No. 432: Prescription strength, making census, name that emu – and #hashtag, you’re it

Dream on: Known best as the title mystic in the 1960s sitcom "I Dream of Jeannie," actress, singer and "Worst Cooks in America" contestant Barbara Eden turns 88 today.


Home run: Pick ’em up and put ’em down, dear reader – it’s Friday and you’re rounding third on this latest summertime trip around the socioeconomic bases.

Dormant: Sure, Mount Vesuvius looks nice NOW.

It’s gonna blow! It’s Aug. 23 out there, and if you had Mount Vesuvius getting a rumbly tummy on this date in 79 AD – on the feast day of Vulcan, Roman god of fire, no less – correctamundo! Twenty-five silver denarii for you.

Better spend it fast – the volcanic caldera in what is now called the Gulf of Naples erupted violently the next day, bad news for the towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum. (And with that … ladies and gentlemen, the great Jimmy Buffet!)

Totalitarian recall: Today marks the 10th anniversary of the European Day of Remembrance for Victims of Stalinism and Nazism – a.k.a. Black Ribbon Day, renouncing the evils of extremism and the intolerance of all oppressive regimes.

It’s also National Buttered Corn Day.

Sherman is sighted”: That was the first ship-to-shore wireless message in U.S. history, sent and received on Aug. 23, 1899, after Lightship No. 70 spotted the troopship Sherman approaching San Francisco.

Vital link: Helping drivers get a grip since 1904.

Locking it up: New York inventor Harry Weed patented his “Grip-Tread for Pneumatic Tires” – a.k.a. snow chains, wrapped around wheels for wintry driving – on this date in 1904.

Other U.S. patents issued on Aug. 23 include two in 1892 for two unrelated inventors and their very different wrenches: Texas innovator John Hoval’s now-familiar “Nut and Bolt Wrench” and Pennsylvania tinkerer William Dechant’s unique “Pipe Wrench.”

On Gossamer wings: With champion bicyclist/hang-gliding enthusiast Bryan Allen kicking in about one-third of 1 horsepower, the Gossamer Condor soared 1.15 miles during a 7-minute-plus flight on Aug. 23, 1977, establishing maneuverable manpowered flight as a thing.

#originstory: And the symbol previously known as “pound,” “the number sign” or “the little tic-tac-toe thingy” officially became the ubiquitous “hashtag” in a Twitter post on this date in 2007.

Astley Cooper: Honestly, a bit of a hack.

Cut up: Sir Astley Paston Cooper (1768-1841) – a radical and rather infamous English surgeon remembered for experimentation, body-snatching, daily dissections and impressive results – would be 251 years old today.

Other Aug. 23 birthday boys and girls include French zoologist Baron Jean Léopold Nicolas Frédéric “Georges” Cuvier (1769-1832), the “father of paleontology”; British physicist William Eccles (1875-1966), a pioneer of radio communications; American chemical engineer, inventor and industrialist Bradley Dewey (1887-1974); iconic song-and-dance man Gene Kelly (1912-1996); and Barbara “I Dream of Jeannie” Eden (born Barbara Jean Morehead, 1931).

General, admiral, trailblazer: And take a bow, Vice Admiral (Ret.) Antonia Novello – the Puerto Rican physician, longtime Public Health Service Commissioned Corps. officer, one-time commissioner of the New York State Department of Health and first woman (and first Hispanic) to serve as U.S. Surgeon General turns 75 today.

Wish the award-winning pediatric nephrologist – praised by the Republican and Democratic presidents she served – and all Aug. 23 innovators a happy birthday at And did you catch LIMBA leader Ernie Fazio’s op-ed this week on the folly of limiting immigration to the wealthy? Socioeconomic commentary always welcome.


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Annette gain: A nationally recognized nursing educator, scholar and researcher with more than 30 years of professional experience has taken the reins of Stony Brook University’s School of Nursing.

Annette Wysocki, most recently a professor and associate dean for research at the University of Massachusetts Amherst College of Nursing, became the new dean Aug. 1. The author of more than 50 scholarly publications and recipient of numerous National Institutes of Health and National Science Foundation grants earned her PhD in nursing from the University of Texas at Austin and completed post-doctoral research fellowships at the University of Texas Southwestern and Weill Cornell Medical College.

She also directed nursing research for the NYU Medical Center and headed up multiple NIH programs, including a stint as scientific director of the National Institute of Nursing Research – an impressive résumé worthy of the SBU nursing school, according to SBU Senior Vice President of Health Sciences Kenneth Kaushansky. “Annette was chosen from an incredibly talented pool of national candidates … because of her clear vision about the future of our School of Nursing,” Kaushansky said this week.

Surprised you’d suggest it: Do I look like a “Kevin” to you?

Bird brains: A Long Island not-for-profit on a mission to encourage science literacy among youngsters is offering visitors a uniquely fine-feathered opportunity.

The Rockville Centre-based Center for Science Teaching & Learning is hosting a “naming contest” for its newest arrivals: two young emus that have joined the owls, pheasants, goats, alligators, lizards, turtles and frogs in the People’s United Bank Animal Adventure – along with the museum-quality models of “Dinosaurs!,” one of the CSTL’s most popular attractions.

Entry cards with proposed names for the flightless emus – the second-largest living birds by height, after their close relative, the ostrich – will be accepted in person throughout September, with a public announcement of the winning names scheduled for Oct. 5. “Emus are a popular part of our new animal exhibition,” CSTL Director Ray Ann Havasy noted Thursday. “But they need names.”



Count on it: With a damaging undercount likely, regional rainmakers are stressing the importance of the 2020 Census to Long Island’s economic future.

Prescription for success: Adelphi University has inked another joint-admissions pact, this time with a top college for pharmacy sciences.

Rarified Aero: Even without a one-time, million-dollar tax benefit, Edgewood’s CPI Aerostructures soared through its second quarter.



Brain-mapping at the Feinstein Institute, clean living at Stony Brook University.



Innovate LI’s inbox overrunneth with inspirational ideas from all North American corners. This week’s brightest out-of-town innovations:

From Washington State: Spokane-based biotech for beasts Genetic Veterinary Sciences adds cats and birds to its genetic-testing suite.

From Canada, eh: Halifax-based security startup Byos introduces a plug-in spyware protector for traveling computers.

From Washington: A D.C.-based coalition of scientists, biotech entrepreneurs and public policymakers targets antimicrobial superbugs.



Edward Cruz

+ Edward Cruz has been named director of residence life at Farmingdale State College. He previously served as assistant director of residence life and housing at SUNY Oswego.

+ Port Jefferson-based Mather Hospital has appointed two new members to its Board of Directors: Sylvia Diaz, master social worker and executive director of the Suffolk County Community College Foundation, and Marvin Colson, clinical associate professor and director of developmental disabilities programs for the Stony Brook University School of Social Welfare.

+ Uniondale-based Rivkin Radler has announced two new hires: Colleen O’Neil, who previously served as a litigator at O’Melveny & Myers in Manhattan, is now an associate in the Fraud Practice Group, and Michael Twersky, who served previously as counsel at McDermott, Will & Emery in Manhattan, is now a partner in the Banking, Corporate, Real Estate, Zoning and Land Use groups.

+ Centereach-based Briscoe Protective has promoted David Miranda to chief operating officer of commercial services. He previously served as vice president/general manager.

+ Frank Iovino has been hired as chief revenue officer at Centereach-based Briscoe Protective. He previously held the same position at Pennsylvania-based My Alarm Center.



Clean slate: Rocketbook’s reusable notebook.

Elementary: Back-to-school gadgets every student needs (at least wants).

High(er) school: One Maryland school district is battling racial “tracking” by putting everyone in honors classes.

University: How to avoid the dreaded “freshman 15.

Graduate level: Please continue supporting the amazing firms that support Innovate LI, including Ruskin Moscou Faltischek, where dozens of practice areas always make the grade.