Nintendo Switch nears 5m sales in JapanOnly 2m behind lifetime sales of PlayStation 4James BatchelorEditor-in-ChiefTuesday 4th September 2018Share this article Recommend Tweet ShareCompanies in this articleNintendoBy the end of this week, Nintendo Switch is expected to have reach five million sales in its home market since it launched last year.Nintendo Life reports that the latest sales figure for the Japanese games market, as published by Famitsu, show the console-handheld hybrid has now shifted 4.966 million units to date and with its current pace of sales, that five million milestone should only take a few days to achieve.It brings Switch’s lifetime sales closer to that of PlayStation 4, which currently stands at 6.979 million units – just two million units ahead. It’s a fine achievement for the Nintendo device given that Sony’s console has been on the market three years longer, although it has a long way to go if it wants to beat PS4’s global sales of more than 82.2 million units.The updated lifetime sales followed Famistu’s report for August, which was the sixth month in a row that Nintendo Switch has been Japan’s biggest-selling console. The device sold 199,000 over the course of the month, compared to PlayStation 4’s 86,000.Related JobsSenior Game Designer – UE4 – AAA United Kingdom Amiqus GamesProgrammer – REMOTE – work with industry veterans! North West Amiqus GamesJunior Video Editor – GLOBAL publisher United Kingdom Amiqus GamesDiscover more jobs in games Nintendo also dominated the software charts, with Splatoon 2 as the biggest-selling game of August at 96,639 units. WarioWare Gold came in second with 90,121 units, followed by Mario Kart 8 Deluxe with 86,897.Even the rest of the top five had links to Nintendo; fourth best-selling game Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum ‘n’ Fun! is a Switch exclusive from Bandai Namco, while Atlus’ Etrian Odyssey X is only available on 3DS. The two games sold 77,761 and 75,834 respectively.Nintendo was also the biggest selling publisher for the month, followed by Bandai Namco and Square Enix.Celebrating employer excellence in the video games industry8th July 2021Submit your company Sign up for The Publishing & Retail newsletter and get the best of GamesIndustry.biz in your inbox. Enter your email addressMore storiesNintendo appointing Despicable Me studio head to board of directorsAnimation studio behind Mario movie gains influence as Illumination Entertainment CEO Chris Meledandri expected to join board next monthBy Brendan Sinclair 5 days agoNintendo reports record full-year profits as Switch nears 85m units soldAnd, despite forecasting decline, the platform holder expects console to beat Wii’s 101 million lifetime sales this yearBy James Batchelor 6 days agoLatest comments Sign in to contributeEmail addressPasswordSign in Need an account? Register now.
Prominent Russian opposition leader Aleksei Navalny (44) suddenly became critically ill on August 20, onboard a passenger jet destined for Moscow soon after takeoff from the western Siberian city of Tomsk. The pilot made an emergency landing in the nearby city of Omsk. An ambulance was waiting on the tarmac and took Navalny to a local hospital. Russian medical authorities announced the anti-corruption blogger and one-time mayoral candidate had not been poisoned but was suffering from some natural disorder, possibly a fluctuation in his sugar levels. Purportedly, no toxins were found in samples of Navalny’s body fluids, either by the local Omsk laboratory or a lab in Moscow. But two medics who had contact with Navalny in Omsk, who requested to remain anonymous, told liberal news site Meduza that Navalny displayed several typical symptoms of nerve agent poisoning and was treated with atropine—a classic nerve agent antidote—with the first shot of the therapy administered in the ambulance at the Omsk airport, which may have saved his life. Later, at the Omsk hospital, Navalny lapsed into a coma. The atropine treatment was discontinued after the official diagnosis refuted a poisoning. Navalny, nonetheless, survived, hooked up to a ventilator (Meduza, September 9).Navalny’s family—his wife Yulia and brother Oleg—flew to Omsk and insisted Aleksei be transferred for treatment abroad. Germany agreed to take the ailing Russian oppositionist. Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov indicated Moscow’s consent and, by August 21, a specially chartered medical jet arrived in Omsk with a German team of doctors aboard. The medical transfer was financed by Boris Zimin and the Zimin Foundation—a charity established by his father, Dmitry, a retired businessman who supports the Russian opposition and lives in self-imposed exile (Kommersant, August 22). The administration of the Omsk hospital initially refused to allow the transfer of Navalny to Germany but eventually agreed, apparently after a phone call from Moscow, according to Oleg Navalny (Newsru.com, August 24).By August 22, Navalny was safely lying at the Charite hospital, in Berlin. Immediately upon admission, he started being treated as a nerve agent attack victim. Charite doctors insist they found evidence of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) enzyme inhibitor poisoning, thus undermining the narrative maintained by Russian officials. Moscow continues to deny any foul play and has adamantly refused to open a criminal investigation, citing the absence of probable cause. Organophosphate nerve agents, like sarin, VX and the notorious Soviet-developed Novichok, deactivate the AChE enzyme that breaks down acetylcholine and some other choline esters, which function as neurotransmitters in the body. The victim is, in effect, poisoned by an excess of his or her own acetylcholine, resulting in muscle paralysis and the inability to breathe. Novichok was infamously used to poison former Russian military intelligence colonel Sergei Skripal together with his daughter Yulia in Salisbury, England, in 2018. When used as weapons of mass destruction, nerve agents are extremely lethal; but if a victim receives qualified medical attention and treatment, as Navalny or the Skripals did, body cells can eventually synthesize enough of the AChE enzyme for neurotransmission to begin working well enough for the victim to recommence breathing and start to recover (Interfax, August 25). Reportedly, Navalny is now out of a coma and has regained consciousness (RIA Novosti, September 10).Russian medical experts are adamant it would be “scientifically impossible” to find cholinesterase inhibitors in Navalny “five days after the alleged poisoning,” insisting the German doctors and specialists are ether mistaken or are falsifying their findings (Lenta.ru, August 24). It is possible this expert opinion was the basis of the Kremlin’s decision to allow the transfer of Navalny to Berlin: in other words, the Russian side falsely assumed it would be impossible to find any solid evidence of foul play. Medical authorities announced that “some 60 Navalny samples” were analyzed and “no toxins were found” (Interfax, September 8). If those claims were accurate, it may be that Russian technological and scientific backwardness was to blame. On September 2, it was officially announced in Berlin that irrefutable evidence had been discovered: traces of a Novichok-type nerve agent on Navalny’s skin and on a plastic water battle he used before becoming critically ill (Interfax, September 2).Berlin and other Western capitals have demanded that Moscow perform a vigorous investigation and provide an explanation of what happened with Navalny. The use of a nerve agent on Russian territory is a gross violation of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) and constitutes an international crime. But Moscow went into Soviet-style rejection mode, refuting the Germen findings as part of an anti-Russian conspiracy and continuing to adamantly deny the Navalny poisoning ever happened (Interfax, September 4). Moscow has demanded Berlin disclose and hand over all evidence and samples that were used to discover the presence of Novichok for Russian experts to asses, threatening a downturn in relations if refused. Yulia Navalny categorically refused to allow the handover of any medical evidence to Moscow, and the German government announced it will instead send evidence to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), which oversees the implementation of the CWC. The chair of the Russian Federation Council Foreign Relations Committee, Konstantin Kosachev, announced the Novichok could have been produced in the United States and then shipped to Germany, where the Germans used it to contaminate the samples they then handed over to OPCW experts. According to Kosachev, if Berlin insists the Navalny samples contain Novichok, the Germans must first prove the nerve agent indeed came from Russia (Interfax, September 10).Novichok-type nerve agents may be in the form of a gas, a liquid or even a powder. The compound is chemically stable, deadly in tiny doses and can effectively penetrate the skin (unlike, say, polonium-210), which permits great operational flexibility when preparing a clandestine attack. Apparently, the Russian authorities believed taking out the potential leader of the Russian opposition was worth the risk of possible exposure. Maybe scenes of the Belarusian civil rebellion against the long-serving authoritarian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka had unnerved the Kremlin. The Navalny case has already engulfed and tarnished all branches of power in Russia, probably ensuring they all stay loyal to President Vladimir Putin in times of possible crises. If the Kremlin is seriously planning to make any kind of assertive move against Belarus, the potential fallout with the West will be so immense that the Navalny case will quickly fade from memory.
Leave a Reply Cancel replyYour email address will not be published.Comment Name Email Website Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. ShareTweetShareShareEmailCommentsThe French Chambery Savoie got an important signing before the official start of the season 2017/2018. According Balkan-Handball.com sources, one of the most successful French teams in the last decade signed contract with Croatian left back – playmaker, Sandro Obranovic. The 25-years old shooter was at the beginning of his last year under contract with RK PPD Zagreb, but it was clear that he is out of concept of the club, as he just came back from loan in Hungarian vice-champions PICK Szeged.Obranovic played significant role in Zagreb’s team during time of Veselin Vujovic on the bench, when he attracted attention of some of the biggest European teams.He also had some appearances for the Croatian national team. Related Items: Click to comment ShareTweetShareShareEmail
It is particularly appropriate that the message should come from Brussels, a capital city where much of the urban road network still lacks sensible priority signs and road markings.More seriously, it is the car industries of Europe, America and Japan which set the technological pace and the accompanying standards and specifications. Yet it is in the developing and emerging countries of the world where over 80% of the road accidents occur. Such countries need safety technologies which are simple, reliable, low-cost and, perhaps above all, easy to repair and maintain. DG Energy and Transport is rightfully concerned about improving road safety within the EU; let us hope that DG Development is keeping an eye on the global transport environment which their colleagues are helping to create.J. Stuart YerrellBudleigh Salterton, Devon, UK
Move over Robert Downey Jr. — Twitter’s got a new king of the hill.President Barack Obama shattered Downey Jr.’s world record for fastest time to 1 million followers after launching his account Monday afternoon.The Guinness Book of World Records confirmed the record on its blog. When Downey Jr. launched his account on April 11, 2014 he accumulated 1 million followers in 23 hours and 22 minutes, up until that point the fastest in history. On Monday, Obama was able to reach 1 million followers in less than 5 hours.Obama already had an account operated by aides with 59.3 million followers, but he announced that @POTUS would serve as his “own account.” That account is the third most-followed account on Twitter, after Katy Perry’s and Justin Bieber’s.Obama’s first Tweet from the new account has already been retweeted more than 250,000 times and favorited more than 340,000 times. It read “Hello, Twitter! It’s Barack. Really! Six years in, they’re finally giving me my own account.”Downey Jr.’s follower total has since plateaued — he currently has 4.54 million followers.Just over 24 hours after his first tweet, Obama already has 1.89 million followers.
This year, Saint Mary’s is offering a class on civil discourse in hopes of promoting dialogue on campus.The one-credit course, which will begin after fall break, will focus on different controversial issues and promote civil discourse between students from across the political spectrum, philosophy professor Megan Zwart — who started the course — said.“You have this cross-selection of viewpoints, and we’ll find ways to discuss those ideas,” Zwart said. “The intention is not to become expert on these areas. It’s to acknowledge that global citizens and participants in a democracy have to be able to identify good views to hold, evaluate their own views [and] engage with views they disagree with, so we’re trying to build the skills to do that. It’s not about convincing people of certain particular positions or of using arguments to bludgeon other people who have different views, but trying to listen to other people’s views, see how their experience gives rise to those views.”Zwart said the class will be predominately discussion-based. She said the first few classes will hone in on one issue — such as free speech or abortion — and the final class will be a public event for the Saint Mary’s community, held Dec. 5 and led entirely by the students in the class.Zwart came up with this course when her students approached her about wanting a place to discuss heavy issues in a classroom setting, she said. She then applied for and received a Campus Compact Fund for Positive Engagement Grant, which was given to 40 campuses across the nation to promote positive engagement.“During the election season, when I felt like the conversation around these issues was so disordered, I would see people posting on social media … and I would love to talk to that person,” Zwart said. “I’m immensely curious about what makes people tick and why they hold the views they do. It wasn’t that I felt angry or that I felt so strongly that frustration was the response, it was really more a curiosity.”In order for the class to run, Zwart made sure to screen students who were interested to make sure a wide array of viewpoints would be represented. She said the class would not have run if only people who identify as liberal or as conservative would have signed up.“I hope they get to engage with a lot of other experiences and viewpoints that aren’t their own in a spirit of curiosity rather than defensiveness,” Zwart said. “When we’re confronted with something different than what we’re used to or what we think, our immediate response, naturally, is a sort of defensiveness. … I’m hoping that this class can give people an opportunity to approach different views with a curiosity.”Zwart said she also hopes students will evaluate and understand their own standpoints. She said she wants students to reflect on their views and their personal values and make sure they line up, which would help students better understand their views, thus aiding them when they discuss with people who hold different views.“I think that people are way more able to hear other people’s views when they see those views as flowing from authentic core values,” she said. “You may not understand those values, but if you understand the person’s view as an outgrowth of that, then you are less likely to have a breakdown in communication — you’re more likely to understand that as an authentic belief, even if you disagree with it.”Tags: civil discourse, communication, new class, Politics
Vermont Business Magazine Evolving small businesses and start-ups in the Northeast Kingdom may now access new sources of business loan funds. The loans will be made from self-replenishing pools of money from the Town of Jay, where new loans are capitalized by the interest and principal payments from existing loans. Backing will be directed to small entrepreneurs who otherwise may not qualify for traditional financing due to lack of credit or collateral.The Town of Jay has assigned the loan funds to Community Capital of Vermont (CCVT) and the Northeastern Vermont Development Association (NVDA), in consultation with the Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development. The funds will be distributed by CCVT and NVDA, and a partnership with Top of Vermont, the Jay Peak Region’s chamber of commerce, will help with marketing the funds.Financers CCVT and NVDA have a longstanding track record in lending to underserved entrepreneurs and communities. Through a proven financing system of consultation and technical support, CCVT makes loans from $1,000 – $100,000 to entrepreneurs statewide.“Using loan funds effectively is key to long-term business success,” noted Carol Lighthall, CCVT Executive Director. “Throughout the process, CCVT provides optional training and counseling, free of charge, to raise the post-loan visibility of our borrowers’ businesses and improve their quality, efficiency, and delivery of services.”NVDA is a designated Nonprofit Community Development Organization serving the Northeast Kingdom region of Vermont. It administers a Revolving Loan Fund for economic and community development projects in Caledonia, Essex and Orleans Counties. Executive Director Dave Snedeker noted, “With new loan funds recently coming to NVDA from the Town of Jay, we now hope to begin making loans to businesses in Jay as well as strengthen our support in surrounding Northeast Kingdom communities. “ NVDA tends to make larger business loans in the range of $10,000 – $100,000 in partnership with other lenders.Loan funds are immediately available. Carol Lighthall and Dave Snedeker, as well as business ambassadors from the region who have worked with CCVT and NVDA, will be on hand to talk with new entrepreneurs in an informational session at the Top of Vermont Annual Meeting on May 22. For more information about the Top of Vermont event, contact Karen O’Donnell (802.988.4120, [email protected](link sends e-mail)). For more information about business funding, contact Carol Lighthall at CCVT (802.479.0167 ext.2, [email protected](link sends e-mail)) or Dave Snedeker at NVDA (802.748-8303 [email protected](link sends e-mail)).Source: Community Capital of Vermont 4.13.2017
NPR:Researchers asked this question: Is a company better off spending big money for a Super Bowl ad or buying several spots for that same amount of money at a less expensive time of the year?Well, there are a couple of different reasons. One, Geisenberg thinks that being in sort of the hyper-excited state that people are as they’re watching these big sporting events might not actually make you very conducive to processing the content of the ads. But there’s also something else. Sascha Topolinski in Germany recently conducted a study. He wasn’t studying the Super Bowl, but his research is spot on when it comes to describing how most Americans watch the Super Bowl. He finds that eating while you watch advertisements reduces the effects that advertising messages have on you.Read the whole story: NPR More of our Members in the Media >
New York Magazine:There are those people — you know who you are — who always know just what to say, and how to behave, and what to wear, no matter where they are or whom they’re with. You could invite them to a black-tie wedding or trivia night at a dive bar, and either way, they’ll figure out how to fit right in.And then there are those — you know who you are, too — who are always, utterly themselves, no matter the context. After all, they reason, why would anyone want to go around faking their personality?Mark Snyder, a psychology researcher at the University of Minnesota, has been dividing the world in two this way for as long as he can remember. Eventually, this instinct led to the Self-Monitoring Scale, which has been used for more than four decades to research these two ways of being. “Self-monitoring gets at a fundamental difference between people, on whether your view of how to handle social situations is to fit yourself to the context and to play a role versus, whether you view it as finding a way to do what you want, express who you are, show other people your true inner self,” Snyder told Science of Us.Read the whole story: New York Magazine More of our Members in the Media >
Study identifies H7N9 mutations that could ease spread among humansResearchers looking for mutations that might make H7N9 avian influenza more easily transmissible among people identified three amino acid changes that would make the virus more likely to bind to human airway receptors. A team of researchers from the United States, including those from The Scripps Research Institute, and the Netherlands reported its findings today in PLoS Pathogens.The scientists focused on mutations that could occur in the H7 hemagglutinin (HA) protein, which allows the virus to latch onto host cells. They didn’t test the mutations in H7N9 viruses, because of gain-of-function rules and concerns. Rather, they used molecular modeling and knowledge of the HA structure to flag mutations that have the capacity to make the virus more specific to human, rather than avian, airway receptors. Then they produced an HA with different combinations of the mutations in an experimental cell line (not H7N9) and tested how strongly they bound to human and avian receptors.The team found that mutations in three amino acids bound more strongly to human receptors, signaling a specificity switch from bird to human types. In another experiment, they found that the H7 mutants also attached to cells from human tracheal tissue.The researchers concluded that understanding the mutations that might allow the virus to spread more easily in humans is a useful tool for surveillance in poultry and humans, as their identification may serve as an early warning.Jun 15 PLoS Pathog study Spanish study finds no reduced flu vaccine effect in consecutive seasonsAs opposed to results of recent studies from Canada, findings of a study from Spain published yesterday indicated that getting immunized against influenza does not lower the protective effect of flu vaccine in the subsequent season.Writing in PLoS One, investigators noted that their test-negative case-control study included data on patients 9 years old and older from the 2010-11 flu season through the 2015-16 season. It included 1,206 cases of 2009 H1N1 flu, 1,358 H3N2 cases, and 1,079 influenza B cases.They found a flu vaccine effectiveness (VE) across the seasons of 53% for H1N1 for persons vaccinated in the current season only, compared with a 50% VE for those vaccinated in both the current and previous seasons. For H3N2, VE rates were 17% and 3%, respectively, and for flu B 57% and 56%, respectively.The authors conclude, “Our results suggested no interference between the previous and current influenza vaccines against A(H1N1)pdm09 and B viruses, but a possible negative interference against A(H3N2) virus.”Jun 14 PLoS One study Feb 10 CIDRAP News story “Studies shed light on effects of serial flu shots, current vaccine’s benefits” Apr 5, 2016, CIDRAP News story “Prior-year vaccination cut flu vaccine effects in 2014-15” DRC, Belgium, Nigeria report more avian flu outbreaksThe Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) yesterday reported 11 more highly pathogenic H5N8 avian flu outbreaks, all in village ducks and chickens in Ituri province, according to a report to the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE).The location of the latest outbreaks is the same area in the DRC’s northeastern corner where H5N8 was initially reported in late May, which signaled the DRC’s first outbreaks involving the subtype. Over the past few months H5N8 has turned up in a handful of African nations.The new events had start dates ranging from May 17 to Jun 3. The virus killed 6,927 of 17,272 susceptible birds, and the survivors were slated for culling.In other H5N8 developments, Belgium reported three more outbreaks in wild birds, officials said today in an OIE notification. The events began from Jun 13 to Jun 15, affecting locations in Luxembourg, Hainaut, and West Flanders provinces. The virus killed 45 of 101 susceptible birds, and the rest were destroyed as part of the response measures.The outbreaks follow a Jun 2 report of an outbreak involving a family of birds that includes pheasants and quail.Elsewhere, Nigeria reported one new H5N1 outbreak in backyard poultry, according to a report today from the OIE. The event began on May 15 in Adamawa state in the east, killing 50 of 200 layers. Jun 14 OIE report on H5N8 in the DRC Jun 15 OIE report on H5N8 in Belgium Jun 15 OIE report on H5N1 in Nigeria