Posts Tagged ‘Tournament’
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This is a video of an alleged streaker breaking onto the American Ninja Warrior obstacle course set up on the Las Vegas strip and efficiently running through many of it prior to being dealt with by safety. Now I’m not saying the show was in on this, however it absolutely was. I’m not even convinced man is really naked and not just wearing a flesh-colored banana hammock. You think I cannot discriminate between a genuine penis and a skin-tone swimwear through a fuzzy censor box? Please– you know how the investigators in all those CSI programs collect ideas by magically enhancing video footage? That spunk’s based upon my actual vision.
Hit the jump for the video.
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There’s no longer any such thing as Sony Ericsson — it’s all just Sony now — but try telling that to the estimated 300,000+ attendees of the Sony Ericsson Open tennis tournament. Starting Monday, ESPN2, the Tennis Channel and CBS will all be broadcasting “73.5 thrilling hours of domestic coverage” from an event with a zombie sponsor, whose banners and defunct logos will no doubt feature in almost every shot. Quite possibly the best part? While Sony Ericsson originally signed the event for just four years back in 2006, last year it renewed its sponsorship through 2014. If you’d like to show show your solidarity, it’s not hard: the going rate for a LiveView is just $ 40 on eBay right now.
Over the last few years, we’ve seen technology start to play an increasingly disruptive role in both primary and secondary education. There’s still a long, long way to go, but schools are becoming more receptive to integrating mobile, web, and cloud technologies as a means to improve the learning experience in and out of the classroom. As more and more startups jump into the game, we’ve seen a rise in “blended learning,” which aims to increase the productivity of teachers and students through the strategic integration of technology into the classroom.
If you attended a university with large classes, you may be familiar with those hand-held clickers that professors use to take polls from students during class discussions. One Canadian startup, called Top Hat Monocle has been using the old clicker model as an entry point into university classrooms, as it attempts to bring that model a serious dose of more modern technology — with some gamification to boot.
To do so, the startup is capitalizing on the profusion of laptops and mobile devices among university students, having built a web and mobile-based classroom response solution that looks to give students a more engaging in-class experience while giving professors realtime feedback on the degree to which their students are understanding the material. For those unfamiliar, Top Hat lets professors take advantage of polls, quizzes, and interactive demonstrations in class, while allowing students to participate on any device they own, whether it’s a smartphone, a feature phone, an iPad or a laptop.
For those with feature phones, Top Hat offers an SMS-based response system, while all others access its platform through the web. Students can ask questions during lectures without interrupting teachers and get instant feedback from other students. Those answers are then saved, allowing them to monitor their own progress, study past work, etc. That’s where Top Hat is looking to go beyond just being a simple polling mechanism for higher education.
Professors can offer interactive demos students can watch on their laptops or smartphones in class, or save for homework, choosing from a library of pre-existing demos or designing their own. They can ask open-ended questions and reward students for participating or helping each other out, upload and share files (course notes, lab materials, etc.), and take advantage of the fact that Top Hat automatically grades and tracks all answers submitted in its “Gradebook.” Professors can access the tool on their desktops, integrating the system into their presentations to display poll results, demos, etc. as they lecture.
This means that there’s no hardware to buy or install, and the on-boarding process is fairly simple. And this is how Top Hat is gaining entry into higher ed classrooms: Rather than selling its product to universities themselves, they’ve been using a direct sales force to go straight to teachers, side-stepping the software pricing model by offering the solution for free to teachers, while charging students to use it. In a sense it’s an alternative (or replacement) to textbooks, and it’s pretty affordable for students at $ 20 a semester or $ 38 for five years.
And it seems to be working. While the startup initially launched in 2009, it’s largely flown under the radar, in spite of finding some decent traction over the last year. After raising over $ 1 million in early angel funding, the startup now has over 60,000 paying customers in over 75 universities. It grew its team to 22, while managing to remain profitable, as it saw $ 1.4 million in revenues for 2011, which represented 500 percent year-over-year growth. The executive team said they expect to hit $ 4 million in revenues by 2013, and are currently raising a second round of venture capital to support that growth.
But, perhaps more important than that, is the fact that professors are loving the tool because it replaces “clickers” with a much more useful suite of tools that make their jobs easier, while the startup reports that classes have seen a 3 to 5 percent improvement in their average grades.
In the big picture, higher education is an easier market for Top Hat to target, with shorter sales cycles as universities largely operate on the semester system — as compared to high school and K-12, where classes tend to run over longer periods of time. What’s more, at the university level, professors have a bit more freedom in choosing the material, setting curriculum, and choosing what types of technologies to integrate into the classroom experience. There Top Hat can have a greater influence on the learning experience: “All told, we really want to own the relationship between the teacher and the student,” said CEO Mike Silagadze and CRO Andrew D’Souza.
Providing classrooms with an easy-to-integrate solution that makes learning more interactive, more fun, and more social, the startup has opened the door, and there’s obviously a lot more it can add to that experience once it has the trust of students and professors and has truly shown that its model is effective in hiking engagement levels.
That’s why, just as we’ve seen so many other consumer-facing startups and companies do — across verticals — Top Hat is looking to introduce some game-ification into the mix. The team has developed a feature called the “Tournament Homework Module,” which it’s testing in beta now and hopes to launch publicly in the next month. As the name suggests, it turns homework into a week-long competition, or tournament, in the hopes that bringing game dynamics to problem sets and workbooks will increase the retention of material, raise grades, and maybe make homework a little more fun.
It works like this: Professors set up a question bank and a tournament question bank, and leading up the tournament (let’s say at the end of the week), students practice questions from the first set and receive practice scores. On the day of the tournament, students log in and are automatically paired with other students at their level of ability, proceeding through rounds of problem solving, until there’s a winner. The top five are publicly displayed.
While this may irk some, the idea is that knowing that they will be publicly competing with winners to be displayed on a class scoreboard incentivizes students to actually practice problem sets and learn the material. So far, the executives say, the response has been “remarkable,” and apparently students and professors are going for it. It will be interesting to see how classrooms across the country react to this kind of game-ification. If the way the rest of the web is going is any indication, it may not be long before tournaments are popping up at your alma mater.
For more, check out Top Hat at home here, or check out the video below:
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Google buys Motorola Mobility, League of Legends announces a 5 million dollar tournament & is an Austin Powers 4 movie on its way?! All, on the IGN Daily Fix. IGN’s YouTube is just a taste of our content! Check out our other game channels: Call of Duty – youtube.com Zelda – youtube.com Battlefield – youtube.com Halo – youtube.com Street Fighter – youtube.com And more! Script: Happy Steel Day, everybody! Naomi here with your Fix for August 15th. Yep, today marks the 14th Anniversary of the classic superhero movie, Steel. Never forget. Big news for Google! The software giant announced their plans to buy Motorola Mobility for 12.5 billion dollars. As you probably already know, Motorola Mobility makes cell phones and the Xoom tablet. And Google makes Android, which is software that you put on cell phones and tablets. Sounds like a good match to me. Anyway, the multibillion dollar deal is still in its early stages, so it will still take awhile before it’s set in stone. No word on how this will affect Motorola’s cell-phone lineup, but you can probably expect a bunch of Android phones in the future. Attention League of Legends fans — it’s time to stop sucking. Riot Games announced details for League of Legends Season Two. Hold on to your butts because Season 2 will have a prize pool of MILLION dollars. If you remember, Season One had a prize pool for 0k so this is a preeeetty big upgrade. Season 2 is scheduled for this fall and will feature weekly live streams in both …
Video Rating: 4 / 5
Hopkins FIRST Robotics team preps for district tournament
Hopkins sophomore Cory Fein grasped the controls, one in each hand, and guided the 100 pound robot into place. In a matter of seconds, he maneuvered the machine through the hallways of Hopkins High School, picking up three inflatable tubes, placing them on pegs set at three different heights.
Read more on MLive.com
Ronan Robotics Team Top In Nation
He’s a scrappy little fellow with great balance and tremendous dexterity. He’s a robot built by students at Ronan High School. The team isn’t just state champion. It has the highest qualifying score in the nation.
Read more on KCFW Kalispell
Biological weapons, robotics, fungi abound in Paul McEuen’s debut thriller novel, ‘Spiral’
Nowhere in Paul McEuen’s long list of research accomplishments is there any mention of fungi, or microrobotics — or biological weapons, for that matter.
Read more on Cornell News Service
Marvel vs. Capcom 3 comes out in two weeks—woo!—and that means itâ€™s time to throw your standard-issue controller in the trash and pony up for a proper arcade stick. Mad Catz has one that may interest you called the Marvel Vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds Arcade FightStick: Tournament Edition. The name is quite the mouthful, yes.
Mad Catz says the stick is made from â€œarcade-qualityâ€ components, as supplied by Sanwa Denshi. Itâ€™s a Japanese-style ball joystick (not the bat youâ€™d find on American arcades 20 years ago), and there’s a turbo mode there for you.
Or you can just look at this photo.
Only 5,000 will be made, and itâ€™ll retail for $ 159. Xbox 360 and PS3, of course (that’s the 360 version up there).
The one Mad Cat arcade stick I bought, the high-end one for Street Fighter IV, worked quite well; I canâ€™t recall any complaints. Well, one: I looked like a child sitting on the couch with it sitting on my lap. Iâ€™ll grow up one of these days.
We’re still a hot 11+ years away from the 2022 Fifa World Cup, but the parade of moaning continues. The latest bit of gossip suggests that the tournament could be played during the wintertime in order to combat the extreme temperatures usually present in Qatar during the summertime. So much for developing a new stadium cooling technology that could then be exported to other countries.
What’s going on is that various people in and around football (I’m calling soccer football in the post for convenience’s sake) have come out against the Qatar World Cup not because of Qatar’s spotty record vis-Ã -vis women, homosexuals, workers’ rights, etc. but because it’s so hot there during the summer. (Never mind that it was hot as Hades during the 1994 World Cup here in the US!) The Qatar bid has promised to develop a new type of cooling technology to ensure the stadia aren’t 8 million degrees as the players are scampering around the pitch. That’s not enough, it seems.
FIFPro, the international footballers’ union, has come out against the idea of trying to play the World Cup in Qatar during the summer. (You’d think these complaints would have surfaced before Sepp Blatter’s big announcement a few weeks ago!) Instead, the union has come out in favor of playing the tournament in the wintertime, to be played in January, 2022.
Needless to say the various professional leagues around the world would have to re-jigger their schedule that year in order to accommodate a January World Cup. (The World Cup usually occurs in June.)
Aresnal coach ArsÃ¨ne Wenger has gone even further, asking that the England’s Premier League be played from February to November every year. Granted, this is more to do with England’s inability to deal with a few inches of snow, forcing the cancellation of several games at the weekend, but it shows that a top-tier coach is fine with the idea of adjusting the playing schedule to meet changing conditions.
And if Wenger, who generally likes to moan about every. little. thing. is fine with changing the calendar, why shouldn’t we be?
Me? I honestly don’t care when the World Cup is played. As long as it happens, I’m cool.
As anyone with working pair of eyes knows, EA released FIFA 11 yesterday. Far more important than Madden to EA’s global bottom line, FIFA 11 is the company’s latest chance for you take take Real Madrid to Wembley. Well, unless your name is Pedro LeÃ³n!
So the game came out yesterday, and EA has a fun little campaign behind it. There’s going to be some sort of tournament all over the country with players from the MLS. It kicked off last night here in New York with a few players from the New York Red Bulls.
And to be totally honest, the only players I’m familiar with on the Red Bulls are Thierry Henry and Rafa MÃ¡rquez; I mainly follow the European leagues.
I still haven’t bought the game yet, so don’t expect a â€œreviewâ€ or anything like that. I played the game a bit last night (and at other EA events here and there), and can safely say this: FIFA 11 is EA’s best effort yet. Not exactly breaking news, but there must have been something in that water at EA when they were making it because they definitely did a good job this time around.
Official Street Fighter IV Arcade FightStick: Tournament Edition by Mad Catz, Inc