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We just entered a fundamental new epoch in computing. Maybe. Google scientists said we did. Then their declaration mysteriously vanished.
Last week, a scientific paper by Google and affiliated researchers was uploaded on a NASA website. Its contents – if legitimate – are not insignificant. In the paper, the scientists claim that quantum processors have "reached the regime of quantum supremacy".

That's a hugely important claim, if it's true; a pivotal milestone in quantum computing, ushering in a sort of regime change in the era of computer science.
But before we get too ahead of ourselves – and explain specifically why this is a big deal – a brief disclaimer: the reason we can't be sure of the paper's legitimacy is that shortly after the research article was uploaded, it was withdrawn for reasons unknown.
The news was originally broken by the Financial Times, which reported both seeing the paper and also that it was subsequently taken down.
(The internet being the internet, though, numerous insta-copies were made before the puzzling deletion, and are now freely available to read online.)
Despite the appearance, disappearance, and reappearance of this provocative paper, Google has not officially explained to anybody what's going on, sparking no end of speculation online about what has or hasn't happened. In that sense, it's a little bit like a mini quantum paradox in itself.
Assuming the paper is for real, though – what is quantum supremacy, and why is this important?

Despite the incredible promise of quantum computers, their potential remains largely theoretical, even to this day. Hypothetically speaking, though, in the future, it's predicted that quantum computers will be able to solve problems that are beyond the reach of the classical computers we use today.
Passing such a threshold will be considered proof of 'quantum supremacy'.
"Demonstrating quantum supremacy – that is, demonstrating a quantum computation that cannot be performed on any conventional computer, even the world's best supercomputer – will be a key milestone in demonstrating that quantum computers have the potential to be very powerful, and hopefully very useful," quantum information theorist Stephen Bartlett told ScienceAlert.
Bartlett, who teaches courses in quantum physics and quantum computing at the University of Sydney, isn't involved with Google's quantum research team, and wouldn't comment on the seemingly leaked paper – which may not be finished research, he noted.
But Bartlett did say the research community was anticipating a Google announcement on this in the very near future.
"It is widely believed that quantum supremacy is 'within reach' of the latest generation of quantum devices being built, by Google as well as other companies and universities," Bartlett said.

"Google has been quite vocal publicly in their goals to achieve quantum supremacy."
That vocal stance has hit a whole new level, if the purported research paper is to be believed.
In the paper, the authors claim to have developed an experimental quantum processor called 'Sycamore', which has 53 functional qubits and takes about 200 seconds to solve a particular computational problem.
As part of the experiment, a state-of-the-art supercomputer required approximately 10,000 years to perform the same task.
"This dramatic speedup relative to all known classical algorithms provides an experimental realisation of quantum supremacy on a computational task and heralds the advent of a much-anticipated computing paradigm," the authors write.
"To our knowledge, this experiment marks the first computation that can only be performed on a quantum processor. Quantum processors have thus reached the regime of quantum supremacy."
Again, we can't be entirely sure of the paper's veracity, and even if the research is real (which it certainly looks to be), it may not have yet undergone the necessary peer review to substantiate these kinds of claims.

If the claims prove to be true, Bartlett says there may be broader questions of whether demonstrations like this of quantum supremacy, along the lines of what Google has long been advocating, are really the final word.
"While we believe that some quantum computations will be out of reach of any conventional computer, it is a challenge to argue that any particular set of processes cannot be simulated through some suitable trick," Bartlett told ScienceAlert.
"I suspect that the first claims of quantum supremacy will be followed by a lengthy period of contention, where scientists push the limits of conventional supercomputers to find a way to simulate these claimed demonstrations."
In other words, figuring out ways to rigorously test quantum supremacy could be a supreme challenge in itself.
And even when we objectively pass the quantum supremacy threshold, it may take a long time for quantum computers to become as useful to people as conventional computers, especially since quantum computers have significant technological hurdles that need to be refined.
For quantum computing researcher Steven Flammia, also from the University of Sydney, ongoing improvements in the areas of quantum error correction and fault tolerance are just as important, if not more important, than theoretical attempts to reach supremacy.
"In my mind, those are sort of more significant than this initial quantum supremacy announcement," Flammia told ScienceAlert.
"Once you can achieve error correction and fault tolerance, there's a very strong theoretical reason to believe that there are no 'in principle' obstacles to scaling up large scale useful quantum computation."
When these technologies mature, and quantum supremacy is assured, Bartlett says quantum computers should be able to solve a wide range of problems that are fundamental to modern life.
"Key areas of interest include drug design, developing new high-tech materials, and big implications for information security," Bartlett says.
Within five years, even, it's possible quantum computers will be making meaningful strides in areas of academic research, Flammia thinks, adding that the emerging computational abilities could start helping us to design things like high-temperature superconductors, or better understand the process of nitrogen fixation.
"Those baby steps could be useful to us academics within five years," Flammia says. "I think it's decades before, you know, you're logging into a quantum laptop."
Cautious timeframes and expectations seem entirely reasonable, but in a world where quantum supremacy may have already dawned (watch this space…), who knows what the limits are?
"With devices that are quantum supreme," Bartlett says, "I think we will see the rise of a new generation of quantum-savvy coders and hackers who find applications of quantum computers everywhere."
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  • ALL Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) are illegal.
  • Israel’s long-running policy of settling civilians in occupied territory amounts to a war crime.[1]
This needs to be clearly said now, without ambiguity. The United States government, as sponsor of the current ‘peace talks’ between Israel and Palestinians, must uphold rule of law and human rights. Despite the fact that the U.S. has historically taken the same position as the international community that Israeli settlements within the OPT are illegal, they have chosen to prevaricate in recent years, using words like ‘unhelpful’ or ‘illegitimate’ to describe settlement building by Israel.
This does favors for no one. Not the United States, not Palestinians, and not Israel.
[pullquote text=”Israel’s long-running policy of settling civilians in occupied territory is considered a war crime under the statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC).”]This equivocation does, however, help sustain the cycle of violence and perpetuate further violations of international humanitarian and human rights law.
The West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip all remain under effective control of the Israeli government. The legal obligations for any occupying power are outlined in international humanitarian law (IHL), particularly the Fourth Geneva Convention. Palestinians living in the OPT are considered protected persons under the convention, which Israel has ratified.
IHL stipulates states are not to transfer their own civilians into territory they occupy, or to forcibly transfer protected persons from or within an occupied territory. States are also forbidden from destroying individual or collective property in an occupied territory, except when this is rendered absolutely necessary by military operations.
Under Israeli law, settlements ‘authorized’ by the government are legal while smaller, ‘unofficial’ outposts are illegal. Sometimes the Israeli government retroactively ‘legalizes’ previously unauthorized outposts. International law does not make any such distinctions; all Israeli settlements in the OPT violate the Fourth Geneva Convention.
The international community has consistently recognized that settlements contravene international law and create a situation which perpetuates a range of violations of Palestinian human rights including, but not limited to, discriminatory policies based on nationality, ethnicity and religion.
The United Nations Fact Finding Mission (FFM) on Israeli Settlements found “a multitude of the human rights of the Palestinians are violated in various forms and ways due to the existence of the settlements” and “Israel is committing serious breaches of its obligations under the right to self-determination and under humanitarian law.”
The chair of the FFM, Ms. Christine Chanet said, “In compliance with Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention Israel must cease all settlement activities without preconditions.”
In order for the United States government to respect the rule of law during these ‘peace talks’ and truly facilitate a just and sustainable peace in the region, they must insist Israel immediately halt all construction of settlements and related infrastructure as a first step towards removing all settlers from the OPT.

[1] Israel’s long-running policy of settling civilians in occupied territory is considered a war crime under the statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Article 8(2) of the Rome Statute defines “the transfer, directly or indirectly, by the Occupying Power of parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies, or the deportation or transfer of all or parts of the population of the occupied territory within or outside this territory” as a war crime when committed as part of a plan or policy or as part of a large-scale commission of such crimes.
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"It’s time to vote with our feet and send a clear message to the world that we truly believe that the Temple Mount is ours and we truly hope and pray for the rebuilding of the Third Temple."
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Laudato si' is the second encyclical of Pope Francis. The encyclical has the subtitle "on care for our common home". In it, the pope critiques consumerism and irresponsible development, laments environmental degradation and global warming, and calls all people of the world to take "swift and unified global action.”
In the fifth chapter, Bergoglio offers some guidelines for guidance and action. Not only a complaint, but it raises the question of what can be done to "get out of the spiral of self-destruction in which we are sinking". The Church does not pretend to define scientific questions, nor to replace politics, but the Pope calls for an "honest and transparent debate, because particular needs or ideologies do not harm the common good".
The judgment is severe: "The world summits on the environment in recent years have not responded to expectations because, due to lack of political decision, they have not reached really significant and effective global environmental agreements". The Pope asks "why do we want to maintain a power today that will be remembered for its inability to intervene when it was urgent and necessary to do so?"
We need a world ruler: "we need an agreement on governance (administrative) regimes for the whole range of so-called global common goods", since "environmental protection cannot be assured only on the basis of the financial calculation of costs and benefits . The environment is one of those assets that the mechanisms of the market are not able to defend or adequately promote ", he writes repeating the words of the Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church - is a book edited by the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace for gather and systematize the Catholic teaching on social doctrine.
Also in this chapter, Pope Francis insists on the development of honest and transparent decision-making processes, in order to "discern" which entrepreneurial policies and initiatives will lead to "a true integral development". In particular, the study of the environmental impact of a new project “requires transparent political processes and subjected to dialogue, while the corruption that hides the true environmental impact of a project in exchange for favors often leads to ambiguous agreements that escape the duty to inform and in-depth debate ". Particularly incisive is the appeal addressed to those who cover political offices, so as to avoid "the logic of efficiency and immediatist" "today dominant:" if he has the courage to do so, he will be able to recognize again the dignity that God has given him as a person and will leave, after his passage in this story, a testimony of generous responsibility.
Finally, the sixth chapter, Education and ecological spirituality, because "every change needs motivation and an educational journey". All educational fields are involved, first and foremost "school, family, media, catechesis". The starting point is "to focus on another lifestyle", which also opens up the possibility of "exercising healthy pressure on those who hold political, economic and social power".
What happens when consumer choices manage to "change the behavior of companies, forcing them to consider the environmental impact and production models". We cannot underestimate the importance of environmental education pathways capable of affecting daily gestures and habits, from the reduction of water consumption, to the separate collection of waste to "turn off unnecessary lights".

All this brings to light the very pragmatic concepts embraced by Last Day Party:
1. The need for global governance.
2. The use of tools and organizations that allow smarter decision-making processes.
3. The responsibility of the leaders.
4. Education to spread best practices.
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Is the Earthquake that struck Amatrice on 24th August 2016 correlated with the 216-digits matrix?

In 2009, during the shooting of my film The Man of the Apocalypse, I shot a sequence, not published in the movie, in the terrace of my office, as long as I was writing the matrix of 216-digits, in front of an open yard, from which they could hear the noise of excavators.

In 2011 I published the video a few days on YouTube, entitling it "Earthquake, spread the first numerical earthquake in the history", totalizing only 4 visitors.

On August 24th, 2016 a 6.0 magnitude earthquake struck Amatrice, an Italian town in the province of Rieti, with a first quake, which was also the most violent, at 3:36 am, with its epicenter in Accumoli, 4 km depth.

The word Amatrice means Amateur, but it could also mean A-Matrix.

What is unique is that the 3:36 in the morning correspond to 216 minutes after midnight, by remembering the 216-digits matrix.

From a statistical analysis of visitors to the site, it appears an inexplicable circumstance between 23 and 24 August 2016, in which there was a peak of 6,000 visitors when, on average, connections to the site does not exceed 30 (see image on the section Additional Documents).

This morning (24th August 2019), when I woke up, I turned on my smartphone to check the time. It was precisely 6:12 am, which symbolizes 216 through a mirror.

The digital philosophy, the physics of time and the nature of numbers confirm that the events that concern humanity are connected with the Whole.
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For at least two centuries, the political battle in most democracies has been between conservatives and progressives. In particular, between those who want to maintain the status quo and those who want to question it; those who favour stability and those who want to shake up the status quo established by previous generations. Naturally, these distinctions are full of nuances in different countries, considering the different history, mentality, geopolitical situation and social divisions of each country.
Today, this divide has become even more complex: should we make a distinction, among the conservatives, the people who want to protect nature? Should the people who want to encourage and accept all types of technological and industrial innovations be considered as supporters of change? It could lead to classifying ecological parties on the right-wing and the supporters of the liberal economy on the left-wing.
Should those who support defending rural territories really be classified on the right-wing? And the defenders of big cities on the left-wing? Should the people who defend the national identity cause necessarily be classified on the right-wing and those who want a more open world on the left-wing? Is secularism, which is at the heart of French identity, not left-wing quest? And is not openness to the world an idea of the proponents of the market economy, which should rather be classified on the right-wing? Finally, is an authoritarian government necessarily more right-wing than left-wing?
It is clear that these concepts are evolving, the analytical grids are converging, new struggles are emerging, which do not overlap with the old ones. And it is increasingly difficult to reduce the political debate to two simple camps: there are conservatives and modernists on both the right-wing and the left-wing.
The policy evolutions have allowed some people to say that the left-right political spectrum divide is dead. Does that mean we have to give up on it? And to think that today's struggle is in fact between progressives and conservatives, between those who defend the homeland and those who favour mobility.
The distinction between "open" and "closed" is certainly becoming more and more important.
Those who advocate for closure are those who defend an identity, a territory, and a cultural and natural heritage. If we were to follow this criterion, it should lead us to see the emerging coalition between the far right and the ecologists, which does not actually exist almost anywhere. It is therefore not a relevant divide. Because in reality, we cannot defend the environment by closing ourselves off: the climate has no borders; and it is not, for example, because we improve the situation of forests in one country that the situation of the world's forests will not worsen.
Those who advocate for openness are those who defend receiving goods and people from elsewhere, in exchange for the individual right to mobility. If we were to follow this criterion, we should see an alliance between those who defend the right to receive migrants and those who favour free trade. But this is not an actual thing.
Thus, I do not think the distinction between conservatives and progressives, or between closed and open is still relevant. Or that the left-right divide wing is a thing of the past. It has taken new forms.
Never have inequalities in income, wealth, hope and social mobility been so high. Never has the fight for more social justice been more justified. Justice related to individuals, generations, social groups, and territories. And it is this struggle that brings together those who want to defend the weakest wherever they are, in factories, territories, abroad, or in future generations.
To bring these various concepts together and to find out where the new divide is leading us, it seems to me that we need to make a new distinction between those who think that we should only take care of ourselves and those who believe the best way to take care of ourselves is to take care of others. Between selfishness and altruism. Both perfectly respectable. Both favouring different values. Yet both can turn into unbearable caricatures.
Of course, there may be times when necessary reforms that are neither left or right on the policy spectrum, but are objectively useful to everyone, are delayed for too long by pusillanimous leaders, and lead to putting aside for a time the distinction between left-wing and right-wing. But this can only last for a period of time.
Altruism will prevail if it can convince us that it is also the most intelligent and effective form of selfishness; and that, for example, it is by helping rural areas that we will best defend urban areas; that it is by helping African development that we will best protect the interests of Europeans, and that it is by defending future generations that we will best prepare our own future.
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Worried to see the European civilization wither away, as a historian, I give my thoughts and personal advice in What to do? Living with the decline of Europe, a survival guide for lovers of the West.

My book What to do? Living with the decline of Europe is more personal testimony than political essay. This is the reason why I wanted to share these intimate reflections.
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The terrifying accident at the Russian weapons and ammunition warehouse in Achinsk, Russia, not far from Krasnoyarsk, is a grating metaphor of what is happening around the world. And, it is still perfectly avoidable: the accumulation of ammunition and weapons, in hazardous security conditions, near a city of more than 100,000 inhabitants, ended up producing an explosion equivalent to that of 40,000 shells.
Looking at the world, it appears that something similar is being prepared, on a completely different scale: in a senseless typical junkyard manner, we are accumulating many flammable materials without any precaution, all of which can trigger a global upheaval: Beijing can shoot at Hong Kong demonstrators, which would lead to a violent reaction from the Americans and China's neighbours; North Korea's production of nuclear weapons and launchers will eventually lead to a reaction from South Korea and Japan, who will also want these weapons as well; which will push Iran to go much further in enriching its uranium.
Similarly, the catastrophic destruction of one of the world's last primary forests vital for humanity in Brazil, and similarly senseless accumulation of waste in the oceans, are other examples of the suicide of every man for himself.
In addition, there are the threats of the United States’ trade war against China, Germany or France; the imminent exit of Great Britain from the European Union without an agreement; and above all, the world's financial situation is getting more volatile every day and is only being maintained by a slow spoliation of savers, which will not be sufficient to finance the demands of the richest for long.
All this leads to an accumulation of contradictions that will soon be unbearable: the more the wealthy classes plunder the middle classes, the more populism will rise; the more the poor classes emerge from their misery without changing their way of life, the more the environment will be looted and massacred.
All of this is absolutely untenable. And it is the expression of a carefree attitude on the part of everyone, mostly concerned about their own interests, without wanting to consider the global consequences of their actions. And, with leaders and the global elites convinced that what has made the west happy since the end of the Second World War can make the whole planet happy tomorrow—deadly illusions.
In these circumstances, someone will soon have an interest in lighting the fuse, to divert attention from their own turpitudes, or to try to take advantage of a crisis to impose themselves on their rivals. And everything will explode, into a crisis much more serious than the previous one, because it will be financial, commercial, environmental and military.
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The expo starts from my beginnings: the lions. They are the ones who taught me the picture. I was a kid very 'little con': I lied, flew. I was fired from schools. Yet everyone has a chance that passes. I was not afraid of my luck. As I had nothing, no diploma, I agreed to sweep the Boulogne film studio where I met actors, directors. After a year, I did a movie or two as an actor but I was bad, I did not work. Everything rocks when I fall in love with the mother of my best friend who then takes me to the Allier. She makes me discover her love of animals and we create a zoological reserve, at the beginning, with deer, wild boars etc. then, little by little, we raised tigers, lions. When I left at 30, I wanted to become a scientist. I went to Kenya with my wife today to prepare a thesis on the behavior of lions in Kenya. I realize then that the photos give information that does not give the writing. I start to learn patience. At the same time, I become a hot-air balloon pilot. I discovered aerial photography.

When I started to photograph, I learned to look at beauty. What is more beautiful than a large oak in a field? What is more beautiful than a storm? This beauty crushes everything. Then the talk about the beauty of the planet changed in speech about the urgency to save what can still be. The success of "The Earth comes from the sky" comes from there: the beauty is around us, one is not even more aware of it. I have no great merit. My only quality is to make every effort for my work. I mortgaged my house for the project "Earth from the sky". When you work on something, you are inhabited by a certainty about what you do. It may be a little pretentious. But when you have the right subject, everyone is a good photographer. And then, I always thought that my photos did not belong to me. Earth is a common good. This is also why all the photos will be sold for the benefit of my foundation and everything is offset carbon.

I dreamed of having a place where we could talk about ecology, awareness, raising people's awareness of the environment through free exhibitions, cooking classes, an outdoor course. We now have a giant hive too. To have in Paris three hectares and a castle to do it, it is the dream. The GoodPlanet Foundation does not stop there and is full of projects around the world.

Since I'm 20, I'm interested in the environment. It was not the same look as today. We were interested in biodiversity: rhinos, elephants, birds. Today, we talk about global danger for all life on Earth. Scientists are now talking about the sixth extinction. Our values and our way of life are similar to the society consumer society in which we live. And finally, this religion of growth is killing life on Earth. What we could do at $ 2 billion, we can not do it at $ 7 billion. The population has been multiplied by 4 and the consumption of meat and fish by 8. We are consuming the Earth. It's been a decade that we really realize all this.

I am an optimist very worried. We go to an unknown world, not everyone will die but it's a more complicated world, more cyclones, storms, an unbalanced world. What is terrible is that life on earth next to us is disappearing: wild animals only represent 2% of the world's biomass. There is more than us on Earth. And today, it's ridiculous to think that we can stop the machine. We must not think that it is useless to act, all our actions in favor of the planet amortize, we must continue to fight.

You can eat organic, live in the countryside, stop buying industrial meat. It's simple.It will not change the world but allows to be in harmony with oneself. But acting makes you happy.

Politicians lack courage. They are either unconscious or so obsessed with their electoral vision that they do not see what is happening. I imagine all the files that pile up on the desk of Emmanuel Macron whereas this subject should exceed all the others.

The agreement of COP 21? What a fake stuff. The words oil, fossil energy and coal are absent, otherwise the producing countries did not sign. The problem is the egoism of everyone, nations. Everyone does what he wants. It would take a world government.
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Customer expectations of reliable quality and rapid delivery forces today’s manufacturers to either shorten cycle times or lose business. Customers simply switch suppliers when others are more capable of delivering within their preferred timeframes. Lean systems have provided a formidable operating strategy for leaders determined to achieve and maintain optimal operational systems and customer satisfaction levels. There are multiple good models for lean manufacturing operations. ISO publishes guidelines for conformance to its standards. “5S” programs are taught in some business college courses, and the SCOR model is also utilized. There are programs that emphasize rapid, or low-cost implementation. And, most models are applicable to any business size or integrated corporate structure.

Who Needs Lean Manufacturing?
A company in need of lean manufacturing practices tends to be easy to identify, typically displaying multiple of the following symptoms of operational deficiency:
  • Inventory amasses in buffer stocks.
  • Work-in-progress (WIPs) queues are jammed.
  • Information quality and flow is poor.
  • Production goals are rarely met.
  • Production schedules are unbalanced.
  • Overhead costs are excessive (due to systemic disorder).
  • Customer service performance is poor.
  • Sales forecasting information is insufficient.
  • Inventory records, product specs, shipping documents contain errors.
  • Delinquent and/or low quality suppliers remain in the supply chain.
  • There are excess inventories of some materials and shortages of needed.
  • Cycle times are unnecessarily long.
  • Operating procedures are overly-complex and confusing.
  • Unnecessary steps are common in processes.
  • Lead times are too long.
  • Backorders are the norm.
  • Product is unnecessarily moved.
  • Holding areas are maintained for excess inventory.
  • Shipping containers permit excessive empty space or product damage.
  • Employees conduct superfluous, value-subtracted activities.

Lean Manufacturing Planning and Implementation
Lean manufacturing implementation should not be undertaken until top management firmly supports the initiative and is clear that many processes will be changed. After careful planning, test implementation on one product line to demonstrate proof of concept regarding your design for implementation prior to broad-scale execution.
  1. Identify an executive who will champion the lean program, and engage in planning.
  2. Educate all employees fully on new systems to be implemented.
  3. Lay out the comprehensive designs for the new/modified processes.
  4. Develop a plan for a lean manufacturing test run in a single operational area.
  5. Set quantified goals for amounts of improvement in various facets of performance.
  6. Design your plan to be implemented in phases.
  7. Establish time-tables.
  8. Obtain full commitment from management prior to starting phase 1.
The now outmoded MRP scheduling approach too often moves inventory into stock that doesn’t reflect customer needs and cannot efficiently make frequent adjustments to accommodate variations in those needs. Consequently, unnecessarily prolonged lead times and excess inventory are used to compensate for the poor system, and compromised customer service is the outcome. Employ a system that replenishes inventories by gauging actual rates of depletion.
Migrate to lean manufacturing-friendly software, integrating departments and suppliers as appropriate to capacitate optimal flow of information and coordination of diverse activities. This is often the most challenging and expensive step in conversion to lean manufacturing operating, but the payoffs in operational efficiency, quality, and customer satisfaction make it well worth the investment. Advanced Planning and Scheduling (APS) software can be an ideal tool for managing customer services, inventory allocations, scheduling, and other functions—eliminating countless routine hand-to-hand transfers of information that prolong the fulfillment process.

Measuring Lean Manufacturing Performance
Insufficient metrics employed by many business leaders often reflect only on areas like production labor efficiency and equipment usages—focusing inordinate amounts of emphasis on improvement in these isolated areas and failing to identify performance issues throughout the company. In addition, establishing a well-rounded set of metrics, set up self-monitoring metrics that hold individuals accountable for tracking their own levels of participation in the lean program. Conduct routine assessments. Most employees soon come to appreciate the advantages of working in a lean facility:
  • Workflow processes are smoothed as information transmission delays are eliminated.
  • Physical reorganization cuts useless steps.
  • Paper and electronic files are reordered to reduce frustrations.
  • Schedules are balanced.
  • Like-kind tasks, and those along a single route, are grouped appropriately.
  • Time no longer wasted can be applied to increasing productivity.

Supply Chain Lean Manufacturing Integration
Close coordination with suppliers is necessary to optimize your lean manufacturing program. Some suppliers may need to upgrade their own systems or processes to match your company’s new capabilities. Sharing visibility of your customers’ consumption rates transforms the supply chain companies into a unified group with a singular goal with respect to your company’s needs. Such integration affords your business exciting benefits:
  • reduced dependency on forecasting
  • enhanced flexibility to accommodate variables in customers’ purchasing patterns
  • reduced waste due to “overproduction”
  • new sense of collaborative relations with suppliers
  • and more pro-active problem solving
  • significantly reduced waste at all points in your system

Costs of Lean Manufacturing Implementation
Some capital expenditures may be necessary, but most substantial improvements from lean manufacturing are achievable with existing equipment. Decisions to invest in lean come much more easily when management views it as a strategy for increasing competitiveness, revenues, market share, profit margin and reducing labor and inventory costs. Considering that if competitors gain too much ground in these areas, it may become less clear that your company can continue to compete. The question may be whether or not your company can afford not to invest in lean operations.

Financial Benefits of Going Lean
Customer satisfaction is your money-maker. Unifying the entire organization, and linking in your entire supply chain, dramatically improves both management and staff productivity, eliminating redundancy. Excess layers of paperwork are stripped away from queues throughout the fulfillment process, and priorities are clarified automatically.
  • reduces cycle times
  • reduces needed manufacturing floor space
  • cuts percentage of reworks
  • cuts purchasing costs
  • frees up capital, strengthens the company
  • reduces production costs
  • cuts necessary lead times
  • cuts inventory costs
  • reduces costs of quality
  • increases on-time delivery rates

Being Lean vs. Claiming to be Lean
Some manufacturing facilities merely pretend to have a lean manufacturing program in order to impress customers, incurring what they view as a superfluous cost to maintain the lean façade. They have no intention to actually improve operational efficiency. They see lean as an encumbrance instead of as a true model of what they could accomplish in quality, efficiency, cost savings, and more meaningful customer satisfaction. But, symptoms of “fake lean” are often readily apparent to customers who tour, or even who deal remotely with, manufacturing facilities.

Ready, Set, Go Lean!
Lean manufacturing principles are highly valued by businesses worldwide. Today’s competitive global environment demands lean operation. Lean principles are understood to eliminate wastefulness and direct focus only on practices that honor customers and increase value in the products offered them. Lean ultimately cultivates business cultures concentrated on mutual problem solving. Such cultures empower and encourage all team members to contribute to quality operations. Facilitating communications throughout the organization and its supply chain develops a harmonious way of doing business that is very attractive to quality personnel, the pivotal resource for sustainability of the high quality production and customer service requisite for competitive advantage in the modern marketplace.
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Highways England has become the latest company to partner with the Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre (GEIC).
This new collaboration will look to address some of the many challenges experienced by the road network in England, such as the deterioration of road and pavement surfaces.

Highways England is responsible for the motorways and major A roads in the country, which carry four million journeys over four thousand, three hundred miles of road network; safely and reliably every single day.
The government company is continually seeking to improve the experience of those who use and operate the network. Adding graphene into maintenance and renewals operations has the potential to extend asset life and make the network perform at an industry changing level. Improving the experience of those using the roads, reducing road worker exposure and making journeys more reliable.

This partnership is looking to explore the operational and road user benefit of incorporating graphene into assets such as road surfacing and road markings as well as help to drive the development of a low carbon and digital road network. The potential improvements could result in stronger, long lasting materials reducing roadworks and improving road user journeys.

This latest partnership is a brilliant example of how graphene can be used to tackle problems faced by most people everyday. This is further enabled by the facilities and capabilities we can provide to our industry partners, that accelerates the many small improvements that ultimately create an optimised product.
James Baker, CEO Graphene@Manchester

Isolated at The University of Manchester in 2004 by Professor Sir Andre Geim and Professor Sir Kostya Novoselov, graphene is the world’s first two-dimensional material, many more times stronger than steel, more conductive than copper and one million times thinner than a human hair.

James Baker, CEO Graphene@Manchester said: “This latest partnership is a brilliant example of how graphene can be used to tackle problems faced by most people everyday.
“This is further enabled by the facilities and capabilities we can provide to our industry partners, that accelerates the many small improvements that ultimately create an optimised product.”

Paul Doney, Innovation Director at Highways England said: “We are really excited about the opportunity to explore leading edge materials and what this might lead to for our road network. GEIC is at the forefront, having made the discovery here in Manchester, and by building a collaboration with our operations teams who understand the challenges, we are looking to deliver improved safety and performance of our roads.”

The Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre (GEIC) specialises in the rapid development and scale up of graphene and other 2D materials applications. The GEIC is an industry-led innovation centre, designed to work in collaboration with industry partners to create, test and optimise new concepts for delivery to market, along with the processes required for scale up and supply chain integration.
The two-tier membership model allows the flexibility for industry partners to work on short feasibility projects, through to a long-term strategic partnership with multiple projects in different application areas.
Advanced materialsis one of The University of Manchester’sresearch beacons- examples of pioneering discoveries, interdisciplinary collaboration and cross-sector partnerships that are tackling some of the biggest questions facing the planet.
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If you have experienced love, you know its power. The intoxicating emotion has been credited with the rise and fall of empires. It has created billion-dollar industries and inspired an endless list of books, movies and songs.
People in all cultures around the world glorify love, particularly romantic love. It is enshrined as the cornerstone of a happy mating relationship, but why?

David M. Buss, a University of Texas at Austin psychology professor, argues the universality of love goes beyond the traditional arguments of “nature versus nurture” and straight to the heart of our evolutionary history as a species.
“Although we do not have a videotape of our ancestors, abundant evidence tells us that the capacity for love is a human universal,” says Buss. “Love evolved over many eons in the context of long-term mating. To paraphrase a popular song from many years ago, ‘Without love, where would we be now?’ ”
Buss is one of the founders of the field of evolutionary psychology and believes all our emotions and behaviors can be explained in the context of evolution.

Natural selection explains not only why we stand upright but also how we think about the world, who we are attracted to, and yes, how we love.
“Love is a psychological adaptation,” he says, “and probably the most intoxicating and bracing emotion humans have.”
Psychological adaptions, according to evolutionary theory, are mechanisms our species develops to solve problems. These adaptions are passed on to future generations if they contribute to our survival and reproduction.
And what might be love’s evolutionary contribution? Simply put, it serves as a commitment device.

“Some other species, such as some bird species, form long-term pair bonds. But even our closest primate relatives, chimpanzees, do not form long-term mateships. Because love evolved as part of our long-term mating strategy, humans may be unique among primates in having the emotion of love,” he says.

Unfortunately, you can’t speak about the evolution of love without talking about what happens when love is lost. The vast majority of humans experience a failed love. Studies have shown that 85 percent of us have experienced at least one romantic breakup. So, what evolutionary role does heartbreak play?
“Being one of the most important emotions humans experience, it’s important to understand the evolution of love because it is also linked with terrible outcomes when it shatters,” notes Buss.
Recovering from heartbreak, he argues, is an evolutionary strength. Viewing relationships in the context of humanity versus our individual situations is quite comforting.

As Buss wrote for the Austin American-Statesman last Valentine’s Day, “Humans are remarkably resilient. We rally from setbacks. Despite myths about ‘the one and only,’ most people recover and often discover love anew. More people should know that evolution has equipped us with the glories of love, the strength of spirit to rebound from its loss, and the fortitude to throw ourselves back into life again.”
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Did you know that billions of dollars are wasted on ads that fail to grab attention or motivate people to act? Since the dawn of time, humans have tried to influence one another. Scholars, academics, and researchers have developed countless theories of persuasion which ignore the latest brain research on how people decide.
I have researched the effectiveness of persuasive messages on the brain for nearly two decades. Each day, whether you realize it or not, you participate in or create persuasive arguments you hope will change people’s views, or convince them to buy a product or solution that will change their lives. Unfortunately, few of these messages have a real chance to grab people’s attention, shift their perceptions and lead them to act. The game of persuasion is often a complete waste of time and money.

And if you use conventional research to investigate why people like or dislike your messages, you will not get closer to the truth. Only direct measures of how their brains respond to ads can begin to shed light on the unconscious mechanisms that can really explain and predict the impact sales messages have on the brain.

Persuasion science is a new field that can finally provide scientific answers to questions that have puzzled advertisers, marketers, PR experts but also academics and researchers for decades. But while measuring brain responses has become relatively easier and affordable, the real challenge is to make sense of the gigabytes of data generated by millisecond recordings of brain waves, eye fixations, facial expressions and skin moisture.

After nearly two decades of research and practice in the field of persuasion science (also known as neuromarketing or consumer neuroscience), my partner Patrick Renvoise and I have been able to develop a persuasion theory that can help you avoid many pitfalls in constructing and delivering convincing claims.

A theory of persuasion based on brain science
There are countless theories of persuasion that have been debated for hundreds of years. Curiously, few are anchored in any measure of what happens in the brain when people pay attention, decode the meaning of an argument, feel an emotion related to the message and trigger a decision. Thanks to the phenomenal growth of the field of neuroscience over the last 20 years, new answers have finally emerged to solidify our scientific understanding of how ads can either influence or be disregarded within just a few seconds. Our theory of persuasion is based on the work of remarkable decision scientists and psychologists such as Daniel Kahneman, Richard Thaler, Dan Ariely and many more. It is also based on our own research for private and public projects we have conducted since the creation of our company SalesBrain in 2002.
This is what we have learned the relationship between persuasive messages and the brain: The nervous system has two major systems, but one dominates the processing and it is not the one you would suspect does.
  • The Primal Brain: The oldest system composed of a multitude of brain structures that make you safe. The Primal brain manages critical internal states that control attention and emotional resources to address survival-related priorities below our level of consciousness. Think of it as the BIOS of your mind, a set of basic instructions that control how your computer receives input and output. The Primal dominates the processing of all persuasive messages!
  • The Rational Brain: The most recent, more evolved part of the brain. Think of it as the latest version of Windows or Mac OS for your brain. The Rational brain is like a suite of enhanced applications you can learn, change or upgrade during your lifetime. This brain uses higher cognitive resources that help mediate some of the responses of the Primal brain.
A science of persuasion based on the dominance of the Primal Brain
Because of the dominance of the primal brain, we like to say that persuasion is a bottom-up effect. So to optimize your chances of getting results from your ads, you need to first and foremost make your messages friendly to the Primal brain. How? By using the 6 persuasion biases that trigger instant Primal brain responses.

Make your message PERSONAL: Think of the Primal brain as the center of ME. It has no patience or empathy for anything that does not immediately concern its well-being. It scans for threats before it attends to pleasure. Vigilance drives the speed and nature of its response.

Make your arguments CONTRASTABLE: The Primal brain is sensitive to solid contrast such as before/after, risky/safe, with/without, and slow/fast. Contrast allows quick, risk-free decisions. Without contrast, the brain enters a state of confusion, which delays a decision, or worse, stalls a decision altogether.

Make your proofs TANGIBLE: The Primal brain needs tangible input. It is constantly looking for what is familiar and friendly; what can be recognized quickly, what is concrete and immutable. The Primal brain cannot process complexity without a lot of effort and skepticism. It appreciates simple, easy-to-grasp, concrete ideas.

Make your story MEMORABLE: The Primal brain remembers little. Placing the most important content at the beginning is a must, and repeating it at the end is imperative. Keep in mind that what you say in the middle of your delivery should be brief and convincing. Don’t go over 3 convincing arguments: your CLAIMS. The Primal brain loves stories because a good narrative construction is easy to remember.

Make your points VISUAL: The Primal brain’s default sensory channel is visual. The optical nerve is physically connected to the Primal brain and at least 25 times faster than the auditory nerve. Therefore, the visual channel provides a fast and effective connection to accelerate decisions. No other sense is more dominant than the visual sense. It is the superhighway of your messages.

Make your impact EMOTIONAL: The Primal brain is strongly triggered by emotions. Emotions create chemical events in your brain that directly impact the way you process and memorize information. In fact, you simply can’t remember events unless you strong “emotional cocktail.” No emotion, no decisions!

A process of persuasion based on 4 critical steps
Learning to speak the language of the 6 Primal brain stimuli is a good start, but your message must be designed to answer 3 critical questions first.

What are the top PAINS of your targets?
Diagnosing PAINS helps you unveil the most critical decision drivers that influence your customers’ behavior. Our primal nature is to orient our attention to messages that awaken our fears, which is why a product or solution that can clearly articulate which PAINS it can eliminate first will receive more consideration and create higher urgency.

What are your 3 unique CLAIMS?
Turn your top reasons into short and simple words that are easy to pronounce and information that is clearly organized under a maximum of three chapters or arguments: your CLAIMS. Also, messages that are easy to read, with fonts that are processed with maximum fluency are preferred by the Primal brain.

What is the evidence of your GAIN?
Your value demonstration needs to be understood by a brain that does not even understand the future. This means that you need to make that demonstration simple enough that even a non-expert would understand it in the present moment. Use customer testimonials or demos to, create ah-ha moments your targets needs to confirm a decision.
Putting together a persuasion message using a theory can deliver phenomenal results.
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It is completely vain to preach peace and non-violence without taking charge of the inner condition of concrete humanity. We must get out of moralism and ideology, to enter into a therapeutic and spiritual perspective: violence is a disease, the inevitable effect of a radical alienation. It is at this level that we must work, if we want to really educate someone for peace.

I believe that to truly educate a person to non-violence today, at the beginning of the third millennium of the Christian era, we must get out of any easy rhetoric or pacifist ideology, from any moralistic approach, and enter into the merits of the difficult inner changes that every authentic process of pacification requires.

In all of us there is, in fact, a powerful and often unconscious propensity to violence and destructiveness, so much so that war seems to constitute a constant in all the planetary history we know. Throughout the twentieth century we have seen the illuminist and even Marxist illusions collapse, which saw evil only as an effect of social injustices, which humanity would have known an era of peace and prosperity. The world wars, the extermination camps, the violence of the totalitarianisms, the communist tyranny have shown us in a new and shocking way how abysmal the human heart is instead, contradictory and potentially violent. Likewise, psychoanalysis, existential philosophy, art and literature have probed the infernal depths of the human soul, revealing its furious longing for death and destruction: "an abyss is the man and his heart is an abyss" ( Psalm 63.7).

We could say that the 20th century re-proposes in various ways an anthropology of the wounded man, inhabited by dark and unconscious abysses, by furies and almost irrepressible impulses. It is this piercing wound, which breaks every man's heart, and which makes us feel guilty, split, unfinished, the true root cause of our violence: the human being is violent, he is aggressive, greedy, eager, envious , and murderer, precisely because he is radically unhappy, torn apart, desperate, literally out of his mind, alienated. On the other hand, it is well known in Christian spiritual anthropology: "Is it not true that man throughout his entire history finds himself alienated, tortured, abused? The great mass of humanity has almost always lived in oppression, and from another angle: the oppressors - are they perhaps the true images of man or are they not the first deformed, a degradation of man? Karl Marx drastically described the alienation of man, even if he did not reach the true depth of alienation, because he reasoned only in the material sphere "(J. Ratzinger).

That is why today it is completely vain to preach peace and non-violence without taking charge of the inner condition of concrete humanity. It would be like preaching to a terminally ill person to jump with a pole, continuing to repeat how beautiful and appropriate it is to exceed two meters. We must definitely get out of moralism and ideology, in order to get into a more properly therapeutic and spiritual perspective: violence is a disease, the inevitable effect of a radical alienation, so it is at that level that we have to work, if we want to really educate someone for peace.

According to the Christian faith it is only the rebirth in the Spirit of Christ that can heal us, heal our wound, and give us a life that is finally intact, and freed from the effects of sin, which separates us from God and therefore alienates us. But the problem we are proposing today is this: to what extent have Christians made and experienced this inner reconciliation? How is it that during these Christian centuries, in our "Christian" civilizations and societies, violence continued to dominate with such virulence? How can we enter a new age of greater realization of the miracle of our deep healing? What can a new evangelization-pacification of Christians mean?

In other words, education for peace today presents itself as an urgent need on two distinct and correlated levels, one spiritual and the other political-pedagogical: on the one hand it is a question of radically renewing the Christian initiatory itineraries, so that the peace of Christ comes experienced daily as the balm that cures our despair, and which consequently frees us from the violence it produces. While on the other hand we are called to formulate educational journeys for all, completely secular, that is, from kindergarten to professional formations, which however take care of man's wounded heart, that is, of his structural alienation, and help him to walk towards states of greater integrity / happiness, thus renewing the deteriorated and often terminal forms of our urban, national and planetary coexistence.
This obviously involves a great pedagogical and spiritual experimentation, which can effectively compose different educational levels. Today, in fact, we need both interpretative tools much more adequate to the epochal challenges in progress, and that is a new culture of transformation (cultural level), and to know much more deeply our defensive-aggressive psychic forms, and that is how we continue to to close ourselves, to isolate ourselves, to hate, and to put others at a distance, often without even realizing it (psycho-existential level). And finally we also need to placate our breathless, and therefore often violent, mind by teaching them to subside, to breathe, and to expand their inner view, as, as the prophet Isaiah says:

"In salvation and conversion there is your salvation,
in the trusting abandonment there is your strength "(Is 30,15).

This integrated method of education to peacemaking must then be transmitted through warm, group, and fraternal and prolonged accompaniment relationships, as we have been trying to do for 18 years in our Groups, called Darsi pace.
In short, war is first and foremost within the heart of man, of every man, and at all times. Overtaking this reality by lingering on extrinsic, moral or social considerations, simply means increasing the anger of our split and unheard parts. Instead we must learn to listen to these furious and sorrowful parts to the end, to recognize their strong presence and influence within us, so that they can be corrected, and their destructive energies can be converted into creative energies, and to really be able to build relationships pacified.
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A new model to reveal a full emotional profile
The study aimed to create and develop an emotion recognition algorithm based on EEG data. Although studying emotions is quite common practice in neuromarketing, most of the existing models focus on separate characteristics of an emotional process: mainly on emotional engagement and valence. More sophisticated methods of measuring the precise emotional states could help companies to better understand customers, their behavior and the differences in perception of commercials by various segments of target audiences. An emotional component becomes particularly important in a perception of brands, logos, packaging, etc.
Knowing what particular combination of emotional reactions is the key to consumers’ hearts might be a useful finding for commercial production.

In our study we tried to build a predictive model estimating salience of eight specific emotional responses that could potentially be useful in assessing the perception of advertising stimuli. We hope the results will allow us to reveal the emotional pattern of a stimulus and help gain complex and differentiated understanding of potential customers’ experience.

In order to identify the specific patterns of emotional responses, we first identified the emotions that seemed to be worth studying from a perspective of our everyday commercial studies. Secondly, we pre-selected video stimuli eliciting the identified emotions. Various video content was manually chosen from different sources and the relevance of the stimuli to expected affective reactions was validated. During the pilot session we asked the participants to assess and describe their emotional states. Then we merged all videos into eight categories in accordance with the collected responses: surprise, tenderness, joy, laughter, boredom, anger, sadness and fear.

The pilot study confirmed that the emotional responses elicited by our pre-selected videos are salient and consistent (only one kind of emotional response is elicited at the same time and similarly described by the majority of participants).The respondents (250 men and women aged 25 to 55 years old) viewed the selected videos that were intended to elicit the emotional responses mentioned above. A total of 16 videos (two in each category) lasting from 10 to 120 seconds were shown. After each video, the participants were asked to name an emotion evoked by the video and fill in the brief questionnaire describing their emotional state in terms of valence, engagement and presence of each of the studied emotional reactions using a 10-point Likert scale. EEG data were recorded simultaneously during the study. The collected data was expected to be used in machine learning to derive an emotion recognition algorithm.

The obtained data were used to determine the relationship between self-assessing emotional states and EEG activity. The numerous EEG parameters such as spectral power, Shannon entropy and coherence between each of 20 electrodes in theta, alpha, beta 1, beta 2 and gamma bands were taken into analysis as independent variables. The categories of emotional responses were treated as eight binary dependent variables. For each emotional response, a predictive model was built. The model allows the probability of emotion appearance in a stimulus to be calculated.

Eight models (one per emotion) were calculated on a learning sample. The results showed an accuracy of 56% to 83% in identifying the target emotion. The models’ outcomes, together with the collected data, create a unique emotional pattern reflecting the complex perception of stimuli. The predicted values of all eights emotions’ presence in each tested video were highly correlated to self-assessing emotional profiles.

The findings suggest that the extracted models could be used as a metrics of emotion recognition on EEG data, reflecting a complex emotional state when perceiving emotional stimuli. The created metrics might reveal some tiny details that distinguish emotional and memorable commercials from many others. It could help marketers to create high-performance and more targeted advertising with a high efficiency and “selling function”. We believe that our algorithm of emotion recognition is one of the first steps in a long-term process to better understand the complicated emotional processes in the human brain.

However, initial progress seems encouraging. More data, more varied stimuli, and more dedicated researchers are required to create better tools that will help us understand better what people feel. But the prize is invaluable. It will create a new level of neuromarketing application in the commercial world and contribute not only to applied neuromarketing and business production, but to the scientific community too.
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“Time is passing too fast!” Many of us use that phrase every day when we feel like our kids are growing up fast or when a deadline sneaks up on us. When Virginie van Wassenhove hears that phrase, it conjures an entirely different point of view. She goes straight to consciousness, musing on how we perceive reality.

“When it comes to time, we tend to use linguistic shortcuts that may abuse the state of reality and fundamentally bias the way we think about time and the way scientists conceptualize issues related to time,” she says. “I am interested in understanding how the slow time scales of squishy matter afford us to assign meaning to reality.”

A cognitive neuroscientist at CEA and INSERM in Paris, van Wassenhove is working to understand the neural underpinnings of time. She has organized a symposium on the topic at the Cognitive Neuroscience Society (CNS) annual meeting in San Francisco this month — featuring scientists who are exploring evidence of how we construct mental models of time.

“Our work suggests that the conscious arrow of time — thinking about the past or the future — is calibrated on where we imagine ourselves to be, what the brain represents to be the ‘here and now.'” -Virginie van Wassenhove

Traditionally, she explains, research on time has focused on how the brain quantifies duration and responds to external rhythms. Now, comparisons of mental time and space at the computational level are offering promising venues to explore new questions on how we perceive time in the brain — questions, van Wassenhove says, like “do high-level representations of time, unlike those of space, show an obligatory orientation past to future?”

“Our work suggests that the conscious arrow of time — thinking about the past or the future — is calibrated on where we imagine ourselves to be, what the brain represents to be the ‘here and now,’” she says. Van Wassenhove’s team’s work thus suggests that how we sequence time is determined by internal representations of ourselves.

For Marc Howard, a cognitive neuroscientist at Boston University, his fascination with time dates back to childhood. “The brain’s estimate of the past and the future is foundational to our experience,” he says. “We don’t experience a series of isolated moments. We experience a stream of memories receding gradually towards the past and a stream of predictions approaching from the future.” Our memory is thus a timeline that we must construct, he says.

What is exciting about the field now, Howard says, is that scientists are finding neurophysiological evidence to support what was once only theoretical mathematical models. “Over the last several years we’ve seen growing evidence that there’s a record of time in various parts of the brain,” Howards says. “These ‘time cells’ behave like we would expect from a compressed record of the past and have been observed in many brain regions, e.g. hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, and the striatum.”

“The field of neuroscience will have to further mature and embrace the fact that it will not be possible to understand the human mind without describing how the brain tells, represents, and conceptualizes time.” -Dean Buonomano

In even newer work he’ll be discussing at the CNS meeting, researchers have now found evidence to support a mathematical construct of time called a “Laplace transform.” Last summer, Albert Tsao in the Moser lab at the Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience and Centre for Neural Computation, which first discovered time cells, published a paper showing evidence that suggested the lateral entorhinal cortex maintains the Laplace transform of time.

Howard described the Laplace transform as a fun-house mirror reflection of an image that shows the pattern of events in time that lead to the present. “The reflection doesn’t look much like the image you started with,” he says. “But different images would give different reflections. If you knew the mapping between each image and its reflection, you could look at a reflection and guess what image caused it.”

For several years, Howard and colleagues have argued that the brain constructs time as a Laplace transform and a corresponding inverse. (The inverse in the funhouse analogy, he says, is the shape of the funhouse mirror.) In this construct, time cells estimate the past but with a systematic distortion predicted by the Laplace equations; the estimate gets more blurry for events further in the past.

Howard’s lab is working to replicate the Tsao data in monkeys to show that the Laplace transform equations govern this construct. “If this result holds up across tasks and species, it suggests that the equations are telling us something relatively deep about the way the brain estimates time,” he says. “It suggests we can work out a real theory of memory and maybe cognition more broadly.”
Indeed, Howard’s ultimate goal is to create “simple, elegant, and powerful descriptions of cognition.” While it’s still early, he says, “these new results convince me that this goal is at least possible.”

Indeed, van Wassenhove quotes Dean Buonomano (Your Brain is a Time Machine, 2018): “The field of neuroscience will have to further mature and embrace the fact that it will not be possible to understand the human mind without describing how the brain tells, represents, and conceptualizes time.”
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The University of Chester’s Energy Centre at Thornton Science Park is working with PowerHouse Energy to ‘turn off the plastic tap into the ocean’ to ultimately clean it up. The innovative technology turns waste plastic into electricity and low-cost hydrogen, which can be used for transport fuel. The process takes all mixed waste plastic in an untreated unsorted contaminated form and requires no sorting or washing. This ground breaking technology has the potential to not only create a green fuel but to clean up plastic from the world’s oceans.

The technology developed by the University and Powerhouse Energy, over several years, currently demonstrates small scale conversion of plastic to hydrogen and electricity with zero plastic remaining. W2T are the exclusive developer in the UK and South East Asia including Japan and South Korea for the Powerhouse PLC DMG (distributes modular generation) for waste plastic to hydrogen and electricity.

W2T will soon develop a plant on the 54-acre Protos site near Ellesmere Port in Cheshire where they will produce low-cost and low-carbon hydrogen fuel and electricity which will help power the site. This is a first-of-a-kind on the site owned by Peel Environmental- part of Peel Holdings Land and Property.
W2T will then aim to roll out plants in SE Asia to clean up waste plastic and to monetise plastic via this highly efficient conversion system. This will enable W2T plants to buy in unrecyclable plastic waste in countries, such as Indonesia for $50 a ton. Therefore, dissuading the disposal of waste plastic in rivers and oceans.
Professor Joe Howe, Executive Director Thornton Energy Research Institute, University of Chester, said: “We are extremely excited to be hosting the prototype demonstrator here at the University of Chester. The technology converts all plastic waste into high quality, low carbon hydrogen syngas which can then be used to power gas engines. A by-product of this process is electricity, meaning waste plastic can not only fuel cars but can also keep the lights on at home. Surely the world must wake up to this technology. It will make waste plastic valuable with it being able to power the world’s towns and cities and most importantly it can help clean up our oceans of waste plastic now."
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A sleek prototype of a high-speed train unveiled recently in China is designed to carry passengers at a speed of 600 kilometers per hour, or 370 mph. That’s more than 150 mph faster than the world's fastest passenger trains now in regular intercity service, which touch 217 mph on runs between Beijing and Shanghai.
The new train, under development by the state-owned China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation (CRCC), is designed not to run on rails but to float above the track using a technology known as magnetic levitation, or maglev.
Given the train’s tremendous speed, a trip by train could be even faster than traveling by air under certain circumstances, Ding Sansan, the head of the team developing the new train, told the Chinese newspaper Qingdao Daily. He said a trip from Beijing to Shanghai that might take four and a half hours by plane could be completed in about three and a half hours by the new maglev train.
Some media outlets reported that the train would begin service in 2021, but the company didn’t give an exact date — and rail experts say years of testing will be required before the train is ready to carry passengers.

“The Chinese maglev is very much a research project at this stage,” Chris Jackson, editor-in-chief of London-based Railway Gazette International, said. “There are no firm plans to develop a commercial route.”
Maglev train technology has been in development for decades. It uses powerful electromagnets to levitate train cars just above the track and provide forward propulsion, eliminating the friction from the metal wheels used by conventional trains.
In addition to being faster than conventional trains, maglev trains produce less noise and vibration, a boon for people living or working near the tracks, as well as for passengers and crew aboard the trains. Maglev trains also have fewer parts and thus promise greater reliability.
The new Chinese train won’t be the world’s first maglev train. Since 2002, a maglev demonstration train has been carrying passengers at speeds of up to 267 miles per hour on 19-mile runs between the outskirts of Shanghai and the city’s main international airport.

Japan is working on a maglev train that could begin service between Tokyo and Nagoya in 2027, carrying passengers at about 370 mph — the same speed projected for China’s new train.
A 300-mph maglev train has been proposed between Washington, D.C., and Baltimore, but Larry Blow, a maglev consultant in Arlington, Virginia, said the high cost of building it — estimated at $10 billion to $12 billion — is likely to scuttle that project.
But Blow said maglev trains could still find a place in the United States for urban transit systems, over short distances and at moderate speeds — perhaps around 60 mph. "That would be the much more popular application, if only for cost reasons," he said. The fastest passenger train currently in regular intercity service in the United States is Amtrak’s Acela Express, which reaches a top speed of 150 mph on runs between Boston and Washington, D.C. — but only for 34 miles of the 450-mile route.
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In recent years, our world has become hyper-connected, and while that offers many substantial benefits to both corporations as well as individuals, these benefits come with a hefty price tag on our privacy and security.
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The standard methods of teaching are beginning to shift with the integration of new systems and software. Online courses, interactive digital classrooms and similar solutions have changed the face of education in the United States. Many of these changes are positive — but not all of them.
In looking at higher education technology, it’s critical to acknowledge both the positive and negative aspects of the transition. Yes, these innovations have improved the learning process in amazing ways, but this progress has come at a cost. Replacing something often requires a sacrifice.
With that in mind, how has technology harmed students and teachers, and how has it helped them? We’ll explore both sides of the issue, offering a comprehensive overview of the risks and benefits of today’s solutions. Starting with the advantages will provide some necessary context.

The Advantages of Higher Education Technology
Education technology has significant value, especially for students with scheduling restraints. The convenience and accessibility of online courses make them a valuable asset. Even with a full-time job or a growing family, you’ll enjoy the freedom to pursue a degree without neglecting your responsibilities.
Furthermore, digital submissions can alleviate student stress and teacher workloads. A student has the flexibility to upload documents from their laptop, while a teacher can effectively organize the files for easy examination. You no longer have to feel anxious over lost or damaged papers, just the file itself.
Modern innovations have facilitated the learning process in other ways, from changes which are relatively mundane to more exciting advancements. Intelligent whiteboards, portable projectors, wireless 3D printers and even virtual reality headsets are all examples of education technology with value in the classroom.
Looking toward the future, recent trends in technology suggest a greater adoption of predictive analytics. It has the potential to help students as they schedule their courses, estimating the demand for certain classes. These systems can also alert teachers to any students at risk of failing or dropping out.

The Disadvantages of Higher Education Technology
It’s clear that education technology has a positive impact, but what about its negative aspects? Online courses, digital submissions and intelligent whiteboards are all appealing, but these systems are far from perfect. As an example, students may have more opportunities to cheat when enrolled in an online program.
Without supervision, students could receive assistance on an exam from various sources. Some universities have invested in solutions for remote proctoring — enabling a professor to view students as they complete a test — but other institutions have yet to address the vulnerability. It may cause problems in the future.
An overdependence on digital technology might result in other issues. Many students have difficulty navigating their university’s online portal, and they may run into complications with outdated or missing information. Complaints about the course scheduling process are relatively common on college campuses.
Education professionals will need to consider these obstacles as they implement the latest technologies. With the widespread adoption of these systems outside a college setting, teachers have to acclimate to the changes. This, in itself, may present a challenge to those who aren’t as familiar with modern tech.

Moving Forward
Students and teachers have access to a wide variety of modern systems that streamline the learning process. The equipment and software in the sections above are only a partial view of a much bigger picture. With each passing year, new innovations enter the market, improving and expanding on outdated methods.
However, these solutions may complicate things, even as they help. Education professionals should prepare for some of the vulnerabilities inherent in digital systems, whether they research remote proctoring or refine the quality of their websites. Only then will they enjoy the full benefits of higher education technology while mitigating risk.
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Digital Philosophy!24/08/2019Discussion51
3165Left-wing, right-wing, an outdated concept
For at least two centuries, the political battle in most democracies has been between conservatives ... read more >>
1 Jacques Attali
A New Dawn in Politics!11/08/2019Discussion51
3164The decline of the West is not an accident of course
Worried to see the European civilization wither away, as a historian, I give my thoughts and ... read more >>
1 David Engels
A New Dawn in Politics!10/08/2019Discussion51
3163On a powder keg, once again

The terrifying accident at the Russian weapons and ammunition warehouse in Achinsk, Russia, not ... read more >>
1 Jacques Attali
A New Dawn in Politics!10/08/2019Discussion51
3162La religion de la croissance est en train de tuer la vie sur Terre

L’expo part de mes débuts : les lions. Ce sont eux qui m’ont appris la photo. J’étais un ... read more >>
1 Yann Arthus-Bertrand
Mother Nature!25/07/2019Discussion11
3161Benefits of lean manufacturing
Customer expectations of reliable quality and rapid delivery forces today’s manufacturers to ... read more >>
1 Adam Robinson
Industry 4.0!23/07/2019Discussion51
3160To revolutionise road infrastructure in the UK
Highways England has become the latest company to partner with the Graphene Engineering ... read more >>
1 Charlotte Jones
The Roads of the Future!22/07/2019Discussion
3159Love and evolutionary psychology
If you have experienced love, you know its power. The intoxicating emotion has been credited with ... read more >>
1 Sara R. Lentz
Evolutionary Love!20/07/2019Discussion
3158How to trigger buying decisions in the brain
Did you know that billions of dollars are wasted on ads that fail to grab attention or motivate ... read more >>
1 Christophe Morin
Customer Centricity!19/07/2019Discussion
3157Teaching peace means healing souls
It is completely vain to preach peace and non-violence without taking charge of the inner condition ... read more >>
1 Marco Guzzi
3156EEG-Based emotion recognition algorithm
A new model to reveal a full emotional profile
The study aimed to create and develop an emotion ... read more >>
1 Igor Zimin
Customer Centricity!17/07/2019Discussion
3155Understanding time in the brain
“Time is passing too fast!” Many of us use that phrase every day when we feel like our kids are ... read more >>
1 Lisa M.P. Munoz
The Nature of Time!16/07/2019Discussion
3154To create electricity from plastic waste
The University of Chester’s Energy Centre at Thornton Science Park is working with PowerHouse ... read more >>
1 University of Chester
Breakthrough Technologies!15/07/2019Discussion
3153New prototype of maglev train
A sleek prototype of a high-speed train unveiled recently in China is designed to carry passengers ... read more >>
1 Tom Metcalfe
Sustainable Mobility!13/07/2019Discussion
3152Innovative solutions to enhance cybersecurity
In recent years, our world has become hyper-connected, and while that offers many substantial ... read more >>
1 Itai Green
Internet 2.0!12/07/2019Discussion
3151 Higher education technology to inspire innovation
The standard methods of teaching are beginning to shift with the integration of new systems and ... read more >>
1 Kayla Matthews
Breakthrough Technologies!12/07/2019Discussion