Think Solar Solutions Outdoor Lantern World Band Radio

first_imgSeveral new solar powered items caught my eye. The Discovery Outdoor Lantern has a multi-source power solution for camping and outdoor activities. In a fixed position it becomes an incandescent spotlight. The World Band Solar & Dynamo Powered Radio has a total of four alternative energy sources. It provides access to emergency services and radio frequencies. Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Thinking about alternative energy solutions is not only wise, but it could be a short term emergency necessity. The following products utilize solar power and convert to a standard 12V DC power sources. Discovery Solar Powered Outdoor Lantern:A noteworthy products utilizing solar power is available from the Discovery Store. The Solar Powered Outdoor Lantern runs on a built-in, rechargeable solar battery. The battery may also be recharged using a 12V DC power source. The products isuseful for emergency sources of light or for camping rips and other outdoor uses. The Solar Powered Outdoor Lantern has a 4-watt fluorescent tube that has full circle illumination capability. In a fixed position, the lantern becomes an incandescent spotlight. The lantern has a four hour lighting capacity for a single charge. The lantern comes with a 12V car adaptor. The convenient size 9 inches long by 4.5 inches wide and 4 inches high make it a great accessory for camping and rafting or other outdoor activities. The Solar Powered Lantern weighs less than three pounds. It sells for less than $50 and will be available in early October, 2007.The World Band Solar & Dynamo Powered Radio:The 11 band World Band Solar keeps the user in touch with emergency services, weather, international broadcasts, AM/FM radio and TV stations when a regular power source is unavailable. The World Band Solar & Dynamo Powered Radio comes with a built-in hand generator and a self-contained solar cell for solar charges. It can also be charged from an AC/DC or a car cigarette lighter.The convenient size of the World Band Solar & Dynamo Radio makes it a highly portable device. It measures three inches deep by nine inches wide and less than six inches high. The radio is made with Toshiba components which provides for good quality listening. The item comes with four AA Ni-cad rechargeable batteries. In addition, the radio comes with exclusively designed ear plugs, and an AC/DC plug. The 12 V car charger cable is available, but not included with the radio. The World Band radio will provide seven hours of listening from a single charge. The LED indicator light will forewarn the user when the battery is getting low. The product is definitely a multi-source powered band radio. The product is new on the market and the introductory price is $105 and an additional shipping cost of $12.95. The product is sold on-line by Global Merchants. center_img Citation: Think Solar Solutions: Outdoor Lantern & World Band Radio (2007, October 1) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2007-10-solar-solutions-outdoor-lantern-world.html Detection of spike-like structures near the front of a shock-driven solar radio burstlast_img read more

Campaign to build 1837 Babbages Analytical Engine

Campaign to build 1837 Babbages Analytical Engine

first_imgGraham-Cumming said he was initially worried there would not be enough supporters for building a computer driven by steam, with only 1 k of memory and “13,000 times slower than a ZX81”, but so far over 3,100 people have pledged support and donations of $10/₤10/€10 each to the non-profit Plan 28 campaign. About 50,000 supporters donating a total of around $640,000 are needed by the end of January 2011 to get the project off the ground. If the Engine is built, it will be donated to a museum such as the Science Museum. (PhysOrg.com) — A campaign based in the UK is hoping to construct Charles Babbage’s steam-powered Analytical Engine, a prototype computer around the size of a steam locomotive, which Babbage designed in 1837. While elements of the engine have been constructed in the past a complete working model has never been built. Citation: Campaign to build 1837 Babbage’s Analytical Engine (2010, October 19) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2010-10-campaign-babbage-analytical.html © 2010 PhysOrg.com Trial model of a part of the Analytical Engine, built by Babbage, as displayed at the Science Museum (London). More information: blog.jgc.org/center_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Explore further The idea was the brainchild of author, science blogger and programmer John Graham-Cumming, who wrote the Geek Atlas. He said the Engine was inspirational, since it was designed long before we had computers as we know them today, but he said that Babbage’s papers show the Engine was the first real general purpose computer, having an expandable memory, a central processing unit (which Babbage called the “mill”), microcode, and a printer and plotter. The computer was to be programmed via punch cards to carry out a variety of tasks.Babbage, an engineer and mathematician, designed the Analytical Engine to be constructed of iron and brass. It was a successor to the Difference Engine, a massive machine made of brass, but which was a calculator rather than a true computer. Several versions of the Difference Engine have been built, including one at London’s Science Museum, made in the 1980s. Babbage created many designs for the Analytical Engine, and the current campaign is to construct the design named Plan 28.The Analytical Engine would be built after Babbage’s blueprints, held at the Science Museum in London, have been digitized and fully deciphered. A three-dimensional simulation would then be created on computer to allow any problems to be overcome before physical construction begins.Graham-Cumming said the machine would be a great educational resource that would help people understand how computers work. He also envisages holding competitions for people to write programs to run on the Engine. He said building the Engine would be a celebration of Charles Babbage’s achievements, and it would also be fantastic to use it to execute the code written especially for it by famous Victorian mathematician Ada Lovelace, who worked with Babbage on the Engine. Her code is intended to calculate the Bernoulli sequence of numbers, which she worked on until 1843, and is the first computer program. X-ray named top achievement by British museumlast_img read more

Researchers at CERN take most precise measure of magnetic moment of antiproton

Researchers at CERN take most precise measure of magnetic moment of antiproton

first_img Measuring the magnetism of antimatter: Researchers measure antiprotons more accurately than ever before (Phys.org) —A research team made up of physicists from the US, Canada and Germany has succeeded in making the first individual-particle measurement of the magnetic moment of an antiproton. In their paper published in Physical Review Letters, they describe how they managed to capture a single antiproton and measured its magnetic moment in a way that is more precise (by a factor of 680) than any previous measurement efforts to date. The magnetic moment of an antiproton relates in a broad sense to its angular momentum—theory suggests it should be equal to the magnetic moment of its counterpart, the proton. Testing such theories requires conducting experiments to discern if such symmetry does truly exist. As part of a wide range of experiments meant to compare matter with its antimatter counterparts, researchers look to what is known as “Charge Parity Time” symmetry—the more scientists learn about it, the more they expect to learn about the nature of the universe and to help answer questions such as why there appears to be far more matter than antimatter.One aspect of such symmetry testing is measuring the magnetic moment of particles such as protons and antiprotons and then comparing them to one another to see if they match. To do that in this latest effort, the research team took equipment that had been developed to measure the magnetic moment of a proton to CERN—it’s one of the few places antiprotons can be had. But that was only the beginning, the team had to first slow the antiproton down as it was delivered at near light speed. To do that they shuttled it into a Penning trap—a device that uses magnets to cause particles to orbit around a central hub until they slow down enough to study. They also had to filter out all the other particles that came with the delivery. Overall, the researchers describe the process as very difficult. But in the end, they found success—they took the most precise measurement of the magnetic moment to date of an antiproton and in so doing found that it was close enough to measurements taken of the magnetic moment of protons to proclaim the two to be “exactly opposite”—they have equal strength but opposite spins.The results obtained by this study add credence to the Standard Model and leads scientists ever closer to gaining a true understanding of how the universe really works at the subatomic level. (a) The CPT symmetry can be likened to a mirror that reflects spatial coordinates, flips charge and other additive quantum numbers, and reverses time. To test for cracks in this CPT mirror, physicists check whether the magnetic moment of the proton (left) has the same magnitude as that of the antiproton (right). (Technically, the moments have opposite signs due to the way magnetic moment is defined relative to the spin.) (b) To measure the antiproton’s magnetic moment, the ATRAP Collaboration measures the cyclotron and spin-flip frequencies, fc and fs, respectively. The ratio of these frequencies gives the antiproton’s magnetic moment in terms of the nuclear magneton μN. Credit: APS/Alan Stonebraker Citation: Researchers at CERN take most precise measure of magnetic moment of antiproton (2013, April 9) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-04-cern-precise-magnetic-moment-antiproton.html © 2013 Phys.orgcenter_img Journal information: Physical Review Letters More information: One-Particle Measurement of the Antiproton Magnetic Moment, Phys. Rev. Lett. 110, 130801 (2013) DOI:10.1103/PhysRevLett.110.130801 (Free PDF)AbstractFor the first time a single trapped antiproton (p̅ ) is used to measure the p̅ magnetic moment μp̅ . The moment μp̅ =μp̅ S/(ℏ/2) is given in terms of its spin S and the nuclear magneton (μN) by μp̅ /μN=-2.792 845±0.000 012. The 4.4 parts per million (ppm) uncertainty is 680 times smaller than previously realized. Comparing to the proton moment measured using the same method and trap electrodes gives μp̅ /μp=-1.000 000±0.000 005 to 5 ppm, for a proton moment μp=μpS/(ℏ/2), consistent with the prediction of the CPT theorem.Physics Viewpoint Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Selflearning computer tackles problems beyond the reach of previous systems

Selflearning computer tackles problems beyond the reach of previous systems

first_imgThe new system that incorporates backpropagation into reservoir computing (“Full”) outperforms other reservoir computing systems (“Reservoir”). Credit: Hermans et al. ©2016 American Physical Society Neuromorphic computing mimics important brain feature More information: Michiel Hermans et al. “Embodiment of Learning in Electro-Optical Signal Processors.” Physical Review Letters. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.117.128301 The basic idea of backpropagation is that the system performs thousands of iterative calculations that reduce the error a little bit each time, bringing the computed value closer and closer to the optimal value. In the end, the repeated computations teach the system an improved way of computing a solution to a problem.In 2015, researchers performed the first proof-of-concept experiment in which the backpropagation algorithm in conjunction with the reservoir computing paradigm was tested on a simple task.In the new paper, the researchers have demonstrated that the algorithm can perform three much more complicated tasks, outperforming reservoir computing systems that do not use backpropagation. The present system is based on a photonic setup (specifically, a delay-coupled electro-optical system) in which the information is coded as the intensity of light pulses propagating in an optical fiber. The key to the demonstration is to physically implement both the reservoir computer and the backpropagation algorithm on the same photonic setup.The three tasks performed were a speech recognition task (TIMIT), an academic task often used to test reservoir computers (NARMA10), and a complex nonlinear task (VARDEL5) that is considered beyond the reach of traditional reservoir computing. The fact that the new system can tackle this third task suggests that the new approach to self-training has potential for expanding the computing territory of neuromorphic systems.”We are trying to broaden as much as possible the range of problems to which experimental reservoir computing can be applied,” Antonik said. “We are, for instance, writing up a manuscript in which we show that it can be used to generate periodic patterns and emulate chaotic systems.”While the demonstration shows that the new approach is robust against various experimental imperfections, the current set-up is limited by the speed of some of the data processing and data transfer, which the researchers expect can be improved in future work.”We aim to increase the speed of our experiments,” Antonik said. “The present experiment was implemented using a rather slow system, in which the neurons (internal variables) were processed one after the other. We are currently testing photonic systems in which the internal variables are all processed simultaneously—we call this a parallel architecture. This can provide several orders of magnitude of speed-up. Further in the future, we may revisit physical error backpropagation, but in these faster, parallel, systems.” Journal information: Physical Review Letters (Phys.org)—Researchers have developed a neuro-inspired analog computer that has the ability to train itself to become better at whatever tasks it performs. Experimental tests have shown that the new system, which is based on the artificial intelligence algorithm known as “reservoir computing,” not only performs better at solving difficult computing tasks than experimental reservoir computers that do not use the new algorithm, but it can also tackle tasks that are so challenging that they are considered beyond the reach of traditional reservoir computing. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. © 2016 Phys.org The results highlight the potential advantages of self-learning hardware for performing complex tasks, and also support the possibility that self-learning systems—with their potential for high energy-efficiency and ultrafast speeds—may provide an extension to the anticipated end of Moore’s law.The researchers, Michiel Hermans, Piotr Antonik, Marc Haelterman, and Serge Massar at the Université Libre de Bruxelles in Brussels, Belgium, have published a paper on the self-learning hardware in a recent issue of Physical Review Letters.”On the one hand, over the past decade there has been remarkable progress in artificial intelligence, such as spectacular advances in image recognition, and a computer beating the human Go world champion for the first time, and this progress is largely based on the use of error backpropagation,” Antonik told Phys.org. “On the other hand, there is growing interest, both in academia and industry (for example, by IBM and Hewlett Packard) in analog, brain-inspired computing as a possible route to circumvent the end of Moore’s law. “Our work shows that the backpropagation algorithm can, under certain conditions, be implemented using the same hardware used for the analog computing, which could enhance the performance of these hardware systems.”Developed over the past decade, reservoir computing is a neural algorithm that is inspired by the brain’s ability to process information. Early studies have shown that reservoir computing can solve complex computing tasks, such as speech and image recognition, and do so more efficiently than conventional algorithms. More recently, research has demonstrated that certain experimental implementations, in particular optical implementations, of reservoir computing can perform as well as digital ones.In more recent years, scientists have shown that the performance of reservoir computing can be improved by combining it with another algorithm called backpropagation. The backpropagation algorithm is at the heart of the recent advances in artificial intelligence, such as the milestone earlier this year of a computer beating the human world champion at the game of Go. Explore further Citation: Self-learning computer tackles problems beyond the reach of previous systems (2016, October 10) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-10-self-learning-tackles-problems-previous.htmllast_img read more

Astronomers discover a dense hot Jupiter exoplanet orbiting a sunlike star

Astronomers discover a dense hot Jupiter exoplanet orbiting a sunlike star

first_img More information: EPIC 220504338b: A dense hot-Jupiter transiting a solar analogue, arXiv:1611.07614 [astro-ph.EP] arxiv.org/abs/1611.07614AbstractWe present the discovery of EPIC 220504338b, a dense hot-Jupiter discovered using photometry from Campaign 8 of the Kepler-2 (K2) mission and high-resolution spectroscopic follow up obtained with the FEROS spectrograph. The planet orbits a V=13.68 solar analogue in a P=5.81771+0.00004−0.00004 day orbit, has a radius of 0.91+0.10−0.07RJ and a mass of 1.28+0.11−0.12MJ. With a density of 2.08+0.66−0.57 gr/cm3, the planet is among the densest systems known having masses below 2 MJ and Teq>1000, and is just above the temperature limit at which inflation mechanisms are believed to start being important. Based on its mass and radius, we estimate that EPIC 220504338b should have a heavy element content on the order of ∼ 110 M⊕ or greater. Explore further Jupiter-like planet discovered in a distant star system Artist’s impression of a “hot Jupiter”. Credit: Ricardo Cardoso Reis (CAUP) © 2016 Phys.org (Phys.org)—Astronomers have detected a so-called “hot Jupiter” exoplanet transiting a distant sun-like star located some 1,800 light years from the Earth. The newly discovered planet, designated EPIC 220504338b, was found using NASA’s prolonged Kepler mission known as K2. The findings are presented in a paper published Nov. 23 on arXiv.org. Citation: Astronomers discover a dense ‘hot Jupiter’ exoplanet orbiting a sun-like star (2016, November 29) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-11-astronomers-dense-hot-jupiter-exoplanet.html EPIC 220504338b was first spotted by K2 as a planetary candidate during the spacecraft’s Campaign 8 in mid-2016. To confirm it as a planet, a team of researchers led by Nestor Espinoza of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile conducted follow-up observations using ESO’s Fibre-fed, Extended Range, Échelle Spectrograph (FEROS) at La Silla Observatory in Chile. FEROS observational campaign was carried out in August and November 2016.FEROS is a bench-mounted, high-resolution, environmentally controlled, astronomical Échelle spectrograph with high efficiency, large wavelength range and high resolution. The instrument enables conducting a large variety of stellar and extra-galactic spectroscopic observation programs requiring high spectral stability high-resolution.Recent FEROS spectroscopic observations allowed the team to perform radial velocity measurements that confirmed EPIC 220504338b is a dense “hot Jupiter” transiting a solar analogue as well as provided initial stellar parameters of its host star.”In this work, we have presented the discovery of EPIC 220504338b, a new hot Jupiter orbiting a metal-rich solar analogue discovered using photometry from Campaign 8 of the K2 mission and follow-up radial velocities using the FEROS spectrograph,” the scientists wrote in the paper.The so-called “hot Jupiters” like EPIC 220504338b are gas giant planets, similar in characteristics to the solar system’s biggest planet, with orbital periods of less than 10 days. They have high surface temperatures, as they orbit their parent stars very closely.According to the research, EPIC 220504338b is about 10 percent smaller than Jupiter and approximately 30 percent more massive. The exoworld orbits its 6-billion-year-old sun-like parent star every 5.8 days. Notably, with a density of nearly 2.1 gr/cm3 and an equilibrium temperature of about 1,160 K, the planet is one of the densest “hot Jupiters” below two Jupiter masses known to date.The researchers explain the newly discovered planet’s mass and radius by the amount of heavy elements in the planet, which should be on the order of at least 110 Earth masses.”The mass and radius of EPIC 220504338b could be explained in terms of the amount of heavy elements in the planet. (…) Based on its mass and radius, we estimate that EPIC 220504338b should have a heavy element content on the order of about 110 Earth masses or greater,” the paper reads.The team also derived fundamental parameters of the host star EPIC 220504338. The observations indicate that this star has a mass to that of the sun, with a radius of about 1.05 solar radii. It is also approximately 23 percent more dense than the sun.However, EPIC 220504338 shows a high metallicity, which significantly deviates from the sun. Therefore, this star was classified as a slightly metal-rich solar analogue. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Reading a childs play

Reading a childs play

first_imgGlazed with myriad books from varied genres, the ongoing World Book Fair in the capital’s Pragati Maidan, shone with an astounding collection of books for children and youth, with an entire hall dedicated to this section. Move aside encyclopedias, puzzles, toys, fables, story books and novels, now its the era for three-dimensional books for children, which has replaced them all. In fact these books emerged as the most popular choice during the fair. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Visitors to the children pavilion were the highest and, interestingly, had a mix of all age groups. Apart from just reading a story, nowadays children need that extra edge to keep them hooked, was the feeling I garnered from most publishers concentrating on children’s literature. Ajay Parmar, who heads Bonnier Publishing, explained this trend, ‘There is a need for publishers to pack in a lot of activity in children’s books now. Such books instantly attract their attention. We have a series of puppet books, which makes the entire process of story-telling interesting as well as refreshing. There are also varied activities which have been incorporated in children’s books, to include 3D cut-outs, illustrations, dot-to-dot diagrams, paintings and also jigsaw puzzles. The entire process of storytelling has been completely renewed and revamped now.’ Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixAn innovative book Lets Lace at Ajay’s stall focused on the process of tying laces, and at the end had a 3D shoe cut-out which pops out, where the child can actually implement what they had learnt through the course of the book. Another interesting book Theo focused on smell, where the little pup Theo goes out in search of adventures and discovers honey, rose and strawberry through the course of the journey. Each of these flavours can be touched and then smelt by the reader.A lot of young mothers and their children were seen at the stalls that had displayed books exploring fairy tales and nursery rhymes in three-dimension. Lucky Dhawan from Future books had a fantastic collection of 3D books. ‘There is a huge demand for such books. As children view them as something different and interesting, they get immediately attracted to them,’ says Lucky. There was a dedicated stall to 3D books –  what with the special glasses provided, the children had a riot reading these books. This hall, apart from books, also showcased stationary items, toys and computer games CDs for children. Naturally, children flocked here, pittering and pattering about. You could see them pulling their parents to the 3D stalls to have a look. Neeta Sinha, a young mother who bought a collection of these books said, ‘My son dragged me here as he was so fascinated by the whole idea of 3D books. Cinema has a huge role to play here, as children have been watching a lot of such films.’Apart from this hall dedicated to books for children and youth, the pavilion hosting foreign publishers was a sheer delight as well. Organised by the National Book Trust of India, the fair saw books from countries such as China, the US, Poland, South Korea and Turkey as well as United Nations agencies. This year, the focus is on France and its publishing industry and contemporary literature.Walking past the energised crowd of young school kids, families as well as couples with tiny tots, one is immediately engulfed by a feeling of sheer thirst to purchase an instant good read.The chilly breeze supplemented by the winter sun, walking past the enthusiastic faces discovering the fair was an engaging experience for a first-timer like me at the popular book fair.  For the sheer delight of engulfing yourself in an intellectually and creatively stimulating environ, don’t give this fair a miss. It is on till 10 February, so go ahead pile up some more books. And make sure you grab a 3D copy that interests you as well.last_img read more

Hamari Adhuri Kahani to regale Pak theatre buffs

Hamari Adhuri Kahani to regale Pak theatre buffs

first_imgBased on the novel All That Could Have Been, which is co-written by Suhrita Sengupta and Mahesh Bhatt, Hamari Adhuri Kahani is headed to the proscenium arch, landing first in Delhi on August 1 and later, in Karachi. Bhatt’s protege Imran Zahid will be seen reprising Emraan Hashmi’s role as Aarav, a rich and suave hotelier who falls in love with an already married florist, Vasudha.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The play version of the Bollywood film, Hamari Adhuri Kahani is not Mahesh Bhatt’s first script to be staged in Pakistan. Earlier in April, Daddy was put up as part of NAPA’s International Theatre Festival and was highly appreciated.The veteran filmmaker has once again managed to bring out the two elements on digging his own troubled past.“Yes, Hamari Adhuri Kahani is sourced from my own lived life,” said Mahesh bhatt. He added that, “It has the heartbeat of my mother, who lived a difficult, solitary life as her husband, whom she loved so intensely, was conspicuous by his absence. He was simply unavailable for her.” The story, according to him, is written from the perspective of this young single mother and how she deals with the world. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixWoman power is a major concern for the ace director of Hamari Adhuri Kahani which is a triangle drama, but the core issue is, whether a woman should take up the role of Sita, or wake up the Radha in her. This story is important because India finds itself at the crossroads today, with the pull of tradition and the endeavour to break free of conventional bondages both existing simultaneously.  This story negotiates the cultural roadblocks and barricades that stand in the path of Indian women’s self-emancipation. Bhatt, however, agrees that Hamari Adhuri Kahani follows the overriding trend seen through all his movies that is, the steady transformation of his female protagonist from being initially vulnerable and shaky, to managing to ‘breakaway’ by the end of the story and this breakaway comes through her own efforts. “She finds her voice through her own struggles,” he says. Bhatt concedes that his women characters are strong because he had always seen his mother as the most powerful person someone who dared to live life on her own terms. “She had organic evolution.” This, in a way, explains why Bhatt felt most at ease with women who, like his mother, were solitary in nature. The book takes the readers, places closer to a single woman’s journey in modern India in a different manner.Zahid says, “Bhatt sahab feels I will do justice to the lead character because I have earlier played the characters pulled from autobiographical real-life situations, such as in the stage adaptations of Arth and Daddy or The Last Salute.” Happy Ranajit, an NSD graduate, who is also a prestigious award winning actor and director, is directing the play. Pakistani sufi rock band Raeth with hits like Bhula Do and Waada has also been roped in for this play marking their foray in theatre. Recently , Wajhi Farooqi  the lead singer of the band has recorded the song Lamha Tera Mera along with playback singer Palak Mucchall. “This project will be special for us as it’s an opportunity to modify Indo-Pak relations, as this play will be taking place in Lahore as well. I’m excited to work in theater since it will be the first time where I will be working with Bhatt Sahab,” says Wajhi Farooqui the lead vocalist.last_img read more

Reviving classical art

Reviving classical art

first_imgIn an effort to recreate and revive the Indian classical theatre, National School of Drama is organising the performance of Abhignana Shakuntalam under the direction of Rita Ganguly, an eminent professor of the school. Sanskrit classical theatre has a highly developed theatre technique and its training is an integral part of NSD curriculum, giving an opportunity to the students to interpret contemporary theatre practice inspired by classical theatre. Abhignana Shakuntalam will be presented by second year students of NSD,  incorporating contemporary issues along with Kalidasa’s immortal verses. The performances are scheduled from September 11 to 15 at 6:30 pm with one additional show on September 12 at 3 pm at Abhimanch auditorium, Bahawalpur House, Bhagwandas Lane off Bhagwandas Road. NSD has invited one of the senior most theatre teachers Rita Ganguly, who also introduced a syllabus called Movement and Mime at NSD and has taught in the School for 35 years. Rita Ganguly spoke to Millennium Post and revealed, “Its been hardly three weeks that second year students are learning and I think they’re doing quite well.” Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Delving into the techniques used in Sanskrit classical theatre, Rita Ganguly said, “We need a serious effort to revive our classical theatre. It is the most developed form of theatre on which there is treatise. Nowhere across the world do you have a treatise over theatre techniques for voice, speech, body and internalisation. Internalisation means a person becoming a patra (vessel or carrier) through which the character is presented to the audience.”  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixKalidasa’s immortal work Abhignana Shakuntalam has been a seminal text through centuries. NSD will present the play in the contemporary context of women’s emancipation and will utilise the techniques of classical theatre. It will represent today’s atrocities and trauma faced by a young girl every day. Shakuntala, a young woman, brought up at the hermitage of Kanvarishi, was seduced by the king Dushyant. Later, he refused to recognize the girl and denied the possibility of the girl being impregnated by him. She was rejected and insulted in the court. Years later, he comes to meet Shakuntala, to win back his abandoned wife and his son Bharata.  In the presentation, Shakuntala refuses to go back, just like in Ramayana, where Sita sends forth Luv and Kush to Ram but refuses to go back with her husband. There is a growing awareness, in the world, to preserve ancient traditions. Thus Globe Theatre is being revived in London, Noh and Kabuki Theatre is zealously preserved in Japan and the Classical Greek Theatre in Greece. In this backdrop it becomes imperative to look at our own heritage and attempt to revive our classical theatre which goes back at least 5000 years.last_img read more

Usha Uthup institutes Stagecraft Award

Usha Uthup institutes Stagecraft Award

first_imgKolkata: Indian pop icon Usha Uthup has instituted ‘Stagecraft Award’ to acknowledge the contributions of technicians, who are the backstage heroes of any entertainment show, and has roped in Bengali superstar Prosenjit Chatterjee as the ‘face’ of the award. This year there will be 16 award categories, three special awards and one ‘Hall Of Fame’ award, Uthup told a press meet here. The categories will include Best Event Set Designer, Best Sound Engineer (Stage), Best Choreographer, Best Make-Up Artist, Best Costume Designer, Best Theatre Production, Best Event Director, Best Event Manager, Special Awards and Special Jury Recognition Award, she said on Tuesday. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life “The aim of the foundation is to give recognition to those who work tirelessly behind the stage to make any on-stage performance successful,” Uthup said. Uthup, the founder trustee of Stagecraft Foundation, said the award function will be held on September 22, 2018 and the winner of the ‘Hall of Fame’ award will be disclosed on that day. Chatterjee said “We must give these craftsmen the limelight once at least which they truly deserve.” The jury members for the award 2018 included percussionist Tanmoy Bose, danseuse Tanushree Shankar, theatre personality-actor Bratya Basu and fashion designer Agnimitra Paul.last_img read more

Strengthening IndiaVietnam ties

Strengthening IndiaVietnam ties

first_imgParallel paths met when an event showcasing the similar approach towards strengthening cultural bonds was held in the national Capital recently. Indian Council for Cultural Relations’ two-day bilateral seminar on ‘Indo-Vietnam Cultural Relations: Retrospect and Prospect’ was inaugurated at Azad Bhavan on Saturday.Prof. Lokesh Chandra, President, ICCR addressed the crowd by saying: “History shapes a nation’s future. The Indian traders and monks who had once migrated from India to Vietnam, had established their Champa (Hindu) kingdoms in central Vietnam without any violence or invasion.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’“The Indian approach was sharing, which gave them scripts for language while cotton fabrics and sugar were major exports at the highest point in Vietnam. In the past 2000 years Vietnam has maintained its identity while we have a problem in India. International Mother Language Day, accepted by UNESCO India and Vietnam, must change terminology as language is power.”Guest of Honour, HE Ton Sinh Thanh, Ambassador, Socialist Republic of Vietnam, said: “Cultural Cooperation is one of the pillars in the strategic partnerships between our two countries.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with Netflix“Vietnam and India have many cultural similarities which have been accumulated by the interactions between our countries over the last 2000 years. Besides enhancing the exchange of artists, cultural troops, students and think tanks, we should try new areas such as exchange of movies and promoting film shooting in other countries.” The Chief Guest, Shri Anil Wadhwa, Secretary (East), Ministry of External Affairs said: “Buddhism has a long history which dates back to the 3rd Century BC in Vietnam. Furthermore, some historians also feel that the first oldest Hindu kingdom, Funan ruled from Vyadhapura was established in the lower valley of the Mekong.  “The carvings of Cham period depicted events of Ramayana and Indian mythology such as Marriage ceremony of Ram–Sita, Krishna playing flute, Indra and Dancing apsaras, Vishnu and Sheshnag and the Shivling. The depiction of musical instruments such as Pakhawaj, Mridangam, Drums etc. are reflective influence of Indian music. Vietnam’s famous LakhonBassac dance drama is based on the epic of the Ramayana (Ramleela).”As cultural relations play an important role in building people to people contacts, future areas of cooperation could make film production in Vietnam which will help in increasing tourism between the two countries as Bollywood has been attracting tourism all around the world. Commenting on the relevance of the seminar, Ambassador C Rajasekhar, Director General, ICCR said: “The Seminar is an effort to unearth the contacts between these two ancient civilisations and would cover the centuries-old cultural bonding between India and Vietnam: role of Hinduism and Buddhism, relevance of culture and literature in today’s geopolitical scenario in the context.”last_img read more

Exercise can keep brain active

first_imgExercise can increase the production of a key protein that is likely to help in keeping the brain active as well as lower the risk of neurological diseases like dementia, a new study conducted on mice has found.The findings showed that during the rodents’ exercise routine, certain chemicals naturally build up in the brain and kick-start the production of Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) – also called “Miracle-Gro” – for the brain because of its role in enhancing memory and the growth of nerve cells. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’“We believe that our study shows a precise biological mechanism behind increased BDNF production in mammals due to exercise,” said Moses Chao, professor at New York University, in the US.“Unravelling the mysteries of BDNF is important as we seek more ways to naturally keep mammalian brains healthy, including those of humans,” Chao added.Unravelling the mystery of BDNF production to naturally keep mammalian brains healthy, the researchers found that ketone – a chemical naturally produced in the liver called beta-hydroxybutyrate (DBHB) –, triggers biological reactions that activates the BDNF gene to produce more of its protein.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixAlso, this DBHB – which builds up in the body and brain with exercise – was found to prevent other proteins in the brain known as histone deacetylase complexes, or HDACs, from suppressing BDNF production by altering the environment of the BDNF gene. For the study, published online in the journal eLife, the team compared the brains of mice that had been allowed to run at will on a cage wheel for a month with the brains of mice that did not run. “Our findings suggest how we might boost production of miracle gro as studies have confirmed that doing so protects the brain,” Chao said.The researchers used commercially available psychiatric drugs already known to stabilize mood and prevent seizures by inhibiting histone deacetylase complexes and “open up” the otherwise “closed”  gene, making it easier to trigger its action and increase  production of miracle gro by as much as 50 per cent.last_img read more

More people show interest in online pharmacies

More people show interest in online pharmacies

first_imgA survey released on Wednesday revealed that about 90 per cent people are interested in online purchase of medicines.The survey was undertaken by Consumer Online Foundation, one of the leading consumer organisations in India, and Bureau of Research on Industry and Economic Fundamentals (BRIEF).A total of 4,600 people belonging to all age groups were interviewed for the survey. Around half the respondents were in the age group of 18 to 34 years. Of all the respondents, 88 per cent were males, while 12 per cent were females. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’According to the survey, consumers belonging to the age groups 65 to 70 years and 35 to 44 years showed the highest intent to use e-pharmacy in the market.“Around 74 per cent of the respondents agreed that convenience in choosing the time and location for the delivery of orders would improve the acceptability of e-pharmacy in the market,” the survey pointed out.“Around 84 per cent of the respondents are of the opinion that low prices, discounts, and savings on purchases would be a big feature that would attract consumers towards e-pharmacy,” it added. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixAccording to the survey, 50 per cent of people said selling medicines without prescription is a norm and while 50 per cent of respondents admitted buying medicines from a chemist shop without prescription, 36 per cent never received any bill for the medicines bought. The survey also reveals that Drugs & Cosmetics Act, 1940 is the most flouted law in India with rise in medicines being sold without prescriptions and proper records through offline media. Founder of Consumer Online Foundation and Patient Safety and Access Initiative of India Foundation Bejon Misra said: “Government has set up a sub-committee to establish guidelines for online sale of medicines, scheduled to meet on July 8, for which the consumer survey finding can be helpful.”“The survey highlights the need for strict enforcement of all the existing laws and immediate legislation in place of the existing Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940. It can also bring changes in certain sections of all the other relevant laws to keep pace with changing timings and take stringent action against such criminals who are undermining the health and safety of the citizens,” he added.last_img read more

Retaining the old charm Tourists flock back to Queen of Hills to

Retaining the old charm Tourists flock back to Queen of Hills to

first_imgDarjeeling: It might not be the picture post card white Christmas that Darjeeling once upon a time could boast of but the Queen of Hills has reason enough to cheer.Tourists have started flocking back to Darjeeling to enjoy the festivities. Chowrasta, the nerve center of the Hill town, is a bee hive of activity with the return of tourists. “Though Darjeeling has changed a great deal and the Raj effect has worn off considerably it has still its own charm and we love to spend Christmas here,” stated Tanmoy Chakroborty, Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifea tourist from Kolkata. Most of the Hotels in Darjeeling are booked till the first week of January 2019. Noreen Dunne, former teacher of the St. Joseph’s College fondly reminisced: “Back in the days when we were kids, Christmas was all about goodies. But the specialty of our family was that all the Christmas goodies were prepared at home. We used mix the cake in huge containers wearing rubber boots, the container generally being placed in between our legs and we vigorously mixed the ingredients with spatulas. As we didn’t have an oven big enough, Ghuramiya (the oldest confectioner in town) used to bake it for us. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThen, there was home made cold meat to which my father used to add his special seasoning and my mother’s famous short bread. We used to go for Carol singing and the special midnight mass. My sister used to hang long stockings that used to be stuffed with presents.” The true flavour of Darjeeling Christmas is still preserved by Glenary’s — one of the oldest eateries in town. Glenary’s which opened in 1938 was then called Pliva’s after the owners — the Pliva family. After the Plivas left for England, A T Edward, who was the then Manager, bought the confectionery and rechristened it the Glenary’s. Ajoy Edward, the grandson of Late AT Edward, stated: “Christmas means good food and good wine.” From the British days till date, Glenary’s has been laying out a sumptuous buffet on Christmas eve and Christmas.The Christmas spread consists of continental dishes like roasted pork, roasted chicken, gratin, mince pies and plum puddings.The confectionery is packed with Christmas goodies — the Plum Cake with white icing, the Noel Cake, Mince pies and puddings. The fruits used in the Christmas cakes are marinated for two months in liquor. Recipes are still traditional. Christmas decoration, the crackling fireplace and the waiters wearing bright red Christmas hats conjure up the perfect Christmas. “We have carol singing groups and live bands singing Christmas numbers to add to the old world charm” added Ajoy. The Windamere Hotel in Darjeeling is also a seat of traditional Christmas celebrations. The visitors get a treat of overseas entertainers, Carol singers and a great Christmas spread.last_img read more

ECI bench meets representatives of civil society organisations

ECI bench meets representatives of civil society organisations

first_imgKolkata: The full bench of the Election Commission of India on Thursday met representatives of civil society organisations, who demanded necessary security measures in the state during the upcoming Lok Sabha polls to ensure a free and fair election. “The Commission met with… representatives of civil society organisations to elicit their views and suggestions to make the Lok Sabha elections, 2019 more inclusive, ethical, accessible and participative,” a release issued by the office of the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) here said. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killed Representatives of the organisations included retired Supreme Court judge Asok Kumar Ganguly and theatre personality Rudraprasad Sengupta, among others. At the meeting with the bench, led by Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora, ‘Save Democracy Forum’ submitted a 61-page report on the alleged violence during the panchayat elections in West Bengal last year. The release by the CEO office said a photo album was also released by the Election Commission of India (ECI) during its visit to West Bengal. The album captures initiatives taken up by the ECI to ensure greater inclusion and participation of persons with disabilities into the electoral registration process, it said. The bench earlier met representatives of various political parties in West Bengal, who sought heavy deployment of central forces in the state during the upcoming general elections.last_img read more

Manaku The one who entered Gods world

first_imgThe lives of exponents of Pahari paintings are shrouded in mystery. Those who are interested in paintings of Hindu religious epics are well aware of Nainsukh, the younger son of the painter Pandit Seu but only a handful are aware of the conservative painter and the older brother of Nainsukh.After documenting ‘Nainsukh of Guler,’ Dr. B N Goswamy – a distinguished art historian and Professor Emeritus of Art History at the Punjab University, Chandigarh – intrigued by Manaku, reconstructed whatever little is known of his life in ‘Manaku of Guler.’ Also Read – Add new books to your shelf”Most of the painters have remained uncelebrated and it has been an obsession of mine to try and do something in terms of going back to the painters themselves; see what we can learn about them or just try and reconstruct the way they thought about things,” sighed the author with despair on the anonymity of many such great Indian painters. Manaku came from an obscure little town in the hills of northern India – home to his singularly talented family – and yet his vision knew almost no limits. Endowed with soaring imagination and great painterly skills, this man – with a name that literally means a ruby, was capable of painting giant rings of time upon timeless waters, envisioning the world of gods and demons, littered with cosmic battles and earthly triumphs, but also gazing, with tender eyes, upon the world of two lovers in which there is tortured loneliness at one moment but, in the next, ‘her garlands fall on his chest and glisten like white cranes on a dark cloud’. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveAt least three great series were painted by Manaku – ‘the Siege of Lanka’ which took forward the narrative of the Ramayana from the point where his father, the gifted Pandit Seu, had left it; ‘The Gita Govinda’ – Jayadeva’s immortal 12th century Sanskrit lyric – which he completed in 1730; and ‘The Bhagavata Purana’, that remarkably extensive text, revered and recited by millions to this day, which he set about to negotiate with his brush in ca. 1740–45. After careful observation of Manaku’s paintings, Dr B N Goswamy believes that through his paintings of Hindu religious relics, “he entered the world of the gods.” He further says, “Manaku had the ability to look gods into the eye and converse with them as if they were colleagues. He never used any honorifics to describe a god. It was as if he had the absolute ability to talk to the gods without any formality and turn what they were doing into paintings. This ability of him; to just close his eyes and see that this is what must have happened between Ram and Raavan or Krishna and Radha, and depicting it so beautifully is what intrigued me to write this book”.last_img read more

Mamata likely to attend United India rally at Vizag on Sunday

Mamata likely to attend United India rally at Vizag on Sunday

first_imgKolkata: With the highly anticipated Lok Sabha elections drawing closer, Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee is likely to attend a United India rally at Visakhapatnam on Sunday.Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister and Telegu Desam Party (TDP) chief N Chandrababu Naidu has invited Banerjee to address the rally. National Conference (NC) leader Omar Abdullah and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal are expected to address the gathering as well. Banerjee is likely to address a political rally at Dhubri in Assam in support of the Trinamool Congress candidate on April 5. She is likely to publish the party’s election manifesto on Wednesday. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataIt has been learnt that the manifesto will be divided into two halves. The first part contains the development work carried out in Bengal in the past eight years, while the second part contains the failures of the Narendra Modi government in the past five years. It was Mamata Banerjee who had initiated the move to set up the United India front to oust Narendra Modi. On January 19, the historic United India rally was held in Kolkata, where leaders of 21 political parties took part. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateThe rally was addressed by political veterans like Sharad Pawar, Farooq Abdullah, former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda, and Mallikarjun Kharge. There were youngsters like Akhilesh Yadav, Tejashwi Yadav and Hardik Patel in the rally as well. M K Stalin had also addressed the rally. Banerjee was the first political leader to criticise the banning of high value notes announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 8, 2016. Within half-an-hour of the demonetisation being announced, she had said that it would stall the development of the country and affect the common man badly. Over the years, economists of both national and international acclaim had pointed out the disaster which had hit the Indian economy due to the decision of the Narendra Modi government. One after the other, Banerjee has highlighted the shortcomings of the BJP government. Over 12,000 farmers have committed suicide, hasty implementation of GST has affected the industrialists and traders badly and Modi’s statement that Rs 15 lakh would be deposited in the bank accounts of every Indian, has not come true. Banerjee has spoken about the importance of the regional parties and emphasised that in order to save the Indian Constitution, the regional parties should be strengthened. Political experts said that Banerjee’s presence at the rally would increase the strength of the United Front. In the 2014 election, BJP had bagged three seats in Andhra Pradesh but experts feel that the party has a slim chance of retaining them in 2019.last_img read more

After Mt Everest police officer set to scale Kanchenjunga

After Mt Everest police officer set to scale Kanchenjunga

first_imgKolkata: West Bengal police assistant sub inspector Rudra Prasad Halder, who had successfully scaled the Mount Everest in 2016, will soon embark on Kanchenjunga expedition.Halder, who presently works with the wireless department of Bengal police, is a mountaineer with repute and has already successfully made 21 mountain summits, the most notable one was the Mount Everest when he reached its summit on May 21, 2016. Sharing his expedition plan with the Millennium Post, Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataHalder said: ” I will leave for Kathmandu from Kolkata airport on Thursday and will staying there Saturday. The main expedition will start from Taplejung on April 8 and after walking for 11 days we will be reaching the base camp of Kanchenjunga. Then it will take another 40 to 45 days tentatively to climb up to the summit which has a height of 8586 metres.” Mountaineer Biplab Baidya and two other climbers will accompany Halder in the expedition. Kanchenjunga happens to be the third highest mountain peak in the world. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in state” I am grateful to the Bengal police for funding my expedition. My seniors have always encouraged and supported me. It was Director General (DG) Virendra (Sir) who flagged off my expedition on Tuesday,” Halder said. He recollected the fateful day of May 20, 2014 when mountaineer Chhanda Gayen went missing along with two sherpas in an avalanche while descending the western side of Mount Kanchenjunga in Nepal. Later, it was declared all three of them died in the avalanche. Halder had attempted to scale the Mount Everest in 2015 but had to stall his expedition due to the devastating earthquake in Nepal. Halder was trained at Uttarkashi’s Nehru Institute of Mountaineering. He is associated with a Sonarpur-based trekking club Arohi. It may be mentioned that there are four climbing routes to reach the summit of Kanchenjunga, three of which are in Nepal— from the southwest, northwest and northeast— and one from northeastern Sikkim in India. Till date, the northeastern route from Sikkim has been successfully used only three times. The Indian government has banned expeditions to Kanchenjunga, and therefore this route has been closed since 2000.last_img read more

Cops question man held with fake notes worth Rs 25 lakh

Cops question man held with fake notes worth Rs 25 lakh

first_imgKolkata: The Special Task Force (STF) of Kolkata Police nabbed a Fake Indian Currency Note (FICN) racketeer on Thursday night near Sealdah railway station. He was carrying FICN worth Rs 2.5 lakh.According to sources, on Thursday afternoon sleuths got a tip-off that a person from Malda has reached Kolkata to deal in FICN. Working on the information members of anti-FICN team of the STF came to know that the suspect will come to Sealdah railway station area for the deal. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataImmediately, sleuths went to the area and started keeping strong vigil in and around the Sealdah railway station. Meanwhile, one of the official of the STF team got a call from his sources stating the location of the suspect. After being informed, the team rushed to the spot near Sealdah station and surrounded the suspect identified as Sahabul Shaikh of Kaliachak in Malda. During search sleuths found several Indian currency notes of Rs 2,000 denomination. Though it looked like original, sleuths had some doubts. Shaikh along with the notes was taken to the STF facility in Lalbazar. There sleuths checked the notes thoroughly and made sure that those are the fake ones. Shaikh was arrested immediately. After counting the money it was found that he was carrying 125 fake notes of Rs 2,000 denominations. Sleuths are interrogating him to nab the receiver of the fake notes.last_img read more

Support pours in for CM national leaders claim ECI decision biased

Support pours in for CM national leaders claim ECI decision biased

first_imgKolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said on Thursday the destruction of Vidyasagar’s bust by the BJP was not an isolated incident as the party had been involved in similar incidents in the past as well.Taking to Twitter, Banerjee said: “Vandalising the statue of Pandit Iswar Chandra Vidyasagar may not be viewed as an isolated incident. Incidence of vandalism of statues is not a new phenomenon for BJP.” During her election campaign later in the day, Banerjee pointed out that the BJP leaders pulled down a statue of Lenin in Tripura after they came to power. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: Mamata”We can have different political ideologies but demolishing a statue is highly condemnable,” Banerjee said during her rally referring to the Tripura incident. Banerjee said the Election Commission of India’s decision to curtail the campaign time for nine Bengal seats that will vote on Sunday was biased. She alleged the step was a direct attack on democracy and taken under the directions of the BJP. She said people would give a befitting reply. The Chief Minister was not only infuriated by the enormity of the incident but was considerably vocal in her protest against the BJP. During a press conference on Wednesday, Banerjee trained her guns at the BJP for its alleged role in influencing the ECI after it curtailed the duration of campaign for the last phase. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateBanerjee’s protest against the BJP and her claims about the ECI decision was supported by various national leaders. Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti took to Twitter to show her solidarity with the Bengal Chief Minister. She called Banerjee a lioness for speaking to BJP in the “language it understands”. Accusing the Election Commission of being biased, Mufti tweeted: ” Bengal plunged into chaos and violence on Tuesday. Why did it take ECI 2 days to impose a ban on campaigning? Was it to facilitate PM’s rallies? Such brazen bias by a constitutional body proves its subservient to the whims and fancies of BJP. How low will BJP stoop to wrest power?” National Conference leader Omar Abdullah echoing the same views asserted that the TMC chief will emerge victorious after the announcement of results. “The BJP can team up with the EC in Bengal, they can have a tailor-made campaign designed to fragment and polarise the electorate, they can have all their model code violations overlooked. None of it will matter because on the 23rd Mamata Official didi will sweep West Bengal,” Abdullah wrote on Twitter. Various prominent leaders across the country who supported Banerjee were Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati, Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav and Telugu Desam national president and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu. Banerjee has also conveyed her gratitude to Naidu on her Twitter account. Mayawati said the ECI had been working under the pressure of the Centre. PM Narendra Modi and BJP National President Amit Shah have been targeting Banerjee, she said.last_img read more

The Herd Hierarchy Colins NFL Top 10 after Week 15

The Herd Hierarchy Colins NFL Top 10 after Week 15

first_imgEvery Tuesday during the NFL season, Colin puts out his Herd Hierarchy Top 10 NFL power rankings, and this week, the Steelers and Eagles drop down; the Seahawks and Chargers drop out; and there’s a new #1.Here’s the Top 10 after Week 15:10. Baltimore Ravens – Baltimore is fighting for a playoff spot at 8-6, and Colin likes their coaching and defense. The Ravens have 15 Takeaways in their last 5 games (most in the NFL), and offensively, the recipe is simple, run the ball and hope Joe Flacco doesn’t throw picks. They’re 7-0 when they run the ball at least 27 times (1-6 otherwise), and 0-4 when Flacco throws multiple INT’s (8-2 otherwise). If the Ravens can get in, they can play the Patriots tough in Foxboro. 7. Carolina Panthers – The Panthers come in at 7 after ruining Aaron Rodgers comeback party. Cam Newton has still been all over the map, with up and down QB ratings of 71.0, 120.4, 59.8, 107.5, 64.9, then 128.0 in his last 6 games. Carolina’s D has only been allowing 25.4 points per game over their last 5 games, which is a bad sign because the offense isn’t built to win shootouts.They’re the only NFC team with a pass rushing duo totaling 10+ Sacks each (Julius Peppers & Mario Addison). Colin loves the roster, but still has concerns about Cam’s consistency, especially in the playoffs. 9. Dallas Cowboys – The Cowboys come in at 9, and get Ezekiel Elliott back from a 6-game suspension just in time for a late playoff push. Dallas is 7-1 when they run the ball at least 30 times, and should be ready to feed Zeke down the stretch. In Dak Prescott’s career, his Passer Rating is over 25 points higher with Elliott in the lineup. A healthy Dallas can make some noise if they get into the postseason. 4. New Orleans Saints – Colin is still buying the Saints as a Super Bowl contender. With a newfound running game, Drew Brees has posted an NFL leading 10 100+ Passer Rating games this season. Alvin Kamara and Mark Ingram are just the 2nd RB duo in NFL history to each have 1,300 Yards from scrimmage and 10 TD’s in a single season. They’ve also totaled 100 Yards from scrimmage in the same game 4 times (most by any RB duo since 1985).In the 2 games since rookie corner Marshon Lattimre returned to the lineup, the pass defense has only allowed 2 Pass TD’s, and an opposing QB rating of 48.8, while forcing 5 INT’s. with Lattimore out of the lineup, they were allowing a Passer Rating of 108.6. The Saints are dangerous and could win it all. Advertisement 6. Pittsburgh Steelers – The Steelers had their hearts ripped out against New England, and likely lost home-field advantage in the process. It’s not all bad news for Pittsburgh. Despite a nightmare end to his Sunday, Big Ben has a 101.7 Passer Rating over his last 9 games, and it was the first Steelers loss when Le’Veon Bell had at least 100 Scrimmage Yards since Week 10, 2016.Colin is concerned about the defense since Ryan Shazier was injured. They’ve allowed 5.36 Yards/Rush over their last 3 including 5 rushing TD’s. To make it to the Super Bowl, they’ll have to go through New England, which has historically been a house of horrors. 5. Philadelphia Eagles – Nick Foles proved Colin right with a capable first start replacing Carson Wentz against the Giants.  Foles had a 107.9 Passer Rating on 3rd Down and a 124.0 Red Zone Passer Rating. Philly has stepped back defensively, allowing touchdowns on 81.8% of their opponents Red Zone trips over their last 3 games, after only allowing 48.0% thru their 1st 11. They’re also allowing opponents to convert on 48.6% of 3rd Downs in their last 3 after only allowing 28.6% thru their 1st 11. the Eagles aren’t as good without Wentz, but they’re still good. Minnesota Vikings – The Vikings grab the top spot for the first time since a hot start last season thanks to the best defense in the NFL. They rank in the Top 3 in Scoring Defense, Total Defense, Rush Defense, Pass Defense, and 3rd Down Defense, and have been getting more than enough offensive support from Case Keenum and their rushing attack.Since Week 10, Keenum leads the NFL with a 111.0 Passer Rating, and the Vikings are 8-0, on the year, when running it at least 30 times (0-3 otherwise). Minnesota is the best team in the NFL after 15 weeks. 8. Jacksonville Jaguars – Jacksonville clinched a playoff berth with a blowout win over the Texans, and have been dominant defensively.  They lead the NFL with 51 Sacks, haven’t allowed a Passer Rating of 90 yet this year, and haven’t allowed a Completion Percentage of 60 in 9 straight games. Blake Bortles has been playing the best football of his career with a 128.6 Passer Rating in his last 3 with 7 TD’s, and  0 INT’s. On the year, the Jags are 8-0 when Bortles doesn’t throw a pick. Jacksonville is for real, but will likely have to win games at Pittsburgh and New England in the playoffs, which is a brutal road. 2. Los Angeles Rams – The Rams boat raced division rival Seattle in what Colin called a changing of the guard in the NFC West. MVP candidate Todd Gurley is 2nd in the NFL with 1,817 Total Scrimmage Yards and a league-high 17 TD’s. Jared Goff has thrown multiple TD passes in 4 straight games. L.A. also leads the NFC in sacks in their last 4 games with 19. The Rams are more than a great story. They have playmakers everywhere, and are a legit threat to win it all. 3. New England Patriots – New England likely clinched home field advantage throughout the playoffs with a win in Pittsburgh thanks to superior situational awareness (and luck), but Tom Brady has struggled in his last 3 games, with 4 INT’s, a 75 Passer Rating, and only 2 touchdown passes.As a team, New England has failed to gain 400 Yards of offense in their last 2 games, after gaining 400+ in 5 of their previous 6. The pass defense has also allowed an opposing Passer Rating of 111.4 in their last 2 games, after allowing an average passer rating of 75.4 during their 8-game win streak.Even if there are some bad trends, the road to the Super Bowl is now headed through Foxboro. Belichick and Brady will be ready.last_img read more