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DC Media Makers
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I picked up my daughter after she finished her stint as a Volunteer for the Montgomery County Teen court. after listening to a few bits of information ( she firmly told me she cannot discuss any specifics) about how the process worked I summarized that it was a great way for Teens to learn the working of the justice system .
The Teen Court system offers a second chance to teenage offenders without the high cost of a criminal record.The program for first-time teenage offenders started by the Montgomery County Attorney's office has been in place for the last 10 years.
The MCPS website http://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/departments/studentaffairs/sao/opportunities/ gives these details :
Teen Court is a justice program run by teens for teens.
Juveniles aged 12 through 17 who have committed a nonviolent minor crime appear before a jury of their peers.
Cases hear in Teen Court involve crimes such as shoplifting, disorderly conduct, destruction of property and possession of alcohol.
The offender must admit guilt since this is a disposition hearing to determine consequences.
Volunteer teens perform the roles of the prosecuting and defense attorneys, bailiff, clerk, and jury. The judge is the only adult directly involved in the court proceedings. Cases are referred to Teen Court by the Montgomery County Police Department and the State of Maryland Department of Juvenile Justice. The case is presented to the teen jury for determining consequences for the offender. After careful consideration of the facts, the jury decides upon a constructive sentence which will include a minimum number of community service hours as well as service on other teen juries. Also, there might be educational programs, essays, and/or apology letters. There is a graduated set of guidelines designed for various offense levels. The offender will be allowed up to sixty days to complete the program. When this is accomplished, the charges will be dismissed.
As I sat waiting for my daughter I saw a lot of teens go by and they all looked happy probably for having given their time for a public cause. I am glad to be helping another teen volunteer for a good cause. I sincerely believe that the system is helpful ( of course I would have loved to see stats on this if any of these teems are repeat offenders)
The contact if interested is Georgene DeBord, Coordinator, at 240-777-7344 Georgine.DeBord@montgomerycountymd.gov (www.communityprosecution.org)
There is a great movement to practice "green" living now. This I not new, if I remember my upbringing from India my Mom had always believed in conservation. Here are the points that I remember which are mostly common sense.
Like I said these are mostly common sense. The one device I wish someone would invent is a way to get hot water as soon as you turn the tap on instead of having to let some water flow till it gets hot. I learnt a lot from my mother an I hope I can impart this to my kids.
Update: Jan 22nd 2008 : Somethings that I remembered after posting.
6. Food : Always take how much you can eat. The advice was almost like " Eat to live and not live to eat". Our platyes had to be completely clean while eating. During my childhood I used to hate Bitter Gourd ( Wikipedia calles it Bitter melon) but neverthless ate it and I like it now.
7. Money : We were taught to be careful about money. I did get pocket money but I grew up nver thinking about what I did not have. The advice - live within your income, never buy anyhting on credit ( I make exceptions for cars and for house mortgage)
I don't go to book stores much and that's mostly because I realize the economics of ordering online save me money. That does not mean I don't like book stores. I love the fact that they have cozy seats and a in-store coffee-shops. Everyone in my family loves book stores and once inside we choose our sections and settle down. Harry Potter book release nights have been memorable. of course there has never been a time when we didn't leave without buying anything.
After setting this stage let me tell you of my time in the Border's book store in Germantown Maryland today. The reason I was there was that my daughter had got a gift card from our friends and these can be used only in Borders and Walden Book stores. I tool the time to search for Social Media books. I was thrilled to see Seth Godin's Meat Ball Sundae (aff) in the
Section - noteworthy hard covers. I have the book but I was thrilled to see it there.
In the new books section I saw one that caught my interest and that's the book that I flipped through at the in store Seattle's Best coffee shop. Sudhir Venkatesh's "Gang Leader for a Day " . Sudhir is a professor at the Columbia University and early in his career went to survey people in the not so safe areas of Chicago. I plan to get the book from the library and read it.
The other book that interested me was a Book on StarBucks called 'its not about the Coffee" . StarBucks and its own language has been a topic of interest and I have a blog post about " What do you order at StarBucks".
I bought the New York Times World Almanac 2008 - Since childhood I loved trivia and this almanac is a great book for facts. I hope my daughter reads it too. I will soon hopefully be tweeting the pearls of knowledge that I learn from this book.
During this visit I also realized that it is easier to take pictures than take notes. I recently discovered a way to make the photos into a PDF - the free Qipit.com website that converts photos to PDF. Using Qipit you could take pictures of whiteboard notes and convert them to pdf docs and send it to the team.
Here are the two pictures of the book "Three Cups of Rice" And then I wanted to blog about the sentence in the back cover.
I used Qipit to make the back over into a PDF. Here is a link to the document. The sentence I wanted to highlight is "We drink 3 cups of tea to do business, The first you are a stranger, the second you become a friend, and the third you join our family and for our family we are prepared to do anything- even die" -Village Chief in the Karakoram Mountains in Pakistan.
i could very well translate that and substitute the tea for beer for the social media and the last sentence would end with " We are prepared to do anything even blog and give you a link" LOL.
On the whole it was a nice trip to Borders. I also picked up Thank you Power - Deborah Norwell which is a very interesting book. I hope book stores will find a way to stay in business and provide some relief from the other wise hyper connected world.
Event Announcement from DC Media Makers http://dcmediamakers.wordpress.com
Special event (space is limited!): chemist-gone-storyteller Nahum Gershon tells his tale of going digital at next DCMM meeting
January 16, 2008 · No Comments
Check out Nahum’s fantastic bio.
Please RSVP per below details as space is limited.
Date: 1/31 6:30-8PM
Address: 1150 18th NW Suite 1020,Washington DC 20036 at Internet2
Metro: one block from Farragut North (red) or 1.5 blocks from Farragut West (orange/blue)
Seating is limited. You MUST RSVP in advance to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please email Jill to clarify if space is still available. THANKS.
It is always interesting to meet new people. I met with Jimmy Gardner at Shady Grove and we took the Metro to DC. It gave a good 30 - 40 minutes to talk. Jimmy is a great guy and he is looking to launch his startup soon. We met on Twitter and then met subsequently in meet ups and have become good friends.
Nahum took some great pictures. It was great to meet Technosailor- Aaron Brazell who recommended a great beer ( see picture above) . Greg Gershman Is going to be announcing some good news in a few weeks I think which will be awesome. We spent a lot of time talking about his projects and I am planning to invite him to speak at a "learning Lunch at Network Solutions in Feb. As far as I know he built one of the first blog search engines.
I think compared to the 6 to 7 people who came to the Dec meet atleast 20 people showed up here. Nikolas the organizer took the bus and metro to be here. The last meeting he came all the way but could not get in since he did not have his id with him. he is a nice guy studying hard at UMD.
Jade and Cherle chatted about the elections. This is going to be the first time that I am voting. I met Jamy for the first time but did not get a chance to talk much. maybe next time.
Joe had his new cards which looked very cool. has a blog post about his cards . It is always nice to meet new people. More people should come to this meet. The restaurant asked that we book a table in advance so we should do that the next meet.
As usual RFD has great beer and I ate a fish sandwich which I enjoyed.
I borrowed the list if attendees from Brian Devines Blog
Andrew (Pharm Country and Blog Pham)
Cherle (The Green House Cat)
Greg (gregword and dc tech beat)
Jade (Not Another Naked Girl)
Jamy (Grateful Dating)
Jimmy (East Cost Blogging)
Joe (dumb things i have done lately)
Leslie (Leslie Bradshaw)
Matthew (My Suburban Destiny and Mister SQL)
Nahum (Art Science)
Nikolas (Thought Torrent)
Ross (Ross Notes and DC Tech Events)
Shashi (Happening, advice & other technology thoughts)
and Zvi (With The Band and skeevisArts)
Are you one of those who is particular about the cube you sit in. I am not. For my new gig I gave up a fabulous good window to move to another particularly good cube but without a window. I always believe with every new job move even within the company you need to change your neighborhood at least to get a new perspective.
Getting to the point I discovered that Diana Chau in the neighboring cube is an actress! Along with her new celebrity status as a Neighbor of Shashib at work , she has acted in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, with The Arlington Players. See rave reviews here .
Her next performance is in Red Hot & Cole - a biographical look into Cole Porter’s life using his music enacted by the McLean Community Players . McLean Community Players have a great review in the Washington post http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/05/09/AR2007050901022.html . The play opens on Friday, January 18th and runs until Saturday, February 2nd at the Alden Theater in McLean Community Center. She is excited about this show because of the sheer talent in the cast and crew of the show.( OK I am testing the Qipit.com service as I write this Blog. Seems a awesome service for free. you can take a picture and qipit.com will convert to a PDF file. great for conference whiteboard pictures or restaurant menus- just as an example)
Want to purchase tickets : http://www.mcleancommunityplayers.org/MCP/Show.cfm?ShowID=Tickets tickets are $17 for Adults and $14 for Seniors/Students
Website for the McLean Community Players: http://www.mcleancommunityplayers.org/MCP/Show.cfm?ShowID=217
I am looking forward to discovering more people around my cube neighborhood and hope to blog about them. Shhhh! don’t tell them
Millions of Indians now will realize their owning a car. The car that costs 1 lakh Rupees about $2500 may dash the hopes of top Automakers hoping to capitalize the Indian Small car market but will definitely create chaos on the already crowded Indian City roads. The key point is Tata has delivered what Ratan Tata promised.
Of course there has been a lot of commentary on this:
In the Outlook section of today's Washington Post Mira Kamdar writes that " the car doesn't meet U.S. safety standards " so sorry folks you can't buy it.
"If millions of Indians and Chinese get to have their own cars, the planet is doomed. Suddenly, the cute little Nano starts to look a lot less winning."
"Even at $2,500, the people's car costs 10 times more than the annual income of most Indians. At this point, there is only one car for approximately every 1,000 Indians. In the United States, the ratio is three cars for every four people."
She also quotes a college student in India" "Just when we can finally start to enjoy the things you people have had for decades -- cars, air conditioners -- you tell us, 'Sorry, too late, you can't now.' I mean, you created this mess. You won't reduce your consumption, but you tell us we can't increase ours."
Mira Kamdar is a Bernard Schwartz Fellow at the Asia Society and the author of "Planet India: The Turbulent Rise of the Largest Democracy and the Future of Our World."
Even before this outlook piece I saw this article In the Washington Post - GAVIN RABINOWITZ of AP.
"Tata Nano will lead to possibly millions more cars hitting already clogged Indian roads, adding to mounting air and noise pollution problems. Others have said Tata will have to sacrifice quality and safety standards to meet the target price.
Company Chairman Ratan Tata has said the car will be the least polluting car in India and meet necessary safety standards.
Chief U.N. climate scientist Rajendra Pachauri, who shared last year's Nobel Peace Prize, said last month that "I am having nightmares" about the prospect of the low-cost car. "
Introducing the car at an auto show in New Delhi, Tata said the Nano had passed domestic and European emission standards and would average about 50 miles per gallon.
"Dr. Pachauri need not have nightmares," said Tata, the chairman.
If its any consolation Tata is the company that is buying the Jaguar and Land Rover brands from Ford writes Tom Krisher in the Washington Post . Indian automaker Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. and U.S. private equity firm One Equity Partners LLC, still were in the running.
So an Indian Company will possibly own the cheapest car and a top premium car brand.
If you do not wish to pay for unsolicited merchandise or make a donation to a charity sending such an item, you may do one of three things (in each case, by law, you have no obligation to the sender):
Furthermore, it is illegal for a company that sends you unordered merchandise to follow the mailing with a bill or dunning communication.
Just like Jimmy many people may not even see their bills as they usually would have direct payment. I would strongly advice people to check thier bills, bank statements and Credit card ststements throroughly. ( i do it every month).
Please DIgg @JJgardner3's post
Update : Jim Gardner posted a update on his Blog " East Coast Blogging" that Allegheny Power has come out and resolved the issue.
Allegheny Power took full responsibility today for inadequately notifying customers they would be charged for two lightbulbs sent through the mail as part of the program.
“Allegheny Power accepts full responsibility for the customer confusion and delivery issues,” Allegheny President David Flitman wrote in response to a letter from members of the Western Maryland delegation of the General Assembly.
Allegheny sent 220,000 customers two energy-efficient bulbs, billing $11.52 for them in 12 monthly payments of 96 cents. The move prompted outrage and complaints to the state’s utilities agency, the Maryland Public Service Commission and the power company that the charges were not clearly explained.
read more | digg story
List of attendees here on Andrew Wright's Blog
Comments from Eric Blair.
Joelogon also wrote about it.
Taken and sent from my phone to be the first to blog about the event :)
Just finished watching 'Waitress". The movie does leave you feeling good and the ending is positive. I always liked "rags to riches" stories. Not having been in to many small towns in the US I am curious about the depiction of the small town life in the movie ? Going and eating regularly in the same diner ? A diner that seems staffed just by 4 people?
I liked this dialog "I don't expect much, give much or get much" - Lew Temple as Cal the Diner owner in the Waitress
I did see a similar movie a few months ago that dealt with food or more precisely -spices- and their effect on life. The movie is " Mistress of Spices" . Of course this movie is entirely a fairy tale and will interest people who like movies with some Asian culture( In this case from India).
Both movies will interest anyone who has time. I would rate Waitress and " Mistress of Spices" as a B.
If you are curious about the beautiful actress Aishwariya Rai nee Bachan then you should see the Mistress of spices.
The director is Gurinder chadha who also made "Bend it like Beckham"
I am also using this Blog to learn and make sure others confused like me will benefit. So asked is question on Twitter - What is a Caucus and what is a primary.?
Here are some great responses. Thanks.
MichBel :It's basically the same thing. The difference is in the rules, how they do it. Caucuses are people talking, primaries are voting.
chrisbaskind A caucus is where bribery is okay.Caucuses allow you to do things that wouldn't be tolerated in standard voting situations
AlbertMaruggi Basically a caucus people gather at a place, listen to some speakers and declare for a candidate. This is a public pronouncement
A primary is more traditional voting in a ballot box. In some states they vote according to party registration,
Caucus states usually reward the better organized candidate, primary usually the better funded and messaged candidate
Caucus is a mass gathering of people who lobby each other. primaries decided in private voting booths
@nahumg Primary- an election. Caucus-people decide 2 participate & register & self select in their precinct.
Please feel free to leave your comments.