Are Man United making a mistake? Angel Di Maria’s top ten goals – VIDEO

first_imgAngel Di Maria looks certain to leave Manchester United this summer just a year after joining the club for a record fee of around £60million.The Argentine winger is unsettled in Manchester and is pushing for a move to Paris Saint-Germain.United fans certainly didn’t see the best of Di Maria last season, but should Louis van Gaal fight to keep him?Check out ten of his best goals and let us know what you think…last_img

Unforgettable SA hiking trails

first_imgThe endangered Cape mountain zebra isfound in the area of the Tierkloof trail.(Image: Cites) The rare Mimetes chrysanthus, or GoldenPagoda, a member of the protea family,on the slopes of the Gamkaberg reserve.(Image: Plants of Africa) A seldom-seen resident of the area – theAfrican black oystercatcher.(Image: African national parks) A lone hiker on the vast sand dunesof the Oystercatcher trail.(Image: Oystercatcher trail website)Janine ErasmusThe Oystercatcher trail near Mossel Bay on South Africa’s southern coast, and the Tierkloof trail in the Gamkaberg reserve are among the world’s thirty most spectacular walking trails. This is according to a new BBC publication titled Unforgettable Walks to Take Before You Die.The fifth book in the BBC’s Unforgettable series focuses on a breathtaking selection of global rambles ranging from leisurely to arduous in a wide variety of settings and on all the major continents. There are two other walks located on the African continent. These are the hiking trail through the sandstone-dotted territory of the Dogon tribe in Mali, West Africa, and the ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania.Each walk takes no longer than two weeks to complete, although some are more taxing then others. A stroll through the intricate network of canals in Amsterdam or around the temples of Kyoto, Japan, contrasts sharply with a climb to the summit of Kilimanjaro or a trek through China’s 22-km long Tiger Leaping Gorge, which is believed to be the deepest gorge in the world.The selection of adventures caters to many interests, from ancient legends and history to religion and nature. Other walks featured in the book are the Yellowstone National Park in the US and Peru’s 45-km Inca Trail which winds through the mountains to the sacred Inca city of Machu Picchu. The Freedom Trail in Boston, a red path leading to sixteen significant historic sites, and a walk along the 32 km of paths on Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater estate in Pennsylvania are of interest to history buffs.The Tour du Mont Blanc is an 11-day trek through the French, Italian and Swiss Alps on a circular route around Mont Blanc. The amazing monasteries of Meteora in central Greece, most of which are perched upon towering sandstone cliffs, are a sight to behold. There are many other fascinating walking trails mentioned in the book, which is illustrated with glorious images throughout its 256 pages.Homegrown adventureThe Oystercatcher trail wends its way along the southern-most coastline west of Mossel Bay to the mouth of the Gourits river. Not only has the trail featured in Getaway magazine’s top 10 South African hikes but as part of the Ker & Downey Splendours of the Cape safari it has snatched a place on National Geographic’s 2007 list of the world’s best tours.The trail can be negotiated over three or five days. Luggage is carried by porters. Along the way hikers are sure to spot Southern Right whales, dolphins and sea birds. The trail is named after the African black oystercatcher, an endangered bird. It is said that hikers are more likely to catch a glimpse of a whale than of one of these solitary birds, which find their food among rocks and on the beach. Estimates put the number of African black oystercatchers left in the world at no more than 5 000.The Tierkloof trail lies in the Gamkas, an isolated mountain range in the south-eastern part of the Little Karoo in the Western Cape province. It lies between the Swartberg and Outeniqua mountains near the town of Outdshoorn. The name originates in the word gami, meaning lion, which is taken from the language of the Khoekhoen people, the aboriginal herders of the Cape.The Gamkaberg (Afrikaans, meaning Gamka mountains) reserve, a natural habitat of the endangered Cape mountain zebra, was established in 1974 to help conserve the rare animal. A relatively flat mountain plateau covered with mountain fynbos towers over dry bush below. Deep gorges cut through these extremes of terrain. Lying between South Africa’s winter and summer rainfall regions, the reserve experiences gentle soaking rain in winter and thundershowers in summer.Gamkaberg is renowned for its diversity of plant and animal life. Here observers can see Cape mountain zebra, leopard, and honey badger, as well as eland, red hartebeest, grysbok, duiker, baboon, caracal and many others. The recently discovered and rare Mimetes chrysanthus, a member of the protea family, is found here.The six-hour Tierkloof trail, which is actually the first stage of the two-day Oukraal trail, is picturesque and moderately strenuous. Hikers trek up the deep forested Tierkloof ravine up to the fynbos-covered plateau, gaining almost 700 m in altitude. Here they can put their feet up at the Oukraal camp and admire the views of the Swartberg and Outeniqua mountains on either side.Essential travel destinationsThe BBC’s Unforgettable series tracks down essential sights and experiences around the world. Seasoned travellers, photographers and writers Steve Watkins and Clare Jones tour the world in a quest to find the most inspiring and exciting travel destinations. The other books in the series are Unforgettable Journeys To Take Before You Die; Unforgettable Islands to Escape to Before You Die; Unforgettable Things To Do Before You Die; and Unforgettable Places To See Before You Die.For their latest book Watkins and Jones travelled for nine months to 24 countries and took over 60 000 images for the 30 walks featured in the book.Useful linksThe Oystercatcher trailGamkaberg nature reserveHiking trails in South AfricaNature reserves in the CapeBBC shopNational Geographic best toursGetaway magazineKer & DowneyPlants of AfricaCites (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species)last_img read more

Mobile phones bring the internet’s power to Africa’s poor

first_imgPoor people across Africa are increasingly aware of the power of the internet to improve their lives, such as find a job, and use sophisticated online tools to do just that. In under-resourced environments, mobile phones are the most efficient way for them to access these benefits. A girl takes a photo with her mobile phone during the opening ceremony for a new library in El Fasher, the capital city of North Darfur, Sudan. (Photo: Albert González Farran, UNAMID) • Mobile money is transforming Africa’s economy • Africa urged to invest in artists as visionaries • Africa and space: the continent looks skyward • Kumoodi: from Lagos to the world • Africa’s youth population can lift the continentIndra de Lanerolle, University of the WitwatersrandThere is abundant evidence that poorer people in Africa are now using the internet. In South Africa, most new users come from low income households, many of them living below the poverty line.The main driver of this trend is declining costs. Most people in Africa connect to the internet via mobile devices and the price of these is falling. Nokia, for example, launched a $29 internet phone this year.Pay-as-you-go data can be purchased in small bundles in many African countries, sometimes in increments as low as $0.10. This is true even though data prices in South Africa remain high.Solid data on how far internet use has spread is limited. The most reliable survey conducted in 11 countries in 2011 and 2012 found that about one in three South Africans, one in four Kenyans and fewer than one in 20 Ethiopians used the internet.But it appears clear that where networks are available and prices are affordable, people will use internet services.Low income users appear increasingly aware of the benefits of internet access. A study just published of South African users on low and very low incomes (most of them in households with incomes between about $45 and $450 dollars per month) found that many were aware of and used sophisticated online tools.They recognise the power of the internet for improving their lives, in looking for a job for example. Young women using their mobile phones in rural Makurdi, Benue state, Nigeria. (Photo: Kristian Buus, Stars Foundation)Different uses depending on where you areThe internet implies a single thing, a single network. But we may be coming to a point where this is no longer a useful way to describe the realities of the complex web of physical, economic, social and content networks that span the planet.For those who are well-connected, some in Africa, but most in rich countries, the internet means a wide range of services – from quickly messaging friends to storing files and photos in the cloud to accessing global databases. All are available quickly and cheaply 24/7 at home, at workplaces and educational institutions and in public spaces on a variety of devices including those with keyboards.For many of Africa’s new users, the internet means access to instant messaging (a cheaper substitute to expensive SMS text messaging) and some social media via a mobile phone. It is highly rationed and slow.Our research shows that rich media online – music and video – is consumed very lightly because of cost and slow connections. A Kenyan soldier, part of the African Union Mission to Somalia, takes a photo of himself with his mobile phone at Kismayo seaport in southern Somalia. (Photo: Tobin Jones, AU-UN IST)Broadband challenges remainThis research, and the work of others, point to the fact that for the poor, in Africa and elsewhere, the internet is a mobile-centric world.So people on low incomes are getting benefit from internet access. But the experience is a long way from the visions of broadband for all which more than 20 African countries have committed to.As one young internet user told me in a village in Kenya, you can’t write a job application on your mobile phone. And dependency on mobile networks also means that where competition is limited, data costs are too high for many people to consume data on anything but a very rationed diet.There are also concerns about the openness and security of the internet in Africa. There are significant threats of censorship. Some initiatives to make the internet more widely available are being challenged, undermining its openness. Sahal Gure Mohamed, 62, texts on his mobile while waiting to register at the Ifo refugee camp in Dadaab, Kenya, in August 2011, after fleeing from Beledhawo in Somalia. Just over 10% percent of new arrivals and some 20% of long-term residents at the camp reportedly accessed information through mobile phones. (Photo: Internews Europe)African internet progress set for reviewThe next meeting of the World Internet Project, a network of researchers from over 30 countries, is to be held in Africa for the first time. The July gathering in Johannesburg will be an opportunity to compare progress and challenges on the continent with other parts of the world.It will also provide the opportunity to engage with policy makers, researchers and the private sector on how to build on what has been achieved to enable an affordable, accessible and open internet that is truly global.Indra de Lanerolle is Visiting Researcher, Network Society Project at University of the Witwatersrand.This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.last_img read more

Yield monitor considerations

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By John Fulton (FABE Associate Professor), Elizabeth Hawkins (OSUE Field Specialist, Agronomic Systems) and Richard Colley III (Digital Ag Program Manager)Harvest has started here in Ohio but it is good to remember to make sure your yield monitor is setup and calibrated properly. Geo-referenced yield data (i.e. yield maps) are being used more frequently to provide precision agriculture insights and recommendations at the field level. Yield maps not only help growers understand end-of-year performance within fields, but also can be used to characterize in-field variation. Information about this variation is often used by service providers to deliver prescriptions, recommendations, or other information back to the farmer. Because yield maps continue to be an important data layer to learn from and help drive changes or decisions at a field level, proper management of the yield monitor is critical to generate accurate and reliable yield data. Grain moisture and test weight, along with grain flow through the combine, will vary within passes and across fields. Therefore, the flow and moisture sensors on combines must be calibrated to these expected conditions in order to log accurate data.Here are a few reasons for calibrating your yield monitor:Collect accurate yield estimates so yield variability across the field is accurately represented by the yield mapGenerate accurate prescriptions (Rx’s) and profit maps that require the use of yield maps. The generation of variable-rate fertility and seeding maps are often heavily based on yield maps. A few services are additionally providing profit maps to evaluate areas of profit and loss.Use yield maps as a data layer to assess management risks and the allocation of inputs. Precision agriculture practices have shown to provide feedback to improve profitability and helping confirm the best practices and input selections for a farm operation.The following outlines yield monitor best practices for one to use pre-harvest and during harvest:Be sure to update firmware and/or software for the yield monitoring systems. If necessary, contact your equipment or technology service provider about available firmware updates and where they can be downloaded.Most yield monitors use a mass flow sensor at the top of the clean grain elevator. Due to the grain impact, the plate will wear to the point of developing a hole if it isn’t replaced soon enough. The wear that occurs changes the reading from the mass flow sensor. Be sure to replace the plate if wear is evident. Don’t neglect to recalibrate after replacing yield monitor components. This recalibration is necessary to ensure accuracy of the yield monitor. A more simple explanation is that a worn impact plate can result in an incorrect yield reading on your display. It is important to not overlook the yield mapping system as a worn component will throw off yield readings.Update and/or configure DGPS. Software related to auto-steer, yield monitors and other GPS-based systems require separate attention. Licenses must be renewed. Calibrations and parameters must be updated or confirmed—especially if the display in the combine cab was used for planting or spraying earlier in the year. It’s necessary to meticulously switch every setting and value, from machine dimensions to type of crop and operation, so they are relevant to harvest operations.Check auto-steer operations and that previously used AB/guidance lines are available within the display. Remember, you may have to adjust sensitivity settings.It is also important to calibrate yield monitors for every crop, each season to ensure that all data being collected is as accurate as possible. The yield monitor needs to “be taught” how to convert the readings from the mass flow sensor into yield; therefore, it is necessary to show the yield monitor the range of yield conditions it will encounter throughout the season. It is wise to periodically check the calibration throughout the season to be sure the data being collected is still accurate. Grain moisture and density can vary between crop fields and, at times, vary significantly within a field. Accounting for changes in grain moisture and density improves the accuracy of yield estimates.Remember to recalibrate if harvest conditions change. Changes could include: yield monitor components are replaced or adjusted, grain moistures increase or decrease by over 6% to 8%, or after a rain shower but still dry enough to harvest. The use of grain carts to calibrate yield monitors can be acceptable as long as it weighs accurately compared to certified scales. One should make sure the weigh wagon is on level ground (<2% slope) and stationary for a few seconds before documenting the weight. Bring along your field notes so you can review them during harvest as crop conditions vary or issues are observed. While harvest is a busy time, taking notes and images during harvest (especially if conducting on-farm research) can be valuable data when finally sitting down for post-harvest analysis and summary. We all forget, so notes and images can help document important information!For more information on calibrating yield monitors, check out the Ohio State Precision Ag website at www.ohiostateprecisionag.com and the Extension Publication Tips for Calibrating Grain Yield Monitors—Maximizing Value of Your Yield Data: https://ohioline.osu.edu/factsheet/anr-8.last_img read more

Cong tells Sheila, Kalmadi to stop blame game

first_imgThe Congress party on Monday virtually asked Sheila Dikshit and Suresh Kalmadi, locked in an ugly public spat over allegations of corruption in the Commonwealth Games (CWG) projects, to shut up.The gag order came on a day the Group of Ministers (GoM) on CWG extended the tenure of the Games Organising Committee (OC), a step that will help facilitate investigations by various agencies into the corruption charges.”We would like everyone concerned to observe restraint,” Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari said.The inquiry ordered by the Prime Minister gives wide powers to the investigator who could recommend further inquiry by the CBI, the CVC or departmental action, the party said.Earlier in the day, the Centre ordered its officials on deputation to the Kalmadi-led OC to stay put as a probe into charges of corruption that tarred the spectacle gained momentum. The GoM on the Games headed by urban development minister Jaipal Reddy – meeting here for the first time after the Games and probably the last time after its formation – extended the tenure of the OC “until further orders”, thereby extending the stay of government officers on deputation to the committee.The GoM met in the backdrop of the spat between the Delhi CM and Kalmadi over allegations of corruption in Games projects.The meeting was attended by Delhi’s Lieutenant-Governor Tejendra Khanna, sports minister M.S. Gill, cabinet secretary K.M. Chandrasekhar and other senior officers, besides Dikshit and Kalmadi. Tourism minister Kumari Selja, who is out of town, could not attend the meeting.advertisementBriefing reporters after the meeting that lasted close to 50 minutes, Reddy said the GoM met in a cordial atmosphere to pass a resolution hailing the successful conduct of the Games and thanking all stakeholders. Emerging from the meeting, Dikshit and Gill declined comment.Reddy said the decision to extend the tenure of government officers serving in the OC was taken so that work left in the committee could be wound up. On the face of it, the development may appear routine. But the decision will help facilitate the probe by various agencies. Fears have been expressed in several quarters that vested interests within the OC may try to tamper with key documents.It has been left to the sports ministry to decide till which time the services of these officers will be spared. It means Gill has emerged as the PM’s trusted man and will help facilitate the probe. Jaipal Reddy, though, refused to answer any query on bungling in the Games projects, saying this was not the mandate of the GoM. Reddy also refused to answer any queries relating to bungling in the Central Public Works Department that built major stadiums. The agency is under the urban development ministry.Meanwhile, BJP president Nitin Gadkari tried to pull the PMO into the Games mess, saying it approved several files relating to the Games projects. The Congress was quick to retaliate, saying Gadkari lacked gravitas and it was below the party’s dignity to respond to him.last_img read more