11 January 2006All over South Africa, people and organisations are working to uplift the poor, save the environment, care for children and develop the country’s economy. These projects make a meaningful difference in the lives of ordinary people, but rarely make headlines.Rewarding these interventions and giving them the attention they deserve is the work of the Impumelelo Innovations Award Trust, which held its 2005 awards ceremony in December. Impumelelo is a Xhosa word meaning “success through working together”. The Impumelelo Innovations Awards Trust was created to reward innovations in government and public-private partnerships that reduce poverty and address key development issues. It is based on a model developed by the Ford Foundation, in partnership with the John F Kennedy School of Government and Harvard University.The trust rewards exceptional projects that involve partnerships with the public sector and enhance the quality of life of poor communities in innovative ways. Some R1-million is distributed every year to the most exceptional projects.The idea is that Impumelelo will become a permanent resource and database of innovations and best practices in the delivery of social services.At the 2005 awards ceremony, four projects received the Impumelelo Platinum Awards and prize money of R50 000 each. Gold Awards, also worth R50 000 each, went to 10 projects, while Silver Awards and R20 000 went to each of 24 projects.PLATINUM AWARDS Working on Fire ProgrammeEvery year, wildfires cost the South African economy millions of rand and cause loss of life and livelihoods. They devastate not only the forestry and farming sectors, but also those least able to afford such losses – the rural poor. Working on Fire was introduced in 2003 as a multidisciplinary government and private sector response, providing support to the National Disaster Management Unit.Four regional cluster offices, 44 fire bases and 46 Hotshot teams are located across the country, providing jobs to 1 120 previously unemployed people. They undergo rigorous training on fire-fighting, fire suppression, manual fire reduction, health and safety, social development and a wide range of life skills.Zion Anti-Rape ProjectSouth Africa has one of the highest rape statistics in the world. In 2004 a partnership between the South African Police Service in Limpopo’s Vhembe district and the Zion Christian Church, one of the biggest churches in SA, set up a joint educational campaign to educate people about rape and abuse, distributing 12 000 pamphlets and t-shirts. Community meetings reached 57 000 people, and reported rapes decreased from 11% to 4%.Local Labour Promotion ProjectTo deliver services and decrease their municipal debt, the Western Cape’s Overstrand municipality introduced a debt-reduction pilot project in Hermanus’s Zwehile township in 2005. Eighteen people whose municipal bill was in arrears built ablution facilities at the local sports field in return for a reduction of debt. It cost the municipality R350 000; with a private company the same building would have cost the municipality about R1-million. The beneficiaries’ accounts were credited with R179 887.Isibindi UmbumbuluIsibindi Umbumbulu – Creating Circles of Care – was initiated in 2001 by the National Association of Child Care Workers in response to the needs of HIV/Aids children and their families in the area surrounding Durban, KwaZulu-Natal. As an alternative to placing children in state residential institutions, 14 child and youth care workers were trained and visited 190 children and 55 families over a nine-month period, with 31 grants processed.All the children attend school – school fees and uniforms have been provided – and their families have been trained in food gardening. Eighteen children are involved in income-generating projects, with 38 youngsters and their siblings having received life skills training. Public-private partnerships have made the project cost effective, with the cost per child some R120 per month, as opposed to R5 000 in state residential facilities.GOLD AWARDS The Learning ChannelTo improve proficiency in maths, science and technology in South African schools, various partnerships were formed to launch the Liberty Life Learning Channel on SABC 3 in 1990, targeting children in grades 10 to 12.It is a live phone-in broadcast where pupils have access to syllabus-specific lessons in maths, science, biology and English. Educational material is also published in newspapers such as the Sunday Times, Sowetan, Daily Despatch, Eastern Province Herald, Argus, Rapport, Die Burger, Beeld and Pretoria News.The project’s success can be seen in the 600 hours of free transmission time the public broadcaster gives it every year, an indication of the channel’s impact and audience rating. This is the only live programme of its kind in the world.HIV/Aids Task TeamIn 2003 the Siyancuma municipality of the Northern Cape introduced an HIV/Aids Task Team to deal with the epidemic in Douglas and surrounding towns. After conducting a baseline survey of the area and setting up partnerships with churches and organisations in the area, the municipality conducted a protracted door-to door awareness campaign, encouraging voluntary counselling and testing.Twelve peer educators were trained, four awareness campaigns were conducted in schools and churches, and condoms were widely distributed. The main objectives have been to change sexual behaviour and destigmatise the disease. Grandmothers Against Poverty & AidsOne impact of HIV/Aids is that grandmothers are increasingly burying their own children and grandchildren. With this in mind, an occupational therapist and grandmothers from Khayelitsha in the Western Cape formed Grandmothers Against Poverty and Aids (Gapa), with the aim of helping grandmothers whose families are affected by HIV/Aids.Over 400 grandmothers attend monthly workshops and address issues such as Aids education, how to access government grants, developing business skills, food gardening, bereavement counselling, child care, nutrition and drawing up a will. Nineteen home support groups cater for 190 grandmothers who look after 350 children. About 70 grandmothers receive preschool bursaries for their grandchildren. Similar groups have been formed in the Eastern Cape.Integrated Serviced Land ProjectThe provision of early childhood development (ECD) services is a problem in poor communities on the Cape Flats in the Western Cape. In 2001 the South African government, in partnership with the ECD Centre, built six centres in Delft, Crossroads, Browns Farm, and Weltevreden Valley.Seventy-six jobs were created, over 120 women were trained in ECD, and 480 children are now given preschool education. In addition, 158 community members were trained in school governance, leadership and financial management, while 1 324 children gained access to the child support grant. Philani OutreachMany township children are malnourished due to the poverty of their mothers. In 2004 a partnership between Philani, the community and the government established an integrated childhood illnesses management programme in Khayelitsha, a poor settlement near Cape Town.The programme takes child health and nutrition beyond clinics into the community, with 65 volunteers in nine informal settlements providing support to women who care for their children at home. Some 2 000 malnourished children have been identified, 62% of whom have regained their age-appropriate weight.One benefit is that the home-based approach costs less than clinic-based health and nutrition rehabilitation programmes. In addition, the children’s mothers have been helped to start their own money-earning activities.18.2 LearnershipsThe Eben Donges Regional Hospital in the Western Cape introduced the 18.2 Learnership project in 1997 to train unemployed women in auxiliary nursing, focusing on anatomy, physiology and basic health care. Since then 90 women have completed their internship and are employed, 40 cleaners have had their skills upgraded to auxiliary nurses, 36 nurses have completed a second year of training and 32 have completed a third. The national drop-out rate for such training is 40%; at Eben Donges it is zero. Cape Flats Nature The Cape Flats is at the heart of the Cape Floristic Region biodiversity hotspot, a world heritage site with over 1 400 indigenous plant species, including 131 rare or endangered species of which 76 are narrow endemics. Cape Flats Nature was set up in 2003 to foster the conservation of fragmented natural habitats in an urban setting where land is scarce and poverty is widespread. Functioning in a relatively poverty-stricken area, it has four pilot sites.To foster a sense of community ownership and to cultivate a conservation ethic, surrounding communities were exposed to environmental education, recreation and job creation activities. Some 200 environment educators were trained, 252 jobs were created and almost 11 000 learners benefited from educational and recreational activities.Go for Gold ProgrammeGo for Gold, established in 1999 as a partnership between the construction sector and the Western Cape Education Department, aims to help disadvantaged students improve their maths and science skills and help them enter the construction industry.The project serves 23 schools on the Cape Flats, providing extra lessons and additional supervision. So far, 75 students have passed Grade 12; they are then placed at a construction site for a year. Some 72% of the project’s beneficiaries are currently employed in the construction sector or undergoing tertiary education. A second office has been opened in Mitchell’s Plain. Operation Thiba Stock theft is a major problem in Limpopo province. Before the South African Police Service launched Operation Thiba in 2004, most farmers did not bother to report stock theft as the recovery rate was below 10%. The operation involved establishing stock theft units in four districts, with small-scale farmers educated about branding and the registration of brand marks. Within two months, There was a 60% drop in stock theft. The operation recovered 949 cattle and 265 sheep, destroyed 12 syndicates, made 189 arrests and secured 89 convictions.Beaufort West HydroponicsThe dry Beaufort West region of the Karoo is characterised by high unemployment and poverty, with drought hitting agriculture hard and making farming by conventional means extremely difficult.A partnership between the CSIR, the municipality and the community led to the establishment of a hydroponics project in 2002, in which various herbs are produced. Hydroponics does not need soil; the nutrients are in the irrigation water and the crop grown inside greenhouses.The project has given jobs to 60 people – the highest employment figure for a single company in the area. Crops grown include coriander, sweet basil, rocket, mint, spinach, lettuce and tomatoes, all of which are sold to Woolworths.SILVER AWARDS iKamva LabantuTshebele Pele (Gauteng)Talking Beads (Gauteng)Men on the Side of the Road Project(W Cape)Food Gardening (Gauteng)Enviro-Permaculture Project (Limpopo)Happy Hours Day Care CentresCustomer Service Project (KwaZulu-Natal)Durban Air Quality Plan (KwaZulu-Natal)Emseni Community Projects (KwaZulu-Natal)Primedia Skills Development (Gauteng)Slang Park Housing Project (Western Cape)Zibambele Road Programme (KwaZulu-Natal)Cape Craft and Design Institute (Western Cape)Perinatal Mental Health Project (Western Cape)Community-Based Seed Production (Limpopo)Ebenhauser Dam (Western Cape)Morning Star Children’s Centre (Free State)Uthango Enterprise Project (Western Cape)Electrification of Ha-Muraga Village (Limpopo)Black Sash (Western Cape)Monash South Africa & the Hothouse Incubator (Gauteng)KZN Music Project (KwaZulu-Natal)Kgalagadi Sanitation Programme (Northern Cape)Ukunakekela Rape Survivors Project (KZN)SouthAfrica.info reporter Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo material
By dividing the work and sharing the load, the editing partners behind the films of J.J. Abrams have cut an unconventional path to Hollywood editing success.Top image via LucasfilmMaryann Brandon and Mary Jo Markey have been go-to editors for J.J. Abrams since Alias, all the way back in 2001. The long-standing trust built between Abrams, Brandon, and Markey eventually led to an unorthodox and wildly successful collaborative approach to the sometimes tedious process of editing.Working out of the Bad Robot suite (and cutting on Avid Media Composer), Brandon and Markey have co-edited all five of Abrams’s big-screen directorial efforts — Mission: Impossible 3, Star Trek, Super 8, Star Trek Into Darkness, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which garnered them each an Academy Award nomination.While both work on projects independently (for instance, Brandon on the upcoming Passengers and Markey on 2017’s The Great Wall), they still come together as a team whenever a new Abrams project pops up. So what exactly makes these two world-class editors work so well together?Secrets of the Co-Editing ProcessImage via Paramount PicturesIn a recent interview discussing their work on Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the two editors shed a little light on the overall process of working on a film of such magnitude and talked about how they approach working together and with Abrams.Abrams gives each editor separate sections of the film, letting them operate on their own to cut together scenes in their own way. This trust and freedom is one of the foundations of the duo’s working relationship. Brandon explains:Even when we work as a team, we each have our own sequences. We discuss the film as a whole and get our notes together and then go back to the sequences we have ownership of, and we finesse the sequences and then put it all together as a film. So it’s the same working experience as when we work alone.This decision to have two main editors work on a film is genius for a couple reasons. First, splitting the time up between the two will save money and ease individual frustrations. Secondly, getting two perspectives on characters and scenes is an excellent way to judge how your movie is flowing. This unusual tag-team approach to editing requires constant communication and a deep-seated understanding of the story being told. Markey goes into more detail:We go through the script and, say, if it’s 120 pages, and we know we each take about 60 pages, that maybe I’ll take 30, and then Maryann will take the next 30, and then I’ll take the next 30 and she’ll take the last 30, or something like that. In this case, I took the beginning, Maryann took the long middle, and then I took the end. We used to split it up in smaller chunks, but it just makes it easier for J.J. if we have really big pieces, so that he’s not bouncing back and forth between us as much.Editing for Emotion over EverythingImage via Paramount PicturesWhile Abrams offers vague notes at the start of production, Brandon and Markey both state that one objective is very clear and one goal certain — “making the audience feel a certain emotion.” Regardless of the specifics of the scene or the action taking place, the emotions drawn from the characters and story are top priority.In the excellent hour-long video featured below, Brandon and Markey explain their process, discuss working with Abrams, and expose the challenges that come with editing a major Hollywood production. They even break down a few scenes from their films, detailing what drove them to make the cuts required to build an effective scene.If there’s a lesson to be found in the words of these master editors, it’s that the depth of communication and level of understanding between director and editor can determine how well a story is told.Advice on Working with DirectorsImage via LucasfilmAmong the most challenging aspects of working as an editor are the constant back-and-forth discussions with producers and directors. With Brandon and Markey, the long history they share with Abrams has created a relationship built on trust and honesty. As such, notes and feedback aren’t as big of an issue. That’s not the case for everyone.For most editors, giving notes to the director mid-production can sometimes prove to be a touchy situation. Brandon and Markey urge editors to put their foot down right from the get-go. There’s a fine line between being difficult and being professional. Brandon explains:It’s a very tricky thing to do, because you want to be positive, and you want to also be constructive – and sometimes you have to be destructive to be constructive. Which I guess just means it’s hard work. It means try everything.This method of working (plus a deep understanding of relationships within the context of a film’s production) is what sets this duo apart from other editors. Their track record speaks for itself as proof.Who are some of your favorite film editors? Share in the comments below!
Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Recommended for you Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, TCI, February 10, 2017 – He is leaving St Helena to take up the post of Deputy Chief of Police of the Turks and Caicos islands and he brings with him 34 years of experience. Today the TCI Police Force announced our new DCP and his name is Trevor Botting. From a short list of six and after interviews, Botting was found most fitting likely due to his strong background in strategic and tactical policing. Botting also has experience in Airport policing, Disaster Management and Search and Rescue. Add to the list of accomplishments, management of 500 officers, neighborhood policing, firearms operations and the Dog unit. #MagneticMediaNews ALERT # 2 ON POTENTIAL TROPICAL CYCLONE NINE ISSUED BY THE BAHAMAS DEPARTMENT OF METEOROLOGY THURSDAY 12TH SEPTEMBER, 2019 AT 9 PM EDT Electricity Cost of Service Study among the big agenda items at September 11 Cabinet meeting Related Items:#magneticmedianews The Luxury of Grace Bay in Down Town Provo
October 18, 2018 SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — SDSU students who received a meningitis vaccine administered on campus by Walgreens are being asked to go back and have their vaccines re-administered, according to The Daily Aztec.“We recently became aware that the vaccine temperature at the time of administration was not optimal,” the statement said. “While we believe there is no associated safety risk, in order to ensure that recipients received full efficacy of the vaccine, we are in the process of contacting the students to offer re-vaccinations,” the company said Thursday.Approximately 350 students received vaccinations for meningococcus B from Walgreen between October 5 and October 8 at Viejas Arena.Walgreens later discovered that the vaccinations were not given at the correct temperature, prompting the company to ask students to return, the Daily Aztec reported.Related story: SDSU students line up to receive meningitis vaccintations SDSU students given meningitis shots at incorrect temperature Posted: October 18, 2018 , Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter
Kolkata: The Calcutta University (CU) has started work to renovate all the buildings on its main campus at College Street in a bid to ensure proper conservation of all these buildings as per its heritage value. The state Public Works Department which is executing the work has consulted the West Bengal Heritage Commission (WBHC) and the entire process of renovation is being supervised by Partha Ranjan Das, heritage conservation architect of WBHC. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: Mamata”The main purpose of preservation of heritage is to renovate the buildings in a way so that they maintain the look it had during its inception. Temporary constructions have come up inside the buildings here and there from time to time which does not go with the heritage. We are removing all encroachments that are deterrent to the heritage,” said Sonali Chakravarti Bannerjee, vice chancellor of Calcutta University. The verandahs of the buildings had turned into an eyesore with rooms for officers, attached toilets and similar constructions blocking the actual look of the balconies of heritage building. The four buildings that are being given a facelift are Asutosh Building, Darbhanga Building, Centenary Building and the Hardinge Building. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateThe Darbhanga Building erected in 1912 houses university offices, including the chambers of the Vice-Chancellor, the Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Academic Affairs, the Registrar and the Controller of Examinations. The Asutosh Building unveiled in 1926 accommodates the postgraduate language and literature departments and the department of commerce. The Senate House that was erected in 1872 and was the first habitation of the varsity was demolished in 1960. It used to provide the venue for Senate meetings, the chamber of the Vice-Chancellor, offices of the Registrar and also examination and lecture halls. Elaborating on the renovation work, Kanakendu Sinha, superintending engineer (Presidency Circle) of the state PWD, said the work begun with through examination of the strength of the buildings. The Darbhanga Building was found to be in a weak condition with many old furniture, papers being dumped at the top floor of the building. “Most of these things being very old hardly had any value and were highly risky in terms of fire vulnerability too. All these things were brought down to reduce the load at the top before taking up the work. The university authorities had provided us with maps, drawings and similar material of the inception days which have helped us immensely in execution of the work,” Sinha said. The syndicate hall of the university has already seen a major facelift with air conditioning and video conference facilities. The photographs of 51 chancellors of the varsity till date has also been restored and put up on the wall of the syndicate room. The work that had started in the middle of 2018 is expected to be completed in the next four to five months. “After the completion of the work on this campus we will undertake work to renovate our Rajabazar Science Campus which is also another heritage building,” the Vice-Chancellor said.
Uber announced the details regarding its new and open source real-time analytics engine, AresDB, yesterday. AresDB, released in November 2018, is Uber’s new solution for real-time analytics that helps unify, simplify, and improve Uber’s real-time analytics database solutions. It makes use of graphics processing units (GPUs) and an unconventional power source to help analytics grow at scale. AresDB’s architecture explores features such as column-based storage with compression (for storage efficiency), real-time ingestion with upsert support (for high data accuracy), and GPU powered query processing (for highly parallelized data processing powered by GPU). Let’s have a look at these key features of AresDB. Column-based storage AresDB stores data in a columnar format. Values in each column get stored as a columnar value vector. Nullness/validity of any values within the columns get stored in a separate null vector, where the validity of each of these values is represented by one bit. There are two types of stores, namely live and archive store, where column-based storage of data takes place. Live Store This is where all the uncompressed and unsorted columnar data (live vectors) gets stored. Data records in these live stores are then further partitioned into (live) batches of configured capacity. The values of each column within a batch are stored as a columnar vector. Validity/nullness of the values in each of these value vectors gets stored as a separate null vector, where the validity of each value is represented by one bit. Archive Store AresDB also stores all the mature, sorted, and compressed columnar data (archive vectors) in an archive store with the help of fact tables (stores an infinite stream of time series events). Records in archive store are also partitioned into batches similar to the live store. However, unlike the live batches, an archive batch is created that contains records of a particular Universal Time Coordinated (UTC) day. Records are then sorted as per the user configured column sort order. Real-time ingestion with upsert support Under the real-time ingestion feature, clients ingest data using the ingestion HTTP API by posting an upsert batch. Upsert batch refers to custom and serialized binary format that helps minimize the space overhead while also keeping the data randomly accessible. Real-time ingestion with upsert support After AresDB receives an upsert batch for ingestion, the upsert batch first gets written to redo logs for recovery. Then the upsert batch gets appended to the end of the redo log, where AresDB identifies and skips “late records” (where event time older than archived cut-off time) for ingestion into the live store. For records that are not “late,” AresDB uses the primary key index that helps locate the batch within the live store. During ingestion, once the upsert batch gets appended to the redo log, “late” records get appended to a backfill queue and other records are applied to the live store. GPU-powered query processing The user needs to use Ares Query Language (AQL) created by Uber to run queries against AresDB. AQL is a time series analytical query language that uses JSON, YAML, and Go objects. It is unlike the standard SQL syntax of SELECT FROM WHERE GROUP BY like other SQL-like languages. AQL offers better programmatic query experience as compared to SQL in JSON format for dashboard and decision system developers. This is because JSON format allows the developers to easily manipulate queries using the code, without worrying about issues such as SQL injection. AresDB manages multiple GPU devices with the help of a device manager that models the GPU device resources in two dimensions, namely, GPU threads and device memory. This helps track GPU memory consumption as processing queries. After query compilation is done, AresDB helps users estimate the number of resources required for the execution of a query. Device memory requirements need to be satisfied before a query is allowed to start. AresDB is currently capable of running either one or several queries on the same GPU device as long as the device is capable of satisfying all of the resource requirements. Future work AresDB is open sourced under the Apache License and is currently being used widely at Uber to power its real-time data analytics dashboards, helping it make data-driven decisions at scale. In the future, the Uber team wants to improve the project by adding new features. These new features include building the distributed design of AresDB to improve its scalability and reduce the overall operational costs. Uber also wants to add developer support and tooling to help developers quickly integrate AresDB into their analytics stack. Other features include expanding the feature set, and Query engine optimization. For more information, check out the official Uber announcement. Read Next Uber AI Labs introduce POET(Paired Open-Ended Trailblazer) to generate complex and diverse learning environments and their solutions Uber to restart its autonomous vehicle testing, nine months after the fatal Arizona accident Uber manager warned the leadership team of the inadequacy of safety procedures in their prototype robo-taxis early March, reports The Information