Simmons suspended!

first_imgBRIDGETOWN, Barbados (CMC):Phil Simmons was yesterday suspended as West Indies head coach for criticising the selection process regarding the one-day team for the upcoming tour of Sri Lanka.The Trinidadian, only appointed six months ago, made the shocking move of slamming the omission of Kieron Pollard and Dwayne Bravo from the yet-to-be announced ODI squad, claiming there had been “outside interference” in the selection process.In a statement, the West Indies Cricket Board said it had “learnt of the comments from head coach of the West Indies team Phil Simmons in the print and electronic media which appear to question the legitimacy of the selection process of the one-day international squad for the tour of Sri Lanka”.”As a result, the management of the WICB has taken action to suspend the head coach, pending an investigation into the issue,” the release said.”The head coach will not now travel with the team on the tour of Sri Lanka.”Ironically, one group of West Indies players were scheduled to leave here yesterday for the Test tour of Sri Lanka, with the second group set to depart today.Eldine Baptiste, who was expected to be the ‘selector on tour’, will now replace Simmons for the two-Test series which will be followed by the one-day series.In a media conference at the conclusion of the team-preparation camp last Friday, Simmons took the unusual step of accusing “people” of using their “influence” to determine squad selection.”I think it’s disappointing from the fact that I haven’t got the best 50-over ODI squad that we can select in the Caribbean,” Simmons said.”The chairman, Mr (Clive) Lloyd, he came and he gave an exceptional speech, saying that he thinks it is time they (Bravo and Pollard) are back in the squad, and he gave exceptional reasons for them being back in the squad.No success in meeting”Unfortunately, when we went into the selection [meeting], we lost it 3-2. Him and myself – the captain (Jason Holder) doesn’t have a vote in this – but the captain also gave his views as why they need to be back.”He added: “That’s not the disappointing fact. The disappointing fact is that you can lose 3-2 in a vote-off, but there is too much interference from outside in the selection of the ODI squad, and it’s disappointing for me to know that in any aspect of life … [people would use] their position to get people into a squad, or in this case, get people left out of a squad.”It is wrong, and I don’t like it, and that is my beef with the selection of the ODI team.”Simmons was appointed last March following the ICC Cricket World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, and has overseen home series against England and Australia.West Indies drew the three-Test series against England, 1-1, but lost the two-Test series to Australia, 2-0.Simmons, 52, is a former West Indies cricketer, who played 26 Tests and 143 ODIs between 1987 and 1999.last_img read more

A detective’s detective, LAPD’s Coffey stepping down

first_imgMike Coffey listens to dead people. Working the last 19 years as a homicide detective in the LAPD’s North Hollywood Division, the 59-year-old Simi Valley resident considers the ability to listen – to the living and the dead – as the key ingredient in cracking a case. “When I go to a homicide scene, I try to see what the dead person is trying to tell me, as bizarre as that might sound,” Coffey said. “I’m sitting there trying to see what was this person doing just before they died.” He’s worked 410 homicide cases, the names of victims and suspects and the details of the crime scenes filling three black notebooks. He’s solved an impressive 82 percent of his cases – an accomplishment that earned him the reputation as a detective’s detective. But after 35 years on the Los Angeles Police Department and nearly two decades in homicide, Coffey is retiring. “His respect for his victims, his respect for their families, his respect for the value of life has always come through,” said Deputy Chief Michel Moore, the top-ranking officer in the San Fernando Valley. “It’s hard to imagine LAPD without Mike Coffey.” Coffey was born and raised in the Valley, graduating from Crespi Carmelite High School before enlisting in the Air Force and serving in the Vietnam War. He joined the LAPD in 1972, a rail-thin blond with just 135 pounds on his 5-foot-8-inch frame. After one too many wrestling matches with emboldened drunk-driving suspects, Coffey decided to bulk up, adding 40 pounds through exercise and diet. The mano-a-mano faceoffs with drunks ended soon after. Today, the gray-haired Coffey maintains his solid build by jogging five miles a day and lifting weights. A deeply religious man who occasionally prays for spiritual help in solving cases, Coffey has spent a career defying the Hollywood stereotype of the hard-edged detective. “It’s not so much being a tough guy,” he said. “That’s not part of this game at all. … It’s not a male thing, it’s not a female thing. … It’s just being able to show a little knowledge and aggressiveness and determination, but to respect the people you’re talking to, no matter what you think they did.” And they’ve done a lot. As lead detective and head of his division’s gang unit, Coffey has investigated drive-by shootings, home-invasion robberies that turned deadly, drug deals gone awry. He’s viewed thousands of corpses but has never found it easy to witness so much pain and suffering. “You just have to do it; you have a job to do,” Coffey said. “Your responsibilities are to the deceased, so you’re just going to have to bite the bullet and stick in there. Especially with the child deaths, it’s awfully hard to see.” The very first homicide case he investigated involved a young boy who accidentally shot his brother with their father’s gun. His last investigation was the day before Christmas 2006, when a man beating his live-in girlfriend was fatally stabbed by the woman’s 17-year-old son – a case ruled a justifiable homicide. “That was Christmas Eve,” Coffey said. “Nobody had even eaten dinner yet. The spirit of the holiday is shattered and the whole family is shattered.” Homicides during holidays are not uncommon, Coffey said, adding that the one thing he could never get used to as a detective was “call outs” – those calls that come at the most inopportune times, beckoning the detective to a newly discovered crime scene. He’d get call outs at 3 a.m. while fast asleep or during his children’s birthday parties – and often during major holidays. But it was there he’d do some of his best work, “listening” respectfully to the dead – a tangible experience he could draw on later, putting faces to crimes, seeing firsthand a potential murderer’s work – pieces of a puzzle fixed in the senses – to be solved later. Coffey’s son, Eric Coffey, himself a six-year LAPD patrol officer with the Devonshire Division, said his father is so serious at a crime scene that those working under him him use a code word to announce his arrival: CHAOS. “It means `Coffey has arrived on scene,’ so get yourself together,” Eric said with a chuckle. “He has a strict way he wants a murder scene to be set up.” Coffey was surprised when Eric announced that he wanted to join the force. But once he did, the two grew closer. “He tells me little tidbits on how to do things better,” Eric said. As for Coffey, he says it was 35 years well spent, particularly his time heading up homicide, doing his best to honor the lives of those no longer living. “What can be more important than solving the death of a human being?” he said. rick.coca@dailynews.com (818) 713-3329 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

Arsenal v Fulham line-ups: Hangeland starts, Arsenal man passed fit

first_imgFulham skipper Brede Hangeland, who was assessed after returning to action in midweek, has been passed fit to face Arsenal. Nacho Monreal starts for the Gunners after recovering from a foot injury.Arsenal: Szczesny, Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal, Flamini, Wilshere, Cazorla, Gnabry, Ozil, Giroud.Subs: Fabianski, Jenkinson, Gibbs, Rosicky, Podolski, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ju-Young Park.Fulham Stekelenburg; Riether, Burn, Hangeland, Richardson; Dejagah, Sidwell, Parker, Kacaniklic; Dempsey, Berbatov.Subs: Stockdale, Riise, Kasami, Karagounis, Duff, Hughes, Bent.Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

Molecular Clock Keeps Wild Time

first_imgEvolutionists used to hope that the mutation rates in genes were relatively constant, so that they could provide a kind of “molecular clock” for inferring dates of divergence of ancestral species.  The first bad news was that not all molecular clocks tick at the same rate (rate heterogeneity).  Then they hoped that rate differences corresponded to body size, because there appeared to be such a trend among vertebrates.  The second bad news now comes out; according to an international team publishing in PNAS,1 rate variation does not scale with body size:The existence of a universal molecular clock has been called into question by observations that substitution rates vary widely between lineages.  However, increasing empirical evidence for the systematic effects of different life history traits on the rate of molecular evolution has raised hopes that rate variation may be predictable, potentially allowing the “correction” of the molecular clock.  One such example is the body size trend observed in vertebrates; smaller species tend to have faster rates of molecular evolution….    Phylogenetic comparative methods were used to investigate a relationship between average body size and substitution rate at both interspecies and interfamily comparison levels.  We demonstrate significant rate variation in all phyla and most genes examined, implying a strict molecular clock cannot be assumed for the Metazoa.  Furthermore, we find no evidence of any influence of body size on invertebrate substitution rates.  We conclude that the vertebrate body size effect is a special case, which cannot be simply extrapolated to the rest of the animal kingdom.   (Emphasis added in all quotes.)1Thomas et al., “Evolution: There is no universal molecular clock for invertebrates, but rate variation does not scale with body size,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, published online before print May 1, 2006; Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 10.1073/pnas.0510251103.Though disappointing to Darwinists, this will in no way affect their theories, because Darwinism does not rely on empirical evidence for support.  Evidence is just a nice thing to have when available.  Darwinism is more like entertainment; the show must go on.  Should non-Darwinists call this entertainment a comedy, or a tragedy?(Visited 6 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Para-canoeist Stu Hogg leads the way

first_img“Straight away, when I went to rehab, what kept me going was the thought of paddling again. They were telling me that I might not walk again. My mental drive was to try and get back in a boat, and to walk out of the hospital.” Feeling normal “The paddling guys have been a big help to me. Everyone has been really nice.” South Africa had just one participant at the first ever ICF Para-Canoe World Championships in Duisberg, Germany in August. Stu Hogg is taking the country’s rich paddling tradition in a new direction. 4 October 2013 ‘A big disadvantage’ “Luckily, the guy who operated on me, one of the top neuro-surgeons, was available that next morning,” Hogg, now 24, told SAinfo during an interview this week. “He and another neuro-surgeon did the operation, and apparently it was quite a thing because they had to operate through the front and the back of my neck. They had to put a cage-like device into my neck to fuse the vertebrae. Looking back on his experiences at the first ICF Para-canoe World Championships, Hogg said: “This year it was very hard to compete because they put me in a very difficult class. I was racing with guys who had, for example, a problem with a leg, and it’s very hard for me to have half my body – an arm, my trunk and leg issues – to compete with someone missing a foot, especially because of a lot of spasticity in the nerve function. It’s a big disadvantage. Someone with a leg problem has an upper body that is still 100 percent. The reward for Hogg’s hard work has been wonderful, he said. “Now, being able to compete, once I am on the water and training I don’t really feel disabled anymore. I feel like part of the paddling community again, regardless of my disability. I feel like a normal paddler now. “My results this year weren’t great, but all I wanted this year was to get in the system. They have spoken about changing my class. I’ll know about that next year.” Vertebrae fused Hogg had won national colours as a junior, but wearing them again appeared to be a distant memory because para-canoeing did not exist when he suffered his injury. And it took some time before he was able to take to the water again.center_img “That feeling helps me with the rest of my life because if I feel normal on the water I can feel a bit more normal when I am not on the water. In Duisberg, Hogg was back in the green-and-gold, and after all the effort it had taken to once again represent South Africa he truly appreciated the experience. “I had really missed that feeling [of sporting the national colours]. It was special,” he said. “I am a lot slower than I used to be, but other than that everyone treats me the same as they did before the accident. I would rather be treated how they treated me before than have people trying to make special arrangements for me. They help out, but make me feel that I’m just one of the guys again.” “Then I found out about para-canoeing. It was a new sport, so I thought I might as well give that a bash, so last year I started training – just very basic, getting into a boat, but I was very weak. It took me a long time to just being able to paddle.” “In the long term, I am hoping that they change the whole classification system by putting in more classes for guys with different disabilities, just to try and even the competition out,” he said. “It took me a good three years to get walking. I could walk within a couple of months, but not comfortably. It took me a while to get walking properly and comfortable with myself,” he explained. Five years ago, while studying in Durban, Hogg was asleep as a passenger in a car when it was involved in an accident. He was thrown out of the back window of the vehicle, suffering a broken neck, broken ribs, fractured vertebrae in his lower back and a head injury. He was in a deep coma for a short while. He has since undergone two operations on his neck. Competing in the K1 200 metres LTA (legs, trunk, arms), he finished eighth in his heat and missed the semi-finals by one place. Walking “This year was a start. I know where I stand, what I’ve got to work on. For now I’m going to work to get as fast as I can be. If they change the classes, that’s a bonus. If not, I am just going to have to work harder.”last_img read more

Maverick Awards give recognition to young SA entrepreneurs

first_imgThe awards were held in Edenvale, to the east of Johannesburg on 26 June, with 19 finalists vying for awards in 10 different categories, as well as for the overall Maverick of the Year AwardBevan Ducasse, the CEO of wiGroup walked away with the inaugural Maverick of the Year Award, which seeks to “recognise, acknowledge as well as celebrate the entrepreneurial genius and prowess displayed by young, hard-nosed entrepreneurs”.Ducasse also won the the Technology Innovation award for wiGroup, which is a platform provider the specialises in point-of-sale mobile transactions, that includes money transfers and payments, coupons and vouchers, and loyalty programmes.The awards were held in Edenvale, to the east of Johannesburg on 26 June, with 19 finalists vying for awards in 10 different categories, as well as for the overall Maverick of the Year Award. The Awards were hosted by Under 35 Mavericks, a 100% youth-owned specialist enterprise development consultancy focused on the sustainable development of young, innovative, high impact, high growth entrepreneurs throughout Africa. Sponsors included Brand South Africa, the Nelson Mandela Foundation, Mercedes-Benz South Africa, South African Airways and others.The MC for the night was Sisa Ntshona, the former head of enterprise development at Absa, with the main speaker for the night being Gauteng MEC for Infrastructure and Development, Nandi Mayathula-Khoza. Other speakers included Nelson Mandela Foundation CEO Sello Hatang; Mercedes-Benz SA group corporate affairs manager Mayur Bhana; Wits Business School’s Centre for Entrepreneurship director Chimene Chetty; and under 35 Mavericks founder Bokang Seritsane.Winners in the categories included:The Emerging Maverick (Entrepreneur) Award – Lize Fouche, founder of Number 1 Foods, a Port Elizabeth-based foodstuffs company that manufactures muesli.Employment Creation Award – Josh Cox, founder of Trade-Mark Trust, a non-profit organisation (registered as a Trust) that connects homeowners wanting to do renovations with the very best, handpicked artisans from the townships.People Planet Profit Award – Misha Teasdale, founder of Greenpop, a social business that plants trees and invites everyone to join the “treevolution”.Without Borders Award – Misha Teasdale, founder of Greenpop.Marketing Innovation Award – Gareth Moll, founder GroundUp Media, which provides photography and videography services to both small and large businesses.Service Innovation Award – Alex Fourie, founder of iFix, a South African company that specialises in repairing Apple devices and RiCharge, a designer and manufacturer of mobile charging solutions.Green Innovation Award – Brian Mpono, founder of Khwezi Oils, which refines waste cooking oil into biofuel.Technology Innovation Award – Bevan Ducasse, founder of wiGroupBlue Ocean Innovation Award – Murray Legg, founder of SA Cardiosynthetics, a venture financed business that is pursuing the commercialisation of a patented heart valve design.last_img read more

A ‘disruptive’ technology: Sandile Ngcobo’s world-first digital laser

first_imgSandile Ngcobo at work testing the digital laser at the CSIR laboratory in Pretoria. (Image: Screengrab via YouTube)Breakthrough experimental work by University of KwaZulu-Natal scientist Sandile Ngcobo as part of his PhD research has led to the development of a world-first digital laser set to open up revolutionary new technologies for medicine, communications, manufacturing, product development and more.Ngcobo was a key part of the team at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research’s National Laser Centre that demonstrated that, instead of resorting to expensive optics or other special mediating devices to control the shape of the light coming out of a laser, laser beams can be digitally controlled from inside the laser device itself.Watch an eNCA documentary on Ngcobo’s research: Watch Ngcobo explaining his technology at TEDxSoweto 2013: First published on Media Club South Africa – Brand South Africa’s library of quality images and articles, available for freelast_img read more

South Africa’s population breaks 54-million

first_img1 August 2014Life expectancy in South Africa continues to rise as the country’s population breaks the 54-million mark, Statistics South Africa reported on Thursday.Releasing its latest mid-year population estimates report in Pretoria, Stats SA said the country’s population grew by an estimated 1.58% between July 2013 and July 2014, increasing by about 844 000 people to stand at just over 54-million in total.According to the report, South Africa’s life expectancy at birth now stands at 61 years, having increased from an estimated 52 years in 2005, thanks to a lower infant mortality rate and a decrease in the number of Aids-related deaths in the country.Stats SA said the decline in South Africa’s infant mortality rate – from an estimated 58 infant deaths per 1 000 live births in 2002 to 34 infant deaths per 1 000 live births in 2014 – pointed to an improvement in the general health and living standards of the population.Aids-related deaths, meanwhile, dropped from an estimated 363 910 deaths (51% of all deaths) in 2005 to 171 733 deaths (31% of all deaths) in 2014, as a direct result of the increased rollout of free antiretroviral therapy in the country.According to Stats SA, the overall number of deaths in the country decreased from an estimated 716 083 deaths (15 deaths per 1 000 people) in 2005 to an estimated 551 289 deaths (10 deaths per 1 000 people) in 2014.At the same time, the country’s birth rate has decreased, from 24 births per 1 000 people in 2002 to 22 births per 1 000 people in 2014.Stats SA said the dual transition from high to low birth and death rates had changed the age structure of South Africa’s population, resulting in both a high proportion (30%) of the population under the age of 15, as well as growing proportion of elderly people, with an estimated 4.5-million people aged 60 years or older.SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

African designers to collaborate with Ikea

first_imgIkea, the Swedish company that specialises in designing and manufacturing furniture, appliances and home technology, wants to collaborate with South African and African designers on its 2019 home décor collection.African design aesthetic in architecture, fashion and the visual arts combines modernity with tradition. It is this unique combination that home décor company Ikea wants to bring to the rest of world in a new collaboration with African designers. (Image: Wikipedia)CD AndersonThanks to an initiative started by Design Indaba South Africa, international home décor company Ikea is working with several African designers in creating the group’s 2019 collection.African design aesthetic in architecture, fashion and the visual arts combines modernity with tradition. It is this unique combination that home décor company Ikea wants to bring to the rest of world in a new collaboration with African designers. (Image: Design Indaba)Over the past 22 years, the Design Indaba has become one of the continent’s premier events for the promotion of African design, art and technology. The 2017 indaba is being held in Cape Town from 1-3 March, at which some of the best the continent has to offer is being highlighted.Ikea was founded in Sweden in 1943 as a mail-order business selling pencils, postcards, and other merchandise. Furniture was added in 1948. Today it is driven by the vision: “To create a better everyday life for the many people”. This is done through creating sophisticated, stylish and quality home décor. As of August 2016, the Ikea Group has 340 stores in 28 countries.African design aesthetic in architecture, fashion and the visual arts combines modernity with tradition. It is this unique combination that home décor company Ikea wants to bring to the rest of world in a new collaboration with African designers. (Image: Ikea)Thanks to Design Indaba’s founder, Ravi Naidoo, and Ikea head of design Marcus Engman, this global brand will feature a significant African aesthetic across its range, spotlighting the work of African architects, illustrators and designers.“The creative explosion which is taking place in several cities around Africa right now is something Ikea is curious about. We want to learn from this and spread it to the rest of the world,” Engman told CNN.Design Indaba 2017 promotes the work of creatives from South Africa, Kenya, Senegal, Egypt, Angola, Ivory Coast and Rwanda for consideration for the Ikea project, centred on the theme of modern rituals and the importance they play in the home.“We have learnt so much from the collaboration to date,” Naidoo wrote on the Design Indaba website. “The scale at Ikea is staggering, yet it is still true to its founding principles, with which we find such symmetry. It looks towards democratising design and is happy to be infiltrated by external ideas. In addition, we love its credo: a better everyday life for everyone. Now, urban Africa and our intrepid pan-continental group of reformers, thinkers, makers and activists will also inspire it.”Some of the big names in African design participating in the project include renowned Rwandan architect Christian Benimana and Senegalese fashion designer Selly Raby Kane, whose eclectic, proudly African designs are a favourite of international stars such as Beyoncé and Rihanna.South African knitwear designer Laduma Ngxokolo, with his quirky Xhosa beadwork-inspired creations, is also one of the Ikea collaborators.Another big African name in the world of architecture, Ivorian Issa Diabate, says the project is a chance for the world to see a modern African design aesthetic. “Certain approaches in many urban African environments could benefit or contaminate the international world of design,” he said in a statement on the Design Indaba website.The collection will launch in Ikea stores around the world in 2019. While Ikea does not have much of a presence in Africa, with its only African stores in Morocco and Egypt, Engman says the company will be using this African collaboration as an opportunity to evaluate new markets further south.Read CNN’s full piece on the origins of the Ikea Design Indaba project here.Source: CNN, AFK InsiderWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

Easily Create Captions in Adobe Premiere Pro

first_imgStep 1: Create a New Caption FileClick the New Item button at the bottom of the Project Panel and select Captions. The new caption file will be a video file, and the settings will match with the current sequence you have open. You can manually adjust width and height, frame rate, and pixel aspect ratio before creating your new caption file.You have four choices of captions, including three options for closed captions. For the purpose of this tutorial, we’ll create a CEA-708 closed caption file. Be sure to Enable the Closed Captions Display in the Program Monitor and select the correct caption type. Drag the Caption video file onto the timeline.Step 2: Adding, Timing, and Formatting Your CaptionsSelect the Caption file and use the Caption Panel to add text, time, or to format your text. If you can’t see the Caption Panel, simply go to the window menu, and select Captions. Click the Plus button to add a new text box. Make sure your In and Out points match up with the spoken word.You can view the captions in the timeline by expanding the video track. You have a few formatting options, including the type of caption (pop-on, paint-on, 2-4 roll-up lines) and some simple positioning options. With open captions, you have a few extra options, such as additional fonts and size adjustments.Step 3: ExportIn the Export Settings dialog box, use the Caption tab to export the captions as Burn-in or as a Sidecar file. A Burn-in will naturally “burn” the captions into the video file, and viewers will not have the option to turn them off. When you export as a Sidecar file, you will be provided with an additional .scc file which you can upload or deliver with your video files.For more helpful walk-throughs and video tutorials, head on over to PremiumBeats YouTube channel! Creating captions can be a tedious process — but with Adobe Premiere Pro, you can easily create both open and closed captions, all from within the program.Top image via ShutterstockCaptions are simply text over video. You can create closed or open captions, the main difference being that viewers can turn off closed captions, while open captions are always on screen. Whichever option you go with, captions are always a good idea.Adobe’s latest update adds the ability to easily create open captions from within Premiere. Let’s take a look at how to add captions in Adobe Premiere Pro with a few simple steps. Watch the video tutorial directly below and then follow the step-by-step directions to add the technique to your skill set.last_img read more