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Rental E-Kick Scooters To Be Banned In Malta

Rental E-Kick Scooters To Be Banned In Malta
Oct 19 2023 Share

Starting from March 1st next year, there will be a prohibition on renting e-kick scooters, but individuals will still be allowed to use their privately-owned ones in accordance with current legislation. 

The government plans to implement incentives to encourage people interested in using this mode of transportation to acquire their own e-kick scooters.

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This initiative is focused on promoting responsible e-kick scooter usage and alleviating disruptions for communities and individuals. Despite increased enforcement and penalties, communities have continued to face disturbances caused by rented e-kick scooters. These enforcement resources will be reallocated to other endeavors aimed at enhancing road safety.

Once again, steps are being taken to prioritize order and public safety, taking into account various studies that indicate e-kick scooters are primarily utilized as an alternative to walking rather than other forms of transportation.

This would see Malta following in the footsteps of Paris, which banned the vehicles back in April of this year.

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Drones And Ai Help Ambjent Malta Monitor Invasive Alien Species

Drones And Ai Help Ambjent Malta Monitor Invasive Alien Species
Oct 19 2023 Share

Ambjent Malta and the University of Malta worked together to develop a new tool that combines drones and neural networks to monitor and manage invasive plant species in valleys and other rural areas.

Through a project funded by the Malta Information Technology Agency (MITA), the University’s Faculty of Information and Communication Technology introduced an innovative application of aerial drone technology within the field of environmental science, revolutionising the methodology of monitoring and safeguarding Malta’s natural heritage.

Minister for the Environment, Energy and Enterprise Miriam Dalli met Ambjent Malta employees and the University team leading this project during one of the first trials of the new digital application at Għajn Tuffieħa Bay, on Thursday.

To develop this new digital tool, the University used high-precision aerial drones to capture high-resolution ortho-images of the Maltese terrain, with dimensions reaching an impressive 50,000 by 20,000 pixels. These images are invaluable for Ambjent Malta to survey the spread of invasive alien species in local biodiversity, covering extensive and often remote areas with unparalleled precision and efficiency.

This initiative’s key accomplishment is the use of Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs) for identifying up to seven distinct invasive alien plant species within ortho-images. By creating a comprehensive training dataset through manual labelling, CNNs can now recognise these species’ visual characteristics with remarkable efficiency and precision, even in unmarked real-world scenarios.

Minister Miriam Dalli highlighted that education reaches beyond the physical classroom. This project serves as a tangible demonstration of the harmonious integration of education, environmental science, and state-of-the-art technology.

“This project will empower Ambjent Malta and other environmental organisations to improve the effectiveness of their work to conserve Malta’s ecosystems. The digital transition of Ambjent Malta’s environmental monitoring is streamlining and expanding the process of identifying invasive species, and with more data in hand, we will be in a better position to implement sustainable interventions at different levels,” Miriam Dalli stated.

Josianne Muscat and Alex Borg Galea from Ambjent Malta and Prof. John Abela and Prof. Ing. Gianluca Valentino from the Faculty of Information and Communication Technology were present during the trial of the new application.

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Maltese Outdoor Enthusiasts Go On Truffle Search In Umbria, Italy

Maltese Hunters In Italy On Truffle Hunt In Heart Of Umbria
Oct 19 2023 Share

Lucas Micallef, the head of Malta’s FKNK, and a group of Maltese outdoor enthusiasts were in Italy on a truffle hunt in the heart of Umbria. 

 

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A post shared by Lucas Micallef (@micalleflucas)

Italian truffle hunting is a centuries-old tradition deeply ingrained in rural Italian communities. Truffle hunters, known as tartufai, inhabit small villages and rural areas. The process involves two key steps: hunting and extraction. Skilled hunters, aided by trained dogs, locate truffle-rich areas by identifying specific plant types. 

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They then use specialized tools to delicately extract the truffles, preserving the soil. This practice demands extensive knowledge of climate, environment, and vegetation, as well as a strong bond between hunter and dog. Passed down through oral traditions, such as stories and anecdotes, truffle hunting fosters local cultural identity and community solidarity. It’s often celebrated with festive events, and prioritizes ecological balance and plant diversity for sustainable truffle growth.

@lucasmicallef283

Finding #truffle in #Umbria #Italy #tartufo #tartufonero #cani #dogs #tartufoitaliano #food #finefood

♬ Lily – Alan Walker & K-391 & Emelie Hollow

Accompanied by two dedicated truffle dogs, the Maltese managed to get a direct taste of what it means to participate in this hunt, documenting it on social media. 

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United Airlines To Start Boarding Window Seats 1st To Avoid Waiting Time

United Airlines To Start Boarding Window Seats 1st To Avoid Waiting Time
Oct 19 2023 Share

Starting from October 26, United Airlines will implement a new boarding process for economy class passengers, prioritizing those with window seats. This strategy, known as WILMA (window, middle, and aisle), aims to reduce the time planes spend on the ground. WILMA has been tested at various locations and has demonstrated the potential to shave up to two minutes off the boarding time.

The approach spreads passengers along the aisle, enabling more individuals to stow their luggage simultaneously, thus expediting the process. The change will apply to the fourth boarding group and will not affect first class, business class, or those with priority-boarding privileges, including individuals with disabilities, unaccompanied minors, active-duty military, and families with children under 2.

In cases where multiple passengers share an economy reservation, like families, they will be allowed to board together. This new policy will be implemented on both domestic and select international flights. United’s decision to modify the boarding process stems from a reported increase in average boarding time by two minutes since 2019.

Efforts to refine boarding procedures have intensified with the introduction of checked bag fees over a decade ago, encouraging more passengers to bring carry-on luggage. This has added complexity to the boarding process, as airlines also seek to sell early boarding or provide it to elite members of their frequent-flier programs. 

While a two-minute difference may not greatly impact transatlantic flights, on heavily trafficked shorter routes, delays can quickly accumulate, potentially leading to late-day flight disruptions. The new system addresses challenges like late passengers struggling to find overhead bin space, which can affect on-time performance statistics.

#MaltaDaily