Privacy and Contextual Computing

July 30, 2014

Privacy, contextual computing, recording of private conversations without one's knowledge - business as usual in this day and age? In the age of technology, is there such a thing as privacy? Can we have any expectation of privacy when our patterns of behavior are being tracked by our use of computers, cell phones, social media and the like? Is this type of thing unethical, illegal, neither? What else is this data used for or what could it be used for in the future? What - if anything - can and should we do about a lack of privacy? Tune into this edition of "Wow! I Didn't Know That" with former Westchester County NY Executive Andy Spano and his co-hosts Tom Creel and Norm Jacknis to hear more about this controversial and intriguing subject. Tweet to weigh in with your opinion.

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Government Consolidation - A Good Thing?

July 30, 2014

Government consolidation; the metropolitan approach to government: is this really more efficient? More and more we are hearing about regional cooperation and metropolitan area governing but is consolidation of governmental entities really the key to greater efficiency, better services and lower taxes? Or does this mean a loss of control by the local government or school district and a lost sense of community by the residents? How do we preserve the notion of "hometown" and "community" while also streamlining the overlap of services that exists from one local government to another? Listen in as former Westchester County NY Executive Andy Spano and his co-hosts Tom Creel and Norm Jacknis lend their expertise and share their thoughts on consolidation of government on the latest edition of "Wow! I Didn't Know That."

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Retirement - has it changed?

July 29, 2014

Retirement in the U.S. - how has it changed in recent years? Is retirement a thing of the past? If more "retirees" are working, is there such a thing and shouldn't we refer to pensions and Social Security income as deferred compensation instead? The facts are that 80% of retirement-aged persons who are working are working because they want to not because they have to and they in fact are the largest demographic group of entrepreneurs in the nation. They take more financial risks and have more free time to collaborate on business ventures than their younger colleagues. Listen to Andy, Norm and Tom on this edition of "Wow! I Didn't Know That" and it may change your view on retiring!

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Economic Growth - As bad as you think?

July 29, 2014

Economics, economic growth, being accurately reported? Negativity in the media regarding the growth of the economy is misleading people to believe things are worse than they really are. The truth is the economy is growing in ways it never has before and our system of measurement is not even touching upon new industries and employment. The GDP does not measure accurately the state of our economy as it doesn't take into account services and information provided by internet companies and other sources where there has been tremendous growth. Tune into this edition of "Wow! I Didn't Know That" for more information on this timely topic. Hear former Westchester County NY Executive Andy Spano and his co-hosts Tom Creel and Norm Jacknis give their view of how to gather accurate information on the state of our economy.

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Segregation in Schools

June 4, 2014

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Segregation in public schools - this year marks the 60th anniversary of the landmark 1954 Supreme Court case Brown v. Board of Education which in essence forced the integration of the American public school system. But according to First Lady Michelle Obama in a recent speech, some of our schools are as segregated as they were back in 1954. Tune into this edition of "Wow! I Didn't Know That" with former Westchester County NY Executive Andy Spano and his co-hosts Norm Jacknis and Tom Creel to hear what the First Lady meant by these remarks. Are our schools really still segregated and how in the 21st century in America can this be true? You'll hear Andy, Norm and Tom identify ways in which segregation still exists and how there is a direct link between success in education and level of income. At a time when there is such emphasis on having an education to get ahead, how can we not realize that it is much more difficult for people without resources to obtain an education? What did Brown v. BOE really accomplish when our failing schools are almost exclusively minority-populated? Join the discussion by following us on Twitter.

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Suburbs Dead?

June 4, 2014

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Suburban flight - a reverse trend? Are the suburbs dead? Data shows that more and more people are leaving the suburbs for city life. The trend of the 1950's and beyond seems to be reversing itself as people are moving back to American cities. But is the distinction between suburban and urban life really that great? More and more suburbs offer an urban lifestyle once only found in America's cities. An increase in cultural institutions and activities, re-creation of the "city square" type center of town, better public transportation and an increased ability to walk from place to place, as well as a greater number of immigrants creating the "melting pot" feeling, have come to characterize American suburban life. Meanwhile cities such as New York have taken on some suburban qualities of their own. Listen in to hear Andy, Norm and Tom discuss American cities and suburbs, current trends and what each can offer the other on this edition of "Wow! I Didn't Know That."

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Libraries and Lifelong Learning

June 4, 2014

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Libraries are becoming more important in our society as the emphasis on knowledge grows. Join Andy, Norm and Tom in this edition of "Wow! I Didn't Know That" as they focus on how we learn in America and the importance of lifelong learning. As we move more and more into the "knowledge zone," creating lifelong learners is tantamount to success and public libraries provide the universal access to knowledge that our society needs. Given that our society cannot afford to send every citizen to college, the library as a learning institution should become a focal point. Coupled with free, online courses, this could be the future of adult education in America.

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U.S. Rank - Still Number 1?

June 4, 2014

#1 in the world? Is the U.S. still on top? We talk about being number one but our actions don't show it. Our economy is the best in the world but does the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) measure the right things? The Social Progress Index measures things that matter to the quality of life in the U.S. - are we number one in this sense? Have we become a nation that is risk-averse? Have our values changed? Tune into this edition of "Wow! I Didn't Know That" to find answers to these and other questions relating to our rank in the world. The hosts move on to talk about the health of the nation in segment two. Join former Westchester County Executive Andy Spano and his co-hosts tech. guru Norm Jacknis and attorney/actor Tom Creel in these timely discussions by following the show on Twitter.

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World War 1 - 100th Anniversary

May 8, 2014

Crimea, Ukraine, Russia - history repeating itself? This year marks the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I, the war to end all wars. This was an unexpected war, a war that was supposed to help the spread of democracy but what it turned out to be was a war with devastating effects on Europe. Europe in fact would never be the same. It was an extremely bloody war with the introductions of weapons and machinery not seen before; it was the first industrial-era war with airplanes, tanks and submarines. It started as a conflict between two small regions and escalated into a major war that eventually led to long-term problems with Russia and Germany resulting in WWII. WWI has special relevance to what is going on today in the same region with Russia's treatment of the Ukraine and the pressure on a stable power like the U.S. to get involved as well as simultaneously deal with a rising power like China. What does the Ukraine have that the U.S. should take an interest in? These countries have been under Russian influence for hundreds of years - why get involved when that involvement could hurt us? We stand to spend billions/trillions of dollars, lose millions of American lives and reduce our ability to grow our own society/economy yet the pressure is there both internally and externally to get involved in the conflict. Listen to this edition of "Wow! I Didn't Know That" with Andy Spano, Norm Jacknis and Tom Creel to hear how history really does repeat itself if allowed to.

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Patents & Inventions

May 8, 2014

Internet, computers, DNA, television and birth control pills: what do they have in common? They are all inventions that were patented and ultimately changed the world. In this ever-expanding global economy, there are thousands, perhaps millions of ideas/inventions waiting to be patented that could affect even more change. In this episode of "Wow! I Didn't Know That" listen in while expert patent attorney Tom Creel tells the story of Wright Aviation, Xerox and other companies and individuals that changed the way we live our lives. From a single idea or invention - built upon by other corresponding or competing inventions - learn how the patent laws help and hinder the creative process; and how these products are ultimately brought to market and end up a part of our daily lives. Andy Spano and Norm Jacknis weigh in with their insights as well.

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