The images on the right are original images of Richard Nixon and Winona Ryder. Most people have a better chance of recognizing a person with eyebrows and no eyes (center), rather than with eyes and no eyebrows (left). Credit: Sinha, et al. One of the most challenging tasks for computer vision researchers is to design a system that can automatically recognize individual faces. Humans, who can perform this task in as little as 50 milliseconds—almost unconsciously, it seems—may even be pre-programmed from birth. But while computers currently lag behind their biological counterparts, scientists hope that one day, machines will not only equal the human ability of facial recognition, but exceed and, in turn, improve human visual processes. Because humans generally do not have a problem recognizing faces under varying illumination, with chaotic background noise, or at long distances, computer systems may benefit from learning the mechanisms of the brain. As research has suggested, our brains have likely devoted a specialized neural resource solely for facial recognition—perhaps computers could use a similar “brain region” to process faces. But then again, maybe computers will find an even better way.“Too much generalization can prove to be a short-coming in situations where individuals are actively trying to deceive and adopt other people’s identities,” explained Sinha. “In these circumstances, a detail-oriented scheme, say examining the precise pattern of irises or the exact distances between facial features, might be more appropriate, despite being implausible as human strategies.”Citation: Sinha, Pawan, Balas, Benjamin, Ostrovsky, Yuri, and Russell, Richard. “Face Recognition by Humans: Nineteen Results All Computer Vision Researchers Should Know About.” Proceedings of the IEEE. Vol. 94, No. 11, November 2006.By Lisa Zyga, Copyright 2007 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. “The human brain has an amazing ability to recognize faces,” scientist Richard Russell of Harvard told PhysOrg.com. “It would be a waste not to learn from it, especially since there are no other computer strategies so far that come close to the kind of face recognition performance the human brain exhibits.”Along with Russell, MIT researchers Pawan Sinha, Benjamin Balas, and Yuri Ostrovsky all have a strong interest in computer science but spend most of their time studying the human brain. In their recent study, “Face Recognition by Humans: Nineteen Results All Computer Vision Researchers Should Know About” in the Proceedings of the IEEE, the group compiles 19 vignettes of how humans recognize faces. Explore further For humans, the scientists explain that these abilities may be due to the nature of how the brain processes human faces: facial features, unlike many other objects in our world, are processed holistically rather than piecemeal (Result 4). However, the brains of young children may utilize a piecemeal strategy, which progresses to holistic by the age of about 10 years (Result 16).The single facial feature that is most vital for recognition is a bit of a surprise—it’s not the eyes, but rather the eyebrows that people seem to depend upon most for identification (Result 5). And although it makes sense that facial shape plays an important role in recognition, research shows that skin pigmentation—even slight shade differences—plays at least as important a role as shape (Result 9). These areas, Sinha et al. suggest, might receive valuable attention from computer designers.“The primary emphasis in the last few years has been security: finding terrorists and criminals, securing access to sensitive physical locations,” said Ostrovsky. “But there are many other fun or practical applications as well: finding your friend in a crowded stadium or automated labeling of celebrities or politicians in news broadcasts. Another big future application is instant personalization of settings for your electronic devices (e.g., computer, mobile phone, ‘smart home’). We do a lot of things differently depending on who is around us, and electronic devices should do the same without our having to explicitly login every time.” Because the adult brain processes faces holistically, it is easier for most people to recognize these two faces in the right image, where they are misaligned. They are Woody Allen and Oprah Winfrey. Credit: Sinha, et al. Research shows that humans can recognize familiar faces even with high degradations. From left to right: Michael Jordan, Woody Allen, Goldie Hawn, Bill Clinton, Tom Hanks, Saddam Hussein, Elvis Presley, Jay Leno, Dustin Hoffman, Prince Charles, Cher, and Richard Nixon. The average recognition rate at this resolution is one-half. Credit: Pawan, Sinha, et al. Neuroplasticity: Why is the visual cortex involved in language processing in blind individuals? Citation: For computer scientists exploring face recognition, the question is ‘who?’ (2007, February 7) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2007-02-scientists-exploring-recognition.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Although they are careful to point out that vision systems would not “slavishly imitate” humans’ perceptions, the scientists also include pointers on how each of the 19 results could influence the design of an automatic face-recognition system.One interesting overall impression from the research is that humans do a remarkable job of identifying faces, even under many kinds of extreme degradations. For example, humans can recognize familiar faces in very low-resolution images (Result 1). The scientists speculate that we have learned to do this because we must often recognize people at a distance and in motion. Unfamiliar faces, however, were more difficult with degradations—which may explain why it’s difficult to identify unknown suspects in a police line-up (Result 2).Further, we don’t need to see every feature of a face to identify a person, and we can quite easily recognize faces with heavy distortion along the length or width axis (or in funhouse mirrors) (Result 6). “Human recognition not only performs well under severely degraded conditions, but even under the best circumstances our visual system doesn’t seem to bother storing perfect models of the objects we see,” explained Balas. “Recognition may be less a problem of finding ways to recover the world perfectly from the image, and more a problem of finding quick and dirty solutions that work most of the time.”
© 2012 Phys.org Qualcomm’s Halo technology will be fitted on up to ten electric vehicles; this is a wireless technology that Qualcomm purchased last year from the University of Auckland’s HaloIPT. The Halo system, consisting of a charging terminal, flat pad and receiving pad on the car, transmits kilowatts of electricity over the air. There is a charging pad on which EV owners park their vehicles. The pad is activated by the presence of the vehicle, sending a charge through the air gap between the ground pad and the receiving pad. Halo uses electro-magnetic induction to transfer 3, 7 or even 20 kW of power between two coils. Transmission rates are reported as similar to what can be achieved with a traditional cable charger. Qualcomm claims that energy losses are small and as a result the charging method’s efficiency of 90 percent is comparable to conventional charging with a cable.All of the cars chosen for the trial are fully electric. The trial will be ongoing for about two years. In the first phase, the system will be used on vehicles in controlled environments, with ten to 20 charging pads, to help evaluate Halo’s commercial viability. A second round of trials will involve Renault in 2013. Announcing its participation, Jacques Hebrard, vice president of Energy and Environment Advanced Projects director at Renault, said Renault’s entry in the WEVC London trial will complement Renault’s European research and development project with other partners to demonstrate wireless inductive charging of EVS “in a public environment with a high level of performance and safety.” This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. (Phys.org) — Renault and Qualcomm this week signed a Memorandum of Understanding that they will cooperate on work at the upcoming London trial of Qualcomm Halo Wireless Electric Vehicle Charging (WEVC) technology, an event to take place in a few months. Preparations underway for the WEVC trial involve an assembly of government authorities and businesses, to install and test wireless electric cars. UK company Delta Motorsport, an automotive and motorsport engineering consultancy, has agreed to participate in trials carried out on specially adapted E4 coupes, and France-based Renault will use its vehicles too. Qualcomm’s stated goal is to make the charging of electric vehicles simple and effortless, but the two-phase London trials will also provide some much-needed answers by industry players and consumers beyond ease and comfort. The trial will help to evaluate the commercial viability of wireless charging of electric vehicles; to better understand issues in integrating WEVC technology into EVs; the deployment of WEBC in a “megacity”; and to get user feedback on using WEVC-enabled EVs. Citation: Renault joins London wireless EV charging trial (2012, July 26) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-07-renault-london-wireless-ev-trial.html Qualcomm’s HaloIPT tech brings wireless charging for EVs Explore further
For the first time, researchers have used genetic algorithms to reduce quantum errors in digital quantum simulations. Credit: U. Las Heras et al. ©2016 American Physical Society This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Now for the first time, researchers Urtzi Las Heras et al. at the University of the Basque Country in Bilbao, Spain, have applied genetic algorithms to digital quantum simulations and shown that genetic algorithms can reduce quantum errors, and may even outperform existing optimization techniques. The research, which is published in a recent issue of Physical Review Letters, was led by Ikerbasque Prof. Enrique Solano and Dr. Mikel Sanz in the QUTIS group.In general, quantum simulations can provide a clearer picture of the dynamics of systems that are impossible to understand using conventional computers due to their high degree of complexity. Whereas computers calculate the behavior of these systems, quantum simulations approximate or “simulate” the behavior.As a quantum technology, digital quantum simulations face many of the same challenges that confront the quantum computing field in general. One such challenge is information loss due to decoherence, which occurs when a quantum system interacts with its environment. In order to protect quantum simulations against this loss, scientists use quantum error correction protocols, which provide a kind of back-up by storing information in entangled states of multiple qubits using quantum gates.Storing information in an entangled state is a highly complex undertaking in the context of quantum error correction. For a system with just 4 qubits and 7 gates, the number of possible gate arrangements climbs into the trillions. Optimization techniques are used to sift through all of these designs and find the architecture that minimizes the error. In the new study, the researchers demonstrated that genetic algorithms can identify gate designs for digital quantum simulations that outperform designs identified by standard optimization techniques, resulting in the lowest levels of digital quantum errors achieved so far. Citation: Genetic algorithms can improve quantum simulations (2016, June 23) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-06-genetic-algorithms-quantum-simulations.html © 2016 Phys.org Besides reducing errors due to decoherence, genetic algorithms can also reduce two other types of errors in digital quantum simulations. One type is the digital error created by the reduced number of steps used for approximating the algorithms. Another type of error arises from the imperfections in the construction of each of the gates. As the researchers explain, one reason why genetic algorithms perform so well is their adaptability. Just like natural selection adapts to changes in environmental conditions, genetic algorithms continually adapt to different constraints imposed by different quantum technologies. “Genetic algorithms are characterized by different features: adaptability and robustness,” Solano told Phys.org. “Their adaptability allows for a flexible and clever technique to solve different problems in different quantum technologies and platforms. The robustness of the algorithm yields solutions that are resilient against errors, which allows us to cancel different error sources. [Due to these characteristics,] our work provides a new flexible tool in quantum simulations that allows us to reduce the required physical resources while keeping the operation precision. It also reduces the total decoherence and digital error by seizing on the different unavoidable error sources to mutually cancel each other.”Genetic algorithms already have been used in a wide variety of applications, such as finding the most efficient electrical circuit design, finding the mirror orientation that focuses the maximum amount of sunlight onto a solar collector, and designing antennas that are optimally tuned for detecting specific types of signals.With help from genetic algorithms, future quantum simulations are expected to be useful for gaining a better understanding of complex physics, designing novel materials and chemicals, and solving problems in machine learning and artificial intelligence.”These techniques could be used to solve problems that require resources unaffordable for present and future digital quantum simulations and gate-based quantum computing, by reducing and optimizing them,” Solano said. “Also these techniques could easily decompose a problem into quantum gates adapted to different quantum platforms and quantum technologies. Finally, these techniques could also be applied to different problems in quantum computation and quantum information, such as the design of improved qubits, for instance. Needless to say, quantum simulations and quantum computing aim at the big picture: artificial intelligence, pattern recognition, design of new materials and chemicals, solving complex problems in aerodynamics, and quantum field theories, among many others.” Google combines two main quantum computing ideas in one computer Journal information: Physical Review Letters (Phys.org)—Inspired by natural selection and the concept of “survival of the fittest,” genetic algorithms are flexible optimization techniques that can find the best solution to a problem by repeatedly selecting for and breeding ever “fitter” generations of solutions. Explore further More information: U. Las Heras et al. “Genetic Algorithms for Digital Quantum Simulations.” Physical Review Letters. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.116.230504
Anyone who has been on the internet lately knows that cuteness can get weird: lemurs with Keane-painting eyes, infants dressed as peapods, cats with toast on their heads. The internet offers up achingly sweet “cute porn” because those images grab our attention. There’s something almost aggressive about the way we crave cuteness. A social psychologist named Oriana Aragón, who was then teaching at Yale, happened to be watching. In the days that followed, she found herself pondering a subject that doesn’t usually receive much attention from the scientific community: cuteness. Read the whole story: The New York Times They couldn’t understand. And the truth is, I couldn’t either. Why are most people born with the urge that drives them to have children and others, like me, not? I began to wonder if science had an answer. Several years ago, the actress Leslie Bibb perched next to Conan O’Brien’s desk and riffed about a baby so cute that it drove her crazy. She pantomimed her extreme reaction to the infant by gritting her teeth and clenching her fists. — One night back in the 1990s, I dreamed that I’d been stabbed in the stomach. When I bolted awake, pain sent me hurtling to the bathroom where I threw up. It felt as if a creature inside my belly was trying to claw its way out. —
With a vision to provide young dancers with an eclectic opportunity so that true talent nurtures and pans into expanding horizons, the dance community have come together to observe the World Dance Day. Propounded by dancer/ choreographer Geeta Chandran, the event will present young dancers from Natya Vriksha celebrating the spirit and devotion to the art form.This festival is organised in collaboration with the Ministry of Culture, UNESCO, Sangeet Natak Akademi, NTPC and India International Centre. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Expanding over two days, the first day will feature an open-house seminar discussing what is classical in dance and will conclude with two performances (Kathak and Kutiyattam each). The second day will witness the young dancers festival by putting up Bharatnatyam and Sattriya performances by Aditi Balasubramanian and Anwesa Mahanta respectively.Other artists participating include names like Swati Sinha, an ‘A’ grade artist of Doordarshan she has performed in major cultural events such as Khajuraho Dance Festival and Spic Macay. Aditi Balasubramanian is touted to be a Bharatnatyam child prodigy, she is merely 12 years old. Lastly Anwesa Mahanta, has been an active performer since 2001 presenting Sattriya in its solo form.DETAILWhere- India International Centre Auditorium 40, Max Mueller Marg, Lodi Estate When- 27 and 28 AprilTimings- 3.30 pm – 6.30 pm
Desires Unlimited, a Delhi based theatre group, is soon presenting the city’s first classical theatre festival titled Epoch – A Classic Theatre Festival. Commencing on 8 March, the festival will showcase the group’s flagship plays which include 3, Sakina Manzil and Rope, that are based on a bygone era.Epoch is set in a month, which is known for its significance be it historic or social. The festival captures two prominent yet classical themes of the month of March: ‘spring’ and Idus Martii (Ides of March). The Gandhian love story based in a pre-independent India, 3, Sakina Manzil promises to be refreshing like the spring. While, the play Rope which is a classic murder story, resonates with the touted Ides of March known popularly for assassination of Julius Caesar by Brutus. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The play 3, Sakina Manzil which will be staged on 8 and 9 March is set in pre-independence era when the country was fighting for its independence, when the world was being ravaged by World War II, and the Hindi film Industry was learning to stand on its feet. Amidst all this, in an old apartment building of Bombay, 3, Sakina Manzil, a love story of two silent lovers Shashi and Comrade Shashi unfolds. Torn apart by destiny, they tread different paths only to meet again after five decades. The play explores how people despite the crisis of their times, managed to fall in love and sustain it over the years, no matter the distance or time that separated them. The other play Rope being staged on 15 and 16 March, questions how we view murder. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixDaniel and Sunny, graduates from St. Georges College Mussorie, fancy the notion of murder being an art. Influenced by Nietzsche and their own Prof. Kohli’s theories about superior beings, they consider themselves superior to their innocent classmate and strangle him. The two then call for a party and serve food from the chest that contains Dilip’s corpse. To add to the thrill, the guests include Dilip’s relatives, friends and Prof. Kohli. The plot thickens when Sunny starts to crack-up under pressure and Prof. Kohli begins to suspect. Desires Unlimited, established in 2006, is a production house for digital audio visual content. It was co-founded by a group of engineers cum artists from IIT Delhi. Though IITians are known for their Silicon Valley startups, these youngsters opted for a different playground all together. The group has created corporate films for brands such as Britania, Samsung, and Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC).WHEN: 8-16 MarchWHERE: LTG Auditorium
As you enjoy winter this year, don’t forget the plight of the Jammu and Kashmir people who were affected by the recent flood. To ‘Spread the warmth’ and extend a supportive gesture, DLF Place, Saket in association with Cequin Ngo presents Spread The Warmth campaign. A social endeavour to bring back the glory of Kashmir by facilitating the victims with warm clothes, blankets, shoes and other useful materials.DLF Place, Saket is also holding an art exhibition in association with Delhi Street Art group. The art group is also be showcasing live painting sessions till 20 November at the centre court Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’of the mall.The campaign was flagged off by Sara Pilot (Chairperson, Cequin) along with other well known faces of New Delhi like Jai Madan, Promila Bahri, Viraj Bahri, Jayashree Raghuram and others. All of them came forward to donate generously in order to support this noble cause. Café Delhi Heights, treated guests with delectable refreshments, appreciating their valued effort. Benu Sehgal, Mall Head, Mall Management DLF Place, Saket said ‘The difficulty of the people of Jammu and Kashmir has always been a matter of concern, it’s just the floods have only made it worse. We urge people to take a pledge to contribute as much as they can to keep the needy warm and to bring a smile on their faces this winter. We feel it’s a great opportunity for everyone to do their bit for their well being. Each drop of support counts for them to settle back after this massive disaster’.Where : DLF Place, Saket When: 20 November
Kolkata: A fire broke out at a multi-storeyed building on AJC Bose road near Mullick Bazar on Wednesday afternoon triggering panic in the area.The fire took place on the third floor of the building, where spare parts of vehicles were stored. No casualty or injury has been reported in the incident so far.Locals spotted smoke billowing out of the building at around 12 pm and reported the matter to the fire brigade. The area was soon covered in black smoke and people started running from one place to the other for shelter. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsSome people, who were in the other floor of the building, panicked and left the building. After being informed, the fire brigade officials rushed to the spot and as many as ten fire-tenders were pressed into action to douse the flames. Police cordoned off the entire area to check any untoward incidents. Moulali bound vehicles were diverted due to fire incident. There was a huge traffic jam in the area. The situation became normal a couple of hours later. Locals also took part in the rescue operation. They rescued the people who were inside the building and removed them to prevent any accident. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killed They initially tried to restrict the fire from spreading to other rooms. The fire fighters later restricted the fire from spreading into the adjacent buildings.The situation was brought under control within one hour. According to a preliminary investigation, police and fire officials suspect that some inflammable materials might have been stored which aggravated the situation. The exact cause of the fire and the extent of the damage are yet to be ascertained. A detailed probe has been initiated in this regard.
In an endeavour to evolve the food and beverage industry in India, Lite Bite Foods with HMSHost will together bid to acquire the rights, to launch and operate International and domestic food and beverage outlets at retail destinations like airport, train stations and highways across India. HMSHost is the world’s largest provider of food and beverage (F&B) services.The joint venture will operate under the name Lite Bite Foods HMSHost and will be based out of Gurgaon. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’With HMSHost’s presence across the dynamic F&B markets in the world, it will bring tremendous opportunities for Lite Bite Foods to enter new markets.The joint venture will operate under the name Lite Bite Foods HMSHost and will be based in Gurgaon. While HMS will own 51
KolkatA: Bidhannagar Police has introduced an app based booking service at Kolkata airport for passengers.On Monday, Deputy Commissioner (headquarters) Amit Javalgi informed that from now on passengers would be able to book a yellow or white and blue no refusal taxi in advance.According to the officials, till Sunday one could only book a taxi by being present in person at the prepaid taxi counter near 3C gate.To make the process more convenient and user-friendly, high ranked police officials came up with the idea of this app. People can now download the app named ‘Bidhannagar Police Prepaid Taxi’ from Google play store.”Following the installation of the app, a person need to register himself by putting information such as name, mobile number, e-mail address on the app. After successful completion of the registration process, one can book a taxi whenever he or she needs to. Payment can be made through net banking, credit or debit cards. There is no need to wait in a queue,” said an official from Bidhannagar Police.Following a booking, one needs to scan a QR code which will be available at a kiosk opposite to 4A-4B gate. After the scanning process, one will get the vehicle registration number on which they have to board. At present, taxis make enter inside the airport terminal through a Radio Frequency Identification Device (RFID) scanner which is installed beside Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International (NSCBI) Airport traffic guard.The passengers will get the taxi registration number after the taxi goes through the RFID scanner.
Saris, salwar kameez and many more traditional attires, that have adorned the bodies of women over the years, are the resultant of the hard labour that is put in by skilled weavers and artisans. Colourful and creative weaves and textiles, that are created after the weaver waves its magic wand over them, are on display at ‘Kairi 2016’ which is a summer textile and saree exhibition. The event which has been organised by Delhi Crafts Council, is being held from March 10 to 12 at Aga Khan Hall in the national Capital. The exhibition is showcasing the innate talent of the skilled weavers from different states of the country. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The exhibited materials are from diferent parts of the country, which showcase their respective traditions. The likes of Khadi, Ajrakh, Bandhani, Kalamkari, Banaras weaves, Ikat, Kota, Maheshwari, Chanderi, Bagh prints, Tribal weaves from Bastar, South India weaves and prints from Jaipur etc are on display. Over 5000 visitors and 20 exhibitors have displayed their range of textiles in the exhibition. The participating exhibitors are Govardhan Panika, Kartik, Asgar Ali, Suresh and Malkha and many more. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with Netflix“Kairi is a special event for us at the Delhi Crafts Council. We present weavers from across India, many of whom have never showcased their textiles in Delhi before. “The Indian textile industry has always been dynamic and has a huge potential to create a remarkable presence all across the world. We have witnessed massive response from the buyers. “We believe that it is our onus to nurture Indian craftsmanship and are happy to provide them with a platform to reach a wider market”, said Kamayani Jalan, Treasurer, Delhi crafts council. Delhi Crafts Council is a part of a movement towards revitalisation and promotion of traditional Indian crafts. A registered voluntary nonprofit organisation, it was founded in 1967 by the late Kamladevi Chattopadhyaya. It is affiliated to Crafts Council of India in Chennai and is part of a larger network of regional councils. Broadly, the council concerns itself with securing a better life for traditional crafts persons by preserving and promoting their skills.
Have you ever thought of what you can do, but you do not have to do just for the sake of it? Well if you have, then you might give it a thought of visiting the land of chocolate. Switzerland Tourism launched their Winter Campaign for this year with their new tagline ‘You can… but you don’t have to’, and their Summer Campaign – ‘Nature wants you back’ for the upcoming year recently in the national Capital.With the growing demand in adventure sports among Indian tourists, Switzerland is a hotspot for such adrenalin rush. One can choose from skiing, sledging and snowboarding in the snow covered Alps, while someone who is looking for a rather leisurely vacation, can opt for a relaxed trip soaking in the beauty of the breath-taking scenery and serenity of the country. Christmas markets, open air hot springs and igloo stays are also available during the winder for the visitor looking for pure white relaxation. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfWith places like Zurich, Basel, Ticino and Matterhorn to visit, and the daily Swissair flights from Delhi and Mumbai, one can experience the blend of three cultures in Swtizerland as the country is surrounded by France, Germany and Italy. The Summer Campaign will be headed by Bollywood star Ranveer Singh as the brand ambassador of Switzerland Tourism.The summer focus for the campaign as well, will be packed with an array of activities like sky-diving, wakeboarding, canyoning combined with Switzerland’s best touristic and nature highlights. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveClaudio Zemp, Director – India, Switzerland Tourism, said, “In India we see people getting more adventurous these days. They do not only want to take a cable car up a mountain and take pictures but also want that thrill and rush which one gets while doing adventure sports. With a versatile and energetic personality like Ranveer Singh on board, we would like to showcase that Switzerland is not only about scenic beauty but also has many activities and adventures to offer to the more experiential Indian traveller. Winter is coming up and it is an absolutely beautiful time to visit Switzerland. One can enjoy various winter activities and explore their hidden passion for adventure with sports such as skiing, snow-shoe trekking, tobogganing. Ranveer’s next trip is going to be in winter.” Ritu Sharma, Deputy Director, Switzerland Tourism India, said, “Our new campaign is all about telling people that holidays in Switzerland can be anything that you want – there are lots of options for adventures and activities both in winter and in summer but if you would rather have a more relaxing holiday that’s absolutely possible too. Although Indians love to go on a vacation during the summers, we do hope for a change after this campaign. Apart from the picturesque natural beauty, Switzerland is also a complete package for families and honeymooners who are not only looking at a relaxing vacation but also crave some adventure.”When stepping into a country like Switzerland, it is not just the natural beauty one has to admire, but also the public transport. For the convenience of tourists, they have ‘Swiss travel pass’ which is an all-in-one ticket for all transportations in the country. Travelling around town one might like to visit the FIFA World Football Museum. Basel’s tri-border region at the Rhine harbour marks the meeting point between Switzerland, Germany and France that makes the city unmistakably lively and innovative. Animal lovers can also take a walk with the penguins in the Basel zoo every morning! To witness a little bit of Italy in Switzerland one can head over to Ticino which will be launching the Gotthard base tunnel- the longest tunnel in the world, in December. How many hands up for a winter trip to Switzerland?
Kolkata: A 10-year-old girl died and an elderly woman was injured in two separate road accidents in the state on Tuesday.The first incident occurred at Judapani area of Dhupguri when the victim, Debjani Roy (10), was going to school. The victim was accompanied by her mother when she suddenly tried to cross the road. A private car that was passing through the area at a high speed knocked her down. The driver of the vehicle applied sudden brakes but failed to stop the vehicle. The locals told the police that the car was at a very high speed. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThe victim received serious injuries on her head and other parts of her body. The residents rushed her to Dhupguri Gramin Hospital where Debjani was declared brought dead by the doctors. After the vehicle knocked down the victim, the car rammed into a road side lamp post. It was badly damaged and the driver fled the spot immediately after the accident. Senior police officers rushed to the spot and recovered the vehicle. According to the preliminary investigation, the cops also suspect that the car was at top speed when the accident occurred. Police are conducting raids to nab the driver. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata BoseIn another accident, an elderly woman sustained critical injuries when a tractor hit her on S B Garai Road of Asansol in West Burdwan on Tuesday morning. The victim was trapped beneath the vehicle triggering panic among the locals. They said the victim was sitting on a roadside wooden bench when the tractor ran her over resulting in severe injuries on various parts of her body. The police and locals rescued the injured woman and rushed her to Asansol District Hospital. The locals staged a protest demonstration in the area alleging that the driver of the tractor had no proper license. The agitation was later lifted following the intervention of senior police officers. The victim is undergoing treatment at the hospital, police said.
Kolkata: Local residents got frightened after multiple underground explosions took place on Gobinda Khatik Road on Wednesday.Huge cracks developed at multiple places near Tangra police station. It was found that the explosion took place due to the formation of methane gas from the garbage that got stuck in the sewerage line. According to local residents, around 2 pm, sudden explosions took place in six places which blew of lids of manholes between the stretch from Ambedkar Club to Pilkhana Mor. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: Mamatalocal residents got panic-stricken hearing the sound of explosions. Police went to the spot and found gases were emanating from open manholes. Soon fire brigade and Kolkata Municipal Corporation were informed. Also, the traffic movement on Gobinda Khatik Road was suspended. Local councilor and Member Mayor-in-Council Swapan Samaddar said there was a brick sewerage line under the road through which water along with garbage is pumped out from the Palmerbazar sewerage pumping station to Chowbaga pumping station. Methane gas was formed as garbage got stuck in the sewerage line leading to the explosion. “Our engineers are working. Hopefully by night the work will be done,” he said. Due to the explosion, huge cracks developed in the area. Fire fighters sprayed water on the open manholes to stop the emission of the gas. Till last news came in, none was hurt and repair work was under way.
Along day theatre festival, ‘Thespis 3’ – the third season of the National Micro Drama Festival will be organised by Vriksh the theatre, for the theatre lovers on April 21, at Kamani Auditorium.It is going to be the first time in the history of world theatre that forty plays will be performed on a single day with a maximum duration of ten minutes and awards are offered for 10 categories like Best Production, Script, Direction, Actor, Actress, Technician, will also be given. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe event will be inaugurated by ‘Kanpur- e- Kashmir’ directed by Vijay Kapoor, the winner of last year. Further the festival would be followed by plays in English, Hindi, Bengali, Malayalam, Urdu including ‘Hukum Malik’ by Rajiv Kohli; ‘Chand Ka Pinjra’ by Deepu Sood; ‘Natrang’ by Sumit Nair, ‘The Red String café’ by Pratibha and Ananya Sharma; ‘Shatabdir Byadhi’ by Prithwijit Chowdhury; ‘Aattam’ by M Shaji, to name a few. This year’s objective of the theatre group is to spread the idea of ‘Art for Humanity’, through different plays, different stories which will be shown. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThe festival has been organised from three years, in the name of Greek artist ‘Thespis’ – who is believed to be the person first to appear on stage. Not only the festival has entertained the audience, but also to its credit, this celebration of abundance has also bagged ‘Best of India Records’ for the last two consecutive years. Due to its unique nature, questions related to this festival have found a way into competitive examinations for bank recruitments and Civil Service prelims preliminary.
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Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Register Now » Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. 3 min read LAS VEGAS — The CES show is feeling more and more like a car show. The first press conference of the event was for Faraday Future, a company showing off a next-generation concept electric car, and Volkswagen took the stage Tuesday evening to officially kick off CES and show off an electric car of its own, a concept of its all-electric version of its iconic VW bus.Wednesday Chevrolet joined the conversation, unveiling its highly-anticipated 2017 Bolt EV. The car, which is expected to go into production toward the end of the year, will be capable of traveling up to 200 miles on a single charge and is priced at $37,500 ($30,000 after tax credits), making it within reach of average consumers. (Tesla’s vehicles start at $70,000.)“It was less than a year ago that we revealed the Bolt EV concept and promised to deliver a long-range electric vehicle attainable by the masses,” GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra said in a statement. “The Bolt EV is capable of using the latest mobile app technology to enable car sharing, advanced GPS routing and gamification, all designed to enhance the ownership experience now and into the future.”Related: What To Expect From CES 2016We had the opportunity to briefly drive a prototype of the vehicle at CES, and walked away very impressed. It is compact, making it a great fit for city drivers, but also has enough room inside (and trunk space) that you don’t feel like you’re tooling around in a clown car. Features include a 10.2-inch color touchscreen display; a rear camera mirror, which provides a wide-angle view of what’s happening behind the vehicle; and surround vision, a technology that allows drivers to see a bird’s eye view of the environment around the vehicle. That view can be super useful for those trying to squeeze into that tight parallel parking space and need to know how close they’re getting to the curb.Image credit: ChevroletEach one of those features has a little something that makes it standout from some of the other options out there. For instance, the touchscreen can be customized with widgets that you want access to – be it energy stats, Pandora radio or what have you. And the rear cam is actually displayed on the rearview mirror rather than the center console, making it easier to see while you have the car in reverse.Related: BlackBerry Is Getting Into Self-Driving CarsBluetooth low energy will allow the car to get to know individual drivers of the vehicle, and make adjustments to their specifications as they approach the vehicle. For instance, if you’re 6’ 2”, the car might recognize you’re approaching and automatically adjust the seat to fit your height after your shorter spouse finishes driving. The feature can also do things like set a specific temperature and adjust other features.That gamification details is an interesting one. Chevy will ultimately be offering Bolt EV owners the opportunity to compete with other owners, to compare driving styles and determine who among the group is driving the most efficiently.With a 200-mile range and innovative features, it’s definitely a game changer in the world of electric cars.Related: Faraday Future Shows Off Its Wild Electric Car Concept January 7, 2016 Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals
Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Register Now » Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. January 6, 2016 Change is everywhere this new year — and in every aspect of our lives. It’s human nature to evolve, in life as well as in business. And in every business, today, new technologies and new styles of management are appearing, along with new ways of doing things, aimed at improving efficiency and, in some cases, cost-effectiveness.Related: 8 Web Design Trends That Are Bound to Be Huge in 2016 (Infographic)Throughout my travels around the country for new business opportunities and keynote speeches, I’ve noticed a few trends happening — not just in boardrooms in corporate America, but with small- and medium-sized businesses, as well. How we work is changing, and as business leaders, we must adapt and change with the times. Here are few things that will change the way we work for years to come.1. Less PowerPoint, more videoHow long have we been using the same program for client presentations and meetings? It’s been a while, hasn’t it? Businesses are aware that consumers are demonstrating shorter attention spans and that if you don’t captivate them in less time, chances are you’ll lose their attention altogether. What to do? Video.Instead of presenting a bunch of boring, static presentations (usually 30 slides long), replace them with motion graphics. Something short, quick and to the point is more likely to leave a more lasting impression than 30 slides. Video is becoming the preferred presentation-medium, over images and infographics.Do you have a plan in place to replace your slides with video? If you don’t, look into all your options, and fast. You always want to be on the cutting edge of business and not get left behind. I’ve said this a thousand times before, but I think it’s worth repeating: “Adapt, change or die!”2. An emphasis on the ‘balance’ part in ‘work-life balance’We’ve all heard about the importance of work-life balance. While some people think corporations are “people,” I believe that people are people, and the heartbeat of your business. I’m a proponent of hard work and high rewards, but even the most workaholic individuals among us get tired and need a little breather. There’s no shame in that.With technology helping to eliminate barriers, more companies are delving into telecommuting and figuring out ways to make work easier and more meaningful. Basically, that means figuring out ways to work smarter. In fact, companies are using work-life balance as a recruiting tool to both attract ambitious people who want to move up the corporate ladder and to help drive change and inspire those who want to work and play hard.Related: What’s Next in Mobile Advertising? 6 Trends for the New Year.3. A de-emphasis on managersWell, don’t actually get rid of them, but do consider how the very nature of management has drastically changed in recent years. Leaders (or managers) used to be the people selected based on their experience and company loyalty. Today, however, those who lead organizations aren’t necessarily the ones who have spent the most time climbing the corporate ladder.With millennials set to dominate the workforce for the foreseeable future, leadership has had to evolve from managerial to inspirational and collaborative. The days of employee performance appraisals and performance management are going by the wayside — as is anything that creates tension among employees themselves or between employees and managers.The theme of today’s workforce is, instead, collaboration. As a result, management systems that provide feedback are being put in place in order to determine who will be the next class of leaders within the company. The corporate ladder is not as steep as it used to be. In its place is a more even-keeled playing field that will determine your company’s new environment and new set of leaders. Where does your company stand?4. The growth of social media for businessSure, we already use Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn on a fairly regular basis for our daily business dealings — heck, even presidential candidates are using tools like SnapChat and Periscope to get their messages to the masses. There isn’t anything new there, but social media will continue to evolve and change the way we do business.For example, social messaging by apps like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger has found ways to engage with customers for marketing purposes.With analytics and other insights becoming more prominent within large and small companies alike, people who eat, live and breathe technology will continue finding ways to combine social media with business. The other day, for instance, I made an online purchase, and the next thing I knew, I got a message on Facebook Messenger asking about my experience on that shopping site, and offering me a link to track my package.Facebook Messenger has been busy testing such customer service features. And they’re working: I have to say I was pleasantly surprised to see that message pop up.I’ve already written how video is the next wave of change in business, but it’s so important that I’ll mention it again. Last year alone, Facebook surpassed YouTube in video views, with 8 billion — “billion” with a “b” — views. Twitter also launched native video and SnapChat reported 6 billion daily video views.Yet, despite the success of video on social media, many companies are still reluctant to get into the social video game for one main reason: cost. It can be expensive to produce a broadcast-quality video, and I get it, because not everyone has the budget for long videos. But how about shorter formats?Vines on Twitter and 15-second Instagram videos are the rage these days, and there’s also streaming via Meerkat or Periscope. I myself have Periscope’d right before doing my All Business with Jeffrey Hayzlett podcast and have received tons of questions and instant feedback from followers. Periscope, in fact, is a pretty cool way to stay in touch with your customers/followers.Considering that this is already big, imagine how much more all-encompassing this could get in 2016. Jump on the wagon now or get left behind!What changes are you looking to implement in your workplace in 2016? Whatever it is you’re looking to change, you must ride the waves of change now sweeping the business world. Otherwise, you might end up wiping out! And “wipe out” sounds so much better when the Beach Boys sing it. Related: 5 Reasons Businesses Should Focus on Creating Video Content 6 min read
March 24, 2016 How Success Happens Hear from Polar Explorers, ultra marathoners, authors, artists and a range of other unique personalities to better understand the traits that make excellence possible. 2 min read The logistics around maintaining a car when you’re living in a major metropolitan area can be a serious pain.Worrying about your carbon footprint while stuck in city traffic and hunting for the Holy Grail of a consistent parking space may lead many a car owner to decide it is more trouble than it’s worth. Nissan revealed an adorable concept car on Tuesday at the 2016 New York International Auto Show to address those concerns.Related: Alphabet’s Sidewalk Labs Is Building a Platform to Make Traffic Less HorribleThe Nissan New Mobility Concepts, or NNMC, is a 100 percent electric car at a sprightly 7.6 feet in length — bigger than a small motorcycle but smaller than a full-sized car. It’s possible for three of these tiny vehicles to fit into one parking space.Image Credit: Nissan”With the fast-paced growth of smart technologies and the emergence of the sharing economy,” Nissan Future Lab Director Rachel Nguyen says in a release, “we are studying how this size and package of electric vehicle fits in real-life customer situations.”There are 10 NNMCs being tested in San Francisco, where drivers can rent one for $6 for a half hour on the road, or plunk down $80 for a whole day.Related: Uber and Lyft Will Collaborate With Public Transportation So You Don’t Have to Own a CarThe vehicles can fit up to two passengers and were designed for short distance trips. They’re not built for a road trip, but it may just fit the bill for a drive to the grocery store and back — though not quickly, as the car’s top speed is 25 mph.Image Credit: Nissan Listen Now