In this study, contact lenses were prepared through the polymerization of tris-(trimethyl-silyl-propyl-methacrylate) (TRIS), N,N-dimethylacrylamide (DMA), N-vinylpyrrolidone (NVP), and cross-linked with ethylene glycol dimethylacrylate (EGDMA). The equilibrium water content (EWC), oxygen permeability (Dk), light transmittance, and in vitro cytotoxicity of TRIS-DMA-NVP with various ratios were measured. The results showed that the EWC increased while the Dk decreased with the increase of NVP content. For the sample with 25 wt% NVP, the EWC attained 53% whereas the Dk decreased to 46 barrers. All these lenses exhibited light transmittance over than 95%. In addition, all these lenses exhibited no inhibition to the growth of L292 fibroblasts. Thus, this study showed that TRIS-DMA-NVP can be applicable for making contact lens.
Visually impaired people, in their daily lives, face struggles and spatial barriers because the built environment is often designed with an extreme focus on the visual element, causing what is called architectural visual bias or ocularcentrism. The aim of the study is to holistically understand the world of the visually impaired as an attempt to extract the qualities of space that accommodate their needs, and to show the importance of multi-sensory, holistic designs for the blind. Within the framework of existential phenomenology, common themes are reached through "intersubjectivity": experience descriptions by blind people and blind architects, observation of how blind children learn to perceive their surrounding environment, and a personal lived blind-folded experience are analyzed. The extracted themes show how visually impaired people filter out and prioritize tactile (active, passive and dynamic touch), acoustic and olfactory spatial qualities respectively, and how this happened during the personal lived blind folded experience. The themes clarify that haptic and aural inclusive designs are essential to create environments suitable for the visually impaired to empower them towards an independent, safe and efficient life.
Sorghum byproducts, namely bran, stalk, and panicle are examples of lignocellulosic biomass. These raw materials contain large amounts of polysaccharides, in particular hemicelluloses, celluloses, and lignins, which if efficiently extracted, can be utilised for the development of a range of added value products with potential applications in agriculture and food packaging sectors. The aim of this study was to characterise fractions extracted from sorghum bran and stalk with regards to their physicochemical properties that could determine their applicability as food-packaging materials. A sequential alkaline extraction was applied for the isolation of cellulosic, hemicellulosic and lignin fractions from sorghum stalk and bran. Lignin content, phenolic content and antioxidant capacity were also investigated in the case of the lignin fraction. Thermal analysis using differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) revealed that the glass transition temperature (Tg) of cellulose fraction of the stalk was ~78.33 oC at amorphous state (~65%) and water content of ~5%. In terms of hemicellulose, the Tg value of stalk was slightly lower compared to bran at amorphous state (~54%) and had less water content (~2%). It is evident that hemicelluloses generally showed a lower thermal stability compared to cellulose, probably due to their lack of crystallinity. Additionally, bran had higher arabinose-to-xylose ratio (0.82) than the stalk, a fact that indicated its low crystallinity. Furthermore, lignin fraction had Tg value of ~93 oC at amorphous state (~11%). Stalk-derived lignin fraction contained more phenolic compounds (mainly consisting of p-coumaric and ferulic acid) and had higher lignin content and antioxidant capacity compared to bran-derived lignin fraction.
84 deaf students (from primary school to college) and their families participated in this inclusion project in cooperation with numerous institutions in northern Italy (Brescia-Lombardy). Participants were either congenitally deaf or their deafness was related to other pathologies. This research promoted the integration of deaf students as they pass from primary school to high school to college. Learning methods and processes were studied that focused on encouraging individual autonomy and socialization. The research team and its collaborators included school teachers, speech therapists, psychologists and home tutors, as well as teaching assistants, child neuropsychiatrists and other external authorities involved with deaf persons social inclusion programs. Deaf children and their families were supported, in terms of inclusion, and were made aware of the research team that focused on the Bisogni Educativi Speciali (BES or Special Educational Needs) (L.170/2010 - DM 5669/2011). This project included a diagnostic and evaluative phase as well as an operational one. Results demonstrated that deaf children were highly satisfied and confident; academic performance improved and collaboration in school increased. Deaf children felt that they had access to high school and college. Empowerment for the families of deaf children in terms of networking among local services that deal with the deaf also improved while family satisfaction also improved. We found that teachers and those who gave support to deaf children increased their professional skills. Achieving autonomy, instrumental, communicative and relational abilities were also found to be crucial. Project success was determined by temporal continuity, clear theoretical methodology, strong alliance for the project direction and a resilient team response.
The Malaysian government had consistently revived its campaign for “Buy Malaysian Goods” from time to time. The purpose of the campaign is to remind consumers to be ethnocentric and patriotic when purchasing product and services. This is necessary to ensure high demand for local products and services compared to foreign products. However, the decline of domestic investment in 2012 has triggered concern for the Malaysian economy. Hence, this study attempts to determine the drivers of actual purchasing behavior, intention to purchase domestic products and ethnocentrism. The study employs the cross-sectional primary data, self-administered on household, selected using stratified random sampling in four Malaysian regions. A nine factor driver of actual domestic purchasing behavior (culture openness, conservatism, collectivism, patriotism, control belief, interest in foreign travel, attitude, ethnocentrism and intention) were measured utilizing 60 items, using 7-point Likertscale. From 1000 questionnaires distributed, a sample of 486 were returned representing 48.6 percent response rate. From the fit generated structural model (SEM analysis), it was found that the drivers of actual purchase behavior are collectivism, cultural openness and patriotism; the drivers of intention to purchase domestic product are attitude, control belief, collectivism and conservatism; and drivers of ethnocentrism are cultural openness, control belief, foreign travel and patriotism. It also shows that Malaysian consumers scored high in ethnocentrism and patriotism. The findings are discussed in the perspective of its implication to Malaysian National Agenda.
This paper focuses on the contemporary phenomenon of Anti-Gypsyism which diffused widely throughout social representations of the so called “Gypsies”. In Europe and especially in Italy, the media tends to reproduce racist stereotypes and prejudices through a xenophobic depiction of this ethnic group, often offering an ethnocentric point of view. From an anthropological perspective, Roma people are a minority group facing diasporic phenomena across Europe, produced by the host societies.
An experiment was conducted to determine the effect of pollination on seed quality of rapeseed in Chitwan, Nepal during 2012-2013. The experiment was designed in Randomized Complete Block with four replications and five treatments. The rapeseed plots were caged with mosquito nets at 10% flowering except natural pollination. Two-framed colonies of Apis mellifera L. and Apis cerana F. were introduced separately for pollination, and control plot caged without pollinators. The highest germination percent was observed on Apis cerana F. pollinated plot seeds (90.50% germination) followed by Apis mellifera L. pollinated plots (87.25 %) and lowest on control plots (42.00% germination) seeds. Similarly, seed test weight of Apis cerana F. pollinated plots (3.22 gm/ 1000 seed) and Apis mellifera L. pollinated plots (2.93 gm/1000 seed) were and lowest on control plots (2.26 gm/ 1000 seed) recorded. Likewise, oil content was recorded highest on pollinated by Apis cerana F. (36.1%) followed by pollinated by Apis mellifera L. (35.4%) and lowest on control plots (32.8%). This study clearly indicated pollination increases the seed quality of rapeseed and therefore, management of honeybee is necessary for producing higher quality of rapeseed under Chitwan condition.
It is well known, that any interpolating polynomial p (x, y) on the vector space Pn,m of two-variable polynomials with degree less than n in terms of x and less than m in terms of y, has various representations that depends on the basis of Pn,m that we select i.e. monomial, Newton and Lagrange basis e.t.c.. The aim of this short note is twofold : a) to present transformations between the coordinates of the polynomial p (x, y) in the aforementioned basis and b) to present transformations between these bases.
The differences on proximate composition, sensorial analysis (for raw and cooked samples) and flesh productivity of the samples of Parapenaus longirostris that were caught in the North Aegean Sea and Marmara Sea were investigated. Moisture, protein, lipid, ash, carbohydrate, energy content of the North Aegean Sea shrimp were found 74.92 ± 0.1, 20.32 ± 0.16, 2.55 ± 0.1, 2.13 ± 0.08, 0.08%, 110.1 kcal/100 g, respectively. On the other hand, the Marmara Sea shrimp was found 76.9 ± 0.02, 19.06 ± 0.03, 2.22 ± 0.08, 1.51 ± 0.04, 0.33, 102.77 kcal/100g, respectively. Protein, lipid, ash and energy values of the Northern Aegean Sea shrimp were higher than the Marmara Sea shrimp. On the other hand, moisture, carbohydrate values of the Northern Aegean Sea shrimp were lower than the Marmara samples. Sensorial analyses were carried on for raw and cooked samples. Among all properties for raw samples, flesh color, shrimp connective tissue, shrimp body parameters were different from each other according to the result of the panel. According to the result of the cooked shrimp samples among all properties, cooked odour, flavor and texture were different from each other as well. Especially, flavor and textural properties of cooked shrimps of the Northern Aegean Sea were higher than the Marmara Sea shrimp. The flesh yield of the Northern Aegean Sea shrimp was found 46.42%, while Marmara Sea shrimp was found 47.74%.
Spatial dimension in development planning is becoming more topical in 21st century as a result of changes in population structure. Sustainable spatial development focuses on identifying and using territorial advantages to foster the harmonized development of the entire country, reducing negative effects of population concentration, increasing availability and mobility. EU and national development planning documents state polycentrism as main tool for balance spatial development, including investment concentration in growth centres. If mutual cooperation of growth centres as well as urban–rural cooperation is not fostered, then territorial differences can deepen and create unbalanced development.
The aim of research: to evaluate the urban–rural interaction, elaborating spatial development scenarios in framework of Latvian regional policy. To perform the research monographic, comparison, abstract–logical method, synthesis and analysis will be used when studying the theoretical aspects of research aiming at collecting the ideas of scientists from different countries, concepts, regulations as well as to create meaningful scientific discussion. Hierarchy analysis process (AHP) will be used to state further scenarios of spatial development in Latvia.
Experts from various institutions recognized urban – rural interaction and co-operation as an essential tool for the development. The most important factors for balanced spatial development in Latvia are availability of public transportation and improvement of service availability. Evaluating the three alternative scenarios, it was concluded that the urban – rural partnership will ensure a balanced development in Latvian regions.
This article deals with consumer ethnocentrism in the Moravian-Silesian region in the Czech Republic. Research was focused on finding out how strong consumer ethnocentrism is in the region and how it depends on demographic factors. The used method is CETSCALE and the data were obtained by questionnaire survey, analyzed by IBM SPSS. From the thousands of respondents the representative sample of 414 for MS region was created based on demographic factors of gender, age, education and income. The research analysis disclosed that consumer ethnocentrism in MS region depends on education and income and is independent on gender and age.
The health and environmental risk of eating mushrooms grown in Abakaliki were evaluated in terms of heavy metals accumulation. Mushroom samples were collected from four different farms located at Izzi, Amajim, Amana and Amudo and analyzed for (iron, lead, manganese and cadmium) using Bulk Scientific Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer 205. Results indicates mean range of concentrations of the trace metals in the mushrooms were Fe (0.22-152. 03), Mn (0.74-9.76), Pb (0.01.0.80), Cd (0.61-0.82) mg/L respectively. Accumulation of Cd on the four locations under investigation was higher than the UK Government Food Science Surveillance and World Health Organization maximum recommended levels in mushroom for human consumption. The Fe and Mn contaminants of Amudo were significant and show the impact of anthropogenic/atmospheric pollution. The potential sources of the heavy metals in the mushrooms were from urban waste, dust from mining and quarrying activities, natural geochemistry of the area, and use of inorganic fertilizers
There is long history of konjac tubers being used as a cure for certain diseases in China and Japan. Konjac flour is prepared from konjac tubers and it contains high concentration of glucomannan. Konjac Glucomannan (KGM) is dietary fiber and the role of which has been demonstrated in weight reduction, lowering blood cholesterol and sugar level, promoting intestinal activity etc. Konjac glucomanan has a property of swelling by absorbing water, more than a hundred times its own weight. Therefore it helps increasing weight of feces, water content of feces, and promotes satiety feeling. Mode of actions of dietary fibre as laxatives agents includes holding water inside the bowel lumen, inhibition of water absorption in the colon and stimulating colonic motility. Number of fecal pellets did not effected in rats were fed on 300 and 600 mg/kg of konjac flour, as well as constipated control and Dulcolax treatment. Water content, weight of fecal pellets and gastrointestinal transit ratio were higher in rats treated with 600 mg/kg than 300 mg/kg of konjac flour. Rats were administered with Dulcolax showed the highest gastrointestinal transit ratio, followed by 600 mg/kg konjac flour. The lowest feed consumption was noted in 600 mg/kg konjac flour diet group.
There have been few studies of cross-border shopping. However, many have focused on macroeconomic effects rather than on discovering the motivation and behaviour of cross-border shoppers who purchase abroad. Hatyai, Thailand is located about 30 km from the Malaysian border. The statistics reports that each year more than 400,000 Malaysian visitors visited Hatyai. The aims of this study are fourfold: (1) to investigate factors motivating cross-border shoppers to shop in Hatyai, Thailand; (2) to examine the relationship between ethnicity and shopper ethnocentrism; (3) to discover the impact of shopper ethnocentrism on foreign product judgment; and (4) to explore the impact of shopper ethnocentrism on the willingness to buy foreign products. The results reveal that the three most popular consumption items were food and beverages, clothing, and grocery products. Factor analysis shows that the three key reasons for choosing Hatyai as the cross-border shopping destination included product and store, close distance, and low exchange rate. Moreover, there were significant differences in ethnocentrism by three ethnic groups. Shopper ethnocentrism had a significant negative correlation with foreign product judgment, while shopper ethnocentrism was not significantly correlated with willingness to buy foreign products.
The inherent iterative nature of product design and development poses significant challenge to reduce the product design and development time (PD). In order to shorten the time to market, organizations have adopted concurrent development where multiple specialized tasks and design activities are carried out in parallel. Iterative nature of work coupled with the overlap of activities can result in unpredictable time to completion and significant rework. Many of the products have missed the time to market window due to unanticipated or rather unplanned iteration and rework. The iterative and often overlapped processes introduce greater amounts of ambiguity in design and development, where the traditional methods and tools of project management provide less value. In this context, identifying critical metrics to understand the iteration probability is an open research area where significant contribution can be made given that iteration has been the key driver of cost and schedule risk in PD projects. Two important questions that the proposed study attempts to address are: Can we predict and identify the number of iterations in a product development flow? Can we provide managerial insights for a better control over iteration? The proposal introduces the concept of decision points and using this concept intends to develop metrics that can provide managerial insights into iteration predictability. By characterizing the product development flow as a network of decision points, the proposed research intends to delve further into iteration probability and attempts to provide more clarity.
The Tropical Data Hub (TDH) is a virtual research environment that provides researchers with an e-research infrastructure to congregate significant tropical data sets for data reuse, integration, searching, and correlation. However, researchers often require data and metadata synthesis across disciplines for cross-domain analyses and knowledge discovery. A triplestore offers a semantic layer to achieve a more intelligent method of search to support the synthesis requirements by automating latent linkages in the data and metadata. Presently, the benchmarks to aid the decision of which triplestore is best suited for use in an application environment like the TDH are limited to performance. This paper describes a new evaluation tool developed to analyze both features and performance. The tool comprises a weighted decision matrix to evaluate the interoperability, functionality, performance, and support availability of a range of integrated and native triplestores to rank them according to requirements of the TDH.
The Tropical Data Hub (TDH) is a virtual research environment that provides researchers with an e-research infrastructure to congregate significant tropical data sets for data reuse, integration, searching, and correlation. However, researchers often require data and metadata synthesis across disciplines for crossdomain analyses and knowledge discovery. A triplestore offers a semantic layer to achieve a more intelligent method of search to support the synthesis requirements by automating latent linkages in the data and metadata. Presently, the benchmarks to aid the decision of which triplestore is best suited for use in an application environment like the TDH are limited to performance. This paper describes a new evaluation tool developed to analyze both features and performance. The tool comprises a weighted decision matrix to evaluate the interoperability, functionality, performance, and support availability of a range of integrated and native triplestores to rank them according to requirements of the TDH.
The modern world is experiencing fundamental and dynamic changes. The transformation of international relations; the end of confrontation and successive overcoming of the Cold War consequences have expanded possible international cooperation. The global nuclear conflict threat has been minimized, while a tendency to establish a unipolar world structure with the U.S. economic and power domination is growing. The current world system of international relations, apparently is secular. However, the religious beliefs of one or another nations play a certain (sometimes a key) role, both in the domestic affairs of the individual countries and in the development of bilateral ties. Political situation in Central Asia has been characterized by new factors such as international terrorism; religious extremism and radicalism; narcotrafficking and illicit arms trade of a global character immediately threaten to peace and political stability in Central Asia. The role and influence of Islamic fundamentalism is increasing; political ethnocentrism and the associated aggravation of inter-ethnic relations, the ambiguity of national interests and objectives of major geo-political groups in the Central Asian region regarding the division the political influence, emerge. This article approaches the following issues: the role of Islam in Central Asia; destabilizing factors in Central Asia; Islamic movements in Central Asia, Western Europe and the United States; the United States, Western Europe and Central Asia: religion, politics, ideology, and the US-Central Asia antiterrorism and religious extremism cooperation.
To decompose organochlorides by bioremediation, co-culture biohydrogen producer and dehalogenation microorganisms is a useful method. In this study, we combined these two characteristics from a biohydrogen producer, Rhodopseudomonas palustris, and a dehalogenation microorganism, Pseudomonas putida, to enchance halorespiration in R. palustris. The genes encoding cytochrome P450cam system (camC, camA, and camB) from P. putida were expressed in R. palustris with designated expression plasmid. All tested strains were cultured to log phase then presented pentachloroethane (PCA) in media. The vector control strain could degrade PCA about 78% after 16 hours, however, the cytochrome P450cam system expressed strain, CGA-camCAB, could completely degrade PCA in 12 hours. While taking chlorinated aromatic, 3-chlorobenzoate, as sole carbon source or present benzoate as co-substrate, CGA-camCAB presented faster growth rate than vector control strain.