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Nintendo's missing franchises and their chances of coming to Switch (long read)
“I want X for Switch”, “when is X coming to the Switch”, “X is perfect for the Switch!” How often have you heard or said these sentences? Quite a lot, probably, especially about Nintendo franchises. Nintendo fans really like first-party games, and they’re always asking for their favorites to come back. Problem is, even though Nintendo owns dozens of franchises, there’s only a few that are guaranteed to show up during any given console, so fans of smaller franchises are left wondering when they’ll play them again. Well, today I’ll try to mostly answer these questions. I’ll take a look at several, Nintendo-owned franchises and try to figure out what are their chances of coming to Switch. I’ll be basing myself on this such as release schedule, success of previous entries, popular demand, market niche and internal interest at Nintendo. However, keep in mind two things. One: Nintendo owns a shit-ton of IPs, and I won’t cover them all. I’ll focus on the ones that have multiple entries, and even then, I might skip a few if I feel I have no meaningful insight. And two: No matter what I or anyone else says, the chances for any of these games to come back is NOT ZERO. Nintendo is unpredictable and they’ll sometimes bring something out of the blue when you least expect it. This year alone we saw the return of Brain Age (a franchise not seen since 2012), Clubhouse Games (a sequel to a game from 2005), and Famicom Detective Club, a franchise with two games from 1988/89, which then received a remake in 1998 and then nothing until twenty two years later. Granted, it’s another remake, but it is still a modern installment in a franchise twenty two years dormant. If Famicom Detective Club can come back in 2020, so can your favorite franchise. Now, let’s begin, in alphabetical order: Art Academy Starting off with a small one. Art Academy is a series of drawing games that started on the DS in 2010 and then released pretty consistently over the following years, with three entries on 3DS and two (well, one and a half) for the WiiU between 2010 and 2016. Already this feels like a franchise with a pretty consistent release schedule, even though it hasn’t been seen for four years now. I don’t think any of the games were blockbusters, per se, but they also don’t need to be. They’re small games, probably inexpensive to produce that seem to do consistently well enough to get new sequels. There are several obstacles that present themselves to the release of a new Art Academy, but I think all of them are easily overcome. For starters, AA is the type of casual game that thrived during the DS/Wii eras, a Touch Generations game. Since the Switch released, many have noted that Nintendo may want to distance themselves from that era due to the failure of the WiiU, and there may be some truth to that, but I feel like this is starting to change. Again, this year saw the return of both Brain Age and Clubhouse Games, both casual, Touch Generations DS games. I feel like, at the start of the Switch’s life cycle, Nintendo was indeed trying to focus on core gamers, but now that they have secured that core gamer audience, they may be more comfortable releasing more casual fare. Furthermore Art Academy is developed by Headstrong Games, a British developer that doesn’t seem to do much other than AA. However, in 2017, that team was absorbed into its parent studio, Kuju Games. This move, which happened the year after the last AA game released, may have something to do with the franchsie’s MIA status. But, Kuju games is still active, having released a game just last year, and I don’t see why they couldn’t take up the mantle. Finally, some speculated a few years ago that AA was dead due to the Switch not having a stylus but, OH WAIT, Brain Age fixed that too! All in all, even though Art Academy is hardly a hot franchise, there’s very little standing in the way of its return, and little reason to doubt that it will. Chances: Good Chibi-Robo! We may have started on a positive note, but here comes a downer. Chibi-Robo is probably not coming back anytime soon. This cute little robot debuted in his self-titled Game Cube game, developed by Skip Ltd. Like most games by the developer, it was quirky and fun, and not very popular, but had its fans, and Chibi-Robo must have endeared someone at Nintendo, because he kept showing up here and there. He got two DS sequels, though the second one was Japan-only, already a red flag. In 2013, he starred in a 3DS eshop game that was very different from the main games, more of an experimental spin-off, and was not well-received. But the real final nail came in 2015, with Chibi-Robo Zip Lash! The game was announced to be a 2D platformer, and many fans identified the change in genre (from a unique adventure game to one of the most over-saturated genres in Nintendo consoles) as a total sell-out, and they were totally correct! The developers basically admitted that they did it to try and get more players (red flag). Series producer Kensuke Tanabe then said that if the game didn’t sell well, it could be the end of the franchise (RED FLAG). And then, the unfortunate but inevitable happened. Zip Lash was a critical and commercial bomb, and neither the developer nor the franchise has been seen again. Aside from the inevitable Smash Bros mentions, Chibi-Robo has only been seen on that infamous flaming tweet from 2018 (I told you someone at Nintendo really likes them). To make matters worse, there are increasing signs that Skip Ltd may be going under So, a struggling franchise makes a desperate move to gain fans, a developer expresses concerns for its future if the game bombs, said game bombs and now the developer may be going out of business? It seems the writing is on the wall. Now, even if Skip goes under, that is not necessarily the end of Chibi. Nintendo would still retain the rights, as they did for Trace Memory and Hotel Dusk after developer Cing went under. As for whether or not Nintendo would want to give the franchise a second (third? Fourth?) chance, it doesn’t look good Chances: Very bad Custom Robo From one diminutive robot to another, the Custom Robo series is and robo-battle series that began on the N64. It was Japan only, as was its N64 and GBA sequels. Afterwards, Nintendo did try to expand it, releasing a GameCube game in NA, and a DS game in NA and Europe. However, despite the fact that players of these games will attest to how good these games are, they didn’t seem to do very well, and the franchise has not been seen since 2007. There was one statement of internal interest, when a developer in 2014 said that he heard demands both inside and outside the company for a new entry, but that there were no plans for one, and he was unsure when there would be. Six years on, it seems there still aren’t. In fact, the developer itself, Noise, is also strangely MIA. Though they are officially still active, with their website being updated for 2020, they have not worked on a game since 2015. Then, in 2018, many fans watched in horror the news that Nintendo let the trademark expire. Some have pointed out that this isn’t as bad as it seems, as it refers specifically to games on optical discs, which Nintendo doesn’t make anymore, but I don’t know enough about the subject to say for certain. Regardless, it’s evident that Nintendo still owns the franchise, as Custom Robo content appears in Smash Ultimate. On the other hand, one of the series creators, Kohji Kendoh, is still thinking about it. He is working for another developer, and released a suspiciously similar game called Synaptic Drive just this year, as well as talking about Custom Robo in social media. It seems like a Mighty no9/ Yooka-Laylee/Bloodstained situation, in which the owner of an Ip is not using it, so the creator releases a spiritual successor. Bottom line, there seems to be demand for Custom Robo. A developer saw it six years ago, and the creator is seeing it now. Whether or not thinks this demand is enough to revive the franchise, is tough to say, but doesn’t look great. Not as bad as Chibi-Robo, though Chances: Bad Daigasso! Band Brothers Here’s a franchise Americans never got. Daigasso! Band Brother is a rhythm game released for the DS in 2004 and stars Barbara the Bat, who has an uncharacteristically risqué design for Nintendo. The game was Japan-only but seems to have been successful, it received a sequel in 2009 (released in Europe, but not NA), and another in 2013 for the 3DS. Despite not having received new games since then, the series is far from inactive. Barbara the Bat in particular, like Chibi-Robo, seems to have fans inside Nintendo because she pops up everywhere. She had cameos in a few other DS games, she was an AT in Brawl and a spirit in Ultimate, she was a costume in Mario Maker, she appeared in a comic strip with WarioWare’s Ashley, and the series has a Twitter account that was super active all the way up to April of this year (more on that later). In 2017, that account even tweeted a comic strip of Barbara demanding a Switch. That was probably not a tease of anything, as it’s been 3 years and nothing, but stuff has happened with the franchise even more recently. Last year, in 2019, six years after the release of the 3DS game, there were 30 songs added to the game in celebration of the series 15th anniversary. So as late as last year, Nintendo was celebrating this franchise with an in-game event. Now, the servers for the game were shut down earlier this year (hence the end of the Twitter account), and the game was removed from the eshop (as it is basically pointless without the servers), but with recent news that the 3DS has ceased production, it’s pretty clear that the game’s end is a consequence of the 3DS’ end, and not a lack of players. So if the series is alive, but can’t be on the 3DS, it has to go somewhere, no? Bottom line: the games are successful, the series is active, and the character is popular. I don’t know if Barbara the Bat’s next tour will be an international one, but I’m confident it will happen Chances: Very Good Dillon’s Rolling Western DRW is a unique western-themed tower defense game released on the 3DS eshop in 2012. It received mixed reviews, but had a dedicated fanbase, and was successful enough to spawn two sequels, one in 2013, and a post-apocalyptic themed one in 2018. With a game having released just two years ago, its reasonable to say the series is not dormant, so the prospect of a new game is always likely. The developer, Vanpool, who mostly works on smaller scale stuff like this, is both still active and still working at Nintendo. So, really the only reason to believe the series wouldn’t continue would be if the latest game bombed really hard. It’s hard to say that it did, as sales figures are unavailable, but it was a 3DS game in 2018, probably didn’t set the charts on fire. But then again, unless Nintendo had some really unrealistically high expectations, I don’t think it could have bombed hard enough to kill the franchise that fast. There’s not much more to say. There aren’t any rumblings of a return, but also no reason to be pessimistic. Chance: Above Average Earthbound Let’s make one thing perfectly clear: There will not be a Mother 4 The Creator of the series, Shigesato Itoi, has said that he would not work on a fourth installment, as he feels the story is complete. Now, normally, Nintendo could just say “screw creative integrity, let’s make a fourth game anyway!” but Shigesato Itoi directly co-owns the series’ copyright so they actually can’t. So unless Itoi changes his mind, or he dies and Nintendo decides to ignore his wishes (neither scenario is completely outside the realm of possibility), Mother 4 is not happening. So, if new Mother content is made, it’d be either a remake, or Mother 3 localization. We all know demand for this last one is overwhelming, Nintendo themselves have acknowledged it multiple times, but it still hasn’t happened, and it doesn’t seem things have changed. A remake is possible, but don’t hold your breath for it. Despite the series’ popularity, I think all we’ll see of it is the first two games in NSO. Chances: Bad Excitebike This is a hard one to pinpoint. Excitebike is one of those classic NES games that Nintendo likes to reference all the time, like Ice Climber, Balloon Fight, Wrecking Crew and Duck Hunt. Unlike those, Excitebike actually received sequels and established a franchised. There was a great entry on the N64 and three entries on the Wii, but nothing more since. I can’t imagine the Wii entries were super successful, and there really hasn’t been any word from Nintendo about any interest in reviving the series, either from developers, or the fans. The developer of the Wii games, Monster Games, is still active, and still makes racing games and extreme sports games, but hasn’t worked with Nintendo in 5 years. Now, one point I see often, and that I’d like to address, is the idea that Nintendo doesn’t want multiple games from the same genre on the same console. I can’t agree. With the exception of the WiiU, every Nintendo home console since the SNES has had multiple Nintendo-published racing games released for it. WiiU didn’t but that console is an exception to many norms. I don’t see why Mario Kart, behemoth that it is, would stop any other racing game from being made, especially when they are so very different (although the fact that MK8 has an Excitebike track doesn’t inspire confidence). No, I don’t think Mario Kart is the problem, I think is just lack of interest. And though Excitebike is not a franchise Nintendo will ever truly forget, it’s not really revving up for a comeback either. It could happen, it could not Chances: Medium Fatal Frame This horror franchise wasn’t originally a Nintendo product, being released on the PS2 by Tecmo. However, since the fourth game, each title in the series has been published and copyrighted by Nintendo, and this seemingly applies to all future entries, as the series producer said the series’ future is up to Nintendo. So, how does that future look like? Well, the last game in the series, Maiden of Black Water, was a WiiU game, which means it didn’t sell well, but not as badly as you might think. From all I could find, which is admittedly not much, sales for the game seemed to be only slightly less than previous entries, a gap more than explainable by its console. So, if the series was getting sequels before, the WiiU game’s sales wouldn’t be the reason why there wouldn’t be more. And though Nintendo of America has had to take baby steps into accepting the franchise overseas, Nintendo of Japan seemed satisfied with it, releasing four games between 2008 and 2014. So sales aren’t an evident problem, what about the developer? That developer is Tecmo Koei, who is not only active and buddies with Nintendo, their current project is none other than Nintendo’s big holiday title. There’s obvious trust there. As for interest, there is a lot. From Koei Tecmo calling it a valuable IP, to the series producer stating multiple times, including this year, that he’d like to bring it to the Switch Now, this comment pretty much confirms that a new Fatal Frame is not in development as of now, but it has a chance of happening. And remember, the last game is on WiiU, and if we know anything about those, is that they like to come to Switch. And though I don’t see Nintendo breaking their necks to make a new entry, I don’t think they’d oppose it if Tecmo pitches it to them, especially if it’s just a port. Chances: Good Fossil Fighters This game is not Pokémon, or so its fans tell me. Fossil Fighters is a DS game from 2008 where you collect various species of dinosaur and battle with other ~Dinosaur Trainers~ Fossil Fighters in RPG battles. It didn’t receive great reviews, but was successful enough to get a sequel two years later, and another one on the 3DS in 2014. Three games in six years is a pretty good release schedule, and things were looking alright, until that 3DS game came. It was primarily developed by a different studio, and it showed. The game received abysmal reviews, and fan reception was similar. Sales weren’t awful, but not great either. Since then, the series has been completely quiet. The developer, Red Entertainment, is still active, but hasn’t worked with Nintendo since the 3DS game. As for interest, there hasn’t been a peep from Nintendo about this series at all. No interviews describing vague interest in bringing it bad, no acknowledgment of fan demand, no cameos in other games (aside from Smash, which doesn’t count, Smash has everything). Even fan demand doesn’t seem too high, most of what I’ve seen is a Change.org petition which has been up for a year and has not reached its 2500 signatures goal. It looks like this series could become a fossil itself. Someday some might dig it up and revive it to use in battle, but I’m not feeling it. Still not as bad as Chibi-Robo Chances: Bad F-Zero This is the reason you’re reading this. Oh, F-Zero. If fan demand alone was the deciding factor, F-Zero would be top priority. People want F-Zero, people beg for F-zero, people who have never played, beg for F-Zero. And Nintendo knows this, they’ve acknowledged it. They themselves haven’t forgotten it. Even putting Smash aside, there was an F-Zero minigame in Nintendo Land. There are F-Zero tracks in Mario Kart. They’ve done everything but make a new F-Zero game, but why the hell not? Well, it’s important to understand that the F-Zero series declined in sales throughout its life. The best-selling game is still the first, and though the following games were fantastic, they sold less and less, and yet, strangely enough, between 2003-2004, Nintendo released THREE F-Zero games. Around the same time, they also released an anime. There are several great articles and videos about what happened to F-Zero, but the best point I’ve seen is that Nintendo tried, in 2003, to really push F-Zero, but it didn’t work. So, with their attempt failed, they let the series sleep, and just never woke it up, even as fan demand increased. In 2015, Miyamoto commented on the series, and said that, though he heard the demand, he was unsure on what to do with the series, on how to make a new game. Many fans scoffed and said he’d just need to make a modern F-Zero and that’d be great, but I think internal concern runs deeper. Just doing F-Zero failed in 2003, so why would it work now? That said, I think there is hope. Fan demand is powerful, and more and more we see a new generation of Nintendo developers pushing the company forward. These younger developers are the ones behind new IP like Splatoon and ARMS, and great reinventions of existing ones like Odyssey and BotW. It’s possible that these same younger developers could hear the fan demand, and want to take on the series without the hesitation of their older peers. It’s been 16 years, but Kid Icarus was gone for 19, wasn’t it? Stranger things have happened Chances: I want to believe Golden Sun And here’s the other one. Few Nintendo fans are as vocal and dedicated to their dormant franchise as Golden Sun games. For those who don’t know, Golden Sun was a couple of excellent GBA RPGs released in 2001 and 2002, with a DS sequel in 2010. Such erratic release schedule would make predicting the series’ future difficult at the best of times, but the DS game was seen as a disappointment by many fans and sales were unimpressive. With ten years having passed with no new game, is the series done for? Well, let’s look at it. In 2012, one of the developers gave an interview in which he straight up said that, if there was fan demand for it, there would “naturally” be a fourth game. We know that developer interview doesn’t immediately guarantee a sequel, but this is also a much more positive statement than Custom Robo and F-Zero’s “We know there’s demand, but we don’t know what to do with it”. This is “If there’s demand, it will happen.” So, is there demand? You bet your ass there is. And it feels like it is growing. There was a high-profile hoax about a fourth game in 2017 (a similar hoax happened some time before the third game, by the way). The series received notably more content in Smash Ultimate than series of similar standing (quite possibly an acknowledgment of its popularity). And last year, Cory Balrog, director of 2018’s GOTY God of War, tweeted about all the franchises he would trade for a new Golden Sun. Nintendo could hardly have asked for a higher profile endorsement within the industry. So if fan demand is there, why hasn’t it happened yet? Well, it helps to look at the development history of the series. The first game took eighteen months to develop, considered a long time for a handheld game at the time. And though the eight years between the GBA and DS games may have you believe it took a long time to greenlight a sequel, that’s not the case. Signs point to internal discussion about a sequel to the GBA games as early as 2002, with developers quoted as saying that Nintendo was asking them to make a new one. One of the series producers also said that the series takes a long time to make because of its complexity. After the DS game failed to meet expectations, its understandable that Nintendo may not have been as enthusiastic for a new game as it was before, but it seems like, even if the series is alive and well, the long hiatus would not be uncharacteristic. In that same interview quoted before, the developer even said that a new game would take a long time. In fact, if GS4 had started development shortly after that interview, if it took as long as Dark Dawn, the game would be wrapping up production around now. Then there’s the developer, Camelot. Aside from Golden Sun, they pretty much only make Mario Tennis and Mario Golf. They release schedule is also super consistent, with a new game every other year, sometimes every year. We already got a Mario Tennis on Switch two years ago so, if not for COVID, their new game would probably have released this year. All things point, then, for the next Camelot game to hit the Switch next year. Smart money would be in Mario Golf, but maybe it is finally Golden Sun. Finally, I don’t think, as others do, that Xenoblade is the reason GS is not happening. Again, I don’t see evidence to support the idea that Nintendo doesn’t want to publish more than one game in the same genre. Both the GBA and DS had more than a dozen Nintendo-published RPGs, and the Wii and 3DS got RPGs even after Xenoblade released for them. I don’t see why Xenoblade would stop a Switch Golden Sun, especially when they are very different kinds of RPGs. GS is actually closer to Octopath Traveler, whose success was enough to impress SE, why wouldn’t Nintendo want a piece? Really, I think the biggest obstacle is that Nintendo might want to prioritize the safe investment of Mario sports games over Golden Sun, but the more I research, the more I feel like GS’s chances are higher now than they were at any point in the last ten years. I feel there’s hope this sun will rise again Chances: Above average Kid Icarus Sorry to keep you waiting. Kid Icarus was an OK NES game that had a forgotten Game Boy sequel and then nobody cared about it for 19 years until it was unexpectedly revived for the 3DS in 2012. This story is a testament to the fact that, just because its been a long time, it doesn’t mean it will never happen. But in order to know if it will happen again, let’s understand how it happened in the first place. It’s important to mention that reviving Kid Icarus was not the intent behind KI: Uprising, it was the idea of its director, Masahiro Sakurai. Nintendo had given him a project and Sakurai decided to use an established franchise for it. He briefly considered Star Fox, but decided to use Kid Icarus, for which he probably had a soft spot, considering he had added Pit to Brawl some years earlier. So, there wasn’t an exec at Nintendo who woke up one day and decided to bring Kid Icarus back, they gave the director a project, and, after some deliberation, he decided to use Kid Icarus for it. That director is currently busy developing Smash Bros DLC, but even after that’s over, he probably won’t revisit Kid Icarus. He has shot down the idea of him working on a sequel or a port. His words were: "For now, my thought is that perhaps we'll see someone else besides me make another Kid Icarus in another 25 years." Yikes. That’s pretty damning. Sure, Nintendo could get someone else to make the game, but if it was only Sakurai that was interested in the series in the first place, what is the hope of that? Well, that statement is not super accurate. Before Uprising, there was actually a Kid Icarus reboot in development for the Wii. It was cancelled, and thank God for it, as it was an awfully stupid gritty reboot, but it showed that there was interest in the franchise even before Uprising. Naturally, you’d expect interest to be bigger now than before. The fact that Uprising not only grew the series’ fanbase, but the that there are Kid Icarus characters in Smash Bros, means that the franchise has a permanent place in the interest in Nintendo fans. Smash in particular means that there are 18 million people who know Pit and Palutena and would turn their heads if a new game was announced. Furthermore, Nintendo’s new CEO is interested in bringing 3DS franchises to the Switch after the success of the Switch Lite, especially now that the 3DS is officially dead, so the opening is there for it. There is definitely demand for a new Kid Icarus game, but it is too sporadic a franchise to be certain, and if it were to happen, Nintendo would have to find someone new to do it. But, in the end, the series is definitely in a better place now than it was 10 years ago. Chances: Medium Legendary Starfy Legendary Starfy was a 2D platformer for the GBA that was apparently really successful, as it received four sequels in the span of five years. Not only that but, like Barbara and Chibi-Robo, Starfy himself was quite popular. He had cameos in Mario & Luigi and Super Princess Peach, music of the series was in Donkey Konga, he is a regular Assist Trophy in Smash and was a costume in Mario Maker. Though the series took until the last game to come to the West, there were plans to bring the first four games too, as well as consideration for expanding the series to the Wii. The series was widely advertised, with animated commercials and tons of merchandise, including plush dolls, CDs, pencils, birthday balloons, casino cards and two manga series. When asked if there were plans for a sixth game, the developer answered “Yes!”, no ifs, not buts, straight-up Yes. And then… nothing. The series just stopped. And the reason why is: I have no idea. Maybe if the last game bombed spectacularly, but it doesn’t seem to be the case. Sure, Japanese sales declined with each entry, but not by that much. Maybe NA sales weren’t what Nintendo was hoping for, but surely not enough to kill such a steady franchise. The confusion only grows when we look at its developer, Tose. Now, this is interesting. You’ve probably played a Tose game without knowing. They have worked on over A THOUSAND GAMES, but they never receive credit. They merely assist with development in the shadows. As one exec puts it: "Our policy is not to have a vision. Instead, we follow our customers' visions. Most of the time we refuse to put our name on the games, not even staff names." They are a ghost developer. Even its Wikipedia page admits that the list of games on it is purely speculative. There are probably hundreds more, that we don’t know about. The only exception is the Starfy series. That series was their vision. So why did they stop? Could they have decided that it was against their vision to make a game of their vision? We can only speculate. The fact that the series’ end was so unexpected, and its developer so mysterious, means that any speculation about it is a shot in the dark. All I can say is that there’s no particular reason to expect it. Chances: Not Good Nintendogs Here’s a big one. Nintendogs was one of the biggest successes of the casual era, on par with Brain Age and Wii Fit, but unlike those, it remained a multi-million seller during the 3DS/WiiU generation. And though Nintendo may have tried, at first, to distance the Switch from that era, the return of Brain Age and Clubhouse Games indicates that other casual games would follow, and Nintendogs would be a no-brainer. There is, however, one big problem: the Switch does not have a microphone. While Brain Age on the DS also used the microphone a lot, it was not essential to it. You could easily make Brain Age without it. But not Nintendogs. Issuing voice commands to your virtual pup is integral to the experience. No microphone means no Nintendogs. But with that said, Nintendo did go to the trouble of making a Switch stylus, seemingly just for Brain Age, so maybe they could make a microphone peripheral. Sure, a microphone would be more complex to make than a stylus, but not inconceivable. They did something like that with the Wii Speak. I’m sure for that nintendogs money, Nintendo would do it. Worst case scenario, Nintendo releases Nintendogs and forces you to use the NSO app’s voice chat to talk with your dog. You know they’d do it. There’s also the fact that another developer released a nintendogs clone for the Switch last year, but I don’t think Nintendo gives a shit. Chances: Good Nintendo Wars You may know this series better as “Advance Wars” and you may also know that it is fantastic. In fact, it is one of the highest rated Nintendo franchises on Metacritic, and had a pretty consistent release schedule between 1988 and 2008. All was looking pretty god. But unfortunately the series has been dormant since the last entry on DS. Part of it may be because the series, though originally Japan-only, was never all that popular in Japan. In fact, that last game only saw a limited release as a My Nintendo reward in the region. There is, however, still demand for the series, both externally and internally. Producers from both Nintendo and developer Intelligent Systems have expressed enthusiastic support for a new entry, although they’ve also expressed some uncertainty on what they’d do with it, similar to the Custom Robo and F-Zero responses. The developer for the series is Intelligent Systems, who do a ton of stuff and will be discussed multiple times in this post. They used to release multiple games a year, but have slowed down this past game to just one or two games a year, another possible reason why Advance Wars has been deprioritized, especially in comparison with that boogeyman of Advance Wars and Smash Bros fans alike: Fire Emblem. There is real concern that Nintendo might not want to make a new Advance Wars when they could just make the similar but more popular Fire Emblem instead. That said, IS has already released a Fire Emblem and Paper Mario for Switch, and though we definitely will get at least one more FE during the Switch’s life cycle, there’s enough years left for IS to release some other games, whether they be AW or one of the three other franchises we’ll discuss in the future. Problem is, of those franchises, AW might be the most difficult to produce, and the most risky, so it could probably be lower priority. When asked about the series last year, one IS producer gave a pretty evasive answer, so things aren’t looking too good, but they aren’t hopeless either. Chances: Medium Ouendan/Elite Beat Agents This rhythm series for the DS is widely beloved by those who played it, but its life cycle was pretty limited. One game in 2005, and Americanized version in 2006, and one sequel in 2007. Nothing more since The games were critically acclaimed, but not blockbuster hits. The series creator said back in 2016 that he would love to create a new game, but nothing else has been said about it. The game’s developer iNis, doesn’t appear to be super active either. All in all, there is very little pointing to a return Chances: Bad Pilotwings The biggest obstacle to seeing this series of arcadey flight sims on the Switch is that the series has a very specific purpose: it’s a tech demo. All three games were launch titles for their systems and explicitly meant to show off each system’s new tech. The original game was made to show off the SNES’ Mode 7, the N64 game was meant to show off the console’s polygonal graphics, and Resort was meant to showcase the 3DS’ stereoscopic 3D. With the Switch’s release far behind us, and its graphics not really needing a showcase, Pilotwings chances seem low. Granted, Pilotwings doesn’t need to be a tech demo, but it could be how Nintendo views it as. There is some fan demand for it, but not as much as F-Zero or Golden Sun, and no developer has commented on the possibility of a return. Pilotwings has always been moderately successful, but not enough to justify constant releases. The only glimmer of hope is the comment from Nintendo’s CEO about wanting to bring more 3DS franchises for the Switch, but it’s quite possible that he didn’t have Pilotwings in mind when he said that Chances: Bad Punch-Out!! Another series popular enough to get a Smash character but not popular enough for consistent sequels, Punch-Out is a beloved classic with a consistent fanbase, but with a very erratic release schedule. After the SNES game in 1994, the series lay dormant for 15 years until it was revived for the Wii in 2009 and then laid to rest again. One explanation is that the series was never really popular in Japan. Neither the NES or SNES games were even available as full releases in the country, being instead, distributed as prizes or rewards. And though the Wii game got a full retail release, it sold very poorly. It’s always been a game more for Americans, so it is understandable that the Japanese developers at Nintendo aren’t super enthusiastic about it. That said, it was Nintendo who pitched the reboot in the first place, so they may want to do it again someday. The developer for the Wii game was Next Level Games, who release a game every three or two years, and they also develop Mario Strikers and Luigi’s Mansion. Having already released LM3, it’s likely they’ll release another game for the Switch some time soon. That could be Punch-Out, but it is just as likely that it could be Mario Strikers, or something else entirely. Some think that the series use of flagrant national stereotypes would impede it from coming back in today’s political climate, but frankly, I don’t think that’s as definitive a problem. Worst case scenario, they simply make a new cast, just like Super Punch Out, but less racially insensitive. Another interesting development is that Mike Tyson has been talking about wanting a new Punch-Out this year. I don’t think Nintendo cares what he says, and they definitely don’t want to associate with him again, but it is a pretty high-profile person talking about the series, which is bound to raise interest. Whether that’s enough for Nintendo to consider a new game? I don’t think so. But regardless, Punch-Out is popular enough that the door is never truly closed for it. Chances: Not Good Pushmo This acclaimed puzzle game was released for the 3DS eshop in 2012 and was successful enough to get three sequels. Although it hasn’t been seen since 2015, there doesn’t seem to be anything impeding its return. The developer is our good friend Intelligent Systems, and, of the aforementioned IS franchises still to launch on the Switch, Pushmo, being a simple, but beloved, puzzle game, seems like the safest investment. It likely could be developed alongside another major game. There is demand for it, and considering Nintendo’s eshop efforts, Pushmo would fit in perfectly alongside Snipperclips and fellow 3DS eshop puzzle star Boxboy. All in all, there’s no reason not to expect Pushmo to come back. Chances: Good continued in comments
“About 24 hours after arriving from Moscow, a private jet regularly used by the head [German Gref “co-chair of Putin’s A.I. board”†] of Russia's largest state-run bank remained at an airport just a short drive from where Donald Trump is vacationing.” – Inquisitr (2020)
Inquisitr—Mystery Deepens Over Why Kremlin Bank CEO’s Plane Remains In Florida, 50 Miles From Donald Trump’s Mar-A-Lago (1/5/2020) “Almost 24 hours after landing at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) in Florida early on Saturday morning, as The Inquisitr reported, a private jet frequently used by the CEO of Russia’s largest state-owned-bank remained on the ground there—about 50 miles south of Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach where Donald Trump is vacationing until Sunday afternoon. Whether Sberbank CEO German Gref† was aboard the plane when it arrived on a 12-hour, 23-minute nonstop flight from Moscow remains unconfirmed. Russian media has reported that the plane, a Gulfstream G650 operated by Jet Air Group with the tail number RA-10204, is used frequently and perhaps exclusively by Gref. (UPDATE: According to flight records posted by the site FlightAware, the Sberbank jet departed Fort Lauderdale at 12:23 a.m. EST on Sunday morning, just 21 hours and 34 minutes after it arrived from Moscow—where it landed on the return trip at 6:17 p.m. local time, or 10:17 a.m. EST, a nine-hour, 53 minute flight.) Flight records posted to Twitter show that the plane made the same nonstop flight from Moscow to Fort Lauderdale last year, on the same dates. On January 4, 2019, the plane landed in Fort Lauderdale at 2:49 a.m., according to the records. In 2020, the plane arrived at the same airport on the same date, landing at 2:31 a.m. Last year, however, Trump did not spend his holiday break at his Mar-a-Lago Club, remaining in the White House during what was then an ongoing government shutdown. On January 4,Trump was indeed present at Mar-a-Lago but left the estate at 9:55 a.m.—six hours and 24 minutes after the Sberbank jet touched down—to visit Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach. He remained at the golf club until 3:12 p.m., according to a public schedule posted by FactBase. Sberbank has been under United States economic sanctions since 2014, over its involvement in Russia’s annexation of the territory of Crimea from Ukraine. In November 2013, however, Gref himself co-hosted a party honoring Trump in Moscow, during Trump’s visit there for the Miss Universe beauty pageant, according to a report by The Daily Beast. Trump was then the owner of the pageant. Following Trump’s return to the United States following the 2013 event, he received a mysterious ‘gift’ from Russian President Vladimir Putin. The gift was reportedly ‘a black lacquered box’, but the contents of the box have never been publicly revealed. Like the contents of the ‘gift’ from Putin to Trump, the purpose of the Sberbank private jet’s trip to Florida from Moscow is also a mystery, even as the plan sits on the tarmac at Fort Lauderdale airport as of 1:30 a.m. EST on Sunday. According to the online flight records from 2019, the Gulfstream private jet departed from Fort Lauderdale 30 hours and 11 minutes after landing there, making another nonstop flight back to Sheremetyevo Alexander S. Pushkin International Airport (SVO) in Moscow.” http://web.archive.org/web/20200106153745/https://www.inquisitr.com/5821555/kremlin-bank-ceo-jet-florida-donald-trump †Herman (German) Gref: [“Sberbank, headed by Herman Gref, the other co-chair of Putin’s A.I. board, is also among the banks providing biometric services that feed into the Digital Profile System.” – Claims Journal (2019)] •Vedomosti (Russia)—Sberbank Invested in Facial Recognition Technology (11/17/2017) “Sberbank Recognizes a Customer by Sight: The Bank intends to provide biometric access to any of its services.” http://vedomosti.ru/technology/articles/2017/11/17/742077-raspoznavaniya-lits (http://archive.is/sbLOR) [Translated] •Bloomberg—The Day Trump Came to Moscow: Oligarchs, Miss Universe and Nobu (12/21/2016) “Meeting with top group of Russian financiers, industrialists; They discussed a possible Trump Tower and inspected sites The last time Donald Trump made an appearance in Moscow was November 2013 for the Miss Universe contest he famously owned. It was a glittering event filled with carefully choreographed photographs and parties. Then another, more private, invitation arrived: Come to Nobu to meet more than a dozen of Russia’s top businessmen, including Herman Gref, the chief executive officer of state-controlled Sberbank PJSC, Russia’s biggest bank. Gref, who was President Vladimir Putin’s economy minister from 2000 to 2007, organized the meeting together with Aras Agalarov, the founder of Crocus Group, one of the country’s largest real-estate companies, which was hosting the beauty pageant at one of its concert halls.” http://bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-12-21/the-day-trump-came-to-moscow-oligarchs-miss-universe-and-nobu (http://archive.is/7X1bc) •NBC News—Putin Rival Ties Kushner Meeting to Kremlin Bankers (10/17/2017) “A prominent exiled Russian oligarch said in an exclusive interview with NBC News that he is nearly certain Russian President Vladimir Putin tried to collaborate with the Trump campaign, and that he believes a top Russian banker was not ‘acting on his own behalf’ when he held a controversial meeting with Jared Kushner last December. The pointed remarks come from a longtime Putin rival, Mikhail Khodorkovsky, an oil executive who was Russia's richest man before he was imprisoned and exiled by the Kremlin. ’I am almost convinced that Putin's people have tried to influence the U.S. election in some way’, Khodorkovsky told MSNBC’s Ari Melber in his first U.S. television interview since Trump took office. [...] His former head of human resources, Sergey Gorkov, now runs a Kremlin bank and met with Kushner in December last year. The U.S. has accused Gorkov's bank of providing cover for Russian spies. Khodorkovsky says Gorkov was a ‘fine employee’ who ‘carries out orders’, suggesting the banker would not have been acting alone in meeting with a senior figure of the incoming Trump administration. ‘I have no doubt that he wouldn’t do anything on his own behalf’, Khodorkovsky said. Khodorkovsky also said he believes Gorkov's orders come from either Andrey Kostin or Herman [German] Gref, who both run Kremlin-backed banks that were sanctioned by the Obama administration.” http://web.archive.org/web/20190706131958/https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/white-house/putin-rival-ties-kushner-meeting-kremlin-bankers-n811631[“Hermann Gräf, better known as Herman Gref*, is a Russian politician and businessman. He was the Minister of Economics and Trade of Russia from May 2000 to September 2007. He is the CEO and chairman of the executive board of Sberbank, the largest Russian bank.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herman_Gref] •Fast Company—Russia’s Largest Bank Just Launched a State-Of-The-Art Coding School to Ease Dependence on Western Tech; Sberbank, which is currently under U.S. sanctions and whose CEO [Gref] has ties to Trump, launched School 21 in Moscow last week. (11/30/2018) “The biggest bank in Russia, which has been under U.S. sanctions since 2014, just launched a state-of-the-art coding school in Moscow that aims to train thousands of world-class software engineers in the arts of cybersecurity, gaming, and the latest AI technology for years to come. School 21, which operates under the umbrella of Ecole 42, a global pioneer in IT education backed by French billionaire Xavier Niel, is wholly owned by Sberbank. It is free, open to aspiring coders from 18 to 30 years old, and has 21 levels of proficiency. The school is highly competitive—its inaugural program has a class of 500 students out of more than 85,000 applicants, and the plan is to scale up to 2,500 a year in the long term, according to Business FM radio station. Sberbank told Fast Company that it plans to run two more application cycles next year, one in the winter and one in the spring, and that it might open a second office in St. Petersburg. The school’s launch is raising concerns about Russia training thousands of highly skilled cyber specialists at a time when the United States is expanding its sanctions against Russian entities, including Sberbank-xbacked properties, and amid heightened tensions in Europe last week over a naval skirmish between Russian and Ukraine in the Kerch Strait. It also comes against the backdrop of the Russian government’s disinformation efforts in elections around the globe, which the Kremlin has vehemently denied. In addition, Sberbank has been in the spotlight due to the history of high-level connections between the bank’s leadership, the Russian government and Donald Trump’s associates before he became U.S. president. It was bank chairman Herman Gref who set up Trump’s meeting with Russian businessmen during the Miss Universe pageant in 2013 in Moscow, an event which Sberbank co-sponsored, while Trump was exploring building a Trump Tower in Moscow. Trump’s hotel plans are making headlines again this week due to the plea deal that Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen negotiated with the Mueller probe–Cohen admitted that he lied when he previously claimed that the deal fell through in January 2016, now conceding that talks for a Trump Tower in Moscow continued up until June 2016.’ Russia’s largest bank just launched a state-of-the-art coding school to ease dependence on Western tech; Sberbank, which is currently under U.S. sanctions and whose CEO has ties to Trump, launched School 21 in Moscow last week.” http://web.archive.org/web/20181201002817/https://www.fastcompany.com/90274333/russias-largest-bank-just-launched-a-coding-school-to-ease-dependence-on-western-tech •Claims Journal—Vladimir Putin Wants Everyone to Love the Way He Watches Them (10/22/2019) “Officials in Moscow have spent the last few years methodically assembling one of the most comprehensive video-surveillance operations in the world. The public-private network of as many as 200,000 cameras records 1.5 billion hours of footage a year that can be accessed by 16,000 government employees, intelligence officers and law-enforcement personnel. Now the entire system is about to be equipped with what City Hall is billing as some of the most advanced facial-recognition software outside of China, claiming it will be more accurate and easier to search than London’s older, bigger network. The upgrade will dramatically expand a pilot program that led to the capture of as many as 10 wanted criminals a month either at major public events or inside the city’s warren of 269 metro stations. Moscow’s embrace of the technology, which the West is increasingly curtailing in response to public pressure, is being challenged in courts on political and legal grounds by opponents of President Vladimir Putin. But the monitoring tool is just one of several Russia is deploying, including mandatory recordings of all cellular calls. Many of the initiatives are based on recent advances in artificial intelligence, a science Putin sees as the ticket to global domination for whichever nation masters it first. Putin and lieutenants led by Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin say measures such as geolocating every active in the country, creating ‘digital profiles’ of each adult and collating online complaints against authorities are all necessary to ensure public safety and improve services. They’re betting most voters will accept further privacy curbs like the facial-recognition rollout in exchange for safer streets and greater convenience in their daily lives. ‘We’re conducting experiments in schools, clinics, hospitals and in transport to introduce this technology, which, of course, will facilitate the work of a huge number of people and make these industries more efficient’, Sobyanin told Putin at a meeting on artificial intelligence earlier this year. While so-called authoritarian tech, from automatic people trackers to online censorship bots, has triggered a worldwide debate about the proper balance between governing and surveilling, Moscow has so far made a better case for Big Brother than most cities. Russia’s capital ranks No. 1 among 40 metropolises in the latest UN survey of ‘e-government effectiveness in the delivery of public services’. London, by comparison, is fourth, Shanghai 11th and New York 14th. [...] Sberbank, headed by Herman Gref, the other co-chair of Putin’s A.I. board, is also among the banks providing biometric services that feed into the Digital Profile System. The support of Gref is vital to the success of the program because Sberbank serves as a payment agent for most household bills in addition to safeguarding almost half of the country’s savings. Gref is fond of repeating the mantra ‘big data is the new oil’, but privacy experts say the concentration of so much personal information in a single database will make Russia an ideal target for identity thieves, not unlike Equifax Inc. The U.S. consumer-scorer was breached in 2017, exposing the credit histories of more than 145 million people. (Sberbank itself was the victim of a data leak affecting as many as 60 million clients, Kommersant reported this month. The bank said the incident impacted just 5,000 holders of its credit cards.) Potentially more worrisome in a country routinely accused of harassing the political opposition is that the new database could be a precursor of the kind of ‘social credit’ system China is developing. It’s a name-and-shame way to keep tabs on the behavior of the population by issuing grades, with demerits applied for things like smoking or circulating whatever’s deemed fake news. In 2016, the company launched the FindFace website and application. With the help of it, it was possible to find a person’s profile in VKontakte in a few seconds. The launch of the ‘innovation dating service’, as the company initially positioned it, provoked a series of scandals—users deanonimized not only fellow travelers in the subway, but porn actresses and rally participants, the technology was used even by the Bellingcat investigation team. And then they told about the application in the ‘Wait for me’ program on Channel One, and NtechLab, as Kabakov said, began to receive ‘five offers of cooperation per day’. Now the founders explain that FindFace was just a showcase that helped pitch technology. For example, with help from FindFace German [Herman] Gref† deanonimized his secretary within one second after being introduced to the algorithm, according to someone familiar with the head of Sberbank. But in 2018 both the site and the FindFace application were unexpectedly closed. This had to be done because of possible complaints, including from VKontakte, says one of the interlocutors of The Bell. Spending time and money on the courts did not make sense; the founders of NtechLab already understood that they would not make money on recognizing pretty girls.” http://web.archive.org/web/20191024034256/https://www.claimsjournal.com/news/international/2019/10/22/293704.htm •The Moscow Times—Russia To Grant Police Access to Bank Customers’ Biometric Data (12/19/2017) “Russia’s police and intelligence services will gain access to bank customers’ biometric data without their consent under new legislation making its way through the State Duma. Russia’s Communications Ministry and the Central Bank are overseeing a pilot project that will use personal biometric data to remotely verify bank account applications by late 2018. The Rostelecom state telecoms provider will operate the project, despite widespread concerns over state surveillance, data storage and privacy rights. A state deputy co-authoring the bill was cited as saying that ‘law enforcement officers will not have unlimited access to the system’ and that data would only be provided after official requests, the Vedomosti business daily reported Tuesday. According to the draft bill, Rostelecom would be required to share bank customers’ biometric data without their consent with Russia’s Interior Ministry and Federal Security Service (FSB). The data collected will include facial images and voice recordings, and may be expanded to iris recognition, palm and fingerprint scanning, according to Rostelecom. ‘If a person is law abiding then they will have no reason to worry’, Elman Mekhtiev, the vice-president of the Russian Association of Banks, was cited as saying by Vedomosti.” http://web.archive.org/web/20191121205917/https://www.themoscowtimes.com/2017/12/19/russia-to-grant-police-access-to-bank-customers-biometric-data-a59987 •The Moscow Times—Moscow Arrests 42 Suspects Using New Facial Recognition Technology in Metro Stations (5/24/2018) “A pilot project implementing facial recognition technology in Moscow has reportedly led to the arrests of 42 suspects in a month. Moscow has ramped up video surveillance ahead of the FIFA World Cup that kicks off in three weeks, including with facial recognition capabilities at metro stations capable of identifying 20 faces per second. Around 50,000 photographs of wanted suspects have been uploaded into the Moscow metro system, the state-owned Sberbank vice president Stanislav Kuznetsov told the state-run RIA Novosti news agency Thursday. ‘As a result, 42 repeat offenders were detained at four metro stations in a month,’ Kuznetsov was quoted as saying. He said Sberbank CEO German Gref plans to discuss expanding the facial-recognition system beyond four metro stations with Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin at the annual economic forum underway in St. Petersburg. Sberbank acquired a stake in the VisionLabs facial recognition company last fall to create a ‘unique biometric identifier’ involving face, voice and retina identification.” http://themoscowtimes.com/news/moscow-arrests-42-suspects-using-new-facial-recognition-technology-in-metro-stations-61567 (http://archive.is/qU8WU) •The Bell (Russia)—The Russian Elite is Jostling to Solve Putin’s “2024 Problem” (7/20/2019) “This week we look at how a senior official wants President Vladimir Putin stay in power after his current term ends in 2024. We also explain why protests over the exclusion of independent candidates from local elections is a sign of a system under strain, and how Moscow is set to roll-out one of the world’s biggest face recognition systems. The Russian elite is jostling to solve Putin’s ‘2024 problem’ The speaker of Russia’s lower house of parliament, Vyacheslav Volodin, this week publicly offered a solution to Putin’s ‘2024 problem’—what to do about the constitutional limit on two consecutive presidential terms. Volodin, who was previously oversaw domestic politics in the Kremlin, published an article (Rus) in the State Duma’s official magazine laying out his idea for changing the constitution to give parliament more authority. [...] Why the world should care: The Russian elite is increasingly obsessed with the ‘2024 problem’, and jostling within the elite is already well underway. At present, a variation of Volodin’s plan seems the most likely outcome. [...] Protests over Moscow’s local elections highlight cracks in the system: If the Kremlin wants to keep Putin in power beyond 2024, it will have to improve the functioning of its political management machine. Anger this week over local elections in the capital revealed how the system is faltering: the authorities’ ineptitude turned the vote—in which no one was interested—into a trigger for repeated demonstrations† in downtown Moscow. [...] Why the world should care: The Kremlin’s political management machine is coping less well with each passing election, and their failure in Moscow significant—in a crisis, the country’s fate will be decided in the capital. This is a bad sign ahead of the 2021 Duma elections, and a blow to Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin, whose name appears in discussions of presidential candidates in 2024. Moscow is set to install a state-of-the-art face recognition system: While paranoid internet users across the world call for a boycott of FaceApp, the Russian app that generates an image of an elderly you, Moscow City Hall is building the world’s largest face recognition system. Sberbank, Russia’s largest bank, will take part in development and has already collected the biometrical data of tens of millions of Russians. - Moscow City Hall announced a tender this year for 105,000 video cameras with face recognition software. As of now, only 1,500 have been installed, but the police have already used them to identify and arrest about 100 criminals. According to The Bell’s calculations, the new system will cost no less than $50 million, a price tag that the city can easily afford. - There are three main bidders: Ntechlab, which was founded by people close to the Presidential Administration and two companies in which Sberbank is a shareholder: Speech Technology Center and VisionLabs. - Market sources say that Moscow’s face recognition system, once rolled out, will only be comparable in size with systems already in place in China. - Sberbank looks well placed to provide the raw data to make the system work. Since last year, the bank has been collecting biometric data from its clients (93 million people), and in December, CEO German [Herman] Gref said they already have data from ‘millions of people’. Why the World Should Care: Concentrating resources could mean Russia becomes the world’s number two player in face recognition systems. Remember this when you visit Moscow, walk the city’s streets and see the mounted cameras on every building.” http://web.archive.org/web/20190801101206/http://thebell.io/en/the-russian-elite-is-jostling-to-solve-putin-s-2024-problem [“A more advanced operation could use the full suite of services utilized by companies to track political attitudes on social media across all congressional districts, analyze who is most likely to vote and where, and then launch, almost instantly, a customized campaign at a highly localized level to discourage voting in the most vulnerable districts. Such a campaign, due to its highly personalized structure, would likely have significant impact on voting behavior.” – Brookings Institution (2008)] •Brookings Institution—Weapons of the Weak: Russia and AI-driven Asymmetric Warfare (2018) “‘Artificial intelligence is the future, not only for Russia, but for all humankind. It comes with colossal opportunities, but also threats that are difficult to predict. Whoever becomes the leader in this sphere will become the ruler of the world.’ – Russian President Vladimir Putin, 2017 Speaking to Russian students on the first day of the school year in September 2017, Putin squarely positioned Russia in the technological arms race for artificial intelligence (AI). Putin’s comment signaled that, like China and the United States, Russia sees itself engaged in direct geopolitical competition with the world’s great powers, and AI is the currency that Russia is betting on. [...] Currently, Moscow is pursuing investments in at least two directions: select conventional military and defense technologies where the Kremlin believes it can still hold comparative advantage over the West and high-impact, low-cost asymmetric warfare to correct the imbalance between Russia and the West in the conventional domain. The former—Russia’s development and use of AI-driven military technologies and weapons—has received significant attention. AI has the potential to hyperpower Russia’s use of disinformation... And unlike in the conventional military space, the United States and Europe are ill-equipped to respond to AI-driven asymmetric warfare in the information space. The latter—the implications of AI for asymmetric political warfare—remains unexplored. Yet, such nonconventional tools—cyber-attacks, disinformation campaigns, political influence, and illicit finance—have become a central tenet of Russia’s strategy toward the West and one with which Russia has been able to project power and influence beyond its immediate neighborhood. In particular, AI has the potential to hyperpower Russia’s use of disinformation—the intentional spread of false and misleading information for the purpose of influencing politics and societies. And unlike in the conventional military space, the United States and Europe are ill-equipped to respond to AI-driven asymmetric warfare (ADAW) in the information space. Russian Information Warfare at Home and Abroad: Putin came to power in 2000, and since then, information control and manipulation has become a key element of the Kremlin’s domestic and foreign policy. At home, this has meant repression of independent media and civil society, state control of traditional and digital media, and deepening government surveillance. For example, Russia’s surveillance system, SORM (System of Operative-Search Measures) allows the FSB (Federal Security Service) and other government agencies to monitor and remotely access ISP servers and communications without the ISPs’ knowledge. In 2016, a new package of laws, the so-called Yarovaya amendments, required telecom providers, social media platforms, and messaging services to store user data for three years and allow the FSB access to users’ metadata and encrypted communications. While there is little known information on how Russian intelligence agencies are using these data, their very collection suggests that the Kremlin is experimenting with AI-driven analysis to identify potential political dissenters. The government is also experimenting with facial recognition technologies in conjunction with CCTV. Moscow alone has approximately 170,000 cameras, at least 5,000 of which have been outfitted with facial expression recognition technology from NTechLabs. Still, Moscow’s capacity to control and surveil the digital domain at home remains limited, as exemplified by the battle between the messaging app Telegram and the Russian government in early 2018. Telegram, one of the few homegrown Russian tech companies, refused to hand over its encryption keys to the FSB in early 2018. What followed was a haphazard government attempt to ban Telegram by blocking tens of millions of IP addresses, which led to massive disruptions in unrelated services, such as cloud providers, online games, and mobile banking apps. Unlike Beijing, which has effectively sought to censor and control the internet as new technologies have developed, Moscow has not been able to implement similar controls preemptively. The result is that even a relatively small company like Telegram is able to outmaneuver and embarrass the Russian state. Despite such setbacks, however, Moscow seems set to continue on a path toward ‘digital authoritarianism’—using its increasingly unfettered access to citizens’ personal data to build better microtargeting capabilities that enhance social control, censor behavior and speech, and curtail counter-regime activities. Under Putin, Cold War-era ‘active measures’—overt or covert influence operations aimed at influencing public opinion and politics abroad—have been revived and adapted to the digital age. Externally, Russian information warfare (informatsionaya voyna) has become part and parcel of Russian strategic thinking in foreign policy. Moscow has long seen the West as involved in an information war against it—a notion enshrined in Russia’s 2015 national security strategy, which sees the United States and its allies as seeking to contain Russia by exerting ‘informational pressure…’ in an ‘intensifying confrontation in the global information arena.’ Under Putin, Cold War-era ‘active measures’—overt or covert influence operations aimed at influencing public opinion and politics abroad—have been revived and adapted to the digital age. Information warfare (or information manipulation) has emerged as a core component of a broader influence strategy. At the same time, the line between conventional (or traditional) and nonconventional (or asymmetric) warfare has blurred in Russian military thinking. ‘The erosion of the distinction between war and peace, and the emergence of a grey zone’ has been one of the most striking developments in the Russian approach to warfare, according to Chatham House’s Keir Giles. Warfare, from this perspective, exists on a spectrum in which ‘political, economic, informational, humanitarian, and other nonmilitary measures’ are used to lay the groundwork for last resort military operations. The importance of information warfare on the spectrum of war has increased considerably in 21st century warfare, according to contemporary Russian military thought. Maskirovka, the Soviet/Russian term for the art of deception and concealment in both military and nonmilitary operations, is a key concept that figures prominently into Russian strategic thinking. The theory is broader than the narrow definition of military deception. In the conventional military domain, it includes the deployment of decoys, camouflage, and misleading information to deceive the enemy on the battlefield. The use of ‘little green men,’ or unmarked soldiers and mercenaries, in Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014 is one example of maskirovka in military practice. So is the use of fake weapons and heavy machinery: one Russian company is producing an army of inflatable missiles, tanks, and jets that appear real in satellite imagery. Maskirovka, as a theory and operational practice, also applies to nonmilitary asymmetric operations. Modern Russian disinformation and cyber attacks against the West rely on obfuscation and deception in line with the guiding principles of maskirovka. During the 2016 U.S. Presidential elections, for example, Russian citizens working in a troll factory in St. Petersburg, known as the Internet Research Agency (IRA), set up fake social media accounts pretending to be real Americans. These personas then spread conspiracy theories, disinformation, and divisive content meant to amplify societal polarization by pitting opposing groups against each other. The IRA troll factory itself, while operating with the knowledge and support of the Kremlin and the Russian intelligence services, was founded and managed by proxy: a Russian oligarch known as ‘Putin’s chef,’ Yevgeny Prigozhin. Concord, a catering company controlled by Prigozhin, was the main funder and manager of the IRA, and it went to great lengths to conceal the company’s involvement, including the setting up a web of fourteen bank accounts to transfer funding to the IRA. Such obfuscation tactics were designed to conceal the true source and goals of the influence operations in the United Stated while allowing the Kremlin to retain plausible deniability if the operations were uncovered—nonconventional maskirovka in practice. On the whole, Russia’s limited financial resources, the shift in strategic thinking toward information warfare, and the continued prevalence of maskirovka as a guiding principle of engagement, strongly suggest that in the near term, Moscow will ramp up the development of AI-enabled information warfare. Russia will not be the driver or innovator of these new technologies due its financial and human capital constraints. But, as it has already done in its attacks against the West, it will continue to co-opt existing commercially available technologies to serve as weapons of asymmetric warfare. AI-driven Asymmetric Warfare: The Kremlin’s greatest innovation in its information operations against the West has not been technical. Rather, Moscow’s savviness has been to recognize that: (1) ready-made commercial tools and digital platforms can be easily weaponized; and (2) digital information warfare is cost-effective and high-impact, making it the perfect weapon of a technologically and economically weak power. AI-driven asymmetric warfare (ADAW) capabilities could provide Russia with additional comparative advantage. Digital information warfare is cost-effective and high-impact, making it the perfect weapon of a technologically and economically weak power. U.S. government and independent investigations into Russia’s influence campaign against the United States during the 2016 elections reveal the low cost of that effort. Based on publicly available information, we know that the Russian effort included: the purchase of ads on Facebook (estimated cost $100,000)27 and Google (approximate cost $4,700), set up of approximately 36,000 automated bot accounts on Twitter, operation of the IRA troll farm (estimated cost $240,000 over the course of two years), an intelligence gathering trip carried out by two Russian agents posing as tourists in 2014 (estimated cost $50,000), production of misleading or divisive content (pictures, memes, etc.), plus additional costs related to the cyber attacks on the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton campaign. In sum, the total known cost of the most high-profile influence operation against the United States is likely around one million dollars. The relatively low level of investment produced high returns. On Facebook alone, Russian linked content from the IRA reached 125 million Americans. This is because the Russian strategy relied on ready-made tools designed for commercial online marketing and advertising: the Kremlin simply used the same online advertising tools that companies would use to sell and promote its products and adapted them to spread disinformation. Since the U.S. operation, these tools and others have evolved and present new opportunities for far more damaging but increasingly low-cost and difficult-to-attribute ADAW operations. Three threat vectors in particular require immediate attention. First, advances in deep learning are making synthetic media content quick, cheap, and easy to produce. AI-enabled audio and video manipulation, so-called ‘deep fakes,’ is already available through easy-to-use apps such as Face2Face, which allows for one person’s expressions to be mapped onto another face in a target video. Video to Video Synthesis can synthesize realistic video based a baseline of inputs. Other tools can synthesize realistic photographs of AI-rendered faces, reproduce videos and audio of any world leader, and synthesize street scenes to appear in a different season. Using these tools, China recently unveiled an AI made news anchor. As the barriers of entry for accessing such tools continue to decrease, their appeal to low-resource actors will increase. Whereas most Russian disinformation content has been static (e.g., false news stories, memes, graphically designed ads), advances in learning AI will turn disinformation dynamic (e.g. video, audio). Because audio and video can easily be shared on smart phones and do not require literacy, dynamic disinformation content will be able to reach a broader audience in more countries. For example, in India, false videos shared through Whatsapp incited riots and murders. Unlike Facebook or Twitter, Whatsapp (owned by Facebook) is an end-to-end encrypted messaging platform, which means that content shared via the platform is basically unmonitored and untraceable. The ‘democratization of disinformation’ will make it difficult for governments to counter AI-driven disinformation. Advances in machine learning are producing algorithms that ‘continuously learn how to more effectively replicate the appearance of reality,’ which means that ‘deep fakes cannot easily be detected by other algorithms.’ Russia, China, and others could harness these new publicly available technologies to undermine Western soft power or public diplomacy efforts around the world. Debunking or attributing such content will require far more resources than the cost of production, and it will be difficult if not impossible to do so in real time. Second, advances in affective computing and natural language processing will make it easier to manipulate human emotions and extract sensitive information without ever hacking an email account. In 2017, Chinese researchers created an ‘emotional chatting machine’ based on data users shared on Weibo, the Chinese social media site. As AI gains access to more personal data, it will become increasingly customized and personalized to appeal to and manipulate specific users. Coupled with advances in natural learning processing, such as voice recognition, this means that affective systems will be able to mimic, respond to, and predict human emotions expressed through text, voice, or facial expressions. Some evidence suggests that humans are quite willing to form personal relationships, share deeply personal information, and interact for long periods of time with AI designed to form relationships. These systems could be used to gather information from high value targets—such as intelligence officers or political figures—by exploiting their vices and patterns of behavior. Advances in affective computing and natural language processing will make it easier to manipulate human emotions and extract sensitive information without ever hacking an email account. Third, deep fakes and emotionally manipulative content will be able to reach the intended audience with a high degree of precision due to advances in content distribution networks. ‘Precision propaganda’ is the set of interconnected tools that comprise an ‘ecosystem of services that enable highly targeted political communications that reach millions of people with customized messages.’ The full scope of this ecosystem, which includes data collection, advertising platforms, and search engine optimization, aims to parse out audiences in granular detail and identify new receptive audiences will be ‘supercharged’ by advances in AI. The content that users see online is the end product of an underlying multi-billion dollar industry that involves thousands of companies that work together to assess individuals’ preferences, attitudes, and tastes to ensure maximum efficiency, profitability, and real-time responsiveness of content delivery. Russian operations (as far as we know), relied on the most basic of these tools. But, as Ghosh and Scott suggest, a more advanced operation could use the full suite of services utilized by companies to track political attitudes on social media across all congressional districts, analyze who is most likely to vote and where, and then launch, almost instantly, a customized campaign at a highly localized level to discourage voting in the most vulnerable districts. Such a campaign, due to its highly personalized structure, would likely have significant impact on voting behavior. Once the precision of this distribution ecosystem is paired with emotionally manipulative deep fake content delivered by online entities that appear to be human, the line between fact and fiction will cease to exist. And Hannah Arendt’s prediction of a world in which there is no truth and no trust may still come to pass.“ http://www.brookings.edu/research/weapons-of-the-weak-russia-and-ai-driven-asymmetric-warfare (http://archive.is/mMlyN)
I wrote a new, updated, more comprehensive and neutral wiki for the sub, but I guess the mods didn't want it. Here's u/garethom's guide to Birmingham.
I sent this is in a message to the mods a little while back after seeing that the existing wiki was a little out of date, really centric to certain areas and tbh, not very neutral when it came to other areas. It's my no means the end of any recommendations, but considering we have a lot of questions about what to do/see/eat/drink and where to stay or live, I thought it might be helpful. Anyway, I haven't got a response, and I'm not even sure if any of them are even still active here, so I thought I'd just drop it here and maybe somebody can get some use out of it anyway. I'll clarify that outside of playing for one of the American football teams currently, and having previously played for another, I'm not affiliated with any organisation mentioned herein.
Birmingham is the second city (don't listen to anything Manchester says!) of the United Kingdom. It is the largest and most populous city in the United Kingdom, as well as the centre of the second largest urban area after London, with a population somewhere between 1 and 1.3 million people. Birmingham boomed from a non-descript market town to a juggernaut of a city during the Industrial Revolution in the late 1700s/early 1800s, and is called "the first manufacturing town in the world". Although the steam engine is Birmingham's most famous invention, did you know, that amongst hundreds of other things, we're also responsible for the birth of the modern chemical industry, cotton spinning, the Baskerville typeface, building societies, powdered custard, the modern postal system, medical plaster, lawn tennis, plastic, medical use of x-rays, The Lord of the Rings, and the Football League? Well now you do! Today, we don't manufacture so much, but we're still an important city on the global stage. We're now a centre for both the public and private service industry, and one of the most important centres of finance in the country. We form the centre of a metropolitan area, spanning from Solihull in the south east, to Wolverhampton and the Black Country in the north west, and we make up an interesting group of people. We're a city of younger than average people, and are the UK's most ethnically diverse city, with large numbers of immigrants from Ireland, South Asia, the Caribbean and China. This make up has majorly shaped the city we live in today. Whether you're visiting for a day or two, or you're a born and bred Brummie, Birmingham is still a city that can amaze you. And yes... it's true. We do have more canals than Venice.
Big Name Attractions
BBC Birmingham: Visitors can book tours of their working building that take you behind the scenes of their television and radio productions. There is also a visitor centre that doesn't require booking.
Botanical Gardens: A 15 acre selection of gardens and greenhouses containing some of the world's rarest (and in some cases, entirely unique) plants. There are also a number of exotic birds.
Cadbury World: The world famous chocolate manufacturer was founded in Bournville. There are exhibits on the history of chocolate, the making of chocolate, the story of the Cadbury family, and if you hadn't guessed by now, a massive Cadbury shop.
Library of Birmingham: This striking building opened in 2013 is the largest public library in the United Kingdom, and the largest "public cultural space" in Europe and hosts a number of nationally and internationally significant collections.
National Sea Life Centre: Even with our extensive canal network, perhaps not the most appropriate location, but still... A giant aquarium with a range of sea and river life, from sharks, to penguins, to otters.
Sarehole Mill: A working water mill that has played a significant park in the history of both the industry and literature of Birmingham. Matthew Boulton, one of the fathers of the industrial revolution performed experiments there, and Lord of the Rings author, J. R. R. Tolkien lived just a stones throw from the mill. It is located in the Shire Country Park, named for its influence on the location of that name in the aforementioned books.
Thinktank: A family-oriented science experience with a focus on Birmingham's manufacturing and industrial history. You can see real WWII era aircraft, steam trains, and the world's oldest working steam engine. There's also a planetarium.
Aston Hall: The "leading example of the Jacobean prodigy house" has a storied local history, from the Civil War-era onwards.
Back to Backs: The "city's last surviving court of back-to-back houses". Get a feel for life amongst the common folk of the city during the population boom of the Industrial Revolution.
Blakesley Hall: One of the oldest buildings in the city, and an archetypal example of Tudor architecture, originally owned by the famed Smalbroke family.
Coffin Works: A restored factory that historically manufactured brass fittings, and, you guessed it, coffins, including those of famed statesmen and members of the royal family.
Birmingham is a city quickly gaining a world-class reputation for food, with an exploding independent scene backed up by an enviable selection of fine dining options. Fine Dining You may have heard that Birmingham has more Michelin-starred restaurants than any UK city outside of London, and that's (sort of, if you're including Solihull) true! With five (strictly four) restaurants boasting a star, Birmingham has plenty for those desiring a fine dining experience. Purnell's, ran by regular TV face Glyn Purnell, and Adam's are both located in the city centre. Simpsons is just a mile-and-a-bit outside the centre in leafy Edgbaston, and Carters of Moseley is just a little further out, in, well, Moseley. The most recently awarded star goes to Peel's, located in the Hampton Manor hotel in Hampton in Arden, a quick drive from Birmingham Airport. But it's not all about those famous stars. There's also several restaurants that make the Michelin Guide. Asha's (Indian), Opus (European), The Wilderness (British/European), Lasan (Indian), Waters (European), The Boot Inn (European/Fusion), Opheem (Indian), Folium (British/European), and Harborne Kitchen (British/European) are all places you're almost guaranteed some good eating! Street Food & Independents While the Michelin-club get all the plaudits, many prefer Birmingham's proud independent food scene for a cheaper, more relaxed meal. The jewel in the crown is Digbeth Dining Club. The now three-day-a-week event sees an area in Digbeth in the centre of Birmingham closed off and populated by some of the countries finest streetfood vendors for a festival of food, drink and music. Many of the regulars have been crowned winners of something in the various country-wide streetfood competitions in recent years, and you'll get anything from Indian snacks, decadent waffles, slow cooked BBQ, and mouth-watering cheesecakes to award winning burgers. Additionally, in a very similar vein, is the much more recent Hawker Yard. Looking for a burger? You're in luck. There's Original Patty Men (who are so renowned, Drake opted to miss out on the Brit Awards to eat their burgers) and The Meat Shack both located in the city centre that make some of the best burgers you'll ever taste, and have a great selection of beers to go with them. Thanks to the city's impressive Chinatown, you're guaranteed some good authentic Chinese food. Our recommendation? Head to Peach Garden or Look In and order a selection of roasted meats (just look for the hanging ducks in the window, you won't miss them!) Perhaps Birmingham's most world famous offering to the culinary world is the Balti. Named for the thin-pressed steel dish it's served in more than any particular method of cooking, the Balti is a garlic and onion heavy curry that is cooked over high heat, rather than simmering all day. If that sounds enticing to you, then I've got good news. Birmingham is famed for the Balti Triangle, an area around Sparkbook, Sparkhill and Moseley that has an eye-wateringly high concentration of restaurants serving Indian, Pakistani and Bangladeshi food, almost all of which serving many variations of the eponymous dish. While the Balti may have spread across the entirety of the UK, it's well known that Birmingham still has the best. Looking for a recommendation? Check out Adil's, the place that lays perhaps the strongest claim to creating the dish in the first place or Al Frash. We're also locked into an ongoing battle with Glasgow as to which city created the creamy, mild curry, the Chicken Tikka Masala. Added bonus? Many of the city's balti houses are BYOB. Outside of those mentioned, there really is something for those that want something a little different. The Karczma serves authentic Polish food in amazing decor. Bonehead is the place to go for fried chicken. If you're not feeling a full three course balti, Zindiya offers amazing Indian street food. Loaf is a co-operatively ran bakery and cookery school that offer literally the best sausage rolls in the world. Whatever cuisine takes your fancy, you will find a restaurant in Birmingham cooking it to the highest quality. If there's anything that will force you to make plans to visit Birmingham again, it's the food. Drinking And what d'you know, it's not just great food here, but great drink too! In the city centre, you're spoiled for choice. There's a Brewdog bar, serving a range of beers from the eponymous brewery alongside a smorgasbord of guest brewers. Just opposite is Cherry Reds (they also have a location in Kings Heath), serving craft beers in a cafe atmosphere. Located in a former, guess what, the Post Office Vaults invites you to take a look through their "Beer Bible" and select from hundreds of beers from around the world. Purecraft serves beers from the renowned Purity Brewing Company, and the food is amazing too. Around what was formerly a financial district, you'll find a lot of popular bars in attractive buildings, such as The Old Joint Stock, The Lost and Found and The Cosy Club. In the Jewellery Quarter, you'll find the reasonably priced 1000 Trades (usually with a pop-up dishing out great food) and further afield, the Plough in Harborne. Cocktails more your thing? You won't miss out. The Alchemist, Fumo, Ginger's and Gas Street Social all serve proper cocktails in trendy atmospheres. On the same street in Stirchley and Cotteridge, you will find two of the countries highest-rated off-licences. Cotteridge Wines has been voted The Best Bottle Shop in England for five years running, and Stirchley Wines, just a few minutes walk away, is held in similarly high regard. Both have been listed in RateBeer's top four locations in the country.
Birmingham is famous as a sporting city. The Football League, the world's first league football competition, was founded in 1888 by Birmingham resident, and Aston Villa director William McGregor. Along with the aforementioned Aston Villa, Birmingham is also home to another of the oldest football teams in the country, Birmingham City. Birmingham City's Ladies play at the top level of Women's football. The football season runs between August and May. Edgbaston Cricket Ground is home to Warwickshire County Cricket Club, but is also more prominently used for Test matches, One Day Internationals and Twenty20 Internationals. The County Cricket season runs between April and September. The Twenty20 season runs between July and September. Birmingham and the nearby areas are home to two PGA standard golf courses; The Belfry, which has hosted the Ryder Cup more than any other venue, and the Forest of Arden, a regular host of tournaments on the PGA European Tour. Arena Birmingham, formerly known as the National Indoor Arena, has hosted a number of World and European indoor athletics championships, and the Alexander Stadium in Perry Barr is the headquarters of UK Athletics, and the home of the Birchfield Harriers, which counts a number of elite international athletes amongst its members. The first ever game of lawn tennis was played in Birmingham in 1859 and the Birmingham Classic, played annually at the Edgbaston Priory Club is one of only three UK tennis tournaments on the WTA Tour. There are two professional Rugby Union teams in Birmingham and the surrounding areas. Moseley Rugby Football Club play in the National League 1, and Birmingham & Solihull Pertemps Bees play in the Midlands Premier division. The Rugby Union season typically runs between September and April. Birmingham is also home to the oldest British American football team, the Birmingham Bulls and the most successful team in University American football, the Birmingham Lions at the University of Birmingham. The Tamworth Phoenix, the current BAFA National League champions, are located in nearby Coleshill, and the Sandwell Steelers are located in the Black Country. The BAFA National Leagues season typically runs between April and August and the University season typically runs between October and January. The Birmingham Bandits play in the National Baseball League, the top level of competition in the country. The season typically runs between April and August. Birmingham will host the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
Film For those that want to catch a movie, there is, as you might expect, a range of chain cinemas in dozens of locations across the city in which you can catch the latest release. But if you're looking for something really special? Why not check out The Electric, the UK's oldest working cinema? Of course, they show the latest blockbusters, but they also show classic movies and special events throughout the year. Music Whatever your preference, there's a good bet that Birmingham has had an impact. We have the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra playing at the Symphony Hall for those with a more refined ear. There are regular jazz festivals across the city and surroundings through the year. Perhaps you've heard of the small time bands Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Led Zeppelin and Napalm Death? Birmingham is the home to metal, and it's an influence that is still obvious today. You'll find local bands playing the full spectrum of metal at music pubs across the city. If you want to check out a band on tour, we've got arenas that range in size from the huge (Arena Birmingham, Genting Arena) to the more modest (Hare & Hounds, HMV Institute) and those in-between (O2 Academy). TheatreThe Repertory Theatre is the UK's longest-established "producing theatre" and the Alexandra and Hippodrome are the go-to places to see shows on tour. Those looking for a particularly classy night out can choose from the Birmingham Royal Ballet, resident at the Hippodrome, or the Birmingham Opera Company, known for their avant garde performances in non-typical spaces. Museums & GalleriesBirmingham Museum & Art Gallery is the big one. A notable collection of Pre-Raphaelite work and the Staffordshire Hoard are probably the stand outs that it's known for, but there's a temporary exhibition space that hosts events like student exhibitions from local universities. The Barber Institute of Fine Arts is located on the campus of the University of Birmingham, and was one of only five galleries outside London to receive five stars for having "Outstanding collections of international significance", and this relatively modest sized gallery hosts works by the likes of Vincent van Gogh, Claude Monet, Auguste Rodin and J. M. W. Turner and has one of the world's largest coin collections. If contemporary art is more your thing, then the Ikon Gallery in Brindley Place is for you, hosting rotating exhibitions throughout the year. The mac, located in Cannon Hill Park is an art gallery with rotating exhibitions that also hosts plays, concerts and film showings. For further Museums & Galleries see the "Attractions" section. Nightlife As a young city, there's plenty of places in the city to while the night away. Broad Street is Birmingham's most well known area. It's a long street with very popular, relatively "bog-standard" bars and clubs, with large dancefloors and loud, popular music. PRYZM is the largest nightclub in the city, and Grosvenor Casino, open 24 hours, is nearby. You'll most likely find single 18-25 year olds along this busy street just a few minutes walk from the very centre of the city. Birmingham's Gay Village is also well established, with Nightingales being arguably the biggest name. Nearby, the Arcadian hosts a number of smaller bars and clubs. The Jewellery Quarter offers more intimate nightlife options, and you're more likely to find a slightly older clientele sipping cocktails and listening to live bands than on their feet on a dancefloor. Digbeth is where the cool people go in search of more underground fare. DJs and producers playing House, Techno (including the world famous "Birmingham Sound"), Dubstep, Garage and Drum & Bass congregate in the clubs in this area, catering to those that are happy to go all night. If you want to go even further off the beaten track, check out PST where you're likely to find Listening Sessions, showcasing a range of music from local producers. ShoppingThe Bullring is the major shopping centre in Birmingham. It is one of Europe's largest and houses just one of four Selfridges department stores, housed in an iconic building. There are a number of stores selling fashion, cosmetics, toys and gifts and food. The Bull Ring markets see 140 stallholders offering fresh fruit and vegetables, meats and fish, and basically every non-food item you can think of. The Jewellery Quarter is Europe's largest concentration of businesses involved in the jewellery trade, which produces 40% of all the jewellery made in the UK. The Great Western Arcade is a Grade II listed row of shops that cater almost entirely to independent retailers where you're almost guaranteed to find something unique.
We're a relatively temperate city, in that it rarely gets super cold, and rarely gets super hot. In the summer months, you can expect a twenty four hour swing from around 11°C(52°F) to 23°C(73°F), and in the winter months, anywhere between 0°C(32°F) and 7°C(45°F). We get roughly 10-13 rainy days per month throughout the year. Compared to other UK cities, we are relatively snowy, due to our inland position and high elevation, however, it rarely snows to a degree that it causes problems.
Birmingham is, perhaps surprisingly given its unfair reputation, an outstandingly green city. We have a stunning 571 parks in the city, more than any other European city. Sutton Park is the biggest park in the city, and is Europe's largest urban park outside of a capital city. Around a quarter of the former Royal Forest is covered by ancient woodlands, and there are a number of large ponds and pools. It is relatively common to see deer and exmoor ponies in the less busy parts of the park. There are several sporting events held in the park throughout the year. The Lickey Hills are home to a Green Flag awarded country park that offer picturesque views of the city of Birmingham, and are home to several species of deer, badgers and around ninety bird species, and some believe this favoured haunt of J. R. R. Tolkien formed the inspiration for the Shire in his famed The Lord Of The Rings series. Cannon Hill Park is a 250 acre area consisting of woodland, grassland and several large ponds. There are areas for soccer, boating, fishing, tennis and mini-golf.
Due to its centralised location, Birmingham is well placed for transport. It is served by the M5, M6 (famed for the Gravelly Hill Interchange, more commonly known as Spaghetti Junction), M40 and M42 motorways. Birmingham Airport (actually located in Solihull), is an international airport, with flights to and from to many destinations in Europe, North America, the Caribbean, Africa, the Middle East and Asia. Birmingham New Street is the largest railway station outside of London and serves locations across the country. Snow Hill and Moor Street act as the northern termini for trains coming from London Marylebone. Buses are mainly administered by National Express, and the West Midlands bus route 11, also known as the Birmingham Outer Circle, is the longest urban bus route in Europe at 27 miles, taking around three hours to complete. Uber operates within Birmingham.
Living In Birmingham
Many times we're asked here on brum "where should I live", "is area X ok to live in", etc. Much like everything else in Birmingham, there is a lot of variety. Houses can range from cheap as chips to pretty expensive, and each area of the city has its own up and downsides. It's not so easy to divide Birmingham by distinct areas of desirability, and some of the most expensive and sought after suburbs border those that aren't as popular.
Living in central Birmingham will be similar to living in the centre of any other big city, if you've ever done that. There will always be something to do on right on your doorstep, the social opportunities are immense, and your commute can be but a short walk to the office. Of course, this is often at the expense of a smaller, more expensive property, greater noise and everywhere is pretty busy 24/7. There are a number of distinct "regions" in the city centre. Brindley Place & Surrounding Areas Likely the priciest part of the city centre to live in, but there are often more than small flats available. Penthouses, townhouses and large apartments are more common in this area. Average property price: Anywhere from ~£150,000 to £1m+Brindley Place on Streetcheck Digbeth An area still undergoing gentrification, but also a focal point for up and coming independents in business, food, arts and culture. Most, if not all, properties in Digbeth will be flats. Most of Digbeth is a five minute walk to the centre of the city. Average property price: £158,024Digbeth on Streetcheck Jewellery Quarter Great for food and drink, the Jewellery Quarter, while still a stronghold in the UK jewellery industry, is fast becoming one of the "cooler" areas to live in the city. Most, if not all, properties in the Jewellery Quarter will be flats. Average property price: ~£200,000-250,000Jewellery Quarter on Streetcheck
North Birmingham has a large swing in terms of lifestyle. Some areas closer to the city centre are more economically deprived, whereas further away, the likes of Sutton Coldfield can boast some of the most expensive and most desirable locations in the Midlands. The transport links are, to some, an attraction to living in North Birmingham, usually being just minutes from several junctions on the M6 and M5. Aston Aston as a settlement is very old, and has a real mix of history, ranging from the medieval to Jacobean to early 1900s. Most properties in Aston are terraced houses. Average property price: £107,137Aston on Streetcheck Erdington Lying between the city centre and it's more expensive neighbour, Erdington is fast becoming a desirable location for those priced out of Sutton Coldfield. There is a range of properties from detached housing to flats. Average property price: £163,075Erdington on Streetcheck Handsworth An "on the rise" area that can boast perhaps the longest list of famous residents in the whole city. There are a wide range of properties from detached housing to terraced houses. Average property price: £144,484Handsworth on Streetcheck Sutton Coldfield A "Royal Town" and the fourth-least deprived area in the country, Sutton Coldfield is renowned as a very affluent area with many attractions. There are a range of properties from terraced houses to very large detached houses. Average property price: £314,808 although houses can and do regularly top £3m+Sutton Coldfield on Streetcheck
East Birmingham is home to a diverse population, and a relatively green area stretching from the city centre to neighbouring Solihull, and is quickly finding itself a niche as younger folk priced out of Solihull move to a desirable location between the leafy town and Birmingham's centre. Bordesley Green Traditionally an area popular with immigrants, and mostly consists of terraced houses. Average property price: £122,712Bordesley Green on Streetcheck Stechford Mostly terraced housing with a tonne of local ameneties and is cut almost in two by the River Cole and has a large nature reserve running through it. Average property price: £150,085Stechford on Streetcheck Yardley & Sheldon An historically old suburb of Birmingham, with a dedicated conservation area and many local ameneties. There are a range of properties from detached houses to a small number of flats and apartments. Average property price: £162,601Yardley & Sheldon on Streetcheck
The south of Birmingham is home to some of the "coolest" suburbs that are quickly gaining popularity, seated between the city centre and what you might call "countryside" towards Warwickshire. Hall Green Encompassing much of the Tolkien trail, this suburb borders Shirley in Solihull. Average property price: £209,923Hall Green on Streetcheck Kings Heath, Stirchley and Cotteridge These three closely related suburbs are quickly becoming seen as an affordable alternative to Moseley. Average property price: £211,276Kings Heath on Streetcheck Moseley With a real "village" feel, there are many renowned drinking holes and eateries, with a large range of property types. Average property price: £276,533Moseley on Streetcheck Sparkhill Home to a large population of immigrants, it's not surprising that Sparkhill is home to much of the famed "Balti Triangle". Most of the properties are terraced houses. Average property price: £142,394Sparkhill on Streetcheck
As you move away from the city centre towards the Black Country, you'll come across some of the city's most sought-after locations for both young and old alike. Edgbaston A very affluent suburb that is also home to much of the University of Birmingham campus. There are a number of very large houses, but also a large number of flats and terraced houses. Houses can and do regularly go for £1m+ Average property price: £301,851Edgbaston on Streetcheck Harborne A Victorian-era suburb with a large amount of terraced and semi-detached housing, located between Edgbaston and Quinton. Average property price: £278,266Harbone on Streetcheck Selly Oak The majority of residents in this suburb are students at Birmingham's universities. As such, it has many transport links to the city centre. Most of the properties are terraced houses. Average property price: £221,046Selly Oak on Streetcheck Quinton This green suburb basically forms the very western border of the city before you enter Sandwell and Dudley. Most properties are semi-detached. Average property price: £258,077Quinton on Streetcheck
Outside the city
Birmingham is part of the greater West Midlands conurbation, so it can be used as a hub for exploring the region easily. Solihull is situated on the south-eastern edge of Birmingham. Solihull is an affluent town with a mid-sized town centre, and a number of smaller villages located more rurally. Coventry can be reached via the M6 or A45, and is roughly a half an hour to fourty minute drive from the city centre. Stratford-Upon-Avon, famed for being the home of William Shakespeare, is located roughly an hour away from the city centre. Warwick, the home of Warwick Castle, is located near Royal Leamington Spa, and is about an hour by car from the city centre. The Cotswolds, a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, can be quickly reached, anywhere from one to two hours away from the city centre. Worcester and the Malvern Hills, a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, can be reached via the M5, around an hour and a half from the city centre. On the western edge of the city, the Black Country, consisting of Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton can be found. Further out west, the Shropshire Hills, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty can be found. To the north of the city, Cannock Chase, a large, heavily wooded Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is located.
Yogi Spacetime Travel by Jayge "Uh-hey Boo-Boo, you wanna travel through time?" "Uhh... I don't think that's a good idea Yogi...": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Time_travel Travel in spacetime for most people is understandably limited. Most of us have 2 legs and a brain. Our legs can only take us over land and from 0 up to 28 mph. "Humans could perhaps run as fast 40 mph, a new study suggests. Such a feat would leave in the dust the world's fastest runner, Usain Bolt, who has clocked nearly 28 mph in the 100-meter sprint. The new findings come after researchers took a new look at the factors that limit human speed.": https://www.livescience.com/8039-humans-run-40-mph-theory.html Our methodical brains eventually learned to harness the speed and power of equines, bovines, camelids, and elephantidae, which served us well for millennia. Then along came the wheel, a revolutionary invention impacting virtually every aspect of human life. Minor improvements followed, until steam locomotion was applied to wheels and industry boomed. Mankind has been accelerating ever since. When it arcs to less than 4 million miles of our sun, 2018's Solar Probe Plus is expected to reach 450,000 mph, a new world record.: https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/26/fastest-spacecraft-record-nasa-solar-probe-plus_n_2762918.html From Star Trek science we learn that technologically warping spacetime is the sine qua non of both faster-than-light (FTL) speed and paradox-free time travel. Natural and artificial 'wormholes' might be other viable alternatives for future travelers: https://www.nasa.gov/topics/technology/features/star_trek.html Simpler and much more energy-efficient, but requiring exceptional mental focus, one uses brain power in a different way, mentally warping spacetime, not as far-fetched as it may initially seem.: https://qz.com/1108124/the-physics-of-time-travel-isnt-just-the-stuff-of-science-fiction/ Mystic yogis are renown for their physical and mental powers, yet little understood yet by western science, which tends to label them ironically as illusionists.: http://www.sciforums.com/threads/time-travel-with-yoga.31103/ Let's imagine a journey on Yogic Time Spaceline with our yogi राযरा, that's Rajər if your Sanskrit's rusty. Doc Emmett Brown said "Roads? Where we're going we won't need roads.": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=flge_rw6RG0 Rajər doesn't require NASA's elaborate fuel-conserving Interplanetary Superhighway linking LaGrange points either.: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/genesis/media/jpl-release-071702.html OK, so how does our yogi Rajər warp spacetime with just his focused mind? If you're expecting yantras 'mystical diagrams' or mantras 'words or sounds repeated to aid concentration in meditation', you're partly correct, but the key is the same way we will, by creative visualization. Visualize a clear, detailed image of whatever you wish and then realize it. To paraphrase Field of Dreams, Focus: build it and you will go, or stay here unfocused.: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Creative_visualization When we vividly recall a past event, aren't we in a sense recreating that time in mind? Similarly, we can visualize eons of time past and future. There aren't many steps between that and genuine spacetime travel. Humans like to make things harder than they need be. Remember this one? "If man was meant to fly he'd have wings." Or "Get a horse!" aimed at early drivers. Most sci-fi writers mumbo jumbo their way through the science to get to the fiction, but that's cheating the reader. Cinema has a legitimate excuse of limited time, while an author has the luxury to spend several paragraphs or chapters explaining fine points to his/her audience. Isaac Asimov often did that. If they find it boring, they can skip ahead to return to the action. Are there other ways to travel? Here are a pair of intriguing books, The Yoga of Time Travel: How the Mind Can Defeat Time and Parallel Universes: The Search For Other Worlds, both by Fred Alan Wolf and available in some libraries.: https://www.amazon.com/Yoga-Time-Travel-Mind-Defeat/dp/083560828X, http://isbninspire.com/pdf123/offer.php?id=083560828X, https://www.amazon.com/Parallel-Universes-Search-Other-Worlds/dp/0671696017, and http://www.eighbooks.com/lib.php?q=parallel-universes-the-search-for-other-worlds-fred-alan-wolf "Time travel is not just science fiction; it may actually be possible. Wolf draws on yoga and quantum physics to show that time is a flexible projection of mind. Cheating time, he says, is an ancient metaphysical idea from the Vedas having to do with moving through meditation to a place where time stands still." "The author, a theoretical physicist, uses an ancient Hindu meditative technique, that draws on yoga and quantum physics to show that time is a flexible projection of the mind." "Chapter One alone is more than worth the price of the book, as it describes how a yoga adept can overcome the five barriers to reaching the state of egoless mind... which is what Wolf explains one needs to do in order to travel through time without a time travel device." "Fred Alan Wolf is a world-renowned physicist, writer, and lecturer who also conducts research on the relationship of quantum physics to consciousness. He is the author of 13 books, 3 audio CD courses and received the National Book Award for "Taking the Quantum Leap". He is a member of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Collegium of Scholars and was Professor of physics at San Diego State University for twelve years. Dr. Wolf has appeared in many nationally released films including "What the Bleep Do We Know?" and "The Secret." His latest book is "Time-Loops and Space-Twists: How God Created the Universe." He has been interviewed on several radio and television programs including New Dimensions Radio, Western Public Radio, National Public Radio, and many others. He was the visiting scholascientist-in-residence in the Pacific Northwest sponsored by The Institute for Science, Technology, and Public Policy during the spring season, 1994. He has spoken numerous times before The Commonwealth Club of San Francisco, The Smithsonian Museum in Washington, DC, and several other prominent organizations and been interviewed on a number of television shows between the years 1995 to the present including: The Discovery Channel's The Know Zone, Sightings, The Thinking Allowed Television Series, The Malone show, The Evidence for Heaven. Star Trek IV, Special Collector's edition, The Fabric of Time, The Case for Christ's Resurrection, Down the Rabbit Hole, and the PBS series Closer to Truth." https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Fred+Alan+Wolf "What if you KNEW that your mind is actually a powerful machine? It is not only a tool for solving your daily problems; it is much more. What if you understood that your mind is an extension of your all powerful soul, that part of you that is the I AM, connected to Source, or the Universe or God? What if you could understand that your mind is more like a magic wand? What if you figured out the idea that how magical your magic wand is relates directly to how well you manage your thoughts, belief systems and physical reality? Yes! It is all in your Mind!" "The Yoga of Time Travel is a book written by Fred Alan Wolf, Ph.D., an American physicist acknowledged to be one of the most influential spiritual writers of our time." "This newsletter is based on a cursory overview of parts of a book that I very much enjoyed reading this summer. It is a lay person’s guide to quantum mechanics, time, space, and an explanation of how the human mind influences time, space, and the non-physical and physical universe we all live in. In short, time travel!" "Although it is not a technical review of quantum mechanics written for physicists, it is still complex for lay people simply because it deals with a lot of paradoxical issues as they relate to time travel. I found myself reading and re-reading a lot of the content." "It is not my intention to provide a thorough review of this wonderful book. I will touch upon the key ideas that might help you understand your mind and its role in influencing the Youniverse and how it affects time, space and matter. Yes, Youniverse. You read that right!" "I hope to engage you in some thinking about how your mind affects time and space to learn to experience yourself as the I AM of time and space." "Putting the You back into the Youniverse You are the centre of your universe; and all of the things you see around you too. All of your thoughts have power; they have power in the NOW to affect the present, the past, and the future of all reality and what you see as reality. Choose your thoughts carefully! " "So, what’s with all this Youniverse stuff? It is a bit much, eh?" "I will do my best to help you understand why your Universe is actually your Youniverse… Or is that why your Youniverse is actually your Universe?" "Let’s start with a bit of paradigm shifting first. We live in a world where we believe that we and what we observe are in fact separate. Well, in the physical world, things certainly do appear that way, but what we have learned from quantum mechanics is that the observer and the observed are inextricably linked. Put more strongly, there is no universe (what we observe) without the observer (you). This is why you are being asked to see yourself as fundamentally tied to the Youniverse!" "Why is that important? It is important because it means that your observations (meaning participation in, deciding upon, wishing for, declaring true) are the thoughts that drive the world around you. The mere consideration of an issue and mental reaction or decision on something sets wheels in motion for you." "Your thoughts are like a radio message to the universe on a massive scale that affects every piece of that universe down to the electron. It affects your own cells and their DNA, they affect how you perceive your universe and how that universe treats you, because it is delivering to you exactly what you believe is true! They affect all time and space!" "How you see yourself through your self-talk influences you on chemical and biochemical levels, creating your physical manifestation, the you that you see in the mirror, the you that has a bad back, the you that has a problem with weight, or appetite, the you that is prone to catching colds, the you that is clumsy or an all-star athlete. These are all physical manifestations of your thoughts translated into who You are physically, all through complex biochemical and neurochemical activities. Your thoughts create who you are in your world; your world does not create who you are." "Extending this to the world outside of you means that how you talk to yourself about how you are perceived, how well you are liked, how your friends treat you is also an extension of physical manifestation working off of the same quantum field of energy. This time it is about what you perceive to be external to you. It is not actually external to you since fundamentally, all things are made from the same unified field stuff whether it is people, rocks, stars, bunnies, or cars. There really is no me or you or it! It is all one thing!" "So, how you think about yourself and how you think about other things or people all comes down to how you see the quantum field as a whole. How it responds to you or what is around you is a matter of what you put into it." "Some of you are thinking about the glass half full vs. glass half empty question In reality the glass is always full of something, but what it is full of is the real question." "Your mind is the centre of all activity, all creation, and all effects on non-physical reality. You literally think your world into being..." "You are probably wondering what this has to do with time travel. We will get to that later. In the mean time, I would like to get you to think about something really interesting." "As I pointed out, your thoughts interact with the universe. This idea is exciting, but not as exciting as the notion that without your thoughts interacting with the universe the physical universe would actually disappear. Without our observations, thoughts, ideas about our world and without our inserting ourselves into it literally and mentally, the universe would slowly dissolve into the nonphysical elements or quantum field from which it was dreamed into existence." "How is that possible? It goes something like this: If you were flipping a coin, it could land heads or tails. Until you observe one option or the other as having happened, it belongs to the realm of the quantum universe of possibilities or optional parallel universes. Once observed, it collapses into either heads or tails in this universe and perhaps the alternative option in a parallel universe too. But, until it is observed, all options are open as possible." "This example is not a complicated one, but it makes the point. When we interact with the universe we influence it and create an event based on our observations and thoughts about it. What this means is that the universe that is unobserved or unaffected by your thoughts is in limbo, waiting to be observed." "It is not limbo; rather it is pure potential! The quantum field is what is often referred to as the void, the nothing from which all things are manifested. And what do you think drives the void to create? The void is driven to manifest into the physical directly through our thoughts. Whether these thoughts can co-create immediately, or slowly or not at all, is a function of how clear and detailed our thoughts are on a subject and how much feeling we put into them. Thoughts are important to conceptualize, but the heart is the fuel that drives manifestation." "Again, the question is not about the glass being half empty or half full; more about what the quality of your thoughts are and whether they are clear and fueled by passion." "“Whoever controls the past controls the future; whoever controls the present controls the past”.–George Orwell" "We need to stop and think for a bit about what this discussion is about. It is not so much about time travel as it is about your mind; that thing that has a dedicated, hard-lined connection to the Universe/Source/God. In Australian aboriginal culture is the notion of Dreamland. Dreamland is according to tradition, the ancient place where (the) God(s) dreamed our world into reality." "God created us in the Image of God. That image is nothing short of a CREATOR. Maybe you knew that, maybe you didn’t. But I bet my favourite T-shirt that you never thought about recreating reality in the past. Hang on for a while and I will get to that too. It is a fascinating story." "Your Mind is a Powerful Tool for Traveling Through Time and Space and Affecting Past, Present and Future." "Now we can start talking about using your mind for time travel. Finally!!!" "MEMORY AND OUR PAST" "One thing Quantum Mechanics agrees on is that there may not be a single, agreed-upon human or world history. If each of us creates our own present and can affect our own futures, we also have a different perspective on our own pasts. You will realize that as you go over your memories of life events, you cannot recall a stream of events; you recall short segments or ideas or pictures, but no real ‘movie’ that lasts any length of time. But, those memories preserve the energy of those events, and so they now participate in what happens in your present. If those memories disappear, so do influences they bring to forming the present and future." "MEMORY AND OUR FUTURE" "In the same vein, what ideas we plant into co-creating our futures create an energy pattern or signature in the future. It is that pattern that now begins to create energy for their completion. The now begins to meet the then in the future. The more fluid, passionate and complete your pattern is as you are dreaming it into the quantum field or void, the more complete your manifestation will be. The stronger the connection between your past recollections and the future you are creating, the more powerful your co-creation." "DISAPPEARANCE OF THE UNIVERSE" "If we stopped remembering our past and stopped dreaming up our future, we remove those energy signatures from the void. In theory, then what happens is the energy that holds the past, and future will begin to disintegrate and the universe will vanish. As your past and future destabilize, there is little to keep the pattern of the present." "THE PARADOX OF HUMAN AND SPIRITUAL EXISTENCE" "While we are all busy exploring our higher-level chakras, we are focusing on our ‘out there’ (the world around us) and focusing less on our ‘in here’ (the mind). While in the ‘out there’, we are exploring higher realms at the expense of our ‘in here’. We destabilize our physical world at the expense of summoning our higher selves. In contrast, while we focus on the physical world, the ‘out there”, we strengthen the physical signature of our world, but our higher self or ‘in here’ begins to lose its footing. Like with all things, balance seems to be the key to spiritual and physical existence." "BACK AND FORTH IN THE MIND" "We know we can affect the future through programmation. What we seldom consider that this time machine allows us to go into the past, into our memories; there is a real purpose in our ability to travel there. Our mind’s ability to travel into the past is not only about visiting a fondness or sorrows from our past; it is about visiting to heal the past." "The past cannot be altered, but the energy of the past can be altered from a poor status to a healed status. Energies of fear, anger, hate, misunderstanding, and jealousy can all be transformed into energies of love, peace and reconciliation." "RETHINKING OUR PERSONAL ROLES" "When it comes to all of us (the world), it is important to recognize that our Oneness, (the collective universal mind) is individuated in such a way that we all see the same thing differently. Here are some concepts to consider: The observer and the observed are not separate; they are opposite sides of one coin. Interchangeable! The same ‘movie’ (life around us) is seen by all of us, but is perceived differently by each of us. Because that is true, we form different opinions of how the ‘out there’ affects the ‘in here’." "We forget that we formulate and program of the ‘out there’; not the other way around. When we feel that the world is doing something to us, we must remember that we are doing something to it! We are creating our universe." "The ‘in here’ creates the ‘out there’. Or “As above, so below” in Biblical parlance." "THE INTENTION EXPERIMENT – AN INTERESTING CHAPTER" "I will now introduce the notion of one’s ability to influence the past, acknowledging that many will find the idea of the present influencing the past as being either trite or novel. If we take the common approach when thinking about this, we all resort to the old saw that the victor in any battle writes the history books, but that is not what I am talking about. That is trivial." "But what if we look at this differently and see a very different perspective of the present influencing the past? What if we take a novel approach, that demands we really can influence critical parts of our history from the present?" "In McTaggart’s book The Intention Experiment, there is a chapter that describes a healing. I am recalling this story from memory, since of course I cannot find the book, now that I need it. The story goes something like this:" "Hospital patients in a hospital in Israel are randomly divided into two groups. The patients themselves know nothing of this experiment or that there are two groups of patients; they are just patients as far as they themselves are concerned." "A prayer group prays for members of Group A. The prayer group only knows that it is praying for a number of people on a list and is not aware of any experiment. Group B are controls who receive no prayer and they are unaware of any experiment. They too are just patients in a hospital." "The experiment is concluded after some period of time. What is interesting is that Group A people (receiving prayer) show a better profile of healing and recovery than those in Group B (not receiving prayer) after the experiment concluded." "This in and of itself is not the interesting part. What is interesting is that the prayer was done 20 or more years in the future, relative to when the patients were in the Israeli hospital. For example, the patients were living in the 1960s in this hospital, however the prayer group began praying for Group A in the 1980s." "When the two groups’ members were revealed later on once the prayer sessions had concluded, it was shown that those who had a better recovery or survival back in the 1960s were those people who belonged to Group A, which received the benefit of prayer session in the 1980s. Remember though, that those praying only knew they were praying for a given list of people and did not know anything about another group for whom no prayer was offered. It was a blind-experiment." "Here is clear evidence that the past can be influenced by the present or future. Not only is manipulation of the fabric of time possible, it is important and crammed with vast and unimaginable possibilities for what can be done about the present and as we now can see, about the past too." We have the potential to not only affect patients’ health in the past while working in the now. It is possible to heal a number of other scenarios from the past. What is critical though is to KNOW that this is possible. Without the KNOWING, there is no effect. This is an important ingredient in time manipulation. Like everything else you manifest, you must KNOW." "KNOWING THAT YOU ARE THE MASTER OF THE YOUNIVERSE UNLEASHES THE POWER OF THE VOID TO MANIPULATE TIME AND SPACE." "I read this Lynne McTaggart book when it came out in 2008. I read this book with much sincere enthusiasm. I processed a lot of what I found interesting and forgot what did not resonate for me; we all do that. What is important is that all of what we really remember is clearly dependent on what catches our attention or personal interest. I read a chapter on influencing the past from the present. I found the notion of influencing the past fascinating and exciting. How can this possibility not be exciting??? OK... Now read this.... Only the future is certain. The past is always changing." "You Hold All of the Cards in the Youniverse." "You know that you are the observer and that you think the universe into existence. When you think, you send energy into the void, the quantum field. The universe fashions your thoughts into the world you see around you, reflecting every quality of your thoughts. Think good thoughts and KNOW your thoughts have real power. The past, present, and future are connected, but they do not necessarily flow in only one direction. You knew before that you could affect the future through programmation. You now know that you can also affect the past creating opportunities to heal past situations, remake bad energy into good energy, and reverse the negativity from the past from influencing your present and future. The only thing that you have not been told thus far is that our world is doing things in the wrong order. Society is constantly told to act. “Action speaks louder than words” and all of that…. While that might be true, action does not speak louder than thoughts. Your actions only affect the things directly around you; the things you act on. Your thoughts affect the entire universe. Think of it! The whole universe, all of creation and the potential housed in the void all in your Mind." "The next time you think that you are powerless, think again. You are a creator like God, after whom you are fashioned!" "To a mind that is still, the whole universe surrenders Lao Tzu" http://www.aromansse.com/gateway/newsletteTime_Travel.pdf According to legend, when he tried to leave China for the west riding a water buffalo (bovine), Lao Tzu or Laozi (both mean Old Master) was stopped by a border patrol, until he agreed to write Daodejing or Tao Te Ching.: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tao_Te_Ching and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laozi In case you're wondering where I got the name Rajər, it was from Airplane. Those more mature than me can skip this, but, for the rest of us, here's Airplane's Abbot-and-Costello-like cockpit routine with Peter Graves as Captain Clarence Oveur, Kareem Abdul Jabbar as Roger Murdock, and Frank Ashmore as Victor Basta. Roger replies, "Hunh?" anytime a cockpit member says "Roger." Oveur replies, "What?" anytime a cockpit member says "Over." I suspect the final "Who?" is in tribute to Abbot and Costello's Who's on First routine.: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTcRRaXV-fg "Two oh niner to Ground control. We're loaded and ready to taxi." "Two zero niner, taxi to runway one niner...Flight two zero niner, you're cleared for takeoff." "Roger." "Hunh?" "L.A. departure frequency one two three point niner." "Roger." "Hunh?" "Request vector. Over." "What?" "Flight two zero niner, clear for vector three two four." "We have clearance, Clarence." "Roger, Roger. What's our vector, Victor?" "Tower's radioing clearance. Over." "That's Clarence Oveur." "Over." "Roger." "Hunh?" "Roger. Over." "What?" "Hunh?" "Who?": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NfDUkR3DOFw This tale would not be complete without some time and space comments from the man who has more World Series records than anyone, New York Yankees catcher Yogi Berra, originally from St. Louis Missouri. "It ain't over till it's over. It's like déjà vu all over again. It gets late early out here. It ain’t the heat, it’s the humility. The future ain't what it used to be. You can observe a lot by just watching. If you don't know where you are going, you'll end up someplace else. Baseball is ninety percent mental and the other half is physical. No one goes there nowadays, it’s too crowded. In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is. It's tough to make predictions, especially about the future. If you can’t imitate him, don’t copy him. A nickel ain't worth a dime anymore. Always go to other people's funerals; otherwise they won't go to yours. We made too many wrong mistakes. Congratulations. I knew the record would stand until it was broken. You better cut the pizza in four pieces because I’m not hungry enough to eat six. You wouldn’t have won if we’d beaten you. I usually take a two-hour nap from one to four. Never answer an anonymous letter. Slump? I ain’t in no slump… I just ain’t hitting. How can you think and hit at the same time? I tell the kids, somebody’s gotta win, somebody’s gotta lose. Just don’t fight about it. Just try to get better. If the people don’t want to come out to the ballpark, nobody’s going to stop them. We have deep depth. Pair up in threes. Why buy good luggage, you only use it when you travel. You’ve got to be very careful if you don’t know where you are going, because you might not get there. All pitchers are liars or crybabies. Even Napoleon had his Watergate. Bill Dickey is learning me his experience. He hits from both sides of the plate. He’s amphibious. It was impossible to get a conversation going, everybody was talking too much. I can see how he (Sandy Koufax) won twenty-five games. What I don’t understand is how he lost five. I don’t know (if they were men or women fans running naked across the field). They had bags over their heads. I’m not going to buy my kids an encyclopedia. Let them walk to school like I did. In baseball, you don’t know nothing. I never blame myself when I’m not hitting. I just blame the bat and if it keeps up, I change bats. After all, if I know it isn’t my fault that I’m not hitting, how can I get mad at myself? If you ask me anything I don’t know, I’m not going to answer. I wish everybody had the drive he (Joe DiMaggio) had. He never did anything wrong on the field. I’d never seen him dive for a ball, everything was a chest-high catch, and he never walked off the field. So I’m ugly. I never saw anyone hit with his face. Take it with a grin of salt. (On the 1973 Mets) We were overwhelming underdogs. The towels were so thick there I could hardly close my suitcase. Little League baseball is a very good thing because it keeps the parents off the streets. Mickey Mantle was a very good golfer, but we weren’t allowed to play golf during the season; only at spring training. You don’t have to swing hard to hit a home run. If you got the timing, it’ll go. I’m lucky. Usually you’re dead to get your own museum, but I’m still alive to see mine. If I didn’t make it in baseball, I won’t have made it workin’. I didn’t like to work. If the world were perfect, it wouldn’t be. A lot of guys go, ‘Hey, Yog, say a Yogi-ism.’ I tell ’em, ‘I don’t know any.’ They want me to make one up. I don’t make ’em up. I don’t even know when I say it. They’re the truth. And it is the truth. I don’t know. I really didn't say everything I said. I’m a lucky guy and I’m happy to be with the Yankees. And I want to thank everyone for making this night necessary."
Somebody please explain to me I don't care who works for Leidos shuffle or Conceras or whoever the heck he says he works for what the heck's he doing standing next to rocket man's rocket rocket, right?
And wasn't here isn't Iran the same thing only for spinning Uranium
TF: I mean I think Trump is looking at these things I think that's why they're so pissed
G: Now, there's coming this week we got a couple of things we're gonna break
Robyn told you directly I heard her tell you that there's a famous journalist that a True Pundit, right
Thomas Paine will be: tell the viewing audience?
TF: I don't know for sure
G: All right well I just think Thomas Paine--you'll know his name
I'm not saying it'll be his real name no it'll be his real name I think
You're gonna know Thomas Paine pretty quick Thomas if I blew it up there I'm sorry
And then the other big one about Andy and financial? Do you want to talk about that?
TF: Just that there are some rumors about some things coming out about Andy and some financial
What do I want to say? What's the word? Fraud I don't know well financial struggles he's had throughout well
G: Well And Jeffrey Sterling I believe goes to the same law school that Andy went to
And that's the Contractors International of America school of Laws Sheepskins
I think they've known each other for a long time I think they worked in New York market
I think they worked in New York recruit market a long time
And we'll just leave it at that check out how closely paired Jeff Sterling is toAndy McCabe starting in New York 1999
And then of course after Jeff Sterling gets a big anti fraud case 32 million dollars in 2009, he gets shivved in the back by Andy in 2010
And just to recap of yesterday was it was another big day
Ten videos started out with the Gritz fundraiser again, we're up to about thirty three thousand dollars now,
Of course I have no part whatsoever to do this
This is really to just provide a level of confidence for Robin she's currently employed a lot of times employers don't like people to come forward as a whistleblower, especially against the FBI
So this gives every dollar lets Robyn basically be more honest about actually what's happening inside this cabal
This is McCabe, Brennan cabal to affect change
And this is really our whole democracy we don't get this kind of CIA death grip on the throat of American democracy or constitutional republic whatever what-have-you it's not going to get any better
So unless we support the people that are being very courageous and coming forward, it's really all for naught
We could have all the discussions in Congress that we want
The permanent seat of Government really is the FBI and the CIA by extension
So we talked a little bit about the Gritz files in the first episode what we're really talking about is all the cases
And how it kind of pieces together the Iran deal by looking at the career of Robyn Gritz you can kind of get some great metadata in taking apart the Iran deal over the last since the year 2000 I would say
And of course. we had a couple of episodes where we reacted to the episode with a Jason and Quinn--musing that I lived in a Hearst Castle Museum...
Oh No it's true this Hearse have a summer home here in Chicago, but I trust trust me it's not here
There was some good things that came out of that which was Quinn talked about my dad's invention, and the whole idea of a repeater, which became kind of the cell tower, which made you think of Iridium, it made you think of Nellie Ohr, it made you think of Imran Awan
It made you think of Muhammad Muhammad Awan having a company called Blue Sky Link for Iridium it made you think of Blackberry and BlackBerries Iridium phones
And Iridium stations
And managing ratlines
So in a sense it just kept it all this kind of noise or whatever keeps pointing back at the fundamentals of our channel
And also you think of Muhammad Tahir Awan
And you think of Space Eyes, and Channel logistics and Al Waleed
And all those things that were put together in brahim all those things were put together to manage this ratline going to Pakistan
So it's kind of good every time even though it's a little bit of noise, but some there was some signal there to
Quinn especially provided a lot of signal as far as radio technology goes
Of course we kidded about the Patty Hearst being in in our basement here
But again, it reminds us of the NXIVM cult in San Francisco
And how they were bringing how the old bootleggers kind of became the new drug runners
So if we follow those old bootleggers rat lines, the old Capone ratlines, kind of leads us right to today's current drug ratlines, which is which is helpful and instructive
Coming through here in Chicago coming through Montreal in Canada coming through the West--where it kind of migrated
Where that Nexium Seagram's fortune kind of migrated across the United States during Prohibition
And those same drug racket lines are still in place of course Cuba to Florida being a famous drug ratline and bootleg ratline as well
We quickly went into drilling down on the Gritz files though for for these centrifuges
And we've kind of looked at these key steps along the way in the development of the Iranian nuclear program
They had an IR one which that did a certain efficiency up to about 3,000 centrifuges in 2007
Then the program kind of took off with these new reactors or new centrifuges which you could do double the amount of Uranium
These IR2s then we went into IR4s
And even though we had events like Stuxnet--public events--what was really happening was different groups are coming out and exposing these different facilities
And as these were being exposed, it kind of forced the FBI to come forward, and say, "hey we did something"
Well it turns out that the one-fifth of the reactors or excuse me the centrifuges they took out we're probably these old ones that were failing anyway
And they were putting in four times more productive centrifuges while doing that
So again, it was kind of a little bit of a shell game
Now, we're putting in the IR8s which are at least eight times more efficient up to twenty times more efficient
So the Iran deal that says that they're reducing from 20,000 to 14,000 centrifuges is really another shadow, shell game, because they're eight times as efficient as the old IR1s
So we learned a little bit about centrifuges--that was kind of good
We learned a little bit about Saberi, the Robyn Gritz case going to the Gritz files and how this woman went over and studied in Iran
But then also how her father was involved in the nuclear industry
Was she a cover a go-between because she was caught with classified information in Iran
And also the father being involved in the nuclear industry--was that the go-between--was that the channel--was that the funnel?
Was Robyn Gritz getting close to that? with her team in Tehran
Is that why she got yanked out by Gaddis? Is that why?
We we stopped in at Loop Capital because it's always Loop Capital we'll go a little bit forward here it's always fun to stuff in a Loop Capital, and they have this crazy art
And I don't know if people seen it up close, but they have this crazy art in the Denver Airport
I think of the CIA's old play with Black Panthers, and trying to migrate that to kind of the Black Muslim movement, and how that really didn't go very well, and they had to kind of shut it down with Malcolm X...
And kind of made the shift to bringing a kind of Muslim radical into the United States, kind of take over the port cities, and then the major inland ports as well
And this kind of--artwork here at the Denver Airport kind of shows that that
This these flower of these use--she'll die by this is not Islamic sword here
There will be a great gnashing of teeth will have to use--automatic weapons if need be
There'll be a lot of innocents that die
But we'll be sure to Fentanyl them
And the our squad will have a lot of fun before they die
It'll be this gnashing of teeth
But then out of that will come kind of this rebirth
And then we'll have the--the society as we want it
And this is Loop Capital's artwork in the Denver Airport
There's no other reason to have these panels in this kind of progression, other than just tell that kind of story
There is no other explanation
But it's a very logical explanation
We took a little bit of look at Raisa Sabiri the father
And then the potentially Saberis brother being in the nuclear industry
And being kind of nuclear go-betweens we'll get more into that story later
And finally I'll finish off with Robyn Gritz here almost a $33,000
That number was almost a number was about seven sixteen thousand seven hundred
We've got here about five days ago
So we're very happy with that but again, if we really want to shame take advantage of the one chance we have a unhooking the Cabal of McCabe and Brennan
Here's our chance
We can't have an economic sort of Damocles hanging over Robyn's head all the time
If she had more confidence in the in this go rainy day fund, she could do even more in terms of taking down this this cabal
Hey day 173 this is part 2 sears tower behind us what if you put an antenna on that I bet you could talk to them you could talk to them pretty easy
I think the phones are a little bit lighter than this, but not much back in 1973
But this morning obviously the false flag in Syria seems like everyone's jumping and taking the bait with Trump and Mattis
And everybody no nobody's verified anything yet every network is saying war war war
What are your thoughts Task Force?
TF: my thoughts are this is exactly peat of what happened last time that chemical attack happened
Right when... why would Assad now, use chemical weapons when the president's talking about pulling out
Y-yeah he's deescalating---that it makes no logical sense that happened the exact last time
G: And Mike Morell strikes again, with Gouta and Allepo
TF: And the chemical weapons that Hillary Clinton was a part of moving from Libya to Syria. People need to think about that
G: This series does not repeat itself
But it sure does rhyme
I remember doing the story on Shifa Gardi, the story on Serena Shim, the story of Vanessa Beasley the story on--all the seem for some reason only the women can tell the truth
I don't know what the heck's the story here with the journalists
But no no verification whatsoever, and all of a sudden it's Putin's fault
Trump as well: I mean he jumped in on the bandwagon
So I think they've got to get inspectors in there, and look at the chemical signatures, and the TAGGANTS before Andy gets into the evidence room--
I knew this would probably happen you close in on the AWANS, and then false flag
It just it just seems that's the whole way through this investigation
TF: Right and also Donald Trump makes moves that are for on behalf of America, in trying to pull our troops out of kind of crazy stuff and calm the situation down, and you have the automatic false flag, and then you get the Senators that all want war jumping on the bandwagon
G: immediately, almost like they were lined up for a school photo shoot
TF: exactly this happened last time
We even have pictures of John McCain over there and there's now, a picture that was released today of John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and Marco Rubio over there
G: With a Syrian emergency Task Force, can you believe it? SEFT, not sift, not sift Americans all of their money
And here's this guy named what is his name Musa Musa?
TF: And then Marco Rubio is holding their flag
G: Yeah it's nice to see Marco holding the flag
And also it reminds me so much of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights you always want that guy being an oil executive from five generations of oil families, picking out who are the really cute kids at the white helmet shelter for the White House to go in
Again, I think we're gonna get a whole nother round of white helmets
TF: Right. it's a it's an exact repetition
G: Is George Clooney getting this hair combed right now, ready for another white helmet shoot?
TF: Probably win another oscar for...and it's already been exposed by many journalists at the white helmets are actually--they're fake they're going in and taking these children << G: Sid Blumenthal's Son>> Right these orphans are hiding in--basements, and they're being trafficked
G: And if you're if you're an ugly kid, get ready to be an organ donor
Well I tell you what: I knew what would happen sooner or later as we closed in on the Iran
Oh by the way Iran says they're going to start enriching again,
We're not way ahead of the news anymore only slightly ahead of the news here on the George Webb and Task Force Channel
And you may have correctly surmised that actually you by the reflection in the window, I'm standing next to the Calder--it's not a Picasso
No wonder the white luxury car did not pick up my Bitcoin for Rahm
But you can also see within the shadow, and within a reflection of the Flamingo, you could see the Masonic symbol
The Masonic symbol clearly, right?
TF: The all-seeing eye
G: we've got it all
Just to remind you, as the US attorney, that you have a larger group to report to
You have an SES core group: not just SES, but a core group that you answer to
That you take a vow to
To help them among all others, forget about the temporary occupants of the White House
So here it is this is the Flamingo
I think we're at the end of the Flamingo
I think we should get away from this end of the Flamingo it's quite dangerous
So so this is Calder--it has a Picasso esque feel to it because it's contorted
Its contorted and cubic, a lot like our news currently
And this is the place if you're not tired of contortions
This is a place Federal center, where Attorney General Bower will be in charge of disseminating the documents that Congress has been waiting for over a year--over a year
But no: three million documents: we still need to mete them out, eyedropper them out, one thousand at a time
We need a double check triple check quadruple check you got it--what is that commercial double check with what's-his-name the coach?
Well I guess Andy McCabe didn't really bother about double checking when he was leaking to the Washington Post, and leaking to the New York Times, and leaking to The Wall Street Journal
Fusion GPS certainly didn't use a double triple or quadruple check
Comey didn't yeah Comey at the White House, certainly didn't have any kind of checking.
He just gave it to a professor in New York, and said, "hey I wonder what you could do with this privileged communication"
So again, but when it's them well it's then being investigated no no no double triple check
And worse yet Bauer I'm sorry Lausch I think of Bauer because of Lausche is such good friends with Bill Priestap, who is a co-conspirator
So this is almost as good as Barsoomian
Lisa Barsoomian being Bill Clinton's lawyer, with having Rod Rosenstein being in charge of the Trump investigation
TF: And Lisa Barsoomian is Rod Rosenstein's wife. LB is DOJ attorney, FBI attorney, CIA attorney, rep. Bill Clinton in impeachment and she's Rod Rosenstein's wife, who is in charge of this investigation.
G: She was the she was the IC the Intelligence community shot-blocker--she was the shot blocker
TF: She's called the FOIA stopper!
G: she's the FOIA stopper, she's the shot blocker
So we've got that conflict
Now, we've got another one here with Bill Priestap
We came down to say, if you need the help of a true FBI professional, and you can get Robyn Gritz
And you could bring in a 100 FBI agents
There's 54 here working on the documents supposedly
We haven't had the first 2000 documents yet
They say they're working from 8 a.m. till midnight
No no contact through the press release through the press officer yet, about the first thousand documents
But we'll write it out here
Hopefully we'll get a visit from maybe Bernie Bridges
TF: Yeah I think she's going to show up today
G: maybe Bernie bridges will have a sign saying Rao state Robert Gritz for the documents
And we are broadcasting live from the ostrich well actually it's a flamingo
But it's an ostrich because it has its head in the sand, because it's not producing the documents as quickly as possible
Just breaking on Fox we have 3600 documents, now, sent over to Bob Goodlatte House Judicial Committee
Not good enough
He needs three hundred thousand
They all have classified clearances--that's the oversight role of Congress they must immediately send those 300 thousand documents
We don't need to two million seven hundred thousand lunch menus added into the grist
Just send the three hundred thousand documents that you're required by law
It's been over one year over one year
Now, we have a lot of late-breaking things coming out of Iran
A lot of late-breaking things coming out of Syria
Your latest thoughts Task Force on the chemical attack on Saturday, and now, the response by ROMs maybe Rahm phoned in the air strike maybe--phone call
TF: Genie Energy
And it seems like they're trying to start a shooting war there was a attack on a t4 base in Middle Syria
Of course duma being extremely close to the old weapons of the big chemical weapons attack about four years ago, near Damascus
I sincerely doubt that Assad would attack its own people a few miles from his capital
TF: And the town is a rebel-held town, and who gave them the chemicals? Hillary Clinton did, we did, they were from Libya
G: And this is a golf course almost you can play out of your same divots
You're gonna see atropine or a TRO is it atropine atropine?
The chemical--what I call antidote for being handed out along with gas masks to our Isis partners
Putin has been through this wringer before
This is old school this is just another false flag
The immediate strike by Israel against Iran is interesting, though, because--as we talked about earlier--the Iran nuclear enrichment plant program they have now, said they're going to restart
Why? Because even though we went from free Senator of huges in 2007 up to 20,000 during the Clinton years
(And I'm going to call in the clinton years because she was Secretary of State)
The agreement was to drop down 6,000 drop down 6,000 centrifuges right
But what was missed in that is if you like power at two you're gonna love the Iranian centrifuges IR2 double the capacity
IR4 quadruple the capacity
IR8 goes up to almost 20 times capacity
So the throughput was dramatically in staggeringly increased even though the total number of centrifuges on paper looks like it's going down
So is this shooting war by Israel gonna be the entree now, to attack Iran?
That's the key question here
Is this just a stepping stone is a serious stepping stone for the Iran thing?
This I believe is the beginning of Rahm actually
I mean to me this looks like Rahn just phoned one in to the Israeli Air Force
I can't believe that that Bibi Netanyahu's going along with us
But your thoughts?
TF: yeah I I can't believe they just going along as either and I just--I just think we just keep seeing this time and time and time again, and where it's--it's the rebels that we backed we armed we gave weapons to it's in documents that while Hillary Clinton Secretary of State the chemical weapons were taking it from Libya moved into Syria
And every time President Trump or tries to remove forces or draw down or do something for the American people, then there is this chemical attack or something to try--to start some sort of Wars
G: And it looks like Trump is taking a step back from the animal thing
And the immediate response to look a little bit more at the data
"We'll stay here at Faisal headquarters with the flamingo's had in the sand with the document production"
Will give you live updates of any documents that are produced as they are produced here at Lousche Castle
We're here at the Lousche castle
Let's not beat allow about it let's move move move
Let's get these documents moving if we have 54 agents working 16 hours a day
I say magnify that group by 10 or a hundred whatever it takes to meet your Congressional requirements
You can't just go on vacation for a year and then come back to a stack of paperwork, and then go well we're gonna do one paper a day no it doesn't work like that
That's a Congressional responsibility--separation of powers
Lousche it up, baby
Stack it up fill this building with FBI agents
Have ramen Robyn Gritz bring in all of our friends whatever it takes fulfill your obligation to Congress
OK it's day 173 Oh our fireman is gonna join us sir come here
And introduce your impromptu video
You're a fireman from Nassau County yeah in Long Island I believe?
Several friends in the 911 situation yeah friends...and you're here at a Burn Convention the American burn Association is annual convention
And what do you what do you hope to achieve here when you're while you're
FM: I'm a director of a firefighters Burn Center Foundation what we are here to learn is how better to work with the Government to get funding for us
How better to work with medical personnel, so we can know what sort of efforts we should getting into as far as purchasing of equipment
What are the needs...
G: have you heard of this nine one nine bill in Congress?
FM: No I haven't
G: you want to tell this fire fighter here oh yes you remember Margaret Not Your Turn to Burn from DC?
Well she's here in Chicago at the Chicago Hilton at the bird convention here she is
NYTTB: HR 919 is the portable fuel container Safety Act
And it is in Congress it's stuck in the Energy and Commerce Committee meeting
That subcommittee is headed by Robert Lada and Jan Schakowsky from Mt. Prospect Illinois
NYTTB: We're trying to get that bill through Congress, because we need to get it passed
G: let me see if I got this right: So a small container on the end of a gas can could save
A flame arrestor
Could save 4,000 kids being burned because if this keeps the gas cam from turning into a flamethrower right?
NYTTB: right. So Tom hadn't heard about this bill we want to make sure Tom's at least heard about
So first time we want our fire directors to know that HR 919 has been in Congress now, for over a year, year and a half
And we just need to try to move this bill along
And what it does is it says Consumer Product Safety Commission you've got to protect consumers, because OSHA protects employees, and DOD protects military, why is it that we're letting kids in school and all these consumers and family gatherings
And homes get burned to the tune of 4,000 of them a year which is unfreaking believable and
Now, this is a burn conference Europe obviously professional fighter fighter
G: And a lot of volunteer firefighters here as well as volunteer fire oh you are a volunteer
So thank you again, yes and we just--you just meet firefighters everywhere here and
So it's and I was in I was in New York during that period
So it was just it was much closer to the act--like a year out from that
So it's memories are very clear
So the one thing that there was a lot of surgeons here
There's a lot of burn surgeons here
NYTTB: yeah yeah the American burn Association is every quite a type of professional that works with burns
So it could be ot PT burn surgeons fire guys we our fire service does a tremendous amount for burn survivors and families
And they are a large source of hope
And they are there on our worst days in our darkest days
And they help us get back to healing and hope and surviving and thriving so
So so real quick you tell us about your if you're involved in a charity or a burn center that you work with just a shout out a plug?
FM: well the burn center we work with is our own Nassau County burn center it's in the Nassau University Medical Center
It's the only level one trauma center in Nassau County
If you are getting seriously burned in Nassau County, Western Suffolk, or Eastern Queens, that is where you are going
And our goal is to make sure that the level of care and the equipment there is the best that it could possibly be
So we engage we bring nurses here for education
We come here we learn about devices that we can purchase
And we also engage in burn education which is ties in with what Margaret is doing here--it's a lot of what we do is provide educational material to the people in our county to make sure that they do not become patients in a burn unit
NYTTB: I want you to show what I'm sitting on so they can understand why my hiney hurts
So we're gonna let her down kind of impaled upon this metal stump
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