Business Facts

The Hard Rock Cafe chain is owned by the Seminole Indian Tribe of Florida

When you think of Native American businesses, you might not know what to think.

It may come as a surprise, then, that the Seminole Tribe of Florida owns Hard Rock (as in the caf restaurants).

Hard Rock was originally founded in 1971 by Americans Isaac Tigrett and Peter Morton in London. In 1979, the cafe began covering its walls with rock and roll memorabilia, a tradition which expanded to others in the chain and has come to be expected by many.

The Hard Rock business was sold to the Seminole Tribe in 2006 for $965 million. Included in the deal were 124 Hard Rock Cafes, four Hard Rock Hotels, two Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Hotels, two Hard Rock Live! concert venues, and stakes in three unbranded hotels.

The Tribe isn't going in a completely different directions than other Native American tribes. They introduced "Vegas-style" table gambling in addition to the Class II slots already in operation at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood in 2008.


The recipe for green bean casserole was created by the Campbell's Soup Company to sell more soup

Green bean casserole is a pretty popular Thanksgiving Day side dish in the United States. It consists of green beans, cream of mushroom soup, and french fried onions.

This dish was actually made by the Campbell Soup Company in 1955, probably a telling clue as to why Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup is a main ingredient.

Dorcas Reilly led the team that created the recipe while working as a staff member in the home economics department.

The inspiration for the dish was "to create a quick and easy recipe around two things most Americans always had on hand in the 1950s: green beans and Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup."

The original recipe card is now found in the National Investors Hall of Fame in Akron, Ohio.


Google intends to scan the more than 130 million published books in the world, but they are making enemies along the way

By 2010 there were almost 130 million published books in the world! In an effort to actively promote the democratization of knowledge, Google announced that it intended to scan all of the books which would total 4 billion digital pages and 2 trillion words!

Google plans to complete the project by the end of the decade, but the project is not without controversy.

Books are scanned at a rate of 1,000 pages per hour with an Elphel 323 camera and errors do sneak in. Some pages are unreadable or upside down or in the wrong order. The book information such as publishing dates, authors and publishers may even be incorrect or wrongly abbreviated.

Google has therefore been widely criticized for the lack of editing to correct the thousands of mistakes.

There have also been numerous lawsuits against the company for copyright infringement. Google has a very unorthodox policy of freely copying any work until the copyright holder actually instructs them to stop!

The China Written Works Copyright Society has accused Google of scanning 18,000 books by 570 Chinese writers without the writer or the publisher's authorization. The company refused to admit to having "infringed" copyright laws.

Although the project has the potential of becoming the largest body of human knowledge, there seem to be a few things that need ironing out first.


Some awesome lists!

There is a horror film that was secretly filmed at Disney parks

Disney puts a lot of effort into keeping their image up, and is known to be aggressively protective of their intellectual property.

This is especially true when it comes to their parks, as the image of a magical, always fun place is a key part of their draw.

So when a horror film was announced at the Sundance Film Festival that was filmed at the two Disney parks, pretty much everyone expected some kind of legal response from the mass media giant.

That film is "Escape from Tomorrow," and first premiered in 2013. When filming, the crew was aware that Disney wouldn't be too happy about the idea.

To make sure they weren't stopped, the actors kept their scripts on their phones and the crew filmed the whole thing using the video mode of two Canon EOS 5D Mark II and one Canon EOS 1D Mark IV digital single-lens reflex cameras, helping them blend in as typical visitors.

In one more attempt to keep the film a secret from Disney for as long as possible, it was edited in South Korea. Sundance similarly declined to discuss the film in detail before it was shown.

Although it's likely that park security would have stopped them from making the film had they known about it, the company didn't take any legal action against them once it was released. Instead, they decided to ignore it to stop from drawing any more attention to the film, only stating once to CNN that they were aware of it.


New York City plans to turn all its old payphone booths into WiFi hotspots and free cellphone charging facilities!

In this age of wireless technology, what are payphones good for? Think about it. Everybody owns a cellphone these days!

Well, if New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio can have his way, the payphone booths of the Big Apple will all be converted into WiFi hotspots that would blanket the city's five boroughs with free wireless Internet access!

"By using a historic part of New York's street fabric, we can significantly enhance public availability of increasingly-vital broadband access, invite new and innovative digital services, and increase revenue to the city — all at absolutely no cost to taxpayers," said de Blasio in a statement.

The payphones will still offer traditional phone service, as well as free 911 and 311 calls over and above free WiFi.

In addition to that they will also contain free cellphone charging stations and interactive touch screens that will facilitate business transactions.

Dana Spiegel, Executive Director of NYCwireless, said: "If this is any indication of things to come, we're very excited about the city's commitment to open, competitive and innovative solutions to bring the Internet to everyone."

If this venture is successful it could provide a blueprint for other big cities to follow in New York City's footsteps.



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