Daily Archives: February 8, 2017

Nick Cave to play south coast show

ROCK star Nick Cave is set to play a south coast date this year.

The Australian-born singer will play at Bournemouth International Centre with his band the Bad Seeds in support of their latest album Skeleton Tree.

The critically-acclaimed album was released last year and the UK tour follows shows in the USA and Canada.

The album was accompanied by the release of documentary film One More Time With Feeling, which focuses on the recording of the album and the death of Cave’s son Arthur, who fell from a cliff near Brighton in 2015.

Tickets for the BIC show, which is on September 24, go on sale at www.nickcave.com at 9am on Friday, February 17.

IBM lance « Digital – Nation Africa » et investit 70 millions de dollars pour doter l’Afrique de compétences informatiques grâce à une plate-forme Watson gratuite qui s’adresse à 25 millions de personnes

– L’initiative « IBM Digital – Nation Africa » pour l’enseignement et les compétences confirme l’intérêt d’IBM pour les « New Collar Jobs »

– Ce programme doit toucher pas moins de 25 millions personnes dans toute l’Afrique et stimule le développement des compétences nécessaires pour une réussite professionnelle dans l’économie de la connaissance

JOHANNESBURG et ARMONK, New York, 8 février 2017 /PRNewswire/ — IBM (NYSE : IBM) investit 70 millions de dollars (environ 945 millions de rands) dans le développement des compétences informatiques nécessaires dans le numérique, le cloud et l’informatique cognitive afin de promouvoir la main-d’œuvre du 21è siècle en Afrique. L’initiative, intitulée « IBM Digital – Nation Africa », repose sur une plate-forme d’apprentissage cloud conçue pour proposer des programmes gratuits de développement des compétences à pas moins de 25 millions de jeunes Africains au cours des cinq prochaines années, ce qui permettra de stimuler les compétences numériques et l’innovation en Afrique.

Photo – http://mma.prnewswire.com/media/465850/Africa_Digital.jpg

Cette initiative s’inscrit dans la démarche mondiale d’IBM visant à développer la prochaine génération de compétences nécessaires pour les carrières dites « New Collar ». « New Collar » est un terme utilisé par IBM pour décrire de nouveaux types de carrières qui ne nécessitent pas un diplôme universitaire de deuxième cycle mais plutôt des compétences fort prisées dans les domaines de la cybersécurité, de la science des données, de l’intelligence artificielle, du cloud, etc.

Pour que les jeunes d’Afrique puissent bénéficier d’un avenir cognitif, il convient d’obtenir un niveau beaucoup plus élevé de compétences numériques. Au sommet de la pyramide des compétences, on trouve les développeurs, qui doivent savoir comment créer des solutions capables d’exploiter toute la puissance de la cognition, et les entrepreneurs qui connaissent ce potentiel. L’initiative « IBM Digital – Nation Africa » a été conçue pour renforcer les compétences numériques générales, accroître le nombre de développeurs qualifiés capables de faire appel à des moteurs cognitifs, et de permettre aux entrepreneurs accomplis ou en herbe de créer des entreprises sur la base de nouvelles solutions.

Grâce à un environnement d’apprentissage en ligne cloud offert gratuitement sur IBM Bluemix, la grande plate-forme cloud pour l’entreprise, cette initiative proposera toute une série de programmes, qu’il s’agisse de la maîtrise des outils informatiques ou de hautes compétences informatiques fort prisées, comme l’engagement social, le respect de la vie privée en ligne et la cyberprotection.

Les utilisateurs chevronnés pourront explorer des thèmes informatiques orientés vers leur carrière, comme la programmation, la cybersécurité, la science des données et les méthodologies agiles, ainsi que des compétences importantes dans le monde de l’entreprise, comme l’esprit critique, l’innovation et l’esprit d’entreprise. Cette initiative entend autonomiser les citoyens, les entrepreneurs et les communautés en Afrique grâce à des connaissances et à des outils permettant de concevoir, de mettre au point et de commercialiser leurs propres solutions numériques.

Fondé sur Watson, le système en ligne cognitif s’adaptera et apprendra. Il passera en revue les multiples échanges que l’initiative d’éducation aura avec les étudiants afin de les orienter vers les cours adéquats et d’aider IBM à peaufiner ses cours afin d’adapter au mieux le matériel pédagogique en fonction des besoins des utilisateurs. Watson créera également des connaissances approfondies sur la base d’informations anonymes recueillies lors des échanges avec les étudiants. Cela permettra aux entrepreneurs et aux développeurs de savoir laquelle des solutions Bluemix actuelles répond le mieux à leurs besoins et ainsi d’être en mesure de concevoir une solution qui présente le plus grand potentiel sur le marché.

Ayant pour objectif de doter pas moins de 25 millions de personnes des compétences informatiques très prisées au cours des cinq prochaines années, ce programme sera lancé depuis les bureaux régionaux d’IBM en Afrique du Sud, au Kenya, au Nigeria, au Maroc et en Egypte. Cette démarche permettra d’élargir l’initiative à l’ensemble du continent.

L’Afrique compte environ 200 millions de personnes âgées de 15 à 24 ans. D’ici à 2040, le continent devrait être le lieu où se concentre la plus grande main-d’œuvre au monde, avec, selon les estimations, 1 milliard de personnes en âge de travailler (*State of Education in Africa Report 2015). Or, de nombreuses entreprises africaines invoquent un déficit de compétence comme l’un des principaux obstacles à la croissance. Rien qu’en Afrique du Sud, où plus d’un quart de la main-d’œuvre est au chômage, les entreprises peinent à trouver les compétences adéquates, surtout dans le secteur informatique.

« Pour IBM, un enseignement performant et de haute qualité dans l’informatique est un facteur décisif de la vitalité économique en Afrique. En permettant l’accès aux normes libres, aux meilleures pratiques, aux outils et aux cours d’IBM, la vaste portée de cette initiative permettra de développer les compétences vitales », explique Hamilton Ratshefola, directeur général de pays pour IBM South Africa. « S’ils entendent trouver des solutions aux problèmes de l’Afrique, tous les secteurs doivent permettre à la main-d’œuvre existante et future d’opérer à l’avant-garde de technologies comme l’informatique cognitive et l’informatique en nuage. C’est cela qui stimulera la croissance ».

Cette initiative donnera gratuitement accès à des milliers de ressources en anglais, y compris ce qui suit :

  • Des applis mobiles prêtes à l’emploi
  • Des guides : guides Web, démonstrations, simulations interactives, séries vidéo et articles
  • Des évaluations en ligne : toute une série de tests d’autoévaluation permettant de suivre les progrès des participants, ainsi que des ‘Open Badges’ reconnus par le secteur en fonction des compétences numériques. Ces badges peuvent être communiqués à d’éventuels employeurs
  • Des volontaires : création d’un programme de volontaires visant à promouvoir et renforcer les compétences numériques au sein de leur communauté
  • Un marché des applis : création d’une plate-forme sur laquelle de nouvelles applications peuvent être mises à disposition gratuitement ou vendues.

Cette initiative sera soutenue par le Programme des Nations unies pour le développement (PNUD), lequel s’attache à renforcer les compétences informatiques ajustées aux conditions du marché en Afrique et au Moyen-Orient. IBM collaborera avec le PNUD pour des opportunités STEM (sciences, technologie, ingénierie et mathématiques), la fourniture de compétences, la certification et l’accréditation. Le PNUD collaborera avec leur réseau de partenariats gouvernementaux existants afin d’élargir le programme à l’ensemble de l’Afrique.

Le Rapport sur le Développement humain 2015 du PNUD a fait apparaître que la technologie affectait la nature du travail en introduisant de nouvelles façons de communiquer, de nouveaux produits et de nouvelles exigences en termes de compétences. Les nouvelles technologies renforcent également les tendances actuelles de la mondialisation économique, rassemblant les travailleurs et les entreprises dans un réseau mondial grâce à l’externalisation et des chaînes de valorisation mondiales.

« Ce processus transforme le travail et met à l’épreuve les politiques nationales et internationales. Afin de répondre à cet enjeu mondial ici en Afrique du Sud, ainsi que dans d’autres pays prioritaires en Afrique. Le PNUD est heureux d’exploiter sa présence mondiale, ses connaissances du développement et des partenariats de longue date afin de fournir un contexte, un élan et une échelle à cette collaboration avec IBM », explique M. Walid Badawi, directeur du PNUD en Afrique du Sud.

IBM a une présence directe dans 24 pays africains et a réalisé plusieurs investissements importants sur le continent ces dernières années, y compris des bureaux, des centres d’innovation et d’autres installations perfectionnées. La société a un laboratoire de recherche à Nairobi, au Kenya, et elle a ouvert en 2016 un deuxième centre de recherche à Johannesburg, en Afrique du Sud.

En 2015, IBM a lancé une vaste initiative visant à élargir son Africa Technical Academy et son Africa University Program, offrant de hautes compétences dans les technologies du cloud, de l’analytique et du big data, et touche aujourd’hui plus de 150 établissements académiques sur le continent. En septembre 2016, un mémorandum d’accord a été signé au Maroc entre le ministère de l’Education nationale et de la Formation professionnelle et IBM, en vue du lancement du programme P-TECH (Pathways in Technology Early College High School) au Maroc. P-tech est un modèle mondial innovant pour l’éducation, conçu par IBM, en étroite collaboration avec des éducateurs américains. La société collabore également avec des dizaines de start-ups en Afrique du Sud.

IBM est présente en Afrique depuis les années 1920, collabore de longue date avec des établissements d’enseignement et propose des solutions transformationnelles qui visent à valoriser l’enseignement supérieur et son apport à la société.

IBM noue un dialogue avec des communautés à travers le monde en offrant sa technologie, ses services et son savoir-faire pour résoudre quelques-uns des problèmes les plus complexes au monde, et elle applique sa technologie et son savoir-faire à des problèmes de société, comme le développement de l’éducation.

* http://www.aaionline.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/AAI-SOE-report-2015-final.pdf (State of Education in Africa Report 2015- The Africa America Institute)

A propos d’IBM
L’IBM Academic Initiative permet aux universités d’accéder aux logiciels, aux cours et aux experts d’IBM pour ses principales technologies, comme le cloud, l’informatique cognitive et la sécurité. Pour de plus amples informations, rendez-vous sur https://developer.ibm.com/academic/.

Poursuivez la conversation sur Twitter : #IBMDigitalNationAfrica

Photos :
https://www.flickr.com/photos/ibm_media/albums/72157678275586311

Contact médias :

Hulisani Rasivhaga
IBM External Relations South Africa
+27 76 790 8175
Hulisani@za.ibm.com

Logo – http://mma.prnewswire.com/media/95470/ibm_logo.jpg

IBM Launches “Digital – Nation Africa”: Invests $70 Million to Bring Digital Skills to Africa with Free, Watson-Powered Skills Platform for 25 Million People

– “IBM Digital – Nation Africa” Education and Skills Initiative Expands IBM’s Global Emphasis on “New Collar Jobs”

– Program designed to reach up to 25 million people across Africa, supports development of skills required for career success in a knowledge-based economy

JOHANNESBURG and ARMONK, New York, Feb. 8, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — IBM (NYSE: IBM) is investing $70 million (approximately ZAR 945 million) in building much-needed digital, cloud, and cognitive IT skills to help support a 21st century workforce in Africa. The initiative, “IBM Digital – Nation Africa,” provides a cloud-based learning platform designed to provide free skills development programs for up to 25 million African youths over five years, enabling digital competence and nurturing innovation in Africa.http://prnewswire2-a.akamaihd.net/p/1893751/sp/189375100/thumbnail/entry_id/1_744bqmjv/def_height/400/def_width/400/

Photo – http://mma.prnewswire.com/media/465850/Africa_Digital.jpg

This is part of IBM’s global push to build the next generation of skills needed for “New Collar” careers.  “New Collar” is a term used by IBM to describe new kinds of careers that do not always require a four-year college degree but rather sought-after skills in cybersecurity, data science, artificial intelligence, cloud, and much more.

For the youth of Africa to be able to benefit from a cognitive future there needs to be a much higher level of digital literacy. At the top of the skills pyramid are developers, who need to know how to create solutions that can leverage the power of cognitive, and entrepreneurs who are aware of the potential. IBM Digital – Nation Africa is designed to help raise overall digital literacy, increase the number of skilled developers able to tap into cognitive engines and enable entrepreneurs and would be entrepreneurs grow businesses around the new solutions.

IBM Corporation logo. (PRNewsFoto/IBM Corporation) (PRNewsFoto/)

Through a free, cloud-based online learning environment delivered on IBM Bluemix, the premier cloud platform for business, the initiative will provide a range of programs from basic IT literacy to highly sought-after advanced IT skills including social engagement, digital privacy, and cyber protection.

Advanced users will be able to explore career-oriented IT topics including programming, cybersecurity, data science and agile methodologies, as well as important business skills like critical thinking, innovation, and entrepreneurship. The initiative aims to empower African citizens, entrepreneurs, and communities with the knowledge and tools to design, develop, and launch their own digital solutions.

Based on Watson, the cognitive online system will adapt and learn. It will review the multiple interactions the education initiative will have with students, to help direct them to the right courses and help IBM refine the courses to better adapt the material for the needs of the users. Watson will also create a depth of knowledge using anonymous information gathered from interactions with the students. This will help entrepreneurs and developers understand which current Bluemix solutions best meet their needs and refine their idea to help them design a solution that has greatest market potential.

With the aim of equipping as many as 25 million people with sought after IT skills over the next five years, the program will be launched from IBM’s regional offices in South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria, Morocco, and Egypt. This will enable the expansion of the initiative across the continent.

Africa has approximately 200 million people between the ages of 15 and 24. By 2040, the continent is expected to be home to the world’s largest labor force, with an estimated working age population of 1 billion (*State of Education in Africa Report 2015). Yet many African companies cite a local skills gap as one of the major bottlenecks to growth. In South Africa alone, where more than a quarter of the workforce is unemployed, businesses struggle to find appropriate skills, particularly in the IT field.

“IBM sees effective, high quality IT education as a key driver of economic vitality in Africa. Through access to open standards, best practices, IBM tools, and course materials, the broad scope of this initiative will enable vital skills development”, says Hamilton Ratshefola, country general manager for IBM South Africa. “In order to find solutions to Africa’s challenges, industries across the spectrum need to enable the existing and future workforce to perform at the forefront of technologies such as cognitive and cloud computing. This will be the key to spurring economic growth.”

The initiative will provide access to thousands of resources, in English, free of charge, including:

  • Ready-to-use mobile apps
  • Guides – web guides, demonstrations, interactive simulations, video series, and articles
  • Online Assessments – A range of self-assessment tests to track the progress of individuals, together with industry recognized ‘Open Badges’ aligned to digital competencies. The badges can then be shared with prospective employers
  • Volunteers – Creation of a volunteer program to support and promote digital literacy within their communities
  • App Marketplace – Provision of a platform on which new applications can either be made freely available or sold.

The initiative will be supported by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), which has a special focus on fostering market-driven ICT skills in Africa and the Middle East. IBM will collaborate with UNDP on opportunities for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) skills delivery, certification, and accreditation. UNDP will work with their network of existing government partnerships to extend the program throughout Africa.

UNDP’s 2015 Human Development Report highlighted that technology is affecting the nature of work by introducing new ways of communicating, new products and new demands for skills. New technologies are also reinforcing and deepening previous trends in economic globalization, bringing workers and businesses into a global network through outsourcing and global value chains.

“These processes are reshaping work and testing national and international policies. In an attempt to address this global challenge here in South Africa, as well as in other priority countries in Africa. UNDP is pleased to leverage its global presence, development knowledge, and long standing partnerships to provide context, traction and scale to this collaboration with IBM,” says Mr. Walid Badawi, UNDP Country Director in South Africa.

IBM has a direct presence in 24 African countries and has made several significant investments on the continent in recent years, including offices, innovation centers and other advanced facilities. The company has a research laboratory in Nairobi, Kenya and opened a second research facility in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2016.

In 2015, IBM rolled out a major initiative to expand its Africa Technical Academy and Africa University Program, providing advanced skills in cloud, analytics, and big data technologies, reaching today to over 150 academic institutions, in the continent. In September 2016, a memorandum of understanding was signed between the Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training and IBM Morocco, for the launch of P-TECH program (Pathways in Technology Early College High School) in Morocco. P-tech is an innovative global education model, designed by IBM, in close partnership with American educators. The company is also working with dozens of start-ups in South Africa.

IBM has been present in Africa since the 1920’s, and has a long history of collaborating with educational institutions and providing transformational solutions focused on providing value to higher education and its contribution to society.

IBM engages with communities around the globe by offering its technology, services, and expertise to solve some of the world’s most complex problems, applying technology and expertise to societal issues such as education development.

* http://www.aaionline.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/AAI-SOE-report-2015-final.pdf (State of Education in Africa Report 2015- The Africa America Institute)

About IBM
The IBM Academic Initiative provides universities with access to IBM software, courseware and experts around key technologies such as cloud, cognitive computing and security. For more information go to https://developer.ibm.com/academic/

Continue the conversation On Twitter: #IBMDigitalNationAfrica

Photos are available here:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/ibm_media/albums/72157678275586311

Media Contact:

Hulisani Rasivhaga
IBM External Relations South Africa
+27 76 790 8175
Hulisani@za.ibm.com

Logo – http://mma.prnewswire.com/media/95470/ibm_logo.jpg

Welcome to hell on Earth: Heatwave builds across eastern Australia

Pity the poor souls who live in Bourke, Birdsville and Moomba.

These rural towns are all about to endure four days above 40 degrees. Birdsville and Moomba will suffer through three days above 45.

This summer’s most extensive, and brutal, heatwave is building over central and eastern Australia.

Inland parts of Queensland, New South Wales, South Australia and northern Victoria are set to swelter through at least four days of extreme heat, according to the Bureau of Meteorology.

Meteorologist Andrea Pearce said “pools” of hot air had been hovering over the centre of Australia, leading to the build up of heat.

“We’ve had a high pressure system sitting across southern Queensland and northern New South Wales for weeks now, and it’s been preventing any frontal systems coming through and flushing out all of that really hot air,” she said.

“We’ve had over 40 degrees in many, many locations and we expect that to continue. We see a relentless pool of temperatures above 40 degrees.”

The only cool place to escape the heat? The pub, according to Birdsville Hotel manager Ben Fullagar.

“We’ve got the coolest building in town, it’s fully air-conditioned, a stone building,” he explained.

“All we can hope is that the air-conditioners and refrigerators don’t pack it in, because they can only take so much.”

On Sunday, however, a new weather front will start to move through Australia, dropping the mercury in most of Victoria and South Australia.

By Monday, New South Whales should begin to feel the cool change, followed by Queensland.

VICTORIA

Northern parts of the state are in for the hottest conditions, with Mildura expected to get two days of 44 degrees on Thursday and Friday, dropping to 42 degrees on Saturday.

Echuca, on the border of NSW, is expected to cop 41 degrees on Thursday, 43 degrees Friday and 40 degrees on Saturday.

“In Victoria the winds have turned northerly, so some of that very hot air is going to move across Victoria, especially in the north of the state,” Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Chris Godfred said.

“We’re going to see temperatures rise well above 40, and then that heat will continue across until the weekend, and we’ll get a cool change on Sunday.”

The hot air will move to Albury on Friday, where temperatures will reach 43 degrees, and then 41 degrees on Saturday.

Melbourne will be cooler, with a top of 37 degrees on Thursday, dropping to 26 degrees on Friday.

Melburnians might survive summer without recording a single 40-degree day.

NEW SOUTH WALES

Wet weather in Sydney has made way for warmer conditions as the interior heat leaks eastwards.

Bourke, a small town 800 kilometres north-west of Sydney, is expected to record Australia’s hottest temperature for the week, peaking at 47 degrees on Sunday.

In Penrith, Thursday’s forecast top of 36 degrees will seem almost cool given what’s expected after that. Friday to Sunday, the mercury is expected to climb to 44-45 degrees.

A top of 29 degrees is predicted for Sydney on Thursday before a trio of scorching days, with 36, 39, and 38 degrees forecast by the Bureau of Meteorology for Friday through to Sunday.

Weatherzone meteorologist Graeme Brittain said it could be the hottest three-day spell on record for Sydneysiders.

The hottest towns in Australia this week.

The hottest towns in Australia this week. Photo: Bureau of Meteorology

QUEENSLAND

Birdsville, a town of only 120, has sweltered through temperatures above 43 degrees since Australia Day.

“We’ve had hotter days, it’s just difficult at the moment because it’s day after day – normally we get a break, but not this year,” Birdsville Hotel manager Ben Fullagar said.

“But life will just continue on the same track here in Birdsville.”

Inland centres such as Ipswich and Gatton are also forecast to reach some of the hottest temperatures recorded for the region, particularly over the weekend.

“We’re expecting temperatures to reach the high 30s for Saturday and reach over 40 degrees on Sunday, with Gatton expecting 42 and Ipswich 41,” Bureau senior forecaster Brett Harrison said.

Brisbane temperatures will be in the low 30s over the next few days, but the city is forecast to hit 35 on Saturday and 37 degrees on Sunday.

SOUTH AUSTRALIA

In Moomba, an outback town 770 kilometres north of Adelaide, a new record could be set for the most days about 45 degrees.

The Bureau of Meteorology predicts the town is in for a six-day stretch above 45 degrees, dropping to a “mild” 39 on Sunday.

An extreme heat warning was issued by the Bureau for the state on Wednesday.

Adelaide reached 42.4 degrees on Wednesday, and will get to 41 degrees Thursday. Friday and Saturday temperatures will remain high, above 37 degrees.

Gaston Ramirez joins Middlesbrough on warm-weather training break in Spain

Gaston Ramirez has returned to the Middlesbrough fold in Spain as he attempts to rebuild his reputation on Teesside.

The 26-year-old Uruguay international handed in a transfer request last month with champions Leicester attempting to lure him away from the Riverside Stadium.

However, Boro swiftly rejected the Foxes’ overtures and insisted the former Southampton midfielder, who has missed the last six games with a knee injury, was not for sale.

Head coach Aitor Karanka insisted as the saga unfolded that Ramirez would not be leaving and would eventually be assimilated back into the squad, and that process began in earnest on Tuesday when the Spaniard and his players, including the South American, headed off on a four-day warm-weather training break on the Costa Blanca.

Karanka said at the time: “He is and he will be an important player in this team and he knows that. He knows the effort that the club made to sign him last season and therefore that the club made this summer to sign him permanently.”

Ramirez, who was given a few days off last week to clear his head, has not made a senior appearance since the 0-0 Premier League draw with Leicester on January 2 and Boro have taken just two points from a possible 12 in his absence to slip to within a point of the relegation zone.

Karanka has been delighted with the player’s contribution since his permanent capture during the summer following a successful loan spell and is confident he can make an impact once again as he attempts to steer the club away from trouble.

The pair were joined on the plane by full-back George Friend, who has missed the last two games with a calf injury sustained in the FA Cup fourth round victory over Accrington.

Boro face in-form Everton at the Riverside on Saturday looking for a first league win since they beat Swansea 3-0 on December 17.