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Dell and NetApp price competition puts a crimp in Pure Storage revenue growth – Blocks and Files

Robust price competition led by Dell clipped the wings of storage high flyer Pure Storage in its fiscal Q3.

In the earnings call yesterday, Pure Storage CEO Charlie Giancarlo reported a double-digit drop in pricing each of the last two quarters. Thats just very unusual. It was obviously difficult to predict that sort of thing, because its not normal.

The company attributed the price falls largely to competitive pressures led by Dell and NetApp, vice chairman David Hatfield said, adding: We wont lose [deals] on price, particularly in large enterprises.

Pure posted $428.4m revs in Q3, up 15 per cent but less than its low-point guidance of $434m. Net loss was $30m, slightly worse than last years $28.2m.

Revenue guidance for the fourth quarter is $484m-$496m, with the $490m mid-point representing 16 per cent revenue growth. Pure said the guidance takes into account two quarters of pricing declines and a more challenging global large enterprise environment.

Pure said the UK due to Brexit and Japan were more difficult trading environments and it also faced some difficulties in the USA.

Full year guidance is $1.635bn to $1.647bn, $1.641bn at the mid-point and 21 per cent up 2018. Originally Pure had target $1.735bn, which was revised to $1.68bn in Q2. Now it has been lowered again.

The company said price competition was solely responsible for the Q3 revenue miss it shipped all the product units it expected to ship. Giancarlo claimed in prepared remarks the growth was significantly faster than our major competitors and the market as a whole [but] continued pricing declines, which were higher than we expected, accounted for the gap to our revenue expectations at the beginning of the quarter, although we are also seeing signs of a more challenging global business environment as commented on by other large infrastructure suppliers.

Sales progress in Q3 included 350 new customers taking total customer count to 7,000. Government segment revenues doubled and the newly-introduced FlashArray//C was the fastest-ever growth of any Pure product, admittedly in less than a quarters availability. Talking about FlashArray//C sales Giancarlo said: We have seven and eight digit deals in the pipeline for this product, so clearly its something that stands out.

Giancarlo thinks the price decline will stop: But now that pricing is where it is, that bodes well for volumes as we go forward and it cant continue to drop at that rate.

There is no doubt that when things turn were going to be very well positioned to capitalise that in the enterprise.

He also signalled a product launch is in the offing: We are anticipating our File Services coming out mid next year The expectation is that it will improve our growth.

Giancarlo echoed NetApps Data Fabric vision in his prepared remarks: Pure is transforming storage to a modern, more cloud-like model helping our customers to run their operations as a true, automated, storage-as-a-service cloud, delivering consistent data services seamlessly across on-prem and public cloud infrastructure.

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Golden State Warriors still have prolonged success in mind – Blue Man Hoop

The Golden State Warriors are not ready to call it quits on the dynasty just yet. Longevity is still on the mind of every key member of the team.

For Stephen Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson, the Warriors reign is far from over. The three have battled in five consecutive NBA Finals and are viewing this season as an opportunity to gain some much-needed rest.

The pace that the Dubs were playing at was never going to be maintainable. Playing deep into June for five straight seasons is enough mileage to cause problems. At some point, the Warriors luck with health was going to run out.

This season, the Warriors are feeling the pain of multiple deep postseason runs. However, all of these injuries may be a blessing in disguise.

By the time next season begins, the Warriors core will be well-rested and fully recovered. For the first time in half a decade, this team will begin a season with fresh legs underneath them.

This could prove to be deadly for the rest of the league. For example, Michael Jordans Chicago Bulls bounced back stronger than ever following his year and a half retirement.

The Warriors could experience similar success. In fact, they may be more equipped for a powerful comeback than Jordans Bulls were. This is because the Warriors are in prime position to land a top draft pick.

With this lottery pick, the Warriors can either select a young stud or trade for another star. Combine this with the chance of a strong free agency period for the Warriors and the Dubs could be back on top of the league in no time.

If longevity is the goal, the Warriors should look at these injuries as a blessing in disguise. Aside from Thompsons ACL injury, there should be no longterm suffering from any other Warriors member.

Want your voice heard? Join the Blue Man Hoop team!

Golden State is preparing to put the league on notice once again. Dont be surprised to see the Warriors back on top next season.

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3 Gratitude Habits You Can Adopt Over The Thanksgiving Holiday For Deeper Connection And Joy – Forbes


Although we should endeavor to make gratitude a year-round practiceespecially in the workplace, where we all too often forget to express thanksthere is no denying that the value of being grateful is front-of-mind this time of year. Business leaders should take the holiday break as an opportunity to engage in gratitude activities that can translate into lasting habits.

A core part of my executive coaching practice is encouraging clients to regularly pause and reset: to step away from the noise and get in touch with their most authentic self. Holidays are a ready-made reset button, allowing us to step away from the daily grind and give us a chance to reconnect with others and with ourselves. Use that opportunity mindfully, and you will find the benefits last long after the holidays are over.

As we gather with family and friends for Thanksgiving, it is customary for us to take a nice long walkeither before or after a meal. Whether we do it alone or with others, this is a chance to rediscover the joys of walking simply for the pleasure of the activity itself. We are not walking to get somewhere, and we are not on the clock. There is no need to check our cell phones. We can let go and lose ourselves in the sensation of experiencing our surroundings.

A sense and savor walk is very much a kind of mindfulness. As with meditation, the goal is to eliminate distraction and focus on the present. Pay attention to your breath, to the sensation of your footfall. Feel the air on your face, smell the trees, the leaves on the ground. Listen to the birds. Pause and take in the view.

One reason a savoring walk has been shown to do wonders for mental health is that it encourages us to feel awe. Immersing ourselves in nature is especially conducive to a sense of awe, but close attention can yield awe and wonder in any setting. We might notice the rooftop garden of a building or the reflection of clouds in a puddle. Research into awe finds it shares a good deal in common with gratitude. It makes us less self-centered and reinforces feelings of connection to the world and others. Awe and wonder may also enhance creative thinking.

The holiday also presents us with numerous opportunities to connect with loved ones. Some we may not have seen for a while. In other cases, we may have the chance for a more leisurely conversation than usual. Either way, we can renew our ability to enjoy human connection for its own sake. We have no strategic objective in mind, there is no transaction involved. We are just there to listen, share, and be present.

Having an in-depth conversation with someone is a simple way of expressing gratitude. We show we value them by sharing two of our most precious possessions: time and attention. Like other gratitude practices, a meaningful conversation strengthens feelings of connectedness to something larger than ourselves. Try delving beneath the surface and sharing something you would not typically share to amplify connection.

Research finds a link between the frequency of deep discussions and overall happiness. Such conversations help us explore and create meaning, a fundamental human need. As Socrates famously stated, The unexamined life is not worth living.

Rather than put the focus of saying grace on one person and then moving on to the meal, give everyone a chance to express thanks if the spirit moves them. Alternatively, you can distribute index cards and have people write down what they are most grateful for. Or you can encourage people to share their favorite holiday memory.Such exercises can seem awkward at firstbut once someone has broken the ice, people welcome being able to share.

After the holiday, consider bringing this practice into the workplace. While we typically sit around a conference table with a strategic objective or pressing need in mind, coming together around a table is still about finding connection and common ground. There is nothing wrong with starting a weekly staff meeting with a brief expression of thanks for something that has gone well, or praise for a job well done.

Similarly, we can seek to translate the other two practices covered here into regular habits. Make an effort to take at least one twenty-minute savoring walk a week. You can also explore the option of a more deliberate practice of walking meditation.

Make time for deep, meaningful conversations. A recurring source of stress I see in my executive clients is a feeling they are not investing sufficiently in maintaining relationships. I encourage them to block out time for connection and schedule lunches or walks just as they would an important business meeting.

Thanksgiving is an opportunity not only to express thankfulness for our blessingsbut to plant seeds of habits that will keep us in a gratitude mindset throughout the year.

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Parkinsons tremors could be treated with SOUNDWAVES, claim scientists – Herald Publicist

Zapping the brains of Parkinsons sufferers with ultrasound waves may relieve their shakes and take away the necessity for painful surgical procedure, a examine suggests.

Researchers discovered 95 per cent of sufferers noticed a direct discount of their tremors after being handled with high-frequency soundwaves.

And fewer than one in ten (eight per cent) skilled negative effects at a six-month follow-up.

1000s of Parkinsons sufferers who do not reply to treatment at present depend on deep mind stimulation.

Zapping the brains of Parkinsons sufferers with ultrasound waves may relieve their shakes and take away the necessity for painful surgical procedure, Italian researchers have discovered (file)

The process includes slicing a gap of their heads and surgically implanting electrodes into the mind.

But it surelycan set off a slew of nasty negative effects together with migraines, nausea and bother concentrating.

The shaking in Parkinsons is brought on by defective circuits within the thalamus, a small space on the base of the mind.

Medics goal this with high-frequency soundwaves. These ultrasound beams generate warmth that breaks the irregular circuit inflicting the tremor.

The remedy was accredited by the UK watchdog NICE final June and is at present being trialled on the Imperial School Healthcare NHS Belief.

Parkinsons illness impacts one in 500 folks, and round 127,00zero folks within the UK stay with the situation.

Figures additionally counsel a million Individuals additionally endure.

It causes muscle stiffness, slowness of motion, tremors, sleep disturbance, persistent fatigue, an impaired high quality of life and may result in extreme incapacity.

Its a progressive neurological situation that destroys cells within the a part of the mind that controls motion.

Victims are identified to have diminished provides of dopamine as a result of nerve cells that make it have died.

Theres at present no remedy and no approach of stopping the development of the illness, however a whole lot of scientific trials are underway to try to change that.

The illness claimed the lifetime of boxing legend Muhammad Ali in 2016.

However its only being examined on folks with important tremor (ET) a neurological situation which additionally blights victims with uncontrollable shakes.

The newest examine will give hope to hundreds of Parkinsons whove been pushing for scientific trials to start out on sufferers with their illness.

Researchers from the College of LAquila in Italy checked out 39 sufferers with a median age of 65 whose shakes had not been curbed by medication.

The members, 18 with ET and 21 with PD, had skilled signs for a median of greater than a decade.

Scientists evaluated the sufferers for tremor severity and quizzed them on their high quality of life earlier than and instantly after remedy, in addition to twice within the following 12 months.

They discovered 37 of 39 sufferers noticed their shakes enormously decreased instantly after ultrasound remedy.

Their signs have been saved at bay in follow-up evaluations at six months and one 12 months, researchers say.

Seven sufferers skilled negative effects together with limb weak spot, tingling and slurred speech after the remedy.

However at a follow-up six months later, these had been cured in all however three of them.

As a result of its minimally invasive, the brand new remedy reduces the danger of issues of bleeding and infections, stated examine lead creatorDr Federico Bruno.

Dr Bruno, from the the division of biotechnological and utilized scientific sciences on the College of LAquila, added: One other benefit is the rapid impact this remedy supplies, not like deep mind stimulation which requires a break-in interval for the electrostimulation.

Moreover, remedy with MRgFUS [ultrasound] requires shorter hospitalization and is a reasonably well-tolerated process even by extra fragile sufferers.

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Searching for the Ghost Orchids of the Everglades – Discover Magazine

Admittedly, there are few circumstances in which a swamp buggy feels like the best choice of vehicle, but on this particular excursion to see one of the rarest orchids on the planet, our monster-truck-sized tires seem comically out of place. Trundling along a dusty, double-track road, we pass through open meadows and airy stands of slash pine (Pinus elliottii) and saw palmetto (Serenoa repens). The faint breeze the vehicle stirs up is so hot and dry, I half expect the straw-yellow grasses along our route to burst into flame.

With every few hundred feet of forward progress, though, we drop an imperceptible inch or two in elevation, moving from the relative highlands of the pine flatwoods toward what some here call the Grand Canyon of the Everglades: the Fakahatchee Strand. This 38-kilometer-long (24-mile) stretch of densely forested wetland is one of the lowest points in Floridaalbeit by only a few feetand, as a result, carries much of the fresh water that flows in a slow, meandering path from swamps up north to the states southern tip. At least it used to.

A Florida black bear wades through a cypress swamp on a cattle ranch immediately north of Big Cypress National Preserve. (Credit: Carlton Ward Jr.)

To its proponents, for whom the word swamp is no more a pejorative than forest or meadow, the Fakahatchee Strand is not simply a conduitor, worse, land that is valuable only if drained and developed. Its a special place, home not just to panthers and bears and river otters, but also to one of the rarest and most famous plants in the world: the ghost orchid (Dendrophylax lindenii). The Fakahatchee is also largely unknown and underappreciated by people in this state and beyond, says photographer Carlton Ward Jr., 43, an eighth-generation Floridian who has made this trek dozens of times in his efforts to document and share the rich biological diversity here. This is truly the wild heart of the Everglades, he says, as wild and inaccessible as you get in the state of Florida.

Wild as it may be, the Fakahatchee Strand is an ecosystem with a long history of degradation, and one that faces persistent threats. Several of its native species, including the Florida panther (Puma concolor coryi) and ghost orchid, are endangered and clinging to survival in a tiny fraction of the space they once inhabitedspace thats becoming increasingly cut off from other such remnants

A first-year American alligator finds solid ground on the head of its mother in Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary. (Credit: Mac Stone)

With Ward on a bench seat in the back and me riding shotgun, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologist Mark Danaher pilots the swamp buggy toward the deep-green, deciduous tangle ahead. As he drives, he describes some of the many insults that ecosystems here in the Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge incurred before the land was placed under federal protection in 1989. Most notable was the cypress era in the 1950s and 60s, which saw nearly every old-growth cypress tree in the region cut down and removed. Then there was the construction of roads and canals that, to this day, divert and syphon water away from the swamp.

Danaher and other refuge personnel are charged with protecting the native species that remain here, and, to the extent possible, restoring ecosystems to their historical conditions. In other habitats, that might involve prescribed burns, removal of invasive species, and translocating rare, native animals back onto the landscape. Protecting and restoring the refuges swampland is differentsimpler in some ways, far more complicated and political in others. It requires very little hands-on management, Danaher says. It doesnt require fire. We dont have exotic, invasive plant species to contend with. What it needs is good-quality, fresh water flowing through it.

A male Florida panther patrols a cypress swamp at Babcock Ranch State Preserve. (Credit: Carlton Ward Jr.)

But in Florida, where population growth, development, and habitat fragmentation have been the norm for decades, theres no guarantee that even the reduced flow will continue. Land, even swampland, is a precious commodity in a state that has welcomed on average nearly 900 new residents per day for the past 10 years. And draining swamps is seen as a necessary step by government officials and developers keen to build roads and subdivisions to accommodate all those newcomers.

Thats why we have to connect the people with the landscape, to ensure that these lands forever stay the best example of true, wild Florida, Danaher says. And that is precisely what Ward has spent years attempting to do with his photography.

At a bend in the road that turns toward the swamp, Danaher pulls the vehicle off into the weeds and cuts the engine. The three of us climb down onto parched ground, and Ward says with a hint of apology or apprehension, Ive never seen it this dry.

Granted, its May and the torrential afternoon rains of summer are due to begin any day, but the observation still sounds ominous coming from someone who knows the swamp so well. Ward has been wading into the Strands tannic waters for years, often on a weekly basis, to photograph the ecosystems inhabitants and its changing conditions from season to season. Today, we trudge off over ground littered with dry twigs where, on nearly any other visit, Ward would be skimming over the swamps surface on a paddleboard.

Carlton Ward Jr. paddles into a remote corner of the Fakahatchee Strand to set up a camera-trap system. During the summers of 2016, 2017, and 2018, Ward racked up 5,000 camera trap hours in his effort to capture the first photograph of a ghost orchid being pollinated. (Credit: Carlton Ward Jr.)

What brought the photographer to the refuge in earnest three years ago was a grant from the National Geographic Foundation to document some of the 200 remaining Florida panthers. It wasnt long, though, before another, even more elusive, targetone that Ward now calls the ultimate distractionbegan to occupy his time: the quest to capture an image of the pollinator of the ghost orchid. Long suspected but never confirmed, the identity of the orchids pollinator was an unanswered scientific question, and some thought that photographic evidence might help to conserve the endangered plant.

Standing at last in calf-deep water at the base of a pop ash tree (Fraxinus caroliniana), Danaher muses about the passion people have for orchids in general and ghost orchids in particularpassion made famous by the 1998 bookThe Orchid Thiefand the movieAdaptation. Even though he relates to the obsession, the 44-year-old Florida transplant still finds its reach to be surprising. For gods sake, they put pictures of ghost orchid flowers on U-haul trucks now, he marvels.

As he talks, Im struck by the plant clinging to the tree trunk in front of me. Im mesmerized not by the orchids famed beauty and ethereal qualities, but by its near lifeless appearance. Excited as I am to be standing in the Fakahatchee, gazing at a wild ghost orchid, the truth is, when the plants arent in bloom, theyre not much to look at. Which makes it that much more intriguing that Ward, Danaher, and others have placed the ghost orchid alongside the panther as an iconic representative of the swampa species with the potential to protect an entire ecosystem.

A ghost orchid in the Fakahatchee Strand, within the Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge. (Credit: Carlton Ward Jr.)

Orchid obsessionis, of course, nothing new. The Chinese were cultivating the plants thousands of years ago and publishing books on their care as early as the 13th century. By the mid-1800s, orchid collecting was all the rage in Victorian England, first among wealthy aristocratswho sent orchid hunters off to the furthest reaches of the planet to gather all they could findand later among the middle class. Ultimately, the craze would spread to nearly every corner of the world, driving what, today, has become a multi-billion-dollar industry.

Perhaps the most universally celebrated quality of orchids is their astounding diversity of form. Poets, painters, and scientists have all extolled the virtues of that variation, much as Polish naturalist Jakob Breyne did in 1678: If nature ever showed her playfulness in the formation of plants, this is visible in the most striking way among the orchids, he wrote. They take on the form of little birds, of lizards, of insects. They look like a man, like a woman, sometimes like an austere, sinister fighter, sometimes like a clown who excites our laughter.

Amidst this staggering diversity in a sea of nearly 30,000 orchid species, many specialty collectors seek one quality above all: novelty. For elite orchid lovers, the stranger or rarer a plant is, or the harder it is to cultivate, the more valuable it becomes. The desire to possess what no one else can, has, unfortunately, driven an illicit trade in rare, wild orchids, with tens of thousands of plants traded illegally each year. Individual orchids have sold for as much as $150,000. This demand has placed hundreds of rare species, including the ghost orchid, under tremendous pressure. Aside from habitat loss and degradation, poaching poses one of the greatest threats to ghost orchid survival, and today, only 2,000 to 2,500 wild individuals remain in the United States, with a separate, possibly genetically distinct, small population in Cuba.

The lush canopies of old-growth cypress in Corkscrew Swamp, Florida provide ideal habitat and microclimates for a number of rare epiphytes, like this yellow helmet orchid. (Credit: Mac Stone)

In their quest to identify the pollinator of the ghost orchid for the first time, this team of conservation photographers and scientists spent three summers standing waist-deep in alligator- and snake-laden water, swatting air blackened by mosquitoes, and climbing to sometimes nausea-inducing heights. They came away with an even deeper love for Floridas wildest wetlandsand with surprising discoveries that may help to conserve both the endangered orchid and its shrinking home.

For scientists, orchids have fueled a different sort of fervornot a desire to possess, but to understand how the plants myriad forms came into being. Despite what early philosophers once thought, or what believers in intelligent design might suggest now, orchid flowers were not shaped by the hand of a divine power. Instead, they arose and diversified under the persistent pressure of natural selection. Each one has its own evolutionary tale to tell, and in nearly every case, sex and the specialized relationships between the plants and their pollinators have played a major role.

One of the best known of these evolutionary stories is that of the star orchid of Madagascar (Angraecum sesquipedale). In 1862, three years after he publishedOn the Origin of Species, Charles Darwin received a package at his home from a British orchid grower. Inside he found a number of plants collected in Madagascar, including one in particular that captured his attention.

The "super ghost" in Audubon's Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary is a mass of ghost orchids, perched high in an ancient cypress tree that has produced flowers in every month of the year. Before the cypress forests of the eastern U.S. were logged, many ghost orchids may have bloomed atop these trees. Now, however, only a small tract of old growth cypress swamp remains in Corkscrew. (Credit: Mac Stone)

As he inspected the strange white orchid with a star-shaped arrangement of fleshy petals, Darwin took note of the flowers unusually long nectar tube, which measured some 30 centimeters (12 inches) from bloom to tip. Well versed in his own theory of evolution and having seen his fair share of orchids by that time, Darwin began to imagine a potential link between that specialized flower structure and an equally specialized pollinator. He knew, as we know now, that nectar is the reward that plants provide to encourage other organisms to visit and pollinate them. But with the reward hidden so deep within its nectary, the star orchid had created quite the conundrumfor Darwin and any conceivable Malagasy insect.

Although its not ranked among his best-known quotes, Darwin ruminated about the star orchid in a letter to a friend, Good Heavens what insect can suck it? Then, just days later, he wrote back with an answer to his own question: moths with probosces capable of extension to a length of between ten and eleven inches.

At the time, it was nothing more than a prediction. But then, in 1907, more than 20 years after Darwins death, a moth fitting his description was discovered in a rainforest of Madagascar. The insect was quickly dubbed Darwins hawkmoth (Xanthopan morganii praedicta), in reference to his now-famous prediction. It would be another 85 years, though, before scientists finally had the photographic evidence to prove that the moth does in fact pollinate the star orchid.

Prior to the summerof 2014, photographer Mac Stone hadnt given ghost orchids much thought. Sure, he knew of the plants. But, as a native Floridian who, like Ward, had devoted much of his career to connecting people to the wild beauty of his state, he had plenty of other fascinating species to photograph.

Andrei Sourakov, an entomologist at the University of Florida, displays moth specimens from the Museum of Natural History in Gainesville. The giant sphinx moth, the largest moth in the center of the tray, was long thought to be the sole pollinator for the ghost orchid. (Credit: Mac Stone)

Stone, 35, grew up in north-central Floridas college town of Gainesville. As a kid, he pedaled his bicycle to local creeks and hammocks to explore the wild places that few visitors or residents ever encounter. In the beginning, the photographs he took with his fathers old film camera mostly served to verify what he said he had seen on those daily adventures. Before long, though, he began to appreciate the power that photography had to enhance a storyand perhaps, to alter its outcome.

When Stone was just 15 years old, a group of property owners asked if he might be willing to help in their bid to protect a local creek from development. While a city council meeting is about the last place an outdoorsy kid would want to spend an afternoon, Stone gave what he describes now as his very first keynote. In the end, the bid to save the creek was only partially successful, but for Stone, the experience made an indelible impression. Very early on, I saw the power of photography to change minds, he says

Since that time, Stone has spent the past two decades showcasing not only Floridas iconic species, but the unique ecosystems in which they live. Thats what brought him to Big Cypress National Preserve, just across State Road 29 from the Florida Panther Refuge, in June of 2014. At the time, he was working on the last few images he needed to complete a book project about the Everglades. And given the ghost orchids notoriety, rarity, and reliance on swamps, it was a shot he desperately wanted.

Tropical ecologist Peter Houlihan inspects the proboscis of a giant sphinx moth, a species long believed to be the only pollinator of the ghost orchid. Its proboscis is twice the length of its body, allowing it to access nectar stored deep inside flowers like the ghost orchid and the moonflower. (Credit: Mac Stone)

Ghost orchids arent the types of organisms one just stumbles upon, and these days, the whereabouts of known individuals are generally kept secret. But Stone had contacts at the various refuges in South Florida, and after placing a few calls, eventually found himself wading into Big Cypress swamp with photographer Chris Evans, who knew the area inside out.

The orchids they found that day, Stones first, didnt disappoint. They were in full bloom, dancing in the thick, mosquito-filled air above the tea-colored water. As Stone took pictures, he found himself reflecting on the basics of ghost orchid natural history: the pond apple (Annona glabra) and pop ash trees the plants prefer as hosts; the fact that theyre generally found in clusters, a result of the way their dust-like seeds scatter in the faint breeze; and the role that water in the swamp plays in moderating the temperature of the microhabitats where cold-sensitive ghost orchids live in the event of rare South Florida freezes.

In addition to what Stone already knew about the orchids, Evans shared two additional pieces of information that day that caught Stones attention. He noted that on average only 10 percent of ghost orchid plants bloom in any given year, and that, of those, only 10 percent will be pollinated. Evans went on to say that the orchid has only one known pollinator, the giant sphinx moth (Cocytius antaeus)although, he said, pollination by that species or any other had never been verified. While a 2008 video captured by ghost orchid aficionado Chris Little seemed to show a giant sphinx visiting a ghost orchid, scientists had deemed the footage inconclusive, both in terms of the species of the moth and whether or not it had pollinated the orchid.

On one level, Stone was fascinated purely because of the opportunity to solve a longstanding puzzle. But he also knew that learning more about the ghost orchids pollinator could be critical to ongoing efforts to conserve it. Among the many reasons that ghost orchids are struggling to survive and reproduce is thatthese days, at leastthey rarely produce seed pods. Less than 5 percent of the 2,000 or so known ghost orchids in Florida manage to do so.

Under the veil of night, ecologist Peter Houlihan inspects a light trap designed to attract nocturnal insects in Corkscrew Swamp. Minutes after this image was captured, a giant sphinx moth flew to the trap, the first time in six years of light trapping that Houlihan managed to attract one. (Credit: Mac Stone)

Were seeing extremely sporadic and low levels of seed pod formation, says Mike Kane, a University of Florida scientist who leads a project to propagate ghost orchids in captivity and, in collaboration with Danahers team, reintroduce them to the wild. While the team has had great success growing ghost orchids in their lab, and while more than half of the young orchids theyve affixed to swamp trees have survived, their transplants cant reproduce if they dont make seed pods. The big issue is probably pollinators. The pollinators have to be there to pollinate, or its not going to happen.

Inspired by the mystery and mesmerized by the rare plants seemingly terrible odds of reproducing in the wild, Stone devised a plan. He remembers calling Ward, who had been a mentor and occasional collaborator over the years, to unveil his approach to capturing the first-ever image of the ghost orchids pollinator. He would use remotely operated camera traps, he said, and would sleep out in the swamp for as long as it took.

What he didnt know at the time was that, like so many other great ideas, this one would find its way onto a back burner until inspirationand another book projectwould put the ghost orchid squarely in his sights once again.

Its no accidentthat the stories told about ghost orchid pollination sound so similar to the oft-recited tale of the star orchid and Darwins hawkmoth. Like their Malagasy counterparts, ghost orchids also have long nectar tubesabout 13.5 centimeters (5.3 inches) on averageand giant sphinx moths have similarly long tongues. Even so, the confirmation of one specialized relationship does not automatically confirm another a continent away, says tropical ecologist Peter Houlihan, who has studied orchid-pollinator relationships in both Madagascar and South Florida. In Houlihans mind, the narrative about Floridas famous orchid and its pollinator has long been one of those just-so stories it sounds nice, and so it is, he says. But the scientific collections he studied at the Florida Museum of Natural History suggested a more complex story. It doesnt take long to realize that there are other hawkmoths in South Florida that have a proboscis length that could pollinate these orchids.

To test these ideas, rather than simply debate them, Houlihan went to the best place he knew of to catch ghost orchid pollinators in the act: the Fakahatchee Strand. While his expectations of success might not have been overly high when he first entered the swamp in July of 2014, he did so with a good amount of time on his hands and what must have been uncanny resolve and patience.

Under the veil of night, ecologist Peter Houlihan inspects a light trap designed to attract nocturnal insects in Corkscrew Swamp. Minutes after this image was captured, a giant sphinx moth flew to the trap, the first time in six years of light trapping that Houlihan managed to attract one. (Credit: Mac Stone)

The Everglades in midsummer is, by all accounts, an unrelenting environment. Never mind the waist-deep water, alligators, and poisonous snakes, the heat, humidity, and mosquitoes are, in Houlihans understated terms, impressive. Despite the challenges, which were magnified by his decision to forgo insect repellent (he didnt want to deter would-be pollinators as they homed in on the orchids scent), Houlihan endured. For 23 long nights, he sat atop a ladder, being eaten alive, waiting to trigger a camera trained on an orchid bloomdesperately hoping a pollinator, any pollinator, would appear from out of the darkness. It never happened.

Clearly, a different strategy would be required to catch the ghost orchids pollinator in the act, and Ward, like Stone, thought camera traps were the answer. Scientists were still trying to unravel this mystery, says Ward, and I had the tools to help do it. In 2016, he took some of the camera traps he had originally intended to use on Florida panthers and started training them on ghost orchids in the Fakahatchee Strand. While his camera traps were a dramatic improvement over Houlihans ladder-and-patience approach, they werent without their own set of challenges. Capturing a small, fast-flying insect in focus is difficult even in the best of circumstances, let alone at night, with no ability to adjust your framing. And other wildlife often made matters worse.

Once, while setting up one of his camera traps, Ward had to throw a water bottle at an alligator that came far too close for comfort. On another occasion, a dense cloud of mosquitoes became a new kind of annoyance. I had tremendous trouble getting the orchid to stay still enough for a long exposure, Ward explained, because the wing beats of the mosquitoes were creating enough wind that the thing was just kind of dancing around.

But the biggest challenge Ward faced is that orchids bloom so infrequently and unpredictably. In any given year, most ghost orchids never produce a flower, and those that do usually unfurl just one, two, or three blooms in a seductive, but brief, summer display. Wards shots on goal were extremely limited, and he was still figuring out how to adjust his camera traps to deal with the specific challenges of photographing a nocturnal moth. It wasnt until his third summer of tweaking and mosquito-swatting that his unlikely quest to capture the ghost orchids pollinator on film began to show any real signs of a potential payoff. Its almost embarrassing to think about how many hours Ive spent going after such a chance, he reflects.

Conservation photographer Mac Stone used a camera trap to capture the first-ever photo of a giant sphinx moth visiting a ghost orchid. His early rig (pictured here) was attached to a tree branch. Later he had a special treepod manufactured that could be attached directly to the trunk of the tree. (Credit: Peter Houlihan)

Not far away, in an Audubon Society reserve called Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary, the odds of success were actually significantly better. There, a ghost orchid exists that is quite unlike any of Wards ephemeral subjects. Affectionately dubbed the super ghost, this robust plant, which is likely a cluster of three separate orchids, is renowned in orchid circles around the world. While most ghost orchids cling to gnarled trunks of pond apple and pop ash trees just a few feet above the waters surface, the super ghost is perched 50 feet up on the side of a stately, old bald cypress tree (Taxodium distichum). And while most ghost orchids bloom sporadically, if at all, the super ghost never seems to miss a beat. It has bloomed in every month of the year, although still most heavily during the summer, and has produced as many as 40 flowers in a single year.

In the fall of 2017, Stone was working in the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary as part of a new book project on old-growth cypress forests. Hurricane Irma had just hit the area hard, creating a sea of toppled cypress trees covered in epiphytes. Im walking around and Im seeing all of these orchids on canopies that have fallen down, and I started thinking, Well, dang. I should just start climbing some of these, says Stone. Thats when he first saw the super ghost up close. Immediately, he dove back into his temporarily shelved goal to photograph the ghost orchids pollinator. He couldnt resist the opportunity to depict how and where ghost orchids might have lived before wide-scale logging decimated the regions forests.

With its profusion of blooms, Stone believed the super ghost would provide the ideal opportunity to capture pollination in action, and he had plenty of camera trapping experience to bring to the project. Hed just never rigged a camera trap 50 feet in the air before. After doing some initial research, he reached out to Houlihan for advice. Because of his past efforts, Houlihan was intimately familiar with the biology of ghost orchids and their potential pollinators, and he could consult about camera angles and the most likely timing of pollination visits.

Still, it wasnt easy. Its a blessing that there are so many blooms, because it means there are more chemical smells going out, more things to alert potential pollinators that this is in bloom and it has nectar, says Stone. But at the same time its a curse, because you cannot zero in on something. You cannot say for sure, This bloom will get pollinated, this one has yet to be pollinated. You just dont know.

For Stone, who now lives in South Carolina, one of the most consuming challenges was the anxiety of setting a camera trap and then walking away, sometimes for days at a time, with no control over what might happen next. Its an understatement to say how stressed out I was. I wasnt sleeping that whole summer, says Stone. Id come home and I would sit there in bed at night and think, Shit, I think I turned the sensor off and I dont remember turning it back on. You know, like you left the iron on or something. But the iron is in another state, and youre going to lose way more than your house. And so I would book a flight the next day and go unplug my iron.

Despite the hardships, whether they occurred waist-deep in swamp water or at dizzying heights, all three of themHoulihan, Ward, and Stonewere determined to stick with it. There is no easy orchid. There is no easy effort, which is kind of what makes this so exciting, Stone says now. For a photographer, the challenge of making the photo is what makes the image and the whole project alluring.

When Ward paddledinto the swamp to check his orchid cameras early last July, he had a pretty good idea what to expect. Camera traps can be triggered by anything from falling raindrops and rustling leaves to buzzing mosquitoes, and that can result in monotonous timelapse sequences of nothing in particular. The ultra-sensitive LIDAR trigger that Ward was using on his ghost orchid traps only made that problem worse.

Balancing atop his paddleboard, Ward settled in as best he could and began to scroll back through the preceding hours and nights, watching as thousands of nearly identical images flashed past the screen on the back of the camera. Then, suddenly, a burst of activity. In back-to-back photos, Ward saw the orchid bounce entirely out of the frame, first down and then up. Im like, What in the world is going on?, he says. In the next two photos, he sees a little frog, first hanging off of the orchid, and then hunkering down on a leaf belowwith a bit of orchid petal in its mouthafter its unsuccessful attempt to catch a spider.

The camera revealed other activity around the orchid that week, too. You had itty-bitty moths that were just kind of hovering in space. You had medium-sized moths that were actually landing on the flower, but seemingly had no capability to get any nectar. While these werent quite the images Ward was hoping for, they were an inspiring proof of concept that his approach and his equipment were workingand they were beginning to paint a more complete picture of the ghost orchid and, as Ward describes it, the microcosm that happens around this bloom.

This photo, captured in the summer of 2018, was the first to show a pawpaw sphinx moth probing and likely pollinating a ghost orchid bloom. A pollinium (pollen cluster) from the ghost orchid is visible on the moth's head. (Credit: Carlton Ward Jr.)

The super ghost was starting to produce results, too. Like Ward, Stone had settled in to the routine of checking his camera, often daily in his case, to tweak angles, change batteries, clear spider webs from his lens, and hope that something, anything, had flown into his camera frame, only to find a sea of monotonous flower portraits.

While there was no reason to expect anything different on that mid-July morning, he was always hopeful on his climbs up to check his traplike a kid on Christmas morning, he says. With Houlihan coming up the tree just a few feet behind, Stone reached the camera, opened the back of the waterproof case, and began scrolling through the images. And there it was, like a figment of his imagination, a huge moth nearly filling the camera frame: the giant sphinx. Though the first image he saw was out of focus, Stone recognized the insect in an instant. I remember my heart jumping, he says. He had seen countless pictures of them before, but never on one of his cameras, and never in the proximity of a ghost orchid. Indeed, the image was the first of its kind.

It was a triumphant moment, but Stone and Houlihan quickly began to scrutinize every detail about that photo and the handful of other images the camera had captured during the moths second-long visit. Stone couldnt help critiquing the quality of the photos and thinking about how he might adjust his system to do better. But more importantly, they each looked for clues about how the moth had interacted with the orchid, analyzing every detail and trying to infer meaning from what they did or didnt see in those brief moments in time.

A giant sphinx moth extends its proboscis to drink the nectar from a ghost orchid. (Credit: Mac Stone)

One thing they noticed is that even while the moth was apparently feeding, with its proboscis deep inside the nectar tube, its head was nowhere near the flower itself. And the orchids pollinium, the bright yellow packet of pollen that the flower produces, was nowhere to be seen. Instead, the giant sphinx was dusted with a fine, gray powder, most likely the pollen of a moonflower (Ipomoea alba), another of the swamps bright, white blooms, but far more plentiful. While Houlihan was careful not to make sweeping conclusions based on a few still photos, he says that even these early observations suggested a relationship between the ghost orchid and the giant sphinx that is far less specialized than was once suspected.

The results continued. After so many years of disappointment, especially for Houlihan, it felt like things had finally started to click. Both Stone and Ward were getting steady results. The key frames were still few and far between, gems amidst thousands of discards, but, considering the odds that they all knew so well, it was a veritable flood. More often than not, the large moths flooding in were not the giant sphinx moths many people had long suspected.

All told over the course of the summer, during nearly 7,000 camera-trap hours, Ward and Stone documented visits from five different species of large hawkmoth, two of which clearly carried ghost orchid pollinia. One of these, the fig sphinx moth (Pachylia ficus), was practically a regular, showing up at ghost orchids multiple times, both in the Fakahatchee and at Corkscrew, often with ghost orchid pollinia on its head. Whats more, the super ghost and at least two of Wards orchids in the Fakahatchee also produced seed pods last summer. I came back, three or four weeks had passed since those original pictures, and two of the flowers actually had seed pods on them, Ward says. We know pollination occurred.

Captured on July 5, 2018, this was the first photograph to document pollination of a ghost orchid bloom. Contrary to the expectations of many experts, who believed that the giant sphinx moth was likely the only pollinator of the ghost orchid, this moth is a fig sphinx. The yellow bundle on its head is a ghost orchid pollinium (pollen cluster). (Credit: Carlton Ward Jr.)

What Houlihan found to be particularly intriguing about these results is that the fig sphinx has a significantly shorter proboscis than the giant sphinxjust 4 centimeters (1.6 inches) compared to the giant sphinxs 10.1 centimeters (4 inches). Still, it could clearly pollinate the ghost orchid. And Houlihan has identified more than a dozen other moth species in the region that have probosces at least as long as that found on the fig sphinx. As he and coauthors noted ina paper published inScientific Reportsthis year, serving multiple pollinators, rather than catering to a single species, may give the few remaining ghost orchids left in the Everglades a better chance of survival.

As for the moths, their survival is at stake, too. Butterfly and moth diversity and abundance both tend to be relatively low in swamp forests globally, and the Everglades is no exception. Here, only three species of flowering plants are known to be pollinated at night by hawkmoths: the ghost orchid, the moonflower, and the Florida swamp lily (Crinium americanum). Given the extreme rarity of the ghost orchid, the other two species are likely important nectar sources for the Everglades hawkmothsmeaning that the ghost orchid is dependent not just on its pollinators, but also on healthy populations of these other native plants for its survival

As Houlihan and I discuss the meaning and significance of the teams results, Im reminded of my earlier conversation with Mark Danaher, and his hope that the ghost orchid could be a species that saves an entire ecosystem. With these new findings, pointing to interdependencies that are far more complex than scientists previously realized, that possibility feels both more real and more important.

Saving the ghost orchid, this species that captivates admirers around the world, will require more than just propagation and reintroduction efforts. It will require holistic habitat management, including thinking differently about the orchids multiple pollinators. In one of the most rapidly urbanizing states in the nation, people dont like mosquitoes, and they constantly spray, says Danaher. If we dont keep pollinators in mind, we could lose those critical pollinators that are necessary for ghost orchids to perpetuate themselves.

It will also require guarding, vigilantly, what little remains of Floridas wild Everglades. While Ward, Danaher, and I crunched our way through the dry Fakahatchee this spring, Ward received a phone call from a colleague who shared news that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis had just approved a new road proposal that would carve three corridors through the states undeveloped areas and undermine Everglades restoration efforts. Ward will be fighting it every step of the way. Were in the wildest part of the Everglades, where you have this sanctuary of beauty and inspiration and hope, a glimpse of this primordial world the way it used to be, says Ward. But the threats to this place are not right here. The threats are around the edges. When the road-planning discussions begin, I want them to know that the world is watching.

[This story originally appeared on bioGraphic]

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Searching for the Ghost Orchids of the Everglades - Discover Magazine

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Actionable Insights on Artificial Intelligence in Law Market with Future Growth Prospects by 2026 | AIBrain, Amazon, Anki, CloudMinds, Deepmind,…

According to a report on Artificial Intelligence in Law Market, recently added to the vast repository of Research N Reports, the global market is likely to gain significant impetus in the near future. The report, titled Global Artificial Intelligence in Law Market Research Report 2019, further explains the major drivers manipulating industry, the possibility of development, and the challenges going up against the administrations and industrialists in the market. This research study portrays an all-encompassing valuation of the global Artificial Intelligence in Law Market, taking several market verticals such as the dynamics of demand and supply, sales volume, production capacity, revenue, product pricing, and the growth rate of this market into consideration.

Ask for sample copy of this report@

Profiling Key players: AIBrain, Amazon, Anki, CloudMinds, Deepmind, Google, Facebook, IBM, Iris AI, Apple, Microsoft, Intel.

The report also covers the trends in development activities in the Artificial Intelligence in Law Market, which includes the status of marketing channels available, the details of traders and distributors still functioning, and an analysis of the regional export and import. The data drafted in the report has been collected by conducting intensive primary and secondary research, along with underlining the top segments. The rest of the information is collected from case studies, press releases, high-quality white papers, and interviews with c-level industrial executives.

The competitive landscape has been scrutinized carefully as it forms a major factor contributing to the revenue generation. The key players such as Asia Pacific (APAC), Europe, North America, Middle East & Africa (MEA), and Latin America form the key global regions of which, the region showcasing as the one generating highest market share and the one which is the fastest growing is also described in detail. It serves as a document providing the necessary insights to vendors, therefore enabling them to make data-driven decisions and avoid business losses.

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The Report provides:

Table of Contents:

Conclusively, the report describes the performance of the key product and application segments in the Artificial Intelligence in Law Market in each regional market. Likewise, the competitive dynamics of each regional market have been elaborated by providing information on the hierarchy among the major players operating within it. This provides a thorough and detailed analysis of the global market. The report also provides forecasts for 2014-2026 for each product, application and geographical segment of the global market.

For more information ask our experts @

If you have any special requirements, please let us know and we will offer you the report as per your requirements.

About Research N Reports:

Research N Reports is a new age market research firm where we focus on providing information that can be effectively applied. Today being a consumer-driven market, companies require information to deal with the complex and dynamic world of choices, where relying on a soundboard firm for your decisions becomes crucial. Research N Reports specializes in industry analysis, market forecasts and as a result getting quality reports covering all verticals, whether be it gaining perspective on current market conditions or being ahead in the cutthroat global competition. Since we excel at business research to help businesses grow, we also offer to consult as an extended arm to our services which only helps us gain more insight into current trends and problems. Consequently, we keep evolving as an all-rounder provider of viable information under one roof.

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Actionable Insights on Artificial Intelligence in Law Market with Future Growth Prospects by 2026 | AIBrain, Amazon, Anki, CloudMinds, Deepmind,...

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The alarming trip that changed Jeremy Clarksons mind on climate change – The Week UK

Jeremy Clarkson has revealed he now believes in climate change following a moment of epiphanywhile filming his motoring showin Cambodia.

The former sceptic says he andhisThe Grand Tourco-stars were confronted by a graphic demonstration of global warming as they triednavigate the Mekong river system during a 500-mile boat race from Siem Reap to Vietnam - only to discover that the river had been reduced to a puddle.

Clarkson toldThe Sunday Timesthat his groups jet boatswere left stranded in knee-deep water in CambodiasTonle Sap lake, so we had two days of absolute frustration - being towed and grounding.

For a round-up of the most important stories from around the world - and a concise, refreshing and balanced take on the weeks news agenda - try The Week magazine. Start your trial subscription today

Describing his genuinely alarming experience, the former Top Gear presenter continued:The irony is not lost on me. A man who hosted a car programme for 30 years, limited to 7mph by global warming.

Clarkson has been targeted by environmental campaigners on multiple occasions in the past over his views on climate change. In 2005, he admitted that the world is warming up but claimed it isnt even worthy of a shrug, The Independent reports.

He has also drawn criticism for his comments on 16-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg, whom he recently called a spoilt brat in his column for The Sun.

Despite his U-turn on climate change, Clarkson took another shot at Thunberg during his Sunday Times interview, saying that he doesnt blame mankind for the crisis before adding: Well let Greta do that.

Such digs aside, Clarksons global warming awakeningis just the latest leg in the petrolheads eco journey, saystheDaily Star.He has also claimed to be carbon-neutral thanks to crops and hedgerows planted on his 1,000-acre Oxfordshire farm, andearlier this year took part in a beach clean-up in Vietnam.

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Worlds Last Male Northern White Rhino Brought Back To Life Using AI – International Business Times

London's Royal Academy of Arts roped in artists, designers and architects to address the ongoing climate crisis in its exhibition, "Eco-Visionaries: Confronting a planet in a state of emergency". London-based artist Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg unveiled a life-size digital replica of a northern white male rhino. Sudan, the last rhino of his kind in the world, was euthanized in March 2018 in the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya, owing to age-related poor health.

Ginsberg first learned of 45-year-old Sudans death in a Twitter post which motivated her to bring him back to life using artificial intelligence (AI). Ginsberg used zoo archive footage and computer models as well as important research from Google-acquired AI firm Deepmind create the almost 16 feet 4 inches (5 meters) projection.

Sudan is now "basically a rhino in a box" manifesting signs of a living creature that learns from its environment, CNN quoted Ginsberg.

"Why can't we look after what we have? These stories are so urgent. We need to change our behavior. And it's up to us to tell governments," she told CNN. "We're not doing well."

In the six-minute long video installation, viewers can hear the rhino's snorts and sense his bulk and weight. The rhino may also make brief eye-contacts with visitors.

"As the artificial rhino habituates to its space, its form and sound toggle from pixilation to lifelike reminding the viewer that this living, breathing rhino, coming to life without its natural context, is entirely artificial," the installation's description states.

"Eco-Visionaries" is a collaboration between five museums, including Fundao EDP/MAAT, Bildmuseet, HeK and LABoral, featuring 21 participants.

rhinoceros - sumatran rhino dies officially extinct Photo: Free Photos - Pixabay

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Eat, drink, and be merryonly if you keep in mind these food safety tips – Williamsburg Yorktown Daily

(WYDaily file/Courtesy of Pexels)

Thanksgiving is a big cooking holiday with the main course being the most labor intensive: the turkey.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cites food handling errors and inadequate cooking are the most common problems that lead to poultry-associated food borne disease outbreaks in the United States.

They recommend these four food safety tips to help safely prepare your next holiday turkey meal.

The CDC recommends that you thaw your turkeys in the refrigerator, in a skin of cold water that is changed every 30 minutes or in the microwave.

They say to never thaw a turkey by leaving it out on the counter.

A frozen turkey is safe indefinitely, but a thawing turkey must defrost at a safe temperature.

When the turkey is left out at room temperature for more than two hours, its temperature becomes unsafe as it moves into the danger zone between 40F and 140F, where bacteria can grow rapidly.

Raw poultry can contaminate anything it touches with harmful bacteria. Follow the four steps to food safety cook, clean, chill, and separate to prevent the spread of bacteria to your food and family.

Cooking stuffing in a casserole dish makes it easy to make sure it is thoroughly cooked.

If you put stuffing in the turkey, do so just before cooking.

Use a food thermometer to make sure the stuffings center reaches 165F. Bacteria can survive in stuffing that has not reached 165F and may then cause food poisoning.

Wait for 20 minutes after removing the bird from the oven before removing the stuffing from the turkeys cavity; this allows it to cook a little more.

Learn more about how toprepare stuffingsafely.

Set the oven temperature to at least 325F.

Place the completely thawed turkey with the breast side up in a roasting pan that is 2 to 2-1/2 inches deep.

Cooking times will vary depending on the weight of the turkey.

To make sure the turkey has reached a safe internal temperature of 165F, check by inserting a food thermometer into the center of the stuffing and the thickest portions of the breast, thigh, and wing joint.

Let the turkey stand 20 minutes before removing all stuffing from the cavity and carving the meat.

Learn more aboutsafe minimum cooking temperaturesand how to use afood thermometerfor turkey and other foods.

Editors note: This story was originally published in November 2018.

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Listen To Two Neck Deep B-Sides, Beautiful Madness And Worth It – Kerrang!

While were still patiently awaiting news on a new Neck Deep album, the Wrexham pop-punks are tiding fans over with two brilliant B-sides, Beautiful Madness and WorthIt.

The songs are taken from from their The Peace And The Panic album, in a package that was released in 2017 on a bonus version of the record made available at the likes of Target in America. If you werent able to pick up a copy, then you can stream both online right now in a lovely little EP titled The Peace And The B-sides. Nicely done,chaps.

Read this next: Neck Deeps Ben Barlow: The 10 songs that changed mylife

Stream Beautiful Madness and Worth Itbelow:

Earlier in the year, we caught up with Neck Deeps Ben Barlow to get an update on album number four, with the frontman telling Kerrang! that he initially felt a lot of pressure going into the new record, but things have since calmeddown.

Oh, Im much more confident now! the vocalist said. Weve actually written a lot. While we were doing the main bulk of the touring for The Peace And The Panic, we didnt want to be in album mode before that was all done. Youre not always ready for that, and you have to put yourself in a creative space or get yourself in the right mindset. We had such an experience recording The Peace And The Panic it was born in a pressure cooker, pretty much that we were just like, Lets not think about the album lets think about it when everyone has ideas to put forward. That time came and everyone was writing really good shit (laughs). We started compiling everything we had two or three months ago, and were making very good progress. Its still gonna be a while off, because we want to make sure that its the absolute best it can be, but theres plenty of good shit floatingaround!

As for where Neck Deep are going musically? Things are probably going to be a bit different a move inspired by both outside music that the band have been listening to, and also their general ambitions to grow evenmore.

Everyones on the same page: that it needs to be a little different, and its a culmination of where we feel like we can progress as a band, as well as taking inspiration from music that we listen to, Ben explained. I think youd be surprised by some of the influences and the things that weve been writing! But its still gonna be a Neck Deep record; were not going to be doing anything mind-blowingly crazy, because thats just not us. Id love to make a fucking crazy prog-rock record or some shit like that, but thats not Neck Deep, you know? As long as that core thing that makes it us is there, thats the most important thing. On this one its definitely there were not going to stray super far away, but its a good stepforward.

Read this next: The 51 greatest pop-punk albums of alltime

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Listen To Two Neck Deep B-Sides, Beautiful Madness And Worth It - Kerrang!

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