Explosives experts on Sunday defused a World War II bomb in the southern coastal Italian city of Brindisi (above) following a historic evacuation of the city center. More than 50,000 people were evacuated from their homes in the run-up to the operation, comprising more than 60% of the city's population. Local media described it as the largest operation of its kind since the end of the war. Technicians guided a remote-controlled robot to defuse the explosive. Similar models of the robot had been deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera. Read more: Balsamico 'made in Germany' not illegal, says EU Risky business The explosive was identified as a British bomb presumably dropped on Brindisi in 1941. It weighed more than 200 kilograms (440 pounds) and carried 40 kilograms of dynamite. The bomb was discovered during a refurbishment project for a cinema. However, workers had damaged part of the bomb, raising the likelihood that the explosive … [Read more...] about Italy: World War II bomb triggers evacuation
What’s going for it? Imagine the scene. Early 70s. Handlebar moustaches. Santana on the radio. California comes to Suffolk. OK, it’s an insurance firm, not a Silicon Valley startup. But look at that office: straight outta San Fran. Almost mirror-glass walls. Cool. Rooftop cafe. Escalators. Acid colours. What? A built-in swimming pool?! The Willis building, built by Norman Foster in his late 30s, still looks as if the future hasn’t quite caught up with it. Ipswich’s future turned out more banal than bright. At least it’s fairly prosperous. Small mercies. But the waterfront slick of office parks and Pizza Expresses is more David Brent than Steve Jobs. Look hard, though, and you can – just about – find Ipswichness peeping out, in its burgeoning festival scene, say, or the independent shops and 17th-century gables amid the Zizzis on St Nicholas Street. For a thousand years, this was a North Sea port up there with Hamburg and Antwerp. Who knows, one … [Read more...] about Let’s move to Ipswich, Suffolk: ‘More David Brent than Steve Jobs’
Q With very little time before we break up, my department of 55 people has left it very late to organise our Christmas party. Do you have any tips on what we could do, knowing that pretty much everywhere will be booked up? And do you have any advice on how a senior manager like myself should behave? I don’t want to be a party pooper, have one drink and leave, but I’m no party animal either… First things first, make an action note for January to book next year’s Christmas party. By booking early, you will get a suitable place and avoid all this last minute panic. As far as this Christmas is concerned, you may be too late! If you find somewhere that can feed and entertain your 55 people, there... … [Read more...] about Ask Sir John Timpson: Should senior managers stick to the one-drink-rule at the office Christmas party?
In 2014, children are playing Minecraft, watching YouTube and playing with apps – but they’re also still reading books, watching TV and playing with toys. Kids are more digital, but that doesn’t mean they’re abandoning traditional sources of entertainment. That makes an event like the Children’s Media Conference very interesting. Founded as an annual gathering in Sheffield for children’s TV creators and executives, in recent years digital has played a growing role. That was reflected in the opening keynote speech at this year’s conference in Sheffield, delivered by Dylan Collins, chief executive of children’s marketing and research network SuperAwesome, which works with various children’s brands to help them understand digital trends. Collins laid out his thoughts on the challenges facing children’s entertainment companies in the next five years, while encouraging them to work more with the emerging group of … [Read more...] about YouTube, apps and Minecraft: digital kids and the future of children’s media
In YouTube’s fashionable central London “space”, where good-looking young people mill around and help themselves to the well-stocked free kitchen, there is a noticeboard that asks staff and visitors: What could we do better? On one of the sticky notes, someone has written “Nothing!!” It would be reassuring for the executives who run the video site if that were true, although not many would agree that it is. Susan Wojcicki, YouTube’s CEO, who is in town for a three-week tour of Europe, is one of the most impressive and powerful women in tech – and also one of the most beleaguered. We meet in one of the studios, where YouTubers with more than 10,000 subscribers can make videos, and sit on sofas in a set with a faux brick-wall backdrop, which gives a slightly unnerving sense of fake cosiness. Wojcicki (pronounced “Wo-jisky”) seems friendly but businesslike; chatty, but is careful about what she says. There is a lot to talk about: … [Read more...] about YouTube’s Susan Wojcicki: ‘Where’s the line of free speech – are you removing voices that should be heard?’