Apples iPad Mini set for launch next week

first_imgTHIS IS THE INVITATION sent around by Apple this evening that all but confirms the launch of its long-awaited iPad Mini next week.The technology giant has distributed press invitations to an event in San Jose, California for October 23 – seven days from today – saying it has “a little more to show you”.The invitations follow months of speculation and rumours that Apple was to bring out a smaller version of its tablet machine.Gizmodo points out that the rumours surrounding the recent launch of the iPhone 5 were particularly accurate – a trend which, if continued, would probably see the iPad Mini fulfil many of the predictions about its specifications.Mashable adds that though Apple launches have historically been shrouded in secrecy – with even the name of the iPad kept under wraps until the device was launched – photographs of the iPhone 5 had been leaked online long before its official launch last month.Both reports suggest that photographs of a smaller iPad with a screen size of about 7.5 inches may turn out to be genuine.Apple co-founder Steve Jobs had famously ridiculed the idea of introducing a device smaller than a traditional 10-inch iPad, but larger than an iPhone – but such devices have become popular in recent times, with offerings from Amazon and Samsung enjoying particular success.Read: Kindle Fire tablet sold out, says AmazonPlus: Website runs ‘smallest penis’ contest… for an iPhonelast_img read more

Is Ireland on the verge of a whiskey revival

first_imgIRELAND’S FIRST PURPOSE built distillery for new whiskey begins distilling in Dingle next month, as established drinks entrepreneurs look to mirror the success of the island’s micro breweries.With Ireland’s three distilleries all owned by American or French drinks giants, entrepreneurs in Derry, Kerry and Louth have or are looking to start selling their own unique whiskeys and blends to capitalise on the growing market for whiskeys worldwide.“There are around 160 distilleries in Scotland” says Oliver Hughes of the Dingle Distillery in Kerry. “In Ireland we have three and that’s it. They are all owned by huge multinationals.”He sees huge opportunities to capitalise on a resurgence in interest in Irish whiskey worldwide, with sales of single malt whiskey in the US increasing by 24 per cent to 1.7 million cases last year, surpassing Scotch single malt for the first time.Ciaran Mulgrew of Niche Drinks in Derry agrees. His company has been making liqueur since the 1980s, but has applied for planning permission for a £15m distilling plant after watching the €73m sale of the Cooley Distillery in Co Louth last year. Jack Teeling, a son of the company’s founder, is now establishing his own brand based on one of Cooley’s whiskeys.“There are a handful of distilleries here and they are all owned by US or French PLCs” he told “There is nothing small or indigenous. That’s going against the trend that we see in beer, where a lot of craft breweries have sprung up in Ireland.”Teeling says the same.25 years ago when the Cooley distillery was set up the industry was in a totally different place. In fact it was dormant. But the Irish climate, while not good for sunning yourself, is ideal for whiskey maturation. It allows for the production of a very smooth whiskey that suits pallets looking for that kind of taste. It also uses Irish water, Irish cereal and Irish expertise, which means it is going to survive globalisation as it has to be made here.However, Ireland still controls a small amount of the worldwide market. Just 3.5 per cent of the world’s whiskey comes from the island, against 60 per cent from Scotland.Up until the 1920s, Derry was the largest whiskey producer in the world, making more whiskey than any other city in the world. Watts was the largest single distiller in the world, with Ireland boasting over 80 distilleries according to Brian Townsend in his book, ‘The Lost Distilleries of Ireland’.Prohibition put an end to much of the trade, with the Scottish industry, coming out on top when the ban on alcohol was lifted in 1933. Scotland distilleries now employ 10,000 people directly and other 35,000 indirectly.According to Hughes, Ireland leaving the Commonwealth also had a major impact, as India was of the biggest markets in the world.A co-founder of the Porter House Brewing company, he says there is huge scope to copy the success of the micro brewery trade with distilleries.“We were at the forefront of craft brewing and in whiskey, we believe there is room for the small man.”Dingle has begun distilling gin and will start producing whiskey next month. Interested drinkers will have to wait three years to taste a drop though, with a five year variety called Founding Fathers Whiskey sitting in casks a little time longer. However, investors and patient drinkers can get in on the game early, with Dingle selling 500 casks of the five year whiskey for about €6500 each.Jameson sales revenues soar by 25 per cent in six months>last_img read more

RTÉs Documentary on One scoops two awards at prestigious ceremony

first_imgRTÉ HAS SCOOPED two awards for its Documentary on One series in Berlin tonight.RTÉ Radio 1′s radio documentary series collected two awards at the Prix Europa 2013, an international public service media competition.It won for Best European Radio Documentary of the Year 2013 with the entry, Documentary on One – Message in a Bottle. This was produced by Peter Mulryan and the series producer of the Documentary on One, Liam O’Brien.It was also awarded a special commendation of second place for Best European Radio Investigation of the Year 2013 with The Echo Chamber: The Story of Jihad Jane, which was produced by Ciaran Cassidy with sound supervision by Mark Dwyer.Lorelei Harris, RTE Radio 1′s Editor of Arts, Features and Drama said she is “absolutely delighted” with these awards. They are of the highest industry standard and I am thrilled that once again the work of the ‘Documentary on One’ team has been recognised for its excellence and outstanding contribution to Irish radio.Entries in the Prix Europa are listened to or viewed in a group, then assessed and evaluated in a public and open debate and with jurors then casting their votes.Sir David Attenborough was also honoured at tonight’s Prix Europa with a Lifetime Achievement Award.Read: Radio documentary on school stand-off wins gold award in New York>last_img read more

Irelands economy forecast to grow 17 per cent in 2014

first_imgTHE EUROPEAN COMMISSION has said that the European economy has reached a turning point.The commission says that the Irish economy will grown by 1,7 per cent in 2014 and 2.5 per cent in 2015.The commission also says unemployment is expected to decrease to 12.3 per cent in 2014 and to 11.7 per cent in 2015.The public budget balance is expected to decrease by -7.4 per cent in 2013, by -5 per cent in 2014 and by -3 per cent in 2015.Gross public debt as a percentage of GDP is expected to decrease from 124.4 per cent in 2013, to 120.8 per cent in 2014 and to 119.1 per cent in 2015.Olli Rehn, Commission Vice-President for Economic and Monetary Affairs and the Euro said that the recovery is fragile and that a complete turn around cannot be declared just yet.“There are increasing signs that the European economy has reached a turning point. The fiscal consolidation and structural reforms undertaken in Europe have created the basis for recovery. But it is too early to declare victory: unemployment remains at unacceptably high levels. That’s why we must continue working to modernise the European economy, for sustainable growth and job creation.”Read: €125m fund to boost small and medium businessesRead: Over 300 new jobs announced for Dublinlast_img read more

Heres What Happened Today Friday

first_imgPat Cox has defended the Limerick City of Culture project amid controversy.Margaret Thatcher considered redrawing the NI border to move Catholics into the Republic.AIB has resolved an issue which meant some customers didn’t receive salaries today.The IDA had its best year for creating jobs in more than a decade.Sinn Féin has told Unionists to make up their mind about the Haass proposals.NAMA raised €5.8 billion in 2013 – the vast majority of it from selling off property.Four more hospitals are to become smoke-free zones.INTERNATIONALRob Ford (Pic: The Canadian Press/Chris Young) #PEACE TALKS: Warring parties in South Sudan have begun negotiations today to end almost three weeks of fierce conflict which has left thousands of people dead and taken the country to the brink of civil war.#GERMANY: One person has died and eight others have been injured after a World War II-era bomb exploded in a town near Bonn in Germany.#OH, CANADA: Mayor of Toronto Rob Ford, who was stripped of most of his powers after admitting he had smoked crack, has launched his bid for re-election – and is already the frontrunner.INNOVATIONAn American lawyer is suing Facebook for allegedly using data from private messages to target ads.One of the biggest gadget shows in the world, the International Consumer Electronics Show, is set to open in Las Vegas with all the new and shiny products for the year ahead. From 3D printing to curved televisions, The Guardian has a run down of what to expect. [The Guardian]PARTING SHOTUnlike so many countries in Europe during World War II, Denmark didn’t just try to save its Jewish population but actively defended them. Were they just better people? Or was it something else? A new book looks to explain how a small country tried to fight back; and Michael Ignatieff has written a review of it published in the New Statesmen which is well worth a read. [New Statesman] Two women in their 20s have died in a house fire in Donegal.Bad weather meant many coastal areas took a battering with flooding and road closures.An Irishman has been jailed in Australia for a car crash which killed two Irish backpackers. NEED TO CATCH up? brings you a round-up of today’s news…Waves crash over the wall in Blackrock. (Pic: Pat Shaughnessy) IRELANDlast_img read more

Pope Francis says the internet is a gift from God

first_imgPOPE FRANCIS HAS described the internet as “a gift from God” and called on Catholics to “boldly become citizens of the digital world”.“The internet… offers immense possibilities for encounter and solidarity. This is something truly good, a gift from God,” the Argentine pontiff said in his first World Communication Day message, given annual by the Pope.“Let us boldly become citizens of the digital world. Let our communication be a balm which relieves pain and a fine wine which gladdens hearts,” he said.The 77-year-old pontiff is a keen Twitter user whose account has attracted more than 10 million followers.But he also makes a point of privileging human relationships and physical touch, often walking among the crowds who flock to see him in St. Peter’s Square and embracing the ill or disabled.“As I have frequently observed, if a choice has to be made between a bruised Church which goes out to the streets and a Church suffering from self-absorption, I certainly prefer the first,” he said.“Those ‘streets’ are the world where people live and where they can be reached, both effectively and affectively. The digital highway is one of them, a street teeming with people who are often hurting, men and women looking for salvation or hope,” he added.However, Francis warned people not allow the desire to be connected to the digital world twenty-four hours a day to isolate them from society.“It is not enough to be passersby on the digital highways, simply ‘connected’. Connections need to grow into true encounters,” he said.- © AFP, 2014Read: Obama to meet Pope Francis in first Vatican visit since 2009 > Read: Pope Francis invites homeless people to breakfast for his birthday >last_img read more

Column I thought I did everything right – so why have I

first_imgTHERE IS ONLY so much rejection a girl can take. Thanks to a series of events, not completely within my control, I find myself at the midway point of 26, unemployed, in massive debt and with very few prospects on the horizon.This morning proved to be the tipping point in what has been months of irrational anger bubbling under the surface at where I find myself in life.I did what I was told in school, worked hard and had fun along the way and I received a very satisfactory result in the all-important Leaving Certificate, just shy of the 500 points mark. I got my preferred college course, which in all honesty I didn’t particularly want to do, but then again I didn’t know what I wanted to do. But being a good girl I did what I was again supposed to do and went to college.Aged 21 – I went to college and them the economy implodedFour years later I get a BSc degree like you’re supposed to, just in time for the economy imploding on itself. What is a girl to do? I’m 21, with a degree framed in the sitting room at home, therefore it was time for what I was supposed to do next – find a job, find a man, travel a bit, get engaged, get married and have a kid before or after the marriage, it doesn’t really matter anymore. My job was and still is, to continue with the monotony of human existence. Only I didn’t get that particular job spec. I got rejected from the vetting process it seems.I came fourth in the aptitude tests for a Clerical Officer job in the local County Council, and got into the planning department for a whole six months before I was unceremoniously shown the door because of the moratorium on hiring or extending contracts. There goes my notion of becoming a town planner. Off to the social welfare I go. Only I’m under 25 and live at home. My father is dead, my mother is a school teacher and my step-father has some land. Therefore I’m not entitled to anything on social welfare despite working since I was 14. At this point panic mode sets in.Aged 22 – This wasn’t supposed to happen to meI am now 22 with no job, no man, no money, what the hell? This wasn’t supposed to happen. There was the plan. Looking back now, I can only laugh – 21 years old and terrified I had missed the lifeboat. My friends in college were all working or in further education, so rather than remain outside the loop and get left behind I start applying for postgraduate courses in England because they’re cheaper than doing them in Ireland.I take the first one that I’m offered. It’s Magazine Journalism in the north west of England. I beg the bank for money to do it, they say no. I cry, I continue to beg, they agree to give me half the money. I sign the dotted line with a heaviness in my chest. But this is what I need to do right? I need to get on the planned life bandwagon before it’s too late. I tell myself that there is no other option, this is the only way.Then I’m on a ferry with my life packed into a Seat Leon. My step-father drives and one of my younger sisters comes for the journey. The Google map print out directs me to where I’m going to finally get back on track with the big life plan. Wrong. I make new friends, I make the bank give me the rest of the money, and I make a magazine. Now what?Aged 23 – When will my life fall into place?I am 23, with a degree framed in the sitting room at home, my MA scroll ready to sit framed beside it. Surely this was it. This was the time of my life that everything was going to fall into place. Turns out this girl can’t catch a break.Working in a bookies paid the rent and kept my head above water, but this couldn’t be it surely. This was never part of the big life plan. Everybody else is doing great, I need to buck up and up the ante. So I did. I got onto a graduate program and I moved back to Ireland. The graduate program fails to materialise. You’ve got to be kidding me?Pausing to take stock of my situation, I realise I’m 24 with no job, no man, no money, wait a minute, I’m exactly where I was two years ago, only €10,000 in debt being the major difference. That’s where I get sad and confused. I did everything I was supposed to do. I went to school, I went to college, I went back to college and all for nothing?Aged 25 – I’m living at home in a box roomSo, at 25, despite doing everything right, I’m living at home in a box room with a deep freeze and after much to-ing and fro-ing I get to go on the dole. Hurrah! I get offered an internship with a local newspaper. Things are looking up. I pack up my life again and move to a new town. I’m ready; this is it I’m sure, things are going to change. I was off the beaten track for a while, but now this has got to be it.Wrong. The internship is a bust, there was never going to be a real job at the end of it. I was just kidding myself. It’s funny how distance and separation from a situation can give you so much perspective on what was really going on.Aged 26  – €55.53 a week to live onNow I’m 26, in a town where I know no one, I can’t afford to move, I can’t afford to leave the country, hell I can’t afford the bus down home. I get €188 a week. I’m very glad I do. I appreciate it very much. After rent, bills and loan repayments, I come out with €55.53 a week to live on, provided it’s the week I don’t need to top up my phone. It makes Australia or Canada seem like a silly pipe-dream when you think about it.So I’ve resigned myself to days trawling through job websites, cover letters and sporadic moments of self-pity. What did I do wrong along the way? I’m at a loss. Last week I decided to apply for a training program, eight months of learning new skills to complement those I already possess. I had it all worked out. I would borrow money from my sister (already owed €175) or mom to buy a bike and I’d cycle the 23km to the city and back every day because I wouldn’t be able to afford the daily commute on the bus. At the end of it all I’d have a smoking hot body and skills that would definitely definitely get me a job. I would turn 27 with a job, with money, with a man (still hopeful on that front); I would turn 27 back on track.Wrong. I got the rejection email this morning. I’m “not eligible” for the course. Those two words seems rather apt in my regard, they sum up my life thus far. I’m “not eligible”. It’s a shame really, because I’ve done everything I was supposed to. What’s a girl to do when modern Irish life rejects her? Keep signing on I guess.Aoife O’Connor is a journalist from Kerry. You can view here LinkedIn page here or follow her on Twitter here.Read: USI calls for greater investment in Youth Guarantee Scheme>Read: “You are a privileged generation” – Barroso to TCD audience>last_img read more

Dublin ease to victory over Westmeath to reach Leinster semis

first_imgDublin 1-22Westmeath 0-9DUBLIN BEAT WESTMEATH 1-22 to 0-9 in Croke Park this evening, with Jim Gavin’s side largely untroubled over the course of the game.A late goal from Paddy Andrews rounded off their victory, in a match which their opponents rarely looked capable of winning.The Dubs got off to a very good start, with two points apiece from Bernard Brogan and Paddy Andrews helping them secure a 0-8 to 0-0 lead.However, Westmeath belatedly showed signs of life, as a good spell for the visitors saw them register four points in succession, with Denis Glennon and John Heslin (3) on target.However, perhaps sensing the threat, Dublin upped their game once more, and subsequently established a 0-12 to 0-4 lead going into the break.The second half continued in a similar fashion. While two points from Heslin and one from Kieran Martin early on kept Westmeath’s slim hopes alive, Dublin continued to dominate the play for the most part.Bernard Brogan scored his fifth point of the game to make it 0-14 to 0-7, before scores by Paul Flynn, Diarmuid Connolly, Ciaran Kilkenny and another from Brogan added to their tally.In the last five minutes, the hosts managed to put a gloss on the scoreline. Points from Dean Rock (2) and Diarmuid Connolly, as well as a coolly-taken side-footed goal into the corner of the net by Paddy Andrews, emphasised the gap in quality between the two sides. Scorers for Dublin: Bernard Brogan 0-7 (0-5f), Paddy Andrews 1-3, Paul Flynn, Diarmuid Connolly 0-3 each, Dean Rock 0-2 (0-1f), Cian O’Sullivan, Paul Mannion, Jack McCaffrey, Ciaran Kilkenny 0-1 each.Scorers for Westmeath: John Heslin 0-5 (0-5f), Denis Glennon 0-2, Kieran Martin, Denis Corroon 0-1 each. DUBLIN: Stephen Cluxton (Parnells); Rory O’Carroll (Kilmacud Crokes), Jonny Cooper (Na Fianna), Darren Daly (Fingal Ravens); James McCarthy (Ballymun Kickhams), Ger Brennan (St Vincent’s), Jack McCaffrey (Clontarf); Michael Dara Macauley (Ballyboden St Enda’s), Cian O’Sullivan (Kilmacud Crokes); Paul Flynn (Fingallians), Diarmuid Connolly (St Vincent’s), Ciaran Kilkenny (Castleknock); Paul Mannion (Kilmacud Crokes), Paddy Andrews (St Brigids), Bernard Brogan (Oliver Plunketts Eoghan Ruaidh).Subs: Kevin O’Brien (Naomh Mearnóg) for Daly (43), Nicky Devereux (Ballinteer St John’s) for McCarthy (48), Dean Rock (Ballymun Kickhams) for Mannion (52), Denis Bastick (Templeogue/Synge Street) for MacAuley (55), Cormac Costello (Whitehall Colmcilles) for Brogan (60)WESTMEATH: Gary Connaughton (Tubberclair); Mark McCallion (Garrycastle), Kieran Gavin (Mullingar Shamrocks),  Kevin Maguire (Caulry); Doron Harte (Garrycastle),Paul Sharry (St Loman’s), John Gaffey (Garrycastle); David Duffy (Shandonagh), John Heslin (St Loman’s); Kieran Martin (Maryland), Callum McCormack (Maryland), James Dolan (Garrycastle); Ger Egan (Tyrrellspass), Denis Glennon (Tyrrellspass), Ciaran Curley (Mullingar Shamrocks)Subs: Damian Dolan (Caulry) for Harte (48), Denis Corroon (Mullingar Shamrocks) for Curley (48), Darragh Daly (Mullingar Shamrocks) for Duffy (48), Paul Bannon (Athlone) for Egan (63), Aaron Purcell (Mullingar Shamrocks) for McCallon (65).Referee: Eddie Kinsella (Laois)As it happened: Dublin v Westmeath, Leinster SFC quarter-final>Four-star Kerry outclass Waterford in Munster SFC>last_img read more

32000 people set up a new business in Ireland last year

first_img“As a Government we stated a clear ambition for Ireland to be among the most entrepreneurial nations in the world and acknowledged as a world class environment in which to start and grow a business.”Entrepreneurs The report also examines the gender aspect of entrepreneurial activity in Ireland.There are now 1.4 times as many men as women who are new business owners.Minister Bruton said, “I am delighted to see that men and women in increasing numbers are becoming new business owners.”It also found that 13 per cent of early entrepreneurs expect to have 75 per cent or more of their customers in overseas markets.Tom Hayes, Head of Micro Enterprise and Small Business at Enterprise Ireland, said:The GEM report indicates that Irish early stage entrepreneurs have a stronger focus on international markets and exporting than their OCED and EU counterparts.“This focus of entrepreneurs on developing innovative products and services for export is essential for growth and economic recovery.”The GEM report is supported by Enterprise Ireland, Forfás and the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation.Declan Hughes, Head of the Enterprise, Trade and Innovation Policy Division, Forfás, said: “It is encouraging to see positive trends in entrepreneurship and to see ambitious plans for job creation.There is a need to continue to improve the perceived attractiveness of entrepreneurship as a career option and to ensure that entrepreneurs can access necessary sources of finance.Read: Column: Childcare is the main obstacle for women getting into business>Read: Opinion: Getting a company off the ground is very tough – but it’s also exhilarating> A NEW REPORT has found that 32,000 people in Ireland set up a new business in 2013 and 85 per cent of them expect to become employers.That’s according to the latest Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) report.It found that one in eleven of the adult population are engaged in some form of early stage entrepreneurial activity.It also reported that, “the pipeline of future entrepreneurs also looks very strong as those indicating that they intend to start a business in the next three years increased significantly in 2013″.The rate of early stage entrepreneurial activity is at its highest level since Ireland first became involved in GEM research in 2000.The country is now ranked second across the European Union, the Netherlands is in the top spot.Twenty-two per cent of early stage entrepreneurs expect to employ 10 or more people after five years.The Minister for Jobs, Richard Bruton welcomes the publication of the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor:Start-up businesses account for around two thirds of new jobs created in Ireland.last_img read more

5 examples of Ceann Comhairle Seán Barrett completely losing it with TDs

first_imgTHE DÁIL HAS risen for the summer and TDs are off on their holliers as well as doing a bit of that all important constituency work.While many of them will be grateful for the break they might also be pleased to get away from the Ceann Comhairle Seán Barrett who has regularly chastised deputies for their raucous behaviour in the chamber.Barrett has frequently stood up to give out to deputies for their “shouting and roaring” across the chamber over the last few years and in the last few months he’s been particularly prolific.Here are a few examples from the Dáil term that has just ended:1. That time when TDs embarrassed themselves on television…As Enda Kenny and Mary Lou McDonald went at it over budget cuts, which the latter claimed were forcing young people to emigrate, it all got very loud.That prompted Barrett to declare: “Roaring and shouting is getting nowhere. You’re an embarrassment on television!” Source: Hugh O’Connell/YouTube2. The next day when Barrett had some advice to shouty deputies… A day after that particular row the shouting and roaring continued prompting Barrett to offer some advice: “Take the morning off and go and watch television and see what it sounds like to be listening to the roaring and shouting”. Source: Hugh O’Connell/YouTube3. That time he threatened to resign It wasn’t TDs roaring that got Barrett upset on this occasion but rather the amount of times they ran over their allotted speaking times which prompted the Ceann Comhairle to make this little speech: Source: Video That time when a TD didn’t resume his seat and had to take a walk… Brendan Griffin wasn’t playing by the rules during the Order of Business which got Barrett pretty angry.“You can’t use the Order of Business for a chat,” he told Griffin before a lengthy row resulted in the Fine Gael deputy being told to leave the chamber. Source: Hugh O’Connell/YouTubeWhen Griffin did eventually leave under protest, Barrett responded sarcastically: “Thanks very much, that’s very kind of you, very considerate. Jesus, I’ve heard it all now.”5. When the Ceann Comhairle stands, everyone else sits Finally, just last month Barrett clashed with Gerry Adams and had to remind the Sinn Féin president of the rules: Source: Hugh O’Connell/YouTubeWith all this hassle over the last few months, we’re sure that Barrett himself is looking forward to the summer break…Gifs by Michelle HennessyAnother year over: What exactly has happened in the Dáil since September Dáil over: TDs are off on their summer holidays* and won’t return until the middle of Septemberlast_img read more