Sweet! You’re on the blog right now!You’ve really done it now. You’ve fallen down the geocaching rabbit hole. Suddenly, you’re speaking another language involving FTF, muggles and TOTT’s. But lo’ and behold, there’s so much more to explore in this wonderland of geocaching. Your one-stop shop is right here. Discover an inspiring Geocache of the Week—oddly enough, posted every week. Stand in awe of selfless contributions to the adventure from the Geocacher of the Month—weirdly named every month (and open for votes right now). There’s more though, as anyone down here in the geocaching rabbit hole will explain. You’ll also travel around the world, checking out Mega-Events in Belgium or the logging the First to Find (FTF) ever recorded in SPACE!So, what are you waiting for? Explore the blog! Share with your Friends:More SharePrint RelatedGeocaching and Talking AnimalsApril 15, 2010In “Movie References”5 Film Genres GIFF Audiences LoveJune 5, 2018In “News”37 Ways to Spice Up Your GeocachingJuly 22, 2014In “Community”
Make it so Maker Faire captures the DIY spirit in art, science, music and robotics Maker Faire 2018 draws crowds in NYC Maker Faire CEO: Rockets and robots instead of pigs and pies 27 Photos Post a comment Maker Faire captures the DIY spirit in art, science, music and robotics A display at the 2018 Maker Faire in the San Francisco Bay Area exhorts makers of all stripes to get their DIY in gear. James Martin/CNET The company behind the Maker Faire and Make magazine has ceased operations and laid off its staff of 22, according to Maker Media founder Dale Dougherty.”I hope to get control of the assets in a new organization, which might be a nonprofit,” Dougherty said in an email Saturday. Dougherty told the site that some of Maker Media’s biggest successes have been in education so shifting to a nonprofit model might make sense. He also said he wants to keep Make’s online archive alive and continue letting third parties license the Maker Faire name for affiliated events.”We’re not necessarily going to do everything we did in the past, but I’m committed to keeping the print magazine going and the Maker Faire licensing program,” Dougherty told TechCrunch.The fair kicked off in 2006 in San Mateo, California, and eventually cropped up in nearly 50 countries worldwide. It billed itself as a “family-friendly showcase of invention and creativity that gathers together tech enthusiasts, crafters, educators, tinkerers, food artisans, hobbyists, engineers, science clubs, artists, students and commercial exhibitors.” The magazine, which began a year earlier, catered to a similar do-it-yourself-minded crowd, with tutorials and other features.In 2017, the various fairs attracted more than 1.5 million people, according to the Make website. Culture TechCrunch reported the news earlier, and Dougherty told the publication that though the fair and Maker Media’s DIY content remain popular, the financial end of things hasn’t panned out. “It works for people but it doesn’t necessarily work as a business,” he told TechCrunch. 0 Tags Share your voice
Infosys, India’s second largest IT firm, has rolled out a new appraisal system named iCount for its employees. The system measures their performance based on the targets given to them.The move comes months after it had abandoned the bell curve appraisal tool to assess its employees’ performance.Under the new assessment system iCount, employees will get feedback on their performance throughout the year.”Infosys has changed the way performance management is done, with higher focus on individual performance rather than relative performance. We have moved away from forced ranking curve and given our managers more flexibility and empowerment, while still retaining focus on maintaining a high performance culture,” an Infosys spokeswoman told The Economic Times.In September last year, Bengaluru-based IT major had ceased using the bell curve method. Under that system, the managers were compelled to separate the employees into three categories and “rank the performance of 70 percent as average, 20 percent as high and 10 percent as low.”Infosys’ move to discontinue the bell curve tool was one of CEO Vishal Sikka’s initiatives to reduce attrition levels and improve employee productivity. After taking charge as the chief of Infosys in August 2014, Sikka brought many changes for ‘Infoscions,’ including doing away with the formal dress code.The new system will reward the company’s employees based on their performance in short-term, taking into account annual targets set for them.”The underlying message is that every Infoscion counts and contributes…It allows for continuous feedback from peer, manager, stakeholder. This is much better than the earlier point in time feedback,” the company spokeswoman told the daily.Other IT majors such as Accenture and IBM have also made changes to their employee performance appraisal systems. Recently, IBM started using a new system called Checkpoint that helps in reviewing employee performance continuously rather than assessing once a year.
State Bank of India (SBI) Chairman Rajnish Kumar attends a news conference in Mumbai, India, November 23, 2017.ReutersThe country’s biggest lender, State Bank of India (SBI) is planning to eliminate ubiquitous debit cards from the banking system. State-owned SBI, which is servicing around one-fifth of the population, has ambitious plans in the coming years to promote digital payment and takedown plastic cards, despite the huge dependency on debit cards. Speaking at the annual Fibac, SBI chairman Rajnish Kumar said, “It is our wish to eliminate the debit cards, and am sure we can eliminate them.” He further added that there are around 90 crore debit cards in India and over 3 crore are people using credit cards. Kumar highlighted digital solutions like SBI’s own ‘YONO’ platform as a way for achieving a debit card-less country.YONO (You Only Need One) is an integrated digital banking platform offered by SBI. YONO is an app for both Android and iOS and enables users to access a variety of financial and other services such as taxi bookings, online shopping or medical bill payments. The platform was launched in November 2017 by the then Finance minister, Arun Jaitley. A State Bank of India branch in Mumbai.REUTERS/Shailesh AndradeKumar said YONO allows a user to withdraw cash at the ATMs and can be used at a merchant establishment to make payments without having a card. He further said the bank has already rolled 68,000 ‘YONO cashpoints’ and is under the process of adding further 1 million cashpoints in next one and a half years.Once the system is in place, the necessity to have a card will be eliminated automatically. Moreover, YONO can also be used to take credit, making it a digital credit card that can be carried anywhere. He also underlined QR code payments as another alternative for debit cards. However, YONO is prone to issues like website failure. Last month, YONO went down across all platforms, causing major inconvenience to its users.
Citation: Shiver me timbers. Architects plan wood skyscraper for resident life (2013, June 21) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-06-timbers-architects-wood-skyscraper-resident.html Inspiration from Mother Nature leads to improved wood More information: www.cfmoller.com/r/Wooden-Skyscraper-i13265.html Explore further (Phys.org) —HSB Stockholm, a building society in Sweden, will be 100 years old in 2023 and to mark the date it is staging its architectural competition 2023. One entrant already gaining lots of attention is Berg | C.F. Møller, which has a proposed design of a 34-story solar powered skyscraper made of wood—well, not entirely of wood, but enough of wood to raise interest. Berg | C.F. Møller Architects are working in partnership with architects Dinell Johansson and consultants Tyréns on a skyscraper that would be seen for miles. The other two competing teams are Equator Stockholm with Mojang (Minecraft) and Utopia Architects with Rosenberg Architects. In general, the word “wood” makes some people nervous because of fears of fire. Architects who favor wood, however, argue that wood is safer than other types of building materials and can be more fire resistant than both steel and concrete. Earlier this year, an article in the Toronto Sun took note of what Geoff Triggs, building code consultants expert, had to say about the use of wood in high-rise construction. Rather than using small two-by-fours super-compressed mass timber is used to make very large panels. The compressed lumber is as strong as concrete but lighter. The compression process creates dense wood blocks that are difficult to burn. The wooden skyscraper is gaining attention as “green” news because of the wood factor proposed. A number of points in wood’s favor: C. F. Møller’s team noted how timber production releases less carbon dioxide than steel or concrete production, at a time where construction accounts for 30 to 40 percent of the world’s carbon dioxide generated from humans. Concrete and steel command a large part of the market, but wood-supporters note that wood is a lightweight, renewable material that can bear heavy loads in relation to its weight. Cost-wise, they say wood is cheaper to build and better for the environment than using steel-and-concrete for buildings. Wood costs less to transport due to its lightness, too. The C.F. Møller team is thinking in terms of a residential complex. While the building is made mostly of wood, it would have a concrete core. Wooden pillars, beams, walls, and ceilings in the plan are encased within a glass façade, with the walls, ceilings and window frames visible from the exterior through the large windows. Each apartment will have this glass-covered veranda, while the building itself will be powered by solar panels on the roof. © 2013 Phys.org 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.
Spatial patterns can explain the counterintuitive results of the new study, such as that deceitful behavior may fare better if it is costly and that a higher success rate of identifying defectors does not necessarily favor cooperative behavior. These consecutive snapshots show the cyclic dominance that emerges during a simulation, including (top left) dominance by pure defectors (red), to (top right, bottom left)) dominance by conditional cooperators (blue), to (bottom right) dominance by deceitful defectors (green). Credit: Szolnoki and Perc © 2014 Phys.org For researchers who study the evolution of cooperation, deceitful behavior seems to throw a wrench in mechanisms that promote cooperative behavior. Questions arise such as, under what conditions does deception evolve? How effective are strategies to identify deceitful behavior? And how can deceitful behavior coexist with cooperative behavior?In a recent paper published in The New Journal of Physics, Attila Szolnoki at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in Budapest, and Matjaž Perc at the University of Maribor in Slovenia and King Abdulaziz University in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, have addressed these questions using a variant of perhaps the most popular tool for studying cooperation—the prisoner’s dilemma game. The general idea behind the prisoner’s dilemma game is that players can choose to cooperate or defect. Although the choice to defect will always provide a higher individual payoff, mutual cooperation provides a higher collective payoff. To avoid being exploited, cooperators may deny cooperation toward defectors, if they are able to identify them. To avoid being identified, some defectors may therefore attempt to hide their real intentions from cooperators. Naturally, this trick is costly, and for its execution the deceitful defectors need to bear an additional cost. The main question is, under such conditions, which strategy is evolutionarily the most successful?After running simulations, some of the researchers’ results were intuitive. As expected, high costs of deceitful behavior work against deceitful defectors, while low detection probabilities help pure defectors who do not bother with hiding their intentions. However, looking at the results in greater detail yields some unexpected findings. “We show that the introduction of deceitful strategies, in our case defectors who try to hide their true intentions, may affect the competition between cooperator and defector in very unexpected ways,” Szolnoki told Phys.org. “Naively, one would expect that, the better the radar of cooperators at identifying deceitful defectors, the better the conditions for cooperation to evolve. But it is not necessarily so. If the cost of hiding is moderate, then the extra cost of detection opens the door for even more defection.” More information: Attila Szolnoki and Matjaž Perc. “Costly hide and seek pays: unexpected consequences of deceit in a social dilemma.” New Journal of Physics 16 (2014) 113003. DOI: 10.1088/1367-2630/16/11/113003 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. Journal information: New Journal of Physics As the researchers explained, although high costs of deceitful behavior eventually hurt deceitful defectors, in the short-term high costs actually benefit them because the pure defectors are harmed even more, and are the first of the three strategy groups to die out. Deceitful defectors may coexist and die only when the costs of deceit become very high, then leaving only the conditional cooperators. This finding leads to the counterintuitive conclusion that, up to a certain point, deceitful behavior fares better if it is costly.A second unexpected result involves the probability parameter. By definition, a higher detection probability means more pure defectors are caught, which sounds like it should hurt pure defectors and promote cooperative behavior. But the results showed that, although high detection probabilities do hurt pure defectors, competition between pure defectors and deceitful defectors means that deceitful defectors actually benefit. Oddly, lower detection probabilities that indicate an imperfect ability of cooperators to properly detect defectors may be a viable option for cooperators.The researchers explain that the counterintuitive results arise from self-organized spatial pattern formation. The interactions among the three competing strategies lead to the spontaneous emergence of cyclic dominance, with certain strategies dominating under different conditions and at different times in the simulation, separated by phase transitions.”Interestingly, we have detected extensive parameter regions where all three strategies can coexist because they effectively play the rock-paper-scissors game,” Perc explained. “This finding highlights the importance of cyclic dominance, which is probably much more widespread in real life than we usually assume.”Also very interesting is how the coexistence driven by cyclic dominance can terminate. Either, one strategy gradually goes extinct, or there are diverging fluctuations in the amplitude of oscillations. We had to invest exceptionally high computational efforts to explore the details of the latter phase transition.”As the researchers explain, the study of complex social systems can uncover new behavior not seen in traditional complex systems.”In general, the study of phase transitions has a long tradition in statistical physics, which was initially primarily concerned with solid-state materials,” Szolnoki said. “Our work is a beautiful example of the fact how the study of other complex systems, in particular those with a social or biological background, reveals fascinating new behavior that has never been observed before in the realm of traditional models of statistical physics. There is thus a mutually rewarding symbiosis between statistical physics and socio-biological complex systems.”By revealing this hidden complexity behind the evolution of deception, the results provide insight into social dilemmas and highlight the likelihood of unexpected consequences when more sophisticated strategies compete. “The key point is the possibility of cyclic dominance,” Perc said. “If the latter emerges, the behavior of the system can be completely counterintuitive. For example, directly supporting strategy A may actually promote strategy B who is the predator of A. Hence, a well-intended ‘intervention,’ for example by changing the payoffs of the game, can easily yield an undesired outcome. Our study highlights that such considerations are particularly important if the competing strategies are smarter than just plain cooperation or defection.”The researchers hope that the study will inspire future research on the role of deceitful strategies in evolutionary games as well as in human cooperation. Scientists develop new theoretical model on the evolution of cooperation (Phys.org) —Tricking someone into trusting you in order to gain something from them is common behavior in both the animal and human worlds. From cuckoo birds that trick other bird species into raising their young, to cunning salespeople who pretend to sell you a product that will improve your life, deviant behavior takes many forms. But no matter the situation, the result is that a single individual gains something while the community at large loses. Citation: Deceptive behavior may (deceivingly) promote cooperation (2014, November 7) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2014-11-deceptive-behavior-deceivingly-cooperation.html Explore further