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Google Maps thinks it can better predict traffic on your commute

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Google Maps added several updates to its app to make commuting much easier.
Image: Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images

Google Maps is streamlining your commute. 

Several new features arrived in the app today that will make it easier to multitask while you’re commuting. The updates are all about keeping you in the Google Maps mobile app while getting to work in your car, on the train, bus, or even on foot. Here’s a quick rundown of the updates:

Musical Maps

Instead of toggling between Spotify, Apple Music, or Google Play Music to listen to your favorite playlist while you slog through traffic or hang to a strap on a crowded bus, the Google Maps app now integrates with all of those music players.

Turn up the volume without leaving beyond your map.

Image: google

So your Spotify playlist to pump you up for the workday will now show up on the bottom of the map you’ve pulled up to get to work. 

Live commuting

That music integration is all well and good, but many people might think they don’t use the Google Maps app to get to work — you know where you’re going; you go there five times a week. But a new commute tab shows live traffic updates. 

So if your usual route is backed up, Google Maps can now tell you how much longer it’ll take to get to your desk. Or the app can tell you an alternate route to take that might seem counterintuitive but avoids the slow-down.

On Android phones, you can receive notifications about delays as they happen.

Traffic predictions for your commute.

Image: google

Mix it up

You might drive to the train station and then walk to the office so your commute is even more likely to get bogged down by something. Never fear, that’s where the mixed-commute info comes in, with each leg of your journey mapped out with delays and possibly shortcuts. 

The map shows every leg of your journey.

Image: google

Your route will even let you know when your train is supposed to arrive so your ETA will be more accurate.

Real-time rides

The least favorite part about taking public transit is the guessing game: Will my train be leaving the station just as I walk down the stairs? Will it arrive at 8:25 a.m. like it’s supposed to or be 10 minutes late?

So Google Maps is now working with transit systems in 80 cities worldwide (including Los Angeles; Chicago; Philadelphia; New York; San Francisco; Orange County; Atlanta; Boise, Sanford, Florida; Indianapolis; Boston; St. Louis; Nashville; Austin; San Antonio; Fresno, California; Lansing, Michigan; and Seattle in the U.S. and Toronto; Moscow; Sydney; Vancouver; São Paulo; Amsterdam; Rotterdam; The Hague; Jakarta; Rio De Janeiro; St Petersburg; and Taipei internationally) to show you where your bus or train is in real time. All on the map. 

Here comes the bus at last.

Image: google

In Sydney the map will show how crowded the bus or train on Transport New South Wales is in real time, so you will know whether you’ll be taking a seat or preparing for a squished ride. The crowd feature is expected to come to more cities soon.

So while Google Maps can’t make the bus appear or that traffic jam disappear (yet), at least now you’ll know what’s going on.

Read more: https://mashable.com/article/google-maps-commute-music-transit-predictions/

Dambe: Forgotten Nigerian martial art is growing online

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(CNN)From Nollywood actresses to afrobeat superstars, August Udoh, has captured them all.

He’s lauded as Nigeria’s most talented celebrity photographer but it is the stories of those on the very margins of society that are important to him.
The fighters captured in series “Dambe” are ordinary working men. “They have normal jobs. Some are truck drivers, others mechanics,” Udoh told CNN. But with one exception – their downtime is spent competing in martial arts sport dambe.
It’s a traditional form of boxing where competitors fight with a single bounded hand for three rounds. As Udoh’s series title suggests, this martial arts club is underground, its presence spread only through word-of-mouth.
“I had a security guard from the north who was talking about it and he showed me a video posted online,” says Udoh. “I thought this is actually true – there is an underground fighting club that a lot of people in Nigeria don’t know about.”

One armed ‘kill’

Dambe’s history stems from the Hausa people in northern Nigeria and is thought to date back centuries. It was local butchers by trade who competed. The stronger punching hand known as the spear is traditionally tied with cotton and rope, while the other hand shields against opponent’s punches.
Contestants can also kick – the fight ends when an opponent falls to the ground – referred to as a “kill”.
Traditionally the cloth bound hand was dipped in resin and covered in shards of glass – this has been banned. Boxing gloves were introduced in some areas to make the sport safer. But many still consider it a brutal sport due to the injuries inflicted.

Viral videos

Long forgotten, the sport is gaining popularity thanks to dedicated YouTube channels such as Dambe Warriors, which launched last year and has garnered more than 57,000 subscribers and 15 million views.
While Udoh’s images present the raw, unfettered energy of the art’s young competitors, dambe is a poor man’s sport. Fighters are almost certainly low income earners.
For them it’s a chance to make money explains Udoh. Tickets for fights are often sold at around 500 Naira ($1.38) per person. “Usually the fight organizers make 50,000 Naira ($137) a day.”
Victorious competitors can earn anywhere from $20 up to $500, which they can use to feed and take care of their families.
“As a fighter – champions earn a lot,” Udoh said. “If you’ve won a lot of fights then you get paid more. There is a hierarchy thing where you attract high fees because you bring in the crowd.”
Gifts are also given by fans. “People send money back to their parents, one fighter was given a house.”

Nigeria’s wealth gap

Udoh spent a week traveling around Niger and Ogun states talking to the boxers who compete. The photographs raise questions on the widening regional inequalities within the country – which has been widely criticized by humanitarian groups.
Those living in often wealthier states in the south have no concept of how their northern neighbors live explains Udoh. “I have friends who have not been out of Lagos since they were born – so they don’t know.”
“People don’t realize every other state is not like Lagos,” he adds.
The photographs are about shedding light upon such regional disparities Udoh explains. In 2012, he spent a month traveling around Kogi to capture the country’s flood victims.
Kogi, a northern state was the worst affected by the 2012 floods. Some 623,900 people were said to have been displaced as a result and 152,575 hectares of farmland destroyed. Many of the victims homes and infrastructure have not yet been rebuilt says Udoh. The towns today remain virtually unchanged since the floods.
“I slept in [my] car for a month to take their pictures, there was nowhere to sleep” says Udoh. “I really felt their pain but there was nothing I could do.”
Nigeria’s recent September floods has killed nearly 200 people in the country and displaced around 176,000, according to Nigeria’s Emergency Management Agency.
Udoh notes the power of his images stem from the stories behind them. He adds: “I want to convince people to look outside of Lagos by telling these stories with my pictures.”

Read more: https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/08/africa/august-udoh-dambe-nigeria/index.html

One dead in Texas flooding

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(CNN)One body was recovered Tuesday after floodwaters in Texas damaged homes and forced evacuations, authorities said.

Heavy rainfall caused one river in the central Texas region to rise to a near-record level in about a day, leading to a bridge collapse, flooded homes and evacuations.
The Llano River rose to nearly 40 feet Tuesday in the city of Llano — about 35 feet higher than it was just 24 hours earlier — after 8 to 10 inches of rain fell in the area over the past two days, the National Weather Service said.
    A few miles away, in Kingsland, the swollen river rushed against the top of the RM 2900 bridge for hours, eventually causing it to collapse, video from CNN affiliate KEYE showed. No one appeared to be on the bridge, and no injuries were immediately reported.
    Video from Darlene Walthall also showed the river washing over the span before the collapse.
    The Llano County Office of Emergency Management ordered people living within a quarter mile of the river to evacuate Tuesday morning.
    The Llano River meets the Colorado River in Kingsland. Houses near the Colorado were flooded, resident Terri Kleen said. Video that she posted to Instagram showed water rising to the top of boat dock structures.
    View this post on Instagram

    1st wildfires during the summer, now flooding. We are ok, but my neighbors just down the street from us are not so lucky. Homes flooded, boat docks gone or under water. 2 County officers & 2 DPS Troopers just passed my house to help some of those neighbors. @zackshieldsonfox7 @scottfisherfox7

    A post shared by Bentley, Frostie & Corgmom (@bentley_n_frostie) on

    Law enforcement officers were helping people from flooded areas, she said.
    Gov. Greg Abbot on Tuesday issued a state disaster declaration for 18 counties affected by the flooding, including Llano County.
    “Texas is taking immediate action to respond to the threat of recent severe weather and flooding across the state,” the governor said in a statement.
    In nearby Marble Falls, Dale Heath recorded video of a car stuck in rushing water from a swollen Backbone Creek, a Colorado River tributary.
    The flooded communities are about a 90-minute drive northwest of Austin.
      The Llano River’s crest of 39.91 feet in Llano was just below the record high of 41.5 feet there in June 1935.
      The river is expected to recede through Tuesday afternoon, but should stay in the major flood stage — over 23 feet — though Wednesday morning.

      Read more: https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/16/us/texas-llano-river-flooding/index.html

      Uber is developing an on-demand staffing business

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      Uber is reportedly developing a short-term staffing business to offer 1099 independent contractors for events and corporate functions, the Financial Times first reported. Dubbed Uber Works, the service would provide waiters, security guards and other temporary staffers to business partners, a source close to Uber told TechCrunch.

      Uber has been working on the project for several months in Chicago, after first trialing the project in Los Angeles. Uber already has a vast network of drivers — all of whom have become familiarized with the process of filing taxes as an independent contractor — who may be looking for additional work. However, Uber’s current pilot program does not include active Uber drivers.

      Uber Works falls under the purview of Rachel Holt, who stepped into the role of head of new modalities in June. Holt, who has been with Uber since 2011, is tasked with ramping up and onboarding new mobility services like bikes, scooters, car rentals and public transit integration.

      In a job posting for a general manager to lead special projects in Chicago, Uber says, “our business is based around providing a flexible, on-demand supply for our business partners – it’s imperative that we have intuitive and responsive account management to support for our business partners in addressing their needs promptly.”

      Uber declined to comment for this story. But as the company gears up for its initial public offering next year, Uber is clearly trying to diversify its business. In the last year, Uber double-downed on multi-modal transportation with the acquisition and deployment of JUMP bike-share. And in the last month, Uber deployed electric scooters in Santa Monica, Calif.

      Whether this effort launches remains to be seen, but it’s certainly something Uber is exploring and positioning as a business-to-business service. In a similar vein, Uber is also working to create a pipeline to hire some of its driver partners.

      Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2018/10/18/uber-is-developing-an-on-demand-staffing-business/

      Controlling Girl Set 22 Rules For Her Boyfriend, So The Internet Gave Him Some Surprising Advice

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      Every relationship has its own rules. Mostly implied, sometimes spoken. But one woman decided to put it in writing and list every demand she had for her boyfriend. The insane agreement probably would have remained between the two of them, if it wasn’t for a surprising turn of events.

      The guy traded in his car and left the “contract” inside. Later, Twitter user @kkeyes96 found it and uploaded it online. As it went viral, men all over the internet had moments of silence for their brother, hoping he eventually dodged the biggest bullet of his life. In another twist of the bizarre story, @kkeyes96 had to end up deleting the post. “Too many people who couldn’t read” had mistakenly thought his girlfriend was the author of the list and started to talk trash about her.

      Scroll down to read the rules and tell us in the comments if at least two of them sound reasonable.

      One guy was so shocked  to find a ridiculous relationship “contract” in a used car, he just had to post it online

      Image credits: kkeyes96

      Men were quick to offer advice

      And share their own thoughts and experiences

      Read more: http://www.boredpanda.com/girlfriend-rules-list-boyfriend-men-tumblr/

      Melyssa Ford abides skull fracture in merciless ruin on California freeway

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      Radio personality Melyssa Ford was retrieving at a Los Angeles hospital Sunday after suffering substantial hurts in a major recent vehicle wreck.

      Ford, 41, lost manager traumata, including a skull rupture, when her Jeep flip-flop on the Ventura Freeway on Thursday, her rep told Us Weekly. A tractor trailer-reportedly clipped the back of Ford’s tire and communicated her into a tailspin on the freeway.

      “The murderous wallop cast her 2017 Jeep Wrangler Sahara Unlimited into a tailspin and the vehicle turned three times before landing upside down, ” the rep told the magazine.

      The former “Real Housewives of Atlanta” star was surrounded by emergency personnels lying beside the totaled Jeep. A painting posted by talk testify multitude Claudia Jordan pictured the extent of the damage.

      “Melyssa doesn’t remember much so I’m hoping witnesses will come forward and assist in putting the parts back together, ” Jordan wrote in an Instagram message.

      Ford’s rep said that she had a “1 0-inch open wound” that had to be “surgically closed.” Ford too had various huge gashes on her arms and legs, the rep said.

      “God and her seatbelt saved her life, ” the rep told Us Weekly.

      Ford is currently the co-host of “Hollywood Unlocked Uncensored.” She’s too appeared on the Bravo series “Blood, Sweat& Heels” and the movie “Think Like a Man.”

      Ryan Gaydos is an editor for Fox News. Follow him on Twitter @RyanGaydos.

      21 Disney Movie Details That You May Have Never Noticed

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      Imgur user Rizzivision recently published a fascinating post outlining a series of interesting details from various Disney/Pixar films.

      The list is full of tiny observations and cross-references to other films in the Disney/Pixar universe that will make any film geek giddy. If you enjoy reading about interesting and quirky details in films, be sure to check out the subreddit /r/MovideDetails!

      [via Rizzivision on Imgur]

      1. In The Lion King, unlike the other lions, Scar’s claws are always displayed throughout the movie.

      2. In Cars, the flies are actually tiny VW ‘Bugs’ with wings

      3. In Zootopia, while Officer Judy Hopps is ticketing cars around the city, she never crosses the street illegally. She always uses a crosswalk and looks both ways before crossing

      4. In Monsters Inc, Sully’s chair has a hole in it to accommodate his tail.

      5. In Cars the truck stop advertises “convertible waitresses†i.e., topless.

      6. In Ratatouille, Anton Ego’s typewriter resembles a skull and his office a coffin.

      7. In Inside Out, two of the memory orbs on the shelves contain scenes from Up. One features Carl & Ellie’s wedding, while the other shows their house.

      8. In Toy Story, Woody is trapped in a crate which is stuck under a ‘Binford’ tool-box. Binford is the fictional tool company in the TV show Home Improvement which starred Tim Allen, the voice of Buzz Lightyear.

      9. After the plane is blown up in The Incredible, Helen (Elastigirl) knows the plane debris is going to fall on them due to seeing the reflection in the water.

      10. In The Little Mermaid when King Triton is introduced, you can see Mickey, Donald, Goofy and Kermit the Frog in the crowd.

      11. In Hercules, the Fates tell Hades all the planets will align but only show 6 planets. These are the 5 planets plus Earth that the ancient Greeks were aware of and could see with the naked eye.

      12. In The Brave Little Toaster, all of the walls in the cottage are cleaned only as high as Blanky can reach.

      13. In Finding Nemo, Bruce the shark starts crying when Marlin starts talking about Nemo, saying “I never knew my fatherâ€. Male sharks mate with the female then leave, so baby sharks never actually meet their father.

      14. The Magic Carpet from Aladdin makes an appearance in Moana

      15. The hold up scene in the Incredibles is an homage to a similar scene from Die Hard with a Vengeance, which also starred Samuel L. Jackson.

      16. In Toy Story 3, Buzz Lightyear’s batteries are exposed showing the Buy n Large brand, the same company responsible for making WALL-E.

      17. In Monsters, Inc. there are multiple sizes of coffee cup for each of the different sized monsters.

      18. In Inside Out, while going through Imagination Land, a game box can be seen in the background with Nemo on it called, Find Me.

      19. In Coco, you can see a poster for The Incredibles.

      20. Insuricare, the company that offers “car life insurance†to the cars in Cars 2, is the same company Bob Parr works for in The Incredibles.

      21. At the end of Ratatouille, Anton Ego is a little bit fatter. This is poignant since he states, “I don’t like food, I love it… if I don’t love it I don’t swallow.â€

      Read more: https://twistedsifter.com/2018/10/disney-movie-details-you-may-have-never-noticed/

      Rob& Chyna: the saddest establish on Tv

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      The format of this dreadfully dull show is identical to others of the Kardashian empire: wearisome incidents of people sitting in kitchens not feeing cheese plates

      Is there a least qualified actuality show virtuoso than Rob Kardashian? If you lined up 10 people from the throwing record of A& Es Intervention and Rob Kardashian and had to choose one to base an ongoing television series around, would you ever pick him unless people know his last name? Isnt this a tragedy? Shouldnt we all be more disturbed?

      Sunday darkness premiere of the brand-new E! sequence Rob& Chyna distinguishes the return of the black sheep Kardashian to the public eye. Hes invested years of his life unwilling to leave his room, which caused him to addition( his terms) a traction of weight. He gazes less comfortable obliging seeing linked with other human beings than the little orphan girl Newt from the movie Aliens. A Los Angeles Dodgers hat covers whats left of the poorest of the poor people thin, matted hair. His wardrobe contained in T-shirts , nondescript jeans and sneakers. In other messages, when I watch this astoundingly depressing platform, I check myself and what I might become( minus the millions of dollars ).

      The first few minutes of Rob& Chyna intend to do us empathize with Rob and his pregnant fiancee Blac Chyna. As an digression, isnt it a bit horrid that Blac Chyna runs almost exclusively by the appoint Chyna in the first escapade now that the original Chyna the former WWE wrestler has died? Its like rummaging through people jewelry after a funeral.

      Regardless of what you call her, Blac Chyna is the actual hotshot of this demonstrate, even if her name is second on the pavilion. She came up from the world-famous airstrip fraternities of Atlanta and became something of an entrepreneur, at least in accordance with the rules that we characterize that word in 2016. She took the Kardashian template of monetizing tabloid notoriety through a faith of identity social media ubiquity, branded concoctions, and now, the final section of the puzzle, an E! reality dealership. Shes become a major supporting player in the ongoing Kardashian meta-narrative having a baby with the rapper Tyga, who then leaves her for Kylie Jenner, which leads to Chyna link troops with Rob. Whether or not her relationship with Rob is genuine or a calculated effort to increase her deserving potential is not for me to decide (* cough its bullshit cough *) but what is is whether or not this TV show is good. Its not.

      Rob
      Rob& Chyna: led with the wind. Photograph: E!

      If your litmus test for protruding with a programme designed is reacting the issues to does someone fart within the first 10 minutes with a yes, then Rob& Chyna is for you. Spoiler alert, Chyna farts in the car. If you prefer a little bit of drama, then maybe flip over to another path. Or throw your cable box or streaming design into the nearest open body of water and stray into the town square. Either one is fine with me.

      The format of this painfully dulls show is identical to the other outposts of the Kardashian empire: interminable incidents of parties driving indulgence automobiles on featureless superhighways, be standing kitchens not eating cheese illustrations, or folding clothes for a business excursion that may or may not ever happen. During these scenes, mush-mouthed pod beings debate some ill-defined conflict. Someone needs to go to rehab for a ambiguous problem. Person needs to textbook person back about a concept that happened off camera. Someone feels disrespected. A party invite is lost in the mail. Watching these indicates is like speaking the most banal email thread at 3am. Plug sad-eyed agoraphobe Rob Kardashian into this format and you have a dry for insomnia so potent, the Food and Drug Administration should govern it.

      The ostensible scheme of this occurrence revolves around Rob alleging Chyna of texting guys behind his back. He swears this to be the case because he discovers that Chyna has changed the passcode on her iPhone. He even insinuates that shes securing up with her ex, Tyga. All of this takes residence with Rob spread out comfortably on a couch. Chyna denies any evil, then accuses Rob of contacting ladies behind her back. He apparently acknowledges it, which I vaguely remember before my eyelids glued closed for the evening. It must be the case, because the very next incident is Chyna in another expensive vehicle screaming at Rob to stop texting bitches.

      These are the moments one watches actuality TV for hostility, incoherent call and profanity. This is why I favor the Andy Cohen Bravo model for reality over the clumsy Ryan Seacrest/ Kris Jenner luxury gabfests. Contrast Rob& Chyna with Bravos Below Deck, currently on its fourth season and with one spinoff under its loop. Below Decks premise is simple: introduce a knot of attractive deckhands on a mega-yacht, travel them with alcohol, and encourage them to melt down every occurrence. Would you rather watch that or a prove starring people very famed to form proper morons of themselves for your amusement? The answer is, neither, Im a grownup who is too busy adding value to the culture to demean myself with such trifles, but dont annoy, I picked the show about yachties drunkenly robbing up too.

      I will say that the producers of Rob& Chyna( which include the titular Rob and Chyna among their grades) do try to spice things up. Scott Disick appears in the role played by Robs only friend in the whole world and his chauffeur, schlepping him around Los Angeles like a pasty grey Morgan Freeman from Driving Miss Daisy. Theres a memorable vistum where Rob marches into Chynas home in full Eeyore mode, carrying flowers to apologize for texting bitches. Chyna isnt having it, grabs the flowers, chows them in a reserve, then knocks Rob out of her room. This is the turning point of the suspect fib, as the rest of the chapter concerns Chyna trying to get Rob to text her back, as she has seemingly forgotten that she screamed at him to leave her alone while pee-pee all over his romantic gesture. Im sure Rob Kardashian, AKA Calabasas Morrissey, really took that well.

      Finally, Kris Jenner, matriarch of the expansive Kardashian family and former nemesis of Blac Chyna, appears to counsel Chyna on how handled with Rob. Jenner is shown to be so prudent that I half expected her to have grown a beard, picked up a large twig, and hurled on a pointy hat off-screen. Much has been made of how Blac Chyna is so cunning and took down the Kardashians by getting engaged to Rob. Thats a neat little underdog narrative, but if you think that Kris Jenner isnt inventive enough to use this to her advantage and will be the eventual winner of this dim-witted race, then you arent paying attention to the display. Thats fine, since it probably made you pass out from wearines, but the fact remains that one of the last faces you see in this first episode is Kris Jenner. The whole moronic project is hers and hers alone. Chyna can have a piece, as long as she pays her taxes to her feudal lord.

      And then theres Rob. At last-place, they found a practice to monetize his mopey face and wrinkled robes. Instead of a Shrek-like man they impede locked up in a cellar, he has his own see, which only furthers the aims of his family. In exchange, this follower who likely has real clinical depression has to pretend to be a Tv sun. By accident, E! has stumbled upon the saddest evidence on television, so fitted with existential anguish that youd assume it was drummed up by a government-funded novelist in some sodden Scandinavian country over a bottle of cheap scotch. If “youre watching” more than one of the following options episodes, youll perhaps find yourself not leaving the house for years, just like Rob Kardashian.

      Chicago Officer Jason Van Dyke Guilty Of Murder In Laquan McDonald Shooting

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      Jason Van Dyke, the Chicago police officer charged with murder in the 2014 shooting death of teenager Laquan McDonald while on duty, was found guilty on Friday.

      A Cook County jury found Van Dyke guilty of second-degree murder, as well as 16 counts of aggravated battery ― one for each bullet he fired into McDonald, 17. He was acquitted of official misconduct, and a charge of first-degree murder was vacated for the second-degree conviction.

      Judge Vincent Gaughan revoked bail and ordered Van Dyke taken into custody to await sentencing later this month. The officer faces up to 20 years in prison for the second-degree murder charge, and each aggravated battery charge carries a maximum sentence of six to 30 years.

      The jury deliberated for less than eight hours over two days in the case, in which Van Dyke faced the possibility of life in prison for shooting McDonald on a Chicago street in October 2014 ― much of the confrontation captured on a police car dashcam. 

      Van Dyke showed little emotion as the verdict was read by the foreman of the jury, which consisted of eight women and four men. He was promptly led out of the courtroom after the verdict.

      Across the city, protesters gathered in groups and waited for the verdict to come down. In front of City Hall, more than two dozen people formed and held signs, according to the Chicago Tribune. Some held phones to their ears as the verdict was read and, upon the word “guilty,” cheered and chanted.

      Hundreds more demonstrators marched through downtown streets in celebration as police blocked traffic for them, The New York Times reported. Several jurors, speaking anonymously, told reporters after the hearing that there was never a chance for acquittal during deliberations ― the main discussion surrounded whether to convict on first- or second-degree murder.

      Earlier in the day, Chicago police were on high alert as the city prepared for the verdict in the rare trial of an officer accused of murder for an on-duty killing. Hundreds of police were seen packing street corners and city parks. Jurors, who deliberated for five hours on Thursday and about 2 1/2 more on Friday, were sequestered by Judge Vincent Gaughan and kept at an unidentified hotel overnight.

      Protesters and police had surrounded the courthouse before the verdict was read. There were reports that some workplaces allowed employees to go home early, and that some Chicago schools were on “soft lockdown” or let students go home in preparation for anticipated protests.

      During the trial, Van Dyke testified in his own defense that he feared for his life and that McDonald was behaving erratically (an autopsy revealed PCP in his system). His defense team cited a state law that allows officers to use deadly force if it’s necessary to stop a fleeing suspect who has committed a felony while using a deadly weapon, according to Vice News. McDonald was carrying a knife at the time, but the dashboard camera footage refuted Van Dyke’s claim that the teen was aggressively swinging the blade at him.

      Three other officers await trial on charges of trying to cover up the killing and obscure the investigation.

      Assistant prosecutor Jody Gleason argued that Van Dyke had no right to fire even one shot, let alone 16, including several that struck the teen in the back, and while he was already on the ground. 

      “It’s Jason Van Dyke firing bullets, ripping into the flesh of Laquan McDonald 16 times. That’s not justified, that’s not necessary — that’s first-degree murder,” prosecutor Joseph McMahon told jurors, according to NPR. He urged jurors to convict on first-degree murder and aggravated battery.

      Van Dyke’s lawyer, Dan Herbert, compared the scene that night to a monster movie, telling jurors that McDonald had attacked a truck driver and slashed a police vehicle’s tires just before he was shot.

      “When a monster turns and looks at the victim, that’s when the music starts to play,” the defense lawyer said.

      Two alternative jurors who were dismissed from the trial on Thursday said they would have leaned toward finding the officer guilty of murder, according to the Chicago Tribune.

      One of them, a white woman, noted that other officers on scene that night didn’t use deadly force. 

      “Where was [McDonald] actually causing an issue that Jason Van Dyke thought that he needed to use deadly force? I just didn’t understand that,” the alternative juror told the newspaper.

      This story has been updated with details from the scene in Chicago.

      Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/chicago-officer-jason-van-dyke-murder-verdict-laquan-mcdonald_us_5bb76588e4b01470d050c9c4

      Top 10 tips for starting at university

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      Image copyright Getty Images
      Image caption Fresh-faced and ready to go – it’s the start of a new university year

      The new duvet cover has been bought, posters are packed, a favourite teddy has been sneaked in and the car boot is crammed full.

      It’s that time of year when young people are heading off to university for the first time.

      We asked graduates and older students for their top tips for starting at university.

      1. Manage your workload

      Kaylie Knowles, 24, studied at Nottingham Trent University, then did her PGCE at Derby University. She says staying on top of the workload is crucial.

      “I got on just fine doing my undergrad at Trent, but my final year at Derby was a very stressful year leading me to four or five meltdowns across the year.

      “All I’d say is prioritise your workload and make sure you take a break when you feel the workload is getting too much. “

      2. Plan out a weekly budget

      Mary O’Connell, 23, who did English literature at York University and an MA in Film Studies at King’s College London, recommends setting yourself a weekly budget.

      “Don’t spend all your money on Freshers Week. If you haven’t really worked before uni then you may not have seen that much money in your account before. But remember that it’s still a loan that you need to be sensible with.

      Image copyright Mary O’Connell
      Image caption Mary: Learning to manage your loan is crucial

      “Plan out a weekly budget. You can use an app to track your spending if you want to get an idea of how much you’re spending, because it’s something we usually underestimate.”

      Sian Reed, 25, who studied marketing at Hull University, followed by an MA in sports journalism at Sheffield Hallam, agrees.

      “My first top tip would be learn to budget. I know it sounds all serious but just because your student loan has come in, doesn’t mean you should spend it all at once.

      “Just take half an hour or so to sit down and look at what money you have coming in and what you’re spending.

      “It might mean making some adjustments like boosting your income or reducing your spending (ask for a student discount everywhere, you’ll be surprised at the sort of places that offer it as they don’t always advertise) but it means you can live comfortably.”

      3. Back up your work

      Peter Rogers, 22, who graduated from York University last year, says it’s a good idea to back up your work in more than one place.

      “We all had gmail accounts through our university, so I used Google Drive to save everything which meant it was stored in the cloud.

      “One piece of advice would be to make sure you save different versions of a piece of work as you go along.

      Image copyright Peter Rogers
      Image caption Peter recommends backing up your work in more than one place

      “For example, if you are writing an essay on the French Revolution, save it as ‘French Revolution half’ at the halfway stage, and then again as a separate version three-quarters of the way through, etc.

      “That way if you do manage to delete a copy you will not have to rewrite from the beginning.”

      4. Make the most of the first year

      Peter also says that the first year can often be a little lighter academically than subsequent years, so it’s worth enjoying it.

      “If your first year doesn’t count towards your overall grade, make the most of the freedom that offers you,” he suggests.

      “I still look back and wish I had done a little less work (nobody asks me what grade I got in first year) and spent more time trying out activities, sports or just hanging out with friends.

      “Obviously the academic side is important but that really amps up in second and third year anyway.”

      5. Don’t be afraid to be choosy about friends

      Emmeke Megannety 21, a second-year journalism student at Nottingham Trent University, says it’s worth taking your time to find good friends.

      “People starting uni need to remember that the people you meet in your first week will not necessarily be your friends for life.

      Image copyright Emmeke Megannety
      Image caption Emmeke, 21, says friendships take time to evolve

      “Don’t think that you have to stick to people like glue just because you haven’t met anyone else yet.

      “Throw yourself into activities and societies, get a job, strike up a conversation with someone at the gym – you’ll make so many friends throughout the year in the oddest of places.”

      Mary recommends joining all the societies that interest you.

      “You don’t just want your uni friends to be the people on your course and who you live with, so join a society to make friends there,” she says.

      “It’s a good way to socialise cheaply, especially if you’re not a big drinker. It also just makes the uni experience more fulfilling.”

      6. Look out for people

      Sadly many students suffer with mental health issues, such as depression and anxiety. Recent statistics show 146 students took their own lives in 2016.

      Peter says it’s important to keep an eye on your peers and ask searching questions.

      “I was, and continue to be, regularly surprised at the number of people who would look and act fine outwardly but were actually really struggling.

      “I think the key here is talking directly, especially with men. I know if I were just asked ‘How are you feeling?’ I’d probably just skirt around the question with a generic answer.

      “But if a friend asked ‘Do you think your mental health has been affected by….?’ we might be tempted to answer more honestly.”

      7. Eat a balanced diet

      Matt Broderick, 29, a graduate from Queens University Belfast, says a poor diet can affect your mood.

      “Learn to cook and go to class. I did neither of these things, or very, very little.

      “I spent all of my money on really unhealthy oven food or nasty takeaways and barely went to lectures.

      “I didn’t realise at the time but I was probably depressed because I was living in an awfully cold and dark house, eating dreadful food and only really leaving the house to go drinking with the odd class or lecture thrown in.

      “I wish I could hit the reset button and go to every single lecture, do all of my readings, eat better and spend my time more wisely rather than drinking away my student loan.”

      8. Learn to cook on a budget

      Picking up on the issue of food, Mary recommends learning how to cook on a budget.

      “Stop caring about brands just because you have them at home,” she advises.

      “For example, if you’re making something like a bolognese then buy the ‘basics’ version of the chopped tomatoes. It’s not an ingredient you need to have a special brand for – chopped tomatoes is chopped tomatoes.

      Image copyright Sian Reed
      Image caption Sian says it’s important to “stay true to yourself”

      “Tupperware is your friend: Cook food in bulk then freeze it in meal-sized portions.”

      Peter adds: “Like many students I didn’t really have anything other than rudimentary cookery skills before I went, and found learning to cook was reasonably enjoyable.”

      9. Stay in touch with friends from home

      Mary says keeping in touch with family and friends from back home is a good way of keeping loneliness at bay, and a good chance to speak openly about any problems.

      “Uni can be very lonely. Make sure you check in with your home friends who are also at uni and keep track of who might be having a hard time, and make sure you tell your friends if you find yourself struggling.”

      10. Stay true to yourself

      Sian’s other top tip for university is to “stay true to yourself”.

      “At university, students are usually living away from home for the first time which means no parents.

      “You don’t have to be an extrovert to enjoy the experience – don’t feel obliged to go on nights out because you feel forced to (you will regret it in the morning).

      “University seems to create a drinking culture so it’s okay if you’re not into it. Trust me, you will not be the only non-drinker on campus.

      “Alternatively, if you do have a big personality, make the most of your student life, as life after uni is nowhere near as cheap.”

      Produced by Katherine Sellgren and Shamaan Freeman-Powell

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      Read more: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-45549235