VOL. 39 | NO. 9 | Friday, February 27, 2015
Ferris Hall is an unassuming brick building on the edge of the University of Tennessee’s College of Engineering campus and home to the Department of Materials Science Engineering. There, Drs. Ramki Kalyanaraman and Gerd Duscher have opened the door to applying the magic of Hogwarts to military camouflage, cancer treatment or even Halloween costumes for a new generation.
Dr. Jason Valentine, assistant professor of both mechanical and electrical engineering at Vanderbilt University, got his start in cloaking research as a graduate student at the University of California, Berkeley.
Researchers like Dr. Rami Kalyanaraman and Gerd Duscher, associate professors of materials science engineering at the University of Tennessee, could not develop cloaking devices or work to achieve true invisibility without the use of metamaterials. But what are these fancy new materials and how do they work?
Dr. Ramki Kalyanaraman, associate professor of materials science engineering, and his colleague Dr. Gerd Duscher at UT are not the only people working to develop cloaking technologies.
VIEW FROM THE HILL
Momentum is building this session for voucher legislation that would allow state dollars to follow students from struggling public schools to private and religious institutions.
Legislation by Sen. Lee Harris requiring local governments to hold a referendum before they take on “extraordinary” debt could run into opposition from his own City Council and municipal leaders across Tennessee.
In six weeks or so, the Greater Nashville area will learn what a snowmegeddon can do to area home sales.
Top January 2015 commercial real estate transactions for Davidson, Williamson, Rutherford, Wilson and Sumner counties, as compiled by Chandler Reports.
Charles “Chuck” A. Grice has been hired to the Public Finance team of Bass, Berry & Sims PLC.
KNOXVILLE – There is a bronze statue of legendary Tennessee women’s basketball coach Pat Summitt standing proudly across the street from Thompson-Boling Arena.
BEHIND THE WHEEL
For 2015, Volkswagen’s best-selling vehicle, the Jetta compact sedan, builds on its fine road handling character and adds a nicer interior, freshened front and rear styling, new safety features and a more fuel thrifty diesel engine.
The press release was written with no mistakes, explaining all the virtues of your company’s remarkable product. It was sent to all the newspapers and TV stations, and you even managed to send it to select radio stations and bloggers.
When’s the last time you thought of yourself as a brand? If you were a car, would you be a Ford or a Mercedes? Would you be a SUV or a convertible?
If there’s one adjective that does not fit “Parenthood,” NBC’s six-season series that shuttered its doors in January, it’s symmetrical. Great show! I hate to see it go. But it was out of balance. Always. And delightfully so.
KAY'S COOKING CORNER
Fajitas and nachos. These are two of my favorite Mexican dishes, so why not combine them?
NASHVILLE (AP) — Gov. Bill Haslam says there should be more open conversations about race and that there are means of discussion other than Facebook.
NASHVILLE (AP) — A private group called the Tennessee Task Force on National and Homeland Security is holding a closed-door briefing for lawmakers at the Capitol on Wednesday.
NASHVILLE (AP) — A proposal to create a school voucher program in Tennessee is advancing in the House.
NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee State Library and Archives is offering a free workshop on researching Nashville history.
GENEVA (AP) — Volkswagen's functional Passat family car may have taken top honors as car of the year at the annual Geneva motor show, but there is no doubt what visitors come to see at this glitzy gathering: high-end supercars.
FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — In Europe, SUV now stands for: Shrinking Utility Vehicle.
WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. businesses added more than 200,000 jobs in February for the 13th straight month, a private survey found. It was the latest sign that strong hiring should boost the economy this year.
WASHINGTON (AP) — From the United States to Asia to Europe, a global economy that many had feared was faltering appears poised for a resurgence on the strength of cheap oil and falling interest rates.
NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks are opening lower, putting the market on track for a second day of losses.
TUESDAY, MARCH 3
NASHVILLE (AP) - Even former vice presidents get called for jury duty.
NASHVILLE (AP) — Several potential Republican candidates for president are scheduled to speak at the National Rifle Association's annual meeting in Nashville in April.
NASHVILLE (AP) - Corrections Corporation of America could not be sued anywhere in Tennessee except for the county where the private prison targeted by the lawsuit is operated, under a bill filed in the state legislature.
NASHVILLE (AP) - The Federal Communication Commission ruled last week that cities like Chattanooga may expand their municipal broadband service, but Tennessee officials who oppose the decision are lining up to block the move.
NASHVILLE (AP) — A committee has been formed to develop lesson plans and teaching aids based on information contained in the Tennessee Blue Book.
NEW YORK (AP) — New York City lawmakers have peppered city officials and company executives with questions about the quality of health care at Rikers Island jails.
DETROIT (AP) — Freezing temperatures and drifts of snow took a small bite out of U.S. auto sales in February, but most automakers still reported gains thanks to the strong economy.
GENEVA (AP) — Top automakers are vowing not to give up on weak-selling electric vehicles — even as they unveil an array of powerful luxury cars with conventional engines aimed at a growing global market.
GENEVA (AP) — The CEO of Volkswagen AG is staying with his cautious outlook for this year, saying it's a "balanced statement" based on growth in the U.S., Europe and China versus trouble spots such as Russia and Brazil.
NEW YORK (AP) — High-end smartphones from Samsung and HTC have gotten much of the attention at this week's wireless show in Barcelona, Spain, but cheaper options are coming from Microsoft, Lenovo and others too. Meanwhile, Google and Facebook are working on giving people more ways to use those devices.
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — BlackBerry will launch four new smartphones this year and a new package of cross-platform applications as it continues its "philosophical" shift to making software.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The world's central banks are injecting a new complication into the Federal Reserve's decision on when to raise interest rates from record lows:
NEW YORK (AP) — The U.S. has so much crude that it is running out of places to put it, and that could drive oil and gasoline prices even lower in the coming months.
NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks fell from record highs on Tuesday and the Nasdaq dropped below 5,000 a day after passing that milestone for the first time since the dot-com era 15 years ago.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans controlling the Senate have moved to try to reverse a new National Labor Relations Board rule that would shorten the time between a union's request for representation and the vote on whether to certify a union.
MONDAY, MARCH 2
NASHVILLE (AP) - The Tennessee Legislative Black Caucus is continuing a call for action to be taken against a Republican state lawmaker they say made a racist Facebook post.
NASHVILLE (AP) - Tennessee regulators expect 270 stores across the state to be among the first wave of supermarkets to sell wine under a new state law going into effect in July 2016.
NASHVILLE (AP) - A new task force will review student testing and assessment amid concerns that students are being overtested, the state Education Department announced Monday.
NASHVILLE (AP) - A state agency that defends death row inmates is being criticized for using taxpayer dollars to pay for a legal battle that seeks information on the drugs and people involved in executions while also challenging a law that says electrocution can be used as an alternative to lethal injection.
NASHVILLE (AP) — The Grand Ole Opry House has been honored with a spot on the National Register of Historic Places in recognition of its impact on popular culture and the entertainment industry.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — For its next technological trick, Google will show you what it's like to zip through trees in the Amazon jungle.
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Sci-fi solutions or making friends one at a time? Google and Facebook are taking different routes to expanding Internet use and access among the unconnected in developing countries.
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Google will soon be offering cellular network plans in a bid to bridge the gap between the realms of Internet services and mobile device software it dominates.
NEW YORK (AP) — Samsung, locked in a tight race with Apple to be the world's biggest smartphone maker, has unveiled an important new phone that ditches its signature plastic design for more stylish metal and glass.
WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. construction spending fell in January, reflecting weakness in spending on office buildings and other nonresidential projects and in government activity.
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — As Florida's housing market tanked seven years ago, construction worker David Rager saw jobs dry up. So he left construction, along with 2.3 million others nationwide during the economic downturn, and got a job installing traffic signals and street lights.
NEW YORK (AP) — The Nasdaq composite closed above 5,000 for the first time since its dot-com era peak nearly 15 years ago after merger news and an encouraging economic report helped push U.S. stocks broadly higher on Monday.
NEW YORK (AP) — The last time the Nasdaq was this high, Bill Clinton was president, your Internet was probably still dial-up, Microsoft dominated the tech world and the iPod, iPhone and iPad didn't exist.
NEW YORK (AP) — Costco says it struck a deal for Citi to be the exclusive issuer of its co-branded credit cards, with Visa replacing American Express as the card network.
WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. factories expanded last month at their weakest pace in a year, with orders, hiring and production all growing more slowly.
NEW YORK (AP) — The world's richest person got even richer this year.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Consumer spending fell for a second consecutive month in January, weakness that was expected to be temporary. Income rose, reflecting strong job gains during the month.
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Billionaire Warren Buffett won't end speculation about his eventual successor, but he reiterated that Berkshire Hathaway's board has a plan in place.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress' dysfunction isn't limited to the struggle to keep a Cabinet department running without interruption.
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 27
NASHVILLE (AP) - Tennessee public television stations are airing a new show about the happenings in the state Legislature.
NASHVILLE (AP) - Some Republican lawmakers still reveling in the recent defeat of a proposal to expand Medicaid coverage to 280,000 low-income Tennesseans are now setting their sights on 230,000 people enrolled through the federal health insurance exchange.
NASHVILLE (AP) - State Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey said Thursday that it may have been "a mistake" for Tennessee to subsidize the development of the General Motors plant outside Nashville because it has a United Auto Workers union contract.
NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee Legislative Black Caucus on Thursday called on Republican Rep. Sheila Butt to apologize for what they said was a racist Facebook post, and said she should be removed from her leadership position.
NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee exported $33 billion worth of goods and services last year — a record amount for the fifth year in a row.
NASHVILLE (AP) - Tennessee is kicking off a steady stream of visits from potential Republican presidential candidates.
NASHVILLE (AP) — The director of the Tennessee Literacy Coalition says the nonprofit organization that has promoted reading education for over three decades will close this year.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans signing contracts to buy homes rose at a healthy pace in January, a sign that home sales are poised to accelerate after a slow start to the year.
FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — German automaker Volkswagen says after-tax profits rose 21 percent for last year, to 11.1 billion euros ($12.4 billion).
DETROIT (AP) — Fiat Chrysler is adding more than 467,000 Dodge and Jeep SUVs worldwide to a recall from last year to fix a potential stalling problem.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Even if it never wins another award, "House of Cards" already ranks among the most influential series in television history.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Netflix, Twitter and Internet activists have won. Big cable has lost. At least until the federal courts get involved, when everything could change. Five things you need to know about the Federal Communications Commission's vote Thursday to enforce "net neutrality" rules for the broadband industry:
WASHINGTON (AP) — Internet activists declared victory over the nation's big cable companies Thursday, after the Federal Communications Commission voted to impose the toughest rules yet on broadband service to prevent companies like Comcast, Verizon and AT&T from creating paid fast lanes and slowing or blocking web traffic.
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The Federal Communications Commission says city-owned broadband companies can expand and compete with commercial Internet providers.
CHICAGO (AP) — Millions of Americans have a big personal stake in next Wednesday's Supreme Court challenge to the nation's health care law: Can they legally continue to get subsidies to help pay for their insurance? If the court says no, people across more than 30 states could lose federal subsidies for their premiums.
February proved to be a strong month for U.S. stocks, even though it ended in downbeat fashion.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Harsh winter weather left U.S. consumers feeling a bit less confident this month, the University of Michigan says. But confidence levels still remain at the highest level in eight years.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy slowed more sharply in the final three months of the year than initial estimates, reflecting weaker business stockpiling and a bigger trade deficit.
WASHINGTON (AP) — In the ever-complicated debate over labeling of genetically modified foods, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack offers this idea: Use your smartphone.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican leaders eager to avert a partial government shutdown are getting heat from conservative colleagues who ask what the fuss is all about.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Loretta Lynch won approval from a key Senate committee Thursday to serve as the nation's next attorney general, as divided Republicans clashed over her support for President Barack Obama's immigration policies.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Two days before a partial agency shutdown, House Speaker John Boehner repeatedly refused Thursday to say if the House will vote on pending Senate legislation to fund the Department of Homeland Security without challenging President Barack Obama's immigration policy.