Ed Harcourt – Until Tomorrow Then Review

first_imgBy James Lowe ****Ed Harcourt occupies the classically precarious position of being a good singer-songwriter. Such ability isn’t always particularly useful, commercial, or cool. So you can play a wistful piano, sing with cracked chords and strum under a tree in the pale autumn dawn? Then you can be a singer-songwriter. They come and go like internships for students: you feel you should give them a go but you don’t really want to spend all your time there.Harcourt alerted the world to his fragile presence with 2001’s Mercury-nominated LP Here Be Monsters, and has released five critically acclaimed albums since then. Being a best of, there isn’t a ‘bad’ song on here. They are all strong, from the bizarre, melancholic exuberance of ‘Born in the ‘70s’ to the Ryan Adams bar-room lilt of ‘This One’s For You’. Lyrical adventures abound, and the instrumentation kicks back from mid-tempo indie rock on ‘Watching the Sun Come Up’ to whispery strings on a rowing boat at midnight on ‘Something In My Eye.’ There’s enough variety and instrumental exoticism to merit further ear time and the general vibe of this album is that Harcourt is talented in an age that doesn’t understand or recognise such talent. Dinner party material? Possibly. But I’d rather listen to Harcourt with his romantic notion of life as overpowering and wildly affecting than, say, Norah Jones’s life as commercial lucky-dip.Harcourt’s voice, a combination of Tom Waits talking in a stage whisper to Nick Drake as Ryan Adams makes himself heard over the piano, is comfortable with mumble-into-the-microphone melancholy, shout-out-loud hoarseness or watch-that-vibrato timidity. Which is no bad thing, but the breath of these elders hangs heavy on the air, meaning that Harcourt is a good singer-songwriter, yes, but that can only get you so far nowadays.last_img read more

Quantum leap

first_imgTo grow or not to grow, that is the question. And while investment remains a problem for many, one rapidly growing company convinced its lenders on performance.Giles Foods has doubled the size of its bakery and invested £3.5m in new plant and equipment. “And that’s just the first phase,” says David Marx, sales and marketing director, talking about investment at the Milton Keynes Pain Artisan bakery.Giles supplies all the country’s leading supermarkets, as well foodservice via wholesale distributors, cash and carry outlets, quick-service restaurants and major pub chains. Its speciality breads and rolls are produced at Milton Keynes. Danish pastries and confectionery are produced at its Warminster, Wilts bakery. They include sweet tarts, which are enjoying equally sweet suc-cess. But that, in turn, means more invest-ment, so phase two is in the planning stage.The results of phase one can be seen in Giles’ new 45,000sqft area. Sensibly, it is highly automated as is now the pattern at bread plants throughout Europe.The new machinery includes a technologically advanced three-deck Mecatherm tunnel oven supplied by EPP the first of its kind to be installed in the UK along with new provers, spiral and blast freezers.And, according to Marx, there will be no let-up in the pace of investment, which has already seen the bakery double in size. In addition to the 45,000sq ft of space already developed, a new adjoining cold store and upgraded loading and distribution facilities are scheduled to come on-stream in spring 2011.Marx says: “The business has made a quantum leap. We make everything from sourdoughs to garlic breads, dough balls and focaccias. As well as doubling our capacity, we’ve achieved a massive increase in product quality, because one of the attributes of the new oven is that, among other things, it allows us to control the thickness of the crust.”For example, sandwich manufacturers are now coming to us and asking if we can produce a ciabatta-style product with a thinner top crust and a heavier sole crust, and we are able to say ’No problem’.”We’ve also been able to cut our input costs, reduce our carbon footprint and have achieved enormous efficiencies right across the business, including keeping labour costs under firm control.”Marx reveals that all these efficiencies mean Giles Foods has been able to minimise the impact of the recent increase in raw material prices. Says Marx: “There has never been anything like it in flour, commodities, energy, transport. However, the efficiency savings mean we’ve been able to suck in the majority of the rises, meaning the increase in our prices is, to the delight of customers, below the industry average.”He adds: “This investment is for the long term and not a piecemeal exercise. With it, we believe we have moved from becoming a secondary supplier of speciality breads to many of our large retail and foodservice customers to being their number one supplier.”He adds that the company will shortly embark on a massive new product development programme with reformulated and new frozen and chilled products scheduled to hit the market in spring and summer this year.last_img read more

EXCLUSIVE: Zigaboo Modeliste Details Late-Night Jazz Fest Traditions Ahead Of 19th Annual Funk Revue

first_imgIf you’ll be down in New Orleans for Jazz Fest this year, don’t miss out on all of the awesome late night music options taking place across the city. Learn more about all of the amazing music you can catch at this link. Every year, legendary New Orleans drummer Zigaboo Modeliste brings his “Funk Revue” to the Howlin’ Wolf to close out the late night festivities at Jazz Fest. Now in its 19th year, the Funk Revue has become the exclamation mark at the end of Jazz Fest, the final show that puts a cap on ten days of incredible music.Modeliste started the Funk Revue in 1998 at the Dream Palace, before moving it to the old Howlin’ Wolf in 1999. The show started at 4:20 AM, and it attracted a certain type of music fan who wants to see music deep into the night. The late (or very early) start time was a breakthrough for the jazz fest crowd, and soon every club was programming music later and later into the evening. In 2005, the show moved to the new Howlin’ Wolf, and it has stayed there ever since. It has evolved into one of the “must see” shows at Jazz Fest.With Zigaboo set to hit the Wolf on Sunday, May 7th to continue the influential tradition, we spoke to the man himself about the history of the Funk Revue, its impact on New Orleans and Jazz Fest, and what fans can expect for the 2017 edition of the event. See below for the full interview with Zigaboo Modeliste, and get pumped for Zigaboo’s 19th Annual Funk Revue.Live For Live Music: Tell me a bit about the history of the Funk Revue. What was the inspiration behind the project in the first place?Zigaboo Modeliste: Well, you know, part of being successful in this business is that you have to be improvisational sometimes, in terms of creating adventures where you get a chance to actually play and perform. You do different things differently, you market yourself differently, and you put yourself in different situations and hope that it works. When we first started, we put the Funk Revue at 4:20 AM. 4:20 in the morning! That’s kind of hard for the regular person who wants to come out and see entertainment. It was designed that way because people were staying up late and they wanted to hear music around the clock. It worked out the first time we did it, and we thought to ourselves, “we’re not trying to win any gold here. Maybe let’s go for a repeat.” So we did it another year, the same thing, and the crowd started getting bigger, and, you know, more people started going into it. At the time, we didn’t really know what we were actually trying to promote, other than good music to our fans, and any other constituents who would be interested in it.That went on for several years, and we had no competition, nobody was playing that late. People would be shutting down around 2:00 AM and people at those clubs would be dumping down to where we were, to keep the party going. So, as an extension of the initial party from the beginning, we just were out there doing it later.Since then, around 2004 or 2005, all the clubs started mimicking our act, and we started to have competition. The crowd size started going down a bit, so we thought to ourselves “we need to re-adjust, and start playing earlier.” So, that’s what we started doing: going on a lot earlier, we got a new crowd, a more diverse crowd. With the help of the club owners at the venue, that made it inspiring, that made it fresh, and we’ve been doing it now for some nineteen or twenty years.L4LM: That is truly amazing. I know that it’s impossible now to think of Jazz Fest and the festivities down in New Orleans without thinking of a late night scene. I know it’s not part of the official “Jazz Fest”, but I know for me and so many members of my generation it goes hand in hand. With that in mind, how does it feel to have created this institutional event that has inspired so many people in New Orleans?ZM: Well, I think that it serves a lot of purposes. It gave other musicians opportunities to follow suit and try to improvise on what they were doing. You know, with musicians, it’s not all about revenue, but at the same time, it is your occupation. And it gave the club owners another perspective on how long they could keep their clubs going, what rules needed to be changing. It changed a lot of things. I don’t want to take credit for any of that, but once you start a fire, if you can keep it going, keep it going. You don’t want to dull things out. I think the most inspiring part about it is, it’s not about the musicians themselves, it’s about the fans, and how to serve them better and make them want to come back and be repeat customers. You want to create interest in your own self and your art form.L4LM: If you’ve been doing things for 19 years, it seems you have figured out the winning formula to get fans to come back. It’s very impressive, and we’re excited for this year’s edition of the Funk Revue. I know in the past you’ve had a lot of different musicians, such as George Porter Jr. and Ivan Neville, as well as bands like Lettuce, Living Colour, Los Lobos, amongst plenty of other special guests at this how. Are there any fun plans for this year for the Funk Revue that you’d be willing to tell us about?ZM: It’s an interesting concept, and, I know from doing Jazz Fest for all these many years, all the musicians down there, they work triple hard, because that’s the two weeks that the revenue is in the area. They want to do gigs during the day, during the evening, and at night. Some guys gig three or four times a day, every day. It’s a matter of guys trying to survive, and harvest as much revenue as you can because that doesn’t yield like that after Jazz Fest is over all the time. So, at the end of Jazz Fest, when everybody’s all burned out, that does not spoil the appetite of the listener. They still want to hear good music. My policy’s always been to be inclusionary. If other musicians are interested in coming, they don’t have to pay to come in to see me, musicians never have to pay. If they want to sit in, they can sit in. IF they don’t want to sit in, they don’t have to, they need to be able to enjoy some downtime too! Within that realm, we never know who our guest is going to be sometimes. We go in with a definite order of what you’re going to get: you’re going to get some funk music, some more funk music, and on top of that, I’m gonna add some more funk music! What I want you to do is, while you try to absorb this, just keep your seatbelt tight because we don’t know who we’re going to see in there. I find it better that way; I don’t put pressure on anybody to have to be there, and if they show up, they show up because of the love of the music and the love to perform in front of a hungry crowd of people.L4LM: Sounds really cool. We’re excited to see who joins you this year, or who has the energy to join you, I should say. I know that you were named the 18th drummer of all time by Rolling Stone in their list of top 100 drummers, what are your thoughts on that?ZM: The first thing I’ll say is: God is good. I’m just happy to be in that number, because it’s only 100 people listed, and there’re around five million drummers in the world. It’s quite an achievement, as far as I’m concerned. I don’t want to be a judge of myself, but I will say this: since I started playing, I’ve only been true to my art form and just been trying to, if not progress it any further, certainly not have it be lacking. Just trying to do the best I can to maintain consistency in my playing and try to let other drummers, if they want to, recognize my art form, and if they want to use it to their desire, to their pleasures, that’s what it’s all about. Your peer group is important. Anyway, when it comes like that, from a magazine like that, where they’re not getting anything for complimenting me like this, I’m so appreciative, so thankful to be appreciated in that light.Don’t miss Zigaboo Modeliste’s 19th Annual Funk Revue, followed by members of Lettuce, Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe, and Prince’s band in the Michael Jackson vs. Stevie Wonder tribute, on Sunday, May 7th at The Howlin Wolf!– SHOW INFO –Artist: Zigaboo’s 19th Annual Funk Revue + Michael Jackson vs. Stevie Wonder Tribute Set w/ Organ Freeman in The DenVenue: The Howlin’ Wolf – 907 S Peters St, New Orleans, LA 70130Date: Sunday, May 7th, 2017Price: $25adv / $35dos (purchase tickets here)Time: Doors 9:00 PM / Show 10:00 pmlast_img read more

NSA and DHS designate Champlain College as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education

first_imgBURLINGTON, Vt.–The National Security Agency (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced this month the designation of Champlain College as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education (CAEIAE).The National Centers of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education Program provides “increased availability of learning in information assurance education through a network of leading institutions and authorities in Information Assurance (IA) education.” The designation recognizes academic programs related to computer security and IA as well as an institution’s overall commitment to solid IA practices. Champlain joins a group of 86 colleges such as Carnegie Mellon University, Boston University, Ohio State University, Norwich University and Pennsylvania State University in being recognized with this designation.Presentations to new centers were made during the annual conference of the Colloquium for Information Systems Security Education in Boston on June 5. Accepting for Champlain College were Dr. Robin Abramson, interim provost; Jim Hoag, director of Champlain’s Computer Networking & Information Security program; and Gary C. Kessler, director of the Computer & Digital Forensics program and the Champlain College Center for Digital Investigation (C3DI).The National Centers of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education Program is intended to reduce vulnerabilities in the national information infrastructure by promoting higher education in information assurance and producing a growing number of professionals with information assurance expertise in various disciplines. Champlain’s designation is valid for academic years 2007-2012, after which the College must successfully reapply in order to retain the designation.Champlain College was recognized for academic programs that are offered on campus and online to students and professionals from around the country. Champlain’s Computer Networking & Information Security program and Computer & Digital Forensics program are closely coordinated. The College was the first to offer an undergraduate digital forensics program online, and a master’s degree is now in development.Honored last year with a major grant from the U.S. Department of Justice, Champlain College launched its Center for Digital Investigation, where two Champlain instructors now spend half of their time working for Vermont law enforcement.The NSA awarded the first CAEIAE designations in 1999. The partnership between the NSA and DHS was formed in April 2004 and responds to Priority III of the President’s National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace of 2003 that directs the Federal Government to foster training and education programs to support the Nation’s cybersecurity needs, and to increase the efficiency of existing Federal cybersecurity programs.The President’s National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace refers to cyberspace as the nervous system of our nation’s critical infrastructures, and indicates that the healthy functioning of cyberspace is essential to our economy and our national security. Securing cyberspace presents a difficult strategic challenge, and information assurance education is a critical component in successfully meeting that challenge.Universities designated as National CAEIAEs are eligible to apply for scholarships and grants through both the Federal and Department of Defense Information Assurance Scholarship Programs.last_img read more

The Fastest ISPs in America, and Where You Live

first_imgThe Fastest ISPs in Americaand Where You Livefunction setCookie(name, value) { var expire = new Date(); var today = new Date(); expire.setTime(today.getTime() + 1000*60*60*24*4); document.cookie = name + “=” + escape(value) + “; path=/” + ((expire == null) ? “” : (“; expires=” + expire.toGMTString()))}function getCookie(Name) { var search = Name + “=” if (document.cookie.length > 0) {// if there are any cookies offset = document.cookie.indexOf(search) if (offset != -1) { // if cookie exists offset += search.length; // set index of beginning of value end = document.cookie.indexOf(“;”, offset) // set index of end of cookie value if (end == -1) end = document.cookie.length return unescape(document.cookie.substring(offset, end)) } }}function getMemberName(x) { // Check for new style cookie offset = x.indexOf(“cacheusername=”); if (offset != -1) { // new cookie offset += 14; // set beginning of value end = x.indexOf(“&”, offset); // end if ( end == -1 ) end = x.length; // get to end of string return unescape(x.substring(offset, end)); } else { start = (x.indexOf(“;”) + 1); end = x.indexOf(“;”, start); var name = x.substr(start, (end – start)); return name }}function displayPopUnder() { var cookieExist = getCookie(“”); if (document.referrer&&document.referrer.indexOf(‘altavista’)==-1) { if (document.referrer.indexOf(‘google’)==-1) { if (cookieExist == null) { setCookie(“”,””); var promopopup = window.open(“”,”promopopup”,”width=336,height=280″); self.focus(); } } }}function popUp(link, width, height) { var popUpWindow = window.open(link,”popUp”,’toolbar=0,location=0,directories=0,status=0,menubar=0,scrollbars=0,resizable=0,width=’+width+’,height=’+height);}function cj_window(a_path) { article_window=window.open(a_path,’article_window’,’width=415,height=550,scrollbars=yes,resize=yes,target=_top’); if (document.images) {article_window.focus();}}setCookie(“successpage”, document.location.pathname)function addLeadingZeros(numberString,maxLength) { if (numberString.length The Fastest ISPs in Americaand Where You Live ARTICLE DATE:  12.02.08 By  Jeremy A. Kaplanpc_magazine512:http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2335749,00.asp(link is external)When comparing the nation’s ISPs, there are few metrics of particular importance for the average consumer. How to determine which one is fastest, or which has the most satisfied customers? Sure, price plays a big role, but beyond that, what does one look for beyond sheer advertising dollars to ascertain which ISP is the best?Look no further than this analysis of results from PCMag’s SurfSpeed app, a utility that grabs pages (and page elements) from several popular Web sites to measure your actual Internet surfing speednot the bandwidth allocation your ISP quotes you. In the past few weeks, we’ve pored over data points collected from more than 17,000 profiles (that is, unique IP addresses)comprising over 200,000 individual teststo find out which are the fastest ISPs in America. Using this data, we’ve also taken a long, hard look at each state in the country, because fast overall service doesn’t translate into fast local service. One provider may have tremendous averages nationwide yet give short shrift to your corner of the country. In this story, we first discuss the United States as a whole; then we walk through a state-by-state analysis to see just how each of the Union’s fifty square up.In addition, SurfSpeed polls users on satisfaction with their ISPs, and we analyze the answers side by side with the speed data. It’s interesting to consider satisfaction alongside speed, but note that in only three states were more than 50 percent of users satisfied. The relative positions of ISPs coincide for the most part with the information from our annual Reader Satisfaction Survey, especially among cable service providers. But the satisfaction numbers from SurfSpeed point to a global truth: Faster is always better.And the Nation’s Fastest ISP Is…In the modern world of Internet service, two things go without saying: Fiber optic service is dramatically faster, and satellite service is substantially slower. Our results support these shocking statements. Among satellite services, including industry leader HughesNet and competitors like WildBlue, SurfSpeeds averaged just 145 kilobits per second (Kbps). Taken as a whole, DSL and cable connections were more than five times as fast. And fiber optic connections, including the well-publicized Verizon FiOS and lesser-known regional carriers like Utah’s Mstar and New Mexico’s CityLink Fiber, were 152 percent faster than that. Clearly, if you can switch up, you should. The fiber market will only grow, too, as companies install more and more lines. According to the Telecommunications Industry Association’s 2008 Market Review and Forecast, “During the next four years, more fiber will be deployed than during the so-called overbuilding years of the late 1990s and early 2000s.”The battle between cable and DSL (digital subscriber line) companies seems to have ended, and cable has been declared the victor. According to our results, the average cable service provider gets you online at 688 Kbps, while the average DSL lets you surf at just 469 Kbpscable connections, on average, are 47 percent faster. But which of them should you sign up for? Optimum Online from Cablevision tops the list, with an average nationwide SurfSpeed of 839 Kbps. But don’t turn to the nation’s largest cable service provider just for fast speeds; sign up for the service because 61 percent of users declared themselves either “Very” or “Extremely” satisfied. Cox Communications is the nation’s third-largest cable provider, but it comes in second on our tests, with an average speed of 774 Kbps and nearly half of users claiming satisfaction with the service.In fact, almost half of cable users were pleased with their ISPs’ service, and those cable services that weren’t high on the list still had users plumping for the middle choice”Satisfied” rather than “Somewhat Satisfied” or “Not Satisfied.” Take Charter Communications, for example. Charter calls itself “the third-largest publicly traded cable operator in the U.S.” (note the “publicly traded” part) and claims to “serve approximately 5.6 million customers in 28 states.” On our study, only 29 percent of users were “Very satisfied” or “Extremely Satisfied” with the service, but another 47 percent were just “Satisfied,” and only 24 percent rated their experience lower than that. In other words, even when cable’s bad, it’s good. The DSL market looks decidedly different. While digital subscriber lines and cable lines were for a time synonymous in people’s minds, both describing the wonderful world of “broadband,” cable has clearly taken off in terms of sheer speed. FrontierNet is the fastest DSL provider in the nation, averaging real-world SufSpeeds of 724 Kbps. The rural and suburban ISP leaves only 20 percent of its customers really excited about their Internet access, and another 50 percent think it’s good enough. FrontierNet is the exception. Even the slowest cable service provider was faster than the other DSL providers: Compare CenturyTel’s 520 Kbps with Alltell’s measly 357. And the average satisfaction numbers of DSL users speak for itself: Just 27 percent reported themselves satisfied.The Fastest ISP Where You LiveAnalyzing gigantic areas such as states and regions offers some insight, but it’s a challenge. Aggregate on too large a level and your results vanish. For example, states in the West get online faster than anywhere else in the country, at 565 Kbps, and the South proved the slowest part of the country at 551 Kbps. But at just 14 Kbps, the difference between those numbers isn’t very meaningful.Looking at the state level proves more interesting. Clearly, metropolitan areas are better cared for by Internet service providers, as a rule. More densely populated areas across the country reported better and faster service on our test. So we could have studied, say, the speed of access in St. Paul versus that in Albuquerque. But think of the overall speed of a state as a balance between how quickly cities get online and how effectively more rural areas are served. If half a state’s residents can’t even get broadband access, how well served is the state as a whole? After all, people in suburbs and more rural towns want to get online too, and they prefer faster Internet speeds, just like city folk.Speed is only half the picture. Availability of broadband services is a gigantic factor in how fast you get online, and the cost of that service also determines what percentage of area residents can afford it. If it’s too expensive and available in only half the state, the state’s overall speed rating will drop. To get the full picture of Internet access across the country, we turned to Centris, a research firm that collects information on the use of voice, video, data, and electronic products and services. According to Centris, New Jersey has the highest percentage of broadband penetration, with a whopping 80.2 percent, and speedy Nevada comes in second with 75.3 percent. In fact, broadband penetration was over 50 percent in more than half the country. But cost tells a different story: Folks from New Jersey pay a very low $33 on average for broadband access, but Nevadans pay nearly $40. Is it increased options? Or a regional thing? According to David Klein, executive vice president at Centris, “These findings are consistent with our view that competition and market dynamics are driven by the ability to deploy the fastest technologies at the local level. We will likely see even higher penetration rates and more market-share changes as service providers locally deploy new faster technologies such as DOCSIS 3.0 and universal wireless broadband.”A few notes about the results before we begin: The SurfSpeed application was designed to measure the real-world speed of your browserthe speed at which you surf the Internetnot the absolute speed of your Internet connection. Most line tests measure speed by sending you large files, and seeing how long it takes you to download them. ISPs cite numbers based on abstract mathematicsthe number of users divided by the theoretical line speed. Instead, the SurfSpeed application measures the time it takes your computer to visit several popular Web sites, giving you a real-world measure of your connection speed. As such, that result will differ, in some cases dramatically, from the number quoted by your ISP.Additionally, this information comes from readers of PCMag, not the population as a whole. We may not have as much information on a particular ISP in a particular region, but have tried to provide useful information anyway. In other words, this information should serve you as a guideline when you’re selecting an ISP but is by no means an absolute rating of speed. With that in mind, we present you with this comprehensive, state-by-state analysis of the U.S.A. How does your state rank?MethodologyWhen you download large files, high bandwidth generally translates into faster file-download speeds. But remember, a download also relies on the site that’s serving the file to you. If it has a small pipe (limited bandwidth) or it’s overloaded with users, you’re unlikely to see the speed that your provider touts. With that in mind, Bruno Sonnino, the author of many PCMag.com utilities, developed SurfSpeed for us as a test of real surfing speed. It’s a free download (registration required) from go.pcmag.com/utilities.Bandwidth testing sites download a single large file, initiating a single connection. SurfSpeed grabs pages (and page elements) from multiple sites with varying amounts of bandwidth. In addition, just like a real browser, SurfSpeed initiates multiple connections to get all of the page elements. Each connection takes time, and that becomes a part of the SurfSpeed equation.This behavior gives a unique measurement that more accurately reflects how you spend 90 percent of your time on the Web: surfing or waiting for a page to load. By default, the utility runs once per hour, “browsing” to top sites like AOL, eBay, Google, MySpace, Yahoo, and more. You can run it on the sites of your choice, but we considered results only from these presets.Once you run SurfSpeed, you can begin comparing your results with those of others. Each time you run a test, the results are sent to PC Magazine’s servers. This data is then used to compare your speed with that of others in your ZIP code, state, country, and the world. You can also see how your ISP compares both with other ISPs and with itself from state to state.For this story, we considered all the tests run from May 23, 2008, to October 15, 2008; that’s almost five months of testing. In all, the SurfSpeed 2.0 application had data from 17,333 users, and from those users we sampled 215,575 tests. Because each test hits ten Web sites, we had over two million data points to consider.No matter how fast your connection, occasionally sites won’t be available, pages won’t load properly, or downloads will take an inordinately long time to arrive. For that reason our research department helped us to identify “outliers” and clean the data so we could proceed with our analysis. When analyzing within a state, we considered only those ISPs and connection types for which we had at least five users.Our satisfaction ratings are based on user-reported information in the SurfSpeed application, which includes a five-item satisfaction index. We aggregated people who rated themselves as “Extremely Satisfied” or “Very Satisfied” under the category of “satisfied” users. Dissatisfied users include those who rated themselves as either “Somewhat Satisfied” or “Not Satisfied.”To complement our data, we took population figures from the U.S. government’s 2007 census estimates (the most recent data available) and land area in square miles, numbers we took from Wikipedia. To determine the penetration of broadband connections into households, and the average cost of those connections, we turned to Centristhe only national database that continuously collects household information on the use of voice, video, data, and electronic products and services.Download the charts: Speed by ISPs (PDF) Time of Day (PDF) Satisfaction by State (PDF) Speed By State (PDF) Speed by Connection Type (PDF) Satisfaction by ISP (PDF) The Northeast ARTICLE DATE:  12.02.08Over 17,000 users across the country ran our SurfSpeed application for a total of nearly a quarter of a million times, helping us to determine the speed of Web browsing in each of the 50 states. Roll your mouse over the Flash map below to see each state’s SurfSpeed rank, based on the average speed of area Internet connectionsa higher rank means faster surfing. Then scroll down the page to read our analysis of each state, to learn why it placed where it did and which regional ISPs were the fastest.ConnecticutPopulation: 3,502,309Area: 5,543 square milesWeb site: www.ct.gov(link is external)Average speed: 716 KbpsSurfSpeed rank: 5thSatisfied users: 41 percentMedian monthly price of broadband: $36Broadband penetration: 73.7 percentThe 5th-fastest state in the union is also one of the most densely populatedand amply served by ISPs. Cable companies clearly dominate among users, and Cox rises to the top within them, with speeds averaging 864 Kbpsover 200 Kbps faster than Comcast’s regional service. Residents weren’t yelling from the rooftops about their service, but they were stoic enough; a mere 17 percent reported being dissatisfied.DelawarePopulation: 864,764Area: 2,490 square milesWeb site: www.delaware.gov(link is external)Average speed: 647 KbpsSurfSpeed rank: 15thSatisfied users: 20 percentMedian monthly price of broadband: $35Broadband penetration: 63.3 percentDelaware may be the second-smallest of the United States, but it’s no speed slouch. The Diamond State came in 15th among PCMag readers, probably owing to the large number of Verizon FiOS users. The fiber-optic service averaged a speedy 940 Kbps in Delaware, but a mere 20 percent of residents reported satisfaction with their ISPs, and a whopping 53 percent were unhappy. Why so gloomy?MainePopulation: 1,317,207Area: 33,414 square milesWeb site: www.maine.gov(link is external)Average speed: 427 KbpsSurfSpeed rank: 40thSatisfied users: 62 percentMedian monthly price of broadband: $30Broadband penetration: 60.1 percentMaine’s in a tough spot on our survey, though you wouldn’t know it by asking users. Maine users reported the highest levels of satisfaction with their ISPsan impressive 62 percent of them claiming to be extremely or very satisfied. Yet the state placed 40th in terms of speed, with an average of just 427 Kbps. Maybe users are too busy enjoying the beautiful coastline and numerous national parks to care about their slow service?MarylandPopulation: 5,618,344Area: 12,407 square milesWeb site: www.maryland.gov(link is external)Average speed: 691 KbpsSurfSpeed rank: 10thSatisfied users: 49 percentMedian monthly price of broadband: $39Broadband penetration: 68.9 percentFast Internet access, satisfied customers, and great crab cakes: What more could you ask for? Maryland residents reported the fastest access from Verizon FiOS (of course), but a range of other decent local providers make for a cornucopia of service offerings. So why are people using HughesNet’s slow satellite service? With an average of 192 Kbps, those slow connections dragged down the state’s overall speed in our survey.MassachusettsPopulation: 6,449,755Area: 10,555 square milesWeb site: www.mass.gov(link is external)Average speed: 695 KbpsSurfSpeed rank: 9thSatisfied users: 43 percentMedian monthly price of broadband: $35Broadband penetration: 67.1 percentAs the 9th-fastest state in America, Massachusetts surfs along at a peppy 695 Kbps. Who led the pack? Cable service provider Comcast somehow delivers faster average speeds than Verizon’s FiOSat least according to SurfSpeed users in the Bay State. And Comcast averaged 872 Kbps, much faster than Verizon’s slow regional DSL service, which managed just 351 Kbps. Superfast surfing speeds and a Celtics championshipsounds like a plan!New HampshirePopulation: 1,315,828Area: 9,350 square milesWeb site: www.nh.gov(link is external)Average speed: 615 KbpsSurfSpeed rank: 17thSatisfied users: 24 percentMedian monthly price of broadband: $49Broadband penetration: 65.1 percentNew Hampshire came in 17th on our speed tests, with an average of 615 Kbps, for the most part thanks to Comcast’s respectable regional service. To the handful of Granite State users reporting an average of 483 Kbps with Verizon’s DSL service, we suggest rising up against your oppressors: Pick up the phone and call Comcast instead. Live free or die!New JerseyPopulation: 8,685,920Area: 8,729 square milesWeb site: www.nj.gov(link is external)Average speed: 727 KbpsSurfSpeed rank: 4thSatisfied users: 45 percentMedian monthly price of broadband: $33Broadband penetration: 80.2 percentProximity to New York City probably gives little New Jersey a big boost in terms of Internet access: ISPs clamoring to service the millions living across the Hudson run their trunk lines straight through the Garden State, which just happens to be the most densely populated of America’s 50 states. If you live here, you’ll do well with Verizon’s 969-Kbps fiber-optic service. But don’t hesitate to sign up for Optimum Online, either: Cablevision’s 887 Kbps cable lines deliver piping-hot Internet access that has consistently earned our reader’s approval.New YorkPopulation: 19,297,729Area: 54,555 square milesWeb site: www.ny.gov(link is external)Average speed: 714 KbpsSurfSpeed rank: 6thSatisfied users: 47 percentMedian monthly price of broadband: $36Broadband penetration: 72.9 percentNew York State boasts the largest city in the country, the 6th-fastest Internet accessand the nicest cabbies around, contrary to their reputation. New Yorkers are among the most satisfied, too, with 47 percent of users claiming to be extremely or very satisfied with their ISP. A lot of them are using Comcast, which blew by all other regional ISPs in our survey, averaging 1,050 Kbps; short of FiOS service in Washington and California, it’s the fastest in the nation. Regional powerhouse Time Warner averaged just 734 Kbps. FrontierNet raced ahead in New York as well: Its 792-Kbps service was the fastest regional DSL in the nation.PennsylvaniaPopulation: 12,432,792Area: 46,055 square milesWeb site: www.pa.gov(link is external)Average speed: 746.8 KbpsSurfSpeed rank: 3rdSatisfied users: 35 percentMedian monthly price of broadband: $33Broadband penetration: 52.5 percentLook out, Northeast! Pennsylvania boasts the highest speeds in the regionindeed, the third-fastest in the nation, at a collective average of 747 Kbps. The Quaker State also has some of the least satisfied users, ranking 9th on that stat, with 31 percent. The state seems dragged down by DSL connections, including Verizon’s piddling 438-Kbps service. Good citizens, switch over to the 1-Mbps FiOS service!Rhode IslandPopulation: 1,057,832Area: 1,545 square milesWeb site: www.ri.gov(link is external)Average speed: 516 KbpsSurfSpeed rank: 33rdSatisfied users: 57 percentMedian monthly price of broadband: $35Broadband penetration: 74.4 percentThe smallest state in the union is also the second-most-densely populated, according to the most recent census estimates. Dense areas usually mean better Internet access, yet Rhode Island is poorly served by ISPs, with a statewide average speed of just 516 Kbps (that’s 33rd place). But Rhode Islanders don’t care: 57 percent reported satisfaction with their ISPs, bringing their state’s ranking on the ISP satisfaction scale to second in the country. How peculiar! Clearly, Cox leads in the region, with 878-Kbps speeds.VermontPopulation: 621,254Area: 9,620 square milesWeb site: www.vermont.gov(link is external)Average speed: 391 KbpsSurfSpeed rank: 47thSatisfied users: 33 percentMedian monthly price of broadband: $30Broadband penetration: 56.3 percentVermont isn’t the least-populated state in the unionthat designation falls to Wyoming, with its 522,830 residents. But at just over 621,000, it’s the second-least-populated, even less populated than Alaska, according to the most recent U.S. census. Vermont also has some of the slowest broadband speeds in the country, with an average of just 391 Kbps. That’s probably because of the slow speeds of regional Comcast connections, which are about half of the national averages for the ISP. Verizon DSL speeds, on the other hand, mesh nicely with the national averages. The Midwest ARTICLE DATE:  12.02.08Over 17,000 users across the country ran our SurfSpeed application nearly a quarter of a million times, helping us to determine the speed of Web browsing in each of the 50 states. Roll your mouse over the Flash map below to see each state’s SurfSpeed rank, based on the average speed of area Internet connectionsa higher rank mean faster surfing. Then scroll down the page to read our analysis of each state, to learn why it placed where it did and which regional ISPs were the fastest.IllinoisPopulation: 12,852,548Area: 57,914 square milesuare milesAverage speed: 681 KbpsSurfSpeed rank: 11thSatisfied users: 34 percentMedian monthly price of broadband: $35Broadband penetration: 61.1 percentSitting pretty as the 11th fastest state, the Land of Lincoln offers a wealth of choices to the choosy surfer. Comcast posted the best numbers in the state, at 888 Kbps, but Mediacom Online was no slouch, at 669 Kbps. DSL providers Verizon and AT&T were certainly slower, at 598 and 519 Kbps, respectively, but they both beat the national average for DSL lines by a fair bit. All this and Chicago, too!IndianaPopulation: 6,345,289Area: 36,418 square milesAverage speed: 524 KbpsSurfSpeed rank: 31stSatisfied users: 34 percentMlast_img read more

Quadricentennial celebrations at the Burlington International Waterfront Festival

first_imgGovernor Douglas will host dignitaries from Canada, France and Britain for the signature celebration of the 400th anniversary of Samuel de Champlain s exploration of the lake that bears his name at the Burlington International Waterfront Festival starting Friday.     The Lake Champlain Quadricentennial is an exciting opportunity to celebrate, learn and deepen our appreciation of Vermont s fascinating history, rich culture and scenic landscape, said Governor Jim Douglas. Vermont is looking forward to hosting leaders and thousands of visitors from around the world for this historic event.The Governor will attend numerous events later this week and into the weekend as part of the Burlington International Waterfront Festival Quadricentennial celebration.  Highlighting the many events this weekend will be the unveiling of Quebec s gift to Vermont for the Lake Champlain 400 celebration at Waterfront Park in Burlington on Friday morning, welcoming speeches in City Hall Park on Saturday morning and a performance parade down Main Street in Burlington Saturday evening.  A complete list of the Governor s Quadricentennial related events can be found below.    Lake Champlain is just one of the many ties Vermont has with our neighbor to the north, the Governor said.  The Quadricentennial gives us another reason to celebrate our shared history, heritage and strong bond of friendship with Quebec, he added.  I hope Vermonters young and old have the opportunity to attend this exciting celebration.Champlain, a French explorer from Brouage, France, was also the founder of Quebec City.  Arriving at Lake Champlain from the north in early July 1609, Champlain and his guides entered the lake in a fleet of 24 canoes. Champlain s founding of Quebec City and subsequent exploration of Lake Champlain was the starting point of a permanent French presence in North America. The 400th anniversary commemorates this important historical moment in the region s history the first contact between European and Native American cultures in Vermont s Champlain Valley and the cultural contributions of the people living in Vermont today.Events are taking place throughout the summer and include a variety of heritage festivals, art exhibits, bike and paddling tours, culinary events, history tours, interactive activities, cultural demonstrations and community fairs.Governor Douglas public events:Friday, July 10, 200910:00 a.m. Quebec Sculpture Dedication and Reception, Burlington Waterfront, Burlington2:00 p.m. Opening of Wampum Belts of Chartres Cathedral, Shelburne Museum, Shelburne5:30 p.m. Quebec City Blues Cruise, Northern Lights Lake Champlain7:30 p.m. Quebec All-Stars Concert, Burlington Waterfront, BurlingtonSaturday, July 11, 200910:00 a.m. Quadricentennial Official Welcome, City Hall Park, Burlington5:00 p.m. Quadricentennial Ceremony, City Hall Reviewing Stand, Burlington5:30 p.m. Champlain 400 Performance Parade, Burlington8:30 p.m. From the New World Champlain Dance Pageant, Flynn Theatre, BurlingtonFor more information and a complete listing of the weeks events visit www.CelebrateChamplain.org(link is external).Source: Governor Douglas’ office.last_img read more

Seventh Generation launches first national ad campaign to educate consumers

first_imgSeventh Generation has been galvanizing the green revolution for decades, and over the company’s 21 years has become one of the most trusted brands of authentic, safe and environmentally responsible products for the living home. Now they are launching a campaign of words to back up decades of action, with the company’s first national integrated advertising campaign. Themed “Protect Planet Home,” the television, print and online advertising focus on Seventh Generation’s role in helping consumers protect their world from hazardous chemicals. This comes to life in the spot through the revolution consumers have been leading to replace unhealthy and hazardous products from their homes, and the leadership role Seventh Generation has played in this revolution. The core messages of safety and effectiveness are communicated through voiceovers such as “where the five second rule is extended”, and “no one holds their breath while they’re cleaning.” In testing, consumers found the spot appealing and motivating, and helped them understand what makes Seventh Generation unique, including the company’s heritage, dedication and leadership.“At Seventh Generation we have always helped consumers protect planet home by formulating safe and effective products and by disclosing ingredients on our labels,” said Chuck Maniscalco, CEO, Seventh Generation. “Consumers named their revolution; in a recent survey conducted by Sterling brands and Infinia group in 2009 on behalf of Seventh Generation, 42% said they would like to see consumers be more responsible in their buying decisions, shaped by their personal goals of caring for the health and wellness of their family.”The natural cleaning products category has grown 56% in the last year (IRI date, 52 weeks ending 11/29/09), as larger, conventional cleaning products companies have entered the marketplace with their “green” lines, and put significant marketing muscle behind them. In focus groups conducted by Seventh Generation, this has resulted in consumers who are increasingly confused about how to truly protect their most valuable assets – their family.“While competition is good, and helps strengthen the category, it was time for Seventh Generation to assert our leadership, and differentiate ourselves as a green company compared to companies that sell green products,” said Maniscalo. “That is why we are launching our first national integrated advertising campaign that communicates not only the benefits of our products, but also our values of caring for family and improving sustainability.”The goal of the campaign is to not only introduce consumers to the Seventh Generation brand, but also to educate about how they can become involved in the green revolution relevant to their personal world – their home. On the Seventh Generation web site, consumers will find tips and advice for disposing of household hazardous waste (in old cleaning products) and even a downloadable Label Reading Guide application for iPhones and mobile devices that deciphers common chemicals found in household products. Consumers are also encouraged to join the “Seventh Generation Nation,” a free community that enables members to receive coupons and special offers, participate in forums and receive a monthly e-newsletter.The “Protecting Planet Home” television campaign kicks-off on January 11 and runs through April (Earth month), with spots running on cable networks such as Bravo, Food Network and USA, along with national network spots on NBC’s Today Show and Ellen. Print advertising will commence in March issues and run in parenting and home magazines, including Good Housekeeping and Parents.Interpublic Group’s Carmichael Lynch out of Minneapolis created the spots, with Carmichael’s Jim Nelson as chief creative officer, Jan Gleie, director and executive producer Lisa Phillips.“Seventh Generation is the original brand of environmentally conscious, non-toxic cleaning products. They help make the world a healthier place, but even more important, they help make homes healthier places to live,” says Jim Nelson, chief creative officer at Carmichael. “The Planet Home is a symbol we’ll use to help educate and remind people that the world they care the most about — the home where they raise their family — can be made healthier by eliminating toxic chemicals and instead choosing natural products like the ones Seventh Generation has been making for more than two decades.”About Seventh GenerationSeventh Generation is committed to being the most trusted brand of household and personal-care products for your living home. Our products are healthy and safe for the air, the surfaces, the fabrics, the pets, and the people within your home — and for the community and environment outside of it. Seventh Generation also offers products for baby that are safe for your children and the planet.For information on Seventh Generation cleaning, paper, baby and feminine personal care products, to find store locations, and explore the company’s website visit www.seventhgeneration.com(link is external). To read more about Seventh Generation’s corporate responsibility, visit the Corporate Consciousness Report at: www.seventhgeneration.com/corporate-responsibility/2007(link is external).About Carmichael LynchCarmichael Lynch has earned a worldwide reputation for building brands through inventive ideas in advertising, digital and public relations. The agency boasts a portfolio of clients that includes Harley-Davidson, Subaru of America, Jack Link’s Beef Jerky, Trane, Calphalon, Seventh Generation and other envied brands. Carmichael Lynch Inc. is owned by the Interpublic Group of Companies Inc. (NYSE: IPG), New York. For more information, visit www.carmichaellynch.com(link is external).Source: BURLINGTON, VT- January 11, 2010 – Seventh Generation.last_img read more

Court’s professionalism effort now led by Justice Cantero

first_imgMark D. Killian Managing Editor When Raoul Cantero was sworn in as a justice of the Florida Supreme Court last month, he said he was “here to serve, not to be served.”Justice Cantero reiterated that pledge as he assumed the chair of the Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism.“So the fact that I am chair of this commission simply means that I’m here to help you in your endeavors in promoting professionalism,” Cantero told those attending the recent fall retreat of the commission and the Bar’s Committee on Professionalism in Tallahassee. “Promoting professionalism is one of the most important things that The Florida Bar can do, because it affects so many other aspects of the practice of law.”Cantero said he supports the efforts of the Bar’s Center for Professionalism, which was created in 1996 and is responsible for the implementation and operation of professionalism programs and activities across the state. The center’s mission is to support and encourage law students, lawyers, and judges to exercise the highest levels of professional integrity in their relationship with clients, other lawyers, the courts, and the public.“Every judge on the Florida Supreme Court believes this is not only a worthwhile endeavor, but an endeavor that should be given a priority in the practice of law and The Florida Bar,” Cantero said.Ultimately, Justice Cantero said, the courts are only as good as the lawyers who practice before them.“So promoting professionalism is promoting the entire judicial system,” he said. “We need you out there with young lawyers and older lawyers promoting the process of professionalism.”It seems like a coincidence that one of his first appointments as a justice is to lead the Commission on Professionalism because, Justice Cantero said, “professionalism is something that has been on my mind for my entire career.”Cantero said when he applied to become a justice, he told the Supreme Court Judicial Nominating Commission about his admiration of the efforts of Chief Justice Harry Lee Anstead to develop the commission and Center for Professionalism and said working to promote professionalism was one of the most worthwhile things a lawyer could do.“I pledged that if I was appointed I would continue those efforts on professionalism because I thought that was so important to the practice of law,” Cantero said, adding that Chief Justice Anstead, the first chair of the commission, was unaware of Cantero’s personal commitment to professionalism when Anstead appointed him to chair the court’s professionalism effort.Cantero said as a practicing lawyer he saw firsthand the need for encouraging professionalism.“To the extent that lawyers file frivolous discovery motions or make frivolous objections to discovery, that piles on the work that a trial judge has to do and takes away from the kind of work he should be doing — the legitimate work,” Cantero said. “To the extent that lawyers practicing before the Florida Supreme Court don’t make the right argument, miss the argument, or mis-cite a case, or don’t realize that a case has been overruled, that affects our decision-making process.”Cantero said he will do everything he can to assist the Center for Professionalism in its work. Court’s professionalism effort now led by Justice Cantero November 15, 2002 Managing Editor Regular Newscenter_img Court’s professionalism effort now led by Justice Canterolast_img read more

What would your members say?

first_img 11SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Joe Winn What do you get when you mix auto loan programs with a desire to help others? Well, approaches that make a difference, of course. So what do you get when … Web: credituniongeek.com Details Imagine a room filled with your members. All of them. Ones who have made your credit union their primary financial institution and those who hardly know you exist. Offer each a blank index card.A third grade teacher in Denver did this exercise with her students. What was asked of them? To write down what they wished their teacher knew about their lives. They could add their name or leave it anonymous. Surprising truths flowed. One explained how homework was challenging because they didn’t have pencils at home. Another lamented delays in getting their mom’s signature on school forms because they didn’t see her often. It was a moving exercise, and offered valuable, if heartbreaking, advice to the teacher.Before getting back to the credit union talk, let’s make it clear: Teachers like her are doing important work and should be recognized/compensated as such.Do you see how this exercise could be of value for your credit union? If you handed out index cards to all your members, what would be written?When I’m teaching martial arts classes, I often ask a student what someone will do if they use a certain move. “I don’t know,” is a fair answer. How can you be sure of their reaction? Well, you do that technique, and see their response!What will your members wish you knew? Well, you ask! We read articles daily about how to connect with Millenials (Gen Y). Like everyone else, they want a say. They want a deliberate effort to engage, not a new promotion or product. Connect and learn. What if it became an industry effort? Say, using social media under the hashtag #OurMembersWish. Now that’s @asmarterchoice I can support.There’s a fantastic TED Talk describing one way to get into a mission, rather than product, centric, mode of thinking with a process called Golden Circle. You’ll recognize it in use with companies like Apple and Harley Davidson, in people like Elon Musk, as well as every non-profit you know.The index cards? Yeah, they’re in that supply closet, just down the hall. Grab a bunch.last_img read more