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Tony Hancock

Anthony John Hancock was an English comedian and actor. High-profile during the 1950s and early 1960s, he had a major success with his BBC series Hancock's Half Hour, first broadcast on radio from 1954 on television from 1956, in which he soon formed a strong professional and personal bond with comic actor Sid James. Although Hancock's decision to cease working with James, when it became known in early 1960, disappointed many at the time, his last BBC series in 1961 contains some of his best remembered work. After breaking with his scriptwriters Ray Galton and Alan Simpson that year, his career declined. Hancock was born in Southam Road, Hall Green, but, from the age of three, he was brought up in Bournemouth, where his father, John Hancock, who ran the Railway Hotel in Holdenhurst Road, worked as a comedian and entertainer. After his father's death in 1934, Hancock and his brothers lived with their mother and stepfather Robert Gordon Walker at a small hotel called Durlston Court, in Gervis Road, Bournemouth.

He attended Durlston Court Preparatory School, part of Durlston boarding school near Swanage and Bradfield College in Reading, but left school at the age of fifteen. In 1942, during the Second World War, Hancock joined the RAF Regiment. Following a failed audition for the Entertainments National Service Association, he ended up on the Ralph Reader Gang Show. After the war, he returned to the stage and worked as resident comedian at the Windmill Theatre, a venue which helped to launch the careers of many comedians at the time, took part in radio shows such as Workers' Playtime and Variety Bandbox. Over 1951–52, for one series, Hancock was a cast member of Educating Archie, in which he played the tutor to the nominal star, a ventriloquist's dummy, his appearance in this radio show brought him national recognition, a catchphrase he used in the show, "Flippin' kids!", became popular parlance. The same year, he began to make regular appearances on BBC Television's light entertainment show Kaleidoscope, starred in his own series to be written by Larry Stephens, Hancock's best man at his first wedding.

In 1954, he was given his own eponymous Hancock's Half Hour. Working with scripts from Ray Galton and Alan Simpson, Hancock's Half Hour lasted for seven years and over a hundred episodes in its radio form, from 1956, ran concurrently with an successful BBC television series with the same name; the show starred Hancock as "Anthony Aloysius St John Hancock", living in the shabby "23 Railway Cuttings" in East Cheam. Most episodes portrayed his everyday life as a struggling comedian with aspirations toward straight acting; some episodes, changed this to show him as being a successful actor and/or comedian, or as having a different career such as a struggling barrister. Radio episodes were prone to more surreal storylines, which would have been impractical on television, such as Hancock buying a puppy that grows to be as tall as himself. Sidney James featured in both the radio and TV versions, while the radio version included regulars Bill Kerr, Kenneth Williams and, Moira Lister, Andrée Melly and Hattie Jacques.

The series rejected the variety format dominant in British radio comedy and instead used a form drawn more from everyday life: the situation comedy, with the humour coming from the characters and the circumstances in which they find themselves. Owing to a contractual wrangle with producer Jack Hylton, Hancock had an ITV series, The Tony Hancock Show, during this period, which ran in 1956-57. During the run of his BBC radio and television series, Hancock became an enormous star in Britain. Like few others, he was able to clear the streets while families gathered together to listen to the eagerly awaited episodes, his character changed over the series, but in the earliest episodes the key facets of "the lad himself" were evident. "Sunday Afternoon at Home" and "The Wild Man of the Woods" were top-rating shows and were released on an LP. As an actor with considerable experience in films, Sidney James became more important to the show when the television version began; the regular cast was reduced to just the two men, allowing the humour to come from the interaction between them.

James's character was the realist of the two, puncturing Hancock's pretensions. His character would be dishonest and exploit Hancock's apparent gullibility during the radio series, but in the television version there appeared to be a more genuine friendship between them. Hancock's highly-strung personality made the demands of live broadcasts a constant worry, with the result that, starting from the autumn 1959 series, all episodes of the series were recorded before transmission. Up until every British television comedy show had been performed live, owing to the technical limitations of the time, he was the first performer to receive a £1,000 fee for his performances in a half-hour show. Hancock became anxious that his work with James was turning them into a double act, he told close associates in late 1959, just after the fifth television series had finished being recorded, that he would end his professional association with Sid James after a final series. Hancock left others to tell James, his last BBC series in 1961, retitled Hancock, was without James.

Two episodes are among his best-remembered: "The Blood Donor", in which he goes to a clinic to give blood, contains some famous lines, including "I don't mind giving a reasonable amount, but a pint! That's nearly an armful!".

Georgia Public Service Commission

The Georgia Public Service Commission is a statutory organ of the state government of Georgia. PSC regulates telecommunications, transportation and natural gas services in the U. S. state of Georgia. Commissioners are elected in partisan elections statewide, it is charged with protecting the public interest and promoting a healthy business-investment economy. The PSC is responsible for varying degrees of regulation in State telecommunications and electric companies and for establishing and enforcing the standards for quality of service; the regulatory functions of the PSC have changed since its founding. On October 14, 1879, Georgia became one of the first states to establish a regulatory agency to oversee railroad expansion and competition. Known as the Railroad Commission of Georgia, the commission consisted of three members who were appointed by the governor and served staggered six-year terms. In 1891 telegraph and express companies came under the commission's jurisdiction. By 1907 the commission began to regulate docks and wharves, as well as telephone and electric-power companies, in 1931 its jurisdiction expanded to cover the trucking industry.

In 1922 the Georgia legislature changed the agency's name to the Georgia Public Service Commission to reflect its expanded regulatory role. In 1907 the number of commissioners elected statewide was increased from three to five. Today the five elected commissioners are supported by ninety staff members, every two years, the Chair is selected by the commission members. Beginning with the 2000 election year, each seat on the commission is assigned to one of five districts. Candidates for the commission must reside in the district with the available commission seat, although the entire state continues to vote for all five slots. Commissioners serve staggered six-year terms; the commission depends on appropriations from the Georgia General Assembly. In fiscal year 1999 the total budget of the PSC amounted to $14 million, with $9.5 million coming from the Georgia legislature and the remaining $4.4 million from the federal government and other funds. The fiscal year 2004 budget was $9.3 million. When regulated utility companies bring a rate request before the PSC, the request is first addressed by one of the commission's four standing committees: telecommunications, transportation, or policy development and intergovernmental affairs.

The commissioners are assisted by experts on utility and transportation operations, who may provide testimony and make recommendations regarding rates or arbitration. The PSC makes decisions by a majority vote of the commissioners, it is authorized only to issue administrative orders. Furthermore, its rulings must be consistent with current legal standards and are subject to judicial review by the courts. Although the PSC over the years has regulated the rates and service of the telecommunications and electric industries, today it does not regulate all utility companies within these sectors; the commission regulates only the rates charged and the services provided by most intrastate, investor-owned telecommunications and electric utilities operating in Georgia. The commission does not set rates for municipally owned electric and gas utilities or electric membership corporations, although these utilities consult the commission on such matters as financing and the resolution of territorial disputes.

The commission ensures the safety of all natural-gas pipelines in the state. The commission plays a smaller role with regard to the transportation sector, its authority over truck and express companies and private and for-hire motor carriers is restricted to requiring proof of insurance and safety inspections. The deregulation of the telecommunications and natural gas industries in the 1990s altered the regulatory functions of the PSC. Instead of regulating the rates of telephone and gas services, the commission plays a strong role as a manager and facilitator of open-market competition. Georgia's Telecommunication and Competition Development Act of 1995 and the Federal Telecommunications Act of 1996 have affected the telecommunications industry in Georgia. Both statutes sought to turn the traditional regulated monopoly service into a competitive market, thus the commission no longer sets rates for telephone services but establishes and administers a universal access fund, which ensures reasonable access to services for customers.

By the end of 2003 the number of certificated local competitive telephone exchange providers had grown to 221. More than 1.8 million Georgia customers use natural gas. In early 1997 Georgia became the first state to adopt legislation to deregulate natural gas with the Natural Gas Competition and Deregulation Act; the commission's role under the Natural Gas Act is similar to the one it plays in the telecommunications market: to facilitate the transition from a regulated monopoly to a competitive marketplace. As part of the deregulation process, the Atlanta Gas Light Company, which had long held a monopoly in the market, withdrew from selling natural gas to become a distributor of natural gas in 1999. Unregulated marketing companies now sell natural gas at variable prices, much in the way that long-distance telephone companies operate. By all accounts Georgia's transition from monopoly to market competition has been contentious. Several problems have plagued the deregulation process from the beginning, unusually high gas prices have exacerbated the situation.

As facilitator of the deregulation process, t

Louis Pierre Gratiolet

Louis Pierre Gratiolet was a French anatomist and zoologist, a native of Sainte-Foy-la-Grande, Gironde. He succeeded Isidore Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire as professor of zoology to the Faculty of Sciences at the University of Paris. Gratiolet is remembered for his work in neuroanatomy and physical anthropology, he did extensive research in the field of comparative anatomy, performed important studies regarding the differences and similarities between human and various primate brains. He is credited for introducing the demarcation of the brain's cortical surface into five lobes. With Paul Broca he performed correlative studies of the frontal lobe. Gratiolet was a vocal critic of Broca regarding the latter's belief that a larger brain equated to higher intelligence. Gratiolet's radiation: known as the geniculocalcarine tract; the massive, fan-like fiber system passing from the lateral geniculate body of the thalamus to the visual cortex. Anatomie comparée du système nerveux considéré dans ses rapports avec l’intelligence, with François Leuret, Ballière, vol 1, 1839.

Mémoire sur les Plis Cérébraux de l'Homme et des Primates. Paris: Bertrand, 1854. De la Physiognomie et des Mouvements d'Expression 1865. Recherches sur l’anatomie de l’hippopotame. 1867. This article is based on a translation of an article from the French Wikipedia. Louis Pierre Gratiolet: The Cerebral Lobes and Fissures, J. M. S. Pearce, European Neurology, Vol. 56, No. 4, 2006. Works by or about Louis Pierre Gratiolet at Internet Archive