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Found 80 results

  1. Facebook on Thursday introduced new tools in Pakistan allowing users to protect their profile pictures from being downloaded and shared, a move that may help reduce misuse of images on the popular social networking site. ?Last year we piloted new tools that gave people in India more control over who can download and share their profile pictures. We are now expanding these tools to Pakistan,? Facebook said. Nashwa Aly, Head of Policy, Middle East and Africa, Facebook said: ?Profile pictures are an important part of building community on Facebook because they help people find friends and create meaningful connections. But not everyone feels safe adding a profile picture." "In Pakistan, we?ve heard that people want more control over their profile pictures, and we?ve been working over the past year to understand how we can help. This launch is part of our ongoing commitment to keeping people safe online.? Last year, the social networking site had launched the feature in India. Upon turning on the feature, Facebook?s download and share features will be disabled for your profile picture. Further, people you?re not friends with on Facebook won?t be able to tag anyone, including themselves, in your profile picture. The social networking site will also prevent Android devices from taking a screenshot of your profile picture on Facebook Further, If you turn the option on, an image of a shield is added to your current profile picture. The shield helps show people that your profile picture should be respected, according to Facebook. To turn on profile picture guard for your current profile picture: 1) From your profile, click your profile picture. 2) Click Options. 3) Click Turn On Profile Picture Guard. 4) Click Save.
  2. Photo: File Former Pakistani actress Noor Bukhari has launched a YouTube channel to share her religious transformation. The former actress made headlines last year after she announced that she was leaving the entertainment industry. Earlier today, Bukhari shared a video on her official YouTube channel where she plans to show how she ?turned towards religion?. In her first video, Noor spoke about how she decided to make her own channel to interact with fans directly after discovering numerous fake accounts of herself. Noor on Instagram: ?#subscibe#to #myoffical#youtubechanel #NoorBukhari#official? 2,040 Likes, 63 Comments - Noor (@realnoorbukhari) on Instagram: ?#subscibe#to #myoffical#youtubechanel #NoorBukhari#official? She also revealed that along with sharing her journey of transformation, she will also give fans beauty and fitness tips. The actor mentioned that from childhood till present day, her life has been a ?roller coaster ride.? Bukhari starred in Mujhe Chand Chahiye opposite Shaan Shahid. She bagged leading roles in several movies over the years such as Billi, Tere Pyar Mein and Ghar Kab Aogay. She also ventured into the drama industry with projects like Uff Yeh Larkiyan and Mere Angnay Mein.
  3. Kanye West is a creative genius and a powerhouse of talents in his own right. From being a rapper, singer, songwriter, fashion designer, an entrepreneur…*phew* to being married to Kim Kardashian, one of the hottest women in the world; Kanye West should possibly consider changing his name to Kanye Best. Jealousy does not even begin to define what people feel for him. His unparalleled love for…himself is definitely something we all need to learn from. Honestly, the world would have been a better place, had we all loved ourselves and those around us, the way Kanye loves Kanye. Even Kim Kardashian stands second in front of all the love that Kanye has for Yeezy or Yeezus, a name that he apparently coined for himself. A quick context: Apparently, he thinks he is close to the level of God and his controversial album 'Yeezus' which sounds similar to Jesus only went on to prove the same. Is there anyone else who feels Rakhi Sawant and her 'Jeejus' too should get an honorary mention here? Having said that, we also need to mention Elon Musk, who is now inching closer to becoming the leader of West's 'Yeezus' disciples. You can also call him the future President of the Kanye West fanclub. Why? Because Kanye West 'obviously' inspires Musk. Reportedly, while speaking at South by South West (SXSW) festival in Austin, Texas; Musk was asked, “Everyone in this room is inspired by you, who are you inspired by?” Musk was prompt to reply, “Well, Kanye West obviously.” Then he went on to add Fred Astaire's name in the list saying “you should see my dance moves.” .@ElonMusk says he's "obviously" inspired by Kanye West #tictocnews pic.twitter.com/MGRCGuyx1Q — TicToc by Bloomberg (@tictoc) March 11, 2018 Was Musk not told that this event has no relation whatsoever with Kanye? Neither did the two have any 'West-ed' interest in each other, except for just sharing the same name 'West'. © Twitter But, it is not the first time that Musk has gone all out to praise Kanye. Reportedly in 2015, Musk left some impressive comments for Kanye in Time's list of 100 most influential people. The whole world is inspired by Musk and Musk is inspired by West, so if I apply whatever little knowledge of Mathematics I have left in me; does that mean the world is inspired by Kanye? Well, after this revelation, who knows Kanye might release an album for Musk, which will be sent to space to give company to Starman, the mannequin driver of Musk's electric sports car Tesla Roadster. This .gif of @elonmusk dancing is now my favorite one on the internet and I will be using it a nauseating amount. pic.twitter.com/9zixte3sOW — Justin Enriquez (@justinenriquez_) March 11, 2018 Anyway, did any of you manage to spot Elon Musk in Kanye's highly infamous music video 'Famous'? Still didn't find him? Well, we neither, because Musk was not in it. We just wanted you to listen to this song because we were in a mood for it! Now, you can go back to whatever boring stuff y'all were doing.
  4. Xiaomi has confirmed the launch of Mi TV 4A series in India, just two weeks after the 55-inch Xiaomi television model was unveiled in India. The new Mi TV 4A models come in 32-inch and 43-inch screen sizes, and both come with 'smart' features powered by the company's Android-based Patchwall UI. The televisions come in two size variants - Mi TV 4A 43-inch and Mi TV 4A 32-inch. They are priced at Rs. 22,999 and Rs. 13,999 respectively. These are probably the most affordable smart TVs you can think of buying in the country. But unlike the Mi TV 4 which comes with 4K resolution support, these two get HD (720p) and Full-HD (1080p) quality for the 32-inch and 43-inch sizes respectively. © Xiaomi The Mi TV 4A comes equipped with PatchWall, similar to the flagship Mi TV 4 launched by Xiaomi a while back. The PatchWall is an AI-enable TV system which classifies content and makes personalised recommendations based on user preferences. PatchWall offers more than 5,00,000 hours of content via several content partners like Voot, Sony Liv, Hungama and others. © Xiaomi The Mi TV 4A runs Amlogic 64-bit quad core chipset coupled with 1GB of RAM and 8GB of internal storage. On the connectivity front, both variants of Mi TV 4A are fitted with three HDMI ports, two USB ports, Ethernet port, WiFi and a headphone jack. The bigger 43-inch variant comes with an additional USB port and an S/PDIF port, allowing more devices to be connected to the TV. Both the televisions will be "adequately stocked" according to Xiaomi's live stream. Both the TVs have the same Eleven-button remote, can recommend shows and do a universal search across 500,000+ hours of content (80% free). They will be available exclusively on Flipkart, Mi.com and Mi Home stores. In addition to its already disruptive price, Mi TV 4A comes with an instant cashback offer of Rs 2,200 with a JioFi connection.
  5. LAHORE: Having served out his one-month sentence for a speech he made as a Senator, Nehal Hashmi was released from Adiala Jail (Central Jail Rawalpindi) on Wednesday. A visibly charged Hashmi said he had been made a victim of revenge for standing by Nawaz Sharif. He added that his life and livelihood were in the hands of the Almighty, not in the hands of the conspirators. Hashmi who was disqualified from holding public office for a period of five years by the Supreme Court of Pakistan for threatening then prime minister Nawaz Sharif's unidentified 'enemies', said he was had been victimized. "My appeal was filed the very next day after my sentencing, but one month has passed and my appeal has not been heard," Hashmi told journalists, adding, "See, if justice has prevailed or victimisation has prevailed." Hashmi asked those gathered around him, "Whom did I say anything against? When did I take the name of the judiciary? When did I take the names of chacha, baba and rehmats?" Hashmi said they could send him to prison, shoot him or kill him but his respect and shame were in the hands of the Almighty, who had made him respectful today. The former senator lashed out at the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) stating it was the most corrupt institution in the country. He added that if the offices of the directors and assistant directors of NAB were raided, half the looted wealth of the country would be found.
  6. According to the social media giant, there are thousands of posts each month in Pakistan seeking blood donors on Facebook, and over 100,000 people in blood donation groups-Photo: AFP Facebook has launched a blood donations feature in Pakistan to make it easier for people to sign up to be blood donors, and to help connect donors with people and organisations in need, a press release said. ?People using Facebook in Pakistan will be able to sign up to be blood donors either on their profiles or by visiting facebook.com/donateblood. All information will remain private and set to Only Me by default, but people can choose to share their donor status more widely. This feature will be available on Android, iOS and desktop,? the press release said. According to the social media giant, there are thousands of posts each month in Pakistan seeking blood donors on Facebook, and over 100,000 people in blood donation groups. ?Pakistan, like many countries, has a shortage of safe blood. In some cases, this shortage means patients and their families are responsible for finding donors to replace the blood they receive from blood banks or hospitals,? the press release stated. The feature will help bring together donors, non-profit organisations, and health industry to be ?useful to people?. Facebook also launched a similar feature in India and Bangladesh.
  7. WASHINGTON: Facebook on Tuesday announced a $3 million pilot project aimed at helping US newspapers boost paid digital subscriptions. The move was the latest by the huge social network to respond to concerns that it and other online platforms have hurt news organisations by dominating internet advertising. The "local news subscriptions accelerator," part of the Facebook Journalism Project, will work with a small group of metro news organisations "to unlock strategies that help publishers build digital customer acquisitions on and off our platform," said a statement from Campbell Brown, Facebook's head of news partnerships. Facebook recently took steps to enable publishers to encourage paid subscriptions directly from the social network, moving away from requirements that news organisations offer free content in links from Facebook. The new initiative builds on that effort by offering guidance to publishers to help their digital initiatives. "We know Facebook is one part of the strategy to engage readers and ultimately drive paid subscriptions," Brown said. Facebook will offer "coaching from digital subscription experts" to help build reader engagement, she added. The effort by Facebook comes amid ongoing woes of legacy news organisations which have had trouble replacing revenues lost from print advertising in the digital space, with many outlets implementing new or revised "paywalls." Facebook said it is working in the project with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, Dallas Morning News, Denver Post, Miami Herald, Minneapolis Star Tribune, Omaha World-Herald, Philadelphia Inquirer, Seattle Times, San Francisco Chronicle, The Tennessean and Newsday. Brown said Facebook would coordinate with the Lenfest Institute for Journalism to share findings through the Local Media Consortium, Local Media Association, and the News Media Alliance.
  8. The Nokia 8 Sirocco, HMD Global's premium offering of 2018 was launched at the company's press event in Barcelona, Spain. HMD is on a launching spree as it has already taken the covers off the Nokia 1, Nokia 8810 4G, Nokia 7 Plus and the Nokia 6 at the event. The Nokia 8 Sirocco is a rehashed version of the Nokia 8 that was launched last year, bearing the name borrowed from the Nokia 8800 Sirocco. It comes with top of the line specifications and a stainless steel body that has been bumped up. The Nokia 8 Sirocco is one of the Android One smartphones that have been launched by HMD Global in partnership with Google. © HMD Global The Nokia 8 Sirocco is an iterative upgrade rather than a brand new flagship, but it looks and feels like a whole other class of premium compared to its predecessor. The smartphone comes preloaded with Android 8.0 Oreo under the Android One programme. It is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor coupled with 6GB of LPDDR4X RAM and 128GB of non-expandable memory. The Nokia 8 Sirocco bears a 5.5-inch Quad-HD+ (1440×2560 pixels) pOLED display that comes with 3D Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection on the top. © CNET On the camera front, there is a dual camera setup. The 12-megapixel primary camera is a wide-angle lens with f/1.75 aperture. The secondary lens is a 13-megapixel telephoto lens with f/2.6 aperture. Both the cameras feature ZEISS optics and include 2x optical zoom. The wide-angle 5-megapixel front-facing camera has an aperture of f/2.0 and includes a display flash. With Pro Camera mode, users can manually control white balance, focus, ISO, shutter speed and exposure compensation. © CNET Unfortunately, HMD has decided to kill the headphone jack on the Nokia 8 Sirocco. You'll need to use a USB-C or Bluetooth headphones, or make use of the USB-C to 3.5mm headset adapter in the box. The device does support wireless charging though. The Nokia 8 Sirocco is priced at 749 euros (approximately INR 60,000). HMD Global announced that the Nokia 8 Sirocco will be available to purchase in early April in a Black colour model. We expect the device to be available soon in India, given the fact that HMD Global has been taking the Indian market very seriously. Source: CNET
  9. A general view of an official Spalding basketball on the floor before the NBA All-Star Saturday Night at Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, February 13, 2016. USA TODAY Sports/Bob Donnan/Files NBA commissioner Adam Silver sent a memo to all 30 teams regarding the launch of an anonymous hotline available to all team and league employees to report possible workplace misconduct and harassment claims. The hotline will be up and running next week, the memo says, and is the first step in Silver?s stated mission to "promote a safe and inclusive workplace environment." In the memo titled "Respect in the Workplace," Silver also asked all teams to accept and adopt new policies regarding workplace conduct by March 6. "Next week, the NBA will launch a confidential hotline available to all league and team employees to report any concerns arising in the workplace, including but not limited to sexual harassment, illegality, or other misconduct," the memo read. "Specific information relating to the hotline and a form of [an] announcement that we will ask teams to send to all employees will be provided to you shortly. "The action comes in the wake of a Sports Illustrated report outlining the systemic breakdown in harassment and conduct policy within the front office of the Dallas Mavericks." Owner Mark Cuban, who vowed to change the atmosphere in Dallas, said he was not fully aware of the predatory environment described in the report. The SI story centred on former president and CEO Terdema Ussery and team writer Earl K. Sneed.
  10. Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi/File photo ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Wednesday launched power consumer friendly net-metering framework, under which power consumers would be able to generate their own energy and sell the surplus to the national grid. Addressing a ceremony here earlier today, Prime Minister Abbasi said the country stands at the threshold of providing cheap, efficient, reliable and sustainable electricity to consumers. Minister for Power Division Sardar Awais Leghari said on the occasion that solar energy-based net metering has become an economical and financially viable option for average energy consumers, even at household and commercial levels. Federal cabinet to meet today over Trump tweet PM Abbasi to chair the emergency federal cabinet meeting to discuss strategy in wake of Trump's latest statement Later today, the Prime Minister will chair a meeting of the federal cabinet to discuss strategy in wake of US President Donald Trump's tweet, in which the US president accused Pakistan of harbouring terrorists and threatened to cut off its aid. The meeting will also discuss the national as well as regional security situation, and the prevailing economic and social affairs of the country.
  11. CME Group Inc, the world?s largest derivatives exchange operator, began trading bitcoin futures on Sunday, with the contract opening at what is currently its session high and dropping over 6 percent within the first half hour. The CME bitcoin front-month futures opened at $20,650 and have so far traded as low as $19,290 and as high as $20,650 in a session that extends into Monday. The new contract was recently at $19,290 on CME, below the $19,500 reference price set by the exchange for the January contract. The reference price, from which price limits are set, is $19,600 for the February contract, $19,700 for March and $19,900 for June, according to CME. The week-old bitcoin futures contract at the Cboe was last trading at $19,280, up 6.5 percent on the day. Bitcoin recently traded down 1.7 percent on the Bitstamp exchange at $18,640. The launch of bitcoin futures is viewed as a major step in the digital currency?s path toward legitimacy that should ease the entry of big institutional investors. ?We saw a nice open on light volume, but pretty uneventful so far. I do think we could certainly pick up in volume as Asia begins to open. This is a brand-new asset class and I think perhaps a lot of investors want to sit back and see how this plays out before dipping their toes in this market,? Spencer Bogart, partner at Blockchain Capital LLC, said shortly after trading began on Sunday. Volume on CME was recently at 287 contracts. On its debut last Sunday, the Cboe traded nearly 4,000 contracts during the full session. Bitcoin was set up in 2008 by an individual or group calling itself Satoshi Nakamoto, and was the first digital currency to successfully use cryptography to keep transactions secure and hidden, making traditional financial regulation difficult if not impossible. Last week, Chicago-based derivatives exchange Cboe Global Markets launched bitcoin futures, which saw the price surge nearly 20 percent in its debut. Some investors believe the CME bitcoin futures could attract more institutional demand because the final settlement price is culled from multiple exchanges. The Cboe futures contract is based on a closing auction price of bitcoin from the Gemini exchange, which is owned and operated by virtual currency entrepreneurs Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss. The general sentiment in the market remains one of caution and that has been reflected in margin requirements for the contracts. In the futures market, margin refers to the initial deposit made into an account in order to enter into a contract. The margin requirement at CME is 35 percent, while at Cboe, it is 40 percent, reflecting bitcoin?s volatility. The margin for an S&P 500 futures contract, by contrast, is just 5 percent, analysts said. One futures trader said the average margin for brokers or intermediaries on bitcoin contracts was roughly twice the exchange margins.
  12. NASA photo shows the SpaceX Falcon 9 first stage as it returned to Landing Zone 1. -AFP MIAMI: For the first time, SpaceX on Friday launched both a rocket and a cargo ship that have flown before, a step forward in the company's goal to lower the cost of spaceflight. After the launch, the California-based company headed by Internet tycoon Elon Musk landed its rocket booster upright on solid ground at Cape Canaveral, Florida. SpaceX has now managed to return 20 of its rocket boosters after launch, whether on land or on a floating ocean platform, as part of its effort to re-use instead of jettison costly rocket components. "That marks the second successful visit to and from space for this particular booster," said a SpaceX commentator, as live images showed the tall portion of the rocket glide down, upright, from the air to the launchpad. The recycled Dragon spacecraft and Falcon 9 rocket blasted off at 10:36 am (1536 GMT). Three minutes later, the booster and second stage of the rocket separated, as SpaceX´s webcast showed the two components making an arc away from each other in the sky. Then, the second stage continued to propel the Dragon toward the International Space Station, while the tall portion of the rocket-powered its engines to guide it back to Landing Zone 1 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. It was the 14th recovery of a booster for SpaceX this year alone. "This is the beginning of rapid and reliability reusability," said SpaceX Dragon mission manager Jessica Jensen, at a press briefing Monday. The launch was initially set for last Friday but was delayed, as SpaceX said it was "taking additional time for the team to conduct full inspections and cleanings due to the detection of particles in the second stage fuel system." The Falcon rocket booster previously propelled a space station resupply mission in June, called CRS-11. The Dragon capsule was flown to the ISS in 2015. Friday also marked the fourth time SpaceX is re-flying a used booster for one if its clients. However, it was the first such effort for NASA, SpaceX´s most important customer. NASA's ISS program manager Kirk Shireman said rocket experts from around the agency had reviewed safety for the mission. "The net result is about equivalent risk," he told reporters Monday. The unmanned spaceship is packed with 4,800 pounds (2,200 kilograms) of food, supplies and experiments -- including one to study thyroid cancer and another to grow barley in space. The mission is SpaceX's 13th of 20 under a $1.6 billion contract with NASA. The Dragon is scheduled to arrive at the ISS on Sunday.
  13. Nvidia created the “TITAN” line of products years ago to represent 'the best' of everything the company brings to the PC platform. If you want the best and can afford it, it's gotta be a Titan GPU. Nvidia dropped a bombshell at the annual NIPS (Neural Information Processing Systems) conference in Long Beach, CA, with the introduction of its new TITAN V PC GPU. The graphics card consists of six graphics processing clusters, featuring 21.1 billion transistors, 12GB of memory, and 640 Tensor Cores, which are capable of performing 110 teraflops. So technically, it can hit 110 Tera flops, and keep in mind that's 9 times higher than the TITAN XP and 18 times higher than the fastest console, the Xbox One X. While you can play PUBG or any other game with this card, it's aimed towards researchers who need this kind of parallel processing power for running their scientific simulations or who scientists who want to build machine learning models. © Nvidia All of that power comes at a price, though. The card, which features 12GB of HBM2 memory, will retail for $2,999 (approx Rs. 1,90,000). For that, though, users will see a 9x increase in raw power compared to the TITAN XP (predecessor) which retailed for $1,299 (approx Rs. 83,000). Also, it comes in gold and black. That's pretty dope! Nvidia's stated goal with the TITAN V is to offer researchers who don't have access to supercomputers or big iron HPC installations the same access to cutting-edge hardware performance that their compatriots enjoy. © Nvidia While clearly not intended to please traditional home gamers (the 1080Ti is more than enough for most), the Titan V's new Volta architecture could pave the way for Nvidia's next-gen GPUs, as the company says Volta is twice as power efficient as the current 10-series Pascal-based cards, while also providing a “dramatic” boost in performance. “Our vision for Volta was to push the outer limits of high-performance computing and AI. We broke new ground with its new processor architecture, instructions, numerical formats, memory architecture and processor links,” said Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang. “With TITAN V, we are putting Volta into the hands of researchers and scientists all over the world. I can't wait to see their breakthrough discoveries.” You can buy a Titan V at the Nvidia store in the United States anytime now.
  14. SABETTA: President Vladimir Putin on Friday launched a $27 billion liquefied natural gas plant in the snow-covered plains of the Arctic as Russia hopes to surpass Qatar to become the world's biggest exporter of the chilled fuel. The Russian president congratulated workers as he oversaw the first gas shipment being loaded onto an icebreaking tanker from an LNG plant amid minus 28 degrees Celsius (minus 18 degrees Fahrenheit) weather in the port of Sabetta on the Yamal Peninsula above the Arctic Circle. "This is a large-scale project for Russia," Putin said. "At the start of the project, people told me not to pursue this. Those who started this project took a risk but achieved a result." Saudi Arabian Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih and other top officials were present for the occasion. For the project, Russia's privately owned gas producer Novatek partnered with France´s Total and China´s CNPC. Qatar is currently the world's biggest LNG exporter. Russia, the world's biggest gas exporter, derives a huge share of income from pipeline deliveries to Europe. With Yamal LNG, Russia intends to strengthen its market presence in Asia and demonstrate its capacity to exploit huge Arctic reserves despite major technological challenges. 'On time and on budget' Dmitry Monakov, the project's first deputy director, said that producing LNG in permafrost was easier than in warmer climes, an apparent dig at countries like Qatar. "Nature itself helps us to more effectively liquify gas with the help of such low temperatures," he told AFP, adding that the plant effectively sat on a gas field so transportation costs were low. Patrick Pouyanne, Total chairman and CEO, praised the project´s "remarkably low upstream costs". "Together we managed to build from scratch a world-class LNG project in extreme conditions to exploit the vast gas resources of the Yamal peninsula," he was quoted as saying in a company statement. The tanker carrying the first LNG cargo is named after Christophe de Margerie, a former Total CEO who died in an accident on a runway of a Moscow airport in 2014. White whiskers have been painted on it in honour of the late CEO, who was known for his white bushy moustache. The site is operated by Yamal LNG company, owned by Novatek (50.1 percent), Total (20 percent), CNPC (20 percent) and Silk Road Fund (9.9 percent). The $27 billion (23 billion euro) project is set to start with a production capacity of 5.5 million tonnes per year and increase it to 16.5 million tonnes by the start of 2019. "Despite challenging operating conditions, Yamal LNG was delivered on time and on budget," said Samuel Lussac, an oil and gas specialist at Wood Mackenzie consultancy. "That is unusual in the LNG industry." "Novatek, once a domestic gas supplier, becomes a global LNG player" with the project, he added. Risks remain The project has had its share of financial and technical hurdles over the years. While the Yamal peninsula has huge hydrocarbon reserves, it is an isolated region above the Arctic Circle, about 2,500 kilometres from Moscow and covered by ice for most of the year, with temperatures dipping as low as minus 50 degrees Celsius. Since its inception in late 2013, an airport and a port have had to be constructed, as well as gas reservoirs and the LNG plant itself. Securing financing for the project was tricky. US sanctions against Novatek made it virtually impossible to borrow from Western banks, and Chinese partners eventually stepped in to resolve the issue. Despite the project's completion, Yamal LNG still faces risks, analysts said. Lussac of Wood Mackenzie said that the coming months will show "whether the plant can operate smoothly in the harsh Arctic environment". Transportation through the Northern Sea Route also remains undeveloped, and "its feasibility as a major LNG delivery route is unclear", he added. Russia hopes the route will become an easier path to coveted Asian markets. The route along the northern coast of Siberia allows ships to cut the journey to Asian ports by 15 days compared with the conventional route through the Suez Canal, according to Total.
  15. Election Commission of Pakistan ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) Monday formally launched an ambitious drive in 79 districts to try to bridge the increasing gap between male and female voters, as female voters are 43.73 per cent of total 97.02 million registered voters. Interestingly, the gap between male and female voters increased from 10.97 million female voters in March 2013 to 12.17 million in October 2017. Experts say that without active involvement of political parties at the grass-root level, desired results may not be achieved. The Free and Fair Election Network (Fafen) points out that the National Data and Registration Authority (Nadra) also needed to enhance its capability to cope with this national challenge. Launching the ?Female NIC and Voter Registration Campaign? here, Chief Election Commissioner Justice Sardar Muhammad Raza said that one biggest challenge was the difference between male and female voters in the electoral rolls and to decrease this gap, the Election Commission had chalked out a four-pronged approach. ?We are trying to increase the number of female staff at the Election Commission. We are trying to increase the number of female polling staff at polling stations for the upcoming general elections. We also encourage women political representation and participation in political arena,? he said. About the campaign, he explained that it would target unregistered women in 79 districts throughout Pakistan and through this campaign, unregistered women would be mobilized and educated to acquire NICs so that they could be added in electoral rolls. He maintained this campaign was a collaborative effort of Nadra, ECP and civil society organisations. ?ECP has always manifested its utmost efforts for all inclusive elections and today, I would like to convey through this event that ECP will take every step to mitigate the existing difference between male and female voters,? he said. The campaign, which will continue till April next year, will be covering 27 districts in Punjab, 16 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 24 in Sindh, 11 in Balochistan and Islamabad as well to target females, motivating them to obtain NICs for registration as voters. Fafen emphasises that media should highlight the gravity of the issue to make state institutions respond to the gravity and sensitivity of the issue in the context of upcoming general election.
  16. Android users' can wave all their data usage problems goodbye with the launch of Datally ? a smart and simple Android app that helps smartphone users understand, control, and save mobile data. Datally works on all smartphones running Android 5.0 (Lollipop) and higher, and is available on the Google Play Store globally. The app claims to help users solve one of the biggest pains for smartphone users around the world ? worries about data usage. Extensive user research revealed that many smartphone users worry about running out of data. This is an especially acute problem for the newest generation to come online, known as the ?Next Billion Users.? Not only are smartphone users constantly thinking about data balances, but they do not understand where their data is going, nor do they feel in control over allocating data to the apps they really care about. Datally empowers users to solve these problems with four key features: Data Saver Apps frequently use data in the background for updating content and information. Datally?s Data Saverfeature lets users control data on an app-by-app basis, so that data only goes to apps they care about. People testing the app saved up to 30% of mobile data, depending on the way they used Datally. Data Saver bubble Once Data Saver is turned on, Datally?s Data Saver bubble will appear when a user goes into an app that is allowed to use data. Whenever that app uses data, the Data Saver bubble will show the current rate of data usage, and users can easily choose to block that app?s data use if things start to get out of control. The Data Saver bubble is like a speedometer for mobile data. Personalized alerts Datally alerts users when apps start consuming a lot of data, and it allows them to see how much data they?ve used on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. Wi-Fi finder There are also times when users want to use more data than they have on their mobile plans, such as when they want to watch HD videos. Public Wi-Fi is an important access point for high-bandwidth connectivity, so Datally?s Find Wi-Fi feature reveals the networks nearby, rated by the Datally community. Once connected, users can rate the Wi-Fi networks themselves based on their own experience.
  17. China launched a nationwide investigation into its kindergartens on Friday after parents at a Beijing preschool said toddlers had apparent needle marks and were given mysterious pills ? sparking outrage days after another daycare scandal. Photo: AFP file BEIJING: China launched a nationwide investigation into its kindergartens on Friday after parents at a Beijing preschool said toddlers had apparent needle marks and were given mysterious pills ? sparking outrage days after another daycare scandal. Security personnel installed a cordon at the gate of the RYB Education New World kindergarten on Friday after dozens of curious onlookers crowded outside the high-end, bilingual Chinese-English nursery, which was still operating. A day earlier, furious parents had gathered in front of the gate to demand answers from RYB, which is run by a company that started trading on the New York stock exchange in September. Its shares plunged by more than 40 percent in after-hours trading. China?s official Xinhua news agency said children were also ?reportedly sexually molested? but gave no further details. Li Jing, mother of a three-year-old girl, told AFP her daughter had not been abused but said other children had explained how they were coerced into taking pills. ?Other kids were saying it?s not to be called taking a pill, but a reward. And the pill is not to be called a pill, but a jelly bean, and is a little secret between the child and the teacher,? Li said. She chose to bring her daughter to school on Friday because she trusted the girl?s teacher, but admitted: ?I still feel a bit uneasy.? The Chaoyang district government said police opened an investigation after parents reported the suspected abuse on Wednesday. Though authorities have so far declined to confirm or provide more details about the allegations, the incident prompted the education steering committee of China?s State Council, its top administrative body, to call for an ?immediate? investigation into kindergartens across the country. ?Lately, many places have had incidents where children have been violated and harmed in kindergartens, which has had an abominable impact and caused major harm to their families,? it said in a circular published on the Ministry of Education?s official website. Two white pills after lunch The magazine Caixin said eight children had apparent needle marks and that the incidents occurred in two classes with kids aged between two and six. Parents also said children were fed unidentified pills. ?I asked my child after I heard what other parents said and my child said that they had taken two white pills after lunch, and slept after eating the pills,? one father told CCTV outside the school on Thursday. The kindergarten is located adjacent to a large military base, and rumours flew online that military officials there were involved in sexually abusing the children. Fun Junfeng, the base?s political commissioner, confirmed in an interview with the PLA Daily that the husband of the school?s director was previously an official there, but said there was so far ?no evidence? that military personnel had been involved in the abuse. ?But this is just the first step of the investigation,? he added. RYB apologised to parents and said it was cooperating with the police investigation. ?We are currently working with the police to provide relevant surveillance materials and equipment. The teachers in question have been suspended,? the company said in a social media statement. Severe mistakes RYB Education directly operates 80 kindergartens and has franchised another 175 in 130 cities across China for children ranging from newborns to six-year-olds, according to its Nasdaq listing. It is the third time in just over a year that one of its schools has faced abuse allegations. RYB already apologised in April and suspended the head of a Beijing kindergarten after admitting that teachers committed ?severe mistakes?. The Beijing News had obtained videos showing teachers throwing a child on a bed and kicking another in the back. The People?s Court Daily reported that two teachers from a RYB kindergarten in northeast Jilin province were sentenced to 34 months in prison for jabbing children in the head, inside their mouths, and on their legs and buttocks with sewing needles in October 2016. Zhang Zhiqiang came to the Beijing nursery on Friday to cancel his two-year-old daughter?s enrollment after reading about the latest scandal, though she was not among the alleged victims. He said the school refunded him the 18,000 yuan ($2,725) annual tuition fee. The ?international? class in which children were allegedly abused was even more expensive, parents told AFP, with tuition of more than 5,000 yuan ($760) a month. The latest allegations came a week after Chinese online travel agency Ctrip suspended two officials after footage emerged of workers abusing toddlers at a company daycare centre in Shanghai. The clips showed young children of Ctrip employees being roughly handled and punished by being force-fed what parents claimed was spicy mustard at the company?s Shanghai headquarters. Police detained three daycare staff for suspected abuse.
  18. NASA on Saturday launched a next-generation satellite into space designed to monitor weather around the world and help improve forecasts. Photo: NASA LOS ANGELES: NASA on Saturday launched a next-generation satellite into space designed to monitor weather around the world and help improve forecasts. The satellite, called the Joint Polar Satellite System-1 (JPSS-1), is a joint venture between the US space agency and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), which provides weather reports and forecasts. The satellite was launched aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket as scheduled at 1:47 am (0947 GMT) from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. It will orbit the Earth 14 times each day from one pole to the other at 512 miles (824 kilometres) above the planet, "providing scientists full global coverage twice a day," NASA said. The satellite "is the first in NOAA?s series of four, next-generation operational environmental satellites representing major advancements in observations used for severe weather prediction and environmental monitoring," it said. JPSS-1 "carries a suite of advanced instruments designed to take global measurements of atmospheric, land and sea conditions, from sea surface temperatures, volcanic ash, hurricane intensity and many more." Four smaller satellites called CubeSats, part of NASA?s educational nano-satellite program, are to be released on the same mission. The CubeSats belong to four US universities and will be set in orbit after the weather satellite has been deployed, NASA said. Two previous launch attempts had been cancelled, once due to high winds and another due to technical problems.
  19. Uber has just launched a light web-based version of Uber - m.uber.com - in India that will help people book their rides from computers or tablets. What this means is, you no longer have the compulsion to book via the app. The web version does exactly the same thing that the App can but isn't resource intensive. The web-based version of Uber has already launched in India, and the feature is targeting riders who do not have high-end smartphones that can support mobile apps, due to limited storage issues. (c) Pexels "As part of our efforts to enable global access to Uber, we're focusing on two key areas for riders -- building solutions for those who don't have access to the Uber app and enabling our existing rider app to work better in emerging markets," Daniel Graf, Vice President and Head of Product at Uber, said in a statement. Keeping the low connectivity network conditions of India in mind, Uber also announced the pilot of three additional features – offline search, call to ride and request a guest. Uber is also testing a new “call-to-ride” functionality, and the first pilot is being run in Pune. The cab-aggregating service has identified popular zones in the city setup pickup points. Riders can simply call on the given number and enter the provided four-digit code to wait for a cab at the pickup point. Users will get information about their ride via SMS. (c) BCCL Offline search is essentially for the riders using the app in limited network areas. With this feature, Uber is enabling offline search by caching the top points of interest in the city so that riders can enter their destinations in the app without having to wait for the connection, the company said. Finally, Uber riders will be able to request a ride for a guest, a feature that will be introduced in the next few weeks. The rider or guest for whom the ride has been booked will get an SMS with driver, car, ETA information, etc. The ride will be charged to the person who has requested it. (c) Pexels "We have a strong team and product champions in Bengaluru and at the newly inaugurated Hyderabad engineering facility working on innovations around the world. As a part of our efforts, we are focusing on two key areas for the market - build solutions for those who don't have access to the Uber app and enable our existing app to work better in emerging markets," said Graf. Uber is now working hard on localizing their business strategy in India amid stiff competition from local player Ola. Earlier in the year, Ola launched it's lighter web version which eliminated the need for a smartphone in the booking process. Uber says they have an engineering team of 150 in India who are constantly working on improving the localized user experience in India.
  20. Seven of US President Donald Trump's eight border wall prototypes are shown near completion along the US-Mexico border near San Diego, California, US, October 23, 2017. REUTERS/Mike Blake/Files TEPIC: An irreverent card game company is playing its hand to help stop construction of a controversial wall along the US-Mexico border. Cards Against Humanity ? maker of a popular party game ? said Wednesday it has purchased land along the border that it hopes to use to challenge US government building efforts. US President Donald Trump pledged frequently during his campaign to build the wall to fight illegal immigration and crime in the United States. It is estimated the series of fences and walls would cost as much as $21.6 billion. Trump has claimed he will make Mexico pay for it. Trump is afraid of Mexicans, the Chicago-based game company said on a website promoting its stunt. ?He is so afraid that he wants to build a $20 billion wall that everyone knows will accomplish nothing,? it said. The company said it hired a law firm that specializes in eminent domain, the system that allows the government to take private property, ?to make it as time-consuming and expensive as possible for the wall to get built.? Consumers can join in by paying $15 to the company, which did not specify the size or location of its plot. The company?s risque, often politically incorrect game is ranked the best-selling game on Amazon.com. ?via Thomson Reuters Foundation
  21. Reporters gather in the courtyard of a media outlet's office during a protest in Istanbul, Turkey, March 4, 2016. REUTERS/Kursat Bayhan/Zaman Daily/Files The United States said on Monday it would fund rural media outlets in Hungary to help train and equip journalists in defence of an independent media it sees subject to growing pressure and intimidation. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has increased media control by legal changes, regulatory steps, and takeovers of outlets by business sector associates. The moves have alarmed Western partners with the approach of elections, due in April 2018, which he is widely expected to win comfortably. The trend was especially strong in rural Hungary, where government-controlled public media and a handful of outlets friendly to the ruling Fidesz party are the only news sources most people get. That is where the $700,000 US program focuses. ?The Department of State... seeks a partner for the United States Government who will help educate journalists and aspiring journalists on how to practise their trade,? a State Department official said in a statement emailed to Reuters. ?The United States has publicly and privately expressed our concerns about the status of the free press in Hungary on multiple occasions,? the official said. ?Hungary has committed to upholding these standards.? The government had no immediate comment. The program offers technical and financial assistance to media outlets, as well as increased local and international exposure, small grants, and other tools. They can use the funds after May 2018. 'Numbers dwindling' Washington denied entry to top officials of his government on corruption charges in 2014, and Orban ruffled feathers with attacks on the US-chartered Central European University, an issue yet to be resolved. The US Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor launched the program after the top US diplomat in Budapest cited an erosion of media freedoms. ?There are still independent and opposition media outlets here that are able to practise journalism with broad editorial freedom,? Chargé d?Affaires David Kostelancik said last month at a journalism conference. ?That is a good thing.? ?However, their numbers are dwindling, and they face challenges in the advertising market that the pro-government outlets do not. They face pressure and intimidation... as a result, fewer and fewer Hungarians are exposed to the robust debate and discussion that is so important ? in fact, fundamental ? to a representative democracy.? Reacting to those comments, Foreign Ministry State Secretary Levente Magyar said the government would ?continue to reject all statements that affect Hungarian internal affairs and are based on misrepresentation in the strongest possible terms?. The Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, an intergovernmental human rights and media freedom watchdog, has said media pluralism has declined in Hungary.
  22. The Orbital ATK Antares rocket, with the Cygnus spacecraft onboard, launches from Pad-0A, on November 12, 2017, at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. Photo: AFP WASHINGTON: An unmanned cargo ship packed with 7,400 pounds (3,350 kilograms) of food and supplies for the astronauts living at the International Space Station blasted off Sunday from Wallops Island, Virginia. Orbital ATK?s barrel-shaped Cygnus cargo ship launched atop an Antares rocket at 7:19 am (1219 GMT), a day after a last-second delay due to an unexpected aircraft in the area. "Five, four, three, two, one and we have ignition," said Orbital ATK?s mission control operator, as the rocket?s engines lit up the chilly, grey morning and cheers erupted from spectators near the launch site. The spacecraft reached orbit about nine minutes later. NASA commentator Rob Navias described the launch as "flawless." The mission is the eighth for Orbital ATK, which has a $1.9 billion contract with NASA to resupply the orbiting outpost. SpaceX also has a $1.6 billion contract with NASA, sending its Dragon cargo ship to regularly re-stock the space lab. Among the experiments on board is a satellite that will test how bacteria grows in microgravity, and determine the minimum amount of antibiotic needed to stop its growth. Knowing how bugs will act during long-duration missions will help the US space agency, which hopes to send people to deep space in the coming decades, with a human mission to Mars sometime in the 2030s. Cygnus is scheduled to arrive at the orbiting outpost on Tuesday. Italian astronaut Paolo Nespoli of the European Space Agency and NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik will use the space station?s robotic arm to grab Cygnus at about 4:50 am (0950 GMT), NASA said. Astronauts will unload its contents, then repack it with several tons of trash so it can be shipped off on December 4. Eventually, it will burn up upon re-entry into Earth?s atmosphere. The current crew of six astronauts on duty at the space station include three Americans, one Italian and two Russians.
  23. PayPal, the largest online payment facilitator in the world is finally making a splash here in India. The company announced that they will now offer a single account for local & international transactions, on Wednesday. The company was founded 18-years-ago in December 1998 by Elon Musk, Peter Thiel, Ken Howery, Luke Nosek, and Max Levchin and at present is headed by President and CEO, Daniel H. Schulman. © MMO-Champion PayPal supports online money transfers and serves as an electronic alternative to traditional methods like checks and money orders. The step comes as no surprise as India moves towards a digital economy led by the Narendra Modi government. The step seems to be natural and inevitable, only dependent on the frame of time and scalability. More and more people are using e-wallets and card payments in the country and are fostering a secure cashless economy. This is what Anupam Pahuja, country manager and managing director, PayPal India had to say at the launch, “India is transitioning away from our biggest competitor – cash – and our digital platform and technology has immense scope to enable this at scale,” © Tech in Asia He further added, “For us, the marathon has just begun.” Now, if we look at the digital payment market in India, the first name that comes to mind is Paytm. China's Alibaba-backed (BABA.N) PayTM, is the country's leading digital payment firm and is currently dominating the Indian market in this segment. © YourStory One major factor behind this strategic decision could be the fact that India's crowded digital payments market is expected to grow ten-fold to $500 billion by 2020. That a big number indeed. Just recently, Google also launched Tez (UPI based), a mobile payments service by Google, targeted at users in India. Thus, one can say that PayPal's entry was inevitable and it was just a matter of time that the big players made their way to our country. From a customer's perspective, one could surmise that they will have more offers and choices in the marketplace and from a competitor's perspective, the ecosystem should definitely foster healthy growth. Here is what Anupam Pahuja, implies when he talks about the technology and security behind the tech giant's services. According to him, PayPal is device agnostic for consumers, which basically means it takes ten lines of code for a merchant to register themselves on to the service. This technology is supposed to be faster and easier to adopt than the UPI (Unified Payment Interface) route. What's even more commendable and beneficial for the customer is that PayPal will pay for the return shipping as well. PayPal will let customers file a dispute with a merchant for up to six months (or 180 days), also providing multi-lingual customer support from its support operations in India. As per PayPal's previous records, an average PayPal customer's query is resolved in less than 30 seconds, with some bigger cases solved in 5 minutes. In the coming days, PayPal plans on introducing EMI facilities for customers and even provide working capital for merchants to kickstart and grow their businesses.
  24. Snap Inc is redesigning its disappearing-message app Snapchat in an attempt to reach a broader audience, going back to the drawing board after being clobbered by Wall Street for another quarter of slowing user growth. The Venice, California-based firm, which had the hottest debut of any tech stock in years in March, reported revenue and user growth for the third quarter well below Wall Street expectations as it struggles to compete with Facebook Inc?s Instagram. The disappointing financials and announcement of the redesign sent shares down as much as 20 percent in after-hours trading. They rebounded partially to $12.57, still well below the initial public offering price of $17 in March. Snap?s user growth in the last three months was about half what investment analysts expected. Daily active users rose to 178 million in the third quarter from 173 million in the second quarter. Analysts had expected 181.8 million, according to research firm FactSet. Chief Executive Evan Spiegel said the company was launching the redesign after hearing for years that Snapchat was difficult to understand or hard to use. ?We are going to make it easier to discover the vast quantity of content on our platform that goes undiscovered or unseen every day,? Spiegel, 27, said in written remarks prepared for a call with investment analysts. He said that there was a ?strong likelihood? the redesign would be disruptive in the short term, but that Snap was willing to take the risk for long-term gain. Such a radical change so soon after an IPO is unusual. But Snap is not the only social media company looking to revive growth by changing its look. Microblogging service Twitter Inc said on Tuesday it would roll out 280-character tweets to users across the world, double the length of its iconic 140-character tweets. Asked on the analyst call what the redesign would look like, Spiegel offered no details but said the company had been studying the evolution of mobile content feeds such as Twitter streams and the Facebook News Feed. ?There?s a really exciting opportunity here for another evolution,? he said. REVENUE MISS Revenue, the bulk of which comes from advertisements, rose to $207.9 million from $128.2 million. Analysts on average were expecting revenue of $236.9 million. Snap?s average revenue per user rose to $1.17 in the latest quarter, from 84 cents a year earlier, but missed analysts? average estimate of $1.30. Snap Chief Strategy Officer Imran Khan said revenue was affected by a shift toward a software-based auction system for selling ads - a method employed by Facebook and Alphabet Inc?s Google - which has driven down the average price. The auction system hit revenue in the short term but ?builds the foundation for long-term scalable revenue,? Khan said in written remarks. The amount of ads in Snapchat compared to non-ad content, known as ?ad load,? remains very low, Spiegel said. Snap recorded a $39.9 million charge in the quarter related to inventory of its hardware product ?Spectacles.? The company said it ?misjudged strong early demand? and ended up buying more of the product than it could sell. Snap?s Spectacles, at $129.99 a pair, are sunglasses with a video camera on one corner. They allow users to take 10-second videos with the press of a button on the frame, which are then saved to users? Snapchat account. INVESTORS SOUR In its third earnings report since the company went public in March with a $3.4 billion valuation, Snap posted a net loss of $443.2 million, or 36 cents per share, compared with a loss of $124.2 million, or 15 cents per share, a year earlier. Wall Street had expected a loss of 32 cents per share, on average, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. Snapchat, popular among millennials for the bunny faces and floral tiaras that people can add to pictures, allows users to chat through a series of disappearing photos and videos. Users can also post images and videos as ?stories? - ephemeral posts that can be viewed in chronological order and that disappear after 24 hours. Investors? view of Snap has soured since its IPO. Before the quarterly release, Snap?s share price was already down 39 percent from its close on March 2, its first day of trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Facebook?s shares were up 32 percent over that time. Facebook?s Instagram said in September that it had 500 million daily active users. As of June, Instagram Stories - a replica of Snapchat?s synonymous feature - had 250 million daily users, up from 200 million in April, according to the company.
  25. Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May leaves Number 10 Downing Street in London, Britain. REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth/Files LONDON: Prime Minister Theresa May released a new code of conduct for Conservative Party representatives on Friday as a sexual harassment scandal dogged the British parliament. Following Michael Fallon's resignation as defence secretary, May outlined new procedures for dealing with allegations, as further claims swirled around Westminster. Her governing Conservatives will adopt a new complaints procedure with a hotline for reporting potential breaches, and officials want the measures replicated in other parties. May's announcement follows the flood of sexual assault and harassment claims against Hollywood movie mogul Harvey Weinstein. Those revelations prompted allegations of inappropriate behaviour in Westminster ? with several allegations of misuse of power surfacing. May is due to meet leaders of other parties on Monday to thrash out a cross-party approach, saying it was not right that "vulnerable or concerned people" could be left to "navigate different grievance procedures." "There needs to be a common, transparent, independent grievance procedure for all those working in parliament who wish to raise concerns which provides clarity and certainty about how their concerns will be dealt with," May said. The new Conservative code applies to the party's elected representatives, from MPs to local councillors and city mayors, and party officers at all levels. Fallon quit as defence secretary on Wednesday, saying his behaviour had fallen short of the standards required. He admitted touching radio presenter Julia Hartley-Brewer's knee 15 years ago ? an incident she said was nothing other than "mildly amusing". According to The Sun newspaper on Friday, Fallon's resignation was actually prompted by complaints against him by Cabinet colleague Andrea Leadsom. But a source close to Fallon told the tabloid he categorically denies telling her at some point between 2010 and 2012 that he knew where she could put her cold hands to warm them up. May's Downing Street office then issued a statement saying Leadsom "did not, and has not, asked the prime minister to consider the position of Sir Michael Fallon when he was defence secretary". May replaced Fallon on Thursday with another loyalist, chief whip Gavin Williamson, who had been in charge of enforcing party discipline. The appointment triggered some dismay in Conservative ranks, with reports saying MPs were angry he had seemingly orchestrated Fallon's departure ? then became a beneficiary. The main opposition Labour Party has also suspended MP Kelvin Hopkins, 76, pending an investigation into claims he sent suggestive texts and acted inappropriately. Hopkins said he "absolutely and categorically" denied the allegations of inappropriate conduct.