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Some 1,400 people filled the fieldhouse at St. John Fisher College on Friday to get revved up about Rochester.

"You have a distinct competitive advantage," said keynote speaker Richard Bendis, a Philadelphia-based authority on innovation, referring, among other things, to Rochester's educated and skilled work force.
But Bendis didn't come to Eyes on the Future just to be a cheerleader. His talk focused on some of the serious problems in the U.S. economy, including a worrisome shortage of money to help new businesses get off the ground. The flow of venture capital is at a 12½-year low, and many state governments are too strapped to be of significant help. It goes without saying that New York is among them.


Encouraging words precede sober facts