AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.Now a French inventor claims his ultra-detailed digital scans of the painting have uncovered a plethora of new secrets about the history of its color and composition – including the fate of the enigmatic woman’s famously missing eyebrows and lashes. Da Vinci’s 16th-century portrait of a Florentine merchant’s wife did originally include both brows and lashes, according to Parisian engineer Pascal Cotte, who says his 240-megapixel scans of the painting reveal traces of Mona Lisa’s left brow obliterated by long-ago restoration efforts. “With just one photo you go deeper into the construction of the painting and understand that Leonardo was a genius,” Cotte said at the U.S. debut of an exhibit detailing his findings. As a boy growing up in Paris in the 1960s, Cotte spent hours staring at the “Mona Lisa” the first time he saw it at the Louvre. Later in life, he used his scientific training in light and optics to develop the camera that would let him examine the object of his obsession. Cotte, 49, estimates he has spent 3,000 hours analyzing the data from the scans he made of the painting in the Louvre’s laboratory three years ago. Using sensors to detect light from both the visible spectrum and the infrared and ultraviolet ranges invisible to the human eye, Cotte’s camera allowed him to, in effect, burrow through layers of paint to “see” into the painting’s past. Among his findings: Da Vinci changed his mind about the position of two fingers on the subject’s left hand. Her face was originally wider and the smile more expressive than Da Vinci ultimately painted them. She holds a blanket that has all but faded from view today. At least as important to Cotte as discovering details of the painting’s rough sketches is the painstaking work he undertook to reveal what he believes are the painting’s colors as they looked on Da Vinci’s easel. Age, varnish and restorations performed by later conservators’ hands have resulted in a painting that, in its permanent home behind bulletproof glass at the Louvre, appears saturated with heavy greens, yellows and browns. Working with his 22-gigabyte digital photo, made using 13 color filters rather than the typical three or four found in consumer-grade digital cameras, Cotte created a reproduction of the Mona Lisa with the light blues and brilliant whites he thinks represent the painting in its original form. “For the next generation, we guarantee that forever you will have the true color of this painting,” Cotte said. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! ART: A researcher uses technology to revisit many of the famous portrait’s mysteries. By Marcus Wohlsen THE ASSOCIATED PRESS SAN FRANCISCO – For centuries, Leonardo Da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” has beguiled art buffs unable to resist speculating on the origins and meaning of the world’s most famous artwork.
West Ham have failed with an attempt to sign Clint Dempsey from Fulham, the Daily Mail say.The Hammers are said to have made an approach for the American, who has been linked with several clubs this summer.Meanwhile, Marseille want Gael Kakuta in exchange for Cesar Azpilicueta if they are to sell the Spanish right-back to Chelsea, according to the Daily Mirror.It is claimed Marseille have rejected a £5m bid for Azpilicueta and are holding out for more money but also fancy Kakuta either on loan or in a permanent player-plus-cash deal.It follows an interview with L’Equipe in which Kakuta, 21, appeared to suggest he wants to return to France and that Marseille are one of the clubs he would be interested in joining.The Mail say Chelsea are refusing to be held to ransom in their pursuit of long-term targets Edinson Cavani and Hulk.The Blues are reportedly threatening to withdraw from both chases, with Napoli striker Cavani believed to be haggling over wages and Porto keen to negotiate a higher price for Hulk.QPR striker Jay Bothroyd is heading towards a move to Sheffield Wednesday, according to The Sun.Bothroyd played for Cardiff under Owls boss Dave Jones, who is reported to be tracking him after deciding not to sign Marlon Harewood.Jones is apparently willing to pay £1m for the England international, who has been told he can leave Loftus Road.This page is regularly updated. Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebook
21 August 2014While Africa’s middle class may be smaller than the oft-reported figure of 300-million, it is growing at a strong rate – and the broad-based income growth is likely to encourage more companies to invest in the region, according to a report released by Standard Bank this week.There are 15-million middle-class households in 11 of sub-Saharan Africa’s top economies this year, up from 4.6-million in 2000 and 2.4-million in 1990, the report states. This represents an increase of 230% over 14 years.The report, titled “Understanding Africa’s middle class”, found that the combined GDPs of the 11 measured economies – Angola, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia – had grown tenfold since 2000.DiscrepanciesIncome discrepancies, however, are vast among the 11 economies, with almost 86% of the 110-million households falling within the low-income band. This is expected to fall to around 75% by 2030.“While the scale of Africa’s middle-class ascent has, we believe, been somewhat exaggerated in line with the at times breathless ‘Africa Rising’ narrative, there is still plenty of scope for measured optimism regarding the size of the middle class in several key Sub-Saharan Africa economies,” said Simon Freemantle, an economist at Standard Bank.The study used the Living Standards Measure (LSM), a South African methodology based on a wider range of analysis than income alone. Under the LSM, households with an annual consumption of under US$5 500 are classified in the low-income band, while households that consume between $5 500 and $42 000 a year are classified as lower-middle, middle, and upper-middle classes.OptimismFreemantle said there was cause for optimism among investors as the results suggest even greater scope for future growth. The number of middle-class households in the sub-Saharan African countries is likely to increase significantly in the next 15 years.“Including lower-middle-class households, the overall number swells to over 40-million households by 2030, from around 15-million today,” the report says.The 11 countries covered by the report account for half Africa’s total GDP (75% if South Africa is excluded) and half its population.The figure of 300-million middle-class Africans – one-third of Africa’s people – comes from a study by the African Development Bank in 2011, which defined “middle class” as earning between $4 and $20 a day.“Such individuals would still be exceptionally vulnerable to various economic shocks, and prone to lose their middle-income status,” Freemantle said.‘Consumer potential’The report found there was “an undeniable swelling” of Africa’s middle class, irrespective of which methodology was used.“Reliable and proven data should if anything spur more interest in the continent’s consumer potential by adding depth to what was previously conjecture,” said Freemantle.As a caution, the report states: “Though there has been a meaningful individual lift in income, it is clear that a substantial majority of individuals in most countries we looked at still live on or below the poverty line (measured as those with a daily income of USD2 or less).”SAinfo reporter
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Timely Rains Improve ConditionsRains reached across the state, boosting soil moisture levels and helping conditions for some crops according to Cheryl Turner, Ohio State Statistician of the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. There were 3.4 days available for fieldwork for the week ending August 21st . According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, 26 percent of the state was rated as in “moderate drought”, down significantly from last week. None of the state is under “severe drought.” Rain did not do much for corn condition which remains nearly the same, mainly due to the advanced state of the crop. Soybeans benefited a lot from the moisture and setting pods is now nearly complete. This has been the most rainfall seen in weeks for many areas but has come too late for some crops.Read the full report here