The staff of the International Marketing Council, the custodian of Brand South Africa, get into the Bafana-crazy, Diski Dancing spirit of Football Fridays!Looking good at the Johannesburg office of Brand South Africa. (Photo: Brand South Africa)And with a move to the left …! (Photo: Brand South Africa) View the full photoset on FlickrShare your own Football Friday thoughts, photos and videos Posted on SouthAfrica.info on 14 September 2009.
Marching troops, bagpipes, lots of hard work in preparations, and high fashion on the red carpet: view a gallery of images from the opening of parliament and State of the Nation Address in Cape Town on 13 February 2014. All photos courtesy GCIS.Read more:Watch the State of the Nation AddressState of the Nation Address 2014: the full textBehind the scenes: State of the Nation Address 2014 On the red carpet: Mandla Mandela, the grandson of Nelson Mandela, in traditional Xhosa dress. At a lunch for special guests invited to attend the State of the Nation Address, President Jacob Zuma helps Rebecca Kotane, wife of late ANC leader Moses Kotane, cut the cake celebrating her 102nd birthday. Workers making final preparations for the ceremony. A worker making final preparations for the ceremony. On the red carpet: Thapelo Chilwani. At a lunch for special guests invited to attend the State of the Nation Address, President Jacob Zuma congratulates Joseph Shabalala, leader of Ladysmith Black Mambazo, on the group winning, in January 2014, their fourth Grammy award. On the red carpet: Speaker of parliament Max Sisulu, Jacob Zuma’s wife Tobeka Zuma, and Mninwa Mahlangu, chair of the National Council of Provinces. South African President Jacob Zuma delivering his State of the Nation Address in parliament on 13 February 2014. On the red carpet: Rachel Tambo. On the red carpet: Rachel and Dali Tambo, the son of late African National Congress leader Oliver Tambo. South African National Defence Force troops rehearse for the ceremony. On the red carpet: Public Protector Thuli Madonsela. On the red carpet: Minister of Public Enterprises Malusi Gigaba. Rehearsals for the opening of parliament. On the red carpet: South African statistician-general Pali Lehohla. Rehearsals for the aerial flyby by the South African Airforce. On the red carpet: Khensani Kubayi and Nomalungelo Gina. On the red carpet: Faith Bikani. On the red carpet: Belinda Ngaju and Nomsa Ndaba. South African National Defence Force troops rehearse for the opening of parliament. South African National Defence Force troops rehearse for the opening of parliament on the morning of 13 February. Preparations underway for the opening of parliament and State of the Nation Address. Preparations underway for the opening of parliament and State of the Nation Address. Laying the red carpet.Gallery compiled by Mary Alexander
1Drag your footage to a new composition. 8Click play and the mask should stick to your subject. You can change the mask path and re-track if it begins to wander too much. In this video tutorial we share a trick for blurring out faces using Adobe After Effects.Whether you are trying to protect your subjects identity or don’t have permission to use someones face, this tutorial will help us learn how to blur out faces just like they do on TV.It’s a really easy concept but it requires a using a few newer tools in After Effects. The video covers:Using the mask trackerUsing the mosaic effectDifferent methods of creating anonymity.Even if you aren’t trying to blur out a face, using the mask tracker can be really useful for tracking any effect over your video.Curious how to create the same ‘blurred face’ effect in Premiere Pro? See our previous tutorial here.Don’t want to watch the video? Follow along with the step-by-step tutorial below. Click any image for larger view. 2Add an adjustment layer with the mosaic effect and a slider control. 4Apply a mask to the adjustment layer. 5Feather out the mask. 6Click track mask from the mask parameters. 3Parent the horizontal and vertical pixels value to the value of the slider. Multiply the horizontal value by 16 and the vertical by 9. 7Set the method to position, scale and rotation. Know of any other uses for the mask tracking feature in After Effects? Share in the comments below.
In the wake of the controversy over the arrest of 10 persons who shouted ‘Jai Shri Ram’ near the convoy of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, the Trinamool chief on Sunday clarified that she had no problems with slogans, but had issues with the BJP’s design to mix “religion with politics”.Ms. Banerjee had sharply reacted twice over the week when a group of men shouted Jai Sri Ram standing close to her vehicle. On both occasions, Ms. Banerjee came out of the vehicle and warned the crowd shouting at her, for which the BJP leaders had severely criticised her.Ms. Banerjee said on social media that she had “no problem regarding any particular slogan” used by parties. “My party has Jai Hind, Vande Mataram [as slogans]. The Left has Inquilab Zindabad. Others have different slogans. We respect each other,” she said.However, “the BJP is using religious slogan Jai Sri Ram as their party’s slogan in a misconceived manner by mixing religion with politics,” she said. She further indicated that action would be initiated if such religious slogans were used to stir “unrest, chaos, violence” and disrupt normal life.
MOST READ CPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPA Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion Mocon fired 14 points, 14 rebounds, and seven assists to help the Red Lions’ cause, but he’s especially glad with how his other teammates stepped up despite the loss.“On the bright side, we had lots of players who stepped up for us,” he said, giving special mentions to Donald Tankoua, Clint Doliguez, and Franz Abuda.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutTankoua fired a career-best 34 points, 13 rebounds, two assists, and two blocks, Doliguez had 13 markers and five boards, while Abuda got eight points and six rebounds as all three saw significant minutes in the clutch.Despite losing the twice-to-beat advantage as they figure in the stepladder semis, the Red Lions are using the setback as a fuel to make it to the Finals and meet the Pirates again. Read Next View comments San Beda, Lyceum early favorites ahead of NCAA Season 93 PLAY LIST 02:12San Beda, Lyceum early favorites ahead of NCAA Season 9302:25PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd02:46Makabayan bloc: Duterte suspension order on rice importation only a ‘media stunt’01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa LATEST STORIES Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netJavee Mocon is sticking to the positives in the aftermath of San Beda’s 107-105 double overtime defeat to Lyceum on Thursday.“We’ve proven that we could win against them. We had so many chances but we also had so many turnovers and we just couldn’t grab the opportunity,” he said.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohort Kin of Misamis Oriental hero cop to get death benefits, award — PNP Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Westbrook has triple-double, new-look Thunder rout Knicks Japan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101 Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH “Every time we lose, we’re so sad in our locker room. We rarely lose and that’s the reason we feel bad. We’re just going to improve and get back to work especially on our defense. We follow the game plan of coach Boyet regardless of who out opponent is,” he said. “Everybody wants to get back on track and everybody now has the motivation to beat LPU.” For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity.
zoom Recent developments in the crude tanker market, such as the delay in the IMO Ballast Water Management Convention and the OPEC meeting on Monday, are expected to add downwards pressure to the ailing sector.The OPEC meeting at St Petersburg on Monday, Saudi Arabia declared that they would cap crude oil exports at 6.6 mm/d in August, marking a six-year low, Ocean Freight Exchange (OFE) said citing JODI data.The effect of the drop in exports is already being felt in the VLCC market as charterers start covering the August program, with meagre fixing activity seen so far. Charterers seem to be withholding cargoes in an attempt to further pressure rates downwards, which have been languishing around w50 for an AG/Japan voyage, OFE said.While Nigeria was previously exempt from the production cuts, they voluntarily agreed to limit or even cut their output from 1.8 mmb/d.The market is currently facing a perfect storm of tonnage overcapacity, low demolitions, OPEC oil output cuts as well as seasonal summer lull in demand.As reported by Reuters, Nigeria’s crude production has been averaging 1.7 mmb/d recently. While the bulk of Nigerian crude exports are loaded on Suezmaxes and VLCCs, the production cap “may not have much impact on the tanker market as volumes often fluctuate due to unplanned outages.”“Assuming the Saudis continue their strategy of cutting medium/heavy crude production, refiners in Asia are expected to continue importing crudes of similar grades from the US and Latin America to meet demand,” OFE said.
The Democratic National Convention hosted a who’s-who of prominent Democratic figures. Thursday I met with former U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner, who represented New York’s 9th congressional district from 1999 through 2011 and recently ran for mayor of New York. Weiner is a lifelong hockey fan and currently plays goalie for a recreational league team, so we talked about the state of hockey analytics, the Subban-Weber trade, and what he’s been watching this offseason.Walt Hickey: How long have you been a hockey fan?Anthony Weiner: My first good memories of being a hockey fan [were when] I started following the Islanders when they came into the league. It was probably like the mid-1970s I was old enough to get into sports. I’m not like a lot of your readers. I’m not someone who can tell you the 1984 Pittsburgh Penguins lineup, but, yeah.WH: What do you make of the offseason so far?AW: The Las Vegas expansion is interesting to me. I want to see if that’s going to work. I always assumed growing up that the reason you don’t expand to Las Vegas was the influence of gambling, but now that gaming is so pervasive everywhere, they’re like football; they want to get a piece of the action. I have emotional connection to teams like the Nordiques [a defunct Quebec professional team], and so it’s kind of interesting watching that. I’m obviously interested in seeing what the Islanders do.WH: You think they make the playoffs next year?AW: Oh, they’ll make the playoffs. In fairness, it was the Saturday before the season began last year where they got [Nick] Leddy and [Johnny] Boychuk, they’ve done some things late that have been pretty dramatic, so maybe they’ll do something late here. The trades that they made — not the literal trades, but the trading that they’ve done when we lost [Kyle] Okposo and [Frans] Nielsen, we lost in those trades, so I imagine they’re going to do something more. But they’ll make the playoffs. Even though that East is tough, the Rangers are much worse too.WH: What do you make of the deplorable state of advanced hockey analytics compared to other professional sports?AW: I’m one of the few people that thinks CORSI analytics, that stuff, is actually interesting to me. I think it’s additional information. In the summers we play four on four with no icing, and so my goals against average goes up in the summer maybe 10 percent. One player on the ice that’s 10 percent better than his opposite number can wreck havoc.Things that talk about possession and how many net shots are being shot as a way of understanding what’s going on, it’s helpful. I mean it’s not a substitute for watching the games. But they give you something more. These things also give you something to argue about and talk about, which is half the fun. Like when people argue about salaries, it’s not their money, but still it doesn’t make it any less of something you want to argue about and how it affects the cap, and is Bobby Bonilla still on the Mets’ payroll, stuff like that. These analytics do give us something else to argue about. Hockey by definition is harder to reduce to zeros and ones and put into a big spreadsheet than other sports are.WH: Do you think Sidney Crosby could be the greatest ever?AW: I just don’t think you can compare across eras. You look at the old film of hockey when I was growing up watching in the ’70s and ’80s. And you got these tiny goalies who had this bad equipment, so they never developed certain moves that the goalies today do all the time. There’s a reason why goalies didn’t do a slide from post to post then. They didn’t have the pads that have the protection and landing gear that allow them to do it. If Glenn Resch had that stuff? I think it’s really hard to do.The other thing is you develop tools to analyze stuff as you grow up. No one was more dominant from moment to moment as a pure goal scorer than Mike Bossy was. But it was a different kind of weird era. Wayne Gretzky was a great player that never got checked. Crosby, he’s playing in a league at a time when you’re going to get checked. So I don’t know how you do it is my way of not answering that question.WH: Who do you think the best goalie in the league is right now?AW: There’s different kind of styles. [Carey] Price, I think, if he comes back and he’s healthy, is just a great tactical goalie, almost flawless. He competes on every shot.By the way, I wrote about this for Business Insider. I wrote a column for them. The Kings were playing the Rangers in the Stanley Cup, and I was living a block away from the Garden, and I was like, “I’ll cover the Stanley Cup for you. You don’t have to pay me a dime.” Plus, I was going to the West Coast for one of the games, so I figured I’d get press credentials or something. I’d go to the games. No dice! So I’m stuck writing these effing columns.So I did this one column about how [Henrik] Lundqvist and [Jonathan] Quick were the most highly evolved goalies of their different styles — Lundqvist being the positional blocking goalie, Quick being the low-to-the-ice reacting goalie. A lot of folks think Quick is overrated, and he had a rough playoffs; I still think physically he’s amazing. To be that low to the ice and that powerful from side to side, that’s superhuman the stuff he does. But Lundqvist, his ability to play so deep in the crease and be so large, and have his angles so perfectly that he never seems to be out of position, you’ve got to give it to him.You basically only get beaten in the modern NHL on deflections and screens, and one goalie, Quick, is as fast at responding and seeing through a screen as anyone else, and the other goalie has just found ways to be positionally really deep so that extra split second he’s in a position that stops. In the evolution of goalies, those are the two highest evolved goalies I’ve seen.WH: What did you make of the continued reluctance to extend the Zadroga Act1The James L. Zadroga 9/11 Health & Compensation Act was a signature achievement for Weiner in Congress, but last year a campaign to extend the benefits to 9/11 first responders was met with substantial resistance from some members of Congress. from some parts of Congress?AW: To some degree it’s a reflection of what’s gone wrong in the days since I went to Washington in the ’80s as a staffer, got elected in 1998, and to when I left, in that there was a merit argument that you can make on things that transcended. Not always. Sometimes there were philosophical problems. But now there’s not. If it’s a Democratic thing, the Republicans don’t want to do it by and large, and if it’s a Republican thing, the Democrats don’t want to do it by and large. Much more the former than the latter in my view. And there’s no better example in the modern times than the Zadroga Act. No one can make a merit argument against it. It was basically, “We don’t want to do it because we don’t want to give you guys any new government program without respect to how good it is or whether it’s been vetted or whatever.” WH: Wrapping it up, who’s your sleeper pick to win the cup this year?AW: I still think the Predators are due to break through.WH: Because of the trade? [Montreal traded P.K. Subban to the Predators in exchange for Shea Weber in June.]AW: They won that trade.WH: They won it?AW: No doubt about it. [Subban]’s basically two years younger, much more of an impact kind of a guy. It was basically they were getting rid of his attitude problem or whatever the hell they had. So the Predators have always been — I always get burned on the Predators. I picked them to go far. They had a weird year this year. Their goaltending was off the first quarter, third of the year. I think Pekka Rinne is one of my favorite goalies. I think he’s amazing. But I don’t know. The East is super strong. The East is very strong.
How do you think the decathlon and heptathlon are scored?Take a moment. OK, do you have your answer? It’s probably wrong. It also probably makes at least as much sense as — and possibly a good deal more than — the method used by modern track and field.Decathlon, which at the Olympics is a men’s event, is composed of 10 events: the 100 meters, long jump, shot put, high jump, 400 meters, 110-meter hurdles, discus throw, pole vault, javelin throw and 1,500 meters. Heptathlon, a women’s event at the Olympics, has seven events: the 100-meter hurdles, high jump, shot put, 200 meters, long jump, javelin throw and 800 meters.To tally these diverse events, which are measured in seconds, meters and centimeters, into a single overall score, the metrics for each event are fed into a series of equations. However, any scoring system for a multidiscipline competition will by definition have value judgments baked into it. In the case of the decathlon and heptathlon, that has resulted in decades of undervaluing throwing while overvaluing short-distance running, which in turn has resulted in top decathletes and heptathletes all converging around a certain kind of skill set and physique. It doesn’t have to be that way.As it stands, each event’s equation has three unique constants — AA, BB and CC 1Here are tables showing those constants for each event in the decathlon and heptathlon. (Opens PDF.)— to go along with individual performance, PP. For running events, in which competitors are aiming for lower times, this equation is: A⋅(B–P)CA⋅(B–P)C, where PP is measured in seconds. For field events, in which competitors are aiming for greater distances or heights, the formula is flipped in the middle: A⋅(P–B)CA⋅(P–B)C, where PP is measured in meters for throwing events and centimeters for jumping and pole vault.BB is effectively a baseline threshold at which an athlete begins scoring positive points. For performances worse than that threshold, an athlete receives zero points. 2Strictly adhering to the formulas, athletes who don’t meet the threshold technically score a set of complex numbers with an imaginary component.The AA, BB and CC constants vary by event and by gender. All events have a CC parameter (the exponent) between 1 and 2, making the scoring system progressive. In track and field, that means that as an athlete performs better, he or she is rewarded increasingly generously. A progressive system thus especially rewards standout performances rather than a consistently good performance across events.For example, the 100 meters formula for points is 25.4347⋅(18–time)1.8125.4347⋅(18–time)1.81. A 0.75-second improvement from 11.50 to 10.75 would yield 165 additional points. However, another 0.75-second improvement from 10.75 to 10.00 seconds would yield 179 additional points.This scoring philosophy wasn’t always in place. Early systems in the late 19th century merely ranked competitors in each event and summed those ranks. The first points-based system based on magnitude of results rather than relative rank came from the U.S. in 1884, but continued to award points on a linear scale — making a one-second improvement on a slow time as valuable as the same gain on a world record. Next came a Finnish table introduced in 1931 and formally adopted by the International Association of Athletics Federations in 1934, which acknowledged that performance is increasingly difficult to improve at higher levels because of natural limits of the body, and further improvements at those extremes should be rewarded more.The first IAAF international women’s tables arrived in 1954, for which officials used principles of physics to devise the formulas. Unfortunately, the science was bunk, because it falsely assumed that velocity, rather than kinetic energy — which is proportional to the square of velocity — was the output of human work. This velocity-based system heavily discounted throwing events, which awarded points at a decreasing rate with higher performance. Points effectively stalled out after throwing a certain distance. Those calculations were soon adopted for men and remained in practice until 1984, when mounting pressure about the system’s lack of incentive to further improve throwing performance beyond a certain point pushed through reform.3In addition, a new high jump form and better technology in vaulting poles threw off many of the table’s underlying premises.The 1984 tables used the principle that the world record performances of each event at the time should have roughly equal scores but haven’t been updated since. Because world records for different events progress at different rates, today these targets for WR performances significantly differ between events. For example, Jürgen Schult’s 1986 discus throw of 74.08 meters would today score the most decathlon points, at 1,384, while Usain Bolt’s 100-meter world record of 9.58 seconds would notch “just” 1,203 points. For women, Natalya Lisovskaya’s 22.63 shot put world record in 1987 would tally the most heptathlon points, at 1,379, while Jarmila Kratochvílová’s 1983 WR in the 800 meters still anchors the lowest WR points, at 1,224.The 1984 change also made all parameters progressive, and targets of 8,500 and 6,500 were set for top overall scores for the men and women respectively.4At the 1984 Olympics, still contested under the old scoring system, the U.K.’s Daley Thompson missed breaking the decathlon world record by a single point. After the IAAF’s formal adoption of the new rules, though, his score increased enough to retroactively break the world record, breaking his tie with West German Jürgen Hingsen, a tie Thompson had also retroactively earned after an IAAF investigation revealed Thompson had been mistimed in the 110-meter hurdles as one one-hundredth of a second slower than his actual time.After decades of tumultuous modification in decathlon and heptathlon scoring, the tables set in 1984 are still in place. However, standout performances still earn more in certain events than they do in others: The system has a clear bias toward short-distance running events. This is in large part due to these running events having C (exponent) parameters all north of 1.8, significantly higher than throwing ones, which are between 1.0 and 1.1. It’s no surprise, then, that those who excel at decathlon/heptathlon specialize in sprinting, and their performances in those events closely mirror those of the specialists competing in the same individual events detached from the decathlon.The average top 10 decathlete/heptathlete generalist in running events performs at something around 90 percent of the average medal-winning specialists. However, in throwing events, the generalists’ distances are only roughly 70 percent of the average medal-winning specialists’.One might assume from these charts that top decathlete/heptathletes are uniformly tall, lean speed machines rather than brawny powerhouses that can hurl an object far distances, but the data suggests otherwise.The correlation between BMI (body mass index) and overall points for men and women is indeed negative, but only -0.060 and -0.109, respectively.Anecdotal evidence also doesn’t align with the notion that there’s a tradeoff between throwing strength and skill in other events: The winner of the competition has often been the best shot-putter in the field. But athletes are well aware of the minutiae and incentives of the scoring system before competing and train their bodies in such a way as to maximize points according to that system long before they hit the track. Thus, it’s likely that some stronger, heavier athletes simply decided before the competition either to slim down or not to compete.There are strong positive correlations between better performance in each of the short-distance running events and long jump5The correlations between the long jump and running events are technically negative, but running events aim for lower numbers– as in times — so in this sense, I’m calling them “positive.” (all of which heavily rely on flat-out sprinting speed). There’s also positive correlation between the shot put and discus throw (though the other throwing event, javelin, has little correlation with those two). All other events have only small correlations between them.Comparing which events correlate best to overall points, the men are highly correlated with long jump (0.74), while shot put, pole vault, discus throw and 1,500 meters each have correlations less than 0.50. For women, long jump (0.72) also correlates best with overall points, while javelin throw only correlates at 0.30. These findings corroborate research that shows that in the heptathlon, performance in speed events is overwhelmingly the biggest determinant in predicting overall success, dwarfing the importance of the strength and endurance events.After 30-plus years of scoring table peace, is there still room for reform?We don’t lack for options. John Barrow, a professor of mathematical sciences in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at the University of Cambridge, has proposed a physics-based system akin to the flawed 1954 model, but this time getting the science correct by using proportions based on kinetic energy. Another method, proposed by Wim Westera, a professor of digital media at the Open University of the Netherlands with a background in physics and math, attempts to construct a points model based on the frequency of performances. Also, researchers at Saarland University and the University of Kaiserslautern suggest a system based on standard deviations.Perhaps another way to tweak the system would be to award outlier performances even more generously. Such a system might diversify competitor body types by creating different “paths” one could take to decathlon/heptathlon glory. As of now, most competitors earn roughly 700-1,000 points per event across the board. But a highly progressive system would create larger disparities in where an athlete derives his or her points. Faster athletes would focus on the running cluster of events and rack up the majority of their points there, while stronger athletes could aim to take the throwing path to gold.Of course, none of these alternative scoring systems tackle the largest factor determining scores: the events themselves. The fact that the sprinting events and long jump so well correlate with each other puts a large premium on athletes who can reach top speeds.Another way of adjusting for this imbalance is possibly removing a speed-based event from the decathlon to make the enneathlon. Or adding another strength-focused event (e.g., hammer throw) to form the hendecathlon. Women could go down to the hexathlon or up to the octathlon. These charts unambiguously show where an athlete gets the best point return on performance, short-distance running, and it’s clear they’re investing their training accordingly.
Cardiff City Under-18 coach Craig Bellamy has temporarily vacated his role, amid an investigation into claims he bullied a young playerThe 39-year-old is investigated by Cardiff over a complaint made by the boy’s parents over his treatment towards their son.First-team manager Neil Warnock confirmed that an investigation will be conducted with Bellamy now releasing a statement in response to the charges.“I am aware of allegations that have been made against me via the media,” read Bellamy’s statement on BBC.AAIB responds to Sala’s family request to recover the plane’s wreckage Manuel R. Medina – August 14, 2019 The Air Accidents Investigation Branch says they already explained their decision not to recover the plane’s wreckage to Sala’s family and the pilot’s.“I understand the need for Cardiff City to undertake a full investigation in response to these allegations and – at my own suggestion – I have temporarily removed myself from my coaching position in order to cooperate fully with the club’s inquiry.“Obviously, I am saddened both by the allegations and the manner in which they were made.”Bellamy formerly played as a striker in the Premier League for Cardiff, along with the likes of Liverpool and Manchester City.In the English top-flight division, Bellamy scored 81 goals in 294 appearances and found the net 19 times in 78 outings for Wales at international level before hanging up his boots in 2014.