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Kurtenbach on the Warriors: Handing out game balls after Game 2


first_imgTORONTO — I don’t know who first said it. All I know is that the rule of the NBA Playoffs is that a series doesn’t start until the road team wins a game.Well, consider the 2019 NBA Finals started.The Warriors’ found the recipe for their patented third quarter magic Sunday night in Toronto, and used it to beat the Raptors 109-104, evening this series at 1-1 as it heads back to Oakland. An 18-0 run in the quarter flipped a five-point halftime deficit and the Warriors held on from there, barely …last_img


A poor Sharks start, and a deserved end result


first_imgLAS VEGAS — The Sharks already knew they’d be without 30-goal scorer Evander Kane for their season-opening game with the Vegas Golden Knights on Wednesday. Then coach Pete DeBoer found out about an hour before the start that he’d be without two-time Norris Trophy winner Erik Karlsson, as well.Mix in the fact that the Sharks were starting three rookies against a highly motivated team many feel are the favorites to win the Pacific Division, and the Sharks clearly had a steep hill to climb.It …last_img


Bat Evolution: The Play’s the Thing


first_imgAccording to the Darwinian script, each animal evolved its particular adaptations from an ancestor lacking those adaptations.  Take bats.  They must have evolved their wings and sonar from mouse-like ancestors that lived on the ground.  Is it enough to imagine these things, or should we expect science to provide evidence that is what really happened?    Scientific American published a story entitled, “Taking Wing: Uncovering the Evolutionary Origins of Bats.”  It sounds like the evidence has been uncovered, now to be revealed for the first time, and we are about to look at it.  Actually, reporter Nancy B. Simmons ended with this remarkable admission:Despite many new discoveries about the rise of bats, mysteries remain.  Bat ancestors must have existed prior to the Eocene, but we have no fossil record of them.  Likewise, the identity of the closest relatives of bats is still unknown.  Investigators are also eager to learn when the bat lineage first became distinct from that of the other laurasiatheres and how much of early bat evolution and diversification took place in the northern continents versus the southern continents.  We therefore need fossils that lie even closer to the beginning of bats than Onychonycteris does.  With luck, paleontologists will find such specimens, and they will help solve these and other riddles about the origins of these fascinating animals.Obviously this points back to Onychonycteris and the other “many new discoveries” that will have to support the evolutionary story across the remaining gaps.  What did the article say about these?  Simmons started off by discussing the wonder of bats as we see them today.  She admitted that “their ascension was hardly a foregone conclusion: no other mammal has conquered the air” with powered flight, though several mammals can glide on outstretched flaps of skin.  Powered flight puts severe requirements on many organs, though, and the echolocation found in 85% of these “superb fliers” puts additional anatomical constraints on the skull, mouth, ears and throat.  She spent some time describing all the factors involved after saying, “Indeed, exactly how these rulers of the night sky arose from terrestrial ancestors is a question that has captivated biologists for decades.”    Then she went into her discovery this year of Onychonycteris finneyi in Wyoming, “the most primitive bat ever discovered” (see 02/16/2008 discovery report).  This bat, though possessing shorter forelimbs and longer hindlimbs than extant bats, was still fully capable of flight.  In fact, living mouse-tailed bats have a similar wing aspect ratio, she said.    The main evolutionary question addressed by her find, then, was not how powered flight evolved, but whether it evolved first, or sonar first, or whether both flight and sonar evolved simultaneously.  Earlier fossils did not help in filling the gap, she argued, but Onychonycteris did not appear to have sonar.  The flight-first theoreticians win, she claimed.    “Still, we lack fossils that establish how bats are related to other mammals,” she said in a section about the diversity of living bats.  Genetic studies do not show them related to other gliding mammals.  The nearest ancestors, “an ancient lineage known as Laurasiatheria” consists of “such diverse beasts as carnivores, hoofed mammals, whales, scaly anteaters, shrews, hedgehogs and moles,” – none of which are fliers (although there were flying whales in Disney’s Fantasia 2000).  This leaves a lot of evolutionary space unfilled:Primitive laurasiatheres, however, were probably mouse- or squirrel-size creatures that walked on all fours and ate insects.  Laurasiatheres are thought to have evolved on the ancient supercontinent of Laurasia, which comprised what is now North America, Europe and Asia, probably in the late Cretaceous period, some 65 million to 70 million years ago.  The exact position of bats within this group is uncertain, but clearly a considerable amount of evolutionary change separates Onychonycteris and other bats from their terrestrial forebears.    Some of this change from land dweller to flier may have occurred surprisingly quickly, if recent discoveries in the field of developmental genetics are any indication.  Though short by bat standards, the fingers of Onychonycteris are greatly elongated as compared with those of other mammals.  How could this elongation have evolved?Good question.  Her answer?  Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs).  The genes for these limb-growing proteins are expressed differently in mice and bats.  If we can imagine gradual changes in gene expression of BMPs, then, we can imagine transitional forms, even if none are found in the fossil record:It is therefore possible that a small change in the genes regulating BMPs underlies both the developmental and evolutionary elongation of bat wing digits.  If so, that might explain the absence in the fossil record of creatures intermediate between short-fingered, nonflying mammals and long-fingered bats such as Onychonycteris and Icaronycteris: the evolutionary shift may have been very rapid, and few or no transitional forms may have existed.She apparently did not ask why differences in BMP expression didn’t lead to flying hedgehogs and cows jumping over the moon.  On the other hand, maybe they did; they just didn’t leave any fossils.  That the gap was filled in with imagination is underscored with her final paragraph, quoted above: “Despite many new discoveries about the rise of bats, mysteries remain….”The only transitional bats in Darwin’s belfry are imaginary ones.  Darwin removed the requirement for hard evidence and replaced it with imagination.  That’s why nothing makes sense in biology except in the light of evolution; if you can simply imagine the transitional forms that should be there but aren’t, you can make your theory come true without data.  Suddenly everything makes sense.  Data are such contrary things, anyway.  It helps, too, when you also rule that alternative views cannot be heard.  This was Hamlet’s undoing; Charlie conquered Claudius, took the throne, exiled Hamlet along with his righteous anger, canceled the play, and produced one of his own, featuring all kinds of fanciful chimeras like imaginary transitional bats taking wing.  It was a hit.  It had to be.  The subjects dared not fail to applaud, cheer and beg for encores.  His own play’s the thing to assuage the conscience of the king.  Now you know the rest of the play within the play.(Visited 14 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more


4 Tips on Integrating GoPro Shots with Cinema Footage


first_imgEmbarking on a multi-camera video shoot? We run through 4 tips on how to ‘trick’ your audience by effectively mixing GoPro shots with cinematic footage.GoPro has come along way since the first version was released back in 2004. Until the last few years, the pint sized cameras were use sparingly if not at all in Hollywood and professional productions, but that all changed with the GoPro HERO 3 & 4 series. In fact, GoPros were the go-to camera for documentary films like 2012’s Leviathan, which uses GoPros almost exclusively to capture a commercial fishing boat at sea.Now these nearly indestructible cameras are being fitted to just about everything, giving the audience a point of view we’ve never had before. But the thing to remember: the cinematographer didn’t just strap the GoPro to just anything and let it go. No, they planned and tested certain shots to ensure the cams were being used most effectively.Here are 4 tips that will allow you to integrate your GoPro footage with cinematic footage.Tip #1 CoverageWhether shooting for sports, nature, documentary or feature film, you have to have coverage – a group of shots that give a sense of space that you can cut to. With this in mind, many filmmakers are using GoPros for this purpose, specifically in actions sequences. Below we have images from Need for Speed that show how cinematographer Shane Hurlbut used GoPros attached to cars to give a sense of immersion. Placement of each GoPro was planned out meticulously for each scene and Shane, along with his assistants, carefully placed each camera in order to give the editor as many angles as possible.Image courtesy of Hurlbut VisualsImage courtesy of Dreamworks SKGHaving the option of several angles in post production allows the editor to find footage that will cut seamlessly with the main cinema footage. For a look into capturing this type of coverage, take a look at this video from Movie Maker Magazine as they talk with Wolf Creek 2 cinematographer Toby Oliver about his use of GoPros during stunt sequences for the film.Tip #2 Film FlatThe GoPro has a setting called Protune. The adjustments that can be made here are minimal, but really effective. You can adjust white balance, ISO, sharpness and exposure. On top of this, you can set the color to flat which really captures shadows and highlights, but gives you an image that can be matched to your cinema footage through standard color grading processes. The visually stunning Watchtower of Turkey by Leonardo Dalessandri uses the GoPro HERO 3 in conjunction with the Panasonic GH3 and we can see a nice integration between GoPro and cinema footage through successful grading and capturing a flat image.Tip #3 Narrow and WideWhen setting your format, whether it be 1080, 2.7k or 4k, you have choices. These options allow you to capture video in either a narrow, medium or wide angle. Using a narrow or medium angle will allow you to mix your footage more seamlessly in with cinema footage (Camera A), but even using 4k with the wide angle will work in many cases. As Wolf Creek 2 cinematographer Toby Oliver said…If you have a 4K file in post you can zoom in to find a tighter frame and lose the fish-eye feel, without sacrificing resolution.In films such as 2013’s Into the Mind, the crew used the GoPro HERO 3 alongside RED Epics and utilized both the narrow and wide angle feature. By using the GoPro they were able to capture intimate timelapses as well as in-your-face action sequences. While the wide angle lens will usually queue the audience to the presence of a GoPro, limiting its use can be extremely effective and work alongside cinema footage without issues.Tip #4 Let’s Clean Things UpAnother way to effectively integrate GoPro footage with cinema footage is to run post processes other than grading. For example, the GoPro footage shot in Need for Speed was run through an After Effects Plugin called Dark Energy by Cinnafilm. This plugin allows for noise and film grain reduction or additive. Dark Energy was used specifically to clean up the GoPro footage and to bring in the natural grain look that is closer to what the Canon C500 and Alexa footage that was shot for the rest of the film. Currently though, Dark Energy is only available as a plugin for the Windows version of After Effects.There are other noise reduction solutions that are compatible with Mac OSX such as RE:Vision Effect’s DE:Noise or GenArts Sapphire, which has a grain removal. There’s also Neat Video which ‘packs a powerful punch’. See our previous article on Neat Video here.Have you had success integrating your GoPro footage with your cinema style footage?Tell us all about it in the comments below.last_img read more


Djokovic says Wimbledon courts ‘not that great’ this year


first_imgMOST READ LOOK: Jane De Leon meets fellow ‘Darna’ Marian Rivera Members of the ground staff work on the baseline after play finished on center court on day eight at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London Tuesday, July 11, 2017. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland)LONDON — Bothered by what he called a “hole” at Centre Court, Novak Djokovic complained about the condition of the grass at Wimbledon on Tuesday.Djokovic, who defeated Adrian Mannarino in the fourth round, said the courts are among the worst he’s played on in his 13 years at the All England Club.ADVERTISEMENT Pagasa: Kammuri now a typhoon, may enter PAR by weekend Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ LATEST STORIES “He wanted me to show him, so I showed him,” Djokovic said at a news conference. “His reaction wasn’t that great.”Mannarino, who had not played on Centre Court until he faced Djokovic, said his only concern about the surface was that he had to make sure he didn’t slip during the match.“To me, the Centre Court (was) really good, actually,” Mannarino said. “Maybe he was complaining a little bit, but compared to the other courts I’ve been playing on before, it was good.”Tuesday was the first day persistent rain moved over southwest London since Wimbledon started. Because of the dry conditions, the 18 courts saw nearly uninterrupted play over the first seven days of the tournament, which led to consistent wear.Neil Stubley, the club’s head of courts and horticulture, said on Saturday that the measurements his staff had taken over the first week of play showed that the grass was considered to be healthy and within the acceptable standards of use.ADVERTISEMENT Another vape smoker nabbed in Lucena Pacquiao: Until passion is gone, I’ll continue to fight El Nido residents told to vacate beach homescenter_img View comments He also expressed confidence that the surface at Centre Court would be able to hold up over the second week.Simona Halep, whose quarterfinal loss to Johanna Konta was the third match on Centre Court on Tuesday, said she didn’t notice the hole Djokovic had mentioned.And Djokovic said the issue wasn’t one of safety as much as it was about fair play.“Grass is probably the most demanding and complex surface for maintenance,” he said. “The more you play on it, the worse it actually gets, unfortunately.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next China furious as Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong Pagasa: Storm intensifies as it nears PAR Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:44Djokovic wins Laureus Sportsman of Year Award00:50Trending Articles02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games “(The) courts, honestly, are not that great this year and many players feel the same, but it is what it is,” Djokovic said in a television interview after his match ended. “I’m sure they’re trying their best, but I’ve played on better courts.”Djokovic, a three-time Wimbledon champion and 12-time Grand Slam winner, initially expressed his disappointment with the court condition following a third-round victory over Ernests Gulbis on Saturday.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsOn Tuesday, playing with the roof closed, Djokovic could be seen after points picking up or kicking away small portions of grass that had loosened up on the baseline.The second-seeded Serb lodged his disappointment with chair umpire Carlos Bernardes during the match and pointed out the issue afterward.last_img read more