My Home Screen: Jon Mitchell, ReadWriteWeb

first_imgTop Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting FacebookMapsCalendarInstagramFacebook MessengerDay OnePocketReederEvernoteMailRemindersBywordPhonePhotosDraftsQuotebookMessagesPastebotLaunch Center ProTweetbotA Closer LookMy iPhone is my most personal computer, so I’ve put lots of work into customizing my home screen. The wallpaper is “Sunset” by Dean Putney, which I got from Simple Desktops. I find the purple hues go with just about any app icon.Here’s how I decided what to put on the first page of apps.For me, a smartphone has three essential functions, in my view: communication, planning and navigation. On top of that, I have three hobbies in which my iPhone plays a central role: reading, writing and photography. I set up my home screen around those priorities.Facebook is my most important communication channel, as you can see from the fact that I have two Facebook apps on page one. It’s where all my friends and family are, and we use it for pretty much everything. This is why I’m so stoked about the new Facebook integration on iOSI use the built-in Calendar and Reminders, but I use Google Calendar as the back end. Having Facebook events integrated into iOS calendars is a huge help.Evernote is where I store my long-term and big-picture ideas, so I have to have that accessible. I find the iOS app to be pretty clunky and hard to use, though, so I capture most of my ideas with Drafts. It launches straight into a blank text field, and I can send what I type into any of the more full-featured text apps I use. Those include Byword, where I write my blog posts, and Day One, my private journal.I keep Reeder on my front screen so I can remember to comb through my RSS feeds regularly and save the articles I want to read. Those end up in Pocket, which as you can see by the number attached to the icon, is quite full at the moment .Quotebook is a tiny app, but I love it. It’s for capturing and sharing quotations that you love. Things end up in there from all over my phone.Finally, there’s Instagram, my favorite app. It’s like a lens through which I share the world with a handful of people who see it like I do – or who see it very differently in beautiful ways. I do most of my actual shooting from the stock Camera app, which I access from the lock screen, and then I open the images in Instagram once I’ve gotten the shot.The DockThe four apps on the iPhone dock have special roles because they’re visible on every screen. I chose three apps I need constantly and one that contains multitudes. I’ll explain that separately.While Facebook is the most important communication channel, Messages is the fastest. Not everyone uses Facebook Messenger, so Facebook messages and posts generally have to be for things requiring less immediate response time. Plus, iMessage is awesome (on the phone, anyway), so my iPhone-using friends and I communicate that way for immediate things. jon mitchell Tweetbot is my Twitter client of choice. I use it on iPhone, iPad and the beta for Mac. I think it’s the perfect way to interact with Twitter, and I hope Twitter never takes it away.And then there’s Launch Center.Launch CenterLaunch Center by App Cubby is like a cheat code for the iPhone. The key thing to know about it is that it can launch actions, not just apps. So it’s the perfect place to put apps that you use constantly for very specific things, but that you don’t want cluttering up your main app spaces.I mainly use Launch Center for Foursquare check-ins, Localscope searches, quickly getting to Web addresses, and turning my flashlight app on and off.What Else Is On My Phone?On the second page, the left half is occupied by folders for various tasks: talk/chat, navigation, photography, writing, media, various business and banking apps, and one for various other Web services. The right half has the App Store and Settings apps, Safari, Localscope, a great Dropbox-based audio recording app called DropVox, Prismatic, Clock and the quick video camera app Capture.What Goes On The iPhone 5’s Extra Row?By now, you may have noticed that my home screen is rather short, since I have an iPhone 4. You’d better believe I know what four apps I’m adding to the front page when my iPhone 5 arrives. It’ll be Safari, Localscope, Prismatic and Capture. I can’t wait. If there’s one thing in my digital life that exemplifies how I use my phone, it’s Evernote. Like my Evernote notebooks, I keep my home screen carefully organized for maximum usefulness. This is the computer I have with me everywhere, so I keep it primed to be ready for anything.Why I Use An iPhoneThe iPhone has always been my smartphone of choice. Using it feels the most like using a physical object, rather than virtual representations on a screen. The responsiveness and gestures in iOS overcome the illusion of software for me. It just feels like using real tools.The other reasons I use an iPhone are the tools themselves. I think the third-party software in the App Store is the best software ecosystem there is. I always manage to find something that helps me do exactly what I need to do. So here’s what I’ve chosen.What’s On My Home Screen A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img Tags:#apps#web Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Related Posts 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

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Zipcar Sells Out To Avis For $500 Million: A Bad Sign For Innovation

first_imgWhy Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Zipcar is the Apple of car rental services. Like other nimble disruptors (think Square, Uber) Zipcar “just works” in a way that competitors are light years away from matching. But while Apple’s massive success has reinforced its winning formula, some other less-patient disruptors are looking for the door. Today’s news that Avis will buy Zipcar for $500 million is not only bad news for loyal Zipcar customers (myself among them), but an unsettling message from an industry innovator turned sell-out.Zipcar Vs. The Miserable Industry StandardIf you haven’t used Zipcar, it’s impossible to convey just how pleasant renting a car this way is when pitted against the traditional car rental experience. In participating cities, Zipcars are sprinkled in parking lots and other locations across town. To rent a Zipcar, you need only your smartphone and a member card, which lets you into a car after you’ve reserved it. You take it out for the time you reserved, get it back on time and park it right where you left it.Take this anecdote: Just before Christmas, I’d planned to visit Bend, Oregon – a little over three hours from my home base in Portland. Realizing that the car we planned to take out of town might not make it through the snowy mountain pass that keeps rainy Portland at arm’s length from the high desert, we decided to rent a car for the same day. I scoured three simultaneous travel search aggregators (Orbitz, Kayak, Expedia), tested a handful of hit-or-miss Retailmenot.com coupons and made a handful of calls to numbers that mostly redirected to automated national car rental 1-800 hotlines. After more than an hour of searching, I landed an online reservation that sounded like it would work – a compact car for about $40 a day. I could pick the car up in about an hour. When I called the local office to confirm the reservation, I learned not only that the rental location had literally zero cars to rent out, but that the guy who answered the phone had no intention whatsoever of calling to loop me into that bit of knowledge.  Beyond frustrated, I loaded Zipcar’s website, picked a truck that looked like it could handle winter weather and confirmed my reservation – the entire process took five minutes. I’d initially planned to rent through a traditional rental agency (Avis, Enterprise, Budget – much like Android phone manufacturers or PC-makers, they’re all the same to most consumers) to save money, but factoring in the cost of gas on a 324-mile round trip, the included insurance and the time it would take to book another reservation, it no longer seemed worth it. At that point I was thrilled to pay more for a Zipcar to avoid the headache of a traditional car rental exchange – just like I’m willing to pay a premium on a Mac to get a reliable, virus-free computing experience in an elegant package. And I could have even done it, maybe even faster, on my phone. Disruption at its finest. R.I.P. Zipcar: 2000 to 2013It remains to be seen if Avis has plans to rebrand Zipcar, but it certainly shouldn’t. As well-established as it may be, many people hate Avis (and its competitors) because it’s a car rental company, just like many people hate all airlines and credit card companies. Rather than using its dated, inherently flawed industry know-how to suffocate Zipcar’s disruptive vision, Avis should instead remodel itself around the upstart. It’s an opportunity to prove that people don’t have to hate the kinds of companies that we’ve come to hate. But considering that Zipcar made $3.9 million in 2011, compared to Avis’s $5.9 billion, don’t hold your breath. If you’re a cool, disruptive tech company looking to get cash out via a lucrative buyout, you better hope that your new mothership won’t run you into the ground for lack of understanding your innovative model. Unless you plan to stop caring as soon as you have the cash in hand. Maybe you’re convinced that you can remain intact under your new banner, or that you’ll be able to revolutionize things from the inside out. And hey, Google built itself into what it is today by acquiring smart startups across wide swath of industries (imagine if Google had snagged Zipcar to build out its crazy vision of smart cars) – but Avis is about as un-Googly as it gets. Beyond seeing a growing threat to its clunky, outmoded business model, maybe, just maybe, Avis sees the potential to turn its own miserable industry on its head. If the company is just trying to neuter a threat to the awful experience of renting a car today, it’ll be a damn shame. Zipcar, like other companies rethinking transactions and businesses that more and more people are coming to loathe, was poised to change the industry altogether – and it had been playing the long game since 2000.I’m sorry to see it not stay the course. Related Posts taylor hatmaker A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Tags:#startups#transportation last_img read more

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Social Enterprise Is Not Living Up To Its Promise

first_imgRelated Posts Tags:#enterprise IT#Salesforce#social brian proffitt Massive Non-Desk Workforce is an Opportunity fo… 3 Areas of Your Business that Need Tech Nowcenter_img IT + Project Management: A Love Affair Cognitive Automation is the Immediate Future of… If you’re not hearing a lot about social enterprise these days, it may be because no one can figure out what the hell social enterprise is.On paper, the concept sounds reasonable, even important: take popular social media tools (microblogs, wikis, blogs, etc.) and use them for internal collaboration, project management and overall feel-good business practices.Social Entreprise vs. Business As UsualBut in practice, a lot of companies have found that actually using this stuff is not a magic wand to bring forth happiness and productivity to their organization. The reason? Social media tools in the enterprise often work counter to the internal communications practices that have long been ingrained in companies.For instance, in theory it might seem like a good idea to coordinate creative activities on social platforms. But in reality, there’s always going to be the managerial hold-out who won’t accept a project as actually moving forward unless there’s a meeting or memos – the very things social enterprise practices are trying to eliminate. And there could be a legitimate need for this, too: If not done properly, social enterprise software can fail at making sure someone deals with all the boring minutia, like documentation for regulatory purposes, which could be a huge no-no.Then there’s the issue of figuring when and for what social enterprise should be used? In too many cases, employees may get confused over when and how they’re supposed to turn to the social media platform in their day-to-day jobs. And if only some workers engage with the platform, its utility is greatly reduced. You Can’t Force Workers To Be SocialToo often, enterprises overlook the importance of organic adoption of social media. You can’t just flick a switch and turn on a social network – and an email from the CEO won’t work either. Instructions to go social from the IT department are even more likely to ignored. The appeal of these platforms lies in the very fact that they grow and evolve network connections at their own pace – as users find them helpful and engaging. Social media tools do make it easier to establish those connections, but it’s not something you can force.That’s why, when I read news like Salesforce may be moving away from its social enterprise channel and focusing more on cloud computing, I’m not surprised.ZDNet writer Dan Dignan points out other reasons that help explain why social enterprise seems to be failing. My personal favorite? That social enterprise is like a cleverly disguised version of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP). And that dog just won’t hunt. “ERP software changed companies fundamentally, but also led to spectacular IT disasters largely due to people, process and culture. Social with business process integration won’t work.”So does that mean the entire concept of social enterprise is doomed?Not necessarily. The gigant-o, everything-but-the-kitchen-sink enterprise social platforms imposed from the top are indeed in trouble. But targeted tools that companies and their employees pick and choose to bring social techniques to specific projects and use cases may still find success. But that’s still a much-reduced vision of the social enterprise’s original promise Image courtesy of Shutterstock.last_img read more

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Google Acquires Bump, The Simple File Sharing App

first_imgGoogle has acquired Bump, the application that lets users touch devices to share files and information and one of the top 25 best-selling iPhone apps of all time. Bump and Flock, the collaborative photo sharing service it founded last year, will continue to maintain their services but the company said users should stay tuned for future updates.The terms of the deal were not disclosed. It’s unclear why the tech giant scooped up the five-year-old startup, but Google could have acquired Bump for its easy-to-use file-sharing technology as a response to Apple’s AirDrop, which is integrated into iOS 7. Earlier this month, we sat down with Bump founder David Lieb, who told us the secret to Bump’s success. “I don’t have to think about anything, I just bump the phones together and it works—that’s what’s allowed Bump to get so big,” he said. “It’s just dead simple.”That simplicity could be exactly what Google is looking for.  Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Related Posts Tags:#Bump#Google A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… selena larson 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

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Want to Set Your Small Business Up For Success? Do This.

first_imgAs senior vice president of SMB marketing at Salesforce, Marie Rosecrans focuses on empowering small and medium businesses with the tools and resources they need to grow. Before joining Salesforce in 2008, she held positions in customer support, professional services, product marketing, and program management at Oracle, Peoplesoft, Evolve, and Primavera. Marie lives in the San Francisco Bay area and enjoys hiking and traveling with her husband, teen, and tween. How OKR’s Completely Transformed Our Culture Marie Rosecrans How to Get Started in China and Have Success What Nobody Teaches You About Getting Your Star… Tags:#Culture#startup#success China and America want the AI Prize Title: Who … Related Posts Let’s talk about values. Not family values or stock values, but company values: the bedrock of an organization. A company’s core values define it in a way nothing else can. They support the vision and shape the culture. They are the principles and beliefs that define the work. They are what drive the company.Some leaders consider values a soft sell or nice-to-have. Small businesses, in particular, are often hyper-focused on the product in a rush to get to market, forgetting to acknowledge the underlying foundation that helps a company run smoothly. But research shows that companies that lead with their values are better positioned to achieve strong customer loyalty, employee engagement, and team productivity. So if you want to set your business up for growth and long-term success, you’ve got to take time to focus on values.First things first: Define your values.Values act as a North Star for the company; they pinpoint what’s important, which then helps determine where to focus individual time and effort. Here at Salesforce, our #1 value is trust, a value which has become the backbone of our company (Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff even spoke at Davos this year about the importance of trust in an organization). That emphasis reverberates through everything we do and defines who we are as a company. Aside from trust, our Salesforce culture is guided by other core values of customer success, innovation, and equality. Every day, we’re personally responsible for living these values and holding each other accountable for them. These are the values that inspire us and help us to grow.So think about the values that matter to your small business; what’s important to consider as you grow? Perhaps consider Benioff’s advice: “What is the most important thing to you in your company? Really look at your value system. What’s #1? If everything is important, nothing is important. You have to choose what is really important to you.”Next, distribute your values.With competition what it is today — intense — companies often lose sight of what drives them. To make sure you’re accountable for your values, you’ve got to make them visible. For years companies have thrown them right on the conference room wall. Other small businesses — like SalesLoft, QGenda, and Thompson Pump — opt to define their values on their websites for easy reference. Some companies go the traditional route with simple values (like trust, respect, and equality), which others take a modern approach with idea statements (like team over self, bias toward action, or focus on impact).A good litmus test for whether a company lives its values is to ask the employees to name them. Would your employees be able to list the company values if asked? Could they tell you how they shine through in their day-to-day roles? If not, it’s time to shout them a little louder.Make those values stick.It’s one thing to write down your values — and quite another to live up to them every day. So once you’ve gone through the motions of defining and distributing your company’s values, you’ve actually got to make them stick. That means “living” your values. Let your values guide the company; they can dictate your decisions, your product direction, and even whom you hire. Values stretch us to be our very best, which is why you’ve got to embed them in how you work.We’ve seen several recent examples where companies have received negative publicity because values were either compromised or not there to begin with. How can core values help you avoid these situations? Here at Salesforce we know that if we frame our work in the context of our values and use those values to drive our decision making, we’ll always make the right decision. And when we do make a wrong decision, we usually find that it’s because we weren’t aligned with our core values. North Star, indeed. Evolve your values over time.Just because you’ve thrown those values on your website doesn’t mean they have to stay there forever. Organizations, products, and people all change. If your current values aren’t tied to the vision, everything suffers — innovation slows, employees become disenchanted, and customers attrit. Something needs to change.So take time every year to think about the status of your company. What’s driving it? What could it be doing better? Where do you want it to go? If you had to choose your core values from scratch right now, would they be the same as the originals? As your small business grows, this is a great exercise to make sure you stay aligned and moving forward.Ready, get set, grow. Competition today is fierce and small businesses must try to differentiate themselves in whatever ways they can. When products are the same or similar, a consumer’s decision is based on what kind of company he or she wants to support. So take some time to think about the values that are important to you. Write them down and shout them out. Make sure they radiate throughout the company. Breathe them in deeply and they will help you grow.What values are important to your company? What’s a small business you know of that truly lives its values? I’d love to know. Tweet me at @mlaxros and let’s discuss.last_img read more

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BYOD Is More than a Trend: Here’s How to Encourage It While Still Keeping Your Network Safe

first_imgHoala Greevy is founder and CEO of Paubox, the leading provider of HIPAA-compliant email. Paubox’s end-to-end email encryption works on any device without requiring additional apps, plugins, or logins. The trend of bringing your own device (BYOD) to work in healthcare is based on efficiency. Being able to communicate on devices they’re familiar with can help doctors, nurses, and care teams respond faster, which translates into better experiences for patients.In fact, it’s widespread enough that calling BYOD a trend might not be accurate anymore. Just last year, a Spok survey found that 71 percent of healthcare organizations allow staff members to bring and use their own devices at work. In addition, 63 percent of doctors and 41 percent of nurses say they use their personal devices even without permission.With or without approval, BYOD is growing, so there should be strict regulations and policies guiding it. People are only human, and humans are prone to make mistakes. While you can’t always avoid these mistakes, you can remove the ways in which they could affect your organization’s overall security.Regulating BYOD PoliciesIt’s unrealistic to expect everyone within your organization to stop using their own devices. It’s just as unrealistic to foot the cost of buying and managing devices for every single employee (especially if your organization is larger). However, the productivity and efficiency gains that come with a mobile workforce are undeniable.For many employees, simply being mobile can increase productivity by up to 34 percent, according to a Samsung-sponsored Frost & Sullivan survey. In another study, well-implemented BYOD policies have accounted for average company savings of up to $350 per employee per year.Despite these advantages, protecting data has always been a cornerstone of healthcare privacy and security regulations. That task is almost infinitely more challenging when everyone uses their own devices. In multiple attempts to meet that challenge, 34 different state legislatures have passed a total of 63 bills designed to rein in the risks of mobilized healthcare.A majority of the bills help define what telemedicine and telehealth entail, as well as standards to decide when either is appropriate. For example, in Arkansas, legislation now dictates that children in school can only receive telehealth services from their primary care physicians or from directly authorized clinicians.Such legislation may or may not prove beneficial to healthcare security in the long run, but it highlights an important point: The issue isn’t really about whether you should allow BYOD; it’s about how you can make personal devices as secure as your organization’s network. The answer starts with these three tips:1. Group employees into roles, and then define their access.First, set rules around how much access employees need according to their defined roles. You can more easily manage access using role-based guidelines rather than defining access for each individual employee. This also helps eliminate instances in which employees inadvertently create vulnerabilities and increase their organization’s risk of an internal breach.For example, well-intentioned gestures such as sharing passwords with co-workers so they can access health records could be controlled by restricting access according to roles. In a University of Phoenix College of Health Professions survey, 59 percent of nurses and 60 percent of administrators point to role-based access as one of the most effective ways to protect patient data.2. Don’t allow devices that can’t be properly secured.Along with insider breaches, hacking and IT incidents made up 37 percent of all healthcare data breaches in 2017. Most of these didn’t occur because of employee error; they occurred because of a failure to properly secure every device within the network. Therefore, the next step is to secure an employee’s device by ensuring it’s encrypted and locked.A security PIN might be adequate, but biometric access such as fingerprint, face, or iris scanners can provide a much higher level of security. It’s harder to mimic biometrics than it is to guess a PIN, so any localized data will be better protected if the device is lost or stolen. This will require limiting devices to models that can support higher security measures.3. Keep data off devices by using agentless software.Most modern smartphones and personal devices come with a variety of biometric locks to safeguard the data they store. Yet you can guarantee that certain data is safe if a device is stolen by keeping data off the device in the first place. Agentless software allows a device to access programs and files without having to store them locally.No matter what device accesses the data, it remains secure in the cloud or, in rare cases, within the organization’s server. IT security administrators can control access from within the organization, including restricting access for compromised devices. Organizations can rest easier knowing their data is safe, and employees don’t have to install intrusive software onto their devices.4. If an app needs an agent, containerize it.Some applications and programs need to be installed to be used, making an agentless approach impossible. For such applications, containerization is often the next best strategy. Containerization allows a device’s operating system to virtually isolate work-related apps from personal ones.The contained apps cannot communicate with any other files or libraries on the operating system, so they can’t read any of the employee’s personal data. Likewise, employees can only use the device to access contained apps while within the organization’s network. Outside of work, containerization keeps the work-related data safely inaccessible.5. Force encryption in every application that allows it.So far, you’ve taken steps to ensure an employee’s personal device is as secure as it can be. However, human behavior and choices create variables where there should be none when it comes to securing your organization’s network. Use software and applications that allow you to automatically implement certain security measures so users don’t have to remember or guess.For example, emails sent from within the organization can be forcibly encrypted whether or not the employee chooses encryption. Certain apps can demand biometric or PIN access even if the employee didn’t sign out properly after using it the last time. Wherever possible, make encryption and security automatic to eliminate the variables of human error.6. Keep staff members updated by pushing reminders to their devices.It might go without saying, but any good BYOD policy must be updated constantly to keep up with ever-advancing technology. Sound policies are essential, but few people remember the employee handbooks they’re asked to read on their first day. Likewise, BYOD policies will be easily forgotten without routine reminders.You can also keep security fresh in employees’ minds by pushing updates and reminders through text and email. Routinely evaluate employees’ devices to ensure security measures are still functioning properly. Also, implement a process to make it easier for employees to add and remove new devices to avoid any security hiccups whenever they upgrade.BYOD policies can seem like a huge challenge, but there are a plethora of tech options available that can help your organization regulate yours. Instead of leaving security up to device owners and opening up more holes into your network, limit the risk of a breach by letting technology secure your data as much as possible. FDA Extends Collaboration on Living Heart Proje… 8 Unusual Ideas for a Dentistry Business Related Posts How Myia Health’s Partnership with Mercy Virtua… Hoala GreevyFounder and CEO of Paubox Tags:#BYOD#Healthcare Can IoT Bridge The Gaps In Modern Mental Health…last_img read more

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Tips for Renting: What Tenants Need to Do

first_imgBy Barbara O’Neill, Ph.D., CFP®, Rutgers Cooperative Extension, boneill@njaes.rutgers.eduDue to the frequent moves required of service members, many choose rental housing instead of buying a house. Compared to homeownership, renting offers the following advantages: lower costs in many areas, easy to move as job requirements, income, or family needs change, fewer responsibilities for maintenance, and minimal financial commitment (typically just a security deposit). Disadvantages of renting include no tax write-offs, limitations regarding remodeling, potential rent increases, and various restrictions (e.g., pets and subletting).  Return to article. Long DescriptionRegardless of the disadvantages of renting, mobility needs often make renting a home, condo, or apartment the preferred living arrangement of service members. Below are seven things that tenants should do:Identify What You Want- Identify essential “must have” features before searching for rental housing. Examples of “deal breakers” include: number of bedrooms, safe area, quiet area, convenient public transportation, utility costs included in rent or low utility costs if not, low security deposit, appliances included in a rental unit, privacy, local schools for children, and parking availability.Calculate What You Can Afford- Determine a price range into which rent and other housing costs (e.g., utilities) can fit. Ideally, monthly housing costs (e.g., rent, utilities, and renter’s insurance) should not exceed 25% to 30% of monthly take-home pay. However, this is difficult in many high-cost areas. The decision of how much to spend on rent will affect how much to spend for food, entertainment, travel, etc.Investigate Rental Resources- Seek resources to help make rent payments. If personal or family income falls within eligibility guidelines, rental assistance payments or subsidized housing units may be available. Another financial resource, for single renters, is to share rental expenses with a roommate.Document Pre-Rental Move-In Conditions– Housing experts recommend examining rental housing thoroughly and carefully with a landlord or rental agent. Take photographs at that time and save them in case you have difficulty getting your security deposit back. Some apartment complexes have checklists to document move-in conditions that both the landlord and tenant sign at the beginning and end of a lease.Know Your Lease– Understand key lease terms including the identity of the tenant and landlord, the amount and due date for rent payments, length of the lease (start and end dates), amount of security deposit required (e.g., 1 or 2 month’s rent), and whether pets or minor children are allowed. Also note the ability to sublet all or part of the lease to another tenant, parking availability, and whether or not utilities are included in monthly rent payments. Before signing a lease, determine if negotiation on certain provisions is possible.Meet Your Lease Obligations– Pay rent in full and on time and keep the premises clean and safe. Insure that your family, friends, and pets do not damage the property or disturb other tenants. Notify the landlord about needed repairs in writing, except in emergency situations, and maintain a business-like relationship. Comply with local building code regulations and housing codes and move out at the end of the lease term.Purchase Renter’s Insurance- Purchase renter’s insurance before moving into rental housing to cover personal property in the event of theft, a fire, water damage, and other named perils. Renter’s insurance also includes liability coverage to provide protection against lawsuits by guests who are injured within the walls of your rental unit and “additional living expenses” costs, like hotel bills and additional food costs, if the rental property is damaged and uninhabitable. The cost of a policy will depend on the location and type of structure of the rental unit, the value of personal property, and the amount of coverage provided.For additional information about renting, review the North Carolina State University Extension publication Choosing to Rent a Home For Your Family. Photo by mastersenaiper via Pixabay.com, CC0. https://pixabay.com/en/key-home-house-estate-business-2323278/last_img read more

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Workspaces in Premiere Pro

first_imgPremiere Pro comes loaded with additional workspaces which can easily be accessed, modified and saved to customize your video editing layout  In this post we’ll look at how to find, change and save these workspaces quickly and simply.Adobe Premiere Pro has unique workspace layouts for color correction, working with audio, video editing, logging clips and applying effects. Utilize these layouts to speed up your post production workflow and access unique toolsets…or create your own custom layout.  Let’s jump in.Premiere Pro CS6 Default LayoutAbove is the default layout for Premiere Pro.  This is suitable for a variety of video editing tasks, but it’s not optimal for any specialized task like color correction or audio mixing.  For standard video editing this will likely be your layout of choice.Should you ever rearrange this layout and want to go quickly go back to it’s default state go to Window > Workspace > Reset Current Workspace:Resetting the WorkspaceThere’s many ways to move and resize the panels in your Adobe Premiere Pro workspace.  First, you can click and drag between panels to resize them:Icon Between PanelsYou can also move several panels at the same.  Hover over their adjacent corners and this icon will appear:Icon for Moving Multiple PanelsIt is also possible to move panels around to different locations on your display by using the little dotted area to the side of the panel’s name:Dotted Area to Move a PanelWhen you click and hold on this dotted area to the left of the panel name and move that panel to another part of your work area you will get something that looks like this:Drop ZoneIn Adobe Premiere Pro this is called a ‘drop zone’.  If you look at the image above you will see the screen divided into quadrants   Each of these areas will turn a lavender color when you click and hold the dotted area in a panel and then drag the mouse over each of these drop zones.If you drop the panel in the middle zone (as shown in the image above) the panel will become an additional tab in Premiere Pro.  This is what is called a ‘frame’ (a series of tabbed panels).However, if you drop it to one of the sides:Side Drop ZoneYou will create a brand new frame in this area with only one panel in it.New Frame to the Side of the Original FrameSo, not only can you resize any panel to any size you wish, you can also move panels simply by selecting where to drop them.Floating Panels in Premiere ProYou can also float panels, which can be a really great option if you have a two (or more) screen setup.Floating WindowTo do this, simply grab hold of the dotted area to the left of the panel name (just as you would if you wanted to move it to another location).  Then hold the CONTROL key on a PC or the COMMAND key on a Mac and the window will float.Just make sure you let go of the mouse before you let go of the COMMAND/CONTROL key!Saving Workspaces in Adobe Premiere ProAs you move and resize panels in Adobe Premiere Pro, you may end up with a layout that makes sense for your video editing workflow.  In Premiere you can save a workspace so that you can quickly get back to it again whenever you need it (great when working on a shared editing computer).Simply go to Window > Workspace > New Workspace.Then in the dialogue box that pops up, give it a name that means something to you.New WorkspaceNew Workspace NameDeleting Workspaces in Premiere ProDeleting a workspace in Premiere Pro is quite simple.Delete Workspace The only problem you may have is that when you try to delete a workspace you may not see the workspace come up as an option in the dialogue to delete workspaces!  This is simply because you cannot delete a workspace you are presently using. So if this is the case, cancel out from the delete option and simply choose any other workspace you want and then go back to Window > Workspace > Delete Workspace.  You will find the other workspace is now one of the options available and you can select and delete it.Use Specialized Workspaces in PremiereLastly, it is worth saying that you should really get accustomed to using the various workspaces that Adobe have provided for you in Premiere Pro. As you can see from the list:Workspaces AvailableThese workspaces are designed to put the tools you need front and center for completing common post production tasks!  Experiment with the different Premiere Pro layouts, tweaking them to fit your needs.  Then save them and make them your own!last_img read more

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The V-Control UFC-1S: Focus Pulling from a USB Remote

first_imgAdjust your focus without changing the lens or buying an expensive follow focus with Aputure’s V-Control.The photography/videography equipment company Aputure are known for their inexpensive yet durable equipment. We’ve already seen some pretty cool accessories such as the VS-1 and VS-3 field monitors come out of Aputure but one relatively new product caught our eye, the V-Control UFC-1s.The V-ControlThe V-Control UFC-1S is a USB focus puller that allows filmmakers and videographers to pull focus without having to touch the lens. At the center of the V-control is a big wheel which allows users to change focus at varying degrees of speed. The wheel also allows users to program up to 4 different focus points so in a single shot users can automatically change focus without having to touch the lens. This sounds particularly helpful for shots with multiple subjects and focus points. However, The V-control does not work with the lenses that do not have an auto-focus feature.The remote also allows users to start and stop their camera without having to touch the camera. On-camera settings, including ISO, Aperture, shutter speed, and exposure compensation, can all be adjusted using the V-Control as well. Various other features including focus step and rate adjustment make the V-Control very customizable. Speaking of customization, the V-Control can be mounted to a tripod, crane or shoulder rigs.V-Controller ReviewThe following video from Caleb Pike at DSLR Video Shooter shows us a great review of the V-control.A few of Caleb’s cons were that the controller didn’t focus well at long distances and that it was a little bulky.Pricing and AvailabilityYou can buy a V-Control today from Aputure’s retailer Aliexpress for $199 or you can probably pick one up for a little cheaper on eBay.What do you think of the V-Control? Have you used one? Share in the comments below.last_img read more

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5 Tips for Jewelry Photography

first_imgFollow these tips to improve your product photography.It may seem like shooting product photography is a lot easier than shooting portrait photography, but that isn’t always the case. Lighting and posing jewelry has it’s own inherent challenges…with all the angles of the stones and reflections it can be very frustrating to get the perfect shot. So if you have a jewelry shoot coming up, check out the 5 tips below from Nikon, for getting the perfect shots.1. Find a White TableThis Ikea table top is only $5White tables make great product photography staging areas. If you don’t have enough room for a seamless white backdrop, or if you are simply shooting some quick product photography, than a white table is the way to go. If you don’t have a white table you could always use white poster board.2. Use a WindowNatural light from windows can be a photographer’s best friend. Sometimes a window is the only lighting you need (don’t overcomplicate things!). If you use different curtains you can change it from a soft light to a more harsh light, depending on your needs.3. Shoot Different AnglesWith a ton of different reflection areas, jewelry can be very unpredictable. Try taking shots form different angles to see what works and what doesn’t.4. Reflect LightIf having a single lighting source isn’t enough, try bouncing light with a reflector. Reflectors are cheap you can pick them up at any photo store or online.5. Phone LightsI can’t tell you how many times i’ve had to use an iPhone light to provide a quick splash of light to an image. In fact, I do it so much I’ve bought an extra battery so my phone light will last longer. Obviously using an iPhone light isn’t ideal, but if you’re looking for just a little more shine a phone light is a quick fix.There you have it – 5 quick tips for shooting jewelry photography which came from the following video from Nikon:This video was first shared by Nikon Europe’s YouTube channel. Thanks for sharing!Have any other tips for shooting jewelry? Share in the comments below.last_img read more

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Cinematography Tip: Working with Motivated Camera Movement

first_imgMotivated camera movement helps narrate your film visually. Here are a few examples you can put into action in your own work.On the surface, camera movement appears to just be a technique to make a shot more interesting and keep the audience engaged. When the movement is done well, it can increase the audience’s opinion of your production value. Sometimes, camera movement is necessary to keep up the film’s pace. If suddenly there’s a bunch of action taking place and people running around but the camera is locked down, it tends to slow everything down.But there’s an important factor to keep in mind when planning your shots, blocking, and camera movement: the camera is the film’s silent narrator. You can use movement to guide the audience through the scene, slowly revealing certain people or objects in order to create suspense — or simply control the pacing of the scene.Broadly speaking, camera movement, like the narration of a book, can fall into three categories:Point-of-view/first-personMotivated camera movement/third-person (limited)Unmotivated camera movement/third-person (omniscient)Let’s dive a bit deeper into motivated camera movement. This is movement that the actions on screen dictate. We are literally following the action, whereas unmotivated camera movement means the camera essentially moves freely, detached from any specific action. Keep in mind that motivated camera movement can be as simple as tilting or panning to follow a character walking across the room — or lowering his hand under a table during a shady deal — but you can use it for more than that.The lens is the storyteller. Think about why the camera is moving in the first place. Spielberg is known for a lot of oners, and using motivated camera movement is a reminder that just because we’re following movement doesn’t mean that we’re limited as storytellers. In Raiders of the Lost Ark, we get an excellent example of this during Marion’s introduction.In this one shot, we go through several movements. The movement mimics our own entry into the bar, as if we are a customer coming upon the riotous drinking game. The second movement focuses on the two characters involved in the game. We follow their facial expressions and hand movements. (These close-ups allow us to feel what the characters are going through.) As we follow their hands, we see the focused standoff between Marion and her drinking partner, and even though Marion plays up how drunk she is, her handling of the class (which the camera movement focuses on) clues us in that she has the upper hand in the game — compared to her opponent’s sloppy lack of gross motor control.Motivated camera movement should logically follow the blocking. Gareth Evans uses this idea wonderfully in The Raid: Redemption.Nearly every camera move in this scene follows a fist, a kick, or a blade, which yields a powerful and amped-up “narration” of this fight scene. Paul Greengrass, director of the Jason Bourne sequels and one of the architects of the shaky cam trend, might have simply added superfluous and nauseating camera shake to this scene to try and amp up the action. However, through strong motivated camera movements, Evans adds incredible kinetic energy while maintaining clear visual narration.Unless the camera is a character’s POV, it should not have sway over the blocking of the characters. The camera should either follow the blocking or provide an independent, third-person perspective. If the camera alone dictates the blocking, the scene will feel unnatural. Don’t move the characters aimlessly around a room as an excuse to use fancy camera movements. Cover image via Paramount Pictures.Looking for more articles on cinematography? Check these out.Video Gear: Is the Fuji X-T3 a Viable Option for Filmmakers?The Most Exciting Camera Rumors of 2019New Filmmaker Tips For Using The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4kThe Cinematic Power of Hitchcock’s Dolly Zoom TechniqueHands-On Review: The Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4Klast_img read more

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“Watchmen” and The Art of Creating Nonlinear Stories

first_imgTaking lessons from Watchmen and other nonlinear classics, we deconstruct how you can harness the nonlinear style for your film projects.Long before the 2019 hit show on HBO — or the Zack Snyder faithful big screen adaptation in 2009 — the idea for Watchmen came to writer Alan Moore as a way to repurpose old comics to reflect Cold War anxieties and deconstruct the superhero concept in the original graphic novel series in 1986-1987.In interviews, Moore has cited the experimental author William S. Burroughs for his use of the nonlinear technique as a way to juxtapose different themes, characters, and storylines. Of Burroughs, Moore says, “He suggested rearranging words and images to evade rational analysis, allowing subliminal hints of the future to leak through.”The nonlinear style has since appeared in both film and television adaptations of Watchmen — it’s also a popular storytelling device for filmmakers like Christopher Nolan, David Fincher, and Quentin Tarantino. And while it may be tricky to get your head around at times, when done properly, it can be a powerful storytelling and filmmaking device for your short film, feature film, or video projects.Here’s how to master the nonlinear storytelling technique for your film and video projects.A Tight Script and OutlineBurroughs’s nonlinear “cut-up technique” remains a technique for modern filmmakers. (Image via Blaise.)In Burroughs’s “cut-up technique,” the writer takes a finished story; cuts out pages, paragraphs, or sentences; then tosses everything on the ground as a way to randomly reorder the scenes and narrative.But before you can start making your story into a nonlinear narrative, you need to treat it as a linear one. When done well, nonlinear can be a great device, but more often than not, it comes off as a way to hide a bad script.You should only turn your great idea into a nonlinear one after you’ve put in the work, gotten your feedback, done your hard rewrites, and created a story that you know can stand on its own. From there, take a solid outline and rearrange certain elements for thematic purposes.The Script Supervisor and ContinuityEternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is a great example of a nonlinear, sci-fi love story. (Image via Focus Features).If you’re unfamiliar with a script supervisor’s role is, read up on the ins and outs of why you need one. A script supervisor helps not only during pre-production but also on set, making sure everything from lines of dialogue to blocking to hair and makeup stays consistent.When introducing nonlinear plot devices to your film, it becomes that much more difficult to keep your head on straight. Even if you don’t have the biggest budget or resources for a dedicated script supervisor, having others watching continuity is crucial.If you want great results like the nonlinear sci-fi love story Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, every piece of your meticulously crafted sets and characters need to be consistent, even when traveling across time and between dreamscapes.Consistency of People, Places, and ThemesTarantino’s nonlinear technique in the early ’90s contributed to its popularity. (Image from Pulp Fiction — via Miramax.)By the 1990s, the nonlinear timeline and narrative technique was becoming popular among many filmmakers. No one auteur seemed to master this technique better than Quentin Tarantino with 1994’s feature Pulp Fiction. While this post-modern film employs a very unconventional structure, rife with homage and self-reflexivity, it also strives for a remarkable sense of consistency across the people, places, and themes.All the different narratives feel like they’re connected, and in many ways, they are. This is intentional, and it helps that the director is the same person who came up with the idea and penned the script. A complete understanding of the narrative world is essential for the nonlinear device to really feel consistent — like it’s telling a story much bigger than a normal, linear one.Filming Chronologically vs. Non-chronologicallyNolan’s nonlinear technique implements chronological order in a non-traditional manner. (Image from Memento — via New Market Films.)An interesting question many nonlinear filmmakers have to face is the issue of shooting chronologically or not. Traditionally, most films do not get shot in order or scene by scene, simply out of necessity. However, occasionally some directors will try to work this way to help their actors give better performances. With nonlinear projects, though, the question of chronological production becomes a bit trickier.For films like Christopher Nolan’s Memento, which uses a nonlinear technique that basically tells the story backwards, the idea of filming chronologically actually makes a bit more sense. It really comes down to your story and how much time you want to balance between recreating scenes you’ve already shot, or are able to shoot, in the necessary order.Don’t Lose Sight of the Beginning or the EndIn Arrival, the nonlinear time frame is essential to the storyline. (Image via Paramount.)Finally, taking the 2016 sci-fi thriller Arrival as an example, it’s important to never lose sight of the beginning or end of your nonlinear film project. Like any linear project, a film is a journey from point A to point B (with many complications in-between). However, for nonlinear narratives, those points can quickly become confused. Or, in the case of Arrival, they’re actually the same place.Yet, if the goal is to tell the story of the journey, clearly defining those two points — not just for the narrative, but for your individual characters and their arcs — will help you stay on track, even with the many theoretical challenges of telling a story out of order.Cover image from Watchmen (via HBO).For more filmmaking techniques and advice, check out some of these articles below.A Practical Guide to Dutch Angles and Tilted FramingAdobe Offers Look into the Editing of “Terminator: Dark Fate”The Ad Astra Editing Team On Creating “Quiet Intensity” in the EditHow Hollywood Gets the “Film Look” Using Digital CamerasFilmmaking Lessons from the Making of the Sci-Fi Horror Classic “Alien”last_img read more

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The Leader’s Guide to Monday Morning

first_imgIt’s Monday morning. How do you know you are going to make progress this week? Here are four action items that will ensure you start your week with activities that will move things forward.1. Reiterate the MessageYou might be tempted to believe that you need to change your message. You might think that you need to continually come up with something new, but you don’t. Changing the message only confuses people as to what is really important. When your message provides the vision, the mission, and the meaning you need to continually reiterate that message.Change the stories. Change the words. But stay on message.2. Share Successes WidelyFind examples of people living the values in your mission. Find examples of where what you are doing creates meaning, where it’s bigger than just “the job.” Find the success stories and share them widely so that everyone understands what great looks like. This is how you help them find meaning in their work, and it’s how you inspire them with the confidence to be proactive in making a difference.Share successes. Praise people publicly. Provide examples of people who have found meaning in what they do.3. Verify Progress ContinuesIf you want your initiatives to stick, you have to verify that progress is being made. Talk to the leaders in your organization to make sure that they are moving things forward, that they have what they need, and remind them that you are there to provide the support and resources they need.When you lose interest in verifying that progress is being made, others will follow you down the path of apathy.4. Troubleshoot IssuesIf you want to know where the trouble spots are in moving your organization forward, talk to the people responsible for the day-to-day operations. Ask them to describe the challenges they face. Ask them what they would need to change to produce better results. First, work to understand their issues and challenges, and then work to give them the help they need.If you want to know where the roadblocks and bottlenecks are, go and see for yourself. You’ll quickly find the issues. Next week, make sure something has been done.QuestionsAre you always on message? Do you move from idea to idea without getting your priorities over the line?How many success stories are you prepared to share this week? Where are people getting it right?Are you verifying that progress is being made and proving your commitment to your vision?Where are the trouble spots? Have you seen them yourself? What are you waiting for?last_img read more

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My Top Ten Posts in 2014

first_imgMichael Hyatt just posted a list of the top viewed posts on his site in 2014. For the reasons he outlines in his post, it’s worth copping that riff. Here are my top posts by views in 2014.These first two links here are not posts or part of the top ten. But it’s worth thinking about how people find you and what they see when they get there.Home Page: The most viewed page on my site in 2014 was my home page, and by a wide margin. It received 10 times the views of any other page.Anthony: The second most viewed page on my site is my About page. There is a lesson here if you are a content marketer. We spend a lot of time developing compelling content and too little on the page that does a lot of work for us.These posts weren’t all written in 2014. They were viewed the most in 2014. If there is any lesson for content marketers or sales people or organizations, the dates these posts were written offers a lesson worth learning and acting on.Asking Your Clients to Pay Up (August 12, 2012): This page has almost any many views as my About page. It shows up in search results every week. And this is one of the keys to content marketing: answer the questions your audience (or prospects) are asking. Apparently, people need a lot of help collecting from some of their clients.How to Be Interesting and Useful to C-Level Executives (August 14, 2011): This post is about understanding how you create value, proving you are accountable for outcomes, and having the requisite business acumen to see your dream client’s business through their eyes (or giving them a new view).The Three Levels of Sales Skills (September 5, 2014): This is the first post from 2014 to show up on this list. Here I outlined the three levels of skills you need to succeed in sales today. It was popular on LinkedIn and Twitter, like a lot of list-based content.The Best Questions for Your Needs Analysis (February 23, 2013): This post is really a list of outcomes you need from a discovery sales call broken down into Who, What, Why, How, and When questions. It’s a great starting point for developing a list of questions you can use to improve the value you create for your dream clients in early sales calls.What Hustlers Don’t Do (May 3, 2014): I started writing The Hustler’s Playbook for my three children. I didn’t start with the intention of turning it into a series of posts. But after I’d written a half a dozen, I decided to share them. This is a giant list of things successful people do not do.7 Ways to Improve Your Business Acumen for Sales (March 5, 2010): Very soon this post will be five years old. It still receives a lot of views because, like Asking Your Clients to Pay Up, it shows up in a lot of searches. There is nothing on this list that isn’t as important today as it was five years ago. In fact, the recipe is even more important now.How to Say Thank You After Your Big Sales Presentation (September 10, 2010): This post is about reinforcing the value you create, responding to questions in writing, and asking again for the business (you did ask for the business, didn’t you).7 Ways to Be Better at Prospecting (March 4, 2010): This post is a massive 1,300 words, despite the content marketing world’s best advice that a post should be 350 to 500 words.Ten Mistakes That Kill Sales Opportunities (January 22, 2014): Another list-based post. And a damn fine checklist to review again and again. This is evergreen content for those of us in B2B sales.The Hustler’s Playbook: A 10-Step Guide to Hustling (December 20, 2014): How can a guide to hustling not do well? This post is only a few days old, but it’s already found it’s way into the top ten posts of 2014. Good title for a good list drives traffic.I don’t pay too much attention to search engine optimization or keywords. But it’s always worth taking the time to study how well what you are doing is working for you and what creates value for the people you serve.last_img read more

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Naxalbari, the Bengal village where 50 years of a movement is celebrated

first_imgPosters, leaflets, graffiti — Naxalbari, a nondescript village in north Bengal, is gearing up to celebrate 50 years of a movement, a peasants’ uprising, that inspired other resistance movements in the country.What happenedOn May 25, 1967, the police opened fire on a farmers’ rally at the tiny hamlet of Prasadujyot in Naxalbari, triggering an armed revolt. Eleven persons, including two children, were killed. Trouble had been brewing from a day earlier when the police entered the village to break a farmers’ protest. In the commotion that followed, a farmer shot an arrow, killing a police officer. Then Home Minister Jyoti Basu ordered police action. The next day, under a giant banyan tree in Prasadujyot, not far from where BJP president Amit Shah recently shared a controversial meal with a tribal family, the police opened fire on a peaceful demonstration. As news of the police firing spread, the peasants, armed with bows and arrows, launched a spontaneous agitation culminating in a full-scale armed struggle.What did the protest mean?The peasants refused to hand over the majority of the farm produce to landowners; they not only seized the crop and distributed it but also acquired land by sticking red flags. The movement may have been put down by the administration, but it inspired other movements against wrongs and injustice and forced the government to improve the lot of the agricultural labourers and poor peasants. The Naxalbari movement split the Communist Party, with the Maoist factions teaming up to launch an armed struggle to overthrow landowners and the State. While the movement could not achieve what it intended to do — a democratic revolution — a process to democratise society was initiated. As a result, caste exploitation and economic coercion reduced. Why did it fail?Naxalbari failed primarily because the ideologue, Charu Majumdar, was rigid in his view that only a military line would help the peasants achieve their goals, refusing to adopt the politics of mass lines. However, the movement that was begun by peasants, landless agricultural workers, Dalits, tribals and Nepalis — and attracted the Bengali upper class — was given a theoretical grounding by Charu Majumdar, who later launched the CPI-ML in 1969. On the ground, the movement was led by Jangal Santhal, Kanu Sanyal, Khokon Majumdar, Nimu Singh and Mujibur Rehman to name a few. Women leaders Galeswari Debi, Sabitri Das, Krishnamaya Surgeon and Shanti Munda played a major role too. The movement ended within a few years of the death of Charu Majumdar in police custody in 1972. But Naxalbari merged in spirit with the peasant struggles in Bihar and Telangana in the 1980s and 1990s. In districts in south Chhattisgarh, the military movement has survived till date much on Majumdar’s lines, perhaps the reason Naxalbari Day is still celebrated in the forests of Bastar. Security forces are told to be on high alert on May 25 every year. What is the situation today?Nothing much has changed in Naxalbari. It’s still a one-road village. The biggest recent story — Amit Shah launching the expansion of the BJP in West Bengal at Naxalbari — is on its walls. The rest of the walls are taken up by various Naxalite parties with slogans and graffiti to celebrate Naxalbari Day.Party members are a busy lot. Gaur Baidya, a leader of the CPI Marxist-Leninist-Red Star, supervises what has to be written on the walls. Abhijit Majumdar, a top CPI-ML (Liberation) leader and son of Charu Majumdar, campaigns round the clock, asking people to join in the celebrations. The offices of the various CPI-ML factions are abuzz with members distributing leaflets, setting up social media platforms, painting posters in an effort to re-engage the peasants and the working class with the anniversary celebration. Scholars, civil society groups and activists from across the country are expected to participate in the event, alongside the families of those who died in the uprising. Suvojit Bagchilast_img read more

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34 Maoists held in Sukma

first_imgNAGPUR: The Chhattisgarh police on Sunday claimed to have arrested 34 Maoists from Sukma district of Chhattisgarh.“The district police and the DRG [District Reserve Guard] arrested 31 Maoists from Chintagufa police station limits, and the Special Task Force and the DRG have arrested three Maoists from Fulbagadi area [of Sukma] today. The arrested people include the Janatana Sarkar presidents [of CPI (Maoist)], Jan Militia commanders, DKMS presidents and members, CNM [Chetna Natya Manch] commanders and deputy Commanders,” said a press note issued by the Sukma district police.The police said all the arrested people were active as members of the outlawed CPI (Maoist). “They were involved in the execution of many violent incidents by the Maoists, including the recent Burkapal attack. All of them were produced before a court today,” the statement added.The Maoist attack near Burkapal village of Sukma in April this year had resulted in the death of 25 CRPF men. Most of the alleged Maoists arrested on Sunday are the residents of Burkapal.The CRPF men had said there was firing from inside the village during the attack on April 24. Villagers had denied any role in the attack, saying that they had all had gone out of the village to celebrate Bija Pondum.last_img read more

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2 students killed in accident, 10 policemen injured by mob

first_imgTwo girl students were killed on their way to write their secondary examination in West Bengal’s Nadia district on Monday when a bus hit the scooter they were travelling on. The accident triggered a mob fury in which 10 policemen were injured.The police said the incident took place at Debagram and a man too was injured in it. Nadia Superintendent of Police Santosh Pandey said the mob blocked the road after the accident and attacked policemen, injuring 10 of them. He said the two girls hailing from Mirzapur village were on their way to their Class X examination centre with a male relative on a scooter when the bus hit their vehicle. Both the girls came under the wheels of the bus and died on the spot. The SP said seven persons have been arrested for throwing stones at the policemen. “We have arrested the bus driver and seized the bus,” he added.last_img read more

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Giving young children a voice

first_imgPanaji: Nearly 12 years after a local non-governmental organisation initiated the process, the Goa Directorate of Panchayats has indicated the possibility of holding Bal Gram Sabhas for children in the State. The sabhas are one of the platforms available to children in their villages or in schools to voice their grievances. The Directorate has also planned to hold Special Gram Sabhas in village panchayats.The NGO Children’s Rights in Goa (CRG) has welcomed the decision. Sushma M. Pawar, public relations in-charge, CRG, said in 2006, as per the mandate of the Goa Children’s Act 2003, CRG had initiated the process of setting up Village Child Committees (VCCs), Bal Sabhas and Bal Panchayats in Arambol. On September 22, 2006, the first VCC was set up at the panchayat in Arambol, Pernem taluk of North Goa where students from schools in and around the area participated.Subsequently, CRG facilitated the process of bal sabhas and bal panchayats in other villages and in 2014, reached out to 1,295 children in 20 schools across the State. Goa is the first in the country to have a special child rights legislation and a children’s court.On February 10, 2015, CRG collaborated with the Directorate of Women and Child Development to organise a bal panchayat training programme titled ‘Amche Vichar, Amcho Fudar’ (Our views, our future). Nearly 67 children from six villages of Pernem and Bardez taluka participated.Sarita Santamaria, case coordinator, CRG, said in 2014, the Directorate of Women and Child Development (DWCD), Goa, had introduced The Goa Village and Municipal Child Committee Grants and awards Scheme 2014 for recognising the functioning of the VCCs. Accordingly, VCCs that have been carrying on their work satisfactorily are eligible for an annual grant of ₹10,000 towards administrative expenses. The DWCD also gives an annual award of ₹10,000 to the best performing village and municipal child committee in each taluka.The monetary schemes were instrumental in encouraging village panchayats to reach out to children.The CRG has now expressed the need for the convergence between the Directorate of Panchayat and DWCD to prevent duplication of effort.last_img read more

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Visva Bharati officiating V-C at the centre of controversy

first_imgThe decision of the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) to let a senior faculty member of the Visva Bharati University (VBU) – Professor Sabujkali Sen – continue as the officiating Vice-Chancellor even after the expiry of her term has generated controversy in the university, founded by Rabindranath Tagore in 1921.The complainants – who are attached to University’s executive council – claimed that the MHRD’s decision to allow Prof. Sen to continue was an outcome of a “forged minute” of an executive council meeting. Denying the allegation, Prof. Sen told The Hindu she was functioning as officiating V-C as per the instructions of the ministry.The problem began when the MHRD wrote to the University’s acting registrar, Sougata Chattopadhyay, on March 5, asking him to take “appropriate action” to ensure that Prof. Sen continued as the officiating V-C even after her term as Director of Studies, Educational Innovation and Rural Reconstruction (SEI and RR) of the university – and hence as a member of the executive council – expired on February 24.Prof. Sen became the officiating V-C because she was a member of the council and by virtue of her position as Director of SEI and RR. It was done as per clause 3 (6) of the Statutes of the University. According to the Statutes, in case the pro-VC is not available, the senior most director will become the officiating V-C till a regular V-C assumes office. It further states that if none of the directors are available then the senior most adhyaksha (dean) of a Bhavana who is also a council member will become officiating V-C.The President’s nominee in the council, Sushovan Banerjee, who chaired the council meeting on February 17, said that the agenda no. 2 of the meeting comprised a proposal of extending Prof. Sen’s tenure as the Director of the SEI and RR but it was turned down by the council.“There is no provision in the Visva-Bharati Act, 1951 and Statutes to extend the tenure of any director. There is a provision that in the absence of the V-C the senior most Adhyaksha of Bhavanas, who is also a council member, will take charge. If he or she retires or quits then the senior most principal will take charge as officiating V-C,” Dr. Banerjee told The Hindu.He further alleged that in the minutes of the meeting circulated to the council members on March 19, agenda no. 2 was replaced with another item. Dr. Banerjee has written to President Ram Nath Kovind about the issue.“To our utter surprise Prof. Sabujkoli Sen prepared a forged minute on agenda item 2, though a draft, which contains full of lies and the minute was approved by her before getting our approval,” Dr. Banerjee stated in his letter to President dated April 2, 2018.Denies allegation Prof. Sen said: “Agenda no. 2 of the council meeting was not replaced by any other agenda. The allegations raised by him (Sushovan Banerjee) are not true. I think he has not been able to understand the issue properly. I am functioning as officiating VC as per instructions of MHRD. I have nothing else to say on the matter.”last_img read more

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Punjab government moves towards fixing sand price

first_imgPunjab Local Government Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu on Monday submitted the report of a Cabinet subcommittee constituted for the purpose of formulating a comprehensive policy on sand mining in the State to Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.‘Stock to last 100 years’Mr. Sidhu said during field visits it was found that Punjab had sand stocks to last another 100 years and gravel for another 170 years.“The committee has recommended fixation of the price of sand at ₹1,000 per 100 cubic feet,” said Mr. Sidhu, pointing out that earlier there was no price fixation for sand and supply was also lacking resulting in people getting sand at exorbitant prices.Capt. Singh said the Cabinet would soon take a final decision with regard to the recommendations made by the subcommittee on mining.“We are committed to bringing in transparency in the system of mining and also ensuring smooth and seamless supply of sand and gravel to the people at affordable rates,” he added.last_img read more

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