If you’re looking for something a little flatter, you can run some laps on the Champs-Élysées. Ride by the Eiffel Tower, Place de la Condorde, the Grand Palais, and of course the Arc de Triomphe. Just two routes are available here, but if you’ve ever wanted to ride the finishing sprint at the TdF, here’s your (virtual) chance.Routes on the Paris MapChamps-Elysees (6.6km, 39m): the most famous finishing sprint in cycling.Lutece Express (6.6km, 39m): rewind history as you travel the roads of Paris.Both maps are currently available to ride, and they’ll continue to be available all week. After that, they’ll be shuffled into the regular rotation on the guest world schedule.zwift.com Recently, Zwift held the first virtual Tour de France and l’Etape du Tour de France. Maybe you even watched some of the virtual racing or took part in the group rides. But I’m guessing I speak for many Zwift riders when I say that what I was really excited about, was the addition of new maps.While the Virtual TdF and l’Etape du Tdf started on the existing world of Watopia, eventually the included the new maps of France and Paris. Until now, those worlds were limited to the race and the l’Etape, but now they’re finally open to all users.The France map centers around a town that was supposedly inspired by La Rochelle in the southwest of France. It includes a number of iconic landmarks like Mont Saint-Michel, fields of sunflowers, and the Carnac Stones.This map is also home to the Zwift-ified version of the legendary Mont Ventoux. Called Mont Ven-Top here, the segment is 19km long with 1,480m of elevation making it the longest climb in Zwift. As one of seven different route options for the map, you can start right at the base of Mont Ven-Top, for the 12.9mi route with 5049ft of climbing.Routes on the France MapCasse-Pattes (22.9km, 155m): roll through the flatlands before ascending the switchbacks up to the hilly KOM. After a fast and furious descent, hit the Marina for a mad-dash finish.Douce France (24km, 133m): roll past stunning chalets, seasides, and sunflowers. The sights and sounds of France are all around you. It’s a sweet route, but there is some sting in it too.La Reine (event-only, 22.8km, 1,181m): enjoy the river road, Balloon Field, and Petit KOM before climbing Mont Ven-Top up to Chalet Reynard.Petit Boucle (60.8km, 483m): This little loop takes in all the roads of the valley in both directions.R.G.V. (24km, 133m): a high-speed sprinter’s course that traverses the flatter roads of the French countryside.Roule Ma Poule (22.9km, 155m): get ready to roll on this undulating course. Take the direct route up to the hilly KOM, descend the switchbacks, and then traverse the flatter countryside.Tire-Bouchon (60.8km, 483m): this route heads straight up to the hilly KOM before corkscrewing its way around the valley. After a lap of this, you might need a glass of wine…or two.Ven-Top (20.8km, 1,539m): the shortest route to the legendary summit
Wayne mentioned he’s put thousands of miles on the parts, and it looks like there’s a bit of wear on the hoods. Shaping looks quite ergonomic, and if that finger groove means one-finger braking while riding on the hoods, that would be pretty sweet. Note the Flight Deck logo on the top of the brake lever.The hoods themselves look very similar to the current generation. Levers look to have a bit more outward flare.Shimano’s road brake calipers (and mountain, for that matter) are highly regarded. These look to have an articulating linkage, although configured differently than SRAM’s new Red brakes. If the cable looks frayed here it’s because it’s been in service for many, many miles.Best we can tell, the small linkage arm is connected via a pivot to the brake arm controlling the pad on the cable entry side. As it pulls the other arm (with logo in this image), that arm raises and pushes (rolls?) a cam that closes the other arm with more force. On the front brake, you can see a set screw that looks like it would let you adjust the force generated by the linkage.Speaking of leverage , the cable mounting point on the front derailleur looks like it’ll have a ton of torque over the cage, which should translate to easy shifting. It could mean a lot of cable pull, though.Other than styling, the only major functional change we can see is that the cable bolt moves forward all the way to the front pivots for the parallelogram. Again, we’re guessing this simply gives more leverage over the spring to make shifting easier. This is one of the few pieces here that’s less aggressive looking than the 7900 piece.What do you think? Loving the looks? See anything we missed? While pedaling along with the Ride 2 Recovery Memorial Challenge ride, Shimano brake engineer Wayne Stetina paid a visit to Jason at Freshbikes and let him snap us a few pics of what’s likely to be the forthcoming 2013 Dura-Ace component group.All parts are accounted for save a rumored Flight Deck revamp, and thanks to some printing on the chainrings, it looks like all the 11-speed hearsay should be correct. The official unveil is this Friday, June 1, at which time we’ll be able to present all of the technical info, specs and more…and there’s a lot more. Until then, all we can do is speculate based on these images. And Shimano would like us to point out that anything you’re seeing before the production units hit the floor are prototypes are no guarantee of what’s actually coming. That said, this is the second time we’ve seen four-armed cranks. These appear asymmetric, with two of the opposing arms looking a bit wider than the others. We’re guessing this is all about pedal force distribution where it counts.
Vermont Business Magazine A Vermont farm and its champion cow is celebrating taking the top prize at the World Dairy Expo. “Blexy,” a classic black-and-white Holstein, was selected as the top bovine of all the dairy breeds at the World Dairy Expo in Madison, Wisconsin. With more than 2,300 entries, the dairy show is considered the Kentucky Derby of the cow world.The seven-year-old animal is co-owned by Borderview Genetics in Richford, Vermont. Co-owners Tim and Sharyn Abbott focus on breeding cows that will reach the top of their class. “We knew Blexy was special. Now we know that the judges think so too,” said Tim Abbott, who has nurtured their cow along her path to the pinnacle of the cow business.“We thank all our friends and family who have helped us reach this goal. It is a dream come true. We could not have done this without the help of so many special people,” noted Sharyn Abbott.In addition, the top cow award will help Borderview Genetics grow its business. Blexy will have more calves, and her strong pedigree will allow the Abbotts to market more of their herd for sale across the United States, Canada, Mexico and other parts of the world.Tim and Sharyn have deep roots in farming. Tim grew up on a farm in Cabot, Vermont. Sharyn was raised on a farm in Enosburgh. The couple met at the University of Vermont where they were active in the Animal Science Department.“Vermont is known for its quality milk, butter and cheese. Most of all, we recognize Vermont farmers. Sharyn and Tim are proof Vermont is at the head of the class when it comes to dairy.” said Vermont Agriculture Secretary, Anson Tebbetts.Blexy is currently enjoying some rest and relaxation in Wisconsin before she travels to her next stop, the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair held in November in Toronto, Canada.Source: Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets agriculture.vermont.gov 10.17.2017(link is external)
Just about everywhere you look these days, headlines and studies highlight how advanced technology is changing the way that consumers interact with their financial institution. And while the use of online and digital banking services is steadily increasing, personal interaction at the branch level continues to be a valuable component of excellent member service delivery. According to recent studies, some consumers still prefer to purchase banking products in-person versus online, and rely on branch offices for getting answers to questions and resolving issues related to their accounts.But as competition for member transactions increases, credit unions are faced with the challenge of whether to maintain robust brick and mortar facilities that provide valuable and in-demand services to meet member needs or to install smart kiosks in certain underserved market areas, or both. Determining whether or not you have the right strategy in place can be time-consuming, but it is essential for the long-term stability of your credit union.Evaluating branch profitability and effectivenessConsidering that the most common alternative to visiting a branch facility is conducting business on a computer or smartphone, it is essential to determine how to make sure your branch is a valuable resource in your market or service area. There are several factors to consider, including: Do you have the right number of branches in the right locations to serve your members?Should you build a new branch or put in smart kiosks in underserved areas?Do your delivery methods fit your member demographics?Are your staff members the right fit for your branch – adequately trained to sell and cross-sell products and services, and to provide support to your members?A diagnostic review of your existing branch(es) can provide a data-driven evaluation of your business volume, traffic patterns and the type of transactions handled on a daily basis. The results, along with an analysis of net operating costs of your overall institution, will determine the profitability of your existing structure, as well as what changes might be the most beneficial to maintaining a successful, competitive organization.Do you have the right staff and technology?The effectiveness of branch personnel in providing solutions to member questions and problems can have a tremendous impact on maintaining long-term member relationships. Do your members have access to universal tellers who can help facilitate all of their needs – from opening a new account to discussing a loan or resolving an error on a transaction? Or is your lobby set up in silos where members must wait for different employees to handle their business concerns separately? On a typical day is there a line in the drive-through or at the ATM while the lobby is empty? As consumers continue to incorporate technology into every aspect of their lives, it is imperative for credit unions to provide access to their services 24/7 with mobile and digital devices, as well as through integrated services, such as intelligent ATM machines.Incorporating intelligent ATMs can be an incremental step in transforming your credit union to offer some of the high-tech conveniences your members find valuable. By providing access to interactive ATMs in your lobby, members have the option of completing nearly any transaction without going through a teller line or interacting with branch personnel. Interactive ATMs – some enhanced with video technology – can provide a variety of teller services at the branch or remote locations, giving your members expanded access to personal financial services, at their convenience.Plus, integrating such self-service technology into your service delivery options can enable your credit union to:expand your footprint without the expense of additional facilities;reduce teller transaction costs and improve productivity;improve staff scheduling and teller management;increase sales opportunities; andimprove service quality and member satisfaction.According to a 2013 study by FMSI Teller Line, the average number of lobby transactions per branch has fallen 45 percent since 1992, because financial institutions have done such a good job of pushing consumers out the door with such options as ATMs, ACH, digital banking and remote deposit capture opportunities. In addition to creating unproductive staff time, this has resulted in a 124 percent increase in branch labor cost per transaction. Are resources needed to improve member service quality?A staffing study can help to determine if you have the right people with the right expertise in the right jobs. Additional tools, such as on-site visits and secret shops can uncover any areas where service can be improved or where additional training can lead to a more member-focused environment. Information gathered during these unbiased observations can also determine what resources might be required to make necessary changes, how much this will cost and how these changes will affect staffing before any plans for either adding staff or potential downsizing are put into place.Creating a formula for successConsumers have more options for conducting their financial transactions than ever before. Capturing their business for the long-term requires providing a convenient facility that combines the right amount of technology with motivated, highly skilled staff that can provide the added personal support that sets your credit union apart from the competition. If coming into your branch provides a positive experience where your members’ needs are met, they are more likely to be satisfied with the products and services offered, and more inclined to continue their relationship with your institution.About JMFAJMFA is a leading provider of profitability and performance-improvement consulting. For more than 35 years, JMFA has been recognized as one of the most trusted names in the industry for earnings enhancement and expense control programs, training and development, recruitment services, as well as product, service, pricing and technology-improvement consulting. Simply stated, JMFA’s programs and services are designed to increase income or reduce expenses. JMFA is proud to be a preferred provider among many industry groups. To learn more about JMFA, please visit www.JMFA.com or call (800) 809-2307. 7SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Ron Jennings Ron is responsible for managing JMFA’s business strategies, including alliances and partner relationship development in support of national sales efforts. His extensive industry knowledge and experience in performance enhancement … Web: www.jmfa.com Details
by. Mike LawsonHow many times have you fumbled for cash, cards, or even your phone when it comes to paying for something? If you’re like me, almost everyday. As many of you have seen already, there are a smattering of wearable technologies out there allowing consumers to make payments at retail outlets. Just the other day, I saw a guy paying for his frothy Starbucks beverage with his Samsung Gear watch. That’s kinda cool, I thought — and extremely convenient. (Look for Apple to have something quite similar in a couple weeks.)Not to be outdone, the folks at The Members Group (with a little help from their partner and payments app developer Dwolla) have joined the mix with their Google Glass payments app: See2Pay. Even though this technology is still a little ways away from mass consumer adoption, it won’t be long until you’ll be seeing folks swiping their glasses or scanning their watches when paying for stuff at any retail outlet.To get the inside scoop on See2Pay and other wearable payment apps, we invited TMG’s Ryan Anderson on the show for a quick demo. We also discussed why they created this app now, how it will benefit your credit union and members, and when he thinks this type of tech will really catch on with consumers.Many thanks to Ryan for being on the show clad in his Google Glass. Enjoy the show!Visit:themembersgroup.com continue reading » 4SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr
Many medical associations and thousands of mental-health professionals have criticized the Trump administration’s policy of dividing immigrant families at the southern border, including the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Psychological Association. In many cases, professionals cite the negative health effects parental separation has on children.In response to the backlash over his immigration policy, President Donald Trump called on Congress Tuesday to give his administration the power to detain and deport migrant families as a unit, saying he considered that the “only solution to the border crisis.”Between May 5 and June 9, more than 2,300 children were separated from about 2,200 adults who were detained, administration officials said Tuesday. Medical professionals explain the effects of such separation.—Yes, in the first three years of life, children undergo a rapid period of brain development. Constantly changing caregivers could impair the development of a child’s executive functions, such as the ability to regulate behavior and pay attention, said Megan Gunnar, director of the University of Minnesota’s Institute of Child Development. Read the whole story: The Wall Street Journal More of our Members in the Media >
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Located 8 km off the coast of Changhua county at a water depth ranging from 18 to 28 m, the offshore phase of the project will start in March 2020 with completion planned for early June 2020.Koos-Jan van Brouwershaven, ceo of Heerema Marine Contractors, said: “This is our first contract in Taiwan, thus another major milestone. This Changhua project re-emphasises Heerema’s commitment to operate in wind projects all over the world and strengthens our position in the Asian offshore wind market.”Construction of the Changhua Windfarm Phase 1 project is being led by a consortium of Jan de Nul and Hitachi on behalf of Taiwan Power Company (TPC).hmc.heerema.com
Credit: Matchbox Films16-year-old Nathan (Bérenger Anceaux) lives with his father Stéphane (Patrick Timsit) and has just started attending a new school. At a party, he kisses classmate Louis (Jules Houplain) unaware that the moment has been caught on camera. The next day the photo starts spreading on Facebook but there’s only Nathan’s face that’s clearly visible in it so he gets targeted by bullies. Determined to protect Louis’ identity, Nathan’s life is turned upside down as he finds himself dealing with the fallout of the photo on his own.Hidden Kisses is from director Didier Bivel and writer Jérôme Larcher. A coming-of-age drama, the film explores what it’s like for Nathan to be forced to come out to his friends and family once the photo circulates but it goes a lot deeper than that. What writer Larcher has done so well here is create a series of well-rounded characters, who are affected by the kiss between Nathan and Louis. While this is undoubtedly Nathan’s story, there’s a lot more layers to the film making it a welcome breath of fresh air.Credit: Matchbox FilmsNathan seems undaunted by his sexuality but the sudden reveal to his father Stéphane creates distance between the two, with Stéphane not knowing how to deal with the news as he works as a police officer and tries his best to be a single parent. As Nathan appeals to Louis, who ignores him, we soon learn that Louis’ home-life isn’t a bed of roses and his behaviour is explained by exploring the relationship he has with his aggressive and pushy father. To avoid anyone thinking it’s him in the photo, Louis carries out a very public violent act against Nathan in a bid to hide his own insecurities and struggle to deal with his burgeoning feelings for the same sex.A nice touch is that we get to see how the teachers in the school react to the bullying and homophobia from the students towards Nathan. One teacher tries to educate his class about choosing their words carefully and thinking before they speak, and he’s hauled into the principal’s office to be warned about promoting homosexuality. Another teacher knows Nathan’s struggle all too well but she’s reluctant to reveal her own sexuality to help him, scarred by her own experiences as a teenager.Bérenger Anceaux is fantastic as Nathan. He carries much of the film and he portrays Nathan as someone with determination as he faces horrendous abuse at the hands of his classmates. He never gives up hope that Louis will come clean, all the while clinging onto the idea that he’s in love with him. Jules Houplain is very good too and he really gets to flex his acting chops in the film’s second half when the story focuses more on his character Louis. The two actors together are superb and they have an easy chemistry that translates well on screen.Credit: Matchbox FilmsSpecial mention should also go to Patrick Timsit as Stéphane. He convinces as a single parent going through a rollercoaster of emotions while trying his best to be there for his son. It’s a difficult role to get right but he does so impressively. One particular scene where Stéphane finds Nathan crying and nursing wounds from being beaten up is heart-wrenching and very moving.Hidden Kisses is the kind of film I wish I’d had available to me when I was younger. It paints a realistic portrayal of what some gay teens go through and the bullying they are subjected to. The film is relatable and I like the fact that it didn’t wrap up everything in a neat bow by the end. Coming to terms with your sexuality is one thing but everyone else dealing with it in their own way, is something else entirely.Cast: Bérenger Anceaux, Jules Houplain, Patrick Timsit, Bruno Putzulu, Lisa Kramarz, Barbara Schulz Director: Didier Bivel Writer: Jérôme Larcher Certificate: 15 Duration: 87 mins Released by: Matchbox Films Release date: 12th August 2019 Buy Hidden Kisses