Watch Over


I would like to share about a very familiar word “perceptive”. There are several words and phrases that could mean the same as perceptive. This include but not limited to; clever, observant, sensitive, responsive, insightful, or discerning.

Perceive means “to see”; so, perceptive is a word to describe someone who is good at seeing. Perceptive is derived from the Latin word percipere which means “to obtain or gather.” A perceptive person is good at gathering information and using her senses to take in the world.

If you are upset but trying to hide it, a perceptive person is the one who will notice. If you describe a person or their remarks or thoughts as perceptive, you think that they are good at noticing or realizing things, especially things that are not obvious.

While there are many competencies to develop strong social awareness, a great one to start with is perception.

A great deal of our existence involves managing relationships. Could be sibling relationships, work relationships, business relationships, manager employee’s relationship or Family relationships.  

Anyone who has experienced any kind of relationship can attest to the fact that not all relationships are easy to handle. Many of the failed relationships can be attributed to poor communication.

We all know the value of communication. In fact, when things go wrong, one of the first things we attribute our failures to is miscommunication. That means strong communication begets success.

Most of us think of verbal communication when we think of communicating with others. But research shows that as low as 7% of any given message is delivered through words, meaning 93% of a message’s meaning is delivered through nonverbal channels.

Consider this scenario: a manager walks into the office and greets the employees. “How are things?” they ask an employee. “Great,” the employee replies.

Interpreting only verbal communication, we get the sense that the employee is doing great.

But when we add nonverbal cues, maybe an eye roll, or an unenthused tone as the employee says “great,” we get the sense that things may not be so great.

Perceptive people understand the need to look for nonverbal cues when they communicate. They also pay attention to every aspect of how something is communicated, to recognize the true emotions that underlie questions and statements.

How to Change Your Mind

A friend of mine recently told me a story I thought you’d like to hear…

Growing up, a certain family didn’t have much money, but the mother LOVED to window shop (look in the windows at stores) and imagine buying the lovely things she saw.

However, she always felt guilty… “We’ll never afford these things, so why bother looking?” she often told her son.

A lot of how we are today comes from patterns of thought we learned from our parents when we were young.

And if we heard that we’re the kind of people who don’t have/can’t do X, we naturally believe it.

But, as the son of this woman grew, he began to open his mind to what could be possible if he changed what he believed.

One day, as a young man, he decided that even though he didn’t have much money, he’d enter the most expensive hotel in town.

He couldn’t yet afford a room, but he could afford a coffee in the hotel’s fancy cafe.

The coffee itself wasn’t important, but by sitting there, the young man told his mind, “I AM the kind of person who can be in one of the nicest hotels in the world, and that I DO deserve the best.”

All of a sudden, he became someone who could recommend the coffee at an expensive hotel, and he felt wealthier.

Later, he took this a step further and told the front desk staff that he was interested in seeing one of the rooms.

He told the staff that he would have many clients coming to visit him, so he was looking for potential hotels. Of course, he didn’t yet have anyone coming to see him, but he could feel he would in his future.

(It’s a pretty common thing for hotels to show rooms to people for reasons like this.)

When he was finally standing in the elegant room people usually spend over $1000 a night for, he again told his mind that he was the kind of person who could be in an expensive hotel room.

Today, this man IS wealthy, and travels the world.

He also sends LOTS of clients to expensive hotels.

But he began by changing his mind.

Once you know something is possible, your mind has a way of making it a reality… Just like believing the opposite guarantees something will NOT happen.

Right now, YOU can do the same thing with your learning…

A Helping Heart

In as much as people think Nursing is all about giving oral drugs and injections ( medication) in a more appropriate way than they would, there’s more to it than just hands on, its an art and a science which aims at professional excellence ,improving compassionate, holistic,comprehensive,culturally,spiritually and socially sensitive care to clients under the scope of nursing practise. I personally find it both spiritual and physical because it’s the spiritual that manifests into the physical and that is what makes me so passionate about it. To begin with a nurse embraces compassion,empathy etc which are not taught but come from ones inner being.

Nursing is dynamic and knowledge on its own attained from which ever school cannot make you the best nurse there is but God because he is above everything ,the ultimate healer,giver of life,comforter etc and I as a nurse am only a but a vessel reaching out to people, so I find my work a lot more easier when I make Jesus the centre of it all because I know my ability is not of me but of GOD,come to think of it no one wakes up in the morning and plans on the number of clients he or she is going to attend to and the kind of nursing interventions he or she will implement.

Being an infant in the proffesion,I have worked from minimum to maximum pressure nursing different walks of life ,religious beliefs,values and practises,gender etc and I have managed to respond to their need for care respecting the uniqueness of each client so it is vital to come to the realisation that we are able to do all things when we allow God to take the wheel.

On the other hand it is also very important to acknowledge those that are higher than us were we are limited so as to regularly maintain and update our knowledge and skill just like it is also vital for any Christian to have a spiritual father (Romans 10:14) when a child remains under the umbrella of his or her mentor,he or she will not succumb to failure.

So as we uphold the standards of Nursing let us also remain Loyal to God.


Thankful Heart

Considering the skies, hearing sounds of the birds of the air and being greeted with nice cool morning breeze. Observing the plants, tiny, small and great, this is all wonderment of God; the most amazing thing is that he created all that for you. How mindful of him?

Many times we expend our energies in pursuing so many different things in life, work, careers, marriages, professions, sorting out family uproars and many more similar activities. At times these happenings may poise a huge toll on our lives especially if we don’t get any sense of approval or accomplishment.

Such activities are there for human beings and are part of us. On the other hand there are not there to last forever. Even in such stressful conditions God want us to enjoy life and have complete peace of mind.

If we can only allow him for 5 minutes to hear what he wants to tell you, forget your requests for a while and concentrate on his word and promises.  See goodness in the things he has created, thank him; see the possibility of him fulfilling your heart desires, perceive that you are a reason he created those things that exist.

He will definitely speak to you. Whatever you will hear from him follow and do it diligently, that will significantly change your life. Do not always push for your own agenda; seek to know his agenda for your life.

Overcoming any problem begins with a thankful heart. Those are words to a song I heard years ago. When I first heard them, I thought, “how could that be true?” I wasn’t convinced that the writer of the song knew what she was talking about so I began to check the words out against my problems. Sure enough, no matter what it was I was challenged with, I really did not begin overcoming the situation until I began to look at what I had to be thankful for in it.

Thankfulness adjusts our attitude. Does anyone out there need an attitude adjustment?  I remember my mother telling me at times to adjust my attitude. She would do so with her hands on her hips which meant I better adjust it quickly.

I Thessalonians 5:15 is our prescription for an attitude adjustment and just what God orders for His kids. It says, “Be joyful always; pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (NIV) God is too good to tell us to do something and not provide what we need to do it. Our job is to obey and He will supply. Our job is also to ask Him for what we need and admit we cannot do it without Him.

Sometimes overcoming begins with simply thanking God because He is good.            Psalms 107:1 says, “Give thanks to the Lord for he is good and  his love endures forever.” When we can’t think of anything to be thankful for, we can always start with thanking God for his love. No matter what we are going through, we can rest in the fact that we are loved by the creator of the universe. We may not always feel loved and actually be rejected by people, but nothing can separate us from God’s love for us. His love has comforted me on many a difficult day as I simply made the statement, “God I thank you that you are good and you love me.” Those words help me adjust my attitude and remind me of the truth. I have prayed this prayer to help renew my mind when it has battled looking at all I have lost in the death of my mother. No matter what my circumstances, He is good and He loves me.

Gratefulness is my quick access to the presence of God, especially on the difficult days. His presence is what comforts me, gives me hope, helps me and is my anchor. Some days I do better than others, but scripture says in Psalms 95:2 , “Come into his presence with thanksgiving…” (KJV) If you need more of His presence, try thanksgiving. It works for me.

I sometimes talk to God like this; “God, I need your help. Your word says to give thanks in all things so all I can think to thank you for is what I will learn in this situation. Thank you for the experience I will gain. Thank you for helping me through this.” God is faithful but often times we must wait on Him and trust Him.

I do not believe God just gives us patience but He will help us to be patient. As we grow in that character, we learn the benefit of trusting His timing. God doesn’t just  give us longsuffering, but He will help us endure difficult things if we look to him. I know this from personal experience as I have walked through the valley of the shadow of death. Anyone can quote a scripture or pass a written test, but character is developed in the soil of difficulties.

Colossians 3:17 states how we are to conduct our lives. “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”  Thanks is an expression of gratitude and gratefulness. Thankful is an adjective that means pleased or relieved. How thankful are you? Do you have an overall feeling of being pleased and relieved? I personally could do better at being thankful.

I know sometimes I have to simply pray, “God change my heart.” to develop an attitude of gratitude. According to this scripture, all our words,our job and actions should be done like we were doing it just for Jesus and with a beautiful attitude of thankfulness.

At the end of the day, all of us have plenty to be thankful for. James 1:17 says,

“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”  All that we have that is good, is a gift from God. That is plenty to be thankful for. May God grant you grace today to see and perceive beyond circumstances and be thankful.

Mindset Fallouts

Mindset-Part 3

Spies Sent into Canaan

Numbers 13:1–33

13 The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, g“Send men to spy out the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the people of Israel. From each tribe of their fathers you shall send a man, everyone a chief among them.” So Moses sent them from hthe wilderness of Paran, according to the command of the Lord, all of them men who were heads of the people of Israel.

17 Moses sent them to spy out the land of Canaan and said to them, “Go up into lthe Negeb and go up into mthe hill country, 18 and see what the land is, and whether the people who dwell in it are strong or weak, whether they are few or many, 19 and whether the land that they dwell in is good or bad, and whether the cities that they dwell in are camps or strongholds, 20 and whether the land is nrich or poor, and whether there are trees in it or not. oBe of good courage and bring some of the fruit of the land.” Now the time was the season of the first ripe grapes.

From the Bible story we learn about God’s desire to change his people’s lives and make them better. He commanded the leader Moses to send spies to the Promised Land. The spies that where sent were not just ordinary people but leaders of each tribe. It can be associated to what we now call member of parliaments or diplomats.

These elders were assigned with a specific mandate; among them were Joshua and Caleb. After a 40-day exploration of Canaan, the explorers reported, “We went into the land to which you sent us, and it does flow with milk and honey! Here is its fruit. But the people who live there are powerful and the cities are fortified and very large. We even saw descendants of Anak there” (Numbers 13:27–28). This report frightened the people (Numbers 13:31–33).

We could see how our minds can be deviated to only focus on one aspect, Israelites where coming with a strong background of miraculous victories among them God seeing them through the mighty Egyptian army as well as parting the red sea. All those things where quickly forgotten in the glimpse of an eye and they opted to pick the mindset of defeat. Moreover the same God who sent them on that mission was the same God who delivered them from the mighty Egyptian army.

This is also true to our daily lives; God has given us a lot of promises and prophetic words over our lives but we still languish in pain, deficiency, sorrow, bitterness and resentment. Just because there is a promise of God does not mean there will be no difficulties. In fact God want to reveal himself in difficulty situations. It’s very difficult to see the work of God in situations where there are no hardships and difficulties.

The instructions to the Egyptians were that they should keep courage; God is still repeating this same statement to us. If you find it difficult to keep courage, just remember where God has picked you from. That is called mindset; readjusting and aligning your mind to think in a way you will obtain victory, remember you are just getting what is rightfully yours which is in the enemy’s territory or hands.

One disheartening thing about the story was that when the report was given, all the 10 leaders presented disturbing news to the people. That people there are huge and mighty they could not measure up with their strength, they looked like grasshoppers. When Joshua and Caleb mentioned that with Gods on our side we can still get people threaten.

Caleb had a different Mindset from the other spies. Verse 30 records, “Then Caleb silenced the people before Moses and said, ‘We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it.’” When the people complained that they could not go up to conquer the land, both Caleb and Joshua responded strongly: “Joshua son of Nun and Caleb son of Jephunneh . . . tore their clothes and said to the entire Israelite assembly, ‘The land we passed through and explored is exceedingly good. If the Lord is pleased with us, he will lead us into that land, a land flowing with milk and honey, and will give it to us. Only do not rebel against the Lord. And do not be afraid of the people of the land, because we will devour them. Their protection is gone, but the Lord is with us. Do not be afraid of them’” (Numbers 14:6–9).

Sometimes the majority is not always right, despite Caleb and Joshua insisting on victory amidst major setback like sons of Anak (believed to have been very tall and huge people) as well as fortified cities. The whole Israelites people refused to see things in that perspective, instead they wanted to stone and kill Joshua and Caleb. Occasionally, what is in your mind might not generally be accepted by the majority of people. That should not mean you should give up, develop the growth mindset and go on and do it. God does not necessary disregard prayer but He demands that our minds be renewed and be conformed to His own standard and will. He demands his people to see things his way, so that they can get whatever they require from Him.

Joshua’s leadership qualities can be seen in his rock-solid faith in God. When the Israelites were on the edge of the Promised Land in Numbers 13, God commanded Moses to send out twelve people to spy out the land, one from each of the tribes of Israel. Upon their return, ten reported that the land, while bounteous as the Lord had promised, was occupied by strong and fierce warriors dwelling in large, fortified cities. Furthermore, the Nephilim (giants from the Israelites’ perspective) were in the land. However, Joshua and Caleb were the only two who urged the people to take the land (Numbers 14:7-10). Here we see one thing that sets Joshua (and Caleb) apart from the rest of the Israelites—they believed in the promises of God. They were not intimidated by the size of the warriors or the strength of the cities. Rather, they knew their God and remembered how He had dealt with Egypt, the most powerful nation on the earth at that time. If God could take care of the mighty Egyptian army, He could certainly take care of the various Canaanite tribes. God rewarded Joshua’s and Caleb’s faith by exempting them from the entire generation of Israelites that would perish in the wilderness.

When God saw what the Israelites did to Joshua and Caleb he was deeply sadden, he told Moses that he will punish his people. Moses went to plead with the Lord almighty, God changed his mind.40 years later the Israelites embarked on the same mission with Joshua now the leader. He was given similar promises like Moses by God to be strong and courageous. Chapter 2 of the book of Joshua; He secretly sent two spies to look over the land specifically the land of Jericho which was fortified.

Interestingly, when God gives you something he means it. Look at the perceptive of the enemy when the Israelites where considering themselves as small as grasshoppers in the land God set them to occupy. The hearts of the enemies melted down in fear because they heard what the Lord did to the Israelites when they came out of Egypt, drying up the Red Sea and they knew that the Lord God has given the land to them. They feared what might become of them if these people come and occupy the land. Joshua 2:8…

Before the spies lay down for the night, she went up on the roof and said to them, “I know that the Lord has given you this land and that a great fear of you has fallen on us, so that all who live in this country are melting in fear because of you. 10 We have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea[a] for you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to Sihon and Og, the two kings of the Amorites east of the Jordan, whom you completely destroyed.[b] 11 When we heard of it, our hearts melted in fear and everyone’s courage failed because of you, for the Lord your God is God in heaven above and on the earth below.

What more do you need? If God be for us who can be against us? Romans 8:31. What is it that is bothering you? What is it that has made your whole life miserable? What is it that you have always wanted to have and it does not see to come your way? What is delaying upon your life that you feel resentful? In all ill situations know that the Lord is good and his mercies endure forever. Decide to change your mindset and follow the mindset of God. All situations are set before you so that he may reveal his glory. By nature we are very difficult people to believe, we even refuse to believe in Him even after looking at His creation which he has setup in his own wonderment.

Therefore God want to deal with your mind, the longer you accept to believe in him the longer it takes for you to conquer and recover. Difficulty and complicated situations will always be there for us but our conformity with Gods mind will always see us through. Israelites 40 years wait was not set for them as the time they will conquer but came as the result of people’s strong resolve to believe in the progressive mind of God and His desire to give them rest.

God has a very strong desire to give you rest in whatever situations be it economically, financially, physically, families, nations, in your careers and in all your wellbeing. God knows that you are physically weak but He will ask you to gather courage and be strong. He knows that you need marriage he ask you to gather courage and stay strong. He knows that you are broke he still demands us to believe him as a provider. In essence God knows all our weaknesses and frailties and requires us to have firm trust in him.

Now that we know the desire of God and how committed he is towards his plan. We need to adopt one mindset, and that is a progressive mindset of God. Whatever limitation is set before you, you will overcome. Paul shows us the mindset guidelines in a letter he wrote to the Philippians;

Philippians 4:8 (ESV):Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

With your mind you can create wonderful and adorable things man has ever seen on earth; you can make the world and with the same mind you can destroy yourself to such an existent that the world would be miserable place to live in. See how man’s mind is able to create endless wars and hate speeches. We now know how powerful our minds are and the need to correctly aligning them with appropriate guidelines. Make a strong resolve today to align your thinking to whatever is honorable, fair, pure, lovely, commendable, praise worthy and excellent. In whatever you do let this be your benchmark, in your careers, families, nations, works and your entire life.

Mindset Types

Mindset Part 2

In the previous chapter we did talk about mindset and that it’s a very important aspect of human being .Everyone in life has gone through some disheartening moments in their livelihood. Some are still experiencing some atrocious and despicable experiences. Perhaps that’s what the world cannot offer is total guarantee that things would be well for the whole of human life.

I’m just looking at the clip of thousands of homeless Nepal men, women and children on BBC News who have been displaced by one of the world’s most dreadful earthquake. The emotional impact has been devastating to the villagers who have lost not only their homes but also their beloved ones.

The first 7.8-magnitud earthquake struck the Nepalese village of chapagaun at launch time on 25th April 2015. The disaster killed more than 8000 people and left thousands injured and homeless. In the absence of permanent shelter, 200 villagers have established a temporally camp in a square, where they eat and sleep together.

One remarkable scene that stroked my mind was the remarks of one of the affected old woman she said “We eat and pass the time together, the earthquake has made the future very dark, but it’s nice to see the young children laughing and playing”.

There are many different situations that really put us in a very awkward situation that we are deviated to see the future very dark, no glimmer of hope. Opting for the right mindset will help us console our broken hearted. There is always a way we can look at the situation and decide how we can be able to respond to it.

Opting for the right mindset is not to overlook the obvious disaster that has befallen you but it is to be able to decide how you will be able to respond to that particular situation. It’s about having total control over both the internal factors and external factors that surround you. It’s about accepting and applying the appropriate action that is deemed fit to the required stand.

Like in many circles, there are factors within and outside that impact the approach and success of one’s life. The external environment consists of a variety of factors outside your life doors that you typically don’t have much control over.

In a story of the Nepalese woman above, she eluded on a weird aspect amidst the calamity, she mentioned that children were playing and laughing. It can be taken literary that they are kids they don’t know much about what’s happening but the most profound lesson we can get from that is that one is capable of deciding how to respond to any situation. Mindset can be conditioned to process and to act in a certain way. And yes, the mindset itself is not fixed. You can change your mindset just by thinking it through

Fixed Mindset

At this point it is worth noting about different types of mindsets and how they relate and affect our actions. There are two basic mindsets that shape our lives. A fixed mindset and Growth Mindset; in a fixed mindset, people believe their basic qualities, like their intelligence or talent, are simply fixed traits. They spend their time documenting their intelligence .

People in a fixed mindset believe you either are or aren’t good at something, based on your inherent nature, because it’s just who you are.This sounds simple, but it’s surprisingly deep. The fixed mindset is the most common and the most harmful, so it’s worth understanding and considering how it’s affecting you.

For example: In a fixed mindset, you believe “She’s a natural born singer” or “I’m just no good at dancing.”

The fixed mindset believes trouble is devastating. If you believe, “You’re either naturally great or will never be great,” then when you have any trouble, your mind thinks, “See? You’ll never be great at this. Give up now.”

Growth Mindset

People in a growth mindset believe anyone can be good at anything, because your abilities are entirely due to your actions. In a growth mindset, you believe “Anyone can be good at anything. Skill comes only from practice.” The growth mindset believes trouble is just important feedback in the learning process.

Can you see how this subtle difference in mindset can change everything?

More examples:

You want to hide your flaws so you’re not judged or labeled a failure. Your flaws are just a TO-DO list of things to improve.
You stick with what you know to keep up your confidence. You keep up your confidence by always pushing into the unfamiliar, to make sure you’re always learning.
You look inside yourself to find your true passion and purpose, as if this is a hidden inherent thing. You commit to mastering valuable skills regardless of mood, knowing passion and purpose come from doing great work, which comes from expertise and experience.
Failures define you. Failures are temporary setbacks.
You believe if you’re romantically compatible with someone, you should share all of each others views, and everything should just come naturally. You believe a lasting relationship comes from effort and working through inevitable differences.
It’s all about the outcome. If you fail, you think all effort was wasted. It’s all about the process, so the outcome hardly matters.

Modern psychology knows about how belief systems about our own abilities and potential fuel our behavior and predict our success. Much of that understanding stems from the work of Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck, synthesized in her remarkably insightful-Mindset the new psychology of success.

In the next chapter we will look at other common references in order to understand how we can inquiry into the power of our beliefs, both conscious and unconscious, and how changing even the simplest of them can have profound impact on nearly every aspect of our lives.



Part 1

The quest to success in the life of the person is constantly looking at ways to make it in life, be better than others, do better in business, graduate top of the class, improve relationships and we can have an endless list. There are series of books written about how to be successful and enhancing personal abilities and talents.

Often times we consider our abilities and talents to bring us accomplishments. Much as that is overly true and important, our mindset plays a very important role in our achievements too. This is not to downplay other essential attributes required for success but to highlight the need to embrace this fixed mental attribute. As we go on discussing this topic, you will discover that other vital attributes emanates from having a right mindset.

Our mindset can be a very good ingredient in the mission of our successful journey in whatever endeavor or undertaking. Mindset is a fixed mental attitude or disposition that predetermines a person’s responses to and interpretations of situations. Mindset is a strong lens that we use to view life situations.

The interpretations of life situations and responses are very critical in our day to day life. This is what differentiates a 27 year prisoner who rose to higher dimensions of life of becoming one of the greatest leaders of the most powerful nations in Africa to a mare prisoner. A CEO of the world’s best Software Company to a street vendor.

You can live in heaven like in hell with bad mindset; conversely you can live in hell like in heaven with the right mindset. This got to show you how powerful mindset can be in a person’s life. Strong mindset can heal a person’s life.

One can have a fixed mindset or growth mindset. Growth mindset can enables a person to learn and adapt to new challenges. It creates a platform to personal growth. On the other hand fixed mindset inhibits personal growth and development.

Seeking ways of improving our talents and abilities must be accompanied by acquiring a right mindset of growth. A can be done attitude is the right frame of reference for positive results. This should be followed by using necessary steps of continuous learning.

Many people who have been successful in life history have not made it devoid growth mindset. Growth mindset motivates the brain, encourages and gives self-assurance in the midst of hardship. Teaching a growth mindset creates motivation and productivity in the worlds of business, education, and sports. It enhances relationships.

Friendly matches

The value and the marketability of an exchange through football have been recognized and are being held actively throughout the world. Among them, a friendly match has been considered as the most important factor and a variety of things can be achieved through this, such as improving team’s strategy, increasing active exchange between the countries or the teams and hosting charity events.
The purpose of friendly matches is to help the teams. Especially, during the season before an international competition or the period of preparing a new season, the teams will compete with teams at a similar or better level like an official match. And this is to analyze the strengths and weak points of team and other hand it could consolidate and to complement their performance.
The purpose of friendly matches is to help teams improving team’s strategy. Especially,during the season before an international competition or the period of preparing a new season. And this is to analyze the strengths and weak points of team and other hand it could consolidate and complement their performance. We have had a series of good friendly matches; we need to start seeing some benefits of those friendlies matches, seeing a more promising approach to our game is more than welcome. Otherwise last week performance is not inspiring any hope at all!

KENYA: Satellite Tracking System Puts Africa On Map of Space-Based Climate Surveillance

Kenya has made a remarkable move of deploying  its first ever satellite tracking system. Thanks to a new satellite tracking system based in Kenya, eastern and southern African states have joined the growing ranks of countries tracking extreme weather and climate change impacts from space.

The Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development (RCMRD) in Nairobi launched a satellite tracking system in mid-July that can collect real-time data from 75 percent of Africa’s land area.

Capable of capturing images with a 250-metre resolution, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) monitors factors affecting the environment, like forest fires, in areas where human surveillance cannot reach without the aid of aerial photography.

“It enables the acquisition of direct data which can be processed into different products for a variety of applications, such as flood mapping, crop monitoring, fire assessment, water quality assessment and hailstorm prediction, among others,” said the RCMRD’s director for remote sensing, Tesfaye Korme.

The satellite receiving station in Nairobi collects data from several earth observation satellites, which it shares with the RCMRD’s 15 member states in eastern and southern Africa, Korme said.

Funded by the Google Foundation at a cost of $250,000, the MODIS antennae gathers information on Africa from the Atlantic coast to the Indian Ocean and from the north to the south of the continent, officials said.


That means it can tap data from Gachari Wanja’s village in central Kenya.

The farmer from Nanyuki has tried a couple of options, including conservation agriculture techniques, to boost production from her land in Laikipia County. But none has yet shown promise, laments the mother of four.

“I have even signed up with a crop insurance scheme as a way of ensuring I do not suffer so much loss when the rains fail,” said the 36-year-old. “Sometimes I am compensated for the loss, but at other times I do not get a payout.”

It is not her fault when she doesn’t get anything, as payouts are made to farmers depending on data collected from the nearest remote weather station.

Powered by solar energy, the automatic weather stations are fitted with a General Packet Radio Service (GPRS), which enables them to record rainfall data from farms within a radius of 20 km every 15 minutes, according to officials at the Center for Training and Research in Arid and Semi Arid Lands Development (CETRAD).

For instance, if rain falls at Wanja’s farm but doesn’t reach her neighbour’s land some 5 km away, it means the neighbour wins compensation but Wanja doesn’t.

“Insurance companies ask for evidence of what is being claimed,” said Robinson Mugo, who heads up an ecological monitoring and disaster-response project called SERVIR-Africa at the RCMRD. But sometimes remote weather stations fail to give accurate data, he added.

This, according to Mugo, is where MODIS – which supports the SERVIR project, among other things – comes in.

It can show insurance companies, governments and farmers how much rain is received over a given period of time much more accurately than the weather stations, he said.

The SERVIR platform, set up in 2008, integrates satellite observation and predictive models with other geographic information to track and forecast ecological changes, and respond to natural disasters.


Mugo, who recalls his childhood growing up on a farm, is troubled by the rapid change in climate patterns. Installations like automatic weather stations, he says, cannot meet the demand for factual information to shore up expanding initiatives like crop insurance.

“Climate change not only affects countries but has gone beyond geographical and political boundaries,” Mugo said. The cross-border data captured by MODIS can be shared to inform policies that help ordinary people cope with the impacts of a warming world, he added.

The technology is also useful for scientific activities such as measuring ocean temperatures and soil sediment running off into water bodies, and predicting hazards like tsunamis, he added.

But not everyone is convinced that big investments in technology will achieve much in tackling climate change.

Lanyasunya T.P., a member of the management board at Kenya’s National Commission for Science, Technology and Innovation (NACOSTI), argues that young people and women need to be involved at the community level in such efforts if they are to bear real fruit.

“The future of this country in all spheres of development is in the hands of the coming generation,” he said. But NACOSTI – which is not involved in the MODIS project – lacks funding to help young people begin exploring their own ideas, he added.

The RCMRD’s Mugo, however, believes governments affiliated with his institution are making progress in engaging their employees, as well as donors and communities affected by climate change.

“It might look like governments are making a small contribution to fight climate change but it is significant,” Mugo said.

In the case of the MODIS project, the Kenyan government employs the staff working on the project, and is responsible for gathering, processing and distributing the data to the centre’s other member states.


Here’s A Look At The Finger-Vein Scanner Barclays Is Going To Use On Its Customers

Barclays Bank in the U.K. will begin using a finger vein scanner to identify its customers. The move comes after a wave of hacks on financial institutions that have demonstrated how feeble password and PIN protections have become.

The bank will send the small portable device to its customers who want to do their banking online. It will function as a form of two-factor identification. Users will punch in their pass word or account details, and then be required to confirm their identities by sticking their fingers into the scanner, a separate device from their computer.

Here’s a look at how it will work:barclays-4 barclays-finger-vein-scannerimage_adaptive_full_image barclays-finger-vein-scanner-1  

Barclays customers have already been using a separate portable device, the PINsentry, the access their accounts online. Users log in, then insert their debit cards into the PINsentry to retrieve another code number, and can only proceed with transactions once the web site is satisfied that the user, the card and the PINsentry code all came from the owner of the account.

Here is a PINsentry:

Jim Edwardsbarclays-pinsentry

The vein scanner will be even more secure, Barclays says: “The compact device can read and verify the users’ unique vein patterns in the finger. Unlike finger prints, vein patterns are extremely difficult to spoof or replicate. Barclays will not hold the user’s vein pattern and there will be no public record of it.”

Here is a closeup:

Barclays finger vein scanner

The device will require users to make sure they don’t lose any of their fingers, the Guardian noted:

Customers will first have to register a finger – Barclays is recommending the index finger, plus a back-up digit should you be careless enough to lose or damage the first choice. The unique vein pattern in the finger will then be held on a sim card that is added to the reader. Barclays itself will not store the data.


The device then scans the unique pattern of veins inside your finger to confirm that it’s actually you:


Japan, Turkey, Russia and Poland already have banks using vein scanners to confirm IDs, the Financial Times says.

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