SUMMARY / RELATED TOPICS

Streaming media

Streaming media is multimedia, received by and presented to an end-user while being delivered by a provider. The verb "to stream" refers to the process of obtaining media in this manner. A client end-user can use their media player to start playing digital video or digital audio content before the entire file has been transmitted. Distinguishing delivery method from the media distributed applies to telecommunications networks, as most of the delivery systems are either inherently streaming or inherently non-streaming. For example, in the 1930s, elevator music was among the earliest popular music available as streaming media; the term "streaming media" can apply to media other than video and audio, such as live closed captioning, ticker tape, real-time text, which are all considered "streaming text". Live streaming is the delivery of Internet content in real-time much as live television broadcasts content over the airwaves via a television signal. Live internet streaming requires a form of source media, an encoder to digitize the content, a media publisher, a content delivery network to distribute and deliver the content.

Live streaming does not need to be recorded at the origination point, although it is. There are challenges with streaming content on the Internet. For example, users whose Internet connection lacks sufficient bandwidth may experience stops, lags, or slow buffering of the content, and users lacking compatible hardware or software systems may be unable to stream certain content. Some popular streaming services include Netflix, Prime Video, the video sharing website YouTube, other sites which stream films and television shows. In the early 1920s, George O. Squier was granted patents for a system for the transmission and distribution of signals over electrical lines, the technical basis for what became Muzak, a technology streaming continuous music to commercial customers without the use of radio. Attempts to display media on computers date back to the earliest days of computing in the mid-20th century. However, little progress was made for several decades due to the high cost and limited capabilities of computer hardware.

From the late 1980s through the 1990s, consumer-grade personal computers became powerful enough to display various media. The primary technical issues related to streaming were having enough CPU power bus bandwidth to support the required data rates, creating low-latency interrupt paths in the operating system to prevent buffer underrun, enabling skip-free streaming of the content. However, computer networks were still limited in the mid-1990s, audio and video media were delivered over non-streaming channels, such as by downloading a digital file from a remote server and saving it to a local drive on the end user's computer or storing it as a digital file and playing it back from CD-ROMs. In 1990 the first commercial Ethernet switch was introduced by Kalpana, which enabled the more powerful computer networks that lead to the first streaming video solutions used by schools and corporations. In the mid 1990s the World Wide Web was established, but streaming audio would not be practical until years later.

Practical streaming media was only made possible with advances in data compression, due to the impractically high bandwidth requirements of uncompressed media. Raw digital audio encoded with pulse-code modulation requires a bandwidth of 1.4 Mbit/s for uncompressed CD audio, while raw digital video requires a bandwidth of 168 Mbit/s for SD video and over 1000 Mbit/s for FHD video. The most important compression technique that enabled practical streaming media is the discrete cosine transform, a form of lossy compression first proposed in 1972 by Nasir Ahmed, who developed the algorithm with T. Natarajan and K. R. Rao at the University of Texas in 1973; the DCT algorithm is the basis for the first practical video coding format, H.261, in 1988. It was used for online video conferencing, it was followed by more popular DCT-based video coding standards, most notably MPEG video formats from 1991 onwards. The DCT algorithm was adapted into the modified discrete cosine transform by J. P. Princen, A. W. Johnson and A. B. Bradley at the University of Surrey in 1987.

The MDCT algorithm is fundamental to the MP3 audio format introduced in 1994, the more used Advanced Audio Coding format introduced in 1999. During the late 1990s and early 2000s, users had increased access to computer networks the Internet. During the early 2000s, users had access to increased network bandwidth in the "last mile"; these technological improvements facilitated the streaming of audio and video content to computer users in their homes and workplaces. There was an increasing use of standard protocols and formats, such as TCP/IP, HTTP, HTML as the Internet became commercialized, which led to an infusion of investment into the sector; the band Severe Tire Damage was the first group to perform live on the Internet. On June 24, 1993, the band was playing a gig at Xerox PARC while elsewhere in the building, scientists were discussing new technology for broadcasting on the Internet using multicasting; as proof of PARC's techn

Kuman Thong

Kuman Thong is a household divinity of Thai folk religion. It is believed to bring fortune to the owner if properly revered. Kuman, or Kumara means "Sanctified young boy"; the veneration of Kuman Thong is not part of mainstream Buddhist practices, but it is popular in Thailand. The authentic Kuman Thong originated in a practice of necromancy, they were obtained from the desiccated fetuses of children who had died whilst still in their mothers' womb. The witch doctors were said to have the power to invoke these stillborn babies, adopt them as their children, use them to help them in their endeavours. According to ancient Thai manuscripts used by practitioners of black magic, first the unborn fetus was surgically removed from the womb of its mother; the body of the child would be taken to a cemetery for the conduction of the proper ceremonial ritual to invoke a Kuman Thong. The body was roasted until dry. Once the rite was completed, the dry-roasted Kuman was covered in gold leaf, thus this effigy received the name of “Kuman Thong”, meaning “Golden Little Boy”.

Some Kuman effigies were soaked in Nam Man Phrai, a kind of oil extracted by burning a candle close to the chin of a dead child or a person who died in violent circumstances or an unnatural death. This is much less common now, because this practice is now illegal if using fat from human babies for the consecrating oil. There are still some amulets obtained through the authentic methods appearing in the market; some years ago a famous monk was expelled from the Buddhist Sangha for roasting a baby. He was convicted, but continued to make magic as a layperson after his release. In the case of a female spirit child, the effigy is not called Hong Phrai; the Kuman Thong is mentioned in the Thai legend of Khun Chang Khun Phaen, where the character Khun Phaen made one by removing the stillborn baby from the stomach of his wife, whom he had killed. On May 18, 2012 a 28-year-old British citizen of Taiwanese origin, Chow Hok Kuen, was arrested in a Bangkok hotel room with six male fetuses, roasted and covered in gold.

Police reported. In 2011, a case was reported in Laos of a man murdering his pregnant wife, so as to use the fetus as a "Louk Lord". Hyper-realistic dolls of children, "Luk Thep" or "Look Thep", have become popular in Thailand; some people believe the dolls can be injected with the spirit of a child after being blessed by a Buddhist monk. Their owners provide such care as food and clothes "in the hope of receiving good fortune in return", some companies offer owners of the dolls the option to reserve them their own seats and services. Folk religion Good luck charm Media related to Kuman Thong at Wikimedia Commons AmuletForums – Thai Amulets and Buddhism Online Discussion Forums Kuman Thong Category – Kuman Thong History and Examples Thai amulet website Sak Yant Buddhist tattoos By Spencer Littlewood

Zbigniew Pełczyński

Zbigniew Pełczyński, OBE is a Polish-British political philosopher and academic. He is an Emeritus Fellow of Pembroke College, where he taught politics from 1957 to 1992, he has been instrumental in providing opportunities for scholars from Poland and other post-communist countries to study at British universities at Oxford and Cambridge. Pełczyński was born in Poland, he was taken prisoner by the Germans. After the war Pełczyński settled in Britain. In 1956, he completed his D. Phil. Thesis at Oxford University on Hegel's minor political works. After 1956, Pełczyński made regular visits to Poland and was instrumental in developing several programmes for the education of students from communist Europe at Oxford. In 1982, he was instrumental in establishing a scholarship program for Polish students at Oxford. In 1986, through collaboration with the Hungarian-American philanthropist George Soros, who earlier had established the Open Society Foundation, scholarships became available for Hungarian students at Oxford and the Stefan Batory Foundation was established in Poland.

The programme widened with participation from Cambridge University, Manchester University, other British universities. In the United States, Pełczyński became well known for having been the politics tutor at Oxford University for the Rhodes Scholar and future President Bill Clinton. Other famous students include prime minister of Hungary Viktor Orbán, former Polish Minister of Foreign Affairs Radek Sikorski and journalist and biographer Walter Isaacson. Pełczyński is an honorary member of the Polish academic society Collegium Invisibile, a prestigious institution that offers tuition for outstanding Polish students. In 1990s Pełczyński was advising the Constitutional Committee of the Polish Sejm, working on the new Constitution of the Republic of Poland, he was an advisor to the Chief of the Chancellery of the Prime Minister of Poland on government institutional reforms and was a member of Prime Minister's Council on the education of civil servants. He was consulting the European Economic Union and the OECD on government reforms and public administration in Poland.

He is the founder and a current chairman of Stefan Batory Trust in Oxford and a member of the Polonia Aid Foundation Trust in London. In 1994 Pełczyński founded the School for Political Leaders in Warsaw; the organization, which subsequently changed its name to the School for Leaders Society, states as one of its goals "creating social capital based on leadership". Hegel's political writings translated by T. M. Knox. Hegel's political philosophy: problems and perspectives: a collection of new essays edited by Z. A. Pełczyński; the History of Poland since 1863 R. F. Leslie... et al.. Poland: The Road From Communism "Special R. B. McCallum lecture, 29 May 1982." Conceptions of liberty in political philosophy edited by John N. Gray; the state and civil society: studies in Hegel's political philosophy Wolność, państwo, społeczeństwo: Hegel a problemy współczesnej filozofii politycznej A biography of Pełczyński by his former student David McAvoy was published in 2012. Witness - BBC World Service interview with Pełczyński about his experiences in the Warsaw Uprising Maria Kruckzkoska, "Oksford w Warszawie," Magazyn Gazety Wyborczej, 10 January 1997