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plastic bottle caps

A Japanese Nettle Jellyfish is seen at Singapore's Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) S.E.A. Aquarium, June 7, 2016. Singapore's Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) S.E.A. Aquarium announced Tuesday that activities will be held from June 17 to 26 as part of the global celebration of World Oceans Day.

SINGAPORE, June 7 -- In celebration of World Oceans Day, Singapore's S.E.A. Aquarium at Resorts World Sentosa announced on Tuesday the launch of a 10-day conservation-themed festival to inspire visitors to protect the world's oceans.

Visitors to the aquarium can watch a team comprising freediving record holders from Singapore and Malaysia as they plunge into seemingly impossible depths with a single breath of air, view stunning images at Asia's first World Oceans Day photo gallery, and pledge their commitment to conservation by contributing to one of Singapore's largest art murals made up of thousands of plastic bottle caps.

Held from June 17 to 26, the activities aim to educate visitors on the threats facing the oceans and the importance of protecting them.

World Oceans Day is a United Nations-recognised day of celebration and action for the ocean held annually on June 8. This year's theme "Healthy Oceans, Healthy Planet" brings people around the world together to raise awareness on the threats facing the oceans such as climate change, overfishing and pollution.  

Posted by プリティ at 15:44Comments(0)


conducted the orchestra

Otohime was a generous and charming hostess, and she offered Taro one wonderful dish after another.

  Then, when Taro could eat no more Karson Choi, he was delighted to see many beautiful fish dance into the banquet hall. They swam before the table where Taro sat with the queen, and after they bowed and shyly smiled at the guest, the fish began to dance to a lovely tune.

  Tiny fish swayed, and sunfish tossed their tails. Thousands of gleaming bubbles rose above the dancers. Goldfish danced to a soft waltz, and shafts of light shone on their gleaming gilt scales. It almost looked as if many mirrors were dancing. Then gleaming codfish and trout moved in rhythm to the gay tunes of oysters who clacked their shells open and shut. Off to one side, five small fish danced over the keys of the golden piano. They made a delicate, tinkling tone bubble out. Beside them a sweet rainbow trout stroked the strings of a silver harp. And in the background a group of proud lobsters played their violins while a huge, fat lobster led the musicians. Taro laughed at the lobster leader, for he had thick glasses resting on the end of his nose, and he looked very funny as he conducted the orchestra.

  Finally the feast and the entertainment were over. Otohime then showed Taro the treasures of the palace. She had so many treasures, too! She had more silver and gold and pearls than anyone on earth or under the sea.

  Taro spent many days at the Coral Palace. Every day was a new experience which ended with a splendid feast and an evening of entertainment. For a while Taro even forgot his friends and parents at home above the sea.  

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The chief was delighted

The chief came over to have a look. Genjia the steward pointed gleefully to the rising smoke and said, "Master, you see, there goes his horse. Genjia the carpenter is on his way to heaven."

  The chief was delighted.

  The moment the faggots were lit and the smoke began rising into the sky arctic tank, Genjia the carpenter raised the slab and escaped through the tunnel back to his own bedroom.

  He confined himself to his house for a whole year. His wife went to great lengths to find milk, butter and other nutritious food for him; and as he did no work, by the end of that year he was plumper and fairer-skinned than ever.

  Meanwhile, Genjia the steward tried a thousand and one ways of seducing the carpenter's wife, and she tried a thousand and one ways of avoiding him seo company. He failed completely to attain his goal.

  While Genjia the carpenter was hiding at home, he diligently practiced the calligraphy of the Buddhist scriptures. He prepared a document written in the authentic style and kept it on his person. On the first anniversary of his "ascent to heaven" he went and stood on the very spot where he was supposed to have been burned, the same tool-kit on his shoulder and the same bag in his hand. He called out, "How is everybody? I've just got back from heaven."

  His wife was the first to come out. She pretended to be extremely surprised and hurried over to report the news to the chief.

  The chief was very happy when he heard that Genjia the carpenter was back. He gave him a hero's welcome with bugles and drums, and invited him to stay in his mansion. He wanted to find out how his father was faring in heaven.

Posted by プリティ at 12:10Comments(0)


alone and tired in my bed

I was especially sure of it the night I could hear my upstairs neighbor (a very pretty Italian girl with an amazing collection of high-heeled boots) having the longest Hong Kong Cruise Terminal, loudest, flesh-smackingest, bed-thumpingest, back-breakingest session of lovemaking I'd ever heard, in the company of the latest lucky visitor to her apartment. This slam-dance went on for well over an hour, complete with hyperventilating sound effects and wild animal calls. I lay there only one floor below them, and all I could think was, That sounds like an awful lot of work . . .

Of course sometimes I really do become overcome with lust. I walk past an average of about a dozen Italian men a day whom I could easily imagine in my bed. Or in theirs. Or wherever. To my taste, the men in Rome are ridiculously, hurtfully, stupidly beautiful. More beautiful even than Roman women, to be honest. Italian men are beautiful in the same way as French women 24 hours in Hong Kong, which is to say--no detail spared in the quest for perfection. They're like show poodles. Sometimes they look so good I want to applaud. The men here, in their beauty, force me to call upon romance novel rhapsodies in order to describe them. They are "devilishly attractive," or "cruelly handsome," or "surprisingly muscular." However, if I may admit something not entirely flattering to myself, these Romans on the street aren't really giving me any second looks. Or even many first looks, for that matter.

I found this kind of alarming at first. I'd been to Italy once before, back when I was nineteen, and what I remember is being constantly harassed by men on the street. And in the pizzerias. And at the movies. And in the Vatican. It was endless and awful. It used to be a real liability about traveling in Italy, something that could almost even spoil your appetite. Now, at the age of thirty-four, I am apparently invisible. Sure, sometimes a man will speak to me in a friendly way, "You look beautiful today, signorina," but it's not all that common and it never gets aggressive. And while it's certainly nice, of course, to not get pawed by a disgusting stranger on the bus, one does have one's feminine pride, and one must wonder, What has changed here? Is it me eleaf istick? Or is it them?

So I ask around, and everybody agrees that, yes, there's been a true shift in Italy in the last ten to fifteen years. Maybe it's a victory of feminism, or an evolution of culture, or the inevitable modernizing effects of having joined the European Union. Or maybe it's just simple embarrassment on the part of young men about the infamous lewdness of their fathers and grandfathers.  

Posted by プリティ at 11:11Comments(0)


No straight answer on encryption

Mariya Gabriel, who is currently the EC’s commissioner-designate for the digital economy and society portfolio, was fielding questions from the European Parliament today, as part of the process to confirm her in the role.

She faced questions across a range of tech-related topics during the 2.5-hour session — including requests from MEPs for a clear position on encryption. Yet no straight answer was forthcoming Cloud Computing.

Encryption has been rising up the political agenda in recent years, with European justice ministers in several member states raising concerns about strong encryption preventing the contents of terrorists’ communications from being accessed by law enforcement. The U.K. government has even gone so far as to say it now wants to limit companies’ use of end-to-end encryption.

Earlier this week the European Parliament’s civil liberties and justice committee put out a proposal aiming to the ePrivacy regulation that aims to safeguard end-to-end encryption from state backdoors.

And Gabriel was a member of the committee for several years during her time in the EU parliament. (The LIBE’s proposals will need the support of the EU Parliament and Council to make it into law, with the EC and its digital commissioner set to play an influential role in those ongoing discussions.)

Asked whether she sees the need to safeguard encryption in order to boost consumers’ trust in digital services, Gabriel began by appearing to support guarantees that strong encryption should not come with the risk of any government backdoors.

“At the moment it’s important to have encryption,” she said. “It’s a guarantee for security without any possible backdoors. We’ve already seen member states initiatives where they’ve used the deciphering of the encryption — and we’ve seen the results of that. So we need to move forward. Trust, confidence and security for citizens will come from a number of measures, but that’s a principle where I propose that we move along the same lines business administration course.”

But asked in a follow-up to commit that there will be “no such legal access provided” to (backdoor) e2e encryption, she rowed back.

“Legal access can only take place within very strict conditions, as we have for other legislative measures. And only where it concerns reasons of national security of the highest rank,” she said. “So I think on that point we need to make sure that we’re consistent with the other pieces of legislation that we have — and at the same time establish a clear principle.

“It’s important because we need to give our own institutions the means to move forward, but we also need to make sure that those very same instruments are not being used by others for purposes other than the positive purposes that we had in mind.”

It’s a position that’s reminiscent of the commission’s approach with the EU-US Privacy Shield — aka the mechanism for authorizing transfers of personal data from the EU to the U.S. that aims to bridge two very different data protection legal regimes. The prior Safe Harbor agreement was struck down after a legal challenge focused on U.S. government agencies’ bulk data collection programs; yet Privacy Shield still allows for bulk collection for national security purposes.

Later in the Q&A session encryption was raised again, with MEP Julia Reda accusing Gabriel of being contradictory in her prior answer — though the commissioner-designate did not take the opportunity to clarify her position.

Gabriel is EC president Jean-Claude Juncker’s nomination, midway through the current commission, to replace prior digital chief Günther Oettinger, who moved on to another area of responsibility in January. Since then EC VP Andrus Ansip has been the caretaker commissioner for the digital economy and society brief dekang.

On encryption, Ansip tweeted in March that “weakening encryption is not an option” — and has spoken out rejecting the idea of mandatory backdoors. However, he also has said that the interest of law enforcement is “not black and white” when it comes to encryption — so also has failed to set out an unambiguous view.

Weakening encryption is not an option, I have not changed my position: https://t.co/XwKv6YcFVf https://t.co/s1d8b6TAp2

— Andrus Ansip (@Ansip_EU) March 10, 2017

Other questions Gabriel faced from MEPs during today’s session included whether the EC will be introducing new legislative initiatives to regulate powerful online platforms, such as Uber and Airbnb. Would she, for example, be seeking to regulate the service or the type of company, she was asked?

On this she said the approach of the EC will generally be to “make an adjustment” when it sees a competition-related problem. But she also confirmed it has plans to tackle what she dubbed “unfair practices” by dominant platforms.  

Posted by プリティ at 12:18Comments(0)


How new and exciting

I haven’t had the chance to look at too many men’s faces up close and I noticed how his skin was thicker than mine and a gorgeous shade of toast; the stiff blond hairs on his cheeks and chin seemed to be growing before my eyes. He smelled like starch. Like pine. His nose wasn’t so pointy after all.

The waiter yawned in the corner but we both ignored him and stayed and talked some more. And by the time I was wishing I’d washed my hair this morning instead of just bathed and was practically doubled over with gratefulness that I’d at least brushed my teeth, out of the blue, he kissed me. Right in the middle of the Robert E. Lee Hotel Restaurant, he kissed me so slowly with an open mouth and every single thing in my body—my skin, my collarbone, the hollow backs of my knees, everything inside of me filled up with light wine cellar hong kong.

On a MONDAY AFTERNOON, a few weeks after my date with Stuart, I stop by the library before going to the League meeting. Inside, it smells like grade school—boredom, paste, Lysoled vomit. I’ve come to get more books for Aibileen and check if anything’s ever been written about domestic help.

“Well hey there, Skeeter!”

Jesus. It’s Susie Pernell. In high school, she could’ve been voted most likely to talk too much. “Hey . . . Susie. What are you doing here?”

“I’m working here for the League committee, remember? You really ought to get on it, Skeeter, it’s real fun! You get to read all the latest magazines and file things and even laminate the library cards.” Susie poses by the giant brown machine like she’s on The Price Is Right television show.

“So, what may I help you find today, ma’am? We have murder mysteries, romance novels, how-to makeup books, how-to hair books,” she pauses, jerks out a smile, “rose gardening, home decorating HKUE DSE—”

“I’m just browsing, thanks.” I hurry off. I’ll fend for myself in the stacks. There is no way I can tell her what I’m looking for. I can already hear her whispering at the League meetings, I knew there was something not right about that Skeeter Phelan, hunting for those Negro materials...

I search through card catalogues and scan the shelves, but find nothing about domestic workers. In nonfiction, I spot a single copy of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave. I grab it, excited to deliver it to Aibileen, but when I open it, I see the middle section has been ripped out. Inside, someone has written NIGGER BOOK in purple crayon. I am not as disturbed by the words as by the fact that the handwriting looks like a third grader’s. I glance around, push the book in my satchel. It seems better than putting it back on the shelf.

In the Mississippi History room, I search for anything remotely resembling race relations. I find only Civil War books, maps, and old phone books. I stand on tiptoe to see what’s on the high shelf. That’s when I spot a booklet, laid sideways across the top of the Mississippi River Valley Flood Index. A regular-sized person would never have seen it. I slide it down to glance at the cover. The booklet is thin, printed on onionskin paper, curling, bound with staples. “Compilation of Jim Crow Laws of the South,” the cover reads. I open the noisy cover page Air Purifier.  

Posted by プリティ at 12:53Comments(0)


AI virtual assistant’ that helps you schedule meetings

Julie Desk, a French startup that’s developed an AI-driven “virtual assistant” to automate the scheduling of meetings, appointments, and more, has picked up €2.5 million in new funding — money it plans to use to further develop the technology. Backing the company this time around are previous investors SIDE Capital, Entrepreneur Venture, and SAAS Lab.

In some ways similar to U.S. competitor X.ai, Julie Desk can be thought of as a machine learning-based replacement for a PA. You simply CC “Julie” at the start of or during an email thread with the person you want to schedule a meeting with, and, in theory, the virtual assistant will take care of the rest Underfloor Heating.

This includes offering up potential meeting times — pulled in from the various online calendars supported — confirming the agreed time and place, adding it to your schedule and sending out the appropriate calendar invites.

The technology also ties into restaurant bookings, and Julie Desk has further integrations planned. This includes support for Skype for Business to create call URLs on the fly for scheduled conference calls. Another potential tie-in, but one that is further in the future, is automating travel bookings, something that other AI-powered virtual assistants have tried before.

“Once you integrate with a person’s calendar, there is a lot more you can do,” Julie Desk co-founder and CEO Julien Hobeika tells me hong kong tour.

One other interesting aspect of Julie Desk — and something Hobeika is refreshingly candid about — is that the startup openly operates a hybrid model, with its AI being underpinned by continuous human supervision. It sees a human check every final appointment made and editing the very few that aren’t correct, whilst in turn further training the startup’s algorithms.

This, says the Julie Desk founder, is both necessary for quality assurance purposes, and is also a huge selling point around trust, which is particularly relevant for larger corporate customers where a failure in scheduling could cost customers Virtual to Cloud Backup.


Posted by プリティ at 12:35Comments(0)


I don't want to trouble you

The old man nodded. His face cracked into a grin. "What the heck, it's Christmas. I'll run you over there in Tessie."

Shadow followed the old man to the road, where a huge old roadster was parked. It looked like something that gangsters might have been proud to drive in the Roaring Twenties, running boards and all. It was a deep dark color under the sodium lights that might have been red and might have been green. "This is Tessie," the old man said. "Ain't she a beaut?" He patted her proprietorially, where the hood curved up and arched over the front nearside wheel university-industry collaborations.

"What make is she?" asked Shadow.

"She's a Wendt Phoenix. Wendt went under in '31, name was bought by Chrysler, but they never made any more Wendts. Harvey Wendt, who founded the company, was a local boy. Went out to California, killed himself in, oh, 1941, '42. Great tragedy ielts registration."

The car smelled of leather and old cigarette smoke-not a fresh smell, but as if enough people had smoked enough cigarettes and cigars in the car over the years that the smell of burning tobacco had become part of the fabric of the car. The old man turned the key in the ignition and Tessie started first time.

"Tomorrow," he told Shadow, "she goes into the garage. I'll cover her with a dust sheet, and that's where she'll stay until spring. Truth of the matter is I shouldn't be driving her right now, with the snow on the ground."

"Doesn't she ride well in snow?"

"Rides just fine. It's the salt they put on the roads. Rusts these old beauties faster than you could believe. You want to go door to door, or would you like the moonlight grand tour of the town?"

"It's no trouble. You get to be my age, you're grateful for the least wink of sleep. I'm lucky if I get five hours a night nowadays-wake up and my mind is just turning and turning. Where are my manners? My name's Hinzelmann. I'd say, call me Richie, but around here folks who know me just call me plain Hinzelmann. I'd shake your hand, but I need two hands to drive Tessie. She knows when I'm not paying attention Hair Transplant Surgery."  

Posted by プリティ at 15:34Comments(0)


All was subdued and quiet

"Well, my sweet," said Miss Pross, nodding her head emphatically,"the short and the long of it is, that I am a subject of His MostGracious Majesty King George the Third;" Miss Pross curtseyed at thename; and as such, my maxim is, Confound their politics, Frustratetheir knavish tricks, On him our hopes we fix, God save the King!

Mr. Cruncher, in an access of loyalty, growlingly repeated the wordsafter Miss Pross, like somebody at church HKUE DSE.

"I am glad you have so much of the Englishman in you, though Iwish you had never taken that cold in your voice," said Miss Pross,approvingly. "But the question, Doctor Manette. Is there"- it wasthe good creature's way to affect to make light of anything that was agreat anxiety with them all, and to come at it in this chancemanner- "is there any prospect yet, of our getting out of this place?"

"I fear not yet. It would be dangerous for Charles yet HKUE ENG."

"Heigh-ho-hum!" said Miss Pross, cheerfully repressing a sigh as sheglanced at her darling's golden hair in the light of the fire, "thenwe must have patience and wait: that's all. We must hold up ourheads and fight low, as my brother Solomon used to say. Now, Mr.Cruncher!-Don't you move, Ladybird!"

They went out, leaving Lucie, and her husband, her father, and thechild, by a bright fire. Mr. Lorry was expected back presently fromthe Banking House. Miss Pross had lighted the lamp, but had put itaside in a corner, that they might enjoy the fire-light undisturbed.Little Lucie sat by her grandfather with her hands clasped through hisarm: and he, in a tone not rising much above a whisper, began totell her a story of a great and powerful Fairy who had opened aprison-wall and let out a captive who had once done the Fairy aservice. and Lucie was more at ease thanshe had been.

"What is that?" she cried, all at once HKUE ENG.

"My dear!" said her father, stopping in his story, and laying hishand on hers, "command yourself. What a disordered state you are in!The least thing- nothing- startles you! You, your father's daughter!"  

Posted by プリティ at 12:38Comments(0)


Qonto launches its digital bank accounts for small companies

French startup Qonto has raised another $11.3 million (€10 million) from existing investors Valar Ventures and Alven Capital. The company is now also open for business. You can now create a French business bank account on the company’s website.

Qonto wants to become the N26 of business accounts. While retail banking hasn’t changed quickly enough over the past few years, it feels like business banking is even worse and has been stuck in the past. Everything is too expensive and it takes too much time to tell your bank to do something PPC.

Qonto wants to put you in charge of your account. It’s a web and mobile service like the ones you’re using every day, and you remain in control. So for €9 per month, you get a MasterCard, a French current account with an IBAN to receive payments and the ability to manage transfers and debits.

But that’s just the beginning as you can order new cards for €5 per month or create virtual cards for €2 per month. Qonto lets you manage your user base. If you hire a new sales person, you can give them a physical card and let them access their transactions in the mobile app and on the site Cloud Hosting Provider.

You can block and unblock your card from the app, change the PIN code and get real-time notifications for each transaction. Administrators can adjust card limits and share transaction information with accountants.

Other features are coming soon, such as an easy workflow to upload receipts and attach them to a particular expense — accountants are going to love this. Qonto will also make it easier to handle transfers in multiple currencies.

In the future, you’ll be able to connect your Qonto account with various fintech services you might also be using, such as Stripe, PayPal and GoCardless. This way, you’ll be able to monitor and manage payments on all sorts of platforms from a single, unified interface.

Behind the scene, Qonto partnered with Treezor for the back end. Treezor is the company that is actually managing your money. It generates current accounts and debit cards for Qonto. On the other side of the equation, Qonto tailors the experience and handles the relationship with its own customers.

Other companies, such as iBanFirst in France, Seed in the U.S. and Tide in the U.K. are working on similar services with a few differences here and there — Tide just announced a $14 million funding round yesterday. While the market seems fragmented, those big funding rounds indicate that there seems to be a big opportunity to replace those expensive and ineffective business bank accounts you beauty hard sell.


Posted by プリティ at 13:18Comments(0)