first_imgDavid Menton examined the quarrel over Mexican footprints dating “too early” for human evolution theories (see 11/30/2005 entry).  On Answers in Genesis, he has pictures of some of the prints, including one with a left-right stride and another with the right shape and indentations.  He disputes the evolutionary responses that these are not true human footprints.  He reminds readers that the African Laeoli prints found by Mary Leakey looked perfectly modern but were age-dated from the time of Lucy, when no modern humans were thought to exist.  How did the evolutionary artists render the scene?  They drew upright-walking hairy creatures with ape-like faces.  “Pity the evolutionists,” Dr. Menton jokes.  “They can’t force ape feet into the Laetoli footprints and they can’t pull human feet out of the Mexican foot prints.”This is a good time to review our quick refresher course, Guide to Evolutionary Theory.(Visited 27 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

first_imgTags:#How To#start Related Posts A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… marshall kirkpatrick 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketcenter_img Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… If you’re in the early stages of building a startup company and are interested in raising your first investment money for it, you may be interested to learn about, develop relationships with and be educated by some of the top women acting as angel investors in tech. Who are these women? That’s a question being collaboratively answered on the Q&A site Quora, with participation from people like Tara Hunt, Jason Calacanis and so far six other people with experience in the field. The group has assembled a good list – so we looked up all the people named on Twitter and created the following Twitter list that you can follow to keep up with all these women in one handy place: Top Female Angels. The group’s most recent Tweets can be seen embedded in a widget below.The discussion on Quora is sure to continue – as it does I’ll try to add more names to this list. Feel free to name more women who you’d like to have included in comments below as well.A Twitter list like this is handy because it provides context to these messages.last_img read more

first_imgWith This One Question, You’ll Never Need an Ic… Why is it that customer service never seems to get any innovation attention? For decades, providing great customer service has been a constant challenge and expense, yet relatively few technologies exist to ease the difficulty or cost. Sales and marketing see new software arrive every year, yet customer support has scarcely changed in the last half-century, save for better issue-tracking tools. Technology has brought an expectation of immediacy from the consumer — an expectation impossible to fulfill in customer service. According to LivePerson, 34 percent of consumers wouldn’t rate a customer experience as excellent if it took the company more than a minute to respond. The average customer service response times? Almost three minutes for chat and 17 hours for email. SuperOffice reports that one in five companies fail to regularly respond to chat requests entirely. Over a decade ago, chatbots promised to solve these problems with 24/7 support. But, as we can see from the dearth of chatbot deployments in the industry, that promise hasn’t been fulfilled. Theories as to why vary, but most agree that chatbot interactions are unintelligent, frustrating, and obviously not human; at the end of the day, they didn’t resolve the customer’s need. Increasingly, the strategy to make service better is to not provide any service at all. Instead, companies try to “enable” customers to find their own answers and solutions by deflecting their requests to an FAQ page or a form. While this saves time for support agents, it rarely provides a satisfactory end-customer experience. If the customer is fixing his own problems, the company gets none of the loyalty (or retention stats) that result from a customer feeling “looked after.” There’s an enormous difference between resolving a problem and deflecting it. What Customers WantCustomer loyalty is the fuel that drives successful businesses. Keeping loyal customers is far more valuable than finding new ones — increasing customer retention by as little as 5 percent can lead to a 95 percent profit spike. And from the opposite perspective, NewVoice Media’s latest Serial Switchers report found that, in 2018, bad customer service cost businesses more than $75 billion. In other words, companies that figure out the customer service equation and generate loyalty could collectively add billions to their bottom line. So what’s keeping customer service teams from claiming that lost revenue? What Forbes contributor and customer experience expert Stan Phelps calls “the customer expectation gap.” Phelps defines this gap across three dimensions, grounding each in data from IBM Institute for Business Value report:Speed. More than eight in 20 consumers want faster response times, according to the report.Consistency. Sixty-eight percent of those surveyed said they want customer service teams to harmonize their experiences across all channels of communication.Personalization. Of those surveyed, 76 percent expect customer service teams to understand and address their individual needs.What can customer service teams do to close the gap? Support agents can only help so many customers per hour, and pushing them to work faster cuts consistency and personalization. Instead, companies like Thankful are taking on the challenge with fresh AI technology and solutions, enabling companies to provide service that’s quick, personable, and consistent. In essence, Thankful hopes to fulfill the long-forgotten promise of customer service: giving customers what they want.The Tech Customer Service NeedsThankful’s mission to bring artificial intelligence to bear on shoddy customer service began when CEO Ted Mico met co-founder and CTO Evan Tann while he was developing an AI-powered wine recommendation tool for customers.“I’d had a procession of bad customer experiences earlier that week,” Mico explains, “so I jokingly asked Evan, ‘Why are we working on fixing wine recommendations when customer service is so broken?’ Thankful was founded that week with the mission of making help human.” Realizing many of Mico’s service issues could’ve been handled without human intervention, Mico and Tann went to work on an AI platform. Tann released the first version of the software on GitHub the same day as Microsoft’s BotBuilder. It blew up quicker than the big-budget build, and Tann’s radical approach soon made it to the front page of Hacker News. Despite the initial acclaim, Tann’s team had to radically rewrite the codebase over several years before the platform could attain the 99 percent out-of-the-box accuracy rate the brand used as a benchmark before it could launch to businesses.“Most [early] bots couldn’t provide correct responses after a couple of tries, which frustrated early-adopting consumers, businesses, and influencers in the space,” Madhu Mathihalli writes in industry magazine TotalRetail. “We’re not a bot,” Mico stresses. “In fact, more than 90 percent of incoming queries we’re dealing with are email, not chat. Thankful is the brain that governs service via any text-based channel.” “The key to great service is understanding what the customer wants and being able to deliver what the customer needs,” Mico adds. “At Thankful, we talk a lot about the five pillars that make up great customer service — speed, knowledge, accuracy, empathy, and thoroughness. Any of these pillars is hard for technology to emulate — getting all five to work together took almost three years of programming.” Faster Is FirstOnce Mico and Tann had an accurate model, they set their sights on the most glaring of the three customer service gaps: speed. “Consumers’ expectation for immediate service was created by tech, and it can only be solved by tech,” Mico argues. “We wanted technology to deliver on the promise of solving problems for the customers, delivering a human-like experience that makes them feel as though they’re being properly looked after.”  “We currently average 40-50 percent resolution rates for our e-commerce clients,” he says. Without an agent in the loop, Thankful still strives to provide a high level of service. This allows a company’s human agents to focus and dedicate more time to the remaining issues, which are often more complex.  Consistency Is CriticalThe second piece of the customer service puzzle, consistency, is the one that Mico and Tann think has been most absent from midmarket online retailers. Gladly’s 2018 Customer Service Expectations Survey revealed that 76 percent of customers receive conflicting answers when they ask different support agents the same question. Mico says that the replicable nature of e-commerce customers’ challenges is partially what led him and Tann to focus on the space. “It’s mostly repetitive issues like shipping, exchanges, returns, and product information: perfect for machine learning,” he says, “but now Thankful is also capable of much more complex e-comm-related actions.”The Proof Is in PersonalizationConsistency, of course, can be a double-edged sword. Customers rightly expect to have their individual circumstances considered, which most rules-based AI platforms fail to do. Mico acknowledges that Thankful can’t honor every customer request, but he explains that it can make exceptions. “We remember who you are — if you’re a longtime customer or VIP member, Thankful takes this information into account and responds appropriately,” he says. “Additionally, our AI is smart enough to understand context such as key information, like an order number, so you won’t have to repeat yourself later on — it will retain information conversationally just like a human, but with a better memory.”In the future, Mico hopes to make Thankful even more “human” in its personalization skills. “We get tons of thank-you responses from customers with smileys. Customers assume that because the problem is being solved in a human-like way that a human is responsible. Customers don’t tend to send heart emojis to robots,” he says.But if more companies start adopting a similar approach to customer service, customers just might. Tags:#chatbot#customer service#customer service technology#Personalization Related Posts How Self-Service Technology Can Boost Startup G… Brad AndersonEditor In Chief at ReadWrite AI is Not the Holy Grail of Sales, at Least Not… Brad is the editor overseeing contributed content at ReadWrite.com. He previously worked as an editor at PayPal and Crunchbase. You can reach him at brad at readwrite.com. Man or Machine? For Better Customer Service, Us…last_img read more

first_imgThe 2005 All Nations tournament is just 3 and a bit months away so we’ve updated the team lists and info for you after several withdrawals due to injury and so forth. WOMENS OPEN: Bo de la Cruz (NSW) Sharlene Harriman- NSW Rachael Holden- NSW Amanda Judd- NSW Kristy Judd- NSW Stacey Lapham- NSW Shelley Matcham- WA Melissa Pitfield- NSW Peta Rogerson- Qld Sharyn Williams- Qld Claire Winchester- NSW Louise Winchester- NSW Roxy Winder- Qld Kelly Woods- NSW Coach: Kerry Norman Assistant Coach: Dean Russell Manager: Renee Murphy MENS OPEN: Matt Curran- ACT Drumayne Dayberg-Muir- Qld Ash Farrow- Qld Chris Farrow- Qld Philip Gyemore- Qld Scott Mitchell- NSW Ben Roberts- Qld Ben Robinson- Qld Gavin Shuker- Qld Garry Sonda- NSW Jason Stanton- NSW Peter Stoddart- Qld Jamie Stowe- NSW Anthony Ziade- NSW Coach: Tony Trad Assistant Coach: Wayne Bambury Manager: Gary Rose MIXED OPEN: Riki Best- Qld Amy Fong- Qld Belinda Grech- NSW Dominique Maher- NSW Ben McCullen- Qld Teena McIlveen- Qld Justin Mitchell- Qld Stephanie Sorrensen- NSW Mary Steele- Qld Matthew Tope- NSW Dean Wilbow- NSW Daniel Rushworth- NSW Nathan Jones- Qld Jarod Tump- Qld Coach: Gary Madders Assistant Coach: Bernie Morrison Manager: Andrea Walters Mens 30’s: Milad Almaoui- NSW Matt Barclay- Qld Chris Benfield- NSW Scott Danswan- NSW Tony Eltakchi- NSW Michael Farhat- NSW Phil Jarrett- NSW Graham Knights- NSW Troy Morgan- Qld Gerard O’Keefe- Qld Dave Roberts- NSW Jason Scharenguivel- NSW Dean Taylor- ACT Jason Yee- NSW Coach: David Collins Assistant Coach: Charles Borg Manager: Mark Collins Mens 35’s: Dave Elliot- NSW Greg English- NSW John Georgiou- NSW Troy Hastie- Qld Tony Iannella- NSW Pule Latoa- NSW Mark Leonard- NSW Corey McLeod- NSW John Moujalli- NSW Craig Nicholls- NSW George Ornelas- NSW Lennie Ryan- NSW Sean Slinger- Qld Robert Weatherill- NSW Coach: Michael McDonald Assistant Coach: Barry Jackson Manager: TBA Mens 40’s: Danny Carulli- Qld David Cheung- NSW Michael Cheung- NSW Brian Fitzroy- WA Michael Hardgrave- NSW Robert Hatfield- NSW Tim Kitchingham- NSW Mark Koch- NSW Michael Mack- NSW John Samin- ACT Trevor Strachan- Qld Ashley Taylor- Qld Peter Velo- NSW Peter Wandl- NSW Coach: Dennis Coffey Assistant Coach: John Singh Manager: Ashley Synott Mens 45’s: Ray Bastian- NSW Bob Behnke- NSW Wayne Brennan- NSW Jeff Cheung- NSW Alan Davis- NSW Barry Draws- NSW Kevin Flett- Qld Peter Hawes- NSW Jeff McGhie- NSW Bill McLean- Qld Mick Pearsall- NSW Michael Prowse- NSW Gary Simmons- NSW Greg Snook- NSW Coach: Harry Appo Assistant Coach: Ricky Luland Manager: Marcus Cato Mixed 30’s: Suzy Barrett- Vic Michael Carter- NSW Belinda Chesell- NSW Sophie Perry- NSW Lawrence Fisher- Qld Wayne Gleeson- NSW Wayne Grant- Qld Craig Green- NT Craig Morrow- Qld Jacky Patrick- NSW Jason Powell- Qld Deborah Steinhardt- NSW Kerry Wardle- NSW Allen Watts- NSW Coach: Phil Dawson Assistant Coach: Peter Shefford Manager: Moses Choy Womens 30’s: Judy Collins- NSW Silvana Corti- NSW Maree Curran- ACT Jodie English- NSW Mary-Anne Fisher- Qld Sharon Gray- SA Cristy Hornery- NSW Lisa Mahoney- SA Kim Melville- NSW Cathy Ring- NSW Athanasia Savvoudis- SA Renee Sealey- NSW Kylie Small- NSW Maria Sonda- NSW Coach: John Collins Assistant Coach: Michael Lovett Manager: Jo Adams Womens 35’s: Kylie Crossley- NSW Alison Daskalovski Allison Day- NSW Heather Desbois- Qld Karen Hegedus- Qld Tammy House- Qld Kirsty Inglis- NSW Terri Kronk- Qld Sheralee Langbridge- NSW Lisa Miller- Qld Annette Mounsey- NSW Debbie Potts- NSW Anne Maree Shipman- NSW Julie Styles- Qld Coach: Suzanne Salter Assistant Coach: Greg Jones Manager: Peter Graham Tour staff- Peter Delmonte (Tour Leader) Jon Pratt (Tour Leader) Michael Broadbent (Sporting Images Photographer) Glen Eaton (Sporting Images Photographer) Louise Eddy (Medical) Steve Cunningham (Medical) Kara Roffey (Medical) Darryl Madge (Medical) Craig Wisdom (Medical) Laurie Atkins (Medical) Shane Townsend (Medical) Dr Bruce Watts (Medical) Cathy Gray (Elite Programs Director) Ian Stanley (National Performance) For all media enquiries please contact Rachel Moyle, [email protected]last_img read more

first_imgLincoln boss Cowley: I tried to sell Chapman to Evertonby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveLincoln City boss Danny Cowley appreciated the response from Everton rival Marco Silva for yesterday’s FA Cup defeat.Everton managed to edge Lincoln 2-1.”I was trying to sell him Ellis Chapman, our 17-year-old who came on and played that lovely pass, and was seeing if he fancied giving us a couple of million for him,” Cowley said with a smile.”But seriously, he was really positive with everything. He said how well we had defended without the ball and how good our structure and organisation was and that we were as difficult to play against as any Premier League team he’d played against this season, which was really kind.” TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

first_imgAnton Gill goes up for layup vs. NC State.Twitter/‏@CBSSportsCBB Little-used guard Anton Gill emerged during this year’s NCAA Tournament, helping Louisville top N.C. State with seven points on 3-of-3 shooting and two steals in just 11 minutes of play. That game ended up being the defining one of his brief Louisville career, as the former Top-50 recruit announced that he intended to transfer from the program, where he averaged just 9.4 minutes per game in 2014-15, after the season. While there were initially thoughts that Gill would transfer closer to a school in North Carolina to be closer to home, Gill is actually heading farther west, according to ESPN’s Jeff Goodman.Louisville transfer Anton Gill told ESPN he has committed to Nebraska.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) May 5, 2015Nebraska had a disappointing 13-18 season in 2014-15, after a breakout 2013-14 in which Tim Miles’ team went 19-13 and made the NCAA Tournament. Perhaps a talent like Gill can help replace the void left by star Terran Petteway, who has declared for the NBA Draft.last_img read more

The Ohio State women’s volleyball team celebrates after defeating No. 4 Penn State in four sets on Sept. 23. Credit: Miranda Lipton | Lantern ReporterAn anticipated rematch against Indiana (12-7, 3-5 Big Ten) and a match against Purdue (15-4, 4-4 Big Ten) are keeping the Ohio State women’s volleyball team focused this week.Ohio State lost three straight sets against the Hoosiers earlier in the season, but head coach Geoff Carlston said the team is prepared to bounce back.“It was one of the toughest losses I’ve dealt with in the past five or six years,” Carlston said. “We’re going to be a little different team in terms of personnel. Hopefully we can have Audra [Appold] and Madison [Smeathers] playing. Having them on the floor adds a lot of experience.”Senior outside hitter Audra Appold returned to the court last weekend against Michigan State after a one-game absence due to injury. “People keep asking me what I’m most looking forward to about playing again and I keep saying the same thing. I’m just really excited to be back out there,” Appold said. “I’m enjoying the time I have left. The biggest thing for the team right now is to enjoy being out there, to take in the crowd and the environment.”Junior middle blocker Madison Smeathers has played on and off throughout the season, but the two had not played together until both played in the previous match against the Spartans.Smeathers shared her personal motivation, one that stands both on and off the court. “You can always look around at other teams in the Big Ten and see what other people are doing,” Smeathers said. “That keeps you hungry. Losing obviously is a big killer that keeps you going, and so is coming into practice knowing how much better you can get every day.”The two players got right back to it as Smeathers knocked 13 kills in her first match back, and Appold had 11 digs. Purdue setter redshirt freshman Hayley Bush has contributed 788 out of the 900 total team assists. Carlston noted that Purdue is a “super physical team” with experienced players. “One of the crazy things about the Big Ten is that all the coaches realize that you have to be fluid and adapt to new game plans because teams will realize what you’re doing and use that against you,” Carlston said.Ohio State will hit the road on Friday to face Indiana at 7 p.m. in Bloomington, Indiana and Purdue on Sunday at 1 p.m. in West Lafayette, Indiana. read more