This Virtual Pupper Could Help Prevent Dog Attacks

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first_imgStay on target Driver Finds Dog With Throat Cut, Mouth Duct-Taped in OhioWatch: Dog Rescued After Collapsing From Heatstroke During Hike Dogs are perfect. This is an objective fact. But sometimes, humans don’t really understand what dogs are trying to communicate, and we can miss their warning signs. And dogs, just like people and many mammals will lash out if they feel their boundaries have been disrespected.But thanks to a new project at the University of Liverpool, a virtual dog could help people learn early signs and build a better, more comprehensive understanding of how and why dogs communicate what they do. More importantly, this education could help ease the stress on our wonderful friends, and help prevent those sometimes not-so-friendly nibbles.At Liverpool’s Virtual Engineering Centre (VEC), a team has created a virtual reality program that teaches people about what doggy body language to look out for. Many thousands of people are admitted to the hospital each year for dog bites, and that’s obviously those that just check in. Truth is, while dogs are our best friends, as the more intelligent of the two, it’s kind of on us to figure out how best to interact with them. After all, they’ve really just got those cute butt-faces, and I dunno how we can expect them to take on extra emotional labor when they’ve gotta run around, and be cute, and tilt their heads all day. It’s hard out there for a doggo, y’know?The program is pretty straightforward. The human enters into the virtual environment with a digital pooch, and then as the user gets closer, the dog’s body language gradually changes. Aligned with the “Canine Ladder of Aggression” a standardized set of traits that most canines display in pretty distinct order before they attack. The idea is to catch the subtler signs –like licking of the chops — before you get to the toothy bits.“This was a really interesting project to work on with a lot of exciting potential for the future,” team lead Iain Cant said. “The next steps will look to enhance the detail within the immersive environment to ensure the simulation is as realistic as possible. Future developments will also show a wider range of dog behaviors and the dog’s reactions to user behavior.”We at Geek are fans of all good boys and get especially upset when they are hurt in movies. We are also into nightmare robo versions of doggos.  And for heck’s sake let your pooch scratch the ground after they make, it’s not their fault. For all the best news on the best boys follow here. Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey.last_img

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World Cup 2019: Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma set flurry of records vs Australia

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Special Education Policy Before Cabinet

first_img Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Senator the Hon. Ruel Reid, says the Special Education Policy, aimed at providing a framework to meet the educational needs of special students, is now before Cabinet for approval.He was speaking at the 2018 Annual Conference of the Association of Principals and Vice Principals of Secondary Schools held at the Jewel Grande Montego Bay Resort and Spa on October 14.The policy, drafted by the Ministry’s Special Education Unit, will complement the Disabilities Act, which makes provision to safeguard and enhance the welfare of persons with disabilities across Jamaica.Its two main goals are ensuring equity and access to educational opportunities; and to promote a system of inclusive education where possible.The policy seeks to protect the rights of children and youth with disabilities against discrimination in educational settings, and it promotes awareness of students’ right to quality education. In addition, it will ensure that students are provided with the necessary accommodations they need in the educational setting.Senator Reid noted that over the last academic year, the Ministry increased the support for students with special needs by providing additional caregivers through the Housing, Opportunity, Production and Employment (HOPE) Programme.“Over 60 families are benefiting from this programme, which allows students with special needs to remain in their community schools and be educated among their peers while receiving the support needed to function effectively in the school environment,” he explained.“This includes several students in rural Jamaica who are blind and would have otherwise had to board in Kingston to attend the (Salvation Army) School for the Blind,” he noted.The Minister said, further, that a new curriculum for Students with Moderate to Profound Intellectual Disabilities was recently launched in partnership with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).It addresses language and communication, mathematics, science, physical education, music and life skills.“This curriculum seeks to provide students with daily living skills… and a level of social skills that will assist him/her to interact appropriately with family and the wider community,” Senator Reid noted.Meanwhile, new special education centres were opened at Church Teachers’ College in Mandeville and Sam Sharp Teachers’ College in Montego Bay at the start of the new academic year.These, along with the Savanna-la-Mar Inclusive Academy in Westmoreland, and the Lyssons Centre of Excellence in St. Thomas, which were opened in 2017, add to the facilities established across the island that provide support for children with special needs.Senator Reid said the Ministry has undertaken to provide financial and technical support for a new programme at the School for Therapy Education and Parenting of Children with Multiple Disabilities (STEP Centre) in Kingston.“This programme targets students at the early-childhood level who have physical disabilities and are also visually impaired. The programme is intended to equip these students to transition to the primary level,” he noted.He said that the Special Education Unit provides Braille and large-print material for persons who are blind or visually impaired.In addition, students with special needs are able to receive accommodation for national examinations.This may include extended time, readers/writers, examination in alternative format (braille/large print), breaks or prompters,” he added, noting that a psycho-educational assessment report or a medical report must be presented with a request for accommodation on registering for a national exam. Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Senator the Hon. Ruel Reid, says the Special Education Policy, aimed at providing a framework to meet the educational needs of special students, is now before Cabinet for approval. The policy, drafted by the Ministry’s Special Education Unit, will complement the Disabilities Act, which makes provision to safeguard and enhance the welfare of persons with disabilities across Jamaica. Story Highlights He was speaking at the 2018 Annual Conference of the Association of Principals and Vice Principals of Secondary Schools held at the Jewel Grande Montego Bay Resort and Spa on October 14. last_img

Site Selected for New Halifax Elementary School

first_imgA site has been selected and approved for a new, modern school to replace LeMarchant-St. Thomas Elementary School in Halifax. The school will be built on the existing property, as submitted by the Halifax Regional School Board and approved by Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Karen Casey. “The current site represents the best option for students, teachers and staff,” said Ms. Casey. “We want to ensure that the students of LeMarchant-St. Thomas have access to a leading edge learning facility as soon as possible.” The Halifax Regional School Board will now establish a school steering team to begin the planning and design process. “We are so pleased that the site has been selected and that students and staff will remain in the location that is best for the community,” said Melinda Daye, chair of the Halifax Regional School Board. “Now the exciting part begins: planning a learning facility that will reflect all students’ needs.” The site approval will also allow the board to start working with the school community to plan for the relocation of the students currently attending LeMarchant-St. Thomas Elementary in September 2016. This will allow students to continue their studies while the new school is under construction.last_img

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