Torngat Mountains National Park offers view through Inuit eyes

first_imgAPTN National NewsThe Torngat Mountains in Labrador is Canada’s newest national park.And from the very beginning it was designed with the Inuit in mind.APTN National News reporter Ossie Michelin was at the park and files this report.last_img

Trudeau government announces 14B in new funding for First Nation child welfare

first_imgAPTN NewsFirst Nation child welfare services will see nearly $1.4 billion in additional funding over the next five years according to the 2018 federal budget released Tuesday in Ottawa.Exactly how it will be allocated is not clear, as the budget is thin on details, but it’s geared towards on-reserve services.An immediate influx of $70 million will be available until the end of April, followed by annual increases between $265-295 million.It will mean the total amount Ottawa funds for on-reserve child welfare services will jump from nearly $890 million in the 2017-2018 fiscal year to about $1.12 billion allocated in 2022.The budget mentions this is part of the government’s goal of meeting demands from the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal that ruled in 2016 that the feds have chronically underfunded First Nations child welfare services.Finance Minister Bill Morneau said in his House of Commons speech Tuesday that investments “will give better child and family service support, with a special focus on prevention, so that Indigenous children are not taken from their families and their communities.”The investment in child welfare is part of nearly $5 billion in new funding from the Trudeau government in the 2018 budget.New money is being put into several areas, including drinking water, housing and health. Self-determination programs alone will net more than $600 million over the next five years.That includes $51.4 million in the next two years for the federal government to support “Indigenous participation” at the so-called self-determination discussion tables.Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced a new legal framework for Indigenous people about two weeks ago that is supposed to lead to self-determination and the “full and meaningful” implementation of treaties and agreements.The minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations will lead “national engagement activities” throughout the spring to determine the contents of the new framework. The government hopes to have it introduced later this year and implemented by October 2019.“This budget invests in new tools to help nations rebuild, and to accelerate self-determination and self-government based on recognition of Indigenous rights, so that our shared future is one where Indigenous peoples are in control of their own destiny, making their own decisions about their future,” said Morneau.There is new money for housing but a closer look at the budget shows the money announced in Tuesday’s budget is mostly from the previous year.Of the $1.5 billion to be spent over the next 10 years, divided up among First Nation, Inuit and Metis, all but $300 million of that comes from the 2017 budget as part of the $4 billion allocated for infrastructure.It’s just now finally being allocated.Housing critics have long said tens of billions are needed to fix the housing crisis in Indigenous communities across the country.One interesting aspect of the budget is the “distinctions-based approach” for Inuit and Metis, as well as First Nations.Through negotiations with Metis National Council, the Trudeau government has allocated $516 million over 10 years, with almost all of that going to housing. The remaining is $10 million for post-secondary education in 2018 and another $6 million for developing a health strategy.Through discussions with Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, the federal government is funding $27. 5 million over five years to support ITK’s Inuit-specific approach to eradicate tuberculosis. As well, another $82 million for creating a permanent Inuit Health Survey.There is also a distinctions-based approach when it comes to employment with the rebranding of the former Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Program.Nearly $2 billion will be invested in the new Indigenous Skills and Employment Training Program over the next five years. Nearly $440 million of that is new funding.Metis National Council will receive $325 million, Inuit get $161 million, urban groups (non-status) will get $213 million as part of the program.The rest goes to First Nations.There also appears to be significant investments in First Nations health. Nearly $1.5 billion will be divided among areas, such as nursing stations, addiction programs and expanding “successful models” of self-determination of health services.The budget also earmarks an additional $172 million over the next three years for drinking water. That’s in addition to $1.8 billion announced in the 2016 budget for drinking water.The new funding is supposed to speed up construction and renovate existing water systems.“We have already lifted 52 long-term boil water advisories and are on track to have all others eliminated by March 2021,” said Morneau.There was no new funding for First Nations education from kindergarten to Grade 12.news@aptn.calast_img read more

Russia Could Get Junk Status in 2015 Says Former Minister China Willing

first_imgThe Russian government’s slow stance on the growing economic instability could earn it “junk” status in 2015, said former finance minister Alexei Kudrin on Monday.At a news conference, Kudrin said that the western sanctions over the Ukraine crisis was deterring the economy from growing and the government’s slow decisions were not making it any better for the country.”Today, I can say that we have entered or are entering a real, full-fledged economic crisis. Next year we will feel it clearly. The government has not been quick enough to address the situation … I am yet to hear … its clear assessment of the current situation,” Kudrin was quoted by Reuters as saying.”Russia will get a downgrade. It will enter the ‘junk’ territory,” said Kudrin.Kudrin also said that if oil prices remained at current levels, the Russian economy could shrink by 4 percent.”This is a serious challenge to the economy,” said Kudrin.Kudrin’s warning comes just after the government bailed out the National Bank Trust for $531 million (30 billion rubles) to prevent it from going bankrupt. This marks the Russian central bank’s first bailout since the currency slump and the biggest ever financial rescue, reflecting the seriousness of the matter.Experts say more banks could soon follow suit because of the lack of liquidity in the market.”It’s 100 percent sure that more banks will be rescued because there is an acute shortage of liquidity. The interbank market has practically come to a halt because of a lack of trust and the central bank is afraid of giving more rubles to banks so they don’t buy more dollars with them,” Maxim Osadchy, head of analysis at BKF Bank in Moscow was quoted by Bloomberg.Considering Russia’s financial struggle, China said it was willing to offer help to the country. “We are convinced that Russia has the ability and the wisdom to overcome the current kind of challenging situation. We consistently support and help each other. If the Russian side requires it, then we will offer required assistance within the scope of our abilities,” Wang Yi, Chinese foreign minister was quoted by The Wall Street Journal as saying.Though China and Russia haven’t had very strong ties in the history, Moscow is reportedly seeking to bridge gaps with Beijing as both countries want to reduce dependence on US dollars in international transactions.China and Russia have signed a three-year currency-swap deal worth $24.1 billion.Russian analysts say any kind of help is welcome but the western sanctions are the real problem.”…it can’t substitute the losses of the Russian banking system and economy from western sanctions,” Vladimir Miklashevsky, a strategist at Danske Bank A/S, said in an e-mail to Bloomberg.last_img read more

Vijay Mallya laundered Rs 500 crore of Rs 900 crore IDBI loan

first_imgIBTimes VideoRelated VideosMore videos Play VideoPlayMute0:00/0:00Loaded: 0%0:00Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVE0:00?Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedSubtitlessubtitles settings, opens subtitles settings dialogsubtitles off, selectedAudio TrackFullscreenThis is a modal window.The media could not be loaded, either because the server or network failed or because the format is not supported.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window. COPY LINKAD Loading … Close Are bad times awaiting the “King of good times”?center_img The Enforcement Directorate (ED) in its affidavit filed in a UK court has claimed that Vijay Mallya — who was arrested on Tuesday in London — had laundered around Rs 500 crore of the Rs 900 crore loan he took from IDBI Bank in India.According to the economic intelligence agency, Mallya diverted the loan money to at least seven countries, including the US, the UK, France, Switzerland and Ireland. The affidavit provides complete money-trail details.The affidavit suggests that he used several shell companies and some of his legitimate companies besides Kingfisher Airlines to divert the money by generating fake invoices or through over-invoicing of products, the Times of India reported.Not just that, but Mallya had also appointed dummy directors in the shell companies, while he would control and look after any business-related fund transfers.In addition to the probe, Britain’s Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has found that the current residence of Mallya in London known as the Lady Walk was bought using money he borrowed from the Indian banks and then routed through companies located in the UK.The SFO has shared the details with the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), according to a report by India Today.According to an official, the prosecutors in London now have everything they need to prove criminality of Vijay Mallya.”Now, our extradition case will be heard along with CBI’s extradition proceedings in the Westminster court in December,” said an ED officer.Extradition is the act by one jurisdiction of delivering a person who has been accused of committing a crime in another jurisdiction. The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) takes up extradition requests with the concerned foreign countries when a request for extradition is received from the relevant law enforcement agencies in India.Reports last month suggested both the CBI and the ED believed Mallya had diverted most of the Rs 6,000 crore borrowed from banks to shell companies.Both agencies said evidence gathered would strengthen their case for Mallya’s extradition from the UK.The nation’s biggest public sector bank, the State Bank of India, is the leader of the consortium of 17 banks to whom Mallya owes over Rs 9,000 crore.Liquor baron Mallya had left the country in March 2016 after public sector banks claimed he was a loan defaulter and owed an estimated amount of Rs 9,091 crore. They had also approached the Debt Recovery Tribunal. In picture: Vijay Mallya.ReutersMallya was arrested in London on Tuesday, but was granted bail shortly after being produced before the Westminster Magistrates’ Court for a hearing.”I deny all allegations that have been made and I will continue to deny them. I have not eluded any court. I’ve given enough evidence to prove my case,” Mallya said outside the court after the hearing.Mallya, who was also a member of the Rajya Sabha, left the Indian shores about six days before the banks approached the court.The fight between Mallya and the CBI and ED is expected to get intense in the future and bringing him back could be a tough job. Both the agencies are, however, hoping they will get him in the December 4 hearing.last_img read more

Democrats capture US House majority

first_imgAlissa Mauk and her son, Lyric, 8, look on at Democratic US Senator Heidi Heitkamp`s midterm election night party in West Fargo, North Dakota, US on 6 November. Photo: ReutersDemocrats rode a wave of dissatisfaction with president Donald Trump to win control of the US House of Representatives on Tuesday where they will seek to keep his agenda in check and open his administration to intense scrutiny.In midterm elections two years after he won the White House, Trump and his fellow Republicans were set to maintain their majority in the US Senate following a divisive campaign marked by fierce clashes over race, immigration and other cultural issues.With a House majority, Democrats will have the power to investigate Trump’s tax returns and possible conflicts of interest, and challenge his overtures to Saudi Arabia, Russia and North Korea.They also could force Trump to scale back his legislative ambitions, possibly dooming his promises to fund a border wall with Mexico, pass a second major tax-cut package or carry out his hardline policies on trade.S&P equity index futures erased most of their gains on expectations Democrats would seize the House.A simple House majority would be enough to impeach Trump if evidence surfaces that he obstructed justice or that his 2016 campaign colluded with Russia. But Congress could not remove him from office without a conviction by a two-thirds majority in the Republican-controlled Senate.Democrats in the House could be banking on launching an investigation using the results of US special counsel Robert Mueller’s already 18-month-old probe of allegations of Russian interference on Trump’s behalf in the 2016 presidential election. Moscow denies meddling and Trump denies any collusion.Tuesday’s result was a bitter outcome for Trump, a 72-year-old former reality TV star and businessman-turned-politician, after a campaign that became a referendum on his leadership.Down the stretch, Trump hardened his rhetoric on issues that appealed to his conservative core supporters, issuing warnings about a caravan of Latin American migrants headed to the border with Mexico and condemnations of liberal American “mobs.”Democrats turned out in droves to register disapproval of his divisive rhetoric and policies on such issues as immigration and his travel ban targeting several Muslim-majority countries.A record number of women ran for office this election, many of them Democrats turned off by Trump’s policy agenda.The election results mean Democrats will resume House control in January for the first time since the 2010 election, beginning a split-power arrangement with the Republican-led Senate that may force Trump to scale back his legislative ambitions and focus on issues with bipartisan support, such as an infrastructure improvement package or protections against prescription drug price increases.It also will test Trump’s ability to compromise, something he has shown little interest in over the last two years with Republicans controlling both chambers of Congress.The loss of power will test Trump’s political hold on House Republicans, most of whom had pledged their support for him lest they face the wrath of the party’s core supporters, who remain in his corner.Democrats celebrate after gubernatorial candidate Laura Kelly wins against Kris Kobach at her election night party in Topeka, Kansas, US on 6 November. Photo: Reuters Tag: USA, Democrats, Donald Trump, Barac ObamaMost Democratic candidates in tight races stayed away from harsh criticism of Trump during the campaign’s final stretch, focusing instead on bread-and-butter issues like keeping down healthcare costs, maintaining insurance protections for people with pre-existing medical conditions and safeguarding the Social Security retirement and Medicare healthcare programs for senior citizens.The final weeks before the election were marked by the mailing of pipe bombs to his top political rivals, with a political fan of Trump arrested and charged, and the mass shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue in which 11 people died, sparking a debate about Trump’s biting rhetoric and whether it encouraged extremists.In the House, Democrats picked up seats across the map, ousting incumbent Republican Barbara Comstock in suburban Virginia and sending Donna Shalala, a former Cabinet secretary under president Bill Clinton, to the House in south Florida.In the Senate, where Republicans were heavily favored to keep control heading into Tuesday’s voting, Republican Mike Braun captured incumbent Joe Donnelly’s seat in Indiana and Republican Kevin Cramer beat incumbent Democratic senator Heidi Heitkamp in North Dakota.Some of the biggest Democratic stars of the campaign season were struggling. Liberal House member Beto O’Rourke became a national sensation with his underdog US Senate campaign but fell short in conservative Texas, and Andrew Gillum was trailing Republican Ron DeSantis in his quest to become the first African-American governor of the key swing state of Florida.Incumbent Democratic senator Joe Manchin won a hotly contested race in conservative West Virginia, and conservative Marsha Blackburn held a Senate seat for Republicans.Senators Bernie Sanders of Vermont, a 2016 Democratic presidential contender, and Tim Kaine of Virginia, Hillary Clinton’s vice presidential nominee in 2016, easily won re-election, news networks projected. Democratic Senator Sherrod Brown was projected to hold his seat in Ohio.All 435 seats in the House, 35 seats in the 100-member Senate and 36 of the 50 state governorships were up for grabs.last_img

A Path Out Of Poverty Career Training Quality Pre K

first_img Share Logan Faerber/Getty Images/Imagezoo RMWhat makes a high-quality learning program effective not just for the child but the whole family? What else, besides a well-run pre-K, is essential to help families break out of intergenerational poverty?These are some of the key questions that an approach called “two-generation” programs are working to answer. There are many of these “two-gen” programs across the U.S. And while they differ in emphasis and detail, at their core they intentionally focus on ways to help both the child and parent. Usually this happens through targeted education and career training and other vital support such as health services, mentoring, and transportation.NPR Ed has been keeping an eye on one innovative two-gen program in Oklahoma. It’s called Career Advance and is run by the Community Action Project of Tulsa County (CAP Tulsa). I’ve reported on it here and here. It gives low-income mothers access to high-quality Head Start for their children, alongside free career training in nursing and other in-demand health care fields as well as life coaching and support.A new study on the first year impact of Tulsa’s Career Advance that’s just been released shows that, so far, Career Advance is working well for both parents and their children. In fact, the study says, CAP Tulsa’s program is working better than similar combined job training and pre-K programs elsewhere in terms of job certification, employment, income and overall well-being for the parent. And, the report shows, the program has boosted attendance and reduced absenteeism among participating children.I reached out to two of study’s co-authors to find out more. Teresa Eckrich Sommer is a research professor at Northwestern University’s Institute for Policy Research. Chris King is a senior research scientist and lecturer at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin.When I went down to report on the program, no one had studied it in-depth. Is this the first big look at this program and its impact? Teresa Ekrich Sommer: This is the first one. We’re [a colleague, Lindsay Chase-Lansdale at Northwestern University, is the first author on this paper] looking at what happens at the end of year one.In terms of their education, we see that participants had much higher rates of certification in the healthcare fields. And then we see that in terms of employment, a greater proportion of the families, at the end of the first year, are employed in the specific career to which they’ve been trained, as compared to those who weren’t in the program. Sixty-one percent compared to 3 percent.Chris King: I would add to that, Eric, that the kinds of impacts we’re seeing, certainly in terms of job certification, the shifts towards healthcare employment are much larger than anything you see in most other similar career pathway programs. I think this speaks to the components of the model: the career coaching, the peer groups and the incentives.[The program offers a $3,000 a year max incentive if certain goals are reached — for example, attendance at monthly partner meetings for skills training, as well as incentives for achieving milestones such as certification.]You’re saying that there’s no secret sauce, that it’s the whole package? The financial incentives, the career counseling, the mentoring, etc., all together?Eckrich Sommer: We can’t conclusively say what single element matters the most. You know, at the base, just having this high-quality early childhood education is an incredible starting point for them.There’s no question that the financial incentives make an enormous difference to them in their lives. Many of them have previous college debt, and are struggling financially. And we have people in the comparison group that are similar in motivation and interest and talk about how big their financial struggles are. So I think that’s a significant piece.Also, I wouldn’t want to leave out the importance of the fact that these are families doing this together. They’re in a small learning group. They go to school together, they have their schedules for school when they start out coordinated with their child’s Head Start schedule, so they can both pick up and drop off their kids and still go to school. And many continue to work, usually in off hours.And also this coach is an essential element to helping families break down big goals, set specific markers along the way and be able to achieve them. Such as becoming a certified nurse assistant or becoming a licensed nurse practitioner, and knowing how to make those steps and decide, ‘Should I take a full course-load? Can I take a half course-load? How do I do this and manage the work and income I need for my family?’ with the education that they’re trying to pursue at the same time.For the children, I also see that attendance was better and fewer were chronically absent. But the absentee rate is still kinda high. Near 50 percent. Do you think there’s more to do to lower that?Eckrich Sommer: I think there is. I know that the eye goes towards the high rate. The bar is pretty low, it’s missing 10 percent or more of the school days. It tends to be a few kids who are absent a lot that drive up those numbers.Your report argues that Career Advance is doing better than comparable career training programs in other cities in America. In your view, what exactly is Career Advance doing better?King: Career Advance fits within the family of other career pathway sector strategies. Employer-driven strategies based in specific growth sectors of the labor market that offer opportunities for career advancement over time in jobs with good wages and benefits, e.g., health care, advanced manufacturing, transportation and logistics. It may be that they have more of all these elements feeding together to make the success possible. What we really have, I think, blown away is traditional postsecondary workforce and education training which doesn’t have persistence completion and employment kinds of effects the same size, at all, to what we’re seeing here.Eckrich Sommer: What’s incredibly important is that we’re building on what’s already a positive platform, which is early childhood education. So we know the kids are getting these huge benefits. And then we’re adding to that these incredible benefits to the parents.The question is, what is the overall effect over time? And as we follow the kids we’ll know that in a few years.There’s additional help under the program: gas cards, bus passes, childcare outside of Head Start’s normal hours. Overall, it’s costly. Can it be scaled or replicated easily?King: Easily, probably not. … It’s admittedly a high-cost intervention. So you’re paying for both parents and kids to get leading-edge, high-quality services, very intensive. At the same time, the way the Career Advance model has rolled out, it really hasn’t been a model that relied on the other partners involved to ante up.And I think going forward the way to scale this thing up is to go to the workforce system. To go to the community college system. To go to other providers in the community and say ‘OK, we’re providing the wraparound services, the career coaches, the Head Start services.’ You could then begin to share the cost for training those parents going forward and probably cut those costs to some extent.We know that the return on investment for early childhood is what, [between] 7 [and] 13-to-1. I mean, it’s high. We see similar returns for adult services in career pathway sector models. So the theory that we’re operating under, we don’t have the proof yet, is that when you combine them, you should get at least that, if not more.If someone from another city said ‘We want to replicate this, but it looks expensive.’ What do you tell them?Eckrich Sommer: What’s really interesting and important to think about is these initial investments, I think, have led to some changes in the way the local educational partners do their business. And that kind of systems change is essential.So, for example, by buying classes at the local community college, and working very closely with the instructors there, they’ve thought much harder about how do you serve families well? Parents of young children, who in fact, are a large majority of the population at many community colleges nationally.And so if you change the way things are done in a traditional school system, then you’re making improvements that you can’t even quantify, but you know , are the result of this initial big investment.It’s not cheap, but it is less expensive than the initial intensive model.And we will have more results, unfortunately, in about five years.What are the takeaways here for cities and states that might not be able to afford this kind of a gold-standard program, but still want to try to replicate some of the achievements CAP Tulsa is seeing?King: [Colleges need to] make it easier for all students, but especially parents, to navigate what the offerings are, and focus those offerings on sectors that are growing, that will lead to families sustaining jobs. Project Quest in San Antonio has done a good job. [Other leading examples include programs with the Wisconsin Regional Training Partnership, Per Scholas, and Jewish Vocational Services.]Having governors support [two-gen] strategies and having local workforce entities pursue them is now part of the federal legislation and guidance coming out of the U.S. Department of Labor. Under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, governors must support implementation of career, private sector strategies statewide and are encouraged to embed career pathway approaches as well.Eckrich Sommer: I think it’s about partnership. And I think community colleges and early childhood education programs and anti-poverty programs can work together, and figure out how they can both serve parents and children.And I think they’re both invested in that, but they tend to focus on their primary population and if they think about investing in the other, and how it’ll improve the gains for each, then everyone’s better off.[The CAP Tulsa study was funded in part by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as part of the Affordable Care Act’s Health Professions Opportunity Grant]Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.last_img read more

Lebanon again fails to elect new president

first_imgThe Lebanese parliament failed Wednesday for the 17th consecutive time to convene and elect a new president because of lack of the constitutionally required quorum.Speaker Nabih Berri issued a statement calling for a new session Jan 28 following the failure of the parliament to convene, Xinhua reported. According to the constitution, two-thirds of the 128-member parliament should be present for the election session to proceed, but only 50 MPs were present at the house Wednesday. Also Read – Pro-Govt supporters rally as Hong Kong’s divisions deepenBecause of the sharp political division among the Syrian-backed March 8 camp and the Western-backed March 14 camp, the parliament has failed since April 2014 in convening for the presidential election.The March 14 camp is backing head of the Lebanese Forces Samir Geagea for the post, while the March 8 camp is backing head of the Free Patriotic Movement MP Michel Aoun for president. The centrist Democratic Gathering, led by MP Walid Jumblatt, is backing MP Henri Helo for the post. Also Read – Pak Army ‘fully prepared’ to face any challenge: Army spokesmanLebanon has been without a president since the end of former president Michel Suleiman’s term May 25, but has witnessed a similar situation back in 1988 and 2007.Following the end of former president Amine Gemayel’s term in 1988, the parliament failed to elect a president and the post was only filled following the approval of the Taef agreement in 1989 when President Michel Moawad was elected. In July 2007, when former President Emile Lahoud’s term ended, the post was left vacant until May 2008 when the Doha agreement was approved and President Michel Suleiman was elected.According to the country’s power sharing pact, the president should be a Christian Maronite, the speaker a Shia and the premier a Sunni.last_img read more

A Smarter Calendar How Tempo Can Help You Rule Your Next Meeting

first_img Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global 3 min read December 10, 2013 If you’re someone who spends your day in meetings, then keeping up with them all can be a daunting task. One app, Tempo, is trying to make the experience a bit easier, taking a big data approach to your schedule and turning your calendar into a personal assistant.The free calendar app was created while founder Raj Singh was an Entrepreneur in Residence at Menlo Park, Calif.-based research institute SRI International, the birthplace of Apple’s personal assistant Siri. Tempo uses some of the same technology found in Siri. But where Siri requires you to ask a question and then get an answer, Tempo instead tries to anticipate what information you need, and provide it, before you even know you need it.“We like to say that it looks like a calendar, but it feels like an assistant,” Singh says.Tempo works alongside your existing calendar, adding rich information to each entry to make you more informed and better prepared for each meeting. Paired with your email and LinkedIn account, the app can bring in relevant information about each person you’re meeting with, the business they work for and any email or documents you might have relating to the meeting.Related: 3 Web-Based Tools You Probably Haven’t Heard of But Definitely Should Be UsingWhen you start communicating with someone over email, Tempo can automatically create an address book entry for that person. The app can also identify phone numbers in the signature line of emails, incorporating them automatically into your address book as well.And get this: Come meeting time, Tempo provides driving directions to your off-site meeting, or will dial you in — including access codes — to a conference call. If you’re running late, the app can text or email everyone in the meeting to let them know with a single tap.All that additional data is one of the things Singh feels sets Tempo apart from its competition.“I think the key difference is how we attack it [the calendar] as a sort of big data problem,” he says.Related: 5 Gadgets to Make Your Home a ‘Smarter’ PlaceSince its launch in February the app has been used to find and organize more than 15 million contacts for users, and has processed over 1 billion emails and documents.Singh says he sees a future where Tempo’s data could be used to determine things like how many sales calls it really takes to make a deal or what Manhattan Starbucks is most popular for meetings on a Tuesday.He also sees that data being exceptionally useful when layered on top of a tool like LinkedIn. Rather than just being able to see that two people are connected on the service, Tempo could show you how strong the connection is based on the number of meetings and emails between the two.Singh says the more Tempo learns, the more assistant-like it will become.Tempo is available now for iOS devices from the App Store, with support for other platforms expected in the future.Related: 5 Habits of Productivity App Super Users Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Register Now »last_img read more