Galaxy’s Edge Store Preview: Dok-Ondar’s Den of Antiquities

first_imgShare This!We’re counting down the days until the official opening of Walt Disney World’s Galaxy’s Edge with a look at some of the sights that you’ll see in this new land. Shopping is a major part of this new land. Next up, we’re showing you some of the merchandise you can find at the Dok-Ondar’s Den of Antiquities.This store is truly the ultimate wow factor in shopping at Galaxy’s Edge. Walking in for the first time, you just look up and around and then pick your jaw up off the floor. Yes, it’s a store, and so there’s plenty of merchandise to see, but the shop itself is its own attraction. There’s so much to see in every corner of the store. From the murals when you walk in to the collection of antiquities high up on the upper level of the store, every inch of this store offers more to look at. The merchandise that really draw people’s eyes are the legacy lightsabers wielded by a variety of characters in the Star Wars universe and the collection of holocrons and kyber crystals. But the store holds a lot more, from jewelry to statues to a mishmash of items that just don’t fit anywhere else but are too cool not to sell. Prices can range from a few dollars for “wisdom stones” up to several hundred dollars for certain pieces of jewelry. (And you thought a $200 lightsaber was expensive?) It would be impossible for me to show you everything that you can find in this store, but I hope these photos give you a glimpse into what you might find. Even if you don’t plan to buy anything in Batuu, you won’t want to skip this shop.last_img read more

Bank hikes rates, calls for resolution of strike

first_img18 July 2014The monetary policy committee of the South African Reserve Bank decided on Thursday to raise its repo rate – the rate at which it lends to the country’s commercial banks – by 25 basis points, taking it to 5.75%.Speaking to reporters in Pretoria following the committee’s meeting, Reserve Bank governor Gill Marcus said the central bank’s monetary policy stance remained supportive of the domestic economy, and that any future moves would be gradual and highly data-dependent.Marcus reiterated the bank’s view that monetary policy should not be seen as the growth engine of the economy.“The sources of the below-par growth performance are largely outside the realms of monetary policy. In the short term, an improvement in the interaction and relationships between management and labour is essential to foster a climate of trust and confidence, and get South Africa back to work,” she said.Earlier on Thursday, Standard Bank said it expected the bank to hike rates by 25 basis points, especially with inflation running above the bank’s target 3% to 6% range. Consumer inflation rose to 6.6% year-on-year in May.In January, the bank hiked the repo by 50 basis points, having previously left it unchanged at 5% since July 2012.Inflation forecast raisedOn Thursday, Marcus said the bank faced an increasingly difficult dilemma of rising inflation and slowing growth. While the core mandate of the bank was price stability, it had to be mindful of the impact of its actions on economic growth.The bank has upped its inflation forecast from an expected average of 6.2% to an average 6.3% for 2014, and from 5.8% to 5.9% for 2015.“Inflation is still expected to return to within the target band during the second quarter of 2015, provided that there are no further shocks to the system.”Marcus said the rand continued to pose an upside risk to the inflation outlook, with the currency having depreciated by 2.6% on a trade-weighted basis since May. The current trend in wage settlements posed a further upside risk, she said, adding: “These pressures are likely to intensify in the current difficult labour relations environment.”Growth outlook deterioratesAt the same time, South Africa’s growth outlook has deteriorated, compounded by continued labour disruptions.“Following a contraction of 0.6% in the first quarter, the outlook for the second quarter is expected to be positive but subdued, particularly in light of weak mining and manufacturing data in May,” Marcus said.The bank’s latest forecast – which assumes a speedy resolution of the metalworkers’ strike – sees growth coming at 1.7% for 2014, compared to 2.1% previously. The growth forecasts for 2015 and 2016 have been reduced from 3.1% to 2.9% and from 3.4% to 3.2% respectively.Source: read more

Cloud Computing: Working Through the Details

first_imgMany early adopters of cloud computing are enjoying the benefits, but the journey isn’t necessarily without bumps.  Consider the case of Eli Lilly.  Lilly enjoys all that benefits that utility-like on-demand computing can provide.At Eli Lilly, hundreds of scientists have been using Amazon AWS computing power to perform high-performance research.   Storage and processing power can be adjusted up or down based on the current activities in the business.  An Amazon virtual server can be deployed in three minutes compared to the previous seven and a half weeks that had been needed to bring a new machine on line.  Dave Powers of Eli Lilly said that  “the deployment time is really what impressed us. It’s just shy of instantaneous.”  Powers also sees the cloud as a focal point where internal researchers could share and collaborate with researchers from outside their company.That Amazon-Lilly relationship was reported to have hit a snag this summer though.  In late July an article in Search Cloud Computing reported that Eli Lilly was planning to drop the use of Amazon services or at least to not to move forward with expanded use of the service because of a conflict over terms in the licensing, particularly in the area of legal indemnification.  The report said that Eli Lilly wanted Amazon to accept more accountability for potential problems that might occur, like security breaches and network outages.  But Amazon was said to have pushed back.  Eli Lilly was said to have been frustrated that Amazon was unwilling to negotiate anything different than what was part of their standard contract.  The story was later disputed by Amazon’ CTO Werner Vogels.While the story wasn’t true, it does highlight the anxiety that many customers are feeling about cloud computing.  Customers need to be able to come to terms with their cloud vendors on important contract points, especially in the area of how potential risks are to be shared by the two parties.  It also highlights the need for vendors to be totally transparent in their licensing terms to win over customers who are hesitant to jump over to the cloud.last_img read more

U.N. Takes Stand Against Freedom of Speech, Religion: This Week in Online Tyranny

first_imgWhy Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market curt hopkins Related Posts Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hostingcenter_img Tags:#Government#international#NYT#web In a move that will give states and other parties who are offended by free speech precedent to further restrict it, the United Nations has again passed the resolution forbidding “defamation of religion.”This is its third time through the Byzantine U.N. voting process. Allegedly put forward to protect religion from, well, people saying mean things, the resolution was tellingly put forward by Pakistan on behalf of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, not a group renowned for its defense of minority religious practice. Although this year’s resolution replaced “defamation’ with “vilification” and installed a few other cosmetic changes, it was the same bill. And although it passed by a smaller margin, it passed nonetheless, so the news that the move’s support is eroding is a bit rosy. The continued implications of this move are the same as last time. Among the most important is the fact that tyrannous states already use religious rationale to justify imprisonment and torture – such as that of Kareem Amer of Egypt and Walid Husayin of Palestine – and will use it more; those who don’t use it as much, will. The text of this year’s resolution threw alleged concern for “Judeophobia and Christianophobia” into the text, but neglects to speak of these two groups anywhere else. This resolution is certain to give moral and political juice to anyone in a non-Islamic country, such as those in Europe, who seek to criminalize criticism of Islam. Countries with a fully-functioning mechanism of tyranny will not suddenly open up to religious freedom. You won’t see a church in Riyadh or a falun gong meeting house in Shanghai. You might see a critic of Islam in Hamburg locked up, however, or a Copt in Egypt jailed for protesting that Christ is the light and the way. So much for freedom, of religion or speech. Indian arrested for email joke. A government employee from Kerala state named Moithu was “summoned to the Cyber Police Station there and arrested on Nov. 11 for forwarding an email joke about the election debacle of the ruling CPM (Communist Party-Marxist) party to a few friends.”U.S. District Court denies warrantless GPS tracking. “A divided federal appeals court in Washington this afternoon rejected the U.S. Justice Department’s request that the full court overturn a ruling that requires law enforcement officials to get a warrant before using a GPS device to track a suspect.” This is a bit of push-back to the post-9/11 tendency in the U.S. to relax civil rights protections in law for the supposed sake of security and is a welcome thing. “UltraSurf” added to arsenal of circumvention tools. A computer security specialist once told me, “Any group, with enough time and enough money, can find out who you are.” This is too often forgotten in a dreamy belief in tools that too many imagine to be fool-proof anti-tyranny devices. Although UltraSurf, created by American falun gong practitioners, gets good reviews, and although most people who are arrested for online activities have done their work in full view, with real names and no protection, nothing is fool-proof. Anyone who wants to use a tool like this should be aware of that. Kuwaiti blogger and journalist arrested, again. Mohamed Abdel Qader Al-Jassem was originally sentenced to six months for slander in April for his writings on the government and ruling family, particularly on the prime minister. The sentence was suspended and he was released on bail pending an appeal. He is a journalist both online and on TV, an observer for human rights groups and a blogger. Several days ago he was re-sentenced for the same alleged crime, this time for one year. Egypt tries Facebook user in military court. Accused of disclosing military secrets on his Facebook group, Ahmad Hassan Bassiouny has been hauled before a secret military court. The Facebook page gave information on compulsory military service and was named after the ministry that oversees that service, the Administration of Military Recruitment and Mobilization. The sole goal of the group seems to be to provide information to fellow recruits on the process. It’s bad enough to bang people up because they say you suck, it’s cosmically retarded to do so when their actions are “patriotic.” But those who will do one, will clearly do the other. Tyranny is a disease that doesn’t distinguish between a “guilty” vector and an innocent one. Photo of religion stencil by Tom Rolfe A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…last_img read more

How to solve the mystery of what your customers really want

first_imgFrom our sponsors: How to solve the mystery of what your customers really want How to solve the mystery of what your customers really wantYou are here: How well do you really know your customers? If your company is like most brands, you already realize that you don’t really know them at all. In fact, a 2015 study from Aberdeen Group found that just 4 percent of organizations are fully satisfied with their ability to ensure data-driven conversations with their customers.That’s a shockingly small number. And it’s also a huge problem, especially in today’s customer-first culture. Data-driven insights are the key to increasing customer satisfaction. If you don’t know your buyers, how can you really help them? That disconnect can very quickly translate into reduced ROI and decreased revenue for your business. That’s why it’s so important to incorporate data and analytics into every activity designed to support the customer experience. It’s simple math: better customer interactions equal superior business results.So, if it’s so simple, why aren’t more companies doing it? What does it take to use analytics effectively, and how can you turn data into the kinds of insights you can use to meet the rapidly changing needs of your customers? Let’s look at three key strategies for success.Start with a unified view of the customer journeyEvery customer travels on a unique path to reach your organization. By understanding the different channels they use, the changing needs they have during various stages of their life cycles and what their behaviors are telling you over time, you can gain a clear view of who they really are — and what they want. Business intelligence and customer journey mapping tools can help you fill in the gaps in the customer picture. But of course, that information is just the beginning.Turn data into insights you can actually useKnowing your customers is only valuable if you actually put that information to work for you. That’s why it’s critical to take the huge volume of data you gather (and it will be huge) and make sure it’s integrated into everything you do around the customer — and across every team that’s involved in shaping your customers’ experience with you. It’s also important to keep that insight current. Buyer needs change quickly, and it takes a steady, ongoing assessment of the data to keep up with them.Make sure the data is really working for youCreating happy customers is only the beginning. It’s also important to make sure those customers are doing what you want them to do and converting in ways that matter to your business. So in addition to using analytics to personalize and customize their interactions, you need to continually track how your customer experiences are performing — and how they’re impacting your key indicators.Putting it all togetherHere’s an example. Let’s say you’ve just released version 2.0 of an exciting new smart watch. The company has set and is pursuing an aggressive target of increasing revenues by 10 percent in a very competitive market. They plan to achieve this business goal by developing and launching a multichannel campaign that targets customers based on preferences. A few days after launch, the marketing team logs into IBM Customer Experience Analytics to check the results. Traffic is up and customers are adding the smart watch to their shopping cart, but conversions are down.Using the same solution and interface, the marketing team quickly identifies which customer segments are not converting. They drill directly into sessions and discover that a promo code entered by customers is not being accepted by the system.The team wants to know where this bad code came from. They examine the entire customer journey and discover a typo in the promo code distributed on Facebook.The team quickly takes action to fix the issue by issuing a correction. They identify the segment of customers who experienced the code denial and follow up with a personalized message apologizing for the error and providing the correct code. Once the code is fixed and the follow-up messages sent out, the team sees their conversion rate return to normal, positioning them to meet the desired 10 percent increase in revenues.Only by using in-depth customer analytics, with a comprehensive view across channels, at a macro and micro level, and over time, can you really get to this degree of insight. Posted on 13th June 2017Digital Marketing FacebookshareTwittertweetGoogle+sharecenter_img HomeDigital MarketingHow to solve the mystery of what your customers really want Related postsLytics now integrates with Google Marketing Platform to enable customer data-informed campaigns14th December 2019The California Consumer Privacy Act goes live in a few short weeks — Are you ready?14th December 2019ML 2019121313th December 2019Global email benchmark report finds email isn’t dead – it’s essential13th December 20192019 benchmark report: brand vs. non-brand traffic in Google Shopping12th December 2019Keep your LinkedIn advertising strategy focused in 202012th December 2019last_img read more