21 Dec

Main Street Glenties to close for two days during Harvest Fair

first_imgThe Main Street of Glenties will be closed to traffic on Thursday 12th September and Sunday 15th September to facilitate events for the Glenties Harvest Fair.The road will be temporarily closed from 8am-9pm on Thursday for the Harvest Fair Day, as over 150 market stalls are set up on the street alongside street entertainers.The road will close again from 12noon-9pm on Sunday for the festival parade and entertainment. Donegal County Council has planned the following diversions for traffic: • Traffic from Donegal Town (R262) will be diverted left onto the N56 at Kilraine continuing on to Hillhead, Ardara and from there divert right onto the R261 continuing on this route until rejoining the N56 at Maas.• Traffic from Ardara/Killybegs will be diverted left onto the R261 at Hillhead, Ardara continuing on this route until rejoining the N56 at Maas.• Traffic from Lettermacaward/Dungloe will be diverted right on to the R261 at Maas and continue on this route rejoining the N56 at Hillhead, Ardara.• Traffic from Letterkenny/Ballybofey (R250) will be diverted right onto the N56 at Glenties Grotto and rejoin the N56 at Hillhead, Ardara via the R261 at Maas• Traffic intending to use the R253 will be diverted onto the R252 at the R253/R252 junction at Glenmore and are advised that access to Glenties is not possible via this route Main Street Glenties to close for two days during Harvest Fair was last modified: September 10th, 2019 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Glentiesroad closurelast_img read more

21 Dec

Councillor slams decision to refuse John Downey bail

first_imgA Donegal County Councillor has slammed the arrest and detention of Co. Donegal man John Downey as ‘outrageous’. The Creeslough man was extradited to Northern Ireland from the Republic of Ireland earlier this month.The 67-year-old was refused bail yesterday amid fears he could flee before any trial for the car bomb attack which killed Ulster Defence Regiment members Alfred Johnston and James Eames in Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh. The High Court Judge in Belfast said on Tuesday that Mr Downey was a “real and substantial risk” to abscond if granted bail. Speaking following the ruling, local councillor Cllr Michael Cholm Mac Giolla Easbuig, said: “The ongoing detention of 67-year-old John Downing is outrageous. “Refusing him bail is inexcusable if only because, in light of the Dublin government’s decision to extradite him, he has no-where to go.“Moreover, the charges and alleged evidence are without any merit.  “The recent BBC Spotlight programme, ‘The Troubles’ has detailed not only how British authorities colluded with loyalist death squads but that physical and forensic evidence had either been removed or contaminated. “How on earth can the British State maintain the integrity of what it claims as evidence – supposedly gathered almost a half-century ago – in the John Downey case.”He added that he should be released and be given an apology by the Irish Government. Councillor slams decision to refuse John Downey bail was last modified: October 23rd, 2019 by Shaun KeenanShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:arrestCreesloughJohn Downeylast_img read more

18 Dec

South Africa and Far East to discuss poaching

first_imgWhite rhino (Ceratotherium simum) inthe Kruger National Park  The SouthAfrican government is planning to clampdown heavily on wildlife poachers, andespecially those who kill rhino. (Image: Wikimedia Commons)  MEDIA CONTACTS • Sputnik RatauEnvironmental Affairs media liaison officer+27 12 336 8790 or +27 82 874 2942 RELATED ARTICLES • Wildlife poachers to be taken down • Black rhinos return to Serengeti • New unit to rescue rhinos • Kruger’s animal populations growing• Rescuing the white rhinoMinister of Environmental Affairs Buyelwa Sonjica delivered the keynote address at the Rhino Summit, which was held at the Reserve Bank’s conference centre in Pretoria on 5 and 6 October.The summit’s aim was to address the tragic surge in rhino poaching incidents that has rocked Southern Africa in the last few months.Sonjica reaffirmed her department’s commitment to eradicating rhino poaching, and also mentioned planned future talks between South Africa and Far East countries including Vietnam, China and Japan, to discuss ways in which to bring the illegal wildlife trade in those regions under control.The summit, which was also intended as a review of the effectiveness of current anti-poaching efforts, forms part of the implementation of the so-called Strategy for the Safety and Security of Rhinoceros Populations in South Africa.Also in attendance were Environmental Affairs Director-general Nosipho Ngcaba, the deputy director-general for biodiversity and conservation Fundisile Mketeni, and representatives of various law enforcement agencies, NGOs, and national parks.SA united against poaching“It is indeed a great honour and a privilege for me to address you at this important event in the history of conservation in our country,” said Sonjica in her speech.“I’m standing here with mixed feelings – of excitement and sadness – given the context of the issues that have prompted this gathering. I’m sad because the country’s proud track record on rhino conservation is being undermined by the senseless killing of rhino and its associated Illegal wildlife trafficking.“On the other hand, I’m excited to note that the country is united in its resolve to fight this unfortunate scourge and that tremendous progress is being made from all fronts to ensure that South Africa remains a beacon of hope in conservation management.“South Africa is recognised internationally as a significant role player in rhino conservation because we currently have a proud track record of conserving more rhino than any other country. We are also playing a major role in helping other countries to re-establish their rhino populations.“Allow me to give you a bit of background and remind you of the history of rhino conservation in South Africa. The rhino population in South Africa was on the brink of extinction in the early 1960s, but at the end of 2007 South Africa had conserved 35% of Africa’s black rhino and 93% of Africa’s white rhino respectively.“The net annual growth rate of the white rhino population in South Africa is 6.6%. South Africa currently has a population of approximately 19 000 white rhino and 1 750 black rhino. From that picture, it is evident that we have made tremendous strides in rhino conservation, especially white rhino.“Unfortunately the rhino population in South Africa is now being threatened by an upsurge in the illegal killing of rhinos and the leakage of illegally obtained rhino horn stocks into the international illegal trade.“Throughout the years there have been successful breakthroughs in rhino poaching investigations by the many law enforcement agencies in South Africa. However from 2008 onwards rhino poaching has escalated at an alarming rate, as has the leakage of both legal and illegal rhino horns held in the various private and government stockpiles with no indication of decreasing.”Sonjica informed the audience that to date, 227 rhinos had been illegally killed on South African soil since the beginning of the year, and that should this trend continue, over 300 animals will have met an unnecessary death by the end of 2010.“The Department of Environmental Affairs is aware that only a well-coordinated effort by all law enforcement agencies in South Africa will make an impact on the illegal killing of the rhinos. The department developed and implemented various initiatives over the last two years to address this concerning scourge and its subsequent trade in illegally obtained rhinoceros horns.“Among other actions, these interventions include:The publishing of a national moratorium on the sale of individual rhinoceros horns and any derivates or products within South Africa in 2009 to ensure that no legally obtained horns end up in the illegal trade;The publishing of national norms and standards for the marking of rhino horn and the hunting of white rhinoceros for trophy hunting purposes on 20 July 2009 to further regulate marking and hunting of rhinoceros;The establishment of a national, multi-departmental biodiversity investigators forum in March 2009 which coordinates and acts as a contact point where all biodiversity related law enforcement information is collected, accessed, distributed and tasked to specific subgroups of the forum;South Africa was nominated to participate in the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) Rhinoceros Enforcement Task Force;The Department of Environmental Affairs has established a Directorate: Biodiversity Enforcement to coordinate and investigate biodiversity related crimes on a national basis;The establishment of an interim National Wildlife Crime Reaction Unit or NWCRU within the department was approved in February this year. The unit will be fully operational once all the secondment process is finalised;The publishing of the national regulations for CITES wild fauna and flora in March 2010 for the control of legal international trade in CITES-listed species including rhino;Approval and implementation of a National Strategy for the Safety and Security of Rhinoceros Populations and Horn Stocks in South Africa.Working together“Ladies and gentlemen, the establishment of the interim NWCRU is aimed at responding to the current spate of wildlife crimes and more specifically the upsurge of rhino poaching and smuggling of rhino horn.“This unit is driven by the Department of Environmental Affairs, with the South African National Parks leading its coordination on behalf of the Department. The NWCRU will, among others, react immediately when a serious wildlife crime has been committed and be able to detect and investigate smuggling of wildlife and wildlife products.Sonjica said that the South African Police Service (SAPS) has deployed a dedicated endangered species coordinator in each province, and that an elite team of the SAPS Hawks will focus on rhino poaching related activities around the country.The Hawks, also known as the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, are a special branch of the SAPS which arose from the now-defunct – and highly successful – Directorate for Special Operations, or Scorpions.“We are happy with the cooperation from the National Prosecution Authorities who have designated prosecutors in province and nationally to deal with organised environmental crime matters,” said Sonjica.“Owing to the increase in rhino poaching, we now have the Strategy for the Safety and Security of Rhinoceros Populations in South Africa. This strategy is aimed at providing us with guiding principles to inform decision-making processes, strategic planning and operations aimed at reducing the effects of poaching on rhino species and to ensure the successful arrest, conviction and sentencing of poachers, illegal traders and crime syndicates operating locally at park level, regionally, nationally and internationally. Although we are tackling this challenge locally, we are also taking our efforts beyond our country’s borders.“We are engaging our Southern African Development Community (SADC) partners on a regular basis through the SADC Rhino and Elephant Security Group which meets annually to discuss issues related to the safety and security of rhinos and elephants in the region.“The Rhino Management Group which consists of countries in the region is another important establishment which facilitates the implementation of the SADC Regional Rhino Strategy. We believe that working together with our counterparts in the region is the only way to collectively deal with this scourge since these marauding bandits have no respect for any political boundaries.International talks“Also as part of our international engagement programme, I am happy to announce that we are also planning a bilateral visit to Vietnam to discuss issues of concern regarding the smuggling of rhino horn and the legal export of sport hunted white rhino trophies. The Department of Environmental Affairs is also in consultation with the Department of International Relations and Cooperation on bilateral engagements with China and Japan on wildlife law enforcement, capacity building, and improved technology to aid in detection of illegally traded wildlife products.“The efforts of Lead SA, Jacaranda FM, conservation NGOs and others to highlight the problem, fundraise or raise awareness to the general public symbolised that the collaborative strength of public private partnership can overcome any challenge. We should strengthen our partnerships in addressing this scourge and other similar challenges.“I must hasten to add that it is my expectation that this summit will augment the current initiatives against rhino poaching. It should afford stakeholders an opportunity to reflect on the current interventions and harness further political and broader stakeholder commitment.“In its deliberations, the summit should consider to the following:The role of the NWCRU and the Strategy for the Safety and Security of Rhinoceros Populations in South Africa;Critical analysis and review of the current interventions that we have introduced or led;Development of new and/or complementary plans to augment current interventions;Collaboration, mobilisation and harnessing of stakeholder support against poaching;Analysis of the relationship between the rate of rhino poaching and current regulatory and strategic practices, including a moratorium on the sale of individual rhinoceros horns and any derivates or products within South Africa;Reflection on the legislative and policy imperatives informing the current practices in the management of rhino population in the country. .“I am expecting robust engagements that are constructive and useful to take us another level. We must come out of this summit with answers to the following questions:Do we need to do anything different with regards collaboration and stakeholder participation?Are the current legislative, regulatory and policy tools adequate and effective?Are the penalties for offenders matching the scale of the offence and deter the would-be offenders?Are current strategies and interventions adequate?What can be done at the sub-regional, regional and international level?Are there any gaps in our conservation and sustainable utilization models or approaches?Is there a need for adjustments of policies or not?“Basically, we need to ascertain if there are any challenges with the regulatory, strategic and operational machinery and if so what needs to be reviewed?“South Africa’s biodiversity belongs to all South Africans. Government mainly assumes the legal mandate to protect biodiversity, but protection of our rich flora and fauna for current and future generations is the business of every patriotic citizen not just government.“It is also my pleasure to announce that the interim NWCIU would as of today, officially start operating. Allow me as well to officially launch the Strategy for the Safety and Security of Rhinoceros Populations in South Africa by handing over a copy to Nosipho Ngcaba.“Ladies and gentlemen, I wish all a fruitful engagement as part of a collaborative efforts to address this challenge before it is too late.“I thank you!”Source: South African government onlinelast_img read more

12 Dec

Post-Production Tip: Isolating and Hiding Noise in Your Footage

first_imgLoad in ResolveWe’ve loaded our clip into Resolve’s media pool, added it to a timeline, and are in the color tab. Now, we click the “Nodes” tab 3 times. (No, I don’t know why once wasn’t enough.)We’re going to select the starter node and apply some basic corrections to bring this clip to proper exposure.Once we’ve gotten it dialed in, I’m creating a new node by pressing Alt+S for Windows or Option+S on Mac.Create Layer NodeFrom here, we’ll right-click the new node, navigate to the Nodes expander menu, and select Layer Node.Our single node has split in two, and a “Layer Mixer” now appears after the layer nodes.Layer Nodes allow the single node grade path to split into two distinct chains for separate, concurrent grading. There are endless uses for the layer mixer, including separating highlights from shadows for work on each individually. Today, we’re using the layer mixer to separate the Chroma and Luma channels to apply more targeted noise reduction without losing too much detail in the shot.The majority of distracting noise comes from the chroma channels, whereas the noise in the luminance channel usually has a more organic structure and motion similar to film grain. Over-reducing the luminance channel results in extremely mucky and unusable footage.Let’s split our video to start managing this noise. There are dozens of ways to reduce noise in your footage, but today, we’re diving into DaVinci Resolve for one of the most power noise reduction techniques around.In this article, we’ll take a look at DaVinci Resolve for some powerful tricks for isolating and reducing distracting noise without losing detail in your shot.In a previous article on noise reduction, we covered many of the basic components of noise in footage. We’ll keep working with the same still frame from the underexposed clip I shot for a documentary a few years back for even more image polishing today. Reduce Chroma NoiseClick the bottom (chroma) node, and navigate to the Motion Effects panel of the Noise Reduction controls.To begin noise reduction, select the number of frames for temporal analysis. Now, unlink the luma and chroma controls on both temporal and spatial reduction before adjusting the chroma reduction on temporal and then spatial controls.From here, it’s just a matter of dialing in the sliders while watching the areas with the noise that you want to reduce. Based on personal experience, I usually find the best results when the temporal threshold controls are at about half the value of the spatial controls.Now we’ve selected the top (luma) layer node and are applying a touch of reduction to the luminance channel. I want to bring down a little bit of the grain without giving the footage a smoothed look.I think I’m pleased with these results for now, so let’s move to the blur panel.Blur ChromaEven without the Noise Reduction of the full Resolve suite, we can still bring down the distracting chroma flutter in this footage.All we do is select the chroma layer, then navigate to the Blur/Sharpen panel. We’re blurring the information in the chroma channel. This helps to virtually expand the grain structure of the color noise, which can help to significantly reduce the appearance of noise in most footage.Sharpen Y ChannelWith the chroma noise blurred, we can actually go back into the luminance node to add a bit of sharpening if blurring the chroma channel has softened the image up at all.Adjusting ResultsThe last thing I want to do before checking my work is to add another node after the Layer Mixer and use it to make a few minor adjustments to bring the image up just a little more and really emphasize our noise reduction.Before and AfterAll that’s left now is to compare the before and after Noise Reduction to make sure we haven’t overdone it. Desaturate Top NodeTo isolate the luminance channel, click the top layer node and navigate to any pane of the Color Wheels panel. All we’re doing is sliding the saturation all the way to zero. Don’t worry if you aren’t seeing any changes yet.Remove Y InformationNow, select the bottom layer node and navigate to the Primaries Bars of the Color Wheels panel. All we’re doing here is working in the Gain controls and sliding the Y slider from 1.00 all the way down.The image is crazy now, but we’re about three clicks away from normal.Change Blend ModeTo get the image back to its recognizable form, go to the Layer Mixer, right-click, navigate to the Composite Mode expander, and select Add.Now, you’ve successfully separated out the chrominance and luminance channels and are ready to begin noise reduction.Noise ReductionOne of the main differences between the free and paid version of Resolve is the Noise Reduction Panel. (For the Resolve Lite users, hang with me: we’ll get to a way to reduce the chroma noise without the Noise Reduction panel in just a second.)The Noise Reduction panel in Resolve is split into two sections: Temporal and Spatial NR. Here’s a quick primer for readers unfamiliar with the difference in the two techniques.Spatial Noise ReductionSpatial NR evaluates common problematic frequencies for noise (high, medium, low). These frequencies are “scanned” in each frame and noise reduction applies in the specified regions of the frame.Simply, Spatial NR looks at each pixel of a still frame, locates noise, and turns the noise down.Temporal Noise ReductionTemporal NR examines the noise profile across multiple frames by “watching” how each pixel’s values change over time. Because most noise is random, Temporal NR can usually quite easily detect the fluttery nature of the most common types of noise.A blend of both techniques usually yields the best results, so that’s what we’re doing today.center_img Getting Set Up I think this is looking really great. We’ve brought the exposure up to great levels and reduced the noise so it shouldn’t be a distraction.Resolve’s ability to quickly separate out the chroma and luma channels into two distinct layers makes it one of the most powerful tools for noise reduction on the market today. And you can get similar results using the free version. I think that everyone who handles any type of video post-production should have a working grasp of the workflow for noise reduction covered in this article.Do you have a folder of unusable, noisy footage collecting digital dust on your hard drive? Fire up Resolve and see what you can do to fix it!Cover image via Pro_Vector.Looking for more post-production tips and tricks? Check out these articles.Improve Your Masks with Hue, Saturation, and Luminance QualifiersUnderstanding Image Noise in Your Film and Video ProjectsPost-Production Tips: How to Save Corrupted FootageUnderstanding the Opacity Blend Modes in Adobe Premiere ProHow to Make 3D Split-Depth Videos in Adobe After Effectslast_img read more

3 Dec

Fine slapped on Sai Baba Trust in Shirdi over payment default

first_imgThe Revenue department has slapped a whopping ₹4 crore as fine on the Shri Saibaba Sansthan (Trust) for allegedly defaulting on revenue dues on a portion of land dating back to the British Raj.Speaking to The Hindu, Shirdi Sub-Divisional Officer Kundan Sonawane said that the disputed land of 27 gunthas (less than one acre) was acquired by some of the devotees on rent near the temple complex premises during colonial times. While the land belonged to the State, the devotees either gave it away to the trust or sold it off a few years after Sai Baba died in 1918.Put on noticeSpeaking to The Hindu, Shirdi Sub-Divisional Officer Kundan Sonawane confirmed that his office had sent a notice to the Saibaba Sansthan Trust.“A few years after Sai Baba’s ‘Mahasamadhi’ in 1918, these devotees either donated or sold it (the land) off without due permission from the State. The land in question encompasses the iconic Dikshit wada, the Lendi Baug [the garden created and watered by Sai Baba himself] and the museum. So, we have sent the notice to the Sai Baba trust to legalise the possession of this land by paying back the revenue due to the government,” Mr. Sonawane said.He informed that the nebulous ownership of the disputed land was unearthed by local journalist Pramod Aher while the latter was researching his book Shirdi Gazeteer: untold stories. Mr. Aher then brought the matter to the attention of Revenue department authorities.Mr. Sonawane further said that if the Trust failed to clarify the matter within a week, a legal probe would be initiated into the affair.Officials at the trust could not be reached for comment.last_img read more

9 Nov

AC Milan referred over alleged FFP breaches

first_imgMilan AC Milan referred over alleged FFP breaches Jack Davies 03:39 5/23/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(3) milan - CROPPED Getty Images Milan Serie A Milan v Fiorentina Fiorentina UEFA’s Adjudicatory Chamber will review the case after the Serie A side invested more than €200 million in their squad over the past year AC Milan have been referred to UEFA’s Adjudicatory Chamber over alleged breaches of Financial Fair Flay regulations.The Italian giants have been monitored in relation to potential infringements for several months and had an application for a voluntary agreement to restructure their finances rejected by UEFA’s Club Financial Control Body in December.Milan invested more than €200 million (£175m/$236m) in their playing squad following the takeover by Chinese investors Rossoneri Sport Investment Lux last year and their ability to repay a loan by October is central to UEFA’s concerns. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Sorry, Cristiano! Pjanic is Juventus’ most important player right now If Milan are eventually penalised over the breaches, exclusion from the Europa League could be an option at the governing body’s disposal.”The Investigatory Chamber of the UEFA Club Financial Control Body (CFCB) has decided to refer Italian club AC Milan to the Adjudicatory Chamber of the CFCB for breach of the Financial Fair Play regulations, in particular the break-even requirement,” read a UEFA statement.”After careful examination of all the documentation and explanations provided by the club, the CFCB Investigatory Chamber considers that the circumstances of the case do not allow the conclusion of a settlement agreement.”In particular, the CFCB Investigatory Chamber is of the opinion that, among other factors, there remains uncertainties in relation to the refinancing of the loan and the notes to be paid back in October 2018.”The Adjudicatory Chamber will make a decision on this case in due course.”The CFCB Investigatory Chamber will further communicate in June its other decisions in relation to the monitoring of the clubs under investigation or under settlement agreement.”last_img read more