California dreaming

first_imgJim Riedenauer, owner of bakery-café Eddie’s, enjoys a dream lifestyle. He spends most of his day indulging a passion for decorating beautiful wedding cakes, when not enjoying spending time with his young family or out and about in the Californian sun.Riedenauer, you see, is a very smart man. He’s built his inherited bakery business on the back of a reputation for quality ? with a minimum of stress and wasted energy. His secret lies in having the common sense to invest and innovate in the areas where margins are highest.The one-shop bakery business in Fresno, California, started by Riedenauer’s father Eddie in 1939, has adapted its offer to include premium bakery lines, a wedding cakes business and a café over recent years. Sales are now booming at the downtown outlet.The bakery specialises in cakes made to order, from ornate wedding cakes to more modern numbers festooned with pink chocolate swirls. Flavours range from dark chocolate to vanilla, with carrot and banana popular choices. The most expensive, with custom fillings, sugarpaste flowers and rolled fondant creation, costs $1,475, feeding up to 350 guests. Generally, cakes are priced at $2-$4 a portion.The company makes up to 20 wedding cakes a week, depending on the season, July to October being the busiest periods. The fanciest cakes are on display in its showroom at the downtown outlet. Riedenauer says he is embracing innovation in his business, as cakes can now be decorated by computer.Eddie’s also now has a café attached ? a response, says Riedenauer, to people’s changing shopping habits. It offers a lunch menu from 11am-2pm, which makes for “a very efficient quick turnaround”, and serves around 150 covers daily. A wide range of daily lunch specials are offered at the café, from clam chowder in a bread bowl to chicken pot pie with side salad; plus meatloaf, Asian coleslaw or macaroni salad.The café area has a wood-fired oven, which is used to make pizzas, and “impress customers” as Riedenauer candidly puts it.Earlier in the day, there is a breakfast menu including croissants or Granola cereal. And towards the afternoon, the café does a roaring trade in lines such as fresh fruit tarts, individual pastries, cheesecakes and chocolate mousse.Overall, the café accounts for 15% of turnover ? “a nice balance”, according to Riedenauer – but has a “symbiotic relationship” with the adjoining bakery, driving footfall.The bakery employs between 13 and 24 staff, depending on demand. These include four full-time bakers, two helpers, five in the cakes department, three chefs and 12 salespeople.Bread accounts for a small percentage of sales. Sourdough breads are the biggest sellers – this is California after all ? while spiral rye breads with dark and light ryes mixed together are also popular. Ever the realist, Riedenauer admits to using bakery mixes in the bakery. “I like good mixes; they can taste better than if I make them from scratch,” he says.Riedenauer knows how to keep his priorities straight – always go by what the customer wants. His father Eddie would surely be proud of his success. nlast_img read more

Guidance: Supported living services during coronavirus (COVID-19)

first_imgThis guidance sets out: The visiting section of this guidance has been updated in line with the government’s roadmap. The updates clarify visiting arrangements and highlight how lateral flow testing for people being supported and visitors can aid visits in and out of the accommodation. key messages to assist with planning and preparation in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic so that local procedures can be put in place to minimise risk and provide the best possible support to people in supported living settings safe systems of working including, social distancing, respiratory and hand hygiene and enhanced cleaning how infection prevention and control (IPC) and personal protective equipment (PPE) applies to supported living settingscenter_img The easy read version is under review. Refer to the main guidance for the latest advice.last_img read more

Foundation Of Funk Announces Late-Night Show During Jazz Fest With Oteil Burbridge

first_imgLed by founding Meters members Zigaboo Modeliste and George Porter Jr., Foundation of Funk has announced a late-night performance during the second weekend of Jazz Fest, set to take place at New Orleans’ Fillmore on Wednesday, May 1st. The newly announced show comes on the heels of Foundations of Funk’s official New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival lineup announcement.Along with Porter Jr. and Modeliste, Foundation of Funk’s New Orleans performance will feature Dead & Company bassist Oteil Burbridge, as well as a trio of Dumpstaphunk members, including keyboardist Ivan Neville, guitarist Ian Neville, and guitarist Tony Hall, plus some “very special guests.”Tickets for the Foundation of Funk Fillmore show go on sale this Friday, February 1st at 10 a.m. (CST) here, with a pre-sale beginning this Wednesday, January 30th at 10 a.m. (CST) here.last_img read more

Aldy to chair M-RCBG program

first_imgJoseph Aldy, assistant professor of public policy at Harvard Kennedy School, has been named faculty chair of the Regulatory Policy Program at the Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government (M-RCBG).Aldy’s research focuses on climate change policy, energy policy, and mortality risk valuation. In 2009-10, he served as the special assistant to the president for energy and environment, reporting through both the National Economic Council and the Office of Energy and Climate Change at the White House.“The Regulatory Policy Program will serve as the hub of regulation-related research activities at the Harvard Kennedy School and will engage scholars across the University to identify the most effective ways to design, implement, and evaluate regulatory policy,” explained Aldy.last_img read more

Horizontal helper

first_img Creation of big data tool leads to new ideas on form and function of insect eggs “But the one thing that has always been mysterious about oskar is where did it come from,” Extavour said. “For many decades, it was only found in fruit flies, then it was found in a couple mosquitos and a wasp. We found it in crickets a few years ago, and since then we’ve found a number of additional examples, but they’re all insects.“And when we look at the sequence of the gene, it just doesn’t look like anything around,” she continued. “But if we look closely, there are two domains that look like domains we see in other organisms. One is called the LOTUS domain and the other is called OSK — short for oskar. The LOTUS domain looks like something people have found in many other eukaryotic proteins, but the thing that OSK is most similar to is not a sequence from any animal or eukaryote, but to bacterial sequences.”Could it be, Extavour wondered, that those two separate parts of a single protein were actually co-opted from two different sources?“I thought, ‘If that’s true, then, because we don’t think animals and bacteria reproduce with each other, that would have to occur through horizontal gene transfer,’” she said.Finding evidence for that, however, proved frustratingly tricky.Extavour first suggested the idea to a graduate student in 2008, but he quickly realized the project would be a lot to tackle, since the analysis would require collecting all the sequences that might be related to oskar, and then using statistics to break down whether and how they are related.“The problem is that oskar evolves faster than the average gene,” Extavour said. “That means it’s hard to unambiguously identify the sequences that may be oskar’s relatives because they’re changing so fast.”The project was picked up several years later by another grad student, Extavour said, who suggested that instead of searching for genes whose entire sequence appeared related to oskar, she search for genes that had sequences similar to either the LOTUS or OSK domains.“She was able to identify about 100 new possible relatives from other insects that we hadn’t known had oskar before,” Extavour said.Again, though, the project stalled as the student realized it would be too large to take on while she completed her degree. New view of germ cells Related In science, as in life, timing can be everything.So it was when Cassandra Extavour, Professor of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology and of Molecular and Cellular Biology, set out to understand whether horizontal gene transfer — the process of passing genes between organisms without sexual reproduction — might be responsible for part of the makeup of a gene, known as oskar, that plays a critical role in the creation of germ cells in some insects.Over the last decade, Extavour pitched the project to graduate students more than 10 times. They would investigate the idea but, ultimately, decide it was too complex and unwieldy. Enter Leo Blondel.As a first-year graduate student in the Molecules, Cells, and Organisms (MCO) program, in which students complete rotations in various labs before selecting one to join, Blondel was able to provide the strongest suggestive evidence yet that at least part of oskar actually came from bacterial genomes. The findings are described in a paper published in the journal eLife.“I think this definitely moves the ball forward from where it was before, which was basically that we had no clue, and [our finding] basically says here are these lines of evidence for something that seems very likely,” Blondel said. “And it definitely improves the understanding of this particular gene. This particular gene appears out of nowhere in evolution and in only 480 million years becomes one of the most essential genes in the reproduction of insects, and the question was always: Where does it come from?”To answer that question, Blondel performed a phylogenetic analysis — long the gold standard in proving horizontal gene transfer — and the results showed part of oskar’s sequence in insects is actually most closely related to a sequence found in bacteria.It’s a finding that sheds new light on a gene that has long fascinated biologists.“This gene is really interesting to people who work on germ cells because the phenotype if you have a mutation in this gene is that you have no germ cells,” Extavour said. “It was first identified in fruit flies, where it’s expressed in one corner of the embryo, which is where the germ cells form.”Later studies revealed that oskar was sufficient by itself to produce functional germ cells, a feat that, even today, no other gene has demonstrated. “One of the most important messages of the paper is to say maybe it’s time to look at things differently, because there may be something we’re completely missing that could change our understanding of biology.” — Leo Blondel Extavour later brought the project to Blondel, who remembers being intrigued, but not surprised by the idea.“To me, there was already enough evidence to start forming a hypothesis that this might be the case,” he said. “It needed a lot more work, but the idea was there. But the one thing I said to her was that I had no idea how to prove it.”Nevertheless, Blondel went to work and was able to add another 50 possible relatives to the list before creating a phylogenetic analysis, and the results showed that while the LOTUS domain is likely related to a similar sequence found in other animal proteins, the OSK domain is likely related to bacterial sequences.The analysis didn’t end there. Blondel also found evidence that the insect and bacterial sequences have the same genetic “accent.”That accent, Extavour said, has to do with how the bacterial and the insect genes use codons — three-base segments of DNA that code for a particular amino acid.But much like a spoken accent, that codon-use signature can fade over time, and given the age of the oskar gene — scientists believe it to be approximately 500 million years old — Extavour said she and Blondel didn’t expect to detect much, if any, of that signature.Still, the pair measured codon use in oskar four different ways, and while three turned up no evidence of differences, one did suggest that the OSK domain is different than the rest of the gene.Extavour and Blondel were even able to come up with a hypothesis about where the foreign OSK sequence may have come from.“We noticed that many of the sequences that appear to be closely related to the OSK domain came from bacteria that are sometimes endosymbionts — bacteria that live inside insects,” Extavour said. “There are many insect endosymbionts that don’t just live inside the animal, they live in the cytoplasm of the cells … and not just any cells, but germ cells.“One of the best-studied insect endosymbionts is called Wolbachia, which lives inside the cytoplasm of germ cells, and some of the best-documented examples of horizontal gene transfer from bacteria to an insect have been from Wolbachia,” she continued. “So if you are living inside the cell that contains the DNA that is going to go into the next generation, maybe some of your DNA can make it into that germ cell nucleus and now you’re contributing to the next generation’s genome.”While the paper offers important insights into a gene that is critical for insect reproduction, Blondel hopes it may offer other biologists a new approach to finding similar insights in other genes.“This paper is the best evidence we can gather that this is the most likely scenario, but we can’t prove it in the sense that this is something that happened at least 450 million years ago,” he said. “But to me, one of the most important messages of the paper is to say maybe it’s time to look at things differently, because there may be something we’re completely missing that could change our understanding of biology. There are no tools scanning for this right now — no one is looking at the domain granularity in genes.”This research was supported with funding from Harvard University.center_img Can more easily correct disease-causing mutations ranging from cancer to blindness Debunking old hypotheses Research offers insights beyond maternal inheritance Capabilities of CRISPR gene editing expandedlast_img read more

Standing on their shoulders

first_imgFor much of Harvard College’s nearly 400-year history, it was composed of wealthy, white men. Yet from the College’s founding, women and their contributions can be seen in all corners of the institution.Starting today, a new student-created and -led virtual tour, offered through the Harvard Visitor Center, explores those contributions, and how they helped shape the College into the University it now is.The tour examines many aspects of the history of women at Harvard. From notable poets such as Anne Dudley Bradstreet and Phillis Wheatley, who influenced Harvard’s students through their creative contributions, to artists such as Sarah Wyman Whitman, who designed various aspects of the campus, to others who donated money, physical material, and even buildings, women’s fingerprints can be found all across the University.“Some of the most iconic buildings at Harvard were donated by women on behalf of men,” according to the tour. “Due to the societal constructs of their times, one of the only means women could use to care for and enlarge their own status was by supporting the reputations of men.”,One example of this is Sever Hall, designed by H.H. Richardson in 1878 and donated by Anne Sever in honor of her late husband, James Warren Sever, Class of 1817. Another, perhaps more widely known is Widener Library, the oldest library system in the U.S. and the world’s largest academic library. It was donated by Eleanor Elkins Widener in memory of her son Harry Elkins Widener, Class of 1907, who drowned with his father aboard the Titanic.The tour, which is full of historic anecdotes and modern stories, is the brainchild of Fari Mbaye, Madi Fabber, and Maggie Dawson, manager of the Visitor Center, which organizes and runs the tours.The juniors worked closely with Dawson when they led historical tours of campus. The tours touched on women’s contributions to the University, but Mbaye, Fabber, and Dawson realized that the sheer magnitude of the women’s work could fill its own specialty tour. They jumped at the chance to create the new tour and share their research with the greater Harvard community and the general public.“There is just so, so much to talk about regarding women’s contributions, and so many people to learn about. It’s become something that is really near and dear to us, and it’s information that we really wanted to share with everyone else, because it’s a subject that is so often ignored,” said Mbaye.,Women began studying with Harvard professors and working in biology and botany labs on campus as early as the 1820s. But, Mbaye and Fabber explained, they were still denied admission to the College and graduate Schools. By the middle of the 19th century, women could participate in lectures and even take examinations (such as modern-day SATs), but could gain only a certificate if they passed, not admission.In the late 1800s, small groups of women were offered some Harvard courses taught by Harvard professors. The organization became known as the Harvard Annex, which years later would become Radcliffe College, and would operate separately from Harvard.The tour relates how some Harvard professors were warned against the “dangers” of teaching at Radcliffe, because its students didn’t offer the “mental resistance” necessary to keep professors’ minds sharp. It also profiles notable female professors in various Schools throughout the University’s history and looks at when, and how, men’s and women’s classrooms integrated, campus spaces such as libraries became co-educational, and most dramatically, dorms began to integrate.Fabber said she was surprised by the way integration evolved at Harvard. “We always mention it on the historical tour, and the information is always presented as, ‘Oh they switched. They integrated,’” she said. “But then when we started doing research and began writing the women’s tours, I realized just how many accounts there were from these women who were the first to make the switch, and all the harassment they encountered in order to do this, and start this process of merging colleges and creating a more equal playing field. It was very interesting, very eye-opening.”Mbaye agreed. “In the historical tour, we simply mention that Radcliffe was founded,” she said. “But there is so much more — the process of how it was founded, and the difficulties people faced, and just how difficult it was for women to get an education.”Just 21 years ago, in 1999, Radcliffe and Harvard College officially merged, and women too were able to graduate with a Harvard College degree. Since that time, Harvard has been steadily expanding gender equity on campus, and working to raise awareness of women’s and gender issues. The tour examines newer courses and concentrations, including the Studies of Women, Gender and Sexuality (WGS).,“Harvard has made large strides,” the tour says, and “while it is important to acknowledge this progress … the University remains committed to addressing issues of gender equity that may persist for its students, faculty and staff — be it in the classroom, on the playing field, or in professional careers.”In closing, the tour quotes Drew Faust, the founding dean of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study and the first woman president of Harvard, about why it’s important to continue to advance gender equity in education at Harvard, and around the world.In a speech she gave in 2013, she said, “We educate women, first, because it is fair — a level field as we aspire to include women as full and equal participants in society. We educate women also because it is smart — women are one-half of our human resources, and we increasingly see the beneficial effects of educated women in all realms of life and in all parts of the world. Finally, we educate women because it is transformative. Education doesn’t just boost incomes and economies, it elevates us, defusing differences, opening common ground, and making the most of all our human capacities.”The tour’s examination of Harvard’s pioneering women, and the steps they took, big and small, reveal remarkable stories about those who paved the way for future generations.“It has been absolutely remarkable to work with Madi and Fari, and to see the process unfold from start to finish. They both really took the idea and ran with it — together we conducted research, wrote the script, found the amazing historical photos, and put it all together. The results were illuminating, insightful and full of remarkable historical nuggets we can’t wait to share,” said Dawson.The free virtual tours are offered weekly. To register, please visit A preview can be seen here.last_img read more

U.S. coal companies increasingly worried administration policies will hurt exports

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Reuters:U.S. coal mining companies are worried President Donald Trump’s intensifying trade dispute with China could hurt their booming export business, one of the ailing sector’s most important lifelines, according to industry players.Beijing this month added coal and other energy products to a list of U.S. goods facing import tariffs in retaliation for Trump administration levies. The measure has already dampened Chinese demand for U.S.-mined coal, multiple U.S. and Chinese industry sources said.For instance, trade sources said China National Building Material International, one of the biggest metallurgical coal importers in China, pulled back from supply talks with U.S. coal broker XCoal and miner Consol Energy shortly after Beijing’s announcement. A source familiar with the matter said Consol had been in talks with China to supply up to 1 million tons per year of metallurgical coal but would not confirm whether the deal would be delayed. Officials at XCoal declined to comment.The U.S. Energy Information Administration said U.S. coal exports to Asia doubled from 15.7 million tons in 2016 to 32.8 million tons in 2017. Exports to China totaled 3.2 million tons in 2017, up from zero in 2015 and 2016, according to the EIA.The coal industry’s concerns mirror the unease spreading in U.S. farm country over unintended consequences of the Trump administration’s protectionist stance, which has roiled foreign market for American crops. The farm and coal industries are critical Trump supporters that the president and his Republican party are relying on to help them retain control of Congress in the mid-term elections in November.More: U.S. coal miners worry Trump-China trade dispute could hit exports U.S. coal companies increasingly worried administration policies will hurt exportslast_img read more

CFPB cracks down on FCRA violations

first_imgLast month, the CFPB fined JPMorgan Chase (JPMorgan) $4.6 million for various alleged violations of the FCRA. According to the consent order, the CFPB found that JPMorgan failed to have reasonable policies and procedures in place to ensure it provided accurate information to consumer reporting agencies, failed to inform consumers of the results of dispute investigations and failed to identify the consumer reporting agency on adverse action notices.Policies and Procedures. The FCRA does not require financial institutions to provide information to consumer reporting agencies. However, if a financial institution elects to do so, the FCRA requires it to provide accurate information. Regulation V requires these financial institutions to have reasonable policies and procedures in place to ensure that information provided to consumer reporting agencies is accurate. The procedures should be designed based on the institution’s complexity and scope of activities and updated periodically. The rule also requires institutions to consider the interagency guidelines in developing their policies. continue reading » 46SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Family, finances, health, career, community, and faith

first_imgYou have a list of things that are important to you.Usually, those center around your family, finances, health, career, community, and faith. That “power six” grouping usually covers what is most near and dear to our heart. To improve in these areas, it will take some work. You’ll need to read. You’ll to reflect. You’ll need to plan. You’ll need to act. Now, do an audit. Look at your life’s inputs. Look at what you consume. Look at where you spend your time.Television shows. Radio. People. Ideas. Social media. Time. Books. Magazines. Conversations. Exercise. Food.Some of those inputs empower and improve the “power six” noted above. Some of your inputs will not. They take up time, attention and effort, but don’t move the ball down the field. They are noise. And nothing else. This week, I’ll try to limit the noise and focus on what matters. I find that when I do, my world gets better faster.Feel free to join me. 22SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Anthony Demangone Anthony Demangone is executive vice president and chief operating officer at the National Association of Federal Credit Unions (NAFCU). Demangone oversees day-to-day operations and manages the association’s education, membership, … Web: Detailslast_img read more

Outbreak breakout: COVID-19 patient flees isolation ward in Jakarta

first_imgA COVID-19 patient who was receiving treatment in the isolation ward of Persahabatan General Hospital (RSUP) in East Jakarta has reportedly escaped the facility with the help of family members.According to Erlina Burhan, the hospital’s spokesperson for matters related to COVID-19, the patient was able to slip away while medical workers were busy.”[The patient] left through the front door, where her family members were already waiting to help her flee,” Erlina told a press conference at the hospital on Friday afternoon.  Read also: Coronavirus pandemic ‘could be over by June’ if countries act, says Chinese adviserThe facility is currently treating five COVID-19 patients and eleven others who are under observation for showing symptoms, reported.Separately, Jakarta administration official Suharti said the patient decided to leave the hospital because she did not trust the test result diagnosing her as positive for COVID-19. She also demanded proof of her infection, she added.”The patient claimed that she had shown no symptoms of COVID-19. So, she decided to run because she was afraid of eventually being transferred to a facility [for positive patients],” Suharti said, adding that all COVID-19 patients at the hospital were kept in the same room. She added that the patient also had financial concerns.”[The patient’s] family is poor and they have children to feed.”Suharti spoke during a recent meeting with Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan on the capital’s measures to combat COVID-19. The meeting was recorded and can be watched on the Jakarta administration’s official YouTube channel. Indonesia has so far recorded 69 confirmed COVID-19 cases. Four patients have died during isolation.However, the figures are believed to be far below the country’s actual number of infections, with many fearing that cases have gone undetected because of the government’s inadequate handling of the health crisis.Concerns also remain as to whether tests run by the Health Ministry’s laboratory are accurate.At least five people suspected of having the virus have died since late February before authorities eventually announced the first two confirmed cases last week. Some of the suspected patients died while waiting for their test results, although all of their tests eventually came back negative.In one case, a health official reportedly confirmed the possibility of flawed results from lab tests. (vny)Topics :last_img read more