Investigators examine missing Iowa jogger’s Fitbit data as search continues

first_imgRob Hess/ABC News(BROOKLYN, Iowa) — Investigators in Iowa have zeroed in on missing jogger Mollie Tibbetts’ digital footprint, including her Fitbit — which can capture GPS data — as they work to solve her mysterious disappearance.Tibbetts, a 20-year-old rising sophomore at the University of Iowa, went jogging the evening of July 18 in her rural town of Brooklyn, Iowa, and never returned. She was reported missing the next day.“She probably has on her Fitbit because she never takes it off,” her boyfriend, Dalton Jack, said. “She uses it for the sleep tracker and for all her runs.”Jack last saw his girlfriend July 16, he said. The next day, he went to Dubuque for his job at a construction company, while Tibbetts stayed at his house alone and watched his dogs, Jack said.Going for an evening run, he added, was part of her regular routine.“For a 20-year-old to go missing and completely kind of fall off the grid as far as social media, cell phone, banking activity, that kind of thing — it’s obviously a very suspicious and very serious matter,” Mitch Mortvedt, assistant director of field operations for the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigations, said.“She’s very well-connected through social media, cellphone, exercise equipment,” Mortvedt said, “so we are trying to use that, obviously, to our advantage to gain any information that we can.”Poweshiek County Sheriff Thomas Kriegel added: “We do believe that there’s going to be some useful information [from the Fitbit data] but [we are] not willing to share that.”Fitbit Inc., which makes the activity trackers, declined to comment.Police are also looking at surveillance video from businesses in town that are along the route Tibbetts she usually jogs, the sheriff said.“She was kind of a creature of habit,” Mortvedt, of the state Division of Criminal Investigations, said. “And about the same time every evening she’d go for a run during daylight hours; well before dusk or dark, and she was seen Wednesday evening on one of her normal routes.”In this close-knit farming community of about 1,500 people, everyone knows everyone, Sheriff Kriegel said. But the rural area makes the search difficult.“We’re surrounded by farm ground: corn and soybeans. Right now the corn is probably eight, nine feet tall. The only way you can search it is basically walk down every other row,” he said. “It’s difficult. Even the planes flying over have a difficulty looking down in the corn rows.”Meanwhile, Tibbetts’ family is searching every field and every creek in town as they anxiously hope for answers.One of Tibbetts’ brothers, Scott Tibbetts, said he believes his sister is “fighting her best to get back home.”“She’s a better fighter than anyone I know,” Scott Tibbetts said. “So whatever situation she’s in, it’s not like she’s going to sit there and give up.”Mollie Tibbetts’ boyfriend and brothers are not suspects, Kriegel said.Anyone with information can call the Poweshiek County Sheriff’s Office at 641-623-5679.Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Transforming IT Performance into Formula One Success

first_imgWhen people think of McLaren they think of Formula One where we have been competing since 1966. What makes us unique today is our diversification into three different businesses including a global, high-performance sports car business, McLaren Automotive, and a game-changing technology and innovation business, McLaren Applied Technologies as well as McLaren Formula One team. While our first goal is to win World Championships, we also strive to be a sustainable ongoing business and today we are recognised as one of the world’s most illustrious high-technology brands.The biggest challenge we face is supporting the growth and speed of innovation across these businesses. IT is fundamental not only to the building of infrastructure and communications technology but also to our high performance culture. Within Formula One our main focus is on improving our performance on the track. Formula One doesn’t operate like a normal business, there are 700 people focused on a getting a car to go around a track as quickly as possible.The way the car is designed has changed significantly over the last few years. Today much more is done using simulation, modelling and data analysis and the concept of a digital twin for every component of the car is now really important to the Formula One team. We have a huge requirement to drive continuous development through virtual, digital twin versions of our components to make sure that everything we design and engineer at the factory leads to a true on track performance when it reaches the car itself.A new component is manufactured every 17 minutes, 24 hours a day, and 7 days a week, that’s just the pace of innovation, optimization and iteration of every single component on the car that a company needs to operate at to excel in Formula One. From the start of the season to the end of the season around 80% of the components of the car will change. The Formula One car never reaches production status, it’s a continuous-running prototype and all this is underpinned by great technology.Data is the foundation of making the car go faster and IT is there to support this. At trackside, data is critical as decisions are made at the point of knowledge. There are around 300 sensors on a Formula One car and McLaren will collect around 100 gigabytes of data per car during a race weekend. That data needs to be accessed in real-time by the engineers, both trackside and mission control, in order to be able to make decisions on with the car. Using machine learning and analytics we can dig down into what’s important.We are never more than a meter away from a piece of Dell Technologies equipment which we use to support our entire IT landscape. Within Formula One we need to ensure that we are finding marginal performance gains within our server estate, our storage estate and our desktop computer estate in order to support the business. Optimizing our own IT performance enables us to optimize the Formula One performance.last_img read more

Rain gardens make use of runoff water

first_imgPut stormwater to good use by adding rain gardens to your landscape, says a University of Georgia water expert.“The key is to find a site that captures a shallow amount of water and holds it for a short time,” said Sheryl Wells, a stormwater specialist with the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.Helps reduce flood risks, tooRain gardens benefit the environment by capturing stormwater, reducing runoff and reducing flood risk in area streams.Rain gardens aren’t ponds or water gardens, Wells said. The shallow amount of water a rain garden needs doesn’t remain for a long time like in a wetland or bog garden. “You just don’t want to create a breeding ground for mosquitoes,” she said. Properly designed rain gardens drain within 48 hours, before mosquitoes can breed.Pick a low spotWhen selecting a location, choose a spot where water naturally flows to a low area. Place a rain garden near a patio or driveway to catch and use runoff from these surfaces. “Rain gardens must be downstream of where the runoff begins, so place your rain garden in lower areas where water will naturally move,” Wells said.Rain gardens shouldn’t be installed over septic tanks or within 50 feet upstream or 10 feet downstream of septic system drainage fields.“If there is a seasonally high water table in the landscape, a rain garden should not be located over that area,” Wells said. “If water stands in the area for long periods after rainfall or if wetland-type plants are evident, the location likely has a water table too high for a rain garden.”Make sure your site is at least 10 feet from a building.A rain garden’s size is determined by how much runoff it will filter. Often, a rain garden will only capture runoff from downspouts of a house roof.Use rope or hose to design shape To design the garden, use a rope, a garden hose or outdoor marking paint to outline the area. Remove 4-6 inches of topsoil and excavate the area to the depth desired minus the 4-6 inches of topsoil. The soil removed from the middle can be moved to the downhill side of the rain garden to form the outer berm. The inside of the rain garden should be flat, and the soil loose in preparation for returning the topsoil.Check soil drainage rate Just like Goldilocks and her porridge, rain gardens need soil that holds just the right amount of water.Test the site’s soil for permeability. Sandy loam or loamy sand are ideal as their permeability rate is 1 to 6 inches per hour, Wells said.If water absorbs rapidly into the soil, build a small rain garden. If water infiltrates slowly, the rain garden needs to be larger. If native soils don’t have suitable permeability, replace the soil with a more permeable soil mix. Compost used in a rain garden should be mature, well-composted materials, not just any kind of fresh organic matter. More mature composts have lower nutrient content and release nutrients slowly. Uncomposted manures are likely too high in nitrogen or phosphorus.Just like other gardens, the rain garden soil should be tested before adding plants. Soil tests show the soil’s pH and nutrient content. Test kits are available at UGA Cooperative Extension offices.“A rain garden’s ponding depth should be 4 to 9 inches,” Wells said. “A ponding depth of more than 9 inches may pond water too long.” Add perennial and choice annuals Perennial plants and trees can be planted in rain gardens. Choose annuals with low water requirements. For best results, mix a variety of wet- and drought-tolerant trees, shrubs, perennials and ornamental grasses. Turfgrass can be used but is not typically mixed with ornamentals.Avoid plants that are susceptible to root rots like most coniferous shrubs, adapted exotic azaleas, Indian hawthorne and camellias.For a complete list of suggested rain garden plants, see the UGA rain garden publication on-line at www.caes.uga.edu/Publications.last_img read more