December 21

Folkmoot’s Coming!

first_imgThe 2019 Folkmoot International Festival is an eleven-day event, July 18 – 28, based in Haywood County and held in mountain towns throughout Western North Carolina. The festival features folk dance troupes with live music from the Bahamas, China, Colombia, Egypt, Hungary, Nepal, Romania, and local Appalachian and Cherokee dancers and musicians. Known as North Carolina’s International Folk Festival for almost 40 years, Folkmoot has evolved into a year-round cultural organization with an annual summer festival that celebrates world culture through international folk dance performances, live music, parades, craft beer, food trucks and artisan vendors. In 2019, Folkmoot expanded its festival programming with several new events, including an Appalachian folkways gathering and community picnic, an international beer and food truck fair, a cultural sports event, a lantern parade and a late night variety show. The 2019 Festival includes activities and performances in the towns of Waynesville, Clyde, Lake Junaluska, Canton, Cherokee, Hickory, Asheville, and Hendersonville.last_img read more

December 18

South Africans urged to be fuel-efficient

first_img3 April 2012With hefty fuel price hikes set to kick in on Wednesday, Energy Minister Dipuo Peters has urged South Africans to be economical in their fuel use – and creative in finding ways to ease the impact of the increases.From midnight on Tuesday, the retail price of 95-octane petrol will increase by 71 cents in Gauteng province and 66 cents at the coast, while the retail price of diesel (0.05 percent sulphur) will rise by 51.9 cents in Gauteng at 47.6 cents at the coast.The wholesale price of illuminating paraffin will increase by 20.6 cents at the coast, and by 26.6 cents in Gauteng.Public transport, lift clubsPeters encouraged South Africans to be economical in their fuel use, while taking steps to ease the impact of the fuel prices increases.“You are encouraged to prioritise fuel efficiency in all your daily activities with the aim of reducing fuel consumption. Avoid speeding, and use public transport whenever it is practically possible to do so.”Peters said the use of lift clubs could go a long way in reducing people’s transport costs.‘Not within our power to prevent’“These increases are not within the government’s powers to prevent,” Peters said, noting that, as a non-oil producing country, South Africa was a price taker and depended on imports.“Fuel prices are dictated by issues such as global political developments among oil producing countries and the big economies of the world.“While global developments and activity are more promising than a year ago, other issues such as the tensions between the United States of America and some of the oil producing countries have contributed to higher crude prices.”Local factors affecting fuel prices include the annual 20 cents and 8 cents per litre increase in the Fuel Levy and Road Accident Fund respectively, announced by Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan in his Budget speech in February, as well as the Transnet pipeline tariff increase.Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

December 9

Experts Weigh in on 2014 IT Trends

first_imgManaging the Changing IT Landscape: Future of IT                             2013 was another transformational year for IT. As I look back at IDC’s 2013 predictions for Competing on the Third Platform and Gartner’s Top 10 2013 Strategic Technology Trends, it’s interesting to compare the predictions to reality.  Rapidly expanding cloud technologies, ever-present social connectivity, data analytics opportunities, and a range of cool new business devices have changed the IT solution landscape. It’s changed how we work and interact with customers, and in turn, it has transformed our potential for business productivity.A few months ago I wrote a blog on the future of IT, and specifically, the role of cloud. Now that 2014 is officially here, I wanted to take a closer look at what’s coming with a new batch of insights from the experts. Not surprisingly, the common thread is simply more change. So let’s look forward. Gartner: Organizations must manage mobile, Internet of EverythingForbes also published Gartner’s Top Strategic Technology Trends for 2014. After exploring the 2013 predictions from the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo 2013, I notice a lot of similarities: Forrester: Digital key to business successForbes recently featured the 2014-2016 technology predictions from Forrester, which are largely rooted in today’s landscape of continuous connectivity and endless apps. According to Forrester Analyst Brian Hopkins, the CIO must drive the nimbleness that will be demanded by employees and customers yet find a way to do so securely. Here’s a quick look at my favorite Forrester’s predictions: Physical and digital worlds will converge and consumers will expect uniform service across each.Embracing digital technology will become the make-or-break point for business success. APIs will be the “digital glue” for services to become accessible from a range of environments. Mobility, devices and applications dominate. Companies must get a handle on mobile device management and “better define expectations for employee-owned hardware” as BYOD becomes more popular and more complex.Cloud becomes embedded as the preferred IT service model with a range of expanding options. Even more devices become connected and embedded, giving rise to extreme mobility and an explosion of data across the “Internet of Everything,” which builds off of the Internet of Things  Here’s a quick side-by-side recap comparing Gartner’s Top Ten Strategic Technology Trend predictions for both 2013 and 2014:Implications for IT: Simplify and standardizeLike the last 2-3 years, this rapid rate of change will continue into the future driven by technology advancements in support of business innovation and competitive markets. A recent survey on CIO.com revealed that CIOs believe these forces will transform their roles by 2020. Some quick insights:  85% will cast a wider net to enable multiple channels across the business; 80% will standardize software and simplified IT architectures to meet growing tech requirements, faster.  Simplification and standardization does not mean contraction or doing less. On the contrary, IDC predicts spending will rise in 2014 by an estimated 5%. This is important in my opinion because one of the most critical focus areas above isn’t directly called out: Security. As IT re-architects for scale, growth, and flexibility, the key to success lies in managing these new devices and managing the integration of existing and new cloud solutions. The catch is that all this must be done while securing sensitive corporate data that is critical to gaining insights that propel the organization forward. Mobile productivity is the starting pointThe benefits of mobility remain largely untapped for many enterprises. Embracing enterprise mobility and addressing the forces of consumerization are complex and potentially costly business initiatives. By taking advantage of industry best practices, key lessons and insights from Intel IT, and new technologies like HTML5, organizations can reduce risk and speed the implementation process.The Intel Strategy Series on IT consumerization provides two paths to help you build your plan at your own pace.  What strategic topics will your IT organization be addressing in 2014?Chris @chris_p_intel#ITCenter #FutureofITlast_img read more