End of the road: Fortuna falls to Foothill

first_imgPerfect moments are, for the most part, fleeting.For the Huskies, the city of Fortuna and lovers of Humboldt-Del Norte League basketball, a perfect moment which spanned 92 days — dating back to the Huskies’ season-opening win on Nov. 29 — came to a close Thursday night. as the No. 7 Fortuna Huskies boys’ basketball team fell 58-56 to the No. 15 Foothill Cougars (Palo Cedro).The California Interscholastic Federation State Boys Championships (NorCals) Division-III quarterfinal-round loss ends a …last_img read more

Teeth Resist Cracking

first_img51; Here’s a story to share with your dentist.  You can crack a tooth, but it takes a lot of force.  This should be surprising, since tooth enamel is as brittle as glass.  The way the enamel develops, researchers found, absorbs excess energy and gives your teeth an extraordinary crack resistance.    “Human enamel is brittle,” begins an article on Science Daily.  “Like glass, it cracks easily; but unlike glass, enamel is able to contain cracks and remain intact for most individuals’ lifetimes.”    Researchers at George Washington University found, surprisingly, a function for mistakes (or what might be mistakenly thought of as mistakes).  During tooth development, tiny imperfections called tufts form.  The tufts allow cracks to develop from the inside, not the surface, where they might otherwise form sites for decay.  “Acting together like a forest of small flaws, tufts suppress the growth of these cracks by distributing the stress amongst themselves.”  They found even more functions for these slight imperfections:“This is the first time that enigmatic developmental features, such as enamel tufts, have been shown to have any significance in tooth function” said GW researcher Paul Constantino.  “Crack growth is also hampered by the ‘basket weave’ microstructure of enamel, and by a ‘self-healing’ process whereby organic material fills cracks extended from the tufts, which themselves also become closed by organic matter.  This type of infilling bonds the opposing crack walls, which increases the amount of force required to extend the crack later on.”So it appears that the tooth is engineered to grow even stronger against cracking over time.  The team found strong resemblances between the teeth of sea otters and humans in these self-healing characteristics.Did this article mention evolution?  Yes! — but not in the way you might be expecting.  No just-so story here.  Get this: “This research evolved as part of an interdisciplinary collaboration between anthropologists from The George Washington University and physical scientists from the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg, Md.  The team studied tooth enamel in humans and also sea otters, mammals with teeth showing remarkable resemblances to those of humans.”  That’s intelligent design, folks!  It was guided by human curiosity and following the evidence where it leads.  This is bound to cause some tooth grinding in the halls of the NCSE.(Visited 12 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Entrepreneurs get digital master class

first_imgA group of entrepreneurs learned a number of valuable business lessons from the experts – among them incubators and funders – at the first MTN Business South Africa digital entrepreneur master class.Entrepreneurs and representatives of MTN Business South Africa take part in a digital entrepreneur master class in Johannesburg on 27 October 2016, where they are encouraged to share the stories of their businesses online. (Image: Musa Sibisi)Melissa JavanEntrepreneurs and stakeholders in MTN Business South Africa took part in a digital entrepreneur master class, a first of its kind event hosted by the business unit of the multinational mobile telecommunications company.Various companies, such as cellphone maker Samsung South Africa and advertising sales company Ad Dynamo exhibited some of their new products and services. MTN Business used the event, which was held on 27 October in Bryanston, Johannesburg, to teach entrepreneurs about a variety of business issues, such as how to set up a company website within minutes.Mike Anderson of the National Small Business Council, speaking at the MTN Business South Africa digital entrepreneur master class in Johannesburg on 27 October 2016, gives recent statistics about small businesses, saying that 43% of small business owners find sales and marketing a challenge. (Image: Melissa Javan)Be a rainmakerMike Anderson of the National Small Business Council said the council undertook a survey of more than 10 000 small business owners. “The fastest growing services among entrepreneurs are professional services. These are your doctors and nurses opening up their own practices,” he said.Anderson commended entrepreneurs. “The animal of an entrepreneur [makes] him go from zero to hero to zero to hero again. It is better to fail a thousand times than to have not tried at all.”Speaking about areas in which small business owners struggled, he mentioned sales and marketing: 43% found this challenging; and business and strategic planning: 26% found this challenging.Anderson urged entrepreneurs to become rainmakers. “Give your business a digital transformation. Be brutal on money.”Lynette Ntuli, CEO of Innate Investment Solutions, speaking at the MTN Business South Africa digital entrepreneur master class in Johannesburg on 27 October 2016, says there is no economic growth or prospects for the country without small, medium and micro enterprises. (Image: Musa Sibisi)David Mphelo said the master class was held so that entrepreneurs could learn the tools necessary to enable them to be the next players in the digital space. “We need to play digital as the next catalysts.”“Digital” and “business”, he said, would be synonymous by 2018. “Global statistics show that by 2018, 1.1 billion new users will be on the mobile messaging platforms.”The Master classesWeiling Chiu of MTN Business Group’s SME division, gave a class on “Marketing your business on a dime”.As an entrepreneur, she said, you should ask yourself daily why you are doing what you are doing. “People buy why you can do it, not what you do… Remember you are your own Picasso of your business.”She showed the entrepreneurs free websites where you could, for example, check your grammar, get free stock images, create templates or newsletters, manage your social media accounts, and post a week’s worth of content on the platforms within minutes.Zukile Nomafu of the small business enterprise support programme National Gazelles gave tips on how entrepreneurs could use incubation programmes to accelerate their businesses. There were more than 90 incubators in South Africa, he said.Small business owners should keep in mind that incubators focused on growth and issues relating to funding, he added. “We do not focus on the normal day to day problems of your business.”On entrepreneurs seeking funding, he advised: “Funders take little risk – they do not like taking risks. So, get your story right first. If you get your story right, 80% of you will not need funding.”Zukile Nomafu of National Gazelles, speaking at the MTN Business South Africa digital entrepreneur master class in Johannesburg on 27 October 2016, says the first 1 000 days of an entrepreneur’s business is difficult. “It is known as the valley of death.” (Image: Melissa Javan)Before joining an incubator, according to Nomafu, you should:• Research your options; this means you should ask yourself what do you want to get out of the programme, such as mentors.• Talk to alumni.• Assemble your team.• Master your pitch.• Decide what you want to give.• Seek legal advice.Going beyond South AfricaIt was important for entrepreneurs to know what they wanted to do, said Omotayo Ojutalayo of the MTN Business Group’s SME division. “Think how is your solution to the South African market and beyond. Is your solution relevant for a country outside South Africa?”She added: “[Your] idea will have a very low optic (vision) if it is too complex to communicate. Keep it simple.”Ojutalayo said entrepreneurs should also think about with whom they could collaborate. “(When attempting to collaborate with someone) think about how far this partner can take you. Ask: can my potential partner add to my business that is appealing to people?“Also, what skills does my partner have that I don’t?”Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa materiallast_img read more

Pro Tips From Edit Fest London: Advance Your Editing Career

first_imgLooking to advance in your editing career? Check out this pro advice from Edit Fest London 2015.Top Image from IMDb. All other images from American Cinema Editors.If you’re already a working editor, or assistant editor, getting that break to take your career to the next stage can be a challenge. While at the recent Edit Fest London, an all day event organized by the American Cinema Editors (ACE), which takes place in New York and LA (the next event is August 1st in LA), I got to hear from top editors like Mark Sanger (Gravity), Barney Pilling (Grand Budapest Hotel), Lisa Gunning (Seven Psychopaths, 50 Shades of Grey) Anthony Boys (Veep, In the Loop) and Yan Miles (Sherlock, Band of Brothers) – to name just a few of the fine Edit Fest London panelists. That and, if you stayed for the after party, you had the chance to meet Walter Murch!What was really interesting, as a working editor myself – and what I’ve drawn together in this post – was hearing these top professionals share advice on how to advance your editing career to the next stage, and preparing yourself for the ever changing nature of the editing job itself.Moving From One Genre To AnotherOne of the most important things that was repeated by all of the editors, whether in the TV, feature or final panel, was the career defining importance of relationships with directors and producers. That your relationships with directors are what could really open up doors for you as you follow them onward and upward in their own careers.One question from the audience concerned how fluidly an editor might be able to move between commercials, independent feature films and television, as well as between different genres of content. According to Anthony Boys ACE, a highly successful editor of comedy shows such as Veep and In The Thick Of It:It’s becoming harder and harder to move between genres. I had done a whole bunch of comedy, and some really great comedy and I got onto Dr. Who because a director wanted me. And there was this big conversation about “Can we really bring this guy in if he’s only really done comedy, is he a drama editor?” Which is insane, because any of the editors up here could cut Veep.Although director David Fincher’s editors Angus Wall and Kirk Baxter have made a successful career of moving between features and commercials — based on their relationship with Fincher, a director who also started out in commercials and music videos — it seems like it’s actually quite a rare feat to pull off. Here’s what John Wilson, ACE had to say about it:I would say the two disciplines you can move fairly fluidly between is television and features. I would say with commercials, they are very much, in my experience, a sort of closed unit. and you can’t just do an occasional commercial because commercial editors will at any one time have 10-12 commercials on the go, so you can’t just take one off the shelf.Whatever discipline of editing you want to get into you do need to make motivated choices to pursue a particular direction, otherwise it’s easy to be ‘type-cast’, even if in your own heart. Yan Miles said:I did commercial stuff before I got into drama. And i did make a decision in my head – If i carry on doing this, this is all I’m going to do and I cannot carry on working for a pack-shot. I can’t. That’s not me… I made a decision to go back into drama, but I didn’t walk in as an editor, I came back in as an assistant and came into the process properly.To round these thoughts off, Caroline Bleakley shared probably the most practical piece of advice on the subject of moving successfully between editing genres/disciplines:Have someone who champions you. Thats probably the most realistic way that you’ll transition. Is to have someone who takes you with them. Because they’re going to be the ones who stand up and say “No I want them.” and they’ll be the ones who fight your corner. That’s probably the most realistic way to change genre.Being DiplomaticIn the afternoon, the panel of film editors offered some great advice about the other 50% of the job as an editor – handling all the people who might end up in your edit suite in a diplomatic fashion. American Cinema Editor’s Vice President and the high-caliber editor Stephen Rivkin (Avatar, Pirates of the Caribbean, Ali) said it best when he said:Diplomacy is absolutely essential. Your ability to sell an idea that you believe is the right thing to do, to service the story – which is paramount, is everything. Many a battle lost in the cutting room, is perhaps the downfall of a potentially good film. And your ability to convince a director, especially one who has written the material, that it might be a better idea to forgo a scene or a part of a scene, can make all the difference in the world… Communication skills are everything. When I went to film school, the one thing that they did not teach you was psychology, which is maybe the one thing that should have been on the curriculum.They also covered the tricky and often loaded process of navigating preview screenings and the resulting feedback cards from the test audience. Lisa Gunning said, “I hate it, but it’s really good for the film.” Stephen Rivkin contributed his thoughts:It’s very important to look at the trends in a preview situation. If a huge percentage feel a certain way about the length or a certain scene. … But it’s such an imprecise science. Every scientific experiment has a control and there is no control. Again be able to convince someone to either test it again, I mean really they should test the same version two or three times, but they don’t because it costs way too much.It was great to hear that, whether or not your work is being screened in a test-preview with focus groups and score cards, there is a universal method of testing your project’s strengths and weaknesses that we can all take advantage of – watching it with other people. Rivkin continued:The most useful thing is not the focus group but just sitting there with people. You feel it. That’s all you need to know. How many people are fidgeting around, or laughing – when they shouldn’t be – that happens all the time and that’s terrifying when you’ve got a highly emotional scene and people are laughing through it. That’s the information I need to know as an editor… but if 75% of the people say I got really bored half-way through (which they always do) then you have to try and do something about that.As a result of many years experience, Rivkin had some great advice on the importance of being a skillful diplomat in the edit suite – largely because the film’s creative success is at stake:The ability to sell ideas and protect the story. because there are many people involved in the process, producers, executives and many of them after seeing it a number of times, develop a very short attention span. Part of the job besides selling good ideas, is protecting other things from biting the dust that probably need to be protected.Editing is ChangingOne of the most interesting and unexpected things that came out of the day, was that editing is changing. Visual effects heavy films like Avatar or Gravity – in which almost the entire film is CGI, based on performance capture, are changing the way in which films are edited. First all of the dailies from performance capture reference cameras are edited to create a film in which the sole focus is the performance. This can be a little strange to watch because the camera angles that from reference cameras were filming from bare no relation to what the final shot will be, when the performance is played back into the virtual environment to be captured by the virtual camera.If you need a bit more detail to visualize this concept, then this Avatar behind the scenes featurette will explain it a little further and allow you to see – if you freeze frame at 2.01 – a shot of James Cameron’s monitor on which you can see the kind of dailies that editors were working with — Largely close ups of the actors’ faces from whatever particular angle they happened to be shot at.Here’s more from Stephen Rivkin regarding performance capture.Mark Sanger and Stephen Rivkin’s conversation at Edit Fest London about this kind of work was pretty illuminating, so I’ve quoted some of it in full below.SR – Imagine the freedom that a director would have to work solely with the actors for the first go round, and not been concerned about about sets, or costumes or make up, or crews, or dolly moves, or cranes or actors not remembering their lines, or hitting their marks – because we only used the very best of the performances for the playback, to shoot the film. So the second go around we’d shoot the film in virtual form, and then do an edit of that.MS – Having done similar stuff. My thing is that when you run the first past for the studio executives, you have to say ”ignore the camera angles”…  because the first reaction is ”those angles are all wrong.”SR – Well by the time the studio saw the film for the very first time, it was a mosaic of the intermediate previs stage, which kind of looks like a basic video game, some scenes that were in a finished final render stage, and some scenes were in the performance capture edit stage, and it was amazing to me how the story was still communicated even though you’re just looking at actors in funny suits, and they could still follow the story, and because there was enough of an indication of what it would look like, your imagination could fill in the blanks. And it just got better as it filled in. In the beginning there was a  9 month turn around to get a finished shot. Every two weeks we had to deliver more scenes and feed the pipeline because the turn around was so long.JW – Was it difficult to be decisive, having almost limitless options?SR – The scenes would evolve and there was an interaction between the editor and the director that was new.  Because usually we get footage we edit it, we have a relationship with the director where they come in and look at it and say what the hell is this?! What did I do… and they get all depressed. Here we had an opportunity to bring the editor in earlier. Once the capture is done and we’re done with the performance part. Then we had a way to interact on the set while we were doing shot creation. I started editing the shots as they were coming in on the virtual stage, streamed into the Avid.And Jim would come over and say what have you got so far? And we’d look at it and he’d say ”maybe we need a shot that would do this…” and I could say ”yeah that’s great or what about a shot that would do this…” and all of a sudden as an editor I had a voice I never had before with a director. It was new territory.It will be fascinating to see if this revolution in editorial craft – handling performance capture, re-shooting and re-editing on the fly — will be as impactful as the change from film to digital has been for the creative process. Looking for words of wisdom from some professional editors? Check out the following links.Film Editing Lessons from Oscar-Winner William GoldenbergInsights from Several Top Television EditorsDocumentary Film Editors Talk About Their ProcessAny thoughts on the advice shared by these editing big shots? Let us know in the comments below!last_img read more