The star studded audience contained 1 percenters who reneged on promises to leave the country if Hillary Clinton lost th

of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. Linebackers Jamie Collins and Christian Kirksey, running backs Isaiah Crowell, Duke Johnson and Terrance Magee, safety Jabrill Peppers, tight end Seth DeValve, wide receivers Kenny Britt and Ricardo Louis and defensive back Calvin Pryor dropped to one knee pittsburgh steelers jerseys in a circle.

Chicago Inc. Just like butt stuff. He is a 20 plus carry per game back with power. It’ll be interesting to see whenTyrel

the penalty exacted by law but to the penalty exacted by the profession itself.

After encountering two shoeless men who were begging at a stoplight, Levy, a former sneaker sold his collection of 150 pairs and donated the proceeds to two of the city homeless charities. They just don’t get the cynical, whiny, political antics of people with such good fortune.

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You see, as Americans we’re indoctrinated from a young age to drop whatever we’re doing, place our hands on our hearts and race to the nearest flagpole every time we hear The Star Spangled Banner playing 40 miles away. It’s embedded in our national psyche it’s what we do. And that’s part of the reason fans have spent the last year and a bit literally calling t shirts that look like football jerseys for Kaepernick’s head..

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Included for each player in this list will be his “dead money” on the 2016 salary cap. That is the remaining unamortized bonus money that accelerates immediately onto a team’s salary cap when a player is cut. For those players cut before June 1, all of that bonus money goes onto the current year’s cap.

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The question for the is how competitive will they be in 2017? If the loss at Buffalo last week is any indication, they answer is they won’t be very competitive. Quarterback Josh McCown’s performance was shaky at best leading a stumbling offense. The defense, which struggled to stop the Bills run game, was called out by coach Todd Bowles during practice this week..

Gilmore, a native of South Carolina, spent his career with the Bills after they drafted him 10th overall in the 2012 NFL Draft. If Butler does re sign with the Patriots, however, it does make a formidable 1 2 punch at the cornerback position. With Devin McCourty and Patrick Chung at safety positions, the Patriots secondary looks very scary, which makes sense since this team is already looking scarier than they were in 2016..

This has nothing to do with race or anything else. This has to do with respect for our country, and respect for our flag. Also denied that he wants his supporters to boycott the NFL.. The farmer’s carry is a popular kettlebell exercise since it mimics how a farmer might carry two buckets of milk or water. “You have to have proper posture to carry the kettlebells,” says Ken Croner of Munster (Ind.) Sports Performance, who has worked with numerous NFL players. “In fact, it’s almost impossible to get into position to do the farmer’s carry with bad posture.” Kettlebells have handles more similar to a bucket than a dumbbell or weight plate, so they’re perhaps closest to a true farmer’s carry.

After Britt and Coleman, this group is filled with questions. Louis got the second most catches (18) among last year rookies. Wright had 13 catches and two starts last season with the Bengals. I did not want to make this decision, but it became inevitable when the Seattle Seahawks, after flying Kaepernick across country to meet with the team, instead decided to sign Austin Davis as their backup quarterback. It’s a disgrace. I sincerely want to apologize for how hard I am about to go against Austin Davis, because it’s great that he got the job, but the man is a scrub..

Green Bay running back Ty Montgomery is listed as doubtful to play because of broken ribs after getting hurt in last week’s win over the Chicago Bears. Back up back Jamaal Williams, who hurt his knee in the same game, is available to play in Dallas. Receiver Davante Adams is also listed as questionable he remains in the concussion protocol following a helmet to helmet hit by Bears linebacker Danny Trevathan..

Mahomes: “Has great arm talent, but he’s another one you’ve got to dig into who he is as a leader on your football team. I think leadership is the big question you have about him. Is he a good leader? Do people like him? Do they follow him? Do they think he can do all the things that you have to be to be a great quarterback or is he just blessed with arm talent? You’ve gotto figure that out.”.

Utah congressional delegation and top state leaders vowed to work to get the monument repealed. Zinke recommendation to downsize it to a yet to be determined size came after he toured Bears Ears in May and met with Gov. Gary Herbert and others who oppose the designation.

“We also hosted free football clinics for more than 1,500 area schoolchildren in the park,” McCarthy said. “ESPN and NFL Network went live for the week of the draft from sets on site inside the theater and also out in the park. Our hotel needs alone in Chicago were 1,000 rooms for draft week.”.

He was a little wild but so are a lot of them. We didn think anything of it. That first summer and fall, Hurst worked on mechanics, lifted weights, ran and rarely threw off a mound. The referee usually earns the highest compensation as the leader of the team of officials. Because the SEC is one of the two or three highest “profile” football conferences, many of its “minor” officials earn more than referees in smaller, lower revenue conferences. Although people often call all officials “referees,” there is really only one referee for each team of officials in high school, the NFL and college football.

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The latter group is without precedent in recent American history when it comes to aversion to accountability, which is perhaps a consequence of the fact that this generation has been coddled to an extent that was previously unimaginable. This generation of twenty somethings has been repeatedly told that they are the best, a result of the “everyone is a winner” philosophy that has pervasively spread from its appropriate place in kindergarten art classes to Harvard economics classes (don’t believe me? Two words: “grade inflation.”)..

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I got a bit of money for doing the commercial, and a year worth of Duracell batteries when I heard about the year worth of batteries I was like, Yes! because I was buying my own batteries by then, not my parents. So that was worth a lot right there. I grasped that there was a bigger reason for doing the commercial, too, although its full impact didn dawn on me right away.

Some, such as former NFL defensive coordinator Marvin Lewis, who became head coach for the Cincinnati Bengals, move on to head coaching gigs. Bureau of Labor Statistics. But big money professional sports pay coaches much higher salaries. The company has stepped up its efforts to cooperate with investigators after it was criticized for not taking congressional. 13, 2017″ > >Weinstein rebukes pile up; brother says movie business as usual >The chorus of Hollywood stars denouncing film producer Harvey Weinstein echoed across the Atlantic on Friday, even as his brother said the embattled production company that bears both their names insisted business was “continuing as usual.” Bob Weinstein, co chairman of The Weinstein Co. Issued.

An aspiring NFL coach needs to show a track record of success. How you do it is up to you. Every coach has a unique story.How to Become an NFL CoachGain knowledge through years of study, either as a player or coach, at an advanced level. Alecia Benson and her brother Tony Benson smile in an undated photograph. (Courtesy of Stan Coleman)At Utah State, Hall started the season opener at linebacker as a true freshman. He built a reputation as a quick learner and one of the team most punishing tacklers.

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Yeah in the past, game developers used to do so much more with less technology. But Madden is one of the few games I’m really into especially because I play in tournaments both online and in person. The competition gets really fierce but it’s fun at the same time.

After he announced his retirement, something unexpected happened. Rather than deride his decision, fans and fellow players alike encouraged what St Louis Rams defensive end Chris Long called a “logical” decision. “WOW,”Long tweeted late Monday. Running back Mark Ingram of the New Orleans Saints ran for 52 yards on eight carries and caught four passes for 24 yards in a 36 20 loss to the New England Patriots. Ingram broke a 28 yard run on the last snap of the game. Ingram passed George Rogers into second place on New Orleans’ career rushing list Sunday.

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Eric Dickerson holds the single season record with 2,105 yards in 1984. Thank goodness the nice folks at the SEC didn’t put Alabama on the schedule.. Once the commissioner has done all of these things and everyone has signed up and named their team, this league is ready to start the draft..

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Brady was nearly picked off by Corey Moore on a deep bid for Cooks on second down, but the safety couldn hang on to the ball as he hit the ground.. But there’s a proposal from the NFL’s competition committee that would make those types of blocks which are often utilized in a zone blocking schemes illegal.

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Classical music is not just dead. It’s undead.

Photo by Drew Triebe, http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/Bl_cvyFgfX6yhMuJw-KRRnBUtqqxPWGWFXX5fNjHwG0

Daphnis et Chloé et Brains?

Classical music, as everyone knows, is either dying or dead.  This has been the case pretty much since its inception – a point neatly illustrated by my friend and colleague Andy Doe in this New Yorker infographic yesterday – but the last fortnight has seen an alarming blur of doctors, nurses and amateur diagnosticians rushing around classical music’s still-twitching corpse trying to decide just how dead it really is.

The patient was wheeled in last week by one Mark Vanhoenacker, whose prognosis (published in Slate) was fairly definitive: ‘Classical music in America is dead‘.  Politely disagreeing was the aforementioned Andy Doe MD, who proceeded to tear Mr Vanhoenacker’s article into itty bitty shreds before dropping the mic and walking off stage.  The Washington Post’s Anne Midgette let us know that even engaging Vanhoenacker on this subject was merely stooping to his level, and that there were probably merits to both sides of the argument anyway.  Then the New Yorker stepped in to remind us that predictions of the death of classical music are as old as the genre itself.

I don’t really have anything to add to this centuries-old debate, except to offer this slightly left-field proposal.  Instead of arguing over whether classical music is dead or alive, how about we simply accept that it probably died at birth, and has since joined the ranks of the living dead?  A kind of zombie artform which shambles along unaware of anything beyond its own desire to consume our brains.

Indeed, if you think about it, classical music has much in common with your common or garden-variety zombie:

The best thing about this idea is that we already have a soundtrack for it.  Hat tip once again to the one-and-only Mr Andrew Doe, who once produced an excellent Music for the Zombie Apocalypse album.

Of course, not all of these arguments can stand up to a great deal of scrutiny.  But then again, neither can most of those made about the demise of a five-centuries-old musical tradition, and those get published all the time.  So there.

Coming soon to a classical search engine near you. . .

I thought I’d just write a quick note to tell you what we have planned for the site in the next couple of weeks.

Our development team is currently working on the latest version of our prototype website, which represents a significant upgrade to the pretty limited version of the site currently at leliomusic.com.  The new version will look superficially similar, but much has gone on under the hood.  Here’s what you can expect.

  • A significant increase in the number of recordings available.  We currently list about 150 recordings.  This will increase to around 2,000 in the next release.  This is still a very long way away from being comprehensive – and you may notice that the actual selection is a little eccentric! – but it’s a step in the right direction.  More to the point, we will be able to add more albums on a regular basis.
  • Search for a much wider range of compositions.  The current prototype only lets you search for symphonies; the new release will open searches up to all musical forms, with the exclusion of songs and opera (which have some slight technical challenges involved).
  • iTunes links: We will now feature buy links to both Amazon and iTunes!  If you use them, we will actually make a very small amount of money – imagine that!
  • Support for misspellings: At the moment, if you type Mozarf instead of Mozart, you get no results back.  In the new version, misspelled words will automatically take you to the correct page (with an option to go back to a general search results page if we got it wrong).
  • Artist imagery (we hope!): At the moment the site only features images of composers.  We are hoping to get hold of a stack of artist publicity photos to use on the site.  It won’t be entirely comprehensive, but should go some way towards making the site more visually appealing.
  • Better album titles: Currently, album titles are being pulled from Amazon’s data, leading to situations such as a listing for Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3, “Choral”.  The new site will replace these titles with automatically generated names based on the works featured and our own data.  This should be much cleaner and more accurate.  (You would not believe the amount of SQL code sitting behind this seemingly simple task, though!)
  • Lots of minor look-and-feel tweaks: Stuff you won’t even notice, but which will make the site look just a little more polished.

We’re expecting to release all of this in early February, so stay tuned for more.  And, as always, if you like what we’re doing, please share this blog on Facebook or Twitter or really any social media outlet you like.

Claudio Abbado (1933-2014)

Credit: Peter Fischli

Claudio Abbado (1933-2014) (Photo credit: Peter Fischli / IMG Artists)

Enormously sad news today: the great conductor Claudio Abbado has passed away at the age of 80.

I saw Abbado only twice.  Or perhaps I should say: I was lucky enough to see Abbado twice.  The most memorable of those occasions was when he brought his hand-picked Lucerne Festival Orchestra to the Proms in 2007.  On the programme was Abbado’s greatest speciality, Gustav Mahler, in this case the enormous Third Symphony.  In six movements, ranging in length from three minutes to thirty and clocking in at over 100 minutes in total, it takes supreme intelligence and structural understanding to bring off this beast of a work successfully in concert.  Abbado brought it off and then some.

At the time, I wrote in The Guardian that “to call this occasion a special event would be to damn it with faint praise: it was a profound musical experience and an outstanding achievement in every respect.”  The same might have been said of so many Abbado performances, particularly in his later years.  A musician’s conductor, he frequently directed applause intended for him towards his collaborators, refusing to take to the podium and instead standing side-by-side with his players.  The result was a level of trust rarely seen between conductor and orchestra, and it paid extraordinary dividends.

Today, I’m sure you will read many much finer eulogies for this great musician than I could ever write. Instead I leave you with this, the sublimely beautiful last movement of Mahler’s Third, about which Bruno Walter said:

Words are stilled – for what language can utter heavenly love more powerfully and forcefully than music itself?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thkkaUEYqJY

A classically trained search engine

Image source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jazbeck/

No, Amazon, when I say “Beethoven’s 2nd” I am not looking for a kids film about a freaking St Bernard.

As most of us who have ever tried it will know, searching for classical music online is a hit-and-miss affair.  There’s a reason for this.  Most search engines decide which results are relevant to you by matching words in your search query with words that appear in a particular web page, document or record.  The more words matched within a given document, the more ‘relevant’ a search engine believes it to be and the higher up the list of search results it will go.

The problem with this type of search is that it is fundamentally ‘dumb’. The search engine has no built-in understanding of the words you use in your search query.  It doesn’t know that a “piano concerto” is a musical form, that “Mozart” is a composer, that “A major” is a key signature, and that the “A major piano concerto by Mozart” is not the same thing as “a major piano concerto by Mozart”.

This is not terribly surprising.  Most search engines have no idea who you are, or what you are going to type into them.  In the US last year, the top ten Google searches included “Boston marathon”, “government shutdown”, “VMAs”, “new pope” and “Mayweather vs Canelo”.  That’s a pretty diverse range of topics, and no search engine could be expected to have an intelligent understanding of each of them.

The problem is worsened quite substantially when numbers are introduced into a query. This is pretty much impossible to avoid with classical music, whether you’re looking for “beethoven piano concerto 5“, “schoenberg 5 pieces for orchestra” or “corelli’s 12 violin sonatas op 5“.  Because a search engine doesn’t really understand the terms you type into it, it cannot deduce from the context what sort of number you’re looking for.  Instead, it just searches for matching numbers within its database.

The result is that a search for “beethoven symphony no 5” might yield an album of (say) Beethoven‘s Symphony No. 7 coupled with the Piano Concerto No. 5.  From the search engine’s perspective, that’s not a bad match.  From yours, it could definitely be bettered.

This inability to intelligently comprehend what you are looking for is why traditional search engines don’t really work for classical.  Completely unambiguous search terms such as the following yield completely different sets of results, even on the two biggest online music retailers:

 

 

Search Results

 

Good luck guessing which of those results sets has the particular recording you’re looking for in it!

Solving this problem has been one of Lelio’s key aims over the last 18 months.  Our search engine was built with classical music in mind from the very beginning.  We were able to do this because, unlike a traditional search engine, we know what type of information our users are likely to be looking for.  It is then just a matter of programming the search engine to intelligently interpret queries about that information.

So for instance, when you type “beethoven symphony 3″ into the Lelio search box, it understands that Beethoven is a composer, a symphony is a musical form, and 3 (in this context) probably refers to a particular instance of that musical form.  If you typed in “beethoven symphony 55″, however, it knows that there is no 55th symphony and instead checks to see whether there is a matching symphony under Op. 55 – which, in this case, there is.

Key to the efficacy of this model is ensuring that every term in our database is unique.  It’s no good having different records for “Tchaikovsky”, “Tschaikowski” and “Tchaik” (as his mates call him), when they are all synonyms for the same composer.  Likewise, Lelio will accept any of the following variants of the word “symphony”:

  • symphony
  • sinfonie
  • symphonie
  • sinfonia
  • sin
  • sinf
  • sym
  • symph

As far as Lelio’s search is concerned, all of these terms mean the same thing (and in the next release, it will also recognise misspelled variants just in case you have chubby fingers like me.) This is what allows us to return such a consistent set of results.

Why is this consistency so important, you ask?  Well, remember how the other week I blogged about Lelio’s mission to revive classical music sales?  Well, it turns out that in the world of sales, positioning is everything.  Just look at this graph showing the clickthrough rate of Google’s search results:

Optify analysis of Google top 20 search results click-through rate

What this graph demonstrates is that someone is almost three times as likely to click on the first search result they get offered than on the second – and over 16 times more likely than on the tenth.  If someone wants to buy something, it pays to ensure you’ve positioned it smack in the middle of their sight line.

With Lelio, we take things one step further. If our search engine considers your search to be wholly unambiguous, we don’t even display a list of search results: we just take you straight to the item you’re looking for.  At the moment, this is limited to composers or works, but artists and recordings will be coming in the next release.  The idea is to save you valuable time which can be better spent deciding whether you want the Furtwängler recording or the Klemperer.  (Top tip: get both!)

At any rate, we think this technology works really well and removes a big degree of randomness from the process of searching for classical music.  As I said in my last post, however, we know our prototype search engine is extremely limited – but we hope you enjoy playing around with it anyway and seeing what it could be capable of in the future.  If you have any feedback, we’d love to hear it – and please do share this blog using the buttons at the top of the post if you like what we’re doing.

(Subsistence) Living Classical

Last week I talked a little bit about the sad decline in classical sales and Lelio’s mission to reinvigorate the sector by building a new model for online shopping.  In today’s post I’m going to discuss our strategy for how we’re going to do this with no money.

Lelio is a startup, which is a nice way of saying we have no customers and no revenues.  Our coding, design work, business development, marketing, data entry and so on has all had to come out of our own pockets.  Ten or so people have contributed directly to the project over the last 18 months, some of them putting in hundreds of hours of work, and all have foregone payment in lieu of a slice of the business we hope to build together.

The whole “no money” thing does have some advantages, though.  It forces a business like ours to be highly strategic – to really pick and choose which objectives are most important to our success, and try to achieve those objectives as cheaply and as efficiently as possible.

We decided early on in the Lelio project that the key to making classical music easier to buy was to make it easier to find.  So building an effective search engine had to be our first priority.

We’re so lean we could only afford one copy of this book

The question is, how do you build a search engine from scratch with no money?  For this, we defer to the wisdom of Eric Ries’s excellent and highly influential book The Lean Startup.  Ries argues that startups, rather than trying to perfect their product before launching it, should focus on building what he calls a “minimum viable product” (MVP) and aim to get that in front of customers as quickly as possible.  The rationale for this is that no entrepreneur wants to be working in secret for two years on a product and only find out at the end that nobody actually wants it.  Furthermore, no amount of beta testing or focus grouping will tell you whether or not your product is desirable better than your customers will.

So we set ourselves a very minimal goal in order to test our thesis: could we create a search engine for symphonies only?

We chose to focus on symphonies for a number of reasons:

  • According to our market research, the symphony is the most popular form amongst classical listeners;
  • There is a fairly small group of symphonies in the standard repertory;
  • And most importantly, symphonies have abstract titles such as Symphony No. 5 in C minor, Op. 67, which would really test our search engine’s mettle.

So that’s why if you visit the Lelio prototype website today, you will our search engine only finds results for about 120 symphonies and a couple of dozen composers.  What it does do, though, is prove to us that our search works: if you type in “beethoven’s third symphony” or “eroica symphony” or “lvb sym 3″ or “beethoven op 55″ you will get the same set of results for Beethoven’s 3rd Symphony every time.  That’s already a pretty big improvement over what iTunes and Amazon can do.

Still, we know the site is still of pretty minimal use to customers.  Amazon and iTunes carry over a hundred thousand classical recordings, against which our selection of just under 200 seems pretty paltry.  Don’t worry, we know.  Nor do we imagine for a moment that classical customers are suddenly going to lose all interest in chamber music, piano music, instrumental music, song or opera and just stick to the symphonic repertoire from now on.

But as I say, we have to be strategic.  Our next release – which we expect in the next month or so – will substantially broaden the scope of the search engine.  We will have ten times as many recordings, and several thousand searchable works in the database – although still excluding vocal music and opera at this stage (sorry!).

Our hope is that this is enough to at least get a few people using the site.  That’s something we can build on, a minimum viable product.  Our next step is to seek an early stage investor to come on board and fund the next round of development.  With a little extra money (i.e. some) we can focus on building the next set of features, including:

  • A fully “clickable” journey through to our composers and artists (rather than requiring you to type something in the search box);
  • The ability for customers to write reviews and rate recordings;
  • The introduction of custom Collections (more on this in another post);
  • Many more searchable works, artists and composers.

We have plans beyond these features, of course, but I have to hold something back for another blog post.  But one thing you may have noticed is that not once have I mentioned how we will actually sell stuff on our sales platform.

There’s a reason for that.  The mechanics of shopping baskets, checkouts, payment gateways and delivery services are already tried and tested.  We aren’t planning to improve that technology, and investing in even a ‘me too’ is expensive and time consuming.  That’s why we currently use Amazon (and soon, iTunes) to handle the actual transactions.  We get only a very small cut of those sales, but at this stage all we are trying to prove is that people prefer shopping for classical music using a website that speaks their language.

We hope we are making progress on that front, and would welcome any feedback you have about the search as it stands.  Failing that, the best way you can help Lelio at this stage is to tell others what we’re working on!  There is a whole suite of sharing options at the top of this post, any one of which will help Lelio on its journey towards making the online world a better place for classical customers to buy music.