Moving out of their milestone 20th anniversary year, jamtronica pioneers STS9 have released a touching new tribute to keyboardist/flautist Kofi Burbridge and filmmaker James Dahl, both of whom passed away earlier in 2019. The band shared the new video for “Life’s Sweet Breath”, which encompasses STS9 both in the studio recording the tune and beside the coastline.The band shared their thoughts on “Life’s Sweet Breath” via a statement posted on their Facebook. STS9 explains,‘Life’s Sweet Breath’ is a song about the people we love and the bittersweet mystery of being alive. We recorded it to pay tribute to our brothers Kofi Burbridge and James Dahl who we miss dearly.Watch STS9’s new “Life’s Sweet Breath” video below:STS9 – “Life’s Sweet Breath”[Video: STS9]The band recently announced an upcoming three-night Colorado run dubbed STS9 Presents: Push The Sky. STS9 will open up the run with a warm-up all-improvisational Wave Spell Experience at Denver’s Paramount Theatre on Thursday, September 5th. The quintet will then head to Morrison, CO’s Red Rocks Amphitheatre on Saturday and Sunday, September 6th and 7th for two headlining performances, each of which will feature three sets of STS9 music from past, present, and future.For a full list of the band’s upcoming tour dates and ticketing information, head to STS9’s website.
A Harvard-led team of researchers has demonstrated a new type of light beam that propagates without spreading outward, remaining very narrow and controlled along an unprecedented distance. This “needle beam,” as the team calls it, could greatly reduce signal loss for on-chip optical systems and may eventually assist the development of a more powerful class of microprocessors.Based at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) and the Laboratoire Interdisciplinaire Carnot de Bourgogne, at the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), in France, the applied physicists both characterized and created the needle beam. Their findings were published online Aug. 31 in the journal Physical Review Letters.The needle beam arises from a special class of quasiparticles called surface plasmons, which travel in tight confinement with a metal surface. The metallic stripes that carry these surface plasmons have the potential to replace standard copper electrical interconnects in microprocessors, enabling ultrafast on-chip communications.One of the fundamental problems that has so far hindered the development of such optical interconnects is the fact that all waves naturally spread laterally during propagation, a phenomenon known as diffraction. Diffraction reduces the portion of the signal that can actually be detected.“We have made a major step toward solving this problem by discovering and experimentally confirming the existence of a previously overlooked solution of Maxwell’s equations that govern all light phenomena,” says principal investigator Federico Capasso, Robert L. Wallace Professor of Applied Physics and Vinton Hayes Senior Research Fellow in Electrical Engineering at SEAS. “The solution is a highly localized surface plasmon wave that propagates for a long distance, approximately 80 microns in our experiments, in a straight line without any diffraction.”Researchers demonstrated a cosine-Gauss plasmon beam, dubbed a “needle beam,” that propagates without diffraction. The advance may assist the development of ultrafast, energy-efficient microprocessors. Image courtesy of Patrice GenevetThe needle beam, technically a cosine-Gauss plasmon beam, propagates in tight confinement with a nanostructured metal surface. Lead author Jiao Lin, a visiting postdoctoral fellow at SEAS from the Singapore Institute of Manufacturing and Technology, and co-author Patrice Genevet, a research associate in Capasso’s group, found an ingenious way to demonstrate the theorized phenomenon. They sculpted two sets of grooves into a gold film that was plated onto the surface of a glass sheet. These tiny grooves intersect at an angle to form a metallic grating. When illuminated by a laser, the device launches two tilted, plane surface waves that interfere constructively to create the nondiffracting beam.“Our French colleagues did a beautiful experiment, using an ultra-high-resolution microscope to image the needle-shaped beam propagating for a long distance across the gold surface,” says Genevet.Capasso’s team hopes the finding will assist the development of more energy-efficient and powerful microprocessors.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Evacuations have been ordered in wildfire burn areas prone to mudslides as an atmospheric river storm pumped drenching rains into Southern California, while blizzard conditions buried the Sierra Nevada in snow. The storm took aim Thursday like a massive firehose at the central coast, where total rainfall over two days neared 14 inches in San Luis Obispo County. Across the state in the Eastern Sierra, Mammoth Mountain ski resort reported more than 7 feet of new snow on its summit, and blizzard warnings persist along both sides of the California-Nevada border.
Show Closed This production ended its run on Aug. 7, 2016 New York Spring Spectacular Derek Hough, whose role of Jack was played by understudy Taylor Frey on April 22, has had to withdraw from more performances of New York Spring Spectacular. As previously reported, the five-time Dancing with the Stars winner sustained an injury during rehearsals for the TV show’s 10th Anniversary special.A spokesperson for Hough said in a statement: “He has been diagnosed with a broken toe on his right foot and sprains to his left ankle on both the inside and outside aspects and a bone bruise on the same ankle. Derek will remain in Los Angeles this week to rehab his injuries and his understudy will be filling in for him for New York Spring Spectacular at Radio City Music Hall in New York.”Directed and choreographed by Warren Carlyle, with Diane Paulus and Randy Weiner as co-creative directors, the show is penned by Joshua Harmon. The new production featuring the iconic dance troupe is a whirlwind adventure across the Big Apple that tells an inspiring and hopeful story about three New Yorkers who change each other’s lives in unexpectedly wonderful ways. Spring Spectacular contains 3D special effects, large-scale puppetry and a soundtrack of original songs, classics and pop hits.Spring Spectacular also stars Tony winner Laura Benanti and recently extended through May 7 at Radio City Music Hall. View Comments Related Shows
SNL Data Dispatch: U.S. Coal Companies Tightening Supply in Face of Bankruptcies FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享By Taylor Kuykendall and Arsalan Gul in SNL:The latest coal miner employment and production data indicates producers took huge steps towards a long-sought and much-needed tightening of domestic coal supply with those undergoing restructuring cutting the most production.A coal supply overhang across the U.S. has kept a lid on prices as demand has rapidly dropped off due to natural gas competition, environmental regulation and mild weather patterns decreasing electricity demand. The state of the market has been particularly troublesome for the debt-laden companies now going through bankruptcy reorganization due to unrealized expectations on global metallurgical coal demand.A new S&P Global Market Intelligence analysis of production data shows that some of the nation’s top producers have accelerated their own efforts in supply rationalization in the past few quarters. Three companies that own some of the largest mines in the nation – Peabody Energy Corp., Arch Coal Inc. and Alpha Natural Resources Inc. — have also brought the largest amount of coal offline, on a quarterly basis, since the fuel’s near-term production peak in the fourth-quarter of 2011. All three companies are currently going through bankruptcy reorganization.Environmentalists and other activists have been highly critical of coal companies in bankruptcy. In a recent report, Public Citizens called on CEOs of bankrupt coal companies to divert bonuses they have received toward laid-off coal workers affected by declining production. They claim it is bad business decisions on management’s part that have landed the companies in their current position.“It is unfortunate that the political discourse has been framed by this fictitious ‘war on coal’ narrative, when the truth reveals an industry hampered largely by market forces and poor financial decisions,” said Tyson Slocum, director of Public Citizen’s Energy Program. “We need an honest dialogue about the future of our energy system and how to prioritize investing in coal mining communities that have been hurt by the transition.”The data analysis groups mines by current ownership, therefore production cuts over the period at mines that were bought and sold are attributed to the current owner.Mines currently owned by Peabody have cut 21.8 million tons of coal output between the 2011 near-term national peak in coal production and the first quarter of 2016, about 40.1% lower. Peabody recently secured approval for its debtor-in-possession financing as it prepares to readjust to current market conditions.“This marks another important step as we move through the Chapter 11 process and reposition the company for long-term success,” Peabody President and CEO Glenn Kellow said in a recent press release.Respectively, Arch and Alpha mines produced 17.1 million tons and 13.4 million tons fewer in the most recent quarter than the near-term nationwide peak in coal production.Companies that have not filed bankruptcy are also responding to a market signal to cut back on production. Cloud Peak Energy Inc. mines produced about 49.2% less coal in the first three months of 2016 than it did when U.S. quarterly coal production peaked. Peter Kiewit Sons’ Inc. produced about 66.3% less coal in the period.“We’re currently a non-profit,” Cloud Peak President and CEO joked at a recent hearing on potential reforms to the federal leasing process. In remarks in opposition to potential reforms that could make it more difficult or expensive to mine on federal lands, a large piece of Cloud Peak’s business, Marshall emphasized that coal is already in a tight spot.“With most federal coal producers bankrupt, coal prices at historic lows and taxes and fees on Powder River Basin coal alone at over 40% of the selling price there is no economic justification whatsoever to increase royalties or lease rates,” Marshall said. “To put this in context, last year Cloud Peak Energy paid $303 million in taxes and royalties when our business suffered a net loss of $204 million.”Other companies that currently own mines where there have been major supply cuts include Murray Energy Corp.,Virginia Conservation Legacy Fund Inc., Rosebud Mining Co., Revelation Energy Holdings LLC, Texas Energy Future Holdings and Westmoreland Coal Co.Full article $: https://www.snl.com/web/client?auth=inherit#news/article?id=36514802&KeyProductLinkType=4
by: Cade MetzAfter unveiling its new credit-card reader at Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference in San Francisco earlier this month, Square tested this newfangled contraption at a Blue Bottle coffee shop in Mint Plaza, just down the street.The reader doesn’t accept ordinary credit cards. It takes a newer breed of card equipped with an EMV chip for greater security, and it accepts Apple Pay, that much-hyped means of making card payments via the iPhone or the fledgling Apple Watch. With so many Apple faithful descending on the nearby Moscone Center for WWDC—the centerpiece of Apple’s year—Blue Bottle provided an unusually ripe proving ground for the new reader and the larger push towards Apple Pay and other “contactless” payments systems.According to Jesse Dorogusker, who oversaw the creation of the new reader as Square’s head of hardware, the tests revealed some “weird” behavior among those paying for some mighty good coffee with their personal Apple gadgets. Some people touched their wrists to the reader with their Apple Watches facing up, before realizing that the Watch doesn’t send a payment unless it’s facing down. “I’ve seen it,” Dorogusker says, shrugging his shoulders. “The new ritual is something we have to fine tune.” And sometimes, when they positioned their phones and Watches in the correct way and a payment went through flawlessly, they’re weren’t quite sure that it had. By the time they looked at their phone or watch display, he says, the notification saying they had paid successfully was already gone. “You have to adapt to the experience being too fast.”The Blue Bottle trial run was hardly a widespread test—Square kept its reader in the shop for only a week—and it may say more about the Apple Watch than Apple Pay. But it provides a nice metaphor for contactless mobile payments as a whole. Apple Pay and its ilk will take some getting used to. As Dorogusker says: “Changing buyer behavior is hard.” continue reading » ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr
The Financial CHOICE Act gives Congress an opportunity to provide credit unions with relief from the regulatory scrutiny of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), Diana Dykstra, president/CEO of the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues wrote in an opinion-editorial published in the East Bay Times. The additional regulatory burden created by the CFPB is an unintended consequence of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act, Dykstra wrote. “Congress was not wrong to establish the CFPB,” Dykstra wrote. “However, it is time to talk about why credit unions–which provide affordable savings and credit to 110 million account holders across the U.S., including 10.9 million of them in California–need relief from this agency.” Dykstra explained that while the bureau was created to protect the consumers from unscrupulous lenders, it has instead adopted a one-size-fits-all approach that negatively impacts community lenders. She provided several examples of how the CFPB has created processes created circumstances that run counter to its mission. For example, a CFPB rule requires a complicated hour-long procedure to wire money, a process that previously took 15 minutes. The bureau exempted financial institutions that handle less than 100 transfers per year. continue reading » 19SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr
1. Physical cards are here to stay… for nowAs U.S. spending shifts online and mobile payments proliferates, there may be concern among credit unions about the future of physical cards. However, physical cards will remain a central part of the payments experience. There are numerous reasons including the complexity of the POS infrastructure and challenges presented when creating a seamless experience regardless of the form the member prefers. However, in areas where contactless cards frequently use the response is overwhelmingly positive. We don’t know when the tipping point will come in terms of mobile payments, so for the coming years, it will be critical to providing your members frictionless ways to pay, whether that be with a card, mobile device or a computer.2. Security must continue to be top priorityWith EMV well underway, there have been significant reductions in counterfeit fraud at POS, and these reductions will continue as the rollout is completed. As the POS channel is further secured, credit unions should proactively address their weaknesses in security. Living in a digital world means that fraud is expected to shift to online channels, by employing solutions like tokenization your credit union can reduce the risk presented by fraudsters. Credit unions must take advantage of advancements in machine learning, artificial intelligence, and biometrics to improve their ability to combat these emerging threats. To reduce fraud, credit unions should also help put their members in control and provide their members with tools to control activity on their account and to monitor spend in real-time (e.g., text alerts).3. A digital payments roadmap cannot be staticAlthough a high percentage of purchases are still made using a card at a physical POS, almost all growth is coming from the online and mobile channels. All consumer segments are increasingly shopping online. When it comes to mobile millennials, in part due to their higher degree of comfort with mobile devices, are the earliest adopters. But usage is quickly expanding to other segments there as well. Being able to participate in digital wallets and establishing strong top-of-wallet strategies will be key. Given the dynamic nature of the space, it will be critical for credit unions to continually reevaluate their approach to ensure they have the right capabilities.4. Member service must also go digitalCredit unions have long been successful by providing unparalleled service to their consumers. As consumer preferences are changing, it is critical to expand service options accordingly. Online, and increasingly with mobile, banking has become the most vital touchpoint in a financial institution’s relationship with its members.As such, credit unions must have in place an online and mobile banking approach to manage their accounts through the channels they want to use. For example:61% of users noted online banking capabilities as a reason for staying at a current financial institution (compared to 37% for low cost or fees)Consumer expectations of what they can do through their mobile banking continue to increase.Consumers have quickly adopted text alerts for card purchases – which improves spend tracking, fraud identification, and provides a frequent source of member engagement 5. Invest in the next generation of credit union talentIn this rapidly evolving digital world, credit union leaders need to be thinking about long-term growth and success in their own organizations and their future leaders. They must take steps to attract the next generation of leaders within credit unions. Many industries are grappling with changing demographics, and credit unions are no exception. Credit unions face challenges with engaging, retaining and recruiting top young talent. New talent is essential to the success of the credit union movement. Young talent and millennials contribute energy, creativity and leadership to the businesses. An example of work being done to attract this talent is Visa’s initiative with Filene – one of the most credible industry think tanks help find ways through networking opportunities and access to credit union senior leaders to support and attract young professionals into the industry, then to improve retention through mentorship programs. To ensure the future success of the credit union industry, investments in talent will be critical to ensuring new products and services are relevant to a new generation of members. 225SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Neil Mumm Neil Mum is the currently Visa’s Head of Strategy, North America. Neil has over 15 years of experience in retail banking and payments, and has been with Visa since … Web: https://usa.visa.com Details
It’s that wonderful time of year when everyone is thinking romance. And nothing says romance like credit union talk! Of course, we thought it would be good to publish our best ideas of how to show your members you love them!So, if you are in a romantic mood and thinking about your money, then this blog is for you.1. No fee dayHey, why not? Everyone who calls in or might have gotten charged a fee today, let’s just waive them or not run the job schedule. What a great way to show some appreciation and get some free publicity!Instead of paying that crappy overdraft fee, they can share some ramen with their sweetie—courtesy of the credit union. 8SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading »