Nintendo leads games industry figureheads’ 2017 highlights

first_imgNintendo leads games industry figureheads’ 2017 highlightsAlso, Red Dead Redemption 2 (and various sporting victories) on execs’ 2018 Most Anticipated listJames BatchelorEditor-in-ChiefTuesday 19th December 2017Share this article Recommend Tweet ShareWith the year drawing to a close, we asked some of the most respected people in the video games business for their personal favourites of 2017.Perhaps unsurprisingly, several praised Nintendo’s new Switch console and its flagship launch title – the seminal Zelda: Breath of the Wild. But there were plenty of other high points for execs and developers to choose from, both industry-related and on a more personal basis.We also asked what these experts are most looking forward to in 2018, with Red Dead Redemption 2 a popular choice. Read to find out what else these figureheads are gearing up for:Yosuke Saito, producer, Square Enix2017 was certainly up there as one of the busiest years of my life as a game producer, starting with the release of NieR: Automata, then on to Dragon Quest XI and the PS4 and Switch versions of Dragon Quest X and its expansion pack. Even so, it was really nice to be able to deliver great results for each of them.To be honest, I’m really jealous of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, that is about to sweep the board at GOTY and all the other awards events. But hey-ho, I got to see how there are so many fans all around the world who love our games, so it truly was a happy year for me. Many, many thanks to all the fans!Looking ahead, I hope my work becomes slightly less busy and I can achieve a better balance with my private life. Having said that, I’m really not the type who enjoys having nothing to do, so I hope I will have a chance to bring you news on a new title in 2018. Stay tuned, but don’t get too excited ok!John Riccitiello, CEO, Unity2017 was all about the release of Google’s ARCore and Apple’s ARKit. These technologies are making mobile phones AR-ready — a move that will completely change how we experience the world around us.I’m looking forward to watching how industries outside of gaming will start adopting real-time 3D (RT3D) development. RT3D is something that’s easy to take for granted in the games industry – we’ve been working in this tech for two decades and it’s fundamentally changed how games are developed and how they work. I’m looking forward to seeing how all industries – from architecture and medical to automotive and space exploration – use RT3D technology to create dynamic content for their customers and the market.John Romero, co-founder and president, Romero GamesMy highlight of 2017 was Breath of the Wild – what an incredible experience! The feeling of absolute freedom in BotW is beyond any other game I’ve seen, and the design of the world is so well done. I’m very happy to see my belief in Nintendo, and great game design, is once again proven to be a huge success.I’m most looking forward to playing more games in 2018, and hopefully diving into World of Warcraft’s expansion, Battle for Azeroth, and getting to level 120.Brenda Romero, co-founder and design director, Romero GamesMy gameplay highlight of 2017 was absolutely What Remains of Edith Finch. What an incredible masterwork of game design. I was overwhelmed and just humbled as a designer by what that team created. They set a new bar.I know this sounds kind of crazy, but I am most looking forward to a big milestone we have in the new year. This is the most talented team I’ve ever worked with.Warwick Light, VP & MD for UK and Australasia, Sony Interactive Entertainment EuropeWe sponsor the nationwide Digital Schoolhouse programme, which enables secondary schools to deliver creative computing workshops to visiting primary school pupils. This year the programme held an esports tournament; 400 schoolchildren participated in the tournament through Rocket League on PlayStation 4. The tournament demonstrated the power of games and competitive play in building confidence, team work, communication skills and perseverance.The results were remarkable with 87% of participating pupils reporting a greater interest in studying computing and tech-related qualifications, and 75% of students reporting significantly increased interest in a career in the burgeoning video games industry.In 2018, I’m really looking forward to England playing the All Blacks for the first time in four years at Twickenham in November. I’m a kiwi with a British passport, so it’s a win-win for me.Harvey Eagle, Xbox UK category director, MicrosoftWell on a personal note I was lucky enough to take a sabbatical from Microsoft over the summer months. With my wife and our whippet, we took a driving holiday around Spain and ate some truly amazing food and drank some fab wine. A food highlight was catching tuna season in a restaurant called El Campero in Barbate, a small fishing town near Cadiz. And if you like bold fruity red wines I highly recommend Tomas Postigo’s Ribera del Duero. I know I shouldn’t be biased, but I have to say that the launch of Xbox One X has been a career highlight. We’re very fortunate that with us, Sony and Nintendo all having popular new devices our console industry is in rude health. And finally I want to win a chicken dinner before the year is out.Strauss Zelnick, CEO, Take-TwoMy highlight of 2017 was our launch of NBA 2K18, which is poised to become our most successful sports title ever, as well as the continued success of Grand Theft Auto V and Grand Theft Auto Online more than four years after their initial release. In addition, the launch of new gaming platforms has been exciting to watch and good for our industry.Thankfully, I have several things that I’m very much looking forward to in 2018, including Rockstar Games’ launch of Red Dead Redemption 2 and our expansion into esports with the debut of the NBA 2K League.Liz Mercuri, education evangelist, UnityHonestly, my highlight of 2017 (where playing games is concerned) is how FFXV has renewed my obsession with the Final Fantasy franchise. No other FF in the series has hit me in the feels like VIII did until XV came along. (I know FFXV was released in 2016, but the ongoing release schedule for it has kept my obsession alive. I am loving the character episode DLC).The announcement of the new BAFTA Awards category – Game Beyond Entertainment – was a major highlight for me. I absolutely love that jobs in the game industry are now being recognized as viable career options and I adore that games are being seen for the mature, emotionally engaging and emotive medium that they always have been. This new category is testament to this fantastic change in public perception.Ian Livingstone, non-executive chairman, Sumo Digital/FlavourWorksAsking me to highlight just one thing is a bit like asking me to talk about my favourite child when I’ve got four! So, keeping it in the family, it was great to see Sumo Digital develop and publish their own IP, Snake Pass, see Playdemic’s Golf Clash become a huge global hit on mobile, read the announcement by Sony Interactive Entertainment Europe about publishing Flavourwork’s Erica, and see my new Fighting Fantasy gamebook, The Port of Peril, on the shelves at WH Smith!In 2018 I’m most looking forward to Manchester City playing in the Champions League Final (and hopefully winning)!Grant Kirkhope, composer (Mario + Rabbids, Yooka-Laylee)The highlight of 2017 was undoubtedly seeing Davide Soliani burst into tears when Shigeru Miyamoto said his name at the E3 Ubisoft press conference. I was sitting two seats across from Davide and it was such a heartfelt moment.The moment I’m most looking forward to in 2018 is when I get to write the music for the next Harry Potter related movie… I can dream right!Tim Heaton, studio director, Creative Assembly2017 was a great year for CA. My personal highlights were seeing our new Sofia studio release their first Total War title, celebrating our UK studio’s 30th anniversary with our very own music festival and, of course, winning a GamesIndustry.biz Best Place to Work Award.Darren Mills, co-founder and studio director, Sumo DigitalFrom a Sumo point of view, the launch and success of Snake Pass (our first original IP) was a big deal that was a lot of fun. It coincided perfectly with the launch of the Nintendo Switch, which is a great console and shows Nintendo yet again shining a new light on areas of our industry that we probably take for granted. Zelda was amazing. On a personal note, I got the chance to cross off a bucket list item by attending the Abu Dhabi F1 GP – a fantastic experience!2018 will hopefully see the British Games Institute’s plans coming to fruition, which will be great news for all of us. The Han Solo movie will be pretty cool, too!Keza MacDonald, Games Editor, The GuardianHighlight of 2017: The Nintendo Switch. The release of the first proper handheld-home-console-hybrid just happened to coincide with my becoming a parent and the evaporation of my couch-gaming time, so playing Zelda: Breath of the Wild in stolen moments during naptime was a joy.Most looking forward to in 2018: My great ambition for the coming year is to finally complete Persona 5.Gavin Raeburn, CEO, Playground GamesHighlight has been opening a second studio to build our new action RPG game, but a close second has been powering up my new Xbox One X and OLED TV – beast meets beast! Next year, I’m looking forward to My 50th birthday and Newcastle United winning the Premier League. Come on Rafa!Shahid Ahmad, director, Ultimatum GamesMy highlight of 2017 was the Nintendo Switch and in particular, Super Mario Odyssey, which is one of the greatest video games of all time, so full of joy and delights.I’m most looking forward to Dreams by Media Molecule in 2018. I suspect we will all run out of superlatives when people have spent some time with it. It’s likely to be one of the most profound achievements in the history of the industry.Stuart Turner, COO, CapcomThere are two highlights for me. The first was watching the UK media, first parties and the great and the good of the industry collectively shit themselves when doing the real-life Resident Evil House in Shoreditch in January. Capcom has footage of a senior figure at SIEE diving into a laundry basket in a blind panic to hide from Jack Baker entering the room.So that, plus catching and finally getting a Farfetched in Pokémon Go.Debbie Bestwick, CEO, Team 17I would say the highlight of 2017 has been the immense success of the Nintendo Switch. To hear just a few days ago that it has hit 10 million sales is a phenomenal achievement. It’s been fantastic to see Nintendo be so supportive of the indie dev scene and it’s great to see some of our label games sat in the charts next to big AAA first and third-party titles!”It’s been fantastic to see Nintendo be so supportive of the indie dev scene and see our games sat in the charts next to big AAA titles” Debbie Bestwick, Team17In 2018 I’m looking forward to finally putting my feet up and having a relaxing quiet year handling more than half a dozen new gaming IP releases. In all seriousness, next year will see my 100th game release; it’s a big year for myself and all at Team17.Imre Jele, creator-in-chief, Bossa StudiosOne could argue that a game about fighting robot dinosaurs is a surefire hit. Yet I have to admit I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect from Horizon Zero Dawn. But it went way, way above my expectations. Guerrilla managed to break into the crowded open world scene with a very competent new IP which has something most other games in the genre miss; a heart. Similarly, Hidden Folks is overflowing with personality and frankly, it just made me click and click and click for hours, much longer than I’d care to admit publicly. I did a vote within Bossa and the results are in: The team enjoyed Zelda most this year but we have a lot of Nintendo fans here so it’s a biased team. We are most excited for Red Dead 2 in 2018 because it has a rare type of universe – well recognised, yet not overused in games.Gavin Price, studio and game director, Playtonic Games2017 highlight has to be Playtonic receiving a VAT inspection. Trying to explain away our business model thus far to a VAT inspector… our crowdfunding campaign and then receiving royalties via a publisher as the reason for a very unpredictable set of reports over the last two years etc. turned me in to a quivering Alan Partridge style version of myself. Didn’t pass wind during the interview though.Also, chatting more with Team 17’s Debbie Bestwick. Her personal take on industry goings on via our private conversations are brilliant. When she takes over the world I’ll have some great material to bribe her with or live in fear of my life for knowing…Garry Williams, owner, Sold OutA highlight of 2017 was Mario Odyssey, realising I could afford to buy a whole system just for one game I was straight “in.” Knowing it could never be as good as the old versions I grew up on, I was proved wrong. Welcome back Mario my old friend!Richard Wilson, CEO, TIGAThe highlight for me was the excellent news that Video Games Tax Relief will be extended until April 2023. This measure is driving growth across our industry, encouraging more start-ups, more investment and more job creation. It’s great to know that Video Games Tax Relief is secure until at least 2023.Caspar Field, CEO, Wish StudiosIt’s bloody hard not to talk about Wish when we released two PlayLink games for Sony this year, but I’ll try. On a personal note, I’ve had some lovely game playing experiences with my kids this year, with my son in Overcooked and various Lego titles, and with my daughter in Yoshi’s Woolly World. Lots of happy memories of both, and a reminder of the simple joy that well-crafted video games can bring, in discovering surprising new worlds and playing delightful mechanics. Seeing those things afresh, through my children’s eyes, has been a marvellous experience.For 2018, the teenager in me cannot wait to play the new Spider-Man game from Insomniac! Looks totally incredible. And, as someone who’s affected by SAD, I also cannot wait for spring, as it’s usually a long, dark, cold run from January to April. Maybe I should hibernate. Or migrate. One of the two…Colin Macdonald, company head, All 4 GamesA highlight has been seeing the community forcing Disney to force EA to backtrack on exploitative business models. Like them or not, microtransactions are clearly here to stay but great to see that incumbents can still be taught not to take their paying audience for granted.And in 2018 I’m most looking forward to seeing whether our Switches are still in regular use after we’ve exhausted Zelda and Mario, and the appeal of the unique hardware format wears off.Personally I think I suspect i’ll still be hunting down more spirit orbs even come Christmas 2018!Dave Ranyard, CEO, Dream Reality InteractiveI have two highlights. One is the Oculus Go launch – a solid VR platform at a consumer price (around the same as a DS used to be). With the announcement of Sony’s VR headset sales and the launch of a mainstream affordable headset from Oculus I think that 2018 will be the year of solid platform growth for VR and by the end of the year we will see VR as a credible commercial platform.Secondly, getting the building work on my house finished and moving from the sofa back to a REAL bed.Simon Hade, co-founder and COO, Space Ape GamesWe launched Fastlane: Road to Revenge this summer which had amazing coverage within the YouTube community and in the same week we also announced that we were joining forces with Supercell. That week was obviously the highlight of 2017 for me personally.”It was great to see optimism return to mobile gaming in a big way. The market is now rewarding people who are bringing something fresh to the platform” Simon Hade, Space ApeMore broadly it was great to see optimism return to mobile gaming in a big way. Through 2015 and 2016 it felt that the mobile charts were all locked up by a small handful of formats, if not games. However, in 2017 this all changed. There are quite a few games at the top of the grossing charts that either didn’t exist or were not on anyone’s radar. There is a lot more investment activity, tons of M&A, and it feels like the market is now rewarding people who are bringing something fresh and interesting to the platform. This is great for gamers and an exciting time to be a developer committed to trying new things. 2018 could belong to anybody.Phil Mansell, CEO, JagexIt’s been something of a world tour for me this year, but GDC was a highlight and I’m already excited for 2018’s conference. With every year, the GDC matures, delivers more inspirational and informative talks, and provides perhaps the best games dev networking of any of the Western conferences. It’s a landmark event in the industry calendar.Related JobsSenior Game Designer – UE4 – AAA United Kingdom Amiqus GamesProgrammer – REMOTE – work with industry veterans! North West Amiqus GamesJunior Video Editor – GLOBAL publisher United Kingdom Amiqus GamesDiscover more jobs in games A personal highlight this year was Jagex becoming a member of UKIE and joining the board of directors. I’ve admired UKIE’s work as a trade body in fighting on behalf of the games industry and helping make the UK such a great place to make games.Ignasi Prat, CMO, TappxFirstly, the advent of 4K native games in console gaming is really exciting. Secondly, the fact that mobile games revenues have exceeded those of the console segment this year. This leading position is supported by in-app purchases and ad monetisation models, the latter of which is being rapidly adopted by publishers. Lastly, 2017 has given us new Blade Runner and Star Wars mainline movies. What more could a geek ask for?!Johannes Heinze, MD international, AppLovin2017 was the year that we started seeing hyper-casual games start dominating the app store charts all over the world. Companies like Voodoo and Ketchapp rose to the top with mobile games defined by short gameplay loops and easy to understand objectives. This means hyper-casual games can easily be picked up by anyone, and require minimal localisation, if at all. While 2017 saw hyper-casual emerge as a trend, 2018 will be the year when more developers and studios realise the huge potential these games have.Celebrating employer excellence in the video games industry8th July 2021Submit your company Sign up for The Publishing & Retail newsletter and get the best of GamesIndustry.biz in your inbox. Enter your email addressMore storiesEA leans on Apex Legends and live services in fourth quarterQ4 and full year revenues close to flat and profits take a tumble, but publisher’s bookings still up double-digitsBy Brendan Sinclair 5 hours agoUbisoft posts record sales yet again, delays Skull & Bones yet againPublisher moves away from target of 3-4 premium AAA titles a year, wants to build free-to-play “to be trending toward AAA ambitions over the long term”By Brendan Sinclair 8 hours agoLatest comments Sign in to contributeEmail addressPasswordSign in Need an account? Register now.last_img read more

French games industry hits $5.3bn in 2017

first_imgFrench games industry hits $5.3bn in 2017Software, hardware and accessories sales all improveChristopher DringHead of Games B2BFriday 16th March 2018Share this article Recommend Tweet ShareCompanies in this articlesellThe video games market in France grew 18% last year to €4.3 billion ($5.3 billion).Console hardware, PC hardware and accessories grew 22% over 2016 to €1.69bn, while the software sector reached €2.61 billion, a rise of 16%.€748 million was generated from console sales alone, driven by the new launches of Nintendo Switch and Xbox One X, plus the continued success of the PlayStation family of devices. Console hardware sales rose 31% compared with 2016, which French trade body SELL describes as ‘unprecedented’.The new consoles on the market saw accessory sales reach €272 million, a rise of 23%. Meanwhile, console games grew 20% to €1.35bn. A huge rise in digital sales accounted for most of this, with virtual/digital sales growing 46%. However, the physical market grew, too, with boxed game sales increasing 6%. The physical sector remains the dominant area for console games in France, accounting for 59% of console game sales. Overall, the console games market accounted for 31% of the French games industry, with an overall 23% growth for the entire console ecosystem compared with 2016.It is the biggest growth area, with PC games growing by 6% and handheld gaming (including mobile) up 22%.Related JobsSenior Game Designer – UE4 – AAA United Kingdom Amiqus GamesProgrammer – REMOTE – work with industry veterans! North West Amiqus GamesJunior Video Editor – GLOBAL publisher United Kingdom Amiqus GamesDiscover more jobs in games Looking specifically at PC, this sector is now worth over €1 billion in France (€1.12 billion to be exact). This growth is due to a rise in sales of PC gaming hardware and accessories, which are now worth a combined €637 million (57% of the market). PC gaming hardware grew 10%, while PC gaming accessories improved by 20%.Yet it wasn’t entirely good news for the PC sector. PC game sales were worth €487 million during 2017, a drop of 1% over the year before. This is primarily due to the stability of the digital market and a decline in physical PC game sales (down 14%).This data was compiled by SELL, using ISFE’s new GSD project (which combines physical and digital data for the first time), App Annie’s mobile data and GameTrack’s mobile date.Celebrating employer excellence in the video games industry8th July 2021Submit your company Sign up for The Daily Update and get the best of GamesIndustry.biz in your inbox. Enter your email addressMore storiesEA leans on Apex Legends and live services in fourth quarterQ4 and full year revenues close to flat and profits take a tumble, but publisher’s bookings still up double-digitsBy Brendan Sinclair 4 hours agoEA Play Live set for July 22Formerly E3-adjacent event moves to take place a month and half after the ESA’s showBy Jeffrey Rousseau 6 hours agoLatest comments Sign in to contributeEmail addressPasswordSign in Need an account? Register now.last_img read more

‘CALL 911’: Sign leads to rescue after woman, 3 sons allegedly restrained in car

first_imgNassau County Police Dept.(NEW YORK) — A Long Island woman whose boyfriend locked her and her three sons in a car was freed after she held a “CALL 911” sign on the car window, leading to their rescue, according to authorities.William Jamal Wilkinson, 35, was driving on Long Island, N.Y., Tuesday when he refused to let his girlfriend and her children — a 13-year-old boy and twin 3-year-old boys — out of the car, allegedly holding them with threats of violence, according to court documents.After pulling into a gas station, the woman was able to get a passerby’s attention by pressing a note against the window asking for help, according to court documents.A witness alerted authorities after seeing the woman in the front passenger seat holding a sign that read “Please call 911, CALL 911,” according to Nassau County police.Wilkinson, of Ridge, N.Y., was arrested on charges including unlawful imprisonment, according to police.The children are not Wilkinson’s, according to the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office.A potential motive was not immediately clear.Wilkinson was arraigned on Wednesday and is due to return to court on Friday, according to prosecutors.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

EDUC 385: History, Culture

first_imgLocation: La Verne Central CampusSpecial Instructions:To be considered for this position please visit our web site andapply on line at the following link: http://laverne.eduInstitutional ProfileLocated in Southern California, the University of La Verne offers adistinctive and relevant educational experience to a diversepopulation of students, preparing them for successful careers and acommitment to lifelong learning across the liberal arts andprofessional programs. The academic units of the not-for-profituniversity include the College of Arts and Sciences, the College ofBusiness and Public Management, the LaFetra College of Education,and the College of Law. The university offers both undergraduateand graduate programs, including degree programs tailored forworking adults. The university’s central campus is located 30 mileseast of Los Angeles in the historic Old Town section of La Verne, acity with a population of approximately 35,000 at the foothills ofthe San Gabriel Mountains. The university also has eight regionalcampuses throughout California and the College of Law campus inOntario, California. The university is classified as a CarnegieDoctoral Institution with moderate research activity. Core valuesare reflected throughout all curricular and co-curricular programs,its emphasis on close professor-student interaction, personalsupport of its students, and its diversity.The University of La Verne prides itself in being reflective of thediversity of Southern California. Approximately 80 percent of itsnearly 8,500 students come from diverse backgrounds and the U.S.Department of Education has designated the university as a HispanicServing Institution (HSI). With 80,000 alumni, the universityfulfills a critical community function in educating students fromunderserved populations, many of whom are the first generation intheir family to attend college.The University of La Verne is an equal opportunity employer anddoes not discriminate against employment or employees on any basisprohibited by state and federal law. University of La Verne hiresand promotes individuals based on their qualifications and isconsistent with applicable state and federal laws, without regardto race, color, religion, gender, disability, medical condition aor sexual orientation Minimum Qualifications: Preferred Qualifications: jeid-02fff1532dc07f499ae39c9e330bd818center_img Specific Duties: University of La VerneEDUC 385: History, Culture & Society Job Description Summary:The University of La Verne is a private not-for-profituniversity founded in 1891 located in La Verne, California. Thecore values that we live by are Ethical Reasoning, Diversity andInclusivity, Lifelong Learning and Community and CivicEngagement.If you’re passionate about these values, join us at the Universityof La Verne!The Educational Studies program at the University of La Verneinvites applications for adjunct faculty positions to teach anundergraduate course in the field of Social Studies.Catalog course description: This course will introduce concepts,theories, and perspectives vital in the understanding of history,culture, and society. Corollary to the understanding of society andculture is the ability to identify issues and concerns affectivesociety through history.Must be available to teach at the following campuses:Main CampusOntario Campus (Crafton Hills location)High Desert CampusVentura CampusBurbank Campus (College of the Canyons)Onlinelast_img read more

David Leeder’s MET secures £8.3m

first_imgMetropolitan European Transport (MET), the high-growth European local bus operator run by a team of experienced UK-based transport industry executives, has secured £8.3m from Business Growth Fund (BGF) to fund continued growth in Europe.MET plans to use the funds to acquire bolt-on regional bus operators and support tendering activity.The UK-based management team has significant sector experience and a track record for growing businesses in the sector. Before co-founding MET, CEO David Leeder was a main board director at First Group and CEO of West Midlands Travel. MET’s CFO is Guy Houston, a former UK bus FD for FirstGroup, who has also held senior finance roles at Transport Scotland and Stagecoach UK Bus. The company’s Chairman is Iain Lanaghan, a co-founder of transport group Abellio and the former CFO of First Group plc.  Business Growth Fund (BGF) is a £2.5bn UK-based firm that invests UK-based small and medium enterprises. It was created in 2011 and is owned major UK banks – Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds, RBS and Standard Chartered. BGF exists to support small and medium sized UK growth businesses with financial investment .MET was set up in 2011 with a focus on providing local and regional bus services in Germany, Europe’s largest and most fragmented local bus markets. The business now operates from two regional hubs, based in Frankfurt and Cologne, providing local bus services, special needs transport and school transport for local authorities, government entities and corporate bodies.MET CEO David Leeder explained: “BGF’s significant investment in the business will allow MET to continue our expansion.  We see many opportunities for profitable growth through both the consolidation of small bus businesses, and as more local authorities place transport services to public tender. BGF’s investment will give us the capital to take advantage of these opportunities.” David Gammie from BGF added: “We’ve backed a high calibre team with very credible sector experience. David and his team has already grown the business significantly since founding it in 2011. They have demonstrated their ability to grow through competitive tendering and successfully making bolt-on acquisitions. We look forward to supporting the business on the next stage of its growth story.” The investment was led for BGF by David Gammie, Mike Sibson and  Keith Barclay and for MET by Iain Lanaghan, Guy Houston and David Leeder. MET was advised by Noventus Partners.last_img read more

From Dallas to the palace!

first_imgSpeaking ahead of an event at the city’s Résidence Palace, the 60-year-old actress declared: “Women’s rights are human rights and we should all be very supportive of that.” The Bush administration has withheld $34 million from the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) following allegations that it was aiding forced abortions in China. The agency denies the claims. In March, the EU agreed to boost UNFPA’s work in Asia by €18.5 million over three years.last_img

Phil Lesh, Joe Russo, and Eric Krasno Play Surprise Set at Central Park’s Jazz & Colors

first_imgOn a beautiful, crisp fall day in Central Park, many music fans, and even your casual strollers looking to get a breath of fresh air, were treated to 30 bands in 30 locations spread across the park for the second annual Jazz & Colors. The beauty of Jazz & Colors, besides the fact that it takes place in Central Park, is that 30 different ensembles play the same setlist of jazz standards.Jazz & Colors is a free public designed by film producer and local concert promoter, Peter Shapiro (Brooklyn Bowl/Capitol Theatre.  Shapiro is also in partnership with the City of New York and the Central Park Conservancy.  Shapiro hopes to infuse Central Park with culture and jazz without that “music festival” feel.While revelers were treated to incredible sets from many different artists, there was one set that may have topped them all. Grateful Dead/Furthur bassist Phil Lesh joined Furthur drummer Joe Russo and Soulive/Lettuce guitarist Eric Krasno for an unannounced 30-minute set near Sheep’s Meadow. The group set up with roughly 30 people standing around, and began the set with Lesh calling out a key and the group going into some jazz improv.The trio also performed a cover of The Beatles’ “Get Back,” and finished the set with another improv-based jazz excursion. Considering Lesh’s background as a student of avant-garde classical music and free jazz, along with Krasno and Russo’s accomplished backgrounds, this is most certainly a dream trio that would be interesting to see in a full-show format. There is always hope, right?Take a look at a brief video of the trio in action:[via Jambase][photo and video credit to Scott Bernstein]last_img read more

‘Dome-ish’ to explore on-campus diversity

first_imgIn spite of its fame, Notre Dame’s Golden Dome has yet to be featured in the name of a television program. That changes Wednesday with the premiere of “Dome-ish”, a four-part sketch comedy series reflecting issues of diversity at Notre Dame.The show’s producers — seniors Coty Miller, Chandler Turner and Geralyn Smith — said they hope “Dome-ish” will tell stories about minority groups on campus.“We really want students to kind of understand the positions that minority students have been placed in and hopefully see that and want to either change their views, change how they approach situations,” Miller said. “[We want students] to sympathize more.”The miniseries, which will consist of four 15-minute episodes, was created in collaboration with Multicultural Student Program and Services (MSPS) and NDtv, Miller said. The program aims to counter stereotypes and educate the campus community about diversity in a “comedic way.”“Think of it as the funny ‘Show Some Skin,’” Turner said.Each episode will feature roughly three skits highlighting specific issues, Miller explained. Examples of issues include the experiences of students who come from families with low socioeconomic status, stereotypes surrounding athletes and the daily struggles students of color and the LGBTQ community.“In our promo video, we talked about how a lot of times professors can’t tell the difference between different black students, or even students of color in general,” Miller said.The production process aimed to involve as many students who were interested in getting film production experience as possible, the producers said. Anyone can submit a skit for the producers’ consideration. The show will also include skits written by the producers.Once the producers have decided to use a skit, they reach out to people to help out with production. Both Miller and Turner expressed hope that “Dome-ish” will continue to be produced in future semesters.“In the beginning, before we started writing content and all of that, we reached out to see who was interested in general,” Miller said. “A lot of people got back to us and they just wanted to get involved with production and acting in general, and so based on that interest those are the people we reach out to automatically. More and more people start reaching out the more they hear about it, so we try to include as many people as possible.”The title “Dome-ish” is derived from the ABC sitcom “Black-ish” and its spin-off, “Grown-ish.” The producers said that it is meant to signify the fact that many minority students do not get the full “Notre Dame experience” while they are students at the University.“We kind of played off the whole ‘Black-ish’ and ‘Grown-ish’ ideas where they’re saying they’re ‘black-ish,’ so what people typically expect black people to be like, they’re kind of like that in terms of … cause they’re black and they do have some similarities with the stereotypes and black experiences, but it’s an ‘ish’ kind of thing,” Miller said. “We’re saying these students kind of get that Notre Dame experience being here, they get a lot of the same experiences other students do but there’s a lot of experiences that they’re not able to get and their experiences are different.“So, the typical Notre Dame experience people get and walk with and tell people about, which is a good experience, they’re kind of getting that. They’re unfortunately not able to get that typical Notre Dame experience and that’s where the ‘ish’ comes from.”Turner said one of the key goals of the “Dome-ish” project is to tell the stories of students who are often forgotten or overlooked.“One goal of mine is to add to the Notre Dame narrative,” Turner said. “A lot of times Notre Dame just pushes one type of Notre Dame student or one type of narrative and with this visual representation of a lot of the students that go here that don’t feel represented quite so right. So, we’re giving students the chance to write their own narratives and that’s really important to us.”Tags: Diversity, Dome-ish, MSPS, NDTvlast_img read more

Condos: Remember to vote in the August 14th Primary Election!

first_imgAll 50 states need dedicated funding to ensure the integrity of elections now and into the future. We were successful in March, with the support of Senator Patrick Leahy and others in Congress, in securing $380 million ($3 million for Vermont) in Help America Vote Act funds to be used for election cybersecurity and election infrastructure upgrades in states.(link is external)We work hard to provide accurate voter information on both Facebook(link is external) and Twitter(link is external), so follow us to stay updated. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us either on these accounts or my office. You can find contact information for my office at www.sec.state.vt.us(link is external). To find us on Facebook go towww.facebook.com/SecretaryOfStateJimCondos(link is external), and we’re @VermontSOS on Twitter.Please be sure to vote on August 14th, and on November 6th. Your Vote is Your Voice! See you at the polls! by Secretary of State Jim Condos The August 14th Vermont Primary Election is just two weeks away. While there has been some indication of lower voter turn-out, I hope that as Vermonters, we can make sure that’s not the case in our state.Voting is the foundation of our democracy. When you go to the polls on Primary Day and Election Day, you’re helping shape the future of our towns, our state and our country. Mark your calendars today – August 14 and November 6 – and be sure to vote! Early voting is also a great way to increase voter participation. You can vote early for the August 14th Primary right now, either in-person at your local Town/City Clerk’s Office, or by requesting a ballot be mailed to you. Requests can be made by phone, email, walk-in or online at https://mvp.sec.state.vt.us(link is external). Reminder, your ballot must be returned to your municipal clerk by 7:00pm on Election Day to ensure it’s counted. Don’t wait until the last minute!It is unfortunate that in many parts of the country, there are attempts to enact laws that would make it harder for legitimate voters to register and vote – in essence, to challenge or deny access to certain citizens to vote. That’s not the case in Vermont! As Secretary of State, I’m pleased to report that we’ve done many things in Vermont to ensure access to the ballot box for eligible voters. From same-day voter registration, to automatic voter registration, we’re working hard to eliminate any barriers to voting for Vermonters. We’re also in the process of implementing a new, accessible voting system. This will allow individuals with disabilities to vote privately and independently, both at the polls and from home during the early voting period.The issue of election cyber-security has been in the spotlight since fall 2016 when the news broke that Russian intelligence-service hackers targeted 21 states. Vermont was not one of the states targeted. Fortunately, of the states targeted, twenty successfully defended against the attacks, and our federal partners found no evidence that any votes being altered. Yet, we do know hackers will continue to try to breach and disrupt our voting systems.Cyber-security is a top priority for my office. In Vermont, we have taken many steps to protect our election system against cyber-attacks, including:Paper ballots for every vote cast in VermontRandom audits following the General ElectionDecentralized elections management, where vote tabulators are not connected to the internet, to each other, or to any external device either by Wi-Fi or hardwireDaily backup of our voter registration rollsBlacklisting known problem IP addressesInstallation of a real-time monitor which constantly examines our system and reports on suspicious activityPeriodic penetration testing Weekly Department of Homeland Security cyber-hygiene scansTrainings with municipal clerks, who are the front lines of our election systemImplementation of two-factor authentication for any user who has access to our voter registration and election management systemlast_img read more

CU Grow Garden Reflections: Success in digital requires a farmer’s mentality

first_img 1SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr by. James Robert LayIt has been a busy April for all of us here at CU Grow.It began with us attending the Financial Brand Forum as the official media sponsor. The event kicked off with a video that we produced; we now invite you to use it to help spark conversation within your credit union or bank.I also had the opportunity to speak at two different events and share our latest digital marketing and lead generation insight with financial executives.A couple of recurring discussions have emerged from my travels over the past two weeks, one being:“We know we need to evolve and prepare for the humanized digital economy but how do we convince our board of directors or get all our executive team onboard?”I took the past week to reflect on these ideas as I worked in the CU Grow Garden. And it’s through this little side project that it became clear that we can learn from nature even in a humanized digital economy. continue reading »last_img read more