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Business Intelligence

diG Jamaica sat down with Raquel Seville, the CEO of B.I. Brainz (Caribbean), to get more insight into what Business Intelligence is. This is a growing field in Jamaica heavily utilized by companies like Digicel.

“Business Intelligence takes the guess work out of decision making. BETTER DECISIONS = BETTER QUALITY PRODUCTS AND SERVICES.” – Raquel Seville

It’s a fancy way of referring to the goal of getting actionable insights from company data. Essentially, the data should support some kind of decision making in the end. This type of intelligence helps persons to make decisions that are supported by fact and not fiction. Would you rather make an informed decision based on hard figures or one that is based on feeling?

Making decisions based on actual findings would effectively allow manufacturers to improve their marketing agendas and make better more useful and cost effective products. A company of note mentioned by Raquel was Digicel.

“A lot of the initiatives that companies are able to push is due to analysis of customer trends and target customers. This impacts how you market to them and how to appeal to a certain demographic.” – Raquel Seville

Business Intelligence tools vary widely and as such have a very broad spectrum. There are data specific tools , process specific tools , database repository tools and finally presentation tools. Presentation tools remain the most popular aspect of business intelligence. This may be due to it being used to explain trends to stakeholders.

Examples of BI Tools:

  • Data Specific Tools – This uses extraction transformed load tools (ETL) Informatica
  • Database Tools – Microsoft, Oracle, MySQL & Hadoo (which is designed for big data, more unstructured).
  • Presentation Tools – PowerBI, TaBleau , SAP BI tools, Qlik

Film & Technology

“The film industry brings people together, and so does technology. I see them as similar platforms.”
– Ashton Kutcher

Computer science (and technology in general) can be mixed with most if not all fields of interest. The entire world is moving towards technological advancements and integrations. One such mixed field is that of film and computer science. How do they relate you may ask? Here’s how!

Editing Suites
An essential part of any film is the editing done in post production. One has to use software to perfect video transitions, colour balance, lighting etc. This is a crucial part of making any camera work look exactly as intended and visually compelling. Post production software is developed and created by software engineers. What better way to create software fitted for cinematographers than to be a cinematographer yourself? This would also extend to photo editing software.

DSLR Camera Operating Systems
Though most may not realize, a camera is basically a mini – computer. It has its own firmware, ROM, processor, input, output, secondary storage devices etc. For any good computer to work it must have a solid operating system that can manage the various tasks required of the device in an efficient manner. Therefore, the camera will demand the same type of software. Again, software engineers would be more than welcomed here.

Facial Recognition
Think of a spy movie or real life crime cases: a bandit was in an area caught on camera and the police need to identify him. What do they draw for? Cameras and facial recognition software! This software can also implemented on a more small scale like unlocking a phone with bio-metrics but once again, software engineers are needed to help use photographic material (input) to create the desired output or inform decision making processes. Film and tech goes hand in hand once more!

There are many more examples such as 3D Printing and Image sensors but this should shed some light on the cross section between camera related fields such as film and technology.

World Mental Health Day 2018

On October 10th of each year, World Mental Health Day is celebrated. This year’s theme is ‘Young People and Mental Health in A Changing World’.

World Mental Health Day allows stakeholders to come together and decide on ways to mitigate the effects of mental health illnesses. The topic has been gaining traction recently as there has been an influx of articles in local publications around youth mental health such as Dr Christopher Tufton | Time To Commit To Mental HealthMental Meltdown: Youth Under Siege, and J’cans Don’t Kill Themselves’ – Hickling Downplays U-Report Poll In Which More Than 500 Jamaican Youths Said That They Have Considered Suicide.

Here is an excerpt from the World Health Organization’s website explaining why the theme was chosen for this year:

“Adolescence and the early years of adulthood are a time of life when many changes occur, for example changing schools, leaving home, and starting university or a new job. For many, these are exciting times. They can also be times of stress and apprehension however. In some cases, if not recognized and managed, these feelings can lead to mental illness. The expanding use of online technologies, while undoubtedly bringing many benefits, can also bring additional pressures, as connectivity to virtual networks at any time of the day and night grows. Many adolescents are also living in areas affected by humanitarian emergencies such as conflicts, natural disasters and epidemics. Young people living in situations such as these are particularly vulnerable to mental distress and illness.”

 

Read more about Mental Health here: https://www.moh.gov.jm/divisions-agencies/divisions/mental-health-unit/

 

6 Things You Need To Know Today

Your news in a nutshell

  1. Too early to tell Ja Moves success
  2. Gleaner ombudsman want to hear from readers
  3. Health Ministry strong on sugary drinks message
  4. Second cohort of HPV vaccines being administered
  5. Chucky Brown trial continues
  6. Guns issued in breach of FLA protocol still out there

Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton (second right)

1. Too early to tell Ja Moves success

Indicating that it was too early to determine the success of the popular Jamaica Moves Campaign, Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton believes the message has reached most if not all Jamaicans. The ministry has been taking the message of the importance of physical activity around the island, through its Jamaica Moves Campaign, in a bid to tackle non-communicable diseases. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

2. Gleaner ombudsman wants to hear from readers

Retired High Court judge, Justice Roy Anderson, who serves as The Gleaner‘s Ombudsman, has indicated that only a few people have so far utilised the avenue made possible for them to have a voice in keeping the publication on its toes since he assumed the role in April. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

3. Health Ministry strong on sugary drinks message

Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton is refusing to tweak the message in his ministry’s current campaign, which strongly discourages citizens from consuming excess sugar. Last week, Professor Errol Morrison, honorary president of the Diabetes Association, questioned the clarity of the message during an interview on RJR’s ‘Beyond the Headlines’.  See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

4. Second cohort of HPV vaccines being administered

The second cohort of grade seven girls is now benefiting from the Ministry of Health’s Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccination programme. The move is a proactive measure by the Government to protect girls against cervical cancer, which takes the lives of hundreds of women in the country per year and hundreds of thousands more worldwide. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

5. Chucky Brown trial continues

A high-ranking official at the Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) this morning testified that murder accused police Constable Collis ‘Chucky’ Brown admitted to him that he was a part of a ‘special’ police squad. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

6. Guns issued in breach of FLA protocol still out there

The Firearm Licensing Authority (FLA) has indicated that more than 100 guns for which licences were issued in breach of protocols remain in the hands of individuals. And Chief Executive Officer Shane Dalling said the number is going up as assessments continue. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

 

6 Things You Need To Know Today

Your news in a nutshell

  1. Commish backs Chang
  2. Ja diaspora upset about crime
  3. More Corporate Areas to be dug up
  4. More J’can women doing double mastectomy
  5. Soldier held with illegal gun
  6. 5.2 quake rocks Haiti

1. Commish backs Chang

National Security Minister Dr Horace Chang has been backed by Police Commissioner Major Antony Anderson, who, too, is adamant that change must come to the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) if the issues of crime and violence are to be brought under control. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

2. Ja diaspora upset about crime

A leading voice in the Jamaican diaspora has fired back at government Senator Kerensia Morrison, pointing out that the shipment of guns and ammunition found at the wharf in Kingston last week is not a reflection of all Jamaicans living overseas. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

3. More Corporate Area to be dug up

Motorists in the Corporate Area should expect to face more inconveniences as the National Water Commission (NWC) says that more roads are to be dug up to lay pipes in furtherance of the state company’s Non-Revenue Water Reduction (NRW) Project. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

4. More J’can women doing double mastectomy

More Jamaican women are opting to undergo a double mastectomy as a precautionary measure against breast cancer, a growing trend as a result of the ‘Angelina Jolie Effect’, one local expert has suggested. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

5. Soldier held with illegal gun

A Jamaica Defence Force soldier was arrested yesterday after he was allegedly held with an illegal firearm and several rounds of ammunition. The Jamaica Constabulary Force’s Corporate Communications Unit (CCU) has confirmed the incident, which reportedly occurred in Spanish Town, St Catherine. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

6. 5.2 quake rocks Haiti

The US Geological Survey (USGS) says a 5.2 magnitude aftershock rattled northern Haiti, a day after a 5.9 magnitude earthquake left at least 12 dead and 188 injured at the same location. The USGS says the aftershock’s epicentre was located 15.8 kilometres (9.8 miles) north-northwest of Port-de-Paix and had a depth of 10 kilometres. It struck at about 3 p.m. local time on Sunday. See full story on The Gleaner’s website

6 Things You Need To Know Today

Your news in a nutshell

  1. Pushback for PEP
  2. Wheatley assistant was NESol signing officer
  3. Bog Walk gorge closed
  4. Chucky Brown trial: Top cop to be subpoenaed
  5. New life for ‘Frog City’
  6. Big boost for Ocho Rios

1. Pushback for PEP

The decision by the education ministry to push back the Performance Task component of the Primary Exit Profile (PEP) examination until March 2019 is being praised by both parents and teachers. It was originally scheduled to be done in December. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

2. Wheatley assistant was NeSOL signing officer

Sophia Deer, an assistant to former Energy, Science and Technology Minister Andrew Wheatley, and a director on the board of National Energy Solutions Limited (NESol), was a signatory for cheques to contractors for work done on behalf of the agency. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

3. Bog Walk gorge closed

The Bog Walk Gorge in St Catherine has been closed. The Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management says it made the decision to close the gorge for public safety reasons as rainfall continues in the hilly sections of St Catherine causing water levels in the Rio Cobre to rise. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

4. Chucky Brown trial: Top cop to be subpoenaed

Justice Vivienne Harris, who is presiding at the trial for police constable Collis ‘Chucky’ Brown, today indicated she will be ordering that a subpoena is issued for the head of the Clarendon Police, Senior Superintendent Vendolyn Cameron-Powell, to appear in court. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

5. New life for ‘Frog City’

The long wait for the construction of housing units in Maxfield Park, St Andrew on lands known as ‘Frog City’ is over as Prime Minister Andrew Holness along with Member of Parliament for East Central St Andrew Dr Peter Phillips today broke ground for the initial infrastructural work to facilitate the 210 housing solutions. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

6. Big boost for Ocho Rios

After four years of operating in Jamaica, the Mexican entity Palace Resorts is to spend US$270 million to expand its footprint in the island. The hotel brand will design and construct a new property with an additional 750 rooms following the purchase of the Rooms on the Beach property in Ocho Rios, St Ann. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

 

6 Things You Need To Know Today

Your news in a nutshell

  1. PEP Performance task exam pushed back
  2. Grief too rough to bear
  3. End assault on students
  4. Spelling Bee: Taevion wins
  5. Nigeria affirms bilateral cooperation with Ja
  6. Can’t stay home and win -TT coach

1. PEP Performance Task exam pushed back

Following consultations with the Jamaica Teachers’ Association, the Ministry of Education has decided to make some adjustments to the Primary Exit Profile (PEP) examination. The Performance Task aspect of the exam, which was scheduled for December, has been pushed back to March 2019. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

2. Grief too rough to bear

Tears flowed down Candice Chambers’ cheeks yesterday and with a weak wave of the hand, she signalled to the Gleaner team to talk to her mother at their home in Oliver Gardens, May Pen, Clarendon. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

3. End assault on students

Terrified students who attend schools within the Kingston Central region can soon breathe easier, as the relevant authorities are moving quickly to protect them from robberies, as well as sexual and physical assaults on the streets. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

4. Spelling Bee: Taevion wins

Taevion on winning: “I feel very happy. I felt that I could win the competition and I did.” See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

5. Nigeria affirms bilateral cooperation with Ja

Nigerian High Commissioner to Jamaica Janet Omoleegho Olisa has called for both countries to galvanise their long-standing bilateral cooperation to increase trade between the two nations. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

6. Can’t stay home and win -TT coach

Jamaica’s female table tennis players need overseas exposure if they are to keep pace with their rivals in the region. That’s the observation of Matthew Dawson, who was national women’s team coach during the recently concluded 60th Caribbean Table Tennis Championships in Kingston. Dawson noted that players from other islands play overseas and believes Jamaica must do the same. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

 

6 Things You Need To Know Today

Your news in a nutshell

  1. Shocked into silence
  2. Alleged cop killers surrender
  3. Use tech to boost Ja’s tourism
  4. Missed death by centimetres
  5. No dengue outbreak, says health ministry
  6. Violence, robberies prompt meeting of principals

1. Shocked into silence

At just 17 years old, the world was just about to open up in all its majesty for Shawn’d Ferguson. He had big dreams of being a success but was taking his time deciding what career path to take. Then tragedy struck. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

2. Alleged cop killer surrenders

Barrington Whyte, the husband of the woman district constable who was killed in a domestic dispute on the weekend, has surrendered to the police. Top criminal defence attorney Peter Champagnie confirmed that he accompanied Whyte, 52, to the Police Commissioner’s office in St Andrew this morning. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

3. Use tech to boost Ja’s tourism

Junior Tourism Minister Bryanna Hylton wants young people to make full use of their access to technology, including smartphones and social media, as a means of boosting Jamaica’s tourism product and promoting the country to attract potential visitors. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

4. Missed death by centimetres

Two of the survivors of the vehicular crash in the vicinity of Heroes Circle, Kingston, last Friday night, which claimed the lives of two of their friends, say they too could have easily been killed if it weren’t for quick thinking. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

5. No dengue outbreak, says health ministry

With at least 192 suspected cases of dengue reported since the start of the year, principal medical officer and national epidemiologist Dr Karen Webster-Kerr at the Ministry of Health said based on most recent statistics, there is no outbreak of the disease. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

6. Violence, robberies prompt meeting of principals

A recent spate of robberies and violence against schoolchildren has prompted a meeting today of the heads of some Kingston high schools at St George’s College. The meeting will include representatives from schools in and around Central Kingston, such as Kingston College, St George’s, Clan Carty, Wolmer’s Boys and Girls. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

 

SRC Science and Technology Fairs

The Scientific Research Council (SRC) will partner with the Sustainable Youth Employment in Digital and Animation Industries (YEDAI) Project for Jamaica to execute three Science and Technology Fairs over the period, 2018 – 2020. The first National Science and Technology Fair was held this year showcasing a range of projects –  from primary school students producing cleaning products made of  local plants to high school students creating water distillers. In keeping with the aim, the fair gave various students the opportunity to identify, produce and commercialize products and services geared at improving national growth and development.

There has been much talk about the importance of entrepreneurship being introduced to students at an early age in addition to the usual academic agenda. The fair has found a unique balance between the two in allowing students to use scientific principles and processes to develop or improve products and services. However, the fair did not only offer students a chance to compete as regional ideation sessions and workshops were held previously. It helped students and teachers across the island at the primary, secondary and tertiary level identify feasible business ideas, develop working prototypes and create start-ups with an aim to address local problems.

Over thirty six projects were on display at the Spanish Court Hotel in Kingston for the event. Students from twenty schools showcased their scientific solutions in areas such as education, agriculture, food and agro-processing, energy, ICT and electronics, health & safety as well as sports / athletics. The event also featured thirty local companies and activities such as drone and solar cooking demonstrations, as well as a tech entrepreneurship session.

 

Awards were given for the best idea at the primary, secondary and tertiary level as well as the most environmentally friendly, most innovative, best commercial application and the best use of technology presented in the projects. Awards were also given for the first, second and third place schools overall. Lastly, the fair allowed students to move from a theoretical idea to making a business by selecting nine projects to receive business and technical support to effectively help them move towards commercialization.

Winners at the Primary Level
Winners at the Secondary level
Winners at the Tertiary Level

Partners and sponsors of the Fair were: YEDAI Project, Ministry of Science, Energy & Technology, Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Coldax Mart, Collins Books and More, Kingston Bookshop, Adam & Eve Day Spa, Wisynco Group Limited, Lifespan Spring Water, Radioshack Jamaica and Facey Group.

6 Things You Need To Know Today

Your news in a nutshell

  1. Schools bemoan scarcity of healthy food supplies
  2. Errol Miller death a huge loss
  3. 200 ganja farmers for CanEx Ja programme
  4. Nearly $100m in cash forfeited to State
  5. Judge rejects application to split charges
  6. Stop abusing seniors

1. Schools bemoan scarcity of healthy food supplies

Concerns are being raised in the education sector about few or no alternatives to bulla cakes and other high-sugar products following their withdrawal from public schools. Education Minister Ruel Reid, while addressing the 54th Jamaica Teachers’ Association’s Annual Conference earlier this year, had announced that several food items, including the popular bulla cakes, would be removed from local schools as part of a campaign to promote healthier eating among students. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

2. Errol Miller death a huge loss

Managing Director of Flow Jamaica Stephen Price has described the passing of Errol “EK” Miller, Executive Chairman of the Flow Foundation, as a significant loss, adding that the entire company is extremely saddened. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

3. 200 ganja farmers for CanEx Ja programme

Jamaican health and wellness distribution company, Zimmer & Co, has sponsored 200 local farmers to attend the CANEX Business Conference and Expo free of cost. The third staging of CanEx Jamaica will take place September 27-29, 2018 at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in Montego Bay, St. James. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

4. Nearly $100m in cash forfeited to State

Nearly $100 million in cash, including $68 million taken from two suspected South African ‘money mules’, was turned over to the Government’s coffers in the first five months of the current fiscal year. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

5. Judge rejects application to split charges

Justice Vivienne Harris, who is presiding over what has been dubbed the ‘police death squad trial’, has rejected an application by one of the attorneys representing police constable Collis ‘Chucky’ Brown to have the five-count indictment against him separated. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

6. Stop abusing seniors

Labour and Social Security Minister Shahine Robinson has encouraged Jamaicans to protect the elderly by reporting incidents of abuse meted out to them to the police or the National Council for Senior Citizens. See full story on The Gleaner’s website.

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