LIB Life Half-year Report: Who’s In?

first_imgAs the end of the year fast approaches, LIB Life, a component of the Daily Observer newspaper, is now releasing its first half of the year report on artists and their artistic achievements, bloggers and fashion promoters that are doing well in their respective fields.This first half of the report highlights six outstanding artists, a blogger and fashion promoter, retelling their record-breaking moments and other personal achievements.At the end of the list, we will acknowledge some people that may likely appear on the year-end list.8. Let’s get the ball rolling in eighth place with popular female blogger Berenice Mulubah for giving us juicy entertainment news on Liberian artists in the Diaspora.A few weeks ago the Diaspora Entertainment Awards nominated her for the Blogger of the Year award.In the early part of this year Berenice published her second book, a collection of poems called Purple Honey Lips. Lately, she has been added to the writing team of the new web-based series Daughters in America, produced by fellow Liberian, Love Weah.7. In the seventh spot is Quincy B. It would seem that this year holds great prospects for the 21 year-old singer and producer, evidenced by his recent unveiling as Lonestar Cell MTN’s new Brand Ambassador, in what is believed to be a mouthwatering endorsement deal.His deal makes him the second Liberian artist to be named Brand Ambassador of Lonestar Cell MTN, after Takun J.While the terms of the deal have not been revealed, however, it puts the artist on a higher path for success depending on the eventual outcome.6. Sitting comfortably in sixth place is Junda Morris-Kennedy, owner of Runway Liberia, an annual fashion event held in the U.S. and aimed at promoting and supporting Liberian fashion designers.The event featured some of the best models from around the world, and attracted classical fashion designers unveiling distinct western and African pieces.In the audience was former advisor to President Barrack Obama, Dr. Jamal Bryant, founder of the Empowerment Temple Church in the U.S.Well-known international Liberian fashion personalities Dolly Barnes, Abraham Pelham, US based and renowned makeup artist and hairstylist Lewina David, and upcoming fashion designer Tarloh Sayeh were honored for their contributions to the fashion industry.Also present was Giovanni Francisco from Italy, who represented the Logo Store.5. In fifth place is none other than celebrated rapper Jon Bricks, who a few months ago returned home from China with Chinese superstar Zhang Zhang and held a successful three-day concert.The Diva Dream Alive concert, which was held at different locations, pulled in thousands of people, with Bricks rumored to having grabbed approximately half a million Liberian dollars.Also, the rapper completed a successful five-nation European business tour, which allowed him to meet top music executives and promoters in Europe.While in Europe, Bricks shot a banging video, produced by Catia Productions in Milan for his new single Conqueror.Still on Bricks, the rapper runs a charity organization called Zama Plus Foundation International, aimed at providing support to the less fortunate in Liberia.4. Since his travel to Nigeria looking to etch his name on the African music landscape, things have been moving in the right direction for F dot A. For this, he comfortably sits in fourth place.A few weeks ago, the Afro pop artist was nominated for the Nigerian Entertainment Awards in the African Male Artist (non-Nigerian) category.Few months ago, F dot A returned home with a two-day successful concert with Naija cutie Chidinma for his hit single Desire.On June 22 of this year, F dot A’s single Desire went Number 1 on Soundcity West African Music and Video Chart after gaining over 300,000 views on YouTube. 3. At third place is visual artist Leslie Lumeh, who recently participated in the Lumieres d’Afriques (The Enlightened Africa) art exhibition where several artists used a variety of artistic presentations to highlight Africa’s latent creative talents.Lumeh, who has been profiled on CNN and other international media networks, ably represented Liberia at the historical event, which featured 54 African artists displaying works in a wide variety of creative media that brought the continent’s problems to the fore.Lumeh’s presentation, which was widely admired, was an acrylic on canvas piece titled The Light Within.2. In second is Scientific, and his inclusion is simple. The hip-hop artist became the first Liberian artist to have his song Rotate, featuring Quincy B, picked up by Vevo, one of the world’s biggest streaming services.Scientific also became the first rapper to win the hip-hop category of the LMA three years in a row.1. In first place is sensational singer Dash Coleman.This guy, who is not yet an A-list Liberian artist, has set one of the greatest records in the Liberian entertainment industry by winning four awards during a single awards night.He won the awards from the just ended Liberia Music Awards (LMA).Though K-Zee holds the record for being the first person to win three LMA awards during a single awards night, however, it was Dash who broke the record by win four awards at the just ended LMA.Artists like Eric Geso, Sweetz, Kobazzie, DenG and producers like Lorenzo Loveland and Infectious Michael are all doing well, and we hope they keep it up.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

SA’s newest teleco launched

first_imgSubscribers are then able to purchase their own choice of standard telephone handset to plug into the O-Tel hardware and then make highly affordable voice calls to any telephone in the world with the added advantage of optional internet access. South Africa’s emerging status as one of the world’s most liberalised telecoms markets has received a boost with the launch of O-Tel, the latest entrant into a rapidly hotting-up telecoms space. O-Boxes Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material The recent awarding of i-ECNS licences by Icasa, following last year’s Altech court judgment, has turned South Africa into one of the world’s most competitive telecoms markets overnight. Nationwide coverage O-Tel is a licensed national telecoms operator, having receiving its individual Electronic Communication Network Services (i-ECNS) license from the Independent Communications Authority of SA (Icasa) in January. O-Tel supplies subscribers with proprietary wireless routers called O-Boxes designed by the globe’s most respected telecoms equipment manufacturers. The telecoms company is able to offer a nationwide telecommunications service from day one because subscribers connect either to the Vodacom 3G network or Telkom’s ADSL network to be able to make telephone calls or surf the internet. 24 February 2009 Telecoms liberalisation Subscribers are able to sign up for O-Tel service either via the company’s website or via a network of dealers. “O-Tel can provide anyone within Telkom ADSL or Vodacom 3G coverage with a telephone line for R99 per month with no contract necessary,” O-Tel CEO Mohammad Patel said in a statement this week. SAinfo reporter “The available opportunities within the South African telecoms market right now are phenomenal,” Patel said. “Icasa has to be commended for finally issuing i-ECNS licences so that innovative companies can step up to the challenge of reducing the country’s historically unaffordable telecoms costs.” “Few of the almost 533 companies to which licences were awarded will be able to … challenge the existing telecoms status quo because many of them have chosen to build their own networks,” Patel said. “Recognising the prohibitive cost of building a national telecoms network, O-Tel decided to use the networks of existing operators.” The company promises business and residential subscribers tariffs as affordable as 45 cents (excluding VAT) per minute for local calls to Telkom numbers, true per-second billing from the first second (though international calls are billed per minute), a 24-hour turnaround time, both telephone and internet connections and nationwide coverage.last_img read more

The Problem With Believing Coding Is No Longer Important

first_imgRelated Posts Artificial intelligence is topping headlines. Whether it’s self-driving cars or Alexa storing your grocery preferences, it seems that AI is finding its way in to just about everything these days, and the implications for daily life and work over the next decade are likely to be significant.Many jobs are at risk for disruption, and cities across the country are thinking about how to prepare their economies for a world in which AI is everywhere. Nothing is safe from speculation, so it should come as no surprise that even coding has come under scrutiny as a skill that may become obsolete in this brave new artificially intelligent world. As one Quartz article put it, coding may soon become “as useful as learning ancient Greek.”In recent years, the “learn to code” movement has exploded. It seems everyone — from politicians to tech industry leaders — has become a champion of the importance of learning to code. Programs like Code.org strive to make exposure to coding more ubiquitous for kids across the country and advocate for more robust computer science curriculum for all students. Coding bootcamps have popped up all across the country to target this very phenomenon.This calls into question: Is the coding movement overhyped? Is there value to learning to code, or is it just one more skill that will be automated by artificial intelligence?The logic of the cynics is relatively simple: AI systems are starting to learn how to develop code, which could make programming more intuitive, less specialized, and more capable of automating. It is already true that programming languages are constantly evolving — while you probably would have run into a programmer with extensive knowledge of Perl in the 1990s, today, you’re more likely to meet someone with Python or JavaScript skills. As the building blocks of technology, it’s only natural that as the tech industry evolves, coding languages will as well.The above-mentioned Quartz article rightly points out that the ultimate objective of programming is to communicate what you want a system to do. It’s true that before long, AI will make that communication feedback loop much easier for people who have no idea how to write code. What implications does that have for businesses? For employees in tech? For students and younger generations? We’ve been told for around a decade that coding is the No. 1 skill for workers to have, but does that assertion still hold true?This kind of thinking is counterintuitive. The question is not which specific tasks will be automated, but rather what types of skills will be perpetually important. In practical terms, we’re nowhere near the level of automated coding capability that would put developers out of a job. Businesses and employees who make decisions based on the assumption that coding is close to obsolete will be sorely disappointed.More importantly, however, the capacity to solve problems as well as the ability to understand how technical systems work and improve upon them will only grow in importance as technical systems come to govern more of our daily processes.As more industries incorporate artificial intelligence into their operations, most of the U.S. workforce will require a basic knowledge of coding. AI will create more technologically advanced careers as it displaces some of the more labor-intensive jobs. As a result, human labor will become more specialized and technical, requiring at least a basic understanding of how these systems operate.Automated Coding Has a Long Way to GoAutomated code generation won’t be perfected in the near future, and even as it gains popularity, there will be limits to what it can do. GitHub is giving automated coding a shot on its platform, but it’s in an early stage.Right now, GitHub’s automated coding is simply evaluating code to discover whether it’s relying on packages with known vulnerabilities. When it finds one, it might suggest a fix. None of it requires the creative thinking that actual coding needs. That’s hardly taking over any jobs or making coding an obsolete language.There are other systems testing automated coding, too. For instance, for AI to reliably create code, it’s essential for it to understand the problem you’re trying to solve. Microsoft and Cambridge have taken a step in making this possible with their DeepCoder algorithm, but, again, it’s a relatively small step.Researchers showed DeepCoder how basic code is used to solve simple math problems. When given a new problem, the algorithm solves it by predicting what would have been used to solve similar problems. It learns how to create its own solutions. It’s extremely impressive, but the algorithm can only work with a few lines of code. Entire programming languages are far too complex for the tool to sort out.For the foreseeable future, technologically skilled humans will be needed to understand how programming code is being utilized, realize its potential to increase productivity, and make relevant decisions based on that knowledge.Skills That Can’t Be AutomatedLearning basic coding skills provides the building blocks to make a system function; furthermore, these skills empower humans to fully understand the role of technology in society and the ways it can be controlled to solve problems. To Apple CEO Tim Cook, coding is the most important second language for kids to learn. “It’s the language that everyone needs,” he says, “and not just for computer scientists…you can [use it to] express yourself to 7 billion people in the world.”It is impossible to know exactly where innovations in automation will lead. That being said, it will likely lead to a world where even more of life and jobs involve interacting with technology. In that case, having a greater level of literacy in how to build, manage, and iterate technical systems will be a boon. Thus, learning to code — at least enough to gain insight into these systems — will remain valuable.Much of automation will focus on taking over a large share of the more mundane tasks. In fact, according to futurist Martin Ford, jobs that will most likely be automated are those that are repetitious and predictable. The creativity to solve problems in ways that benefit everyone, to shift a company’s focus from one goal to the next, and to respond fluidly to trends and outside influences will continue to be important no matter what systems are being used. These are the very skills that learning to code cultivates.As many industries become more dependent on automation, more computing jobs will be needed in those industries, not fewer. Again, coding requires a certain level of creativity to solve problems, and automated artificial intelligence hasn’t mastered this skill — it’s still rule-based.The ability to build and cultivate relationships with people is vital in many different industries; it’s yet another area where, for the foreseeable future, humans have the upper hand to machines. From medical professionals and their patients to businesses and their clients, relationships are the backbone of many companies’ strategies. While jobs that require such skills won’t disappear, the required skills for these jobs will become more advanced as they incorporate AI into other processes.Even as AI gets smarter and potentially develops greater ability to generate code, it won’t replace the need for human coders. It will, however, create a need for coders to be more creative and beef up their data science and AI skills, as well as learn new technologies like how to code for IoT products and platforms. As more people learn to code, they’ll be able to more effectively harness new technology to identify issues, create solutions, and change how the world works.As technology and languages are always changing, learning to code encourages lifelong learning, a habit that will only become more vital in the future. This is why disregarding the importance of coding is dangerous. Those who assume that learning code will soon be useless will be discouraged from acquiring those new skills — and that’s when their jobs will truly be at risk.We’re still in the early stages of AI, and coding skills will be essential to moving it forward. As technology and artificial intelligence take more of a hold on our economy, the ability to code will only become more integral to each company, industry, and the economy as a whole. China and America want the AI Prize Title: Who … Haley Shoaf is the VP of Impact at LaunchCode, a nonprofit organization preparing individuals for and matching them with opportunities in the technology industry. As one of the winners of the 2017 MIT Inclusive Innovation Challenge, LaunchCode has been recognized for expanding “the tech workforce by providing free coding education to disadvantaged job seekers.” Prior to LaunchCode, Haley was a Venture for America fellow in St. Louis. Haley Shoaf Tags:#AI#coding AI: How it’s Impacting Surveillance Data Storage A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Leveraging Big Data that Data Websites Should T…last_img read more