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Mammals Worth Looking Up to (or Down at)

first_img(Visited 20 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 Furry friends around the world get respect from researchers who look at them carefully.Giraffes:  How do the world’s tallest mammals stand up safely on those long, skinny legs?  Researchers at the Royal Veterinary College wanted to know.  Science Daily notes that giraffe limb bones are under a lot of stress from the weight of these giants.  The secret is really groovy!  “Researchers from the Royal Veterinary College (RVC) of London found that a supportive ligament is protected by a groove in the animals’ lower leg bones,” the BBC News reports.  “This groove is much deeper in giraffes than in other animals, and the researchers say this helps the spindly-legged giants support their bodyweight.”  By measuring the predicted force on the limbs of giraffes that had died for unrelated reasons, the researchers found that the animals’ limbs are overdesigned: “the limbs remained upright and stable without any additional support and could even withstand greater loads.”Kangaroos:  Trivia question: what mammal walks on five legs?  The kangaroo, according to Nature.  “When kangaroos move slowly, their muscular tails work as a fifth leg.”  Even though kangaroos do not hail from Canada, a Canadian researcher found that “Per kilogram of body mass, the animal’s tail provided as much useful work as a single leg for a walking human.”Apes:  Do chimpanzees have a gesture language?  The BBC News claims that they can use 66 gestures to communicate 19 meanings.  Their voices, however, don’t seem to have anything to do with the gestured messages.Monkeys:  The diversity of facial decorations in guenon monkeys from Central and West Africa is remarkable, as this photo gallery in the BBC News illustrates.  The explanation given is that this diversity evolved in order to prevent interbreeding.  There are more than 25 species of guenons; their faces help keep the species distinct.Pandas:  A panda (but hopefully not its poacher) eats shoots and leaves.  They’re related to meat-eating bears, but pandas live on a diet of bamboo for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  How do they do it?  Science Magazine explains what researchers found by observing them in the wild.  The pandas roam different elevations to catch the nutritious early shoots for some seasons, and the mature limbs at other times.  They get enough nutritional variety this way to sustain them.  It works well, as a viral video shows how much fun they have.Rats!  Whiskers on a rat perform the same functions as fingers on a human hand, according to research at the University of Sheffield reported on Science Daily.  They’re called whiskers for a reason: the little mammals whisk them back and forth to gain tactile information on obstacles and their textures, much like a human in the dark might walk with hands outstretched.  Whisker sensation is not new to scientists, of course, but “until now they did not know to what extent animals were able to deliberately control their whisker movement.”Surprising mammal fossils:  A midget fossil tapir and hedgehog have been found in British Columbia, Science Daily reports.  It shows that the range of these creatures was once far more vast than it is today.  Live Science calls them “pocket pets.”  Both were a surprise to researchers, who found them by accident and didn’t expect to see tropical and forest mammals living side by side.Evolutionarily SpeakingHow do evolutionists explain the mammals reported above?Speaking of giraffes again, Live Science quoted lead researcher Christ Basu, who said, “I’d like to link modern giraffes with fossil specimens, to illustrate the process of evolution.”  Unfortunately, Basu didn’t point to any known fossil transitional forms that would fulfill his wish.The fossil discovery in Canada was called an “evolutionary experiment,” without acknowledgement that experiments are normally conducted by intelligent design.  As for how these complex, well-adapted mammals appeared there in small stature, they didn’t say.As for ape language, “the gulf remains,” one primatologist said.  While thinking the research was “commendable in seeking to fill the gaps in our knowledge of the evolution of human language,” Dr. Susan Schultz of the University of Manchester found the results “a little disappointing” in her opinion.  “The vagueness of the gesture meanings suggest either that the chimps have little to communicate, or we are still missing a lot of the information contained in their gestures and actions,” she said. “Moreover, the meanings seem to not go beyond what other less sophisticated animals convey with non-verbal communication.”  Perhaps she was thinking of crows.As for the guenon monkeys, one researcher trumpeted, “This is perhaps the strongest evidence to date for a role for visual signals in the key evolutionary processes by which species are formed and maintained, and it is particularly exciting that we have found it in part of our own lineage.” (BBC)  It’s not clear, though, why the monkeys would prefer not to hybridize or interbreed, if they all began as members of the same evolutionary branch.  The researchers assumed that geographic isolation led to the differences, but that’s a controversial hypothesis in the face of mounting evidence for sympatric speciation (speciation within the same geographic population).  Either explanation begs the question of speciation.Observers may wonder what to think about Robert Dudley’s hypothesis that drunken monkeys gave humans a thirst for booze (PhysOrg).  That’s what his new book, The Drunken Monkey, Why We Drink and Abuse Alcohol, tries to argue:So, I hypothesize that social facilitation of communication and food sharing and all these bright warm fuzzy feelings we get when we have a drink have basically evolved to facilitate rapid identification of fruit at a distance – you smell a plume, go upwind, and you get to the fruit. Fruit flies do it, we just don’t know if primates do or not.  But they might.  And once you get the fruit, you consume as much as possible before others do, or you share it with your close relatives, which is a well-documented behavior.  The positive psychoactive effects of alcohol may simply exist to enhance the efficacy of these behaviors and, ultimately, they are the targets of natural selection.It’s not exactly clear why a drunken monkey would bear more offspring, or how drunkenness would be coded in genes that would make some humans (but not all) want to get drunk today, ostensibly tens of millions of years later.  Note: Dudley grew up in a family with an alcoholic father.Even the strictest Biblical creationists like Ken Ham believe that quite a bit of diversification of mammals has occurred since the Flood just a few thousand years ago.  Answers in Genesis’s Creation Museum in Kentucky argues that the original created kinds did not look like any of the animals we see today.  After the Flood, animals dispersed and diversified to a remarkable degree according to programmed variability God built into each kind.  The difference between that and Darwinism is that programmed variability is not a blind, purposeless, unguided process.  It’s like pre-adapted software that could deal with a variety of new situations.  We should not be surprised, therefore, that guenon monkeys exhibit such diversity today.  On Noah’s ark, according to the Biblical interpretation, just one pair of each kind would need to be taken aboard.  The built-in programmed variability would serve the descendents well as they spread out over a drastically re-formatted world.  This is not mutation and natural selection; it’s a form of intelligent design that illustrates God’s forethought and planning for robustness against environmental perturbations like the Flood.The evolutionary interpretations stated above, by contrast, rely on storytelling about what blind, unguided processes “might” do.  In science, actual evidence is preferred to speculation.  If critics of Genesis become picayunish about “species” verses “kind” we remind them that the word species means kind in Latin.  It was used by Linnaeus, whose goal was to delineate the original created kinds.  Today, creationists do not believe that species correspond to the created kinds, but that’s just a matter of categorization; some kinds are species (e.g., Homo sapiens), some kinds are probably genera or families.last_img read more

Finance, construction drive services

first_img17 November 2008The finance and construction industries have been identified as the most significant contributors to growth in South Africa’s services sector.Deputy Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies said last Wednesday that South Africa’s services sector – which includes telecommunications, transportation, finance, insurance, distribution, information services and entertainment services – contributes around 74% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) and 72% of employment.“Service sectors such as finance and construction have been particularly significant contributors to growth during the upswing which we experienced between 2001 and 2007,” he told delegates at the Service Exporter Network Annual Meeting and Conference in Johannesburg.He highlighted the importance of sectors such as the services sector to the growth of South Africa’s economy.Services and tradeServices and trade within the services sector is becoming increasing important to both developed and developing countries, Davies said.The services sectors currently account for two-thirds of global output, one-third of global employment and nearly 20% of global trade, he said.Between 2000 and 2007, global services sectors grew at an annual rate of 10.1%, which was one percent more than the growth in trading goods.Asgi-SAThe Accelerated and Shared Growth Initiative of South Africa (AsgiSA) identified two important services sectors, namely business process outsourcing and tourism.“Beyond that, and beyond the sectors already mentioned, service sectors like mining, engineering, medical services and a huge range of business services and transport and communication services have a huge potential in terms of their contribution to GDP and employment.“It is for this reason that we have begun work on a comprehensive National Service Sector framework strategy document, which is now in its first draft,” Davies said.Trade in servicesDeveloping countries such as South Africa had historically adopted a relatively defensive stance towards negotiations on trade in services, whether at multilateral or bi-lateral levels.This, he explained, was probably due to the fact that developing countries perceived the services sector to be less advanced and less developed than those in the developed world.Retaining policy spaceDeveloping countries had also argued the need to retain policy space, both to allow for the fostering and development of local service sectors and, critically, to allow for domestic regulation of the sector.“We as South Africa need to take note of and be proud of the fact that our domestic financial sector has thus far been relatively unscathed by the global credit crunch and financial sector meltdown.“This has to a large extent been due to the quality of our domestic regulation, and it is noteworthy that measures like our National Credit Act are now the subject of considerable international interest,” Davies said.He added that it was necessary for developing countries to advance their interest in trade in services and identify areas where they could make headway by cross-border exports of trade, in particular.Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

Money Management Tips for Freelancers and People With Irregular Income

first_imgThe average person may see anywhere between 4,000 and 10,000 ads in a single day. From binge-watching your favorite shows to checking the pile of coupons in your mailbox, advertisers have inundated our lives. Most of the ads we see… Full Story,Dressing up for Halloween is one of the best parts of the holiday, especially if you’re a creative person. But buying a Halloween costume can get expensive, with many costing more than $50 a pop. And unless you plan to… Full Story,You may not find it on an official calendar anywhere, but Friendsgiving is a newer holiday that has gained popularity in recent years. Much like Thanksgiving, Friendsgiving is a time to gather around the table with loved ones in the… Full Story,My birthday is on Halloween, so every year I get super excited. I plan what my costume will be, decide how I want to celebrate and text all my friends to let them know. Last year, I was finally able… Full Story,Not much of a football fan? Don’t know what all the cheesehead hat-wearing and face paint-smearing is all about? Skip hanging out at the local sports bar or sitting in the stands at a game, and put on your entrepreneurial… Full Story,Living paycheck to paycheck can feel like an endless scramble. Rent is due on the first but your paycheck won’t clear until the second. On top of everything, you need to pay for groceries, a bus ticket, and utilities before… Full Story,Decision fatigue is the decline in energy and focus you experience after making too many decisions. This mental drain causes your brain to abandon your willpower in order to seek more immediate rewards, which leads to poor decision making and… Full Story,If you ask a random person on the street what they do, chances are they have a lot of slashes and hyphens in their job titles. In this day and age, if you don’t have multiple sources of income… Full Story,Do you consider yourself a financially responsible young adult? Personally, I like to think that my finances are mostly in order. Rent, student loans, car payments—everything big is blocked off nicely. If the math works out right, I have a… Full Story,In the financial world, nothing evokes feelings of terror quite like the word “bankruptcy”. It’s become synonymous with a complete and utter collapse of one’s finances – a black hole that’s almost impossible to climb out of. When you declare… Full Storylast_img read more

5 Ways to Spend Less on Healthcare

first_imgHas an organization or university offered you an opportunity with a stipend? Whether it’s an internship or apprenticeship, a stipend is a set amount of money that helps offset living expenses. This fixed amount is financial support provided while you’re… Full Story,Truth is, there is a lot to be excited about when it comes to college: new friends, a new routine, (college parties!), and more independence. But along with all these perks, it’s also time to start thinking about your finances…. Full Story,A routing number is a unique number that identifies a specific banking institution. Each routing number is made up of nine digits. Routing numbers are sometimes referred to as an American Banker’s Association routing transit number or an ABA RTN…. Full Story,It’s stressful enough having a car loan over your head and staying on top of your monthly payments. But what if you have an upside-down car loan — in other words, the amount you owe on your set of wheels… Full Story,When you’re trying to get your financial house in order, it’s easy to get lost in the specifics. You might stress about how to adjust your budget, where to find some extra cash for the holidays or what funds to… Full Story,Shortly after graduating from New York University with a Master’s degree, Melanie Lockert turned to food stamps, as she worked her way out of $81,000 in student loans. “There were a lot of emotions around carrying that debt. It caused… Full Story,Traveling is one of the best things in life, and luckily, low funds don’t have to dash your dreams of enjoying an epic adventure. A wealth of destinations—both in the U.S. and abroad—are so affordable that even hardcore penny pinchers… Full Story,While we don’t yet have flying cars that collapse to the size of a suitcase, pneumatic tubes that transport us from room to room or machines that automatically bathe and clothe us in the morning, every day we’re getting closer… Full Story,Times have changed since Grams and Gramps were your age, looking to settle down and buy their first home. But today the house with the white picket fence—or that trendy loft in downtown—isn’t completely out of the question if you… Full Story,We recently hosted a Twitter chat as part of our #RealTalkSeries. And let’s just say, things definitely got real. Many of you joined us to discuss “taboo” and cringe-worthy money questions such as how to improve a bad credit score,… Full Storylast_img read more

New drug kills flu virus in one day, gets fast-tracked to approval

first_imgTamiflu (generic: oseltamivir), the go-to drug for combatting influenza has a new challenger. Japanese drugmaker Shionogi has announced that test results are in: its drug kills the flu virus in 24 hours. With one pill. The drug, named Xofluza (generic: baloxavir marboxyl), was recently granted accelerated approval by the Japanese government after trials of the drug showed great promise. In a year that’s seen an epidemic—even pandemic—of flu cases, some resulting in unexpected deaths of people not in high-risk groups, the influenza outbreak in the United States this year has reached levels not seen since the swine flu epidemic of 2009. Though it likely won’t be for sale until May 2018 in Japan and not in the United States until 2019 or very late 2018, it could be a sign of better news to come. How does it work?The key is that by inhibiting the enzyme that the flu virus needs in order to replicate, it kills the virus within a human in 24 hours. The symptoms continue for about the same amount of time as when Tamiflu is used, however, but they’re lessened and begin to go away faster. And both drugs lessen the effects of the flu versus no drug at all. Tamiflu-maker Roche was involved in the study and development so it will be the company marketing this, in addition to Tamiflu—at least in the United States.Given that the flu vaccine this season was only 36% effective, this is especially welcome news. Sourcelast_img read more

5 Reasons Rick Perry Should Champion a Clean Energy Revolution

first_imgA version of this article was originally posted on TheHill.comThis post is part of WRI’s blog series, The Trump Administration. The series analyzes policies and actions by the administration and their implications for climate change, energy, economics and more.With the selection of Rick Perry to lead the Department of Energy (DOE), President Trump continued an unmistakable pattern of picking individuals with close ties to the fossil fuel industry. But Governor Perry, who is expected to be confirmed in the coming weeks, has also demonstrated a wider view on energy, including strong support for wind power.If the Trump administration wants to create jobs, protect people’s health and support American competitiveness, it would do well to embrace Americans’ most popular energy choices — renewable energy use and energy efficiency.The new cabinet has work to do to overcome President Trump’s skepticism when it comes to clean energy. President Trump apparently doesn’t fully grasp the scope of clean energy manufacturing and employment in the United States.In recent years, clean energy has been surging globally, with more than $285 billion in total global investments in 2015, one of its best years ever. In the United States, investment in renewables jumped by 19 percent in 2015 alone.The United States can either move to the head of the pack or risk falling behind.Gov. Perry should recognize the benefits of expanding investment in renewables. During his time as governor of Texas, wind power expanded from 115 megawatts in 2000 to nearly 18,000 megawatts in 2015. Today, Texas is the nation’s top state for wind power, which employs around 25,000 people in the state.Here are some compelling reasons why the president and his new cabinet should consider clean energy:1. Renewable energy is already providing hundreds of thousands of good quality jobs for Americans. Clean energy is the fastest-growing energy sector in the United States, with more new electricity from wind and solar than any other source since 2014. Wind and solar power now support hundreds of thousands of workers, including more than 21,000 factory workers who make the majority of domestic wind farm components in states like Florida, Kansas and Colorado.Compared to overall job creation, the solar industry had 12 times faster job growth last year. Solar jobs now outnumber those for oil and natural gas extraction.2. Clean energy is popular across the political spectrum. There is strong, bipartisan support for wind and solar power, which provides people with greater flexibility and independence. That’s why renewable energy is expanding in states from Texas to Maine and Iowa to Florida.In Gov. Perry’s home state of Texas, 85 percent of registered voters, including 78 percent of Republicans, favor more clean energy deployment. A post-election survey found that 75 percent of Trump voters support “action to accelerate the deployment and use of clean energy.”3. American businesses are committed to clean energy. Google recently announced it would draw electricity from 100 percent renewable sources by 2017. Earlier this fall, GM committed to moving all of its operations and manufacturing to 100 percent renewable energy by 2050, which its CEO, Mary Barra, said would bring cleaner air and low-cost energy to the business.Overall, more than 82 major companies have now signaled they are moving to 100 percent renewable energy. Many companies, including those in the Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance, are working with utilities and regulators to bring more clean energy to the electrical grid.4. The United States can export clean energy technology to overseas markets. Just recently, Argentina’s government awarded more than 1,200 megawatts of clean energy capacity – the United States can help provide clean tech and expertise to support these projects. Forty-seven countries recently committed to 100 percent renewable energy and 155 countries have government policies that support the deployment of renewables.5. The U.S. government saves taxpayers between $150-200 million every year through Energy Service Performance Contracts. These programs bring in private sector funding and knowledge to upgrade energy efficiency and supply renewable power at U.S. government facilities at no cost to the American taxpayer.The DOE plays an important role in supporting innovation that fills a critical gap for U.S. businesses seeking to get new technologies off the ground. For example, the DOE has programs to advance the development of battery storage, solar panels and electric vehicles. These vital initiatives should be expanded, not curtailed by the new administration.The DOE can also encourage private sector investment and expand federal funding for clean energy research and development. Bill Gates, who announced a new $1 billion clean energy investment fund, has called for the government to triple its energy-related research and development to $18 billion.The DOE can provide training programs for clean energy workers and support communities that are shifting away from traditional energy sources.If confirmed, Gov. Perry will have the chance to champion clean energy. With $25 trillion in global energy infrastructure to be built by 2030 and wind and solar becoming cost competitive, a clean energy revolution is underway. The American people and the economy would benefit from joining this movement.last_img read more

How to Objectively Evaluate Your Next Job Candidate

first_img Topics: Agency Talent This post originally appeared on The Agency Post. To read more content like this, subscribe to The Agency Post.When it comes to interviewing candidates, our greatest enemy is ourselves. We lose objectivity and justify guesses with subjective evidence. We find arguments to justify our decisions and prove our analysis is correct.To make matters worse, we hamstring our honest and good-faith efforts before we even get to the interview. Most hiring managers walk into an interview without a strategy or framework for finding the best candidate.Consider this: You have six candidates interviewing for a position, and each person is interviewed by four different people. That results in 24 interviews where people ask the same questions, hear different answers, and form different opinions.This sort of interview process propagates subjective decision-making and leads to costly mistakes in hiring. A well thought-out interview process and candidate evaluation framework provides guideposts to keep the hiring team objective and rooted to assessing each candidate on the same proven criteria.Identify Your Primary CriteriaLet’s use the example of hiring an account manager to walk through the process.First, you need to boil down the skills, talents, and experience you are looking for to a list of 8-12 criteria that will be used to evaluate each candidate. Here’s an example of a few points you might include:1) Self-StarterAs the lead point person for multiple clients, an account manager must have an exuberance for tackling the highest priorities without direction or approval from her supervisors.2) Marketing AptitudeAccount managers are known to be jacks-of-all-trades, but you need a candidate who has specialized knowledge in a specific field such as inbound marketing, search, retail marketing, and so on.3) Emotional IntelligenceThe client-agency relationship is never without some bumps, and the best account managers have a sixth sense about how happy clients are. Often the fate of a long-term relationship is not determined by the original mistake, but by how your agency responds. The account manager is on the front lines and needs to be equipped to handle these situations.4) CuriosityClients are looking to agencies for the “big ideas.” The ideal account manager is not only interested in the needs of their clients but is also invested in self-education.5) Team PlayerServing clients is a team sport, and the account manager must thrive in a collaborative environment.Create a ScorecardThe next step is to compile your criteria into an interview scorecard that each interviewer must use in her assessment of a candidate.An example might of an interview scorecard might look like this:You should have multiple people interview a candidate, but their opinions should be formed around the same criteria.While the goal is to find quality employees, a successful interview is one in which you accurately judge whether a candidate will be a good fit for the role and your agency.Your Hiring StoolWhile you’ve outlined a large list of criteria to judge candidates on, you should also identify skills or attributes a person must have to qualify for the position. This could be either personality traits that are key to maintaining your agency’s culture or specific skills for the position.Imagine these criteria are like the three legs of a stool. Without one or more of those legs, the stool will fall over. A candidate who doesn’t meet all three points can’t be successful in her individual role or at the agency. If a candidate is missing one of these key traits, you can’t hire the candidate. This way, you can objectively rule out many applicants and can judge all those that make it through interviewing on a focused set of issues.What are the three criteria that make up your hiring stool?Want more content like this? Subscribe to The Agency Post. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Nov 29, 2014 8:00:00 AM, updated July 28 2017last_img read more

The Best Storyboarding Software of 2019 for Any Budget

first_img User Experience Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! Originally published Jun 19, 2018 6:00:00 AM, updated July 12 2019 Today, video can help marketers do a lot of things — it can help you explain your product or service, it can increase traffic to your website, and it can even convince people to purchase a product.72% of people would rather use video to learn about a product or service. Even if you have a powerful written content strategy, if you don’t use video, you’re losing traffic to more video-heavy competitors.Your business is probably already using video for marketing purposes (since, in 2018, 81% of businesses are), but are you planning your videos for optimal success, or are you drawing shots by hands or writing a script and winging the rest?Access videos, templates, and tips, to help you launch an effective video marketing strategy. Whether you use video for training, sales, or demo purposes, storyboarding can alleviate the time-consuming nature of video preparation, while also increasing your video’s overall quality and decreasing production errors.If you’re looking for a tool to take your video production process to the next level in 2018, take a look at our list of the best storyboarding software out there — no matter your budget.1. StoryboarderStoryboarder is open source and free, making it one of your best options if you’re working with a smaller budget. The program has a clean interface with all the necessary tools at your disposal, so it’s easy to quickly draw shapes and characters. You can also write dialogue, and enter timing information and shot type.Storyboarder works collaboratively with Photoshop, which means you can edit your board in Photoshop for more precision, and it will automatically update in Storyboarder. This software lets you export to Premiere, Final Cut, Avid, PDF, or Animated GIF.Price: FreeImage courtesy of Storyboarder. 2. PlotAdrian Thompson made animated videos for seven years, and “came to despise how tedious it was to edit a basic storyboard template.” His frustration led him to create Plot, a free and fast storyboard creator with impressive users such as WeightWatchers, Vistaprint, and Workday.Each feature aims to make your process as quick and efficient as possible. You can add and delete scenes without copying and pasting text, incorporate images from anywhere on the web to visualize scenes faster, and collaborate with coworkers from within the software. Plot is a solid option if your team often works under tight deadlines and needs a software to create storyboards quickly.Price: Free, or Premium for $7.50/monthImage courtesy of Plot. 3. Frameforge Storyboard StudioWith impressive users including HBO, Netflix, and BBC, Frameforge is the real deal, but your team can still benefit even if you don’t have animation, drawing, or highly technical computer skills.Frameforge offers core and pro versions of their product, and the pro option allows you to plan where you’ll place dollies and cranes (down to the inch). The software lets you import a script from any scriptwriting program. Plus, the storyboards include movement arrows, framing notations, angle of view, focal length, and more, so everyone on your video team, from preparation to production, is on the same page. It works on any mobile device, and the export functions make it possible to download the final product as a Powerpoint presentation. Frameforge is a good option for teams that aim to create more full-fledged and lengthy videos for entertainment purposes.Price: $299.95 for Frameforge 4 Core Full, $599 for Frameforge 4 Pro FullImage courtesy of Frameforge. 4. StudiobinderStudiobinder lets you customize every aspect of your visualization, and offers tools to filter columns, adjust the order of your scenes, upload images, change aspect ratios, color code shots, add notes, and more. Studiobinder also makes collaboration easy, with project management features to assign tasks and add comments. Plus, if you want to preview your project from within the platform to show your team, there’s a nifty presentation mode. It touts impressive clients including BuzzFeed, ESPN, and CBS Interactive. This option is good for teams who need to collaborate on various stages of the video production process, and prefer customizable tools.Price: Free, or $49/month for ProfessionalImage courtesy of Studiobinder. 5. MoviestormYou’ll have flashbacks to The Sims when you first test out Moviestorm, which takes you step-by-step through the process of creating 3D characters, directing a scene, framing your shots, adding and deleting in-scene objects, recording the movie, and adding music and sounds. Moviestorm’s product is an effective all-in-one solution, and is helpful whether you’re creating a company commercial, training video, or corporate presentation. You can try it free for 14 days. This is a good option if your team wants to visualize and even pitch the full video start-to-finish in accurate detail, or create a full-fledged product from within the app itself.Price: $225 for Moviestorm MaxImage courtesy of Moviestorm. 6. Storyboard Fountain (for Mac)If you’re not necessarily interested in the fancier movie-making options in the list, Storyboard Fountain is a simple, user-friendly interface for quickly drawing stick figures and incorporating text for scene details. The marker, pencil, and pen tools respond to Wacom sensors. When you’re happy with your storyboard, you can record audio and board timing, so you can playback the video to pitch your idea. Best of all, it’s open source and free, making it a fantastic option for teams working with a smaller budget.Price: FreeImage courtesy of Storyboard Fountain. 7. PowerProduction SoftwarePowerProduction Software offers a variety of tools for storyboarding, varying from simple to more robust and all-inclusive. StoryBoard Quick, for instance, offers a library of artwork for characters, props, and locations, and allows you to design and share your ideas easily. StoryBoard Artist, on the other hand, offers a full-featured timeline, frame transitions, and 3D characters, and is more appropriate for animated video presentations. PowerProduction Software also provides iPhone and Android app versions of their products, so you can visualize and create from anywhere. These products are used by big-names including Disney, Universal, and 20th Century Fox, so if you choose this software, you’re in good company. If your team is interested in creating lengthy, high-quality, and even animated videos, this could be a good option.Price: $129.99/year for StoryBoard Quick, or $269.99/year for StoryBoard Artist 7Image courtesy of PowerProduction Software.8. CanvaCreating a storyboard doesn’t have to stress you out, and Canva makes it especially easy, with a library of templates to choose from, one million stock images (or the option to upload your own), and grids and frames to organize your scenes. You can choose font type, color, and include headers and subheaders. If you’re working with someone else on script or design, you can grant access for collaboration, and when you’re finished, share the design with your team through email or as a PDF file. If your team needs a simple and easy software for simpler projects or to get your feet wet with the process of storyboarding, this is a good option.Price: FreeImage courtesy of Canva. 9. BoordsBoords offers an all-in-one pre-production storyboarding software, with drag-and-drop tools and flexible frames. It also offers a unique Animatic Tool, and when you’re ready to share your animatic, you can share it online for feedback or export to Boords’ After Effects plugin. Plus, you can share your storyboard with coworkers or clients and let them comment within the platform. With a free trial and incredibly low prices after that, there’s no reason not to try it if you’re interested in using storyboarding for animatics or simpler projects.Price: Free Trial, then $19/month for Plus version or $24/month for Team versionImage courtesy of Boords. last_img read more

The 7 Best Smartphones for Business in 2019

first_img Originally published Oct 15, 2018 7:00:00 AM, updated February 05 2019 We rely on smartphones to connect with our friends and family and stay informed about current events. But it seems like the only time we use smartphones for work is when we check our email.Today, smartphone technology has advanced to the point where you can get a substantial amount of work done with just your thumbs — smartphones can now access your work documents, take professional-grade photos, and even translate signs that are in different languages.Download our complete workplace productivity guide here.If you want to be more productive during your commute or be able to work on the go, check out these seven smartphones for business.Best smartphones for businessiPhone XsGoogle Pixel 2 XLSamsung Galaxy S9+BlackBerry KEY2Microsoft Lumia 950OnePlus 6LG V35 ThinQ 1. iPhone XsImage Credit: Digital TrendsApple’s latest iPhone isn’t just a slightly bigger yet marked-up version of the iPhone 8. It’s on the pricier side for good reason.Armed with a Gigabit-class LTE, 512 GB of storage, and an intelligence A12 bionic chip that has a neural engine, the iPhone Xs can deliver up to 50% faster graphics performance, 15% faster performance cores, and 50% lower power usage in efficiency cores. In other words, it’s one of the fastest and powerful smartphones on the market.The iPhone Xs also has one of the most powerful smartphone cameras on the market. You can shoot 4K videos in up to 60 frames per second and take professional-grade pictures with the camera’s larger and deeper pixels and sophisticated portrait mode.2. Google Pixel 2 XLImage Credit: ForbesGoogle might not be able to get a social network to catch on, but they can definitely build a phone. Powered by Google Assistant, the Pixel 2XL can listen to your commands and text and set reminders for you, turn on Bluetooth, and activate Google Lens, which can identify landmarks, objects, and even scan business cards to add contact information into your smartphone.The Google Pixel 2XL is also incredibly powerful and efficient — it has storage options of 64 or 128 GB and will give you up to seven hours of battery life with only a 15-minute charge.3. Samsung Galaxy S9+Image Credit: Trusted ReviewsThe Samsung Galaxy S9+ might be one of the best smartphones for business travel and security. Powered by Bixby Vision, the Galaxy S9+’s camera can translate up to 54 languages on signs and menus to help you navigate any foreign country you’re traveling through.The smartphone’s camera also features intelligent scan, which combines face recognition and iris scanning to instantly recognize you in any light and even when you’re wearing sunglasses.You can buy the Samsung Galaxy S9+ in two storage options: 64 GB and 128 GB.4. BlackBerry KEY2Image Credit: The VergeEven though BlackBerry has lost its dominance in the business smartphone market, the company still pioneered the trend of working on your phone and develops some of the most advanced smartphones for business.The KEY2, powered by Android, is branded as “An Icon Reborn” because BlackBerry kept their classic physical keyboards on the smartphone but also upgraded it by making the keys 20% bigger and adding a Speed Key button that can activate 52 custom shortcuts to apps and specific actions.The KEY 2 also offers some of the strongest smartphone security with the BlackBerry DTEK app, giving you the ability to see and alter which applications have access to your camera, microphone, location, and personal information.You can also keep files and photos completely private with BlackBerry Locker, a pre-downloaded app that hides your files and photos from anyone who could access your phone.BlackBerry’s KEY2 has up to 256 GB in storage space and its battery can stay powered for up to two days on just one charge.5. Microsoft Lumia 950Image Credit: CNetThe Microsoft Lumia 950 is like a mini PC. Powered by Windows 10, the smartphone syncs with all your other Windows 10 devices, so you can access any of your Office documents, presentations, spreadsheets, notes, and photos.You can also connect the Lumia 950 to a Microsoft Display Dock and use it like a computer to access your files from any Windows app, letting you work comfortably from home, even if you forgot your laptop at the office.The Lumia 950 has up to 200 GB in storage space, OneDrive cloud storage, and built-in wireless charging.6. OnePlus 6Image Credit: CNetBy developing their own operating system, OxygenOS, OnePlus’ flagship smartphone will help you get more work done in less time. Whether you’re working, browsing, or shifting through apps, the OnePlus 6’s smart software can optimize your experience based off your habits on your phone.You can buy the OnePlus 6 in two storage options: 128 GB or 256 GB.7. LG V35 ThinQImage Credit: CNetAnother smartphone powered by Google Assistant, the LG V35 ThinQ’s can assist you in real-time, identify objects you hover your phone over, and pick up your voice in noisy environments.The V35 ThinQ also has an Artificial Intelligence camera that can recognize the subject and environment in your frame and suggest the best filters and angle for your photo.You can store up to 64 GB on the smartphone.center_img Don’t forget to share this post!last_img read more

New rules for CBSE registration issued: How to fill details on OASIS, what schools and students need to note

first_imgCBSE has issued new rules for the CBSE Registration for class 9 and class 11 students to appear for their board exams. No corrections will be allowed this year onwards. Check out the new CBSE Registration rules and mandates here.The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has changed the registration rules for Class 9 students in an effort to streamline the board examination process. CBSE Registrations will now be conducted earlier than before. CBSE Registrations have begun from August 8, 2019. Here are the new rules for CBSE Registration:1. In 2020, the CBSE board exams for classes 10 and 12 will be conducted via 16 regional offices of CBSE which have send the new school codes to all schools. Henceforth, schools will need to use these codes for communication with CBSE.2. All CBSE schools will need to register themselves before online registration submissions. Schools need to use their ‘Affiliation Number’ as the user ID. Schools can get the password from the concerned regional office, after which they should change the password and protect it.3. Schools need to ensure they are following the CBSE rules in terms of candidate registration, classroom availability, and the number of teachers. The teacher-student ration should be 1:30 and the number of class sections cannot exceed the number permitted by CBSE.4. Class 9 and class 11 examinations have to be conducted internally by the schools.5. 6. Schools can complete the registration process by individual entry or by uploading a filled-in Excel file provided by the online registration system.6. 8. Schools should send the signed copy of finalized data of Registration of class IX/XI to the concerned regional office only and not to CBSE, Preet Vihar, Delhi.advertisement7. In case of any difficulty during registration or payment refund issues, schools should contact their concerned regional office of CBSE.8. As per ‘The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act 2016’, CBSE is extending several exemptions/concessions to candidates with disabilities. Check details here: Only those students whose names are submitted through the online registration process will be allowed to appear for the February-April 2021 board examinations for classes 10 and 12.10. CBSE schools have to update student data on OASIS before registration.How students and schools need to update data on online portal for CBSE Registration ‘OASIS’:Only those TGTs/PGTs who are teaching Classes IX-X/XI-XII respectively should be shown as TGT/PGT to ensure appointment of eligible evaluators for quality evaluation.The full names of all the teachers shall be filled in the OASIS and not abbreviations.CBSE has recently amended its affiliation Bye-laws which in addition to making a minimum of 5 days of in-service training programmes per year of teachers mandatory. Accordingly, each of the private independent school affiliated to CBSE is required to pay a minimum Training Development fee of Rs 10,000 (schools located in India) / Rs.50000 (schools located abroad) annually to CBSE from the session 2019-20 onwards.All independent schools situated in India have to deposit Sports Fee of Rs.10,000 along with the registration fee. This fee will be collected through the online system by default. No separate sports fee is required to be sent by the schools situated in India.CBSE has prescribed a scheme of studies and schools are required to offer the subjects in adherence with the Scheme of Studies only.Details of all students should be submitted only in one lot for each fee slab. Partial submission of data will be not allowed in a fee slab. Meaning thereby, in each slot only one list of the students will be acceptedSchools shall have to upload the photographs and signature of their bonafide students in Class IX/XI registration before final submission11. Online submission of CBSE registration shall close at 5:00 pm on the designated dates. Schools should complete the work much before time to avoid delay due to server or internet issues.12. Schools should submit data in OASIS without any penalty till 30.9.2019, after which, a penalty as applicable in 2018 shall be imposed.13. From this year onwards, students won’t be allowed to update their information in the hard copy of CBSE Registration. It is the responsibility of the schools to ensure that the correct data is uploaded.How schools can ensure that CBSE Registration data being submitted is correct:CBSE Registration details will be provided to the students and the parents in the form of a registration card by the school to confirm the correctness of details.The List of Candidate (LOC) will be based on the data provided in Registration record. Parents will sign the LOC as a confirmation of the correctness of data.Parents will sign an undertaking at the back of the Class X and XII certificate that they have checked the data and found correct.advertisement14. Schools should check the following data submitted by students for CBSE Registration when uploading the information:Spelling of name of student/mother/father/guardian is correct and is as per the Admission and Withdrawal Register maintained by the school. The full names should be used and not abbreviations to avoid later confusionDate of Birth is correct and is as per Admission and Withdrawal Register maintained by the schoolAs per Examination Bye-Laws, schools need to ensure that the student, while seeking admission in a class, satisfies the requirement of age limit (minimum and maximum)Subject combinations are correct and as per Scheme of StudiesSubject codes should be chosen carefully and especially in the following subjects:in Class 9: Hindi – A (002), Hindi – B(085), Urdu A(003), Urdu B(303), Mathematics Standard(041), Mathematics Basic(241).in Class 11: Hindi Core(302), Hindi Elective(002), English Core(301), English Elective(001) Sanskrit Core(322), Sanskrit Elective(022), Urdu Core(303), Urdu Elective(003)15. Here are the points schools need to remember while submitting student names for CBSE Registration as per the CBSE notification:Every affiliated school shall present a list of number of students and their particulars in respect of Classes IX, X, XI & XII at the time of beginning of an academic session in the manner prescribed by the board.No affiliated school shall present the candidates to the Board’s examination who are not on its rolls.No affiliated school shall present the candidates to the Board’s examination who are enrolled in an unaffiliated School/Branch.No affiliated school shall present the candidates to the Board’s examination who are on its roll but have not attended the school regularly or do not meet the requirement of minimum attendance for appearance in the Board’s examination.Every affiliated school shall sponsor regularly its bonafide and eligible students in Boards Class X and Class XII examinations from the year mentioned while granting affiliation/upgradation regularly without break or inform with reasons thereof in writing well in time about the non-sponsoring of the candidates.The school affiliated to the Board shall not send candidates for examination of any other Board/University. It shall prepare candidates for the Secondary and Senior Secondary examinations of the CBSE only.For more details on the CBSE notification, check the full CBSE notification here: any queries call at CBSE Helpline No. 1800-11-8002 between 9:30 am to 5:30 pm on all working days.Read: CBSE hikes exam fees for class 10, 12: Check details hereRead: CBSE exam fee hike 2019: A timeline of controversial commentsRead: CBSE introduces experiential learning from 2019-20 sessionRead: CBSE board asks schools to report cases of short attendancelast_img read more