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Did You Know?

Israel engineers are behind the development of the largest communications router in the world, launched by Cisco.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

World’s First Shipping Container Bridge Over Tel Aviv’s Trash Mountain


A new bridge called ECOtainer made from recycled shipping containers will render “trash mountain” unrecognizable to residents of Tel Aviv. The Hiriya landfill just outside of Tel Aviv shut down in 1998 after becoming the repository for 25 million tons of waste. More mountain than landfill, Hiriya has since been transformed into one of the world’s most successful reclamation projects.

Already the methane emitted from Hiriya is harvested to power a nearby factory and the surrounding area is being converted into an urban park that is safe for a variety of outdoor recreational activities. Now Yosef Messer Architects have won the Econtainer Bridge Competition, which may result in the construction of a bridge made of recycled shipping containers linking Arial Sharon Park with the main thoroughfare leading to Tel Aviv.
Each year, 800,000 maritime shipping containers are spit out into the world with nowhere to go. As a result, resourceful designers have frequently incorporated the into art and design projects. They are used for pop-up shops, for temporary restaurants, mobile eco-lodging and all sorts of other creative uses.
But to our knowledge, Yosef Messer Architects is the first to propose utilizing them as the main construction material in a 160 meter bridge.
The Israeli firm places great emphasis on reusing existing materials in order to reduce waste and on fast, efficient and inexpensive construction.
About 70 percent of the ECOtainer bridge will be constructed in a factory, which goes a long way to reducing site damage, and wooden platforms will create a path through the shipping containers, which will comprise the project’s “skeleton,” according to the design team.
Both a passageway for cyclists, pedestrians and light vehicles, the Econtainer Bridge will also be a destination in itself. Benches will be available on either edge, and rooftop platforms will frame panoramic views of southern Tel Aviv.
Photovoltaic panel louvers will serve the dual purpose of creating shading and generating energy for lighting so that the bridge will be completely self-sufficient.
Additional louvers will be included to ensure that the shipping containers, which are made of steel, won’t bake park visitors during the summer months.
Of different shapes and sizes, the recycled containers offer a variety of volumetric options, giving the client a great deal of design flexibility. And most of all, this extraordinary project, if it gets off the ground so to speak, will become a fabulous teaching tool.
Already Hiriya offers tours to people interested in urban reclamation and improved waste management, but a bridge constructed with recycled shipping containers sets a whole new precedent in a country that consistently breaksground in water conservation, wildlife management, clean technology and green architecture.
It has our vote of confidence.
Source: GreenProphet
Green Bridge

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Planned Ashdod Mini-Golf Park - New Page for Miniature Golf in Israel?

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Chief of the Air Staff of the Indian Armed Forces Arrives in Israel

IDF Welcomes Head of Indian Air Force

IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz greets the head of the Indian Air Force, Air Chief Marshal NAK Browne, at IDF HQ.

The Chief of the Air Staff and Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee of the Indian Armed Forces, Air Chief Marshal Norman Anil Kumar Browne, arrived yesterday, Saturday, January 19, 2013, for his first visit to Israel in his current position. He will be hosted by the Commander of the Israel Air Force, Major General Amir Eshel. Air Chief Marshal Browne previously served as the first Defense Attaché of India to Israel, between 1997 to 2000, where he set up the defense wing in the Indian embassy.

 Air Chief Marshal Browne will be received in Camp Rabin (Kirya) by an IDF honor guard consisting of soldiers from the ground, air and naval forces, to the sounds of the national anthems of Israel and the Republic of India.
During the course of his visit, Air Chief Marshal Browne will conduct meetings with the Chief of the General Staff, Lieutenant General Benjamin “Benny” Gantz, as well as with the Commander of the IAF, Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel, which will focus on cooperation between the two militaries. Air Chief Marshal Browne will also meet with the Minister of Defense, Mr. Ehud Barak.
Air Chief Marshal Browne will visit IAF bases and squadrons, where he will be briefed on the operational procedures of the IAF. He will also visit theYad VaShem Holocaust Memorial Museum, where he will lay a wreath in memory of those who perished in the Holocaust.

Israel joins UN’s Kiev Protocol


Environmental Protection Ministry commits to following UN protocol on air pollution; pledges to grant public access to transparent emissions data

Israel has joined the UN’s Kiev Protocol on air pollution, the Environmental Protection Ministry said.
The Kiev Protocol, also known as the Protocol on Pollutant Release and Transfer Registers (PRTR), was introduced and enacted in 2003.
The environmental treaty aims “To enhance public access to information through the establishment of coherent, nationwide pollutant release and transfer registers.”
According to the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), it is the first legally binding international tool to that effect.
The Kiev Protocol demands that government exercise freedom of information and transparency regarding emissions data.
By requiring transparency, instead of regulating emissions output, the protocol’s effectiveness hinges on the idea that companies will want to avoid the stigma of being large polluters.
The protocol will enter into force in Israel on April 14, according to UN spokesman Farhan Haq.
“The secretary-general appreciates all ratifications and accessions to the treaties deposited with him, including the Kiev Protocol,” he said.
By signing the environmental treaty, Israel will be joining 36 countries, in addition to the European Union, which have individually signed the protocol.
Kiev Protocol members so far include: Armenia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Moldova, Romania, Serbia, Montenegro Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Macedonia, Ukraine and the United Kingdom.
Israel is the second country in the Middle East, after Cyprus, to join the protocol. The decision also coincides with Israel’s duties as an OECD member.

UWO musician goes viral after his remix was used in Israeli Soccer Commercial

UWO music

Gareth Bush, a fourth year Criminology student at King’s University College, doubles as a musician & is going viral after being in an Israeli commercial

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Amazing footage – Ray Charles and Ben Gurion

Ray Charles

Pretty awesome video of former Israeli PM Ben Gurion and American Singer Ray Charles

Israeli artist DJ ARON makes the cover of Chicago’s boiMAG

Israeli DJs are building quote the reputation for themselves, check out an article about Israel own, DJ Aron

DJ Aron

JNF: Tu Bishvat sees record tree planting


Jewish National Fund said over 600,000 new trees planted over holiday weekend; expects week-long events to see a million more new saplings

The Jewish National Fund reported that a new record has been set this Tu Bishvat, as over 600,000 new trees were planted over the holiday weekend.
According to JNF World Chairman Efi Stenzle, this year’s Tu Bishvat (Israel’s Arbor Day) events, which span the entire week, will see over a million new saplings planted in forests and parks nationwide.
Over 260 cities, towns and communities participated in the JNF’s annual planting event Saturday, as hundreds of thousands of Israelis used the sunny day and came out in droves to celebrate the trees’ annual holiday.
According to Stenzle, 2013′s Tu Bishvat’s planting venture will set a new record.
“We want to thank the hundreds of thousands of people who came out today and took part in Tu Bishvat’s events in Israel,” he said.
Israel, he added, “Is the only country in the world to have more trees in the 21st century than in the previous one… We’re creating a green lung that will benefit all of us.”

VIDEO + PICTURES: The aerial antics of Israel’s starlings

After 20 years, these birds have been sighted in Israel over the last year, particularly at dusk when the flocks begin their spectacular aerobatic display before retiring for the night.

Israel Starling
Israel Starling
Israel Starling
Israel Starling

A flock of Starlings, after seeing a White Falcon, Dudaim landfill, southern Israel - Amazing
להקת זרזירים (אלפי פריטים) לאחר שראתה בז לבן, אתר הדודאים, נגב

FESTIVAL: Bob Marley music festival in honor of the singer’s birthday

Bob Marley Festival

In honor of Bob Marley’s birthday next week, Israel’s celebrating with its very own Bob Marley Festival on Feb 7 & 9 at Tel Aviv’s Barby Club (a tradition that is 8 years running). This year, the two-day musical event will feature a number of Israel’s hottest musical acts covering his greatest hits, including Karolina, Balkan Beat Box’s Tomer Yosef, Mercedes Band, Hope 6, Zebulon Dove, Malka Baya, J. Hughes, Return to Zion and Cosmo.

Source: TimeOUT Israel

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Israeli Husband-and-Wife chefs open popular London eatery

Honey and Co

Honey & Co. brings Middle East fare to British palates, winning rave reviews from food critics.

They met 10 years ago while working together in an Italian restaurant in Herzliya. Last summer, accomplished husband-and-wife chefs Itamar Srulovich and Sarit Packer took the plunge of opening their own 25-seat restaurant in a fashionable residential district of London.
Honey & Co. is already creating a buzz among British foodies.
“The food here is stunning, alive with colour and texture,” gushed one critic. “This little Israeli-run café and takeaway only has a few seats, but they’re the most sought-after in Fitzrovia,” revealed another. “The cakes, enticingly displayed in the window, are true eye-candy.”
The self-taught Srulovich tells ISRAEL21c: “Desserts are the thing we are most proud of. Our cakes are sensational. My wife is a pastry genius — one of the best pastry chefs in the world.”
Before opening Honey & Co. with her husband, Packer was a pastry chef for the famed Israeli restaurateur Yotam Ottolenghi, and executive chef at one of his four successful London eateries. Everything at Honey & Co., from the breads to the jams, is made on premises from scratch.

Jerusalem Design Week

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Man’s surname can be guessed through DNA, Israeli researchers discover


Israeli and American geneticists have developed a method that can help people find family members around the world – so spy agencies will be interested too.

A male’s genome contains information that can help scientists guess his surname, American and Israeli researchers have discovered. The findings have serious implications for data privacy; intelligence services around the world are bound to be interested.
In the study published in the journal Science, researchers have developed a formula for an algorithm that can discover men’s surnames by looking at the Y chromosome, the male chromosome. The Y chromosome, which is transmitted from father to son from generation to generation, includes markers called short tandem repeats, which form a kind of fingerprint.
The researchers, headed by Dr. Yaniv Erlich of the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts, fed 40 markers into a computer and compared them to Y-chromosome sequences on websites. In the United States, there are companies that show people’s genome sequences derived from saliva samples; this makes it possible to determine a person’s origins and locate relatives around the world.
“Even though there isn’t a unified database of all genetic sequences on the Internet, comparing a subject’s Y chromosome with information from existing databases could help locate his family,” says Israeli team member Eran Halperin, a professor at Tel Aviv University’s Department of Molecular Microbiology and Biotechnology.
In addition to the Whitehead Institute, the research was carried out by experts at Harvard, MIT and the International Computer Science Institute in Berkeley, California.
The researchers and doctoral student David Golan of Tel Aviv University’s statistics department developed the formula for the algorithm, which was tested on 911 men in the United States. The numbers were compared to Internet databases containing genetic sequences of 135,000 men with the most common surnames in the United States, most of them of European origin. The algorithm identified the surname 12 percent of the time, a success rate it later boosted to 18 percent.
The researchers, for example, applied the algorithm to the genome sequence of American geneticist Craig Venter, the head of a research institute in San Diego who was one of the first to sequence the human genome.
In the U.S.-Israeli experiment, the algorithm identified the Venter surname, and after crossing the data with other discoveries, figured out his age. Knowing that he lives in California, the researchers showed that only one other person in the state shares the unique spots on his chromosomes.
The researchers also scanned Y chromosomes of 10 residents of Utah, without knowing their last names; the algorithm helped them figure out the surnames of five of them, all of them Mormons.
“The identification technique could have a number of useful applications such as locating relatives and identifying corpses in natural disasters,” says Halperin. “But the research also reveals a fundamental problem: If a person publishes his genome on the Internet, even when this is done anonymously, his identity is pretty much exposed.”
Halperin adds that the ability to find a surname is based only on the Y chromosome, one of the body’s 46 chromosomes. The study also raises questions about sharing genetic information from various sources.
“We take a positive view of sharing genetic information on public databases – with permission, of course,” says Halperin. “Sharing information is essential to science, and there are many advantages to users of these services. But it’s important that all organizations involved in the data sharing be aware of the possible exposure and weigh their decisions accordingly.”
Erlich adds: “The obvious conclusion from the study is that biometrics can produce unexpected situations. We believe legislators must proceed with great caution when they plan such databases.”

Remembering Prof. Rita Levi - Montalcini - Nobel Laureate Chemistry - On Technion Visit

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In March 2008, shortly before her 99th birthday, Levi-Montalcini visitedTechnion. She came with a delegation from the Italian National Academy of Sciences as a show of support for Israel, at a time when Europe called for a boycott on Israeli scientists. Montalcini-Levi never married nor had any children. She died at home on December 30, 2012, aged 103. At a Rome event in May 2007, Technion venerated this great Italian scientist for her groundbreaking achievements in science and service to humanity.

Rita Levi-Montalcini was born on April 22, 1909, in Turin, Italy. She went to medical school and graduated summa cum laude in 1936. In 1947, an invitation from Prof. Viktor Hamburger to join his lab in St. Louis. She accepted and stayed on at Washington University, becoming a full professor in 1958. In 1962, she helped establish the Institute of Cell Biology in Rome and became its first director.
Neurologist Levi-Montalcini received the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1986, together with biochemist Prof. Stanley Cohen, for their discovery of nerve growth factor (NGF). In 2001, Italy recognized her as a senator for life; Levi-Montalcini regularly attended Senate. She remained active in her laboratory and in developing research in Italy.

OECD pleased with Israel’s waste, chemicals policies


Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development says Israel successfully implementing its policies on waste, chemicals management

srael has received positive feedback from the OECD’s Chemicals Committee and its Working Party on Chemicals Pesticides and Biotechnology regarding its implementation of the organization’s policies in these fields.
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s periodic assessment found that Israel’s compliance with its obligations in the areas of chemicals and waste management were successful and satisfactory, the Environmental Protection Ministry said on its website.
A delegation from the Israeli ministry presented the OECD’s committee with the steps Israel has taken in order to meet its commitments to the OECD.
Israel’s has noted several accomplishments since joining the OECD in 2010, including establishing a mechanism for managing and registering industrial chemicals, establishing the Pollutant Release and Transfer Register mechanism to keep track of chemicals emissions, and implementation of Integrated Pollution Prevention Control policies.
Israel also made significant progress in the comprehensive management of waste via legislation, waste reduction at source, the separation of different waste streams, recycling and reducing landfill; as well as management of facilities for waste and for recycling.
The OECD committee recognized Israel’s earnest commitment and efforts in these matters, saying that it had achieved a great deal in the two years reviewed.
“The committee members, as well as OECD Secretariat representatives, said that they see much improvement in our management of chemicals,” said Romy Even Danan, head of the ministry’s Hazardous Materials Division.
The OECD’s Environmental Policy Committee (EPOC) will meet in February 2013, to discuss Israel’s progress related to other environmental issues, including the use of economic instruments to manage biodiversity, environmental information and indicators.