Friday, April 29, 2016

Professor Klaus Schwab founded what was originally called the European Management Forum, as a non-profit foundation based in Geneva, Switzerland.  It drew business leaders from Europe, and beyond, to Davos for an Annual Meeting each January.  Initially, Professor Schwab focused the meetings on how European firms could catch up with US management practices.  He also developed and promoted the ‘stakeholder’ management approach, which based corporate success on managers taking account of all interests:  not merely shareholders, clients and customers, but employees and the communities within which they operate, including government.  Events in 1973, namely the collapse of the Bretton Woods fixed exchange rate mechanism and the Arab-Israeli War, saw the Annual Meeting expand its focus from management to economic and social issues.  Political leaders were invited for the first time to Davos in January 1974.  Two years later, the organization introduced a system of membership for ‘the 1,000 leading companies of the world’.  The European Management Forum was the first non-governmental institution to initiate a partnership with China’s economic development commissions, spurring economic reform policies in China.  In 1987, the European Management Forum became the World Economic Forum and sought to broaden its vision to include providing a platform for dialogue.  World Economic Forum Annual Meeting milestones during this time include the Davos Declaration signed in 1988 by Greece and Turkey, which saw them turn back from the brink of war, while in 1989, North and South Korea held their first ministerial-level meetings in Davos.  At the same Meeting, East German Prime Minister Hans Modrow and German Chancellor Helmut Kohl met to discuss German reunification.  In 1992, South African President de Klerk met Nelson Mandela and Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi at the Annual Meeting, their first joint appearance outside South Africa and a milestone in the country’s political transition.  In 2015, the Forum was formally recognised as an international organisation.  It is now on the next phase of its journey as the global platform for public-private cooperation.

In late May 2003, the Library of Congress completed the purchase of the only surviving copy of the first image of the outline of the continents of the world as we know them today—Martin Waldseemüller’s monumental 1507 world map.  That map has been referred to in various circles as America's birth certificate, and for good reason—it is the first document on which the name America appears.  It is also the first map to depict a separate and full Western Hemisphere and the first map to represent the Pacific Ocean as a separate body of  water.  Martin Waldseemüller, the primary cartographer of the map, was a sixteenth-century scholar, humanist, cleric, and cartographer who had joined the small intellectual circle, the Gymnasium Vosagense, organized in Saint-Dié,France.  He was born near Freiburg, Germany, sometime in the 1470s, and died in the canon house at Saint-Dié in 1522.  During his lifetime, he devoted much of his activities to cartographic ventures, including the famous world map, a set of globe gores (for a globe with a 3 inch diameter) and, the Cosmographiae Introductio (a book to accompany the map) in the spring of 1507; the 1513 edition of the Ptolemy Geographiae; the Carta Marina, a large world map, in 1516; and a smaller world map in the 1515 edition of Margarita Philosophica Nova among other items.  Waldseemüller’s 1507 map was a bold statement that rationalized the modern world in light of the exciting news arriving in Europe as a result of explorations sponsored by Spain, Portugal, and others—not only across the Atlantic Ocean, but around the African coast and into the Indian Ocean.  The map must have created quite a stir in Europe, since its findings departed considerably from the accepted knowledge of the world at that time, which was based on the second century A.D. work of the Greek geographer, Claudius Ptolemy.  To us, the 1507 map appears remarkably accurate; but to the world of the early sixteenth century it represented a considerable departure from accepted views regarding the composition of the world. Its appearance undoubtedly ignited a debate in Europe regarding its portrayal of an unknown continent (unknown to Europe and others in the Eastern Hemisphere) between two huge bodies of water, the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, and separated from the classical world of Ptolemy, which had been confined to the continents of Europe, Africa, and Asia.  By 1513, when Waldseemüller and the Saint-Dié scholars published the new edition of Ptolemy's Geographiae, and by 1516, when his famous Carta Marina was printed,  Waldseemüller had removed the name America from his maps, perhaps suggesting that even he had second thoughts in honoring Vespucci exclusively for his understanding of the New World.  Instead, in the 1513 atlas the name America does not appear anyplace in the volume, and the place of America is referred to as Terra Incognita (Unknown land).  In the1516 Carta Marina, South America is called Terra Nova (New World), and North America is named Cuba, and is shown to be part of Asia.  No reference in either work is made to the name America.  Yet, cartographic contributions by Johannes Schöner in 1515 and by Peter Apian in 1520 adopted the name America for the Western Hemisphere, and that name became part of accepted usage.  John R. Hébert  Read more at

BookCon is an annual fan convention established in 2014 in New York City.  Taking the name format from other fan conventions such as Comic-Con, BookCon was established to combine pop culture and the book industry.  The second BookCon took place in May 2015.  BookCon is run by ReedPOP, which also organizes New York Comic Con, Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo, Star Wars Celebration, and other events.  BookCon was created to boost the image and attendance of long-running book fair BookExpo America  The third BookCon will be held May 11, 12, and 13, 2016 at McCormick Place in Chicago.

A.Word.A.Day with Anu Garg  BLEND WORDS
clairaudience  (kler-AW-dee-uhns)  noun  The supposed ability to hear what is inaudible.  A blend of clairvoyance + audience (the act of hearing), from audire (to hear).  Ultimately from the Indo-European root au- (to perceive), which also gave us audio, audit, obey, auditorium, anesthesia, aesthetic, and synesthesia.  Earliest documented use:  1864.
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From:  Andrew Pressburger  Subject:  Blend words  One portmanteau coinage I am still inordinately proud of after some fifty years past its creation is the name I gave to a late afternoon Christmas brunch I had in Montreal.  Adding to the already existing blend of breakfast and lunch, I came up with brinner, i.e. brunch and dinner, thus partaking of a Yule Brinner.  I hope fellow linguaphiles still remember the noted actor of such memorable films and musicals as Anastasia and The King and I (in whose name the -e is not only silent but invisible, too).
From:  Jorge Del Desierto  Subject:  Blend words  In French, the term for blend words is mot-valise or suitcase words.

September 18, 2014  The Royal and Ancient Golf Club at St. Andrews is no longer just for men.  The R&A became the latest golf club to end years of male-only exclusivity when its members voted overwhelmingly in favor of inviting women.  The vote was effective immediately.  "I can confirm that The Royal & Ancient Golf of St. Andrews is now a mixed membership club," R&A secretary Peter Dawson said in a statement.  Dawson said more than three-quarters of the club's 2,500 members worldwide voted, with 85 percent in favor.  The members also voted to fast-track a "significant" number of women to join in the next few months.  Augusta National, home of the Masters, decided two years ago to invite women to join.  Unlike the R&A, Augusta National did not have a written policy that banned women.  Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and South Carolina financier Darla Moore were the first female members.  While the R&A members have access to the clubhouse behind the first tee at the Old Course, they belong to a club, not a golf course.  The seven golf courses at St. Andrews are open to the public.  The Royal & Ancient governs golf everywhere in the world except for the United States and Mexico.

Millennials have surpassed Baby Boomers as the nation’s largest living generation, according to population estimates released this month by the U.S. Census Bureau.  Millennials, whom we define as those ages 18-34 in 2015, now number 75.4 million, surpassing the 74.9 million Baby Boomers (ages 51-69).  And Generation X (ages 35-50 in 2015) is projected to pass the Boomers in population by 2028.  Generations are analytical constructs, and developing a popular and expert consensus on what marks the boundaries between one generation and the next takes time.  Pew Research Center has established that the oldest “Millennial” was born in 1981.  To distill the implications of the census numbers for generational heft, this analysis assumes that the youngest Millennial was born in 1997.  With immigration adding more numbers to its group than any other, the Millennial population is projected to peak in 2036 at 81.1 million.  Issue 1463  April 29, 2016  On this date in 1899, Duke Ellington, American pianist, composer, and bandleader, was born.  On this date in 1945, Catherine Lara, French singer-songwriter and violinist, was born.  

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Outsiders don't get Long Island; most New Yorkers don't understand it . . . What off-islanders see is the 24-karat gilding along the edges where the money flows . . .  Where it Hurts, a novel by Reed Farrel Coleman

Ona is a Chon (Selknam) language of Argentina.  It is most closely related to the Tehuelche language.  Ona is a seriously endangered language, still spoken today by only a handful of elders on Tierra del Fuego.  Some linguists consider Ona and Selknam to have been distinct languages while others consider them dialects of a single language, but with so few speakers surviving, the point is nearly moot.  Tehuelche (Aoniken) is a Chon language of Argentina, still spoken today by only a handful of Patagonian elders.  It is most closely related to the Ona language.

When is a Patagonia toothfish not a Patagonian toothfish?  When it’s a Chilean sea bass.  This name change was part of a larger marketing campaign that transformed a once-obscure Arctic fish into a common menu item in high-end restaurants across the world–leading to a frenzy of overfishing, and an inevitable population crash for the poor toothfish.  Tricky wordplay crops up all the time when it comes to fish.  Slimefish became orange roughy, Asian carp became silverfin, and the evocative whore’s egg or sea urchin is now better known as uni.  Other changes reflect changing sensibilities:  it’s probably been a while since you saw mahi-mahi listed as dolphin.  The renaming phenomena isn’t limited to species names.  Tuna  “loin” taps into associations with a tender beef loin, despite the fact that, lacking pelvises, tuna don’t actually have loins

Kiwifruit, Actinidia chinensis, was formerly known as the Chinese gooseberry.  Surprisingly, although it is associated with New Zealand, kiwifruit actually originated in the Chang Kiang Valley of China.  New hybrids include the baby kiwis, which are green, smooth, about the size of table grapes, and eaten much like them.  Today, California provides 95 percent of the US crop.  Out of the four main varieties, the most popular is the "Hayward," a variety developed by New Zealand horticulturist Hayward Wright.  Luckily, the opposite growing season of New Zealand makes kiwifruit available year-round in the Northern hemisphere.  New Zealanders do not take kindly to the fruit being referred to as a kiwi, preferring kiwifruit. The kiwi is a small flightless bird native to New Zealand, a term New Zealanders often use in reference to themselves.  Peggy Trowbridge Filippone

Garam Masala is the Indian equivalent of French herbes de Provence or Chinese five-spice powder.  The recipe changes from region to region within northern India and can be varied according to whim.  Here, rosebuds (found in Indian or Middle Eastern markets) add an exciting floral note, but you can substitute black cardamom, fennel seeds (in the style of Kashmir), or a teaspoon of royal cumin (shahi or kala zeera, also found in Indian markets)—or just eliminate the roses altogether.  Once you taste the difference that this simple powder makes in your cooking, you will find it worth the investment of cupboard space.  As a rule Garam Masala is only added at the last step of cooking, almost like a fresh herb, because it tends to become bitter if cooked too long.

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From:  Janet Blixt   Subject:  apricity  An apricot is a sun you can hold in your hand.
From:  John van Rosendale  Subject:  apricity  There’s a charming French term, lézarder ... to bask in the sun like a lizard.
From:  Cleve Callison  Subject:  Wordstock/wordhoard
In your post of 3/29/16, you referred to “our wordstock”.  May I suggest an alternative, the great Anglo-Saxon “wordhoard”, as in the following line from Beowulf:  “That noblest of men answered him; the leader of the warrior band unlocked his wordhoard.”

He fought off the Minnesota impulse to be polite at all costs.  Paraphrase from Shoot to Thrill,  Monkeewrench series #5 by P.J. Tracy

Find definitions for sunrise, sunset, moonrise, moonset, transit, civil twilight, nautical twilight, and astronomical twilight at

Twi means two or twice.  Middle English, Old English; cognate with German zwie- (Old High Germanzwi-), Latin bi-, Greek di-.  Find examples of word starting with twi--such as twifold and twilight--at

BI and BIN mean TWO.  There is a word BIS meaning TWICE, but it is not often used.  BI is used more often than BIN but both are commonly used.  Find examples at  Issue 1462  April 27, 2016  On this date in 1749, the first performance of George Frideric Handel's Music for the Royal Fireworks took place in Green Park, London.  On this date in 1992, Allison Iraheta, American singer-songwriter (Halo Circus), was born.  

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

The story of Yogi Berra's remarkable life began on May 12, 1925, in an ethnic neighborhood of St. Louis known as The Hill, where young "Lawdie Berra"--the pronunciation was the result of his Italian-immigrant mother, Paolina's, inability to say "Larry"--became best friends with Joe Garagiola, another son of Italian immigrants who also went on to become a major leaguer and later, a broadcaster and television personality.  It was Garagiola who publicized and, some said, invented many of the "Yogi-isms" for which Berra became famous later in his career.  Larry Berra became "Yogi," according to the biography on his official website, when another boyhood friend, Bobby Hofman, thought he bore a resemblance to a Hindu character in a movie.  To the current generation, Yogi Berra was a funny little man known for the malaprops, real and invented, that have become part of the lexicon.  But to his teammates for 19 major league seasons--18 of which were with the Yankees--and to opposing pitchers, Berra was a fearsome hitter who batted better than .300 three times, drove in more than 100 runs five times and finished with 358 home runs, 305 of which came when he was a catcher. At the time he retired, that was a record for a player at the most demanding position on a baseball field.  Defensively, Berra was respected as a keen handler of pitchers and an agile fielder with a strong throwing arm. Later in his career, he made a successful switch to the outfield, patrolling the spacious left field in the original Yankee Stadium at 37 years old.  And as a manager, Berra was one of a handful who led a team in both the American and National Leagues to the World Series, having managed the New York Mets to the NL pennant in 1973.  Wallace Matthews 

non sequitur  noun  a statement that is not connected in a logical or clear way to anything said before it  See also
malapropism  noun  an amusing error that occurs when a person mistakenly uses a word that sounds like another word but that has a very different meaning 

The fictional Mrs. Malaprop, in Sheridan's play The Rivals, utters many malapropisms.  In Act 3 Scene III, she declares to Captain Absolute, "Sure, if I reprehend any thing in this world it is the use of my oracular tongue, and a nice derangement of epitaphs!"  This nonsensical utterance might, for example, be 'corrected' to, "If I apprehend anything in this world, it is the use of my vernacular tongue, and a nice arrangement of epithets", although these are not the only words that can be substituted to produce an appropriately expressed thought in this context, and commentators have proposed other possible replacements that work just as well.  Other malapropisms spoken by Mrs. Malaprop include "illiterate him quite from your memory" (instead of 'obliterate')', and "she's as headstrong as an allegory" (instead of alligator).

incipit  noun  The opening words of a text, manuscript, early printed book, or chanted liturgical textLate 19th century:  Latin, literally '(here) begins'.

How many of these starting words can you recognize from literature:  "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times"  "It was a dark and stormy night"  “As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect.” 
How many of these starting notes can you recognize from music:  "so la so mi, so la so mi";  "so so la so do ti";  "mi mi mi do" OR "so so so me";  "so mi do mi so do".  Answers follow.

Well-known incipits from literature"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times" is from  A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens  "It was a dark and stormy night" by Edward Bulwer-Lytton is the opening sentence of his novel Paul Clifford.   “As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect.” comes from The Metmorphosis by Franz Kafka. 

Well-known incipits from music  "so la so mi, so la so mi":  Silent Night, Holy Night;  "so so la so do ti":   Happy Birthday to You;  "mi mi mi do" OR "so so so me":  Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, first movement;  "so mi do mi so do":  Star Spangled Banner.  (Incipits from music are usually in notation, sung or played--so you can see rhythm as well as melody.)

Over the past decade, the Center for Great Neighborhoods (CGN) has rehabbed and sold twenty-two homes at prices ranging from $90,000 to $210,000 to new homeowners of varied income levels in the Westside neighborhood of Covington, Kentucky.  From 2008-2013, the aggregate pre-rehab value of CGN-produced homes was $309,146.  After rehab, the aggregate sales price for these homes jumped nearly 1,200% to $3,645,700.  As a result, property values in the neighborhood have climbed, helping existing homeowners build equity while also boosting the local tax base.  “Recently, our buyers have been a mix of young professionals and empty-nesters,” said CGN Neighborhood Development Specialist Adam Rockel.  “Additionally, many of our buyers have been people that had been previously renting in Covington.  We presume they like living in Covington so much that they want to stay here for the long term which we see as a very positive indication of the overall positive outlook of the city and the neighborhood specifically.”  Jerod Theobald  Read more and see pictures at

Green almonds have the briefest whisper of a season in the spring before their shells harden and start looking (and tasting!) more like the almonds we know and love.  Green almonds consist of both the fuzzy green outer hull and the soft inner nut—it's that soft inner part that will eventually grow and harden into an almond.  You can eat the entire green almond at this point, fuzzy outside and all.  The whole almond has a crisp, watery texture and a tart flavor, like a cross between a green apple and a green grape.  Try tossing the whole almond with a little good olive oil and some sea salt for an easy and elegant party snack.  Here's the trick, though:  you have to buy these almonds right when they're fresh.  They should be a soft green color with no brown spots.  They'll keep refrigerated for a few days, but are best eaten right away. 

Fresh green almonds start in late March and go until late April, said Nadine Hariri, whose family owns the Middle East Market in Toledo, Ohio.  Almonds aren’t true nuts but rather are drupes—better known as stone fruits—with a fleshy exterior surrounding a kernel or pit.  Early in the season, the tender unripened almonds can be eaten in their entirety: simply bite in to enjoy the crispness, both in texture and flavor.  As they ripen on the tree, the fruits become firmer, while the shells become more bitter and less appetizing.  “Lemon, garlic, and salt are the main things to garnish them,” Mrs. Hariri said of the green almonds.  They should be washed and then left moist on the outside, which will enable them “to catch the salt” or other flavorings you might dip them into.  Familiar ripened almonds are prized ingredients in countless dishes, both sweet and savory.  Romesco sauce, from the Catalan region in Spain, is a blend of almonds and roasted red peppers that’s thickened with bread crumbs.  White gazpacho—a classic chilled soup, but less familiar than the bright-red tomato-based variety—features almonds puréed with garlic, often with the additions of cucumbers and grapes to contribute some sweetness.  Mary Bilyeu  Issue 1461  April 26, 2016  On this date in 1886, American blues singer (nicknamed Mother of the Blues) Ma Rainey, was born and named Gertrude Malissa Nix Pridgett.  On this date in 1958, the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad's Royal Blue made its final run from Washington, D.C., to New York City after 68 years, the first U.S. passenger train to use electric locomotives.

Monday, April 25, 2016

AP Stylebook announces changes to use of Internet and Web  Effective June 1, 2016 with the launch of the new AP Stylebook, the word internet will be written in lowercase.  Per another tweet – “Also, we will lowercase web in all instances – web page, the web, web browser – effective June 1.”

Most Americans believe libraries do a decent job of serving the education and learning needs of their communities and their own families.  A new survey by Pew Research Center shows that 76% of adults say libraries serve the learning and educational needs of their communities either “very well” (37%) or “pretty well” (39%).  Further, 71% say libraries serve their own personal needs and the needs of their families “very well” or “pretty well.”   Read 46-page report at

The National Trust for Historic Preservation is partnering with Howard University to breathe new life into the school’s Founders Library.  The nonprofit organization has named the library a national treasure, a designation that ensures that the group will work to preserve the character of the historic building.  The trust is helping the university develop a renovation strategy to repurpose underused spaces in the library and add research technology.  Perched atop a hill overlooking Howard’s campus, Founders opened in 1939 as the largest and most extensive research facility at a historically black university.  The four-story Colonial Revival was designed by African American architect Albert I. Cassell, who, Frederick said, was inspired by Philadelphia’s Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were debated and adopted.  Congress appropriated $1 million for the construction of the library, which was the most expensive building on a college campus at the time.  Although Founders has been primarily used as a library, it served as the home of Howard’s law school from 1944 to 1955.  During that time, Charles Hamilton Houston and Thurgood Marshall used the site to craft the legal strategy at the heart of the Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court case that desegregated the nation’s public schools.  Founders houses the Moorland-Spingarn Research Center, one of the world’s largest repositories of historical records documenting the global black experience.  The center has first editions of preeminent African American books, including titles by Zora Neale Hurston, and it is home to the papers of singer, actor and activist Paul Robeson, as well as those of Harlem Renaissance-era philosopher and critic Alain Locke.  Danielle Douglas-Gabriel

Michael Kenji Shinoda was born on the 11th February 1977 to Muto and Donna Shinoda. He and his brother Jason, whom Mike calls Jay, were raised in Agoura Hills, California.  From very early on Mike developed his artistic skills, when the family went out for dinner and Mike would finish his meal early he would be given napkins to draw on to keep him quiet rather than disrupt the other diners.  His mother also arranged piano lessons for Mike when he was three/four years old, he started with classical music for the first 12 or so years and then moved onto hip hop, learning loops and hooks.  Mike has mentioned that he felt awkward at school and found it difficult to fit in with his ethnicity being half Japanese, half American, he has joked that kids often thought he was Latino.  “My family was interned and I learned that some of my relatives were taken to the Santa Anita racetrack to live in horse stalls before they were taken to the camp” in California .  “It was the story of your typical Japanese-American family during that time, but a lot of people don’t know about it.  I had a hard time getting the story out of my family because they don’t like to talk about it.  But when I heard it, I knew I had to put that story out there.”  Mike also produced and sang on a Cypress Hill song, Carry Me Away which features on their album Rise Up.  In addition to this he also contributed a chapter to the book On Gratitude, which is a collection of chapters written by celebrities on the theme of gratitude.  In 2010 Mike was honored at the East West Players 44th Anniversary Visionary Awards for his work in the arts and performing arts.  “I don’t concentrate on raising awareness of Asian Americans, it’s just what I do, it’s simply me” – Mike at the East West Players 44th Anniversary Visionary Awards

Kenji - Fort Minor | Japanese Internment  3:51

April 23, 1616 is recorded as the death date for two literary masters:   English playwright William Shakespeare and Spanish novelist Miguel de Cervantes.  William Shakespeare and Miguel de Cervantes don't have much in common, although they lived in the same era, greatly influenced following generations, and are both regarded as virtuoso writers.  Life dealt the writers different cards--clearly less favorable in the case of the Spanish novelist.  The English bard was born in 1564 in Stratford-upon-Avon.   Miguel de Cervantes is 17 years Shakespeare's senior:  He was born in 1547 in Alcala de Henares, a town near Madrid.  Shakespeare attended his home town's renowned grammar school, where he was taught Latin and the basics of rhetoric and poetics.  Cervantes, from a family of impoverished nobility, studied theology at the University of Salamanca.  William Shakespeare never went to university. In fact, seven years of his late youth are completely undocumented.  In 1592, 28 years old at the time, he emerged again, alluded to as an upstart by playwright Robert Green, which has led scholars to believe that by then, Shakespeare was relatively well known.  He certainly was a member of the "Chamberlain's Men," a renowned actors group that changed its name to "King's Men" during the reign of King Jacob I.  From that point on, Shakespeare made a huge splash with his plays and novellas.   Cervantes and his brother were taken prisoner by Ottoman pirates in 1575. Their father offered up his entire fortune and their sister's dowry as ransom, but only Miguel's brother was set free, while Miguel was held as a slave by the Ottoman Sultan's governor of Algiers for five years.  He tried to flee four times and was finally ransomed by Trinitarians in 1580.  Legend has it that Cervantes only survived his attempts to escape because the governor was impressed by the man's courage and because he hoped for a handsome ransom.  His first--and unsuccessful--play, "Los Tratos de Argel," reflected what Cervantes went through during his years as a prisoner in Algiers.  Success continued to elude him, however, so in order to pay his bills, the Spaniard again enlisted as a soldier in 1580.  Unlike Shakespeare, who was a very successful author and businessman, Cervantes was never able to support himself with his writing.  Shakespeare co-owned first the Globe Theatre, and later the more exclusive Blackfriars Theatre--and made a fortune that allowed him to live in the second-largest house in his hometown.  Cervantes, on the other hand, had a temporary job as a purchasing agent for the Spanish navy and landed in prison again in 1597-98 and in 1602.  That's where he started writing his literary masterpiece, Don Quixote--the story of "The Ingenious Gentleman Don Quixote of La Mancha."  Don Quixote, a parody of the chivalric romances popular in the 16th century, was an immediate hit.  But it didn't make the novelist a rich man:  Cervantes sold the rights for an unknown sum to his publisher.  Centuries later, in 2002, a group of 100 top international writers voted the novel "the most meaningful book of all time" in a poll organized by editors at the Norwegian Book Clubs in Oslo.  Don Quixote is actually regarded as the birth of the genre of the novel in literary history.   Shakespeare left London for his hometown Stratford a few years before he died at the age of 52.  Cervantes, though innocent, was embroiled in a murder trial.  It's not clear whether he served a prison sentence or not, but in 1605, Cervantes published the first volume of Don Quixote, to be followed by volume two 10 years later.  The death date recorded for both Shakespeare and Cervantes is April 23, 1616.  Shakespeare was buried at Holy Trinity Church in Stratford.  Cervantes' remains vanished in a mass grave, to be identified many centuries after his death, in 2015.  The initials M.C. on a casket, and the wounds on his chest and hand were clues to the identity of the bones.  The Spanish author actually died 10 days earlier than his English contemporary--the countries used different calendars back then.  England used the Julian calendar, while Spain had already adopted the Gregorian calendar.  Issue 1460  April 25, 2016  On this date in 1917, Ella Fitzgerald, American singer-songwriter and actress, was born.  On this date in 1959, the Saint Lawrence Seaway, linking the North American Great Lakes and the Atlantic Ocean, officially opened to shipping.

Friday, April 22, 2016

QUOTES by American journalist Edward R. Murrow  (1908-1965)
“A nation of sheep will beget a government of wolves.”  “We cannot defend freedom abroad by deserting it at home.”  “We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty.  When the loyal opposition dies, I think the soul of America dies with it.”  “The speed of communications is wondrous to behold.  It is also true that speed can multiply the distribution of information that we know to be untrue.”

QUOTES by Arnold Eric Sevareid (1912-1992) one of a group of elite war correspondents hired by pioneering CBS newsman Edward R. Murrow, and thus dubbed "Murrow's Boys".  "I have never quite grasped the worry about the power of the press.  After all, it speaks with a thousand voices, in constant dissonance."  "The most distinguished hallmark of the American society is and always has been change."  "Next to power without honor, the most dangerous thing in the world is power without humor."  Eric Sevareid Farewell  Nov.  30, 1977  3:57

A U.S. district court judge has once again taken a look at three publishers’ case against Georgia State University’s e-reserve and ruled that, in 41 of 48 cases, no copyright infringement took place.  The ruling at, a 220-page walk-through that applies the four-part fair-use test to each of the 48 cases, is seen by copyright experts as a complicated decision that won’t be of much help to universities in determining fair use, as it relies on revenue data not normally available.  Still, observers described it as a win for proponents of fair use and another loss for the publishers.

Publisher, editor, and award-winning children’s book author James Cross Giblin died on April 10, 2016.  He was 82.  Giblin was born in Cleveland in 1933 and grew up in Ohio.  He studied at Northwestern University before transferring to Western Reserve University (now Case Western Reserve University) in Ohio, receiving his B.A. in 1954.  Giblin received an M.F.A. in creative writing in 1955 from Columbia University.  As a child he took an early interest in reading, and in drawing comic strips, which he has said was greatly encouraged by his mother.  This passion persisted and he worked on school newspapers throughout junior high and high school and began to pursue playwriting in college.  He stayed in New York City after earning his degree at Columbia to do so, but when that career path didn’t go as planned, he took at job at Criterion Books in 1959, and soon turned an eye toward specializing in the children’s book field.  In the early to mid-1960s Giblin was an associate editor at Lothrop, Lee & Shepard, then moved to Seabury Press in 1967 and became editor-in-chief, spearheading the development of the children’s book line there, later called Clarion Books.  When Houghton Mifflin bought Clarion in the late 1970s, Giblin moved to the company as Clarion’s publisher.  In 1980 Giblin saw his first children’s book published, The Scarecrow Book (Crown), written with collaborator Dale Ferguson.  Giblin went on to write more than 20 books for young readers, mainly nonfiction, historical nonfiction, and biographies.  Shannon Maughan

Feminist and author Gloria Steinem and Hollywood producer Brian Glazer are among this year's winners of the Books for a Better Life Award.  The New York City-Southern New York Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society presented the awards April 18, 2016.  The awards honour "self-improvement" authors and help raise money for programs and services helping people with MS.  Steinem was commended for her memoir "My Life On the Road" and Glazer for "A Curious Mind," co-authored with Charles Fishman. Glazer's credits range from the Oscar-winning "A Beautiful Mind" to "Splash" and "Apollo 13."  Others receiving awards included Ann Ogden Gaffney for "Cook for Your Life: Delicious, Nourishing Recipes for Before, During, and After Cancer Treatment," Sarah Hepola for "Blackout" and Megan Feldman Bettencourt for "Triumph of the Heart."

Product placement is a form of advertising--usually not involving ads--in which branded products and services are noticeable within a drama production with large audiences.  Product placements (also called embedded marketing)  are presented in way that will generate positive feelings towards the advertised brand and are implemented, mentioned, or discussed through the program.

April 19, 2016  In an unusual step for an American corporation, Ben & Jerry’s heavily promoted the arrest of the company’s senior management on social media and in a press release that explained:  “why Ben and Jerry just got arrested”.  “It all comes down to a simple idea that we believe in whole-heartedly:  if you care about something, you have to be willing to risk it all--your reputation, your values, your business--for the greater good,” the release said.  Jerry Greenfield and Ben Cohen were arrested while participating in the Democracy Spring protests, a two-week series of demonstrations beginning on April 11, 2016 at the US Capitol.  The demonstrations are not affiliated with any presidential candidate, but are calling on politicians at all levels of government “to commit to fight for reform to save our democracy and ensure political equality”.  The co-founders were released in time to host a Monday night event at George Washington University, where they gave students free ice cream and spoke to them about politics, including their support for Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders, who inspired a limited edition Ben & Jerry’s ice cream flavor:  Bernie’s Yearning.  Ben & Jerry’s social media accounts have been dominated by coverage of the protests, which have been called Democracy Spring and Democracy Awakening, and some of the company’s board members and employees joined the co-founders at demonstrations on the Capitol steps.  Amanda Holpuch 
On April 21, 2016, Cheerios sent out a tweet with the a simple “Rest in peace” message against a purple backdrop, with a Cheerio to punctuate the i, and #prince.  Is this product placement? 

Prince sold more than 100 million records, won seven Grammys and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004.  Here’s a look at the lengthy career of the ambitious musician, who died at 57.  John Woo, Robin Stein and Yousur Al-Hou  April 21, 2016

46 Environmental Victories Since the First Earth Day by Brian Clark Howard  Issue 1459  April 22, 2016  On this date in 1970, the first Earth Day was celebrated.  On this date in 1977, Optical fiber was first used to carry live telephone traffic.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Revered architect Pietro Belluschi’s last residence has been studied, copied and awarded.  But no one on the planet knows this Northwest Regional mid-century modern better than Pietro’s son, architect Anthony Belluschi, who now owns the famous hilltop house with his wife, Marti.   “Today’s need for economy makes us avoid pompously designed monuments, and in so doing we have found that much significance can be imparted to simple materials such as wood or brick, and much warmth and feeling may be achieved by the judicious use of such intangibles as space, light, texture and color . . . " - Pietro Belluschi, 1950  See how he applied this philosophy to the Menefee House in Yamhill, also built in 1948.  Anthony Belluschi received Restore Oregon’s 2013 DeMuro Award for preserving, restoring and expanding the meticulous engineered and crafted 1948 single-story home his father created at the end of a ridge in Portland's West Hills.  Revolutionary at the time, Pietro employed native wood and glass to frame the city skyline that he eventually helped shape with office towers, museums and churches.  After Pietro retired as dean of Massachusetts Institute of Technology's School of Architecture and Planning, he returned to Portland where his reputation for innovation and elegant buildings began.  The move was prompted by a tempting offer to buy this house from his original client, Mrs. D.C. Burkes.  It is incredibly poignant that Pietro spent his last years here, before passing away at 94 in 1994, and that his son and daughter-in-law refinished wood, replaced worn floors and made modifications that the family, modernists and architecture experts agree would have been approved by the exacting Pietro Belluschi.  Drawing from conversations the two had decades ago, Anthony conceived of ways to upgrade the kitchen, wiring, plumbing and insulation as well as improve the master bedroom and expand the house by 1,200 square feet.  Anthony converted an original breezeway with a trellis into an elongated gallery with a skylight that gracefully joins the old with the new.  The white-walled gallery has an original cedar side door that opens to the house’s existing master bedroom and library.  On the other side of the gallery is a concealed white door that leads to the new multipurpose media room with guest quarters and a loft space.  Shoji screens are a design link to the new Japanese-style gardens.  Changes took place over three years and in stages.  Janet Eastman

PRESERVATION NEWS  * The first Sears Tower in Chicago, a 14-story structure built in 1905 reopened in November 2015.  Renamed Nichols Tower, it serves as a hub for job training, arts education, and other community programs.  * Window Preservation Alliance (WPA) is a network of professional window restorers from the U.S. and parts of Canada.  The WPA helps homeowners who want to preserve their old windows.  * MIT's Alpha Theta Chapter of Sigma Chi's brick row house, built in 1900, has been restored and received a 2015 Preservation Achievement Award from the Boston Preservation Alliance.  LDa Architecture & Interiors and Sea-Dar Construction restored the facade, the grand central staircase, and the interior common rooms.  They integrated new systems, and built a fifth-floor addition not visible from the street.  * Former Building A, an 1879 dormitory for retired sailors, reopened in September 2015 as an expansion of the Staten Island Museum.  Preservation Magazine  Spring 2016

Ohio libraries tout heavy use, economic value cited in study  Ohio likes its libraries more.  That’s the gist of a new study from the Ohio Library Council comparing library use in Ohio with that in other states.  The council has long known that Ohioans like their libraries—now it says it has the data to quantify the affection.  Ohioans average 7.5 library visits per year, the highest per-capita rate in the country and 51 percent above the national average, according to new research by Columbus-based analyst Howard Fleeter.  The 77 percent of Ohio residents holding a library card ranks behind only Minnesota and is well above the 55 percent national average.  Analyzing 2013 data from the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services, Fleeter also concluded that Ohio’s cost per library transaction of $2.88 ranks 41st highest in the nation, 68 cents below the national average.  “We’re delivering a very high level of service at a very low cost,” Fleeter said.  Jim Siegel  Read more at

The Thirty-Nine Steps is an adventure novel by the Scottish author John Buchan.  It first appeared as a serial in Blackwood's Magazine in August and September 1915 before being published in book form in October that year by William Blackwood and Sons, Edinburgh.  It is the first of five novels featuring Richard Hannay, an all-action hero with a stiff upper lip and a miraculous knack for getting himself out of sticky situations.  The novel formed the basis for a number of film adaptations, notably:  Alfred Hitchcock's 1935 version; a 1959 colour remake; a 1978 version which is perhaps most faithful to the novel; and a 2008 version for British televisionA comic theatrical adaptation by Simon Corble and Nobby Dimon for a cast of four actors premiered in 1995 at the Georgian Theatre Royal in Richmond, North Yorkshire, before embarking on a tour of village halls across the north of England.  In 2005 Patrick Barlow rewrote the script, keeping the scenes, staging and small-scale feel, and in June 2005 this re-adaption premiered at the West Yorkshire Playhouse,  On 15 January 2008, the show made its US Broadway premiere at the American Airlines Theatre; it transferred to the Cort Theatre on 29 April 2008 and then moved to the Helen Hayes Theatre on 21 January 2009, where it ended its run on 10 January 2010.  It reopened on Stage One of New York's Off-Broadway venue New World Stages on 25 March 2010 and closed on 15 April 2010.  The Broadway production received six Tony Award nominations, winning two—Best Lighting Design and Best Sound Design with the London show winning an Olivier in 2007 and two Tony Awards in 2008.  The play also won the Drama Desk Award, Unique Theatrical Experience.

N-grams are strings of consecutive units from a longer text.  N-grams can be words, but they can also be phonemes or single characters; in principle, there’s no reason why they can’t be entire sentences or paragraphs (but in practice that undermines their application).  Let’s use the first sentence of Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address for an example:  Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Using words as our unit of measure, four, score, and, seven, and years are all n-grams of length 1 (they are 1-grams or unigrams).  Each additional word is also a 1-gram.  Four score, score and, and seven, and seven years are also n-grams, but of length 2 (2-grams or bigrams).  You can see how this works: four score and and score and seven are 3-grams; four score and seven is a 4-gram, and so on.  In computational linguistics, where this idea is used heavily, n-grams can help predict things, such as which word comes next.  In our example sentence, for instance, there are two 2-grams beginning with “and”—and seven, and dedicated.  Looking at the entire short address, more appear:  and so, and proper, and dead, and that.  As more text is analyzed, the list will grow and patterns will emerge.  Google’s Ngrams data is a good place to start when looking at n-grams. They’ve not only scanned and analyzed over 5 million books, but the database is publicly available with an-easy-to-use search feature.  Of course, as wonderful as this is, it’s got limitations.  The two that you’re most likely to run into are that it doesn’t include everything (only books and some periodicals) and it was last updated in 2012, with material that stops abruptly at 2008.  Very low frequency n-grams (found in fewer than 40 sources) were excluded, to make the size of the database manageable.  Christopher Daly  Read much more at

phoneme  noun  the smallest unit of speech that can be used to make one word different from another word  The sounds represented by c and b are different phonemes, as in the words cat and bat.
morpheme  noun  a word or a part of a word that has a meaning and that contains no smaller part that has a meaning  The word pins contains two morphemes:  pin and the plural suffix -s.”

April 18, 2016  Google Inc. can proceed with efforts to create a searchable library of the world’s books after the U.S. Supreme Court turned away an appeal from authors who said their copyrights were being violated.  The justices, without explanation, left intact a federal appeals court decision that said disputed aspects of the digital-library project are “fair use” of the copyrighted works.  Google has scanned more than 20 million mostly nonfiction books.  The Alphabet Inc. unit says its goal is to provide a virtual card catalog of books in all languages, letting people search and find excerpts so they can decide whether to acquire the full volume.  Google started the program in 2004, partnering with university libraries to copy and digitize their collections. In exchange, the universities received digital copies of their books.  The case is Authors Guild v. Google, 15-849.  Greg Stohr

When a recipe calls for sliced onions, you have a choice of how to slice them—lengthwise or crosswise.  If you are cooking the onions, as for caramelizing them, slice them lengthwise, or from root to stem.  That way they will hold their shape better during the cooking.  Crosswise cut onions tend to fall apart when cooked.  When you are adding raw onions to a salad, slice them crosswise.  They’ll be easier to eat, and they look pretty too!

Feedback to ROSS and AI:  The Next Step in Legal Tech?; Can AI tools like ROSS' legal research platform revolutionize law for practitioners and consumers?  Seriously, this reminds me of a "Star Trek" episode where a species of humanoids built such "smart" machines, that eventually the species was annihilated by their own technological creations.  While it's true that entire occupations have "gone extinct," I don't think lawyers (or librarians) will meet the same fate as our friends from the "Star Trek" universe. 

The 2016 Pulitzer Prize winners were announced at 3p.m. ET on April 18th.  Winning stories, photographs and cartoons, along with bios and photos of all the winners are at  Issue 1458  April 20, 2016  On this date in 1535, the sun dog phenomenon was observed over Stockholm and depicted in the famous painting VädersolstavlanOn this date in 1916, the Chicago Cubs played their first game at Weeghman Park (currently Wrigley Field), defeating the Cincinnati Reds 7–6 in 11 innings.