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Apparently The Regular Season Is Irrelevant In The NHL

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While the opening round of the NBA playoffs so far could have been blindly simulated, chaos is governing the ice.Ranked dead last in early January, the St. Louis Blues completed arguably the greatest midseason U-turn in NHL history by advancing to the conference semifinals. And that’s probably just the third-most-surprising storyline of this young postseason. Tampa Bay and Calgary, the top seeds in each conference, survived less than two weeks, combining to win a single game. Never before had the President’s Trophy-winning team been swept. Never before had the top seeds both been eliminated in the opening round.It has already seemed like “the year of the underdog” in the 2019 Stanley Cup playoffs. But unlike its hardcourt brethren, the NHL is accustomed to things not going to plan in the “second season.” So how does this postseason stack up against years past? Using the archived money lines at SportsOddsHistory.com, we can decipher a team’s implied probability of advancing and use that to rank the wildest opening rounds in Stanley Cup history. After marauding the league during the regular season, the Tampa Bay Lightning were installed as 1-to-4 favorites going into their series with the Columbus Blue Jackets. Jon Cooper’s outfit won the President’s Trophy behind 128 points and 62 regular-season wins, which tied for the most ever. Tampa was the league’s highest-scoring team by a generous margin, spearheaded by three 40-goal snipers — a feat that hadn’t been accomplished in nearly a quarter-century. Not since 2009-10 had there been a bigger favorite in a series.1That year, Washington, Chicago and San Jose all had implied odds greater than 77 percent. Columbus checked in at +325, which translates to a 23 percent implied probability of winning after adjusting for the cut of the bookmaker, or the vigorish.2We calculated the true implied odds by dividing the implied probability of one team by the sum of the implied probability of both teams. Tampa Bay fell apart against the new-kids-on-the-block Blue Jackets in what could be argued was the single biggest collapse in modern sport. What’s more, it was the first series win in Columbus franchise history.“In today’s game with the parity, it’s not unusual that an eight [seed] beats a one anymore,” Cooper said after the loss. “Everybody’s that close.”North of the border, the Calgary Flames were given a 67 percent implied probability of winning their series against the Colorado Avalanche. Bill Peters’s squad included the league’s second-best offense3Tied with Boston. and a triumvirate of 30-goal scorers. After taking the series opener, Calgary got buried in four straight games by the Avalanche, a wild-card club with the 17th-best record in the NHL.“Obviously we were the big underdogs,” Avs center Nathan MacKinnon said. “And no one picked us to win.”But the pandemonium didn’t stop there. Despite not having home ice, the Pittsburgh Penguins had a 59 percent implied probability of winning their series against the New York Islanders. They were promptly swept. The Nashville Predators, which had reached at least the second round in three consecutive seasons, had a 61 percent implied probability against the Dallas Stars, but the Preds fell in just six games.The Vegas Golden Knights, last season’s expansion surprise, were slight favorites over the San Jose Sharks despite not having home ice. But the Sharks came back from down 3-1 in the series to force a Game 7, in which they found the net four times on one power play and edged Vegas in an all-time classic. “That’s a once in a lifetime game,” Sharks center Logan Couture told The Athletic. “I don’t think my heart can take another one like that.”The Winnipeg Jets, meanwhile, entered the season on the short list of Cup contenders but were slight underdogs against St. Louis even with their home ice. They lasted only six games in the playoffs. And the Toronto Maple Leafs gave the favored Boston Bruins all they could handle before falling in Game 7. There’s potential for more chaos as well: The defending champion Washington Capitals hold home ice and a 57 percent implied probability of winning. But they failed to put away the Carolina Hurricanes in Game 6 and will need to win a series-deciding seventh game on Wednesday to stay alive.In total, of the seven teams to advance so far to the second round, just two were favored (St. Louis and Boston), and just three of those with home ice advanced (Boston, San Jose and New York). Last year, seven of the eight opening-round matchups were won by the team holding home ice. Since the turn of the century, only 18 away teams have advanced to the second round without an implied probability of at least 35 percent. Two have come this season.Which is to say, the second round won’t be as top-heavy in terms of quality as it has been in recent years. From the 2010-11 season through last year’s playoffs,4Excluding the lockout-shortened 2012-13 campaign. the average team to qualify for a conference semifinal team had been a 105-point outfit that was 0.39 goals better than the average team in that given season, according to Sports-Reference’s Simple Rating System. The average of this year’s crop is a 99-point outfit that’s 0.29 goals better than average. Three of the four best teams in the league didn’t even reach the second round. This means that the eventual winner is anybody’s guess: MoneyPuck.com gives six teams odds of better than 10 percent to win the whole thing, with the Blues leading the pack at 16 percent.These gargantuan first-round upsets are rare, regardless of the sport. In MLB’s wild-card era, only five teams touting the best conference record have failed to reach the second round, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. In the NBA, a 1- or 2-seed hasn’t lost in the opening round of the playoffs since the top-seeded Chicago Bulls in 2012. But with its randomness, hockey stands out for its opportunities to surprise. Research by Michael J. Lopez, Gregory J. Matthews and Benjamin S. Baumer found that, on average, the better NBA team in a best-of-7 series advances 80 percent of the time. To match that rate, the NHL would require a best-of-51 series.This postseason has been a difficult one for giants, with new blood chasing Lord Stanley’s Mug. And while the outcome in the NHL is far less predetermined than, say, the NBA or NFL, it’s been a banner two-week stretch of upsets. Suffice it to say that luck goes a long way in hockey (so too does a red-hot goalie). But seldom does the best team hoist the trophy at season’s end. That’s what makes professional hockey special — you can witness history every time you tune in. read more

House of Scotland Tartan Day celebration in Balboa Park

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first_imgHouse of Scotland Tartan Day celebration in Balboa Park Posted: April 4, 2019 Categories: Good Morning San Diego, Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter KUSI Newsroom April 4, 2019center_img Updated: 12:35 PM KUSI Newsroom, 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsSAN DIEGO (KUSI) – The House of Scotland hosts San Diego’s Tartan Day celebration on April 6th at Balboa Park.Tartan Day was created to celebrate Scottish history and the achievements of people of Scottish descent around the world. It commemorates the Scottish Declaration of Independence, from which the American Declaration of Independence was modeled, according to event organizers.The House of Scotland cottage, along with the House of Scotland Pipe Band will be hosting this fun, family day which will feature singing, dancing, music, a piping competition, clan booths, Scottish arts, children’s activities, and food.For more information click here.last_img read more

Someday a drone will guard your home

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first_imgA drone might be your next guard dog.Sunflower Labs, a San Francisco-based startup, is combining motion detectors, a quadcopter and a phone app into a home security system. The Sunflower system could go on sale in 2020, according to CEO Alex Pachikov, who expects to charge wealthy customers several hundred dollars a month for the peace of mind — and replacement hardware if anything breaks. For comparison, premium security systems can cost more than $100 a month, and Sunflower says that six-camera systems can cost up to $300 per month.Drones for home protection might seem like overkill, especially if you first heard of unmanned aerial vehicles as something the military uses. But Pachikov said Sunflower’s technology is actually meant to head off the bunker mentality. In some areas, 99 percent of all home security calls are false alarms, so you probably don’t need to freak out when you hear the backyard bushes rustling. ShadeCraft Sunflower 8 Photos 2:45 Share your voice “Our brand is built around dispelling the notion that you need a panic room,” Pachikov said during a meeting at his Sunflower-protected home in a suburb south of San Francisco. Sunflower’s drone system, he said, will set your mind at ease by confirming it’s a possum, not a prowler, in your backyard.Drones have captured popular attention as they’ve become commercialized. Farmers monitor crops with drones, real estate agents photograph homes with them and movie makers use them to shoot overhead scenes. Some pests using drones have shut down traffic at major airports, including London’s busy Heathrow and Gatwick.Sunflower, which has 20 employees located in both California and Switzerland and demonstrated its tech at CES this year, isn’t the only company to use drones for security. Alarm.com touted some in 2017, and Drone Guarder is taking preorders for its products.”Two-thirds of families in America live in homes suitable for this,” Pachikov said, so when costs come down, he expects drone security to be commonplace. “They’ll be as common as Ubers in San Francisco. An average home will be able to afford this.”How it worksSunflower drones are the most obvious part of the company’s system, but it actually begins with what look like sidewalk lights — “sunflowers” — that will dot your property. The lights illuminate the ground and are equipped with motion and vibration detectors. Drones Smart Security Systems Security Preview • This solar patio umbrella follows the sun Commentscenter_img Now playing: Watch this: See Sunflower Labs’ home security drones 25 Tags How Sunflower’s home security drone spotted my bungled… The sunflowers send alerts to a computer in the drone’s base station, which Sunflower calls “the Hive.” The computer processes the signals to distinguish footfalls from car traffic and other benign sources of noise. The motion sensors can also tell if something is tall and narrow like a human, or short and wide like a dog.If the base station computer is worried, it sends an alert to an app on your phone. That will let you deploy a drone, which Sunflower calls “the Bee.” The base station cover opens and the drone heads out, piloting itself automatically around obstacles and staying about 20 feet in the air as it heads to the trouble spot. You can watch the video live on your phone.There’s no direct connection to the police, but Sunflower Labs’ setup can pull together a data package if you need to file a report. Pachikov says the startup could use others’ computing interfaces to automate reports in the future.Plenty of challengesGetting Sunflower’s quadcopters in the air won’t be without its challenges. Air space is heavily regulated, and a waiver from the Federal Aviation Administration is necessary to fly a drone at night or beyond your own line of sight. If you’re near an airport, you’ll need to jump through more hoops. The Sunflower Labs drone emerges from its “Hive” base station. It’s part of a home security system set to go on sale in 2020. Stephen Shankland/CNET But Sunflower Labs expects those regulations to ease. Indeed, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao unveiled plans last month to liberalize some federal drone rules, in part to boost the economy and create jobs. Sunflower and its competitors will also face concerns from society at large. Is a mail carrier going to be happy when a quadcopter swoops by? And how about neighbors who don’t want the noise or privacy intrusion?I found the drones weren’t bothersome when I attended a company demonstration. I could hear the UAV through an open back door, but it was far quieter than gas-powered leaf blowers or lawnmowers.As for privacy, the drone flies only on the perimeter of your property and the cameras point toward your house. That means they won’t peer into other homes. Of course, you’ll have to explain that to an edgy neighbor. First published Feb. 7 at 5 a.m. PT.Update, 8:54 a.m. PT: Corrects the spelling of Alex Pachikov’s name and adds more information about the cost of security systems.Best drones for 2019: Our editors hand-picked these products based on our tests and reviews.High-flying pests: Super Bowl 2019 stadium pestered by drones, despite ban. Droneslast_img read more

Intl rights orgs express concern over threats to Sultana Kamal

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first_imgSultana KamalSeven international and regional civil society organisations have expressed their deep concern over violent threats received by prominent lawyer and human rights activist Sultana Kamal. In a letter calling upon the Bangladesh authorities to conduct “credible investigation into threats of violence and ensure protection of Sultana Kamal”, the organisations stated that she has received threats from the “radical Islamist group Hefazat-e-Islam” after expressing her views on a TV talk show.Signed by the Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA), Front Line Defenders, Amnesty International, South Asians for Human Rights, Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development, the Association for Progressive Communications and International Service for Human Rights, the letter stated that on 28 May, Sultana Kamal, Hefazat representative Mufti Sakhawat Hossain and others, appeared on a TV talk show to discuss the removal of the lady justice sculpture from the Supreme Court premises. Hefazat-e-Islam had insisted the statue needed to be dismantled on 26 May, arguing that it would lead to idol worship which went against the tenets of Islam.During the talk show, Sultana said that if no religious structure was permitted, then no mosques should be on the premises either. Reacting to this statement, Hefazat demanded her arrest within 24 hours. A Hefazat leader stated ‘we will break every bone in [her] body.’ Sultana received various other threats, including on social media. A person even posted a photo of Sultana Kamal, edited to look like she was being hanged.Dhaka Metropolitan Police said they were taking measures to ensure the safety of Sultana Kamal. The international rights organisations, in the letter, contended that so far the efforts to ensure her safety were limited to monitoring her neighbourhood.“We are concerned by the threats faced by Sultana. Violence has been used numerous times to stifle freedom of expression and the legitimate and peaceful work of human rights defenders in Bangladesh,” the letter said.The signatory organisations of the letter urged the Bangladesh authorities to openly and unequivocally condemn Hefazat’s statements and threats against Sultana Kamal and other Bangladeshi civil society, carry out all necessary measures to guarantee the physical and psychosocial security of Sultana Kamal, her family and fellow human rights defenders, assure she does not face additional gender-based discrimination or violence, and ensure an enabling environment for human rights defenders to carry out their peaceful and legitimate activities without any fear of reprisals, harassment or intimidation from state and non-state actors.last_img read more

3 killed in Sirajganj road crash

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first_imgThree bus passengers were killed and 19 others injured following head-on collision between two buses on Bangabandhu Bridge West Connecting road at Soydabad in Sadar upazila in Sirajganj on Wednesday afternoon, reports UNB.The identities of the deceased could not be known yet.Bangabandhu Bridge West police station officer-in-charge Shahid Alam said that the accident took place around 4:45pm when the ‘Hanif Paribahan’ bus collided head-on with another bus, leaving three people dead on the spot and 19 others injured.last_img read more

Experiments suggest dogs and monkeys have a humanlike sense of morality

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first_img Common sense suggests that most people prefer to deal with other people who are fair and in some cases, helpful. In this new effort, the researchers sought to learn if the same might be true of dogs and capuchin monkeys regarding human interactions. To that end, they set up three experiments designed to test how dogs and monkeys reacted to humans behaving rudely.In the first experiment, a capuchin monkey was allowed to watch a scene in which a person was trying to open a can. After failing, the person asked another person for help—in some cases, the other person complied, and in some cases, they did not. Also in some cases, there was another person present who did nothing, serving as a passive actor in the scene.In the second experiment, the researchers positioned a capuchin monkey to watch as two people arrived with three balls each. One of the people then asked the other person to give them all of their balls and the other person complied. Next, the person who had given up their balls asked the other to return them—in some cases the other person complied, and in other cases refused.The third experiment was nearly identical to the second, except it involved dogs, their owners and another person unknown to the dog.At the conclusion of all three experiments, the people involved (including passive actors) all offered a treat to the monkey or dog that had been observing the action. The researchers report that in all three scenarios, the animals showed a clear disinclination to accept a treat from a person that refused to help with the can or refused to give back the balls, as compared to those that were helpful or fair or were passive actors. The researchers claim this shows that capuchin monkeys and dogs make social judgments in ways similar to human infants, and that it might even offer clues regarding the development of morals in humans. Citation: Experiments suggest dogs and monkeys have a human-like sense of morality (2017, February 15) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2017-02-dogs-monkeys-human-like-morality.html Credit: CC0 Public Domain Explore further Study shows capuchins less receptive to others who refuse to help when asked More information: James R. Anderson et al, Third-party social evaluations of humans by monkeys and dogs, Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews (2017). DOI: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2017.01.003AbstractDevelopmental psychologists are increasingly interested in young children’s evaluations of individuals based on third-party interactions. Studies have shown that infants react negatively to agents who display harmful intentions toward others, and to those who behave unfairly. We describe experimental studies of capuchin monkeys’ and pet dogs’ differential reactions to people who are helpful or unhelpful in third-party contexts, and monkeys’ responses to people who behave unfairly in exchanges of objects with a third party. We also present evidence that capuchin monkeys monitor the context of failures to help and violations of reciprocity, and that intentionality is one factor underlying their social evaluations of individuals whom they see interacting with others. We conclude by proposing some questions for studies of nonhuman species’ third party-based social evaluations. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. (Phys.org)—A team of researchers from Kyoto University has found that dogs and capuchin monkeys watch how humans interact with one another and react less positively to those that are less willing to help or share. In their paper published in the journal Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, the team describes a series of experiments they carried out with several dogs and capuchin monkeys and what they discovered about both species social preferences. © 2017 Phys.orglast_img read more