Protests Over the Army's Gaming Center

Anti-war activists rally to unplug a high-tech recruitment facility in PA.

1 min read

From Doom to Full Spectrum Warrior, the military has long been using videogames to train and recruit soldiers.

Last year, Philadelphia saw the opening of the Army Experience Center, a 14,500 square foot facility that, according to its site, is "a twenty-first century destination for people to get accurate information about the Army directly from the source. Conceived and built over a ten-month period in the Franklin Mills Mall in Philadelphia, the and education center is fast becoming a model for Army recruiting nationwide. Touch screen kiosks, state-of-the-art presentation facilities, community events and high-action simulators are just a few of the AEC features helping to shatter outdated stereotypes and start new career conversations."

But the AEC is now a subject of protest.  A group called the United for Peace and Justice-Delaware Valley Network has been holding vigils outside the center, accusing it of using games to lure kids into joining the military.  "War is not a game," the group has said in a statement.  They hope to convince the Franklin Mills Mall to shut the facility down.

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Deep Learning Could Bring the Concert Experience Home

The century-old quest for truly realistic sound production is finally paying off

12 min read
Image containing multiple aspects such as instruments and left and right open hands.
Stuart Bradford

Now that recorded sound has become ubiquitous, we hardly think about it. From our smartphones, smart speakers, TVs, radios, disc players, and car sound systems, it’s an enduring and enjoyable presence in our lives. In 2017, a survey by the polling firm Nielsen suggested that some 90 percent of the U.S. population listens to music regularly and that, on average, they do so 32 hours per week.

Behind this free-flowing pleasure are enormous industries applying technology to the long-standing goal of reproducing sound with the greatest possible realism. From Edison’s phonograph and the horn speakers of the 1880s, successive generations of engineers in pursuit of this ideal invented and exploited countless technologies: triode vacuum tubes, dynamic loudspeakers, magnetic phonograph cartridges, solid-state amplifier circuits in scores of different topologies, electrostatic speakers, optical discs, stereo, and surround sound. And over the past five decades, digital technologies, like audio compression and streaming, have transformed the music industry.

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