first_imgNovelist Michael Collins, member of the Notre Dame class of 1987, read excerpts from his most recent novel, “The Death of All Things Seen,” on Wednesday in the Hammes Notre Dame Bookstore.As an undergraduate, Collins was a varsity track athlete at Notre Dame on scholarship from Limerick, Ireland, majoring in English and business.“I came as an athlete and only survived two years at Notre Dame on scholarship, and I was allowed by the benevolence of [University President Emeritus] Fr. [Theodore] Hesburgh to stay without finishing my running career,” Collins said. “What he did say was, ‘If you’re going to stay on here, do something, don’t be a quitter. You’re not leaving the team because you’re a failure.’ And I said ‘No, I want to become educated. I want to do something else.’”That “something else” was first programming software — a skill he taught himself — at Microsoft under Bill Gates, and then later becoming a successful novelist whose works have been translated into 17 languages.William O’Rourke, professor emeritus and founder of the Notre Dame Creative Writing graduate program, said Collins was the reason he founded the program.“Michael was one of the most extraordinary students I’ve ever encountered, and it wasn’t just because he had over-the-horizon genius in writing,” O’Rourke said. “He has this ability of prose which very few people have, he’s a long distance runner world class and he also worked with Bill Gates at Microsoft.“He traverses three cultures.”One of Collins’ early novels, “The Keepers of Truth,” which is set in a town that closely resembles South Bend, was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the IMPAC Award. The book led to both his recognition in the literary world and his firing from Microsoft, because they were unaware of his writing career, O’Rourke said.Since then, Collins has written 10 novels in total, all part of an American series that “lament the passing of American greatness,” Collins said.Collins read from his most recent novel, “The Death of All Things Seen”, which is the last in the series.“[The Death of All Things Seen is] a Chicago novel. It’s both sociological, realistic and philosophical — a genre that’s very popular these days,” O’Rourke said.Collins attributed his recent success to the current political climate surrounding the election of President Donald Trump.“When I started writing, it was to understand my own country, to process all that I had left behind in Ireland — again in 1983, Catholics versus Protestants and the whole in Ireland, you got to America and you never wanted to go home.” Collins said. “Writing is about psychotherapy for me. Perhaps it takes a point of dislocation to better receive the past or understand it. It would not be until I became an engineer for Microsoft in the mid ’90s that I would begin to reflect on our collective future.”“The Death of All Things Seen” begins in 2008 in the wake of the economic crisis and the election of then-President Barack Obama. The novel “moves around the central idea that there is no single narrative anymore — that each life simply occupies the same moment, that one’s perception and understanding of the world is never the same to any one person,” Collins said. “This is a world of fracture.”Collins, who is an ultra runner in addition to novelist and is captain of the Irish National 100k team, says that distance running and writing overlap in the areas of self-deprivation and discipline.“Every book takes about three months to write. You spend a lot of time preparing for a book and then you have to find a three-month space to do it. Writing a book is not difficult when you decide to do it,” Collins said. “I do 100-mile races, people think three months is long, but 100 miles is long too. If you prepare for it … you say on that particular day, ‘I’m going to do it,’ to the detriment of everything else in your life.”Collins then offered some advice to aspiring novelists.“Compress everything into a short period of time. If you give yourself too much time to do something, you give yourself an out.”Tags: creative writing, Ireland, Michael Collins, rev. theodore hesburgh, The Death of All Things Seen, Tracklast_img read more

first_imgThe Accra Sports Stadium has been cleared to host the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier between Ghana and Malawi billed for Saturday, September 8, 2012.The national stadium, yet to taste any significant action since its renovation for the 2008 Africa Cup of Nations was reportedly tagged unsafe to host matches by Kojo Bonsu, Board Chairman of the National Sports Authority (NSA) in a recent interview on JOY Sports Link, but experts have allayed the disturbing concerns raised by the Chairman.With visible signs of rust and cracks spotted on the roof and other vital sections of the facility, Eric Ansah, Deputy Managing Director of the Architectural and Engineering Services Limited (AESL) insists the venue is safe to host this weekend’s match and subsequent ones.Ansah who led a team of technical experts from his outfit and officials of the NSA on an inspection tour of the stadium on Monday, which was re-inaugurated by former President John Agyekum Kufour in October 2007, said it cannot serve as a ‘death trap’ as being speculated. “We want to allay any fears about the safety of the stadium. It is fit to host matches. Therefore, the Ghana/Malawi match can be held here,” Ansah assured.He worryingly admitted that the signs of rust was a concern, but explained there was no cause for alarm since “it has not gotten to the skills structure. The rust is due to the sea breeze as the stadium is close to the sea.“We have to do some steel blasting and re-painting of the whole structure. There is nothing to worry about,” he affirmed. Ansah advised that the best practice would have been regular maintenance to keep the facility in the best of shapes.The 40,000-capacity stadium built in the 1960’s hosted the final matches of the 1978 and 2008 Africa Cup of Nations.It was renovated alongside the Baba Yara Stadium in Kumasi for the 2008 Africa Cup of Nations which was complemented by the Tamale and Essipong Stadia, Sekondi.last_img read more

first_imgMobile BlindersEradicating boredom and banishing downtime has its upside, of course. In a recent Bloomberg report, major advertisers, including Coca-Cola and Hearst, expressed their concern over lowered “impulse” sales at the grocery store checkout aisles. This is not at all surprising. Staring into their smartphones, with their “mobile blinders” on, people are less inclined to buy gum, candy or those trashy magazines.“For years, publishers could count on bored shoppers waiting in the checkout line to pick up a magazine, get engrossed in an article, and toss it into their cart alongside the milk and eggs. Then came ‘mobile blinders.’ These days, consumers are more likely to send a quick text and check their Facebook feed than to read a magazine or develop a momentary craving for the gum or candy on display.” Awesome. Score one for the smartphone!But this victory comes at a cost. Spending so much time texting and updating, tweeting and watching, calling and playing at every free moment, from every location, never alone with our thoughts, never allowing our thoughts to drift, impacts our creativity, which in turn can limit our full potential.Edward de Bono, business consultant and self-described “father of lateral thinking” has authored numerous works on creative thinking. de Bono calls moments of boredom “creative pauses,” which allows the mind to drift, and avails the person to new forms of input and understanding. Boredom may be even more important for children than adults. Spending so much time on gadgets may “short circuit the development of creative capacity” in children, according to educational expert Dr. Teresa Belton. Other education experts similarly suggest that a child’s imagination and creativity is ultimately aided through bouts of boredom.Earlier this year, Science Omega examined the benefits of boredom.“Psychologists from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) have conducted research into the potential upsides of boredom and found that the time we spend daydreaming could improve our creative ability.”The lead researcher on the UCLan study, Dr. Sandi Mann, emphasized boredom’s role in society:“I do strongly believe that we shouldn’t be afraid of boredom and that we all – adults, children, workers, non-workers – need a little bit of boredom in our lives. Of course I’m not saying we should make people attend boring meetings for the sake of it, but allowing staff downtime where they can daydream and let their minds wander could possibly lead to benefits for an organisation.”Short-term GainThere is the possibility, of course, that by killing our boredom smartphones are freeing up time for better, more productive or uplifting pursuits. For example, psychology professor Gary Marcus distinguishes between the two primary types of pursuits we use to defeat boredom.“Boredom is the brain’s way to tell you you should be doing something else. But the brain doesn’t always know the most appropriate thing to do. If you’re bored and use that energy to play guitar and cook, it will make you happy. But if you watch TV, it may make you happy in the short term, but not in the long term.”So much of what we do on our smartphones, however, is decidedly short-term: a few moments playing a game while we stand in line, a minute to scan Instagram as the person in front of us at the grocery store pulls out their checkbook. A study last year by UK carrier O2 examined the amount of time the typical user spends each day on their smartphone. It’s a lot – more than two hours a day, everyday. Most of that is spent browsing the Internet, on social networking sites, playing games, listening to music, calling, emailing and texting – and not, for example, learning a new language.  No Off SwitchAt work, employees are often encouraged to ‘think outside the box.’ The assumption is that such thinking will lead to creativity, innovation, and newer, better solutions to existing or expected problems. Spending so much time with our heads focused inside the box – staring at our smartphone – may mean, however, that we are ultimately limiting our creativity. There is no time freed up to see the larger picture, to make connections where they previously never existed, to allow our brains rest, to see and hear and accept alternatives. Though I confess I hope I am wrong about all of this.I spend far more time than the average user with my eyes staring into that small, bright and highly receptive screen. I am not sure I am able to shut it off, even now. Image courtesy of Shutterstock. What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Related Posts The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement brian s hall I love my iPhone. I take it with me everywhere. But I am starting to fear it may be killing my creativity. Numerous studies and much accepted wisdom suggest that time spent doing nothing, being bored, is beneficial for sparking and sustaining creativity. With our iPhone in hand – or any smartphone, really – our minds, always engaged, always fixed on that tiny screen, may simply never get bored. And our creativity suffers.Peter Toohey, author of Boredom: A Lively History, told the New York Times that boredom is the experience of “wanting to, but being unable to engage in satisfying activity.” No wonder those of us with smartphones are able to avoid boredom so easily. We can always engage in some satisfying activity, no matter how trivial – snap a picture of our meal, play a quick game of Angry Birds, check-in on Foursquare or leave a tip. We may be helpless, despite knowing the deleterious effects of these devices. Consider that Apple’s latest marketing campaign perfectly captures the breadth of functions and fun the iPhone readily delivers to its millions of users. There is so much anyone can do with this magical device, so simply, so quickly, from any place, at any time. The problem is that this may not be a good thing. At least, not always.   Tags:#Apple#iPhone Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaceslast_img read more

first_img Related Items: Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppTURKS AND CAICOS ISLANDS, NOVEMBER 18, 2013- The government seems to be making a tremendous effort in fighting money-laundering in the Turks and Caicos Islands. In addition, to a recently held anti-money laundering training at Beaches Resort and Spa, the government is now hoping to pump funds into the area in an effort to minimize money-laundering activities in the TCI. At last Cabinet sitting, the country’s leaders advised the governor to approve monies amounting to more than $120,000 to improve the ability of the relevant authorities to detect money laundering, among beneficiaries of the fund are the Marine branch of the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force and the Financial Crimes Intelligence Unit. Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApplast_img read more

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp#Bahamas, August 31, 2017 – Nassau – The Minister of Labour, Senator the Hon. Dion Foulkes along with members of the newly-appointed Price Commission have vowed to protect the rights  of consumers throughout The Bahamas. Members of the Price Commission convened their first board meeting recently at the Ministry of Labour.Minister Foulkes was joined by Synida Dorsett, Chairperson of the Price Commission; Earl Godet, Deputy Chairman; Freddie Munnings, Member; Eulamae Gordon, Chief Price Inspector & Consumer Welfare Unit; and Morgan Graham, Assistant Director of Labour.“We have a very seasoned and experienced board,” stated Minister Foulkes.   “We have Mrs. Synida Dorsett as Chairperson, who was once a Supervisor at the Consumer Unit and she also served as Secretary General of the Bahamas Public Service Union (BPSU) and the Deputy Chair, Mr. Earl Godet, a Businessman from Grand Bahama.   I am very happy that both of them, along with the other board members, some who hail from the Family Islands have accepted the appointment.”Minister Foulkes said there are some serious issues concerning consumer affairs in the country and that the Price Commission and the Consumer Protection Commission must readily address them.    Among these concerns he noted were the newly introduced charges by some banks on various banking transactions along with other vexing consumer issues.The Labour Minister said that he would like to see some synergy between all three of the consumer groups which fall under his portfolio so that they can be more effective.   In addition to the Price Commission, these groups include the Consumer Protection Commission and the Bahamas Bureau of Standards and Quality Services.Press Release: BISPictured L–R: Shavonne Symonette, Administration Officer Ministry of Labour; Fred Munnings, Price Commission Member; Earl Godet, Deputy Chairman, Price Commission; Minister Foulkes; Synida Dorsett, Chairman of the Price Commission; Eulamae Gordon, Chief Price Inspector & Consumer Welfare Representative and Morgan Graham, Assistant Director of Labour, Ministry of Labour.   Board members missing are: Belinda Wilson, Dennis Williams, and Huel Robins.(Photo/Courtesy MOL) Related Items:last_img read more

first_imgProfessor Shamnad BasheerTwitter Intellectual Property Law specialist Shamnad Basheer passed away in a freak car accident in Chikkamagaluru district of Karnataka. The 43-year-old scholar, who was the founder of Increasing Diversity by Increasing Access (IDIA, was missing for the past four days after he had gone to Baba Budan Giri from Bengaluru for a health check-up on July 28. Shamnad was scheduled to return to Bangalore on Monday (August 5) but remained untraceable. His family members filed a missing complaint on Wednesday. The search party, along with the local police, was unable to locate his car initially due to heavy rains and thick fog in the area but later found it parked away from the road.Although an investigation into the incident is underway and the cause of death is yet to be ascertained, the Superintendent of Police of Chikkamagaluru, Harish Pandey, told The Hindu, “It seems like he slept in the car, switching on the heater. Inhaling too much of carbon monoxide could be the reason for his death. There are chances of a short-circuit too.”The post mortem will be conducted on Friday and his mortal remains will be taken to Kerala for the last rites. “We are waiting for the post-mortem to be done to obtain clarity on the death. Foul play is being ruled out because the car was locked from the inside and the key was in the ignition,” said Pandey. Professor Shamnad opened a new portal and paved the way for the production of cancer drugs at minimal cost in India. The legal scholar also argued that India has the potential to produce medicines for diseases, including leukaemia, without the application of global patent law.In a landmark battle with the Swiss drugmaker Novartis in 2012, Shamnad had argued before a two-judge bench of the Supreme Court that the company was trying to sell Glivec, a cancer cure medicine at a distinct twentyfold markup. The medicine is sold by the generic drug makers in India at a very low price and Novartis had tried for a patent over Glivec, which was rejected after which it approached the apex court.Shamnad, who is from Kerala’s Kollam, completed his graduation from National Law School of India University, Bangalore, and did his post-graduation from the University of Oxford. He was also the Frank H Marks Visiting Associate Professor of Intellectual Property Law at the George Washington University law school in Washington DC.He started his career with an intellectual property law firm in Delhi, Anand and Anand. He founded IDIA in 2010 with a vision to help the students from rural and disadvantaged backgrounds to crack law entrance exams and provide them with quality education.In 2008, he joined the National University of Juridical Sciences (NUJS), Kolkata, as the first Ministry of Human Resource Development Chaired Professor in Intellectual Property law. He was awarded the Infosys Prize for Humanity in recognition of his outstanding contributions to legal issues.last_img read more

first_imgTravis Bubenik/Houston Public MediaTexas Coastal Exchange says preserving coastal marshland could be key to battling climate change.Texas pumps more carbon emissions into the atmosphere than any other state, according to the Energy Information Administration. But a tiny non-profit on the Texas Gulf Coast says private landowners could be making money off those emissions, while helping to offset them.The group says that the concept of a “market” for carbon — where carbon-producing businesses or individuals would pay landowners to preserve coastal marshes — is a promising business solution in the fight against climate change. Share Between the Green New Deal, proposals for a national “carbon tax” and so-called “clean” coal plants, there’s no shortage of ideas out there for how to curb carbon emissions. But environmental lawyer Jim Blackburn said he’s got the Texas answer. “So much of the conversation at the national level is punitive,” Blackburn said. “It’s negative about carbon, period, and it turns a lot of people in Texas and, I would say, the central United States, off.”Blackburn recently made his pitch at a coastal nature preserve near the city of Galveston, where the patchy islands of dark green marsh grass open up into a nearby bay, and the horizon is filled with vacation homes and oil refineries.Blackburn’s system, the Texas Coastal Exchange, allows businesses and people to offset their carbon emissions by paying landowners to keep marshes in their natural state.Why marshes? “They basically take carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere and put it into the root system and vegetation that you see in front of us out here in the marsh and, over time, that builds up in the soil,” Blackburn said. “That’s just what they do.”The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says there are more than 380,000 acres of saltwater marsh in Texas. According to Anna Armitage, a marine biologist at Texas A&M University at Galveston, studies have shown marshes are better at sucking up carbon on a per-area basis than forests.“People think about tropical forests as storing lots of carbon because they have huge trees, and that’s true, but they don’t have as much carbon below-ground, which is really where it’s stored for decades,” she said.Azure Bevington, a coastal ecologist working as a science consultant for the project, called the ability of coastal lands to suck carbon out of the air a “service.” “These types of wetlands don’t have an income stream. You conserve them because you want to conserve the services,” she said.Bevington says that a “marketplace” like Texas Coastal Exchange’s gives landowners a financial incentive to keep marshland natural. The plan is premised on the idea that people are willing to pay for their impact on the planet.A local sustainability-minded firm, Kirksey Architecture, was the first to buy into the exchange. “We’re in the business of developing and designing buildings. That, in and of itself, is going to create a certain, you know, carbon offput,” said Wes Good, the company’s president.Kirksey is paying a local conservation group, the Galveston Bay Foundation, about $14,000 for a year to preserve roughly 200 acres of marsh the foundation already owns. The entities estimate that offsets about a year’s worth of Kirksey’s carbon footprint. Texas Coastal Exchange gets a cut of the money, about 15 percent, for facilitating the deal.The exchange’s first carbon offset deal is informal — there’s no contract involved and the groups are working together to promote the idea. One of the architecture firm’s executives even sits on the exchange board. There is a risk that programs like these can allow a person or company to feel better about their carbon emissions, without actually trying to lower them. “You know, say a refinery just pays for an offset rather than reducing its own pollution,” said Luke Metzger, head of the advocacy group Environment Texas. “We need the markets, but we also need to make sure those major local emitters also are doing as much as they can to reduce pollution on-site.”Metzger said the exchange won’t be able to replace the many other climate solutions that scientists say are needed to reach net zero emissions by about 2050, a target that, if achieved, could avoid the worst impacts of climate change. X center_img Listen To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: 00:00 /03:26last_img read more

first_img ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15 Gateley exited A+E Networks’ Lifetime about a year ago. Prior to joining Lifetime in 2015, she was partners with Tony DiSanto in the DiGa production banner, which was behind shows including MTV’s “Teen Wolf.” (In 2014, Gateley and DiSanto sold the company to the U.K.’s ITV. Last year DiSanto and financier Matthew J. Bruderman launched Allyance Media Group, encompassing DiSanto’s production company, DiGa Studios, which had previously reacquired the equity interests in DiGa formerly held by ITV.)Before DiGa, Gateley was a programming exec at MTV where she created “Laguna Beach” and co-created and executive produced its spinoffs, “The Hills” and “The City,” and shepherded other shows for the cable net including “Jersey Shore,” “16 & Pregnant,” “Teen Mom” and “America’s Best Dance Crew.” Gateley had a previous stint at Lifetime prior joining MTV in 2003.At Spotify, Gateley is reuniting with chief content officer Dawn Ostroff, who was head of programming at Lifetime from 1996-2002, and Courtney Holt, head of studios and video (with whom Gateley worked when they were both at MTV).“I am excited to be back in the music/culture world to tell loud stories with my incredible team and to help invent new executions as I always have, but, most importantly, to join at such a transformative time at Spotify on the heels of the Gimlet and Anchor acquisitions,” Gateley wrote in the post. “I also get to work with Dawn Ostroff and Courtney Holt, both former colleagues and two of the smartest people I know.” Spotify has tapped longtime TV exec Liz Gateley, most recently head of programming at Lifetime, as head of creative development focused on original podcast content.Gateley will oversee Spotify’s original content development teams in New York and Los Angeles and the company’s expansion into podcasting including in comedy, sports, YA fiction and scripted, news/documentaries and additional music formats. She announced her new role Thursday in a post on LinkedIn.Her hiring comes after Spotify earlier this month launched a big new push into podcasting, spending almost $340 million to acquire producer Gimlet Media and services platform Anchor. The streaming-audio giant said it planned to invest up to $500 million in podcasting in 2019 (including what it paid for for Gimlet and Anchor).center_img Popular on Variety last_img read more

first_imgBy WVUA 23 Web Coordinator David Williams IIIWhile you may just expect planes at an airshow, not all the action will be in the air. At the Tuscaloosa Airshow attendees will get the chance to ride or drive in some of the fastest cars on earth.For $149, people can ride or drive either a Ferrari or Lamborghini thanks to Precision Exotic. According to the owner, Eric Nelson, both cars can reach up to 200 mph on the runway.“You’d be amazed how quick that self preservation gene kicks in when down in that quarter of a million dollar car,” said Nelson. Their wallet starts tingling, their brain starts tingling, your stomach starts churning and they’re like you know what I am going to take it a little easy.”For those attending the airshow, Precision Exotic offers a unique experience. Even though the main focus is the aircraft, these cars offer a more realistic thrill for every adrenaline junkie.“The difference, the separation between an aircraft enthusiast and a car enthusiast is about half a chromosome,” said Nelson. “You’re not going to be able to hop in the Blue Angels or the MiG-17 or the F-16 or the A-10. You’re not going to be able to hop in one of them aircraft and pilot it around the skies here and see what it feels like to rocket around in a finely tuned machine. But you can get in the cockpit of a Lamborghini or Ferrari and see what fine tuned engineering can actually do for your senses.”last_img read more