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Elliott Smith

Steven Paul "Elliott" Smith was an American singer and multi-instrumentalist. Smith was born in Omaha, raised in Texas, lived much of his life in Portland, where he first gained popularity. Smith's primary instrument was the guitar, though he used piano, bass guitar and harmonica. Smith had a distinctive vocal style, characterized by his "whispery, spiderweb-thin delivery", used multi-tracking to create vocal layers and harmonies. After playing in the rock band Heatmiser for several years, Smith began his solo career in 1994, with releases on the independent record labels Cavity Search and Kill Rock Stars. In 1997, he signed a contract with DreamWorks Records. Smith rose to mainstream prominence when his song "Miss Misery"—included in the soundtrack for the film Good Will Hunting —was nominated for an Oscar in the Best Original Song category in 1998. Smith was a drinker and drug user, was diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and major depressive disorder, his struggles with drugs and mental illness affected his life and work, appeared in his lyrics.

In 2003, aged 34, he died in Los Angeles, from two stab wounds to the chest. The autopsy evidence was inconclusive as to whether the wounds were self-inflicted or the result of homicide. At the time of his death, Smith was working on his sixth studio album, From a Basement on the Hill, posthumously completed and released in 2004. Steven Paul Smith was born at the Clarkson Hospital in Omaha, the only child of Gary Smith, a student at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, Bunny Kay Berryman, an elementary school music teacher, his parents divorced when he was six months old, Smith moved with his mother to Duncanville, Texas. Smith had a tattoo of a map of Texas drawn on his upper arm and said: "I didn't get it because I like Texas, kind of the opposite, but I won't forget about it, although I'm tempted to because I don't like it there."Smith endured a difficult childhood and a troubled relationship with his stepfather Charlie Welch. Smith stated he may have been sexually abused by Welch at a young age, an allegation which Welch has denied.

He wrote about this part of his life in "Some Song". The name "Charlie" appears in songs "Flowers for Charlie" and "No Confidence Man." In a 2004 interview, Jennifer Chiba, Smith's partner at the time of his death, said that Smith's difficult childhood was why he needed to sedate himself with drugs as an adult: "He was remembering traumatic things from his childhood – parts of things. It's not my place to say what."For much of his childhood, Smith's family was a part of the Community of Christ but began attending services at a local Methodist Church. Smith felt that going to church did little for him, except make him "really scared of Hell". In 2001, he said: "I don't buy into any structured version of spirituality, but I have my own version of it."Smith began playing piano at age nine, at ten began learning guitar on a small acoustic guitar bought for him by his father. At this age he composed an original piano piece, "Fantasy", which won him a prize at an arts festival. Many of the people on his mother's side of the family were non-professional musicians.

At fourteen, Smith left his mother's home in Texas and moved to Portland, Oregon, to live with his father, working as a psychiatrist. It was around this time, he began experimenting with recording for the first time after borrowing a four-track recorder. At high school, Smith played guitar and piano, he graduated from Lincoln High School as a National Merit Scholar. After graduation, Smith began calling himself "Elliott", saying that he thought "Steve" sounded too much like a "jock" name, that "Steven" sounded "too bookish". According to friends, he had used the pseudonym "Elliott Stillwater-Rotter" during his time in the band A Murder of Crows. Biographer S. R. Shutt speculates that the name was either inspired by Elliott Avenue, a street that Smith had lived on in Portland, or that it was suggested by his then-girlfriend. A junior high acquaintance of Smith speculates Smith changed his name so as not to be confused with Steve Smith, the drummer of Journey. Smith graduated from Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts, in 1991 with a degree in philosophy and political science.

"Went straight through in four years", he explained to Under the Radar in 2003. "I guess it proved to myself that I could do something I didn't want to for four years. Except I did like what I was studying. At the time it seemed like,'This is your one and only chance to go to college and you had just better do it because some day you might wish that you did.' Plus, the whole reason I applied in the first place was because of my girlfriend, I had gotten accepted even though we had broken up before the first day." After he graduated, he "worked in a bakery back in Portland with a bachelor's degree in philosophy and legal theory". While at Hampshire, Smith formed the band Heatmiser with classmate Neil Gust. After Smith graduated from Hampshire, the band added drummer Tony Lash and bassist Brandt Peterson and began performing around Portland in 1992; the group released the albums Dead Air and Cop and Speeder as well as the Yellow No. 5 EP on Frontier Records. They were signed to Virgin Records to release what became their

Sidney Job Pocock

Sir Sidney Job Pocock Kt, was a British businessman, writer, Liberal Party politician and an authority on prisons. Pocock was born Lydia née Keevil of Stanford Park, Berkshire. In 1890 he married Annie Cousens, they had three daughters. In 1915 he married Kate Ethel Lankester. Pocock was knighted in 1912. On 28 April 1931 he died at Surbiton Hall, Kingston upon Thames, at the age of 76, his probate was resworn the next year at £20,034. His columnar gravestone at Wimbledon is surmounted by a cornice and large shrouded amphora. Pocock inherited an interest in farming, he made his career as a businessman. He was prominent in the dairy industry. In 1907 he was appointed a Justice of the Peace for Middlesex and presided over the Spelthorne Petty Sessions, his experiences as a Magistrate led him to take a particular interest in the prison system. He visited many prisons, recording his observations and experiences which he had published in 1930, under the title'The Prisoner and the Prison'. Pocock was a member of the Eighty Club, a political London gentlemen's club which had a strong association with the Liberal Party.

He was Liberal candidate for the Uxbridge division of Middlesex at the 1906 General Election. Uxbridge was a safe Conservative seat, so much so that no Liberal candidate contested the previous general elections in 1895 and 1900; the Liberals swept to power nationally and the tide nearly took Pocock into parliament. He lost by just 145 votes. Four years at the January 1910 General Election, he once again contested Uxbridge but this time the Conservative won comfortably; that year, he switched constituencies and was Liberal candidate for the Devizes division of Wiltshire at the December 1910 General Election. Devizes was a better seat for the Liberals, they had won it in 1906; the Conservatives had won it back in January 1910. Pocock was unable to wrestle the seat back and the Conservative held on by just over 700 votes, he did not stand for parliament again

Meat Industry Workers Federation

The Meat Industry Workers Federation was a trade union of meat workers in Argentina. The union was founded in the early 1930s. FOIC was led by the Communist Party of Argentina. José Peter was the general secretary of FOIC. FIOC led a major strike in the Argentinian meat-packing industry in 1932; the strike began on May 20, 1932, followed strikes in the tram workers' and farmers' strikes in March and April the same year. Although it only lasted for less than two weeks, it was the largest strike in the country since 1917-1918; the union shut down the largest meat-packing plant in Anglo Frigorífico in Avellaneda. The strike spread to other meat-packing plants in Avellaneda and some workers joined it in Berisso. In preparations for the strike, the communists were able to benefit from their experiences with clandestine activism; as they were unable to hold large public meetings, they contacted workers and held small clandestine meetings with them. The meetings were camouflaged as festivals or other social gatherings.

At Anglo Frigorífico, 4,000 workers joined the strike. Around 3,000 workers participated in the daily mass meetings organized by FOIC and CUSC at Anglo Frigorífico. On May 21, 1931 FOIC mobilized a mass meeting at another meat-packing plant, La Blanca, with 2,500 participants. Violence erupted during the strike, the Communist Party issued a call for workers' self-defense. On May 22, 1932, a meeting was held in Salon Verdi in La Boca. During this meeting, Peter called for continuation of the strike and condemned CGT and FORA for not having joined the strike. However, the strike resulted in a failure for FOIC; the strike was met with repression, striking workers were assaulted by police forces. Police shut it down. In the industries, strikebreakers were brought in to substitute striking workers. FOIC published El Obrero del Frigorífico. Following the 1932 strike, FOIC readjusted some of its policies, it began to recognize the increasing importance of women workers in the meat-packing industries, began to raise the demand for'equal pay for equal work'.

Moreover, with the emergence of Taylorist practices in the meat industry since the 1920s, FOIC demanded an end to piecework and premium system. In 1935, the Communist Party adopted a more moderate approach to union organizing in the meat industry. FOIC worked on two fronts. In 1939 FOIC reached a formal deal with the CGT leadership, in which CGT agreed to prioritize organizing in the meat industry. Moreover, a petition, drafted by José Peter, was presented by the Socialist Party parliamentary faction in the Argentinian Chamber of Deputies, demanding improvements in the situation of meat-packing workers. In 1942, after long negotiations, FOIC reached a deal with the meat-packing industry management regarding pensions for meat workers. One of the first moves of the military junta that seized power in June 1943, was the ban issued on FOIC; the FOIC offices in Berrios and Avellaneda were closed down. FOIC leaders, such as Peter, were arrested. FOIC organized resistance to the new regime. FOIC cadres organized mass meetings in Rosario and Berrios.

They issued a strike petition, with both economic demands as well as a call for release of jailed labour leaders. The management refused to negotiate with the union. A major general strike was organized in September 1943. During the strike, many striking workers were arrested by police. However, the strike paralyzed the meat industry. Towards the end of the month and other FOIC leaders were released; the government agreed to recognize the right to union organizing, FOIC called off the strike. In October 1943, there was yet another clampdown on FOIC, yet more aggressive than the June 1943 crack-down. Negotiations with the management and government on meeting economic demands had failed. On October 22, 1943 the government raided the FOIC offices and the union leaders were jailed; the government ordered that the funds of FOIC was transferred to two persons, expelled from the organization. Following this crack-down, competition surged between the communists, independent unionists and Peronists over hegemony over the meat industry union movement.

The latter two aligned themselves to corner the influence of FOIC. At a meeting held in the Eden del Dock Sur cinema on May 12, 1945, Peter declared that FOIC had been dissolved and encouraged the members and sympathizers of the union should join the autonomous unions in the meat industry. On September 1, 1946 CGT accepted the transfer of the properties of FOIC from Peter


Hastilude is a generic term used in the Middle Ages to refer to many kinds of martial games. The word comes from the Latin hastiludium "lance game". By the 14th century, the term excluded tournaments and was used to describe the other games collectively. Today, the most well-known of the hastiludes are the tournament, or tourney, the joust, but over the medieval period a number of other games and sports developed, which altered in popularity and rules from area to area, from period to period. Distinction was made between the different types by contemporaries in their description, laws and customs. In contrast to the tournament, which comprised teams of large numbers ranging over large tracts of land, the joust was fought between two individuals on horseback, in a small, defined ground known as the lists; the two would ride at each other from opposite ends. In the early fifteenth century, a barrier was introduced to keep the horses apart, to avoid collisions. More informal jousting events would have several horsemen within the lists at once, where each waited to take up the challenge of another, although the aim remained for the joust to be a one-on-one duel.

There were several types of joust, including rules. For example, in fourteenth-century Germany, distinction was made between the Hohenzeuggestech, where the aim was to break the lance, the Scharfrennen, where knights sought to unhorse their opponents; these types called for different lances, saddles. Jousts developed out of the charge at the beginning of the mêlée, but by the thirteenth century had become quite distinct from the tourney; that it was seen as a separate event, with its own rules and customs, is clear from historical documents such as Edward II of England's 1309 ban of all forms of hastilude except the joust. By the nature of its duel, the discrete space required for the action, the joust became a popular spectator and ceremonial sport, with elaborate rituals developing around the whole event; the pas d'armes' or passage of arms was a type of chivalric hastilude that evolved in the late 14th century and remained popular through the 15th century. It involved a knight or group of knights who would stake out a traveled spot, such as a bridge or city gate, let it be known that any other knight who wished to pass must first fight, or be disgraced.

If a traveling venan did not have weapons or horse to meet the challenge, one might be provided, if the venan chose not to fight, he would leave his spurs behind as a sign of humiliation. If a lady passed unescorted, she would leave behind a glove or scarf, to be rescued and returned to her by a future knight who passed that way. Behourd, buhurt and mêlée refer to a class of hastiludes that involve groups of fighters simulating cavalry combat; this type of game formed the core of the tournament during the high medieval period. The quintain known as pavo, may have included a number of lance games used as training for jousting, where the competitor would attempt to strike an object with his lance, sword or other weapon; the common object was a board on a pole, although a mannikin was sometimes used. While the use of horses aided in training for the joust, the game could be played on foot, using a wooden horse or on boats. While referred to by contemporary sources, included in various prohibitions and declarations over the medieval period, little is known about the nature of the tupinaire.

It is a hastilude, or wargame, of some kind, distinct from the other types, but there seems to be no clear description of its rules. Barker, Juliet The Tournament in England: 1100–1400, UK: Boydell Press ISBN 0-85115-450-6


Burattino Burrattino or Burratino, is a minor commedia dell'arte character of the zanni class. In Italian burattino means "puppet", although it is not clear whether the commedia dell'arte character was called Burattino because he moved like a puppet or puppets acquired the name because of Burattino. Though only mildly popular on the stage, he found his real fame in the marionette theater. According to Pierre-Louis Duchartre, the puppet named Burattino became so popular in Italy, that "by the end of the sixteenth century, all marionettes operated by strings and a wire were called burattini, instead of bagatelli or fantoccini, as they had been known up to that time." Today, the Italian word burattino can refer to a hand puppet. Duchartre reproduces two illustrations from 1594 with Burattino, in which he wears a costume similar to Zani's but with a characteristic flat round hat. Tommaso Garzoni associates the character with a small cap called a berettino. Richard Andrews suggests; the word berettino has been used to refer to the ecclesiastical skullcap more known as the zucchetto.

Burattino is one of three commedia dell'arte masks mentioned by Bartolomeo Rossi in the foreword to his 1584 comic pastoral play Fiammella, as examples of low-life characters who speak the Bergamasque dialect, the other two being Pedrolino and Arlecchino. As a rustic dialect, it signaled the character's low social status and was used in Italian theatre into the 18th century. Burattino is in 21 of the 50 scenarios of Flaminio Scala, published in 1611, he appears as a house servant, an innkeeper, a gardener, a peasant, a beggar, a long-lost father. Like Pedrolino, Burrattino is good natured, he is so trustworthy that, in the third of Scala's scenarios, "The Fortunate Isabella", the lone innamorata Isabella takes him along as her sole accompaniment on a journey across the country. When he in the play believes that Isabella has been kidnapped and raped, he weeps and laments at length. Andrews, Richard; the Commedia dell'Arte of Flamino Scala: A Translation and Analysis of 30 Scenarios. Lanham, Maryland: The Scarecrow Press.

ISBN 9780810862074. Duchartre, Pierre-Louis; the Italian Comedy, translated by Randolph T. Weaver. London: George G. Harrap and Co. Ltd.. ISBN 0486216799. Garzoni, Tommaso. La Piazza Universale di tutte le professioni del mondo, edited by Giovanni Battista Bronzini. Florence: Olschki. ISBN 9788822243966. Rossi, Bartolomeo. Fiammella pastorale. Paris: Abel L'Angelier. Copy at Google Books. Rudlin, John. Commedia dell’Arte, An actor’s handbook. London: Routledge. ISBN 9780415047708. Scala, Flaminio. Scenarios of the Commedia dell'Arte: Flaminio Scala's Il Teatro delle Favole Rappresentative, foreword by Kenneth McKee. New York: New York University Press. OCLC 186077


SpeechCycle was a company located in New York City that developed technology that enabled Rich Phone Applications. RPA is a category of customer interaction solutions that orchestrate and extend enterprise systems to the end customer through a natural language interface, accessible over multiple channels including smartphones. SpeechCycle was acquired by Synchronoss, a NJ based company, on April 2012. SpeechCycle was founded in August 2001 by Zor Gorelov, Ruth Brown, Victor Goltsman; the three of them had founded Buzz Company, acquired by Multex in 2000. The management team has grown to include Alan Pan, Roberto Pieraccini, Albert Kim, David Ho and L. Mario Mascioli. SpeechCycle develops complex self-service applications for troubleshooting and technical support of subscriber's services in the cable operator's space, such as high speed internet, cable TV, VoIP-based telephony services. SpeechCycle's applications have helped millions of subscribers fix common problems including rebooting their cable box, correcting their entertainment system configuration and setting up email.

In April 2010 SpeechCycle announced the general market availability of RPA Express, a platform which enables the design, deployment and monitoring of Rich Phone Applications and embed SpeechCycle's best practices. RPA can be deployed on demand. SpeechCycle customers include the largest cable and telecommunication operators in the US and abroad, such as Cablevision, Charter Communications, Time Warner Cable, Bresnan and Telstra