Legalization of recreational weed unlikely to kill pot black market right away

first_imgTORONTO – From texting a local dealer to dropping into a neighbourhood dispensary or ordering online, Canada’s black market for recreational marijuana has seen significant changes in recent years and, no doubt, will see more as the country hurtles toward a new world of legalization next summer.What does seem clear, however, is that the illegal market is unlikely to disappear in a puff of smoke come legalization day.“There’s a huge, complex system out there operating in the world that has been delivering excellent product to people at reasonable prices for 40 years now,” says Donald MacPherson, the executive director of the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition, an organization based out of Simon Fraser University that advocates for evidence-based policy-making and harm-reduction strategies.“It’s really the degree to which the regulated system can, over a period of years, encroach on as much of that pre-existing market as possible — that is the key question.”Talking to users quickly reveals three major strands that make up the current system, starting with the traditional approach: knowing a guy who knows a guy who gets you your pot. It’s familiar, it’s trusted, it feels safe.More recently, street-level dispensaries have offered a somewhat normal retail store-front experience, though some offer only delivery, but perhaps the biggest change has been in what appears to be a very Canadian phenomenon: the burst of website-based mail-order marijuana suppliers, or MOMs as they are known.A plethora of websites now feature different cannabis products along with prices and, in some cases, testimonials, contests, specials, and freebies. Most ask for proof of age in the form of an uploaded ID document — 18 or 19 is generally minimum — and payment takes place via Interac. The vacuum-packed product is shipped to the buyer via Canada Post or courier.Francois, 34, an IT professional in Quebec City, says he now buys exclusively online.“The convenience factor is what brought me there,” says Francois, who like other users interviewed for this article only wants his first name used. “It’s delivered to your doorstep. It’s super easy, it’s super discreet.”Marie-Helene, 26, a journalist in Montreal who smokes recreationally most evenings and weekends, says she doesn’t expect much will change for her post legalization. She plans to stick with buying from a guy she knows who sells medical grade weed. She trusts him, she says, and she enjoys the personal touch — he knows what strains she likes — and what she calls their “professional-business relationship.”“It doesn’t feel super shady,” she says. “It probably sounds silly (but) it’s the same thing as people who enjoy buying stuff in stores — because it’s customer experience.”Robert, 55, an IT professional based in St. Catharines, Ont., a recreational user for decades, says he now has a medical prescription and can avoid a black market he believes was tied to organized crime. The illegal market is doomed over time, he says, because every gram sold legally is a gram the black market won’t need to grow.“Most of my friends can’t wait to purchase legally and are quite jealous that I am currently able to do that,” Robert says. “Friends who have more libertarian leanings swear they will never buy from the Ontario government (but) I bet that changes. People are lazy and follow the path of least resistance, so if they can buy a couple grams in the same shopping plaza that they are grocery shopping, they are going to do that.”Statistics Canada data indicate about 12 per cent of Canadians aged 15 and older — or 3.6 million of us — reported in 2015 having used cannabis in the previous year, with 840,000 saying they used it most every day.Robert, however, says he thinks governments have hugely underestimated the prevalence of use and the Ontario government’s plan, for example, to start out with 40 retail outlets is laughable.“People don’t honestly answer surveys about sex and drugs, so nobody really understands how big the market will be,” Robert says. “I predict massive lines for legal weed next year.”Whether the black market shrinks and how quickly, observers say, will depend on what the legal market ends up looking like. It’s far from clear. Each province is charting its own course, with some tending toward maximum restrictions in terms of retail outlets, while others talk of stiff criminal sanctions for selling product to underage buyers or near schools.“These new laws are going to make the black market thrive,” says Chad, 40, who produces edible cannabis products in Toronto. “The black market is really vast. It’s really huge, right now, the competition.”The advent of dispensaries, he says, forced the black market to up its game in terms of quality and price. While the recent police crackdown on storefronts in Toronto has just pushed them underground, it has not dented what is a plentiful supply, he says. What Chad does believe is that many online sellers will go dark post-legalization.“Being online is just a way to get caught,” he says.The challenge facing federal and provincial governments, says MacPherson of the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition, is the fact that the current system is so large, diverse and filled with expertise — in other words, it is mature.Across Canada, hundreds if not thousands of small-scale growers along with some large grow-ops supply a seemingly ravenous consumer cohort that includes younger Canadians who have some of the highest usage rates in the world, according to various surveys.Canada’s police services, however, have expressed concern they won’t be ready to enforce the new laws by next summer. They told a Commons committee earlier this year that among other things, they would need more time to train officers and increase the ranks of those certified to do roadside drug-impaired driving testing.OPP Deputy Commissioner Rick Barnum warned that organized crime will flourish.“Policing will not be ready to go Aug. 1,” Barnum told the committee. “The damage that can be done between the time of new legislation and police officers ready to enforce the law in six months or a year can make it very, very hard to ever regain that foothold.”Enforcement is unlikely to make the illegal market go away, MacPherson says, but legalization does afford governments an opportunity to deploy policing resources elsewhere, and to make reliable public health information readily available as cannabis use becomes normalized in the way a glass of wine or beer already is.Most importantly, he says, displacing well entrenched networks now used for selling and buying good quality pot from people users know will require hassle-free access.“It’s a really interesting and complex thing that the government is trying to do,” MacPherson says. “It’s trying to take a very robust, complex pre-existing market and basically put it out of business by coming up with a better robust market.”last_img read more

Can Anyone In The NL Central Stop The Cubs

Based on projected wins or over/under win totals. Data gathered on March 16, 2017.Sources: Baseball Prospectus, Fangraphs, Clay Davenport, Las Vegas Review-Journal 5Cincinnati Reds7470747172.1 neil (Neil Paine, FiveThirtyEight senior sportswriter): So let’s get started with the elephant in the room of this division: The Cubs are once again huge favorites — 88 percent to win the division, according to FanGraphs. What can we say about them that hasn’t already been said ad nauseam during their World Series run last year?craigjedwards: Just replace “Will they end the drought?” with “Will they repeat?”neil: Or maybe “Will they form a dynasty?”natesilver: I would say that 88 percent to win the division intuitively sounds very high. We had them at 56 percent last year in a similar-ish situation.craigjedwards: 88 percent is high. Although last season both the Cardinals and Pirates appeared to have better teams than they do this season.natesilver: But bigger picture … What is there to say except that it’s been a while since we had a baseball team that was set up for this sort of long-term success?craigjedwards: They basically have the same team back, with few guys to worry about suffering precipitous aging declines, plus Jason Heyward possibly not being as bad as he was last season.natesilver: Let’s not forget that they’re also up one Kyle Schwarber this year (although he won’t help on defense).craigjedwards: The only question is the pitching rotation. In 2015 and 2016, they had all their top guys healthy and pitching well. It would take a major disaster in the rotation, but if they don’t meet expectations, that is where it is likely to come from.neil: Right — did that pitching performance last year contain a lot of luck in addition to skill? They allowed an MLB-low .255 batting average on balls in play (BABIP), 27 points lower than any other team.craigjedwards: Luck on the pitcher’s part? Yes, but that luck comes in the form of a fantastic defense. That is luck for the pitchers, not luck for the Cubs. That said, their BABIP is going to go up, since even guys who showed no prior ability to suppress contact did so last season. But even if they aren’t quite as good, it is reasonable to expect a low BABIP again because of that defense.neil: Another note on that pitching staff is that they were the oldest in the majors last year. And yet, only two other teams have relied on their starting rotation for more innings over the past two seasons than Chicago has. Is that a red flag? Or does it even matter?natesilver: Pitcher aging is weird. It’s kind of like: you’re good, until you’re suddenly not.craigjedwards: John Lackey is probably the most worrisome, because he is getting to an age where he could all of a sudden be finished.natesilver: I think the question is what sort of reinforcements they could bring in if Lackey turned into a pumpkin, for instance.craigjedwards: Jon Lester has also defied the aging curve over the past two seasons, and his velocity is down this spring, so that is a concern as well. Plus, it will be interesting to see how Willson Contreras plays out defensively at catcher, as he’ll be replacing David Ross as Lester’s personal catcher.natesilver: But let’s keep in mind that the Cubs are not only smart, but rich — so they’re a good candidate to bring a pitcher in at the trade deadline if they need one.craigjedwards: Chicago’s minor league system isn’t as deep as it was, since its young stars are already in the majors (or were traded last year), but there are a few high-end prospects they could move if they needed to.neil: I might also be grasping to find holes in the Cubs just to have something to debate. This staff could probably lose half its value from last year and they’d still win 90+ games.Chicago also seemed to effectively plug the roster holes that opened over the offseason: Lose Dexter Fowler? Here’s Jon Jay. Lose Aroldis Chapman? Here’s Wade Davis. Cut Jason Hammel loose? Here’s Brett Anderson. Like Nate said, they’re getting Schwarber back, too. And I guess it would be hard for Heyward to be worse.craigjedwards: Heyward has to be better than he was last season. Even if he never hits like he did before he got to the Cubs, an average-hitting Heyward with his defense and baserunning is a four-win player.natesilver: But we’re talking about a very high bar that the Cubs will have to clear to keep pace with their performance from last year. It’s incredibly hard to win 100+ games two years in a row these days. The last team to do it was St. Louis in 2004 and 2005.neil: Although maybe the craziest thing there is that, by Pythagoras, the Cubs “should” have won 107 games last year. They underachieved to 103 wins!Even 95 wins this year will probably be enough to take the division, though. Especially if the projections (see above) are to be believed.But I also think those projections are pretty shocking. They have Pittsburgh second?!? I was tempted to think that the Pirates’ 2013-15 mini-run basically ended with the 78 wins they posted in 2016.craigjedwards: Pittsburgh has put itself in a difficult position, trying to contend with a low payroll. Most teams at that end of the financial spectrum — like Milwaukee and Cincinnati, to keep it in the NL Central — can get a few good years in before having to do at least a minor rebuild, but the Pirates are still really close to contending for the next few seasons.neil: What went wrong last season?craigjedwards: Gerrit Cole wasn’t himself, Juan Nicasio didn’t work out as the Pirates’ annual reclamation project and Ivan Nova didn’t arrive until too late in the season. Yet they still weren’t that far off from contending last year, despite a really mediocre season from their best player, Andrew McCutchen.natesilver: The projection systems are all frustratingly non-committal on McCutchen, projecting him to bounce about halfway back instead of either the full recovery or the full collapse. Which undoubtedly makes sense if you average him over a whole range of scenarios. But it seems like there has to be a wide distribution of possibilities there, and that’s very much going to affect the Pirates’ fortunes.neil: Yeah, maybe no team’s season is hinging more on one player’s projection being in the high range rather than the low.craigjedwards: He’s also making the transition to an outfield corner, which is generally not good for a player’s value. But if you are just looking at last year’s defensive numbers (which generally isn’t big enough an indicator of a player’s ability), he’s going to get better just because he isn’t really one of the worst outfielders in baseball.natesilver: I get worried when the indicators for a guy’s athleticism are down. McCutchen doesn’t steal many bags any more. He grounded into a lot of double plays. He’s overmatched in center field, according to the advanced metrics.neil: And the list of McCutchen-like players from history is no help. Some were good after age 30 (Reggie Smith, Andre Dawson); others were already in decline (Vernon Wells, Matt Kemp).The other half of that tandem fighting for second place is the St. Louis Cardinals, who are slated for only 81 or 82 wins if you believe the projections above. Do we buy these third-place projections for St. Louis? Or are they discounting the Cards? (Who still won 86 games last year, with 88 Pythagorean wins.)craigjedwards: The projections for Pittsburgh are all bunched together around 82 wins, while the Cardinals have a couple 84s and a 78 from PECOTA (which keeps their average down). Most of the projections that have the Cardinals higher believe in their pitching and maybe a slight uptick on defense, while PECOTA doesn’t believe in either of those things.natesilver: It’s been a while since I tracked the performance of the different projection systems religiously, but the Cardinals were a team that had a long track record of beating their projections. Maybe it’s because they always tend to be good at player development and have guys play up to their 60th- or 70th-percentile numbers.neil: One area where it seems like there might be a lot of uncertainty is in the pitching, like you mentioned Craig, since their rotation was down from 2015’s fantastic performance. What was different last year, and will they be able to recapture that 2015 form this season?craigjedwards: The blame has mostly gone to the defense, and the Cardinals were pretty bad last year. But they also lost Lance Lynn and John Lackey from the rotation, and Michael Wacha and Adam Wainwright weren’t their usual pitching selves.neil: They’ve also done a lot of roster reshuffling and added Dexter Fowler (granting that his fielding metrics are sometimes mixed). Will all that help fix the defense? Or is that just wishful thinking?craigjedwards: I think Fowler will make the defense better. Randal Grichuk moves from center to left, where, defensively, he’s a big upgrade on Matt Holliday and Brandon Moss. So even if Fowler is a bit below-average for a center fielder on defense, it will still make the outfield defense on the whole better than it was last season.They aren’t going to be great on defense, they just need to not be really bad.neil: Final Q on the Cards: Craig wrote last season that Mike Matheny should be fired. Is he keeping this team from reaching its full potential? Or isn’t there research showing that managers don’t really matter very much?craigjedwards: I think tactically, there isn’t a whole lot of difference between good and bad managers, though I’m not sure too many people really defend Matheny’s bullpen management or in-game decisions.natesilver: And isn’t it plausible that managers matter more than they used to, given how bullpens are used these days? That’s an area where you might expect to see quite a bit of difference, especially in the NL, where you also have to account for pitchers hitting for themselves, etc.craigjedwards: Another problem with Matheny is what appears to be a disconnect with the front office. He’s had big problems playing younger players when they are given to him, to the point that trades had to be made. It would be one thing if he just made poor strategic decisions and relied on small samples to determine whether a player was hot or cold, but it is getting to the point where he also has trouble following through with the front office’s plans.This is going to be a big year for Matheny. He got a lot of credit for managing the Cardinals to the postseason, and he will get blame if they don’t make it. That’s not fair, but it doesn’t mean Matheny deserves to keep a job that was a complete gift to him in the first place.neil: Whichever team prevails between Pittsburgh and St. Louis, they and the Cubs are still far, far above the teams at the bottom of this division: the Brewers and Reds.Let’s start with Milwaukee. Over the past few years, the Brewers seem to be emulating the successful teardown/rebuild models seen recently in Chicago and Houston (and maybe Atlanta next). How’s that going for them?craigjedwards: Milwaukee is doing all the right things. They aren’t going to be able to completely mimic the Cubs — they can’t go out and sign big-name veterans like Jon Lester, Ben Zobrist, John Lackey and Jason Heyward — but they are on the right track. They got one of the top prospects in baseball (Lewis Brinson) from the Rangers in the Jonathan Lucroy trade, picked up another one (Corey Ray) from the draft, and they have a handful of pitchers with potential.neil: So what’s the next step if you’re trying that type of rebuilding effort, but without the Cubs’ resources?craigjedwards: Well, the Brewers are carrying half the payroll they had when they were contending, so they have to play younger guys with potential or trade value (Jonathan Villar, Orlando Arcia, Domingo Santana and Keon Broxton) and deal away relievers whenever they seem to have value. The fans in Milwaukee still support the team, and they will do very well if they can get a winner there. The Ryan Braun question looms, and it’s going to be hard to contend with the Cubs, Pirates and Cardinals in the same division. But they’re making progress.neil: Meanwhile, the Reds are kind of a mess. They had one of the worst pitching staffs ever last year — particularly in the bullpen.natesilver: I’ve become slightly obsessed with modern bullpens, and it’s actually sort of hard/amazing to have a bullpen as bad as Cincy’s in an era where you can take a failed No. 4 starter and turn him into a 2.50 ERA / 10.0 K/9 guy.neil: The Reds have also traded away a lot of veterans in recent years — Todd Frazier, Aroldis Chapman, Jay Bruce, etc. — yet still only have the 13th-best farm system in MLB. Should they have gotten more in return prospect-wise? Also, when will Joey Votto join that group? Can they realistically get fair value for him?natesilver: Votto is sort of the Carmelo Anthony of MLB.neil: Although I will say, the Reds have won a championship in my lifetime, unlike the Knicks.natesilver: The Reds ranked 22nd in WAR last year among players acquired through the draft, which isn’t going to cut it in a small market. So I wonder if there isn’t some longer-term work to do on scouting and development.craigjedwards: I think for a small-market team to succeed, one of the biggest factors is starting pitching because it is so hard to acquire, either in terms of cost in free agency or in trades. Having a cost-effective rotation — like we saw with Cleveland last year and the Mets the year before, or even going all the way back to Oakland’s Moneyball days — can make a big difference for a team trying to push itself into contention.natesilver: Just to bring it back to the Cubs, the thing to remember is that even if you had a team with 103-win talent — and the Cubs probably aren’t *quite* there — they’d still only have something like a 15 percent to 20 percent chance to win the World Series, given how random the playoffs can be. So if we’re thinking in terms of dynasties, there’s a question of how we’d measure one. It’s likely to be a *long* time before we see another team run off three World Series in a row, or four in five years, even if they’re the best team in baseball the whole time.neil: That’s a great point. As terrific as the Cubs are, baseball is a lot more chaotic than, say, basketball. So compared with, say, NBA teams against the Warriors, other MLB teams have a much better chance as they target the Cubs. And that also means the Pirates and Cardinals — if not the Brewers and Reds — have plenty of reasons for hope this season. RANKTEAMPECOTAFANGRAPHSDAVENPORTWESTGATEAVERAGE 3St. Louis Cardinals7884808481.4 EXPECTED NUMBER OF WINS 4Milwaukee Brewers7770737072.4 1Chicago Cubs9395959794.9 In honor of the 2017 Major League Baseball season, which starts April 2, FiveThirtyEight is assembling some of our favorite baseball writers to chat about what’s ahead. Today, we focus on the National League Central with FanGraphs writer Craig Edwards and FiveThirtyEight editor-in-chief Nate Silver. The transcript below has been edited. 2Pittsburgh Pirates8182838382.1 How forecasters view the NL Central read more

Watch a pack of SpotMini robot dogs tow a huge truck like

first_imgThe SpotMini has just upped the stakes.  Boston Dynamics Ten SpotMini robots have demonstrated their strength by hauling a truck across a parking lot. Boston Dynamics, the company behind robots like the SpotMini, Spot and Atlas, posted the video on YouTube on Tuesday. Boston Dynamics wasn’t immediately available for comment but said in the video’s description that the robots are being developed for a range of applications. Last May, the company’s president, Marc Raibert, said SpotMini robots should be ready for sale this year. The SpotMini is a four-legged robot that handles objects, climbs stairs and is capable of working in office, home and outdoor settings. The robot can carry about 31 pounds, weighs about 66 pounds and stands at just 2.6 feet. SpotMini has a battery life of about 90 minutes, depending on the task. Boston Dynamics says the SpotMini is the quietest robot it’s built.  Robots,I’m shocked — shocked! — to learn that stores are turning Labor Day into an excuse to sell stuff. Wait — no, I’m not. As much as I respect the original intent of the holiday (which became official back in 1894), to most of us, it’s just a bonus day off — one that’s blissfully tacked onto a weekend. So, yeah, stores; go ahead, run your sales. I’m listening. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Labor Day doesn’t bring out bargains to compete with the likes of Black Friday (which will be here before you know it), but there are definitely some sales worth your time.For example:We’ve rounded up the best Labor Day mattress deals.We’ve also gathered the best Labor Day laptop deals at Best Buy.The 2019 Vizio P Series Quantum is back under $999.Be sure to check out Amazon’s roughly three dozen Labor Day deals on TVs and audio. Google Express is having a big sale as well, one that includes deals on game consoles, AirPods, iPhones, laptops and more.Below I’ve rounded up a handful of individual items I consider to be the cream of the crop, followed by a handy reference guide to other Labor Day sales. Keep in mind, of course, that products may sell out at any time, even if the sale itself is still running. Note that CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured on this page. Amazon Sprint 7 Read DJI Osmo Action preview Sarah Tew/CNET Comment Read Lenovo Smart Clock review HP Laptop 15t Value: $520 (save $780) Turo is kind of like Uber meets Airbnb: You borrow someone’s car, but you do all the driving. I’ve used it many times and found it a great alternative to traditional car-rental services — in part because you get to choose exactly the vehicle you want (not just, say, “midsize”) and in part because you can often do pickup and dropoff right outside baggage claim.Between now and Sept. 1, the first 300 people to check out can get $30 off any Turo rental with promo code LDW30. $999 Preview • iPhone XS is the new $1,000 iPhone X Sarah Tew/CNET CNET may get a commission from retail offers. See It Read Google Home Hub review I thought this might be a mistake, but, no, the weirdly named HP Laptop 15t Value is indeed quite the value at this price. Specs include an Intel Core i7 processor, 12GB of RAM, a 256GB solid-state drive and a 15.6-inch display. However, I strongly recommend paying an extra $50 to upgrade that display to FHD (1,920×1,080), because you’re not likely to be happy with the native 1,366×768 resolution. 1 $60 at Best Buy Now playing: Watch this: The problem with most entry-level laptops: They come with mechanical hard drives. That makes for a mighty slow Windows experience. This Lenovo model features a 128GB solid-state drive, so it should be pretty quick to boot and load software, even with its basic processor. Plus, it has a DVD-burner! That’s not something you see in many modern laptops, especially at this price. Rylo 5.8K 360 Video Camera: $250 (save $250) DJI’s answer to GoPro’s action cameras is rugged little model that’s shockproof, dustproof and waterproof down to 11 meters. It normally runs $350, but this deal drops it to $261 when you apply promo code 19LABOR10 at checkout. Best laptops for college students: We’ve got an affordable laptop for every student. Best live TV streaming services: Ditch your cable company but keep the live channels and DVR. TVs Speakers Mobile Accessories Cameras Laptops Automobiles Smart Speakers & Displays Read the AirPods review $999 Use promo code 19LABOR10 to get an unusually good deal on JBL’s interesting hybrid product — not quite headphones, and not quite a traditional speaker, but something you wear like neckphones to listen to music on the go. Angela Lang/CNET An Echo Dot makes a fine match for any Fire edition TV, because you can use the latter to say things like, “Alexa, turn on the TV.” Right now, the 24-inch Insignia Fire TV Edition starts at just $100, while the 32-inch Toshiba Fire TV Editions is on sale for $130. Just add any Fire TV Edition to your cart, then add a third-gen Echo Dot, and presto: The latter is free. See at Turo Free Echo Dot with an Insignia or Toshiba TV (save $50) $90 at Daily Steals via Google Express Sarah Tew/CNET Share your voice Apple iPhone XS Best Buy See It $999 Though not technically a Labor Day sale, it’s happening during Labor Day sale season — and it’s too good not to share. Nationwide Distributors, via Google Express, has just about the best AirPods deal we’ve seen (when you apply promo code ZBEDWZ at checkout). This is for the second-gen AirPods with the wireless charging case. Can’t imagine these will last long at this price, so if you’re interested, act fast.center_img Formerly known as the Google Home Hub, Google’s Nest Hub packs a wealth of Google Assistant goodness into a 7-inch screen. At $59, this is within a buck of the best price we’ve seen. It lists for $129 and sells elsewhere in the $89-to-$99 range.This is one item of many available as part of eBay’s Labor Day Sale (which, at this writing, doesn’t specifically mention Labor Day, but that’s how it was pitched to us). Sarah Tew/CNET Watch this robot identify and sort recycled goods Chris Monroe/CNET Read the Rylo camera preview See at Amazon Turo Rylo The Cheapskate $299 at Amazon Apple AirPods with Wireless Charging Case: $155 (save $45) Tags $59 at eBay Share your voice 2:30 $261 at Daily Steals via Google Express Google Nest Hub: $59 (save $70) See It See it Mentioned Above Apple iPhone XS (64GB, space gray) What’s cooler: A snapshot of a firework exploding in front of you, or full 360-degree video of all the fireworks and all the reactions to seeing them? Oooh, ahhh, indeed. At $250, the compact Rylo dual-lens camera is selling for its lowest price yet. And for an extra $50, you can get the bundle that includes the waterproof housing.This deal runs through Sept. 3; it usually costs $500. Comments Tags $155 at Google Express $210 at Best Buy JBL Soundgear wearable speaker: $90 (save $160) Boost Mobile Sci-Tech Recently updated to include digital-photo-frame capabilities, the Lenovo Smart Clock brings Google Assistant goodness to your nightstand. It’s a little smaller than the Amazon Echo Show 5, but also a full $30 less (and tied with Prime Day pricing) during this Best Buy Labor Day sale. DJI Osmo Action camera: $261 (save $89) Other Labor Day sales you should check out Best Buy: In addition to some pretty solid MacBook deals that have been running for about a week already, Best Buy is offering up to 40% off major appliances like washers, dryers and stoves. There are also gift cards available with the purchase of select appliances. See it at Best BuyDell: Through Aug. 28, Dell is offering an extra 12% off various laptops, desktops and electronics. And check back starting Aug. 29 for a big batch of Labor Day doorbusters. See it at DellGlassesUSA: Aug. 29 – Sept. 3 only, you can save 65% on all frames with promo code labor65. See it at GlassesUSALenovo: The tech company is offering a large assortment of deals and doorbusters through Labor Day, with the promise of up to 56% off certain items — including, at this writing, the IdeaPad 730S laptop for $700 (save $300).See it at LenovoLensabl: Want to keep the frames you already love and paid for? Lensabl lets you mail them in for new lenses, based on your prescription. From now through Sept. 2 only, you can save 20% on the blue light-blocking lens option with promo code BLOCKBLUE. See it at LensablSears: Between now and Sept. 7, you can save up to 40% on appliances (plus an additional 10% if you shop online), up to 60% on mattresses, up to 50% on Craftsman products and more. The store is also offering some fairly hefty cashback bonuses. See it at SearsNote: This post was published previously and is continuously updated with new information.CNET’s Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page, and find more great buys on the CNET Deals page. Turo: Save $30 on any car rental Spotify and most other streaming services rely on compressed audio, which robs the listener of full fidelity. Enter Tidal, the only “major” service that delivers lossless audio — meaning at least on par with CD quality, if not better. Want to see (er, hear) the difference for yourself? Grab this excellent extended trial while you can. It’s just $6 for three months, and it’s good for up to six listeners. $999 Tidal 3-month family subscription: $5.99 (save $54) Lenovo 130-15AST 15.6-inch laptop: $210 (save $90) $520 at HP Lenovo Smart Clock: $59.99 (save $20) Review • iPhone XS review, updated: A few luxury upgrades over the XR $6 at Tidallast_img read more

Porchfest Rocks Hillcrest

first_imgBy George Kevin Jordan, Special to the AFROThe quiet neighborhood got a jolt of funk, hip-hop and rock and roll last Sunday at the 2nd annual Porchfest DC, which brought music, comradery and bar-b-que right to your doorstep. The afternoon started off with music wafting through the air. At times it had a go-go swing, at other times you could hear a tenor cutting through the air with just their notes and a beat. This was Porchfest DC. The sun bore down hard throughout the day. But a slight breeze cut the neighborhood some slack.Porchfest DC allowed for residents to head to houses in the Hillcrest neighborhood to listen live to local musicians. (Photo by George Kevin Jordan)It was easy to report on this event as I am a new-ish Hillcrest resident and didn’t have too far to travel before the sounds of sizzling vegetables outpaced the aroma of grilled meats. According to the newsletter, “The goal of the Southeast, D.C. Porchfest is not just to spotlight emerging talent, but to shine a light on the beautiful communities in Wards 7 and 8.”Hillcrest is a prime example of beauty with idyllic homes and immaculate lawns that stretch up and over hills, and valleys. But the neighborhood touted as “Washington, D.C.’s best kept secret,” may not be a secret much longer after this weekend’s festivities.According the Hillcrest Civic Association, the area is bordered by: “a line beginning at the intersection of 31st Street, SE and Pennsylvania Avenue, extending southeastward along Pennsylvania Avenue SE to the intersection of Pennsylvania Avenue, S.E. and the District of Columbia boundary line (at Southern Avenue, S.E.); extending southwestward along that District Line to the intersection of that line with Naylor Road, S.E.; extending northward along Naylor Road, SE to the intersection of Naylor Road, SE with 27th Street, S.E.; from thence in a straight line running eastward through the park to reach the upper point of 31st Street, S.E. and then following 31st Street, S.E. northward to the original intersection of 31st Street S.E. and Pennsylvania Avenue, S.E. said boundary to include both sides of 31st Street, SE including Randle Highlands Elementary School.”The population of the neighborhood is about 4,700, according to Niche.com, and boasts a population that is 89% Black, and a diverse age demographic that is split between millenials, gen-xers and baby boomers  according to data from the site. A good sized group of those people all sat together in their neighbor’s lawns for Porchfest. People brought their lawn chairs, bikes, food and flowing dresses, and listened to jazz as children tried to learn to skateboard down streets. Porchfest DC was what it would look like if Erykah Badu and Lena Horne had a block party. It was both laid back and elegant. Both “woke” and “non-pressed.” Both “sophisticated” and super casual.”Artists from across the District performed intimate sets with nothing but light and mosquitos between them. There was a market with candles that eased tensions and smelled of herbs and were good for the environment, along with fun snarky tee-shirts and lots of lemonade and fruity drinks. The object of Porchfest is to stroll from house to house taking in the performances at each residence. But once you set foot in one backyard it was hard to leave. One wanted to just lean back in the chair and take a nap serenaded by a jazz artist. Slated performers included DJ Goldy Smokes, TY Jones, Deuce Ducartier, Future Band, Cassonovela, Femi, Black Out Band, Original Jesus Gang, Sweet Something and Bliss Ananda to name a few. There was also yoga, a kids party and events for all ages. The event was scheduled from noon to 6 p.m. but music thumped through the air well past dark. The festival originated in Ithaca, NY, by Gretchen Hildreth and Lesley Greene, according to the site. But fever for the fest has spread throughout the country. In DC the Porchfest has landed in District neighborhoods like Adams Morgan and Rhode Island Avenue. Want to know where Porchfest DC will go next? Take the survey at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/DGCMHD2last_img read more

Entanglement without Classical Correlations

first_img Experiment reverses the direction of heat flow Citation: Entanglement without Classical Correlations (2008, August 27) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2008-08-entanglement-classical.html Quantum mechanics is full of counterintuitive concepts. The idea of entanglement – when two or more particles instantaneously exhibit dependent characteristics when measured, no matter how far apart they are – is one of them. Now, physicists have discovered another counterintuitive result that deals with the line between the quantum and classical worlds. Explore further Normally, when two or more particles are entangled (and seem to communicate with each other instantaneously), they not only share quantum correlations, but also classical correlations. Although physicists don’t have an exact definition for classical correlations, the term generally refers to local correlations, where information does not have to travel faster than the speed of light. So if entangled particles demonstrate correlations across large distances, you might assume that they will also have correlations across shorter distances. After all, if entangled particles can communicate at faster-than-light speeds, they should be able to communicate at slower-than-light speeds.But a team of physicists from the National University of Singapore, Mediterranean Technology Park in Barcelona, the University of Leeds, and the University of Bristol has demonstrated something different. They’ve theoretically shown that any odd number (greater than one) of entangled particles can exist without classical correlations. They explain this paradox in a recent issue of Physical Review Letters.“One way of seeing this is as follows,” Vlatko Vedral, Professor of Quantum Information Science at the University of Leeds, told PhysOrg.com. “Entanglement means being correlated as far as many different measurements are concerned. Classical correlations mean being correlated as far as one particular measurement is concerned. That is why researchers usually think that when there is entanglement, there are also classical correlations. However, our paper shows that you have to be careful about making this inference.”As Vedral explained, generally when physicists measure entanglement, their measurements destroy the quantum correlations first, and then the classical correlations. “Entanglement represents excess of correlations, over and above classical ones. In other words, whatever cannot be accounted for locally is due to quantum entanglement. When you make local measurements on entangled particles, then you will invariably be destroying their correlations (both classical and quantum). Since quantum is in excess of classical, it is possible that you can first get rid of entanglement, but are still left with some classical correlations.” But to do the opposite of this – to get rid of the classical correlations and have only quantum correlations – is more difficult to comprehend.“Imagine that I tell you that I am a billionaire,” Vedral said as an example. “You would then infer that I certainly have 100 million somewhere in my assets. You would be very surprised, indeed, if I told you that this was not true and that I am actually not also a millionaire. You can’t have more, without have less as well (by definition).”This is not the first time that physicists have demonstrated entanglement without classical correlations. In 2006, Toth and Acin found an example of a three-qubit system that also shows this phenomenon. This three-qubit example has already been observed in the laboratory, and the physicists hope that their new example with any odd number of qubits can also be observed. They also expect that even numbers of qubits should exhibit the same effect, but do not yet have an example.“The key is that we are using one particular definition of classical correlations, which is in fact the main one used in the solid state physics (and is used to mark phase transitions among other things),” Vedral said. “This is based on average values of a set of observables and the key is that this set is not complete. However, when it comes to two particles (and two point correlations is what all solid state experiments are about) then you cannot have the situation that we found with three and more particles. Namely, if classical correlations vanish for two qubits, then so do the quantum ones.”The paradox that quantum correlations can exist without accompanying classical correlations could have some thought-provoking consequences. For instance, physicists often use a test of Bell inequalities to determine if local realism has been violated and that quantum correlations have occurred. But since Bell inequalities are based on classical correlations, the test doesn’t work for this example. This leads to the need for a new way to detect quantum correlations, based on different concepts.The study may also affect how physicists view the boundary between the classical and quantum worlds – a question at the foundation of physics. With this demonstration of the existence of a state that has quantum correlations without classical correlations, the physicists suggest that local realism might be used as the criteria to characterize the classical world.The result could also have practical applications – for instance, as a possible method for detecting phase transitions. Using quantum correlations only (instead of both quantum and classical) for detecting phase transitions could provide a more universal measurement than conventional methods.More information: Kaszlikowski, Dagomir; Sen(De), Aditi; Sen, Ujjwal; Vedral, Vlatko; and Winter, Andreas. “Quantum Correlations without Classical Correlations. Physical Review Letters 101, 070502 (2008).Copyright 2008 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more