Monday, May 2, 2005

Swiss cement firm Holcim Ltd. today reported that net profits jumped by 67% in the first quarter. The company which has operations in over 70 countries revealed that first quarter profits were 169m Swiss francs (€110m; US$141m) up from 101m Swiss Francs last year.

Despite what appears to be a large rise in profits, sales actually fell to 2.7bn Swiss francs — a drop of 1.1 percent. The jump in net profits was largely due to a change in accountancy methods. Operating profits rose just 10% to 411m Swiss francs. This small rise in operating profits was largely due to a major price increase in mature markets such as the US, enabled by strong demand in the marketplace.

Holcim was founded in 1912 in Holderbank, Canton Aargau, Switzerland. Today it employs 46,000 people worldwide and produces over 145m tons of cement annually. It has has recently acquired British- based Aggregate Industries PLC, and gained a controlling interest in India’s No. 2 cement player, Associated Cement Companies Ltd.

Holcim Ltd. is the world’s second-largest cement maker, beaten in size only by Lafarge, a French giant which employs over 77,000 people and sold almost US$20bn worth of building materials last year.

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Wikinews interviews biologist Chris Simon about periodical cicadas

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

In May, periodical cicadas with 17 years life cycle emerged on the East Coast of the USA after underground development as juveniles since 1996. Researchers and scientists worked to map and study the rare wave, and the locals prepared for the noisy event. First recorded in 1666, the Magicicada septendecim species recently emerged in 1979, 1996, this year, with a next wave due in 2030.

This week, Wikinews interviewed Chris Simon, an ecology and evolutionary biologist at University of Connecticut, about the cicadas.

((Wikinews)) What caused your initial interest in periodical cicadas?

Chris Simon: As an undergraduate student, I was interested in the formation of species so when I went to graduate school I looked for a study organism that was likely to be in the process of forming new species. I chose periodical cicadas because they are broken up into reproductively isolated broods (or year classes). Reproductive isolation leads to speciation so I planned to study biochemical differences among the broods.

((WN)) You study the emergence of the periodical cicadas. What do you study? What observations are you making?

CS: We record exactly where each cicada population emerges (using GPS automated mapping and crowd sourcing). We record the presence or absence of each of the three morphologically distinct species groups of periodical cicadas (Decim group, Cassini group, and Decula group). We collect specimens for DNA analysis. We look for cicadas coming up one and four years early and late. We dig up cicada nymphs and monitor their growth rates.

((WN)) What equipment do you use?

CS: Nets, shovels, automated GPS recorders, cameras, laptop computers, automated DNA sequencers.

((WN)) Do you study the periodical cicadas with anyone else? What is their role?

CS: Yes, there are a large number of people studying periodical cicadas in my lab and in other labs. My lab is made up of Research Scientists, Postdoctoral Researchers, a technician, graduate students, and undergraduates. Research Scientist John Cooley is the leader of the GPS mapping project; he invented the automated GPS recorder; he built our crowd-sourcing website, and he is instrumental in public outreach. Postdoctoral research David Marshall also participates in the mapping project and leads the part of the research related to the mapping of stragglers. John and Dave and Technician Kathy Hill all study periodical cicada mating behavior and conduct mating and hybridization experiments. One of my graduate students Beth Wade has participated in the nymph collections and will soon start genetic work involving genome wide association mapping designed to locate genes related to life cycle. My graduate student Russ Meister is studying the genes of the bacterial endosymbionts of cicadas. My current undergraduate honors student Erin Dwyer is also studying the development of Magicicada nymphs and is helping to design a lab exercise for college students around the eastern US to do the same. Many of my past undergraduate students have studied the biochemical genetics and development of periodical cicadas. See the Simon Lab website.
CS: We are collaborating with Teiji Sota at the University Kyoto and Jin Yoshimura at Shizuoka University in Japan. They are studying the phylogeography of Magicicada. We are collaborating with John McCutcheon of the University of Montana who is studying the endosymbiont genomes.
CS: We are also collaborating with ecologists Rick Karban and Louie Yang, both professors at UC Davis who have an interest in cicada population dynamics and nutrient cycling in the ecosystem.

((WN)) You studied the periodical cicadas in 1979 and 1996 too. What changes with time?

CS: I have studied periodical cicadas since I was a student back in 1974. What changes with time is increased human development constantly shrinking the patch size of cicada populations.

((WN)) What are your thoughts on the long life span of the periodical cicadas? Why could it be so? What advantages and what disadvantages does it have?

CS: Most or all cicadas have long life cycles compared to your typical annual insect. Examples have been found of two-year to 9-year cycles in different species. Periodical cicadas evolved an even-longer life cycle and I think that part of this relates to the evolution of their synchronized life cycles and peculiar safety-in-numbers strategy for survival. To become synchronized, periodical cicadas had to evolve an exact length life cycle and all adults would have to appear in the same year. Because the nymphs grow at different rates underground, a longer life cycle and a way of counting years must have evolved so that the individuals that get to the last nymphal (underground juvenile) stage first would wait long enough for all other individuals in the population to become ready to emerge.

((WN)) News reports mention this is ‘Brood II’ of the periodical cicadas. What are the distinctive features of this specific species and what is its full scientific name?

CS: The same species exist in multiple broods. No species is restricted to Brood II. The three species present in Brood II are: Magicicada septendecim, M. cassini, and M. septendecula. These same three species are found in every 17-year brood (except the farthest north which only has M. septendecim).

((WN)) At what depth do the cicadas juveniles live underground?

CS: Most live within the top foot of soil but some have been found deeper. We do not know if they go deeper in winter. We need to do much more digging to understand the nymphs.

((WN)) How do people prepare for the cicada emergence?

CS: Of course various people prepare in different ways. Ideally, everyone prepares by studying information available on the web (especially on our websites Magicicada Central and Magicicada.org).

((WN)) Do cicadas affect transport in the local area?

CS: No, not really. Occasionally individuals can be seeing flying across highways and sometimes they smash into cars.

((WN)) Do cicadas usually stay outside or do they also invade houses too?

CS: They stay outside. One might accidentally fly in through an open window but that would be rare.

((WN)) What do the cicadas eat?

CS: Cicadas suck xylem fluid (the watery fluid coming up from the roots of plants) in deciduous forest trees and herbs. Essential amino acids in the cicada diet are supplied by their bacterial endosymbionts. There are two species of endosymbionts. One makes 8 essential amino acids and one makes two essential amino acids.

((WN)) Do cicadas damage crops or city vegetation? What damage?

CS: Cicadas do not chew leave so they do not damage crops like other insects. They can inflict some damage by their egg laying. Cicadas lay eggs in pencil-sized tree branches. If there are not enough branches available, too many female cicadas may lay eggs in a single branch weakening it and making it susceptible to breakage by wind. This can sometimes cause damage in fruit orchards. If the branches break, the eggs die so this behavior is selected against by natural selection.

((WN)) Thank you.

CS: You’re welcome. I am happy to have this opportunity to communicate with your readers!

Ontario Votes 2007: Interview with NDP candidate Sheila White, Scarborough-Rouge River

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Ontario Votes 2007: Interview with NDP candidate Sheila White, Scarborough-Rouge River
Author: U5M4mh Posted under: Uncategorized

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Having worked as an aide, advisor, and Executive Assistant to municipal and provincial politicians, Sheila White is running for the Ontario New Democratic Party in the Ontario provincial election, in the Scarborough-Rouge River riding. Wikinews’ Nick Moreau interviewed her regarding her values, her experience, and her campaign.

Stay tuned for further interviews; every candidate from every party is eligible, and will be contacted. Expect interviews from Liberals, Progressive Conservatives, New Democratic Party members, Ontario Greens, as well as members from the Family Coalition, Freedom, Communist, Libertarian, and Confederation of Regions parties, as well as independents.

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88th annual Brita Kongreso draws to a close

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88th annual Brita Kongreso draws to a close
Author: U5M4mh Posted under: Uncategorized

Monday, May 7, 2007

The 88th annual Brita Kongreso (British Congress) in Letchworth, England drew to an official close, Sunday, after a weekend of presentations, courses, lectures, and activities in Esperanto. With the final excursion to Cambridge (town of the Third Universal Esperanto Congress in 1907) taking place on Monday, the event will draw to a final close at the end of today.

The Brita Kongreso is an opportunity for Esperantists the world over to convene and spend the weekend being entertained, lectured, and socialising with other Esperantists in a relaxed atmosphere. This year, it was also host to a Guinness World Record attempt by French musician Jean-Marc Leclercq, a.k.a. jOmO, who successfully sang 25 songs in 25 different languages in an open air concert on Saturday, before providing evening entertainment within the main venue, Plinston Hall.

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Pennsylvania state trooper found guilty of first-degree murder

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Pennsylvania state trooper found guilty of first-degree murder
Author: U5M4mh Posted under: Uncategorized

Friday, March 20, 2009

In the United States, a suspended Pennsylvania state trooper has been convicted of first-degree murder for killing his girlfriend’s estranged husband.

Kevin Foley, 43, faces a mandatory life sentence without parole for slashing to death John Yelenic, a Blairsville dentist who was in the final stages of divorcing his wife, Michele. Foley’s attorney said he plans to appeal the decision. Prosecutors did not seek the death penalty.

Foley previously said he “loathed Dr. Yelenic” and asked another fellow trooper to help kill him. During his testimony, which lasted several hours, Foley claimed he was joking and had no true intention of carrying out the threat, but the Indiana County jury rejected that defense after about six hours of deliberations.

John Yelenic was found dead in his home on April 13, 2006, one day before he was planning on signing his divorce papers. Charges were brought against Foley in September 2007, more than 17 months after the murder.

Foley, who had been on suspension from the Pennsylvania State Police, was himself the final witness to take the stand Wednesday in the trial. Foley insisted he was innocent during his testimony, and even made jokes that the jury laughed at on a few occasions.

“I never made a threat with the intention of carrying it out,” Foley said under cross-examination by the prosecution.

When Senior Deputy Attorney General Anthony Krastek pressed Foley for what was funny about asking another state trooper to help him kill Yelenic, Foley answered, “There isn’t any joke. It’s just my personality, my behavior (with co-workers).”

Prosecutors said Foley killed Yelenic after going to the dentist’s house to confront him over the terms of the divorce. Prosecutors claim Foley slashed Yelenic several times with a knife and pushed his head through a small window. Yelenic bled to death.

“John has his justice tonight,” Mary Ann Clark, a cousin of Yelenic, told MSNBC. “John deserved this; he was the most wonderful person in the world. He died the most horrible death and tonight, this is his night. The system worked.”

Foley had been living with Michele Yelenic for two years at the time of the homicide. Prosecutors previously said Foley and Michele helped perpetuate rumors that Dr. Yelenic molested their son. John and Michele Yelenic had been separated in 2002. Michele Yelenic stood to collect Dr. Yelenic’s estate and a US$1 million life insurance policy, and could lose about $2,500 a month in support if the divorce was finalized, a Pennsylvania grand jury previously determined.

Michele Yelenic, who has not appeared at the trial, may face legal action herself, media reports indicated. A sentencing hearing for Foley is scheduled for June 1.

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Benefits Of Visiting A Family Dentist In Oyster Bay, Ny

Author: U5M4mh Posted under: Dentist

byAlma Abell

Good health involves taking good care of every part of your body including the teeth. Many people fear visiting the dentist because of the myths they have about the service offered. Others dread that some of their teeth may be removed. But visiting a Family Dentist in Oyster Bay, NY gives you a different perspective about treatment and taking care of your teeth.

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Locust Valley Dental Group is a professionally managed clinic that provides solutions to all your teeth problems. They have world class treatment rooms that are comfortable to help you relax as they treat you. The doctors are professionally trained and have been in practice for decades.

They have embraced the modern technology in their service delivery. Patients input their personal information using iPads to enable easy storage, access and updating of records. You can also switch to your favorite channel on cable TV or bring your best DVD and have it played. This is meant to give the best moments to the patients as they get treated. During the operation, patients wear special headphones to help relax as they enjoy the superb treatment.

Soprulife Intraoral camera is used in the diagnosis to detect a dental failure and provide visual information to the doctor. The CDR Schick- a digital radiograph provides detailed images that can be magnified to view small defects in the dentition. The diode ezlase laser technology is utilized in soft tissue procedure and teeth whitening to give you a reason to smile again. The YSGG iPlus laser is used in hard tissue surgery, injection-free fillings and endodontic decontamination of canals.

The laser technology has many benefits which include non-invasive surgical procedures and accelerated rate of healing. Nitrous (laughing gas) is administered upon patient’s approval to help relax if other forms of relaxation do not work. A hands-free sterilization centre and disposable cutting bars are available to prevent cross contamination

Since their practice is not limited to dentistry, they care about the overall health of the clients. This involves educating them on methods of maintaining their teeth and advising on better eating habits. Newsletters, booklets and brochures are also available upon request. Acceptable forms of payments include cash, CareCredit, MasterCard, Visa and insurance claims processing. For more information, visit .

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Ontario Votes 2007: Interview with Green Party candidate Torbjorn Zetterlund, Willowdale

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Ontario Votes 2007: Interview with Green Party candidate Torbjorn Zetterlund, Willowdale
Author: U5M4mh Posted under: Uncategorized

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Torbjorn Zetterlund is running for the Green Party of Ontario in the Ontario provincial election, in the Willowdale riding. Wikinews’ Nick Moreau interviewed him regarding his values, his experience, and his campaign.

Stay tuned for further interviews; every candidate from every party is eligible, and will be contacted. Expect interviews from Liberals, Progressive Conservatives, New Democratic Party members, Ontario Greens, as well as members from the Family Coalition, Freedom, Communist, Libertarian, and Confederation of Regions parties, as well as independents.

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OpenSync Interview – syncing on the free desktop

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OpenSync Interview – syncing on the free desktop
Author: U5M4mh Posted under: Uncategorized

Friday, May 19, 2006

This interview intends to provide some insight into OpenSync, an upcoming free unified data synchronization solution for free software desktops such as KDE, commonly used as part of the GNU/Linux operating system.

Hi Cornelius, Armin and Tobias. As you are now getting close to version 1.0 of OpenSync, which is expected to become the new synchronisation framework for KDE and other free desktops, we are quite interested in the merits it can provide for KDE users and for developers, as well as for the Open Source Community as a whole. So there’s one key-question before I move deeper into the details of OpenSync:

What does OpenSync accomplish, that no one did before?

Cornelius:

First of all it does its job of synchronizing data like addressbooks and calendars between desktop applications and mobile devices like PDAs and cell phones.
But the new thing about OpenSync is that it isn’t tied to a particular device or a specific platform. It provides an extensible and modular framework that is easy to adopt for application developers and people implementing support for syncing with mobile devices.
OpenSync is also independent of the desktop platform. It will be the common syncing backend for at least KDE and GNOME and other projects are likely to join. That means that the free desktop will have one common syncing solution. This is something really new.

How do the end-users profit from using synching solutions that interface with OpenSync as framework?

Cornelius:

First, the users will be able to actually synchronize all their data. By using one common framework there won’t be any “missing links”, where one application can sync one set of devices and another application a different one. With OpenSync all applications can sync all devices.
Second, the users will get a consistent and common user interface for syncing across all applications and devices. This will be much simpler to use than the current incoherent collection of syncing programs you need if you have more than the very basic needs.

How does OpenSync help developers with coding?

Cornelius:

It’s a very flexible and well-designed framework that makes it quite easy for developers to add support for new devices and new types of data. It’s also very easy to add support for OpenSync to applications.
The big achievement of OpenSync is that it hides all the gory details of syncing from the developers who work on applications and device support. That makes it possible for the developers to concentrate on their area of expertise without having to care what’s going on behind the scenes.
I have written quite a lot of synchronization code in the past. Trust me, it’s much better, if someone just takes care of it for you, and that’s what OpenSync does.

Tobias:

Another point to mention is the python wrapper for opensync, so you are not bound to C or C++, but can develop plugins in a high level scripting language.

Why should producers of portable devices get involved with your team?

Cornelius:

OpenSync will be the one common syncing solution for the free desktop. That means there is a single point of contact for device manufacturers who want to add support for their devices. That’s much more feasible than addressing all the different applications and solutions we had before. With OpenSync it hopefully will become interesting for manufacturers to officially support Linux for their devices.

Do you also plan to support applications of OpenSync in proprietary systems like OSX and Windows?

Cornelius:

OpenSync is designed to be cross-platform, so it is able to run on other systems like Windows. How well this works is always a question of people actually using and developing for this system. As far as I know there isn’t a real Windows community around OpenSync yet. But the technical foundation is there, so if there is somebody interested in working on a unified syncing solution on Windows, everybody is welcome to join the project.

What does your synchronisation framework do for KDE and for KitchenSync in particular?

Cornelius:

OpenSync replaces the KDE-specific synchronization frameworks we had before. Even in KDE we had several separate syncing implementations and with OpenSync we can get replace them with a common framework. We had a more generic syncing solution in KDE under development. This was quite similar from a design point of view to OpenSync, but it never got to the level of maturity we would have needed, because of lack of resources. As OpenSync fills this gap we are happy to be able to remove our old code and now concentrate on our core business.

What was your personal reason for getting involved with OpenSync?

Cornelius:

I wrote a lot of synchronization code in the past, which mainly came from the time where I was maintaining KOrganizer and working on KAddressBook. But this always was driven by necessity and not passion. I wanted to have all my calendar and contact data in one place, but my main objective was to work on the applications and user interfaces handling the data and not on the underlying code synchronizing the data.
So when the OpenSync project was created I was very interested. At GUADEC in Stuttgart I met with Armin, the maintainer of OpenSync, and we talked about integrating OpenSync with KDE. Everything seemed to fit together quite well, so at Linuxtag the same year we had another meeting with some more KDE people. In the end we agreed to go with OpenSync and a couple of weeks later we met again in Nuernberg for three days of hacking and created the KDE frontend for OpenSync. In retrospect it was a very pleasant and straightforward process to get where we are now.

Armin:

My reason to get involved (or better to start) OpenSync was my involvement with its predecessor Multisync. I am working as a system administrator for a small consulting company and so I saw some problems when trying to find a synchronization solution for Linux.
At that point I joined the Multisync project to implement some plugins that I thought would be nice to have. After some time I became the maintainer of the project. But I was unhappy with some technical aspects of the project, especially the tight coupling between the syncing logic and the GUI, its dependencies on GNOME libraries and its lack of flexibility.

Tobias:

Well, I have been a KDE PIM developer for several years now, so there was no way around getting in touch with synchronization and KitchenSync. Although I liked the idea of KitchenSync, I hated the code and the user interface […]. So when we discussed to switch to OpenSync and reimplementing the user interface, I volunteered immediately.

Can you tell us a bit about your further plans and ideas?

Cornelius:

The next thing will be the 1.0 release of OpenSync. We will release KitchenSync as frontend in parallel.

Armin:

There are of course a lot of things on my todo and my wishlist for opensync. For the near future the most important step is the 1.0 release, of course, where we still have some missing features in OpenSync as well as in the plugins.
One thing I would really like to see is a thunderbird plugin for OpenSync. I use thunderbird personally and would really like to keep my contacts up to date with my cellular, but I was not yet able to find the time to implement it.

Tobias:

One thing that would really rock in future versions of OpenSync is an automatic hardware detection mechanism, so when you plugin your Palm or switch on your bluetooth device, OpenSync will create a synchronization group automatically and ask the user to start syncing. To bring OpenSync to the level of _The Syncing Solution [tm]_ we must reduce the necessary configuration to a minimum.

What was the most dire problem you had to face when creating OpenSync and how did you face it?

Cornelius:

Fortunately the problems which I personally would consider to be dire are solved by the implementation of OpenSync which is well hidden from the outside world and [they are] an area I didn’t work on 😉

Armin:

I guess that I am the right person to answer this question then 🙂
The most complicated part of OpenSync is definitely the format conversion, which is responsible for converting the format of one device to the format that another device understands.
There are a lot of subsystems in this format conversion that make it so complex, like conversion path searching, comparing items, detection of mime types and last but not least the conversion itself. So this was a hard piece of work.

What was the greatest moment for you?

Cornelius:

I think the greatest moment was when, after three days of concentrated hacking, we had a first working version of the KDE frontend for OpenSync. This was at meeting at the SUSE offices in Nuernberg and we were able to successfully do a small presentation and demo to a group of interested SUSE people.

Armin:

I don’t remember a distinct “greatest moment”. But what is a really great feeling is to see that a project catches on, that other people get involved, use the code you have written and improve it in ways that you haven’t thought of initially.

Tobias:

Hmm, also hacking on OpenSync/KitcheSync is much fun in general, the greatest moment was when the new KitchenSync frontend synced two directories via OpenSync the first time. But it was also cool when we managed to get the IrMC plugin working again after porting it to OpenSync.

As we now know the worst problem you faced and your greatest moment, the only one missing is: What was your weirdest experience while working on OpenSync?

Cornelius:

Not directly related to OpenSync, but pretty weird was meeting a co-worker at the Amsterdam airport when returning from the last OpenSync meeting. I don’t know how high the chance is to meet somebody you know on a big random airport not related at all to the places where you or the other person live, but it was quite surprising.

Tobias:

Since my favorite language is C++, I was always confused how people can use plain C for such a project, half the time your are busy with writing code for allocating/freeing memory areas. Nevertheless Armin did a great job and he is always a help for solving strange C problems 🙂

Now I’d like to move on to some more specific questions about current and planned abilities of OpenSync. As first, I’ve got a personal one:

I have an old iPod sitting around here. Can I or will I be able to use a program utilizing OpenSync to synchronize my calendars, contacts and music to it?

Cornelius:

I’m not aware of any iPod support for OpenSync up to now, but if it doesn’t exist yet, why not write it? OpenSync makes this easy. This is a chance for everybody with the personal desire to sync one device or another to get involved.

Armin:

I dont think that there is iPod support yet for OpenSync. But it would definitely be possible to use OpenSync for this task. So if someone would like to implement an iPod plugin, I would be glad to help 🙂

Which other devices do you already support?

Cornelius:

At this time, OpenSync supports Palms, SyncML and IrMC capable devices.

Which programs already implement OpenSync and where can we check back to find new additions?

Cornelius:

On the application side there is support for Evolution [GNOME] and Kontact with KitchenSync [KDE] on the frontend side and the backend side and some more. I expect that further applications will adopt OpenSync once the 1.0 version is released.

Armin:

Besides kitchensync there already are a command line tool and a port of the multisync GUI. Aside from the GUIs, I would really like to see OpenSync being used in other applications as well. One possibility for example would to be integrate OpenSync into Evolution to give users the possibility to synchronize their devices directly from this application. News can generally be found on the OpenSync web site www.opensync.org.

It is time to give the developers something to devour, too. I’ll keep this as a short twice-fold technical dive before coming to the takeoff question, even though I’m sure there’s information for a double-volume book on technical subleties.

As first dive: How did you integrate OpenSync in KitchenSync, viewed from the coding side?

Cornelius:

OpenSync provides a C interface. We wrapped this with a small C++ library and put KitchenSync on top. Due to the object oriented nature of the OpenSync interfaces this was quite easy.
Recently I also started to write a D-Bus frontend for OpenSync. This also is a nice way to integrate OpenSync which provides a wide variety of options regarding programming languages and system configurations.

And for the second, deeper dive:

Can you give us a quick outline of those inner workings of OpenSync, from the developers view, which make OpenSync especially viable for application in several different desktop environments?

Cornelius:

That’s really a question for Armin. For those who are interested I would recommend to have a look at the OpenSync website. There is a nice white paper about the internal structure and functionality of OpenSync.

Armin:

OpenSync consists of several parts:
First there is the plugin API which defines what functions a plugin has to implement so that OpenSync can dlopen() it. There are 2 types of plugins:
A sync plugin which can synchronize a certain device or application and which provides functions for the initialization, handling the connection to a device and reading and writing items. Then there is a format plugin which defines a format and how to convert, compare and detect it.
The next part is a set of helper functions which are provided to ease to programming of synchronization plugins. These helper functions include things like handling plugin config files, HashTables which can be used to detect changes in sets of items, functions to detect when a resync of devices is necessary etc.
The syncing logic itself resides in the sync engine, which is a separate part. The sync engine is responsible for deciding when to call the connect function of a plugin, when to read or write from it. The engine also takes care of invoking the format conversion functions so that each plugin gets the items in its required format.
If you want more information and details about the inner workings of OpenSync, you should really visit the opensync.org website or ask its developers.

To add some more spice for those of our readers, whose interest you just managed to spawn (or to skyrocket), please tell us where they can get more information on the OpenSync Framework, how they can best meet and help you and how they can help improving sync-support for KDE by helping OpenSync.

Cornelius:

Again, the OpenSync web site is the right source for information. Regarding the KDE side, the kde-pim@kde.org mailing list is probably the right address. At the moment the most important help would be everything which gets the OpenSync 1.0 release done.
[And even though] I already said it, it can’t be repeated too often: OpenSync will be the one unified syncing solution for the free desktop. Cross-device, cross-platform, cross-desktop.
It’s the first time I feel well when thinking about syncing 😉.

Armin:

Regarding OpenSync, the best places to ask would be the opensync mailing lists at sourceforge or the #opensync irc channel on the freenode.net servers.
There are always a lot of things where we could need a helping hand and where we would be really glad to get some help. So everyone who is interested in OpenSync is welcome to join.

Many thanks for your time!

Cornelius:

Thanks for doing the interview. It’s always fun to talk about OpenSync, because it’s really the right thing.

Armin:

Thank you for taking your time and doing this interview. I really appreciate your help!

Tobias:

Thanks for your work. Publication and marketing is something that is really missing in the open source community. We have nice software but nobody knows 😉

Further Information on OpenSync can be found on the OpenSync Website: www.opensync.org


This Interview was done by Arne Babenhauserheide in April 2006 via e-mail and KOffice on behalf of himself, the OpenSource Community, SpreadKDE.org and the Dot (dot.kde.org).It was first published on the Dot and is licensed under the cc-attribution-sharealike-license.A pdf-version with pictures can be found at opensync-interview.pdf (OpenDocument version: opensync-interview.odt)

This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.

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Police ends demonstration of anarchist squatters in Belgium

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Police ends demonstration of anarchist squatters in Belgium
Author: U5M4mh Posted under: Uncategorized

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Last Monday, the police entered the abandoned house in Leuven, Belgium, that anarchist squatters had occupied for seven years. None of the squatters were present at the time, mostly due to exams. The premises was evacuated and the police dumped everything inside in containers. The house, which the squatters had baptised Villa Squattus Dei, belongs to the Catholic organisation Opus Dei.

As a reaction, the anarchists had called for a non-violent demonstration on Friday, starting at 20:00 p.m. (UCT+1) in front of city hall of the Flemish university town near Brussels. One of the protesters, who wished to remain anonymous, told Wikinews that the protest was mainly because the squatters were filled with indignation by the way the eviction took place. He also criticised the hypocrisy of the town mayor and politicians in the way they treated the squatters. Several media outlets reported speculation this week that some cases of arson were a retribution to the eviction of the Villa Squattus Dei.

The police had completely cordoned off the Great Market square with barb wire fences. All pubs were closed and the preparation for a festival taking place the next day on the square, were delayed. Well over 100 squatters, anarchists and supporters gathered next to the Great Market. The Flemish radio- and television station VRT reports that prior to the beginning of the demonstration, 10 people were already arrested.

The protesters marched through the city’s main streets. At a students house, which according to the squatters belongs to Opus Dei, the protesters threw paint, and a window got broken. During the demonstration, mayor Louis Tobback and alderman Brepoels responsible for housing, the police and Opus Dei were disparaged with slogans which translate to “You can’t evacuate ideals, fuck the police, squatting continues” and “Opus Dei get lost, Tobback go to your grave.”

The police blocked the crowd’s passage to the Court building, but besides a little pushing the demonstration was non-violent up to that point. A police helicopter started tracking the demonstration from the air.

On the Fish Market square, the police were pelted with stones and fireworks. A cameraman from VRT was hit by one of the stones and sustained a minor head injury. A little further down the street, some demonstrators started pushing an officer, and the police used their batons on the assailants, which they arrested.

Since the passage to the city centre was again blocked, the squatters led the protesters to a nearby park to get some rest and regroup. From there, the demonstration moved up a hill, and to the nearby ring road. The police could not prevent the crowd to get onto the busy road, stopping the traffic in both directions. The police decided to take decisive action, with police cars storming in, and officers chasing the scattered crowd through the nearby bushes of the nearby abbey. Dozens of protesters were arrested.

Via dark muddy forest roads, what was left over of the squatters and anarchists ended up near the canal harbour, where some of them decided to hide in another squat, an empty house and hangar.

As nearby inhabitants gathered, police reinforcements from several nearby cities arrived in front of the squat house. According to VRT journalists on the scene, some 250 officers pulled an extra shift that day.

Around 22:40 p.m. the police gave their first order to the squatters to evacuate the house. The area around the canal was completely sealed off. Some of the protesters were still among the crowd watching the police force, and the police arrested several more teenage protesters.

Meanwhile, the police shifted their actions to the city centre, where they hoped to arrest several groups who took part in the protest. All night long, police cars drove around in the city centre looking for anarchists and squatters.

Around 23:30 p.m. the squatters were still in their hideout near the canal, but the police force started leaving. There were only a few dozen protesters left in the squat, and the procedure to get a court order to evacuate them from the house hadn’t started yet, according to the Chief Constable on the scene.

This morning around 11:00 a.m., the only trace of the squatters left was graffiti on the squat and a flag with anarchist symbols and the words “squat the city”.

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How To Choose The Right Party Rentals In Lynchburg Va

Author: U5M4mh Posted under: Bean Bags

byAlma Abell

Whether you are hosting a backyard wedding celebration, corporate event, birthday party academy awards or a graduation ceremony, you will find party rentals to be extremely convenient in supplying you with everything you need. The items supplied by party rentals include tent tops, linens, tabletops, tables, chairs, china and flatware among others.

Regardless of your event being large or small, party rentals can significantly influence the success of such an event. This is because the majority of the party rentals will handle your party with a passion, which is crucial since party supplies form the backbone of every single event. Below are some tips for selecting the right Party Rentals in Lynchburg VA.

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* Consider the quality: You should never compromise on the quality of the products being supplied by party rentals; ensure to select top-quality products that won’t end up embarrassing you. Your prospective service provider should also supply you with multiple services, including table rentals, chair rentals, linen rentals and tent rentals among others. Receiving all these services at a single location will significantly reduce your budget.

* Consider the products with different varieties: Avoid following the usual routine and choose a variety to make your party unique and unforgettable. Creative designs and ideas will leave your guests amazed and impressed at your uniqueness.

* Enhance the mood in your event by renting unusual items like dance floors, cotton candy machines, popcorn machines and amazing China among others. You should, however, avoid renting unnecessary items for they will cost you.

* Search for competitive deals: Organizing any large scale event will often require a lot of budgets. You may save yourself substantial amounts of money by searching for good deals. Only contact party rentals that offer discounted prices on bulk items.

* Make the deal well in advance: This will allow sufficient time for your rental company to prepare the various products you require. This is especially essential when planning a huge event like a wedding.

The importance of getting a company that provides multiple services cannot be overemphasized. Ensure that your prospective rental company also provides catering equipment as every occasion will often involve food. Contact Amazement Square Children’s Museum for the best Party Rentals in Lynchburg VA.

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