SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.–The decision was not all that surprising, but the timing of it couldn’t have worked out better.When Bruce Bochy announced Monday that the 2019 season will be his last as the Giants manager, it saved the future Hall of Famer from a season of speculation surrounding his job security.It also gave Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi a head start in his quest to find the franchise’s 37th manager.Shortly after Bochy revealed his plans, Giants CEO Larry Baer said …
What happened to a Christian on his journey to a PhD is shocking and shameful, but his situation was far from unique.Corey Miller finally decided to tell his story. On his path to a PhD in philosophy, he was blocked, persecuted, censored and shamed repeatedly. Why? Because he couldn’t fulfill the academic requirements? No. He titles his article in The College Fix, “I was forced out of my PhD program because of my open faith in Jesus Christ. Here’s my story.” Proceeding from undergrad to PhD as a Christian was a continual battle. Here are some of types of censorship and persecution he endured:Told to shut up from sharing his Christian views in a freshman class, and given an F.Received prank calls at 3 in the morning from classmates mocking his faith.Called schizophrenic and delusional by his psychology professor.Dropped by an atheist grad advisor and forbidden to proceed in his PhD studies.As an adjunct professor, was threatened by professors and students.*Forced to go overseas to complete his PhD.“Following these experiences as an undergrad, grad, and professor, I realized how hostile universities can be at all layers of strata if you don’t believe the right doctrines. Higher education has become so thoroughly secularized that an alternate viewpoint is foreign, unwelcome, attacked and pushed out. Ultimately I finished my PhD in philosophical theology from the University of Aberdeen in Scotland in 2014.”*He was exonerated from accusations by students and professors with help from the ADF (Alliance Defending Freedom), but the persecution continued.The censors were relentless. When Miller was outspoken about his faith, he was censored. When he was secretive about his faith, he was outed and censored. When he tried the Trojan Horse approach (enter academia and become one of them), he was outed and censored. It had nothing to do with his qualifications. The reason was the intolerant, profoundly anti-Christian bias in academia:Surveys often show the ratio of liberal to conservative professors for those over age 65 preparing to retire is 12:1. For the new scholars coming in under age 36 it is 23:1. In some departments it is literally 70:1. There is a light at the end of the tunnel and it is an oncoming train.Marxists, LGBT activists, and leftists get a free pass to say anything they want on most college campuses. Christians, however, face harassment, persecution and censorship. Given his experience, Miller decided to do something about it.Instead of a Trojan Horse approach, today I fight with a full frontal assault. Shortly after earning my PhD I became president and CEO of Ratio Christi: Campus Apologetics Alliance.Miller sees the situation as a fight, not just for freedom to speak up for Christian faith on college campuses, but to preserve the very existence of a Christian voice there. It’s a fight for our culture and civilization as well, he warns.We believe not only in defending the faith, but also in defending the ability to defend the faith, whether it is speech codes, speech zones, denial of campus funds, or variant all-comers policies where we cannot get clubs approved if we insist on our leaders being Christians.We’ve been involved in at least 17 cases of legal proceedings, won a federal victory at one university and recently won another this month.Slaughtering, Silencing, and Censoring the Darwin SkepticsOne of our contributing writers, Jerry Bergman, alerted the editor of CEH about Miller’s story that was published May 22. Dr Bergman knows a lot about persecution of Christians and creationists in academia. For 30 years, he has gathered case studies similar to Miller’s, and has published them in books and articles. His first major book on this subject, Slaughter of the Dissidents: The Shocking Truth About Killing the Careers of Darwin Doubters (2008, 475 pages), with 45 five-star reviews on Amazon, shocked readers with accounts of more than ten famous persons who suffered the unfairness and censure of Darwinists in academia and the press.As the university goes, so goes the culture. The university is the most influential institution in western civilization. From it come our doctors, lawyers, political leaders, journalists, artists, k-12 educators and even future professors. Stalin once said “ideas are more powerful than weapons. We don’t allow our enemies to have weapons. Why should we let them have ideas?” And Abraham Lincoln said, “the philosophy in the classroom in one generation will be the philosophy of government in the next.” —Corey MillerBergman’s second book, Silencing the Darwin Skeptics: The War Against Theists (2012, 385 pages) added five more lengthy accounts of additional victims, plus short accounts of 15 more. In addition, this book called out specific institutions for persistent violations of rights of “Darwin skeptics”— a term broader than just Christians, creationists or theists. Darwin skeptics include anyone who doubts the secular consensus that Darwinian evolution is capable of explaining the world and the universe. Bergman also shows why appeals to the typical legal organizations that are supposed to protect our rights (ACLU, NEA, and AAUP) usually fail, because those organizations are just as hostile as the Darwinists in academia, as are the courts. Most interesting in this book are discussions of the tactics these totalitarians use to ridicule and silence those who refuse to bow the knee to St. Darwin. Bergman compares these tactics to those used by the Nazis.“Christians largely founded the university as a prominent feature of western civilization. But today we fight for our right to exist on the campus. The powers of secularism don’t lose any sleep over Christian marginalization. But Christians who sleep rather than fight for our right sacrifice not only our voice, but that of western civilization.” —Corey MillerThe third book in the series, Censoring the Darwin Skeptics: How Belief in Evolution Is Enforced by Eliminating Dissidents (2018, 495 pages), contains all new material, providing a strong capstone to the whole trilogy. Eight new case studies are presented in detail, but before them, Bergman reveals the tactics of the censors. For ten chapters, he describes pervasive censorship against Darwin doubters in our society and how the perpetrators do it everywhere, using tactics both subtle and blatant. For instance, bookstores and libraries hide intelligent design books written by PhD scientists in the religion section, but showcase Darwinist books by atheists like Richard Dawkins in the science section. Reporters grab boilerplate pro-Darwin, anti-creationist text for their stories, and rely on Darwinist talking points whenever discussing views skeptical of Darwinism. Schools give failing grades and even oust students who try to present non-Darwinian material in class. Universities deny grants, research results and internet access to Darwin skeptics. State legislatures deny accreditation to institutions wanting to teach creation or ID. Peer reviewers refuse to publish results critical of Darwin (that tactic and pre-censorship of textbooks ensures that students and researchers never even get exposed to alternate ideas). With all this disturbing documentation, Bergman also asks, “Is theistic evolution a solution?” The answer, surprisingly, is “No.” The Darwin-only dogmatists are just as hostile to compromisers!The author of the New Testament letter to the Hebrews said, “In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood” (Hebrews 12:4). Could it come to that? One of the suspects in the Colorado school shooting May 8 hated Christians and President Trump, WND reported but praised Obama. His accomplice was transitioning from female to male, says the NY Times. This is not the first deadly attack in America motivated by anti-Christian hate, nor will it likely be the last.The wealth of referenced documentation Dr Bergman has provided in these three large volumes should be a call to arms. Our society prides itself on free speech, free expression, and freedom of conscience. Any student or employee who meets the requirements and passes the tests should be respected, but when it comes to evolution, only one view is allowed. Darwinists are rigid totalitarians. Students are not allowed to question Darwinism and the scientific materialism it entails, and if they do, the consequences to their careers and reputations can be dire. Bergman describes how David Coppedge was accused of “harassment” at JPL for merely sharing material on intelligent design with friendly co-workers. For that infraction, he was demoted, threatened and eventually fired despite a 14-year good work record. Defending himself in court, even with ADF’s help, cost him tens of thousands of dollars of his own money, and close to a million dollars in lost income he would have earned before his planned retirement. A liberal judge ruled against him with no explanation, and then ordered Coppedge to pay JPL’s court costs of $51,000. Out of work and facing cancer surgery, he had no choice but to drop his right of appeal in exchange for not having to pay the court costs (as if JPL’s well-paid lawyers and international legal team needed the money). “The Coppedge case illustrates with gut-wrenching clarity,” Bergman writes, “the behind-the-scenes deceit and plotting we have similarly observed while reviewing many of the cases presented in this trilogy” (p. 371).Get these books, especially the most recent one, Censoring the Darwin Skeptics. Know what the Darwin doubters are up against. The same tactics continue today against Darwin skeptics and against our entire cultural history, founded as it was on the self-evident principle that we are “created equal,” and “endowed by our Creator” with unalienable rights. But like the censors in 1984, Darwinians rewrite history in their own terms, blotting out the memory of great scientists opposing Darwinism, and using every shenanigan they can to prevent impressionable students from hearing alternatives. Empowered by unions, lawyers, courts, the press, journals, professors and even the government sometimes, the totalitarian Darwinist empire seems impregnable. The task of speaking out seems daunting. While we have some avenues remaining to fight (like the internet, with CEH as an example), we must take advantage of them. Would that more had Corey Miller’s spirit that this is no longer time for a Trojan Horse approach; it is time for a full frontal assault. 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An Emirates A380 AIRLINES often crow about having the world’s longest flights but Emirates is trumpeting its newest Airbus A380 destination as the world’s shortest for the superjumbo.The Dubai-based carrier will upgrade one of its nine daily flights between Dubai and Doha to an A380 service from December 1 on what is the 45th A380 route for the airline and the shortest for the aircraft at just over 235 miles (379kms) each way.The airline justified using the long-range superjumbo on the short route by saying demand for Doha had been steadily increasing to the point it had carried more than 700,000 passengers between the cities so far this year.“The upgrade to the A380 will provide Emirates the increased ability to serve growing demand for travel out of Doha,’’ it said. “The double-decker has also proved tremendously popular with customers, and the upcoming service in December will give travellers from Qatar the chance to experience Emirates’ award-winning A380 onboard product and service to Dubai and seamless A380 journeys to some of Emirates most popular destinations.’’The gulf carrier has timed the flights so that travellers will have connections of less than four hours to popular destinations such as London Heathrow, New York, Paris and Rome.The superjumbos on the route will be in a three-class configuration with 429 seats in economy, 76 flat-bed seats in business and 14 first-class suites. They will also come equipped with the airline’s renowned in-flight bar and entertainment system, althoughit willl be a choice between a quick drink or a short program on a flight lasting about an hour.Emirates is the world’s biggest operator of A380s with 85 in service and 57 on order and competes with Abu Dhabi-based Etihad and Doha-based Qatar. It recently upgraded its business class product and bar and is working on a new first class product.Emirates president Tim Clark, who says the aircraft works well for airline and is popular with customers, recently warned that the world would need more A380s to cope with capacity problems at airports.Read Sir Tim’s comments.Airbus announced earlier this year that it will more than halve production of the superjumbo from the current 2.5 per month to one a month because of lacklustre demand.But Airbus chief executive Tom Enders, speaking at an event to celebrate the manufacturer’s 10,000th aircraft delivery, predicted there would still be a demand for the A380 “for many years to come”.
As the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos begins this week, South Africa will present a positive message of robust growth for the country, including details of the nine-point plan for economic recovery first disclosed in the 2015 State of the Nation address.A nine-point plan for economic recovery in South Africa forms part of the key message to the rest of the world at the WEF in Davos, Switzerland, taking place between 20 and 23 January 2016. (Image: Brand South Africa)In February 2015, in his State of the Nation address for the year, President Jacob Zuma unveiled a nine-point plan for economic recovery and growth in South Africa. During the course of the year, progress reports from the various government departments detailing the development of the plan were presented.Now, these reports will form part of South Africa’s key message to the rest of the world at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland. The annual international gathering is taking place between 20 and 23 January this year. The overriding message that South Africa wants to convey to thousands of business, finance and government leaders from around the world is that the country is open for business for manufacturing, investment and trade.The theme in Davos this year is “Mastering the Fourth Industrial Revolution”, in an atmosphere of an increasingly challenging global economy.South Africa is determined to show the world that the country is serious about meeting those challenges, while sustaining a strong economic relationship with the rest of the world.As a country, it wants to achieve the critical targets set by its National Development Plan (NDP), namely: attaining a real gross domestic product growth of 5%, a crucial reduction of the unemployment rate from 25% to 6%, and the reduction of income inequality. These are all to be achieved by the year 2030.Resolving the energy challengeMuch has been happening in the energy sector. In December 2015, the Department of Energy published a determination on the nuclear programme, whereby 9 600 megawatts (MW) should be generated from nuclear energy.The Medupi Power Station Unit 6 went online in August 2015, producing an additional 794MW to the total installed grid capacity of 45 000MW.The R2-billion Coega Wind Farm project was officially opened in September 2015.Eskom has signed short-term power purchase agreements to secure additional electricity during peak periods, while a further 800MW will be added to the grid through co-generation.Energy-efficiency programmes have resulted in savings of 450MW.Various renewable energy projects under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) currently supply 1 800MW to the grid.In October 2015, the minister of energy announced the 10 preferred bidders in the small projects REIPPPP.The department’s State of Renewable Energy in South Africa report revealed that the renewables sector had attracted R192.6-billion in investment, had contributed more than 109 000 construction jobs and had cut the equivalent of 4.4 million tons of carbon dioxide.Revitalising agriculture and the agro-processing value chainSimilarly, work has been ongoing in agriculture, with 43 agri-park sites identified by August and one agri-park already launched in North West. The programme aims to create 300 000 new small-scale producers and 145 000 new agro-processing jobs by 2020.The number of jobs in agriculture increased by 183 000 between 2014 and 2015, reaching a total of 891 000.Through the Agricultural Policy Action Plan, 24 162 hectares and the commodities on these were acquired, which were allocated to smallholder farmers.Fruit production for the year to date increased by R685-million, adding 1 868 jobs.Aquaculture growth over the last five years resulted in production increasing fivefold, to 20 000 tons. Growth between 2013 and 2014 was 25%, exceeding the average global growth rate of 7%, and contributing almost R3-billion to the national economy.Advancing beneficiation or adding value to our mineral wealthRegarding mining, draft amendments to South Africa’s Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act which would give provisions to stimulate local beneficiation, are currently with Parliament for consideration.The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is developing a Mineral Beneficiation Action Plan, which will be incorporated into the general national Industrial Action Policy Plan (Ipap).In addition, the country’s rich platinum deposits are being used in the development of hydrogen fuel cells.More effective implementation of a higher impact IpapThe seventh iteration of Ipap, which is aimed at raising the impact of government interventions to support industrial development and re-industrialise the country, was launched in May 2015.The DTI has designated 16 sectors, subsectors and products for local procurement, including transformers, power-line hardware and structures, steel conveyance pipes, mining and construction vehicles, and building and construction. In 645 infrastructure projects across the country valued at R3.6-trillion, the state procures these products from local manufacturers.The Black Industrialist Programme, designed to transform the manufacturing sector and unlock the potential of black entrepreneurs, secured initial funding of R1- billion from the DTI for the 2015 financial year. A further R23-billion from the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) will be made available for the programme over the next three financial years.The IDC established a new industries unit earlier in 2015, focused on supporting and funding the entire value chain of emerging innovative sectors.Rail and ship manufacturing is been revitalised with ships for the South African Navy and locomotives for long-haul rail transport being manufactured in South Africa.Encouraging private sector investmentA DTI investment clearing house was set up in August 2015 to support local and international investment. In addition to identifying process bottlenecks, removing administrative barriers and reducing regulatory inefficiencies, the function of the clearing house is also to set up norms and standards and improve turnaround times, as well as to co-ordinate and fast-track investment enquiries.In the past financial year, the DTI helped to facilitate an investment pipeline of more than R43-billion.As of August 2015, South Africa was handling 116 foreign direct investment (FDI) projects. South Africa registered an FDI inflow of R43.3-billion from January to July 2015, creating 5 037 jobs.Six industrial development zones around the country attracted R10-billion in investment during 2015.Regulations for special economic zones (SEZs) are being finalised. With an SEZ board and supporting secretariat being established and approved, the DTI is close to completing the feasibility studies for eight new SEZs.The Promotion and Protection of Investment Bill that clarifies investor protection and ensures more open foreign investment was tabled in Parliament in 2015.A feasibility study for an initiative aimed at supporting increased investment to meet the needs of the National Development Plan is currently in process.Moderating workplace conflictUnder the leadership of Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, a continuous and special dialogue between business and labour is under way to improve labour relations. Specialist research and exploration teams are currently working on the nature of labour disputes and on finding solutions to the issue of wage inequality.A consensus on a working definition of a national minimum wage has been reached at the National Economic Development and Labour Council.Unlocking the potential of SMMEs, co-operatives, and township and rural enterprisesThe Department of Small Business Development continues to pilot its informal sector support policy, including the provision of business training, grants and co- funding. The department’s partnership with municipalities is continuing to revamp factory and business premises infrastructure.The Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation has set up a unit to investigate late or non-payment of suppliers. And Minister Jeff Radebe, the minister in The Presidency responsible for planning, monitoring and evaluation, presented a comparative analysis of national departments between 2013 and 2014 that showed – despite delays in payment remaining a major problem – that there had been improvement in the average number of invoices paid within 30 days.Provincial departments for the same period also revealed an improvement of 5% in the average number of invoices paid within 30 days.State reform and boosting the role of state-owned companies; ICT infrastructure or broadband roll-out; water, sanitation; and transport infrastructureICTIn addition, work has been ongoing in getting the country connected. The government rolled out 41 351 kilometres of fibre optic cables for broadband coverage during January to August 2015.Telkom has a whole sale division, Openserve, that is aimed at facilitating the entry of new internet service providers, particularly black-owned companies.In line with stipulations by the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa’s universal service obligations, 623 schools around the country have been connected to the internet.The Universal Service and Access Agency of South Africa connectivity project is currently under way in the Vhembe and Gert Sibande districts.WaterIn October 2015, the Department of Water and Sanitation, together with Umgeni Water and the Ugu District Municipality, announced the completion of the Mhlabatshane Dam in Umzumbe in KwaZulu-Natal. It will provide about 100 000 people with potable water.Water was supplied to 19 119 households in the 27 priority district municipalities.In addition, 11 waste water treatment works have been refurbished.More than 75 projects involving the maintenance and upgrading of existing water infrastructure are under construction.The government is intervening to stop water leaks, which cost the country R7- billion a year. The Department of Water and Sanitation is training 15 000 artisans and plumbers to fix water leaks in their communities; the first 3 000 people were recruited during 2015/2016.Operation Phakisa, aimed at growing the ocean economy and other sectorsSmall harbour upgrades are being undertaken in Saldanha Bay, Struisbaai, Gansbaai, Gordon’s Bay and Lamberts Bay, in Western Cape.In addition, nine catalyst projects are in progress, and 10 fish farms have been supported. The industry has invested R305-million and the government R105-million and 521 new jobs have been created.Operation Phakisa has also resulted in decisions to expand the domestic shipbuilding sector and the development of Saldanha Bay as an oil and gas hub.A Mining Phakisa, aimed at replicating the ongoing success of the ocean economy plan in the mineral sector, was launched towards the end of 2015.Source: South African Government News AgencyWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.
Inside the Casa de Chocolate. Photo by geocacher TramossosGeocache Name:Hansel and Gretel e a Casa de Chocolate (GC468WD)Difficulty/Terrain Rating:5/3Why this is the Geocache of the Week:When I first saw this geocache, the thing that struck me was the incredible description! I didn’t understand any of it (I don’t speak Portuguese), but I could definitely see the time and effort that went into creating the story and images. From there, a quick look at the logs and the photos showed that this geocache was more than just a pretty description—the container itself is an elaborate puzzle box. Geocache owners that put this much effort into a geocache deserve to be recognized!What geocachers are saying:[translated as best I could from Portuguese]“I really enjoyed it, Falkon Eye congratulations, this was the best cache I’ve ever done.” – eduarda“Magnificent cache !! Certainly deserves all the praise it has received, and from us, a BIG FAVORITE POINT. Congratulations to the owner throughout their dedication to create this geocache.” – SACTeam“Very, very, very good! Shoe-in for (at least) the top 3. Congratulations to the owner on the GREAT accomplishment and thanks for giving us the pleasure of enjoying this MAGNIFICENT cache.” – avilescosPhotos:A lucky geocacher with the logbook. Photo by geocacher Lusitana PaixãoYou’ve got the box, now how do you get it open? Photo by geocacher NarsaThe beginning of this geocache’s page. SharePrint RelatedConcrete floats! — Betonschiff Redentin (GC15D8C) — Geocache of the WeekDecember 4, 2013In “Community”Started from the bottom, now we’re here. — Roof of the World (GC9A9E) — Geocache of the WeekMay 22, 2013In “Community”Karst Mountain Topography — Yangshuo – GE9 — Geocache of the WeekNovember 5, 2015In “Geocache of the Week” What’s the most elaborate geocache you’ve ever found? Tell us in the comments.Continue to explore some of the most engaging geocaches around the globe. Check out all the Geocaches of the Week on the Geocaching blog. If you would like to nominate a Geocache of the Week, just fill out this form. Thanks!Share with your Friends:More Português
Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces Gawain Morrison Tags:#Beacons#featured#Internet of Things#IoT#retail#top Whether customers feel good or bad about their experiences is ultimately underpinned by their emotions. This doesn’t matter what context they are in — every interaction is emotional.As consumers, our shopping experiences mean quite a lot to us. If we stand in ridiculously big queues or receive terrible customer service, we are most likely to stay far away from or never return to that store. On the other hand, however, if we are delighted with the store’s customer service, the product range or even the floor layout, we are most likely to continuously purchase and build a relationship with the brand. Thus it is how we feel about and interact with a brand that drives our consumer decisions.See also: How AI and autonomy may create a new era in car insuranceAs a business, you might be saying to yourself “we already know this – what’s the point?” but have you ever sat back and thought about whether you actually know how your customers are truly feeling while experiencing your brand in-store and online? The answer is probably no. And that’s why more and more retail experts are interested in the use of emotion AI.Emotion AI takes artificial intelligence to the next level. The SXSW 2017 festival received lots of talk about the rise of chatbots within retail and how brands like Burberry and Nike are handing their customer services over to an artificial intelligence. But how do consumers feel about this? Would you like your inquiries to be dealt with by a robot?Reaction has been positiveIn fact, the use of AI within retail has received positive reactions. Forbes research shows that 70% of millennials in the US and 62% in the UK claim they would appreciate a brand or retailer using AI technology to show more interesting products. And on top of that, Gartner predicts that, by 2020, 85% of customer interactions in retail will be managed by AI.While its use is perceived positively for efficient customer interactions, a key point has been made in various discussions; AI needs an emotional human touch if the customer service is to be consumer-friendly.Adding empathy to AI would not only improve the personalisation of digital communication between customers and retailers, but also the physical interactions. Using emotion AI technology in-store will allow brands to understand and react to the emotional engagement of consumers. Facial recognition technology and GSR sensors could be used to show:What areas of the store are most engaging,Whether and when consumers feel stressed or disengaged within the store,What products & offers are most engaging,The emotional response to store layout and customer service.The usefulness of emotion detection is enormous but retailers must primarily consider the opinions of their customers. Some may be ok with it, yet some may find it quite “creepy” and intrusive. As a brand, you have the opportunity to be a leader in this space – by being ethically responsible. You must show transparency at all times. Trust is the new currency for engagement and relationships, so demonstrate responsibility to earn it.Expect use of emotion AI to growThe use of emotion AI within the fashion industry will only grow. It will become massive in online retail, where you can understand emotions of your customers when you aren’t in front of them. It will help retailers in the physical stores understand the consumers’ emotional journeys. And while there may be concerns as to whether AI will disrupt human engagement there should be focused on the benefits it can bring to human interaction.There is value in every moment of emotional responses of consumers – whether they are angry, happy, disappointed – and you should be part of sharing that experience as a brand, business owner or staff member to capitalize on it and help them. This space is not about disrupting the high street experience but about complimenting it and enhancing the customers’ emotional engagement. Ultimately, using consumers’ emotional data alongside traditional methods of customer feedback, the retail sector can finally gain a full 360 understanding of consumers and take action to improve business services and success. Small Business Cybersecurity Threats and How to… Internet of Things Makes it Easier to Steal You… Related Posts Follow the Puck