the Creole cultural identity became a means of distinguishing who was truly native to Louisiana from those that were Anglo. Creole has to come mean the language and folk culture which native to the southern part of Louisiana where African

the Creole cultural identity became a means of distinguishing who was truly native to Louisiana from those that were Anglo. Creole has to come mean the language and folk culture which native to the southern part of Louisiana where African

French

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Dealing with disengaged employees

Dealing with disengaged employees

Dealing with disengaged employees

The major lessons to be learnt from this case

There are various lessons to be learnt in this case. To start with, disengaged workers are usually unproductive and often lead to loss of customer loyalty. On the other hand, engaged employees are usually highly productive and provide good services to customers. The causes of disengagement can either be behavioural or economical. Disengaged workers are costly to an organization in numerous ways. Thus, it is essential to try available ways to deal with disengaged employees but sometimes, the best choice if to fire the worker. Further, poor management practices are a major cause of workers disengagement. Also, disengaged managers have an adverse impact to the performance of workers. It is thus important for managers to establish good relationship with all workers and establish ways to respond to individual performances. More importantly, organizations should focus on preventing employee disengagement through establishing ways to discover ‘mental absence’ in workers and try to fix the problem before disengagement takes place.

How training and re-training can be used to better engage the retail employees when;

(a) They are new

Training and retraining can be used to better engage new retail employees through effective on-boarding process. This is a process in which new employees learn the culture of an organization (Macey et al, 2011, p. 1). From the first contact that an organization has with new employees, the retail organization can imbue the employees with values and goals of the organization. As Macey et al, (2011, p. 1) noted, this can be done through formal training of the employees, focusing on organizational values as well as the skills required to do the work. This process can be reinforced through offering the new employees with informal opportunities for interaction and through continuous retraining. This will enhance better perception of the new employees towards the organization, increase their focus on organizational goals and hence, increase their engagement (Macey et al, 2011, p. 1).

(b) After they have been with a retailer for a while

Training which is meant to engage employees who have stayed in the retailer for a while needs to focus on building effective communication among the employees and between employees and management, enhance trust with the management and cultivate the employees to think systematically (Champion, 2008, p. 13). For an effective training process, the management should first consider surveying the employees in order to understand the specific skills that each will need to learn. This will help to match the match the training with the preferences and requirements of each employee. It is essential to make the training sessions enjoyable through building interactivity into the training programs. More importantly, the employees need to be allowed to express themselves as unique individuals during training (Macey et al, 2011, p. 1). The training process should be made continuous. Generally, this will help to foster sense of belonging and creates meaningful opportunities to contribute, to learn and to grow for the workers and thus, increase their engagement.

Supervision style that is most likely going to motivate retail employees

The most suitable supervision style that would motivate the retail employees is the democratic style. In this style, the management includes employees in the process of decision-making and problem solving, though it retains the ultimate say in the final resolution (Pinnow, 2011, p. 51). This style increases employees’ engagement and participation, hence increasing job satisfaction, morale, efficiency and productivity. Thus, the democratic style is likely to be the most effective in motivating the retail workers.

Impact of reducing labour costs at a percentage of sales from 10% to 8 percent

It is not good for the retailer to reduce labour costs by cutting down sales commission from 10 percent to 8 percent. As Thomason et al (2001, p. 189) explains, compensation motivates employees to work hard and to strive for higher levels of productivity. As such, reduction in compensation will create mistrust of the organization among workers, decrease their morale, increase turnover rate and subsequently, reduce overall organizational productivity. Therefore, it is not advisable for the retailer to reduce labour costs by cutting down workers’ commission.

Suggestions for improving labour productivity in retailing

The productivity of the retail business can be improved in various ways. First, it can be enhanced through improved ways of worker’s motivation while focusing on gaining their engagement and loyalty United Nations, (2006, p. 126). Secondly, the retailing productivity can be improved through training of staff to improve their knowledge and skills as well as through adapting improved recruitment and selection process. Thirdly, it can be enhanced through investment in advanced equipments and technology. The fourth option is to create a system that will respond to employees’ issues effectively. This will help to reduce frustrations, increase job satisfaction, increase workers’ efficiency and increase overall productivity (United Nations, 2006, p. 126). Finally, the retail’s productivity can be enhanced by fostering open communication within the organization which will allow workers to make suggestions for updating office policies and streamlining procedures.

The pros and cons of cross-training a disengaged employee

There are several merits of cross-training a disengaged employee. To start with, training makes a disengaged worker experience change in routine hence reducing boredom (Sunley, et al, 2011, p. 145). Secondly, it provides a chance for a disengaged employee to raise issues affecting him or her and to make suggestions for improvement. According to (Sunley, et al, 2011, p. 145), training makes the disengaged workers to feel valued since the employer is using time and resources. The cross-training process can help to identify candidates for higher level jobs. Generally, a well designed training for disengaged employee help to increase job satisfaction, reduce employee turnover rate, increase customer loyalty and organizational productivity (Sunley, et al, 2011, p. 145).

As well, there are various demerits associated with training of a disengaged employee. First, it is costly to an organization to implement an effective cross-training program (Sunley, et al, 2011, p. 145). Secondly, there is usually less productivity during the course of training. Further, if poorly implemented, the cross-training program can have several adverse impacts on the disengaged worker. According to Sunley, et al (2011, p. 145), it can kill employee’s morale especially if they feel that he or she is likely to lose job. It can also lead to resentments if the worker feels that the training is likely to increase his or her responsibilities, but for the same pay. If poorly implemented, training can cause the disengaged worker to lose sight of key responsibilities, leading to confusion. Generally, if poorly managed, cross-training can result in less productivity, customer dissatisfaction and even possibility of costly mistakes (Sunley, et al, 2011, p. 145).

The labour related functions could be outsourced by an auto dealer

There are various labour related tasks such as handling of dealership website leads, third leads generated by advertising on TV, radio, direct mail, incoming sales calls, inbound calls, and database mining of past sales and service customers among others (Sundararajan, et al 2011, p. 18). The reasons for outsourcing include cost saving, achieving better control of the outsourced functions, need to focus on core competencies, avoiding distractions and push by company politics. An auto dealer may outsource any or all of the aforementioned functions depending on the skills and abilities of the staff.

References

Champion, M. R. & Capella University, (2008), Creating engagement: The use of

Expectancy Theory in corporate customer service teams, ProQuest, MI

Macey, W. H., Schneider, B., Barbera, K. M. & Young, S. A., (2011), Employee

Engagement: Tools for Analysis, Practice, and Competitive Advantage, John Wiley & Sons, London

Pinnow, D. F., (2011), Leadership – What Really Matters: A Handbook on Systemic

Leadership, Springer, Heidelberg

Sunley, P., Martin, R. & Nativel, C., (2011), Putting Workfare in Place: Local Labour

Markets and the New Deal, John Wiley & Sons, London

Thomason, T., Schmidle, T. P. & Burton, J. F., (2001), Workers’ compensation: benefits,costs, and safety under alternative insurance arrangements, W.E. Upjohn Institute, London

United Nations, (2006), Economic survey of Latin America and the Caribbean, United

Nations Publications, Geneva

Sundararajan, A., Wiegmann, J. & Tao, Z., (2011), Decision Making for Outsourcing and

Privatization of Vehicle and Equipment Fleet Maintenance, Transportation Research Board, Washington

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Data Mining in Marketing

Data Mining in Marketing

Data Mining in Marketing

Name

Institution

Data mining in marketing

Marketing refers to a science and an art of investigating, developing and delivering significant value in goods and services to meet the needs of the target market at the benefits of a particular company or business (Burns, 2009). In marketing a company identifies the unfulfilled desires and needs of the consumers. It creates solutions and quantifies the dimension of the target market and business profit potentials.

This paper will be looking at ways which “Shoprite Stores” will use in implementing a data mining project. The first will be to look at the customers demographic. This will help them understand what kind of customers they have.

Shoprite Stores has looked at the target market. In this situation, the customer is the main focus of the business or company when developing their strategies and activities, compared to the product of the company. The company’s model shifts in marketing needs in that the company builds a commitment to quality of goods and service and to critically listen to the needs of the customers to determine the market requirements and how the business can solve these needs effectively and efficiently (Burns, 2009).

Customer frequency usage is also an important factor that Shoprite Stores need to consider while implement a data mining project. This will give a hint on how long particular goods or service are sort after by clients. As a result, it will be easy to decide what stock or to purchase (Burns, 2009).

After all these are done, a business must be able to evaluate and measure the success of the marketing strategy they are using. Shoprite Stores should emphasize on developing strategies that are customer centred, and which will allow them evaluate the marketing strategy.

References

Burns, N. (2009). Understanding marketing research: Introduction to data mining, 2nd edn. Philadelphia: W.B. Saunders Company

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David Maldonado in his article, Hispanic Christianity within Mainline Traditions

David Maldonado in his article, Hispanic Christianity within Mainline Traditions

David Maldonado in his article, Hispanic Christianity within Mainline Traditions, highlights the seismic shift of Hispanic Americans from Catholicism to Protestantism in America. In the last 15 years, about one million Latinos have left the Roman Catholic and joined other Evangelical Protestant churches. The author tries to explain the reasons behind the major religious migration by comparing Catholicism, conservative and mainline Protestantism. Socioeconomic factors greatly influence the shift since human beings seek material and spiritual compensation from the church; thus, they shift to a low-tension community that will meet their needs accordingly and flexibly.

The author gives two possible causes for the shift. Firstly, Catholic churches are unresponsive in that they fail to meet the needs and expectations of the followers particularly the poor. Conversely, the sectarian groups fill in the vacuum by providing enthusiastic, community fellowship, culturally accessible and sensitive leadership to the worshipers. Secondly, the sectarian groups offer the platform for the Americanization of the Latinos who seek to be part of the mainstream society and break from their archaic traditions. However, the author considers the second explanation more credible than the first because Latino Protestants have decent jobs and lifestyles. Transfer of loyalties to Protestant religious groups has been an essential tool for Westernization and modernization, and the Latinos utilize it for assimilation and accommodation into the mainstream society, in America.

The possible discussion questions derived from this article could be as follows. Why are people drifting from Catholicism and joining Protestant groups? What are the social factors that influence this religious phenomenon? What will be the future of Catholic Latino churches in America in the next 10 years?

The article is quite convincing and detailed because it attempts to unravel the reasons behind the massive movement of Latinos from Catholicism to Protestantism. The empirical approach that the author uses to answer tentatively some of the questions related to the Hispanic shift is satisfactory. From a personal opinion, I would concur with the thoughts of the author because Protestant churches are more flexible in interacting and communicating with the followers than Catholics. Therefore, they attract Christians because they meet their spiritual and material needs, which is what a majority seeks by attending church.

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Day Work of a Civil Engineer

Day Work of a Civil Engineer

Table of Contents

TOC o “1-3” h z u HYPERLINK l “_Toc404594845” My Career of Choice PAGEREF _Toc404594845 h 1

HYPERLINK l “_Toc404594846” Day Work of a Civil Engineer PAGEREF _Toc404594846 h 1

HYPERLINK l “_Toc404594847” What interests me in the Career PAGEREF _Toc404594847 h 3

HYPERLINK l “_Toc404594848” What motivates me PAGEREF _Toc404594848 h 3

HYPERLINK l “_Toc404594849” Synopsis of the Career PAGEREF _Toc404594849 h 3

HYPERLINK l “_Toc404594850” Skills Needed PAGEREF _Toc404594850 h 3

HYPERLINK l “_Toc404594851” Job Outlook PAGEREF _Toc404594851 h 3

HYPERLINK l “_Toc404594852” References PAGEREF _Toc404594852 h 4

My Career of ChoiceCivil engineering is an expert building teach that arrangements with the outline, development, and upkeep of the physical and characteristically assembled environment, including works like streets, scaffolds, channels, dams, and structures. Civil engineering is the second-most seasoned designing teach after military designing, and it is characterized to recognize non-military building from military designing.

Day Work of a Civil Engineer

8:00 AM- I arrive at the office, greet my co-workers, and find out what the current talk of the town is. This is vital, as it may influence my anticipating future occupations. I have to realize what kind of arranging is generally done, what tasks are right now in advancement, and what general conclusion of past work is. This can provide for me direction later on. Amid this time I likewise arrange out my day, which includes checking on errands and seeing when I am obliged to be on location, which is not to a great degree successive.

9:00 AM- I start chip away at drafting a huge task to be finished later in the not so distant future. I got a call from a foreman asking for I review some electrical work that had been carried out, so I calendar that for later in the day. When I finish my arranged advancement on the drafting, I invest eventually perusing and reacting to messages that I had at one time disregarded.

10:00 AM- I go out to investigate the beforehand specified electrical work. This includes verifying that everything meets our construction standard necessities, and proposing potential changes to the current outline. As construction regulations are continually being overhauled, calls like this are among the most well-known I get, and I manage them on an about consistent schedule.

11:00 AM- I make it again to the workplace, where I have my first arrangement of the day. I meet with some nearby authorities who have proposed another park and recreational region. We examine the related expenses and issues of building the recreation center, which incorporate purchasing area, reviewing, guaranteeing any dangers are uprooted, organizing pipes and electrical lines to be run, and discovering cash for supplies and structures. With this done, we leave to review the potential site, where we do some simple arranging.

1:00 PM- I consume a late lunch with a percentage of alternate specialists in the city. We discuss new items that have gone ahead the market that can possibly spare us time and cash on future undertakings, and resolve to review some of these items in the promising new weeks. All new materials and techniques need to be examined before we favor it for open works ventures.

2:00 PM- I return to the workplace, and make an unfinished copy of the recreation center that we discussed. I investigate a few development alternatives, including a community focus, ball and tennis courts, and a baseball field for the nearby little association groups. I make a few distinctive arrangements of alternatives, and email them to the authorities I met with prior. I then get an email to audit CAD documents of an arranged subdivision.

3:30 PM- After assessing the CAD documents of the arranged subdivision, I take a look at the dirt and reviewing report and note that there may be waste issues with the property. We examine conceivable solutions for this issue, and the expenses connected with each. I retreat to the workplace.

4:00 PM- I invest eventually meeting up a few understudies who are interning at the workplace. I approach them about their exploration for the day, and address any inquiries and concerns they may have. A large portion of them are school understudies from the neighborhood college, and a significant number of them have yearnings of working in this office when they graduate, so it is paramount they comprehend the ins and outs.

What interests me in the CareerThe nature of the work done and the salary scale is what interests me in this career.

What motivates me

What motivates me to the profession is the ideal salary that the engineers’ get and the changes they make in real like such as designing bridges and building that would be used by people in the future.

Synopsis of the Career

Civil engineers need a bachelor’s degree, either in Civil engineering or structural designing engineering. They ordinarily require a graduate degree and licensure for advancement to senior positions. In spite of the fact that licensure necessities differ inside the U.S., structural designers should generally be authorized in the areas where they give benefits openly. Civil engineers for the most part work inside in business locales. On the other hand, numerous invest time outside at development destinations so they can screen operations or take care of issues on location. Most work full time. The average yearly wage for Civil engineers was $79,340 in May 2013 (Flood & Kartam, 1994).

Skills Needed

The skills needed based on mental resources is abstract thinking. The other skills needed is successful analysis of issues. And the last is excellent communication skills; this helps the engineer to communicate with others.

Job OutlookFor example, being in the UAE one gets about USD 100,000, the European Union, USD 80,000, America between USD 70, 000 and 120,000. The poorest is Africa where an engineer can be paid even USD 30,000 per year.

ReferencesFlood, I., & Kartam, N. (1994). Neural networks in civil engineering. I: Principles and understanding. Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering, 8(2), 131-148.

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Data Transformation Method

Data Transformation Method

Data Transformation: Remote Sensing

Contents

TOC o “1-3” h z u HYPERLINK l “_Toc323462844” CHAPTER TWO PAGEREF _Toc323462844 h 2

HYPERLINK l “_Toc323462845” LITERATURE REVIEW PAGEREF _Toc323462845 h 2

HYPERLINK l “_Toc323462846” Introduction PAGEREF _Toc323462846 h 2

HYPERLINK l “_Toc323462847” Mapping and Classification of Forest Species PAGEREF _Toc323462847 h 3

HYPERLINK l “_Toc323462848” Continuum-Removed Absorption PAGEREF _Toc323462848 h 4

HYPERLINK l “_Toc323462849” Data Transformation through Discrete Wavelet PAGEREF _Toc323462849 h 8

HYPERLINK l “_Toc323462850” Data Transformation through First derivative PAGEREF _Toc323462850 h 10

HYPERLINK l “_Toc323462851” Conclusion PAGEREF _Toc323462851 h 11

HYPERLINK l “_Toc323462852” Bibliography PAGEREF _Toc323462852 h 14

CHAPTER TWOLITERATURE REVIEWIntroductionRemote sensing methods have found their application in evaluating the absorption of foliar macro elements for various grasses and plants even though it has mostly been done under laboratory conditions, which are generally controlled in nature. The increased use of remote sensing in management of forest and natural resources is as a result of substantial advancements in spectral resolutions coupled with advancement in data processing techniques over recent years. These have enabled production or generation of meticulous maps for cataloging forest communities, specific plant species, groups and sub-groups of species, in addition to forest species can be generated to provide a better source of information for an array of administrative resolutions and environmental applications.

Nevertheless, remote sensing is a vital technique that helps in boosting the understanding of flora and fauna in terms of feeding patterns and other living patterns. It is therefore imperative that the quality of data collected be of high quality to improve the quality of judgment from the information gathered. Therefore, in order to improve on discrimination and classification of forest species, it is essential that the data acquired via remote sensing be as helpful and high quality as possible. Data transformation is one of the techniques that have been used to remove the noise contained in the hyperspectral reflectance data to obtain accurate measurements of biochemicals and macronutrients in the forest species. In light of this, this literature review focuses on three data transformation methods that help in noise removal in the hyperspectral data obtained through remote sensing of Eucalyptus. The methods focused on are Continuum removal, discrete wavelet and First derivative.

Mapping and Classification of Forest SpeciesMapping and classification of the spatial distribution of individual Eucalyptus species or any other forest species is a significant ecological subject that calls for sustained study to correspond with developments in remote sensing equipments. The use of high spatial resolution (80cm) or hyperspectral remote sensing imager data has been scrutinized and examined by various studies for mapping tree biophysical aspects in different places around the world. For instance, Goodwin et al (2010) conducted a study in which they used hyperspectral data from the Compact Airborne Spectrographic Imager 2 (CASI-2) for discrimination, classification and development of appropriate mapping for the Australian eucalypt forest. In the study, CASI-2 provided an operative dataset to enable effectual discrimination and allow for generation of maps for spectrally multifaceted species thereby allowing for successful sub-genus grouping. The use of high spatial resolution dataset enabled proper discrimination of individual tree crowns of the Eucalyptus their crown aspects like sunlit aspects and shaded aspects.

On the other hand, spectral data from ten narrow bands ranging from 400nm to 700 nm in the visible range and data from ranges from 700nm to 1300nm within the near-infrared wavelengths provided comprehensive data for thin foliage absorption and reflective aspects (for instance, the green reflectance climax at 550 nm). The findings of the study indicated that economically significant Syncarpia glomulifera (Turpentine) can be successfully discriminated within communities that have assorted species. While the study employed a multi-stage analysis, strong spectral resemblance were exhibited by the foremost two phases of analysis for specific eucalypt tree species that were once more replicated by low CASI-2 categorization accuracies. Spatial resolution relates to the size of the pixel and the acquisition of higher spatial resolutions not only bolsters the ability to detect targets besides allowing the assessment of spatial correlations between pixels within particular tree crowns (Franklin et al. 2000). In contrast, Spectral resolution indicates the bandwidth response for a specific band. Constricted spectral bands (<10nm) can intensify the number of bands documented for a given optical region and help in targeting particular absorption attributes such as chlorophyll absorption of the plant leaves.

Continuum-Removed AbsorptionVarious studies have established that continuum-removed absorption is a useful data transformation method that can be used to compare the predicted measurements of mineral distribution against the mapping band shapes of the remotely sensed data (e.g. Roberts et al 2011; Datt 2000; Muya and Oguge 2000). Kokaly and Clark (1999) conducted a study in which they applied the continuum-removed absorption method alongside a refined method of band depth analysis of biochemical absorption features in studying dried plant material of Eucalyptus species and found that when these two methods are used three problems are overcome. In a follow-up study by Kokaly (2001), the study found that this method can appropriately be used in vegetation science.

Since the remote sensing of macronutrients helps in determination of plant quality in terms of determination of plant growth and development or health status, studies have employed the continuum-removed absorption method to help in understanding the plant quality of Eucalyptus especially in the tropical rangelands (e.g. Datt 2000). In their study, Muya and Oguge (2000) found that the use of continuum-removal minimizes the problem of over-fitting when near-infrared spectroscopy laboratory methods are used to estimate macronutrients at the canopy level of the tropical rainforests.

First, the problem of inconsistency that has been noted when methods such as multiple linear regression analysis are used across different vegetation types. In addition, these regression methods suffer problems of over-fitting and when the number of wavebands used is more than the samples, there is a higher likelihood of getting higher spectral variability (Kokaly & Clark 1999). Since spectral variability is independent of biochemical concentration, spectral variability is another problem that is solved when continuum removal is used in data transformation given that by using continuum removal the known chemical absorption features of the Eucalyptus are standardized (Zhang et al 2006).

Another problem that necessitates noise removal in the spectral data is that when dealing with canopies in large forest species, water that may be present in the canopies masks absorption features thereby complicating the remote sensing of the biochemicals more so at the field level (Cheng et al 2011). This problem becomes worse when soil background features together with atmospheric absorption effects are considered. Thus, the use of continuum removal standardizes the data by overcoming these problems and removing undesirable noise from the spectral data. When Kokaly and Clark (1999) used the band depth analysis with continuum removal in their study, they established that there is a strong correlation between nitrogen concentration and absorption (r2 = 0.95). They used dried plant material of Eucalyptus sub-genera. In another laboratory experiment, Curran et al., (2001) applied the methodology used by Kokaly and Clark on 12 macronutrients and achieved higher accuracy. It is however notable that most studies have been conducted under laboratory conditions rather than field level. In addition, not many studies have aimed at exploring or estimating foliar nutrient status of certain nutrients such as calcium, potassium, and magnesium.

The following diagram shows a graph of reflectance plotted against wavelength.

Figure SEQ Figure * ARABIC 1: Mean canopy spectrum and whole fresh leaf spectrum.

In the diagram, HYMAP 3-m spatial resolution data for 60 mature eucalypt trees was obtained. The researchers, Huang et al (2004) were interested in getting comparatively pure spectrum hence they located each of the individual eucalypt using the false color image of the HYMAP. They achieved this via field inspection. Since the sensor receives reflectance from both vertical mixture of the foreground and the background, separating tree pixels from the adjacent pixels is considerably easy given that tree pixels are different color to the background (Huang et al 2004). When the researchers applied the continuum removal data transform method, they obtained the following spectral profile.

Figure SEQ Figure * ARABIC 2: Continuum Removed Spectral Profile of eucalypt

For the study, Huang et al (2004) used the continuum removal method calculated as the band depth normalized as a ratio of the band depth at the centre of the absorption aspect and they used the following formula:

Where:

R is the reflectance at the waveband under consideration Ri represents the reflectance of the continuum line at the waveband being considered, Rc represents the reflectance at the centre of the absorption feature and Ric represents the reflectance of the continuum line at the center of the absorption feature.

In another study, Mutanga and Skidmore (2003) carried out a study in which they aimed at developing further and extending the band depth analysis method to estimate the concentration of the above macronutrients. The researchers enhanced the accuracy and validity of their study by combining the short wave infrared absorption effects that had earlier been used by Kokaly and Clark with two other key absorption features situated in the visible region. The effect of water is minimal in this region. Mutanga and Skidmore (2003) further developed and tested a modified first derivative reflectance approach to enhance the objective of continuum removal in data transformation.

Data Transformation through Discrete WaveletWavelet transform has in recent times become a very popular data transformation method when it comes to analysis, noise removal and compression of signals and images. Various research studies have been carried out exploring the latent benefits of combining active and passive remotely sensed data for assessment of forest structures (e.g. Banskota et al 2011). Image fusion has been applied as a way maintaining the incongruent data features that might be relevant to mapping of the forest structures under consideration. In the study carried out by Jan et al (2011), Eucalyptus plantations in the midlands of South Africa were studied using the near-infrared and the visible bands of ASTER and a fine beam Radarsat-1 images. ASTER is the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer. The researchers obtained the data and modified it using the discrete wavelet transformation. In addition, the researchers obtained spatially documented data sets for the 38 plantations for the sake of comparisons between the measured data and the referenced data. In order to test whether fused data sets could produce better statistical models, the researchers applied ordinary least squares regression and multiple regression analyses to obtain empirical relationships. In their findings, it was established that single bands from both data sets did not provide sufficient adeptness for modeling basal area or even merchantable volume of timber. The adjusted R2 produced values that ranged below 0.3. when they used an optimized multiple regression, they got improved results in terms of mean and standard deviation when they compared the results to those generated from single bands (also in Zhang et al 2006). Nevertheless, these were still found to be unsuitable for application or mapping of forest species (Gong et al 2001). Williams and Amaratunga (1995) used Discrete Wavelet transform in their study and obtained the following results after data transformation.

Figure SEQ Figure * ARABIC 3: Discrete Wavelet Transform using Low Pass (a) and High Pass (b) (Williams & Amaratunga 1995)

Studies have shown that since more vigorous statistical methods are requisite for investigating phenological time series due to their characteristic of being noisy and non-stationary, wavelet transform analytic methods have been found to handle such data easily (e.g. Zhang et al 2006). Hudson et al (2011) conducted a study in which they delved to characterize flowering of eucalypt and the climate influences this flowering. In the study, the researchers used wavelet transform to remove noise from the remote sensing data. They used maximal overlap discrete wavelet transform to analyze the flowering records of four Eucalyptus subgenera. The flowering records were for the period between 1940 and 1970 and identified four sub-constituents in each flowering sequence. The subcomponents were the non-flowering phase, the duration cycle, the annual cycle and intensity cycle. A diminishing overall tendency in flowering was recognized by the maximal overlap discrete wavelet transform when the series were smoothed. Similar results were achieved by Cheng et al (2011), in which the researchers observed that wavelet correlation found the same simultaneous effects of climate on flowering for all the four Eucalyptus subgenera. When the researchers carried a wavelet cross-correlation analysis, they found that rainfall and temperature have a cyclical effect on the peak flowering intensity of Eucalyptus (P < 0.0001). For every species of Eucalyptus, there are 6 months of the yearly cycle in which any particular climate variable affects flowering intensity positively. In the same cycle, there are 6 months that any specific climate variable influences flowering peak negatively. The study established that for all the Eucalyptus species, rainfall wields a negative impact as long as the temperature is positive.

In another study, Curran et al (1995) used wavelet data transform method to investigate the relationship between reflectance of near infrared or visible beam and the chlorophyll content in Eucalyptus leaves. In the study, the reflectance properties of near infrared and the visible beam for the leaves of several Eucalyptus were analyzed to establish suitable indicators for remotely sensing the chlorophyll content in the leaves (Hudson et al 2011). The study employed the use of a scatter correction method to the reflectance spectra to decrease the additive and multiplicative scattering consequences of foliar surface and interior structure. The study further established that with an improved calibration of the chlorophyll content, reflectance near 710nm wavelength demonstrated greatest response to chlorophyll content. Moreover, reflectance near 550nm showed a less sensitivity to chlorophyll content in the Eucalyptus leaves. Generally, there are two levels of discrete wavelet transform that can be used to transform hyperspectral data (Hudson et al 2011). There is the single level technique and the multiple level decomposition technique.

Data Transformation through First derivativeVisible and near infrared areas of spectrum frequently exhibit spectral differences, which are often used to describe various vegetation classes. Reflectance spectrum and first derivative spectrum that stretch from 350 to 700 nm are used to enhance the shape disparities between the spectral signatures for every tree species used or included in a sample. By precisely encapsulating these spectral differences, it is possible to improve vegetation classification by allowing for investigation of band ratios and vegetation indices. In the study done by Datt (2000), the best performing reflectance index ratio was the (R850-R710)/ (R850-R680) and hence it was proposed as the new index for estimating chlorophyll content in higher plants such eucalypt.

While Huang et al (2004) conducted a study in which they employed continuum removal to transform the hyperspectral data for the eucalypt tree, they also used standard derivative method to transform the same data and compare the outcomes. However, the researchers used the standard derivative data transform method to estimate nitrogen concentration in the eucalypt trees. They used the standard derivative method to transform the log (1/R) spectra data where R is the reflectance at the waveband under consideration. In order to reach the best possible combination for the average spectra as well as the maximum spectra, the researchers tried various scatter correction methods. They however established that Modified Partial Least Squares method resulted to a higher coefficient of determination when maximum spectra were used as compared to when the mean spectra were used. The results of the study by Huang et al (2004) agree with the findings by Mutanga and Skidmore (2003) where the latter carried out a study to investigate the correlation between nitrogen absorption and the chlorophyll level in eucalypt. For the study by Huang et al (2004), when the standard derivative method was used for nitrogen absorption in eucalypt, the following diagram illustrates the results.

Conclusion

Developing maps for spatial distribution of particular species is a significant ecological aspect that calls for sustained research to match the advances achieved in remote sensing technologies. Due to the characteristic of the hyper-spectral data of being noisy and non-stationary, it is imperative to use any of the wavelet transform analytic methods, which have been found to handle such data easily. The literature review has revealed that the of wavelet transform methods or techniques helps in removing noise from the hyperspectral data hence improve quality of the data for the sake of comparison with referenced data for individual plant species. The review has also revealed that the studies that used maximal overlap discrete wavelet transform to analyze the flowering records of forest species were effective in reducing inconsistencies and achieving increased accuracies. Out of many studies reviewed, many of them established that the use of data transform techniques for noise removal was not only a good approach to improving discrimination and classification among individual plant species but also increased discrimination and classification accuracies. The studies reviewed further show that reflectance spectrum and first derivative spectrum that stretch from 350 to 700 nm are effectively used to enhance the shape disparities between the spectral signatures for every tree species used or included in a sample. This is achieved by precisely encapsulating the spectral differences thereby improving vegetation classification by allowing for investigation of band ratios and vegetation indices.

The findings of the literature review also indicate that due to the economic viability of most of the eucalypt sub-species such as Syncarpia glomulifera (Turpentine) discrimination within communities that have mixed species can be achieved successfully using data transformation methods highlighted such as continuum removal, standard derivative and wavelet transformation. Lastly, the review has also showed that the math treatment method adopted also affects the consistency of the results hence it is important to choose method astutely. Most studies successfully used modified least squares regression method with increased accuracy.

BibliographyAsner, G. P., Wessman, C. A., Bateson, C. A., and Privette, J. L., (2000): “Impact of tissue, canopy and landscape factors on the hyperspectral reflectance variability of arid zone ecosystems” Remote Sensing of Environment” 74, pp. 69- 84.

Banskota, A., Wynne, R.H., & Kayastha, N. (2011). “Improving within-genus tree species discrimination using the discrete wavelet transform applied to airborne hyperspectral data” International Journal of Remote Sensing, 32, 3551-3563

Cheng, T., Rivard, B. and Sánchez-Azofeifa A. (2011) “Spectroscopic determination of leaf water content using continuous wavelet analysis” Remote Sensing of Environment 115 (2): 659–670

Clark, R. N., and Roush, T. L., (1984): “Reflectance spectroscopy: quantitative analysis techniques for remote sensing applications” Journal of Geophysical Research, 89, pp. 6329-6340.

Clevers, J. G. P. W., (1999): “The use of imaging spectrometry for agricultural applications. ISPRS” Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, 54, pp. 299-304.

Clevers, J., and Buker, C., (1991) “Feasibility of the red edge index for the detection of nitrogen deficiency” Proceedings of the 5th International Colloquium – Remote sensing, 165 – 168.

Curran, P. J., (1989) “Remote sensing of foliar chemistry” Remote Sensing of Environment, 30, pp. 271-278

Curran, P. J., Dungan, J. L., and Peterson, L., (2001) “Estimating the foliar biochemical concentration of leaves with reflectance spectrometry: testing the Kokaly and Clark methodologies” Remote Sensing of Environment, 76, pp. 349-359.

Curran, P. J., Dungan, J. L., Macler, B. A., and Plummer, S. E., (1991) “The effect of a Red leaf pigment on the relationship between red edge and chlorophyll concentration” Remote Sensing of Environment, 35, pp. 69-76.

Curran, P. J., Windham, W. R., and Gholz, H. L., (1995) “Exploring the relationship between reflectance red edge and chlorophyll concentration in slash pine leaves” Tree Physiology, 15, pp. 203-206.

Datt, B. (2000). “Recognition of eucalyptus forest species using hyperspectral reflectance data” In T.I. Stein (Ed.), Igarss 2000: Ieee 2000 International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium, Vol I – Vi, Proceedings (pp. 1405-1407). New York: Ieee

Dawson, T. P., and Curran, P. J., (1998) “A new technique for interpolating the reflectance red edge position” International Journal of Remote sensing, 19, pp. 2133-2139

Elvidge, C. D., (1990) “Visible and near infrared reflectance characteristics of dry plant materials” International Journal of Remote Sensing, 11, pp. 1775-1795

Fillella, I., and Penuelas, J., (1994) “The red edge position and shape as indicators of plant chlorophyll content, biomass and hydric status” International Journal of Remote sensing, 15, pp. 1459 – 1470.

Foley, B., Mcllwee, A., Lawler, I., Agragones, L., Woolnough, A. P., and Berding, N., (1998) “Ecological applications of near infrared spectroscopy – a tool for rapid, cost effective prediction of the composition of plant and animal tissues and aspects of animal performance” Oecologia, 116, pp. 293 – 305.

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How the United States higher learning education has been affected by Globalization

Data projection and ethics

How the United States higher learning education has been affected by Globalization

Globalization is an essential aspect in society, as it affects almost everyone’s life. In the global world, many changes are occurring on a daily basis, especially in the educational sector. The article chosen is by Wildavsky, 2011 titled “Academic Globalization Should Be Welcomed, Not Feared”. In engineering and science, American universities are known for being top notch, due to the research facilities they have. They are praised for their innovation and the scholarships, which they offer. This means that competition has increased all over the world in terms of higher education learning. Competent students are being targeted from different parts of the world to join American universities. Wildavsky believes that there is a reason to become worried, because many well educated Americans are working in other countries. He believes that globalization is bringing about negative aspects and a solution ought to be found. Furthermore, enterprises of academics are becoming global, and this is mostly in the sector of the sciences. It should be known that consumption is an essential aspect which influences globalization among adults. Learning and education are related to globalization and this need to be known. According to research, it has been found out that 57% of American students, who are around three million, study outside the United States. Wildavsky encourages Americans to ensure that they find solutions to deal with problems associated with globalization on higher education. He believes that the United States has the needed resources to ensure Americans are well educated (Wildavsky, 2011).

This article is extremely interesting, and thus the reason why I choose it for the reading. It is reflective as well as informative to any reader. A lot of valuable information is provided concerning statistics related to the number of American students obtaining PHD’s from foreign universities. This is in the field of physics, engineering and computer science. This is going on to extreme levels to the point whereby, American universities are not the same as they were a few decades ago. As a result of reading this article, I am aware that globalization has adverse effects on American adult learning. Adults who want to obtain PHD’s are attending foreign universities’ such as Peking and Tsinghua (Wildavsky, 2011). This is taking place in great numbers as compared to American universities, which have low numbers of such type of students. Those who are taking the course PSE6660 will have valuable information regarding how to become thinkers with free minds. This is the reason why most times, I found myself reflecting on this article. People who have an interest in adult education will be informed about what is taking place in the United States, due to globalization in the education sector.

The choices made by consumers determine if one is able to learn in the United States or abroad. This is the reason why most times I visit many websites as well as watch television. This will provide sufficient information regarding the behaviors of consumers. According to Covey Franklin, who is known for management of time, believes that consumers influence their lives. This is the reason why it is difficult for me not to watch Food TV as it makes my life worth living.

Wildavsky’s article ensures that those in the adult education sector are aware of essential aspects. Through having a possibly sense, Americans will be aware of how higher education has been impacted by higher education (Wildavsky, 2011). This is because the United States education market share is being eroded by European, Middle Eastern, and Asian universities. If a solution is not found immediately, the consequences might be detrimental. It should be known that competition is beneficial as the results are rewarding. It will also provide a great opportunity for improved higher education as well as improved excellence in the academic sector. All members as well as classmates undertaking PSE6660 should read this article (Boudousquie & Maniam & Leavell, 2007). They will benefit greatly and acquire a deeper understanding of higher education, foreign competition, and globalization. Everyone is encouraged to reflect on this article and how it will help improve their lives, both students and students.

According to an article by Terenzini and Pascarella (2011), students face many challenges while they are in college. This is because in the 21st century, education is greatly affected by globalization. Students have to ensure that the find ways of dealing with issues concerning education. They have to find ways to pay for their tuition, as well as other expenses, which they incur. The authors try and find solutions for dealing with such issues caused by globalization.

Heather Higgins believes that those investing their time in higher education learning should engage in research, which will help them. In the year 2006, some scholars from Fulbright became involved in research. They were interested in finding out the extent of globalization in universities located in different locations. Also, in another article by the same author, she sorts to find out participation, which occurs in higher education in Ireland and the United Kingdom. The impact on globalization is high and those in this sector seek to find out how they can ensure that they are not affected as much. This means that most adults want to learn in universities located in their region (Higgins, 2007). Most students do not want to study abroad in countries such as America and Spain. They want to ensure that the education they receive is in their country. Boudousquie & Maniam & Leavell (2007) believes that the economy of the United States has also been affected by globalization. The higher education sector has not been spared either as the consequences are being witnessed. Nothing much can be done to reduce its impact, but students should ensure that they promote their academic institutions. Thus, the issue on globalization should be known.

References

Wildavsky, Ben. (2011). Academic Globalization Should Be Welcomed, Not Feared

Globalization, Education, U.S. Higher Education. BOOKINGS. Retrieved from http://www.brookings.edu/articles/2010/0115_globalization_wildavsky.aspx

Boudousquie, Renee. & Maniam, Bala. & Leavell, Hadley. (2007). Globalization: It’s Impact on the United States Economy. The Business Review, Cambridge. 94-100.

Pascarella, T. & Terenzini, T. (2011). Studying College Students in the 21st Century: Meeting New Challenges, The Review of Higher Education, 35. 151-158. Retrieved from http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/review_of_higher_education/summary/v021/21.2pascarella.html

Higgins, Heather. (2007). International Research from the Fulbright New Century Scholars 2006. Higher Education Quarterly, 61, 2. Retrieved from http://www.wiley.com/bw/journal.asp?ref=0951-5224

Higgins, Heather. (2006). Patterns and Processes of Higher Education Participation: UK and Ireland, Higher Education Quarterly, 60,4. Retrieved from HYPERLINK “http://www.wiley.com/bw/journal.asp?ref=0951-5224” http://www.wiley.com/bw/journal.asp?ref=0951-5224

Database And Data Warehousing Design

Database And Data Warehousing Design

Database And Data Warehousing Design

Factors supporting the need for a data warehouse

Due to the enormous amount data from different sources, the company needs a system to help if leverage its data so as to obtain the desired outcome. In order to maintain competitive advantage in the market, the company needs to use its information as an asset to make decisions. To use the information, the company needs a means of gathering, storage, and analyzing the data. The development and implementation of the data warehouse will provide the following benefits:

The data warehouse will be able to handle the increasing data that the company is receiving. In addition, the data warehouse will be able to process data from a variety of sources containing both structured and unstructured data. Thus this will facilitate the need to develop a data warehouse.

The data warehouse will be aligned to the strategic objectives of the company. Therefore, data processing will be carried out according to the specific needs of the company. The need for a system that will be aligned to the strategic vision of the company will therefore facilitate the need to develop a data warehouse.

The data warehouse will provide the company with a secure platform which can be used by the staff to perform their activities. Thus, this will facilitate the need for the company to develop a data warehouse.

The data warehouse will enable collection of data from all the departments of the company into a central location. This will allow comprehensive processing of data in one central location. The results of data processing will reflect the performance of the entire company and not a specific department. This will enable quick and quality decision making which the company needs. Thus, there is the need to develop a data warehouse.

The data warehouse will be constructed using standard interfaces which will allow interoperability between systems. This will facilitate outsourcing some of the activities such as data backup into other companies like cloud service providers. Thus, this facilitates the need to develop a data warehouse (March & Hevner, 2007).

Best practices that the company should follow

There are various best practices which must be followed by the company in order to develop a data warehouse that will meet the requirements of all the stakeholders.

The data warehouse should comply with the Information Technology (IT) requirements. These include development of standard interfaces and data security requirements. The data warehouse should meet all the legal requirements of the industry.

The data warehouse should be treated as an information asset of the company. Therefore, the data warehouse should be aligned to the strategic vision of the company. There should be a thorough analysis of all the requirements of the company before development of the warehouse. In addition, all the stakeholders of the data warehouse need to be comprehensively involved. This will ensure that the data warehouse will meet all the requirements.

The data warehouse should not be developed at once (Dung, Rahayu & Taniar, 2007). The best practice is to construct the data warehouse in phases so as to ensure that all the requirements are fully satisfied at each stage. In addition, carrying out the development in staged will allow the flexibility to accommodate any necessary changes which may be required.

The other best practice is to ensure that the data warehouse is usable. Usability is an important aspect of any information system. It will be a great loss to the company to construct an appropriate data warehouse which is not usable to the users of the company. Poor usability means that the employees of the company find it difficult to learn and use the system optimally. There, the data warehouse should be usable to ensure that it will be highly productive.

The other best practice is associated with accessibility. The data warehouse should be accessible to all the users of the company as required. The data warehouse should be used as a center for unlimited access of information to its users. However, access to information should be controlled to ensure that only authorized people can access the information (Jukic, 2006). It is important to have the data warehouse administrator who will be responsible for controlling access to the warehouse. The users of the data warehouse need to be authenticated by use of authentication mechanisms such as use of a username and a password.

Schema supporting the company’s business and processes

In order to develop a suitable schema that will support the business and operations of the company, the following assumptions will be made. The first assumption is that the company operates in the health care sector. The company collects patient and hospital data for storage and analysis. The company collects patient and hospital data from its various branches in the country. The Extraction-transformation-loading model will be used. The diagram below indicates a star data schema which shows how the data warehouse will monitor hospital and patient information between two of its branches. The star schema shown below is made up of one fact table and a four-dimensional table.

Figure SEQ Figure * ARABIC 1: Star Schema for the Warehouse

Appendix

Figure SEQ Figure * ARABIC 2: Flow of data in the data warehouse

Figure SEQ Figure * ARABIC 3: Entity Relationship Diagram

Figure SEQ Figure * ARABIC 4: Patient registration data flow diagram

References

Dung, X. T., Rahayu, W., & Taniar, D. (2007). A high performance integrated web data warehousing. Cluster Computing, 10(1), 95-109.

Jukic, N. (2006). Modeling strategies and alternatives for data warehousing projects. Communications of the ACM, 49(4), 83-88.

March, S. T., & Hevner, A. R. (2007). Integrated decision support systems: A data warehousing perspective. Decision Support Systems, 43(3), 1031-1043.

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Davidson’s Theory of Meaning

Davidson’s Theory of Meaning

Davidson’s Theory of Meaning

Author

Institution

Introduction

Philosophy has been a fundamental part of the human society. It has particularly played an immense role in enhancing the capacity of individuals to think critically about certain aspects of their lives, as well as generate ideas on the manner in which these issues should be viewed. Needless to say, different philosophers have come up with different theories aimed at explaining different aspects. Such was (and still is the case) for Davidson’s theory of meaning, an empirical theory whose philosophical work revolves around describing the form taken by a theory of meaning for a language, as well as the nature of evidence that will be deemed as confirming it (Lycan, 2008). Once these issues are sorted out, Davidson opines that there will not be any more questions pertaining to what the “meaning is” or even what the “meanings are. The theory of meaning aims at stating something, the knowledge of which would be sufficient in interpreting utterances of speakers of the language to which it would be applicable. The interpretation of a speaker revolves around saying what her utterances are saying.

Davidson underlines the fact that the theory has to give the meanings pertaining to infinitely numerous sentences. However, this knowledge has to be finitely specifiable if the language is tto be learnable (Lycan, 2008). In essence, a theory of meaning would not consist in an infinite number of sentences and their meanings, rather their meanings would have to be generated recursively. In this regard, Davidson proposes that a theory of meaning should be in the form of a Tarskian truth definition pertaining to a language (Lycan, 2008). The Tarskian truth definition pertaining to a language underlines the fact that there exists no need to suppress the obvious connection or link between a definition of truth and the concept of meaning. Tarski had stated that the definition functions through appropriating the necessary, as well as sufficient conditions pertaining to the truth in every sentence (Lycan, 2008). Giving truth conditions comes as a technique for giving the meaning of a sentence. The knowledge of the semantic truth pertaining to a language would essentially be the knowledge pertaining to what it is for any sentence to be truth. This amounts to the comprehension of the language.

Of particular note is the fact that Davidson was not concerned with the construction of actual theories of meaning for actual languages, rather he was concerned with getting clearer on how such a theory should look like. For Davidson, the explanation of the shape taken by a theory of meaning should specify the forms that the theorems and axioms of the theory should take, as well as the evidence that must be used in testing the theory (Lycan, 2008). Davidson underlines the fact that a rigorous explanation of the evidence and form that is appropriate to the theory of meaning would offer as much of a philosophical elucidation of the linguistic meaning as an individual would need or even reasonably expect.

Davidson offers two constraints pertaining to the form that theories of meanings would have. First, there is the compositionality constraint, which states that the theory of meaning pertaining to a natural language L has to show the manner in which the sentences pertaining to L would be determined by the features pertaining to the simple expressions that make up the sentences coupled with the order or the appearance of the expressions (Lycan, 2008). In addition, there is the constraint called convention T (Tarski style), which states that the theorems pertaining to a theory of meaning for object language L has to take the form of “S is true iff”, in which case “S” would be replaced by an expression in the metalanguage that refers to a sentence in L, while “P” would be replaced by translation pertaining to that sentence in the metalanguage.

However, Davidsonian theory of meaning has not escaped some element of criticism. First, it is worth noting that some sentences that do not have the truth conditions may still be meaningful. For example, a sentence such as “Are you enjoying the class?” is still meaningful. In addition, sentences that have similar truth conditions may still have different meanings. For instance, a sentence such as “We married and had a child” as opposed to “We had a child and married” look like they have similar truth conditions but would have different meanings. Moreover, Davidson’s theory of meaning does not provide clarity as to the manner in which the truth conditions pertaining to some complex sentences are dependent on those pertaining to their parts (Lycan, 2008). On the same note, it would be illogical to give meaning pertaining to a sentence such as “I am the inspector” by stating that “I am the inspector” is true if and only if (iff) I am the inspector as the truth will be dependent on the individual that is saying it. To this problem, Davidson would undoubtedly call for the relativization to the times, locations and speakers, where a theory of truth would be specific as to what it is for a certain sentence to be true as said by a certain person at a time and at a location (Lycan, 2008). In addition, Davidson’s T constraint has not escaped criticism. Critics have noted that not every other T-sentence has the capacity to give meanings. For instance, since “snow is white and grass is green”, it would follow that snow is white if and only if (iff) grass is green. In this case, the “iff” would be the material biconditional”. However, thi would entail the T-sentence: “Grass is green” is true if and only if snow is white. Davidson would counter this critique by borrowing from Tarski who stated that the T-sentense would be false as “Snow is white” does not come as synonymous with “Grass is green”. Even then, however, this would essentially be circular (Lycan, 2008). A theory of truth is subject to empirical testing. Rational English speakers, who also largely believe the truth would not be correctly interpreted as meaning that snow is white when saying grass is green. This would essentially entail some empirical evidence for denying any insinuation that there is an element of truth in insinuating that grass is green if an only if snow is white. This underlines the inadequacy of davidson’s insinuation as to the treatment of sentences when trying to determine their truth and meaning. Nevertheless, this theory can only be interpreted in conjunction with other theories, while taking care of the conditions that it places or the rules it espouses in the interpretation of the meaning of sentences.

References

Lycan, W. G (2008). Philosophy of Language: A Contemporary Introduction. New York: Routledge

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