Corrections or additions?
These articles by Kathleen McGinn Spring and Bart Jackson were prepared for the June 25, 2003 edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.
Interactive TV: Is It Finally Coming?
On December 1, 1977, Warner’s QUBE, opened for business
in Columbus, Ohio, as the world’s first commercial interactive television
service. It worked well and subscribers seemed to like it. But it
was too expensive to operate and was discontinued. In December of
1994, Warner tried again — this time digitally — with the
"Full Service Network" in Orlando, Florida. Though once again
popular with many subscribers, it was closed three years later due
to high costs. Yet Europe seems to have made versions of interactive
This information comes from
solutions for Newton Gravity Shift, a media company at 2425 Pennington
Road. He has rounded up interactive TV experts to talk about the future
of new television on Wednesday, June 25, at 6:30 p.m. at a meeting
of the Princeton Media Communications Association at Newton’s offices.
Cost: $24. Call 609-818-0025, ext. 146.
So, with all the advances in technology, is this country finally going
to get to experience interactive television?
of Digital Video Arts (www.dval.com), a subsidiary of SeaChange International,
digital ADCO subsidiary of ACTV, answer the question at the PMCA meeting.
Both work on developing the software for cable settop boxes and cable
headends that enable aspects of interactive television.
With over 25 years of product development and management experience,
Breen now heads the television industry’s only development firm exclusively
dedicated to digital settop box software. Under his direction Fort
Washington, Pennsylvania-based Digital Video Arts has been commissioned
to develop software applications for six of the companies listed in
Kagan Research’s "Big Seven" of interactive manufacturers,
equipment providers, middleware vendors, and programmers.
Breen was one of the inventors of DVI technology at Sarnoff. This
technology was the first commercially viable digital video technology.
Breen also worked for early computer companies, including Commodore
Computer, before starting his own consulting firm.
Sheehan has over 20 years of experience in the design and development
of real time multitasking software and hardware systems. For the past
eight years, he has concentrated on the field of digital television
settop boxes. Sheehan has worked with several real time multi-tasking
embedded kernels including OS-9, PSOS, VxWorks, and several proprietary
specialty operating systems. Most recently he served as the director
of settop box software for ACTV (www.actv.com), where he managed
the engineering group that developed the ACTV interactive television
application currently being certified by Motorola and Scientific Atlanta.
Sheehan’s current work involves the targeting of specific advertisements
to specific demographic groups.
All art is designed, at least in part, to persuade.
The message may be overt, as is generally the case with an anti-war
poster or a perfume ad. It may be more subtle, as is the case with
a still life that entices you to view fruit in a new way. The artist’s
mission is to take a message and wrap it up into an eye-catching presentation.
Few artists do as well at blending message with intriguing depiction
illustrators (See examples on his company’s website, www.Pushpininc.com)
Anyone who has an interest in graphic art, advertising, or the art
business will want to attend Chwast’s talk, "Power to the Art
Director," on Thursday, June 26, at 10:30 a.m. at Sarnoff. Cost:
$85. Register at www.NJCAMA.org. The New Jersey chapter of the Communications
Advertising and Marketing Association (CAMA) hosts Chwast — and
many other speakers — as part of its fourth annual conference.
Chwast, who grew up in the Bronx and Coney Island, took a great interest
in the art of the street. He received his first formal training at
the age of seven in a Depression-era WPA writing project. Then, in
1948, he entered Cooper Union, but chaffed under that institution’s
In l954, after several less-than- fulfilling stints with the New York
Times, Esquire, and Conde Nast, Chwast was ready to put his own ideas
into play. Joining with Edward Sorel and Milton Glaser, with whom
he had studied at Cooper Union, Chwast founded Push Pin Studios.
"We had no capital and fortunately very low rent," recalls
Chwast. When times were good, the partners might take home $25 a week.
"I think a turning point came with our promotional magazine `Push
Pin Graphics.’ People saw it and liked our style," he says.
It is difficult to envision a collection of graphic design and illustration
that would not contain Chwast’s work. He has created more than 100
posters, many of which have been shown in the Metropolitan Museum
of Modern Art and the Library of Congress. He has illustrated more
than 30 children’s books and several animated films, and has launched
scores of buying frenzies with his clever ad campaigns though he is
the first to admit that it was Glaser who came up with the famed I
Love New York campaign.) He has been elected to the Art Directors
Hall of Fame and awarded an honorary Ph.D. by Parsons School of Design.
Chwast still runs his firm, now called Pushpin Group, and says he
devotes most of his creative time to "illustrating several children’s
Before advertised messages of the type that Chwast’s shop creates
breaks, it must pass back and forth between a client, an account executive,
and an art director. If the entire advertising process stays in-house,
the CEO, the ad manager, and the creative person fill the same triangular
roles. While artist-patron resentment is ancient and cliche, Chwast
says the ad development process can, if well managed, be a cooperative
a message. The ad agency fleshes out the message, and then turns it
over to the art director and his staff. The art director must envision
the best way to take the message to the public. His delivery can be
clever or artistic, but neither cleverness nor fine art can be his
goal. Once the prototype advertisement is completed it requires review.
Like scientific theories, advertisements demand substantial input
from many sides before they gain acceptance.
While this flow chart of roles and duties is scarcely new or complex,
there is a tendency to try to short circuit it. Clients often hold
up a vision and want to use art directors as mere sketch artists.
Ad agencies often allow themselves to be bound by rules of current
ad-fashion. The art director can help the process, Chwast says, by
keeping a constant flow of sketches and ideas circulating.
from the beginning of his career. Steven Heller of the American Graphics
Arts Institute noted that Chwast’s "strength is not in the rendering,
like so many sentimentalists before him, but in the concept and design.
He always expresses a beguiling sense of humor."
Whether you are the actual artist or the art director uniting several
efforts, if you have established your style, the client and agency
are less likely to be surprised by the final product. But this does
not mean that the art director can be inflexible. The message, and
not his creative style, must hold sway.
art director should act as liaison between his artistic staff and
the clients," says Chwast. The more constant he keeps the flow
of communication between the two groups, the less likely it is that
resentment will occur. The technology is currently so advanced that
the creative staff can do two or three retouchings on call, right
in house, along with the total typesetting. In former days, Chwast
remembers, all such changes used to have to be ferried back and forth
by messengers, which took a lot more time and allowed positions to
become a lot more entrenched.
Technology allows all parties to view the developing ad as an ongoing
process, rather than as a flat item to be rejected or approved. The
result is a smoother process through to final approval.
"Some things are just not illustrateable," says Chwast. "For
example, how do you portray the security provided by fire insurance?
All too typically, we turn to the negative side — a huge picture
of a burning house." But for those art directors who can portray
an abstract concept in a novel way, a host of clients awaits.
— Bart Jackson
Prospective teachers now have an alternate route to
certification. Mercer County Community College (MCCC), in partnership
with the New Jersey City University (NJCU), is one of the New Jersey
community colleges that will offer an intensive program to prepare
alternate route teachers for the classroom. The training begins on
Monday, July 7, through a program called "New Pathways to Teaching
in New Jersey."
MCCC hosts a free information session on Thursday, June 26, at 6 p.m.
at its West Windsor campus. Call 609-586-4800, ext. 3281, to register.
Program participants will be able to earn 15 graduate credits awarded
by NJCU, or they can register as noncredit, certification-only students.
There are three program components; this summer’s Pre-Service program
(Phase I), the Core program (Phase II), which runs from September
through May, 2004, and a Capstone Summer Institute in June, 2004.
The summer Phase I program requires a bachelor’s degree with a minimum
GPA of 2.75. It introduces students to the realities of teaching as
a career and focuses on needed skills and classroom management. At
the end of the summer, participants may continue in Phase II if they
are employed as an alternate route teacher, or if they are continuing
with the program for graduate credit and have obtained a certificate
of eligibility from their county superintendent and have access to
a hands-on teaching experience with children.
All aspects of the curriculum will build upon the Master of Arts in
Teaching (MAT) degree available through NJCU.
Sprawl is big — literally as well as figuratively.
It presses on aspects of New Jersey life as diverse as epic traffic
tangles in Home Depot parking lots, families of dislocated deer trying
unsuccessfully to cross freeways, economic and racial segregation
in public schools, and rising tax rates. Governor McGreevey has declared
war on sprawl at a time when few state residents are able to escape
On Friday, June 27, a People’s Summit for Regional Equity takes the
measure of sprawl in New Jersey and offers solutions for reining it
study, New Jersey Metropatterns, at the event. Other speakers are
without Suburbs, and
Institute at Ohio State University. The event takes place at 10 a.m.,
at the Douglass Student Center. For more information and to register,
The summit is sponsored by the New Jersey Regional Coalition (www.regionequity.org).
Members of the coalition include Isles, New Jersey Future, the Coalition
for Affordable Housing and Environment, and the New Jersey Public
Policy Research Institute (NJPPRI). Co-chairs are
of Isles and
New Jersey Metropatterns, which examines the state’s demographics,
concludes that a tendency toward low density development pushing ever
farther into the state’s remaining undeveloped land is hurting communities
in every economic strata. Here are some excerpts:
is an extraordinary state. It is by most measures both the most densely
populated and the most suburban in the nation. It is the only state
in the nation to be considered entirely "metropolitan" by
the U.S. Census Bureau. Its development patterns are shaped not only
by its own cities, but also by proximity to two of the nation’s largest
cities. Although slow growing compared to the rapidly growing Sunbelt
states, it is among the fastest-growing states in the Northeast. The
state has the highest median income, the highest school spending per
student, and among the highest housing prices in the country.
Despite its overall wealth, New Jersey is not immune from patterns
of social separation and sprawl that strain all states. Its communities
are profoundly divided by income and race. Geographic stratification
is threatening every New Jersey community — from the most impoverished
to the most affluent. It has already had devastating consequences
for the poor, leaving many of them trapped in segregated neighborhoods
with limited economic and educational opportunities. Now it has begun
to diminish the quality of life and opportunities of working and middle-class
residents. The rising waves of protest against congestion and the
loss of open space suggest that no group — not even the wealthiest
suburbs — is fully satisfied with the status quo.
classifications that divide the state into cities, suburbs, and countryside
are increasingly out of date. As the heart of this report is a more
complex typology of New Jersey’s 566 municipalities. This classification
systems takes into account a variety of social, fiscal, and physical
characteristics of each place.
The classification system shows that a growing number of New Jersey
suburbs are struggling with stresses typically associated with large
cities. There is a group of suburbs with significant and growing poverty
in their schools and weak tax bases. There is another group of slow-growing
places with few social needs, but whose property tax bases are below
the state average and falling further behind. And a large group of
fast-growing, middle-class suburbs is struggling to provide the schools
and infrastructure it needs with just average resources.
governments in New Jersey are highly dependent on property tax revenues
to pay for public services — everything from parks to police and
fire services. In fact, New Jersey municipalities receive 52 percent
of their total revenues from property taxes, compared with just 27
This reliance on property taxes is pitting local government against
one another in a fierce competition for tax-generating developments
or "ratables." Under intense pressure to both maximize revenues
and minimize costs, communities seek out developments that produce
more in taxes than they cost in services. Over time, this process
has concentrated households with the greatest need for public services
in communities that are the least able to generate sufficient revenue
to provide them.
New Jersey’s residents, bedroom communities, including West Windsor,
are defined by rapid growth. With their higher-achieving, middle-class
schools, newer, spacious homes, less congestion, and — at least
initially — lower tax rates, these places appear to offer an alternative
to declining communities at the core.
But the speed and scale of growth brings its own stresses — requiring
huge investments in roads, sewers, and schools that often strain even
the hardiest tax base. As communities grow, valued open space is lost
to development and traffic congestion makes getting around more and
more difficult. The way the state is growing, the same problems driving
people from at-risk developed municipalities may gradually reappear
in many bedroom-developing places.
Although this group does include several employment centers, as a
whole these places have relatively few jobs, and their workers have
the longest commutes of those in any community type.
Home to just 9 percent of the state’s population, these prosperous
suburbs, including Cranbury, have a large share of the state’s expensive
homes, plentiful commercial and industrial development, few social
strains, and relatively low tax rates.
In fact, with the highest concentration of jobs per resident worker,
and the lowest free-lunch rates of any community type, affluent places
appear to reap all the benefits of regional competition with few of
the costs. Their already low share of poor students fell slightly
in the 1990s. Their tax bases, on average, are over twice the regional
average, and growing considerably faster. Their moderate rate of population
growth assures that they can keep up with needed infrastructure without
overtaxing local resources.
But the opportunities of these places are limited to only a lucky
few. Only 14 percent of their housing units are affordable to households
making 80 percent of the regional median household income or less.
Although they are attracting a deep and growing pool of jobs, high
housing costs mean local employers may have problems attracting low-wage
of extremely expensive second homes, resort communities, including
Sea Girt, Cape May, and most of Long Beach Island, have extraordinary
property wealth. Home to just one percent of the state’s residents,
resort communities have tax resources that are eight times the statewide
average and have been growing three times faster than those of the
state as a whole. With tourism-based economies, resort communities
have a relatively high and fast-growing ratio of jobs to residents.
Keep the cape in the closet. At least for the first
three months on the job. Coming on like Superman can be a mistake
for the newly-hired, says career counselor
have two eyes and one mouth," he says, tongue only a little in
cheek. "Use your eyes twice as much as your mouth."
On Tuesday, July 1, at 7:30 p.m. Sutaria speaks on "How to Survive
the First Weeks on a New Job" to Jobseekers, a free informational
and networking group for the unemployed, organized by
author of the Princeton Management Consultants Guide to Your New Job.
Sutaria, founder and president of Union-based CareerQuest (www.careerquestcentral.com 908-686-8400),
specializes in working with Gen Xers looking for career satisfaction,
middle-aged executives and professionals hitting a wall, and over-50s
trying for a place in a youth-oriented workplace. He also does outplacement
Sutaria himself is a career changer. His undergraduate degrees, from
the University of Bombay and the University of Poona, were in electrical
and mechanical engineering. His graduate work, however, tilted toward
the management side of engineering. Still vaguely dissatisfied with
his work, he signed up for extensive career counseling at Stevens
Institute. There he discovered that he was cut out to be a teacher
or a psychologist or maybe a rabbi.
Already volunteering as a counselor at Marble Collegiate Church in
Manhattan, he figured that career counseling was close enough. He
began his business shortly thereafter, first calling it New Life Career
People change jobs for any number of reasons. Sutaria says he was
surprised when his 27-year-old son, Norman, a graduate of Syracuse
University, decided to ditch a career as a photojournalist. "He
did well," says the young man’s father. "I thought he would
like it." But, in the newspaper business, Sutaria points out,
"it’s always bad news." Tired of chasing ambulances, and of
hours that left no time for a social life, his son enrolled in a master’s
program that he hopes will lead to a career as a teacher. Meanwhile,
the ex-journalist’s younger brother, Dale, has left a job in computer
graphics to try his hand as an E-commerce entrepreneur.
Unfazed by these career zigs and zags, Sutaria says that the statistically
average Gen Xer will have four or five careers — not just jobs,
but careers — over a 40 to 45-year work life. For Boomers, it
might be just three careers. But it is clear that nearly every worker
can expect a whole lot of first days on a new job.
Most, says Sutaria, will not be prepared to put down the groundwork
that will lead to a good run. Worse still, a good many will set the
family photo on a desk where they are immediately unhappy.
"I tell all of my clients to do due diligence before accepting
a job," he says. "Ninety-nine percent of people do not do
this." Employers scope out their new hires, he points out, and
the new hires need to engage in some investigations of their own.
"Arrive half an hour early for a job interview," he suggests.
Use the time to observe interactions — and to covertly gather
information. Is the atmosphere formal or informal? Do your future
co-workers engage in pleasant conversation as they pass one another?
Do they appear to respect and like one another? Can you see yourself
dressing the way they do? Do you think you would fit in?
Ask to use the rest room, and engage anyone who happens to be there
in conversation. Spend a little time in the parking lot, too. If possible,
collect a few phone numbers. Ask employees how they like the company.
"At a Merck or a J&J, you find happy campers," says Sutaria.
The same may not be true at some other large companies and at any
number of small and mid-size companies. Better to find out before
signing on. Making a quick — and graceful — exit soon after
starting a job is not easy.
If the job is not what it was supposed to be or what you envisioned,
or if it is clear that unethical practices are the norm, it is essential
to get out fast. Otherwise, it is important to settle in smoothly.
Sutaria offers these tips:
they appear on the surface," says Sutaria. Every office has a
power structure, and it probably has little to do with the pyramid
on the letterhead. "There are alliances you don’t know about,"
he says. Sit back and observe.
company has its own mores. Your goal as a new employee, says Sutaria,
is to "be absorbed without making waves."
idea to put your own ideas for projects on hold and pitch in to help
others with their work. Do so, and you will be accepted as a team
to whom you should report. Does the boss welcome questions? Or does
he prefer that queries go through his assistant? Does he prefer E-mail
to voicemail, or does he like to have his underlings drop by for in-person
chats? Is it okay to float ideas in other departments?
and then there are unofficial lines of communication. The latter are
by far the best, says Sutaria. If you want to know what is really
going on, hook into the grapevine. Doing so requires an ability to
be a good listener, and to respect confidences. "Don’t back-bite,"
advises Sutaria. "Don’t pass on gossip. Be non-judgmental. Be
non-moralistic." Strive to be trusted, and the grapevine should
open wide enough to let you in.
in the first weeks on the job. Apologize to your immediate boss, and
get on with your work, says Sutaria, who has observed a tendency for
public self-flagellation. Spreading the word that you goofed up, even
in private conversations after hours, can badly damage your reputation.
illness mean that you have to be late for work, tell only your immediate
boss about the situation, and even then, give him only the most basic
information. Talking at length about the kids’ brushes with the law
or going into detail about a parent’s health problems are not a good
idea. Says Sutaria, "your personal life is strictly off limits."
to meet 20 people or more. Sutaria keeps a tiny diary in his pocket
and discreetly records names of people he meets. He suggests that
new employees do the same. Another way to get the names down is to
collect business cards. There are also memory programs that teach
techniques for memorizing dozens of names. Whatever the method, he
says that learning names quickly helps the new employee stand out.
Greet co-workers by name on your second day on the job, and they will
be impressed, he says.
lot a half hour early, and then leave a half hour after the official
work day ends (but make sure you know the company’s alarm system first).
"That makes a tremendous impression," says Sutaria. Keep this
up for several weeks, and you will be seen as a hard worker. First
impressions tend to stick.
details on the contributions you make to the company. Come review
time, or an interview for a new job, and it will be difficult to remember
just how much money you saved the company through which project. Sutaria
insists that it is essential to keep a file of written notes for each
and every project. He has even created an acronym for this — PAR
— "What was the problem, what action did you take, and what
was the result."
Bring your PAR file along on your performance review and it will be
a help not only to you, but also to your boss. If it is difficult
for you to remember all of your contributions, how much more difficult
is it for your boss, who has lots of other things on his mind?
ease the way into a new job. And second, by focusing on establishing
a solid reputation, it paves the way into the inevitable next job
by upping the odds of getting stellar recommendations when the time
comes to move on. By then, you will have earned the right to wear
— Kathleen McGinn Spring
Here’s a second job that pays good money and offers
a change of pace — umpiring. You may need to have played the sport
in high school or college, and you may need to take a course or pass
a test, says
the one he plans to teach at Mercer County Community College. His
class starts Monday, July 21, at 6 p.m. and continues for three more
class sessions plus practice in umpiring evening camp games. Cost:
$42. Call 609-586-9446.
Maloney was a track and field star at Moorestown High and was attracted
to field hockey as a team sport at Westchester University (Class of
1978). He played men’s club hockey on the East Coast and practiced
with the women on the Westchester team, coached by a former Olympic
coach. He played on the Olympic level at the USOC Olympic Festival
in 1982 and coached in later years. A certified instructor, he has
been coach, sectional umpire, regional director and coach for the
United States Field Hockey Association’s Futures program, and is the
founder of the Garden State Games Field Hockey Event.
Maloney moved to Princeton so his wife could teach at Princeton Day
School and he worked on the Dow Jones campus with Dow Jones Interactive.
Now he is a real estate agent with the Princeton Real Estate Group
and sells college selection software to high school guidance departments.
Field hockey is the exception to the "must have played" rule.
You don’t need to have played it to be an umpire, Maloney says. You
can substitute your knowledge of another sport, like soccer. Games
are held in the fall in the afternoon, and the pay is $40 an hour
in the first year. Says Maloney: "In your second year you could
earn over $100 in a single afternoon."
Refereeing — in field hockey or in other sports — is an excellent
way to keep in shape while bringing in extra income. It can also be
a fine networking tool, making it especially appealing for anyone
who is between jobs, or who just wants to keep his name — as well
as his blood — circulating.
is requesting proposals from companies in the communications and marketing
industry for a one-year, $5 million campaign to promote the state
as a home for business.
The campaign will highlight assistance available to businesses from
the Commerce Commission and from NJEDA programs to help with business
financing and real estate development needs. The objective is to increase
the number of businesses locating and growing in the state, with an
emphasis on life sciences, logistics, and high technology.
NJEDA will make the request for proposals available at its offices
next Thursday, June 26, at noon. The request for proposals can also
be downloaded at www.njeda.com/mp.
NJEDA will take questions from bidders at a pre-bid conference on
Tuesday, July 1 at its office. Wednesday, July 23, is the closing
date for proposals.
Corrections or additions?
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