Last year it was held in Reno. The year before that in the burgeoning technological research hub of Charlotte, N.C. This year, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers — the world’s leading professional association for the advancement of technology — is bringing its annual Virtual Reality Conference to Lafayette. The event comes to the Cajundome Convention Center March 14-18, thanks in large part to IEEE senior member and event chair Dr. Carolina Cruz-Neira, chief scientist at UL Lafayette and, until recently, executive director of the Louisiana Immersive Technologies Enterprise. The event is expected to draw some 350 attendees and showcase LITE and Lafayette’s fiber-to-the-home project for some of the world’s preeminent virtual reality and 3-D user interface experts. For more info, visit http://conferences.computer.org/vr/2009 .
Sure Shootin’. Rep. Ernest Wooten is back with a vengeance, once again taking aim at college campuses’ firearm free zones. His bill to allow college students to pack guns in their backpacks got shot down last year, but Wooten is vowing to return for another showdown in the Legislature this year. The proposal has drawn near unanimous opposition from campus police, faculties and student bodies across the state, but Wooten still thinks it’s high time our universities return to the good old days of Wild West vigilante justice. If the Legislature has any sense, this bill will be dead on arrival.
Apparently perturbed that a SafeSpeed van had tagged him for speeding Friday night as he drove down Ambassador Caffery Parkway, 42-year-old Douglas A. Begnaud of Scott allegedly approached the van and began yelling at the operator. When the operator opened the door to the vehicle, Begnaud allegedly grabbed the operator, then returned to his truck and rammed the speed van multiple times, pushing the van into a ditch. On Monday morning Begnaud turned himself in and was charged with simple criminal damage to property and simple battery. Let’s just say SafeSpeed reps had very little doubt the alleged perp would be caught. “The violator left before police arrived,” SafeSpeed’s customer relations manager, Christina Barnes, wrote in a Saturday e-mail to LCG’s Tony Tramel notifying him of the incident. “But we captured his plate and a good face shot, which the police are already using to help locate him.”
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APR 18 So Gov. Jindal's new press secretary already has blocked blogger CB Forgotston from her Twitter account, CB tells us in this post. Sure, CB hasn't exactly been sugar sweet to the lady, but if his blogs are all it takes for her to get in a huff she better find some intestinal fortitude somewhere, because that's just the tip of the iceberg.
APR 18 Pooyie! Robert Kennedy Jr. isn't pulling any punches in this column on Huffington Post about the flood board's lawsuit against Big Oil and Bobby Jindal's involvement in efforts to kill it. Kennedy, who is president of the Waterkeeper Alliance, describes Jindal as 'genuflecting to Big Oil's pressure' and 'the industry's chief indentured servant.' Dang!
APR 18 Here's a video of UL Coach Mark Hudspeth showing he can pump some serious iron. It sure impressed the Dr. Saturday blog, which calls his press of 370 pounds a "ridiculous" number for a coach -- and opines that no other college coach could beat ours.
APR 18 Columnist John Maginnis offers some advice to Vance McAllister on this post: Don't quit. Republicans have demanded he resign, but offer no "sensible answer" to the question of why David Vitter shouldn't leave, too, he says. McAllister needs to do his duty and serve out his (abbreviated) term, Maginnis says.
APR 18 Blogger Lamar White Jr. comments upon the plan to make a Bible Louisiana's "official book" in this post. He argues his point by telling us the story of an immigrant couple who moved to Louisiana: Amar and Raj, whose oldest child is now our Governor. This action would have a much larger impact, he opines.
APR 18 There's only one major bill left defending public education, blogger Mike Deshotels writes in this post. He's also got a few choice words for state Superintendent John White, who implies that Louisiana teachers would be thrown into chaos and disarray if they didn't have a test to teach. (Maybe kids would actually get an education then? Nah!)
APR 18 An effort to set up speed cameras on the Interstate has been shut down before it even got started, columnist Stephanie Grace tells us in this post. A bill to block the practice is sailing through the legislature -- where apparently no one wants visitors to our fair state to arrive home to a ticket. (These guys must never drive on I-10 with people from Texas).
APR 18 Blogger Tom Aswell reassures everyone worried about the staffers for Rodney Alexander -- the ones who didn't go to work for McAllister or Candid Camera, anyway -- with this post. Apparently one staffer for the retired Congressman (who also worked for a preacher accused of sexual assault) already has been hired by Alexander in the state department he now runs, Aswell says.
APR 17 At the start of the Tuesday board meeting that ended with his removal from the President's post, Joe Aguillard told the governing board of Louisiana College that SACS, the accreditation agency, requires the board to adopt a confidentiality agreement regarding board actions. Later that day, SACS told the Town Talk that confidentiality agreements would never be required. Calvinist or not, isn't lying wrong?
APR 17 Here we are, looking like backwater dummies again in the national media. This story on Huffington Post tells the nation that our legislators are so scared of the Louisiana Family Forum that they won't vote to repeal a law that was ruled illegal years ago. (Guess these particular Christians don't cotton to that "love one another" thing.)
APR 17 Here's an interesting column from Paul Stanley, political opinion editor of the Christian Post. He breaks down the differences between David Vitter and Vance McAllister, in terms of political realities. What he found surprising was the fact that many GOP leaders are swinging a self-righteous sword at McAllister which had remained sheathed when Vitter's "sin" was revealed. He does have an interesting theory -- that Jindal's people want the Vitter issue to be revived.
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