Friday, December 18, 2020

Jigsaw, Dating App That Hides Users’ Faces, launches in Charlotte, NCTo Fight Superficial Dating App Culture

Posted By on Fri, Dec 18, 2020 at 11:18 AM



WHAT: Jigsaw, the dating app that empowers people to put their personality first and be their true selves, has launched in Charlotte, NC tapping into nationwide consumer dissatisfaction with shallow dating app culture. Jigsaw is the only dating app that both, covers peoples’ faces and calls out the harmful nature of the way dating apps make people feel, and it’s on a  mission to save singles from superficial dating. 


WHY: New research reveals 70% of American users find dating apps shallow and superficial, and want a better alternative, as pandemic restrictions provoke people to seek deeper, more meaningful connections. 


WHERE: Now launching in Charlotte after a noteworthy New York debut in November 2020, which amassed a community of over 10,000 singles in less than one month. The company has goals to attract and empower 100,000 singles to date differently by March 2021. 


HOW IT’S DIFFERENT:  Jigsaw is committed to providing a platform for people who want dating with character and conversation. This is evident in a number of distinctive features it has built into the platform:

  • Digital jigsaw puzzle overlaid on users’ faces that disappear the more they chat

  • Banning of up-close selfies and filters 

  • No information on physical appearances (height, body shape, ethnicity) is requested

  • Instead users are asked to describe themselves and what they enjoy doing

  • Users can choose to have their profile authenticated by a real human to minimize catfishing

  • App blocks progress if profile has limited amount of personal information


About Jigsaw: 

Jigsaw is a dating app for people who want dating with character and conversation, not fakes and filters. It has one clear mission: to save singles from superficial dating. Jigsaw was founded in Leeds, England, in 2016, by Alex Durrant (CEO) and Max Adamski (Chief Product Officer) and has since become one of the fastest growing dating apps in the UK. Since inception, the company has raised over $4.7m in funding.

The app is committed to helping users match based on personality over looks. Its USP is a digital puzzle piece that is overlaid on users’ faces and disappears the more users send messages to each other. Other notable features include the banning of selfies and filters and the app does not request any physical information (height, body shape and ethnicity). The revolutionary dating app launched into the United States, in New York City, October 2020, followed by 20 other metropolitan cities before the end of the year.


Jessica JarrettSenior Account Executive917-714-9296–Manifest Incite – the thought leadership platform curated by Manifest. Read our latest here. 

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

GET DETAILED INFORMATION ABOUT (SEO)

Posted By on Wed, Dec 16, 2020 at 10:42 AM


Search engine optimization, abbreviated as SEO, is an internet marketing strategy that considers how search engines, like Google, works. This strategy is to get know-how about computer-programmed algorithms. These algorithms of search engines dictate their behavior about what people are searching for.

ASAEL DREYER SEO is a process that can improve your site ranking on search engines. It can improve the visibility of your site for relevant searches. In this way, you get increased traffic to your site.

Process of SEO:

An SEO process requires the use of SEO tools and specific tactics. An effective SEO process requires a couple of hours, but its fruit will give you a high ranking of the website and increased traffic.

The steps and strategies to do effective SEO are as follows:

  1. Research:

The first process of SEO is research, and it includes two kinds of research:

  • Keyword research

  • Competitor research or analysis

In the keyword research, you will use some of the SEO tools. These tools help you to extract a group of keywords that help in the optimization of the site. It is a time-consuming process.

In the competitor research, you have to do a complete analysis of about 8-10 competitors. In this way, you can get a basic idea of identifying the priority areas.

  1. Report or goal-setting process:

After keyword research and competitor analysis, you have to target your site's position in the search engine. It is essential to have access to site traffic information.

These stats indicate how search teams locate and engage with the subject site, such as which web pages, what words are used for keywords, bounce rates, most shared content, etc. In taking other internet marketing assessments, knowing the site's traffic level and the source of its references may also be a crucial tool.

  1. Creating a list of keywords:

It is the first step in an SEO strategy. Everything revolves around keywords in SEO. Try using those keywords which are long-tail as long-tail keywords are considered less competitive than short-tail keywords.

The long-tail keywords have a low search volume, so you can easily rank them on the search engines.

  1. Analyzing Search engine' first page:

After you have collected a group of keywords, it is time to do a competitor analysis. You can do this by searching for your selected keywords on Google's first page. You can also use SEO tools like SERP for this. Search what other high ranked websites are doing for this keyword.


  1. Content creation:

In search engine optimization, content creation is considered asking. The search engines appreciate the quality content; you will be supported in a few significant respects by high volume, high-quality content relevant to your business.

A platform with high-quality content of interest would give the visitors a reason to stay and return. The fact that they came to your site was to find details, after all. So, you can get the added advantage of serving precisely what content the search engines want., you have to create high quality and better content than other competitors. Try to keep the tone of your content different from others.


  1. Page optimization:

It includes on-page, off-page, and technical optimization are included in the page optimization. And other than it, you have to bold or do something else to prominent your targeted keywords.

The best way to ensure that the search engines index all the sites of the web as they reach the subject site is to create a site map that provides a well-organized list of links to all the relevant pages of your site and includes a text link to the site map on your home page.

  • On-page SEO:

You can boost your site's ranking by the tactics of on-page SEO. The first technique of on-page SEO is internet linking. In this technique, you connect or link your site that needs boosting with the high authority web pages.

You can also use the technique of Semantic SEO. In this technique, you have to find a group of words related to your target keywords.

  • Off-page SEO:

One of the most considerable things in off-page SEO is link-building. It covers a large part of SEO, and also, it is somewhat challenging to build the links.


  1. Link building:

The influence of social media networking online offers enormous opportunities for businesses willing to devote time to using it. It helps customers develop a social media presence during this stage of the process and collaborate with the customer to use such social media accounts to share site content and communicate with customers and potential customers.

In the era of 2020, you can rank your website by co-relating social media links with the Google rankings. It is considered a Google ranking factor.


Importance of SEO:

SEO is one of the most crucial factors in ranking your site to the search engines. Along with writing quality content, SEO is also essential for ranking. Here are some of the points related to why to use SEO tactics.


  • According to the BrightEdge Organic channel report, about fifty-three percent of the traffic to websites comes from the SEO and organic search.

  • The ranking due to SEO and organic search lasts longer.

  • Search engines appreciate the content that is relevant and informative for most of the searchers.

  • SEO organizes your website to the top

  • SEO makes it easy for visitors to approach the relevant content.

  • SEO adds trust and credibility to your website.

  • SEO increases the user experience

  • SEO mainly affects the buying cycle and so promotes your brand.


Summing up:

Search engine optimization is one of the best tactics to rank your website on search engines. It increases the traffic to your website and grabs the visitors' attraction.


Saturday, December 12, 2020

Why death scares us

Posted By on Sat, Dec 12, 2020 at 1:10 PM

Death is inevitable. It is with us, it shows us the fickle nature of being human, yet it is deeply empowering.

A close friend of my wife is dying of a terminal illness. There is sadness in the air. A reflective sadness that permeates my thoughts, my heart, and my memory. 

Death seems to amplify the times in my life where I have had to give something up, the transition from the old to the new, or when I have literally lost loved ones in this physical expression.

Death also reminds us that we are on borrowed time. Death can inspire us to seize the moment, be present, and be willing to explore the unknown for our "time" is limited. 

In our society, we are so threatened by our mortality. We are so scared of death that we do anything and everything to avoid it and distract ourselves from its reality. 

Ancient cultures would revere the death process - be it metaphorical, literal, or imaginative. They knew that by embracing death, life would also be embraced, remembered, and cherished.

There was something beyond the obvious and physical senses that could only be embraced with a surrender to the perhaps the greatest fear the human heart holds to be "true"... 

Beyond there possibly being an "existence", life or some form of consciousness in motion post physical death we are here, in the now. Life is asking us to be here.

Are you here?

Where is your mind? Where are your worries? Where is your heart? Is it stuck in resentment or what you don't have access to? Is it angry, do you feel defeated? Where is your attention being placed?

What needs to let go of in order to be embraced and loved.

You are not alone...

Power and blessings,

Stefanos


U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $4.5 Million to Boost Wastewater Capacity to Support Growth of Healthcare and Other Businesses in Greenville, North Carolina, Opportunity Zone

Posted By on Sat, Dec 12, 2020 at 12:37 PM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                          Contact:         John Atwood

Friday, December 11, 2020                                                                          JAtwood@eda.gov


WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $4.5 million grant to the Greenville Utilities Commission, Greenville, North Carolina, to make wastewater system infrastructure improvements needed to support the growth of the region’s healthcare sector and other businesses. The EDA grant, to be located in a Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Opportunity Zone, will be matched with nearly $3 million in local funds, is expected to create 46 jobs, retain 700 jobs, and generate $329 million in private investment.

“The Trump Administration is committed to helping American communities obtain the modern infrastructure they need to encourage business attraction and growth,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “This project will provide Greenville with the necessary wastewater infrastructure to support growth in the region’s critical healthcare sector and other businesses. The project’s location in an Opportunity Zone will attract additional investment and further transform the area.”

“High winds, power outages, heavy rains, and flooding as a result of Hurricane Florence severely impacted Pitt County in 2018,” said Dana Gartzke, Performing the Delegated Duties of the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “This project will advance local resiliency efforts by constructing two secondary wastewater treatment plant clarifiers that will support the region’s healthcare and other businesses. The project’s Opportunity Zone designation will further transform and diversify the local economy.”

“In communities of all sizes across our state, leaders are working hard to find funds to improve aging water treatment systems,” said Governor Roy Cooper. “These critical dollars will help Greenville strengthen its infrastructure so the city can continue to support job growth and business expansion.”

“This grant is a big win for Greenville and surrounding counties,” said Senator Thom Tillis. “Wastewater infrastructure improvement is critical for health care and economic growth, creating new jobs and opportunity for future generations. I want to thank Secretary Ross and the administration for their continued investment in our great state of North Carolina.”

This investment was made possible by the regional planning efforts led by the Mid-East Commission, which EDA funds to bring together private and public sectors to create an economic development roadmap to strengthen the regional economy, support private capital investment and create jobs.

The funding announced today goes to one of North Carolina’s 252 Opportunity Zones. Created by President Donald J. Trump’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, Opportunity Zones are spurring economic development in economically-distressed communities nationwide. In June 2019, EDA added Opportunity Zones as an Investment Priority, which increases the number of catalytic Opportunity Zone-related projects that EDA can fund to fuel greater public investment in these areas. To learn more about the Commerce Department’s work in Opportunity Zones, please visit EDA’s Opportunity Zones webpage. To learn more about the Opportunity Zone program, see the Opportunity Now resources page here. To learn more about Opportunity Zone best practices, see the recently released White House Opportunity and Revitalization Council Report to President Trump.

This project is funded by the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019 (Pub. L. 116-20), which provided EDA with $600 million in additional Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) Program funds for disaster relief and recovery for areas affected by Hurricanes Florence, Michael, and Lane, Typhoons Yutu and Mangkhut, wildfires, volcanic eruptions, and other major natural disasters occurring in calendar year 2018, and tornadoes and floods occurring in calendar year 2019, under the Robert T. Stafford Act. Please visit EDA’s Disaster Supplemental webpage for more information.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.


The Matrix

Posted By on Sat, Dec 12, 2020 at 12:35 PM



As an undergraduate at Stanford University, I had the chance to study from a breakthrough professor named Sylvia Wynter. Her central thesis is that human consciousness is not biologically programmed but rather programmed by narrative, or story. Our society and all of its educational disciplines are based on the idea that essentially biology determines consciousness—i.e. the story of Evolution. Wynter challenges that definition of the human as a purely biological being by putting forward the idea that we program our consciousness with narrative and that the purely biological definition is, itself, a story. Genes are able to tell you whether you are predisposed to certain diseases and what you will look like, but they do not determine what type of consciousness you will have.

Needless to say, the validity of her thesis has huge ramifications. Story, in her thesis, is the factor in determining what type of world humans are to live in. From small tribes up to but not including our present society, the centrality of story has not been too downplayed. Here, the assumption the West makes about itself, is that it is reality, meaning outside of story. But what if we, our present “modern” order is as much based on story, in this case, the story of Evolution, as was the first one that emerged out of Africa and all others to follow it. Truly we would live in a radically different world as our entire body of knowledge would have to be rewritten.

Most people assume that the mind has evolved out of Africa and “improved” over time, which has created a paradigm of racism and a “Bell Curve” mentality when it comes to “intelligence.”  When Wynter’s thesis is put forward, the idea that the mind evolved beyond having the capacity for language and symbolic thought and the ability to constitute its own consciousness through myth and narrative, is debunked.  She puts forward the thesis that once the human entered into symbolic thought it was a complete rupture from all other forms of biological life. For once it developed the capacity for language and symbolic thought the human was, unlike all other species, constituting its consciousness through narrative and outside of evolution in a new and distinct way. 

Presently, Evolution acts as the story that holds our social order in place.  It is the origin narrative account of what we are—i.e from a relationship of pure continuity with the primates, (rather than being a new type of entity that constitutes its own consciousness through myth and narrative)-and of how we are to behave-i.e. Evolution puts forward that humans, like animals are biologically programmed to compete amongst ourselves in a free market for resources that are “naturally scarce.” Our entire educational system, including all the disciplines in academia (not just economics), is based on the idea that genes have determined consciousness. Wynter’s challenge to the foundational paradigm of Evolution (in its self-conception as the Agent of history and, specifically, that the mind still evolves) is tantamount to the challenges made to Genesis as the origin narrative for the medieval order.  When Genesis was challenged by a new narrative (as in The Great Chain of Being as put forward by Pico della Mirandola during the Renaissance) a new social order emerged where the State and Laity could then assert hegemony over the Church. The State and Laity (the Monarchy and the landed gentry) were then to be challenged during the “Enlightenment” by the bourgeoisie and their narrative of evolution as the story which puts in place the “free market” (and, obviously, race). From these two examples one can get a blueprint as to how narrative changes bring in new consciousness, new behaviors, new hierarchies, and therefore, a new social order.

In addition, her analysis transforms the “nature” versus “nurture” debate into a “nature” versus “culture” debate. This means that for the matrix identities of “white” and “black,” for instance, to even exist, a story had to be put in place—the story of evolution. Clearly, we are socialized in the context of that story, as identity has so much to do with the way in which we accept that narrative and its racism, or fight against it.


Against the mainstream of academia, therefore, Wynter puts forward the thesis that Evolution is not the author of the social order, any more than gods, God, ancestors, the spirits of nature had been for other peoples. It is the belief in the story of Evolution, and its manifestation through the disciplines of academia, that brings our social order into being and makes “reality,” “race” and “class,” for instance, in our case, experienceable as true. 


In sum, the Western body of knowledge is based on a Two Event thesis. These two unexplainable Events are the creation of the universe in time and the emergence of biological life (from the so-called lightning bolt that hit the swamp). What Wynter puts forward is that there was a “Third Event” to be taken account of: the emergence of the human as a pure rupture with purely biological life. If she is correct, we are headed towards a radically new world.


Contact : mrhamburg@stanfordalumni.org


Friday, December 11, 2020

5 ways in which unstable family relationships harm children

Posted By on Fri, Dec 11, 2020 at 4:45 PM


Any family faces conflicts from time to time, no matter how strong or tight-knitted it is. Fights are normal and sometimes even beneficial if the conflicting parties compromise or eliminate the cause of a misunderstanding. But when family life turns into constant arguments between spouses, this is already an unhealthy situation, which harms children the most.


Conflicts are not always an absolute evil — in some cases, they help partners get rid of the accumulated fatigue and irritability. They can serve as an activator to reload the normal state of mind. On the other hand, continual disagreements can have devastating consequences, leading to depression, anxiety, and even violent behavior.


A young family is the most prone to conflicts since they do not have a lot of life experience compromising and making relationships work. According to OnlineDivorce.com, 46% of all divorces are filed by couples who have been married for 1 to 5 years. It’s during these first several years that a family is going through its formation period. Some families successfully overcome the initial difficult period, while others either break up or continue living in constant quarrels.


Unstable relationships between parents cause serious harm to children’s psychological health, which then adversely affects different aspects of their lives. The family can act as both a positive and a negative factor in the child’s upbringing. In an unstable environment, the child develops insecurity, low self-esteem, and problems communicating with peers.


Features of unstable family relationships


Family conflicts are a rather painful and acute issue of our time. Crises occur in any family, but their number and severity are different. The incentives are associated with the desire to satisfy specific needs, avoid negative impacts, and protect individual interests without considering the partner’s needs.


The main aspects of family conflicts include:

  • direct connection to the crisis periods of family development;

  • constant proximity conditioning;

  • the high degree of emotional involvement;

  • the presence of moral obligations to the spouse;

  • adverse effects on the health and mental state of the participants;

  • the constant tension between the family members.


Crises in the family have a sharply negative effect on the child. Other difficult life situations such as poverty, parental divorce, moving to another city, serious illness, or growing up in life-threatening conditions are constant sources of stressful childhood experiences.

Below you can find five main problem areas in a child’s life affected by family conflicts.


Emotional instability


Children are very susceptible to parental quarrels. The strength and depth of the reaction depend on the child’s age, experience gained so far in the family, and character, temperament, and sensitivity. The emotional, behavioral, and social development of children also suffers when parents ignore each other and don’t communicate for a long time.


Children experience a crisis differently than adults. They often become more withdrawn, taciturn, and even completely lose the ability to speak due to increased nervousness. In complicated circumstances, they can also experience the emotions of terror, fear, and suffering. The consequence of such an impact on the child’s psyche may be the inability to adapt to social norms and the emergence of antisocial behavior.

Health disorders


Any conflicts that arise in a family between spouses in front of a child create a traumatic experience, becoming a source of various neuroses and even mental illness. Studies based on long-term observations show that children have their heart rate increased during a home conflict situation. At the same time, their body produces a stress hormone called cortisol, which in large quantities suppresses the immune system and causes sleep disturbances and chronic fatigue.


Children of different ages may show impaired brain development, sleep disturbance, anxiety, depression, behavioral, and other serious problems. In comparison, children whose parents can agree with each other and resolve controversial issues have fewer or no such manifestations.

Formation of negative personality traits


Conflicts and constant quarrels in the family affect a child’s behavior in several different ways. Some children develop the desire to be inconspicuous, hide, and escape from reality. They are afraid to provoke disapproval by their behavior. It leads to even greater passivity in the child, making it difficult for them to build useful communication patterns.


Other children implement demonstrative behavior to attract their parents’ attention. It is a feature of the child’s personality associated with feelings of abandonment. Emotional behavior manifests in mood swings, hysterics, malicious actions, and aggression.


Low self-esteem


Parents often transfer their dissatisfaction with each other to the child. Negative feelings are often redirected to children in the form of intolerance, mistrust, and even physical punishment. A child growing up in such an atmosphere develops low self-esteem due to a constant lack of confidence. Children also tend to blame themselves for conflicts in the family. As a result, a sense of guilt, which is destructive for the child’s psyche, can become a psychological trauma source.

Problems with academic performance


Children raised in families with unstable relationships have a slow pace of mental and intellectual development, low emotional range, and imagination, which adversely affects school performance. Due to chronic psychological trauma, the child does not master the educational material well. Consequently, a low level of educational achievement leads to a loss of motivation. Instead of realizing the real reason for poor academic performance, parents repeatedly push the child, making them feel imperfect and worthless.


Conclusion


Unpredictability and chaos prevailing in the family cause the absence of a clear line of behavior for children. It is difficult for them to learn how to behave since their actions are evaluated, not objectively, but according to their parents’ current mood. Spouses with serious difficulties must learn to find compromises for the sake of their children because their future depends on it.


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