friday meeting that Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is ready to talk with North Korea, Kim responded by saying the North is also ready to do so, the South`s presidential office said.

With North Korea`s recent turn to diplomacy, Tokyo is expected to try to arrange talks with Pyongyang in a bid to resolve the long-standing issue of abductions of Japanese by North Korean agents in the 1970s and 1980s.
CAIRO – 29 April 2018: There is no religious text that forbids faith in political or religious diversity said Egyptian Minister of Religious Endowments, Mokhtar Gomaa, during a seminar he gave Saturday at Al Wafd Party’s headquarters.

Newly elected chairman of Al Wafd Party, Bahaa el-Din Abu Shoka, said in accordance with Gomaa that Islam has established the main principals of democracy since its dawn. He added that all of the state’s institutions, such as Al Azhar, the state-run media and the Ministry of Religious Endowments, should cooperate amid the ongoing battle against terrorism.

Gomaa said that an individual has the freedom to discuss and doubt any religious text as long as it is not a verse from the Quran or words of the Prophet Mohammed. The Minister of Religious Endowments added that Islam is a religion which obliges its followers to use their minds and adhere to what they decide.

Gomaa revealed that the ministry is implementing a strategy to renew religious discourse. The ministry’s preachers are learning foreign languages including French, English, German and Spanish, in order to have better access to various knowledge sources.

In accordance with the current strategy, the ministry has published a book titled “Protection of Churches in Islam”, continued Gomaa.

Egyptian churches have been a target of deadly terrorist attacks since the ousting of former President Mohammed Morsi. Terrorist elements in Egypt have been insistently blaming the Christian minority for Morsi’s overthrow.

In one the deadliest attacks on churches in Egypt, twin suicide bombings took place on Palm Sunday in April 2017, targeting both the St. George`s Church in the northern Egyptian city of Tanta on the Nile Delta, and the Saint Mark`s Coptic Orthodox Cathedral, the principal church in Alexandria.

The attacks left 45 dead and 126 injured. Another attack took place in December 2017, when a gunman stormed a Coptic Orthodox church, east of Cairo, killing 11, including victims from the security personnel. ISIS claimed responsibility for both attacks.

Bonobos tech

  • Bonobos recently launched a new line of sophisticated garments made with a proprietary high-tech fabric.
  • "Menswear moves quickly these days, faster than ever before, and technically capable clothing is one of the places it’s headed," Dwight Fenton, head of design at Bonobos, told Business Insider. 

Bonobos is getting technical.

The menswear-focused clothing company, now a subsidiary of Walmart, has released a new line of clothes made with highly technical fabrics. The cotton, polyamide and elastane blend fabric is stretchy and moisture resistant. The company says it can resist stains from spills and wicks away moisture all while looking like a normal pair of pants.

Bonobos has increased its line, which started with pants, by 400% with its latest release. It now includes jackets, blazers, and button-down shirts.

Bonobos tech chinosIn a word, the inspiration for the new collection was "evolution," Dwight Fenton, head of design at Bonobos, said. 

"Menswear moves quickly these days, faster than ever before, and technically capable clothing is one of the places it’s headed," Fenton told Business Insider."I’m not talking about shirts that can also control your phone or open your garage door, rather clothes that look and feel like what you’re used to, but that can resist stains or odor, provide water repellent, wick moisture, etc."

Fenton said the Tech Chino was so successful, it inspired the company to create an entire line. He says the collection is made for "anybody who demands clothing that suits their active lives without sacrificing performance or style."

Bonobos` tackling of the tech-inspired clothing is different from other companies, Fenton said, as the competition tends to enter the space with more obvious design touches.

"A lot of what we saw in the market went out of its way to make sure the world knew you were wearing “technical” sportswear, lots of extra zippers, seams, bells and whistles," Fenton said. "We wanted the opposite effect, functionality without making `the future` a lifestyle choice."

In some ways, the new collection mirrors technological improvements in other areas of customer`s lives.

"This isn’t a fad," Fenton said. "If you have an iPhone 8, you’re not going to want the 6 again."

Customers demand more from their clothing, he said, pointing to the rise of athleisure and streetwear which has blurred the lines between formality in clothing. That`s allowed people to take more risks and welcome technology into their clothing, especially as they start to expect additional functionality.

Of course, increased technology comes with a cost. Bonobos tech-infused garments are more expensive than its regular lines. As an example, Bonobos` tech chinos run 168 a pair, while the normal cotton chinos are only 98.

"It’s just a symptom of a lot of this being new technology and not at scale yet, but as more and more of this infiltrates the market, costs will come down, and in turn, retail prices," Fenton said.

Bonobos Tech Shirt

SEE ALSO: Adidas just opened a futuristic new factory — and it will dramatically change how shoes are sold

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NOW WATCH: The story behind Warren Buffett`s million dollar charity lunches at Smith & Wollensky

aerion as2

  • Since 2003, supersonic flight has been absent from the aviation industry.
  • Aviation companies are hoping to introduce a new generation of supersonic jets over the next decade.
  • They`re touting new designs and materials they believe will improve performance.


Since the Concorde was retired in 2003, supersonic flight has been absent from the aviation industry. Fifteen years later, three startups and a major defense contractor are plotting its return.

The Concorde made its first commercial flight in 1973, and for nearly 30 years, it allowed customers to cut overseas trips in half. A flight from New York to London would take about three hours and thirty minutes on the Concorde, compared to about seven hours on a standard, subsonic flight. 

But the supersonic jet was expensive to operate, and the combination of a deadly accident in 2000 and an economic downturn after 9/11 led to its retirement in 2003.

Boom Supersonic wants to make flights affordable

boom supersonic jet

The companies working on the Concorde`s successors believe improved designs and materials will result in superior performance. But their aircraft will still be expensive to operate and, given current regulations, unable to fly over land in the US and many other countries due to the loud sonic boom they produce.

Due to those constraints, the next generation of supersonic planes will focus primarily on business travelers and the kinds of wealthy clients who fly on private jets instead of commercial aircraft.

But one startup, Boom Supersonic, thinks its customers will be able to buy tickets on its 55-seat, XB-1 aircraft for a price similar to today`s business class fares. The company says it will be able to fly at Mach 2.2 (Mach 1 is the speed of sound), which would make it the fastest commercial aircraft in history. 

The XB-1 will be made from carbon composites and use design features the company says will improve its aerodynamic qualities. Boom has received over 75 pre-orders for the aircraft, which it plans to deliver in 2023, from customers including Japan Airlines and the Virgin Group. On Tuesday, Ctrip, China`s leading online travel agency, announced its investment in the company.

Spike Aerospace believes it has conquered the sonic boom

Spike S 512 Beach_2 2048 logo

Boom`s competitors will focus on business executives who can afford to pay a premium for reduced travel times. Like Boom, they`re touting their designs and materials.

Spike Aerospace CEO Vik Kachoria said the company`s 18-seat, S-512 jet will reduce its sonic boom to a level that could be acceptable for flights over land due the jet`s "cranked delta wing" shape, which resembles the Concorde with a lower portion of its wings removed. The company says the jet will be able to fly at Mach 1.6 and produce a perceived loudness level of less than 75 PLdB, lower than the Concorde`s 105 PLdB. NASA has said 75 PLdB is the level at which supersonic aircraft could fly over land without creating a disruptive amount of noise.

"Engineering tools that weren`t available when the Concorde was designed now enable us to really look at the aircraft and optimize it in a number of ways that make it more fuel efficient, make it quieter when it`s flying—reduce that sonic boom—and provide a better experience for the passengers," Kachoria said in an interview with Business Insider.

The aircraft`s main cabin replaces windows with wraparound screens that allow passengers to watch movies, display PowerPoint presentations, or watch footage captured by cameras on the jet`s exterior. Spike plans to deliver the aircraft in 2023. 

Aerion Supersonic hopes to be first to market

aerion as2

Spike will compete most directly with Aerion Supersonic, which is aiming to deliver its 12-seat AS2 jet, with a maximum speed of 1.4 Mach, in 2025. The company has received an order of 20 aircraft from the fractional-ownership company Flexjet, and executive chairman and CEO Brian Barents said the aircraft will be the first to hit the market.

"We are on a clear path to bring this airplane to the market and be first to market," he said in an interview with Business Insider.

Barents emphasized the importance of using carbon fiber to build the AS2, and said the sturdy and lightweight material is one of the most significant developments in supersonic technology since the Concorde went out of commission. He said carbon fiber allows the jet to achieve supersonic natural laminar flow, a proprietary technology the company says can reduce drag on the wings by as much as 20% compared to the Concorde.

"Those design tools are not available to anyone else in the industry," Barents said.

In December, Aerion announced a potential partnership with Lockheed Martin that could result in a collaboration on the AS2. At the time of the announcement, Lockheed said it would spend a year deciding whether it wanted to join the project.

Lockheed-Martin is working with NASA

nasa lockheed martin x plane

David C. Richardson, the director of air vehicle technologies at Lockheed`s Skunkworks, said other companies have approached it about potential collaborations on commercial supersonic aircraft over the past 15 years, but Lockheed turned down those proposals for various reasons, including insufficient funding, underdeveloped markets, and a reliance on regulatory changes.

Richardson said Aerion`s proposal stood out because of the engineering behind the AS2 and the way Aerion described its commercial potential.

"It was the rigor of their technical work on the AS2 and their marketing and business story that led us to want to learn more and discover for ourselves what the potential could be of working together," he told Business Insider.

Lockheed may also have the best chance of influencing the regulations that forbid supersonic flight over land. Earlier this month, NASA announced that Lockheed had won a 247.5 contract to build an experimental aircraft designed to fly at supersonic speeds without producing a disruptive sonic boom. Lockheed will deliver the aircraft to NASA in late 2021, at which point the agency will test it over US cities to evaluate the amount of noise it emits.

Timelines for delivering aircraft may be optimistic

Concorde Air France

It`s easy to become excited listening to the next generation of supersonic aircraft builders describe their products` capabilities, but aviation analyst Henry Harteveldt said some of their claims should be taken with a grain of salt. 

Harteveldt, like Kachoria and Barents, doesn`t think supersonic flight will be allowed over land in the next decade. In the near term, he said the aircraft companies like Aerion, Boom, and Spike are promoting can`t be built with today`s engine technology.

"Right now, we still have not made enough progress with the aircraft engines," he told Business Insider. "These are virtual aircraft that exist only in very slick video presentations and PowerPoint presentations and CAD designs. These are nothing more than RV campers with wings right now that will go nowhere without the engines."

While he believes the timelines set forth by Aerion, Boom, and Spike are optimistic (he expects supersonic flights to become available between 2027 and 2030), Harteveldt thinks that may be a good thing. Setting out ambitious, public objectives, could motivate them and ultimately improve their products.

"It`s always good to have goals, right? If you don`t have goals, you don`t push yourself," he said.

SEE ALSO: Aviation experts explain why it still takes 5 hours to fly across the country

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NOW WATCH: Facebook`s recent struggles have investors in a panic — and looming regulation could forever change how it does business

MOSCOW - 29 April: President Vladimir Putin has told his South Korean counterpart Moon Jae-in that Russia is ready to facilitate cooperation between North and South Korea, the Kremlin said on Sunday.

In a telephone call with Moon, Putin said Russia was ready to help with trilateral infrastructure and energy projects on the Korean peninsula.

On Friday Moon and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un embraced after pledging to work for the “complete denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula”.
CAIRO - 29 April 2018: A big fire has swept through the under-construction Conference Building at the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) in Giza on Sunday.

No casualties have yet been reported. The reasons behind of the blaze are yet to be clarified. All workers have been evacuated from the building, and an investigation has been launched into the incident.

10 fire engines have been deployed to the scene to contain the situation.

WhatsApp Image 2018-04-29 at 2.29.22 PM
Fire at the Grand Egyptian Museum - EgyptToday/Mervat Rashad

After the opening, the Grand Egyptian Museum, located between modern Cairo and the Giza pyramids, will contain more than 100,000 artefacts covering 3,000 years of Egyptian history.

Described as the largest archaeological museum in the world, it covers 491,000 square meters, and is located two kilometers away from the Giza pyramids.

Photo Credit: The Grand Egyptian Museum

Egypt’s Civil Protection Authority managed to extinguish a fire that erupted on the scaffolding on Sunday at the building site of the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) that is located in the Haram area, according to the state-owned al-Ahram.

No casualties have been reported and the reason behind the fire is yet to be announced. The GEM is currently being constructed and is expected to partially open this year. The museum houses a full collection of King Tutankhamun golden artefacts and it is set to have more than 100,000 artefacts and it is described to be the largest archaeological museum in the world, according to Egypt Today.

More than 20 fire engines were deployed in the scene to contain the fire.

The story is still developing,

 

KUTUPALONG REFUGEE CAMP, Bangladesh (Reuters) - Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh made emotional pleas to the U.N. Security Council on Sunday for help to return safely to their homes in neighboring Myanmar and for justice over the reason they fled - accusations of killings, rapes and arson.
PARIS (Reuters) - France`s CFDT union on Sunday urged striking Air France workers to accept a management pay offer, blaming the airline`s main pilots` union for "taking everyone hostage" and threatening the company`s future.
BENGHAZI - 29 April 2018: A Libyan transport plane crashed on Sunday at an airfield at El Sharara oilfield, killing three people, an oil engineer said.

The two pilots and a flight assistant were killed in the crash, said the engineer who works at the field.

Authorities use aircraft to deliver supplies to the remote oilfield.

The plane crashed and exploded in the desert away from the oilfield’s facilities.

Sharara is seen as crucial to helping Libya’s economic recovery but output has been repeatedly disrupted due to blockades by armed groups, protests and other security problems.
CAIRO – 29 April 2018: President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi will receive Monday the presidents of Cyprus and Greece to launch the “Roots Revival” initiative to honor foreign communities.

Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades will leave for Alexandria on Monday, according to Cuprus Mail, to launch the initiative along with President Sisi and his Greek counterpart Prokopis Pavlopoulos.

The seven-day “Roots Revival” initiative, also known as “Nostos the Return,” comes as part of a cooperation protocol signed by the three countries last December. The protocol aims to bring Cypriots and Greeks; who used to live in Alexandria, back to the city.

A special program for 120 visitors representing the second and third generations of Egyptian Greek communities in different world countries has been prepared, Minister of Immigration and Expatriates` Affairs Nabila Makram added.

The program is set to include visits to the places in which their families used to live, such as Zizinia and El Raml neighborhoods in Alexandria, followed by a visit to the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Alexandria and All Africa, a tour of Giza Pyramids, and finally a visit to Saint Catherine`s Monastery in Sharm El-Sheikh.

The project is an initiative of Makram, who visited Cyprus along with Greek Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Terence Quick for consultations with Cyprus’ Presidential Commissioner for humanitarian affairs Photis Photiou, as part of the tripartite cooperation of the three countries on diaspora issues.

tongue pills vitamins supplements mouth

  • Seed, a new company with some big names behind it, is about to break into the 38-million probiotics industry
  • They aim to rely on real science to create their product, a probiotic designed to support the vibrant ecosystem of bacteria in your gut.
  • Seed`s scientific advisory board includes a microbiologist who chaired the World Health Organization panel that first defined the term "probiotics."
  • Investors include actors Cameron Diaz and Jessica Biel as well as entrepreneur Peter Thiel.


Seed, a new company with some big names behind it, is about to sprout onto the 38-million probiotics scene — with a product that is designed to improve your digestion and health based on scientific research.

As supplements, probiotics are largely unregulated by the US Food and Drug Administration. That means that most of them don`t have any proven scientific results.

Seed aims to be different.

Backed by Cameron Diaz, Jessica Biel, Karlie Kloss, and Peter Thiel`s Founders Fund, Seed is slated to launch this week with a probiotic that is informed by peer-reviewed scientific research. The product`s ingredients were selected based on results of clinical trials.

The company is being steered by a team of scientists who study the microbiome, the delicate ecosystem of bacteria blossoming in our gut. Probiotics are meant to foster that ecosystem.

Ara Katz, one of Seed`s co-founders and CEOs, told Business Insider that the company wants to "improve the standards of probiotics and bridge microbiome science — not the commercialization and the dilution of the term, but actually reclaim the term `probiotics` for science."

Still, Seed`s probiotics are not drugs. As such, they cannot make claims to treat or prevent any condition or disease. But they can claim to improve overall health — which the probiotics industry thus far has largely failed to demonstrate it can do.

Here`s what to know about the new supplements and what they may be able to do for you.

Other probiotics likely never make it to your gut

abs situps workout fitness exercise woman gym sit upsFor years, pricey pills that claim to improve digestion and wellness by fostering the growth of beneficial bacteria in your gut have dominated the supplement scene. Probiotics are a big business, with a market that some analysts have said could rake in 64 billion in ingredient sales over the next four years.

But while the probiotic industry has boomed, the bacteria in our guts have failed to respond in kind.

Most scientific studies suggest the pills do very little to help our stomachs and may not even provide any measurable benefits to our overall health at all. That`s because very few of the beneficial bacteria in the supplements make it to our guts or stick around long enough to have an effect, Ian Orme, a professor of microbiology at Colorado State University, told Business Insider.

But a new kind of supplement could change that.

Synbiotics are the future of the probiotics industry

prescription-pills-medicine-in-handSeed`s supplement isn`t just a probiotic. It`s a synbiotic, meaning that in addition to beneficial bacteria, it includes another ingredient called a prebiotic.

Prebiotics are designed to keep helpful microbes alive. The combination of the two is synergistic, meaning each ingredient is designed to enhance the other`s effect — hence the term syn-biotic.

Studies suggest that synbiotics accomplish their goal using a one-two punch: while the probiotic settles in and pushes out the "bad" bacteria, the prebiotic — essentially a sugar — acts as its food supply, ensuring the supplement sticks around and does its job.

"There’s kind of a notion that it’s two products in one," Katz told Business Insider of Seed`s supplement.

In the first large-scale clinical trial of synbiotics last year, researchers working in rural India found that newborns who were given a synbiotic were at a substantially lower risk of developing sepsis, a potentially fatal condition characterized by severe infection.

Some small studies have suggested that synbiotics could provide benefits related to a range of other conditions influenced by the gut microbiome as well, including obesity, diabetes, and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. But the FDA has yet to approve any drugs made using those ingredients.

Still, Gregor Reid, Seed`s chief scientific officer and a microbiologist at Canada`s Western University, believes the company is onto something.

"I started on this journey over 35 years ago when people laughed at the idea of probiotics," said Reid, who chaired the United Nations and World Health Organization panel that first defined the term.

"It’s been a long journey but I think it’s exciting that all our work on the microbiome has led to this step. This really is the next phase of probiotics," he added.

The science that went into Seed and future directions for the company

Before coming up with an ingredient list, Seed`s team looked at several peer-reviewed studies on strains of bacteria and kinds of prebiotics (the "food" for that bacteria).

The final product — capsules that are designed to be taken three times a day — reflects that work, Katz told Business Insider.

The company`s prebiotics are sourced from Scandinavian pine bark, Indian pomegranate skin, and a special type of mushroom. Its bacterial strains are the ones studies suggested were the most closely linked with measurable health outcomes.

One of those studies, published last year in the journal PLOS One, suggested that taking one of the strains of bacteria in Seed`s product was linked with reductions in LDL or "bad" cholesterol and increases in HDL or "good" cholesterol.

That promising result could mean that someone taking Seed`s supplement might see moderate cholesterol benefits, but that effect is still untested for Seed`s final product.

Seed aims to finish its own clinical trials on the product this month, Katz said.

"We’re really aiming to raise the bar of how the scientific process is done," he said.

SEE ALSO: Why a pill with barely any health benefits could be the `most important` new supplement in 20 years

DON`T MISS: The 37 billion supplement industry is barely regulated — and it`s allowing dangerous products to slip through the cracks

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NOW WATCH: The surprising reason we boil lobsters alive

susan kare the point cafe pinterest san francisco30

Susan Kare, the woman behind the Apple Macintosh`s smiling computer icon, has lent her decades-long visual expertise and creative savvy to a new cafe located inside Pinterest`s San Francisco headquarters.

Kare, a UI and graphic designer, has worked for Pinterest since 2015. She also sits on the design team of the newly-opened cafe called "The Point. "

Business Insider caught up with Kare and what went into opening and designing The Point. Take a look inside:

Welcome to The Point Cafe.



It`s located in the lobby of Pinterest`s headquarters in San Francisco.



The cafe is basically brand new: Its opening day was February 19.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider
JOBAR, SYRIA (Reuters) - Muhammad al-Masri spent the Syrian war in a house the 75-year-old described as being on the frontline with death.

flight travel

  • Software-maker Qualtrics is giving each employee 1,500 per year to spend on experiences that they wouldn`t otherwise do or be able to afford.
  • So far, some employees have swam with sharks, skiied the Austrian Alps, trekked the Great Wall of China, and completed acts of charity abroad.
  • Millennials, who make up the majority of Qualtric`s workforce, prefer new perks and benefits over a pay raise, surveys have shown.


Millennials have a reputation as the "job-hopping" generation. In 2016, a Gallup poll revealed that 21% of millennials said they changed jobs within the past year (more than three times the number of non-millennials who reported the same), and 60% are open to new opportunities.

As a result, companies are hatching creative solutions to keep their millennial-aged workers on the company`s payroll longer, from providing paid time off for exploring nature to on-demand career coaching.

Qualtrics, a company whose software allow enterprises and researchers to gather data that help improve their customer, employee, and brand experiences, may take the cake in providing over-the-top company perks for its roughly 1,700 employees based in Provo, Utah; Seattle, Washington; and abroad.

In January, Qualtrics began giving each employee 1,500 to spend on an experience "they wouldn`t normally be able to have." So far, some employees have swam with sharks in the Galapagos, skiied the Austrian Alps, trekked the Great Wall of China, and delivered books to children in the Philippines.

To qualify, workers must be full-time employees who`ve been with the company for at least a year. There`s no travel itinerary or application required; employees are free to spend the money as they wish.

"We don`t tell you what to do. We just want to say we helped you cross something off your bucket list," said Mike Maughan, Qualtric`s head of brand growth and customer insight.

For millennials, it`s all about the perks

Americans, for better or worse, are spending more and more of their waking lives at work. Millennials in general work more hours, forfeit more vacation days, and retire much later than previous generations. They also make less money than their parents did at the same age.

These conditions can result in burnout, a lack of engagement at work, or quitting, which may be why some companies, including Facebook, Google, and Netflix, pony up for sweet perks.

travelers millennials happy

According to career site Glassdoor, more than half (57%) of all workers said perks and benefits are among the top things they consider when deciding whether to accept a job. Nearly 90% of younger employees ages 18 to 34 said they would prefer new or additional benefits over a pay raise.

"Benefits and perks matter because they`re an added piece of the total compensation puzzle," Scott Dobroski, Glassdoor`s career trends analyst, told Business Insider`s Rachel Gillett.

Founded in 2002, Qualtric`s entire business is centered on helping companies satisfy their customers. Major airlines use Qualtric`s software to gather customer flight feedback and create experiences that surprise and delight fliers, while retailers use Qualtrics to help them launch targeted ad campaigns, conduct pricing studies, and understand how customers are using their mobile sites.

"We work on experience management all day long," Maughan said, adding that the new "experience bonus" shows employees that "this company walks the walk."

In addition to the experience bonus, Qualtrics offers its employees fully paid healthcare for their families, 401K matching, catered lunches that bring workers across teams together at the communal tables, and "swag bags" delivered twice annually with the latest Qualtrics gear.

Qualtrics isn`t the first to offer a travel stipend as a company perk. Airbnb gives its employees an annual allowance of 2,000 to travel and stay in an Airbnb listing anywhere in the world.

Roughly 80% of Qualtric`s employees are millennials born between 1982 and 2000, according to Maughan. He said the new perk was not motivated to keep millennials around, though it`s an obvious benefit.

"I think we`re very aware of the [workforce] trends relating to millennials," Maughan said. He added: "The primary motivator is that we genuinely care about our employees. We want to make sure we`re providing them with an opportunity that they really want to do and that they wouldn`t do otherwise."

So far, 668 Qualtric employees have taken advantage of the experience bonus in 2018.

SEE ALSO: Companies like Facebook and LinkedIn are paying for employees to get on-the-clock `life coaching`

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NOW WATCH: A leadership expert says too many 20-somethings make the same mistake when they take a new job

GAZA (Reuters) - Political rivals accused Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Sunday of pushing ahead with a rare and disputed national decision-making meeting to tighten his grip on power and sideline them.
RIYADH (Reuters) - New U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo underscored the need for unity in the Gulf during a brief visit to the Saudi capital on Sunday as Washington aims to muster support among allies for new sanctions against Iran.

red iphone 00015.JPG

  • There`s a hidden mode that lets you rearrange the apps on your iPhone much quicker.
  • Here`s how you do it. 

It`s easy to rearrange the apps on your iPhone: Simply hold down until they start wiggling, then move them into the screens and folders of your choice.

But if you want to rearrange a lot of apps at once, it can take a while — unless you know this new trick that Apple included in the most recent version of iOS software, iOS 11. (We only learned about it this week via Finertech.)

It lets you move multiple apps at once. Here`s how you do it:

  1. Hold down one app until it wiggles.
  2. Move it out of its slot.
  3. Then, with a second finger, tap on any apps you want to add to the stack.
  4. Then, you can move the entire stack to another page or into a folder.
  5. You`re done!

Here`s a gif illustrating how to do it:

 

SEE ALSO: Apple made a controversial change in 2016 — but now all of Silicon Valley is playing catch-up

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Jeff Bezos reveals what it’s like to build an empire and become the richest man in the world — and why he`s willing to spend 1 billion a year to fund the most important mission of his life

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