Five things we learned Thursday at Raiders HQ

first_imgALAMEDA — Raiders running back Josh Jacobs didn’t practice again Thursday, but as he talked for a few minutes with the media, paused to put on a pullover hooded sweat shirt.Not exactly the same as taking on J.J. Watt in the hole, but enough for some optimism regarding the availability of the NFL’s leading rookie rusher Sunday when the Raiders visit the Houston Texans.Jacobs said he injured his shoulder in the Raiders’ 42-24 loss to the Green Bay Packers on his first run from scrimmage, …last_img read more

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Up-cycling for a better community

first_imgSAfmarine’s container classroom for Vissershoek Primary School in the Western Cape. The ‘sport in a box’ Piketberg container project, which was shortlisted as one of 12 contenders in the running for the 2011/2012 AfriSam/SAIA Award for Sustainable Architecture.(Images: Tsai Design Studio)MEDIA CONTACTS • Debbie OwenMedia Manager, SAfmarine+27 21 788 9962RELATED ARTICLES• Education at the movies• Board game makes Aids education fun• SA education project wins top award• A winning open education systemCadine Pillay The term ‘up-cycling’ is often used to describe the conversion of unused items into tools of value that benefit communities. In the case of Copenhagen-based shipping company Safmarine, formed in 1946 in Cape Town, decommissioned shipping containers come in handy with efforts to uplift and improve the quality of education in disadvantaged communities across the country.Containers became popular as multi-purpose tools in the 1990s, rapidly gaining popularity as cost-effective alternatives for infrastructure such as day care centres, school classrooms and even libraries in some communities. One of the latest innovative transformations of a container is into a sports centre for the community of Piketberg, 120km north of Cape Town in the Western Cape.The centre – also referred to as “Sport in a box” – forms part of the Containers in the Community initiative, pioneered by Safmarine in 1991. Through the programme the company has donated more than 8 000 containers to more than 3 000 projects, most of them education-orientated, nationally.A team effortThe sports centre is a collaborative effort between Safmarine, Tsai Design Studio, which designed the facility, and marketing company Star South Fruits. It provides a safe after-school environment for more than 100 children in the area, thanks to the efforts of NGO Stars in their Eyes Foundation, which approached Safmarine.Stars in their Eyes is run jointly by Dutch fresh produce company Cool Fresh International and the Western Cape’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport. Each participating disadvantaged community is twinned with a Dutch football club to give local coaches training in football techniques and life skills, which are then passed on to the youngsters.“The foundation innovatively combines the joy of football with the alleviation of social problems,” said Johan van Niekerk, marketing director of Star South Fruits.“The programme was initiated by Freedom Fruit, an international fresh produce brand established by Cool Fresh International.”Among the centre’s key design elements is a grandstand seating facility for spectators. This runs along one of the container’s long sides and is sheltered by corrugated iron sheeting to provide shade for the audience and the centre. Another innovative element is the advertising space on the opposite side of the container that can be used by local businesses to help generate income for the centre. Alternatively, this space can be converted into a screen for local children to watch movies.Safmarine has, over the past few years, started working with socially responsive industrial designers to come up with design ideas that are sustainable and environmentally sound.The current average investment per project is around R500 000 (US $60 500), but this amount will vary according to the size and scale of the project.Winning design ideasWhile Containers in the Community has won numerous shipping industry awards in the past, it has more recently caught the attention of the design community.‘Sport in a box’ is one of 12 contenders in the running for the 2011/2012 AfriSam/SAIA Award for Sustainable Architecture. The winner will be announced in October 2012.According to AfriSam, a construction materials company, the awards are aimed at recognising outstanding achievement in sustainable architecture. Their partner in the initiative, SAIA, the South African Institute of Architects, is the industry authority. The awards programme supports SAIA’s goals of recognising and promoting excellence in architecture, and creating public awareness and debate on architectural issues.“We are delighted that Safmarine’s shipping containers, which spend many years at sea carrying cargo from one end of the globe to the other, are increasingly becoming a source of inspiration for talented architects and designers around the world,” said Safmarine’s Debbie Owen.“The recent contribution made by the design and architectural community in helping us to creatively and sustainably convert these boxes, has been an important one and recognition – such as with the shortlisting for the Afrisam/SAIA Sustainable Architecture Award – is important as the shipping container, and its contribution to our society, is now being viewed in a more holistic manner.”Community designersBesides acquiring the services of talented designers, Containers in the Community also puts the challenge to members of the community. In 2011 Safmarine and food and clothing retailer Woolworths launched a design competition where contestants were required to create a classroom for the grade R pupils of Vissershok Primary School near Durbanville, also in the Western Cape, using a container.A concept by Marshaan Brink, a pupil at Stellenberg High School, took top honours, and he had the opportunity to work with professional designers and architects and see his idea come to life. Brink was present when the brightly painted classroom was handed over to the pupils.Containers in the Community projects have also been implemented in Brazil, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Liberia and Tanzania.last_img read more

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Microsoft Still Banning Rivals From Its Conference, Just More Quietly

first_imgTags:#Amazon#Google#Microsoft#microsoft partners#Partner Conference#Salesforce.com#VMware#Worldwide Partner Conference#WPC#wpc 2014 Related Posts jodi mardesich 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…center_img Microsoft was publicly shamed when it disallowed rival partners like Amazon from participating in the company’s upcoming Worldwide Partner Conference in July. Despite the backlash, Microsoft has not changed its position—though it has changed what the public can see.Microsoft scrubbed the conference website completely. It originally listed four competitors, whose employees were not allowed to register, but those names are now gone.When asked if Microsoft had a change of heart and was allowing everyone to attend the conference, a Microsoft spokesperson said Microsoft is removing all the competitors from the main WPC page and including them in the registration process. “All of the companies from yesterday are still on the list, Microsoft just decided to move them all from the main page into the registration process.”‘Moving them into the registration process’ sounded unclear, so I asked the Microsoft spokesperson to clarify. “The same companies listed yesterday are not able to attend,” she said. Moving them into the registration process presumably means during registration, they’ll be screened, just a bit more privately.Microsoft customers are undoubtedly using products from Google, Amazon, Salesforce.com, and VMware, just as they are using products from other competitors that haven’t been barred from attending. Customers are usually happier when products work well together. This isn’t the open source world, but vendor lock-in isn’t popular outside of open source, either.Lead image courtesy of Microsoft A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hostinglast_img read more

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BSNL unveils Bharat Phone with e-governance apps

first_imgIndian state-owned telecommunications company Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) recently unveiled a low-cost version of its smartphone, with e-governance applications for the common man, as per IANS reports.Branded as ‘Bharat phone’, the mobile device sports a three-inch large screen display with provision for dual SIM card and come with a price tag of Rs 1,099.”The low-cost mobile device will alter the Indian feature phone industry as it has been designed especially for e-governance applications and optimised for internet access to empower common man,” BSNL chairman R.K. Upadhyay said.Visiting Mauritius President Rajkeshwar Purryag, who is city since Wednesday, was present on the occasion with Karnataka Governor H.R. Bhardwaj and state Higher Education Minister R.V. Deshpande.Designed and developed by Pantel Technologies Ltd, a pioneer in the low-cost tablet PC market, the voicephone’s large screen and proprietary Java operating system are suited for other user applications such as mobile banking, tele-healthcare delivery and streaming data delivery.”As the phone is pre-bundled with attractive voice plan, the mobile handset offers common man the power of internet access at an affordable price and will benefit a wide section of society,” Upadhyay said.According to Pantel managing director Vijender Singh, the phone has facility to browse, e-mail, to check Facebook and download music, video and Java games.”Besides facility for dual SIM card, the phone is equipped with 1.3 mega pixel rear camera, Bluetooth for quick sharing of files, a lithium-ion battery with eight-hour charge and 15 days standby, 64MB random access memeory (RAM) and 64MB of internal storage, SMS scheduler, multimedia gaming and mobile tracker,” Singh saidadvertisementlast_img read more

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