An ‘invisible’ fuselage will allow passengers to look through the body of the plane, down onto cities or up at the stars. The concept plane incorporates streamlined engines into the fuselage. Airbus has revealed ideas for a concept plane with streamlined engines and the ability for its fuselage to become invisible.At the push of a button the captain would send an electrical pulse through a hi-tech ceramic skin making the main body of the plane see-through, Der Spiegel reported.The futuristic design would allow travellers to look down on cities and landscapes below, News.com.au reported.The concept is reminiscent of James Bond’s Aston Martin Vanquish (renamed ‘Vanish’) in the 2002 film, Die Another Day. In the film, the car could project images of its surroundings to appear invisible.Researchers at Airbus said the design would allow travellers to see through the body of the plane, directly below onto cities and landscapes, or gaze up and around at the starry heavens. The sensation would be that of floating unassisted through the sky, they said.”Passengers in an airplane like this would experience flight in a completely new way,” Airbus’ head of research and technology, Axel Krein, said.The proposal is one of a number of plans being considered by engineers at the European aerospace giant.Also in the works from Mr Krein’s team is an aircraft skin that can repair itself in the event of cracks or breaches and streamline engines that are embedded in the plane’s fuselage rather than attached to its wings.”We told our engineers to give their imaginations free rein. What emerged were completely realistic visions of flight in the year 2050,” Mr Krein said.”Our people are grounded in reality, after all. And most of the necessary technology already exists.”What are some other concepts you’d like to ‘see’ adopted by aircraft manufacturers? Source = e-Travel Blackboard: C.C
The economy added 165,000 jobs in April–rebounding from a weak report for March–and the unemployment rate dropped to 7.5.percent, its lowest level since December 2008, the “”Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)””:http://www.bls.gov/news.release/archives/empsit_05032013.pdf reported Friday. Economists had forecast payrolls would grow by 153,000, and that the unemployment rate would remain at 7.6 percent.[IMAGE]Payroll growth for March, originally reported at 88,000, was revised upward to 138,000, and February was revised to 332,000 from 268,000.Average weekly hours fell to 34.4–the equivalent of job losses–while average hourly earnings rose.Compared with the disappointing report for March, the April report showed very few negatives. The labor force–the sum of employment and unemployment–rose for the month with employment increasing 293,000 and unemployment falling 83,000. Unemployment, as used in this report, is a defined term including individuals meeting three tests: out-of-work, available-for-work, and looking-for-work.The labor force participation rate remained at 63.3 percent, low by historical standards. It had been 66.0 percent before the recession began in December 2007. The current rate is the lowest since December 1978, in part reflecting an increase in school enrollment, which could affect the “”available-for-work”” test.The employment-population ratio, a broad measure of the employment status of all those over 16, rose to 58.6 percent, but is still far below 62.7 percent in December 2007. The inverse of the employment-population ratio is a crude unemployment measure, suggesting 41.4 percent of all those over 16 do not have jobs, without adjustment for students or otherwise not seeking jobs.The net increase in payroll jobs came despite a loss of 11,000 government jobs–8,000 federal jobs, including 3,500 postal jobs. Local governments shed 2,000 jobs as state payrolls contracted by 1,000.Most industry sectors showed gains, but the number of construction jobs fell a net 6,000. Most of the job losses involved non-residential construction. [COLUMN_BREAK] Despite a drop in builder confidence, the number of residential construction jobs–including specialty contractors–increased 13,300. The information sector dropped 9,000 jobs in April, primarily in the movie and sound recording industry, which could have regional impacts on the coasts.Manufacturing jobs, according to the report, were flat in April after growing by a scant 2,000 in March, suggesting an impact of federal budget sequester cuts on defense-related employment, though the report does not contain a specific line item for defense related manufacturing or employment.Professional and business services added 73,000 jobs in April, including almost 31,000 temp jobs, which are often considered an entry point to permanent employment. Temp jobs though can also reflect a lack of confidence on the part of employers.The financial sector added 9,000 jobs, most of which were credit-related positions, such as underwriters, on the eve of the home-buying season. That said, the number of real estate jobs contracted by almost 2,000.The weak spot in the report was the cut in the average workweek, which slipped back from 34.6 hours last month. Cutting hours is a technique used by some businesses to reduce payroll spending while at the same time keeping trained workers available for a rebound in the economy. The reduction in hours though–despite an increase in average hourly earnings–reduces average weekly earnings, which fell by $3.29 in April and will have an impact on consumer demand.Reducing average weekly hours could also reflect a shift to part-time employment which rose 107,000 in April in a run-up to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act next January.With the reduction in hours and average weekly earnings, aggregate wage income fell in April. Wages, on average, represent about 55 percent of total personal income, which fuels personal consumption spending.The continued drop in the unemployment rate, which has fallen for three straight months, has added significance with the Federal Reserve having said the target fed funds rate would remain at its historic low, 0 to ├âÔÇÜ├é┬╝ percent, at least until the unemployment rate fell below 6.5 percent. The Fed also set an inflation target for keeping rates low and continuing its program of purchasing mortgage securities and investing in U.S. Treasury securities. Inflation has remained tame since the Fed announced its plans for reversing course on monetary policy.The number of persons out of work for 27 weeks or longer–“”long term unemployed””–fell 258,000 to 4,353,000 the lowest level since May 2009 but the number of person unemployed 15 to 26 weeks rose 230,000._Hear Mark Lieberman every Friday on P.O.T.U.S. radio, Sirius-XM 124, at 6:20 a.m. Eastern._ Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Bureau of Labor Statistics Investors Jobs Labor Department Lenders & Servicers Mark Lieberman Payrolls Processing Service Providers Unemployment 2013-05-03 Mark Lieberman Unemployment Rate Down to 7.5% as Payrolls Increase by 165K May 3, 2013 398 Views Share in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing
The record-high tourist arrivals, which rose an annual 15 per cent over the past 7-month period edging 2 million is a credit positive for Cypriot lenders, Moody’s Investors Service said.The increase in tourist arrivals this year, accompanied by a 22 per cent rise in revenue in January to May, helps Cypriot banks, plagued with a mountain of non-performing loans, improve their asset quality and find new lending opportunities, the rating company said in an emailed statement on Sunday.“Bank of Cyprus, for instance, disbursed €39m of new loans to hotels and restaurants in the first quarter of 2017, accounting for 8 per cent of new lending, and sold €1m of hotel property over the same quarter, generating net proceeds 17 per cent above book value”.The largest Cypriot lender’s real estate management unit is likely to find better opportunities to sell five foreclosed hotels worth €73m in the current industry environment, Moody’s said, adding that “the tourism industry’s revival is having positive ripple effects across the economy”.With tourism’s contribution to employment seen at around 7 per cent of the workforce and loans to companies of the hospitality sector accounting for 10 per cent of total credit, the improved performance of the tourism sector helped boost cashflows, reduce the unemployment rate to 10.8 per cent in June, and a second quarter growth rate of 3.5 per cent, the rating company said.Still, as the tourism sector is booming, non-performing loans in the accommodation and food services sector dropped 33 per cent to €1bn in March, compared to May 2014, accounting for 48 per cent of total exposures, Moody’s said.You May LikeDr. Marty3 Warning Signs Your Dog Is Crying For HelpDr. MartyUndoTruthFinder People Search SubscriptionOne Thing All Liars Have in Common, Brace YourselfTruthFinder People Search SubscriptionUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndo Pensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoCypriot tycoon launches ‘Bank of Cannabis’UndoThree arrested in connection with hotel theftsUndoby Taboolaby Taboola
21Sep Third grade reading proficiency legislation approved by House, Senate Categories: News Legislation to help improve reading proficiency in kindergarten through third-grade students was approved by the state House and Senate today, advancing House Bill 4822 to Gov. Rick Snyder for his consideration.“Our state is currently 41st in the nation in fourth-grade literacy. We desperately need to improve our literacy outcomes for Michigan students,” said Rep. Amanda Price, chair of the House Committee on Education. “House Bill 4822 puts in place the interventions that will improve our reading scores.“This legislation strengthens the literacy education for every student in the state of Michigan,” said Rep. Price, R-Park Township. “The ability to read cannot be overstated in its importance, especially in early education. This bill will help the parents, teachers, administrators and especially the students to work together for our state’s future.”House Bill 4822 creates a proactive literacy system designed to help k-3 students become proficient in English Language Arts on their third-grade assessment before entering fourth grade. Studies show that if students are not proficient in reading by the conclusion of third grade, they are four times less likely to graduate from high school.The system includes regular literacy screenings to evaluate and identify a k-3 student’s reading deficiencies, additional one-on-one instruction between school personnel and students, and increased classroom time dedicated to reading. The legislation emphasizes parental notification and involvement throughout the process, including developing with teachers a “read at home” program with students identified as reading deficient and the potential to file a “good cause exemption” with a district’s superintendent to advance a student to fourth grade.The legislation is financially supported within the state budget, as the 2015-16 education budget allocates $25 million for the implementation of measures to increase literacy for Michigan’s early elementary school students.Today’s vote follows the approval Tuesday by an education conference committee involving three members each of the House and Senate. The panel was the most recent step after the state Senate approved a modified version in late March, with which the House did not concur and allowed for a review before the conference committee. The House previously passed HB 4822 in October 2015.Rep. Price originally introduced earlier version of this legislation in October 2013.If signed into law, HB 4822 would be effective for the 2017-18 school year, starting with kindergarten students beginning that year, and possible retention will not be considered until the 2019-20 school year.
11Jan Rep. Calley sworn in on House floor State Rep. Julie Calley was today sworn into office on the floor of the Michigan House by Chief Justice Stephen Markman. She was joined by her husband, Lt. Gov. Brian Calley, her brother, Doug Powell, and her mother, Margie Powell.Rep Calley said her legislative priorities will be employment, increasing opportunities for skilled trades training and enhancing public education in the state of Michigan.Rep. Calley represents the people of Barry County and part of Ionia County including the townships of Boston, Campbell, Danby, Keene, Lyons, North Plains, Odessa, Orange, Portland, Ronald, Sebewa, most of Berlin Township, part of Eaton Township, and the City of Portland.The 99th Michigan Legislature began session today following the ceremonial swearing in.To contact her office, people may call (517) 373-0842 or email JulieCalley@house.mi.gov.### Categories: Calley News,Calley Photos
Categories: News,Roberts News State Representative Brett Roberts today said he will continue to support reforms protecting retirement benefits for police, firefighters and other municipal employees as bills move through the Michigan Legislature.“Our first responders provide an irreplaceable service to our communities, and we can’t take their sacrifices for granted,” said Roberts (R-Charlotte). “This issue deserves plenty of careful attention. We must make sure we find the best way to preserve retirement benefits and public services.”Roberts voted in favor of reform legislation related to municipal employee retirement plans last week. Roberts said he will continue to support the package as it progresses through the Legislature, as long as it remains limited to implementing recommendations of Gov. Rick Snyder’s task force from earlier this year.Thanks in large part to residents making their opinions known to legislators, the bills solely focus on the task force recommendations. The legislation emphasizes information gathering and reporting to help each individual municipality determine the financial health of their retirement plans. In cases where retirement plans are financially stressed, a municipal stability board would be created to help local governments find their own solutions.The reforms set up a system to help guide local governments with underfunded plans to solid financial footing, so they can continue to pay for promised retiree benefits and public services.“I was proud to stand with 104 of my colleagues in support of police officers and fire fighters across the state,” Roberts said of last week’s House vote. “This package will ensure that municipalities have the information necessary to adequately fund pension and benefit obligations for our first responders, without the state forcing them into potential fiscally irresponsible decisions.”House Bill 5298 and its companion bills have been referred to the Senate for further consideration.### 11Dec Rep. Brett Roberts supports legislation to safeguard first responder retirement benefits
13Dec Rep. Allor: House votes to provide funding for Alpena, Oscoda water contamination State Rep. Sue Allor addresses her colleagues on the floor of the Michigan House of Representatives, urging them to support a funding proposal to address the emerging threat posed by a type of chemical contaminant recently discovered in groundwater in Alpena and Oscoda.State Rep. Sue Allor today praised her colleagues in the Michigan House of Representatives for approving funding to address the emerging threat posed by a type of chemical contaminant recently discovered in groundwater in Alpena and Oscoda.Allor, who serves on the House Appropriations Committee, said the $23.2 million allocation will provide testing, monitoring and technical assistance at more than a dozen sites across Michigan where per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) have been found in groundwater, including the former Wurtsmith Air Force Base in Oscoda and the Combat Readiness Training Center in Alpena.“I’m glad my colleagues in the Legislature recognize just how critical this issue is for the health, safety and welfare of all Michigan residents,” said Allor, of Wolverine. “This funding will help ensure that the state can respond quickly to reports of PFAS contamination, provide the testing needed to confirm contamination, and run mitigation efforts.”The funding will also pay for improvements to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality’s water testing laboratory, which is not currently equipped to test for PFAS.“Water samples now have to be shipped out of state for testing, which leaves Michigan families waiting as long as eight weeks to find out if their water is contaminated. We need to do better,” Allor said. “These improvements will allow samples to be processed right here in Michigan in a much more timely manner.”Allor, who was active in moving the supplemental budget bill to passage, said the legislation requires any private or public entity responsible for PFAS contamination, including the federal Department of Defense, to reimburse the state.The bill now goes to the governor for consideration.### Categories: Allor News
Categories: VanderWall News 23Oct Rep. VanderWall to represent Michigan on Great Lakes leadership committee State Rep. Curt VanderWall has been selected to serve as Michigan’s representative on the executive committee of the Great Lakes Legislative Caucus (GLLC).The GLLC is a nonpartisan group of lawmakers from the U.S. and Canada that focuses on issues and policy concerning the Great Lakes. All eight states and two Canadian provinces in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence basin are represented on the executive committee.“The health of the Great Lakes ecosystem is incredibly important to our way of life here in northern Michigan,” VanderWall said. “It is a privilege to be selected for this leadership role. I’m looking forward to sharing ideas with legislators from throughout the Great Lakes region, and working as a group to better address pollution, invasive species and habitat preservation.”VanderWall and the other GLLC leaders will direct the caucus’s activities over the next two years. The policy agenda will focus important issues such as water consumption, aquatic invasive species, toxic substances, nutrient pollution and coastal communities.Residents who have questions or concerns regarding the Great Lakes are welcome to call Rep. VanderWall’s office at (517) 373-0825 or email CurtVanderWall@house.mi.gov.###
Categories: Brann News West Michigan business owner wants to give students tools for successState Rep. Tommy Brann today testified in support of his plan to include free enterprise and entrepreneurship as a curriculum requirement for 8th grade social studies instruction.Brann, a restaurant owner in Wyoming, spoke of his personal experience that inspired this legislation.“When I was 19 my dad had me working in his business,” Brann said. “I was lucky to have that experience and gain skills that my fellow classmates didn’t – it led me to be the businessman I am today.”Under the newly proposed bill, the Michigan Department of Education would develop or adopt one or more model programs to be made available to school districts and public school academies. The program must include all of the following instruction:Business vocabulary, including entrepreneurship, free enterprise, business finance, goods and services and innovation;Entrepreneurs from Michigan and around the world;Action activities, including setting short-term and long-term goals;Business basics, including taxes for businesses and corporations, essential skills for business owners, and product and service-based business ideas; andCreating a student project-based business plan.Aimed at educating and providing students with the tools to open their own business, Brann said this initiative will ultimately give kids an understanding of how job creation works with the economy.“I just really believe in this idea,” Brann said of his proposed legislation. “If I can do it, there’s no reason why every single Michigan student doesn’t have the potential to do it too. I want to give kids the tools, and more importantly hope, that they can be an entrepreneur.”House Bill 5777 now waits for consideration by the House Education Reform Committee.### 06Dec Rep. Brann: We must teach our kids about jobs, entrepreneurship
Share15TweetShareEmail15 SharesFebruary 11, 2016; Wichita EagleThe Kansas Supreme Court ruled last Thursday that the state’s new school funding structure was unconstitutional and must be replaced by June 30, 2016. Without legislative changes, local school districts will not receive any state funding for the 2016-17 school year.In March, Kansas replaced its decades-old formula for allocating school funding with block grants they believed would satisfy the courts. The Wichita Eagle described the old system as “a complicated formula that included a base state aid amount per pupil plus ‘weightings’—extra money schools received for educating difficult-to-teach students such as limited-English, poor and at-risk populations.”The new system, enacted to satisfy a 2014 court ruling that found the existing system did not fulfill a requirement for equitable school funding, was challenged by “four school districts—Wichita, Hutchinson, Kansas City and Dodge City…saying it did not meet the state’s constitutional burden to provide support for public education.” The court found that the new funding approach did not provide equitable funding for all of Kansas’ school children:The legislature’s unsuccessful attempts to equitably, i.e., fairly, allocate resources among the school districts not only creates uncertainty in planning the 2016-2017 school year but also has the potential to interrupt the operation of Kansas’ public schools…we too must heed our duty to ensure Kansas students receive the education system guaranteed them by the Constitution. “If the educational process is to be disrupted, it will be because the demands of the Constitution cannot be further postponed.” […]Accordingly, the legislature’s chosen path during the 2016 session will ultimately determine whether Kansas students will be treated fairly and the schoolhouse doors will be open to them in August for the beginning of the 2016-2017 school year. The legislature’s choices will also dictate whether we may proceed to the final stage of this litigation, i.e., the sooner the legislature establishes a constitutional funding system, the sooner this case can be dismissed.In a brief response to this ruling, Governor Sam Brownback said, “Kansas has among the best schools in the nation and an activist Kansas Supreme court is threatening to shut them down. We will review this decision closely and work with the Legislature to ensure the continued success of our great Kansas schools.” Senate President Susan Wagle, R-Wichita, was more blunt: “The Supreme Court’s threat to close our schools is nothing more than a political bullying tactic and is an assault on Kansas families, taxpayers and elected appropriators,” she said in a statement. “We will not play their game but will instead do our best to provide a quality education for all Kansas students.“Speaking for the school districts who had challenged the new funding approach, Cynthia Lane, superintendent of the schools in Kansas City, Kansas, lauded the ruling. “Through this decision, the Supreme Court is making clear that the opportunity for a quality education must be available to all Kansas children, regardless of the ZIP code in which they live,” Lane said. “This is good news, not only for students in the Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools, but also for students and communities across the state.”The court has still before it a challenge to the actual amount of state funding, with the question being whether the total allocation made in the state budget provides sufficient funding to ensure educational equity. A ruling that that total school funding must be increased would be extremely problematic for the state’s Republican leadership, who are struggling to balance the budget after enacting significant tax cuts and not seeing the state’s economy growing to provide replacement revenues. Based on lower court rulings, the required additional amounts of state funding were “estimated to be about $54 million for the 2015 fiscal year and $73 million for the year ending June 30, said Robb, the attorney for the school districts.” For a state with a current budget that may have room for only a few million dollars of new expenditures, meeting any significant new funding requirements will be difficult.—Martin LevineShare15TweetShareEmail15 Shares
ShareTweet4ShareEmail4 SharesMobilização Nacional da Educação Zika Zero / Ministério do Desenvolvimento Social e Combate à FomeApril 19, 2016; USA TodayIn February, the Obama administration requested a $1.9 billion appropriation for federal activities to combat the dangers of the Zika virus, a mosquito-borne virus believed to increase the likelihood of microcephaly in infants born to infected mothers. (Zika has also been tied to other negative health outcomes for humans, but Zika is a recent enough public health issue that scientific data are still being collected.)Congress has not taken action on the president’s request, and Democratic legislators and the White House see Republicans playing politics with a public health crisis in the making. “That’s a significant problem, particularly when you consider that there’s no good reason that Congress hasn’t acted,” Obama Press Secretary Josh Earnest said. “And the opportunity to get ahead of this potentially serious situation is washing away. And that’s a significant problem.”Not surprisingly, Congressional Republicans have a different interpretation—good stewardship. They point out that the $1.9 billion request was uncharacteristically vague, with the amount being able to be shifted between federal agencies without Congressional oversight and with no expiration date for expending the funds. Quoted in USA Today, House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers said:So when the administration requested that $1.9 billion supplemental, which was just almost a slush fund across the government, the money could be used for any purpose. We said, “Look, we don’t do business that way. We appropriate the taxpayer’s dollars in a responsible, direct way, with details we can all understand.”Rogers has also pointed out that Congress has already authorized almost $600 million in this year’s federal budget to be reallocated to Zika-related projects. “My present information leads me to believe that that’s plenty of money for this fiscal year. We have five months left,” Rogers said.While it’s rare, Congress has been known to act quickly on appropriations related to public health. Even so, it rarely provides all funds requested and typically imposes fiscal year restrictions on when funds are either spent or reauthorized. At the same time, emergency public health appropriations need greater flexibility in allocation because priorities and initiatives make change quickly based on events and emerging science.The good news is that the administration updated its spending request last week to include more details Congress has been asking for. Our hope is that both sides will negotiate in good faith, allowing federal expenditures—with adequate oversight—to be made quickly.—Michael WylandShareTweet4ShareEmail4 Shares
Following its distribution deal for Sky Atlantic, Sky Deutschland has struck an agreement with Unitymedia for three additional channels.Under the deal, the Liberty Global-owned cable operator will take Sky Sport News HD, Sky Sport HD2 and Sky Cinema HD, taking the total number of Sky HD channels on the Unitymedia platform to five.
Global IPTV subscribers will triple between now and the end of 2017, driven in particular by growth in China, according to a new report.IPTV numbers will rise to 165 million by the end of 2017, up from 51 million at the end of 2011, according to Digital TV Research’s Global IPTV Forecasts.China will account for 47% of the 2017 total, up from 28% at the end of 2011, according to the report. Overall, the Asia Pacific region will account for 86 million of the 114 million new IPTV subscribers predicted to be added between 2011 and 2017.Global IPTV penetration is expected to grow from 3.7% last year to 10.8% by the end of 2017. IPTV revenues are expected to amount to US$21.3 billion (€17.3 billion) by that date, up from US$9.7 billion in 2011.The report predicts that China will be the global IPTV leader in 2017, with 77.2 million households, followed by the US with 14.4 million and India with 7.3 million. The European leaders will be Russia with 6.5 million and France with 6.4 million subscribers. Singapore will have the highest IPTV penetration, at 43%, followed by the UAE, Hong Kong and Slovenia.
Telecom Slovenije has added two new channels to its SiolTV pay TV platform.The Slovenian telco has launched Fox Movies and Orlando Kids channels on the service. Fox Movies airs the latest blockbusters and library titles from 20th Century Fox. Kids channel Orlando kids airs cartoons including Atomic Betty, Iron Man and Wolverine.
Multiscreen TV specialist QuickPlay Media has chosen Media Excel to provide video transcoding for its global multiscreen services.QuickPlay will use Media Excel’s Hero 5000 series platform to transcode content and provide MPEG-DASH and HEVC-centric solutions to its customers.QuickPlay’s OpenVideo managed service platform ingests content from more than 4,000 providers and optimizes content for more than 400 device types. The company will use Media Excel’s Hero Management System in conjunction with its OpenVideo Media Processor.“As a managed service provider, QuickPlay works with a number of market leading technologies in order to deliver the best end-to-end solution for our clients,” said Wayne Purboo, CEO of QuickPlay Media. “We selected Media Excel for its exceptional video quality, its ease of deployment, and extensive feature set, combined with their partnership approach.”
Toshiba’s new line of Ultra High Definition 4K TVs will support the new UHD 4K broadcast service from Asian satellite operator and pay TV provider SKY Perfect JSAT.Toshiba’s new Z Series of UHD TVs, due to launch this autumn, will use a system on a chip provided by media processing solutions firm ViXS Systems.The ViXS XCode 6400 can decode and display full UHD 4K content in 10-bit Rec 2020 format at 60 frames-per-second, supporting the SKY Perfect JSAT UHD 4K service.SKY Perfect JSAT’s 4K broadcast service has been live since June. The firm has a fleet of 16 satellites and also provides multi-channel pay TV services in Japan, where it has 3.5 million subscribers.
French supermarket giant Carrefour has launched an UltraViolet-enabled multi-platform TV service, Nolim Films, using an OTT platform provided by Saffron Digital.Nolim Films will enable customers to buy and rent TV and movies and is initially available on smartphone, tablet, television and computer. Content includes movies Gravity, Godzilla and Edge of Tomorrow, hit TV shows including Gotham, The Walking Dead and Arrow and local French content.Customers will be able to rent or buy UltraViolet and non-UltraViolet content which will be automatically added to their digital library. They can then stream the purchased content directly to their connected devices or downloaded for offline playback.Customers will also be able to redeem UltraViolet codes entitling them to free digital copies of movies they purchase on DVD or Blu-ray discs with the UltraViolet logo on their packages.“Our clients’ consumption habits are constantly evolving. With Nolim Films, we will address their expectations and new uses of video. This new offer is part of the brand’s digital strategy, which relies on the complementarity of our distribution channels,” said Noël Prioux, executive director of Carrefour France.Carrefour claims to have about 3,000 titles at launch, available for rental from €1.99 and from €4.99 for purchase. The company says it is the first to launch an UltraViolet service in France.Movies are available from four months after their theatrical release, with US series available one day after their US release.The service uses the OTT platform provided by Saffron Digital, including content preparation and management, storefront services, application design and development, a digital locker and UltraViolet integration, and a secure player.“We are delighted to be involved in the launch of such a monumental service. As well as offering its customers a new and exciting entertainment experience, Carrefour is securing its place as one of the world’s leading entertainment retailers. As one of the biggest UltraViolet services to launch in Europe, Nolim Films will no doubt be instrumental in driving digital media adoption throughout the region,” said Jason Keane, CEO of Saffron Digital.
Simon PollockExecutive search outfit Heidrick & Struggles has hired TV industry veteran Simon Pollock to develop the firm’s media and entertainment practice. Pollock was most recently was a partner at a boutique search firm specialising in media, communication and entertainment businesses. He previously served as senior vice-president at Media Audits International and vice-president and managing director EMEA and Asia at A+E Television Networks, where he was responsible for launching and managing their portfolio of channels. He has also worked as vice-president, sales at Sony Pictures Television International and director of sales for The Walt Disney Co.“Simon will prove a huge asset with his extensive experience in the media and entertainment, both in EMEA and internationally. As an industry veteran, he has an exceptionally strong media background and has held some very senior roles in this sector,” said Claire Babel, European regional managing partner of the global consumer markets practice at Heidrick & Struggles.
Digital Media Centre (DMC) has added A+E Networks-owned channel Blaze Italy to new virtualised playout platform.Blaze, which is available exclusively via Sky in Italy, is the third channel that A+E Networks has managed with DMC in Italy after Crime+Investigation and History.“DMC’s new fully virtualised platform has allowed us to increase our presence in the region, enabling us to deliver a wider range of dynamic, compelling, higher quality content to specific audiences,” said Sherin Salvetti, general manager of A+E Networks Italy.Blaze is distributed using DMC’s fully managed European fibre network. Its playout platform is designed to help broadcasters and content providers shrink time to market, reduce hardware requirements and keep control over their content.
Content security specialist Verimatrix has acquired Genius Digital’s MiriMON client data collection technology, along with the development team responsible for the product.The MiriMON technology has already been integrated within VErimatrix’s Verspective Operator Analytics platform and ViewRight Ultra downloadable app packages.As a part of Verspective, the technology provides real-time service quality and customer experience visibility at the device level, as well as enabling the Verspective platform to provide insight for next-generation video services, according to the company.Verimatrix said that this acquisition will enable a closer alignment between MiriMON and Verspective and its security foundations and give Verimatrix full control over the roadmaps for the core data collection technology and service dashboard displays.According to Verimatrix, clent devices offer a a detailed view of live and on-demand consumption, as well as subscriber/device interactions, complementing Verspective’s ability to extract data from services, CDNs and security and content management systems.Tom MunroThe Verspective client data collection technology enables a secure source of return path data for both linear and adaptive bitrate services to a scalable data collection resource that can either be cloud-based, virtualised or server-hosted, the company said.Along with the data collection technology, Verimatrix will add a new core analytics engineering team that will be based in a development center in Bristol in the UK.Verimatrix said it will continue its long-standing partnership with Genius Digital with a focus on expanding the applications of Genius Digital’s Insight and Analytics services, enabling both data-driven subscriber analytics and enhanced advertising services.“This is a natural addition to our Verspective Operator Analytics solution, which offers subscriber intelligence tools that emphasize data security and integrity as a foundation for actionable intelligence. We see the real-time client data as a key piece to help our customers gain a holistic picture of how their services are performing and how subscribers are interacting with those services. We are excited to advance our Verspective solution and reinforce our relationship with Genius Digital,” said Tom Munro, CEO of Verimatrix.“We are convinced that data security will be key to enabling the data-driven pay TV operator and we are delighted that our data collection technology will continue to be integrated as part of the Verspective Operator Analytics suite. We are looking forward to continuing our partnership with Verimatrix to provide actions from data to TV service providers worldwide,” said Tom Weiss, CEO of Genius Digital.