December 10, 2023

iNews Briefs & Community Events

Community Events

MAY 21

Humane Society Pub Quiz

The Humane Society Pub Quiz is Thursday (21 May) at 7pm at Fidel Murphy’s.

John Gray High School Year 11 PTA Meeting

John Gray High School Year 11 parents & students are invited to John Gray’s information meeting concerning the transition to year 12 on Tuesday (21 Apr) at 5.30pm in the school hall

MAY 22

Water Authority Work On Bodden Town Road

The Water Authority is doing roadwork along Bodden Town Road. Portions will be closed from 9am until 4pm daily. All other traffic will be diverted around the work area via Anton Bodden Drive.

MAY 23

Chill Out for Exam Time

Exam time is approaching and many young students are overwhelmed and anxious. Lifestyles invites you to a chill-out mindfulness-based stretch and relaxation session at the South Sound Community Center on Saturday, May 23rd. – 12:30 – 1:45 pm.

This is a specially designed relaxation session for releasing stressful feelings about exams and creating a relaxed and positive view of exams. A special once-a-year offer at exam time…$5.00 per student. Please let us know if you plan to attend. Drop in at last minute also welcome. Please bring a large beach towel.

MAY 26

Conservation Council Meeting 26 May 2015

The National Conservation Council will hold a general meeting on Tuesday May 26th, 2015, from 2pm to 5pm in the ground floor meeting room (1038) of the Government Administration Building (Grand Cayman). This meeting is open to observers from the public. The Agenda of the meeting is available on the Department of Environment’s website:

MAY 28

Cayman Islands Facility Management Association meeting

The Cayman Islands Facility Management Association would like to invite you to a regular meeting on May 28 at Camana Bay. Please accept the invite to RSVP for this meeting. Guests are always welcome.

Date:     May 28, 2015 Time: 9am-11am

Location:   The Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort

Regular Meeting before and networking afterwards

Admission: Free


Financial assistance for children age lowered by Cayman Islands minister

Cayman Islands Education Minister Tara Rivers has lowered the age for which families that rely on financial assistance to send their children to school. The age requirement will now be 3 years instead of 3 years and six months.


LG’s leather-clad G4 flagship goes on sale this week

iNewsB lg-g4-rollout-2015-05-18-01By Steve Dent From engadget

LG is super-excited about the leather used in making its G4 (judging by the video), and hopes you are too as it goes on sale this week. We certainly liked the new flagship, especially the screen, f/1.8 camera and battery life, though we found the style on the non-leather model a bit dull. It ticks the spec boxes too, with expandable memory, a 5.5-inch quad HD “quantum” display and a 64-bit Snapdragon 808 six-core CPU. Unfortunately for US denizens, the G4 begins its rollout in Hong Kong, then hits Turkey, Russia and Singapore before arriving stateside. LG still hasn’t confirmed the price, but it’s rumored to be around $600 — about the same as Samsung’s non-curvy Galaxy S6.

For more and video:


PetroCaribe facility to be renamed after Hugo Chavez

From Dominica News Online

The PetroCaribe Dominica Plant, which is presently known as the Waitikubuli Storage Facility, will on June 29th 2015 renamed in honor of the late Venezuelan President, Hugo Chavez.

Minister responsible for PetroCaribe, Reginald Austrie made that announcement at the 10th Anniversary of the PetroCaribe Agreement media launch held at the office in Jimmit on Monday.

Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit and late President Chavez signed the PetroCaribe Energy Cooperation Agreement on June 29th, 2005, which provide Dominica with liquid petroleum gas, gasoline and diesel at a discounted rate.

“I look forward really to the activities of the 29th when we will be renaming the plant from Waitikubuli Storage Facility to the Hugo Chavez Storage Facility, which in recognition of the effort and the hard work that President Chavez has put into the programme,” Austrie stated.

Austrie noted that Chavez’s work, through PetroCaribe, is seen not only in Dominica but throughout the Caribbean and Latin America “where his vision was to see an integrated, united people…”

Austrie wished the PetroCaribe program well and said it will receive the full support of the government “to ensure that we can make PetroCaribe the success that it has to be and to bring the relief and benefit to all the people of Dominica all the time.”

Chavez died on March 5, 2013.

For more:


CONCACAF and QUOIKOS Present Gold Cup 2015 T-Shirt Design Competition

Contest open to all; winner to earn $4000 cash prize

Miami (Tuesday, May 19, 2015) – The Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) and QUOIKOS, an interactive artistic platform, presented today an open competition to design the Gold Cup 2015 T-shirt.

The contest, offering a $4000 cash prize to the winner, challenges fans and artists alike to create a T-shirt design for the highly anticipated Gold Cup 2015, to be played in July of this year in 14 stadiums and 13 cities across the United States and Canada.

The “Gold Cup 2015 T-Shirt” challenge is open to everyone. The winner will receive the first produced T-Shirt in addition to the cash prize.

The contest runs from April 15, 2015 to June 5, 2015, at noon ET. For more details please visit

Taking place every two years, the Gold Cup is the official national team championship of the region, routinely drawing capacity crowds and millions of television viewers across the region.

Featuring the highest-level players from across the confederation, the tournament includes the three previous Gold Cup champions – Canada (1 Gold Cup), Mexico (6), and the U.S. (5) – as well as the top finishers from the most recent Central American and Caribbean championship tournaments.

The twelve competing national teams have already qualified for this year’s tournament. Canada, Costa Rica, Cuba, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Panama, Trinidad & Tobago and the United States, in alphabetical order, will compete for the Confederation Crown this July.


Caribbean Governments urged to increase funding for STEM programmes

By Jasmine Nelson From Atlanta BlackStar

Caribbean governments are being urged to increase funding to boost the delivery of science and technical education in the region.

Educators and other stakeholders attending the three-day Second International Conference on Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) in the Caribbean, which wrapped up in Montego Bay on Friday, have called for Caribbean governments to increase funding to integrate science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) into TVET at all levels in education.

This comes against the background of research that shows 70 per cent of new jobs will require expertise in one or more STEM disciplines.

The educators and stakeholders have also recommended that TVET programmes among all TVET providers be strengthened; partnership and collaboration among TVET institutions and bodies in the Caribbean be improved, as well as acceptance of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) qualifications framework.

They also want better facilitation of opportunities for entrepreneurship and apprenticeship to match ‘thinking’ with innovative ‘action’.

The comments have emerged as Education Minister Ronald Thwaites announced on the final day of the conference that by the end of the 2016-2017 academic year, each student will have to sit a vocational subject to qualify for graduation


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Elon Musk fears Google will build ‘a fleet of robots capable of destroying mankind’

iNews b android-robots-everywhereBy Brad Reed From BGR

Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk is the furthest thing from a Luddite technophobe we can imagine, but he has nonetheless raised some very legitimate worries about the dangers of artificial intelligence. The Washington Post this week pointed out another fascinating tidbit from Ashlee Vance’s upcoming book on Musk’s life and career in which it’s revealed that Musk is particularly worried about what the company run by his friend Larry Page is working on.

According to the book, Musk is scared that Page and Google could build “a fleet of artificial-intelligence-enhanced robots capable of destroying mankind.” He doesn’t think this is Page’s intention, of course, but he notes that Page could instead “produce something evil by accident.”

This isn’t that crazy of a concern. Along with Musk, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and famed physicist Stephen Hawking have also fretted about the massive potential dangers posted by artificial intelligence. When three of the smartest people in the world are worried about something, it’s probably a good idea to actually be worried about it.

What’s more, we know Google has been investing a lot of money into robotics over the past few years by buying up robotics firms such as Boston Dynamics and Meka to produce robots that can, among other things, outrun the world’s fastest humans. If that doesn’t sound like a recipe for disaster, we don’t know what does.

Vance’s book is called Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future and it will release in hardcover next week on May 19th.

For more:


Canada gives millions for Caricom judicial reform

By Shane Jitta From Heritageradiott

The Canadian government is providing 19.2 million Canadian dollars to help reform the justice sector in Caribbean Community countries.

Assistance in drafting legislation to further regional integration and economic growth, more legislative protection of vulnerable groups against discrimination, training of mediators to assist parties in solving disputes to avoid long and expensive court proceedings, and a programme for sensitizing ordinary people about their rights under the law are among the benefits promised under the Improved Access to Justice in the Caribbean project being funded under an agreement with the Cave Hill Campus of the University of the West Indies.

The five-year regional justice sector reform project is designed to address deficiencies in the justice sector in CARICOM, outside of those that are directly related to the judiciary and the courts.

For more:


US Virgin Islands official to prison for bribery, extortion

From The New Zealand Herald

CHARLOTTE AMALIE, U.S. Virgin Islands (AP) ” A former official with the legislature of the U.S. Virgin Islands has been sentenced to prison in a corruption case.

Louis “Lolo” Willis was sentenced Thursday to five years in prison by U.S. District Court Judge Curtis Gomez in St. Thomas. A jury convicted Willis of bribery and extortion in November.

Willis was executive director of the legislature from 2009-2012. The position gave him oversight over the renovation of the legislature’s building. Federal prosecutors said he accepted bribes totaling at least $13,000 to help contractors secure $350,000 in work on the project.

The 57-year-old Willis denied wrongdoing. At his trial, his lawyer argued that he had approved contracts without the required review to complete the renovation more efficiently.

For more:


Dominican Republic holds stadium safety course

SAN CRISTOBAL, Dominican Republic – The Federación Dominicana de Fútbol (FEDOFUTBOL) and the Liga Dominicana de Fútbol Banco Popular (LDF) – with the support of CONCACAF — kicked off a stadium safety course on Thursday at the Project Goal facilities.

The three-day program is designed to provide the instruction necessary to stage football matches in a secure environment, a central component of any effectively managed event.

In his address to the attendees, CONCACAF Director of Development Hugo Salcedo emphasized the importance of enhancing protective methods and implementing preventive measures. He commended the leadership of the federation and the league for conducting the course, adding that the organizations can become working examples for the Caribbean region.

Victor Hugo Estrada, the Central American Football Union’s director of competitions and development, will share his expertise in stadium security at the conference for league administrators, stadium managers and security staff.

Also attending the opening were Osiris Guzman (President, FEDOFUTBOL); Felix Ledesma (Director, LDF); Ramon Sanchez (Director of Development, FEDOFUTBOL); and Jose Esteban Martinez (Director, Referees Commission).


T&T Opposition legislators to end boycott of Parliament


PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, May 17, CMC – Opposition members of the People’s National Movement (PNM) will return to Parliament on Friday putting a temporary end to their non-participation in the legislative chamber following the suspension of their leader Dr. Keith Rowley earlier this month.

PNM chairman Franklin Khan, speaking to reporters after the party’s General Council meeting on Saturday, said that the move to return is strategic and would prevent a move by the coalition government to move to have the seats declared vacant.

Parliamentarians who miss six consecutive sittings of Parliament without leave of absence could have their seats declared vacant.

But Khan said the opposition legislators would return to their boycott until Parliament is prorogued on June 17 because of the unlawful and vindictive suspension” of Rowley.

“That decision still stands, however, as you would realise the UNC (United National Congress) has been keeping two sittings (of Parliament) per week now instead of one, on a Wednesday and a Friday, only for them to invoke the six consecutive absents from Parliament without the Speaker’s permission to invoke the decision to declare the seats vacant,” Khan said.

Khan said in addition, Friday will be private members day, when opposition legislators could table motions for debate and the PNM intends to file a motion on the “contentious and scandalous SouthWest Soldado project.

“That is tabled for debate so we will attend Parliament this Friday coming, Friday 22nd May, to debate our motion because that is really Opposition Day and debunk this whole foolishness that they feel they setting trap for us to miss six successive sittings,” he said.

Khan said after the May 22 sitting there will be no more than six sittings until Parliament is prorogued “save and except if they decide to keep a session every day of the week”.

“And knowing them they may well do that but it will look ridiculous and scandalous to the population,” Khan said.

For more:


Samsung’s iPhone nightmare is far from over, and now it’s affecting Google

iNewsB iphone-6-plus-321By Chris Smith From BGR

One of the factors that contributed to Samsung’s weak quarters last year is the iPhone 6 family of smartphones. Apple sold a record-breaking number of handsets in 2014 at the expense of rivals, with a staggering 74.4 million iPhones having been sold during the Christmas quarter. Now, it looks like the iPhone 6 buying frenzy is far from over.

As analysts from Citi Research and UBS have observed in research notes obtained by Business Insider, Apple is still selling an increasing number of iPhone 6 units — far more than expected at this time of year. With every year’s iPhone, sales tend to fall steadily following the launch quarter, but Apple continues to move a huge number of iPhone 6 models.

Most disturbingly for rivals, it looks like Apple is converting more Android users to iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus rather than first convincing existing iPhone users to upgrade.

Citi’s Jim Suva said that the iPhone 6 is the first iPhone in years that will have a more meaningful impact on smartphone market share, becoming an increasingly annoying problem for both Google and Samsung.

According to Citi, the iPhone 6 is the No.1 phone in U.S. and China, which are obviously major smartphone markets for Apple, Google and Samsung. However, the phone has convinced just 20% of existing iPhone users to upgrade, suggesting 80% of buyers are new smartphone users or are converting from other platforms.

The note suggests that 50% of Apple’s iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus buyers are coming from other brands, mostly Android. Of the previous Android owners who purchased a new iPhone, it appears most of them have ditched Samsung handsets in favor of the iPhone 6.

Research also shows that about 12% of the existing iPhone customer base gets a new iPhone each quarter, suggesting the iPhone 6 might keep selling rather well in the near future, and steal even more market share from Google and Samsung.

UBS analyst Steven Milunovich says that Apple’s customer retention rate has gone down to 78% from 84%, but that’s still the highest percentage in the business, followed by Samsung with around 50%.

For more:


Former U.S. int’l Friedel to retire

iNewsB FEAT-BradFriedel-060602vPortugalBBrad Friedel (pictured) in action for the USA during its historic 2002 FIFA World Cup win over Portugal. (Photo: Mexsport)

LONDON — Former U.S. international goalkeeper Brad Friedel, who backstopped the Americans to a surprising quarterfinal finish at the 2002 FIFA World Cup, announced his retirement from the game on Thursday, effective at the end of the season.

Friedel, 43, made his announcement on the Tottenham Hotspur website. He had been a member for the English Premier League side for the past four years, although he took a reserve role behind No. 1 keeper Hugo Loris in 2012.

“I’m incredibly proud of what I’ve achieved in my career,” said Friedel. “When I first started the journey I never imagined it would be this long, playing 23 seasons in total and representing some incredible clubs.”

The 82-time capped Friedel will become an analyst and co-commentator for Fox Sports and will also be Tottenham’s club ambassador in the USA.

“One thing I will miss is that day-to-day interaction with the staff and players,” he continued. “There really is nothing like it but my 44th birthday is here so I think it is a good time to call it a day.

“I’ve got some wonderful opportunities in front of me working for Fox TV and I’m completing my pro license. I’ve had a tremendous time here and met a lot of great people along the way.”

Some of his most memorable moments came against archrival Mexico in two separate international competitions.

At the 1995 Copa America quarterfinals in Uruguay, Friedel turned in a stellar performance in the penalty-kick shootout as the Americans prevailed in the tie-breaker, 4-1, after playing to a scoreless draw.

At the 2002 FIFA World Cup, he helped an injury-ravaged USA register a stunning 2-0 triumph over the Mexicans in the Round of 16 in Jeonju, Korea. The Americans reached the quarterfinals, losing to Germany, 1-0.

Friedel played 38 times in European club competitions and competed in two CONCACAF Gold Cups (1998, 2000).

His extensive playing resume included stints with the Columbus Crew (USA), Newcastle United, Liverpool, Blackburn Rovers and Aston Villa (all England), Galatasaray (Turkey) and Brondby (Denmark).


Google researchers create amazing timelapses from public photos

iNewsB timelapseBy Steve Dent From engadget

There are a zillion digital photos in the public domain and scientists have just figured out something very cool to do with them. A team from Google and the University of Washington have developed a fully automated way to create time-lapse videos of popular tourists landmarks using images from Flickr, Picasa and other sites. Here’s how it works: first, the researchers sorted some 86 million photos by geographic location, looking for widely snapped landmarks. Next, the photos were ordered by date and warped so that all had a matching viewpoint. Lastly, each photo was color-corrected to have a similar appearance, resulting in uniform time-lapse videos.

The videos aren’t just breathtaking, but also illuminating. For instance, they show glaciers receding, waterfalls evolving and skyscrapers sprouting (above), making them useful tools for geologists or builders. The science that went into the time-lapses is also interesting, as researchers combined various techniques in warping, stabilization and color normalizing to make it work. Many sequences contain over 1,000 images and took around six hours to render on a single computer. The best part is that even though it’s a fun form of crowdsourcing, it doesn’t require participants to do anything but be tourists.

For more and video go to:


Massive fire breaks out in Kolkata’s New Market area

From The Siasat Daily

Kolkata, May 18:

A massive fire broke out in Kolkata’s New Market area on Lindsay Street on Monday.

The Fire Services ADG Sanjoy Mukherjee stated that 20 fire tenders were rushed to the spot to douse the fire.

“The primary objective is to douse the fire. Twenty fire tenders are at work and the fire is almost doused,” he said.

“The fire started out small perhaps why it was undetected and the shops had lots of vegetables and paper plates which is why it spread so fast,” a witness told ANI.

For more:


Celtic chief Dermot Desmond in peace deal over £79million resort development in the Caribbean

JS26767071By Lauren Crooks From Daily Record

The Hoops powerbroker’s luxury Pink Sands Club was due to open last year with guests expected to pay up to £13,000 a night.

Billionaire Celtic supremo Dermot Desmond has struck a peace deal to end costly delays to the opening of his Caribbean resort.

The Hoops powerbroker’s luxury Pink Sands Club was due to open last year with guests expected to pay up to £13,000 a night.

But the £79million development – on Canouan Island in St Vincent and the Grenadines – was left sitting empty amid reports of a disagreement between Desmond, 64, and co-investor Antonio Saladino.

Even the island’s prime minister Ralph Gonsalves’s attempts to settle the dispute were unsuccessful.

But last week, the resort’s manager revealed that Desmond and Saladino had settled their differences.

Jeff Morgan said: “The project for the continuous development of the beautiful island of Canouan to be the best resort, hotel and marina in the Caribbean is progressing well with the full support of all the ­stakeholders involved.”

Golf course on the island

It was reported that Desmond’s private equity firm International Investment and Underwriting Ltd (IIU) had taken on top London lawyers to take action against Canouan Resorts Development (CRD), of which Saladino is chairman.

Barrister Robert Anderson QC, of Blackstone Chambers, and solicitor Barnaby Stueck, of Jones Day, were named as lawyers acting for Desmond’s firm. But yesterday IIU said: “There is no legal case.”

A spokeswoman from Blackstone Chambers said: “I regret that we are not able to comment.” Stueck also declined to comment.

The Pink Sands Club boasts 24 suites, two penthouses and 20 ­villas. It has its own golf course, a luxurious spa and four restaurants and is located on the island’s untouched Godahl Beach.

The project, which has been in development for more than three years, included extending the island’s runway so it could accommodate large private jets. Desmond bought a 50 per cent share in the resort in 2010.

He is said to have been very particular about the finer details, testing out 29 salt and pepper grinders before choosing one that suited the resort best and building a model suite for focus-group guests to test out for several months.

The Pink Sands Resort in the Caribbean

Swiss-Italian banker Saladino and CRD were given a 99-year lease to develop an international resort on the tiny island – located between Barbados and St Lucia – in 1990.

The company turned dirt tracks into roads, installed electricity to the island and residents’ houses and provided clean water for the first time.

But the disagreements have had a knock-on effect on islanders, with nearly 1000 staff being laid off.

Desmond, who is Celtic’s major shareholder, already co-owns the Sandy Lane Hotel in Barbados with JP McManus and racehorse billionaire John Magnier.

IMAGE: SNS Group Dermot Desmond

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