Here are a few more examples illustrating why the imitation of nature is one of the hottest trends in science.Make Like a SnakeSnakes typically crawl with a side-to-side wiggling motion. Can a snake crawl through a tunnel? “University of Cincinnati biologist Bruce Jayne studied the mechanics of snake movement to understand exactly how they can propel themselves forward like a train through a tunnel,” reports Science Daily. It was that curiosity that led to the headline, “Snake research could advance robotics to move through narrow tunnels after a disaster.” Curiosity – Observation of design – Imitation of design. That seemed to be Jayne’s reasoning process. What he found was a new superpower in nature that inspires imitation.Snakes are known for their iconic S-shaped movements. But they have a less noticeable skill that gives them a unique superpower.Snakes can crawl in a straight line.Straight-line or ‘rectilinear’ motion has been observed, but not studied in detail till now.When the snake inches forward, the skin on its belly flexes far more than the skin over its ribcage and back. The belly scales act like treads on a tire, providing traction with the ground as the muscles pull the snake’s internal skeleture forward in an undulating pattern that becomes fluid and seamless when they move quickly.The snake’s muscles are sequentially activated from the head toward the tail in a remarkably fluid and seamless way.Readers can ignore the superfluous Darwinese that asserts dogmatically, “Snakes evolved from burrowing ancestors.” What follows is Lamarckian, anyway. Jayne’s colleague Steven Newman claims that since straight-line movement is efficient for burrowing ancestors, it must have evolved. Funny that slithering in a straight line didn’t happen with gophers or badgers.What’s more important is the inspiration for future intelligent design research: “Newman said robots that can harness a snake’s rectilinear motion could have profound applications.” Jayne and Newman both seem more fascinated by the observations of “amazing contortions” these animals can make. They have 4 modes of locomotion: serpentine, concertina, sidewinding and rectilinear.“They move in so many fascinating ways. Is that because they have such an incredible diversity of motor patterns that the nervous system can generate?” he said.“Even though all snakes have the same body plan, there are fully aquatic snakes, snakes that move on flat surfaces, snakes that move in a horizontal plane, snakes that climb. They go everywhere,” he said. “And the reason they can go everywhere is they have so many different ways of controlling their muscles. That’s pretty intriguing.“Make Like a StingrayMore inspiration for robotics comes from an unlikely source: the stingray. Phys.org reports happenings in UCLA labs:UCLA bioengineering professor Ali Khademhosseini has led the development of a tissue-based soft robot that mimics the biomechanics of a stingray. The new technology could lead to advances in bio-inspired robotics, regenerative medicine and medical diagnostics.What caught the professor’s attention was the simple body design of these graceful swimmers. But the outward simplicity is deceptive; underneath are muscles, nerves, and all the other requirements for life. Khademhosseini ‘s soft robot is a very cheap imitation that cheats by borrowing some of the ray’s own cells:The 10-millimeter long robot is made up of four layers: tissue composed of live heart cells, two distinct types of specialized biomaterials for structural support, and flexible electrodes. Imitating nature, the robotic stingray is even able to “flap” its fins when the electrodes contract the heart cells on the biomaterial scaffold.Even so, he says, “The development of such bioinspired systems could enable future robotics that contain both biological tissues and electronic systems.”Make Like a BirdFixed-wing aircraft are crude compared to the flexible, dynamic wings of a bird. Korean engineers are playing catch-up, testing prototypes of aerial vehicles that can fly freely with independently-controlled wings. Before announcing their latest development, they first criticize today’s planes and helicopters in Science Daily‘s coverage:Aerial vehicles in a typical category have main wings fixed to the body (fuselage) in an integrated form. Shape of main wings, namely airfoil, produces lift force, thanks to aerodynamic interaction with air, and achieves commensurate energy efficiency. Yet, it is difficult for them to make agile movements due to the large turn radius. Banking the aerial vehicle that accounts for eventual turn comes from the adjustment of small ailerons mounted on the trailing edge of the wings.Aerial vehicles in another typical category gain thrust power by rotating multiple propellers. They can make agile movements by changing speed of motors rotating the propellers. For instance, pitch (movement up and down along vertical axis) down for moving forward with quadcopters is executed by increased speed of two rear rotors and unchanged or decreased speed of two front rotors. Rotor represents revolving part of motor. However, they are even less energy-efficient, owing to the absence of lift force created by wings.Could you get both benefits in one craft? Yes, by making like a bird. Although discussion of the new “Nsphere drone” with independently-controlled wings doesn’t mention birds, the connection is obvious. This new drone achieves new levels of “energy efficiency, swiftness and speed” beyond current aircraft designs (think falcons). You might see something like it delivering your future Amazon.com packages, they say. Not carrier pigeons?Make a MuscleNational Geographic reports on progress in making “artificial muscles” that act more like real muscles, and are becoming cheaper to manufacture. “Turning to nature, the University of Colorado Boulder scientists set out to engineer a lifelike muscle that was cheap, flexible, and strong.” Their product takes inspiration from the hummingbird, the elephant, and the octopus. While they want to make soft robots that are more lifelike, the test products have nowhere near the complexity of living muscle. They can just move under the intelligent direction of engineers.Give Biomimetics the Seal of ApprovalIn a final case, Phys.org reports that Korean scientists have used 3-D printing to imitate the whiskers of pinnipeds, a group of semi-aquatic mammals that includes seals and sea lions. As we shared 12/08/17, sea lions have “unique whiskers that help them catch even the fastest fish” (The Conversation). These whiskers—the longest of any animal—inspired the scientists to use them to make an underwater vortex sensor that uses “soft robotics” technology.“This paper is a wonderful example of bioinspired soft robotics. The authors have used observations of a natural system to build a materials-based sensor that can be used on underwater robots for better positional control, navigation, and object detection,” says Editor-in-Chief Barry A. Trimmer, PhD, who directs the Neuromechanics and Biomimetic Devices Laboratory at Tufts University (Medford, MA).The new sensor gathers analog data from the artificial whiskers, then digitizes it for a microcontroller.Support biomimetics. It’s improving the world in countless ways. Let’s rid the world once for all of scientifically useless Darwinian storytelling, with all its evil baggage. The science of the future is here by imitating nature’s superlative designs. (Visited 349 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0
31 August 2004South Africa added two more silvers to its medal tally as the Athens Olympics concluded, to finish with six medals in all, an improvement of one over Sydney in 2004.In the last three days of competition Hestrie Cloete and Mbulaeni Mulaudzi ended second in the high jump and 800 metres respectively. Given the two athletes’ form going into the competition, the first result was a minor disappointment, the second a major triumph.Cloete outclassed on the nightCloete came up against Yelena Slesarenko who, coming into the competition, was tied with her for the highest clearance in the world in 2004 of 2.04 metres.Paralympic Team SA rocks! – It was a case of saving the best for last as Zanele Situ, who successfully defended the javelin title she won in Sydney four years ago, was awarded the Whang Youn Dai Overcome prize at the close of the Athens 2004 Paralympic Games.The South African, though, entered the event with all the qualifications to make her the gold medal favourite. She was the IAAF’s female athlete of the year in 2003. She was also unbeaten in Golden League competitions in 2004.Both jumpers started out beautifully, clearing on their first six attempts, from 1.89 metres all the way through to 2.02 metres. Cloete then experienced her first failure at 2.04 metres. Slesarenko immediately put the pressure on with a comfortable clearance.Cloete lined up her next jump with determination etched on your face. She charged hard at the bar, but got her run-up wrong and had to duck under the bar, costing her a jump and leaving her with only one more attempt.The two-time world champion decided to move the bar up by two centimetres for her final jump to 2.06 metres, equal to her lifetime best. It was a brave decision, but it didn’t come off as Cloete again failed to clear.Ironically, when Slesarenko went over first time at 2.06 metres she did what Cloete had done when she won the World Championships in 2003 – first-time clearances all the way to 2.06 metres.Mulaudzi puts troubles behind himMbulaeni Mulaudzi’s silver in the 800 metres came as something of a surprise, despite the fact that for most of 2004 he was ranked number one in the world. He had struggled with illness and injury in the lead-up to the Athens Games, and as a result his form was not what it might have been.Nonetheless, he booked his place in the final with two decent runs in the heats and semi-finals. Hezekiel Sepeng, the silver medal winner in the fastest Olympic 800 metres final in history in Atlanta in 1996, also went through as the second of the fastest losers.In the final Mulaudzi put all his trials and tribulations behind him to move up one position from the third place he had achieved at the World Championships in Paris last year to capture silver.Russia’s Yuri Borzakovskiy snatched gold in 1:44.45, while Mulaudzi out-kicked world record holder Wilson Kipketer to finish second in 1:44.61 to the 1:44.65 of the great Dane. Sepeng finished sixth. Update 5 – So close for Van CollerUpdate 4 – SA’s first rowing Olympic medalUpdate 3 – Archer, beach volleyballers shineUpdate 2 – Schoeman bags another medalUpdate 1 – SA swimmers stun the world Relay disasterOther South African competitors were less successful. The men’s 4x400m relay failed to finish in the heats for the final after a botched baton change.Arnaud Malherbe, a member of the quartet, reckoned fellow team member Hendrick Mokganyetsi said the baton was knocked out of his hand by a Russian athlete at the first handover. Mokganyetsi ran back to pick the baton up, but then decided not to continue as the rest of the teams had already roared on by.Bright future for Sandler16-year old Stephanie Sandler failed to qualify for the all-round competition of the rhythmic gymnastics competition. However, her showing of twenty-second overall was more than decent, especially considering her young age. Sandler still has plenty of time to improve, develop, and learn, and better things can be expected of her in the future.Hockey: three greats retireSouth Africa’s women’s hockey team ended their tournament on a high, edging out Spain 4-3 in extra time to finish in ninth place. The final placing was a disappointment because the side failed to play to its potential in some games. That was emphasised when Germany won gold against the Netherlands; earlier in the competition South Africa had outclassed the Germans 3-0.The South African men’s team finished tenth after another tough loss, as had been the case throughout much of the tournament. Facing Great Britain, Craig Jackson and company went one goal down in the forty-third minute, but just two minutes later Greg Nicol leveled the scores at one-all.Neither team was able to break the impasse. With that, the match ultimately moved into penalty strokes and Great Britain emerged 4-3 winners from the spot.The match also brought to an end the careers of three of South Africa’s greatest hockey players ever. Gregg Clark retired as the country’s most capped player of all time, having reached the 250-Test mark in Athens.Captain, Craig Jackson, who reached 200 caps at the Olympics, also called it a day, while Greg Nicol, too, decided to call it quits after an extraordinary career. In 200 matches he scored almost 250 goals, a record good enough to qualify him as one of the all-time greats.Fighters: another dayDuncan Mahlangu failed to move beyond the preliminary round of the 68-kilogram category in the Taekwondo competition, going down to Gabriel Sagustume of Guatemala. He could have had another opportunity to move on had Sagastume won his next bout, but when he lost Mahlangu’s Olympic competition was over.Wrestler Shaun Williams was eliminated when he suffered defeats to the other two men in his 55-kilogram elimination pool. Bulgaria’s Velikov Radoslav easily beat the South African 13-2, but it was tight against China’s Zhengyu Li, who claimed a 5-4 victory. Interestingly, Li went on to defeat Radoslav.Finally, the marathonThe final event of the Olympics, as is traditional, was the marathon, run over a hilly course. Early on South Africa’s trio of Hendrick Ramaala, Ian Syster, and Gert Thys looked strong, running up at the front of the race and setting the pace.However, that strong running signaled only a false dawn as both Syster and Ramaala fell out, with Thys going on to finish in sixteenth place.SA’s Olympic medal winnersGoldMen’s 4x100m freestyle relay team (Roland Schoeman, Lyndon Ferns, Darian Townsend, Ryk Neethling) in a world record 3:13.17SilverHestrie Cloete – women’s high jump, 2.02 metresMbulaeni Mulaudzi – men’s 800 metres, 1:44.61Roland Schoeman – men’s 100 metres freestyle, 48.23BronzeDonovan Cech / Ramon Di Clemente – men’s rowing pairs, 6:33.40Roland Schoeman – men’s 50m freestyle, 22.02 Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo material
8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting See also:Online Retail Thriving: 8% Growth Expected This Holiday SeasonTop Internet Trends of 2000-2009: E-commerce Related Posts Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Tags:#e-commerce#Trends#web Last night we wrote about Forrester’s prediction that online holiday retail sales will grow 8% this year to $44.7 billion. comScore had similar numbers about the growth of online retail – toy web sites grew 9% in October, as did the retail apparel segment. Online personal finance service Mint.com has joined the festive statistics parade, with data analyzing some of the U.S.’s leading retailers. Mint analyzed spending data and compared it to one year ago. The data is for top performers in the third quarter this year, based on “average monthly spend per user versus recession lows.”Interestingly, Mint’s data says that Q4 sales will not be as good as last year – which is the opposite of what Forrester predicts. However Mint does say that consumer electronics and clothing are set to rise in Q4.Check out the charts below and compare them to Forrester and comScore’s data.The highlights, via Mint.com:Aeropostale – the clothing retailer is up 10% year-over-year, having grown consistently quarter over quarter.Best Buy – the electronics retailer is up 1% Q3 year-over-year, hit a recession low of -7%.Fry’s – while competitor Best Buy’s sales exceed where they were at this point last year, Fry’s remains down -7% year-over-year (though it’s up from a -16% recession low).J.Crew – the clothing retailer’s lowest point was -3%, but it has since entirely corrected and even improved sales 4% year-over-year.Sears – the department store’s sales are up 8% over this time last year, having dipped to -10%.Target – after an initial drop to -8% in Q109, Target has halved that loss and is currently down only -4% year-over-year. richard macmanus
Tags:#news#web The e-book hype reached its apex just before the holiday season. Now seems like a good time to take a closer look at the e-book market, especially given that this business is heading for another disruption once Apple’s iPad launches. According to the latest stats from the Book Industry Study Group (BISG), e-book usage is growing fast, but continues to represent a very small part of the publishing industry’s bottom line. Currently, only about 2% of American book buyers over 13 are active e-book users.E-Books Today: PCs, Kindles & iPhonesWhile 2% is still a very small number, the BISG (which represents numerous large publishing houses) found that e-book usage increased about 25% over the holiday season. Most people still read e-books on their PCs (47%), followed by the Kindle (32%) and the iPhone and iPod Touch (21%). As Michael Mace notes, it’s important to remember that this doesn’t take into account how many e-books these users actually bought. Chances are that Kindle users buy a lot more e-books than those who read e-books on their PCs.According to the BISG, a slight majority of e-book buyers is men (51% compared to 42% for paper books) and, unsurprisingly, these buyers have a higher than average income.How Many Kindles has Amazon Sold?Amazon, sadly, doesn’t give us any hard data about how many Kindles and e-books it has actually sold so far, which makes it rather hard to pinpoint any exact numbers for e-book usage. Based on the BISG’s data, Mace extrapolates that there are currently about 200 million active book buyers in the U.S. – which would mean that Amazon has sold roughly 1.3 million Kindles. What About the iPad?While a lot of (digital) ink has been spilled about Apple’s (and the publishing industry’s) pricing structure for e-books on the iPad, the far more interesting question is how publishers will use the iPad (and similar devices) to adapt their content for this new environment. While traditional e-book readers like the Kindle are great at recreating a book-like reading experience, the iPad, with its color screen and fast processor will be able to do a lot more – and readers will expect iPad e-books to be more interactive because of this. Earlier today, Penguin showed off some of the e-books it plans for the iPad (including DK’s guide to the human body and various travel guides). We can only hope that more publishers will follow Penguin’s lead. We already know that a lot of magazine publishers are planning to launch their own native iPad apps.It’s interesting to see that Apple’s iPhone and iPod touch are already the Kindle’s closest competitors. As Mace notes, iPhone users are probably less active e-book buyers than Kindle users, but Apple has clearly managed to capture a lot of the e-book mindshare thanks to the third-party e-book apps that are currently available for the iPhone and iPod touch.mindshare thanks to the third-party e-book apps that are currently available for the iPhone and iPod touch. Related Posts Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting frederic lardinois Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market
The Rajasthan government on Monday told the Supreme Court that it has written to online search engine Google to take down hate videos uploaded by a man accused of hacking and burning alive a Muslim labourer in the State in December 2017. In the videos, Shambhu Lal Raigar was purportedly seen ranting that he killed Afrazul Khan, a labourer from West Bengal, to stop interfaith marriages. The killing was recorded on camera by Raigar’s minor nephew in Rajasthan’s Rajsamand district.The State government told the apex court that these videos were hosted by multiple websites and it would take some time to remove them.A Bench of Justices A.M. Khanwilkar and Ajay Rastogi asked the government to file an affidavit about the steps taken by it to remove the videos, including those uploaded by Raigar from inside Jodhpur jail, and adjourned the matter for further hearing. Senior advocate Indira Jaising, appearing for Khan’s wife Gulbahar Bibi, said the State government may have taken action with regard to the video uploaded by Raigar before his arrest, but no action has been taken about the video uploaded from inside the prison.
Stung by two successive reversals, Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) will look bounce back and stay in contention for a play-off berth when they take on lowly Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in an Indian Premier League (IPL) encounter in Bengaluru on Sunday.KKR, who suffered losses against Sunrisers Hyderabad and Rising Pune Supergiant in their previous two matches, need two wins out of the remaining three matches to seal their berth in the knockout stage.Placed second in the IPL standings with 14 points from 11 matches, the two-time IPL winners are followed by Rising Pune Supergiant and Sunrisers Hyderabad at 14 and 13 points.The manner in which RCB lost to KKR at the Eden Gardens should give them a lot of confidence going into this tie.KKR had handed out a 82-run defeat to RCB after bundling them out for 49 – the lowest score in IPL history.In the next two matches, KKR would be facing Kings XI Punjab, who registered a 19-run victory against RCB on Friday, and already qualified Mumbai Indians who have 16 points from 10 outings.Gautam Gambhir’s side lost by four wickets against Pune and the defeat could be a reality check for the Kolkata side as their top order collapsed in the last match, while Colin de Grandhomme’s 36 and Manish Pandey’s 37 saved the blushes.Rahul Tripathi then single-handedly won it for Pune with a belligerent 52-ball 93.KKR are eagerly awaiting the services of Chris Lynn who has practised recently and is expected to be back by May 9. The hamstring injury to in-form top order bat Robin Uthappa is a cause of worry too. The Karnataka dasher missed out the last game and it is unclear whether he will take a part in Sunday’s game as well.advertisementSunil Narine’s opening experiment is slowly starting to fall off and if Gambhir and Manish Pandey has a bad day, it could well be down to Yusuf Pathan, who is in poor form.RCB, on the other hand, have been the biggest disappointment of this year’s IPL. Virat Kohli’s rock-bottom team has been bowled out four times this season and has just five points to show for from 12 matches.Unlike the previous seasons, RCB’s batting has been the biggest disappointment with the likes of Chris Gayle, AB de Villiers and Kohli himself not stepping up.RCB’s two leg-spinners spinners – Samuel Badree (9 wickets) and Yuzvendra Chahal (13 wickets) have been the only ones who stood up and KKR would be way of that threat.
Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Alando Terrelonge, is encouraging Jamaicans to be more open minded when it comes to learning Spanish as a second language. Story Highlights “Our children are ready, our children want to learn Spanish (and) they are so excited. Our children are naturally curious. They are bright and they want it,” the State Minister told JIS News in an interview. Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Alando Terrelonge, is encouraging Jamaicans to be more open minded when it comes to learning Spanish as a second language.“Our children are ready, our children want to learn Spanish (and) they are so excited. Our children are naturally curious. They are bright and they want it,” the State Minister told JIS News in an interview.He was responding to a comment by Charge d’Affaires at the Embassy of Spain, Victoria Garcia, that more emphasis should be placed on Spanish as a second language, to increase the marketability of Jamaican students.Ms. Garcia was addressing students during the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information Region Four’s biennial Day of Excellence (Dia de Excelencia) Primary School Spanish Competition, which was held at the St. John’s Methodist Church Action Centre in St. James, on May 16.Mr. Terrelonge said that parents should not underestimate their children’s ability to learn the language, as they are willing and able to learn Spanish.“I recognise the importance of patois as a dialect and I recognise the importance of English. We are an English speaking country and a patois speaking country as well, but we have to think beyond that. We have to start thinking that we are going to empower more of our young persons by letting them learn a foreign language,” the State Minister said.Mr. Terrelonge emphasised that it is imperative for persons to learn the language, as it is the most common in the region.“With Spanish, we will empower our young persons and we will increase their marketability within the region. English is not the most common language in the region, it is Spanish,” the State Minister informed.“There are over 500 million persons who speak Spanish in the region, so you can imagine the opportunities for trade, scholarships and work,” he added.Mr. Terrelonge said the Ministry has been in discussions with officials from Spain and Cuba and that the Government is working on a policy to address the Spanish curriculum.“We have also had interactions, with the help of the Spanish government, with the Cervantes Institute in Spain and they have brought persons down who have done training programmes with our teachers as well,” he noted.The State Minister said the Government is also seeking to get more educators from Cuba through the ongoing cooperation agreement, under which teachers from Cuba have been assisting the Ministry.“Our Cuban neighbours are very committed. We have an ongoing programme where we get a lot of teachers from Cuba and we want to strengthen those relations to ensure that we get even more teachers, and also more teachers from Spain as well. We are also thinking of establishing greater relations with our partners in Mexico and Colombia, to ensure that we get the best of the region and get more teachers here,” Mr. Terrelonge noted.The State Minister pointed out that the Government aims to have more Spanish teachers in primary schools by September 2020.Up to August last year, 369 Cuban teachers had been recruited under the agreement, which was signed in 1997. He was responding to a comment by Charge d’Affaires at the Embassy of Spain, Victoria Garcia, that more emphasis should be placed on Spanish as a second language, to increase the marketability of Jamaican students.
From a young age, outside voices such as school dress codes and harsh comments from peer groups influence how girls feel about their appearance.Shonda Rhimes participated in a panel with powerful young womenWhile girls today are strong and resilient, these comments still have a negative impact on her self-esteem and make her less likely to participate in things like trying out for sports or raising her hand in class. It’s time for her to hear something different. Dove and Shonda Rhimes have teamed up to launch the Girl Collective, a multigenerational sisterhood created to build confidence and challenge beauty stereotypes through honest, authentic and practical conversations shared between women and girls. The Girl Collective is powered by the Dove Self Esteem Project which has been hosting self-esteem workshops in schools and providing at-home self-esteem materials and exercises since 2004. Now, with the Girl Collective, these self-esteem experiences from Dove can continue to spread and support girls and women everywhere.Inaugural members of the group include Shonda Rhimes, Musician SZA, Transgender Activist Jazz Jennings, intimate apparel brand Aerie, Viral Dance Group Syncopated Ladies, and many more powerful and inspiring voices.“Six in 10 girls believe that to do well in life they have to look a certain way and that just shouldn’t be,” says Shonda Rhimes who has been working with Dove for two years as Chief Storyteller in an effort to ensure every woman and girl sees herself represented in media and culture. “Last year I participated in my first-ever Dove Self-Esteem Workshop and I was inspired by the power of women and girls connecting to tackle issues that impact so many of us. I’m proud to be a part of this remarkable community which illustrates the magic we can unlock when we work together to inspire change and build confidence.”Dove marked the launch of Girl Collective with an electrifying super-event in Los Angeles on Saturday, October 6 – the largest convening of its kind in the brand’s history. Hundreds of women and girls attended a series of powerful social conversations inspiring everyone to take action to raise self-esteem, all powered by Dove Self-Esteem Project accredited curriculum. More Like Me: Chief Storyteller Shonda Rhimes participated in a stimulating panel with powerful young women about expanding representation. Shonda urged women and girls to remember they are the main character of their own story, encouraging them to claim their power and begin defining beauty for themselves. Skin Deep: Musician SZA and Dove Self-Esteem Educator Dre Brown explored the relationship our culture and ethnicity play in defining our beauty identities. SZA encouraged girls to create their own beauty standards rather than subscribe to someone else’s. Girl Redefined: Transgender Activist Jazz Jennings joined Sexuality & Relationship expert Dr. Logan Levkoff to challenge ideas of gender, beauty and femininity to create new appreciation for and acceptance of beauty that is fluid. Through examples of her own journey, Jazz’s helped the collective understand that they have the power to create their own reality. From “the Gram” to the Ground: With a shared mission of helping girls develop a positive relationship with the way they look, Aerie teamed up with Dove to join Girl Collective along with #AerieReal ambassador and former Fashion Editor Lauren Chan and provide actionable ways girls can be body positive champions in their schools and communities.Check out more inspiring highlights, including the full panel discussion, from the Dove Girl Collective event here.
The MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference stages a research paper competition each year, and those papers usually contain results and ideas that are far more interesting than anything uttered on stage during the conference’s panels. Here are five trends that emerged in this year’s eight finalists:It’s all about big data sets: Camera-tracked data isn’t new to the pro sports scene; PITCHf/x data has been around for a decade. But only recently have we started to see it, along with other relatively large data sets, take over the research competition at Sloan. Four of the eight paper finalists used camera-tracked data, two more used sizable play-by-play databases, and another used a massive collection of geotagged in-game mobile-device requests from MLB stadiums. Simply put, research that doesn’t have to grapple with the demands of bigger data sets is becoming less common among Sloan paper finalists.The rise of machine learning: With the increased prominence of such large data sets, it was inevitable that state-of-the-art machine-learning techniques would begin to make their mark at Sloan. For instance, one of this year’s most interesting finalists used a “random forest” framework to predict the outcome of a tennis point after any shot based on the speed, trajectory and location of the ball, the context of the shot and priors for a player’s style derived from cluster analysis. (What this means to you is that if it works, the algorithm will be able to ferret out not only the most crucial points in a match, but also the most crucial shots.) Another paper used supervised learning to develop custom player-by-player strategies for pick-and-roll defense in the NBA — a clever way to translate statistical knowledge about a player into actionable tactics. In many ways, an amount of data so staggering can only be coherently processed using these kinds of advanced statistical techniques, so I wouldn’t be surprised if we see them used more in future research.A focus on classifying player types: As part of its model, that tennis paper developed what it called “style priors” for each player based on the types of shots he tends to play. Another paper, about complementary players in basketball, estimated the effect of an individual player’s skill set on the behavior of his teammates. The emphasis on underlying tendencies and similar player types to provide context and inform prediction isn’t unprecedented — PECOTA was doing a version of that 13 years ago — but it is now being used with far more granular data, to improve prediction in a wider variety of sports (particularly dynamic ones such as tennis and basketball).The Hot Hand, Part 1,000,000: Few topics have generated more research in psychology and statistics than the hot-hand fallacy. It has surfaced again with a Sloan paper finalist. The seminal work on the subject declared the hot hand nothing more than a trick of the mind, but there’s been a recent trend toward debunking the hot-hand debunkers. Here, that trend continues — using baseball data, the authors find that recent changes in player performance can be predictive and that opposing teams mostly react to them in an appropriate manner. But I’m guessing this won’t be the final word in the hot-hand wars.Fewer finalists from the “Big Four” and more from the business of sport: Compared to Sloan conferences past, this year’s crop of finalists featured easily the fewest papers focused on the North American “Big Four” sports of baseball, basketball, football and hockey. Football1010 NO. OF FINALIST PAPERS Hockey1010 Tennis0001 Business0012 Gambling0010 Using the Internet Archive, I tracked the breakdown of finalists by sport going back to 2013; that year, seven of the eight finalists researched a Big Four sport. This year, the number is down to four. Also of note is the emergence of finalists concerned with the business of running a sports franchise. Zero finalists focused on the subject in 2013 and 2014, but that changed last year with the inclusion of a paper about dynamic ticket pricing. Now we’re up to two finalists focused on topics like brand engagement and sponsorship revenue. Soccer1111 TOPIC2013201420152016 Baseball1312 Basketball4422
Samsung is bringing more Microsoft software onto its phones. Angela Lang/CNET Samsung is bolstering its partnership with Microsoft through a new series of apps and features such as OneDrive storage for photos and better syncing between the phone and computer. The new features, designed for the Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10 Plus, will also help Samsung to better take on the iPhone. Samsung and Microsoft said they’ve worked together to offer features that make the Galaxy Note 10 phones work more easily with PCs. The phones will include Microsoft’s Your Phone app by default, allowing text messages to sync between a phone and a Windows-powered PC. People will be able to make and receive calls on the PC later this year too, Samsung said. Samsung’s phones can also use Microsoft’s OneDrive service to store photos. And Microsoft’s popular Outlook email program, as well as its Office productivity suite of Word, Excel and PowerPoint, will be included with each Galaxy Note 10. Share your voice • See All Aug 31 • iPhone 11, Apple Watch 5 and more: The final rumors Apple Comments Tags In the “anything you can do, I can do better” battle between Apple and Samsung, the iPhone maker has always had an upper hand with its software. Its handoff technology lets you start an email on an iPad and finish it on the Mac. Apple’s iWork productivity suite, including its Pages word processor, Numbers spreadsheet app and Keynote presentation software, is free to every Mac and iPhone user. And its iCloud Photo Library service is considered the best competitor to Google Photos. With Microsoft, Samsung can begin to bridge that gap. “The ability to take that magic between an iPhone and Mac and bring that to Samsung is big,” said Creative Strategies analyst Carolina Milanesi. The tie-up makes even more sense when you consider that most people tend to use whatever comes with their phone, she said. So using Outlook email by default will give Microsoft a boost. “Microsoft has always struggled to do well in mobile, and to have a strong mobile partner,” said Anshel Sag, an analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy. Microsoft may also benefit from offering access to Microsoft services in a way that’s not just through an app, but rather directly integrated into the phone. “It makes the Note a real productivity device,” Sag said. Microsoft will even begin selling Samsung’s Galaxy Note 10 in its store. CNET’s Shara Tibken contributed to this report. reading • Samsung’s partnership with Microsoft helps them both take on Apple Satya Nadella Microsoft Samsung Apple New Galaxy S10 phones bring it Galaxy Fold is the most exciting phone we’ve seen in years Every camera lens and curve on the new Galaxy S10 phones What’s the difference in all the S10 models? Galaxy Buds with wireless charging arrive March 8 for $130 More from Samsung Samsung revamps its partnership with Microsoft 3:33 Now playing: Watch this: “From calls and text messages to emails and photos, we’re making these everyday experiences great and the interactions between all the devices seamless,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said while on stage at Samsung’s Unpacked launch event in New York on Wednesday. This partnership, which expands on Microsoft’s previous work with Samsung, isn’t just a marriage of convenience, Nadella said. “The combination of Microsoft intelligent experiences and Samsung’s powerful, innovative new devices, like the Galaxy Note 10 and Galaxy Book S, make this possible.” It’s also increasingly necessary. Aug 31 • Your phone screen is gross. Here’s how to clean it Mobile Tech Industry Aug 31 • Verizon vs AT&T vs T-Mobile vs Sprint: Choose the best 5G carrier Samsung Event Aug 31 • Apple iPhone 11 launches Sept. 10, Disney Plus in big demand 5