SAN FRANCISCO — Stephen Curry almost gave up, but he’s giving the tunnel shot another try.Curry’s pregame tunnel heaves became a spectacle at Oracle Arena that attracted the attention of thousands of cameras and fans. The move to San Francisco’s Chase Center this season presented some obstacles for Curry to recreate that routine — mainly, geometry.Before the Warriors’ season opener against the Clippers Thursday, Curry tried and missed his shot attempt from his new tunnel.At Oracle Arena, …
20 April 2015The World Travel Market Africa (WTM Africa) was fantastic this year and exceeded all expectations, according to Sugen Pillay, the exhibition’s commercial director.Speaking on the sidelines of the conference, he said the international buyers at WTM Africa were impressive, and were “impressed with the exhibitors”.WTM Africa was held in Cape Town from 15 to 17 March. More than 200 hosted buyers attended the event, which was in its second year. It had grown significantly in just a year, he added: in 2014, there were 3 000 trade visitors and 200 exhibitors; this year there were 550 exhibitors. Visitor numbers still had to be aggregated.“We had the right type of international buyer and more than 20 African countries represented. This gave a real sense of what the continent had to offer,” he said. “Exhibitors and visitors were surprised by the number and type of buyers at the show.”WTM Africa is to be followed by the Tourism Indaba in Durban, the entrenched annual exhibition that runs from 9 to 11 May this year. Indaba showcases Southern Africa’s best tourism products, and attracts international buyers and media from across the world.Pillay saw no conflict between the two. Indaba focused on the inbound market, he explained.“The industry has responded well to WTM Africa,” said Pillay. “We also focus on the outbound market, and we featured countries from outside Africa. This means they see Africa as an outbound market, and that there is a demand for tourists from Africa.”EbolaAddressing the knock on effect of issues such as Ebola on tourism to Africa, Pillay said tourist numbers had dropped since the Ebola outbreak. “There is a perception globally that affects the consumer. There is a need for education that Ebola is in a small region of an entire continent.”Governments played a role in this education and the various tourism associations were working hard to get the message out. “Global issues like this do have an immediate effect on tourism, but it is not long term. And tourism is a long-term industry,” he added.“The response to WTMAfrica shows that tourism is on a growth path in Africa.”Figures released by Tourism Indaba earlier this month support Pillay’s comment. Indaba exhibitor numbers were up 30% and hosted buyers were up 100%.South African Tourism, owners of the Indaba, said on 10 April that exhibitor applications were up 30% compared to 2014, and 90% of the tradeshow floor space had been reserved. Approved non-hosted buyer applications were on a par with 2014; and approved hosted buyer numbers were double that of 2014.Outbound marketWTM Africa is marketed as Africa’s largest inbound and outbound business to business tourism show. It is a platform for buyers and exhibitors to do business. In addition, key issues and trends are presented and discussed via interactive networking sessions and panel discussions.This year, these included the Responsible Tourism Speed Networking Session, the Asata Western Cape Chapter Meeting and Young Professional in Travel Networking Session, Rhino Art’s presentation highlighting rhino poaching, and Wendy van der Byl’s presentation on the SADC Univisa between Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia and Angola.A highlight was the inaugural African Responsible Tourism Awards.Figures are not yet available for WTM Africa this year, but at the inaugural event in 2014 about 4 000 industry professionals negotiated deals worth $314-million (R3.7- billion). This was expected to be exceeded this year, and 2014’s figures surpassed, said WTM Africa.Freedom Park on showFreedom Park, the memorial park in Pretoria, was among the exhibitors. “[The] World Travel Market 2015 audience [was] exposed to the Wall of Names, which is an element amongst many within Freedom Park wherein more than 80 000 names of the heroes and heroines who perished in various wars like the First World War, Second World War, Anglo Boer War, Wars of Resistance and Liberation War are inscribed,” said Freedom Park spokesperson Naomi Madima.The market was a suitable platforms for Freedom Park to exhibit its iconic symbols because it hosted African and international exhibitors in the tourism industry. In keeping with the ethos of the park, the stand carried information dating back 3.6 billion years, as well as on various phases of the South African history from slavery, genocide, colonialism, industrialisation, liberation and democracy.“Freedom Park is a national monument in a true sense in that it encompasses and embraces a history of all South Africans and acknowledges other international liberation heroes and heroines,” Madima said.WTM Africa’s official charity this year was The Tourism Child Protection Code of Conduct. It, together with leading South African tourism industry stakeholders, used the event to signal their game-changing approach to protecting children from the worst forms of exploitation. The Code is an industry-driven, multi-stakeholder initiative with the mission to provide awareness, tools and support to the tourism industry in order to combat the sexual exploitation of children in contexts related to travel and tourism.WTM Africa forms part of Africa Travel Week, which comprises of three co-located industry events, namely: International Luxury Travel Market Africa, International Business Travel Market and Word Travel Market Africa.SAinfo reporter
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Dry weather allowed growers to make large gains on oat harvest this week, as well as continued progress on wheat harvest and hay cutting, according to Cheryl Turner, Ohio State Statistician of the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. There were 6.1 days suitable for fieldwork for the week ending July 17th. While hay cutting continues in earnest, the dry weather has slowed growth and lessened yield from second and third hay cuttings. There is some browning in pastures, as very little rain has fallen throughout the state. Corn and soybeans look good, but will need moisture as they continue to mature. Early planted soybeans are faring better than later planted soybeans. Some fields are looking stressed, but are still in good condition overall. Other activities this week included weed mowing and spraying fields.Read the full report here
Is there a construction process which can deliver a value of sustainable prosperity? This is the term being used by Worldwatch in preparation for the upcoming Rio+20 conference. It moves beyond the “do no further harm” approach of the original definition of sustainability (Brundtland report), and recognizes the need to actively restore the Earth’s systems to full health.The key difference in terminology is that this concept must, in toto, include all of the world’s population, rich and poor.Sustainable prosperity is a challengeWOW – that is a really tall order, considering that green building represented 25% of new construction activity in 2010, and a third of all new nonresidential construction (McGraw-Hill Construction report, Green Outlook 2011). Those numbers are rising faster than expected – so that is all good. But … it includes any shade of green, including the very light green LEED-certified level. Few of these green projects have reached a net-zero level, and probably only a handful are actively involved in restoring the natural resources.So while I commend us all for getting on board, what will it take to get to sustainable prosperity? What does that future look like, and what might be the construction process which could accommodate this level “beyond green”? That folks, is the topic of my dissertation. I won’t give away any of my trade secrets (because I don’t have any yet…), but I can tell you that it is hopeful. There are little gems of “value enhancing” construction which are popping up in our industry.First, do no harm — then, imagine ways to restore our damaged environmentFor example, Boldt Construction is fine-tuning the use of target value design with lean construction, as an interactive, solutions-oriented, vision of way of designing to ideal state. (Here’s a link to a very clear description of IPD, GMP and TVD.)There are wonderful stories of owners, like Gary Christensen, who were willing to explore the possibilities of sustainability and ended up with “a beautiful, high performance building that’s good for the environment and didn’t cost us any more to do.” His project, the Banner Bank Building, collects stormwater from its surrounding seven acres and reuses it in its sewage system, and uses a water capture on the roof to flush toilets.Could we also capture the steam from the HVAC, harvest the energy and the water? Or scrub carbon dioxide out of the air?Imagining a “dream building”Mr. Watanabe, one of the past presidents of Toyota, offered his vision for a “dream car” — a vehicle that cleans the air, prevents accidents, promotes health, evokes excitement, and can drive around the world on a single tank of gas. The technology parts are already being refined, and the Toyota Production System has developed the process and the people to handle the innovations.What is the vision of a “dream building” – and how will we get there?Vera Novak writes the Eco Build Trends blog and is currently earning her PhD in Construction from Virginia Tech.
Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper Anil Kumble has described his side’s nine-wicket crushing of underdogs Guyana in their opening Champions League Twenty20 match here as a “perfect game” with his players coming up with an all-round show.”It was a perfect game. We came up with an all-round show. The bowlers did a great job to restrict Guyana to 103 and then the batsmen finished off the match in style. It is good feeling that we have started the tournament with a win,” Kumble said after RCB’s nine-wicket victory.He said once the Guyana top-order, including captain Ramnaresh Sarwan, were out cheaply, his players knew they had a chance to restrict the opposition to a small total.”The first couple of overs were critical. Once Sarwan was out cheaply, the pressure was on them. When we chased the thought was always there to end the match fast (to boost the net run-rate], but you needed solid platform too. Rahul and Kallis did just that for Robin to be able to tee off,” he said.”The players got enough time at the middle and I am hoping that we would do well in the coming matches,” he added.Guyana captain Ramnaresh Sarwan admitted that once his side put up just 100-odd runs they knew it won’t be enough against a star-studded RCB side.”We did not put enough runs on the board. We lost early wickets and that put the pressure on us. There was not just enough runs to defend,” he said.advertisement”But majority of the players have never played in these conditions, and it is a learning experience. But we really need to learn fast,” he added.Man of the Match Jacques Kallis was happy that he could play a big role in his side’s win after coming off from an injury.”I am coming back from a back injury, so I couldn’t put too much work in the lead-up to the tournament. I am happy with my performance,” he said.”The team has got fantastic preparation in lead-up to the tournament. Credit should go to coach Ray (Jennings). We got good nets, good net bowlers.
The Oscar envelopes and announcement cards that contain names of winners of the most coveted honour in movie industry are getting a facelift.Breaking away from a 70-year routine, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will this year use a glamourous gold envelope at the 83rd Academy Awards instead of the plain, white paper envelope, the kind available at any office supply store.”The envelopes are such an integral part of the Academy Awards, yet there has never been a dramatic, specially designed envelope and card to announce the Oscar recipients,” telecast producers Bruce Cohen and Don Mischer said in a statement.The new custom-designed, handcrafted keepsake envelopes and announcement cards have been made by Los Angeles-based custom stationer Marc Friedland. The envelopes are made of “iridescent” gold paper watermarked with little images of Oscar. It is lined with shiny red paper embossed with gold Oscars.The winner’s name appears on a heavy piece of lacquered red paper inside, with the category listed on front and back. The envelope will be sealed with a shiny red sticker adorned with two strips of red ribbon.”The Art Deco-inspired satin gold envelope will contain a heavyweight ecru card featuring gold foil accents and a gold leaf-embossed Oscar statuette along with the phrase – ‘And the Oscar goes to…’,” the statement said.The winner’s name on the announcement card would be printed in charcoal ink and mounted onto a matching, red lacquer hand-wrapped frame. The back of the card will be printed with the award category.advertisementTill now, the envelopes were printed on heavy cream-coloured stock, with plain block letters sporting the name of the category and, inside, the phrase ‘And the Oscar goes to’ and the winner’s name and film.The Academy has been using sealed envelopes for the last 70 years after a winner’s name had leaked out early once.Friedland, whose company Marc Friedland Couture Communications has designed high-end invitations for the past 25 years, said in spite of the Oscar envelope being the most “iconic” and “symbolic” envelope in the world, “it was funny that it was the most non-descript, office supply store bought” till now.”At the end of the day, the event is a celebration of an amazing accomplishment. We wanted to bring back the elegance and glamour. The design concept was to be timeless, regal and rich and luxe… the envelope serves as an iconic symbol of that moment,” Friedland added.Friedland got the envelope assignment two weeks ago.He took design cues from the look of this year’s Oscar set. He will prepare cards bearing the names of each of this year’s nominees. After the ballots are tabulated, partners at PricewaterhouseCoopers will prepare two complete sets of correct envelopes, and destroy the remaining cards.This year, the Academy is also returning to the phrase ‘And the Oscar goes to…’ after a one-year experiment with ‘And the winner is…’ to announce who wins the award.