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Monday, 30 November 2015

Learn - What is: iFrame

An iFrame is an inline frame used inside a webpage to load another HTML document inside it. This HTML document may also contain JavaScript and/or CSS which is loaded at the time when iframe tag is parsed by the user’s browser.
WordPress users often come across iframes when they are trying to embed something from an external source into their WordPress site. The most common example of an iframe embed code is the YouTube video embed code which looks like this:
1<iframe width="420" height="315"src="//www.youtube.com/embed/qzOOy1tWBCg?rel=0" frameborder="0"allowfullscreen></iframe>
In the above example, the iframe tag loads YouTube’s video player with the video ID provided in the code. It has other parameters defined as well, such as height, width, frameborder, etc. These parameters will be used by the script which loads YouTube video player.
Many other third party websites may provide users with an iframe embed code to insert certain elements on their websites. Most commonly web analytics service providers, social media websites, and video sharing sites offer users embed code in iframe format.
Caution: Users are advised to be cautious when they are asked to embed iframe code into their website. You should only embed an iframe code into your website if it is from a reliable source, and you are certain about the identity of the website. Sometimes hackers may also leave iframe code in a WordPress site as a backdoor. This code loads itself in an iframe and provides hackers remote access to a hacked WordPress site.

Saturday, 28 November 2015

Loneliness induces biological changes, causes illness and early death

RelationshipDanger signals activated in brain by loneliness ultimately affect immune system, scientists claim
A study has shown that for the first time that loneliness is not just an emotional state of mind, it actually triggers genetic changes, which cause illness and early death.
The research was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Previous studies have found that social isolation is a major health problem that can increase the risk of premature death by 14 percent.
However until now, scientists have been unsure what is driving the phenomenon.
Now researchers at the University of Chicago and the University of California have discovered that loneliness actually triggers physical responses in the body, which make people sick.
It appears to trigger the ‘fight or flight’ stress signal, which affects the production of white blood cells. It also increases activity in genes, which produce inflammation in the body while lowering activity in genes, which fight off illness, promoting high levels of inflammation in the body.
Essentially, lonely people had a less effective immune response and more inflammation than non-lonely people. They feel socially threatened which has an enormous impact on health.
John Capitanio, of the California National Primate Research Centre at the University of California, Davis said: “Perceived social isolation is a risk factor for chronic illness and all-cause mortality but the molecular mechanisms remain ill understood.
“In humans, loneliness involves an implicit hyper-vigilance for social threat.”
The study examined loneliness in both humans and rhesus macaques, a highly social primate species.
They found that loneliness predicted how active the CTRA gene was, even a year later and vice versa. People who had high gene activity were still lonely after 12 months. They also showed higher levels of the fight-or-flight neurotransmitter, norepinephrine.
Previous research has found that norepinephrine can stimulate blood stem cells in bone marrow to make more of a particular kind of immune cell (monocytes) which ramps up inflammation in the body.
Both lonely humans and monkeys showed higher levels of monocytes in their blood. In an additional study, monkeys repeatedly exposed to mildly stressful social conditions such as unfamiliar cage-mates also showed increases in monocyte levels.

Check: ‘Well water triggers respiratory infections in babies’


 Breast-feeding for more than two months was linked to around a 50 percent reduction in the odds of developing type 2 diabetes for mothers who had already experienced gestational diabetes in the past. The study noted that the longer women breast-fed, the lower the odds of type 2 diabetes. PHOTO CREDIT: google.com/search
Breast-feeding for more than two months was linked to around a 50 percent reduction in the odds of developing type 2 diabetes for mothers who had already experienced gestational diabetes in the past. The study noted that the longer women breast-fed, the lower the odds of type 2 diabetes. PHOTO CREDIT: google.com/search
• Breast-feeding may cut risk of Type 2 diabetes for some women • Caffeine in pregnancy does not harm child’s IQ • Adding folic acid to bread, flour would prevent children being born or aborted with diseases like spina bifida
A new study suggests that babies exposed to high levels of arsenic in the womb, through their mothers drinking well water, are at increased risk for infections and respiratory symptoms in their first year of life.
Researchers, in the study was published recently in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, measured levels of arsenic in 412 pregnant women in New Hampshire whose homes had private wells. For a year after their babies were born, the women were surveyed every four months about the number and severity of their children’s infections and respiratory symptoms, such as wheezing.
Infants exposed to arsenic in the womb had more infections that led to a doctor visit or treatment with prescription medications, the investigators found. In addition, those exposed to higher levels of arsenic in the womb tended to have more upper and lower respiratory tract infections, as well as respiratory symptoms.
Also, new research suggests another potential benefit for moms who breast-feed- a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
The study, published online November 23 in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine, found that breast-feeding for more than two months was linked to around a 50 percent reduction in the odds of developing type 2 diabetes for mothers who had already experienced gestational diabetes in the past. The study noted that the longer women breast-fed, the lower the odds of type 2 diabetes.
Meanwhile, a new study suggests that moderate amounts of caffeine during pregnancy don’t appear to be linked to a child’s risk for lower IQ or behavior problems.
The research, published November 18 online in the American Journal of Epidemiology, included nearly 2,200 women in the United States whose caffeine intake was measured during pregnancy. The pregnancies occurred between 1959 and 1974, a period of time when coffee consumption during pregnancy was more common, according to researchers from Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, United States.
Children born to these women had IQ and behavioral assessments when they were four and seven years old. The researchers found no evidence that mom’s caffeine consumption during pregnancy had any effect on children.
In a previous analysis of data from the same group of women, the researchers also found that higher amounts of caffeine consumption during pregnancy was not linked to children’s risk of obesity.
Also, health experts have urged that folic acid should be added to bread and flour to prevent hundreds of babies being born or aborted every year with diseases like spina bifida.
Although pregnant women have been urged to take folic acid supplements for decades the rates of neural tube defects – birth defects of the brain, spine or spinal cord – have not fallen.
The Food Standards Agency has recommended that folic acid be added to bread and flour, like in the US, but the government has still not acted on the advice.
In research published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), experts from the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN), said voluntary measures were failing.
The researchers, including from the University of Oxford, said: “Neural tube defects represent one of the most prevalent groups of birth defects with serious consequences for newborns and their families.
Meanwhile, senior author Margaret Karagas, chair of epidemiology at Dartmouth College’s School of Medicine in Hanover, N.H., said in a college news release: “These results suggest that arsenic exposure may increase the risk and severity of certain types of infections.
“Respiratory infections and symptoms during infancy could signal a greater risk of later life atopy (the genetic tendency to develop allergic diseases) or respiratory impairment.”
Previous research has linked high levels of arsenic exposure to immune system disruption and greater susceptibility to infection. Well water is the main source of arsenic for most people, and nearly 10 percent to 15 percent of private wells in New Hampshire have arsenic levels above the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency limit.
All households with a private well should have their water tested for arsenic, the study authors recommended.
A senior research scientist with Kaiser Permanente Northern California and study author, Erica Gunderson, said: “The main policy implication is that we need to focus our breast-feeding promotion efforts to high-risk women, those who are obese or have a pregnancy with gestational diabetes.”
However, this study did not show that breast-feeding caused a lower risk of type 2 diabetes; it only found an association between these factors.
The study reported that Gunderson’s team followed more than 900 women two years after they had gestational diabetes during pregnancy and gave birth. During this time, 12 percent of them developed type 2 diabetes.
How the women fed their babies was categorized into five groups: exclusive breast-feeding, exclusive formula feeding, mostly breast-feeding (less than six ounces of daily formula), mostly formula (more than 17 ounces of daily formula) and mixed feeding (seven to 17 daily ounces of formula).
Moms who exclusively breast-fed their babies had a 54 percent lower risk of developing diabetes compared to moms who only used formula, the study noted. Women who fed their babies a mixture of formula and breast milk or even mostly used formula reduced the odds of type 2 diabetes by more than a third compared to formula-feeding alone, researchers found.
The length of breast-feeding also appeared related to type 2 diabetes risk, the study showed.
Breast-feeding for more than 10 months was linked to the mother’s reduced risk of diabetes by 57 percent compared to breast-feeding two months or less. Moms who breast-fed their babies somewhere between two months and 10 months had about half the risk of developing diabetes compared to those who breast-fed less than two months, according to the study.
So how might breast-feeding help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes? In several ways, Gunderson said.
“Lactation gives the insulin-producing cells in the body a rest because they don’t have to make so much insulin to lower blood glucose,” Gunderson said. “Breast-feeding uses up glucose and fat in the blood because those nutrients are transferred from the bloodstream into the breast tissue for milk production.”

Facebook ramps paid leave time for new dads


Mark ZuckerbergWith Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg about to become a dad, the social network boosted the amount of time fathers can take off to bond with their new babies.
Beginning with the new year, dads working full-time for Facebook anywhere in the world will have the option of taking four months’ paid leave.
All new dads working for Facebook outside the US currently get a minimum of four weeks’ paternity leave, with more time offered in locations where required by local law, according to Facebook.
Same-sex partners who are not primary caregivers for babies get the same paid leave time as dads, the social network said.
The change, effective January 1, essentially raises parental leave time for dads and non-custodial same-sex partners from four weeks to four months.
The change puts paternity leave outside the US on par with maternity leave at Facebook workplaces around the world, and extends the benefit to same-sex couples.
“In reviewing our parental leave policies, we have decided to make this change because it’s the right thing to do for our people and their families,” human resources boss Lori Matloff Goler said in a post on her Facebook page.
“This expanded benefit primarily affects new fathers and people in same-sex relationships outside the US.”
The paid time off can be taken any time during the year after a baby is born and includes adopted babies.
Maternity leave offered to Facebook employees around the world is already four months, and the benefit was available to both moms and dads in the United States.
– Baby bonus –
Facebook also gives a $4,000 bonus for parents to help meet the needs of new babies.
Zuckerberg, who heads the company, announced last week that he will take two months’ paternity leave after his wife gives birth to their first child.
“This is a very personal decision, and I’ve decided to take two months of paternity leave when our daughter arrives,” Zuckerberg said in a post on his Facebook page.
“Studies show that when working parents take time to be with their newborns, outcomes are better for the children and families.”
California-based Facebook gives US employees the option of taking as long as four months paid maternity or paternity leave, letting them divide the time as they wish over the course of a year.
Zuckerberg and his doctor wife, Priscilla, revealed in July that they were expecting their first child, a girl, after a series of miscarriages.
Leading streaming music service Spotify last week announced that all full-time employees will have the option to take as long as six months’ parental leave at full pay during the first three years after having children.
Internet giants ramping leave time for parents could put pressure on other firms to do the same to attract talent in a competitive industry.

Mourinho backs Chelsea to subdue red-hot Kane


Mourinho-pis-2-pg-78-11-2-2015
Mourinho
Jose Mourinho is confident his Chelsea defence can nullify the threat of in-form Harry Kane even if John Terry fails to recover in time to face London rivals Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.
Mourinho’s side head to White Hart Lane after keeping two confidence-boosting clean sheets, first in last weekend’s victory over Norwich City and then in the midweek Champions League success at Maccabi Tel Aviv.
Terry limped out of the game in Israel and the Blues captain remains doubtful for the Spurs clash, when Chelsea will attempt to record back-to-back Premier League wins for the first time this season.
A victory in north London will strengthen Mourinho’s belief his side have turned the corner after a disastrous start to the campaign that has left them in 15th position.
Their hopes of gaining revenge for the 5-3 defeat in the corresponding fixture last season will be enhanced if they can prevent Kane from extending a scoring streak that has brought the Tottenham striker nine goals in his last six club games.
And Chelsea manager Mourinho has no doubts a patched up central-defensive pairing of Gary Cahill and Kurt Zouma can keep England international Kane quiet if Terry is unfit.
“I have complete trust in Gary Cahill and Kurt Zouma, which is why in an important match for us on Tuesday I left Kurt out after the good performances he is having to show Gary that confidence. They are ready,” Mourinho said.
“I am not saying Papy Djilobodji is ready because he did not have chances to play and his is a different situation, but Zouma and Cahill are both ready and if John doesn’t play, I go with them.
“I don’t know about John. I don’t want to say that it is impossible he plays because maybe he plays and people will say that I was hiding it and I am not hiding.
“Today he didn’t train but we have a little hope that it is possible.
“Ramires is the same situation as John, I don’t know, let’s wait and see. He has a chance.”
– Unfair –
Mauricio Pochettino’s Tottenham are unbeaten in the league since their opening-day defeat at Manchester United and come into the game on the back of a 1-0 Europa League win over Qarabag on Thursday.
The effects of making a long journey to Azerbaijan have caused concern for Pochettino, who claims it is unfair Chelsea could take advantage of their extra two days rest.
But left-back Danny Rose remains confident Spurs can build on last weekend’s 4-1 victory against West Ham United.
“It needs to be the same again from us. Obviously Chelsea have had a difficult run but that doesn’t make them a bad team,” Rose said.
“They’ve got a world-class squad, a world-class manager and it’s a derby, so form goes out of the window.
“It’s going to be a difficult game but we just hope that we can perform and give the same energy and commitment as we did against West Ham. If we do that, it will be a difficult game for them.
“From our side, we’ve got a great sense of belief inside the changing room and inside the club, so as long as we keep doing what the head coach asks then we know we’ll be in for an exciting season.”

Tanzanian officials jailed for lateness


jail2Six government officials in Tanzania were jailed this week after turning up late for a meeting, reports said Friday, amid a government campaign to tighten standards and tackle corruption.
“The officials spent six hours in custody following the order by the district commissioner,” the Uhuru newspaper reported Friday, in an editorial praising the move.
“They showed up two hours earlier on the following day,” it added.
The local government official in a suburb of the main city Dar es Salaam ordered his six colleagues be locked up after they turned up over three hours late for a meeting he had called at 8:00 am about land disputes.
The commissioner reportedly said the tardiness of the public servants was “irresponsible.”
Tanzania’s President John Magufuli earlier this month ordered government officials to solve a string of problems that the people face including thousands of land disputes, which often are compounded by corrupt officials.
Earlier this week, Magufuli scrapped independence day celebrations to spend the money on a clean-up campaign as Tanzania struggles with an outbreak of cholera.
“It is so shameful that we are spending huge amounts of money to celebrate 54 years of independence when our people are dying of cholera,” Magufuli said in a statement read on state television on Monday.
Magufuli, who took power earlier this month after winning October 25 elections, has introduced a swathe of austerity cuts and crackdowns on public corruption.

Pope honours Ugandan martyrs on Africa tour


Pope Francis
Pope Francis
Vast crowds of Ugandans greeted Pope Francis on Saturday as he honoured Christians martyred for the faith on the second leg of a landmark trip to Africa, which he dubbed “the continent of hope”.
The 78-year-old pontiff received a rapturous welcome as he arrived at a shrine to the martyrs at Namugongo, just outside the capital Kampala, where some 45 Christians were executed in 1886 for refusing to recant their faith.
Wild cheers and singing broke out as Francis arrived at the open air shrine. Over 100,000 people had waited from before dawn to attend the mass, a key highlight of his visit to Uganda.
Later, he will meet with young Ugandans at a huge ceremonial ground in the capital’s Kololo district.
Catholic faithful from neighbouring war-torn South Sudan also came for the mass, travelling for 12 hours by bus to catch a glimpse of the Argentine pope, who has made humility and help for the poor a hallmark of his tenure.
Despite the hot and muggy weather, Jonathon Ssali said he had managed to sell about 55 souvenir scarves during the morning, each one emblazoned with the pope’s image alongside the red, black and yellow of the Ugandan flag.
“This is helping me make a little money,” said the 21-year-old, who came up with the idea of selling the souvenirs, each costing 10,000 Ugandan shillings ($3/2.80 euros), in June.
“I’m excited, it’s my first time to see a pope. When Pope John Paul II visited in 1993, I was just about to be born,” said Ssali, who is Protestant.
“I want to hear his powerful words of unity and compassion,” said 37-year-old Anthony Beda from South Sudan, wearing a pope badge and waving a flag with the pontiff’s face on it.
“If there’s one country he should visit, it’s South Sudan,” Beda told AFP, saying it could help stop the civil war there. “There’s a lot of corruption and conflict there. I would love him to go… It would be a blessing.”
– ‘Continent of hope’ –
Francis, who railed against corruption and wealthy minorities who hoard resources at the expense of the poor during his three days in Kenya, struck a more optimistic tone in Uganda since arriving in the neighbouring east African nation late Friday.
In his opening speech, Francis said his visit was “meant to draw attention to Africa as a whole: its promise, its hopes, its struggles and its achievements,” saying: “The world looks to Africa as the continent of hope.”
Travelling from the airport, he chose to ride in a small hatchback car as waving crowds thronged the roadside.
Veteran Ugandan leader Yoweri Museveni, widely expected to be re-elected next year and embark on his third decade in power, said he was honoured to host Pope Francis, describing the pontiff’s compassion for the poor and his frankness of spirit as “an encouragement for all of us”.
Security has been ratcheted up for the papal visit over fears that Islamist rebels from Al-Qaeda’s East Africa branch, the Shebab, could use the opportunity to stage attacks.
But defence chief Katumba Wamala has said measures are in place and expressed confidence that “all will go as planned.”
Francis has shrugged off safety fears, joking that he was “more worried about the mosquitoes”. He travels to war-torn Central African Republic on Sunday, his final destination before returning to Rome.
On the eve of his arrival, Ugandan MPs passed a controversial bill handing the authorities sweeping powers to supervise, approve, inspect and dissolve NGOs in a move that could see rights activists jailed for documenting abuses.
Rights groups say the move is likely to “strangle” criticism of the government.
He also delivered a hard-hitting address on corruption and radicalisation, as well as a stark environmental message, warning it would be “catastrophic” if agreement is not reached at a key UN climate summit which opens in Paris on Monday.

Philippines goes supersonic again with S. Korean fighter jets


philippinesThe Philippines took delivery of two South Korean-made FA-50 aircraft on Saturday, marking the country’s return to supersonic fighter jet status after almost a decade, amid growing tensions with China.
The two new aircraft are the first of an order of 12 and signal a new readiness by Manila to assert itself militarily.
The two fighters, flown from Seoul by South Korean pilots, were met in Philippine airspace by two S211 jets which escorted them to the former US airbase of Clark where they were received by Defence Secretary Voltaire Gazmin.
“We’re glad. We are finally back to the supersonic age,” he told reporters as he inspected the “Golden Eagle” jets.
Gazmin has said the aircraft could serve as both trainers and fighters, and that among the areas they would be posted will be the western island of Palawan, the country’s closest point to the South China Sea where the Philippines has a territorial dispute with China.
China claims most of the South China Sea even up to the coastline of its neighbours. Other countries have conflicting claims and the Philippines has been the most vocal in opposing China despite its overwhelming military superiority.
The cash-strapped Philippines, which is also battling internal communist and Muslim insurgencies, has long neglected external defence, relying on ageing ships and aircraft to patrol the disputed waters.
It retired the last of its supersonic fighter jets, US-made F-5 Freedom Fighters, in 2005 due to their age and since then has relied on propeller-driven planes and the Italian-made S211.
The S211s are intended for training new pilots and are not capable of supersonic flight. But the military has been forced to use them for other roles such as patrolling territory and conducting bombing missions on insurgents.
However, as the country’s economy improved, Philippine President Benigno Aquino has been upgrading the military, acquiring two surplus frigates from the United States and new aircraft from different sources.

Protests as France’s Hollande calls on UK to join Syria campaign



302px-François_Hollande_(Journées_de_Nantes_2012)French President Francois Hollande has urged British MPs to back an air campaign against the Islamic State group in Syria, as thousands prepared to march on London Saturday to oppose the plans.
Hollande made the appeal after a tribute to the 130 victims of the Paris attacks, during which he vowed to destroy the “army of fanatics” behind the violence that rocked the French capital two weeks ago.
“On November 13, a day we will never forget, France was hit at its very heart,” Hollande told a sombre commemoration in the Invalides, the 17th-century complex housing Napoleon’s tomb on Friday.
“To all of you, I solemnly promise that France will do everything to destroy the army of fanatics that committed these crimes,” he said.
Speaking later at the Commonwealth summit in Malta, where he flew after the ceremonies in Paris, Hollande called on British lawmakers to support France’s intervention in Syria.
“I can only call on all British members of parliament, in solidarity with France but, above all, conscious of the fight against terrorism, to approve this intervention,” he said.
Hollande has already been backed by Germany, which has offered Tornado reconnaissance jets, a naval frigate, and 650 soldiers to relieve French forces in Mali.
– Memories of Iraq –
British Prime Minister David Cameron made his case for air strikes to parliament on Thursday ahead of a vote expected next week.
But many MPs are still troubled by the memory of unpopular British interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan under then Labour prime minister Tony Blair.
The Stop the War Coalition — which also led demonstrations against British intervention in Iraq — has organised a major rally in London to protest the move, with thousands expected to march on Downing Street on Saturday afternoon.
“We are calling on all our groups to organise protests in their towns and cities on the same day. We need to resist this brutalising and dehumanising spiral of violence,” the group said on a Facebook page to advertise the event.
Spanish activists also called for peace protests on Saturday, with the country still scarred from extremist attacks following its involvement in the Iraq war.
The 2004 attacks saw Al-Qaeda-inspired bombers blow up four packed commuter trains and kill 191 people in retaliation for then prime minister Jose Maria Aznar’s decision to join the US-led Iraq invasion.
Leading personalities, including Barcelona Mayor Ada Colau and Pilar Manjon, head of an association for victims of Madrid’s attacks, have called for nationwide peace protests to denounce the use of further force.
Their online manifesto has been signed by more than 28,000 people and demonstrations are planned in Madrid, Barcelona, Seville and Valencia and other locations.
France has said that all 27 of its EU partners have pledged to help in some way to strike at the Islamic State group, but Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has so far remained evasive on the issue.
The Paris attacks — claimed in response for French air strikes on the jihadists in Iraq and Syria — inflicted the worst-ever toll on French soil, leaving 130 dead and 350 wounded. Most victims were under 35.

Gunman kills three at US family planning center


us-shootingA gunman opened fire at a prominent family planning center in Colorado, killing three people and wounding several in a standoff that dragged on for five hours before he surrendered Friday.
An usually busy area of snow-covered Colorado Springs was placed on lockdown into the early evening, just one day after millions of Americans celebrated the Thanksgiving holiday, in the latest incident to shine a spotlight on gun violence in the United States.
Mayor John Suthers paid tribute to police for hauling in the gunman without further bloodshed at the Planned Parenthood building, where people scrambled into a “safe room” for cover.
A police officer was among the dead, he said, while nine others — among them five police — were wounded, though none seriously.
“While this was a terrible, terrible tragedy, it could have been much worse if not for the reactions of first responders,” Sutter told reporters.
The dead policeman was identified as Garrett Swasey, 44, a campus officer at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs who had raced to the scene of the shooting.
Officials later identified the suspect as 57-year old Robert Lewis Dear of South Carolina, local media including The Denver Post reported.
It was unclear whether Planned Parenthood — a major women’s health and family planning group — was the shooter’s target.
Abortion is one of the services Planned Parenthood provides for women, and the association has become a lightning rod for criticism by social conservatives.
Those critics, many of whom seek to outlaw abortion in the United States, have falsely accused Planned Parenthood of selling fetal organs and body parts for profit, and encouraging women to have abortions in order to expand such operations.
Vicki Cowart, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Rocky Mountains, said she did not believe the center had been specifically targeted.
“We’re very pleased that our own security systems were operating at top-notch,” she added.
That included people rushing into the safe room.
“Some got out early throughout the afternoon, but those that didn’t were in a safe spot,” Cowart told CNN, adding that her initial information was that none of her staff or patients had been killed or injured.
– ‘Heroism’ –
The national Planned Parenthood office praised “the brave law enforcement officers who put themselves in harm’s way” in the incident.
“We are profoundly grateful for their heroism in helping to protect all women, men and young people as they access basic health care in this country,” the statement read.
Local media said that extra police were sent to protect the three other Planned Parenthood clinics in the Denver area.
Police initially feared that Dear might have brought explosives, and officers carefully combed the crime scene after the gunman surrendered.
Several people were inside the clinic at the time of the shooting on what had been a regular work day.
When the gunman opened fire, terrified people fled the building and into the cold, some crying and pleading for help.
The immediate area around the clinic was placed on lockdown and people were told to stay indoors.
A sheriff’s department SWAT team with at least one armored vehicle rushed to the scene.
Buckley said the shooter was armed with some kind of “long weapon” with a shoulder stock such as a rifle, and some witnesses reported hearing automatic fire.
– ‘Black Friday’ shopping crowds –
Quan Hoang, the owner of a nearby nail salon, told CNN that when he heard the gunfire he feared a robbery was under way at a bank in the shopping area, which would have been bustling with people looking for Black Friday sales bargains the day after Thanksgiving.
“And we see cops, SWAT, the bomb squad, a whole bunch of people just trying to take cover around the Planned Parenthood area,” he said by telephone.
“An officer came back in and said, ‘Is everyone safe?’ We asked him questions and he said they’ve barricaded him inside the Planned Parenthood and he was shooting out from the windows.”
A White House official said that President Barack Obama had been notified of the incident by his Homeland Security Advisor Lisa Monaco.

Queen wraps up nostalgic Malta visit with boat trip

PHOTO: www.forbes.com
PHOTO: www.forbes.com
Queen Elizabeth II prepared for an action-packed final day of a state visit to Malta on Saturday, including a picturesque boat trip around the Mediterranean island she once called home.
The 89-year-old monarch, who arrived Thursday for a three-day visit, will first of all roll up her sleeves to plant a tree in the grounds of the presidential San Anton palace, an exotic oasis in the heart of the country.
The gharghar sapling — a small cypress which is Malta’s national tree — will be the first of its kind in the palace’s private gardens and will grow next to an olive tree planted 10 years ago by the queen during her last state visit in 2005.
The monarch lived in Malta between 1949 and 1951 as a princess with her new husband Prince Philip, who was stationed on the island as a Royal Navy officer.
It was reportedly the happiest time of their lives and the pair have returned several times over the years — most recently in 2007 to celebrate their diamond wedding anniversary.
The couple will visit the Heritage Malta centre which conserves the country’s historical sites, including temples dating back over 5,000 years which folklore has it were built by giants.
The centre, where the national art collection is also preserved and restored, is housed in the former Bighi Hospital, a major navy infirmary that served a vast area from 1832 until 1970, giving Malta the nickname “The Nurse of the Mediterranean”.
The hospital tended to casualties of the first and second world wars, and the then-princess paid tribute to their service in 1949, visiting patients here on Christmas Eve.
– Racing sulkies –
It was a hugely independent time for the future queen, who used to beetle around the island in her own car.
She also took to the waves in a Maltese traditional taxi boat — a dghajsa — commissioned by the Royal Navy to ferry her around. And she will be hopping back in one later Saturday.
Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip will do a tour of Valletta’s harbour in a dghajsa built in 1954, sailing in front of Britain’s HMS Bulwark assault ship as a 21-gun royal salute rings across the bay.
The cannons will fire from the Barrakka gardens on the sea front, where the princess, then in her early 20s, used to come and wave in the navy fleet.
The crew of the British ship — which has played a significant part in rescuing boat refugees in the Mediterranean — will perform a royal salute as the sovereign sails past.
The horse-loving monarch will spend her last hours here at the Marsa racecourse, where she reportedly used to come to ride but also to dance the night away at an on-site club.
The racecourse and polo club was founded in 1868 by naval officers and dedicated to flat racing until 1940, when racing in sulkies was introduced and took the public by storm.
The queen is likely to have wiled away many a happy Saturday afternoon cheering on sulkies — light two-wheeled, single-driver horse-drawn carts used chiefly in trotting races.
The royals will view trotting races and the final chukka of a polo match at the club — the second oldest polo club in the world — before awarding prizes to the victors.
They will then set off for the airport in cars from the 1950s — Austin Princesses with leather seats and walnut wood interiors — in a final nod to a bygone age of liberty.

How To Write Mobile-first CSS

Building responsive websites is a must-have skill for front-end developers today. When we speak about responsive websites, the term mobile-first pops into mind immediately.
We know the importance of designing from a mobile-first perspective. Unfortunately, much less was said about coding from a mobile-first approach.
Today, I’d like to share with you about the mobile-first approach to styling, why it is much better, and how to work its magic.
Note: This article will be immensely helpful if you are learning to build responsive layouts with Susy.

What are Mobile-first and Desktop-first approaches?

Let’s understand the differences between mobile-first and desktop-first before we dive into why the mobile-first approach is better.
A mobile-first approach to styling means that styles are applied first to mobile devices. Advanced styles and other overrides for larger screens are then added into the stylesheet via media queries.
This approach uses min-width media queries.
Here’s a quick example:
// This applies from 0px to 600px 
body { 
  background: red; 
}

// This applies from 600px onwards 
@media (min-width: 600px) {
  body { 
    background: green; 
  }
}
In the example above, <body> will have a red background below 600px. Its background changes to green at 600px and beyond.
On the flipside, a desktop-first approach to styling means that styles are applied first to desktop devices. Advanced styles and overrides for smaller screens are then added into the stylesheet via media queries.
This approach uses max-width media queries.
Here’s a quick example:
// This applies from 600px onwards
body { 
  background: green; 
}

// This applies from 0px to 600px
@media (max-width: 600px) {
  body { 
    background: red; 
  }
}
<body> will have a background colour of green for all widths. If the screen goes below 600px, the background colour becomes red instead.

Why Code Mobile-first?

Code for larger screens is usually more complicated than the codes for smaller screens. This is why coding mobile first helps simplify your code.
Consider a situation where you have a content-sidebar layout for a website. .content takes up a 100% width on mobile, and 66% on the desktop.

Most of the time, we can rely on default properties to style content for smaller screens. In this case, a <div> has a width of 100% by default.
If we work with the mobile-first approach, the Sass code will be:
.content {
  // Properties for smaller screens. 
  // Nothing is required here because we can use the default styles 

  // Properties for larger screens
  @media (min-width: 800px) {
    float: left; 
    width: 60%; 
  }
}
If we go with the desktop-first approach instead, we will have to restore the default properties for smaller viewports most of the time. The Sass code for the same result is:
.content {
  // Properties for larger screens.
  float: left; 
  width: 60%; 

  // Properties for smaller screens. 
  // Note that we have to write two default properties to make the layout work
  @media (max-width: 800px) {
    float: none; 
    width: 100%; 
  }
}
With this one example, we save two lines of code and a few seconds of mind-bending CSS. Imagine how much time and effort this will save you if you worked on a larger site.
Most of the time min-width queries would be enough to help you code a website. There are however instances where a combination of both min-width and max-width queries helps to reduce complications that pure min-width queries cannot hope to achieve.
Let’s explore some of these instances.

Using Max-width Queries With A Mobile-First Approach

Max-width queries come into play when you want styles to be constrained below a certain viewport size. A combination of both min-width and max-width media queries will help to constrain the styles between two different viewport sizes.
Consider a case of a gallery of thumbnails. This gallery has 3 thumbnails in a row on a smaller viewport and 4 items in a row on a larger viewport.

Since there are no spaces between each item, its simple:
.gallery__item {
  float: left; 
  width: 33.33%; 
  @media (min-width: 800px) {
    width: 25%; 
  }
}
It gets slightly complicated if there are empty spaces within each item.

Say these spaces each take up 5% of the width:
.gallery__item {
  float: left; 
  width: 30.333%;
  margin-right 5%;
  margin-bottom: 5%;
}
We will also have to give the final (3rd item) on the row amargin-right of 0 to make sure it doesn’t get pushed down into the next column.
.gallery__item {
  float: left; 
  width: 30.333%;
  margin-right 5%;
  margin-bottom: 5%;
  &:nth-child(3n) {
    margin-right: 0; 
  }
}
This code must also work for the case where there are four items in the row. If we go according to the min-width query we had above…
.gallery__item {
  float: left; 
  width: 30.333%;
  margin-right 5%;
  margin-bottom: 5%;
  &:nth-child(3n) {
    margin-right: 0; 
  }

  @media (min-width: 800px) {
    width: 21.25%; // (100% - 15%) / 4
    &:nth-child (4n) {
      margin-right: 0; 
    }
  }
}

This doesn’t work properly because we specified that every 3rd item should have a margin-right of 0px. This property gets cascaded towards a larger viewport and breaks the pattern we wanted.
We can fix it by resetting the margin-right property of every 3rd item to 5%:
.gallery__item {
  // ...
  @media (min-width: 800px) {
    // ...
    &:nth-child (3n) {
      margin-right: 5%; 
    }
    &:nth-child(4n) {
      margin-right: 0%;
    }
  }
}
This isn’t a very nice approach since we are going to repeat the 5% margin-right property if we have to change the number of items on a larger viewport.
We should keep the code as DRY as possible.
A better way is to constrain nth-child(3n) selector within its rightful viewport by using a max-width query.
.gallery__item {
  float: left; 
  margin-right: 5%;
  margin-bottom: 5%;
  @media (max-width: 800px) {
    width: 30.333%;
    &:nth-child(3n) {
      margin-right: 0; 
    }  
  }

  @media (min-width: 800px) {
    width: 21.25%; // (100% - 15%) / 4
    &:nth-child (4n) {
      margin-right: 0; 
    }
  }
}

This works because the max-width property limits the selectors to below 800px and the styles given within will not affect styles for any other viewports.
Now imagine if you have a larger viewport and you wanted to show 5 items per row in the gallery. This is when a combination of min and max-width queries come together.
.gallery__item {
  float: left; 
  margin-right: 5%;
  margin-bottom: 5%;
  @media (max-width: 800px) {
    width: 30.333%;

    &:nth-child(3n) {
      margin-right: 0; 
    }  
  }

  // combining both min-width and max-width queries 
  @media (min-width: 800px) and (max-width: 1200px) {
    width: 21.25%; // (100% - 15%) / 4
    &:nth-child (4n) {
      margin-right: 0; 
    }
  }

  @media (min-width: 1200px){
    width: 16%; // (100% - 20%) / 5
    &:nth-child (5n) {
      margin-right: 0; 
    }
  }
}

A Video!

The guys over at Webucator were extremely kind and volunteered to create a video to summarize this blog post. So if video are your thing, do check this out.

Conclusion

Min-width media queries are extremely helpful when it comes to coding responsive websites because it reduces code complexity. Min-width queries are, however, not the solution to every problem as you can see from the examples above. It can sometimes be beneficial to add max-width queries into your stylesheet to help keep things DRYer.