The panels, less than one inch thick are experiments in casting very thin, less than 1/2 inch thick, light weight concrete reinforced with glass fiber rather than steel.” – Roger TomaltyThis report continues on Friday, 8/9/2013 August 7, 2013“Participants in the last 2 workshops worked on light weight earth cast panels as part of their Phoenix field trips.Each panel was cast on a curved earth form which was carved and painted with concrete pigment shortly before the concrete was cast.[photos by Aimee Madsen, text by Roger Tomalty]
In 1946, an American singer, Merle Travis, recorded a song called “Sixteen Tons.” The song told the story of a poor coal miner in Kentucky, who lived in a small coal mining town. The town’s economy revolved entirely around the mine.c The mining company owned a “company store,” which had a monopoly on the sale of provisions. It charged rates that were designed to use up the weekly paycheque of the miner, so that the miner, in effect, was a slave to the mining company. As the song states, You load sixteen tons, what do you get Another day older and deeper in debt Saint Peter don’t you call me ’cause I can’t go I owe my soul to the company store Negative Interest Rates Let’s put the song aside for the moment and have a look at a concept that has been bandied about by the European Central Bank (ECB) for a while now. Since the collapse of the central banks would doom the world (their claim, not mine), it is essential that the banks be saved no matter what else must be sacrificed. Efforts to “save” the situation have been implemented through quantitative easing (QE) and the setting and continuation of low interest rates. Unfortunately, in spite of record profits by banks and staggering bonuses handed out to senior bank executives, somehow the QE and low interest rates have not created the prosperity desired. The economy is still in the tank. What to do? A solution being considered is to create “negative interest rates.” Sounds logical, doesn’t it? If low interest rates have kept the economy from crashing but haven’t fixed it, surely, negative interest rates can only be more positive. And what are negative interest rates? Well, it simply means that, if you keep your money in a bank, instead of the bank paying you interest, you pay the bank to hold your money. No central bank has ever done such a thing, so, not surprisingly, it sounds like a bitter pill to swallow. However, the ECB will present it as an “unfortunate necessity.” Electronic Currency Let’s once again change subjects for the moment. If the fiat currencies, such as the euro and the dollar, collapse (as I believe is all but inevitable), the EU and US are likely to immediately come up with an alternate currency (or currencies), since if an alternative is not made readily available, people will turn to whatever currency is handy in order to be able to continue to purchase goods and to trade. We are in the electronic age. We are also seeing the EU and US heading in a direction that is marked with increasing controls on the capital held by their citizens. Therefore, the ideal currency would be an electronic one. No more paper notes in the wallet, no more coins in the pocket; just a plastic debit card to take care of all purchases. All purchases. Whether the purchaser buys something as major as a car or as insignificant as a Cadbury bar, the card would be used for every monetary transaction. This, of course, is a handy solution to the fuss of dealing with what was formerly regarded as money. But there is an extra advantage—quite a major one, in fact—to the government. It now has a record of every single transaction that you make. There could be no “under the table” transactions, as only the debit card would represent currency. Of course, a bank would be needed to handle the transactions. The bank would receive your electronic paycheck directly from your employer, and you would spend what you had in your account. The bank would be the central clearing house though which all your financial transactions took place. An extra advantage to the government would be that they would no longer need to chase their citizens for taxation. Since they had a full record of every penny you earned and spent, they could advise you of the amount of your tax obligation and simply deduct it periodically. If you presently pay tax annually, the deductions could be broken up—say, monthly, or even weekly. And the tax need not be under one heading. Just as your bank now lists a host of confusing charges on your credit card, so the government may have a wide variety of confusing and even redundant taxes that it deducts on a regular basis. Just as with the bank, the rates for each tax might go up or down (but mostly up) without explanation. (The more numerous the tax categories and the greater the frequency of deductions, the more confusion and, therefore, the fewer the complaints.) How Does All This Fit Together? Let’s go back to the ECB. If a negative interest rate exists, the bank no longer pays you interest to encourage you to keep your money with them. They now control all your monetary transactions, and you cannot function without them. The servant has become the master. Therefore, it would not be possible to cease to use the bank for your transactions, should their “negative interest rates” start to climb. At this point, the government and the bank would, between them, control your money totally. You would find yourself, in effect, “owned by the company store.” It’s even possible that bank fees and tax rates could be increased as your income increased, so that you might never be able to truly save money, invest, or indeed, act independently of your “owners.” The flow of your money would have become centralised, and you could not function without them. Of course, this is all theory. Surely, this could not come to pass, because people inherently do not wish to be enslaved. And yet it happened on a wholesale basis in Kentucky and other mining areas in the US. So the question really is, “How did it become possible that people in mining towns volunteered for their own slavery?” First there was a depression. Many people lost their jobs and their incomes and were prepared to do anything in order to feed their families. So they signed up for the only game in town: the mines. It was dangerous work, there were no benefits, and the coal dust would kill a miner after a time. But as long as he lived, his family had enough to eat. He accepted the deal, because (again) it was the only game in town. So, back to the present day, where the Greater Depression will soon be on us in full force. A large percentage of jobs will be destroyed, but in addition, this time around, the currency will also be destroyed. In order to pay for goods, particularly food, people will do whatever they have to, to obtain currency. Desperate times, indeed. But there’s a light at the end of the tunnel! The government has chosen to eliminate bank notes and coins, as they ultimately proved to be so destructive. Never again will this be allowed to happen. The new Electronic Currency System will ensure that all money is centrally managed. The press will declare the new system brilliant, and the harder an individual has been hit by the Greater Depression, the more quickly he will jump on board. The greedy rich have all but destroyed his life, and his government, like a knight in shining armour, has come to save him. Like the miner, he will not be musing on how this will all play out over the decades; he will opt for the promise of relief for his family now. If this all plays out as described above, it will not be just Kentucky, but entire nations. Editor’s note: The day after this article was written, the ECB announced the introduction of a negative interest rate: 0.1% on deposits. As predicted, the media have already begun to the praise the measure. To see what the consequences of economic mismanagement can be, and how stealthily disaster can creep up on you, watch the 30-minute documentary, Meltdown America. Witness the harrowing tales of three ordinary people who lived through a crisis, and how their experiences warn of the turmoil that could soon reach the US. Click here to watch it now.
Welcome to a new season of Invisibilia! The NPR program and podcast explores the invisible forces that shape human behavior. Episode 3 involves two brothers who are happy about the polite, helpful tenant who moves into their mother’s house, until they start to suspect he has sinister motives. Here at Shots, we are exploring the main theme of the story — the things left unsaid, and the havoc they can cause on your personal relationships — with an essay by behavioral scientist Nicholas Epley.The average human brain contains roughly 100 billion neurons, each of which is attached to thousands of other neurons, meaning that another person’s brain is likely to be the most complicated thing you will ever think about. And yet, despite this dizzying complexity, you and I routinely guess what’s going on in the mind of other people almost as easily as we breathe.It takes only a split second to form an impression about another person’s intelligence or intentions, guess what our spouse or a homeless person is feeling, and predict what a political opponent is thinking. You can even leap quickly to conclusions about people in situations you’ve never experienced before, from what’s going on in the mind of our president to the mind of a homeless person begging for food. Making judgments about another person’s mind is easy. Making judgments accurately, however, is hard. In fact, our research indicates that it is surprisingly hard.Consider, for instance, an experiment that Tal Eyal, Mary Steffel and I conducted that put people’s beliefs about their mind reading abilities to the test. We recruited people who we thought would know something about each other, namely romantic couples. These couples had been together for an average of 10 years. Fifty-eight percent were married.One person in each couple played the role of Responder, reading 20 statements and reporting how much he or she agreed with each one on a scale ranging from minus 3 (strongly disagree) to 3 (strongly agree). These statements included, “I would like to spend a year in London or Paris,” “I would rather spend a quiet evening at home rather than go out to a party,” and “Our family is too heavily in debt today.”The other member of each couple played the role of Predictor, guessing how his or her partner would respond to each statement, and also predicting how many of the statements he or she guessed correctly. Think of this as something like The Newlywed Game for science.Our Predictors believed they guessed an average of 13 items out of 20 exactly correctly. In truth, the task was much harder than our predictors expected. They actually guessed only five, on average, correctly.The problem with our inferences about others is not incompetence, but hubris. We tend to think we understand each other better than we actually do.So what’s a person trying to understand the most complicated thing on this planet to do? Dale Carnegie offered a suggestion in 1936: Principle 8. In what has become the Bible of social relations, How to Win Friends and Influence People, Carnegie describes his eighth principle as a method that will “work wonders” for you: “Try honestly to see things from the other person’s point of view.” That is, do some perspective-taking.Even if you never read Carnegie’s book, his suggestion has a powerful ring of common sense to it. Indeed, the vast majority of people we surveyed predicted that actively adopting another person’s perspective would help them understand another person better in a variety of ways, from understanding another person’s reaction when looking at a picture to predicting movie preferences.Our research, however, suggests that this bit of common sense is at least somewhat mistaken. When we tested the impact of perspective-taking on accuracy in a series of 25 experiments we recently published, we found no evidence that actively considering another person’s perspective systematically increased accuracy.If anything, perspective-taking tended to decrease accuracy, including in the romantic couples study I described earlier. This experiment included another condition in which one member of each couple was asked to put themselves in their partner’s shoes before predicting their partner’s responses. This perspective-taking actually decreased accuracy compared to the control group I already described, but it slightly increased the number of items these perspective-takers thought they had predicted correctly. Perspective-taking may work some wonders for your social life, but understanding another person better does not seem to be one of those wonders.Instead, accurate insight reliably comes only when you actually gain knowledge about what it is like to be another person. We refer to this as perspective-getting, as opposed to perspective-taking. The easiest way to get another’s perspective is by simply asking them to describe what’s actually going on in their minds in a context where they can report it both honestly and accurately.This solution may seem painfully obvious, but it is not so obvious to people who are in the midst of actually using it. The romantic couples study I’ve described included another condition in which predictors were given a chance to ask their partner to report their feelings about each of the statements before predicting how he or she would respond. This increased accuracy dramatically, even though those who asked did not have any more confidence in the accuracy of their judgments than those who guessed their partners’ reactions. Even those who take the right approach to understanding the mind of another person — asking directly and listening carefully — seem unaware of how much they had learned.True insight into the minds of others is not likely to come from honing your powers of intuition, but rather by learning to stop guessing about what’s on the mind of another person and learning to listen instead.Nicholas Epley is the John Templeton Keller Professor of Behavioral Science at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He is the author of Mindwise: Why We Misunderstand What Others Think, Believe, Feel, and Want. Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.
The World Health Organization said Friday that security concerns in the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s North Kivu region were preventing aid workers from reaching certain areas — and leaving open the possibility of the Ebola virus spreading.At least 1,500 people could be exposed to the virus, WHO spokesperson Tarik Jasarevic told reporters in Geneva, according to Reuters.Congo’s health ministry declared an outbreak of Ebola on Aug. 1 in the North Kivu region. As of Wednesday, the WHO reports 51 confirmed cases and 27 probable cases of Ebola in the region, with 44 people (17 confirmed, 27 probable) having died of the disease.”We don’t know if we are having all transmission chains identified. We expect to see more cases as a result of earlier infections and infection developing into illness,” Jasarevic reportedly said. “We still don’t have a full epidemiological picture. … The worst-case scenario is that we have these security blind spots where the epidemic could take hold that we don’t know about,” the wire service quoted him as saying.North Kivu — “a lawless, mineral-rich area in the northeast of the country,” as NPR’s Jason Beaubien describes it — is home to 8 million people. “Over the last decade armed groups in North Kivu have massacred civilians and each other while vying for control of the province’s deposits of gold, diamond and coltan, an ore used in cellphones and other electronics,” Beaubien reports.The WHO says the area “has been experiencing intense insecurity and worsening humanitarian crisis, with over one million internally displaced people and a continuous efflux of refugees to the neighbouring countries, including Uganda, Burundi and Tanzania.” About 1,500 miles away in the DRC’s northwest Équateur province, the WHO had just declared a previous Ebola outbreak over on July 24. It said the next day that 33 people had died in that outbreak that had been declared in early May — a relative success compared with the devastating outbreak in 2014 through 2016 in West Africa that left more than 11,300 people dead.The WHO’s response in May involved the first widespread use of the experimental Ebola vaccine rVSV-ZEBOV since testing started in 2015.On Friday, the WHO said more than 500 people, including health workers, had been vaccinated against the disease in the North Kivu outbreak. Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.
The only list that measures privately-held company performance across multiple dimensions—not just revenue. August 25, 2017 Add to Queue Email Nina Zipkin Image credit: Shutterstock –shares 2019 Entrepreneur 360 List Would You Be Thankful or Horrified If the Emails You Got While on Vacation Disappeared? Arianna Huffington really wants to make sure her employees unplug. 2 min read Next Article Americans are known for being truly terrible at taking time off. A study from careers site Glassdoor found that the average employee reported only taking 54 percent of the vacation days they had available to them. More telling is that 66 percent of those polled said that they worked while they were away.There are tons of tools out there to make your inbox a little less daunting, but if you’re always checking email, even if you’re supposed to be relaxing, that stress will still follow you to whatever beach you’ve parked yourself on.Arianna Huffington, the founder and CEO of wellness brand Thrive Global, has long been a proponent of unplugging to the point of creating on-the-nose merch — such as a $50 charging bed for your phone. Now, she’s introduced an email office tool called Thrive Away that she described in a post for Harvard Business Review.Related: The Impact Of Chronic Work Stress On Your Employees“While you’re on vacation, people who email you get a message, letting them know when you’ll be back. And then — the most important part — the tool deletes the email,” she wrote.” If the email is important, the sender can always send it again. If it’s not, then it’s not waiting for you when you get back, or even worse, tempting you to read it while you’re away.”While most companies likely won’t implement an office-wide system like Huffington’s, it’s a helpful reminder that if you don’t respond to that email right away, the world won’t come to an end. And as a business owner, if you want your employees to stay healthy and productive, it’s on you to encourage them to actually take that time away for themselves — and leave their inboxes behind. Entrepreneur Staff Staff Writer. Covers leadership, media, technology and culture. Apply Now »
Tesla Tesla Model 3 Moves to 24/7 Production Yesterday, it was revealed that Tesla intended to stop Model 3 production for up to five days. The reason given was to improve automation. However, a letter sent by Elon Musk to employees reveals the real reason for the pause in production: Tesla is upgrading the plant for round the clock production from next week.As Electrek reports, in the letter Musk confirmed that Model 3 production had reached 2,000 per week, which is double that attained in January. The goal is to reach 5,000 per week no later than June 30, but in order to achieve that and allow for a margin of error, Musk is setting the new goal of 6,000 per week by that date.Going from 2,000 to 6,000 in just over two months would be very optimistic if not for the fact Tesla is also introducing another shift to the production line, meaning the Model 3 will be manufactured 24/7 in Fremont. Tesla’s general assembly, body and paint teams will all add a third shift and require more people. Tesla is expecting to employ an extra 400 people a week for several weeks across its entire operation to help support that.The letter goes on to talk about improving the build precision of the Model 3 to exceptional standards and how Tesla needs to become profitable. With that in mind, “we will be far more rigorous about expenditures” and all contracts with third-parties will be reviewed. Musk describes the contractor situation within Tesla as being like a “Russian nesting doll” and that some perform “worse than a drunken sloth.” So expect some big changes on that front soon.There’s a suggestion of one more pause in production during May for further upgrades, but beyond that Model 3 production just got serious. Six-thousand by the end of June does indeed look achievable if 24/7 production works without a hitch. That also means the dual motor version could still happen in July. Next Article Fireside Chat | July 25: Three Surprising Ways to Build Your Brand Matthew Humphries Elon Musk is serious about reaching 6,000 cars per week by June. Learn from renowned serial entrepreneur David Meltzer how to find your frequency in order to stand out from your competitors and build a brand that is authentic, lasting and impactful. Image credit: via PC Mag Add to Queue This story originally appeared on PCMag –shares Senior Editor 2 min read April 18, 2018 Enroll Now for $5
Add to Queue Reuters Image credit: Salesforce June 1, 2016 Register Now » This story originally appeared on Reuters Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. Next Article Salesforce –shares Salesforce to Buy Demandware for About $2.8 Billion Cloud-based software maker Salesforce.com Inc. said it would buy Demandware Inc., whose software is used by businesses to run ecommerce websites, for about $2.8 billion.The deal will help Salesforce open a new front as it look to take away more market share from traditional software providers such as Oracle Corp. and SAP AG, both of which already offer cloud-based ecommerce services.The ecommerce market has been growing at a blistering pace as retailers expand their online presence, boosting demand for software that helps manage functions such as payment processing and inventory management.Salesforce’s cash offer of $75 per share represents a 56.3 percent premium to Demandware’s Tuesday closing.Demandware’s shares, which have fallen about 21 percent in the past year, were up 52.1 percent at $73 in premarket trading on Wednesday. Shares of Salesforce, considered a barometer for the cloud-computing industry, slipped 2 percent.Demandware, whose customers include Lands’ End Inc., L’Oreal SA and Marks and Spencer Group Plc., has reported sales growth of more than 30 percent for the last 10 quarters.Global spending on digital commerce platforms is expected to grow over 14 percent annually to about $8.5 billion by 2020, Salesforce said, citing research firm Gartner.The deal, slated to close in Salesforce’s second quarter ending July, is expected to increase the company’s 2017 revenue by about $100 million-$120 million.Salesforce had forecast fiscal 2017 revenue of $8.16 billion-$8.2 billion in May.BofA Merrill Lynch is Salesforce’s financial adviser for the deal, while Goldman Sachs is advising Demandware.(Reporting by Anya George Tharakan and Kshitiz Goliya in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty) 2 min read Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals
GetResponse Expands Turnkey Marketing Platform with Powerful Webinar, eCommerce, Online Payments, and Social Ad Integration Capabilities Business WireJuly 2, 2019, 2:09 pmJuly 2, 2019 ecommerceemail marketingGetResponseNewsSocial Ad IntegrationTurnkey Marketing Platform Previous ArticleConversocial Promotes Ido Bornstein-HaCohen to Chief Executive OfficerNext ArticleVonage and Freshworks Enhance Customer Experience Via Multichannel Communications Integrates with Facebook, PrestaShop, Square, and WooCommerce to Strengthen Inbound/Outbound Marketing PlatformGetResponse, the global innovator in digital and email marketing, announced that its all-in-one marketing platform now features enhanced webinar and e-commerce capabilities, a new online payments gateway, and direct integration with social ads.Since GetResponse is a complete inbound and outbound marketing platform, customers can centralize, manage and analyze integrated campaigns using advertising, email, landing pages, social media, webinars, and e-commerce. This results in stronger campaign performance while saving customers time and the cost of having to purchase separate marketing solutions.The new webinar capabilities are the result of extensive development efforts to further enhance the platform. The fully responsive webinar layout features a fresh modern design that delivers supreme audio and video with support for HD streaming, advanced chat and Q&A management, recorder templates, livestreaming on Facebook and YouTube, and customizable calls to action.Marketing Technology News: Digital Communication Tools Leave Many Workers Feeling Squeezed out by Tech-Savvy ColleaguesAdditionally, GetResponse has strengthened its integration with industry leaders including PrestaShop and WooCommerce for e-Commerce, Square for secure online payments, and Facebook for ad integration. These features are directly in GetResponse, enabling customers to easily identify their target audience and create and execute marketing campaigns from a centralized marketing platform.“GetResponse continues to stay one step ahead of the needs of its customers and today’s news of its increasingly more powerful marketing platform further demonstrates their commitment to making it easy to attract, engage and convert customers,” said Ian Cleary, CEO, Razor Social.Marketing Technology News: Selligent Marketing Cloud Study Reveal Digital Marketers Struggle to Deliver Consistent Omnichannel ExperiencesGetResponse customers that want to take advantage of the platform’s new capabilities can log on to their account and select the tools they need. For Facebook ads, users simply upload their ad, select their audience and budget and GetResponse does the rest. The advanced analytics capabilities make it easy to monitor progress and results. Additionally, GetResponse offers new customers a free 30-day trial.“Building on the success of our new Autofunnel offering, we’re delighted to continue to expand our platform’s features,” said Daniel Brzezinski, COO, GetResponse. “These new features provide marketers with an even more powerful turnkey solution for attracting, engaging and converting customers.Marketing Technology News: Aprimo Recognized as Winner for 2019 Microsoft Media & Communications Partner of the Year
email marketingEmail Testing SoftwareLitmusMarketing Technology NewsNewsPersonally Identifiable Information Previous ArticleQuadrant Audiences Launches Offering Highly-Targeted Audience Insights in Asia PacificNext ArticleTBWA\Media Arts Lab Appoints Ricardo Adolfo as Executive Creative Director for Japan and Korea Litmus Adds Cloud Storage Integration with Dropbox, Google Drive, and Microsoft OneDrive PRNewswire9 hours agoJuly 23, 2019 Award-Winning Email Platform Now Imports HTML Email Design Files from Leading Cloud-Storage Solutions, Saving Time and Eliminating Errors for Email MarketersLitmus, a leader in email marketing and analytics, announced several new updates to its email platform, including the ability to import email design files from leading cloud storage solutions, expanded privacy protections, and enhancements to custom email tracking. The company also announced that its platform was recently named Spring Leader 2019 by G2 Crowd in the category of Email Testing Software, receiving positive user feedback and above-average scores for both ease of setup and ease of use.“We continue to expand the capabilities of the Litmus platform to deliver an integrated and best-in-class email marketing solution for our customers,” said Richard Yu, senior vice president of product, Litmus. “These new collaboration features and enhancements make it even easier for our customers to efficiently design and test their email campaigns, and to gather critical insights from post-send analytics.”“At Dropbox, it’s our priority to bring content, tools, and teams together, by organizing your content, bringing context to your work, and giving everyone a place to get work done,” said Abhishek Lahoti, business development executive at Dropbox. “Email is a core communication tool for most marketing organizations, so we’re pleased to partner with Litmus to enable marketers to collaborate more efficiently and execute effective campaigns faster.”Marketing Technology News: James Liu Appointed to Board of Directors of Opera LimitedThe Litmus platform and the new features span the full email marketing cycle—from pre-send design to testing and post-send analytics. The new features, as well as recently announced accessibility functionality, make marketing campaigns more inclusive and extend the value of the Litmus platform while maintaining its hallmark ease of use.Cloud Storage IntegrationLitmus users can now import their hypertext markup language (HTML) email files from popular cloud file storage solutions such as Dropbox, Google Drive, and Microsoft OneDrive. By importing these directly into Litmus, users save time and avoid copy-and-paste errors. The import feature streamlines workflow at several steps along the way, including Builder, Proof, and Checklist — and ensures users are always working with the latest files. Review and approval cycles are simplified, and testing checklists are quickly created without the need to switch between platforms.Privacy Protections and Custom TrackingMarketers can now protect subscribers’ personally identifiable information (PII) while still gathering actionable insights via meaningful tags and parameters. The new functionality enables users to disable email fields that collect PII and replace those with unique tracking codes for every email, along with defined campaign timeframes and expiration dates. This enables Litmus users to track email metrics at the subscriber level and better identify which emails are making the biggest impact.Marketing Technology News: Adobe Survey Says That Voice and Screen Combined Are the FutureG2 Spring Leader AccoladeThe G2 Leader badge is based on independent tech reviewers who have identified Litmus as a leading email marketing and testing solution. Litmus achieved the highest satisfaction scores in its product category, with above-average scores for both ease of setup and ease of use. The satisfaction rating is derived from independent and authentic user reviews, factoring in multiple rankings across product features, administrative services, and Net Promoter Score (NPS). G2 applies a unique algorithm to each review, analyzing and weighting reviews in terms of popularity, thoroughness, and age. Products in the leader quadrant are rated highly by G2 Crowd users and have substantial market presence scoresMarketing Technology News: OpenText Automates Invoicing for Rosneft Deutschland
The study from Western Sydney University, looked at 16 clinical trials that analyzed 45,826 people who had modified their diets to alleviate their symptoms of depression and anxiety. The clinical trials were from a more than one nation including Australia, Brazil, Canada, Italy and the UK. Lead researcher Dr Joseph Firth from Western Sydney University said that the major change that their diets involved was reducing “junk food intake” and replacing high fat and high sugar foods with foods that are rich in nutrients and fibres such as fruits and vegetables. Dr Firth said, “We took a bit of a close look at the data and interestingly found there was no significant differences in the types of diets used… Weight loss diets were just as effective as nutrient boosting diets.” This means that no “extreme diets” are necessary for depression, he explained. What is needed is a change in the basics he said. Dr. Firth added that the study did not find a beneficial effect of diets on anxiety disorders and women with depression were found to benefit more with an altered diet than men.Related StoriesSome children are at greater risk of ongoing depression long after being bulliedNew structured approach to managing patients with depression in primary careStudy reveals link between inflammatory diet and colorectal cancer riskDr. Firth said that there have been studies showing that regular exercise can have a protective effect against depression. This is the first study to prove that a healthy diet can also play a role in reducing the symptoms of depression. He explained that an average Australian individual consumes around 19 servings of junk food per week and much less amount of the recommended fruits, vegetables and whole grains that are rich in nutrients and fibre.The authors emphasize that diet is not a replacement to tested and accepted treatments of depressive illness including medications and psychotherapy. However diets can be an additional remedy they said. They call for public health campaigns to emphasize upon healthy diet and its effects on the mental health. “Public health schemes are trying to improve people’s diets and looking at the physical health outcomes… and focusing on combating things like obesity… They should also pay attention to actual positive mental health outcomes that could occur and improve people’s diets on a large scale to fix people’s psychological well being,” Dr. Firth said.“Thus, depressive disorders incur considerable burden not only for individuals, but also for society due to the high economic cost from lost productivity and demand on healthcare services,” The authors write. Authors add that dietary interventions could be a “novel” approach to depression and conclude, “Future research is required to determine the specific components of dietary interventions that improve mental health, explore underlying mechanisms, and establish effective schemes for delivering these interventions in clinical and public health settings.”In 2017 and 2018, there has been a rise in depressive illness with at least one in five Australian experiencing a mental illness (13.1 per cent had anxiety and 10.4 per cent felt depressed). Women were more vulnerable than men, say reports. A healthy balanced diet. Image Credit: Syda Productions / Shutterstock By Dr. Ananya Mandal, MDFeb 5 2019It has been speculated earlier that a healthy diet can raise the mood and reduce symptoms of mild depression. A new study proves the cause and effect of healthy diet and improved symptoms of depression.The results of the new study titled, “The effects of dietary improvement on symptoms of depression and anxiety: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials,” was published this week in the latest issue of the journal Psychosomatic Medicine. Source:https://insights.ovid.com/crossref?an=00006842-900000000-98656
Fox says Disney may buy Sky News in fresh takeover twist This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. 21st Century Fox is seeking to buy the 61 percent of Sky that it does not own for £11.4 billion but the long-running saga has been plagued by fears over media plurality and broadcasting standards Britain gave the edge Tuesday to US cable giant Comcast in a multi-billion-pound takeover battle with Rupert Murdoch’s entertainment titan 21st Century Fox for pan-European TV group Sky. Explore further Citation: UK hands Comcast advantage in Sky takeover tussle with Fox (2018, June 5) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-06-uk-comcast-advantage-sky-takeover.html © 2018 AFP Culture Secretary Matt Hancock announced that he has cleared Comcast’s £22-billion ($29.4-billion, 25.1-billion-euro) bid for all of Sky, setting the stage for a potential bidding war.Sky, which is best known for its live coverage of English Premier League football, has long been a jewel in the crown of media magnate Murdoch.”I have concluded that the proposed merger does not raise public interest concerns and so I can confirm today that I will not be issuing an intervention notice,” Conservative Party minister Hancock told parliament.However, turning to Fox’s lower offer per share for the 61 percent of Sky it does not already own, Hancock added he favoured “divesting Sky News” to a suitable third party to address public interest concerns identified by regulators, before giving it the nod.Fox is seeking to buy the 61 percent of Sky that it does not own for £11.4 billion but the long-running saga has been plagued by fears over media plurality and broadcasting standards—and the increasing influence of Australian-born US citizen Murdoch.’Bidding war on horizon’Deputy leader of the main opposition Labour party, Tom Watson, who is a vocal critic of Murdoch, urged Hancock to “protect the interests of the public”.He said: “With Comcast now in the ring, the future for Sky is uncertain. A bidding war is on the horizon.”New York-listed Fox had already proposed in April to sell rolling TV news channel Sky News to Disney to finally clinch its takeover of Sky. Comcast, which itself had lost out to Disney last year in an effort to buy 21st Century Fox, had last month formalised its Sky cash bid.Hancock made his announcement in light of a final report from Britain’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA). The regulator again raised the possibility of “increased influence of the Murdoch Family Trust over public opinion and the UK’s political agenda”, should Fox win control of Sky News.”The CMA concluded in line with its interim findings that the merger may not be expected to operate against the public interest on the grounds of a genuine commitment to broadcasting standards,” Hancock said.He added: “I agree with the CMA that divesting Sky News to Disney, as proposed by Fox, or to an alternative suitable buyer, with an agreement to ensure it is funded for at least ten years, is likely to be the most proportionate and effective remedy for the public interest concerns that have been identified.”Consultation periodThere will now be a 15-day consultation period to finalise details of the Sky News divestment before Hancock reaches his final decision on the Fox deal.However, he also warned that—should a Sky News sale not be attainable—then his “only effective remedy would be to block the merger altogether”.Earlier this year, the CMA had provisionally ruled that Murdoch’s planned takeover was not in the public interest on media plurality concerns.Murdoch owns also major British newspaper titles The Times and The Sun.Comcast’s superior cash offer values each Sky share at £12.50, which is significantly higher to Fox’s offer price of £10.75.Back in 2011, Murdoch failed to buy the British pay-TV group, then known as BSkyB, owing to a phone-hacking scandal at his now-defunct News of the World tabloid newspaper.
Citation: Amazon hits trillion-dollar milestone with focus on the long game (Update) (2018, September 4) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-09-amazon-tops-trillion-stock.html Amazon Spheres, in Seattle, Washington, is part of the home of the online giant, which is seeking a second North American headquarters Explore further Amazon CEO and founder Jeff Bezos, seen with his wife MacKenzie Bezos, has become the world’s richest person based on his company stake but has also created a private space exploration firm and has purchased the Washington Post newspaper Amazon’s market value hit $1 trillion on Tuesday, the second company after Apple to hit the milestone, following an incredible journey for the internet giant which has kept a long-term focus since launching as an online bookseller two decades ago. For example, Amazon’s lucrative cloud computing business is built on technology infrastructure that the company needed to run its own operations.Investing in warehouses, trucking, drones, shipping and other distribution systems not only enables Amazon to drive down costs they position the company to compete with the likes of FedEx and UPS.Buying the Whole Foods grocery chain last year got Amazon established real world outlets while putting its delivery and retail smarts and systems to work in the brick-and-mortar world.Drugs and digital adsPrescription medicine would be a natural market for Amazon to expand into, according to Enderle. Meanwhile, Amazon is reportedly beefing up its digital advertising business to better compete in an online ad market dominated by Google and Facebook.In the past quarter, Amazon posted its best-ever profit of $2.5 billion as Bezos, whose stake in the company has made him the richest person, highlighted the importance of digital assistant Alexa that powers Amazon electronics along with cars, appliances and other connected devices. According to the research firm eMarketer, Amazon’s e-commerce revenue will grow more than 28 percent this year to reach $394 billion, and will account for 49 percent of US online retail sales and nearly five percent of all retail spending.One of Amazon’s revenue drivers is its Prime subscription service which offers streaming video and music, free delivery and other perks and which has more than 100 million members worldwide.Arrogance trapSome fear Amazon is becoming too dominant a force, especially in retail, sparking antitrust discussion even as the company keeps expanding globally and searches for a second headquarters in North America.”It wasn’t that long ago that people were freaking out about Walmart, and Amazon basically stepped on Walmart,” analyst Enderle said.”What Amazon means is disruption and people don’t like to be disrupted.”Critics of the company include US President Donald Trump, who has expressed ire at the Bezos-owned Washington Post newspaper that has published stories the president didn’t like.Bezos bought the Washington Post five years ago for $250 million from his personal funds.While his skills could be advantageous in the content-oriented business, getting into news comes with the risk of displeasing politicians.”The Post was a mistake because it results in him going to war with people he wouldn’t otherwise go to war with,” Enderle said.Amazon’s huge cloud computing segment powers systems for government clients, and contracts could be influenced by politics.Amazon must also guard against the kind of arrogance that can undo companies that come to dominate markets, according to the analyst.”If Amazon does have a downfall, it will be arrogance in dealing with the customer,” Enderle said. Amazon powers up profits as footprint grows Early gains lifted Amazon’s value to $1 trillion only briefly, with the final close at $2,039.51 giving it a value of $995 billion.Amazon’s journey from an online bookseller in a garage to a global e-commerce powerhouse has centered on obsession with the long road.The company initially incorporated as “Cadabra” by Jeff Bezos in 1994 and backed with money borrowed from his parents joined Apple as the second US technology firm to be valued at $1 trillion on Tuesday.Apple crossed the trillion-dollar value threshold a month ago and has remained above it. Amazon became the second US company at that eye-popping value.GlobalData Retail managing director Neil Saunders called Amazon’s valuation achievement “extraordinary” and considered it a sign of the company’s potential.”Despite its size and scale, there is still something young about Amazon,” Saunders said.”Amazon is really only just getting started.”Created in a garage in a suburb of Seattle, Washington, the company renamed “Amazon” sold its first book—Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies: Computer Models of the Fundamental Mechanisms of Thought by Douglas Hofstadter—in mid-1995.By the end of that year, Amazon was selling books online throughout the US. Amazon went public in early 1997.The company for more than a decade put growth over profit, investing heavily in warehouses, distribution networks, and data centers.”Every cent they made they put back in the company,” said independent technology analyst Rob Enderle. “They kept their eye on the prize, which was initially to take over most of commerce.”Innovation sans scandalSaunders said Amazon’s success comes from the fact that it innovates unlike any other.”This heady pace of creativity is the key reason why it stays several steps ahead of the market and is able to generate so much growth,” Saunders said.Bezos has kept firm control of Amazon, steering clear of hedge fund investors inclined to short-term tactics aimed at getting share prices to jump.The founder and chief executive also avoided scandals or other distractions, keeping revenue and costs close enough to manage and easing into “adjacent markets” that play into Amazon strengths or interests, according to Enderle. © 2018 AFP Amazon has expanded from its modest origins two decades ago as an online bookseller to a global powerhouse worth $1 trillion This document is subject to copyright. 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GE shares at 9-year low amid latest power woes The company postponed the release by a week “to allow GE Chairman and CEO Larry Culp to complete initial business reviews and site visits following his appointment on October 1,” it said in a statement The company postponed the release by a week “to allow GE Chairman and CEO Larry Culp to complete initial business reviews and site visits following his appointment on October 1,” it said in a statement.”The company will discuss the results for the third quarter ending September 30, 2018. Culp will share his initial observations, with more detail expected in early 2019.”H. Lawrence “Larry” Culp, 55, is GE’s third CEO in 14 months following the ouster of John Flannery.In announcing Culp’s rise, the company, which was bumped from the prestigious Dow Jones Industrial Average in June, cited his history as chief executive of the industrial and healthcare conglomerate Danaher, where GE said he presided over a quintupling of market capitalization. Culp was named to the GE board earlier this year.GE’s other bombshell was that it planned to write down effectively up to $23 billion in value from its troubled power business, the prime catalyst of its nosedive in stock market valuation. Citation: GE pushes back Q3 earnings release to October 30 (2018, October 13) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-10-ge-q3-october.html General Electric, the once-mighty conglomerate which weeks ago announced a new chief executive in a move meant to stem a two-year decline, has said it will move the date of its third-quarter earnings release to October 30. © 2018 AFP Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. A new research project at Rochester Institute of Technology will help ensure the endangered language of the Seneca Indian Nation will be preserved. Using deep learning, a form of artificial intelligence, RIT researchers are building an automatic speech recognition application to document and transcribe the traditional language of the Seneca people. The work is also intended to be a technological resource to preserve other rare or vanishing languages. “The motivation for this is personal. The first step in the preservation and revitalization of our language is documentation of it,” said Robert Jimerson (Seneca), a computing and information sciences doctoral student at RIT and member of the research team. He brought together tribal elders and close friends, all speakers of Seneca, to help produce audio and textual documentation of this Native American language spoken fluently by fewer than 50 individuals.Like all languages, Seneca has different dialects. It also presents unique challenges because of its complex system for building new words, in which a whole sentence can be expressed in a single word.Jimerson is able to bridge both the technology and the language.”Under the hood, it is data. With many Native languages, you don’t have that volume of data,” he said, explaining that some languages, while spoken, may not have as many formal linguistical tools—dictionaries, grammatical materials or extensive classes for non-native speakers, similar to those for Spanish or Chinese. “One of the most expensive and time-consuming processes of documenting language is collecting and transcribing it. We are looking at taking deep networks and maybe changing the architecture, making some synthetic data to create more data, but how do you make this work in deep learning? How do you augment data you already have?”That process of attaining data is being coordinated by a wide-ranging team that includes Jimerson; the project principal investigator Emily Prud’hommeaux, assistant professor of computer science at Boston College and research faculty in RIT’s College of Liberal Arts; Ray Ptucha, assistant professor of computer engineering in RIT’s Kate Gleason College of Engineering and an expert in deep learning systems and technologies; and Karen Michaelson, professor of linguistics, the State University of New York at Buffalo. The research team was awarded $181, 682 in funding over four years from the National Science Foundation for “Collaborative Research: Deep learning speech recognition for document Seneca and other acutely under-resourced languages.” “This is an exciting project because it brings together people from so many disciplines and backgrounds, from engineering and computer science to linguistics and language pedagogy,” said Prud’hommeaux. “In addition to enabling us to develop cutting edge technology, this project supports undergraduate and graduate students and engages members of an indigenous community that few people know is right here in western New York.”The researchers started the project in late June, bringing together the community members and linguists for data collection—acquiring and translating current and new, original recordings of Seneca conversations then converting data into textual output using deep learning models.”What you are really trying to do is find that line between the new data you can get and the changing of the architecture of a network,” Jimerson explained.Since the summer, the team has just over 50 hours of recorded material with people working full time on the translations that include breaking down the language into individual phonetic symbols and using this information to begin training the models.”We use a process called transfer learning which starts with a model trained with readily available English speech to get the basic, initial training for the system, then we’ll re-train the neural networks and fine tune it toward the Seneca language. We’re getting very good results,” said Ptucha, who is an expert in deep learning systems and technologies. Deep learning technology consists of multiple layers of artificial neurons, organized in an increasingly abstract hierarchy. These architectures have produced state-of-the-art results on all types of pattern recognition problems including image and speech recognition applications.”No one has really tried this before, training an automated speech recognition model on something as resource-constrained as Seneca. Robbie is the expert in transcribing Seneca and training the others on how to do this. He’s a pretty rare guy, ” said Ptucha,This current project is a continuation of Jimerson’s work to expand the language resources available to his community. In 2013, while he was a graduate student in RIT’s Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences, he developed an online Seneca language translation dictionary for the Seneca Language Revitalization Program. The project was funded by the Seneca Nation and awarded to RIT’s Future Steward’s Program. Left to right, Ray Ptucha, computer engineering assistant professor, Robbie Jimerson, computer science doctoral student, both from RIT, and Emily Prud’hommeaux, assistant professor of computer science, are leading the NSF project to use artificial intelligence technology to preserve the Seneca language. Credit: A. Sue Weisler/RIT Using multi-task learning for low-latency speech translation Explore further Citation: Researchers use deep learning to build automatic speech recognition system to help preserve the Seneca language (2018, October 15) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-10-deep-automatic-speech-recognition-seneca.html Provided by Rochester Institute of Technology