Container manufacturer Singamas yesterday issued a profit warning to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.The Chinese firm blamed declining global demand for ocean freight transport and consolidation among its principal customers.The company, the world’s second-largest box maker after CIMC, warned investors it would post a loss of US$25m for the first six months of this year. This compares with a a $10m profit at the same point last year, but that was followed by a $2.7m loss for full-year 2015.Singamas also said it continued to be affected by the fall-out from the Tianjin explosion, with compensation payments still outstanding.Meanwhile, the global drop in steel prices – mainly due to the chronic overcapacity of Chinese production and flat demand – has also affected Singamas revenues, as prices of new containers have plummeted“Sluggish global economic conditions continue to affect world trade and exports from the People’s Republic of China,” said the firm. “This in turn affected demand for, and the average selling price of, new dry freight containers.”According to Drewry’s annual Container Equipment Insight, published last month, in the first quarter of this year the cost of a new 20ft dry freight container fell to its lowest level since 2002 – averaging $1,350, down from around $1,850 a year ago.And Singamas is also likely to see fewer customers as consolidation takes place among carriers and box leasing companies, with the considerable capital expenditure involved in takeovers dampening the appetite to invest in new containers.The company warned investors: “Lower business volumes as well as low average selling prices significantly affected the group’s overall profitability in the first half of 2016.“The market uncertainty is expected to continue in the second half of 2016.” By Gavin van Marle 07/06/2016
Five Laois monuments to receive almost €200,000 in government funding WhatsApp Home News Calls for Mountmellick to get Autism Spectrum Disorder Units News Previous articleAppeal launched to locate caravan stolen from Electric PicnicNext articleExcitement building as National Ploughing Championships site almost ready Alan HartnettStradbally native Alan Hartnett is a graduate of Knockbeg College who has worked in the local and national media since 2008. Alan has a BA in Economics, Politics and Law and an MA in Journalism from DCU. His happiest moment was when Jody Dillon scored THAT goal in the Laois senior football final in 2016. Community Council Twitter Charlie Flanagan on Electric Picnic: ‘I’d ask organisers to consult with community leaders’ WhatsApp Facebook Twitter Pinterest RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Pinterest Calls for Mountmellick to get Autism Spectrum Disorder Units TAGSautism Facebook Community By Alan Hartnett – 5th September 2018 Sinn Fein TD Brian Stanley is calling for Autism Spectrum Disorder Units to be provided in Mountmellick Schools.Deputy Stanley said: “There is an urgent need to provide ASD units in the Mountmellick area.“I have a large number of parents contacting me in recent weeks expressing their frustration and concerns of the lack of such facilities in the town. Mountmellick is the second largest town in County Laois and needs ASD units.”Mr Stanley says that children in the town are being forced to travel all over the county to avail of services.He said: “These children either have no place in an ASD unit or they must travel to ASD units in Timahoe, Borris on Ossory, Rath or Portarlington.“This is putting a huge strain on the parents I have spoken to and this is also affecting the children due to complications with transport. In recent years there is a considerable increase in the number of children being diagnosed with Autism.“The importance of early intervention cannot be overstated and is widely recognised that this helps to prevent a whole range of problems in later life and assist them to live independently.“The shortage of ASD units comes on top of the other problems I have highlighted in recent weeks regarding services for children with Autism.“These include massive waiting lists for Psychological assessment, Speech and Language Therapy and Occupational Therapy no name a few.“When all of this is taken together it underlines the huge deficiency in facilities and services for children with special needs. The state is failing these families and this area now needs to be prioritised.“I have put questions to the Minister for Education regarding the need for ASD units in the town and I am awaiting his reply.“We are facing huge problems in society if we continue to fail these young people.”SEE ALSO – Appeal launched to locate caravan stolen from Electric Picnic New Arles road opens but disquiet over who was invited to official opening
Work Starts On Ultra-Modern TAFE Gippsland Campus VIC PremierBuilding is under way for the state-of-the-art new TAFE campus for residents and TAFE students in Wellington Shire.Minister for Training and Skills and Higher Education Gayle Tierney today announced the sod on the new $25 million Port of Sale campus of TAFE Gippsland.The campus will deliver education and training facilities for a range of industry and academic disciplines that will meet industry and community needs and improve access to training for students across the region.The development will provide purpose-built facilities for a variety of courses including health and social services, early childhood, carpentry, engineering and automotive trade.The new TAFE campus has been designed by Victorian architects GHD Woodhead Architecture, and being built by McCorkell Constructions.Construction is expected to be completed in 2021, with the campus expected to open in early 2022.The Andrews Labor Government is helping more Victorians find their path to a job, with $1 billion invested in the Victorian Budget 2020/21 to ensure Victoria has the training and skills system it needs as the state emerges from the global pandemic.Since 2015, the Labor Government has invested more than $1.7 billion to rebuild our TAFE system.As stated by Minister for Training and Skills and Higher Education Gayle Tierney“The Port of Sale development is another great example of the cutting-edge training facilities we’re building to meet the needs of local students and industry as they adapt in a changing economy.”As stated by Member for Eastern Victoria Jane Garrett“When completed, the new campus will provide more opportunities to learn new skills and gain qualifications that will lead to local jobs.” As stated by TAFE Gippsland Chief Executive Grant Radford“Our Port of Sale campus will meet local industry and community needs with its central location providing greater accessibility to training for students across the region.” /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:architecture, AusPol, Australia, building, childhood, community, Economy, education, Engineering, Government, industry, Minister, purpose-built, social services, students, TAFE, Victoria, Wellington
Created with Raphaël 2.1.2Created with Raphaël 2.1.2 Auto mechanics check out a car in this file photo. ‹ Previous Next › We encourage all readers to share their views on our articles using Facebook commenting Visit our FAQ page for more information. RELATED It’s something almost every car owner has experienced from time to time; they take their vehicle in for routine maintenance or repairs and their shop finds something that needs a part they don’t have, or the amount of work required can’t be completed in a single day. With collision repair shops it’s pretty much a given that your chariot will have to enjoy a sleepover or more away from home. So what’s to worry about? The shop will keep everything safe and secure, so you won’t have to worry about damage, vandalism or theft – or will you?The general rule that covers pretty much anything to do with your vehicle when it’s left at a repair centre (with their authorization) is referred to as “care and custody.” Simply put, your shop and its employees are expected to exercise the same care and protection of your property as they would their own, with some notable exceptions; while some people leave their house doors unlocked, and the keys in their vehicle in the driveway, they are expected to bring a more reasonable amount of care when dealing with your stuff. Many consumers are shocked to find out that they’re expected to deal with any vehicle mishaps while at the shop through their own auto insurance policy. Some may understand this if it was something beyond the shop’s control such as a fender bender on their parked vehicle caused by a careless visitor or delivery driver – but it can also include collision damages that happen when employees are road-testing your vehicle. See More Videos Buy It! Princess Diana’s humble little 1981 Ford Escort is up for auction An engagement gift from Prince Charles, the car is being sold by a Princess Di “superfan” Trending in Canada PlayThe Rolls-Royce Boat Tail may be the most expensive new car everPlay3 common new car problems (and how to prevent them) | Maintenance Advice | Driving.caPlayFinal 5 Minivan Contenders | Driving.caPlay2021 Volvo XC90 Recharge | Ministry of Interior Affairs | Driving.caPlayThe 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning is a new take on Canada’s fave truck | Driving.caPlayBuying a used Toyota Tundra? Check these 5 things first | Used Truck Advice | Driving.caPlayCanada’s most efficient trucks in 2021 | Driving.caPlay3 ways to make night driving safer and more comfortable | Advice | Driving.caPlayDriving into the Future: Sustainability and Innovation in tomorrow’s cars | Driving.ca virtual panelPlayThese spy shots get us an early glimpse of some future models | Driving.ca RELATED TAGSSafety and MaintenanceMaintenanceNew VehiclesBusinessInsurancePersonal Finance Repair shop charges you might not have heard ofCheck that fine print on almost any shop repair order you are required to sign when dropping off your car. It will always include a clause stating you are giving permission for the shop employees to operate your vehicle as required for part of any diagnosis or repair process. It also usually contains a warning that the shop is not responsible for any damage or loss, no matter how it happened or who caused it. Theft is included or at least implied in these waivers, unless it turns out a shop owner or employee was directly responsible for any missing property. Remember, when you lend your vehicle, you also lend your insurance policy.So, what can you do to protect your valuables when they are out of your control? First (and especially if you’re not experienced with the shop), ask questions: Where do they park vehicles that are left overnight? Is the area secure, monitored, fenced and locked? If the shop is located in a secluded commercial or industrial district, can they keep your vehicle inside at night? Most quality facilities are used to these questions and will go out of their way to accommodate reasonable requests.Secondly, don’t tempt fate. If you know your vehicle is going in for an overnight visit, remove any valuables. Leave the laptop or expensive sports gear at home. The Rolls-Royce Boat Tail may be the most expensive new car ever Trending Videos COMMENTSSHARE YOUR THOUGHTS advertisement Finally, no matter what you sign on a repair order, you can’t waive certain legal rights. If any damage or loss was the full or partial responsibility of your shop, they should step up and make amends for their share. Good shop management that’s interested in customer satisfaction will do this voluntarily, but some will take a little legal prodding.
He and his colleagues think that AI “partners” could help to fill the gap in middle and high schools across the country. Imagine an intelligent agent that could follow what groups of students are talking about then ask questions or provide feedback to enhance their learning. At the same time, the agent works with teachers, helping them orchestrate more effective classroom interactions, such as by providing summaries of the small group discussions. To make such a reality happen, this new institute will focus on three main challenges: In the first, researchers will work to develop new advances in the fundamental science of how machines process human language, gestures and emotions. Next, the team will strive to better understand how students, AI and teachers can collaborate effectively in both classrooms and remote learning contexts. Last, researchers will go to classrooms in Denver Public Schools and other school partners—virtually, during the age of COVID-19—to work hand-in-hand with students and teachers to think up new technologies. “Community members must be included from the very beginning when it comes to designing and developing technology that will be deployed in schools—this includes involving students, teachers, parents and other community leaders,” said Tamara Sumner, who is part of the new institute’s leadership team and the Director of ICS and professor of Computer Science.“This center aligns with our vision of producing research that quickly translates into meaningful societal impact,” said Keith Molenaar, interim dean of CEAS. “This work will touch the lives of people in Colorado and around the globe. It is truly inspiring to consider the impacts and opportunities that this project will generate.”Out in the communitySumner and D’Mello, also members of the CEAS Engineering Education and AI-Augmented Learning interdisciplinary research theme, note that the project is based on an approach called “responsible innovation.” Many parents may be justifiably concerned about bringing AI agents into the classroom. But, she said, by collaborating with real-life learners and teachers, the institute will strive to design technologies that schools actually need.The team will also work with its partner school districts to develop new curricula for middle and high school students preparing them to understand, critique and design new uses of AI. “Students need to understand how AI functions in the world now, including its potential role in building a ‘surveillance economy,’ and how it can help communities design together for a more just future,” said William Penuel, a member of the leadership team and professor in the School of Education at CU Boulder. “To do that, we are going to engage a diverse group of stakeholders from the community and from schools to help us set goals for co-designing curricula for middle and high school students.”The team hopes that this work will inspire a new generation of young people to get interested in AI and come up with new ways to use technology to help their own communities. And the project highlights the growing contribution of AI to the United States’ economy, dignitaries said at Tuesday’s press conference.“Just as prior NSF investments enabled the breakthroughs that have given rise to today’s AI revolution, the awards being announced today will drive discovery and innovation that will sustain American leadership and competitiveness in AI for decades to come,” said NSF Director Sethuraman Panchanathan.Partners include Colorado State University, the University of California, Santa Cruz, UC Berkeley, Brandeis University, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Georgia Institute of Technology, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and University of Wisconsin-Madison. CU Boulder researchers involved in the effort include D’Mello, Sumner, Penuel, Martha Palmer, Leanne Hirshfield, Peter Foltz, James Martin, Chenhao Tan, Katharina Kann, Ben Shapiro, Arturo Cortez, Kalonji Nzinga, Claire Monteleoni, Rafael Frongillo, Alessandro Roncone, Clayton Lewis, Lijun Chen, McKell Carston, Wayne Ward and Katherine Schultz.Categories:Science & TechnologyNews Headlines CU Boulder postdoctoral researcher Rosy Southwell and undergraduate student Cooper Steputis demonstrate the use of a functional near-infrared spectroscopy device, which can monitor brain activity. Such laboratory studies will complement efforts that a university research team is launching in Colorado classrooms. (Credit: Glenn Asakawa/CU Boulder)Take a seat in the classroom of tomorrow—where intelligent computers work side-by-side with groups of students to support their engagement in meaningful and productive learning experiences designed by their teachers.That’s the vision of a new $20 million research collaboration that will be led by the University of Colorado Boulder. The project is called the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) AI Institute for Student-AI Teaming. It will explore the role that artificial intelligence may play in the future of education and workforce development—especially in providing new learning opportunities for students from historically underrepresented populations in Colorado and beyond.The NSF announced the effort alongside four other AI institutes at a virtual press conference Tuesday.Sidney D’Mello, an associate professor in the Institute of Cognitive Science and the Department of Computer Science at CU Boulder, will lead the new institute.“We aim to advance a new science of teaming,” D’Mello said. “We have a lot of knowledge of what makes effective human-human teams. The next phase is understanding what underlies effective human-agent teams. In our case, that means students, AI and teachers working together.”The 5-year project will bring together a team of researchers from nine universities from across the country in a close collaboration with two public school districts, private companies and community leaders. It will also tap researchers from across the CU Boulder campus, including the Institute of Cognitive Science, the College of Engineering and Applied Science (CEAS), College of Arts and Sciences and the School of Education.“This center is a testament to the spirit of collaboration in our university’s DNA,” said Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation Terri Fiez. “We are pleased that this effort will position researchers from across our campus to lead in unlocking the potential of AI with our partners from other universities, companies and our communities.” Published: Aug. 26, 2020 • By Daniel Strain Top: Sidney D’Mello; bottom: Denver Public Schools students experiment with computer circuits as part of an opportunity organized by the SchoolWide Labs program at CU Boulder. (Credits: CU Boulder; SchoolWide Labs) The research team’s vision for how AI “partners” (such as an Alexa-like voice, left, a virtual agent, middle, and a robot, right) can collaborate with teachers and students in classrooms. (Credit: NSF AI Institute for Student-AI Teaming)AI partnersThe problem, D’Mello said, is familiar to anyone who has set foot inside a modern-day classroom.“Researchers and educators have talked about how important collaboration is to effective learning for a long time,” D’Mello said. “It’s just really hard to do that in a classroom because the teacher can’t be omnipresent.” Share Share via TwitterShare via FacebookShare via LinkedInShare via E-mail
…in making a project on such a contentious topic, we wanted this exhibit to inform and bear witness…to create a more empathetic dialogue and less of a hostile, polarized conversation.” Denise Fernandes, left, and Shelby McAuliffe, right | Photo by Kenna Bruner “Denise and I came to an agreeance that in making a project on such a contentious topic, we wanted this exhibit to inform and bear witness,” McAuliffe said. “We want people to come away with their own opinions and their own understanding of why it’s here, what it’s doing to the land and try to bring some sense of empathy or reconciliation with it. And ultimately for us is to create a more empathetic dialogue and less of a hostile, polarized conversation.”The two students are fellows of the CU Boulder Nature, Environment, Science and Technology (NEST) Studio for the Arts fellows. NEST provided the funding for their project, which is on view at the Arbor Institute until Nov. 4. NEST is a network of faculty, students, centers and campus units at CU Boulder that combine artistic practice and scientific research to explore disparate ways of observing, experimenting and understanding.The exhibit focuses on the landscape of oil and gas production wells along the Boulder and Weld county line. Their work shows the divisions between the people and communities in these counties and their differing opinions about fracking. Fracking, injecting water, sand and chemicals under high pressure into bedrock formations to extract oil or gas, is a contentious environmental and development issue.They photographed seven different well sites, showing different layouts, such as singular wells, well pads, in production or plugged. Weld County alone has 23,000 wells currently in production.Invisible Disruption makes visible the divergent urban and rural views of the land. McAuliffe and Fernandes conducted research and consulted with experts, inclucing a lawyer, scientists in air and water pollution, an anthropologist and an ecologist. They read papers and articles to understand previous and current research. After collecting information, they began to recognize invisibility aspects.“I’m from India and worked on energy and landscapes there, on policy and grassroots efforts to change it, so I wanted to understand the culture and the landscapes here,” Fernandes said. “To try to understand how this identity is embedded in the land from both sides was really important for Shelby and me.” The exhibit features light-boxes, large and small photographs of well sites and maps of the altered landscape in these two counties.“There is no energy source that is 100% clean and good,” McAuliffe. “For example, there are problems disposing of solar panels. So, even if we’re not doing fracking in Colorado, we’re doing pit mining in Africa to extract the metals so you can drive your Tesla? We’re not saying everything needs to go, because then what? Do we exploit a different energy source in another country? If it’s somewhere else, then does that mean it’s OK?”Fernandes and McAuliffe shared their collaborative process and investigation into the subtle and not so subtle ways fracking is part of Colorado’s cultural, social and environmental landscape at a workshop hosted by the Office for Outreach and Engagement and Boulder County Arts Alliance.Invisible Disruption: The Cultural Politics of Hydraulic Fracturing in Colorado can be viewed at the Arbor Institute in Boulder through Nov. 4. Categories:Pushing BoundariesCampus Community Wanting to better understand the contentious and complicated issues surrounding fracking in Colorado, social scientist Denise Fernandes and photographer Shelby McAuliffe collaborated on a project researching the cultural politics of oil and gas in Boulder and Weld counties.The result of their yearlong research is the visual exhibition Invisible Disruption: The Cultural Politics of Hydraulic Fracturing in Colorado.Fernandes is working on a PhD in environmental studies with interests in development, inequality and environmental justice. McAuliffe will graduate in May with a master’s degree in fine arts with a photography emphasis. Share Share via TwitterShare via FacebookShare via LinkedInShare via E-mail By Kenna Bruner • Published: Oct. 28, 2020
Govt. Committed to Inclusive Sports Policy SportNovember 26, 2012 RelatedGovt. Committed to Inclusive Sports Policy RelatedGovt. Committed to Inclusive Sports Policy FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail Minister with responsibility for Sports, Hon. Neita Headley, says the Government remains committed to developing an inclusive sports policy that will ensure Jamaicans have equal access to sporting activities, regardless of any impairment. “I believe that sports in Jamaica should be accessible for all and the policy of Jamaica for sports seeks to address accessibility and inclusiveness, which will allow all Jamaicans to participate in sports at all levels – sports for competition, sports for recreation and sports as a business,” she said. Mrs. Neita-Headley was addressing the opening ceremony for the Third National Deaf Sports Day, held at the Mona Bowl at the University of the West Indies campus in St. Andrew on November 23. The Minister said she was confident that the day’s activities would shore up the deaf community’s efforts as they prepare to participate in the 2013 Deaf Olympics, “which I know you will do very well in, because Jamaicans do well in everything that we do.” “In every aspect of sports that we have entered, Jamaicans have done very well. Our paralympians have just brought home gold in Mr. Alphanso Cunningham; we have the exciting Usain Bolt, the fastest man in the world; we have Shelly-Ann (Fraser-Pryce), the fastest woman in the world, and I believe our successes at the Deaf Olympics will be no different,” she said. The two-day event, hosted by Deaf Sports Jamaica, involves the participation of individuals from high schools and clubs catering to the deaf, in events such as football, netball, lime and spoon race, three-legged race, shot putt, 50 to 400-metre races, and relay races. Today’s event catered to high school students, while tomorrow’s event is geared towards the adults. President of Deaf Sports Jamaica, Kevin McDonald, who spoke to JIS News via translator, Antoinette Aiken, said the goal of the Sports Day is to improve the level of participation of deaf persons in athletics and other types of sports, not only at the national level, but internationally as well. “This is our third year and we really use it to bring all the deaf communities together from all over Jamaica to become involved (in sports). It doesn’t matter what level they are, if they are deaf or hard of hearing, we want them to become involved in this deaf sports even at an international level,” he said. He noted that he was among the two officials and four athletes who participated in the World Deaf Athletic Championship in Canada last July, which “was a great experience for us. We didn’t go there to win, but we wanted to show that Jamaican deaf people can become involved in things at that level.” “We want to make it an annual thing…that we go into different competitions all over the world. We are working towards becoming involved in the Deaf Olympics which is next year July 26 to August 4 in Bulgaria. We hope to send 20 persons to that Deaf Olympics,” he informed. Participating schools in the event include the Lister Mair/Gilby High School for the Deaf and the Danny Williams School for the Deaf in Kingston and St. Andrew; the May Pen Unit for the Deaf in Clarendon; St. Christopher’s School for the Deaf in St. Ann; the Jamaica Christian School for the Deaf in St. James; and the Kingston and St. Andrew, Manchester branches of the Caribbean Christian Centre for the Deaf. Deaf Sports Jamaica is a non-profit organisation set up by the deaf community in 2010. Advertisements RelatedGovt. Committed to Inclusive Sports Policy
Why culturalisation matters as much as localisationKate Edwards discusses how to approach culturalisation, and how to navigate sensitive themes so your game can reach wider marketsMarie DealessandriAcademy WriterWednesday 18th March 2020Share this article Recommend Tweet ShareFrom Skyrim to Super Smash Bros, culturalisation is an integral part of every single game we play, whether you realise it or not. That’s been Kate Edwards’ specialty ever since she created geocultural and geopolitical content strategy agency Geogriphy 15 years ago. During her Plan B Project talk earlier this week, Edwards addressed the key reasons why culturalisation matters and how it can help developers improve their world building. “A lot of times when we think about world building, we go to massive RPGs like Skyrim and GTA, but we can’t forget that even mobile games have very fully realised worlds,” Edwards said. “Even things like Angry Birds — [its world setting] might be simple by some people’s standards and yet it is still very valid.”There are things that may or may not be compatible with cultures around the world” “Any kind of game has a certain narrative structure, it has a world, an environment that has to be built, and there are certain things within those environments that may or may not be compatible with cultures around the world.”This is increasingly important as the games industry grows beyond its historical markets, with China surpassing the US as the largest gaming market in the word in 2019.”The global game industry is massive, and we’re still seeing tremendous growth across all the regions of the world, but the interesting thing is a lot of that growth is not happening where game developers typically think it’s happening. Game creators will make their game with the intention of selling in North America and Western Europe, but the reality is that that’s not where it stops. China has become this massive consumer powerhouse for entertainment media and a lot of game developers are trying to expand their scope.”Culturalisation is important for games like Assassin’s Creed that blend fictional narrative and real historyBut it’s not only about China — growth is happening in a lot of emerging markets too, especially in mobile. Edwards quoted a report from PricewaterhouseCoopers, pointing at 22% year-on-year growth for games in Nigeria for instance. Vietnam and India are also booming markets.Reaching these markets requires developers not only to invest in localisation, but most importantly in culturalisation.What’s the difference between localisation and culturalisation?The two types of culturalisationWhen to start culturalisation in the development cycle What to consider as you step into culturalisationWhat are the most sensitive themes to keep in mind?What’s the difference between localisation and culturalisation?While localisation will remain an essential aspect of making a game, culturalisation is the next step as game developers start to realise there’s more to other cultures than language.”Localisation primarily is focused on language translation,” Edwards said. “It’s language adaptability, it’s linguistic translation to make the game content linguistically compatible to the local market. [But game developers] also have to understand: will this game content be compatible with that local market? The theme of the game, the gaming experience, all that kind of stuff, is this the kind of game that people in that market want to consume? “We’re not just talking about language — we’re talking about a much broader level of adaptability” “That gets to a deeper cultural level, and that’s where culturalisation comes in, because we’re not just talking about language — we’re talking about a much broader level of adaptability.”The two types of culturalisationReactive culturalisationWhen Edwards works on a project, the type of culturalisation she’s asked to do can take two forms. The first is called “reactive culturalisation”.”Typically this is where I am asked to look for things that are going to be a problem,” she said. “[The developer] wants to make sure there’s nothing in there that’s going to cause a negative reaction from the audience playing this game.”Edwards took the example of the two-headed Brahman bull in Fallout 3 to illustrate what reactive culturalisation can look like.Fallout 3’s two-headed Brahman bull (top) and Kate Edwards’ photoshopped proposal of a two-headed horse”So in the original game, the Brahman bull has mutated and has two heads, and that was not going to work in India, because Brahman bulls are sacred to the Hindu faith. And so we went back to the developer and showed them my poorly photoshop two-headed horse (see right) and said: let’s use this instead because that would have been fine. “But unfortunately, because of the schedule and because they felt that frankly the Indian market was not important enough to make this change, they didn’t make the change. And so because of that one object in the game, Fallout 3 did not sell in India.”Proactive culturalisationThe second type of is proactive culturalisation, which is enhancing a product specifically for a market.”We actually look for ways to make [a product] more appealing to a specific country, culture, or region,” Edwards said. “An example of proactive culturalisation is when Marvel partnered with a studio in India to create an Indian version of Spider-Man. The initial reaction was very positive, but unfortunately this is an example where what people really wanted was Peter Parker from New York City. “When you’re dealing with a popular IP like Spider-Man, people don’t necessarily want you to culturalise it, to make it adaptable for them. Because they’re already familiar with who the original Spider-Man is. Pavitr Prabhakar, the protagonist of Spider-Man: India”So this is an example where it was really good intentions, but ultimately that’s not what people wanted in this particular market. Proactive culturalisation doesn’t always work the way you want it to, you have to really do your research and understand exactly what you’re doing.”When to start culturalisation in the development cycleMaking sure your game is going to be compatible with local worldviews needs to be done sooner rather than later.”Typically, most culturalisation occurs early on, it does not occur later like localisation,” Edwards said. “Localisation has to wait for the text to be done in order to start the translation, whereas with culturalisation my work often begins on a project very early.”For example, I’ve worked on all the Bioware projects from the last 18 years and for every one of those projects we were looking at things right from the start, reading the draft script, looking at the concept and trying to understand: What is this world? Who is in it? What do they do? Are there politics? Are there religions? Because if I can see early on what they’re trying to create, I can understand and course-correct right from the start, [see] whether or not things are going to be compatible with different cultures around the world. “That’s really the key. Course corrections early on [are] really cheap and easy to do compared to finding that later in the product cycle [when] it’s going to be very expensive to fix.”What to consider as you step into culturalisationThink about your values and goalsThere are multiple aspects to consider when thinking about culturalisation of a game, and one is to choose what you deem acceptable or not.”The point here is that you have to decide, when it comes to culturalisation issues, where you draw the line on what you will or will not change,” Edwards said. “So for example, if you’re releasing a game in China that uses a real map, if that map does not show Taiwan as part of China, your game will not be sold in China.””You have to decide where you draw the line on what you will or will not change” Keep informed about geopolitical changesThe world around us is constantly evolving culturally, ethically and geopolitically. Make sure you stay informed about those changes. “All it takes is one regime change in a certain market and the rules for content might change, and so you have to be aware of that,” Edwards said. She took the example of Germany changing its rules on Nazi symbology, and the impact it had on Wolfenstein. Another example she took was the Blitzchung controversy, where Blizzard removed professional player Chung ‘blitzchung’ Ng Wai from a Hearthstone competition after he showed support for anti-government protests in Hong Kong during an interview.Nazi symbols, depicted here Wolfenstein II, were banned in Germany until 2018″To me this was an example of a company that had no clue what it was stepping into,” she said. “I think Blizzard failed miserably in this example, and their explanations for what happened were really tepid and weak. This is just an example where things went awry for the company and the politics that were happening on the ground in the moment caught them off guard to a certain degree. “And of course Blizzard’s not alone — they’re just a more recent example. I’m just using them as an example because it does happen a lot to different companies”What are the most sensitive themes to keep in mind?Edwards identified five particularly sensitive themes for developers to keep in mind when it comes to culturalisation. HistoryAlways remember that history is a matter of perspective. Edwards gave an example dating back to the original Age of Empires, which she worked on before its release in 1997.”The original scenario that was in the game is [when] Japanese invaded the Korean peninsula [then known as the Joseon Empire]. Now, that’s what history tells us happened, but then we released the game in Korea and the Korean Ministry of Information said that never happened.”Real-time strategy games were very popular then and Microsoft was trying to expand its games around the world, so Ensemble Studios didn’t want Age of Empires to be banned in Korea.Microsoft had to change Age of Empires’ scenario for the Korean market in 1997″In order to do that we [had] to make some decisions,” Edwards continued. “The decision was ultimately made to make a patch for Korean players, in which the Joseon Empire invades Japan instead of the opposite. Now, as you might imagine at the time it created a lot of debate on the development team, about the nature of ethics and the nature of truth. And I think it was a very healthy debate to have because a lot of people were saying: this is wrong, we’re changing history for a specific government.”She then reminded the team that when she was working on the Encarta Encyclopedia with Microsoft, the French and Italian versions of the Encyclopedia had different heights for Mont Blanc, because at the time the governments did not agree on the exact height of the mountain. “A lot of cultures maintain their local expectations based on religious belief and we have to be very sensitive to that” “So that was a physical fact that was actually different, because in the local markets an encyclopedia has to conform to educational standards,” Edwards pointed out. “So if this market says this person is the inventor of the radio and this market says: no, this person is the inventor of the radio, we have to change that fact according to those different markets or else it’s not going to conform to educational standards — and, therefore, it will not get released in that market.”FaithFaith and religion are obviously sensitive topics and game developers need to respect local beliefs.”A lot of the cultures that we send our games into maintain their local expectations based on religious belief, and we have to be very sensitive to that as game creators if we want our games to be viable in those markets,” Edwards said. “In Hitman 2, they [recreated] a sacred place, the Golden Temple, which is the center of the Sikh faith in India. They made the main character go into the Golden Temple and actually start killing Sikhs at their most sacred place in the world. That’s highly inappropriate.” A scene from Hitman 2 was removed as it was reminiscent of the Golden Temple massacre of 1984Inclusion vs exclusionThe inclusion versus exclusion theme refers to people who might perceive an inequitable treatment in your game, because of their gender, nationality, or ethnicity. To explain this, Edwards took an example from Resident Evil 5.”They showed these pictures of this Caucasian male shooting sub-Saharan African villagers,” she said. “The excuse from the company was: what’s the big deal, they’re zombies. It is a big deal because what the developers do not understand is that showing that kind of imagery, is really politically and ethnically charged.”Intercultural dissonanceIntercultural dissonance is a larger issue that can relate to any kind of tension over a historic or political issue — it can be a tension between two cultures. For example, when Age of Empires 2 came out in 1999, the box art had a Japanese samurai on it, which Korean retailers did not approve of. “The reason had nothing to do with the game itself,” Edwards said. “It has everything to do with a geopolitical dispute between Japan and South Korea. So a lot of retailers said: I don’t want anything Japanese-related on my shelf.”Microsoft ended up making cover art specifically for Korea when an expansion was released. Age of Empires II: The Conquerors’ cover art in Korea (left) versus the rest of the world”But the whole point about this example is that a lot of times it’s not about the games we created,” Edwards said. “It’s about the political, social, cultural context into which the game is being released at that moment. It’s also about looking forward: when is this game releasing and what is actually happening in certain markets while this game is releasing?”She also touched upon gestures, which can mean wildly different things depending on the culture. She took the example of the sign of the horns, but this applies to more gestures that you may think.”If you’re going to have gestures, you have to be very careful about how they’re portrayed and think through the context” “I gave a lecture at Facebook headquarters a few years ago and I pointed out to them that the thumbs up gesture is actually the same as [giving the middle finger] in some countries. But yet that’s the corporate symbol of Facebook. We have to be very mindful. If you’re going to have gestures in a game you have to be very careful about how they’re portrayed and think through the context.”Geopolitical imaginationsThe last layer that could be sensitive is what Edwards calls geopolitical imaginations. “Now this is where governments use cartography and maps to reinforce what they believe they own, the territories they own out here in the real world,” she said. “They use maps as a form of propaganda, as a form of enforcing their political will on the content creator. So for example, Hearts of Iron games were banned in China because Taiwan and Tibet were not being shown as part of China.”These examples do raise ethical questions, and that’s why freedom of creativity is something Edwards likes to touch upon in her talks as well.Related JobsSenior Game Designer – UE4 – AAA United Kingdom Amiqus GamesProgrammer – REMOTE – work with industry veterans! North West Amiqus GamesJunior Video Editor – GLOBAL publisher United Kingdom Amiqus GamesDiscover more jobs in games “It almost always comes up when I give a lecture on culturalisation,” she said. “I think a lot of people when they hear a talk like this are like: ‘wow, this sounds like I need to change everything because I’m supposed to make everybody happy’. No, that’s not my point.”My point is that you need to exercise your creative vision the way you want to exercise it, but you can’t expect that creative vision to translate in a line with expectations and cultures all around the world. And so you have to be extremely conscious of the fact that all of the creative decisions you’re making during the world building process will have some dimension that either will be compatible or incompatible with those markets. “And it’s up to you, and you alone as the game creator, to decide what is ultimately more important to you.”Celebrating employer excellence in the video games industry8th July 2021Submit your company Sign up for The Daily Update and get the best of GamesIndustry.biz in your inbox. Enter your email addressMore storiesAdopt Me developers unveil new studio, Uplift GamesTeam behind hit Roblox game has grown to over 40 employeesBy Danielle Partis 9 hours agoDeveloper wins against Grand Theft Auto DMCA takedownTake-Two loses claim to reversed-engineered source made by fansBy Danielle Partis 12 hours agoLatest comments Sign in to contributeEmail addressPasswordSign in Need an account? Register now.
AFD and Eskom commit to a competitive electricity sector Previous articleS.Africa: students explore clean energy career prospectsNext articleSolar ‘shark tank’ competition opens for 2018 Babalwa BunganeBabalwa Bungane is the content producer for ESI Africa – Clarion Events Africa. Babalwa has been writing for the publication for over five years. She also contributes to sister publications; Smart Energy International and Power Engineering International. Babalwa is a social media enthusiast. Permanent secretary in the Ministry of Mines and Energy Simeon Negumbo and Erongo Red chairperson, Tobias Nambala, during the commissioning of the new substation at Walvis Bay Photo: Eveline de Klerk. Credit: New Era The Namibian regional electricity distributor, Erongo Red, has commissioned a state-of-the-art substation at Walvis Bay to keep up with the high electricity demand. Speaking at the inauguration on Friday, Erongo Red CEO Fessor Mbango said that the upgrade has by far been the company’s biggest project to date.According to the New Era, at present Walvis Bay’s electricity consumption is about 60MW and has put added strain on the network.However, the system upgrade will meet the town’s growing demand with the station’s 120MW transfer capacity at 11 kilovolt. Read more…“Our position has always been to reinvest in our network and to ensure that we provide exceptional services to our customers. Our vision is to bring electricity to all by 2020 and upgrading our network is very crucial in our drive to fulfil this vision.“Hence, this upgrade will enable us to address critical problems by improving reliability, enabling critical upgrades to be undertaken, reducing network constraints and minimising unplanned interruptions,” Mbango said.Electricity distributor invests in the networkThe N$570 million ($40 million) project was a joint venture between Erongo Red and Nampower.The electricity distributor contributed N$270 million ($19 million) through a loan obtained from the Development Bank of Namibia.Also speaking at the event, permanent secretary in the Ministry of Mines and Energy, Simeon Negumbo, said electricity is a vehicle for economic emancipation and commended Erongo Red and stakeholders for partnering to develop critical infrastructure for the benefit of Walvis Bay.The minister said: “As you are aware, Walvis Bay is of strategic importance to the whole country, thus it is very important that we have the infrastructure to cater for all the current and envisaged projects.“We cannot afford to experience unnecessary load shedding and outages in the future, just because we failed to invest in the infrastructure today.” Comments are closed. Finance and Policy BRICS Generation Low carbon, solar future could increase jobs in the future – SAPVIA RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Featured image: Stock UNDP China, CCIEE launch report to facilitate low-carbon development
We’ll send you our regular newsletter and include you in our monthly giveaways. PLUS, you’ll receive our exclusive Rider Fitness digital edition with 15 exercises for more effective riding. Horse Sport Enews Email* More from Horse Sport:Christilot Boylen Retires From Team SportAfter an exemplary career as one of Canada’s top Dressage riders, seven-time Olympian Christilot Boylen has announced her retirement from team competition.2020 Royal Agricultural Winter Fair CancelledFor only the second time in its history, The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair has been cancelled but plans are being made for some virtual competitions.Royal Agricultural Winter Fair Statement on 2020 EventAs the Province of Ontario starts to reopen, The Royal’s Board and staff will adhere to all recommendations put forward by government and health officials.Government Financial Assistance for Ontario FarmersOntario Equestrian has recently released this update of several financial assistance packages available, including those for farm business. SIGN UP Subscribe to the Horse Sport newsletter and get an exclusive bonus digital edition! Ottawa, Ontario—The Canadian Reining Committee (CRC) and the High Performance subcommittee is pleased to announce that the selection criteria for 2010 North American Junior and Young Rider Championships (NAJYRC) has been established for the discipline of reining.Riders who are interested in representing Canada at the 2010 Championships will have an opportunity to qualify by competing in specific Equine Canada classes between August 1, 2009, to June 7, 2010. Riders who would like to be considered for selection to the 2010 NAJYRC event must declare their interest to Equine Canada by May 15, 2010, in accordance with the selection criteria, which is posted on the Equine Canada website at www.equinecanada.ca/reining. Competition organizers that are interested in hosting a 2010 NAJYRC qualifying class must apply for Equine Canada sanctioning in advance of their event. Sanctioned qualifying classes must be held in accordance with the conditions identified in the selection criteria. Specific details on the sanctioning process are also posted on the CRC section Equine Canada website. “We were thrilled with the response last year despite the short notice, so hopefully with the extended qualifying period the program will continue to grow,” said Wendy Dyer, chef d’équipe of the 2009 NAJYRC Reining Team.For additional information on the CRC and its programs, including selection criteria, please visit the Equine Canada website at www.equinecanada.ca/reining or e-mail [email protected]