Mandela’s legacy

first_imgTim CohenNelson Mandela made what could be his last public appearance in London at a pop concert in Hyde Park. If it is to be his last, it’s hard to imagine a more appropriate exit. The event neatly closed a circle which began with a concert at Wembley Stadium in 1988 when he was still in jail and which called for his release. It was the event that exploded his name into broad international consciousness.The 46664 concert at Hyde Park, named after both Mandela’s prison number and his Aids charity, had an “end of an era” feel about it. This sense was partly invited by Mandela himself. At 90, Mandela naturally looked frail but his familiar gravelly voice and halting delivery came through with amazing vigour.His arch humility was there as usual, in the way he described himself as “a mere pensioner”. But there was a palpable sense of departure and ending that hung over the event. Mandela himself ended his speech to the 40 000-something crowd by saying: “It is time for new hands to lift the burdens. It is in your hands now.” Mandela’s conclusion was perfectly apt, not only about himself but in a way also about his generation.Despite the clear attempts by the organizers to include younger artists, there were still sufficient of those a bit long in the tooth to create a sense of reminiscing about old battles and old times.But in other ways, the concert was a perfect reflection of his legacy; his enduring connection with young people, his still resilient popular appeal, his craving for joyousness and harmony. The line-up at the concert was marvellously varied and disparate, including pop stars from Africa and Europe, and performers of massively different styles, underlining Mandela’s peculiarly broad appeal.The artists included everyone from the latest pop sensation Amy Winehouse to the now aging reggae star Eddy Grant to Sudanese rapper Emmanuel Jal to quasi-opera star Josh Groban. The graying ones included the remaining members of Queen, Jerry Dammers, Joan Baez and Johnny Clegg. They were all backed up fabulously by the Soweto Gospel Choir, which provided a link between South Africa and the predominantly British line-up.The harmony theme was underscored by some amazing duets. One included Afrikaans singer Kurt Darren, whose inclusion you suspect could only have been at Mandela’s insistence. Eddy Grant helpfully told the audience that Darren was “really popular in South Africa”. Darren joined Grant to sing the reggae star’s anti-apartheid hit “Give me hope Johanna” which was only slightly more weird than Groban and Vusi Mahlasela singing the old classic “Weeping”. The duet of the evening was performed by British R&B singer Jamelia and the South African Loyiso.The 46664 concerts have been very successful in raising Aids awareness, but they do slightly leave you with an odd sense of otherwise hedonistic, self-obsessed pop stars burnishing their personal brands by association with both Mandela and his good deeds. Film star Will Smith kicked off the concert with his wife Jada Pinkett Smith by quoting the singer Peter Gabriel as once saying: “If the world could only have one father, the man that we would choose to be our father would be Nelson Mandela”. It was sweet but hardly a quote of munificent insight and wisdom.However, it’s easy to be cynical about these events. One blogger in South Africa commented that the three primary goals of the concert were to “Firstly, and most obviously, to exploit Nelson Mandela while we still can. Secondly, to prop up the flagging careers of ageing British rock stars. And thirdly, to make middle-class British people and white South African expats feel really good about themselves”.Yet, there is something wondrous about them too. Simple Minds singer Jim Kerr, who wrote the song “Mandela Day” for the 1988 concert, recalled in an article in the Guardian how difficult it had been to get the big names to play at that time. “It’s interesting to now think of Mandela the man…because for almost three decades he was a myth. He was incarcerated. You’d barely even seen a picture of him.” Amnesty International, for example, did not support it because they were strictly advocates of non-violence. Yet the concert happened and a host of big names did participate.Of all the ostentatiously worthy pop concerts like Band Aid, support for Mandela’s freedom and later his legacy do have a sense of legitimacy, partly because of the history but also because Mandela transparently loves them so much. The leading lights of the music industry, particularly in the UK, really did anticipate the future with either magnificent or happily fortuitous insight in the case of Mandela, so their championing of him now is less creepy than it might otherwise have been.One of the best things U2’s singer Bono ever said, to the best of my recollection, about Mandela concerned a concert in a European city that had been particularly badly organized and the publicity poorly executed. Consequently, the crowd was small, and participants were shuffling their feet wondering how Mandela would take it. In fact, he just didn’t seem to notice how few people were there; he was just delighted at the people who had shown up. Mandela is the ultimate glass-half-full kind of person, and music forms part of that cup. Mandela’s embrace of it underlines just how deeply he feels about reconciliation.Go to the MediaClub weekly columns home pageTim Cohen is a freelance journalist writing for a variety of South African publications. He is currently contracted as a columnist to Business Day and the Weekender, where he worked for most of his career, and financial website Moneyweb where he writes on business and corporate activity for an associate site called Dealweb. He was the 2004 Sanlam Financial Journalist of the Year.last_img read more

SharePoint: Is the Analogy to the PC the Right One?

first_img Leave a Reply Cancel reply Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *Comment Name *E-mail *Website At the Microsoft SharePoint conference in October, Steve Balmer likened the current state of SharePoint to the early days of the PC market.  Microsoft is following their standard gameplan for product success of blending the elements of a highly programmable environment with rich developer tools and a well-recognized User Interface.  Using this criteria, comparing SharePoint to PCs reveals similarities.Balmer fully recognizes that in the near term that SharePoint is not ready to land a strong blow to Open Text, EMC and IBM high-volume, transactional and process-heavy enterprise solutions.  But that’s not what they’re targeting initially.   Microsoft is following the same path that SQL Server took.  Because developer tools for SharePoint are easy to use,the platform is attractive to departments and groups with limited resources.  Microsoft is targeting “the many applications companies build with one man year or less of development.”  Microsoft development tools let even non-programmers dabble and build small applications that can fill the needs of small groups.It is very likely that the world will see a lot of SharePoint applications developed over the next five years.  And many of those applications will be considered as successful in fulfilling the needs and requirements of small groups.  But is that a good thing?  When viewed from the enterprise level, administration of many different departmental solutions can become unwieldy, not unlike the problem of managing data by spreadsheet rather than via a central database.Ultimately when a company sees the benefits of providing a centralized approach to data management, the challenge will be to pull together many highly-customized SharePoint worlds into a single unified view. December 4th, 2009 Leave a Comment center_img Category: Enterprise Content Management, Technology ‹ Compliance: Insurance Regulations and the MAR Innovation: Applying Agile Outside the Boundaries of Software ›last_img read more

Intex annnounces Aqua HD 5.0 and Aqua Y2

first_imgIntex has just revealed two new smartphones, the Aqua HD 5.0 and the Aqua Y2. The dual-sim smartphones have been launched at a price of Rs 7,790 and Rs 5,190 respectively. The devices have been listed on the official site of the company.Details of availability of the devices are not yet known. It is expected that the company will make the announcement in the coming days. The Intex Aqua HD comes with  5-inch HD IPS display and runs on Android 4.4.2 KitKat out-of-the-box. Some other features include a 1.3GHz quad-core MediaTek processor, 1GB RAM, 8GB inbuilt storage, expandable upto 32GB via microSD card, 13MP rear camera, 5MP front camera, and 2300mAh battery. Whereas the Aqua Y2 also runs on Android 4.4.2 KitKat and sports a 4-inch WVGA IPS display. It also runs on 1.2GHz quad-core Spreadtrum processor. Other features include 1GB RAM, 8GB inbuilt storage, expandable upto 64GB via microSD card, 8MP rear camera, 2MP front camera, and a 1400mAH battery.last_img read more

Online TV specialist Brightcove is to open a new o

first_imgOnline TV specialist Brightcove is to open a new office in Dubai as part of its plan to expand in the Middle East.The new office, which will be the central hub for the company in the Middle East and North Africa, will be led by Brahim Laraiki, regional director for Middle East and Africa.Laraiki, who previously held positions with Orange, Lenovo, and Microsoft, will report into Sue Thexton, senior vice-president of EMEA.Brightcove already works with a number of major media and broadcast organisations in the Middle East and North Africa, including Al Jazeera, Abu Dhabi Media and CNBC Africa, and is looking to accelerate its operations in the region with the launch of the new offices.“Since the company launched in 2004, Brightcove has pursued strategic international growth in order to keep pace with global demand for premium online video distribution, management and monetization services,” said Thexton.“We are excited to open a new office in the Middle East and look forward to helping media organizations and brands across the region make the most of their video assets by increasing reach and driving more engagement and advertising revenue.”last_img read more

YouTube has rolled out its recently launched US su

first_imgYouTube has rolled out its recently launched US subscription TV service in 10 new metro areas, making it available in 15 markets in total.YouTube TV is now available in Atlanta, Charlotte, Dallas-Fort Worth, Detroit, Houston, Miami-Fort Lauderdale, Minneapolis-Saint Paul, Orlando-Daytona Beach-Melbourne, Phoenix and Washington DC.YouTube first unveiled the service in March and initially introduced the over-the-top offering in Chicago, Philadelphia, New York City, the San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles.YouTube TV offers a line-up of more than 40 channels, including the some of the biggest US broadcast networks in ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC and ESPN.It is available across devices, includes a cloud DVR with “no storage limits” for recording TV shows, and costs US$35 per month without commitments – substantially cheaper than a typical US cable subscription.Access to YouTube’s homegrown SVOD service, YouTube Red, is also included as part of the offering and users can add additional premium TV networks – such as Showtime or Fox Soccer Plus – to their line-up for an additional charge.Love live sports and TV but over cable? We’ve got you covered.YouTube TV is now in 10 new US areas. Try it free→— YouTube TV (@YouTubeTV) July 20, 2017last_img read more

Regenstrief scientist calls for precision surveillance for colon cancer screening

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Nov 8 2018The interval at which an individual undergoes a repeat colonoscopy because of previous pre-cancerous polyps — a practice known as “surveillance” — should be tailored to the individual and not simply be determined by the results of prior colonoscopies, according to Regenstrief Institute research scientist Thomas F. Imperiale, M.D. In an editorial in the American Journal of Gastroenterology, he calls for “precision surveillance,” a phrase he has coined to echo the personalized, targeted focus of precision medicine and the application of these concepts to colon cancer screening and surveillance.”The goal of colorectal cancer surveillance is to reduce incidence and death from colorectal cancer,” said Dr. Imperiale. “The only factor we currently consider for whether and when to do a surveillance colonoscopy is the number and size of precancerous polyps found on a previous colonoscopy screening. No other factors are considered; this practice does not always make good clinical sense.”Precision surveillance goes beyond that one element (what’s in the colon) and considers the patient’s phenotype – personal characters such as age, personal medical history, BMI (body mass index), and health habits such as smoking. And when the data become more widely available, consideration of when to rescope should include the skill of the colonoscopists who performed the previous colonoscopies.”Dr. Imperiale says that his editorial, “Thinking Big About Small Adenomas: Moving Towards ‘Precision Surveillance'” is a small step toward advancing surveillance colonoscopy by expanding the proportion of persons considered “low-risk” from one or two small, precancerous polyps to up to four such polyps. The giant leap, he says, would be to employ precision surveillance and make screening recommendations truly personalized and based on the patient, their polyps, and their colonoscopist.Related StoriesAre physical examinations by family doctors still needed?Mosquito surveillance in Madagascar reveals new insight into malaria transmissionScientists discover hundreds of protein-pairs through coevolution studyAlthough studies suggest that the smaller the precancerous lesions are, the longer it takes for them to become cancerous, scientists do not have an accurate picture of the natural history of these lesions because they are removed upon discovery. It is known that most do not become cancerous.”While we want to keep an eye on those individuals who have shown they can grow precancerous polyps, we need to balance being appropriately aggressive in those with whom we should be, with backing off from intense treatment for people who don’t require it ,” said Dr. Imperiale. “Precision surveillance starts to get at that issue.”As an example, he contrasts two hypothetical patients — a healthy 55-year-old and a 70-year-old on home oxygen or dialysis. Each is found to have one or two small precancerous polyps. Current guidelines call for the same five- to ten-year interval for a repeat colonoscopy; most colonoscopists would re-scope at five years. Dr. Imperiale says that colonoscopists need to use their judgment and discuss with each patient when and even if to repeat the colonoscopy.For the 55-year-old he would recommend a repeat colonoscopy in five to ten years or sooner if symptoms appear or other concerns arise. For the 70-year-old with significant health issues he would discuss with the individual and relevant family whether the best course might be to forego further colonoscopy simply to look for any new polyps.”To provide the best care to patients and use healthcare resources responsibly, we need to be more thoughtful about certain factors in addition to the results of previous colonoscopies,” said Dr. Imperiale. “We need to screen and re-examine those who need it most and not those people who won’t benefit. Precision screening and surveillance may help achieve that goal.”Source: read more

Research reveals how metabolites can be used to inhibit epigenetic mechanisms and

first_img Source: Reviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Feb 28 2019The discovery could lead to novel, more specific, and more effective MS therapies and a better understanding of how the disease developsUnderstanding and mitigating the role of epigenetics (environmental influences that trigger changes in gene expression) in disease development is a major goal of researchers. Now, a newly published paper featured on the March cover of the journal Brain adds significantly to this work by detailing how metabolites can be used to inhibit epigenetic mechanisms and effectively treat a range of diseases, including multiple sclerosis (MS).Dimethyl fumarate (Tecfidera™)–a cell-permeable metabolite in the family of fumaric acid esters (FAEs)–is an approved treatment for MS and is potentially an effective therapy for other autoimmune diseases. The precise mechanism of the drug’s action has been only partially understood, however. In their new paper, researchers at the Advanced Science Research Center (ASRC) at The Graduate Center of The City University of New York and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai take a major step toward unraveling the mystery by identifying a possible mechanism of action for FAEs. In doing so, they also highlight new concepts that may lay the groundwork for the development of novel classes of drugs for the treatment of MS and other diseases.Scientists believe that MS develops when epigenetic changes cause certain brain-homing immune cells–or T cells–to attack the central nervous system. In their current paper, researchers posited that FAE metabolites work by mitigating the development of certain brain-homing T cells.”This work has given us extremely useful insight into how we might leverage the metabolic-epigenetic interplay between cells and their environment to create new immune-modulating therapies for diseases like MS,” said Patrizia Casaccia, director of the ASRC Neuroscience Initiative and a professor of genetics and neuroscience at Mount Sinai. “It may one day be possible to target and suppress production of the specific brain-homing T cells that play a role in the development of MS.”MethodologyRelated StoriesMercy Medical Center adds O-arm imaging system to improve spinal surgery resultsNew therapy shows promise in preventing brain damage after traumatic brain injuryRush University Medical Center offers new FDA-approved treatment for brain aneurysmsResearchers recruited 97 volunteers with MS that were either treatment-naïve (47), FAE-treated (35), or glatiramer acetate-treated (16). Blood samples were collected from each participant and their levels of brain-homing T cells were measured by looking at the percentages of the chemokine receptors CCR4 and CCR6, which are critical to T cell trafficking between the gut, brain, and skin. The data showed significantly lower levels of these brain-homing T cells in the FAE-treated group than in the other comparison groups.Researchers subsequently analyzed how FAEs change the epigenetic landscape of T cells to reduce the development of these pathogenic cells. Specifically, they found that FAEs have a strong epigenetic effect on a particular DNA region in T cells that includes a micro RNA called MIR-21, which is necessary to create disease-associated brain-homing T cells. Taken together, the results suggest that the immunomodulatory effect of FAEs in MS is at least in part due to the epigenetic regulation of these specific brain-homing T cells.Significance”Our findings about therapeutically active metabolites have implications for the treatment of not only multiple sclerosis but also other autoimmune diseases such as psoriasis and inflammatory bowel disease, which involve the same type of T cells,” said Achilles Ntranos, lead author of the paper and a physician and neuroimmunology fellow at Mount Sinai Hospital whose work is supported by the Leon Levy Foundation and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Strokes. “Understanding the epigenetic effect of metabolites on the immune system will help us develop several novel strategies for the treatment of autoimmune diseases, which could help patients and physicians achieve better clinical outcomes.”Organizational AttributionOur correct name is the Advanced Science Research Center at The Graduate Center of The City University of New York. For the purpose of space, Advanced Science Research Center, GC/CUNY is acceptable. On second reference, ASRC is correct.last_img read more

Google expected to unveil longexpected gaming project at GDC next month

first_imgGoogle could be ready to dive headlong into video games. The tech giant revealed on Tuesday that it will be holding a special event at the upcoming Game Developers Conference, scheduled for March 18-22 in San Francisco. The notice invites attendees to “gather around” on Tuesday, March 19, at the Moscone Center for a keynote speech.Chatter online about the event pointed to Google’s Project Stream, a PC streaming video game service the company began testing in October and closed last month. Among the games streamed via Google Chrome to computers was Ubisoft’s “Assassin’s Creed Odyssey,” a lush, deep adventure set in ancient Greece.But many also noted that Google could also jump into the hardware game. Back in February 2018, tech news site The Information reported that Google was developing a game streaming service, codenamed “Yeti,” that could on Chromecast or a special Google console.Subsequently, video game news site Kotaku also reported in October that Google was working on some type of hardware solution to go with its streaming platform, as well as looking to acquire or recruit game developers. Google had hired former Sony and Microsoft game executive Phil Harrison in January 2018, the site noted.Regardless, we will know more this time next month. Explore further Credit: CC0 Public Domain Google teams with Ubisoft to test video game streamingcenter_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Google expected to unveil long-expected gaming project at GDC next month (2019, February 20) retrieved 17 July 2019 from (c)2019 USA TodayDistributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.last_img read more

Amazon Google agree to allow each others streaming apps

first_imgAmazon and Google announced Thursday they had agreed to allow each other’s streaming media applications to work on their platforms, ending a spat over video between the tech giants. Users of Amazon’s Fire TV will be able to use the YouTube application and Google Chromecast users will have access to Amazon Prime Video under an agreement by the two tech giants The companies said in a statement that the official YouTube apps will be available on Amazon’s Fire TV in the coming months, allowing users of the Amazon platform to access the music videos, movies, shows and other content from the Google-owned service.The agreement also enables Amazon Prime members streaming to Chromecast or using Android TV devices to access Amazon’s video content.The deal appears to end a spat between the two tech giants that made it difficult or impossible for users of one of the video services to use the platform to access the other’s.”We are excited to work with Amazon to launch the official YouTube apps on Fire TV devices worldwide,” said Heather Rivera, head of product partnerships at YouTube.”Bringing our flagship YouTube experience to Amazon Fire TV gives our users even more ways to watch the videos and creators they love.”Andrew Bennett, head of business development for Prime Video, aid the agreement would “give our customers convenient access to the shows and movies they love… customers will have even more ways to stream what they want, whenever they want, no matter where they are.”Amazon and Google are in fierce competition over streaming, but their spat had sparked concerns of anti-competitive conduct by locking out an important rival.The joint statement said Fire TV users will be able to sign in to their existing YouTube account and access their full library of content.Chromecast users will meanwhile have similar access to the Prime Video catalog. Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.center_img © 2019 AFP Citation: Amazon, Google agree to allow each other’s streaming apps (2019, April 18) retrieved 17 July 2019 from Amazon to ban sale of rival video streaming deviceslast_img read more