Nematode diversity and distribution in the southern maritime Antarctic – clues to history?

first_imgNematode worms are one of the most important soil faunal groups in Antarctica. However, relatively little is known about their widerdistribution, biogeography and history in the region, and taxonomic information remains confused or incomplete. Here, we hypothesisethat the Alexander Island (southern maritime Antarctic) fauna includes elements that have survived (at least) the period of Pleistoceneglaciation in situ, forming a regional centre of endemism and biodiversity hotspot. We describe nematological surveys carried out acrossa latitudinal gradient between 68 and 771S along the southern Antarctic Peninsula, comparing the data obtained with the maritimeAntarctic fauna described in the few previous studies between northern Marguerite Bay and the South Orkney Islands (60–681S). Ingeneral, our survey supports previous findings of a lack of overlap at species level between the maritime and continental Antarcticbiogeographical zones, with the large majority of specimens obtained from all survey sites being attributable to known maritime or newand currently endemic taxa. However, collections from Alexander Island, Alamode Island and the most westerly site sampled, CharcotIsland, include specimens morphologically very close to two known continental Antarctic species, which may indicate a link between thetwo regions. The fauna obtained at the northern study sites (ca. 681S, Adelaide Island, Marguerite Bay) closely matches that describedpreviously. However, in contrast with widely described patterns of decreasing diversity in other Antarctic biota, species richnessincreased markedly at locations on Alexander Island (ca. 721S), including a substantial element of undescribed species (50% of taxaacross all locations, 40% of taxa found on Alexander Island). Finally, the most southerly samples obtained, from inland nunataks inEllsworth Land (75–771S), indicate a fauna that does not include nematodes, which is exceptional not only in an Antarctic context butalso for soils worldwide.last_img read more

Stunning Photos Capture The Beauty Of EDC Orlando [A Gallery]

first_imgElectric Daisy Carnival made its way to Orlando, FL earlier this month, boasting a stunning celebration of electronic music from around the globe. EDC Orlando welcomed a lineup that featured Bassnectar, The Chainsmokers, Porter Robinson and so many more. Of course, a major facet of EDC is the visual production, with incredible displays that are unparalleled.Fortunately, photographer Lauren Sea Photo & Design was on hand to capture this festival for us. Check out her work below. Load remaining imageslast_img read more

Avoiding the Sins of the Past

first_imgDuring EMC’s annual customer and partner conference, EMC World, I spoke with numerous CIOs at various stages of moving their organizations’ workloads to the cloud. Those discussions confirmed that forward-looking CIOs recognize cloud’s potential and are eager to share and receive guidance on how best to maximize IT’s value. No surprise, since IDC estimates that at some point this year 80 percent of enterprise applications will be deployed on cloud platforms.Part of these CIOs’ motivation is to keep the IT function relevant and valuable in an environment where end-users not only bring their “consumer world” expectations to work with them – but also have new IT sourcing choices, through “X as a Service” and other public cloud options. This dynamic is exacerbated by “bring-your-own-device” and other mobility and consumerization trends. If an IT organization isn’t actively facing these influences, or lacks the agility to support new business and technology demands, business units may independently (and most already are) roll their own IT as a Service initiatives, thus creating “shadow IT.”Shadow IT is but one of the ways CIOs risk replicating IT sins of the past. Historically, IT often built infrastructure that optimized individual applications but resulted in rigid silos of inefficient, dedicated resources that were expensive to maintain, difficult to manage, and cumbersome to scale as the needs of the organization evolved.Cloud computing provides CIOs with the potential to build an agile infrastructure based on flexible pools of resources that can be shared to support the varied and changing needs of the business. Such a model may take the form of private (internal), public (external), or hybrid (a mix of internal and external) clouds, and include a growing ecosystem of compatible partner platforms that truly enables a consistent cloud experience – independent of where the infrastructure sits and who is managing it. However, even in moving to the cloud, CIOs still risk repeating those sins of the past if they don’t recognize the need to standardize on a consistent cloud architecture.This is a pivotal juncture for IT, and CIOs need to provide the strategic direction to realize the promise of cloud computing. CIOs must recognize that their role can change from a manager of technology assets to a manager of a portfolio of services – enabled by a standardized cloud platform. Without architectural discipline, IT may end up optimizing certain workloads by using a variety of purpose-built cloud-based offerings and public cloud providers, business unit by business unit, leading to “cloud sprawl.”The result? A sub-optimal infrastructure that prevents the movement of data across applications, limits the ability to govern and secure sensitive data and intellectual property, and dilutes the potential of comprehensive analytics.A better approach: standardizing on a common platform, such as VMware and their associated management and orchestration tools, EMC information infrastructure and data protection technologies, or Vblock converged infrastructure for ease of deployment and operations. Standardization makes it possible to federate and move workloads and data easily within a hybrid cloud environment. This common cloud platform provides the architectural flexibility and agility for IT to deliver “IT as a Service” that satisfies end users, while still being able to optimize across the organization. CIO’s thus become an internal service provider to the business, independent of where the infrastructure is located.Adopting this approach to cloud computing requires that the role of the CIO – and indeed of IT – evolve, from tactical technology implementer to strategic technologist and portfolio manager. It means the IT department has to transform from a behind the scenes staff to a front-and-center business unit that functions as an in-house service provider, offering a portfolio of services to the business, driven by service level agreements and evaluated based on business outcomes. In short, capitalizing on cloud is not just about adopting cloud technology; it also requires an architectural framework and the transformation of people and processes in order to avoid repeating IT sins of the past.last_img read more

Colombian Armed Conflict Claims Over Five Million Victims

first_imgBy Dialogo October 02, 2012 More than five million victims have resulted from the armed conflict in Colombia that has been affecting the country for almost half a century, of which about 600,000 people were murdered, according to government calculations. The figures, however, do not reveal the full scale of the problem, indicated Paula Gaviria, head of the Unit for Integral Attention and Reparation of Victims [of armed conflict], the organization that implemented a law regarding this issue, which was passed in June 2011. “So far, we have registered cases since 1974,” specified the official source, after pointing out that due to the complexity of the Colombian armed conflict and its long duration, it is very difficult to obtain the exact number of victims, survivors or dead. Out of the estimated total, 40% (2 million) are guerrilla victims, while 25% (1.2 million) are paramilitary victims, stated Gaviria, who insisted that the figures are not definitive, since denouncers are not obliged to declare which group was the aggressor, and in many cases, the victims are not aware of which organization was responsible for the offensive. The main reasons why victims make claims are: forced displacement, kidnapping, sexual violence, recruitment of minors, and anti-personnel mines. After Colombia suffered political violence in the early 1950s, the country engaged in an armed conflict with the emergence of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the National Liberation Army (ELN) from the 1960s onward. The armed conflict between these guerrillas and the State worsened with the emergence of drug cartels in the 70s, and in the 80s with far-right paramilitary groups that fought a bloody battle against these guerrillas. Now, President Juan Manuel Santos will start peace negotiations with the FARC on October 15, to be held in Norway and Cuba. The Colombian head of state is looking forward to a successful outcome by the end of the year.last_img read more

Way cleared for China to share H5N1 samples

first_imgSep 11, 2006 (CIDRAP News) – US officials have resolved what they’re calling a lapse in communication that has contributed to China’s delay in sending promised poultry samples of H5N1 avian influenza virus to the United States.Early last week, a Chinese agricultural official told news services that Beijing was still working out a protocol for sharing poultry H5N1 samples with the international community, even though the government had promised in March to provide up to 20 samples for analysis in World Health Organization (WHO)-affiliated laboratories.After the announcement, the newspaper China Daily reported that the agriculture ministry had blamed a US lab for the delay, saying the lab did not complete required import procedures. A WHO representative, however, told Agence France-Presse last week that logistical arrangements were already in place.Kathy Harben, a spokesperson on global issues for the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), told the Associated Press (AP) Sep 8 that the samples were delayed because China and the CDC had problems agreeing whether the samples should be classified as diagnosed or undiagnosed.Packing and handling procedures are the same for both, but Harben said the CDC preferred the samples be shipped as “undiagnosed” because the forms and approval process for such samples take less time. She said the approval process for “diagnosed” samples, the classification preferred by the Chinese agriculture ministry, could take weeks.China and the CDC agreed to have the samples shipped as “diagnosed,” Harben told the AP, and said she expected that the CDC would receive the samples by the end of September.Harben told CIDRAP News today that officials are still working out details about what samples are coming. “We’ll know more later,” she said.The CDC routinely works with China’s health ministry whenever it receives human H5N1 samples; however, Harben said receiving poultry samples is rare and has been somewhat more difficult because CDC officials are making arrangements with a different branch of government, the agriculture ministry.China has not shared avian flu virus samples from poultry since late 2004, according to recent news reports. Poultry H5N1 viruses, especially those from China, are needed to develop vaccines and drugs.last_img read more