Nothing good comes from Tuesday’s brawl for Orioles

first_imgBALTIMORE — Yordano Ventura was the culprit in Tuesday’s brawl between the Orioles and the Kansas City Royals, but don’t be fooled by the crowd’s chants for Manny Machado after he charged the mound.There was nothing to be proud of from the confrontation. Nothing good comes from this for Machado or the Orioles, even if they weren’t the ones at fault. And let’s not sing the 23-year-old’s praises when it was just two years ago that he embarrassed himself and the organization by being on the wrong side of another conflict by flinging a bat at the opposition. He has his own reputation for being a bit of a hothead, which may or may not have made him a prime target for Ventura’s behavior.If you want to see a fight, check out a UFC pay-per-view or even WWE Monday Night Raw, which offers more believable grappling than what you’ll find in 90 percent of baseball brawls. I’d much prefer using this space to focus on a 9-1 victory in which the Orioles clubbed four home runs to improve to 11 games over .500 and remain in first place in the AL East instead of the rubbish we witnessed on Tuesday — no matter who’s to blame.In a perfect world, Machado bites his tongue in anger and walks to first base as the Royals starter is ejected for the deplorable act of using a 99 mph fastball — his fastest pitch of the night — as a weapon, but you can understand an emotional reaction when your livelihood is being threatened. The 23-year-old shortstop wasn’t entirely blameless and did play a part in escalating the hostility in the previous at-bat when Ventura twice came inside without hitting him, but no amount of jawing warranted being hit in the bottom of the fifth inning.The real problem is Major League Baseball’s willingness to allow these types of incidents to continue with little consequence. Instead of pimping highlights of the skirmish via social media, the league should crack down on pitchers who decide to punish someone because they were terrible at their job in the way Ventura was on Tuesday night.With his own past likely being considered, Machado will be suspended for a handful of games and should be for charging the mound and throwing a punch, but what will the consequence be for Ventura, who committed a more dangerous act and already has a concerning history in his brief career? A suspension that will likely amount to one or two missed starts?Give me a break with that slap on the wrist.Adam Jones may have made the most cogent point of the night when citing how Ventura faces no threat of stepping to the plate to face the same music that he dished out. Two wrongs don’t make a right, but at least it’s a deterrent that exists in the National League to help offset baseball’s lack of a backbone over matters such as these.Manager Buck Showalter said after Tuesday’s win that there were no apparent injuries stemming from the brawl, but we’ve seen them occur before, including one that nearly cost Cal Ripken his consecutive games streak in 1993. Machado’s anger was understandable, but he also put himself in further danger and his teammates in harm’s way when he charged the mound and the playoff-hopeful Orioles will now be without their best player for some number of games in the near future.But more importantly, Machado could have been seriously injured by a 99 mph missile from Ventura, a reality that needs to be taken more seriously by the league’s decision-makers. More extreme consequences for pitchers intentionally hitting someone would go a long way in not only making the game safer but also putting players’ minds at ease that they don’t have to take matters into their own hands.There just has to be a better way than players and teams policing themselves because “that’s the way it’s always been done.”Perhaps everyone would be a little more cordial if they knew they’d be banned for many more games and lose much more money when getting caught up in such nonsense.Make no mistake, Ventura was the villain and the big loser on Tuesday night.But that doesn’t make Machado the winner, either.And we primarily have baseball to thank for that.last_img read more

Continue reading

Manchester United fans vote on Jose Mourinho’s future at Old Trafford

first_imgAdvertisement toNBA Finals | Brooklyn Vs54tj9Wingsuit rodeo📽Sindre E9xmi( IG: @_aubreyfisher @imraino ) tq00cWould you ever consider trying this?😱6rk5wsCan your students do this? 🌚455mRoller skating! Powered by Firework Advertisement While Jose Mourinho has hinted that he wants to remain at Manchester United till the end of his contract in 2020, fans at Old Trafford cast their votes to settle the crucial question of whether Mourinho should remain or leave as Manchester United manager.As Mourinho was busy managing his side against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, supporters flocked to Old Trafford to have their say on Jose Mourinho’s future as voting got underway in The Sportsman’s Manchester Referendum.Advertisement In a first-of-its-kind ballot, the voting is believed to continue running throughout the focal week for The Special One as his side prepare to face Juventus at home in the Champions League on Tuesday night, shutting at midnight after the match against Everton at Old Trafford on Sunday.Many voters have made their voice heard,  casting votes online and by post with early polling showing ‘leave’ ahead at 54%.Advertisement There were opinions from both parties as a fan wearing a ‘Mourinho Out’ shirt said: “I’m a die-hard member of the Mourinho Out camp. He’s more than had his time here and the sooner he leaves and we strike a deal with Zidane the better.”I’m confident the people will see sense and ignore the spin from the ‘In’ side who blame everyone but the gaffer for our current dire situation.”However, one, John Kelly, 39 spoke in Mourinho’s favour:  “It’s the board that needs to go not Jose. He’s one of the best managers in the world and with a bit more money and some time he can turn the corner.”The out campaigners are getting vocal so I urge everyone who wants him to stay to come and show their support and make their voices heard.”Harris Simpson of The Sportsman, the Manchester-based publisher behind the campaign, commented: “The Mourinho In/Out debate has never been more intense so we thought to settle it once and for all we needed to let the people have their say.”Here is the link of the poll from The Sportsman’s Twitter account:    Advertisementlast_img read more

Continue reading

Headhunter ready for the ring

first_imgRamesh ‘The Headhunter’ Habib believes he was born to fight. “It’s the main thing I’m good at,” he says, “That’s…[To read the rest of this story Subscribe or Login to the Gazette Access Pass] Thanks for reading the Pakenham Berwick Gazette. Subscribe or Login to read the rest of this content with the Gazette Digital Access Pass subscription. By Danielle Kutchel last_img

Continue reading

Award for Mandela Bridge

first_img11 November 2004The spectacular Nelson Mandela Bridge, one of Johannesburg’s newest landmarks, has been given an award for outstanding civil engineering achievement by the South African Institute of Civil Engineers (SAICE).The Nelson Mandela Bridge was judged to be “the most outstanding civil engineering project achievement in the technical excellence category” for 2003, and also won the SAICE Award of the Century in the construction category.The largest cable-stayed bridge in southern Africa, opened by Nelson Mandela on 20 July 2003, cost R38-million and took about two years to construct.The bridge is part of a R300-million inner city renewal programme spearheaded by Blue IQ, a Gauteng provincial economic development initiative, though the project was handled by the Johannesburg Roads Agency.The 295-metre bridge crosses over 40 railway lines to link Braamfontein in the north with the Johannesburg central business district and Newtown to the south.The bridge is aesthetically positioned between two other major developments in Johannesburg’s “cultural arc” – the Newtown Cultural Precinct and the Constitutional Hill Precinct in Braamfontein – carrying two lanes of traffic, two sidewalks for pedestrians and a lane for bicycles.The asymmetrical dual-pylon cable-stay bridge is made up of a 66-metre north back span, a 176-metre main span and a 42-metre south back span, giving a total length of 284 metres. The north pylon is 42 metres high and the south pylon 27 metres high, creating a delicate balance and an interesting visual appeal.Approximately 4 000 cubic metres of concrete and 1 000 tons of structural steel were used to construct the bridge, with around 500 tons of reinforcing steel cast into the concrete.The award, a mountable inscribed plaque, was presented to the project managers of the bridge at a function in Midrand, Johannesburg on 27 October.The SAICE, founded in 1903, is a voluntary organisation with 8 000 members from the civil engineering industry. The body promotes the improvement of quality within the industry, offering capacity building programmes and rewarding good practice.Source: City of Johannesburglast_img read more

Continue reading

Pfizer, South African university in research partnership

first_img26 June 2014 US pharmaceutical giant Pfizer is set to partner with South Africa’s North-West University in preclinical research, a key field in the development of new drugs, following the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the company and the university this week. According to a joint statement, the partnership could include the use of Pfizer’s genetically modified animal models for testing the safety and efficacy of a range of new drugs, including treatments for cancer, heart disease and immune system disorders. Joint research projects will be conducted at North-West University’s (NWU’s) Preclinical Drug Development Platform, a state-of-the-art facility with a permanent staff of 14 scientists that functions as a national study platform, supplying researchers across South Africa with the infrastructure for preclinical studies. The facility was established, and is largely financed, by the Department of Science and Technology in order to enable a faster, more efficient drug discovery process in the country. The memorandum of understanding was signed by the facility’s director, Anne Grobler, and Pfizer’s Gabriela Cezar, at Pfizer’s R&D site in La Jolla, California on Monday. Mikael Dolsten, president of worldwide research and development at Pfizer, said the company hoped the partnership would produce scientific and medical advances for patients in South Africa and beyond, adding: “We salute the South African government for fostering an environment that encourages and rewards investments in innovative research.” Grobler said NWU was “enthusiastic about the milestones we may be able to reach in the areas of infectious and chronic diseases that are so relevant to our South African society”. Mmboneni Muofhe, deputy director-general of technology innovation in the Department of Science and Technology, said the development of South Africa’s pharmaceutical sector was a key component of the government’s national bio-economy strategy, “so we are delighted to witness the very first step in this new partnership”. SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

Continue reading

McLaren embraces autonomous cars, but wants humans in control

first_imgFor Self-Driving Systems, Infrastructure and In… Related Posts British luxury automotive manufacturer McLaren has signalled an interest in adding autonomous car functionality to its cars in the future.In an interview with Motoring, McLaren’s global corporate communications manager Duncan Forrester said the automaker may build autonomous safety features into the car, but promised that drivers would still be able to take over control with one button press.See Also: Will autonomous cars kill motorsports?McLaren is one of the first ‘luxury’ automakers to express an interest in autonomous cars. Ferrari and Lamborghini have been silent on the subject, most likely due to their main market being customers that want to drive the car, not see it drive itself.“We have to find our way and I suspect what will probably happen is that some of the main roads, where safety is difficult, we will have an autonomous mode. You press a button and everybody is on autonomous mode,” said Forrester. “Then you get to back roads or wherever and turn it off and go and have some fun.”Expect the usual McLaren design…and pricetagClearly, McLaren don’t want to take the fun away from owning their ridiculously expensive cars, the cheapest costing a cool $187,000.At the same time, the automaker sees opportunity with autonomous functionality. It may interest people that enjoy driving on weekends or on freeways, but don’t want to steer their car during insufferable 5 mph traffic jams in city centers.The safety aspect is a good way for McLaren to insert the functionality without polarizing its market. Forrester didn’t say if McLaren were actively working on the functionality, or if it plans to partner with one of the many tech companies working on self-driving systems.Either way, it seems unlikely that McLaren will outfit its next car with autonomous systems. We’ll probably hear about it after the major automakers—BMW, Audi, and Ford—launch their own autonomous cars. 5 Ways IoT can Help to Reduce Automatic Vehicle… Break the Mold with Real-World Logistics AI and…center_img David Curry Tags:#autonomous cars#Formula 1#Internet of Things#IoT#McLaren#Self-Driving IT Trends of the Future That Are Worth Paying A…last_img read more

Continue reading

Healthcare Use Cases for Blockchain: 5 Key Factors for Success

first_img“For more Health and Life Sciences related information, you can read more of my articles on IT Peer Network, or visit me on LinkedIn.” Many health and life sciences organizations are now bought into the concept of blockchain and are currently researching suitable use cases to implement this technology. Below I share five key characteristics I am seeing in successful blockchain implementations of use cases.1. It’s About the Network, Not a DatabaseBlockchain is a type of B2B middleware. It is not a replacement for a database within a given organization. It is relatively quick to come up with a blockchain use case. It takes longer to come up with a business network around that use case. That is why near-term opportunities with blockchain center around existing B2B networks, for example, clearinghouses, or drug supply chains, etc. Longer term, new and revolutionary use cases for blockchain will emerge, with new types of participants and networks, but these will take longer to establish. Existing B2B networks may have an intermediary. Rather than disintermediate the intermediary what is more likely to occur is for blockchain to change the role of the intermediary from a potential bottleneck of transactions and single point of failure to more of an enablement, facilitator, and support role.2. Clear Definition of Use CasesAn essential ingredient for success with blockchain is a clear definition of use cases, participants in the B2B network, and value props to all stakeholders. In contrast, an approach of “let’s put all the data on blockchain and figure out later how to use it” is likely to fail for many reasons, including a lack of business buy-in, privacy and security concerns, regulatory/data protection law/compliance requirements, and potential performance and scalability challenges for large datasets. A lot of the value props asserted for blockchain tend to be idealistic. Businesses need to have real business value props and ROI in order to incentivize and motivate their participation in sourcing and consuming transactions to/from a blockchain. These incentives, motivations, and ROI are already established and well quantified in existing B2B networks which is again why existing B2B networks are better near-term opportunities for blockchain. Regardless, business teams need to be engaged early in blockchain initiatives.3. Throughput and ScalabilityBlockchains typically have throughput in the hundreds, or thousands, of transactions per second range, depending on particulars of their implementation, including in particular the consensus algorithm. When analyzing potential use cases for blockchain, do a “back of the envelope” estimate of peak and sustained transaction throughput for your use case and see if your use case estimated throughput is in the right order of magnitude range for blockchain. For example, if you require millions of transactions per second then blockchain may not be the best option. Sometimes techniques such as queuing transactions, expressing urgent and high priority transactions through the queue, and batching transactions into blocks can be used to increase throughput. Sometimes, as in the case of batching, this can trade-off latency for higher throughput.4. Minimal But Sufficient DataData put on the blockchain “B2B middleware” between organizations in a B2B network goes outside of the perimeter of your healthcare organization and is exposed to new risks to its confidentiality, integrity, and availability. Data on blockchains may also encounter new regulatory or data protection law compliance requirements depending on the type of data put on the blockchain and locations of the blockchain network nodes, or endpoints where the decentralized ledgers and data live. Large data types e.g. large images, genomes, etc could have a considerable impact on the performance of your blockchain and therefore are generally best left off-chain, referenced by pointers and hashcodes (of the off-chain data to protect integrity) placed on the blockchain. These concerns can have major impacts on the use cases and data on the blockchain and therefore can’t be dealt with as a “band-aid” after the blockchain is implemented. Privacy, security, and compliance teams need to be engaged early in blockchain initiatives. See my earlier blog Healthcare Blockchain: What Goes On Chain Stays on Chain for more on this subject.5. Stable DataBlocks in blockchain are immutable. That means that once a block is written it (including the data within it) stays as is for the life of that blockchain. It cannot be changed or deleted. This is one of the foundational characteristics of blockchain. It protects the integrity of the data on the blockchain and is a key characteristic of blockchain that helps build trust in a blockchain network. If your use case involves data that changes frequently or may need to be deleted, then consider whether blockchain is the right solution for the use case. “Amendments” can be done to data on a blockchain by adding a new block to the blockchain with amended data that effectively supersedes the original. Similarly, “deleting” a block can be done by adding a new block to the blockchain that marks an earlier block as “deleted”. However, in both of these cases, the old blocks continue to live as-is earlier in the blockchain.Regardless, a use case that involves data that changes or needs to be deleted frequently is going to be a very chatty blockchain and this can have performance, throughput, and scalability ramifications. If you are subject to “patients right to be forgotten” type data protection laws and requirements, this may compel you to put some specific types of data off-chain including PII (personally identifiable information) so that in the event that a patient on the blockchain needs to be forgotten, the PII off-chain can be deleted and the opaque, unique identifier, or pointers to the “forgotten” patients PII that remain on-chain (and cannot be changed) is effectively de-identified and anonymized.What kinds of challenges and best practices are you seeing for picking and developing use cases for blockchain in healthcare?last_img read more

Continue reading

Bowlsby on ESPN+ Production: ‘Exactly the Same’ as Other Games

first_imgIf you watched the Oklahoma State-Kansas State game on ESPN+ like I did, well, it was a ride.From a camera angle on field goals and extra points that looked as if it was being shot from the moon to an outage at one point when OSU got in the red zone (ALL THE JOKES!), the entire production was closer to the amateur end of the pro-am scale than any of us would like.“I don’t have an answer for you as to why that would be,” Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby told the Wichita Eagle. “Probably something was malfunctioning, because the production is exactly the same as they are doing on every other game. At least it’s supposed to be.”Well if it is, that wasn’t it.And listen, I’m not anti-ESPN+. I’m not against the idea of a digital network for the Big 12. I think it’s at the very least intriguing, and at most it has more upside than Ja Morant. But boy, it felt at times like I was watching something a university produced and not something a multi-billion dollar organization with an impetus to get into the digital space produced.Here’s my biggest issue, beyond all the, uh, not super compelling announcing and camera angles, lack of yellow first-down lines and upside down microphones. My biggest issue is actually with the picture. It’s not great. If it’s great and it flows and I can rewind and fast-forward easily and cut GIFs and do bloggy things then I can deal with all the other stuff. That stuff is secondary or tertiary.YouTube TV figured this out. That’s my new cable. It actually doesn’t cost much less than my old cable, but as a team at PFB we can put multiple accounts on there, watch from any device and rewind and fast forward easily. More importantly, it’s crystal-clear and pretty much always works. I love YouTube TV.ESPN+ has a real opportunity here to appeal to the digital generation by nailing the picture quality and offering features like multiple times (10 sec., 15 sec., 30 sec.) to rewind and fast-forward or even a button where you can cut a GIF to put on social while you’re watching. Forget $4.99, I’d pay $499.99 a month for that! (Maybe I’m alone!). The point is that there’s some space for ESPN to race out in front while using the Big 12 as a guinea pig.They have some room to experiment before everyone hops on board, and I hope they do. But what I’ve seen this season has felt less like they’re excited about experimenting and more like they’re just trying to get by.I realize it sounds like I’m just popping off about first-world problems — and there’s probably some truth to that — but as a consumer there is a standard I’ve come to expect in 2019 that ESPN+ hasn’t yet met. It’s just basic business. I think everyone — including ESPN+ — would agree with that.Here’s what the network told the Wichita Eagle.“During Saturday’s Kansas State at Oklahoma State game, our production encountered issues that affected the viewing experience of our fans during brief portions of the game. We apologize for the problems.”“The issues were offsite routing and transmission issues, as well as lightning in the Stillwater area, and were not related to our Big 12 Now on ESPN+ platform. We are working to ensure these isolated issues do not happen again.”Fine. Yeah, that’s ok. I don’t care about any of that. Those things happen. What I care about more is quality of production (announcing, graphics, rhythm to the broadcast) and — like I mentioned above — quality of the picture and sound.Disney acquired a stake in a company called BAMTech a few years ago, which is ostensibly what they run their broadcasts through. BAMTech is a spin-off of MLB Advanced Media. I don’t do MLB games on Apple TV or anything like that, but I can’t imagine the quality is at the level that ESPN+ has been for Big 12 games thus far.One thing I hadn’t thought much of that was brought up in that article above is that double-digit OSU basketball games are going to be on ESPN+ starting in about a month. If those look anything like what I’ve been watching thus far on the football side, it’s going to be … interesting.And listen, this is likely a speedbump in the long connecting highway between analog and digital. ESPN is smart and resourced and will figure all of this out (probably). Plus, producing in the digital space is really, really hard. But it’s not been an ideal start for the Big 12-ESPN digital relationship, and the unfortunate part is that everyone in this triangular relationship has already gotten what they’ve wanted except for fans watching the games at home.h/t Wichita Eagle While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.last_img read more

Continue reading

YouTube redux: recycle or you’re lazy

first_imgUPDATE 11/14Wise Scott of Catalyst has such a good comment I’m elevating it to a PS to my post:If a Great Environmental Ad Plays in the Forest and No One is There to Hear It…. Does it Really Matter? This is a great ad – but like many non-profits if there is no marketing strategy you have wasted valuable time and resources. While YouTube may seem like a phenomenon – it is not! People that have networking skills and list building skills thrive. And those that do not– do not! I cannot emphasize this enough. Simply putting out an ad on YouTube does not drive traffic to the ad. Organizations need to drive traffic to the ad themselves– and people need to start forwarding the link to their friends in order to generate buzz. I know this seems like obvious stuff– but shockingly few organizations spend money in marketing these campaigns or generating buzz about their new ad. Organizations need to do more to get young voters engaged in their cause than simply put up an ad on YouTube. I got some heated reaction to my last YouTube post, so I am ready for some more! Reader of this blog, Kelley has shared her new spot for 18-34-year-old YouTube viewers to encourage recycling. I really like it, because it’s entertaining (and you gotta be on YouTube). And it provides a reward for taking action. That’s my mantra – you have to give people an immediate, relevant, personal reward for taking the action you ask. This spot tells us we get the benefit of not looking like a lazy fool. I think it works — do you? Make Free Online Polls No! I’m ambivalent Yes! Do you like this spot?last_img read more

Continue reading

Modric & Croatia backed to reach semi-finals

first_imgWorld Cup Modric & Croatia backed to reach World Cup semi-finals by ’98 hero Asanovic Naim Beneddra 16:30 6/16/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Luka Modric Croatia European Qualifiers Getty Images World Cup Croatia The former midfielder has happy memories of France 20 years ago and hopes to see a repeat in Russia Former Croatia star Aljosa Asanovic has called for the current national team to surpass the achievements of their 1998 World Cup side.Asanovic was part of the Croatia team that finished third at the World Cup 20 years ago by beating Netherlands in the play-off following a semi-final defeat by hosts France.In Russia this summer, Croatia will face Argentina, Iceland and Nigeria in Group D in a tough first-round pool, but Asanovic believes that Luka Modric et al are capable of emulating the ’98 team by reaching at least the last four. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Perfection from Pulisic: Chelsea’s Captain America has arrived in the Premier League Why always Raheem? ‘Unplayable’ Sterling setting a standard Man City’s other stars need to match ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar “Twenty years later, I have only happy memories of the 1998 edition of the World Cup,” Asanovic told Goal . “Memories of this beautiful adventure with a group of friends.“It was really something fabulous. It was also something unique because, you know, Croatia is only a small country. And, doing what we did, it made us all so proud, so happy. Remembering this tournament is always a pleasure.“But today, too, we have a very good team. Perhaps the best we’ve had, with big stars playing at Real, Barca and Juventus. I hope and believe that this generation will do better than us.“It’s the current selection that deserves all the attention. Pressure and expectations are very important on this team. And that’s normal because there are a lot of great players. And everyone thinks they are good enough to go very far.“And, for me, they can go at least to the semi-finals. In football, anything is possible, and every game is a new challenge. But what is certain is that we have a very strong selection.”Croatia impressed during the group stage of Euro 2016, topping Group D and even beating holders Spain in their final game before losing to eventual winners Portugal in the last 16.In qualifying for this summer’s World Cup, Croatia finished second in their group behind Iceland before easily overcoming Greece in the play-offs and Asanovic feels they are capable of troubling the bigger nations.When asked who the favourites to win the World Cup are, he replied: “There are many. I can mention Germany, France, Spain, Brazil and Argentina. And maybe Croatia will get to the level of these teams.”last_img read more

Continue reading