Women’s Tennis Continues Play at ITA Central Regional

first_imgTess Herder and Kenya Williams were downed by fourth seeded Janet Koch and Anastasia Rychagova from Kansas, 8-4. Summer Brills and Joely Lomas topped by Minnesota’s Cammy Frei and Caroline Ryba 8-6. MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – The Drake University women’s tennis team had both of its doubles teams fall in the round of 32 at the USTA/ITA Central Regional Championships in Minneapolis. USTA/ITA Central Regional Championship Draws The Bulldogs will wrap up the weekend with exhibition matches on Sunday.  Print Friendly Versioncenter_img Story Links Brills dropped her singles match to Tulsa’s Mahitha Didireddy in three sets 6-3, 6-7, 1-0(4) in the quarterfinals of the consolation draw.last_img

Read More →

South African innovation to be seen through the eyes of top bloggers

first_imgThat’s why the Brand South Africa/IMC is bringing a group of top-notch US bloggers to SA in first week of December and hosting them on a first-of-its-kind 8-day tour that will showcase South Africa as an extraordinary nation of creative problem-solvers who do difficult things well. Travelling with the group will be two of South Africa best-known bloggers, Thoughtleader’s Ndumiso Ngcobo, author of “Some of My Best Friends are White”, and Nicholas Haralambous of SARocks.co.za,  along with Simon Barber, the IMC’s US Country Manager, who blogs at brandsouthafricablog.com.  Nich will also be blogging for the Homecoming Revolution website whilst on the trip.Armed with their laptops, cameras and digital recorders — and 3G wireless modems generously supplied by Vodacom to give them 24/7 access to the web – the bloggers will:1. Helicopter out to De Beers’ state of the art mining ship, Peace in Africa, off the west coast;2. Get a close look for South Africa’s green technology, including the Joule electric car and the Darling wind farm;3. See the sun set over the Richtersveld;4. Descend 3.7 kilometres to the ore face at Anglogold Ashanti’s Tau Tona mine, the world’s deepest;5. Hike in the Magaliesberg with an innovative programme to rescue troubled youth;6. Overnight in Soweto to get a feel for its history and transformation;7. Visit Soccer City to get the latest on 2010;8. Drink a little wine with the folks from Stormhoek winery who  pioneered the use of web-based social networks to be an internationally-respected brand;9. And much, much more on a remarkable itinerary assembled with the invaluable help of the well-known science-writer, author, educator and blogger Graeme Addison.As they go, the bloggers will be posting on their experiences and impressions in words, pictures, video and sound.  Their posts will be aggregated at a special site, www.weblogtheworld.com , and also available as an RSS feed. Photos will be posted to flickr, videos to YouTube and Zoopy.Explaining the thinking behind the tour, IMC’s Barber said: “The beauty of the Internet, blogs and technologies like Facebook, YouTube, Zoopy and Twitter, is that everyone can now be a storyteller and, with a little luck and flair, have their story heard by millions.“We’re going to be creating all kinds of great content on this tour.  We hope our posts will generate tons of links from other blogs, Facebook pages and the like. We hope lots of people will not just watch our videos on YouTube and Zoopy but embed them, along with the tour’s RSS feed and flickr stream, on their own sites. That’s what we’re working to achieve.”Emphasising the importance of user-generated-content, Barber continued: “If you’re in the market for almost any product or service these days, and you have an Internet connection, the net is your buyer’s guide.  You don’t need to listen to sales pitches or succumb to slick ads. You go online and get recommendations from people your trust, other consumers, your peers. That’s the new reality for everyone in the marketing business.“As the custodian of Brand South Africa, the International Marketing Council’s job is to see that South Africa’s story is told compellingly, convincingly and, above all – because you can neither compel nor convince otherwise – authentically.“One way to do that is to empower South Africans to use the Internet to talk about the country they love and get themselves heard. Another is to amplify the voices of visitors when they record and share their overwhelmingly positive experiences here. Nothing beats a good third party endorsement.”Barber cited the example of Kevin DeSouza, an assistant professor at the University of Washington’s School of Information, who  spent a couple of months teaching at Wits earlier this year.  Here’s a link to what he wrote in his blog when he left:  http://kevindesouza.blogspot.com/. As the comments at the bottom of the post show, it had an impact. Shirley Meyer wrote:  “Very grateful for the review. I have wanted to visit for a while, but was too worried (nervous). I must buy my ticket now. Thanks a million.”The US bloggers are:       1. Renee Blodgett and Ray Lewis (www.downtheavenue.com),       2. Zadi Diaz (www.zadidiaz.com),       3. Mona Gable (www.huffingtonpost.com/mona-gable),       4. John Gartner (www.matternetwork.com),       5. Chris Morrison (www.venturebeat.com),       6. David Sasaki (www.globalvoices.org),       7. Graeme Wood (www.theamericanscene.com,www.thesmartset.com ,www.theatlantic.com)       8. Eliane Fioret (www.ubergizmo.com). For further information, please contact: Simon Barber, US Country ManagerCell: +1 202 276 5084Office +1 202 657 5758 / +1 202 432 5607From November 28: +27 76 822 7365Skype name: barber.comEmail: barber.simon@gmail.comDownload this article in PDF format. [367kb]last_img read more

Read More →

Terrible loss leads to celebration of a legacy in Athens County

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest What started as a heartbreaking story of loss and devastation in a small farm community was transformed into lasting legacy honoring the memory of a promising young man.With a bright future ahead, 18-year-old Noah Cox was tragically killed in late May in a tractor rollover accident while baling hay. Cox was a noted cattle showman who had multiple grand champion steer banners from the Athens County Fair. This was his last year of junior show eligibility.After the terrible loss of Cox this spring, his good friend Austin Pullins (also an accomplished steer showman) decided to finish out his market beef projects at the Ohio State Fair and the Athens County Fair. This set the stage for the early-August Athens County Junior Market Beef Show and the incredible livestock sale that followed.“When I walked into the fairgrounds I could feel it,” said Jason Langley, the Washington CH-based auctioneer from the Athens County Junior Fair Livestock Sale. “I’ve been selling down there for a number of years and there was just this quiet over the crowd. When you go to a fair sale there is usually a lot of energy and a lot of activity. When I walked in there I could feel it in the air and [Noah] not being there was a huge impact at the Athens County Fair.”The Athens County Fair Junior Market Beef Show was still fresh in everyone’s mind at the sale.“When Noah passed away his good friend Austin stepped in there to help get the steers ready and he won that show with Noah’s steer. It was the best steer in the barn. It wasn’t a feel-good situation for the judge. It was the best steer. I don’t even know if the judge knew the situation,” Langley said. “After they did that, Austin came in with his steer and got reserve champion. When the champion drive was on, Austin was in there showing Noah’s steer instead of his own. It was awesome for him to get that for Noah.”The sale then got off to its somber start.“They told me what happened and I knew it was going to be huge, even if he had placed last in the show. But how do you do this without taking away from the other kids? A group of business people from the area got together and put in money and called me with that amount of money. We sold the steer and there were eight or 10 buyers involved and that was $26,000, which is what the steer sold for in the ring. Then I gave the opportunity to the people in the crowd to donate to this. After it was all said and done, I collected an additional $37,050,” Langley said. “You talk about tears, goose bumps, hugs, cheers. It was unbelievable. It was what 4-H is all about and what agriculture is about — coming together as a community to support a young man and his family. It was a touching moment. If you can’t get excited about a story like this, I don’t know what you need. There was something like 40,000 views of the video from the auction.”In addition to the livestock sale proceeds, commemorative t-shirts were sold in memory of Noah Cox.“They started making a few and pretty soon they were making hundreds of these purple shirts and selling them and the proceeds go to a new barn they are putting up at the fairgrounds — a grooming barn at the end of the steer barn,” Langley said. “They have a tent there now but they are building this barn in his memory.”The purple shirts feature the phrase “Succeeding in the show ring of life” and more than 800 have been sold, with proceeds benefitting the Noah Cox Memorial Fund and Athens County 4-H and FFA members.Donations continued after the sale and by the next morning, the total contributions toward the sale and the Noah Cox Memorial Fund were over $70,000. The new building honoring Cox will be constructed before the 2018 Athens County Fair.The selection of the grand champion steer was a very emotional moment at the Athens County Fair. Photo by Raven Williams.last_img read more

Read More →

Ohio Pork Council wins national political advertising award

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The Ohio Pork Council received top honors at this year’s American Association of Political Consultants Pollie Award conference for their pig barn pop-up mail piece.The goal of this piece was to create an eye-catching visual education piece that would capture the audience’s attention. Once their attention was captured, this piece worked to relieve misconceptions about the pork industry by answering questions and increasing transparency of modern farming.The barn discussed several topics, such as technology, manure and pig feed. This piece was created in a format that could be hand delivered to neighbors or utilized in meetings with major policy decision makers.“The Ohio Pork Council is thrilled to receive this honor,” said Emily Bir, Director of Communications, Ohio Pork Council. “We look forward to distributing the pop-up mail piece to consumers, neighbors and leaders across Ohio looking for more information on modern pork farming.”Dubbed “the Oscars of political advertising” by Esquire magazine, the Pollies are the most prized and sought-after awards in the political communications and public affairs industries.last_img read more

Read More →

Android Phones Go to War

first_imgRole of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … sarah perez Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces Related Posts center_img Tags:#Google#mobile#web The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology Reports this week revealed that U.S. defense contractor Raytheon, maker of the Patriot missile defense system, is developing software for soldiers that runs on Google’s Android operating system. The software, called the Raytheon Android Tactical System, or RATS, has already been tested by some members of the U.S. Special Forces. It involves a social-networking type of display where soldiers interact as “buddies” and track each others’ movements on the battlefield. There’s an App for That! Social Networking for Soldiers, Military-Grade Satellite ImagesIf RATS takes off, soldiers would carry smartphones with them into battle, says this Reuters report released on Wednesday. However, the phones would run identity recognition software so that enemy forces would not be able to unlock the device if they ever got their hands on one of them.In addition to the soldier buddy tracking system described above, the Android OS could also support applications that deliver satellite images to the phone’s large color touchscreen. Military satellites can focus in on minute features you can’t see when using consumer-grade technology like Google Earth, so the software installed on RATS could potentially zero in on facial features or be used to read license plates. The phones running these military-level Android apps wouldn’t be standard Nexus Ones or Droids, of course, but specially designed handsets, each costing around $500 – the same price as unlocked consumer smartphones. So far, Raytheon has tested the software on handsets made by Motorola and HTC. Raytheon would also design and install GPS tracking and encryption onto the phones, as well as communication software to provide coverage where signals don’t exist.Google was a Big Help, Says RaytheonRaytheon credits Google for its help in the software’s development. Says Mark Bigham, VP for defense and civil mission solutions at Raytheon, “We’re trying to take advantage of smartphone technology to tailor for what soldiers may need in the field. Google has helped us push the limits of the phone.” Bigham also notes that Google would benefit financially if and when RATS became available to the defense market – a market that isn’t just limited to the U.S. Besides the U.S. Army, Bigham says the Indian military is another potential customer for this Android-based technology. last_img read more

Read More →

Passive House Certification: Looking Under the Hood

first_imgThe hot water budget is based on nine occupantsPHPP uses the TFA to calculate the domestic hot water budget and the Specific Primary Energy Demand, i.e., total “source” energy usage. (“Source” energy includes an adjustment factor to account for the energy losses during electricity generation and transmission losses from the power plant to the house.) The larger the TFA, the greater the number of expected occupants, and thus the more hot water and energy that the mythical 9.3 individuals will consume.So we expect our actual hot water and electricity usage will be substantially lower than PHPP predictions. When calculating floor area, PHPP obeys the WohnflächenverordnungThere was a substantial difference in the Treated Floor Area (TFA) that we calculated in our own PHPP results and the area calculated by the PHA, primarily due to how the large basement rec room was handled. RELATED ARTICLES [Editor’s note: Roger and Lynn Normand are building a [no-glossary]Passivhaus[/no-glossary] in Maine. This is the 20th article in a series that will follow their project from planning through construction.] No credit for the PV systemI will again climb onto my soapbox and rail against PHPP counting the contribution of a solar hot water system for domestic hot water production, but not the contribution of a photovoltaic (PV) system.With three adults who don’t consume much hot water, we are a poor fit for an investment in a solar hot water system. Solar thermal systems are more expensive than PV systems, they require more maintenance, and their production is wasted when we are away and no one is home to use the hot water.In contrast, PV is a better value, requires much less maintenance, has a much longer service life, and continues to earn a credit on our electric bill when we are away. (See an excellent blog on this topic entitled “Solar Thermal is Dead” by Martin Holladay.)We plan to install a heat-pump water heater in the basement. This appliance will very efficiently transfer ambient heat from the basement air to the water in the tank at a rate of nearly 3 units of hot water for every unit of energy used for the transfer.We will add a PV array to keep us at net-zero energy use. Interestingly, there appears to be no accounting within the PHPP calculations made by PHA for the energy transfer of basement heat to the hot water tank, even though our energy analyst Marc Rosenbaum suggested a methodology. As a follow-up to my last blog on attaining Passive House Design Stage Assurance, here are a few of my observations on the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP) results that the Passive House Academy (PHA) attained for EdgewaterHaus. PHPP is the software design tool developed by the Passivhaus Institut to evaluate whether a building’s energy performance meets the Passivhaus standard.I have no specific training in the philosophical logic, data entry, or actual calculations of PHPP, and am neither an architect nor a builder. Nonetheless, here are some of PHPP results that caught my attention. BLOGS BY ROGER NORMAND Looking Through Windows — Part 7Designing Superinsulated WallsCutting Down Trees and Milling LumberA Visit to the Local SawmillSeeing Red on a Green Property Appraisal — Part 1Seeing Red on a Green Property Appraisal — Part 2Seeing Red on a Green Property Appraisal — Part 3Can We Get More and Pay Less To Keep About The Same?Backup Electrical Power for a Passivhaus Project? Appliances and lightingWe will use all Energy Star appliances and a combination of CFL and LED lighting. Who would build a home to the Passivhaus standard and not use high-efficiency electrical devices?Yet PHA used standard values in PHPP for appliances and lighting. So a more accurate PHPP would reflect an even lower primary energy need. We asked and PHA also agreed to reflect this change.On the other hand, at a primary energy demand of 26 kBTU/ft2•yr, we are already well within the 38 kBTU/ft2•yr Passivhaus primary energy standard, so this will have little effect in our achieving Passivhaus certification. In a predominantly heating climate like Maine, it’s all about meeting the annual heat demand target of 4.8 kBTU/ft2•yr. According to the software, nine people will live in our housePHPP uses the TFA to establish how many people could live in the building, not how many will be there. This occupancy per square foot is wired into PHPP and cannot be changed.I suppose that makes sense, since a well-constructed building will house many generations of small to large sized families. But PHPP dictates, in a deep bow to German frugality vs. grander American expectations, that our 3,500-square-foot EdgewaterHaus should house 9.3 occupants! Wow! That’s a far cry from the three adults, one dog, and two cats who will actually live there.After construction is completed, we’ll have to recruit another 3.3 occupants to meet PHPP expectations – perhaps we’ll get a few more four-legged critters! Buffering effect of rooms outside the thermal envelopePHA assigned equal weighting to the buffering effects of the garage and the three-season room, both of which are outside the thermal envelope. These two rooms moderate the temperature differences between inside and outside the thermal envelope, but I don’t believe they do so equally.The garage has two eight-foot wide R-9 insulated garage doors; the walls, slab, and ceilings have minimal insulation; and there is no effort to minimize thermal bridges.In contrast, the three-season room faces due south, has lots of glazing, and is insulated identically to the rooms within the thermal envelope. The only exception is that the three-season room has double-pane instead of triple-pane windows.We asked PHA (and PHA agreed) to assign a higher buffering factor to the three-season room. TFA is a key variable in PHPP. Rather than consider overall exterior or interior building dimensions, PHPP uses the German Floor Area Ordinance, which measures the “clear width between building elements” excluding the area of chimneys, walls, columns, and stairs with more than three steps. There are many other caveats, e.g., there must be a clear height of 6.6 feet (rooms between 3.3 feet and 6.6 feet in height are added at 50 percent of the area); the rooms must be within the thermal envelope (that excludes our three-season room and the garage); storage and mechanical rooms inside the thermal envelope are included at 60 percent of the area.Our PHPP included the rec room room at 60 percent of its area, while PHA recognized it at 100 percent.The PHPP manual states “basement and secondary rooms or rooms not regarded as living spaces in the German ‘Wohnflächenverordnung’, but are located inside of the thermal envelope anyway and have a room height of at least 6.6 feet may be added to the treated floor area with 60% of their area.”I read ambiguity, intentioned or not, in this section of the PHPP manual. The operative word for me here is the “not” in the phrase “rooms not regarded as living spaces.” The rec room has a 9.5 foot ceiling height, two Bilco ScapeWEL venting windows for direct emergency egress, drywall-finished ICF walls and ceilings below with wood I-beam main floor (now required by U.S building codes for fire prevention), and will use a simple electric resistance heater when needed.I plan to use the space as a workshop, but the space certainly could be used as a modern-day “man-cave.” It is entirely reasonable to me to include the rec room as full-fledged living space, as PHA has done, rather than the 60 percent as we had done. In conventional terms, our home is 4,400 square feet divided equally between a main floor and basement. PHPP calculated a TFA of about 3,500 square feet. Passivhaus For BeginnersPassivhaus Practitioners Share Their Success StoriesFarmhouse Style Meets Passive HouseEnergy Modeling Isn’t Very AccurateNet-Zero-Energy versus Passivhaus How much precision do we need?I am baffled by several of the individual spreadsheets within PHPP.Since windows serve as the primary heat source for a Passivhaus building, they get a great deal of attention in PHPP. There is a spreadsheet to calculate for each individual window its degree of deviation from north, its angle of inclination from the horizontal, the window rough opening dimension, the glazing details, the frame material, the SHGC, the U-factors for the frame and glass, and the width of each side of the window frame.Wait, there’s more. Another spreadsheet calculates the thermal bridges for each window. Yet another spreadsheet calculates shading factors. Here again, for each individual window, we estimated the height and distance of any shading objects like trees or other buildings, and from the construction drawings the window reveal depth, the distance from glazing edge to reveal, the overhang depth, the distance from upper glazing edge to overhang, and a mysterious additional shading reduction factor. Yikes!I can appreciate much of the engineering rigor in the analysis. I remain a steadfast and ardent supporter of the Passivhaus approach to building design. But a small part of me is left wondering about the real-world value in this nth degree of PHPP precision. We are designing EdgewaterHaus for two adults plus an elderly parent, yet the PHPP energy load for the home is based on 9.3 occupants and excludes the contribution of the PV array. The first article in this series was Kicking the Tires on a Passivhaus Project. Roger Normand’s construction blog is called EdgewaterHaus.last_img read more

Read More →

Rules of Thumb for Ductless Minisplits

first_img Start Free Trial Already a member? Log in Sign up for a free trial and get instant access to this article as well as GBA’s complete library of premium articles and construction details. Since 2008, when Carter Scott built a pioneering Massachusetts house that was heated and cooled by just two ductless minisplits, GBA has endeavored to publish reports from the field to guide people designing homes that are heated and cooled by ductless minisplits. We’ve learned a lot on this topic since 2008.My article on Carter Scott’s approach to heating and cooling was called “Just Two Minisplits Heat and Cool the Whole House.” Since that article was published, builders, engineers, and researchers have shared their minisplit experience and data. Carter Scott has given technical presentations at several conferences (including the Westford Symposium on Building Science and NESEA’s BuildingEnergy conference); energy consultant Marc Rosenbaum has written several valuable articles on the topic for GBA (including “Minisplit Heat Pumps and Zero-Net-Energy Homes” and “Practical Design Advice for Zero-Net-Energy Homes”); and researchers Kohta Ueno and Honorata Loomis have published useful monitoring data (“Long-Term Monitoring of Mini-Split Ductless Heat Pumps in the Northeast”).We now have enough information on the use of ductless minisplits to heat and cool cold-climate homes to set out some rules of thumb. The nine rules of thumb that I present below are based on the work of Scott, Rosenbaum, Ueno, and Loomis, to whom I am indebted. 1. Design your building to have an excellent thermal envelope If you want to heat and cool your building with just one or two point-source heaters, you want an above-average thermal envelope. That means that the building needs a very low rate of air leakage; above-code levels of insulation; and high-performance windows. 2. Consider snow loads when placing outdoor units If you live in snow country, your outdoor unit needs to be protected by a roof — but not a roof that inhibits… center_img This article is only available to GBA Prime Memberslast_img read more

Read More →

Four Indian naval ships to take part in Malabar Exercise

first_imgNew Delhi, May 3 (PTI) Four Indian naval ships including two stealth frigates will take part in a trilateral exercise next month near the South China Sea which will see India, US and Japan playing war games in East of Okinawa.Defence sources said the two frigates along with a tanker and a corvette with integral helicopters will take part in Malabar Exercise which will be held from mid-June to the end of the month.Reacting sharply to Indias move in December last year of including Japan in the Indo-US Malabar naval exercises on a permanent basis, China had said that Tokyo will not “provoke confrontation” and “heighten tensions” in the region.China is in a territorial dispute with the Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei and Vietnam over the South China Sea issue. There are overlapping claims over the waters in that maritime region.The US, which had been pushing for Japans inclusion, has said the exercise is an important element for assessing the maritime capabilities of all the three countries.The US has in recent months ramped up its warnings over what it calls Chinas growing “militarisation” in the South China Sea.American warships and aircraft have undertaken number of operations in the region to challenge Chinas moves even as the US hopes to stitch Asian military powers into a closer cooperation.The US has also been pushing for a quadrilateral security dialogue involving itself, India, Japan and Australia. PTI SAP KND ZMN KNDlast_img read more

Read More →