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The Unseen Ballet: The Intersection of Technology and Humanity

first_imgAt Dell Technologies, we are technology optimists. Meaning we truly believe technology has the power to solve some of the world’s greatest challenges, break down barriers, and create opportunity for all. We work hard to bring this belief and our commitment to inclusion to life through our brand – from the advertising we create to the experiences we build not only for our customers but our communities and the world.We were inspired by one of our television spots which features a woman at a ballet performance who is visually impaired. Through a pair of advanced technology glasses, she is able to see a dancer twirling on stage for the first time.We wondered – could we bring this idea to life right here in our hometown of Austin, Texas, and give back to the community where we started it all? The answer was a resounding yes. After all, we’re optimists! And so, The Unseen Ballet was born. Earlier this month, in partnership with Ballet Austin and eSight, a leader in assistive technology, we equipped Austinites who are visually impaired with special glasses that enabled them to view a live performance of The Nutcracker with their families for the first time.With over 150 community members in attendance, this was a truly special event that brought families together this holiday season. One person in attendance was an eight-year-old girl named Lily who loves to dance. Lily was diagnosed with Optic Nerve Hypoplasia which has led to blindness in her right eye and limited vision in her left eye. Despite her love for dance, her disability had previously prevented her from seeing a ballet performance. She came dressed for the occasion in her very own ballet outfit, sat in the front, put on her glasses, and was able to see the ballet with her mom for the first time. A truly magical moment that demonstrates how technology can break down barriers and open the door to new possibilities. You can learn more about Lily and the Unseen Ballet in the video below: We hope that Lily, whose motto is “I can do even the hardest things,” will inspire the optimist in you. Visit here for more on The Unseen Ballet experience.last_img read more

Culturalist Challenge! Rank the Top 10 Broadway Roles for Josh Groban

first_img View Comments The Broadway.com staff is crazy for Culturalist, the website that lets you choose and create your own top 10 lists. Every week, we’re challenging you with a new Broadway-themed topic to rank. Grammy-nominated crooner Josh Groban has been teasing us about coming to Broadway for ages. Now he’s putting a deadline on his Broadway aspirations, and it has us daydreaming about what part would be a perfect fit. With that in mind, we’ve asked you to join us in dreamcasting the hunk with the golden voice. We want to know: What are your top 10 parts for Josh Groban to play on Broadway? Broadway.com News Editor Imogen Lloyd Webber kicked off this new challenge with her list of top 10 picks here. Now it’s your turn…STEP 1—SELECT: Visit Culturalist to see all of your options. Highlight your 10 favorites and click the “continue” button.STEP 2—RANK: Reorder your 10 choices by dragging them into the correct spot on your list. Click the “continue” button.STEP 3—PREVIEW: You will now see your complete top 10 list. If you like it, click the “publish” button.Once your list is published, you can see the overall rankings of everyone on the aggregate list.Pick your favorites, then tune in for the results next week on Broadway.com! Star Filescenter_img Josh Grobanlast_img read more

Weekend Picks: Spring Thaw Trail Run and Mountain Bike

first_imgSaturday, March 8th – The Grant at Willowsford, near Leesburg, VirginiaThe REV3 Adventure trail series caters to trail runners and mountain bikers.The series consists of three trail run events and three mountain bike events. Race one event or all six to earn the title of Trail Master. The group will crown a trail runner series champ, a mountain bike series champ, and the series champ of Trail Master.According to the group’s website, the race features dedicated private single-track trails at Willowsford and the classic technical trails at Fountainhead. Post-race food and refreshments are provided, including beer from local breweries. At Fountainhead racers can expect a hot dog and chili feast.If you raced last year in their Willowsford trail series, note that they are doing things a little differently in 2014. Now you’ll have two chances to be Trail Master–the Spring Thaw will count as one series, and the timing starts over with the Fall Foliage races.Come pound out some trails and keep that New Year’s resolution alive. The second annual Spring Thaw Dash will get you up, out, and saying good bye to the winter blues. Willowsford, a new community in Ashburn, Virginia, where the vision is “Inspired Living,” has a purpose-built trail system with a variety of terrain features, offering runners and riders a fun and moderately challenging course. You will take single track through Willowsford’s Conservancy areas, passing through open fields, pine forests, and thick oak groves. Come and experience the best of Virginia’s countryside on two wheels or two feet.Schedule:10:00 am – Trail run race start – 5k and 10k12:30 pm – MTB race start – Weekend Warriors and Trail Experts12:35 pm – MTB race start – Young Warrior & NewbiesClick here for more info.last_img read more

The Omni Homestead – Hot Springs, VA

first_imgCurrently, all guests ages 5 and older must wear a face mask in accordance with Virginia’s mandates and adhere to social distancing guidelines. For our snow sports, we will be implementing additional measures such as lift line barriers, designated entrances and exits, single direction traffic flow and thorough sanitizing of rental equipment between uses. Resort associates will manage the lift line to ensure adequate spacing is observed. Skiable Acres? 42 The iconic Omni Homestead Resort offers unparalleled charm and genuine hospitality. Located in the Allegheny Mountains of Virginia, the resort features a wide array of outdoor activities along with award-winning golf and a luxurious Spa. The Omni Homestead offers a host of activities, including carriage rides, trap, skeet, sporting clays, ice skating, archery, and The Homestead S’mores Express. Unwind and rejuvenate at The Spa at The Omni Homestead with a massage, facial, manicure, pedicure or body treatment. The adults-only Serenity Garden, adjacent to the Spa, features the Octagon Pool which is fed by two natural hot springs. Average Inches of Snowfall? 30 What activities are available beyond the slopes? How many beginner, intermediate, and advanced trails are there? Longest run? 1/2 mile Are there activities available in the off-season? Washington, D.C. – 3.5 hoursRichmond, Va. – 2.5 hoursCharlottesville, Va. – 2 hoursRoanoke, Va. – 1 hourLexington, Ky. – 6 hrsCharlotte, N.C. – 4.5 hrsWinston Salem, N.C – 3.5 hrsAtlanta, Ga. – 8 hrsChattanooga, Tenn. – 5 hrs What are the best runs and why? Q: What do you offer beginners who want to learn to ski? At The Omni Homestead Resort, the health and safety of our guests and associates has always been, and always will be, our top priority. COVID-19 has changed every facet of our world and the way we do business. In an effort to Stay A Part of Safety, we have updated our already thorough cleaning guidelines and implemented additional processes and procedures to ensure your health, safety and comfort. The Omni Safe & Clean initiative follows the guidelines set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Virginia Executive Orders 63 and 67. Protocols and guidelines from these authorities are expected to evolve, and as such, so will our below processes and procedures. Similarly, these guidelines meet or exceed the “Stay Safe” initiative set forth by the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA). To expedite the check-in process, we strongly encourage advance ticket purchases via our online store or upon arrival at the resort’s front desk. Waivers and rental forms will also be available at the front desk and should be completed prior to arriving at the Mountain Lodge. For guests renting equipment for two or more days, their reserved rentals will be marked with their name and room number and available at Kober’s from 8:30-10:30 am on their second, third or fourth day. Pass Prices?$199 individual Where is the best place to stay in the area? What are the best après ski activities at the resort and in the area? What guidelines and protocols have you put in place to keep visitors and employees safe during COVID-19? Number of lifts? 2 Opening Day Date? December 24 Driving Distance to Nearest Major City/Cities? The Omni Homestead offers a comfortable, relaxed and uncrowded area ideal for beginners. Home to the Sepp Kober Ski School, The Omni Homestead maintains an experienced team of ski and snowboard instructors who offer private lessons for all levels. Our best run is Upper Main, which offers a spectacular view of the valley. Plus, it is just steep enough to provide a bit of confidence building for our novice skiers and riders. 3 beginner, 5 intermediate, 1 advanced Do you offer any family friendly activities? The Homestead offers a variety of family friendly activities including indoor and outdoor pools, ice skating, archery, carriage rides and historic tours. One of the most popular family pastimes is making s’mores on the lawn. Families also enjoy challenging each other in DownTime, our family game area which features mini bowling, air hockey, arcade games and more. Base/summit elevation? 2,500 ft/ 3,200 ft After a day on the slopes, enjoy brisket and a Virginia craft beer at Kober’s at the Mountain Lodge. Or, make reservations for dinner in Jefferson’s where the focus is on regional cuisine such as the Highland County Rack of Lamb and Allegheny Trout. On Friday and Saturday nights, relax by the fireplaces in the Great Hall with a high-end bourbon, Scotch, gin or wine from the Lobby Bar. Reservations will be required for tubing and ice skating and limited to 25 persons per session. Ice skating sessions will be 75 minutes with a 15-minute break between sessions for cleaning and rink maintenance. In the warmer months, The Omni Homestead offers falconry, horseback riding, golf, hiking, carriage rides, zip lining, archery, mountain biking, fly fishing and other activities. Number of Slopes? 9last_img read more

Senate passes Great American Outdoors Act

first_imgHere you can reach out to encourage your Representatives to co-sponsor H.R. 7092: https://www.votervoice.net/STS/campaigns/64379/respond Outdoor lovers, ready for some good news? “By combining two longstanding public lands measures, the Great American Outdoors Act manages to promote better outdoor experiences today while ensuring that future generations will have the same special places to enjoy tomorrow,” Anders Reynolds, Federal Legislative Director for the Southern Environmental Law Center said in a press release. “Permanent funding for the popular Land and Water Conservation Fund is the perfect complement to the effort to address the $20 billion maintenance backlog in our National Parks—often called America’s best idea. SELC applauds the Senate’s passage of this important legislation and encourages the House of Representatives to act on it and other deserving public lands priorities soon.”  Here you can find a break down of the impact for Southeastern states: https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5d13d61e9f576c000131df23/t/5ee6637a945e9b489ad0dee7/1592157051053/NPS+Visitor+Spending+Effects.2019.pdf Helpful Resourcescenter_img The bill now heads to the House of Representatives where it is expected to have bipartisan support. In March, President Trump requested such a bill when he tweeted, “I’m calling on Congress to send me a Bill that fully and permanently funds the LWCF and restores our National Parks.” He is expected it sign it into law.   Yesterday, the U.S. Senate voted 73-25 to pass the Great American Outdoors Act, considered the biggest federal lands bill in 50 years. The bill fully funds the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) at a level of $900 million every year. The LWCF is considered the single largest funding source of outdoor recreation. Additionally, up to another $9.5 billion over five years will be provided to address backlogged maintenance issues in national parks and the U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management and the Bureau of Indian Education. Seventy percent of the $9.5 billion will go to the park service.  A teenager stands on the top the Little Stony Man mountain waiting for sunset in the Shenandoah National Park – Photo from Getty Imageslast_img read more

El Salvador Creates First Elite Unit to Combat Gangs

first_img On April 19, a total of 302 Salvadoran police officers graduated from the first anti-gang unit, specialized in intelligence and even in the language of the so-called ‘maras,’ although the two most feared groups, MS-13 and M-18, have a truce that has reduced crime. With blue-black uniforms, sawed-off assault rifles, and ski masks, the agents, including 12 women, were sworn in on a soccer field at the National Public Safety Academy in Comalapa, 44 km southeast of San Salvador. The unit “was created with the aim of strengthening the fight against criminal organizations like gangs,” President Mauricio Funes declared after presiding over the graduation ceremony. “I want to express my gratitude for the dedication of those who are demonstrating that in order to have an active, efficient, honest, and brave force confronting a powerful enemy that is attacking the very entrails of the Salvadoran state, a great deal of courage and bravery are required today,” Funes exclaimed. Accompanied by security authorities, President Funes emphasized that the agents were “highly trained in the areas of intervention, investigation, and intelligence.” Between June and July, the elite unit, which is led by Commissioner Pedro González, will receive new training from the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). “I want to emphasize that these 302 new police officers underwent a rigorous selection process, with the aim that they meet the requirements of suitability, both moral and physical integrity, and commitment in carrying out their work with the Salvadoran people,” Funes commented. Of the 302 agents, 68 are part of an intelligence division, 174 make up the intervention (suppression) group, and 60 are part of the the investigative division, according to official reports. The unit’s primary task will be to combat extortion, which is widely practiced by gangs, chiefly targeting bus owners and retailers, but also families. The police force, which will be deployed in coming days, will fall under the new anti-gang subdirectorate of the National Civil Police (PNC), which will also include the 150 personnel of what is known as the Special Police Operations Group and the Transnational Anti-Gang Center. As of February, El Salvador had an average homicide rate of 65 per 100,000 inhabitants, making it one of the world’s most violent countries. By Dialogo April 23, 2012last_img read more

Helping our members save for retirement

first_imgDid you know that almost half of all Americans have no retirement savings at all? This is an alarmingly high amount of people who have not been able to plan for their future. A few weeks ago was National Retirement Security Week, designated to helping people put themselves in control of their future finances. Retirement savings should be discussed more than just one week of the year, it is an important issue all year long.One-third of the American population has an income of $28,000 or less, which makes it extremely difficult to save for retirement. With all the monthly expenses that people have such as rent/mortgage, groceries, and utilities, the one thing they can put off is retirement savings.One effective way to help credit union staff, members and those in your communities understand what life might be like after retirement is through the Foundation’s “Retire on Track” Retirement Fair program. This is a goal-oriented and interactive experience, similar to Reality Fairs for teens, that allows participants to imagine their life in the future to better focus on a present plan to get there. continue reading » 6SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Woman Stabbed Man to Death in Coram, Cops Say

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York A homeless woman was arrested for allegedly stabbing a 55-year-old homeless man to death in Coram on Wednesday night, Suffolk County police said.Ada RobinsonOfficers responding to a 911 call at a strip mall on Middle Country Road found that Ralph Anthony had been stabbed at 7:28 p.m., police said.He was taken to Brookhaven Memorial Hospital Medical Center in East Patchogue, where he was pronounced dead.Ada Robinson, 60, was charged with first-degree manslaughter. She will be arraigned Wednesday at First District Court in Central Islip.Homicide Squad detectives are continuing the investigation and ask anyone with information about this incident to call them at 631-852-6392. All calls will be kept confidential.last_img read more

Long-Running Fight Over Downtown Development Finally Turns a Corner

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York By Neal Lewis Vacancy rates for stores in Farmingdale are down to just 3 percent. There’s a new buzz of activity with family events and after-work concerts all signaling that this downtown is on the rise. It creates an infectious energy that underpins the growing appeal of Long Island’s latest downtown developments.For over a decade I’ve served on the Nassau County Planning Commission, and it’s remarkable how the discussions of proposed multifamily housing have evolved. The questions frequently asked today are: Is the proposed development in a downtown? Is it near transit? Is it consistent with “smart growth” Is it walkable, with stores nearby? Is it affordable?Increasingly, proposed projects come to the commission with community support already established, because developers understand that they must address local concerns about traffic, parking, impact on schools, and street-appeal.The change in tone is due in part to ongoing public education by entities like the Long Island Index, which has highlighted the competitive positioning of LI and the “brain drain” of college graduates leaving the Island for regions with more housing options. Credit is also due to Vision Long Island, which focuses on working with communities “from the bottom up.” This nonprofit group recognizes projects that successfully implement “smart growth” principles such as walkability, mixed-use, transit access, community collaboration, and a clear sense of place.Both organizations have emphasized the advantages of transit-oriented downtown developments that increase density where it can be handled most efficiently and decrease pressure to build on open space that should be preserved.There are significant environmental benefits to “smart growth” developments that reduce reliance on cars, maximize the use of infrastructure, and concentrate vitality. Sustainability is enhanced when all of that is achieved.The greatest challenge now is to make downtown developments affordable, so that those earning more modest incomes, including recent college graduates, can live on their own on Long Island. Typically, the multifamily rental housing that is being proposed is either luxury or senior housing.New York State requires that 10 percent of new multifamily housing be affordable, but only under certain circumstances. The requirement does not apply to rental properties, and it only applies to subdivisions when a “density bonus” incentive is sought. Even then, the developer can build the affordable units in another community or avoid the requirement altogether by paying into a fund.A policy recently adopted by the Village of Garden City may provide a better solution. It comes in the wake of lengthy litigation and responds to a federal judicial ruling, which may signal that federal courts will no longer tolerate exclusionary zoning.The policy requires that new multifamily subdivisions be at least 10-percent affordable. The affordable units must be built at the same time and in the same community; there is no option to pay into a fund, and the 10-percent affordable set-aside is mandatory, rather than merely incentivized.Another solution is to revisit the minimum size of apartments as required in local codes. Smaller apartments with newly designed, space-efficient, convertible furniture could enable costs to be reduced without reducing functionality.The demand for affordable downtown housing is clear. At the smart growth developments that are being built, there are few vacancies. The question is: Will the Long Islanders who want to live downtown be able to?Long Islanders increasingly prefer that option for themselves and their children. A recent survey by the Long Island Index found that while 15 percent of Long Islanders currently live in an apartment, a condo or a townhouse, 29 percent said they want to live in one of those options in five years. In addition, a majority of LI residents supported raising height limits in local downtowns to build apartments—a change supported by 70 percent of residents aged 18-34. And 60 percent of the Island’s residents said the lack of affordable housing is a very or extremely serious problem.Long Islanders want more affordable housing downtown. Although most of the new units being built are not affordable, there has been a change in tone and substance heard in planning board and town board hearings across Long Island. Many new multifamily projects have already been approved and built. This experience should pave the way for more downtown housing options in our future.Neal Lewis, a resident of Massapequa, is executive director of the Sustainability Institute at Molloy College and a member of the Nassau County Planning Commission.Illustration by two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Walt Handelsmanlast_img read more

Cisco Webex sees surge in users as companies operate remotely

first_imgTopics : “What we are doing now [is that] we want to help businesses in Indonesia, communities [and] the education sector with free services. Anyone can use Webex for free,” Cisco Systems Indonesia managing director Marian Kacaribu told reporters on March 26 via a video conference on the Webex platform.“We hope that it can help enterprises and the continuity of business so that it can minimize the impact [of the pandemic] on productivity and the economy,” she added, explaining that before the outbreak, the company had only offered a 40-minute limit to its free services.As of now, Cisco Systems Indonesia is offering a broad range of free services, including an unlimited number of meetings, capacity of up to 100 people in every meeting without a limit in duration, unlimited messaging, as well as access to Webex Teams, team collaboration services where users can conduct group chats, video calls, share documents and use collaboration tools such as the whiteboard feature.Marina said considering there had been a spike in usage, the company had made sure that its backend system could support the growing number of users and would continually adjust its capacity to enhance user experience. Web conferencing platform Cisco Webex has seen a surge in usage numbers as companies and education institutions around the world switch to working remotely and distance learning during the COVID-19 pandemic, the company’s data indicates.The company recorded 4 million meetings globally on March 18 alone, nearly double the number of meetings that took place on its platform before the outbreak. In the first 20 days of March, there had been an accumulated 7 billion minutes of meetings on Webex, with the duration of the meetings 22 percent longer than usual.The company also saw a drastic increase in users signing up on its platform. On March 16, the number of newly registered users reached 240,000. center_img Security is also an aspect the company prioritizes. Webex has installed a user verification system so that companies and other institutions can be certain that their virtual rooms can only be accessed by their employees or other designated members.For additional protection, the company is offering a 90-day trial for its Cisco Umbrella and Cisco AnyConnect, in which the former feature serves as the first line of defense against threats on the internet and the latter simplifies secure endpoint access. The offer will be available until July 1. In the education sector, Cisco Systems Indonesia has been collaborating with the Education and Culture Ministry to help support the ministry’s distance learning program. Other education institutions that were already on the platform, for example, Gadjah Mada University (UGM), have strengthened their coordination with the company to scale-up operations. Marina noted that UGM would conduct up to 8,000 online courses over Webex..last_img read more