Google welcomes spring and fall with dual Doodles for the equinox

first_img Share your voice Tags Google Doodle Google One of Google’s equinox Doodles welcomes the new life that spring portends. Google Even if the weather doesn’t exactly feel like spring, the calendar — and Google’s Doodle — indicate that the changing of the seasons promises to bring warmer weather north of the equator.For those living north of globe’s belly line, Wednesday marks the first day of spring in the Northern Hemisphere. If you live south of the equator, it marks the first day of fall.It is, of course, the planet’s equinox (not to be confused with the solstice, which couldn’t be more different). The word “equinox” comes from the Latin for “equal” and “night.” Essentially, it’s the biannual event when the sun is directly over the equator.Regardless of which side of the planet you live, Google has got you covered with a Doodle that reflects the mood of the season ahead of you. Those welcoming spring in the north see the sprouting of new life from an anthropomorphic globe, perhaps astonished and optimistic about the warmer days and new life ahead.google-doodle-fall2019Meanwhile, those south of the Equator ready for colder, shorter days. Google Meanwhile, those witnessing the end of summer in the south see a Doodle featuring a brightly colored leaf resting on our now-tired globe, seemingly reminded of the fleeting warm days as it girds itself for shorter, colder days ahead.If you aren’t too keen on this situation, remember that you can count on things moving in the opposite direction in six months. Originally published March 19.Update, March 20: Adds links to Google’s spring and fall Doodles. 0 Online Post a commentlast_img read more

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Facebook is working on a rival to Amazons Alexa

first_img Share your voice Smart Speakers & Displays Tech Industry Now playing: Watch this: 0 Facebook Portal aims to take Messenger video chat up… Facebook is working on its own voice assistant. CNET Facebook is working on a voice assistant that could be used in its Portal video chat device.”We are working to develop voice and AI assistant technologies that may work across our family of AR/VR products including Portal, Oculus and future products,” a Facebook spokesperson said in a statement on Wednesday. The social network would face stiff competition from tech giants that already have voice assistants, like Amazon, Google and Apple. CNBC, citing several people familiar with the matter, said Facebook has been working on the new voice assistant since early 2018 but it’s “unclear how exactly Facebook envisions people using the assistant.” Facebook’s Portal currently taps into Amazon’s Alexa. Facebook employees in Redmond, Washington, led by Ira Snyder, director of AR/VR and Facebook Assistant, are reportedly leading the effort to build a new AI assistant.This isn’t the first time Facebook has tried to build a virtual assistant. Last year, the company shut down a chat assistant called M that was used in Facebook’s messaging app.  2:54 Post a comment Tags Facebook Originally published April 17, 11:54 a.m. PT.Update, 12:49 p.m. PT: Adds Facebook comment. last_img read more

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Confirmed Abhay Deol to play antagonist in Sivakarthikeyans HERO

first_imgAbhay Deol at Blackberry sharp nightVarinder ChawlaHandsome hunk Abhay Deol, who is popular for playing interesting roles in Bollywood, is all set to play a baddie, but not in a Bollywood film. Yes! The actor is all set to make his Tamil debut with actor Sivakarthikeyan’s upcoming film Hero, directed by PS Mithran.It was recently revealed that Abhay Deol has been roped in to play the antagonist in this film. The director confirmed it in an interview which he has given to a local news portal in Chennai. Production banner KJR Studios also tweeted recently, “Thrilled to have Bollywood stunner @AbhayDeol on board as the antagonist in @Siva_Karthikyen’s #HERO!…” (sic)Thrilled to have Bollywood stunner @AbhayDeol on board as the antagonist in @Siva_Kartikeyan’s #HERO! ? Excited about this fresh collaboration!@Psmithran @akarjunofficial @thisisysr @kalyanipriyan @george_dop @dhilipaction @ruben_editor @DoneChannel1 @gobeatroute pic.twitter.com/cqZizp6zFn— KJR Studios (@kjr_studios) July 19, 2019 TwitterThe director has revealed that he has been looking for an actor who has a smiling and charming face but who can still instil some terror in the audience. So that is when he thought of Abhay, who has been able to pull off such roles with ease.This film will have Kalyani Priyadarshan and Ivana playing the leading ladies of Sivakrthikeyan. Arjun, Vivek and Robo Shankar have also been roped in to play vital roles. Action King Arjun Sarja is also one of the lead actors of the film. RD Raja and KJR Studios are bankrolling this venture, while Geroge C Williams and Ruben are in charge of the film’s cinematography and editing.Touted to be an action thriller, fans have high expectations from this film as PS Mithran has made Irumbu Thirai, one of the popular hits from Tamil cinema in recent times. Yuvan Shankar Raja is going to compose music for this film.last_img read more

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Import duty hike From footwear to washing machine now pay more for

first_imgA worker arranges food packets inside a retail store in Kolkata.ReutersThe Finance Ministry has decided to hike import duties on 19 non-essential items that include imported ACs, refrigerators, washing machines and others in order to curb widening current account deficit (CAD) and a weakening rupee.The hike in import duties varies from five per cent to 25 per cent and changes in rates are effective from September 27 (Thursday). The aviation fuel attracted five per cent hike. The increase, however, is not expected to increase airfare.As per the revised import duty rate, footwear attracted five per cent hike. Hike imposed on AC, refrigerator, washing machine, household items of plastics (tableware and kitchenware), office stationery and others may see public spending a little money from now. Union Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley.ReutersIt needs to be noted that Finance Minister Arun Jaitley while announcing measures to increase capital inflows and check rupee volatility earlier this month, had said that an extensive policy had been made to cut non-essential imports and boost exports.The move comes against the backdrop of the CAD touching 2.4 percent in the June quarter. The import duty hike is part of one of this policy measures.Following are the 19 items that are slightly expensive from Thursday.ItemItemPresent rate (%)Present rate (%)Revised rate (%)Revised rate (%)ItemAir conditionersPresent rate (%)10Revised rate (%)20ItemHousehold refrigeratorsPresent rate (%)10Revised rate (%)20ItemWashing machines less than 10 KgPresent rate (%)10Revised rate (%)20ItemCompressor for air conditioners and refrigeratorsPresent rate (%)7.5Revised rate (%)10ItemSpeakersPresent rate (%)10Revised rate (%)15ItemFootwearPresent rate (%)20Revised rate (%)25ItemRadial Car TyresPresent rate (%)10Revised rate (%)15ItemNon-industrial diamond (other than rough diamonds), i.e., cut and polished diamondPresent rate (%)5Revised rate (%)7.5ItemDiamonds-semi processed, half cut or brokenPresent rate (%)5Revised rate (%)7.5ItemLab-grown diamondsPresent rate (%)5Revised rate (%)7.5ItemCut and polished Colored gemstonePresent rate (%)5Revised rate (%)7.5ItemArticles of jewellery and parts thereof, of precious metal or of metal clad with precious metalPresent rate (%)15Revised rate (%)20ItemArticles of Goldsmith or silversmith wares and parts thereof of precious metal or of metal clad with precious metalPresent rate (%)15Revised rate (%)20ItemBath, shower bath, sink, wash basin, etc. of plasticsPresent rate (%)10Revised rate (%)15ItemArticles of plastics for conveyance and packing such as boxes, case, containers, bottles, insulated ware etc.Present rate (%)10Revised rate (%)15ItemTableware, kitchenware and other household items of plasticsPresent rate (%)10Revised rate (%)15Itemoffice stationery, fitting for furniture’s, decorative sheets, statuettes, beads, bangles etc.Present rate (%)10Revised rate (%)15ItemTrunks, Suitcase, Executive cases, Brief Cases, travel bags and other bags etc.Present rate (%)10Revised rate (%)15ItemAviation turbine fuelPresent rate (%)0Revised rate (%)5 Washing machines less than 10 Kg1020 Diamonds-semi processed, half cut or broken57.5 Tableware, kitchenware and other household items of plastics1015 Non-industrial diamond (other than rough diamonds), i.e., cut and polished diamond57.5 office stationery, fitting for furniture’s, decorative sheets, statuettes, beads, bangles etc.1015 Radial Car Tyres1015 Articles of Goldsmith or silversmith wares and parts thereof of precious metal or of metal clad with precious metal1520 Trunks, Suitcase, Executive cases, Brief Cases, travel bags and other bags etc.1015 Speakers1015 Cut and polished Colored gemstone57.5 ItemPresent rate (%)Revised rate (%) Bath, shower bath, sink, wash basin, etc. of plastics1015 Articles of jewellery and parts thereof, of precious metal or of metal clad with precious metal1520 Air conditioners1020 Lab-grown diamonds57.5 Household refrigerators1020 Footwear2025 Compressor for air conditioners and refrigerators7.510 Articles of plastics for conveyance and packing such as boxes, case, containers, bottles, insulated ware etc.1015 Aviation turbine fuel05last_img read more

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Mays Brexit talks with Labour stall

first_imgTheresa May`s premiership and Brexit, since 2016. Photo: AFPBritain’s opposition Labour Party said on Friday that talks with the government on a last-ditch Brexit deal had made no progress, as EU leaders said prime minister Theresa May had not convinced them that they should let Britain delay its departure next week.May wrote to Brussels asking European Union leaders to postpone Britain’s exit from next Friday until 30 June. But they have insisted that she must first show a viable plan to secure agreement on her divorce deal in the deadlocked parliament.Labour, which she turned to reluctantly after failing three times to get her deal passed, said the government “has not offered real change or compromise” in three days of talks.”We urge the prime minister to come forward with genuine changes to her deal,” a statement said.Labour Brexit spokesman Keir Starmer said his party wanted the talks to go on, and a spokesman for May’s office said the government had “made serious proposals” in the talks and wanted them to continue over the weekend “in order to deliver a deal that is acceptable to both sides”.May badly needs evidence of a viable divorce strategy to persuade the other 27 EU leaders at a summit next Wednesday to grant a delay, preferably on her preferred departure date.Any extension would require unanimous approval from the other EU countries, all weary of Britain’s Brexit indecision, and could come with conditions.”If we are not able to understand the reason why the UK is asking for an extension, we cannot give a positive answer,” said French finance minister Bruno Le Maire. German justice minister Katarina Barley tweeted: “This playing for time must end.”Deep divisions in May’s Conservative Party and government, and in Labour, have led to a marathon of votes in parliament, in which scenarios ranging from abandoning the EU with no transition period to cancelling Brexit have all been defeated.Last Friday, May did the unthinkable by asking Labour to negotiate with her on a deal that might work for both – although some in Labour said she was luring the party into sharing responsibility for her failure.Letter To BrusselsHoping this would satisfy EU leaders, May wrote to EU summit chair Donald Tusk proposing a delay until June 30 at the latest, accepting that Britain might have to hold European Parliament elections on 23 May, which she had hoped to avoid.”The government will want to agree a timetable for ratification that allows the United Kingdom to withdraw from the European Union before 23 May, 2019, and therefore cancel the European Parliament elections, but will continue to make responsible preparations to hold the elections should this not prove possible,” the letter said.So far, there has been little appetite in Brussels for an extension that could create another cliff edge in three months. May asked two weeks ago for a delay until June 30, only to be turned down.Tusk is planning to propose an extension of a year, which could also be shortened if Britain ratifies the withdrawal agreement, senior EU officials said.”The only reasonable way out would be a long but flexible extension. I would call it a ‘flextension’,” one official said.”It seems to be a good scenario for both sides, as it gives the UK all the necessary flexibility, while avoiding the need to meet every few weeks to further discuss Brexit extensions.”But Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said May’s letter raised questions, adding: “We hope for more clarity from London before next Wednesday.”And France, which wants the EU to move on to other business including reforms proposed by President Emmanuel Macron, indicated it was not ready to accept any delay without a clear plan.”If we are not able to understand the reason why the UK is asking for an extension, we cannot give a positive answer,” finance minister Bruno Le Maire told reporters in Bucharest.Second referendum?Sterling fell against the US dollar immediately after Labour’s comments and stood 0.5 per cent down on the day.With time running out, it was not clear how Britain would avoid the abrupt “no-deal” departure that business leaders in Britain and also neighbouring Ireland say would cause huge disruption.Germany, as one of those with most to lose from a sudden dislocation of trade, has been one of those most tolerant of Britain’s turmoil.Justice Minister Barley tweeted that “there can only be an extension with a clear direction”, but also proposed a potential way out by adding: “This includes the question of a second referendum.”The idea of asking Britons – who voted by 52 per cent to 48 to leave the EU three years ago – to confirm or reject any divorce deal has been gaining ground in Britain.Yet May herself and many lawmakers in both main parties are strongly opposed, saying it would betray voters and undermine democracy, especially if it offered an option to stay in the EU.Both main parties made commitments after the referendum to deliver Brexit, but they never settled on a plan for how to leave or what future relationship to seek.May long insisted that her plan – quitting all EU institutions, with a 21-month standstill period to negotiate a bespoke free trade deal – was the only viable one. But it still split her cabinet and infuriated the most eurosceptic of her Conservatives.Labour wants closer ties than May has sought, including a customs union, which she has so far ruled out. Many Labour members of parliament insist that any agreement must be put to a second public vote.last_img
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