WorldWideScience

Sample records for technology-aided approaches improved

  1. Graphic Comprehension and Interpretation Skills of Preservice Teachers with Different Learning Approaches in a Technology-Aided Learning Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Çelik, Harun; Pektas, Hüseyin Miraç

    2017-01-01

    A one-group quasi-experimental design and survey methodology were used to investigate the effect of virtual laboratory practices on preservice teachers' (N = 29) graphic comprehension and interpretation skills with different learning approaches. Pretest and posttest data were collected with the Test of Understanding Kinematic Graphs. The Learning…

  2. Graphic Comprehension and Interpretation Skills of Preservice Teachers with Different Learning Approaches in a Technology-Aided Learning Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Çelik, Harun; Pektas, Hüseyin Miraç

    2017-01-01

    A one-group quasi-experimental design and survey methodology were used to investigate the effect of virtual laboratory practices on preservice teachers' (N = 29) graphic comprehension and interpretation skills with different learning approaches. Pretest and posttest data were collected with the Test of Understanding Kinematic Graphs. The Learning…

  3. The Conceptualization of the Mathematical Modelling Process in Technology-Aided Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hidiroglu, Çaglar Naci; Güzel, Esra Bukova

    2017-01-01

    The aim of the study is to conceptualize the technology-aided mathematical modelling process in the frame of cognitive modelling perspective. The grounded theory approach was adopted in the study. The research was conducted with seven groups consisting of nineteen prospective mathematics teachers. The data were collected from the video records of…

  4. How Digital Health Technology Aids Physicians

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nik Tehrani

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available There is so much health and medical information available today that physicians cannot be expected to know it all. Thus, advances in technology have become a necessity for doctors to track patient information and care, and add to patient databases for reference and to conduct research. It is important to understand the new language of digital health, such as Personal Health Record (PHR, Electronic Medical Record (EMR and Electronic Health Record (EHR, all of which sound similar, but are not interchangeable. The ideal comprehensive IT system would empower patients, advance healthcare delivery and transform patient data into life-saving research (Kaiser, 2015. OmniFluent Health is language translation software that will allow for better patient/practitioner communication and avoid errors. Digital technology employs the use of big data that is shared, accessed, compiled and applied using analytics. However, information transfer, especially as mandated by current ethics of use of technology, has resulted into breach of patient privacy. Improved digital technology is providing the health care field with upgrades that are necessary, electronic files and health records, from mobile apps, and remote monitoring devices.

  5. 25 CFR 502.7 - Electronic, computer or other technologic aid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 2 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Electronic, computer or other technologic aid. 502.7... DEFINITIONS OF THIS CHAPTER § 502.7 Electronic, computer or other technologic aid. (a) Electronic, computer or other technologic aid means any machine or device that: (1) Assists a player or the playing of a...

  6. Improving immunization approaches to cholera.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saha, Amit; Rosewell, Alexander; Hayen, Andrew; MacIntyre, C Raina; Qadri, Firdausi

    2017-03-01

    Cholera's impact is greatest in resource-limited countries. In the last decade several large epidemics have led to a global push to improve and implement the tools for cholera prevention and control. Areas covered: PubMed, Google Scholar and the WHO website were searched to review the literature and summarize the current status of cholera vaccines to make recommendations on improving immunization approaches to cholera. Oral cholera vaccines (OCVs) have demonstrated their effectiveness in endemic, outbreak response and emergency settings, highlighting their potential for wider adoption. While two doses of the currently available OCVs are recommended by manufacturers, a single dose would be easier to implement. Encouragingly, recent studies have shown that cold chain requirements may no longer be essential. The establishment of the global OCV stockpile in 2013 has been a major advance in cholera preparedness. New killed and live-attenuated vaccines are being actively explored as candidate vaccines for endemic settings and/or as a traveller's vaccine. The recent advances in cholera vaccination approaches should be considered in the global cholera control strategy. Expert commentary: The development of affordable cholera vaccines is a major success to improve cholera control. New vaccines and country specific interventions will further reduce the burden of this disease globally.

  7. Interpreting the CMMI a process improvement approach

    CERN Document Server

    Kulpa, Margaret K

    2008-01-01

    Written by experienced process improvement professionals who have developed and implemented computer based systems in organizations around the world, Interpreting the CMMI®: A Process Improvement Approach, Second Edition provides you with specific techniques for performing process improvement. Employing everyday language and supported by real world examples, the authors describe the fundamental concepts of the CMMI model, covering goals, practices, architecture, and definitions, and provide a structured approach for implementing the concepts of the CMMI into any organization. They discuss gett

  8. Cultivating collaborative improvement: an action learning approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Middel, H.G.A.; McNichols, Timothy

    2006-01-01

    The process of implementing collaborative initiatives across disparate members of supply networks is fraught with difficulties. One approach designed to tackle the difficulties of organisational change and interorganisational improvement in practice is 'action learning'. This paper examines the

  9. Improved System Identification Approach Using Wavelet Networks

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    石宏理; 蔡远利; 邱祖廉

    2005-01-01

    A new approach is proposed to improve the general identification algorithm of multidimensional systems using wavelet networks. The general algorithm involves mapping vector input into its norm to avoid problem of dimensionality in construction multidimensional wavelet basis functions. Thus, the basis functions are spherically symmetric without direction selectivity. In order to restore the direction selectivity, the improved approach weights the input variables before mapping it into a scalar form. The weights can be obtained using universal optimization algorithms. Generally, only local optimal weights are obtained. Even so, performance of identification can be improved.

  10. Interdisciplinary approach for improved esthetic results

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G Sriram

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available This clinical report describes an interdisciplinary (orthodontic, prosthodontics and operative dentist approach for the coordinated treatment of an adult patient diagnosed with severely mutilated dentition secondary to caries lesion warranting restorative procedures that was facilitated with orthodontic treatment. The patient′s specific esthetic expectation for the anterior teeth and improved smile were successfully met through planned treatment, including orthodontic tooth movement, restoration and porcelain conversion crowns. Such coordinated interdisciplinary evaluations and treatment are necessary for improved esthetics.

  11. Improving security of a chaotic encryption approach

    OpenAIRE

    Li, SJ; Mou, XQ; Cai, YL

    2001-01-01

    E. Alvarez et al. presented a new chaotic encryption approach recently. But soon G. Alvarez et al. broke it with four cryptanalytic methods and found some other weaknesses. In this Letter we point out why the original scheme is so vulnerable to the proposed four attacks. The chief reasons are two essential defects existing in the original scheme. Based on such a fact, we present an improved encryption scheme to obtain higher security. The cryptographic properties of the improved scheme are st...

  12. Improved Statistical Speech Segmentation Using Connectionist Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. S. Salam

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement: Speech segmentation is an important part for speech recognition, synthesizing and coding. Statistical based approach detects segmentation points via computing spectral distortion of the signal without prior knowledge of the acoustic information proved to be able to give good match, less omission but lot of insertion. These insertion points dropped segmentation accuracy. Approach: This study proposed a fusion method between statistical and connectionist approaches namely the divergence algorithm and Multi Layer Perceptron (MLP with adaptive learning for segmentation of Malay connected digit with the aim to improve statistical approach via detection of insertion points. The neural network was optimized via trial and error in finding suitable parameters and speech time normalization methods. The best neural network classifier was then fusion with divergence algorithm to make segmentation. Results: The results of the experiments showed that the best neural network classifier used learning rate of value 1.0 and momentum rate of value 0.9 with data normalization based on zero-padded. The segmentation using fusion of statistical and connectionist was able to reduce insertion points up to 10.4% while maintaining match points above 99% and omission point below 0.7% within time tolerance of 0.09 second. Conclusion: The result of segmentation using the proposed fusion method indicated potential use of connectionist approach in improving continuous segmentation by statistical approach.

  13. Improved Round Robin Policya Mathematical Approach

    OpenAIRE

    Prof . D. Pandey; Vandana

    2010-01-01

    This work attempts to mathematically formulize the computation of waiting time of any process in a static n-process, CPU-bound round robin scheme. That in effect, can calculate other performance measures also. An improvement in the existing round robin algorithm has also been worked out that provides priority to processes nearing completion. The suggested approach uses two ready queues, wherein a process is returned to the second ready queue after the completion of its penultimate round. This...

  14. Improving broiler lifestyle: a CFD approach

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Humbert, U

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available on Computational and Applied Mechanics Somerset West 14 – 16 January 2014 1 Improving broiler lifestyle: a CFD approach U Humbert 1, 2 , GJC Wessels 2 , JE Smit 2* , O Ubbink 2 1 Institut Polytechnique de Bordeaux for ENSEIRB-MATMECA, France; uhumbert... this is a complex model to replicate and solve, computational fluid dynamics can assist in broiler house design. Keywords: CFD modelling, broiler houses, environmental control, ventilation, food security INTRODUCTION In South Africa agriculture...

  15. A multidisciplinary approach for improving outcomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sierchio, Grace P

    2003-01-01

    The healthcare environment has been impacted tremendously by higher patient acuity, cost-cutting measures, an increase in litigation, and increased expectations by an educated generation of healthcare consumers. This has led to the need to continually measure, assess, and improve quality. These activities must consider not only patient clinical outcomes, but also customer service ratings and financial outcomes. Quality improvement requires a collaborative approach to succeed, and the need to build a cohesive and effective multidisciplinary team is critical for positive outcomes. Strategies to build a culture of teamwork include incorporating total quality management principles into every level of the organization, seeking participation from every discipline and level of the organization, and recognizing employees for their efforts. Infusion nurses have an excellent opportunity to contribute their expertise to any multidisciplinary team that impacts the outcomes of infusion patients. In addition, team-building and quality improvement may prove to be excellent career moves for infusion nurses looking to further specialize their practice.

  16. An Integrated Approach to Crop Genetic Improvement

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Martin A. J. Parry; Malcolm J. Hawkesford

    2012-01-01

    The balance between the supply and demand of the major food crops is fragile,fueling concerns for long-term global food security.The rising population,increasing wealth and a proliferation of nonfood uses (e.g.bioenergy) has led to growing demands on agriculture,while increased production is limited by greater urbanization,and the degradation of land.Furthermore,global climate change with increasing temperatures and lower,more erratic rainfall is projected to decrease agricultural yields.There is a predicted need to increase food production by at least 70% by 2050 and therefore an urgent need to develop novel and integrated approaches,incorporating high-throughput phenotyping that will both increase production per unit area and simultaneously improve the resource use efficiency of crops.Yield potential,yield stability,nutrient and water use are all complex multigenic traits and while there is genetic variability,their complexity makes such traits difficult to breed for directly.Nevertheless molecular plant breeding has the potential to deliver substantial improvements,once the component traits and the genes underlying these traits have been identified.In addition,interactions between the individual traits must also be taken into account,a demand that is difficult to fulfill with traditional screening approaches.Identified traits will be incorporated into new cultivars using conventional or biotechnological tools.In order to better understand the relationship between genotype,component traits,and environment over time,a multidisciplinary approach must be adopted to both understand the underlying processes and identify candidate genes,QTLs and traits that can be used to develop improved crops.

  17. Improved Round Robin Policya Mathematical Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prof . D. Pandey

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available This work attempts to mathematically formulize the computation of waiting time of any process in a static n-process, CPU-bound round robin scheme. That in effect, can calculate other performance measures also. An improvement in the existing round robin algorithm has also been worked out that provides priority to processes nearing completion. The suggested approach uses two ready queues, wherein a process is returned to the second ready queue after the completion of its penultimate round. This policy reduces the average waiting timeand increases the throughput, in comparison to the conventional round robin scheme, while maintaining the same level of CPU utilization and no substantial increase in the overheads. The mathematical formulation of this policy is transparent enough; it provides, for each process, the actual order of shifting to the second queue and also the order of termination.

  18. Approach for Improving the Integrated Sensor Orientation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitishita, E.; Ercolin Filho, L.; Graça, N.; Centeno, J.

    2016-06-01

    The direct determination of exterior orientation parameters (EOP) of aerial images via integration of the Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) and GPS is often used in photogrammetric mapping nowadays. The accuracies of the EOP depend on the accurate parameters related to sensors mounting when the job is performed (offsets of the IMU relative to the projection centre and the angles of boresigth misalignment between the IMU and the photogrammetric coordinate system). In principle, when the EOP values do not achieve the required accuracies for the photogrammetric application, the approach, known as Integrated Sensor Orientation (ISO), is used to refine the direct EOP. ISO approach requires accurate Interior Orientation Parameters (IOP) and standard deviation of the EOP under flight condition. This paper investigates the feasibility of use the in situ camera calibration to obtain these requirements. The camera calibration uses a small sub block of images, extracted from the entire block. A digital Vexcel UltraCam XP camera connected to APPLANIX POS AVTM system was used to get two small blocks of images that were use in this study. The blocks have different flight heights and opposite flight directions. The proposed methodology improved significantly the vertical and horizontal accuracies of the 3D point intersection. Using a minimum set of control points, the horizontal and vertical accuracies achieved nearly one image pixel of resolution on the ground (GSD). The experimental results are shown and discussed.

  19. APPROACH FOR IMPROVING THE INTEGRATED SENSOR ORIENTATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Mitishita

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The direct determination of exterior orientation parameters (EOP of aerial images via integration of the Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU and GPS is often used in photogrammetric mapping nowadays. The accuracies of the EOP depend on the accurate parameters related to sensors mounting when the job is performed (offsets of the IMU relative to the projection centre and the angles of boresigth misalignment between the IMU and the photogrammetric coordinate system. In principle, when the EOP values do not achieve the required accuracies for the photogrammetric application, the approach, known as Integrated Sensor Orientation (ISO, is used to refine the direct EOP. ISO approach requires accurate Interior Orientation Parameters (IOP and standard deviation of the EOP under flight condition. This paper investigates the feasibility of use the in situ camera calibration to obtain these requirements. The camera calibration uses a small sub block of images, extracted from the entire block. A digital Vexcel UltraCam XP camera connected to APPLANIX POS AVTM system was used to get two small blocks of images that were use in this study. The blocks have different flight heights and opposite flight directions. The proposed methodology improved significantly the vertical and horizontal accuracies of the 3D point intersection. Using a minimum set of control points, the horizontal and vertical accuracies achieved nearly one image pixel of resolution on the ground (GSD. The experimental results are shown and discussed.

  20. Persons with moderate Alzheimer's disease use simple technology aids to manage daily activities and leisure occupation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lancioni, Giulio E; Singh, Nirbhay N; O'Reilly, Mark F; Sigafoos, Jeff; Renna, Caterina; Pinto, Katia; De Vanna, Floriana; Caffò, Alessandro O; Stasolla, Fabrizio

    2014-09-01

    Two studies assessed technology-aided programs to support performance of daily activities and selection/activation of music items with patients with moderate Alzheimer's disease. In Study I, four patients were presented with activity-related pictorial instructions via a computer fitted with inexpensive, commercial software. In Study II, four patients were (a) presented with different music options and (b) allowed to select and activate the preferred option via a microswitch response. Study I showed that each patient learned to perform the two activities available with percentages of correct responses exceeding 85 by the end of the intervention. Study II showed that all patients learned to choose and activate music options. Psychology students, employed in a social validation check, scored the patients' behavior within the program better than their behavior in a control situation. The relevance and usability of simplified pictorial-instruction programs and music choice programs for patients with moderate Alzheimer's disease were discussed.

  1. An Approach for Improved Planning in Colleges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroeder, Roger G.

    Planning and management systems for colleges should be tailor-made to fit each particular college. The approach suggested here is flexible so that it can be adapted to individual circumstances in a variety of colleges. What is being suggested is an approach to planning rather than a technique. The approach results in two types of output documents:…

  2. Technology-Aided Pictorial Cues to Support the Performance of Daily Activities by Persons with Moderate Alzheimer's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lancioni, Giulio E.; Perilli, Viviana; Singh, Nirbhay N.; O'Reilly, Mark F.; Sigafoos, Jeff; Cassano, Germana; Pinto, Katia; Minervini, Mauro G.; Oliva, Doretta

    2012-01-01

    We developed a technology-aided intervention strategy relying on pictorial cues alone or in combination with verbal instructions and assessed these two versions of the strategy with three persons with moderate Alzheimer's disease. In Section I of the study, the strategy version with pictorial cues plus verbal instructions was compared with an…

  3. Technology-Aided Programs for Assisting Communication and Leisure Engagement of Persons with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis: Two Single-Case Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lancioni, Giulio E.; Singh, Nirbhay N.; O'Reilly, Mark F.; Sigafoos, Jeff; Ferlisi, Gabriele; Ferrarese, Giacomina; Zullo, Valeria; Addante, Luigi M.; Spica, Antonella; Oliva, Doretta

    2012-01-01

    Technology-aided programs for assisting communication and leisure engagement were assessed in single-case studies involving two men with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Study I involved a 51-year-old man with a virtually total loss of his motor repertoire and assessed a technology-aided program aimed at enabling him to (a) write and send out…

  4. Technology-Aided Programs for Assisting Communication and Leisure Engagement of Persons with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis: Two Single-Case Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lancioni, Giulio E.; Singh, Nirbhay N.; O'Reilly, Mark F.; Sigafoos, Jeff; Ferlisi, Gabriele; Ferrarese, Giacomina; Zullo, Valeria; Addante, Luigi M.; Spica, Antonella; Oliva, Doretta

    2012-01-01

    Technology-aided programs for assisting communication and leisure engagement were assessed in single-case studies involving two men with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Study I involved a 51-year-old man with a virtually total loss of his motor repertoire and assessed a technology-aided program aimed at enabling him to (a) write and send out…

  5. A Measurement Approach for Process Improvement | Woherem ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    LBS Management Review ... Many organisations today have embarked on a process improvement or re-engineering project. ... are used in the measurement of software processes, REFINE is used for the measurement of business processes.

  6. An improved Hough transform-based fingerprint alignment approach

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Mlambo, CS

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available An improved Hough Transform based fingerprint alignment approach is presented, which improves computing time and memory usage with accurate alignment parameter (rotation and translation) results. This is achieved by studying the strengths...

  7. Realistic biological approaches for improving thermoradiotherapy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Horsman, Michael R

    2016-01-01

    There is now definitive clinical evidence that hyperthermia can successfully improve the response of certain human tumour types to radiation therapy, but, there is still the need for improvement. From a biological standpoint this can be achieved by either targeting the cellular or vascular...... or radiation in preclinical models and clear benefits in tumour response observed. But few of these methods have actually been combined with thermoradiotherapy. Furthermore, very few combinations have been tested in relevant normal tissue studies, despite the fact that it is the normal tissue response...

  8. Informatics Approach to Improving Surgical Skills Training

    Science.gov (United States)

    Islam, Gazi

    2013-01-01

    Surgery as a profession requires significant training to improve both clinical decision making and psychomotor proficiency. In the medical knowledge domain, tools have been developed, validated, and accepted for evaluation of surgeons' competencies. However, assessment of the psychomotor skills still relies on the Halstedian model of…

  9. A Team Approach to Improving Tissue Management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sions, Jacqueline A; Cheuvront, Kimberly A; Grove, Georgiana L; Beach, Myra J; Bowers, Jay W; Cendaña, Cinthia R; Hixson, Jesse R; Wilson, Mary C

    2016-04-01

    Tissue implant management can be labor intensive because of multiple storage locations and cumbersome tracking systems. The purpose of this quality improvement (QI) project was to enhance patient safety and nursing satisfaction by upgrading our tissue-management facility and processes. We created a centralized storage room for tissue implants and staffed this room during all shifts. Tissue management was executed using tracking software and transportation devices that supported tissue receipt, storage, disposition, documentation, and reporting. Our project resulted in our full compliance with tissue implant requirements from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and The Joint Commission. We also reduced our documentation error rate from 3% to less than 1%, and decreased the tissue-expiration rate by 1.1%. Tissues are now delivered to ORs, which allows RNs to focus on patient care rather than retrieval of implants. Monitoring of the tissue inventory has improved, resulting in the reduction of tissue wastage.

  10. Improving English Pronunciation: An Automated Instructional Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sugata Mitra

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes an experiment in which groups of children attempted to improve their English pronunciation using an English-language learning software, some English films, and a speech-to-text software engine. The experiment was designed to examine two hypotheses. The first is that speech-to-text software, trained in an appropriate voice, can act as an evaluator of accent and clarity of speech as well as help learners acquire a standard way of speaking. The second is that groups of children can operate a computer and improve their pronunciation and clarity of speech, on their own, with no intervention from teachers. The results of the experiment are positive and point to a possible new pedagogy.

  11. Nursing process approach improves receivables management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dias, K; Stockamp, D

    1992-09-01

    The "nursing process" is a systematic decision-making approach to problem solving based on open-system theory. This theory assumes that there is an on-going interchange between all system components. Components cannot be viewed in isolation, because decisions regarding one component will affect other components. Receivables management is similar to the nursing process, in that it involves constant diagnosis, assessment, and intervention in the work in process during all phases of the receivables cycle. In experiments that applied the nursing process concept to the management of accounts receivable in several hospitals, gross days in accounts receivable were reduced and cash flow was increased.

  12. An improved TF-IDF approach for text classification

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Yun-tao; GONG Ling; WANG Yong-cheng

    2005-01-01

    This paper presents a new improved term frequency/inverse document frequency (TF-IDF) approach which uses confidence, support and characteristic words to enhance the recall and precision of text classification. Synonyms defined by a lexicon are processed in the improved TF-IDF approach. We detailedly discuss and analyze the relationship among confidence,recall and precision. The experiments based on science and technology gave promising results that the new TF-IDF approach improves the precision and recall of text classification compared with the conventional TF-IDF approach.

  13. Nanotechnology approaches to improve dental implants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomisa, Antoni P; Launey, Maximilien E; Lee, Janice S; Mankani, Mahesh H; Wegst, Ulrike G K; Saiz, Eduardo

    2011-01-01

    The requirements imposed by the enormous scale and overall complexity of designing new implants or complete organ regeneration are well beyond the reach of present technology in many dimensions, including nanoscale, as researchers do not yet have the basic knowledge required to achieve these goals. The need for a synthetic implant to address multiple physical and biologic factors imposes tremendous constraints on the choice of suitable materials. There is a strong belief that nanoscale materials will produce a new generation of implant materials with high efficiency, low cost, and high volume. The nanoscale in materials processing is truly a new frontier. Metallic dental implants have been used successfully for decades, but they have serious shortcomings related to their osseointegration and the fact that their mechanical properties do not match those of bone. This paper reviews recent advances in the fabrication of novel coatings and nanopatterning of dental implants. It also provides a general summary of the state of the art in dental implant science and describes possible advantages of nanotechnology for future improvements. The ultimate goal is to produce materials and therapies that will bring state-of-the-art technology to the bedside and improve quality of life and current standards of care.

  14. Inverse Scattering Approach to Improving Pattern Recognition

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chapline, G; Fu, C

    2005-02-15

    The Helmholtz machine provides what may be the best existing model for how the mammalian brain recognizes patterns. Based on the observation that the ''wake-sleep'' algorithm for training a Helmholtz machine is similar to the problem of finding the potential for a multi-channel Schrodinger equation, we propose that the construction of a Schrodinger potential using inverse scattering methods can serve as a model for how the mammalian brain learns to extract essential information from sensory data. In particular, inverse scattering theory provides a conceptual framework for imagining how one might use EEG and MEG observations of brain-waves together with sensory feedback to improve human learning and pattern recognition. Longer term, implementation of inverse scattering algorithms on a digital or optical computer could be a step towards mimicking the seamless information fusion of the mammalian brain.

  15. Possible Approach to Improve Sensitivity of a Michelson Interferometer

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    FU Jian; TANG Shao-Fang

    2007-01-01

    @@ We propose a possible approach to achieve a 1/N sensitivity of Michelson interferometer by using a properly designed random phase modulation. Different from other approaches, the sensitivity improvement does not depend on increasing optical powers or utilizing the quantum properties of light. Moreover the requirements for optical losses and the quantum efficiencies of photodetection systems may be lower than the quantum approaches and the sensitivity improvement is independent of frequency in all the detection bands.

  16. Clinical procedure in sealing pit and fissure using technological aids: VistaCam iX Proof and Combi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabrizio Guerra

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The effectiveness of sealants in preventing pits and fissures decay is currently assessed by retention as principal clinical evaluation criteria. Among the determinants for sealant retention, an incomplete removal of plaque debris can cause lack of adhesion at the sealant-enamel interface. Therefore, in order to optimize the caries prevention outcome, clinical procedures of biofilm detection and cleansing are crucial. Technological aids can help clinicians in these critical phases. A clinical procedure is described of sealant application using VistaCam iX Proof fluorescence camera for quantitative assessment of surface demineralization and Combi air polishing unit for plaque removal. Pre and post air polishing intraoral VistaCam iX Proof images show the effectiveness of glycine airpolish technology in plaque removal. The results encourage technological aided clinical procedures in enhancing sealant application for pit and fissures caries prevention. Further clinical research is needed to validate our preliminary outcomes.

  17. Technology-aided programs for post-coma patients emerged from or in a minimally conscious state

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giulio E. Lancioni

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Post-coma persons in a minimally conscious state (MCS or emerged/emerging from such state (E-MCS, who are affected by extensive motor impairment and lack of speech, may develop an active role and interact with their environment with the help of technology-aided intervention programs. Although a number of studies have been conducted in this area during the last few years, new evidence about the efficacy of those programs is warranted. These three studies were an effort in that direction. Study I assessed a technology-aided program to enable six MCS participants to access preferred environmental stimulation independently. Studies II and III assessed technology-aided programs to enable six E-MCS participants to make choices. In Study II, three of those participants were led to choose among leisure and social stimuli, and caregiver interventions automatically presented to them. In Study III, the remaining three participants were led to choose (a among general stimulus/intervention options (e.g., songs, video-recordings of family members, and caregiver interventions and then (b among variants of those options. The results of all three studies were largely positive with substantial increases of independent stimulation access for the participants of Study I and independent choice behavior for the participants of Studies II and III. The results were analyzed in relation to previous data and in terms of their implications for daily contexts working with MCS and E-MCS persons affected by multiple disabilities.

  18. Technological aids for the rehabilitation of memory and executive functioning in children and adolescents with acquired brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linden, Mark; Hawley, Carol; Blackwood, Bronagh; Evans, Jonathan; Anderson, Vicki; O'Rourke, Conall

    2016-07-01

    The use of technology in healthcare settings is on the increase and may represent a cost-effective means of delivering rehabilitation. Reductions in treatment time, and delivery in the home, are also thought to be benefits of this approach. Children and adolescents with brain injury often experience deficits in memory and executive functioning that can negatively affect their school work, social lives, and future occupations. Effective interventions that can be delivered at home, without the need for high-cost clinical involvement, could provide a means to address a current lack of provision.We have systematically reviewed studies examining the effects of technology-based interventions for the rehabilitation of deficits in memory and executive functioning in children and adolescents with acquired brain injury. To assess the effects of technology-based interventions compared to placebo intervention, no treatment, or other types of intervention, on the executive functioning and memory of children and adolescents with acquired brain injury. We ran the search on the 30 September 2015. We searched the Cochrane Injuries Group Specialised Register, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), Ovid MEDLINE(R), Ovid MEDLINE(R) In-Process & Other Non-Indexed Citations, Ovid MEDLINE(R) Daily and Ovid OLDMEDLINE(R), EMBASE Classic + EMBASE (OvidSP), ISI Web of Science (SCI-EXPANDED, SSCI, CPCI-S, and CPSI-SSH), CINAHL Plus (EBSCO), two other databases, and clinical trials registers. We also searched the internet, screened reference lists, and contacted authors of included studies. Randomised controlled trials comparing the use of a technological aid for the rehabilitation of children and adolescents with memory or executive-functioning deficits with placebo, no treatment, or another intervention. Two review authors independently reviewed titles and abstracts identified by the search strategy. Following retrieval of full-text manuscripts, two review authors

  19. The Divisional Approach to Achieving Hospital Improvement Goals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cortazzo, Arnold D.; Allen, Robert M.

    1971-01-01

    The divisional or horizontal approach, rather than the traditional or vertical model, was employed in improving the major organizations and programatic and service structure of a residential facility for retardates, Sunland Training Center (Miami, Florida). (KW)

  20. IMPROVING THE FTTH BUSINESS CASE BENEFITS OF AN HOLISTIC APPROACH

    OpenAIRE

    Casier, Koen; Verbrugge, Sofie; Lannoo, Bart; Van Ooteghem, Jan; Demeester, Piet

    2011-01-01

    For most European operators, there is more value in upgrading their existing infrastructure than installing a new Fibre-to-the-Home (FTTH) network. One approach to improving the FTTH business case could be to use an holistic approach, tackling the business case on those three fronts - strategic geo-marketing, synergetic installation and detailed operational modelling. This will not only improve the viability of the business case of FTTH, but could also lead to an earlier FTTH deployment and h...

  1. Improving resource capacity planning in hospitals with business approaches

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lent, van Wineke Agnes Marieke

    2011-01-01

    This dissertation contributed to the knowledge on the translation of approaches from businesses and services to improve the resource capacity planning on tactical and operational level in (oncologic) hospital care. The following studies were presented: * Chapter 2 surveyed the business approache

  2. Improving the Earthquake Resilience of Buildings The worst case approach

    CERN Document Server

    Takewaki, Izuru; Fujita, Kohei

    2013-01-01

    Engineers are always interested in the worst-case scenario. One of the most important and challenging missions of structural engineers may be to narrow the range of unexpected incidents in building structural design. Redundancy, robustness and resilience play an important role in such circumstances. Improving the Earthquake Resilience of Buildings: The worst case approach discusses the importance of worst-scenario approach for improved earthquake resilience of buildings and nuclear reactor facilities. Improving the Earthquake Resilience of Buildings: The worst case approach consists of two parts. The first part deals with the characterization and modeling of worst or critical ground motions on inelastic structures and the related worst-case scenario in the structural design of ordinary simple building structures. The second part of the book focuses on investigating the worst-case scenario for passively controlled and base-isolated buildings. This allows for detailed consideration of a range of topics includin...

  3. An Improved ERT Approach for the Investigation of Subsurface Structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, De-Bao; Wang, Feng; Chen, Xiao-Dong; Ou, Jian; Wang, Hui

    2017-01-01

    The joint use of multiple geophysical data types has been proven to be a powerful tool to both improve subsurface imaging and help in the interpretation process. The main goal of this paper is to develop a multi-geophysical approach for subsurface experimental investigations in which seismic data are used to improve electrical resistivity tomography quality. The basic philosophy of the method is that seismic travel time data will be used to construct the prior model for the resistivity inversion. Synthetic data were employed to demonstrate the improvements enabled by the use of this strategy. Afterwards, the scheme was applied successfully on field data from northwestern China. The outcomes reveal that the multi-geophysical approach improves the interpretation of the subsurface over a single source.

  4. An Improved ERT Approach for the Investigation of Subsurface Structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, De-Bao; Wang, Feng; Chen, Xiao-Dong; Ou, Jian; Wang, Hui

    2016-08-01

    The joint use of multiple geophysical data types has been proven to be a powerful tool to both improve subsurface imaging and help in the interpretation process. The main goal of this paper is to develop a multi-geophysical approach for subsurface experimental investigations in which seismic data are used to improve electrical resistivity tomography quality. The basic philosophy of the method is that seismic travel time data will be used to construct the prior model for the resistivity inversion. Synthetic data were employed to demonstrate the improvements enabled by the use of this strategy. Afterwards, the scheme was applied successfully on field data from northwestern China. The outcomes reveal that the multi-geophysical approach improves the interpretation of the subsurface over a single source.

  5. Improved Approach Based on SVM for License Plate Character Recognition

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Xiao-hua; WANG Xiao-guang

    2005-01-01

    An improved approach based on support vector machine (SVM) called the center distance ratio method is presented for license plate character recognition. First the support vectors are pre-extracted. A minimal set called the margin vector set, which contains all support vectors, is extracted. These margin vectors compose new training data and construct the classifier by using the general SVM optimized. The experimental results show that the improved SVM method does well at correct rate and training speed.

  6. A possible approach to improve sensitivity of Michelson interferometer

    CERN Document Server

    Fu, J

    2006-01-01

    We propose a possible approach to achieve an 1/N sensitivity of Michelson interferometer by using a properly designed random phase modulation. Although, the $\\sqrt{N}$ precision improvement might not be achieved due to the complication of the random phase modulation, it can help interferometers such as LIGO to reach higher sensitivity.

  7. Improving TCP Performance over Mobile Satellite Channels: The ACKPrime Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, Keith; Czetty, Stephen

    1998-01-01

    Various issues associated with "Improving TCP Performance over Mobile Satellite Channels: The ACKPrime Approach" are presented in viewgraph form. Specific topics include: 1) TCP over mobile satellite links; 2) ways of breaking the control loop at the groundstation; 3) ACK implementation; and 4) ACK performance.

  8. Linear Motion Systems. A Modular Approach for Improved Straightness Performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nijsse, G.J.P.

    2001-01-01

    This thesis deals with straight motion systems. A modular approach has been applied in order to find ways to improve the performance. The main performance parameters that are considered are position accuracy, repeatability and, to a lesser extent, cost. Because of the increasing requirements to

  9. Fabrication approaches for plasmon-improved photovoltaic cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gritti, Claudia; Malureanu, Radu; Kardynal, B.

    During this talk we will present various fabrication approaches to improve the performance of photovoltaic (PV) cells by using metallic nanoparticles in order to generate photocurrent below the bandgap. This effect is possible due to the generation of surface plasmon polaritons (SPPs) in optimized...

  10. Crafting a Software Process Improvement Approach - A Retrospective Systematization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kuhrmann, Marco

    2015-01-01

    Structured approaches are beneficial for successful software process improvement (SPI). However, process engineers often struggle with standardized SPI methods, such as capability maturity model integration (CMMI) or International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 15504, and complain about too...... and provide a structured reflection on our experiences from creating and adopting the Artifact-based Software Process Improvement & Management (ArSPI) model. We present the steps of the construction procedure, the validation, and the dissemination of the model. Furthermore, we detail on the applied methods...... generic or voluminous approaches or methods that are alien to the organizations in which SPI is conducted. Therefore, process engineers need to customize existing SPI models or develop new approaches for company-specific SPI programs. While conducting SPI in the context of the German V-Modell XT, we faced...

  11. Making sense of geoscientific concepts using active pedagogy techniques, a technology aided experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huguet, C.; Noè, L. F.; Pearse, J.; Gómez Pérez, M.; Valencia Lopez, D.; Jimenez Heredia, A.; Patiño Avedaño, M.

    2016-12-01

    This work is the result of a teaching innovation project funded by the Conecta-TE unit at Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá, Colombia and results from the collaborative work of a team of geoscience professors and pedagogic and technical support experts. The need for this innovation stems from the constraints of teaching an applied science subject to a large cohort of approximately 500 students per semester in five sections which makes it impossible to include laboratories or scientific outings. These factors are compounded by the fact this is an introductory core course for Geoscience but also a service course that can be taken by any student on campus whether they have a scientific background or not. Therefore our aim was double: making the basic concepts more understandable for a broad audience, while at the same time maintaining a sufficiently high level to challenge and form a sound basis for students from the Geosciences program. Additionally we wanted to incorporate more active and practical aspects to the subject in order to enhance student learning. This in itself was challenging with groups of over 90 students. Data on student understanding and satisfaction were collected both in classes where the innovation was implemented and others in which it was not. Generally our innovation was positively rated, however the students perceived that it involved more work than the traditional lecture-based classes, but they preferred the continual assessment to traditional homework. The methodology was improved and implemented fully for the second round of teaching by introducing the methodology and objectives more clearly. In the future we expect to reduce the number of activities per class (the ´less-is-more' approach) whilst at the same time increasing the amount of classes which include active learning techniques. The ultimate goal is to extend the experience from the two current sections to all five sections of the course.

  12. Technology-aided programs for assisting communication and leisure engagement of persons with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis: two single-case studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lancioni, Giulio E; Singh, Nirbhay N; O'Reilly, Mark F; Sigafoos, Jeff; Ferlisi, Gabriele; Ferrarese, Giacomina; Zullo, Valeria; Addante, Luigi M; Spica, Antonella; Oliva, Doretta

    2012-01-01

    Technology-aided programs for assisting communication and leisure engagement were assessed in single-case studies involving two men with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Study I involved a 51-year-old man with a virtually total loss of his motor repertoire and assessed a technology-aided program aimed at enabling him to (a) write and send out text messages and have incoming messages read to him and (b) establish videophone connections with his children (i.e., establish video contact and communicate with them). Study II involved a 66-year-old man with virtually no motor behavior and apparent depression and assessed a technology-aided program aimed at enabling him to (a) engage in leisure activities and make requests for basic needs and (b) use a low-demand messaging system. The results of both studies were highly encouraging. The participant of Study I could use the technology-aided program for effective communication and social interaction with multiple partners as well as for family interaction. The participant of Study II could use the technology-aided program for leisure engagement, requests, and basic family contacts/communication. The implications of technology for helping persons with severe ALS levels maintain an active and constructive role are discussed.

  13. An Approach to Improve the Performance of PM Forecasters.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paulo S G de Mattos Neto

    Full Text Available The particulate matter (PM concentration has been one of the most relevant environmental concerns in recent decades due to its prejudicial effects on living beings and the earth's atmosphere. High PM concentration affects the human health in several ways leading to short and long term diseases. Thus, forecasting systems have been developed to support decisions of the organizations and governments to alert the population. Forecasting systems based on Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs have been highlighted in the literature due to their performances. In general, three ANN-based approaches have been found for this task: ANN trained via learning algorithms, hybrid systems that combine search algorithms with ANNs, and hybrid systems that combine ANN with other forecasters. Independent of the approach, it is common to suppose that the residuals (error series, obtained from the difference between actual series and forecasting, have a white noise behavior. However, it is possible that this assumption is infringed due to: misspecification of the forecasting model, complexity of the time series or temporal patterns of the phenomenon not captured by the forecaster. This paper proposes an approach to improve the performance of PM forecasters from residuals modeling. The approach analyzes the remaining residuals recursively in search of temporal patterns. At each iteration, if there are temporal patterns in the residuals, the approach generates the forecasting of the residuals in order to improve the forecasting of the PM time series. The proposed approach can be used with either only one forecaster or by combining two or more forecasting models. In this study, the approach is used to improve the performance of a hybrid system (HS composed by genetic algorithm (GA and ANN from residuals modeling performed by two methods, namely, ANN and own hybrid system. Experiments were performed for PM2.5 and PM10 concentration series in Kallio and Vallila stations in

  14. Approaches in Health Human Resource Forecasting: A Roadmap for Improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rafiei, Sima; Mohebbifar, Rafat; Hashemi, Fariba; Ezzatabadi, Mohammad Ranjbar; Farzianpour, Fereshteh

    2016-09-01

    Forecasting the demand and supply of health manpower in an accurate manner makes appropriate planning possible. The aim of this paper was to review approaches and methods for health manpower forecasting and consequently propose the features that improve the effectiveness of this important process of health manpower planning. A literature review was conducted for studies published in English from 1990-2014 using Pub Med, Science Direct, Pro Quest, and Google Scholar databases. Review articles, qualitative studies, retrospective and prospective studies describing or applying various types of forecasting approaches and methods in health manpower forecasting were included in the review. The authors designed an extraction data sheet based on study questions to collect data on studies' references, designs, and types of forecasting approaches, whether discussed or applied, with their strengths and weaknesses. Forty studies were included in the review. As a result, two main categories of approaches (conceptual and analytical) for health manpower forecasting were identified. Each approach had several strengths and weaknesses. As a whole, most of them were faced with some challenges, such as being static and unable to capture dynamic variables in manpower forecasting and causal relationships. They also lacked the capacity to benefit from scenario making to assist policy makers in effective decision making. An effective forecasting approach is supposed to resolve all the deficits that exist in current approaches and meet the key features found in the literature in order to develop an open system and a dynamic and comprehensive method necessary for today complex health care systems.

  15. The standardized surgical approach improves outcome of gallbladder cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igna Dorian

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The objective of this study was to examine the extent of surgical procedures, pathological findings, complications and outcome of patients treated in the last 12 years for gallbladder cancer. Methods The impact of a standardized more aggressive approach compared with historical controls of our center with an individual approach was examined. Of 53 patients, 21 underwent resection for cure and 32 for palliation. Results Overall hospital mortality was 9% and procedure related mortality was 4%. The standardized approach in UICC stage IIa, IIb and III led to a significantly improved outcome compared to patients with an individual approach (Median survival: 14 vs. 7 months, mean+/-SEM: 26+/-7 vs. 17+/-5 months, p = 0.014. The main differences between the standardized and the individual approach were anatomical vs. atypical liver resection, performance of systematic lymph dissection of the hepaticoduodenal ligament and the resection of the common bile duct. Conclusion Anatomical liver resection, proof for bile duct infiltration and, in case of tumor invasion, radical resection and lymph dissection of the hepaticoduodenal ligament are essential to improve outcome of locally advanced gallbladder cancer.

  16. A Simple Approach for Boundary Improvement of Euler Diagrams.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simonetto, Paolo; Archambault, Daniel; Scheidegger, Carlos

    2016-01-01

    General methods for drawing Euler diagrams tend to generate irregular polygons. Yet, empirical evidence indicates that smoother contours make these diagrams easier to read. In this paper, we present a simple method to smooth the boundaries of any Euler diagram drawing. When refining the diagram, the method must ensure that set elements remain inside their appropriate boundaries and that no region is removed or created in the diagram. Our approach uses a force system that improves the diagram while at the same time ensuring its topological structure does not change. We demonstrate the effectiveness of the approach through case studies and quantitative evaluations.

  17. SPEED-UP IMPROVEMENT USING PARALLEL APPROACH IN IMAGE STEGANOGRAPHY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    JyothiUpadhya K

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a parallel approach to improve the time complexity problem associated with sequential algorithms. An image steganography algorithm in transform domain is considered for implementation. Image steganography is a technique to hide secret message in an image. With the parallel implementation, large message can be hidden in large image since it does not take much processing time. It is implemented on GPU systems. Parallel programming is done using OpenCL in CUDA cores from NVIDIA. The speed-up improvement obtained is very good with reasonably good output signal quality, when large amount of data is processed

  18. Improvement of FK506 production by synthetic biology approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Li-Feng; Tao, Yang; Jin, Mei-Ying; Jiang, Hui

    2016-12-01

    Synthetic biology has been applied to direct improvement of valuable metabolite productions. Tacrolimus (FK506), a clinically used immunosuppressive agent isolated from many Streptomyces, is produced by fermentation in industry. Here we chose FK506 as an example to review recent progress in improving FK506 production, including enhancing transcription levels of biosynthetic genes, accelerating post-translational modification levels of biosynthetic enzymes, increasing activities of rate limiting enzymes, and rational supplement of limited precursors. FK506 production was increased from 25 % to sevenfold by these synthetic biology approaches.

  19. Supporting Simple Activity Engagement in Persons With Moderate to Severe Alzheimer's Disease Through a Technology-Aided Program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lancioni, Giulio E; Singh, Nirbhay N; O'Reilly, Mark F; Sigafoos, Jeff; D'Amico, Fiora; Pinto, Katia; Chiapparino, Claudia

    2017-05-01

    These 2 studies assessed a technology-aided program to support mild physical exercise or simple occupational activity in participants with moderate to severe Alzheimer's disease. Study 1 included 11 participants who were to perform a leg-raising response. Study 2 included 10 participants who were to sort objects into different containers. The program ensured that they received positive stimulation contingent on the responses and reminders/prompts after periods of nonresponding. Each study was carried out according to a nonconcurrent multiple baseline design across participants. The program was successful in supporting mild physical exercise and activity with objects in the 2 groups of participants, respectively. The participants also showed signs of positive involvement (eg, smiles and verbalizations) during the sessions. Moreover, staff personnel rated the program and its impact positively. The program may be considered a practical resource for supporting positive engagement in persons with moderate to severe Alzheimer's disease.

  20. Metabolomic approach for improving ethanol stress tolerance in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohta, Erika; Nakayama, Yasumune; Mukai, Yukio; Bamba, Takeshi; Fukusaki, Eiichiro

    2016-04-01

    The budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae is widely used for brewing and ethanol production. The ethanol sensitivity of yeast cells is still a serious problem during ethanol fermentation, and a variety of genetic approaches (e.g., random mutant screening under selective pressure of ethanol) have been developed to improve ethanol tolerance. In this study, we developed a strategy for improving ethanol tolerance of yeast cells based on metabolomics as a high-resolution quantitative phenotypic analysis. We performed gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis to identify and quantify 36 compounds on 14 mutant strains including knockout strains for transcription factor and metabolic enzyme genes. A strong relation between metabolome of these mutants and their ethanol tolerance was observed. Data mining of the metabolomic analysis showed that several compounds (such as trehalose, valine, inositol and proline) contributed highly to ethanol tolerance. Our approach successfully detected well-known ethanol stress related metabolites such as trehalose and proline thus, to further prove our strategy, we focused on valine and inositol as the most promising target metabolites in our study. Our results show that simultaneous deletion of LEU4 and LEU9 (leading to accumulation of valine) or INM1 and INM2 (leading to reduction of inositol) significantly enhanced ethanol tolerance. This study shows the potential of the metabolomic approach to identify target genes for strain improvement of S. cerevisiae with higher ethanol tolerance. Copyright © 2015 The Society for Biotechnology, Japan. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Approaches in Health Human Resource Forecasting: A Roadmap for Improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rafiei, Sima; Mohebbifar, Rafat; Hashemi, Fariba; Ezzatabadi, Mohammad Ranjbar; Farzianpour, Fereshteh

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Forecasting the demand and supply of health manpower in an accurate manner makes appropriate planning possible. The aim of this paper was to review approaches and methods for health manpower forecasting and consequently propose the features that improve the effectiveness of this important process of health manpower planning. Methods A literature review was conducted for studies published in English from 1990–2014 using Pub Med, Science Direct, Pro Quest, and Google Scholar databases. Review articles, qualitative studies, retrospective and prospective studies describing or applying various types of forecasting approaches and methods in health manpower forecasting were included in the review. The authors designed an extraction data sheet based on study questions to collect data on studies’ references, designs, and types of forecasting approaches, whether discussed or applied, with their strengths and weaknesses Results Forty studies were included in the review. As a result, two main categories of approaches (conceptual and analytical) for health manpower forecasting were identified. Each approach had several strengths and weaknesses. As a whole, most of them were faced with some challenges, such as being static and unable to capture dynamic variables in manpower forecasting and causal relationships. They also lacked the capacity to benefit from scenario making to assist policy makers in effective decision making. Conclusions An effective forecasting approach is supposed to resolve all the deficits that exist in current approaches and meet the key features found in the literature in order to develop an open system and a dynamic and comprehensive method necessary for today complex health care systems. PMID:27790343

  2. 49 CFR Appendix D to Part 218 - Requirements and Considerations for Implementing Technology Aided Point Protection

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... driver behavior (e.g., driving erratically) of any approaching motor vehicles. 6. Either the camera... protection as well as specific additional requirements for those operations involving remote control... engineer, remote control operator, other crewmember or other qualified person, such as a yardmaster. If the...

  3. Biotechnological approach in crop improvement by mutation breeding in Indonesia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Soeranto, H.; Sobrizal; Sutarto, Ismiyati; Manurung, Simon; Mastrizal [National Nuclear Energy Agency, Center for Research and Development of Isotope and Radiation Technology, Jakarta (Indonesia)

    2002-02-01

    Mutation breeding has become a proven method of improving crop varieties. Most research on plant mutation breeding in Indonesia is carried out at the Center for Research and Development of Isotope and Radiation Technology, National Nuclear Energy Agency (BATAN). Nowadays, a biotechnological approach has been incorporated in some mutation breeding researches in order to improve crop cultivars. This approach is simply based on cellular totipotency, or the ability to regenerate whole, flowering plants from isolated organs, pieces of tissue, individual cells, and protoplasts. Tissue culture technique has bee extensively used for micro propagation of disease-free plants. Other usage of this technique involves in various steps of the breeding process such as germplasm preservation, clonal propagation, and distant hybridization. Mutation breeding combined with tissue culture technique has made a significant contribution in inducing plant genetic variation, by improving selection technology, and by accelerating breeding time as for that by using anther or pollen culture. In Indonesia, research on mutation breeding combined with tissue culture techniques has been practiced in different crop species including rice, ginger, banana, sorghum etc. Specially in rice, a research on identification of DNA markers linked to blast disease resistance is now still progressing. A compiled report from some research activities is presented in this paper. (author)

  4. Improving software product line using an ontological approach

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    MEGHA BHUSHAN; SHIVANI GOEL

    2016-12-01

    Software product line (SPL) is an emergent strategy for generating software products. The variability and commonality of SPL is illustrated by feature models (FMs). The quality of software products relies on the correctness of SPL. The overall benefits of software product line engineering (SPLE) are reduced by various kinds of defects such as dead features and false optional features in an FM. These defects can be inherited in the software products built from a defective product line model (PLM). In this paper, the problem of enhancing the quality of software products derived from SPLE is handled. An ontological based approach is proposed following first-order logic (FOL) rules to identify defects namely dead features and false optional features. The classification of cases forthese defects in FMs that represent variability of SPL is defined. The presented approach has been explained with the help of an FM derived from the standard case in product line (PL) community. The initial empirical evaluation of the proposed approach analyses 35 FMs with different sizes. The results obtained exhibit that the proposed approach is accurate, effective, scalable up to 200 features and therefore improves SPL

  5. An integrated turbocharger design approach to improve engine performance

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2010-01-01

    Turbocharging technology is today considered as a promising way for internal combustion engine energy saving and CO2 reduction.Turbocharger design is a major challenge for turbocharged engine performance improvement.The turbocharger designer must draw upon the information of engine operation conditions,and an appropriate link between the engine requirements and design features must be carefully developed to generate the most suitable design recommendation.The objective of this research is to develop a turbocharger design approach for better turbocharger matching to an internal combustion engine.The development of the approach is based on the concept of turbocharger design and interaction links between engine cycle requirements and design parameter values.A turbocharger through flow model is then used to generate the design alternatives.This integrated method has been applied with success to a gasoline engine turbocharger assembly.

  6. Technology-Aided Leisure and Communication Opportunities for Two Post-Coma Persons Emerged from a Minimally Conscious State and Affected by Multiple Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lancioni, Giulio E.; O'Reilly, Mark F.; Singh, Nirbhay N.; Sigafoos, Jeff; Buonocunto, Francesca; Sacco, Valentina; Navarro, Jorge; Lanzilotti, Crocifissa; De Tommaso, Marina; Megna, Marisa; Oliva, Doretta

    2013-01-01

    This study assessed technology-aided programs for helping two post-coma persons, who had emerged from a minimally conscious state and were affected by multiple disabilities, to (a) engage with leisure stimuli and request caregiver's procedures, (b) send out and listen to text messages for communication with distant partners, and (c) combine…

  7. Improving Polyp Detection Algorithms for CT Colonography: Pareto Front Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Adam; Li, Jiang; Summers, Ronald M; Petrick, Nicholas; Hara, Amy K

    2010-03-21

    We investigated a Pareto front approach to improving polyp detection algorithms for CT colonography (CTC). A dataset of 56 CTC colon surfaces with 87 proven positive detections of 53 polyps sized 4 to 60 mm was used to evaluate the performance of a one-step and a two-step curvature-based region growing algorithm. The algorithmic performance was statistically evaluated and compared based on the Pareto optimal solutions from 20 experiments by evolutionary algorithms. The false positive rate was lower (pPareto optimization process can effectively help in fine-tuning and redesigning polyp detection algorithms.

  8. An intercomparison of approaches for improving operational seasonal streamflow forecasts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. A. Mendoza

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available For much of the last century, forecasting centers around the world have offered seasonal streamflow predictions to support water management. Recent work suggests that the two major avenues to advance seasonal predictability are improvements in the estimation of initial hydrologic conditions (IHCs and the incorporation of climate information. This study investigates the marginal benefits of a variety of methods using IHCs and/or climate information, focusing on seasonal water supply forecasts (WSFs in five case study watersheds located in the US Pacific Northwest region. We specify two benchmark methods that mimic standard operational approaches – statistical regression against IHCs and model-based ensemble streamflow prediction (ESP – and then systematically intercompare WSFs across a range of lead times. Additional methods include (i statistical techniques using climate information either from standard indices or from climate reanalysis variables and (ii several hybrid/hierarchical approaches harnessing both land surface and climate predictability. In basins where atmospheric teleconnection signals are strong, and when watershed predictability is low, climate information alone provides considerable improvements. For those basins showing weak teleconnections, custom predictors from reanalysis fields were more effective in forecast skill than standard climate indices. ESP predictions tended to have high correlation skill but greater bias compared to other methods, and climate predictors failed to substantially improve these deficiencies within a trace weighting framework. Lower complexity techniques were competitive with more complex methods, and the hierarchical expert regression approach introduced here (hierarchical ensemble streamflow prediction – HESP provided a robust alternative for skillful and reliable water supply forecasts at all initialization times. Three key findings from this effort are (1 objective approaches supporting

  9. Improving awareness in message exchanging platform - a knowledge driven approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srinivasan, Arunkumar; Abellera, John P; Danos, Scott; McNabb, Scott

    2007-10-11

    One of the key functionalities in the Enterprise Application Integration (EAI) engines is a dashboard to provide awareness on the message traffic, performance and throughput. Current dashboards present a rich data set but often lacks context to interpret these data. This poster presents a knowledge driven approach in improving the dashboard by presenting contextualized information. The new dashboard will be evaluated by measuring user awareness, as measured by applying a quantitative analysis technique called SAGAT (Situational Awareness Global Assessment Technique) and the results will be presented.

  10. Using Balanced Scorecard (BSC) approach to improve ergonomics programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandes, Marcelo Vicente Forestieri

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to propose foundations for a theory of using the Balanced Scorecard (BSC) methodology to improve the strategic view of ergonomics inside the organizations. This approach may help to promote a better understanding of investing on an ergonomic program to obtain good results in quality and production, as well as health maintenance. It is explained the basics of balanced scorecard, and how ergonomists could use this to work with strategic enterprises demand. Implications of this viewpoint for the development of a new methodology for ergonomics strategy views are offered.

  11. An intercomparison of approaches for improving operational seasonal streamflow forecasts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendoza, Pablo A.; Wood, Andrew W.; Clark, Elizabeth; Rothwell, Eric; Clark, Martyn P.; Nijssen, Bart; Brekke, Levi D.; Arnold, Jeffrey R.

    2017-07-01

    For much of the last century, forecasting centers around the world have offered seasonal streamflow predictions to support water management. Recent work suggests that the two major avenues to advance seasonal predictability are improvements in the estimation of initial hydrologic conditions (IHCs) and the incorporation of climate information. This study investigates the marginal benefits of a variety of methods using IHCs and/or climate information, focusing on seasonal water supply forecasts (WSFs) in five case study watersheds located in the US Pacific Northwest region. We specify two benchmark methods that mimic standard operational approaches - statistical regression against IHCs and model-based ensemble streamflow prediction (ESP) - and then systematically intercompare WSFs across a range of lead times. Additional methods include (i) statistical techniques using climate information either from standard indices or from climate reanalysis variables and (ii) several hybrid/hierarchical approaches harnessing both land surface and climate predictability. In basins where atmospheric teleconnection signals are strong, and when watershed predictability is low, climate information alone provides considerable improvements. For those basins showing weak teleconnections, custom predictors from reanalysis fields were more effective in forecast skill than standard climate indices. ESP predictions tended to have high correlation skill but greater bias compared to other methods, and climate predictors failed to substantially improve these deficiencies within a trace weighting framework. Lower complexity techniques were competitive with more complex methods, and the hierarchical expert regression approach introduced here (hierarchical ensemble streamflow prediction - HESP) provided a robust alternative for skillful and reliable water supply forecasts at all initialization times. Three key findings from this effort are (1) objective approaches supporting methodologically

  12. A woman-led approach to improving postnatal care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fryer-Croxall, Claire; Bailey, Elizabeth

    2014-01-01

    As a large NHS teaching trust we see 6,000 women a year who birth with us. Newly appointed as a modern matron, I noted that poor experience on our postnatal ward has always been a key issue in the complaints we receive and from the feedback that our women give to us. The ImPosE (improving postnatal experience) project was launched in December 2013. This brought together members of the multidisciplinary team who were committed to developing our postnatal ward and improving it for our women and their families. We used a quality management approach, putting 'customer' experience at the core, and implemented a varied package of changes as directed by feedback from service users.

  13. Improvement of radiology services based on the process management approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amaral, Creusa Sayuri Tahara; Rozenfeld, Henrique; Costa, Janaina Mascarenhas Hornos; Magon, Maria de Fátima de Andrade; Mascarenhas, Yvone Maria

    2011-06-01

    The health sector requires continuous investments to ensure the improvement of products and services from a technological standpoint, the use of new materials, equipment and tools, and the application of process management methods. Methods associated with the process management approach, such as the development of reference models of business processes, can provide significant innovations in the health sector and respond to the current market trend for modern management in this sector (Gunderman et al. (2008) [4]). This article proposes a process model for diagnostic medical X-ray imaging, from which it derives a primary reference model and describes how this information leads to gains in quality and improvements. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. A Redesign Approach for Improving Animal Care Services for Researchers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okpe, Orighomisan; Kovach, Jamison V

    2017-07-01

    Because a research institution's animal care and use program oversees the provision of services specified in approved protocols designed by researchers, the effective provision of services within these programs is paramount to ensuring the humane care and treatment of research animals in accordance with federal, state, and local regulations and institutional policies. To improve the services provided to researchers through animal care and use programs, we investigated the relationship between the researchers who conduct these types of studies and the veterinary operations that provide care and treatment for research animals. Through a case study conducted at a leading public research university, we used an action-research approach to redesign aspects of the process through which researchers and the veterinary operations interact by using the Design for Six Sigma methodology. Using this structured approach for building quality into the design of a process to better serve customers, we identified and prioritized researchers' expectations regarding the role of veterinary operations in supporting their animal research activities. In addition, ideas for addressing researchers' top-rated needs were generated through focus groups. By updating online resources, creating checklists and newsletters, and hiring additional veterinary staff, the services provided were amended to provide researchers with increased access to valuable information, improved clarity regarding the process for obtaining access to research facilities, and enhanced support for animal care services.

  15. Therapeutic Enzymes: Applications and Approaches to Pharmacological Improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yari, Maryam; Ghoshoon, Mohammad Bagher; Vakili, Bahareh; Ghasemi, Younes

    2017-08-08

    Among therapeutic proteins, enzymes represent small and of course profitable market. They can be used to treat important, rare, and deadly diseases. Enzyme therapy is the only available treatment for certain disorders. Here, pharmaceutical enzymes are reviewed. They are categorized in four main groups, enzymes in replacement therapy, enzymes in cancer treatment, enzymes for fibrinolysis, and finally enzymes that are used topically for various treatments. Furthermore, enzyme gene therapy and future perspective of therapeutic enzymes are mentioned in brief. There are many important approved enzymes in pharmaceutical market. Several approaches such as point mutation, fusion protein designing, glycoengineering, and PEGylation were used to achieve improved enzymes. Although sometimes enzymes were engineered to facilitate production and purification process, appropriate delivery to target sites, extending half-life, and reducing immunogenicity are among the main goal of engineering approaches. Overall, enzymes play a critical role in treatment of common and rare diseases. Evaluation of new enzymes as well as improvement of approved enzymes are of the most important challenges in biotechnology. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  16. An integrated approach to improving the parallel applications development process

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rasmussen, Craig E [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Watson, Gregory R [IBM; Tibbitts, Beth R [IBM

    2009-01-01

    The development of parallel applications is becoming increasingly important to a broad range of industries. Traditionally, parallel programming was a niche area that was primarily exploited by scientists trying to model extremely complicated physical phenomenon. It is becoming increasingly clear, however, that continued hardware performance improvements through clock scaling and feature-size reduction are simply not going to be achievable for much longer. The hardware vendor's approach to addressing this issue is to employ parallelism through multi-processor and multi-core technologies. While there is little doubt that this approach produces scaling improvements, there are still many significant hurdles to be overcome before parallelism can be employed as a general replacement to more traditional programming techniques. The Parallel Tools Platform (PTP) Project was created in 2005 in an attempt to provide developers with new tools aimed at addressing some of the parallel development issues. Since then, the introduction of a new generation of peta-scale and multi-core systems has highlighted the need for such a platform. In this paper, we describe some of the challenges facing parallel application developers, present the current state of PTP, and provide a simple case study that demonstrates how PTP can be used to locate a potential deadlock situation in an MPI code.

  17. An integrated approach to improving the parallel applications development process

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rasmussen, Craig E [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Watson, Gregory R [IBM; Tibbitts, Beth R [IBM

    2009-01-01

    The development of parallel applications is becoming increasingly important to a broad range of industries. Traditionally, parallel programming was a niche area that was primarily exploited by scientists trying to model extremely complicated physical phenomenon. It is becoming increasingly clear, however, that continued hardware performance improvements through clock scaling and feature-size reduction are simply not going to be achievable for much longer. The hardware vendor's approach to addressing this issue is to employ parallelism through multi-processor and multi-core technologies. While there is little doubt that this approach produces scaling improvements, there are still many significant hurdles to be overcome before parallelism can be employed as a general replacement to more traditional programming techniques. The Parallel Tools Platform (PTP) Project was created in 2005 in an attempt to provide developers with new tools aimed at addressing some of the parallel development issues. Since then, the introduction of a new generation of peta-scale and multi-core systems has highlighted the need for such a platform. In this paper, we describe some of the challenges facing parallel application developers, present the current state of PTP, and provide a simple case study that demonstrates how PTP can be used to locate a potential deadlock situation in an MPI code.

  18. Phylo: a citizen science approach for improving multiple sequence alignment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawrykow, Alexander; Roumanis, Gary; Kam, Alfred; Kwak, Daniel; Leung, Clarence; Wu, Chu; Zarour, Eleyine; Sarmenta, Luis; Blanchette, Mathieu; Waldispühl, Jérôme

    2012-01-01

    Comparative genomics, or the study of the relationships of genome structure and function across different species, offers a powerful tool for studying evolution, annotating genomes, and understanding the causes of various genetic disorders. However, aligning multiple sequences of DNA, an essential intermediate step for most types of analyses, is a difficult computational task. In parallel, citizen science, an approach that takes advantage of the fact that the human brain is exquisitely tuned to solving specific types of problems, is becoming increasingly popular. There, instances of hard computational problems are dispatched to a crowd of non-expert human game players and solutions are sent back to a central server. We introduce Phylo, a human-based computing framework applying "crowd sourcing" techniques to solve the Multiple Sequence Alignment (MSA) problem. The key idea of Phylo is to convert the MSA problem into a casual game that can be played by ordinary web users with a minimal prior knowledge of the biological context. We applied this strategy to improve the alignment of the promoters of disease-related genes from up to 44 vertebrate species. Since the launch in November 2010, we received more than 350,000 solutions submitted from more than 12,000 registered users. Our results show that solutions submitted contributed to improving the accuracy of up to 70% of the alignment blocks considered. We demonstrate that, combined with classical algorithms, crowd computing techniques can be successfully used to help improving the accuracy of MSA. More importantly, we show that an NP-hard computational problem can be embedded in casual game that can be easily played by people without significant scientific training. This suggests that citizen science approaches can be used to exploit the billions of "human-brain peta-flops" of computation that are spent every day playing games. Phylo is available at: http://phylo.cs.mcgill.ca.

  19. Phylo: a citizen science approach for improving multiple sequence alignment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Kawrykow

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Comparative genomics, or the study of the relationships of genome structure and function across different species, offers a powerful tool for studying evolution, annotating genomes, and understanding the causes of various genetic disorders. However, aligning multiple sequences of DNA, an essential intermediate step for most types of analyses, is a difficult computational task. In parallel, citizen science, an approach that takes advantage of the fact that the human brain is exquisitely tuned to solving specific types of problems, is becoming increasingly popular. There, instances of hard computational problems are dispatched to a crowd of non-expert human game players and solutions are sent back to a central server. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We introduce Phylo, a human-based computing framework applying "crowd sourcing" techniques to solve the Multiple Sequence Alignment (MSA problem. The key idea of Phylo is to convert the MSA problem into a casual game that can be played by ordinary web users with a minimal prior knowledge of the biological context. We applied this strategy to improve the alignment of the promoters of disease-related genes from up to 44 vertebrate species. Since the launch in November 2010, we received more than 350,000 solutions submitted from more than 12,000 registered users. Our results show that solutions submitted contributed to improving the accuracy of up to 70% of the alignment blocks considered. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We demonstrate that, combined with classical algorithms, crowd computing techniques can be successfully used to help improving the accuracy of MSA. More importantly, we show that an NP-hard computational problem can be embedded in casual game that can be easily played by people without significant scientific training. This suggests that citizen science approaches can be used to exploit the billions of "human-brain peta-flops" of computation that are spent every day playing games

  20. Managerial process improvement: a lean approach to eliminating medication delivery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hussain, Aftab; Stewart, LaShonda M; Rivers, Patrick A; Munchus, George

    2015-01-01

    Statistical evidence shows that medication errors are a major cause of injuries that concerns all health care oganizations. Despite all the efforts to improve the quality of care, the lack of understanding and inability of management to design a robust system that will strategically target those factors is a major cause of distress. The paper aims to discuss these issues. Achieving optimum organizational performance requires two key variables; work process factors and human performance factors. The approach is that healthcare administrators must take in account both variables in designing a strategy to reduce medication errors. However, strategies that will combat such phenomena require that managers and administrators understand the key factors that are causing medication delivery errors. The authors recommend that healthcare organizations implement the Toyota Production System (TPS) combined with human performance improvement (HPI) methodologies to eliminate medication delivery errors in hospitals. Despite all the efforts to improve the quality of care, there continues to be a lack of understanding and the ability of management to design a robust system that will strategically target those factors associated with medication errors. This paper proposes a solution to an ambiguous workflow process using the TPS combined with the HPI system.

  1. Persons with Alzheimer's disease engage in leisure and mild physical activity with the support of technology-aided programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lancioni, Giulio E; Singh, Nirbhay N; O'Reilly, Mark F; Sigafoos, Jeff; D'Amico, Fiora; Sasanelli, Giovanni; De Vanna, Floriana; Signorino, Mario

    2015-02-01

    Three studies were conducted to assess technology-aided programs to promote leisure engagement and mild physical activity in persons with Alzheimer's disease. Specifically, Study I assessed a program aimed at enabling three patients with mild or moderate Alzheimer's disease to choose among different music options and activate the preferred ones. Studies II and III were directed at patients in the low moderate or severe stages of the Alzheimer's disease who were no longer capable of ambulating and spent their time generally inactive, sitting in their wheelchairs. In particular, Study II used a program to help three patients exercise an arm-raising movement. Study III used a program to help three patients exercise a leg-foot movement. Each study was carried out according to a nonconcurrent multiple baseline design across patients. Results were very encouraging. The patients of Study I learned to choose and activate their preferred music pieces. The patients of Studies II and III enhanced their performance of the target movements and increased their indices of positive participation (e.g., smiles and verbalizations) during the sessions. The applicability of the programs in daily contexts and their implications for the patients involved are discussed.

  2. An effective and efficient approach for manually improving geocoded data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Knoblock Craig A

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The process of geocoding produces output coordinates of varying degrees of quality. Previous studies have revealed that simply excluding records with low-quality geocodes from analysis can introduce significant bias, but depending on the number and severity of the inaccuracies, their inclusion may also lead to bias. Little quantitative research has been presented on the cost and/or effectiveness of correcting geocodes through manual interactive processes, so the most cost effective methods for improving geocoded data are unclear. The present work investigates the time and effort required to correct geocodes contained in five health-related datasets that represent examples of data commonly used in Health GIS. Results Geocode correction was attempted on five health-related datasets containing a total of 22,317 records. The complete processing of these data took 11.4 weeks (427 hours, averaging 69 seconds of processing time per record. Overall, the geocodes associated with 12,280 (55% of records were successfully improved, taking 95 seconds of processing time per corrected record on average across all five datasets. Geocode correction improved the overall match rate (the number of successful matches out of the total attempted from 79.3 to 95%. The spatial shift between the location of original successfully matched geocodes and their corrected improved counterparts averaged 9.9 km per corrected record. After geocode correction the number of city and USPS ZIP code accuracy geocodes were reduced from 10,959 and 1,031 to 6,284 and 200, respectively, while the number of building centroid accuracy geocodes increased from 0 to 2,261. Conclusion The results indicate that manual geocode correction using a web-based interactive approach is a feasible and cost effective method for improving the quality of geocoded data. The level of effort required varies depending on the type of data geocoded. These results can be used to choose between

  3. On the Standard Approach to Renormalization Group Improvement

    CERN Document Server

    Chishtie, F A; Mann, R B; McKeon, D G C; Steele, T G

    2006-01-01

    Two approaches to renormalization-group improvement are examined: the substitution of the solutions of running couplings, masses and fields into perturbatively computed quantities is compared with the systematic sum of all the leading log (LL), next-to-leading log (NLL) etc. contributions to radiatively corrected processes, with n-loop expressions for the running quantities being responsible for summing N^{n}LL contributions. A detailed comparison of these procedures is made in the context of the effective potential V in the 4-dimensional O(4) massless $\\lambda \\phi^{4}$ model, showing the distinction between these procedures at two-loop order when considering the NLL contributions to the effective potential V.

  4. M-Banking Security - a futuristic improved security approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaradhana A Deshmukh

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available In last few decades large technology development raised various new needs. Financial sector has also no exception. People are approaching all over the world to fulfill there dreams. Any sector needs to understand changing need of customer. In order to satisfy financial need for customer banks are taking help of new technology such as internet. Only problem remain is of security. The aim of this work is to provide a secure environment in terms of security for transaction by various ways. In order to improve security we are making use of "Steganography" technique in the way never used before. Task of enhancing security include construction of formula for both data encryption and also for hiding pattern. Server should not process any fake request hence concept of custom "Session id" and "Request id" is introduced. Implementation of such a security constraints in banking sector not only help to serve customer in better way but also make customer confident and satisfy.

  5. M-Banking Security - a futuristic improved security approach

    CERN Document Server

    Navale, Geeta S; Deshmukh, Aaradhana A

    2010-01-01

    In last few decades large technology development raised various new needs. Financial sector has also no exception. People are approaching all over the world to fulfill there dreams. Any sector needs to understand changing need of customer. In order to satisfy financial need for customer banks are taking help of new technology such as internet. Only problem remain is of security. The aim of this work is to provide a secure environment in terms of security for transaction by various ways. In order to improve security we are making use of "Steganography" technique in the way never used before. Task of enhancing security include construction of formula for both data encryption and also for hiding pattern. Server should not process any fake request hence concept of custom "Session id" and "Request id" is introduced. Implementation of such a security constraints in banking sector not only help to serve customer in better way but also make customer confident and satisfy.

  6. AN APPROACH TO IMPROVING THE TEACHING OF LISTENING

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    1999-01-01

    With more and more importance being attached to communicative competence,both teachers andlearners have become aware of how essential listening as a language skill is for communication.However,traditional listening classroom seems to have failed to help learners become effectiveand successful listeners both in and out of the classroom.Many learners have associated listeningcourses with pain and boredom and often complain that they benefit little from listening lessons.That explains to some extent why many learners’ listening ability stagnates and remains at ele-mentary level although their other skills like reading,writing even speaking are advancing steadi-ly.This article aims to have a close look at the problems confronted by teachers in the traditionallistening classroom and,in the meantime,tries to give a brief introduction to an approach to im-proving the teaching of listening by incorporating pre-listening,while-listening and post-listeninginto an integrated listening class.

  7. Various approaches to modify biomaterial surfaces for improving hemocompatibility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mao, Chun; Qiu, Yongzhi; Sang, Haibo; Mei, Hua; Zhu, Aiping; Shen, Jian; Lin, Sicong

    2004-06-30

    In this paper, the mechanism of thrombus formation on the surface of polymeric materials and the various approaches of modifying biomaterial surfaces to improve their hemocompatibility are reviewed. Moreover, the blood compatibility of the cellulose membrane grafted with O-butyrylchitosan (OBCS) by using a radiation grafting technique was studied. Surface analysis of grafted cellulose membrane was verified by attenuated total reflection Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR) and electron spectroscopy for chemical analysis (ESCA), which confirmed that OBCS was successfully grafted onto the cellulose membrane surfaces. Blood compatibility of the grafted cellulose membranes was evaluated by platelet rich plasma (PRP) contacting experiments and protein adsorption experiments using blank cellulose membranes as the control. The blood compatibility of OBCS grafted cellulose membranes is better than that of blank cellulose membranes. These results suggest that the photocrosslinkable chitosan developed here has the potential of serving in blood-contacting applications in medical use.

  8. PARTICLE FILTER BASED VEHICLE TRACKING APPROACH WITH IMPROVED RESAMPLING STAGE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei Leong Khong

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Optical sensors based vehicle tracking can be widely implemented in traffic surveillance and flow control. The vast development of video surveillance infrastructure in recent years has drawn the current research focus towards vehicle tracking using high-end and low cost optical sensors. However, tracking vehicles via such sensors could be challenging due to the high probability of changing vehicle appearance and illumination, besides the occlusion and overlapping incidents. Particle filter has been proven as an approach which can overcome nonlinear and non-Gaussian situations caused by cluttered background and occlusion incidents. Unfortunately, conventional particle filter approach encounters particle degeneracy especially during and after the occlusion. Particle filter with sampling important resampling (SIR is an important step to overcome the drawback of particle filter, but SIR faced the problem of sample impoverishment when heavy particles are statistically selected many times. In this work, genetic algorithm has been proposed to be implemented in the particle filter resampling stage, where the estimated position can converge faster to hit the real position of target vehicle under various occlusion incidents. The experimental results show that the improved particle filter with genetic algorithm resampling method manages to increase the tracking accuracy and meanwhile reduce the particle sample size in the resampling stage.

  9. Improving Empirical Approaches to Estimating Local Greenhouse Gas Emissions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blackhurst, M.; Azevedo, I. L.; Lattanzi, A.

    2016-12-01

    Evidence increasingly indicates our changing climate will have significant global impacts on public health, economies, and ecosystems. As a result, local governments have become increasingly interested in climate change mitigation. In the U.S., cities and counties representing nearly 15% of the domestic population plan to reduce 300 million metric tons of greenhouse gases over the next 40 years (or approximately 1 ton per capita). Local governments estimate greenhouse gas emissions to establish greenhouse gas mitigation goals and select supporting mitigation measures. However, current practices produce greenhouse gas estimates - also known as a "greenhouse gas inventory " - of empirical quality often insufficient for robust mitigation decision making. Namely, current mitigation planning uses sporadic, annual, and deterministic estimates disaggregated by broad end use sector, obscuring sources of emissions uncertainty, variability, and exogeneity that influence mitigation opportunities. As part of AGU's Thriving Earth Exchange, Ari Lattanzi of City of Pittsburgh, PA recently partnered with Dr. Inez Lima Azevedo (Carnegie Mellon University) and Dr. Michael Blackhurst (University of Pittsburgh) to improve the empirical approach to characterizing Pittsburgh's greenhouse gas emissions. The project will produce first-order estimates of the underlying sources of uncertainty, variability, and exogeneity influencing Pittsburgh's greenhouse gases and discuss implications of mitigation decision making. The results of the project will enable local governments to collect more robust greenhouse gas inventories to better support their mitigation goals and improve measurement and verification efforts.

  10. Improved Omnidirectional Odometry for a View-Based Mapping Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valiente, David; Gil, Arturo; Reinoso, Óscar; Juliá, Miguel; Holloway, Mathew

    2017-01-01

    This work presents an improved visual odometry using omnidirectional images. The main purpose is to generate a reliable prior input which enhances the SLAM (Simultaneous Localization and Mapping) estimation tasks within the framework of navigation in mobile robotics, in detriment of the internal odometry data. Generally, standard SLAM approaches extensively use data such as the main prior input to localize the robot. They also tend to consider sensory data acquired with GPSs, lasers or digital cameras, as the more commonly acknowledged to re-estimate the solution. Nonetheless, the modeling of the main prior is crucial, and sometimes especially challenging when it comes to non-systematic terms, such as those associated with the internal odometer, which ultimately turn to be considerably injurious and compromise the convergence of the system. This omnidirectional odometry relies on an adaptive feature point matching through the propagation of the current uncertainty of the system. Ultimately, it is fused as the main prior input in an EKF (Extended Kalman Filter) view-based SLAM system, together with the adaption of the epipolar constraint to the omnidirectional geometry. Several improvements have been added to the initial visual odometry proposal so as to produce better performance. We present real data experiments to test the validity of the proposal and to demonstrate its benefits, in contrast to the internal odometry. Furthermore, SLAM results are included to assess its robustness and accuracy when using the proposed prior omnidirectional odometry. PMID:28208766

  11. Improved Omnidirectional Odometry for a View-Based Mapping Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Valiente

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available This work presents an improved visual odometry using omnidirectional images. The main purpose is to generate a reliable prior input which enhances the SLAM (Simultaneous Localization and Mapping estimation tasks within the framework of navigation in mobile robotics, in detriment of the internal odometry data. Generally, standard SLAM approaches extensively use data such as the main prior input to localize the robot. They also tend to consider sensory data acquired with GPSs, lasers or digital cameras, as the more commonly acknowledged to re-estimate the solution. Nonetheless, the modeling of the main prior is crucial, and sometimes especially challenging when it comes to non-systematic terms, such as those associated with the internal odometer, which ultimately turn to be considerably injurious and compromise the convergence of the system. This omnidirectional odometry relies on an adaptive feature point matching through the propagation of the current uncertainty of the system. Ultimately, it is fused as the main prior input in an EKF (Extended Kalman Filter view-based SLAM system, together with the adaption of the epipolar constraint to the omnidirectional geometry. Several improvements have been added to the initial visual odometry proposal so as to produce better performance. We present real data experiments to test the validity of the proposal and to demonstrate its benefits, in contrast to the internal odometry. Furthermore, SLAM results are included to assess its robustness and accuracy when using the proposed prior omnidirectional odometry.

  12. Team-Based Learning: A New Approach Toward Improving Education

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rita Rezaee

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available  Team-based learning is designed to provide students with both conceptual and procedural knowledge, aiming to enhance active learning and critical thinking. In the present study, team-based learning and lecture methods in teaching the “hospital organization and management” course among hospital management students were compared. This quasi-experimental study was conducted on 25 undergraduate students of management. Teaching sessions were divided into two parts. The first part was taught with interactive lectures and the second part with team-based learning method. The students' knowledge was measured before, immediately and two months (late post-test after teaching. Finally, the mean scores of the final exam and students' satisfaction towards the methods of teaching were measured. There was an improvement in test scores of the students after the TBL sessions when compared to the test scores after lecture sessions (P<0.001. Also, TBL group had significantly a higher amount of knowledge retention compared to the lecture group (P<0.001, but no significant relationship was found between the mean scores of the final exam in the TBL and lecture groups (P=0.116. Finally, the majority of the respondents were more satisfied with TBL sessions compared to the ones held through lecture (P=0.037. The results indicated that TBL provides a better outcome for students. We found that the TBL approach allowed us to create an active learning environment that contributed to the improvement of the students’ performances.

  13. A reinforcement learning approach to gait training improves retention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hasson, Christopher J; Manczurowsky, Julia; Yen, Sheng-Che

    2015-01-01

    Many gait training programs are based on supervised learning principles: an individual is guided towards a desired gait pattern with directional error feedback. While this results in rapid adaptation, improvements quickly disappear. This study tested the hypothesis that a reinforcement learning approach improves retention and transfer of a new gait pattern. The results of a pilot study and larger experiment are presented. Healthy subjects were randomly assigned to either a supervised group, who received explicit instructions and directional error feedback while they learned a new gait pattern on a treadmill, or a reinforcement group, who was only shown whether they were close to or far from the desired gait. Subjects practiced for 10 min, followed by immediate and overnight retention and over-ground transfer tests. The pilot study showed that subjects could learn a new gait pattern under a reinforcement learning paradigm. The larger experiment, which had twice as many subjects (16 in each group) showed that the reinforcement group had better overnight retention than the supervised group (a 32% vs. 120% error increase, respectively), but there were no differences for over-ground transfer. These results suggest that encouraging participants to find rewarding actions through self-guided exploration is beneficial for retention.

  14. How to improve patient satisfaction when patients are already satisfied: a continuous process-improvement approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friesner, Dan; Neufelder, Donna; Raisor, Janet; Bozman, Carl S

    2009-01-01

    The authors present a methodology that measures improvement in customer satisfaction scores when those scores are already high and the production process is slow and thus does not generate a large amount of useful data in any given time period. The authors used these techniques with data from a midsized rehabilitation institute affiliated with a regional, nonprofit medical center. Thus, this article functions as a case study, the findings of which may be applicable to a large number of other healthcare providers that share both the mission and challenges faced by this facility. The methodology focused on 2 factors: use of the unique characteristics of panel data to overcome the paucity of observations and a dynamic benchmarking approach to track process variability over time. By focusing on these factors, the authors identify some additional areas for process improvement despite the institute's past operational success.

  15. An improved probability mapping approach to assess genome mosaicism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gogarten J Peter

    2003-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Maximum likelihood and posterior probability mapping are useful visualization techniques that are used to ascertain the mosaic nature of prokaryotic genomes. However, posterior probabilities, especially when calculated for four-taxon cases, tend to overestimate the support for tree topologies. Furthermore, because of poor taxon sampling four-taxon analyses suffer from sensitivity to the long branch attraction artifact. Here we extend the probability mapping approach by improving taxon sampling of the analyzed datasets, and by using bootstrap support values, a more conservative tool to assess reliability. Results Quartets of orthologous proteins were complemented with homologs from selected reference genomes. The mapping of bootstrap support values from these extended datasets gives results similar to the original maximum likelihood and posterior probability mapping. The more conservative nature of the plotted support values allows to focus further analyses on those protein families that strongly disagree with the majority or plurality of genes present in the analyzed genomes. Conclusion Posterior probability is a non-conservative measure for support, and posterior probability mapping only provides a quick estimation of phylogenetic information content of four genomes. This approach can be utilized as a pre-screen to select genes that might have been horizontally transferred. Better taxon sampling combined with subtree analyses prevents the inconsistencies associated with four-taxon analyses, but retains the power of visual representation. Nevertheless, a case-by-case inspection of individual multi-taxon phylogenies remains necessary to differentiate unrecognized paralogy and shared phylogenetic reconstruction artifacts from horizontal gene transfer events.

  16. Improving imaging utilization through practice quality improvement (maintenance of certification part IV): a review of requirements and approach to implementation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffith, Brent; Brown, Manuel L; Jain, Rajan

    2014-04-01

    The purposes of this article are to review the American Board of Radiology requirements for practice quality improvement and to describe our approach to improving imaging utilization while offering a guide to implementing similar projects at other institutions, emphasizing the plan-do-study-act approach. There is increased emphasis on improving quality in health care. Our institution has undertaken a multiphase practice quality improvement project addressing the appropriate utilization of screening cervical spinal CT in an emergency department.

  17. [Food based approaches to improve vitamin and mineral nutrition adequacy].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oyarzún, M T; Uauy, R; Olivares, S

    2001-03-01

    This paper, using the nutrient density concept and the development of Food-Based Dietary Guidelines (FBDG), explores the nutritional adequacy of food patterns based on the main staples around the world--maize, wheat, rice and potato. The nutritional adequacy of the vitamins A, C, folates and the minerals iron, zinc and calcium in diets composed by these staples is analyzed. Projected diets modified by the addition of foods high in vitamins and minerals, based on food table composition information, are analyzed for changes in nutritional adequacy, in order to cover the nutritional requirements of all family members. This theoretical exercise shows that diets diversified by the addition of relatively small quantities (27-70 g) of foods like fruits, vegetables, legumes and meat improve substantially the nutritional adequacy of the vitamins A, C, folates, iron and zinc. In the case of calcium, the addition of a dairy source becomes essential. From the practical point of view, the implementation of the food based approach requires a national effort in order to support the production of nutrient rich foods and to promote consciousness of nutrient bioavailability, so that people may obtain all nutrient potential from foods. Simultaneously, the need of fortification programs at the national level is recognized. This is the case for critical nutrients, where requirements might be above the potential in available foods. A similar situation occurs in the case of vulnerable groups like pregnant women and infants, who need supplementation to ensure nutritional adequacy of their diets. In conclusion, the use of FBDG is a good alternative for improving the nutritional adequacy of diets based predominantly on staple foods. However, food fortification and supplementation programs directed to vulnerable groups are necessary and complementary practices to the FBDG implementation.

  18. Approaches to improve adherence to pharmacotherapy in patients with schizophrenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuler KM

    2014-05-01

    enhanced team-oriented approach to managing patients with schizophrenia improves adherence and supports corresponding reductions in relapse rates, inpatient admissions, and associated costs. Conclusion: Optimization of medication and involvement of caregivers are important to promoting adherence. A multidisciplinary team approach may be invaluable in identifying barriers to adherence and helping schizophrenia patients overcome them. Keywords: medication adherence, schizophrenia, community mental health services, social work, psychiatric

  19. A Multimodal Approach to Improve the Performance of Biometric System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chander Kant

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Biometric systems have very success rate in identifying an individual based on ones biological traits. In biometric history some features like weight, age, height etc. are also there to provide user recognition to some extent but not fully upto the mark because of their changing nature according to time and environment. These features are called soft biometric traits. Soft biometric traits are lack of permanence but they have some positive aspects in respect of enhancing the biometric system performance. Here in this paper, we have also highlighting the similar point but with a new aspect that is integrating the soft biometrics with fingerprint and face for improving the performance of biometric system. Here we have proposed an architecture of three different sensors to evaluate the system performance. The approach includes soft biometrics, fingerprint and face features, we have also proven the efficiency of proposed system regarding FAR (False Acceptance Ratio and total response time, with the help of MUBI tool (Multimodal Biometrics Integration.

  20. [Improvement of child survival in Mexico: the diagonal approach].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sepúlveda, Jaime; Bustreo, Flavia; Tapia, Roberto; Rivera, Juan; Lozano, Rafael; Olaiz, Gustavo; Partida, Virgilio; García-García, Ma de Lourdes; Valdespino, José Luis

    2007-01-01

    Public health interventions aimed at children in Mexico have placed the country among the seven countries on track to achieve the goal of child mortality reduction by 2015. We analysed census data, mortality registries, the nominal registry of children, national nutrition surveys, and explored temporal association and biological plausibility to explain the reduction of child, infant, and neonatal mortality rates. During the past 25 years, child mortality rates declined from 64 to 23 per 1000 livebirths. A dramatic decline in diarrhoea mortality rates was recorded. Polio, diphtheria, and measles were eliminated. Nutritional status of children improved significantly for wasting, stunting, and underweight. A selection of highly cost-effective interventions bridging clinics and homes, what we called the diagonal approach, were central to this progress. Although a causal link to the reduction of child mortality was not possible to establish, we saw evidence of temporal association and biological plausibility to the high level of coverage of public health interventions, as well as significant association to the investments in women education, social protection, water, and sanitation. Leadership and continuity of public health policies, along with investments on institutions and human resources strengthening, were also among the reasons for these achievements.

  1. Improvement of child survival in Mexico: the diagonal approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sepúlveda, Jaime; Bustreo, Flavia; Tapia, Roberto; Rivera, Juan; Lozano, Rafael; Oláiz, Gustavo; Partida, Virgilio; García-García, Lourdes; Valdespino, José Luis

    2006-12-01

    Public health interventions aimed at children in Mexico have placed the country among the seven countries on track to achieve the goal of child mortality reduction by 2015. We analysed census data, mortality registries, the nominal registry of children, national nutrition surveys, and explored temporal association and biological plausibility to explain the reduction of child, infant, and neonatal mortality rates. During the past 25 years, child mortality rates declined from 64 to 23 per 1000 livebirths. A dramatic decline in diarrhoea mortality rates was recorded. Polio, diphtheria, and measles were eliminated. Nutritional status of children improved significantly for wasting, stunting, and underweight. A selection of highly cost-effective interventions bridging clinics and homes, what we called the diagonal approach, were central to this progress. Although a causal link to the reduction of child mortality was not possible to establish, we saw evidence of temporal association and biological plausibility to the high level of coverage of public health interventions, as well as significant association to the investments in women education, social protection, water, and sanitation. Leadership and continuity of public health policies, along with investments on institutions and human resources strengthening, were also among the reasons for these achievements.

  2. An interprofessional approach to improving paediatric medication safety

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kennedy Neil

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Safe drug prescribing and administration are essential elements within undergraduate healthcare curricula, but medication errors, especially in paediatric practice, continue to compromise patient safety. In this area of clinical care, collective responsibility, team working and communication between health professionals have been identified as key elements in safe clinical practice. To date, there is limited research evidence as to how best to deliver teaching and learning of these competencies to practitioners of the future. Methods An interprofessional workshop to facilitate learning of knowledge, core competencies, communication and team working skills in paediatric drug prescribing and administration at undergraduate level was developed and evaluated. The practical, ward-based workshop was delivered to 4th year medical and 3rd year nursing students and evaluated using a pre and post workshop questionnaire with open-ended response questions. Results Following the workshop, students reported an increase in their knowledge and awareness of paediatric medication safety and the causes of medication errors (p Conclusion This study has helped bridge the knowledge-skills gap, demonstrating how an interprofessional approach to drug prescribing and administration has the potential to improve quality and safety within healthcare.

  3. Ethylmalonic encephalopathy: application of improved biochemical and molecular diagnostic approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drousiotou, A; DiMeo, I; Mineri, R; Georgiou, Th; Stylianidou, G; Tiranti, V

    2011-04-01

    Ethylmalonic encephalopathy (EE, OMIM # 602473) is an autosomal recessive metabolic disorder of infancy affecting the brain, the gastrointestinal tract and peripheral vessels. It is caused by a defect in the ETHE1 gene product, which was recently shown to be part of a metabolic pathway devoted to sulphide detoxification. We report the application of improved biochemical and molecular approaches to the diagnosis of three cases of EE from two unrelated Cypriot families. The children presented all the typical biochemical hallmarks of the disease including elevated lactate and butyrylcarnitine in blood and elevated urinary excretion of ethylmalonic acid, 2-methylsuccinate, isobutyrylglycine and isovalerylglycine. We also detected an elevated level of thiosulphate in urine, which we propose as an additional biochemical marker of the disease. The proband of the first family was shown to be a compound heterozygote for a missense mutation in exon 5, L185R, and a deletion of exon 4. The deletion was identified using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR). Using the same technique, the proband of the second family was found to be homozygous for the exon 4 deletion. A prenatal diagnosis was performed for the second family using qRT-PCR, thus establishing the usefulness of RT-PCR in prenatal diagnosis.

  4. Improving the health of Missouri communities: a process approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stafford-Alewine, S

    1997-12-01

    It is important to note that while many states have communities involved in processes similar to CHART, few, if any, offer a team of professionals to support these initiatives, and none have a statewide partnership that is as committed to the process as Missouri does. The relationship between the key partner organizations is a unique phenomenon, and is certainly a key success factor for the process. CHART is an active member of the Coalition for Healthier Cities and Communities, a national network that exists as a multi-sector partnership to service the widespread communities movement in the U.S. The Coalition serves as both a link to resources, and as a voice for policy and action. The issues and concerns, as well as the successes, of Missouri communities are carried to this national Coalition to present a unified voice for communities nationwide. CHART is an innovative approach to empowered community development. It provides communities the opportunity to participate in the process of change. The CHART process provides a vehicle for communities to take charge of the future, to determine locally how issues are addressed, and to set a course that assures improved health, quality of life, and sustainable community systems for the 21st century.

  5. Technology-aided recreation and communication opportunities for post-coma persons affected by lack of speech and extensive motor impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lancioni, Giulio E; Singh, Nirbhay N; O'Reilly, Mark F; Sigafoos, Jeff; Buonocunto, Francesca; Sacco, Valentina; Navarro, Jorge; Lanzilotti, Crocifissa; D'Amico, Fiora; Sasanelli, Giovanni; De Tommaso, Marina; Megna, Marisa

    2013-09-01

    This study assessed technology-aided intervention programs for two post-coma men who had re-acquired consciousness, but were unable to engage in personally or socially relevant occupations, given their lack of functional speech and their extensive motor disabilities. The microswitches used for accessing the program contents consisted of (a) a pressure sensor fixed in the palm of the first man's hand that could be activated with a small hand closure movement, and (b) an optic sensor fixed under the chin of the second man that could be activated by mouth opening movements. The programs' content consisted of recreation and communication options, which involved activating music, videos, and basic requests, sending and receiving (listening to) text messages, and placing phone calls. The results showed that the men (a) used the technology-aided programs successfully to manage the recreation and communication options available and (b) showed consistent preference for the sessions with the technology-aided program over other daily events. Family and staff members interviewed about the participants' programs (seven members for each participant) thought that the participants enjoyed the intervention sessions with the programs and that the programs had beneficial effects for them. Implications of the findings are discussed.

  6. The Use of Communicative Approach to improve College English Teaching

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    安君君

    2014-01-01

    The English college entrance examination reform is a sign that communicative competence will be more concerned rather than scores. Based on the theory of communicative approach, this paper discusses the use of communicative approach in college English teaching.

  7. An improved approach for flow-based cloud point extraction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frizzarin, Rejane M; Rocha, Fábio R P

    2014-04-11

    Novel strategies are proposed to circumvent the main drawbacks of flow-based cloud point extraction (CPE). The surfactant-rich phase (SRP) was directly retained into the optical path of the spectrophotometric cell, thus avoiding its dilution previously to the measurement and yielding higher sensitivity. Solenoid micro-pumps were exploited to improve mixing by the pulsed flow and also to modulate the flow-rate for retention and removal of the SRP, thus avoiding the elution step, often carried out with organic solvents. The heat released and the increase of the salt concentration provided by an on-line neutralization reaction were exploited to induce the cloud point without an external heating device. These innovations were demonstrated by the spectrophotometric determination of iron, yielding a linear response from 10 to 200 μg L(-1) with a coefficient of variation of 2.3% (n=7). Detection limit and sampling rate were estimated at 5 μg L(-1) (95% confidence level) and 26 samples per hour, respectively. The enrichment factor was 8.9 and the procedure consumed only 6 μg of TAN and 390 μg of Triton X-114 per determination. At the 95% confidence level, the results obtained for freshwater samples agreed with the reference procedure and those obtained for digests of bovine muscle, rice flour, brown bread and tort lobster agreed with the certified reference values. The proposed procedure thus shows advantages in relation to previously proposed approaches for flow-based CPE, being a fast and environmental friendly alternative for on-line separation and pre-concentration.

  8. Continuing education for performance improvement: a creative approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Patti-Ann; Hardesty, Ilana; White, Julie L; Zisblatt, Lara

    2012-10-01

    In an effort to improve patient safety and health care outcomes, continuing medical education has begun to focus on performance improvement initiatives for physician practices. Boston University School of Medicine's (BUSM) Continuing Nursing Education Accredited Provider Unit has begun a creative project to award nursing contact hours for nurses' participation in performance improvement activities. This column highlights its initial efforts.

  9. Improved Support Vector Machine Approach Based on Determining Thresholds Automatically

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Xiao-hua; YAN Xue-mei; WANG Xiao-guang

    2007-01-01

    To improve the training speed of support vector machine (SVM), a method called improved center distance ratio method (ICDRM) with determining thresholds automatically is presented here without reduce the identification rate. In this method border vectors are chosen from the given samples by comparing sample vectors with center distance ratio in advance. The number of training samples is reduced greatly and the training speed is improved. This method is used to the identification for license plate characters. Experimental results show that the improved SVM method-ICDRM does well at identification rate and training speed.

  10. An improvement approach to the interpretation of magnetic data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, H. L.; Hu, X. Y.; Liu, T. Y.

    2012-04-01

    There are numerous existing semi-automated data processing approaches being implemented which specialize in edge and depth of potential field source. The mathematical expression of tilt-angle has recently been developed into a depth-estimation routine, known as "tilt-depth". The tilt-depth was first introduced by Salem et al (2007) based on the tilt-angle which use first-order derivative to detect edge. In this paper, we propose the improvement on the tilt-depth method, which is based on the second-order derivatives of the reduced to pole (RTP) magnetic field, called edge detection and depth estimation based on vertical second-order derivatives (V2D-depth). Under certain assumptions such as when the contacts are nearly vertical and infinite depth extent and the magnetic field is vertical or RTP, the general expression published by Nabighian (1972) for the magnetic field over contacts located at a horizontal location of x=0 and at a depth of z0 is ( ) -x-- ΔT (x,z) = 2kFc·arctan z0 - z (1) Where kis the susceptibility contrast at the contact, F the magnitude of the magnetic field, c = 1 - cos2i · sin2A, A the angle between the positive h-axis and magnetic north, i the inclination of earth's field. The expressions for the vertical and horizontal derivatives of the magnetic field can be written as dΔT-= 2kF c·--z0--z-- dh x2 +(z0 - z)2 (2) dΔT-= 2kF c·--- x-- dz x2 +(z0 - z)2 (3) Based on Equations 2 and 3, we have 2 Tzz = d-ΔT-= 2kF c·--2x(z0--z)- dz2 [x2 + (z0 - z)2]2 (4) 2 2 2 Tzh = d-ΔT-= 2kF c·-(z0 -z)--x-2 dzdh [x2 + (z0 - z)2] (5) ° ---- x2 + (z - z)2 TzG = Tz2h +T 2zz = 2kFc ·----0--2- [x2 + (z0 - z)2] (6) Using Equations 4, 5 and 6, when z=0, we can get Tzz x T--+-T-= z- zG zh 0 (7) The V2D-depth is defined as ( T ) ( x ) θ = tan- 1 --zz-- = tan-1 - TzG + Tzh z0 (8) The V2D-depth amplitudes are restricted to values between -45° and +45° . It has the same interesting properties like the tilt-depth. Its responses vary from negative to positive

  11. Redesigning America's Schools: A Systems Approach to Improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duffy, Francis M.; Rogerson, Lynda G.; Blick, Charles

    Current school improvement tools are largely piecemeal and often lack credible supportive evidence. Knowledge Work Supervision (KWS) is built on the premise that schools must develop the capacity for sustaining districtwide improvements. Chapter 1, "The Past Before Us Is Not the Future," summarizes the key elements of the four phases of…

  12. An improved probe noise approach for acoustic feedback cancellation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Guo, Meng; Jensen, Søren Holdt; Jensen, Jesper

    2012-01-01

    -state error of the adaptive algorithm in a multiple-microphone and single-loudspeaker audio system. This is obtained through a specifically designed probe noise signal and a corresponding probe noise enhancement strategy. We show the effects of the proposed probe noise approach by deriving analytical......The perhaps most challenging problem in acoustic feedback cancellation using adaptive filters is the bias problem. It is well-known that a probe noise approach can effectively prevent this problem. However, when the probe noise must be inaudible and the steady-state error of the adaptive filter...... must be unchanged, this approach causes a significantly decreased convergence rate of the adaptive filter, and might thereby be less useful in practical applications. In this work, we propose a new probe noise approach which significantly increases the convergence rate while maintaining the steady...

  13. TWO APPROACHES TO IMPROVING THE CONSISTENCY OF COMPLEMENTARY JUDGEMENT MATRIX

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XuZeshui

    2002-01-01

    By the transformation relations between complementary judgement matrix and reciprocal judgement matrix ,this paper proposes two methods for improving the consistency of complementary judgement matrix and gives two simple practical iterative algorithms. These two algorithms are easy to implement on computer,and the modified complementary judgement matrices remain most information that original matrix contains. Thus the methods supplement and develop the theory and methodology for improving consistency of complementary judgement matrix.

  14. In search of molecular approaches to improving cancer therapy efficacy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cherepenko, E; Telegeev, G

    2014-03-01

    The study of genome rearrangement sites using full genome sequences is an important approach to revealing the nature of cancer and finding effective ways for cancer treatment. The progress in DNA sequencing could make the procedure of whole genome reading close to routine procedure of lower cost. The personal analysis of rearranged ends (PARE) method used for rearrangement study is reviewed. PARE allows identifying of individual cancer biomarkers making personal medicine possible. Also, the progress in "liquid biopsy" technology based on detection of circulating tumor cells in the patient's blood is shortly summarized. Another important approach is the discovered phenomenon of synthetic lethality causing cancer cell death due to appropriate combination of mutations in different genes or inhibitors of their protein products. Studies of genome rearrangements and synthetic lethality are considered promising for the development of effective cancer treatment approaches.

  15. BASICS OF INTEGRAL APPROACH TO IMPROVEMENT OF INNOVATION SYSTEM IN DEFENSE INDUSTRY COMPLEX OF RUSSIA

    OpenAIRE

    Анатолий Андреевич Чудин

    2014-01-01

    The author develops integral approach to improvement of innovation system as exemplified by defense industry complex (DIC) of Russia. Integral approach includes the elements of 3 approaches: system, synergetic and geotrion. This approach contains conceptual, modeling-projecting and realizing parts and the principles, mechanisms and technologies aimed for improvement of management of innovation system in Russia. DIC of Russia is an earth object – it is complex of complexes which is supposed to...

  16. Genetic Approaches to Appearance and Ancestry : Improving Forensic DNA Analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    L.C. Chaitanya (Lakshmi)

    2016-01-01

    textabstractTraditionally, routine forensic casework is based on comparative grounds. DNA profiles obtained from crime-scenes are compared with those of potential suspects or DNA profiles deposited in forensic DNA databases. The principal limitation of such comparative approach is that trace donors

  17. Quality improvement in basic histotechnology: the lean approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, David

    2016-01-01

    Lean is a comprehensive system of management based on the Toyota production system (TPS), encompassing all the activities of an organization. It focuses management activity on creating value for the end-user by continuously improving operational effectiveness and removing waste. Lean management creates a culture of continuous quality improvement with a strong emphasis on developing the problem-solving capability of staff using the scientific method (Deming's Plan, Do, Check, Act cycle). Lean management systems have been adopted by a number of histopathology departments throughout the world to simultaneously improve quality (reducing errors and shortening turnround times) and lower costs (by increasing efficiency). This article describes the key concepts that make up a lean management system, and how these concepts have been adapted from manufacturing industry and applied to histopathology using a case study of lean implementation and evidence from the literature. It discusses the benefits, limitations, and pitfalls encountered when implementing lean management systems.

  18. Improved grey-based approach for power demand forecasting

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LIN Jia-mu; LIU Dan

    2006-01-01

    Grey theory is a multidisciplinary and generic theory to cope with systems of poor or deficient information. We proposed in this paper an improved grey method (GM) to overcome the disadvantages of the general GM(1,1). In the improved GM(1,1), a new background value formula is deduced and Markov-chain sign estimation is imbedded into the residual modification model. We tested the efficiency and accuracy of our model by applying it to the power demand forecasting in Taiwan. Experimental results demonstrate the new method has obviously a higher prediction accuracy than the general model.

  19. A Critical Overview of Recent Approaches to Improved Thermoelectric Materials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sales, Brian C [ORNL

    2007-01-01

    Thermoelectric devices can convert heat into useful electricity with no moving parts. Considerable progress has been made in improving the efficiency of these devices over the past 15 years. The key ideas responsible for most of this progress will be examined using specific examples. Recent improvements in thermoelectric efficiency appear to be dominated by a reduction in the lattice thermal conductivity. This reduction is accomplished by the careful introduction of 0.1 to 5 nm sized "objects" that effectively scatter acoustic phonons without significantly affecting electronic transport. Future research directions will be discussed.

  20. Improving information extraction using a probability-based approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kim, S.; Ahmed, Saeema; Wallace, K.

    2007-01-01

    that these searches often prove unsuccessful. Searches can be improved if domain entities of interest, e.g., 'gas turbine; are explicitly associated with their types, i.e., gas turbine is a type of engine, thus reducing the ambiguity of referring to the entities using various different ways of expressing them...

  1. Hypothesis Generation in Quality Improvement Projects: Approaches for Exploratory Studies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Mast, J.; Bergman, M.

    2006-01-01

    In quality improvement projects - such as Six Sigma projects - an exploratory phase can be discerned, during which possible causes, influence factors or variation sources are identified. In a subsequent confirmatory phase the effects of these possible causes are experimentally verified. Whereas the

  2. Improvement of refuse collection in Kitwe: A participatory approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    B. Kazimbaya-Senkwe (Barbara); K.M. Sankwe; J. Frijns (Jos)

    1999-01-01

    textabstractThis project set out to define the refuse collection problem in Kitwe and to propose ways of improving the same. Through a household survey, interviews with relevant institutions and a physical survey of the town, it was established that the Kitwe City Council is not able to provide an a

  3. Improving Teacher Candidates' Knowledge of Phonological Awareness: A Multimedia Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kennedy, Michael J.; Driver, Melissa K.; Pullen, Paige C.; Ely, Emily; Cole, Mira T.

    2013-01-01

    Knowledge of phonological awareness (PA) and how to teach students to develop PA is an important component of teacher preparation given its role in learning to read. We believe multimedia can play a key role in improving how educators acquire, master, and prepare to implement evidence-based reading instruction in any nation. One multimedia-based…

  4. AN IMPROVED MULTIVARIATE LOSS FUNCTION APPROACH TO OPTIMIZATION

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yizhong MA; Fengyu ZHAO

    2004-01-01

    The basic purpose of a quality loss function is to evaluate a loss to customers in a quantitative manner. Although there are several multivariate loss functions that have been proposed and studied in the literature, it has room for improvement. A good multivariate loss function should represent an appropriate compromise in terms of both process economics and the correlation structure among various responses. More important, it should be easily understood and implemented in practice.According to this criterion, we first introduce a pragmatic dimensionless multivariate loss function proposed by Artiles-Leon, then we improve the multivariate loss function in two respects: one is making it suitable for all three types of quality characteristics; the other is considering correlation structure among the various responses, which makes the improved multivariate loss function more adequate in the real world. On the bases of these, an example from industrial practice is provided to compare our improved method with other methods, and last, some reviews are presented in conclusion.

  5. A Multi(ple)-Media Approach to Performance Improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamann, Rich; Nordenstam, Garry; Ziegler, Jody

    1998-01-01

    This case study describes a project to design a performance support system that incorporated an electronic performance tool, computer-based training, and paper-based deliverables that resulted in lower development costs and improved job performance. Highlights include audience analyses, cost analysis, creative resource allocation, and feedback…

  6. Improving Student Group Marketing Presentations: A Modified Pecha Kucha Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliver, Jason; Kowalczyk, Christine

    2013-01-01

    Student presentations can often seem like a formality rather than a lesson in representing oneself or group in a professional manner. To improve the quality of group presentations, the authors modified the popular presentation style of Pecha Kucha (20 slides, 20 seconds per slide) for marketing courses to help students prepare and deliver…

  7. Improving Student Group Marketing Presentations: A Modified Pecha Kucha Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliver, Jason; Kowalczyk, Christine

    2013-01-01

    Student presentations can often seem like a formality rather than a lesson in representing oneself or group in a professional manner. To improve the quality of group presentations, the authors modified the popular presentation style of Pecha Kucha (20 slides, 20 seconds per slide) for marketing courses to help students prepare and deliver…

  8. Quality Improvement in Virtual Higher Education: A Grounded Theory Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahdiuon, Rouhollah; Masoumi, Davoud; Farasatkhah, Maghsoud

    2017-01-01

    The article aims to explore the attributes of quality and quality improvement including the process and specific actions associated with these attributes--that contribute enhancing quality in Iranian Virtual Higher Education (VHE) institutions. A total of 16 interviews were conducted with experts and key actors in Iranian virtual higher education.…

  9. Improved calendar time approach for measuring long-run anomalies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anupam Dutta

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Although a large number of recent studies employ the buy-and-hold abnormal return (BHAR methodology and the calendar time portfolio approach to investigate the long-run anomalies, each of the methods is a subject to criticisms. In this paper, we show that a recently introduced calendar time methodology, known as Standardized Calendar Time Approach (SCTA,, controls well for heteroscedasticity problem which occurs in calendar time methodology due to varying portfolio compositions. In addition, we document that SCTA has higher power than the BHAR methodology and the Fama–French three-factor model while detecting the long-run abnormal stock returns. Moreover, when investigating the long-term performance of Canadian initial public offerings, we report that the market period (i.e. the hot and cold period markets does not have any significant impact on calendar time abnormal returns based on SCTA.

  10. Gap Analysis Approach for Construction Safety Program Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thanet Aksorn

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available To improve construction site safety, emphasis has been placed on the implementation of safety programs. In order to successfully gain from safety programs, factors that affect their improvement need to be studied. Sixteen critical success factors of safety programs were identified from safety literature, and these were validated by safety experts. This study was undertaken by surveying 70 respondents from medium- and large-scale construction projects. It explored the importance and the actual status of critical success factors (CSFs. Gap analysis was used to examine the differences between the importance of these CSFs and their actual status. This study found that the most critical problems characterized by the largest gaps were management support, appropriate supervision, sufficient resource allocation, teamwork, and effective enforcement. Raising these priority factors to satisfactory levels would lead to successful safety programs, thereby minimizing accidents.

  11. An improved multidisciplinary feasible method using DACE approximation approach

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Su Zijian; Xiao Renbin; Zhong Yifang

    2005-01-01

    Multidisciplinary feasible method (MDF) is conventional method to multidisciplinary optimization (MDO) and well-understood by users. It reduces the dimensions of the multidisciplinary optimization problem by using the design variables as independent optimization variables. However, at each iteration of the conventional optimization procedure,multidisciplinary analysis (MDA) is numerously performed that results in extreme expense and low optimization efficiency. The intrinsic weakness of MDF is due to the times that it loop fixed-point iterations in MDA, which drive us to improve MDF by building inexpensive approximations as surrogates for expensive MDA. An simple example is presented to demonstrate the usefulness of the improved MDF. Results show that a significant reduction in the number of multidisciplinary analysis required for optimization is obtained as compared with original MDF and the efficiency of optimization is increased.

  12. Information communication technology: new approach for rural cancer care improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maserat, Elham

    2008-01-01

    Cancer control aims to reduce the incidence, morbidity, and mortality of cancer and to improve the quality of life of cancer patients. For rural populations this presents particular problems. This article covers challenges of oncology care in rural areas and solutions via applying information communication technology with specialty telemedicine for overcoming problems in prevention, early diagnosis, treatment, and palliative care. In addition, telecommunications infrastructures and frameworks for implementation of telemedicine are described.

  13. Performance of Gannan Yak and Approaches for Improvement

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    王槐田

    2005-01-01

    At present, the yak population reached to 1.1 million in Gannan prefecture. Yak is dominant livestock in Gannan,and is the main source of herdsman income. In recent years, the population of Gannan yak continuously increased, but the performances such as body weight, dressing percentage and reproductivity are dropping.In order to improve quality, performance and economic benefits of yak production,it is very urgent to strengthen yak selective breeding.

  14. B ->PV Decays in QCD Improved Factorization Approach

    CERN Document Server

    Yang Mao Zhi; Yang, Mao-Zhi; Yang, Ya-Dong

    2000-01-01

    Motivated by recent CELO measurements and the progress of the theory of B decays, we investigate $B\\to P V(P=\\pi,K. V= K^{*},\\rho,\\omega)$ decay modes in the framework of QCD improved factorization. We find that all the measured branching ratios are well accommodated in the reasonable parameter space and predictions for the other decay modes are well below the experimental upper limits. We also have calculated CP asymmetries in these decay modes.

  15. A lean six sigma approach to improve municipal service processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Engelbert Zefaj

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available This research aims to identify the current state of process management for municipal subsidies and is proposing to improve the process by reducing motion, deadlines and excessive actions and to eliminate duplication of processes and overproduction. Time spent and process effi ciency is the subject tackled in this research. Several areas of action that affect the overall process as departments, regulations, time, experts, movements, materials and procedures have been explored. Lean six sigma/DMAIC model is used as an adequate mechanism for the implementation of this project which aims to improve the quality of service. The result of the research is not limited to only one specific process, the applied model in this study can be used to improve many processes in municipalities. Currently, in order to receive a fi nal response from municipal authorities for subsidies allocation, 41hr of process time, 160 hr of calendar time and 232 hr of wait time are needed. The process effi ciency is only 10%.

  16. Improvement of buccal delivery of morphine using the prodrug approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christrup, Lona Louring; Jørgensen, A.; Christensen, C.B.

    1997-01-01

    The feasibility of achieving buccal delivery of morphine using the prodrug approach was assessed by studies of bioactivation, in vitro permeation and in vivo absorption. The bioactivation of various morphine-3-esters was studied in human plasma and saliva. The in vitro permeation of morphine...... of 0.2. This discrepancy could however be explained by the enzymatic stability of the two esters in saliva, since it was found that morphine-3-propionate was more rapidly hydrolysed in saliva than was morphine-3-acetate. The study demonstrates that the buccal delivery of morphine can be markedly...

  17. A STATIONARY WAVELET TRANSFORM APPROACH FOR IMPROVED FINGERPRINT RECOGNITION SCHEME

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K.B.Vishnuvi

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Fingerprint recognition, a known biometrics for personal identification is used in securing confidential Data Contents. Fingerprint exhibits textured like patterns of whorls, loop etc in sector form which is then used for fingerprint matching. The existing method uses Gabor filter which does not provide much Robustness. In this Paper, a hybrid algorithm is overlaid in combination with SWT and PCA techniques for image denoising, thereby obtaining a visually sharper reconstructed inked fingerprint images. The Proposed matching approach proves more robust than existing techniques.

  18. Discovery of regulatory elements is improved by a discriminatory approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Valen, Eivind; Sandelin, Albin; Winther, Ole;

    2009-01-01

    A major goal in post-genome biology is the complete mapping of the gene regulatory networks for every organism. Identification of regulatory elements is a prerequisite for realizing this ambitious goal. A common problem is finding regulatory patterns in promoters of a group of co-expressed genes...... present a new computational method for identifying transcription factor binding sites in promoters using a discriminatory approach with a large negative set encompassing a significant sample of the promoters from the relevant genome. The sequences are described by a probabilistic model and the most...

  19. Integrated approach to improving local CD uniformity in EUV patterning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Andrew; Hermans, Jan; Tran, Timothy; Viatkina, Katja; Liang, Chen-Wei; Ward, Brandon; Chuang, Steven; Yu, Jengyi; Harm, Greg; Vandereyken, Jelle; Rio, David; Kubis, Michael; Tan, Samantha; Dusa, Mircea; Singhal, Akhil; van Schravendijk, Bart; Dixit, Girish; Shamma, Nader

    2017-03-01

    Extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography is crucial to enabling technology scaling in pitch and critical dimension (CD). Currently, one of the key challenges of introducing EUV lithography to high volume manufacturing (HVM) is throughput, which requires high source power and high sensitivity chemically amplified photoresists. Important limiters of high sensitivity chemically amplified resists (CAR) are the effects of photon shot noise and resist blur on the number of photons received and of photoacids generated per feature, especially at the pitches required for 7 nm and 5 nm advanced technology nodes. These stochastic effects are reflected in via structures as hole-to-hole CD variation or local CD uniformity (LCDU). Here, we demonstrate a synergy of film stack deposition, EUV lithography, and plasma etch techniques to improve LCDU, which allows the use of high sensitivity resists required for the introduction of EUV HVM. Thus, to improve LCDU to a level required by 5 nm node and beyond, film stack deposition, EUV lithography, and plasma etch processes were combined and co-optimized to enhance LCDU reduction from synergies. Test wafers were created by depositing a pattern transfer stack on a substrate representative of a 5 nm node target layer. The pattern transfer stack consisted of an atomically smooth adhesion layer and two hardmasks and was deposited using the Lam VECTOR PECVD product family. These layers were designed to mitigate hole roughness, absorb out-of-band radiation, and provide additional outlets for etch to improve LCDU and control hole CD. These wafers were then exposed through an ASML NXE3350B EUV scanner using a variety of advanced positive tone EUV CAR. They were finally etched to the target substrate using Lam Flex dielectric etch and Kiyo conductor etch systems. Metrology methodologies to assess dimensional metrics as well as chip performance and defectivity were investigated to enable repeatable patterning process development. Illumination

  20. Systems pharmacology modeling: an approach to improving drug safety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bai, Jane P F; Fontana, Robert J; Price, Nathan D; Sangar, Vineet

    2014-01-01

    Advances in systems biology in conjunction with the expansion in knowledge of drug effects and diseases present an unprecedented opportunity to extend traditional pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic modeling/analysis to conduct systems pharmacology modeling. Many drugs that cause liver injury and myopathies have been studied extensively. Mitochondrion-centric systems pharmacology modeling is important since drug toxicity across a large number of pharmacological classes converges to mitochondrial injury and death. Approaches to systems pharmacology modeling of drug effects need to consider drug exposure, organelle and cellular phenotypes across all key cell types of human organs, organ-specific clinical biomarkers/phenotypes, gene-drug interaction and immune responses. Systems modeling approaches, that leverage the knowledge base constructed from curating a selected list of drugs across a wide range of pharmacological classes, will provide a critically needed blueprint for making informed decisions to reduce the rate of attrition for drugs in development and increase the number of drugs with an acceptable benefit/risk ratio.

  1. Genomics, Physiology, and Molecular Breeding Approaches for Improving Salt Tolerance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ismail, Abdelbagi M; Horie, Tomoaki

    2017-02-22

    Salt stress reduces land and water productivity and contributes to poverty and food insecurity. Increased salinization caused by human practices and climate change is progressively reducing agriculture productivity despite escalating calls for more food. Plant responses to salt stress are fairly well understood, involving numerous critical processes that are each controlled by multiple genes. Knowledge of the critical mechanisms controlling salt uptake and exclusion from functioning tissues, signaling of salt stress, and the arsenal of protective metabolites is advancing. However, little progress has been made in developing salt-tolerant varieties of crop species using standard (but slow) breeding approaches. The genetic diversity available within cultivated crops and their wild relatives provides rich sources for trait and gene discovery that has yet to be sufficiently utilized. Transforming this knowledge into modern approaches using genomics and molecular tools for precision breeding will accelerate the development of tolerant cultivars and help sustain food production. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Plant Biology Volume 68 is April 29, 2017. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.

  2. A Bayesian approach to image expansion for improved definition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schultz, R R; Stevenson, R L

    1994-01-01

    Accurate image expansion is important in many areas of image analysis. Common methods of expansion, such as linear and spline techniques, tend to smooth the image data at edge regions. This paper introduces a method for nonlinear image expansion which preserves the discontinuities of the original image, producing an expanded image with improved definition. The maximum a posteriori (MAP) estimation techniques that are proposed for noise-free and noisy images result in the optimization of convex functionals. The expanded images produced from these methods will be shown to be aesthetically and quantitatively superior to images expanded by the standard methods of replication, linear interpolation, and cubic B-spline expansion.

  3. Exploiting the Errors: A Simple Approach for Improved Volatility Forecasting

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bollerslev, Tim; Patton, Andrew J.; Quaedvlieg, Rogier

    with the (estimated) degree of measurement error, the models exhibit stronger persistence, and in turn generate more responsive forecasts, when the measurement error is relatively low. Implementing the new class of models for the S&P500 equity index and the individual constituents of the Dow Jones Industrial Average......, we document significant improvements in the accuracy of the resulting forecasts compared to the forecasts from some of the most popular existing models that implicitly ignore the temporal variation in the magnitude of the realized volatility measurement errors....

  4. Performance improvements in longwall mining using a total quality approach

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Singh, R.N.; Porter, I.; Vatovec, W.R. [University of Wollongong, Wollongong, NSW (Australia). Dept. of Civil Mining and Environmental Engineering

    1998-06-01

    The paper briefly describes the production and productivity trends in coal mining in Australia. It is considered that the greatest impediment in achieving full potential from a mechanised longwall face in Australia is the lack of reliability of face equipment and inadequate gate roadways development rates resulting in discontinuity of longwall operations. In the quest for increasing roadway development rates, a new generation of development machinery are being increasingly used. Experience has shown that the application of high-tech equipment alone is unable to achieve desired development rates. Application of Total Quality Management Principles is necessary to improve the organisational behaviour of the mine and therefore, the development rates.

  5. Advanced approaches to the improving of three-cone rock bits manufacturing method

    OpenAIRE

    Яким, Роман; Петрина, Юрій; Яким, Ігор

    2013-01-01

    The complex approach to the improvement of three-cone rock bits manufacturing method, that includes the requirements increase for the chemical composition of rock bit steels, and also the advanced approaches to the improvement of technological processes quality and efficiency are offered.

  6. An improved approach of register allocation via graph coloring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Lei; Shi, Ce

    2005-03-01

    Register allocation is an important part of optimizing compiler. The algorithm of register allocation via graph coloring is implemented by Chaitin and his colleagues firstly and improved by Briggs and others. By abstracting register allocation to graph coloring, the allocation process is simplified. As the physical register number is limited, coloring of the interference graph can"t succeed for every node. The uncolored nodes must be spilled. There is an assumption that almost all the allocation method obeys: when a register is allocated to a variable v, it can"t be used by others before v quit even if v is not used for a long time. This may causes a waste of register resource. The authors relax this restriction under certain conditions and make some improvement. In this method, one register can be mapped to two or more interfered "living" live ranges at the same time if they satisfy some requirements. An operation named merge is defined which can arrange two interfered nodes occupy the same register with some cost. Thus, the resource of register can be used more effectively and the cost of memory access can be reduced greatly.

  7. A novel approach to improving writing skills: ClimateSnack

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reeve, Mathew

    2014-05-01

    Writing is a huge part of any research career. We can think of writing as a research tool we find in any research laboratory. Much like any research tool, we have to understand how to calibrate, adjust and apply it in order to achieve the very best experimental outcomes. We can learn how to use this tool with advice from writing workshops, online writing courses, books and so on. Unfortunately, when it comes to working with this tool, we often have to do it alone. But, like in any laboratory, the most rewarding way to learn and to achieve the best results is to interact with others. Through this interaction, we can improve our writing and remain motivated. ClimateSnack aims to help early career scientists understand how they can use writing as an effective research tool. We encourage the formation of writing groups at different universities and institutes. Members write short popular science articles and read them aloud at group meetings. The group uses knowledge from different learning resources to discuss the articles and give feedback. The author then improves their writing further before publishing on the ClimateSnack website. If early-career scientists can successfully increase their control of writing, they will more likely write memorable high-impact scientific articles, and confidently communicate their science via varied media to varied audiences.

  8. Client Oriented Approach for Assisting Business Improvement Decision Making

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diana Pitic

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available An important aspect of the corporate responsibility towards the customers is to ensure the correct value transfer, through the quality and price of the product/service. By using customer satisfaction in order to measure value and the quality provided to customers, this paper proposes a methodology of assisting management decisions in improving business processes. The proposed techniques and tools, specific to quality management, are used for determining the processes which need to be improved or innovated in order to increase customer satisfaction. Thus, the methodology contributes to the creation of a decision-making framework for an efficient orientation of the resources for maximising the generated value and minimising the costs. In order to illustrate its application, we present a study based on the responses regarding satisfaction elements of 679 companies, the customers of a distribution chain in the field of interior fittings. The research highlights the practical method of determining the priority processes for increasing customer satisfaction, taking into account the satisfaction targets and the nature of the necessary actions in order to maximize the created value and to minimize the costs of these processes.

  9. APPROACH TO IMPROVEMENT OF ROBOT TRAJECTORY ACCURACY BY DYNAMIC COMPENSATION

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Wang Gang; Ren Guoli; Yan Xiang'an; Wang Guodong

    2004-01-01

    Some dynamic factors, such as inertial forces and friction, may affect the robot trajectory accuracy. But these effects are not taken into account in robot motion control schemes. Dynamic control methods, on the other hand, require the dynamic model of robot and the implementation of new type controller. A method to improve robot trajectory accuracy by dynamic compensation in robot motion control system is proposed. The dynamic compensation is applied as an additional velocity feedforward and a multilayer neural network is employed to realize the robot inverse dynamics. The complicated dynamic parameter identification problem becomes a learning process of neural network connecting weights under supervision. The finite Fourier series is used to activate each actuator of robot joints for obtaining training samples. Robot control system, consisting of an industrial computer and a digital motion controller, is implemented. The system is of open architecture with velocity feedforward function. The proposed method is not model-based and combines the advantages of close-loop position control and computed torque control. Experimental results have shown that the method is validatities to improve the robot trajectory accuracy.

  10. Improving operational anodising process performance using simulation approach

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liong, Choong-Yeun, E-mail: lg@ukm.edu.my; Ghazali, Syarah Syahidah, E-mail: syarah@gapps.kptm.edu.my [School of Mathematical Sciences, Faculty of Science and Technology, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600 UKM Bangi, Selangor DE (Malaysia)

    2015-10-22

    The use of aluminium is very widespread, especially in transportation, electrical and electronics, architectural, automotive and engineering applications sectors. Therefore, the anodizing process is an important process for aluminium in order to make the aluminium durable, attractive and weather resistant. This research is focused on the anodizing process operations in manufacturing and supplying of aluminium extrusion. The data required for the development of the model is collected from the observations and interviews conducted in the study. To study the current system, the processes involved in the anodizing process are modeled by using Arena 14.5 simulation software. Those processes consist of five main processes, namely the degreasing process, the etching process, the desmut process, the anodizing process, the sealing process and 16 other processes. The results obtained were analyzed to identify the problems or bottlenecks that occurred and to propose improvement methods that can be implemented on the original model. Based on the comparisons that have been done between the improvement methods, the productivity could be increased by reallocating the workers and reducing loading time.

  11. Improving operational anodising process performance using simulation approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liong, Choong-Yeun; Ghazali, Syarah Syahidah

    2015-10-01

    The use of aluminium is very widespread, especially in transportation, electrical and electronics, architectural, automotive and engineering applications sectors. Therefore, the anodizing process is an important process for aluminium in order to make the aluminium durable, attractive and weather resistant. This research is focused on the anodizing process operations in manufacturing and supplying of aluminium extrusion. The data required for the development of the model is collected from the observations and interviews conducted in the study. To study the current system, the processes involved in the anodizing process are modeled by using Arena 14.5 simulation software. Those processes consist of five main processes, namely the degreasing process, the etching process, the desmut process, the anodizing process, the sealing process and 16 other processes. The results obtained were analyzed to identify the problems or bottlenecks that occurred and to propose improvement methods that can be implemented on the original model. Based on the comparisons that have been done between the improvement methods, the productivity could be increased by reallocating the workers and reducing loading time.

  12. An Improved Face Recognition Technique Based on Modular LPCA Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathu S.S. Kumar

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement: A face identification algorithm based on modular localized variation by Eigen Subspace technique, also called modular localized principal component analysis, is presented in this study. Approach: The face imagery was partitioned into smaller sub-divisions from a predefined neighborhood and they were ultimately fused to acquire many sets of features. Since a few of the normal facial features of an individual do not differ even when the pose and illumination may differ, the proposed method manages these variations. Results: The proposed feature selection module has significantly, enhanced the identification precision using standard face databases when compared to conservative and modular PCA techniques. Conclusion: The proposed algorithm, when related with conservative PCA algorithm and modular PCA, has enhanced recognition accuracy for face imagery with illumination, expression and pose variations.

  13. Innovative biological approaches for monitoring and improving water quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanja eAracic

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Water quality is largely influenced by the abundance and diversity of indigenous microbes present within an aquatic environment. Physical, chemical and biological contaminants from anthropogenic activities can accumulate in aquatic systems causing detrimental ecological consequences. Approaches exploiting microbial processes are now being utilized for the detection, and removal or reduction of contaminants. Contaminants can be identified and quantified in situ using microbial whole-cell biosensors, negating the need for water samples to be tested off-site. Similarly, the innate biodegradative processes can be enhanced through manipulation of the composition and/or function of the indigenous microbial communities present within the contaminated environments. Biological contaminants, such as detrimental/pathogenic bacteria, can be specifically targeted and reduced in number using bacteriophages. This mini-review discusses the potential application of whole-cell microbial biosensors for the detection of contaminants, the exploitation of microbial biodegradative processes for environmental restoration and the manipulation of microbial communities using phages.

  14. Improving product development practice: An action-research based approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Harmsen, Hanne

    In studies of new product development it has often been concluded that to a large extent new product suc-cess is tunder the influence of companies and long lists of direct norma-tive guide-lines have been formulated. Nevertheless descriptive studi that deve-lopment practice is still far from the ...... these change processes, and it is particularly the advantages and disadvantages of this - traditionally not very popular - research approach that is in focus in this paper.......In studies of new product development it has often been concluded that to a large extent new product suc-cess is tunder the influence of companies and long lists of direct norma-tive guide-lines have been formulated. Nevertheless descriptive studi that deve-lopment practice is still far from...

  15. W Production in an Improved Parton-Shower Approach

    CERN Document Server

    Miu, G; Miu, Gabriela; Sjostrand, Torbjorn

    1999-01-01

    In the description of the production properties of gauge bosons (W+/W-, Z0, gamma) at colliders, the lowest-order graph normally is not sufficient. The contributions of higher orders can be introduced either by an explicit order-by-order matrix-element calculation, by a resummation procedure or by a parton-shower algorithm. Each approach has its advantages and disadvantages. We here introduce a method that allows the parton-shower algorithm to be augmented by higher-order information, thereby offering an economical route to a description of all event properties. It is tested by comparing with the pT spectrum of W bosons at the Tevatron.

  16. An Improved Approach to the PageRank Problems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yue Xie

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available We introduce a partition of the web pages particularly suited to the PageRank problems in which the web link graph has a nested block structure. Based on the partition of the web pages, dangling nodes, common nodes, and general nodes, the hyperlink matrix can be reordered to be a more simple block structure. Then based on the parallel computation method, we propose an algorithm for the PageRank problems. In this algorithm, the dimension of the linear system becomes smaller, and the vector for general nodes in each block can be calculated separately in every iteration. Numerical experiments show that this approach speeds up the computation of PageRank.

  17. A new CAD approach for improving efficacy of cancer screening

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Bin; Qian, Wei; Li, Lihua; Pu, Jiantao; Kang, Yan; Lure, Fleming; Tan, Maxine; Qiu, Yuchen

    2015-03-01

    Since performance and clinical utility of current computer-aided detection (CAD) schemes of detecting and classifying soft tissue lesions (e.g., breast masses and lung nodules) is not satisfactory, many researchers in CAD field call for new CAD research ideas and approaches. The purpose of presenting this opinion paper is to share our vision and stimulate more discussions of how to overcome or compensate the limitation of current lesion-detection based CAD schemes in the CAD research community. Since based on our observation that analyzing global image information plays an important role in radiologists' decision making, we hypothesized that using the targeted quantitative image features computed from global images could also provide highly discriminatory power, which are supplementary to the lesion-based information. To test our hypothesis, we recently performed a number of independent studies. Based on our published preliminary study results, we demonstrated that global mammographic image features and background parenchymal enhancement of breast MR images carried useful information to (1) predict near-term breast cancer risk based on negative screening mammograms, (2) distinguish between true- and false-positive recalls in mammography screening examinations, and (3) classify between malignant and benign breast MR examinations. The global case-based CAD scheme only warns a risk level of the cases without cueing a large number of false-positive lesions. It can also be applied to guide lesion-based CAD cueing to reduce false-positives but enhance clinically relevant true-positive cueing. However, before such a new CAD approach is clinically acceptable, more work is needed to optimize not only the scheme performance but also how to integrate with lesion-based CAD schemes in the clinical practice.

  18. Novel chip coating approaches to improve white LED technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartmann, Paul; Schweighart, Marko; Sommer, Christian; Wenzl, Franz-P.; Zinterl, Ernst; Hoschopf, Hans; Pachler, Peter; Tasch, Stefan

    2008-02-01

    Key market requirements for white LEDs, especially in the general lighting and automotive headlamp segments call for improved concepts and performance of white LEDs based on phosphor conversion. Major challenges are small emission areas, highest possible intensities, long-term color stability, and spatial homogeneity of color coordinates. On the other hand, the increasingly high radiation power of the blue LEDs poses problems for all involved materials. Various thick film coating technologies are widely used for applying the color conversion layer to the semiconductor chip. We present novel concepts based on Silicate phosphors with high performance in terms of spatial homogeneity of the emission and variability of the color temperature. Numerical calculation of the optical properties with the help of state-of-the-art simulation tools was used as a basis for the practical optimization of the layer geometries.

  19. CAD/CAM approach to improving industry productivity gathers momentum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fulton, R. E.

    1982-01-01

    Recent results and planning for the NASA/industry Integrated Programs for Aerospace-Vehicle Design (IPAD) program for improving productivity with CAD/CAM methods are outlined. The industrial group work is being mainly done by Boeing, and progress has been made in defining the designer work environment, developing requirements and a preliminary design for a future CAD/CAM system, and developing CAD/CAM technology. The work environment was defined by conducting a detailed study of a reference design process, and key software elements for a CAD/CAM system have been defined, specifically for interactive design or experiment control processes. Further work is proceeding on executive, data management, geometry and graphics, and general utility software, and dynamic aspects of the programs being developed are outlined

  20. Improving enterprise system support - a case-based approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wognum, P.M.; Krabbendam, J.J.; Buhl, Henrik

    2004-01-01

    of a comprehensive reference framework. After this step a tool has been developed to support a consultant in assessing the maturity of a company to start an enterprise system implementation project. The knowledge, used directly in the tool, makes it possible to suggest improvement actions sensitive to the situation......Many organisations have implemented or are implementing large enterprise systems, like ERP and PDM, for integrating their business functions and streamlining the flow of information. Implementing such systems is very complex, however. In many companies the results envisioned have not or have only...... partly been achieved. In the literature many explanations can be found for insufficient or failing implementation efforts. A large part of the problems encountered appears to be human and organisational in nature, while it has been stressed that implementing an enterprise system requires and involves...

  1. Improving EFL argumentative writing: A dialogic critical thinking approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mansoor Fahim

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available ELT has traditionally practiced the teaching of argumentative writing through conventional writing instruction and as such has disregarded critical thinking, a capability essential to argumentative writing. The present study, therefore, aimed at enhancing EFL argumentative writing through the coupling of writing instruction and dialogic critical thinking. To this aim, 48 Iranian EFL learners, selected through cluster sampling, were randomly assigned to either the experimental group―receiving writing instruction in conjunction with doing tasks involving dialogic critical thinking―or the control group, only receiving writing instruction. To compare the writing performances of the two groups, a pretest prior to the treatment and a posttest after the treatment were administered, both in the form of in-class 180-word four-paragraph argumentative essays within a time limit of 30 minutes. While both groups made statistically significant improvements in writing argumentatively, the results indicated that the coalescence of writing instruction and dialogic critical thinking led to superior performances.

  2. Wind turbine power tracking using an improved multimodel quadratic approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khezami, Nadhira; Benhadj Braiek, Naceur; Guillaud, Xavier

    2010-07-01

    In this paper, an improved multimodel optimal quadratic control structure for variable speed, pitch regulated wind turbines (operating at high wind speeds) is proposed in order to integrate high levels of wind power to actively provide a primary reserve for frequency control. On the basis of the nonlinear model of the studied plant, and taking into account the wind speed fluctuations, and the electrical power variation, a multimodel linear description is derived for the wind turbine, and is used for the synthesis of an optimal control law involving a state feedback, an integral action and an output reference model. This new control structure allows a rapid transition of the wind turbine generated power between different desired set values. This electrical power tracking is ensured with a high-performance behavior for all other state variables: turbine and generator rotational speeds and mechanical shaft torque; and smooth and adequate evolution of the control variables. 2010 ISA. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. New Biometric Approaches for Improved Person Identification Using Facial Detection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V.K. NARENDIRA KUMAR

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Biometrics is measurable characteristics specific to an individual. Face detection has diverse applications especially as an identification solution which can meet the crying needs in security areas. While traditionally 2D images of faces have been used, 3D scans that contain both 3D data and registered color are becoming easier to acquire. Before 3D face images can be used to identify an individual, they require some form of initial alignment information, typically based on facial feature locations. We follow this by a discussion of the algorithms performance when constrained to frontal images and an analysis of its performance on a more complex dataset with significant head pose variation using 3D face data for detection provides a promising route to improved performance.

  4. Enhanced electrocoagulation: New approaches to improve the electrochemical process (Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos E. Barrera-Díaz

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Electrocoagulation is a promising technology for the removal of colloids from different types of wastewater and it has also demonstrated good efficiencies for the breaking-up of emulsions. It consists of the dissolution ofaluminum or iron anodes, promoting the formation of coagulant reagents in wastewater that helps to coagulate pollutants and the formation of bubbles that favors the mixing (electroflocculation and the removal of suspended solids by flotation (electroflotation. During the recent years, the combination of this technology with other treatment technologies has become a hot topic looking for a synergistic improvement in the efficiencies. This work aims to review some of the more recent works regarding this topic, in particular the combination of electrocoagulation withozonation, adsorption and ultrasound irradiation.

  5. Production layout improvement in emergency services: a participatory approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zanatta, Mateus; Amaral, Fernando Gonçalves

    2012-01-01

    Volunteer fire department is a service that responds emergency situations in places where there are no military emergency services. These services need to respond quickly, because time is often responsible for the operation success besides work environment and setup time interfere with the prompt response to these calls and care efficiency. The layout design is one factor that interferes with the quick setup. In this case, the spaces arrangement can result in excessive or unnecessary movements; also the equipment provision may hinder the selection and collection of these or even create movement barriers for the workers. This work created a new layout for the emergency assistance service, considering the human factors related to work through the task analysis and workers participation on the alternatives of improvement. The results showed an alternate layout with corridors and minimization of unusable sites, allowing greater flexibility and new possibilities of requirements.

  6. Managing congenital hyperinsulinism: improving outcomes with a multidisciplinary approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ackermann AM

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Amanda M Ackermann, Andrew A Palladino Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA, USA Abstract: Congenital hyperinsulinism (CHI is the most common cause of persistent hypoglycemia in pediatric patients and is associated with significant risk of hypoglycemic seizures and developmental delays. CHI results from mutations in at least nine genes that play a role in regulating beta-cell insulin secretion. Thus, patients with CHI have dysregulated insulin secretion that is unresponsive to blood glucose level. Each different genetic etiology of CHI is associated with particular clinical characteristics that affect management decisions. Given the broad phenotypic spectrum and relatively rare prevalence of CHI, it is important that patients with CHI be evaluated by clinicians experienced with CHI and the multiple subspecialty services that are necessary for the management of the disorder. In this review, we summarize the pathophysiology and genetic causes of CHI and then focus primarily on the most common genetic cause (mutations in the ATP-gated potassium [KATP] channel for further discussion of diagnosis, medical and surgical management, and potential acute and chronic complications. We provide insight from relevant published studies and reports, in addition to anecdotal information from our center’s clinical experience in caring for over 400 patients with CHI. Careful assessment of each patient’s individual pathophysiology is necessary to determine the appropriate treatment regimen, and continued close follow-up and monitoring of disease- and treatment-related complications are essential. Although significant improvements have been made in the past several years with regard to diagnosis and management, given the continued high morbidity rate in patients with CHI, improved diagnostic techniques and new therapeutic options would be welcomed. Keywords: hypoglycemia, hyperinsulinism, beta

  7. Improving the accuracy of fingerprinting system using multibiometric approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Safa M. AL-Taie

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Biometric technology is a science that used to verify or identify the individual based on physical and/or behavioral traits. Although biometric systems are considered more secure than other traditional methods such as password, or key, they also have many limitations such as noisy image, or spoof attack. One of the solutions to overcome these limitations, is by applying a multibiometric system. Multibiometric system has a significant effect in improving the performance of both security and accuracy of the system. It also can alleviate the spoof attacks and reduce the fail to enroll error. A multi-sample is one implementations of the multibiometric systems. In this study, a new algorithm is suggested to provide a second chance for the genuine user who is rejected, to compare his/her provided finger with the other samples of the same finger. Multisampling fingerprint is used to implement this new algorithm. The algorithm is activated when the match score of the user is not equal to a threshold but close to it, then the system provides another chance to compare the finger with another sample of the same trait. Using multi-sample biometric system improved the performance of the system by reducing the False Reject Rate (FRR. Applying the original matching algorithm on the presented database produced 3 genuine users, and 5 imposters for the same fingerprint. While after implementing the suggested condition, the system performance is enhanced by producing 6 genuine users, and 2 imposters for the same fingerprint. This work was built and executed depending on a previous Matlab code presented by Zhi Li Wu. Thresholds and Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC curves computed before and after implementing the suggested multibiometric algorithm. Both ROC curves compared. A final decision and recommendations are provided depending on the results obtained from this project.

  8. Sickle cell retinopathy: improving care with a multidisciplinary approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Menaa F

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Farid Menaa,1,2 Barkat Ali Khan,3 Bushra Uzair,4 Abder Menaa2 1Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Nanomedicine, California Innovations Corporation, San Diego, CA, USA; 2Departments of Clinical Medicine and Laser Therapy, Centre Médical des Guittières, Saint-Philbert-de-Grand-Lieu, Loire-Atlantique, France; 3Faculty of Pharmacy and Alternative Medicine, The Islamia University of Bahawalpur, Bahawalpur, 4Department of Bioinformatics and Biotechnology, International Islamic University, Islamabad, Pakistan Abstract: Sickle cell retinopathy (SCR is the most representative ophthalmologic complication of sickle cell disease (SCD, a hemoglobinopathy affecting both adults and children. SCR presents a wide spectrum of manifestations and may even lead to irreversible vision loss if not properly diagnosed and treated at the earliest. Over the past decade, multidisciplinary research developments have focused upon systemic, genetic, and ocular risk factors of SCR, enabling the clinician to better diagnose and manage these patients. In addition, newer imaging and testing modalities, such as spectral domain-optical coherence tomography angiography, have resulted in the detection of subclinical retinopathy related to SCD. Innovative therapy includes intravitreal injection of an anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (eg, Lucentis® [ranibizumab] or Eylea® [aflibercept] which appears comparatively safe and efficient, and may be combined with laser photocoagulation (LPC for proliferative SCR. The effect of LPC alone does not significantly lead to the regression of advanced SCR, although it helps in avoiding hemorrhage and sight loss. This comprehensive article is based on 10-years retrospective (2007–2017 studies. It aims to present advances and recommendations in SCR theranostics while pointing out the requirement of combinatorial approaches for better management of SCR patients. To reach this goal, we identified and analyzed randomized original and

  9. An improved approach for process monitoring in laser material processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    König, Hans-Georg; Pütsch, Oliver; Stollenwerk, Jochen; Loosen, Peter

    2016-04-01

    Process monitoring is used in many different laser material processes due to the demand for reliable and stable processes. Among different methods, on-axis process monitoring offers multiple advantages. To observe a laser material process it is unavoidable to choose a wavelength for observation that is different to the one used for material processing, otherwise the light of the processing laser would outshine the picture of the process. By choosing a different wavelength, lateral chromatic aberration occurs in not chromatically corrected optical systems with optical scanning units and f-Theta lenses. These aberrations lead to a truncated image of the process on the camera or the pyrometer, respectively. This is the reason for adulterated measurements and non-satisfying images of the process. A new approach for solving the problem of field dependent lateral chromatic aberration in process monitoring is presented. Therefore, the scanner-based optical system is reproduced in a simulation environment, to predict the occurring lateral chromatic aberrations. In addition, a second deflecting system is integrated into the system. By using simulation, a predictive control is designed that uses the additional deflecting system to introduce reverse lateral deviations in order to compensate the lateral effect of chromatic aberration. This paper illustrates the concept and the implementation of the predictive control, which is used to eliminate lateral chromatic aberrations in process monitoring, the simulation on which the system is based the optical system as well as the control concept.

  10. Improving the Held and Karp Approach with Constraint Programming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benchimol, Pascal; Régin, Jean-Charles; Rousseau, Louis-Martin; Rueher, Michel; van Hoeve, Willem-Jan

    Held and Karp have proposed, in the early 1970s, a relaxation for the Traveling Salesman Problem (TSP) as well as a branch-and-bound procedure that can solve small to modest-size instances to optimality [4, 5]. It has been shown that the Held-Karp relaxation produces very tight bounds in practice, and this relaxation is therefore applied in TSP solvers such as Concorde [1]. In this short paper we show that the Held-Karp approach can benefit from well-known techniques in Constraint Programming (CP) such as domain filtering and constraint propagation. Namely, we show that filtering algorithms developed for the weighted spanning tree constraint [3, 8] can be adapted to the context of the Held and Karp procedure. In addition to the adaptation of existing algorithms, we introduce a special-purpose filtering algorithm based on the underlying mechanisms used in Prim's algorithm [7]. Finally, we explored two different branching schemes to close the integrality gap. Our initial experimental results indicate that the addition of the CP techniques to the Held-Karp method can be very effective.

  11. An approach to improve Romanian geological repository planning

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Andrei, Veronica [Romanian Association for Nuclear Energy, Bucharest-Magurele (Romania); Prisecaru, Ilie [University Politehnica of Bucharest, Bucharest (Romania)

    2016-04-15

    International standards recommend typical phases to be included within any national program for the development of a geological repository dedicated to disposal of the high level radioactive wastes generated in countries using nuclear power. However, these are not universally applicable and the content of each of these phases may need to be adapted for each national situation and regulatory and institutional framework. Several national geological repository programs have faced failures in schedules and have revised their programs to consider an adapted phased management approach. The authors have observed that in the case of those countries in the early phases of a geological repository program where boundary conditions have not been fully defined, international recommendations for handling delays/failures in the national program might not immediately help. This paper considers a case study of the influences of the national context risks on the current planning schedule of the Romanian national geological repository. It proposes an optimum solution for an integrated response to any significant adverse impact arising from these risks, enabling sustainable program planning.

  12. Improving operating room turnover time: a systems based approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhatt, Ankeet S; Carlson, Grant W; Deckers, Peter J

    2014-12-01

    Operating room (OR) turnover time (TT) has a broad and significant impact on hospital administrators, providers, staff and patients. Our objective was to identify current problems in TT management and implement a consistent, reproducible process to reduce average TT and process variability. Initial observations of TT were made to document the existing process at a 511 bed, 24 OR, academic medical center. Three control groups, including one consisting of Orthopedic and Vascular Surgery, were used to limit potential confounders such as case acuity/duration and equipment needs. A redesigned process based on observed issues, focusing on a horizontally structured, systems-based approach has three major interventions: developing consistent criteria for OR readiness, utilizing parallel processing for patient and room readiness, and enhancing perioperative communication. Process redesign was implemented in Orthopedics and Vascular Surgery. Comparisons of mean and standard deviation of TT were made using an independent 2-tailed t-test. Using all surgical specialties as controls (n = 237), mean TT (hh:mm:ss) was reduced by 0:20:48 min (95 % CI, 0:10:46-0:30:50), from 0:44:23 to 0:23:25, a 46.9 % reduction. Standard deviation of TT was reduced by 0:10:32 min, from 0:16:24 to 0:05:52 and frequency of TT≥30 min was reduced from 72.5to 11.7 %. P systems-based focus should drive OR TT design.

  13. Developing a customer-driven approach to quality improvement systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Owad, W P

    1993-01-01

    The development of a DCP in the manner presented previously has allowed for a consistent definition of customer needs and expectations within a pharmacy service. By applying this approach it has allowed the department to address the controversies associated with the identification of key customers and has also allowed a balance to be achieved between internal and external forces. From our analysis it is clear that the pharmacy department has a critical role in establishing a customer service philosophy that is key to the overall success of the institution's quality goal. It is also clear that pharmacy services cannot truly be developed without a customer service philosophy central to their design and implementation. In an era where drug expenditures represent an ever-increasing portion of corporate budgets, the pharmacy's ability to deliver goods and services that are customer and quality focused will be critical to organizational survival. The time has come to put ego aside and critically analyze whether or not a quality service is being delivered that meets a true customer need.

  14. New approaches for improving energy efficiency in the Brazilian industry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paulo Henrique de Mello Santana

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The Brazilian government has been promoting energy efficiency measures for industry since the eighties but with very limited returns, as shown in this paper. The governments of some other countries dedicated much more effort and funds for this area and reached excellent results. The institutional arrangements and types of programmes adopted in these countries are briefly evaluated in the paper and provide valuable insights for several proposals put forward here to make more effective the Brazilian government actions directed to overcome market barriers and improve energy efficiency in the local industry. The proposed measures include the creation of Industrial Assessment Centres and an executive agency charged with the coordination of all energy efficiency programmes run by the Federal government. A large share of the Brazilian industry energy consumption comes from energy-intensive industrial branches. According to a recent survey, most of them have substantial energy conservation potentials. To materialize a fair amount of them, voluntary targets concerning energy efficiency gains should start to be negotiated between the Government and associations representing these industrial branches. Credit facilities and tax exemptions for energy-efficient equipment’s should be provided to stimulate the interest of the entrepreneurs and the setting-up of bolder targets.

  15. Innovative approaches to improve bulk heterojunction organic photovoltaic device performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Ye

    In this thesis we studied the electrical properties of bulk heterojunction organic photovoltaic (OPV) devices fabricated using a variety of conjugated polymers, including regioregular P3HT, regiorandom P3HT, MEH-PPV and Mercedes, and several fullerene derivatives including [C61]PCBM, [C71]PCBM, bis-PCBM, Jalapeno and Habanero. We first optimized the fabrication recipe for P3HT/PCBM devices to yield a power conversion efficiency ˜3.5%, which is comparable to the reported state-of-the-art P3HT/PCBM device performance. We then fabricated OPV devices using alternative high LUMO fullerenes and a narrow bandgap/deep HOMO polymer to enhance OPV device performance and studied the electrical properties of these devices. Devices fabricated using P3HT/Jalapeno demonstrate a high efficiency ˜5%. Finally, we discovered an innovative spin-related method, which can potentially compliment the use of alternative donor/acceptor materials, to enhance OPV device performance. We doped the spin ½ radial Galvinoxyl into P3HT/PCBM devices and improved efficiency from 3.5% to 4%. Our experimental results suggest that the existence of Galvinoxyl at the P3HT/PCBM interface facilitates the exciton/polaron dissociation process, while Galvinoxyl molecules that are sparsely distributed in PCBM domains yield enhanced free charge carrier transport.

  16. Packaging Evaluation Approach to Improve Cosmetic Product Safety

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benedetta Briasco

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available In the Regulation 1223/2009, evaluation of packaging has become mandatory to assure cosmetic product safety. In fact, the safety assessment of a cosmetic product can be successfully carried out only if the hazard deriving from the use of the designed packaging for the specific product is correctly evaluated. Despite the law requirement, there is too little information about the chemical-physical characteristics of finished packaging and the possible interactions between formulation and packaging; furthermore, different from food packaging, the cosmetic packaging is not regulated and, to date, appropriate guidelines are still missing. The aim of this work was to propose a practical approach to investigate commercial polymeric containers used in cosmetic field, especially through mechanical properties’ evaluation, from a safety point of view. First of all, it is essential to obtain complete information about raw materials. Subsequently, using an appropriate full factorial experimental design, it is possible to investigate the variables, like polymeric density, treatment, or type of formulation involved in changes to packaging properties or in formulation-packaging interaction. The variation of these properties can greatly affect cosmetic safety. In particular, mechanical properties can be used as an indicator of pack performances and safety. As an example, containers made of two types of polyethylene with different density, low-density polyethylene (LDPE and high-density polyethylene (HDPE, are investigated. Regarding the substances potentially extractable from the packaging, in this work the headspace solid-phase microextraction method (HSSPME was used because this technique was reported in the literature as suitable to detect extractables from the polymeric material here employed.

  17. Pressure demagnetization - a potential approach to improve successfulabsolute paleointensity experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volk, M.; Gilder, S.

    2016-12-01

    Natural rocks rarely consist of ideal single-domain grains but rather contain mixtures of larger, non-ideal magnetic recorders (pseudo single PSD and multidomain grains MD), which often lead to non-linear trends on an Arai diagram. Here we present results using pressure demagnetization as a way to improve the quality of paleointensity determinations using the Coe modified Thellier method. Experiments were conducted on thermally stable obsidian containing titanomagnetite grains within the PSD range. A thermal remanent magnetization (TRM) in a 35 μT magnetic field was imparted on 20 specimens. Thellier-type paleointensity experiments were carried out at ambient conditions and after pressure cycling to 0.6, 1.2 and 1.8 GPa. Unpressurized samples yielded concave up Arai diagrams that underestimated paleointensities by 10-15%. Pressure cycling under hydrostatic conditions lowered the magnetic moment of the samples by 10%/GPa, yet produced more linear Arai plots. Normalizing the data with the initial, pre-compressed NRM value resulted in corrected paleointensity values of 35.7 ± 0.6, 35.3 ± 0.8 and 35.5 ± 0.9 μT after pressure cycling to 0.6, 1.2 and 1.8 GPa. Furthermore, the mean quality factors increased from 27 to 34, 47 and 47 for the pressure runs at 0.6, 1.2 and 1.8 GPa, respectively. These results suggest that pressure cycling preferentially demagnetizes the remanence held by PSD and MD grains, while leaving the remanence held by SD grains largely intact, leading to much greater retention rates and accuracy of paleointensity data.

  18. GENOMIC APPROACHES FOR IMPROVEMENT OF DROUGHT ADAPTATION IN WHEAT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dénes Dudits

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Breeding for yield stability under water limited conditions plays an essential role in the reduction of economic and social consequences of global climate changes. We show that two exotic drought resistant genotypes (Kobomughi and Plainsmann differ in root growth rate, root/shoot ratio, and adaptation to low soil water content. These genotypes exhibit characteristic transcript profiles as shown by barley macroarray studies using 10500 unigenes. Reprogramming of gene expression primarily occurred during the 1-2 weeks of water stress, and 6,1% of tested genes were up-regulated in roots of the more adaptive Plainsmann plants. The time course for expression of gene clusters from Kobomughi genotype revealed a prompt and transient gene activation that can help the survival of plants through function of various defense mechanisms. The aldo-keto reductases (AKRs can detoxify lipid peroxidation products (4-hydroxynon-2-enal and glycolysis-derived reactive aldehydes (metylglyoxal that contribute significantly to cellular damages caused by variety of environmental stresses such as drought, high light intensity, UV-B irradiation, cold. Overproduction of AKRs in transgenic tobacco or wheat plants provides considerable stress tolerance and resistance to methylglyoxal. Several transgenic wheat genotypes have been produced with production of elevated level of AKR enzyme. The drought tolerance of these materials was tested by a complex stress diagnostic system, that integrates imaging of plants and monitoring the leaf temperature and fluorescence induction. Based on these parameters, we can conclude that this transgenic strategy that is based on detoxification of lipid aldehyde can result in improved stress adaptation and reduced yield loss.

  19. Policy directions in urban health in developing countries--the slum improvement approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harpham, T; Stephens, C

    1992-07-01

    The urban development, or housing, sector has a longer experience of addressing the problems of the urban poor in developing countries than the health sector. In recent years the policy of 'slum improvement', which involves both sectors, has attracted the support of international donors. This article documents the development of the slum improvement approach and addresses key issues of the approach which have implications for health planning: covering the poorest dwellers; relocation; land tenure; gentrification; debt burdens and the impact on women. Questions about the approach which still need answering are defined and a summary of the constraints in slum improvement and potential solutions is presented.

  20. Innovative Approaches Using Lichen Enriched Media to Improve Isolation and Culturability of Lichen Associated Bacteria

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Biosca, Elena G; Flores, Raquel; Santander, Ricardo D; Díez-Gil, José Luis; Barreno, Eva

    2016-01-01

    ... and for the description of new taxa. Our objective was to improve the recovery of lichen associated bacteria by developing novel isolation and culture approaches, initially using the lichen Pseudevernia...

  1. Robotic Spent Fuel Monitoring – It is time to improve old approaches and old techniques!

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tobin, Stephen Joseph [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Dasari, Venkateswara Rao [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Trellue, Holly Renee [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)

    2016-12-13

    This report describes various approaches and techniques associated with robotic spent fuel. The purpose of this description is to improve the quality of measured signatures, reduce the inspection burden on the IAEA, and to provide frequent verification.

  2. An Approach to Improve the Quality of Infrared Images of Vein-Patterns

    OpenAIRE

    Chih-Lung Lin

    2011-01-01

    This study develops an approach to improve the quality of infrared (IR) images of vein-patterns, which usually have noise, low contrast, low brightness and small objects of interest, thus requiring preprocessing to improve their quality. The main characteristics of the proposed approach are that no prior knowledge about the IR image is necessary and no parameters must be preset. Two main goals are sought: impulse noise reduction and adaptive contrast enhancement technologies. In our study, a ...

  3. Improving the Process of Career Decision Making: An Action Research Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenbank, Paul

    2011-01-01

    Purpose: This study adopts an action research approach with the aim of improving the process of career decision making among undergraduates in a business school at a "new" university in the UK. Design/methodology/approach: The study utilised unfreezing techniques, multiple case studies in conjunction with the principle of analogical…

  4. The Use of the Functional Approach to Improve English Language Teaching Quality in Chinese Middle Schools

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    杨蕾

    2008-01-01

    This paper describes the condition of ELT(English Language Teaching)in China,analyzes the problems in middleschools' English teaching methods then introduces F.A.(Functional Approach)and its applications. It presents the advantages andsignificance of F.A.by comparing F.A.with common approaches.The disadvantages and possible improvements are also discussedin the paper.

  5. A participatory and integrative approach to improve productivity and ergonomics in assembly

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Looze, M.P. de; Rhijn, J.W. van; Deursen, J. van; Tuinzaad, G.H.; Reijneveld, C.N.

    2003-01-01

    A participatory and integrative approach was applied to improve the productivity and ergonomics of the assembly lines in two factories, producing magnetic stop valves and office furniture, respectively. Main elements of the approach are the active participation of the company and the integration of

  6. Improving Student Learning in Engineering Discipline Using Student- and Lecturer-Led Assessment Approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imam, Boulent; Rafiq, M. Imran; Kumar, Prashant

    2011-01-01

    This article investigates the effectiveness of two distinct formative assessment methods for promoting deep learning and hence improving the performance amongst engineering students. The first method, applied for undergraduate students, employs a lecturer-led approach whereas the second method uses a student-led approach and e-learning for…

  7. Stepwise pumping approach to improve free phase light hydrocarbon recovery from unconfined aquifers

    OpenAIRE

    1995-01-01

    A stepwise, time-varying pumping approach is developed to improve free phase oil recovery of light non-aqueous phase liquids {LNAPL) from a homogeneous, unconfined aquifer. Stepwise pumping is used to contain the floating oil plume and obtain efficient free oil recovery. The pumping approach is developed using detailed simulations, multiple linear regression and graphical plots. The approach uses ARMOS©, an areal two-dimensional multiphase flow, finite-element simulation model. Systematic sim...

  8. Improvement of risk assessment by integrating toxicological and epidemiological approaches: the case of isoflavones

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Islam, M.A.

    2015-01-01

      Improvement of risk assessment by integrating toxicological and epidemiological approaches: the case of isoflavones PhD-thesis Mohammed Ariful Islam This thesis describes the results of a research project that aimed at the improvement of the risk/benefit

  9. Improvement of risk assessment by integrating toxicological and epidemiological approaches: the case of isoflavones

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Islam, M.A.

    2015-01-01

      Improvement of risk assessment by integrating toxicological and epidemiological approaches: the case of isoflavones PhD-thesis Mohammed Ariful Islam This thesis describes the results of a research project that aimed at the improvement of the risk/benefit as

  10. Approaches to improve poultry vaccination using novel poultry adjuvants against coccidiosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    In this review, various new approaches to improve poultry adaptive immunity against coccidiosis through vaccination will be addressed using the recently published data. To improve poultry production and to meet the demands for the ever-increasing world human population, we need to develop new stra...

  11. Lean methodology: an evidence-based practice approach for healthcare improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Pauline M; Patterson, Claire J; OʼConnell, Mary P

    2013-12-10

    Lean methodology, an evidence-based practice approach adopted from Toyota, is grounded on the pillars of respect for people and continuous improvement. This article describes the use of Lean methodology to improve healthcare outcomes for patients with community-acquired pneumonia. Nurse practitioners and other clinicians should be knowledgeable about this methodology and become leaders in Lean transformation.

  12. Thermodynamics in 2+1 flavor QCD with improved Wilson quarks by the fixed scale approach

    CERN Document Server

    Umeda, T; Ejiri, S; Hatsuda, T; Kanaya, K; Maezawa, Y; Ohno, H

    2012-01-01

    We study thermodynamic properties of 2+1 flavor QCD with improved Wilson quarks coupled with the RG improved Iwasaki glue, using the fixed scale approach. We present the results for the equation of state, renormalized Polyakov loop, and chiral condensate.

  13. A DMAIC approach for process capability improvement an engine crankshaft manufacturing process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, G. V. S. S.; Rao, P. Srinivasa

    2014-05-01

    The define-measure-analyze-improve-control (DMAIC) approach is a five-strata approach, namely DMAIC. This approach is the scientific approach for reducing the deviations and improving the capability levels of the manufacturing processes. The present work elaborates on DMAIC approach applied in reducing the process variations of the stub-end-hole boring operation of the manufacture of crankshaft. This statistical process control study starts with selection of the critical-to-quality (CTQ) characteristic in the define stratum. The next stratum constitutes the collection of dimensional measurement data of the CTQ characteristic identified. This is followed by the analysis and improvement strata where the various quality control tools like Ishikawa diagram, physical mechanism analysis, failure modes effects analysis and analysis of variance are applied. Finally, the process monitoring charts are deployed at the workplace for regular monitoring and control of the concerned CTQ characteristic. By adopting DMAIC approach, standard deviation is reduced from 0.003 to 0.002. The process potential capability index ( C P) values improved from 1.29 to 2.02 and the process performance capability index ( C PK) values improved from 0.32 to 1.45, respectively.

  14. Towards a new approach of continuous process improvement based on CMMI and PMBOK

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rdiouat Yassine

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available A process-centric approach helps an organization to improve the way it works with. It allows scalability and provides a way to capitalize knowledge on best practices. It also makes better use of resources and helps to understand trends. PMBOK is a project management methodology, while CMMI is a model for process improvement. In this paper, we conduct a study on PMBOK and CMMI frameworks to show that they can be converged and complementary. We expect this paper research will be useful for organizations to deploy a new approach of continuous process improvement based on pooling CMMI and PMBOK.

  15. Improved radial basis function approach with the odd-even corrections

    CERN Document Server

    Niu, Z M; Liang, H Z; Niu, Y F; Guo, J Y

    2016-01-01

    The radial basis function (RBF) approach has been used to improve the mass predictions of nuclear models. However, systematic deviations exist between the improved masses and the experimental data for nuclei with different odd-even parities of ($Z$, $N$), i.e., the (even $Z$, even $N$), (even $Z$, odd $N$), (odd $Z$, even $N$), and (odd $Z$, odd $N$). By separately training the RBF for these four different groups, it is found that the systematic odd-even deviations can be cured in a large extend and the predictive power of nuclear mass models can thus be further improved. Moreover, this new approach can better reproduce the single-nucleon separation energies. Based on the latest version of Weizs\\"acker-Skyrme model WS4, the root-mean-square deviation of the improved masses with respect to known data falls to $135$ keV, approaching the chaos-related unpredictability limit ($\\sim 100$ keV).

  16. An improved a-cut approach to transforming fuzzy membership function into basic belief assignment

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yang Yi; X.Rong Li; Han Deqiang

    2016-01-01

    In practical applications, pieces of evidence originated from different sources might be modeled by different uncertainty theories. To implement the evidence combination under the Dempster–Shafer evidence theory (DST) framework, transformations from the other type of uncer-tainty representation into the basic belief assignment are needed. a-Cut is an important approach to transforming a fuzzy membership function into a basic belief assignment, which provides a bridge between the fuzzy set theory and the DST. Some drawbacks of the traditional a-cut approach caused by its normalization step are pointed out in this paper. An improved a-cut approach is pro-posed, which can counteract the drawbacks of the traditional a-cut approach and has good prop-erties. Illustrative examples, experiments and related analyses are provided to show the rationality of the improved a-cut approach.

  17. An improved α-cut approach to transforming fuzzy membership function into basic belief assignment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yang Yi

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available In practical applications, pieces of evidence originated from different sources might be modeled by different uncertainty theories. To implement the evidence combination under the Dempster–Shafer evidence theory (DST framework, transformations from the other type of uncertainty representation into the basic belief assignment are needed. α-Cut is an important approach to transforming a fuzzy membership function into a basic belief assignment, which provides a bridge between the fuzzy set theory and the DST. Some drawbacks of the traditional α-cut approach caused by its normalization step are pointed out in this paper. An improved α-cut approach is proposed, which can counteract the drawbacks of the traditional α-cut approach and has good properties. Illustrative examples, experiments and related analyses are provided to show the rationality of the improved α-cut approach.

  18. Improving the accuracy of density-functional theory calculation: the genetic algorithm and neural network approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Hui; Shi, LiLi; Zhang, Min; Su, Zhongmin; Wang, XiuJun; Hu, LiHong; Chen, GuanHua

    2007-04-14

    The combination of genetic algorithm and neural network approach (GANN) has been developed to improve the calculation accuracy of density functional theory. As a demonstration, this combined quantum mechanical calculation and GANN correction approach has been applied to evaluate the optical absorption energies of 150 organic molecules. The neural network approach reduces the root-mean-square (rms) deviation of the calculated absorption energies of 150 organic molecules from 0.47 to 0.22 eV for the TDDFTB3LYP6-31G(d) calculation, and the newly developed GANN correction approach reduces the rms deviation to 0.16 eV.

  19. The basis for improving and reforming long-term care. Part 4: identifying meaningful improvement approaches (segment 2).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levenson, Steven A

    2010-03-01

    While many aspects of nursing home care have improved over time, numerous issues persist. Presently, a potpourri of approaches and a push to "fix" the problem have overshadowed efforts to correctly define the problems and identify their diverse causes. This fourth and final article in the series (divided between last month's issue and this one) recommends strategies to make sense of improvement and reform efforts. This month's concluding segment covers additional proposed approaches. Despite the challenges of the current environment, all of the proposed strategies could potentially be applied with little or no delay. Despite having brought vast increases in knowledge, the research effort may be losing its traction as a formidable force for meaningful change. It is necessary to rethink the questions being asked and the scope of answers being sought. A shift to overcoming implementation challenges is needed. In addition, it is essential to address issues of jurisdiction (the apparent "ownership" of assessment and decision making over patient problems or body parts) and reductionism (the excessive management of these issues and problems without proper context) that result in fragmented and problematic care. Issues of knowledge and skill also need to be addressed, with greater emphasis on key generic and technical competencies of staff and practitioners, in addition to factual knowledge. There is a need to rethink the approach to measuring performance and trying to improve quality of care and services. There are significant limits to trying to use quality measures to improve outcomes and performance. Ultimately, vast improvement is needed in applying care principles and practices, independent of regulatory sources. Reimbursement needs to be revamped so that it helps promote care that is consistent with human biology and other key concepts. Finally, improving long-term care will require a coordinated societal effort. All social institutions and health care settings need

  20. BASICS OF INTEGRAL APPROACH TO IMPROVEMENT OF INNOVATION SYSTEM IN DEFENSE INDUSTRY COMPLEX OF RUSSIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Анатолий Андреевич Чудин

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The author develops integral approach to improvement of innovation system as exemplified by defense industry complex (DIC of Russia. Integral approach includes the elements of 3 approaches: system, synergetic and geotrion. This approach contains conceptual, modeling-projecting and realizing parts and the principles, mechanisms and technologies aimed for improvement of management of innovation system in Russia. DIC of Russia is an earth object – it is complex of complexes which is supposed to be established not only with the use of technological structure which is mainly referred to industrial society. The elements of new technological structures must be added to integral approach: knowledge economy and harmonization of society. The second, synergetic approach, is predominantly referred to post-industrial society. The third, geotrion approach, which is only being formed, is mainly referred to the society of sustainable harmonic development. Such objects were called geotrions by Russian scientist N. D. Matrusov [5], they consist of people, economy and environment (nature, territory, external opposed and interacting systems. The method of geotrion management is called integral approach. Knowledge economy can not be realized in Russia without harmonization of the country.DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12731/2218-7405-2014-2-13

  1. [Improvement approaches in the hospital setting: From total quality management to Lean].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curatolo, N; Lamouri, S; Huet, J-C; Rieutord, A

    2015-07-01

    Hospitals have to deal strong with economic constraints and increasing requirements in terms of quality and safety of care. To address these constraints, one solution could be the adoption of approaches from the industry sector. Following the decree of April 6, 2011 on the quality management of the medication use process, some of these approaches, such as risk management, are now part of the everyday work of healthcare professionals. However, other approaches, such as business process improvement, are still poorly developed in the hospital setting. In this general review, we discuss the main approaches of business process improvements that have been used in hospitals by focusing specifically on one of the newest and most currently used: Lean.

  2. How to Improve Current Situation of the Communicative Approach in High School EFL Teaching

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张丽芳

    2009-01-01

    The Communicative Approach has been used in EFL teaching of China for years; but still there are some problems centers around it when it is applied in high school English teaching. This paper explores the current situation of the Communicative Approach in Chinese high school EFL teaching by first looking at a simple case study, and then some suggestions are given as to how to improve this situation.

  3. Microsurgical resection of craniopharyngioma of the third ventricle via an improved transventricular approach

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XU Jian-guo; YOU Chao; CAI Bo-wen; JIANG Shu; SUN Hong; GUO Fu-you; YANG Yong-bo; WU Bo

    2005-01-01

    Background Craniopharyngioma of the third ventricle is difficult to treat and its therapeutic regimens and operative approaches have been controversial. This study was undertaken to probe indications for microsurgical resection of craniopharyngioma of the third ventricle via an improved transventricular approach, its surgical procedures and therapeutic effects, and prevention of postoperative complications.Methods Fifty-one patients with craniopharyngioma of the third ventricle were treated from January 2000 to October 2004 by an improved transventricular approach for removing the tumor via the interventricular foramen,the intermedius of the septum pellucidum or choroid fissure. Symptoms and signs of the patients, and results of imaging, operation, and follow-up were analyzed. Results Of the 51 patients who had received the improved transventricular resection, 4 underwent a combined approach with an entrance of the pterion. Forty patients (78.43%) underwent total resection and others subtotal resection, without an operative death. Epileptic seizures were found in 3 patients (5.88%) and subdural effusion in the operative field in 4 (7.84%). All patients showed good general conditions after operation, and follow-up for an average of 27.52 months showed relapse of the tumour in 8 patients (15.69%).Conclusions Microsurgical resection of craniopharyngioma of the third ventricle by an improved transventricular approach has advantages of operative safety and efficacy, lower mortality and disability, and less complications.

  4. Quality improvement projects targeting health care-associated infections: comparing Virtual Collaborative and Toolkit approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Speroff, Theodore; Ely, E Wes; Greevy, Robert; Weinger, Matthew B; Talbot, Thomas R; Wall, Richard J; Deshpande, Jayant K; France, Daniel J; Nwosu, Sam; Burgess, Hayley; Englebright, Jane; Williams, Mark V; Dittus, Robert S

    2011-05-01

    Collaborative and toolkit approaches have gained traction for improving quality in health care. To determine if a quality improvement virtual collaborative intervention would perform better than a toolkit-only approach at preventing central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs) and ventilator-associated pneumonias (VAPs). Cluster randomized trial with the Intensive Care Units (ICUs) of 60 hospitals assigned to the Toolkit (n=29) or Virtual Collaborative (n=31) group from January 2006 through September 2007. CLABSI and VAP rates. Follow-up survey on improvement interventions, toolkit utilization, and strategies for implementing improvement. A total of 83% of the Collaborative ICUs implemented all CLABSI interventions compared to 64% of those in the Toolkit group (P = 0.13), implemented daily catheter reviews more often (P = 0.04), and began this intervention sooner (P < 0.01). Eighty-six percent of the Collaborative group implemented the VAP bundle compared to 64% of the Toolkit group (P = 0.06). The CLABSI rate was 2.42 infections per 1000 catheter days at baseline and 2.73 at 18 months (P = 0.59). The VAP rate was 3.97 per 1000 ventilator days at baseline and 4.61 at 18 months (P = 0.50). Neither group improved outcomes over time; there was no differential performance between the 2 groups for either CLABSI rates (P = 0.71) or VAP rates (P = 0.80). The intensive collaborative approach outpaced the simpler toolkit approach in changing processes of care, but neither approach improved outcomes. Incorporating quality improvement methods, such as ICU checklists, into routine care processes is complex, highly context-dependent, and may take longer than 18 months to achieve. Copyright © 2011 Society of Hospital Medicine.

  5. Integrated Approach Towards the Application of Horizontal Wells to Improve Waterflooding Performance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kelkar, Mohan; Liner, Chris; Kerr, Dennis

    1999-10-15

    This final report describes the progress during the six year of the project on ''Integrated Approach Towards the Application of Horizontal Wells to Improve Waterflooding Performance.'' This report is funded under the Department of Energy's (DOE's) Class I program which is targeted towards improving the reservoir performance of mature oil fields located in fluvially-dominated deltaic deposits. The project involves using an integrated approach to characterize the reservoir followed by drilling of horizontal injection wells to improve production performance. The project was divided into two budget periods. In the first budget period, many modern technologies were used to develop a detailed reservoir management plan; whereas, in the second budget period, conventional data was used to develop a reservoir management plan. The idea was to determine the cost effectiveness of various technologies in improving the performance of mature oil fields.

  6. EXTENDING THE ASSESSMENT OF TECHNOLOGY-AIDED PROGRAMS TO SUPPORT LEISURE AND COMMUNICATION IN PEOPLE WITH ACQUIRED BRAIN INJURY AND EXTENSIVE MULTIPLE DISABILITIES.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lancioni, Giulio E; Singh, Nirbhay N; O'reilly, Mark F; Sigafoos, Jeff; Buonocunto, Francesca; D'amico, Fiora; Quaranta, Sara; Navarro, Jorge; Lanzilotti, Crocifissa; Colonna, Fabio

    2015-10-01

    Intervention programs for people with acquired brain injury and extensive motor and communication impairment need to be diversified according to their characteristics and environment. These two studies assessed two technology-aided programs for supporting leisure (i.e., access to songs and videos) and communication (i.e., expressing needs and feelings and making requests) in six of those people. The three people participating in Study 1 did not possess speech but were able to understand spoken and written sentences. Their program presented leisure and communication options through written phrases appearing on the computer screen. The three people participating in Study 2 did not possess any speech and were unable to understand spoken or written language. Their program presented leisure and communication options through pictorial images. All participants relied on a simple microswitch response to enter the options and activate songs, videos, and communication messages. The data showed that the participants of both studies learned to use the program available to them and to engage in leisure and communication independently. The importance of using programs adapted to the participants and their environment was discussed.

  7. Technology-aided leisure and communication opportunities for two post-coma persons emerged from a minimally conscious state and affected by multiple disabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lancioni, Giulio E; O'Reilly, Mark F; Singh, Nirbhay N; Sigafoos, Jeff; Buonocunto, Francesca; Sacco, Valentina; Navarro, Jorge; Lanzilotti, Crocifissa; De Tommaso, Marina; Megna, Marisa; Oliva, Doretta

    2013-02-01

    This study assessed technology-aided programs for helping two post-coma persons, who had emerged from a minimally conscious state and were affected by multiple disabilities, to (a) engage with leisure stimuli and request caregiver's procedures, (b) send out and listen to text messages for communication with distant partners, and (c) combine leisure engagement and procedure requests with text messaging within the same sessions. The program for leisure engagement and procedure requests relied on the use of a portable computer with commercial software, and a microswitch for the participants' response. The program for text messaging communication involved the use of a portable computer, a GSM modem, a microswitch for the participants' response, and specifically developed software. Results indicated that the participants were successful at each of the three stages of the study, thus providing relevant evidence concerning performance achievements only minimally documented. The implications of the findings in terms of technology and practical opportunities for post-coma persons with multiple disabilities are discussed.

  8. New approach to improve LER of EUV resist pattern by chemical and thermal treatment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagahara, Tatsuro; Yamamoto, Kazuma; Matsuura, Yuriko; Sekito, Takashi

    2015-03-01

    In this paper, we discuss a new approach to improve the resist roughness, which is applied after the lithography process. The ERC (Edge Roughness Controller) process is composed of two steps, 1) To deliver resist softening material at the resist surface 2) To give thermal flow at that region in the bake step. Several samples were prepared based on this concept and consistent improvement was observed. Finally, by optimizing ERC chemistry using HSP (Hansen Solubility Parameter), LWR improvement of 14.8% could be achieved.

  9. Improving "At-Action" Decision-Making in Team Sports through a Holistic Coaching Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Light, Richard L.; Harvey, Stephen; Mouchet, Alain

    2014-01-01

    This article draws on Game Sense pedagogy and complex learning theory (CLT) to make suggestions for improving decision-making ability in team sports by adopting a holistic approach to coaching with a focus on decision-making "at-action". It emphasizes the complexity of decision-making and the need to focus on the game as a whole entity,…

  10. Chemistry Writing Instruction and Training: Implementing a Comprehensive Approach to Improving Student Communication Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stewart, Alexander F.; Williams, Andrea L.; Lofgreen, Jennifer E.; Edgar, Landon J. G.; Hoch, Laura B.; Dicks, Andrew P.

    2016-01-01

    The ability of science undergraduate students to capably communicate course content and their understanding of scientific phenomena through writing has long been considered a problem. Effective methods for improving student writing skills are often fragmented and undertaken on a course-by-course basis rather than as a coordinated approach. This…

  11. Proposing and Testing an Integrative Approach to Improve EFL Students' Communicative Skill

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alhussain, Aisha

    2009-01-01

    An experimental study was conducted to investigate the effectiveness of using an integrative approach to improve EFL students' communicative skill. This was done by comparing the oral performance of the subjects who were taught grammar, listening, reading and speaking integratively to that of the subjects who were taught the same skills…

  12. Health care managers' views on and approaches to implementing models for improving care processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andreasson, Jörgen; Eriksson, Andrea; Dellve, Lotta

    2016-03-01

    To develop a deeper understanding of health-care managers' views on and approaches to the implementation of models for improving care processes. In health care, there are difficulties in implementing models for improving care processes that have been decided on by upper management. Leadership approaches to this implementation can affect the outcome. In-depth interviews with first- and second-line managers in Swedish hospitals were conducted and analysed using grounded theory. 'Coaching for participation' emerged as a central theme for managers in handling top-down initiated process development. The vertical approach in this coaching addresses how managers attempt to sustain unit integrity through adapting and translating orders from top management. The horizontal approach in the coaching refers to managers' strategies for motivating and engaging their employees in implementation work. Implementation models for improving care processes require a coaching leadership built on close manager-employee interaction, mindfulness regarding the pace of change at the unit level, managers with the competence to share responsibility with their teams and engaged employees with the competence to share responsibility for improving the care processes, and organisational structures that support process-oriented work. Implications for nursing management are the importance of giving nurse managers knowledge of change management. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. A Comprehensive Approach to Identifying Intervention Targets for Patient-Safety Improvement in a Hospital Setting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunningham, Thomas R.; Geller, E. Scott

    2012-01-01

    Despite differences in approaches to organizational problem solving, healthcare managers and organizational behavior management (OBM) practitioners share a number of practices, and connecting healthcare management with OBM may lead to improvements in patient safety. A broad needs-assessment methodology was applied to identify patient-safety…

  14. Improving the efficiency of a chemotherapy day unit: Applying a business approach to oncology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Lent, W.A.M.; Goedbloed, N.; van Harten, Willem H.

    2009-01-01

    Aim: To improve the efficiency of a hospital-based chemotherapy day unit (CDU). - Methods: The CDU was benchmarked with two other CDUs to identify their attainable performance levels for efficiency, and causes for differences. Furthermore, an in-depth analysis using a business approach, called lean

  15. Improving the efficiency of a chemotherapy day unit: Applying a business approach to oncology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lent, van Wineke A.M.; Goedbloed, N.; Harten, van W.H.

    2009-01-01

    Aim: To improve the efficiency of a hospital-based chemotherapy day unit (CDU). - Methods: The CDU was benchmarked with two other CDUs to identify their attainable performance levels for efficiency, and causes for differences. Furthermore, an in-depth analysis using a business approach, called lean

  16. Improving Students' Creative Thinking and Achievement through the Implementation of Multiple Intelligence Approach with Mind Mapping

    Science.gov (United States)

    Widiana, I. Wayan; Jampel, I. Nyoman

    2016-01-01

    This classroom action research aimed to improve the students' creative thinking and achievement in learning science. It conducted through the implementation of multiple intelligences with mind mapping approach and describing the students' responses. The subjects of this research were the fifth grade students of SD 8 Tianyar Barat, Kubu, and…

  17. The scientific learning approach using multimedia-based maze game to improve learning outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Setiawan, Wawan; Hafitriani, Sarah; Prabawa, Harsa Wara

    2016-02-01

    The objective of curriculum 2013 is to improve the quality of education in Indonesia, which leads to improving the quality of learning. The scientific approach and supported empowerment media is one approach as massaged of curriculum 2013. This research aims to design a labyrinth game based multimedia and apply in the scientific learning approach. This study was conducted in one of the Vocational School in Subjects of Computer Network on 2 (two) classes of experimental and control. The method used Mix Method Research (MMR) which combines qualitative in multimedia design, and quantitative in the study of learning impact. The results of a survey showed that the general of vocational students like of network topology material (68%), like multimedia (74%), and in particular, like interactive multimedia games and flash (84%). Multimediabased maze game developed good eligibility based on media and material aspects of each value 840% and 82%. Student learning outcomes as a result of using a scientific approach to learning with a multimediabased labyrinth game increase with an average of gain index about (58%) and higher than conventional multimedia with index average gain of 0.41 (41%). Based on these results the scientific approach to learning by using multimediabased labyrinth game can improve the quality of learning and increase understanding of students. Multimedia of learning based labyrinth game, which developed, got a positive response from the students with a good qualification level (75%).

  18. A hierarchical approach for the design improvements of an Organocat biorefinery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdelaziz, Omar Y; Gadalla, Mamdouh A; El-Halwagi, Mahmoud M; Ashour, Fatma H

    2015-04-01

    Lignocellulosic biomass has emerged as a potentially attractive renewable energy source. Processing technologies of such biomass, particularly its primary separation, still lack economic justification due to intense energy requirements. Establishing an economically viable and energy efficient biorefinery scheme is a significant challenge. In this work, a systematic approach is proposed for improving basic/existing biorefinery designs. This approach is based on enhancing the efficiency of mass and energy utilization through the use of a hierarchical design approach that involves mass and energy integration. The proposed procedure is applied to a novel biorefinery called Organocat to minimize its energy and mass consumption and total annualized cost. An improved heat exchanger network with minimum energy consumption of 4.5 MJ/kgdry biomass is designed. An optimal recycle network with zero fresh water usage and minimum waste discharge is also constructed, making the process more competitive and economically attractive. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Using the experience-based design approach to improve orthodontic care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis, Pamela E; Silverton, Sarah

    2014-12-01

    The experience-based design (ebd) approach is a method of measuring patient experience, which deliberately draws out subjective, emotional and personal feelings of the patients using a service. We describe how the experience-based design approach has been used to measure the experiences of teenage patients at orthodontic consultation appointments in a district general hospital. This has allowed us to identify the points in the patient's journey where they experience most anxiety and nervousness and to target service improvements in these areas. We found the ebd approach effective in measuring patient experience in a teenage patient population. We demonstrate how the service improvements implemented have reduced negative feelings during new patient consultations.

  20. Improving the Seasonal Forecast of Summer Precipitation in China Using a Dynamical-Statistical Approach

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    JIA Xiao-Jing; ZHU Pei-Jun

    2010-01-01

    A dynamical-statistical post-processing approach is applied to seasonal precipitation forecasts in China during the summer.The data are ensemble-mean seasonal forecasts in summer(June-August)from four atmospheric general circulation models(GCMs)in the second phase of the Canadian Historical Forecasting Project(HFP2)from 1969 to 2001.This dynamical-statistical approach is designed based on the relationship between the 500 geopotential height(Z500)forecast and the observed sea surface temperature(SST)to calibrate the precipitation forecasts.The results show that the post-processing can improve summer precipitation forecasts for many areas in China.Further examination shows that this post-processing approach is very effective in reducing the model-dependent part of the errors,which are associated with GCMs.The possible mechanisms behind the forecast's improvements are investigated.

  1. An Improved Control Vector Iteration Approach for Nonlinear Dynamic Optimization. II. Problems with Path Constraints

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    胡云卿; 刘兴高; 薛安克

    2014-01-01

    This paper considers dealing with path constraints in the framework of the improved control vector it-eration (CVI) approach. Two available ways for enforcing equality path constraints are presented, which can be di-rectly incorporated into the improved CVI approach. Inequality path constraints are much more difficult to deal with, even for small scale problems, because the time intervals where the inequality path constraints are active are unknown in advance. To overcome the challenge, the l1 penalty function and a novel smoothing technique are in-troduced, leading to a new effective approach. Moreover, on the basis of the relevant theorems, a numerical algo-rithm is proposed for nonlinear dynamic optimization problems with inequality path constraints. Results obtained from the classic batch reactor operation problem are in agreement with the literature reports, and the computational efficiency is also high.

  2. Power-Split Hybrid Electric Vehicle Energy Management Based on Improved Logic Threshold Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhumu Fu

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available We design an improved logic threshold approach of energy management for a power-split HEV assisted by an integrated starter generator (ISG. By combining the efficiency map and the optimum torque curve of internal combustion engine (ICE with the state of charge (SOC of batteries, the improved logic threshold controller manages the ICE within its peak efficiency region at first. Then the electrical power demand is established based on the ICE energy output. On that premise, a variable logic threshold value K is defined to achieve the power distribution between the ISG and the electric motor/generator (EMG. Finally, simulation models for the power-split HEV with improved logic threshold controller are established in ADVISOR. Compared to the equally power-split HEV with the logic threshold controller, when using the improved logic threshold controller, the battery power consumption, the ICE efficiency, the fuel consumption, and the motor driving system efficiency are improved.

  3. A NOVEL SPEECH ENHANCEMENT APPROACH BASED ON MODIFIED DCT AND IMPROVED PITCH SYNCHRONOUS ANALYSIS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. R. Balaji

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Speech enhancement has become an essential issue within the field of speech and signal processing, because of the necessity to enhance the performance of voice communication systems in noisy environment. There has been a number of research works being carried out in speech processing but still there is always room for improvement. The main aim is to enhance the apparent quality of the speech and to improve the intelligibility. Signal representation and enhancement in cosine transformation is observed to provide significant results. Discrete Cosine Transformation has been widely used for speech enhancement. In this research work, instead of DCT, Advanced DCT (ADCT which simultaneous offers energy compaction along with critical sampling and flexible window switching. In order to deal with the issue of frame to frame deviations of the Cosine Transformations, ADCT is integrated with Pitch Synchronous Analysis (PSA. Moreover, in order to improve the noise minimization performance of the system, Improved Iterative Wiener Filtering approach called Constrained Iterative Wiener Filtering (CIWF is used in this approach. Thus, a novel ADCT based speech enhancement using improved iterative filtering algorithm integrated with PSA is used in this approach.

  4. Improved segmentation of abnormal cervical nuclei using a graph-search based approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Ling; Liu, Shaoxiong; Wang, Tianfu; Chen, Siping; Sonka, Milan

    2015-03-01

    Reliable segmentation of abnormal nuclei in cervical cytology is of paramount importance in automation-assisted screening techniques. This paper presents a general method for improving the segmentation of abnormal nuclei using a graph-search based approach. More specifically, the proposed method focuses on the improvement of coarse (initial) segmentation. The improvement relies on a transform that maps round-like border in the Cartesian coordinate system into lines in the polar coordinate system. The costs consisting of nucleus-specific edge and region information are assigned to the nodes. The globally optimal path in the constructed graph is then identified by dynamic programming. We have tested the proposed method on abnormal nuclei from two cervical cell image datasets, Herlev and H and E stained liquid-based cytology (HELBC), and the comparative experiments with recent state-of-the-art approaches demonstrate the superior performance of the proposed method.

  5. Teaching internal medicine residents quality improvement and patient safety: a lean thinking approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Christopher S; Lukela, Michael P; Parekh, Vikas I; Mangrulkar, Rajesh S; Del Valle, John; Spahlinger, David A; Billi, John E

    2010-01-01

    Patient safety (PS) and quality improvement (QI) are among the highest priorities for all health systems. Resident physicians are often at the front lines of providing care for patients. In many instances, however, QI and PS initiatives exclude trainees. By aligning the goals of the health system with those of the residency program to engage residents in QI and PS projects, there is a unique opportunity to fulfill both a corporate and educational mission to improve patient care. Here, the authors briefly describe one residency program's educational curriculum to provide foundational knowledge in QI and PS to all its trainees and highlight a resident team-based project that applied principles of lean thinking to evaluate the process of responding to an in-hospital cardiopulmonary arrest. This approach provided residents with a practical experience but also presented an opportunity for trainees to align with the health system's approach to improving quality and safety.

  6. A Memetic Approach for Improving Minimum Cost of Economic Load Dispatch Problems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinho Kim

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Economic load dispatch problem is a popular optimization problem in electrical power system field, which has been so far tackled by various mathematical and metaheuristic approaches including Lagrangian relaxation, branch and bound method, genetic algorithm, tabu search, particle swarm optimization, harmony search, and Taguchi method. On top of these techniques, this study proposes a novel memetic algorithm scheme combining metaheuristic algorithm and gradient-based technique to find better solutions for an economic load dispatch problem with valve-point loading. Because metaheuristic algorithms have the strength in global search and gradient-based techniques have the strength in local search, the combination approach obtains better results than those of any single approach. A bench-mark example of 40 generating-unit economic load dispatch problem demonstrates that the memetic approach can further improve the existing best solutions from the literature.

  7. Integration of value stream map and strategic layout planning into DMAIC approach to improve carpeting process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ayman Nagi

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: This paper presents an implementation of the Six Sigma DMAIC approach implementing lean tools and facilities layout techniques to reduce the occurrence of different types of nonconformities in the carpeting process. Such carpeting process can be found in several industries such as construction, aviation, and automotive. Design/methodology/approach: The improvement process was built through a sequential implementation of appropriate interconnected tools at each phase of the DMAIC approach. Utilized tools included: Pareto analysis, control charts, Ishikawa chart, 5-whys, failure mode and effect analysis, process capability ratio, value stream mapping, and strategic layout planning. Findings: The carpeting process capability, quality of the product, customer satisfaction, and cost of poor quality were significantly improved. Explicitly, the sigma level was improved from 2.297 to 2.886 and the defects per million opportunities (DPMO was reduced from 21615 to 3905. Originality/value: This paper has approved the capability of the Six Sigma DMAIC approach to analyze, investigate, and remove the root causes of the carpeting (preparation-installation process nonconformities .

  8. An appreciative inquiry approach to practice improvement and transformative change in health care settings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carter, Caroline A; Ruhe, Mary C; Weyer, Sharon; Litaker, David; Fry, Ronald E; Stange, Kurt C

    2007-01-01

    Amid tremendous changes and widespread dissatisfaction with the current health care system, many approaches to improve practice have emerged; however, their effects on quality of care have been disappointing. This article describes the application of a new approach to promote organizational improvement and transformation that is built upon collective goals and personal motivations, invites participation at all levels of the organization and connected community, and taps into latent creativity and energy. The essential elements of the appreciative inquiry (AI) process include identification of an appreciative topic and acting on this theme through 4 steps: Discovery, Dream, Design, and Destiny. We describe each step in detail and provide a case study example, drawn from a composite of practices, to highlight opportunities and challenges that may be encountered in applying AI. AI is a unique process that offers practice members an opportunity to reflect on the existing strengths within the practice, leads them to discover what is important, and builds a collective vision of the preferred future. New approaches such as AI have the potential to transform practices, improve patient care, and enhance individual and group motivation by changing the way participants think about, approach, and envision the future.

  9. Improving statistical keyword detection in short texts: Entropic and clustering approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carretero-Campos, C.; Bernaola-Galván, P.; Coronado, A. V.; Carpena, P.

    2013-03-01

    In the last years, two successful approaches have been introduced to tackle the problem of statistical keyword detection in a text without the use of external information: (i) The entropic approach, where Shannon’s entropy of information is used to quantify the information content of the sequence of occurrences of each word in the text; and (ii) The clustering approach, which links the heterogeneity of the spatial distribution of a word in the text (clustering) with its relevance. In this paper, first we present some modifications to both techniques which improve their results. Then, we propose new metrics to evaluate the performance of keyword detectors based specifically on the needs of a typical user, and we employ them to find out which approach performs better. Although both approaches work well in long texts, we obtain in general that measures based on word-clustering perform at least as well as the entropic measure, which needs a convenient partition of the text to be applied, such as chapters of a book. In the latter approach we also show that the partition of the text chosen affects strongly its results. Finally, we focus on short texts, a case of high practical importance, such as short reports, web pages, scientific articles, etc. We show that the performance of word-clustering measures is also good in generic short texts since these measures are able to discriminate better the degree of relevance of low frequency words than the entropic approach.

  10. Two approaches to improving mental health care: positivist/quantitative versus skill-based/qualitative.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luchins, Daniel

    2012-01-01

    The quality improvement model currently used in medicine and mental health was adopted from industry, where it developed out of early 20th-century efforts to apply a positivist/quantitative agenda to improving manufacturing. This article questions the application of this model to mental health care. It argues that (1) developing "operational definitions" for something as value-laden as "quality" risks conflating two realms, what we measure with what we value; (2) when measurements that are tied to individuals are aggregated to establish benchmarks and goals, unwarranted mathematical assumptions are made; (3) choosing clinical outcomes is problematic; (4) there is little relationship between process measures and clinical outcomes; and (5) since changes in quality indices do not relate to improved clinical care, management's reliance on such indices provides an illusory sense of control. An alternative model is the older, skill-based/qualitative approach to knowing, which relies on "implicit/ expert" knowledge. These two approaches offer a series of contrasts: quality versus excellence, competence versus expertise, management versus leadership, extrinsic versus intrinsic rewards. The article concludes that we need not totally dispense with the current quality improvement model, but rather should balance quantitative efforts with the older qualitative approach in a mixed methods model.

  11. Inductive-Deductive Approach to Improve Mathematical Problem Solving for Junior High School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahmah, Mariam Ar

    2017-02-01

    This research is experimental quantitative about quasi experiment that emphasize on improve mathematical understanding and problem solving for Junior High School students by inductive-deductive implementation. The population of this research are all of students at IX degree students in Subang 2012/2013. Two of nine classes were chosen as sample for this research. The topic which used is probability including random occurrence, basics of chance, relative frequency, calculation of probability, determining the value of probability, the expected frequency and the combined odds of two events. The instrument that was used are test and non-test. Mathematical understanding and problem solving were used as a test methods. Meanwhile questionnaire, and observation sheet were used as non-test methods. The data was analyzed by Mann-Whitney and t-test. According to whole analyze in this research, can be concluded: 1) the student improvement of mathematical understanding by using inductive-deductive approach is in middle quality, 2) there is no significant difference at improvement mathematical understanding between experimental class and control class, 3) the improvement of student’s ability in mathematical problem solving that use inductive-deductive approach has a low quality, 4) there is no significant difference at mathematical problem solving between experimental class and control class, 5) most of students has positive responses to mathematic learning by inductive-deductive approach, although the students have many problems when learning takes place.

  12. A multidisciplinary team care approach improves outcomes in high-risk pediatric neuroblastoma patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Hsiu-Hao; Liu, Yen-Lin; Lu, Meng-Yao; Jou, Shiann-Tarng; Yang, Yung-Li; Lin, Dong-Tsamn; Lin, Kai-Hsin; Tzen, Kai-Yuan; Yen, Ruoh-Fang; Lu, Ching-Chu; Liu, Chia-Ju; Peng, Steven Shinn-Forng; Jeng, Yung-Ming; Huang, Shiu-Feng; Lee, Hsinyu; Juan, Hsueh-Fen; Huang, Min-Chuan; Liao, Yung-Feng; Lee, Ya-Ling; Hsu, Wen-Ming

    2017-01-17

    We assessed the impact of a multidisciplinary team care program on treatment outcomes in neuroblastoma patients. Newly diagnosed neuroblastoma patients received treatment under the Taiwan Pediatric Oncology Group (TPOG) N2002 protocol at the National Taiwan University Hospital beginning in 2002. A multidisciplinary team care approach that included nurse-led case management for patients treated under this protocol began in January 2010. Fifty-eight neuroblastoma patients, including 29 treated between 2002 and 2009 (Group 1) and 29 treated between 2010 and 2014 (Group 2), were enrolled in the study. The 5-year overall survival (OS) and event-free survival (EFS) rates for all 58 patients were 59% and 54.7%, respectively. Group 2 patients, who were treated after implementation of the multidisciplinary team care program, had better 3-year EFS (P = 0.046), but not OS (P = 0.16), rates than Group 1 patients. In a multivariate analysis, implementation of the multidisciplinary team approach was the only significant independent prognostic factor for neuroblastoma patients. In further subgroup analyses, the multidisciplinary team approach improved EFS, but not OS, in patients with stage 4 disease, those in the high-risk group, and those with non-MYCN amplified tumors. These data indicate a multidisciplinary team care approach improved survival outcomes in high-risk neuroblastoma patients. However, further investigation will be required to evaluate the long-term effects of this approach over longer follow-up periods.

  13. Approach to Improve Speed of Sound Calculation within PC-SAFT Framework

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Liang, Xiaodong; Maribo-Mogensen, Bjørn; Thomsen, Kaj;

    2012-01-01

    An extensive comparison of SRK, CPA and PC-SAFT for speed of sound in normal alkanes has been performed. The results reveal that PC-SAFT captures the curvature of speed of sound better than cubic EoS but the accuracy is not satisfactory. Two approaches have been proposed to improve PC-SAFT’s accu...... keeping acceptable accuracy for the primary properties, i.e. vapor pressure (2.1%) and liquid density (1.5%). The two approaches have also been applied to methanol, and both give very good results....

  14. An IcLL Approach to English Language Teaching to Improve Learners’ICC

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    长安大学外国语学院,陕西西安710064

    2015-01-01

    Language is learned to communicate, but how to use it appropriately is far more important. Since language and culture have an inextricable link in between, to improve the students’Intercultural communicative competence (ICC), issues on integrat⁃ing an intercultural approach into ELT classroom has been long debated and studied in foreign language teaching field. This paper will start with the definition of ICC, analyze the correlation between language and culture then offer valuable suggestions on how to integrate IcLL approach into ELT in China.

  15. Pharmaceutical particle technologies: An approach to improve drug solubility, dissolution and bioavailability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prakash Khadka

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Pharmaceutical particle technology is employed to improve poor aqueous solubility of drug compounds that limits in vivo bioavailability owing to their low dissolution rate in the gastrointestinal fluids following oral administration. The particle technology involves several approaches from the conventional size reduction processes to the newer, novel particle technologies that modify the solubility properties of the drugs and produce solid, powdered form of the drugs that are readily soluble in water and can be easily formulated into various dosage forms. This review highlights the solid particle technologies available for improving solubility, dissolution and bioavailability of drugs with poor aqueous solubility.

  16. An approach to improving the dynamical extended-range (monthly) prediction

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2003-01-01

    Focusing on common and significant forecast errors-the zonal mean errors in the numerical prediction model, this report proposes an approach to improving the dynamical extended-range (monthly) prediction. Firstly, the monthly pentad-mean nonlinear dynamical regional prediction model of the zonal-mean height based on a large number of historical data is constituted by employing the reconstruction phase space theory and the spatio-temporal series predictive method. The zonal height thus produced is transformed to its counterpart in the numerical model and further used to revise the numerical model prediction during the integration process. In this way, the two different kinds of prediction are combined. The forecasting experimenal results show that the above hybrid approach not only reduces the systematical error of the numerical model, but also improves the forecast of the non-axisymmetric components due to the wave-flow interaction.

  17. A Practical Research on Lexical Approach: How to Use Chunks to Improve Junior Students’ Writing Skills

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    袁英

    2016-01-01

    This article is a practical research on lexical approach,and it tries to present how to use chunks to improve junior writing skills by showing some authentic teaching experience.At the very beginning,it generalizes the background of this article.Then,it gives a wellknown definition and classification of chunks.Next,it presents an example to show how to use chunks facilitate students’writing on the basis of the texts from students’

  18. Novel approaches for improved performance of inertial sensors and integrated navigation systems

    OpenAIRE

    Edwan, Ezzaldeen

    2013-01-01

    Navigation is the science and art that answers the questions of knowing where you are at the current moment and where you will be in the next moment. Modern navigation systems are based mainly on satellite and inertial sensors. Inertial sensor systems are becoming very popular in navigation systems because they are self contained sensors. The goal of this research is to develop novel approaches for improving the performance of inertial sensor systems and their integration algorithms with exte...

  19. IMPROVING TRUST THROUGH ETHICAL LEADERSHIP: MOVING BEYOND THE SOCIAL LEARNING THEORY TO A HISTORICAL LEARNING APPROACH

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Omoregie Charles Osifo

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The complex nature of trust and its evolving relative concepts require a more idealistic and simpler review. Ethical leadership is related to trust, honesty, transparency, compassion, empathy, results-orientedness, and many other behavioral attributes. Ethical leadership and good leadership are the same, because they represent practicing what one preaches or showing a way to the accomplishment of set goals. The outcomes and findings of many research papers on trust and ethical leadership report positive correlations between ethical leadership and trust. Improving trust from different rational standpoints requires moving and looking beyond the popular theoretical framework through which most results are derived in order to create a new thinking perspective. Social learning theory strongly emphasizes modelling while the new historical learning approach, proposed by the author, is defined as an approach that creates unique historical awareness among individuals, groups, institutions, societies, and nations to use previous experience(s or occurrence(s as a guide in developing positive opinion(s and framework(s in order to tackle the problems and issues of today and tomorrow. Social learning theory is seen as limited from the perspectives of balancing the equation between leadership and trust, the non-compatibility of the values of different generations at work, and other approaches and methods that support the historical approach. This paper is argumentative, adopts a writer´s perspective, and employs a logical analysis of the literature. The main contention is that a historical learning approach can inform an independent-learning to improve trust and its relatives (e.g. motivation and performance, because independent learning can positively shape the value of integrity, which is an integral part of ethical leadership. Historical learning can positively shape leadership in every perspective, because good leadership can develop based on history and

  20. Improving the physical layer security of wireless communication networks using spread spectrum coding and artificial noise approach

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Adedeji, K

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available in progress on a proposed hybrid spread spectrum coding and artificial noise approach to improving the physical layer security of wireless communication channels. The authors are optimistic that, the proposed method will further improve the physical layer...

  1. Some key approaches that could improve learning chemistry in higher education

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nazgul Sanakovna Dalabayeva

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available This article considers some key approaches, which could improve learning in chemistry. Some important factors, which aid learning in higher education, are feedback, active learning techniques, developing critical thinking skills and avoiding plagiarism. Students often have to act on feedback and employ critical thinking skills in the laboratories, lectures and seminars in order to develop skills and progress in their discipline. The University of Reading has studied techniques to aid learning throughout the educational process. Roles of an educator and a student are emphasized. Active learning approaches have shown increase in student knowledge and understanding as well as enhanced critical thinking and communication skills. Active learning approaches include solving problems in pairs and small groups, self-study techniques including writing essays, revision and consolidation work, preparing and giving presentations, report writing and carrying out mini projects or investigations. Also, some measures of assessment used in higher education are given in the paper.

  2. An Improved VFF Approach for Robot Path Planning in Unknown and Dynamic Environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianjun Ni

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Robot path planning in unknown and dynamic environments is one of the hot topics in the field of robot control. The virtual force field (VFF is an efficient path planning method for robot. However, there are some shortcomings of the traditional VFF based methods, such as the local minimum problem and the higher computational complexity, in dealing with the dynamic obstacle avoidance. In this paper, an improved VFF approach is proposed for the real-time robot path planning, where the environment is unknown and changing. An area ratio parameter is introduced into the proposed VFF based approach, where the size of the robot and obstacles are considered. Furthermore, a fuzzy control module is added, to deal with the problem of obstacle avoidance in dynamic environments, by adjusting the rotation angle of the robot. Finally, some simulation experiments are carried out to validate and demonstrate the efficiency of the proposed approach.

  3. Forecasting and analyzing high O3 time series in educational area through an improved chaotic approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamid, Nor Zila Abd; Adenan, Nur Hamiza; Noorani, Mohd Salmi Md

    2017-08-01

    Forecasting and analyzing the ozone (O3) concentration time series is important because the pollutant is harmful to health. This study is a pilot study for forecasting and analyzing the O3 time series in one of Malaysian educational area namely Shah Alam using chaotic approach. Through this approach, the observed hourly scalar time series is reconstructed into a multi-dimensional phase space, which is then used to forecast the future time series through the local linear approximation method. The main purpose is to forecast the high O3 concentrations. The original method performed poorly but the improved method addressed the weakness thereby enabling the high concentrations to be successfully forecast. The correlation coefficient between the observed and forecasted time series through the improved method is 0.9159 and both the mean absolute error and root mean squared error are low. Thus, the improved method is advantageous. The time series analysis by means of the phase space plot and Cao method identified the presence of low-dimensional chaotic dynamics in the observed O3 time series. Results showed that at least seven factors affect the studied O3 time series, which is consistent with the listed factors from the diurnal variations investigation and the sensitivity analysis from past studies. In conclusion, chaotic approach has been successfully forecast and analyzes the O3 time series in educational area of Shah Alam. These findings are expected to help stakeholders such as Ministry of Education and Department of Environment in having a better air pollution management.

  4. An Approach to Improve the Quality of Infrared Images of Vein-Patterns

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chih-Lung Lin

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available This study develops an approach to improve the quality of infrared (IR images of vein-patterns, which usually have noise, low contrast, low brightness and small objects of interest, thus requiring preprocessing to improve their quality. The main characteristics of the proposed approach are that no prior knowledge about the IR image is necessary and no parameters must be preset. Two main goals are sought: impulse noise reduction and adaptive contrast enhancement technologies. In our study, a fast median-based filter (FMBF is developed as a noise reduction method. It is based on an IR imaging mechanism to detect the noisy pixels and on a modified median-based filter to remove the noisy pixels in IR images. FMBF has the advantage of a low computation load. In addition, FMBF can retain reasonably good edges and texture information when the size of the filter window increases. The most important advantage is that the peak signal-to-noise ratio (PSNR caused by FMBF is higher than the PSNR caused by the median filter. A hybrid cumulative histogram equalization (HCHE is proposed for adaptive contrast enhancement. HCHE can automatically generate a hybrid cumulative histogram (HCH based on two different pieces of information about the image histogram. HCHE can improve the enhancement effect on hot objects rather than background. The experimental results are addressed and demonstrate that the proposed approach is feasible for use as an effective and adaptive process for enhancing the quality of IR vein-pattern images.

  5. An approach to improve the quality of infrared images of vein-patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Chih-Lung

    2011-01-01

    This study develops an approach to improve the quality of infrared (IR) images of vein-patterns, which usually have noise, low contrast, low brightness and small objects of interest, thus requiring preprocessing to improve their quality. The main characteristics of the proposed approach are that no prior knowledge about the IR image is necessary and no parameters must be preset. Two main goals are sought: impulse noise reduction and adaptive contrast enhancement technologies. In our study, a fast median-based filter (FMBF) is developed as a noise reduction method. It is based on an IR imaging mechanism to detect the noisy pixels and on a modified median-based filter to remove the noisy pixels in IR images. FMBF has the advantage of a low computation load. In addition, FMBF can retain reasonably good edges and texture information when the size of the filter window increases. The most important advantage is that the peak signal-to-noise ratio (PSNR) caused by FMBF is higher than the PSNR caused by the median filter. A hybrid cumulative histogram equalization (HCHE) is proposed for adaptive contrast enhancement. HCHE can automatically generate a hybrid cumulative histogram (HCH) based on two different pieces of information about the image histogram. HCHE can improve the enhancement effect on hot objects rather than background. The experimental results are addressed and demonstrate that the proposed approach is feasible for use as an effective and adaptive process for enhancing the quality of IR vein-pattern images.

  6. Improving Wishart Classification of Polarimetric SAR Data Using the Hopfield Neural Network Optimization Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Íñigo Molina

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper proposes the optimization relaxation approach based on the analogue Hopfield Neural Network (HNN for cluster refinement of pre-classified Polarimetric Synthetic Aperture Radar (PolSAR image data. We consider the initial classification provided by the maximum-likelihood classifier based on the complex Wishart distribution, which is then supplied to the HNN optimization approach. The goal is to improve the classification results obtained by the Wishart approach. The classification improvement is verified by computing a cluster separability coefficient and a measure of homogeneity within the clusters. During the HNN optimization process, for each iteration and for each pixel, two consistency coefficients are computed, taking into account two types of relations between the pixel under consideration and its corresponding neighbors. Based on these coefficients and on the information coming from the pixel itself, the pixel under study is re-classified. Different experiments are carried out to verify that the proposed approach outperforms other strategies, achieving the best results in terms of separability and a trade-off with the homogeneity preserving relevant structures in the image. The performance is also measured in terms of computational central processing unit (CPU times.

  7. A Positive Deviance Approach to Understanding Key Features to Improving Diabetes Care in the Medical Home

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gabbay, Robert A.; Friedberg, Mark W.; Miller-Day, Michelle; Cronholm, Peter F.; Adelman, Alan; Schneider, Eric C.

    2013-01-01

    PURPOSE The medical home has gained national attention as a model to reorganize primary care to improve health outcomes. Pennsylvania has undertaken one of the largest state-based, multipayer medical home pilot projects. We used a positive deviance approach to identify and compare factors driving the care models of practices showing the greatest and least improvement in diabetes care in a sample of 25 primary care practices in southeast Pennsylvania. METHODS We ranked practices into improvement quintiles on the basis of the average absolute percentage point improvement from baseline to 18 months in 3 registry-based measures of performance related to diabetes care: glycated hemoglobin concentration, blood pressure, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol level. We then conducted surveys and key informant interviews with leaders and staff in the 5 most and least improved practices, and compared their responses. RESULTS The most improved/higher-performing practices tended to have greater structural capabilities (eg, electronic health records) than the least improved/lower-performing practices at baseline. Interviews revealed striking differences between the groups in terms of leadership styles and shared vision; sense, use, and development of teams; processes for monitoring progress and obtaining feedback; and presence of technologic and financial distractions. CONCLUSIONS Positive deviance analysis suggests that primary care practices’ baseline structural capabilities and abilities to buffer the stresses of change may be key facilitators of performance improvement in medical home transformations. Attention to the practices’ structural capabilities and factors shaping successful change, especially early in the process, will be necessary to improve the likelihood of successful medical home transformation and better care. PMID:23690393

  8. A New Approach of Modeling an Ultra-Super-Critical Power Plant for Performance Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guolian Hou

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available A suitable model of coordinated control system (CCS with high accuracy and simple structure is essential for the design of advanced controllers which can improve the efficiency of the ultra-super-critical (USC power plant. Therefore, with the demand of plant performance improvement, an improved T-S fuzzy model identification approach is proposed in this paper. Firstly, the improved entropy cluster algorithm is applied to identify the premise parameters which can automatically determine the cluster numbers and initial cluster centers by introducing the concept of a decision-making constant and threshold. Then, the learning algorithm is used to modify the initial cluster center and a new structure of concluding part is discussed, the incremental data around the cluster center is used to identify the local linear model through a weighted recursive least-square algorithm. Finally, the proposed approach is employed to model the CCS of a 1000 MW USC one-through boiler power plant by using on-site measured data. Simulation results show that the T-S fuzzy model built in this paper is accurate enough to reflect the dynamic performance of CCS and can be treated as a foundation model for the overall optimizing control of the USC power plant.

  9. Generic project definitions for improvement of health care delivery: a case-based approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niemeijer, Gerard C; Does, Ronald J M M; de Mast, Jeroen; Trip, Albert; van den Heuvel, Jaap

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to create actionable knowledge, making the definition of process improvement projects in health care delivery more effective. This study is a retrospective analysis of process improvement projects in hospitals, facilitating a case-based reasoning approach to project definition. Data sources were project documentation and hospital-performance statistics of 271 Lean Six Sigma health care projects from 2002 to 2009 of general, teaching, and academic hospitals in the Netherlands and Belgium. Objectives and operational definitions of improvement projects in the sample, analyzed and structured in a uniform format and terminology. Extraction of reusable elements of earlier project definitions, presented in the form of 9 templates called generic project definitions. These templates function as exemplars for future process improvement projects, making the selection, definition, and operationalization of similar projects more efficient. Each template includes an explicated rationale, an operationalization in the form of metrics, and a prototypical example. Thus, a process of incremental and sustained learning based on case-based reasoning is facilitated. The quality of project definitions is a crucial success factor in pursuits to improve health care delivery. We offer 9 tried and tested improvement themes related to patient safety, patient satisfaction, and business-economic performance of hospitals.

  10. SCXTREME Framework: A Customized Approach of Process Improvements in Agile Blend with CMMI Practices in Pakistan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samina Jan

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available The proposed framework shows the customized approach that improves the software development process by using the Agile techniques. The proposed research work blends the CMMI practices according to Agile methods of development (specially Scrum, because Scrum is extremely used by Pakistani firms CMMI is a model for the process improvement within organization, but it is too expensive to implement all practices of CMMI for each level. So for small size organizations, at level 2, 3 there are some practices which are helpful in managing and defining their software development process. By implementing the proposed framework, organizations can improve their maturity and capability level.There are several problems while working on Agile, many management areas can be neglected. In SCXTREME there are eight process area selected from CMMI and fit them according to Agile, so agile can be suitable for Pakistani organization by implementing some process area at level 2 and level 3.

  11. The improvement of approaches to the classification of risks of industrial enterprises

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I.M. Posokhov

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this article. It is established that there is the lack of uniformity concerning the classification of industrial enterprises risks. It is analyzed the existing approaches to the classification of risks and it is singled out their advantages and disadvantages. The existing typology of industrial enterprises economic risks was supplemented with additional features, including internal and external risks according to the scope of display, according to the nature of emergence - objective and subjective with their further specification into subspecies, and that causes the new approach to the formation of risk classification system. The classification of industrial enterprises risks was improved. The results of the analysis. It was analyzed the existing approaches to the classification of risks, and it was singled out their advantages and disadvantages. The systematization of risks is based on the stages of the risk classification considering the principles of division and grouping, major functions, generalization, adjustment and addition the factors, main classified features, analysis of current approaches. The division of risks according to the scope of display, the nature of emergence and type of production activity into groups, types and subtypes causes the new approach to the formation of the risk classification system. An improved systematic approach to the risk classification reproduces the most likely risks of activities of industrial enterprise, that facilitates the timely usage of appropriate measures for reduction of their impact. A significant advantage of a systematic approach to the risk classification is the possibility of liquidation of features multiplicity, finding their rational place in the system of risks, affecting the activity of the enterprise. It was proposed to widen the risk classification by distinguishing the specific risks of industrial enterprises according to the classified feature “The sphere of

  12. An Innovative Approach for Improving the Reliability of Reticulated Porous Ceramics

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2002-01-01

    An innovative approach has been developed to fabricate reticulated porous ceramics (RPCs) with uniform macrostruc-ture by using the polymeric sponge as the templates. In this approach, the coating process comprises of two stages,In the first stage, the thicker slurry was used to coat uniformly the sponge substrate. The green body was preheatedto produce a reticulated preform with enough handling strength after the sponge was burned out. In the second stage,the thinner slurry was used to coat uniformly the preform. The population of the microscopic and macroscopic flawsin the structure is reduced significantly by recoating process. A few filled cells and cell faces occur in the fabricationand the struts were thickened. A statistical evaluation by means of Weibull statistics was carried out on the bendstrength data of RPCs, which were prepared by the traditional approach and innovative approach, respectively. Theresult shows that the mechanical reliability of RPCs is improved by the innovative approach. This innovative approachis very simple and controlled easily, and will open up new technological applications for RPCs.

  13. Using the Dynamic Model to develop an evidence-based and theory-driven approach to school improvement

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Creemers, B.P.M.; Kyriakides, L.

    2010-01-01

    This paper refers to a dynamic perspective of educational effectiveness and improvement stressing the importance of using an evidence-based and theory-driven approach. Specifically, an approach to school improvement based on the dynamic model of educational effectiveness is offered. The recommended

  14. 78 FR 10181 - Global Quality Systems-An Integrated Approach To Improving Medical Product Safety; Public Workshop

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-02-13

    ... ``Global Quality Systems--An Integrated Approach to Improving Medical Product Safety.'' This 2-day public... HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration Global Quality Systems--An Integrated Approach To Improving Medical Product Safety; Public Workshop AGENCY: Food and Drug Administration, HHS. ACTION: Notice of...

  15. Improving Students’ Vocabulary Mastery by Using Authentic Materials through Communicative Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Umar Umar

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available The research aimed at finding out whether or not using of authentic materials through communicative approach improves the vocabulary of the students. This applied a pre-experimental method. The population of the research was the second grades students of a state high school comprising four classes and one of which chosen as the sample by using purposive sampling. The sample consisted of thirty two. The data were collected by using vocabulary test that consisted 20 items. The proce4 of collecting data was presented in chronological order as pre-test given before treatment and then post-test was giving after treatment as students’ achievement. The data analysis showed that there was significant difference of the students’ vocabulary achievement after giving treatment by using authentic materials through communicative approach. It was proved by the mean score of pre-test was 5.97 and the mean of post-test was 7.82. The data was analyzed by using t-test was higher than t-table value. The value of t-test was 9, while t-table value was 1.695 at the 0.05 level significance. Based on the result above, the writer concludes that the use of authentic material through communicative approach improves the students’ vocabulary mastery.

  16. Edutourism Taka Bonerate National Park through Scientific Approach to Improve Student Learning Outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayati, R. S.

    2017-02-01

    This research aim is develop the potential of Taka Bonerate National Park as learning resources through edutourism with scientific approach to improve student learning outcomes. Focus of student learning outcomes are students psychomotor abilities and comprehension on Biodiversity of Marine Biota, Corals Ecosystem, and Conservation topics. The edutourism development products are teacher manual, edutourism worksheet, material booklet, guide’s manual, and Taka Bonerate National Park governor manual. The method to develop edutourism products is ADDIE research and development model that consist of analysis, design, development and production, implementation, and evaluation step. The subjects in the implementation step were given a pretest and posttest and observation sheet to see the effect of edutourism Taka Bonerate National Park through scientific approach to student learning outcomes on Biodiversity of Marine Biota, Corals Ecosystem, and Conservation topics. The data were analyzed qualitative descriptively. The research result is edutourism Taka Bonerate National Park through scientific approach can improve students learning outcomes on Biodiversity of Marine Biota, Corals Ecosystem, and Conservation topics. Edutourism Taka Bonerate National Park can be an alternative of learning method on Biodiversity of Marine Biota, Corals Ecosystem, and Conservation topics.

  17. Food control and a citizen science approach for improving teaching of Genetics in universities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borrell, Y J; Muñoz-Colmenero, A M; Dopico, E; Miralles, L; Garcia-Vazquez, E

    2016-09-10

    A Citizen Science approach was implemented in the laboratory practices of Genetics at the University of Oviedo, related with the engaging topic of Food Control. Real samples of food products consumed by students at home (students as samplers) were employed as teaching material in three different courses of Genetics during the academic year 2014-2015: Experimental Methods in Food Production (MBTA) (Master level), and Applied Molecular Biology (BMA) and Conservation Genetics and Breeding (COMGE) (Bachelor/Degree level). Molecular genetics based on PCR amplification of DNA markers was employed for species identification of 22 seafood products in COMGE and MBTA, and for detection of genetically modified (GM) maize from nine products in BMA. In total six seafood products incorrectly labeled (27%), and two undeclared GM maize (22%) were found. A post-Laboratory survey was applied for assessing the efficacy of the approach for improving motivation in the Laboratory Practices of Genetics. Results confirmed that students that worked on their own samples from local markets were significantly more motivated and better evaluated their Genetic laboratory practices than control students (χ(2)  = 12.11 p = 0.033). Our results suggest that citizen science approaches could not be only useful for improving teaching of Genetics in universities but also to incorporate students and citizens as active agents in food control. © 2016 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 44(5):450-462, 2016.

  18. AN EFFICIENT APPROACH TO IMPROVE ARABIC DOCUMENTS CLUSTERING BASED ON A NEW KEYPHRASES EXTRACTION ALGORITHM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hanane FROUD

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Document Clustering algorithms goal is to create clusters that are coherent internally, but clearly different from each other. The useful expressions in the documents is often accompanied by a large amount of noise that is caused by the use of unnecessary words, so it is indispensable to eliminate it and keeping just the useful information. Keyphrases extraction systems in Arabic are new phenomena. A number of Text Mining applications can use it to improve her results. The Keyphrases are defined as phrases that capture the main topics discussed in document; they offer a brief and precise summary of document content. Therefore, it can be a good solution to get rid of the existent noise from documents. In this paper, we propose a new method to solve the problem cited above especially for Arabic language documents, which is one of the most complex languages, by using a new Keyphrases extraction algorithm based on the Suffix Tree data structure (KpST. To evaluate our approach, we conduct an experimental study on Arabic Documents Clustering using the most popular approach of Hierarchical algorithms: Agglomerative Hierarchical algorithm with seven linkage techniques and a variety of distance functions and similarity measures to perform Arabic Document Clustering task. The obtained results show that our approach for extracting Keyphrases improves the clustering results.

  19. Improving efficiency and safety in external beam radiation therapy treatment delivery using a Kaizen approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kapur, Ajay; Adair, Nilda; O'Brien, Mildred; Naparstek, Nikoleta; Cangelosi, Thomas; Zuvic, Petrina; Joseph, Sherin; Meier, Jason; Bloom, Beatrice; Potters, Louis

    2017-06-29

    Modern external beam radiation therapy treatment delivery processes potentially increase the number of tasks to be performed by therapists and thus opportunities for errors, yet the need to treat a large number of patients daily requires a balanced allocation of time per treatment slot. The goal of this work was to streamline the underlying workflow in such time-interval constrained processes to enhance both execution efficiency and active safety surveillance using a Kaizen approach. A Kaizen project was initiated by mapping the workflow within each treatment slot for 3 Varian TrueBeam linear accelerators. More than 90 steps were identified, and average execution times for each were measured. The time-consuming steps were stratified into a 2 × 2 matrix arranged by potential workflow improvement versus the level of corrective effort required. A work plan was created to launch initiatives with high potential for workflow improvement but modest effort to implement. Time spent on safety surveillance and average durations of treatment slots were used to assess corresponding workflow improvements. Three initiatives were implemented to mitigate unnecessary therapist motion, overprocessing of data, and wait time for data transfer defects, respectively. A fourth initiative was implemented to make the division of labor by treating therapists as well as peer review more explicit. The average duration of treatment slots reduced by 6.7% in the 9 months following implementation of the initiatives (P = .001). A reduction of 21% in duration of treatment slots was observed on 1 of the machines (P Kaizen approach has the potential to improve operational efficiency and safety with quick turnaround in radiation therapy practice by addressing non-value-adding steps characteristic of individual department workflows. Higher effort opportunities are identified to guide continual downstream quality improvements. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  20. An Approach Model for Employees' Improving Quality of Work Life (IQWL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H Dargahi

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: Organizational features can affect how employers view on their QWL is an important consideration for employ­ees interested in improving employees' job satisfaction.The research reported here aimed to provide the processes used to investigate and implement a pathway for TUMS Employ­ees Improving of Quality of Work Life as an approach model.Methods: A Quality of Work Life Strategic Planning Committee was formed to focus on enhancing TUMS employees' qual­ity of work life. In the next step 30 QWL teams consisting of managers and employees were conducted in each of 15 as all of TUMS Hospitals. Committee members identified similar key themes of dissatisfaction. Based on the key themes identi­fied, a survey was developed by QWL Strategic Planning by the questionnaires which distributed to 942 employees and 755 of them were returned. The collected data were saved by SPSS software and analyzed by statistical method.Results: The results from the survey showed that the perceived strongest areas among 12 categories developed by QWL Strate­gic Planning Committee that employees agreed to improve on their QWL were communication, leadership monetary an non- monetary compensation and support. This committee evaluated the outcomes of QWL managers and employees teams to improve the employees, quality of work life at 15 TUMS Hospitals.Conclusion: The QWL Strategic Planning Committee recommend a new approach model to suggest the ways which impres­sive on the employees' improving QWL.

  1. A pragmatic approach to measuring, monitoring and evaluating interventions for improved tuberculosis case detection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blok, Lucie; Creswell, Jacob; Stevens, Robert; Brouwer, Miranda; Ramis, Oriol; Weil, Olivier; Klatser, Paul; Sahu, Suvanand; Bakker, Mirjam I

    2014-09-01

    The inability to detect all individuals with active tuberculosis has led to a growing interest in new approaches to improve case detection. Policy makers and program staff face important challenges measuring effectiveness of newly introduced interventions and reviewing feasibility of scaling-up successful approaches. While robust research will continue to be needed to document impact and influence policy, it may not always be feasible for all interventions and programmatic evidence is also critical to understand what can be expected in routine settings. The effects of interventions on early and improved tuberculosis detection can be documented through well-designed program evaluations. We present a pragmatic framework for evaluating and measuring the effect of improved case detection strategies using systematically collected intervention data in combination with routine tuberculosis notification data applying historical and contemporary controls. Standardized process evaluation and systematic documentation of program implementation design, cost and context will contribute to explaining observed levels of success and may help to identify conditions needed for success. Findings can then guide decisions on scale-up and replication in different target populations and settings. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

  2. A new data assimilation approach for improving runoff prediction using remotely-sensed soil moisture retrievals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. T. Crow

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available A number of recent studies have focused on enhancing runoff prediction via the assimilation of remotely-sensed surface soil moisture retrievals into a hydrologic model. The majority of these approaches have viewed the problem from purely a state or parameter estimation perspective in which remotely-sensed soil moisture estimates are assimilated to improve the characterization of pre-storm soil moisture conditions in a hydrologic model, and consequently, its simulation of runoff response to subsequent rainfall. However, recent work has demonstrated that soil moisture retrievals can also be used to filter errors present in satellite-based rainfall accumulation products. This result implies that soil moisture retrievals have potential benefit for characterizing both antecedent moisture conditions (required to estimate sub-surface flow intensities and subsequent surface runoff efficiencies and storm-scale rainfall totals (required to estimate the total surface runoff volume. In response, this work presents a new sequential data assimilation system that exploits remotely-sensed surface soil moisture retrievals to simultaneously improve estimates of both pre-storm soil moisture conditions and storm-scale rainfall accumulations. Preliminary testing of the system, via a synthetic twin data assimilation experiment based on the Sacramento hydrologic model and data collected from the Model Parameterization Experiment, suggests that the new approach is more efficient at improving stream flow predictions than data assimilation techniques focusing solely on the constraint of antecedent soil moisture conditions.

  3. Node Voltage Improvement by Capacitor Placement in Distribution Network : A Soft Computing Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SHWETA SARKAR,

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available This paper deals with a genetic algorithm based approach for determining the optimum placement location of capacitor in radial distribution system which is obtained after optimum reconfiguration. Reduction of total losses in distribution system is very essential to improve the overall efficiency of power delivery. This can be achieved by placing the optimal value of capacitors at proper ocations in radial distribution systems. The proposed methodologyis a genetic approach based algorithm. The best location of the capacitor and the sizing of the capacitor is determined based on genetic algorithm. The objective function is to place the optimal value of capacitors at best locations, which maximizes net savings in the distribution system. The proposed method directly gives the bestlocations and identifies the optimal size. Here we have tried the requirement by the use of genetic algorithm and further we have tried to improve the node voltages by placing the capacitor bank at susceptible load points. We have run load flow program developed in MATLAB environment on the optimum feeder layout obtained [10] and further we have tried to improve the node voltages of the network by trying the various combinations of capacitor bank. The fitness function of the chromosomes turns out to be the maximum of the minimum node voltages. Using GA the paper gives the optimum combination for replacement of capacitor for the best node voltages.The result is tested on single feeder network and the work has been carried out in MATLAB environment.

  4. Improving advanced cardiovascular life support skills in medical students: simulation-based education approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamidreza Reihani

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective: In this trial, we intend to assess the effect of simulation-based education approach on advanced cardiovascular life support skills among medical students. Methods: Through convenient sampling method, 40 interns of Mashhad University of Medical Sciences in their emergency medicine rotation (from September to December 2012 participated in this study. Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS workshops with pretest and post-test exams were performed. Workshops and checklists for pretest and post-test exams were designed according to the latest American Heart Association (AHA guidelines. Results: The total score of the students increased significantly after workshops (24.6 out of 100 to 78.6 out of 100. This demonstrates 53.9% improvement in the skills after the simulation-based education (P< 0.001. Also the mean score of each station had a significant improvement (P< 0.001. Conclusion: Pretests showed that interns had poor performance in practical clinical matters while their scientific knowledge, such as ECG interpretation was acceptable. The overall results of the study highlights that Simulation based-education approach is highly effective in Improving ACLS skills among medical students.

  5. An Approach to Improve the Representation of the User Model in the Web-Based Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yasser A. Nada

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available A major shortcoming of content-based approaches exists in the representation of the user model. Content-based approaches often employ term vectors to represent each user’s interest. In doing so, they ignore the semantic relations between terms of the vector space model in which indexed terms are not orthogonal and often have semantic relatedness between one another. In this paper, we improve the representation of a user model during building user model in content-based approaches by performing these steps. First is the domain concept filtering in which concepts and items of interests are compared to the domain ontology to check the relevant items to our domain using ontology based semantic similarity. Second, is incorporating semantic content into the term vectors. We use word definitions and relations provided by WordNet to perform word sense disambiguation and employ domain-specific concepts as category labels for the semantically enhanced user models. The implicit information pertaining to the user behavior was extracted from click stream data or web usage sessions captured within the web server logs. Also, our proposed approach aims to update user model, we should analysis user's history query keywords. For a certain keyword, we extract the words which have the semantic relationships with the keyword and add them into the user interest model as nodes according to semantic relationships in the WordNet.

  6. How to improve retromandibular transmasseteric anteroparotid approach for mandibular condylar fractures: our clinical experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salgarelli, A C; Anesi, A; Bellini, P; Pollastri, G; Tanza, D; Barberini, S; Chiarini, L

    2013-04-01

    Fractures of the mandibular condyle are common and account for 25-35% of all mandibular fractures reported in the literature. Even with the development of a consensus on the preference for open reduction and internal fixation of these fractures, the clinician is still faced with a dilemma concerning the optimal approach to the ramus-condyle unit. Limited access and injury to the facial nerve are the most common problems. The most commonly used extraoral approaches are the submandibular, retromandibular and preauricular methods. In this study, we propose a modified cosmetic preauricular incision with a short end in the neck, to improve the transmasseteric anteroparotid (TMAP) approach previously described by Wilson et al. in 2005. We retrospectively analysed 13 patients treated in our department for mandibular condylar fractures. Post-operative complications, occlusal status, interincisal opening and joint tenderness were evaluated at 3 months after surgery. The wider skin incision described here provides a convenient approach for open reduction and rigid internal fixation, and good results were obtained. The follow-up ranged from 6 to 40 months.

  7. Improving offshoring of low-budget agile software development using the dual-shore approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Jesper Riber; Hovmøller, Harald; Jørgensen, Michael Thorkild Nørgaard;

    2013-01-01

    of a particular agile offshoring process. Furthermore, the discussion leads to a modification of the original dual-shore approach to fit the characteristics of low-budget development projects. The article explains agile development and elaborates the four basic principles associated with it. The four principles......This paper examines how agile software development can be implemented in an offshore setting by introducing and testing the dual-shore approach. The topic is further enlightened by an analysis and discussion of an autoethnographic study proposing three specific suggestions for improvements...... are then used as a framework throughout the article. A short introduction to the terms outsourcing and offshoring is given, and it is illuminated how agile processes can be implemented into offshored development. The most common difficulties regarding agile offshoring are described and the dual-shore model...

  8. Improvement of the F-Perceptory Approach Through Management of Fuzzy Complex Geographic Objects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khalfi, B.; de Runz, C.; Faiz, S.; Akdag, H.

    2015-08-01

    In the real world, data is imperfect and in various ways such as imprecision, vagueness, uncertainty, ambiguity and inconsistency. For geographic data, the fuzzy aspect is mainly manifested in time, space and the function of objects and is due to a lack of precision. Therefore, the researchers in the domain emphasize the importance of modeling data structures in GIS but also their lack of adaptation to fuzzy data. The F-Perceptory approachh manages the modeling of imperfect geographic information with UML. This management is essential to maintain faithfulness to reality and to better guide the user in his decision-making. However, this approach does not manage fuzzy complex geographic objects. The latter presents a multiple object with similar or different geographic shapes. So, in this paper, we propose to improve the F-Perceptory approach by proposing to handle fuzzy complex geographic objects modeling. In a second step, we propose its transformation to the UML modeling.

  9. The urban harvest approach as framework and planning tool for improved water and resource cycles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leusbrock, I; Nanninga, T A; Lieberg, K; Agudelo-Vera, C M; Keesman, K J; Zeeman, G; Rijnaarts, H H M

    2015-01-01

    Water and resource availability in sufficient quantity and quality for anthropogenic needs represents one of the main challenges in the coming decades. To prepare for upcoming challenges such as increased urbanization and climate change related consequences, innovative and improved resource management concepts are indispensable. In recent years we have developed and applied the urban harvest approach (UHA). The UHA aims to model and quantify the urban water cycle on different temporal and spatial scales. This approach allowed us to quantify the impact of the implementation of water saving measures and new water treatment concepts in cities. In this paper we will introduce the UHA and its application for urban water cycles. Furthermore, we will show first results for an extension to energy cycles and highlight future research items (e.g. nutrients, water-energy-nexus).

  10. Improved master equation approach to quantum transport: From Born to self-consistent Born approximation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jin, Jinshuang, E-mail: jsjin@hznu.edu.cn [Department of Physics, Hangzhou Normal University, Hangzhou 310036 (China); Li, Jun [Department of Physics, Hangzhou Normal University, Hangzhou 310036 (China); College of Physics and Electronic Engineering, Dezhou University, Dezhou 253023 (China); Liu, Yu [State Key Laboratory for Superlattices and Microstructures, Institute of Semiconductors, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100083 (China); Li, Xin-Qi, E-mail: lixinqi@bnu.edu.cn [State Key Laboratory for Superlattices and Microstructures, Institute of Semiconductors, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100083 (China); Department of Physics, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875 (China); Department of Chemistry, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Kowloon (Hong Kong); Yan, YiJing, E-mail: yyan@ust.hk [Department of Chemistry, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Kowloon (Hong Kong); Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at the Microscale, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, Anhui 230026 (China)

    2014-06-28

    Beyond the second-order Born approximation, we propose an improved master equation approach to quantum transport under self-consistent Born approximation. The basic idea is to replace the free Green's function in the tunneling self-energy diagram by an effective reduced propagator under the Born approximation. This simple modification has remarkable consequences. It not only recovers the exact results for quantum transport through noninteracting systems under arbitrary voltages, but also predicts the challenging nonequilibrium Kondo effect. Compared to the nonequilibrium Green's function technique that formulates the calculation of specific correlation functions, the master equation approach contains richer dynamical information to allow more efficient studies for such as the shot noise and full counting statistics.

  11. Improved master equation approach to quantum transport: from Born to self-consistent Born approximation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Jinshuang; Li, Jun; Liu, Yu; Li, Xin-Qi; Yan, YiJing

    2014-06-28

    Beyond the second-order Born approximation, we propose an improved master equation approach to quantum transport under self-consistent Born approximation. The basic idea is to replace the free Green's function in the tunneling self-energy diagram by an effective reduced propagator under the Born approximation. This simple modification has remarkable consequences. It not only recovers the exact results for quantum transport through noninteracting systems under arbitrary voltages, but also predicts the challenging nonequilibrium Kondo effect. Compared to the nonequilibrium Green's function technique that formulates the calculation of specific correlation functions, the master equation approach contains richer dynamical information to allow more efficient studies for such as the shot noise and full counting statistics.

  12. [Comparison of three approaches to breed industrial Saccharomyces cerevisiae strains with improved ethanol tolerance].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Qian; Zhao, Xinqing; Kim, Jin-Soo; Bai, Fengwu

    2013-11-01

    Ethanol tolerance is related to the expression of multiple genes, and genome-based engineering approaches are much more efficient than manipulation of single genes. In this study, ultraviolet (UV) mutagenesis, dielectric barrier discharge (DBD) air plasma mutagenesis, and artificial transcription factor (ATF) technology were adopted to treat an industrial yeast strain S. cerevisiae Sc4126 to obtain mutants with improved ethanol tolerance. Mutants with high ethanol tolerance were obtained, and the ratio of positive mutants was compared. Among the three approaches, the rate of positive mutation obtained by ATF technology was 10- to 100-folds of that of the two other methods, with highest genetic stability, suggesting the ATF technology promising for rapid alteration of phenotypes of industry yeast strains for efficient ethanol fermentation.

  13. Novel, Web-based, information-exploration approach for improving operating room logistics and system processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagy, Paul G; Konewko, Ramon; Warnock, Max; Bernstein, Wendy; Seagull, Jacob; Xiao, Yan; George, Ivan; Park, Adrian

    2008-03-01

    Routine clinical information systems now have the ability to gather large amounts of data that surgical managers can access to create a seamless and proactive approach to streamlining operations and minimizing delays. The challenge lies in aggregating and displaying these data in an easily accessible format that provides useful, timely information on current operations. A Web-based, graphical dashboard is described in this study, which can be used to interpret clinical operational data, allow managers to see trends in data, and help identify inefficiencies that were not apparent with more traditional, paper-based approaches. The dashboard provides a visual decision support tool that assists managers in pinpointing areas for continuous quality improvement. The limitations of paper-based techniques, the development of the automated display system, and key performance indicators in analyzing aggregate delays, time, specialties, and teamwork are reviewed. Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats associated with implementing such a program in the perioperative environment are summarized.

  14. IMPROVEMENT OF THE F-PERCEPTORY APPROACH THROUGH MANAGEMENT OF FUZZY COMPLEX GEOGRAPHIC OBJECTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Khalfi

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available In the real world, data is imperfect and in various ways such as imprecision, vagueness, uncertainty, ambiguity and inconsistency. For geographic data, the fuzzy aspect is mainly manifested in time, space and the function of objects and is due to a lack of precision. Therefore, the researchers in the domain emphasize the importance of modeling data structures in GIS but also their lack of adaptation to fuzzy data. The F-Perceptory approachh manages the modeling of imperfect geographic information with UML. This management is essential to maintain faithfulness to reality and to better guide the user in his decision-making. However, this approach does not manage fuzzy complex geographic objects. The latter presents a multiple object with similar or different geographic shapes. So, in this paper, we propose to improve the F-Perceptory approach by proposing to handle fuzzy complex geographic objects modeling. In a second step, we propose its transformation to the UML modeling.

  15. An improved hazard rate twisting approach for the statistic of the sum of subexponential variates

    KAUST Repository

    Rached, Nadhir B.

    2015-01-01

    In this letter, we present an improved hazard rate twisting technique for the estimation of the probability that a sum of independent but not necessarily identically distributed subexponential Random Variables (RVs) exceeds a given threshold. Instead of twisting all the components in the summation, we propose to twist only the RVs which have the biggest impact on the right-tail of the sum distribution and keep the other RVs unchanged. A minmax approach is performed to determine the optimal twisting parameter which leads to an asymptotic optimality criterion. Moreover, we show through some selected simulation results that our proposed approach results in a variance reduction compared to the technique where all the components are twisted.

  16. A combined approach to cartographic displacement for buildings based on skeleton and improved elastic beam algorithm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yuangang; Guo, Qingsheng; Sun, Yageng; Ma, Xiaoya

    2014-01-01

    Scale reduction from source to target maps inevitably leads to conflicts of map symbols in cartography and geographic information systems (GIS). Displacement is one of the most important map generalization operators and it can be used to resolve the problems that arise from conflict among two or more map objects. In this paper, we propose a combined approach based on constraint Delaunay triangulation (CDT) skeleton and improved elastic beam algorithm for automated building displacement. In this approach, map data sets are first partitioned. Then the displacement operation is conducted in each partition as a cyclic and iterative process of conflict detection and resolution. In the iteration, the skeleton of the gap spaces is extracted using CDT. It then serves as an enhanced data model to detect conflicts and construct the proximity graph. Then, the proximity graph is adjusted using local grouping information. Under the action of forces derived from the detected conflicts, the proximity graph is deformed using the improved elastic beam algorithm. In this way, buildings are displaced to find an optimal compromise between related cartographic constraints. To validate this approach, two topographic map data sets (i.e., urban and suburban areas) were tested. The results were reasonable with respect to each constraint when the density of the map was not extremely high. In summary, the improvements include (1) an automated parameter-setting method for elastic beams, (2) explicit enforcement regarding the positional accuracy constraint, added by introducing drag forces, (3) preservation of local building groups through displacement over an adjusted proximity graph, and (4) an iterative strategy that is more likely to resolve the proximity conflicts than the one used in the existing elastic beam algorithm.

  17. Improving paediatric and neonatal care in rural district hospitals in the highlands of Papua New Guinea: a quality improvement approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sa'avu, Martin; Duke, Trevor; Matai, Sens

    2014-05-01

    incomplete. Infection control measures were inadequate in most hospitals. Cylinders were the major source of oxygen for the district hospitals, and logistical problems and large indirect costs meant that oxygen was under-utilized. There were multiple electricity interruptions, but hospitals had back-up generators to enable the use of oxygen concentrators. After 6 months in each of the five hospitals, high-dependency care areas were planned, oxygen concentrators installed, staff trained in their use, and a plan was set out for improving neonatal care. If MGD-4 targets for child health are to be met, reducing neonatal mortality and deaths from pneumonia will have to include better quality services in district hospitals. Establishing better oxygen supplies with a systems approach can be a vehicle for addressing other areas of quality and safety in district hospitals.

  18. Novel approaches to improving endothelium-dependent nitric oxide-mediated vasodilatation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Simonsen, Ulf; Rodriguez-Rodriguez, Rosalia; Dalsgaard, Thomas

    2009-01-01

    reacting with NO. Endothelial dysfunction is therapeutically reversible and physical exercise, calcium channel blockers, angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors, and angiotensin receptor antagonists improve flow-evoked endothelium-dependent vasodilation in patients with hypertension and diabetes. We have...... channels and an influx of calcium play an important role in G-protein coupled receptor-evoked release of NO. Thus, all three approaches increase bioavailability of NO in the vascular wall, but it remains to be addressed whether these actions have any direct benefit at a clinical level....

  19. How can LCA approaches contribute to improve geo-cycles management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carreiras, M.; Ferreira, A. J. D.; Esteves, T. C. J.; Delgado, F.; Andrade, F.; Franco, J.; Pereira, C. D.

    2012-04-01

    Climate change and land use have become a major challenge for mankind and the natural environment. Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions released into the atmosphere in ever rapidly growing volumes are most likely to be responsible for this change. Carbon dioxide gas (CO2) is suggested to be the main cause of global warming. Carbon reduction is the key to preventing this, for example, by enhancing energy efficiency and mitigating carbon emissions by means of green energy and adjusting the use of natural resources. Different activities produce distinguish impacts, and each product generates specific impacts on nature. The impact of man activities in the geo-cycles is of paramount importance in what concerns long term sustainability. Nevertheless, the environmental and sustainability impacts of different approaches and techniques of ecosystem management is a difficult question that can be assessed using LCA techniques LCA is a technique to assess environmental impacts associated with all the stages of a product's life from-cradle-to-grave. Based on that, LCA can be effective in supporting the assessment of decision making on complex sustainability issues because it can integrate the diversity of impacts categories guise and it can be adapted to a large variety of contexts. By incorporating quantitative data LCA allows decision makers to include a full range of economic, environmental, social and technical criteria. The integrated framework is configured such that the pros and cons of alternative environmental and energy strategies can be measured in terms of their ability to achieve the overall goals and objectives of the sustainable development, while satisfying the pollution control requirements. Because it is holistic, integrate and dynamic, this approach represents a state of the art tool for enhance the sustainable development of a sector, allowing a more transparent and participated management, a basic instrument for improved competitiveness. This approach may serve

  20. AN APPROACH TO THE QUALITY IMPROVEMENT OF A MASSIVE INVESTMENT PROJECT BY INTEGRATING ICT AND QMS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tamara Gvozdenovic

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available This work has presented an approach to the quality improvement of an investment project by the change in the concept of project management. Building time of the investment project is a complex factor which needs a special attention. It is well known that the PERT method has been applied with long-lasting investment projects, where a big time distance brings about significant uncertainty of future situations. Microsoft Project 2002 and Matlab: Neural Network Toolbox are the software tools used for solving the problem of investment project management.

  1. Organisational systems' approaches to improving cultural competence in healthcare: a systematic scoping review of the literature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCalman, Janya; Jongen, Crystal; Bainbridge, Roxanne

    2017-05-12

    Healthcare organisations serve clients from diverse Indigenous and other ethnic and racial groups on a daily basis, and require appropriate client-centred systems and services for provision of optimal healthcare. Despite advocacy for systems-level approaches to cultural competence, the primary focus in the literature remains on competency strategies aimed at health promotion initiatives, workforce development and student education. This paper aims to bridge the gap in available evidence about systems approaches to cultural competence by systematically mapping key concepts, types of evidence, and gaps in research. A literature search was completed as part of a larger systematic search of evaluations and measures of cultural competence interventions in health care in Canada, the United States, Australia and New Zealand. Seventeen peer-reviewed databases, 13 websites and clearinghouses, and 11 literature reviews were searched from 2002 to 2015. Overall, 109 studies were found, with 15 evaluating systems-level interventions or describing measurements. Thematic analysis was used to identify key implementation principles, intervention strategies and outcomes reported. Twelve intervention and three measurement studies met our inclusion criteria. Key principles for implementing systems approaches were: user engagement, organisational readiness, and delivery across multiple sites. Two key types of intervention strategies to embed cultural competence within health systems were: audit and quality improvement approaches and service-level policies or strategies. Outcomes were found for organisational systems, the client/practitioner encounter, health, and at national policy level. We could not determine the overall effectiveness of systems-level interventions to reform health systems because interventions were context-specific, there were too few comparative studies and studies did not use the same outcome measures. However, examined together, the intervention and measurement

  2. Modular Approach for Continuous Cell-Level Balancing to Improve Performance of Large Battery Packs: Preprint

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Muneed ur Rehman, M.; Evzelman, M.; Hathaway, K.; Zane, R.; Plett, G. L.; Smith, K.; Wood, E.; Maksimovic, D.

    2014-10-01

    Energy storage systems require battery cell balancing circuits to avoid divergence of cell state of charge (SOC). A modular approach based on distributed continuous cell-level control is presented that extends the balancing function to higher level pack performance objectives such as improving power capability and increasing pack lifetime. This is achieved by adding DC-DC converters in parallel with cells and using state estimation and control to autonomously bias individual cell SOC and SOC range, forcing healthier cells to be cycled deeper than weaker cells. The result is a pack with improved degradation characteristics and extended lifetime. The modular architecture and control concepts are developed and hardware results are demonstrated for a 91.2-Wh battery pack consisting of four series Li-ion battery cells and four dual active bridge (DAB) bypass DC-DC converters.

  3. Continuous quality improvement in acute health care: creating a holistic and integrated approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sewell, N

    1997-01-01

    Reviews the range of quality activity in a National Health Service hospital trust, using a staff questionnaire survey, self-assessment against the Baldrige Quality Award criteria, and the application of the SERVQUAL approach to service quality assessment. Reviews the acute health care quality programme literature. Finds that there are needs for greater integration of quality effort, to engage with patients in a more meaningful manner, and to achieve greater commitment and involvement from clinicians and managers. Identifies lack of time and resources as a major barrier to greater application of quality programmes. Explores ways of developing a more holistic and integrated programme of quality improvement. Describes the creation and implementation of a model for continuous improvement in health care quality.

  4. Precursor models construction at preschool education: an approach to improve scientific education in the classroom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SABRINA PATRICIA CANEDO- IBARRA

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to explore young children scientific precursor models construction and how the designed teaching strategy was successful for improving science learning at preschool in a social context. We describe how 6 years old children built a precursor model of flotation based on density. The exploratory study used a qualitative data collection and analysis following a pre-interview, instructional process and post-interview design. On analyzing children’s answers after the instructional period, we realized that several children were led to both the construction of a precursor model and a general qualitative upgrade in reasoning. We conclude that learning activities were effective and that the approach used in this study may help expand and improve teaching and learning of scientific concepts in preschool education

  5. Brief Survey of the Communicative Approach and the Strategy of Improving the Students' Communicative Competence

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    吴燕萍

    2012-01-01

      With the rapid development of economy and improvement position of English as an international lan-guage in our country,English teaching draw a lot of attention nowadays. In traditional English teaching,it's the teachers who manipulate everything in class,where students are seen as receivers of knowledge. Therefore,it lacks cooperation between teachers and students. Students have no opportunity to apply what they have learnt in class to practical com-munications. In this teachers-centered class,students are not able to bring themselves into ful play,which explains the low quality of English teaching in some schools and students fail to communicate with others after many years' learning. Based on the theory of Communicative Approach,the paper analyses its advantages and existing problems in application and proposes some strategy of improving students'Communicative Competence.

  6. A Model Predictive Control Approach for Fuel Economy Improvement of a Series Hydraulic Hybrid Vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tri-Vien Vu

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available This study applied a model predictive control (MPC framework to solve the cruising control problem of a series hydraulic hybrid vehicle (SHHV. The controller not only regulates vehicle velocity, but also engine torque, engine speed, and accumulator pressure to their corresponding reference values. At each time step, a quadratic programming problem is solved within a predictive horizon to obtain the optimal control inputs. The objective is to minimize the output error. This approach ensures that the components operate at high efficiency thereby improving the total efficiency of the system. The proposed SHHV control system was evaluated under urban and highway driving conditions. By handling constraints and input-output interactions, the MPC-based control system ensures that the system operates safely and efficiently. The fuel economy of the proposed control scheme shows a noticeable improvement in comparison with the PID-based system, in which three Proportional-Integral-Derivative (PID controllers are used for cruising control.

  7. Improved Kernel PLS-based Fault Detection Approach for Nonlinear Chemical Processes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    王丽; 侍洪波

    2014-01-01

    In this paper, an improved nonlinear process fault detection method is proposed based on modified ker-nel partial least squares (KPLS). By integrating the statistical local approach (SLA) into the KPLS framework, two new statistics are established to monitor changes in the underlying model. The new modeling strategy can avoid the Gaussian distribution assumption of KPLS. Besides, advantage of the proposed method is that the kernel latent variables can be obtained directly through the eigen value decomposition instead of the iterative calculation, which can improve the computing speed. The new method is applied to fault detection in the simulation benchmark of the Tennessee Eastman process. The simulation results show superiority on detection sensitivity and accuracy in com-parison to KPLS monitoring.

  8. Improving the throughput of cognitive radio networks using the broadcast approach

    KAUST Repository

    Sboui, Lokman

    2013-12-01

    We study the impact of adopting a multi layer coding (MLC) strategy, i.e., the so-called broadcast approach (BA) on the throughput of Cognitive Radio (CR) spectrum sharing systems for general fading channels. First, we consider a scenario where the secondary transmitter, a part from the statistics, has no channel state information (CSI) of the cross link and its own link. We show that using BA improves the cognitive achievable rate compared to the outage rate provided by a single layer coding (SLC). In addition, we, also, observe numerically that 2-Layer coding achieves most of the gain. Then, we consider a situation where the secondary transmitter has a partial CSI about its own link through quantized CSI. Again, we compute the secondary achievable rate adopting the BA and highlight the improvement over SLC. Numerical results show that the advantage of MLC decreases as the rate of the feedback link increases. 1 © 2013 IEEE.

  9. Performance improvement of the software development project using the Value Management approach

    CERN Document Server

    Salem-Mhamdia, Amel Ben Hadj

    2011-01-01

    Improving performance and delivering value for customers have become a central theme in business. The software industry has become an increasingly important sector for the economy growth in Tunisia. This study aims to show how using Value Management in the Tunisian software industry for project analysis gives new insight about true project value and performance. This new approach is considered as an appropriate tool for guiding the process of making decisions. It offers tools in order to analyze the service value from the customer and organization perspectives. The results showed that the VM allows to have better performance in the software development project by linking customer satisfaction and cost analysis. The present case shows to service managers how they can benchmark project function to reduce their costs and improve resource allocation taking into consideration what customers consider important during their overall service experience. It can identify best professional practices, orient decisions to ...

  10. A novel approach to improve digital signal performance by placement and routing with manual intervention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Guimei; Wu, Songbo; Wan, Min; Bao, Bin; Duan, Jing

    2015-04-01

    This paper describes how placement and routing with manual intervention to improve the digital signal performance. According to studying and analyzing the features of Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) devices which include chip architecture and timing characteristics, a new approach is presented that some key logic modules can be relocated reasonably with manual intervention after completing successful place-and-route automatically. An example is given to illustrate this method. In this example, in order to improve remote sensing Charge Coupled Device (CCD) camera performance, signal-skew and delays among CCD driving timing signals must be controlled accurately and easily. This method can make CCD driving timing signals obtain the zero-skew which means tCO (clock to out) values for all these signals are equal, and finally hardware tests are carried out and experiment results are measured precisely by oscilloscope.

  11. Integrated approach towards the application of horizontal wells to improve waterflooding performance. 1995 annual report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kelkar, M.; Liner, C.; Kerr, D.

    1996-06-01

    This annual report describes the progress during the third year of the project on Integrated Approach Towards the Application of Horizontal Wells to Improve Waterflooding Performance. This project is funded under the Department of Energy`s Class I program which is targeted towards improving the reservoir performance of mature oil fields located in fluvially dominated deltaic geological environments. The project involves using an integrated approach to characterize the reservoir followed by proposing an appropriate reservoir management strategy to improve the field performance. In the first stage of the project, the type of data we integrated include cross borehole seismic surveys, geological interpretation based on the logs and the cores, and the engineering information. In contrast, during the second stage of the project, we intend to use only conventional data to construct the reservoir description. This report covers the results of the implementation from the first stage of the project. It also discusses the work accomplished so far for the second stage of the project. The preliminary results look promising from the field implementation. The production from the Self Unit (location of Stage I) has increased by 35 bbls/day with additional increase anticipated with further implementation. Based on our understanding of the first stage, we hope to examine a greater area of the Glenn Pool field for additional increase in production. We have collected available core and log data and have finished the initial geological description. Although not a direct part of this project, we also have initiated a 3-D seismic survey of the area which should help us in improving the reservoir description.

  12. Quality initiatives: lean approach to improving performance and efficiency in a radiology department.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kruskal, Jonathan B; Reedy, Allen; Pascal, Laurie; Rosen, Max P; Boiselle, Phillip M

    2012-01-01

    Many hospital radiology departments are adopting "lean" methods developed in automobile manufacturing to improve operational efficiency, eliminate waste, and optimize the value of their services. The lean approach, which emphasizes process analysis, has particular relevance to radiology departments, which depend on a smooth flow of patients and uninterrupted equipment function for efficient operation. However, the application of lean methods to isolated problems is not likely to improve overall efficiency or to produce a sustained improvement. Instead, the authors recommend a gradual but continuous and comprehensive "lean transformation" of work philosophy and workplace culture. Fundamental principles that must consistently be put into action to achieve such a transformation include equal involvement of and equal respect for all staff members, elimination of waste, standardization of work processes, improvement of flow in all processes, use of visual cues to communicate and inform, and use of specific tools to perform targeted data collection and analysis and to implement and guide change. Many categories of lean tools are available to facilitate these tasks: value stream mapping for visualizing the current state of a process and identifying activities that add no value; root cause analysis for determining the fundamental cause of a problem; team charters for planning, guiding, and communicating about change in a specific process; management dashboards for monitoring real-time developments; and a balanced scorecard for strategic oversight and planning in the areas of finance, customer service, internal operations, and staff development. © RSNA, 2012.

  13. Using Vision System Technologies to Enable Operational Improvements for Low Visibility Approach and Landing Operations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kramer, Lynda J.; Ellis, Kyle K. E.; Bailey, Randall E.; Williams, Steven P.; Severance, Kurt; Le Vie, Lisa R.; Comstock, James R.

    2014-01-01

    Flight deck-based vision systems, such as Synthetic and Enhanced Vision System (SEVS) technologies, have the potential to provide additional margins of safety for aircrew performance and enable the implementation of operational improvements for low visibility surface, arrival, and departure operations in the terminal environment with equivalent efficiency to visual operations. To achieve this potential, research is required for effective technology development and implementation based upon human factors design and regulatory guidance. This research supports the introduction and use of Synthetic Vision Systems and Enhanced Flight Vision Systems (SVS/EFVS) as advanced cockpit vision technologies in Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) operations. Twelve air transport-rated crews participated in a motion-base simulation experiment to evaluate the use of SVS/EFVS in NextGen low visibility approach and landing operations. Three monochromatic, collimated head-up display (HUD) concepts (conventional HUD, SVS HUD, and EFVS HUD) and two color head-down primary flight display (PFD) concepts (conventional PFD, SVS PFD) were evaluated in a simulated NextGen Chicago O'Hare terminal environment. Additionally, the instrument approach type (no offset, 3 degree offset, 15 degree offset) was experimentally varied to test the efficacy of the HUD concepts for offset approach operations. The data showed that touchdown landing performance were excellent regardless of SEVS concept or type of offset instrument approach being flown. Subjective assessments of mental workload and situation awareness indicated that making offset approaches in low visibility conditions with an EFVS HUD or SVS HUD may be feasible.

  14. A novel approach for the improvement of ethanol fermentation by Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hou, L.; Cao, X.; Wang, C. [Tianjin Univ. of Science and Technology, Tianjin (China). Key Laboratory of Food Nutrition and Safety

    2010-06-15

    The partial substitution of fossil fuels with bioethanol has become an important strategy for the use of renewable energy. Ethanol production is generally achieved through fermentation of starch or sugar-based feedstock by Saccharomyces cerevisiae. In order to meet the growing demand for ethanol, there is a need for new yeast strains that can produce ethanol more efficiently and cost effectively. This paper presented a new genome engineering approach that was developed to improve ethanol production by S. cerevisiae. In this study, the aneuploid strain constructed on the base of tetraploid cells was shown to have favourable metabolic traits in very high gravity (VHG) fermentation with 300 g/L glucose as the carbon source. The tetraploid strain was constructed using the plasmid YCplac33-GHK, which comprised the HO gene encoding the site-specific HO endonucleases. The aneuploid strain, WT4-M, was chosen and screened once the tetraploid cells were treated with methyl benzimidazole-2-yl-carbamate to induce loss of mitotic chromosomes. The aneuploid strain WT4-M increased ethanol production as well as osmotic and thermal tolerance. The sugar to ethanol conversion rate also improved. It was concluded that this new approach is valuable for creating yeast strains with better fermentation characteristics. 25 refs., 3 figs.

  15. Qualitative evaluation: a critical and interpretative complementary approach to improve health programs and services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tayabas, Luz María Tejada; León, Teresita Castillo; Espino, Joel Monarrez

    2014-01-01

    This short essay aims at commenting on the origin, development, rationale, and main characteristics of qualitative evaluation (QE), emphasizing the value of this methodological tool to evaluate health programs and services. During the past decades, different approaches have come to light proposing complementary alternatives to appraise the performance of public health programs, mainly focusing on the implementation process involved rather than on measuring the impact of such actions. QE is an alternative tool that can be used to illustrate and understand the process faced when executing health programs. It can also lead to useful suggestions to modify its implementation from the stakeholders' perspectives, as it uses a qualitative approach that considers participants as reflective subjects, generators of meanings. This implies that beneficiaries become involved in an active manner in the evaluated phenomena with the aim of improving the health programs or services that they receive. With this work we want to encourage evaluators in the field of public health to consider the use of QE as a complementary tool for program evaluation to be able to identify areas of opportunity to improve programs' implementation processes from the perspective of intended beneficiaries.

  16. Novel approach for improving signal to noise ratio of seismic images

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    陈凤; 李金宗; 李冬冬

    2004-01-01

    A novel approach of digital image processing technology is applied to improve SNR of seismic images. At first,we analyze the characters of line-like texture in seismic images, and then a preprocessing method named 2 D tracing horizon filtering is designed. After that, the technology of optical flow analysis is adopted to calculate the displacement vectors of adjacent pixels between neighboring seismic images. At last, the novel image accumulation algorithms are proposed, which are applied to greatly improve SNR and definition of seismic images. The experimental results show that SNR of seismic section images with SNR of about 20 dB and 17 dB are increased 8 dB~9 dB under keeping signal energy 67%~80% by processing section images and 3dB~4dB under keeping signalenergy 80~90% by processing horizontal slice images. Thereby, the proposed novel approaches are very helpful to the correct seismic interpretation and have very important significance for seismic exploring.

  17. An Improved Artificial Bee Colony-Based Approach for Zoning Protected Ecological Areas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jing Shao

    Full Text Available China is facing ecological and environmental challenges as its urban growth rate continues to rise, and zoning protected ecological areas is recognized as an effective response measure. Zoning inherently involves both site attributes and aggregation attributes, and the combination of mathematical models and heuristic algorithms have proven advantageous. In this article, an improved artificial bee colony (IABC-based approach is proposed for zoning protected ecological areas at a regional scale. Three main improvements were made: the first is the use of multiple strategies to generate the initial bee population of a specific quality and diversity, the second is an exploitation search procedure to generate neighbor solutions combining "replace" and "alter" operations, and the third is a "swap" strategy to enable a local search for the iterative optimal solution. The IABC algorithm was verified using simulated data. Then it was applied to define an optimum scheme of protected ecological areas of Sanya (in the Hainan province of China, and a reasonable solution was obtained. Finally, a comparison experiment with other methods (agent-based land allocation model, ant colony optimization, and density slicing was conducted and demonstrated that the IABC algorithm was more effective and efficient than the other methods. Through this study, we aimed to provide a scientifically sound, practical approach for zoning procedures.

  18. Qualitative evaluation: A critical and interpretative complementary approach to improve health programs and services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tayabas, Luz María Tejada; León, Teresita Castillo; ESPINO, JOEL MONARREZ

    2014-01-01

    This short essay aims at commenting on the origin, development, rationale, and main characteristics of qualitative evaluation (QE), emphasizing the value of this methodological tool to evaluate health programs and services. During the past decades, different approaches have come to light proposing complementary alternatives to appraise the performance of public health programs, mainly focusing on the implementation process involved rather than on measuring the impact of such actions. QE is an alternative tool that can be used to illustrate and understand the process faced when executing health programs. It can also lead to useful suggestions to modify its implementation from the stakeholders’ perspectives, as it uses a qualitative approach that considers participants as reflective subjects, generators of meanings. This implies that beneficiaries become involved in an active manner in the evaluated phenomena with the aim of improving the health programs or services that they receive. With this work we want to encourage evaluators in the field of public health to consider the use of QE as a complementary tool for program evaluation to be able to identify areas of opportunity to improve programs’ implementation processes from the perspective of intended beneficiaries. PMID:25152220

  19. Qualitative evaluation: A critical and interpretative complementary approach to improve health programs and services

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luz MarÍa Tejada Tayabas

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available This short essay aims at commenting on the origin, development, rationale, and main characteristics of qualitative evaluation (QE, emphasizing the value of this methodological tool to evaluate health programs and services. During the past decades, different approaches have come to light proposing complementary alternatives to appraise the performance of public health programs, mainly focusing on the implementation process involved rather than on measuring the impact of such actions. QE is an alternative tool that can be used to illustrate and understand the process faced when executing health programs. It can also lead to useful suggestions to modify its implementation from the stakeholders’ perspectives, as it uses a qualitative approach that considers participants as reflective subjects, generators of meanings. This implies that beneficiaries become involved in an active manner in the evaluated phenomena with the aim of improving the health programs or services that they receive. With this work we want to encourage evaluators in the field of public health to consider the use of QE as a complementary tool for program evaluation to be able to identify areas of opportunity to improve programs’ implementation processes from the perspective of intended beneficiaries.

  20. Recommendations and Improvements for the Evaluation of Integrated Community-Wide Interventions Approaches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tessa M. van Koperen

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Background. Integrated community-wide intervention approaches (ICIAs are implemented to prevent childhood obesity. Programme evaluation improves these ICIAs, but professionals involved often struggle with performance. Evaluation tools have been developed to support Dutch professionals involved in ICIAs. It is unclear how useful these tools are to intended users. We therefore researched the facilitators of and barriers to ICIA programme evaluation as perceived by professionals and their experiences of the evaluation tools. Methods. Focus groups and interviews with 33 public health professionals. Data were analysed using a thematic content approach. Findings. Evaluation is hampered by insufficient time, budget, and experience with ICIAs, lack of leadership, and limited advocacy for evaluation. Epidemiologists are regarded as responsible for evaluation but feel incompetent to perform evaluation or advocate its need in a political environment. Managers did not prioritise process evaluations, involvement of stakeholders, and capacity building. The evaluation tools are perceived as valuable but too comprehensive considering limited resources. Conclusion. Evaluating ICIAs is important but most professionals are unfamiliar with it and management does not prioritise process evaluation nor incentivize professionals to evaluate. To optimise programme evaluation, more resources and coaching are required to improve professionals’ evaluation capabilities and specifically the use of evaluation.

  1. An Improved Artificial Bee Colony-Based Approach for Zoning Protected Ecological Areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shao, Jing; Yang, Lina; Peng, Ling; Chi, Tianhe; Wang, Xiaomeng

    2015-01-01

    China is facing ecological and environmental challenges as its urban growth rate continues to rise, and zoning protected ecological areas is recognized as an effective response measure. Zoning inherently involves both site attributes and aggregation attributes, and the combination of mathematical models and heuristic algorithms have proven advantageous. In this article, an improved artificial bee colony (IABC)-based approach is proposed for zoning protected ecological areas at a regional scale. Three main improvements were made: the first is the use of multiple strategies to generate the initial bee population of a specific quality and diversity, the second is an exploitation search procedure to generate neighbor solutions combining "replace" and "alter" operations, and the third is a "swap" strategy to enable a local search for the iterative optimal solution. The IABC algorithm was verified using simulated data. Then it was applied to define an optimum scheme of protected ecological areas of Sanya (in the Hainan province of China), and a reasonable solution was obtained. Finally, a comparison experiment with other methods (agent-based land allocation model, ant colony optimization, and density slicing) was conducted and demonstrated that the IABC algorithm was more effective and efficient than the other methods. Through this study, we aimed to provide a scientifically sound, practical approach for zoning procedures.

  2. Improving polygenic risk prediction from summary statistics by an empirical Bayes approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    So, Hon-Cheong; Sham, Pak C.

    2017-01-01

    Polygenic risk scores (PRS) from genome-wide association studies (GWAS) are increasingly used to predict disease risks. However some included variants could be false positives and the raw estimates of effect sizes from them may be subject to selection bias. In addition, the standard PRS approach requires testing over a range of p-value thresholds, which are often chosen arbitrarily. The prediction error estimated from the optimized threshold may also be subject to an optimistic bias. To improve genomic risk prediction, we proposed new empirical Bayes approaches to recover the underlying effect sizes and used them as weights to construct PRS. We applied the new PRS to twelve cardio-metabolic traits in the Northern Finland Birth Cohort and demonstrated improvements in predictive power (in R2) when compared to standard PRS at the best p-value threshold. Importantly, for eleven out of the twelve traits studied, the predictive performance from the entire set of genome-wide markers outperformed the best R2 from standard PRS at optimal p-value thresholds. Our proposed methodology essentially enables an automatic PRS weighting scheme without the need of choosing tuning parameters. The new method also performed satisfactorily in simulations. It is computationally simple and does not require assumptions on the effect size distributions. PMID:28145530

  3. Gait quality is improved by locomotor training in individuals with SCI regardless of training approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ter Hoeve Nienke

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background While various body weight supported locomotor training (BWSLT approaches are reported in the literature for individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI, none have evaluated outcomes in terms of gait quality. The purpose of this study was to compare changes in measures of gait quality associated with four different BWSLT approaches in individuals with chronic motor-incomplete SCI, and to identify how gait parameters differed from those of non-disabled (ND individuals. Methods Data were analyzed from 51 subjects with SCI who had been randomized into one of four BWSLT groups: treadmill with manual assistance (TM, treadmill with electrical stimulation (TS, overground with electrical stimulation (OG, treadmill with locomotor robot (LR. Subjects with SCI performed a 10-meter kinematic walk test before and after 12 weeks of training. Ten ND subjects performed the test under three conditions: walking at preferred speed, at speed comparable to subjects with SCI, and with a walker at comparable speed. Six kinematic gait quality parameters were calculated including: cadence, step length, stride length, symmetry index, intralimb coordination, and timing of knee extension. Results In subjects with SCI, all training approaches were associated with improvements in gait quality. After training, subjects with SCI walked at higher cadence and had longer step and stride lengths. No significant differences were found among training groups, however there was an interaction effect indicating that step and stride length improved least in the LR group. Compared to when walking at preferred speed, gait quality of ND subjects was significantly different when walking at speeds comparable to those of the subjects with SCI (both with and without a walker. Post training, gait quality measures of subjects with SCI were more similar to those of ND subjects. Conclusion BWSLT leads to improvements in gait quality (values closer to ND subjects regardless of

  4. Health-promoting schools: evidence for a holistic approach to promoting health and improving health literacy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Albert

    2009-01-01

    Chronic diseases are now the major causes of death and disability worldwide, and non-communicable diseases (NCD) account for the majority of the global health burden. About half of premature deaths are related to health-risking behaviours that are often established during youth and extend to adulthood. While these diseases might not be curable, they are preventable. Prevention is possible when sustained actions are directed at individuals and families, as well as at the broader social, economic and cultural determinants of NCD. A 'life-course' approach to promoting healthy behaviour should begin early in life. The aim of this article is to discuss the impact of the 'health-promoting school' (HPS) on improvements in youth health. HPS can be described as a holistic, whole-school approach in which a broad health education curriculum is supported by the environment and ethos of the school. HPS moves beyond individual behavioural change to consider organizational and policy change such as improving the physical and social environment of the school, as well as its curricula and teaching and learning methods. A positive culture for health would facilitate higher levels of health literacy by helping individuals tackle the determinants of health better as they build the personal, cognitive and social skills for maintaining good health. There is reasonable evidence to demonstrate that the whole-school approach using the HPS framework is effective in improving health, ranging from physical activities and healthy eating to emotional health. Schools adopting the HPS framework have demonstrated changes in culture and organizational practice to become more conducive to health improvement. These schools were reported to have better school health policies, higher degrees of community participation, and a more hygienic environment than non-HPS schools, and students in these schools had a more positive health behaviour profile. Health promotion and disease prevention is essential to

  5. An Improved Incremental Learning Approach for KPI Prognosis of Dynamic Fuel Cell System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Shen; Xie, Xiaochen; Lam, James; Cheung, Kie Chung; Gao, Huijun

    2016-12-01

    The key performance indicator (KPI) has an important practical value with respect to the product quality and economic benefits for modern industry. To cope with the KPI prognosis issue under nonlinear conditions, this paper presents an improved incremental learning approach based on available process measurements. The proposed approach takes advantage of the algorithm overlapping of locally weighted projection regression (LWPR) and partial least squares (PLS), implementing the PLS-based prognosis in each locally linear model produced by the incremental learning process of LWPR. The global prognosis results including KPI prediction and process monitoring are obtained from the corresponding normalized weighted means of all the local models. The statistical indicators for prognosis are enhanced as well by the design of novel KPI-related and KPI-unrelated statistics with suitable control limits for non-Gaussian data. For application-oriented purpose, the process measurements from real datasets of a proton exchange membrane fuel cell system are employed to demonstrate the effectiveness of KPI prognosis. The proposed approach is finally extended to a long-term voltage prediction for potential reference of further fuel cell applications.

  6. A multi-criteria optimization and decision-making approach for improvement of food engineering processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alik Abakarov

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to propose a multi-criteria optimization and decision-making technique to solve food engineering problems. This technique was demonstrated using experimental data obtained on osmotic dehydration of carrot cubes in a sodium chloride solution. The Aggregating Functions Approach, the Adaptive Random Search Algorithm, and the Penalty Functions Approach were used in this study to compute the initial set of non-dominated or Pareto-optimal solutions. Multiple non-linear regression analysis was performed on a set of experimental data in order to obtain particular multi-objective functions (responses, namely water loss, solute gain, rehydration ratio, three different colour criteria of rehydrated product, and sensory evaluation (organoleptic quality. Two multi-criteria decision-making approaches, the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP and the Tabular Method (TM, were used simultaneously to choose the best alternative among the set of non-dominated solutions. The multi-criteria optimization and decision-making technique proposed in this study can facilitate the assessment of criteria weights, giving rise to a fairer, more consistent, and adequate final compromised solution or food process. This technique can be useful to food scientists in research and education, as well as to engineers involved in the improvement of a variety of food engineering processes.

  7. Improving oil classification quality from oil spill fingerprint beyond six sigma approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juahir, Hafizan; Ismail, Azimah; Mohamed, Saiful Bahri; Toriman, Mohd Ekhwan; Kassim, Azlina Md; Zain, Sharifuddin Md; Ahmad, Wan Kamaruzaman Wan; Wah, Wong Kok; Zali, Munirah Abdul; Retnam, Ananthy; Taib, Mohd Zaki Mohd; Mokhtar, Mazlin

    2017-07-15

    This study involves the use of quality engineering in oil spill classification based on oil spill fingerprinting from GC-FID and GC-MS employing the six-sigma approach. The oil spills are recovered from various water areas of Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah (East Malaysia). The study approach used six sigma methodologies that effectively serve as the problem solving in oil classification extracted from the complex mixtures of oil spilled dataset. The analysis of six sigma link with the quality engineering improved the organizational performance to achieve its objectivity of the environmental forensics. The study reveals that oil spills are discriminated into four groups' viz. diesel, hydrocarbon fuel oil (HFO), mixture oil lubricant and fuel oil (MOLFO) and waste oil (WO) according to the similarity of the intrinsic chemical properties. Through the validation, it confirmed that four discriminant component, diesel, hydrocarbon fuel oil (HFO), mixture oil lubricant and fuel oil (MOLFO) and waste oil (WO) dominate the oil types with a total variance of 99.51% with ANOVA giving Fstat>Fcritical at 95% confidence level and a Chi Square goodness test of 74.87. Results obtained from this study reveals that by employing six-sigma approach in a data-driven problem such as in the case of oil spill classification, good decision making can be expedited. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  8. Towards an improved ensemble precipitation forecast: A probabilistic post-processing approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khajehei, Sepideh; Moradkhani, Hamid

    2017-03-01

    Recently, ensemble post-processing (EPP) has become a commonly used approach for reducing the uncertainty in forcing data and hence hydrologic simulation. The procedure was introduced to build ensemble precipitation forecasts based on the statistical relationship between observations and forecasts. More specifically, the approach relies on a transfer function that is developed based on a bivariate joint distribution between the observations and the simulations in the historical period. The transfer function is used to post-process the forecast. In this study, we propose a Bayesian EPP approach based on copula functions (COP-EPP) to improve the reliability of the precipitation ensemble forecast. Evaluation of the copula-based method is carried out by comparing the performance of the generated ensemble precipitation with the outputs from an existing procedure, i.e. mixed type meta-Gaussian distribution. Monthly precipitation from Climate Forecast System Reanalysis (CFS) and gridded observation from Parameter-Elevation Relationships on Independent Slopes Model (PRISM) have been employed to generate the post-processed ensemble precipitation. Deterministic and probabilistic verification frameworks are utilized in order to evaluate the outputs from the proposed technique. Distribution of seasonal precipitation for the generated ensemble from the copula-based technique is compared to the observation and raw forecasts for three sub-basins located in the Western United States. Results show that both techniques are successful in producing reliable and unbiased ensemble forecast, however, the COP-EPP demonstrates considerable improvement in the ensemble forecast in both deterministic and probabilistic verification, in particular in characterizing the extreme events in wet seasons.

  9. Improved Wetland Classification Using Eight-Band High Resolution Satellite Imagery and a Hybrid Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charles R. Lane

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Although remote sensing technology has long been used in wetland inventory and monitoring, the accuracy and detail level of wetland maps derived with moderate resolution imagery and traditional techniques have been limited and often unsatisfactory. We explored and evaluated the utility of a newly launched high-resolution, eight-band satellite system (Worldview-2; WV2 for identifying and classifying freshwater deltaic wetland vegetation and aquatic habitats in the Selenga River Delta of Lake Baikal, Russia, using a hybrid approach and a novel application of Indicator Species Analysis (ISA. We achieved an overall classification accuracy of 86.5% (Kappa coefficient: 0.85 for 22 classes of aquatic and wetland habitats and found that additional metrics, such as the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index and image texture, were valuable for improving the overall classification accuracy and particularly for discriminating among certain habitat classes. Our analysis demonstrated that including WV2’s four spectral bands from parts of the spectrum less commonly used in remote sensing analyses, along with the more traditional bandwidths, contributed to the increase in the overall classification accuracy by ~4% overall, but with considerable increases in our ability to discriminate certain communities. The coastal band improved differentiating open water and aquatic (i.e., vegetated habitats, and the yellow, red-edge, and near-infrared 2 bands improved discrimination among different vegetated aquatic and terrestrial habitats. The use of ISA provided statistical rigor in developing associations between spectral classes and field-based data. Our analyses demonstrated the utility of a hybrid approach and the benefit of additional bands and metrics in providing the first spatially explicit mapping of a large and heterogeneous wetland system.

  10. Molecular approaches to improvement of Jatropha curcas Linn. as a sustainable energy crop.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sudhakar Johnson, T; Eswaran, Nalini; Sujatha, M

    2011-09-01

    With the increase in crude oil prices, climate change concerns and limited reserves of fossil fuel, attention has been diverted to alternate renewable energy sources such as biofuel and biomass. Among the potential biofuel crops, Jatropha curcas L, a non-domesticated shrub, has been gaining importance as the most promising oilseed, as it does not compete with the edible oil supplies. Economic relevance of J. curcas for biodiesel production has promoted world-wide prospecting of its germplasm for crop improvement and breeding. However, lack of adequate genetic variation and non-availability of improved varieties limited its prospects of being a successful energy crop. In this review, we present the progress made in molecular breeding approaches with particular reference to tissue culture and genetic transformation, genetic diversity assessment using molecular markers, large-scale transcriptome and proteome studies, identification of candidate genes for trait improvement, whole genome sequencing and the current interest by various public and private sector companies in commercial-scale cultivation, which highlights the revival of Jatropha as a sustainable energy crop. The information generated from molecular markers, transcriptome profiling and whole genome sequencing could accelerate the genetic upgradation of J. curcas through molecular breeding.

  11. Integrating experimental and analytic approaches to improve data quality in genome-wide RNAi screens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Xiaohua Douglas; Espeseth, Amy S; Johnson, Eric N; Chin, Jayne; Gates, Adam; Mitnaul, Lyndon J; Marine, Shane D; Tian, Jenny; Stec, Eric M; Kunapuli, Priya; Holder, Dan J; Heyse, Joseph F; Strulovici, Berta; Ferrer, Marc

    2008-06-01

    RNA interference (RNAi) not only plays an important role in drug discovery but can also be developed directly into drugs. RNAi high-throughput screening (HTS) biotechnology allows us to conduct genome-wide RNAi research. A central challenge in genome-wide RNAi research is to integrate both experimental and computational approaches to obtain high quality RNAi HTS assays. Based on our daily practice in RNAi HTS experiments, we propose the implementation of 3 experimental and analytic processes to improve the quality of data from RNAi HTS biotechnology: (1) select effective biological controls; (2) adopt appropriate plate designs to display and/or adjust for systematic errors of measurement; and (3) use effective analytic metrics to assess data quality. The applications in 5 real RNAi HTS experiments demonstrate the effectiveness of integrating these processes to improve data quality. Due to the effectiveness in improving data quality in RNAi HTS experiments, the methods and guidelines contained in the 3 experimental and analytic processes are likely to have broad utility in genome-wide RNAi research.

  12. Improving Quality of Life in Nursing Homes: The Structured Resident Interview Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Howard B. Degenholtz

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The quality of life (QOL of the approximately 1.5 million nursing facility (NF residents in the US is undoubtedly lower than desired by residents, families, providers, and policy makers. Although there have been important advances in defining and measuring QOL for this population, there is a need for interventions that are tied to standardized measurement and quality improvement programs. This paper describes the development and testing of a structured, tailored assessment and care planning process for improving the QOL of nursing home residents. The Quality of Life Structured Resident Interview and Care Plan (QOL.SRI/CP builds on a decade of research on measuring QOL and is designed to be easily implemented in any US nursing home. The approach was developed through extensive and iterative pilot testing and then tested in a randomized controlled trial in three nursing homes. Residents were randomly assigned to receive the assessment alone or both the assessment and an individualized QOL care plan task. The results show that residents assigned to the intervention group experienced improved QOL at 90- and 180-day follow-up, while QOL of residents in the control group was unchanged.

  13. Therapeutic Approach in the Improvement of Endothelial Dysfunction: The Current State of the Art

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miroslav Radenković

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The endothelium has a central role in the regulation of blood flow through continuous modulation of vascular tone. This is primarily accomplished by balanced release of endothelial relaxing and contractile factors. The healthy endothelial cells are essential for maintenance of vascular homeostasis involving antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, pro-fibrinolytic, anti-adhesive, or anticoagulant effects. Oppositely, endothelial dysfunction is primarily characterized by impaired regulation of vascular tone as a result of reduced endothelial nitric oxide (NO synthase activity, lack of cofactors for NO synthesis, attenuated NO release, or increased NO degradation. So far, the pharmacological approach in improving/reversal of endothelial dysfunction was shown to be beneficial in clinical trials that have investigated actions of different cardiovascular drugs. The aim of this paper was to summarize some of the latest clinical findings related to therapeutic possibilities for improving endothelial dysfunction in different pathological conditions. In the majority of presented clinical investigations, the assessment of improvement or reversal of endothelial dysfunction was performed through the flow-mediated dilatation measurement, and in some of those endothelial progenitor cells’ count was used for the same purpose. Still, given the fast and continuous development of this field, the evidence acquisition included the MEDLINE data base screening and the selection of articles published between 2010 and 2012.

  14. Improving Quality of Life in Nursing Homes: The Structured Resident Interview Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Degenholtz, Howard B.; Resnick, Abby L.; Chia, Lichun

    2014-01-01

    The quality of life (QOL) of the approximately 1.5 million nursing facility (NF) residents in the US is undoubtedly lower than desired by residents, families, providers, and policy makers. Although there have been important advances in defining and measuring QOL for this population, there is a need for interventions that are tied to standardized measurement and quality improvement programs. This paper describes the development and testing of a structured, tailored assessment and care planning process for improving the QOL of nursing home residents. The Quality of Life Structured Resident Interview and Care Plan (QOL.SRI/CP) builds on a decade of research on measuring QOL and is designed to be easily implemented in any US nursing home. The approach was developed through extensive and iterative pilot testing and then tested in a randomized controlled trial in three nursing homes. Residents were randomly assigned to receive the assessment alone or both the assessment and an individualized QOL care plan task. The results show that residents assigned to the intervention group experienced improved QOL at 90- and 180-day follow-up, while QOL of residents in the control group was unchanged. PMID:25371822

  15. Can we improve service efficiency in CAMHS using the CAPA approach without reducing treatment effectiveness?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuggle, Peter; McHugh, Annie; Gore, Lucy; Dixon, Emily; Curran, Daniel; Cutinha, Darren

    2016-06-01

    Health-care systems are under increasing pressure to deliver more care with similar or even less resources and there is concern that this may be achieved at the cost of reduced clinical effectiveness. In Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS), the Choice and Partnership Approach (CAPA) has been widely adopted as a way of increasing the efficient use of limited service resources. Some evaluations have reported increased patient flow and reduced waiting times, but it remains unknown whether such changes have been achieved at a cost of clinical effectiveness. This article describes a pragmatic multi-method evaluation of a CAMHS service reporting service outcomes (client satisfaction, waiting times, and patient flow) and clinical outcomes (clinician-rated clinical outcomes and goals achieved by families). Results showed improved service outcomes (high levels of client satisfaction and reduced waiting times) and an increase in patient flow (49 cases increased to 72 cases over an equivalent time period). Clinical outcomes showed no reduction in effectiveness and a significant improvement against the agreed goals of the intervention. The evaluation suggested that a well-structured goal-focused patient flow system may improve services by increasing patient flow while maintaining high satisfaction levels, without negatively impacting clinical effectiveness.

  16. The Business Change Initiative: A Novel Approach to Improved Cost and Schedule Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shinn, Stephen A.; Bryson, Jonathan; Klein, Gerald; Lunz-Ruark, Val; Majerowicz, Walt; McKeever, J.; Nair, Param

    2016-01-01

    Goddard Space Flight Center's Flight Projects Directorate employed a Business Change Initiative (BCI) to infuse a series of activities coordinated to drive improved cost and schedule performance across Goddard's missions. This sustaining change framework provides a platform to manage and implement cost and schedule control techniques throughout the project portfolio. The BCI concluded in December 2014, deploying over 100 cost and schedule management changes including best practices, tools, methods, training, and knowledge sharing. The new business approach has driven the portfolio to improved programmatic performance. The last eight launched GSFC missions have optimized cost, schedule, and technical performance on a sustained basis to deliver on time and within budget, returning funds in many cases. While not every future mission will boast such strong performance, improved cost and schedule tools, management practices, and ongoing comprehensive evaluations of program planning and control methods to refine and implement best practices will continue to provide a framework for sustained performance. This paper will describe the tools, techniques, and processes developed during the BCI and the utilization of collaborative content management tools to disseminate project planning and control techniques to ensure continuous collaboration and optimization of cost and schedule management in the future.

  17. A comprehensive approach for diagnosing opportunities for improving the performance of a WWTP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, C; Matos, J Saldanha; Rosa, M J

    2016-12-01

    High quality services of wastewater treatment require a continuous assessment and improvement of the technical, environmental and economic performance. This paper demonstrates a comprehensive approach for benchmarking wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs), using performance indicators (PIs) and indices (PXs), in a 'plan-do-check-act' cycle routine driven by objectives. The performance objectives herein illustrated were to diagnose the effectiveness and energy performance of an oxidation ditch WWTP. The PI and PX results demonstrated an effective and reliable oxidation ditch (good-excellent performance), and a non-reliable UV disinfection (unsatisfactory-excellent performance) related with influent transmittance and total suspended solids. The energy performance increased with the treated wastewater volume and was unsatisfactory below 50% of plant capacity utilization. The oxidation ditch aeration performed unsatisfactorily and represented 38% of the plant energy consumption. The results allowed diagnosing opportunities for improving the energy and economic performance considering the influent flows, temperature and concentrations, and for levering the WWTP performance to acceptable-good effectiveness, reliability and energy efficiency. Regarding the plant reliability for fecal coliforms, improvement of UV lamp maintenance and optimization of the UV dose applied and microscreen recommissioning were suggested.

  18. Improving classroom quality with the RULER Approach to Social and Emotional Learning: proximal and distal outcomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagelskamp, Carolin; Brackett, Marc A; Rivers, Susan E; Salovey, Peter

    2013-06-01

    The RULER Approach to Social and Emotional Learning ("RULER") is designed to improve the quality of classroom interactions through professional development and classroom curricula that infuse emotional literacy instruction into teaching-learning interactions. Its theory of change specifies that RULER first shifts the emotional qualities of classrooms, which are then followed, over time, by improvements in classroom organization and instructional support. A 2-year, cluster randomized controlled trial was conducted to test hypotheses derived from this theory. Sixty-two urban schools either integrated RULER into fifth- and sixth-grade English language arts (ELA) classrooms or served as comparison schools, using their standard ELA curriculum only. Results from multilevel modeling with baseline adjustments and structural equation modeling support RULER's theory of change. Compared to classrooms in comparison schools, classrooms in RULER schools exhibited greater emotional support, better classroom organization, and more instructional support at the end of the second year of program delivery. Improvements in classroom organization and instructional support at the end of Year 2 were partially explained by RULER's impacts on classroom emotional support at the end of Year 1. These findings highlight the important contribution of emotional literacy training and development in creating engaging, empowering, and productive learning environments.

  19. Improvements on a non-invasive, parameter-free approach to inverse form finding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landkammer, P.; Caspari, M.; Steinmann, P.

    2017-08-01

    Our objective is to determine the optimal undeformed workpiece geometry (material configuration) within forming processes when the prescribed deformed geometry (spatial configuration) is given. For solving the resulting shape optimization problem—also denoted as inverse form finding—we use a novel parameter-free approach, which relocates in each iteration the material nodal positions as design variables. The spatial nodal positions computed by an elasto-plastic finite element (FE) forming simulation are compared with their prescribed values. The objective function expresses a least-squares summation of the differences between the computed and the prescribed nodal positions. Here, a recently developed shape optimization approach (Landkammer and Steinmann in Comput Mech 57(2):169-191, 2016) is investigated with a view to enhance its stability and efficiency. Motivated by nonlinear optimization theory a detailed justification of the algorithm is given. Furthermore, a classification according to shape changing design, fixed and controlled nodal coordinates is introduced. Two examples with large elasto-plastic strains demonstrate that using a superconvergent patch recovery technique instead of a least-squares (L2 )-smoothing improves the efficiency. Updating the interior discretization nodes by solving a fictitious elastic problem also reduces the number of required FE iterations and avoids severe mesh distortions. Furthermore, the impact of the inclusion of the second deformation gradient in the Hessian of the Quasi-Newton approach is analyzed. Inverse form finding is a crucial issue in metal forming applications. As a special feature, the approach is designed to be coupled in a non-invasive fashion to arbitrary FE software.

  20. A Holistic Quality Evaluation, Selection and Improvement Approach driven by Multilevel Goals and Strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Belen Rivera

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Organizations should establish business goals and check for their achievement in a systematic and disciplined way. In order to know if a business goal is achieved, it should be necessary to consider information need goals that also can require satisfying measurement and evaluation goals at operational level. Furthermore, if measurement and evaluation goals are not aligned with top-level business goals such as tactical or strategic level goals, the organization could waste its effort and resources. Usually, the different goals established in an organization are operationalized through projects. For a given project, strategies should be used in order to help in the goal achievement. A strategy defines a set of activities and methods to be followed for a specific goal purpose. Ultimately, to engineering all these issues in a systematic way, organizations should adopt a holistic evaluation approach supported by a set of integrated strategies. By means of a systematic literature review as research method, we have observed that very few approaches support integrated strategies and multilevel goals. To bridge this gap, we have developed a holistic quality multilevel and multipurpose evaluation approach that ties together multilevel goals, projects and integrated strategies. As contributions, this paper discusses an enhanced conceptual base (specified by ontologies for linking business and information need goal concepts with project, strategy and nonfunctional requirements concepts. Then, it defines the step by step of our holistic quality evaluation approach, by listing the necessary activities to establish goals and projects at different organizational levels. Lastly, it specifies and illustrates evaluation scenarios for business/information need goal purposes such as understanding, improving, monitoring and controlling, comparing and selecting entities, which are supported by strategies and strategy patterns.

  1. A multicriteria decision making approach applied to improving maintenance policies in healthcare organizations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carnero, María Carmen; Gómez, Andrés

    2016-04-23

    decision-making group. This approach is better suited to actual health care organization practice and depending on the subsystem analysed, improvements are introduced that are not included in normal maintenance policies; in this way, not only have different maintenance policies been suggested, but also alternatives that, in each case and according to viability, provide a more complete decision tool for the maintenance manager.

  2. Replicating effective pedagogical approaches from introductory physics to improve student learning of quantum mechanics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sayer, Ryan Thomas

    Upper-level undergraduate students entering a quantum mechanics (QM) course are in many ways similar to students entering an introductory physics course. Numerous studies have investigated the difficulties that novices face in introductory physics as well as the pedagogical approaches that are effective in helping them overcome those difficulties. My research focuses on replicating effective approaches and instructional strategies used in introductory physics courses to help advanced students in an upper-level QM course. I have investigated the use of Just-in-time Teaching (JiTT) and peer discussion involving clicker questions in an upper-level quantum mechanics course. The JiTT approach including peer discussions was effective in helping students overcome their difficulties and improve their understanding of QM concepts. Learning tools, such as a Quantum Interactive Learning Tutorial (QuILT) based on the Doubleslit Experiment (DSE) which I helped develop, have been successful in helping upper-level undergraduate students improve their understanding of QM. Many students have also demonstrated the ability to transfer knowledge from a QuILT based on the Mach-Zehnder interferometer while working on the DSE QuILT. In addition, I have been involved in implementing research-based activities during our semester-long professional development course for teaching assistants (TAs). In one intervention, TAs were asked to grade student solutions to introductory physics problems first using their choice of method, then again using a rubric designed to promote effective problem-solving approaches, then once more at the end of the semester using their choice of method. This intervention found that many TAs have ingrained beliefs about the purposes of grading which include placing the burden of proof on the instructor as well as a belief that grading cannot serve as a formative assessment. I also compared TAs grading practices and considerations when grading student solutions to QM

  3. A cost-efficiency and health benefit approach to improve urban air quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miranda, A I; Ferreira, J; Silveira, C; Relvas, H; Duque, L; Roebeling, P; Lopes, M; Costa, S; Monteiro, A; Gama, C; Sá, E; Borrego, C; Teixeira, J P

    2016-11-01

    When ambient air quality standards established in the EU Directive 2008/50/EC are exceeded, Member States are obliged to develop and implement Air Quality Plans (AQP) to improve air quality and health. Notwithstanding the achievements in emission reductions and air quality improvement, additional efforts need to be undertaken to improve air quality in a sustainable way - i.e. through a cost-efficiency approach. This work was developed in the scope of the recently concluded MAPLIA project "Moving from Air Pollution to Local Integrated Assessment", and focuses on the definition and assessment of emission abatement measures and their associated costs, air quality and health impacts and benefits by means of air quality modelling tools, health impact functions and cost-efficiency analysis. The MAPLIA system was applied to the Grande Porto urban area (Portugal), addressing PM10 and NOx as the most important pollutants in the region. Four different measures to reduce PM10 and NOx emissions were defined and characterized in terms of emissions and implementation costs, and combined into 15 emission scenarios, simulated by the TAPM air quality modelling tool. Air pollutant concentration fields were then used to estimate health benefits in terms of avoided costs (external costs), using dose-response health impact functions. Results revealed that, among the 15 scenarios analysed, the scenario including all 4 measures lead to a total net benefit of 0.3M€·y(-1). The largest net benefit is obtained for the scenario considering the conversion of 50% of open fire places into heat recovery wood stoves. Although the implementation costs of this measure are high, the benefits outweigh the costs. Research outcomes confirm that the MAPLIA system is useful for policy decision support on air quality improvement strategies, and could be applied to other urban areas where AQP need to be implemented and monitored. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  4. Improving the accuracy of admitted subacute clinical costing: an action research approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hakkennes, Sharon; Arblaster, Ross; Lim, Kim

    2016-08-29

    Objective The aim of the present study was to determine whether action research could be used to improve the breadth and accuracy of clinical costing data in an admitted subacute settingMethods The setting was a 100-bed in-patient rehabilitation centre. Using a pre-post study design all admitted subacute separations during the 2011-12 financial year were eligible for inclusion. An action research framework aimed at improving clinical costing methodology was developed and implemented.Results In all, 1499 separations were included in the study. A medical record audit of a random selection of 80 separations demonstrated that the use of an action research framework was effective in improving the breadth and accuracy of the costing data. This was evidenced by a significant increase in the average number of activities costed, a reduction in the average number of activities incorrectly costed and a reduction in the average number of activities missing from the costing, per episode of care.Conclusions Engaging clinicians and cost centre managers was effective in facilitating the development of robust clinical costing data in an admitted subacute setting. Further investigation into the value of this approach across other care types and healthcare services is warranted.What is known about this topic? Accurate clinical costing data is essential for informing price models used in activity-based funding. In Australia, there is currently a lack of robust admitted subacute cost data to inform the price model for this care type.What does this paper add? The action research framework presented in this study was effective in improving the breadth and accuracy of clinical costing data in an admitted subacute setting.What are the implications for practitioners? To improve clinical costing practices, health services should consider engaging key stakeholders, including clinicians and cost centre managers, in reviewing clinical costing methodology. Robust clinical costing data has the

  5. Improved Approach for Utilization of FPGA Technology into DAQ, DSP, and Computing Applications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Isenhower, Larry Donald

    2009-01-28

    Innovation Partners proposed and successfully demonstrated in this SBIR Phase I grant a software/hardware co-design approach to reduce both the difficulty and time to implement Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) solutions to data acquisition and specialized computational applications. FPGAs can require excessive time for programming and require specialized knowledge that will be greatly reduced by the company's solution. Not only are FPGAs ideal for DAQ and embedded solutions, they can also be the best solution to specialized signal processing to replace Digital Signal Processors (DSPs). By allowing FPGA programming to be done in C with the equivalent of a simple compilation, algorithm changes and improvements can be implemented decreasing the life-cycle costs and allow subsitution of new FPGA designs staying above the technological details.

  6. Adding voucher-based incentives to community reinforcement approach improves outcomes during treatment for cocaine dependence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Fernández, Gloria; Secades-Villa, Roberto; García-Rodríguez, Olaya; Sánchez-Hervás, Emilio; Fernández-Hermida, José R; Higgins, Stephen T

    2011-01-01

    This study compares the efficacy of the Community Reinforcement Approach (CRA) with and without an incentive program for cocaine-dependent patients in Spain. A total of 58 patients were randomly assigned to the CRA or CRA plus vouchers condition. In the CRA plus vouchers group, mean percentage of cocaine-negative samples was 97.07%, versus 79.76% in the no-voucher group. Those treated in the CRA plus vouchers condition also achieved greater improvements in psychosocial functioning than those treated in the CRA condition. The present results show that treatment outcome is better if incentives are delivered contingent upon the submission of cocaine-free urine specimens. 

  7. Performance Improvement of BER in MIMO Systems with SVD-Based Precoding Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akash Sethi

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Interference is the factor which limits the performance in cellular network. Empowered by precoding and decoding, a spatially multiplexed Multiple-Input Multiple-Output (MIMO system becomes a convenient framework to offer high data rate, diversity and interference management. In this paper, we discuss precoding scheme to mitigate the effect of channel fading in MIMO system where there is no limit in number of antennas at transmitter and receiver. With the knowledge of channel state information (CSI the transmitted signal is defined such that the channel fading effect is greatly mitigated. This will improve the BER performance of the MIMO system. For our proposed scheme, we use the Singular Value Decomposition (SVD based approach to design the transmitted signal such that it mitigate the effect of channel fading. After simulation, we observe that the BER performance of MIMO system is better than when equalization technique used alone.

  8. A Hybrid Approach for Improving Image Segmentation: Application to Phenotyping of Wheat Leaves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chopin, Joshua; Laga, Hamid; Miklavcic, Stanley J

    2016-01-01

    In this article we propose a novel tool that takes an initial segmented image and returns a more accurate segmentation that accurately captures sharp features such as leaf tips, twists and axils. Our algorithm utilizes basic a-priori information about the shape of plant leaves and local image orientations to fit active contour models to important plant features that have been missed during the initial segmentation. We compare the performance of our approach with three state-of-the-art segmentation techniques, using three error metrics. The results show that leaf tips are detected with roughly one half of the original error, segmentation accuracy is almost always improved and more than half of the leaf breakages are corrected.

  9. Improving fetal to neonatal transition of the very preterm infant: novel approaches

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Maximo Vento

    2010-01-01

    @@ Two main issues are crucial for neonatology at present:first, the increased rate of preterm delivery (> 10%)especially in low and middle income countries or even in industrialized countries lacking a universal access to health care;1 second, an increased survival of preterm infants (<37 weeks gestation), and especially of those in the lower gestational ages (24 to 32 weeks gestation) that has been associated with an increased rate of morbidity2Therefore, inescapable objectives of perinatology and neonatology should be to reduce preterm delivery and to improve the quality of survival of very preterm infants.Laudable initiatives in this regard include optimizing prenatal and perinatal obstetric care and generalizing the delivery room intensive care unit (DRICU) concept consisting in applying the most advance available technology and gentle approach during resuscitation.3 The aim of this article has been to analyze published results derived from applying these interventions and put them into perspective.

  10. Improving perioperative care for adolescent idiopathic scoliosis patients: the impact of a multidisciplinary care approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borden, Timothy C; Bellaire, Laura L; Fletcher, Nicholas D

    2016-01-01

    The complex nature of the surgical treatment of adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS) requires a wide variety of health care providers. A well-coordinated, multidisciplinary team approach to the care of these patients is essential for providing high-quality care. This review offers an up-to-date overview of the numerous interventions and safety measures for improving outcomes after AIS surgery throughout the perioperative phases of care. Reducing the risk of potentially devastating and costly complications after AIS surgery is the responsibility of every single member of the health care team. Specifically, this review will focus on the perioperative measures for preventing surgical site infections, reducing the risk of neurologic injury, minimizing surgical blood loss, and preventing postoperative complications. Also, the review will highlight the postoperative protocols that emphasize early mobilization and accelerated discharge. PMID:27695340

  11. Branch-pipe-routing approach for ships using improved genetic algorithm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sui, Haiteng; Niu, Wentie

    2016-09-01

    Branch-pipe routing plays fundamental and critical roles in ship-pipe design. The branch-pipe-routing problem is a complex combinatorial optimization problem and is thus difficult to solve when depending only on human experts. A modified genetic-algorithm-based approach is proposed in this paper to solve this problem. The simplified layout space is first divided into threedimensional (3D) grids to build its mathematical model. Branch pipes in layout space are regarded as a combination of several two-point pipes, and the pipe route between two connection points is generated using an improved maze algorithm. The coding of branch pipes is then defined, and the genetic operators are devised, especially the complete crossover strategy that greatly accelerates the convergence speed. Finally, simulation tests demonstrate the performance of proposed method.

  12. Improved cluster-in-molecule local correlation approach for electron correlation calculation of large systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Yang; Li, Wei; Li, Shuhua

    2014-10-02

    An improved cluster-in-molecule (CIM) local correlation approach is developed to allow electron correlation calculations of large systems more accurate and faster. We have proposed a refined strategy of constructing virtual LMOs of various clusters, which is suitable for basis sets of various types. To recover medium-range electron correlation, which is important for quantitative descriptions of large systems, we find that a larger distance threshold (ξ) is necessary for highly accurate results. Our illustrative calculations show that the present CIM-MP2 (second-order Møller-Plesser perturbation theory, MP2) or CIM-CCSD (coupled cluster singles and doubles, CCSD) scheme with a suitable ξ value is capable of recovering more than 99.8% correlation energies for a wide range of systems at different basis sets. Furthermore, the present CIM-MP2 scheme can provide reliable relative energy differences as the conventional MP2 method for secondary structures of polypeptides.

  13. An Integrated Approach to Thermal Management of International Space Station Logistics Flights, Improving the Efficiency

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holladay, Jon; Day, Greg; Roberts, Barry; Leahy, Frank

    2003-01-01

    The efficiency of re-useable aerospace systems requires a focus on the total operations process rather than just orbital performance. For the Multi-Purpose Logistics Module this activity included special attention to terrestrial conditions both pre-launch and post-landing and how they inter-relate to the mission profile. Several of the efficiencies implemented for the MPLM Mission Engineering were NASA firsts and all served to improve the overall operations activities. This paper will provide an explanation of how various issues were addressed and the resulting solutions. Topics range from statistical analysis of over 30 years of atmospheric data at the launch and landing site to a new approach for operations with the Shuttle Carrier Aircraft. In each situation the goal was to "tune" the thermal management of the overall flight system for minimizing requirement risk while optimizing power and energy performance.

  14. Boundary Variation Diminishing (BVD) reconstruction: a new approach to improve Godunov scheme

    CERN Document Server

    Sun, Ziyao; Xiao, Feng

    2016-01-01

    This note presents a new approach, so-called boundary variation diminishing (BVD), for reconstruction that minimizes the discontinuities (jumps) at cell interfaces in the Godunov type schemes. It is motivated by the observation that diminishing the jump at the cell boundary might effectively reduce the dissipation in numerical flux. Different from the existing practices which seek high-order polynomials within mesh cells while assuming discontinuities being always at the cell interfaces, we proposed a new strategy that combines a high-order polynomial-based interpolation and a jump-like reconstruction that allows a jump being partly represented within the mesh cell rather than at the interface. It is shown that new schemes of high fidelity for both continuous and discontinuous solutions can be devised by the BVD guideline with properly-chosen candidate reconstruction schemes. Excellent numerical results have been obtained for both scalar and Euler conservation laws with substantial improvement in solution qua...

  15. The pivotal plan: a 3-step approach to decrease staffing costs and improve quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Cherri D; Spengler, Ketrina L

    2011-01-01

    This article reviews how the nurse leaders of a 136-bed medical/surgical service developed and implemented a methodical plan to fill RN vacancies, decrease labor costs, and improve quality. This simple, straight-forward approach was designed to rapidly fill core staff positions while minimizing the impact of the vacancies and ultimately eliminate the use of temporary nursing staff. The detailed components of the plan provided a way to assess vacancy data, time temporary replacements, and structure beneficial hospital partnerships, all of which were instrumental in the success of the plan. The plan was implemented throughout the facility because of proven success in the medical/surgical service. The leaders' focus on decreasing labor costs resulted in hiring a stable core staff that was able to attain established quality initiatives. The financial and quality outcomes of the service demonstrate the ability to sustain excellent results over time.

  16. A Bayesian approach to compatibility, improvement, and pooling of quantum states

    CERN Document Server

    Leifer, M S

    2011-01-01

    In approaches to quantum theory in which the quantum state is regarded as a representation of knowledge, information, or belief, two agents can assign different states to the same quantum system. This raises two questions: when are such state assignments compatible? and how should the state assignments of different agents be reconciled? In this paper, we address these questions from the perspective of the recently developed conditional states formalism for quantum theory [arXiv:1107.5849]. Specifically, we derive a compatibility criterion proposed by Brun, Finkelstein and Mermin from the requirement that, upon acquiring data, agents should update their states using a quantum generalization of Bayesian conditioning. We provide two alternative arguments for this criterion, based on the objective and subjective Bayesian interpretations of probability theory. We then apply the same methodology to the problem of quantum state improvement, i.e. how to update your state when you learn someone else's state assignment...

  17. An Approach to Improve the State Scalability of Source Specific Multicast

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. A. Al-Talib

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement: Source Specific Multicast (SSM is an acceptable solution for current multicast applications; since the driving applications to date are one to many, including Internet TV, distance learning, file distribution and streaming media. Approach: It was useful for billing, address allocation and security. SSM still had serious state scalability problem when there were a large number of simultaneous on-going multicast groups in the network. Results: In this study, a scheme had been devised to improve the state scalability of source specific multicast. The scheme consisted of two stages: Conclusion/Recommendations: The first stage was to cluster the receivers based on their IP addresses and the second stage was to reduce the multicast state at routers. In order to prove the correctness of the proposed scheme, it had been applied to multicast trees built by other researchers. The results of the comparison approved our statement.

  18. Has Stewart approach improved our ability to diagnose acid-base disorders in critically ill patients?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masevicius, Fabio D; Dubin, Arnaldo

    2015-02-04

    conventional methods. Although the introduction of the Stewart approach was a new insight into acid-base physiology, the method has not significantly improved our ability to understand, diagnose, and treat acid-base alterations in critically ill patients.

  19. Improved PEP-FOLD Approach for Peptide and Miniprotein Structure Prediction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Yimin; Maupetit, Julien; Derreumaux, Philippe; Tufféry, Pierre

    2014-10-14

    Peptides and mini proteins have many biological and biomedical implications, which motivates the development of accurate methods, suitable for large-scale experiments, to predict their experimental or native conformations solely from sequences. In this study, we report PEP-FOLD2, an improved coarse grained approach for peptide de novo structure prediction and compare it with PEP-FOLD1 and the state-of-the-art Rosetta program. Using a benchmark of 56 structurally diverse peptides with 25-52 amino acids and a total of 600 simulations for each system, PEP-FOLD2 generates higher quality models than PEP-FOLD1, and PEP-FOLD2 and Rosetta generate near-native or native models for 95% and 88% of the targets, respectively. In the situation where we do not have any experimental structures at hand, PEP-FOLD2 and Rosetta return a near-native or native conformation among the top five best scored models for 80% and 75% of the targets, respectively. While the PEP-FOLD2 prediction rate is better than the ROSETTA prediction rate by 5%, this improvement is non-negligible because PEP-FOLD2 explores a larger conformational space than ROSETTA and consists of a single coarse-grained phase. Our results indicate that if the coarse-grained PEP-FOLD2 method is approaching maturity, we are not at the end of the game of mini-protein structure prediction, but this opens new perspectives for large-scale in silico experiments.

  20. Improvement of the First Training for Baccalaureate Nursing Students –A Mutual Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asadizaker, Marziyeh; Abedsaeedi, Zhila; Abedi, Heidarali; Alijanirenani, Hooshang; Moradi, Mehrnaz; Jahani, Simin

    2015-01-01

    Background: Examination of problems and application of strategies appropriate for clinical education and learning, especially nursing clinical principles and skills internship can improve educational process and satisfaction of nursing students. The aim of the current study was to revise the current status of the fundamentals of nursing course and implement an improvement plan (2012-2014). Participants & Methods: The present study reports the three rounds of a participatory action-research study with a mutual cooperation approach and focus group discussion, with participation of 104 stakeholders. Content analysis approach was used to analyze the data obtained in focus discussion interviews. In addition, evaluation and reflection were done during the operating rounds, with the participation of all members, including students, were involved. This research program was approved by Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences in Tehran-capital of Iran, at the Research Deputy of Nursing and Midwifery School and ethics committee of the university. Results: The findings of qualitative study detected Lack of consistency in planning and implementation of curriculum, inadequate intra/extra-organizational communication management, inadequate student understanding of situation, improper control of restrictors and improper use of facilitators in teaching and in clinical setting, were among major challenges in clinical skills and principles internship process in the context of this study. Educational decision-making authorities of the School developed an operational program within national curriculum framework through cooperation and reflection in clinical skills and principles training program. Conclusion: Planning Fundamentals of Nursing training in partnership with all those involved in practice and education, together with students involved can be effective in reducing educational failures, gap between theory and practice, and in students’ accountability and satisfaction

  1. Implementation of Health Action Process Approach to Improve Dietary Adherence in Type 2 Diabetic Patient

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kusnanto Kusnanto

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Type 2 diabetic patients usually unsuccessful to follow the diet recommendation due to lack of motivation, memory and intention. This study attempts to increase the motivation and also to improve intention in dietary adherence through the implementation of Health Action Process Approach (HAPA. Method: This study was a quasy-experiment. The population were type 2 diabetic patients in Puskesmas Krian Sidoarjo in March-April 2015. Respondents were only 16 and had been divided into experiment and control group. The independent variable was the implementation of HAPA. The dependent variable were self-efficacy, dietary adherence and blood sugar levels. The instruments in this study were questionnaires and blood sugar monitoring devices. Data were analyzed using statistical wilcoxon sign rank test and mann whitney u  test with significance level α ≤ 0.05. Result: Wilcoxon sign rank test showed there were differences between pre and post test significantly on self-efficacy (p=0.014, dietary adherence  (p=0.025, blood sugar levels (p=0.009 in  experiment group, while no significant differences in control group. Mann Witney U test showed that there was significant difference on dietary adherence (p=0.002 between two groups. Discussion: In conclusion, the implementation of HAPA can improve dietary adherence in type 2 diabetic patient. Further, following studies are expected with large number respondents and identify the whole variables in the HAPA theory. Keywords: Health Action Process Approach (HAPA, self efficacy, dietary adherence, blood glucose, Diabetes Mellitus (DM

  2. A Time Efficient Adaptive Gridding Approach and Improved Calibrations in Five-Hole Probe Measurements

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason Town

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Five-Hole Probes (FHP, being a dependable and accurate aerodynamic tool, are an excellent choice for measuring three-dimensional flow fields in turbomachinery. To improve spatial resolution, a subminiature FHP with a diameter of 1.68 mm is employed. High length to diameter ratio of the tubing and manual pitch and yaw calibration cause increased uncertainty. A new FHP calibrator is designed and built to reduce the uncertainty by precise, computer controlled movements and reduced calibration time. The calibrated FHP is then placed downstream of the nozzle guide vane (NGV assembly of a low-speed, large-scale, axial flow turbine. The cold flow HP turbine stage contains 29 vanes and 36 blades. A fast and computer controllable traversing system is implemented using an adaptive grid method for the refinement of measurements in regions such as vane wake, secondary flows, and boundary layers. The current approach increases the possible number of measurement points in a two-hour period by 160%. Flow structures behind the NGV measurement plane are identified with high spatial resolution and reduced uncertainty. The automated pitch and yaw calibration and the adaptive grid approach introduced in this study are shown to be a highly effective way of measuring complex flow fields in the research turbine.

  3. Improving the dictionary lookup approach for disease normalization using enhanced dictionary and query expansion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jonnagaddala, Jitendra; Jue, Toni Rose; Chang, Nai-Wen; Dai, Hong-Jie

    2016-01-01

    The rapidly increasing biomedical literature calls for the need of an automatic approach in the recognition and normalization of disease mentions in order to increase the precision and effectivity of disease based information retrieval. A variety of methods have been proposed to deal with the problem of disease named entity recognition and normalization. Among all the proposed methods, conditional random fields (CRFs) and dictionary lookup method are widely used for named entity recognition and normalization respectively. We herein developed a CRF-based model to allow automated recognition of disease mentions, and studied the effect of various techniques in improving the normalization results based on the dictionary lookup approach. The dataset from the BioCreative V CDR track was used to report the performance of the developed normalization methods and compare with other existing dictionary lookup based normalization methods. The best configuration achieved an F-measure of 0.77 for the disease normalization, which outperformed the best dictionary lookup based baseline method studied in this work by an F-measure of 0.13.Database URL: https://github.com/TCRNBioinformatics/DiseaseExtract.

  4. An improved ant colony optimization approach for optimization of process planning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, JinFeng; Fan, XiaoLiang; Ding, Haimin

    2014-01-01

    Computer-aided process planning (CAPP) is an important interface between computer-aided design (CAD) and computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) in computer-integrated manufacturing environments (CIMs). In this paper, process planning problem is described based on a weighted graph, and an ant colony optimization (ACO) approach is improved to deal with it effectively. The weighted graph consists of nodes, directed arcs, and undirected arcs, which denote operations, precedence constraints among operation, and the possible visited path among operations, respectively. Ant colony goes through the necessary nodes on the graph to achieve the optimal solution with the objective of minimizing total production costs (TPCs). A pheromone updating strategy proposed in this paper is incorporated in the standard ACO, which includes Global Update Rule and Local Update Rule. A simple method by controlling the repeated number of the same process plans is designed to avoid the local convergence. A case has been carried out to study the influence of various parameters of ACO on the system performance. Extensive comparative experiments have been carried out to validate the feasibility and efficiency of the proposed approach.

  5. Hotspots identification and ranking for road safety improvement: an alternative approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coll, Bronagh; Moutari, Salissou; Marshall, Adele H

    2013-10-01

    During the last decade, the concept of composite performance index, brought from economic and business statistics, has become a popular practice in the field of road safety, namely for the identification and classification of worst performing areas or time slots also known as hotspots. The overall quality of a composite index depends upon the complexity of phenomena of interest as well as the relevance of the methodological approach used to aggregate the various indicators into a single composite index. However, current aggregation methods used to estimate the composite road safety performance index suffer from various deficiencies at both the theoretical and operational level; these include the correlation and compensability between indicators, the weighting of the indicators as well as their high "degree of freedom" which enables one to readily manipulate them to produce desired outcomes (Munda and Nardo, 2003, 2005, 2009). The objective of this study is to contribute to the ongoing research effort on the estimation of road safety composite index for hotspots' identification and ranking. The aggregation method for constructing the composite road safety performance index introduced in this paper, strives to minimize the aforementioned deficiencies of the current approaches. Furthermore, this new method can be viewed as an intelligent decision support system for road safety performance evaluation, in order to prioritize interventions for road safety improvement.

  6. Co-crystallization: An approach to improve the performance characteristics of active pharmaceutical ingredients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jignasa Ketan Savjani

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Co-crystal chemistry has recently attracted supramolecular scientists. Co-crystals are comprising of hydrogen boding assembly between different molecules. Many issues related to performance characteristics of an active pharmaceutical ingredient (API can be resolved using co-crystallization approach. Proper understanding of crystal structure of an API is required for successful formation of co-crystals with the selected co-former. This review article focus on explanation about co-crystals, intellectual property rights, their advantages and limitations. Co-crystallization can be achieved using different methods like co-grinding slurry based, solvent evaporation method, etc. Methods of co-crystallization are simple and increase the purity of the final product. Co-crystallization can be applied to the drugs prescribed in combination therapy. Stoichiometric composition of different drugs used in combination therapy can be co-crystallize to form one solid state form. Physicochemical properties of APIs such as solubility and stability can be improved using co-crystallization approach. With due regards co-crystallization should be used with caution because of some issues during manufacturing of final product.

  7. Improving outcomes in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: the role of the interprofessional approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amalakuhan B

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Bravein Amalakuhan,1,2 Sandra G Adams1,2 1Department of Medicine, Division of Pulmonary Diseases/Critical Care Medicine, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 2South Texas Veterans Health Care System, Audie L. Murphy Division, San Antonio, TX, USA Abstract: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD is associated with significant morbidity, places substantial time and cost burden on the health care system, and is now the third leading cause of death in the US. Many interventions are available to appropriately manage patients with COPD; however, fully implementing these strategies to help improve outcomes may be difficult. Collaboration between an interprofessional team of health care professionals (which includes physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists, physical therapists, dietitians, pharmacists, and many others and COPD patients and caregivers is necessary to optimally manage these patients and to truly impact outcomes in this devastating disease. Prescribing evidence-based non-pharmacological and pharmacological therapies is an important start, but a true team-based approach is critical to successfully implement comprehensive care in patients with COPD. The goal of this review is to employ a case-based approach to provide practical information regarding the roles of the interprofessional team in implementing strategies to optimally manage COPD patients. Keywords: optimal care, shared decision-making, co-morbidities

  8. Steady-State Creep of Rock Salt: Improved Approaches for Lab Determination and Modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Günther, R.-M.; Salzer, K.; Popp, T.; Lüdeling, C.

    2015-11-01

    Actual problems in geotechnical design, e.g., of underground openings for radioactive waste repositories or high-pressure gas storages, require sophisticated constitutive models and consistent parameters for rock salt that facilitate reliable prognosis of stress-dependent deformation and associated damage. Predictions have to comprise the active mining phase with open excavations as well as the long-term development of the backfilled mine or repository. While convergence-induced damage occurs mostly in the vicinity of openings, the long-term behaviour of the backfilled system is dominated by the damage-free steady-state creep. However, because in experiments the time necessary to reach truly stationary creep rates can range from few days to years, depending mainly on temperature and stress, an innovative but simple creep testing approach is suggested to obtain more reliable results: A series of multi-step tests with loading and unloading cycles allows a more reliable estimate of stationary creep rate in a reasonable time. For modelling, we use the advanced strain-hardening approach of Günther-Salzer, which comprehensively describes all relevant deformation properties of rock salt such as creep and damage-induced rock failure within the scope of an unified creep ansatz. The capability of the combination of improved creep testing procedures and accompanied modelling is demonstrated by recalculating multi-step creep tests at different loading and temperature conditions. Thus reliable extrapolations relevant to in-situ creep rates (10^{-9} to 10^{-13} s^{-1}) become possible.

  9. A Multidisciplinary Approach with Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Improve Outcome in Snake Bite Injuries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korambayil, Pradeoth Mukundan; Ambookan, Prashanth Varkey; Abraham, Siju Varghese; Ambalakat, Ajay

    2015-01-01

    Snakebite injuries are common in tropical India among those who are involved in outdoor activities. These injuries results in cellulitis, gangrene at the bite area, bleeding manifestations, compartment syndrome, regional lymphadenopathy, septicemia, hypotension, and disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC) resulting in significant morbidity and mortality. The purpose of this study is to share our experience of multidisciplinary approach in the management of snakebite injuries of the extremities with various treatment modalities including hyperbaric oxygen (HBO) therapy, surgical debridement, and soft tissue reconstruction to provide an effective treatment for snake bite injuries. The study was conducted in the Department of Plastic Surgery, during the period October 2012-December 2014, wherein all the patients who were admitted with snakebite injuries were enrolled and the patients treated in plastic surgery department were included into the study. Out of total 766 patients, there were 323 patients treated with anti snake venom (ASV) and 29 died among the treated patients; 205 patients belonged to pediatric age group. Out of 112 patients referred to Department of Plastic Surgery, 50 cases presented with cellulitis, 24 patients with compartment syndrome, and 38 patients were referred for the management of soft tissue cover over the extremities. Among 112 patients, 77 involved the lower extremity and 35 the upper extremity. Multidisciplinary approach including hyperbaric oxygen (HBO) therapy improves outcome in the management of snakebite injuries of the extremities.

  10. Improving the dictionary lookup approach for disease normalization using enhanced dictionary and query expansion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jonnagaddala, Jitendra; Jue, Toni Rose; Chang, Nai-Wen; Dai, Hong-Jie

    2016-01-01

    The rapidly increasing biomedical literature calls for the need of an automatic approach in the recognition and normalization of disease mentions in order to increase the precision and effectivity of disease based information retrieval. A variety of methods have been proposed to deal with the problem of disease named entity recognition and normalization. Among all the proposed methods, conditional random fields (CRFs) and dictionary lookup method are widely used for named entity recognition and normalization respectively. We herein developed a CRF-based model to allow automated recognition of disease mentions, and studied the effect of various techniques in improving the normalization results based on the dictionary lookup approach. The dataset from the BioCreative V CDR track was used to report the performance of the developed normalization methods and compare with other existing dictionary lookup based normalization methods. The best configuration achieved an F-measure of 0.77 for the disease normalization, which outperformed the best dictionary lookup based baseline method studied in this work by an F-measure of 0.13. Database URL: https://github.com/TCRNBioinformatics/DiseaseExtract PMID:27504009

  11. A participative management approach for improving direct-care staff performance in an institutional setting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burgio, L D; Whitman, T L; Reid, D H

    1983-01-01

    The present study evaluated a participative management approach for increasing the frequency of interactions between institutional staff and severely/profoundly retarded residents. The participative management approach involved teaching staff how to use self-monitoring, standard setting, self-evaluation, and self-reinforcement procedures. These procedures were then used by staff with minimal involvement of supervisory personnel. Although supervisors provided feedback and praise to staff for using these self-management behaviors, feedback and praise were never dispensed contingent on staff interactions with residents. Results indicated that during the participative management program there was an increase in staff interactions that were contingent on appropriate resident behavior. The increase in this type of staff interaction was accompanied by an increase in appropriate resident behavior. Follow-up data on both staff and resident behaviors, although showing moderating trends, suggested generally good maintenance of the initial behavior changes. Acceptability data suggested that staff were quite receptive to the program. The advantages of participative management procedures for improving staff performance in residential settings are discussed. PMID:6833168

  12. Do Energy Efficiency Standards Improve Quality? Evidence from a Revealed Preference Approach

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Houde, Sebastien [Univ. of Maryland, College Park, MD (United States); Spurlock, C. Anna [Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)

    2015-06-01

    Minimum energy efficiency standards have occupied a central role in U.S. energy policy for more than three decades, but little is known about their welfare effects. In this paper, we employ a revealed preference approach to quantify the impact of past revisions in energy efficiency standards on product quality. The micro-foundation of our approach is a discrete choice model that allows us to compute a price-adjusted index of vertical quality. Focusing on the appliance market, we show that several standard revisions during the period 2001-2011 have led to an increase in quality. We also show that these standards have had a modest effect on prices, and in some cases they even led to decreases in prices. For revision events where overall quality increases and prices decrease, the consumer welfare effect of tightening the standards is unambiguously positive. Finally, we show that after controlling for the effect of improvement in energy efficiency, standards have induced an expansion of quality in the non-energy dimension. We discuss how imperfect competition can rationalize these results.

  13. New approaches to the electromagnetic monitoring for improving the regulatory framework “green” building

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grafkina Marina

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In the regulatory legal base of a “green” construction existing now in the Russian Federation for assessment of an ecological safety of rooms of residential and public buildings criteria of electromagnetic comfort aren’t used. Its completion with obligatory assessment of indicators of electromagnetic safety is reasonable. Suggestions for improvement of the existing documents regulating assessment of conformity of real estate objects to ecological requirements are given in article. For the purpose of further development of system of regulation of negative factors of the habitat and electromagnetic safety, authors offer new approach to environmental control of low-frequency electromagnetic fields – transition from measurement of amplitude characteristics to determination of energy parameters. Sanitary and hygienic assessment and regulation of low-frequency electromagnetic fields it is performed separately on intensity of electric and magnetic field that doesn’t give an idea of an overall picture of spatial distribution of energy. The energy approach offered by authors will allow to estimate total energy impact of electromagnetic fields per capita, and also to develop new system of regulation of low-frequency electromagnetic fields in energy parameters.

  14. An improved theoretical approach to the empirical corrections of density functional theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lii, Jenn-Huei; Hu, Ching-Han

    2012-02-01

    An empirical correction to density functional theory (DFT) has been developed in this study. The approach, called correlation corrected atomization-dispersion (CCAZD), involves short- and long-range terms. Short-range correction consists of bond ( 1,2-) and angle ( 1,3-) interactions, which remedies the deficiency of DFT in describing the proto-branching stabilization effects. Long-range correction includes a Buckingham potential function aiming to account for the dispersion interactions. The empirical corrections of DFT were parameterized to reproduce reported Δ H f values of the training set containing alkane, alcohol and ether molecules. The Δ H f of the training set molecules predicted by the CCAZD method combined with two different DFT methods, B3LYP and MPWB1K, with a 6-31G* basis set agreed well with the experimental data. For 106 alkane, alcohol and ether compounds, the average absolute deviations (AADs) in Δ H f were 0.45 and 0.51 kcal/mol for B3LYP- and MPWB1K-CCAZD, respectively. Calculations of isomerization energies, rotational barriers and conformational energies further validated the CCAZD approach. The isomerization energies improved significantly with the CCAZD treatment. The AADs for 22 energies of isomerization reactions were decreased from 3.55 and 2.44 to 0.55 and 0.82 kcal/mol for B3LYP and MPWB1K, respectively. This study also provided predictions of MM4, G3, CBS-QB3 and B2PLYP-D for comparison. The final test of the CCAZD approach on the calculation of the cellobiose analog potential surface also showed promising results. This study demonstrated that DFT calculations with CCAZD empirical corrections achieved very good agreement with reported values for various chemical reactions with a small basis set as 6-31G*.

  15. IMPROVING THE POSITIONING ACCURACY OF TRAIN ON THE APPROACH SECTION TO THE RAILWAY CROSSING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. I. Havryliuk

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. In the paper it is necessary to analyze possibility of improving the positioning accuracy of train on the approach section to crossing for traffic safety control at railway crossings. Methodology. Researches were performed using developed mathematical model, describing dependence of the input impedance of the coded and audio frequency track circuits on a train coordinate at various values of ballast isolation resistances and for all usable frequencies. Findings. The paper presents the developed mathematical model, describing dependence of the input impedance of the coded and audio-frequency track circuits on the train coordinate at various values of ballast isolation resistances and for all frequencies used in track circuits. The relative error determination of train coordinate by input impedance caused by variation of the ballast isolation resistance for the coded track circuits was investigated. The values of relative error determination of train coordinate can achieve up to 40-50 % and these facts do not allow using this method directly for coded track circuits. For short audio frequency track circuits on frequencies of continuous cab signaling (25, 50 Hz the relative error does not exceed acceptable values, this allow using the examined method for determination of train location on the approach section to railway crossing. Originality. The developed mathematical model allowed determination of the error dependence of train coordinate by using input impedance of the track circuit for coded and audio-frequency track circuits at various frequencies of the signal current and at different ballast isolation resistances. Practical value. The authors proposethe method for train location determination on approach section to the crossing, equipped with audio-frequency track circuits, which is a combination of discrete and continuous monitoring of the train location.

  16. Proposition of novel classification approach and features for improved real-time arrhythmia monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Yoon Jae; Heo, Jeong; Park, Kwang Suk; Kim, Sungwan

    2016-08-01

    Arrhythmia refers to a group of conditions in which the heartbeat is irregular, fast, or slow due to abnormal electrical activity in the heart. Some types of arrhythmia such as ventricular fibrillation may result in cardiac arrest or death. Thus, arrhythmia detection becomes an important issue, and various studies have been conducted. Additionally, an arrhythmia detection algorithm for portable devices such as mobile phones has recently been developed because of increasing interest in e-health care. This paper proposes a novel classification approach and features, which are validated for improved real-time arrhythmia monitoring. The classification approach that was employed for arrhythmia detection is based on the concept of ensemble learning and the Taguchi method and has the advantage of being accurate and computationally efficient. The electrocardiography (ECG) data for arrhythmia detection was obtained from the MIT-BIH Arrhythmia Database (n=48). A novel feature, namely the heart rate variability calculated from 5s segments of ECG, which was not considered previously, was used. The novel classification approach and feature demonstrated arrhythmia detection accuracy of 89.13%. When the same data was classified using the conventional support vector machine (SVM), the obtained accuracy was 91.69%, 88.14%, and 88.74% for Gaussian, linear, and polynomial kernels, respectively. In terms of computation time, the proposed classifier was 5821.7 times faster than conventional SVM. In conclusion, the proposed classifier and feature showed performance comparable to those of previous studies, while the computational complexity and update interval were highly reduced.

  17. An improved quantitative approach for the assessment of mitochondrial fragmentation in chemoresistant ovarian cancer cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lee Farrand

    Full Text Available Mitochondrial fission is a process that involves cleavage of mitochondria into smaller fragments and is regulated by the GTPase Dynamin-related protein 1 (Drp1. Higher levels of mitochondrial fission are associated with the induction of apoptosis in cancer cells. However, current methods to accurately quantify mitochondrial fission in order to compare therapeutics that target this process are often ambiguous or rely on subjective assessment. Mitochondria are also prone to aggregation, making accurate analysis difficult. Here we describe an improved approach for the quantification of mitochondrial fragmentation involving several differences from currently existing methods. Cells are first subjected to cytological centrifugation, which reduces cellular z-axis height and disperses individual mitochondria for easier observation. Three commercially available fluorescence analysis tools are then applied to disambiguate remaining mitochondrial clusters that require further inspection. Finally, cut-off scoring is applied, which can be tailored to individual cell type. The resultant approach allows for the efficient and objective assessment of mitochondrial fragmentation in response to treatment. We applied this technique to an experimental question involving chemosensitive and chemoresistant ovarian cancer (OVCA cells. Cisplatin and the phytochemical piperlongumine were found to induce both mitochondrial fission and apoptosis in chemosensitive cells, while only piperlongumine was able to elicit these cellular responses in chemoresistant cells. Piperlongumine-induced apoptosis appeared to be mediated by Drp1-dependent mitochondrial fission since the apoptotic response was attenuated by the presence of the Drp1 inhibitor mDivi-1. Our study provides groundwork for a more objective approach to the quantification of mitochondrial fragmentation, and sheds further light on a potential mechanism of action for piperlongumine in the treatment of chemoresistant

  18. Toward the Improvement of Trail Classification in National Parks Using the Recreation Opportunity Spectrum Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oishi, Yoshitaka

    2013-06-01

    Trail settings in national parks are essential management tools for improving both ecological conservation efforts and the quality of visitor experiences. This study proposes a plan for the appropriate maintenance of trails in Chubusangaku National Park, Japan, based on the recreation opportunity spectrum (ROS) approach. First, we distributed 452 questionnaires to determine park visitors' preferences for setting a trail (response rate = 68 %). Respondents' preferences were then evaluated according to the following seven parameters: access, remoteness, naturalness, facilities and site management, social encounters, visitor impact, and visitor management. Using nonmetric multidimensional scaling and cluster analysis, the visitors were classified into seven groups. Last, we classified the actual trails according to the visitor questionnaire criteria to examine the discrepancy between visitors' preferences and actual trail settings. The actual trail classification indicated that while most developed trails were located in accessible places, primitive trails were located in remote areas. However, interestingly, two visitor groups seemed to prefer a well-conserved natural environment and, simultaneously, easily accessible trails. This finding does not correspond to a premise of the ROS approach, which supposes that primitive trails should be located in remote areas without ready access. Based on this study's results, we propose that creating trails, which afford visitors the opportunity to experience a well-conserved natural environment in accessible areas is a useful means to provide visitors with diverse recreation opportunities. The process of data collection and analysis in this study can be one approach to produce ROS maps for providing visitors with recreational opportunities of greater diversity and higher quality.

  19. Improving Learning Achievements, Motivations and Problem-Solving Skills through a Peer Assessment-Based Game Development Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, Gwo-Jen; Hung, Chun-Ming; Chen, Nian-Shing

    2014-01-01

    In this study, a peer assessment-based game development approach is proposed for improving students' learning achievements, motivations and problem-solving skills. An experiment has been conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed approach in a science course at an elementary school. A total of 167 sixth graders participated in…

  20. Improving Learning Achievements, Motivations and Problem-Solving Skills through a Peer Assessment-Based Game Development Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, Gwo-Jen; Hung, Chun-Ming; Chen, Nian-Shing

    2014-01-01

    In this study, a peer assessment-based game development approach is proposed for improving students' learning achievements, motivations and problem-solving skills. An experiment has been conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed approach in a science course at an elementary school. A total of 167 sixth graders participated in…

  1. Community-Based Equity Audits: A Practical Approach for Educational Leaders to Support Equitable Community-School Improvements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Terrance L.

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: To equitably transform urban schools of color and the neighborhoods where they are nested requires approaches that promote community equity and foster solidarity among a range of stakeholders. However, most school-community approaches solely focus on improving school-based outcomes and leave educational leaders with little guidance for…

  2. A New Approach for Improving Reliability of Personal Navigation Devices under Harsh GNSS Signal Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gérard Lachapelle

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available In natural and urban canyon environments, Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS signals suffer from various challenges such as signal multipath, limited or lack of signal availability and poor geometry. Inertial sensors are often employed to improve the solution continuity under poor GNSS signal quality and availability conditions. Various fault detection schemes have been proposed in the literature to detect and remove biased GNSS measurements to obtain a more reliable navigation solution. However, many of these methods are found to be sub-optimal and often lead to unavailability of reliability measures, mostly because of the improper characterization of the measurement errors. A robust filtering architecture is thus proposed which assumes a heavy-tailed distribution for the measurement errors. Moreover, the proposed filter is capable of adapting to the changing GNSS signal conditions such as when moving from open sky conditions to deep canyons. Results obtained by processing data collected in various GNSS challenged environments show that the proposed scheme provides a robust navigation solution without having to excessively reject usable measurements. The tests reported herein show improvements of nearly 15% and 80% for position accuracy and reliability, respectively, when applying the above approach.

  3. Epidemic surveillance using an electronic medical record: an empiric approach to performance improvement.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongzhang Zheng

    Full Text Available BACKGROUNDS: Electronic medical records (EMR form a rich repository of information that could benefit public health. We asked how structured and free-text narrative EMR data should be combined to improve epidemic surveillance for acute respiratory infections (ARI. METHODS: Eight previously characterized ARI case detection algorithms (CDA were applied to historical EMR entries to create authentic time series of daily ARI case counts (background. An epidemic model simulated influenza cases (injection. From the time of the injection, cluster-detection statistics were applied daily on paired background+injection (combined and background-only time series. This cycle was then repeated with the injection shifted to each week of the evaluation year. We computed: a the time from injection to the first statistical alarm uniquely found in the combined dataset (Detection Delay; b how often alarms originated in the background-only dataset (false-alarm rate, or FAR; and c the number of cases found within these false alarms (Caseload. For each CDA, we plotted the Detection Delay as a function of FAR or Caseload, over a broad range of alarm thresholds. RESULTS: CDAs that combined text analyses seeking ARI symptoms in clinical notes with provider-assigned diagnostic codes in order to maximize the precision rather than the sensitivity of case-detection lowered Detection Delay at any given FAR or Caseload. CONCLUSION: An empiric approach can guide the integration of EMR data into case-detection methods that improve both the timeliness and efficiency of epidemic detection.

  4. Implementation of Authentic Learning and Assessment through STEM Education Approach to Improve Students’ Metacognitive Skills

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ilman Anwari

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The important aspects of improving metacognitive skills are knowledge, intelligence, experience, and practice. STEM education is considered to be one of the most influential approaches to encouraging students to be self-regulated learners. In STEM education lessons, students are provided many opportunities to develop their thinking skills (metacognitive skills, critical and creative thinking. The goals of this study were to identify the effects of STEM education in the improvement of metacognitive skills, and to investigate metacognitive activities in STEM education. The participants were middle school students in the third year. The research instrument was the Metacognitive Activities Inventory (MCAI, used to identify changes in metacognitive skills before and after the lessons. Furthermore, portfolios were used to record students’ learning processes and help them reflect on their thinking and the tasks. The results show no significant changes in metacognitive skills. However, STEM education engages students in metacognitive activities. Therefore, implementation of STEM education in the classroom provides opportunities to students for understanding the importance of the integration of different disciplines and its applications. In addition, STEM education can increase students’ interest in science lessons.

  5. Improving long time behavior of Poisson bracket mapping equation: a non-Hamiltonian approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Hyun Woo; Rhee, Young Min

    2014-05-14

    Understanding nonadiabatic dynamics in complex systems is a challenging subject. A series of semiclassical approaches have been proposed to tackle the problem in various settings. The Poisson bracket mapping equation (PBME) utilizes a partial Wigner transform and a mapping representation for its formulation, and has been developed to describe nonadiabatic processes in an efficient manner. Operationally, it is expressed as a set of Hamilton's equations of motion, similar to more conventional classical molecular dynamics. However, this original Hamiltonian PBME sometimes suffers from a large deviation in accuracy especially in the long time limit. Here, we propose a non-Hamiltonian variant of PBME to improve its behavior especially in that limit. As a benchmark, we simulate spin-boson and photosynthetic model systems and find that it consistently outperforms the original PBME and its Ehrenfest style variant. We explain the source of this improvement by decomposing the components of the mapping Hamiltonian and by assessing the energy flow between the system and the bath. We discuss strengths and weaknesses of our scheme with a viewpoint of offering future prospects.

  6. An improved least cost routing approach for WDM optical network without wavelength converters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonani, Luiz H.; Forghani-elahabad, Majid

    2016-12-01

    Routing and wavelength assignment (RWA) problem has been an attractive problem in optical networks, and consequently several algorithms have been proposed in the literature to solve this problem. The most known techniques for the dynamic routing subproblem are fixed routing, fixed-alternate routing, and adaptive routing methods. The first one leads to a high blocking probability (BP) and the last one includes a high computational complexity and requires immense backing from the control and management protocols. The second one suggests a trade-off between performance and complexity, and hence we consider it to improve in our work. In fact, considering the RWA problem in a wavelength routed optical network with no wavelength converter, an improved technique is proposed for the routing subproblem in order to decrease the BP of the network. Based on fixed-alternate approach, the first k shortest paths (SPs) between each node pair is determined. We then rearrange the SPs according to a newly defined cost for the links and paths. Upon arriving a connection request, the sorted paths are consecutively checked for an available wavelength according to the most-used technique. We implement our proposed algorithm and the least-hop fixed-alternate algorithm to show how the rearrangement of SPs contributes to a lower BP in the network. The numerical results demonstrate the efficiency of our proposed algorithm in comparison with the others, considering different number of available wavelengths.

  7. A new approach for improving reliability of personal navigation devices under harsh GNSS signal conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhital, Anup; Bancroft, Jared B; Lachapelle, Gérard

    2013-11-07

    In natural and urban canyon environments, Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) signals suffer from various challenges such as signal multipath, limited or lack of signal availability and poor geometry. Inertial sensors are often employed to improve the solution continuity under poor GNSS signal quality and availability conditions. Various fault detection schemes have been proposed in the literature to detect and remove biased GNSS measurements to obtain a more reliable navigation solution. However, many of these methods are found to be sub-optimal and often lead to unavailability of reliability measures, mostly because of the improper characterization of the measurement errors. A robust filtering architecture is thus proposed which assumes a heavy-tailed distribution for the measurement errors. Moreover, the proposed filter is capable of adapting to the changing GNSS signal conditions such as when moving from open sky conditions to deep canyons. Results obtained by processing data collected in various GNSS challenged environments show that the proposed scheme provides a robust navigation solution without having to excessively reject usable measurements. The tests reported herein show improvements of nearly 15% and 80% for position accuracy and reliability, respectively, when applying the above approach.

  8. Advances in Research on the Approaches of Improving Water Utilization Efficiency in Rice

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Ming-sheng; HUANG You-zhong; ZHANG Guo-ping

    2005-01-01

    Water shortage is increasingly an important factor limiting the sustainable development of global economy, posing a huge threat to social security and human existence. Water usage in agriculture accounts for about 70% of total water consumption in the world, and rice cultivation is in turn the largest water user, which accounts for about 50% of total water usage in agriculture. Therefore, it is quite important to improve water utilization efficiency to reduce water consumption in rice.Water stress causes severe inhibition of plant growth and development as well as yield reduction, however the extent of inhibition or reduction varies greatly with the growth stages, duration and severity of stress, and plant genotypes. In rice,drought resistance and water utilization efficiency might be improved by developing stress resistant cultivars and conducting proper agronomic practices. It is hence imperative to determine the suitable criteria in morphological and physiological traits for drought resistance and water utilization efficiency in conventional breeding of rice. At present, leaf rolling, leaf water potential and carbon isotope discrimination are commonly used criteria for the evaluation and identification of germplasm with high drought resistance or water utilization efficiency. With rapid development of molecular biology,marker-assisted selection has been used in rice breeding against water stress. In this review, therefore, the agronomic aspect of water saving techniques such as selection of suitable rice cultivars, planting pattern, mulching, deficit irrigation and alternative drying and moist irrigation are discussed and effective approaches are also recommended.

  9. A Feasible Approach for Improving Accuracy of Ground Deformation Measured by D-InSAR

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHANG Zhan-qiang; GONG Hui-li; ZHANG Jing-fa; GONG Li-xia

    2007-01-01

    D-InSAR is currently one of the most popular research tools in the field of Microwave Remote Sensing. It is unrivaled in its aspect of measuring ground deformation due to its advantages such as high resolution, continuous spatial-coverage and dynamics. However, there are still a few major problems to be solved urgently as a result of the intrinsic complexity of this technique. One of the problems deals with improving the accuracy of measured ground deformation. In this paper, various factors affecting the accuracy of ground deformation measured by D-InSAR are systematically analyzed and investigated by means of the law of measurement error propagation. At the same time, we prove that the ground deformation error not only depends on the errors of perpendicular baselines as well as the errors of the interferometric phase for topographic pair and differential pair, but also on the combination of the relationship of perpendicular baselines for topographic pairs and differential pairs. Furthermore, a feasible approach for improving the accuracy of measured ground deformation is proposed, which is of positive significance in the practical application of D-InSAR.

  10. Renal trauma: kidney preservation through improved vascular control-a refined approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McAninch, J W; Carroll, P R

    1982-04-01

    Indications for renal exploration, nephrectomy, or renal repair for patients with renal trauma continue to be a subject of controversy. The present survey evaluates the results of two series of patients from a single hospital having had renal exploration for injury: Series I (1964-1973) 185 patients previously reported; and Series II (1977-1981), 190 patients. The indications for renal exploration were generally the same in each series. In Series II we used a uniform technique for control of the renal artery and vein before entering Gerota's fascia and exploring the kidney. When renal explorations were required, nephrectomy rates were reduced by this technique to 18% (seven of 39) in Series II, compared to 56% (19 of 34) in Series I. Comparison of the two series indicates that renal salvage can be improved by a consistent approach to evaluation, specific indications for retroperitoneal exploration, and vascular control before opening the retroperitoneum. Results of repair show that renography or partial nephrectomy was performed successfully in 82% of operated cases. All nephrectomies in series II were done because of massive renal destruction or as life-saving procedures for hemorrhage. No patient in Series II having had renal repair needed reoperation or had delayed hemorrhage, urine extravasation, retroperitoneal abscess, or hypertension. Although both time periods had comparable numbers of renal injury and comparable numbers of renal explorations, attention to the above criteria made possible significant improvement in kidney salvage.

  11. Heat rate improvement at Sunflower Electric`s Holcomb Station - a programmatic approach

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Linville, C.; Nelson, K.E.; DesJardins, R.R.

    1996-05-01

    This paper describes the heat rate improvement program implemented at Sunflower Electric Power Corporations Holcomb Generating Station located in Holcomb, Kansas. The Holcomb Station is a large coal-fired generating plant that supplies electricity to Southwestern. Kansas and surrounding states. In 1993, Sunflower Electric (SEPC) established a continuing heat rate improvement program at the Holcomb Station which consisted of a periodic performance test program in combination with continuous on-line monitoring. This paper provides an overview of the test program and initial results and describes a unique approach to monitoring boiler feed pump performance especially suitable for on-line monitoring. implementation of a 15-user LAN-based on-line performance monitoring system is also described. In addition to technical issues, the paper addresses some of the {open_quotes}human factors{close_quotes} encountered while promoting acceptance and use of the on-line monitoring system by all levels of plant personnel. The importance of proper program planning and long term management support is stressed.

  12. Ascertainment-adjusted parameter estimation approach to improve robustness against misspecification of health monitoring methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juesas, P.; Ramasso, E.

    2016-12-01

    Condition monitoring aims at ensuring system safety which is a fundamental requirement for industrial applications and that has become an inescapable social demand. This objective is attained by instrumenting the system and developing data analytics methods such as statistical models able to turn data into relevant knowledge. One difficulty is to be able to correctly estimate the parameters of those methods based on time-series data. This paper suggests the use of the Weighted Distribution Theory together with the Expectation-Maximization algorithm to improve parameter estimation in statistical models with latent variables with an application to health monotonic under uncertainty. The improvement of estimates is made possible by incorporating uncertain and possibly noisy prior knowledge on latent variables in a sound manner. The latent variables are exploited to build a degradation model of dynamical system represented as a sequence of discrete states. Examples on Gaussian Mixture Models, Hidden Markov Models (HMM) with discrete and continuous outputs are presented on both simulated data and benchmarks using the turbofan engine datasets. A focus on the application of a discrete HMM to health monitoring under uncertainty allows to emphasize the interest of the proposed approach in presence of different operating conditions and fault modes. It is shown that the proposed model depicts high robustness in presence of noisy and uncertain prior.

  13. An improved multi-exposure approach for high quality holographic femtosecond laser patterning

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhang, Chenchu; Hu, Yanlei, E-mail: huyl@ustc.edu.cn, E-mail: jwl@ustc.edu.cn; Li, Jiawen, E-mail: huyl@ustc.edu.cn, E-mail: jwl@ustc.edu.cn; Lao, Zhaoxin; Ni, Jincheng; Chu, Jiaru; Huang, Wenhao; Wu, Dong [Department of Precision Machinery and Precision Instrumentation, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026 (China)

    2014-12-01

    High efficiency two photon polymerization through single exposure via spatial light modulator (SLM) has been used to decrease the fabrication time and rapidly realize various micro/nanostructures, but the surface quality remains a big problem due to the speckle noise of optical intensity distribution at the defocused plane. Here, a multi-exposure approach which used tens of computer generate holograms successively loaded on SLM is presented to significantly improve the optical uniformity without losing efficiency. By applying multi-exposure, we found that the uniformity at the defocused plane was increased from ∼0.02 to ∼0.6 according to our simulation. The fabricated two series of letters “HELLO” and “USTC” under single-and multi-exposure in our experiment also verified that the surface quality was greatly improved. Moreover, by this method, several kinds of beam splitters with high quality, e.g., 2 × 2, 5 × 5 Daman, and complex nonseperate 5 × 5, gratings were fabricated with both of high quality and short time (<1 min, 95% time-saving). This multi-exposure SLM-two-photon polymerization method showed the promising prospect in rapidly fabricating and integrating various binary optical devices and their systems.

  14. Surgical treatment of Peyronie's disease: choosing the best approach to improve patient satisfaction

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Paulo H. Egydio

    2008-01-01

    Aim: To discuss important points on medical history, preoperative evaluation, real expectations, and selection of the appropriate surgical procedure to improve patient satisfaction after surgical procedures for Peyronie's disease. Methods:Recent advances in approaches to Peyronie's disease are discussed based on the literature and personal experiences.Issues concerning surgical indication, patient selection, surgical techniques, and grafting are discussed. Lengthening procedures on the convex side of the penile curvature by means of grafting offer the best possible gain from a reconstruction standpoint. Penile rectification and rigidity are required to achieve a completely functional penis. Most patients experience associated erectile dysfunction (ED), and penile straightening alone may not be enough to restore complete function. Twenty-five patients were submitted to total penile reconstruction on length and girth with concomitant penile prosthesis implant. The maximum length restoration was possible and limited by the length of the maintained the penis straight. No infections occurred. Sexual intercourse was restored in all patients and all reported recovered self-esteem. Conclusion: Improving patient satisfaction with the surgical treatment includes proper preoperative evaluation on stable disease, penile shortening, vascular and erectile status, patient decision and selection as well as extensive discussion on surgical technique for restoring functional penis (length and rigidity). Length and girth

  15. Biological and physical approaches to improve induced resistance against green mold of stored citrus fruit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arras, G; Dhallewin, G; Petretto, A; Marceddu, S; Loche, M; Agabbio, M

    2005-01-01

    Health and environmental concerns have point out the need to improve or change several manufacturing steps in the food chain. In this context particular attention should be given to the technologies involved in fruits and vegetables production. Nearly all fresh fruit and vegetables are subjected to different periods of storage and/or shelf-life before of their consumption. This implies the need to protect the commodities from microbial spoilage. Some Citrus species (e.g. lemon and grapefruit) may be stored for several months before consumption and then post-harvest treatments are essential to contain green (Penicillium digitatum) and blue (P. italicum) moulds. Alternative approaches to chemicals usually have a lower efficacy in containing rots but fulfill the consumer's expectation. Among the alternative strategies, the improvement of host natural resistance is promising. In this regard, we report some results concerning the use of biotic (yeast) and abiotic agents as inducers of phytoalexin (i.e. scoparone and/or scopoletin) accumulation in Citrus rind and its importance in the control of fungal decay. In all experiments the inducers were applied on fruits before or 24 h after inoculation with P. digitatum and the rot severity was monitored 7 days later. The accumulation of phytoalexins was monitored according to a standard methodology by HPLC. In all experiments a positive correlation was found between increase of the phytoalexin scoparone in host tissue and reduction of decay.

  16. An improved hyperspectral image classification approach based on ISODATA and SKR method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Pu; Ye, Xiao-feng; Yu, Hui; Zhang, Zhi-jie; Cai, Yu-fei; Tang, Xin; Tang, Wei; Wang, Chensheng

    2016-11-01

    Hyper-spectral images can not only provide spatial information but also a wealth of spectral information. A short list of applications includes environmental mapping, global change research, geological research, wetlands mapping, assessment of trafficability, plant and mineral identification and abundance estimation, crop analysis, and bathymetry. A crucial aspect of hyperspectral image analysis is the identification of materials present in an object or scene being imaged. Classification of a hyperspectral image sequence amounts to identifying which pixels contain various spectrally distinct materials that have been specified by the user. Several techniques for classification of multi-hyperspectral pixels have been used from minimum distance and maximum likelihood classifiers to correlation matched filter-based approaches such as spectral signature matching and the spectral angle mapper. In this paper, an improved hyperspectral images classification algorithm is proposed. In the proposed method, an improved similarity measurement method is applied, in which both the spectrum similarity and space similarity are considered. We use two different weighted matrix to estimate the spectrum similarity and space similarity between two pixels, respectively. And then whether these two pixels represent the same material can be determined. In order to reduce the computational cost the wavelet transform is also applied prior to extract the spectral and space features. The proposed method is tested using hyperspectral imagery collected by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Experimental results the efficiency of this new method on hyperspectral images associated with space object material identification.

  17. Overcoming synecdoche: why practice development and quality improvement approaches should be better integrated

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kim Manley

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available We are pleased to be provided with an opportunity to comment on the thoughtful article by Gavin Lavery about the relationship between practice development and quality improvement, published in 2016 in the IPDJ. We also respect and value the opportunity to bring different perspectives together – something alluded to in Lavery’s article when discussing the relationship between service improvement and quality improvement. We acknowledge Lavery’s humility and openness to different perspectives as demonstrated by his willingness to participate in a foundation practice development school. We also accept that there are many different ways of achieving the same outcomes, by using a range of tools flexibly based on shared and common principles, as well as knowing the people you work with and being clear about purpose. At a time of scant resources in healthcare, it is vital that we avoid duplication and integrate approaches if service users are to experience the continuity and seamlessness of a person-centred approach to meeting the health and social care needs of individuals and communities. Lavery makes reference to ‘systems and processes’. It is important when discussing systems that we have a sense of shared meaning, as systems comprise structures, processes and patterns of behaviour. It is often the latter that are most challenging to address when trying to develop practice and improve quality (McCormack et al., 2008. Patterns of behaviours are an important focus when engaging staff in learning and reflection. Helping practitioners to become self-aware about the consequences of their actions on others (enlightenment, particularly in relation to being person-centred, has a strong history in practice development, linked to using the workplace as the main resource for active learning (Dewing, 2008. While these insights have relevance for both practice development and quality improvement, it is the former, through its theoretical development

  18. Improved outcomes with direct percutaneous CT guided lumbar synovial cyst treatment: advanced approaches and techniques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz, A Orlando; Tekchandani, Leena

    2014-12-01

    To determine if lumbar synovial cyst rupture in symptomatic patients results in improved clinical outcome when using direct tandem and/or coaxial percutaneous CT guided techniques. 20 patients with unilateral lower extremity radiculopathy and/or low back pain underwent CT guided percutaneous treatment for their symptomatic lumbar synovial cysts. Cysts were identified with the use of a low osmolar non-ionic contrast agent via facet joint injection or through direct injection. Cyst rupture, using a direct tandem and/or coaxial technique, was attempted in all patients using an 18 gauge guide needle and a 22 gauge insert needle. Following attempted cyst aspiration, cyst rupture was performed using 1-3 mL of a mixture of methylprednisolone (2 mL, 80 mg) and bupivacaine (3 mL, 0.5%). All patients were followed-up in clinic for a minimum of 6 months after their procedures and up to a maximum of 24 months. 11 patients were male and nine were female, with an average age of 65.6 years. 17 patients presented with severe unilateral lower extremity radiculopathy and three patients were experiencing low back pain. One of the patients had two synovial cysts, and therefore a total of 21 lumbar synovial cysts were treated in this group of patients. Direct cyst puncture was achieved using a tandem technique in nine patients, a coaxial interlaminar approach in seven patients, a coaxial transforaminal approach in two patients, and a coaxial trans-facet approach in three patients. Cyst rupture was documented in all cases, as evidenced by CT confirmation of cyst decompression and contrast agent extravasation into the epidural space. The mean surveillance period in these patients was 18 months. Six patients experienced their usual radicular pain within 2 months of their treatment. Four of these patients were re-treated for recurrent smaller cysts. These patients have not had a recurrence at 24 months of follow up. Two of these six patients elected to undergo open

  19. An ensemble classification approach for improved Land use/cover change detection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chellasamy, M.; Ferré, T. P. A.; Humlekrog Greve, M.; Larsen, R.; Chinnasamy, U.

    2014-11-01

    Change Detection (CD) methods based on post-classification comparison approaches are claimed to provide potentially reliable results. They are considered to be most obvious quantitative method in the analysis of Land Use Land Cover (LULC) changes which provides from - to change information. But, the performance of post-classification comparison approaches highly depends on the accuracy of classification of individual images used for comparison. Hence, we present a classification approach that produce accurate classified results which aids to obtain improved change detection results. Machine learning is a part of broader framework in change detection, where neural networks have drawn much attention. Neural network algorithms adaptively estimate continuous functions from input data without mathematical representation of output dependence on input. A common practice for classification is to use Multi-Layer-Perceptron (MLP) neural network with backpropogation learning algorithm for prediction. To increase the ability of learning and prediction, multiple inputs (spectral, texture, topography, and multi-temporal information) are generally stacked to incorporate diversity of information. On the other hand literatures claims backpropagation algorithm to exhibit weak and unstable learning in use of multiple inputs, while dealing with complex datasets characterized by mixed uncertainty levels. To address the problem of learning complex information, we propose an ensemble classification technique that incorporates multiple inputs for classification unlike traditional stacking of multiple input data. In this paper, we present an Endorsement Theory based ensemble classification that integrates multiple information, in terms of prediction probabilities, to produce final classification results. Three different input datasets are used in this study: spectral, texture and indices, from SPOT-4 multispectral imagery captured on 1998 and 2003. Each SPOT image is classified

  20. Multi-approach model for improving agrochemical safety among rice farmers in Pathumthani, Thailand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siriwong W

    2012-07-01

    safety precautions and the use of faulty protective gear. After 6 months, the intervention program showed significant improvements in the overall scores on knowledge, beliefs, behaviors, and home pesticide safety in the study group (P < 0.05. Therefore, this intervention model is effective in improving agrochemical safety behaviors among Khlong Seven Community rice farmers. These findings demonstrate that a multi-approach model for improving agrochemical safety behaviors can lead to sustainable prevention of agrochemical hazards for farmers.Keywords: rice farmer, agrochemical safety, community-based intervention, model

  1. A Lean Six Sigma approach to the improvement of the selenium analysis method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bronwyn C. Cloete

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Reliable results represent the pinnacle assessment of quality of an analytical laboratory, and therefore variability is considered to be a critical quality problem associated with the selenium analysis method executed at Western Cape Provincial Veterinary Laboratory (WCPVL. The elimination and control of variability is undoubtedly of significant importance because of the narrow margin of safety between toxic and deficient doses of the trace element for good animal health. A quality methodology known as Lean Six Sigma was believed to present the most feasible solution for overcoming the adverse effect of variation, through steps towards analytical process improvement. Lean Six Sigma represents a form of scientific method type, which is empirical, inductive and deductive, and systematic, which relies on data, and is fact-based. The Lean Six Sigma methodology comprises five macro-phases, namely Define, Measure, Analyse, Improve and Control (DMAIC. Both qualitative and quantitative laboratory data were collected in terms of these phases. Qualitative data were collected by using quality-tools, namely an Ishikawa diagram, a Pareto chart, Kaizen analysis and a Failure Mode Effect analysis tool. Quantitative laboratory data, based on the analytical chemistry test method, were collected through a controlled experiment. The controlled experiment entailed 13 replicated runs of the selenium test method, whereby 11 samples were repetitively analysed, whilst Certified Reference Material (CRM was also included in 6 of the runs. Laboratory results obtained from the controlled experiment was analysed by using statistical methods, commonly associated with quality validation of chemistry procedures. Analysis of both sets of data yielded an improved selenium analysis method, believed to provide greater reliability of results, in addition to a greatly reduced cycle time and superior control features. Lean Six Sigma may therefore be regarded as a valuable tool in any

  2. A Lean Six Sigma approach to the improvement of the selenium analysis method.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cloete, Bronwyn C; Bester, André

    2012-11-02

    Reliable results represent the pinnacle assessment of quality of an analytical laboratory, and therefore variability is considered to be a critical quality problem associated with the selenium analysis method executed at Western Cape Provincial Veterinary Laboratory (WCPVL). The elimination and control of variability is undoubtedly of significant importance because of the narrow margin of safety between toxic and deficient doses of the trace element for good animal health. A quality methodology known as Lean Six Sigma was believed to present the most feasible solution for overcoming the adverse effect of variation, through steps towards analytical process improvement. Lean Six Sigma represents a form of scientific method type, which is empirical, inductive and deductive, and systematic, which relies on data, and is fact-based. The Lean Six Sigma methodology comprises five macro-phases, namely Define, Measure, Analyse, Improve and Control (DMAIC). Both qualitative and quantitative laboratory data were collected in terms of these phases. Qualitative data were collected by using quality-tools, namely an Ishikawa diagram, a Pareto chart, Kaizen analysis and a Failure Mode Effect analysis tool. Quantitative laboratory data, based on the analytical chemistry test method, were collected through a controlled experiment. The controlled experiment entailed 13 replicated runs of the selenium test method, whereby 11 samples were repetitively analysed, whilst Certified Reference Material (CRM) was also included in 6 of the runs. Laboratory results obtained from the controlled experiment was analysed by using statistical methods, commonly associated with quality validation of chemistry procedures. Analysis of both sets of data yielded an improved selenium analysis method, believed to provide greater reliability of results, in addition to a greatly reduced cycle time and superior control features. Lean Six Sigma may therefore be regarded as a valuable tool in any laboratory, and

  3. IMPROVEMENT EVALUATION ON CERAMIC ROOF EXTRACTION USING WORLDVIEW-2 IMAGERY AND GEOGRAPHIC DATA MINING APPROACH

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. S. Brum-Bastos

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Advances in geotechnologies and in remote sensing have improved analysis of urban environments. The new sensors are increasingly suited to urban studies, due to the enhancement in spatial, spectral and radiometric resolutions. Urban environments present high heterogeneity, which cannot be tackled using pixel–based approaches on high resolution images. Geographic Object–Based Image Analysis (GEOBIA has been consolidated as a methodology for urban land use and cover monitoring; however, classification of high resolution images is still troublesome. This study aims to assess the improvement on ceramic roof classification using WorldView-2 images due to the increase of 4 new bands besides the standard “Blue-Green-Red-Near Infrared” bands. Our methodology combines GEOBIA, C4.5 classification tree algorithm, Monte Carlo simulation and statistical tests for classification accuracy. Two samples groups were considered: 1 eight multispectral and panchromatic bands, and 2 four multispectral and panchromatic bands, representing previous high-resolution sensors. The C4.5 algorithm generates a decision tree that can be used for classification; smaller decision trees are closer to the semantic networks produced by experts on GEOBIA, while bigger trees, are not straightforward to implement manually, but are more accurate. The choice for a big or small tree relies on the user’s skills to implement it. This study aims to determine for what kind of user the addition of the 4 new bands might be beneficial: 1 the common user (smaller trees or 2 a more skilled user with coding and/or data mining abilities (bigger trees. In overall the classification was improved by the addition of the four new bands for both types of users.

  4. Improvement Evaluation on Ceramic Roof Extraction Using WORLDVIEW-2 Imagery and Geographic Data Mining Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brum-Bastos, V. S.; Ribeiro, B. M. G.; Pinho, C. M. D.; Korting, T. S.; Fonseca, L. M. G.

    2016-06-01

    Advances in geotechnologies and in remote sensing have improved analysis of urban environments. The new sensors are increasingly suited to urban studies, due to the enhancement in spatial, spectral and radiometric resolutions. Urban environments present high heterogeneity, which cannot be tackled using pixel-based approaches on high resolution images. Geographic Object-Based Image Analysis (GEOBIA) has been consolidated as a methodology for urban land use and cover monitoring; however, classification of high resolution images is still troublesome. This study aims to assess the improvement on ceramic roof classification using WorldView-2 images due to the increase of 4 new bands besides the standard "Blue-Green-Red-Near Infrared" bands. Our methodology combines GEOBIA, C4.5 classification tree algorithm, Monte Carlo simulation and statistical tests for classification accuracy. Two samples groups were considered: 1) eight multispectral and panchromatic bands, and 2) four multispectral and panchromatic bands, representing previous high-resolution sensors. The C4.5 algorithm generates a decision tree that can be used for classification; smaller decision trees are closer to the semantic networks produced by experts on GEOBIA, while bigger trees, are not straightforward to implement manually, but are more accurate. The choice for a big or small tree relies on the user's skills to implement it. This study aims to determine for what kind of user the addition of the 4 new bands might be beneficial: 1) the common user (smaller trees) or 2) a more skilled user with coding and/or data mining abilities (bigger trees). In overall the classification was improved by the addition of the four new bands for both types of users.

  5. New approaches to improve the performance of the PEM based fuel cell power systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Woojin

    Fuel cells are expected to play an important role in future power generation. However, significant technical challenges remain and the commercial breakthrough of fuel cells is hindered by the high price of fuel cell components. As is well known, the fuel cells do not provide the robust source characteristics required to effectively follow the load during significant load steps and they have limited overload-handling capability. Further, the performance of the fuel cell is significantly degraded when the CO (Carbon Monoxide) is contained in the hydrogen fuel. In this thesis several new approaches to improve the performance of PEM based fuel cell power systems are discussed. In the first section an impedance model of the Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell Stack (PEMFCS) is first proposed. This equivalent circuit model of the fuel cell stack is derived by a frequency response analysis (FRA) technique to evaluate the effects of the ripple current generated by the power-conditioning unit. Experimental results are presented to show the effects of the ripple currents. In the second section, a fuel cell powered UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) system is proposed. In this approach, two PEM Fuel Cell modules along with suitable DC/DC and DC/AC power electronic converter modules are employed. A Supercapacitor module is also employed to compensate for instantaneous power fluctuations including overload and to overcome the slow dynamics of the fuel processor such as reformers. A complete design example for a 1-kVA system is presented. In the third section, an advanced power converter topology is proposed to significantly improve the CO tolerance on PEM based fuel cell power systems. An additional two-stage dc-dc converter with a supercapacitor module is connected to the fuel cell to draw a low frequency (0.5Hz) pulsating current of the specific amplitude (20-30[A]) from the fuel cell stack. CO on the catalyst surface can be electro-oxidized by using this technique, and

  6. Using total quality management approach to improve patient safety by preventing medication error incidences(*).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yousef, Nadin; Yousef, Farah

    2017-09-04

    Whereas one of the predominant causes of medication errors is a drug administration error, a previous study related to our investigations and reviews estimated that the incidences of medication errors constituted 6.7 out of 100 administrated medication doses. Therefore, we aimed by using six sigma approach to propose a way that reduces these errors to become less than 1 out of 100 administrated medication doses by improving healthcare professional education and clearer handwritten prescriptions. The study was held in a General Government Hospital. First, we systematically studied the current medication use process. Second, we used six sigma approach by utilizing the five-step DMAIC process (Define, Measure, Analyze, Implement, Control) to find out the real reasons behind such errors. This was to figure out a useful solution to avoid medication error incidences in daily healthcare professional practice. Data sheet was used in Data tool and Pareto diagrams were used in Analyzing tool. In our investigation, we reached out the real cause behind administrated medication errors. As Pareto diagrams used in our study showed that the fault percentage in administrated phase was 24.8%, while the percentage of errors related to prescribing phase was 42.8%, 1.7 folds. This means that the mistakes in prescribing phase, especially because of the poor handwritten prescriptions whose percentage in this phase was 17.6%, are responsible for the consequent) mistakes in this treatment process later on. Therefore, we proposed in this study an effective low cost strategy based on the behavior of healthcare workers as Guideline Recommendations to be followed by the physicians. This method can be a prior caution to decrease errors in prescribing phase which may lead to decrease the administrated medication error incidences to less than 1%. This improvement way of behavior can be efficient to improve hand written prescriptions and decrease the consequent errors related to administrated

  7. Improving Science Pedagogic Quality in Elementary School Using Process Skill Approach Can Motivate Student to Be Active in Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sukiniarti

    2016-01-01

    On global era todays, as the professional teacher should be improving their pedagogic competency, including to improve their science pedagogy quality. This study is aimed to identify: (1) Process skill approach which has been used by Elementary School Teacher in science learning; (2) Teacher's opinion that process skill can motivate the student to…

  8. A Novel Approach for Shearer Cutting Load Identification through Integration of Improved Particle Swarm Optimization and Wavelet Neural Network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhongbin Wang

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available In order to accurately identify the change of shearer cutting load, a novel approach was proposed through integration of improved particle swarm optimization and wavelet neural network. An improved updating strategy for inertia weight was presented to avoid falling into the local optimum. Moreover, immune mechanism was applied in the proposed approach to enhance the population diversity and improve the quality of solution, and the flowchart of the proposed approach was designed. Furthermore, a simulation example was carried out and comparison results indicated that the proposed approach was feasible, efficient, and outperforming others. Finally, an industrial application example of coal mining face was demonstrated to specify the effect of the proposed system.

  9. Equation of state in 2+1 flavor QCD with improved Wilson quarks by the fixed scale approach

    CERN Document Server

    Umeda, T; Ejiri, S; Hatsuda, T; Kanaya, K; Maezawa, Y; Ohno, H

    2012-01-01

    We study the equation of state in 2+1 flavor QCD with nonperturbatively improved Wilson quarks coupled with the RG-improved Iwasaki glue. We apply the $T$-integration method to nonperturbatively calculate the equation of state by the fixed-scale approach. With the fixed-scale approach, we can purely vary the temperature on a line of constant physics without changing the system size and renormalization constants. Unlike the conventional fixed-$N_t$ approach, it is easy to keep scaling violations small at low temperature in the fixed scale approach. We study 2+1 flavor QCD at light quark mass corresponding to $m_\\pi/m_\\rho \\simeq 0.63$, while the strange quark mass is chosen around the physical point. Although the light quark masses are heavier than the physical values yet, our equation of state is roughly consistent with recent results with highly improved staggered quarks at large $N_t$.

  10. The "flipped classroom" approach: Stimulating positive learning attitudes and improving mastery of histology among medical students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Xin; Ka Ho Lee, Kenneth; Chang, Eric Y; Yang, Xuesong

    2017-07-01

    Traditional medical education methodologies have been dramatically impacted by the introduction of new teaching approaches over the past few decades. In particular, the "flipped classroom" format has drawn a great deal of attention. However, evidence regarding the effectiveness of the flipped model remains limited due to a lack of outcome-based studies. In the present study, a pilot histology curriculum of the organ systems was implemented among 24 Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) students in a flipped classroom format at Jinan University. As a control, another 87 TCM students followed a conventional histology curriculum. The academic performance of the two groups was compared. In addition, a questionnaire was administered to the flipped classroom group. The test scores for the flipped classroom participants were found to be significantly higher compared to non-participants in the control group. These results suggest that students may benefit from using the flipped classroom format. Follow-up questionnaires also revealed that most of the flipped classroom participants undertook relatively more earnest preparations before class and were actively involved in classroom learning activities. The teachers were also found to have more class time for leading discussions and delivering quizzes rather than repeating rote didactics. Consequently, the increased teaching and learning activities contributed to a better performance among the flipped classroom group. This pilot study suggests that a flipped classroom approach can be used to improve histology education among medical students. However, future studies employing randomization, larger numbers of students, and more precise tracking methods are needed before definitive conclusions can be drawn. Anat Sci Educ 10: 317-327. © 2016 American Association of Anatomists. © 2016 American Association of Anatomists.

  11. A multimodal approach to improving human papillomavirus vaccination in a community pharmacy setting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kenneth C Hohmeier

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Background: Community pharmacy has become a major access point for several types of vaccinations. Despite the success of vaccination programs like influenza, pneumococcal, and herpes zoster, the rates of human papillomavirus vaccination continue to lag. Objectives: The primary objective is to describe and report on the impact of a multimodal series of pharmacist-led educational interventions on human papillomavirus vaccination rates in a community pharmacy setting. The primary outcome of this study was change in pharmacist-delivered human papillomavirus vaccination throughout a corresponding 8-week period in 2014 and 2015. Methods: A single-center, quasi-experimental interrupted time series mixed-methods pilot study was used to investigate a pharmacist-led, multimodal educational intervention approach to improve human papillomavirus vaccination rates in the community. Results: During the 2014 control period, there were no human papillomavirus vaccines dispensed or administered according to the internal prescription dispensing software. In 2015, a total of 10 patients indicated that they were vaccinated, with 9 patients receiving their first dose and 1 patient receiving his or her second dose at the pharmacy. Pharmacist recommendation was the most reported education method for increasing patient awareness of the human papillomavirus vaccine (n = 10. Conclusion: This study demonstrates pharmacist designed, educational interventions may impact human papillomavirus vaccination rates in the community. Further community-based research with larger sample sizes is warranted to verify these results. Due to the unique barriers to human papillomavirus vaccination, a multimodal and inter-professional approach such as the one presented here is warranted.

  12. GRISOTTO: A greedy approach to improve combinatorial algorithms for motif discovery with prior knowledge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oliveira Arlindo L

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Position-specific priors (PSP have been used with success to boost EM and Gibbs sampler-based motif discovery algorithms. PSP information has been computed from different sources, including orthologous conservation, DNA duplex stability, and nucleosome positioning. The use of prior information has not yet been used in the context of combinatorial algorithms. Moreover, priors have been used only independently, and the gain of combining priors from different sources has not yet been studied. Results We extend RISOTTO, a combinatorial algorithm for motif discovery, by post-processing its output with a greedy procedure that uses prior information. PSP's from different sources are combined into a scoring criterion that guides the greedy search procedure. The resulting method, called GRISOTTO, was evaluated over 156 yeast TF ChIP-chip sequence-sets commonly used to benchmark prior-based motif discovery algorithms. Results show that GRISOTTO is at least as accurate as other twelve state-of-the-art approaches for the same task, even without combining priors. Furthermore, by considering combined priors, GRISOTTO is considerably more accurate than the state-of-the-art approaches for the same task. We also show that PSP's improve GRISOTTO ability to retrieve motifs from mouse ChiP-seq data, indicating that the proposed algorithm can be applied to data from a different technology and for a higher eukaryote. Conclusions The conclusions of this work are twofold. First, post-processing the output of combinatorial algorithms by incorporating prior information leads to a very efficient and effective motif discovery method. Second, combining priors from different sources is even more beneficial than considering them separately.

  13. Information Technology Service Management with Cloud Computing Approach to Improve Administration System and Online Learning Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wilianto Wilianto

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available This work discusses the development of information technology service management using cloud computing approach to improve the performance of administration system and online learning at STMIK IBBI Medan, Indonesia. The network topology is modeled and simulated for system administration and online learning. The same network topology is developed in cloud computing using Amazon AWS architecture. The model is designed and modeled using Riverbed Academic Edition Modeler to obtain values of the parameters: delay, load, CPU utilization, and throughput. The simu- lation results are the following. For network topology 1, without cloud computing, the average delay is 54  ms, load 110 000 bits/s, CPU utilization 1.1%, and throughput 440  bits/s.  With  cloud  computing,  the  average  delay  is 45 ms,  load  2 800  bits/s,  CPU  utilization  0.03%,  and throughput 540 bits/s. For network topology 2, without cloud computing, the average delay is 39  ms, load 3 500 bits/s, CPU utilization 0.02%, and throughput database server 1 400 bits/s. With cloud computing, the average delay is 26 ms, load 5 400 bits/s, CPU utilization email server 0.0001%, FTP server 0.001%, HTTP server 0.0002%, throughput email server 85 bits/s, FTP    server 100 bits/sec, and HTTP server 95  bits/s.  Thus,  the  delay, the load, and the CPU utilization decrease; but,  the throughput increases. Information technology service management with cloud computing approach has better performance.

  14. PREFACE: Mini EURO Conference on Improving Healthcare: new challenges, new approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-05-01

    The XXXI Euro Mini Conference on Improving Healthcare: new challenges, new approaches took place in Coimbra, Portugal, from the 30th March to the 1st April 2015. This volume contains 17 contributed papers, presented during the Conference. Recent advances in medicine allow us to live longer and healthier lives. These advances have been made possible through the joint contribution of very different scientific fields. Healthcare is nowadays better understood as a multidisciplinary field, with increasing number of challenges that can be better tackled by joint collaboration of researchers with different scientific backgrounds. The challenges that Healthcare is facing have not only to do with the ability of providing better services to all (treatments, preventive medicine, better diagnosis tools), with an increased focus on improved personalized treatment options, but also with the need to tackle an increased pressure felt by Healthcare systems: increased number of patients, some of them requiring expensive treatments, with a consequent increase in the workload for health institutions that most of the times have to deal with important budget restrictions. The Conference provided a forum in which researchers coming from different scientific disciplines discussed and shared their experience regarding methodological approaches to tackle different healthcare challenges. The Conference welcomed contributions from operational research, industrial engineering, medicine, medical physics, management, computational biology, bioinformatics and health economics, among others. The Conference had 93 enrolled participants, from 22 different nationalities: Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Hong Kong, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Lebanon, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and United States of America. These participants had very different academic backgrounds: operations research

  15. Understanding and Improving Recruitment to Randomised Controlled Trials: Qualitative Research Approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elliott, Daisy; Husbands, Samantha; Hamdy, Freddie C; Holmberg, Lars; Donovan, Jenny L

    2017-05-31

    The importance of evidence from randomised trials is now widely recognised, although recruitment is often difficult. Qualitative research has shown promise in identifying the key barriers to recruitment, and interventions have been developed to reduce organisational difficulties and support clinicians undertaking recruitment. This article provides an introduction to qualitative research techniques and explains how this approach can be used to understand-and subsequently improve-recruitment and informed consent within a range of clinical trials. A literature search was performed using Medline, Embase, and CINAHL. All studies with qualitative research methods that focused on the recruitment activity of clinicians were included in the review. The majority of studies reported that organisational difficulties and lack of time for clinical staff were key barriers to recruitment. However, a synthesis of qualitative studies highlighted the intellectual and emotional challenges that arise when combining research with clinical roles, particularly in relation to equipoise and patient eligibility. To support recruiters to become more comfortable with the design and principles of randomised controlled trials, interventions have been developed, including the QuinteT Recruitment Intervention, which comprises in-depth investigation of recruitment obstacles in real time, followed by implementation of tailored strategies to address these challenges as the trial proceeds. Qualitative research can provide important insights into the complexities of recruitment to trials and inform the development of interventions, and provide support and training initiatives as required. Investigators should consider implementing such methods in trials expected to be challenging or recruiting below target. Qualitative research is a term used to describe a range of methods that can be implemented to understand participants' perspectives and behaviours. Data are gathered from interviews, focus groups

  16. CRYPTO-STEG: A Hybrid Cryptology - Steganography Approach for Improved Data Security

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atif Bin Mansoor

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Internet is a widely used medium for transfer of information due to its reach and ease of availability. However, internet is an insecure medium and any information might be easily intercepted and viewed during its transfer. Different mechanisms like cryptology and steganography are adopted to secure the data communication over an inherently insecure medium like internet. Cryptology scrambles the information in a manner that an unintended recipient cannot easily extract the information, while steganography hides the information in a cover object so that it is transferred unnoticed in the cover. Encrypted data may not be extracted easily but causes a direct suspicion to any observer, while data hidden using steganographic techniques go inconspicuous. Cryptanalysis is the process of attacking the encrypted text to extract the information, while steganalysis is the process of detecting the disguised messages. In literature, both cryptology and steganography are treated separately. In this paper, we present our research on an improved data security paradigm, where data is first encrypted using AES (Advanced Encryption Standard and DES (Data Encryption Standard cryptology algorithms. Both plain and encrypted data is hidden in the images using Model Based and F5 steganographic techniques. Features are extracted in DWT (Discrete Wavelet Transform and DCT (Discrete Cosine Transform domains using higher order statistics for steganalysis, and subsequently used to train a FLD (Fisher Linear Discriminant classifier which is employed to categorize a separate set of images as clean or stego (containing hidden messages. Experimental results demonstrate improved data security using proposed CRYPTO-STEG approach compared to plain text steganography. Results also demonstrate that the Model Based steganography is more secure than the F5 steganography.

  17. Systematic review of approaches to using patient experience data for quality improvement in healthcare settings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gleeson, Helen; Calderon, Ana; Swami, Viren; Deighton, Jessica; Wolpert, Miranda; Edbrooke-Childs, Julian

    2016-01-01

    Objectives Explore how patient-reported experience measures (PREMs) are collected, communicated and used to inform quality improvement (QI) across healthcare settings. Design Systematic review. Setting Various primary and secondary care settings, including general practice, and acute and chronic care hospitals. Participants A full range of patient populations from (children through to the elderly) and staff (from healthcare practitioners to senior managers). Methods Scientific databases were searched (CINAHL, PsycINFO, MEDLINE and Cochrane Libraries) as was grey literature. Qualitative and quantitative studies describing collection of PREM data and subsequent QI actions in any healthcare setting were included. Risk of bias was assessed using established criteria. Of 5312 initial hits, 32 full texts were screened, and 11 were included. Results Patient experience data were most commonly collected through surveys and used to identify small areas of incremental change to services that do not require a change to clinician behaviour (eg, changes to admission processes and producing educational materials). While staff in most studies reported having made effective improvements, authors struggled to identify what those changes were or the impact they had. Conclusions Findings suggest there is no single best way to collect or use PREM data for QI, but they do suggest some key points to consider when planning such an approach. For instance, formal training is recommended, as a lack of expertise in QI and confidence in interpreting patient experience data effectively may continue to be a barrier to a successful shift towards a more patient-centred healthcare service. In the context of QI, more attention is required on how patient experience data will be used to inform changes to practice and, in turn, measure any impact these changes may have on patient experience. PMID:27531733

  18. Engage: The Science Speaker Series - A novel approach to improving science outreach and communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, R.; Hilton, E.; Rosenfield, P.

    2012-12-01

    Communicating the results and significance of basic research to the general public is of critical importance. Federal funding and university budgets are under substantial pressure, and taxpayer support of basic research is critical. Public outreach by ecologists is an important vehicle for increasing support and understanding of science in an era of anthropogenic global change. At present, very few programs or courses exist to allow young scientists the opportunity to hone and practice their public outreach skills. Although the need for science outreach and communication is recognized, graduate programs often fail to provide any training in making science accessible. Engage: The Science Speaker Series represents a unique, graduate student-led effort to improve public outreach skills. Founded in 2009, Engage was created by three science graduate students at the University of Washington. The students developed a novel, interdisciplinary curriculum to investigate why science outreach often fails, to improve graduate student communication skills, and to help students create a dynamic, public-friendly talk. The course incorporates elements of story-telling, improvisational arts, and development of analogy, all with a focus on clarity, brevity and accessibility. This course was offered to graduate students and post-doctoral researchers from a wide variety of sciences in the autumn of 2010 and 2011, and will be retaught in 2012. Students who participated in the Engage course were then given the opportunity to participate in Engage: The Science Speaker Series. This free, public-friendly speaker series has been hosted at the University of Washington campus and Seattle Town Hall, and has had substantial public attendance and participation. The growing success of Engage illustrates the need for such programs throughout graduate level science curricula. We present the impetus for the development of the program, elements of the curriculum covered in the Engage course, the

  19. ECONOMIC APPROACHES TO IMPROVE THE COMPETITIVENESS OF UKRAINIAN TRANSPORT ENTERPRISES ( THE EXAMPLE OF CIVIL AVIATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. T. Baran

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of reforming the air transport in Ukraine is the implementation of market economic transformations in economic and financial methods of the management of civil aviation operational firms, which were still formed on the basis of Soviet plan-army management principles. The author suggests the mechanism of formation of financial supply paradigm for reformed air transport firm because these reformations are to be carried out when the elaborated optimal economic-legal, investment-innovation, and (what is the most important organizational-financial complex unified methodical principles of the interaction of air transport (АТ subjects are absent (which becomes clear in the course of re-structuring them. Vital problems of formation of investment-innovation re-structuring mechanism for functioning the air transport firms are described in this article. New results of subsequent scientific research concerning financial scheme development of enterprising and commercial activities of airlines in today’s economic stabilization and growth, formation of new paradigm of economic theory and reformation of managing practice are suggested to the participants of the Conference in the course of prolonging the author’s discussion; a possible approach to the solution of financing problems for their re-structuring by means of creating new aviationtransport consortia is also suggested. The aim of creating a new consortium is to improve the economic efficiency of activity of airlines, their competitiveness in internal markets of transport services as well as to reform the system of air transport subjects in Ukraine. This is one of the complex trends for solving the problems of creating national air carrier, the organization of optimal forms and methods of financial schemes formation for measures aimed at improving the competitiveness.

  20. Student perceptions of a video-based blended learning approach for improving pediatric physical examination skills.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehmann, Ronny; Seitz, Anke; Bosse, Hans Martin; Lutz, Thomas; Huwendiek, Sören

    2016-11-01

    Physical examination skills are crucial for a medical doctor. The physical examination of children differs significantly from that of adults. Students often have only limited contact with pediatric patients to practice these skills. In order to improve the acquisition of pediatric physical examination skills during bedside teaching, we have developed a combined video-based training concept, subsequently evaluating its use and perception. Fifteen videos were compiled, demonstrating defined physical examination sequences in children of different ages. Students were encouraged to use these videos as preparation for bedside teaching during their pediatric clerkship. After bedside teaching, acceptance of this approach was evaluated using a 10-item survey, asking for the frequency of video use and the benefits to learning, self-confidence, and preparation of bedside teaching as well as the concluding OSCE. N=175 out of 299 students returned survey forms (58.5%). Students most frequently used videos, either illustrating complete examination sequences or corresponding focus examinations frequently assessed in the OSCE. Students perceived the videos as a helpful method of conveying the practical process and preparation for bedside teaching as well as the OSCE, and altogether considered them a worthwhile learning experience. Self-confidence at bedside teaching was enhanced by preparation with the videos. The demonstration of a defined standardized procedural sequence, explanatory comments, and demonstration of infrequent procedures and findings were perceived as particularly supportive. Long video segments, poor alignment with other curricular learning activities, and technical problems were perceived as less helpful. Students prefer an optional individual use of the videos, with easy technical access, thoughtful combination with the bedside teaching, and consecutive standardized practice of demonstrated procedures. Preparation with instructional videos combined with bedside

  1. Advancing the science of spatial neglect rehabilitation: an improved statistical approach with mixed linear modeling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kelly M Goedert

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Valid research on neglect rehabilitation demands a statistical approach commensurate with the characteristics of neglect rehabilitation data: Neglect arises from impairment in distinct brain networks leading to large between-subject variability in baseline symptoms and recovery trajectories. Studies enrolling medically-ill, disabled patients, may suffer from missing, unbalanced data, and small sample sizes. Finally, assessment of rehabilitation requires a description of continuous recovery trajectories. Unfortunately, the statistical method currently employed in most studies of neglect treatment (repeated-measures ANOVA does not well-address these issues. Here we review an alternative, mixed linear modeling (MLM, that is more appropriate for assessing change over time. MLM better accounts for between-subject heterogeneity in baseline neglect severity and in recovery trajectory. MLM does not require complete or balanced data, nor does it make strict assumptions regarding the data structure. Furthermore, because MLM better models between-subject heterogeneity it often results in increased power to observe treatment effects with smaller samples. After reviewing current practices in the field, and the assumptions of repeated-measures ANOVA, we provide an introduction to MLM. We review its assumptions, uses, advantages and disadvantages. Using real and simulated data, we illustrate how MLM may improve the ability to detect effects of treatment over ANOVA, particularly with the small samples typical of neglect research. Furthermore, our simulation analyses result in recommendations for the design of future rehabilitation studies. Because between-subject heterogeneity is one important reason why studies of neglect treatments often yield conflicting results, employing statistical procedures that model this heterogeneity more accurately will increase the efficiency of our efforts to find treatments to improve the lives of individuals with neglect.

  2. Evaluating Ireland's IBIA as an approach to improving the quality and effectiveness of biodiversity impact assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González, Ainhoa; Hochstrasser, Tamara; Fry, John; Scott, Paul; Grist, Berna; Jones, Mike

    2013-12-15

    The assessment of potential impacts of plans, programmes and projects on biodiversity is required under various legislative remits (including the European Union's Habitats, Strategic Environmental Assessment and Environmental Impact Assessment Directives). The objective of such assessments is to ensure that potential negative impacts on both protected nature conservation sites and species and wider biodiversity are efficiently identified in a timely manner, quantified and subsequently avoided or mitigated, while enhancing positive effects. The procedural requirements of these legal obligations vary and, as a result, differing methodological steps, data gathering and analysis methods, and impact assessment techniques are commonly applied under each individual process, often leading to uncoordinated assessment efforts and results (in terms, for example, of scope, scale and assessment detail). In order to address these issues and improve current practice, an Integrated Biodiversity Impact Assessment (IBIA) methodology has been developed in Ireland with the overall aim of providing a holistic and systematic approach to biodiversity impact assessment. The IBIA framework seeks to ensure that relevant procedures are effectively integrated, time and resource efficiencies are optimised, and unnecessary duplication avoided. Particular emphasis is given to compliance with legal requirements, integration and communication of scientific knowledge, spatial assessment and biodiversity data considerations, and integration of biodiversity aspects with a variety of other concerns during the plan-making process. This paper presents the IBIA methodology and critically examines current key issues in biodiversity impact assessment that can be potentially addressed through IBIA, as well as remaining challenges. In addition, and in order to support the examination of the anticipated benefits of using this new methodological framework (such as biodiversity-inclusive planning through

  3. A team approach to improving colorectal cancer services using administrative health data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Porter Geoffrey

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Colorectal cancer (CRC is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer in Canada and accounts for 11.9% of all cancer-related mortality. Fortunately, previous studies have provided evidence of improved outcomes from access to timely and appropriate health services along the disease trajectory in CRC. As a result, the CIHR/CCNS Team in Access to Colorectal Cancer Services in Nova Scotia (Team ACCESS was created to build colorectal cancer (CRC research capacity in Nova Scotia (NS and to study access to and quality of CRC services along the entire continuum of cancer care. Objectives The objectives of this paper are to: 1 provide a detailed description of the methodologies employed across the various studies being conducted by Team ACCESS; 2 demonstrate how administrative health data can be used to evaluate access and quality in CRC services; and 3 provide an example of an interdisciplinary team approach to addressing health service delivery issues. Methods All patients diagnosed with CRC in NS between 2001 and 2005 were identified through the Nova Scotia Cancer Registry (NSCR and staged using the Collaborative Stage Data Collection System. Using administrative databases that were linked at the patient level, Team ACCESS created a retrospective longitudinal cohort with comprehensive demographic, clinical, and healthcare utilization data. These data were used to examine access to and quality of CRC services in NS, as well as factors affecting access to and quality of care, at various transition points along the continuum of care. Team ACCESS has also implemented integrated knowledge translation strategies targeting policy- and decision- makers. Discussion The development of Team ACCESS represents a unique approach to CRC research. We anticipate that the skills, tools, and knowledge generated from our work will also advance the study of other cancer disease sites in NS. Given the increasing prevalence of cancer, and with national and

  4. Approaches to studying and manipulating the enteric microbiome to improve autism symptoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard E. Frye

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available There is a growing body of scientific evidence that the health of the microbiome (the trillions of microbes that inhabit the human host plays an important role in maintaining the health of the host and that disruptions in the microbiome may play a role in certain disease processes. An increasing number of research studies have provided evidence that the composition of the gut (enteric microbiome (GM in at least a subset of individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD deviates from what is usually observed in typically developing individuals. There are several lines of research that suggest that specific changes in the GM could be causative or highly associated with driving core and associated ASD symptoms, pathology, and comorbidities which include gastrointestinal symptoms, although it is also a possibility that these changes, in whole or in part, could be a consequence of underlying pathophysiological features associated with ASD. However, if the GM truly plays a causative role in ASD, then the manipulation of the GM could potentially be leveraged as a therapeutic approach to improve ASD symptoms and/or comorbidities, including gastrointestinal symptoms. One approach to investigating this possibility in greater detail includes a highly controlled clinical trial in which the GM is systematically manipulated to determine its significance in individuals with ASD. To outline the important issues that would be required to design such a study, a group of clinicians, research scientists, and parents of children with ASD participated in an interdisciplinary daylong workshop as an extension of the 1st International Symposium on the Microbiome in Health and Disease with a Special Focus on Autism (www.microbiome-autism.com. The group considered several aspects of designing clinical studies, including clinical trial design, treatments that could potentially be used in a clinical trial, appropriate ASD participants for the clinical trial, behavioral and

  5. Comparison of Modeling and Experimental Approaches for Improved Modeling of Filtration in Granular and Consolidated Media

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mirabolghasemi, M.; Prodanovic, M.; DiCarlo, D. A.

    2014-12-01

    Filtration is relevant to many disciplines from colloid transport in environmental engineering to formation damage in petroleum engineering. In this study we compare the results of the novel numerical modeling of filtration phenomenon on pore scale with the complementary experimental observations on laboratory scale and discuss how the results of comparison can be used to improve macroscale filtration models for different porous media. The water suspension contained glass beads of 200 micron diameter and flows through a packing of 1mm diameter glass beads, and thus the main filtration mechanism is straining and jamming of particles. The numerical model simulates the flow of suspension through a realistic 3D structure of an imaged, disordered sphere pack, which acts as the filter medium. Particle capture through size exclusion and jamming is modeled via a coupled Discrete Element Method (DEM) and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) approach. The coupled CFD-DEM approach is capable of modeling the majority of particle-particle, particle-wall, and particle-fluid interactions. Note that most of traditional approaches require spherical particles both in suspension and the filtration medium. We adapted the interface between the pore space and the spherical grains to be represented as a triangulated surface and this allows extensions to any imaged media. The numerical and experimental results show that the filtration coefficient of the sphere pack is a function of the flow rate and concentration of the suspension, even for constant total particle flow rate. An increase in the suspension flow rate results in a decrease in the filtration coefficient, which suggests that the hydrodynamic drag force plays the key role in hindering the particle capture in random sphere packs. Further, similar simulations of suspension flow through a sandstone sample, which has a tighter pore space, show that filtration coefficient remains almost constant at different suspension flow rates. This

  6. The Limitations of Existing Approaches in Improving MicroRNA Target Prediction Accuracy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loganantharaj, Rasiah; Randall, Thomas A

    2017-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small (18-24 nt) endogenous RNAs found across diverse phyla involved in posttranscriptional regulation, primarily downregulation of mRNAs. Experimentally determining miRNA-mRNA interactions can be expensive and time-consuming, making the accurate computational prediction of miRNA targets a high priority. Since miRNA-mRNA base pairing in mammals is not perfectly complementary and only a fraction of the identified motifs are real binding sites, accurately predicting miRNA targets remains challenging. The limitations and bottlenecks of existing algorithms and approaches are discussed in this chapter.A new miRNA-mRNA interaction algorithm was implemented in Python (TargetFind) to capture three different modes of association and to maximize detection sensitivity to around 95% for mouse (mm9) and human (hg19) reference data. For human (hg19) data, the prediction accuracy with any one feature among evolutionarily conserved score, multiple targets in a UTR or changes in free energy varied within a close range from 63.5% to 66%. When the results of these features are combined with majority voting, the expected prediction accuracy increases to 69.5%. When all three features are used together, the average best prediction accuracy with tenfold cross validation from the classifiers naïve Bayes, support vector machine, artificial neural network, and decision tree were, respectively, 66.5%, 67.1%, 69%, and 68.4%. The results reveal the advantages and limitations of these approaches.When comparing different sets of features on their strength in predicting true hg19 targets, evolutionarily conserved score slightly outperformed all other features based on thermostability, and target multiplicity. The sophisticated supervised learning algorithms did not improve the prediction accuracy significantly compared to a simple threshold based approach on conservation score or combining the results of each feature with majority agreements. The targets from randomly

  7. HANDBOOK OF SOCCER MATCH ANALYSIS: A SYSTEMATIC APPROACH TO IMPROVING PERFORMANCE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher Carling

    2006-03-01

    Analysis Tells Us about Successful Strategy and Tactics in Soccer, 8. From Technical and Tactical Performance Analysis to Training Drills, 9. The Future of Soccer Match Analysis. ASSESSMENT The authors have assembled an essential reading for all who are interested in understanding and doing better coaching and improving the performance in soccer. To this purpose, there is a strong practical approach in the book by giving plenty of examples along with a satisfactory scientific analysis of the subject area. It is concise and well organized in its presentation, creating an effective textbook. I believe, therefore, the book will serve as a first-rate teaching tool and reference for coaches, athletes and professionals in the human performance sciences.

  8. Boundary Variation Diminishing (BVD) reconstruction: A new approach to improve Godunov schemes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Ziyao; Inaba, Satoshi; Xiao, Feng

    2016-10-01

    This paper presents a new approach, so-called boundary variation diminishing (BVD), for reconstructions that minimize the discontinuities (jumps) at cell interfaces in Godunov type schemes. It is motivated by the observation that diminishing the jump at the cell boundary can effectively reduce the dissipation in numerical flux. Differently from the existing practices which seek high-order polynomials within mesh cells while assuming discontinuities being always at the cell interfaces, the BVD strategy presented in this paper switches between a high-order polynomial and a jump-like reconstruction that allows a discontinuity being partly represented within the mesh cell rather than at the interface. Excellent numerical results have been obtained for both scalar and Euler conservation laws with substantially improved solution quality in comparison with the existing methods. It is shown that new schemes of high fidelity for both continuous and discontinuous solutions can be devised by the BVD guideline with properly-chosen candidate reconstruction schemes. This work provides a simple and accurate alternative of great practical significance to the current high-order Godunov paradigm which overly pursues the smoothness within mesh cells under the questionable premiss that discontinuities only appear at cell interfaces.

  9. An Improved Statistical Solution for Global Seismicity by the HIST-ETAS Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chu, A.; Ogata, Y.; Katsura, K.

    2010-12-01

    For long-term global seismic model fitting, recent work by Chu et al. (2010) applied the spatial-temporal ETAS model (Ogata 1998) and analyzed global data partitioned into tectonic zones based on geophysical characteristics (Bird 2003), and it has shown tremendous improvements of model fitting compared with one overall global model. While the ordinary ETAS model assumes constant parameter values across the complete region analyzed, the hierarchical space-time ETAS model (HIST-ETAS, Ogata 2004) is a newly introduced approach by proposing regional distinctions of the parameters for more accurate seismic prediction. As the HIST-ETAS model has been fit to regional data of Japan (Ogata 2010), our work applies the model to describe global seismicity. Employing the Akaike's Bayesian Information Criterion (ABIC) as an assessment method, we compare the MLE results with zone divisions considered to results obtained by an overall global model. Location dependent parameters of the model and Gutenberg-Richter b-values are optimized, and seismological interpretations are discussed.

  10. A hospital-centered approach to improve emergency obstetric care in South Sudan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groppi, Lavinia; Somigliana, Edgardo; Pisani, Vincenzo; Ika, Michelina; Mabor, Joseph L; Akec, Henry N; Nhial, John A; Mading, Michel S; Scanagatta, Chiara; Manenti, Fabio; Putoto, Giovanni

    2015-01-01

    To assess provision of emergency obstetric care (EmOC) in Greater Yirol, South Sudan, after implementation of a hospital-centered intervention with an ambulance referral system. In a descriptive study, data were prospectively recorded for all women referred to Yirol County Hospital for delivery in 2012. An ambulance referral system had been implemented in October 2011. Access to the hospital and ambulance use were free of charge. The number of deliveries at Yirol County Hospital increased in 2012 to 1089, corresponding to 13.3% of the 8213 deliveries expected to have occurred in the catchment area. Cesareans were performed for 53 (4.9%) deliveries, corresponding to 0.6% of the expected number of deliveries in the catchment area. Among 950 women who delivered a newborn weighing at least 2500 g at the hospital, 6 (0.6%) intrapartum or very early neonatal deaths occurred. Of 1232 women expected to have major obstetric complications in 2012 in the catchment area, 472 (38.3%) received EmOC at the hospital. Of 115 expected absolute obstetric indications, 114 (99.1%) were treated in the hospital. A hospital-centered approach with an ambulance referral system effectively improves the availability of EmOC in underprivileged remote settings. Copyright © 2014 International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Improving Metallic Thermal Protection System Hypervelocity Impact Resistance Through Design of Experiments Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poteet, Carl C.; Blosser, Max L.

    2001-01-01

    A design of experiments approach has been implemented using computational hypervelocity impact simulations to determine the most effective place to add mass to an existing metallic Thermal Protection System (TPS) to improve hypervelocity impact protection. Simulations were performed using axisymmetric models in CTH, a shock-physics code developed by Sandia National Laboratories, and validated by comparison with existing test data. The axisymmetric models were then used in a statistical sensitivity analysis to determine the influence of five design parameters on degree of hypervelocity particle dispersion. Several damage metrics were identified and evaluated. Damage metrics related to the extent of substructure damage were seen to produce misleading results, however damage metrics related to the degree of dispersion of the hypervelocity particle produced results that corresponded to physical intuition. Based on analysis of variance results it was concluded that the most effective way to increase hypervelocity impact resistance is to increase the thickness of the outer foil layer. Increasing the spacing between the outer surface and the substructure is also very effective at increasing dispersion.

  12. Improved Flexible Transparent Conductive Electrodes based on Silver Nanowire Networks by a Simple Sunlight Illumination Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kou, Pengfei; Yang, Liu; Chang, Cheng; He, Sailing

    2017-01-01

    Silver nanowire (Ag NW) networks have attracted wide attention as transparent electrodes for emerging flexible optoelectronics. However, the sheet resistance is greatly limited by large wire-to-wire contact resistances. Here, we propose a simple sunlight illumination approach to remarkably improve their electrical conductivity without any significant degradation of the light transmittance. Because the power density is extremely low (0.1 W/cm2, 1-Sun), only slight welding between Ag NWs has been observed. Despite this, a sheet resistance of <20 Ω/sq and transmittance of ~87% at wavelength of 550 nm as well as excellent mechanical flexibility have still been achieved for Ag NW networks after sunlight illumination for 1 hour or longer, which are significant upgrades over those of ITO. Slight plasmonic welding together with the associated self-limiting effect has been investigated by numerical simulations and further verified experimentally through varied solar concentrations. Due to the reduced resistance, high-performance transparent film heaters as well as efficient defrosters have been demonstrated, which are superior to the previously-reported Ag NW based film heaters. Since the sunlight is environmentally friendly and easily available, sophisticated or expensive facilities are not necessary. Our findings are particularly meaningful and show enormous potential for outdoor applications. PMID:28169343

  13. Synthetic biology approaches to improve biocatalyst identification in metagenomic library screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guazzaroni, María-Eugenia; Silva-Rocha, Rafael; Ward, Richard John

    2015-01-01

    There is a growing demand for enzymes with improved catalytic performance or tolerance to process-specific parameters, and biotechnology plays a crucial role in the development of biocatalysts for use in industry, agriculture, medicine and energy generation. Metagenomics takes advantage of the wealth of genetic and biochemical diversity present in the genomes of microorganisms found in environmental samples, and provides a set of new technologies directed towards screening for new catalytic activities from environmental samples with potential biotechnology applications. However, biased and low level of expression of heterologous proteins in Escherichia coli together with the use of non-optimal cloning vectors for the construction of metagenomic libraries generally results in an extremely low success rate for enzyme identification. The bottleneck arising from inefficient screening of enzymatic activities has been addressed from several perspectives; however, the limitations related to biased expression in heterologous hosts cannot be overcome by using a single approach, but rather requires the synergetic implementation of multiple methodologies. Here, we review some of the principal constraints regarding the discovery of new enzymes in metagenomic libraries and discuss how these might be resolved by using synthetic biology methods.

  14. Training Inference Making Skills Using a Situation Model Approach Improves Reading Comprehension

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    Lisanne eBos

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to enhance third and fourth graders’ text comprehension at the situation model level. Therefore, we tested a reading strategy training developed to target inference making skills, which are widely considered to be pivotal to situation model construction. The training was grounded in contemporary literature on situation model-based inference making and addressed the source (text-based versus knowledge-based, type (necessary versus unnecessary for (re-establishing coherence, and depth of an inference (making single lexical inferences versus combining multiple lexical inferences, as well as the type of searching strategy (forward versus backward. Results indicated that, compared to a control group (n = 51, children who followed the experimental training (n = 67 improved their inference making skills supportive to situation model construction. Importantly, our training also resulted in increased levels of general reading comprehension and motivation. In sum, this study showed that a ‘level of text representation’-approach can provide a useful framework to teach inference making skills to third and fourth graders.

  15. A Suggested Approach to Simplify and Improve Cervical Screening in the United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schiffman, Mark; Wentzensen, Nicolas

    2016-01-01

    Cervical cancer prevention strategies in the United States have become complicated and even controversial, despite advanced understanding of carcinogenic human papillomavirus (HPV) infection as the necessary causal agent. Twenty years ago, etiologic and methodologic studies had already yielded 2 powerful preventive approaches. There are excellent vaccines to prevent the most carcinogenic types of HPV infection; reduced HPV endemicity will ultimately prevent a large fraction of cervical precancer and cancers. For prevention of cervical cancer in the interim, sensitive HPV tests that target women at risk of cancer, by detection of the DNA/RNA of approximately a dozen carcinogenic HPV types, permit early diagnosis and treatment of precancers.Although HPV vaccines and tests have continued to improve, implementation of these new HPV-based prevention methods has been relatively slow in the United States and in most places worldwide. Increasing vaccination rates is the clearest and most vital long-term priority. But, for decades to come, screening will also be important. To promote useful discussion, this commentary will raise some current critical issues in simplifying and speeding the rational introduction of HPV molecular methods into US cervical screening.

  16. Training Inference Making Skills Using a Situation Model Approach Improves Reading Comprehension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bos, Lisanne T; De Koning, Bjorn B; Wassenburg, Stephanie I; van der Schoot, Menno

    2016-01-01

    This study aimed to enhance third and fourth graders' text comprehension at the situation model level. Therefore, we tested a reading strategy training developed to target inference making skills, which are widely considered to be pivotal to situation model construction. The training was grounded in contemporary literature on situation model-based inference making and addressed the source (text-based versus knowledge-based), type (necessary versus unnecessary for (re-)establishing coherence), and depth of an inference (making single lexical inferences versus combining multiple lexical inferences), as well as the type of searching strategy (forward versus backward). Results indicated that, compared to a control group (n = 51), children who followed the experimental training (n = 67) improved their inference making skills supportive to situation model construction. Importantly, our training also resulted in increased levels of general reading comprehension and motivation. In sum, this study showed that a 'level of text representation'-approach can provide a useful framework to teach inference making skills to third and fourth graders.

  17. An Improved Approach for Estimating Daily Net Radiation over the Heihe River Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Bingfang; Liu, Shufu; Zhu, Weiwei; Yan, Nana; Xing, Qiang; Tan, Shen

    2017-01-01

    Net radiation plays an essential role in determining the thermal conditions of the Earth’s surface and is an important parameter for the study of land-surface processes and global climate change. In this paper, an improved satellite-based approach to estimate the daily net radiation is presented, in which sunshine duration were derived from the geostationary meteorological satellite (FY-2D) cloud classification product, the monthly empirical as and bs Angstrom coefficients for net shortwave radiation were calibrated by spatial fitting of the ground data from 1997 to 2006, and the daily net longwave radiation was calibrated with ground data from 2007 to 2010 over the Heihe River Basin in China. The estimated daily net radiation values were validated against ground data for 12 months in 2008 at four stations with different underlying surface types. The average coefficient of determination (R2) was 0.8489, and the averaged Nash-Sutcliffe equation (NSE) was 0.8356. The close agreement between the estimated daily net radiation and observations indicates that the proposed method is promising, especially given the comparison between the spatial distribution and the interpolation of sunshine duration. Potential applications include climate research, energy balance studies and the estimation of global evapotranspiration. PMID:28054976

  18. Error-corrected AFM: a simple and broadly applicable approach for substantially improving AFM image accuracy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bosse, James L; Huey, Bryan D

    2014-04-18

    Atomic force microscopy (AFM) has become an indispensable tool for imaging the topography and properties of surfaces at the nanoscale. A ubiquitous problem, however, is that optimal accuracy demands smooth surfaces, slow scanning, and expert users, contrary to many AFM applications and practical use patterns. Accordingly, a simple correction to AFM topographic images is implemented, incorporating error signals such as deflection and/or amplitude data that have long been available but quantitatively underexploited. This is demonstrated to substantially improve both height and lateral accuracy for expert users, with a corresponding 3-5 fold decrease in image error. Common image artifacts due to inexperienced AFM use, generally poorly scanned surfaces, or high speed images acquired in as fast as 7 s, are also shown to be effectively rectified, returning results equivalent to standard 'expert-user' images. This concept is proven for contact mode AFM, AC-mode, and high speed imaging, as well as property mapping such as phase contrast, with obvious extensions to many specialized AFM variations as well. Conveniently, as this correction procedure is based on either real time or post-processing, it is easily employed for future as well as legacy AFM systems and data. Such error-corrected AFM therefore offers a simple, broadly applicable approach for more accurate, more efficient, and more user-friendly implementation of AFM for nanoscale topography and property mapping.

  19. A socially situated approach to inform ways to improve health and wellbeing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horrocks, Christine; Johnson, Sally

    2014-02-01

    Mainstream health psychology supports neoliberal notions of health promotion in which self-management is central. The emphasis is on models that explain behaviour as individually driven and cognitively motivated, with health beliefs framed as the favoured mechanisms to target in order to bring about change to improve health. Utilising understandings exemplified in critical health psychology, we take a more socially situated approach, focusing on practicing health, the rhetoric of modernisation in UK health care and moves toward democratisation. While recognising that within these new ways of working there are opportunities for empowerment and user-led health care, there are other implications. How these changes link to simplistic cognitive behavioural ideologies of health promotion and rational decision-making is explored. Utilising two different empirical studies, this article highlights how self-management and expected compliance with governmental authority in relation to health practices position not only communities that experience multiple disadvantage but also more seemingly privileged social actors. The article presents a challenge to self-management and informed choice, in which the importance of navigational networks is evident. Because health care can become remote and inaccessible to certain sections of the community, yet pervasive and deterministic for others, we need multiple levels of analysis and different forms of action. © 2014 The Authors. Sociology of Health & Illness © 2014 Foundation for the Sociology of Health & Illness/John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. An improved approach to the efficient construction of and search operations in motion graphs

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    GAO Yan; CHEN ZhiHua; CHEN MinGang; SHEN Yang

    2012-01-01

    Motion graphs have been widely used as an effective technique in the synthesis of human motions.To synthesize well-formed motions,motion graphs require smooth transitions and good connectivity.However,the time and costs grow quadratically as the graph size increases.In this paper,we present a method to set up a hierarchical structure,called a structure table.The coarse level of this graph models different motion categories and their transitions,and the fine level mainly captures different motion styles.An interpolation space method is used to improve the graph connectivity at the fine level.This structure guides the establishment of a faster and more realistic graphical object.After the building process,this structure also helps with searching the motion graph,by performing a traverse search and placing the findings into a direct look-up table or local search depository.Moreover,when there is no direct link between the different motions,a navigation map is introduced to conduct an appropriate search path via a series of transition motion clips.The experimental results indicate that our approach could lower the computation time in construction and searching,while simultaneously providing a richer variety of motion styles.

  1. A Game-Theoretical Approach for Spectrum Efficiency Improvement in Cloud-RAN

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhuofu Zhou

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available As tremendous mobile devices access to the Internet in the future, the cells which can provide high data rate and more capacity are expected to be deployed. Specifically, in the next generation of mobile communication 5G, cloud computing is supposed to be applied to radio access network. In cloud radio access network (Cloud-RAN, the traditional base station is divided into two parts, that is, remote radio heads (RRHs and base band units (BBUs. RRHs are geographically distributed and densely deployed, so as to achieve high data rate and low latency. However, the ultradense deployment inevitably deteriorates spectrum efficiency due to the severer intercell interference among RRHs. In this paper, the downlink spectrum efficiency can be improved through the cooperative transmission based on forming the coalitions of RRHs. We formulate the problem as a coalition formation game in partition form. In the process of coalition formation, each RRH can join or leave one coalition to maximize its own individual utility while taking into account the coalition utility at the same time. Moreover, the convergence and stability of the resulting coalition structure are studied. The numeric simulation result demonstrates that the proposed approach based on coalition formation game is superior to the noncooperative method in terms of the aggregate coalition utility.

  2. Toward Finding an Approach for Improving Rhetorical Organization of EFL Learners’ Argumentative Writing

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Miri, Toktam

    2014-01-01

    This study aimed at examining the probable impact of three distinct approaches to teaching writing, namely Process, Process-product and Product approaches on the rhetorical organization of EFL learners...

  3. Improving predictive power of physically based rainfall-induced shallow landslide models: a probabilistic approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Raia

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Distributed models to forecast the spatial and temporal occurrence of rainfall-induced shallow landslides are based on deterministic laws. These models extend spatially the static stability models adopted in geotechnical engineering, and adopt an infinite-slope geometry to balance the resisting and the driving forces acting on the sliding mass. An infiltration model is used to determine how rainfall changes pore-water conditions, modulating the local stability/instability conditions. A problem with the operation of the existing models lays in the difficulty in obtaining accurate values for the several variables that describe the material properties of the slopes. The problem is particularly severe when the models are applied over large areas, for which sufficient information on the geotechnical and hydrological conditions of the slopes is not generally available. To help solve the problem, we propose a probabilistic Monte Carlo approach to the distributed modeling of rainfall-induced shallow landslides. For this purpose, we have modified the transient rainfall infiltration and grid-based regional slope-stability analysis (TRIGRS code. The new code (TRIGRS-P adopts a probabilistic approach to compute, on a cell-by-cell basis, transient pore-pressure changes and related changes in the factor of safety due to rainfall infiltration. Infiltration is modeled using analytical solutions of partial differential equations describing one-dimensional vertical flow in isotropic, homogeneous materials. Both saturated and unsaturated soil conditions can be considered. TRIGRS-P copes with the natural variability inherent to the mechanical and hydrological properties of the slope materials by allowing values of the TRIGRS model input parameters to be sampled randomly from a given probability distribution. The range of variation and the mean value of the parameters can be determined by the usual methods used for preparing the TRIGRS input parameters. The outputs

  4. Improving predictive power of physically based rainfall-induced shallow landslide models: a probabilistic approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Raia

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Distributed models to forecast the spatial and temporal occurrence of rainfall-induced shallow landslides are deterministic. These models extend spatially the static stability models adopted in geotechnical engineering and adopt an infinite-slope geometry to balance the resisting and the driving forces acting on the sliding mass. An infiltration model is used to determine how rainfall changes pore-water conditions, modulating the local stability/instability conditions. A problem with the existing models is the difficulty in obtaining accurate values for the several variables that describe the material properties of the slopes. The problem is particularly severe when the models are applied over large areas, for which sufficient information on the geotechnical and hydrological conditions of the slopes is not generally available. To help solve the problem, we propose a probabilistic Monte Carlo approach to the distributed modeling of shallow rainfall-induced landslides. For the purpose, we have modified the Transient Rainfall Infiltration and Grid-Based Regional Slope-Stability Analysis (TRIGRS code. The new code (TRIGRS-P adopts a stochastic approach to compute, on a cell-by-cell basis, transient pore-pressure changes and related changes in the factor of safety due to rainfall infiltration. Infiltration is modeled using analytical solutions of partial differential equations describing one-dimensional vertical flow in isotropic, homogeneous materials. Both saturated and unsaturated soil conditions can be considered. TRIGRS-P copes with the natural variability inherent to the mechanical and hydrological properties of the slope materials by allowing values of the TRIGRS model input parameters to be sampled randomly from a given probability distribution. The range of variation and the mean value of the parameters can be determined by the usual methods used for preparing the TRIGRS input parameters. The outputs of several model runs obtained varying

  5. Improving predictive power of physically based rainfall-induced shallow landslide models: a probablistic approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raia, S.; Alvioli, M.; Rossi, M.; Baum, R.L.; Godt, J.W.; Guzzetti, F.

    2013-01-01

    Distributed models to forecast the spatial and temporal occurrence of rainfall-induced shallow landslides are deterministic. These models extend spatially the static stability models adopted in geotechnical engineering and adopt an infinite-slope geometry to balance the resisting and the driving forces acting on the sliding mass. An infiltration model is used to determine how rainfall changes pore-water conditions, modulating the local stability/instability conditions. A problem with the existing models is the difficulty in obtaining accurate values for the several variables that describe the material properties of the slopes. The problem is particularly severe when the models are applied over large areas, for which sufficient information on the geotechnical and hydrological conditions of the slopes is not generally available. To help solve the problem, we propose a probabilistic Monte Carlo approach to the distributed modeling of shallow rainfall-induced landslides. For the purpose, we have modified the Transient Rainfall Infiltration and Grid-Based Regional Slope-Stability Analysis (TRIGRS) code. The new code (TRIGRS-P) adopts a stochastic approach to compute, on a cell-by-cell basis, transient pore-pressure changes and related changes in the factor of safety due to rainfall infiltration. Infiltration is modeled using analytical solutions of partial differential equations describing one-dimensional vertical flow in isotropic, homogeneous materials. Both saturated and unsaturated soil conditions can be considered. TRIGRS-P copes with the natural variability inherent to the mechanical and hydrological properties of the slope materials by allowing values of the TRIGRS model input parameters to be sampled randomly from a given probability distribution. The range of variation and the mean value of the parameters can be determined by the usual methods used for preparing the TRIGRS input parameters. The outputs of several model runs obtained varying the input parameters

  6. Dynamics Control Approaches to Improve Vibratory Environment of the Helicopter Aircrew

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wickramasinghe, Viresh Kanchana

    Although helicopter has become a versatile mode of aerial transportation, high vibration levels leads to poor ride quality for its passengers and aircrew. Undesired vibration transmitted through the helicopter seats have been known to cause fatigue and discomfort to the aircrew in the short-term as well as neck strain and back pain injuries due to long-term exposure. This research study investigated the use of novel active as well as passive methodologies integrated in helicopter seats to mitigate the aircrew exposure to high vibration levels. Due to significantly less certification effort required to modify the helicopter seat structure, application of novel technologies to the seat is more practical compared to flight critical components such as the main rotor to reduce aircrew vibration. In particular, this research effort developed a novel adaptive seat mount approach based on active vibration control technology. This novel design that incorporated two stacked piezoelectric actuators as active struts increases the bending stiffness to avoid the low frequency resonance while generating forces to counteract higher harmonic vibration peaks. A real-time controller implemented using a feed-forward algorithm based on adaptive notches counteracted the forced vibration peaks while a robust feedback control algorithm suppressed the resonance modes. The effectiveness of the adaptive seat mount system was demonstrated through extensive closed-loop control tests on a full-scale helicopter seat using representative helicopter floor vibration profiles. Test results concluded that the proposed adaptive seat mount approach based on active control technology is a viable solution for the helicopter seat vibration control application. In addition, a unique flight test using a Bell-412 helicopter demonstrated that the aircrew is exposed to high levels of vibration during flight and that the whole body vibration spectrum varied substantially depending on operating conditions as

  7. GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION SYSTEM APPROACH FOR PLAY PORTFOLIOS TO IMPROVE OIL PRODUCTION IN THE ILLINOIS BASIN

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Beverly Seyler; John Grube

    2004-12-10

    Oil and gas have been commercially produced in Illinois for over 100 years. Existing commercial production is from more than fifty-two named pay horizons in Paleozoic rocks ranging in age from Middle Ordovician to Pennsylvanian. Over 3.2 billion barrels of oil have been produced. Recent calculations indicate that remaining mobile resources in the Illinois Basin may be on the order of several billion barrels. Thus, large quantities of oil, potentially recoverable using current technology, remain in Illinois oil fields despite a century of development. Many opportunities for increased production may have been missed due to complex development histories, multiple stacked pays, and commingled production which makes thorough exploitation of pays and the application of secondary or improved/enhanced recovery strategies difficult. Access to data, and the techniques required to evaluate and manage large amounts of diverse data are major barriers to increased production of critical reserves in the Illinois Basin. These constraints are being alleviated by the development of a database access system using a Geographic Information System (GIS) approach for evaluation and identification of underdeveloped pays. The Illinois State Geological Survey has developed a methodology that is being used by industry to identify underdeveloped areas (UDAs) in and around petroleum reservoirs in Illinois using a GIS approach. This project utilizes a statewide oil and gas Oracle{reg_sign} database to develop a series of Oil and Gas Base Maps with well location symbols that are color-coded by producing horizon. Producing horizons are displayed as layers and can be selected as separate or combined layers that can be turned on and off. Map views can be customized to serve individual needs and page size maps can be printed. A core analysis database with over 168,000 entries has been compiled and assimilated into the ISGS Enterprise Oracle database. Maps of wells with core data have been generated

  8. Improvement of the indoor air quality. An integral approach; Verbetering van de luchtkwaliteit. Een integrale benadering

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bluyssen, Ph. M. [TNO Bouw en Ondergrond, Delft (Netherlands)

    2009-10-15

    There seems to be a discrepancy between current Indoor Air Quality standards and end-users wishes and demands. Indoor air quality can be approached from three points of view: (1) the human, (2) the indoor air of the space and (3) the sources contributing to indoor air pollution. Standards currently in use mainly address the indoor air of the space. Other or additional recommendations and guidelines are required to improve indoor air quality. Even though we do not fully understand the mechanisms behind the physical, chemical, physiological and psychological processes, it is still possible to identify the different ways to be taken: regulatory, political and social (awareness), technical (process and product) and scientific. Besides the fact that there is an urgent need to involve medicine and neuropsychology in research to investigate the mechanisms behind dose-response, health effects and interactions between and with the other factors and parameters of the indoor environment and the human body and mind, a holistic approach is required including the sources, the air and last but not least the human beings (occupants) themselves. This paper mainly focuses on the European situation. [Dutch] Er lijkt een discrepantie te bestaan tussen de huidige richtlijnen voor binnenluchtkwaliteit en de wensen en eisen van eindgebruikers. Binnenluchtkwaliteit kan op drie manieren worden benaderd: vanuit de mens, de binnenlucht in de ruimte en vanuit de bronnen die aan de binnenluchtverontreiniging bijdragen. Huidige richtlijnen adresseren vooral de binnenlucht in een ruimte. Andere of extra aanbevelingen en richtlijnen zijn nodig om de binnenluchtkwaliteit te verbeteren. Ondanks dat we de mechanismen achter de fysieke, chemische, fysiologische en psychologische processen niet volledig begrijpen, is het toch mogelijk, om de verschillende wegen (regelgeving, politiek-sociale (besef/bewustzijn), technisch (proces en product) en wetenschappelijk), die bewandeld kunnen worden uit te

  9. Managing boundaries in primary care service improvement: A developmental approach to communities of practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    , competition and strong organisational identification. Manipulated emergence of multi-organisational CoPs in the context of primary care may thus be problematic. Conclusions In cases when manipulated emergence of new CoPs is problematic, boundary issues could be addressed by adopting a developmental perspective on CoPs, which provides an alternative to the analytical and instrumental perspectives previously described in the CoP literature. This perspective implies a pragmatic, situational approach to mapping existing CoPs and their characteristics and potentially modifying them in the process of service improvement through the combination of internal and external facilitation. PMID:23068016

  10. Managing boundaries in primary care service improvement: A developmental approach to communities of practice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kislov Roman

    2012-10-01

    due to historical factors, competition and strong organisational identification. Manipulated emergence of multi-organisational CoPs in the context of primary care may thus be problematic. Conclusions In cases when manipulated emergence of new CoPs is problematic, boundary issues could be addressed by adopting a developmental perspective on CoPs, which provides an alternative to the analytical and instrumental perspectives previously described in the CoP literature. This perspective implies a pragmatic, situational approach to mapping existing CoPs and their characteristics and potentially modifying them in the process of service improvement through the combination of internal and external facilitation.

  11. Managing boundaries in primary care service improvement: a developmental approach to communities of practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kislov, Roman; Walshe, Kieran; Harvey, Gill

    2012-10-15

    organisational identification. Manipulated emergence of multi-organisational CoPs in the context of primary care may thus be problematic. In cases when manipulated emergence of new CoPs is problematic, boundary issues could be addressed by adopting a developmental perspective on CoPs, which provides an alternative to the analytical and instrumental perspectives previously described in the CoP literature. This perspective implies a pragmatic, situational approach to mapping existing CoPs and their characteristics and potentially modifying them in the process of service improvement through the combination of internal and external facilitation.

  12. Soil ecology and agricultural technology; An integrated approach towards improved soil management for sustainable farming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pulleman, Mirjam; Pérès, Guénola; Crittenden, Stephen; Heddadj, Djilali; Sukkel, Wijnand

    2014-05-01

    Intensive arable food production systems are in need of smart solutions that combine ecological knowledge and farm technology to maximize yields while protecting natural resources. The huge diversity of soil organisms and their interactions is of crucial importance for soil functions and ecosystem services, such as organic matter incorporation and break down, nutrient mineralization, soil structure formation, water regulation and disease and pest control. Soil management decisions that take into account the soil biodiversity and associated functions are thus essential to (i) maintain soil productivity in the long term, (ii) reduce the dependency on external inputs and non-renewables such as fossil fuels, and (iii) make agroecosystems more resilient against biotic and abiotic stresses. Organic farming systems and reduced tillage systems are two approaches that aim to increase soil biodiversity and general soil quality, through improved management of organic matter but differ in their emphasis on the use of chemical inputs for crop protection or soil disturbance, respectively. In North-western Europe experience with and knowledge of reduced tillage systems is still scarce, both in conventional and organic farming. Our study targeted both conventional and organic farming and aimed at 1) documenting reduced tillage practices within different agroecological contexts in NW Europe; 2) evaluating the effects of reduced tillage systems on soil biodiversity and soil ecosystem services; 3) increase understanding of agroecological factors that determine trade-offs between different ecosystem services. Earthworm species and nematode taxa were selected as indicator organisms to be studied for their known response to soil management and effects on soil functions. Additionally, soil organic matter, physical soil parameters and processes, and crop yields have been measured across multiple sites. Data have been collected over several cropping seasons in long term field experiments

  13. 基于计算机虚拟仿真技术辅助数控教学的缺陷分析%An Analysis of the Deficiencies of Virtual Simulation Technology-Aided Numerical Control Teaching

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    祁晗

    2012-01-01

    本文以教育心理学相关概念为框架对基于计算机虚拟仿真技术辅助数控教学的固有缺陷进行了分析,指出了其作为教学辅助工具存在的问题,并提出关于对数控教学方式改革的反思。%According to educational psychology concepts as the framework,this paper analyzes the inherent defect of virtual simulation technology-aided numerical control teaching,points out its existing problems as a teaching tool,and presents on CNC teaching reform reflection.

  14. A training approach to improve stepping automaticity while dual-tasking in Parkinson's disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chomiak, Taylor; Watts, Alexander; Meyer, Nicole; Pereira, Fernando V.; Hu, Bin

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Background: Deficits in motor movement automaticity in Parkinson's disease (PD), especially during multitasking, are early and consistent hallmarks of cognitive function decline, which increases fall risk and reduces quality of life. This study aimed to test the feasibility and potential efficacy of a wearable sensor-enabled technological platform designed for an in-home music-contingent stepping-in-place (SIP) training program to improve step automaticity during dual-tasking (DT). Methods: This was a 4-week prospective intervention pilot study. The intervention uses a sensor system and algorithm that runs off the iPod Touch which calculates step height (SH) in real-time. These measurements were then used to trigger auditory (treatment group, music; control group, radio podcast) playback in real-time through wireless headphones upon maintenance of repeated large amplitude stepping. With small steps or shuffling, auditory playback stops, thus allowing participants to use anticipatory motor control to regain positive feedback. Eleven participants were recruited from an ongoing trial (Trial Number: ISRCTN06023392). Fear of falling (FES-I), general cognitive functioning (MoCA), self-reported freezing of gait (FOG-Q), and DT step automaticity were evaluated. Results: While we found no significant effect of training on FES-I, MoCA, or FOG-Q, we did observe a significant group (music vs podcast) by training interaction in DT step automaticity (Pmusically-contingent SIP training to increase motor automaticity for people living with PD. The training approach described here can be implemented at home to meet the growing demand for self-management of symptoms by patients. PMID:28151878

  15. A white matter lesion-filling approach to improve brain tissue volume measurements

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergi Valverde

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Multiple sclerosis white matter (WM lesions can affect brain tissue volume measurements of voxel-wise segmentation methods if these lesions are included in the segmentation process. Several authors have presented different techniques to improve brain tissue volume estimations by filling WM lesions before segmentation with intensities similar to those of WM. Here, we propose a new method to refill WM lesions, where contrary to similar approaches, lesion voxel intensities are replaced by random values of a normal distribution generated from the mean WM signal intensity of each two-dimensional slice. We test the performance of our method by estimating the deviation in tissue volume between a set of 30 T1-w 1.5 T and 30 T1-w 3 T images of healthy subjects and the same images where: WM lesions have been previously registered and afterwards replaced their voxel intensities to those between gray matter (GM and WM tissue. Tissue volume is computed independently using FAST and SPM8. When compared with the state-of-the-art methods, on 1.5 T data our method yields the lowest deviation in WM between original and filled images, independently of the segmentation method used. It also performs the lowest differences in GM when FAST is used and equals to the best method when SPM8 is employed. On 3 T data, our method also outperforms the state-of-the-art methods when FAST is used while performs similar to the best method when SPM8 is used. The proposed technique is currently available to researchers as a stand-alone program and as an SPM extension.

  16. Improved EDELWEISS-III sensitivity for low-mass WIMPs using a profile likelihood approach

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hehn, L. [Karlsruher Institut fuer Technologie, Institut fuer Kernphysik, Karlsruhe (Germany); Armengaud, E.; Boissiere, T. de; Gros, M.; Navick, X.F.; Nones, C.; Paul, B. [CEA Saclay, DSM/IRFU, Gif-sur-Yvette Cedex (France); Arnaud, Q. [Univ Lyon, Universite Claude Bernard Lyon 1, CNRS/IN2P3, Institut de Physique Nucleaire de Lyon, Lyon (France); Queen' s University, Kingston (Canada); Augier, C.; Billard, J.; Cazes, A.; Charlieux, F.; Jesus, M. de; Gascon, J.; Juillard, A.; Queguiner, E.; Sanglard, V.; Vagneron, L. [Univ Lyon, Universite Claude Bernard Lyon 1, CNRS/IN2P3, Institut de Physique Nucleaire de Lyon, Lyon (France); Benoit, A.; Camus, P. [Institut Neel, CNRS/UJF, Grenoble (France); Berge, L.; Chapellier, M.; Dumoulin, L.; Giuliani, A.; Le-Sueur, H.; Marnieros, S.; Olivieri, E.; Poda, D. [CSNSM, Univ. Paris-Sud, CNRS/IN2P3, Universite Paris-Saclay, Orsay (France); Bluemer, J. [Karlsruher Institut fuer Technologie, Institut fuer Kernphysik, Karlsruhe (Germany); Karlsruher Institut fuer Technologie, Institut fuer Experimentelle Kernphysik, Karlsruhe (Germany); Broniatowski, A. [CSNSM, Univ. Paris-Sud, CNRS/IN2P3, Universite Paris-Saclay, Orsay (France); Karlsruher Institut fuer Technologie, Institut fuer Experimentelle Kernphysik, Karlsruhe (Germany); Eitel, K.; Kozlov, V.; Siebenborn, B. [Karlsruher Institut fuer Technologie, Institut fuer Kernphysik, Karlsruhe (Germany); Foerster, N.; Heuermann, G.; Scorza, S. [Karlsruher Institut fuer Technologie, Institut fuer Experimentelle Kernphysik, Karlsruhe (Germany); Jin, Y. [Laboratoire de Photonique et de Nanostructures, CNRS, Route de Nozay, Marcoussis (France); Kefelian, C. [Univ Lyon, Universite Claude Bernard Lyon 1, CNRS/IN2P3, Institut de Physique Nucleaire de Lyon, Lyon (France); Karlsruher Institut fuer Technologie, Institut fuer Experimentelle Kernphysik, Karlsruhe (Germany); Kleifges, M.; Tcherniakhovski, D.; Weber, M. [Karlsruher Institut fuer Technologie, Institut fuer Prozessdatenverarbeitung und Elektronik, Karlsruhe (Germany); Kraus, H. [University of Oxford, Department of Physics, Oxford (United Kingdom); Kudryavtsev, V.A. [University of Sheffield, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Sheffield (United Kingdom); Pari, P. [CEA Saclay, DSM/IRAMIS, Gif-sur-Yvette (France); Piro, M.C. [CSNSM, Univ. Paris-Sud, CNRS/IN2P3, Universite Paris-Saclay, Orsay (France); Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY (United States); Rozov, S.; Yakushev, E. [JINR, Laboratory of Nuclear Problems, Dubna, Moscow Region (Russian Federation); Schmidt, B. [Karlsruher Institut fuer Technologie, Institut fuer Kernphysik, Karlsruhe (Germany); Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, CA (United States)

    2016-10-15

    We report on a dark matter search for a Weakly Interacting Massive Particle (WIMP) in the mass range m{sub χ} element of [4, 30] GeV/c{sup 2} with the EDELWEISS-III experiment. A 2D profile likelihood analysis is performed on data from eight selected detectors with the lowest energy thresholds leading to a combined fiducial exposure of 496 kg-days. External backgrounds from γ- and β-radiation, recoils from {sup 206}Pb and neutrons as well as detector intrinsic backgrounds were modelled from data outside the region of interest and constrained in the analysis. The basic data selection and most of the background models are the same as those used in a previously published analysis based on boosted decision trees (BDT) [1]. For the likelihood approach applied in the analysis presented here, a larger signal efficiency and a subtraction of the expected background lead to a higher sensitivity, especially for the lowest WIMP masses probed. No statistically significant signal was found and upper limits on the spin-independent WIMP-nucleon scattering cross section can be set with a hypothesis test based on the profile likelihood test statistics. The 90 % C.L. exclusion limit set for WIMPs with m{sub χ} = 4 GeV/c{sup 2} is 1.6 x 10{sup -39} cm{sup 2}, which is an improvement of a factor of seven with respect to the BDT-based analysis. For WIMP masses above 15 GeV/c{sup 2} the exclusion limits found with both analyses are in good agreement. (orig.)

  17. Analyzing topography effects for l-band radiometry using an improved model approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, X.; Weihermüller, L.; Zhang, L. X.; Jiang, L. M.; Vereecken, H.

    2012-04-01

    Global measurements of soil moisture, the key variables in the water cycle, are provided by spaceborne radiometer based on the long wavelength detection. As one potentially critical factor, topography will induce soil moisture retrieval error over mountain areas from space. Therefore, it is imperative to develop microwave radiative transfer models for L-band over mountain areas characterized by low complexity, and therefore, practical use. To address this issue, we pay close attention to the interactive mechanism between topography and microwave radiation by describing microwave radiation characteristics of terrain scenes. To explore the mechanism of relief effects on L-band, landscape scenes are generated based on Gaussian surfaces ranging from flat terrain to multiple hills within a 35 x 35 km scene. The scattering radiation, one of contributions to the L-band microwave signal, had undergone the fairly reasonable modification that we recalculated the mutual diffuse reflection of adjacent hills instead of the maximal unidirectional diffuse reflection. Therefore, an improved microwave radiative transfer model to simulate relief effects was proposed. Based on the model, the significance of soil moisture and land surface temperature to relief effects in these terrain scenes are analyzed respectively. When the soil becomes wetter the deviation of TB between flat and mountainous terrain is enhanced. In contrast to water content, land surface temperature has a negligible effect with less than 1 K for both polarizations. Besides, the impact of topography on brightness temperature and soil moisture retrieval is predicted. It is shown that the soil moisture retrieval error at L band arisen by topography is more than 4%, the maximum permissible error, and the maximum fractional error of soil moisture retrieval compared to soil moisture in the flat terrain is 77.6%. The results presented indicate the necessity of eliminating relief effects at L-band and our approach provides

  18. IMPACT OF REPRESENTATIONAL APPROACH ON THE IMPROVEMENT OF STUDENTS’ UNDERSTANDING OF ACCELERATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sutopo -

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Penelitian ini mengkaji dampak pendekatan representasi pada peningkatan pemahaman siswa tentang konsep percepatan. Subjek penelitian terdiri atas 24 mahasiswa pendidikan fisika Universitas Negeri Malang yang mengambil matakuliah Kapita Selekta Fisika Sekolah pada semester gasal tahun akademik 2011/2012. Dengan menggunakan desain penelitian mixed-method, disimpulkan beberapa dampak sebagai berikut: (1 Skor penguasaan konsep mahasiswa meningkat secara signifikan dari rata-rata 50,8% menjadi 85,0%, dengan efect size yang sangat tinggi (1,67 dan gain ternormalisasi yang juga tinggi (0,71. (2 Mahasiswa mampu menggunakan definisi operasional percepatan   untuk menganalisis diagram gerak yang berupa multi-flash; (3 Mahasiswa bisa memperbaiki sejumlah miskonsepsinya tentang percepatan; (4 Namun, sebagian kecil mahasiswa masih terpaku dengan miskonsepsinya bahwa percepatan benda yang ditembakkan ke atas berkurang seiring dengan ketinggiannya, dan tegangan tali pada ayunan selalu sama dengan berat pendulum.This research examined the impact of representational approach on the improvement of students’ understanding of acceleration. Subject consisted of 24 prospective physics teacher students of State University of Malang, enrolling Selected Topic of School Physics course in Semester I of 2011/2012 academic year. Using mixed-methods design, this study concluded that (1 students’ mean score of conceptual test increased significantly from 50.8% to 85.0% with very large d-effect size (1.67 and high normalized-gain (0.71, (2 students became able to use operational definition of acceleration   to analyze multi-flash motion diagram, and (3 students remediated their misconceptions of acceleration. However, few students stuck in their misconception that acceleration of a shot-up object is decreasing with its elevation, and the tension in the rope of a swinging pendulum is equal to the weight of its bob.

  19. Improving the extent of malignant glioma resection by dual intraoperative visualization approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ilker Y Eyüpoglu

    Full Text Available Despite continuing debates around cytoreductive surgery in malignant gliomas, there is broad consensus that increased extent of tumor reduction improves overall survival. However, maximization of the extent of tumor resection is hampered by difficulty in intraoperative discrimination between normal and pathological tissue. In this context, two established methods for tumor visualization, fluorescence guided surgery with 5-ALA and intraoperative MRI (iMRI with integrated functional neuronavigation were investigated as a dual intraoperative visualization (DIV approach. Thirty seven patients presumably suffering from malignant gliomas (WHO grade III or IV according to radiological appearance were included. Twenty-one experimental sequences showing complete resection according to the 5-ALA technique were confirmed by iMRI. Fourteen sequences showing complete resection according to the 5-ALA technique could not be confirmed by iMRI, which detected residual tumor. Further analysis revealed that these sequences could be classified as functional grade II tumors (adjacent to eloquent brain areas. The combination of fluorescence guided resection and intraoperative evaluation by high field MRI significantly increased the extent of tumor resection in this subgroup of malignant gliomas located adjacent to eloquent areas from 61.7% to 100%; 5-ALA alone proved to be insufficient in attaining gross total resection without the danger of incurring postoperative neurological deterioration. Furthermore, in the case of functional grade III gliomas, iMRI in combination with functional neuronavigation was significantly superior to the 5-ALA resection technique. The extent of resection could be increased from 57.1% to 71.2% without incurring postoperative neurological deficits.

  20. Water-sanitation-hygiene mapping: an improved approach for data collection at local level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giné-Garriga, Ricard; de Palencia, Alejandro Jiménez-Fernández; Pérez-Foguet, Agustí

    2013-10-01

    Strategic planning and appropriate development and management of water and sanitation services are strongly supported by accurate and accessible data. If adequately exploited, these data might assist water managers with performance monitoring, benchmarking comparisons, policy progress evaluation, resources allocation, and decision making. A variety of tools and techniques are in place to collect such information. However, some methodological weaknesses arise when developing an instrument for routine data collection, particularly at local level: i) comparability problems due to heterogeneity of indicators, ii) poor reliability of collected data, iii) inadequate combination of different information sources, and iv) statistical validity of produced estimates when disaggregated into small geographic subareas. This study proposes an improved approach for water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) data collection at decentralised level in low income settings, as an attempt to overcome previous shortcomings. The ultimate aim is to provide local policymakers with strong evidences to inform their planning decisions. The survey design takes the Water Point Mapping (WPM) as a starting point to record all available water sources at a particular location. This information is then linked to data produced by a household survey. Different survey instruments are implemented to collect reliable data by employing a variety of techniques, such as structured questionnaires, direct observation and water quality testing. The collected data is finally validated through simple statistical analysis, which in turn produces valuable outputs that might feed into the decision-making process. In order to demonstrate the applicability of the method, outcomes produced from three different case studies (Homa Bay District-Kenya-; Kibondo District-Tanzania-; and Municipality of Manhiça-Mozambique-) are presented. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Personalized support for chronic conditions. A novel approach for enhancing self-management and improving lifestyle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lasorsa, Irene; D Antrassi, Pierluigi; Ajčević, Miloš; Stellato, Kira; Di Lenarda, Andrea; Marceglia, Sara; Accardo, Agostino

    2016-07-06

    Solutions for improving management of chronic conditions are under the attention of healthcare systems, due to the increasing prevalence caused by demographic change and better survival, and the relevant impact on healthcare expenditures. The objective of this study was to propose a comprehensive architecture of a mHealth system aimed at boosting the active and informed participation of patients in their care process, while at the same time overcoming the current technical and psychological/clinical issues highlighted by the existing literature. After having studied the current challenges outlined in the literature, both in terms of technological and human requirements, we focused our attention on some specific psychological aspects with a view to providing patients with a comprehensive and personalized solution. Our approach has been reinforced through the results of a preliminary assessment we conducted on 22 patients with chronic conditions. The main goal of such an assessment was to provide a preliminary understanding of their needs in a real context, both in terms of self-awareness and of their predisposition toward the use of IT solutions. According to the specific needs and features, such as mindfulness and gamification, which were identified through the literature and the preliminary assessment, we designed a comprehensive open architecture able to provide a tailor-made solution linked to specific individuals' needs. The present study represents the preliminary step towards the development of a solution aimed at enhancing patients' actual perception and encouraging self-management and self-awareness for a better lifestyle. Future work regards further identification of pathology-related needs and requirements through focus groups including all stakeholders in order to describe the architecture and functionality in greater detail.

  2. Stabilizing Dog Populations and Improving Animal and Public Health Through a Participatory Approach in Indigenous Communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schurer, J M; Phipps, K; Okemow, C; Beatch, H; Jenkins, E

    2015-09-01

    Free-roaming dog populations are a global concern for animal and human health including transmission of infectious disease (e.g. rabies, distemper and parasites), dog bite injuries/mortalities, animal welfare and adverse effects on wildlife. In Saskatchewan (SK), Canada, veterinary care is difficult to access in the remote and sparsely inhabited northern half of the province, where the population is predominately Indigenous. Even where veterinary clinics are readily available, there are important barriers such as cost, lack of transportation, unique cultural perspectives on dog husbandry and perceived need for veterinary care. We report the effects of introducing a community action plan designed to improve animal and human health, increase animal health literacy and benefit community well-being in two Indigenous communities where a dog-related child fatality recently occurred. Initial door-to-door dog demographic surveys indicated that most dogs were sexually intact (92% of 382 dogs), and few had ever been vaccinated (6%) or dewormed (6%). Approximately three animal-related injuries requiring medical care were reported in the communities per 1000 persons per year (95% CL: 1.6-6.6), and approximately 86% of 145 environmentally collected dog faecal samples contained parasites, far above levels reported in other urban or rural settings in SK. Following two subsidized spay/neuter clinics and active rehoming of dogs, parasite levels in dog faeces decreased significantly (P < 0.001), and important changes were observed in the dog demographic profile. This project demonstrates the importance of engaging people using familiar, local resources and taking a community specific approach. As well, it highlights the value of integrated, cross-jurisdictional cooperation, utilizing the resources of university researchers, veterinary personnel, public health, environmental health and community-based advocates to work together to solve complex issues in One Health. On

  3. A 3D approach to equilibrium, stability and transport studies in RFX-mod improved regimes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Terranova, D; Bonfiglio, D; Gobbin, M; Lorenzini, R; Marrelli, L; Martines, E; Momo, B; Predebon, I; Spizzo, G; Agostini, M; Alfier, A; Apolloni, L; Auriemma, F; Baruzzo, M; Bolzonella, T [Consorzio RFX, Associazione EURATOM-ENEA sulla Fusione, Padova (Italy); Boozer, A H [Department of Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics, Columbia University, New York, NY (United States); Cooper, A W [EPFL, Association EURATOM-Confederation Suisse, Centre de Recherches en Physique des Plasmas, Lausanne (Switzerland); Hirshman, S P; Sanchez, R [ORNL Fusion Energy Division, Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Pomphrey, N, E-mail: david.terranova@igi.cnr.i [Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, Princeton, NJ (United States)

    2010-12-15

    The full three-dimensional (3D) approach is now becoming an important issue for all magnetic confinement configurations. It is a necessary condition for the stellarator but also the tokamak and the reversed field pinch (RFP) now cannot be completely described in an axisymmetric framework. For the RFP the observation of self-sustained helical configurations with improved plasma performances require a better description in order to assess a new view on this configuration. In this new framework plasma configuration studies for RFX-mod have been considered both with tools developed for the RFP as well as considering codes originally developed for the stellarator and adapted to the RFP. These helical states are reached through a transition to a very low/reversed shear configuration leading to internal electron transport barriers. These states are interrupted by MHD reconnection events and the large T{sub e} gradients at the barriers indicate that both current and pressure driven modes are to be considered. Furthermore the typically flat T{sub e} profiles in the helical core have raised the issue of the role of electrostatic and electromagnetic turbulence in these reduced chaos regions, so that a stability analysis in the correct 3D geometry is required to address an optimization of the plasma setup. In this view the VMEC code proved to be an effective way to obtain helical equilibria to be studied in terms of stability and transport with a suite of well tested codes. In this work, the equilibrium reconstruction technique as well as the experimental evidence of 3D effects and their first interpretation in terms of stability and transport are presented using both RFP and stellarator tools.

  4. A 3D approach to equilibrium, stability and transport studies in RFX-mod improved regimes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Terranova, D. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Bonfiglio, D. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Boozer, A. H. [Columbia University; Cooper, W Anthony [CRPP/EPFL, Association Euratom-Suisse, Lausanne, Switzerland; Gobbin, M. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Hirshman, Steven Paul [ORNL; Lorenzini, R. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Marrelli, L. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Martines, E. [RFX, Padova, Italy; Momo, B. [RFX, Padova, Italy; Pomphrey, N. [Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL); Predebon, I. [RFX, Padova, Italy; Sanchez, Raul [ORNL; Spizzo, G. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Agnostini, M. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Alfier, A. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Apolloni, L. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Auriemma, F. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Baruzzo, M. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Bolzonella, T. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Bonomo, F. [Consorzio RFX, Italy; Brombin, M. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Canton, A. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Cappello, S. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua; Carraro, L. [Association Euratom ENEA Fusion, Consorzio RFX, Padua

    2010-01-01

    The full three-dimensional (3D) approach is now becoming an important issue for all magnetic confinement configurations. It is a necessary condition for the stellarator but also the tokamak and the reversed field pinch (RFP) now cannot be completely described in an axisymmetric framework. For the RFP the observation of self-sustained helical configurations with improved plasma performances require a better description in order to assess a new view on this configuration. In this new framework plasma configuration studies for RFX-mod have been considered both with tools developed for the RFP as well as considering codes originally developed for the stellarator and adapted to the RFP. These helical states are reached through a transition to a very low/reversed shear configuration leading to internal electron transport barriers. These states are interrupted by MHD reconnection events and the large T(e) gradients at the barriers indicate that both current and pressure driven modes are to be considered. Furthermore the typically flat T(e) profiles in the helical core have raised the issue of the role of electrostatic and electromagnetic turbulence in these reduced chaos regions, so that a stability analysis in the correct 3D geometry is required to address an optimization of the plasma setup. In this view the VMEC code proved to be an effective way to obtain helical equilibria to be studied in terms of stability and transport with a suite of well tested codes. In this work, the equilibrium reconstruction technique as well as the experimental evidence of 3D effects and their first interpretation in terms of stability and transport are presented using both RFP and stellarator tools.

  5. Highly curved image sensors: a practical approach for improved optical performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guenter, Brian; Joshi, Neel; Stoakley, Richard; Keefe, Andrew; Geary, Kevin; Freeman, Ryan; Hundley, Jake; Patterson, Pamela; Hammon, David; Herrera, Guillermo; Sherman, Elena; Nowak, Andrew; Schubert, Randall; Brewer, Peter; Yang, Louis; Mott, Russell; McKnight, Geoff

    2017-06-01

    The significant optical and size benefits of using a curved focal surface for imaging systems have been well studied yet never brought to market for lack of a high-quality, mass-producible, curved image sensor. In this work we demonstrate that commercial silicon CMOS image sensors can be thinned and formed into accurate, highly curved optical surfaces with undiminished functionality. Our key development is a pneumatic forming process that avoids rigid mechanical constraints and suppresses wrinkling instabilities. A combination of forming-mold design, pressure membrane elastic properties, and controlled friction forces enables us to gradually contact the die at the corners and smoothly press the sensor into a spherical shape. Allowing the die to slide into the concave target shape enables a threefold increase in the spherical curvature over prior approaches having mechanical constraints that resist deformation, and create a high-stress, stretch-dominated state. Our process creates a bridge between the high precision and low-cost but planar CMOS process, and ideal non-planar component shapes such as spherical imagers for improved optical systems. We demonstrate these curved sensors in prototype cameras with custom lenses, measuring exceptional resolution of 3220 line-widths per picture height at an aperture of f/1.2 and nearly 100% relative illumination across the field. Though we use a 1/2.3" format image sensor in this report, we also show this process is generally compatible with many state of the art imaging sensor formats. By example, we report photogrammetry test data for an APS-C sized silicon die formed to a 30$^\\circ$ subtended spherical angle. These gains in sharpness and relative illumination enable a new generation of ultra-high performance, manufacturable, digital imaging systems for scientific, industrial, and artistic use.

  6. Biological computational approaches: new hopes to improve (re)programming robustness, regenerative medicine and cancer therapeutics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebrahimi, Behnam

    2016-01-01

    Hundreds of transcription factors (TFs) are expressed and work in each cell type, but the identity of the cells is defined and maintained through the activity of a small number of core TFs. Existing reprogramming strategies predominantly focus on the ectopic expression of core TFs of an intended fate in a given cell type regardless of the state of native/somatic gene regulatory networks (GRNs) of the starting cells. Interestingly, an important point is that how much products of the reprogramming, transdifferentiation and differentiation (programming) are identical to their in vivo counterparts. There is evidence that shows that direct fate conversions of somatic cells are not complete, with target cell identity not fully achieved. Manipulation of core TFs provides a powerful tool for engineering cell fate in terms of extinguishment of native GRNs, the establishment of a new GRN, and preventing installation of aberrant GRNs. Conventionally, core TFs are selected to convert one cell type into another mostly based on literature and the experimental identification of genes that are differentially expressed in one cell type compared to the specific cell types. Currently, there is not a universal standard strategy for identifying candidate core TFs. Remarkably, several biological computational platforms are developed, which are capable of evaluating the fidelity of reprogramming methods and refining existing protocols. The current review discusses some deficiencies of reprogramming technologies in the production of a pure population of authentic target cells. Furthermore, it reviews the role of computational approaches (e.g. CellNet, KeyGenes, Mogrify, etc.) in improving (re)programming methods and consequently in regenerative medicine and cancer therapeutics.

  7. Innovative Approaches Using Lichen Enriched Media to Improve Isolation and Culturability of Lichen Associated Bacteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biosca, Elena G.; Flores, Raquel; Santander, Ricardo D.; Díez-Gil, José Luis; Barreno, Eva

    2016-01-01

    Lichens, self-supporting mutualistic associations between a fungal partner and one or more photosynthetic partners, also harbor non-photosynthetic bacteria. The diversity and contribution of these bacteria to the functioning of lichen symbiosis have recently begun to be studied, often by culture-independent techniques due to difficulties in their isolation and culture. However, culturing as yet unculturable lichenic bacteria is critical to unravel their potential functional roles in lichen symbiogenesis, to explore and exploit their biotechnological potential and for the description of new taxa. Our objective was to improve the recovery of lichen associated bacteria by developing novel isolation and culture approaches, initially using the lichen Pseudevernia furfuracea. We evaluated the effect of newly developed media enriched with novel lichen extracts, as well as the influence of thalli washing time and different disinfection and processing protocols of thalli. The developed methodology included: i) the use of lichen enriched media to mimic lichen nutrients, supplemented with the fungicide natamycin; ii) an extended washing of thalli to increase the recovery of ectolichenic bacteria, thus allowing the disinfection of thalli to be discarded, hence enhancing endolichenic bacteria recovery; and iii) the use of an antioxidant buffer to prevent or reduce oxidative stress during thalli disruption. The optimized methodology allowed significant increases in the number and diversity of culturable bacteria associated with P. furfuracea, and it was also successfully applied to the lichens Ramalina farinacea and Parmotrema pseudotinctorum. Furthermore, we provide, for the first time, data on the abundance of culturable ecto- and endolichenic bacteria that naturally colonize P. furfuracea, R. farinacea and P. pseudotinctorum, some of which were only able to grow on lichen enriched media. This innovative methodology is also applicable to other microorganisms inhabiting these

  8. Fluorescence modulation by absorbent on solid surface: an improved approach for designing fluorescent sensor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Sheng; Wang, Changyao; Liu, Changhui; Wang, Yijun; Xiao, Yue; Li, Jishan; Li, Yinhui; Yang, Ronghua

    2014-08-05

    Inner filter effect (IFE), a well-known phenomenon of fluorescence quenching resulting from absorption of the excitation or emission light of luminescent species by absorbent, has been used as a smart approach to design fluorescent sensors, which are characterized by the simplicity and flexibility with high sensitivity. However, further application of IFE-based sensors in complex environment is hampered by the insufficient IFE efficiency and low sensitivity resulting from interference of the external environment. In this paper, we report that IFE occurring on a solid substrate surface would solve this problem. As a proof of concept, a fluorescent sensor for intracellular biothiols has been developed on the basis of the absorption of a newly designed thiols-specific chromogenic probe (CP) coupled with the use of a thiols-independent fluorophore, rhodamine 6G (R6G), operative on the IFE on graphene oxide (GO). To construct an efficient IFE system, R6G was covalently attached to GO, and the CP molecules were adsorbed on the surface of R6G-GO via π-π stacking interaction. The reaction of thiols with CP on R6G-GO decreases the absorption of CP, resulting in the increase of the intensity of R6G fluorescence. The results showed that the IFE efficiency, sensitivity, and dynamic response time of R6G-GO/CP for biothiols could be significantly improved compared with R6G/CP, and furthermore, R6G-GO/CP functioned under complex system and could be used for assaying biothiols in living cells and in human serum samples. This new strategy would be general to explore the development of more effective IFE-based sensors for other analytes of interest.

  9. Dynamic Model Improves Agronomic and Environmental Outcomes for Maize Nitrogen Management over Static Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sela, Shai; van Es, Harold M; Moebius-Clune, Bianca N; Marjerison, Rebecca; Moebius-Clune, Daniel; Schindelbeck, Robert; Severson, Keith; Young, Eric

    2017-03-01

    Large temporal and spatial variability in soil nitrogen (N) availability leads many farmers across the United States to over-apply N fertilizers in maize ( L.) production environments, often resulting in large environmental N losses. Static Stanford-type N recommendation tools are typically promoted in the United States, but new dynamic model-based decision tools allow for highly adaptive N recommendations that account for specific production environments and conditions. This study compares the Corn N Calculator (CNC), a static N recommendation tool for New York, to Adapt-N, a dynamic simulation tool that combines soil, crop, and management information with real-time weather data to estimate optimum N application rates for maize. The efficiency of the two tools in predicting the Economically Optimum N Rate (EONR) is compared using field data from 14 multiple N-rate trials conducted in New York during the years 2011 through 2015. The CNC tool was used with both realistic grower-estimated potential yields and those extracted from the CNC default database, which were found to be unrealistically low when compared with field data. By accounting for weather and site-specific conditions, the Adapt-N tool was found to increase the farmer profits and significantly improve the prediction of the EONR (RMSE = 34 kg ha). Furthermore, using a dynamic instead of a static approach led to reduced N application rates, which in turn resulted in substantially lower simulated environmental N losses. This study shows that better N management through a dynamic decision tool such as Adapt-N can help reduce environmental impacts while sustaining farm economic viability. Copyright © by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, Inc.

  10. Innovative Approaches Using Lichen Enriched Media to Improve Isolation and Culturability of Lichen Associated Bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biosca, Elena G; Flores, Raquel; Santander, Ricardo D; Díez-Gil, José Luis; Barreno, Eva

    2016-01-01

    Lichens, self-supporting mutualistic associations between a fungal partner and one or more photosynthetic partners, also harbor non-photosynthetic bacteria. The diversity and contribution of these bacteria to the functioning of lichen symbiosis have recently begun to be studied, often by culture-independent techniques due to difficulties in their isolation and culture. However, culturing as yet unculturable lichenic bacteria is critical to unravel their potential functional roles in lichen symbiogenesis, to explore and exploit their biotechnological potential and for the description of new taxa. Our objective was to improve the recovery of lichen associated bacteria by developing novel isolation and culture approaches, initially using the lichen Pseudevernia furfuracea. We evaluated the effect of newly developed media enriched with novel lichen extracts, as well as the influence of thalli washing time and different disinfection and processing protocols of thalli. The developed methodology included: i) the use of lichen enriched media to mimic lichen nutrients, supplemented with the fungicide natamycin; ii) an extended washing of thalli to increase the recovery of ectolichenic bacteria, thus allowing the disinfection of thalli to be discarded, hence enhancing endolichenic bacteria recovery; and iii) the use of an antioxidant buffer to prevent or reduce oxidative stress during thalli disruption. The optimized methodology allowed significant increases in the number and diversity of culturable bacteria associated with P. furfuracea, and it was also successfully applied to the lichens Ramalina farinacea and Parmotrema pseudotinctorum. Furthermore, we provide, for the first time, data on the abundance of culturable ecto- and endolichenic bacteria that naturally colonize P. furfuracea, R. farinacea and P. pseudotinctorum, some of which were only able to grow on lichen enriched media. This innovative methodology is also applicable to other microorganisms inhabiting these

  11. The Geophysical Kitchen Sink Approach to Improving our Understanding of Volcano-Tectonic Interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    George, Ophelia A.

    A multi-prong approach was taken in this dissertation to understand volcanic processes from both a long-term and more immediate hazard perspective. In the long-term, magma sources within the crust may produce measurable surficial response and long-wavelength gravity anomalies that provide information about the extent and depth of this magma. Long-term volcanic hazard forecasting is also improved by developing as complete a record as possible of past events. In the short-term, a long-standing question has been on the casting of precursory volcanic activity in terms of future volcanic hazards. Three studies are presented in this dissertation to address these issues. Inversion of high-resolution ground magnetic data in Amargosa Valley, NV indicates that anomaly B could be generated by a buried shield volcano. This new information changes the event count in this region which in turn affects the overall volcanic hazard estimation. Through the use of Finite Element Models (FEM) an in-depth characterization of the surficial response to magma underplating is provided for the Tohoku Volcanic Arc, Japan. These models indicate that surficial uplift was dominantly driven by mid-crustal intrusions and the magnitude and wavelength of this uplift was mainly controlled by the elastic layer thickness. In Dominica, seismic data were used as weights in spatial intensity maps to generate dynamic volcanic hazard maps influenced by changes in seismicity. These maps show an increasing trend in the north that may be indicative of an increase in earthquake and volcanic hazards.

  12. A new approach to improve dynamic characteristics of digitally controlled buck-boost dc-dc converter

    OpenAIRE

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a new digital control buck-boost dc-dc converter with bias model to improve dynamic characteristics. The buck-boost converter needs to respond appropriately to changing input voltage and load change with wide input voltage. This approach makes adjustment to the bias value by input voltage and output current. As a result, it is revealed that not only the dynamic characteristics but also static characteristics can be improved and it is effective for wide range input voltage.

  13. Uncertainty-accounted calculational-experimental approach for improved conservative evaluations of VVER RPV radiation loading parameters

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Borodkin, P.G.; Borodkin, G.I.; Khrennikov, N.N. [Scientific and Engineering Centre for Nuclear and Radiation Safety SEC NRS, Building 5, Malaya Krasnoselskaya Street, 2/8, 107140 Moscow (Russian Federation)

    2011-07-01

    The approach of improved uncertainty-accounted conservative evaluation of vodo-vodyanoi energetichesky reactor (VVER) (reactor-) pressure-vessel (RPV) radiation loading parameters has been proposed. This approach is based on the calculational-experimental procedure, which takes into account C/E ratio, depending on over- or underestimation, and uncertainties of measured and calculated results. An application of elaborated approach to the full-scale ex-vessel neutron dosimetry experiments on Russian VVERs combined with neutron-transport calculations has been demonstrated in the paper. (authors)

  14. Improvement in DTPA efficacy for plutonium decorporation: biokinetic and dosimetric approaches

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serandour, A.L.; Grillon, G.; Taulelle, C.; Frechou, M.; Ben Salah, M.; Fritsch, P.; Le Gall, B.; Poncy, J.L. [CEA Bruyeres-le-Chatel (DSV/DRR), Lab. Radiotoxicologie, 91 (France); Gervelas, C.; Tsapis, N.; Fatal, E. [Paris-11 Univ., UMR CNRS 8612, Physico-chimie-Pharmacotechnie-Biopharmacie, 92 - Chatenay-Malabry (France); Phan, G.; Benech, H. [CEA Saclay (DSV/DRM), Service de Pharmacologie et d' Immunologie, 91 - Gif-sur-Yvette (France); Deverre, J.R. [Service Hospitalier Frederic Joliot (CEA/DSV/DRM), 91 - Gif-sur-Yvette (France)

    2006-07-01

    amount of Pu in blood and STO. By contrast, a good was obtained after application of the new systemic model reported by Leggett et al[7]. The best fit was obtained by adding the hypothesis that, during the first 1 days following the contamination, 30% of Pu retained in a liver compartment liverO, was de-corporated, whereas, this value was only 3 % later on. As concerned the modeling of the behavior of Pu-DTPA, 3 compartments were considered (DTPAo (60 %, fraction daily excreted (Ia) 10 d{sup -1}) DTPA, (36 %, is 0.2 d{sup -1}) a DTPA2 (4 %, I 10.02 d{sup -1}). Moreover, 90 % of Pu in DTPAo and DTPA, can de-corporated after each DTPA treatment. Some experimental data suggest that the DTPA compartments are located within the kidneys. Dose calculation shows that the treatments reduced by a factor of 3 the systemic effective dose. Thus, the dosimetric approach is useful, both to justify a DTPA treatment and to optimize administration schedule on the basis of a reduction of doses. Validation of the modeling assumptions is needed. For this purpose new experiments will performed in rodents and non human primates by using different chemical forms of actinides, after various modes of contamination. Moreover, different galenic forms of DTPA will be administered. In conclusion, the combination of biokinetic and dosimetric approaches will provide a better knowledge in the mechanisms involved in DTPA decorporation of actinides which should be very useful to improve the management of accidental contamination in workers. Such an approach can only be performed by collaborative work involving pharmacology, radiobiology, radio-toxicology and radioprotection. (author)

  15. A Review of Approaches for Sensing, Understanding, and Improving Occupancy-Related Energy-Use Behaviors in Commercial Buildings

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamed Nabizadeh Rafsanjani

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Buildings currently account for 30–40 percent of total global energy consumption. In particular, commercial buildings are responsible for about 12 percent of global energy use and 21 percent of the United States’ energy use, and the energy demand of this sector continues to grow faster than other sectors. This increasing rate therefore raises a critical concern about improving the energy performance of commercial buildings. Recently, researchers have investigated ways in which understanding and improving occupants’ energy-consuming behaviors could function as a cost-effective approach to decreasing commercial buildings’ energy demands. The objective of this paper is to present a detailed, up-to-date review of various algorithms, models, and techniques employed in the pursuit of understanding and improving occupants’ energy-use behaviors in commercial buildings. Previous related studies are introduced and three main approaches are identified: (1 monitoring occupant-specific energy consumption; (2 Simulating occupant energy consumption behavior; and (3 improving occupant energy consumption behavior. The first approach employs intrusive and non-intrusive load-monitoring techniques to estimate the energy use of individual occupants. The second approach models diverse characteristics related to occupants’ energy-consuming behaviors in order to assess and predict such characteristics’ impacts on the energy performance of commercial buildings; this approach mostly utilizes agent-based modeling techniques to simulate actions and interactions between occupants and their built environment. The third approach employs occupancy-focused interventions to change occupants’ energy-use characteristics. Based on the detailed review of each approach, critical issues and current gaps in knowledge in the existing literature are discussed, and directions for future research opportunities in this field are provided.

  16. A multicriteria decision making approach applied to improving maintenance policies in healthcare organizations

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Carnero, María Carmen; Gómez, Andrés

    2016-01-01

    .... This article describes a multicriteria decision-making approach which integrates Markov chains with the multicriteria Measuring Attractiveness by a Categorical Based Evaluation Technique (MACBETH...

  17. Toward Finding an Approach for Improving Rhetorical Organization of EFL Learners’ Argumentative Writing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Toktam Miri

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed at examining the probable impact of three distinct approaches to teaching writing, namely Process, Process-product and Product approaches on the rhetorical organization of EFL learners’ argumentative essays. To fulfill this aim, after ensuring the homogeneity of the 45 participants of the study through Oxford Placement Test (OPT the learners who were all at the intermediate level of English proficiency were divided into three groups comprising of 15 learners, each receiving instruction for 6 sessions based on the aforementioned approaches. After teaching the basic structure of an argumentative essay, the students in each group were required to write an essay in each session. In the last session they were asked to produce an essay which was considered as their post-test. The rhetorical organization of their writings was analyzed using a rubric adopted from the study of Tsai (2006. Using SPSS 16, the results of One-way ANOVA at the alpha level of .05 revealed that there was a significant difference between those who wrote based on process approach and also process-product approach and those who were taught on the basis of product approach to writing. The pedagogical implications of the study are further discussed throughout the paper.Keywords: EFL writing, product approach, process approach, process-product approach, rhetorical organization

  18. Training self-assessment and task-selection skills: A cognitive approach to improving self-regulated learning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kostons, Danny; Van Gog, Tamara; Paas, Fred

    2012-01-01

    Kostons, D., Van Gog, T., & Paas, F. (2012). Training self-assessment and task-selection skills: A cognitive approach to improving self-regulated learning. Learning and Instruction, 22(2), 121-132. doi:10.1016/j.learninstruc.2011.08.004

  19. Development of Team Action Projects in Surgery (TAPS): a multilevel team-based approach to teaching quality improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waits, Seth A; Reames, Bradley N; Krell, Robert W; Bryner, Benjamin; Shih, Terry; Obi, Andrea T; Henke, Peter K; Minter, Rebecca M; Englesbe, Michael J; Wong, Sandra L

    2014-01-01

    To meet the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education core competency in Practice-Based Learning and Improvement, educational curricula need to address training in quality improvement (QI). We sought to establish a program to train residents in the principles of QI and to provide practical experiences in developing and implementing improvement projects. We present a novel approach for engaging students, residents, and faculty in QI efforts-Team Action Projects in Surgery (TAPS). Large academic medical center and health system. Multiple teams consisting of undergraduate students, medical students, surgery residents, and surgery faculty were assembled and QI projects developed. Using "managing to learn" Lean principles, these multilevel groups approached each project with robust data collection, development of an A3, and implementation of QI activities. A total of 5 resident led QI projects were developed during the TAPS pilot phase. These included a living kidney donor enhanced recovery protocol, consult improvement process, venous thromboembolism prophylaxis optimization, Clostridium difficile treatment standardization, and understanding variation in operative duration of laparoscopic cholecystectomy. Qualitative and quantitative assessment showed significant value for both the learner and stakeholders of QI related projects. Through the development of TAPS, we demonstrate a novel approach to addressing the increasing focus on QI within graduate medical education. Efforts to expand this multilevel team based approach would have value for teachers and learners alike. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  20. Improving 10th Graders' English Communicative Competence through the Implementation of the Task-Based Learning Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buitrago Campo, Ana Carolina

    2016-01-01

    This article reports the results of an action-research project focused on improving students' communicative competence in English through the task-based learning approach. This study was conducted in a co-educational public school in Medellín (Colombia) with thirty-four tenth graders. Actions implemented include the development of a series of…

  1. Training self-assessment and task-selection skills: A cognitive approach to improving self-regulated learning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kostons, Danny; Van Gog, Tamara; Paas, Fred

    2012-01-01

    Kostons, D., Van Gog, T., & Paas, F. (2012). Training self-assessment and task-selection skills: A cognitive approach to improving self-regulated learning. Learning and Instruction, 22(2), 121-132. doi:10.1016/j.learninstruc.2011.08.004

  2. Improving Sustainability in Global Supply Chains with Private Certification Standards: Testing An Approach for Assessing Their Performance and Impact Potential

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vermeulen, Walter; Metselaar, Janneke

    2015-01-01

    Sustainable supply chain governance approaches aim for improvement of environmental and community living conditions at the developing country's side of the global supply chains. Impact evaluation in remote and multiple sourcing countries is hardly done in practice because of its complexity and costs

  3. Multi-Input Single Output SSSC based damping controller design by a hybrid Improved Differential Evolution-Pattern Search approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panda, Sidhartha; Yegireddy, Narendra Kumar

    2015-09-01

    In this paper, a hybrid Improved Differential Evolution and Pattern Search (hIDEPS) approach is proposed for the design of a PI-Type Multi-Input Single Output (MISO) Static Synchronous Series Compensator (SSSC) based damping controller. The improvement in Differential Evolution (DE) algorithm is introduced by a simple but effective scheme of changing two of its most important control parameters i.e. step size and crossover probability with an objective of achieving improved performance. Pattern Search (PS) is subsequently employed to fine tune the best solution provided by modified DE algorithm. The superiority of a proposed hIDEPS technique over DE and improved DE has also been demonstrated. At the outset, this concept is applied to a SSSC connected in a Single Machine Infinite Bus (SMIB) power system and then extended to a multi-machine power system. To show the effectiveness and robustness of the proposed design approach, simulation results are presented and compared with DE and Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO) optimized Single Input Single Output (SISO) SSSC based damping controllers. It is observed that the proposed approach yield superior damping performance compared to some approaches available in the literature.

  4. Children with speech sound disorder: Comparing a non-linguistic auditory approach with a phonological intervention approach to improve phonological skills

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristina eMurphy

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to compare the effects of a non-linguistic auditory intervention approach with a phonological intervention approach on the phonological skills of children with speech sound disorder. A total of 17 children, aged 7-12 years, with speech sound disorder were randomly allocated to either the non-linguistic auditory temporal intervention group (n = 10, average age 7.7 ± 1.2 or phonological intervention group (n = 7, average age 8.6 ± 1.2. The intervention outcomes included auditory-sensory measures (auditory temporal processing skills and cognitive measures (attention, short-term memory, speech production and phonological awareness skills. The auditory approach focused on non-linguistic auditory training (eg. backward masking and frequency discrimination, whereas the phonological approach focused on speech sound training (eg. phonological organisation and awareness. Both interventions consisted of twelve 45-minute sessions delivered twice per week, for a total of nine hours. Intra-group analysis demonstrated that the auditory intervention group showed significant gains in both auditory and cognitive measures, whereas no significant gain was observed in the phonological intervention group. No significant improvement on phonological skills was observed in any of the groups. Inter-group analysis demonstrated significant differences between the improvement following training for both groups, with a more pronounced gain for the non-linguistic auditory temporal intervention in one of the visual attention measures and both auditory measures. Therefore, both analyses suggest that although the non-linguistic auditory intervention approach appeared to be the most effective intervention approach, it was not sufficient to promote the enhancement of phonological skills.

  5. Self-improvement and cooperation: How exchange relationships promote mastery-approach driven individuals’ job outcomes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Poortvliet, P.M.; Giebels, E.

    2012-01-01

    In the present research we argue that mastery-approach goals may be beneficial in social achievement contexts because these goals lead to constructive exchange relationship building. An examination of three methodologically complementary studies revealed that mastery-approach goals lead to more coop

  6. Improving Student Writing Using a Web-Based Targeted Approach to Grammar System (TAGS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson, Bruce

    2002-01-01

    Notes that the need to teach basic grammar has increased as journalism programs expand their focus to match workforce skills. Proposes that a Web-based Targeted Approach to Grammar System (TAGS) is a development in grammar checkers that is useful for teaching and learning. Discusses a pedagogical approach to using TAGS via the Web. (PM)

  7. Self-improvement and cooperation: How exchange relationships promote mastery-approach driven individuals’ job outcomes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Poortvliet, P.M.; Giebels, E.

    2012-01-01

    In the present research we argue that mastery-approach goals may be beneficial in social achievement contexts because these goals lead to constructive exchange relationship building. An examination of three methodologically complementary studies revealed that mastery-approach goals lead to more coop

  8. A Multidimensional Item Response Modeling Approach for Improving Subscale Proficiency Estimation and Classification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Lihua; Boughton, Keith A.

    2007-01-01

    Several approaches to reporting subscale scores can be found in the literature. This research explores a multidimensional compensatory dichotomous and polytomous item response theory modeling approach for subscale score proficiency estimation, leading toward a more diagnostic solution. It also develops and explores the recovery of a Markov chain…

  9. A Knowledge Engineering Approach to Developing Educational Computer Games for Improving Students' Differentiating Knowledge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, Gwo-Jen; Sung, Han-Yu; Hung, Chun-Ming; Yang, Li-Hsueh; Huang, Iwen

    2013-01-01

    Educational computer games have been recognized as being a promising approach for motivating students to learn. Nevertheless, previous studies have shown that without proper learning strategies or supportive models, the learning achievement of students might not be as good as expected. In this study, a knowledge engineering approach is proposed…

  10. Improvement of theoretik-methodical approaches to the estimation of regional marketing attractiveness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O.A. Bilovodska

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Modern approaches to understanding of territory as geogoods are analysed, differences and the general lines of concepts "competitiveness of territory" and "marketing attractiveness of territory" are defined. Methodical approaches to the analysis of regional marketing attractiveness are offered and the corresponding estimation of the Sumy, Poltava and Chernigov regions is done.

  11. Turbulence Analysis Upstream of a Wind Turbine: a LES Approach to Improve Wind LIDAR Technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calaf, M.

    2015-12-01

    Traditionally wind turbines learn about the incoming wind conditions by means of a wind vane and a cup anemometer. This approach presents two major limitations: 1) because the measurements are done at the nacelle, behind the rotor blades, the wind observations are perturbed inducing potential missalignement and power losses; 2) no direct information of the incoming turbulence is extracted, limiting the capacity to timely adjust the wind turbine against strong turbulent intensity events. Recent studies have explored the possibility of using wind LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) to overcome these limitations (Angelou et al. 2010 and Mikelsen et al., 2013). By installing a wind LIDAR at the nacelle of a wind turbine one can learn about the incoming wind and turbulent conditions ahead of time to timely readjust the turbine settings. Yet several questions remain to be answered such as how far upstream one should measure and what is the appropriate averaging time to extract valuable information. In light of recent results showing the relevance of atmospheric stratification in wind energy applications, it is expected that different averaging times and upstream scanning distances are advised for wind LIDAR measurements. A Large Eddy Simulation (LES) study exploring the use of wind LIDAR technology within a wind farm has been developed. The wind farm consists of an infinite array of horizontal axis wind turbines modeled using the actuator disk with rotation. The model also allows the turbines to dynamically adjust their yaw with the incoming wind vector. The flow is forced with a constant geostrophic wind and a time varying surface temperature reproducing a realistic diurnal cycle. Results will be presented showing the relevance of the averaging time for the different flow characteristics as well as the effect of different upstream scanning distances. While it is observed that within a large wind farm there are no-significant gains in power output by scanning further

  12. Therapeutic Improvement of Scarring: Mechanisms of Scarless and Scar-Forming Healing and Approaches to the Discovery of New Treatments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nick L. Occleston

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Scarring in the skin after trauma, surgery, burn or sports injury is a major medical problem, often resulting in loss of function, restriction of tissue movement and adverse psychological effects. Whilst various studies have utilised a range of model systems that have increased our understanding of the pathways and processes underlying scar formation, they have typically not translated to the development of effective therapeutic approaches for scar management. Existing treatments are unreliable and unpredictable and there are no prescription drugs for the prevention or treatment of dermal scarring. As a consequence, scar improvement still remains an area of clear medical need. Here we describe the basic science of scar-free and scar-forming healing, the utility of pre-clinical model systems, their translation to humans, and our pioneering approach to the discovery and development of therapeutic approaches for the prophylactic improvement of scarring in man

  13. Improving Ocean Color Data Products using a Purely Empirical Approach: Reducing the Requirement for Radiometric Calibration Accuracy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregg, Watson

    2008-01-01

    Radiometric calibration is the foundation upon which ocean color remote sensing is built. Quality derived geophysical products, such as chlorophyll, are assumed to be critically dependent upon the quality of the radiometric calibration. Unfortunately, the goals of radiometric calibration are not typically met in global and large-scale regional analyses, and are especially deficient in coastal regions. The consequences of the uncertainty in calibration are very large in terms of global and regional ocean chlorophyll estimates. In fact, stability in global chlorophyll requires calibration uncertainty much greater than the goals, and outside of modern capabilities. Using a purely empirical approach, we show that stable and consistent global chlorophyll values can be achieved over very wide ranges of uncertainty. Furthermore, the approach yields statistically improved comparisons with in situ data, suggesting improved quality. The results suggest that accuracy requirements for radiometric calibration cab be reduced if alternative empirical approaches are used.

  14. System-based participatory research in health care: an approach for sustainable translational research and quality improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmittdiel, Julie A; Grumbach, Kevin; Selby, Joe V

    2010-01-01

    Translational research seeks to improve health care by promoting action and change in real-world health care settings. Although translational research advocates a break from the traditional researcher-initiated approach to science, strategies to successfully engage clinicians and leaders of health care delivery organizations in research are still under development. We propose that applying the principles of community-based participatory research in a way that considers delivery systems-including their leaders, clinicians, and staff-as a focal community can enhance the ability of translational research to improve health care. Applying participatory research methods, such as engaging in collaborative partnerships, building on existing community strengths, investing in long-term relationships, and engaging in research as a cyclical, iterative process, can be a successful approach to sustainable quality improvement at the systems level.

  15. A modelling approach for improved implementation of information technology in manufacturing systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Michael Holm; Langer, Gilad; Kirkby, Lars Phillip

    2000-01-01

    concept into practice. The paper demonstrates the use of the approach in a practical case, which involves modelling of the shop floor activities and control system at the aluminium parts production at a Danish manufacturer of state-of-the-art audio-video equipment and telephones.......The paper presents a modelling approach, which is based on the multiple view perspective of Soft Systems Methodology and an encapsulation of these perspectives into an object orientated model. The approach provides a structured procedure for putting theoretical abstractions of a new production...

  16. A Modelling Approach for Improved Implementation of Information Technology in Manufacturing Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Langer, Gilad; Larsen, Michael Holm; Kirkby, Lars Phillip

    1997-01-01

    concept into practice. The paper demonstrates the use of the approach in a practical case. The case involves modelling of the shop floor activities and control system at the aluminium parts production at a Danish manufacturer of state-of-the-art audio-video equipment and telephones.......The paper presents a modelling approach which is based on the multiple view perspective of Soft Systems Methodology and an encapsulation of these perspectives into an object orientated model. The approach provide a structured procedure for putting theoretical abstractions of a new production...

  17. An Urban School Leader's Approach to School Improvement: Toward Contextually Responsive Leadership

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reed, Latish C.; Swaminathan, Raji

    2016-01-01

    This case study examines the leadership practices and actions of an urban high school principal who faced many challenges, but worked diligently to improve student achievement and school climate over a 3-year period. Significant improvements were made by using elements of Distributed Leadership, Professional Learning Communities, and Social…

  18. A Systems Thinking Approach To The Sustainability Of Quality Improvement Programmes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Van Dyk, Dirk Johannes

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available The challenge for organisations to continually provide the best return on investment for their shareholders has become increasingly difficult through globalisation of the market place. There are many responses a company could make to these challenges for example, new product development, increased market capitalisation, cost reduction initiatives, and quality management. This last response focuses on, but is not restricted to, customer satisfaction, continuous improvement, and environmental impact. Continuous improvement addresses waste in the business design and manufacturing processes, which could lead to improved profit margins. The sustainability of quality improvement programmes remains a challenge. Causality can be studied, using Six Sigma tools, to relate cause and effect. But these tools do not always allow the user to study and understand feedback from other factors, such as soft human issues, in the improvement process system, typically referred to as feedback causality. System dynamics may improve this understanding. Quality improvement programmes in the heavy engineering manufacturing environment are not researched to the same degree as those in the automotive manufacturing environment. The purpose of this paper is to share results from research into the sustainability of quality improvement programmes, and the development of an appropriate system dynamics model, using qualitative case study data gathered and coded in a heavy engineering manufacturing environment.

  19. Generic project definitions for improvement of health care delivery: A case-base approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Niemeijer, G.C.; Does, R.J.M.M.; de Mast, J.; Trip, A.; van den Heuvel, J.

    2011-01-01

    Background: The purpose of this article is to create actionable knowledge, making the definition of process improvement projects in health care delivery more effective. Methods: This study is a retrospective analysis of process improvement projects in hospitals, facilitating a case-based reasoning a

  20. SUM (Service Unit Management): An Organizational Approach To Improved Patient Care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jelinek, Richard C.; And Others

    To evaluate the effectiveness of Service Unit Management (SUM) in reducing costs, improving quality of care, saving professional nursing time, increasing personnel satisfaction, and setting a stage for further improvements, a national questionnaire survey identified the characteristics of SUM units, and compared the performance of a total of 55…

  1. Generic project definitions for improvement of health care delivery: A case-base approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Niemeijer, G.C.; Does, R.J.M.M.; de Mast, J.; Trip, A.; van den Heuvel, J.

    2011-01-01

    Background: The purpose of this article is to create actionable knowledge, making the definition of process improvement projects in health care delivery more effective. Methods: This study is a retrospective analysis of process improvement projects in hospitals, facilitating a case-based reasoning a

  2. A Novel Approach for the Diagnosis of Diabetes and Liver Cancer using ANFIS and Improved KNN

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Kalaiselvi

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The multi-factorial, chronicle, severe diseases are cancer and diabetes. As a result of abnormal level of glucose in body leads to heart attack, kidney disease, renal failure and cancer. Many studies have been proved that several types of cancer are possible in diabetes patients having a high blood sugar. Many approaches are proposed in the past to diagnose both cancer and diabetes. Even though the existing approaches are efficient one, the classification accuracy is poor. An Enhanced approach is proposed to achieve a higher efficiency and lower complexity. Adaptive neuro fuzzy inference system is used to classify the dataset with the help of adaptive group based KNN. The Pima Indian diabetes dataset are used as input dataset and classified based on the attribute information. The experimental result shows the classification accuracy is better than the existing approaches such FLANN, ANN with FUZZYKNN.

  3. An Improved Approach to perform Crawling and avoid Duplicate Web Pages

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dhiraj Khurana

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available When a web search is performed it includes many duplicate web pages or the websites. It means we can get number of similar pages at different web servers. We are proposing a Web Crawling Approach to Detect and avoid Duplicate or Near Duplicate WebPages. In this proposed work we are presenting a keyword Prioritization based approach to identify the web page over the web. As such pages will beidentified it will optimize the web search.

  4. An Improved Approach to Fracture Toughness Assessment of Brittle Coating on Ductile Substrate Systems under Indentation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demidova, Natalia V.

    substrate system, in order to obtain the required information for validating the proposed fracture toughness model. It is found that radial/median cracks are generated beneath the indenter within the coating layer in an elliptical shape and stopped at the interface under the indentation loads being used in the present experiments. Optical microscopy is employed to examine the surface (radial) crack lengths and the focused ion beam (FIB) technique is applied to dissecting the coating/substrate specimen and thereby allows for measuring the crack penetration depth; thus the full crack profile is determined. These tests have also verified the non-linear relationship between c3/2 (where c is a radial crack length) and the applied indentation load P, which is exhibited in the proposed fracture toughness model. The fracture toughness of the tested WC/10Co/4Cr coating/1080 steel substrate system is determined in terms of the proposed fracture toughness model, utilizing the experimental results. The fracture toughness value for this coating/substrate system is then compared to the known fracture toughness value of a similar brittle coating/ductile substrate system (WC/12Co coating/1020 low carbon steel substrate) and is found to be comparable. The proposed fracture toughness model best describes the experimental observation of cracking/fracture behavior of brittle coating/ductile substrate systems under indentation, compared with other existing models, which can be utilized to assess the fracture toughness of these coating/substrate systems. The developed approach makes a significant improvement in the existing fracture mechanics methods for fracture toughness assessment of brittle coating/ductile substrate systems.

  5. An alternative database approach for management of SNOMED CT and improved patient data queries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, W Scott; Pedersen, Jay; McClay, James C; Rao, Praveen; Bastola, Dhundy; Campbell, James R

    2015-10-01

    statistics generated using the graph database were identical to those using validated methods. Patient queries produced identical patient count results to the Oracle RDBMS with comparable times. Database queries involving defining attributes of SNOMED CT concepts were possible with the graph DB. The same queries could not be directly performed with the Oracle RDBMS representation of the patient data and required the creation and use of external terminology services. Further, queries of undefined depth were successful in identifying unknown relationships between patient cohorts. The results of this study supported the hypothesis that a patient database built upon and around the semantic model of SNOMED CT was possible. The model supported queries that leveraged all aspects of the SNOMED CT logical model to produce clinically relevant query results. Logical disjunction and negation queries were possible using the data model, as well as, queries that extended beyond the structural IS_A hierarchy of SNOMED CT to include queries that employed defining attribute-values of SNOMED CT concepts as search parameters. As medical terminologies, such as SNOMED CT, continue to expand, they will become more complex and model consistency will be more difficult to assure. Simultaneously, consumers of data will increasingly demand improvements to query functionality to accommodate additional granularity of clinical concepts without sacrificing speed. This new line of research provides an alternative approach to instantiating and querying patient data represented using advanced computable clinical terminologies. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. A Collaborative Learning Network Approach to Improvement: The CUSP Learning Network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weaver, Sallie J; Lofthus, Jennifer; Sawyer, Melinda; Greer, Lee; Opett, Kristin; Reynolds, Catherine; Wyskiel, Rhonda; Peditto, Stephanie; Pronovost, Peter J

    2015-04-01

    Collaborative improvement networks draw on the science of collaborative organizational learning and communities of practice to facilitate peer-to-peer learning, coaching, and local adaption. Although significant improvements in patient safety and quality have been achieved through collaborative methods, insight regarding how collaborative networks are used by members is needed. Improvement Strategy: The Comprehensive Unit-based Safety Program (CUSP) Learning Network is a multi-institutional collaborative network that is designed to facilitate peer-to-peer learning and coaching specifically related to CUSP. Member organizations implement all or part of the CUSP methodology to improve organizational safety culture, patient safety, and care quality. Qualitative case studies developed by participating members examine the impact of network participation across three levels of analysis (unit, hospital, health system). In addition, results of a satisfaction survey designed to evaluate member experiences were collected to inform network development. Common themes across case studies suggest that members found value in collaborative learning and sharing strategies across organizational boundaries related to a specific improvement strategy. The CUSP Learning Network is an example of network-based collaborative learning in action. Although this learning network focuses on a particular improvement methodology-CUSP-there is clear potential for member-driven learning networks to grow around other methods or topic areas. Such collaborative learning networks may offer a way to develop an infrastructure for longer-term support of improvement efforts and to more quickly diffuse creative sustainment strategies.

  7. The development of a consensus definition for healthcare improvement science (HIS) in seven European countries: A consensus methods approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macrae, Rhoda; Lillo-Crespo, Manuel; Rooney, Kevin D

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Introduction There is a limited body of research in the field of healthcare improvement science (HIS). Quality improvement and ‘change making’ should become an intrinsic part of everyone’s job, every day in all parts of the healthcare system. The lack of theoretical grounding may partly explain the minimal transfer of health research into health policy. Methods This article seeks to present the development of the definition for healthcare improvement science. A consensus method approach was adopted with a two-stage Delphi process, expert panel and consensus group techniques. A total of 18 participants were involved in the expert panel and consensus group, and 153 answers were analysed as a part of the Delphi survey. Participants were researchers, educators and healthcare professionals from Scotland, Slovenia, Spain, Italy, England, Poland, and Romania. Results A high level of consensus was achieved for the broad definition in the 2nd Delphi iteration (86%). The final definition was agreed on by the consensus group: ‘Healthcare improvement science is the generation of knowledge to cultivate change and deliver person-centred care that is safe, effective, efficient, equitable and timely. It improves patient outcomes, health system performance and population health.’ Conclusions The process of developing a consensus definition revealed different understandings of healthcare improvement science between the participants. Having a shared consensus definition of healthcare improvement science is an important step forward, bringing about a common understanding in order to advance the professional education and practice of healthcare improvement science. PMID:28289467

  8. A combined modulated feedback and temperature compensation approach to improve bias drift of a closed-loop MEMS capacitive accelerometer

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ming-jun MA; Zhong-he JIN‡; Hui-jie ZHU

    2015-01-01

    The bias drift of a micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) accelerometer suffers from the 1/f noise and the tem-perature effect. For massive applications, the bias drift urgently needs to be improved. Conventional methods often cannot ad-dress the 1/f noise and temperature effect in one architecture. In this paper, a combined approach on closed-loop architecture modification is proposed to minimize the bias drift. The modulated feedback approach is used to isolate the 1/f noise that exists in the conventional direct feedback approach. Then a common mode signal is created and added into the closed loop on the basis of modulated feedback architecture, to compensate for the temperature drift. With the combined approach, the bias instability is improved to less than 13 µg, and the drift of the Allan variance result is reduced to 17 µg at 100 s of the integration time. The temperature coefficient is reduced from 4.68 to 0.1 mg/°C. The combined approach could be useful for many other closed-loop accelerometers.

  9. Using auxiliary information to improve wildlife disease surveillance when infected animals are not detected: a Bayesian approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heisey, Dennis M.; Jennelle, Christopher S.; Russell, Robin E.; Walsh, Daniel P.

    2014-01-01

    There are numerous situations in which it is important to determine whether a particular disease of interest is present in a free-ranging wildlife population. However adequate disease surveillance can be labor-intensive and expensive and thus there is substantial motivation to conduct it as efficiently as possible. Surveillance is often based on the assumption of a simple random sample, but this can almost always be improved upon if there is auxiliary information available about disease risk factors. We present a Bayesian approach to disease surveillance when auxiliary risk information is available which will usually allow for substantial improvements over simple random sampling. Others have employed risk weights in surveillance, but this can result in overly optimistic statements regarding freedom from disease due to not accounting for the uncertainty in the auxiliary information; our approach remedies this. We compare our Bayesian approach to a published example of risk weights applied to chronic wasting disease in deer in Colorado, and we also present calculations to examine when uncertainty in the auxiliary information has a serious impact on the risk weights approach. Our approach allows “apples-to-apples” comparisons of surveillance efficiencies between units where heterogeneous samples were collected

  10. Improved system blind identification based on second-order cyclostationary statistics: A group delay approach

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    P V S Giridhar; S V Narasimhan

    2000-04-01

    An improved system blind identification method based on second-order cyclostationary statistics and the properties of group delay, has been proposed. This is achieved by applying a correction to the estimated phase (by the spectral correlation density of the system output) for the poles, in the group delay domain. The results indicate a significant improvement in system blind identification, in terms of root mean square error. Depending upon the signal-to-noise ratio, the improvement in percentage normalized mean square error ranges between 20 and 50%.

  11. A Value Management Approach to Improving Quality (ICP/JOU-05-00825)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    James R. Wixson; Howard Stromberg (Because he has an NT Account)

    2005-07-01

    In October 2001, the Department of Energy’s, Office of Price-Anderson Enforcement determined that the continuous improvement aspect of the INEEL Quality Assurance Program was inadequate. At the request of the INEEL Senior Management, a Quality Assurance Operations (QAO) Task Team was identified and requested to review the INEEL practices to determine whether the INEEL was performing the activities that are required for Quality Implementation. The team consisted of INEEL managers from Operations, Quality Assurance, Document and Records Management, Construction Services, Radiological Control, and Engineering. FAST modeling combined with other analytical techniques were used to identify areas for improvement and resolve the issues related to inadequate continuous improvement efforts.

  12. THE IMPACT OF ACTIVE LEARNING APPROACH ON IMPROVING THE READING SKILLS IN NATIVE LANGUAGE TEACHING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmet Güneyli

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available In this research, the effectiveness of active learning approach in native language education has been emphasized. This research is an experimental one that is used by Turkish Teaching organized by active learning approach for determining learning levels of the students concerning their reading comprehension skills. Data have been obtained by utilizing “Turkish Reading Comprehension Skill Test”. The research was conducted at fifth class level in ªehit Tuncer and Geçitkale primary schools by getting permission from Ministry of Education and it lasted for fourteen weeks in the second term of 2005-2006 education semester. In Turkish teaching, there is a meaningful difference in favor of the active learning group between the experiment group’s (that active learning approach is applied to and control group’s (that traditional method is applied to average of the reading comprehension skill points. The results of the study indicated that the active learning approach is more effective than the traditional approach.

  13. Posterior subscapular dissection: An improved approach to the brachial plexus for human anatomy students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hager, Shaun; Backus, Timothy Charles; Futterman, Bennett; Solounias, Nikos; Mihlbachler, Matthew C

    2014-05-01

    Students of human anatomy are required to understand the brachial plexus, from the proximal roots extending from spinal nerves C5 through T1, to the distal-most branches that innervate the shoulder and upper limb. However, in human cadaver dissection labs, students are often instructed to dissect the brachial plexus using an antero-axillary approach that incompletely exposes the brachial plexus. This approach readily exposes the distal segments of the brachial plexus but exposure of proximal and posterior segments require extensive dissection of neck and shoulder structures. Therefore, the proximal and posterior segments of the brachial plexus, including the roots, trunks, divisions, posterior cord and proximally branching peripheral nerves often remain unobserved during study of the cadaveric shoulder and brachial plexus. Here we introduce a subscapular approach that exposes the entire brachial plexus, with minimal amount of dissection or destruction of surrounding structures. Lateral retraction of the scapula reveals the entire length of the brachial plexus in the subscapular space, exposing the brachial plexus roots and other proximal segments. Combining the subscapular approach with the traditional antero-axillary approach allows students to observe the cadaveric brachial plexus in its entirety. Exposure of the brachial dissection in the subscapular space requires little time and is easily incorporated into a preexisting anatomy lab curriculum without scheduling additional time for dissection. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  14. A probabilistic scenario approach for developing improved Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD+ baselines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Malika Virah-Sawmy

    2015-07-01

    By generating robust probabilistic baseline scenarios, exponential smoothing models can facilitate the effectiveness of REDD+ payments, support a more efficient allocation of scarce conservation resources, and improve our understanding of effective forest conservation investments, also beyond REDD+.

  15. The urban harvest approach as framework and planning tool for improved water and resource cycles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leusbrock, I.; Nanninga, T.A.; Lieberg, K.; Agudelo, C.; Keesman, K.J.; Zeeman, G.; Rijnaarts, H.

    2015-01-01

    Water and resource availability in sufficient quantity and quality for anthropogenic needs represents one of the main challenges in the coming decades. To prepare for upcoming challenges such as increased urbanization and climate change related consequences, innovative and improved resource

  16. An analysis of the aircraft engine Component Improvement Program (CIP) : a life cycle cost approach

    OpenAIRE

    Borer, Chris Joseph

    1990-01-01

    Approved for public release; distribution unlimited. Increasing budgetary constraints have prompted actions to reduce the maintenance cost of current naval aircraft. This thesis examines the Aircraft Engine Component Improvement Program (CIP), its impact on these cost at the organizational and intermediate levels of maintenance, and savings from these improvements. The objectives of the research were to identify current life cycle cost (LCC) models used by the Navy andor the other services...

  17. Model-based approaches to support process improvement in complex product development

    OpenAIRE

    Wynn, David C.

    2007-01-01

    The performance of product development processes is important to the commercial success of new products. The improvement of these processes is thus a strategic imperative for many engineering companies — the aero-engine is one example of a complex product for which market pressures necessitate ever-shorter development times. This thesis argues that process modelling and simulation can support the improvement of complex product development processes. A literature review identified that desi...

  18. Improving accuracy for identifying related PubMed queries by an integrated approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Zhiyong; Wilbur, W John

    2009-10-01

    PubMed is the most widely used tool for searching biomedical literature online. As with many other online search tools, a user often types a series of multiple related queries before retrieving satisfactory results to fulfill a single information need. Meanwhile, it is also a common phenomenon to see a user type queries on unrelated topics in a single session. In order to study PubMed users' search strategies, it is necessary to be able to automatically separate unrelated queries and group together related queries. Here, we report a novel approach combining both lexical and contextual analyses for segmenting PubMed query sessions and identifying related queries and compare its performance with the previous approach based solely on concept mapping. We experimented with our integrated approach on sample data consisting of 1539 pairs of consecutive user queries in 351 user sessions. The prediction results of 1396 pairs agreed with the gold-standard annotations, achieving an overall accuracy of 90.7%. This demonstrates that our approach is significantly better than the previously published method. By applying this approach to a one day query log of PubMed, we found that a significant proportion of information needs involved more than one PubMed query, and that most of the consecutive queries for the same information need are lexically related. Finally, the proposed PubMed distance is shown to be an accurate and meaningful measure for determining the contextual similarity between biological terms. The integrated approach can play a critical role in handling real-world PubMed query log data as is demonstrated in our experiments.

  19. 2nd Skin approach to zero energy rental properties: Occupancy patterns to improve energy simulation

    OpenAIRE

    Guerra Santin, O.; Silvester, S.; Konstantinou, T.

    2015-01-01

    A number of second skin solutions have been developed in recent years to solve the problem of large scale renovation of housing. The 2ndSkin approach presented in this paper is currently under development by a consortium of academic and industry partners in the Netherlands. The objective of the 2ndSkin project is to develop a strategy for an integrated and effective renovation solution. This approach aims at developing a market-ready zero-energy solution that can be applied to rental apartmen...

  20. A futuristic approach towards interface layer modifications for improved efficiency in inverted organic solar cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tiwari, J. P., E-mail: jai-ti2002@yahoo.com, E-mail: tiwarijp@mail.nplindia.org; Ali, Farman; Sharma, Abhishek; Chand, Suresh [Physics of Energy Harvesting Division (Organic and Hybrid Solar Cell Group), CSIR-National Physical Laboratory, CSIR-Network of Institutes for Solar Energy (NISE), Dr. K. S. Krishnan Marg, New Delhi 110012 (India); Pillai, Sriraj; Parakh, Sonal [Physics of Energy Harvesting Division (Organic and Hybrid Solar Cell Group), CSIR-National Physical Laboratory, CSIR-Network of Institutes for Solar Energy (NISE), Dr. K. S. Krishnan Marg, New Delhi 110012 (India); Department of Physics, Delhi Technological University, Bawana Road, Delhi 110042 (India)

    2014-01-27

    Inverted polymer Solar Cells of the classical poly (3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT):(6,6)-phenyl-C{sub 61}butyric acid methyl ester (PC{sub 61}BM) blend on indium tin oxide substrates were fabricated, which shows improved device performance, by using a facile solution–processed ZnO-polyelectrolytes [poly (diallyldimethylammonium chloride) (PDADMAC), Poly (acrylic acid sodium salt) (PAS), poly (4-styrenesulfonic acid) (PSS), and Polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP)] nanocomposite as a cathode interface layer compared to devices using pristine ZnO as cathode buffer layer in ambient conditions. The devices with different combinations of polyelectrolyte with ZnO show different improvements in the device efficiency. The combinations of ZnO with PVP and PDADMAC show highest amount of improvements in the efficiency by a factor of ∼17–19. The improvement of the efficiency may be due to various phenomena, such as the passivation of ZnO surface as well as bulk traps, work function modification, improved energy level alignment, improved electronic coupling of the inorganic/organic interface, improved light harvesting, and decrease of surface as well as bulk charge recombination in the device. The introduction of polyelectrolyte into ZnO inhibits the aggregation of ZnO nanoparticles yielding the large area ZnO nanoclusters; and hence, forming the uniform film of ZnO resulting in the modifications of morphology as well as electronic structure of ZnO-polyelectrolyte nano-composite favouring better electronic coupling between cathode and active layer and hence enhancing the current and, consequently, the efficiency. This simple low temperature ZnO-polyelectrolyte nanocomposite based protocol proposed for cathode interface layer modification may be very much useful for roll to roll industrial manufacturing of organic solar cells.