August 25, 2011
Renault Designs DeZir, an Electric Beauty
Powered by an electric motor, Renault’s DeZir is a two-seater coupe.
DeZir’s styling expresses passion.
Under the leadership of Laurens van den Acker, Renault’s Design Department has taken its inspiration from the brand’s new signature ‘Drive the Change!’.
This approach coincides with the introduction of a new Renault design language that takes its inspiration from the three keywords which communicate the brand’s vision, namely ‘simple’, ‘sensuous’ and ‘warm’.
According to Renault, DeZir’s this design vision also builds on the bonds that are gradually forged between the brand and its customers. The first step, explains the French Carmaker, involves ‘falling in love’, an experience that is illustrated by DeZir’s powerful, sensuous styling and bright red finish; red being the color associated with passion.
DeZir is powered by an electric motor mounted in a mid-rear position to optimize weight distribution over the front and rear wheels.
August 14, 2011
Race Around the World — Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12
All the participating teams are busy fine-tuning their preparations for a race that will cover 39,000 nautical miles, visit 10 countries and finish in Galway, Ireland in July 2012.
Photo: Cascais, Portugal. 30th July 2011. Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing starts its 2000 mile qualifying sail. Photo Credit: Ian Roman/Volvo Ocean Race.
Photo: Groupama 4, skippered by Franck Cammas. Photo Credit: Yvan Zedda.
Photo: Delta Lloyd passes the finishing line.
Photo: Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing unveils its state-of-the-art Volvo Open 70 in Portofino, Italy. Photo Credit: Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing.
Photo: Telefonica Blue at the start of the Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race. Photo Credit: Rick Tomlinson.
Photo: Solent, UK. 8th August 2011. Team Sanya training for the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12. Photo Credit: Tim Stonton/Volvo Ocean Race.
Photo: PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG Propulsion training onboard Mar Mostro off Newport, Rhode Island, USA. Photo Credit: Dan Armstrong.
• The next Volvo Ocean Race will start in the Spanish port of Alicante in the autumn of 2011 and finish in Galway, Ireland during the summer of 2012.
• The course will include stopovers in Cape Town (South Africa), Abu Dhabi (UAE), Sanya (China), Auckland (New Zealand), Itajai (Brazil), Miami (USA), Lisbon (Portugal) and Lorient (France).
• The first 31,250 nautical-mile race first took place over 37 years ago (as the Whitbread Round the World Race 1973-74), testing the crews against some of the most ferocious elements that man can encounter.
• The 2011-12 race will be the 11th edition of the event.
• The design of the boat is regulated and the boat is built for speed.
August 13, 2011
UN Year of Youth “Culmination Celebration” Spotlights Girls and Young Women
Photo: Monique Coleman, UN Youth Champion for the International Year of Youth, co-hosts the Year’s “Culmination Celebration” with a focus on the role girls and young women play in advancing dialogue and mutual understanding. August 11, 2011. United Nations, New York. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas.
Photo: A view of audience members during the UN Year of Youth “Culmination Celebration” focusing on the role girls and young women play in advancing dialogue and mutual understanding. August 11, 2011. United Nations, New York. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas.
Photo: Begona Lasagabaster, UN Women Advisor on Political Participation, speaks at the UN Year of Youth “Culmination Celebration”, an event focusing on the role of girls and young women in advancing dialogue and mutual understanding. August 11, 2011. United Nations, New York. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas.
August 7, 2011
Scholastic International Introduces the Everyday Book Box for Educators and Students
Global children’s publishing education and media company Scholastic Inc. today announced the launch of the Everyday Book Box, a leveled reading English-language book collection designed for the international market.
The Everyday Book Box contains 50 individual book titles, fiction and non-fiction, each marked with a Guided Reading level. There are three leveled collections available: Red (ages 5-6), Yellow (ages 6-7), and Blue (ages 7-8). Schools may also choose between books printed in American English or Commonwealth English.
Photo: “CBS Early Show” Co-anchor Erica Hill gets a big hug from Clifford The Big Red Dog at the Scholastic Store in New York City. Clifford the Big Red Dog is an American children’s book series first published in 1963.
In addition to the books, each Everyday Book Box contains a resource CD with activities, lesson plans, and reading tips for teachers and parents.
“The Everyday Book Box is a valuable resource that will help children build English fluency and reading skills,” said Shane Armstrong, President of Scholastic International Growth Markets.
August 6, 2011
Standard & Poor's lowers long-term sovereign credit rating on the United States of America
Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services said today that it lowered its long-term sovereign credit rating on the United States of America to ‘AA+’ from ‘AAA’. Standard & Poor’s also said that the outlook on the long-term rating is negative. At the same time, Standard & Poor’s affirmed its ‘A-1+’ short-term rating on the U.S. In addition, Standard & Poor’s removed both ratings from CreditWatch, where they were placed on July 14, 2011, with negative implications.
“We lowered our long-term rating on the U.S. because we believe that the prolonged controversy over raising the statutory debt ceiling and the related fiscal policy debate indicate that further near-term progress containing the growth in public spending, especially on entitlements, or on reaching an agreement on raising revenues is less likely than we previously assumed and will remain a contentious and fitful process. We also believe that the fiscal consolidation plan that Congress and the Administration agreed to this week falls short of the amount that we believe is necessary to stabilize the general government debt burden by the middle of the decade,” Standard & Poor’s said in a statement.
“The political brinksmanship of recent months highlights what we see as America’s governance and policymaking becoming less stable, less effective, and less predictable than what we previously believed. The statutory debt ceiling and the threat of default have become political bargaining chips in the debate over fiscal policy.”
“Our opinion is that elected officials remain wary of tackling the structural issues required to effectively address the rising U.S. public debt burden in a manner consistent with a ‘AAA’ rating and with ‘AAA’ rated sovereign peers (Canada, France, Germany, and the U.K.).”
“The outlook on the long-term rating is negative. We could lower the long-term rating to ‘AA’ within the next two years,” the statement noted.
“As a very important source of strength and security, cherish public credit. One method of preserving it is, to use it as sparingly as possible; avoiding occasions of expense by cultivating peace, but remembering also that timely disbursements to prepare for danger frequently prevent much greater disbursements to repel it; avoiding likewise the accumulation of debt, not only by shunning occasions of expense, but by vigorous exertions in time of peace to discharge the debts, which unavoidable wars may have occasioned, not ungenerously throwing upon posterity the burthen, which we ourselves ought to bear.”
— GEORGE WASHINGTON, Farewell Address, September 17, 1796.