Call made for Driving Licence Centre for Inishowen


first_imgDeputy Charlie McConalogue is calling for a National Driving Licence Service Centre for Inishowen. Drivers on the peninsula are having to drive to Letterkenny to the NDLS centre there apply for or renew their licences.Deputy McConalogue explained, “Since the new driving licence application was set up in 2013, motorists on the Inishowen peninsula have been driving to Letterkenny to apply for or renew their licences. While the NDLS system makes sense, there are only 34 centres in the country and counties like Donegal, which have a huge geographical spread, are at a major disadvantage”. The locations of the National Driving Licence Service (NDLS) centres were decided on the basis that 95% of the population would be within 50km of a centre. The Road Safety Authority says this is in line with other comparable services such as the NCT and Driver Theory Test.“There is an argument to be made for an NDLS centre in Inishowen as more than 50% of the population lives more than 50km from Letterkenny. In fact, residents in Carndonagh, Malin and Culdaff have to travel well over 60km to get to Letterkenny.“I highlighted the need for an NDLS centre in Inishowen in a recent Parliamentary Question to the Transport Minister; however Minister Ross refused to take responsibility for this issue and referred it to the Road Safety Authority.“This is a State service and the responsibility in my opinion ultimately lies with Minister Ross. The Public Services Centre in Carndonagh offers excellent facilities in the peninsula and would make an ideal location for a National Driving Licence Service centre. I will continue to press the Minister on this important issue”, concluded Deputy McConalogue. Call made for Driving Licence Centre for Inishowen was last modified: November 21st, 2016 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Mosquitos Are Water-Walking Champions


first_imgWe hate ’em, but in one sense we should admire them: mosquitos are the water-walking champions of the animal kingdom.  They even beat out water striders, reported Live Science and EurekAlert based on research from Physical Review E.  Science Daily wrote of “miraculous mosquito legs” and had a picture of the intricate fan-shaped superhydrophobic structures that allow mosquitos to comfortably stand on the surface of water like a cat on a feather pillow.    The legs of water striders can support 15 times their weight on water, but mosquito feet can support 23 times their weight.  “The secret to mosquito water walking appears to be feathery scales a few microns across that in turn are covered with nanoscopic ribbing, forming what the physicists have dubbed (in an apparent fit of excessive prefixing) a micronanostructure.”  That’s something to think about before swatting.    Like geckos, mosquitos take advantage of millions of tiny hairy pads that can adhere to about anything.  Speaking of geckos, PhysOrg reported a new super glue product that was inspired by gecko feet and mussels.  It’s called geckel (gecko + mussel) and has been shown to endure 1,000 repeated applications.  It even works underwater.  National Geographic also reported on the nature-inspired invention.You have to wonder how such intricate micro-machines like mosquitos got to be so nasty.  If they didn’t desire our blood and carry diseases, we would probably not notice them or mind them.  Did they have a beneficial purpose originally, like many other insects still do?  Did they pollinate plants or provide food and games for bats and toads?  Did something go wrong after the original creation?  That’s a question science cannot answer, but theologians can and do try to incorporate the observations of today’s world into the limited record of creation that has been revealed.  It’s clear from the Bible that God has on many occasions used his creatures as agents of judgment – but it is also clear that not every instance of a natural disaster or handicap is related to a specific sin by the victims.  Laymen might retreat to rhymes like: I don’t know why God made the fly, the mosquito, gnat or chigger; I’m just not sad, but indeed glad, he didn’t make them bigger.(Visited 12 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

My Life as a Freedom Fighter


first_img4 April 2003Letlapa Mphahlele’s “Child of This Soil” (Kwela) is a window on events during the turbulent years of the apartheid struggle. All the hardships and suffering, the nomadic lifestyle and the unpredictable lives the freedoms fighters lived are wrapped in this moving book.Mphahlele, a cadre of the Pan Africanist Congress’s Azanian People’s Liberation Army (Apla) – having gone into exile unsure of which political organisation to join – tells in this carefully crafted book his own story during this volatile period.In exile in his quest to get military training to allow him to fight for his land, Mphahlele makes it pellucid how precariously freedom fighters lived – moving from crevice to crevice across Africa in their quest to wrench their land from the lethal jaws of apartheid.Mphahlele found it saddening how people working towards a common goal could turn on one another, showing how power struggles and lack of co-ordination took their toll on organisations fighting colonialism.Mphahlele, after brief spells in Botswana and Lesotho jails, rose through the ranks within Apla, and with his colleagues lived like hunted animals for retaliating against the massacres perpetrated on blacks by the apartheid regime.When PAC leaders called for an end to armed struggle as apartheid neared its demise, Mphahlele was incensed. He defied the call and went underground after a spate of attacks on white targets.Mphahlele concedes in his book that the struggle for liberation has been won, but wonders if people got what they fought for – especially land. And he reminds his readers that “whites can even allow an African government to run the country so long as it doesn’t interfere with their grip on land. Do you think whites can give up without a fight?”Mphahlele rebuffs the claim that he was an enemy of the state, writing that “the deadliest beasts, miles from ubuntu [humaneness], are not in the shantytowns – they are in the boardrooms of multinational companies and on the stolen farmlands”.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Youth get it on campaign to fight graft


first_imgYoung kids with their hands in the air showing their clean from corrupt acivities. (Image: Public Service Accountability Monitor)A campaign by Corruption Watch is calling on young people to commit to taking responsibility for their actions and to stop corruption by publicly announcing “My hands are clean”.Corruption Watch, a graft-fighting watchdog, says it is urging people to publicly announce their positive stand against corruption and join the organisation’s team of corruption fighters. These people expose corruption where they see it, but are also willing to monitor their own behaviour before holding others to account.Writing in the organisation’s 2014 annual report, board chairman Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane explained the need to put an end to corruption for the wellbeing of the nation. “The pervasiveness of corruption in our country… is robbing our youth of their rightful inheritance. Corruption is insidious and corrosive, and the damage that it wreaks today will be felt well into the future by those who had no part in it, or at least are relatively free from blame,” he said.In its campaign, Corruption Watch urges people to participate in a nomination challenge: take a selfie of your hands and nominate your friends to do the same. Using the hashtag #MyHandsAreClean or #MHAC, post your selfies on social media sites Twitter and Facebook, as well as on Google+.#MyHandsAreClean is a response to the growing awareness of how corruption affects young people, says the organisation.The step by step process to participating in the campaign. (Image: Corruption Watch)At the launch of the campaign in February, people spotted taking part online locally included Justice Project SA chairman Howard Dembovsky and Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi.Dembovsky said: “The moment people stop paying bribes, whether it is to get out of something they did or didn’t do, is the moment they start curbing corruption. If you pay a bribe and you weren’t drinking, the same traffic officer will take a bribe from a drunk driver who, in turn, puts your life in danger on the road.”Vavi shared a similar sentiment, adding that corruption was at a “worrying” level. “We need to start collaborating at all positions of society because if we freely participate in small corruption, it leads the way to bigger corruption,” said the trade unionist.The campaign’s social media wall updates in real time the responses from Twitter, Google+ and Facebook, says Corruption Watch. “So far, we’ve received much-appreciated support from, among others, Transparency International chapters in Pakistan, Cambodia, France, Germany and more, Yusuf Abramjee and Crime Line here at home, NGOs, Cosatu, dozens of ordinary people, as well as the departments of Home Affairs, and Arts and Culture.”INVOLVING THE YOUTHCorruption Watch believes young people are a major factor in getting the scales to tip in favour of those trying to stop the scourge. “Our youth campaign aims to educate youth about corruption and encourage them to raise their voices and take action against this problem,” it says.The organisation is no stranger to youth engagement. On 9 December 2014, International Anti-Corruption Day, it released an anti-corruption song, performed by up-and-coming singer Fiesta Black, that has garnered substantial support.It has also begun engaging with about 30 young leaders regarding their experiences and perceptions of corruption, as well as on finding solutions on how to combat it.“This diverse group of young leaders, drawn from across South Africa, is made up of chief executive officers, student representative council presidents from universities and colleges, members of debating teams in secondary schools and tertiary education, and youth participants in leadership programmes and community-based organisations. This forum of young leaders will become the face of the Corruption Watch Youth Campaign and will inform our continuing strategy on engaging South Africa’s young people,” explains executive director David Lewis.“We’re calling on the youth to commit to take responsibility for their own actions, as well as encourage others to come clean with any kind of corruption they may have committed.”#MyHandsAreClean from corruption @PsycheDALIAc nominated me & I now nominate @AndreasFares @MohabRBeats @SummerNazif pic.twitter.com/qnzPrUHNdo— Farah (@CynicalJoyy) March 6, 2015Corruption Watch has also tackled corruption in the driving licence sector by teaming up with FunDza Literacy Trust to publish a seven-chapter short story about corruption in the sector affecting the youth.The drama, called Licensed to Lie, is available on the group’s website and on the Mxit app. By allowing young people to identify with the characters, the story teaches them about how to identify and resist corruption when they apply for their driving licences. There are two more stories scheduled for the first half of this year, highlighting corruption in the police and education sectors.No one opposes corruption more than Batman. I may not be Batman, but #MyHandsAreClean. Nominated by @TheCheif_ pic.twitter.com/Jynj4pmT1M— Duke of Burgershire (@TheAhmedRaafat) March 6, 2015last_img read more

Does Your Startup Really Need Those Game Mechanics?


first_imgWhy Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Tags:#Analysis#start I’m a fairly competitive person. I like to win. And thanks to many hours spent in front of the screen, I find myself pretty motivated when I see an opportunity to “level up.” But that being said, I still question the rush lately to add “game mechanics” to every new product and experience.As we’ve writtenbefore, the arguments for doing so are compelling. Game mechanics can be fun and rewarding. They can increase user engagement and can aid user adoption, referral, and retention. But does the addition of levels, leader-boards, and virtual trophies necessarily lead to a better user experience? Of course not.In a recent blog post titled, “Why You Should NOT Integrate Game Mechanics Into Your Service,” Gaurav Mishra, CEO of 2020Social points to the ways in which the pressure to add points and badges can obscure some of the other important considerations when developing an application or service. Mishra quotes Pascal Rettig who argues that we are confusing game mechanics – which are really about gameplay – with mechanics meant to change user behavior surrounding the product. “Where you should focus your efforts to avoid launching a dud as we roll through the game mechanics hype cycle,” says Rettig, “is on making the core of whatever system you are building more game-like (put simply, fun) and not just toss a thin-veneer of simple game mechanics around the outside.” You don’t want any game mechanics you implement to distract your users away from your core service. And you don’t want to just bow to the pressure to include badges and mayorships simply because others have incorporated them successfully. And you don’t want to assume that just because you’ve incorporated game mechanics that somehow you’ve made your app playful and fun.White label game mechanics service Bunchball respond in the comments on Mishra’s post with these insights:Have good core content. If users have no reason to come back to your site without game mechanics, they’re going to have no reason to come back with game mechanics.Have clear business objectives that you’re using game mechanics to drive.Apply game mechanics in a contextually appropriate manner for your community. Farmville and Stack Overflow both use game mechanics, but different ones, and in very different ways, that are appropriate for their respective communities.Iterate & Evolve. You’re not going to get it right the first time, and you’re going to learn from your users.What do you think? Do you find game mechanics engaging? And if so, which products do you think are the most effective and innovative when it comes to integrating game mechanics into their design? Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Related Posts center_img audrey watters 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…last_img read more

Here’s how self-driving cars could impact your city’s planning


first_imgHow IoT Will Play an Important Role in Traffic … Surveillance at the Heart of Smart Cities Related Posts Tags:#autonomous cars#driverless cars#Internet of Things#IoT#Self-Driving#Smart Cities#smart city#urban planning IT Trends of the Future That Are Worth Paying A…center_img How Connected Communities Can Bolster Your Busi… As the future of self-driving cars continues to evolve, many of the largest tech companies, auto industries, and city planners around the world are working to prepare for the impacts that autonomous cars will have across all sectors.Since transportation is a central piece of our society, various thought-leaders and industry experts are working together to ensure public safety and find a way to have future technological advancements improve the economy.See also: What is the future of self-driving regulation?Across the related businesses, hundreds of billions of dollars is being invested in research and development. This investment of both technology and assets are looking to bring the promise of a cleaner, safer, and more efficient method to travel.How autonomous cars could change policySeveral groups across the world are voicing their concerns on how autonomous cars will impact societies and the public good. Everything from social equality, cyber security, and even how our food is farmed will be changed by emerging technology associated with autonomous vehicles.Increased urban sprawlAutonomous vehicles will allow individuals to get more work done as they commute to and from the office since they won’t have to spend their time and energy doing something other than driving.This will make longer commuting less stressful so that we could see more vehicle traffic in downtown areas.Cities are witnessing an inversion of investment. As individuals and jobs return to downtowns, the demands to replace surface parking lots with mid and high density, mixed-use development increases.Autonomous vehicles will propel the shrinking importance of suburban areas since the need to be located within proximity of downtown epicenters will not be needed.As more people move out of suburbia, these areas will witness economic depressions and will have a difficult time maintaining basic amenities for remaining residents.Increased parking construction footprintAs more people commute longer distances to work in their autonomous vehicles, cities will be pressured to develop larger and more parking areas to accommodate the increased traffic.Parking is not an option for major cities, and providing convenient parking is a central focus for cities like Houston, TX, Little Rock, AR, and Washington, DC.These cities have allocated more than half their land area to highways, streets, and parking areas. This type of land allocation will have wide-reaching repercussions on the environment, low-income communities, and cultural development in the vicinity.Shifting commerce & service developmentAs autonomous car technology continues to evolve, many of the largest automakers are placing their bets that future vehicles will run on electricity and stored in onboard batteries.This exciting advancement will reduce America’s dependency on foreign oil for remote fueling stations, but it will also change the way cities zone construction sites that will support city transportation.In place of stand-alone gas stations, many parking lots will integrate electric refueling stations. Unlike the single purpose asphalt resting spots of today’s parking lots, future parking areas will double as recharging centers.See also: Ford patents removable steering wheel for self-driving carsCharging stations and induction pads in on-street spaces are going to be a vital part of the utility infrastructure of the near future.The land use implication here is that on-street parking will continue to supply separation between moving cars and bicyclists and pedestrians.Improved city aesthetics, pedestrian safety & air qualityAs autonomous cars account for the majority of vehicles on our public roads, many city planners will be able to use more aesthetically appealing development plans.This will not only incorporate more trees and other elements since planners won’t have to anticipate the human error. Also, urban planners can also integrate designs that are pedestrian friendly.Air quality in our cities will also improve once fossil fuels are now not a portion of the exhaust system, improving the environmental surroundings and people’s health.Self-driving the future of urban planning?The future of city planning looks bright, and the evolution of self-driving car technology means that our cities will see dramatic impacts moving forward.It is our responsibility to ensure that our local lawmakers are setting proactive regulations to protect public safety and keep up with the ever-changing environment of emerging technology. Chris Giarratanalast_img read more

Centre expects cooperation from Mamata government: Rajnath


first_imgWhile maintaining that that there is no scope for “confrontation in a healthy democracy”, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday said that the Centre is expecting cooperation from the West Bengal government.During his visit to Kolkata, Mr. Singh, who interacted with party workers and journalists, was careful to avoid any direct criticism of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and her government.Asked to comment on the law and order situation in the State as highlighted by several Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders, Mr. Singh said that law and order is a State subject.“The Centre will extend all help to control any kind of violence but it is for the State government to ensure that law and order is maintained,” Mr. Singh said.last_img read more

Sachin Tendulkar deserves Bharat Ratna: Dhanraj Pillay


first_imgFormer hockey captain and Olympian Dhanraj Pillay on Wednesday joined the increasing chorus of voices demanding that batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar be given the ‘Bharat Ratna’ by the Indian government. “Sachin certainly deserves to be conferred the Bharat Ratna for the way he has been playing for the last 22 years. He was the mastermind of our World Cup victory,” said Pillay, who has represented India in four Olympics and hockey World Cups. Pillay, who spoke on the sidelines of the function to release veteran photographer Mohan Bane’s pictorial book on the Beijing Olympics with English captions, The Gold Wall of India, also believed that Tendulkar should play in the next World Cup in 2015. “He’s as fit as a 19 or 20 year old and he should play in the next World Cup too,” said Pillay about Tendulkar who would be turning 38 on April 24. Union Energy Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde also said Tendulkar deserved to be honoured with the Bharat Ratna. “Just like Donald Bradman, Tendulkar has brought happiness to the cricket fans of the world with his batsmanship. He deserves to be conferred with the Bharat Ratna,” said Shinde who was among the dignitaries present at the book release event. With inputs from PTIlast_img read more