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Women’s Tennis Heads to Kansas for ITA Central Regional Championships


first_img ITA Central Regional Draw Story Links The Bulldogs are coming of an extremely strong showing at the MVC Individual Championships, where they brought home two doubles titles and three singles championships. Senior Summer Brills won the Flight 2 singles championship, while junior Joely Lomas and freshman Liza Petushkova claimed the Flight 3 and Flight 5 titles, respectively. DES MOINES, Iowa – The Drake University women’s tennis team is set to play at the ITA Central Regional Championships in Lawrence, Kan. on Thursday through Monday, hosted by Kansas.center_img Action will get underway at 9 a.m. on Thursday with the final slotted for Monday. Following the ITA Central Regional Championships, the Bulldogs will close out the fall season at the Panther Invitational in Miami, Fla. on Oct. 27-29. Print Friendly Versionlast_img read more


Global fare forecast brings good news for business travellers


first_imgBusiness airfares in the US and Canada are expected to fall next year while ticket prices in Europe and the Asia-Pacific will stay largely flat, according to the latest prediction by American Express Global Business travel.But the annual forecast by the corporate travel manager warns business travellers using economy class to expect rising charges for extras as airlines try to boost revenue through ancillary fees.Amex sees the shifting geopolitical landscape, overcapacity and fierce competition generally keeping a lid on fare growth after limited increases in 2016.“The business travel outlook for next year looked to be similarly subdued with flat to moderate rate increases expected globally across air, hotel and ground transportation,’’ the forecast says.While demand for global air travel remains at a record high, Amex predicts persistently low fuel prices and strong competition will help keep airline fares in check.In North America, overcapacity is combining with fierce competition between legacy carriers and low-cost airlines on heavily travelled routes to produce fare decreases.The forecast predicts US short-haul economy fares will fall by about 3 per cent while international  business fares in the market will fall by about 1.5 per cent. Canada is expected to see a fall of 3.8 per cent on short hall economy flights and 3 per cent on long-haul business.“However, lower fares will be offset by higher ancillary fees as airlines continue to look for new sources of revenue,’’ it says.Flyers in Latin America will also see moderate falls in airfares with Argentina topping the short-haul economy table with a reduction of about 6.5  per cent followed by Brazil at 4 per cent.The forecast expects European fares to stay level with 2016 as airlines face significant headwinds because of the lacklustre economy, security concerns, continued aggressive expansion by low-cost carriers  and pressure from Gulf carrier.Countries expected to see rises include Germany , up 3 per cent in short-haul economy and 1.5 per cent in international  business,  and Poland, up 4 per cent in economy and 3 per cent in business.Fares in the UK are expected to fall 2 per cent on short-haul economy routes and 3 per cent in international business despite the impact of Brexit in devaluing the currency.Business fares in the United Arab Emirates are expected to remain flat on international routes.There will also be only limited growth in the Asia-pacific with Australian business fares showing no growth on international routes  and just 0.3 per cent in short-haul  economy and Singapore expecting a 1 per cent fall in business fares.There is no growth expected for Japan and the massive China market should see a 1.5 per cent rise in short-haul economy fares and just 0.8 per cent international business despite surging demand.  Business fare growth in another fast growing market, India, will also be small.“Airfares will stay flat across much of the Asia-Pacific region, with slight increases depending on route and fare class,’’ the forecast says. “Despite high demand and relative political stability, overcapacity is keeping rates in check.’’last_img read more


Rhodes opens R75m library


first_imgThe new library at Rhodes Universityis a world-class facility.(Image: Rhodes)  MEDIA CONTACTS • Jeanne BergerDeputy Director: Library Services+27 46 603 8063 RELATED ARTICLES • Soweto’s state-of-the-art library • Rhodes hosts world journalism meet • First university for Mpumalanga • Open access to SA journals• Education focus of Mandela Day 2010Janine ErasmusThe new R75-million (US$11-million) library at Rhodes University opened earlier in November 2010, and is expected to significantly boost the learning environment and quality of graduates at the Eastern Cape institution.Speaking at the opening event, Minister of Higher Education and Training Blade Nzimande expressed his approval of the facility and said he was pleased by Rhodes’ commitment to building the library and fostering traditional ways of learning in today’s digital era.The value of a top-quality library that offers access to digital and printed learning resources, and will enhance both learning and research, cannot be understated, said Nzimande, adding that a good library is an important factor in the quality of teaching and research output, and will benefit academics, students and researchers.“I hope that this new library will be a central station for knowledge-building at Rhodes University,” said the minister. “Good libraries are a key of continued investment for universities.”Vice-Chancellor Dr Saleem Badat said earlier this year that the state-of-the-art library will play a vital role in the university’s goal of remaining “one of Africa’s outstanding universities, committed to the production of knowledge and graduates who are knowledgeable, critical, competent, ethical and compassionate”.Despite the fact that it’s a comparatively small university, Rhodes is one of the country’s top academic institutions in terms of research output, said Nzimande. “I have no doubt that the improvement of the library will allow this output to continue.”Cutting-edge facilitiesRhodes’ brand new facility, which covers an area of 4 500 square meters, has almost doubled the current library floor space. The previous library, which was severely overcrowded, with computer terminals vying for space among the books, is to be refurbished and will later house the greater part of the book collections.New features include a round-the-clock reading room, group study rooms, and a number of collections categorised under social sciences, science and pharmacy, commerce, and humanities and education.The as yet unnamed library offers seating for at least 20% of the student body, in line with international standards. The old building seated fewer than 10% of students.Students have the use of a 54-workstation information commons for online research, a 26-seat laboratory which offers information literacy training to users, and the much-lauded Carnegie Research Commons. This project received a R2.8-million ($407 493) grant from the Carnegie Corporation of New York, which funds the establishment of learning institutions.The Research Commons accommodates about 40 staff and users. It offers a quiet space where senior students and academics can carry out their specialised work using cutting-edge electronic equipment, with experienced library assistants on hand to help with research. Scholars may also use a seminar room with audio-visual facilities.The building has been designed with care of the environment in mind. It features thicker, more insulating walls, an energy-efficient air-conditioning system, and an automated system that controls and optimises the flow of fresh air.Disabled and partially sighted users have not been neglected. “This is an area which I am particularly interested in,” said Nzimande, “as I have asked the Department of Higher Education and Training to highlight the needs of students and staff with disabilities.”Impressive achievementThe library’s budget was originally set at R86-milion ($12.5-million), but final costs are expected to total around R75-million, said Badat.He attributed this massive saving to sound management by the project team, well as key components that cost less than expected. He added that the achievement is all the more impressive because the bulk of planning and building took place during South Africa’s 2010 Fifa World Cup preparations, when the country was still struggling to climb out of a recession. Building started in 2008 and took about two years to complete.The national Department of Education granted R50-million ($7.3-million) on condition that Rhodes contributed the balance, whether by fundraising or from its own financial reserves.The university’s development office has managed to raise some R20-million ($3-million), but because the final costs should come in at 13% below budget, this means that just R5-million ($727 385) is outstanding.last_img read more


Music is a Great Investment for Social Cohesion and Nation Building


first_imgMusic is a great way to foster social cohesion and nation building. This is the basis upon which Music is a Great Investment (MIAGI) was established by opera singer, Robert Brooks and pianist, Ingrid Hedlund in 2001.  This is a Pretoria based Non-Profit Organisation with a vision of bringing people, particularly children and youth, together through music while creating platforms for creativity, self-expression, learning, employment, cultural exchange, social development and leadership development. The idea is that music transcends many differences and cultivates innovation.  South Africa contends with factors of racial, cultural, religious, class, gender and age differences. These factors, if not addressed in an intentional manner, can have an impact on the unity of members of society and their ability to work together towards the wellbeing of all its members; as well as the development of a common identity. MIAGI aims to address this through three main methods namely, the MIAGI Orchestra, the MIAGI Music and Community Centres and using the MIAGI international profile to attract investment for development work in South Africa.  The MIAGI Orchestra is made up of group of young South African men and women of all races. This is a classically trained orchestra that have created a unique sound by infusing elements of African Jazz into their compositions. The orchestra, in its makeup, symbolises South Africa’s diversity and through its unique sound demonstrates the country’s distinct Nation Brand to the world. The MIAGI Music and Community Centres aim to provide arts and culture education for children in informal communities. MIAGI has built, developed and managed a music centre on the premises of the Morris Isaacson High School in Soweto. The success of this Centre has inspired the development of an Arts Complex in Khayelitsha aimed at young children. Through the high level visibility of the Orchestra’s international events and the success of Music and Community Centres, MIAGI has attracted investment from the international donor community. The investment has gone a long way in propelling MIAGI’s success.  Follow MIAGI on their official website and on social media on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube to find where you can catch the orchestra performing and how you can play your part.last_img read more


Living in a Cloudy Post-PRISM World, Where Do We Go From Here?


first_imgmarkus rex How Intelligent Data Addresses the Chasm in Cloud Tags:#cloud security#Prism Serverless Backups: Viable Data Protection for … Related Posts center_img Cloud Hosting for WordPress: Why Everyone is Mo… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Much has been made lately about data privacy. Terms like PRISM, Tempora, Xkeyscore have all found their way into our lexicon and the global consciousness. Lavabit and Groklaw have closed their doors in protest. Governments are being rocked by data surveillance exposure.Individuals across the globe struggle with a lost sense of privacy—or, conversely, applaud governments for keeping them safe. It’s a complex issue with shifting battlegrounds, allegiances and outcomes.None of this is really new of course, there are just better, more effective tools to monitor people’s online activities—not just for governments, but for black-hat hackers as well. Pandora’s box is open.Stormy Clouds On The HorizonOthers can debate the risks, rewards and role of these revelations. As a businessman who has spent my life in the open (open source and open standards to be more precise), I’d like to discuss the risks and obligations of corporations in this Brave New World of BYOD, the cloud, big data, the Patriot Act and cybercrime/cyber espionage.It was only a few short years ago that the press and analyst community were touting the potential of the cloud. Around the same time, executives had just begun tossing out their corporate Blackberries and buying their own iPhones, then iPads—bringing their own devices behind the corporate firewall and demanding access and support.More recently came amazing analytical tools made possible by the huge strides in what we call “big data.” Google, Facebook and—we now know—governments, are all taking advantage of this meta data to better understand trends and individual activities.And at ever-increasing rates, companies and their employees are turning to BYOD and the cloud to have cheaper and more unfettered access to critical company data. Unfortunately this data, which is critical to employees to do their job, is also critical to the companies themselves. But it’s also a gold mine for competitors and potentially even fodder for nosey governments. Build into the mix fiduciary and regulatory responsibilities, and we have a real mess—a time bomb just waiting to explode.Gartner has called it a “hair on fire” problem for businesses and the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation predicts that recent revelations could cost U.S. cloud companies up to $35 billion.What Businesses Can DoBusinesses need to face the problem of their data exposure head on. They can start by auditing the use of services like DropBox, Google Drive, Box or Accelion: vendors that force your data off site, either to store it or to “cloud enable” it. Even if data is stored on premises, if it has to travel to off-site servers, which should raise red flags. Once the audit is complete, decide if your company can risk the exposure of that data.An organization has three choices:Keep all your systems and data private under your own controlBuild trust (relationships, legal, general) into an organization to host your systems and dataBuild a hybrid strategy depending on the level of importance of systems and data or other decision criteriaHowever, any solution a business wants to implement should fulfill the following criteria:Allows you or your employees (and customers and partners) to access data and files when they want and where they wantGives you full control and auditabilitySecurely allows the exchange of data across people and other organizationsAllows you or any third-party or interested person to control that there are no built-in backdoors (open source is a great way to accomplish this)A good start is to just take a closer look at your data—where’s it going? Why? Who really controls it? Realizing you have a problem is the first step to taking back control.last_img read more


Filmic Blend Technique – Making Video Look Like Film in Premiere Pro


first_imgWant to make your digital video footage look more like film? In this post we share a quick tip for getting a film look in Adobe Premiere Pro!Film is a chemical process.  A frame of film has color evenly distributed over the whole plate.Video on the other hand, is a digital media, and is made up of scan lines. HD video for example is made up of 1080 lines from top to bottom. This means, that by its very nature, there are spaces between these lines and making video somewhat less ‘full’ than film. At times it can seem as if your video is a little ‘thin’ and needs ‘filling out’.  In this post I’ll demonstrate a Premiere Pro technique to use in those instances when your video needs to seem ‘fuller’ and ‘pop’ like film.Giving your video a film look in Premiere Pro will add to render time, so be sure you have the time to spare!Image before Filmic BlendThe first step is to make two copies of the clip you want to use. This is done in Premiere Pro by hold the ‘Alt’ key and dragging the clip up to the next track in your timeline. If you don’t have a spare track just drag the copy up to the grey area at the top of the timeline and Premiere Pro will automatically create a new video layer. You should end up with something like this:Three Copies of the Video Clip in the TimelineNotice that I have the eyeball turned off for Video 2 & 3 – this is because these are the layers we will be working on and we need to deal with them one at a time (or else we won’t be able to see the changes we make).Apply Fast Blur to Video 2 & 3Fast Blur SettingsWe start by applying the ‘Fast Blur’ Effect to both the copies in Video 2 & 3. What we want to do is blur in the vertical (up & down) dimension to ‘fill in’ the gaps between the lines. I have chosen to use 2 for ‘Blurriness’ although you may be able to get away with less. I have also selected the ‘Repeat Edge Pixels’ option because if you don’t the edges of your image will start to have transparent lines around it (and we don’t want that!)Now, you may think that by adding a blur we will simply be making the image unusable.  However, the beauty of this technique is that we will be looking at the bottom layer with the top two layers ‘blended’ over the clip in Video 1.  What this means is that we still see the sharpness of the clip in Video 1 but with the richness and brightness of the clips in Video 2 & 3…giving a composite image which still looks sharp even though we have been using a blur.Once we have set up the fast blur for the copies in Video 2 & 3 we need to turn on the eyeball for the clip in Video 2 and go to our ‘Effect Controls’ Panel.  With the clip selected, open up the ‘Opacity’ disclosure triangle to find the ‘Blend Mode’ drop-down.Finding the Blend ModesBlend modes are a way of blending the pixels of the image in one layer with the pixels of the image in layers below. They are split into different sections to show the general operation of the modes. These include options that ‘Add’ pixels in various ways or ‘Overlay’ or ‘Darken’ pixels etc.What we are trying to do with the clip in Video 2 is to blend in such a way that we add film-like color depth to the overall image. Note, that this will cause the image to darken but we will deal with that in the next step.Choose a blend mode that works with your image. This will usually be from the ‘Darken’ or ‘Overlay’ categories with common choices being ‘Multiple’ and ‘Overlay’. You can see from the picture above that for this image I felt ‘Soft Light’ from the ‘Overlay’ category gave me the best results (but all images will vary so take your time to choose the one that works best for you).To finish with the copy in Video 2 you need to ‘dial back’ the blend mode by reducing the ‘Opacity’ value for the clip. You can see that I ended up with 47% for this clip.‘Soft Light’ at 100%‘Soft Light’ at 47%As you can see from the above the ‘Opacity’ value is akin to a ‘volume’ dial for the strength of the effect.Now we have a richer color to our clip we are able to turn on the copy in Video 3. Because the clip doesn’t presently have a blend mode selected it will look like the original image with a slight blur.Select the clip.  In the ‘Effect Controls’ open up ‘Opacity’ again and choose from the ‘Add’ category – I used ‘Screen’ which is a slightly less powerful version of ‘Add’ and dialed back ‘Opacity’ to taste!‘Add’ on Video 3 with ‘Opacity’ at 100 %‘Add’ on Video 3 with ‘Opacity’ at 37% – Final Version Original For ComparisonWell, that’s it! To see the difference you’ve made to your clip turn the eyeballs off for Video 2 & 3 and then turn them back on again and see the richness you have added.  This is a handy trick for getting a film look in Premiere Pro.If you aren’t satisfied with the end result try changing the blend modes and opacity values you’ve chosen to increase or decrease the ‘power’ of the effect on the color layer in Video 2 and the brightness layer in Video 3.With this film look technique applied it can make a massive difference in your work…and that leads to happy clients!last_img read more