7/08/2013

SURFER CONTOURING AND SURFACE MAPPING

Surfer contouring and surface mapping software



Surfer 11 was released July 11, 2012. Click on New Features in the column on the left for details about the new features, including unicode support for international alphabets, watershed calculation, labeling data and map attributes, interactive map profiles, measuring distance and bearing, polyline to polygon conversion, XLSX support, import and export new file formats including vector GeoPDF, and more.
Watch the videos.


Surfer is a contouring and 3D surface mapping software program that runs under Microsoft Windows. The Surfersoftware quickly and easily converts your data into outstanding contour, surface, wireframe, vector, image, shaded relief, and post maps. Virtually all aspects of your maps can be customized to produce exactly the presentation you want using Surfer's software tools. Producing publication quality maps has never been quicker or easier.


http://www.rockware.com/product/overview.php?id=129
Easily create a multitude of map types to visualize your data with Surfer software tools.
Top row left to right: surface map, contour map
Bottom row: shaded relief map, image map, wireframe map  

COGNITIVE COMPUTING

Cognitive computing

Artificial intelligence meets business intelligence


What is cognitive computing?


Cognitive computing systems are systems that learn and interact naturally with people to extend what either man or machine could do on their own. They help human experts make better decisions by penetrating the complexity of Big Data.
Big Data is increasing in volume, speed and uncertainty. It comes in unstructured forms such as video, image and text. A new type of computing system is needed in order to understand, process and make sense of it.
Cognitive computers are not programmed to perform a function or set of tasks; rather, they use artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning algorithms to sense, predict and, in some ways, think. This allows these systems to comprehend and draw insight from Big Data. In order to handle this type of processing, cognitive computers require new hardware innovations in which data processing is distributed throughout the system and memory and processing are more tightly integrated. Eventually, entirely new architectures will be modeled after the way the human brain processes information.
Cognitive computing isn't about the computer becoming the primary expert as much as assisting the human experts. By having deep domain expertise in fields such as healthcare, banking and commerce, and using data visualization techniques, cognitive computing helps humans to solve complex problems and make sense of big data. Cognitive computing systems get smarter the more they are used.
Read chapter one of "Smart Machines: IBM's Watson and the Era of Cognitive Computing" by Director of IBM Research, John E. Kelly III and IBM writer Steve Hamm

Director of IBM Research, John E. Kelly III discusses Watson and cognitive computing with Computer History Museum CEO John Hollar (1:18:23)

Learn more about this new era of cognitive computing (4:46)

IBM Watson: The Science Behind an Answer (6:43)

IBM Watson: The Face of Watson (5:26)

Announcing the IBM Watson Engagement Advisor (0:58)

Memorial Sloan-Kettering and IBM Watson to Advance Cancer Care (2:08)
The first cognitive computing system: Watson
The first cognitive computer was Watson, which debuted in a televised Jeopardy! challenge where it bested the show’s two greatest champions. The challenge for Watson was to answer questions posed in every nuance of natural language, such as puns, synonyms and homonyms, slang, and jargon.
Watson was not connected to the Internet for the match. It only knew what it had amassed through years of persistent interaction and learning from a large set of unstructured knowledge. Using machine learning, statistical analysis and natural language processing to find and understand the clues in the questions, Watson then compared possible answers, by ranking its confidence in their accuracy, and responded – all in about three seconds.
Newer generations of Watson are currently being trained in oncology diagnosis for healthcare professionals, and in customer service as a support representative.
At Cleveland Clinic, Watson is partnering with medical students using a visualization technology called Watson Paths
IBM Journal of Research and Development: This is Watson

Domain expertise
Unlike expert systems of the past which required rules to be hard coded into a system by a human expert, cognitive computers can process natural language and unstructured data and learn by experience, much in the same way we do. While they’ll have deep domain expertise, instead of replacing human experts, cognitive computers will act as a decision support system and help them make decisions, whether in healthcare, finance or customer service.

How machine learning can identify financial fraud cases

Using voice recognition to detect and provide treatment for dementia

Overview of the SyNAPSE project (5:16)
From programmable computers to cognitive computers
Computers today are just very large, very fast number crunchers and information manipulators. They can process lots of data, but they really don’t think. They’ve all adhered to the Von Neumann model, a method of constructing a computer by separating memory and processing and calculating a series of "if X then do Y" equations that have been prewritten.
Cognitive computing bypasses some elements of the Von Neumann model by drawing inspiration from the human brain. Humans can do things in parallel - memory and processing are intimately intertwined and there’s no program telling us what to do - all because of the way our brains are configured. In fact the human brain can perform complex tasks rapidly and accurately using the same amount of energy as a 20 watt light bulb in a space equivalent to a 2 liter soda bottle. It’s these functions and capabilities of the human brain that will enable cognitive computing.
IBM scientists are working on a project called SyNAPSE to reproduce the structure and architecture of the brain—the way neurons receive sensory input, connect to each other, adapt these connections, and transmit mental and motor output. The goal is to model computing systems that emulate the brain's computing efficiency, size and power usage without being programmed.

Computers that can sense the natural world
Even with the processing power and algorithms to make sense of a large volume of unstructured data, computers need a way to interact with the natural world to consume that raw data. Image recognition and speech recognition give computers the eyes and ears to understand our world. Through computer vision, natural language processing and text mining they process what they see and hear, allowing them to extract meaning and decode human expression.

Communicating complexity
Our brains are amazing – but when faced with processing an ever growing barrage of data surrounding us, our capacity suddenly seems very finite. Cognitive computing can help push those boundaries of human cognition. By using visual analytics and data visualization techniques, cognitive computers can display data in a visually compelling way that enlightens humans and helps them make decisions based on data. The same image recognition and speech recognition that allows a computer to make sense of unstructured data also allows it to interact more seamlessly with humans. It provides a feedback loop for machines and man to learn from and teach one another.

NANORODS TO DEFEAT FORGERY

Nanorods take down counterfeiters 

IBM scientists create nano-sized patterns to thwart forgeries
Last year, Operation Holiday Hoax II by the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement unit netted 327,000 counterfeit items worth about $76.8 million1. The six-week sting that ended in mid-December seized all types of counterfeit goods including handbags, technology products and wallets.
The holiday season is prime time for counterfeiters looking to lure last-minute holiday shoppers with unbelievable deals, particularly on luxury goods. Although advances in technology for identifying authentic products, such as 3D holograms and electronic chips, have made it easier to identify fraudulent products, counterfeiters continue to keep pace, often by reverse engineering the theft-prevention techniques so their knock-off goods appear to be real.
IBM Research scientists in Zurich, however, have devised a new way to combat counterfeiting by bringing the technology to an entirely different scale — nano.
Earlier this year IBM scientists published a paper with the renowned university ETH Zurich demonstrating how they could precisely position gold nanorods, which measure 25 by 80 nanometers, on a surface using a simple printing process. As a point of comparison, the head of a pin is about 1 million nanometers wide.
In the demonstration they recreated the famous German Ampelmännchen®, which is known to Berliners and tourists alike, as it is featured on all crosswalk lights to help pedestrians cross the street. Except this version of the Ampelmännchen® was roughly 2,500 times smaller.
Scientists from IBM Research and ETH Zurich, arranged gold nanorods to display the STOP Ampelmann, which is 50 μm × 60 μm in size
IBM scientist Dr. Heiko Wolf explains: "We used the surface tension of water and a nano-sized template to orient the nanorods, which can then be printed on any surface using a nanoprinting process — similar to an old letterpress machine. We can then create any pattern, such as a corporate logo or a serial number, at the nanoscale to prevent counterfeiting." Unlike other technologies, it's impossible to reverse engineer.
IBM scientists have also patented a related nano-patterning technique using fluorescent spheres made of polystyrene, the same material used in coffee cups and packaging materials.
Heiko explains, "In addition to using nanorods, we can also create patterns using fluorescent spheres which emit red, green and blue light. What makes this particularly interesting is that they add another level of security, in that the order of the colors in which they arrange themselves is completely random. So not even I could replicate the pattern. We call it a physically unclonable function or PUF."
Both techniques can be used in conjunction to prevent the forgery of any high-end product, including diamonds, watches, famous works of art or even passports or priceless documents. Once the nanopattern is applied to a product or good, it can be viewed under an optical microscope to verify its authenticity.
IBM scientists are currently looking for opportunities to test the technique and believe it can be readily available in the consumer market within the next five years.

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Learn how IBM is helping cities fight crime
View additional images
IBM Research - Zurich

Heiko Wolf
Research Staff Member,
IBM Research - Zurich
1 Knockoff: The Deadly Trade in Counterfeit Goods

BREAKING THE BACTERIA BARRIER

BREAKING THE BACTERIA BARRIER


Breaking the bacteria barrier 
New hydrogel born from semiconductor research may help save lives
We are obsessed with cleanliness. From anti-bacterial cart wipes at the supermarket to individual sized packages of wipes and gels that we can carry in a pocket or a purse - you'd think we were winning in the war against germs.
But in hospitals, clinics and other medical facilities, the potential for infection still exists. Despite advanced sterilization and aseptic techniques, infections associated with medical devices and surfaces have not been eradicated, thanks to the increase in drug-resistant bacteria.
According to the CDC, antibiotic drug resistance in the U.S. costs an estimated $20 billion a year in healthcare costs as well as 8 million additional days spent in the hospital1. And hospital-acquired infections are among the top five leading causes of death in the United States and account for up to $11 billion in healthcare spending each year2.
And while personal anti-bacterial products exist on the market today in the form of the aforementioned hand gels and wipes, these products target very common germs and most contain ethanol as a key ingredient. Ethanol evaporates after a very short time after application and does not provide long-lasting protection.
Cleaning products that effectively destroy bacteria on surfaces, including alcohol and bleach, also break down and/or evaporate after a short period of time and are not transferrable for human application based on their toxicity.
Now imagine a long-lasting substance that is biocompatible and non-toxic, but also biodegradable. A substance that destroys specific types of bacteria but leaves healthy skin and cells alone – one that could be applied to medical facility surfaces, surgical and diagnostic instruments, and even – one day - medical implants.
IBM Research, in association with the Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology in Singapore have taken a first step towards that future with the development of an antimicrobial hydrogel that can break through diseased biofilms and eradicate drug-resistant bacteria upon contact.

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“ We were driven to develop a more effective therapy against superbugs due to the lethal threat of infection by these rapidly mutating microbes and the lack of novel antimicrobial drugs to fight them. Using the inexpensive and versatile polymer materials that we have developed jointly with IBM, we can now launch a nimble, multi-pronged attack on drug-resistant biofilms which would help to improve medical and health outcomes. ”
Dr Yi-Yan Yang, Group Leader, Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology, Singapore
It began with computer chips
The IBM nanomedicine polymer program began in IBM Research labs only four years ago with the mission to improve human health.
The program itself stems from decades of materials development traditionally used for semiconductor technologies. In earlier chip development research, IBM researchers identified specific materials that, when chained together, produced an electrostatic charge that allows microscopic etching on a wafer to be done at a much smaller scale.
This newfound knowledge that characterization of materials could be manipulated at the atomic level to control their movement inspired the team to see what else they could do with these new kinds of polymer structures. They started with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).
The outcome of that experiment was the creation of what are now playfully known as "ninja polymers" – sticky nanostructures that move quickly to target infected cells in the body, destroy the harmful content inside, and can then disappear by biodegrading without causing damaging side effects or accumulating in the organs. As a bonus, all of this occurs without damaging healthy cells in the area.
The next step was to figure out how to apply this new capability to other applications to help fight harmful bacteria.
On the left is a mature and healthy MRSA biofilm. After the hydrogel is applied, the biofilm is destroyed as seen on the right. Photo Credit: IBN

Zipping molecules and zapping bacteria
Through the precise tailoring of polymers, researchers were able to create macromolecules - molecular structures containing a large number of atoms - which combine water solubility, a positive charge, and biodegradability. When mixed with water and heated to normal body temperature, the polymers self-assemble, swelling into a synthetic gel that is easy to manipulate.
“ This is a fundamentally different approach to fighting drug-resistant biofilms. When compared to capabilities of modern-day antibiotics and hydrogels, this new technology carries immense potential. This new technology is appearing at a crucial time as traditional chemical and biological techniques for dealing with drug-resistant bacteria and infectious diseases are increasingly problematic. ”
James Hedrick, Advanced Organic Materials Scientist, IBM Research
This capability stems from internal reactions that create a molecular "zipper" effect. Similar to how zipper teeth link together, the short segments on the new polymers interlock, thickening the water-based solution into moldable and highly malleable hydrogels.
When applied to contaminated surfaces, the hydrogel's positive charge attracts negatively charged microbial membranes, like stars and planets being pulled into a black hole. However, unlike other antimicrobials that target the internal machinery of bacteria to try to prevent it from replicating, this hydrogel destroys the bacteria by rupturing the bacteria’s membrane, rendering it completely unable to regenerate or spread.
The hydrogel developed by the team is comprised of more than 90 percent water, making it easy to handle and apply to surfaces. It also makes it potentially viable for eventual inclusion in applications like creams or injectable therapeutics for wound healing, implant and catheter coatings, skin infections or even orifice barriers. It is the first-ever to be biodegradable, biocompatible and non-toxic, potentially making it an ideal tool to combat serious health hazards facing hospital workers, visitors and patients.
By preventing infections before they happen, doctors, hospitals, patients and healthcare providers may one day all benefit from improved medical outcomes and lower healthcare costs. This jointly developed hydrogel may be a key that helps open that door to the future.
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IBM Research produces staph-killing polymers that leave healthy cells alone
Research originally published in the Angewandte Chemie International Edition of the Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker
View more hydrogel images and videos
Meet the researchers

Dan Coady
Polymer Chemist,
IBM Research - Almaden

Amanda Engler
Post Doctoral Researcher,
IBM Research - Almaden

James Hedrick
Advanced Organic Materials,
IBM Research - Almaden
1 U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: Hospital-acquired infections dramatically increase trauma patients' risk of in-hospital death and hospital stay
2 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Antimicrobial Resistance Posing Growing Health Threat

6/21/2013

EAR BALANCING - INNER DISORDER

OUR  STOMACH  NEEDS  FOOD  TO  SURVIVE  AND OUR  BRAIN  NEEDS  INFORMATION(BRAIN FOOD)  TO  MAKE  THE  EXISTENCE  MEANINGFUL  .

HELPING TO RESTORE BALANCE AFTER INNER EAR DISORDER
Study makes first attempts to design and test a vestibular prosthesis to help restore balance for those with Meniere’s disease
Many disorders of the inner hear which affect both hearing and balance can be hugely debilitating and are currently largely incurable. Cochlear implants have been used for many years to replace lost hearing resulting from inner ear damage. However, to date, there has not been an analogous treatment for balance disorders resulting from inner ear disease. One potential new treatment is an implantable vestibular prosthesis which would directly activate the vestibular nerve by electrical stimulation. This prosthetic treatment is tested in a new study by Christopher Phillips and his colleagues from the University of Washington in Seattle, USA. Their findings are published in the Springer journal Experimental Brain Research.
Meniere’s disease is a disorder of the inner ear that can affect hearing and balance to varying degrees. The characteristic symptoms are episodes of vertigo, tinnitus, a feeling of pressure in the ears and hearing loss which tends to worsen as time goes on. Although there is medication which can help once an attack is underway, there is currently no long-term therapy which can resolve the disease completely.
Phillips and his colleagues have developed a vestibular prosthesis which delivers electrical stimulation to the fluid inside the semi-circular canals of the ear. In effect, the stimulation of the fluid makes the brain believe that the body is moving or swaying in a certain direction. This then causes a compensatory postural reflex to stabilize the posture thereby helping to restore balance.
For their study, this prosthesis was inserted into the ears of four subjects all suffering from long-term Meniere’s disease and differing degrees of hearing loss which was resistant to other management strategies. After a full evaluation of each participant’s vestibular function, their eye function was measured in response to electrical stimulation along with their postural response both with their eyes open and closed.
The researchers found that electrical stimulation of the fluid in the semicircular canals of the affected ear did result in a change in posture, the direction of which was dependent on which ear was stimulated. However, each subject had different sway responses to the stimulation given. The authors believe this could be caused by small differences in the location of the electrode between subjects. Thus fine tuning and individual calibration for each electrode implant would be required for it to be effective.
Overall the results illustrate that this type of prosthesis may eventually be a possible treatment for balance issues caused by Meniere’s disease. However, there are a large number of matters which would need resolving before it is ready for use. The lack of consistency in direction and magnitude of sway response would require further study to ensure that any prosthesis developed could give reliable results for different individuals.
The authors conclude: “Taken together, our findings support the feasibility of a vestibular prosthesis for the control of balance and illustrate new challenges for the development of this technology. This study is a first step in that direction.”
Reference:

Phillips, C. et al. (2013). Postural responses to electrical stimulation of the vestibular end organs in human subjects. Experimental Brain Research; DOI 10.1007/s00221-013-3604-3

6/15/2013

TOBACCO FACTS AND FIGURES

        LET ME SHARE THE FOLLOWING FOR YOUR 

                              INFORMATION


PLEASE READ THIS AND PLEDGE TO FIGHT AGAINST THIS IF YOU ARE HUMAN


Tobacco Facts and Figures
 Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable illness and death in the United States. It causes many different cancers as well as chronic lung diseases such as emphysema and bronchitis, heart disease, pregnancy-related problems, and many other serious health problems.

Who smokes?
Each day, more than 3,600 people under 18 smoke their first cigarette, and more than 900 begin smoking on a daily basis.
In 2011, an estimated 19 percent of U.S. adults were cigarette smokers.
Nearly 20% of high school students smoke cigarettes.
In 2011, nearly 18% of high school boys were current cigar users.
From 2005 to 2011, the proportion of adult smokers declined from 20.9% to 19.0%.

Why is smoking harmful to smokers?
Cigarette smoking causes an estimated 443,000 deaths each year, including approximately 49,400 deaths due to exposure to secondhand smoke.
8.6 million people live with a serious illness caused by smoking.
On average, smokers die 13 to 14 years earlier than nonsmokers.
Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death among both men and women in the United States, and 90% of lung cancer deaths among men and approximately 80% of lung cancer deaths among women are due to smoking.
Smoking causes many other types of cancer, including cancers of the throat, mouth, nasal cavity, esophagus, stomach, pancreas, kidney, bladder, and cervix, as well as acute myeloid leukemia.
People who smoke are up to two to four times more likely to suffer a heart attack than nonsmokers, and the risk increases with the number of cigarettes smoked. Smoking also causes most cases of chronic obstructive lung disease.
Among youth who persist in smoking, a third will die prematurely from smoking.


Why is smoking harmful to others?
An estimated 88 million nonsmoking Americans, including 54% of children aged 3–11 years, are exposed to secondhand smoke.
Nonsmokers who are exposed to secondhand smoke at home or work increase their lung cancer risk by 20–30%.
Nonsmokers who are exposed to secondhand smoke at home or work increase their heart disease risk by 25–30%.
Each year, primarily because of exposure to secondhand smoke, an estimated 3,000 nonsmoking Americans die of lung cancer, and more than 46,000 die of heart disease.
Children are at particular risk for exposure to secondhand smoke: 53.6% of young children (aged 3–11 years) were exposed to secondhand smoke in 2007–2008.
While only 5.4% of adult nonsmokers in the United States lived with someone who smoked inside their home, 18.2% of children (aged 3–11 years) lived with someone who smoked inside their home in 2007–2008.
Babies and children who breathe secondhand smoke are sick more often with bronchitis, pneumonia, and ear infections.
In children, secondhand smoke causes:
o Ear infections
o More frequent and severe asthma attacks
o Respiratory issues, including coughing, sneezing, and shortness of breath
o Respiratory infections, including bronchitis and pneumonia
o An increased risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)
In children aged 18 months and younger in the United States, secondhand smoke exposure is responsible for:
o 150,000–300,000 new cases of bronchitis and pneumonia annually
o Approximately 7,500–15,000 hospitalizations annually


Who uses smokeless tobacco?
15% of high school boys use smokeless tobacco, and an estimated 9% of all high school students use smokeless tobacco.
3.5% of all adults use smokeless tobacco.
Among the 50 states and DC, smokeless tobacco use was highest in Wyoming (9.1%), West Virginia (8.5%), and Mississippi (7.5%).
In all 50 states and DC, smokeless tobacco use was significantly higher among men than women; smokeless tobacco use among men ranged from 2.0% (DC) to 17.1% (West Virginia).
Data suggests that men, young adults (aged 18–24 years), and those with a high school education or less are more likely to use smokeless tobacco.



How is smokeless tobacco harmful?
Smokeless tobacco contains 28 cancer-causing agents (carcinogens).
Smokeless tobacco is a known cause of cancer; it causes oral and pancreatic cancer.
Smokeless tobacco is also strongly associated with leukoplakia—a precancerous lesion of the soft tissue in the mouth that consists of a white patch or plaque that cannot be scraped off.
Smokeless tobacco is associated with recession of the gums, gum disease, and tooth decay.
Smokeless tobacco use during pregnancy increases the risks for preeclampsia (i.e., a condition that may include high blood pressure, fluid retention, and swelling), premature birth, and low birth weight.
Smokeless tobacco use by men causes reduced sperm count and abnormal sperm cells.
Smokeless tobacco contains nicotine, and using it leads to nicotine addiction and dependence.
Adolescents who use smokeless tobacco are more likely to become cigarette smokers.


We Can Make the Next Generation Tobacco-Free
 2012 Surgeon General's report details important new information about tobacco use among youth and young adults, the causes, and the solutions. Learn how we can work together to end the tobacco epidemic.
Surgeon General's reports (SGRs) on tobacco are among the most credible and respected reviews of current data in all of science. Dr. Regina M. Benjamin, U.S. Surgeon General, has just released Preventing Tobacco Use Among Youth and Young Adults: A Report of the Surgeon General,which is the 31st SGR on tobacco produced by CDC since 1964.
This latest report details important new facts about the epidemic of tobacco use among youth ages 12 through 17 and young adults ages 18 through 25, including the epidemiology, causes, and health effects of this tobacco use and interventions proven to prevent it.
Tobacco Use Among Young People
We've made progress in reducing tobacco use among youth; however, far too many young people are still using tobacco. Today, more than 600,000 middle school students and 3 million high school students smoke cigarettes. Rates of decline for cigarette smoking have slowed in the last decade, and rates of decline for smokeless tobacco use have stalled completely. In addition:
Every day, more than 1,200 people in this country die due to smoking. For each of those deaths, at least two youth or young adults become regular smokers each day. Almost 90% of those replacement smokers smoke their first cigarette by age 18.
Rates of smokeless tobacco use are no longer declining and appear to be increasing among some groups.
Cigars, especially cigarette-sized cigars, are popular with youth. One out of five male high school students smokes cigars, and cigar use appears to be increasing among other groups.
Use of multiple tobacco products, including cigarettes, cigars, and smokeless tobacco, is common among young people.
Prevention efforts must focus on young adults ages 18 through 25. Almost no one starts smoking after age 25. Nearly 9 out of 10 smokers started smoking by age 18, and 99% started by age 26. Progression from occasional to daily smoking almost always occurs by age 26.
Immediate and Long-Term Damage
 Tobacco use by youth and young adults causes both immediate and long-term damage. One of the most serious health effects is nicotine addiction, which prolongs tobacco use and can lead to severe health consequences. The younger that youth are when they start using tobacco, the more likely they'll be addicted. Other stark facts include the following:
Early cardiovascular damage is seen in most young smokers; those most sensitive die very young.
Smoking reduces lung function and retards lung growth. Teens who smoke are not only short of breath today—they may end up as adults whose lungs will never grow to full capacity. Such damage is permanent and increases the risk for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Youth are sensitive to nicotine and can feel dependent earlier than adults. Because of nicotine addiction, about three out of four teen smokers end up smoking into adulthood, even if they intend to quit after a few years.
Among youth who persist in smoking, a third will die prematurely from smoking.
Social and Environmental Influences
Youth are vulnerable to social and environmental influences to use tobacco; messages and images that make tobacco use appealing to them are everywhere. In addition:
Young people want to fit in with their peers. Images in tobacco marketing make tobacco use look appealing to this age group.
Youth and young adults see smoking in their social circles, movies they watch, video games they play, Web sites they visit, and many communities where they live. Smoking is often portrayed as a social norm, and young people exposed to these images are more likely to smoke.
Youth identify with peers they see as social leaders and may imitate their behavior. Those youth whose friends or siblings smoke are more likely to smoke.
Youth who are exposed to images of smoking in movies are more likely to smoke. Those who get the most exposure to onscreen smoking are about twice as likely to begin smoking as those who get the least exposure. Images of smoking in movies have declined over the past decade; however, in 2010, nearly a third of top-grossing movies produced for children—those with ratings of G, PG, or PG-13—contained images of smoking.
Tobacco Industry Activities
Tobacco companies spend more than $1 million an hour in this country alone to market their products. This report concludes that tobacco product advertising and promotions still entice far too many young people to start using tobacco.
The tobacco industry has stated that its marketing only promotes brand choices among adult smokers. Regardless of intent, this marketing encourages underage youth to smoke. Nearly 9 out of 10 smokers start smoking by age 18, and more than 80% of underage smokers choose brands from among the top three most heavily advertised.
The more young people are exposed to cigarette advertising and promotional activities, the more likely they are to smoke.
The report finds that extensive use of price-reducing promotions has led to higher rates of tobacco use among young people than would have occurred in the absence of these promotions.
Many tobacco products on the market appeal to youth. Some cigarette-sized cigars contain candy and fruit flavoring, such as strawberry and grape.
Many of the newest smokeless tobacco products do not require users to spit, and others dissolve like mints. These products include snus—a spitless dry snuff packaged in a small teabag-like sachet—and dissolvable strips and lozenges. Young people may find these products appealing in part because they can be used without detection at school or other places where smoking is banned. However, these products cause and sustain nicotine addiction, and many youth who use them also smoke cigarettes.
Using advertising and promotional activities, packaging, and product design, the tobacco industry encourages the myth that smoking makes you thin. This message is especially appealing to young girls. It is not true—teen smokers are not thinner than nonsmokers.
The Value of Multicomponent Programs
Comprehensive, sustained, multicomponent programs can cut youth tobacco use in half in 6 years. To that end:
Prevention is critical. Successful multicomponent programs prevent young people from starting to use tobacco in the first place and more than pay for themselves in lives and health care dollars saved.
Strategies that comprise successful comprehensive tobacco control programs include mass media campaigns, higher tobacco prices, smoke-free laws and policies, evidence-based school programs, and sustained community-wide efforts.
Comprehensive tobacco control programs are most effective when funding for them is sustained at levels recommended by CDC.
Three Key SGR Documents
Please refer to the following materials to obtain more information on preventing tobacco use among youth and young adults.
Full Report
Preventing Tobacco Use Among Youth and Young Adults: A Report of the Surgeon General   is a 900-page document that contains the latest science on the health consequences of tobacco use by young people; the epidemiology of tobacco use among youth and young adults; the social, environmental, cognitive, and genetic influences on the use of tobacco by young people; tobacco industry influences; and efforts to prevent tobacco use by youth and young adults.
Executive Summary
Preventing Tobacco Use Among Youth and Young Adults: A Report of the Surgeon (Executive Summary)    is a 24-page document that summarizes the major content of the report and highlights major conclusions from each of the report's five content chapters.
Consumer Friendly Booklet
Preventing Tobacco Use Among Youth and Young Adults: We CAN Make the Next Generation Tobacco-Free is a 20-page, easy-to-read illustrated booklet that discusses the major content of the SGR in plain language. It is designed to help parents, teachers, policy makers, health care professionals, and other concerned adults understand the importance of the report and how they can take a stand to protect young people from the devastating effects of tobacco use.
Copies of these publications can be downloaded at www.cdc.gov/tobacco. To order copies, go towww.cdc.gov/tobacco and click on the Publications Catalog link.
Surgeon General's Video Contest: "Tobacco—I'm Not Buying It!"
In conjunction with this new SGR, CDC's Office on Smoking and Health has launched a video contest inviting youth ages 13-17 and young adults ages 18-25 to submit original videos featuring one or more of the key findings from the report.
Submissions will be reviewed for eligibility and then judged on the best use and depiction of key messages, recommendations contained in the report, and other criteria listed in the rules. CDC will award a $1,000 grand prize and three $500 runner-up prizes for each of the following categories (English and Spanish language submissions in both age-based groups) for a total of $10,000 in prizes. Video submission deadline is April 20, 2012. Visit Challenge.gov  for a complete list of contest rules. Also visit the Surgeon General's Spotlight Facebook tab  on CDC Tobacco Free. 
Help to Quit
For free information and help to quit tobacco use, visit www.smokefree.gov ,http://women.smokefree.gov/  or call 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669;
TTY 1-800-332-8615). Also refer to the National Cancer Institute's new smoke-free teen initiative, teen.smokefree.gov .
More Information
CDC's Smoking & Tobacco Use Web site
Surgeon General Reports on Smoking and Tobacco Use
Office of the Surgeon General Web site 
CDC works 24/7 saving lives and protecting people from health threats to have a more secure nation. A US federal agency, CDC helps make the healthy choice the easy choice by putting science and prevention into action. CDC works to help people live longer, healthier and more productive lives.

5/24/2013

BRAIN STORMS


Hai Friends Today I Wish to share something I feel may be a valuable information for you .Please go through this which is self explanatory . THE GAME OF LOST AND FOUND READ THIS .YOU WILL REALLY LOVE IT : By Simon Bain, Simplexo :: We all misplace keys, phones, wallets, etc. Generally, when you lose something, it is only when you need it again that you notice its disappearance. Then, confusion, panic or fear may set in. You search high and low, retrace old steps and rack your brain trying to apply sensible logic to the situation, but often search in the most irrational of places. Did I leave my phone in the refrigerator? All sorts of crazy scenarios go through your head, and then, when you’ve almost lost all hope - success - your keys turn up in the front door. Relief floods over you, bringing a wave of calm and normalcy back into your world. There is nothing more satisfying than basking in the glory of finding something you lost. What happens when you next lose or can’t find your keys? Panic starts to set in, then your brain clicks into gear and remembers. Instead of going through all the emotions as before, you trace the steps back based on previous experiences and presto, no need for panic, you’re filled with a sense of calm having found the lost item. Why is this? Because as humans, we learn. In fact if you think about it our entire life is dictated by searching, because without it we would not be ‘doing’ as most searches invariably lead to some sort of action. But what happens if you substitute something tangible like your keys or wallet, for a document you saved on your computer? We’ve all been there. You open up a word processor app, after searching for the file on the desktop. You then search for the template to use or the toolbar to click on to, or the file open button. All second nature, but what happens when we can’t find the document? As with the keys and wallets, you go through the search and retrieval processes, until the familiar sensation of reward and relief comes over you when you eventually find it. Now if this was to happen again, as mentioned with something tangible, you wouldn't necessarily go through the various processes until you locate the lost item. You've learned your lesson. However, with computer search applications that is not the case. Unlike the human brain, search applications do not have the capability to learn, but this doesn't mean we can’t put processes into place to make search much more friendly and intuitive. A revolution in thinking is here when it comes to search bringing Search 2.0. Let’s take a moment to look at the concept of Advanced Search, which gives the participant a more tailor-made set of results against a request. In practice, this sounds great but we all know that the reality is instead of getting 6,000,000 results you might only get 2,678,988 - not exactly helpful. Imagine however, if a web search only found one result to every query instead of 6,000,000 or 2,678,988, and each answer was exactly what you needed. That is the potential that semantic search technology holds. Is this a nirvana? A mirage? Or is it something we really need to address in the smart device era where users will simply not tolerate having to search through files, folders, emails and the like while they are on the move. The drive for mobility is creating a revolution in search. However, we need to be clear that this revolution not only simplifies the search process, it must do so securely. Online search engines familiar to the average consumer typically deploy so-called Boolean search techniques, in which the key words or phrases the user is looking for must be present in the underlying commands searched for. In Boolean search, the number of results delivered will therefore correspond to the number of instances a particular phrase occurs in the underlying data – in this case the World Wide Web. This is why the name of a popular celebrity such as Lady Gaga retrieves 456,000,000 results when a more obscure example will achieve significantly fewer. The user has to determine which is the best answer to his query. I would call this self-search or self-filtering. When you are on the go this is simply not an option. Semantic search technology, on the other hand, retrieves answers based not on specific words or phrases, but on the overall relevance to the query. It seeks to improve search accuracy by understanding intent and the contextual meaning of terms as they appear in the searchable database, whether on the Web or within a closed system, to generate more relevant results. As developers, we need to put this into practice, otherwise users will remain frustrated and searching will continue to be a huge pain-point. Map against this the need for a secure search application to see the imperative of delivering a 2.0 solution. The benefit for users is clear: accurate information at one’s fingertips as needed either at the desktop, or as is increasingly the case, via smart devices securely and safely while on the move. Businesses embracing this new search culture will benefit from having improved productivity, more effective communication and greater flexibility for employees. There is no doubt that we are now seeing a radical change in the way people work, communicate, interact and by definition, search for information. Smart device penetration is set to continue unabated meaning that relevant, semantic search has to go mobile as well. Now these might only be seen as baby steps, but they are steps in the right direction. The key to success is giving back the user those feelings of satisfaction and relief when finding something that was lost. The current processes are in place do provide this, but as technologists we should be striving to make searching that little bit easier. About the Author: Simon Bain is the company founder, CTO and chief architect of Simplexo Ltd's software solutions.

4/26/2013

FLOWERS TO WISDOM

Hello all ,
              Today i will talk about a term Flowers.

             "Flowers" the word itself is enough to reveal a new world in front of us.If we go to check ,there are a lot of things to say about Flowers .Moreover it could be considered as another name for
        
           .   Beauty
           .   colours
           .   Friendship
           .   Soothness
           .   Happiness
           .   Pleasant Smell
           .   Softness
           .   There are endless terms one can say

      I would detail it later.However i want to tell you about the names of few Flowers.
        ROSES-There are a number of varieties but one thing i want to opine  is that Roses suits all occasions.Do anybody agree.They are requested to follow and comment on it.
        ORCHID - They do not fade easily.
        DALIA - They are consistent
        LILY - Vivid and smooth
        LOTUS - Divine, Floating,with an Openness.
   
Friends, enough stuff for today. Next time we meet to say something More detailed.
                                                          Thank you all and have a nice living.