Category Archives: Innovation

Microchip your employees —why not? (United States)

Received from Rob Hamlin
Fri, 4 Aug 2017 at 9:27 am

Ugh!! …if it doesn’t scare you it should do.

### ODT Online Thu, 3 Aug 2017
US company microchips workers
A Wisconsin vending machine company is offering its employees a chance to have a microchip implanted in their hands that they could use to buy snacks, log in to computers or use the copy machine. About 50 employees at Three Square Market have agreed to the optional implant of the chips, which are the approximate size and shape of a grain of rice, said Tony Danna, vice president of international sales at the River Falls-based company. The company, which employs 85, said it was the first in the United States to offer staff the technology which is similar to that used by contactless credit cards and chips used to identify pets. The implants made by Sweden’s BioHax International are part of a long-term test aimed to see if the radio-frequency identification chips could have broader commercial applications, Danna said.
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Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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Emirates Team New Zealand must WIN #AmericasCup2017

[via catsailingnews.com – click to enlarge]

At Facebook:

35th America’s Cup match
Race 7: Emirates Team New Zealand beat Oracle Team USA by 12 secs
Race 8: Emirates Team New Zealand beat Oracle Team USA
Team New Zealand lead the first-to-seven series 6-1

At Twitter:

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered inthe public interest.

*Image: 24/06/2017 – Bermuda (BDA) – 35th America’s Cup 2017 – 35th America’s Cup Match Presented by Louis Vuitton – © ACEA 2017 / Photo Sander van der Borch

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Recycle your Soft Plastic bags #Dunedin

[stuff.co.nz]

“The objective is for 70% of New Zealanders to have access to a drop-off facility for soft plastics within 20km of their home.” –Scott Simpson

### ODT Online Fri, 23 Jun 2017
Recycling for plastic packaging arrives
By John Lewis
All those plastic bags floating around after shopping expeditions can now be recycled under a joint initiative between the retail sector, the packaging industry and the Government. The Love New Zealand Soft Plastics Recycling programme was launched in Dunedin yesterday, and will enable soft plastics and soft packaging such as shopping bags, bread bags, frozen food bags and food wrap to be recycled at the 14 New World, Countdown, FreshChoice, Pak’n Save and The Warehouse stores in Dunedin and Mosgiel. Associate Environment Minister Scott Simpson said the programme was already running in Auckland, Hamilton, Wellington and Canterbury. […] The $700,000 contribution from the Government’s waste minimisation fund was being matched by contributions from retailers and some suppliers, bringing the total project funding  to more than $1.6million. […] Cargill Enterprises would collect the recycled plastics from the shops. 
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Last year I convivially swapped emails with the manager of Centre City New World enquiring about how soon the store would adopt the national soft plastics recycling programme. He kindly immediately contacted FoodStuffs to find out ….well the day has come! Happy customer!

Try this simple test to help identify recyclable plastic material…
“The test is if you can pull it and stays stringy in consistency, it’s fine. But if you can tear it cleanly it is not recyclable.” Stuff

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Soft Plastics Recycling 
The Love NZ Soft Plastics Programme is about informing New Zealanders about how to keep plastic bags and packaging out of landfill. Collect all the soft plastics which you use at home, make sure the bags are empty and dry and drop them into the Love NZ Soft Plastics Recycling bins at participating stores.

The project is supported by major brands including Asaleo Care, Ceres Organics, Coca Cola Amatil, Cottonsoft, Fonterra, Frucor, George Weston Foods, Goodman Fielder, Griffins, Hubbards, Kathmandu, Kelloggs, Kimberly-Clark, Lululemon, Mars, Mother Earth, Mondelez (Cadbury), Nestle, New Zealand Post, Pams, Pure Delish, Simplot (Birds Eye), Spicers, SunRice and Wrigleys; Amcor Flexibles, Astron, Coveris, Snell Packaging & Safety with many others committed to joining the programme. Soft plastic bags are not currently collected for recycling by councils because they can contaminate the recycling process. New Zealanders use over 1.6 billion plastic bags in the home every year. The project takes all soft plastic bags including bread bags, frozen food bags, toilet paper packaging, confectionery and biscuit wrap, chip bags, pasta and rice bags, courier envelopes, shopping bags, sanitary hygiene packaging – basically anything made of plastic which can be scrunched into a ball. Customers can bring their used soft plastics back to store and put them in the recycling bin.

█ Website: http://www.recycling.kiwi.nz/soft-plastics

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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Cadbury Site: Continue with Manufacturing and a Themed Hotel

### ODT Online Wed, 7 Jun 2017
$20m plan to save factory
By Eileen Goodwin
A bid to save the Cadbury factory in Dunedin is being unveiled today. Jim O’Malley, a Dunedin city councillor, is trying to raise $20 million to keep the factory open on a portion of the site. Mr O’Malley is working in a personal capacity; the Dunedin City Council is not involved in the bid. Mr O’Malley’s plan is to run a public share offer aimed at the general public as well as business. Before launching any share offer, Mr O’Malley has organised a two-week pledge period to gauge interest, starting today. […] Shares in Dunedin Manufacturing Holdings (DMH) would be priced at $50 if the offer goes ahead. A website has been launched – www.ownthefactory.co.nz – to register pledges. […] The plant would make the full range of New Zealand favourites, such as Jaffas and Pineapple Lumps, under licence for Mondelez International. […] Mr O’Malley’s plan differs from that of other parties because it involves acquiring part of the site and the equipment, rather than just agreeing to produce the goods.
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### ODT Online Wed, 7 Jun 2017
Themed hotel still possible: Lund
By Chris Morris
A chocolate-themed hotel could still be built at Dunedin’s Cadbury factory site, even if its backers have to share the space, a Dunedin businessman and city councillor says. The comment came yesterday from Russell Lund, one of those pushing the hotel concept, before news broke yesterday of Cr Jim O’Malley’s bid to save the factory operation, condensed on to a smaller part of the site. […] Mr Lund said the idea of sharing the site was “interesting” and not one that would necessarily kill the hotel concept. The Cadbury factory was on a “massive” site, meaning there was potentially room for a mixture of uses, including a hotel on upper floors alongside a dairy processing plant on the ground floor, he said. But before options could be considered, more detail was needed from Mondelez, he said. […] He expected to hear from Mondelez by the end of next month, but in the meantime, he would discuss the hotel concept with a group of Chinese investors due to visit Dunedin later this month.
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[click to enlarge]
280 Cumberland St, Dunedin 9016 via Google Earth

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When it comes to hotel design, Dunedin can learn from Hobart, writes businessman Russell Lund.

### ODT Online Mon, 8 May 2017
Hotel design: back to the future is where it’s at
By Russell Lund
OPINION The proposed Filleul St, Dunedin, hotel is a remnant of outmoded thinking. Nothing ever remains the same, and the winds of change are sweeping through the accommodation industry. I recently spent time in Hobart to see how it had been able to develop many of its waterfront heritage buildings into viable economic propositions, and received some valuable insights. Hobart now has a population in excess of 200,000, but it was and still is a regional city in economic decline, isolated from Australia’s major centres. Like Dunedin, it has the lowest average household income of any major Australian city, and sees a bright future in tourism based on its built heritage, natural environment and outstanding regional food and wine products. The accompanying photographs show the two hotels rated by TripAdvisor as the best and second best (of 46) hotels in Hobart. The Hotel Grand Chancellor Hobart is a rectilinear 4.5-star human filing cabinet that is described on TripAdvisor as an architectural scar on the Hobart cityscape. Its level of discernible architectural merit is of a similar standard to the proposed Filleul St hotel which is to say, none at all. Despite its brutal urban demeanor, The Hotel Grand Chancellor is a busy hotel. Its 244 rooms run at an impressive 93% occupancy, but you can hire a room there at any time for less than $A200 ($NZ215). However, the modest Henry Jones Art Hotel nearby, with 52 5-star rooms, a former jam factory, knocks the Grand Chancellor for a revenue six. It also runs at 90%. occupancy, but its average tariff is about double the Grand Chancellor’s, at $A350-$A500 per night. The Henry Jones is able to charge this premium because the property is unique, even in a city renowned for its building heritage.
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### ODT Online Wed, 17 May 2017
Cadbury expands Hobart factory
Mondelez International is investing $A4 million in Hobart’s Cadbury chocolate factory while pushing ahead with plans to close its Dunedin production line. The food giant announced today the money would buy new equipment to produce two new lines at the Claremont plant, while the southern New Zealand site is due to close in 2018.
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█ For more, enter the term *cadbury* in the search box at right.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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#OldHat Dunedin bus system hard to use and unaffordable

Lynley Hood is a positive advocate for her area, no doubt – but hopefully she can think more widely than Corstorphine, to the provision of fair and equitable public transport for The Many, wherever they live in Dunedin, who struggle to pay standard fares or top up the ‘dumb’ Go Card —or who have no bus service to their streets at decent intervals with timely transfer options for necessary travel destinations [the currently ‘immovable’ ORC system].

Or thank god, there’s hail apps.

[Is Otago Regional Council up with the technology about to change public transport @ New Zealand —thereby cancelling any profit from the ill-thought diesel-breathing bus hub planned for Great King St in Central Dunedin.]

Black car service [uberinternal.com]

When a new flexible bus ticketing system is introduced early next year in Dunedin and the Queenstown area, consideration would be given to introducing a lower $5 top-up for Go Cards for online payments. –ORC

### ODT Online Tue, 6 Jun 2017
Bus discounts asked of ORC
By John Gibb
Kew resident Lynley Hood is urging the Otago Regional Council to introduce a community services card bus discount to help “transport disadvantaged” people in Dunedin. “Public transport is important for all sorts of reasons, certainly for inclusiveness and giving everybody a chance,” Dr Hood said. If you’re going to proceed with education and get a job, you’ve got to have transport. It’s got to be attractive to everybody, so it works for the people who need it.” She often saw bus users checking their small change to see if they could afford to use the bus, and clearly not everyone could. She has been suggesting this extension of the bus discount system, and other improvements in the Corstorphine bus service, for several years, and made a detailed submission to the council in 2014. More Corstorphine residents would be encouraged to switch to Go Cards by providing the suggested discount for community services card holders, and cutting the minimum Go Card top-up payment from $10 to $5, she said.
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Radiohead Published on Jun 2, 2017
Radiohead – I Promise
I Promise is one of 3 previously unreleased tracks from the album OK Computer OKNOTOK 1997 – 2017.

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“Transportation companies compete for customers, and ultimately it is the consumer who makes the choice.” –Chicago’s Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection

“Were the old deemed to have a constitutional right to preclude the entry of the new into the markets of the old, economic progress might grind to a halt,” Judge Richard Posner wrote in the 7th Circuit decision. “Instead of taxis we might have horse and buggies; instead of the telephone, the telegraph; instead of computers, slide rules.”

### usatoday.com 4:47 p.m. ET 5 Jun 2017 | Updated
Chicago cabbies say industry is teetering toward collapse
By Aamer Madhani
CHICAGO — Operators of the nation’s second-biggest taxi fleet are now accelerating toward their long-rumoured extinction, edging towards becoming virtual dinosaurs in the era of ride-sharing monsters Uber and Lyft. Cabbies have long grumbled that the sky is falling as they lose ground to ride-sharing companies. Now, cabbies in Chicago are pointing to new data that suggests the decline could be speeding up. About 42% of Chicago’s taxi fleet was not operating in the month of March, and cabbies have seen their revenue slide for their long-beleaguered industry by nearly 40% over the last three years as riders are increasingly ditching cabs for ride-hailing apps Uber, Lyft and Via, according to a study released Monday by the Chicago cab drivers union. More than 2,900 of Chicago’s nearly 7,000 licensed taxis were inactive in March 2017 — meaning they had not picked up a fare in a month, according to the Cab Drivers United/AFSCME Local 2500 report. The average monthly income per active medallion — the permit that gives cabbies the exclusive right to pick up passengers who hail them on the street — has dipped from $5,276 in January 2014 to $3,206 this year. The number of riders in Chicago hailing cabs has also plummeted during that same period from 2.3 million monthly riders to about 1.1 million. Declining ridership for Chicago’s taxi industry comes as foreclosures are piling up for taxi medallion owners who aren’t generating enough fares to keep up with their loan payments and meet their expenses.
….Chicago cabbies aren’t alone in feeling the pinch. In New York, ridership in the city’s iconic yellow cabs has fallen about 30% over the last three years. Last year, San Francisco’s Yellow Cab — the city’s largest taxi company — filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Los Angeles taxi ridership fell 43%, and revenue was down 24%, between 2013 and 2016.
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Medallion Report (FINAL)

[watch video] Fox 32 : Chicago taxi drivers: Industry is teetering toward collapse
Posted: Jun 05 2017 09:50PM CDT | Updated

New York, the new normal….

Motherboard Published on May 27, 2016
Is Uber Killing the Yellow Taxi in New York City?
As Uber’s stranglehold over the taxi industry increases, some New York yellow cab dispatchers have found themselves in an unprecedented predicament: sitting on millions of dollars worth of medallion yellow cabs, but not enough drivers to drive them.

█ Wikipedia: Taxicab regulation

Related Post and Cimments
8.12.16 Our loss-making public bus system, as for the colours *spew
20.11.16 Dunedin Buses – Route planners don’t consider effects on local business
11.8.16 Tesla Motors to open new location every four days #electrictravel
21.3.16 Uber travel

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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@whatifdunedin tracks the International Space Station #ISS

Ignazio Magnani (@IgnazioMagnani), residing in Reggio Emilia, Italy, keeps his followers posted about the visibilty of the International Space Station and the composition of the crew aboard the spacecraft in orbit. His Twitter ID is a painting of Russian pioneer of space flight Yuri Gagarin, the first man to have done (12 April 1961) a space flight. Ignazio’s Twitter profile is a tribute to space exploration and the research to improve our quality of life.

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Dunedin-based astronomer and dark skies proponent Ian Griffin (@iangriffin) keeps an eagle eye out for happenings overhead, often with superb and astonishing camera results. To obtain these shots of the overhead pass Ian used a 9.25inch Celestron with a Sony A7S2 camera.

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Intl. Space Station (@Space_Station) is NASA’s page for updates from the International Space Station, the world-class lab orbiting Earth 250 miles above. For the latest research, follow @ISS_Research.

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In other news….

Inmarsat-5 F4 Mission
SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket will deliver Inmarsat-5 F4, a commercial communications satellite, to a Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO). As the industry leader and pioneer of mobile satellite communications, Inmarsat has been powering global connectivity for more than three decades. SpaceX is targeting launch of Inmarsat-5 F4 from historic Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The 49-minute launch window opens on Monday, May 15, at 7:21 p.m. EDT, or 23:21 UTC. A backup launch window opens on Tuesday, May 16, at 7:21 p.m. EDT, or 23:21 UTC.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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Goodbye Stewart Harvey, you good thing!

To my dear colleague and bold accomplice in Heritage

At Facebook:

### ODT Online Wed, 10 May 2017
Dunedin heritage advocate dies
Dunedin man Stewart Harvey, an advocate for preserving the city’s heritage, has died. He was 77. Mr Harvey was a founding trustee and chairman of the Historic Cemeteries Conservation Trust of New Zealand, played a leadership role in the Dunedin Prison Charitable Trust and was an Orokonui Ecosanctuary Foundation trustee and honorary treasurer. In 2006, he initiated the first phase of restoring Larnach’s tomb in Dunedin’s Northern Cemetery, securing funding of $130,000. In 2012, he was awarded a New Zealand Historic Places Trust certificate of merit award and in 2013 received a QSM for services to heritage preservation. An obituary will follow. [ends]

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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