Tag: 南京桑拿论坛

Suarez on target twice for Barça

first_img In yesterday’s other quarter-final match, Arturo Vidal’s early header was enough for Bayern Munich to beat Benfica 1-0 at home for a slender advantage. The Chilean midfielder struck in the second minute, heading home from five metres after being picked out by Juan Bernat. Vidal had most of the chances for the rest of the game, with Benfica’s defenders doing well to stifle Robert Lewandowski and Thomas M¸ller, the home side’s top-scoring forwards. Lewandowski missed the best opportunity to wrap it up in the final minutes, when he sent a wayward pass for Philipp Lahm with an open goal beckoning. Bayern are bidding to reach their fifth consecutive semi-final, while the Portuguese league leaders are hoping to reach their first since 1990. BARCELONA, Spain (AP): Luis Suarez scored two second-half goals to lead Barcelona to a 2-1 comeback victory over 10-man Atletico Madrid in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final yesterday. Fernando Torres opened the scoring in the 25th minute, but quickly went from hero to villain for Atletico when two reckless tackles saw him sent off in the 35th. Atletico resisted the defending champions’ push for an equaliser until Suarez finally levelled with an opportunistic goal in the 63rd. Suarez then put Barcelona ahead in the 74th when he played Dani Alves wide before sending the Brazil defender’s cross past goalkeeper Jan Oblak with an unstoppable header. Early headerlast_img read more

Mechanic charged for accepting stolen property

first_imgA mechanic found himself before the courts on Monday after he reportedly accepted stolen property from an alleged bandit.Aubry Evans, of Lot 1637 Parfaite Harmonie, West Bank Demerara, denied that on March 2, 2018 at Brickdam, Georgetown, he accepted from Randy Smith a number of power shocks valued $210,000, property of Anthony Singh, knowing same to be feloniously stolen.Police Prosecutor Arvin Moore revealed to the court that the Virtual Complainant (VC) parked his motor car PRR 5795 with the items inside.However, upon his return, he found that the items were missing. As such, the Police were called to the scene. Following investigations Smith was arrested and he reportedly admitted that he gave the stolen items to Evans. As such, the 47-year-old man was arrested, and he admitted to being given the items by Smith. He was later charged. His Attorney, Paul Fung-A-Fat asked that the articles be returned to the VC and for reasonable bail on the grounds that his client was willing to assist the Police with their investigations. Magistrate Judy Latchman granted the defendant $60,000 bail. The case continues on March 26, 2018.last_img read more

Frontal Lobotomies: a Darwinian Mental Health Holocaust

first_imgFrontal Lobotomies: a Darwinian Mental Health Holocaust[1]by Jerry Bergman, PhDThe frontal lobotomy was a psychosurgery treatment based on the evolutionary belief that, as the human brain evolved, the newer sections evolved on top of the older parts. The evolutionarily older brain section was later called the ‘reptile brain.’[2] A lobotomy, the theory postulated, could reduce undesirable ‘reptile’ behavior.[3] In the end, as many as 35,000 persons were lobotomized, producing what neurologist Frank Vertosick called “a mental health holocaust.”[4] We now know most patients replaced their reptile behavior with a sluggish, disoriented, even moribund, countenance. Some were reduced to vegetative states, and many died of cerebral hemorrhaging or other complications.[5]The BackgroundFrench surgeon and committed Darwinist, Paul Broca, concluded the prefrontal lobes were the part of the brain that separated humans from lower animals during evolution.[6] Broca, fascinated by evolution and its implications for brain study, once remarked, “I would rather be a transformed ape than a degenerate son of Adam.”[7]The result of Broca’s insight was that mental illness researchers attempted to surgically separate the parts of the brain that they believed had recently evolved from the parts we had retained from our ancient reptile ancestors. If Broca and others involved in this history had believed the creation account that teaches the human brain was created perfect, it is unlikely that they would have concluded separating brain sections would result in a beneficial treatment.The Reptilian Brain ComplexStructures derived from the human forebrain floor during early fetal development were labelled the reptilian brain complex. The term derives from the idea that comparative neuroanatomists once believed reptile forebrains were dominated by these structures which controlled raw emotions. It was believed this ‘reptilian brain’ was responsible for the instinctual behaviors involved in physical aggression, emotional outbursts, agitation, territoriality and, in short, reptile-like personality traits.[8] Lobotomy was even proposed as a way of achieving social control of the population, such as political discontents.[9]The Triune BrainThe ‘triune brain’ concept then popular among Darwinists proposes the “forebrain comprises three separately evolved and to some degree independently functioning cognitive systems,” said Carl Sagan in 1977, showing how Broca’s Darwinian view continued unchallenged into the 1970s.[10] It proposed that the three brain levels are, the innermost brain was the reptilian brain, next the paleo-mammalian complex (the limbic system), and last, the putative more evolved neocortex, the higher-level brain.[11] These “three quite different mentalities” each had its own memory, motor abilities and emotion control, corresponding to a separate major evolutionary step.[12]  (Watch Carl Sagan teach this as fact in an episode from the original Cosmos series.)The most primitive part consists of the spinal cord, hind brain, and midbrain which contains the basic machinery to run the body’s physiology. The reptile brain is surrounded by the limbic system, the theorized center of emotions. Last, is the neocortex, the most recent evolutionary accretion according to evolution.[13] Furthermore “it would be astonishing if the brain components beneath the neocortex were not to a significant extent still performing as they did in our remote ancestors.”[14]Sagan concluded the triune brain “concept is in remarkable accord with the conclusions drawn independently” from brain studies.[15] It is not unexpected that the lobotomist would draw on this idea to support, and justify, their lobotomy practice.[16]  Even in our everyday language we draw on the reptilian brain inference, such as in the common expression, “a cold-blooded killer.” Sagan concluded his discussion of the triune brain by adding that, while metaphorical, “it may prove to be a metaphor of great utility and depth.”[17]The human brain is the most complex piece of matter in the known universe.Early Application of the Reptile/Triune Brain TheoryOne of the first persons to attempt to apply the theory of the reptilian brain to humans was Professor Gottlieb Burchardt. He experimented on six schizophrenia patients confined at the Neuchâtel asylum in Switzerland. Of the six, all whose condition was deemed incurable, Burchardt declared the four survivors were greatly improved, even cured.[18]  His report of the results at a 1889 Berlin medical conference was so favorable that it influenced others to attempt to replicate his procedure.One person who replicated Burchardt’s work was Egas Moniz (1874–1955), clinical Professor of Neurology at the University of Lisbon.[19] He determined that the primitive “reptile brain” included the thalamus. Thus, he attempted to sever the connection between the reptile brain and the newer part, the frontal area. Moniz first used the technique on a female patient. He drilled holes in her head, then poured alcohol into the holes to destroy the white fibers connecting the frontal lobes to the rest of the brain.In the words of Donald, Moniz was skilled at “presenting the unpalatable in such a way as to make it attractive” by referring to his “butchery as psychosurgery.”[20] Moniz then proceeded to use his crude hacking procedure on a variety of mental patients, all of whom he declared to be improved.[21] He never did a proper scientific follow-up study on his patients.Dr. Walter Freeman Takes the LeadSoon, Dr. Walter Freeman, a Yale graduate and Professor at the George Washington University School of Medicine, learned of Moniz’s allegedly wonderful results. It set Freeman on a course that would define his life’s work. His first victim was Alice Hammatt who was treated in 1936 after she was given the choice of being locked in an asylum for the rest of her life, or being lobotomized. She chose the operation.Freeman soon experimented with a faster method to lobotomize, namely to use few mallet taps on an ice pick to break through the top of the eye socket. Then he would move it around to sever the connection between the frontal cortex and the rest of the brain. An advantage was he did not have to bore a hole through the thick skull bone, but only had to puncture a small hole behind the eyeball where the skull was very thin. For its enthusiasts, an ice-pick lobotomy could be done by anyone with a strong stomach, and could be done anywhere. The cheap ice pick procedure became the psychosurgical choice in state hospitals across the country.[22]Freeman’s most famous case was 23-year-old Rosemary Kennedy, the oldest sister of the former American President, John F. Kennedy. She underwent a prefrontal lobotomy in an attempt to control her sometimes extreme emotional outbursts. After the surgery, Rosemary was left with the mental capacity of a toddler, unable to walk, or even follow simple directions. She never recovered.[23]The Harm DoneThe total number of persons lobotomized by Freeman alone was close to 3,500.[24] During the 1940s and 1950s, lobotomies were performed on close to 50,000 patients in the United States, and around 17,000 in Western Europe and 4,500 in Sweden.[25] Most were women and some were children as young as four.[26] How many of these died prematurely from the operation is unknown, but the number is significant, estimated at up to six percent, or as many as 45,000 persons.[27] Common serious problems included severe hemorrhaging, brain seizures, loss of motor control, partial paralysis, enormous weight gains, and intellectual and emotional malfunction. If a major blood vessel was damaged or severed, it could cause death, as it did in close to 5% of those treated.[28] Lobotomy was used to treat not only the mentally ill, but also the criminally insane. It was even used to ‘cure’ political dissidents.[29]New anti-psychotic drugs, such as chlorpromazine, soon became widely available. These drugs were much more effective than psychosurgery, and could always be stopped if the side effects were problematic. Psychosurgery was not reversible, thus the surgical treatment method was soon superseded by chemical treatment.As a result, the use of lobotomies began to decline only in the mid- to late-1950s, but was still occasionally used well into the 1980s.[30] Opposition eventually became fierce because of the many failures and mixed results. As a result, “Aside from the Nazi doctor Joseph Mengele, Walter Freeman ranks as the most scorned physician of the twentieth century.”[31]The 1949 Nobel Prize Awarded for the ProcedureAmazingly, the 1949 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was given to Egas Moniz “for his discovery of the therapeutic value of leucotomy in certain psychoses”—a treatment that was then considered “one of the most important discoveries ever made in psychiatric therapy.”[32] The award is one more evidence that, in its heyday, lobotomy was “not an aberrant event but very much in the mainstream in psychiatry,” uncritically supported and performed enthusiastically in leading university hospitals in countries around the world.[33]The fact is, the lobotomy fad “was ultimately created by physicians—in many instances, able men who had contributed significantly to medicine earlier in their careers.”[34] Freeman was even able to publish a textbook on his lobotomy technique with one of the most prestigious scientific publishers then and today.[35] This is in spite of the fact that the procedure was based “on the flimsiest of theories, and on completely inadequate evidence.”[36] Support of the press was critical in its widespread acceptance:Outside the medical profession itself, lobotomy was promoted by the popular press. Magazines and newspapers, whose readers number in the millions, popularized each new ‘miracle cure’ with uncritical enthusiasm, while commonly overlooking its shortcomings and dangers. These popular accounts created enormous interest in lobotomy among patients and their relatives, many of whom had abandoned hope, and they sought out the physicians mentioned in the articles with the desperation of a drowning person reaching anything to stay afloat.[37]In view of the widespread support for the procedure, awarding a Nobel is less ironic than it first appears, but still creates credibility problems for science and medicine. Only humans have large prefrontal lobes. Darwinism maintains that humans evolved from some ape-like creature which had fairly small frontal lobes. The solution to mental illness, therefore, must relate to this difference.[38] Since it did not seem to matter much where the cuts in the cerebrum were made, that evidence was inconsistent with the evolutionary “triune brain’ concept that had justified lobotomy in the first place.The researchers also found that the positive effects of treatment were often only temporary, and most patients relapsed in time, indicating that the damage caused by the treatment was either being repaired or other parts of the brain were taking over functions lost by the treatment.[39]The End of the ProcedureThe triune and reptile brain theories lost favor with most comparative neuroscientists in the post-2000 era.[40] The reasons include the hoped-for results of psychosurgery never materialized.[41]  Even though the evolutionary assumption was generally retained, the focus of treatment became health improvements in those suffering from mental illnesses.[42] Meanwhile, the damage done to countless patients before the procedure was finally abandoned was profound.Today, the history of lobotomy and the harm it has done is largely ignored in the standard histories of psychology and psychiatry.[43]After Freeman’s surgical privileges were removed, he transferred his case files to his van and took cross country trips at his own expense, one lasting six-months, to do a follow up on former patients and present papers at professional meetings.[44]  He claimed he followed up on several thousand patients.[45] Freeman’s assessments of the results of his technique, Vertosick claimed, “proved vague and unconvincing.”[46] Some people were happy with the results, or they claimed they were, but all too many were not.[47]ConclusionsThe leading scientists involved in developing the lobotomy procedure accepted evolution. They appealed to experimental evidence that seemed to show part of the brain was important in expressing so-called ‘primitive’ emotions. Consequently, their evolutionary worldview predisposed them to conclude that severing certain connections would produce a large reduction in these primitive behaviors. Lobotomy is now a very embarrassing part of medical history that we can look back on, wondering how and why it was ever widely accepted by both scientists and physicians.[48]The Darwinian Approach ResurrectedA newer, more refined procedure using advanced techniques, called a cingulotomy uses electrodes to destroy a coin-sized area of the frontal lobes called the cingulate gyrus. The research of a trial by Harvard Medical School on 34 patients with totally intractable severe anxiety/depression caused by a variety of non-schizophrenic factors only around 1/3 improved.Whether this procedure will prove successful in treating mental illness awaits future research and long term follow-up.[49] Ironically, the procedure is based on the theory that the cingulate gyrus, a “ribbon of brain tissue is thought to be a conduit between the limbic region, a primitive area involved in emotional behavior, and the [evolutionary advanced] frontal lobes.” Consequently, “cingulate can trace its intellectual heritage right back to the chimps Beckey and Lucy,” and even to Freeman himself.[50]References. [1] Based on my article Frontal Lobotomies and Darwinism—An Example of Harm to Life and Health. Journal of Creation. 32(3):119-123. 2018.[2] Johnson, Jenell. 2016. American Lobotomy: A Rhetorical History, University of Michigan Press, Ann Arbor, MI, pp. 109–110.[3] Comer, 2013, Abnormal Psychology, Worth Publishers, New York. 2013. p. 52.[4]Vertosick, Frank.T. Jr., 1997. Lobotomy’s Back. Discover Magazine. 18(10):68, 70.[5] Kang, L and Pedersen, N., 2017. Quackery: A Brief History of the Worst Ways to Cure       Everything, Workman Publishing, New York. p. 158.[6]Valenstein, Elliot, 1991. Progress in Brain Research, Volume 85, pp. 539–554, chapter 27, ‘                The Prefrontal Area and Psychosurgery,’ p. 540.[7] Brabrook, E.W., 1881. ‘Memoir of Paul Broca’, The Journal of the Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland 10: 242–261; Sagan, Carl. 1979, Broca’s Brain, New York: Random House. p. 6.[8] MacLean, P. D., 1990. The Triune Brain in Evolution: Role in Paleocerebral Functions, Springer, New York.[9] Mark, Vernon and Frank Ervin. 1970. Violence and the Brain. Medical Dept., Harper & Row.[10] Sagan, Carl, 1977. The Dragons of Eden. New York: Random House. Watch this video clip from Cosmos.[11]Harth, Erich, 1982. Windows on the Mind, Morrow, New York, p. 116.[12] Sagan, 1977. p. 55.[13] Sagan, 1977, p. 56.[14] Sagan, 1977, p. 60.[15] Sagan, 1977, p. 57.[16] Sagan, 1977, p. 52.[17] Sagan, 1977, p. 79.[18] Stone, James L, 2001. Dr. Gottlieb Burckhardt—The Pioneer of Psychosurgery, Journal of the History of the Neuroscience, 10(1):80.[19] Alexander, Franz and Sheldon Selesnick. 1966. The History of Psychiatry. New York: Harper & Row. p. 284.[20] Donald, G., 2012. When the Earth Was Flat: All the Bits of Science We Got Wrong, Michael O’Mara Books, London. p. 134.[21] Valenstein, 1991, p. 539.[22] Vertosick, 1997, p. 70.[23] Sternburg, Janet. 2015. White Matter. A Memoir of Family and Medicine. Portland, OR: Hawthorne Books.[24] Donald, G., 2017. The Accidental Scientist: The Role of Chance and Luck in Scientific Discovery, Michael O’Mara Books, London, p. 139.[25] Comer, 2013, p. 358; Anonymous. The rise & fall of the prefrontal lobotomy, scienceblogs.com/neurophilosophy/2007/07/24/inventing-the-lobotomy.[26] El-Hai, J., 2005. The Lobotomist: A Maverick Medical Genius and his Tragic Quest to Rid the World of Mental Illness, Wiley, New York pp. 174–175.[27] Comer, R., 2013. Abnormal Psychology, Worth Publishers, New York,  p. 458.[28] Valenstein, 1986, p. 252.[29] Sternburg, 2015.[30] Vertosick, 1997, p. 68.[31] El-Hai, 2005, p. 1.[32] Valenstein, 1991, p. 539.[33] Valenstein, Elliot. 1986. Great and Desperate Cures: The Rise and Decline of Psychosurgery.  New York: Basic Books. p. xi, 4.[34] Valenstein, 1986, p. 5.[35] Freeman, Walter and James Watts. 1950.  Psychosurgery in the Treatment of Mental Disorders and Intractable Pain, Second Edition. Oxford: Blackwell Scientific.[36] Valenstein, 1986, p. 62.[37] Valenstein, 1986, p. 5.[38] Vertosick, 1997, p. 71.[39] Valenstein, 1991, p. 544.[40] Kiverstein, J., and Miller,  M., The embodied brain: towards a radical embodied cognitive neuroscience, Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 9(237):1–11, 2015.[41] Donald, 2012.[42] Franks, D., Handbook of the Sociology of Emotions, Springer, Boston, MA, chapter 2: The Neuroscience of Emotions, pp. 49–50. 2006.[43] Alexander and Selesnick. 1966. p. 284; Schultz, Duane. 1969. A History of Modern Psychology. New York: Academic Press, 1969.[44] Sternburg, 2014. p. 178.[45] Valenstein, 1986, pp. 276-280[46] Vertosick, 1997, p. 71.[47] Sternburg, 2014. p. 178.[48] Kang and Pedersen, 2017, pp. 145–150.[49] Vertosick, 1997, p. 68.[50] Vertosick, 1997, p. 72.Dr. Jerry Bergman has taught biology, genetics, chemistry, biochemistry, anthropology, geology, and microbiology at several colleges and universities including for over 40 years at Bowling Green State University, Medical College of Ohio where he was a research associate in experimental pathology, and The University of Toledo. He is a graduate of the Medical College of Ohio, Wayne State University in Detroit, the University of Toledo, and Bowling Green State University. He has over 1,300 publications in 12 languages and 40 books and monographs. His books and textbooks that include chapters that he authored, are in over 1,500 college libraries in 27 countries. So far over 80,000 copies of the 40 books and monographs that he has authored or co-authored are in print. For more of his articles on CEH, see his Author Profile.Dorothy Parker allegedly said, “I’d rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.” If that’s a bottle of vegetable juice, we would agree. Whoever said it, somebody put it to music here. Humor aside, what you have just read by Dr Bergman is no laughing matter. It’s another shocking example of the evil fruit of Darwinian thinking. His books show many others. Read The Darwin Effect and How Darwinism Corrodes Morality to become disgusted with the rotten fruit that issued from Darwin’s tree of death. And for more examples of stupid ideas that Darwinism launched, read Dr Bergman’s book, Evolution’s Blunders, Frauds and Forgeries. Ideas have consequences!    —Ed.(Visited 909 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

2010 security exercise goes aerial

first_img18 March 2009Two of South Africa’s most popular radio personalities were taken hostage on Tuesday in a police and defence force simulation of possible security threats to the 2009 Fifa Confederations Cup and 2010 Fifa World Cup.During “Exercise Shield 3”, Idols judge and 5fm radio presenter Gareth Cliff and Maurice Carpede from 94.2 Jacaranda FM were dragged out of a briefing by two armed masked men and forced into a South African Police Service (SAPS) Cessna Sovereign Citation jet at Swartkops air force base outside Pretoria.During the drama, the South African Air Force (SAAF) scrambled two Hawks which intercepted the hijacked plane and forced it to the ground, where police vehicles and emergency personnel were waiting.The hijackers had no option but to give in and land the plane. Fully armed Special Task Force and South African National Defence Force (SANDF) members surrounded the plane and hostage negotiations began.After intensive negotiations, the “victims” were freed and the “hijackers” arrested with the help of members of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA).The police deployed trained dogs to search bags and parcels for any explosives, assisted by an armed robot operated via remote control.Despite the bad weather, the joint exercise between the SAPS, SANDF, NIA, SAAF and government departments left international reporters, Cabinet ministers and visitors impressed as it revealed the extent of South Africa’s security skills and readiness for hosting world football’s showpiece events.Speaking to BuaNews after the exercise, SAPS National Deputy Commissioner Andre Pruis said the exercise proved that South Africa’s law enforcement agencies were prepared for any security risks that could arise during these events.South Africa has spent more than R665-million on purchasing essential equipment, including six new helicopters with systematic cameras and 92 route vehicles, for the Confederations Cup and World Cup.During these events, thousands of security force members will be strategically deployed to every corner of the country to ensure that visitors and citizens are protected.Pruis added that the safety and security measures employed by South Africa’s national joint operational and intelligence structure would leave many surprised.“We are prepared, and we can assure the whole world that our safety and security plans will effectively make South Africa a crime-free zone during the 2010 Soccer World Cup and 2009 Confederations Cup.”Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

World’s first self-propelled round baler unveiled

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Vermeer has introduced a unique piece of equipment at this week’s Husker Harvest Days — the world’s first self-propelled round baler. The prototype ZR5 self-propelled baler looks to make quick work of any field while offering ride quality and maneuverability.“Our patent-pending suspension technology allows operators to better handle the bumps and jostling that naturally comes with baling hay,” said Josh Vrieze, Vermeer product manager. “If you think about all those bumps over the course of the day or multiple days, ride quality can really impact the operator. In the ZR5, operators experience a smoother, more comfortable ride with the cab uniquely positioned over the suspension.”With a nod to the lawn care industry, Vermeer has applied zero-radius turning to the steering system in the self-propelled machine. This feature allows operators to gain better maneuverability and driving efficiency than a conventional tractor-baler combination.“Operators can spend less time turning in the field and more time baling. The zero-radius turning can eliminate skipping a windrow to make the turn or swinging out wide to get into the next windrow,” adds Vrieze. “And, when it’s time to head to the next field, zero-radius turning can be disengaged. Folks who have operated other self-propelled machines will appreciate the dual steering functionality; with the zero-turn disengaged, the operator steers the ZR5 using the front wheels for a smooth, confident ride.”While still a prototype, automating the baling process, as well as providing the ability to automatically make real-time adjustments based on field, crop and operator inputs, are just a couple of the goals Vermeer has for the ZR5. Integrated quarter-turn technology is part of the ZR5 baling automation process. During the tie-cycle, the machine can automatically rotate to the left or right, positioning the bale parallel to the windrow upon ejection. When placing bales parallel to the windrow, the picking up process can be completed up to 35 percent faster.Keeping machine maintenance simple is another objective Vermeer is striving to achieve. The bale chamber can be removed for maintenance in a matter of minutes, helping to ensure producers are spending time productively in the field.“Farmers and ranchers are facing one of the same challenges they did in 1971 when Gary Vermeer introduced the round baler, and that is labor,” said Mark Core, Vermeer executive vice president. “As access to labor in rural areas becomes more limited, we believe the type of innovation needed to design the ZR5 will need to continue to pave the way for more efficiency, productivity and an eventual reduction in labor needed to produce the same amount of feed. I’m happy to say Vermeer is proud to be making this investment in innovation and dedicated to leading the way.”last_img read more

Nationwide presents long-term care planning webinars

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest  Nationwide, in partnership with Ohio Farm Bureau, is excited to offer a series of educational webinars designed to help members better plan for and live in retirement. Farm Bureau members have access to interactive, educational online financial workshops from Nationwide.Did you know that seven in 10 Americans need some form of long-term care assistance during their lifetimes? What can you expect and how will you pay for it? Learn more from Nationwide about how, as a farmer or rancher, to better estimate long-term care expenses in your community and begin building a plan to fund it.There is no cost to attend.Long-term care webinar datesNov. 12Dec. 10Dec. 17last_img read more

3 countries + 2 geocachers + 1 geocoin = an incredible twist of fate

first_imgGabi, Mary, and the My Froggy Friend geocoinA German geocacher and a Canadian geocacher walked into a geocaching event… well, they actually met at an event, and through a twist of fate, discovered they had something amazing in common.Last January, Gabi (Whaleshark) travelled from cold, snowy Germany to vacation in warm, sunny Florida. She did a lot of geocaching on her trip, but the crown jewel was logging Florida’s oldest cache, Christmas Cache GCFA. It’s an arduous 3.5 mile hike full of everything you’d expect from a Florida adventure: trails, lush greenery, mud, swamps, deer, mosquitoes, rats, snakes, and alligators. But the publish date of the cache is December 25, 2000 (hence the name Christmas Cache) which helps a lot of people fill their Jasmer Challenge grid. Thus, the desire to find this particular (and popular) cache.The path to GCFA begins easily enough…But along the way… Seriously, there are alligators. Here’s a pic. There are literally dozens of photos just like this one in the cache gallery.After the sweaty and buggy journey of finding and logging the cache, Gabi headed back. Along the trail she spied a piece of plastic partially buried in the dirt. She bent down to pick it up thinking it was merely garbage (any good geocacher knows to always CITO).Gabi at GCFA in January 2017Surprisingly, the plastic bag was packed tightly under quite a bit of dried mud. After some digging, out popped a bag with a Signal the Frog geocoin inside. Gabi thought, “Wow! What a great find again after finding a very historical cache. What a great day it turned out to be!” Gabi planned to clean up the coin and contact the owner once she had a little downtime.Gabi found a muddy geocoinThe very next evening she headed to a nearby Geocaching Event which had been organized, “to celebrate geocacher friendships that develop across borders, connect continents.” About two dozen attendees from many areas came together to meet, mingle, discover coins, and talk geocaching.Gabi, Mary, and other geocachers at the event where they metGabi struck up a conversation with a geocacher named Mary (Muskoka Pearl) who was down for the third year in a row from Canada. The topic of the Christmas Cache came up, and Mary told the story of her trek to the cache with 6 other Canadians the previous year — which also happened to be one of the wettest on record. The trail to the cache was 6 inches deep with water in some areas, and the mud was beyond anything imaginable. She told Gabi of how she had taken trackables to drop into this special cache, but somewhere along the way she lost her favorite one, probably in the watery, muddy path.This is how wet and muddy the path was in February 2016 for Mary & crewMary’s visit to GCFA the year before was the wettest year on record for the areaAt this point Gabi’s eyes widened, “Oh my! Could it be? Wait right here!” She ran to her car, looked in her rucksack, found the plastic bag caked with mud, then rushed back in to show Mary. Yup. The My Froggie Friend geocoin was in sad shape and covered with mud, but it was the exact coin Mary had lost almost a year before. The Froggy GeoCoin when it was brand newThe Froggy GeoCoin after it had been foundThe Froggy GeoCoin after a good cleaningThe women gave each other a big hug because they couldn’t believe the series of events that led up to their meeting. What are the chances of something this amazing happening?As Gabi puts it, “So Mary and me are thinking now, we are two very happy people, come together in an unbelievable, wonderful and miracle way, to get know each other, so this must be a very special friendship, that starts right now…”And as Mary sums it up, “Clothing is wet, but spirits are high. Mission accomplished.”Share with your Friends:More SharePrint RelatedPhenomenal geocaching community stories from 2017December 26, 2017In “Community”August’s Geocacher of the Month: I hope you’re not afraid of awesomeAugust 20, 2014In “Community”Houma Travel GeoTour (GT53)July 3, 2018In “GeoTours”last_img read more

Einztein Launches PhD-Curated Online Education Search Guide

first_imgRelated Posts Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting audrey watters Tags:#news#web 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketcenter_img A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Einztein, a non-profit online education search guide, launches the public beta of its service today, with a curated collection of more than 2,000 complete online courses across 35 subject areas. Einztein’s catalogue includes both paid and free courses from over 100 providers and is not restricted to university course offerings. However, all of the courses searchable via Einztein’s site have been reviewed by its team of scholars, who have assessed the quality and relevancy of courses in terms of subject area, language, materials, completeness, and accessibility. “Search engines have inherent limitations when it comes to filtering content and discovering useful academic courses, and these shortcomings aren’t being adequately addressed elsewhere,” says Marco Masoni, CEO of Einztein. “This is why we’ve taken up the task of applying our team’s academic expertise to exclusively selecting courses that meet a quality threshold based on what learners are looking for when they initiate an online search.”??Online education has become increasingly popular in recently years, in part because the economic downturn has driven people back to school, but also in part because technological innovations have made online courses more palatable for teachers and students alike. As we’ve written before, enrollment in distance education courses increased by over 20% for the 2008-2009 academic year, while overall community college enrollment increased by less than 2%. Many traditional higher ed institutions are scrambling to meet the needs of students who are interested in taking classes online. To that end, Einztein plans to partner with schools to help them promote their online course catalogues.Einztein also plans to launch its own social knowledge network, BrainWave, later this year. This will include a premium subscription service that will include a suite of online social tools to allow students and teachers to communicate and share their online publications, research and discussions.According to Masoni, “We see the trend toward offering free online courses as an opportunity to create an online knowledge network where online learners and providers (including academics) can connect their favorite courses to relevant knowledge and information, exchange resources with other members sharing their academic interests, and join like-minded learners to explore their academic concentration.”The move to online education has given rise to several related services lately, including OCWSearch.com, a search engine for open courseware offerings and Udemy, a site where anyone can conduct their own online classes. There are still many questions that these and other sites – along with the academic institutions themselves – must resolve – at the very least how to handle the question of accreditation. But it does seem as though there is a lot of potential for innovation and growth in online education technologies.last_img read more

A Look Inside the Post-Production Process Behind “It”

first_imgLet’s take a look at the post-production workflow and thought process behind the year’s biggest box office success.Top image via Warner Bros. After the smashing debut of the recent adaptation of It, we take a look behind the scenes at the editing booth for some production tips and tricks based on piecing together the horror reboot. We’ll also dive into the color grading process and figuring out the “look” of the town of Derry and the underground world of Pennywise the clown.The Editing ProcessImage via ProVideo Coalition.The most recent Steve Hullfish interview dives into the stellar editing team behind It and what the process was like for the post-production team. While discussing the themes and know-how behind editing a horror film, Jason Ballantine, the lead editor, explains the difference in pacing and rhythm that comes with horror. A story like, this broken up into individual encounters with Pennywise for each of the characters, requires a particular approach. So each segment had to have the appropriate rhythm and setup for the inevitable jump scare.We were definitely conscious of trying to mix the rhythms up. Each encounter became somewhat more elaborate for the jump-scare in terms of what was shot.The first assembly was massively long. It was over three and a half hours and that was the fine-cut scripted length – not a sloppy assembly. So it did mean that screen time had to be dropped, either through the tightening of existing sequences or even scene deletions.One of the key factors when cutting this film was considering the original source material, as well as the first version of the film from the ’90s. There are “horror rhythms” to consider, as well as filmmaking rhythms Ballantine took into consideration:Cutting a film is a marathon, not a sprint. You have to emotionally and physically pace yourself. Thinking of the test screening process, I recognize a pattern heading into them thinking, ‘I’m pretty happy with the way this cut is feeling.’ And then, about 10 minutes into the screening, I’d be thinking, ‘Oh my God, I have so much work to do.’ You see where the audience is engaged or restless. Are they verbally expressing their excitement (or fright)? Are they outwardly rooting for the good guys or laughing out loud?Image via Warner Bros.When discussing the importance of a good relationship with the director, Ballantine considers this “everything.” A good rapport with the crew will not only make everybody’s job easier, it will also guarantee future work down the road. Beyond this, a healthy relationship with the director, Andy Muschietti, will also yield a better finished product.My relationship with the director is paramount. It has to be based on a true sense of trust. The cutting room has to be an environment that they consider as their safe house. They have to feel comfortable enough to openly discuss insecurities, concerns, deficits and shortages. Filmmaking is a compromise no matter what the budget level. The director has been dealing with compromises from the beginning. I just want to assist in making the best film possible from the available resources. I will speak truthfully and be respectfully opinionated. I will flag things that aren’t working, but also offer solutions.Image via Warner Bros.On how the seasoned editor approaches a scene, Ballantine describes his day-to-day workflow from getting his dailies to sitting down with the director looking through what he’s pieced together. Upon receiving the dailies, Ballantine looks through the footage quickly to see if he needs any pickups or reshoots to report back to set. Once he’s done this, his assistant editors make sure all the footage has been copied over before returning the footage for formatting.Beyond the basic checking of coverage, I start to formulate the first assembly by watching every single take. I do my selects and pull everything that’s of any value or interest. In watching the scene I start to formulate how it will come together. For example: what framing size and angle for what line delivery? Also I’m collecting reaction shots and insert details as I go. I just compile in take order.From there, Ballantine asks his assistants to arrange the selects in script-order so that he can have a better understanding of the structure, as well as work at a faster pace without worrying about getting lost in the footage. Once he has a good chunk of the selects in the order he wants, the finished product from that batch will be about a third of the original length (the original cut of the film was just short of four hours long).(The crew edited It on Avid. For more info on a FREE version of Avid’s NLE, check out our past coverage and review here.)Color Grading the FilmImage via Warner Bros.Recently postPerspective sat down with the colorist, Stephen Nakamura, about taking on the film after the trailer went viral. One of the most unique aspects of the film’s grading was how the film changed once the initial trailer premiered. The studio had no idea just how excited people would be to see this remake come to life, and the YouTube view count was certainly a good indication.A crucial step in the color process was the lighting they had to work. The majority of the horror and scares that happen throughout the film occur in broad daylight or well-lit interiors. Playing against the tropes of the horror genre helped this film and its crew succeed where others have failed, creating a look truly unique to the story and vision.Part of the genius of this color and lighting scheme is how the plot unfolds. The majority of the film takes place in well-lit places as we meet the “losers club.” So, as the film moves forward, and the last act takes place in the dark, shadowy sewer system, the characters are surrounded by darkness, the stakes are high, and we are emotionally invested. Nakamura explains this structure as a way that helped him work with the editors and director coloring the film, according to the themes and tonal shifts that occur throughout the movie.Image via Warner Bros.In regards to shooting the film (with the Dolby Cinema HDR capabilities), not only could the image be brighter than usual, it also allowed Nakamura to darken the screen like never before while maintaining detail. This level of control over the image brought to life a terrifying and engaging experience for audiences around the world. The staggering box office numbers indicate that this much thought, time, and care really paid off in the end.But when you’re in that space, you can also make things appear much much darker too. So the overall level in the theater can get really dark but because of that contrast you can actually see more detail on a person’s face, or a killer clown’s face, even when the overall level is so low. It’s more like you’re really in that dark space.Nakamura suggests viewers see the film in a Dolby cinema if possible to experience the film how he intended it. As for the dreadful killer clown in the film, there was some work done in the DI contributing to the overall appearance of the clown.We had alpha channel mattes cut around his eyes for every shot he’s in and we used the color corrector to make changes to his eyes. Sometimes the changes were very subtle — making them brighter or pushing the color around — and sometimes we went more extremeAs for the software used on the film, Nakamura used none other than DaVinci Resolve, citing its intuitive, easy-to-use nature as its strongest asset. The film is an impressive achievement for everybody involved, and it is a solid example of how a team of filmmaking professionals can produce a piece of work that excels on every level.last_img read more