New upmarket hotel for Joburg

first_img2 June 2008Local hospitality chain Southern Sun and property developers Hyprop Investments are to build a four-star hotel at the Hyde Park Shopping Centre in Johannesburg, at a cost of R180-million, with the hotel set to open by June 2009.In a statement released last month, Southern Sun said that the development of the 132-room hotel featuring a contemporary design would offer a welcome addition to the growing demand for upmarket accommodation in Hyde Park, one of the city’s more affluent suburbs.Another motivator is the unprecedented rise in the demand for quality hotel rooms, particularly in the Sandton area, where occupancy is running high and the demand for more hotel beds is on the increase.Southern Sun MD Helder Pereira said the group’s involvement with the development was a natural progression from the company’s growth and re-positioning strategy.“Southern Sun has invested significantly in a refurbishment and expansion strategy over the past few years, and we believe that the hotel will be an exciting addition to our existing portfolio,” he said.The Southern Sun Hyde Park hotel will be built on top of the existing parking garage of the Hyde Park shopping centre, with the 132 contemporary designed rooms being built over three floors.The lifestyle area will consist of a reception area and a 60-seater restaurant offering breakfast, lunch and dinner, while a whiskey bar will provide for relaxation with friends or business associates with the finest selection of whiskeys and cigars on offer.The hotel will also have two boardrooms and a generous function room to cater for business meetings and events, adding to the large portfolio of venues around the city.An outside area will feature a pool, bar and seating for guest to relax and take in the beautiful views, while those wishing to enjoy some retail shopping will be able to use a walkway linking the hotel to the Hyde Park shopping centre.For those concerned with their fitness while away from home, a gym on the top level of the hotel will provide the opportunity to work out while enjoying the beautiful views over the upmarket northern Johannesburg suburb.“Typical of the upmarket Hyde Park area, Southern Sun Hyde Park is in the ideal location for the market category it will serve and is likely to become an upper four-star hotel of choice for many visitors to Johannesburg,” the statement read.SAinfo reporter Would you like to use this article in your publicationor on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

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TB toolkit for SA companies

first_img5 June 2008The Global Health Initiative of the World Economic Forum (WEF) and pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly have launched a new toolkit that aims to boost the involvement of South African companies in tackling tuberculosis (TB) in the country.The announcement, made at the World Economic Forum on Africa in Cape Town this week, comes as South Africa faces an emerging threat of TB/HIV co-infections and fatal drug-resistant strains of the disease.In a statement on Tuesday, the WEF said the toolkit was developed in collaboration with the Lilly MDR-TB partnership, together with inputs from national and international partners, including private sector representatives.The toolkit provides concrete guidelines to help South African companies rapidly increase their TB control programmes by adopting a joint approach to tackling both TB and HIV.With some 70% of TB patients in South Africa also infected with HIV, the importance of an integrated approach to care is clear, and the South African government has recognised the importance of engaging the private sector to achieve its TB case detection and treatment targets.South African companies have the opportunity to catalyse effective public-private partnerships to facilitate successful patient and programme management, lessening the economic impact of TB, which currently leads to a decline in worker productivity estimated at US$13-billion (R100.7-billion) annually.“Businesses have a fundamental responsibility towards both their employees and the wider community, and for preservation of their long-term interests by ensuring the national development of human capital to drive economic growth,” said Eli Lilly Corporate Affairs and Communications vice president Alex Azar. “Tuberculosis has the capacity to undermine all of this.”Shattering the cycleAccording to the WEF, the TB toolkit aims to shatter the cycle of transmission that so often defines the gravity of TB. By intercepting the progression of the disease and its lethal synergy with HIV/Aids, businesses can better leverage their existing health infrastructures and management tools and resources to greater effect.Combined with the technical expertise and knowledge available under South Africa’s national TB programme and the national Aids control programme, companies can provide a critical mass of resources for successful TB control.“It’s a disturbing paradox to think that people should die from a curable disease like tuberculosis,” said Dr Shaloo Puri, head of the India Business Alliance, and India and tuberculosis adviser at the Global Health Initiative of the World Economic Forum. “The sooner South African businesses start awakening to the extent of the problem, the sooner they can understand the associated risks in the workforce and to their business.”Community engagementOn a practical level, the toolkit will help companies increase opportunities and activities in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of TB/HIV co-infections in the workplace.These measures will in turn help alleviate the burden and costs associated with absenteeism, disrupted workflow and reduced productivity.By engaging proactively with the community, which forms a key component of the overall business environment, businesses can offset the marginal cost of partnering with local stakeholders with the huge benefits they will reap through greater efficiency in the workplace and the good will in the community.Although South Africa represents only 0.7% of the world’s population, it has 28% of the global number of HIV-positive TB cases.“South African business leaders must start to recognize the crucial role they can play in TB care and the importance of the workplace setting as a win-win setting for TB control,” the WEF says.“Despite being preventable, treatable and curable, TB continues to devastate the continent. Unless individuals and organizations unite in advocacy and action, everyone stands to lose.”SAinfo reporter Would you like to use this article in your publicationor on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

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Savant promotes SA technology

first_img The multilevel project is an ongoing initiative, which includes participation in local and international trade shows, as well as an effective web presence. These efforts are complemented by extensive promotion material, advertisements and projects, both locally and abroad. When it was established in 2001, its broad objectives were to grow the ICT and electronics industry to increase employment, broaden participation, encourage exports, and promote small business development. Savant – the South African Technology Vanguard – is the country’s marketing and branding campaign for the electro-technical sector, which includes electrical engineering, electronics, information technology and telecommunications. A unit within the Department of Trade and Industry’s Industrial Development Division, it aims to accelerate the development of the country’s hi-tech sector. SAinfo reporter Reviewed: 2 May 2013Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material Becoming a local and global voice for the ICT and electronics sectors; Creating awareness about the South African electrotechnical and ICT industries; Strengthening the sector to become globally competitive by showcasing the successes in the South African economy; Promoting export and investment opportunities; Helping to identify potential international partners and facilitating matchmaking opportunities; andCo-ordinating an information portal across the sector and between both the private and public sector.center_img Website: www.savant.co.za Savant acts to alert prospective partners, both at home and abroad, that the local technology industry can compete with the best the world has to offer. Strengths The DTI says South Africa’s competitive advantage is created from the defence and mining sectors as well as high-level government investment in research and development in strategic programmes. The country also has strong engineering and integration capabilities from working as a prime contractor on complex projects.Objectives Savant plans to help grow the sector by:last_img read more

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Hawaiian plans capacity growth after 2017 passenger record

first_imgPhoto Hawaiian Airlines Hawaiian Airlines’ growth strategy continued to pay dividends in 2017 as passenger numbers hit a record 11.5 million to deliver 13 consecutive years of growth.Passenger numbers on Hawaii’s biggest and longest-serving airline were up 4.1 per cent as it filled more seats on its planes and boosted its load factor by 1.5 percentage points to 85.8 per cent.About half the growth came from Japan, according to vice president of network planning and revenue management Brent Overbeek, as the airline benefited from investments in growing capacity and passenger volumes, especially in Tokyo.Read our review of Hawaiian.It also added capacity on inter-island routes such as Kona-Lihue (on the island of Kauai) and Honolulu-Kapalua (Maui) while experiencing solid growth in many mature markets, Overbeek said.While Hawaiian has not said how many extra passengers it expects in 2018, it plans  to increase capacity by 6.5 per cent.This includes new  routes to the mainland such as its Airbus A321neo services between Kahului on Maui to Oakland.Hawaiian took delivery of its first of 18 A321neo aircraft in November and plans to use the fuel-efficient aircraft to help boost services to the US West Coast.The 189-passenger aircraft features 16 leather recliners in the Premium Cabin, 45 Extra Comfort premium economy seats, and 128 economy seats.The mid-range aircraft, which will complement twin-aisle jet services to 11 gateway US cities, opens up new destinations for Hawaiian and it this week  added a daily Long Beach-Honolulu A321neo service starting May 31 to the list.The year-round service joins Portland -Kahului, due to start on January 18, Oakland- Lihue ( April 11) and  San Diego-Kahului (May 1). Los Angeles -Kona (Hawaii) will join the roster in the summer.In the pipeline for the airline’s fleet of Airbus A330s is increased capacity to Japan and New Zealand. Hawaiian and Japan Airlines plan to codeshare from March in a partnership that will provide passengers of both carriers with more options.Prospects are also promising for the airline’s services between the Hawaiian Islands, where it provides about 170 jet flights daily“The trends we are seeing for travel within the islands of Hawaii are also strong,’’ Overbeek said.The record passenger result comes as Hawaiian chief executive Mark Dunkerley retires in March and hands over the reins to chief commercial officer Peter Ingram.Hawaiian doubled the number of passengers flown under Dunkerley as it added service to destinations such as Tokyo, Osaka, Sapporo, Seoul and Beijing and started new routes to Auckland, Sydney, Brisbane, Australia and New York City.Over the same period,  the company’s gross revenues increased four-fold to $US2.64 billion and its  share price rose from a 52-week low of 29 cents in 2003 to $US60.90 over a 52-week period ending November.last_img read more

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Top-Down: A New Approach to the Semantic Web

first_imgalex iskold 1 But there are alternative approaches. We will argue that a more pragmatic, top-down approach to the semanticweb not only makes sense, but is already well on the way toward becoming a reality. Many companies have been leveraging existing,unstructured information to build vertical, semantic services. Unlike the original vision, which is ratheracademic, these emergent solutions are driven by business and market potential.In this post, we will look at the solution that we call the top-down approach to the semantic web,because instead of requiring developers to change or augment the web, this approach leverages and builds on top of current web as-is.Why Do We Need The Semantic Web?The complexity of original vision of the semantic web and lack of clear consumer benefits makes the wholeproject unrealistic. The simple question: Why do we need computers to understand semantics? remains largelyunanswered. Tags:#Analysis#web Spend less time searchingSpend less time looking at things that do not matterSpend less time explaining what we want to computers Related Posts 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting The Challenges Facing The Top-Down ApproachDespite being effective, the somewhat simplistic top-down approach has several problems.First, it is not really the semantic web as it is defined, instead its a group of semantic web servicesand applications that create utility by leveraging simple semantics. So the proponents of the classic approach would protest and they would be right.Another issue is that these services do not always get semantics right because of ambiguities. Becausethe recognition is algorithmic and not based on an underlying RDF representation, it is not perfect.It seems to me that it is better to have simpler solutions that work 90% of the time than complex ones that never arrive. The key questions here are: How exactly are mistakes handled? And, is there a way for the user to correct the problem? The answers will beleft up to the individual application. In life we are used to other people being unpredictable,but with computers, at least in theory, we expect things to work the same every time.Yet another issue is that these simple solutions may not scale well. If the underlying unstructureddata changes can the algorithms be changed quickly enough? This is always an issue with things that sit ontop of other things without an API. Of course, if more web sites had APIs, as we have previously suggested, the top-down semantic web would be much easier and more certain.ConclusionWhile the original vision of the semantic web is grandiose and inspiring in practice it has beendifficult to achieve because of the engineering, scientific and business challenges. The lack of specificand simple consumer focus makes it mostly an academic exercise. In the mean time, existing data is being leveraged by applying simple heuristics and making assumptions about particular verticals.What we have dubbed top-down semantic web applications have been appearing online and improvingend user experiences by leveraging semantics to deliver real, tangible services.Will the bottom-up semantic web ever happen? Possibly. But, at the moment the precise path to get there is not quite clear.In the mean time, we can all enjoy better online experience and get to where we need to go faster thanks tosimple top-down semantic web services.center_img While some of us think that building AI is cool, the majority of people think that AI is a little bit silly, or perhaps even unsettling.And they are right. AI for the sake of AI does not make any sense. If we are talking about buildingintelligent machines, and if we need to spend money and energy annotating all the information inthe world for them, then there needs to be a very clear benefit.Stated the way it is, the semantic web becomes a vision in search of a reason. What if the problem was restatedfrom the consumer point of view? Here is what we are really looking forward to with the semantic web: Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Earlier this week we wrote about the classic approach to the semantic web and the difficulties with that approach. While the original vision of the layeron top of the current web, which annotates information in a way that is “understandable” by computers, is compelling; there are technical, scientific and business issues that have been difficult to address. One of the technicaldifficulties that we outlined was the bottom-up nature of the classic semantic web approach. Specifically,each web site needs to annotate information in RDF, OWL, etc. in order for computers to be able to “understand” it.As things stand today, there is little reason for web site owners to do that. The tools that would leveragethe annotated information do not exist and there has not been any clearly articulated business and consumer value. Which means that there isno incentive for the sites to invest money into being compatible with the semantic web of the future. When we think of people, we also think about a handful of things: birthday, where do they live, how we’re related to them, etc.The profiles found on popular social networks are great examples of simple semantics based around people: In other words, Spock takes simple, everyday semantics about people and applies it to the informationthat already exists online. The result? A unique and useful vertical search engine for people. Further, note that Spockdoes not require the information to be re-annotated in RDF and OWL. Instead, the company builds adapters thatuse heuristics to get the data. The engine does not actually have full understanding of semantics about people, however.For example, it does not know that people like different kindsof ice cream, but it doesn’t need to. The point is that by focusing on a simple semantics, Spock is able to delivera useful end-user service.Another, much simpler, example is the Map+ add-on for Firefox. This application recognizesaddresses and provides a map popup using Yahoo! Maps. It is the simplicity of this application thatprecisely conveys the power of simple semantics. The add-on “knows” what addresses look like. Sure,sometimes it makes mistakes, but most of the time it tags addresses in online documents properly. So it leverages existing informationand then provides direct end user utility by meshing it up with Yahoo! Maps. A consumer focus and clear benefit for businesses needs to be there in order for the semantic webvision to be embraced by the marketplace.What If The Problem Is Not That Hard?If all we are trying to do is to help people improve their online experiences, perhapsthe full “understanding” of semantics by computers is not even necessary. The best online search tool todayis Google, which is an algorithm based, essentially, on statistical frequency analysis and notsemantics. Solutions that attempt to improve Google by focusing on generalized semantics have so far not been findingit easy to do so.The truth is that the understanding of natural language by computers is a really hard problem. We have the languageingrained in our genes. We learn language as we grow up. We learn things iteratively. We have the chance toclarify things when we do not understand them. None of this is easily replicated with computers.But what if it is not even necessary to build the first generation of semantic tools? What if instead of trying to teach computers natural language, we hard-wired into computers the conceptsof everyday things like books, music, movies, restaurants, stocks and even people. Would that help usbe more productive and find things faster?Simple Semantics: Nouns And VerbsWhen we think about a book we think about handful of things – title and author, maybe genre and the year it waspublished. Typically, though, we could care less about the publisher, edition and number of pages. Similarly, recipes provokethoughts about cuisine and ingredients, while movies make us think about the plot, director, and stars. Books, people, recipes, movies are all examples of nouns. The things that we do on the web around thesenouns, such as looking up similar books, finding more people who work for the same company, getting morerecipes from the same chef and looking up pictures of movie stars, are similar to verbs in everyday language.These are contextual actuals that are based on the understanding of the noun.What if semantic applications hard-wired understanding and recognition of the nounsand then also hard-wired the verbs that make sense? We are actually well on our waydoing just that. Vertical search engines like Spock, Retrevo, ZoomInfo, the page annotating technology from Clear Forrest,Dapper, and the Map+ extension for Firefox are just a few examples of top-down semantic web services.The Top-Down Semantic Web ServiceThe essence of a top-down semantic web service is simple – leverage existing web information,apply specific, vertical semantic knowledge and then redeliver the results via a consumer-centric application.Consider the vertical search engine Spock, which scans the web for information about people.It knows how to recognize names in HTML pages and it also looks for common information about people that all people have –birthdays, locations, marital status, etc. In addition, Spock “understands” that people relate to each other.If you look up Bush, then Clinton will show up as a predecessor. If you look up Steve Jobs, then Bill Gateswill come up as a rival.last_img read more

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Man City racks up record 15th straight league win

first_imgThe Fatted Calf and Ayutthaya: New restos worth the drive to Tagaytay Wayne Rooney scored Everton’s goal in a 1-0 win at Newcastle as the Merseyside club continued its resurgence under new manager Sam Allardyce, with the team winning three of his four matches in charge.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims NO CITY HANGOVERThree days after beating Manchester United, there was no derby hangover from City.This was one of City’s most dominant displays yet, highlighting the gulf between the league’s first and last teams.“At times it was horrible, seeing my side trying but suffering for long periods,” Swansea manager Paul Clement said. “It was hard to watch at times because they were so dominant. For me, one of the best sides I’ve ever come across.”ADVERTISEMENT Aurier appeared to be aiming for a teammate in the area when he sent the ball over from the right wing. It ended up finding the top corner of the net.Son’s 87th-minute goal came when his header from Christian Eriksen’s cross flew in off Brighton midfielder Davy Propper.BLANKS FOR LIVERPOOL, ARSENALLiverpool and Arsenal were held to draws for the second time in four days to drop further behind the Premier League’s pace-setters.Liverpool had a late goal disallowed against West Brom, with Dominic Solanke ruled to have touched the ball with his hand after chesting down a cross from fellow substitute Joe Gomez.The Reds were fourth heading into the midweek round of games but have dropped to fifth place, a point clear of an Arsenal team that is now winless in three games.Arsene Wenger’s side dominated for long spells against West Ham at the Olympic Stadium but nearly ended up losing after Javier Hernandez hit the crossbar with a shot in the last minute.Arsenal is seventh in the standings.WINS FOR LEICESTER, EVERTONLeicester manager Claude Puel enjoyed his return to Southampton, where he was fired in the offseason, as his new team won 4-1 thanks to goals by Shinji Okazaki (2), Riyad Mahrez and Andy King. After 30 years, Johnlu Koa still doing ‘hard-to-make’ quality breads Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games David Silva ran the game from midfield and scored a goal in each half at Liberty Stadium, with City manager Pep Guardiola describing the Spain playmaker as an “animal.”“We cannot disguise his quality but in the past he didn’t score too much goals,” Guardiola said. “He’s sharp, he’s in an amazing condition.”Silva’s second goal — City’s third — was the highlight after he swapped passes with Raheem Sterling before chipping the goalkeeper.UNITED BOUNCES BACKRomelu Lukaku ended a four-game run without scoring in the league to help United bounce back from the damaging loss to City on Sunday.It was timely for the striker, who was at fault for both of City’s goals in the derby before squandering a close-range chance late on.Lukaku headed in the only goal after 25 minutes on a night of heavy rain and sleet at Old Trafford. Substitute Marcus Rashford later hit the bar but United needed goalkeeper David de Gea to make a string of fine saves to preserve the lead.LUCKY GOALTottenham will be the next team to try to end Man City’s unbeaten start to the season, and heads into Saturday’s game at Etihad Stadium on the back of two straight wins.After thrashing Stoke 5-1, Spurs got past Brighton thanks to a lucky 40th-minute goal by Serge Aurier and Son Heung-min’s sixth goal in seven starts. MOST READ MRT 7 on track for partial opening in 2021 LATEST STORIEScenter_img Manchester City’s David Silva, centre, scores his side’s first goal of the game against Swansea City, during their English Premier League soccer match at the Liberty Stadium in Swansea, England, Wednesday Dec. 13, 2017. (Nick Potts/PA via AP)Another win, another record for rampant Premier League leader Manchester City.And this one might be the most impressive of the lot.ADVERTISEMENT By beating Swansea 4-0 on Wednesday, City racked up its 15th straight victory — a feat never achieved in the 129-year history of England’s top division.Second-place Manchester United also won, beating Bournemouth 1-0 through Romelu Lukaku’s goal to keep the gap at the top to 11 points, but chasing down its cross-town rival looks to be a forlorn hope at this rate.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingCity is unbeaten after 17 games and has now scored 52 goals, the latest coming at Liberty Stadium through David Silva (2), Kevin De Bruyne and Sergio Aguero against last-place Swansea.With Liverpool held 0-0 at home by West Bromwich Albion for a second straight draw at Anfield, Tottenham climbed back into fourth place — the final Champions League qualifying spot — thanks to a 2-0 win over Brighton. Jordan delivers on promise: 2 Cobra choppers now in PH Malditas save PH from shutout Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Froome says ‘he broke no rules’ after ‘adverse’ Vuelta drugs test Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

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Shahid Afridi wants to reclaim fastest ODI ton record during World Cup

first_imgShahid Afridi held the record for the fastest one-day hundred for nearly 17 yearsAll-rounder Shahid Afridi said he will try to wrest back the record of scoring the fastest ODI hundred when Pakistan tours New Zealand and during the World Cup to make it a memorable farewell for him and his fans from 50 overs cricket.Afridi has announced he will retire from ODIs after the World Cup but continue to play T20 cricket. “You never plan out to set such records. It just happens when you have a very special day and your confidence is sky high. If everything works out for me and it is my special day than I will try to improve the record set by Ab de Villers in New Zealand or in the World Cup,” Afridi said.He said that he was happy to see a batsman of de Villiers caliber now hold the record for the fastest fifty and century in ODIs.”He played like a champion to get the record and it was his special day,” he said.Afridi held the record for the fastest one-day hundred for nearly 17 years after blasting 102 off 37 balls against Sri Lanka in Nairobi. His record was bettered by New Zealand’s Corey Anderson in 2013 in Queenstown against the West Indies by just one ball.South African de Villiers improved upon the record against the Windies last week scoring a century from just 31 balls.Afridi said he had never dreamed he could get a ODI hundred in 37 balls when he played in the tri-series in Nairobi in 1996.advertisement”It just happened that day it was my special day and everything clicked. I hope I get another special day in the coming World Cup if it can happen I will try to get back the record of which I was always proud.”But realistically speaking I know that at the number I come to bat at these days one can score a half century but it is really difficult to get a hundred but you never know it could my special day,” he said.Afridi known as “Boom Boom” for his power hitting once hit a hundred against India from 45 balls in Kanpur in 2005.The seasoned allrounder, around whom they are a lot of expectations in the World Cup, said he would not be surprised if a day came when even chasing down totals of 350 or 400 would become a norm in 50 overs cricket.”After the rule changes in 50 overs cricket and with the popularity of T20 cricket things are now tilted in the favor of batsmen and in coming days we could see even totals of 400 go down easily,” he said.”Limited overs cricket has really changed dramatically in the last couple of years.”last_img read more

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