News & Information

Castro's Cuba, Mental Health Care, Green Holiday, Moana

Top of Mind with Julie Rose
  • Nov 29, 2016
  • 1:44:13

Castro’s Cuba Guest: Jeffrey Shumway, PhD, Professor of History, Coordinator of Latin American Studies, BYU Since the long-time leader’s passing on Friday, Fidel Castro has been hailed as a hero and condemned as a brutal dictator. The wide range of views on Castro from leaders of other countries underscores just how deeply his regime shaped global politics. Mental Health and Jail Populations Guest: Jeff Luck, Associate Professor of Public Health and Human Sciences, Oregon State University More than 1,000 prison inmates have had their sentences shortened by President Obama. Most are serving decades-long sentences for non-violent, low-level drug offenses. Obama says that doesn’t make us safer and it also doesn’t serve taxpayers. Keeping someone in jail in the US costs an average of $60 per day. That cost, combined with overcrowded conditions in prisons, has led to a bi-partisan effort nationwide to change the way sentences are handed out in the criminal justice system.  A new study by public health researchers at Oregon State University, suggests there could also be savings to the prison system if communities invested more in mental health services. Tips for a Green Holiday Guest: Michael Caron, Horticulturist, Professor at the Utah State University Extension at Thanksgiving Point Is the tree up at your house? Wreath on the door? Poinsettias by the hearth? Let’s get some tips on how to keep your holidays green and your indoor plants thriving until Spring, when you can head back out to the flower beds.  Moana Guest: Rod Gustafson, Disney’s new animation “Moana” dominated at the box office over the Thanksgiving holiday. Set in the South Pacific, Moana is the daughter of a chief who sets out on an ocean voyage to save her island and their way of life. But first she has to recruit the help of a vain demi-god named Maui, voiced by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Sign Language Glasses Guest: Dave Brown, Technology Transfer Office, BYU; Michael Jones, Computer Science Professor, BYU When Google launched its Google Glasses in 2013, everyone talked like the future had arrived – the ability to see the world around you and also see something projected on your glasses from your computer would make us so much more efficient and wired-at-all-times. But Google Glasses flopped as a consumer gadget and the company quietly ended the project last year. Consumers may not have been excited to wear goofy spectacles that let them read emails as they walked in the park, but researchers have been all over the Google Glass concept for other purposes. Here at BYU, they’ve worked out a way to help deaf students follow lectures and even planetarium exhibits using digital eyewear.