Information and Communication Technology (ICT) has made information access easier and affordable. Academic research has also benefited from this, with online journals and academic resource readily available by the click of a button. However, there are limited ways of assessing and controlling the quality of the academic research mostly in public institution. Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa with a significant number of universities and young population. The quality of knowledge created by academic researchers, however, needs to be evaluated due to the high number of predatory journals published by academia. The purpose of this qualitative study is to look at the knowledge creation, acquisition, and assimilation process by academic researchers in public universities in Nigeria. Qualitative research will be carried out using in-depth interviews and observations. Academic researchers will be interviewed and absorptive capacity theory will be used as the theoretical framework to guide the research. The findings from this study should help understand the impact of ICT on the knowledge creation process in academic research and to understand how ICT can affect the quality of knowledge produced by researchers. The findings from this study should help add value to the existing body of knowledge on the quality of academic research, especially in Africa where there is limited availability of quality academic research. As this study is limited to Nigerian universities, the outcome may not be generalized to other developing countries.
Building materials selection is critical for the sustainability of any project. The choice of building materials has a huge impact on the built environment and cost of projects. Building materials emit huge amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) due to the use of cement as a basic component in the manufacturing process and as a binder, which harms our environment. Energy consumption from buildings has increased in the last few years; a huge amount of energy is being wasted from using unsustainable building and finishing materials, as well as from the process of heating and cooling of buildings. In addition, the construction sector in Egypt is taking a good portion of the economy; however, there is a lack of awareness of buildings environmental impacts on the built environment. Using advanced building materials and different wall systems can help in reducing heat consumption, the project’s initial and long-term costs, and minimizing the environmental impacts. Red Bricks is one of the materials that are being used widely in Egypt. There are many other types of bricks such as Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (AAC); however, the use of Red Bricks is dominating the construction industry due to its affordability and availability. This research focuses on the New Egyptian Administrative Capital as a case study to investigate the potential of the influence of using different wall systems such as AAC on the project’s cost and the environment. The aim of this research is to conduct a comparative analysis between the traditional and most commonly used bricks in Egypt, which is Red Bricks, and AAC wall systems. Through an economic and environmental study, the difference between the two wall systems will be justified to encourage the utilization of uncommon techniques in the construction industry to build more affordable, energy efficient and sustainable buildings. The significance of this research is to show the potential of using AAC in the construction industry and its positive influences. The study analyzes the factors associated with choosing suitable building materials for different projects according to the need and criteria of each project and its nature without harming the environment and wasting materials that could be saved or recycled. The New Egyptian Administrative Capital is considered as the country’s new heart, where ideas regarding energy savings and environmental benefits are taken into consideration. Meaning that, Egypt is taking good steps to move towards more sustainable construction. According to the analysis and site visits, there is a potential in reducing the initial costs of buildings by 12.1% and saving energy by using different techniques up to 25%. Interviews with the mega structures project engineers and managers reveal that they are more open to introducing sustainable building materials that will help in saving the environment and moving towards green construction as well as to studying more effective techniques for energy conservation.
The natural environment is in need for an urgent rescue due to dilapidation and recession of resources. Passive design strategies have proven to be one of the effective ways to reduce CO2 emissions and to improve building performance. On the other hand, there is a huge drop in material availability due to poor recycling culture. Consequently, building waste pose environmental hazard due to unrecycled building materials from construction and deconstruction. Buildings are seen to be material banks for a circular economy, therefore incorporating circular economy into passive housing will not only safe guide the climate but also improve resource efficiency. The study focuses on incorporating a circular economy in passive design strategies for an affordable energy and resource efficient residential building in Nigeria. Carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration is still on the increase as buildings are responsible for a significant amount of this emission globally. Therefore, prompt measures need to be taken to combat the effect of global warming and associated threats. Nigeria is rapidly growing in human population, resources on the other hand have receded greatly, and there is an abrupt need for recycling even in the built environment. It is necessary that Nigeria responds to these challenges effectively and efficiently considering building resource and energy. Passive design strategies were assessed using simulations to obtain qualitative and quantitative data which were inferred to case studies as it relates to the Nigeria climate. Building materials were analysed using the ReSOLVE model in order to explore possible recycling phase. This provided relevant information and strategies to illustrate the possibility of circular economy in passive buildings. The study offers an alternative approach, as it is the general principle for the reworking of an economy on ecological lines in passive housing and by closing material loops in circular economy.
Iraq is a middle income country where the road safety issue is considered one of the leading causes of deaths. To control the road risk issue, the Iraqi Ministry of Planning, General Statistical Organization started to organise a collection system of traffic accidents data with details related to their causes and severity. These data are published as an annual report. In this paper, a review of the available crash data in Iraq will be presented. The available data represent the rate of accidents in aggregated level and classified according to their types, road users’ details, and crash severity, type of vehicles, causes and number of causalities. The review is according to the types of models used in road safety studies and research, and according to the required road safety data in the road constructions tasks. The available data are also compared with the road safety dataset published in the United Kingdom as an example of developed country. It is concluded that the data in Iraq are suitable for descriptive and exploratory models, aggregated level comparison analysis, and evaluation and monitoring the progress of the overall traffic safety performance. However, important traffic safety studies require disaggregated level of data and details related to the factors of the likelihood of traffic crashes. Some studies require spatial geographic details such as the location of the accidents which is essential in ranking the roads according to their level of safety, and name the most dangerous roads in Iraq which requires tactic plan to control this issue. Global Road safety agencies interested in solve this problem in low and middle-income countries have designed road safety assessment methodologies which are basing on the road attributes data only. Therefore, in this research it is recommended to use one of these methodologies.
Selenium (Se) is an essential micro-nutrient for human and animals but it is highly toxic. Its organic compounds play an important role in biochemistry and nutrition of the cells. Concentration levels of this element in the different regions of the world vary considerably. This study aimed to compare the availability and levels of the Se in some rural areas of the Balkan Peninsula and relationship with the concentrations of other trace elements. For this purpose soil samples and wheat grains from different regions of Bulgaria, Serbia, Nord Macedonia, Romania, and Greece situated far from large industrial centers have been analyzed. The main methods for their determination were the atomic spectral techniques – atomic absorption and plasma atomic emission. As a result of this study, data on microelements levels from the main grain-producing regions of the Balkan Peninsula were determined and systematized. The presented results confirm the low levels of Se in this region: 0.222– 0.962 mg.kg-1 in soils and 0.001 - 0.005 mg.kg-1 in wheat grains and require measures to offset the effect of this deficiency.
In general, issues related to design and maintenance are considered in an independent manner. However, the decisions made in these two sets influence each other. The design for maintenance is considered an opportunity to optimize the life cycle cost of a product, particularly in the nuclear or aeronautical field, where maintenance expenses represent more than 60% of life cycle costs. The design of large-scale systems starts with product architecture, a choice of components in terms of cost, reliability, weight and other attributes, corresponding to the specifications. On the other hand, the design must take into account maintenance by improving, in particular, real-time monitoring of equipment through the integration of new technologies such as connected sensors and intelligent actuators. We noticed that different approaches used in the Design For Maintenance (DFM) methods are limited to the simultaneous characterization of the reliability and maintainability of a multi-component system. This article proposes a method of DFM that assists designers to propose dynamic maintenance for multi-component industrial systems. The term "dynamic" refers to the ability to integrate available monitoring data to adapt the maintenance decision in real time. The goal is to maximize the availability of the system at a given life cycle cost. This paper presents an approach for simultaneous optimization of the design and maintenance of multi-component systems. Here the design is characterized by four decision variables for each component (reliability level, maintainability level, redundancy level, and level of monitoring data). The maintenance is characterized by two decision variables (the dates of the maintenance stops and the maintenance operations to be performed on the system during these stops). The DFM model helps the designers choose technical solutions for the large-scale industrial products. Large-scale refers to the complex multi-component industrial systems and long life-cycle, such as trains, aircraft, etc. The method is based on a two-level hybrid algorithm for simultaneous optimization of design and maintenance, using genetic algorithms. The first level is to select a design solution for a given system that considers the life cycle cost and the reliability. The second level consists of determining a dynamic and optimal maintenance plan to be deployed for a design solution. This level is based on the Maintenance Free Operating Period (MFOP) concept, which takes into account the decision criteria such as, total reliability, maintenance cost and maintenance time. Depending on the life cycle duration, the desired availability, and the desired business model (sales or rental), this tool provides visibility of overall costs and optimal product architecture.
This paper presents the experimental design and needs justifications for a localized intelligent parking system (L-IPS), ideal for quasi-close communities with increasing vehicular volume that depends on limited or constant parking facilities. For a constant supply in parking facilities, the demand for an increasing vehicular volume could lead to poor time conservation or extended travel time, traffic congestion or impeded mobility, and safety issues. Increased negative environmental and economic externalities are other associated and consequent downsides of disparities in demand and supply. This L-IPS is designed using a microcontroller, ultrasonic sensors, LED indicators, such that the current status, in terms of parking spots availability, can be known from the main entrance to the community or a parking zone on a LCD screen. As an advanced traffic management system (ATMS), the L-IPS is designed to resolve aspects of infrastructure-to-driver (I2D) communication and parking detection issues. Thus, this L-IPS can act as a timesaver for users by helping them know the availability of parking spots. Providing on-time, informed routing, to a next preference or seamless moving to berth on the available spot on a proximate facility as the case may be. Its use could also increase safety and increase mobility, and fuel savings and costs, therefore, reducing negative environmental and economic externalities due to transportation systems.
A need exists to identify the sources of risks associated with the process automation systems within petrochemical companies or similar energy related industries. These companies use many different process automation technologies in its value chain. A crucial part of the process automation system is the information technology component featuring in the supervisory control layer. The ever-changing technology within the process automation layers and the rate at which it advances pose a risk to safe and predictable automation system performance. The age of the automation equipment also provides challenges to the operations and maintenance managers of the plant due to obsolescence and unavailability of spare parts. The main objective of this research was to determine the risk sources associated with the equipment that is part of the process automation systems. A secondary objective was to establish whether technology managers and technicians were aware of the risks and share the same viewpoint on the importance of the risks associated with automation systems. A conceptual model for risk sources of automation systems was formulated from models and frameworks in literature. This model comprised six categories of risk which forms the basis for identifying specific risks. This model was used to develop a questionnaire that was sent to 172 instrument technicians and technology managers in the company to obtain primary data. 75 completed and useful responses were received. These responses were analyzed statistically to determine the highest risk sources and to determine whether there was difference in opinion between technology managers and technicians. The most important risks that were revealed in this study are: 1) the lack of skilled technicians, 2) integration capability of third-party system software, 3) reliability of the process automation hardware, 4) excessive costs pertaining to performing maintenance and migrations on process automation systems, and 5) requirements of having third-party communication interfacing compatibility as well as real-time communication networks.
In recent years the increasing use of fossil fuels has led to various environmental problems including urban pollution, ozone layer depletion and acid rains. Moreover, with the increased number of industrial centers and higher consumption of these fuels, the end point of the fossil energy reserves has become more evident. Considering the environmental pollution caused by fossil fuels and their limited availability, renewable sources can be considered as the main substitute for non-renewable resources. One of these resources is the Organic Rankine Cycles (ORCs). These cycles while having high safety, have low maintenance requirements. Combining the ORCs with other systems, such as ejector and reheater will increase overall cycle efficiency. In this study, ejector and reheater are used to improve the thermal efficiency (ηth), exergy efficiency (η_ex) and net output power (w_net); therefore, the ORCs with reheater (RORCs) are proposed. A computational program has been developed to calculate the thermodynamic parameters required in Engineering Equations Solver (EES). In this program, the analysis of the first and second law in RORC is conducted, and a comparison is made between them and the ORCs with Ejector (EORC). R245fa is selected as the working fluid and water is chosen as low temperature heat source with a temperature of 95 °C and a mass transfer rate of 1 kg/s. The pressures of the second evaporator and reheater are optimized in terms of maximum exergy efficiency. The environment is at 298.15 k and at 101.325 kpa. The results indicate that the thermodynamic parameters in the RORC have improved compared to EORC.
With the availability of diverse printed, electronic literature and web sites on medical and health related information, it is impossible for the medical professional to get the information he seeks in the shortest possible time. For all these problems information literacy is the only solution. Thus, information literacy is recognized as an important aspect of medical education. In the present study, an attempt has been made to know the information literacy skills of the faculty and students at medical colleges of Haryana, Punjab and Chandigarh. The scope of the study was confined to the 12 selected medical colleges of three States (Haryana, Punjab, and Chandigarh). The findings of the study were based on the data collected through 1018 questionnaires filled by the respondents of the medical colleges. It was found that Online Medical Websites (such as WebMD, eMedicine and Mayo Clinic etc.) were frequently used by 63.43% of the respondents of Chandigarh which is slightly more than Haryana (61%) and Punjab (55.65%). As well, 30.86% of the respondents of Chandigarh, 27.41% of Haryana and 27.05% of Punjab were familiar with the controlled vocabulary tool; 25.14% respondents of Chandigarh, 23.80% of Punjab, 23.17% of Haryana were familiar with the Boolean operators; 33.05% of the respondents of Punjab, 28.19% of Haryana and 25.14% of Chandigarh were familiar with the use and importance of the keywords while searching an electronic database; and 51.43% of the respondents of Chandigarh, 44.52% of Punjab and 36.29% of Haryana were able to make effective use of the retrieved information. For accessing information in electronic format, 47.74% of the respondents rated their skills high, while the majority of respondents (76.13%) were unfamiliar with the basic search technique i.e. Boolean operator used for searching information in an online database. On the basis of the findings, it was suggested that a comprehensive training program based on medical professionals information needs should be organized frequently. Furthermore, it was also suggested that information literacy may be included as a subject in the health science curriculum so as to make the medical professionals information literate and independent lifelong learners.
Virtual Reality (VR) content creation is a complex and an expensive process, which requires multi-disciplinary teams of content creators. Grant schemes from technology companies help media organisations to explore the VR potential in journalism and factual storytelling. Media organisations try to do as much as they can in-house, but they may outsource due to time constraints and skill availability. Journalists, game developers, sound designers and creative artists work together and bring in new cultures of work. This study explores the collaborative experimental nature of VR content creation, through tracing every actor involved in the process and examining their perceptions of the VR work. The study builds on Actor Network Theory (ANT), which decomposes phenomena into their basic elements and traces the interrelations among them. Therefore, the researcher conducted 22 semi-structured interviews with VR content creators between November 2017 and April 2018. Purposive and snowball sampling techniques allowed the researcher to recruit fact-based VR content creators from production studios and media organisations, as well as freelancers. Interviews lasted up to three hours, and they were a mix of Skype calls and in-person interviews. Participants consented for their interviews to be recorded, and for their names to be revealed in the study. The researcher coded interviews’ transcripts in Nvivo software, looking for key themes that correspond with the research questions. The study revealed that VR content creators must be adaptive to change, open to learn and comfortable with mistakes. The VR content creation process is very iterative because VR has no established work flow or visual grammar. Multi-disciplinary VR team members often speak different languages making it hard to communicate. However, adaptive content creators perceive VR work as a fun experience and an opportunity to learn. The traditional sense of competition and the strive for information exclusivity are now replaced by a strong drive for knowledge sharing. VR content creators are open to share their methods of work and their experiences. They target to build a collaborative network that aims to harness VR technology for journalism and factual storytelling. Indeed, VR is instilling collaborative and experimental cultures in journalism.
e-Government mobile applications provide an extension for effective e-government services in today’s omniconnected world. They constitute part of m-government platforms. This study explores the usefulness, availability, discoverability and maturity of such applications. While this study impacts theory by addressing a relatively lacking area, it impacts practice more. The outcomes of this study suggest valuable recommendations for practitioners-developers of e-government applications. The methodology followed is to examine a large number of e-government smartphone applications. The focus is on applications available at the Google Play Store. Moreover, the study investigates applications published on government portals of a number of countries. A sample of 15 countries is researched. The results show a diversity in the level of discoverability, development, maturity, and usage of smartphone apps dedicated for use of e-government services. It was found that there are major issues in discovering e-government applications on both the Google Play Store and as-well-as on local government portals. The study found that only a fraction of mobile government applications was published on the Play Store. Only 19% of apps were multilingual, and 43% were developed by third parties including private individuals. Further analysis was made, and important recommendations are suggested in this paper for a better utilization of e-government smartphone applications. These recommendations will result in better discoverability, maturity, and usefulness of e-government applications.
Peri-urban agriculture in Jos Nigeria serves as a major means of livelihood for both urban and peri-urban poor, and constitutes huge commercial inclination with a target market that has spanned beyond Plateau State. Yet, the sustainability of this sector is threatened by intensive application of urban refuse ash contaminated with heavy metals, as a result of the highly heterogeneous materials used in ash production. Hence, this research aimed to understand the current fertilizer employed by farmers, their perception and acceptability in utilization of household sewage sludge for agricultural purposes and their capacity in mitigating risks associated with such practice. Mixed methods approach was adopted, and data collection tools used include survey questionnaire, focus group discussion with farmers, participants and field observation. The study identified that farmers maintain a complex mixture of organic and chemical fertilizers, with mixture composition that is dependent on fertilizer availability and affordability. Also, farmers have decreased the rate of utilization of urban refuse ash due to labor and increased logistic cost and are keen to utilize household sewage sludge for soil fertility improvement but are mainly constrained by accessibility of this waste product. Nevertheless, farmers near to sewage disposal points have commenced utilization of household sewage sludge for improving soil fertility. Farmers were knowledgeable on composting but find their strategic method of dewatering and sun drying more convenient. Irrigation farmers were not enthusiastic for treatment, as they desired both water and sludge. Secondly, household sewage sludge observed in the field is heterogeneous due to nearness between its disposal point and that of urban refuse, which raises concern for possible cross-contamination of pollutants and also portrays lack of extension guidance as regards to treatment and management of household sewage sludge for agricultural purposes. Hence, farmers concerns need to be addressed, particularly in providing extension advice and establishment of decentralized household sewage sludge collection centers, for continuous availability of liquid and concentrated sludge. Urgent need is also required for the Federal Government of Nigeria to increase commitment towards empowering her subsidiaries for efficient discharge of corporate responsibilities.
Non-Timber Forest Products (NTFPs) have attracted substantial interest in the recent years with the increasing recognition that these can provide essential community needs for improved and diversified rural livelihood and support the objectives of biodiversity conservation. Nevertheless, various challenges are witnessed in their sustainable harvest and management. Assuming that sustainable management with community stewardship can offer one of the solutions to existing challenges, the study assesses the linkages between NTFPs and rural livelihood in Lamabagar village of Dolakha, Nepal. The major objective was to document the status of NTFPs and their contributions in households of Lamabagar. For status documentation, vegetation sampling was done using systematic random sampling technique. 30 plots of 10 m × 10 m were laid down in six parallel transect lines at horizontal distance of 160 m in two different community forests. A structured questionnaire survey was conducted in 76 households (excluding non-response rate) using stratified random sampling technique for contribution analysis. Likewise, key informant interview and focus group discussions were also conducted for data triangulations. 36 different NTFPs were recorded from the vegetation sample in two community forests of which 50% were used for medicinal purposes. The other uses include fodder, religious value, and edible fruits and vegetables. Species like Juniperus indica, Daphne bholua Aconitum spicatum, and Lyonia ovalifolia were frequently used for trade as a source of income, which was sold in local market. The protected species like Taxus wallichiana and Neopicrorhiza scrophulariiflora were also recorded in the area for which the trade is prohibited. The protection of these species urgently needs community stewardship. More than half of the surveyed households (55%) were depending on NTFPs for their daily uses, other than economic purpose whereas 45% of them sold those products in the market directly or in the form of local handmade products as a source of livelihood. NTFPs were the major source of primary health curing agents especially for the poor and unemployed people in the study area. Hence, the NTFPs contributed to livelihood under three different categories: subsistence, supplement income and emergency support, depending upon the economic status of the households. Although the status of forest improved after handover to the user group, the availability of valuable medicinal herbs like Rhododendron anthopogon, Swertia nervosa, Neopicrorhiza scrophulariiflora, and Aconitum spicatum were declining. Inadequacy of technology, lack of easy transport access, and absence of good market facility were the major limitations for external trade of NTFPs in the study site. It was observed that people were interested towards conservation only if they could get some returns: economic in terms of rural settlements. Thus, the study concludes that NTFPs could contribute rural livelihood and support conservation objectives only if local communities are provided with the easy access of technology, market and capital.
Biopolymers are popular in many areas, like petrochemicals, food industry and agriculture due to their favorable properties like environment-friendly, availability, and cost. In this study, a biopolymer gum Arabic was used to find its effect on the pressure drop at various concentrations (100 ppm – 300 ppm) with various Reynolds numbers (10000 – 45000). A rheological study was also done by using the same concentrations to find the effect of the shear rate on the shear viscosity. Experiments were performed to find the effect of injection of gum Arabic directly near the boundary layer and to investigate its effect on the maximum possible drag reduction. Experiments were performed on a test section having i.d of 19.50 mm and length of 3045 mm. The polymer solution was injected from the top of the test section by using a peristaltic pump. The concentration of the polymer solution and the Reynolds number were used as parameters to get maximum possible drag reduction. Water was circulated through a centrifugal pump having a maximum 3000 rpm and the flow rate was measured by using rotameter. Results were validated by using Virk's maximum drag reduction asymptote. A maximum drag reduction of 62.15% was observed with the maximum concentration of gum Arabic, 300 ppm. The solution was circulated in the closed loop to find the effect of degradation of polymers with a number of cycles on the drag reduction percentage. It was observed that the injection of the polymer solution in the boundary layer was showing better results than premixed solutions.
Construction Industry has been evolving since the development of Building Information Modelling (BIM). This technological process is unstoppable; it is out to the market with remarkable case studies of solving the long industry’s history of fragmentation. This industry has been changing over time; United States has recorded the most significant development in construction digitalization, Australia, United Kingdom and some other developed nations are also amongst promoters of BIM process and its development. Recently, a developing country like China and Malaysia are keying into the industry’s digital shift, while very little move is seen in South Africa whose development is considered higher and perhaps leader in the digital transition amongst the African countries. To authors’ best knowledge, Nigerian construction industry has never engaged in BIM discussions hence has no attention at national level. Consequently, Nigeria has no “Noteworthy BIM publications.” Decision makers and key stakeholders need to be informed on the current trend of the industry’s development (BIM in specific) and the opportunities of adopting this digitalization trend in relation to the identified challenges. BIM concept can be traced mostly in Architectural practices than engineering practices in Nigeria. A superficial BIM practice is found to be at organisational level only and operating a model based - “BIM stage 1.” Research to adopting this innovation has received very little attention. This piece of work is literature review based, aimed at exploring BIM in Nigeria and its prospects. The exploration reveals limitations in the literature availability as to extensive research in the development of BIM in the country. Numerous challenges were noticed including building collapse, inefficiencies, cost overrun and late project delivery. BIM has potentials to overcome the above challenges and even beyond. Low level of BIM adoption with reasonable level of awareness is noticed. However, lack of policy and guideline as well as serious lack of experts in the field are amongst the major barriers to BIM adoption. The industry needs to embrace BIM to possibly compete with its global counterpart.
Concept of knowledge is discovered from conducted study for successive Competition in Sri Lankan Non-State Higher Educational Institutes. The Concept discovered out of collected Knowledge Management Practices from Emerald inside likewise reputed literatures and of Non-State Higher Educational sector. A test is conducted to reveal existences and its reason behind of these collected practices in Sri Lankan Non-State Higher Education Institutes. Further, unavailability of such study and uncertain on number of participants for data collection in the Sri Lankan context contributed selection of research method as qualitative method, which used attributes of Delphi Method to manage those likewise uncertainty. Data are collected under Dramaturgical Method, which contributes efficient usage of the Delphi method. Grounded theory is selected as data analysis techniques, which is conducted in intermixed discourse to manage different perspectives of data that are collected systematically through perspective and modified snowball sampling techniques. Data are then analysed using Grounded Theory Development Techniques in Intermix discourses to manage differences in Data. Consequently, Agreement in the results of Grounded theories and of finding in the Foreign Study is discovered in the analysis whereas present study conducted as Qualitative Research and The Foreign Study conducted as Quantitative Research. As such, the Present study widens the discovery in the Foreign Study. Further, having discovered reason behind of the existences, the Present result shows Concept for Knowledge from Sri Lankan Non-State sector to manage higher educational Institutes in successful manner.
Over the last few years, the amount of data available on the globe has been increased rapidly. This came up with the emergence of recent concepts, such as the big data and the Internet of Things, which have furnished a suitable solution for the availability of data all over the world. However, managing this massive amount of data remains a challenge due to their large verity of types and distribution. Therefore, locating the required file particularly from the first trial turned to be a not easy task, due to the large similarities of names for different files distributed on the web. Consequently, the accuracy and speed of search have been negatively affected. This work presents a method using Electroencephalography signals to locate the files based on their contents. Giving the concept of natural mind waves processing, this work analyses the mind wave signals of different people, analyzing them and extracting their most appropriate features using multi-objective metaheuristic algorithm, and then classifying them using artificial neural network to distinguish among files with similar names. The aim of this work is to provide the ability to find the files based on their contents using human thoughts only. Implementing this approach and testing it on real people proved its ability to find the desired files accurately within noticeably shorter time and retrieve them as a first choice for the user.
The use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in tertiary institutions by lecturers and students has become a necessity for the enhancement of quality teaching and learning. This study examined availability, accessibility and utilization of ICT in Teaching-Learning Islamic Studies in Colleges of Education, North-East, Nigeria. The study adopted multi-stage sampling technique, in which, five out of the eleven Colleges of Education (both Federal and State owned) were purposively selected for the study. Primary data was drawn from the respondents by the use of questionnaire, interviews and observations. The results of the study, generally, indicate that the availability and accessibility to ICT facilities in Colleges of Education in North-East, Nigeria, especially in teaching/learning delivery of Islamic studies were relatively inadequate and rare to lecturers and students. The study further reveals that the respondents’ level of utilization of ICT is low and only few computer packages and internet services were involved in the ICT utilization, which is yet to reach the real expected situation of the globalization and advancement in the application of ICT if compared to other parts of the world, as far as the teaching and learning of Islamic studies is concerned. Observations and conclusion were drawn from the findings and finally, recommendations on how to improve on ICT availability, accessibility and utilization in teaching/ learning were suggested.
Digital multimedia contents such as image, video, and audio can be tampered easily due to the availability of powerful editing softwares. Multimedia forensics is devoted to analyze these contents by using various digital forensic techniques in order to validate their authenticity. Digital image forensics is dedicated to investigate the reliability of digital images by analyzing the integrity of data and by reconstructing the historical information of an image related to its acquisition phase. In this paper, a survey is carried out on the forgery detection by considering the most recent and promising digital image forensic techniques.
Usability testing (UT) is one of the vital steps in the User-centred design (UCD) process when designing a product. In an e-commerce ecosystem, UT becomes primary as new products, features, and services are launched very frequently. And, there are losses attached to the company if an unusable and inefficient product is put out to market and is rejected by customers. This paper tries to answer why UT is important in the product life-cycle of an E-commerce ecosystem. Secondary user research was conducted to find out work patterns, development methods, type of stakeholders, and technology constraints, etc. of a typical E-commerce company. Qualitative user interviews were conducted with product managers and designers to find out the structure, project planning, product management method and role of the design team in a mid-level company. The paper tries to address the usual apprehensions of the company to inculcate UT within the team. As well, it stresses upon factors like monetary resources, lack of usability expert, narrow timelines, and lack of understanding of higher management as some primary reasons. Outsourcing UT to vendors is also very prevalent with mid-level e-commerce companies, but it has its own severe repercussions like very little team involvement, huge cost, misinterpretation of the findings, elongated timelines, and lack of empathy towards the customer, etc. The shortfalls of the unavailability of a UT process in place within the team and conducting UT through vendors are bad user experiences for customers while interacting with the product, badly designed products which are neither useful and nor utilitarian. As a result, companies see dipping conversions rates in apps and websites, huge bounce rates and increased uninstall rates. Thus, there was a need for a more lean UT system in place which could solve all these issues for the company. This paper highlights on optimizing the UT process with a collaborative method. The degree of optimization and structure of collaborative method is the highlight of this paper. Collaborative method of UT is one in which the centralised design team of the company takes for conducting and analysing the UT. The UT is usually a formative kind where designers take findings into account and uses in the ideation process. The success of collaborative method of UT is due to its ability to sync with the product management method employed by the company or team. The collaborative methods focus on engaging various teams (design, marketing, product, administration, IT, etc.) each with its own defined roles and responsibility in conducting a smooth UT with users In-house. The paper finally highlights the positive results of collaborative UT method after conducting more than 100 In-lab interviews with users across the different lines of businesses. Some of which are the improvement of interaction between stakeholders and the design team, empathy towards users, improved design iteration, better sanity check of design solutions, optimization of time and money, effective and efficient design solution. The future scope of collaborative UT is to make this method leaner, by reducing the number of days to complete the entire project starting from planning between teams to publishing the UT report.
Network security engineers work to keep services available all the time by handling intruder attacks. Intrusion Detection System (IDS) is one of the obtainable mechanisms that is used to sense and classify any abnormal actions. Therefore, the IDS must be always up to date with the latest intruder attacks signatures to preserve confidentiality, integrity, and availability of the services. The speed of the IDS is a very important issue as well learning the new attacks. This research work illustrates how the Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining (or Knowledge Discovery in Databases) KDD dataset is very handy for testing and evaluating different Machine Learning Techniques. It mainly focuses on the KDD preprocess part in order to prepare a decent and fair experimental data set. The J48, MLP, and Bayes Network classifiers have been chosen for this study. It has been proven that the J48 classifier has achieved the highest accuracy rate for detecting and classifying all KDD dataset attacks, which are of type DOS, R2L, U2R, and PROBE.
Underground mining is at the core of rapidly evolving metals and minerals sector due to the increasing mineral consumption globally. Even though the surface mines are still more abundant on earth, the scales of industry are slowly tipping towards underground mining due to rising depth and complexities of orebodies. Thus, the efficient and productive functioning of underground operations depends significantly on the synchronized performance of key elements such as operating site, mining equipment, manpower and mine services. Production drilling is the process of conducting long hole drilling for the purpose of charging and blasting these holes for the production of ore in underground metal mines. Thus, production drilling is the crucial segment in the underground metal mining value chain. This paper presents the process mapping tool to evaluate the production drilling process in the underground metal mining operation by dividing the given process into three segments namely Input, Process and Output. The three segments are further segregated into factors and sub-factors. As per the study, the major input factors crucial for the efficient functioning of production drilling process are power, drilling water, geotechnical support of the drilling site, skilled drilling operators, services installation crew, oils and drill accessories for drilling machine, survey markings at drill site, proper housekeeping, regular maintenance of drill machine, suitable transportation for reaching the drilling site and finally proper ventilation. The major outputs for the production drilling process are ore, waste as a result of dilution, timely reporting and investigation of unsafe practices, optimized process time and finally well fragmented blasted material within specifications set by the mining company. The paper also exhibits the drilling loss matrix, which is utilized to appraise the loss in planned production meters per day in a mine on account of availability loss in the machine due to breakdowns, underutilization of the machine and productivity loss in the machine measured in drilling meters per unit of percussion hour with respect to its planned productivity for the day. The given three losses would be essential to detect the bottlenecks in the process map of production drilling operation so as to instigate the action plan to suppress or prevent the causes leading to the operational performance deficiency. The given tool is beneficial to mine management to focus on the critical factors negatively impacting the production drilling operation and design necessary operational and maintenance strategies to mitigate them.
For decades, South Africa has been planning transportation systems from a supply, rather than a demand side, perspective. In terms of parking, this relates to requiring the minimum parking provision that is enforced by city officials. Newer insight is starting to indicate that South Africa needs to re-think this philosophy in light of a new policy environment that desires a different outcome. Urban policies have shifted from reliance on the private car for access, to employing a wide range of alternative modes. Car dominated travel is influenced by various parameters, of which the availability and location of parking plays a significant role. The question is therefore, what is the right strategy to achieve the desired transport outcomes for SA. The focus of this paper is used to assess this issue with regard to parking provision, and specifically at a tertiary institution. A parking audit was conducted at the Stellenbosch campus of Stellenbosch University, monitoring occupancy at all 60 parking areas, every hour during business hours over a five-day period. The data from this survey was compared with the prescribed number of parking bays according to the Stellenbosch Municipality zoning scheme (requiring a minimum of 0.4 bays per student). The analysis shows that by providing 0.09 bays per student, the maximum total daily occupation of all the parking areas did not exceed an 80% occupation rate. It is concluded that the prevailing parking standards are not supportive of the new urban and transport policy environment, but that it is extremely conservative from a practical demand point of view.
Mining industry is known for its appetite to spend sizeable capital on mine equipment. However, in the current scenario, the mining industry is challenged by daunting factors of non-uniform geological conditions, uneven ore grade, uncontrollable and volatile mineral commodity prices and the ever increasing quest to optimize the capital and operational costs. Thus, the role of equipment reliability and maintenance planning inherits a significant role in augmenting the equipment availability for the operation and in turn boosting the mine productivity. This paper presents the Risk Based Maintenance (RBM) planning conducted on mine loading equipment namely Load Haul Dumpers (LHDs) at Vedanta Resources Ltd subsidiary Hindustan Zinc Limited operated Sindesar Khurd Mines, an underground zinc and lead mine situated in Dariba, Rajasthan, India. The mining equipment at the location is maintained by the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) namely Sandvik and Atlas Copco, who carry out the maintenance and inspection operations for the equipment. Based on the downtime data extracted for the equipment fleet over the period of 6 months spanning from 1st January 2017 until 30th June 2017, it was revealed that significant contribution of three downtime issues related to namely Engine, Hydraulics, and Transmission to be common among all the loading equipment fleet and substantiated by Pareto Analysis. Further scrutiny through Bubble Matrix Analysis of the given factors revealed the major influence of selective factors namely Overheating, No Load Taken (NTL) issues, Gear Changing issues and Hose Puncture and leakage issues. Utilizing the equipment wise analysis of all the downtime factors obtained, spares consumed, and the alarm logs extracted from the machines, technical design changes in the equipment and pre shift critical alarms checklist were proposed for the equipment maintenance. The given analysis is beneficial to allow OEMs or mine management to focus on the critical issues hampering the reliability of mine equipment and design necessary maintenance strategies to mitigate them.
The use of alternative energy sources to meet energy demand reduces environmental damage. To diversify an energy matrix and to minimize global warming, a solar energy is gaining space, being an important source of renewable energy, and its potential depends on the climatic conditions of the region. Brazil presents a great solar potential for a generation of electric energy, so the knowledge of solar radiation and its characteristics are fundamental for the study of energy use. Due to the above reasons, this article aims to verify the climatic variability corresponding to the variations in solar radiation anomalies, in the face of climate change scenarios. The data used in this research are part of the Intercomparison of Interconnected Models, Phase 5 (CMIP5), which contributed to the preparation of the fifth IPCC-AR5 report. The solar radiation data were extracted from The Australian Community Climate and Earth System Simulator (ACCESS) model using the RCP 4.5 and RCP 8.5 scenarios that represent an intermediate structure and a pessimistic framework, the latter being the most worrisome in all cases. In order to allow the use of solar radiation as a source of energy in a given location and/or region, it is important, first, to determine its availability, thus justifying the importance of the study. The results pointed out, for the 75-year period (2026-2100), based on a pessimistic scenario, indicate a drop in solar radiation of the approximately 12% in the eastern region of Rio Grande do Sul. Factors that influence the pessimistic prospects of this scenario should be better observed by the responsible authorities, since they can affect the possibility to produce electricity from solar radiation.
The use of biomass to produce renewable energy is one of the forms that can be used to reduce the impact of energy production. Like any other energy resource, there are limitations for biomass use, and it must compete not only with fossil fuels but also with other renewable energy sources such as solar or wind energy. Combustion is currently the most efficient and widely used waste-to-energy process, in the areas where direct use of biomass is possible, without the need to make large transfers of raw material. Many industrial facilities can use agricultural or forestry waste, straw, chips, bagasse, etc. in their thermal systems without making major transformations or adjustments in the feeding to the ovens, making this waste an attractive and cost-effective option in terms of availability, access, and costs. In spite of the facilities and benefits, the environmental reasons (emission of gases and particulate material) are decisive for its use for energy purpose. This paper describes a valorization of residues from forest industry to generate energy, using a case study.