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first_imgThe concept of digital humanities is about bringing as much life to the study of human culture as there is culture of humanity itself. Through sound, images, video, and the immense body of data collected every day describing the footprint of life, researchers, scholars, and students are exploring unconventional ways to tell the story of humankind.More than 80 people gathered at the Gutman Library on Saturday to participate in Harvard’s first THATCamp, a free-form “unconvention” designed to inspire fresh conversation and ideas about the developing tide of digital humanities.“This is a moment for Harvard to say that the digital humanities are important,” said Odile Harter, an organizer of the event and a research librarian. “I’m hoping that people will leave having made some progress, having been inspired, supported, encouraged, and helped in some way toward whatever they are working on.”THATCamp is an acronym for “The Humanities and Technology Camp.” The event was characterized more by what it was not than by what it was. It was not a conference, symposium, or convention with a full complement of lectures, papers, and PowerPoint presentations. It was a gathering where everyone was a participant in spontaneous discussion.Participants voted on what they wanted to discuss and then gathered to talk. When the day was done, the hope was that participants would leave inspired, more educated, and with an expanded network of people to help advance their projects.THATCamps have taken place in the Boston area, across the country, and around the world. The concept was developed in 2008 at the Center for History and New Media at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., to bring humanities professionals and technologists together to jump-start the use of digital media and computing in the research and teaching of humanities.Martin Schreiner, an organizer of the local camp and the head of the Harvard Libraries maps, media, data, and government information department, said the dynamic of humanities research is steadily changing. New technology and the Internet are creating ways to conduct and present research for students and scholars alike.????From my perspective, the way people do research now is with databases that can be searched across the continent,” he said. “The old idea of sitting in a carrel and going into the library stacks — you can’t work that way anymore because people have to work together. Everything is very interdisciplinary.”More than 80 people gathered at the Gutman Library on Saturday to participate in Harvard’s first THATCamp, a free-form “unconvention” designed to inspire fresh conversation and ideas about the developing tide of digital humanities.P.J. Neal is entering the final year of his graduate work at the Harvard Extension School. His thesis deals with the relationship between Harvard and the military during World War II. He came to THATCamp looking for ideas about how to present his research using digital media.“We have such great materials in the Harvard Libraries, such great materials in the Harvard Crimson, and I’d like to create an online tool that makes those materials come alive,” he said. “I understand technology, I’m comfortable with it, and I’m comfortable with partnering with people who know how to do it.”Kelly Fitzpatrick, a graduate student at Simmons College, was introduced to digital humanities while working on her undergraduate thesis at Hampshire College. She created a website of digitized photos and print media from World War I. She then used an interface to deconstruct and analyze the material around the theme of her research.“In the past two years, I feel that digital humanities has really taken off as a thing that people are recognizing as unique,” Fitzpatrick said.There were a dozen sessions Saturday that included discussions about building collaborations, introducing digital media to students and educators, improving accessibility and usability of digital archives, the use of digital media in academic storytelling, and the use of maps and geographic data.But a question underlying many of the sessions was the acceptability of digital humanities as scholarly work.“We have come a long way in developing our own tools and digitalizing information,” said Douglas Seefeldt, a fellow at the Charles Warren Center for Studies in American History. “But we have a long way to go to find platforms that are recognized as peer-reviewed, scholarly communications platforms such as journals and books.”THATCamp at Harvard was sponsored by Research Computing for the Arts and Humanities, the Harvard College Library, the Harvard Graduate School of Education, the Harvard Library, and the Northeast Regional Computing Group, and organized by the Digital Futures Consortium at Harvard.last_img read more

first_imgOct 6, 2006 (CIDRAP News) – Many more toddlers received influenza shots in the first flu season after federal health officials began recommending that step 2 years ago, but they remained a minority, according to a report issued yesterday.In 2004 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) formally recommended flu shots for 6- to 23-month-old children; previously the agency had only “encouraged” vaccination in this age-group. New survey results indicate that 33.4% of those children received at least one dose of flu vaccine for the 2004-05 season, compared with 17.5% the previous season, the CDC said.Also yesterday, the CDC reported that the self-reported flu immunization rate among people aged 65 and older dropped from 67.6% in 2004 to 63.3% in 2005, probably reflecting the vaccine shortage in the 2004-05 flu season. Both immunization reports were published in today’s issue of Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.The findings about toddler immunizations come from the 2005 National Immunization Survey (NIS), an ongoing telephone survey of households, coupled with a mail survey of vaccination providers.The survey used two measures of vaccination coverage for the 2004-05 season: (1) at least one dose between September and December 2004, and (2) full vaccination, defined as two doses between September and December for children never vaccinated before, or at least one dose in that period for children vaccinated previously.Based on household responses and the availability of provider vaccination data, 12,056 children were included in the survey. Of these, 33.4% had received at least one dose of flu vaccine, but only 17.8% were considered fully vaccinated, the CDC reports. Those findings compare with estimates of 17.5% for at least one dose and 8.4% for full vaccination in the 2003-04 season.Immunization rates for toddlers varied widely by location, with single-dose coverage ranging from 9.1% in Clark County, Nev., to 59.3% in Massachusetts, the CDC says.The report notes that the United States had a shortage of flu vaccine in 2004-05 because one manufacturer (Chiron) couldn’t deliver the doses it had planned to. However, the shortage didn’t directly affect the supply for toddlers, because Chiron’s vaccine was not licensed for children under 4 years old.A previous CDC survey, from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), yielded a higher estimate of flu immunization among toddlers in 2004-05: 48.4%. Several factors may explain the difference, the article says.The BRFSS figures are based on reports from parents and are not confirmed by healthcare providers, which might result in overestimates, the CDC says. In addition, the BRFSS used a different definition of the 6- to 23-month-old age-group and a slightly longer vaccination period.Flu shots in elderly sagged in 2005The CDC report of a drop in flu immunization among older people in 2005 came from BRFSS surveys. In the 2004 and 2005 surveys, people were asked whether they had had a flu shot in the preceding 12 months. Survey respondents who were 65 or older numbered 68,514 in 2004 and 87,351 in 2005.In 2005, 63.3% of the elderly respondents said they’d had a flu shot, compared with 67.6% in 2004. The decline in coverage was statistically significant in 16 states, and it exceeded 10% in 13 of those states, the CDC reports.State immunization rates for the elderly varied widely in both years; in 2005 they ranged from 35.3% in Puerto Rico to 78.8% in Minnesota, with a median of 65.5%. Among the states, the median drop in coverage was 5.1%.To assess vaccination coverage in the 2003-04 and 2004-05 flu seasons, the CDC did a separate analysis of the findings from people interviewed in the first 6 months of each of the 2 years. Most people questioned during those periods were reporting on vaccinations received between the preceding September and December, the article says.This analysis revealed a steeper decline in flu immunization than was found in the full-year analysis. In the first half of 2005, 64% of respondents said they had been immunized, down from 73.8% in the first half of 2004. Coverage declined in all but two states and territories; the decreases ranged from 3.2% to 23.7%, with a median of 12.0%. The decline was significant in 44 states and greater than 10% in nine of them.The CDC says the findings suggest that elderly people were affected by the vaccine shortage in 2004-05. About 61 million doses were produced for that season, compared with 87 million the previous season and 95 million in 2002-03, the report says.In response to the supply problems of recent years, the article says the CDC is working with manufacturers and distributors to improve a vaccine-supply tracking system that was first devised in the 2004-05 season.Unlike flu immunizations, pneumococcal vaccination coverage in the elderly was stable over the 2 years. In 2005, 63.7% of respondents reported ever having received pneumococcal vaccine, compared with 63.4% in 2004.  Coverage in 2005 ranged from 28.3% in Puerto Rico to 71.7% in North Dakota, with a median of 65.7%.The government has set goals of increasing flu and pneumococcal vaccination coverage among the elderly to 90% by 2010.CDC. Childhood influenza vaccination coverage—United States, 2004-05 influenza season. MMWR 2006 Oct 6;55(39):1061-5 [Full text]CDC. Influenza and pneumococcal vaccination coverage among persons aged >65 years—United States, 2004-2005.  MMWR 2006 Oct 6;55(39):1065-8 [Full text]last_img read more

first_imgStill coming out for their piece of the cake – West Coast Berbice (District 5)WHEN West Coast Berbice (District 5) come out at the National Schools’ Cycling, Swimming and Track & Field Championships (Nationals), which will begin next week at varying locations, they know that they will be at a disadvantage, given the team’s small size. However, the District still look to leave their mark.Though the District has a full capacity track and field team, like many of the other 14 Districts that will be competing at the Championships, the Berbice team are struggling with their swimming and cycling teams, and so realistically concede that going after the overall title of the multi-sport event just isn’t feasible.But that’s not to say that West Coast Berbice by any means do not have a goal, nor will they be looking to leave Nationals empty-handed.“We know that we cannot eat the whole cake so we are going there to at least get part of that cake. We’re not looking at the overall Championships, we’re going there to bring back some medals and show them what we can do,” declared the District head, Michelle Archibald.“For me we are not looking at positions in terms of winning the Championships because we have weaknesses; we are not going with a full team. But our eyes are on records, and bringing back some medals. That is our aim, my athletes know that.”After also facing a severely limited team last year, the Region Five team finished thirteenth overall, after the competition was won by the Upper Demerara/Kwakwani (District 10).Archibald knows that the District cannot stand a chance against powerhouses like Upper Demerara/Kwakwani (District 10) and North Georgetown (District 11), the two most successful Districts at the Championships, known to always be at full capacity.There are several longstanding woes that have plagued the Berbice District over the years, and while they have made improvements in the track and field division, the struggle continues in the other areas.The challenges range from lack of facilities to lack of equipment.“Up here in Region Five the focus is more on track and field than on cycling or swimming. Where swimming is concerned there is no pool that is close. For cycling we don’t have much persons equipped with their own cycles. We also won’t be participating in the high jump, because we lack that equipment,” Archibald explained.There are just 8 swimmers and 6 cyclists, while on the more optimistic side, they have a team of 12 participants for the teachers’ competition, but even there they have challenges.She further described that over the years a few efforts have been made by the Regional Democratic Council to address some of the team’s issues, but the remedies did not pan out well.“Where the cycling is concerned our region in previous years purchased two cycles; but after the Nationals the cycles were back at the region, and when we were ready to use them again, we had to service them and so after a time they deteriorated.“So they said that it’s a personal sport and the athletes, if they are interested, have to get their own cycles. But just a few children can afford a racing bike,” Archibald noted.However, in the case of procuring other equipment, like those for the high jump, Archibald says she has been appealing to the RDC, who promised to address the issue.“The Region is the one that the children are going to represent and if we are going to represent you then you have to ensure we have these things.“Every year when we come back to the region we write a report and do our recommendations and say to them: look this is where we fall short, this is what we would like you to do for us.“But then it just go under the carpet, and when it’s Nationals again it comes back to the same old story again,” she pointed out.last_img read more

first_img German Länder eye gambling supervisory unit opportunities January 21, 2020 StumbleUpon Submit EC investigates Bundesland casino tax regimes December 12, 2019 Share German news sources have this morning reported that the executives of the 16 autonomous Länder (states) have ‘agreed in principle’ to allow for federal online casino and poker provisions.The Bundesrat press agency has reportedly confirmed that Länder legislators will allow for concessions on online casino and poker licensing, amending existing conditions of the ‘Fourth Interstate Treaty on Gambling’.Since 2012, the German marketplace has been in a state of flux with regards to legislating online casino operators, as the executive of Schleswig-Holstein chose not to conform with the terms of the ‘First Interstate Treaty’ by developing an independent framework for online gambling.Despite Treaty reforms, the EU has continually rejected Germany’s disjointed regulatory framework, underlining that German online gambling maintains restrictive business conditions as Schleswig-Holstein chose to limit operator licensing – deemed an infringement upon foreign competition.Online casino legislation had been earmarked as a point of conflict between Länder executives who hold a 12-16 month window in which to settle on the final terms of ‘Fourth Interstate Treaty, set to be implemented from 30 June 2021.New Bundesrat developments see the 16 Länder approve of new amendments allowing for individual states to maintain their lottery rights, and further lifting the ‘online prohibition’ of casino, poker and slot games.The Bundesrat is yet to disclose official online casino requirements but underlines that all Länder will commit to protecting minors and securing safeguards against gambling addiction.Despite reaching consensus on regulating online casino, it appears that the Länder will maintain a €1,000 deposit limit across online casino and poker verticals – a controversial mechanism which has been adopted for sports betting, alongside a set of unclear restrictions on in-play wagering.The records of German consumer wagering will be maintained by a ‘new supervisory authority’ charged with collecting ‘lock files’ from licensed operators detailing online gambling engagements.Yesterday, the legislator of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) confirmed to regional news sources that it had drafted documents outlining its plans to become the super-surveillance’ component of the German gambling marketplace.The NRW executive has bid to develop a hi-tech monitoring unit which will be resourced by 300 staff, with further provisions attached to bolstering server and data processing capacities. Related Articles Share Bayern Munich executive Jörg Wacker criticises Interstate Treaty’s ‘false protections’ February 17, 2020last_img read more