Financial Planner

Side Hammer Preacher Curl A Perfect Resistance Training Exercise To Develop Your Biceps

By Guy Long

Working your muscles against a force of resistance, simply known as resistance training, helps develop the strength and size of your skeletal muscles. It uses the force of dumbbells, barbells, weighted bars and weight stacks to oppose the force generated by large muscle groups through eccentric or concentric contraction.

Resistance training helps add muscle mass to your body, improves the strength of your muscles, increases the size of your large muscle groups and improves your performance. These exercises demand you to supply your body with protein, amino acids, carbohydrates and vitamins on a regular basis. Protein and amino acids make the structural core of the human body and they are required for growth and repair of tissues. Moreover, amino acids help in the transportation of oxygen and nutrients. Carbohydrates help replace the glycogen after hard resistance training exercises, which gives muscle tissue energy and lean mass.

Protein-rich foods include lean meats such as chicken, fish and turkey, nuts, whole grains, yogurt, fortified cereals and pulses. You should get the recommended daily allowance of carbohydrate from the brown rice, potatoes, sugar beets, sweet potatoes and fortified cereals. For vitamins and minerals, consume fresh fruits and green vegetables on a regular basis. Drink plenty of water daily to detoxify your body.

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Many regular gym users love to train their biceps as large and muscular biceps are seen as a symbol of strength and power by others. There are numerous resistance training exercises that target specifically the biceps. Among those exercises, Side Hammer Preacher Curl is a magnificent resistance training workout that defines your biceps. This exercise also targets the side of your bicep.

This exercise is known as Preacher Curl because you perform it on a preacher. In order to start this exercise, you need to grab a dumbbell in your hand and place that very arm on the preacher in a diagonal direction. Next step is to bring the dumbbell down and then raise it up to complete one rep. Make sure that you perform 3 sets of about 10 reps each. Now, switch to your other arm and repeat the same process.

When you bring the weight up, make sure that you squeeze the inside of your bicep to put maximum stress on the muscle. It is also important that you flex your bicep when you bring the weight down. Control the movement of the dumbbell and maintain a steady posture. Make sure that you don’t jerk the weight as doing this can lead to a severe bicep injury.

If you are not sure about how to perform the Side Hammer Preacher Curl, then you should look for the services of a professional gym trainer in your vicinity. This would help you reap the maximum benefits from the resistance training exercises as a fitness trainer will carefully monitor your technique and will guide you on how to execute exercises safely. Moreover, he or she will suggest you a right combination of resistance training exercises keeping in view your weight-training objectives and body needs.

About the Author: Guy Long is a

Personal Fitness Trainer in Elsternwick

and runs

Health Clubs in St.Kilda

where he specializes in resistance training, body transformation, weight control, and overall muscular strength for local residents.

Source:

isnare.com

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Surgeons reattach boy’s three severed limbs

Tuesday, March 29, 2005A team of Australian surgeons yesterday reattached both hands and one foot to 10-year-old Perth boy, Terry Vo, after a brick wall which collapsed during a game of basketball fell on him, severing the limbs. The wall gave way while Terry performed a slam-dunk, during a game at a friend’s birthday party.

The boy was today awake and smiling, still in some pain but in good spirits and expected to make a full recovery, according to plastic surgeon, Mr Robert Love.

“What we have is parts that are very much alive so the reattached limbs are certainly pink, well perfused and are indeed moving,” Mr Love told reporters today.

“The fact that he is moving his fingers, and of course when he wakes up he will move both fingers and toes, is not a surprise,” Mr Love had said yesterday.

“The question is more the sensory return that he will get in the hand itself and the fine movements he will have in the fingers and the toes, and that will come with time, hopefully. We will assess that over the next 18 months to two years.

“I’m sure that he’ll enjoy a game of basketball in the future.”

The weight and force of the collapse, and the sharp brick edges, resulted in the three limbs being cut through about 7cm above the wrists and ankle.

Terry’s father Tan said of his only child, the injuries were terrible, “I was scared to look at him, a horrible thing.”

The hands and foot were placed in an ice-filled Esky and rushed to hospital with the boy, where three teams of medical experts were assembled, and he was given a blood transfusion after experiencing massive blood loss. Eight hours of complex micro-surgery on Saturday night were followed by a further two hours of skin grafts yesterday.

“What he will lose because it was such a large zone of traumatised skin and muscle and so on, he will lose some of the skin so he’ll certainly require lots of further surgery regardless of whether the skin survives,” said Mr Love said today.

The boy was kept unconscious under anaesthetic between the two procedures. In an interview yesterday, Mr Love explained why:

“He could have actually been woken up the next day. Because we were intending to take him back to theatre for a second look, to look at the traumatised skin flaps, to close more of his wounds and to do split skin grafting, it was felt the best thing to do would be to keep him stable and to keep him anaesthetised.”

Professor Wayne Morrison, director of the respected Bernard O’Brien Institute of Microsurgery and head of plastic and hand surgery at Melbourne’s St Vincent’s Hospital, said he believed the operation to be a world first.

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Website Design And Development

Promote Your Business Through Video Creation And Distribution Service

By Mike Gates

Video websites are the main attraction of traffic from all the various segments. Advertising through these websites for the promotion of your website is vital and it is an easy way to reach out to the public. If you do not know how to create and distribute the videos, you can get professionals to help you do that.

This media is the best way to fully communicate with the public in a way that most of the users find it motivating. The possibilities of catching a broad targeted traffic and the capability of your site to gain it will be analyzed and presented to you by the professionals on video creation.

The reason of advertising your website through this media is to increase the number of traffic to your site as these are the most viewed media by millions of users leading you to gain potential visitors. And the professional video creators are experts on alluring the accurate class of visitors besides boosting up the number of visitors through their high feature videos about your site.

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Alexa is one of the websites that gives ranking to the websites based on the traffic they have. Alexa discloses that YouTube gets its 15% of viewers directly from search engines. It is because watching an online video to get the desired knowledge about any site is far better than going through the prolonged text content. So, if your video ad can top the search engine list, the traffic is definitely yours.

So as to place your website video in a creatively impressive way to reach out to your targeted traffic you can get remarkable help from the professional experts. This will give you the opportunity to share your business with both the audio and visual effects. The experts will design it in such a way that the users can immediately understand the message and are impressed that much to visit your website to find out the details after the watch.

You cannot believe it but the benefit of this media is enormous. YouTube stands third among other such websites for its popularity and varied traffic it used to get globally. To broadcast your own video ad your experts can use many of YouTube’s features assuring the possibility of finding your video by various analogous tags.

Videos created by the experts are perfectly professional ads and the experts can also help in the distribution process as well. The title, description and keywords are all search engine optimized if asked for helping you to gain a good ranking. If you have taken help from the experts they will help you to get the best effective video ad at the minimum cost.

A lasting impact is delivered by the online video ads by giving a precise and appealing show to the viewers. Your success in the internet world has been stamped with a difference if you have a web commercial. Find the best expert to create your own video ad and sit on to reap the crop.

About the Author: Mike Gates is a customer of HostGator. He has created web site to give tutorials on HostGator and to promote HostGator. You can get detailed information about

hostgator promo code 2011

there.

Source:

isnare.com

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British computer scientist’s new “nullity” idea provokes reaction from mathematicians

Monday, December 11, 2006

On December 7, BBC News reported a story about Dr James Anderson, a teacher in the Computer Science department at the University of Reading in the United Kingdom. In the report it was stated that Anderson had “solved a very important problem” that was 1200 years old, the problem of division by zero. According to the BBC, Anderson had created a new number, that he had named “nullity”, that lay outside of the real number line. Anderson terms this number a “transreal number”, and denotes it with the Greek letter ? {\displaystyle \Phi } . He had taught this number to pupils at Highdown School, in Emmer Green, Reading.

The BBC report provoked many reactions from mathematicians and others.

In reaction to the story, Mark C. Chu-Carroll, a computer scientist and researcher, posted a web log entry describing Anderson as an “idiot math teacher”, and describing the BBC’s story as “absolutely infuriating” and a story that “does an excellent job of demonstrating what total innumerate idiots reporters are”. Chu-Carroll stated that there was, in fact, no actual problem to be solved in the first place. “There is no number that meaningfully expresses the concept of what it means to divide by zero.”, he wrote, stating that all that Anderson had done was “assign a name to the concept of ‘not a number'”, something which was “not new” in that the IEEE floating-point standard, which describes how computers represent floating-point numbers, had included a concept of “not a number”, termed “NaN“, since 1985. Chu-Carroll further continued:

“Basically, he’s defined a non-solution to a non-problem. And by teaching it to his students, he’s doing them a great disservice. They’re going to leave his class believing that he’s a great genius who’s solved a supposed fundamental problem of math, and believing in this silly nullity thing as a valid mathematical concept.
“It’s not like there isn’t already enough stuff in basic math for kids to learn; there’s no excuse for taking advantage of a passive audience to shove this nonsense down their throats as an exercise in self-aggrandizement.
“To make matters worse, this idiot is a computer science professor! No one who’s studied CS should be able to get away with believing that re-inventing the concept of NaN is something noteworthy or profound; and no one who’s studied CS should think that defining meaningless values can somehow magically make invalid computations produce meaningful results. I’m ashamed for my field.”

There have been a wide range of other reactions from other people to the BBC news story. Comments range from the humorous and the ironic, such as the B1FF-style observation that “DIVIDION[sic] BY ZERO IS IMPOSSIBLE BECAUSE MY CALCULATOR SAYS SO AND IT IS THE TRUTH” and the Chuck Norris Fact that “Only Chuck Norris can divide by zero.” (to which another reader replied “Chuck Norris just looks at zero, and it divides itself.”); through vigourous defences of Dr Anderson, with several people quoting the lyrics to Ira Gershwin‘s song “They All Laughed (At Christopher Columbus)”; to detailed mathematical discussions of Anderson’s proposed axioms of transfinite numbers.

Several readers have commented that they consider this to have damaged the reputation of the Computer Science department, and even the reputation of the University of Reading as a whole. “By publishing his childish nonsense the BBC actively harms the reputation of Reading University.” wrote one reader. “Looking forward to seeing Reading University maths application plummit.” wrote another. “Ignore all research papers from the University of Reading.” wrote a third. “I’m not sure why you refer to Reading as a ‘university’. This is a place the BBC reports as closing down its physics department because it’s too hard. Lecturers at Reading should stick to folk dancing and knitting, leaving academic subjects to grown ups.” wrote a fourth. Steve Kramarsky lamented that Dr Anderson is not from the “University of ‘Rithmetic“.

Several readers criticised the journalists at the BBC who ran the story for not apparently contacting any mathematicians about Dr Anderson’s idea. “Journalists are meant to check facts, not just accept whatever they are told by a self-interested third party and publish it without question.” wrote one reader on the BBC’s web site. However, on Slashdot another reader countered “The report is from Berkshire local news. Berkshire! Do you really expect a local news team to have a maths specialist? Finding a newsworthy story in Berkshire probably isn’t that easy, so local journalists have to cover any piece of fluff that comes up. Your attitude to the journalist should be sympathy, not scorn.”

Ben Goldacre, author of the Bad Science column in The Guardian, wrote on his web log that “what is odd is a reporter, editor, producer, newsroom, team, cameraman, soundman, TV channel, web editor, web copy writer, and so on, all thinking it’s a good idea to cover a brilliant new scientific breakthrough whilst clearly knowing nothing about the context. Maths isn’t that hard, you could even make a call to a mathematician about it.”, continuing that “it’s all very well for the BBC to think they’re being balanced and clever getting Dr Anderson back in to answer queries about his theory on Tuesday, but that rather skips the issue, and shines the spotlight quite unfairly on him (he looks like a very alright bloke to me).”.

From reading comments on his own web log as well as elsewhere, Goldacre concluded that he thought that “a lot of people might feel it’s reporter Ben Moore, and the rest of his doubtless extensive team, the people who drove the story, who we’d want to see answering the questions from the mathematicians.”.

Andrej Bauer, a professional mathematician from Slovenia writing on the Bad Science web log, stated that “whoever reported on this failed to call a university professor to check whether it was really new. Any university professor would have told this reporter that there are many ways of dealing with division by zero, and that Mr. Anderson’s was just one of known ones.”

Ollie Williams, one of the BBC Radio Berkshire reporters who wrote the BBC story, initially stated that “It seems odd to me that his theory would get as far as television if it’s so easily blown out of the water by visitors to our site, so there must be something more to it.” and directly responded to criticisms of BBC journalism on several points on his web log.

He pointed out that people should remember that his target audience was local people in Berkshire with no mathematical knowledge, and that he was “not writing for a global audience of mathematicians”. “Some people have had a go at Dr Anderson for using simplified terminology too,” he continued, “but he knows we’re playing to a mainstream audience, and at the time we filmed him, he was showing his theory to a class of schoolchildren. Those circumstances were never going to breed an in-depth half-hour scientific discussion, and none of our regular readers would want that.”.

On the matter of fact checking, he replied that “if you only want us to report scientific news once it’s appeared, peer-reviewed, in a recognised journal, it’s going to be very dry, and it probably won’t be news.”, adding that “It’s not for the BBC to become a journal of mathematics — that’s the job of journals of mathematics. It’s for the BBC to provide lively science reporting that engages and involves people. And if you look at the original page, you’ll find a list as long as your arm of engaged and involved people.”.

Williams pointed out that “We did not present Dr Anderson’s theory as gospel, although with hindsight it could have been made clearer that this is very much a theory and by no means universally accepted. But we certainly weren’t shouting a mathematical revolution from the rooftops. Dr Anderson has, in one or two places, been chastised for coming to the media with his theory instead of his peers — a sure sign of a quack, boffin and/or crank according to one blogger. Actually, one of our reporters happened to meet him during a demonstration against the closure of the university’s physics department a couple of weeks ago, got chatting, and discovered Dr Anderson reckoned he was onto something. He certainly didn’t break the door down looking for media coverage.”.

Some commentators, at the BBC web page and at Slashdot, have attempted serious mathematical descriptions of what Anderson has done, and subjected it to analysis. One description was that Anderson has taken the field of real numbers and given it complete closure so that all six of the common arithmetic operators were surjective functions, resulting in “an object which is barely a commutative ring (with operators with tons of funky corner cases)” and no actual gain “in terms of new theorems or strong relation statements from the extra axioms he has to tack on”.

Jamie Sawyer, a mathematics undergraduate at the University of Warwick writing in the Warwick Maths Society discussion forum, describes what Anderson has done as deciding that R ? { ? ? , + ? } {\displaystyle \mathbb {R} \cup \lbrace -\infty ,+\infty \rbrace } , the so-called extended real number line, is “not good enough […] because of the wonderful issue of what 0 0 {\displaystyle {\frac {0}{0}}} is equal to” and therefore creating a number system R ? { ? ? , ? , + ? } {\displaystyle \mathbb {R} \cup \lbrace -\infty ,\Phi ,+\infty \rbrace } .

Andrej Bauer stated that Anderson’s axioms of transreal arithmetic “are far from being original. First, you can adjoin + ? {\displaystyle +\infty } and ? ? {\displaystyle -\infty } to obtain something called the extended real line. Then you can adjoin a bottom element to represent an undefined value. This is all standard and quite old. In fact, it is well known in domain theory, which deals with how to represent things we compute with, that adjoining just bottom to the reals is not a good idea. It is better to adjoin many so-called partial elements, which denote approximations to reals. Bottom is then just the trivial approximation which means something like ‘any real’ or ‘undefined real’.”

Commentators have pointed out that in the field of mathematical analysis, 0 0 {\displaystyle {\frac {0}{0}}} (which Anderson has defined axiomatically to be ? {\displaystyle \Phi } ) is the limit of several functions, each of which tends to a different value at its limit:

  • lim x ? 0 x 0 {\displaystyle \lim _{x\to 0}{\frac {x}{0}}} has two different limits, depending from whether x {\displaystyle x} approaches zero from a positive or from a negative direction.
  • lim x ? 0 0 x {\displaystyle \lim _{x\to 0}{\frac {0}{x}}} also has two different limits. (This is the argument that commentators gave. In fact, 0 x {\displaystyle {\frac {0}{x}}} has the value 0 {\displaystyle 0} for all x ? 0 {\displaystyle x\neq 0} , and thus only one limit. It is simply discontinuous for x = 0 {\displaystyle x=0} . However, that limit is different to the two limits for lim x ? 0 x 0 {\displaystyle \lim _{x\to 0}{\frac {x}{0}}} , supporting the commentators’ main point that the values of the various limits are all different.)
  • Whilst sin ? 0 = 0 {\displaystyle \sin 0=0} , the limit lim x ? 0 sin ? x x {\displaystyle \lim _{x\to 0}{\frac {\sin x}{x}}} can be shown to be 1, by expanding the sine function as an infinite Taylor series, dividing the series by x {\displaystyle x} , and then taking the limit of the result, which is 1.
  • Whilst 1 ? cos ? 0 = 0 {\displaystyle 1-\cos 0=0} , the limit lim x ? 0 1 ? cos ? x x {\displaystyle \lim _{x\to 0}{\frac {1-\cos x}{x}}} can be shown to be 0, by expanding the cosine function as an infinite Taylor series, dividing the series subtracted from 1 by x {\displaystyle x} , and then taking the limit of the result, which is 0.

Commentators have also noted l’Hôpital’s rule.

It has been pointed out that Anderson’s set of transreal numbers is not, unlike the set of real numbers, a mathematical field. Simon Tatham, author of PuTTY, stated that Anderson’s system “doesn’t even think about the field axioms: addition is no longer invertible, multiplication isn’t invertible on nullity or infinity (or zero, but that’s expected!). So if you’re working in the transreals or transrationals, you can’t do simple algebraic transformations such as cancelling x {\displaystyle x} and ? x {\displaystyle -x} when both occur in the same expression, because that transformation becomes invalid if x {\displaystyle x} is nullity or infinity. So even the simplest exercises of ordinary algebra spew off a constant stream of ‘unless x is nullity’ special cases which you have to deal with separately — in much the same way that the occasional division spews off an ‘unless x is zero’ special case, only much more often.”

Tatham stated that “It’s telling that this monstrosity has been dreamed up by a computer scientist: persistent error indicators and universal absorbing states can often be good computer science, but he’s stepped way outside his field of competence if he thinks that that also makes them good maths.”, continuing that Anderson has “also totally missed the point when he tries to compute things like 0 0 {\displaystyle 0^{0}} using his arithmetic. The reason why things like that are generally considered to be ill-defined is not because of a lack of facile ‘proofs’ showing them to have one value or another; it’s because of a surfeit of such ‘proofs’ all of which disagree! Adding another one does not (as he appears to believe) solve any problem at all.” (In other words: 0 0 {\displaystyle 0^{0}} is what is known in mathematical analysis as an indeterminate form.)

To many observers, it appears that Anderson has done nothing more than re-invent the idea of “NaN“, a special value that computers have been using in floating-point calculations to represent undefined results for over two decades. In the various international standards for computing, including the IEEE floating-point standard and IBM’s standard for decimal arithmetic, a division of any non-zero number by zero results in one of two special infinity values, “+Inf” or “-Inf”, the sign of the infinity determined by the signs of the two operands (Negative zero exists in floating-point representations.); and a division of zero by zero results in NaN.

Anderson himself denies that he has re-invented NaN, and in fact claims that there are problems with NaN that are not shared by nullity. According to Anderson, “mathematical arithmetic is sociologically invalid” and IEEE floating-point arithmetic, with NaN, is also faulty. In one of his papers on a “perspex machine” dealing with “The Axioms of Transreal Arithmetic” (Jamie Sawyer writes that he has “worries about something which appears to be named after a plastic” — “Perspex” being a trade name for polymethyl methacrylate in the U.K..) Anderson writes:

We cannot accept an arithmetic in which a number is not equal to itself (NaN != NaN), or in which there are three kinds of numbers: plain numbers, silent numbers, and signalling numbers; because, on writing such a number down, in daily discourse, we can not always distinguish which kind of number it is and, even if we adopt some notational convention to make the distinction clear, we cannot know how the signalling numbers are to be used in the absence of having the whole program and computer that computed them available. So whilst IEEE floating-point arithmetic is an improvement on real arithmetic, in so far as it is total, not partial, both arithmetics are invalid models of arithmetic.

In fact, the standard convention for distinguishing the two types of NaNs when writing them down can be seen in ISO/IEC 10967, another international standard for how computers deal with numbers, which uses “qNaN” for non-signalling (“quiet”) NaNs and “sNaN” for signalling NaNs. Anderson continues:

[NaN’s] semantics are not defined, except by a long list of special cases in the IEEE standard.

“In other words,” writes Scott Lamb, a BSc. in Computer Science from the University of Idaho, “they are defined, but he doesn’t like the definition.”.

The main difference between nullity and NaN, according to both Anderson and commentators, is that nullity compares equal to nullity, whereas NaN does not compare equal to NaN. Commentators have pointed out that in very short order this difference leads to contradictory results. They stated that it requires only a few lines of proof, for example, to demonstrate that in Anderson’s system of “transreal arithmetic” both 1 = 2 {\displaystyle 1=2} and 1 ? 2 {\displaystyle 1\neq 2} , after which, in one commentator’s words, one can “prove anything that you like”. In aiming to provide a complete system of arithmetic, by adding extra axioms defining the results of the division of zero by zero and of the consequent operations on that result, half as many again as the number of axioms of real-number arithmetic, Anderson has produced a self-contradictory system of arithmetic, in accordance with Gödel’s incompleteness theorems.

One reader-submitted comment appended to the BBC news article read “Step 1. Create solution 2. Create problem 3. PROFIT!”, an allusion to the business plan employed by the underpants gnomes of the comedy television series South Park. In fact, Anderson does plan to profit from nullity, having registered on the 27th of July, 2006 a private limited company named Transreal Computing Ltd, whose mission statement is “to develop hardware and software to bring you fast and safe computation that does not fail on division by zero” and to “promote education and training in transreal computing”. The company is currently “in the research and development phase prior to trading in hardware and software”.

In a presentation given to potential investors in his company at the ANGLE plc showcase on the 28th of November, 2006, held at the University of Reading, Anderson stated his aims for the company as being:

To investors, Anderson makes the following promises:

  • “I will help you develop a curriculum for transreal arithmetic if you want me to.”
  • “I will help you unify QED and gravitation if you want me to.”
  • “I will build a transreal supercomputer.”

He asks potential investors:

  • “How much would you pay to know that the engine in your ship, car, aeroplane, or heart pacemaker won’t just stop dead?”
  • “How much would you pay to know that your Government’s computer controlled military hardware won’t just stop or misfire?”

The current models of computer arithmetic are, in fact, already designed to allow programmers to write programs that will continue in the event of a division by zero. The IEEE’s Frequently Asked Questions document for the floating-point standard gives this reply to the question “Why doesn’t division by zero (or overflow, or underflow) stop the program or trigger an error?”:

“The [IEEE] 754 model encourages robust programs. It is intended not only for numerical analysts but also for spreadsheet users, database systems, or even coffee pots. The propagation rules for NaNs and infinities allow inconsequential exceptions to vanish. Similarly, gradual underflow maintains error properties over a precision’s range.
“When exceptional situations need attention, they can be examined immediately via traps or at a convenient time via status flags. Traps can be used to stop a program, but unrecoverable situations are extremely rare. Simply stopping a program is not an option for embedded systems or network agents. More often, traps log diagnostic information or substitute valid results.”

Simon Tatham stated that there is a basic problem with Anderson’s ideas, and thus with the idea of building a transreal supercomputer: “It’s a category error. The Anderson transrationals and transreals are theoretical algebraic structures, capable of representing arbitrarily big and arbitrarily precise numbers. So the question of their error-propagation semantics is totally meaningless: you don’t use them for down-and-dirty error-prone real computation, you use them for proving theorems. If you want to use this sort of thing in a computer, you have to think up some concrete representation of Anderson transfoos in bits and bytes, which will (if only by the limits of available memory) be unable to encompass the entire range of the structure. And the point at which you make this transition from theoretical abstract algebra to concrete bits and bytes is precisely where you should also be putting in error handling, because it’s where errors start to become possible. We define our theoretical algebraic structures to obey lots of axioms (like the field axioms, and total ordering) which make it possible to reason about them efficiently in the proving of theorems. We define our practical number representations in a computer to make it easy to detect errors. The Anderson transfoos are a consequence of fundamentally confusing the one with the other, and that by itself ought to be sufficient reason to hurl them aside with great force.”

Geomerics, a start-up company specializing in simulation software for physics and lighting and funded by ANGLE plc, had been asked to look into Anderson’s work by an unnamed client. Rich Wareham, a Senior Research and Development Engineer at Geomerics and a MEng. from the University of Cambridge, stated that Anderson’s system “might be a more interesting set of axioms for dealing with arithmetic exceptions but it isn’t the first attempt at just defining away the problem. Indeed it doesn’t fundamentally change anything. The reason computer programs crash when they divide by zero is not that the hardware can produce no result, merely that the programmer has not dealt with NaNs as they propagate through. Not dealing with nullities will similarly lead to program crashes.”

“Do the Anderson transrational semantics give any advantage over the IEEE ones?”, Wareham asked, answering “Well one assumes they have been thought out to be useful in themselves rather than to just propagate errors but I’m not sure that seeing a nullity pop out of your code would lead you to do anything other than what would happen if a NaN or Inf popped out, namely signal an error.”.

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Australia/2006

[edit]

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France still a hot topic on college campuses

Thursday, April 21, 2005

On Monday residents of an apartment building just outside of Paris discovered a World War II bomb lodged in their chimney. Officials were able to defuse the device, reports All Headline News. However, there are other remnants of the World Wars that have been much more difficult for the French to defuse.

The prevalence of anti-French sentiments reached a frenzied zenith prior to the U.S. invasion of Iraq. While it seemed that the storm had calmed recently, this week’s release of Richard Chesnoff’s latest book, The Arrogance of the French: Why They Can’t Stand Us–and Why the Feeling Is Mutual, reminds us that this issue is not going away anytime soon. While there have been fewer sightings of “liberty toast” in recent months, from discussions with students in both the U.S. and France, this reporter found that America’s perception of the French remains a hot topic of discussion on college campuses.

Bryan Doeg, a military science student at the University of Central Florida, outlined the two prevailing thoughts that are the basis for many of these anti-French sentiments.

“Most of my fellow students feel that the French are politically and militarily weak,” said Doeg. “And their people are stuck up.”

Doeg believes that he and his classmates are not without reason for their perceptions about the French.

“They are weak because of France’s decline in power over the last century and it’s defeats against the Germans and Algerians,” Doeg said. “And most of my experiences regarding their arrogance comes from soldiers who visited France and were treated like untouchables by the locals.”

Southwest Missouri State (SMS) finance major, Fabian Florant, got straight to the point when discussing Doeg’s first assumption that the French are weak.

“Americans hate the French with a passion because of World War I and II,” Florant said.

However some students pointed to France’s involvement in the American Revolution, questioning how long America’s memory really is.

Jessica Morgan, an SMS English major, said that this and other examples have shown that France is far from being weak.

“They stood up against Hitler when he was in his prime for months before he occupied their country,” Morgan said. The fact that by the time we got there, the Germans were a heck of a lot weaker than they were when the French had to face them doesn’t seem to register.”

Morgan emphasized that France’s refusal to support U.S. war efforts is a resounding display of strength.

“It’s somewhat ironic that we call them weak,” Morgan said. “They stood up to the U.S. as well, daring the disapproval of the U.S. … and all we can do is throw childish insults back at them.”

Lysiane Lavorel, a native of France and college student studying English there, offered a tongue-in-cheek response to France’s supposed weakness while making reference to the 1996 film Independence Day.

“As for the French being weak, it’s true that in comparison with the strong and good Americans preventing aliens from invading the Earth, we are more than weak,” Lavorel said. “It’s true that we don’t have any real impact on the world, and I find it much more comfortable that way … I wouldn’t want to feel responsible for a war, for example.”

Doeg’s second assumption is that the French are arrogant, and Lavorel agrees again.

“Yes of course, I think we French are very arrogant,” Lavorel said.

Lavorel went on to explain her definition of French arrogance.

“It’s quite hard for us to see how people [Americans] seem to be so easily manipulated by government, big firms or media,” Lavorel said. “Because for most French, we have learned to become skeptical, doubtful and to make our own opinion on things. This appears to be very arrogant, doesn’t it?”

However, she pointed out that this is especially true of Parisians, from which she says many of American’s perceptions about the French are based.

“Even in France, they [Parisians] are said to be arrogant,” Lavorel said. “They are said to consider France as only composed of Paris, and provincial people are just hillbillies.”

An American student at a California university, who asked to remain anonymous to prevent the damage of his reputation among colleagues, said that he would describe 90 percent of the Parisians he has met as being arrogant.

“In an academic setting, this arrogance is particularly frustrating,” the source said. “Often the Parisians I know belittle other people when they understand a complicated concept better than another person.

“On one occasion, a Parisian made a fool out of a good friend of mine,” the source said. “My friend asked him how to model the eigenfunction of a microdisk resonator with finite-differences time-domain. He said ‘everyone knows you can derive these fields analytically.”

The source said that he is not perpetuating these stereotypes and that his preconceived notions do not alter how he perceives these interactions.

“Often I’ll hear someone say something like, ‘Oh and be careful when you meet him–he’s French,” the source said. “But you know, 99 percent of the time, all of the stereotypes prove to be perfectly true and the warning is useful.”

SMS media student Lydia Mann, who visited France for two weeks recently and has hosted two French foreign exchange students, said that these perceptions are based upon cultural differences.

“Americans, I think, misunderstand their culture which leads to their actions,” Mann said. “They make a point to make themselves individualistic, which people find rude.”

SMS English major Christin Green agrees and believes that this entire discussion that attempts to blanket such a large group of people is ridiculous.

“I want to learn about them with an open mind and a fresh perspective, unpolluted by bias or preconceived ideas,” Green said. “It is not my place to judge or make assumptions about an entire people. There are bad people everywhere. There are good people everywhere. Stereotypes ruin this foundation and build another one that is much more destructive.”

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International Tax Specialists

Find Out If You Qualify For Disability Insurance Today

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If you have been hurt in an accident and are no longer capable of supporting your family, you may be able to qualify for Disability Insurance benefits. Of course, this isn’t something that just happens. You are going to have to jump through a lot of hoops to get the benefits that you are entitled to. Because of this, you are going to want to hire someone to represent you. Your lawyer will be glad to meet up with you in his business office for a no-obligation consultation appointment. This will give him the opportunity to talk with you about the different things that you can expect.

Sometimes, qualifying for disability benefits can take several months. However, it is well worth it when you can receive a reasonable amount of money to pay some of your bills and support your family. Your Disability Insurance will also protect you when it comes to your medical bills. Finally, you will be able to get the medical attention that you need for your health problems. Your lawyer is going to show you what you need to do to get started with this process as soon as possible.

You have a lot going on right now, and you need someone to assist you through this process. It is understandable that you are confused. This is one of many reasons why you want someone to assist you with filling out your application. Your lawyer will be there until after you have gone to court. If you are worried about how you are going to pay your lawyer, you will be pleased to know that you won’t have to pay any money unless you win. Even then, you won’t have to pay any money out of your pocket because your lawyer will automatically take the money from your settlement. It works out well for everyone involved. Of course, you are going to need your doctor to verify the fact that you have health problems that prevent you from working. If you can do this, you should have no problems getting the benefits that you deserve. Get started with the necessary paperwork today.

US automaker GM reports losses of $6 billion

Thursday, May 7, 2009

United States automobile company General Motors announced it has lost US$6 billion in the first quarter of 2009, amidst heavy declines in revenues. Not including special items, the firm said it had lost a net $5.9 billion dollars, or $9.66 per share.

In the first quarter of last year, GM had reported a loss of $381 million, or $0.67 per share. Most financial analysts had forecast the automaker’s losses to be over $6.7 billion, or $11.05 per share. GM had also reported that it had spent $10.2 billion in an effort to prevent bankruptcy. The manufacturer has received over $15 billion in bailout money from the federal government.

The company has a deadline set at June 1 to draw up a restructuring plan. If it doesn’t do so by then, it will be obliged to file for bankruptcy protection.

“We’re focusing very much on the cost side of the business but once you start losing revenues you get into a vicious circle from which you can’t recover,” said Ray Young, the chief financial officer for GM.

“We continue to see a 60-80 percent chance of a GM bankruptcy. While the GM equity today is largely uninvestable, we increasingly believe GM may emerge substantially stronger from a bankruptcy – provided the Chapter 11 process is not overly drawn out – particularly given the scope of targeted dealer cuts,” analyst Himanshu Patel said.

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Vestas protesters sacked with immediate effect

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Eleven of the 25 workers at the Vestas factory in Newport, Isle of Wight, England who have been carrying out a sit-in since Monday July 20 have been sacked with immediate effect.

According to one of the protesters known as “Mike”, the occupiers were given their dismissal notices concealed under slices of their evening meal of pizza. The company said that the protesters have had ample opportunity to air their point of view, and had no choice but to sack eleven of the twenty five workers that they had positively identified; and that given that the fact that the action constituted a “fundamental breach” of trust, that the eleven would not be entitled to redundancy packages. A press release from the company said that Vestas “saw no other choice than to dismiss the 11 employees, who the company has positively identified as the employees currently participating in the occupation of the factory.”

The protesters remained upbeat, vowing to continue their occupation and have called upon the UK government to save the 625 jobs and to nationalise the Danish owned factory. Occupier Ian Terry told the BBC that if the occupiers are forced out, they plan to leave the building “peacefully”.

Vestas management were dealt a setback today in ending the occupation as Newport County Court ruled that the papers accusing the occupiers of aggravate trespass and requiring they surrender the office they occupy by July 29 were improperly served. The case has been adjourned until Tuesday August 4. In court, Judge Graham White said he was “distinctly uncomfortable” with what he perceived as Vestas’ effort to “get around the rules” in retaking the factory from the occupiers.

Legal representation for the Vestas workers had been offered by Bob Crow, secretary of the RMT trade union. Crow has pledged the “full solidarity” of the RMT and seven other unions with the workers occupying the plant.

Vestas management has also been providing the occupiers with hot meals in an apparent response to Crow’s announcement, made on July 24, that the RMT was planning on airlifting food into the factory by helicopter. Crow is meeting today with Ed Miliband, the Environment Minister.

Earlier in the week, Miliband pledged £6 million in funding to an expansion of Vestas’ Isle of Wight research and development centre, which currently employs 110 workers and could, said the Minister, be expanded to employ 40 more.

Rallies continued throughout the week in support of the Vestas occupiers. Since the occupation began, the Vestas workers have received declarations of support and solidarity from a wide swathe of the British left, including but not limited to: political parties Green Party, Respect, the Socialist Party, the Socialist Workers Party, the Alliance for Workers Liberty, and the Communist Party of Britain; the TUCG group, which brings together the BFAWU, FBU, NAPO, NUJ, PCS, POA, RMT, and URTU; and environmental groups Greenpeace, the Campaign against Climate Change, Climate Camp, and Workers’ Climate Action, who claims credit for initiating the campaign to occupy the factory. Attendees of the Big Green Gathering, a large annual environmentalist rally which was due to take place starting today but was suddenly canceled on Sunday, are being encouraged to go to the Isle of Wight and take part in support rallies for Vestas instead.

Speaking to Wikinews about the “redgreen” coalition supporting the occupation, a spokesman for the Alliance for Workers’ Liberty said: “We think this struggle is important on at least three grounds — it is central to the struggle for jobs, it is central to the struggle for the environment, and it is central to the struggle for rebuilding the labour movement.”

Photographs shared with Wikinews by the occupiers show the occupiers, mostly young men, talking, carrying out everyday tasks, and keeping in touch with the outside world via mobile phones. The use of mobile telephones in the Vestas occupation has given the press remarkable access to the occupiers and provided an effective platform for relaying their demands and feelings to the media. In contrast, Vestas’s designated media contact for the United Kingdom is on vacation. Attempts to reach Vestas Newport factory manager Patrick Weir, whom a Vestas representative at the company’s Danish headquarters stated was handling press inquiries regarding the occupation, received no reply.

Vestas plans to close the factory on July 31, citing the difficulties of obtaining planning permission for wind farms in the United Kingdom. All blades manufactured at Vestas’ Newport plant are sent to the United States. 1900 employees of the company in Northern Europe face job losses, 625 of them in Vestas’s plants in the south of England.

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European Union Council to accept software patent directive

December 22, 2004

The controversial European Union Directive on the Patentability of Computer Implemented Inventions, also called the “software patent directive” has been put to rest for 2004. The directive was expected to easily pass through the European Council’s Fisheries Council on Tuesday, December 21, but was removed from the agenda at the request of Poland’s Minister of Science and Computerisation, Wlodzimierz Marcinski.

The directive’s opponents, some of whom had conceded defeat on Tuesday before the vote was taken, will continue the debate informally until meetings resume in 2005.

Software developers, who supported the European Parliament‘s proposal last year to definitively rule out software patents, welcomed the delay as a chance to reintroduce those provisions into the current draft.

Florian Mueller, campaign manager of NoSoftwarePatents.com, which is supported by three IT companies (1&1, Red Hat, and MySQL AB), applauded Poland’s move.

“The Polish government deserves greatest admiration for its courage!” said Mueller in a press release. “Now Europe has the opportunity to have a constructive debate on the severe shortcomings of the current Council text, under the new Luxembourgish EU presidency next year.”

Germany’s representative also backed the delay, saying it would allow everyone to align the current proposal to changes proposed by the European Parliament last year.

“We were well aware that [the current proposal] has room for improvement with an eye to the objective of arriving at a consensus position between the EU Council and the European Parliament,” Germany’s Federal Minister of Justice Brigitte Zypries said in a Tuesday statement. “We will continue to work constructively toward finding a solution that even better meets the needs of those concerned than the decision taken in May of this year.”

On May 18, 2004 EU Council reached a political agreement on a “Common Position” on the directive which ignored the European Parliament’s vote from last year. The Council vote generated a lot of controversy. Later, the Dutch parliament failed to convince its EU representatives to reverse their vote.

According to the new voting weights which took effect on November 1, the majority needed to formally adopt the Common Position (after translations were done) is questionable. The 20 countries that supported the Directive on May 18 fall short of the new qualified majority by 16 votes.

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