October 20

Letters to the Editor for Tuesday, July 9

first_imgDemocrats are doing harm to the countryThe purpose of this is to help make The Gazette great again and to debunk some liberal talking points used by Doug McFadden in his June 29 letter (“Support getting rid of Trump, McConnell”). He attempted to discredit Jane Pauze’s June 22 letter (“Enough effort wasted investigating Trump”) that spoke to the damage the progressive liberal wing of the Democratic party is doing to this great nation.Mr. McFadden’s claim that “Trump tried hard to obstruct justice“ is said honestly as, “tried hard to defend himself. “Gone it seems are Ronald Reagan’s “blue-dog“ and John Kennedy’s “Ask what you can do for your country.” Democrats were  shamefully replaced by the liberal progressives that condone killing live-born babies and open borders that will allow other 9-11 — butchers to prey upon the innocents.Create sanctuary cities such as Saratoga and Albany that harbor illegal Democratic voters, a.k.a., immigrants.Worse is their attempt to discredit, damage and destroy Donald Trump, his family and anyone ever associated with him. This is a blatant attempt to destroy us and our way of life.As Ms. Pauze said, ”He ate your lunch.“ Tough – suck it up and love your country.What’s also sad is that many opinion page authors unwittingly support these hate groups.God did indeed “bless America.“ Don’t screw it up,  Libs.Jack OsterlitzGlenvilleDemocrats in Albany show their humanity In response to Jennifer Richards’ July 2  letter (“Prioritize humans over animals in NY”) in which she criticizes the recent ban on declawing cats passed by the state Legislature, she should read and think about the quote from the great Mahatma Gandhi of India, who said, “the greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”Cat declawing is inhumane and should be outlawed. I hope it passes in every state soon.Ms., Richards also states that the Democrats, who now control New York state government, should pay more attention to “dignity-of-life” issues, especially on the issue of banning abortion.It seems that the pro-life movement condemns all abortion, period.They are hypocrites when they ignore or minimize life after birth. Issues like poverty, education, income inequality and the inhumane treatment of migrants in cages don’t seem to matter. I’m proud to be a Democrat and animal lover in New York state.Lori HudsonPattersonvilleMelania stays quiet on border situationBorder Wall – where is Melania Trump? Any other first lady would have voiced their opinion on the abuse the children are experiencing at our border.Joseph RownySaratoga SpringsMore from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationGov. Andrew Cuomo’s press conference for Sunday, Oct. 18EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motorists Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionTrump family never served in militaryJust a reminder for those readers who reveled in Donald Trump’s 4th of July “Me Day” parade, the Trump family has lived in the United States for more than 150 years, and not one of them, not one, has ever served in the U.S. military. Walter WoukSummitlast_img read more

October 6

Low maintenance Queenslander style home attracts buyers, investors

first_img10 St Clair St, KedronMore from newsFor under $10m you can buy a luxurious home with a two-lane bowling alley5 Apr 2017Military and railway history come together on bush block24 Apr 2019This three-bedroom, two-bathroom home at Kedron is all about low maintenance living.The property at 10 St Clair St, is being marketed by Ray White – Wilson selling agent Brooke Copping, who said the home was built in 2013.The elevated and extensively replicated Queenslander provides the opportunity for the next owner to build in underneath (already legal height) and create a large family home.Ms Copping said, alternatively downsizers and young families could enjoy the practical and low-maintenance layout with no further work required.The home is on a 415sq m block and goes to auction on October 5 at 6pm.last_img read more

December 19

Big Changes in Science Publishing Underway

first_imgPeople are so used to peer-reviewed scientific journals behind paywalls, it’s hard to think of any other way. Till now.Not many decades ago, students needing to write term papers on science went to the library, pored through booklets of the Reader’s Guide to Periodical Literature, then walked through aisle after aisle of tall bookshelves, scanning Dewey Decimal labels on tomes of scientific journals. Seeking the papers jotted down on their notepads, they would run across thousands of pages of jargon in fine print interrupted with with graphs and equations. This experience undoubtedly colored students’ perceptions of science itself: austere, unapproachable, intimidating.Now, research can be found with a few mouse clicks and read on a home computer screen or even a smartphone. An industry of science reporters dumbs down the research in friendly press releases, embedding catchy photos and video clips. It may be much less intimidating, but leaves some traditions intact: it’s not official “science” without anonymous peer review done in advance. And you have to pay money to see it.The Revolution in Science MediaThe revolution in science publishing that is underway is changing those traditions, too, offering new ways to think about fundamental questions, like what are the hallmarks of science? Who owns it? Must publishing practices be set in stone? Why can’t research be criticized immediately by real people with identities, and corrected immediately? How can biases and conflicts of interest be disclosed more easily? What about science fraud? Why can’t ordinary citizens contribute to scientific knowledge? Here are some recent articles asking such questions.A proposal for the future of scientific publishing in the life sciences (Stern and O’Shea, PLoS Biology). This article hits the nail on the head, addressing many of the questions above. Stern and O’Shea advocate more freedom for people to contribute to the science discussion, and for ideas to be criticized openly after publication:Science advances through rich, scholarly discussion. More than ever before, digital tools allow us to take that dialogue online. To chart a new future for open publishing, we must consider alternatives to the core features of the legacy print publishing system, such as an access paywall and editorial selection before publication. Although journals have their strengths, the traditional approach of selecting articles before publication (“curate first, publish second”) forces a focus on “getting into the right journals,” which can delay dissemination of scientific work, create opportunity costs for pushing science forward, and promote undesirable behaviors among scientists and the institutions that evaluate them. We believe that a “publish first, curate second” approach with the following features would be a strong alternative: authors decide when and what to publish; peer review reports are published, either anonymously or with attribution; and curation occurs after publication, incorporating community feedback and expert judgment to select articles for target audiences and to evaluate whether scientific work has stood the test of time. These proposed changes could optimize publishing practices for the digital age, emphasizing transparency, peer-mediated improvement, and post-publication appraisal of scientific articles.The effect of publishing peer review reports on referee behavior in five scholarly journals (Nature Communications). What happens when peer review reports are published along with the science? The argument has been reviewers would shy away from submitting reviews, but a study of thousands of examples in an experiment showed that “publishing reports did not significantly compromise referees’ willingness to review, recommendations, or turn-around times.” Nature‘s editors found this study instructive. They plan to offer it to scientists, but not make it compulsory.The itching ears of peer review (World Magazine). Last November, Julie Borg reported on the hoax by social scientists who had submitted “absurd, bogus papers to well-known academic journals to show how easily studies can pass the supposedly rigorous peer review processif they spout trendy, liberal dogma. The scholars submitted 20 hoax papers to journals that focused on race, gender, sexuality, and other politically charged issues. Much to the scientific community’s shame, seven of the papers passed peer review and were published.”Use of liberal buzzwords and progressive ideas appeared to relax editors’ standards and let the papers through. One of the submitted papers even quoted from Hitler’s Mein Kampf in a feminist context. John Stonestreet remarked, “With mainstream academic journals going to the dogs, now’s not the time for Christians to lose our educational souls to fashionable nonsense.”Doubts and dialogue may alter public perceptions of science (University of Copenhagen). Is it OK to doubt what scientists say? These authors think so.Science projects within controversial fields such as synthetic biology could benefit from experimenting with communication settings in which experts share their thoughts and feelings with each other and the public. This allows for a more open and constructive dialogue with the public about research – and may even generate new research ideas, a new PhD thesis shows.What bioRxiv’s first 30,000 preprints reveal about biologists (Nature). Some biologists are following a pre-review publishing trend set by physicists. Cornell’s arXiv server allows physicists and mathematicians to put their ideas out on the internet for their colleagues to read and discuss. With over 1.5 million submissions over its 28-year history, “e-publishing” of “preprints” has a strong track record. Five years ago, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory began a similar website for biologists called BioRxiv. The response has been tremendous, Nature says, showing a million downloads a month. One benefit for science itself is the publication of negative results, “which are rarely published in journals.” And yet they are important. If an experiment fails, other scientists need to know.European funders detail their open-access plan (Science). This in-depth article from Nov 2018 discusses “Plan S,” a European initiative to make all scientific research open-access (OA)—a fundamental change in the way science has traditionally been disseminated. Naturally, this has leading journals concerned, since paywall fees represent a large portion of their income. Some funding agencies may not even consider a paper if OA is not provided. One argument for OA is that science belongs to everyone, and stakeholders who fund it with their taxes should not have to pay additional fees to see the results. Journals argue that they provide added value with summaries and reviews, and a rigorous peer review system, but their complaints seem self-serving. OA proponents appear to have the stride in this race.Time to break academic publishing’s stranglehold on research (New Scientist). This article, also from November, explains some of the enthusiasm behind open access. They want to stop the evil, greedy publishers who are keeping your science from you.Here is a trivia question for you: what is the most profitable business in the world? You might think oil, or maybe banking. You would be wrong. The answer is academic publishing. Its profit margins are vast, reportedly in the region of 40 per cent.The reason it is so lucrative is because most of the costs of its content is picked up by taxpayers. Publicly funded researchers do the work, write it up and judge its merits. And yet the resulting intellectual property ends up in the hands of the publishers. To rub salt into the wound they then sell it via exorbitant subscriptions and paywalls, often paid for by taxpayers too.Now that they have you up in arms in class warfare, New Scientist’s editors feel obliged to explain the “whiff of hypocrisy” you may smell, since they also charge for their magazine. “But good journalism does not come free,” the capitalists explain sheepishly in parens. Nevertheless, “The academic publishing business model is indefensible,” they go on to say. “Practically everybody – even the companies that profit from it – acknowledges that it has to change.”Revolutions often go to radical extremes. In the midst of the publishing revolution, we must remember that intellectual property creators have rights. For instance, musicians and filmmakers have suffered miserably because of online access. Thieves will upload whole movies, books or musical works without a qualm, leaving creators at a huge loss of expected revenue. This is unethical; a free society depends on copyrights. Not everything belongs to everybody. When that becomes the rule, nobody has the incentive to create. Science publishing is more complicated, because there are multiple stakeholders. Governments have interest in funding research for reasons of prestige, national security, or prosperity. Labs and institutions are often the recipients of funds, delivering research results, but have bills to pay as well. Scientific journals and magazines have long been the primary distributors of research knowledge. Journals may make a lot of money, but we must not fall into the trap of jealousy. Socialists breed contempt for the rich; being rich is not evil, if wealth is earned with integrity. At CEH, we’re not so much concerned with how much money they make, but their bias.So who owns science? The government doesn’t; their money is taxpayer money. Do taxpayers own science? Much of it, yes, but they own it through electing representatives who are expected to use judgment and knowledge to make wise decisions about spending priorities. It’s simplistic for citizens to demand all research as their property just because part of their taxes pay for it. There are national security risks in that attitude; some research has dual use, legitimate for the military but dangerous in the public domain. It’s also unfair to publishing companies for citizens to force them out of business on that argument. What about their writers who organize, analyze, and editorialize on recent findings? What about their layout artists, and expenses such as office space and equipment? Destroy one business, and you often damage whole communities who service their needs.We don’t begrudge journals, magazines and institutions for being in business and making a profit; we just demand changes to their anti-conservative, anti-design, pro-Darwin bias. If they really reported fairly on intelligent design and used critical reasoning about evolutionary claims, that would be great. We also demand fiscal responsibility and accountability. Simultaneously, the public has the right to know about some of the research they paid for with their tax dollars. Here’s a compromise: offer both Open Access and dressed-up publishing of research, and present it fairly, with a variety of viewpoints. Many people are probably not going to read raw scientific papers. Journalists have a gift of writing for the public and for the scientific community as well. They can do this online and for print, supported by subscriptions, advertising and foundations. Get the government out of private business, but let the public have their due. And demand the government stop funding unethical research (like fetal tissue or human cloning), and reduce wasteful research (like the effect of Swedish massage on rabbits). If people really want to know how fast crawfish run on treadmills, they can experiment at home.As with so many human activities, a free market is best. That needs to include a free market of ideas (see FreeScience.today).(Visited 399 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

December 18

Flight lands safely after poisoning scare

first_imgAn FBI spokesman says the man stood up during the flight Monday to make the claim but that there is no indication that any passengers were poisoned. United Airlines says Flight 116 continued as scheduled after the man made the statement.A passenger from another plane at the terminal says a heavy police contingent greeted the flight’s arrival at Newark Liberty Airport.University of San Francisco student Merrill Amos tells The Associated Press than more than a couple dozen police and emergency vehicles were on the tarmac. She says she saw a staircase pulled up to the plane and an ambulance nearby.“He wasn’t passed-out limp, but he looked very sluggish,” Ms Amos said.last_img read more

November 28

From Dehradun to Switzerland, Monisha Kaltenborn’s come a long way

first_imgBorn as Monisha Narang in Dehradun, India, May 10, 1971. She moved to Austria as an eight-year old child when her parents emigrated and took over Austrian citizenship. Till then, she studied at the Welham Girls School, Dehradun.Monisha studied law at the University of Vienna, graduating in 1995, then completed a masters’ degree in International Business Law at the London School of Economics. She simultaneously worked for the United Nations Industrial Development Organization and the UN Commission for International Trade Law, and on completion of studies worked for various legal firms: Gleiss Lutz in Stuttgart; Wolf & Theis in Vienna and finally for the Fritz Kaiser Group in 1998-1999.Kaiser, who was part owner of the Sauber team in Formula One, was responsible for bringing Monisha into the sport. She was given charge of the team’s corporate and legal affairs.By 2000, Kaiser had sold his shares but Monisha remained with the team as head of its legal department. She was made a member of the team’s management board in 2001 and in early 2010, following the team’s return to independent status following the withdrawal of former partner BMW, was appointed CEO.Monisha is also a member of the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile’s (FIA) Commission for Women and Motorsport. On May 16, 2012, she was rewarded with 33.3% shares of Sauber Motorsport.She met her husband Jens Kaltenborn during her first job in Stuttgart and got married in Dehradun. They have two children and live in Ksnacht, close to the Sauber factory in Hinwil, Switzerland.last_img read more

November 27

Asian Games: India lose out on gold

first_imgWhen Saurav Ghosal stepped out of the glass court on Tuesday after an hour and 15 minutes of energy-sapping action, his face reflected the anguish he was feeling.It is not every day that one finds oneself on the verge of a historic Asian Games gold medal, only to be denied by a sudden reversal of fortunes. One wonders how long it will take Ghosal to recover after he squandered a two-game lead and a match point in the third to lose 10-12, 2-11, 14-12, 11-8, 11-9 in the squash men’s singles final to Kuwait’s Abdullah Al Muzayen. To be in the driver’s seat for so long and not finish the job will haunt him for a long time.It was India’s first silver medal ever in squash at the Asian Games. All the earlier ones were bronze, but that was scant consolation for the Kolkatan.At the end, he could not hide his frustration as Abdullah lay prostrate on the court after his Houdini act. At the medal ceremony too, Ghosal wore a forlorn expression. This was not a silver won, but a gold lost.”I can’t express what’s going on inside my mind. I came here to win gold and I feel sad that I didn’t win it. But you have to give it to him (Abdullah) as he came back from 0-2 down,” Ghosal said after the five-game gut-wrencher.”He hit some unbelievable shots which I can’t even explain. He had to do something very special to get me from that point and unfortunately for me he saved that best for the last.”advertisementIt was a far cry from the way in which the match started. Ghosal, sporting a navy blue T-shirt, had Abdullah in a spin with his guile and clever changes of pace as he realised that the Kuwaiti thrived on power. There were times when Abdullah was stranded in the forecourt as the Indian would pin him down with his angled shots.It was a study in contrasts. Ghosal was trim and fast, covering the court like a hare. On the other hand, Abdullah was the embodiment of brute force.The contest was gladiatorial in nature but generally played in a good spirit. There was one moment when Abdullah went full stretch with the racquet flying out of his hand. Ghosal picked it up and gave it to his opponent.However, once Ghosal blew a match point in the third game, it all started going downhill for him. Abdullah decided to make full use of the second life. All of a sudden, Ghosal looked lost. It was as if he had been blinded by Abdullah’s power and aggression.”I had one match point but he played a very good point. There was not a single moment in the entire match when there were any easy points given by either of us. The shots he was hitting were outstanding. What can I say! Everything came off for him towards the end,” the Indian said.Frequent interruptions and asking for ‘let’ did disturb the pattern of play. “The court was slippery with sweat towards the end and had to be swept. It gave me some time to get my breath back,” said Abdullah. Finally, Ghosal lost the match while expecting a ‘let’, and was left to wonder what could’ve been had he killed the match off when he had the chance.last_img read more