SA-Senegal transport projects on cards

first_img3 October 2013 South African public and private companies will be looking to participate in a number of transport infrastructure projects in Senegal following the visit to Dakar this week by President Jacob Zuma and a delegation of local businesspeople. Zuma declared his state visit a success on his return to South Africa on Wednesday, saying: “[A] lot has been accomplished at economic and political levels during this visit. There will be a lot of progress going forward”. According to the Presidency, Zuma and his Senegalese counterpart, Macky Sall, expressed their desire for South Africa and Senegal to work together to make Dakar an air transport hub serving the West African region. They agreed to pursue the establishment of a well-developed aviation maintenance service, and “instructed their ministers responsible for this sector to undertake the necessary steps as soon as possible”, the Presidency said in a statement. Dakar’s new international airport, the Blaise Diagne International Airport (AIBD), is due to open in the first quarter of 2014. A new 32-kilometre toll highway running through central Dakar and its surrounding areas was opened in August, with an extended section linking to the new airport due to open in late 2014. According to a joint communique issued after Zuma’s meeting with Sall, the Senegalese president “expressed Senegal’s wish for the continued involvement of South Africa’s Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) in the realization of the Blaise Diagne International Airport in Diass”. At the same time, Sall “praised the interest expressed by South African public and private companies (IDC, Transnet, Lonrho and TMMF Holdings) to form a consortium and participate in the realization of the Dakar-AIBD-Thies Railway Project”. The planned railway will link Dakar, the new airport and Thies, Senegal’s third-largest city, which lies 72km east of Dakar. Zuma and Sall also agreed on the twinning of Senegal’s Goree Island, which was at the centre of the slave trade, and South Africa’s Robben Island. “Goree Island also has an important history for South Africa, as that is where the then exiled ANC met with Afrikaner intellectuals in 1987,” the Presidency said. Following a visit to Goree Island on Wednesday, Zuma referred to that meeting, saying it was “very important as it served to demystify the ANC and help white South Africans in particular to understand it better. This island therefore has a special place in South African transitional history.” SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

While Facebook & Twitter Sit on Sidelines, MySpace Jumps Into Bulk User Data Sales

first_imgA Comprehensive Guide to a Content Audit The Dos and Don’ts of Brand Awareness Videos Tags:#MySpace#news#NYT#social networks#web Related Posts The 22 sets of data being made available are cheap. Prices range from $10 for raw dumps from the MySpace API to $300 for everything broken out by latitude and longitude. Subsequently derived data sets can be put on sale by InfoChimps users as well, with a revenue split.Analysis coming from the data could include things like music trends per zipcode, popular URLs being shared, etc. MySpace is generally thought of as a social network on the decline, but if it is able to position itself as the place to do music still then its hundreds of millions of users could remain engaged. Will data scientists want this data, though? Time will tell, but MySpace has long done cooler things with data than competitors Facebook and Twitter and people haven’t gotten terribly excited about it yet.Related: See today’s coverage of the cancelation of the Netflix Challenge due to privacy concerns.Bulk user data has tremendous analytical potential and both Facebook and Twitter have thrown the breaks on 3rd parties offering up their user data more than once. We covered InfoChimps’ offering of bulk Twitter data in depth this Fall, but the marketplace quietly removed that data after Twitter asked them to “wait” for a second time.In February we profiled Pete Warden (The Man Who Looked Into Facebook’s Soul), a developer who planned on putting a huge pile of Facebook user data online for academic analysis. As we wrote in that article:If what people call Web 2.0 was all about creating new technologies that made it easy for everyday people to publish their thoughts, social connections and activities, then the next stage of innovation online may be services like recommendations, self and group awareness, and other features made possible by software developers building on top of the huge mass of data that Web 2.0 made public.Days later Facebook contacted Warden days later and asked him to hold off on release of that data as well. Last week Warden posted open source code for harvesting the same type of bulk user data from Google Profiles, so the game’s not up yet, not by a long shot.Why is this kind of big data interesting? This rational may be less applicable in the case of MySpace given its focus on music, or it may be more applicable given the allegedly poorer user demographics on the site compared to Facebook, but here’s how I explained my interest in big social network data analysis in general, as part of a discussion about an excellent special report on big data in the Economist this month.I think in big data there lies a lot of hidden patterns that represent both opportunities for action and for reflection. At RWW we’re working on trying to find ways to mine data to find news first (we’ve got some interesting methods employed already) and personally, I think the world is an awfully unfair mess and I’m hoping that data analysis will help illuminate some of the hows and the whys. Like the way that real-estate redlining was exposed back in the day by cross referencing census data around racial demographics and housing loan data. That illuminated systematic discrimination against black families in applying for home loans in certain parts of town. So too I think we’ll find a lot of undeniable proof of injustices and clues for how we might deal with them in big data today.What will we see come out of MySpace’s bulk data? What could we see come from Facebook and Twitter data if only they would let people get their hands on it? Time will tell. Guide to Performing Bulk Email Verification MySpace has taken a bold step and allowed a large quantity of bulk user data to be put up for sale on startup data marketplace InfoChimps. Data offered includes user playlists, mood updates, mobile updates, photos, vents, reviews, blog posts, names and zipcodes. Friend lists are not included. Remember, Facebook and Twitter may be the name of the game these days in tech circles, but MySpace still sees 1 billion user status updates posted every month. Those updates will now be available for bulk analysis.This user data is intended for crunching by everyone from academic researchers to music industry information scientists. Will people buy the data and make interesting use of it? Will MySpace users be ok with that? Is this something Facebook and Twitter ought to do? The MySpace announcement raises a number of interesting questions. Facebook is Becoming Less Personal and More Pro… marshall kirkpatricklast_img read more

Can Google Grow Up?

first_img3 Areas of Your Business that Need Tech Now Related Posts Massive Non-Desk Workforce is an Opportunity fo… IT + Project Management: A Love Affair david stromcenter_img As mentioned last week on Google’s blog, this fall the company will shut down a series of services, including Aardvark, Desktop, Notebook, Web Security (the original Postini technology) and others less well known. Jeff Reeves at Smart Money magazine has even suggested spinning off several divisions to give Google more focus, and giving employees an incentive for some of its far-out ideas. But first, you’ll need a scorecard to keep track. Some of the shut-downs are complete: for example, with Google Desktop, nothing will kept up: the APIs, gadgets, plug-ins and everything else will go away next week. Other shut-downs are more transitional: For example, Google will continue to support existing Web Security customers, although it will not sell any new subscriptions. And Aardvark? Shuttered. All we can do is sigh. (See here for our thoughts on when Google acquired them.)What does this mean? Obviously, Google is maturing as a company, and even with all of its resources can’t continue many of its product lines. The Postini acquisition is a good case in point. When Google acquired them four years ago, they were one of the leaders in email filtering and Web security. Since then, Google has integrated these features into their browsers and email products. According to a PR rep, the full set of remaining email-related Postini services, such as Google Message Continuity, will continue to be sold and supported.But this maturation process is tricky, as any parent can tell you. What kind of adult is Google going to be when it grows up? A surly teen that never comes out of its room, other than for meals? A spoiled child who always gets what it wants? A polished well-adjusted adult, with lots of friends and a nice house in the suburbs, or at least in a fancy San Francisco neighborhood? Or, as Reeves suggests, twins that eventually part ways, with one taking all the excitement and the other delivering more predictable performance and profits?Google’s blog claims “this will make things much simpler for our users, improving the overall Google experience.” I disagree. While shutting down services is never easy, it isn’t about the experience; it is about saving money on under-performing assets, or reassigning engineering talent elsewhere, or because the original developers for these services have left the company and no one else has picked up the ball. Or perhaps because at its core Google is a cloud-based company and anything that it creates that requires a download to your desktop (like Desktop) is going to be marked as a potential short-timer. I just wish they could be more forthcoming in their announcements. Tags:#Analysis#enterprise#news Cognitive Automation is the Immediate Future of…last_img read more

Study to Evaluate Economic Impact of Troop Cuts at Ft Riley

first_imgMatrix Design Group held a kickoff meeting last week to launch a study of the economic impact of cutbacks in personnel at Fort Riley on the Flint Hills region in northeastern Kansas.The study, funded through a grant from DOD’s Office of Economic Adjustment, will assess the impact of:a recent reduction of 2,093 personnel; anda potential reduction of 1,000, 2,000 or 3,000 personnel in the future.The study will focus on the impact of potential reductions on the workforce, housing, schools and retail services.The cutbacks at Fort Riley have come as the Army sheds 120,000 soldiers from its active-duty end strength, an effort which began in fiscal 2013. It now is on course to reach a force of 450,000 by the end of FY 2018.The military population at Fort Riley peaked at almost 18,000 but now is in the process of coming down. The most recent round of Army restructuring eliminated 615 personnel at the post, bringing its current population to about 16,000, reported KSAL. Its population stood at about 9,000 in FY 2001.Matrix is scheduled to deliver a report of its findings by November. Dan Cohen AUTHORlast_img read more

WilmingtonTewksbury Chamber Of Commerce Invites Local Business Owners To Woburn Networking Event

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Are you a young professional or simply young at heart? Everyone is invited to join us and do some your summer networking with the Woburn Business Association’s YP group on Thursday, August 15, 2019, from 5:30pm to 7:30pm, at Boston Appliance (60 Cummings Park Drive) in Woburn..This event will include cooking demos from a Food Network chef, appetizers, refreshments and of course, help you COOK UP lots of great contacts and new ideas for your business.Tickets cost $10 for members and $20 for non-members. Register HERE.(NOTE: The above announcement is from the Wilmington-Tewksbury Chamber of Commerce.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWilmington-Tewksbury Chamber Of Commerce Helps Raise Funds For NuPath By ‘Networking With A Purpose’In “Business”Wilmington-Tewksbury Chamber Of Commerce To Co-Host ‘Women In Business’ Event On July 22In “Business”CHAMBER CORNER: Learn About CareOne At WilmingtonIn “Business”last_img read more

Houstonian Who Joined A Protest In Vietnam Is Deported

first_imgREUTERSAmerican citizen Will Nguyen is escorted by local police officers before his trial at a court in Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam on July 20, 2018. The 32-year-old Yale graduate is set to be deported after facing charges over disrupting public order. Listen 00:00 /08:00 To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code:center_img X As News 88.7 has been reporting, a Houstonian who was detained in Vietnam is coming back to the U.S.A. Vietnamese court is deporting William Nguyen after convicting him of disturbing public order for his part in a protest last month. A court official says Nguyen admitted to the violation and showed remorse.A Vietnamese court official said Nguyen, who is of Vietnamese descent, admitted to the violation and showed remorse.He was facing up to 7 years in prison. The case attracted the attention of members of Congress from both sides of the aisle.In the above audio hear what California Congressman Alan Lowenthal tells News 88.7 earlier today (July 20).David Hutt’s been closely following Nguyen’s case. He’s a political journalist and commentator based in Southeast Asia. Houston Matters host Craig Cohen spoke with Hutt about the political ramifications of Nguyen’s arrest and subsequent trial. Sharelast_img read more

Gratitude is the Attitude to Promote Honesty in the Workplace

first_imgEmployee theft, whether from occasional cash-skimming or meticulously orchestrated embezzlement schemes, costs US businesses up to $50 billion annually. But cheating, like companies themselves, often starts small, and research in Psychological Science suggests that cultivating feelings of gratitude can encourage employees to be content with what they have. Past research has shown that feelings of gratitude mayenhance self-control, supporting the equal exchange of resources and improvingour ability to make financial decisions that involve delaying gratification toa later date. Reference In a follow-up study of 141 online participants, the researchersfound that recalling moments of gratitude from their past also reducedparticipant’s willingness to lie about a coin flip in exchange for extracompensation. Gratitude was once again found to boost ethical behavior in adose-dependent way, although rates of cheating were higher overall. This mayhave been because participants knew that lying about their compensation wouldnot directly harm another participant, the researchers write. These findings suggest that cultivating a culture of gratitudemay serve as an effective bottom-up “honesty nudge” in educational and officesettings by devaluing dishonest behaviors rather than requiring individuals toactively repress unethical impulses to avoid consequences, a more taxingtop-down process. In the gratitude condition, however, the computer appearedto crash and the participant was informed they would need to redo the task — thatis, until the confederate “messed with a few wires” and got their score toappear on screen, leaving the participant with the impression that they hadnarrowly escaped another brush with boredom. Gratitude may also function as a “parent virtue,” writes APSFellow David DeSteno, a professor of psychology at Northeastern University, whodiscussed his research in the HarvardBusiness Review. “Gratitude may work rather effortlessly to alter people’sdecisions about the value of cheating and, thus, stem unethical behavior withless internal conflict,” the authors wrote. At this stage in the experiment, participants were told theywould need to flip a virtual coin in order to randomly assign themselves andanother (fictional) participant to each of two tasks after the researchers leftthe room: a 10-minute numbers game or 45 minutes of challenging math and logicproblems. What the participants didn’t know was that the coin was preprogrammedto assign them to the longer task. To complete the shorter task instead, theywould have to cheat and lie their way to 30 minutes of freedom.center_img In the first of two experiments on the subject, DeSteno andcolleagues had 156 students complete a test of general knowledge with a confederateteammate (who was actually a member of the research team). Then, they completedan intentionally tedious word recognition task on their own. As the computerappeared to be calculating their scores, the participants were exposed to anexperimental manipulation intended to induce a particular mood: DeSteno, D., Duong, F., Lim, D., & Kates, S. (2019). Thegrateful don’t cheat: Gratitude as a fount of virtue. Psychological Science. In the happiness condition, the computer calculated the participants’scores as expected, and they spent the next several minutes watching anddiscussing funny clips of babies and animals. The neutral condition proceededsimilarly, with participants watched an excerpt from a slightly less excitinggeology documentary. “We believe that gratitude might enhance certain moralactions outside the realm of exchange — actions that are also characterized bythe need to resist a temptation to satisfy a selfish urge for immediategratification,” the study authors write. Gratitude was also found to decrease participants’likelihood of cheating in a dose-dependent manner, with those who ratedthemselves as low in gratitude cheating 50% of the time, and those who rated themselvesas very high in gratitude cheating in just 5% of trials. While 16% of those in the happiness or neutral conditionscheated on average, just 2% of people in the gratitude condition put their ownneeds above those of their supposed co-participant. The prevalence of cheating amonghappy participants further suggests that this effect is specific to feelings ofgratitude, rather than to positive affective states as a whole, the authorscontinued. “The gratitude that people feel directly impacts theirhonesty,” the authors write.last_img read more

JON Wilkin has guaranteed that Saints will rip in

first_imgJON Wilkin has guaranteed that Saints will ‘rip into’ Wigan when the two sides meet on Monday.The utility back says the team owes the fans a performance and in return that will create an intimidating atmosphere.“The Wigan game is big and is as big as they get for me,” he said. “The week’s build up is special. When you bump into people they mention it and the press build it up too. The fans will turn up and just want us to win. They won’t be worried about league position or where we are at the end of the season. It’s about the game and I think the timing is right for us to come into this match.“We need to reconnect the players to the fans and the ground. I thought we’d done that when we beat Leeds here last year. It was buzzing that night. We will bring the intensity on Monday and hope that is picked up by the fans and they make it intimidating.“We owe the fans a big performance. The support away at Castleford was superb but the week before some of the fans were leaving early when we played Hull KR. I’ve never experienced that before. We have a bond between each other at the club and through that I hope the fans will be rewarded with a good performance.“It hasn’t happened yet and there are some reasons but not excuses. We’ve had injuries, no half back perhaps and poor performances and that has led to some anxiety in the ground. I watched us play against Widnes when I was banned and you could feel it in the air.“Long term making Langtree Park as an intimidating place to play has to be a priority.”He continued: “We haven’t started well enough in games this year and that has to be the focus on Monday. You lose energy not having the ball early on and that comes back on us later in the game.“We are going to rip into this game.“Last month we have been good, but in the freakish weather against Hull KR they schooled us. We should be happy with the last month but when it comes to combinations and momentum for longer periods we’ve not had that.“A big performance will set us up for the rest of the season. We have to produce big performances against the teams around us as if we don’t, we don’t deserve to win the comp. We have to put ourselves in a good position to have a crack at the grand final. We are passionate and believe we can do it.”Jon has played in a multitude of positions this season and finds himself back in the halves after a short sabbatical at second row/loose forward.“My role has changed, but it still is to organise the team and move them around,” he added. “I need to bring others into the game like Willie Manu. I’m probably the best organiser in the team due to my experience. I’ve gone from a player who can pass, kick and run a bit into a guy who has had to understand the technical subtleties of a half back.“Nathan Brown has been good for me in that regard really. The more about the game I can learn the better. In the last match I went at 9 and that was a challenge. I believe in the club and what it means to the community and I will do anything for it.“I have sacrificed a lot. I believe I have good utility value for the England squad and I want to be a part of that, but it is difficult when you aren’t playing in best position for you. I like the challenge and the game and I have learnt a lot about myself this season.”Tickets for tonight’s match are still on sale. You can get yours by calling into the Ticket Office at Langtree Park or on the cash turnstiles from 4.45pm.last_img read more