Premier League round-up: Falcao strikes but Man United are held by Aston Villa

first_img Radamel Falcao celebrates Manchester United were denied their seventh win in a row as Aston Villa doggedly held on for a 1-1 draw at Villa Park, despite playing 25 minutes with ten men.A share of the spoils now means the Red Devils sit third in the Premier League, six points behind Chelsea, who play on Monday, and Man City.The Villans had nabbed a shock lead with 18 minutes on the clock as Christian Benteke took down a free-kick and, after twisting and turning, placed a curled left-foot shot into the top corner with David De Gea stationary.Moments into the second period Benteke nearly scored again but this time Spanish ace De Gea was able to tip his header over the bar.Robin van Persie was superbly denied at the opposite end by Brad Guzan as the Red Devils attempted to equalise but it was loan star Radamel Falcao who did get them level as he planted a free header past the American glovesman for his second of the season.Villa were reduced to ten men after 65 minutes when Gabriel Agbonlahor was adjudged to have gone in late on ex-team-mate Ashley Young, but Paul Lambert’s side did enough to hang on and could even have won with a couple of good late chances.Tottenham moved themselves up to sixth in the Premier League as they beat Burnley 2-1 in a thrilling encounter full of skill, pace and guile.Harry Kane is the man of the moment at White Hart Lane and he headed home Nacer Chadli’s cross after 22 minutes to give the hosts the lead.But a bright and bustling Burnley side were back on level terms when Ashley Barnes’ brilliant curled strike left Hugo Lloris with no chance.And Spurs fans were then given a reminder of why they spent £30million on Erik Lamela as he whipped in a winner which may just have made them think Gareth Bale was back in a Lilywhite shirt. The Argentine cut in from the right flank and bent in a dipping strike which evaded the gloves of Tom Heaton, who was at full stretch.Southampton ended a horrendous run of form as they put three unanswered goals past Everton at St Mary’s.The Saints were without a win in six going into the game but put a smile on boss Ronald Koeman’s face as a James Ward-Prowse corner crossed the line after hitting Toffees striker Romelu Lukaku, although Jose Fonte did attempt to claim it.Graziano Pelle doubled their tally when he fired home from a Shane Long knockdown and Maya Yoshida shouldered in a Steven Davis cross as the hosts stopped the rot and left Everton down in tenth.West Ham made light work of rock bottom Leicester City at Upton Park to ensure the remain in the top four.Foxes left-back Paul Konchesky, on his return to Upton Park, handed Andy Carroll a huge gift as his misjudged backpass fell straight to the England man and, after rampage towards goal, he showed a cool head to take on the last defender and then deftly clip his shot over Ben Hamer and into the back of the net.Carroll’s afternoon nearly took a turn for the worse as he appeared to twist his ankle before careering into the hoardings in east London but he managed to avoid serious injury, playing the full 90 minutes.And moments later the Hammers got their second of the afternoon as an audacious touch and shot from Stewart Downing outside the box saw Hamer’s net bulge again, sealing a 2-0 victory.Charlie Austin was again the hero for Queens Park Rangers as his hat-trick helped them beat West Brom 3-2 despite being 2-0 down after 20 minutes.Joleon Lescott’s first goal since September 2012 put the Baggies in front at Loftus Road and Silvestre Varela doubled their lead ten minutes later.An Austin penalty got the Super Hoops back into the game and four minutes into the second period he lashed a shot home to take the score to 2-2.And just minutes from the final whistle Austin powered home a magnificent header to give Harry Redknapp’s men all three points and take them up to 15th in the table.Elsewhere, Swansea City claimed a slim 1-0 win over Hull at the KC Stadium.The Jacks grabbed a fortunate opener as Jonjo Shelvey’s rifled strike deflected beyond Allan McGregor off Ki Sung-Yueng.In response Andrew Robertson hit the upright for the Tigers but Shelvey, attempting to ensure his name was on the scoresheet, hammered a shot into the post at the other end.But there were to be no other goals in the clash leaving Hull languishing in 19th position and putting Garry Monk’s Swans in eighth. 1last_img read more

Phillip Tobias dies

first_imgEmeritus Professor Phillip V Tobias, an acclaimed South African anthropologist, with a collection of fossil hominid skulls from east and southern Africa at the Fossil Laboratory of the University of the Witwatersrand. The skull and jawbone of the Taung Child, a famous specimen of Australopithecus africanus, are directly in front of him. (Image: MediaClubSouthAfrica.com. For more images, visit the image library) MEDIA CONTACTS • Prof. Andrew Crouch   Dean: Wits University science faculty  + 27 11 717 6011 RELATED ARTICLES • Rocking in the Cradle • Unearthing our human ancestors • World heritage in South Africa • Khoisan couple home at lastLucille Davie / City of JohannesburgOne of South Africa’s most distinguished scientists, Phillip Valentine Tobias, passed away on 7 June after a long illness.Tobias, professor emeritus of anatomy and human biology, and a respected palaeontologist at Wits University, was 86.“We extend our deepest sympathies to the friends and family of Professor Tobias, and those who knew him well,” the university said in a statement.President Jacob Zuma added his condolences, saying: “We have lost a renowned scientist, a scholar and a unique human being. Our country remains eternally proud of his work. On behalf of government and the people of South Africa, we extend our deepest condolences and may his soul rest in peace.”Tobias was born in Durban 1925, and was acknowledged worldwide as an expert in anatomy, human biology and evolution as well as the analysis of human fossils. He received as many as 18 honorary degrees from around the globe over the course of his career.Accolades awarded Tobias over the years range from the Order of Meritorious Service (gold class) and the Order of the Southern Cross of South Africa, to the Fellow of the Royal Society of London and the Charles Darwin Lifetime Achievement Award. The City of Johannesburg awarded him the Walter Sisulu Special Contribution Award in 2007.He taught some 10 000 students over his almost 50 years at Wits.“I like to think that I have had a moderately good impact on some of them [his students], and bless them, they’re always telling me this when I meet them in Edmonton in Canada, Sydney, Nairobi, Hong Kong, New York and Cambridge,” Tobias said in a 2009 interview with the City of Johannesburg.He said at the time that what made him tick was his love of people and humanity.“I was one of those strange professors who loved his students. By being available to them at all times to help them with their problems and with constructive, creative advice and trying to widen their horizons.”Although frail, up until recently, he drove himself to work on most days, where he had an office at the Wits Medical School. He was still active, answering emails, seeing visitors from all over the world, writing speeches and chapters or forewords for books, and seeing students who sought his advice.His personal assistant, Felicity Krowitz said in 2009: “He goes out of his way to assist anyone with anything. He is so sprightly, so on-the-ball intellectually. His memory is unbelievable.”60 years at WitsTobias had been at Wits for over 60 years – he graduated from the university in 1950. He had simultaneously been professor at the university in the fields of anatomy, palaeonanthropology and zoology. His other work included being dean, emeritus professor, honorary professorial research fellow and director of the Sterkfontein Research Unit.In his time at the university, he served as professor of anatomy and human biology and served as head of these departments until 1990.From 1980 to 1982 he served as dean of the faculty of medicine, and was honorary professor of palaeoanthropology and zoology.In 1994 he was made professor emeritus of anatomy and human biology and honorary professorial research fellow in anatomical sciences. All of these positions he held until his death.Tobias had also served as visiting professor at the universities of Pennsylvania, Florence, Cornell and Vienna, among others.As a world authority in palaeoanthropology, he has authored over 1 000 publications, including 40 books and monographs and over 90 chapters in books in anatomy and palaeoanthropology and other areas.In 2005 he published the first part of his autobiography, Into the Past, a memoir. He was working on the second part when he died.His has written biographies of anthropologists and books on the philosophy and history of science, all the while being nominated for a Nobel Prize three times.Excavations at SterkfonteinTobias had supervised excavations at Sterkfontein for the past 46 years, since 1966, where over 600 fossil hominids have been recovered, and where over a third of all known early hominid fossils have been found.His other excavations were at other major fossil sites like Taung in the North West province, Makapansgat in Limpopo, and sites in Tanzania and Kenya.“Tobias made the Wits’ department of anatomy (as it was then called) a major world centre of palaeoanthropological research and teaching,” said Prof Beverley Kramer.Kramer is the professor of anatomy at the school of anatomical sciences at the university. She was speaking at the opening of an exhibition on Tobias at the Adler Museum of Medicine, in May 2008.“Phillip brought great acclaim, not only to the department, but also to the faculty of health sciences and to his university.”Wits added to its statement by saying Tobias was internationally renowned for his scholarship and dedication to a better understanding of the origin, behaviour and survival of humanity.“For his many major scholarly contributions to palaeoanthropology, anatomy, human biology, cultural anthropology, the evolution of the brain, cytogenetics and the history and philosophy of science.”Over the years Tobias had been offered posts around the world, but he always turned them down, happy to stay at his alma mater, from which he obtained five degrees.“Unlike many of his contemporaries who left South Africa in the 1950s, Phillip stayed on and committed himself to maintaining high standards of scholarship and personal integrity during the difficult years,” said Nobel laureate Sydney Brenner, in the foreword to Into the Past, a memoir.Opposed injusticesTobias opposed the injustices of apartheid, both as a student and as a lecturer at Wits. He was president of the non-racial National Union of South African Students, which opposed segregated education. He also participated in protests against the Group Areas Act, the Suppression of Communism Act, the Population Registration Act and other oppressive laws.Together with his colleagues, he complained to the South African Medical Council regarding the treatment of Steve Biko, who died in police custody in 1977.“Tobias was renowned for his sustained campaign against racism and for upholding and fighting for human rights and freedoms,” said the university’s statement.“In recent years he publicly protested against xenophobia, government’s initial HIV/Aids policies and its delay in granting the Dalai Lama a visa to enter South Africa.”He loved reading whodunits, with his favourite authors being PD James, Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, Dorothy Allingham and Kathy Reichs. Classical music was his genre of choice, especially choral music. He used to go to his home town of Durban twice a year for his holidays, enjoying relaxing at the sea.“People, conversation, chocolates and watching the waves at the seashore,” was how Tobias described his holidays in 2009.last_img read more

Virgin video about how thunderstorms impact travel

first_imgVirgin Australia has released a video explaining how storms can affect flying operations, as the summer storm season hits Australia.Virgin Australia Meteorologist Manfred Greitschus said that “thunderstorms are a very significant issue for airlines and can be very dangerous weather events.“Depending on the severity of the storm, it has the potential to influence the way we plan flights to avoid flying through any dangerous storm cells.“When thunderstorms are producing lightning within eight kilometers of an airport, we need to shut down operations on the ramp and this can cause delayed or canceled flights,” Mr. Greitschus said.General Manager, Network Operations Andrew Lillyman added that major weather events like thunderstorms can have a big impact on airline’s flying schedules.“When there is a severe thunderstorm at an airport, we will receive information about the reduced amount of flights we’ve been approved to operate in and out of the airport.”“The team then work hard on reallocating passengers on this reduced schedule to get guests to their destinations as quickly as we can.“We understand that cancellations and delays are very frustrating but we want guests to know that their safety is most important to us. We’re hoping these videos will also provide the public with some information about what happens behind the scenes and why we make the decisions we do,” Mr Lillyman said.last_img read more

Call for crackdown on killer lithium batteries

first_imgThe potential impact of a lithium battery fire. Photo: FAA International carriers are moving to crack down on potentially deadly lithium-ion batteries dispatched by rogue manufacturers.Consumer demand for lithium batteries is growing by 17 percent annually but the International Air transport Association warns that the number of incidents involving counterfeit or undeclared batteries from unscrupulous manufactures has also risen.READ: FAA chief confirms MAX grounding will stretch into 2020Lithium batteries are a fire risk and a danger to aircraft if not handled properly.Watch this sobering US Federal Aviation Administration video of a simulated aircraft fire caused by lithium batteries: The International Air Transport Association wants governments to crack down on manufacturers of counterfeit batteries as well as mislabelled and non-compliant shipments.It is teaming Global Shippers Forum (GSF), the International Federation of Freight Forwarders Associations (FIATA) and the International Air Cargo Association (TIACA) to boost efforts on the issue.The four organizations have urged governments to introduce significant fines and penalties for those who try to circumvent the rules about the transport of lithium batteries.They argue abuses of dangerous goods shipping regulations put passenger and aircraft safety at risk and should be criminalized.The campaign includes a new incident reporting and alert system for airlines as well as an industry awareness campaign on the dangers of shipping dodgy lithium batteries.It also supports an initiative presented to the International Civil Aviation Organization that would see co-operation between aviation security, manufacturing standards, customs and consumer protection agencies.“Dangerous goods, including lithium batteries, are safe to transport if managed according to international regulations and standard,’’ said IATA senior vice president airport, passenger, cargo and security Nick Careen.“But we are seeing an increase in the number of incidents in which rogue shippers are not complying. The industry is uniting to raise awareness of the need to comply.“This includes the launching of an incident reporting tool so that information on rogue shippers is shared. And we are asking governments to get much tougher with fines and penalties”last_img read more

Will My Job Be There After Surgery?

first_imgOriginally posted on HR Box. Q. I’ve received a serious medical diagnosis that’s going to require surgery and a lengthy two month recovery. Luckily, the company where I’ve worked for two years offers good insurance; but because we’re small (fewer than 50 employees) they’re not required through the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to offer medical leave and hold my job while I’m gone.So now I’m scared not just about getting through the surgery but also about whether I’m going to have a job after it’s over. How should I approach my employer about the situation?A. I’m sorry about your diagnosis. Let’s look at how we can improve your chances of keeping your job after you recover.Like so many things in life, I think the best approach would be honesty and goodwill. What would that look like?First, I would talk to your employer and let them know what’s going on; keep it big-picture and drama-free. For instance you could say something like “I just found I need to have surgery and is going to take two months to recover”.Clearly acknowledge that you know the company is not required to allow you to go on medical leave and much less to keep your job open. Then make a case for why you hope that they still consider doing so in your situation.This is where you need to think of every business reason why it’s a good idea to keep your job open until you return. For example you can remind them of the investment the company has already made in you, point out upcoming projects for which your skill set is a perfect fit. Highlight the cost and hassle of recruiting for your replacement. Suggest which parts of your job could be transferred to a temp.If they seem receptive, give as much detail as you feel comfortable regarding your health. For example, when the surgery scheduled, what the recovery might look like, how long it might take, whether you might be able to work part-time from home.Lastly, if they agree to keep your job open for you, it will likely be without pay. Just make sure they keep you on the payroll and enrolled in health insurance, even if you have to send them a check for your part of the premium.A good outcome for both your surgery and your job is quite possible. Keeping fingers crossed.last_img read more

How Hunch Built a Data-Crunching Monster

first_imgThey’d evaluated more conventional technologies like Hadoop, but the key requirement they couldn’t achieve in their tests was low latency. They’re running on a graph with over 30 billion edges, with multiple iterations to spread nodes’ influence to distant neighbors and achieve a steady state, a bit like PageRank. This has to be extremely responsive to new users inputting their information, so they have to re-run the calculations frequently, and none of the systems they looked at could deliver the results at a speed that was acceptable. Hunch has really interesting problems. They collect a lot of data from a lot of users, and once someone creates a profile they need to quickly deliver useful recommendations across a wide range of topics. This means running a sophisticated analysis on a massive data set, all to a strict deadline. Nobody else is doing anything this ambitious with recommendation engines, so I sat down with their co-founder and CTO Matt Gattis to find out how they pulled it off. Tags:#hack#Interviews pete warden When Matt first told me about his design decisions, I have to admit I was surprised that he was apparently swimming against the tide by working within a single uber-machine rather than using an army of dumb boxes, but as he explained their requirements it all started to make sense. With more and more companies facing similar latency issues, I wonder if the pendulum is swinging back towards parallelism across a system bus rather than a network? Even with their software and hardware architecture in place, there were still obstacles to overcome. Their monster server uses CentOS Linux, but very few people are running memory-intensive applications on machines with so much RAM, so they ran into performance problems. For example, by default the kernel will start paging out to disk once the memory is about 60% full, which left them with only about 150 GB of RAM available before swapping kicked in and performance cratered. There’s not much documentation available around these parameters, so the team ended up scouring the kernel source to understand how it worked before they could produce a set hand-tuned for TasteGraph’s needs. 7 Types of Video that will Make a Massive Impac… The other part of the puzzle was the software they needed to actually implement the processing. They looked at a series of open-source graph databases, but ran into problems with all of them when they tried scaling up to 30 billion edge networks. Continuing their contrarian approach, they wrote their own engine from the ground up in C, internally codenamed TasteGraph. The system caches the entire graph in memory, with rolling processes re-running the graph calculations repeatedly, and the end-results cached on multiple external machines. They have even recoded some of their inner loops in assembler, since they spend a lot of their cycles running calculations on large matrices and even the specialized linear algebra libraries they use don’t deliver the performance they need.center_img How to Write a Welcome Email to New Employees? Growing Phone Scams: 5 Tips To Avoid The first thing he brought up was hardware costs, casually mentioning that they’d looked into getting a server with one terabyte of RAM from Dell! That immediately piqued my interest, because the Google-popularized trend has been towards throwing an army of cheap commodity servers at big data problems, rather than scaling vertically with a single monstrously powerful machine. It turns out their whole approach is based around parallelism within a single box, and they had some interesting reasons for making that choice. They determined that the key bottleneck was network bandwidth, which led them towards housing all of their data processing within a single machine. It’s much faster to share information across an internal system bus than to send it across even a fast network, so with their need for frequent communication between the parallel tasks, a monster server made sense. As it happens they decided against the $100,000 one terabyte server, and went for one with a still-impressive 256 GB of RAM, 48 cores and SSD drives. Why You Love Online Quizzes Related Posts last_img read more

Creativity as a Factor of SSD Performance

first_imgHow would you measure your comfort, user experience, smoothness, and happiness while producing music?Intel® Optane™ SSDs open a full horizon of new application usages and use cases. But how would you translate your device-level performance into an application performance improvement? And how would that be translated into the user experience improvements — the ultimate goal of any technology progress? Well, that’s a question I ask myself while evaluating new technologies. In most conditions that can be measured by benchmarks, pure comparing scores or runtime could mean an advantage of one technology over another one. In certain cases that can be just tangible, such as how would you measure the smoothness of your experience or how would you score your feelings? Well that’s more difficult, as everyone can have a different perspective. In this blog I’ll attempt to make some formal assessment of those feelings based on the recent story. If you haven’t had a chance to see Intel’s interview with top electronic music and film composer, BT, find a moment now. It’s worth it!BT is one of the most innovative musicians who utilizes newest technologies in his music production and creates his own. His work for movie scoring is impressive (The Fast and the Furious, Solace, Stealth), and uses the latest advantages of massively sampled orchestration available in real-time. While sampling has existed for years, the way he pushes it to the limits with hybrid orchestra approach and granular synthesis is quite remarkable.As a user of Intel® SSDs 750-series, he was excited by NVMe SSDs and the performance advantages PCIe interface brings into that. Combining multiple SSDs in the RAID volume allows him to improve the overall bandwidth and, of course, expand the capacity. That’s a great deal, and RAID capability is built in all operating systems today. However, RAID can’t improve the access latency. No matter how many drives you combine together, the access latency would represent the worst drive in the array. That means it’s always equal or higher than a standalone SSD latency. There is a class of applications that can’t keep up scaling the performance by only SSD bandwidth improvements and that story is a demonstration on that. Device latency is one of those requirements for the audio sample playback performance improvements.A complete orchestra is sampled into terabytes of a sample data with a playback of up to 3,000 tracks at a time. Available DRAM is only capable for the small pieces of those sounds (attacks), while the body of the sound is streamed directly from storage. For real-time playback, it is critical all data processing is completed within an audio buffer time — say 5ms, which is common latency these days. Otherwise the user will experience audio drops and other artifacts, including fatal interruptions. This is the case where scaling storage bandwidth can’t help to solve the problem.Let’s look at the facts. A single sample is a contiguous piece of a data. Let’s assume each sample is running at 48kHz * 32bits Stereo, which is translated into 0.37 MB/s bandwidth. You would expect that with PCIe SSD, which as an example can read data sequentially at 2.5GB/s, you can play ~7M samples at a time (2.5*1024*1024/0.37). Why would I ever need faster storage if this number far exceeds any real use case? Well, the conclusion is wrong. Sample libraries are based on the thousands of samples played at a time. Different layering, microphone position, and round robin sample rotation are multiplying that by the order of magnitude. Also, streaming of many sequential fragments at a time causes I/O randomization naturally. Now, a workload is randomized with a lowest denominator, which is an application request size or even file system sector size in a common case. With that the storage workload is no longer sequential and must be measured in the IOPS form on a small block size. This is fully random I/O condition for the device-level perspective and it’s distributed across full span of sample library with no hot area.Here we came to the point where NAND-based SSD performance has significant variation based on workload parameters. That’s easier for a drive to run a single threaded sequential workload than a random one or even than many parallel sequential. Of course, the difference is not as noticeable as with hard drives, where you must physically move a head, which has significant latency impact on results and unbelievable performance degradation. But the performance impact is meaningful, too. The root cause is in the NAND architecture, which consists of sectors (minimal read size), pages (# of sectors, determines minimal write size) and erase block size (# of pages, minimal erase size). Combined with a specific NAND-based SSD acceleration on aggregating sequential I/O into a bigger transfer size, we see performance improvements in sequential I/O, which are not available for Random small block I/O.A 3D XPoint™ memory cell solves that problem. It’s cache line addressable by the architecture, requires no erase cycle before write, and significantly lowers access time compared to NAND. Implemented on a block device, Intel Optane™ SSDs are optimized for a low latency and high IOPS performance, especially on low queue depth. This directly correlates with an exceptional quality of service, which represents max latency and latency distribution. As a consequence of that, Optane SSD is capable of delivering similar performance no matter the workload — random vs. sequential or read vs. write.Let’s run some tests to visualize that. I’ll be running this experiment on Microsoft Windows 10. You may expect Linux or OS X charts similar or better, but as we’re evaluating an environment similar to the one installed in BT’s studio, I’ll try to match it here.Configuration: Asus X299-Deluxe, Core i7-7820X, 32GB DRAM, Intel SSD 750 Series 1.2TB, Intel Optane 900p. You may download all FIO configuration scripts from my repository: www.github.com/intel/fiovisualizerNAND-based SSD is in the sustained performance state before every run. Optane SSD doesn’t have this side effect and delivers performance right away. As you see on charts, I’m only considering a scenario of the I/O randomization, and the overall delta in absolute SSD performance under different conditions. I’m leaving other workloads to the side, which are evaluated thoroughly by a third party such as Storage Review, Anandtech, PC Perspective, and others. All of the simulated workloads are stressful for a SSD, in regards of getting to the maximum performance of the device by pushing many I/Os. Intel Optane SSD leads not only on the absolute numbers, but also on the performance variability between workloads. In a real application scenario, such as in the story above, that means stable and predictable performance for a sample playback that doesn’t change its characteristics based on the number of samples, their sizes, the way they are played or any other activities while doing that, such as multitrack record. You may call it “a performance budget” you can split between workloads without sacrificing overall performance.For a musician that means Optane delivers a smooth experience without audio drops, even at peak demands. That also means no need for the offline rendering, channel freezing and sub mixdowns, which equals more time for being creative and unique.last_img read more