Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Who wants to be the Pittsburgh voice for this open source utility?



---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Jen Caltrider, Mozilla <Mozilla@e.mozilla.org>
Date: Tuesday, July 25, 2017
Subject: I'm sorry, could you repeat that?


A whole new way your voice matters.
Mozilla
 
Dear Pittsburgh Yinzers,
 
We all sound different when we speak. What does that mean for voice recognition? When Siri hears a beautiful Irish brogue or Scottish burr or the accent of a non-native English speaker, she can get tripped up. And Siri has the full force of Apple's voice data collection operation behind her algorithm to help her understand.
 
What about the small developer who wants to build a voice activated app? Where do they go to get samples of all the beautiful voices speaking from around the world?
 
Lost in translation?
Up until recently, their options were to spend a fortune buying data to train their algorithms from big corporations or put their product out into the world with an untrained algorithm. It's time for a better option.
 
Meet Mozilla's new project, Common Voice. It's an open collection of labelled voice data anyone can use to create highly accurate voice recognition software. Well, it will soon be that, with your help. In order to create this valuable public resource, we need people who speak English in all sorts of wonderful ways to go and contribute voice samples. (Note: right now Common Voice is only collecting English samples, but stay tuned, we plan to add other languages very soon.)
 
Here's what you do — click over to the Common Voice website.
 
There are two ways you can help. You can click "Speak" and follow the instructions to leave some of your own voice samples. You'll be asked to allow the website to access your microphone. Don't worry, we're Mozilla, we care about your privacy and won't use your microphone for anything but recording the short sentences you'll read. Have fun playing around with that. I know I did.
 
If leaving a voice recording isn't your thing, you can also just listen. Click the "Listen" link and you'll be asked to listen to some sentences others have read and verify they got it right. That's it. It's actually a ton of fun.
 
As voice recognition becomes more important in our digital world, everyone — from startups to students at university to that friend of yours who just likes to tinker — should be able to make sure their apps recognize all our beautiful voices. That's how we build a healthy Internet, one step at a time.
 
Thank you,

Jen Caltrider
Mozilla
 
 
 


Thanks for reading!
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--
--
Ta.


Mark Rauterkus       Mark.Rauterkus@gmail.com
Swimming and Water Polo Coach, Schenley High School, Pittsburgh, PA
http://CLOH.wikia.com
412 298 3432 = cell

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Fwd: Please share out..Educational Outcomes-Are our children thriving in our schools?

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: <RFlanag@aol.com>
Date: Jul 23, 2017 8:39 PM
Subject: Please share out..Educational Outcomes-Are our children thriving in our schools?
To: <rflanag@aol.com>
Cc:

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Fwd: Time to grab your wallets



---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: John Hemington

Watch out for the movement to end cash, it could prove to be very painful – and the absolute end of non-hermit privacy.

John

Link

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

SKWIM System On the Road

Hi,

This Saturday and Sunday, I will be taking a SKWIM LAGOON to the area not so far from THE ROCK, as we will organize some SKWIM ULTRA for fun at North Shore of MORAINE STATE PARK as part of the fun that swirls around the triathlons, Mighty Moraine, organized by an aquatic friend, Joella of Get Fit Families. We will be there from 9-11 both days. This is our first open water SKWIM in western PA. 

Coach Mark


--
--
Ta.
 
 
Mark Rauterkus       Mark@Rauterkus.com
PPS Summer Dreamers' Swim & Water Polo Camp Executive Coach
Varsity Boys Swim Coach, Pittsburgh Obama Academy
Recent Head Water Polo Coach, Carnegie Mellon University Women's Club Team
Pittsburgh Combined Water Polo Team

http://CLOH.org

412 298 3432 = cell

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Allowing city workers to COACH -- and this CCAC amendment with today's vote

Hi Council Members,

The amendment to the change in the city charter that needs to head to the voters to allow city workers to also be employed by CCAC, another government entity, should be its own ballot question and not put into the measure to allow PPS SCHOOL COACHES.

Teaching at CCAC should be treated as a different exception. That different exception should be considered as its own question on the ballot for the voters.

And, is this "TEACHING at CCAC" or is it also other jobs? What about being a CCAC administrator? What of being a sports coach, or on the grounds crew, working in food service, the book store, or security, or in some other capacity?

I do not think that the spirit of the measure as it was originally put forth applies to the amendment to also allow CCAC employment. A parent is not going to desire to teach at CCAC because his or her son or daughter is enrolled at CCAC. 

If Rev Burgess wants a pay check for teaching at CCAC, that exception can be put on the ballot as a question to stand on its own. I expect that might pass too.

My other suggestion is to make the amendment to that allows paid work at CCAC -- and perhaps the entire exception that would also allow for coaching at PPS  -- be subject to a $10,000 per year limit. 

We do NOT want CCAC teachers with larger teaching loads to be able to work for the city and CCAC at the same time.

If people want to work a second job in higher education, work at the Pgh Seminary, Carlow, Chatham, RMU, Pitt, CMU, DU. 

What about PSU branch campus exception too? One could not work for the 4-H Extension, a branch of PSU in the Tech building in Connelley building. That's fine. Or, allow it to be limited to $10,000. 

In an ideal world with our democratic process, put the CCAC question as its own ballot question, different from the matter of allowing PPS Coaching. 





--
Ta.
 
 
Mark Rauterkus       Mark@Rauterkus.com
PPS Summer Dreamers' Swim & Water Polo Camp Executive Coach
Varsity Boys Swim Coach, Pittsburgh Obama Academy
Recent Head Water Polo Coach, Carnegie Mellon University Women's Club Team
Pittsburgh Combined Water Polo Team

http://CLOH.org

412 298 3432 = cell

Friday, July 14, 2017

Prudent challenges



--
--
Ta.
 
 
Mark Rauterkus       Mark@Rauterkus.com
PPS Summer Dreamers' Swim & Water Polo Camp Executive Coach
Varsity Boys Swim Coach, Pittsburgh Obama Academy
Recent Head Water Polo Coach, Carnegie Mellon University Women's Club Team
Pittsburgh Combined Water Polo Team

http://CLOH.org

412 298 3432 = cell

Sunday, July 09, 2017

Fwd: The Neoliberal Agenda

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: John Hemington <jehemington@verizon.net>


The three attachments are in some ways related as evidencing the results of the neoliberal plutocracy.  In the first, Paul Street details what I have been arguing from the beginning about the Trump election.  That is, that the primary support for Trump did not come from working and lower class whites.  Instead, his strongest support came from what I describe as country club/chamber of commerce whites who are generally well off and represent one of the most reactionary forces in our society.  They tend to care about only two issues, lower (or no) taxes and the elimination of 'unnecessary' regulations.  This is a quasi-libertarian group which tends to care only for their own selfish interests – a core constituency of the neoliberal thought collective.  They strongly believe that they have no responsibility at all for the ills of society nor any interest helping others.  Strangely enough, many, if not most are or believe themselves to be committed Christians – though they seem to have a strange interpretation of Christ's teaching.  The second article deals with plutocracy, its consequences and how both major political parties have come to represent its interests.  The third article discusses the impact of neoliberal agenda on higher education caprification of university teaching positions along with labor's efforts to organize adjuncts and graduate assistants in order to afford a reasonable living opportunity.

One thing that has been quite clear to me is that many of the so called working class whites who voted for Trump were not so much voting for Trump as against the plutocracy which controls both major parties.  It is also clear to me that had the Democratic Party not deliberately sabotaged Bernie Sanders campaign, Sanders would have soundly beaten Trump in at least two of the contested Rust Belt states and won the election.  The shame is that the Democratic Party cares more about pleasing its billionaire contributors than it does about doing what needs to be done for the people and for society as a whole.  This is not the same as saying that Bernie Sanders was the best possible candidate or that all of his policies would have been beneficial.  He was much too willing to follow the military in its effort to subdue the world for corporate interests, but his economic policies would have benefitted many millions of Americans – and most Americans understood that, particularly on the issue of health care for all.


John

Links


Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Fwd: Threats abound


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: John Hemington 


These days it seems as if threats of various enormity abound almost everywhere.  Cable news seems never to stop selling fear and loathing – regardless of which political agenda is being cast as the evil one.  But there is one very real threat that few media of any stripe are reporting and it may be, in many respects, the most serious of all.  That is the accumulation derivatives by the four major Wall Street mega-banks as detailed in the attached article by Pam and Russ Martens of Wall Street on Parade.  One bank, Citi, holds derivatives with a notional value of $54.8 trillion dollars.  To get an idea of just how problematic this is, the global GDP of all nations is estimated to be only $75.6 trillion in notional value.  As stated in the article, there is no way that there could ever be sufficient counter-parties to cover this in the event of another financial crash.  More importantly, little or nothing has been done since the Great Financial Crisis of 2008 (GFC) to correct the problems in the financial industry which led to the 2008 crash.  Dodd-Frank when passed was too little, too late and it has since then diluted and de-toothed at the behest of these financial titans.  When the next crash comes, and it almost certainly will, since the same basic players remain in charge both in and out of government, it is likely to be far more devastating and destructive than the one which preceded it.

If there was not a sufficient threat from nuclear war given the insane policies put in place by the Trump administration, not to mention the two previous administrations, cataclysmic financial crises almost always lead to global warfare.  We got lucky in 2008 because the financial bleeding was stopped, but the non-financial victims were never made whole as were the bankers who got to keep all of their ill-gotten gains as well as all of their power to continue operating multi-trillion dollar gambling operations – which is what derivatives really are.  Unfortunately, the main stream media will almost never pay attention to the criminals in high places and instead focus on crime in the streets.  As a result, it is likely that, as before, the crisis will almost certainly find most Americans unprepared (though it is certainly difficult for one to know how to prepare for such a collapse).   Because the victims of the 2008 GFC have never been made whole and have since been ignored and/or denigrated by both major political parties, we have the rise of right-wing nationalism and the election of a very dangerous president with little capacity for restraint or for rational decision making.  As such these are extremely volatile times in which almost any event can lead to catastrophic consequences for us all. 


John

Link:


Tuesday, July 04, 2017

Fwd: Tyranny's little helpers


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Ben Settle <ben@bensettle.com>


I've said it before I'll say it again:

The best overall business/marketing book I possess (and have been reading almost non-stop since January 2008) is Ken McCarthy's "System Club Letters" book. I dig it so much I even gifted it to my "Email Players" subscribers a few years ago.

My favorite chapter is about Independence Day.

(That's today in the US.)

Ken 'splains why it's lost its meaning:

"Reason #1: Independence is no longer a treasured virtue in our country. Reason #2: Many of the things that the Founding Fathers found so objectionable - like taxation without representation for example - have become institutionalized in the US. Big business, big media, big government - the country seems to be run for their benefit today, not ours."

True.

People are completely gullible.

(Just look at how people follow corrupt politicians like rats following the Pied Piper...)

Another great insight from that chapter:

Ken notes how when this country was founded 90% of people worked (and thought) for themselves.

Today?

Only 10% do.

The rest are slaving away, swallowing everything the media tells them ("Russians!"), voting their rights away for fear of non-existent boogymen, enthusiastically cheering on unelected activist judges making laws out of thin air and based on their feelz, piling on debt, race baiting, class warfaring, never questioning, always obeying — tyranny's little helpers.

Ken's solution?

Become economically independent.

And then use your economic independence to take a stand against the politicians and unelected bankers, bureaucrats, judges, and foreign interests trying to steal yours and your children's birthrights for their 30 pieces of silver.

Anyway, I highly recommend reading it.

And then *keep* reading it.

Perpetually.

As far as how to become economically independent...

I've got a pile of low cost eBooks (most under $3) on Kindle that can help you with everything from copywriting and email… to affiliate marketing and traffic… to positioning, publishing newsletters, selling & persuasion, and how to build a swipe file… and everything in between (including my Villains persuasion book and even a series of novels about zombies and vampires and other deranged monsters that go bump in the morning if'n that's your thang…).

It's like an Independence Day fireworks display of value.

And, it's dirt cheap.

Get your bargain-basement lovin' here:

http://www.BenSettle.com/kindle

Ben Settle





Copyrighted & published by Settle, LLC.

If you are even thinking about swiping or stealing this
email, read this letter from my attorney first:

http://www.BenSettle.com/blog/swipe-file

Ben Settle
World leader in email copywriting education
Settle, LLC


PO Box 2058
Bandon OR 97411
USA

Monday, July 03, 2017

Time to visit -- especially at the public pools

Hi All,

Summer in the city! Hope you and yours are safe and healthy.

Last week highlights: 20 adults joined together to play water polo at
Citiparks Ammon outdoor swim pool in The Hill District. We're looking to
add youth and rookie games in the shallow-water in the weeks to come.

Next practice: 6 pm to 7:45 on Thursday, July 6 at Ammon, Bedford Ave &
Memory Lane.

Then again on Tuesdays, again on Tuesday, July 11. All are invited.

+ +

Lots of action is happening and being documented with some fun photos at
Swim & Water Polo with Pittsburgh Public Schools Summer Dreamers. Follow
along at http://CLOH.org.

+ +

Your help is desired in building political for the inclusion of AQUATICS
within the new Community Schools venture taking root in PPS this coming
school year

http://cloh.org/wp/archives/1090

+ +

Our Independence Day open house is slated for the evening of July 4th,
again, of course. Both of our boys are home this summer -- and both have
appartments in other cities. Come for a visit and watch fireworks from the
deck.

+ +

Fingers are crossed for the still pending opening of the outdoor pool on
the Northside at The Pittsburgh Project. We have dreams of playing lots of
SKWIM there this summer. SKWIM is a great inter-generational game and we
want to build our base of participation throughout the city and the nation.

Hope to see you soon, so we can talk about the endless list of benefits in
this quest in "playing well with others."


--
Ta.


Mark Rauterkus       Mark at Rauterkus.com
PPS Summer Dreamers' Swim & Water Polo Camp Executive Coach
Varsity Boys Swim Coach, Pittsburgh Obama Academy
Recent Head Water Polo Coach, Carnegie Mellon University Women's Club Team
Pittsburgh Combined Water Polo Team

http://CLOH.org

412 298 3432 = cell