Thailand

first_img May 12, 2021 Find out more Red alert for green journalism – 10 environmental reporters killed in five years Receive email alerts Thai premier, UN rapporteurs asked to prevent journalists being returned to Myanmar RSF_en August 21, 2020 Find out more The spring 2010 crisis had a negative impact on online freedom of expression. The state of emergency was marked by an escalation of censorship, while the various factions continue to use the lèse majesté crime against their political opponents, allegedly to protect the King and to ensure the country’s stability. It is dangerous, even under normal circumstances, to discuss the King or his family in Thailand. In a period of crisis, the risks are monumental. His image is even more protected than usual. Anyone who dares to malign his reputation will be charged with lèse majesté. Article 112 of the Thailand Penal Code provides for a sentence of from three to fourteen years against “whoever defames, insults or threatens the king, the queen, the heir-apparent or the regent.” The most dissuasive aspect is the conviction rate, which is approximately 95%. Most of the time, the defendants prefer to plead guilty, which reduces their sentence, and then request the royal pardon.On 15 June 2010, the Thai government approved the creation of an agency specialised in cracking down attempts to malign the monarchy’s image on the Internet, the Bureau of Prevention and Eradication of Computer Crime. The authorities justified its creation by explaining that “the monarchy is crucial for Thai national security because it is an institution that unifies the entire nation.”This agency has strengthened an already dissuasive legislative arsenal, including the lèse majesté (criminal) law and the 2007 Computer Crimes Act. Internet users will pay a high price because of it.A dozen netizens caught in a vicious legal circleAccording to the December 2010 iLaw Project report, 31 cases of lèse majesté have been recorded, eleven of which violated an article of the Computer Crimes Act. A judgement was rendered in four such cases, court proceedings are underway in three others, and twenty-four of them are still in the investigative stage. Sixteen of these cases were instigated by the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology.In these cases, a dozen Internet users were being prosecuted for violating the lèse majesté laws or the Cyber Crimes Act. Among them were Jonathan Head, a British BBC correspondent in Southeast Asia who has since left Thailand, Giles Ji Ungpakorn, a political science professor who has sought asylum in Great Britain and Nat Sattayapornpisut, a blogger. Another case is Praya Pichai, who was prosecuted for offending a foreign Head of State, namely Kim Jong-Il, North Korea’s leader. He pleaded guilty and was given a suspended prison sentence. On the other hand, Tasaparn Rattawongsa, a doctor at Thon Buri Hospital ; Theeranan Wipuchan, a former UBS Securities executive ; Katha Pajajiriyapong, an employee at the KTZMICO brokerage house ; and Somchets Ittiworakul are all charged under section 14 of the 2007 Computer Crime Act with posting “false information endangering national security.” The netizens had explained the steep fall in the Bangkok stock market last October by the poor health of King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who had been hospitalised since September 2009.The most widely covered lawsuit to date concerns Chiranuch Premchaiporn (nicknamed Jiew), director of the online news website Prachatai, who has been the target of a genuine judicial harassment campaign. Twice charged in two different cases, she risks being given a prison sentence of up to 70 years. First of all, Jiew stands accused of violating the Computer Crimes Act and of having taken too long to remove ten comments about the crime of lèse majesté posted on the website between April and August 2008. By virtue of this law, Internet website owners will henceforth be liable for statements made by visitors to their sites. They must assume the legal consequences in court. Chiranuch Premchaiporn is facing a 20-year prison term. Her trial will begin on 4 February 2011.A second complaint against her was filed on 28 April 2008 by Syunimit Chirasuk, a Khon Kaen province resident, because of comments associated with an interview – published by Prachatai – of Chotisak Onsoong. The latter was charged with lèse majesté for failing to stand when the national anthem was played before the showing of a film in a movie theatre. As the website’s director, Chiranuch Premchaipoen is charged with “defaming, insulting and threatening the King and the royal family” (lèse majesté), and of having “ made public statements inciting disorder” (Article 112 of the Thai Penal Code)). Internet user Suwicha Thakor, sentenced on 3 April 2009 to 10 years in prison for a “lèse-majesté crime,” was pardoned by the King on 28 June 2010. He was accused of having disseminated on the Web photos which the Royal Family deemed “offensive.” Thanthawuthi Thaweewarodom, webmaster of a “ red” website, was arrested on lèse majesté charges on 1 April 2010 by virtue of the Computer Crime Act. His verdict should be known on March 16, 2011. Warawout Tanangkorn (Suchart Nakbangsai), a “red shirt” activist, pled guilty and was sentenced to three years in prison on 24 November 2010. He will ask for a royal pardon.These multiple prosecutions are also intended to intimidate other Internet users likely to criticise the King and to force them to practice self-censorship. Other netizens have been briefly arrested or interrogated, but their exact number is difficult to determine, because many of those charged are avoiding any publicity for fear of reprisals and the authorities are obliged to open an inquiry whenever a lèse majesté complaint is filed.Despite the fact that the country is emerging from a serious crisis, the authorities response in the form of an upsurge in the use of censorship, is not a solution likely to favour national reconciliation. An urgent reform of the archaic lèse majesté law and Computer Crimes Act is needed. Only then will journalists and netizens be able to fulfill their role of informing the public, denouncing the authorities’ abuses, and discussing the country’s future without having a “sword of Damocles” suspended over their heads. Help by sharing this information News Follow the news on Thailand March 11, 2011 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Thailandcenter_img News Organisation June 12, 2020 Find out more State of emergency and censorshipA state of emergency was imposed on 7 April and lifted on 22 December 2010, but it was replaced by the Internal Security Act (ISA) which provides Thailand’s leaders and the army with the means to censor without having to resort to judicial procedures.While the state of emergency was being imposed, in many Thai provinces and notably in Bangkok, control was considerably intensified over the media affiliated with, or with close ties to, the “Red Shirt” movement – led by partisans of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra. A TV network and some radio stations, Internet websites and publications were censored, banned and forcibly shut down or are involved in legal proceedings. Most of these media supported the « Red Shirts » demonstrations and even occasionally called for insurrection, but they also relayed the legitimate demands of a part of the Thai society. Although it is to be the public prosecutor’s office is entitled to prosecute media outlets which circulted calls for violence, any sentence brought against a media outlet should have been issued by judicial authorities, which was not the case at the height of the crisis. Even though the Internet websites of the leading Thai media outlets were not affected by the were not censored, alternative sources suspected of backing the Red Shirts’ movement were sometimes rendered inaccessible. The situation differed from one Internet service provider to the next. Official sites such as uddthailand.com or norporchorusa.com and news sources such as thaienews.blogspot.com or thaifreenews2.com were blocked. The website www.nocoup.org, moderated by the Red Shirt activist Sombat Boonngamanong, was closed on the day the state of emergency was declared. Spaces conveying statements by charismatic opposition leaders were specifically targeted, for example the Facebook page of former union leader Somyos Pruksakasemsuk.The independent news website Prachatai, which supplied first-rate coverage of the events as they unfolded, was also censored and had to change its URL address several times in order to keep its online website active prachatai.com became prachatai.net, then prachatai.info and most recently prachatai2.info. From the moment the crisis began in mid-March 2010, the news site, as well as its page on the social networks Facebook and Twitter, were blocked countless times by the Center for Resolution of Emergency Situation (CRES).From then on, online censorship reached new heights. An exact figure is difficult to determine, but it is estimated that from 80,000 to 400,000 URLs were blocked in January 2011. According to the iLaw Project report, 74,686 URLs were blocked by court order between July 2007 and July 2010. This number excludes the sites which the Thai police and army blocked without a court order (which is permitted under a state of emergency or the State of Security Act). The situation has scarcely changed since the state of emergency was lifted. Surveillance is becoming the normUnder normal circumstances, the Internet is controlled and monitored by the Thai Ministry of Information and Communication Technology, which blocks those sites which it deems offensive, mainly those charged with violating the lèse majesté law. However, since the authorities view this crime as an offence against national security, the army and police force are also implicated. Informing is also encouraged. Internet users can denounce any site which commits a lèse majesté crime by telephone, simply by calling 1111, the number of the Prime Minister’s cabinet, or by accessing websites. The Ministry of Justice also created a “Cyber Scouts” unit consisting of volunteers who monitor the Internet and denounce activities which, according to the authorities, should not occur there. The authorities plan to train several hundred Cyber Scouts. Revival of crime of lèse majestéKing Bhumibol Adulyadej is revered by the population. He is considered as the guarantor of the unity of a country accustomed to changes in government. There are serious concerns about his state of health. During his last public appearance – the first in months – he offered his New Year greetings seated in a wheelchair. The subject is virtually never mentioned in the press: it is practicing self-censorship from fear of being charged with lèse majesté. News ThailandAsia – Pacific News to go further ThailandAsia – Pacific Covid-19 emergency laws spell disaster for press freedomlast_img read more

4D-printed structure changes shape when placed in water

first_imgA team of scientists at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University and the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) has evolved their microscale 3-D printing technology to the fourth dimension, time.Inspired by natural structures like plants, which respond and change their form in response to environmental stimuli, the team has unveiled 4D-printed hydrogel composite structures that change shape when immersed in water.Mimicking nature in 4D Related Reported today in Nature Materials, the 4D printing advance combined materials science and mathematics through the involvement of the study’s co-lead authors: A. Sydney Gladman, a graduate research assistant advised by Lewis and specializing in the printing of polymers and composites at the Wyss Institute and SEAS, and Elisabetta Matsumoto, a postdoctoral fellow at the Wyss and SEAS advised by Mahadevan and specializing in condensed matter and material physics.By aligning cellulose fibrils during printing, the hydrogel composite ink is encoded with anisotropic swelling and stiffness, which can be patterned to produce intricate shape changes. The anisotropic nature of the cellulose fibrils gives rise to varied directional properties that can be predicted and controlled. Just like wood, which splits more easily along the grain than across it, when it is immersed in water the hydrogel-cellulose fibril ink undergoes differential swelling along and orthogonal to the printing path. Combined with a proprietary mathematical model developed by the team that determines how a 4D object must be printed to achieve prescribed transformable shapes, the new method opens up new potential applications for 4D printing technology, including smart textiles, soft electronics, biomedical devices, and tissue engineering.“Using one composite ink printed in a single step, we can achieve shape-changing hydrogel geometries containing more complexity than any other technique, and we can do so simply by modifying the print path,” said Gladman. “What’s more, we can interchange different materials to tune for properties such as conductivity or biocompatibility.”The composite ink the team uses flows like liquid through the printhead, yet rapidly solidifies once printed. A variety of hydrogel materials can be used interchangeably, resulting in different stimuli-response behavior, while the cellulose fibrils can be replaced with other anisotropic fillers, including conductive fillers.“Our mathematical model prescribes the printing pathways required to achieve the desired shape-transforming response,” said Matsumoto. “We can control the curvature both discretely and continuously using our entirely tunable and programmable method.”The mathematical modeling also solves the “inverse problem,” the challenge of predicting what the printing toolpath must be to encode swelling behaviors toward a desired shape.“It is wonderful to be able to design and realize, in an engineered structure, some of nature’s solutions,” said Mahadevan, who has studied phenomena such as how botanical tendrils coil, how flowers bloom, and how pine cones open and close. “By solving the inverse problem, we are now able to reverse-engineer the problem and determine how to vary local inhomogeneity, i.e., the spacing between the printed ink filaments, and the anisotropy, i.e., the direction of these filaments, to control the spatiotemporal response of these shape-shifting sheets.”“What’s remarkable about this 4D printing advance made by Jennifer and her team is that it enables the design of almost any arbitrary, transformable shape from a wide range of available materials with different properties and potential applications, truly establishing a new platform for printing self-assembling, dynamic microscale structures that could be applied to a broad range of industrial and medical applications,” said Wyss Institute Director Donald Ingber, the Judah Folkman Professor of Vascular Biology at Harvard Medical School and the vascular biology program at Boston Children’s Hospital and professor of bioengineering at SEAS.This work was supported by funding from the Army Research Office and the National Science Foundation’s Materials Research Science and Engineering Center. Using a 3-D printer, Harvard researchers create an autonomous soft machine And now, the hopping robot <a href=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Q_Fu1KlVac” rel=”nofollow” target=”_blank”> <img src=”https://img.youtube.com/vi/7Q_Fu1KlVac/0.jpg” alt=”0″ title=”How To Choose The Correct Channel Type For Your Video Content ” /> </a> The method was inspired by the way plants change shape over time in response to environmental stimuli. This orchid-shaped structure is printed with a hydrogel composite ink containing aligned cellulose fibrils, which enable anisotropic swelling. A proprietary mathematical model developed by the team precisely predicts how the fibrils will swell in water. After printing, the 4D orchid is immersed in water to activate its shape transformation. Credit: A.S. Gladman, E. Matsumoto, L.K. Sanders, and J.A. Lewis / Wyss Institute at Harvard University “This work represents an elegant advance in programmable materials assembly, made possible by a multidisciplinary approach,” said Jennifer Lewis, senior author on the new study. “We have now gone beyond integrating form and function to create transformable architectures.”Lewis is a core faculty member at the Wyss Institute and the Hansjörg Wyss Professor of Biologically Inspired Engineering at SEAS. Another Wyss core faculty member, L. Mahadevan, the Lola England de Valpine Professor of Applied Mathematics, professor of organismic and evolutionary biology, and professor of physics at Harvard University and SEAS, is a co-author on the study. Their team also includes co-author Ralph Nuzzo, the G.L. Clark Professor of Chemistry at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.In nature, the tissue composition and microstructures of flowers and plants have dynamic morphologies that change according to their environments. Mimicking the variety of shape changes that plant organs such as tendrils, leaves, and flowers undergo in response to environmental stimuli such as humidity or temperature, the 4D-printed hydrogel composites developed by Lewis and her team are programmed to contain precise, localized swelling. Importantly, the hydrogel composites contain cellulose fibrils that are derived from wood and resemble the microstructures that enable shape changes in plants.last_img read more

Westin Abbey rings up second Lone Star Tour win at Bells

first_imgWestin Abbey raced to his second $1,000 IMCA Sunoco Stock Car feature win in three Sniper Speed Lone Star Tour events Monday at Grayson County Speedway. (Photo by Stacy Kolar, Southern Sass Photography) Dean Abbey used a blueprint similar to Wolla’s in the Southern SportMod feature. He’d worked his way from seventh starting and got stuck in second for a long stretch before crossing the line side-by-side with Rodney White with two laps to go. Dean Abbey, George Egbert III and 14th starting Jeffrey Abbey rounded out the top five. Feature Results Westin Abbey swapped second with Powers before making his way to the front on lap 14. He mastered traffic beginning on lap 18, chased to the $1,000 checkers by the 12th starting Jesse Sobbing.  Sunday winner Derek Green was briefly into the runner-up spot following the second of two lap yellow cautions. Modifieds – 1. Jason Wolla; 2. John Gober; 3. Drew Armstrong; 4. Jesse Sobbing; 5. Anthony Roth; 6. Josh McGaha; 7. Clay Money; 8. Brint Hartwick; 9. Jim Thies, Mapleton; 10. Treven Geter; 11. Michael Ables; 12. Ethan Braaksma; 13. Larry Adams; 14. Jim Cole; 15. Shane DeMey; 16. William Gould; 17. Brandon Aggen; 18. Mark Adams; 19. Jon White Jr.; 20. Mike Petersilie. BELLS, Texas (Feb. 17) – Westin Abbey rang up a second Sniper Speed Lone Star Tour feature win Monday night, getting the best of his IMCA Sunoco Stock Car foes at Grayson County Speedway. Abbey had started 10th in the 30-lap, star-filled field at Bells, passed brother Dean for the lead just before halfway and then worked his way through traffic as the race ended with a long green flag run. Ryan Powers led the first six circuits from the pole before giving way to Dean Abbey, fresh off the win in the Smiley’s Racing Products Southern SportMod main. His last-lap IMCA Modified heroics landed Jason Wolla in Grayson County Speedway’s victory lane. (Photo by Stacy Kolar, Southern Sass Photography) Jason Wolla was the $1,000 IMCA Modified winner, putting his name on the Fast Shafts All-Star Invitational ballot with a last-lap pass of John Gober.  Abbey pulled ahead from that point, collecting the checkers ahead of Rodney White, Mitchell Clement, 12th starting Gregory Muirhead and 15th starting Justin White. Monday’s third installment of the Lone Star Tour drew 70 Stock Car entries from a dozen states, with California newly represented.  The 2017 national champion had chased Gober following an early caution that saw leader and Sunday winner Jon White Jr. exit. Drew Armstrong, Sobbing and Anthony Roth were scored next.  Southern SportMods – 1. Dean Abbey; 2. Rodney White; 3. Mitchell Clement; 4. Gregory Muirhead; 5. Justin White; 6. Jeremy Henry; 7. Brandon Blake; 8. Justin Nabors; 9. Kevin Ward; 10. Ron Hessel; 11. Brantley Beatty; 12. Austen Becerra; 13. Christopher Stewart; 14. Mark Marr; 15. Mark Patterson; 16. Dan Day; 17. Michael McCullough; 18. Mason Day; 19. Matthew Day; 20. Brandon Tharp. Stock Cars – 1. Westin Abbey; 2. Jesse Sobbing; 3. Dean Abbey; 4. George Egbert III; 5. Jeffrey Abbey; 6. Matthew Riskey; 7. Matt Guillaume; 8. Ryan Powers; 9. Chad Schroeder; 10. Eric Rempel; 11. Dean Cornelius; 12. Abe Huls; 13. Jason Batt; 14. Kevin Flock; 15. Kirk Martin; 16. Derek Green; 17. Dan Mackenthun; 18. Curt Lund; 19. Jason Rogers; 20. Hesston Shaw; 21. Dustin White.last_img read more

Fitz Powers home at Fairyhouse

first_img Rebel Fitz had been under pressure from some way out but was just about to draw level with Ballycasey when the favourite took a tumble. Winters said: “He came off the bridle like he did at Mallow (Cork) the last time and he had to stretch at a few fences down the back. “My horses have not been flying for the last six months and I’d say there’s more to come from him. “We’ll give him a couple of weeks off now. We may go for the Grimes Hurdle at Tipperary and the Galway Plate could be a possibility.” Press Association Ballycasey attempted to make all the running for trainer Willie Mulins and was still in front when coming down at the second last, following his stablemate Mozoltov who had taken a tumble just after halfway. That left Rebel Fitz (2-1) in the lead under Barry Geraghty and Michael Winters’ consistent nine-year-old jumped the last in style to beat his remaining rival Bright New Dawn readily by 15 lengths. center_img Rebel Fitz took advantage of Ballycasey’s untimely fall to lift the Powers Gold Cup at Fairyhouse.last_img read more

Wellington Police Notes: Friday, April 19 – Sunday, April 21, 2013.

first_imgSaturday April 20, 2013•2:01 a.m. Christofer J Holland, 20, Mulvane, was arrested, charged and confined with driving under the influence of alcohol/drugs, minor in consumption of alcohol and seatbelt violation in the 1100 block. N. A, Wellington.•12:03  p.m. Ashley D. Antoine, 26, Wellington was issued a notice to appear charged with dog at large, no rabies vaccination, and no Wellington tags.•12:52 p.m. Officers investigated criminal damage to a vehicle in the 1000 block W. College, Wellington.•2:04 p.m. Officers investigated possession of marijuana by a known suspect in the 200 block E. 19th, Wellington.•5:40 p.m. Officers took a report of found property of keys in the 1200 block N. B, Wellington.•7:53 p.m. Jimmy J. Millwood, 21, Gaffney, South Carolina was issued a notice to appear charged with disobeying a stop sign and no proof of insurance. Wellington Police notes for Friday, April 19, to Sunday, April 21, 2013:Friday, April 19, 2013 •10:48 a.m. Officers investigated impairing a security Interest of a known suspect in the 300 block S. Blaine, Wellington.•10:50 a.m. Officers investigated criminal damage to property by known suspect in the 2600 block. N. A, Wellington.•3:03 p.m. Tina M. Morningstar-Moralez, 33, was issued a notice to appear charged with speeding 45 mph in a 30 mph zone.•4:45 p.m. Officers took a report of a vicious dog by known owner in the 100 block. N. G, Wellington.•5:41 p.m., Officers took a miscellaneous report in the 1000 block W. College, Wellington.•8:12 p.m. Officers investigated a burglary and theft in the 600 block N. Olive, Wellington.•10:58 p.m. Officers investigated a driving while suspended, no liability insurance, and operating a vehicle without an ignition interlock device in the 1100 block. N. A, Wellington.•11:07 p.m. Gregory A. McNeal, Wichita, was arrested and charged with driving while suspended, no liability insurance, and operation a vehicle without an ignition interlock device.•11:02 p.m. Officers investigated a theft in the 2000 block E. 16th, Wellington. Sunday April 21, 2013•12:07 a.m. Officers investigated criminal damage to property by a known suspect in the 400 block. W. Harvey, Wellington.•3:57 a.m. Officers investigated criminal damage to property by a known suspect and battery in the 1300 block. N. B, Wellington.•1:20 p.m. Leroy Perkins Jr., 33, Wellington was issued a notice to appear charged with speeding 42 mph in a 30 mph speed zone (radar) and expired drivers license.•2:23 p.m. Non-injury accident at 8th and G, Wellington involving vehicles operated by Tami L. Dillon, 34, Wellington and Dejuane L. Parker, 21, Wellington.•2:40 p.m. Tami L. Dillon, 34, Wellington was issued a notice to appear charged with Inattentive driving.•5:34 p.m. Officers investigated a criminal damage to property in the 200 block N. B, Wellington.•5:38 p.m. Officers investigated a theft of a license tag by unknown suspects in the 300 block N. Jefferson, Wellington.•7:11 p.m. Jeffrey F. Kaufman, 49, Wellington was issued a notice to appear charged with speeding 42 mph in a 30 mph zone.last_img read more