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Market remembers Manaka

first_img18 March 2004The life and talents of the late Matsemela Manaka, gifted playwright, artist and poet, will be celebrated with the staging of one his musical Goree at the Market Theatre in Newtown, Johannesburg later this month.Manaka, who was born in 1956 and killed in a car accident in 1998, was a pivotal player in the grassroots black theatre movement that grew out of Soweto from 1976. He founded the Soyikwa African Theatre group, which performed unscripted workshopped plays in a satirical response to the political repression of the time.His other plays include Egoli: City of Gold (1979), Blues Afrika Cafe (1980), Vuka (1981), Mbumba(1984), and the musical Goree.Although his productions were aimed at spreading the Black Consciousness philosophy to township audiences, they were also hugely successful at theatre festivals in Europe.Goree was first performed in 1989 by the Soyikwa group and was directed by John Kani. For some of the cast, the restaging of the play will be a nostalgic experience.Both Sibongile Khumalo and Manaka’s wife, Nomsa Kupi Manaka – who is producing the play – are cast in the same roles they played 15 years ago. Gugulethu Ngwenya will be on percussion, playing the same role that Manaka performed. Jerry Mofokeng directs the production.Goree is about the spiritual journey of a young South African dancer (played by Manaka) whose attempts to learn African dance lead to her own self-discovery. She travels the continent, ending up at Goree, Senegal’s notorious island of slavery, where she meets a wise old woman (Khumalo) who teaches her about dance, music and art.The woman, Oba, also imparts her wisdom about identity and xenophobia and about the need for Africans to take control of their lives.Goree, sponsored by Eskom and Netherlands’ funding agency Hivos, runs at the African Bank Market Theatre in Newtown from 19 March to 4 April.Tickets are available from R70 on weekdays and R90 on weekends, but previews at lower prices are on offer on 19-20 March.For block and corporate bookings, call Debbie on (011) 680-2926 or the African Bank Market Theatre on (011) 832-1641.Source: City of Johannesburg websitelast_img read more

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Icynene Has a New Foam With a Higher R-Value

first_imgIcynene is now offering a low-density polyurethane foam insulation with a slightly higher R-value, which the company says will help builders meet stricter energy code requirements.The product is called Icynene Classic Plus. The manufacturer says that the two-part spray foam insulation has an R-value of 4 per inch, compared to R-3.7 per inch for its Classic and Classic Max open-cell foam products.Sprayed into a 2×6 wall, the foam would provide a total of R-22 in stud cavities. (Whole-wall R-values would be lower because of thermal bridging at wall studs, headers, and other framing members.) The company’s other low-density polyurethane foams have R-values of 3.7 per inch, meaning that 2×6 wall cavities with these older formulations would have a total R-value of 20.35.The new product that attains R-22 has a high enough R-value to meet the International Code Council’s 2012 energy requirements (explained in a blog by GBA senior editor Martin Holladay). But Icynene said that most states are using the 2009 energy code, which requires R-21 in Climate Zones 7 and 8, and some jurisdictions that have adopted the 2012 requirements have modified it so that it, too, calls for R-21 in wall cavities.“We initially developed the Classic Plus to meet the 2009 code, but have seen other climate zones adopt the R-21 value as well, so we can satisfy all areas in the country that require R-21 (even R-22) in 2×6 wood stud walls,” a company spokesman said by e-mail.Like other open-cell polyurethane foams, Classic Plus is vapor-permeable. But it has slightly higher density than other Icynene open-cell products, 0.7 lb. per cubic foot (pcf) vs. 0.5 pcf. It’s also water-blown, so it has minimal global warming potential, Icynene says.last_img read more

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Online Universities: Why They Still Don’t Measure Up

first_imgThe Dos and Don’ts of Brand Awareness Videos Getting Beyond The Sketchy History Of Online UBut there are still big problems with the digital classroom, and graduates of online universities garner little respect.The industry’s sketchy past is one factor. Once upon a time, distance learning was the domain of Sally Struthers and the ICS correspondence school, where you could “learn gun repair by mail!”That’s changed, of course. Products like Saba LMS. Moodle, and even iTunes U have brought e-learning into the mainstream, and most major universities now allow at least some portion of coursework to be completed online. In a world where Skype conference calls are the new business normal, is there any logical reason why the best of the new online universities can’t rival their traditional counterparts?Yes, but not for the reasons you might expect.The most common, most quantifiable criticisms lobbed at online universities concern lackluster graduation rates, test scores and post-graduation employment statistics. But many employers are willing to hire from traditional schools whose stats are no better than the online outfits, so what’s the problem with the Internet schools?Why Online Grads Still Don’t Get RespectTo get some real-world perspective, I spoke with a San Francisco-based recruiter for a large government agency and an executive recruiter for Washington, DC-area nonprofits – both of whom asked for their names not to be used. Their opinions weren’t particularly promising for online schools and students. Tags:#E-Learning#education Guide to Performing Bulk Email Verification Assume you’re a front-pager, a specialist in need of a certification, or someone else who really needs a degree to make career progress. Have we reached the point where online universities like the University of Phoenix or Kaplan University are worth your investment and time?If you answered “yes,” there’s a lot of data to back you up. Online universities like the University of Phoenix, Kaplan University, AIU, and Ashford are fully accredited, and thanks to heavy marketing pushes, they’re becoming household names. And to shore up their offerings, most of the higher-ranked online schools offer hybrid classroom/online coursework. Just as important to gaining legitimacy, the online model is increasingly embraced – albeit in limited form – for classes at more prestigious traditional schools, from the California State University system to Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).  According to the government recruiter, “For a decent job with upward mobility here, a University of Phoenix degree wouldn’t get someone through the door unless they had something else really good on their resume. A recent USC grad with no experience could get an interview, but I’d be shocked to see a recent online grad get the same.”The nonprofit recruiter was a bit more forgiving, but she agreed. “In the not-for-profit world, employees’ most important assets are their relationships, so I wouldn’t discard a good candidate based on an online degree. Still,” she admitted, “it’s not ideal. It doesn’t set a baseline expectation, for me or for the people he or she will meet in the field. If I just need to check off a ‘degree’ box on a requirements form, online will do, but if two candidates are similar, I’m going with the one from Stanford or UVA.”Brand And Social InteractionWhen pressed for the reasons behind their opinions, both recruiters felt the differences between online and traditional schools boiled down to two things: brand and social interaction. Most traditional schools – from the local community college to the University of Chicago – have clearly understood reputations, strengths and weaknesses. An engineering degree from Carnegie Mellon or a veterinary science degree from UC Davis carry the weight of an established program with a history of results. Without historical data and a history of success or failure, the online schools’ GPAs, class standing and other performance metrics seem like arbitrary numbers.Ultimately, education is a promise, rather than a product.Academia is not like the business world, in which an online startup can trounce an established business by building in the cloud and delivering commodity goods with less overhead. Reputation and consistency matter when building trust in hard-to-quantify-results. Ironically, innovation, lower costs, inclusion and reduced barriers to entry can actually hurt the prestige of online schools. One of the key functions of a selective college is to do some pre-sorting of applicants: “if you got into Yale you must be smart.” Giant online schools that accept pretty much everyone may be democratizing education, but they’re not helping employers or anyone else separate out the best and the brightest. Accreditation is a step, and elearning is a tool, but they aren’t sufficient on their own. Over time, the best online schools have to build portfolios of successful clients and amass enough alumni performance data to distinguish themselves from diploma mills.In short, online colleges have to build their reputations just like offline schools do. It’s taken centuries for the top schools to cement their positions, it’ll take decades at least for online schools to do the same. Until that happens, recruiters would rather play it safe and go with the well-known brands.Are The Social Issues Solvable?Recruiters also worry that online schools can’t reproduce the critical social environment of traditional colleges. According to the government recruiter, hiring decisions are about more than weighted scores, and college provides a lot of soft-skills training that is just as important as test-driven learning.“There’s more to getting an education than completing a class. Social interactions, extracurricular activities, just being able to get yourself out of bed and into class every day – these are all learning experiences with a direct effect on someone’s ability to become a productive employee and work on a team.” Online education doesn’t really address any of these factors – at least not right now.When I mentioned that even Harvard was already offering blended learning degrees, the recruiter was quick to point out that those degrees were limited to Harvard’s Extension School, and the University’s most prestigious schools go out of their way to underscore the power of communal, face-to-face learning.“I hate to sound like a snob, but call me back when Harvard Business School offers an online MBA.”Lead image courtesy of Shutterstock.center_img A Comprehensive Guide to a Content Audit Facebook is Becoming Less Personal and More Pro… cormac foster Related Posts last_img read more

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NAB 2016: More of the Latest Camera Rigs, Dollies, Gimbals, and Drones

first_imgPolly SliderMunich-based manufacturer Polly System debuted their new Polly Slider. This is one of the lightest sliders on the market, weighing only 3.3 lbs. The Polly Slider uses patented high-inertia flywheel stabilization, giving the camera operator incredibly smooth control and stable panning.The Pollysystem Polly Slider is available for order and retails for $1,072.Rig Wheels Cloud MountRig Wheels has something great for those of you constantly mounting to vehicles. The new Cloud Mount was designed for gimbal stabilizers — allowing you to quickly mount them to vehicles without having to use suction cups. The Cloud Mounts uses rubberized magnets that quickly attach to any vehicle. There are even mounts that go on either side of glass, allowing you to attach to windshields and car windows.The system was built on top of the company’s RigMount XL platform. It adds a vibration isolator designed to let your gimbal work more effectively. The system doesn’t require any additional grip or rigging hardware. The Cloud Mount starts at $499 for the vibration isolation only. The kits that include magnets are based on weight. DSLR rigs start at $999 and complete kits cost up to $1799.Here is a look at the Rig Wheels Cloud Mount from No Film School. Rollocam HerculesRollocam showed off the Kickstarter success Hercules pocket dolly — and by pocket dolly, I mean this thing literally fits inside a pocket. The compact camera dolly was designed for cell phones, DSLR, and mirrorless cameras weighing up to 10 lbs. The Rollocam Hercules can literally roll in either direction and it’s programmable at five different speeds. To follow a different path, just attach an additional bracket and set magnets in the path.The Hercules base model is available for preorder for $125 and the premium package will cost $249.Here is a look at the Rollocam Hercules from No Film School. Shape ISEE+Shape previously debuted the ISEE gimbal for GoPro and action cameras. Now they are back with the ISEE+, a 2-axis stabilizer designed for DSLR and mirrorless cameras. The ISEE+ has a payload of 3 lbs, so it’s not optimal for large cameras, but it can capture some great action shots with a camera like the Blackmagic Pocket. The ISEE+ costs $1,100.On the production end, Shape showed off a prototype for larger cameras — expected to ship in July for around $4,500. Here’s a look at all of the new Shape rigs from No Film School. Freefly Alta 8Earlier this year Freefly announced the Alta 8, the company’s new octocopter — it has two more blades than the original Alta, now called the Alta 6. The company’s new flagship drone can carry payloads up to 20 lbs and can be assembled and ready to fly in five minutes. The Alta 8 features quick-release plates on top and bottom, allowing you to mount a MoVI on either side.The Alta 8 is available now for $17,495. This interview from AbelCine provides a great look at everything Freefly is up to.center_img Fotodiox CamDollyThe CamDolly from Fotodiox was first shown off as a prototype at last year’s NAB, but this year Fotodiox showed off the fully functional system. The CamDolly allows for five different configurations, each taking less than 15 minutes to set up. It supports more than 500 pounds, enough for any camera setup and ride-on operator. The system lets you use any tripod and tripod head by using universal leg cups.Ride-On Track Dolly – Position the tripod and seat in any of several configurations. The included push/pull T-bar gives your dolly grip control over the speed of your dolly move. The track wheels can ride on metal track or SnakeTrack Flexible Rail.Ride-On Doorway Dolly – Easily mount a set of four skate wheels or a set of four pneumatic tires. A pair of special Compensation Legs make it easy for the dolly grip to use the push/pull T-bar to steer the dolly.Heavy Duty Slider – CamDolly is designed to ride along any 30-35mm pipe that can be purchased at a home improvement store. The CamDolly Cinema System includes a pair of adjustable rail ends. Operate the Slider at ground level, or raise the slider up on C-stands or light stands, and use the included pair of supports to eliminate sagging.Tabletop Dolly – Using only the Core of the CamDolly, use this compact mode to do dolly shots on a tabletop or low angle shots.360° Orbit Dolly – Lock the wheels to specific degree to get a smooth, graceful, repeatable arc.The CamDolly is available now for $3,995.Libec RH25D and RH45D Tripod HeadsLibec displayed their new dual-head models – the RH25D and RH45D. Each head features a 75mm and flat-base adapter. What sets these heads apart from prior models is the continuous counter balance, offering smooth and stable operation. The RH25D is estimated to cost $500 and the RH45D $750. Here is a look at the Libec tripod heads from No Film School.What were your favorite pieces of gear that you saw come out of NAB 2016? Share your gear hopes and dreams below! Flesh out your video gear wish list with this roundup of all the incredible support equipment on display at NAB 2016.Top image via Motorized PrecisionIt’s only been a day since our since our last NAB 2016 camera rig roundup, but we already have another batch of dollies, sliders, and drones to look at. Here are even more tools to drool over.Motorized Precision KIRAMotorized Precision announced the KIRA, the latest in robotic camera rigs. The rig has a maximum height of 9 feet and can extend to 5.63 feet. Don’t expect to just casually carry this around — the KIRA alone weighs 570 lbs and the baseplate weighs a whopping 3400 lbs. The KIRA has a maximum camera payload of 40 lbs and can move 3.2 feet in 0.5 seconds.Check out the KIRA in this video from AbelCine.last_img read more

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