For decades, evolutionists have used the vertebrate retina as an example of poor design (dysteleology). They have mocked how any designer could have been so unintelligent as to get the wiring backwards – with the photoreceptors behind a jumble of light-scattering cells. Creationists have countered that despite the arrangement, it works well.1 Now, they may have a new debating advantage. German scientists believe they have found a sophisticated network of high-performance optical fibers that funnels light into the photoreceptors without any loss. The Register (UK) summarized the finding by German scientists at Leipzig University. They found a layer of cells that act like a second lens inside the eye, channeling the light right through the opaque layer and putting it right where it is needed. Their words almost glow:They have demonstrated that light is collected and funnelled through long cells called M�ller cells. These work almost exactly like a fibre optic plate: a “zero-length window” that optical engineers can use to transmit an image without using a lens…. “Everyone thinks lasers are perfectly parallel, but this is not so,” [Andreas] Reichenbach continues. “They do diverge. The M�ller cells behave as a lens, and collect all the light without any loss, just like an optical plate.” But normal optical plates have simple bundles of optical fibres that collect and transmit the light. The researchers have discovered that the vertebrate eye has gone one step further and created a funnel shaped cell that allows more light to be collected at the surface of the eye…. “Nature is so clever,” Reichenbach says. “This means there is enough room in the eye for all the neurons and synapses and so on, but still the M�ller cells can capture and transmit as much light as possible.”Optical engineers might learn a lesson from this design, the article ends. Even the AAAS news site Science Now was impressed. In a picture story underScience Shots called “Optical Solution,” (May 2), the caption said,For an organ that delivers such crystal-clear images, the eye is curiously designed. Its light-sensing rods and cones lie hidden behind a blanket of nerve cells that carry visual information to the brain. So what prevents those neurons from obscuring our vision? The answer may be surprisingly high-tech. The entire retina is held together by a network of elongated M�ller cells, and these act like optic fibers, funneling light straight through the neural veil to the rods and cones, according to a study published online the week of 30 April in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Not a bad trick for a camera designed 500 million years ago.Though a creationist may flinch at that last sentence, no one can fail to notice the D word design – and the absence of evolution language in both articles. Does this indicate a backpedaling of arguments about bad design in the eye? It appears the design was more clever all along than anyone imagined.Update 05/07/2007: The paper in PNAS2 appeared on May 7. The 10 German authors describe in exquisite detail the optical properties of the Muller cells, and how they measured them. They said that each cone cell (color photodetector) has one Muller cell guiding the light to it, while several rods (black and white photodetectors) can use one optical fiber. The entire front surface of the retina is effectively covered by the cone-shaped entrances of the optical fibers, which guide the light directly to the photoreceptors, bypassing the other cells which would otherwise scatter the light. Each Muller cell has a variable index of refraction tuned to the light to maintain the optimum wave-guiding properties and reduce loss by reflection. The authors say in the final discussion, “the increasing refractive index together with their funnel shape at nearly constant lightguiding capability… make them ingeniously designed light collectors.” There is no mention of evolution in the paper.1For example rebuttals, see creationist articles on CSI by Peter Gurney and Carl Wieland, and ID responses on ARN by George Ayoub and Michael Denton. See also CEH entries from 05/09/2002 (“Best of all possible optics?”), 05/27/2003 and 05/22/2003. Consider also the sharpness of the eagle eye, or the eyes of a diving cormorant, 05/24/2004.2Franze et al., “M�ller cells are living optical fibers in the vertebrate retina,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, 10.1073/pnas.0611180104, published online before print May 7, 2007.The dysteleology argument against the vertebrate retina is now dead. If you ever hear it raised again, point the evolutionist to this paper. Who could have imagined that advanced waveguide technology was built into the vertebrate eye? The scientists used guinea pig eyes in their research. Are we supposed to believe that guinea pigs and even smaller vertebrates are the leading optical designers in the world? Come on. No more do we need to hear the mocking of Darwinists like Jared Diamond (see non-sequitur in the Baloney Detector). Darwinism is out for the count on this old argument. The vertebrate eye is superbly designed all the way down. Creationists don’t need judges to decide in favor of their position. They just ask for better observations of the facts that are there for the seeing. Read this, you mockers.(Visited 11 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0
Hawaiian Airlines has unveiled a new cabin for the trans-oceanic Airbus A321neo aircraft that promises to transform its operations.Hawaiian is set to take delivery of 18 of the 4,000-nautical mile range jets by 2020, with the first neo slated for delivery later this year.The three-cabin neos— featuring 16 Premium, 45 Extra Comfort and 128 economy class seats from B/E Aerospace —and will be powered by new fuel-efficient twin Pratt & Whitney PurePower 1133G-JM engines.The longer-range narrowbodies will ply the skies between the islands and the US West Coast.That frees up more of the airline’s widebody A330-200s for high-capacity, deep continental U.S. duties and international flying.Narrowbody Boeing 717-200s will continue to link Honolulu with Hawaiian’s ‘neighbor-island’ markets.Hawaiian’s been on a product improvement roll of late, adding new amenities and aircraft at a relatively rapid rate.UK-based JPA Design is crafting the neo’s interior with an “Earth, Sea and Sky” motif.JPA executive Tim Manson says the cabin “draws inspiration from Hawaii’s rich past and contemporary present. Symbolism from Hawaii’s story is woven throughout the cabin interiors.”Less poetically, all three of the A321neos’ cabins are fitted with high-power USB outlets. Premium and Extra Comfort passengers have access to an additional AC power outlet.The premium cabin will be fitted with leather recliners while the 45 Extra Comfort seats will offer an extra five inches of leg room, priority boarding and other perks.New for Hawaiian passengers will be wireless streaming inflight entertainment available on personal devices after an application has been downloaded before boarding the aircraft.Passengers will be able to enjoy a wide selection of complimentary movies, TV shows, and Hawaii content available exclusively through the airline’s Hawaiian Skies channel.Holders for personal hand-held devices and tablets will be integrated into the tray tables of the premium cabin, as well as the first row of Extra Comfort, and built into the backrest of all other seats in the aircraft.Lots of Hawaii-bound flyers would rather forget about business for a while.That’s why new pivoting overhead bins come in handy, the better to stow vacation gear.
Large Events Rethink Safety and Emergency Proto… If you’ve been keeping up with ecommerce trends, you might have heard that over the last few years, more and more people are doing their shopping online. In 2018, 51% of UK consumers said they prefer shopping online – this is the prevailing global trend. As a business, it is an excellent opportunity and a great time to take your business online. You’ll be missing out if your products are not available for purchase online.Setting a shop online can be expensive and complicated. One of the easiest and cheapest ways to set up shop on the internet. What would be really good for you and your business? What are the things you should be aware of with an eCommerce business? Are there other options for you? The most popular WordPress plugins of all time — used to power millions of ecommerce websites.A Brief HistoryThe WooCommerce plugin started it’s life as a product of a company called WooThemes. After unsuccessfully trying to work with Jigoshop (another ecommerce offering), WooThemes hired the main developers of Jigoshop (Mike Jolley and James Konster) and forked (created a new branch of the code) to develop their eCommerce platform, which eventually became WooCommerce.This is the beauty and nature of open-source software, where somebody can come along and develop an enhanced version of the open-sourced code (as long as they also open-source that code).WooCommerce was officially released on September 27, 2011.This new product from WooThemes become extremely popular and successful and hit 1M downloads in 2013, 4M in 2014 and 7M downloads in 2015. Such was the growth explosion of this product that Automattic, the company behind WordPress.com (the commercial arm of WordPress) acquired WooThemes in 2015.Today, WooCommerce remains one of the most prominent players in the eCommerce industry, with 62M downloads, 22% of the top 1M websites running on WooCommerce according to BuiltWith and 28% of all online stores according to WooCommerce.com.Source: BuiltWithWhat can WooCommerce do?WooCommerce allows you to create an online shop. Although this plugin’s initial aim was to create an online shop, today it is much more than that. Let’s look into a few of the online revenue streams which one can build with it. David Attard AI: How it’s Impacting Surveillance Data Storage Create an online store for your physical goods. Tags:#ecommerce#Ecommerce business ideas David has spent most of his adult and professional life around tech, design and digital technologies. His wife says he probably spends too much time geeking out on stuff most other people would find “nerdy”. Related Posts Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement Best Data Visualization Tools for 2020 Reviewed WooCommerce is mostly known for its ability to create an online shop.Just like with WordPress with which it integrates seamlessly, the strength of the product comes from the fact that it is so easy to customize it and create a shop which is just right for your specific needs.Selling physical products online, to both a local, but more so to an international market requires significant complexity. Setting up shipping is fairly easy — where you set shipping zones, such that shipping costs are calculated automatically at the checkout stage. You may decide that local areas can pick up the items themselves at your physical location and then ZIP codes beyond that would be calculated at specific rates which you might have already determined with your shipping provider.Even more complicated than shipping is taxes.With various US states and European countries having differing rates of taxes, testing, and setting this up yourself to conform with all legislative requirements could become quite a nightmare. The beauty of many ecommerce sites is that these complexities are handled entirely and automatically by the plugin with little to no input required. You only need to enter the country or state where the business is running from, and everything else is handled automatically.Receiving online payments is also something which used to be quite a complicated task.Get access to integration of several payments gateways such as Stripe, or direct integration with Paypal. Arranging to get fees, even accepting payments by Credit Cards, is a breeze both for you as a vendor and for your customers.By integrating with a payment gateway, your company does not need to maintain any financial data of your customers, because this function is “outsourced” to the payment gateway. Not having to keep business data (financial) and records significantly reduce your own risk and that of your clients. You’ll also reduce expenses required to meet the rigorous standards required to be able to manage and store customer financial data such as credit card details.As with most mature WordPress plugins, it might take some time to get used to all of the settings and configurations available, but you’ll find plenty of web designers and agencies who specialize in setting up your ecommerce site. But what if you don’t have any physical products to sell?2. Selling of digital/downloadable products.In this day and age, shops which sell digital products, or stuff which you download are as popular as stores which sell physical goods. Whatever digital merchandise you’re pushing, most especially if this is on a pay to download basis — is very easy to set up and its function can be built right into the product. Essentially, you need to set up a Downloadable products section and then upload the product as part of the creation of a product.If you are only selling digital information — you can upload the files, mark the product as “Virtual” such that no shipping costs are calculated on it. Then, you set the product or service as “Downloadable,” upload the appropriate files, and you’re ready to start selling.3. Setting up a services-based shop.While selling products is the most obvious scenario for setting up shop, this is not the only type of business. Companies which provide services can also set up an eCommerce based shop — though they will need to make use of particular extensions like booking and appointment extensions. You will likely want to take appointments online as well.As a business which sells services, setting up a shop online can help your business in multiple ways:Makes it easier for your clients to book your services at their leisure.Reduces costs associated with making appointments.There are plenty of plugins, which can enable the taking of bookings and appointments online, with the number of features and functions provided varying accordingly. There are plenty of other sites that help book these types of services from different vendors.4. Setting up a membership site.Such information as digital courses, membership courses, eLearning organizations can all make use of eCommerce sites as the driving force of their business.5. Setting up a subscription-based business.The final business setup which we will discuss which can be enabled using an eCommerce site as a subscriptions-based business. Subscriptions are the preferred one of doing a business today. There are benefits both for the user because the price per month is typically lower than buying a lifetime license. This kind of business also places the onus on the supplier of the product or service, to maintain the same level of service as when the client first purchased a product.For the vendor, the growth in revenue is typically faster, and the value of the company providing the service per se is much higher than companies which sell one-off products.Source: Wall Street JournalYou also need to do “less” marketing, the focus shifts to keeping your existing customers rather than attracting new customers, making sure you keep your customers for as long as possible (increasing what is known as the lifetime value of a customer). There are two primary kinds of business which can use subscriptions. The first is content-based companies, such as newspapers, magazines, and other content-intensive providers. The second is a subscription box. These are all the rage these days.Essentially, this is a concept, where a client pays a fixed price per month or another specific period, and they get a “box” of their favorite (physical) products delivered to their own home. Subscription boxes are stable in the beauty niche, but all sorts of niches can work this business model, from foods, coffees and teas, wines and other beverages, notebooks, pets, sweets, shaving blades, socks and whatever else can be delivered in a relatively small box.In reality, most physical product suppliers can create a subscription box, once they iron out the initial logistics of delivering on time and at relatively low cost. Actually, anybody can create a subscription box business, once you sort out the supply and shipping logistics.6. Other business models.While we’ve mentioned several niches in which eCommerce can operate in, there are various others which we have not mentioned. Think dropshipping, selling on Amazon, eBay, and Facebook, Fulfillment by Amazon, affiliate websites, and plenty of other options.PricesWe mentioned quite a few WooCommerce extensions which one can use such as Bookings, Memberships, and Subscriptions which are all available through the official Marketplace.Quite a few extensions are available for free, or between roughly $50 to $300, which we believe is a low price to pay for setting up shop and driving your business forward. There are plenty of others available from independent vendors. Of course, if you don’t have the know-how to set up a WooCommerce or eCommerce shop yourself, you’ll probably want to hire a developer or designer to set this up for you. Besides the setup of the actual product, one needs to factor in the price of hosting your ecommerce shop online; typically one would opt for a VPS, to ensure the shop has sufficient resources to operate as necessary.AlternativesShopifyOne of the biggest competitors when it comes to setting up an ecommerce website is Shopify, and you’ll find plenty of articles comparing WooCommerce vs Shopify, the two behemoths of ecommerce. Shopify is a SaaS (software as a service) so the concept is slightly different from that of WooCommerce, because hosting is part of the actual service, and adding or customizing means enabling or disabling particular “apps.”In general, the setup of Shopify is probably more straightforward, but one needs to stay within the “shell” of Shopify, which means that the level of customization is more limited than what would be available with WooCommerce. The pricing of Shopify is a monthly subscription which increases depending on the needs of the specific business. Shopify is not open-source.MagentoThis is another option which is available for setting up online shops, though this is typically used for enterprise-level shops, requiring extensive customization options which cannot be handled by some eCommerce sites. Magento also has an open source edition which can be downloaded and used.Wrapping UpAs you can see, many eCommerce sites are very flexible pieces of software which can be used to power plenty of types of businesses and ecommerce shops. Besides what we have mentioned above, both WooCommerce and WordPress have a robust community of support, developers, and extensions, a whole industry to help you achieve the results you require for your business.
Senior leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) are hopeful that the political logjam in the State would end soon, following a meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar in Delhi on Wednesday. Mr. Pawar met the Prime Minister in Parliament on Wednesday to discuss the looming agrarian crisis in Maharashtra. However, senior BJP leaders said the meeting did involve talks on the political situation in Maharashtra. They said it has reignited hope that the party is not yet out of contention for government formation, even as talks between the Shiv Sena, NCP and the Congress appear to be heading towards some conclusion. “We are confident of forming the government. Maharashtra will only get a BJP-led government in future,” Ashish Shelar, senior party leader and member of the party’s core committee, said. The meeting between the two leaders set off speculation in political circles that the BJP and NCP were trying to strike a deal to form a government.But BJP leaders denied any back channel talks were on with the NCP. “This is mere speculation. When we want to talk with a party, we will not be clandestine about it,” a senior BJP leader and former State minister said. The BJP leadership also denied rumours that the two parties have struck a deal promising three cabinet berths to the NCP in exchange of support for government formation. “There is also talk that the Prime Minister has promised Mr. Pawar the post of the next President and has agreed on a 50:50 formula, with the BJP and NCP sharing the post of the chief minister. These are unverified reports,” the BJP leader said. Rumours of the BJP and NCP opening back channels for talks are not new. Previously, speculations were rife that a prominent industrialist from Mumbai was trying to broker a deal between the two. But these reports were quickly dismissed by leaders of both parties.
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KNOXVILLE, TN – OCTOBER 4: Dante Fowler Jr. #6 of the Florida Gators gestures toward fans in the closing seconds of the game against the Tennessee Volunteers at Neyland Stadium on October 4, 2014 in Knoxville, Tennessee. Florida defeated Tennessee 10-9. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)Dante Fowler’s time as a Florida football player is over, as the junior defensive lineman is headed to the NFL. Fowler, a potential first-round pick in the 2015 NFL Draft, won’t be leaving Florida without saying “thank you” to all the fans who supported him during his time in Gainesville, Fla. The 6-foot-3, 261-pound defensive end took out an ad in Friday’s Gainesville Sun expressing gratitude to all of Gator Nation. Very cool from @TheDanteFowler6, thanking the #GatorNation with an ad in today’s @GainesvilleSun @Gator_sports pic.twitter.com/G3RwAjHPtB— GatorZone Football (@GatorZoneFB) January 30, 2015Well done, Dante. Fowler, a possible outside linebacker at the next level, is projected to go 13th overall to New Orleans in NFL.com’s latest mock draft.
New Delhi: The Election Commission on Tuesday announced that bypoll to the Satara Lok Sabha seat will be held on October 21 along with the Maharashtra Assembly elections. The decision to hold the bypoll was taken after the Bombay High Court decided on an election petition on Satara Lok Sabha elections. The order reached the Commission on Monday. Satara MP from Nationalist Congress Party Udayanraje Bhosale had recently joined the Bharatiya Janata Party after resigning from Lok Sabha. The counting will take place on October 24 when assembly election votes will be counted.
San Francisco: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has promised his employees to “fight and win” if Democratic presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren wins the 2020 election and moves forward with her stated plan to break up the big US tech firms. Adopting a more aggressive style than he habitually uses in his public appearances, Zuckerberg directed his remarks at his employees last July to address questions about the firm’s present and future, an interview that was recorded and made public on Tuesday on the Web page The Verge, Efe news reported. Also Read – Swiggy now in 500 Indian cities, targets 100 more this year “I mean, if she gets elected president, then I would bet that we will have a legal challenge, and I would bet that we will win the legal challenge. And does that still suck for us? Yeah. I mean, I don’t want to have a major lawsuit against our own government. … We care about our country and want to work with our government and do good things. But look … if someone’s going to try to threaten something that existential, you go to the mat and you fight,” he said. Also Read – New HP Pavilion x360 notebook with in-built Alexa in India Zuckerberg was referring to the Massachusetts senator’s proposal to split up the biggest tech firms – if she wins the Democratic presidential nomination and is ultimately elected in 2020 – given that she feels that they have “excessive” power both as market entities and in relation to their users or customers. On Tuesday, after the audio recording of Zuckerberg was released, Warren doubled down on her proposal and said on Twitter that “What would really ‘suck’ is if we don’t fix a corrupt system that lets giant companies like Facebook engage in illegal anticompetitive practices, stomp on consumer privacy rights, and repeatedly fumble their responsibility to protect our democracy.” “I’m not afraid to hold Big Tech companies like Facebook, Google, and Amazon accountable. It’s time to #BreakUpBigTech,” the senator said in another tweet. In the recordings provided by The Verge, Zuckerberg justified his opposition to Warren’s plan by – among other things – saying that dividing big companies will not make interference in elections less likely, rather the reverse, given that in his judgment “the companies can’t coordinate and work together.” The tech giant based in Menlo Park, California, in recent years has been mired in a multitude of scandals that have significantly strained its public image, the biggest of these being the one involving British consulting firm Cambridge Analytica, which used an app to gather personal data on millions of Facebook users without their consent and then used that info for political ends. The consulting firm prepared psychological profiles on voters that it allegedly sold to the campaign of President Donald Trump during the runup to the 2016 election, among other things. Facebook is being investigated for potential monopolistic practices by the Federal Trade Commission, which earlier this year levied a $5 billion fine on the firm for failing to properly maintain user privacy.
Kolkata: A total of 34 functional teams have been formed to smoothen the process of merger of United Bank of India (UBI), Punjab National Bank (PNB) and Oriental Bank of Commerce (OBC), a senior official said. The merger is scheduled to come into force from April 1 next year. “Thirty four functional teams have been created to come out with solutions for the process of integration,” a UBI official told PTI. A team comprises two members each from the three banks from different functional areas, he said. Also Read – Commercial vehicle sales to remain subdued in current fiscal: Icra “The functional teams will also try standardising the loan process, credit terms and benefits extended to the customers in the interim period till the merger comes into effect to avoid customer-related issues in the future,” the official said. The UBI had conducted customer meets at Kolkata, Guwahati and Patna to allay their apprehensions about the future of banking, the official said. UBI managing director and CEO A K Pradhan had earlier said that though the balance sheet merger is likely to happen by April 1 next year, it will take another three to six months after that for the HR and IT integration to be completed. Also Read – Ashok Leyland stock tanks over 5 pc as co plans to suspend production for up to 15 days He had said the complete harmonisation among the three entities would take another 12 to 14 months after the merger. Senior officials of the three banks had held a meeting recently. The merger will make the new entity the second-largest bank in the country after the State Bank of India (SBI) with a total business volume of Rs 18 lakh crore. This comes after the Centre’s announcement to consolidate 10 public sector banks into four. Allahabad Bank will be merged with Indian Bank while the Union Bank of India, Andhra Bank and Corporation Bank will be amalgamated. Canara Bank and Syndicate Bank will also be merged. Last year, the Centre had approved the merger of Vijaya Bank and Dena Bank with Bank of Baroda that came into effect from April 1 this year. In 2017, the State Bank of India had absorbed five of its associate banks and the Bharatiya Mahila Bank.
New Delhi: The Sky Is Pink is ready to hit the screens this month. Its actor Priyanka Chopra Jonas found the film very special and saw a connection between her real-life parents and her character in the movie. Director Shonali Bose’s The Sky Is Pink is about a couple that lose their daughter to pulmonary fibrosis, a serious immunity disease. The film has Priyanka and Farhan Akhtar acting as parents of that girl. “This is a very special film based on a special real-life couple who thrive through extraordinary circumstances. I feel like in a cynical world today where we live our own lives, this film shows you what it can do when you have a family, family support,” Priyanka said. Also Read – ‘Terminator: Dark Fate’ has James Cameron’s fingerprints all over it: Arnold Schwarzenegger”I feel like when I read the movie (script), that’s when you know.. jumped out at me so much because my parents were like that. They were extremely supportive and that gave me the ability to be who I am and where I am today,” she added and requested the audience to not leave their brains behind to watch this movie. The film also stars actor Rohit Saraf. “This talks about love, togetherness and loss. It talks about all these things in a very unique and different perspective.”