Friday, July 09, 2021
EXECUTIVE ORDER ON PROMOTING COMPETITION
QPORIT XR NEWS BRIEF
JULY 9, 2021
President Biden today signed an executive order to promote competition in US commerce.
Currently there are several companies, led by Apple and Microsoft, that have more than a $1,000,000,000,000 valuation. That's a $$$ TRILLION dollars.
A disturbingly large fraction of the wealth of this country is locked up in these companies.
The business practices of ultra large companies (including Apple, Facebook, Microsoft, Google/Alphabet. Amazon, and Tesla) have also been controversial. Among the issues are:
- Do they inhibit other companies unfairly?
- Do their practices unfairly increase prices for consumers?
- Do their practices allow them to make too much money?
- Do they have too much power over economics, policy, or anything else?
- Do they violate people's privacy?
- Do they allow the use of people's data for bad outcomes?
- Do they facilitate the propagation of lies?
- Do they facilitate organizing for illegal or dangerous activities?
- Are they careless about possible harm that can come from their activities?
Big companies can contribute in important, positive ways to the economics and quality of life in the country. Any regulation must facilitate the benefits while preventing the harm -- now and in the future -- coming from companies doing business in the US.
Here is the text of the executive order:
Here are the President's remarks when signing the order:
Last year, the House Judiciary Committee issued a detailed report on competition:
Underlying the behavior of our large companies (and small one's too), and affecting any governmental action that may be taken, is the fact that technology is accelerating exponentially. Here are some predictions (made here in QPORIT) for 2021:
· Technological development will continue to increase exponentially.
o It will be a difficult challenge to equitably distribute the benefits of technology to all social, geographical, age, financial and other demographics.
o There will be new cameras and new headsets for Virtual Reality.
o There will be progress in developing Augmented & Mixed Reality.
o AI will have new techniques and new business applications .
§ Chinese AI companies will do very well.
§ Robotics will improve significantly.
§ Automated vehicles will make big advances.
o 5G will continue to roll out, and there will be a few notable applications.
§ Getting fast 5G to rural areas will go very slowly.
· (“5G” includes several different technologies of different speeds.)
o Cloud services will be a big business.
o Cyber security and regulation of technology will be major issues.
§ But they are complicated and there will be no major solutions in 2021.
§ New laws and new ways of thinking about technology may be needed.
§ It may even be necessary to change the fundamental TCP/IP and other protocols that govern Internet communications.
Sunday, July 04, 2021
QPORIT XR NEWSROOM 2021
- HERE'S SOME BASIC NEWS ABOUT W11:
- It will be rolled out later this year and into 2022.
- W10 will be supported at least until 2025.
- There are minimum hardware requirements to W11.
- Many of the improvements in W11 seem related to supporting new hardware opportunities.
- There are significant design upgrades:
- More ways to snap multiple windows together -- to fit different screen formats, and personal preferences.
- Curved corners on buttons.
- Different color theme possibilities.
- Saved screen layouts --
- for different use cases (home/school/work/different projects, etc)
- to switch quickly between use cases.
- New fonts.
- Start is re-designed.
- Teams is upgraded to support easy video calling and messaging
- It will be pre-loaded on the taskbar
- Note: Pre-loading major features has often been a lightning rod for anti-trust scrutiny!
- GamePass and other game features, including visual enhancements, and fast loading, will be integrated.
- The Store will be modernized.
- The vigorish will be less than 30%
- The store will host -- with no charge -- sellers that provide their own back-end payment services.
- The store will make available Android apps; and they will be able to run on a software layer that is built into W11.
- The MS Windows 11 page:
- Windows 11 for developers:
- For game developers:
- 11:00 AM EST -- There will be a special event, probably to announce a new WINDOWS 11! (Remember when they said Windows would be Windows 10 for ever and ever?)
- 03:00 PM EST -- There will be a developer event, probably to explain to developers how they can benefit from the new operating system; in part, it is likely that MS will be announcing a new store to distribute products developers have built.
- won a Peabody Award this year!
- Colbert has been an anchor of intelligence, ethics, and political responsibility during the COVID year (and the irresponsible Presidential administration of the past four years), while creating a consistently refreshing and entertaining show roughly 200 times a year.
- He has been a hero and a moral supporter of all those who believe in responsible government.
- Indeed, his comic monologues were often the most accurate description of the reality of political events -- more accurate, prescient, sophisticated in their analysis, and pointed than many (most?) news shows and political "analysts", while being extremely funny.!
- Congratulations, Stephen Colbert!
- Here's the presentation and response:
- Congress passed, and President Biden signed, a bill that establishes June 19th a new National Holiday, Juneteenth, celebrating the practical end of slavery in the US.
- SCOTUS dismissed a suit that challenged Obama Care, by a vote of 7-2. Health Care remains in place. Now, it has to be improved, including the restoration of features the previous administration destroyed.
- in his first trip abroad, meeting with our allies and with President Putin, re-established the United States of America as the leader of the free, democratic countries of the world.
- Ironically, and with blithe hypocracy, some commentators on FOX News called Biden weak on Russia.
- Also, separately, speaking to the Press just before leaving from Europe, Biden denounced the Jan 6 attack on the Capitol and the GOP attempts to pass voter suppression laws.
- has a new Prime Minister for the first time in more than a decade.
- The Knesset, by one vote, 60-59, accepted a coalition led by Naftali Bennett to succeed Bibi Netanyahu.
- Bennett's coalition is very broad, spanning rightist parties thru a Muslim Arab Party (a first for an Israeli government).
- Bennett, himself, is on the far right, and was once Chief of Staff to Netanyahu.
- Netanyahu has been an ally of American Conservative politicians since he was an Ambassador to the US.
- More recently he attacked the Obama led anti-nuclear weapons pact with Iran, and allied with Trump on cancelling the treaty.
- He helped to squash attempts to promote a two-state solution for Palestinian-Israeli relations.
- On a positive side, he oversaw Israeli economic growth, and improved relations with some of Israel's neighbors (especially those who were anti-Iran).
- One factor which was important in helping to establish the new coalition was that Netanyahu had been accused many times, and recently was indicted, for corruption.
- Here are some links about the change (and, for background, about the Israeli government):
- in a powerful, straightforward address to the staff of the Justice department, broadcast live to the public, announced that
- the Justice department would begin a strong effort to support the right to vote for all Americans;
- they would increase the number of lawyers in the Civil Rights division;
- they would investigate whether post-election election audits violate Federal law;
- they would investigate whether redistricting is being carried out in accordance with Federal law;
- the passage of the Voting Rights bills before Congress is important to ensure that every American's right to vote is not abridged.
- He also said that the assertions of fraud in the 2020 election were disproved by officials of the previous and current officials, by Congressional investigations and by courts at the local, state, and Federal level.
- He called the efforts to cast doubt on the election and to abridge the right of all people to vote, an attack on democracy that must be vigorously resisted.
- (separately from the announcements above) will investigate subpoenas issued by the Trump Justice Department for information from members of Congress and the press.
- TULSA OKLAHOMA was the site of a horrible massacre and riot aimed at a peaceful, prosperous, black community.
- EVERY life matters.
- Texas Democrats had to walk out of the State Legislature to prevent (at least temporarily) Republicans from passing voting suppression laws to abridge Black (and other likely Democratic) voters from voting.
- EVERY vote matters because EVERY life matters.
- must be a priority in the current infrastructure upgrade plans.
- It may be necessary to fundamentally change both Internet protocols and computer operating systems.
- I was a spectator when these systems were being developed. Security issues were deliberately ignored at that time. "Trust", encouraging the development of digital systems, and a focus on redundancy (preventing the whole system from destruction by one attack) rather than than the harder task of preventing all harmful attacks were the strategic choices.
- "Trust" is no longer an option, and the other choices are no longer priorities in a world of developed digital systems, and multiple hostile attacks, some criminal, some political, and others with a variety of motives.
- to investigate the events of Jan 6 was blocked by Republican Senators.
- The "events", on the face of it, appeared to be an attempt to overthrow the legitimately elected government of the US.
- Trying to prevent an investigation should be taken as an admission of guilt by Republicans.
- Although the bipartisan commission was blocked, the investigation of the events should proceed in closed and open hearings by relevant committees of the House and Senate.
- The Republicans are engaged in a partisan attempt to suppress the votes of Democratic leaning voters across the country.
- This is profoundly anti-democratic and anti-American.
- Attempts by Republicans to seize power in the country by violence and suppression of democracy must be stopped.
- Legislation to preserve democracy in the United States of America is essential, urgent, and needed now.
- The Republicans can not block the truth or destroy democracy if the House and Senate act now.
- Committee hearings should begin as soon as possible.
2021-05-27 (THU MAY 27, 2021)
XR - EQUALITY, THEATER
THE PUBLIC THEATER
- has a new plan for diversity, inclusion, equality and "cultural transformation"
- Here's the plan:
- As a possible model for other institutions it has a lot to be recommended.
- Nevertheless, I have a few thoughts about some items in the plan, and some not in the plan, that I believe should be taken into account.
- Conspicuous in the plan is this phrase:
- "In order to create a more humane and inclusive workplace, we have pledged to have all staff of The Public make a standardized living wage (based on New York’s cost of living) by 2023".
- No! Except for volunteers, ALL staff should have a living wage NOW.
- The plan seems to emphasize diversity and equality with "BIPOC" ("BIPOC" is an acronym for Black, Indigenous, and People Of Color.) and language diversity with English and Spanish.
- The long history of American oppression of the BIPOC ecosystem and peoples, requires a special effort both for a redress of the past history and for prevention of new offences (for example, police violence, and new attempts at voter suppression).
- The best solutions need to avoid echoes of “separate but equal” and should embrace support for diversity and equality for all.
- There are many factors that contribute to diversity:
- One is gender.
- One is age. There are more people than ever active over the age of (pick any number greater than 60). And there are more ideas than ever from young people in High School and younger. (How many 5th grade classes depend upon a student rather than staff for helping with computers and new technology? Teens are getting big audiences on Social Media sites. They should have exposure to theater, and could have much to contribute.)
- One is $$$. People without money need more than a lottery or a long line for free access to summer theater --- for example, an opportunity to create culturally. People with money also have a lot to contribute beside money.
- One is language. There are more languages spoken in New York than English and Spanish. The "plan" is presented in English and Spanish. The top three languages in New York are: English, Spanish, and Chinese Mandarin, with smaller numbers speaking Russian, Italian, French, Korean, and some speaking Yiddish, Hindi, and various Arabic, Asian, and African languages.
- In the spirit of an oxymoron, English is, of course, the lingua franca of the US. A unifying language is important. And... it is the heritage of the Shakespearean background of the Public.
- One is nationality. At a time when we are emerging from several years of xenophobia, with particular recent attacks on Chinese residents and people, and with stress on the system of immigration, The Public could well be a beacon for casting a light on the whole world. New York is a city with a substantial BIPOC, international, and immigrant population.
- The plan seems to be largely about restructuring the staff to be more centrally BIPOC. The mission statement is more general:
- ...we in the theater also have our own specific challenges. As the tellers of stories and the makers of images, we must strive to center those our country has marginalized, to tell truths our culture has suppressed, and to create the narratives that allow us to imagine a more just and inclusive nation. We know that art always reflects the conditions under which it was made, so we must also look inward and ensure that our own structure, processes, and behaviors reflect the world we are striving to bring into being.
- The Public Theater has, since its inception, been a place to bring great theater, both historical and new creations, to the New York public.
- There is a long history in the US of saying one thing, but doing another: in the Declaration of Independence we have the stirring words:
- We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
- Note: Written by Thomas Jefferson, we have to remember that when he said "men", he did not mean women. In fact, he also did not mean all men - just people of property or professions, and not slaves. (Jefferson was a slave owner, as was George Washington. And what the Declaration said about Indigenous People is horrifying.) We need to do NOT WHAT THEY DID, BUT WHAT THEY SAID, what the words TRUTH, EQUALITY, LIFE, and LIBERTY mean today.
- I hope that in the plan for restructuring, The Public will look to the spirit of the Declaration (as we read it today) and to the spirit of The Public's heritage: To create and present, to all NY, great theater that upholds and defends the principle that ALL people are EQUAL, with a RIGHT to LIFE, LIBERTY and the PURSUIT of HAPPINESS.
- In taking the broad view of diversity, inclusion, equality and "cultural transformation" in its mission and operations, The Public can best support the New York public, and the goals of the BIPOC community in particular.
- This provides a large library, including the James Bond franchise, and it boosts the ability of Amazon Prime Video to create new content.
- The distribution of movies through computer streaming as an extremely important channel has resulted in a recent shift of the movie industry.
- Disney has begun streaming directly to consumers.
- Disney, over the years, has added a number of content producers to it's production pipeline, including Pixar for animation and Lucas Films (with Star Wars).
- Then they added FOX to diversify their library
- Then they began streaming.
- Netflix has begun producing their own movies, rather than relying on other studios to provide content.
- Verizon acquired content providers and tried to go into the content development business, but discovered they could not and sold AOL, Yahoo and other media properties.
- ATT acquired Warner (which itself had once upon tried to combine with AOL, then unloaded that) and tried to go into the content development business, but discovered they could not and sold Warner to Discover.
- SONY, a while ago, in another era, did a tech-media integration, buying Columbia Pictures. SONY is now linking loosely to Netflix.
- Paramount is part of the CBS-Viacom family.
- NBC is part of the Comcast family, now trying ad-based streaming with Peacock.
- Apple is trying to create their own studio.
- There are very few US movie studios remaining "independent".
- criminal investigation in NY is now being escalated, with the creation of a Grand Jury.
- FACTS are what actually happens.
- It does not matter whether anybody understands it, knows about it, lies about, describes it accurately, or anything else...
- It happened.
- If a tree falls in the forest, it happened, even if no-one is there.
- Facts happen, but most facts are not easily or completely known.
- The clearest facts are those that directly impact our senses.
- It is a fact that I saw a pretty flower today.
- There is a clear process in law and in science for determining our best knowledge of "facts".
- In law, a trial before a (fair!) jury or judge determines what are the "facts".
- In science, the ability to repeat an experiment, and to rule out other interpretations of the experiment determines the "facts".
- Our ability to make good decisions depends on knowing the facts.
- Since the underlying facts are not usually known, the "facts" as determined by the legal, scientific, or other clear, fair and accurate process is the way we can best determine the basis on which to make our decisions.
- FICTION is the way we use words and stories and pictures and even mathematics to understand the facts.
- Scientific "theories" are just ways we try to understand the facts we have available to plumb a deeper truth about the underlying facts.
- A theory suggests how to use mathematics to take measurements of the current state, then calculate what the measurements would be as the result of an experiment.
- If the measurements of the result is what we expect, we can continue to explore the "predictions" of the theory.
- If the result is different from what we expect, then we have to adjust the theory.
- Theories are not facts. They are stories or fictions that tell us what facts we can use to make decisions.
- Looking out the window at flowers provides clear facts about the world: We see pretty flowers!
- But the underlying facts are more complicated.
- Everything we see, we see because photons of particular frequencies come to our eyes and are interpreted by our brain.
- We can not see the electrons and protons of the flowers.
- First, they are too small.
- They also have spin 1/2, and photons can directly "see" only objects with integral spin.
- We also can not see the infrared or ultraviolet photons coming from the flowers, because our eyes do not capture photons of those frequencies and the brain does not react to them.
- So it is a fact that we see pretty flowers, but it is a fiction that allows us to see the flowers and know that there is more going on, that we can ignore(!) while we enjoy the view.
- FAKES are evil: they are deliberate or careless ways to make us believe that something that did not happen, did happen.
- They are attempts to get us to use as "facts" things that did not happen.
- They are evil because we make decisions based on what we believe are facts.
- When we act on the basis of assertions of what happened, that are not facts, we make bad decisions:
- Bad decisions -- like attending political rallies in close proximity to others without wearing masks during a pandemic which spreads when people are in close proximity without wearing masks -- can cause lives to be ruined and lives to be lost.
- Creating immersive interactive fiction and embedding it in real life (IRL) has always been an exciting challenge for content developers.
- A famous example is Orson Welles' radio version of War of the Worlds, which terrified many and caused havoc in 1938.
- It was, by the way, a Halloween broadcast.
- Wikipedia describes some of the reaction to the broadcast, whose significance lay partly in the fact that this Martian invasion was an unstated metaphor for the possibility of a genuine invasion IRL by Nazi Germany.
- Although it was fiction, and performing a horror story may seem like a game, it may be harmless, as Welles' himself said, "Until it ceases to be a game."
- There were attempts made by the police and others, in the middle of the broadcast, to provide additional assurances to the public (beyond the one's that had already been made in the show) that this was a fictional, dramatic story and not real.
- It is not clear how much that made any difference.
- I do not know what laws if any were enacted, following this show, to prevent fictional stories from being presented to the public as if they were true.
- However, lies or fictions without disclaimers, (FAKES) used to generate revenue may rise to the level of illegal fraud, and when used for political purposes as in the rise of the Nazi party to power, they can be dangerous to the entire world.
- The conspiracies promoted by QAnon, and the narrative that Trump actually won the election, are clearly elaborate fictions using real people as the characters in a fanciful story. But, when promoted as truth, they stop being fiction and become FAKES. (See story above.)
- Even Ted Cruz, while trying to gain advantage by not denouncing the storyline that Biden was not properly elected, did not claim this storyline was true, he just claimed he was supporting the people who actually believed the fiction (as if in 1938 he had recommended that the US mobilize against the possibility of Martians, rather than saying the broadcaster should remind the audience it was fiction).
- Four lines of defense again possible real life harm from these storylines could be.
- The obvious: denouncing the lies as lies.
- The criminal: checking whether the story was promoted as truth to raise money fraudulently.
- The creative: reminding the world that the narrative is a fictional horror story, using real people, places, and things as characters, and the fantasies should not be allowed to interfere with the actual real world.
- The constitutional: Democracy always depends on the ability of the voters to make informed judgements based on accurate information, and it depends on a functional system of justice. For capitalism and commerce to function without corruption also requires truth.
- There are well defined methods of determining the truth in both science and the law.
- There need to be national laws or even a constitutional amendment requiring truth in Government, in Politics, and in Commerce, with severe and immediate remedies for violations.
- Fictions are OK, even beneficial, as long they are understood to be fiction.
- FAKES are evil.
- civil investigation in NY is now a criminal investigation, according to Rachel Maddow of MSNBC, a few minutes ago, reporting on a story first broken by CNN.
- began today with a keynote by Sundar Pichai.
- Most of the event featured progress in applications of AI to photos, voice, text, new styling in the new Android 12, and maps.
- One exciting new device was teased at the end.
- Google is developing "StarLine", a teleconferencing system which
- uses live volumetric video and distance capture to create the feed,
- uses advanced compression technology to transmit the signal live,
- and uses a large lightfield screen to display a lifelike 3D image (with no headset).
- Google invested heavily, years ago, in Magic Leap, whose mission at the outset was to create a lightfield HMD.
- I wonder whether this screen is the large size version of what Magic Leap never produced in headset dimensions.
- Speculating: The idea (behind showing 3D this way on a large screen without an HMD) may be that the lightfield presents - to each eye - the image that that eye would see if a real person were sitting at the position of the virtual image.
- This would be a little like a lenticular 3D screen, but a better way of sending more realistic images with less artifacts to each eye.
- continues to consolidate and re-organize.
- AT & T sells Warner Media to a new company to be run by Discovery.
- The sale is expected to close in mid 2022.
- It will be owned with roughly with 70% belonging to AT&T and 30% by Discovery.
- It may have a new name.
- It will be run by Discovery CEO David Zaslav.
- Jason Kilar will remain, at least temporarily, the head of Warner.
- HBO Max is included in the sale.
- The news division of Warner is included.
- The games division may not be fully included.
- Verizon, only recently, sold its media division, including AOL & Yahoo
- See the NEWSROOM, below for May 3, 2021.
- Currently, the major streaming media companies are Netflix, followed by Disney+.
- They are all being challenged by startup streaming plays from tech companies, including Apple, YouTube, and Amazon Prime Video.
- But it's not easy: A startup attempt targeting mobile devices, called QUIBI, recently failed.
- Smaller streaming efforts, like Peacock & CBS, may struggle to find a secure place.
- More challenge to linear video streaming is coming from interactive content, including, especially, games.
- was one of the most enjoyable filmmakers of the French New Wave of the late 1960's, and after.
- He was an editor of Cahiers du Cinema, one of history's most important film magazines.
- Among his best known films here are Pauline a la plage (Pauline at the Beach), Claire's Knee, Love in the Afternoon, Ma nuit chez Maud (My Night at Maud's) and La Collectionneuse.
- Many of his films deal in a light hearted way with young men and women, and how they relate to each other in love, or not quite.
- He made a series of four "Tales" set in Summer, Fall, Winter and Spring, which are being shown currently online by Montclair Film.
- (By the way, tonight, May 7, Montclair Film is having a fundraising event hosted by Evelyn and Stephen Colbert. The URL above has all the information.)
- A Tale of Summer stars a young Melvil Poupaud, best known here for Angelina Jolie's By The Sea, where he played the man in the couple that lived in the room next door.
- I had the opportunity to interview Melvil when he visited New York during the Rendez-Vous with French Films at Lincoln Center with a film called The Great Game, a (French style) political thriller.
- In the interview, Melvil also talks about making the Tale of Summer with Rohmer, and working with Angelina Jolie.
- The interview can be watched on YouTube at:
- I filmed the interview in 3D. If you have a headset like the OCULUS QUEST, you can enjoy the interview in 3D by going to YouTube VR in the headset, and searching for QPORIT MELVIL POUPAUD GREAT GAME.
- severely criticized statements made by Barr, former head of the Justice Department.
- Here's an excerpt:
- "And of even greater importance to this decision, the affidavits are so inconsistent with evidence in the record, they are not worthy of credence. The review of the unredacted document in camera reveals that the suspicions voiced by the judge in EPIC and the plaintiff here were well-founded, andtThe agency’s redactions and incomplete explanations obfuscate the true purpose of the memorandum, and the excised portions belie the notion that it fell to the Attorney General to make a prosecution decision or that any such decision was on the table at any time.:
- Here's the whole "memorandom opinion":
- is McConnel's strategy for making the US a better place:
- According to the WSJ:
- "McConnell Says ‘100%’ of His Focus Is on Blocking Biden Agenda"
- This makes clear that for Republicans in the Senate
- O is for Obstruction
- In the House, Republicans are challenging Liz Cheney, and repeating the lie that the election was stolen by Democrats (even after Jan 6 proved that the former President was trying to steal the election with violence).
- This makes clear that for Republicans in the House
- L is for Lies.
- The Republican Tax Bill, under the former President, gave more than a TRILLION DOLLARS to rich people.
- This makes clear that for Republicans in office
- G is for Greed.
- Republicans in states run by Republicans all over the country are passing legislation to make it harder for Blacks, minority groups and poorer people to vote.
- This makes clear that for Republican office holders
- P is for Prejudice.
- Once upon a time, GOP stood for the "Grand Old Party",
- Lincoln freed the slaves.
- Eisenhower defeated the fascists, then built the Interstate road system.
- Now Republican officeholders no longer belong to the GOP.
- The new party for Republican officeholders is GLOP
- The assault on the people of the United States by the party of GLOP is serious.
- They persist in lies about the vaccine and masks that will kill Americans.
- They persist in lies about the election that threaten democracy.
- They persist in obstructing necessary legislation.
- (Then with gleeful hypocrisy lie by taking credit for it!!!)
- GLOP is not normal democratic policy debate. It is a serious assault on the health and essential democratic spirit of the US.
- will be leaving TBS in later June.
- Some time later, he will be hosting a "Variety" show on HBO Max.
- has been down for some time now!
- Verizon consolidated AOL and YAHOO! into "Oath", then "Verizon Media"...
- But ... then later sold off HuffPost, and closed other media projects, including BUILD (a video interview series) some time ago.
- Now Verizon is selling Verizon Media, including all of AOL and Yahoo! along with brands like with Engadget and TechCrunch to Apollo Global Management.
- Apollo Global Management is an "asset management" company. It is not clear if they have had any previous media management experience.
- The new media company will be called just Yahoo, and will be run by Guru Gowrappan who had been leading Verizon Media.
- Update 5/4/2021 -- In an interview on CNBC, Apollo suggested that they are particularly interested in the base of users of AOL & YAHOO, and monetizing the "assets" not so much by ads, as by financial information and processing services; the notions of serving "crypto", and providing "Robinhood" like features were teased.
- Once upon a time, AOL and Yahoo! were the most important Internet new media companies.
- But they have been unable to adapt to the changing fortunes of the business cycles, or to the changing landscape and possibilities of technology as fast, or as nimbly, or as profitably, as their competition.
- Verizon Media
- Apollo Global Management
- The Deal
- are divorcing after almost 30 years of marriage, three children, and creating one of the world's most important philanthropic organizations.
- Bill Gates, the creator of Microsoft, is one of the world's richest people with about $125 billion dollars.
- (Currently, Jeff Bezos, even after a multi-billion dollar divorce is the world's richest man with close to $200 billion dollars.)
- Because Bill Gates controls so much money and, with Melinda, is so important to international philanthropy, this divorce has public as well as private consequences.
- and Colin Davin all performed to support music education at the Thurnauer School of Music online Gift of Music Gala Benefit today.
- The Gift of Music Gala supports the scholarship fund, allowing students to learn music at the school, regardless of their financial situation.
- Joseph Polisi, President Emeritus and Chief China Officer of the Juilliard School, and the author of The Artist as Citizen was honored for his distinguished contributions to music and the arts.
- The program also celebrated the 80th birthday of Founding Director Dorothy Kaplan Roffman (who switched from in-person to virtual operations from one day to the next in March 2020, and after more than 30+ years, working 25 / 8, continues to lead the school).
- The Thurnauer School of Music
- Rob Kapilow and Bruce Adolphe contributed musical compositions; and all the musicians, including Francisco Nunez, leader of the Young People's Chorus of New York. spoke about the importance of music education.
- Artist Harvey Edwards created an image honoring Joseph Polisi and his worldwide influence on music and the arts.
- All the musical participants had participated in earlier in-person Gift of Music Galas where they had interacted directly and personally with the students at the Thurnauer school.
- Additionally, Steven Isserlis and Colin Davin participated in mash-ups with the students this year that, along with many other performances by Thurnauer students, were included in the program.
- The event began with a performance of Feel Good, by the Thurnauer Student Chorus; it included a great performance on the trumpet and a stirring tribute to Joseph Polisi by Wynton Marsalis; a brilliant classical guitar duet by Sharon Isbin and Colin Davin; and it concluded with a beautiful transcription of a Chopin Nocturne by Joshua Bell.
- Rob Kapilow, Francisco Nunez, and Program Host, Elliott Forrest, presented a preview of a major project at the Thurnauer School:
- Inspired by Faith Ringgold's children's book We Came To America, Rob is writing a score for chorus in a project that intends to inspire more people to lend their stories, poetry and art about their own -- and their family's -- coming to America.
- The Gala is available to be watched for the next month online.
- Contributions for the Gala scholarship fund are always welcome.
- Joseph Polisi received a signed, original copy of Harvey Edward's image.
- A limited number of copies of the image, celebrating the worldwide scope of music, were created.
- A numbered copy of the image is currently being offered at auction by the Thurnauer school until May 16. The first bid was for $3,000.
- is a serious and growing problem.
- The "Institute for Security and Technology" has released a study.
- Here is the presentation of their report:
- Here is the report:
- Here is the home page for the Institute: