An Office Designed for Workers with Autism

By SUSAN DOMINUS FEB. 21, 2019 What happens when people who have trouble fitting into a traditional workplace get one designed just for them? What happens when people who have trouble fitting into a traditional workplace get one designed just for them?By SUSAN DOMINUSBefore Ben Hirasuna showed up for the first job interview of his life, he went for weeks at a time without leaving his parents' home in Santa Monica. Outside, sun poured down; inside, he looked at the top of his forearm and noticed it was every bit as pale as its underside. To say Hirasuna is shy is to say the ocean is big - it captures nothing of the vastness of the feeling. He managed to attend college at Arizona State for just over a year but returned home for good in November 2017. For a few months, he took some classes at a local community college, but eventually his routine gave way to solitude at home. During the day, he slept; at night he rose to battle the enemy in futuristic cities and pastel landscapes on his PC, or tinkered on another monitor with any of the codes (Java, Perl, Rust, C and C#) he taught himself in high school. Finally, last November, his parents insisted that he get a job - any job, at the bakery down the street or at McDonald's, if it came to that.Hirasuna could not imagine a worse hell than a job in customer service, which would require, he sensed, a more cheerful public face than he could possibly muster. He remembered that in September, he went to an innovation fair at his old high school and met the head of a technology consulting business called Auticon, which specializes in hiring people who are, like Hirasuna, on the autism spectrum. He made an appointment with a recruiter at the office, and in early January, he forced himself to make the 10-minute drive to Auticon's office two blocks from the beach. After going upstairs to the right floor, he stood outside the door of the office, stymied by what to do next.Given a few hours, Hirasuna could usually make sense of whatever computer code someone threw at him, but this particular script was elusive. Did he open the door and barge right in? "It seemed kind of rude," Hirasuna said. "Like, 'Hey, here I am!' " A mass of soft, pale brown curls surrounds his head, cloudlike. As he recalled this moment of indecision, he reached up and pulled on a strand of hair a few times. "It was like my brain threw the blue screen of death on me," he recalled. Was he supposed to wait right there for someone to open the door? What if they were busy with another appointment at that moment and he interrupted or even ruined it? Hesitating in the hall, he feared he would just stand there forever, blowing what seemed like such a good opportunity - to do work he might actually like - in a disastrous moment of total self-conflagration, his head exploding with uncertainty. And then it happened. Someone opened the door.Offices, for plenty of people, can occasionally be overwhelming, crowded with feelings too big for cubicles, too personal for a professional setting. A higher-up checks a watch midconversation; a comment in a meeting is talked over; someone and someone else go to lunch. Doubts flourish under fluorescent lights that expose every slight, every interpersonal hurdle.And then there are people like Hirasuna, who are on the autism spectrum; people who feel bombarded by those same clues and cues, all the while knowing they are unreliable interpreters of their meaning. For some people with autism, socializing is an elaborate game with more exceptions than rules, so that any small decision - hover outside the boss's office? don't hover? - poses an insurmountable challenge. Guesswork is prevalent, misapprehension the norm. "When it is hard to read the room, so to speak, it does morph into anxiety over time," said Grey Patton, a 23-year-old employee on the spectrum who graduated from the University of California, Riverside, last spring and who, like Hirasuna, started working at Auticon in January. "It's moving in the dark without a flashlight."The challenges of navigating the social complexities of a workplace is one reason unemployment even among college-educated people with autism appears to be disproportionately high. No good national data exist, but various small studies suggest the problem of joblessness is chronic, says Paul Shattuck, a professor of public health at Drexel University who studies autism outcomes. Anxiety, commonly experienced in people with autism, can make typical workplace competition unbearable; one Auticon employee, in a BBC report, compared his experience at his last job to the television show "Survivor." The interview process alone is a sociability test that many people with autism are destined to fail or inclined to avoid altogether. (Some members of the autism community prefer to be described as "autistic." Others, including those I interviewed at Auticon, preferred to be described as "on the spectrum" or as "a person with autism." "Just don't call me late for dinner," said one who did not have a preference.)Major technology businesses like Microsoft and SAP have made significant efforts over the past several years to hire more people with strong cognitive skills who are on the spectrum, recognizing that they represent untapped potential in the job market. Human-resource departments have modified interview processes, trained staff to accommodate certain sensitivities (to sounds or disruptions) and helped co-workers and managers adjust to those colleagues' needs (for example, closer supervision). Auticon goes one step further; it is an office where people who have autism are a majority. Employees on the spectrum do not make up a pod within a company; instead, they define the predominant culture.Many businesses that recruit people with autism specialize, like Auticon, in quality assurance, which is like a poultry-inspection service for software. Is the log-in working on the home page? What happens if someone right-clicks on this other link? The work can be rote and entry-level or require more skilled analysts to write scripts that test that software automatically, "essentially to see if I can break it," as Hirasuna put it.In 2013, around the same time technology companies first started expanding their hiring of people with autism, Gray Benoist, a father of two sons on the spectrum, plotted out a business for the express purpose of securing his children's future. He knew they were smart and capable; he also knew, as he put it, "that they present themselves in ways that may not be corporate-America kinds of ways." He moved his family from St. Louis, where he had been the chief financial officer of an industrial-product business, and started over in Santa Monica, to create a software quality-assurance business that expanded its offerings over time. With a few partners, he founded MindSpark as a California benefit corporation, a type of for-profit business. It is founded on the radical proposition that social purpose and employee well-being are as essential to their mission as profit. Within five years, the business was thriving, with two offices, one in Culver City and the other in Santa Monica. The company had about 32 employees, ranging from entry-level trainees to skilled automation analysts, all of whom were on the spectrum, as well as about seven neurotypical managers and administrators. (With time, says Rebecca Beam, Auticon's president, the company hopes to promote current analysts into more managerial roles, breaking down that division.) In 2018, Auticon, a German company based in Munich, a business also devoted to employing people on the spectrum, acquired Benoist's start-up.The name MindSpark nicely matched the feel-good ingenuity of the business; Auticon, on the other hand, summons the image of an army of automatons, defined by their diagnoses and marketed to deliver maximum software efficiency. Auticon's marketing material names "pattern recognition" and "uncompromised honesty" as valued skill sets in autistic people. In fact, research is mixed on whether people with autism actually do excel at visual pattern recognition, relative to peers of equivalent I.Q., and the range of talents (and honesty) is highly individual. Selling autism as a brand likely perpetuates some generalizations - even stereotypes - in the name of overcoming bias, a complicated compromise, if a strategic one.A business full of people who are on the autism spectrum provides its own kinds of managerial and interpersonal challenges, but to be the norm in an office, rather than an exception, is an unqualified relief for many of Auticon's employees. Hirasuna noticed the difference in the first week of work, when he was writing an email to his manager. "I realized after the first day, Oh, yeah, I don't have to read this over for nuance and all that stuff," he said. In college, he hated emailing his professors, because he agonized over whether his tone was too forceful or too presumptuous or too inarticulate. At Auticon, he said, he felt a release in simply writing an email, reading it over for typos and sending it out. What was the worst his boss was going to think if he sent out a tone-deaf email? " 'That's autism!' " Hirasuna said with a big, comedic shrug. " 'O.K. - that's what we expected!' "One morning in late January at a daily status meeting at Auticon's Culver City office, Mirzat Musayaf, a manager, gathered a group of four software analysts in the conference room to find out where things stood on a project for a major client. As the meeting began, Kayla, 59, one of the more outgoing members of the office and an informal leader, rocked gently back and forth at the conference table. (She asked that only her first name be used.) Kayla was not offended when Musayaf, whose workstation is across from her own, first placed another computer monitor next to her first one, so her frequent movement would not distract him. "Oh, it drives my husband crazy, too," she assured him. "But it helps me concentrate." (Bill Gates is also known to rock during meetings; a 1990 Fortune article noted that some of his employees, when engaging in intense conversation, did the same, as if emulating his movement.)Musayaf's agenda that day included addressing any mistakes that had been made over the past week. Kayla believed a colleague, who was also sitting at the table, had digressed from instructions directing analysts to notate a certain task in a specific way. As the conversation turned to that issue, the colleague started wringing his hands. His lower jaw jutted out, and he gritted his teeth. He asked a question, then smiled with vindication upon hearing the answer. "O.K.," he said, then leaned in and pointed a finger at Kayla: she was at fault for this issue, he explained, not him. The issue was minor, his reaction stark and defensive; no self-conscious joke or neutral professionalism defanged his point. It was a classic office dynamic playing out in raw, unedited form.Later, in an email to me, Kayla wrote that although she could see how someone neurotypical might interpret his reaction as hostile, she, as someone also on the spectrum, did not. "I knew that he was showing no anger or malice toward me," she wrote. "We understand and respect each other."Musayaf interpreted the moment of tension in the meeting as essentially harmless; he understood the colleague's strong reaction as a symptom of anxiety rather than an unlikable character trait. Musayaf, like the other managers, known as leads, had received a few three-hour training sessions on how to work with people on the spectrum, but he was hardly an expert; that he was drawn to the work at Auticon, despite other options, suggested to the people who hired him that he would be sensitive enough to manage his team well.Musayaf could see that even after the conversation had moved on, Kayla's colleague was still distressed. Musayaf stopped the discussion to make a point. "Look," he said, "there is no correct way, or incorrect." He explained, gently, that his only objective was to keep the project on track. The colleague visibly relaxed.A culture of acceptance occasionally conflicts with a training environment intended to prepare the staff for the possibility of working in a more typical office. Rebecca Beam, a longtime tech recruiter who became president of Auticon when the company acquired MindSpark last year, sensed early on that many Auticon employees felt uneasy when she stopped by their desks in the morning with a big hello. Many of them were uncomfortable with small talk; they had no interest in rehashing their weekends or looking at pictures of Ziggy, Beam's terrier mix; but Beam saw a morning greeting as the bare minimum of office socializing, a nicety they might as well endure, if only for practice.Before working for the company, Beam had no personal connection to someone with autism but believes all individuals deserve work worthy of their talents. She joined the advisory board of MindSpark at its founding and relied on her longstanding business contacts to bring in major clients like Fox and Warner Brothers. But before she was put in charge of Auticon's United States business in June 2018, she hadn't known the staff well enough to realize, as she eventually did, that every decision, no matter how small, mattered.In her first weeks on the job, Beam made what turned out to be a bold move: She gave the Santa Monica office a small makeover, trying to brighten it with some new furniture for the front entryway, a smattering of succulents, some framed posters of illustrated animals. Over a weekend, she also had a wall, once white, painted gray.That Monday, Max Gadson, a 24-year-old analyst who has been with the company for two years, arrived at the office and stopped short, taking in all this newness. He knew something was happening - they had been told to clear their desks - but no one knew exactly what. No one said anything about the wall being painted, much less that it would be gray, and here it was Monday, and now, boom! Gray wall. Gadson does not have obsessive-compulsive disorder, but he imagined that this feeling was a bit like that, the sense that something was out of order. He did not understand why the wall color had changed and sought out his supervisor to talk it through.Another co-worker, Gray Benoist Jr. (the son of MindSpark's founder), who is 31, took issue with a new patterned chair now placed in the entry area. The chair would later prove popular - some staff members avoid the small couch opposite the chair, for fear someone will sit too close to them - but certainly, in the beginning, Beam could tell some employees were out of sorts. One analyst asked why she insisted on placing succulents in the Culver City office when, as he sees it, they were so clearly superfluous. On another occasion, she moved a young man's desk without consulting him, and he temporarily quit. For most of Beam's staff, she realized over time, there is no such thing as a pleasant surprise (unless it's pizza)."People with my type of disorder, it's not that we don't have emotion," Gadson said. "It's that we have too much emotion. We can't push that stuff back."Beam, as she started to understand the office's workings, gave a lot of thought, in her first month, to the size of a couch she was buying for a conference room in Culver City, until the question was no longer about a couch and more about a culture. She knew that if she bought one that was long, employees would sleep on it and not just doze, sitting, with their eyes closed, but stretch out and slumber deeply. Many of her employees have poor sleep habits; some are on medication that can affect their sleep. (Around half of adults with autism also have a mental diagnosis of a psychiatric condition like anxiety or depression, according to a 2015 Kaiser Permanente study of 1,500 people on the autism spectrum.) Would Auticon, going forward, be a place where you could regularly lie down and nap during lunch in the conference room, so long as you made it back to your desk on time? Or was it going to be a place where that was considered inappropriate? In the end, Beam decided to lean into the workplace as an accommodating space: She bought the big couch. At lunch, someone is usually napping on it, even when other employees are playing Ping-Pong on the conference table, their jackets strewn across it for a net.Accommodations that would seem unusual at another office seem perfectly reasonable to the employees at Auticon. At the Culver City office, overhead lights bothered one or two colleagues so much that everyone agreed to work without artificial lights, so that often, by the end of the day, they are all working in pitch darkness, rectangles of soft, bright light from their computers illuminating their faces. Absences, in general, are not encouraged, but they are accepted as a cost of doing business with a population that often experiences depression. Managers adjust, within reason, to their employees' boundaries, rather than the other way around, such as when employees suffering from gastrointestinal problems - a little-understood but common issue for some people on the spectrum - call in to explain, in great detail, why they won't be coming in that day. Another employee had disappeared, without notice, for several days, and his managers were afraid for his safety. "You know, some employers would say to someone like that, 'I'm done,' " Beam said. "But I'm going to work with that person and work with that person, because I see the potential."Beam frequently checks in with Emily Gale, a behavior analyst who consults for Auticon and specializes in autism in the workplace. Gale, in one instance, came in to help resolve an issue with an employee who always said he understood the feedback he was getting on a given task but never actually executed it successfully. "It was clear that the analyst was getting so anxious - I could see it - that he wasn't able to process what it was he was being told," she said. He was rubbing his hands on his knees, rocking, repeating back words without seeming to grasp the context. Ultimately, they worked out a system in which the lead would ask fewer open-ended questions to confirm that the employee understood, and the analyst, instead of being expected to express any uncertainty or confusion during the conversation, would ask follow-up questions by email or Slack. The lead also provided a written cheat sheet with instructions, rather than having the staff member take notes while listening. The lead reported to Gale the following week that he had a better sense of what the analyst did and did not understand and could therefore address it.Some Auticon employees have skills that would likely earn them higher pay were they employed at a big company in the United States. But Auticon invests heavily in their training and offers the kind of bespoke workplace systems that allow for their success, even for analysts in entry-level jobs. It employs analysts with advanced degrees from top universities and people who failed to make it through college, people whose minds work at high operating speed and some with short-term memory challenges (and some with both). Somehow the balance of talents and abilities keeps the operation afloat."I kind of like it here," Hirasuna said, a month into his job. He was learning new programming skills he wouldn't have acquired on his own. He felt the strain of leaving the house every day but also, he had to admit, some relief. As workplaces go, this one was relatively painless: "They accept me as I am."At the Culver City Auticon office one evening in January, several employees took turns playing Super Smash Brothers Ultimate in the conference room during a staff party, while a software analyst sat silently, unmoving, unspeaking, watching for the duration of the two-hour gathering; another played alone at his desk on an Xbox One he had brought with him.In the middle of the main room, several colleagues and Beam were competing in a brainy board game called Scrutineyes, a sophisticated version of I Spy in which competitors name objects on the board that start with a certain letter. "Horus," said one competitor named Will Collett, 31, recognizing the half-falcon, half-man image of the Egyptian god. He spotted a medieval weapon: "Halberd." Before he worked at Auticon, Collett's previous jobs were selling vacuum cleaners door to door and then working at a fast-food restaurant, which refused to promote him for reasons he is still not sure he grasps.A few feet from that game, Grey Patton sat on a small bench near the door. Patton, sweet-faced and floppy-haired, his forehead showing a sheen of perspiration from the stress of the party, needed to sit somewhat apart to stay calm in an office full of people talking and moving in unpredictable directions and playing video games at high volume. As a college student, he said, he attended a party - once. "It felt really claustrophobic," he said. "I was like, O.K., I think I've had enough." He had come to this party mostly for the pepperoni pizza, which he was now eating in peace. Patton could at least be fairly sure, at Auticon, that no one would pressure him to join the fun or even wonder why he did not.The night of the party, Auticon employees could see, if they walked along an outdoor corridor on the way to the bathroom, another office across a courtyard. Its conference room was brightly lit and crowded with about 15 well-dressed employees. The office was the corporate headquarters of a fast-casual vegetarian-restaurant business, and its employees looked well suited to the work - fit, tan but not too tan, as if they had all chosen just the right amount of S.P.F. One person was usually talking at a time; everyone else looked listless. The darker it got outside and the longer the meeting lasted, the more tempting it was for someone walking by to stare into the bright room. The office space looked like a diorama of the world's worst meeting - interminable, held at the end of the day, in a too-small, harshly lit room.The next evening, the same people seemed to have gathered for yet another meeting in that same bright room. In the Auticon office, across the way, the room was, at 5:30, silent and dark, so dark you actually might want a flashlight to move across it. Earlier in the day, the room, though quiet, practically vibrated with an intense sense of collective focus; by early evening, that concentration was giving way to a more meditative energy. Kayla interrupted the silence with a burst of laughter. She had been telling her colleague - the one who had bristled in the meeting - that her son had used small metal numbers to post the number representing pi up to 15 digits on the back of her car. The colleague sent a message on Slack: "I prefer this number: 3.87298334621." The note made her laugh, even though she wasn't sure what it meant. "It's the square root of 15," he told her. She burst out laughing again.The conversation turned to the meeting happening across the courtyard, which seemed to have struck a few people the same way: with a feeling of sympathy. They had to execute tasks at Auticon, but they did not have to perform charm, to fake engagement at an intolerably endless meeting. "Don't they look miserable?" Beam said. Kayla was indignant. "You know that at least some of them are introverts," she said. This seemed like unnatural torture to her, what those employers were doing. It was almost as if they didn't think their employees had feelings.Susan Dominus is a staff writer for the magazine. She last wrote about the psychologist Walter Mischel.Feb. 21, 2019Feb. 21, 2019Feb. 21, 2019Feb. 21, 2019Feb. 21, 2019Feb. 21, 2019Advertisement

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The Hottest Questions About Conference Table
Do you want to know about conference table? Here are some frequently asked questions.1. What size conference table seats 12 people?A designer friend of mine told me once that he allows a minimum of 36 inches of space per person around the circumference, 40-48 inches if the chairs have armrests. Whatever the width of the chair is at the widest point plus 6 inches as a minimum. That means for a square table, you have 3 people per side giving about 9 feet by 9 feet as a minimum. For a rectangular table, I would go with 6 feet by 15 feet. My parents dinner table was 5 feet by 9 feet with 2-3foot wide leaves which made over into 5x15 with both leaves in place which sat 12 people comfortably when we had family get-togethers. The overflow whet to the kid's table(s) which were standard "kitchen" size able to seat 6 per.2. Conference Table Shapes - How to Choose the Right One | Paul DownsIf you are interested in learning about how PDC can help with your plans, please look through our gallery of custom conference tables. You can choose any of these designs as a starting point for your project. Identifying what you like helps our designers get to know your style preferences, or you can submit your own designs that we will use as a guide for fabricating your custom table.3. i want to refinish a conference table but instead of staining it i want to paint blackack. what type of paint?I did a set of ladder back chairs with an oil based black paint and then added three coats of polyurethane to provide extra protection. The poly also lets you get a sheen other than flat or gloss4. Has anyone heard of contav all in one conference table?Please do not let Fianna fail ministers hear of this are they will add the junk to the electronic voting machines and we would end up having to pay millions again for junk5. 7 Best Dining Room Sets Under $200 (2021 Reviews)Having a space to gather is one of the most important elements of building a home. Whether you are coming together with family, friends, roommates or colleagues, a dining room set ensures you have a place to share a meal or work on a project all together. Finding the right furniture to fit your home aesthetic and budget can be difficult but fortunately, we've found seven great dining room sets for under $200. This five-piece rectangular dining room table by Best Choice Products can seat up to four and is made with composite wood and a sleek and sturdy metal frame. The thick tabletop is not only beautifully finished but stain-resistant and easy to clean. The chairs have supportive backing and can be rearranged to accommodate a modular seating design. Perfect for small or large spaces, customers praise this set for being lightweight and sturdy, and exceptionally easy to assemble. In fact, some customers report that it took less than thirty minutes to put together! This table is not made with real wood. Good for: Families with kids as this table is big enough for the whole family and easy to clean. This MIERES dining set can serve multiple functions as its high-top counter works as a dining table, kitchen island, coffee bar or conference table. This table is counter height and has four stools that can easily slide underneath the table to maximize space. Made of high-quality MDF and a corrosion-resistant metal frame, this dining set is both sturdy and durable. Furthermore, the tabletop's varnish is waterproof and wear-resistant to ensure that this table will look great for years to come. With an industrial rustic aesthetic, this dining set is contemporary but still homey and incredibly practical due to its versatile styling. Some customers report that the chairs have sharp edges. Good for: Using as a kitchen island as this is a high-top table and the stools are designed to tuck underneath the table, making it easier to stand at. Also produced by Best Choice Products, this three-piece dining set is intended for small spaces, like a kitchenette or studio apartment. This set, built with a combination of robust engineered wood and solid iron, has been constructed with durability and comfort in mind. The chairs feature a curved backrest to promote better posture and can sustain a 330-pound weight capacity per chair. This cozy table also features a removable lower shelf under the table top for extra storage. Some customers report that this table is unstable if not put together properly, so be sure to follow instructions when assembling. Good for: The customer looking for something small with a design that maximizes space and functionality. This dining room set is made from steel and premium tempered glass and would be a simple and elegant addition to any home or office setting. Customers praise this table for how easy it is to put together as well as its durability. This table is also easy to clean as the tabletop can be wiped down with any glass or kitchen cleaning products. With several different styles and colors to choose from, this table will fit with any home dcor aesthetic. This product also comes with four placemats for a more formal dining experience. While some customers report receiving this product with missing pieces, they also applaud the friendly customer service that's available to troubleshoot issues. Good for: The customer that wants something affordable but still durable as customers report that this table is built to last. This product also comes with a 5-year warranty to ensure customer satisfaction. This 5-piece dining set by Best Choice Products is elegant, functional and one of the most high-quality options available at an affordable price point. Padded high-back chairs made from durable PU leather and a sparkling glass table top contribute to this dining set's sophisticated and modern aesthetic while its rust-resistant steel frame ensures that it has been built to last. The modular design allows for versatility in seating arrangements while the high-quality materials it's made from are easy to wipe down and keep clean. Some customers report quality issues, but returns are accepted within 30 days of purchase. Good for: Customers who want comfortable chairs with their dining set as this table comes with high-back chairs made from soft, synthetic leather. This three-piece faux marble tavern set by Linon is conveniently sized for small spaces and would work well in a variety of settings. Both functional and unobtrusive, this set's rectangular high-top table comes with two backless counter-height stools that can easily slide underneath the table when not in use to maximize space. Available in several color combinations, this dining room set is uniquely stylish with an imitation stone table top, vinyl seat padding and an elegant wood finish. Customers praise this dining set for its versatility, compact size and affordable price. his piece does not have a real granite countertop but a faux stone paper wrapped top. Good for: Customers who are working with a small space like a kitchen nook or studio apartment as this table is compact with stools that tuck underneath the table for maximum convenience. This simple and sophisticated dining room set by Rhomtree comes with a spacious table and two benches to accommodate four to six people. No matter the style of your home, the clean lines and modern elegance of this table will provide an unassuming and cohesive touch to any room. Available in three neutral shades, this dining set is praised for its fast assembly and convenient and utilitarian design. Made from sturdy environmental particle board, this table is water-proof, anti-scratch and easy to clean while its metal frame ensures long-lasting stability. This table has sharp edges which can be hazardous to young children unless you put bumpers on the edges. Good for: The minimalist looking for a dining room set that's sturdy, stylish and affordable. 1. What are important things to consider when purchasing a dining room set? Budget is always the most important factor when purchasing any new furniture. Fortunately, there are plenty of options for dining room sets under $200. You will also want to consider how many people you want your dining room set to accommodate. The style and function of the dining room set should also match your lifestyle. For example, if you know the table will be used for messy crafts or cooking, opt for something easy to clean. Durability is another feature to look at as you will want to buy something that has been made to last. 2. What are some common mistakes when purchasing a dining room table? The biggest mistake that can be made when purchasing a dining room set is selecting a model that does not fit in your space or is made of unexpected materials (for example, faux leather instead of real leather). Be sure to look at the specifics of the fine print on the dining room set you are considering purchasing. Details such as measurements and materials can be a crucial factor in determining whether the set you are interested in will really work in your desired space and lifestyle. 3. What if my dining room set arrives damaged or is missing pieces? Most companies have a customer service policy that guarantees the replacement of broken or missing pieces and parts. Select products even include warranties to cover any damage or breakage that occurs down the road. Furthermore, a 30-day return policy guarantees that you can get a refund for your purchase if you are not completely satisfied with it. 4. What are my options if I do not have a lot of space for a dining room set? Fortunately, there are plenty of dining room sets that will work in small spaces. Be sure to look for something that's more compact and has a space-saving design. For example, some tables are designed so that chairs can slide underneath the table when not in use. Even larger dining room sets with a modular seating design can be pushed in a corner or against a wall to better manage space constraints. 5. What are other spaces I could use a dining room set in? Dining room sets are not just for dining rooms! Many sets can work effectively in an office setting, a coffee bar, meeting table, or workspace. At home, dining room sets can be used in any room of the house for a myriad of purposes, including for playing games, working from home, or as extra countertop space. A dining room set is not just furniture, it's also a way to cultivate a warm and inviting ambiance in your home or office setting. Looking for something for a small studio apartment or office setting? Go with a three-piece set that can be tucked against a wall or in a corner to maximize space. Want something that can accommodate a messy meal or craft project with your big family? A dining set that's easy to clean and allows for more seating will probably be a better choice. No matter your home aesthetic or lifestyle, there are plenty of great options for a dining room set that are stylish, high-quality, and yes, affordable, too! You may also like our other product reviews... 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Edison Loses Virginia Class 5 Girls' Championship in Star Carole Miller's Final Game
RICHMOND - Edison guard Carole Miller didn't receive the treatment typically reserved for star seniors playing in their final game. Instead of leaving to cheers near the end of the Virginia Class 5 state championship game, Miller remained on the court until the final buzzer sounded on Edison's 69-55 loss to Princess Anne. Coach Dianne Lewis wanted Miller, a centerpiece of Edison's teams the past four years, to enjoy her final moments in her navy blue Eagles jersey, as the clock ran out at Virginia Commonwealth University's Siegel Center.Miller guided Edison (27-2) to its second straight state final, but the Virginia signee's 15 points and 10 rebounds weren't enough as the No. 4 Eagles fell to Princess Anne, which has won six straight titles."As the final buzzer sounded, I guess the past four years just ran through my mind," Miller said. "It's not really going to [sink in] until next week when we're not at practice anymore."While attending Lewis's annual youth summer camp, Miller met her future coach in elementary school. Miller was taller than the other youngsters, so Lewis had a feeling Miller could flourish into a star when she reached the Alexandria school.At the time, soccer was Miller's favorite sport. Lewis changed Miller's mind in high school.Miller started on the basketball team as a freshman, and the 5-foot-11 guard cemented herself as a top Northern Virginia player her sophomore year, when she scored 36 points in a double-overtime loss to Highland Springs in the Virginia Class 5 semifinals."Seeing her that game, that was the most proud I've ever been of her," Edison guard Charlotte Jewell said. "She put that work in."The Eagles' only regular season defeat this year came against No. 1 St. John's in December.On Wednesday, Edison led after the first quarter but couldn't keep up with the Cavaliers' size. Princess Anne (26-1), a Virginia Beach powerhouse that claimed its 10th state title, attempted 27 more free throws than its counterpart. Edison is 1-4 in state championship games."We have nothing to hang our heads for," Lewis said.A year ago, after scoring a game-high 20 points in Edison's loss to Princess Anne, Miller proclaimed her optimism for her senior season. On Wednesday, she sat quietly at a news conference table while her teammates and Lewis spoke about their desire to win next season's state crown, with only three seniors graduating.But that isn't Lewis's only objective for next season."I will be in the stands, with the orange and blue on, cheering her on," Lewis said about Miller. "I wish she could play another year, but I'm not saying goodbye to her."
Nathan Sharpe Says Animosity' Towards Losing Tight Matches Is Driving Western Force's Rise Up the La
NOW armed with an "animosity" towards losing tight matches, the Western Force can push on and make the Super Rugby finals.That's the view of inaugural Force skipper Nathan Sharpe, who believes the early season success of his former club is sustainable and cracking the club's first playoffs appearance is not out of the question.The Force play the Waratahs Saturday night in Perth and a fifth straight victory will see them leapfrog their fancied rivals on the Australian conference table, and into prime position overall."You can't discount it (a finals berth)," said Sharpe."I think they could make the finals and that would surprise a few people. But with the way they've been playing, if they keep up the consistency and have some luck with injuries, then they're obviously a chance."But they won't be thinking like that. Whatever side you've got, Foles (Force coach Michael Foley) is always very focused on the task at hand and that's beating the Waratahs."The most capped Super Rugby player of all time (162 games), Sharpe led the Force from their inception but all-too often had the job of explaining post-match how his team had lost another close one. Even after Sharpe's retirement in 2012, the Force continued to be heartbreak kids, letting leads and winnable games slip.Not anymore, believes Sharpe."Experiences count, and it's almost an animosity against losing the close ones. You can see there is a real drive by those players who've been there a while," Sharpe said."That win in Brisbane (over the Reds) showed it, they're winning tight games now. You talk to the guys there and they all talk about this belief that they've got."They have belief in their game, they have belief in the coach and belief in each other. That's a big thing and the more tight games they win, the more belief will come in what they can do."I think they will continue on in the same vein."A successful season would provide a big lift for the Perth franchise after years of struggle.But staying in finals contention could also prove strategically vital for the Force, with the potential for it to change their image in the eyes of recruitment targets.In the past, the Force's geographical isolation and down-table season results saw them having to pay massive overs to land even mediocre players."The money in the game is not what it was so if you are a player, the reason you play the game is to win and be a part of a good culture. The Force have created a good culture," Sharpe said."If you sit down with the Force and they're doing well, it's a more attractive proposition for somehow who a) wants to win games and b) wants good opportunities to play for the Wallabies as well."Force CEO Mark Sinderberry agreed, but cautiously, given the season is not even at the halfway point."What happens with a bit of success - and we have to be realistic, we have only won four games - but in the longer-term, the direction of the organisation is always healthier," Sinderberry said."I am a huge believer always that if you run a good program, then the players will stay. I genuinely believe our players think, while they're here, they are developing."Rugby in WA appears on a nice upswing with the Force's success mirrored at junior development levels. The WA under 17s won the national Junior Gold Cup last week, and under 15s made the finals, while an expanding South African ex-pat population in Perth is proving to be fertile ground for rugby."We are pleased in the overall progress with rugby in the state," Sinderberry said.Growth of more local professional players is a standing goal for the Force but Sinderberry said the influx of foreign recruits should be also be viewed as a positive for Australian rugby.The Force (and Rebels) have special dispensation to sign up to eight foreign development players (who must not have prior Test eligibility). They have six South Africans and two Kiwis.One third of the Force's starting XV against the Waratahs will be foreign players, with four "developing" players - Wilhelm Steenkamp, Sias Ebersohn, Marcel Brache and Jayden Hayward - and marquee recruit halfback Alby Mathewson."The issue with the foreign players is we, collectively in Australian rugby, we should be recognising that it is a healthy thing we grow the overall pool of players for Australia," Sinderberry said."We are trying very hard to bring players who can be not just Force players, but they become eligible for Australia going forward. It is an important vehicle that ourselves and Melbourne have to grow the game. We have to see that as a good thing for Australia."
Harlan Ellison Dies at 84; Acclaimed Science Fiction Writer Was Known for Combative Style
Harlan Ellison, who emerged as a major figure in the New Wave of science fiction writers in the 1960s and became a legend in science fiction and fantasy circles for his award-winning stories and notoriously outspoken and combative persona, died Wednesday night in Los Angeles. He was 84.Ellison died at home in Sherman Oaks in his sleep, according to Susan Shapiro, his Hollywood agent. His death was unexpected."Ellison was immensely talented, immensely argumentative and immensely controversial, all in equal measure," said author John Scalzi, one of The Times' Critics at Large. "Loved or loathed, he was undeniably one of the great figures in science fiction." Since selling his first short story in 1955, the prolific Ellison won multiple awards from the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, the Mystery Writers of America and the Horror Writers Assn.The third most anthologized science fiction writer behind Ray Bradbury and Isaac Asimov, Ellison also won four Writers Guild of America Awards, including those for memorable 1960s episodes of the TV series "The Outer Limits" ("Demon with a Glass Hand") and "Star Trek" ("The City on the Edge of Forever").His best-known short fiction includes the collections "Repent Harlequin! Said the Ticktockman" and "I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream." In 2006, Ellison received the Grand Master Award for lifetime achievement from the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America."He's one of the major post-World War II American writers of science fiction," said Rob Latham, a professor of English and a specialist in science fiction at UC Riverside, which awarded Ellison the university's Eaton Award for Lifetime Achievement in Science Fiction in 2011.That same year Ellison was inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame."He was very influential in changing the field, making it more open to social issues, to explorations of characters," Latham, a senior editor of the journal Science Fiction Studies, told The Times. "He's had an enormous influence on science fiction with his writing, and he's also been an influential editor." That included serving as the editor of "Dangerous Visions: 33 Original Stories," a 1967 book that Latham said "is probably the most important anthology published in the field in the last 50 years and set an agenda for a new kind of science fiction writing that would be more socially engaged and responsive to the times." Ellison hated to be labeled a science fiction writer. ("I don't write about bug-eyed ants or Godzilla!" he once said.) Instead, he preferred terms such as "imaginative fiction" and "contemporary fantasies." In a 1978 review for the Washington Post of Ellison's short story collection "Strange Wine," Joseph McLellan wrote that the "categories are too small-even the catch-all category of science fiction-to describe Harlan Ellison."Lyric poet, satirist, explorer of odd psychological corners, moralist, one-line comedian, purveyor of pure horror and of black comedy; he is all these and more," McLellan wrote.As an emerging author in the 1960s, Ellison became known not just for his fiction. He marched with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. from Selma to Montgomery, Ala., in 1965, wrote political essays and lectured frequently on college campuses."He's one of the most dynamic speakers I've ever seen, and he tends to speak out of a sense of outrage," said Latham. "He was always fighting for a cause. That was something that was clear from his writing and from his persona. He was a battler." Ellison even stood up to a belligerent Frank Sinatra in a verbal exchange over the boots Ellison was wearing in the pool room of the Daisy discotheque in Beverly Hills-an incident captured in Gay Talese's famous 1966 Esquire magazine story "Frank Sinatra Has a Cold." His combativeness occasionally led to legal battles. Among his victories: Reaching an out-of-court agreement in which future video versions and cable showings of the 1984 movie "The Terminator" would carry the credit line "Acknowledgment to the works of Harlan Ellison" after he claimed the film drew material from two of his scripts for "The Outer Limits." Another legal fight ended in 2004 when Ellison and America Online Inc. settled a copyright infringement lawsuit involving examples of his stories posted on the internet without his consent."He always said, 'Pay the writer,'" his longtime literary agent Richard Curtis told The Times. "That was his motto." Ellison was particularly well known for his sometimes colorful dealings and encounters with book editors and TV producers who incurred his ire.He readily acknowledged that he once mailed a dead gopher to a publishing house, and gleefully recounted assaulting his publisher in 1982."I put him in a hold that I had learned from Bruce Lee. I took him to his knees. Then I duck-walked him back to his door," Ellison told The Times' Carolyn Kellogg in 2013. "I picked up a chair and threw it.... It bounced around the room." The publisher had scrambled behind his desk and was dialing the phone. "I jumped on the desk and ripped the phone out of the wall." Then he came to his senses and left for a TV appearance.While writing for the 1960s TV series "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea," he later recalled, he went after an ABC executive by climbing onto the conference table in producer Irwin Allen's office. He then slipped on the table's highly polished surface and caught the executive in the throat with his fist.He was accused of grabbing writer Connie Willis' breasts during the Hugo Awards in 2006, angering many women in the science fiction community. Ellison disputed the charge (but it seemed to be captured on video ).Ellison also was known to show up at TV story conferences carrying a baseball bat. And he once brought a chamois bag containing a pistol to a story conference, during which he casually went about cleaning the gun. (It was, he later said, unloaded.) Over the years, Ellison has been described as fiercely independent, vengeful, sardonic, opinionated, confrontational, foul-mouthed, petulant, infuriating, defiant and a general all-around nuisance-as well as engaging, gregarious, funny, fastidiously organized and generous to his friends.By his own measure, he was "a hard pill to swallow." In the 2008 documentary "Harlan Ellison: Dreams with Sharp Teeth," comedian Robin Williams said of his friend, "He's got the combination of Borscht [Belt] and Berkeley." "There's a real power to the way he uses the language and how he draws pictures in your mind," said Ron Moore, an executive producer of the 2004-09 TV series "Battlestar Galactica." And author Neil Gaiman observed: "The words-there is an attention to the words. There is an attention to the sound of the words. You're reading them in your head, and they sing." A two-fingered typist who favored manual Olympia typewriters, Ellison did his writing in the large, book- and memorabilia-crammed office in his longtime home in the hills of Sherman Oaks.He shared the labyrinthine house, which he dubbed The Lost Aztec Temple of Mars, with his fifth wife, Susan, whom he married in 1986."At long last, after four bad marriages, I've found someone who can stand me for more than 20 minutes and doesn't go shrieking into the night," he told the Cleveland Plain Dealer in 2003.The son of a dentist, Ellison was born May 27, 1934, in Cleveland, a town he described as being "very anti-Semitic." While growing up, he was regularly beaten up by his classmates. And, he observed in the documentary, "When you've been made an outsider, you are always angry." At 13, he ran away from home and joined a carnival. Although he was found in Kansas City, Mo., three months later and returned home, he ran away again several months later to Canada, where he worked in a lumber camp. As a teenager, he also worked on tuna boats out of Galveston, Texas, and driving a truck carrying nitroglycerin on a construction job in North Carolina."And all that time, if I wasn't writing, I was thinking about, 'Gee, I could write that down like this...,' " he said in the documentary. "I picked up the writer's true education on the road." Thrown out of Ohio State University for telling off a writing professor who said he had no talent, Ellison moved to New York City in 1955 and soon began selling short stories for a penny a word.He served two years in the Army in the late '50s then moved to Los Angeles in 1962.While continuing to write stories for science fiction, western, detective and men's magazines, Ellison broke into Hollywood writing scripts for TV series such as "Burke's Law," "The Alfred Hitchcock Hour" and "The Man From U.N.C.L.E." He also co-wrote "The Oscar," a 1966 movie about Hollywood for which he frequently apologized.Ellison's prolific writing career included reviews, articles and essays. Collections of his columns on television for the Los Angeles Free Press, "The Glass Teat" (1970) and "The Other Glass Teat" (1975), are still used in college and university media courses around the country.His later television credits include serving as creative consultant on the new version of "The Twilight Zone" in the 1980s and working as conceptual consultant on the 1990s series "Babylon 5." In his 1990 interview with The Times, Ellison said that he continued to write "because all writers in some insane place believe that to write is a holy chore-that what one wishes to do is speak to one's time, to make a difference, to say: 'I was here. I was a force for good in some way.'" McLellan is a former Times staff writer.
How to Build a Conference Table / Dining Table W/ Walnut & Steel
In this video, I show you how to build this conference table (would also make a great dining table) from Walnut and steel. Watch the video then follow the steps below!The bases are made from steel 1" 16ga square tubing. I cut my pieces and then welded them together using solid core MIG. After welding, I ground down my welds using an angle grinder and painted the bases using spray enamel.I used rough cut Walnut for the top. To dimension the lumber, I used a combination of a jointer, planer, and table saw. After your boards are to their correct dimensions, glue them up into a panel. I used a Festool Domino XL to assist in keeping the boards aligned during glue up. After gluing up, trim the ends of the panels square using a circular saw or track saw. Next, cut the mortises into the tops using the Domino XL and then glue in the tenons. Drill holes in the tenons to accept dowels. These dowels will help hold the breadboard ends in top while the wood expands and contracts seasonally. Cut mortises into the breadboard ends as well, make all but the center mortise loose. Install the breadboard end, gluing only the center tenon, and then pound in the dowels. Trim the ends of the breadboards flush.Thoroughly sand your tops, working your way from 80 grit to 120 grit to 180 grit. I chamfered the edges of my tops, but you could use a roundover bit or sandpaper if you want a rounded look. After sanding, wipe the surface with mineral spirits and then apply finish. I applied one coat of General Finishes Seal-A-Cell then applied three coats of General Finishes Arm-R-Seal, sanding better coats of Arm-R-Seal. This conference table is modular and can split down the center into two separate workstations. Because of this, the client wanted the tables on casters for each movement. To install the casters, I cut Walnut plugs that fit into the bottom of the legs and drilled holes in them to accept the casters.To install the top, screw it to the support brackets you welded to the frame. Finally, add a latch at each end of the tables to keep them together when being used as a conference table.I'm really happy with the way this one turned out! If you'd like more details dimensions, I have a SketchUp file available on my website here. If you have any questions, let me know. Also, make sure to watch the video at the top of the Instructable, as it has way more detail. Enjoy!
9/11: Ten Years Later - the Remembrance Project Shows Families Searching for Solace
Once a month, Gordon Huie parks his car in Chinatown and stops at a bakery around the corner from his church. He buys a cup of plain tea with milk, puts it in a bag and begins his walk to Ground Zero.The tea is for his sister, Susan."We would go to church together, and we would stop here first," he said. "Sis always insisted on buying. She never let anyone do anything for her."He walks out of Chinatown, past the school he and his sister attended before moving to New Jersey, past New York Downtown Hospital, where he spent several hours on Sept. 11, 2001, stitching people up."They put me in a conference room upstairs. I was working on a conference table upstairs, with a suture set and a few bottles of alcohol," said Huie, the senior physician assistant in orthopaedics at Hackensack University Medical Center. "The sutures themselves were very coarse, the heaviest kind."40 videos documenting the stories of those who lost loved ones on 9/11 can be seen through the lens of Star-Ledger videographer Jennifer Brown.• View "The Remembrance Project" here on NJ.com.• iPad users can download the New Jersey Special Reports app and view "Enduring Memories of September 11."As survivors staggered into the hospital, Huie's job was to close their wounds, and get them on their way. He had no idea he was about to suffer a wound of his own, one that would never close. He did not know his sister was on the 106th floor of the north tower for a conference when the attack came.Next Sunday is the 10th anniversary of the terror attacks on America.There will be public remembrances for the 2,977 people murdered, at Ground Zero, the Pentagon and Shanksville. There will be other memorial dedications and smaller ceremonies across the country.A nation will pause to remember. For families, there is no pause to forget.For people like Gordon Huie, it's been 10 years of minutes. Because a minute doesn't go by without them thinking of their sons or daughters, husbands or wives, brothers or sisters, or best friends."A lot of my life was lost with Sis. I'm ready to join her," he said. "I loved her so much. I miss her so much."He talks of the unknown death toll of 9/11. The rescue workers. The suicides. The broken hearts. The other problems that plague the families of violent-crime victims."We'll never know how many people were murdered that day," he said.Gordon Huie has never cleaned the shoes he was wearing the day the towers collapsed.The dust on his shoes, maybe one miniscule particle, could be a part of his sister's remains, and he never wants to wash it away. Not today, not ever.ANOTHER YEAR, ANOTHER DAYOn the 20th floor of One Liberty Plaza is a secret, locked place, simply called "The Family Room." It is high above the Ground Zero construction site, high above the new memorial and the museum preview storefront and its gift shop.The large room is covered with pictures of the people killed on 9/11. Families come on birthdays, or wedding anniversaries, or for Christmas. Teddy bears, dried flowers, balloons, cards and children's drawings are tacked to the walls. There are thousands of notes of longing and remembrance. The most prevalent word in the room is "Love."And it will be tomorrow, and the day after, and day after, and day after. And on the 20th anniversary, and the 30th, and as long as all those people who loved live.Because next Sunday is not the 10th anniversary of 9/11 for the families of victims. It is just another day they love and mourn their invisible loved ones. Including two leap years, it will be 3,652 days, to be exact. Next Monday will be the 3,653rd.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for Conference Table
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Our collection has different designs from where you can make a choice.Office Sofa and Couches-Need Office Sofa and Couches? Get it here. Convert your office corner into a designer one with comfortable sofa and couches. Cabinets and Safes-Keep your important files and documents safe with our quality cabinets and safes.Note: For price details please contact to the mentioned number - 8769745712, 8209247496I hope this answer will help you a lot...!------What other writing utensils beside a pencil and pen are commonly used?One of the first assignments in my college Drawing class was to create a drawing using anything other than a pen, pencil, or crayon, on any medium other than a sheet of paper or canvas, and then show it at the next class. It could be either representational or abstract, but it had to employ linear graphical elements (or just lines) in a deliberate way to create an identifiable image that previously didn't exist and could be viewed by the class. (In other words, nothing ephemeral or conceptual. ) This wasn't about writing or text creation, but it did involve using graphical elements that could be "read" (or interpreted) to express an idea.I created a three-dimensional image of a stairway using various lengths of ordinary white plastic clothesline that I draped from the railing of the mezzanine balcony situated just down the hall from the art classroom. It extended over the balcony railing and down into the meeting room/lounge on the level below it, and was anchored at its lower end onto the top of a large conference table. (My art teacher loved it. )Here are some things that can be used to create text:KeyboardsTypewritersLithography equipmentOffset pressesPixels on a computer display (Now there's an idea...)Carved wood blocks and rubber blocks (block printing)Sewing needles and textile threadsScissorsCraft knivesKnitting needlesChalkDry-erase markersCharcoal sticksPastel crayonsWax coloring crayonsCans of spray paintPaint brushesAirbrushesSmoke generators and nozzles (installed on airplanes for skywriting).Pointed sticksPebbles and stonesColored sandChiselsWood carving knivesRouter bitsScroll sawsEngraving toolsStringBent wireStickersBent glass tubing filled with neon gas and electrically stimulatedLinear arrangements of electric lightsArrangements of sticks, straw, reeds, etc.Landscape formsRoof shinglesCut or torn strips of paperArchitectural formsConcreteBaked or fired clayBricksTilesPlasterStencilsSilk screen printingCake decorating toolsThe steamed milk nozzle on an espresso coffee machineCans of whipped creamFingersTattoo needlesFootprintsLabel makers and label tapeStrips of masking tapeI am sure there are more, but that's enough for now. People are endlessly inventive and can devise tools and materials or employ found items to express thoughts in graphic form. Almost anything can be used to create writing. 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Rectangular Conference TableThe Rectangular is one of the oldest design of the conference tables which is still in fashion"Rectangular Conference Table"HighMoon Office Furniture is known as the comfortable and luxury Office Furniture Designers in U.A.Ewe have warehouses in U.A.E where you can visit and see how we produce the best designsHighmoon Office Furniture Company Dubai - Modern Office Furniture Collection Online UAE------Was Twitter not invited to Trump's tech industry meeting because they refused to make CrookedHillary emoji during his 2016 US Presidential campaign?That's what Politico says.Trump, on the other hand, says there wasn't enough room for them because the conference table was too small. Another excuse is the company is not large enough.Twitter was told it was "bounced" from Wednesday's meeting between tech executives and President-elect Donald Trump in retribution for refusing during the campaign to allow an emoji version of the hashtag #CrookedHillary, according to a source close to the situation. Twitter was one of the few major U. S. tech companies not represented at Wednesday afternoon's Trump Tower meeting attended by, among others, Apple's Tim Cook, Amazon's Jeff Bezos, Facebook's Sheryl Sandberg, and Tesla's Elon Musk - an omission all the more striking because of Trump's heavy dependence on the Twitter platform. With some 17.3 million followers of his account, the president-elect has made Twitter into the de facto press channel of his transition operation.Trump's campaign also made a $5 million deal with Twitter before the election, in which the campaign committed "to spending a certain amount on advertising and in exchange receive discounts, perks, and custom solutions," the campaign's director of digital advertising and fund raising, Gary Coby, wrote in a Medium post last month. So the campaign objected when the company refused to allow the anti-Clinton emoji.Coby wrote that Dorsey personally intervened to block the Trump operation from deploying the emoji, which would have shown, in various renderings, small bags of money being given away or stolen. That emoji would have been offered to users as a replacement for the hashtag #CrookedHillary, a preferred Trump insult for his Democratic opponent. "We told them it was BS and what they were doing with a public platform was incredibly reckless and dangerous," wrote Coby of the back-and-forth between the Trump operation and Twitter.In recent days, Twitter also found itself standing apart from its Silicon Valley counterparts when it comes to Trump. It was the only major tech company to say on the record that it would refuse to participate in building a database of Muslims, a prospect the president-elect has floated. Source: Twitter cut out of Trump tech meeting over failed emoji deal------What major differences are there between convention DMing and home DMing?They aren't that different, but you may need to force yourself to grow beyond the tightly circumscribed four hour LFR experience. (This is coming from someone who loves LFR; I play and run it a lot.) You're going to want plots that don't fit into one session. I'd take a look at the Embers of Dawn mini campaign for some inspiration -- not only is there an overarching plot that extends for the entire 50ish hour campaign, there are hooks for future adventures built in. You also need to be ready for your players to go off in a totally random direction. In LFR, most players will tacitly accept that there's something between a railroad and a strongly implied walkway leading from beginning to end, and they'll accept an adventure from a strange guy in a bar even if he's not paying them up front. In a home game, they'll be more independently minded and sometimes they just won't want to help Yazeth Cobb. You can't be too in love with your own plot.It may help to have a folder of prebuilt encounters, events, and so on. Doesn't have to be big, just stuff you can throw in there when the players head in the opposite direction. Random tables, likewise, are your friend. If they get interested in talking to the barmaid and you freeze up on ad libbing details, a random personality chart will get you started again.For the purest form of abandoning your own plot, check out R. S. Conley's notes on sandbox campaigns. You don't have to run a sandbox campaign, but everything in there will still be helpful.Find opportunities for extended roleplay, if that's what your players want. I started running a home game again recently after a year of mostly LFR, and I've been mentally earmarking some sessions as talky sessions. It forces me to get back into the habit of not rushing roleplay, plus it's good for pace. Your players will probably enjoy the downtime -- not every adventure needs to be of equal importance.
'the Onion' Writers' Room Table on Sale for $10,000 on Craigslist
With The Onion editorial staff leaving their decade-long home in New York City, so with them goes a piece of comedy history.The satirical newspaper's writers' room conference table is now for sale on Craigslist . The asking price? $10,000, or best offer."This table is the site where tens of thousands of millions of ideas have been conceived, developed, painfully delivered, raised, nurtured and chucked into the world," the ad reads. "Majestic comedic charisma may be embedded into the fibrous tissue that forms this otherwise completely standard piece." What is most likely a sad day for The Onion could also be one (rich) diehard fan's lucky opportunity to own a comedic artifact, if not just a really interesting piece of office furniture. Every story they've put out in the last 10 years, including the now infamous 9/11 issue , has been worked out at this table, not to mention all the noteworthy figures that have enjoyed whiskey around it on Friday nights And if there was any doubt as to where the proceeds will be allocated, one Onion editor offered the definitive answer on Twitter.The sale comes ahead of a temporary move for the NYC-based staff before a permanent move to Chicago later this year when the company consolidates its entire staff there. The editorial staff has worked in SoHo since 2001 and has to choose between staying in New York or leaving their positions. Current Editor-in-Chief Joe Randazzo has already decided not to go LOOK : The Craigslist Ad
Inside the Dying Moments of the Trump-kim Summit at a Hanoi Hotel
By Ju-min Park and James PearsonHANOI (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un were supposed to tuck into a delicate meal of foie gras, snowfish and candied ginseng, prepared by North Korean and Western chefs, on the second day of their nuclear summit.The lunch was never served.As chefs and hotel staff were poised to put the final touches to their creations, the White House announced Trump and Kim would be leaving the Metropole hotel in the Vietnamese capital, Hanoi, without a deal, and without lunch."The cancellation was really last minute. Everything was ready," one of two sources with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters.It was the dying moment of a deal aimed at dismantling North Korea's nuclear program and paving the way for the resolution to the technically unfinished 1950-53 Korean War.Just hours earlier, both Trump and Kim had said they were optimistic about progress.The Metropole, a grand, colonial-era hotel in the center of Hanoi's French Quarter, had seemed swept along with the hope the day before the summit unraveled.On Wednesday, a Reuters correspondent saw U.S. and North Korean security personnel standing side-by-side guarding the entrance to rooms reserved for the summit, politely taking it in turns to open the door for each other.In between preparing rooms for the high-stakes talks, North Korean and American officials made small talk about the crimson flowers by the pool, where Trump and Kim would take a stroll the next day following their first working meeting.At lunchtime on Wednesday, a North Korean bodyguard craned his neck to get a look at a group of U.S. security staff returning with bags of burgers from a nearby McDonald's.THE ONE THAT GOT AWAYBut just before lunch on Thursday, the expectant mood in the Metropole changed.Despite a promising start, with Kim taking his first-ever question from a foreign journalist and both leaders seemingly upbeat that a deal was to be done, the working lunch at which it was hoped final details would be tidied away, never happened.After motorcades whisked Trump and Kim away from different sides of the hotel, life started to return to normal.Over beers with her husband in the hotel restaurant, Cynthia Pagano, a 65-year-old guest from the U.S. state of Georgia, said she had been excited to see a "moment of history" unfold."Won't they meet again tomorrow? Oh no," her husband, Ray Pagano, said.The La Veranda Room, where Trump and Kim shook hands and took questions from the White House press corps, the conference table the leaders had negotiated across had been taken away but North Korean and American flags still stood.It is not clear what became of the snowfish lunch so lovingly prepared."It's a pity," one of the sources with direct knowledge said."It was a fantastic dish".(Reporting by Ju-min Park and James Pearson; Additional reporting by Soyoung Kim; Editing by Robert Birsel)
How Can I Insert a Big Table in IEEE Template?
You need to use a table* environment instead of a table environment, to allow the float to take up the space of both columns. In addition, you need to do something to reduce the width of the table. I suggest you use a tabularx environment instead of the tabular environment and that you use a centered version of the X column type for columns 2 thru 11. Use an l column type for the first column and a c column type for the final column. (If you really want to left-align all cell contents, use the X column type for columns 2 thru 11.)Oh, and to try to give your table a more "open" look, say, by getting rid of all vertical lines and most horizontal lines and by generating well-spaced horizontal rules with the help of the booktabs package.• Related QuestionsCenter text in multirow tableI would like to recommend that you take the following measures: give the table a much more open "look", mainly by omitting all vertical rules and using fewer, but well-spaced horizontal rules. (The latter may be achieved by loading the booktabs package and employing its macros toprule, midrule, etc.) Iemploy a tabularx environment and let the first column automatically insert line breaks in cells as neededuse the basic c column type for all ten data columnsdo not bold-face all header cells unless you feel an acute urge to yell at your readersset setlengthtabcolsep4.5pt to obviate the need for text wrapping in the first columnreplace vec... with oversetlongrightarrow.... This is how the resulting table looks like:I would like to argue that by giving the table a more open look, the issue of whether or not some cells "look centered" more or less vanishes automatically------After blowing a job interview tremendously, what can I do to control damage? closedNever ever schedule a phone/online job interview in a space that you don't control.If the interviewer understood what happened, he could justify not hiring you simply by logic "If this guy did something so dumb (forgive me for not being politically correct here) even in a situation critical for his own career, he will also do such stuff if we give him a job"Lesson: pick the field of battle. If you can't do it from your home, go outside (from work) and do the interview in your car while parked, if there is no better option. As for that interview and chances to recover the situation... the chance is next to none. Maybe if they have no other applicants and your skills are rather good, but it would be an uphill battle even in that case------In 12 Monkeys, why were the scientists who sent Bruce Willis back in time so weird?In many stories of this sort - the classic ones, perhaps, being by Robert W. Chambers, esp. 'The Repairer Of Reputations', which is well worth reading - the main plot device could be summed up in a question: Where does the real world we all know end, and the looney world of a schizophrenic begin?In Twelve Monkeys (the movie), I think the unique plot device is an inversion of this one. The question is, where does the reality begin? obviously there's more than one screw loose - or a dozen - in the world the movie portrays. The trailer drops a broad hint: "Is this the past .... or the present .... or the future ?"So - though those people-in-labcoats singing is a very memorable scene indeed - are they really singing? is the whole scene real at all? The answer depends upon where you put your belief------When you see people in Star Wars Imperial regalia, does it ruin the effect when the officers have facial hair?If you count mustaches as facial hair, there's at least two prominent examples of Imperial Officers from the films with a little something on the upper lip:Wullf Yularen, who was the officer in the white uniform at the conference table on the original Death Star. The same character would be later portrayed in the CGI series Star Wars: The Clone Wars.Fleet Admiral Kendal Ozzel, who brought the Executor's fleet out of lightspeed too close to Hoth, prompting Vader to retire him from Imperial service via force choke. If you step away from the movies, and into the Legends/Expanded Universe material, another notable example can be found in Captain Gilad Pellaeon, originally from Timothy Zahn's Thrawn Triology, who for nearly all of his Imperial Navy career is depicted as having a bushy white mustache.------Would it be a good idea for the nations of Japan and China to resolve any disputes and settle their quarrels for the benefit of all countries and people in the region?You an American?Americans in particular have this weird view that you can have everyone sit down at a conference table, forget hundreds of years of history, and then have a peace agreement that settles everything for all time. So they have this bad habit of putting everyone at a table, coming up with an agreement, and then have everything fall apart five minutes after everyone leaves the table.There are disputes that are unresolvable and quarrels that can't be settled. Rather than settling everything, you just do what can be done. China and Japan aren't shooting at each other, and both China and Japan right now are a little worried about what Trump is going to do tomorrow.------DevDays 2011: What equipment is recommended for note-taking and participation? closedDevDays is an educational experience for everyone involved (especially us) - so yes, we want people to be able to retain all of the things they learn.1) Yes, laptops are recommended (if you so desire) - in fact, we'll be providing lots of classroom style seating with tables so you even have somewhere to put the laptop (as opposed to your lap).2) Some of the talks will probably be made available online after the conference. We won't decide which ones or how many until later, but the only way to get ALL of the content is to be there as we will not be making everything available online.3) Yes, recording AUDIO only of the talks is permitted. Video recording tends to get disruptive to the rest of the audience (with people holding up cameras/standing/fiddling with them/etc) so we'll be asking people not to record video.Hope this helps.------How should I organize my poster presentation?I think one of the things people forget in presenting academic posters is that it is supposed to be a summary of your work, and generally speaking its role is not peer review, so although you might really want to win the poster prize, most poster viewers are more concerned with communication (as you are). Posters at academic conferences tend to be overinclusive and visually confused. Even well designed ones. I like plain backgrounds, understated fonts like myriad or gill, two to three of the same colors throughout the poster, and colour should communicate, not adorn. Colour should be concentrated in areas that then become a focus. And don't be bound by the grid, people like a little disruption. The best thing to do when designing is don't. Hope that's all abstract and useless enough for you. Best of luck------How to change figure caption to Fig. 1. in stead of Fig. 1: duplicateI'm not sure I fully understand your setup since the IEEEconf document class -- which you say you're using -- already uses a dot (.) rather than a colon (:) to separate the float's number from the caption text. Are you maybe loading some specialized packages to modify the appearance of floats? Alternatively, are you maybe using an obsolete version of the file IEEEconf.cls? The version of the file available on the CTAN (and distributed with current versions of TeXLive and MikTeX) is v1.4, 2009/04/05.Other than the separator issue, I discern two additional objectives you're looking to achieve: Typeset Fig. rather than Figure as the "name" of figure floats, and use Roman instead of arabic numbering for table floats. Both of these elements are easy to implement via renewcommand instructions. (Note that the font used for the figure and table captions is Helvetica-Bold as per the default settings of the IEEEconf document class.)------How fantastic or awful is your office desk chair?My office chairs are simply amazing for its awesome colors and highest flexibility. It is been 2 years since I purchase them and still they are duly operational. In this case, I would recommend you too to visit Highmoon Office Furniture at Al Quoz, Dubai to try a set of exclusive office furniture. I can bet that you will enjoy their products. Also they have the best quality products at lowest prices. If this helps u, I am just happy!Their official web address is: Highmoon Office Furniture Company Dubai - Complete Modern Office Furniture Solutionthey have the most modern sets of meeting tables, conference tables, office chairs, ergonomic chairs, executive desks, l-shaped office desks, workstations and lots more. I am sharing some sample images as well:Please go through the above details and make your finest choices as I once made!------Will anyone be attending the NECSS Conference in April 2013?I am much closer to the venue than Sklivvz, so I may be able to go. Unfortunately, my work life is very unpredictable and I could be prevented from going due to other high priority commitments. If you don't mind waiting around a bit, so that I am more able to put a plan into my schedule, then I should be able to give a more definitive answer.Some things that may help in driving the priority up on this would be that if you issued some sort of obligation on me to go. For instance, if SE were to put up the conference fee, or if there was some sort of display table that I am needed to man, then I would have leverage with both my employer as well as my wife to say that not only would I like to go, but I am required to go------Why is the Speaker of the House able to stop a vote on a clean spending bill?Is there a mechanism whereby the house can force such a vote to take place against the will of the speaker?No. The House Amendment H.R. 368, to the Continuing Resolution bill specifically grants the Majority Leader or his designee that right. Even replacing him as in Mr.A would still require the will of the Speaker pro tempore, for this particular bill. Passing a different clean resolution might be possible, but this one specifically forbids it.Resolved, That the House hereby (1) takes from the Speakers table the joint resolution (H.J. Res. 59) making continuing appropriations for fiscal year 2014, and for other purposes, with the House amendment to the Senate amendment thereto, (2) insists on its amendment, and (3) requests a conference with the Senate thereon.SEC. 2. Any motion pursuant to clause 4 of rule XXII relating to House Joint Resolution 59 may be offered only by the Majority Leader or his designee------The benefits I can ask for from companies in Germany?Firstly - check out open positions for similar jobs (for ex. here on StackOverflow). They usually write all perks/benefits they give their employees. So you can see whats kinda normal to get everywhere and what are things that can be given but aren't common. Second - As a newbie, ask for training. Certifications or at least one conference visit per year in your field. Third - If you develop software, it's common to get all the stuff you need to work from your company. I develop mobile apps, and I got a laptop and smartphone from my company, because I need it for work; if I work on smartwatch or tablet apps, then they need to provide me with a tabled and/or smartwatch. Don't be afraid to negotiate about anything you need to do your job
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