The threat of NCDs

first_imgAccording to the World Health Organisation (WHO), of all the major health threats that have emerged over the years, “none has challenged the very foundations of public health so profoundly as the rise of chronic Non-Communicable Diseases”. Caused by poor lifestyle choices, such as tobacco use, alcohol abuse, unhealthy diets, and physical inactivity, NCDs have resulted in large numbers of young people dying. A significant number have also fallen ill and, therefore, cannot contribute to their families or the development of their communities in any way.Heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and chronic respiratory diseases, once linked only to affluent societies, have affected, and continue to affect, every country in the world – with the poor suffering the most owing to the lack of proper medical care and access to drugs, etc.At the turn of the century, chronic NCDs were not widely recognised as a barrier to development and were not included in the Millennium Development Goals. In terms of gaining attention and financial support, these diseases were overshadowed by the devastating epidemics of HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria, and the large number of maternal and childhood deaths.As stated by the WHO, much of its work in the earliest years of the decade involved collecting the data and making the arguments that would elevate NCDs on the global health and development agendas. On their part, countries – especially those with emerging economies – used the WHO STEPwise approach to gather standardised data on the true burden of these diseases. Those efforts culminated in 2011 when the United Nations General Assembly held a high-level meeting on NCDs and adopted a far-reaching Political Declaration. The Political Declaration acknowledged that the threat of NCDs constitutes one of the major challenges for development in the 21st Century, undermining social and economic progress throughout the world.In 2013, the World Health Assembly adopted a comprehensive global monitoring framework for NCDs, with nine voluntary targets and 25 indicators. The Health Assembly also approved the WHO Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable Diseases 2013–2020, which provided a roadmap and menu of options for taking coordinated and coherent action to attain the targets.In Guyana, NCDs are taking a huge chunk of the budgetary allocation to the Public Health Ministry. According to official figures, currently, about 70 per cent of the Ministry’s budget is being spent on tackling NCDs.From all indications, the Chronic Disease Unit (CDU), which has been established to tackle NCDs, has been doing a commendable job so far; but, certainly, there is need for efforts to be stepped up in certain areas. For example, there can never be enough education and public affairs programmes geared at reminding persons of the need to make positive lifestyle choices such as eating healthy, exercising daily, avoiding abuse of alcohol, and staying away from tobacco use. There is still a great deal of ignorance in the public about NCDs and how persons can avoid being affected; hence, messages should be carefully designed to address same using the relevant channels.Additionally, we have always stressed the need for more collaborative efforts among all stakeholders, including support from Private sector bodies, to tackle NCDs, since all of them are affected as a result of loss of labour force, etc. It could be recalled that the Public Health Ministry, late last year, had met with members of the Guyana Business Coalition on Health Awareness, and a Memorandum of Understanding was developed. The idea behind the initiative was to get the Private Sector more involved in the efforts, especially as they relate to funding critical programmes aimed at tackling NCDs. It was hoped that such funding will cover support groups, training, screening, and purchasing of gym materials to allow for more physical activities in workplaces, etc. The entities had also agreed to enforce no-smoking policies in their work environment. This was a good start and should be replicated among other agencies covering a range of areas aimed at encouraging healthy lifestyles in every community.Discussions surrounding NCDs should constantly be kept on the national development agenda where serious efforts are made at all levels to reduce the large numbers of persons suffering or facing death. We cannot afford to treat chronic NCDs lightly.last_img read more

Balotelli MUST step up training efforts, insists Liverpool boss Rodgers

first_img Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli 1 Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has told striker Mario Balotelli he must step up his efforts in training, or risk not being picked for the Reds first-team.The £16million summer signing did not make the 18-man matchday squad for saturday’s goalless FA Cup fourth round draw at home to Bolton, despite being fit after recovering from illness.Balotelli has struggled to settle since arriving at Anfield and hasn’t started a game since the 2-1 Premier League defeat to Chelsea in November.And Rodgers said he spent an hour on Friday telling the Italy international exactly what he had to do in order to be considered.“I am judging it every day in training – Mario is exactly the same as every other player, there is no special treatment for anyone,” said the Reds boss.“Fabio Borini and Rickie Lambert are working tirelessly in training and when they go on they have contributed and young Jordan Rossiter, on the bench today, has been brilliant in training and I have to judge it on that.“If you want to contribute you have to be at it every single day in training in order to be in the squad on match day.“We had an hour or so yesterday chatting and he understands where he is at.“He knows exactly what is required to be in this squad before he can be in the team.“It is difficult for him but he knows the level of what this team is at – you see the aggression in our pressing and if you can’t do that you are not going to be a part of what this team is trying to achieve.“He was fully understanding. He saw the level of performance against Chelsea [in Tuesday’s Capital One Cup] and in fairness to him he actually said it would be a struggle for him in terms of how he would play the game because he is a box player really.“But there is much more asked of this team and he saw it clearly on the field the other night. I am confident he will respond well.”First choice striker, Daniel Sturridge, returns to training tomorrow having not featured for the Reds since August 31 because of a thigh injury, and Rodgers added the England man could make the squad for the League Cup semi-final second leg against Chelsea on Tuesday.“Now it is just about getting that condition with football fitness and game fitness,” said Rodgers.“We will see how he is for Tuesday but if he is not ready for Tuesday he will be back for sure against West Ham next weekend.”last_img read more

Drivers, everyone could see your dumb road behavior

first_imgWhile Shen, an aspiring actor, does not deliberately hit the road in search of lunacy, he remains acutely aware that it surrounds him and everyone else. Keeping his camera phone nearby for when the moment strikes, he only shoots when it’s safe. And like any good crusader, he loves to see justice served. In a recent coup for sane drivers, a ravenous motorist sped through a red light at a busy intersection while stuffing his face, setting off a red-light police camera and traveling only a few yards before getting stuck again in traffic. “So not only is this guy getting a hefty fine and points on his license for a moving violation, he made no headway whatsoever,” wrote Shen on the blog. It took only seven minutes on the road with Shen on Monday before a lumberjack look-alike in an oversized pickup truck nearly slammed into our car after swerving to avoid a bus without looking. “Say cheese,” said Shen as he leaned over and snapped a photo of the violating vehicle while we waited in traffic on Van Nuys Boulevard. Two minutes later, he pointed out a fleet of cars turning left without blinkers on. Three minutes passed before a tailgater nearly kissed our bumper before losing patience and darting off to make an unsafe lane change. Sixty seconds later, a van brazenly turned left on a red light in front of a police station. A short time later, while we were turning right on Victory Boulevard, the driver of a Volkswagen Bug squeezed between us and the curb and made a foolhardy attempt to beat us into the turn. With drivers like these, it’s no wonder the number of traffic fatalities in the San Fernando Valley in a given year roughly matches the number of homicides. In 2006, there were 87 homicides in the Valley and 87 people killed in car crashes. A year earlier, the Valley saw 79 homicides and 77 deaths during collisions, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. Somewhat horrified by their roadside experiences, a devoted following of the blog contribute nearly half the photos displayed along with their own white-knuckle stories. Misha Co of Los Angeles submitted a picture of a van carrying children that tried to race ahead of a school bus stopped on a busy street in Koreatown. Without looking first or signaling, the van driver switched lanes and nearly hit Co. “The issue that astounds me most is the same sort of behavior that some Angelenos exhibit whether in or out of their vehicles – arrogance and lack of consideration,” said Co. Erik Anderson of Santa Monica shared a story on the blog about traveling on a jam-packed Interstate 5 Freeway near San Onofre when a road-raging woman nearly rear-ended him and flashed her lights to get him to move over. She veered three lanes over, ended up in a slow lane and then tried to pass him in a closed car-pool lane bordered with reflectors that she plowed through. “But this story has a happy ending,” said Anderson. “A CHP officer was waiting in that lane just a few hundred feet up.” alongfortheride@dailynews.com (818) 713-3683160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! “People don’t realize the violations they make,” said the 29-year-old Los Angeles man. “It’s astounding to me. It really is.” His goal? To promote safe driving and have mandatory road tests randomly issued to all motorists every six years, weeding out the ones who should never, ever climb behind the wheel. Because tailgaters, speeders and totally spaced-out motorists are so run-of-the-mill, the blog mostly focuses on more egregious roadway sinners: red-light runners, intersection blockers and red-faced road ragers. It blurs out license plates and blacks out drivers’ eyes to avoid lawsuits, but captures in detail their tremendous sense of entitlement on the roads. Their offenses are ranked on an idiocy meter. “They get angry if someone passes in front of them. They get angry and want to get through yellow lights,” said Shen. “I think people don’t signal because they’re afraid you won’t let them in.” Hey, rude and reckless motorists of Los Angeles, say cheese! Your madcap ways could land you on a stinging blog that skewers lousy drivers with photos and quips of their mind-blowing offenses. Everyone knows L.A. can’t drive, and now lacantdrive.com proves it. Started last fall by New York transplant Michael Shen, the Web site provides a humorous outlet for law-abiding motorists stuck on the roads with, well, total morons. last_img read more

Exclusive – Blame the Sunderland players! Former Black Cat on Gus Poyet’s sacking

first_imgJulio Arca believes Sunderland’s players must take some responsibility for Gus Poyet’s sacking.The Uruguayan was relieved of his duties on Monday afternoon, following Saturday’s shocking 4-0 defeat to Aston Villa.The Black Cats are 17th in the Premier League table, just one point off the drop zone with nine matches of the season remaining.And former Stadium of Light favourite Arca insists the squad must take their share of the blame for a woeful campaign.“People are just blaming the manager but you have to look at the players’ performances as well,” he told Hawksbee and Jacobs.“The manager is trying to pick the best 11 every weekend but, if the players don’t perform, it’s very hard for him. I’m sure the players know they haven’t been playing well.“They have nine games left to work hard and try and get as many points as possible. It’s not going to be hard for them.”last_img read more

It’s easy to see why fans reacted like this to Dembele’s tweet after Spurs game

first_img Mousa Dembele had a fantastic game for Tottenham against Juventus Tottenham fans went crazy for Mousa Dembele during the club’s comeback in the Champions League against Juventus.Having been 2-0 down, Spurs eventually drew 2-2 in Turin and although Harry Kane and Christian Eriksen were the scorers, Dembele earned just as much praise.He controlled the midfield, dictated the tempo and his strength in driving forward impressed a lot of people.To highlight how highly the Tottenham faithful – as well as other fans – rated Dembele on Tuesday night, have a look at some of the responses to a tweet he posted after the game. 1last_img

Kimberley to get jewellery factory

first_img13 May 2008The provincial government and private investors are to open a gold jewellery manufacturing facility worth R100-million in Kimberley, in the Northern Cape, in an effort to ensure that more value is added to precious metals locally, with finished products destined for export markets.The Gold Chain Technology project, focussing on the production of gold and silver chains, will progressively escalate its production and employment. It is expected that in four years time, an estimated 300 people will be employed and the factory will process a total of three tons of gold and five tons of silver.The project is a partnership between the provincial government, black economic empowerment partner Solandra and Q-Quality, an Italian company that will contribute skills, technology and access to markets.“This initiative will focus on mass chain production for the export market – specifically the United States,” said the Northern Cape Premier’s office in a statement, with the initiative being part of the country’s diamond strategy and drive for beneficiation in South Africa.The project is also funded by Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and financially supported by the Augusta-Westland, which supplied helicopters as part of the South African arms deal.“The impact of this project will have a tremendous influence on the Northern Cape as well as the national economy and has the potential to expand and to compliment existing and new ventures,” the statement read, adding that the initiative would contribute positively towards the country’s gross domestic product and trade balance.“This is a key opportunity for facilitating empowerment in the jewellery manufacturing sector, while continuing regional development among the poorest communities in this country,” said Abel Malinga of IDC’s mining strategic business unit.Gold Chain Technology said it will have trained 460 people in jewellery manufacturing and design within five years and achieve sales knocking on R1-billion annually within five years.“The bulk of the skills will be transferred from Italian technicians to locals with several future trainers acquiring machinery and equipment training in Italy,” the organisation said.Furthermore, the provincial government and diamond mining giant De Beers are to establish an academy to promote the jewellery profession in the province, with students from the academy being employed by the Gold Chain Technology project.The move will provide South Africa with a foothold into the lucrative world jewellery market. Currently annual gold retailing is a R450-billion industry, with demand topping 2 800 tons.Principle consumers include India (25%), the US (18%) and China (12%) with the major producers being India (19%), Italy (10%) and Turkey (9%).Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

LinkedIn Reveals The Top 25 Job Skills Of The Year

first_imgLooks like 2014 was the year of the data scientist, judging by LinkedIn’s “25 Hottest Professional Skills of 2014” report. The social network people use to impress their peers and future bosses, LinkedIn knows very well what skills recruiters search for on its site and which particular talents get people hired. So it analyzed the data in more than 330 million member profiles to figure out which skill was the most in-demand. Globally, the winner is—drumroll, please—statistical analysis and data mining. That makes perfect sense, if you take into account the other big trends this year and the intense load of data they’ll accumulate about us. Data, Data Everywhere—But What Does It Mean? This year, several emerging technologies got their sea legs.Smart homes got some juice, thanks to acquisitions by Samsung and Google, and Apple’s splashy HomeKit announcement. Wearable devices, and their continually evolving health and fitness tracking features, also leapt to the foreground this year. Meanwhile, TV streaming officially graduated from geek hobby to a mainstream obsession—so much so that the TV tracking experts at Nielsen decided to monitor online television viewing too.That’s just for starters. All of these innovations and more will lead to a new high in data aggregation, the likes of which we have not seen before. And someone has to make sense of it all. So companies have been vying for the folks who can do just that. Big, sexy articles by the likes of Forbes, Harvard and Time magazine probably helped the cause, ratcheting up the profile and appeal of occupations that, until now, remained largely behind the scenes. Of course, that’s not the only area to ponder. LinkedIn also singled out 24 other “hot” skills in its list.The 25 Hottest Professional Skills Of 2014  Statistical Analysis and Data MiningMiddleware and Integration SoftwareStorage Systems and ManagementNetwork and Information SecuritySEO/SEM MarketingBusiness IntelligenceMobile DevelopmentWeb Architecture and Development FrameworkAlgorithm DesignPerl/Python/RubyData Engineering and Data WarehousingMarketing Campaign ManagementMac, Linux and Unix SystemsUser Interface DesignRecruitingDigital and Online MarketingComputer Graphics and AnimationEconomicsJava DevelopmentChannel MarketingSAP ERP SystemsIntegrated Circuit (IC) DesignShell Scripting LanguagesGame DevelopmentVirtualizationMy, how times change. Last year, LinkedIn reported that the top skill in 2013 was social media marketing, followed by mobile development. Now, last year’s winner doesn’t even appear on the chart, and mobile development fell to #7. Also, take note, developers: While programming skills remain important to employers, the Perl, Python and Ruby coding languages took a tumble, from #4 to #10 now. But The U.S. Has Its Head In The CloudsThe LinkedIn report also offers a country-by-country breakdown of its report. Notably, statistical analysis and data mining came in second on the U.S. list, beat out by cloud and distributed computing. Other trends LinkedIn spotted:Recruiters are in demand globally. Recruiting was in the top 20 across most of the countries we examined. In Brazil, it even came up as the 2nd hottest skill….STEM specialties dominate hiring priorities. It’s hard not to notice that most of the skills that made the list are related to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM)….Marketing is back in vogue. Interestingly, another quite popular profession on the list is marketing. The focus this year was on SEO/SEM specialists, campaign managers and digital marketers….Consider this a capsule view on the recruitment year that was, and a preview of what employers will clamor for as the new year arrives. Lead image by smi23le Massive Non-Desk Workforce is an Opportunity fo… 3 Areas of Your Business that Need Tech Now Related Posts Tags:#employment#Jobs#LinkedIn#recruiting center_img IT + Project Management: A Love Affair adriana lee Cognitive Automation is the Immediate Future of…last_img read more

Everything You Wanted To Know About Android “Launchers” But Were Afraid To Ask

first_imgThe Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement brian p rubin What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Google likes to promote its Android ecosystem with the tagline, “Be together, not the same.” Almost nowhere is that more apropos than in the first thing most users see when they pick up an Android phone: Its home-screen interface.Apple users can rest easy in the knowledge that any iPhone they pick up will look pretty much the same once they turn on the screen. The same is emphatically not true for Android, where most phone manufacturers have gone out of their way to customize Android’s basic interface with skins—known technically as “launchers”—that put their own stamp on a phone with differently styled design elements and even new features.These launchers have even become selling points for some companies. On Monday, for instance, LG released a video showing off its new UX 4.0 launcher, which will presumably show up on its G4 flagship phone later this April:You may spend most of your time in particular apps, but your phone’s home screen is still the first thing you see when you turn it on. It’s where you check the time, scan your notifications, move from app to app and—assuming you still do this—make and receive phone calls. It’s a pretty important part of what using a smartphone is all about.Yet many users don’t really understand why a Samsung Galaxy S6 looks and behaves so differently from a Moto X or HTC One M9. Even fewer probably grasp that they don’t have to live with the interface their smartphone manufacturer installs for them.Learning a little about launchers, it turns out, offers both power and freedom. Comparing the interface options from Samsung, Motorola, HTC and LG can help inform your decision if you’re in the market for a new phone. And knowing more about alternatives—from the stock Android interface offered by Google to other third-party skins also available in the Play Store—can set you free from a subpar launcher or even one that’s just grown tired for you.With all that in mind, let’s take a look at what the world of Android launchers has to offer.A Quick Tour Of AndroidFirst things first: The Android operating system and the launcher that controls the interface are two separate things. Of course, that’s not exactly obvious to the casual user.As you’d probably guess from the name, the Android OS is common to all Android phones. It handles all the phone’s basic functions, from shuttling data around and interfacing with underlying hardware (like, say, cameras and accelerometers) to managing apps. The launcher, by contrast, is basically just another app that sits on top of Android to display and manage the interface. It basically “launches” apps and widgets, sort of like the “Start” button in Windows used to do. Different launchers have different looks, sometimes offer different features, and may be more or less streamlined.Your new Android phone will come with a launcher pre-installed—typically one designed by the phone’s manufacturer. Let’s take a look.Stock Android (Nexus Devices, Motorola)If you ask most diehard Android fans, “stock” is the interface they prefer to all others. It’s Android as envisioned by Google itself, working simply and cleanly without any extra bells and whistles. For some users, it might be the most boring version of Android. For devotees, however, it’s the only version of Android worth using at all.Android Lollipop’s Material Design in action. Photo by Adriana Lee for ReadWriteStock Android—which, at the risk of oversimplifying things, is itself basically a launcher—is more easily defined by what it lacks than by its features. On the one hand, it’s something of a blank canvas for users to customize just how they like. On the other hand, it leaves the work of personalization to the user.And because it lacks the whiz-bang features of some of the other launchers described below, the virtues of stock Android can be a little difficult to grasp. Overall, however, its lack of extra features means it runs fast and clean, with fewer opportunities for OEM-installed software to get in the way or bog down the device’s performance.Stock Android also offers deep Google Search and Google Now integration. Each pane on the Android home screen provides a Google Search bar at the top, allowing for quick searching. And with just a few settings checked, you can say “OK Google” to your phone and issue voice commands to launch apps, search the web, send texts, place calls, and more. Motorola Android Lollipop, courtesy of MotorolaGoogle Now is the default launcher with stock Android devices, specifically anything in the Nexus line running Android 4.4 or later. Motorola’s smartphones, like the Moto X and Moto G, have skins installed that are extremely similar to stock Android.It’s also possible to install the Google Now launcher on other phones for a stock Android-like experience. More on that below.Bottom Line: Stock Android is the choice of Android purists. If you want a mobile experience that’s zippy and uncomplicated, go for stock Android.TouchWiz (Samsung)If you ever hear this sound in a crowded room, you’re almost certainly hearing Samsung’s TouchWiz. TouchWiz is easily identified because of its bright colors, a bluish glow on its notifications, and its cartoony icons. Samsung’s UI also gives a few more customization options for app organization and home screen layout, while stock Android is fairly Spartan in that regard. When most people think of Android, this is likely the version they’re imagining. That’s because of the sheer number of Samsung-made smartphones that have overrun the world—and TouchWiz runs on all of them. One analyst reported that Samsung’s phones accounted for nearly a full quarter of all smartphones sold in Q3 2014 in the world.While stock Android throws its Google search bar widget at the top of the display, TouchWiz puts it smack in the middle of your home screen. But while the bar is a permanent (if unobtrusive) fixture on stock, TouchWiz lets you remove it if you so desire. The navigation bar at the bottom also shunts the app drawer button to the right-most side of the display, as opposed to the center position it usually occupies on other Android UIs. TouchWiz also offers the option of using the “Easy Home” launcher, which simplifies the UI even further.TouchWiz’s Easy Home launcher features even BIGGER ICONS. Image via Android Stack Exchange.Samsung also has its own take on Google’s voice recognition. Called “S Voice,” it aims to deliver the same kinds of voice command functionality as Google Now, but head-to-head comparisons have shown that Google Now outperforms S Voice in terms of speed and functionality. Samsung Galaxy Note Edge, and Note 4, both running TouchWiz. Both feature the Google Search widget in the center, with the app drawer button on the right side, a placement unique to TouchWiz. Photo by Adriana Lee for ReadWrite.TouchWiz also offers users the Multi Window feature, which puts running apps on-screen side by side. It’s a nice addition that gives Samsung an edge in terms of productivity and multitasking.On the other hand, these extra features and options can sometimes weigh down a phone’s speed—though that’s something of a concern no matter which non-stock Android you’re using. In my own experience with TouchWiz, sometimes apps would hang, crash, or simply suffer from unexplainable bugs. My old Samsung Epic 4G crashed frequently, with trouble running Google Maps. My girlfriend’s Galaxy Light has shown some troublesome bugs for months, such as a display that refuses to turn off unless you manually hit the power button. Recent reviews of the Galaxy S6 say that Samsung used a lighter hand on its latest version of TouchWiz, making it more usable than previous iterations. It’s possible, then, that S Voice has grown up and the launcher is more reliable overall. Bottom Line: If you want to use the latest Samsung flagship, be ready for TouchWiz. It’s bright, and has lots of user-friendly options in terms of customization, multitasking, and access. But watch out for the bugs.Sense (HTC)Where Samsung’s TouchWiz is bright and cartoony, HTC’s Sense is a bit slicker and stylized. Its colors are a bit more muted with more minimally drawn icons. Sense starts with a time and weather widget at the top of the home screen, but an otherwise standard navigation bar layout on the bottom. The newest version of Sense brings Themes with it, which gives users a starting point in terms of wallpaper, icons, and color schemes from which to further customize their experience. Some of the themes available on HTC Sense.Sense also has options for customizing the navigation bar as well as a few other organizational widgets that other versions of Android don’t offer, like Sense Home and BlinkFeed. The former organizes apps you’ll need depending on where you are in the world (like home, work, etc.), while the latter is reminiscent of the suggestions offered by Google Now. Users can also use Sense to more easily customize their lock screens with the information they want to see at a glance, like appointments, weather, and email.Prior to the release of Android Lollipop, one of Sense’s biggest draws was its stylish rendering of the operating system and its slick animations. Lollipop’s “Material Design” styling catches stock Android up in that regard, which could make many of Sense’s other features feel unnecessary or redundant. Once again, I had a less-than-stellar experience with Sense on my Evo 4G LTE, which had the unfortunate habit of dropping my Wi-Fi network even though its indicator showed  I was still connected. Sense also tended to kill tasks or apps that were running in the background—technically a good way to save on battery and RAM, but still annoying when I wanted to resume a song or podcast I’d started earlier.Still, Sense has a unique style that stands out, and is far less garish than most other Android UIs. And with the forthcoming release of the One M9, it’s possible that HTC has made its latest version of Sense even better.Bottom Line: Sense has undeniable style, and gives your phone a premium software feel. Some of the extras HTC packs into Sense aren’t particularly necessary, but they might be fun additions to your mobile life. UX (LG)LG’s long-running rivalry with Samsung has resulted in an Android UI that shares a lot in common with TouchWiz. The simply titled “UX” (which, presumably, stands for “user experience”) isn’t quite as colorful or bright as TouchWiz, but it does offer some of the same kinds of features.Like Samsung’s Multi Window for same-screen multitasking, UX has QSlide and Dual Window: the former opens a few specific apps in separate floating windows on the display, while Dual Window, well, opens two app windows side-by-side. Dual Window in action on the LG G Flex.Some new features revealed (and helpfully translated from Korean by SlashGear) by LG to be coming to UX 4.0 include Quick Shot for fast photo snapping even when the display is off, Smart Alert for activity and wardrobe suggestions based on that day’s weather forecast, and a drag and drop feature to move Facebook events into your phone’s calendar app. UX 4.0 also features Knock Code, which can activate and unlock the phone’s display with a user-set pattern that they tap on the screen itself:I’ve never actually owned an LG handset, so I can’t speak to personal experience in terms of UX’s overall performance and stability. However, it stands to reason that, like TouchWiz and Sense, UX’s extra features might keep Android from running as quickly or as smoothly as the stock OS.Bottom Line: Some interesting photography options and multitasking capabilities make UX an interesting up-and-comer in the world of Android skins. It’s got a few strong similarities to TouchWiz, so it’s possible that deciding between the two could have more to do with a buyer’s hardware preferences in the end.“Be Together, Not The Same”Overall, each different Android launcher has its own advantages and drawbacks. For what it’s worth, I’ve long wanted an app on my Nexus 5 that gives me the same kind of multitasking features offered by Samsung and LG. Most third party app solutions I’ve found seemed sketchy in terms of adware or too disruptive to the overall Android experience, so I’ll keep pining. But for my money, even without single-screen multitasking, the best Android is pure Android. Meanwhile, if you hate the skin you find on your new phone, there are no shortage of launchers to choose from. Just look them up on the Play Store, download and install, and suddenly it’s like having a brand-new phone. (Well, kind of.)On the original Kindle Fire, I was desperate to get away from Amazon’s terrible FireOS (a heavily modified, forked version of Android). I enjoyed switching to the Go Launcher EX, but even more launchers have been released since then.If you have a different take on these Android UIs, let me know in the comments below.  Lead image courtesey of Kārlis Dambrāns; Android images courtesy of Google; HTC Sense image courtesy of HTC; LG Dual Window image courtesy of LGcenter_img Related Posts Tags:#Android#Explainer#Google#HTC Sense#LG#LG UX#Motorola#Samsung#Samsung TouchWiz#Sense#TouchWiz#UX Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaceslast_img read more

Copenhagen a Failure? Blame China, Says One Informed Source

first_imgJournalist Mark Lynas was “in the room,” as he puts it, as President Barack Obama wrangled with the most powerful leaders in the world in the waning moments of the Copenhagen talks. Lynas says China is at fault for scuttling the deal:To those who would blame Obama and rich countries in general, know this: it was China’s representative who insisted that industrialised country targets, previously agreed as an 80% cut by 2050, be taken out of the deal. “Why can’t we even mention our own targets?” demanded a furious Angela Merkel. Australia’s prime minister, Kevin Rudd, was annoyed enough to bang his microphone. Brazil’s representative too pointed out the illogicality of China’s position. Why should rich countries not announce even this unilateral cut? The Chinese delegate said no, and I watched, aghast, as Merkel threw up her hands in despair and conceded the point. Now we know why – because China bet, correctly, that Obama would get the blame for the Copenhagen accord’s lack of ambition.China, backed at times by India, then proceeded to take out all the numbers that mattered.last_img read more