September 18, 2021
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first_img@stevenspowers/Instagram(NEW YORK) — A Brooklyn woman’s decision to post a cardboard sign saying that her bicycle had been stolen has sparked a chain of good deeds from complete strangers.Amanda Needham realized her bike — which she uses daily to get to work — was stolen from the front of her brownstone on March 3, just after a snowstorm.Needham, a writer and filmmaker with her own blog, used yellow paint and cardboard to send a message, writing in part, “To the person who stole my bike, I hope you need it more than me.”“I was despondent and the only thing I could think to do was to just say it, to gently intervene in the public space with my truth, and do it with humor and art,” Needham told ABC News. “I needed to do it for me.”The sign hung on Needham’s front gate for around five days with no response until she heard a knock at her front door that she thought was a delivery.Instead, it was two young men who told her they saw the sign and then handed Needham a used kid’s bike with a flat tire.“I was confused,” she recalled. “It took me by surprise but immediately I realized that is how they were honestly responding to my honesty too.”A few days later, Needham got another knock on her door, this time from an older woman who gave her a hug and told her if she found a bicycle she’d bring it to her.“These people were visibly poor and they were giving from what they had,” Needham said. “What I learned is that each and every one of us can do something. We can all do a little something.”Later that same day, Steven Powers, an antiques dealer who rode his own bicycle past Needham’s house, came by with an offer.Powers, who also lives in Brooklyn, was so taken with Needham’s sign that he offered to buy it from her for $200, the cost of the stolen bike.“Being a cyclist I have sympathy for other cyclists,” Powers said. “I took a picture of it and went back to my studio. I posted it on Instagram and within the community of other antiques and arts dealers, there was a little correspondence on it.”When Powers said he was thinking of buying the sign from Needham, an antiques dealer in the U.K. offered to split the $200 and buy it with him.“That was the little push I needed,” Powers said. “The sign was just graphically interesting. … What I think was interesting about her message was that she wasn’t angry.”Needham, who once biked from London to St. Petersburg, Russia, is using the $200 from Powers to purchase a used bicycle for herself.She took the kids’ bicycle to her neighborhood bicycle repair shop, owned by a female mechanic, JoAnne Nicolosi.Nicolosi offered to repair the bike, while Needham offered to set Nicolosi’s shop up on social media. They are now raffling the bicycle, dubbed #karmacyle, off for free later this month.“I’m not glad that this happened but I’m glad that I’ve gotten to meet people and talk to people,” Needham said. “What I want out of this whole situation is not to care that I lost my bike or got a secondhand bike for someone else, but just to remember that those tiny acts can really go a long way.”Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

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first_img52 brodie St, Hughenden is on the market for $24,900.QUEENSLAND’S cheapest house has been sold for less than the price of a new hatchback.The property at 19 Hardwicke St in Hughenden was listed for sale in “as is” condition for $18,000.Ray White Richmond agent Alison Vohland said the property was now under contract, and had sold “for less than $18,000”.19 Hardwicke St, Hughenden, sold for $18,000.19 Hardwicke St Hughenden“The buyers are from down south and are escaping the cold,” she said. “They really wanted a good block in a nice residential area and the land is probably what sold it.“I don’t think they are going to fix the house — it’s probably too far gone.“It is probably 1920s-era and has the old-style roof where you look up at the corrugated iron, and just a single interior wall.”Inside 52 Brodie St, Hughenden.Ms Vohland said she was seeing more and more older people making the shift north, lured by the warmer climate and affordable housing.She said potential buyers from the more expensive southern capital cities were keen to unlock some equity and secure a house they could lock up and leave to go travel in their golden years.“That’s good news for us,” she said.The most recent Price Predictor Index report from Hotspotting by Ryder noted “an improvement in Queensland regional areas damaged by trends in the resources sector”.“The number of regional Queensland locations classified as Danger markets has dropped from a record high of 31 late in 2016 to 19 now,” the report found.The report tracks sales volumes rather than rises in the median house price to chart growth.Another property on Ms Vohland’s books is 52 Brodie Street, also in Hughenden.The three bedroom cottage is on the market for $24,900 and sits on a 1012sq m block.To put that in perspective — that amount of land alone could set you back over $20 million in some of Sydney’s most expensive suburbs.The kitchen at 52 Brodie St, Hughenden.Ms Vohland said that house was in better condition, and there had already been some interest in the property.“Mostly from tenants down south wanting to get their own home,” she said.Another house at 38 Brodie St in Hughenden is on the market for $40,000.The latest property data from CoreLogic shows the median sales price in Hughenden is $95,000, up 18.8 per cent in the last 12 months. At its peak, Hughenden house prices reached $126,250 in 2012.QUEENSLAND HOUSES UNDER $75,0004 Roper Court, Dysart – $70,00052 Brodie Street, Hughenden – $24,90016 Annandale St, Injune – $49,0002 Menzies Street, Dysart – Offers from $65,00088 James St, Mount Morgan – $50,00013 Connors St, Dysart – $55,00031 Rose Street, Blackall – $50,00028 Walton St, Meandarra – $58,0004 Myrtle Street, Blackall – $70,000More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus17 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market17 hours ago(Source: realestate.com.au )Ms Vohland said the construction of a new solar and wind farm, the creation of a recreational lake and the works of the Hann Highway had created some positivity in the region.In the mining regions, a search for jobs yielded 1430 mining-specific listings on employment website, seek.com.auOf those, 550 job ads were listed for Dysart, where the median house sales price has fallen from a whopping $330,000 at the height of the mining boom to just $71,000.Raine and Horne Moranbah agent Emmarina Watene has 4 Roper Court, which is on the market for $70,000.The lowset three bedroom house is ‘in need of TLC’ but features open plan living, dining and kitchen areas, airconditioning and ceiling fans in every bedroom, an undercover, drive-through carport and side access to the large backyard.“I have had some interest, mostly from investors down south,” she said. “I feel like we have hit rock bottom now and we should hopefully start seeing some improvement.“Buyers are already trying to secure rental properties so the cheaper ones get snapped up quickly.”52 Brodie St, Hughenden sits on a 1012sq m block, a size that could set you back over $20 million in some of Sydney’s most expensive suburbs.Ms Watene said interstate retirees and grey nomads were helping to plug the gap left behind by workers after the downturn, with many using outback towns like Dysart as a base for travelling.Both agents agreed there was plenty of reasons to make the move to the outback.Property data shows that many small mining towns are showing green shoots, with house prices in Clermont up 42.1 per cent in 12 months, reaching $270,000 after a peak of $350,000 in 2012.It is a similar story in Moranbah, where prices have risen 14.6 per cent in the past 12 months to $185,000 after falling from a high of $352,000 in 2007.In Blackwater, 60 houses have sold in the past 12 months with the median sales price now $105,000, which is still $45,000 less than the peak in 2014.Over 170 houses have sold in Emerald during the same period, with median sales prices up 12.1 per cent to $269,000 after a high of $455,000.CoreLogic senior research analyst Cameron Kusher said it would take a long time to get back up to the inflated prices seen during the mining boom.But he said many struggling mining towns were finally showing signs of growth.“It is a slow and subtle rise. I doubt they will boom like they did but after a big decline we are seeing commodity prices lift and more demand for workers in some of these areas,” he said.Mr Kusher said while values were down, many of the towns could still achieve decent rental yields — a positive for investors.“Clearly there is some increasing demand from buyers and renters,” he said.The cheapest house-style accommodation in the Brisbane Greater Region is a one bedroom, one bathroom, relocatable home at Durack, which is on the market for $93,000.And in Sydney, even the most rundown fixer-upper will set you back upwards of $1 million.Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:41Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:41 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedQuality Levels720p720pHD540p540p360p360p270p270pAutoA, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.This is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreenCheap homes on the market00:41last_img read more

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first_imgBudget 2017Finance Minister Winston Jordan has assured that the Ministry is on stream in presenting its Annual Budget for 2017 come December 5, but shied away from any specific details regarding any increases in taxes or fees to be paid by stakeholders. “It’s going to be a lovely budget, don’t worry,” he quipped.Finance Minister Winston JordanMinister Jordan was at the time engaging members of the local media corps on Friday last at the Finance Ministry’s boardroom. Asked specifically by Guyana Times about any increased payments to be made by taxpayers or those seeking to access Government services, Minister Jordan said: “I cannot speak to anything beyond what has already been done earlier in the year, as it relates to the raising of fees, and so on and so forth this year.”He suggested that stakeholders wait for the details, saying “The upcoming budget, we’ll wait on it, in a couple more months. It’s going to be a lovely budget, don’t worry.”Meanwhile, responding to reported criticism on the lack of adequate consultations by Government in preparation of the Budget by sections of the Private Sector, namely the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI), Minister Jordan denied being in receipt of any formal complaint of displeasure from that body.The Minister reminded that he had met with representatives of the Private Sector Commission earlier this year “where I reiterated to them that at the last consultation I had said to them, we can meet every quarter”.He told media operatives that representatives of the Private Sector Commission (PSC) had admitted to him their tardiness in meeting with Government on the annual budget preparations.The Minister did seek to assure stakeholders; however, “We are on track for the Budget for December 5.”He said the relevant personnel were currently assessing the various submissions by Budget Agencies, “to get an understanding of how they were put together and whether they are consistent with what they are looking for”.Since the coalition Government’s ascension to office, two National Budgets were presented early by the Finance Minister.By law, the National Budget should be debated and approved by the National Assembly and approved for assent by the President no later than April 30 of each year.last_img read more

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first_imgOjik poses in a Wakiso jersey after signing a three year deal (Photo by Wakiso Media)WAKISO – Big League Money Bags, Wakiso Giants have completed the signing of Norman Ojik from StarTimes Uganda Premier League side Police FC.The striker who has been on Wakiso’s watch list for a while is believed to have signed a three year deal at the Purple Sharks which will see him at the club until 2022.Ojik is expected to improve Wakiso’s goal scoring totals despite struggling at Police especially this season.Last season, ojik scored 6 goals for the Cops but had managed only two this campaign and as a consequence, spent most of his time coming off the bench.Wakiso head coach Ibrahim Kirya, however believes Ojik is a fine acquisition who will make Wakiso stronger.“He is one of the promising forwards and he brings with him experience, ambition and qualities that make the team stronger, said Kirya after Ojik’s signing.Wakiso is attempting to reach the StarTimes Uganda Premier League at the first time of asking after buying off Kamuli Park last year.After signing for Wakiso, Ojik was quick to underline his targets;“It is a great opportunity for me to show my capabilities, I am here to score goals and help the club gain promotion to the premier league, said the former Soana striker.Ojik joins Wakiso Giants at a time they released a couple of players to Entebbe Football Club as Eddie Mubiru, Jimmy Lule, goalkeeper Robert Ssaka among others.Wakiso Giants host Lira’s Amuka Bright Stars at the Kyabazinga Stadium, Jinja on Thursday, 30th January 2019 in the first game of the second round.Comments Tags: FUFA Big League 2018/19Ibrahim KiryaNorman Ojikpolice fcStarTimes Uganda Premeir LeagueWakiso Giantslast_img read more

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first_imgProf Rossouw Von Solms is the leader of the research team at NMMU.(Image:MyPE) Many unsuspecting people have become victims of internet fraud.(Image:Internet legal advisor) MEDIA CONTACTS • Prof Rossouw von Solms  NMMU research leader  +27 41 504 9604 RELATED ARTICLES • New unit to crack down on crime • Mobile swipe machines take off in South Africa • Smart card ID system for South Africa • Social media to help Nigerian poll Musa MkalipiA team of researchers in the School of Information and Communication Technology at the Eastern Cape’s Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University has come up with a solution to mitigate SIM swap fraud and fraudulent internet banking transactions, using just a USB stick.Like others around the world, South Africans are not immune to internet crime. The NMMU innovation is a solution to help people to avoid falling prey to fraudsters, and will also make it possible to carry out secure internet banking from any computer, even a public one in an internet café.The technology is based on a custom-built operating system residing on the USB drive, and into which the client computer boots. The system is used solely to do online banking, and can’t be cracked, hacked or broken into, according to NMMU.The bank will issue the device in the same manner as a credit card or debit card is issued currently. The USB stick is unique in that it incorporates a SIM card and a modem. The bank sends a text message containing a security code to the user’s phone, which offers double protection.When a client wants to do online banking via the computer, he or she plugs in the banking stick but will first need to enter a PIN number to prove authenticity, after which a communication link is created between the client and the bank that cannot be compromised.“We are currently experimenting with a fingerprint reader on the banking stick to offer maximum protection,” said Prof Rossouw von Solms, a cyber-security specialist and leader of the research team that created the technology. “Thus the bank will know that it is me doing banking as only I have this unique banking stick.”Cutting down on internet banking risksAccording to Von Solms, the USB stick could be a potential solution to most current online banking risks – if not all of them.“More than one thousand cases of online banking fraud have been reported over the last few months,” he said.Von Solms added that South African banks are currently running a fairly secure internet banking system, but that the systems are deployed in an insecure environment where clients are not always aware of the risks, and need to be educated as to what steps to take to prevent themselves from being victims of internet banking fraud.Putting together the solution took about 18 months. The university is doing similar solution-based research in the information and security field, but specifically from an educational point of view. Von Solms said that primary schools, old age homes, and corporate environments are taught about the basic principles of information security. “The main message is to make them information- and cyber-aware,” he said.According to Von Solms, fraudsters use the practice of phishing to get your pin and password to access your bank account. This means that they lure people to a dubious – but authentic-looking – website using emails from what appear to be well known and trustworthy sites, ask them to enter their security details, and then capture those details.“When you enter your user ID and password for internet banking, your details are transferred to a secret destination,” said Von Solms. Once the fraudsters have these details, they are able to gain access to your funds. Illegal SIM swaps have become widespread to intercept one-time-pin codes sent by banks to online clients to finalise a transaction.Mary-Ann Chetty, innovation manager in NMMU’s department of technology transfer, said that the university approached two of the country’s major banks, demonstrated the technology and offered it to them, but neither was interested. “According to them, ‘one more click’ is not acceptable to their online clients,” she said in a statement.A third bank has been approached and negotiations are under way. “We really hope after all the media buzz that has appeared lately, banks will be more serious about taking the solution,” said Von Solms. He added that the team needs a bank to work with them to develop this technology, tweak and implement it.Internet banking fraud on the riseA report on banking services compiled by Clive Pillay from the Ombudsman for Banking Services, says that in 2012, South African internet fraud rose by 3% and mobile banking fraud by 8%. The report also said the growing trend is linked with the rising use of mobile phone banking technology in the country.The ombudsman urged banks not to compromise on security and control in the banking environment, in order to provide a reliable payment system.While victims may take steps to protect themselves, it is difficult for them to identify internet fraudsters as they are usually nameless and faceless.In 2009 only 45 cases of internet banking fraud were reported by the banking ombudsman. In 2010 the number rose to 484 cases. By 2011 there were 591 complaints on record.In 2012, banking fraud complaints constituted 20% of the complaints handled by the ombudsman. Of these complaints, 1 335 were from Absa, 1 260 from First National Bank, 845 from Standard Bank, 648 from Nedbank and 252 from Capitec Bank, according to Pillay’s report.How to protect yourselfAccording to business publisher ITWeb Africa, African nations such as Uganda and Nigeria have announced deadlines for SIM registration, to combat criminal activity. However, in a country like South Africa where these registrations exist, criminals still find a way to scam. Millions are being stolen from clients even with such monitoring.Criminals use online accounts or credit card details to make fraudulent transactions, and online fraud of any form can have serious financial consequences including damage to a person’s credit record.By diligently following a few recommended steps, people can minimise the risk to themselves, their banking details and their funds:Protect your personal and account information at all times;Never give your cheque account or credit card to unknown callers, as this could be a scam. No credible institution will ask for sensitive details over the phone;Never give out your ATM, debit card or credit card number;Report lost or stolen cheques immediately;If an email claims to be from a bank, but the email address is from a Gmail account or similar, it doesn’t come from the bank. Check the grammar and spelling of such messages – often they will be riddled with errors;If you suspect that your credit or debit card has been compromised, cancel it immediately and request a replacement.last_img read more

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first_imgIn a series of five articles, we share stories from Gift of the Givers volunteers in their own words as the organisation marks its 25th year of serving humanity. We find out more from beekeeper, Owen Williams.Being involved with Gift of the Givers gives Owen Williams a sense of purpose. (Image: Owen Williams)Sulaiman PhilipSouth African humanitarian organisation Gift of the Givers, the largest African organisation of its kind, has brought aid and comfort to people in need in 43 countries.It has ongoing feeding programmes in South Africa, humanitarian missions in war-torn Syria and has helped to free South African hostages in Yemen and Mali. The group, founded and led by Dr Imtiaaz Sooliman, has helped to deliver water to drought stricken areas of South Africa and fed refugees in Somalia.William’s met Dr Sooliman while trying to rescue bee colonies that had survived the Knysna fires. (Image: Honeywood Farms)Owen Williams: BeekeeperI met Dr Sooliman for the first time on 15 June 2017 as Knysna was dealing with the fires that devastated the area. In hindsight it seemed that our paths were destined to cross.The day before, I got a phone call from Grant [Liversay, one of my partners in Honeychild Honey] asking how he coud help with protecting our hives. We had saved a few hives but the bees were starving; we needed to get sugar to make syrup to feed the surviving bees. We abhor artificial feeding, but it was either that or lose the colonies we had rescued.Despite his efforts – and Grant is not a man who understands the word no – we were only able to find a few broken bags of sugar from local supermarkets. Remember, the region had gone from extreme drought to a fire storm and back again. We were not the only beekeepers in dire straits.Grant had heard of this humanitarian organisation whose station was located in the mall. So he went up to them to ask if there was any chance they could spare a few bags of sugar. I can only imagine their thinking when faced with this manic, slightly built redhead asking for sugar. After explaining his need, Emily [Thomas], felt it was important enough to speak to Doc.I feel I should point out that Gift of the Givers was working around the clock but Doc wanted to know more about, as Grant said, “this bee story”. I don’t believe in co-incidence, but when the call came Meagan [Vermaas, William’s partner] was giving free therapeutic massages and I was delivering basic goods donated by the community.We met Doc, explained the need and how unique the Cape Honey bee was. Immediatley he wanted to know how Gift of the Givers could help, but he also wanted to see the bees. Back at Honeychild me, Meagan and Doc were all kitted out in beekeeping gear inspecting a colony I had rescued from the side of the N2.We pulled a frame from the hive, and right there in the middle of the comb was the queen. The sun was just beyond the apex and Doc’s face was lit up by the sun. I could see through the veil as he watched the queen and bees working. He looked so amazed and serene.Doc wanted to know how his organisation could help; he wanted to know our objectives. He suggested we set up an NPO – Hope for the Honeybee – and then Gift of the Givers donated R250,000. We ordered pollen substitute, bought sugar for syrup, collected data on losses, designed a strategy for feeding stations and contacted renowned bee scientists.From what I can tell, Hope for the Honeybee and the support from Gift of the Givers is a world first. In the middle of the kind of human suffering that we saw in Knysna, that they took the time to consider the plight of honey bees speaks to the aura of love and caring that surrounds them. I remember that look on Doc’s face when he was inspecting the hive, and my vision became clear. What we are doing is about the survival of the honeybee and benefits humankind as a whole. There are no personal agendas, just this aura that comes from giving.Through Hope for the Honeybee we are tools that spread the help that springs from Gift of the Givers. I read about the landslides in Freetown; hundreds have died. In the past I would have said a silent prayer. This time I found myself wondering if Gift of the Givers might be headed there and if there was a way I could go along.Williams joined the Gift of the Givers humanitarian mission in Knysna after meeting the team. (Image: Gift of the Givers)Read the next profile on Emily Thomas, who works in logitistics at Gift of the Givers.Our first profile was on medical co-ordinator, Dr YM Essack. Click here to read more.Ahmed Bham is the head of search and rescue. Read his story here.Orthopaedic surgeon, Dr Livan Meneses-Turino, shares his experience in Nepal, Haiti, and Palestine.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

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first_imgmarkhachman A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Related Posts Tags:#Microsoft#web center_img Analysts at IDC said Friday that the launch of Windows 8 in October will be directly responsible for boosting the flat U.S. PC market into a period of moderate growth next year. And they were surprisingly specific about how big a bump Microsoft’s new operation system will deliver.David Daoud, research director of personal computing at IDC, said the firm is attributing 5 percentage points of U.S. PC market unit growth to Windows 8.From Flat To Up“In other words, for 2013, the market otherwise would have been flat,” Daoud told ReadWriteWeb. “But for Windows 8, we boost it by about 5%, so that gives it 5% growth. That’s essentially the premium given to Windows 8.”On Thursday, IDC reported that PC growth was slowing in advance of Windows 8’s launch in late October. Just 367 million PCs will ship into the market this year, up less than 1% from 2011 and marking the second consecutive year of growth below 2%, IDC said.Despite the advent of Windows 8, IDC also reduced its worldwide PC forecast for the next few years. IDC now estimates that that worldwide PC shipment growth will average 7.1% from 2013-2016, down from the 8.4% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) previously forecast for 2012-2016. IDC did not formally break out numbers for individual regions.Next year, however, worldwide PC sales in units should jump from 0.9% this year to 6.5%, with growth accelerating to 7.0% and 7.5% in 2014 and 2015, respectively. Much of that demand will come from emerging markets, whose residents are still buying their first PCs, as well as purchasing Windows 8 replacements for those they already own.Part of IDC’s adjusted forecast can be explained by its definition of a PC: IDC still defines a PC as a box with an associated keyboard, whether it be a notebook or desktop computer. As more consumers choose tablets, which typically lack those discrete keyboards, the number of “PCs” sold decreases. Daoud also said that IDC factored in macroeconomic conditions; although U.S. GDP growth is expected to be about 2.0% next year, Europe is struggling and the Asia-Pacific region is “cooling off,” he said.Windows 8 Driving PC DifferentiationOne way that PC makers plan to cope is by using Windows 8 to drive new kinds of PCs. The Windows 8 PC designs Daoud has seen show that PC makers plan to differentiate their products. “So we do think there is the opportunity for growth,” he said.Still, Daoud wasn’t prepared to cast Windows 8 as an unmitigated success, citing increased uncertainty “Windows 8 will have positive repercussions, without any doubt,” Daoud said. “That’s why we’re witnessing consumers waiting for that operating system to hit the market.“But there’s a lot of unanswered questions: the price point, the design, how consumers will receive the product,” Daoud added. “So it’s also a wild card… We’re certainly moving to a crossroads in the industry: we’re moving to a new OS, new user interface, user behavior, new usage model, new software delivered through the app store, which is a new delivery mechanism. So we’re seeing a totally new type of environment, meaning that consumers will need to be educated about this.”PC Makers Getting HammeredGiven the anticipation and uncertainty surrounding Windows 8, the slowdown in PC shipments before the launch of the new operating system should have come as no surprise. But PC makers were apparently caught unprepared.In a conference call with analysts this week, Hewlett Packard chief executive Meg Whitman acknowledged that the number of PCs sold through the channel “softened” or slowed during the second half of July, driving the amount of stock in retailers’ hands “higher than our acceptable ranges,” Whitman said. All told, the company’s commercial revenue slipped 9% and consumer revenue declined 12% year-over-year, HP said.Dell’s results were even worse: consumer revenue slipped 22%, and a combination of weak consumer environment and macroeconomic concerns prompted Dell to cut its revenue forecast by 2% to 5%.“In the quarter, we saw the channel drawing down inventory in anticipation of the Windows 8 launch,” Brian Gladden, Dell’s chief financial officer, reported. Dell’s strategy of maximising profits at all levels of the business failed to pay off, as the only growth the company saw was in the low-value segments, Gladden reported; high-end customers, who undoubtedly knew Windows 8 was coming, held off purchasing PCs.Arrow image courtesy of Shutterstock. Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

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first_imgIs AI Really a Threat to Traditional Jobs? The Significant Role of Smartphones in Human Lives Related Posts Tags:#App#app building#app development#gamification#kid-friendly gaming They might not look much alike, but smartphones are tools just like axes and hammers: They can build, but they can also destroy. A student can use her smartphone to study for a test, but she can also use it as a replacement for social interaction. It’s that second kind of smartphone use that concerns companies like Mappen. Because appmakers are incentivized to maximize retention, many use gamification, in-app purchases, and design tricks to keep users engaged. Although those techniques may not harm adults, a growing body of research shows that they endanger the mental health of children and teens. Addiction, believe it or not, may not be too strong of a word: Pew Research Center found that teens feel a variety of negative emotions, from anxious (42%) to lonely (25%), when separated from their phones. Even when they have their phones, though, they feel uncomfortable, with 90% claiming excessive online time is a problem in their age group.For better or worse, teens aren’t about to stop using digital devices. Rather than turn parents into the smartphone police, software companies should be more responsible in how they build and market their products to teens. Essentials of Kid-Friendly AppsKids and teens don’t know to treat apps, and social apps in particular, with the caution they deserve. To build an app that’s safe for them:1. Limit gamification.When an app like Candy Crush plays an exciting noise and awards you a badge for completing a level, it’s downright difficult to not click through to the next one. You may know when it’s time to take a break, but you can’t assume kids and teens have the same sense of responsibility. What if your boss won’t let you cut out gamification completely? Build in a break reminder. Although multiple standalone apps offer the functionality, few social networking or entertainment apps do. Differentiate yours while doing good for the world by incorporating one. 2. Avoid in-app purchases.Another potentially addictive element in apps is purchased content. Young children, in particular, don’t understand the idea that they can spend real money in virtual games. “Black hat” designers can and do take advantage of that innocence, but those gains never last long. Parents inevitably learn about the purchases, at which point they delete the app.  If you must offer in-app purchases in apps for children, make the opt-in process obvious and adult-oriented. Let the parents decide whether the added value is worth the extra dollar.3. Segment communication channels.If your app has a chat feature — even if it’s limited to those in a certain game or room — be sure to segment minors from adults. Although some apps use algorithms to check for inappropriate comments or requests, filters only go so far. Instead, take your cue from social network Yubo. Not only does Yubo confirm the age of its users, requiring those between the ages of 13 and 17 to get their parents’ permission, but it also provides separate chat spaces for minors and adults. Anything less is an open door to predators. 4. Don’t collect data unnecessarily. Because adults are consumers, companies are champing at the bit to gain all the insights they can about how those adults shop and spend. But time and time again, those data stores are breached by people looking to sell or steal the information inside. Not only do companies have comparably little to gain by collecting demographic and usage data about children, but they put both themselves and those kids at risk. When TeenSafe, an app parents use to track their teenagers, suffered a breach last year that exposed the data of minors, the media wasn’t kind. Had a child been abducted, TeenSafe may have been legally liable as well. Apps for children shouldn’t just be simpler versions of apps for adults. Kids use their phones to connect, explore, and grow. They deserve safe spaces to do. As you design your app for kids, keep safety and simplicity top of mind. Remote Working Culture: The Facts Business Owne… Brad is the editor overseeing contributed content at ReadWrite.com. He previously worked as an editor at PayPal and Crunchbase. You can reach him at brad at readwrite.com. 5 Trendy Gift Ideas for the Secret Santa Exchan… Brad AndersonEditor In Chief at ReadWritelast_img read more

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first_imgShare on Messenger US sports Share on Facebook Share on Pinterest Take the play above from Week 1 against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Rodgers finished this game with 199 yards on 34 attempts. This play alone cost him 41 yards after Davante Adams dropped the ball. Not only that, Rodgers did everything perfectly. He bailed out of the pocket as pressure arrived before making an exceptional throw while moving to his left. The defender didn’t knock the ball away from Adams or hit his hands as the ball arrives. His presence alone is enough to make Adams fluff his responsibility. Adams was a big problem throughout last season. His raw numbers were fine – he caught 12 touchdowns during the regular season – but no other quarterback in the league would have got those numbers from him. Adams cost Rodgers six touchdowns last year. Twenty-eight teams didn’t lose that many touchdowns to receiver error last year – Adams did it on his own. Rodgers can make a receiver like Adams productive because of his superhuman consistency making difficult plays. When Rodgers’ receivers mess up, he simply creates another opportunity for a big play. This could be seen during the Packers’ thrilling victory over the Dallas Cowboys in last season’s playoffs. Rodgers set up the win with a brilliant throw (and a great catch from Jared Cook). But if we go back two plays before that incredible throw, we can see Cook ruining two more opportunities created by Rodgers’ outrageous skills. Most quarterbacks can’t make those throws once, never mind three times in a row when the game is on the line. Photograph: NFL Photograph: NFL On the second throw, Rodgers is flushed from the pocket, Cook is blanketed in coverage, but the quarterback still puts the ball in the perfect spot. Byron Jones has his hand in front of Cook’s chest but Cook’s hands reach the ball first and he has a clean opportunity to catch the ball – but fails. Another great play from Rodgers, and another missed opportunity by his receiver. Cook eventually made the big play down the sideline to set up the game-winning field goal, but Rodgers is the only quarterback in the league who makes those three throws so consistently that his receivers’ limitations are almost completely ignored. Photograph: NFL In the above chart there is a random selection of the top quarterbacks from last season. Each column shows off the percentage to that yard range on the field as well as where that percentage ranked league-wide. Rodgers ranks in the top five in four of the six categories and the lowest he drops in any category is seventh. That is astonishing consistency. Brees was the closest to matching Rodgers while the rest of the league looked more like Rivers, Brady and Roethlisberger: quarterbacks who had great strengths in some areas but major weaknesses in others. With that accuracy it’s no surprise that Rodgers has avoided interceptions at an incredible rate over the course of his career. Eleven quarterbacks have thrown as many, or more, touchdowns as Rodgers has in his career (297). Of those 11 Rodgers has not only thrown the fewest interceptions (72) but if you doubled his interception total he would still have fewer interceptions than the next-best quarterback. Rodgers has thrown 4,657 passes in his career. He has been intercepted on 1.55% of those throws. Brady has a 1.85 interception percentage, no other quarterback in history who has thrown at least 4,500 passes has an interception percentage below 2.18. Rodgers is by far the best quarterback in NFL history at taking care of the ball and the Quarterback Catalogue charting re-emphasizes that. In 2015 he threw a pass that should have been intercepted once every 70.2 attempts, almost twice as good as the second-best quarterback, Sam Bradford. In 2016 he threw an interceptable pass once every 40.89 attempts, fifth-best in the league. None of the quarterbacks ahead of him were as productive and none of them consistently threw into tight windows as regularly or with as much success.That precision plays a big role in Rodgers’ ability to avoid turning the ball over but that’s only part of it. He’s also a very intelligent quarterback, something that is regularly discussed, and possesses rare ability to maximize his pass protection with his footwork, something that is never discussed.Rodgers has had all this success while playing in a scheme that doesn’t use a lot of play action or create a lot of yards after the catch. Twenty-eight quarterbacks used play action more often than Rodgers last year while 17 gained a higher percentage of their yards after the catch. It’s not a scheme that creates easy reads or changes every week to attack the specific weaknesses of its opponents. The only reason the Packers offense works is because it boasts the best quarterback in the NFL. Quarterbacks in general don’t control as much as is suggested but those at the extremes — the Blake Bortles and Jared Goffs at the bottom, or the Tom Bradys and Aaron Rodgers at the top — can drag down or elevate everyone around them.Because the NFL focuses more on counting Super Bowls and playoff victories when it comes to evaluating quarterbacks, Rodgers – with his one championship so far – will always be regarded as one of the best quarterbacks of his generation. That’s wrong: he’s the best quarterback of his generation. Since you’re here… Share via Email Topics It’s long been acknowledged by NFL analysts, fans and coaches alike that quarterbacks take too much blame and too much of the credit. NFL statistics are usually created by the result of the play, which means they are decided by not only the quarterback but also by the receiver who catches – or drops – his passes. When Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Kurt Warner and Drew Brees had their historic seasons, they played with great team-mates, players who didn’t need to be elevated by their quarterback to be productive. That wasn’t the case with Aaron Rodgers last season – and explains why many don’t realize how great the Green Bay Packers quarterback is as he prepares for his first game of the season this weekend. Sixty-seven times last season Rodgers threw an accurate pass that was turned into an incompletion by his team-mate. Those 67 plays cost him at least 875 yards, the most in the league, and at least 11 touchdowns, again the most in the league. Explaining Rodgers’ struggles over the first five games of last season – when he came in for widespread criticism – is easy. Twenty of his 67 lost receptions came in those games, they cost him at least 273 yards and at least two touchdowns. The above play is the first of the final drive. Cook runs down the seam and has safety Byron Jones on his inside shoulder. Rodgers recognizes this and throws a perfect backshoulder pass to Cook. He creates the separation for his tight end by putting the ball in a spot where the defender can’t see it but Cook can grab it. The difficulty of this throw is huge because the quarterback has to time and place the ball perfectly without an angle to work with. Cook had the easiest job but instead of catching the ball he clapped his hands to applaud the throw. Reuse this content Read more Aaron Rodgers: racial injustice is ‘real’ and Kaepernick should be in NFL Green Bay Packers Sportblog features Share on Twitter Support The Guardian Share on LinkedIn That precision Rodgers shows off making difficult throws translates to simpler throws too. I created the Pre-Snaps Quarterback Catalogue, part of which charts an accuracy percentage. It’s a relatively simple idea. Accuracy percentage doesn’t look at whether the receiver caught the ball or not, it only judges the play based on where the ball was placed. None of the throws shown so far in this article were caught, but all would go down as accurate passes for the purposes of accuracy percentage. Rodgers ranked third in overall accuracy percentage but when you break the numbers down based on where each pass was thrown, it becomes clear that he was the most accurate passer in the league. Share on WhatsApp … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. NFLlast_img read more

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