Singapore researchers control Venus flytraps using smartphones

SINGAPORE  Researchers in Singapore have found a way of controlling a Venus flytrap using electric signals from a smartphone, an innovation they hope will have a range of uses from robotics to employing the plants as environmental sensors. 

Luo Yifei, a researcher at Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University (NTU), showed in a demonstration how a signal from a smartphone app sent to tiny electrodes attached to the plant could make its trap close as it does when catching a fly. 

“Plants are like humans, they generate electric signals, like the ECG (electrocardiogram) from our hearts,” said Ms. Luo, who works at NTU’s School of Materials Science and Engineering. 

“We developed a non-invasive technology to detect these electric signals from the surface of plants without damaging them,” Ms. Luo said. 

The scientists have also detached the trap portion of the Venus flytrap and attached it to a robotic arm so it Read the rest

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Lee Drozak: WP Site Success

Lee Drozak operates WP Site Success, a WordPress-focused agency based in rural Pennsylvania. Catch up with Lee on Twitter and LinkedIn.

The who:

Given a business name is so central to a brand, we tend to put a lot of importance on it. How did you arrive at a name, and how do you feel about it now that you’ve been in business a while?

WP Site Success was born out of a need to let people know more about websites and WordPress. It’s about making your website key to your marketing and brand. That means the success to enjoy a website that works.

Lee Drozak Agency

Nailing the name that reflects the business’s mission was a key point moving forward because it encompasses and is the cornerstone of the messaging.

With some brands, location is a key component. Is there anything about the place you live and work that’s shaped Read the rest

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India’s seven-day COVID average at new high, WHO issues warning on strain

BENGALURU – India’s coronavirus crisis showed scant sign of easing on Tuesday, with a seven-day average of new cases at a record high and international heath authorities warning the country’s variant of the virus poses a global concern.

India’s daily coronavirus cases rose by 329,942, while deaths from the disease rose by 3,876, according to the health ministry. India’s total coronavirus infections are now at 22.99 million, while total fatalities rose to 249,992.

India leads the world in the daily average number of new deaths reported, accounting for one in every three deaths reported worldwide each day, according to a Reuters tally.

The seven-day average of new cases is at a record high of 390,995.

The World Health Organization said the coronavirus variant first identified in the country last year was being classified as a variant of global concern, with some preliminary studies showing that it spreads more easily.

“We … Read the rest

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When are business taxes due and how can you prepare now?

This article was originally published on Aug. 18, 2017, and was updated on Jan. 10, 2019, Jan. 15, 2020 and May 10, 2021. 

As the expression goes, “nothing is certain but death and taxes.” Everyone knows you have to pay the IRS when you earn an income, but not just individually. Companies, whether giant corporations or sole proprietorships, have to pay taxes — and they have to do it on time. So, when are business taxes due?

When you start a business, one of the things you will have to deal with is deadlines.

 

Your clients will not accept getting what they paid for whenever you get around to finishing it. You set expectations for when your client will receive your goods or services, and you deliver on time. If you don’t, you risk getting a reputation that you are difficult to deal with, and will likely leave your … Read the rest

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US expresses ‘serious concerns’ about Jerusalem clashes, evictions of Palestinians

WASHINGTON — US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan on Sunday expressed “serious concerns” to his Israeli counterpart about violent clashes in Jerusalem sparked by planned evictions of Palestinians from East Jerusalem, the White House said in a statement. 

Mr. Sullivan in a phone call with Israeli National Security Adviser Meir Ben-Shabbat “encouraged the Israeli government to pursue appropriate measures to ensure calm during Jerusalem Day commemorations.” 

New confrontations broke out between Palestinians and Israeli police in parts of East Jerusalem on Sunday, including in Sheikh Jarrah and outside the walled Old City, as well as in Haifa, a mixed Arab-Jewish city in northern Israel at the height of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. 

The clashes have been sparked by the planned evictions of several Palestinian families from the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in East Jerusalem, an area captured by Israel in a 1967 war. 

Israel’s attorney-general secured a deferment on Read the rest

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Making the most of Miami’s micro-business economy

For the last five years, Dan Grech has been teaching entrepreneurs in Miami how to use the internet to grow their businesses. His clients are as eclectic as the city itself, ranging from long-established restaurants and hip new bakeries in need of a digital presence to boost online orders to first-timers like 14-year-old Zoe Terry, who created Zoe’s Dolls to give dolls of color to other Black girls like herself.

“Miami ranks as a leader in new business startups, but near the bottom in scale-ups,” says Grech, the founder and CEO of BizHack Academy. “We’ve always attracted dreamers and strivers, but we don’t have the technology ecosystem of other places, so a lot of people don’t have 21st-century  skills for building new businesses. If we can close that gap, Miami will unleash a hurricane of innovation.”

Chart of microbusiness density in Miami

Therein lies the opportunity for Miami — and the challenge. The Miami metro area, … Read the rest

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Cyber attack shuts down U.S. fuel pipeline ‘jugular,’ Biden briefed

NEW YORK – Top U.S. fuel pipeline operator Colonial Pipeline shut its entire network, the source of nearly half of the U.S. East Coast’s fuel supply, after a cyber attack on Friday that involved ransomware.

The incident is one of the most disruptive digital ransom operations ever reported and has drawn attention to how vulnerable U.S. energy infrastructure is to hackers. A prolonged shutdown of the line would cause prices to spike at gasoline pumps ahead of peak summer driving season, a potential blow to U.S. consumers and the economy.

“This is as close as you can get to the jugular of infrastructure in the United States,” said Amy Myers Jaffe, research professor and managing director of the Climate Policy Lab. “It’s not a major pipeline. It’s the pipeline.”

Colonial transports 2.5 million barrels per day of gasoline, and other fuels through 5,500 miles (8,850 km) of pipelines linking refiners … Read the rest

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GoDaddy Q&A with fashion designer and Project Runway finalist Kelly Dempsey

Kelly Dempsey climbed the fashion ladder on season 14 of the hit show, “Project Runway.” The only self-taught designer that season, Kelly made it to the finale and showed off her fearless, unique style and creative approach to clothing. Show mentor Tim Gunn has even gone on record in a 2015 interview saying she had the best collection of the finalists. Her humor and realness, along with her nickname Kelly from the Deli, helped solidify her following. 

Following her success on Project Runway, she launched her business, Rack Addik. Her unique take on streetwear, filled with interesting blends of patterns and fabrics, stood out in a crowded space. She takes pride in her approach, always trying to incorporate thrift store finds to normalize used clothing and not contribute to the waste seen with fast fashion.

At the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, Kelly, a native Massachusettsan, shifted her business Read the rest

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Philippine COVID-infections hit 1.09M

The Department of Health (DoH) reported 7,733 coronavirus infections on Friday, bringing the total to 1.09 million.

The death toll rose by 108 to 18,099, while recoveries increased by 4,227 to over one million, it said in a bulletin.

There were 66,626 coronavirus infections,1.1{87890dc1d933c52ccc13a444df81fd446339ba2106dac001aae390a0afd706af} of which were critical, 94.4{87890dc1d933c52ccc13a444df81fd446339ba2106dac001aae390a0afd706af} were mild, 2{87890dc1d933c52ccc13a444df81fd446339ba2106dac001aae390a0afd706af} did not show symptoms, 1.5{87890dc1d933c52ccc13a444df81fd446339ba2106dac001aae390a0afd706af} were severe and 0.98{87890dc1d933c52ccc13a444df81fd446339ba2106dac001aae390a0afd706af} were moderate.

DoH said 20 duplicates had been removed from the tally, 14 of which were tagged as recoveries. It added that 64 recoveries were reclassified as deaths.

About 11.4 million Filipinos have been tested for the coronavirus as of May 5, according to DoH’s tracker website.

The coronavirus has sickened about 156.7 million and killed 3.3 million people worldwide, according to the Worldometers website, citing various sources including data from the World Health Organization.

About 134.1 million people have recovered, it said.

Meanwhile, the Health department in a … Read the rest

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Sheyne Branconnier: Smile MEDIA

Sheyne Branconnier operates Smile MEDIA, a full-service web design, development and marketing company with offices in Boston, Dover, NH and Exeter, NH. Catch up with him on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.

The who:

Given a business name is so central to a brand, we tend to put a lot of importance on it. How did you arrive at a name, and how do you feel about it now that you’ve been in business a while?

At our foundation we are a service company aimed to please. Our focus is on the one universal expression we are aiming for. A smile is one of the single universal expressions of happiness worldwide; it is used as a kind gesture when greeting someone and is sometimes an uncontrollable emotional response to an interaction.

That is why we have made it the core to our beliefs and our name.

It is … Read the rest

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