HR Answers: DOs and DON’Ts of successful succession planning

first_img continue reading » Succession planning is crucial for every business and for every key employee. It is the process of preparing for when important roles within an organization become vacant and how to best fill them. Every organization experiences turnover, retirements and sudden losses. When those events happen, institutional knowledge is lost, affecting not just your business operations but sometimes the member experience as well.Your credit union should have a succession plan in place for every executive and leaders with key roles. For example, if you have an account manager who is in charge of a key portfolio, this is someone you want to make sure you can replace without disruption to the member (or business member).The timeline for a good succession strategy is typically one to three years, but in reality, it’s an ongoing process that should be bolstered continually with internal knowledge-sharing and mentoring. By planning ahead, your credit union will be prepared to continue working towards its future goals.Below are a few “do’s” and “don’ts” to keep in mind when it comes to succession planning: ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

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Our love of reality TV reno shows means renovations are on the rise

first_imgPlenty of homeowners have decided to try their hand at renovating.OUR love of reality TV reno shows means renovations are on the rise, with one in three homeowners having undertaken some work.A survey by finder.com.au found more homeowners were renovating for a variety of reasons.More from newsNew apartments released at idyllic retirement community Samford Grove Presented by Parks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus21 hours agoSome thought it was too expensive to move, while others were making much needed repairs.With the survey finding 34 per cent of homeowners had renovated, that equated to more than 3 million homes having a makeover.Half of those who had renovated said it was something they had always wanted to do, while about 12 per cent said they did the work because their home was dilapidated.About a quarter of these getting out the hammer and nails said they were wanting to try and boost their home’s long term value.Only about 9 per cent of Queensland homeowners renovated to improve value, which was fewer than Finder insights manager, Graham Cooke, expected.He warned those wanting to do a renovations to set themselves a strict budget before they started and always seek plenty of quotes.last_img read more

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Enforcement Orders issued to Site C

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Environmental Assessment Office has issued several non-compliances to the Site C project.On March 29th to April 1st 2016 and April 26 to 29, 2016, the compliance and enforcement officer determined after a inspection and review Certificate Holder (Site C) is not compliant with Condition 69 of the Certificate due to a failure to follow rules to properly segregate and dispose of recyclables and waste material during the construction of the Project.The project has been told that they need to separate all waste and recyclables into the proper, clearly marked bins,  inspect recyclable and waste management bins on a daily basis to verify compliance with the first condition, and maintain records of recyclable and waste management bin inspections.- Advertisement -It was also deemed the project was not in compliance with Condition 69 of the Certificate which requires the Certificate Holder to implement measures to control and clean up leaks and spills of hydrocarbon material during the construction of the Project.The project has been ordered to inspect all vehicles, equipment, and hydrocarbon storage areas for leaks to ground on a daily basis. Immediately upon discovery of a hydrocarbon leak to ground, take measures to contain the leak and remove and properly dispose of any hydrocarbon contaminated soil, and maintain records of the amount and disposal mechanism of hydrocarbon contaminated soil.The reports were released on June 24th by Chris Parks, Senior Compliance and Enforcement Officer.Advertisementlast_img read more

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A feast of South African festivals

first_imgFestivals, festivals, festivals … South Africa has a celebration for every event, art form, food, drink and agricultural commodity.The pupils from Chris Hani High School welcome festival goers on day two of the Cape Town International Jazz Festival in March 2017. (Image: Cape Town International Jazz Festival, Facebook)Here’s a comprehensive month-by-month guide to some of South Africa’s best excuses for a party. You can browse the whole list, or click on the links below to jump to a specific month:FebruaryMarchAprilMayJuneJulyAugustSeptemberOctoberNovemberDecemberFEBRUARYDance UmbrellaWhere: Johannesburg, GautengWebsite: Dance UmbrellaA festival of contemporary choreography and dance, the Dance Umbrella presents work ranging from community-based dance troupes to international companies. Since it started in 1988, it has launched many South African choreographers into international dance, including Vincent Mantsoe, Robyn Orlin and Boyzie Cekwana.Up the CreekWhere: Up the Creek campsite, Breede River, near Swellendam, Western CapeWebsite: Up the CreekThe Up the Creek campsite is situated on the banks of the Breede River and during the four-day festival offers three stages: the main stage, the river stage and the all-night-long Breede River bar stage. Visitors can frolic in the river during the day and then move up to main stage as the day progresses.Prickly Pear FestivalWhere: Uitenhage, Nelson Mandela Bay, Eastern CapeThe Prickly Pear Festival is held in late February or early March every at Cuyler Hofstede farm near Uitenhage in the Eastern Cape’s Nelson Mandela Bay. It’s a day of traditional food, such as ginger beer, pancakes, potjiekos, home-made jam, a spit braai and fish braai, bunnychow and home-made pudding.MARCHCape Town International Jazz FestivalWhere: Cape Town, Western CapeWebsite: Cape Town International Jazz FestivalCape Town International Jazz is a two-day festival held during March or April featuring some 40 international and African acts performing on five stages to an audience of 15 000. It also features photographic and art exhibitions.Lambert’s Bay KreeffeesWhere: Lambert’s Bay, West Coast, Western CapeWebsite: KreeffeesKreef is Afrikaans for crayfish, and a fees can be both festival and feast. It is held every March in the West Coast town of Lambert’s Bay, where you’ll feast on fresh crayfish and get festive at rock concerts by some of South Africa’s favourite musicians. There’s also bungee jumping, aerial displays, a half-marathon, beer tents and more.The Rotary River FestivalWhere: Vanderbijlpark, GautengWebsite: Rotary River FestivalThe Rotary River Festival takes place on the banks of the Vaal River at Stonehaven on Vaal in Vanderbijlpark and has been running since 1995. It’s a fun fund-raising occasion, with the money raised going to a large number of local charities. The festival features top musicians, dance, fashion, raft racing, tasty eats, and plenty of fun for the kids and those that are young at heart.Scifest AfricaWhere: Grahamstown, Eastern CapeWebsite: Scifest AfricaSciFest Africa, or the National Festival of Science, Engineering and Technology, is held in late March in Grahamstown, Eastern Cape. Over seven days it features some 600 events: lectures, game drives, a laser show, workshops, sunset shows, robotics competitions, science olympics, school quizzes, interactive exhibitions, the PlayFair, field trips, talkshops and a film festival. Attendance now exceeds 35 000 visitors every year.Tonteldoos Country FestivalWhere: Tonteldoos, MpumalangaThe Tonteldoos Country Festival, previously known as the Peach Festival, happens in late March or early April in the village of Tonteldoos, some 20km northwest of Dullstroom and two hours from Johannesburg. It offers peaches and pretty much everything that can be made from the fruit, including peach mampoer.APRILKlein Karoo Nationale KunstefeesWhere: Oudtshoorn, Western CapeWebsite: Klein Karoo Nationale KunstefeesThe Klein Karoo Nasionale Kunstefees in Oudtshoorn features well-known and young up-and-coming artists in dance and theatre. Started as an Afrikaans alternative to the mainly English National Arts Festival, KKNK has 200 different shows on three different stages.AfrikaBurnWhere: Tankwa Karoo, Northern CapeWebsite: AfrikaBurnAfrika Burn is based on The Burning Man festival which grew out of a loose grouping of individuals and organisations who questioned, and continue to question mainstream, highly commercialised society and what it does to the notion and workings of community. In a nutshell, it’s about radical self-expression.Splashy FenWhere: Underberg, KwaZulu-NatalWebsite: Splashy FenEvery year the Splashy Fen music festival attracts thousands of people to a farm near Underberg in KwaZulu-Natal for a feast of mainstream and alternative rock and pop. It offers plenty of facilities, but there are great bed-and-breakfasts in nearby towns for those who believe music festivals can be enjoyed without mud.Philippolis Witblits FestivalWhere: Philippolis, Free StateThe Philippolis Witblits Festival, held in early April, will give you a taste of a proud local tradition – witblits (Afrikaans for “white lightning”) is South African moonshine. Held in the oldest town in the Free State, the festival has boeresport (literally “farmers sport”) for the kids, food, drink and more witblits.Prince Albert Town and Olive FestivalWhere: Prince Albert, Western CapeWebsite: Prince Albert Town and Olive Festival The Prince Albert Town and Olive Festival, held in the Swartberg region of the Western Cape in April, offers a whole lot more than just the region’s famous olives and wine. There’s an art exhibition, beer tents, live music, witblits tastings, crafts for kids, historic tours, a cycle race, an olive pip-spitting competition, culinary demonstrations, a midnight ghost walk, stalls, cabaret, a dance and more.MAYPink Loerie Mardi GrasWhere: Knysna, Western CapeWebsite: Pink Loerie Mardi GrasThe Knysna loerie is a green bird, but the Pink Loerie Mardi Gras is different. A gay festival held in the beautiful coastal town of Knysna in May, the Mardi Gras offers four days of non-stop entertainment for anyone who enjoys a party.Riebeek Kasteel Olive FestivalWhere: Riebeek Kasteel, Western CapeWebsite: Riebeek Kasteel Olive FestivalThe Riebeek Kasteel Olive Festival takes place in the Swartland area of the Western Cape in May. A feast of wine and the best olives in South Africa, the festival also has an art competition, live entertainment, stalls and lots of food.JUNECalitzdorp Port and Wine FestivalWhere: Calitzdorp, Western CapeWebsite: Calitzdorp Port and Wine FestivalThe Klein Karoo town of Calitzdorp is the port-wine capital of South Africa. Its annual port festival, held over a weekend in June, is hosted by the eight wine cellars of Calitzdorp. There’s a historical treasure hunt around the town, local arts and crafts, lifestyle market stalls to suit all tastes, the Port Dance, restaurants, food stalls and the annual South African boules championships, plus much more.National Arts FestivalWhere: Grahamstown, Eastern CapeWebsite: National Arts FestivalThe Grahamstown National Arts Festival, held in late June or early July every year, is South Africa’s oldest, biggest and best-known arts festival. The 10-day event offers culture hounds every indulgence of theatre, music, song, dance, film and a whole lot more. If there’s one South African festival you have to attend, this is it.JULYHow artists will help South Africa reflect, critique and reimagine our national aspirations: https://t.co/LnXQ2DnchJ #NAF2016— National Arts Fest (@artsfestival) October 30, 2015Dullstroom Winter FestivalWhere: Dullstroom, MpumalangaWebsite: Dullstroom Winter FestivalHeld annually in July, the Dullstroom Winter Festival is historically themed as Christmas in Winter. Activities during the festival include a golf day, a tagged trout event – Dullstroom is a fly-fishing hotspot – chocolate and wine tastings, art exhibitions, whiskey tastings and themed restaurant evenings. Live music shows showcasing roots, blues and folk music from top South African performers take place at various venues around town.Knysna Oyster FestivalWhere: Knysna, Western CapeWebsite: Knysna Oyster FestivalThe coastal town of Knysna is famous for its oysters, and increasingly famous for the July festival that celebrates them. In addition to oyster braais, oyster tasting, oyster-eating competitions and other molluscular activities, there’s live entertainment and lots of sporting events.VryfeesWhere: Bloemfontein, Free StateWebsite: VryfeesFormerly the Volksblad Arts Festival, this is a lovely festival with lots of live shows, stage productions, and an art market with lots of stalls. This festival is the big showcase for artists from all over the country who want to perform in the Free State.Ellisras Bushveld FestivalWhere: Lephalele (Ellisras), LimpopoThe Ellisras Bushveld Festival takes place in early July in the heart of the bushveld, in the Waterberg district of Limpopo. The festival includes cattle shows, a game auction, horse jumping, dog shows, agricultural activities, a three-day battle for the best 4×4 competition, a game farms expo, hunting opportunities, bird- and tree-identification competitions, traditional food, a beer tent and huge camp fires.AUGUSTOppikoppi Bushveld FestivalWhere: Northam, North WestWebsite: OppikoppiHeld on the bushveld farm of Oppikoppi (“op die koppie” in Afrikaans, or “on the hill”), this festival offers three permanent thatched stages, a smaller comedy stage and a stage for more chilled music at the top of the koppie. Oppikoppi has helped establish many South African musicians’ careers, but it’s not for the faint-hearted. This is real bushveld: hot and dry, and everywhere red dust and thorn trees. Expect to shower a lot when you get home. (Oppikoppi also hosts an Easter Festival in March.)Standard Bank Joy of JazzWhere: Johannesburg, GautengWebsite: Standard Bank Joy of JazzJohannesburg’s biggest annual jazz festival is an ideal family outing, featuring a range of musical styles but with a strong emphasis on jazz. Over 200 local and international artists perform at different venues across the city, particularly in Newtown.Hantam VleisfeesWhere: Calvinia, Northern CapeWebsite: Hantam VleisfeesCalvinia in the Northern Cape is sheep country, and this festival celebrates meat. There’s meat braaied, stewed, curried, in pita, on sosaties, in potjies – you can even pick up a done-to-perfection sheep’s head for a mere R30. First held in 1989, the three-day Hantam Vleisfees has a music concert, street party, vintage car rally and, a highlight for many, the Miss Vleisfees competition – a glittering affair with dinner and dancing.Cellar Rats Wine FestivalWhere: Magaliesburg, GautengWebsite: Cellar Rats Wine FestivalTaste South Africa’s best wines in a tranquil outdoor setting in Magaliesburg. Held every year in August, the Cellar Rats Wine Festival is a day of wine tasting, with picnic baskets for sale and many activities for the kids. Enjoy huge shady trees, lush green grass and an abundance of birdlife on the banks of the picturesque Magalies River. Designated drivers get in for free.SEPTEMBERArts AliveWhere: Johannesburg, GautengWebsite: Arts AliveArts Alive, held every September since 1992, features a heady mix of dance, visual art, poetry and music at venues in the Joburg inner city. The main concert, held at the Johannesburg Stadium, headlines international superstars such as 50 Cent and Busta Rhymes. Over 600 artists perform during the four-day festival, with most shows at various venues in Newtown. The ever-popular Jazz on the Lake is held on the final day.Aardklop Arts FestivalWhere: Potchefstroom, North WestWebsite: Aardklop Arts FestivalAardklop Arts Festival offers a feast of arts and an all-round good jol for five days in late September and early October. First held in 1998, Aardklop – Afrikaans roughly translated as “earth beat” – has over 90 productions, with classical music, jazz, hard rock, cabaret, visual arts, theatre, circus performances, opera, African and World music, poetry and more, ending with the OppiAarde rock festival on the final day.Southern Cross Music FestivalWhere: Mooi River, KwaZulu-NatalEvery September the Southern Cross Music Festival showcases South African music in a three-day event in Hidden Valley on the banks of KwaZulu-Natal’s beautiful Mooi River. First held in 1998, the festival donates part of its proceeds to charity. In addition to music, there’s fishing, swimming, white water rafting, abseiling, hikes, walks, mountain biking and 4×4 courses. The farm caters for 6 000 festival-goers.Woodstock Music FestivalWhere: Hartbeeshoek, North WestWoodstock, first held in 1999, is the largest youth-oriented music and lifestyle festival in South Africa. In addition to mainstream music, the festival offers a market of crafters and alternative lifestyle products over four days. It is held at Hartbeeshoek Holiday resort near Hartbeespoort Dam in North West.Boertjie KontreifeesWhere: Bultfontein, Free StateWebsite: Boertjie KontreifeesThe Boertjie Kontreifees is an agricultural festival, featuring 340 stalls, which draws about 20 000 people over four days. It includes plenty of sport, plenty to eat and drink, lots of competitions, and many entertainers. It being an agricultural festival, you can expect to find horses, cattle, sheep, buck, greyhounds, tractors, and cars as well.Gariep KunstefeesWhere: Kimberley, Northern CapeWebsite: Gariep KunstefeesThe Gariep Kunstefees (arts festival) features an impressive line-up of local musicians, a film festival showcasing South Africa’s new filmmakers, as well as art exhibitions and children’s theatre.Hermanus Whale FestivalWhere: Hermanus, Western CapeWebsite: Hermanus Whale FestivalEvery year, southern right whales travel thousands of miles to the Cape south coast to mate and calve in the bays. Join the villagers of Hermanus for an entertainment-packed festival, in the town with the best land-based whale watching in the world.Awesome Africa Music FestivalWhere: Midmar Dam, KwaZulu-NatalThe Standard Bank Awesome Africa Music Festival, first held in 1999, takes place at the Midmar Dam in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands after calling Durban home for many years. Its focus is on collaboration with musicians from Africa and beyond.Prince Albert Agricultural ShowWhere: Prince Albert, Western CapeWebsite: Prince AlfredJoin the people of Prince Albert as they celebrate their agricultural heritage in September. Homecrafts, art and flowers, horses, motorbikes, sheep and angora goat competitions, local products, delicious food, bar facilities and entertainment for young and old are all on the menu.MacufeWhere: Bloemfontein, Free StateWebsite: MacufeMacufe, the 10-day Mangaung African Cultural Festival, showcases the cream of African and international talent. It features jazz, gospel, kwaito, hip-hop, R&B, rock and classical music, as well as dance, drama, cabaret, musical theatre, poetry, fine art and traditional arts and crafts. The festival attracts up to 140 000 people and is presented in late September and early October by the Performing Arts Centre of the Free State.It’s great to see our female musicians get so much support. A prove that they are being recognized #Macufe2015 pic.twitter.com/ksgrjNzKR1— Arts & Culture (@ArtsCultureSA) October 9, 2015White Mountain FestivalWhere: Estcourt, KwaZulu-NatalWebsite: White Mountain FestivalThe White Mountain Folk Festival in the Central Drakensberg mountain range offers great music in an awesome setting for three days in September. Featuring acoustic performances by some of South Africa’s top folk musicians, it is held at White Mountain Lodge in the foothills of the Giant’s Castle Nature Reserve. Camping in a beautiful site at the edge of a dam is free, with hot shower units at the ready, plus lots of “executive” loos. There’s also a variety of food stalls, and a beer market offering naturally brewed local ales and lagers.Vrede Paddadors FeesWhere: Vrede, Free StateThe full name of Paddadors, the Free State town of Vrede’s annual festival, is the Vrede Paddadors Rooivleis en Kultuurfees – which translates literally as the Peace Frog-Thirst Red-Meat and Culture Festival. The story goes that the dry land on which the town was established was originally called Paddadors (“frog thirst” in Afrikaans), until peace came and the place was named Vrede. The festival offers live music, traditional food, a beer garden, children’s activities and more.OCTOBERLekkerhoekie OpskopWhere: Polkadraai Festival Ground, Zwartkops, CenturionThe Lekkerhoekie Opskop brings together many of South Africa’s best-loved Afrikaans singers. There is also plenty of other entertainment on the side, including things for the kids to do.Herman Charles Bosman WeekendWhere: Groot Marico, North WestWebsite: Herman Charles Bosman WeekendHerman Charles Bosman was one of South Africa’s greatest writers, and this weekend festival celebrates his work in the desert town of Groot Marico, the setting for many of his stories. Some of South Africa’s top actors read from and perform Bosman’s work; there’s also good food, good company – and lots of mampoer.Rocking the Daisies Music and Lifestyle FestivalWhere: Cloof Wine Estate, Darling, Western CapeWebsite: Rocking the Daisies Music and Lifestyle FestivalRocking the Daisies features top South African bands performing a wide variety of music, as well as comedy, burlesque dancing, acoustic jams, and giant African puppeteering. The Food Village looks after the stomach and the Traders Market offers exciting goodies. Other attractions include swimming, wine tasting, the Daisy Den and Art Field, and activities for the kids.NOVEMBERFicksburg Cherry FestivalWhere: Ficksburg, Free StateWebsite: Ficksburg Cherry FestivalOne of the oldest festivals in South Africa – first held in 1969 – the Ficksburg Cherry Festival now attracts around 20 000 visitors to this small eastern Free State town every November. The scenery is magnificent, and the festival offers cherry and asparagus tastings, tours, picnics, music, and the Miss Cherry Blossom and Miss Cherry Pip competitions.DECEMBERRustler’s Valley New Year’s GatheringWhere: Ficksburg, Free StateWebsite: Rustler’s Valley New Year’s GatheringRustler’s Valley in the eastern Free State hosts some of its best trance, dance and drumming festivals in late November and December, including a New Year celebration. The majestic scenery in the foothills of the Maluti Mountains alone is worth the trip.Updated November 2015Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

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South African poet takes African women’s message to the world

first_imgPoet Koleka Putuma is a South African cultural icon-in-waiting. Her straight-talking multimedia poetry tackles racism, sexism and social ills head-on, giving young African women a formidable global voice.Koleka Putuma is a South African spoken word poet who uses poetry, music and the power of the internet to give African women a voice. (Image: Facebook)CD AndersonPutuma’s words are never minced and are delivered without formula or platitude. Whether in spoken word format or written, her poetry tackles serious issues with the gravity they deserve.Following her win at the inaugural South African National Poetry Slam in 2014, as well as a 2016 PEN SA Student Writing Prize, Putuma released her first anthology of poetry in April 2017, titled Collective Amnesia. The book has gone on to sell more than 2,000 copies; this in a local literary market where poetry books rarely sell more than 100 copies.The anthology is a top seller in a number of South Africa’s most popular independent bookstores, but what makes Putuma’s success different is her approach to delivering her work to the world.Embracing new media such as video and social media, she delivers her voice directly to the people.Collaborating with video artist Jarryd Kleinhans and photographer Andiswa Mkosi, Putuma presents visual interpretations of her work through online video-sharing sites. The effect is immediate and collaborative, changing poetry from being a monologue into an interactive dialogue.However, to read her words in print, in book form or through her social media postings, the full effect of her use of language and metaphor offers a closer exploration of her work.Following an intense three-month book launch performance tour to 13 centres across the country, and as it is about to enter its third print run, Collective Amnesia has been chosen as a prescribed text for second-year university students. Putuma is turning South African poetry into the new rock ‘n’ roll.Born a year before South African post-apartheid democracy, Putuma is of a generation that doesn’t have a living memory of apartheid, yet she still feels and can articulate the repercussions ingrained in modern social ills of gender violence, entrenched patriarchy and ongoing discrimination.Milisuthando Bongela, cultural editor of the Mail & Guardian, praises her precocious talent, saying: “This person who was born in 1993 was never meant to experience apartheid or any sort of discrimination, has now written a book that archives her experiences in this so-called free country that we live in.”Her performances are delivered in an idiosyncratic and eccentric style, a very modern mix of meme-culture, quirky slang and unapologetic youth coolness.The poem 1994: A Love Poem is an acidic tongue-in-cheek take on South Africa’s middle-class obsession with Nelson Mandela and how it is very different in real life interactions between black and white South Africans: “I want someone who’s going to look at me and love me the way white people look at and love Mandela. You don’t know love until you’ve been loved like Mandela/ You don’t know betrayal until you’ve been loved like Mandela/ You don’t know [expletive] until you’ve been loved like Mandela.”Koleka Putuma is a South African spoken word poet who uses poetry, music and the power of the internet to give African women a voice. (Image: Andiswa Mkosi)Her poems celebrate young Africanness, yet mourn the deep-rooted problems of gender politics. In the poem Black Solidarity, Putuma explores the hypocrisy of sexism and patriarchy, particularly in social and political activism: “How come your revolution always wants to go rummaging through my underwear?… How come references to your revolution are limited to Biko and Fanon and Malcolm?/ Do you read?/ Your solidarity, it seems, is anchored by undermining black woman’s struggle.”Speaking during a Johannesburg launch of her book at the end of June 2017, Putuma explained her position: “I used to look at my mother and my auntie’s choices and think, ‘Why would you stay? Why would you choose that in that particular situation?’ But after writing this book and having experienced things as a black woman, I learned that, in that particular situation, your mother and aunt chose silence so that they could live, or so that there could be peace in the house, so that they could eat.”Established South African poet Lebo Mashile calls Putuma a revolutionary new voice in South African poetry. “She’s exploding the model of South African literature, which is a wonderful thing. She is emerging, and with authority, to claim her space and audience. The work that [she is] doing is very necessary. [She is] opening the way for [young people, particularly girls and young women to find their voices]. Ten to 15 years from now, they will reference and thank [her].”For a more in-depth look at Putuma’s work, visit her website and Facebook page.Source: Okay AfricaWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

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Bruce Sterling and Vernor Vinge on Augmented Reality in the Workplace

first_imgklint finley I told Sterling and Vinge that I thought that apart from gaming, AR would be most useful to professionals. Yet the only widespread use of AR that I could think of outside of gaming and marketing is in the military. I asked Sterling and Vinge whether they thought AR would be more useful in the civilian workplace than in consumer technology. “The consumer coverage hasn’t covered the most important applications in that domain either,” Vinge said. “AR will be enormously useful in both domains, with the consumer end providing social acceptance and product pricing to further encourage workplace changes.”Sterling pointed out that “Every medium in a capitalist society has ‘marketing gimmicks.’ TV, cinema, Internet, newspapers, recorded music, even sci-fi novels have gimmicks. Even if AR gets terrifically good at doing something more serious, those marketing gimmicks are not going away.”Sterling also emphasized that AR needn’t be a stand-alone industry. There’s room for many technologies that apply the general idea of AR.How AR Can Be Used in the Workplace Tags:#enterprise#mobile Miami University’s Augmented Reality Research Group developed an Android app that helps librarians find mis-shelved books and determine where they should go. It’s a simple idea, and one that could save librarians hours of drudgery (or cost many temps their jobs, but that’s another story). Sounds a lot more useful than virtual mirrors for trying on sunglasses, doesn’t it? As I’ve written before, I’ve long been of the mind that AR will be more useful in the workplace than as a consumer technology. And based on this poll, most of you can imagine uses for AR in your workplace. So when will we start seeing more business-focused AR?On May 17th and 18th, technology thinkers such as Jaron Lanier, Bruce Sterling, Vernor Vinge and Will Wright and many more and will gather at are2011 in Santa Clara, CA to discuss AR’s present and future. Workplace AR will be among the topics discussed.I won’t be able to attend the event, but Sterling and Vinge were kind enough to share some thoughts on the future of AR in the workplace with us in advance of the event.Business vs. Pleasure IT + Project Management: A Love Affair 3 Areas of Your Business that Need Tech Nowcenter_img When asked about the state of workplace AR apps, Sterling said “It’s a lot easier and cheaper just to paste-up a fun ‘floatie’ or augmented animation than it is to, say, carefully label all the oddly-shaped parts on an assembly line, or, worse yet, all the oddly-shaped parts inside a human being undergoing surgery.” However, he did point to a couple companies industrial applications for AR: Metaio and Seac02. Vinge says he looks forward to the demos at are2011, suspecting that there will be some new applications we haven’t heard of yet.Demo of an anatomy app created by MetaverseOne. You can see more of this app in this video.As to where AR will be most useful, Vinge suggests medicine, specifically endoscopic surgery, and high-tech equipment maintenance. For workers in the white collar world, Vinge says “AR lets the worker see the reality that is specifically important to the job at hand.”“The overlay capability is used in conjunction with all our databases and analysis and networking, and I think we shouldn’t try to separate these things when we think of applications,” Vinge says. “The combination eliminates much of what we currently regard as the back office. Where back office folks are still needed they may be like a real-time presence sitting virtually at the shoulder of front office people. The resulting front office ismagically effective.”What’s Next?What’s holding AR back? Sterling says “It’s just really hard to pin virtual imagery on real three-dimensional spaces in real-time. That’s not a computationally trivial problem. Most AR devices and services we’ve seen to date are clumsy workarounds for a deep and thorny problem.”Vinge says there’s a lack of “sufficiently accurate location and time information about the objects and people in the work/play space.” He also says there need to be improvements in data processing and communications infrastructure to enable AR applications.Vinge suggests AR developers focus on improving accuracy, as well as building APIs for their applications and working on the social acceptability of head-up displays.Sterling has one other piece of advice for AR developers: “PaaaAAAArrrtaaay! If you can’t have a good time with it now, you probably never will!” Related Posts Massive Non-Desk Workforce is an Opportunity fo… Cognitive Automation is the Immediate Future of…last_img read more

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5 Tips from the Pros for Adapting Books into Film Scripts

first_imgInterested in adapting books into screenplays? Follow these professional tips to create practical adaptations for the big screen.Cover image from Trumbo (via Bleecker Street).Writing a script can be hard work. It takes a lot to put pen to paper (or even just open Final Draft) and build a story from scratch, develop a narrative, define characters and conflicts, and tie it all together with a nice thematic and cinematic bow.It would make sense for screenwriters and filmmakers to gravitate towards stories that are already tried and true and popular with audiences — as is the case with books. From canonical classics to modern bestsellers, books make great fodder for screenplay adaptations.That is, until, you dive into one yourself. Adapting books is harder than it looks, and it can be one of the most difficult and frustrating tasks for filmmakers and writers alike. But, fear not, here are five pieces of adapting advice from the pros who have been there and successfully done just that.1. Find the Narrative ArcsImage from Life of Pi (via 20th Century Fox).I’ve written screenplays and teleplays adapting novels, and it is admittedly hard to distill the essence of a story from a world in which it exists as words and impressions guiding the pure imagination of the audience, and a visual medium that is defined by what you see and hear as well as what you don’t see or hear. You have to be able to find the narrative and the arcs, and lift them out of the book in one piece through interpretation into precise visual and audio descriptions.This first piece of advice, which comes from professional screenwriter and film critic for Forbes Mark Hughes (via the Huffington Post), jumps into the crux of the process for adapting long-form novels into film- and television-ready scripts. At the end of the day, the narrative arc is the most important (and often most memorable) part of a book. It stands to reason that when working a book into a script, this should be your first and primary focus for beginning an adaption.2. Resist the Urge of Voice OverImage from Big Fish (via Sony Pictures).I think one reason that many adaptations rely on voice-over is that the filmmakers never found a way to externalize the essence of the novel they were adapting. Instead of making a movie that could stand on its own, they created the cinematic equivalent of a book-on-tape. To me, these movies always ‘feel’ written, a huge limitation.To many screenwriters who work in adaptions, the allure of using an “author’s voice-over” makes sense. But, as John August points out (who certainly knows a thing or two about adaption writing with credits which include Big Fish, Charlie’s Angels, and Charlie and Chocolate Factory — to name a few), it’s a crutch that can actually negate a work’s authenticity and essence by creating that “book-on-tape” feeling, which is not ideal for films.3. Don’t Be Afraid to CutImage from The Fellowship of the Ring (via Warner Bros).Cutting happens in layers. First identify the theme and the protagonist’s outer motivation. If the subplots don’t support them, cut them, along with any minor characters that are distracting. Then layer the outer motivation with the hero’s inner motivation. Again, if a plot point has nothing to do with either, cut it.In an article on her website Script Mag, Jeanne Veillette Bowerman breaks down her process of adapting the New York Times Best Seller and Pulitzer Prize-winning book Slavery by Another Name into a feature film. In particular, she outlines the brutal mindset needed to cut a book down judiciously as “storylines that support a 400-page book cannot possibly fit into 110 pages of script” — and to “get your chainsaw ready to start pruning.”4. Avoid Long Thinking Image from The Great Gatsby (via Warner Bros).Some tribes of American Indians had a word to describe those of their brethren who sat around thinking deep thoughts. Literally the word translated to The Disease of Long-Thinking. Quite often, lead characters in novels suffer from this disease. When essential plot information is presented only in a character’s thought or in the character’s internal world, one solution is to give this character a sounding board, another character, to which his thoughts can be voiced aloud. Either adapt an existing character from the novel or create a new one. Challenges to screenwriters adapting books will continuously present themselves throughout the process. As we learn from Lynne Pembroke and Jim Kalergis from coverscript.com, you can cut novel characters’ tendency to “long-think” internal problems and thoughts — or better attribute them to another character.5. Show, Don’t TellImage from The Giver (via The Weinstein Company).Screenplays are about showing everything on the sleeve. There is some very minor telling (in the form of montages), but ‘show, don’t tell’ is a must in this purely visual medium. Yet novels allow for far more telling than showing. This is naturally difficult for screenwriters, because the script development process rejects long exposition and non-visual storytelling. Learning how to utilize lengthier exposition requires a whole new mindset.Perhaps the best piece of advice for screenwriters for adaptions or originals is in this article by accomplished screenwriter Jeff Lyons on the importance of “showing, not telling” an audience what is happening. As the differences between watching a film and reading a book are quite obvious, it can still be tricky to remember that visual information can both be more concise and entertaining at the same time.For more scripting and screenwriting resources, check out some of the links below.6 Free Scriptwriting Resources for Your Next Screenplay8 Screenwriting Tips for the Emerging Writer9 Sites for Free Movie ScriptsScreenwriting Archiveslast_img read more

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Spending Time in the Woodshed

first_imgWhen I was 17 years old, I started a rock-n-roll band. I was a singer, and singers need other players. My brother played bass, and our friend played drums. We needed a guitar player, and there were plenty around.You didn’t know the kids that played guitar. You never saw them. They were like ghosts, really. They fell in love with the guitar, and then they disappeared into their bedrooms. They spent every waking moment, listening to their heroes and learning to play their songs. They took lessons to speed up the process. And after a couple years, they emerged from their bedrooms as guitarists—and some of them emerged as shredders. For the most part, your band was never going to be better than your guitarist or your singer.This process is known as woodshedding. It’s doing the lonely work of learning your craft, putting in the hours, becoming adept, and eventually, mastery.Woodshedding doesn’t get the attention it deserves. Hell, mastery doesn’t get the appreciation it deserves in an age that prefers instant gratification, the putting on of appearances, and dabbling. Why do the work when there are so many promises of results without having to do the work.This isn’t a post about sales, leadership, or coaching. It’s a post about success. The one variable of success that gets far too little attention is mastery. What looks like raw talent isn’t often what it appears to be.You never see the time the successful person spent studying their craft. You never see the time they spent being coached by masters. You don’t get to see them trying something, failing, and trying again, perfecting their craft. You never get to witness the critiques they received when something isn’t working and requires dramatic improvement. You don’t see the early mornings or the late nights.The success that you see was built in the woodshed long before you were aware of the person who has mastered their craft. How much time are you spending woodshedding? Essential Reading! Get my 3rd book: Eat Their Lunch “The first ever playbook for B2B salespeople on how to win clients and customers who are already being serviced by your competition.” Buy Nowlast_img read more

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In and around your city

first_imgA checklist on where to eat and what to shop for.Event Saputara Monsoon FestivalWhile the rest of the country is steeped in drought, Saputara has been flourishing, having received its fair share of rainfall. To celebrate the rains, the monsoon festival will be held this season. An expansive tent is,A checklist on where to eat and what to shop for.EventSaputara Monsoon FestivalWhile the rest of the country is steeped in drought, Saputara has been flourishing, having received its fair share of rainfall. To celebrate the rains, the monsoon festival will be held this season. An expansive tent is to be set up to display tribal art, photography from the region and also host a Warli painting competition. Apart from this, a range of adventure sports activities will also be organized. The event is being put together by Tourism Corporation of Gujarat Ltd (TCGL) and visitors heading to Saputara can avail a TCGL tourist package. The package is all inclusive and apart from monsoon festival related events, it will also include visits to the Mahal forest, Shabri Dham, Vaghai botanical garden, Girmal falls and Vansada. Visit gujarattourism.com for more details about the monsoon festival.Ongoing till: September 1.Price: Rs 450 for a one day tour; Rs 3500 for three day long tour packages.Where: Valsad Railway station which is about 384 kms from Ahmedabad.ArtArt on EMIThe Marvel Art Gallery will now be selling works by legendary artists on a payment model of EMIs (Every Month Instalment), thus making it much easier for the common man to get his hands on great art. Among their collection are masterpieces by the likes of MF Husain, Akbar Padamsee and SH Raza apart from works by various artists including Haku Shah, Shanti Dave, Manoj Kachangal, Bansi Khatri and Harshil Patel.Where: Marvel Art GalleryPvt.Ltd, Shapath I and II SG Road.Tel: 079 26870256.RestaurantadvertisementGlobal PlatterSoftly lit interiors with groovy jazz playing in the background set the mood at this latest entrant to the cafe scene in Ahmedabad, Turquoise Villa. This cafe opened in May and since then has been slowly yet surely becoming a favourite evening haunt for many Amdavadis. The cafe is designed to please with its turquoise blue and pearl white theme that might remind you of a villa you saw on a Greek isle. The seating space here is tastefully done with a mix of king size sofas and low rise chairs. The outdoor seating area is highly recommended on a pleasant day and is sure to set the scene for many lovely dinner dates.Their menu, despite being vegetarian, is a mishmash of global influences fusing many diverse tastes into one. Here you’ll find street food ranging from Delhi’s Chandni Chowk chaat specialities to New York style pizzas, from Latin American street food delights such as empanadas and tacos to Indonesian nasi goreng, or from a French creme brule to our very own Mumbaiya gola. A perfect example of fusion food can also be seen in the pav-bhaji fondue which is a hot seller here. Have the local Manek Chowk chilla chaat or perfectly done mezze and egg crepes. The jasmine iced tea is a great thirst quencher that goes well with any of their dishes.Average meal for two: Rs 300 to Rs 500.Where: Center Point, Panchvati, Ahmedabad.Tel: 079 40373000.last_img read more

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Ravi Shastri slams agenda-driven criticism: Will give it back even if critic is a legend

first_imgRavi Shastri is not known to pull back punches and the India head coach has made it clear that he wouldn’t change his ways if he feels that criticism directed at the national team is “agenda-driven”.Speaking to ‘The Daily Telegraph’, Shastri also complimented Virat Kohli, describing the skipper as someone who comes “closest to Vivian Richards” in the manner he bats.On the criticism, there was no direct reference to the critics he considers agenda-driven.”You expect it. I am one of those that if it is constructive, then fine. If I find it is agenda-driven, I don’t care who the individual is, then I will throw a punch back straightaway. I mean it. I don’t care if he is a legend or a normal person. If I feel I have to punch back I will,” Shastri told former England captain Michael Vaughan, who was interviewing him for the newspaper.The most recent criticism against the team came from the legendary Sunil Gavaskar, who had questioned the team combination and training methods after India’s defeat in the Perth Test, which according to Shastri, was akin to “firing blanks” sitting million miles away.India’s greatest opener then responded by saying that it were these blanks that pushed the team into doing well at Melbourne.Virat Kohli is more on your face: ShastriWhen asked to compare Kohli and Sachin Tendulkar, Shastri said the Mumbai maestro was “more composed” and in a zone while Kohli is more “in your face”.”Yesterday someone asked me if there are any similarities between Sachin [Tendulkar] and Virat. I said there were plenty. Let’s start with work ethic,” he said.advertisement”It is doing the hard yards, looking ugly in the nets and sacrificing important things for your cricket. It is staying in the zone. No excuses. No pointing fingers at others. If you make a mistake, then own up. They do that,” Shastri added.He then cited the difference.”Virat can be in your face. He is the closest a player has come to Vivian Richards in the way he bats. That ‘in your face’ approach with fast bowlers and any opponent. He is also prepared to do hard work and be ugly. That is part of his batting he learned in England,” said the Indian coach.The best aspect of Kohli’s personality, according to Shastri, is his mindset which is pretty similar to his own. Also the fact that he is very caring of his teammates also makes him the “role model” that he is, said Shastri.”He is very caring with his team-mates and just a fantastic role model. He has achieved greatness but to still be in the zone and being humble and hungry and wanting Test cricket makes my admiration for him grow more and more,” he said.Shastri lauds Kohli for promoting Test cricketKohli had recently urged youngsters to focus more on becoming good Test players rather than concentrating on shorter formats. The coach, like on many other issues, seemed to be on the same page with his skipper.”In our country where everything is driven by T20, IPL and one-day cricket to have an individual like him to put the onus on Test cricket more than any format of the game is massive because all the young kids want to emulate him. That is the biggest thing to come out of it.”If Virat Kohli said: ‘I am bored with Test cricket’ you will see the impact it would have on the game, especially in India. For him to enjoy it and enjoy the things that go with Test cricket, like the pressure an individual feels during a Test match, is great.Also Read | It takes some serious marbles: Ravi Shastri on Virat Kohli’s captaincyAlso Read | Who will take my interview on Chahal TV? Yuzvendra Chahal wonders after 6-wicket haulAlso See:last_img read more

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