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14/02/2020 12:49:06  

Benjamin Griveaux condemns a "torrent of mud" after a video is apparently posted by a Russian artist.
05/02/2020 16:50:21  

By exploiting randomness, three mathematicians have proved an elegant law that underlies the chaotic motion of turbulent systems. From a report: Picture a calm river. Now picture a torrent of white water. What is the difference between the two? To mathematicians and physicists it's this: The smooth river flows in one direction, while the torrent flows in many different directions at once. Physical systems with this kind of haphazard motion are called turbulent. The fact that their motion unfolds in so many different ways at once makes them difficult to study mathematically. Generations of mathematicians will likely come and go before researchers are able to describe a roaring river in exact mathematical statements. But a new proof finds that while certain turbulent systems appear unruly, they actually conform to a simple universal law. The work is one of the most rigorous descriptions of turbulence ever to emerge from mathematics. And it arises from a novel set of methods that are themselves changing how researchers study this heretofore untamable phenomenon. "It may well be the most promising approach to turbulence," said Vladimir Sverak, a mathematician at the University of Minnesota and an expert in the study of turbulence. The new work provides a way of describing patterns in moving liquids. These patterns are evident in the rapid temperature variations between nearby points in the ocean and the frenetic, stylized way that white and black paint mix together. In 1959, an Australian mathematician named George Batchelor predicted that these patterns follow an exact, regimented order. The new proof validates the truth of "Batchelor's law," as the prediction came to be known. "We see Batchelor's law all over the place," said Jacob Bedrossian, a mathematician at the University of Maryland, College Park and co-author of the proof with Alex Blumenthal and Samuel Punshon-Smith. "By proving this law, we get a better understanding of just how universal it is."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

05/02/2020 12:51:09  

Royal Opera House, London
The dizzying world of Lewis Carroll is brought to wonderful and touching life, and Gerald Barry’s intense score is marshalled with panache by Thomas Adès

When Alice’s Adventures Under Ground received its European premiere at the Barbican three years ago, it seemed more likely to find a permanent home in the concert hall rather than the opera house. Gerald Barry’s gleeful, picaresque romp through Lewis Carroll’s two Alice books seemed to have produced a work that was more cantata than viable, stageable opera – events and characters almost lifted haphazardly from the texts without much sense of a linear narrative and crammed into a score that lasted a breathless 50 minutes. How could any stage production possibly cope with a piece that zigzagged from one scene to another at such dizzying speed?

Yet Antony McDonald has succeeded in doing just that in a spectacularly successful way. It was McDonald that first released the full operatic potential of Barry’s whirlwind The Importance of Being Earnest with his 2013 production for Northern Ireland Opera, and he applies the same, unfailingly light touch to his staging of Alice for the Royal Opera, with witty designs and pinpoint stagecraft that never seems to put a foot wrong. The speed at which everything happens doesn’t appear to faze him: within seconds of the very start, as the White Rabbit announces his lateness, Alice has tumbled down the rabbit hole with a torrent of coloratura arpeggios, and encountered the all-male chorus of four “Drink me” bottles that swiftly transform into “Eat me” cakes.

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27/01/2020 21:48:57  

Quim Torra will be unable to vote in parliament but will remain head of Catalan government

Catalonia’s parliament has stripped the head of the region’s pro-independence government of his rights as a regional lawmaker, angering supporters who scuffled with police outside the assembly.

The parliament’s speaker, Roger Torrent, said the assembly in Barcelona had to comply with a Spanish court ruling against regional leader Quim Torra to ensure future votes are not deemed invalid, but said he would seek ways to overturn the decision.

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21/01/2020 23:47:41  

  • Former CEO of mining giant Vale among those charged
  • Vale ‘acted directly to create false impression of safety in dams’

Brazilian prosecutors have charged 16 people – including the former CEO of mining giant Vale – with murder and environmental crimes over the collapse of a tailings dam which killed 270 people on 25 January 2019.

The charges were announced by state prosecutors in Minas Gerais days before the first anniversary of the disaster, which sent a torrent of liquid mining waste across the picturesque countryside, flattening Vale’s plant, offices and canteen, and killing guests at a nearby countryside guesthouse.

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17/01/2020 07:47:07  

Is financial malpractice an aberration or built into the system? This is enraging, essential reading

A decade ago the global economy was emerging from the biggest financial crisis in decades. Major financial institutions only survived thanks to a torrent of liquid capital, government deficits ballooned as they tried to manage the fallout, millions of jobs were lost and billions of pounds’ worth of value vanished from global asset prices. It was an epochal disaster, comparable only to its predecessor in 1929, and its effects are still with us. The political convulsions of Donald Trump, Brexit, Viktor Orbán and the gilets jaunes, among other phenomena, can all be seen as aftershocks of this great earthquake, and we are very much not done yet.

We might have expected some serious soul-searching in politics, finance, economics and among the electorate about how this could have come about but, in Britain anyway, precisely the opposite has happened. A good example was one of – for me – the lowlights of last year’s general election campaign, when the chancellor of the exchequer, Sajid Javid, blamed the Labour party for the economic crisis and resulting rise in homelessness.

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12/01/2020 10:46:01  

Fusing landscape, art and architecture, Manrique embraced the island’s rugged volcanic terrain as a canvas to create works that are stunning a new generation of art lovers and tourists

A sea of gnarled black lava spills in through the window of a white cubic house on the island of Lanzarote, tumbling in contorted waves on to the polished concrete floor. A pair of chubby cacti cling to the rocky windowsill, as if swept indoors by the churning torrent of molten basalt outside. It looks as if the building might have been swamped by a volcanic eruption, but this is no natural disaster. It is the work of César Manrique, the celebrated artist-architect of Lanzarote. Harnessing lava formations as other designers use concrete and steel, he conjured spectacular spaces from the caves, bubbles and tunnels left by the primal movements of molten magma.

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06/01/2020 06:44:44  

Surge in processing industry will increase Ireland’s already too high carbon emissions

Inside Digital Realty’s Dublin data centre, racks of shiny black servers throb and whirr as unseen fans cool machines that steadily process unending data.

It operates 24 hours a day from the business park, sited on a former orchard, and the data joins a digital torrent in an underground fibre ring network that sweeps around the Irish capital and connects to undersea cables – the physical backbones of the digital world.

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31/12/2019 00:44:29  

Association of Convenience Stores says cuts feed ‘torrent’ of free-to-use ATM closures

Convenience stores are urging the operator of the UK’s largest cash machine network to scrap further cuts planned to the fees it charges for transactions in an attempt to stem the “torrent” of free-to-use ATM closures.

The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) said previous cuts by Link to the so-called interchange fee – payments made by banks to cash machine operators every time money is withdrawn – led to thousands of free cash machines being closed across the UK.

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