Japanese geeks skydive using Google Earth

first_imgI’ve always wanted to go skydiving, but I have a fairly accurate perspective of my own ability to stave off mortal terror. What happens when you vomit out your spleen in sheer terror while plummeting miles down to earth at a rate of 32 miles per second per second? I’m not entirely sure, but I’m pretty sure the throw-up never even gets out of your throat. I digress: what I need is some sort of skydiving simulator, without the actual threat of a chute not opening and gelatinizing myself face first against the hard chin of the Earth. Looks like I’m not the only one to think of such a thing, though: check out this group of Japanese kids who got together and used Google Earth to set-up their own virtual skydiving simulator!AdChoices广告This is just totally awesome. Surrounding their simulator with blue plastic to simulate the sky, then spraying it with white spray paint to simulate clouds, these Japanese geeks then used an overhanging projector hooked up to a laptop to project a Google Earth skyview upon the ground.Then two would-be skydivers were hauled up on a pulley system, and things got fun. As friends aimed industrial fans at them and sprayed them with a fire extinquisher (to simulate wind shear and the sensation of falling through a cloud), a person manning the laptop slowly zoomed into Google Earth, drawing them ever closer to landing.Pretty awesome. These are some geeks I want to party with.last_img read more

Read More →

Al Gore Calls out Fox News Over Climate Change Coverage

first_imgA Fox News internal memo uncovered by media watchdog Media Matters is being held up as evidence of an anti-environmental bias. The memo sent by the cable news channel’s Washington bureau chief Bill Sammon dates back to last January. It asks reporters to call into question the “veracity of climate change data.”“[W]e should refrain from asserting that the planet has warmed (or cooled) in any given period without IMMEDIATELY pointing out that such theories are based upon data that critics have called into question,” wrote Sammon. “It is not our place as journalists to assert such notions as facts, especially as this debate intensifies.”Former Vice President Al Gore called out the cable news channel in a blog post titled “Fox News Manipulates Climate Coverage.” “[T]here’s no legitimate debate: the planet is warming,” wrote Gore. “Moreover, man-made global warming pollution is the principal cause.”last_img read more

Read More →

Netflix Available on Boxee Box at Long Last

first_imgTo show its love on this special Valentine’s Day, Boxee Box announced it will now allow Netflix streaming in the US and Canada. Boxee dealt with some delays — Netflix was supposed to be available to the Boxee Box by the end of 2010, and then it was supposed to be available in January –, but Boxee Box owners can finally breath a sigh of relief.In an e-mail from Boxee, the company said it was bummed it couldn’t get it out sooner, but that it’s “happy to have the Netflix app just in time for Valentine’s Day so our users can have a date night with their Boxee Box (and hopefully a significant other).”The user interface of the new Netflix app is the same as the one recently released for Google TV and Sony’s PlayStation 3. It allows users to search and browse the entire catalog. Automatic firmware updates will roll-out later this week, but owners can force the download now by updating the firmware manually. [Update: The Netflix service will cost $7.99 a month.]last_img read more

Read More →

Google Apps user needs 10000 contacts Google says no

first_imgWhile I doubt many people will ever reach 10,000 contacts it is something to keep in mind. It also makes very little sense as to why 10,000 is the limit. Any ideas?Read more at FeldThoughts There are many limits I can see a user reaching on their PCs and in the online services they use. Storage is the main concern with your Gmail account having a storage limit, your Dropbox account having a ceiling depending on your account tier, and ISPs increasingly limiting our bandwidth quotas. One limit I never thought I’d see someone quote is a contacts limit, but that’s exactly what one Google Apps user is currently facing – he can’t add any more people to his list.Brad Feld, managing director of Foundry Group has recently hit such a limit on his Google Apps account. He thought it strange, so got his IT guy Ross to contact Google about increasing the limit. His mail simply said:AdChoices广告One of our users has hit some sort of limit of 10,000 contacts – we need this increased as this user needs more than 10,000. Can you let me know how to increase this limit? Google’s usual response to such a question is to increase the limit, or at least offer to for a price. Both would have been acceptable responses for Feld. But in this case it is a hard limit and Google responded as such:Hello Ross,Thank you for your message. I understand that you are inquiring about the Contact limit per user for a Google Apps for Business account.This is expected functionality at the moment and we suggest that you remove some of the contacts that you don’t use to free up some space on your account. You are not able to increase this amount, however if you would like you can submit a feature request for increasing the amount of Contacts each user has. To do this please follow these instructions1. Login to your Google Apps account.2. In your dashboard, scroll down to the very bottom on the screen and you will see a link called ‘Suggest a Feature.’3. Click on this link and you will be able to fill out a feature request.I hope you found this information useful, Ross and thank you for your understanding.last_img read more

Read More →

Apple awarded patent that could keep your iPhone 5 scratch free

first_imgOne of the key factors in Apple’s success in the gadget market over recent years is its ability to iterate a design and feature set. While the original iPhone was a game changer, it did have its faults. But importantly, the new iPhone models that followed fixed those issues while continuing to develop the device and the platform.A new patent granted to Apple this week could hint at yet another issue the company has solved. The iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad all look great when you first buy them, but after months of use the cases will no doubt have a few scratches on them. It’s the kind of thing we all put down to general wear and tear, and it is pretty much unavoidable.The patent Apple has secured is for adding a nitride layer to devices. This layer is transparent and invisible to the eye, but it manages to stop the underlying materials from getting scratched. If Apple coats the next generation of its iDevices in this nitrate layer it could mean an end to scratched cases, or at the very least they stay scratch free for longer.The awarded patent is entitled “Nitriding stainless steel for consumer products” and the abstract makes it clear this is a relatively cheap solution for protecting a device. It’s also thin enough that not only does the underlying materials color come through, but so does its texture.Apple will be able to continue using stainless steel as a case material, and has detailed a salt bath nitrate process for applying this scratch-resistant layer to it. The process takes up to 90 minutes at 580 degrees Celsius to apply a layer up to 30 microns thick, after which it can be polished to leave a smooth finish. The resulting protective layer has a Vickers hardness test value of 1,000+.Read more at AppleInsiderMatthew’s OpinionThe patent was filed in April of last year, so this nitride layer may already be in use on some Apple products. If it isn’t, then it surely will be on the next generation of devices to cut down on the potential for scratches. There’s little reason not to use it as the result is invisible and incredibly thin.Apple isn’t shy of experimenting with new materials in a bid to make products better. There’s no better example of this than the experimentation with, and exclusive licensing of Liquidmetal. It’s an amorphous metal alloy that’s almost impossible to bend by hand and is already being considered for use in fuel cells.last_img read more

Read More →

Amazon introduces 114 Kindle with adverts

first_imgWhen Amazon introduced the latest generation of the Kindle e-reader, it also reduced the price significantly and opened up e-book reading on-the-go to the masses. If you didn’t need 3G then a Kindle could be yours for just $139, and they have been selling incredibly well ever since launch.But Amazon is determined to continue lowering prices when it can, and today it has done that by introducing a $114 Kindle option. In return for that $25 saving you do need to endure something: Special Offers.AdChoices广告The new model is actually called Kindle with Special Offers and is described as being exactly the same WiFi Kindle, but users will have their screensavers sponsored and adverts displaying during navigation of the Kindle user interface. They won’t appear while you are reading, however, which would surely upset a lot of users.The Special Offers may in fact end up being for goods you actually care about. The first batch includes a $10 for $20 Amazon Gift Card offer, $1 for an MP3 music album on Amazon, and $10 credit for buying an e-book with a Visa card. Add those desirable offers to a limitation of outside of reading on the device, and it doesn’t sound like a bad deal.Amazon also wants to ensure you are seeing adverts that are relevant. So it has also introduced an app called AdMash. Users can use it to vote on the sponsored screensavers Amazon is considering offering, but importantly before they make it to the Kindle. That way Amazon hopes only ads applicable to the largest Kindle user base make it through.Kindle with Special Offers will be available from May 3rd, but can be pre-ordered now at that new low price point.Read more at the Amazon press release, via TechCrunchlast_img read more

Read More →

Lenovo to launch ThinkPad Tablet running Android 30

first_imgRead more at This is my next 2011 has always been viewed as the year Apple‘s competitors would start to offer some serious alternatives to the iPad. Well, it’s 4 months into the year, and Lenovo has just had a pretty serious contender of its own called the ThinkPad Tablet leaked via a set of PowerPoint slides.ThinkPad has always been a name associated with high-quality laptops running a Windows operating system. The ThinkPad Tablet is different though, as it will run Android 3.0. As for the rest of the specs, it looks to be an impressive 10.1-inch tablet:AdChoices广告10.1-inch IPS capacitive display @1280 x 800Display is pen compatible for sketching and writingNvidia Tegra 2 dual-core processor16, 32 and 64GB storage optionsWiFi, 3G and 4G optionsUSB 2.0, Micro USB, 3-in-1 SD Card, and mini-HDMIFront and rear camerasWeight: 1.6 poundsDimensions: 258.4 x 177.3 x 14mmWhile the underlying hardware looks solid, Lenovo has also spent time creating its own interface solution to sit on top of Android 3.0 rather than relying on the default experience. It is being referred to as the Lenovo Family UI.Lenovo is also clearly aiming this at the business user with supporting slides proclaiming “For on-the-go business professionals”. This is further backed up by the existence of a keyboard case which effectively turns the tablet into a ThinkPad laptop.As for the all-important price, Lenovo is starting from a very acceptable $499 which will likely get you a WiFi-only tablet. We can also expect to see this launch at some point in August, although July has been mentioned.The slides that were leaked are a few months old, so we expect Lenovo has further refined the Family UI. There’s also support for a bunch of popular apps and service which is sure to have grown by the time we reach July. Here’s the two slides showing what is expected to be supported and offered on the tablet:last_img read more

Read More →

Samsung considering webOS purchase

first_imgHP is look for a way to profit from webOS that doesn’t require manufacturing hardware. It’s also said to be actively shopping for licensees and partners for the OS. And, like IBM before it, HP is also looking to sell off its PC business. Samsung was rumored to be interested in the latter, though the Korean giant has since denied having any interest. But could it be that signals were being misread? Might Samsung be interested in webOS?It’s certainly possible. Samsung’s chairman Lee Kun-hee has talked previously about the fact that importance in the IT world has been shifting toward software companies and away from hardware companies. You need only look at the homogenaity of Android smartphones for proof of that — devices are becoming more an more similar, with a few millimeters of chassis often being the only distinguishing hardware feature.Samsung is also said to be more than a tad nervous about Google’s acquisition of Motorola Mobility and might be looking for a backup plan should its own Bada OS run up against a brick wall. That certainly wasn’t the case at launch time, with Bada enjoying the most successful debut since the original iPhone, but the mobile space is constantly evolving and webOS could provide Samsung with a strong, complete mobile OS for both phones and tablets as well as an associated patent portfolio that could provide some much-needed protection in the increasingly litigious world in which it competes.With Samsung recently snapping up one of HP’s own — the Personal Systems Group’s VP of marketing Raymond Wah — the plot is thickening. Will Samsung pull the trigger and add a fourth OS to its mobile lineup? Share your thoughts in the comments!More at SlashGear, and previous coverage of this from June 2011.last_img read more

Read More →

Geek deals save 449 on Dell XPS 15 quadcore laptop

first_imgXPS is arguably the best consumer line of laptops that Dell has going now. They usually have more power than the popular Inspiron line, offer parts upgrades that aren’t too pricey, all while being relatively easy on the eyes.This particular deal on a Dell XPS 15 is a great example. For $449 off the retail price, this build lands you a quad-core setup with Core i7 processors, 8GB RAM, discrete NVIDIA GeForce 540M graphics (2GB), and a spacious 1TB hard drive. It’s not super slim or light at 5.96lbs., but it’s still easy enough to tote around and powerful enough to supplant most desktops.It’s a fairly serious configuration and in the same general price range as those come-hither ultrabooks, which don’t offer nearly as much horsepower or space. Additionally, a Blu-ray player and burner comes built in, along with 2.1 JBL speakers with Waves Maxx Audio 3 and a 2MP webcam. The HDMI, DisplayPort, and two USB 3.0 inputs are a nice addition, and the TV tuner might be the best-kept secret on this laptop.This model also has a 1080p display, which is pretty unusual for even high-end laptops, unless you’re willing to pay for the upgrade. Usually, all these extra would tack hundreds of dollars onto the price. Instead, Dell has it up for offer at a 27% discount, at $1199 for a nicely outfitted system.Check out this deal on LogicBuy.last_img read more

Read More →

Hitachi creates stealth ink to invisibly track products wipe out counterfeiting

first_imgIf you buy a product that’s faulty or damaged and return it, you want to know the manufacturer is taking appropriate action to stop the same thing happening again. But typically tracing a product back to figure out where it got damaged is limited to a batch of those items. Hitachi has decided to solve that problem with a new invisible product tracking system.The new system is capable of printing a unique id on to any product using stealth ink and an inkjet printer. That id can only be seen and read when placed under a UV light source, and contains detailed information about how it was produced. Not only is the id easy to apply to individual products and a multitude of different surface types, reading it can be done at a rate of 160 meters per second. So that’s products passing under the scanner at a rate of up to 160m/s.The unique ids should make it much easier to track specific items, while at the same time they don’t interfere with the design of product packaging at all. But they also have an additional benefit: the invisible ids can be used to check if a product is counterfeit or not.Obviously such a check relies on counterfeiters not having access to the stealth ink printer, but Hitachi should be able to stop such hardware falling into the wrong hands. In terms of checking a product is real, you just need access to a UV light, which are pretty cheap to pick up.I can also see this being of great use for protecting devices. For example, Apple could offer to add an invisible id to that expensive MacBook Pro you just purchased containing all your details in case it gets stolen.last_img read more

Read More →

Watch a Formula One 2 second pit stop in slow motion

first_imgFormula One is the pinnacle of motor sport, and that’s partly because the teams are always trying to cut down on the time it takes to do specific tasks during a race, alongside innovating with technology to make the cars go ever faster on less fuel.Having the fastest car on the track is certainly the focus for the teams, but each race has at least one mandatory pit stop to change the tires on a car. Typically a pit stop can last anything from 15-25 seconds, and most of that time is lost driving into and out of the pits at a set top speed. However, the actual changing of the tires is where time can be saved, with the ultimate goal being to complete the operation in a mere 2 seconds.Changing four tires on a car in 2 seconds sounds impossible, but most of the teams in Formula One today are getting close to achieving that. One of those is the current World Champions Red Bull, and the video below shows a 2.05 second pit stop happening in slow motion.The key to that speed is the manpower involved. Each wheel has three people working on it. The first undoes the wheel nut, the second removes the tire, and the third handles putting the new tire in the right position before the nut is tightened by the first guy again. Supporting those twelve tire changers are two jack men, front and rear, who lift the car off the ground. And then there’s one final person who stands at the front of the car informing the driver when they can drive away (although that person is being replaced with a lights system by some teams).So a 2 second pit stop requires a total of fifteen people working on the car, each doing their task with perfect precision so as not to slow the operation down. There’s also an important task the driver has to do, and that’s hit his mark. If he doesn’t stop in the correct location then the pit crew has to adjust and that costs valuable time, maybe even a second.Here’s another great video, this time from the Sauber team showing exactly how the pit stop tire change works.It’s not surprising things go wrong sometimes as there’s just so much that can go wrong. And that’s part of the reason why Formula One can be so exciting to watch, and why races can be won and lost in the pit lane.last_img read more

Read More →

Pro gaming pays Fatal1ty tops the eSports charts earning 454544

first_imgProfessional video games tournaments, so-called electronic sports or eSports, are becoming increasingly big business. In fact, it has reached a point where parents may actually encourage their kids to go pro after viewing the latest earning figures.The e-Sports Earnings website has posted the top 100 pro gamers based on how much money they have earned over their careers solely from eSports tournaments. These aren’t small figures. In 100th place is Polish player neo who has earned a grand total of $66,183.28, with his most lucrative game being Counter-Strike. Move up to 50th place and we see the Korean player JangBi. He has earned $128,347.99 by mostly competing in StarCraft: Brood War.The money starts to increase substantially when we enter the top 10. The 10th place pro gamer earned $267,699.10, and 5th place $367,902.11. But top of the list is a name many gamers will know quite well: US pro-gamer Johnathan “Fatal1ty” Wendel. Over the course of 35 tournaments he has earned a massive $454,544.98. Over half of that has been collected playing Painkiller ($240,550.00).Becoming experienced enough to compete with these guys takes a lot of hard work and training, just like anything you want to get good at. But the money is clearly there to be made, and if you’re serious (and good enough) it could actually turn into a career.It’s also worth pointing out that the totals listed for these pro-gamers are just for eSports tournaments. They should all be suplementing that income with sponsorship deals and other tournament series. Fatal1ty is a good example of this, having had a series of ASRock PC gaming components, and even gaming food, carry his name or official backing.last_img read more

Read More →

Geek deals 200 gift card with Alienware BioShock bundle more

first_imgAbout the only time our deal hunting team finds special offers on an Alienware PC is when it’s on closeout, but they are sweetening the pot on their new Haswell-based Alienware 17 with a hefty $200 e-gift card. The 17 is part of the trio of new Haswell models announced a couple months ago that finally brought a fresh new design to the table.Like it’s larger cousin the 18 and it’s only slightly-smaller brother the 14, the Alienware 17 sports a fresh new chassis with angular, flat surfaces.They make no apologies over size either; the Alienware 17 is nearly two inches thick and starts at over nine pounds. But when you consider that it packs things like four USB 3.0 ports, Gigabit Ethernet, both HDMI input and outputs, Mini DisplayPort, a 7-in-1 media card reader, surround sound output, and support for dual disk drives, all that heft suddenly makes sense. Don’t forget about the slot-loading optical drive and standard multi-zone customizable LED lighting.We found a $50 coupon that works on all models, but right now you can get a $200 gift card on several of the higher-end versions. An entry-level model with HD+ screen, 8GB RAM, and Nvidia GTX 765M 2GB graphics card starts at just $1,449 after coupon. The $200 gift card offer starts on the exceptionally well-configured model with a faster Core i7-4800MQ processor, 1080p IPS display, 16GB of RAM, 750GB HDD plus 64GB mSATA SSD, Nvidia GTX 770M 3GB graphics, and slot-loading Blu-ray drive. All that tech will run you $2,399, but the $200 gift card helps offset some of that damage.The even higher-end configurations with a $200 gift card will make you weep, both at the awesome specs and the loan-worthy price tags. Suffice it to say that if you want an overclockable processor, RAID 0 SSDs plus a 1TB storage drive, and 4GB Nvidia graphics card, you can’t afford it if you have to ask how much.Alienware 17 Haswell Core i7 Gaming Laptop starting at $1,449 plus free shipping (reg. $1,499)Our other top deals:BioShock Infinite, BioShock 1, and BioShock 2 (PC download) for $19.99 (reg. $99.97 | via Amazon)Seagate Expansion 3TB USB 3.0 external hard drive for $99.99 plus free shipping (reg. $149.99 | via Newegg)Dell E2014T 20-inch multi-touch monitor with three-year warranty for $199.99 plus free shipping (reg. $249.99 | use coupon QT4HLGX4TMPLT7)last_img read more

Read More →

Journeys with TheJournalie In the country there are people who dont go

first_img 4 Comments Click here to enter Image: Duhill Community News via Facebook Oct 26th 2016, 12:29 PM Short URL Journeys with TheJournal.ie: ‘In the country, there are people who don’t go beyond the local shop’ Would you like 50 free trips for your local organisation? Get your entries in before Friday. Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Share98 Tweet Email1 10,843 Views center_img Image: Duhill Community News via Facebook OVER THE PAST month, TheJournal.ie has teamed up with Irish Rail to provide free trips to the most deserving individuals and groups across the country.The partnership will see 5,000 people take return trains to the destination of their choice.We have already introduced you to some of the winners but there is still time to nominate anyone who is doing fantastic work your community before the closing date on Friday, 28 October.Journeys with TheJournal.ie is an initiative that seeks to support organisations in the voluntary, community, sporting and charity sector by bringing them where they need to go over the coming year.This could bring your local club, group or organisation to that special event you would love to attend, on a well-deserved outing, or even be used as a specific support to members of the group who need help to travel to a destination. http://jrnl.ie/3046614 By Fora Staff They say in Dublin people don’t go beyond the Pale, but in the countryside, there are people who don’t go further than the local shop. If we had an event available like this to us, it would definitely provide a talking point for years to come.“It’s great to win, we’re delighted,” she told TheJournal.ie after they were chosen winners, explaining that Duhill is “a hall and a church” since the last pub shut its doors.“But we had 70 people out walking last night. We all met at the hall with a torch and hi-vis jackets and went out for an hour – about 6k.“The eldest was 82 and the youngest was 14. It’s about promoting health, as well as having the chat and talking so nobody feels on their lonesome.” Source: Duhill Community News via FacebookTheJournal.ie is announcing one winner a week, over four weeks, but there are 100 round trips to be won – for up to 50 people in a group at a time, so a whopping 5,000 tickets – and you can apply until 28 October 2016.Read: “A fabulous, happy day” – 100 reasons to get on boardMore: Journeys with TheJournal.ie: Honouring the veterans of Jadotville Our latest winner will be using the prize to bring a gang from Tipperary on tour.Duhill Community Council works tirelessly to bring people together in the small, rural area in the south of the county.Its 10 volunteer members organise card drives, festivals, parties, breakfasts, fitness classes, dramatic productions, cycles and walks (including a successful ’12 days of Christmas Walking’ event) for local people across the entire year.“We have recently lost the two pubs in the area,” secretary Maggie Moloney said in her application.“[They] were hubs for people to get together and meet. It is hoped through all our different activities, we can help combat rural isolation, and provide a sense of togetherness.” Volunteers at a Duhill Dash run Source: Duhill Community News via FacebookMoloney said the group would love to bring people on an away day – ‘Duhill on Tour’ – to Dublin, maybe for the Bloom festival in the summer or for the current exhibitions on at Kilmainham Gaol.“We are in a very rural area and any small effort to bring people together whether it be a card drive or a walk means so much to some people,” she wrote in her application.“These are the people who are living on their own or may be widowed – a lot of different circumstances – some people might just need a day off or away. Wednesday 26 Oct 2016, 12:29 PMlast_img read more

Read More →

Its not the States problem its the familys Care system to adopt

first_img Oct 30th 2016, 8:00 AM Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Sunday 30 Oct 2016, 8:00 AM Share177 Tweet Email3 THE CHILD AND Family Agency is adopting a new approach to dealing with families that involves asking them to “own their problem”, the agency’s chief executive has said.In a wide-ranging interview with TheJournal.ie this week, Fred McBride, who took on his role earlier this year, said Tusla wants to move more towards “sharing power and control and responsibility with children and families and communities, rather than the traditional rather paternalistic public service approach, which was very much doing things to people and for people”. Of course the State’s got to provide some kind of safety net, but we can’t allow people to get entangled in it.“Certainly part of my approach is getting families to own the problem, because unless they own the problem we’re not going to be able to work with them to move it on, and of course if they don’t own the problem then the State’s intervention increases accordingly,” he said.McBride stressed this is not about the State refusing to take children in care or failing to intervene robustly where necessary, rather it is about trying to pitch interventions at the right level.We do want to challenge families more, we want to demand a bit more from families to have aspirations and, as I say, to take ownership of the problem. It’s not the State’s problem, it’s the family’s problem, but our job is to try to support them to come up with solutions to their problem.Working togetherMcBride said this progressive approach to dealing with vulnerable children and families can only work with the cooperation of other state agencies. However budget constraints can “push people to guard their own budget and start to build barriers” he said.Perhaps there’s also a degree of professional preciousness or snobbery that prevents people from really valuing the contributions of other professionals.The problem, according to McBride, is predominantly a strategic one, and something that needs to be tackled at top management level.“I think there’s some good joint working happening at the frontline out in the localities.”Almost as if it happens because of good local relationships rather than as a result of a government or senior management mandate, and that mandate is really important, that needs to be given much more strongly.Many children in care are faced with upsetting situations in their everyday lives and are in need of supports outside of the agency’s remit like mental health services.When asked whether delays for children accessing mental health services impeded his organisation’s work, McBride was frank in his answer.Yes it can. And you know many reports – the National Child Review Panel, the child deaths [report], frequent reports – note that a lack of an appropriate and timely mental health service has been a contributory factor in some of those deaths, particularly the suicides.One barrier to supports is that many of these young people are not clinically mentally ill, he said. “Emotionally they’re not well, so it’s not necessarily a pure or clinical psychiatric approach that’s needed, it’s more a therapeutic approach”.“They need help, but if they don’t have a clinical diagnosis of mental illness, then the question is: What other type of help is there and who’s best placed to deliver that? That can be challenging.”He noted that he knows colleagues in the HSE want to expand services for young people and Tusla is “very willing” to contribute staff to create a multi-disciplinary approach.And also we’re trying to create some in-house Tusla therapeutic services, again multidisciplinary, with different types of therapies available – play therapy, art therapy, music therapy, psychotherapy, all the different types of services that can be brought to bear when a child is not technically clinically mentally ill but they’re emotionally damaged or suffering in some way.Social workersOne major criticism of the care system in recent years has centred on high numbers of children waiting for a social worker to be allocated to their case.Back in 2014, when Tusla was first established, there were 8,685 children waiting for a social worker to take on their case. As of August this year, that number has been brought down to 4,727.“That’s a near 50% reduction in two years. That’s good performance, whichever industry standard you might want to apply,” Mc Bride commented. “Now, it’s still 4,000 too many, but we have to look at that in the context of having 44,000 referrals a year.”“Since Tulsa was created, we’ve had a near 80% reduction in unallocated cases that were categorised as high priority.”Though there has been a vast improvement in the short life of the new agency, McBride conceded that the delays can make “a big difference” in some cases.Their problems are potentially getting worse and then we’re left to intervene in more of a crisis situation rather than at an earlier stage.However, he stressed that, while these families are waiting, “they’re not being ignored”.Their cases are reviewed on a weekly basis, with visits if necessary and input from schools.Whilst it’s not ideal, and you may get different social workers calling, that’s not ideal, and I’m not trying to say that it’s okay – it’s not – I’m just making the point that they’re not ignored. They’re kept under monitor and review in the event that should matters deteriorate or escalate, then an appropriate and proportionate response is given.MissingFinding the right solution for children who have to be taken from their parents is a tough task for the agency and in some cases the young person – particularly teenagers – will be resistant to the change in their life and leave their foster home or residential care unit.“Often actually they’re not missing – we know where they are, they’re just not where they’re meant to be,” McBride explained.“They’ll be at home with families or they’ll be with a friend and we know that, but sometimes trying to get a hold of them can be a bit trickier. If teenagers want to kind of evade adults they’ll find a way of doing it.”I think we need to be careful to separate out normal teenage behaviour – that coming home late kind of thing, or staying with a friend – from children whose general circumstances would place them at more significant risk should they go missing. And that’s what we’re trying to do.McBride said gardaí sometimes get “frustrated” with staff frequently reporting young people – sometimes the same young people multiple times – missing.Sometimes, when it’s not in their interest to be with their family, on occasions, they’re being harboured by their families – not illegally – but outside of their agreed plan.ChildcareMcBride also spoke about the recent announcement that, from next year, the government will offer a tax rebate for childcare – either with a childminder or a creche. However, this new scheme came under scrutiny in the last couple of weeks after it was revealed there are only 119 childminders registered with Tusla – and you have to use either a childminder or creche registered with the agency to benefit from it.Some counties do not have any childminders registered with the agency, as a person has  to take care of four or more children to do so.“In neighbouring jurisdictions, in the UK, you’ve got to register for any number of children and I thought that was a safer and more appropriate thing to do,” McBride said.“We’re responsible for the regulation and registration of early years service – creches and childminders, of course. As part of that, and we inspect them, but I think there needs to be much more of a focus on qualitative registration and inspection rather than that they meet basic minimum requirements.”McBride said this country has yet to see a “coherent cross-government early years strategy”, stressing he will need to take some responsibility for moving that along.“That strategy is not just about providing childcare, as important as that is, it is also about family support and parenting support and how we help children to develop these positive attachments early on in their lives and that’s a key bit for us.”Read: ‘Some flee immediately’: Migrants pretending to be children to get into Ireland> By Michelle Hennessy ‘It’s not the State’s problem, it’s the family’s’: Care system to adopt tough love approach The chief executive of Tusla said the agency wants families to share more power and responsibility, and to “own their problems”.center_img 33 Comments https://jrnl.ie/3046658 Short URL 23,860 Views Image: hands image via Shutterstock Image: hands image via Shutterstocklast_img read more

Read More →

Call for tougher sentences over burglaries that destroy entire communities or ways

first_img Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Tuesday 20 Feb 2018, 8:01 AM By Ruaidhrí Giblin Image: Sasko Lazarov/RollingNews.ie 12,824 Views Share Tweet Email http://jrnl.ie/3861232 Call for tougher sentences over burglaries that ‘destroy entire communities or ways of life’ Two cousins jailed over a ‘fatal burglary’ will have served their sentences by the time new jail terms are handed down. center_img Feb 20th 2018, 8:01 AM File photo File photo Image: Sasko Lazarov/RollingNews.ie TWO COUSINS JAILED for a “fatal burglary” at the home of a 62-year-old man will have served their prison sentences, which were found to be too lenient by the Court of Appeal, by the time fresh sentences are handed down.Michael Casey, 34, with an address at Clonlong halting site, Southill, Limerick, and David Casey, 23, with an address at Carragh Park, Belcamp, Dublin 17, had pleaded guilty to a series of burglaries, including one at the home of John O’Donoghue at Toomaline in Doon on 27 August 2015.O’Donoghue collapsed and died as he was about to confront the two intruders, who ran away without offering assistance.Judge Tom O’Donnell sentenced both men at Limerick Circuit Criminal Court to four-and-a-half years imprisonment, with the final year suspended, on 15 December 2016.The Court of Appeal found the men’s sentences to be “unduly lenient” following a review of sentence brought by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).The three-judge court was told yesterday that the Caseys are due for release from prison in the middle of April, days before the court’s judgment on the matter is due to be handed down on 17 April. Accordingly, the court remanded both men in custody to that date.In seeking a review of the Caseys’ sentences last December, counsel for the DPP, Thomas O’Malley BL, submitted that the Caseys targeted four residential properties and entered three. They were engaged in a “spree” which they had obviously planned, and David Casey was on bail at the time the offences were committed.While it was not alleged that the Caseys directly caused the death of O’Donoghue, O’Malley said there was “undoubtedly some causative link” between the Caseys’ behaviour and O’Donoghue’s sudden death.He said the impact on the victims, particularly O’Donoghue’s surviving sister who witnessed her brother die shortly after arriving home while the burglary was in progress, had to be considered. Property of significant economic and sentimental value was taken from the home of one of the other victims.The DPP made further “general submissions” to the court “in case the court may wish to offer some general guidance or guidelines on the sentencing” of burglaries “for the future”.O’Malley said the submission was being made “out of recognition of the undeniable social problem caused by residential burglaries”.‘Serious social problem’ O’Malley said residential burglaries are a “serious social problem” particularly where the dwelling happens to be occupied by an elderly, infirm or disabled person, and where it happens during the night or in the early hours when the person or persons are at home.It was clear from media reports, O’Malley said, that residential burglaries were occurring with a degree of frequency. That in itself made it “socially problematic”.He said the impact on victims was “multifaceted”. It had a serious impact on the person whose home was invaded but also affected those who were in similar circumstances, particularly when there was a burglary in a rural area.A single burglary in a rural area creates a “ripple of fear” throughout that area such that other people in the area “live in permanent fear or dread”.This meant that residential burglaries could destroy entire communities or ways of life, O’Malley said. It could lead people to alter their lifestyles, such as moving into sheltered accommodation. He said people felt at risk in their homes, the place they should feel most secure.O’Malley submitted that residential burglaries should be treated as a “special case”. It was already recognised, he said, that a residential burglary was at least as much an offence against the person as it was the property, and sometimes more so.While little or no property of any value may be taken, typically, the victim will continue to endure a sense of fear and insecurity for quite a long time to come.Mr Justice George Birmingham, who sat with Mr Justice Alan Mahon and Mr Justice John Edwards, said the court would deliver its judgment on 17 April.On an earlier occasion, prosecuting counsel, John G O’Sullivan BL, referred to the case as a “fatal burglary”.Comments are closed due to ongoing legal proceedings. Read: Most of those living in Ireland think the Irish language should be legally protected in the NorthRead: Unicef says ‘world is failing newborns’ as global baby mortality rates remain ‘alarmingly high’ Short URL No Comments last_img read more

Read More →

The justice system is a fing joke Parents react as sons killer

first_img The scene of the killing. Image: RollingNews.ie The scene of the killing. Image: RollingNews.ie ‘The justice system is a f***ing joke’: Parents react as son’s killer jailed for five years Justice Butler was forced to adjourn the hearing when friends and relatives of the dead man reacted angrily to the sentence. 30,801 Views Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Feb 20th 2017, 3:10 PM Share13 Tweet Email center_img http://jrnl.ie/3249255 By Peter Doyle THE GRIEVING PARENTS of a man stabbed to death during a brawl inside a bed and breakfast branded the justice system a ‘joke’ after their son’s killer was jailed for five years.Terence ‘Terry” Connors (42) had originally been charged with the murder of Peter Conroy (25), at Palmerstown Lodge B&B, Kennelsfort Road Lower, Palmerstown, Dublin 20 on 9 June, 2015.His plea of guilty to manslaughter and not guilty to murder was rejected by the State and last December Connors was convicted by a jury of Conroy’s manslaughter after a one-week trial.Today, at the Central Criminal Court, Connors, of Drumcairn Avenue, Tallaght, Dublin 24, was sentenced to seven years’ imprisonment, with the last two suspended, for killing Conroy.Speaking outside court, the dead man’s parents, Frank and Marion Conroy, broke down as they criticised the sentence handed down by Justice Paul Butler.Conroy said: “Peter was a loving son. He was a rock to us. He was a loving father.He didn’t deserve to be killed the way he was killed. He got no justice. Seven years, with two suspended for another person’s life. Where’s the justice in that? He (Connors) stabbed him four times and he got manslaughter.Wiping away tears, Mrs Conroy added:“How can you put a time on a person? Where’s is the justice?“The justice system is a fucking joke in this country.In any other country, he’d get more. You get more for robbing that you would for murder. His kids can see him walking around, go visit him. We will never see our son again.AdjournmentEarlier, Justice Butler was forced to adjourn the hearing when friends and relatives of the dead man reacted angrily when the sentence was delivered.Gardaí were forced to remove several people from the courtroom after one women shouted: “He (Connors) is laughing in our faces,” and one man rushed at the accused sitting in the dock.Another woman sitting in the public gallery was heard shouting at Connors: “If he smiles once more, I’ll fucking punch him.”During his trial, the court was told Connors had believed his children were in danger as the fighting between guests of the B&B and non-residents intensified when he fatally stabbed his victim.Delivering his sentence, the Justice Butler said that although the accused had returned to the scene of the brawl with a knife and was “seen to make a downwards motion towards the deceased” on CCTV, “the killing lacked the intention of a murder conviction”.The judge said the accused, whom he described as being from “a travelling background”, had “expressed remorse from the bottom of his heart”.However, he said the fact that Connors returned to the scene of the fight with a knife had been an aggravating factor in sentencing.Connors was also sentenced to two months’ jail for assaulting a woman, Elaine Blunt, during the same brawl. The judge suspended this sentence in full.The manslaughter sentence was backdated to 1 October, 2015.EvidenceDuring the one week trial the jury was told that Conroy died after suffering knife injuries to the head and neck. State Pathologist Professor Marie Cassidy said the fatal wound severed a vein causing him to die from bleeding and shock.CCTV showed a row involving two women and several men that began in the B&B at about 3.30am. Most of those involved, including the accused but not the deceased, had been at a wedding reception in Stillorgan earlier that day.Connors arrived home shortly after midnight and went to bed but he told gardai that he woke up to hear his children “roaring and shouting” and calling out for him. He said a fight had erupted downstairs and he grabbed a knife before rushing down.His partner, Brigid Connors, was involved in a fight with Elaine Blunt on the ground floor when Connors came downstairs. He kicked Ms Blunt and was found guilty of assault for this.The fight between the two women continued with one man trying to separate them. He opened the front door of the B&B to put them outside and a group of other men entered, leading to a fight involving the deceased and two of his associates against people living at the B&B.When one of the men threw a naggin of vodka at the accused or his son, who was standing beside him, the accused produced the knife and launched the fatal attack.Read: Over 200 jobs to be created at two new motorway service stations >Read: The figures that reveal Ryanair’s ‘very up and down’ relationship with Shannon Airport > 47 Comments Short URL Monday 20 Feb 2017, 3:10 PMlast_img read more

Read More →

The 5 at 5 Tuesday

first_img EVERY WEEKDAY EVENING, TheJournal.ie brings you the five stories you need to know as you head home for the day.1. #GRACE: Two previously unpublished reports into the shocking ‘Grace’ case have shown that 47 children were placed in a Waterford foster home at which there were concerns about sexual and physical abuse.2. #LIMERICK: Gardaí are investigating reports of a child being offered for sale in Limerick.3. #BUSES: The National Transport Authority has announced plans to plug the gap in the services that Bus Éireann plans to scrap on its Expressway routes.4. #FINE GAEL: TV3 has said it is interested in televising a live debate between the candidates for the Fine Gael leadership, after Enda Kenny steps down.5. #RADON: People in Galway have been warned about high levels of a cancer-causing radioactive gas in the area. By Órla Ryan 7,153 Views The 5 at 5: Tuesday 5 minutes, 5 stories, 5 o’clock… No Comments Share Tweet Email Tuesday 28 Feb 2017, 4:53 PM http://jrnl.ie/3263824 Feb 28th 2017, 4:53 PM Image: Shutterstock/Pavel_Klimenko Image: Shutterstock/Pavel_Klimenko Short URL Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more

Read More →

Protesters hurl cans of Pepsi at police during US May Day riots

first_img By AFP May 2nd 2017, 11:11 AM The election of Donald Trump is a challenge to all of us, whether we will stand up and speak up for our values, said Senator Dick Durbin, a Democrat.Labour groups representing labourers, hospital and home nursing care workers, food workers, teachers and others, called for a higher minimum wage.Abortion rights supporters held up signs in support of Planned Parenthood, a non-profit health provider that Republicans and the Trump administration are seeking to defund.Police reform and racial justice groups criticised the Trump administration’s immigration crackdown, including unsuccessful attempts to ban refugees and immigrants from certain Muslim-majority countries.“We have to come together and we have to stop this guy. He is not the king of the United States,” said Oscar Cruz, 58, describing himself as a Mexican immigrant who has lived in the United States for 28 years.President Trump has ordered more aggressive enforcement of immigration laws, speeded-up deportations, and ultimately wants to erect a wall along the US-Mexico border.“It’s criminalisation of our communities — black, Latino, Asian, Arab — that is the problem. That is what we’re organising against,” said Barbara Ransby, a professor at the University of Illinois.© – AFP 2017Read: A Ja Rule-organised festival promised music and models on the beach, instead it turned into chaos > Protesters hurl cans of Pepsi at police during US May Day riots There were violent scenes in many US states. Police in Portland. Short URL Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Share Tweet Email https://jrnl.ie/3368678 center_img POLICE IN THE US city of Portland declared a riot yesterday after “anarchists” threw rocks, smoke bombs and cans of Pepsi at officers in during a May Day rally.At least three people were arrested over the march. Several businesses in Portland’s downtown area were also vandalised by groups of people wearing black masks who were seen breaking storefront windows, throwing incendiary devices and attacking a police vehicle.The violence prompted authorities to cancel the permit for the march and warn that anyone remaining on the streets risked being arrested. People were advised to stay away from the area.“Due to actions of anarchists in #MayDayPDX march, permit was cancelled. Law-abiding participants asked to use sidewalks and leave the area,” the Portland police said in a tweet.“If you do not need to come to Downtown Portland, please stay away. #MayDayPDX is now considered a riot.”The rally had kicked off with speakers denouncing the recent crackdown by President Donald Trump’s administration on undocumented immigrants and discussing workers’ rights.But as the crowd marched in the downtown area, police said “anarchists” disrupted the march.In a nod to a failed ad campaign by Pepsi featuring supermodel Kendall Jenner walking through a street protest and handing a can of Pepsi to a police officer, some Portland marchers threw cans of Pepsi at police.Thousands march in citiesIn major cities like Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Washington, thousands took to the streets downtown to protest against Trump’s policies.New York’s initially peaceful demonstration of some 4,000 participants grew tense in the evening as protesters clashed with Trump supporters, some of them brandishing placards featuring the president’s slogan “Make America great Again.”Black-clad anti-Trump supporters, their faces uncovered but carrying anarchist black flags, also entered the scene. Image: Dave Killen Tuesday 2 May 2017, 11:11 AM 11,788 Views 33 Comments Police move in to quell Portland riot. Source: Dave Killen/PASeveral dozen police officers quickly arrived to separate the two groups and prevent violence. The protest began to disperse after sunset.More than 100 groups joined the march in Los Angeles.Police said at least one person was arrested after masked protesters threw rocks at supporters of Trump holding a rally in the downtown area. The protesters also burned an American flag.Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti addressed the crowd at one point, vowing that the city would push back against Trump’s policies and protect its large immigrant community.“As long as I am mayor, the LAPD will never be a deportation force,” he added. “They will be your police officers.”Marchers in Chicago, the de facto capital of the US Midwest, represented a wide variety of causes, including activists for immigrant rights and the environment, labour unions demanding a higher minimum wage, and supporters of reproductive rights.RalliesThere were colourful rallies before and after the two-mile march, with attendees carrying American and Mexican flags, the rainbow flag representing gay rights, and signs such as “Stop the Trump Agenda.” Police in Portland. Image: Dave Killenlast_img read more

Read More →

Poll Have you ever asked someone to pick up their litter

first_img Wednesday 21 Jun 2017, 12:45 PM By TheJournal.ie Team No, but I would if I caught them (1146) 62 Comments 14,978 Views Poll: Have you ever asked someone to pick up their litter? Give it to us straight. Be honest. Share13 Tweet Email APPLAUSE ALL ROUND for the winners of Ireland’s Best Kept Town and Villages competition which were announced yesterday.To get a community into good shape, it requires everyone to make an effort – and that includes being vigilant about litter. Now we will presume that all of our wonderful TheJournal.ie users are clean and tidy but have you ever found yourself bringing someone else to task for littering in front of you? YesNo, but I would if I caught themNo, I wouldn’t say anythingVote Yes (4052)center_img http://jrnl.ie/3455571 Image: Shutterstock/ratmaner Image: Shutterstock/ratmaner No, I wouldn’t say anything (2509) Poll Results: Jun 21st 2017, 12:45 PM Short URL Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more

Read More →