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Global Switching Converters Market Manufacturers, Technology, Segmentation and Development Trends Forecasts to 2025 – Fusion Science Academy

Posted: January 18, 2020 at 12:50 am

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TIInfineon TechnologiesVICORTDK CorporationTorexSTMicroelectronicsFairchild SemiconductorNXPON SemiconductorSII Semiconductor CorporationRohm SemiconductorMicrochipEricsson Power ModulesAnalog Devices, Inc.CinconBel Power SolutionsDelta ElectronicsDiodes IncorporatedSemtechLinear Technology

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Termite Bait System Products Market: Quantitative Analysis from 2019 to 2025 to Enable the Stakeholders to Capitalize on the Prevailing Termite Bait…

Posted: at 12:49 am

The Global Buckwheat Pillow Market Research Report 2020 thoroughly depicts insightful evaluation of current and historic trends in the global Buckwheat Pillow industry. It examines the changing structure of the market alongside ongoing technological advancements, innovations, and significant developments that have been escalating the growth rate for the last decade. Crucial factors such as Buckwheat Pillow market size, share, demand, production, sales, and revenue are also analyzed and forecasted in the report to help clients to comprehend the current and future market performance.

The global Buckwheat Pillow Market Overview:

The market has been aggressively performing across the world with an evenly thriving CAGR over the last few years. According to the studied market statistics, it is likely to strongly clutch a remunerative status during the forecast years with the rapid surge in sales revenue. A number of vital factors including rising Buckwheat Pillow demand, product awareness, industrialization in the developed regions, increasing disposable incomes, population hike, market stability, and adequate financial sources are adding substantial progress to the industry.

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More importantly, the report highlights companies financial operations and performance with a precise evaluation of their gross margin, revenue, Buckwheat Pillow sales volume, pricing structure, production cost, financial ratios, product value, and overall profitability. The report also examines their business strategies such as mergers, ventures, amalgamations, acquisitions, as well as product launches, and brand promotions that aid market players in expanding their global presence and setting new challenges in the industry.

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Termite Bait System Products Market: Quantitative Analysis from 2019 to 2025 to Enable the Stakeholders to Capitalize on the Prevailing Termite Bait...

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National Review Shouldn’t Join The Left In Blaming Jews For Antisemitism – The Federalist

Posted: at 12:49 am

Sometimes even a publication youve long admired gets things horribly wrong. In this case, its National Review, which just published an incredibly problematic article, Anti-Semitic Attacks Shine Spotlight on Long-Simmering Tri-State Tensions, written by Zachary Evans, attempts to explain rising antisemitism in the New York area.

Its a question demanding answers, especially in light of Decembers antisemitic attacks in Jersey City, which left three dead at a kosher grocery, and in Monsey, which left four injured and one man facing permanent brain damage and partial paralysis. Instead of contributing to a greater understanding of the issues at hand, however, the article dives deep into the communal tensions narrative that both David Harsanyi(writing forNational Review)and Ihave criticized for its fundamental victim-blaming.

The notion that tensions have existed for decades in the Jewish enclaves that surround New York City is a non-sequitur if were trying to understand what happened in Jersey City and Monsey. No news report has described Jersey City attackers Francine Graham and David Anderson as neighborhood residents. The idea that they experienced long-simmering tensions with the yeshiva children theyd initially planned to attack, or with the couple at the kosher grocery store they actually attacked, makes zero sense. This narrative also glosses over the insane idea that murder would be a rational way to handle neighborly disputes.

Grafton Thomas, who attacked the Hanukkah gathering in Monsey with an 18-inch machete, was likewise not a neighbor. The National Review article describes Thomas as a Crown Heights native, neglecting to mention hes more recently residedin Greenwood Lake, New York, which is about 20 miles away from Monsey. In other words, Thomas like Graham and Anderson had to go out of his way to attack Jews, who were minding their own business.

As for the outmigration from New York City referenced in National Reviews article, Monsey is not a new center of observant Jewish life. That Jewish community has been there for decades, but even if it hadnt been, that shouldnt matter. Americans should be able to move without strangers second-guessing their housing decisions.

Then, of course, theres the anonymous allegation in the article that Hasidim are like locusts, who go from community to community just stripping all the resources out of it. The anonymous interviewee, described as a Jewish, but not ultra-Orthodox, resident of upstate New York, sounds shockingly unfamiliar with the history of insect analogies used to dehumanize Jews. Those include Georgia Rep. Hank Johnson comparing some Jewish Israelis to termites in 2016, and U.S. Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan tweeting, Im not an anti-Semite. Im anti-Termite in 2018.

In afollow-up article, Evans notes that including this grotesque comparison obviously does not constitute an endorsement of its language or its argument, but for that to be obvious, there must be a sharp rhetorical divide between this interviewee and the rest of the article. There is not.

Consider the uncritical comment about the perception that many of the men either dont work or make low salaries, choosing instead to devote their time to studying religious texts. The Orthodox Jewish Public Affairs Council (OJPAC) foundthat 69.9% of males age 20-64 in Kiryas Joel [another heavily Hasidic area north of New York City] were employed during the 2013-2017 Census survey years. This tracks closely with the 75.8% males across New York in the same age group that were employed.

While this data is not specific to Monseys Hasidim, it illustrates why the perception that Hasidic men dont work is false. And as OJPAC hasalso noted, this narrative of Hasidim as a financial burden is swiftly contradicted by the many articles blasting Hasidic Jews as wealthy gentrifiers in Brooklyn and Jersey City.

All these criticisms of New Yorks Hasidim, and Jews more broadly, underscore that antisemitism is fundamentally illogical. Depending on the speaker, Jews are told to go back to New York or Israel or Poland where most Jews never lived. Jews are regularly criticized as both communists and capitalists. Jews are called both white supremacists and the authors of white genocide. The only through line is projection, revealing more about the bigots hurling these insults than about Jews.

If the goal of publishing Evanss article was to better inform or even fight antisemitism, it was not helpful. When vulnerable minority groups are physically attacked, mainstream as in non-extremist publications typically excoriate the attackers. However, too many articles about antisemitism, including this one from National Review, explain away recent attacks with context the writers would never offer in discussing any other racial, religious, or ethnic minority group.

Editors of all publications would be wise to adopt a litmus test: If you wouldnt assign or accept an article pursuing a particular angle about any other vulnerable group, dont do it for American Jews, who are facing a troubling uptick in antisemitism. Abolish the double standard.

Normal people dont nod along when wife-beaters or rapists insist their victims deserved it. Nor should anyone of goodwill ever provide cover for antisemites, who similarly blame Jews for their own antisemitic misdeeds. Regardless of any justifications offered, the truth remains: Jews are not to blame for antisemitism; antisemites are.

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Thailand termite spray commercial – Boing Boing

Posted: January 16, 2020 at 8:46 pm

Thailand termite spray commercial / Boing Boing

This 2 minute commercial for termite spray is amusing, not least in how it explains why you shouldn't panic if the bugs don't immediately die. I feel more satisfied having watched it than most recent movies.

Spotify is now making regularly updated playlists and a podcast (I know, I know) for dogs whose owners must leave their beloved pets at home for extended hours, while theyre at work and so on. The idea is dogs can listen to the audio in their owners absence and be comforted. Some 74% of UK []

Twitter user @sydneywhitson reported that her coworker called in (yet again) and said she had a nail on her tire that caused her to have a flat and reportedly sent in the above photo as evidence. Zoomed version below. Of course, Twitter delighted in the stupidity. Heres an actual picture you can use next time []

Im all for anything that makes shopping more entertaining.

If youve got an Apple Watch, youre all about convenience. These trusty devices can deliver your messages, email and other smartphone perks anywhere you go. Which is why its a bit of a downer when you have to bring it back home to charge it up. Sure, the standard Apple charger is wireless, but its []

Is that sleek new iPhone a little too sleek? There is not, as it turns out, an app for that. But if you need a classic arcade fix, there is a case for it. The GAMECASE is a retro gamers dream: A functional iPhone case that also turns your screen into a battleground for the []

If youre working with databases, youre working with SQL. Even in the changing world of the web, there are some classics that endure, and SQL (along with its database management system MySQL) is one of them. Millions of websites and databases have been built using SQL code as their foundation, and theyre still being built []

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Why is this Women’s March different from all the others? – Washington Jewish Week

Posted: at 8:46 pm

By Steph Black

For the fourth year in a row, I am proudly participating in the Womens March on Washington. You should join me.

As a Jewish woman, I am obligated show up in support of social justice wherever needed, following in the long tradition of Jewish women who stand up for what is right.

The first womens march was launched in 2017, the day after President Donald Trumps inauguration, to show him and his administration that women would not stand idly by while he rolled back our hard-won freedoms, like the right to have an abortion, equal pay, freedom from domestic violence and more.

But it turns out the biggest struggle was not to convince Americans that such a demonstration was needed. The biggest struggle was an internal one. Marchers like me progressive Jews and Zionists have struggled ever since the first Womens March to eradicate blatant anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism from the leadership. The success of that internal struggle is why Im inviting everyone who is able to join me.

Jewish women have been fighting for a fair and just Womens March from the beginning. We have listened to an original founder of the march, Vanessa Wrubles testimony of vile anti-Semitism from the early leadership. We denounced former leader Tamika Mallorys continued allegiance to Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, who compared Jews to termites. And Jewish women did not sit idly by while former march leader Linda Sarsour made egregious statements about Jews and Israel. We stood up, we fought back. And we made progress.

This year, the Womens March announced an entirely new leadership after three of the four original members, Mallory, Sarsour and Bob Bland, stepped down. Of the 16 members of the new board, three are Jews. And when the anti-Semitic and anti-Zionist remarks of board member Zahra Billoo came to light, she was dismissed within three days. And last years march was entirely led by Jewish women of color, who danced in front of the march with a Torah. We should be rewarding good leadership when we see it and showing up in support.

This years march is the culmination of a long and hard battle for solidarity. And I could not be prouder to say that I support the Unity Principles of the Womens March:

We believe that Womens Rights are Human Rights and Human Rights are Womens Rights. We must create a society in which women including Black women, Indigenous women, poor women, immigrant women, disabled women, Jewish women, Muslim women, Latinx women, Asian and Pacific Islander women, lesbian, bi, queer, and trans women are free and able to care for and nurture their families, however they are formed, in safe and healthy environments free from structural impediments.

I see myself in these goals. And I have marched every single year for the same reasons. I have long cared about these issues and I refuse to be sidelined from participating because of wrongdoings and misdeeds of the past. I refuse to allow myself to be pushed out of a movement I believe in because anti-Semites and bigoted people dont want me there. Nor have I compromised my Judaism or Zionism to make those in this movement more comfortable. I will not let bitter grudges keep me from participating when I have finally seen the result I am looking for: an inclusive and bigotry-free march.

Jewish women of Washington have the chance to claim our spots on the right side of the womens rights movement for this years march and celebrate the work we have done to get here. Join me and my fellow Jewish women and allies on Jan. 18 at Freedom Plaza to celebrate our wins and fight for the future of the womens movement.

Jewish women have been on the forefront of the fight for social justice and social good. From Clara Lemlich sparking the largest labor strike at the time, to Heather Booth founding the Jane Network to surreptitiously provide women with abortion care, to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg repeatedly defending womens rights in the Supreme Court, women have been on the forefront of progressive movements. It is now our turn to do the same. March with me for an end to anti-Semitism. For the right to access abortion care. For the Equal Rights Amendment. For an end to racism, Islamophobia and xenophobia. For LGBTQIA protections. And march with me for womens rights.

Steph Black is a feminist, activist and writer based in Washington. Read her work at stephblack.blog.

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Bill Kirby Jr.: Once the bulldozers and excavators roar on South Main in Hope Mills … – The Fayetteville Observer

Posted: at 8:46 pm

HOPE MILLS Bill Speight sends along an email to say he was disappointed with my take on the Hope Mills town board and its recent vote to demolish the historic Christ Episcopal Church parish house that was donated to the town in 2010 by the Episcopal diocese.

I would have expected you to include the Paul Harvey 'rest of the story,' Speight writes about the parish house that Mayor Pro Tem Kenjuana McCray and board members Pat Edwards and Bryan Marley voted on Jan. 6 to demolish because of critical structural issues that could be too costly for the town to correct.

Commissioners Jessie Bellflowers and Jerry Legge voted in opposition.

And Bellflowers certainly was among an estimated 15 protesters on Jan. 9 outside the parish house voicing their concerns about demolition of the structure, circa 1910.

The same structure, for your consideration, that the town manager told the board on April 15, 2019, as per a report from Jeff Adolphsen with the state Historic Preservation Office, that has a suspect roof, was in need of underpinning and a suspicion of termites.

Also for your consideration was the voice of Chuck Hodges, the town's fire chief, who had his own issues with the structural integrity of the building.

"We'll put the fire out," Hodges said about his firefighters, if ever the call comes, "but we won't go into the building until it's structurally sound.

But

"Both of these buildings were donated to the town with the understanding that they would be saved and preserved and restored in the spirit of the founding of Hope Mills in 1891 as a mill village," Bellflowers would say during the protest. "That's why they were donated. I'm sure that the folks that owned this probably would not have donated it if they knew that it was going to be torn down. There are other options, and the board didn't explore them."

Bellflowers says the board has failed the Hope Mills community with its decision to raze the parish house, and he wonders why the rush to destroy it.

That Bellflowers is the smartest elected official in Hope Mills is debatable, Speight says about my description that the commissioner is smart in buying all the time he can to explore ways of saving the historic building before the wrecking ball moves in along South Main Street. That he, Legge, (Mike) Mitchell and (Meg) Larson, plus Lisa Waring, are now champions of this charade is understandable.

Mitchell is the former mayor pro-tem who lost his bid against Mayor Jackie Warner in November. Larson is a former commissioner who says she couldn't tolerate Warner and Edwards any longer and chose not to seek re-election.

They are anti-Jackie Warner, Speight says. Can we say sour grapes?

Speight has thoughts on those protesters, too, including Alyssa Bellflowers, who organized the protest; former Hope Mills Commissioner Elyse Craver; Joanne Scarola; and Carla Welsh, secretary of the Hope Mills Historical Society.

The massive demonstration of about 15 people at the location was ludicrous, he says of the Jan. 9 protest. Allegedly, about eight were from Bellflowers family, plus others from the cabal not on the board. Why, after all this time, is the issue at the forefront of some few citizens mission?

It wouldn't have mattered, Mr. Speight, if just one Hope Mills resident turned out with a Save the parish placard. All who call Hope Mills home, no matter if they are for or against demolition of the building that is one of the oldest in Hope Mills and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, are free to feel passionate about whatever that belief, and certainly if they protest without causing harm to property or others.

The parish house project was one thatFayetteville Technical Community College students could have worked onduring different periods this year, Bellflowers was telling me this week. This project is great for our community, but others on the town board do not support saving the building. Sad.

Perhaps, if you consider the condition of the building and the potential $300,000-plus cost of restoration, Mayor Pro Tem Kenjuana McCray, Pat Edwards and Bryan Marley voted for what is best for town coffers. Hard to argue that. But you cannot fault Jessie Bellflowers or Jerry Legge for trying to salvage the parish house for historical posterity, although Legge just a year ago was saying it was a money pit that doesn't have a bottom to it.

Apparently, by his Jan. 6 vote, Legge had a change of heart. Meanwhile, Bellflowers never has wavered in his hope and effort to save the structure. At least they tried, because once the bulldozers and the excavators roar along South Main, the parish hall will fall, it will be the end and you cannot turn back time.

Touche, Mr. Speight, and your take from my perch over here on Whitfield Street always is welcome.

Columnist Bill Kirby Jr. can be reached at bkirby@fayobserver.com or 910-486-3571.

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A Cockroach vs. Water Bug: Here’s How to Tell the Difference & Get Rid of Them for Good – Prevention.com

Posted: at 8:46 pm

For most of us, the ability to identify insects is probably best defined as limited. Its why we lump any eight-legged creepy crawly into the house spider category, and why we call any shiny, torpedo-shaped critter a palmetto bug.

Its also why, whenever we find an insect under our kitchen sink or in our damp basement, we tend to categorize it as a water bug without thinking much more about it. But the truth is, if youre finding a water bug in your basement, theres a pretty good chance its actually a cockroach. And the two types of insects, although super similar in appearance, are actually pretty different in biology.

In fact, the cockroaches and water bugsboth of which belong to the class Insecta, if were thinking back to high school science classactually belong to two totally different orders. Cockroaches belong to the order Blattodea (which also contains termites) and water bugs belong to the order called Hemiptera (think: insects like cicadas).

Despite their differences in classification, its easy to see why people will often confuse cockroaches for water bugs and vice versa. There are people all over the country that call cockroaches water bugs or think of them as water bugs, says Scott ONeal, Ph.D. an urban entomology researcher at the University of Nebraska.

This is especially true when it comes to the oriental cockroach, which is the type of roach most commonly identified as being a water bug. Thats because oriental cockroaches will typically hang out where theres water nearby, like basements, says Dini Miller, Ph.D., professor of urban entomology at Virginia Tech and Urban Pest Management Specialist for the state of Virginia.

So how, exactly, can you tell cockroaches and water bugs apart? Heres what to know.

Water bugs are typically brown or grayish in color, says ONeal. Cockroaches are usually reddish or brownish, although the oriental cockroaches are a lot darkerwhich is where the confusion with the water bug comes into play.

Another way water bugs differ from cockroaches is size. Water bugs typically ring in at about 2 inches in length, says ONeal. (Cockroaches can be bigger and smaller in comparison.) They also dont have the antenna that a cockroach will, which is the first thing you should look out for when trying to identify what, exactly, is crawling around your home.

The main difference between a cockroach and a water bug is the antenna.

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The main difference between a cockroach and a water bug is the antenna. Cockroaches will typically have very long antennas, and you usually cant even see their head because its located below the thorax, which is where the legs and wings of the cockroach are attached, says ONeal.

Its also important to note that most cockroaches and most water bugs have wings and can fly, says ONeal, though certain types of cockroacheslike the oriental cockroach, most commonly mistaken for a water bugcant. In fact, thats one easy way to differentiate an oriental cockroach from a water bug. If it has wings, youre likely looking at a water bug.

Water bugs are just thatfound in the water. Theyre aquatic insects, says ONeal. But one thing that might cause you to spot them near your home, especially if you live near a body of water? They might be attracted to your house at night, might come to your porch light if you live near a body of water they inhabit, says ONeal.

So generally speaking, water bugs arent trying to get inside your home. Theyre just trying to be where the water is, and at night, they might be lured closer to your home if theres moisture near it.

Cockroaches, on the other hand, can thrive in your home, as it provides all the food, shelter, and water they need. Although it will vary depending on the type of roach youre dealing with, youll commonly find them in places like under your sink, behind your fridge, or hidden in crevices. Cockroaches need water and food and shelter, and the places where you find that in a home is the bathroom and the kitchen, says Coby Schal, Ph.D., who heads the Schal Lab at North Carolina State University, which focuses on the study of cockroaches.

Both cockroaches and water bugs are commonly nocturnal, too, so its unlikely youll see them during the day unless you have a serious problem or youve gone looking for them, says ONeal.

If youre seeing a water bug in your home, the chances are high that what youre actually seeing is a roach, specifically of the oriental kind. That said, youre going to want to approach killing the critters by using a bait, which come in 30-millimeter syringe tubes, says Schal. (Check out our full step-by-step guide on how to get rid of cockroaches here.)

And because oriental cockroaches arent resistant to any insecticides (like German cockroaches), getting rid of them with cockroach bait should be pretty straightforward. Simply place the bait where youre finding themlikely in areas of moisture, such as under the sink or in your basementand the bait will do its job in eliminating the roaches.

The short answer: Water bugs can bite, but they typically wont. Like other true bugsinsects that belong to the order Hemipterathey have a piercing/sucking mouthpart, says ONeal. They use it to feed on their prey, and it would hurt if they bit you with it.

But, he adds, its unlikely that a water bug will actually bite you unless youre handling them improperly. They do not seek out people or try to feed on large animals, he says.

Cockroaches, meanwhile, dont and cant actually bite humans or pets. They dont have any reason to, says Miller. Their mouthparts just cannot pierce human skin.

The good news? In the off chance you are dealing with actual water bugs, the same treatment will work.

Like what you just read? Youll love our magazine! Gohere to subscribe. Dont miss a thing by downloading Apple News here and following Prevention. Oh, and were on Instagram too.

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PFG Advisors Sells 1,750 Shares of Rollins, Inc. (NYSE:ROL) – Riverton Roll

Posted: January 15, 2020 at 9:50 am

PFG Advisors decreased its stake in shares of Rollins, Inc. (NYSE:ROL) by 4.7% in the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the SEC. The fund owned 35,236 shares of the business services providers stock after selling 1,750 shares during the quarter. PFG Advisors holdings in Rollins were worth $1,171,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Several other large investors also recently modified their holdings of the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its position in shares of Rollins by 1.4% during the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 19,551,964 shares of the business services providers stock worth $701,329,000 after acquiring an additional 276,470 shares during the last quarter. Price T Rowe Associates Inc. MD lifted its position in Rollins by 16.9% during the second quarter. Price T Rowe Associates Inc. MD now owns 12,660,262 shares of the business services providers stock valued at $454,124,000 after purchasing an additional 1,827,992 shares during the last quarter. Morgan Stanley lifted its position in Rollins by 42.2% during the second quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 10,962,173 shares of the business services providers stock valued at $393,213,000 after purchasing an additional 3,252,015 shares during the last quarter. Invesco Ltd. lifted its position in Rollins by 59.9% during the second quarter. Invesco Ltd. now owns 3,959,282 shares of the business services providers stock valued at $142,019,000 after purchasing an additional 1,482,695 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Congress Asset Management Co. MA lifted its position in Rollins by 0.8% during the third quarter. Congress Asset Management Co. MA now owns 2,135,089 shares of the business services providers stock valued at $72,742,000 after purchasing an additional 16,744 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 42.38% of the companys stock.

Several equities analysts have commented on ROL shares. Jefferies Financial Group started coverage on shares of Rollins in a research report on Wednesday, November 27th. They set a hold rating and a $38.00 price objective for the company. Royal Bank of Canada started coverage on shares of Rollins in a research report on Tuesday, October 8th. They set a sector perform rating and a $34.00 price objective for the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Rollins from a sell rating to a hold rating and set a $41.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Thursday, October 24th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus upgraded shares of Rollins from a sell rating to a hold rating and increased their price objective for the company from $28.50 to $34.00 in a research report on Wednesday, November 6th. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $38.15.

ROL stock opened at $35.05 on Wednesday. Rollins, Inc. has a 52 week low of $31.36 and a 52 week high of $43.91. The company has a quick ratio of 0.75, a current ratio of 0.79 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.39. The company has a fifty day simple moving average of $33.88 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $34.92. The firm has a market capitalization of $11.45 billion, a P/E ratio of 49.37 and a beta of 0.28.

Rollins (NYSE:ROL) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, October 23rd. The business services provider reported $0.22 earnings per share for the quarter, meeting the Thomson Reuters consensus estimate of $0.22. Rollins had a net margin of 10.42% and a return on equity of 31.20%. The business had revenue of $556.50 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $547.92 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $0.31 earnings per share. The businesss revenue for the quarter was up 14.1% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, analysts anticipate that Rollins, Inc. will post 0.73 EPS for the current year.

About Rollins

Rollins, Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides pest and termite control services to residential and commercial customers. It offers protection against termite damage, rodents, and insects to homes and businesses, including hotels, food service establishments, food manufacturers, retailers, and transportation companies.

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PFG Advisors Sells 1,750 Shares of Rollins, Inc. (NYSE:ROL) - Riverton Roll

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The case for … making low-tech ‘dumb’ cities instead of ‘smart’ ones – The Guardian

Posted: at 9:47 am

Ever since smartphones hooked us with their limitless possibilities and dopamine hits, mayors and city bureaucrats cant get enough of the notion of smart-washing their cities. It makes them sound dynamic and attractive to business. Whats not to love about whizzkids streamlining your responsibilities for running services, optimising efficiency and keeping citizens safe into a bunch of fun apps?

Theres no concrete definition of a smart city, but high-tech versions promise to use cameras and sensors to monitor everyone and everything, from bins to bridges, and use the resulting data to help the city run smoothly. One high-profile proposal by Googles sister company, Sidewalk Labs, to give 12 acres of Toronto a smart makeover is facing a massive backlash. In September, an independent report called the plans frustratingly abstract; in turn US tech investor Roger McNamee warned Google cant be trusted with such data, calling the project surveillance capitalism.

For many challenges, we dont need new technologies or new ideas

There are practical considerations, too, as Shoshanna Saxe of the University of Toronto has highlighted. Smart cities, she wrote in the New York Times in July, will be exceedingly complex to manage, with all sorts of unpredictable vulnerabilities. Tech products age fast: what happens when the sensors fail? And can cities afford expensive new teams of tech staff, as well as keeping the ground workers theyll still need? If smart data identifies a road that needs paving, she writes, it still needs people to show up with asphalt and a steamroller.

Saxe pithily calls for redirecting some of our energy toward building excellent dumb cities. Shes not anti-technology, its just that she thinks smart cities may be unnecessary. For many of our challenges, we dont need new technologies or new ideas; we need the will, foresight and courage to use the best of the old ideas, she says.

Saxe is right. In fact, she could go further. Theres old, and then theres old and for urban landscapes increasingly vulnerable to floods, adverse weather, carbon overload, choking pollution and an unhealthy disconnect between humans and nature, theres a strong case for looking beyond old technologies to ancient technologies.

It is eminently possible to weave ancient knowledge of how to live symbiotically with nature into how we shape the cities of the future, before this wisdom is lost forever. We can rewild our urban landscapes, and apply low-tech ecological solutions to drainage, wastewater processing, flood survival, local agriculture and pollution that have worked for indigenous peoples for thousands of years, with no need for electronic sensors, computer servers or extra IT support.

This month, Julia Watson, a lecturer in urban design at Harvard and Columbia Universities, launched her book Lo-Tek: Design by Radical Indigenism, with publisher Taschen. Its the result of more than 20 years of travelling to research the original smart settlements, through an architects lens.

She visited the Madan people in Iraq, who weave buildings and floating islands from reeds; the Zuni people in New Mexico, who create waffle gardens to capture, store and manipulate water for desert crop farming; and the subak rice terraces of Bali. Watson walked the living tree-root bridges that can withstand adverse weather better than any human-made structure, and that allow the Khasi hill tribe in Northern India to travel between villages during the monsoon floods.

Nature is smart, and our ancient wisdom tells us how to live with nature in a smart way

There are so many different ways you can rewild cities, says Watson and its not just a case of plonking an ancient system in a city, but rather adapting complex ecosystems for different types of places with their own unique requirements. Take a current proposal she is working on for the high-rise city of Shenzhen on the Pearl River estuary by Hong Kong. It was once a fishing village, then a textile town, and it just skyrocketed, says Watson. All of the fishponds and polders and dykes and wetlands that absorb all the water in that delta landscape are being erased. So the city is developing in a way thats erasing the indigenous resilience in the landscape.

But you dont have to erase to go forwards, she says. You can leapfrog and embed local intelligence, using a nature-based traditional Chinese technology thats climate resilient, ecologically resilient and culturally resilient. And we can make beautiful urban spaces with them as well.

Kongjian Yu, a design professor at Peking University, agrees with this philosophy. Known as the sponge cities architect, Yu creates urban landscapes in China that passively absorb rainwater, using permeable pavements, green roofs and terraced wetland parks that flood during monsoon. If wetlands are situated upriver of the buildings, they will flood before the water reaches the city proper.

The parks have brought fish and birds back to cities, says Yu, and people love it. The projects, he says, are performing well, and many of them have been tested for over 10 years, and can certainly be replicable in other parts of the world. In fact, this month he has visited Bangladesh, ironically, helping their smart city project, where he has convinced the minister in charge that nature is smart, and our ancient wisdom tells us how to live with nature in a smart way.

Copenhagen, too, has opted for a dumb or, as local planners call it, a green and blue solution to their increasing flood risks: namely, a series of parks that can become lakes during storms. The city estimated they would cost a third less than building levees and new sewers, and come with the added ecological benefits of rewilding. An abandoned military site was cleaned up in 2010 and rewilded into a nature reserve and common for grazing animals, the Amager Nature Centre a vast park with not only happy people meandering and cycling around but insects, protected amphibians, rare birds and deer.

But dumb cities can be even smarter than that. Not only can functioning wetlands defend cities against floods and restore nature, they can clean wastewater. And they can do it more efficiently than sewage-treatment works all while absorbing a whole lot of carbon, nitrogen, sulphur and methane, and creating a fishing industry and fertile farmland. No water, energy, treatment chemicals or fish feed required. The worlds largest such system, in east Kolkata in India, involves the citys sewage feeding the fish. It saves the city approximately $22m (17m) a year in running costs for a waste treatment plant. The water can be used for irrigation, saving a further 500,000 in water and fertiliser costs. And it enables much of the citys food to be grown locally.

Or, as waters rise globally, we can learn from Makoko, the incredible city-on-stilts in Lagos that is home to 80,000 residents. Its floating school sustainable and solar-fuelled has captured the worlds imagination. Rotterdam has already introduced a floating forest and farm, and is developing plans for a sustainable floating city.

As for dumb transport, there can be no doubt that walking or cycling are superior to car travel over short urban distances: zero pollution, zero carbon emissions, free exercise.

And theres a dumb solution to the spread of air conditioning, one of the greatest urban energy guzzlers: more plants. A study in Madison, Wisconsin found that urban temperatures can be 5% cooler with 40% tree cover. Green roofs with high vegetation density can cool buildings by up to 60%. Or you could just think like a bug: architects are mimicking the natural cooling airflows of termite burrows. Mick Pearces 350,000 sq ft Eastgate Centre in Zimbabwes capital, Harare, completed in the 1990s, is still held up as a paragon of dumb air conditioning: all it needs are fans, and uses a tenth of the energy of the buildings next door.

A few token green walls and trees wont do it. Watson calls for a focus on permaculture: self-sustaining ecosystems. If its an urban forest, she says, perhaps its in the centre of the city, perhaps its on the periphery, or it could be an interior environment an atrium designed to have a complex ecosystem thats also agriculturally productive.

There are hundreds of nature-based technologies that have never been explored. For example, Watson envisions stunning urban uses for the living root bridges of the Khasi hill tribe: They could be grown to reduce the urban heat island effect by increasing canopy cover along streets, with roots trained into trusses that integrate with the architecture of the street in essence, removing the distinction between tree and building. They could even retain their original use during seasonal floods living, physical bridges over the water.

In April, Greta Thunberg and Guardian columnist George Monbiot made a rallying video calling for more trees and wetlands and plant cover to tackle the climate crisis. Cities can be part of this push.

The idea of smart cities is born of what Watson describes as the same human superiority-complex that thinks nature should be controlled. Whats missing is symbiosis. Life on Earth is based upon symbiosis, Watson says. She suggests we replace the saying survival of the fittest with survival of the most symbiotic. Not as catchy, perhaps. But smarter.

Follow Guardian Cities on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to join the discussion and catch up on our best stories

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Who Are The 2020 Womens March Speakers? The Organization Says No One. – Sara A. Carter

Posted: January 14, 2020 at 6:42 pm

The fourth annual womens march will not feature any speakers this year and will instead host a Week of Action leading up to the event, the organization tells SaraACarter.com.

A spokesperson for the Womens March told this reporter that the organization is doing things a bit differently. Instead, the spokesperson said there will be a weeks worth of events leading up to the march and included a link to the schedule of events.

The week will kick off with the first event Tuesday evening to discuss Reproductive Rights, Health and Justice, & The 2020 Landscape.

Heading the discussion will be Kelley Robinson, Executive Director of Planned Parenthood Action Fund & Katie OConnor, Demand Justice, and Fatima Goss Graves, President and CEO of the National Womens Law Center. Many of these women have been outspoken opponents of the Trump administration and its policies.

Tuesdays panel will feature Jane Liu, Legal Director of the National Asian Pacific American Womens Forum (NAPAWF), Aza Nedhari, Executive Director of Mamatoto Village, Monica Simpson, Executive Director of SisterSong, and Ilana Solomon, National Campaigns Director of NARAL.

Since its inception, the Womens March has been riddled with anti-Trump messaging. The organization also found itself at the center of a scandal promoting anti-Semitic speakers including Linda Sarsour and its co-chairs Tamika Mallory and Carmen Perez, who openly supported Nation of Islam Leader Louis Farrakhan who once called Jews termites.

Tablet Magazines extensive report on the matter exposed that. Several key supporters pulled out of the event including the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and several of its key politicians including Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL).

While I still firmly believe in its values and mission, I cannot associate with the national marchs leaders and principles, which refuse to completely repudiate anti-Semitism and all forms of bigotry, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz wrote in a USA Today op-ed. I cannot walk shoulder to shoulder with leaders who lock arms with outspoken peddlers of hate.

In 2019, the march saw dwindling crowd sizes. Its unclear if thats a reflection of the anti-Semitism controversy or the freezing weather that day. Sara A. Carter spoke with marchers in a Hannity exclusive last year.

I think it was shocking for me it was really disturbing that a lot of the people that I spoke with didnt just take a step back and say absolutely, we condemn it. Its completely anti-Semitic. I brought out the statements that were made by Louis Farrakhan. I asked them directly: do you condemn these statements and so many people had such a difficult time actually saying that they condemned the statements and that was really disturbing, Carter told Hannity.

She continued, On the other hand, there were a lot of young people marching, some of them didnt even know what was going on the week prior, they didnt even understand what the controversy was about others just wanted to stay away from it altogether and some on the other hand did say they did not condone it, they did condemn it and that they were showing up anyways because this was part of their cause this is something that they wanted to be a part of despite the leadership.

This years march will take place on Jan. 18. Following the march, there will be a drag brunch on Sunday where Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) will be accepting via video message.

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