Journal of Medicine and Philosophy (United Kingdom) | Year: 2012
Patient support tools have drawn on a variety of disciplines, including psychotherapy, social psychology, and social care. One discipline that has not so far been used to support patients is philosophy. This paper proposes that a particular philosophical approach, phenomenology, could prove useful for patients, giving them tools to reflect on and expand their understanding of their illness. I present a framework for a resource that could help patients to philosophically examine their illness, its impact on their life, and its meaning. I explain the need for such a resource, provide philosophical grounding for it, and outline the epistemic and existential gains philosophy offers. Illness often begins as an intrusion on one's life but with time becomes a way of being. I argue that this transition impacts on core human features such as the experience of space and time, human abilities, and adaptability. It therefore requires philosophical analysis and response. The paper uses ideas from Husserl and Merleau-Ponty to present such a response in the form of a phenomenological toolkit for patients. The toolkit includes viewing illness as a form of phenomenological reduction, thematizing illness, and examining illness as altering the ill person's being in the world. I suggest that this toolkit could be offered to patients as a workshop, using phenomenological concepts, texts, and film clips to reflect on illness. I conclude by arguing that examining illness as a limit case of embodied existence deepens our understanding of phenomenology.© The Author 2012. Published by Oxford University Press, on behalf of the Journal of Medicine and Philosophy Inc. All rights reserved.
Abdellah S.,University of Science and Technology Houari Boumediene |
Mokhtar N.,UWE |
Amina S.,University of Science and Technology Houari Boumediene
Journal of Electronic Imaging | Year: 2015
The H.264/AVC video coding standard is used in a wide range of applications from video conferencing to high-definition television according to its high compression efficiency. This efficiency is mainly acquired from the newly allowed prediction schemes including variable block modes. However, these schemes require a high complexity to select the optimal mode. Consequently, complexity reduction in the H.264/AVC encoder has recently become a very challenging task in the video compression domain, especially when implementing the encoder in real-time applications. Fast mode decision algorithms play an important role in reducing the overall complexity of the encoder. In this paper, we propose an adaptive fast intermode algorithm based on motion activity, temporal stationarity, and spatial homogeneity. This algorithm predicts the motion activity of the current macroblock from its neighboring blocks and identifies temporal stationary regions and spatially homogeneous regions using adaptive threshold values based on content video features. Extensive experimental work has been done in high profile, and results show that the proposed source-coding algorithm effectively reduces the computational complexity by 53.18% on average compared with the reference software encoder, while maintaining the high-coding efficiency of H.264/AVC by incurring only 0.097 dB in total peak signal-to-noise ratio and 0.228% increment on the total bit rate. © 2015 SPIE and IS and T.
Journal of International Commercial Law and Technology | Year: 2012
The question of whether you can ever regulate the virtual world against economic crime is one which cannot be answered easily in practice or in theory. This paper examines this question as part of a much larger study into virtual economic crime. Economic crime and money laundering are occurring in many virtual worlds and to prevent them would have a positive impact on the negation of terrorist financing. However in order to prevent economic crime, the legal jurisdiction of virtual worlds must first be established. The paper examines the academic debate thriving between Internet separatist and inclusionist, outlining the philosophical approach of the paper in turn in order to discuss whether you can ever regulate against economic crime in virtual worlds. © 2012 Clare Chambers Published by JICLT. All rights reserved.
Eiben A.E.,University of Amsterdam |
Studies in Computational Intelligence | Year: 2012
Developing automated problem solvers (that is, algorithms) is one of the central themes of mathematics and computer science. Similarly to engineering,where looking at Nature's solutions has always been a source of inspiration, copying 'natural problem solvers' is a stream within these disciplines. When looking for the most powerful problem solver of the universe, two candidates are rather straightforward: the human brain, and the evolutionary process that created the human brain. © 2012 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.
The unique hand-held instrument can measure precisely how much dirt has accumulated on an aeroplane's surface and determine whether the build-up increases drag. Plane operators can use data collected by the scanner to optimise aircraft cleaning routines and ensure their fleet is as aerodynamic as possible. It is estimated airlines using the ECOTEC system – developed by academics from UWE Bristol in association with concept designer Intercede Ventures Limited – could cut their fuel bills by as much as one per cent. One of the world's largest charter airlines is trialling the patented system in six of its aircraft ahead of the product being launched into the market this year. Intercede worked with researchers from UWE's Institute of Bio-Sensing Technology to develop the system, using the UWE team's considerable expertise in sensor system design, fabrication and evaluation, together with the university's wind tunnels for early testing and calculations. The company's managing director Graham Mimms said the technology – which uses lasers, light beams and mirrors – also had applications in the automotive, marine, rail and wind turbine industries because all use aero-dynamic surfaces. Graham said: "A clean aircraft is a more efficient aircraft but that's not always been too easy to prove. We thought 'If we can prove it, airlines would keep them clean and efficient' and as a result more environmentally friendly. "Engineers will soon be able to walk around the aircraft with our patented and industry approved instrument to analyse which surface sections need cleaning to keep it in its most efficient state. If you clean it by applying an industry approved cleaning compound you will have an aircraft aerodynamically more efficient. "We detect when it becomes beneficial to re-clean specific areas of the aircraft as degradation (increased drag) is not even across the aircraft surface. By doing this, we can keep the aircraft within an efficiency envelope. By following our protocols, airlines will be able to maintain the surfaces in a more efficient state. An aircraft can look clean to the eye but not be aero-dynamically at its best – our instrument can detect this." Graham said airlines' approach to cleaning their planes varied, hampered by the high water usage (sometimes more than 20,000 litres per wet wash) which is not eco-friendly. But he said the ECOTEC system would generally recommend the dry washing of aircraft with environmentally-friendly cleaning products supplied by project collaborative partner Chemetall, a global supplier of aircraft-approved cleaning and maintenance compounds and products. He said: "What we are recommending is more labour intensive (dry washing) but the resulting efficiency can be greater. If carbon emissions can be reduced by reduced drag efficiencies, airlines may also be able to benefit from reduced taxes." Graham, who along with his two fellow founding directors have more than 100 years of experience in the airline industry at senior managerial and director level, said his company decided to work with UWE because of its facilities, expertise and close ties with the aviation industry. He said: "A big deciding factor was the fact UWE has considerable expertise in sensor technology development coupled with appropriate facilities, for example three wind tunnels. There is duel speed sub-sonic one and an ultra-sonic one. Using these was the basis of the initial research to prove that drag can be measured and could be related to the efficiency of the aeroplane. "We also looked at the history of the university and the way it is supported by the big names in the aviation industry including aircraft manufacturers and aero engine suppliers. For us it had the right credentials for the technological aspects of what we are doing." The development of the surface analyser has been supported with £100,000 in grants from UWE's Business Technology Centre, iNets South West and Innovation 4 Growth. Investment firm Angels4Angels has also recently backed the venture with a six-figure sum. Graham said: "We are delighted to welcome the support and financial expertise that Angels4Angels brings to our project, enabling us to focus our efforts on further product development and marketing our carbon footprint reduction systems to international aviation and other markets. "Through our collaborative working relationship with the international aircraft cleaning manufacturer Chemetall – Intercede Ventures will commence marketing its airline carbon footprint reduction aircraft surface management service in 2016 through Chemetall's global aviation distribution network alongside its own marketing activities."