No company or industry can afford to be ill equipped to meet the mounting environmental challenges. Here is what some companies are doing.
The value which can be placed upon the rights of property in a name of a commodity, a food or drink, perhaps famous all over the world, which has come down to us through the centuries, is incalculable. Most of such foods and drinks have a regional association, and are prepared according to methods, often secret, handed down from one generation to another and from locally grown and produced materials. Nowhere are such traditions so well established as in cheese‐making and the wine industry. The names do not signify merely a method of manufacture, since this can be simulated almost anywhere, nor even the raw materials, but differences in climate, the soil and its treatment, its produce, harvesting, even in the contaminants of environment. Rochfort cheese, for example, is made from ewe's milk, but most important, with mould growths found only in the caves of that part of France where it is stored.
The purpose of this study is to empirically examine the utility of information systems (IS) success models in mandatory e-government services, as opposed to the volitional…
The purpose of this study is to empirically examine the utility of information systems (IS) success models in mandatory e-government services, as opposed to the volitional ones that have been the focus of previous studies. The models include the technology acceptance model (TAM) (1989) and Seddon’s model (1997), which involve three (ease of use, usefulness and citizens satisfaction) and four variables (system quality, information quality, usefulness and citizen satisfaction).
The models were compared based on a survey conducted on 780 foundation year students of government universities in Saudi Arabia. The Saudi Government has launched a mandatory e-government service geared to assist high school graduates in the university academic admission process. The goodness-of-fit and parsimony of fit indices and the explanatory power were used to compare the two models.
The structural equation modeling techniques revealed that overall, the two models both exhibited reasonable fit with the collected data, whereas TAM showed the best fit to the sample data and yielded superior goodness-of-fit indices over Seddon’s model. In terms of explanatory power, Seddon’s model predicted 28% (R2 = 0.28) of the variance explained for citizen satisfaction, whereas TAM predicted 21% (R2 = 0.21). All the parsimony of fit indices favored TAM over Seddon’s model.
This study examined the validity of TAM and Seddon’s model, using citizen satisfaction as the dependent variable to compare them. TAM and Seddon’s model were modified to better fit the current research context of mandatory e-government services; thus, the findings may not hold for their original or other voluntary settings. In addition, the focus on a single survey for a certain time in a certain territory of mandatory e-government service may have limited the generalizability of the results to other mandatory contexts. Future research should make use of large, cross-sectional samples in different mandatory contexts to enhance result generalization.
This study’s findings can provide e-government practitioners with deeper perceptions of how to address citizen satisfaction with mandatory e-government services. The results exposed usefulness as the common and major construct, having the strongest influence on citizen satisfaction in both TAM and Seddon’s model; thus, maximizing the benefits of e-government services for citizens is crucial to their success. The causal relationship between information quality and citizen satisfaction was not supported. This supports the perspective that e-government services are currently evolving quickly, becoming more integrated and easier-to-use, generally requiring only a few clicks and less information.
This study has extended the assessment of the validity of IS success models to a mandatory IS usage setting. The comparison study of different IS success models is crucial as it acts as a guide for researchers to determine the trade-off between the models used to conduct research on a particular context. The study concludes that TAM is the most parsimonious and universal model for the study of user satisfaction in mandatory contexts. The findings will provide e-government practitioners with insights into IS success measures suited to enhance the effectiveness of newly and future mandated e-government services.
Learners with autism require specialized education and supports to ensure acquisition and mastery of various communication skills. This is particularly true for…
Learners with autism require specialized education and supports to ensure acquisition and mastery of various communication skills. This is particularly true for individuals whose disability significantly impacts their language development. Without functional communication, these individuals often engage in severe behavior, have reduced self-determination, and experience diminished quality of life. Accordingly, researchers in special education and related fields have sought ways to improve the communication skills of learners with autism who need specialized language and communication interventions. Although the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) is well-established in the empirical literature and has helped countless individuals learn to communicate, the method known as facilitated communication (FC; which also is being called “supported typing” and “rapid prompting method”) has become increasingly popular in recent years. Few methods in special education have been as thoroughly discredited as FC and perhaps none are as dangerous. This chapter contrasts the thoroughly debunked FC and its pseudoscientific characteristics with those underpinning PECS. A brief historical account of each method is provided along with key scientific and pseudoscientific features that distinguish science from pseudoscience. Ultimately, our intent is to further clarify how FC is not an augmentative or alternative communication method and why PECS is.
This paper describes the forms of knowledge used by players of fantasy sports, games where players create ideal sports teams and compete to accumulate points based on professional athletes’ statistical performances. Messages from a discussion forum associated with a popular fantasy basketball game were analyzed to understand how players described their decision‐making strategies to their peers. The focus of the research was to understand if players use mathematical concepts such as optimization and statistical analyses when assembling their team or if they base their decisions on personal preferences, beliefs, and biases. The analyses in this paper suggest the latter, that players rely on informal, domain‐specific heuristics that often lead to the creation of competitive teams. These heuristics and other forms of player discourse related to knowledge use are described. The paper also suggests ways that analyses of existing practices might provide a foundation for creating gaming environments that assist the acquisition of more formal reasoning skills.
OUR readers may be amused this month by the microfilm imaginings of our correspondent in “Letters on Our Affairs,” but there is undoubtedly a more marked disposition now than formerly to reduce to a mechanism many of the usual routines of libraries. We suppose routine is always mechanical, is repetitive and, for the enterprising ambitious library worker, a matter of boredom. How far the “electronic brain” and other more recent developments of science can be adapted to our simple processes remains to be seen, but all experiment is good even if it does not survive the initial stage. What is to be most feared in any profession is the standardizing inflexibly of its techniques ; that way lies its old age, perhaps its petrification. It is for this reason that we welcome such things as those we have already discussed at times in our pages—the central cataloguing experiment of Harrods, the punched‐card vouchers and other records sponsored (so far as libraries are concerned) by Mr. T. E. Callender, the highly mechanised method of classing propounded by Dr. Ranganathan, the placing of D.C. numbers on the title pages of the books they publish by Jonathan Cape and Harrap, the visible fines receiving box and many more such things. No one uses them all. They free librarians, it is urged, for more specifically library service. We hope that they do. We have always before us the undoubted truth that the good man scraps methods that are obsolescent and the librarian (if one now exists) who is not a business man—especially if he is charged with a large library—is a somewhat pathetic person.
2. Elastomers A wide variety of elastomers, generally synthetic, are used in modern valves of the butterfly and diaphragm types with the dual function of lining/protecting…
2. Elastomers A wide variety of elastomers, generally synthetic, are used in modern valves of the butterfly and diaphragm types with the dual function of lining/protecting internal metal surfaces in contact with the duty and providing the necessary interference for sealing. Without resorting to exotic and expensive metals of construction, even most aggressive services can be successfully handled by variation of elastomer type, while the particular compound is designed to still retain the physical characteristics necessary for optimum sealing. The number of permutations is thus large and indeed one manufacturer offers as many as 18 different resilient liner options. The main elastomer types are summarised: