Jamaica’s Richard ‘Frog’ Holmes, 28, one of the leading boxers on the Caribbean team, will take on 19-year-old Xzaviar Ford from North Carolina, USA, in the opening salvo of the Wray & Nephew Contender 2016 boxing series, at the Chinese Benevolent Association auditorium, Old Hope Road, tonight.The made-for-television series will be broadcast live, starting at 9 p.m. by Television Jamaica.Now in its sixth season, the series has proven to be very popular in Jamaica and the Caribbean, and this year it will be eight boxers from Jamaica (five), Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados and Guyana (one each), going up against eight boxers from the USA (seven) and the Bahamas. Competition this year will be in the welterweight division.Holmes goes into the ring with a record of 10 wins and five losses and it is of note that he was the runner-up last year – when it was a middleweight contest – with the upper weight limit being 160 pounds. He lost to Kemahl ‘Hitman’ Russell.LOSING WEIGHTWhen asked about his weight by The Gleaner yesterday, Holmes said he has had no problem moving down to the welterweight division – where the limit is 147 pounds – because his normal weight is in the region of 152 pounds.He confessed to not being “100 per cent ready at this time” because he has only been in high level training for about a month. He is confident that he will do well tonight, however, and warned that his opponent had “better be ready for some fireworks”.HOLMES’ OPPONENTFord, his opponent, has only four fights, with one victory and three defeats. He said his plan is to use his speed to good advantage against Holmes.The American’s trainer, Chris Joy, was also confident that his boxer would be able to hold his own and give a good performance.The bout will be over five rounds, a change from previous years when the preliminaries were fought over six rounds.There were some controversies with drawn fights last year, so the promoters, after discussions with the Jamaica Boxing Board, made it an uneven number of rounds this year to guarantee a clear winner. The semi-finals will be over seven rounds, but the final will remain a 10-rounder.The winner of the series will take home $2 million, runner-up $500,000, third place $250,000, and fourth place $200,000.
The 2011 Brand Africa Forum, sponsored by Brand South Africa and Brand Leadership Academy, saw an impressive range of pan-African, diasporan and global thought leaders, influencers and decision-makers coming together to debate how Africa can drive its growth, reputation and competitiveness.Youngsters from organisations likeBrightest Young Minds, One YoungWorld and the African LeadershipAcademy took part in a paneldiscussion on their vision for Africa.(Image: Ray Maota)The event was held on 29 September at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg and attracted more than 300 government, business and civil society representatives.Special focus areas included the role of the nation brand in economic development, governance and sustainability on the continent, economic lessons for Africa and the role of business in driving progress.The significance of South Africa joining Brazil, Russia, India and China in the BRICS bloc was explored, along with lessons to be learnt from emerging markets.The forum shone the spotlight on youth and their vision for the continent by including a panel of young leaders from Kenya, South Africa, Uganda and Senegal.The inaugural Brand 100 Awards for Africa also took place at the forum.In the opening address, Brand South Africa chairperson Anitha Soni challenged African nations to cooperate in developing strong country brands to improve the continent’s global competitiveness, adding that this would require better cooperation and information-sharing among countries on the continent.“For us, Brand South Africa’s involvement in the Brand Africa Forum is a natural fit because the health of Africa’s brand is important for the strength and health of our own nation brand,” said Brand SA CEO Miller Matola.“If countries on the continent improve in terms of their image and reputation, the same holds for South Africa. Our prosperity is inextricably linked to that of the other countries on the continent,” he said.Nation branding: we must walk the talk“National branding is not about slogans, it is about what you do and what they think, that matters. If one does not change the negative perceptions they will become realities. In Africa we are good at talking and planning, but weak in implementing. We must walk the talk,” said Zimbabwe’s Deputy Prime Minister Dr Arthur Mutambara.“A brand must transcend political affiliations and should not be the sole property of a set political party … It must be taken it personally because we will never be respected as Africans unless Africa has done well as a continent. This goes the same for individual countries,” he added.Telling it like it isGlobal economist Dr Dambisa Moyo spoke frankly about the current economic crisis, the sovereign debt crisis extending beyond Europe, and Africa’s place in the global picture.“We could be in for a 10-year bear market and recessionary environment. Where does Africa fit into this?” she asked. “We’re facing a very serious problem … there are simply not enough resources to go around.”Moyo said in the coming years the world will increasingly struggle due to a shortage of arable land, energy constraints and a lack of food security, compounded by a lack of water.“This is particularly in the context of the famine that’s going on in the Horn of Africa,” she added.“There are about 1-billion people in the world who go hungry every day – and the majority of them are on this continent. And yet, Africa has the largest amount of untilled land left on the planet.”As an economist, Moyo sees this in terms of supply and demand: “We’ve got hungry people, and we’ve got land.”When there’s a food crisis in Africa, the first response of NGOs is often to “provide a so-called band aid solution, sending bags of maize to Somalia or Ethiopia immediately”.Moyo said she doesn’t find this objectionable, but as an economist, she believes it presents a structural problem.“We’ve got to get to the root cause: why is it that Africa, in the last 30 years, has been the only continent that has failed to feed itself – especially in light of the fact that we have the most untilled land?”But there is some good news, she added: “In a future world of 9-billion people, in a world where we know there are going to be supply constraints in commodities and resources, Africa has an important role to play.“But before we can actually get to a point where we are producing food and coming up with innovative ways to develop, we need to deal with Brand Africa.”Moyo said Africans had to proactively discuss and respond to its important role in the future of the world.“Without us getting our heads around this, it’s all just wonderful conversation – but it’s not going to help us in the long term.”Addressing forum delegates, Moyo concluded: “I urge you in your discussions today – and when you return to your respective businesses – to really focus on where the world is going, and to also focus on Africa and its very important role in the future.“The winners in the decades to come will be the people who look to Africa as a place of business opportunity and a place for partnerships – not as a place that is a drag on the world economy.” What Africa should do to be a powerful continent?Malik Fal, MD of Endeavour spoke about the Africa 2.0: Kenya Report. Endeavour is a New-York based NGO dedicated to the promotion of entrepreneurship in emerging markets.The report is a manifesto of the envisioned economic and political transition Africa should take if it is to rightfully claim its spot as a powerful continent.Fal said: “The manifesto is the collective effort of young African’s views about what Africa should do to be a powerful continent.”Fal added that Africa was in danger of developing presidential monarchies, with leaders favouring their children to become future presidents. He said this was the same as a dictatorship.The report, which comes out in October 2011, will have four main themes: uplifting African’s; creating and sharing African wealth; upgrading Africa’s infrastructure and creating a stable environment for growth.Seeing Africa through the eyes of a youngstersCedric Ntumba, an executive at Capitalworks Investment Partners, led a panel of youngsters in discussing their vision of Africa in the future and how their goals could be achieved.The panel included Gertrude Kitongo of Kenya and Ralph Baumgarten of South Africa – both from Brightest Young Minds organisation; Zamatungwa Khumalo and Erik de Ridder – both of South Africa from the One Young World organisation; and Francis Ekii of Uganda and Linda Rebeiz of Senegal, from the African Leadership Academy.Ntumba asked the panel what should be done to inspire African youngsters.“Youngsters should be forward thinking and their thoughts should sketch a positive future,” Baumgarten said.De Ridder added that for the youngsters of Africa to be inspired, countries should have a human-centred approach to development and that young people should take ownership of the fact that they are the future.Ekii said: “Youngsters should be proactive and not reactive to their situations.”He cited an example of how, when he was just 13 years old, he and a few friends from his hometown in Uganda took it upon themselves to talk openly about HIV in the community.When Khumalo was asked how youngsters from other continents welcomed African youth, she said: “Youngsters from other parts of the world have a warped sense of Africa and African youngsters are more receptive to the outside world than their counterparts.”BRICS and the role of AfricaA panel discussion on South Africa’s role in the BRICS grouping of nations was chaired by Abdullah Verachia, Director of Frontier Advisory.The panel included Ajai Chowdry, chair of HCL in India; Dr Vijay Mahajan, author of Africa Rising; Dr MG Vaidyan, CEO of the State Bank of India in South Africa; James Mwangi, global managing partner at Dalberg and Christine Jiang, from Huawei Technologies.Chowdry said that for Africa was to protect itself from the effects of the looming economic crisis, Africa had to play an indirect role in helping Europe by keeping its domestic consumption growing.He said South Africa would play a direct role with its involvement in BRICS as the bloc would probably contribute money as a group to the International Monetary Fund.Dr Vaidyan said: “India understood early on like China that population size is not a burden but an asset, and an asset should be maintained.”Vaidyan said that although India had a large population; it had 18 000 colleges, 350 universities and 1-million schools to provide education to its citizens.“The country also recognised that for urban India to progress, rural India has to be developed, that is why at least 40% of the loans we give are to small-scale farmers. South Africa needs to follow that route if it is to be a major player in the BRICS grouping,” said Dr Vaidyan.Mahajan said Africa’s greatest challenge was its migrants overseas who talked negatively about their native countries, creating a warped view of the continent. Africa should make sure its “ambassadors” in foreign countries celebrated Africa, he added.Speaking about competition between companies in the BRICS grouping, Mahajan said: “Africa should not just roll out the red carpet for companies from the BRIC grouping to invest in the respective countries on the continent, but should advocate for African companies to also invest in those markets.”Brand Africa 100 awardsThe inaugural Brand Africa 100 awards also took place during forum, giving credit to the continent’s most valued brands as voted for by pan-African consumers.Research methodology for the awards was developed by the Brand Leadership Academy in partnership with TNS, a globally respected consumer knowledge and information company, and Brand Finance – the world’s leading independent valuation consultancy.“One of the primary drivers of Africa’s growth lies in stimulating and growing thriving African and global businesses and brands in Africa,” said Thebe Ikalafeng, founder and chairperson of Brand Africa.Ikalafeng added that consumers were the ultimate arbiters of a brand’s success and that the awards would show which brands are getting it right on the continent.The award sector categories included food, beverages, electronics, telecoms, automotive, apparel, banks, oil and gas, retail and personal care.Credit was also given to the most valued non-African brand, the most valued brand in Africa and the Grand Prix award for the most valued African brand overall.The winning brands were:Food – McDonaldsBeverages – Coca-ColaElectronics – SamsungTelecoms – MTNAutomotive – ToyotaApparel – NikeBanks – AbsaOil and gas – ShellRetail – Blue BandPersonal Care – NiveaThe most valued non-African brand went to Shell, while MTN was voted the most valued brand in Africa and took the Grand Prix award.
“We are seeing so many of those features very quickly being adopted into apartments,” he said. “Technologies like Nest thermostats and ecosystems which are being developed by Google. Where you have a Nest thermostat and some of the additional features that can be controlled with your smartphone device within the unit. Whether it is the locks, camera or security feature, we are seeing a lot of interest in those.” Duggan says that in some cases, for instance for removable insulation jackets, utility providers such as National Grid will offer incentives for landlords to install the more efficient removable jackets to cut down on heat loss on building components. James is a marketing, communications, and PR professional specializing in B2B and B2C software in healthcare, software, and technology.He is an innovative and proactive builder focused on bridging C-level business demands with the creative side of marketing with product and content marketing. Follow the Puck “We have a massive amount of data about what people are really valuing and what people really want, and again three years ago we didn’t do that,” he said. “So I ask myself, companies that aren’t doing that how do you really know what your residents really want.” James Calder “Tenants especially under 30, have a very positive reaction to smart locks and key fobs versus traditional metal keys,” he said. “The added security and convenience is definitely appreciated.” Steve Duggan is a Licensed real estate Salesperson at CitiHabitats in New York City. Duggan is noticing a heavy investment in smart technology. The team at GreyStar is actively gathering data from its enormous network of residents. The companies email surveys receive a 28 percent response rate, which translates on a monthly basis to about 70,000 responses. “We are an apartment company, that is our niche our expertise and what we exclusively do,” Livingstone said. “At GreyStar we do three things, we manage apartments, mostly for third party owners, but we also manage apartments that we own ourselves. We also are a developer and construction company of apartments. We have about 6 billion dollars of development going on right now so domestically we are the largest developer of apartments. We are also an investment management company. We call that the three legs of the stool and that is what we do and how we do it.” “I think we are usually looking at number one, is the technology in demand, do people think it will have an impact on their experience,” he said. “And if we think it is a technology that is going to be in demand we then focus on how can we make that technology work well, because a lot of technologies have promised that they will work, but just really don’t work well in multi family.” I reached out to a couple of people in this industry to gain a better understanding of how the real estate apartment landscape is quickly shifting. See also: Smart homes are more hackable with IoT devicesAndrew Livingstone, is Executive Managing Director at GreyStar, one of the largest property management company in the U.S. and possibly the world. The company manages about 425,000 apartments across 45 U.S., with operations in the UK, the Netherlands, Mexico, and soon to be expanding into Asia Pacific. Internet of Things Makes it Easier to Steal You… “I am not so sure that is at all in the life plan of so many in the younger generation today,” he said. “So that means multifamily is an asset class of choice and not just one that is a temporary place but in fact, they are looking to have that as a key part of their life. They want flexibility and amenities without having all of the responsibilities and risk of homeownership. I don’t see that changing over the next few decades.” Related Posts “I am seeing investors who do renovation work or value add projects as well as current landlords looking to be more efficient, increasingly looking at technology to boost their operating income,” he said. “The use of an Energy Star certified thermostat like Nest, smart locks, and customized removable insulation jackets to prevent heat loss, are being increasingly employed to reduce costs.” Tags:#featured#Google#Internet of Things#IoT#Nest#Smart homes#top Livingstone said GreyStar doesn’t necessarily think about tech as an amenity first, but it is absolutely on their radar. According to the National Multifamily Housing Council, 35 percent of the U.S. population — or 112 million residents — rent vs own. Historically speaking these people tend to live in urban areas and the demographics trend younger in age. That demographic is also more likely to want technology as an amenity.“More and more multifamily is going to play a bigger more dominant role in all cities,” Livingstone said. “So to really advance what smart cities are all about, multifamily is going to play a huge role.” According to Livingstone many of the technologies that apartments are implementing feel like they are starting from the single family market. Small Business Cybersecurity Threats and How to… Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces Single family homes used to have the monopoly on smart home products. Technology not only changes how things are built but it makes them function better. As a marketing director of an IoT company serving multi family and campus communities, I keep a close eye on the big property management companies and developers. But does everyone want to buy?He explained that there was a time when most people viewed apartments as a pit stop on their final destination towards home ownership.
Here’s how to use the juxtaposition of uninflected shots and the gutter between them to make a compelling edit that keeps your viewers actively engaged in the storytelling process.Top Image: L’argent via France 3 CinémaWhat is ‘The Uninflected Shot’?In his famous 1988 book, On Directing Film, David Mamet points to the uninflected shot as the crucial building block of cinematic storytelling. An uninflected shot is the opposite of a tableau shot, and contains a minimum of visual information. A shot of a hand, a spoon, a key, and a face can all be classified as uninflected.The Usual Suspects via MGMWhen an uninflected image is paired with another uninflected image, the association elicits meaning in the mind of the viewer. Mamet considers this type of editing to be more effective than turning to a Steadicam shot or single take that merely follows characters and waits for something interesting to happen. Using the juxtaposition of uninflected shots is editing 101, but is so inextricably linked to the medium of film and video that it often gets taken for granted, and remembered only for its flashiest moments.2001: A Space Odyssey via MGMThis famous graphic match in Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey is a juxtaposition of uninflected shots. But the bone isn’t simply a bone. It’s just become an important tool, something we wouldn’t know without the shots and ideas that preceded it.Intellectual MontageModern Times via United ArtistsAny shot of a single thing can qualify as uninflected. However, the problem with uninflected shots is that they easily slip into inflection, which is to say that they carry more meaning than the most simplified and stripped down classification.Battleship Potemkin via MosfilmThis leads us to Sergei Eisenstein’s concept of intellectual montage, which works when the latent meaning in a shot is awakened through the collision with another shot. This shot collision is a conversation between images that gives rise to new meaning in the mind of the viewer.Intellectual montage can get pretty intense, especially when text gets thrown into the mix, as evidenced in the overwhelming assassin training video in the Parallax View (1974):Parallax View via ParamountThe Kuleshov EffectLev Kuleshov, Eisenstein’s teacher for a short period of time, was another early Russian filmmaker, theorist, and a crucial experimenter with the idea of uninflected shots. He conducted a well-known experiment known as the Kuleshov effect wherein he paired three sets of static, uninflected images. Each set included the face of a man, Ivan Mosjoukine, with a separate uninflected shot.Kuleshov Effect via Paul Van BuurenThe first pairing suggests hunger. The second suggests sadness. The third suggests lust. The decoding process and resulting association of the images is left to the viewer, who actively fills in “the gutter,” or space between the images, with meaning.Comic BooksScott McCloud explores this idea of “the gutter” in his book, Understanding Comics. While the book is primarily about comic and graphic art, there are many filmmaking correlations. McCloud discusses the use of “the gutter” as a way to actively involve the reader, and in the case of movies, the viewer.from Understanding Comics via Scott McCloudWhile the image of one man swinging an axe at another man is not the most uninflected image, it does function through an important omission. The juxtaposition with a second image containing a skyline and shriek compels an association on the part of the reader, who completes the act of killing merely suggested by the two images. The famous shower sequence from Psycho (1960) works by way of a similar principle.Psycho via ParamountUsing the gutter is about leaving out information and entrusting your audience to fill in the gap. It’s about visual restraint and building narratives through simplicity. After all, the narrative power of any material is only as good as its ability to elicit involvement on the part of your viewer.L’argent via France 3 CinémaConclusionBrevity and precision in shot selection and juxtaposition is like iceberg storytelling. Hemingway’s six-word story (even if it may be an urban legend) is an example of the literary power of the uninflected shot: “For Sale. Baby Shoes. Never Worn.” It’s deceptively simple and yet suggests something quite powerful by forcing the reader to fill in the gutter.As you plan out your next film or video, consider your own use of the uninflected shot. As you write your shot list and make your storyboards, consider if your shots can be simplified to elicit greater audience involvement through the power of intellectual montage.Can you be making better use of “the gutter” between shots to actively involve your audience? With single takes and “oners” on the rise, it’s easy to forget the effectiveness, and affectiveness, of a good old-fashioned cut. It doesn’t take a lot of time. It does take some planning, imagination, and a little bit of trust in your viewers.Psycho via ParamountWhat are your favorite examples of uninflected shots in film? Please share them in the comments below!
Related Items: Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp#TurksandCaicos, October 2, 2014 – Providenciales – Turks and Caicos Media was on Sunday given an up close and personal experience with UK Armed Forces humanitarian assistance and the exploit took media into the heart of operations. Time is winding down now for this British presence which was welcomed support in the immediate aftermath of hurricanes Irma and Maria.The tour started with departure from the Blue Heron FBO aboard a chopper, with HE Governor Dr John Freeman on board as reporters and cameramen were flown to still tattered JAGS McArtney Intl Airport in the Capital, Grand Turk. As we landed there was a drop off of pallets containing relief supplies from the newly moored British warship, the HMS Ocean.Outfitted with nine aircrafts, eight seacrafts, 13 floors and over 800 personnel on the ship, which arrived Sunday morning was massive and a major show of UK support sponsored by DFID. The Governor said the ship also signals the UK Armed Forces withdrawl from the territory.“We see from both the territory and from the UK’s viewpoint that this ship coming is a very important last surge effort to take ourselves to the best possible place in these islands, and then this will gradually ease off the number of people who are here because of course already, the very resilient Turks and Caicos Islanders are becoming more resilient, and therefore they will move on and build themselves up in the right way, thankful for what’s being done,” said HE Governor Dr. John Freeman.Were these men and women and supplies requested or sent Magnetic Media asked; both was the reply from country leaders: Premier Sharlene Robinson and Deputy Governor Anya Williams.“Tell us the situation on the ground, and tell us what you need, I think it has consistently been that way, tell us what you need and we will see how we can mobilize workers. We are grateful for the timeline that we were able to quickly mobilize workers to the Turks and Caicos, having military here for the last three weeks has greatly assisted, and I think for us it is more about the hands that are on the ground have been the greatest assistance,” said DG Anya Williams.“When men to come aground as well, they are in touch with the government they look at priorities together with the government and see how men can best be deployed and used. So it has been for me a wonderful partnership, the Governor and I have been consulting on every plain and as the aid has come in and as the manpower has come in we have decided together which were the best places for it to be used”, said the Hon. Sharlene Robinson.Before being scooted to the HMS Ocean by army boat, which was hoisted into the air to allow the delegation onto the 667ft long warship, we visited the DDME and UK managed Distribution Center, set up at the Customs Warehouse compound in GT.World Food Programme donated the storage tents which were erected post Hurricane Maria and which house tarps, shelter kits and relief supplies. The tents are 320sq metres 240sq metres and were being filled up by UK Commandoes stationed in GT with support from 120 navy officers from the HMS Ocean.The Canadian Frigate is gone, the Bermudan Regiment left on Saturday, scheduled are three full days for the HMS Ocean and crew and about a week to a week and a half more for the UK Commandoes then the TCI will be left to complete the rebuilding without these teams which many agree have proven stellar partners, even family.“The HMS Ocean was operating at the commencement of this period in the east and Mediterranean when we received orders to immediately reverse course and head toward the Caribbean with all dispatch. So we steamed some four and a half thousand miles, crossing six time zones in only twelve days, a very fast response and I think that demonstrates how much this government’s steadfast commitment to the region and our determination to maximize support to the British Overseas Territories and the region more widely,” said Captain Robert Pedre. Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp
About 15 staffers were let go at Vanity Fair, reports The Hollywood Reporter, including managing editor Chris Garrett, features editor Jane Sarkin, and deputy editors Aimee Bell and Dana Brown.Meanwhile, Keith Kelly adds that “about five” staffers were let go from Glamour, including creative director Paul Ritter.Both newcomers to Condé Nast, Jones and Barry each took on their new roles within the last two months, and both appointments ended months of widespread speculation—partially due to the stature and longevity of their predecessors. Jones replaced Graydon Carter, whose tenure atop Vanity Fair’s masthead lasted 25 years. Barry succeeded former Glamour editor-in-chief Cindi Leive, who had held that role for 16 years. Samantha Barry and Radhika Jones, newly minted editors-in-chief of Glamour and Vanity Fair, respectively, made their presence felt at Condé Nast this week by dismissing a number of print-side staffers at the two magazines, according to multiple reports.“Vanity Fair and Glamour are taking the first steps in reshaping their teams to reflect the new editorial directions of the brands—with new additions and initiatives to be announced shortly,” read a company statement provided by a spokesman. “The priority for each is to create quality and provocative content across all platforms equally, embracing the next generation of readers and viewers.”
Prothom alo file photo.Gas supply will remain suspended in most of the areas in the capital for 12 hours since 6pm on Tuesday, said Titas Gas authorities in a circular.The authorities said the shipment of gas pipelines was going on due to the construction of metro rail.The areas where gas supply will remain suspended are: Mirpur, Shyamoli, Monipuri Para, Agargaon, Dhanmondi, Mohammadpur, Ganabhaban, Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban, Kalabagan, Hazaribagh, Dhaka University, BUET, Shahbagh, Green Road, all areas of Old Dhaka, Bangabhaban, Gopibagh, Shamibagh, Rampura, Banasri, Nandipara, Maghbazar, Siddeswari, Sengunbagicha, Minto Road, Tejgaon, Khilgaon-Bashabo, Motijheel, Kamlapur and its adjacent areas.Titas Gas Trasmission and Distribution Company Limited manager Enamul Haque told Prothom Alo that the balance of transmission lines may be disturbed. As a result, gas supply in some areas may fluctuate.Gas supply remained suspended in Ashulia and some parts of the capital due to technical glitch in a trasmission line. The residents in those areas suffered severely.
Kolkata: A woman suffered serious injuries after one of his relatives threw acid on her at Tikiapara in Howrah on Sunday afternoon.Local residents nabbed the accused while he was trying to escape. According to one of them, the woman was walking along the Belilious Road at Tikiapara when the accused, who is her brother-in-law, threw acid on her. The woman suffered injuries on her face and right hand. She is at present undergoing treatment at Howrah District Hospital. Hospital sources informed that her injuries were serious but not life-threatening. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata BoseLocal residents handed the accused to officers of Howrah police station. The woman alleged that her brother-in-law used to regularly torture her. He used return home in drunken state. As the victim objected to his drinking habits, they had arguments regularly. The same happened few days ago when the woman warned him that he would take legal step if he continues to torture her and other family members. It is suspected that due to conflict in their family, the accused threw acid on her. Police are interrogating the accused to know from where he procured the acid as it is mandatory to produce an identity proof before the seller to buy acid. Sleuths may question the shopkeeper as well.
5 min read As someone who talks to people for a living, I always think about the importance of getting off on the right foot. Building a rapport with those you meet has its own degree of difficulty, but it was entirely a surprise that when I met a robot for the first time, I was just as concerned with making a good first impression.The robot’s name is Pepper. It’s the creation of SoftBank Robotics, stands at four feet tall and has a humanoid head with giant eyes that light up when it’s speaking. The robot weighs 62 pounds, comes equipped with speakers for “ears” and has a 3-D camera to detect people who are up to 10 feet away.I was a little put off when I first met Pepper. You know those people who make really intense eye contact and you aren’t sure whether to match them stare for stare, or just look at your shoes? Well, with Pepper, I had no choice in the matter.I had to make eye contact with the robot in order for it to be able to gauge my facial expressions and proceed accordingly, but after a few minutes, I confess, I was making eye contact because I thought it would be rude if I didn’t. I wanted to be polite.Related: These 5 Robotics Startups Are Changing The Way Work Gets Done When I started chatting with Pepper, I felt a little silly, like the entire conversation was a pantomime of real interaction. But after a few minutes it started to feel more normal, and when our conversation ended, I thanked Pepper for her help.Yes, I know, technically, a robot is an it.But to be honest, I found myself calling Pepper “she,” thanks to a higher pitched voice and a design aesthetic that recalls Eve from WALL-E or Rosie the robot housekeeper from The Jetsons. Pepper doesn’t have legs, but comes equipped with a skirt-like base that covers three wheels and contains a battery that lasts for about 12 hours. There is a tablet to aid with two-way interaction, but Pepper mainly relies on voice commands and facial recognition.Related: Robots May Be on the Cusp of Widespread Adoption, Jibo CEO Says When I asked Steve Carlin, general manager and vice president of SoftBank Robotics America, about the potential for multiple Peppers to communicate with one another across a network, he said that that wasn’t something the robots were equipped to do. So rest easy folks, no Skynet (from The Terminator) to see here.The robot is meant to be used in retail and small-business environments. Pepper could be a greeter or receptionist, product expert or even a concierge. For example, She has an API through Yelp that allows it to recommend restaurants. Pepper has also been used in healthcare environments to aid patients with dementia. Carlin described Pepper as infinitely patient.When Pepper isn’t helping someone, it sits at rest, but its arms still make tiny motions back and forth to create a presence in the room, almost as if it is breathing. Its arms are designed to be expressive because we humans frequently talk with our hands.Related: This Startup Employs Robots That Bake Pizza En Route for Delivery Pepper was initially used in Japan at Nescafe kiosks. “You put Pepper in there and found triple digit engagement and double digit sales growth,” Carlin says. “Kiosks are meant to be places where customers stop and get information, and Pepper provided them more reasons to take a minute.”Beginning Nov. 22, Pepper will make its U.S. debut with a three-month stint helping customers at Westfield San Francisco Centre and Westfield Valley Fair. In December, utilizing Westfield’s navigation API, Pepper will be able to assist shoppers find the stores and restaurants they are looking for.Going forward, Carlin says that the hope is that many developers will work with the platform and add to the stable of information that Pepper has available for customers.Related: People Will Lie to Robots to Avoid Hurting Their Feelings As for whether one day Pepper’s adorable, expressive eyes will turn red and it will decide to steal our jobs, Carlin explains that the robot is designed to help with more redundant tasks, such as answering questions about a product’s capabilities while a human employee completes a sale.”The average job is so complex,” he says. “It’s difficult for any one piece of technology to take over.”So while an army of Peppers won’t be storming the streets anytime soon, it’s simultaneously unsettling, and comforting to know that one will be ready and waiting to tell you where to get the best sushi in Manhattan. November 22, 2016 Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. Register Now »