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DeGale weighs in ahead of Davis clash

first_imgJames DeGale weighed in at exactly the 12-stone limit ahead of his super-middleweight clash with Dyah Davis.Harlesden’s Olympic gold medallist, 27, will be defending his WBC Silver title against the 32-year-old American, who scaled 11st 13lb 2oz.A victory would keep DeGale in line for a world title shot – a week before his arch-rival and fellow West Londoner George Groves faces champion Carl Froch.“I want to go in there and not only win but do it in style and show that I’m ready for that world title shot,” DeGale told West London Sport.“Of course it’s frustrating to see other people fight for world titles as I want to be in there mixing it with the big boys and I’m definitely ready.“But I’m on my own career path and once I get past Davis it’s down to [promoter] Mick Hennessy to get me the world title fight he has said he will.“I’m not underestimating Davis. This is a big opportunity for him and he’ll go in there determined to make the most of it.“The way I’m feeling though, I just can’t see him lasting 12 rounds. I’m looking to put on a show.”Davis, who was stopped in the 10th round by the WBC’s world champion Sakio Bika last year, insists he will upset the odds and put himself back in the frame for major fights.“I was ranked number three and my aim is to get back there,” Davis said.“DeGale is talking about his plans for the future but I have my own plans and am in the best shape I’ve ever been in.“I’m a boxer-puncher who comes to fight and is ready to take care of business – and that’s what I plan on doing.”Tickets for DeGale v Davis at Glow, Bluewater, on 16 November are priced from £40 and are available from the Hennessy Sports Box Office on 01925 755 222, at http://hennessy.ticketline.co.uk or alternatively by contacting Tickeline.co.uk or by phone on 0844 888 4402 or via Ticketmaster.co.uk or by phone on 0844 847 2500.  See also:DeGale wants Groves clash at Loftus RoadDeGale to take on American DavisDeGale out to prove a point against DavisInjury-free DeGale determined to impressDeGale given warning by opponent Davis American Davis arrives for DeGale clashDeGale must prove he is ready for world title shot, says promoterTrainer says DeGale is ‘a million per cent ready’ for world title challengeConfident DeGale predicts ‘explosive’ winUnderdog Davis is determined to cause an upset against DeGalePromoter vows to deliver DeGale title fightJames DeGale v Dyah Davis as it 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 Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

Warriors mailbag: Warriors might make adjustments in Game 6

first_imgKlay Thompson subscribes. You can too for just 11 cents a day for 11 months + receive a free Warriors Championship book. Sign me up!LOS ANGELES — Should the Warriors make adjustments? Or should they just execute their game plan better?It’s an interesting thought that most NBA playoff teams wrestle with between games. After all, coaches often argue outcomes usually have to do more with effort than schemes.So when the Warriors play the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 6 of their first-round series …last_img read more

The Science Axis of Evil

first_imgBy assuming misbehavior evolves, some scientists become agents of evil, and Big Science institutions become their enablers.Take any behavior that the Bible condemns, and you will find a scientist saying it’s not so bad—maybe even good. Failing to find bad consequences in their research, they assume that engaging in certain evil deeds can be justifiable in some contexts. In other cases, they rationalize behaviors traditionally considered evil, thinking that humans are mere products of evolutionary heredity or environment.In their misguided belief that science can be morally neutral, they become Satan’s tools to corrupt society. Here are some recent examples.Polygamy: After homosexual activists gained national acceptance beyond their wildest dreams, conservatives worried that other sexually deviant groups, like polygamists, would push the envelope. “That will never happen,” defenders in the mainstream media reassured the worry warts. Well, check out this paper in PNAS: “No evidence that polygynous marriage is a harmful cultural practice in northern Tanzania.” The rationalization is that if nobody gets hurt, it must be OK.  Why, it’s even good in some situations:These results support models of polygyny based on female choice and suggest that, in some contexts, prohibiting polygyny could be costly for women and children by restricting marital options. Our study highlights the dangers of naive analyses of aggregated population data and the importance of considering locally realizable alternatives and context dependency when considering the health implications of cultural practices.Satan could hardly have said it better. It follows his pattern when he tempted Eve; “you will not surely die,” he said; “your eyes will be opened.” Now he tempts moderns wanting multiple partners with the tool of evolutionary psychology. If it can be good in Tanzania, why not in France or America?Sadly, there are no science reporters expressing outrage or even doubt at this suggestion. Instead, they regurgitate “whatever science says” uncritically. PhysOrg reports, “Study suggests not all polygynous marriage is harmful to women or children.” Science Daily notes that even the UN Human Rights Committee decries the practice, along with other women’s rights organizations. Yet its headline reads, “Often decried, polygyny may sometimes have advantages.” And how, exactly, did the anthropologists at UC Davis justify that conclusion? Feminists, prepare to cringe:These findings support evolutionary anthropological accounts of marriage indicating that polygyny can be in a woman’s strategic interest when women depend on men for resources.Shacking up: The institution of traditional marriage is already in such shambles that attempts to restore its honor would take years. Leave it to scientists to help the rubble bounce with another nuclear family blast. Ohio State gives Science Daily this license for licentiousness:  “Live together or get married? Study finds similar emotional benefits. Second unions also offer mental health boost.” They’re not only saying it’s OK; they’re actually encouraging it! Their study shows women doing just fine in cohabitation, and men actually experiencing “a drop in emotional distress” when they skip marriage and shack up. But of course! It’s stressful being responsible. Yielding to temptation is always the easier way. Listen to them preach:“At one time marriage may have been seen as the only way for young couples to get the social support and companionship that is important for emotional health,” Kamp Dush said.“It’s not that way anymore. We’re finding that marriage isn’t necessary to reap the benefits of living together, at least when it comes to emotional health.“What a concept: I can do whatever I feel like, if it gives me “emotional health.” Science has put its imprimatur on a subjective, nebulous, selfish feeling as a human’s overarching value in life. “Scientist” Kamp Dash, acting like a Priestess of the Church of Scientism, gives it her blessing. Stepping beyond objective research into outright advocacy, she says, “It’s not commonly known that couples can get emotional benefits from moving in together without being married. That’s something we should be talking about.”Pastors out of a job: “Should Families Going Through Divorce Have Court-Ordered Psychiatrists?” opens an Op-Ed on Live Science. With evident sincerely, divorce attorney David Mejias describes the gut-wrenching trauma divorce has on children, and considers what should be done about it. He thinks court-ordered psychiatrists would help. That may or may not work in specific cases, but what’s instructive about this article is that pastors or Bible counselors are completely ignored as an option. Society now has a new priesthood of authorized counselors: secular psychiatrists. Many of them are evolutionists, eschewing the Ten Commandments as having any authority whatsoever. They even propose to analyze “the science of giving” (Live Science), claiming that charity evolved, too—thus stripping it of its very soul. Although Mejia is a lawyer, he was granted a pulpit at Live “Science” as if his views are superior to those of Biblical counselors. Well, do secular psychiatrists and psychologists have a better empirical track record? See how well they’re doing in these previous entries: 5/10/13 and 3/20/14.Anti-choice: Regardless of how the reader feels about HPV vaccine, this headline in Nature must sound disturbing to lovers of individual liberty and personal responsibility: “The world must accept that the HPV vaccine is safe.” Why? Because “the science” says so. So much for a woman’s right to choose what to do with her own body—or a man’s or child’s right, too. “The HPV vaccine carries unique challenges,” Heidi Ledford says. “Because the first thing it prevents is sexual transmission of HPV, use of the vaccine evokes moral judgements around sexual behaviour.” Well, those unscientific reactionaries who believe in morality just need to get with the program. “Some parents are anxious that the vaccine will make their daughters more promiscuous, even though multiple studies have found no such effect.” The world “must accept” what “the science” says. All will be assimilated. And how do we know that they “found no such effect”? Because scientists are always objective truth-tellers, never influenced by politics, peer pressure or funding. Scientists, we know, have an evolved trait called “research integrity” that just emerges in their physical brains (see PhysOrg).Go ahead, butcher babies for science: Breathes there a soul that was not appalled by CMP’s videos of Planned Parenthood officials selling baby body parts? (8/02/15) The answer is: yes. It’s the editors of Nature, the world’s leading Big Science journal, pretending to tell “The truth about fetal tissue research”. They could not deny the videos, but started their report by touting all the supposed benefits to science.Goldstein agreed to speak to Nature, he says, because “somebody has to speak up responsibly”. He stressed that he and his colleagues think hard about the ethics of their work. “We are not happy about how the material became available, but we would not be willing to see it wasted and just thrown away.”By creating a market for fetal tissue, scientists are accomplices to Planned Parenthood’s evil deeds. Goldstein might as well have used the same argument for human experimentation in Nazi Germany using the same rationale: “not happy about how the material became available… but… not willing to see it wasted”. The article goes on to repeat Planned Parenthood talking points in response to the outrage raised by the videos, worrying that the controversy might reduce the flow of baby body parts for “science”. This response is not unique to Nature (see 9/27/15, 9/20/15, 7/18/15). Finally, six months after the first video came out, Congress has crafted a bill to defund Planned Parenthood (but just for one year), knowing that the President who boasts about his support for Big Science and everything its consensus demands will undoubtedly veto it. See Family Research Council news about the bill.Update 12/10/15: Nature’s editors came out swinging to defend Planned Parenthood, scaring the Big Science community into thinking that fetal tissue research is “under threat” from Republicans who are making “repeated, inaccurate and inflammatory accusations.” Yet can those charges face up to the actual words on camera made by key Planned Parenthood officials exposed by CMP? Nature‘s editors worry that defunding Planned Parenthood would affect Big Science somehow. But that amounts to tacit admission that scientists are profiting from taxpayer funds for abortion. Otherwise, why would they care where Planned Parenthood’s money is coming from? If they argue that funding for sale of baby body parts is such a small “line item” for Planned Parenthood, why are they concerned about taxpayer funds at all? If abortion were so profitable or self-sustaining, it would seem government could keep completely out of it. Notice their complaint is not about women’s access to other health care services, but to scientists’ access to fetal tissue—the products of Planned Parenthood’s most controversial service.Nature shares the authors’ grave concerns, and joins the AAMC [Association of American Medical Colleges] in calling on US lawmakers to reject proposals that restrict access to fetal tissue.What Nature appears afraid of is more than just restrictions on fetal tissue research, but direct funding from the government for it—an even more horrific possibility. This suggests that the government is not only funding Planned Parenthood to conduct abortions, but is sending money to Big Science institutions that they are using to purchase the baby parts from Planned Parenthood. This possibility calls for some serious investigation, as it is supposed to be illegal to use aborted babies for “research”. Nature’s schizophrenic editors think the morality of abortion can be separated from research on its products. If that excuse didn’t work at the Nuremburg trials, it has no place in the modern debate.Scientific terrorism: The intrusion of scientism into society is no better illustrated than this piece in Nature: “Terrorism science: 5 insights into jihad in Europe.” Declan Butler treats this horrific subject involving good vs. evil as a matter that can be analyzed in a test tube.A mixture of sociologists, political scientists, anthropologists and psychologists, such researchers are drawing on information generated by police, judicial inquiries and the media, and, in some cases, on interviews. They also study factors at play in prisons and socially-deprived areas. Some of their insights are summarized here.Of course, the first finding is that “religion is not the trigger.” Naturally. It can’t be deliberate choice, or some other mindful cause stemming from intelligence and free will. No; it must be due to resentment, frustration and other aspects of poor emotional health, caused by low education and unemployment. With predictable political correctness, Butler warns against stigmatizing Islam. By implication, “terrorism science” is a scientific subject that should be analyzed by the recognized prophets of modern culture, the scientists. Of course, in any scientific analysis, there will always be a few outliers on the data spreadsheet. Osama Ben Laden was extremely wealthy, and the latest San Bernardino mass killer had a good paying job with co-workers who treated him respectfully, a wife and a 6-month old child. Their vicious hatred of Israel, devotion to their mosque and the Koran, and their pledge of allegiance to ISIS must have just been extraneous factors, unconnected to their actions, shooting 14 of his coworkers in cold blood at a Christmas party and building dozens of pipe bombs in their apartment.Conservatism in the test tube: Two recent papers illustrate the propensity of liberal scientists to treat their opponents as lab rats. “Conservatives negatively evaluate counter-stereotypical people to maintain a sense of certainty,” psychologists writing in PNAS conclude. In a similar vein, psychologists from Aarhus University chime, “Republicans prefer politicians with deep voices.” (Science Daily). Time to bring in the predictable authority, Charles Darwin, and follow their master’s method, the just-so story divination trance:Laustsen and Petersen’s research proceeds from the observations that in order to understand the behavior of modern humans, you need to look into the evolutionary history that has shaped the psychology producing this behavior. In prehistoric times when the ancestors of modern humans were roaming the East-African savannah in small groups, it made sense to support the strongest members of the tribe when confronted with danger. Psychological mechanisms which 30,000 years ago saved our ancestors from being devoured by saber-toothed tigers and other fierce animals continue to be at work today, explaining, among other things, why people vote as they do along the left-right continuum.“There are evolutionarily important reasons for the structure of our psychology. Our ancestors had to make a decision about which leader to follow, and it was crucial for their survival and reproduction that they picked the right one. As a species we are pre-programmed to think in a certain way about who we would like to be in charge. This affects choices that we make even today,” said Petersen.Two remarkable observations can be drawn from these examples. One is that the authors exhibit the Yoda Complex, not seeing themselves as products of evolutionary pre-programming. (That would, of course, undermine their own reasoning.) The other is that Big Science media outlets almost never print articles by conservatives analyzing liberals. One would think objective science would predict equal outcomes. There must be some reason for the asymmetry; perhaps it’s hidden in the dark matter.Secular science has completely lost its way. It has no moral compass left. It is floating on fumes from its Christian past, blown by the wind, like a hot air balloon with its burner shut off. If Islamic terrorists show up at an AAAS conference on evolutionary psychology some day, they won’t care a wooden shekel about scientific “insights” into the roots of their evolved behavior. The leaders of the Big Science institutions of power had better hope a Christian conservative with a concealed-carry permit is somewhere nearby. And if they survive, they should breathe a bit of thanks that they were not aborted for the sake of “science”. (Visited 51 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Zuma appoints Marikana commission

first_img24 August 2012President Jacob Zuma has announced the composition and terms of reference of the judicial commission of inquiry into the Marikana tragedy, calling for cooperation from all parties involved so that the country can come to a full understanding of the causes behind the tragedy.Thirty-four people were killed in clashes with the police at the mining town of Marikana near Rustenburg last Thursday. Prior to this, 10 other people – including two police officers – were killed in nearly a week of fighting between rival worker factions.A number of memorial services took place around the country on Thursday as South Africa mourned those who lost their lives and came together to show support for the families of the deceased.Addressing journalists in Pretoria on Thursday, Zuma said the commission of inquiry would be headed by Judge Ian Farlam, a retired judge of the Supreme Court of Appeal, and include advocates Bantubonke Tokota and Pingla Hemraj.In investigating the events leading up to the tragedy, the commission has been tasked with looking into the conduct of mining company Lonmin, the South African Police Service (SAPS), and the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU).Regarding Lonmin, the commission will investigate, in particular, whether the company:Exercised it best endeavours to resolve any disputes which may have risen between itself and the labour force on one hand, and generally among its labour force on the other.Responded appropriately to the threat and outbreak of violence which occurred at its premises.By act or omission, created an environment which was conducive to the creation of tension, labour unrest, disunity among its employees or other harmful conduct.Employed sufficient safeguards and measures to ensure the safety of its employees, property and the prevention of the outbreak of violence between any parties.The commission will also examine Lonmin’s policies generally, including its procedure, practices and conduct relating to its employees and organised labour.“It will also investigate whether by act or omission, the company directly or indirectly caused the loss of life or damaged to persons or property,” Zuma said.Regarding the SAPS, the Commission will look at:The nature, extent and application of any standing orders, policy considerations, legislation or other considerations in dealing with the situation that gave rise to the incidents.The fact and circumstances that gave rise to the use of force and whether this was reasonable and justifiable in the circumstances.The role played by SAPS through its respective units, individually and collectively in dealing with the incident.Whether by act or omission, it directly or indirectly caused the loss of life or harm to persons or property.Regarding the NUM and AMCU, the Commission will look at:Whether the unions had exercised its best endeavours to resolve any disputes which may have arisen between itself and Lonmin or the other union or other parties.The extent to which the unions exercised effective control over its membership and those allied to it, in ensuring that their conduct was lawful and did not endanger the lives and property of other persons.Whether by act or omission, it directly or indirectly caused the loss of life or harm to persons or property.Zuma said the commission would also look into the role played by the Department of Mineral Resources, any other government department or agencies in relation to the incidents, and whether this was appropriate in the circumstances and consistent with their duties and obligations according to the law.“The Commission will also look into the conduct of individuals and loose groupings in fermenting and/or otherwise promoting a situation of conflict and confrontation which may have given rise to the tragic incident, whether directly or indirectly,” the President said.The commission will submit interim reports and recommendations to Zuma each month before the final report is presented.The commission’s work will be completed in four months, and within a month thereafter it will submit its final report to the President.“The commission shall, where appropriate, refer any matter for prosecution, further investigation or the convening of a separate inquiry to the appropriate law enforcement agency, government department or regulator regarding the conduct of a certain person or persons,” Zuma said.It will also have the necessary powers, including the power to enter and search premises, secure the attendance of witnesses and compel the production of documents.“We urge all affected parties to work with the commission so that the truth can be uncovered about what really happed in Marikana,” Zuma said.Source: SANews.gov.zalast_img read more

Spotify iPhone App: Threat to iTunes?

first_imgRelated Posts 9 Books That Make Perfect Gifts for Industry Ex… dana oshiro Tags:#music#web 4 Keys to a Kid-Safe Appcenter_img 12 Unique Gifts for the Hard-to-Shop-for People… Swedish music service Spotify just announced their application’s submission to the iPhone App store. Similar to the company’s Android application, the iPhone app gives users the ability to search for tracks and create music streaming play lists. One key feature of both applications is that it allows users to cache music for offline play. With this sort of functionality, it will be interesting to see if Spotify’s app will be taken as a threat to iTunes. If this were the case, then Spotify’s little green iPhone app might never make its way onto the device. Often touted as one of the best music streaming services, Spotify’s CEO Daniel Ek made a statement to the Register about his upcoming plans for a one-click download solution. This means that unlike other music applications like Pandora or Last.FM, the site would compete directly against iTunes as a store. As for the iPhone application, audiophiles simply select the tracks they’d like to listen to, and Spotify automatically syncs files to an offline playlist. This means that eager music fans can listen to their tunes from the subways, elevators and underground parking lots that normally plague their commutes to work.This sort of ease-of-use is exactly why Spotify already celebrates an estimated 5 million member user base despite only being available in the UK, Sweden, Norway, Spain, France and Finland. The company already has European licensing deals with Universal, Sony, Warner and EMI and it solidified an American licensing agreement with the Independent Online Distribution Alliance (IODA) last week. The recent deal brings Spotify’s catalogue to well over 7 million files. The company plans to launch in the US before the end of the year. 5 Outdoor Activities for Beating Office Burnoutlast_img read more

More Passivhaus Site Visits in Washington State

first_img Start Free Trial Already a member? Log in This article is only available to GBA Prime Members This blog, a report on my three-day visit to Passivhaus construction sites and the Passive House Northwest conference in Washington state, picks up where last week’s blog left off.After leaving the North residence job site, we drove to the Freas house, another construction site in Olympia. The steep site has a dramatic view of Budd Inlet, an arm of Puget Sound, to the west. (Author’s postscript: On August 15, 2013, the New York Times published an article on the Freas house: “The Passive House: Sealed for Freshness.”)A design/build company from Olympia, The Artisans Group, is building a single-family Passivhaus on the site. Designed by architect Tessa Smith, the house conforms to a severely modern aesthetic: it’s a flat-roofed rectangle.Smith is proud to report that (with the possible exception of some gaskets here and there) it’s a no-foam house. The floors, walls, and ceiling are all insulated with blown-in fiberglass. After their insulation contractor had trouble achieving required densities while insulating sheathed walls at the North residence, Smith resolved to change their approach. “We’re not blowing any cavities blind anymore,” she said. “We’re blowing through netting.”Here’s a summary of the Freas house specs:To learn more about this house and the other sites mentioned in this blog, be sure to click on the photos and read the captions.In the late 1970s, the state of Washington embarked on an ambitious and financially disastrous plan to build a string of nuclear power plants, in spite of the fact that the region is blessed with abundant and cheap hydropower. The agency in charge of building the plants, the Washington Public Power Supply System, had an unfortunate acronym: WPPSS. Almost immediately, the acronym began being pronounced “Whoops.”Whoops indeed. A variety of factors —… center_img Sign up for a free trial and get instant access to this article as well as GBA’s complete library of premium articles and construction details.last_img read more

Why Do Americans Hate Technological Change?

first_imgDan Lyons’s provocative question about Why Do American’s Hate Android And Love Apple?, got me to thinking about even larger questions involving my fellow countrymen’s relationship to technology.A.J. Schuler, in his 2003 paper, “Resistance to Change,” lays out 10 reasons why people resist change. His first two points may help us understand why we cling to technology that might not be the best for us.The risk of change is seen as greater than the risk of standing still.People feel connected to other people who are identified with the old way.Why Did Macs Never Rule America?Dan suggests one reason Americans support the iPhone is because “Apple is an American company, and Americans like to root for the home team.” He also says “lawsuits against Android phone makers have been an effective form of marketing” and that Apple fanboys have depicted Android users as “low-class people who are uneducated, poor, cheap and too lacking in `taste.’”While we might like the home team and being part of the cool-guy club, there is more to iPhone love than Apple and its “superior” marketing.For instance, when Dan asks, “Why do such a huge majority of Americans go out of their way to choose Apple?” he is talking about smartphones – because as a country we are not really in love with Apple’s computers. According to Ars Technica even at their peak of popularity, the computers of Apple have never even been one third as popular as the iPhone.From 1996 until his death, Steve Jobs tried fairly unsuccessfully to get Americans public to embrace the Mac the way they now love, love, love the iPhone. (As a former Apple employee, this is a problem that I lived first hand.)For many years after Mac OS X’s initial release on March 24, 2001, it was arguably the best desktop operating system in the world. For one thing, OS X was far more secure than Windows XP. Whole agencies in the federal government could be taken down by a virus or worm attack, but their CIOs would cling to Windows XP like they were married to it.Many businesses were even worse. And it isn’t all about not liking Apple. Many companies still cling to Windows XP when almost anyone with computer experience will tell you that Windows 7 is a far superior operating system. And let’s not even talk about Windows 8.Because Everyone Else Is Doing It – And They Will Help YouSo why are the 11-year-old Windows XP and the no-longer-clearly-superior iPhone still so beloved?It could be because they were the first widely accepted products of their type. While the Macintosh brought us the first graphical user interface, it was never as widely accepted as Windows. People got used to Windows, and the risk of going to something different became greater than the risk of sticking with XP.In a similar fashion there were smartphones before the iPhone – but Apple’s breakthrough was the first one to be widely accepted.In technology, “being connected to other people who are identified with the old way” also means that you have a support system of people to call if you screw things up.If you needed assistance when Windows XP broke, you probably knew someone who could help. And if you have a problem with your iPhone, how hard is it to find another iPhone user?Fast Food – But Not Fast Internet?It is not just Microsoft’s operating systems or Apple’s smartphone technology that Americans cling to. We seem perfectly happy with slow Internet access that even Russia and the notably technology adverse British wouldn’t tolerate.“Technology adverse British” is actually a slam our friends across the pond do not deserve. The Brits have adopted smartphones faster than the United States.It’s An American Thing, You Wouldn’t UnderstandStill, I wonder how America, birthplace to the personal computer and so many other technologies, has become so complacent when it comes to adopting the latest and greatest. I worry about the security vulnerabilities caused by our government’s refusal to aggressively diversify its operating system portfolio.But whatever you think of iPhones or Windows XP, there is one thing that we should all be able to rally around: faster Internet connections.Once we see the positive results of forcing change even when we are comfortable hugging our cable modems, perhaps change will come easier to us the next time.That’s important, because a “good enough for me” attitude towards technology is not the best way to keep up with the global economy. And we might fall even further behind if our international competitors can see more on their larger smartphone screens.Image courtesy of Shutterstock. IT + Project Management: A Love Affair Cognitive Automation is the Immediate Future of… Massive Non-Desk Workforce is an Opportunity fo… david sobottacenter_img Tags:#Apple#Internet#iPhone#Mac#Windows 3 Areas of Your Business that Need Tech Now Related Posts last_img

Leading a Revolution: Studios Producing Virtual Reality Films

first_imgAs VR rigs continue advanced testing, there’s been a shift from video game development to interactive virtual reality films. These are the studios leading that charge.Cover image via Oculus Story StudioOriginally intended as a gaming device, the Oculus Rift continues to evolve into a world-changing technology. Other companies are also experimenting with virtual reality, like Google with Cardboard and Jump. Even Samsung has teamed with Oculus to create Gear VR for their Milk VR platform.Now, these tech giants are turning to filmmakers to create original content. The problem is – no one has ever done this before. How can you tell a story in a 360 degree room? Does the story even need a script? Here are how some filmmakers are breaking ground in the world of virtual reality films.Oculus Story StudioIt should come as no surprise that the company leading the virtual reality charge is also the forerunner for developing VR films. A few months after Facebook‘s acquisition of Oculus, the VR company announced the newly formed Story Studio. The goal of the studio was to determine what was possible for VR filmmaking, and then share that knowledge with the world.Even more incredible than sharing their discoveries is the person leading the Story Studio. Oculus hired Saschka Unseld, a 6 year veteran of Pixar Animation Studios. Unseld was a layout artist on several Pixar features, and gained notoriety for directing the Pixar short film The Blue Umbrella.Since becoming the creative director, Unseld has been able to enjoy not having a set budget. It’s his responsibility to explore and learn everything possible. In doing so, they developed a slate of five films to be released in 2015. The goal was to create drastically different projects to determine what type of story is needed for a VR project.The first film, Lost, was focused on magic and wonder. The film was released in January of 2015. It told the story of a giant robot who was searching for his hand. The film takes place in a dark forest, and the team soon learned that a VR film could be far more frightening that they imagined.Image: Lost via Oculus Story StudioThe forrest engulfed the viewer, which could truly terrify a person. It was apparent that there was a massive power and responsibility to VR filmmaking. Their VR film could actually traumatize a person.Story Studio’s second feature would depart the darkness of their first film and focus on humor in a brighter environment. Originally titled Kabloom, the film about a hedgehog on his birthday would evolve into the movie Henry. Henry the hedgehog only wants to hug people, but others are terrified to hug him. The main character was so adorable, the audience watching literally wanted to reach out and hug him as the story moved on.Released in July 2015, Henry was such a success that it has become the most talked about feature throughout tech sites. The film also made the team realize that the audience will question if there is a set story of not. They become so attached to the character, they wondered if the character was actually responding to them.The film was also played on the Unreal Engine. Unlike any video game currently using the engine, Henry really pushed the game engine’s capabilities. The multiple Pixar vets behind Henry were thrilled, as it was similar to the technical boundaries pushed by the first Toy Story film.Currently the studio is working on their third film, Bullfighter. The film aims to put the audience in the ring with a charging bull. We are bound to hear about the exhilarating and terrifying experience soon.Image: Bullfighter via Oculus Story StudioIndustrial Light & MagicLeave it to the magicians at Industrial Light & Magic to take things to another level. ILM actually has an entire department dedicated to researching the use of VR. The Verge was recently let into the ILM VR lab, and what they saw was absolutely incredible. Not only are they working on interactive worlds with dinosaurs and Star Wars characters, they are already using VR practically.Image: Star Wars VR at ILM VR lab via The VergeFor the first Star Wars anthology film, Rogue One, the VR team built a fully interactive digital set. This allowed director Gareth Edwards to put on VR glasses and literally walk the set before the practical set is built. He could decide on any changes he wants to make, move buildings or trees, and he can even plot out camera angles and movement.If VR cinema never takes off, it will certainly become a pre-production tool at the least. VrseVrse is a VR production company headed by Chris Milk. What sets Vrse apart are the partnerships with Vice News and Annapurna Pictures.  At the Sundance Film Festival, Vrse released Vice News VR: Millions March NYC 2014. It’s claimed the be the first 360-degree VR news broadcast. Vrse also released the documentary Clouds Over Sidra, the story of a 12 year old girl in a Syrian refugee camp. You can take a glimpse into Vrse projects with this interactive video. What are your thoughts on VR filmmaking? Have you tried making a 360-degree film? Is this the future? Let us know in the comments belowcenter_img Samsung Milk VR: Gear IndieWhen Samsung decided to offer Gear VR for owners of the Note 4, it only made sense to use the technology Oculus was creating. Users could attach the Note 4 phone to a Gear VR rig to experience the incredible world of virtual reality. Now that the gear was available, Samsung needed content.Samsung launched Milk VR, a service providing free 360-degree experience for Gear VR users. They are now seeking even more content. Samsung made a short VR video called The Recruit. They also signed David Alpert, executive producer of The Walking Dead, to create an original VR series.Image: Nismo Nissan at Le Mans via Samsung Milk VRThe company also started a new channel called Gear Indie. The channel is a Milk VR exclusive that showcases short films from independent filmmakers. The added bonus is the fact that the channel will issue a series of challenges for filmmakers to earn rewards.Challenges will require contestants to figure out technical problems or how to handle storytelling. Gear Indie also established a mentorship program for these independent filmmakers to meet and collaborate with prominent members in the VR community.Google Cardboard & Google JumpIn an attempt to open Virtual Reality up to the masses, Google released Cardboard. The device is literally a cardboard box turned into VR headset. Users can either purchase a Cardboard box, or download the instructions to build their own. Then they simply insert their smart phone into the box. Boom! Instant VR.Google also released Jump, an open source platform that uses 16 GoPro cameras to shoot VR environments. The cameras capture a 360-degree environment. Users can then upload their videos to YouTube, which now supports 360-degree videos.last_img read more

The Dutch Own A Single Sport Like No Other Country In The

The Dutch do one thing very, very wellThe countries that have won the largest share of their medals in one sport at the Winter Olympics IranWrestling436863.2 CountrySportIn sportTotalshare of total IndonesiaBadminton193063.3 Trinidad and TobagoTrack & Field151979.0 Great BritainFigure skating515113345.545.5 JamaicaTrack & Field777898.7 Medals EthiopiaTrack & Field5353100.0% AustriaAlpine skiing351156122157.452.0 FinlandCross-country ski20774316446.547.0 SwedenCross-country ski31765515356.449.7 TurkeyWrestling639566.3 NetherlandsSpeedskating401144212195.4%94.2% Among countries that won at least 10 medals in a single sport. Through Feb. 14, 2018 (South Korea time).Source: Sports-Reference.com Things weren’t always this way. Looking at all the medals ever given out in speedskating, the Dutch have captured 21 percent. This is impressive, but it’s short of other countries’ performances in other sports: Canada has won 31 percent of all curling medals, and the U.S. has won 29 percent of all snowboarding medals, for instance. But much of this has to do with the fact that speedskating has a long history at the Olympics, and the Netherlands has only reached its current level of dominance relatively recently. The Dutch won 13.1 percent of all speedskating medals between 1924 and the 1994 Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, and all of those came after 1952. But since the 1998 Games in Nagano, Japan, the Netherlands has captured 36.6 percent of all podium spots.2Through the end of competition (Korea time) on Feb. 14, 2018. The Dutch dominance is so complete that it inspires wacky theories. NBC’s Katie Couric was mocked for her recent statement that the Dutch are so good because they have a longstanding tradition of skating from place to place on frozen canals. The problem: Those canals freeze only a few times a year, if at all, and when people skate on them, it’s for recreation. Dutch skeedskaters are also rumored to have an ideal body type for the sport, but while the country’s racers are often tall, so are many of their opponents from other countries. Nor do the Dutch use a proprietary method to glide past other competitors: While many members of the team have spectacular form, which includes bending low and skating with force and precision, the technique isn’t a secret.The real cause, more than anything else, is dedication. Starting in childhood, Dutch skaters train with excellent instructors. The Dutch team’s skating equipment is the best in the world, too. For the Olympics in 2014, officials from the host city of Sochi went to the Netherlands to learn how to build a top-of-the-line racing rink. By the time they are ready to compete, Dutch stars have been skating in ideal conditions and learning how to peak in time for the biggest races.The ultimate proof of a country’s prowess in an Olympic event is sweeping all three medals. The Netherlands managed it earlier this week, when Dutch women took gold, silver and bronze in a 3,000 meter speedskating race. In another race, the 31-year-old Ireen Wust won her fifth career gold medal and 10th overall medal, a speedskating record. That victory was a surprise, as the silver medalist, Miho Takagi of Japan, was a strong favorite. Wust is the first Dutch athlete to win five gold medals.The only champions who beat out the Dutch in terms of winning all their medals in a single sport in either the Winter or Summer Games3Among countries that have won at least 10 medals in a single sport. are Ethiopia and Jamaica, who excel in track and field races. Ethiopia has 53 summer medals, all of them in track and field. Jamaica, famous for the record-holding sprinter Usain Bolt, has won 98.7 percent of its medals in track. The Dutch are next on the list, at 94.2 percent. CountrySportGoldTotalGoldsTOTALGoldsTotal CroatiaAlpine skiing410411100.090.9 ChinaShort track930125375.056.6 BahamasTrack & Field121485.7 IN SportALL EVENTSShare of KenyaTrack & Field9310093.0 At the Olympics in South Korea, highly populated countries such as the U.S. can contend in a broad range of sports, including skiing, hockey, skating and more. But smaller countries have a harder time producing world-class athletes in so many disciplines, so they often concentrate on just a few. Then there’s the Netherlands, which owns one event alone: speedskating.Through the end of competition Wednesday (South Korea time) at the Pyeongchang Games, 40 of the 42 gold medals Dutch competitors have won in any Winter Olympics had come in speedskating — not to be confused with speedskating’s more exciting half-brother, short-track speed skating, which the Olympics count as a separate discipline. Just seven of the nation’s 121 total Winter medals came in a sport other than speedskating, a measly 5.8 percent. At the previous Winter Olympics in 2014, the Dutch claimed 24 medals: 23 in speedskating and one, a bronze, in short track skating. Eight of their medals were gold.In sports, a country’s dominance often fades — look at Romania in Olympic gymnastics or U.S. men in tennis Grand Slams. But Dutch speedskaters have sustained their superiority. In the 2010 Olympics, they won eight medals: seven in speedskating and one, a gold, in snowboarding. They won nine in 2006, all in speedskating. So far this Olympics, they’ve already won nine speedskating medals,1Not counting their two on the short track, or the silver speedskating medal the country won on Thursday. including five golds. The most impressive Dutch medal so far in these games: a third consecutive gold in the 5,000 meter race for Sven Kramer, who is 31 years old. He is the first man to win three straight golds in the same Olympic speedskating event. He won this year’s race by nearly two seconds. Among countries that won at least 10 medals in a single sportSource: Sports-Reference.com SwitzerlandAlpine skiing20595013940.042.5 The Summer Games’ one-sport specialistsThe countries that have won the largest share of their Summer Olympic medals in one sport SlovakiaCanoeing182864.3 South KoreaShort track2243275481.579.6 MoroccoTrack & Field192382.6 FranceAlpine skiing15483311545.541.7 So, will the Dutch team’s rule ever end? This seems impossible now, especially given the relatively low levels of attention the sport gets in powerful countries like the U.S. But you never know. As the U.S. and many other countries have shown, Olympic dominance usually doesn’t last forever. Enjoy it, those of you from the Netherlands, while you can. read more