Tag Archives: Also

Yep, Tantalus Was Also The Developer Of The Legend Of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD

The Legend Of Zelda Skyward Sword HD© Nintendo

It’s becoming increasingly common for Nintendo to lend out its IP and call on the services of external studios to help remake and remaster its classic library of games – so it’s no surprise to discover that the company’s latest release, The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD, was also handled by someone else.

As highlighted by the Australian Nintendo fansite Vooks.net, the developer of the enhanced Switch port was the Melbourne-based Aussie developer Tantalus. This information was confirmed in the credits of the game. While the studio may not be widely known, it actually has a bit of history with The Legend of Zelda series dating back to 2016.

Back during the troubled Wii U generation, it was responsible for the HD version of The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess from the Wii and GameCube era. Series producer, Eiji Aonuma, originally recruited the studio because he felt it had “strong developing skills” across a number of remakes:

“I felt they had strong developing skills from seeing their work across remakes of previous titles, so I decided to ask Tantalus to remake this title.”

Earlier on in the Switch’s lifecycle, the studio helped out with Sonic Mania and RiME. How do you feel about this developer returning for Skyward Sword? Did you enjoy Twilight Princess HD back in the day? Leave a comment down below.

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This post originally posted here Nintendo Life | Latest News

The bizarre botany that makes corn a fruit, a grain, and also (kind of) a vegetable

This post has been updated. It was originally published on September 24, 2019.

We all know the “is a tomato a fruit?” debate (correct answer: yes, but you still shouldn’t put it in a fruit salad). Now we’d like to bring you a whole new botanical question you never knew you had: Is corn a fruit or a vegetable—or is it a grain?

The answer is more technical than you might think, and to fully understand it you’ll need a little primer on corn biology. So away we go!

A single corn stalk grows several ears (which are the female bits of the plant) and has one tassel up top (which, as you can guess, is the male part). The tassel produces pollen, which is the semen of the plant world. Before those ears look anything like the juicy kernel-covered cob you eat, they’re essentially a hard cylinder covered in hundreds of unfertilized ovules. Each of these ovules grows a single silk, which reaches up and out of the top of the husk, where it dangles in the hopes of catching a bit of pollen on its little sticky hairs. If it does, the silk grows a pollen tube, enabling the male genes to travel towards the ovule and fertilize it. That fertilized ovule will grow into a single kernel.

That only has to happen 400-600 more times to make a whole ear of corn. It also explains why sometimes you get cobs with bare patches—sometimes not every ovule gets fertilized.

Still with me? Good. Here’s why all of this matters.

We differentiate between fruits and vegetables depending on which bits of the plant we eat. If we eat the part derived from the ovaries or other reproductive tissue, we call it a fruit, explains Marvin Pritts, a horticulture researcher and professor at Cornell University. Everything else we call a vegetable. “Corn is a seed derived from the flower/ovary of the corn plant,” he says, “so is technically a fruit.”

More specifically, corn is a caryopsis, which is a type of fruit in which the seed coat is tightly fused with the pericarp (that’s the fleshy bit, like the part of a peach that you eat). This means they don’t have a substantial fleshy layer, helping them dry out well. You might know caryopses better by their common name: grains.

Thus, grains are a type of fruit. And that means corn is both a grain and fruit in the same way that wheat, millet, and oats are.

This brings us back to the final piece of the question: is corn a vegetable? Botanically and scientifically speaking, the answer is no. But here’s the thing: in common parlance, “vegetable” is essentially meaningless because it’s completely arbitrary.

[Related: High-fructose corn syrup vs. sugar: Which is actually worse?]

Think about what comes to mind when you conjure up an image of a vegetable. Some of it is probably accurate—lettuce, carrots, potatoes. But a lot of it is likely wrong. We have this general image of vegetables as all the produce that’s not sweet or super juicy. To most of us a fruit is a thing you can eat straight. You can pick up a peach or an apple and snack on it. You probably wouldn’t just bite into a tomato (though honestly, why not? we eat them raw in slices!) and similarly you at least need to cook corn before you chomp down, and you’d preferably add a little salt and butter.

Unfortunately that’s not a great rule of thumb if you want to be technical about it. You’d also probably roast a pumpkin or blanch peas, but they’re both actually fruits. And conversely we often eat bell peppers raw much like the fruits that they truly are, yet a lot of people lump them into the veggie category.

There’s a decent, if highly philosophical, argument to be made that we should go by the categorization that most people use. If folks think of squashes as vegetables, maybe they are vegetables. The same might go for corn. For his part, Pritts acknowledges that we do eat corn as we do other veggies, but notes that still doesn’t technically make it one. And yet lots of people do consider it a vegetable, including the US Department of Agriculture, and since “vegetable” is an arbitrary, catch-all category, maybe corn is a vegetable too. We’ll leave it to you to decide which definitions you want to abide by—there’s a decent argument for all of them.

Sara Chodosh

Sara Chodoshis an associate editor at PopSci where she writes about everything from vaccine hesitancy to extreme animal sex. She got her master’s degree in science journalism at NYU’s Science Health and Environmental Reporting Program, and is getting a second master’s in data visualization from the University of Girona. Contact the author here.

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Read more here >>> Science – Popular Science

Cryptocurrency price LIVE: Bitcoin plummets as gains wiped – Musk’s Dogecoin also drops

Alexandra Clark, Sales Trader at the UK based digital asset broker GlobalBlock, wrote: “Cynthia Lummis has encouraged ‘people to buy and hold’ bitcoin in their portfolios, adding that with Congress flooding the economy with trillions and trillions of dollars, ‘there’s no way’ the value of the US dollar will not be debased.

“As well as promoting bitcoin as a store of value, the senator also defended Bitcoin’s environmental record, inviting miners to the state of Wyoming.

For the first time in weeks, bitcoin managed to gain over the weekend, which corresponds with the largest ever downward adjustment in bitcoin mining difficulty and a spike in daily accumulation by whales.

“Bitcoin mining difficulty fell by a staggering 28 percent this week and whales caused the biggest daily accumulation spike of 2021 with 60,000 BTC being purchased in one day.

He added: “Grayscale has rebalanced its portfolio in a way where Cardano (ADA) is now the company’s third-largest holding.

“As it stands, Bitcoin (BTC) accounts for 67.47% of the fund, Ethereum (ETH) 25.39%, Cardano (ADA) 4.26%, Bitcoin Cash (BCH) 1.03%, Litecoin (LTC) 0.99% and Chainlink (LINK) 0.86%. The firm also revealed it is exploring Solana, Polygon, and a range of DeFi tokens for single asset trust funds.

Algorand also presents exciting opportunities. Since its launch in 2019, it has secured hundreds of millions in funding for its development and has numerous third parties operating within its ecosystem.

“Whilst it is not yet a threat to Ethereum or Cardano, with its smart contract capabilities, solid transaction speeds, and focus on being a bridge between centralized and decentralized systems, it certainly looks promising.

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Read more here >>> Daily Express :: Finance Feed

Cryptocurrency price LIVE: Bitcoin crashes towards $30,000 – ETH and DOGE also way down

After El Salvador became the first country in the world to approve the cryptocurrency as legal tender, Express.co.uk asked: “Should the UK accept cryptocurrency as official currency?”

The poll – which ran from 12pm yesterday to 7am today – received 1,287 votes and 72 percent (928) of voters said bitcoin should not be accepted as currency in the UK.

Just 27 percent (342) said the cryptocurrency should be, while only one percent (17) voted they don’t know.

One Express.co.uk said: “Absolutely not.

“it’s built on a constantly collapsing Pyramid scheme model.

“And when it crashes it crashes hard.

“Nothing you want in a traditional currency.”

Someone else commented: “Accepting a digital currency is a fatal step towards losing the real one in your hand, pocket & wallet, as the powers that be want to control you with a cashless society.

“We must not accept it.”

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Finance Feed

Naomi Osaka withdraws from Wimbledon after Rafael Nadal also pulls out of Grand Slam

The Spaniard missed out on his chance to win Grand Slam No 21 at the French Open, losing to Novak Djokovic in the semi-finals.

But, while Osaka is planning to be back in action at the Tokyo Olympics, Nadal insists he needs more time to look after his body.

“Hi all, I have decided not to participate at this year’s Championships at Wimbledon and the Olympic Games in Tokyo,” Nadal tweeted.

“It’s never an easy decision to take but after listening to my body and discuss it with my team I understand that it is the right decision.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

Luspatercept Benefit Also in Non-Transfusion-Dependent Thalassemia

The first-in-class erythroid maturation agent luspatercept (Reblozyl) is already approved for the treatment of anemia in adult patients with beta thalassemia who require red blood cell (RBC) transfusions.

Now it has also shown to be beneficial for patients with beta thalassemia who are not dependent on transfusions. There is no drug specifically indicated as yet for this patient population, who often develop chronic anemia and iron overload.

The new results come from the phase 2 BEYOND trial, and were presented at the European Hematology Association 2021 annual meeting, held virtually because of the ongoing pandemic.

“We now have a new agent that showed benefit in improving anemia with non-transfusion-dependent thalassemia,” lead author Ali T. Taher, MD, PhD, told Medscape Medical News.

“With the rising body of evidence on the detrimental impact of anemia in these patients, this presents a landmark achievement for a patient population who do not have many treatment options,” said Taher, director of the Basile Cancer Institute at the American University of Beirut Medical Center, Beirut, Lebanon.

In commenting on the study, Kevin H.M. Kuo, MD, an assistant professor in the Division of Hematology at the University of Toronto, Canada, said the findings are encouraging in addressing the non-transfusion subgroup’s treatment needs. 

“I think luspatercept is an exciting addition to the armamentarium in the treatment of beta thalassemia,” he told Medscape Medical News. “I think this is something we have always looked forward to because these non-transfusion-dependent patients have been a very neglected subgroup of patients.”

“This is mainly because there is a perception that they tend to do better than their transfusion-dependent counterparts, but we realize that’s not the case because these patients have complications stemming from both hemolysis and ineffective erythropoiesis,” Kuo said.

“So, I’m pleased that we may be seeing a better treatment option for these patients.”

Results From the BEYOND Trial

For the multicenter, double-blind, phase 2 BEYOND trial, 145 patients with non-transfusion-dependent beta thalassemia, who received no more than 5 RBC units in the 24 weeks prior to randomization, were randomly assigned to treatment with luspatercept 1 mg/kg, with titration up to 1.25 mg/kg (n = 96) or placebo (n = 49) subcutaneously every 3 weeks for at least 48 weeks. The patients had a median age of 40, and 41.7% were male

Throughout the trial, both groups received the best supportive care, with sporadic RBC transfusions when needed and iron chelation therapy.

Twenty patients (13.8%) received RBC transfusions (maximum 5 units) in the 24 weeks prior to treatment. The median baseline hemoglobin level was 8.2 g/dL (range 5.3-10.1).

The primary endpoint was an increase of at least 1.0 g/dL in hemoglobin from baseline to weeks 13 through 24 in the absence of RBC transfusions. This was achieved by as many as 74 of the 96 luspatercept patients (77.1%), compared with none in the placebo group (P < .0001).

Of the 55 patients with mean baseline hemoglobin levels of less than 8.5 g/dL in the luspatercept group, 40 (72.7%) achieved the primary endpoint vs none in the placebo group (P < .0001).

And of 41 with a mean baseline hemoglobin of 8.5 g/dL or higher in the luspatercept group, 34 (82.9%) achieved the primary endpoint vs none in the placebo group (P < .0001).

Overall, 52.1% of patients in the luspatercept arm achieved the secondary endpoint of an increase of 1.5 g/dL hemoglobin or more at weeks 13 through 24, vs none in the placebo arm (P < .0001).

The need for transfusions also declined with luspatercept, with most treated patients (89.6%) not requiring RBC transfusions at weeks 1 through 24, compared with 67.3% in the placebo group (P = .0013).

Patient-Reported Outcomes

There were no significant differences in patient-reported scores of tiredness and weakness among the patient groups at weeks 13 through 24 and the scores were marginally improved in the luspatercept group at weeks 37 through 48 (P = .051).

The differences were similar in patients with a baseline hemoglobin of less than 8.5 g/dL. However, the improvement in scores correlated with the level of hemoglobin increase, Taher noted.

“When we actually look at patients who had an increase in hemoglobin levels, we see a clearer benefit in the tiredness and weakness score,” he told Medscape Medical News.

“And for me as a clinician, this is what matters and what I expect, as we don’t expect patients who did not have hemoglobin improvement to have better quality of life,” he added.

Luspatercept was well-tolerated, with the most common treatment-emergent adverse events of any grade as follows: bone pain, in 36.5% of luspatercept patients and 6.1% of placebo patients; headache, 30.2% vs 20.4%; and arthralgia, 20.2% vs 14.3%.

The rates of treatment-emergent adverse events of grade 3 or higher were similar in the luspatercept vs placebo groups. There were no deaths or thromboembolic or thrombophlebitis events in either group.

Kuo noted that a key factor to be looked at in further studies is how the hemoglobin improvements relate to clinically meaningful patient-reported outcomes.

“An important question is how much does the hemoglobin increase [with luspatercept] correlate with changes in patient-reported outcomes,” he said.

“This was only up to 48 weeks, so we will have to see if there is more of a long-term benefit.”

An “Understudied” Population

EHA president John G. Gribben, DSc, agreed that the study importantly addresses an “understudied population” of beta thalassemia.

“Being classified as non-transfusion-dependent does not mean that these patients never need transfusion and indeed the decreased transfusion requirement was one of the positive aspects of the study,” he told Medscape Medical News.

“But there were also decreases in other factors like decreased iron overload, etc, which means that we could expect decreased long-term morbidities for these patients,” said Gribben, director of the Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre, University of London, UK,.

“As always, the number of patients was relatively small in this study and there is a need for longer term follow-up, but we were excited to see these data presented at this year’s EHA congress,” he said.  

The study was supported by Celgene, a Bristol-Myers Squibb Company. Taher disclosed research and/or consultancy relationships with Agios, Celgene, Ionis Pharmaceuticals, Novartis Pharmaceuticals, and Vifor Pharma. Kuo was an investigator on the BELIEVE Trial, involving luspatercept in transfusion-dependent thalassemia patients. He has been a consultant for Agios, Celgene/BMS, and Forma and has taken part in research collaboration with Phoenicia Biosciences.

European Hematology Association (EHA) 2021 Annual Meeting: Abstract S101. Presented June 11, 2021.

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This post originally appeared on Medscape Medical News Headlines

Take it down! Scots demand removal of Union Jack flag – 'year-round poppies' also mocked

The Airdrie for Independence group will voice their disgust at the flagpole in West End Park, North Lanarkshire at 1pm on Monday. This comes an hour before Scotland kick off their Euro 2020 campaign against the Czech Republic.

Ahead of the protest, independence activist Jim Cassidy even claimed that the flag had “political and sectarian connotations”.

He vocally complained to North Lanarkshire Council (NLC) about the Union Jack replacing the Saltire around two weeks ago.

The council owns the land which is maintained by the voluntary group Friends of West End Park.

The group has yet to comment publicly, but in a leaked letter seen by The National, they said it was apolitical and, “very saddened and surprised” that their upgrade to the flagpole was “somehow associated to a political/national cause”.

READ MORE: UK lockdown: Scientist warns stakes have just gone into Covid’s favour

The flagpole is adjacent to the town’s war memorial, which is also maintained by the group.

In the letter they said they had received several requests from ex-service personnel, veterans and their families, indicating “they felt it would be right that we gave consideration to a British flag”.

Mr Cassidy, who described himself as a former British serviceman, dismissed their reasoning and called on the Saltire to be reinstated.

Writing on his Facebook page, he said: “I contacted the Labour leader of North Lanarkshire Council Jim Logue, who was very helpful and who informed me that having spoken to someone representing ‘Friends of West End Park’ group … that our national flag would be replaced as soon as one could be sourced.

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“I was therefore disappointed to be contacted yesterday by someone who had written to the group, who made me aware that they had reneged on the agreement with North Lanarkshire Council and had decided to keep the British flag flying instead.

“Having seen the letter they sent, I have to say that I was concerned at their actions and am unconvinced as to the motivations behind their decision.”

He added: “They state that the group is non-political and non-sectarian, but that doesn’t mean that you can be blind to the political and sectarian connotations linked to the British flag, and one would have had to be living under a rock to have missed them.

“The Saltire which flew there was something all our community had no argument over, and its removal coincides with British Government attempts to rebrand much of Scotland with the British flag in a programme of ‘Union-Jackery’, so it is understandable why people cannot simply accept this is simply an innocent misunderstanding.

“As a former member of the armed forces who used to parade every year with the Royal Engineers on Remembrance Sunday, I do not believe that the wishes of a few veterans and their families should be given greater consideration than the entire community of Airdrie.

“The British Nationalist community does have a particular focus on a few key areas, such as the flying of the British flag, year-round poppy displays and veterans’ causes, so the decision to remove the Saltire and replace it with the British must be viewed in that context.”

A spokesperson for the council said: “The Friends of West End and Centenary Park is a voluntary community organisation run by an independent committee who do a fantastic job looking after the park for the benefit of the local people and visitors.

“Flying the Saltire or Union Flag is at the discretion of the committee.”

Express.co.uk has contacted the Friends of West End Park for comment.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: UK Feed

Novak Djokovic has 'not ideal' Italian Open situation as Rafael Nadal also worried

Novak Djokovic could “struggle” when he steps onto court to take on Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in the Italian Open last-16 today because he will be in an unusual situation, according to Mark Petchey. The world No 1 is usually one of the headliners at every event he plays, which means he is given an evening slot on the schedule.
However, the Italian Open has placed his showdown with Davidovich Fokina first up on centre court in Rome.

That means his match will get underway at 10am local time (9am BST) which brings many problems for the 20-time Grand Slam winner.

Not only will his routine be broken up, but he will also have to deal with the glaring sun.

And Petchey reckons Djokovic may be affected as he tried to adjust to the new conditions.

“I don’t think he is going to be delighted because the sun, when they are teeing it up at 10am, is going to be particularly awkward,” he told Amazon Prime.

“He is not going to love the fact he is on early.

“He has been practising at that time this week but the sun is particularly awkward for an hour and a bit.

“You pretty much have to kick it in and he is somebody that has struggled with that in the past.

“These are the little nuances that you have in these tournaments. Suddenly the schedule of play comes out and that is not ideal for him.”

Fellow pundit Daniela Hantuchova also thinks Djokovic will find it strange getting out of bed so early.

She said: “It will be interesting to see how Novak handles that early rise because I know he likes his sleep.

“When you are on at 10am it means you have to get up at 6.30am so it is going to be a rough morning.”

Djokovic is not the only key player who may struggle with the schedule as Rafael Nadal has also tabled complaints.

He wrapped up his demanding win over Jannik Sinner at 9.40pm local time last night and he will be back on court at 1pm this afternoon against Denis Shapovalov.

“I am not happy that they put me on the third turn without a not before because It’s twenty to ten and I can play tomorrow at one,” Nadal said.

“I’ll have to be ready at least by 11:30. It’s exaggerated, really. It’s not right, it’s badly done, I say it as I think it is.”

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

Tesco recalls ice lolly also sold in Asda, Sainsbury's and Iceland – 'do not eat'

A food recall is issued by a supermarket or a brand when an item is unsafe to eat. This could be because there are traces of foreign materials in the food, or that it contains an ingredient that has not been declared on its label.
The supermarket added that no receipt is required when customers return the product to their nearest Tesco store.

The Twister Peak-A-Blue ice lollies come in a pack of five and all batches are affected.

The ice lollies are also sold separately in ice cream freezers.

Wall’s recalled the product first and a statement was also issued by the Food Standards Agency (FSA).

The FSA publishes news of food recalls when a product is faulty and could cause damage to people if eaten.

In a statement about the Twister Peak-A-Blue ice lollies, the FSA said: “Wall’s is recalling Twister Peek-A-Blue ice lollies because they contain milk which is not mentioned on the label.

“This means the product is a possible health risk for anyone with an allergy or intolerance to milk or milk constituents.”

The organisation also mentioned that Wall’s has issued a point-of-sale notice to its customers, explaining why the product is being recalled and telling them what to do if they have bought the product.

Wall’s said: “The safety of the people that buy and use our products is always our number one priority, which is why we are taking the voluntary precaution of recalling all batches as it could pose a safety risk to those people with an allergy or intolerance to milk.”

The brand advised that customers should contact its careline team for further information, either by calling 0800 146252 or emailing [email protected]

Wall’s Twister Peak-A-Blue ice lollies are not only sold in Tesco, but in Sainsbury’s, Iceland, and Asda too.

As well as the ice lollies, Tesco is recalling one of its dairy products.

The President Mini Cheese Selection is being recalled by the supermarket as the item may contain nuts which are not mentioned on the label.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Life and Style Feed
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Chelsea 'jump ahead' of Man Utd in Varane transfer race with PSG also keen

Author: [email protected] (Darren Wells)
This post originally appeared on Mirror – Football

Chelsea have reportedly ‘jumped ahead’ of Manchester United in the race to sign Real Madrid star Raphael Varane.

The 28-year-old defender is set to enter the final 12 months of his contract at the Bernabeu this summer and is still debating his future.

Varane is a key player under boss Zinedine Zidane but Madrid could be forced to cash in if they cannot convinced him to pen fresh terms before the start of next season.

Paris Saint-Germain are also keen on the French World Cup winner, who is facing extra competition for his place at Madrid next season amid the expected arrival of Bayern Munich’s David Alaba on a free transfer.

Chelsea are keen on signing Raphael Varane ahead of Man Utd and PSG
Chelsea are keen on signing Raphael Varane ahead of Man Utd and PSG

According to Spanish publication Mundo Deportivo, Varane is not convinced his future lay at Madrid beyond the end of his current deal, with Chelsea now prepared to fork out £61million to land his services.

That could give the Blues the upper hand in the race over the likes of United, who are being careful with their spending and may see Varane as an expensive outlay they cannot stretch to in the current climate.

United are currently in the process of trying to tie down Eric Bailly to a new contract and the club are thought to be prioritising other areas of their squad to strengthen.

They could instead focus their efforts on signing Sergio Ramos, who is out of contract this summer.

PSG represent a significant threat to Chelsea’s hopes of landing Varane, who could welcome a return to his home country.

While Thomas Tuchel needs no convincing of Varane’s quality, he will be able to witness his talents at close quarters when the teams meet in the Champions League semi-final starting this week.

Varane missed both legs of Madrid’s quarter-final victory over Liverpool due to testing positive for coronavirus but has been back in action for their last two domestic fixtures.