WASHINGTON – The U.S. Army, under pressure to issue more protective gear to its soldiers in Iraq, has signed a $70 million emergency contract with a California company to rush ceramic body armor to the front lines. The sole-source contract, with California-based Ceradyne Inc., was approved last week and announced Friday. It comes on the heels of a Pentagon study that found side armor could have saved dozens of U.S. lives in Iraq. The Army is planning to buy 230,000 sets of the ceramic side plates. Army spokesman Paul Boyce said that one company will not be able to deliver that order in the time required, so additional vendors are being sought through an open-bid process. “Our goal is to continue providing the American soldier with the best, most protective body armor in the world,” Boyce said. “We are working with soldiers, commanders, the medical community and industry to continue these improvements while ensuring the safety of our soldiers.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESanta Anita opens winter meet Saturday with loaded card The company is expected to begin shipping the armor plates in January and to complete the order by May or June. Each of the side plates weighs 2 1/2 pounds. Earlier this week, Army Secretary Francis Harvey said he thought soldiers should be required to wear the ceramic side plates even though they added weight and may limit mobility. While his pronouncement was not an order, it reflected the military’s ongoing struggle to answer criticism that soldiers are going to war without the armor they need. Soldiers have said the added armor will weigh them down and limit their fighting flexibility.
After 18 months of research including fieldwork in the Northwest of Ireland, Harvard University Graduate School of Design (GSD) formally launched their findings of the ‘Atlas for a City Region’ project at a special event in Harvard University, Massachusetts yesterday (Thursday).The event was attended by the visiting delegation from Ireland North West led by Mayors Cllr. Nicholas Crossan and Cllr. Michaela Boyle from Donegal County Council and Derry City and Strabane District Council respectively and included Council Chief Executives Seamus Neely and John Kelpie.The project ‘Atlas for a City Region’ was jointly commissioned by both Donegal County Council and Derry City and Strabane District Council and has been borne out of the unique cross-border collaborative approach adopted by both Councils who are firmly of the view that despite Brexit and indeed the border, their region including Letterkenny, Derry and Strabane has the potential to continue to grow and prosper. The final report is structured around three questions. Is there a cross-border region in the Irish Northwest? How to draw that region on a map? And how might the region develop over the next two hundred years?In answering these questions, twenty-seven students from Harvard University travelled to the Northwest for fieldwork in spring 2019. One group of students gathered evidence of a cross-border region.Working with Niall Kirkwood, Professor of Landscape Architecture and Technology and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Harvard GSD, another twelve students imagined the future of the region in light of Brexit and changing climates.“If we don’t imagine the future, we have no hand in shaping it,” said Professor Gareth Doherty who was the lead investigator for this project and a native of Carndonagh in Co. Donegal. Speaking at the launch, Cllr. Nicholas Crossan, Mayor of Donegal County Council commended the work done by Harvard GSD students under the guidance of Professor Gareth Doherty, Director of the Landscape Architecture program at Harvard GSD.“This has been an exciting project for us to embark upon and I must commend the quality of the work, the imaginative and innovative proposals that have been presented to us and the value of the ideas and propositions that the students, under the guidance of Professor Doherty, have conceived.“This project has been about getting a fresh outside perspective on what the opportunities are for our region. We have ambitious plans for our region and despite the challenges we face, we believe that we have the confidence and resilience to allow our communities and businesses to continue to thrive and prosper.”Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Cllr. Michaela Boyle believes that the concepts and ideas presented by this project will play a vital role in informing the direction of travel for the region and that the hands-on approach taken by Harvard GSD’s students during their visit to the region earlier this year has allowed them to develop a deeper insight into the lives that are lived in the region, the challenges that are faced and most importantly the opportunities that exist.“The students engaged with, not only the terrain and policy-makers, but with our communities and with people living in our communities. “This is very much reflected in many of the proposals presented and I think these experiences have added a greater depth and understanding to the student’s ideas and concepts.“This project has been about imagining our future, it has been about looking at the potential impact of major events such as Brexit, climate change, rising sea levels and higher temperatures and what we can do to mitigate the adverse impact of these events.“This has resulted in a suite of imaginative, innovative and unique proposals that can only enrich plans for the future development of the city region.”The findings from this research will be exhibited in the North West region in Spring 2020. Innovative and imaginative ‘Atlas for a City Region’ project launched in Harvard was last modified: November 15th, 2019 by Shaun KeenanShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)
West Ham have reportedly launched an audacious bid to sign Salomon Kalou on loan.The Daily Mail say the Hammers are hopeful of agreeing a deal with Chelsea, who are said to be closing on an £8m swoop for winger Kevin de Bruyne after lodging an improved bid with Genk.The Daily Mirror say Chelsea plan to sign de Bruyne and then loan him back to Genk for the rest of the season.Zamora is a target for QPR.The Mail also say that while remaining keen on Bobby Zamora, QPR boss Mark Hughes wants the striker’s Fulham team-mate Clint Dempsey and is weighing up a move for South Africa forward Katlego Mphela, 27, of Mamelodi Sundowns.It is also claimed that Hughes wants to take R’s youth product Raheem Stirling back to Loftus Road on loan but Liverpool are not keen.Sao Paulo striker Henrique could still join QPR despite being denied a work permit, according to the South American club’s vice-president Joao Lopes.“Both parties will meet again to try to come to an agreement,” the Brazilian media quoted Lopes as saying.Anton Ferdinand plans to ignore QPR’s order to shake John Terry’s hand before Saturday’s match against Chelsea and will not acknowledge the Blues captain, according to the Mirror.Finally, The Sun claim Paris St-Germain boss Carlo Ancelotti is to sign Alex from Chelsea for £4m but will wait until the summer to raid his former club for Frank Lampard.Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebook
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Putnam County Farm Bureau Annual Meeting 2019The 2019 Putnam County Annual Meeting was held in conjunction with Putnam Soil and Water Conservation District meeting, at Whiskey Wine and Rose’s Winery in Fort Jennings, on Aug. 29, 2019.Celebrating 100 years of Ohio Farm Bureau!Dinner was catered by the delicious, Bavarian Catering, with dessert from Anna’s Cupcakes. Business meeting and voting was held following dinner. The exchange of office for president was passed from Curtis Tobe to Carl Liebrecht.TRIVIA, TRIVIA, and TRIVIA! Groups participated in trivia questions on farming and Putnam County. Winners received prizes. There also were door prizes.Rose Hartschuh gave the state trustee report and Jessica Vandenbroek, organization director, gave the County Report for 2019 and presented scholarships.Putnam County Farm Bureau looks forward to the next 100 years of Farm Bureau.
Chatbot Eugene put to Turing test wins first prize But wait another minute. What is the Loebner Prize? This is an annual competition created by businessman Hugh Loebner. The competition is an embodiment of the Turing-test affair; the chatbots try to fool the judges into assessing their answers are from humans. With reference to mathematician Alan Turing in the 1950s, the contest sets out to stage an event around Turing’s suggestion that if a computer answered questions as convincing as a human could, then the machine could reasonably be said to be thinking. The Turing Test emerged as a way to assess the intelligence of computer programs. Loebner has offered a prize of $100,000 for the computer program that meets Turing’s standard for artificial intelligence but no chatbot creator has ever achieved that level and the top-tier cash has gone unclaimed. The four finalists at the 2013 event in Northern Ireland had to undergo four rounds of questioning with the competition judges. The Mitsuku chatbot as conversationalist was declared the most convincing. Worswick told the BBC that he started programming chatbots in order to attract eyeballs to his dance music website and he created a teddy bear to do so. Visitors wanted to talk to the teddy bear more than they wanted to hear any of the music. In 2004 he was commissioned by a games company to write a chatbot and, after many conversations, the back and forths helped Worswick refine the chatbot and improve its capabilities.Interestingly, Worswick, before the September competition, reported in early August on his Mitsuku site how he was very busy working on Mitsuku getting her ready for the Loebner Prize. “The main thing I am concentrating on is to try and get rid of as many of her robotic answers as possible. Things like ‘Sorry, my eye is not attached at the moment’ or ‘I have no heart but I have a power supply’ will give her away as a program straight away…” Nonetheless, he said, “just getting to the final four is a great result and so anything else is a bonus.”That bonus came over the weekend, and on Monday, Worswick said, “Well I’ve just returned from the Loebner Prize in Derry, Northern Ireland” with some “fantastic” news. “It was a great day and a very unexpected result for me, as I was just planning on using the day to get experience of being in the final before trying for a win in 2014.” He added that Monday was a strange day for him as well; he usually has at most 500 site visitors to mitsuku.com but, on Monday he had “9,532 visitors from all corners of the globe, as well as being mentioned on various sites around the net.” Citation: Mitsuku chatbot has good answers for the Loebner Prize (2013, September 17) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-09-mitsuku-chatbot-good-loebner-prize.html Explore further (Phys.org) —A chatbot named Mitsuku has won the Loebner Prize 2013, announced over the weekend, beating out three other contestants for the top prize of a bronze medal and $4,000. Mitsuku’s creator is Steve Worswick, Mitsuku’s botmaster. But wait a minute. What is a chatbot? A chatbot is a humanlike character with conversational skills which is simulated through artificial intelligence. Eliza, back in 1964 and 1966, was the first step into programmed chatterbots, designed to simulate a conversation with one or more human users. The Eliza program was based on a human mode of interaction typified by a Rogerian therapist trained not to make any creative input to a conversation, but instead only to keep it going so that patients could explore their own feelings. “Talking to Rogerian therapist is very like talking to a brick wall with a slightly clever echo,” wrote Mike James in iProgrammer. Credit: Steve Worswick © 2013 Phys.org More information: www.mitsuku.com/ This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
And we managed to catch him for a candid chat. Here are excerpts from the interview…Tell us a bit about where you started from and your initial years in the industry?I started making my music from my early 20s in Mysore. The story of how I got into music is widely read now, but long story short, I discovered music, loved it so much that I thought it was worth it to quit my job as a scientist and jump into this full time! That was 15 years ago, and in 2011, I got the best New Comer award by Songlines magazine, so I think I am still in my early years in this industry Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’ What is ‘your kind of music’? Is there any music that you just don’t like listening to?I’ve always maintained that I think there are 2 genres of music, good music, and bad music. I strive to make as much good music as I can – there is no type of music I don’t like listening to, as long as it’s good. I don’t have any genre based dislikes, though my preference is for folk and world music. How do you think the music scene in India has changed over the last decade? Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixImmensely! from being mostly a hobby for everyone involved, today, we have a festival almost every weekend in India and bands that are of such varied genres and musical styles. I think we have come a long way in the last decade and the next decade will make Indie music huge in India. Are there trends that are coming up now that you can foresee as the next best thing in music?I don’t know if going by trends is such a great idea. I know that a whole lot of people are experimenting with music and technology, and there will be a lot of hits and misses. Do you have a dream project in mind?I am working on a couple of dream projects at the moment and they will be announced soon.