first_imgDonegal TD Thomas Pringle has withdrawn his support for embattled Presidential candidate David Norris.The Independent Deputy last night revealed he has spoken at length with his supporters about the matter.And in a brief statement, the Killybegs politician said he had now officially withdrawn his support for Senator Norris. Pringle cited the letter written by Senator Norris on behalf of his former partner Ezra Yizhak in which he said they had known eachother since 1975 and had visited eachother’s homes in Dubin and Jerusalem.Mr Yizhak was found guilty of having sex with a minor a number of years ago.In the letter he gives a character reference for Mr Yizhak .Deputy Pringle told “I have discussed the matter with my supporters in recent days. This decision was not taken lightly. “But ultimately I feel that had I been aware of this letter, then I don’t believe I would have supported Senator Norris,” he said.Senator Norris first approached Deputy Pringle when he was a member of Donegal County Council.He contacted him again when Deputy Pringle was successful in the general election and the new TD gave him his support for the Presidential race.Pringle said he now has no preferred candidate whom he has considered giving his support to.Deputy Pringle last night contacted Deputy Norris to inform him off his decision. “I wanted to tell Senator Norris myself. At this stage I am not supporting any of the current candidates,” he said.EndsPRINGLE WITHDRAWS HIS SUPPORT FOR NORRIS’ PRESIDENTIAL BID was last modified: August 2nd, 2011 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Deputy Thomas PringleSenator David Norrislast_img read more

Snailboy races up the global charts

first_imgSnailboy, created by Cape Town developer Thoopid, has become one of the world’s most popular mobile titles and one of South Africa’s most successful video games ever produced. (Image: Thoopid) • RW Liebenberg Managing partner Thoopid +27 83 380 0256 [email protected] • Durban developer’s app scores in Nokia competition • Triggerfish takes on the big boys • SA in Fifa Interactie World Cup • Learning through gaming • Mobile internet booms in SABy Shamin ChibbaA sign that the South African video gaming industry is on the up comes from a digital mollusc that scampers around a garden collecting slimeys and jumping off mossy trees, all in the quest to find his missing shell pack. His name is Snailboy, developed by Cape Town company Thoopid, and he is taking over the mobile gaming world.Released in September 2013 on Samsung’s Apps Store, iTunes and Amazon’s AppStore, Snailboy caught the attention of gamers worldwide because of its easy playability, catchy storyline and cute lead character. The game has been downloaded in China and the US more than any in other nation, and it has been listed as the best new game in 123 countries.Snailboy is a collector of precious shells, which he keeps in his shell pack. While searching for the perfect shell, he is ambushed and robbed of his pack by the Shadow Gang. The gamer has to help Snailboy retrieve it.According to Thoopid’s managing partner and co-founder, RW Liebenberg, the team wanted to create an unconventional hero. Since snails were not regarded as cute creatures, Thoopid set out to change the way we looked at them. “Snails are the underdogs and we are portraying him as the hero.”The team spent six months designing the game and, Liebenberg said, they pushed the game’s graphics, gameplay and story to the limit. Though keeping mum on the exact figure it cost to make Snailboy, Liebenberg said such a game would set his company back between R1-million and R5-million.When the game was initially released, it was a paid app. But the company recently turned it into a freemium app, meaning it is free to download but certain features of the game must be bought to be used. Liebenberg said there was a rise in the number of freemium games published and purchased towards the end of 2013. This payment method was ideal for Thoopid.Initially, the game was available on all major app stores except for Google Play. South African developers struggle to monetise their games on that particular store because they are unable to register as a Google Wallet merchant. However, Liebenberg said Thoopid overcame that problem and the game became available on Google Play in April. Stupid with a lispBefore starting Thoopid, Liebenberg and his fellow designers had been building games for 10 years, but for various clients. They established the company in 2013 with the intention of creating games specifically for mobile phones. “We always wanted to build games for ourselves and for others like us.”The company name sounded like the word “stupid” when said by someone with a lisp, he explained, adding that the tagline, “A State of Play”, was the mind-set one adopted when holding a gamepad or mobile phone and about to play a game.He said the company decided to focus on mobile gaming as it was the fastest growing gaming platform. “Mobile is taking over from console gaming worldwide. People waiting in queues or in boardrooms will play on their phones. There are more people doing that.”After the success of Snailboy, the company released Tap the Coin, a simple and addictive tapping game in which players must juggle a coin without letting it drop. It was made within an hour as part of a challenge. “It was created in our off time to freshen our minds,” said Liebenberg. “We sat down and wanted to build a game in an hour. One of the girls here said it couldn’t be done.”Snailboy and Tap the Coin were successful because they could be replayed without becoming boring. For Liebenberg, this was the mark of a successful game. “A game has to look fantastic and it has to entice people to return and keep playing.” Gaming potentialSouth African gaming’s roots lie with another anthropomorphic character, a coffee drinking, gun-slinging bunny named Toxic. Designed by computer programmer Travis Bulford, Toxic Bunny was released in 1996 as a platform game. It was well received and led to the formation of development company Celestial. In 2012, Bulford re-released Toxic Bunny in high definition.But his success did not filter through the industry. I-Imagine, a company based in Johannesburg, got a poor reaction for Chase: Hollywood Stunt Driver in 2002 and Final Armada in 2007. As a result, it retrenched its staff and went into hibernation. Even Bulford had to shut down Celestial after his strategy game, ZuluWar, failed to make an impression on gamers.Luma Arcade, the gaming arm of South African animation studio Luma, has been the most successful thus far, with titles such as Harvest, Core and Bladeslinger all coming out on mobile platforms.In a 2009 feature for Animation SA, writer Oliver Snyders said the stuttering performance of the local gaming industry was down to loss of creative and technical talents to companies abroad. In the same article, developer Danny Day said the exodus was tied to poor internet infrastructure, little online payment support and the lack of understanding of the games industry by businesses and other support circles.However, Liebenberg said that today programming and design talent was available in South Africa and was being fed to the gaming industry by tertiary institutions. “We’ve got the tools and the resources. Time and creativity are the only limits,” said Liebenberg.South African video game development might not be as mature as its Japanese and American counterparts, but Liebenberg said it was increasingly becoming a place where games were being built. There were a number of independent development companies in South Africa and a significant number of international developers used South African resources to create games.last_img read more

Budget 2017 infographic: Where does the money come from? How will it be spent?

first_imgThe lion’s share of South Africa’s 2017 Budget will be spent on basic education – some R243-billion, or around 15.5% of total spending. But where does the money come from? And what are the government’s other spending priorities? Our handy infographic explains.The main sources of money the government spends are taxes and levies.Tough economic conditions have reduced the amount of taxes that will be collected in 2017/18.In order to sustain its spending priorities, the government has proposed raising additional tax revenue mainly from personal income tax and dividend withholding tax. As a result, some, R1.3-trillion is expected to be collected in 2017/18.Here’s a quick overview of where the money comes from, and how it will be spent.Click the image to enlarge.Words: Mary AlexanderDesign: Jae BritsWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa materiallast_img read more

2016 Ohio FFA Convention final session

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Ohio FFA President Matthew Klopfenstein gave an inspirational retiring address in the final session of the 2016 Ohio FFA Convention. In addition, new officers were announced and 837 State Degrees were presented. Ohio FFA President Matthew Klopfensteinlast_img

Archbold Equipment Co. rebrands and is now Redline Equipment

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Archbold Equipment has rebranded and is now Redline Equipment. The company has a new name, new logo and tagline: any season, any reason, any time.“We’re the same people, at the same locations, with the same ownership, but with a new vision,” Zach Hetterick Redline Equipment CEO said. “We have been working since the beginning of the year to define who we are, so we stay relevant to our customer base and to ensure our team is working in the same direction.”For more than 20 years the board of the directors have discussed changing the name, but could not agree upon one. Having the name of the company with several locations being the same as the name of a town created difficulty and confusion.“The rebrand is part of our long term strategic plan,” Hetterick said. “We enlisted the help of a third party who worked to capture the voice of the customer.”The information captured was used to create brand concepts. Each location has a rebranding lead and those staff members provided input into the brand to go with, made the apparel choices, helped shape the new brand, and are involved in implementing it at their location.“The feedback we captured from customers is being utilized in all aspects of our business and will have an impact far beyond our rebranding,” Hetterick said.As part of the new vision for the company, staff are now operating under a new mission and core values. Learn more at Equipment has seven agricultural store locations in the Tri-State area: Topeka, IN; Adrian, MI; and four Ohio locations in Archbold, Bellevue, Bowling Green, Ottawa, and Sherwood.last_img read more

Pressure-Treated Sill Plates and the Building Code

first_imgCode requirements for wood-concrete contact treat the symptoms of rot, not the cause Last week we talked about moisture meters, and I asked readers why the wood in the picture was wet. As it turns out, that photo was taken in the same house on the same day as the two pictures at right. Why is one bottom plate sitting on concrete “dry,” and the other one “wet?” I admit that this week’s top photo was taken in the basement and last week’s and the bottom photo were taken in the crawl space, but the location is not the cause of the different moisture readings. The reason is simple: sill sealer. The light blue sill sealer installed between the bottom plate and concrete (most likely for air sealing) in the top photo is closed-cell foam. It’s meant to be an air-sealing gasket, but it also is working as a capillary break because it keeps water in the concrete from wicking up into the wood. Both wood and concrete wick water well because they are porous materials. A “red light” moisture meter reading because of something this building assembly lacks.The real problem expressed in these photos: Building codes require wood that comes in contact with concrete to be pressure treated, rather than just saying that wood should not come in to direct contact with concrete. While the pressure-treated bottom plate won’t rot, it is still porous and can’t keep water from wicking through it and up into the end grain of the studs. In last week’s photo, we saw the moisture content at the bottom of the stud (not pressure treated) was above 17%. While we may not care if pressure-treated wood has high moisture content (it won’t rot), we certainly do care about the studs connected to the sill (they can). Pressure-treated bottom plates deal with the symptoms of the problem when a capillary break between wood and concrete deals with the cause. No direct contact, no need for pressure-treated bottom plates. A cautionary note about moisture meters and pressure-treated wood. Moisture meters use the electrical activity of the water in the wood to calculate moisture content. The salts used to treat lumber have a significant effect on this electrical activity; moisture readings for pressure-treated wood tend to run high, so take actual readings with a grain of salt (pardon the pun). The relative difference between the two readings in these two photos — both in pressure treated wood — is still useful. For more information on this effect, see “Effects of Wood Preservatives on Electric Moisture-Meter Readings” from the Forest Products Laboratory.last_img read more

Fire breaks out in Army barrack in Pulwama

first_imgA fire broke out in an Army barrack in Pulwama district of Jammu and Kashmir on Monday, police said. There were no reports of loss of life. The fire broke out in the barrack in Khrew area of the South Kashmir district and fire tenders were rushed to the spot to douse the flames, a police official said. The extent of damage was not yet known, the official said, adding the cause of the fire is being ascertained.last_img

This is OnePlus 7 Pro: Full specifications leak again ahead of May 14 launch

first_imgThe OnePlus 7 Pro is one of the highly-anticipated smartphones for 2019, as is evident from the continuous flurry of leaks. While OnePlus will officially launch the OnePlus 7 series on May 14 globally in India, the leaks have given us information about many aspects of the smartphone – from the display to cameras and everything else. To add to the collection, another leak has come up throwing out all possible information about the OnePlus 7 Pro, re-assuring most of the previous ones.So far, we know that the OnePlus 7 Pro is an all-screen phone with a pop-up camera, a smooth 90Hz display, the top-of-the-line specifications and a robust set of cameras. The new leaked specification sheet also suggests similar specifications, albeit with slight variations.OnePlus CEO Pete Lau has been talking a great deal about the display on the OnePlus 7 Pro lately and the leaked sheet throws light on that. The handset will sport a 6.67-inch Fluid AMOLED display that renders pictures at a resolution of 3120 x 1440 pixels. The panel will have a pixel density of 516 PPI and will have a refresh rate of 90Hz. Similar to the older OnePlus 6T, it will also have an in-display fingerprint scanner.OnePlus has always been using flagship-grade chipsets and the OnePlus 7 Pro will do that as well. The phone will be powered by the Snapdragon 855 chipset and will be accompanied by a choice of 6GB, 8GB or 12GB RAM, and an option of choosing between 128GB and 256GB onboard storage. The OnePlus 7 Pro will use a faster UFS 3.0 storage, which OnePlus has proudly confirmed lately. As expected, the OnePlus 7 Pro will run on Android 9 Pie with the latest version of Oxygen OS.advertisement With the OnePlus 7 Pro, the company is gunning for a better camera experience and the leaked sheet confirms once again how they are going to do it. We have known for a while the OnePlus 7 Pro will get a triple rear camera setup. The primary camera will have a 48-megapixel Sony IMX586 sensor with F1.6 aperture lens and will be assisted by OIS. The secondary camera will be a 16-megapixel wide-angle camera with a 117 degrees field of view. The third unit is an 8-megapixel telephoto camera with 3x optical zoom.The setup will be assisted by PDAF, Laser Autofocus, Continuous Autofocus and a Dual LED flash. The camera will be able to shoot 4K videos at 60 fps and 480 fps slow motion videos at 720p. For the front, there’s a 16-megapixel camera with the Sony IMX471 sensor with support for EIS. The camera will be placed on a pop-up module.What’s new on the OnePlus 7 Pro is the presence of a dual stereo speaker setup. Along with that, there will be a 4000mAh battery that will come with support for 30W Warp Charge.With only a few days to go into the launch, it is expected that the OnePlus 7 Pro will be quite similar to the picture that the leaks have painted in our minds so far. Considering the leaked prices, OnePlus will be targeting Samsung and Apple’s flagship offerings with the OnePlus 7 Pro while having the benefits of superior on-paper specifications. The OnePlus 7 Pro will be launched on May 14 in Bengaluru alongside the OnePlus 7.ALSO READ | OnePlus 7 Pro base variant with 6GB RAM price leaked, will only come in single colourALSO READ | OnePlus asking users to guess specs of OnePlus 7 Pro and win the phone, here’s how to participateALSO READ | OnePlus 7 and OnePlus 7 Pro: Fluid HDR+ screen, fast UFS3 storage, 3 cameras and everything you must knowlast_img read more