Month: May 2016

Language Technology – Building Bridges in a Shrinking World

Picture it.  You’re an English-speaking techie on vacation in France and you meet a mysterious woman.  She’s mysterious because you can’t understand a word she’s saying (and vice versa).  You go your separate ways, wondering what might have been, if you’d only had some magical way to bridge the gap. That magical way has arrived. The language barrier encountered by many world travellers may have become a thing of the past with the introduction of the Pilot.  In the book and television series, “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” Babel Fish performed intergalactic translations.   Now, right out of the...

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President Obama Invites America’s Youth to Geek Out.

This past April, President Barack Obama came face-to-face with the future of the great American geek.  It was a 9-year-old inventor at the annual Science Fair at the White House who inspired him to invite American kids to share their youthful genius in the fields of science and technology. The President, throughout his two terms in office, has been big fan of science and technology, prompting some to affectionately refer to him as the “Geek in Chief”.  Taking obvious delight in the work of young innovators like the 9-year-old inventor mentioned above, Obama is determine to put their genius...

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Clinton Pivots Toward General Election. Lead Becomes Insurmountable for Sanders.

Moving on from an acrimonious Primary season, presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is turning her attention to Donald Trump.  In a recent interview with CNN’s Chris Cuomo, Clinton sent a strong message to Bernie Sanders – the Primaries are over and she’s the nominee.  “It’s already done”, she stated during the interview. Clinton refused to respond to questioning as to whether she’d consider the Senator from Vermont as a potential running mate.  She warned that Sanders should now stop fighting a race he’s already lost and focus on helping her unite the party to defeat GOP presumptive nominee,...

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Governor Christie’s Bad Math

New Jersey Governor, Chris Christie’s math has failed him for the sixth straight year.  Right on schedule, his revenue projections have fallen short, this time to the tune of $600 million. The state government is now forced to revise its budget in light of the tax collection shortfall, impacting the coming fiscal year.  This amounts to a total of $1 billion, and an impact spread over two annual budgets. Perhaps wisely, Christie has stated publicly that the budget shortfall won’t affect public-employee pensions, this go around.  But the perennial solution of dipping into the state’s surplus is on the...

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Spring – the Right Time to Freshen up on the Home Front, Especially in the Kitchen

Spring is the time of year which speaks of new life and fresh starts.  What time of year could be more ideal to give your home a bit of a face lift?  It’s easy to get comfortable with the status quo.  Home is where the heart is.  But if you spend a lot of time there, maybe Spring is your moment to freshen things up. We tend to apply the word fashion to clothing.  But the home front has its own fashion world and this year, that world is talking fresh and light, just like Spring itself.  From flooring...

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Life at Home Just Got a Lot Sweeter for the 1%

Just when you thought the mythical 1% couldn’t get anymore mythical, a whole new trend is being born in that rarefied world.  From the carport to the kitchen, the uber wealthy are finding new shades of green to make the rest of us turn.  Not content with vast yachts and vacations which cost a year’s mortgage payments for most, those at the top of the food chain are finding creative new ways to splurge on their homes.  If there’s a way to trick out a top-of-the-line mansion, who better to find it than the people with all the loot?...

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Prince Reminds Us That Dying Unprepared Is Not an Option

The April 21 death of the Artist formerly known as Prince came as a shock to people around the world.  The beloved troubadour’s demise sparked tributes from Los Angeles to Beijing. While the $300 million estate he left behind is more than most of us could ever dream of, news of unpleasant family clashes over Prince’s fortune have gotten people thinking.  These hopeful relatives are clashing for one reason only – Prince died without preparing a will. Huge spike in people seeking advice on wills. The online legal information service, nolo.com, has enjoyed a 24% increase in the sale...

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Look No Further for Your Motivation to save for Retirement Now

A big part of the American Dream is the pay off when work ceases and retirement begins.  Whether we dream of the time we’re finally free to hop on the Orient Express, or lay on a hammock in Thailand for the rest of our lives, retirement is the Holy Grail of every American’s working life. But how in the heck do we plan on paying for it?  It pays to be aware of the shifting financial landscape, particularly where health care costs are concerned. Buddy can you spare $500K? If you’re a reaching retirement age this year (and you’re...

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Terry Gilliam Ready to End His Don Quixote “Dream Nightmare”

After being on his “to do” list for far too long, Monty Python alum and film maker Terry Gilliam is ready to bring his Don Quixote project back from the dead.  The reason?  He wants it out of his life, after years of glitches, disasters and stagnation. Talking to reporters at the Cannes Film Festival, Gilliam related that he wants the film off his plate for good, so he’ll resume work on “The Man Who Killed Don Quixote” this coming October.  Slated to play the role of Don Quixote is the legendary Michael Palin, Gilliam’s former fellow Pythonite. Since...

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Brian Glazer’s Ode to the Inquisitive Mind: How Being Curious Makes Life Better

Whether you know who Brian Glazer is or not, you’ll recognize some of his output.  His work includes films like “A Beautiful Mind” and famed television show “Arrested Development”.  His new book, “A Curious Mind: The Secret to a Bigger Life”, lets readers in on an open secret – that curiosity is not only a virtue, but the key to a life of adventure and discovery. Waco, Texas may not be the first point on the compass you’d think of as a place where the arts are revered.  Maybe it should it be. I was channel-surfing recently when I...

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