Free to call ourselves Muslim in India, say minority Ahmadiyyas

first_imgTayyab Ali, 92, lies on a rusty cot in a large house with a courtyard full of plants. Clad in an off-white kurta, he peers intently through thick glasses as he says, “I moved here in 1946 to protect our heritage. I am still doing the same thing.”Tayyab Ali Bengali, as he likes to be called, had migrated from what is now Bangladesh. He was one of the 313 Ahmadiyyas who, at the time of the Partition, had chosen to stay back in Qadian in Punjab’s Gurdaspur district. It was here that the sect’s founder, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, had established a religious community in 1889. The Ahmadiyyas believe that their founder was the “promised messiah” of the Muslims, meant to propagate the teachings of Prophet Mohammad. But the majority Sunni Muslims believe the Prophet to be the last messiah. This fundamental difference in religious belief has meant that the Ahmadiyyas are a persecuted minority in every Islamic state.In Pakistan, where over 4 million Ahmadiyyas reside, an ordinance passed by the government in 1984 declared them as “non-Muslims”. It also made it a criminal offence for members of this community to practise Islam or claim to be Muslims.As for the Ahmadiyyas, they call themselves a “revival movement in Islam”, one that rejects “terrorism” and believes in the “jihad of the pen” as opposed to a “jihad of the sword”.Mr. Ali is proud to be a ‘Darvesh’, the title given to each of the 313 who chose to stay in India after the 1947 Partition, leaving their families in Pakistan. He recalls attending a few sermons given by Ahmadiyya leaders in 1945, after which he decided to join the sect. He moved to Qadian the following year.“My parents were Sunnis. They stopped me but I didn’t listen to them. After Partition, my father sent me a money order and asked me to come back. But I sent the money order back,” he says. He last travelled to see his family over 50 years ago, in what was then East Pakistan, but returned in four days. “The environment was hostile. My parents didn’t treat me well. I came back,” he recalls. In India, he says, he wakes up for fajr, the first of the five prayers through the day, rests, eats, and goes to watch kids play football in the evening.The only tough time, he recalls, was the year following Partition. “We lived like prisoners, with a bare minimum of food, for over a year. We couldn’t get out of Qadian. A year later, I started playing football and volleyball, and that became a reason for me to get out of Qadian sometimes for tournaments,” Mr. Ali says.India’s Ahmadiyya population is about 1.5 lakh, About 6,000 of them live in Qadian in a settlement spread across 1,500 acres. It has a residential colony, two mosques, State board-affiliated schools for both girls and boys, a religious college, a few manufacturing units, including a chapatti-making unit, playgrounds, community halls, and religious monuments.Self-sustaining communityModelled as a self-sustaining township of sorts, the community enjoys its own administration, known as the ‘Secretariat’, with separate departments for expenditure, construction, audit, general affairs, information technology, waseehat and jaidaat. All the department heads are appointed by the ‘Khalifa’, or fifth successor of the founder, Mirza Masroor Ahmad. The Khalifa is based in London, which has now become the headquarters of the community.“Most of the money to run the community comes from donations by our members across the country. A significant part of it is generated by a system wherein those who pledge allegiance to the community donate 10% of their property and monthly salary to the administration,” says Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat’s (AMJ) spokesperson Tariq Ahmed. Many members of the community live in houses owned by the sect, pay a nominal rent, and work at the Secretariat.Nasir Waheed, who handles accounts at the Secretariat, says that he gets a salary of just ₹7,000 a month but is grateful for the peaceful life. “My children study in the community school where the fees are low. And because I work for the community, there are a lot of benefits,” he says, adding that his father was a Darvesh. “He worked for free in the initial years and started with a salary of ₹5”.Mr. Waheed’s wife, Swalehah Waheed (37), says the women are mostly occupied in religious programmes scheduled through the year. The entire settlement is divided into 13 sub-areas, each headed by a woman who is responsible for the ‘religious guidance’ of the women of her subdivision. “They give us books of our Khalifa to read and there are regular discussions around it. Every now and then, religious programmes are organised where women and minor girls share what they have read,” says Ms. Waheed, who has a master’s degree in political science from Panjab University.While there are many like Ms. Waheed, there are also women like Tahira Maqbool. Ms. Maqbool is now an Indian citizen but was a Pakistani until two years ago. The 34-year-old mother of three recalls life back “home” in Faisalabad and the pain of living there.‘Home’ truths “I was born in Faisalabad and stayed there till I got married in 2003. It’ll always be home because I’ve spent my childhood there. But in Pakistan we are treated worse than animals,” she says. Recalling an incident, she describes how her brother was once stopped on the street for particular reason, slapped around, and asked to change his faith.Tehmida (29), also a Pakistani born and brought up in Karachi, got married in India in 2013. She, too, has experienced persecution. “I was a bright student in college and my teachers loved me. But the day they came to know that I was an Ahmadiyya, their attitude towards me changed completely. They even asked me to leave the college. I said I’ll only leave if you make a formal complaint.”Unfortunately, for the married Pakistani women in Qadian, the ordeal doesn’t end even after they leave their home country. In India, life without citizenship is not easy either.“Sometimes, I feel like a prisoner because I have to renew my visa every year. I got married here and my four-year-old son is also an Indian. But I can’t leave Qadian. To travel out of this town, I need a No Objection Certificate from the Indian government. This remains a huge problem,” says Ms. Tehmida, adding that her friends from Pakistan often ask her if she has visited Mumbai or the Taj Mahal. “What could I say?”Slow citizenship process Tears roll down the eyes of Ms. Maqbool as she recalls the time her father passed away, in April 2012. She could not go and see him one last time as she had submitted her passport to the Indian government as part of her citizenship application process. “It is a very slow process,” she says. “I received the citizenship certificate only in April 2016.” Rukaiyya Khalam (52), from Pakistan’s Rabwah, has a similar story. She came to India in 1994 and started her citizenship process right then. “My mother passed away in 1996. But there is a requirement that in order to get citizenship, I should not leave India for seven years after I come here. So I didn’t go. Now, more than 20 years later, I am still not an Indian national,” she says.Ms. Tehmida, however, is happy in one respect. “I am free to practise my beliefs the way I want”.Mr. Ahmed, too, dwells on the relief in being able to freely call oneself a Muslim.In September, the Pakistani government had removed Princeton economist Atif Mian, an Ahmadiyya, from the newly set up Economic Advisory Council because of opposition from the Sunni majority. “In Pakistan, we can’t keep the Koran. We can’t celebrate Id. We can’t publish any of our books or periodicals. We can’t greet with Assalamu alaikum. There is not a single month when our people are not martyred. How would they accept one of us in the national Economic Advisory Council? India and most of the 211 other countries where our people live are extremely tolerant in this matter as compared to Pakistan,” he says.Members of the community say that they can lead a normal life In India, like any other Muslim, so long as they don’t show that they’re Ahmadiyya. Mansoor Ahmad, a local who often visits his relatives in Delhi, says that his nieces and nephews go to a private college and none of their friends really care what community they are from. “But it’s not always like this. There have been instances when hardliners in Ludhiana have created a ruckus because of our presence during religious programmes. But even on those occasions things never escalated to violence,” he says.last_img read more

Recruitment racket of NSCN (IM) busted in Nagaland, two held

first_imgSecurity forces have busted a recruitment racket of the National Socialist Council of Nagalim (Isak-Muivah) in Nagaland and rescued 32 people during an operation, an official said. Two cadres of the outfit were arrested in this connection.Based on a specific input that a group of people was being taken by NSCN (IM) cadres to Aopao camp in Mon district, a joint team of the Army and the Assam Rifles intercepted a vehicle on Mon-Aboi road on November 21 and foiled the bid, Defence PRO Lt. Col. Sumit Sharma said.Two NSCN (IM) cadres were apprehended and 32 people hailing from Laokkun, Tizit town, Jaboka, Nokzang, Hatothi (Naginimora) and Chingphoi villages were rescued.The people had been lured by the outfit on the pretext of providing jobs, he said.Two accused were handed over to the police on November 22 for further investigation, the PRO added.last_img read more

UFC: Rival Cormier responds to Jones’ failed drug test

first_imgWATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:43PDEA holds surprise drug test at bus terminal in QC for ‘Undas’01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief “We as athletes are entitled to due process, and I will refrain from saying much more until I know exactly what happened,” he said.Still, the 38-year-old former Olympian can’t help but dwell on the disappointing results of their match last July.“In my mind, on July 29, I competed and I lost. I thought Jon Jones was the better man that day,” he said. “I don’t know what to think anymore. I can’t believe we are going through all of this again. We will see what happens next.”He also expressed gratitude to the fans who stuck with him during his tough times. “Thank you to all my fans who have supported me during this dark time. I love you all very much.”  Khristian Ibarrola /raADVERTISEMENT Daniel Cormier lands a solid right to the face of Jon Jones during their fight at UFC 182 in January.  AP FILE PHOTOUFC Light Heavyweight champion Jon Jones’ return to glory was shortlived, as he reportedly tested positive for an anabolic steroid and would most likely receive yet another suspension.READ: UFC champ Jon Jones flagged for another failed doping testADVERTISEMENT LIST: Class, gov’t work suspensions during 30th SEA Gamescenter_img The news comes less than a month after he reclaimed the title from fierce adversary Daniel Cormier via a brutal knockout. The former champion recently spoke to MMAFighting about Jones’ most recent debacle.“It’s hard to find words to describe how I’m feeling right now,” he told the news outlet. “I’m disappointed to hear the news. It’s very emotional.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutThe US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) made the news public on Tuesday (Wednesday in Manila) but urged the public to “let due process occur before drawing any conclusions about Mr. Jones.”Despite their differences, Cormier elected to let the investigation proceed before making his assumptions. Read Next MOST READ Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses SEA Games: PH volleybelles in semis, eye crucial win vs Vietnam UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension SEA Games: PH’s Alisson Perticheto tops ice skating short program View commentslast_img read more

PH volleybelles bow to Vietnam, draw Thailand in semis

first_imgSEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief SEA Games: PH’s Alisson Perticheto tops ice skating short program Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Arellano pulls rug from under St. Benilde, ends four-game skid Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC LATEST STORIES PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games PLAY LIST 03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games05:25PH boxing team determined to deliver gold medals for PH02:25PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd00:50Trending Articles01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games03:04Filipino athletes share their expectations for 2019 SEA Games00:45Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games View comments MOST READ UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension The Philippines was hoping for a win that would have given the team a lighter semifinal opponent but will now have to deal with Thailand, which experts have tagged as the gold favorite in this event.But the Filipinos continue to hold on to hope.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“We can never tell, the ball is round,” said PH coach Francis Vicente. “We tend to play better when we are up against the wall.”Vietnam overcame the Philippines’ tough stand in the first and third sets to score the victory and set up a semifinal duel with Indonesia. Read Next Vietnam, the 2015 SEA Games silver winner, relied on Tran Thi Thanh Thuy, who had 14 points and team captain Nguyen Thi Ngoc Hoa, who made 11.Alyssa Valdez topscored with 11 points, while Jaja Santiago added 10. Jovelyn Gonzaga had seven, and Aby Marano five. The Vietnamese will face Indonesia in the other group that Thailand swept. Semis is on Saturday.“Everybody played well. We fought well except in the second set,” said Vicente.Down by two sets, the star-studded Philippines stormed to a 16-12 lead in the third but soon encountered problems in service receives and failed to close out the frame.“We should be happy with the result, they did their best but in the second set I don’t know what happened,” bared the mentor.“We lost by a big margin and I was surprised because we used the same combinations,” he said. “In the third set we changed, it clicked but we couldn’t sustain it.”ADVERTISEMENT WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding LIST: Class, gov’t work suspensions during 30th SEA Games LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games Alyssa Valdez of the Philippines attacks the defense of Vietnam during their women’s volleyball match in the 29th Southeast Asian Games. The Vietnamese prevailed, 26-24, 25-12, 25-23. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/SEA GAMES POOLKUALA LUMPUR—The Philippine women’s volleyball team must now take the road it had hoped to avoid in the semifinals.The Nationals are now headed to a semifinal showdown against world-class Thailand after absorbing a stinging 26-24, 25-12, 25-23 defeat to Vietnam Friday at MITEC Hall 11.ADVERTISEMENT Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesseslast_img read more

a month agoChelsea boss Lampard says Mount could make Liverpool clash

first_imgChelsea boss Lampard says Mount could make Liverpool clashby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveChelsea boss Frank Lampard says Mason Mount could make their clash on Sunday against Liverpool.Mount, who has scored three goals in Chelsea’s opening five league games, was forced off early in Tuesday’s Champions League defeat to Valencia.”He’s got a chance,” Lampard said. “The image of the tackle afterwards made it look really bad, but hopefully it’s not so bad.”We’re trying to get him moving today and it’s one I’ll have to call just before the game with another 24 hours in the bank.”The good thing with Mason is his attitude is so good that he’ll give everything to get out there and play for this club, particularly in a game of this size.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

21 days agoGranit ​Xhaka ‘very proud’ of Arsenal captaincy

first_imgGranit ​Xhaka ‘very proud’ of Arsenal captaincyby Freddie Taylor21 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveArsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka admits that he is extremely proud that he was named club captain recently.Boss Unai Emery took the decision to give Xhaka the armband after consulting with the coaching staff and other squad members.The Swiss midfielder is divisive among supporters, but those who train with him every day see his value.”I’m very proud,” he told Arsenal Player. “It’s made me very happy because when I came here, I had a lot of experience before with the Switzerland national team and I was the captain in Germany as well. “When I came here, there were a lot of great players, good personalities, and it was a big step for me to be the captain here as well. “Now I’m the official captain here and it makes me very proud to be the captain of this great club.” About the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

ESPN Accidentally Airs Audio Of Dari Nowkhah Making Fun Of Media After Nick Saban Segment

first_imgalabama head coach nick saban at the sec championship gameATLANTA, GA – DECEMBER 01: Head coach Nick Saban of the Alabama Crimson Tide reacts after defeating the Georgia Bulldogs 35-28 in the 2018 SEC Championship Game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on December 1, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)SEC Media Days continued Wednesday morning, with Alabama’s Nick Saban taking the podium first. The Crimson Tide head coach didn’t face very many tough questions, however, and the ESPN broadcast team apparently noticed.After Saban’s presser ended, ESPN forgot to cut the audio on a few of its analysts’ microphones. Host Dari Nowkhah was heard making chicken noises, implying that the media was scared to ask Saban tough questions. He also said that Saban “owns” the media. He later owned up to the mistake on-air.ESPN broadcasters (not realizing mic was live) made chicken sounds and said Saban “owns the media” because nobody asked about Cam Robinson— Bill Landis (@BillLandis25) July 13, 2016@SECNetwork cuts to commercial and you hear @ESPNDari ask the question “You think he (Saban) owns the media?” #SECMD16— Justin Nails (@justinnails) July 13, 2016When @SECNetwork doesn’t realize their still live & says “Nick Saban Owns The Media” #Whoops #SECMD16 @finebaum @johnP_hayes— #Tribe17 (@NoleNationFSU) July 13, 2016And @ESPNDari owns up to it. Kudos to him. Great segment all around on reaction to Saban’s presser— Eric Bowman (@E_ROCK12) July 13, 2016It was expected that someone in the media would ask Saban about the status of star offensive lineman Cam Robinson, who was arrested on multiple charges this past May. That didn’t happen though.Saban likely won’t make it through the day without being asked about Robinson, but it was a bit surprising that it wasn’t one of the first questions on the docket.last_img read more

Drewry Container Carriers Still Face High Risk of Failure

first_imgzoom Privately-owned container carriers could risk losing shippers’ trust if they do not provide any data on their level of indebtedness and balance sheet strength, according to shipping consultancy Drewry.The recent failure of South Korean carrier Hanjin Shipping has exposed the high level of financial risk that exists and created renewed demand for financial transparency.While Hanjin’s financial position was at the extreme edges and its demise is not expected to create a domino effect, a number of major carriers are still struggling and the risk of another following the same path as the Korean line cannot be discounted, Drewry said.Drewry’s Z-score carrier financial stress index sunk to its lowest ever point following the first-half 2016 results. The decline in the Z-score index has coincided with the heavy reduction in container freight rates that dropped to historical lows in the second-quarter.“As freight rates staged something of a recovery in third-quarter we expect to see some uptick to the Z-score when the third-quarter 2016 results are published, while the removal of Hanjin from the sample will also benefit the average score. Nonetheless, carriers will almost certainly continue to reside in the so-called ‘distress zone’,” Drewry said.Based on the latest available financial reports Drewry’s Z-score table shows that only two, namely, A.P. Moller-Maersk and OOIL, of the 14 selected companies scored high enough to make it to the cautionary ‘grey zone’, with the remainder struggling in the ‘distress zone’.With shippers expected to pay much closer attention to the financial risks when selecting carriers in future, carriers themselves will need to be sure of the financial health of their alliance and service partners, or potentially risk losing customers.last_img read more

2014 NFL Preview Great Players And Gambling Problems In The NFC North

This includes a record 13 touchdowns (the previous career record for any punt returner was 10). Hester also has five touchdowns from kickoff returns (good for eighth on the all-time list9Despite playing for a good defensive team for much of his career and not even returning kicks full-time for parts of it.) and is looking to break his present tie with Deion Sanders for most non-offensive touchdowns in NFL history.Kick and punt returns normally aren’t a big enough part of the game for a good returner to produce much value unless he also does other things well. But Hester is so insanely good he may be as close to an exception as you’ll ever see.Determining how much value Hester added on kick returns is relatively simple. Taken on a season-by-season basis, a typical NFL kick returner would have scored about 1.8 touchdowns on Hester’s attempts, while Hester had 6.0. This leads to about an extra .20 points per game.10Actually it’s .204 points per game, compared to .208 if you estimate the value of additional field position directly.But where things get interesting is with punts. With teams taking such crazy measures to avoid giving him the ball, Chicago’s punt return game benefited greatly whether Hester actually touched the ball or not.11Giving Hester credit for Chicago’s entire return game is neither an aggressive nor a conservative assumption. If the rest of the special teams squad was below average, it’s possible that Hester provided even more value than the squad as a whole.Since 2006, when Hester joined the team, Chicago has had the highest number of yards per punt return, resulting in the best average starting position, and has scored a touchdown on one of every 21 returns. The average for teams other than Chicago was one TD every 82 punt returns. And that’s not even counting all the times other teams punted short or out of bounds to avoid a return.According to ESPN’s “expected points added” metric, Chicago’s punt return game was worth about .15 expected points over expectation for each of the 668 punts they faced, or about .80 points per game total.Combining this .80 with the .20 Hester gained returning kickoffs, he was probably worth around 1 point per game overall.We’re obviously not talking Aaron Rodgers-type value here. But football is a 46-on-46 sport: It’s hard for any one player (aside from a quarterback) to matter much. A reliable 1 point per game is pretty significant.Chicago had an average margin of -2.1 points per game last year, so with Hester’s departure, let’s say the team is starting out in a 3-point hole. If the offense gets worse or the defense gets better, it could go either way from there.Detroit LionsExpected wins: 8.3Playoff probability: 38 percent (25 percent to win the NFC North)Super Bowl win probability: 3 percent Last year, with quarterback Aaron Rodgers missing half the season due to a broken collarbone, the Packers finished with just an 8-7-1 record, and gave up more points than they scored. Despite all that, they still eked out an NFC North division championship for the third year in a row.In the eight games in which Rodgers played more than the opening drive, the Packers went 6-2 with an average margin of victory of 7.4 points. In the eight games that featured the smorgasbord1Matt Flynn, Scott Tolzien and Seneca Wallace all started games in Rodgers’s absence. of Packers backups, they went 2-5-1 with an average margin of defeat of 8.8 points. It’s difficult to disentangle a quarterback’s performance from that of his teammates (or his coaches), but the Packers’ 2013 results are perhaps the best evidence yet that Rodgers is the real deal.2Though not quite Peyton-esque.Since Rodgers took over for Brett Favre in 2008, the Packers have been one of the NFL’s best franchises. They’ve won the fourth-most games (they’re in essentially a four-way-tie behind the Patriots) and a Super Bowl (as many of those as anyone else over that period, and one more than the Patriots). ESPN’s Total Quarterback Rating (QBR) is one of the most all-encompassing quarterback rating systems out there today.3Note this isn’t necessarily a compliment. In a phenomenon I like to call “The Paradox of Quarterback Metrics,” beyond a certain point, the more information a QB metric takes into account, the less it tends to tell you about the quarterback. Rodgers’s QBR in the last six years is 72.9, second only to Peyton Manning’s 80.7. Rodgers performs fantastically well in a variety of other quarterback metrics.But that’s what happens when you a) play for a good team and b) don’t throw interceptions. These are strongly related. Most interceptions are thrown when the quarterback’s team is trailing (about twice as many as when it’s ahead), and they become more and more likely the more his team is down or the closer they come to the end of the game4Being ahead or behind one score is 0-8 points, two scores is 9-16 points, three scores is 17+ points.:Interceptions are often (even largely) a product of completely rational risk-taking by desperate quarterbacks. A logical implication of this is that if a quarterback is too conservative, he can throw too few interceptions, which can be just as bad as throwing too many.Despite his various successes, it’s possible Rodgers fits this description of an overly conservative quarterback. For example, with his team down by two or more scores (9+ points) he has thrown only three interceptions out of 354 passes attempted (0.8 percent) in his career. This is typically when quarterbacks throw the most INTs, because they’re trying to get their teams back into the game, and high-risk strategies often give them the best chance to win. Overall, quarterbacks throw interceptions about 3.5 percent of the time on average in those situations, with even most great quarterbacks breaking 3.0 percent. Peyton Manning, for example, has averaged 3.1 percent, Drew Brees has averaged 3.3 percent, and even Tom Brady has thrown 2.3 percent (slightly above his career average).5Based on play-by-play from 2001 through 2013.Being insufficiently willing to gamble even when circumstances are dire can be good for a QB’s stats, while bad for his team. And there’s evidence of this in Rodgers’s record as well: He has only engineered six fourth-quarter comebacks in his career — good for 149th all time (Russell Wilson already has eight).There’s nothing wrong with giving your team the lead and then keeping it.6I vividly but hazily recall this being Troy Aikman’s response when someone asked him about his lack of fourth-quarter comebacks back in the ’90s — and he had one about every 10 games. But Rodgers has averaged one fourth-quarter comeback every 14.5 games. This is staggeringly low, even for a player whose team isn’t behind that often. Brady has played for an even more consistently good team and has a fourth-quarter comeback once every 6.2 games. Both brothers Manning have averaged one every six games, Ben Roethlisberger has one every 6.2, Drew Brees and Joe Flacco have one about every eight. Favre (surprisingly) had one only every 9.9 games.But the good news for Packers fans is that Rodgers has some pretty low-hanging room for improvement: If he starts taking more calculated risks (likely sacrificing his stats a little in the process), the Pack may be even more dangerous.Chicago BearsExpected wins: 8.4Playoff probability: 39 percent (25 percent to win the NFC North)Super Bowl win probability: 3 percent ­Editor’s Note: FiveThirtyEight is running a series of eight NFL previews, one division at a time, to highlight the numbers that may influence each team’s season. America’s favorite weekly soap opera is about to begin; get prepped.Green Bay PackersExpected wins (using implied power ratings from Las Vegas point spreads): 9.4Playoff probability: 55 percent (41 percent to win the NFC North)Super Bowl win probability: 6 percent Last year the Detroit Lions finished 7-9, the second-highest win total of quarterback Matthew Stafford’s career. Despite throwing for 4,650 yards and 29 TDs, Stafford now faces headlines like this one from Fox Sports: “Stafford needs to bounce back in a big way.”According to that article, Stafford “must cut down on his crucial mistakes when it’s make-or-break time.” Presumably, this refers to the six fourth-quarter interceptions Stafford threw in one-score games last year.But, see above: Interceptions are hard to interpret. Stafford also had seven touchdowns under those circumstances, and four of his six interceptions were with his team trailing.12Also known as the best time to throw interceptions. So let’s break down Stafford’s interception rate a bit further:With his team down 2+ scores, his interception rate is 2.5 percent. If anything, this may be too low.With his team down one score or less, his interception rate is 2.8 percent. This is probably just about right.With the game tied, his interception rate is 2.2 percent, which is below average.With his team up 2+ scores, his interception rate is about 3 percent, which is a little high, but not necessarily a problem considering the sample size.With his team up one score or less, his interception rate is pretty high: 3.8 percent overall and a whopping 6.7 percent in the second quarter.In other words, if there’s one spot where Stafford has been making an unusually high number of mistakes it hasn’t been “make-or-break time,” it has been earlier in the game, when his team is up one or fewer scores and most QBs would play it safe (league average interception rate is around 2.3 percent under those circumstances).Of course, while throwing interceptions with your team up one score isn’t generally wise, it could be worth it if it’s helping you gain a ton of touchdowns. Indeed, Stafford throws a good number of TDs in these situations.While that 4.5 percent is good, it’s only 0.5 percentage points better than average — in other words, it’s not a very good trade-off considering his interception rate under these circumstances is 1.5 percentage points higher than average.To generalize a bit, you can think of the sum of a player’s touchdown rate and interception rate as his “aggression level.” Stafford is a fairly aggressive quarterback overall, but his aggression level while ahead by one score or less in the second quarter is 10.4 percent, which is off the charts compared to the league average of 6.8 percent. This isn’t really the best time to get aggressive, and it isn’t really working for him.Minnesota VikingsExpected wins: 6.5Playoff probability: 17 percent (9 percent to win the NFC North)Super Bowl win probability: 1 percent Last season, the Chicago Bears finished 8-8, fitting for a team with one of the best offenses (not led by Peyton Manning) and one of the worst defenses in football. That’s a good excuse to talk about their special teams.For as yet unknown reasons, Chicago let its best player7Relative to his position. go.While Devin Hester never developed into the double-threat for Chicago that the team hoped (much less the triple-threat he was at the University of Miami), he is almost certainly the greatest punt returner in NFL history.8Some of that field position is no doubt due to Hester’s reputation and the fact that teams went to great lengths trying to avoid kicking him the ball — so he probably grabbed the ball in better positions. But the average Chicago field position from a non-Hester return was around the 30 yard line. And the fact that Hester was able to take so many returns and still do so much with them is remarkable in its own right. Adrian Peterson now has more than 10,000 yards rushing and 91 touchdowns in his seven-year career, giving him over 2,000 more yards and 24 more touchdowns than anyone in the last seven years. Yet the Vikings finished 5-10-1 last year, their third 10-loss season in four years. They haven’t had a top-10 offense since Brett Favre’s miracle year, nor before that since the Randy Moss era.The utility of the running game in football is still an open question. While pass-heavy offensive approaches typically gain points (and wins) more efficiently than run-heavy ones, we’re nowhere near game-theoretical dominance. In other words, however marginal it may become, the running game still has its uses:The threat of the running game forces defenses to defend multiple strategies, which makes the passing game more efficient.It’s low-risk and eats up the clock: A team that is ahead may be willing to give up a small amount of per-play value in order to shorten the remainder of the game and decrease the chances of a costly turnover.Runs gain positive yards more consistently than passes, which can be useful in a number of ways beyond average yardage. For example, very good running backs (or running games) set up a higher number of second-and-short situations than passes do, and these can be better than first downs.Of course for Nos. 1 and 2 to work most efficiently, you have to run effectively. And running effectively mostly means No. 3.While Peterson breaks a larger share of long runs than typical running backs, he is neither a consistent gainer nor a producer of high-leverage situations.Obviously Adrian Peterson’s long runs are worth something: They’re worth a lot of yards. But yards are easier than ever to come by in today’s game. No matter how great a running back is at breaking long ones, he’s not going to be as efficient at gobbling up yards as his team’s passing game is (no matter how mediocre the team’s quarterbacks are).On the other hand, the better a team is at strategically maximizing the running game, the more valuable those “bonus” yards become — because the running plays that produce them are no longer taking the place of passes.In other words, if you can’t run consistently, it doesn’t matter if you can break a bunch of long runs, because you’d still be better off passing. But if you can run consistently, those long runs become gravy.None of this is to say that Peterson’s shortcomings necessarily reflect poorly on his running skills, no more than we can say the same for any running back’s underperformance. Peterson has simply produced a little below average at the bread-and-butter stuff that keeps the running game relevant, and this undercuts the value of his long runs considerably. With a better offensive line, or quarterback, Peterson’s value would improve doubly.Read more of FiveThirtyEight’s NFL season previews. read more

The Warriors Klay Thompson Only Needs 079 Seconds To Beat You

PLAYERTEAMTOTAL Eric GordonHouston Rockets183 The Warriors’ offense already has a cheat code of sorts because of how thin they spread defenses with their shooting, but they also get a ton of mileage out of the threat Thompson poses aside from his 22 points per game. Thompson’s star teammates find far more openings when playing alongside him because defenders know they can’t step too far away from the lethal shooter. That gives the two former MVPs on the roster true single coverage as opposed to double-teams. Curry and Durant each took advantage and shot nearly 50 and 57 percent from the field, respectively, when playing together alongside Thompson, per NBA Wowy. Watch here as the Clippers lose track of Durant while trying desperately to account for each member of the Warriors’ three leading scorers. The threat of Thompson’s jumper helps create an easy bucket underneath.Video Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/klaykdsteph.mp400:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Unsurprisingly, Curry and Durant’s field-goal percentage numbers fell to 46 percent and 50 percent, respectively, in their almost 400 minutes without Thompson.In turn, the other Warriors are engaging in near-perpetual motion to help spring Thompson free. Many of his jumpers stem from the Warriors’ unusual network of screens and picks — with the stars often setting improvisational back screens for role players and guards springing free big men. Still, Golden State works hardest to get Thompson open: He had a whopping 516 separate plays in which they brought him off a screen — a figure that led the NBA by a country mile. For context, Thompson got more shot attempts following a screen than 20 different teams in 2016-17, according to Synergy Sports.His role this past season was a far cry from what it was just four seasons ago, before Steve Kerr took over as coach, when the young Warriors utilized a much different style of offense. Back then, their attack was heavily rooted in stagnant 1-on-1 plays as opposed to the free-flowing system they currently run to perfection. In the course of one year, Golden State went from being dead-last in the NBA with 246.6 passes thrown per game in 2013-14 to seventh in the league with 315.9 passes per night in 2014-15 under Kerr.Under former coach Mark Jackson, Thompson got a steady diet of entry passes on the block and finished the 2013-14 season with an eye-popping 130 post-ups — the fifth-highest total among NBA guards that year, according to Synergy Sports. As jarring as that number sounds, consider this: Thompson has only posted up 137 times total in the three seasons since then.“I knew I wanted to install plenty of movement, and it just so happened that Klay turned himself into Reggie Miller and Rip Hamilton,” Kerr told me this week, citing two of the more elite shooters off screens in modern times. “To me, Klay’s the best guy in the league now at moving without the ball. It just comes natural to him, and it made him a natural fit with our offense.”One of Thompson’s best skills is his ability to score in bunches without possessing the ball all that much. These outbursts have become his trademark since his heroic 41-point, 11 3-pointer performance two seasons ago when the defending champion Warriors were on the cusp of postseason elimination in Oklahoma City. Among those averaging 20 points per game last season, Thompson tied with Brook Lopez for the league lead in lowest time of possession per game, at just 1.6 minutes, while the Warriors guard averaged the highest points-per-touch average. “This is a gunslinger that’s spitting out the ball before anyone can even get to him,” said Fraser, the Warriors assistant.Video Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/klaydefendedbykd.mp400:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Thompson told me that he’s made it a point since the age of 15 — when he attended a shooting camp and watched renowned shooting instructor Dave Hopla drill dozens of jumpers — to unload the ball faster.“[Hopla] said, ‘It doesn’t matter where your feet are as long as your shoulders are squared,’ ” Thompson said. “That’s really resonated with me ever since I was a kid. So now, every time I just try to get a good shot off and make sure my shoulders are square toward the rim, even if my feet are in an awkward place. If I’ve got a good base, and I can get some lift, that’s all I need.”Thompson’s uncanny ability to find the basket while barely able to see it — he tested this notion by taking, and making, triples in a Sports Science lab with the lights turned off — simply confirmed what many already knew about him: He can make the sorts of shots others wouldn’t even dream of taking.Asked about having a teammate of that stature, Durant smiled. “That’s the great part about it. I don’t have to play against that no more,” he said. “You can’t relax for a split second, or he’s gonna get a shot off.”Check out our latest NBA predictions. Thompson connected on 131 of 302 attempts within that release window, for a mark of 43.4%. For context, the leaguewide average percentage on all 3-pointers was 35.8%.Source: STATS SportVu C.J. MilesIndiana Pacers192 Trevor ArizaHouston Rockets152 OAKLAND, Calif. — Humans need oxygen, plants need sunlight, and NBA shooters need space to breathe. A cushion from a defender allows a player to do his job successfully: It gives him time to turn and face the basket, bend his knees to develop rhythm and square his feet.Then there’s Klay Thompson, who often does none of these things yet still hits threes at a better-than-40-percent clip and strikes fear in just about every NBA defense. “You ever had someone walk right up on you and talk a few inches away from your face?” asked Warriors assistant Bruce Fraser. “That’s Klay. It’s like he doesn’t mind not having space when he shoots.”Any number of things would correctly explain why the Warriors, who open their season tonight, are on the cusp of becoming a dynasty. Two-time MVP Stephen Curry is a game-breaking playmaker capable of bringing defenses to their knees in a way we’ve never seen. Pair his skill set with that of Kevin Durant, and you have a legitimate title contender. None of that even speaks to the defensive presence and edge Golden State often gets from Draymond Green.Yet Thompson’s quick-trigger attempts from deep might be the best barometer of success for the Warriors. Golden State won 95 percent of its games last season (going 43-2) when the swingman hit at least 40 percent of his shots from 3-point range, but the Warriors won just 69 percent (23-10) when Thompson connected on less than 40 percent.Guarding the 6-foot-7 Thompson is like a formal job interview: If you merely show up on time, rather than getting there a little early, it often means you’ve arrived too late. And God forbid you actually show up a little late — you might as well turn around and go home. Part of this is because Thompson is such a talented, pure shooter, but it’s also because he gets the ball out of his hands faster than any player in the NBA and can connect on his jumpers without having to dip his knees to generate a rhythm.Video Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/klayquicktrigger1.mp400:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Video Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/klayquicktrigger2.mp400:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.While Houston coach Mike D’Antoni has his Seven Seconds or Less strategy, Thompson has established his own version of hot potato this past season, in which he launched a total of 302 catch-and-shoot triples within 0.79 seconds of touching the ball, according to an analysis run by STATS SportVu at FiveThirtyEight’s request. The next-closest player, C.J. Miles, had just 192. What’s more, Thompson hits the quick-trigger triples at nearly the same clip, 43.4 percent,1131 of 302 as when he takes his time and composes himself. When told of these numbers, Thompson put it best: “Sheesh.” Tobias HarrisDetroit Pistons184 Stephen CurryGolden State Warriors180 Kristaps PorzingisNew York Knicks163 Channing FryeCleveland Cavaliers182 Nicolas BatumCharlotte Hornets160 Klay Thompson is the fastest sharpshooter, East or West3-pointers attempted within 0.79 seconds of catching the ball, 2016-17 Klay ThompsonGolden State Warriors302 Tony SnellMilwaukee Bucks157 read more

Womens soccer returns home to take on Fighting Illini

Junior midfielder Ellyn Gruber (5) attempts to win the ball during a match against Pittsburgh Aug. 28 at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. OSU won, 2-0.Credit: Shelby Lum / Photo editorNearly three weeks after the team’s last home game, the Ohio State women’s soccer team is scheduled to return to Columbus to face Illinois. The matchup with the Fighting Illini (5-2-1) will be the conference opener for the Buckeyes, as they look to improve upon their current 6-1-1 record, including a 3-0-1 slate at home.The Buckeyes are currently on a three-game winning streak, continuing last week with a sweep at the Hoosier Classic. After goals from junior midfielder Ellyn Gruber and senior midfielder Danica Wu, the Buckeyes defeated Central Michigan 2-0 Friday.Buckeye goalies, senior Rachel Middleman and sophomore Jillian McVicker, helped shut out a St. John’s team, 1-0, that had been averaging 3.5 goals per game.“I (was) very proud of our squad… to be put in a situation to play a rested team on a Sunday morning was unfortunate,” said coach Lori Walker. “We stepped up to the challenge and played very well as a team.”Following Sunday’s match, the Buckeyes have moved up near the top of the Big Ten in some defensive categories as they begin conference play Friday. OSU now ranks third in goals against and corner kicks allowed, and fourth in total goals allowed, only giving up five goals through its first eight games.The teams last met in Bloomington, Ind., for the 2012 Big Ten Tournament championship. The Buckeyes took home their third Big Ten tournament title when they defeated the Illini, 2-1.Coming into the season, the Fighting Illini were picked to finish third in the preseason coaches poll, one spot better than the Buckeyes.Offensively, Illinois is led by redshirt-junior forward Janelle Flaws with eight goals and senior midfielder Vanessa DiBernardo, who has four goals of her own. Although the Illini have scored 28 goals on the season, they have given up 18 goals defensively in eight games.The game is set to start at 5 p.m. at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. read more

Football Wide receiver Johnnie Dixon to remain at Ohio State for redshirt

Ohio State junior wide receiver Johnnie Dixon (1) scored the final touchdown in Ohio State’s 55-24 loss to Iowa on Nov. 4. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo EditorThere was some thought that redshirt junior wide receiver Johnnie Dixon might forgo his final year of eligibility at Ohio State and enter the NFL draft since he was finally healthy for a full season.But Dixon decided to turn down the opportunity and stay at Ohio State for one last season.Dixon posted a tweet of a video with the text “1 more” and a caption that read “Unfinished business!” The return gives head coach Urban Meyer a key cog on the outside for a new quarterback next season.Unfinished business! 1 last ride #Gobucks pic.twitter.com/NB9ehwe2te— Johnnie L. Dixon III (@YoungKing_JD5) January 12, 2018Dixon is the second receiver to announce his return to Ohio State for a fifth season. H-back Parris Campbell tweeted he would remain a Buckeye for his redshirt senior season.Dixon has dealt with continual knee issues since enrolling at Ohio State in 2014. He hadn’t been able to play more than half-season for the first three years in college, but he remained mostly injury free in 2017.Dixon caught 18 passes for 422 yards with eight touchdowns for the Buckeyes this season. He was one of quarterback J.T. Barrett’s best deep threats in the passing game, catching three touchdowns of more than 40 yards.The 5-foot-11 wideout from West Palm Beach, Florida, had his highlight moment against then-No. 2 Penn State in October, when he caught two touchdowns in the fourth quarter of Ohio State’s 15-point comeback victory against the Nittany Lions.He started in all but one game in 2017. read more

Karen Bradley UK culture secretary Karen Bradley h

first_imgKaren BradleyUK culture secretary Karen Bradley has said she is “minded” to refer 21st Century Fox’s full takeover of Sky to regulator Ofcom on public interest grounds.In a statement published Friday, Bradley said that said that she would make her final decision in the week beginning March 13 about whether to issue a European Intervention Notice.If issued, this would trigger an assessment by Ofcom and a Competition and Markets Authority report that would both be reviewed by Bradley.“I have, today, written to the parties to inform them that I am ‘minded to’ issue a European Intervention Notice on the basis that I have concerns that there may be public interest considerations – as set out in the Enterprise Act 2002 – that are relevant to this proposed merger that warrant further investigation,” said Bradley.“To be clear – I have not taken a final decision on intervention at this stage. In line with the guidance that applies to my quasi-judicial role I am inviting written representations from the parties and will aim to come to a final decision on whether to intervene in the merger within ten working days of today’s notification.”Speaking at the Deloitte Enders Media & Telecoms 2017 and Beyond conference in London last week, 21 Century Fox CEO James Murdoch claimed that the company’s consolidation of Sky will provide a major boost for creative industries in the UK, Germany and Italy.“We’re confident the enhanced scale and capabilities of the combined company will be a powerful driver of the creative industry’s vibrancy in Britain, plus in Italy, and in Germany, and in the global market, and a provider of better experiences for customers everywhere,” he said.“To do this at scale, which this combination enables, ensures that the Sky business can continue to compete within a competitive set that now includes some of the largest companies in the world, but none of whom have the local depth of investment and commitment to the UK and to Europe.”However, the plan remains controversial, with a group of UK cross-party politicians last month calling for Ofcom to launch a review into 21st Century Fox CEO James Murdoch’s suitability to hold a UK broadcasting licence.Ofcom carried out a test of whether Sky should hold a broadcast licence in 2011 at the height of the phone-hacking scandal. While Sky was cleared, the regulator criticised Murdoch – though it fell short of stating that he was not a fit and proper person to hold a broadcast licence.21st Century Fox agreed in December to pay £11.7 billion for the 61% it does not already own of Sky. The terms of the takeover a deal that will value the pay TV operator at £18.5 billion (€22 billion).last_img read more

Uber Hires Former Obama Campaign Manager to Battle the Big Taxi Cartel

first_img Next Article Uber Guest Writer Uber Hires Former Obama Campaign Manager to Battle the ‘Big Taxi Cartel’ 2 min read –shares Laura Entis August 19, 2014center_img Add to Queue Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. It’s been a tumultuous day at the executive level in the ridesharing sector today.Earlier this afternoon, news broke that Lyft COO Travis VanderZanden is leaving the company after an 18-month stint (rumor has it he clashed with the company’s founders). Not to be outdone, Uber’s CEO Travis Kalanick made a pretty significant announcement of his own, revealing that David Plouffe, President Obama’s former campaign manager and White House adviser, has been hired as the company’s new senior vice president of policy and strategy.Officially, Plouffe will oversee Uber’s global branding, communications and policy, but more succinctly, as Kalanick summed it up for Politico, he will be the transportation network’s “campaign manager.”Related: Lyft COO Exits in the Wake of Controversial NYC LaunchKalanick’s use of politically charged language to describe his company – “There’s an incumbent … the big taxi cartel … and we’re the challenger,” he told the outlet — emphasizes the important role Plouffe will play in helping Uber expand despite resistance from regulators and local governments.”Uber has been in a campaign but hasn’t been running one,” Kalanick wrote in a blog post announcing the news. “That is changing now.”In this respect, of course, both Plouffe’s extensive political experience and connections comes in handy. “We’ll be trying to change the point of view of established politicians, and there’s a lot of resistance coming from people who want to protect the status quo,” Plouffe told Politico.Plouffe, who managed both of Obama’s presidential campaigns and served as a senior adviser to the president, left the White House in January 2013.Related: Lyft and Uber Trade Barbs Over Cancelled Rides Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. Register Now »last_img read more

Glassbox Distances Competitors by Patenting Its Technology for Recording Web Sessions

first_imgGlassbox Distances Competitors by Patenting Its Technology for Recording Web Sessions MTS Staff WriterMay 10, 2019, 7:50 pmMay 10, 2019 Glassbox, the leading enterprise Digital Customer Management solution provider, announced that a patent for its technology to record web sessions has been approved by the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).The patent for “Systems and Methods for Recording Web Sessions” covers a proprietary technology in Glassbox’s digital customer management platform that records both client- and server-side, providing global enterprises with an evidential 360-degree view of their website and mobile app. Server-side website session recordings significantly reduce the overhead of client-side recording and provide visibility into scenarios that cannot be captured with client-side recording, such as bot investigations, fraud attempts, scraping, and HTTP errors.Marketing Technology News: Artificial Solutions and Rücker Lypsa Team-up to Deliver Conversational AI to the Automotive IndustryGlassbox’s technology breaks the dependency between server-side recording and external devices like TAP or even the need for SPAN port. As TAP or SPAN port are not required, this technology is ideal for cloud infrastructure or when access to network devices is not an option.Glassbox’s technology enables Tealeaf customers to migrate to Glassbox Cloud without losing any visibility into their production environments.“Client-recording is important, but it is only part of the ultimate digital truth, and enterprises cannot afford to lose session replay capabilities when migrating to the cloud,” said Glassbox CTO Yaron Gueta. “We created this technology to exceed the highest standards in the industry for quality and quantity of insights available to large enterprises. We’re very proud to have received the approval for the patent and appreciate the recognition that sets our technology apart from all other providers globally.”Marketing Technology News: Uberflip Named a Contender in Content Marketing Platforms for B2B Marketers for the First Time by Independent Research FirmGlassbox is the only enterprise-grade digital customer analytics platform that allows users to capture, index, search, retrieve, replay and drive real-time machine learning-driven insights from data related to digital customer journeys. It enables online customer experience professionals to receive automatic alerts about customer struggles and technical anomalies and act upon them. Glassbox does all this whilst meeting the highest security and privacy standards.Marketing Technology News: CloudShare Launches Flexible Sales Enablement Solution to Reduce Sales Friction, Illuminate Buyer Journeys and Empower Teams with Advanced Analytics customer management platformdigital customer analyticsGlassboxGlassbox CloudMarketing TechnologyNewsUSPTO Previous ArticleHUBX, The World’s First Anonymous B2B Marketplace Platform, Surpasses $200 Million in Revenue in First Year, Hires Industry Veteran as Chief Revenue OfficerNext ArticleSales Development Report: Bots, Chat Will Be the Next Big Thing, Live Call Still Dominates and GDPR Drives Changeslast_img read more

Opinion AI like HAL 9000 can never exist because real emotions arent

This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. Going back to AI, as emotions cannot be truly implemented in a program – no matter how sophisticated it may be – the reasoning of the computer can never be changed by its feelings. One possible interpretation of HAL’s strange “emotional” behaviour is that it was programmed to simulate emotions in extreme situations, where it would need to manipulate humans not on the basis of reasoning but by calling upon their emotional self, when human reason fails. This is the only way I can see that real world AI could convincingly simulate emotions in such circumstances. In my opinion, we will not, ever, build a machine that feels, hopes, is scared, or happy. And because that is an absolute prerequisite to any claim that we have engendered artificial general intelligence, we will never create an artificial mind outside life.This is precisely where the magic of 2001: A Space Odyssey lies. For a moment, we are led to believe the impossible, that pure science fiction can override the facts of the world we live in. In fact, viewers begin to feel that Bowman is killing HAL. The disconnection feels like a vengeful termination, after witnessing the film’s earlier events. But though HAL makes emotional statements, a real world AI would certainly be limited to having only the ability to reason, and make decisions. The cold, hard truth is that – despite what computer scientists say – we will never be able to program emotions in the way HAL’s fictional creators did because we do not understand them. Psychologists and neuroscientists are certainly trying to learn how emotions interact with cognition, but still they remain a mystery. Emotional suppression reduces memory of negative events HAL is capable of speech production and comprehension, facial recognition, lip reading – and playing chess. Its superior computational ability is boosted by uniquely human traits, too. It can interpret emotional behaviour, reason and appreciate art.By giving HAL emotions, writer Arthur C. Clarke and filmmaker Stanley Kubrick made it one of the most human-like fictional technologies ever created. In one of the most beautiful scenes in sci-fi history, it says it is “afraid” when mission commander Dr. David Bowman starts disconnecting its memory modules following a series of murderous events.HAL is programmed to deliver optimal assistance to the crew of the spaceship Discovery. It has control over the entire vessel, and staggering intelligence to aid it in its task. Yet soon after we become acquainted with HAL, we cannot help feeling that it is worried – it even claims it is experiencing fear – and that it has an ability to empathise, however small. But while there is nothing to preclude the idea that such an emotional AI could see the light of day, if such depth of feelings were to be included in real world technology, they would have to be entirely fake.A ‘perfect’ AIWhen, during the film, Bowman starts to manually override HAL’s functions, it asks him to stop, and after we witness a fascinating obliteration of HAL’s “mental” faculties, the AI seemingly tries to comfort itself by singing Daisy Bell – reportedly the first ever song produced by a computer. Citation: Opinion: AI like HAL 9000 can never exist because real emotions aren’t programmable (2018, April 9) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-04-opinion-ai-hal-real-emotions.html Explore further HAL 9000 is one of the best-known artificial intelligence characters of modern film. This superior form of sentient computer embarks on a mission to Jupiter, along with a human crew, in Stanley Kubrick’s iconic film 2001: A Space Odyssey, which is currently celebrating its 50th year since release. 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. Take our own research, for example. In a study conducted with Chinese-English bilinguals, we explored how the emotional value of words can change unconscious mental operation. When we presented our participants with positive and neutral words, such as “holiday” or “tree”, they unconsciously retrieved these word forms in Chinese. But when the words had a negative meaning, such as “murder” or “rape”, their brain blocked access to their mother tongue – without their knowledge.Reason and emotionOn the other hand, we know a lot about reasoning. We can describe how we come to rational decisions, write rules and turn these rules into process and code. Yet emotions are a mysterious evolutionary legacy. Their source is the source of everything, and not simply an attribute of the mind that can be implemented by design. To program something, you not only need to know how it works, you need to know what the objective is. Reason has objectives, emotions don’t.In an experiment conducted in 2015, we were able to put this to the test. We asked native speakers of Mandarin Chinese studying at Bangor University to play a game of chance for money. In each round, they had to take or leave a proposed bet shown on the screen – for example, a 50% chance of winning 20 points, and a 50% chance of losing 100 points. We hypothesised that giving them feedback in their mother tongue would be more emotional to them and so lead them to behave differently, compared to when they received feedback in their second language, English. Indeed, when they received positive feedback in native Chinese, they were 10% more likely to take a bet in the next round, irrespective of risk. This shows that emotions influence reasoning. Provided by The Conversation read more

Smart gadgets Ways to minimize privacy and security risks

first_imgIn this Sept. 27, 2017, file photo, an Amazon Echo device sits on a balcony outside an Amazon office as the Space Needle is reflected in windows behind it following a program announcing several new Amazon products by the company, in Seattle. Amazon says an “unlikely” string of events prompted its Echo personal assistant device to record a Portland, Ore., family’s private conversation and then send the recording to an acquaintance in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File) — LIMIT THE MIC: Disabling the microphone isn’t practical on a smartphone, but you can limit what apps have access to it. Go to the settings and turn off mic access to all but essential apps such as voice recorders or video conferencing. Netflix doesn’t really need voice access; you can simply type the name of the show you’re searching for.— ABOUT THAT CAMERA: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg famously puts a piece of tape over his laptop’s camera to prevent spying if anyone were to hack his device. Buy yourself a roll. Or use bandages. If you have a home-security camera that’s connected to the internet, turn the camera to the wall when you’re home. Just remember to turn it back before you leave, or you defeat the point of having a security camera.— BLOCK THE SIGNALS: For smartphones and other gadgets you carry with you, a “Faraday bag” that blocks electromagnetic waves can help prevent unwanted spying. The good ones will block cellular and other signals, meaning privacy-compromising information such as your location won’t leak out either. Just remember, your phone won’t get any calls while it’s in the bag—that’s the whole point. According to Amazon, the Echo’s Alexa voice assistant misheard a word as “Alexa”—a trigger to activate the device—and interpreted subsequent conversation as a “send message” request. That conversation in a home in Portland, Oregon, was then recorded and sent to an acquaintance in Seattle on the family’s contact list.Amazon blamed the situation on an “unlikely” string of events, and the company already has many privacy safeguards built into the device. Yet the incident shows that even with the best intentions, the risk is never zero. Gadgets these days come loaded with microphones and cameras. They are all vulnerable to hacking or programming errors, and there’s nothing consumers can do to eliminate the risks short of unplugging entirely.But there are ways to minimize the odds that gadgets will serve up unpleasant privacy surprises:— KILL THE MIC: Most smart speakers have a physical button to disable the microphone, so a private conversation can’t be recorded to begin with. You can hit that when you’re having sensitive conversations. The button on the Echo will turn red; other devices have similar cues. It doesn’t make sense to keep the mic disabled throughout the day, though. If the Echo can’t hear you, it won’t be able to order you more toilet paper or play smooth jazz. Citation: ‘Smart’ gadgets: Ways to minimize privacy and security risks (2018, May 25) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-05-smart-gadgets-ways-minimize-privacy.html Revelations that an Amazon Echo smart speaker inadvertently sent a family’s private conversation to an acquaintance highlights some unexpected risks of new voice-enabled technologies. Explore further How to keep your smartened-up home safe from hackers Of course, the safest approach is not to buy a new gadget in the first place. That might not be practical for smartphones these days, but do you really need a smart speaker or a television set that’s connected to the internet? (As it turns out, it’s actually difficult to buy a TV without “smart” capabilities these days, but nothing says you have to connect it at home.)From toothbrushes to slow cookers to toys, if companies can dream it up, it’s out there. Companies often release smart gadgets without thinking through the risks and ensuring their security. This makes them easy targets for malicious hackers. This is especially true with manufacturers that aren’t well known or that specialize in toys and other non-tech businesses.center_img This July 29, 2015, file photo shows Amazon’s Echo speaker, which responds to voice commands, in New York. Revelations that an Amazon Echo smart speaker inadvertently sent a private conversation to an acquaintance shows the risks that come with using new technologies. According to Amazon, the Echo’s Alexa voice assistant misheard a word as “Alexa” – a trigger word to activate the device – and interpreted subsequent conversation as a “send message” request. That conversation in a home in Portland, Oregon, was then recorded and sent to an acquaintance in Seattle on the family’s contact list. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File) In this Sept. 27, 2017, file photo, Amazon Echo Plus, center, and other Echo devices sit on display during an event announcing several new Amazon products by the company in Seattle. Amazon says an “unlikely” string of events prompted its Echo personal assistant device to record a Portland, Ore., family’s private conversation and then send the recording to an acquaintance in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File) 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. — BE INFORMED: Apple, Samsung and other tech companies have worked over the years to ensure that their products work “out of the box,” without users having to pore through lengthy manuals and operating instructions. The downside is that users are often unaware of all the things their gadgets can do, good or bad. Checking reputable online reviews, how-to guides and even instructional videos will help you get the most out of new technologies. They’ll also tell you about any known glitches and risks. © 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. In this Sept. 27, 2017, file photo, an Amazon Echo Dot is displayed during a program announcing several new Amazon products by the company, in Seattle. Amazon says an “unlikely” string of events prompted its Echo personal assistant device to record a Portland, Ore., family’s private conversation and then send the recording to an acquaintance in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, file)last_img read more