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Florida in focus: Politics and techmix at eMerge Americas

By   /   June 12, 2017  /   News  /   No Comments

Miami Herald: Politics and tech do mix at eMerge Americas

Politics may not have quite trumped tech, but it was certainly a topic on many lips Monday as Miami’s homegrown technology conference opened its fourth edition.

Former Florida governor and president candidate Jeb Bush weighed in on President Donald Trump’s tweets. Former Barack Obama advisor Ben Rhodes suggested completely reversing the relaxed Cuba policy would be unlikely. Media mogul Gustavo Cisneros proclaimed the president good for entrepreneurs. And human rights activist Jorge Castañeda Gutman called the Trump Administration’s deportation policy a human rights abuse because it separates families.

Still, the intentionally unconventional conference and expo really is about technology. A record crowd of more than 13,000 registered for this year’s showcase of trends, impacts and innovation at the Miami Beach Convention Center. The conference continues Tuesday.

Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple, kicked off the conference with tales of Apple’s beginnings and the revolution he and Steve Jobs seemed to see coming. The world was very different then; computers were limited to mainframes, and the cost of memory to hold a single song was $1 million. “We needed to find a way to make computing affordable for the people – that was my role and the result was Apple 1 and Apple 2,” he told the packed room.

Tallahassee Democrat: Bright Futures expansion rests with Gov. Rick Scott

Some 40,000 students and families are waiting to see if Gov. Rick Scott will save them a lot of money for college. Sitting on his desk is an expansion of the Bright Futures scholarship program.

The proposal would pay 100 percent of tuition to state universities and colleges and throw in another $300 for books and supplies.

“I generally don’t create rousing ovations in audiences that I speak to . . . but I’ve gotten two standing ovations,” Senate President Joe Negron said last week about the reaction he gets to the provision in an omnibus higher education bill.

More than 750,000 Bright Futures scholarships have been awarded since the program’s inception in 1997. There are three levels of scholarships awarded with the amount of each determined by how much money is available.

The state spent $217 million on the program this year. The Senate proposed a 47 percent increase to the top award, the Florida Academic Scholar, to boost the per-credit-hour award to $198 for universities and $106 for colleges.

Tampa Bay Times: Study: work-life balance not so easy for Florida dads

If you’re a Florida dad struggling with work-life balance, you may not be alone.

With Father’s Day on the horizon, financial services site WalletHub released a study Monday that ranked Florida No. 33 — below average — for how amenable the state is to working dads. The study is based on factors including the cost of child care, the health of a state’s male population and workday length.

“Today, two-thirds of family households depend on two incomes. And the contemporary dad no longer fits neatly into the standard of the married male breadwinner and disciplinarian,” the study said.