In Your Neighbourhood

first_imgMile Gully, Ricam lead Manchester Major League Following the completion of the first half of the first round, Mile Gully and Ricam are the respective zone leaders of the Magnum/Captain’s Bakery Major League. Mile Gully’s 2-0 win over Greenvale pivoted them to 13 points from five games to head Zone One ahead of defending champions Hillstars, who have 12. Mile Gully had to fight off relegation in their penultimate match last season. However, their resurgence this season has been remarkable and included the highlight of the competition so far – a 1-0 win over Hillstars in the fourth round. That win spoilt Hillstars’ unbeaten record, which dates back to the 2014 season. Ricam leads Zone Two with 13 points after five matches, which includes four wins and a draw against Alligator Pond. They completed the pre-Christmas round with a 6-0 win over Land Settlement. Christopher Dyer netted a hat-trick, the third time the feat had been achieved since the start of the competition last month. Downs are second with 12 points, having lost to Ricam. The competition takes a break until Saturday, January 2. Hillstars, Ricam to contest Manchester KO finals The first finals of the 2015-16 Manchester FA season will be contested next Tuesday when Hillstars and Ricam meet in the Brumalia Hardware-sponsored Knock-out Cup. Venue will be Brooks Park, starting at 2:45 p.m. Both teams earned the right following convincing semi-finals performances. Hillstars recorded a 3-1 win over Old England, while defending champions Porus were brushed aside 6-0 by Ricam. That result has since sent Porus in a spin, so much so that they failed to show for their fifth-round Major League fixture against Alligator Pond. Ricam are in their best form, currently unbeaten and leading Zone Two of the Major League. Hillstars are in second position in another Major League zone, but are still fancied to win the KO finals despite a recent 0-1 upset loss to Mile Gully. Henriques wins ‘Rappa Pam Pam’ Despite being noticeably injured, Mandeville’s top shooter, Orville Henriques, held off the challenge of Jamaica Rifle Association’s Lennox Moulton to win the Manchester Rifle and Pistol Club’s Christmas extravaganza dubbed ‘Rappa Pam Pam’. Henriques was not dominant, but won four of the eight stages to finish on 476 points. Moulton, who earned top-four positions on five stages, ended at 84 per cent with 400 points. Female shooter Sue Ann Henriques, who won the last two stages, was edged into third with 384 points. The next three positions were separated by four percentage points. Ellsworth Dixon, who won the practice shoot held three days earlier, was fourth, followed by Evon Grant and Owen Campbell. Clarendon KO to break until December 31 The Noel Arscott-sponsored Clarendon Knock-out football competition will take a break until next Thursday, December 31, when the second round starts. The first round ended earlier this week, and included home-and-away matches. Jamalco, as well as the parish’s Premier League team, Humble Lion, will enter at the quarter-final stage. In results from the first round, York Town exited Sandy Bay, Bamboo Lane knocked out Kemps Hill, Springfield got rid of Spartan, Rock River made it past newcomers Bulls United from Alston, while Original Hazard took care of Little Brazil of Sheckles. In the most recent results, newcomers Anderson Drive knocked out Lionel Town 1-0 after the first leg ended 0-0, while Four Parks got the better of Treadlight by a similar margin. Jamalco top Clarendon FA awards Jamalco were deemed the best team, taking both the top competition and individual awards at the recent Clarendon Football Association 2015 awards ceremony held at Wembley Excellence Centre. Jamalco got the top incentive award for being Major League champions, Knock-out champions, in which they triumphed over Premier League team Humble Lion. They were also recognised for narrowly missing the cut to the Premier League. Jamalco secured the top individual awards, including Coach of the Year, which went to Ryan Johnson. The CFA also recognised its referees. The National award went to Kevin Morrison, while the parish’s Performance award went to Doween Tummings. Jason Jackson was handed the best assistant referee. Clarendon College was adjudged the best schoolboy team, while Lennon got the award for best female team. Battle on for semi-final spot Four teams – Pro Santos A, Express All Stars, Progressive Strikers, and Passagefort Strikers – will play off for the fourth and final semi-final spot in the South East St Catherine Netball League. The play-offs starts on Saturday, January 9, and is over three days. Based on form, Pro Santos A and Express All Stars should be in the two teams that will fight for that one spot. Meanwhile, Westchester netball team topped the standings with 16 points as the preliminary round comes to a close. Mega Angels, 13 points, occupy second spot. Pro Santos B (12 points) are third. The top three are given automatic berths to the semi-final. In a recent game, Mega Angels dismissed Pro Santos B 24-11. Free Jamaica Holiday Lacrosse camp A Jamaica Holiday Lacrosse Camp will take place at St George’s College (Emmett Park) in Kingston from Monday, December 28, to Thursday, December 31, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. each day. This camp is funded and staffed by players and coaches primarily from the United States. Equipment is provided on loan from the Jamaica Lacrosse Association and given to committed campers to keep at the end of the camp. The organisers of the camp said that “the game will be taught in a positive and encouraging environment. Water and light refreshments are provided, along with music, games, prizes, contests, awards, and lots of fun.” There will be high-school and university men’s and women’s divisions at this camp, as well as a new youth boy’s division (Primary School boys ages 8-13). Mid-season final for January 3 The York Pharmacy-sponsored Portmore Division Two mid-season final has been pushed back to Sunday, January 3, 2016. The match was originally scheduled for Sunday, December 27. The match, which features Cedar Grove and Braeton United, will take place at the Cedar Grove playing field starting at 3 p.m. Meanwhile, both Cedar Grove and Braeton United were beaten in recent matches. Cedar Grove suffered a shock 2-0 loss to Cumberland (five points), which won their first match in four tries, while Cedar Grove were losing for the first time. Braeton United remained on six points from three games as they were clipped 1-0 by Edgewater. In another game, Daytona (seven points) spanked Southborough 4-2.last_img read more

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BUSINESS BRIEF Wilmingtons Ametros Announces Promotion Of Nicole Sauk To Chief Financial Officer

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Ametros has promoted Nicole Sauk to Chief Financial Officer. In addition to leading the finance and operations teams, Sauk is instrumental in new product launches, the development of Ametros’ data analytics team, regulatory and compliance initiatives, as well as systems enhancements of the fast-growing post-settlement professional administration company.This is Sauk’s fourth promotion since she joined Ametros in 2014; most recently she served as the Senior Vice President of Finance and Operations.“Nicole has done an outstanding job, constantly bringing new ideas and ways to seamlessly implement new programs and services. As Ametros continues to grow, we recognize the need for a senior leader that could help us sustain our growth, while maintaining our industry leadership,” said Marques Torbert, CEO of Ametros.Sauk shares her expertise through blog posts and articles, while speaking frequently at industry events and conferences. This past April, she participated in the panel, “The Importance of Understanding Financial Acumen,” at the National Alliance of Women in Workers’ Compensation event in Huntington Beach, California. Nicole is also an ambassador for the new Massachusetts chapter for this organization.Before joining Ametros, she served as an accounting manager for ISO Claims Partners and she previously worked in public accounting as an audit associate for Caturano and Company. Sauk, who attended the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, holds two bachelor’s degrees in English Literature and Accounting.About AmetrosAmetros is the industry leader in post-settlement medical administration and a trusted partner for thousands of members receiving funds from workers’ compensation and liability settlements. Founded in 2010, Ametros provides post-settlement medical management services with significant medical and pharmacy discounts along with automated payment technology and Medicare reporting tools. Headquartered just north of Boston in Wilmington, Massachusetts, Ametros may be reached at 877.275.7415 or via www.ametros.com.(NOTE: The above press release is from Ametros via BusinessWire.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedBUSINESS BRIEF: Wilmington’s Ametros Launches First Of Its Kind CareGuard Mobile AppIn “Business”Wilmington’s Ametros Names Porter Leslie As New PresidentIn “Business”BUSINESS BRIEF: Wilmington’s Ametros Appoints Paul Sighinolfi As Senior Managing DirectorIn “Business”last_img read more

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Rhesus monkeys found to see faces in inanimate objects too

first_imgCredit: Current Biology (2017). DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2017.06.075 A team of researchers at the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health has found that rhesus monkeys, like humans, recognize face-like traits in inanimate objects. In their study published in the journal Current Biology, the researchers describe experiments they carried out with monkeys looking at photographs and what they learned from them. More information: Jessica Taubert et al. Face Pareidolia in the Rhesus Monkey, Current Biology (2017). DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2017.06.075 Humans are notorious for seeing face-like characteristics in inanimate objects—the likeness of an old woman in a sliced tomato, Jesus in a potato chip, etc. Such recognition is known as pareidolia, and has been studied extensively in humans. But does it also happen with animals? That is what the researchers with this new effort sought to learn. They chose a relatively obvious animal for a subject, rhesus monkeys. Not only are they more human-like than most other animals, but they are also very social, which prior work with humans has suggested is very strongly tied to pareidolia.The team worked with five of the monkeys, showing them pairs of pictures on a computer screen while timing how long they looked at them. Prior research has shown that rhesus monkeys, like humans, tend to stare longer at faces than at other objects. The monkeys were shown pictures of objects that a group of humans had already approved as having face-like characteristics. They were also shown pictures of similar objects without face-like characteristics. And for comparison, they were also shown pictures of the faces of other rhesus monkeys.The researchers found that the monkeys did, indeed, fixate on those images with face-like characteristics longer than similar objects without such characteristics—and strangely, longer even than they looked at the faces of other monkeys. They also fixated on features resembling eyes and mouths. The researchers discovered this by also using a camera with face-tracking software to note where the monkeys were focusing their attention.The results of their experiments, the researchers note, suggest that rhesus monkeys do, indeed, recognize faces in objects, which makes sense, the team further notes, because face recognition for them is important for maintaining social contact in their natural environment. © 2017 Phys.org How the brain recognizes familiar facescenter_img Citation: Rhesus monkeys found to see faces in inanimate objects too (2017, August 28) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2017-08-rhesus-monkeys-inanimate.html 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. Journal information: Current Biology Explore furtherlast_img read more

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Japanese telco SoftBank has agreed to buy USbased

first_imgJapanese telco SoftBank has agreed to buy US-based DramaFever, a streaming site that offers on-demand access to Asian and Latino drama. Founded in 2009, DramaFever initially focused on offering Korean dramas with English subtitles, later branching out into telenovelas.The site now claims to offer series and films from 70 major broadcasters and studios throughout Asia, Europe and the Americas, with a mission to be “a destination for new cultural experiences through entertainment.”“This is a triumphant day for our content partners who have demonstrated that engaging stories and characters transcend languages and borders,” said DramaFever co-founder and co-CEO Suk Park.“It is also a great day for our viewers, who can continue to expect DramaFever to bring them the best series and movies from around the world. With the support of SoftBank, we will be further empowered to curate the content that our increasingly global audience of young, passionate viewers loves.”SoftBank said it has entered a definitive agreement to buy DramaFever, though terms of the deal were not disclosed.last_img read more

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HDTV is increasingly seen even within Europe as

first_imgHDTV is increasingly seen, even within Europe, as the de facto standard for pay-TV services. Andy Fry surveys recent developments.It’s been a long time coming, but HD channels have now moved into the pay-TV mainstream. While there is still a lot of variation in HD take-up from territory to territory, the last year has represented a critical phase with consumer demand for HD-ready TV sets and set top boxes growing rapidly.France is a good indicator of this trend. At the end of 2009, 45.4% of TV homes had at least one HD-ready television, up 15.3% on 2008. By 2012, consultancy NPA Conseil/Euroconsult expects that figure to rise to 78%. In the UK, meanwhile, pay-TV providers BSkyB and Virgin Media have seen revenues boosted by consumer take-up of HD services. Sky added 429,000 HD customers in the second quarter of this year, meaning that 30% of its 9.8 million-strong subscriber base now pay an extra £10 (€12) per month for HD channels. Virgin Media now has 1.2 million customers signed up to its 26 HD-channel package, contributing to a recession-beating 5% increase in its ARPU year-on-year. The US, UK and Japan, however, probably have the most advanced HD line-ups in the world, with US cable operator Comcast recently increasing its HD offering to 100 channels in parts of New Jersey (recent add-ons include Comedy Central, BET, Lifetime and MTV). But other leading economies are catching up fast. In recent months, German pay-TV provider Sky Deutschland and cable operator Kabel Deutschland have both put HD at the heart of their growth strategy. While the former has a total of 10 HD channels available via cable and satellite, the latter is poised to unveil HD versions of US-backed channels SyFy, TNT Serie and TNT Film this autumn.With Scandinavia, Benelux, Poland, Latin America and the Asia-Pacific also experiencing an HD groundswell, it’s no surprise that channel operators other than those named above are anxious to enter the space too. Today, Discovery, National Geographic, MTV, Disney, AETN International and Eurosport, to name a few, all offer HD channels alongside their existing SD portfolios. Indeed, for some of the newer arrivals on the European pay-TV scene, there’s now a temptation to drop in an HD service first and add SD afterwards.New lease of life“In some territories there’s a kind of technology arms race going on.”Ed Palluth, Rainbow MediaPresident of MGM Networks Worldwide Bruce Tuchman says his company now has six HD services in the international market. And he’s convinced it’s the way of the future: “We’ve seen from the US market that once consumers experience HD they don’t go back. The issue until now has been getting the pricing and the content right, but in markets where consumers have 50-60 HD channels they’re increasingly happy to stay within that universe and not watch SD at all.” For MGM, the advent of HD has been a new lease of life: “Our classic movies look amazing in HD,” he says, “But more than that, HD has been an opportunity for us to move up the consideration list. By getting into the market early we are giving platforms what they want and creating greater visibility among consumers. It’s almost like dialling back to the early years of multichannel television.” MGM’s HD deals to date have been in the US, UK, Poland, Israel, Brazil and, most recently, Spanish-speaking Latin America. Available via Cablevision Argentina, Cablevision Mexico and Sky Mexico, Tuchman believes this deal, in a market which was historically slow to embrace pay-TV, is further evidence of the speed at which HD is bedding down.The dial-back effect is proving particularly valuable to US channel operators, many of which have access to native HD content from their domestic market (as opposed to SD content which has to be upconverted before it can be classified as HD). At MIPTV, for example, Scripps-owned Food Network announced plans to launch an HD version on Orbit-Showtime Network in the Middle East. Given that this launch came just a few months after the arrival of an SD version of Food Network in the UK and as a pan-regional feed in continental Europe, it’s a sign that newer players in the multichannel market see HD as an opportunity to leap ahead of rivals.Commenting on Food Network’s rapid move into the HD market, Scripps Networks International president Greg Moyer confirms that “the ability to tap our substantial library of quality high-definition lifestyle programming is an important driver of distribution, especially in EMEA markets.” And the good news is that platforms are responding positively. Marc-Antoine d’Halluin, CEO of Orbit Showtime Network, says that “having Food Network on HD really marks us out as forerunners in the Middle East and North Africa, bringing programming the way they are meant to be watched – in high-definition – and we’re proud to be leading the way.”Like MGM and Scripps, Rainbow Media is reveling in the opportunity offered by HD to promote channel brands such as Sundance Channel and We tv. “For us there’s an added advantage that our US parent company Cablevision has one of the world’s most advanced HD offerings,” says senior vice-president, international distribution, Ed Palluth. “We go to market with real understanding of the sector. For example we know from Cablevision research that the same show rates better in HD than in SD.”Like other channel operators, Rainbow has taken Sundance into Poland. But a particular coup has been the channel’s entry into France via platforms including Numéricable, Free and Alice. “We benefit from having a lot of high-quality native HD production to offer the international market,” says Palluth, “and we are also able to leverage HD content from our other US channels AMC and IFC.”HD offeringThere’s no hard and fast rule about what a channel operator’s HD offering comprises For some, the answer has been to simulcast, while for others it has been to create a “best of” channel. An example of the former is NBC Universal’s launch of SyFy in Germany while the latter group includes MTVN HD, a combination of music, event, extreme sport and kids shows (HD versions of Nick content are shown at weekends). The final choice depends on a number of factors, says BBC Worldwide channels senior vice-president and general manager, EMEA, Ian McDonough, ranging from the availability of native HD content to bandwidth capacity issues (one of the practical limitations which prevents platforms from simply duplicating everything). “Our approach has been to create a single high quality BBC HD channel. It offers everything from documentaries like Planet Earth to dramas like Whitechapel and Hustle,” he says. This has proved popular with platforms, says McDonough, “because it appeals to a family audience, whereas a lot of early phase HD channels are geared more towards men. We’ve successfully taken it into markets like Scandinavia [Canal Digital] Turkey [Turksat] and Poland [various], where the sale of HD-ready TV sets is now outstripping the sale of traditional receivers.”AETN International has gone down both routes with its History, Bio and Crime brands “depending on the individual market,” says AETN International’s senior vice-president Sean Cohan. “Sometimes the decision whether to simulcast or launch a differentiated service is about the economics, sometimes it’s about the rights. But just as often it’s about local audience tastes or the promotional needs of the platform. In the UK, for example, Sky charges an HD premium, so it makes sense to offer viewers different editorial.”Of course, this growing surge of activity around HD raises a whole host of commercial considerations. For example, with most channel chiefs predicting HD ubiquity at some point in the future, with HD replacing SD as the de facto standard, does it mean that all of them should be rushing HD channels to market? Does failure to act mean in obsolescence in the future?[icitspot id=”9284″ template=”box-story”]Cohan, who has seen shifts in behaviour on the US side, is cautious on this point: “I can see that 2011 might be a good year for HD if the global economy comes out of recession. But you have to keep in mind that there are still a lot of people who haven’t made the switch to HD. I don’t think we can quite say the tipping point has been reached for HD.”This point is echoed by Chellomedia’s chief operating officer Niall Curran, whose company runs a diverse portfolio of local and pan-regional channels. “How quickly you move is really down to a combination of market conditions and the kind of channels you operate,” he says. “HD represents quite an investment, so you want to make sure you’re getting into a significant number of homes when you sign a carriage deal. How quickly you act also depends on whether your channel is the service that will help the platform market its HD offering to customers. Often this is a discussion with the platforms.”There’s no question, for example, that blue-chip brands like Discovery HD, National Geographic Channel HD and MTVN HD are regarded as must-haves for most platforms. Starting in 2006, Discovery HD has rolled out across many of the major markets in the world, most recently linking up with cable operators Virgin Media in the UK and Zon Multimédia in Portugal in June. Prior to that, the majority of Discovery HD’s deals were with satellite platforms, so the fact that cable players are ramping up their HD offerings is further evidence of a new phase in the rollout of the format. This point is also underlined by MTVN HD’s deals, which include carriage agreements with Deutsche Telekom’s German IPTV platform T-Entertain, Hungarian DTH operation Hello HD, UK cable operator Virgin Media and Russian DTH outfit Platforma.Chellomedia’s portfolio also illustrates the point. While a pan-regional Chellomedia channel like Reality TV is not likely to get HD early-adopters trading up their television set or paying a subscription premium, a service like Central European documentary channel Spektrum might. Available to 3.6 million homes across markets such as Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, Chellomedia decided that it did make sense to go HD in this rapidly-growing region, says Curran. “For us, the critical business decision has been to invest in our own architecture so we are completely equipped to deal with HD internally,” he says. “But the decision about when to go to market with an HD channel is dependent on market conditions. Our view is that it is dangerous to race ahead of the customer, particularly with channels which are based around the acquisition of third party rights. But it felt like the right time for Spektrum HD.”Chellomedia has taken a similar decision with Mov, a male-oriented action/horror movie channel it runs in partnership with Portuguese platform Zon Multimédia. Even more compelling was the case for going HD with Film1, its premium movie service in the Netherlands. Film1, and its accompanying channel portfolio, is the main provider of box office movies in Holland, and was a very early adopter of HD, says channel chief Casper Keller says: “It was expensive at first because so much content had to be upconverted from SD, but it was a way for us to gain experience in the market and offer our platform partners a point of differentiation with customers.” Like his US counterparts, Keller says there is no going back once consumers experience HD. “We simulcast Film1 in SD and HD, and we know that, given the choice, audiences watch the HD version.” Interestingly, Film1 does not charge its subscribers a premium for watching the HD version of the channel. Contrast that with the UK where Sky has managed to bolt on an extra £10 (e12) a month for giving its subscribers access to its HD bouquet. This raises an obvious question. Does HD represent a potential revenue boost for channels and platforms? Or does the ability to charge disappear as HD becomes universal? “Eventually, HD becomes the new SD,” says Keller, “in the way analogue was replaced by digital. But there are a variety of factors that will influence the speed of that transition. So during that period there will be some platforms which can charge customers extra.”Level of competitionOne obvious factor is the level of competition within markets: “In some territories there’s a kind of technology arms race going on,” says Rainbow Media’s Palluth. “In a market like Poland, where you have numerous platforms using HD and VOD to try and secure a competitive advantage, it’s tough to secure the kind of price premium that Sky gets.”Similarly, in the crowded Scandinavian market, HDTV was once seen as a USP for satellite operators. But with cable, DTT and IPTV platforms all encroaching on the space, there’s an inevitable downward pressure on pricing, says BBC Worldwide’s McDonough: “Here you have some HD channels available on basic, which is very different to the situation in the UK. Rather than pushing up prices, HD becomes a way of controlling churn.”The prospect of HD channels populating the basic tier is made ever more likely now that free-to-air channels are entering both the pay-TV and the DTT space. The same is true for brands like Eurosport, a business whose ethos is built around maximising subscriptions on the basic tier. While the early phase of rollout has seen Eurosport HD sitting within designated HD sections of the EPG, the likelihood is that the channel will be at the forefront of the trend towards HD channels in basic. In the Nordic region,  Eurosport general manager Amanda Evans says the arrival of an HD service in basic has been warmly welcomed by platforms looking for a competitive edge: “HD penetration here is high,” says Evans, “so the platforms have welcomed the chance to populate the basic tier with HD versions of established brands.”Of course, one noticeable development in the last six months has been the way set manufacturers and platforms have started talking up 3D. That sounds exciting for consumers, but surely it’s a distraction for channel operators that have only just started to see light at the end of the HD tunnel. Executives including Cohan are philosophical: “The pace of change is ever greater, but that’s the reality of the business and what makes it so interesting. Our view is that HD is real and happening now. 3D is a little further down the line and is probably more suited to event TV.”[icitspot id=”9283″ template=”box-story”]As with HD, the speed at which channel operators move into the 3D space will be dictated to a large extent by content supply and demand, says Rainbow Media’s Palluth: “The Sundance Channel is mainly built around independent films made on fairly tight budgets, so I don’t anticipate it being a consideration for the channel in the near future.”David Pounds, chief executive of programme distributor Electric sky, provides a useful insight into the state of the 3D content market: “We were one of the first companies to start looking at the 3D market from a content sales point of view. At MIPCOM last year, there were four or five channels showing interest in the area. This year, I’d expect it to be more like 40 or 50, which shows how quickly excitement has built in the area.”An interesting footnote is that US cable giant Comcast’s decision to deliver 100 HD channels, double the previous offering, is putting pressure on the operator to reduce its analogue tier to free up bandwidth. Subscribers to Comcast’s expanded basic tier have been told to install a digital box or risk losing channels. The message is that HD is on the cusp of pushing SD channels to one side.last_img read more

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