Scientists Shake Their Fists at God

first_imgSome scientists want to dictate commandments back to their Maker.“Thou shalt not tell us how to behave any more” shouts a headline on New Scientist toward God. Of course, to the secular evolutionary atheists at science news sites, all gods are created equal. They are endowed by their human creators with certain unsavory mights, among them strife, arbitrariness and the pursuit of punishment.We already know that humans don’t need religion to be moral. Now it turns out that religious moralising is an evolutionary response to societal upheavals 2500 years ago.Religion won’t disappear. But the research suggests the great moralising religions are doomed to ebb away, as they already are in the more affluent parts of the world. Some people worry that without moral guidance, anarchy will ensue. They need not worry: we will do good without it.The boastful statement begs many questions. What is moral? On what basis do they understand the origin of morality? On what basis can they predict the future behavior of humans? Evolutionists didn’t do too well predicting morality in Darwin’s century, with its two world wars and atheist-inspired democides of 148 million people (11/30/05). According to CMI, Stalin credited Darwin with his hefty share in these crimes against humanity:Reading Darwin had an enormous impact on me. It corroborated my defiance of God and inspired me to systematically break all the Ten Commandments, which I now realized were only chains. Though I had stolen and lied before, I now stole and lied with a higher purpose—freedom of self. And the effects on my political philosophy were equally lasting. Historians of the future may even conclude that Darwinism + Leninism = Stalinism.Before they get too cocky, the editors at New Scientist should consider the influence of religion on their own theory. Dr. Aldemaro Romero questions the reductionism of the “Modern Synthesis” (neo-Darwinism). On PhysOrg, he cautions fellow evolutionists, who follow a limited focus on natural selection, that they echo the predestination of some religions. He warns, “if they do not understand the historical roots and the philosophical framework of their research, they are doomed at presenting only a very partial (and many times biased) view of nature.” The headline is even broader: “Influence of religion and predestination on evolution and scientific thinking.”There’s nothing new under the sun. The New Scientist attitude is the same old grumbling of the mixed multitude described in the Pentateuch. Though they had witnessed all of God’s powerful wonders to rescue them and meet their needs, they refused to obey Him, and would not have his chosen leader Moses to tell them what to do. Don’t you think Korah, Dathan and Abiram promoted themselves as the academic intelligentsia of their day? Don’t you think they fancied themselves as the superior thinkers? Don’t you imagine they presented their offerings as more respectable than those demanded by the revealed Law? The doom of today’s boasters will be no less swift and final.(Visited 62 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Protea hotspot under scrutiny

first_imgThe magnificent King protea, South Africa’s national flower. (Image: Fine Bush People) Fynbos in the Mont Rochelle Nature Reserve, with the Franschhoek mountains as backdrop. (Image: Franschhoek Wine Route)Janine ErasmusSouth Africa’s national plant, the protea, is creating a stir in botanical circles. An international team of scientists studying the magnificent plant and its habitat have discovered that new species of proteas, and other plants that exist with it, are appearing at a rate three times faster than anywhere else in the world, except Australia.Living up to its name, which was given in 1735 by Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus after the shape-shifting Greek sea god Proteus, new species of protea are bursting onto the scene at a rate that has the scientific world agog. The plant is found in both South Africa and Australia.This super-fast evolution is creating a hotspot brimming with species richness, according to a recent report published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and titled Contrasted patterns of hyperdiversification in Mediterranean hotspots.The team consists of botanists affiliated with renowned institutions in the UK, Australia, Sweden and the US. These include the world-famous Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew and its similarly-named counterpart in Melbourne, the Swedish Museum of Natural History, the National Herbariums of New South Wales and Victoria, Uppsala University, Florida State University, and South Africa’s Rhodes University.Hyper-diversificationThe protea occurs abundantly in South Africa’s Cape Floristic Region, also known as the Cape Floral Kingdom. This area is one of just five on earth which enjoy a temperate Mediterranean-like climate and have been designated as biodiversity hotspots by Conservation International, a non-profit organisation that works to protect these high-biodiversity areas.South Western Australia is another hotspot, and the other three are located in central Chile, California, and the Mediterranean basin.According to biologist Vincent Savolainen of the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew, species other than proteas, also occurring in the two regions, are very likely experiencing the same phenomenon.“This study proves that the abundance of different kinds of proteas in these two areas isn’t simply due to normal rates of species diversification occurring over a long period of time,” he said. “This is the first step towards understanding why some parts of the planet with a Mediterranean-style climate have become species-rich biodiversity hotspots.”Previously there had been no explanation for the existence of biodiversity hotspots, but the new research has led the team to believe that that climatic changes millions of years ago could have sparked the so-called hyper-diversification of proteas in Australia and South Africa.“As these two regions became hotter, dryer, and prone to seasonal fires,” explained Savolainen, “proteas – which are drought-resistant and able to re-grow easily after a fire – would have survived, thrived and diversified into new species when faced with less competition for resources from less hardy plants.”Today both areas are environmentally sensitive and need careful conserving, he added, and understanding more about their evolutionary history can help make conservation efforts more efficient.Floral abundanceThe Cape Floristic Region is one of only two that encompass an entire floral kingdom – the other is New Caledonia in Canada. It has the greatest extratropical (outside of the tropics) concentration of plant species in the world, with 9 000 plant species. Some 6 200 of these are endemic.All of this biological wonder is found in an area of just 78 555km2. In fact, the region has the highest concentration of plant species found anywhere – 1 300 per 10 000 km2, compared to the 400 per 10 000km2 of its closest rival, the South American rain forest.The most prevalent type of vegetation in the Cape Floristic Region is the fynbos (Afrikaans, meaning “fine bush”, referring to the tough, needle-like leaves of so many of its specimens). There are four major plant types within the fynbos classification – bulbs, restioids, ericoids and proteoids. The latter consists of the Proteaceae family, which includes the king protea (Protea cynaroides), South Africa’s national flower.Proteas originated 300-million years on the vast continent of Gondwanaland. The Proteaceae family comprises two subfamilies: the Proteoideae of southern Africa, and the Grevilleoideae of Australia and South America. These two continents were also part of the great mass of Gondwanaland, which started to break up about 167-million years ago during the Jurassic period.The bulb section of fynbos includes more than 1 500 familiar species such as freesias, agapanthus, gladioli, and ixias, which have become popular around the world.Other biodiversity hotspots in South Africa are Succulent Karoo and Maputaland-Pondoland-Albany.Do you have queries or comments about this article? Email Janine Erasmus on janinee@mediaclubsouthafrica.com.Related articlesWorld honour for SA botanistAfrican herbs’ healing potentialGeography of South AfricaUseful linksConservation InternationalProceedings of the National Academy of SciencesCape Floristic RegionCape Action for People and the EnvironmentFynbosProtea atlas projectThe King protealast_img read more

South Africa: Sound investment destination, emerging market that matters

first_imgSouth Africa’s African Mining Indaba, held annually in Cape Town and now in its 20th year, is the world’s largest mining investment conference. (Image: Mining Indaba)South Africa is an important emerging market in the global stage, offering a solid and steadily growing economy with secure rewards for potential investors. That was the consensus at the Investment Promotion Workshop hosted by Brand South Africa at the Mining Indaba in Cape Town today.The workshop, co-hosted with the departments of mineral resources, trade and industry and science and technology, showcased South Africa’s competitiveness in mining, geosciences, science and technology, as well as the strength of its financial and regulatory environment.Presenters included Brand South Africa chief executive Miller Matola, trade and industry’s Yunus Hoosen, Imraan Patel of the department of science and technology, Martha Mokonyane of mineral resources, Mxolisi Kota of the Council for Geosciences, Matlou Mabokano of the Technology Innovation Agency, Declan Vogt of the CSIR and Peter Craven of Mintek.They made a compelling business case for why prospective investors should take South Africa seriously as an investment destination. For example, prudent monetary and fiscal policy has allowed the country’s economy to grow in value from US$80-billion in 1994 – the year apartheid ended – to $400-billion today. And it continues to grow, despite the uneven global economic recovery.“South Africa is a sound destination for inward flows of investment and an emerging market that matters,” Brand South Africa’s Matola said.From mining to financial servicesThe global economic crisis and disruptions at home have had their impact on South African mining, but the sector remains a significant contributor to the economy. Recent research presented at the workshop shows that platinum, coal and gold contribute 66% to revenue, and 84% to employment.Research also shows that the South African economy has diversified in the past 20 years. The contribution of banking and real estate has risen from 12.5% to 24%, a good sign that the country is on its way to a knowledge economy.South Africa also remains a reliable destination for international investors. Foreign direct investment projects grew at a compound rate of 22.4% between 2007 and 2012, making the country the top investment destination in Africa.The workshop also discussed the joint commitment by government and business to the rollout of the National Development Plan, the vision for what the country will look like in the year 2030.Key components of the plan include:Making sustainable investments in competitive economic infrastructureIncreasing the pace of job creation, especially for young job-seekersEncouraging the expansion of businesses and the development of new enterprisesTransforming human settlements and developing a functioning public transport systemProviding policy certainty to encourage long-term investment in mining and other key sectorsIncreasing economic integration within sub-Saharan Africa in areas such as energy production, finance, tourism, communications, infrastructure and customs administrationThe Mining Indaba ends on Thursday 6 February 2014.last_img read more

South Africa’s Kagiso Rabada breaks awards record

first_imgSocial media was buzzing this week with well wishes pouring in for the 2016 South African Cricketer of the Year, Kagiso Rabada. The 21-year-old fast bowler is the first player to win six individual trophies at the annual Cricket South Africa (CSA) awards.Proteas captain AB de Villiers and batsman Hashim Amla had previously won five awards each, the CSA said. Rabada is also the youngest to have won the premier award.Some of the high fives given to Rabada on Twitter:Congratulations to SA Cricketer Of The Year @KagisoRabada25. #CSAawards16 https://t.co/hPAclxtnE9— Cricket South Africa (@OfficialCSA) July 26, 2016#KagisoRabada ke bosso! @KagisoRabada25. Congratulations on the big win. https://t.co/XCiTcBNvth— Themba Mathebula (@Ithembalami) July 27, 2016Hey @KagisoRabada25 i build trophy display cabinets.. Let me know lol. Congratulations sir… #kagisorabada @OfficialCSA @adidasZA— Craignificent (@Craig_05) July 26, 2016What a Star! Best is still to come. Can’t wait too see him in the future #KagisoRabada https://t.co/gzDi6fak4O— Media Link (@veralink) July 26, 2016Watch some of Rabada’s career highlights:The other trophiesRabada also landed Castle Lager Test Cricketer of the Year, Castle Lager ODI Cricketer of the Year, the peer voted SA Players’ Player of the Year and the SA Fans Player of the Year. His sixth award was for bowling the RAM Delivery of the Year to England’s Jason Roy in the KFC T20 International at the Bidvest Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg.“I’m excited to see what challenges lie ahead. I can’t wait to play again,” Rabada told Jacaranda FM on Tuesday, admitting it felt surreal to win so many awards.Watch Rabada talk about his amazing night. He also pays tribute to his family:Previous winnersCSA is celebrating its 25th birthday this year. Other cricketers who have won the prestigious Cricketer of the Year award include:Jacques Kallis (2004 and 2011)Makhaya Ntini (2005 and 2006)Hashim Amla (2010 and 2013)AB de Villiers (2014 and 2015)Shaun Pollock (2007)Dale Steyn (2008)Graeme Smith (2009)Vernon Philander (2012)Watch Rabada talk about his dreams:Other achieversOther winners on the night this year were:Imran Tahir – Oxigen T20 International Player of the YearTemba Bavuma – KFC So GoodStephen Cook – International Newcomer of the YearDané van Niekerk – Momentum Women’s Cricketer of the YearLungi Ngidi – Africa T20 Cup Player of the TournamentAlviro Petersen – Momentum One-Day Cup Player of the YearNicky van den Bergh – Domestic Newcomer of the YearDwaine Pretorius – SACA Most Valuable PlayerHeino Kuhn – Sunfoil Series Cricketer of the Year and Domestic Players’ Player of the YearRob Walter – Pitchvision Coach of the YearAlbie Morkel – RAM Slammer of the YearSource: Cricket South Africa, FacebookWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using SouthAfrica.info materiallast_img read more

A unique avenue to drive agriculture’s message into the city

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Continuing the mission of advocacy and outreach into Central Ohio, Franklin County Farm Bureau was seeking out a way to expand their message and communicate with those that aren’t all that close to the farm, both in distance and understanding. So, they recently acquired Edible Columbus magazine.“Edible Columbus is a print, community-based publication published four times a year, and distributed free to the public,” said Colleen Leonardi, the magazine’s Editor-In-Chief. “From sustainable agriculture to seasonal cooking to locally sourced restaurants, breweries and distilleries, our mission is to create fresh, beautiful content to engage readers in our food, our region and our culture, season by season.”Leonardi said the partnership with Franklin County Farm Bureau, a grassroots organization that works to support Ohio’s thriving local food and farming economy, compliments what they do at Edible Columbus.Edible Columbus has a yearly reach of 100,000 readers in the Central Ohio area. The magazine is available at the locations of local businesses that advertise within the publication and is also received by subscription.“The goal is to utilize the publication to continue to promote all of the things that we value as an organization, including safe, healthy, affordable food, as well as conservation, clean water and access to markets for area producers.” said Steven Berk, Organization Director for the Franklin County Farm Bureau.With the acquisition of Edible Columbus, Franklin County Farm Bureau hopes to generate operating funds through advertisers but there is also going to be an emphasis on generating membership through this non-traditional outreach.“There is always a revenue aspect anytime that you run a business, so that part does factor into it,” Berk said. “Even more than that, the reason we specifically went with purchasing a magazine is that we really wanted to expand our platform and our brand. People know Farm Bureau as this organization that promotes consumer advocacy and consumer choice and farming in the Buckeye State, so we wanted to use that and expound that message through the magazine.”For the past four years, Franklin County Farm Bureau was a sponsor and bought ad space in Edible Columbus, so they already knew quite a bit about the magazine’s objectives and audience and thought it would be a great fit for their portfolio when the opportunity to acquire it presented itself.“The Franklin County Farm Bureau Board of Trustees is a very forward-thinking, progressive and engaged group and they jumped on this proposition,” Berk said. “I think more county Farm Bureaus are interested in what we are doing here and, of course, Farm Bureau is always looking for unique ways to reach consumers.”last_img read more

Net Neutrality: Your Cheat Sheet To The FCC’s Proposal

first_imgdan rowinski Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement Tags:#AT&T#broadband#Carriers#Comcast#FCC#fiber#Government#Internet#net neutrality#open internet#open internet order#verizon The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology Related Posts What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … In net neutrality, as in so many other walks of life, what people do is much more important than what they say.Consider, for instance, FCC chairman Tom Wheeler, who repeatedly insists that the commission’s proposed rules for preserving “net neutrality” don’t inherently allows for Internet “fast lanes.” Such fast lanes—known in FCC parlance as paid prioritization—would allow Internet services providers like Comcast or Verizon charge companies more for faster Internet connections directly to consumers. See also: White Spaces And Dark Fiber: Internet Giants Angle For Control Of The Internet’s Pipes“There is nothing in this proposal that authorizes fast lanes. In the blocking section of the proposal we ask the question, should there be a ban in paid prioritization as an action of blocking?” Wheeler said. “In the non-discrimination section of the proposal we ask if there should be a ban on paid prioritization.”Yet the FCC proposal doesn’t actually rule out paid prioritization, either, which means it could be allowable under certain circumstances. In reality, the FCC is simply asking for comments as to whether it should ban paid prioritization entirely; the option for Internet fast lanes is still very much on the table, despite Wheeler’s apparent denial.That’s far from the only head-scratcher hidden away in the thicket of jargon and political rhetoric around the FCC’s net-neutrality proposal. Here’s a shorthand guide to the major issues at stake as the FCC ponders how—and how hard—to preserve an open Internet. (You can also see the full text of the FCC’s proposed rules at the end of this post.)The Paid Prioritization PuzzleImagine that you are Netflix. You deliver television and movies straight into the homes of consumers via the Internet. You want the biggest and fastest pipes you can get, because your business depends on providing responsive, high-quality video on demand.Cable companies want to be able to charge companies like Netflix higher fees for these faster, more reliable connections directly to consumers. If they get their way, wealthy companies like Netflix or Google could afford to pay for better Internet services; smaller companies and individuals may not be so lucky. Hence the term “fast lanes” for paid, privileged Internet channels.The FCC’s proposal asks specifically for comments as to whether it should ban such “paid prioritization” outright. But as it currently stands, the proposal doesn’t go that far. In fact, it would technically make it possible—and desirable, at least if you’re a broadband provider—to implement the fast lanes.“Let’s be clear. Any proposal to allow fast lanes for the few is emphatically not net neutrality,” said former FCC commissioner Michael Copps in a statement through Common Cause, a policy reform group. “The clear common-sense prerequisite for an Open Internet is Title II reclassification, guaranteeing the agency’s authority to protect consumers and ensure free speech online.”What’s Title II? See below.The Rebuttable PresumptionThe FCC’s fact sheet about the open Internet proposal contains a curious statement. With respect to rules that would prevent practices that threaten an open Internet, the sheet states that the draft “includes a rebuttable presumption that exclusive contracts that prioritize service to broadband affiliates are unlawful.”This is a loaded statement, so let’s break it down. Priority service for broadband affiliates means that the cable companies could give their own properties faster service while throttling or providing slower service to competitors. For instance, Comcast owns NBC Universal. The cable company could provide perfect delivery of NBC content to consumers while slowing down service for competitors, like CNN or ReadWrite.The FCC proposal does suggest that this priority service—which directly ties to the notion of paid prioritization—is a bad thing, and making it unlawful sounds like pretty strong medicine. But that pesky term “rebuttable presumption” is a giant loophole. The FCC itself describes a rebuttable presumption as “a presumption that is taken to be true unless someone comes forward to contest it and proves otherwise.”That means priority service is bad unless you can prove to me that it is good. And you know that broadband providers will be lining up their lawyers to prove that it is good. If they succeed, then poof! The paid prioritization genie is out of the bottle. As Gigaom’s broadband reporter Stacy Higginbottom writes, “Yes, that is a house the FCC is building on sand.”Title II And Section 706One important thing to bear in mind in this fight is that much of the discussion actually has little to do with consumers or broadband providers. But it has everything to do with what the FCC can and cannot do to regulate the Internet by law.You’re going to hear a lot about Title II. This is a reference to Title II of the Communications Act of 1934, the first major U.S. law to regulate telephones and transmission media. Title II is known as the “common carrier” provision of law. If a company falls under the designation of Title II, it is considered a public utility subject to FCC rules that guarantee public access to service.This entire battle over net neutrality stems from two actions by the FCC in the last 10 years. The first was in 2004 when then FCC chairman Michael Powell outlined four basic Internet freedoms that became the framework of net neutrality. The second was the FCC’s 2010 Open Internet Order, which created the first net official neutrality regulation in the U.S.Broadband providers weren’t all that pleased with the 2010 Open Internet Order. Verizon sued, claiming that the FCC lacked authority to regulate broadband providers, because they were (and are) classified as information services—not public utilities (or, technically, as “common carriers”). Verizon won its fight in January this year; ever since, the FCC has been struggling to figure out if it has any power at all in this arena.So when you hear about Title II, what net neutrality advocates want is to classify broadband as a public utility which would then give the FCC power to enforce net neutrality as it sees fit. But the FCC knows that if it tries to go down the Title II route, the broadband providers are going to sue yet again. (In all honesty, of course, they’re likely to sue no matter what.)Still, the prospect seems to alarm the commission. The FCC’s preference to date has been to apply net neutrality rules under Section 706 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 because it upsets fewer applecarts. But it’s also legally ambiguous. The federal appeals court gave Verizon its victory recommended that the FCC use its Title II authority if it wants to pursue net-neutrality regulation.The FCC’s notice for rulemaking specifically asks for comment on which avenue is preferable to creating policy to regulate an open Internet, with initial comments due by July 15. Here’s where you can leave a comment for the FCC.The No Blocking RuleThe “No Blocking Rule” is a provision with the proposal that “proposes ensuring that all who use the Internet can enjoy robust, fast and dynamic Internet access.” That means broadband providers couldn’t deny fast Internet service to consumers, businesses or organizations on any basis and would be forbidden to purposefully provide slower service.The No Blocking Rule is the flip side of paid prioritization. Broadband providers could feasibly slow down an Internet service (like Netflix) to make it basically unusable. No Blocking would create rules for the minimum viable service that broadband companies provide so that Internet services are guaranteed to work.Expanded TransparencyAn ombudsman is a watchdog that oversees an organization or an industry to make sure that all participants are acting fairly. The FCC wants to create an ombudsman position to take formal and informal complaints against Internet service providers and to act as arbiter for conflict resolution.The FCC also wants broadband providers to self-police by providing regular reports about network congestion, data speeds and possibly even paid prioritization practices.Wireless Net NeutralityThe FCC essentially wants to bring back the full force of the 2010 Open Internet Order that the courts struck down. But the 2010 order had a glaring loophole itself: It set different rules for wireline broadband (like DSL) and wireless Internet, which would include 4G LTE.Wireless broadband was effectively exempted from net neutrality in the 2010 order, which allowed carriers like Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile to block or slow down services as they saw fit. We saw this happen in practice when Verizon blocked the Google Wallet payments app from smartphones on their networks in favor of their own payments solution, called Isis. (This example would also fall under the category of giving priority service to broadband provider affiliates, something the FCC is considering banning.)The FCC doesn’t plan to make that mistake again; this time around, it wants to subject wireless service to the same net-neutrality rules as fixed, wired networks. The FCC is discussing how it can achieve this, either through employing Title III of the Communications Act of 1934 (which governs wireless transmission like radio or television) or through existing measures like Section 706 or Title II.Here’s the FCC’s notice of proposed rulemaking: Lead image by Flickr user tlsmith1000, CC 2.0last_img read more

Understanding Keyframe Interpolation in Adobe After Effects

first_imgIntroducing InterpolationWhen you apply keyframes to a layer, After Effects will interpolate the values between them. For this particular animation, I’m using two simple position keyframes to launch my rocket. The keyframes are moving the rocket through space over a period of time. I can precisely control how the rocket moves through space and time by changing the interpolation methods.After Effects uses the Bezier interpolation method, allowing you to control keyframes with bezier handles. I can switch the interpolation method via the Keyframe Interpolation dialogue box, which gives you options for both spatial and temporal interpolation settings. While this might seem a little technically intimidating at first glance, it’s actually quite simple once you understand the lingo. Essentially, these methods specify how After Effects applies bezier handles to keyframes. Let’s have a closer look.Spatial InterpolationSpatial interpolation, as the name implies, refers to space. You can view and manipulate spatial keyframes in the composition panel. If I move the end keyframe in the composition panel, the keyframes don’t move on the timeline panel. This is because the rocket is still traveling over the same period of time, just a different distance. To compensate, it will either travel faster or slower, depending on which direction I drag the keyframe. You can see the change in speed reflected in the speed dots on the motion path. Each dot represents a frame, with more dots signaling a slower speed.Temporal InterpolationOnce again, as the name implies, temporal interpolation refers to time. When you move keyframes left and right on the timeline, you’re moving them in time. For example, if I move the final keyframe in my rocket animation, the keyframes in the composition panel won’t move. There will, however, be a change in the speed dots between the keyframes. As I move the end keyframe closer to the beginning, my speed dots will become few and far between. This is because the rocket is traveling the same distance over a shorter period of time. Therefore, it must move at a much faster rate. The speed dots will reflect this. Now, let’s tweak the animation.Refining the AnimationCurve the Flight PathWhile I have my keyframes in place, the animation looks about as real as Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson in The Scorpion King. To lend the rocket launch more realism, I need to adjust the interpolation.First, I’ll add a quick curve to the flight path of the rocket, making it turn slightly to the left after it launches. To do this, I’ll grab the Pen tool (G) and place an additional keyframe to the motion path, roughly where I want the turn to begin. After the new keyframe is in place, I’ll select the final keyframe and move it to the left. You’ll notice right away that the motion path is not as smooth as we want it to be. I can fix this with the bezier handles. To straighten out the rocket’s flight path, I’ll use the bezier handles of the last two keyframes.Once I have the keyframes in place and the motion path tuned in, I still have a few problems. First, the rocket is not facing forward. I can quickly remedy this by grabbing the layer and selecting Layer > Transform > Auto-Orient > Orient Along Path. This will actually face the rocket to the left, so I’ll have to rotate by 90 degrees to properly face the rocket forward. My second problem has to do with the speed. It’s still a very unnatural movement, so now I’ll focus on adjusting my keyframes temporally.Ramp Up the SpeedWith my motion path set, I now need to adjust the speed of the rocket to give it a more organic launch. As with most rockets, I want it to slowly ramp up in speed during takeoff. I can fine tune the speed with the Graph Editor. To open this display, I’ll simply press the Graph Editor button in the timeline panel. This interface will show me speed and value changes over time. To make sure I’m viewing the speed settings, I’ll press the Choose Graph Type button and select Edit Speed Graph.Once in the Graph Editor, I will select the position property of my rocket layer to bring up my keyframes in the display. To properly change the launch speed, I need to change the middle keyframe to Rove Across Time. This means it will not lock to a specific time but, rather, adjust based on the timing of the first and last keyframes. To make the keyframe rove, I’ll right-click it in the comp panel and select Rove Across Time. I’ll need to readjust my motion path, and then I’m ready to change the speed.To slowly ramp up the speed of my rocket, I’ll move the keyframes and bezier handles in the Graph Editor until I get a movement I like. For this particular animation, I want the first keyframe to be set to zero pixels/second. Then I’ll grab the bezier handle and drag it as far right as possible. This will slowly ramp up the speed to the next keyframe. Voilà! My rocket now has a smooth takeoff.Looking for more After Effects tutorials? We’ve got you covered.5 Ways To Create A Background in After EffectsVideo Tutorial: How to Stitch 360 Footage in After EffectsVideo Tutorial: How to Loop an Animation in Adobe After EffectsAnimate A ‘Top 10 Countdown’ Screen With After EffectsAnimate Clean Commercial Graphics in Adobe After Effects Keyframe interpolation can improve the realism of your animations and save your workflow some time. Find out how in this video tutorial.Understanding keyframe interpolation in Adobe After Effects will help bring your motion graphics to the next level. Not only will it give your animations more realism, it will also significantly speed up your workflow. In this tutorial, I’m going to show you how to use keyframe interpolation to give a simple animation more natural movement. In particular, I’m going to give a rocket graphic a more realistic takeoff. In the process, you’ll learn about the importance of spatial and temporal interpolation, and the difference between the two.Let’s get started.last_img read more

Time for Big Game Action

first_imgSouth Africa has the best bowling attack of the tournamentWhat a start to the quarter finals. Whoever could have imagined this would happen to any side in the competition at this stage. West Indies actually deserved what they got today. They were run over by the Pakistan juggernaut. They have won few games against top sides in the last few years and they just did not rise to the occasion today. What a far cry from the early 1980s when they were such a formidable side. Everyone says that West Indies rely on Chris Gayle and Kieron Pollard but they have not fired in this format of the game for a while now; I can’t understand how so much is still expected of them. I cannot understand what Darren Sammy’s role has been in this World Cup-as a batsman or bowler or captain?Pakistan, on the other hand, have lost just one game in the competition and therefore, are really in the zone. Shahid Afridi has been able to get the side together and has made this a very balanced side. The team has bowlers in abundance, their batting is strong and they have two quality all-rounders in Afridi and Abdul Razzaq. Pakistan will be a difficult side to beat for anyone, though I do not expect their semi-final match to come so easy as this one did.India and Australia is the big traffic game in this World Cup. This World Cup could mark the end of an era for Australian cricket, unless they can defy the odds and win a fourth consecutive title. They have been plodding along in this World Cup and even the minnows have put up 250-plus totals against them. I see Ricky Ponting struggling to find his form and that is good news for India. But, in Australia’s favour, they are big match players. You don’t see an Australian side choking at the death, they fight to the last ball. M.S. Dhoni’s worries must be to win the toss and put up a big score. For India, Harbhajan Singh needs to fire. Ponting will no doubt be urging his top order batsmen to go all out for singles and get those crucial six runs every over, without going for the risky shots. He will be wary of Zaheer Khan and Harbhajan, as they are the only two bowling match-winners India has at this moment. Brett Lee and Mitchell Johnson will try and blow India away with pace, but it’s not easy to do that on a flat track in Ahmedabad, especially when the batting order has players of the calibre of Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Yusuf Pathan and Dhoni. But then, this batting line-up has failed to bat its full 50 overs in three big matches this World Cup. India will have to set its targets a bit lower in the last 10 overs. They need to score a run a ball from the beginning rather than go for big shots from the first over and then slow down and try to catch up in the powerplays, losing crucial wickets in the process.advertisementPonting will no doubt want to settle some scores with India and this is a good chance for him. Dhoni has been under immense pressure of late and sometimes it has even got to him, as is evident from his below-parkeeping in the last few games, a fact that will not be lost upon the Australians. Both captains would like to go out winning in this World Cup, given the sheer talent and potential in their sides. Unfortunately, only one of these great teams will go through. My call is that it’s going to be India with the home advantage.South Africa are a highly balanced side. They are not one dimensional. In Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel, they have the best bowling attack of the tournament. Their spin department is looking good with Imran Tahir and Robin Peterson. Their batting order is a bit top heavy and although Graeme Smith seems out of touch, he needs to come good now. Watch out for De Villiers who may well become the batsman of the tournament. Their fielding is top-class and Smith will probably have fewer worries on his mind than the New Zealand captain.But the Kiwis are no pushovers. They have easily qualified for the quarters and beaten Pakistan quite comfortably in their group encounter. This is possibly the fittest side in the tournament and their batting order goes right up to the tail. In Brendon McCullum and Ross Taylor, they have two among the game’s cleanest hitters. New Zealand has the maximum number of all-rounders, and that fact alone can win them the World Cup. I don’t think Smith will be worried going into this game, given that South Africa have been tested in this tournament and have come out on top.advertisementThe Kiwis, on the other hand, will be diving, fielding and fighting to save every run, as they did against the Lankans in Mumbai. This promises to be an interesting game, and though I think South Africa are favourites to win, the New Zealand team is known for punching way beyond their weight, so the verdict is still out there.Playing Sri Lanka at home is tough work and England will have to produce something extraordinary to get past them. They have stumbled upon the quarter finals and cannot continue to play in the same fashion. They must forget about the past and start afresh. They have had a week’s rest and that should help. Apart from Andrew Strauss, none of their batsmen have played any innings of note, and that is a big worry. Eoin Morgan must rise to the occasion. England’s bowlers haven’t been putting sides under pressure and even minnows, Ireland and Bangladesh, were able to chase their 300-plus totals.The Lankans, on the other hand, have been playing percentage cricket. They have been going about their job in a businesslike manner. They play cricket the old-fashioned way. Their openers try and score briskly, and if they don’t get a good opening partnership, Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene get down to building the innings even if that means slowing down the game a bit. But closer to the last 15 overs, the Lankans rely on Angelo Mathews and the later order batsmen to get them to a respectable score. Even if they are 20 or so runs below-par, the Lankans are a formidable opponent, given their immense bowling strength. Bowlers such as Muttiah Muralitharan, Ajantha Mendis, and Lasith Malinga, helped by the excellent fielding, will put the pressure on England, and its batsmen must go after them. To make a match of it, England will have to come good with a big total if they win the toss. Although I rate this England team very highly on fighting capabilities, I must admit, beating Sri Lanka in Sri Lanka is a tad difficult.While I have outlined my favourite teams, the actual results could have the other four sides in the semis-that’s how close this World Cup is going to be. The team that wins the toss will more likely bat first; though the dew may have the opposite effect on the two captains in the finals. I can’t wait for the action to start. – Nasser Hussain is a former captain of the England cricket team. Syndicated by Sporting Excellencelast_img read more

2nd T20I: David Warner, Glenn Maxwell set record in Australia’s win against South Africa

first_imgA record stand from David Warner and Glenn Maxwell helped Australia secure a last-ball, five-wicket victory over South Africa in the second Twenty20 International at The Wanderers on Sunday.South Africa posted 204 for seven on a flat batting wicket and were on top when they reduced the tourists to 32-3 in their reply.Yet Warner (77 from 40 balls) and Maxwell (75 from 43) staged a remarkable fightback with a Twenty20 Australian record partnership for any wicket of 161 to take their side close to victory.Needing two from the final delivery of the innings from seamer Kagiso Rabada, Australia’s Mitchell Marsh bludgeoned the ball down the ground and was able to scramble the runs his side needed to level the three-game series at 1-1.Warner and Maxwell’s stand fell just short of the world record of 171 set by New Zealand’s Kane Williamson and Martin Guptill against Pakistan in January.The pair were particularly severe on leg-spinner Imran Tahir and seamer David Wiese, who went for 105 in their combined eight overs.The only consolation for South Africa was the successful return of fast bowler Dale Steyn (2-32 from four overs), who is trying to prove his fitness ahead of the World Twenty20 in India, which starts on Tuesday.The home side’s innings was anchored by Faf du Plessis, who smashed 79 from 41 balls, with fine cameos from Quinton de Kock (44) and David Miller (33).James Faulkner proved the pick of the Australian bowlers with 3-28 from his four overs.The final match of the three-game series will be played in Cape Town on Wednesday.advertisementlast_img read more

Australia Claims 2012 Trans Tasman Series

first_imgAustralia won the Mixed Open division two games to one as well as the Women’s Open division 2-1, while the Men’s took out their series 3-0.  Game OneMixed Open – Australia 8 defeated New Zealand 4Women’s Open – New Zealand 4 defeated Australia 3Men’s Open – Australia 5 defeated New Zealand 4Game TwoMixed Open – New Zealand 10 defeated Australia 9Women’s Open – Australia 4 defeated New Zealand 3Men’s Open – Australia 8 defeated New Zealand 5Game ThreeMixed Open – Australia 10 defeated New Zealand 8Women’s Open – Australia 7 defeated New Zealand 3Men’s Open – Australia 11 defeated New Zealand 3 To read all the match reports and stories from the event, please visit the Trans Tasman event website:www.transtasman.mytouchfooty.com To see all of the photos from the event, please visit the TFA Facebook page:traliawww.facebook.com/touchfootballaus To view all of the highlights from the event, please visit the TFA YouTube Channel:www.youtube.com/touchfootballaus RJ Media, the company professionally filming the 2012 Trans Tasman Series, have put together some fantastic highlights of day three of the series which can be viewed on the TFA YouTube channel. The video shows highlights from Australia’s three wins on day three of the series and is a taste of what we can expect to see in the final product. To view this clip, please visit the TFA YouTube channel:www.youtube.com/touchfootballauslast_img read more