The Empty Shop is filled with promise

first_imgThe mannequins are clothed daily with the clothes donated for those who would like to buy the clothes for a worthy cause at reasonable prices. (Image: My Joburg)If you are stuck with a cupboard full of clothes you don’t wear anymore, there’s a great way to get rid of them while doing a worthy cause.Sandton City, the upmarket retail mall, and McCann Johannesburg, a brand development agency, have partnered again to bring the global charity initiative, The Empty Shop, to Johannesburg. It’s the second time the campaign is being held; in 2014, it collected over four tons of clothes.CHARITY AND FASHIONFrom 28 October to 15 November, members of the public are encouraged to drop off clothes at the pop-up shop in Sandton City, where the clothes are styled on mannequins for the day before being removed for storage when the day is over.This year, children’s educational toys and books have been added to the collection. On 14 and 15 November, selected items go on sale. People can buy the donated items that catch their eye, at affordable prices.All proceeds, as well as the unsold items, will be donated to the Tomorrow Trust, a non-profit organisation that supports orphaned and vulnerable children throughout their educational journey. Through a holistic education that focuses on academic and life skills, the Tomorrow Trust empowers these youngsters to reach their full potential.“The 2014 Empty Shop project was a phenomenal success and we are very excited to host the initiative for a second time, in partnership with McCann Johannesburg,” said Julie Hilary, the general manager of Sandton City and Nelson Mandela Square.“Through The Empty Shop, we are able to assist people we may never have reached. Last year The Empty Shop collected four tons of clothing, exceeding the 3.2 ton record set by Brazil, which was truly humbling for all involved. To date, more than R600 000 has been raised from the clothing sold at Hospice Wits stores.”The shop concept was pioneered in 2013 at the Villalobos Mall, in São Paulo, Brazil. Other cities that have hosted The Empty Shop include Milan, Berlin, Austin, Manchester, Buenos Aires and Riga.Situated in the Checkers Court in Sandton City, The Empty Shop will open and operate during Sandton City’s trading hours, from Monday to Saturday, from 9am to 8pm, and on Sunday from 9am to 6pm.“The Empty Shop has demonstrated that everyone can play a role, no matter how small, in making a difference,” said Karabo Denalane, the managing director of McCann Johannesburg. “Our vision at McCann is to help brands play a meaningful role in people’s lives, and it’s projects like these that allow us to reach our goal and potential.”last_img read more

Can a Tech Company Build a City? Ask Google

first_imgNet-Zero Cities Aren’t Possible, You Say?Can Rural Living Be As Green As Urban Living? From The New York Times: City of the Future? RELATED ARTICLES No longer ‘us and them’Sidewalk Toronto is being built as a beacon for other cities to follow.The way Sidewalk Labs sees it, the idea that technologists and urbanists can’t get along has to change. The company is integrating urbanists and technologists into its product planning. It’s including residents and workers in beta testing, with a city government giving it social license to operate.Instead of a cartel of architects, urban planners, consultants, developers, and regulators mapping out the future of the city behind closed doors using the standard master planning process, the company will spend US$50 million over the next year to support an open conversation between citizens, governments, universities, and others about what Sidewalk Toronto should be.Sidewalk Labs hosted a community town hall meeting in November, inviting Toronto residents to join the conversation.Sidewalk Labs is building offices across the U.S. It’s recruiting a cavalcade of new product managers, partnership and business development managers, machine-learning specialists, and forward-thinking urbanists.If its aggressive recruitment strategy is anything to go by, Sidewalk Labs is aiming for its tech products — focused on urban disruption, powered by the data it hoovers up from our daily lives — to raise the bar for city-making around the world. Doctoroff describes his desire to expand to other cities as “insatiable.”No doubt there will be lots of ideas that go nowhere. But one thing is clear: Sidewalk Labs is thinking about cities like no other technology company has done before it.Whether it succeeds in actually building one is everybody’s business. By SARAH BARNSSidewalk Labs, the urban innovation startup owned by Google’s parent company Alphabet, has announced a partnership with the City of Toronto to develop a new waterfront precinct. Time to ask Google: Can you build a city?The Quayside precinct, dubbed “Sidewalk Toronto,” is to become a 500-hectare (1,236-acre) sandpit for testing a suite of new tech products. The aim is to radically reimagine the way a city is made. (Further reading: Creative City, Smart City … Whose City Is It?.)Even if only a fraction of the ideas being touted work, Sidewalk Labs will be expanding the possibilities of tech-enabled urbanism to far loftier heights than many run-of-the-mill smart city strategies.Best take note. Any city mildly interested in using technology smarts to improve cities should be paying very close attention. Learning from smart city failuresSidewalk Toronto plans to grow phoenix-like out of the ashes of failed smart cities.Smart cities are based on the idea that cities can be made more liveable, sustainable, and efficient by making better use of information and communications technologies. This idea promises a lot, but so far has failed to deliver much.center_img The biggest failures in the 20-year history of smart cities — notably China’s Dongtan and South Korea’s Songdo — are testament to the hard-boiled truth that good cities can’t be built out of a technology mainframe. Even if they have tech smarts, they haven’t been places people have learned to call home.And, as companies like IBM, Cisco, and Microsoft have learned, it’s not easy to redeploy the large-scale operating systems used by big organizations into complex urban environments.Cities are messy places. They’re a heady mix of privatized utilities, legacy infrastructures, resource-constrained public authorities, and opinionated voting publics. These ingredients have made it hard to sell a data platform that can operate at the scale needed to produce any real efficiency benefits.Instead, what has so far been delivered are cities abounding in prototypes of smart parking and smart lights. More were announced in November under the Australian government’s A$50 million Smart Cities and Suburbs Program. Reimagining cities from the internet upWe have seen very little of the “game-changing” disruption promoted at smart city conferences worldwide. This is also why Sidewalk Labs matters.Led by CEO Dan Doctoroff, who was deputy mayor of New York under Michael Bloomberg, the company is on a mission to “reimagine cities from the internet up.” Crucially, this is Google’s version of the internet — the one you’re most likely occupying most of your waking hours.Instead of trying to sell a clunky operating system that fits legacy infrastructure with new data points, Sidewalk Labs is building products it thinks will change how citizens use the city. And let’s not forget it will own and monetize the data created when people use these products.Rather than upgrading what we have already, the thinking behind Sidewalk Labs is more focused on the core of how people behave in cities.For instance, its parking app, Flow, isn’t just about helping you find an empty parking space, as many smart parking systems do. It introduces a new pricing model that lowers the cost of parking for people who have had to travel farther. And it penalizes those who really should have walked.The point of using sensors to monitor air quality and temperature isn’t just to generate real-time data, which governments may or may not use. It proposes to use the data to create optimized environments that reduce the need for restrictive zoning, allowing for “radical mixed use” zoning.City Block Health, another startup spun out of Sidewalk Labs, is a personalized health system in the U.S. for Medicaid or Medicare members. Presumably, though it’s a bit hard to tell, this will allow these people to be supported across many different (data-driven) interactions as they shop, commute, and go about their daily lives.This is human-centred product design for an era of not just digitally enabled but “Google-powered” citizens.The solutions offered here take in the full span of city regulation, pricing, planning, building, and human interaction. This is not just tinkering at the edges of urban systems with new technology; this is redesigning the system with the technology at the core.Of course, the scope to experiment with and ultimately reshape Google-powered urban behavior is only possible when Sidewalk Labs owns and operates the city space where it can trial its products. This is the premise of Sidewalk Toronto. Sarah Barns is a research fellow at the Institute for Culture and Society at Australia’s Western Sydney University. This post originally appeared at The Conversation.last_img read more

Video: Ohio St’s D’Angelo Russell Shows Off His Ridiculous Dribbling Skills – With A Football

first_imgd'angelo Russell dribbles a football in his gym.d’angelo russell dribble footballD’Angelo Russell can handle a basketball pretty well. The former Ohio State star guard proved this dozens of times during his first-and-only season with the Buckeyes. The future NBA first-round pick had crazy highlight plays like this and this. It turns out that he’s nearly just as good with a football. Russell showed off his handling ability to former Kentucky guard Devin Booker while the two were working out together. Russell is expected to be a top-10 pick in the upcoming NBA Draft, which is set to take place on June 25.last_img read more

Plans scrapped for Frenchlanguage debate in New Brunswick campaign

first_imgFREDERICTON – Plans for a French-language election debate have been scrapped in New Brunswick, with the Liberals and Tories each blaming the other — and even Quebec’s premier expressing disappointment.Radio-Canada Acadie cancelled plans after Progressive Conservative Leader Blaine Higgs said he couldn’t debate in French but another candidate could step in, and the Liberals said they would only be in a debate with the leaders.Denis Robichaud, executive producer with Radio-Canada Acadie, says a number of options were presented, but the Liberals only wanted a leaders’ debate.“The leader of the PC party is not able to debate in French, so that is the first step. We came back with other options, and the main reason why we weren’t able to go with those options is because the Liberal party only wanted a debate that would oppose the leaders,” Robichaud said.Higgs said he’s working hard to learn French, but is not fluent enough to take part in a debate, and can’t understand why the Liberals wouldn’t agree for another candidate to replace him.“I’m prepared to have my teammates speak more eloquently than I can in the French language in order to deliver the message that’s important to all New Brunswickers. We have a message that’s not regionalized, its a message about growth in New Brunswick,” Higgs said.Robichaud said the suggestion of a people’s forum with questions from the public in both English and French drew complaints from various francophone groups who wanted a French-only debate.In a letter to Radio-Canada, the New Brunswick Liberal Association also opposed such a forum.“It is not a debate. Each leader making a statement in response to each question with no interaction with the other leaders prevents New Brunswickers from seeing any contrast between positions and even prevents leaders from being held accountable for their claims by their counterparts,” reads the letter, signed by campaign co-chairs Joan Kingston and Serge Rousselle.Quebec Liberal Premier Philippe Couillard voiced his opinion Friday, saying it’s regrettable that there will be no French-language debate in New Brunswick.“The Acadian community is a major part of francophone Canada. I have agreed, with open arms, to take part in an English-language leaders’ debate so members of the anglophone community also have access to a political debate,” Couillard said.“So I find it regrettable but that is an internal debate for that province.”last_img read more

Quick Hits Ohio State football news and notes

First-year Ohio State head coach Luke Fickell lauded Buckeye Nation’s contribution to Saturday’s win against then-No. 12 Wisconsin and senior running back Daniel “Boom” Herron said he thinks the offense could score 50 points against Indiana (1-8, 0-5) during a Tuesday press conference. Neither addressed the forthcoming decision from the NCAA regarding the football program’s rules violations, though a university spokeman told The Lantern Tuesday that the expected announcement date of the ruling is “hard to predict.” A nod to students Fickell began his remarks by thanking the OSU students and fans for helping create an atmosphere at Ohio Stadium that he said was “unbelievable.” “(I) wouldn’t want to start any other way but to thank the fans, the crowd and the students for an unbelievable atmosphere this weekend,” Fickell said. Fickell said he even needed he wife’s reassurance that the Horseshoe, which held 105,511 fans on Saturday, was as loud as he perceived it. “Sometimes, I had to get in the car afterward, ask my wife to make sure I saw and felt that atmosphere as well as it was,” he said. “I wasn’t sure if it was my heart that was pounding or the screams from the crowd, but it was an unbelievable atmosphere, unbelievable experience, just to be a part of something, obviously a game like that. But that’s what Ohio State football’s all about.” “Signature” win? Not a chance With the 33-29 win against the then-No.12 Badgers Saturday, Fickell clinched his second consecutive win against a ranked opponent. OSU beat then-No.16 Illinois, 17-7, on Oct. 15. Fickell rejected the notion that Saturday’s win was a “signature” win in his young career as a head coach, saying, “Every win is big.” “The way it was won, obviously, maybe that might mean something different, the atmosphere it was won in,” he said. “But still it goes down the same on the schedule — it goes down as a win.” Running the score up on Indiana The Indiana Hoosiers, which have allowed opponents to score 204 points combined in their last four games, could be in for more trouble Saturday. OSU senior running back Daniel “Boom” Herron said he wants the Buckeyes to score 50 points against the Hoosiers. “Yeah, I mean, you gotta look at it that way. Whatever we could do to put points on the board,” Herron said. “I think it’s possible. It’s definitely possible.” All crickets on the NCAA front After its Aug. 12 hearing with the NCAA in Indianapolis regarding the football program’s infractions, the university originally expected the final ruling to arrive sometime during the Buckeyes’ four-game stretch between Oct. 8, when they traveled to Nebraska, and this Saturday’s home game against Indiana. There was no mention Tuesday of the NCAA violations, or when the ruling would be handed down. In a Tuesday email to The Lantern, OSU spokesman Jim Lynch said that since additional violations were considered by the NCAA after the Aug. 12 hearing, “We (OSU and the NCAA) are no longer on the same timetable.” As a result, Lynch said in the email that it is difficult for him to predict when the ruling will be announced. read more

Opinion Cincinnati Reds should trade Aroldis Chapman before its too late

Cincinnati Reds pitcher Aroldis Chapman celebrates the final out in the 9th inning against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park in Miami on July 31. The Reds won, 3-1. Credit: Courtesy of TNSA good closer is a luxury for non-contending teams.Although the 2015 season has just begun, the Cincinnati Reds must seriously consider trading Aroldis Chapman.The flame-throwing left-hander has been a mainstay in the Reds’ bullpen since his major league debut in 2010. Featuring a fastball that routinely reaches the triple digits and a crippling slider, Chapman has established himself as one of the premier late-inning guys in MLB, perhaps only surpassed by Craig Kimbrel, formerly of the Atlanta Braves.Despite the incredible success he’s sustained in Cincinnati, including three All-Star appearances, the Reds must look to move Chapman quickly if they plan on contending in the near future. The Sunday trade between the Braves and San Diego Padres, which moved the equally unhittable Kimbrel to San Diego, should serve as an impetus to get a deal done.Despite his reputation as the best closer in the game, Atlanta could only recoup a modest return for Kimbrel. The Braves had to lower their asking price in order to get the Padres to pick up Melvin Upton Jr.’s massive contract.If the Reds were to try to deal Chapman, their return, in a vacuum, would likely be a little less than what Kimbrel would have fetched. But since this is the MLB, and not a vacuum, the Reds are positioned to reap a bounty.Any one of the teams expected to contend this season would be thrilled to have Chapman’s services, and most would be willing to part with one or two premium prospects in order to get a deal done.With the best closer in the game already on the move, the market has shrunk.  The demand for a dominant stopper like Chapman will not be higher than it is right now.The Reds must move quickly while they have leverage.  Though it would be disappointing for many Cincinnati fans to see the team selling pieces so early in the season, that disappointment would turn into optimism when they see the bounty the Reds obtained in return.Correction: An earlier version of this article stated that Aroldis Chapman pitches right handed, when in fact, he throws left handed. read more