BWI-AVTP Graduates 258

first_imgThe Accelerated Vocational Training Program (AVTP) at the Booker Washington Institute (BWI) in Kakata, Margibi County last weekend graduated 258 persons who completed courses in eleven disciplines.Some of the disciplines are Automotive, Carpentry, Drafting, Masonry, Plumbing, Domestic Science and Electrical.The event marked the 15th postwar graduation ceremony of the AVTP at BWI.The AVTP was established when the government, during the administration of President William R. Tolbert, Jr., identified the need to build the manpower capacity of the nation’s growing youth population through technical and vocational education and training. Established in 1977 the AVTP was a solution to the inadequate institutions of higher learning to absorb the high number of high school graduates, especially in 1976, when over 14,000 students graduated from high schools across the country. The Charter allows the AVTP to be established at all government owned vocational high schools, including the ones at BWI and the Liberia-Swedish Vocational Training Center in Yekepa, Nimba County.Youth and Sports Deputy Minister for Administration, Dr. T. Nancy Freeman, gave the keynote address on the topic, “The Importance of Technical Vocational Education on Our Development Agenda.” Said Dr. Freeman, the progress and prosperity of most nations of the world are closely identified with economic development. This is because the economic competiveness of a country depends on the skills of its workforce, she said, adding, “The skills and competencies of the workforce, in turn, are dependent upon the quality of the country’s education and training systems.”Vocational education, she said, is therefore considered as one of the crucial elements in enhancing economic productivity.“Technical and vocational education are tools for national development. It is also a form of education in both science, applied science and humanity, all aimed at developing individuals with the right attitude to work and the competency necessary to compete in a global society,” Dr. Freeman told the graduates. As a result, she said government was making all efforts to ensure that technical and vocational education is encouraged and promoted among Liberian youth, noting, “It is a relevant tool for addressing economic, political, and social crises that threaten the political and economic stability of nations.”She observed that reducing unemployment, lack of skilled workers and dropout rates, and the changing demographic nature of the workforce have placed the issue of workforce education high on the educational reform agenda.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

SA joins UN Security Council

first_imgUN ambassador Baso Sangqu andInternational Relations and CooperationMinister, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane willlead the South African delegation as thecountry takes its place in UN SecurityCouncil. (Image: United Nations) South Africa firmly committed itself to international peacekeeping efforts on 1 January 2011 when it took its place for a second term on the UN Security Council (UNSC). Voted in by 182 member states of the UN General Assembly last year, the country will serve as a non-permanent member for the 2011/12 term.The UNSC is made up of five permanent members – China, France, Russia, the UK and US – and 10 non-permanent members, which currently are Bosnia and Herzegovina; Germany; Portugal; Brazil; India; South Africa; Colombia; Lebanon; Gabon and Nigeria.The council is responsible for maintaining peace and security across the globe, usually by recommending that the parties involved reach an amicable agreement. The UNSC also conducts investigations into areas of conflict and may send in UN peacekeeping forces to help reduce tension.South Africa’s Department of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) said the country’s UNSC seat would give it the opportunity to forge closer partnerships with other member states.The department added that South Africa is committed to contributing to the work of the UNSC in maintaining international peace and security, particularly in Africa.“South Africa wants to advance the African agenda within the security council,” said the country’s UN ambassador Baso Sangqu.“More than two-thirds of the conflicts and crises that the security council handles are in Africa. It is not something that we should be proud of,” he said.Learning from experienceSouth Africa previously served on the UNSC in 2007 and 2008. “South Africa has learnt important lessons from the first term,” said Sangqu, who will lead the country’s UNSC delegation.Dirco said it has assembled a “crack team” of diplomats and officials to help South Africa serve on the council.“In its actions, South Africa will be guided by the commitment to uphold international law and universal values, and help others protect or achieve their inherent and inalienable rights,” said International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane.She added that the country would continue with its efforts to promote and enhance the UNSC’s cooperation with regional organisations, particularly the African Union’s Peace and Security Council.Sangqu said: “Ivory Coast will be an issue we will have to deal with. There is now a standoff with regards to who the leader is. As a council member, South Africa will have to lead from the front on such issues.”South Africa will also advocate for more resources to help resolve the conflict in Somalia, the ambassador added.He said the UNSC should not to let the situation in that country become “a forgotten conflict” like the dispute between Morocco and Western Sahara guerrillas.last_img read more

Ask.com: What differentiates it from Google?

first_imgWhy Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Related Posts Other Features & ConclusionAsk.com also says it does social search, but rather than rely on user tagging – whichthey say is only popular in niche tech circles (e.g. del.icio.us and Flickr) – Ask.comlets its algorithm do the work. It does this by breaking terms down into groups andpresenting the results to the user. If you do asearch on gardening for example, you’ll see how it is broken down into multiplecategories.Ask.com also has the usual search portal (circa 2006) features – mobile, maps, news,blogs, binoculars (page preview), etc. There are subtle differences in all of thosefeatures when compared to Google, Yahoo and MSN. But ultimately I have to ask (pardon thepun): is Ask.com ‘next generation’ enough to challenge the big 3 plus AOL?I do like the concept of ExpertRank and their willingness to get as much useful infoon the first page of search results as possible. It seems like an innovative approach andcertainly differentiates Ask from Google.But when it comes down to it, the results I see aren’t sufficiently differentto make me want to change. I suspect a lot of Google’s 50%+ market share of users feelsthe same. Ask.com is still a successful business though, even if they don’t manage tomake great inroads into the market. I’m sure Ask is not crying into its milk about being5th. I was told that currently over 20% of Ask’s entire search terms – and hundreds ofcategories – have a Smart Answer.Comparison of Ask with GoogleIf you compare Ask.com to Google, there are immediately some noticeable differences.An obvious one is that Ask.com puts its advertisements within the main content pane,instead of in a separate right-hand pane like Google does. So when you do a generalsearch in Ask, the right-hand pane is sometimes occupied by advanced search options. AlsoAsk often has their ‘smart answers’ (see above) at the top of the main pane. The effectof all this is to give the user more immediately useful information – and drill downoptions – on the first page of results. This is what Jim Lanzone meant at Web 2.0 Summitwhen hesaid that “Ask.com enables users to do more, faster.”Below are a couple of screenshots, showing a search on “new zealand” in Ask, followedby the same query in Google: A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… During the Web 2.0 Summit, I got a chanceto sit down with the team at Ask.com and find out moreabout their search engine. This was straight after a Summit session entitled ‘DisruptionOpportunity: Beating Google at Their Own Game’ – in which Ask CEO Jim Lanzone and SeniorVP of the Online Services Group at Microsoft (and ex-Ask CEO) Steve Berkowitz discussedwith John Battelle how they are competing with Google. R/WW’s coverage of thatsession ishere.Letting the stats do the talking…Whenever I talk to or meet Ask.com people, I always get the feeling they are a littlepissed off at the lack of attention they get from blogs. To compensate, out come thestats to prove how big they are. For example, they often make a point of saying thatAsk.com is the 5th biggestsearch engine in theUS – behind Google, Yahoo, MSN and AOL. Also, Jim mentioned during the Summit sessionthat Ask is the 7thbiggest web property in the US – ahead of the likes of Amazon, NY Times andApple.So there’s no doubting that Ask.com is a significant player in the Web business – andI agree they don’t get their due for that. But what about the actual product – theAsk.com search engine. How does it stack up? I spoke to the team and took the searchengine for a test drive to find out…What really differentiates Ask from Google?I asked this of the Ask.com team, in our hallway meeting at the Summit. They told methat Ask’s technology “looks at the Web differently”. Whereas Google’s PageRank ranks itssearch results by popularity, Ask has something it calls “ExpertRank”. Essentially thisis an automated search algorithm (like Google has), but on top of that results areordered using topic communities and the editorial functions that create ‘Smart Answers’.While the ExpertRank formula is a secret sauce that Ask.com won’t divulge, they do saythat the top results in searches are determined by expertise – and not popularity. As itstates on their helppages:“Identifying topics (also known as “clusters”), the experts on those topics, and thepopularity of millions of pages amongst those experts — at the exact moment your searchquery is conducted — requires many additional calculations that other search engines donot perform.”Smart AnswersI was curious to know how ‘smart answers’ are determined. For a start, they don’t popup on every search result – for example a search for “richard macmanus” displays myprimary RSS feed at the top of the page, instead of a smart answer. The Ask team told methat smart answers are editorially done – and is a reminder of their natural languagepast. If you recall, Ask Jeeves (as it used to be known before the butler was fired, er Imean de-commissioned) started out as a search engine where you could ask a naturallanguage question – e.g. “what the heck is web 2.0?” – and get back a good answer. SmartAnswers is an extension of that philosophy of providing a natural language answer to auser’s search query. It does this by a combination of automated data mining and humaneditorial. But the human editors don’t physically write the answers, I was told – ratherthey act as aggregators and filters.center_img richard macmanus Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Tags:#search#web 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

Loss Prevention Magazine’s NRF Instant Poll

first_imgYesterday we asked… “What do you feel is the greatest benefit to having solution providers attend the EXPO Hall at the NRF Conference?” Our responses most prominently reflected that the opportunity to review the latest technologies, products, and services offered was the greatest benefit to having our solutions providers attend the expo hall at the NRF PROTECT conference.  Others recognize the value of meeting with vendors, discussing products and services, and reviewing how to best use those resources in our companies. Some, however, felt that there is very little value to having solution providers attend the conference…   Having attended these conferences for many years, speaking at great length with all the attendees, and understanding the dynamics of the conference structure, purpose, and objectives there is absolutely no question that all of the reasons mentioned in our poll are extremely important to the success of the event and the value that conference holds for the attendees. As a loss prevention professional, education holds exceptional value – especially considering the fast-paced evolution of the profession. Having a greater understanding of the advancements in technology and the tools that can help us carry out our responsibilities at maximum capacity is a fundamental and overwhelming need for both our professional development and the success of our program. Taking full advantage of the opportunities to meet with our solution provider partners is an absolute necessity.  – Sponsor –  This is just one aspect of our professional growth that continues to come into clear focus as we review the extreme importance that these events hold in the overall success of our industry, our company and our future. Today’s Poll question “What is the greatest value that the social events associated with the conference hold for the attendees?” Stay UpdatedGet critical information for loss prevention professionals, security and retail management delivered right to your inbox.  Sign up nowlast_img read more

The iCloud Hack Is Bad News For Apple’s HealthKit

first_imgRole of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement ReadWriteBody is an ongoing series where ReadWrite covers networked fitness and the quantified self.If we can’t trust Apple with our photos, can we trust it with our medical data?See also: How Apple Made Its Users Vulnerable To iCloud TheftApple has kept details about HealthKit, its framework for collecting personal health details like weight, heart rate, blood sugar, and other vital signs, close to the vest. Even fitness- and health-app developers whom Apple representatives have briefed are fuzzy on how it will work, ReadWrite has learned.One thing has become clear recently: Apple doesn’t want developers to store HealthKit data on iCloud. The App Store will reject apps that try to do so.Huh? That’s a huge headscratcher, given how Apple has pushed developers to use iCloud as a backup and cloud-storage service for other apps.When you think about it, though, Apple’s prohibition makes sense: There are a ton of regulations around private medical information, chiefly those embodied in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or HIPAA. Apple has not obtained clearance under HIPAA for iCloud.Here’s the catch for Apple and developers: If HealthKit doesn’t store data in iCloud, where will it put it? Sample code from Apple’s Fit application, a demonstration of HealthKit, suggests that apps using HealthKit will write to a local database called HKHealthStore. That means the data’s on your phone, much like your contacts database. See also: Sorry, Apple’s HealthKit Isn’t Going To Give You Six-Pack AbsApple is placing some restrictions around this data. For example, HKHealthStore isn’t available on iPads—so you can’t move your personal health data from your phone to your tablet. And from other rules it’s put in place, HealthKit apps can only use it for health or fitness purposes. It appears that medical-app developers, like the electronic medical-records software makers and hospital groups Apple has partnered with, will be able to take HealthKit-gathered data and move it into their own databases—provided they can prove they have the needed regulatory approvals from the Food and Drug Administration, which oversees medical devices.The iCloud HoleWhat about backups, though? Presumably, when you lose your phone, you’ll want your health data to be restored. And that data is on iCloud—as celebrities whose phone accounts got hacked learned to their dismay.Either Apple will back up HKHealthStore data points to iCloud along with the rest of your personal data—thereby violating its own prohibition against doing so—or you’ll lose your data if your phone gets lost, stolen, or wiped. (An Apple representative did not respond to a request for clarification on this point.)See also: Ahead Of The iWatch, Apple Has Given HealthKit A WorkoutBefore we can trust Apple with our medical data, it will need to come up with much better answers than the ones it has provided on the celebrity photo-hacking incidents, which it attributed to “targeted attacks” on the individuals’ usernames and passwords.Banks and hospitals manage to secure important personal data using usernames and passwords. They’re just vigilant about attempts to access that information, and swift to shut down suspicious login attempts in a way Apple wasn’t with iCloud backups.Apple’s approach suggests that the company is more comfortable with securing data on its devices than it is data in the cloud. That makes sense for a hardware manufacturer, but its approach is seriously outdated.Here’s what Apple should do: Put some of its prodigious cash to work upgrading iCloud security—and gaining HIPAA certification while it’s at it. At this point, Apple desperately needs some official stamp of approval for the security of its cloud storage. Crippling HealthKit while leaving back doors open for hackers is not the answer.Lead image via “Strength” on Apple’s YouTube channel owen thomas Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech …center_img Tags:#Apple#Apple HealthKit#Body#cloud security#data security#digital fitness#fitness apps#hackers#HealthKit#iCloud#iCloud hack#quantified self Related Posts The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technologylast_img read more

Who Loves Passwords? Nobody.

first_imgNo one likes passwords, but the reality is we need some form of identification and authentication to protect our digital reputation and information as well as facilitate customized online experiences.  As we celebrate World Password Day 2016, it is time to make passwords both strong and easy to use.Another year passes by and passwords still remain.  At some point, someone told you passwords were going away.  They lied.  Passwords are here to stay, in one shape or another.  Although unwieldly, they are still the most prevalent means to validate a user.The key to reduce the frustration is to streamline their use while still benefitting from the protection they provide.  But there is an inherent conundrum: if you don’t use them correctly, they don’t provide much protection.  If you do use them properly, they are horribly difficult to manage and adversely slow down our digital experiences.I may be an anomaly, but the number of login accounts I have now number well over one hundred.  Most I only use sporadically, but I do need them.  As a security advocate, I know better than to reuse passwords or simply increment them in a simple way.  That would be insecure.  To be honest, I don’t have much trust in some of the domains I sign-up for.  I suspect some admins might take a peek at user’s credentials or even worse, their security practices are insufficient and my password may eventually get breached by a malicious hacker.  Either way, I expect several of my passwords to be exposed eventually.  Attackers then like to try those passwords on other accounts and look for easy patterns that the victim might be using to facilitate their ease of use.  If the threats figure it out, it is bad news.  Like dominoes falling, your accounts too will tumble and be in the hands of attackers.  They can login, steal your data, and impersonate you if they wish.  The damage can be serious enough for anyone to regret employing simple shortcuts to save time.Don’t despair, there is hope.  It is time to take the sting out of password management.Passwords are only protective if you use them correctly, but they don’t have to be hard to live with.  Get organized, let technology do the work for you, and follow these 4 simple rules:1. Use strong passwords or even better, a passphrase. Passwords are useless if they can be guessed or easily succumb to brute-force attacks.  So, make them challenging.  Additionally, when in doubt, change them.  Top web services look for suspicious patterns of activity and will notify users of a possible account breach.  Don’t ignore these warnings!  Change your passwords immediately by opening a new browser window and navigating to the site to change your password (never click on links in emails to do this).2. Make them unique.Never reuse the same password across different sites.  That makes it simple for attackers to compromise your entire digital life.  Furthermore, don’t make simple increments when changing passwords.  Moving from Password1 to Password2 is just asking for trouble.3. Use a password manager. Retire the post-it notes or spreadsheet file.  Using a reputable password manager is a huge time saver and will actually add more security into the mix.  Integrated password managers can automatically log users into websites and applications, which is tremendously convenient.  They facilitate the use of insanely strong and unique passwords, and make dreaded expiration notices a snap to deal with.  No more trying to navigate and interpret the obscure hieroglyphs as part of your secret code.  Password managers can generate ridiculously complex passwords that you never need to type in.  They can handle the brunt of all the work.  There are secure solutions out there that help take pain out of the process, like True Key by Intel Security.4. Biometrics and multifactor authentication is better! Biometrics can greatly reduce the frustration of logging in.  Fingerprint readers are great on phones and facial recognition on PC’s to speed up access.  Such systems are also emerging which can detect when you walk away and then lock the device.  Next generation solutions will take it a step further and unlock it automatically as you return.  Multifactor authentication schemes should be employed in high value situations, where if your password is compromised, the attacker still needs another form of authentication to proceed.  This thwarts all but the most elite types of attack and is well worth the extra effort for financial accounts and very private communications.Passwords don’t have to be hard to live with.  Get organized and let technology do the work for you.  Passwords aren’t going away anytime soon.  Reduce the loathing and inconvenience while maintain good security.  Remain vigilant and your passwords can save you from your worst digital day.Interested in more?  Follow me on Twitter (@Matt_Rosenquist) and LinkedIn to hear insights and what is going on in cybersecurity.  Also be sure to visit the Intel Security blog for the latest security news.last_img read more

Guardiola sees City closing on Chelsea level

first_imgManchester City Guardiola sees Man City closing on Chelsea level after £220m summer spend Chris Burton Last updated 2 years ago 15:16 18/9/2017 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(1) Pep Guardiola Manchester City Getty Manchester City Premier League Chelsea Guardiola The Catalan coach concedes that his side fell well short in last season’s Premier League title race, but hopes they are better prepared this term Pep Guardiola feels Manchester City are closer to the standard set by champions Chelsea following an elaborate summer spend.Having come up short in the 2016-17 Premier League title race to finish third, City splashed out around £220 million in the recent transfer window.Six players were brought onto their books, with deals done for Ederson, Kyle Walker, Danilo, Benjamin Mendy, Bernardo Silva and Douglas Luiz. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘I’m getting better’ – Can Man Utd flop Fred save his Old Trafford career? Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing The fresh faces have helped City to make an unbeaten start to the season, with a 6-0 mauling of Watford in their latest outing seeing them set the early pace alongside arch-rivals Manchester United.Citizens 25/1 for another 6-0 v PalacePressed on whether his side are now ready to sustain a challenge for the top-flight crown, Guardiola said: “We will see. But I think we’ve made a step forward in terms of last season.”My feeling now is that everybody knows what we have to do, the players know what they have to do, with, without the ball in transition. And that’s so important.”We weren’t good enough last season, Chelsea and Tottenham were better. You have to accept it.”You have to accept sometimes the opposition is better. Then you analyse what to improve for the future.”In an athlete’s career there are maybe 10 or 15 percent happiness moments – you lose more than you win. So you’ve got to enjoy it when you win.”While City have collected four wins and a draw from their five games so far, scoring 14 goals in the process, Guardiola believes there is even more to come from his new-look side.Sergio Aguero Watford Manchester City Premier LeagueHe added: “Even if it looks like we cannot improve, of course we can improve.”There’s still movement, there are still actions we can improve.”The full-backs are so important. They offer energy to go up and down so that means we can put more players in the middle, to play, to pass the short passes.”I like it when we play short passes through the middle, five, six metres, that gives us continuity. We create the spaces behind the press.”To do that you need more players in one position.”And Kyle and Danilo and Mendy help us a lot to be able to do that. Without that it would be even more complicated.”The games continue to come thick and fast for City, with Guardiola’s side set to take in a League Cup clash with West Brom, a Champions League meeting with Shakhtar Donetsk and Premier League meetings with Crystal Palace and Chelsea before the end of September. Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more