Santa Clara University

SCU in the News--(Jan. 26 - Feb. 9, 2011)

SCU in the News--(Jan. 26 - Feb. 9, 2011)

Report Overview:
Total Clips (171)
Other (171)


Headline Date Outlet Links

Other (171)
Steve Nash still going strong at 37 02/09/2011 Oakland Tribune Text
Steve Nash still going strong at 37 02/09/2011 Tri-Valley Herald Text
Steve Nash still going strong at 37 02/09/2011 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
Commission Shakeup Leads to Uncertain Growth Outlooks 02/09/2011 Morningstar (Canada) Text View Clip
Predictions help put cap on crime 02/09/2011 Sun News - Online, The Text View Clip
Considering mandate alternatives 02/09/2011 Sonoran News Text View Clip
The Gang of 14 02/09/2011 Stanford Daily Text View Clip
HIS SECOND COUSIN SPOKE TO REPORTERS AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY, WHERE SHE IS A STUDENT. 02/08/2011 CBS 5 Eyewitness News at 5 AM - KPIX-TV Text
HIS SECOND COUSIN SPOKE TO REPORTERS AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY WHERE SHE IS A STUDENT. 02/08/2011 CBS 5 Eyewitness News at 4:30 AM - KPIX-TV Text
Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame 02/08/2011 About.com: Markets Text View Clip
GOOGLE EXECUTIVE RAN WEB PAGE THAT SPARKED EGYPTIAN PROTESTS 02/08/2011 San Jose Mercury News Text
Freed Google executive says he helped spark Egypt revolt 02/08/2011 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
Freed Google executive says he helped spark Egypt revolt 02/08/2011 InsideBayArea.com Text View Clip
Crime prediction is becoming a question of technology, not ESP 02/08/2011 Bulletin, The Text View Clip
Four candidates line up for Riverbank election 02/08/2011 TMCnet.com Text View Clip
Police Working to Target Future Crimes 02/08/2011 Officer.com Text View Clip
Targeting the next crime 02/08/2011 Regina Leader-Post - Online Text View Clip
Targeting the next crime 02/08/2011 StarPhoenix - Online, The Text View Clip
HIS SECOND COUSIN SPOKE TO REPORTERS AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY WHERE SHE IS A STUDENT. 02/07/2011 CBS 5 Eyewitness News At 11 PM - KPIX-TV Text
ONE OF HIS COUSINS IS A STUDENT AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY. 02/07/2011 ABC 7 Weekend News at 5 PM - KGO-TV Text
Reporter: WAEL GHONIM'S SECOND COUSIN ATTENDS SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY. 02/07/2011 Channel 2 News at Noon - KTVU-TV Text
Santa Clara University Student Speaks Out About the Political Crisis in Egypt 02/07/2011 KNTV-TV Text View Clip
Santa Clara University Student Speaks Out About the Political Crisis in Egypt 02/07/2011 KGO-AM Text
Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame Monday February 07, 2011 20:29:00 EST 02/07/2011 Quote.com India Text View Clip
Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame Monday February 07, 2011 20:29:00 EST 02/07/2011 Quote.com Canada Text View Clip
Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame 02/07/2011 Canadian Industrial Equipment News (CIEN) Text View Clip
Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame 02/07/2011 About.com Text View Clip
Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame 02/07/2011 SocialPicks Text View Clip
Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame 02/07/2011 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame 02/07/2011 Herald - Online, The Text View Clip
Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame 02/07/2011 Yahoo! Finance Text View Clip
Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame 02/07/2011 Yahoo! News Text View Clip
Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame 02/07/2011 Centre Daily Times - Online Text View Clip
Merced native the 'Big Bang' winner 02/07/2011 AllVoices Text View Clip
Merced native the 'Big Bang' winner 02/07/2011 Sacramento Bee - Online, The Text View Clip
Merced native the 'Big Bang' winner 02/07/2011 Merced Sun-Star Text
Culture shock? Proud East Coaster now a West Coast college student 02/07/2011 Washington Post - Online Text View Clip
Merced native the 'Big Bang' winner 02/07/2011 Modesto Bee - Online, The Text View Clip
Merced native the 'Big Bang' winner 02/07/2011 Merced Sun-Star - Online Text View Clip
Merced native the 'Big Bang' winner [Merced Sun-Star, Calif.] 02/07/2011 Evergreen Investments Text View Clip
Targeting the next crime 02/07/2011 Province - Online, The Text View Clip
Targeting the next crime 02/07/2011 Windsor Star - Online, The Text View Clip
'Minority Report'? Data helps group target the next crime 02/07/2011 Standard-Examiner - Online Text View Clip
Google manager helped spark Egypt revolt 02/07/2011 ABC Local - Online Text View Clip
District Attorney's Office looking into China trips sponsored by Hacienda-La Puente Unified 02/07/2011 Daily Breeze - Online Text View Clip
Freed Google executive says he helped spark Egypt revolt 02/07/2011 San Bernardino Sun - Online Text View Clip
Considering mandate alternatives 02/07/2011 Congress.org Text View Clip
District Attorney's Office looking into China trips sponsored by Hacienda-La Puente Unified 02/06/2011 San Gabriel Valley Tribune - Online Text View Clip
Tomorrow's Theologians 02/06/2011 America: The National Catholic Weekly Text View Clip
First Commonwealth names managers 02/05/2011 Indiana Gazette - Online, The Text View Clip
What Silicon Valley Geeks Can Learn From Roman Legionnaires: Tech News and Analysis « 02/05/2011 Giga Om Text View Clip
He's a star on Bay Area stages 02/05/2011 Contra Costa Times - Online Text View Clip
Study by Consulting Firm TCGen and Researchers from Santa Clara University Identifies Best Practices in Social Media for Product Development 02/05/2011 Computeruser.com Text View Clip
Santa Clara University Professor Explains U.S.-Egypt Relations 02/04/2011 NBC Bay Area News at 6 PM - KNTV-TV Text View Clip
Study by Consulting Firm TCGen and Researchers from Santa Clara University Identifies Best Practices in Social Media for Product Development 02/04/2011 AllVoices Text View Clip
STATION CUTS LOOM 02/04/2011 San Jose Mercury News Text
Train stops could be cut 02/04/2011 Daily News, The Text View Clip
Political Briefs 02/04/2011 Worcester Telegram & Gazette Text
He's a star on Bay Area stages 02/04/2011 Tri-Valley Herald Text View Clip
How a Roadtrip in India Inspired Efficient Building Monitoring 02/04/2011 Thomson Reuters - UK - Online Text View Clip
A new satellite sails high above the Earth 02/04/2011 Grand Haven Tribune Text View Clip
Lofgren dreams of reform for immigrant students in U.S. 02/04/2011 Stanford Daily Text View Clip
Comment: Is Google?s copying complaint hypocritical? 02/04/2011 Australian Macworld Text View Clip
States hesitant about blocking enactment? - Senators introduce post-lawsuit bills - Repeal fails, 1099 goes to the House - Health Affairs: Churning to come 02/04/2011 Politico - Online, The Text View Clip
Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? 02/03/2011 Macworld - Online Text View Clip
Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? 02/03/2011 Computerworld Hungary Text View Clip
Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? 02/03/2011 PC Advisor Text View Clip
Is Google's Copying Complaint Fair? 02/03/2011 CIO India Text View Clip
Florida, Wisconsin threaten to halt implementation ... Senate repeal vote likely today ... Anti-abortion groups launch 'Expose Planned Parenthood' site ... Steve Larsen takes over CCIIO 02/03/2011 Politico - Online, The Text View Clip
Google and Microsoft search engine spat 02/03/2011 Computerworld UK Text View Clip
Is Google's Copying Complaint Fair or Hypocritical? 02/03/2011 Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights, The Text View Clip
Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? 02/03/2011 Computerworld Philippines Text View Clip
TOWERING PRESENCE 02/03/2011 San Jose Mercury News Text
Aldo Billingslea is a major player in Bay Area theater scene 02/03/2011 Santa Cruz Sentinel - Online Text View Clip
5 Things You Didn't Know About Michael Trucco 02/03/2011 Seattle Post-Intelligencer Text View Clip
Caltrain proposes shuttering half its stations 02/03/2011 Oakland Tribune Text
Redistricting commission picks Angelo Ancheta for vacant slot 02/02/2011 Merced Sun-Star - Online Text View Clip
Black History Month 2011: Bill Douglass 02/02/2011 State Magazine Text View Clip
Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? 02/02/2011 Computerworld Australia Text View Clip
News: Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? 02/02/2011 Australian PC World Text View Clip
Analysis: Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? 02/02/2011 Computerworld New Zealand Text View Clip
Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? 02/02/2011 ARN - Online Text View Clip
Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? 02/02/2011 Computerworld Norge Text View Clip
Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? 02/02/2011 Computerworld Norge Text View Clip
Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? 02/02/2011 Tech World Australia Text View Clip
Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? 02/02/2011 Good Gear Guide Text View Clip
Is Google's Copying Complaint Fair or Hypocritical? 02/02/2011 PC World - Online Text View Clip
Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? 02/02/2011 CIO Australia Text View Clip
Apple Sued Over iPhone Data Privacy 02/01/2011 TechWeb Text View Clip
Apple Sued Over iPhone Data Privacy 02/01/2011 InformationWeek - Online Text View Clip
CQ HEALTHBEAT 02/01/2011 CQ HealthBeat Text
States Mull Implementation Options Following Ruling on Health Care Law 02/01/2011 CQ HealthBeat Text
Aldo Billingslea is a major player in Bay Area theater scene 02/01/2011 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
Aldo Billingslea is a major player in Bay Area theater scene 02/01/2011 Daily Review, The Text View Clip
Churches organize to fight pornography on Super Bowl Sunday 02/01/2011 Examiner.com Text View Clip
Chuches Organize To Fight Porn On Superbowl Sunday 02/01/2011 KTVU-TV - Online Text View Clip
Aldo Billingslea is a major player in Bay Area theater scene 02/01/2011 Contra Costa Times - Online Text View Clip
Pulitzer-prize winning investigative journalist Maurice Possley revists Chicago's crooked ways 02/01/2011 WBEZ-FM - Online Text View Clip
Alternative energy for Nepal - GlobalGiving 02/01/2011 GlobalGiving Text View Clip
Savers and Spenders 02/01/2011 Financial Planning Text
" SOT Radha Basu, Santa Clara University Center for Science, Technology, and Society "Mobile devices solving problems in ways we could never even think of doing before. 01/31/2011 Breakfast Show - KFVS-TV Text
New appointments for PUC, Energy Commish 01/31/2011 Capitol Weekly Text View Clip
Quick sketches of Brown's selections 01/31/2011 Capitol Weekly Text View Clip
Mixed Greens: Echelon and Serious Materials; Tendril and Westinghouse; Fallbrook and TRW 01/31/2011 Greentech Media Text View Clip
Targeting the next crime 01/31/2011 Star Tribune - Online Text View Clip
Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all 01/31/2011 San Bernardino Sun - Online Text View Clip
Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all 01/30/2011 Oroville Mercury-Register Text View Clip
Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all 01/30/2011 American Chronicle Text View Clip
Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all 01/30/2011 Inland Valley Daily Bulletin - Online Text View Clip
Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all 01/30/2011 SiliconValley.com Text View Clip
Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all 01/30/2011 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
PUC appointees give power to the people 01/30/2011 Monterey County Herald Text
IPO AHOY? 01/30/2011 San Jose Mercury News Text
Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all 01/30/2011 Santa Cruz Sentinel - Online Text View Clip
1999 assault case becomes 2011 murder investigation 01/30/2011 Korea Times Text View Clip
Asian Americans scarce on California courts 01/30/2011 Africa Leader Text View Clip
Asian Americans scarce on California courts 01/30/2011 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
Brown names consumer advocate to utilities commission 01/29/2011 Hartford Courant - Online Text View Clip
Redistricting commission picks Angelo Ancheta for vacant slot 01/29/2011 Fresno Bee - Online Text View Clip
Redistricting commission picks Angelo Ancheta for vacant slot 01/29/2011 Sacramento Bee - Online, The Text View Clip
TIRELESS HUMANITARIAN 01/29/2011 San Jose Mercury News Text
At 91, volunteer cranks it up 01/29/2011 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
At 91, San Jose volunteer cranks it up at Sacred Heart 01/29/2011 Cupertino Courier - Online Text View Clip
At 91, San Jose volunteer cranks it up at Sacred Heart 01/29/2011 San Gabriel Valley Tribune - Online Text View Clip
At 91, San Jose volunteer cranks it up at Sacred Heart 01/29/2011 Press-Telegram - Online Text View Clip
A POLITICAL SCIENTIST FROM SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY JOINS US TO TALK ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF WHAT'S GONG ON THERE. 01/28/2011 NBC Bay Area News at 6 PM - KNTV-TV Text
Facebook Sued, Again, For Kicking Off User 01/28/2011 MediaPost.com Text View Clip
The Leadership Challenge Values Cards 01/28/2011 Australian PC World Text View Clip
At 91, San Jose volunteer cranks it up at Sacred Heart 01/28/2011 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
MIKE IS FORMER ATTORNEY WITH THE CONSUMER WATCH DOG GROUP TURN AND CATHERINE IS SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY LAW PROFESSOR WITH EXPERTISE IN THE TELECOMMUNICATION INDUSTRY. 01/27/2011 ABC 7 News at 11 PM - KGO-TV Text
HE IS A SAB SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY LAW PROFESSOR. 01/27/2011 ABC 7 News at 5 PM- KGO-TV Text
Economists Bullish About 2011, Except For All That Debt 01/27/2011 CBS San Francisco - Online Text View Clip
Economists Bullish About 2011, Except For All That Debt 01/27/2011 AllVoices Text View Clip
HOMICIDE VICTIM FELLED BY BEATING -- 12 YEARS LATER 01/27/2011 San Jose Mercury News Text
Nanosat-6 Flight Competition Review winners announced and Nanosat-7 Competition begins 01/27/2011 PhysOrg.com Text View Clip
'The Veil' through March 11 01/27/2011 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
CPUC launches new controversial foundation 01/27/2011 ABC Local - Online Text View Clip
After appointments, PUC presidency still up in the air 01/27/2011 Capitol Weekly Text View Clip
China set to host its own Solar Decathlon 01/27/2011 Renewable Energy Magazine Text View Clip
CPUC launches new controversial foundation 01/27/2011 ABC 7 Morning News at 5 AM - KGO-TV Text View Clip
Jonathan's Space Report No. 637 2011 Jan 26 01/27/2011 SpaceRef.com Text View Clip
Bay Area Jesuit Groups to Hold Mass and Reception in Support of Immigration Reform, Feb. 5 in San Jose 01/26/2011 KIQI-AM Text
Gov. Brown names Campbell woman to PUC 01/26/2011 Business Review - Online Text View Clip
Consumer-friendly picks for PUC 01/26/2011 Daily News, The Text View Clip
Gov. Brown shows pro-consumer tilt in regulatory appointments 01/26/2011 California Chronicle Text View Clip
Brown appoints 2 to PUC 01/26/2011 Los Angeles Times Text
Capitol Alert: Jerry Brown appoints Florio, Sandoval to PUC 01/26/2011 Modesto Bee - Online, The Text View Clip
Brown shakes up boards overseeing California power 01/26/2011 Petaluma360.com Text View Clip
BRIEF: Brown names two to PUC Wednesday January 26, 2011 08:22:52 EST 01/26/2011 Quote.com India Text View Clip
BRIEF: Brown names two to PUC 01/26/2011 TradingMarkets.com Text View Clip
Gov. Jerry Brown shakes up PUC board 01/26/2011 ABC Local - Online Text View Clip
Nanosat-6 Flight Competition Review winners announced and Nanosat-7 Competition begins 01/26/2011 EurekAlert! Text View Clip
Nanosat-6 flight competition review winners announced 01/26/2011 Aerotech News and Review Text View Clip
California Governor Makes Changes At Utilities Commission 01/26/2011 Morningstar.com Text View Clip
California Governor Makes Changes At Utilities Commission 01/26/2011 SmartMoney - Online Text View Clip
Florez overlooked in commission appointments 01/26/2011 iStockAnalyst Text View Clip
Governor Taps Two Attorneys for Public Utilities Commission 01/26/2011 Metropolitan News-Enterprise - Online, The Text View Clip
Key consumer advocate gets state PUC post 01/26/2011 San Francisco Chronicle Text
Brown Names Two to California PUC 01/26/2011 Hispanic Business - Online Text View Clip
Brown names two to California PUC 01/26/2011 Sacramento Bee - Online, The Text View Clip
Brown names two to California PUC 01/26/2011 Sacramento Bee, The Text
Brown appoints two Bay residents to CPUC 01/26/2011 San Mateo Daily Journal Text View Clip
Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's Jan. 7 death was 1999 assault in San Jose 01/26/2011 InsideBayArea.com Text View Clip
Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's Jan. 7 death was 1999 assault in San Jose 01/26/2011 San Jose Mercury News - Online Text View Clip
Brown names consumer advocate Mike Florio to PUC 01/26/2011 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
Brown names consumer advocate Mike Florio to PUC 01/26/2011 San Francisco Chronicle - Online Text View Clip
Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's Jan. 7 death was 1999 assault in San Jose 01/26/2011 Alameda Times-Star Text
Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's Jan. 7 death was 1999 assault in San Jose 01/26/2011 Argus, The Text
Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's Jan. 7 death was 1999 assault in San Jose 01/26/2011 Oakland Tribune Text
Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's Jan. 7 death was 1999 assault in San Jose 01/26/2011 Daily Review, The Text
Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's death was 1999 assault in San Jose 01/26/2011 Contra Costa Times - Online Text View Clip


Steve Nash still going strong at 37
02/09/2011
Oakland Tribune

Steve Nash celebrated his 37th birthday Monday at Oracle Arena in the usual way. Dribbling in traffic. Darting through the lane. Making effortless passes.

When he was done, his 14 points and 15 assists with just one turnover had led the Phoenix Suns to an almost casual victory over the Warriors.

"Just another night, really," Suns coach Alvin Gentry said of Nash.

It also was just another example of how Nash still refuses to act his advancing age. He continues the same magician's work that he has been performing since he hit the national stage in 1993.

In fact, if it seems like another lifetime when a Santa Clara University freshman with short hair was hitting clutch free throws in the Broncos' NCAA tournament upset of Arizona, you're not the only one who feels that way.

"It was," Nash said, "a long time ago."

Closer in his rearview mirror are those back-to-back NBA Most Valuable Player seasons. And, remarkably, his statistics remain at a similar level. He enters tonight's rematch with the Warriors in Phoenix averaging 16.7 points, 3.7 rebounds and 11.1 assists, which is second-best in the league.

"I don't really feel any different," he said. "But this has been a trying year. In a lot of ways, this has been the hardest year of all."

That's because Nash has dealt with personal issues off the court and a rebuilding project on it.

The Suns might be on a 9-4 run that has pushed them back into the playoff mix, but they're still a game under .500. The fall has been steep for a team that made a surprise run to the Western Conference finals last season.

That has led to speculation, with the NBA's Feb. 24 trade deadline approaching, that the Suns and the fiercely competitive Nash might decide it's time to part ways. But Nash repeatedly has said he doesn't want to leave the desert.

"I'm loyal to the Suns franchise and the fans," he said. "I always try to give it my all. That's all I'm concerned with. If they tell me it's time to go, then it's time to go. But until then, I'm just going to keep playing my hardest."

Nash appears to be intent on keeping his professional marriage intact while his personal one has fallen apart. In November, the day after wife Alejandra Amarilla gave birth to a son, Nash announced they were getting a divorce. (The couple also has 6-year-old twin girls.)

That was a hit to the squeaky-clean image of a community-service-oriented man who once was named one of Time magazine's 100 most influential people. And now that an Arizona court recently ruled that the proceedings will not be sealed, their divorce may play out in public.

Meanwhile, Nash is one of the few fixtures of a Suns team that has undergone a radical makeover since last season. Team president Steve Kerr returned to his television gig with TNT. Ownership let Amare Stoudemire leave for New York in free agency.

When offseason tinkering didn't pan out, the Suns swung a blockbuster December deal, shipping former Warrior Jason Richardson, Hedo Turkoglu and Earl Clark to Orlando for Vince Carter, Marcin Gortat and Mickael Pietrus, another former Golden State player.

Through it all, Nash is still Nash.

"Obviously, you take away Amare and that changes everything," Gentry said. "But even without Amare, he's still shooting the same percentage from the field, has the same amount of assists, and he's almost shooting the same from 3-point territory. He's always going to make the right play."

Suns management believes the right play is not to use Nash, who has another year on his contract, as a trade chip. New team president Lon Babby has a pat phrase to describe Nash: He's "the sun, the moon and the stars" of the organization.

Owner Robert Sarver recently told The Arizona Republic, "I don't see us making a trade (involving) him this year. I just don't see it."

Nash said he appreciates how the team "has been faithful" to him. What he likes more is how this new lineup -- led by the veteran trio of Nash, Carter and Grant Hill -- finally is winning.

"When you're below .500, that's not something you're ever going to feel great about," Nash said. "We've got a lot of work to do. But considering all the changes we've made since last year, we're getting there."

Nash the playmaker hasn't changed. Newcomers such as Carter and Pietrus said it's nice to play with the native Canadian instead of against him.

"I always had an appreciation for Steve because it was so hard to prepare for him," Carter said. "Now, I get to watch and think, 'Wow, how are you other guys going to stop that?' "

Added Pietrus: "I feel like I'm watching Brett Favre."

That's a testament to how Nash has eluded time. But that durability takes effort. Nash is legendary for his rigorous training sessions and strict diet. (For his birthday, he splurged by eating a few slices of pizza. "I might have had more than a couple," Nash said.)

While there are signs of the physical toll -- he lies on the floor when not in games because of a chronic back condition -- he continues to go strong.

"There's no reason, with everything I've learned about training and diet and recovery, that I can't keep playing at this level," Nash said. "It all depends on my ability to sacrifice and inspire myself to work every day. When I lose that, it will be time to stop playing."

For now, there's plenty left in a career that someday will end in the Hall of Fame.

Contact Mark Emmons at 408-920-5745.

Copyright © 2011 The Oakland Tribune. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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Steve Nash still going strong at 37
02/09/2011
Tri-Valley Herald

Steve Nash celebrated his 37th birthday Monday at Oracle Arena in the usual way. Dribbling in traffic. Darting through the lane. Making effortless passes.

When he was done, his 14 points and 15 assists with just one turnover had led the Phoenix Suns to an almost casual victory over the Warriors.

"Just another night, really," Suns coach Alvin Gentry said of Nash.

It also was just another example of how Nash still refuses to act his advancing age. He continues the same magician's work that he has been performing since he hit the national stage in 1993.

In fact, if it seems like another lifetime when a Santa Clara University freshman with short hair was hitting clutch free throws in the Broncos' NCAA tournament upset of Arizona, you're not the only one who feels that way.

"It was," Nash said, "a long time ago."

Closer in his rearview mirror are those back-to-back NBA Most Valuable Player seasons. And, remarkably, his statistics remain at a similar level. He enters tonight's rematch with the Warriors in Phoenix averaging 16.7 points, 3.7 rebounds and 11.1 assists, which is second-best in the league.

"I don't really feel any different," he said. "But this has been a trying year. In a lot of ways, this has been the hardest year of all."

That's because Nash has dealt with personal issues off the court and a rebuilding project on it.

The Suns might be on a 9-4 run that has pushed them back into the playoff mix, but they're still a game under .500. The fall has been steep for a team that made a surprise run to the Western Conference finals last season.

That has led to speculation, with the NBA's Feb. 24 trade deadline approaching, that the Suns and the fiercely competitive Nash might decide it's time to part ways. But Nash repeatedly has said he doesn't want to leave the desert.

"I'm loyal to the Suns franchise and the fans," he said. "I always try to give it my all. That's all I'm concerned with. If they tell me it's time to go, then it's time to go. But until then, I'm just going to keep playing my hardest."

Nash appears to be intent on keeping his professional marriage intact while his personal one has fallen apart. In November, the day after wife Alejandra Amarilla gave birth to a son, Nash announced they were getting a divorce. (The couple also has 6-year-old twin girls.)

That was a hit to the squeaky-clean image of a community-service-oriented man who once was named one of Time magazine's 100 most influential people. And now that an Arizona court recently ruled that the proceedings will not be sealed, their divorce may play out in public.

Meanwhile, Nash is one of the few fixtures of a Suns team that has undergone a radical makeover since last season. Team president Steve Kerr returned to his television gig with TNT. Ownership let Amare Stoudemire leave for New York in free agency.

When offseason tinkering didn't pan out, the Suns swung a blockbuster December deal, shipping former Warrior Jason Richardson, Hedo Turkoglu and Earl Clark to Orlando for Vince Carter, Marcin Gortat and Mickael Pietrus, another former Golden State player.

Through it all, Nash is still Nash.

"Obviously, you take away Amare and that changes everything," Gentry said. "But even without Amare, he's still shooting the same percentage from the field, has the same amount of assists, and he's almost shooting the same from 3-point territory. He's always going to make the right play."

Suns management believes the right play is not to use Nash, who has another year on his contract, as a trade chip. New team president Lon Babby has a pat phrase to describe Nash: He's "the sun, the moon and the stars" of the organization.

Owner Robert Sarver recently told The Arizona Republic, "I don't see us making a trade (involving) him this year. I just don't see it."

Nash said he appreciates how the team "has been faithful" to him. What he likes more is how this new lineup -- led by the veteran trio of Nash, Carter and Grant Hill -- finally is winning.

"When you're below .500, that's not something you're ever going to feel great about," Nash said. "We've got a lot of work to do. But considering all the changes we've made since last year, we're getting there."

Nash the playmaker hasn't changed. Newcomers such as Carter and Pietrus said it's nice to play with the native Canadian instead of against him.

"I always had an appreciation for Steve because it was so hard to prepare for him," Carter said. "Now, I get to watch and think, 'Wow, how are you other guys going to stop that?' "

Added Pietrus: "I feel like I'm watching Brett Favre."

That's a testament to how Nash has eluded time. But that durability takes effort. Nash is legendary for his rigorous training sessions and strict diet. (For his birthday, he splurged by eating a few slices of pizza. "I might have had more than a couple," Nash said.)

While there are signs of the physical toll -- he lies on the floor when not in games because of a chronic back condition -- he continues to go strong.

"There's no reason, with everything I've learned about training and diet and recovery, that I can't keep playing at this level," Nash said. "It all depends on my ability to sacrifice and inspire myself to work every day. When I lose that, it will be time to stop playing."

For now, there's plenty left in a career that someday will end in the Hall of Fame.

Contact Mark Emmons at 408-920-5745.

Copyright © 2011 Tri-Valley Herald. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

Return to Top



Steve Nash still going strong at 37 | View Clip
02/09/2011
San Jose Mercury News - Online

Steve Nash celebrated his 37th birthday Monday at Oracle Arena in the usual way. Dribbling in traffic. Darting through the lane. Making effortless passes.

When he was done, his 14 points and 15 assists with just one turnover had led the Phoenix Suns to an almost casual victory over the Warriors.

"Just another night, really," Suns coach Alvin Gentry said of Nash.

It also was just another example of how Nash still refuses to act his advancing age. He continues the same magician's work that he has been performing since he hit the national stage in 1993.

In fact, if it seems like another lifetime when a Santa Clara University freshman with short hair was hitting clutch free throws in the Broncos' NCAA tournament upset of Arizona, you're not the only one who feels that way.

"It was," Nash said, "a long time ago."

Closer in his rearview mirror are those back-to-back NBA Most Valuable Player seasons. And, remarkably, his statistics remain at a similar level. He enters tonight's rematch with the Warriors in Phoenix averaging 16.7 points, 3.7 rebounds and 11.1 assists, which is second-best in the league.

"I don't really feel any different," he said. "But this has been a trying year. In a lot of ways, this has been the hardest year of all."

That's because Nash has dealt with personal issues off the court and a rebuilding project on it. That has led to speculation, with the NBA's Feb. 24 trade deadline approaching, that the Suns and the fiercely competitive Nash might decide it's time to part ways. But Nash repeatedly has said he doesn't want to leave the desert.

"I'm loyal to the Suns franchise and the fans," he said. "I always try to give it my all. That's all I'm concerned with. If they tell me it's time to go, then it's time to go. But until then, I'm just going to keep playing my hardest."

Nash appears to be intent on keeping his professional marriage intact while his personal one has fallen apart. In November, the day after wife Alejandra Amarilla gave birth to a son, Nash announced they were getting a divorce. (The couple also has 6-year-old twin girls.)

That was a hit to the squeaky-clean image of a community-service-oriented man who once was named one of Time magazine's 100 most influential people. And now that an Arizona court recently ruled that the proceedings will not be sealed, their divorce may play out in public.

Meanwhile, Nash is one of the few fixtures of a Suns team that has undergone a radical makeover since last season. Team president Steve Kerr returned to his television gig with TNT. Ownership let Amare Stoudemire leave for New York in free agency.

When offseason tinkering didn't pan out, the Suns swung a blockbuster December deal, shipping former Warrior Jason Richardson, Hedo Turkoglu and Earl Clark to Orlando for Vince Carter, Marcin Gortat and Mickael Pietrus, another former Golden State player.

Through it all, Nash is still Nash.

"Obviously, you take away Amare and that changes everything," Gentry said. "But even without Amare, he's still shooting the same percentage from the field, has the same amount of assists, and he's almost shooting the same from 3-point territory. He's always going to make the right play."

Suns management believes the right play is not to use Nash, who has another year on his contract, as a trade chip. New team president Lon Babby has a pat phrase to describe Nash: He's "the sun, the moon and the stars" of the organization.

Owner Robert Sarver recently told The Arizona Republic, "I don't see us making a trade (involving) him this year. I just don't see it."

Nash said he appreciates how the team "has been faithful" to him. What he likes more is how this new lineup -- led by the veteran trio of Nash, Carter and Grant Hill -- finally is winning.

"When you're below .500, that's not something you're ever going to feel great about," Nash said. "We've got a lot of work to do. But considering all the changes we've made since last year, we're getting there."

Nash the playmaker hasn't changed. Newcomers such as Carter and Pietrus said it's nice to play with the native Canadian instead of against him.

"I always had an appreciation for Steve because it was so hard to prepare for him," Carter said. "Now, I get to watch and think, 'Wow, how are you other guys going to stop that?' "

Added Pietrus: "I feel like I'm watching Brett Favre."

That's a testament to how Nash has eluded time. But that durability takes effort. Nash is legendary for his rigorous training sessions and strict diet. (For his birthday, he splurged by eating a few slices of pizza. "I might have had more than a couple," Nash said.)

While there are signs of the physical toll -- he lies on the floor when not in games because of a chronic back condition -- he continues to go strong.

"There's no reason, with everything I've learned about training and diet and recovery, that I can't keep playing at this level," Nash said. "It all depends on my ability to sacrifice and inspire myself to work every day. When I lose that, it will be time to stop playing."

For now, there's plenty left in a career that someday will end in the Hall of Fame.

Contact Mark Emmons at 408-920-5745.

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Commission Shakeup Leads to Uncertain Growth Outlooks | View Clip
02/09/2011
Morningstar (Canada)

The recent reconfiguration of the California Public Utilities Commission raises regulatory uncertainty for the state's three publicly-traded utilities, PG&E PCG , Edison International EIX and Sempra Energy SRE . We are maintaining our outlooks and fair value estimates for now, but will monitor the new commission's actions closely. In late January, newly elected Gov. Jerry Brown appointed two Democrats, Mike Florio and Catherine Sandoval, to replace two commissioners whose terms had expired at the end of 2010. In addition, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's 2010 appointee Nancy Ryan failed to gain state Senate confirmation. Brown has not yet appointed a replacement for Ryan, leaving three Democrats, one Republican and one opening on the five-person commission.

Both appointees are wild cards for the utilities. Florio, most recently an attorney for the consumer advocate group The Utility Reform Network (TURN), is highly experienced in energy policy but has fought against the utilities most recently. Sandoval, a law professor at Santa Clara University, has little experience with energy policy. Both must gain Senate approval within one year of their appointment but have full voting rights as they await confirmation.

Most critically, we await the commission's decision on PG&E's 2011-13 general rate case (GRC) and litigation of 2012-14 GRC for Southern California Edison and San Diego Gas & Electric. PG&E has reached a settlement that would raise rates $760 million by 2013, but the commission's schedule likely won't allow final approval until late March or mid-April. Furthermore, a 2-2 split would not constitute a final ruling. The split could break if Florio recuses himself based on his pre-appointment involvement in the GRC or if Brown appoints a fifth commissioner. The delay means PG&E likely will not be able to record the earnings increase from new rates during the first quarter. However, the rate increase will be retroactive to January 1, likely resulting in catch-up earnings during the second quarter.

The California utilities should benefit from a ruling in late 2010 that allows them to file by mid-2011, for energy efficiency incentives earned in 2009. This represents a one-year extension of the 2006-08 program, but offers no certainty for future years. PG&E earned $104 million (roughly $0.18 per share after tax) and Edison International earned about $75 million ($0.15 per share after tax) from the 2006-08 program. For both companies, we assume regulators extend the energy efficiency program with the same general framework. If the program is canceled or awards cut, we estimate it would reduce our fair value estimates for PG&E and Edison by as much as $1 per share (3%) and cut our earnings estimates in 2011 and beyond by as much as $0.07 per share.

Travis Miller is the associated director for the utility sector. Before joining Morningstar in January 2007, he was a student at the University of Chicago?s Graduate School of Business where he pursued concentrations in accounting and finance. He previously worked as a reporter at several Chicago-area newspapers, including the Daily Herald in Arlington Heights, Ill. He earned a bachelor?s degree from Northwestern University?s Medill School of Journalism.

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Predictions help put cap on crime | View Clip
02/09/2011
Sun News - Online, The

Ryan Hughes, a young, spiky-haired computer analyst for the Minneapolis Police Department, pulls up a map of the Twin Cities on his screen.

"Here, here, here," he begins, pointing to six red dots. Each marks a robbery probably committed by the same man.

"And here," Hughes continues, pointing to a dot just northeast of Minneapolis, "is where I predicted he would go next."

Simple as a crime map, seemingly as far-fetched as ESP, such scenes are becoming more common. Police departments from Minneapolis to Los Angeles are turning to the emerging science of using recent crime data to predict where criminals will strike next.

The potentially revolutionary step could fundamentally alter the nature of police work.

The idea is that everyone, even criminals, is a creature of habit. With enough information about past crimes, it's possible to forecast a future target.

"We usually look at the last week and say, 'This is what happened in the last week,'" said Minneapolis Chief Tim Dolan. "Well, we've added to that, saying, 'This is what we think's going to happen next week.'"

That kind of thinking has just begun in Minneapolis, but Dolan says it's already paid off in north and southwest Minneapolis, areas that led the city last year in reducing overall crime rates.

The strategy looks slightly different everywhere it's used, but predictive policing relies mainly on a police department's ability to accumulate deep databases of crime information that detail time, location, methods and numerous other bits of revealing data. Crunched by a computer analyst, the numbers reveal patterns.

That's the task facing a crew of five such crime analysts who work out of a second floor office in City Hall. Every day, they pore over recent crime data, slicing it different ways and sometimes using software to crunch it further. If a pattern emerges, they mark it down for consideration on an internal crime map that gets passed along to the chief for his weekly meeting with top inspectors and lieutenants.

A handful of police departments across the country have spent tens of thousands of dollars on more advanced software, or are working with university researchers and technology companies on algorithms to help them spot crime trends. It's akin to predicting where an earthquake's aftershocks will be felt, says a Santa Clara University mathematician developing formulas for such police work.

As for Hughes' prediction of where the Minneapolis robber would strike next? It was made using free software distributed by the National Institute of Justice. The software examines the location and timing of each crime to draw its conclusions. The estimate of the robber's next target turned out to be a mile off. But in the world of crime prediction, that's still counted as a success - the kind of information that could put a patrol car close to the action.

Hughes, who hopes the Minneapolis department will eventually use more high-powered software for predictive policing, said his maps have accurately predicted the locations of 45 percent of the city's violent crime.

"I have a better batting average than Joe Mauer," Hughes said.

To better understand predictive policing, consider the Pop-Tarts story.

Businesses such as Wal-Mart have long anticipated customers' needs based on weather and time of year. Coastal stores knew that as hurricanes approached, customers stocked up on bottled water and duct tape. Those things made sense, but looking more closely at customer data and comparing it to weather patterns, analysts at Wal-Mart noticed that customers anticipating a hurricane also bought more strawberry Pop-Tarts.

It's the sort of anecdote that the emerging industry of predictive policing embraces because it shows how analyzing data can turn up surprises, things that can be used to predict future behavior.

The promise of doing the same thing with crime has prompted some large police departments such as Los Angeles to invest in partnerships with university researchers to devise predictive algorithms or formulas. As exotic as it sounds, it's just the next step in the changing world of police work, said William Bratton, the celebrated former chief of police in Los Angeles and New York City.

"It's really the continuation of the evolution of policing," Bratton said.

Starting in the 1990s, when police began using crime reports to identify hot spots, the focus has been on putting police officers near high-crime areas. Putting laptops in squad cars and publishing crime maps helped shorten response time. Now, police departments can quickly analyze a lot of crime data to spot crime trends as they're occurring.

"So after two or three incidents we can put a stop to it instead of waiting for 20 or 30," said Bratton, who now works as an independent security consultant.

"This is potentially labor-saving," he said. "That's very important because as we're going into very tough times with public financing, it's going to become more and more critical."

The hope is that predictive policing will help supplant random patrolling, which studies have shown doesn't work well.

"It's not enough to send people out and expect that they will have an impact on crime," said Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum in Washington.

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Considering mandate alternatives | View Clip
02/09/2011
Sonoran News

Liberal Rep. Peter A. DeFazio is proposing that Americans be allowed to forgo buying health insurance if they agree to pay for their care. Senate Democrats are working on other incentives to avoid requiring people to get insurance.

From the start, Republicans have uniformly opposed the health care overhaul and pressed to repeal it. Now, Democrats are increasingly exploring legislative options should the Supreme Court strike down the law's requirement that individuals get health insurance, or throw out the law altogether — contingency planning that seemed unthinkable just a few months ago.

Talk of alternatives to the requirement picked up last week after a federal court in Florida ruled the law (PL 111-148, PL 111-152) unconstitutional. DeFazio, who voted for the overhaul, sent a letter to colleagues saying Congress could quickly resolve any question about the law's constitutionality by allowing individuals to opt out of the requirement to carry insurance as long as they take full responsibility for their health expenses.

The proposal could prove attractive to those who support access to health care and recognize some Americans prefer not to carry insurance. “Buying insurance should be a choice, not a matter of federal coercion,” wrote the Oregon Democrat. “But with that choice comes responsibility.”

Under DeFazio's draft proposal, those who do not want health insurance would be required to file an “affidavit of personal responsibility” and waive their right to enroll in a health insurance exchange or Medicaid. They also would be barred from using the bankruptcy law to reduce health-related debt.

Democratic Sens. Ben Nelson and Claire McCaskill also are exploring alternatives to provide financial incentives to those who sign up for health insurance during an open-enrollment period. Their ideas are fashioned after one Congress used when it provided a prescription drug benefit for Medicare recipients. It's an effort to pass constitutional muster and ease the worries of moderate Democrats who dislike the individual mandate.

Nelson's interest predates the court decision since he has been looking for an alternative to the individual mandate for nearly a year. That he faces reelection in 2012 in Nebraska, one of the 26 states that were party to the lawsuit in Florida, has only added urgency to his effort. Nelson has asked the Government Accountability Office (GAO) and the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to analyze and provide an estimate of the cost of his proposal. Nelson spokesman Jake Thompson said the senator would prefer to offer people incentives to get insurance rather than have a requirement.

It's unclear when the GAO and CBO reports will be completed, but Nelson is hopeful they will be done in time for him to introduce legislation to replace the individual mandate.

“If it's a viable alternative that would bring a large number of people into the system, he would introduce that to replace the individual mandate,” Thompson said.

McCaskill, who faces re-election next year in Missouri, said the difficulty is finding an alternative that ensures the insurance pool has a mix of both sick and healthy individuals — a combination needed to spread risk. “How do you say to a private insurance company, ‘You must insure somebody that you know is going to cost you a lot more money than somebody who hasn't been sick before,' if you do not have more people in the pool?” she asked.

McCaskill wants any alternative to maintain a private, free-market system that still covers the chronically ill. The question, she said, is whether the incentives will prompt enough people to buy insurance to avoid penalties if they don't.

Republicans applauded the Florida judge's ruling to promote their call to allow states to decide whether to participate in the health care program. Sens. John Barrasso of Wyoming and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina unveiled a measure (S 244) to allow states to opt out of any or all of the provisions. “My view of the law is that if you allowed the states to opt out, half would,” Graham said on Fox News. “That would make us start over with a new bill.”

Other proposals coming from Congress are far less sweeping, including a proposal to permit states to seek waivers from the law to establish parallel health care systems far sooner than 2017, as the law permits. Democratic Sens. Ron Wyden of Oregon and Mary L. Landrieu of Louisiana and Republican Sen. Scott P. Brown of Massachusetts introduced a bill Feb. 1 (S 248) that would allow states to seek waivers as soon as 2014. Vermont's three lawmakers — Democratic Sen. Patrick J. Leahy, independent Sen. Bernard Sanders and Democratic Rep. Peter Welch — are proposing that the state be permitted to institute a single-payer system.

The White House has largely ignored growing calls for substantive changes and is banking on the high court finding the law constitutional. “As a political strategy they have to maintain a complete air of confidence,” says Brad Joondeph, a law professor at Santa Clara University.

Jane Norman is associate editor of CQ HealthBeat.

Copyright www.Congress.org, Feb. 7, 2011.

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The Gang of 14 | View Clip
02/09/2011
Stanford Daily

The clock reads 3:30 a.m. on a Monday. Most people across campus are fast asleep; others are finishing papers and problem sets. For Aly Gleason '13 and Kirk Morrow '11, the day has already begun. They need to make it to San Jose by 5 a.m. for their early morning physical training for Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC).

Stanford's fourteen undergraduates (above) involved in ROTC must balance on-campus academics with their off-campus ROTC commitments. Stanford students and faculty are currently debating ROTC's return to campus. The University officially phased out the ROTC program in 1973. (Courtesy of Akhil Iyer)

As elite universities across the nation weigh the pros and cons of reinstating ROTC on their campuses, Stanford students and faculty have begun lining up on both sides of the argument. Yet for as much debate and discussion that these four letters have stirred all over campus this year, very few within the Stanford community know much about the fourteen students currently participating in the program.

Fourteen out of 6,887 students–the ROTC community on campus is approximately the same size as an IHUM section. Hailing from all over the United States, spanning all four classes, bringing different backgrounds, they represent the diversity, talent and passion of Stanford students. But as the national spotlight has shifted to their program, most of the individual cadets don't notice much of a difference between those in ROTC and their peers.

“We're just like anyone else who got into Stanford,” said Lillian McBee '14. “We got in through the same selection process. We're not that different from everyone else.”

Their schedule, however, is far from typical.

Depending on the week, with service and their ROTC-given jobs, cadets commute anywhere from two to six times per week to their respective service's location. Stanford's ROTC program was officially phased out from campus in 1973 and the University declined to award academic units for students who remotely participated in the program. As a result, Stanford's current Naval and Marine cadets go to UC-Berkeley, the Air Force cadets go to San Jose State University and the Army candidates go to Santa Clara University.

The commutes to these schools, which range from half an hour to an hour on a good day, impact the course selection and extracurricular activities of the cadets.

“The commute is part of the time commitment,” said Morrow. “There's definitely been a few times where there's been a class that I wanted to take but I couldn't because I would need to be leaving to go to ROTC at the tail end…It was more of the commute that kept me from taking a class than it was ROTC events.”

“The fact that it's not on campus has inhibited my ability to have academic freedom in terms of choosing classes,” added Jimmy Ruck '11.

The cadets are required to take ROTC classes, which differ from their Stanford course-load.

“The classes are not exactly the same as Stanford classes because they've been fine tuned to give us the officer development that we need,” added Morrow. “So they would be a great supplement to Stanford classes.”

“For both ROTC classes I've had to work way more than I've ever had to work for IHUM,” McBee said. “And sophomores and upperclassmen have even harder classes..the whole thing about classes not being hard enough is definitely unfounded.”

The difficulty of ROTC classes has prompted some to question why Stanford does not award academic credit for the courses.

“The main issue for me is that Stanford doesn't even recognize this as credit. If you took yoga, you get one unit of non-academic credit,” said Ruck. “At the very least, Stanford can grant that to ROTC. There's no doubt in my mind that it's comparable, if not a lot more strenuous and time-intensive and physically demanding, than some of these non-academic units.”

Most ROTC students spend at least part of four days per week with their battalion performing a wide range of activities including physical training, leadership activities, classes and meetings.

Every Wednesday morning, ROTC cadets from all four branches meet together on campus for physical training. All Stanford military-affiliated persons are invited, and it is the only time the cadets are together as Stanford students, not at their separate schools.

The days can be long, especially on Thursdays when the cadets often leave around noon and do not return to campus until after 10 p.m. Gleason, who is also a Division I athlete, noted that the balance can be difficult at times.

“Our coaches are pretty understanding that ROTC is where I want to go with my life…I'm in 15 units right now and I couldn't take another class if I tried. I would actually fail it.”

However, it is clear to these students that Stanford academics come first.

“Our main priority is school and our second priority is ROTC, and everything else comes after that,” McBee said. “While ROTC is a big part of what we do, our academics come first, which is explicitly stated in the program.”

Ruck believes the return of ROTC is important for the education of students and future officers alike.

“People will become more exposed to the personal side of the military and learn more about what this aspect of our nation does on a daily basis,” Ruck said.

“Whether we like it or not, the military is going to be a fundamental part of foreign policy that shapes our events and world events for decades to come, so its something that I feel like any citizen of any country should have at least a baseline knowledge of the American military.”

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HIS SECOND COUSIN SPOKE TO REPORTERS AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY, WHERE SHE IS A STUDENT.
02/08/2011
CBS 5 Eyewitness News at 5 AM - KPIX-TV

THAT GOOGLE EXECUTIVE RELEASED BY EGYPTIAN AUTHORITIES SAYS HE WAS BEHIND THE FACEBOOK PAGE THAT HELPED SPARK THE PROTESTS. WAEL GHONIM SOBBED YESTERDAY IN CAIRO AS HE DESCRIBED BEING BLINDFOLDED FOR MUCH OF THE TWO WEEKS HE WAS HELD. HE SAID HE WAS SNATCHED OFF THE STREETS ON THE THIRD DAY OF THE PROTESTS BUT HIS LOVED ONES DIDN'T KNOW WHERE HE WAS UNTIL SUNDAY. [ THROUGH INTERPRETER ] PLEASE DON'T TRY TO MAKE A HERO OUT OF ME FOR I AM NOT ONE. I'M JUST A GUY WHO HAS BEEN SLEEPING FOR 12 DAYS. THE REAL HEROES ARE THE ONES WHO WENT DOWN IN THE STREETS. THE FIRST THING HE DID AFTER HE WAS RELEASED WAS GO TO TAHRIR STREET AGAIN. HE IS NOT HE IS NOT IN IT FOR THE FAME. HE'S IN IT TO GET HIS MESSAGE ACROSS. HIS SECOND COUSIN SPOKE TO REPORTERS AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY, WHERE SHE IS A STUDENT. THE GOOGLE EXEC IS AN EGYPTIAN NATIONAL AND WORKS IN DUBAI.

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HIS SECOND COUSIN SPOKE TO REPORTERS AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY WHERE SHE IS A STUDENT.
02/08/2011
CBS 5 Eyewitness News at 4:30 AM - KPIX-TV

AND THE GOOGLE EXECUTIVE RELEASED BY EGYPTIAN AUTHORITIES SAYS HE WAS BEHIND THE FACEBOOK PAGE THAT HELPED SPARK THE PROTESTS. WAEL GHONIM SOBBED YESTERDAY IN CAIRO AS HE DESCRIBED BEING BLINDFOLDED FOR MUCH OF THE TWO WEEKS HE WAS HELD. HE SAID HE WAS SNATCHED OFF THE STREETS ON THE THIRD DAY OF PROTESTS. BUT HIS LOVED ONES DIDN'T KNOW WHERE HE WAS UNTIL SUNDAY. [ FOREIGN LANGUAGE ] PLEASE DON'T TRY TO MAKE A HERO OUT OF ME FOR I AM NOT ONE. I'M JUST A GUY WHO HAS BEEN SLEEPING FOR 12 DAYS. THE REAL HEROES ARE THE ONES WHO WENT DOWN IN THE STREETS. THE FIRST THING HE DID AFTER HE WAS RELEASED WAS GO TO TAHIR SQUARE AGAIN. NOTES IN IT FOR THE HE IS NOT IN IT FOR TH FAME. HIS SECOND COUSIN SPOKE TO REPORTERS AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY WHERE SHE IS A STUDENT. THE GOOGLE EXECUTIVE IS AN EGYPTIAN NATIONAL AND WORKS IN DUBAI.

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Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame | View Clip
02/08/2011
About.com: Markets

The Silicon Valley Engineering Council (SVEC) will induct Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup into the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame on Feb. 24.

The Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of engineers, technical leaders, and scientists in the Silicon Valley region who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and have made significant contributions to the Silicon Valley community and the Greater Bay Area communities.

Shoup has written more than 100 technical papers on mechanical design and applied mechanisms, and is the co-author of the book Design of Machine Elements. He has received numerous honors, including the Distinguished Service Award of the International Federation for the Theory of Machines and Mechanisms in 2007, the Rodney D. Chipp Memorial Award of the Society of Women Engineers in 2002, and the Distinguished Service Award from the ASME Council on Education in 1988.

Shoup has been at SCU since 1989, where he currently teaches mechanical engineering and is also the interim executive director for international programs. He served as the School of Engineering dean for 13 years, overseeing six academic departments, 40 full-time faculty, 600 undergraduate students, and 800 graduate students. During his time as dean, Shoup established a merit scholarship program that helped to raise the average SAT score for the engineering freshman class by 125 points. He also inaugurated a group of five programs to serve underrepresented high school students and to encourage them to undertake college study/engineering careers. In the past 10 years, more than 1,200 students have benefited from these programs. Shoup also created the nation's first “degree warranty” program whereby SCU engineering graduates can return to campus and take graduate courses tuition-free if they are ever laid off from their jobs.

Shoup started his academic career at Ohio State University, where he received his bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering. In 1969, he became an assistant professor at Rutgers University, later teaching at the University of Houston. He became assistant dean of Texas A&M University in 1980 and the dean at Florida Atlantic University in 1983.

The SVEC Annual Engineers Week Dinner and Hall of Fame Awards will take place Thursday, Feb. 24 from 5–9:30 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel in San Jose.

About Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University is a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California's Silicon Valley. Santa Clara offers its more than 8,800 students rigorous undergraduate programs in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master's degrees in a number of professional fields, law degrees, and engineering and theology doctorates. Distinguished by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master's universities, Santa Clara educates leaders of competence, conscience, and compassion grounded in faith-inspired values. Founded in 1851, Santa Clara is California's oldest operating institution of higher education. For more information, see www.scu.edu.

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GOOGLE EXECUTIVE RAN WEB PAGE THAT SPARKED EGYPTIAN PROTESTS
02/08/2011
San Jose Mercury News

The young Google executive detained by Egyptian authorities for 12 days said Monday that he was behind the Facebook page that helped spark what he called "the revolution of the youth of the Internet."

Meanwhile, a U.S.-based human rights group said nearly 300 people have died in two weeks of clashes.

Wael Ghonim, a marketing manager for Google, wept throughout an emotional TV interview just hours after he was freed. He described how he spent his entire time in detention blindfolded while his worried parents didn't know where he was. He insisted he had not been tortured and said his interrogators treated him with respect.

"This is the revolution of the youth of the Internet and now the revolution of all Egyptians," he said, adding that he was taken aback when the security forces holding him branded him a traitor.

"Anyone with good intentions is the traitor because being evil is the norm," he said.

"If I was a traitor, I would have stayed in my villa in the Emirates and made good money and said like others, 'Let this country go to hell.' But we are not traitors," added Ghonim, an Egyptian who oversees Google's marketing in the Middle East and Africa from Dubai, one of the United Arab Emirates.

Ghonim has become a hero of the demonstrators since he went missing Jan. 27, two days after the protests began.

On Monday, he confirmed reports by protesters that he was the administrator of the Facebook page "We are all Khaled Said" that was one of the main tools for organizing the demonstration that started the movement Jan. 25.

Khaled Said was a 28-year-old businessman who died in June at the hands of undercover authorities, setting off months of protests against the hated police.

Ghonim's whereabouts were not known until Sunday, when a prominent Egyptian businessman confirmed he was under arrest and would soon be released.

"No one literally knew anything about him," since he disappeared, said his second cousin, Hoda Magid, who is studying biology at Santa Clara University. "It wasn't until his release that we knew. We are excited."

Magid, who moved to Fremont with her family a decade ago, saw Ghonim last summer when she and her family returned to their home country.

"I don't think he's the face of the movement," she said of her cousin. "His message is the face of the movement."

Time and again during the two weeks of demonstrations, protesters have pointed proudly to the fact that they have no single leader, as if to say that it is everyone's uprising. Still, there seems at times to be a longing among the crowds at Cairo's Tahrir Square, the main demonstration site, for someone to rally around.

The unmasking of Ghonim as the previously unknown administrator of the Facebook page that started the protests could give the crowds someone to look to for inspiration to press on.

Whether Ghonim forcefully takes up that mantle remains to be seen, but he said repeatedly in Monday night's interview that he did not feel he was a hero.

"I didn't want anyone to know that I am the administrator," he said. "There are no heroes; we are all heroes on the street. And no one is on their horse and fighting with the sword."

Copyright © 2011 San Jose Mercury News

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Freed Google executive says he helped spark Egypt revolt | View Clip
02/08/2011
San Jose Mercury News - Online

Wael Ghonim, Google Inc. marketing manager.

CAIRO -- The young Google executive detained by Egyptian authorities for 12 days said Monday that he was behind the Facebook page that helped spark what he called "the revolution of the youth of the Internet."

Meanwhile, a U.S.-based human rights group said nearly 300 people have died in two weeks of clashes.

Wael Ghonim, a marketing manager for Google, wept throughout an emotional TV interview just hours after he was freed. He described how he spent his entire time in detention blindfolded while his worried parents didn't know where he was. He insisted he had not been tortured and said his interrogators treated him with respect.

"This is the revolution of the youth of the Internet and now the revolution of all Egyptians," he said, adding that he was taken aback when the security forces holding him branded him a traitor.

"Anyone with good intentions is the traitor because being evil is the norm," he said.

"If I was a traitor, I would have stayed in my villa in the Emirates and made good money and said like others, 'Let this country go to hell.' But we are not traitors," added Ghonim, an Egyptian who oversees Google's marketing in the Middle East and Africa from Dubai, one of the United Arab Emirates.

Ghonim has become a hero of the demonstrators since he went missing Jan. 27, two days after the protests began.

On Monday, he confirmed reports by protesters that he was the administrator of the Facebook page "We are

all Khaled Said" that was one of the main tools for organizing the demonstration that started the movement Jan. 25.

Khaled Said was a 28-year-old businessman who died in June at the hands of undercover authorities, setting off months of protests against the hated police.

Ghonim's whereabouts were not known until Sunday, when a prominent Egyptian businessman confirmed he was under arrest and would soon be released.

"No one literally knew anything about him," since he disappeared, said his second cousin, Hoda Magid, who is studying biology at Santa Clara University. "It wasn't until his release that we knew. We are excited."

Magid, who moved to Fremont with her family a decade ago, saw Ghonim last summer when she and her family returned to their home country.

"I don't think he's the face of the movement," she said of her cousin. "His message is the face of the movement."

Time and again during the two weeks of demonstrations, protesters have pointed proudly to the fact that they have no single leader, as if to say that it is everyone's uprising. Still, there seems at times to be a longing among the crowds at Cairo's Tahrir Square, the main demonstration site, for someone to rally around.

The unmasking of Ghonim as the previously unknown administrator of the Facebook page that started the protests could give the crowds someone to look to for inspiration to press on.

Whether Ghonim forcefully takes up that mantle remains to be seen, but he said repeatedly in Monday night's interview that he did not feel he was a hero.

"I didn't want anyone to know that I am the administrator," he said. "There are no heroes; we are all heroes on the street. And no one is on their horse and fighting with the sword."

Mercury News staff writer Julia Prodis Sulek contributed to this report.

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Freed Google executive says he helped spark Egypt revolt | View Clip
02/08/2011
InsideBayArea.com

CAIRO -- The young Google executive detained by Egyptian authorities for 12 days said Monday that he was behind the Facebook page that helped spark what he called "the revolution of the youth of the Internet."

Meanwhile, a U.S.-based human rights group said nearly 300 people have died in two weeks of clashes.

Wael Ghonim, a marketing manager for Google, wept throughout an emotional TV interview just hours after he was freed. He described how he spent his entire time in detention blindfolded while his worried parents didn't know where he was. He insisted he had not been tortured and said his interrogators treated him with respect.

"This is the revolution of the youth of the Internet and now the revolution of all Egyptians," he said, adding that he was taken aback when the security forces holding him branded him a traitor.

"Anyone with good intentions is the traitor because being evil is the norm," he said. "If I was a traitor, I would have stayed in my villa in the Emirates and made good money and said like others, 'Let this country go to hell.' But we are not traitors," added Ghonim, an Egyptian who oversees Google's marketing in the Middle East and Africa from Dubai, one of the United Arab Emirates.

The protesters already have brought the most sweeping changes since President Hosni Mubarak took power 30 years ago, but they are keeping up the pressure in hopes of achieving their ultimate goal of ousting Mubarak.

Ghonim

has become a hero of the demonstrators since he went missing Jan. 27, two days after the protests began.

Monday, he confirmed reports by protesters that he was the administrator of the Facebook page "We are all Khaled Said" that was one of the main tools for organizing the demonstration that started the movement Jan. 25.

Khaled Said was a 28-year-old businessman who died in June at the hands of undercover police, setting off months of protests against the hated police. The police also have been blamed for inflaming violence by trying to suppress these anti-government demonstrations by force.

Ghonim's whereabouts were not known until Sunday, when a prominent Egyptian businessman confirmed he was under arrest and would soon be released.

"No one literally knew anything about him," since he disappeared, said his second cousin, Hoda Magid, who is studying biology at Santa Clara University. "It wasn't until his release that we knew. We are excited."

Magid, who moved to Fremont with her family a decade ago, saw Ghonim last summer when she and her family returned to their home country.

"I don't think he's the face of the movement," she said of her cousin. "His message is the face of the movement."

Time and again during the two weeks of demonstrations, protesters have pointed proudly to the fact that they have no single leader, as if to say that it is everyone's uprising. Still, there seems at times to be a longing among the crowds at Cairo's Tahrir Square, the main demonstration site, for someone to rally around.

The unmasking of Ghonim as the previously unknown administrator of the Facebook page that started the protests could give the crowds someone to look to for inspiration to press on.

Whether Ghonim forcefully takes up that mantle remains to be seen, but he said repeatedly in Monday night's interview that he did not feel he was a hero.

"I didn't want anyone to know that I am the administrator," he said. "There are no heroes; we are all heroes on the street. And no one is on their horse and fighting with the sword."

Mercury News staff writer Julia Prodis Sulek contributed to this report.

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Crime prediction is becoming a question of technology, not ESP | View Clip
02/08/2011
Bulletin, The

Minneapolis Police Sgt. Jeff Egge points out some hot spots where crime is likely to occur. Richard Tsong-Taatarii / Star Tribune

MINNEAPOLIS — Ryan Hughes, a computer analyst for the Minneapolis Police Department, pulls up a map of the Twin Cities on his screen. "Here, here, here,” he says, pointing to six red dots, each marking a robbery probably committed by the same man. "And here,” he points to another dot, "is where I predicted he would go next.”

Such scenes are becoming more common as more police departments turn to the emerging science of using recent crime data to predict where criminals will strike next.

The potentially revolutionary step could fundamentally alter the nature of police work.

The idea is that everyone, even criminals, are creatures of habit. With enough information about past crimes, it's possible to forecast their future target.

"We usually look at the last week and say, ‘This is what happened in the last week,'” said Minneapolis Chief Tim Dolan. "Well, we've added to that, saying, ‘This is what we think's going to happen next week.'”

Dolan says that kind of thinking has already paid off in north and southwest Minneapolis, areas that led the city last year in reducing overall crime rates.

Looking for patterns

The strategy looks slightly different everywhere it's used, but predictive policing relies mainly on a police department's ability to accumulate deep databases of crime information that detail time, location, methods and numerous other bits of revealing data. Crunched by a computer analyst, the numbers reveal patterns.

That's the task facing a crew of five such crime analysts who work out of a second-floor office in City Hall. Every day, they pore over recent crime data, slicing it different ways and using software to crunch it further. If a pattern emerges, they mark it down for consideration on an internal crime map that gets passed along to the chief for his weekly meeting with top inspectors and lieutenants.

A handful of police departments around the country have spent tens of thousands of dollars on more advanced software, or are working with university researchers and technology companies on algorithms to help them spot crime trends. It's akin to predicting where an earthquake's aftershocks will be felt, says a Santa Clara University mathematician developing formulas for such police work.

As for Hughes' prediction of where the Minneapolis robber would strike next? It was made using free software distributed by the National Institute of Justice. The estimate of the robber's next target turned out to be a mile off. But in the world of crime prediction, that's still counted as a success — the kind of information that could put a patrol car close to the action.

Hughes, who hopes the Minneapolis department will eventually use more high-powered software for predictive policing, said that his maps have accurately predicted the locations of 45 percent of the city's violent crime. "I have a better batting average than Joe Mauer,” he said.

The Pop-Tarts model

To better understand predictive policing, consider the Pop-Tarts story.

Businesses such as Wal-Mart have long anticipated customers' needs based on weather and time of year. Coastal stores knew that as hurricanes approached, customers stocked up on bottled water and duct tape. Those things made sense, but looking more closely at customer data and comparing it to weather patterns, analysts at Wal-Mart noticed that customers anticipating a hurricane also bought more strawberry Pop-Tarts.

It's the sort of anecdote that the emerging industry of predictive policing embraces because it shows how analyzing data can turn up surprises, things that can be used to predict future behavior.

The promise of doing the same thing with crime has prompted some large police departments such as Los Angeles to invest in partnerships with university researchers to devise predictive algorithms or formulas. As exotic as it sounds, it's just the next step in the changing world of police work, said William Bratton, the celebrated former chief of police in L.A. and New York City.

"It's really the continuation of the evolution of policing,” he said.

Starting in the 1990s, when police began using crime reports to identify hot spots, the focus has been on putting police officers near high-crime areas. Putting laptops in squad cars and publishing crime maps helped shorten response time. Now, police departments can quickly analyze a lot of crime data to spot crime trends as they're occurring.

"So after two or three incidents we can put a stop to it instead of waiting for 20 or 30,” said Bratton, who now works as an independent security consultant.

"This is potentially labor-saving,” he said. "That's very important because as we're going into very tough times with public financing, it's going to become more and more critical.”

The hope is that predictive policing will help supplant random patrolling, which studies have shown doesn't work well.

"It's not enough to send people out and expect that they will have an impact on crime,” said Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum in Washington.

How it's working

Minneapolis police estimate that half of the city's most serious crime takes place on 6 percent of its land area. Many of the worst areas are under video surveillance, as the city expands its use of closed circuit cameras. But even within those high crime areas, there might be a few blocks that are particularly rough on any given week, said Sgt. Jeff Egge, the head of the department's Crime Analysis Unit.

His staff of five analysts make predictions by printing color-coded maps that show blocks or small sectors where they expect crimes such as burglary, robbery and aggravated assaults. The techniques are less effective for "episodic” crimes such as homicide, which are more random.

The strategy adds a predictive element to the department's CODEFOR program, begun in 1998 to map the city's crime hot spots.

"When we started CODEFOR, we looked at where crime occurred last week,” said Deputy Chief Rob Allen. "What we've asked people to do is to focus more on where we anticipate crime is going to occur next week. We've made it sort of future-oriented rather than assuming the same patterns will continue.”

It's had its successes, police say.

Last October, two felons walked into the Dunn Brothers coffee shop in Uptown, pistol-whipped one of the two clerks, tied them up in a back room and took a bag of cash.

Witnesses called 911. Police arrived in time to catch the robbers. The two now face federal charges due to their criminal histories.

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Four candidates line up for Riverbank election | View Clip
02/08/2011
TMCnet.com

Three familiar names and one newcomer are vying for a seat on the City Council in the March 8 special election. The candidates are longtime Riverbank Unified School District Trustee John Mitchell, attorney Allison Nobert, court operations manager Jeanine Tucker, and Army veteran and political newcomer Carlos Verduzco. They are running to fill the vacancy created by the July 29 resignation of Councilman Danny Fielder. His seat could not be filled during the Nov. 2 general election. March 8 is the earliest date the city can hold the election, according to state law. The winner will fill the remaining 20 months of Fielder's term. He or she will join a council that has some tough decisions to make, among them: --How to pay for the rising costs of benefits for sheriff's deputies who police the city --Finding more revenue to help the city's Redevelopment Agency meet its debt obligations --Figuring out how to pay for fixes to the sewer system Mitchell, 50, is a former Stanislaus County sheriff's deputy. He took a medical retirement in 1994 after nearly 15 years with the department. Mitchell works in his family's property rental business. He has served on the school board for 15 years; his term expires in November. This is his second attempt to join the City Council. He ran unsuccessfully for mayor in 1996. Mitchell declined to offer details on what he'd do if elected. "I'm sure there are issues," he said. "At this point, I'd leave it up to them (the council) to address them. If I get on, I'll work with them." But Mitchell said he can offer residents and the council the experience he has gained on the school board. switch (VarBucketNo) "When I first got on the school board," he said, "the school district was in financial distress. The other board members were very intelligent. We all worked together to get the school district back on track. I was honored to be part of that." Nobert, 28, is a civil prosecutor for a state agency and finished fourth out of nine candidates in the Nov. 2 election to fill two council seats. In her campaign, Nobert stressed job growth and economic development. She also said the city should redouble its efforts to develop the former Riverbank Army Ammunition Plant into an industrial park. "Job creation should be everyone's main focus in Riverbank," she said. "A prosperous local economy is good for public safety, families and our future." Nobert stresses the same themes in her current campaign, but with greater urgency. "I strongly believe we can no longer afford to function under the 'business as usual' model," she said in an e-mail. "The current financial strains, coupled with the huge job losses that have hit our city, have created a recipe for disaster. We must act smarter and quicker than anyone who has come before us." Tucker, 54, is the operations manager for Stanislaus County Superior Court and has a law degree from Santa Clara University. She finished third in the Nov. 2 council election. Tucker said her campaign message remains the same: "It's primarily jobs, jobs, jobs and public safety." She said public safety includes keeping pedestrians safe. One pedestrian has been killed and two seriously injured in recent years after being hit by vehicles. Tucker said she has the support of many prominent residents, including Mayor Virginia Madueno and Councilwoman Dotty Ny-gard. Verduzco, 29, served in the Army for nine years until leaving in February 2009. He is in the Army Reserve while working on his business management degree from the University of Phoenix. Verduzco, who grew up in Riverbank, said his time in the Army taught him how to get along with people from different backgrounds and be a team player. Verduzco said he was prompted to run for City Council because of the bickering among some members, although that has died out since the Nov. 2 election and the seating of two new council members. He said there is a disconnect between city residents and businesses and their elected officials. "Riverbank is a great city. I want to bridge the disconnect we have." Bee staff writer Kevin Valine can be reached at kvaline@modbee.com or 578-2316. To see more of The Modesto Bee, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.modbee.com/. Copyright (c) 2011, The Modesto Bee, Calif. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services. For more information about the content services offered by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services (MCT), visit www.mctinfoservices.com.

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Police Working to Target Future Crimes | View Clip
02/08/2011
Officer.com

"Here, here, here," he begins, pointing to six red dots. Each marks a robbery probably committed by the same man.

"And here," Hughes continues, pointing to a dot just northeast of Minneapolis, "is where I predicted he would go next."

Simple as a crime map, seemingly as far-fetched as ESP, such scenes are becoming more common. Police departments from Minneapolis to Los Angeles are turning to the emerging science of using recent crime data to predict where criminals will strike next.

The potentially revolutionary step could fundamentally alter the nature of police work.

The idea is that everyone, even criminals, are creatures of habit. With enough information about past crimes, it's possible to forecast their future target.

"We usually look at the last week and say, 'This is what happened in the last week,' " said Minneapolis Chief Tim Dolan. "Well we've added to that, saying, 'This is what we think's going to happen next week.' "

That kind of thinking has just begun in Minneapolis, but Dolan says it's already paid off in north and southwest Minneapolis, areas that led the city last year in reducing overall crime rates.

The strategy looks slightly different everywhere it's used, but predictive policing relies mainly on a police department's ability to accumulate deep databases of crime information that detail time, location, methods and numerous other bits of revealing data. Crunched by a computer analyst, the numbers reveal patterns.

That's the task facing a crew of five such crime analysts who work out of a second floor office in City Hall. Every day, they pore over recent crime data, slicing it different ways and sometimes using software to crunch it further. If a pattern emerges, they mark it down for consideration on an internal crime map that gets passed along to the chief for his weekly meeting with top inspectors and lieutenants.

A handful of police departments around the country have spent tens of thousands of dollars on more advanced software, or are working with university researchers and technology companies on algorithms to help them spot crime trends. It's akin to predicting where an earthquake's aftershocks will be felt, says a Santa Clara University mathematician developing formulas for such police work.

As for Hughes' prediction of where the Minneapolis robber would strike next? It was made using free software distributed by the National Institute of Justice. The software examines the location and timing of each crime to draw its conclusions. The estimate of the robber's next target turned out to be a mile off. But in the world of crime prediction, that's still counted as a success -- the kind of information that could put a patrol car close to the action.

Hughes, who hopes the Minneapolis department will eventually use more high-powered software for predictive policing, said that his maps have accurately predicted the locations of 45 percent of the city's violent crime. "I have a better batting average than Joe Mauer," Hughes said.

To better understand predictive policing, consider the Pop-Tarts story.

Businesses such as Wal-Mart have long anticipated customers' needs based on weather and time of year. Coastal stores knew that as hurricanes approached, customers stocked up on bottled water and duct tape. Those things made sense, but looking more closely at customer data and comparing it to weather patterns, analysts at Wal-Mart noticed that customers anticipating a hurricane also bought more strawberry Pop-Tarts.

It's the sort of anecdote that the emerging industry of predictive policing embraces because it shows how analyzing data can turn up surprises, things that can be used to predict future behavior.

The promise of doing the same thing with crime has prompted some large police departments such as Los Angeles to invest in partnerships with university researchers to devise predictive algorithms or formulas. As exotic as it sounds, it's just the next step in the changing world of police work, said William Bratton, the celebrated former chief of police in Los Angeles and New York City.

"It's really the continuation of the evolution of policing," Bratton said. Starting in the 1990s, when police began using crime reports to identify hot spots, the focus has been on putting police officers near high-crime areas. Putting laptops in squad cars and publishing crime maps helped shorten response time. Now, police departments can quickly analyze a lot of crime data to spot crime trends as they're occurring.

"So after two or three incidents we can put a stop to it instead of waiting for 20 or 30," said Bratton, who now works as an independent security consultant.

"This is potentially labor-saving," he said. "That's very important because as we're going into very tough times with public financing, it's going to become more and more critical."

The hope is that predictive policing will help supplant random patrolling, which studies have shown doesn't work well.

"It's not enough to send people out and expect that they will have an impact on crime," said Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum in Washington.

Minneapolis police estimate that half of the city's most serious crime takes place on 6 percent of its land area. Many of the worst areas are under video surveillance, as the city expands its use of closed circuit cameras. But even within those high crime areas, there might be a few blocks that are particularly rough on any given week, said Sgt. Jeff Egge, the head of the department's Crime Analysis Unit.

His staff of five analysts make predictions by printing color-coded maps that show blocks or small sectors where they expect crimes such as burglary, robbery and aggravated assaults. The techniques are less effective for "episodic" crimes such as homicide, which are more random.

The strategy adds a predictive element to the department's CODEFOR program, begun in 1998 to map the city's crime hot spots.

"When we started CODEFOR, we looked at where crime occurred last week," said Deputy Chief Rob Allen. "What we've asked people to do is to focus more on where we anticipate crime is going to occur next week.

We've made it sort of future-oriented rather than assuming the same patterns will continue."

It's had its successes, police say.

Last October, two felons walked into the Dunn Brothers coffee shop in Uptown, pistol-whipped one of the two clerks, tied them up in a back room and took a bag of cash.

Witnesses called 911. Police arrived in time to catch the robbers. The two now face federal charges due to their criminal histories.

Fifth Precinct Inspector Ed Frizell said it was no coincidence that officers arrived so quickly. Fifth Precinct officers were looking out for storefront robberies along Lake Street as part of the precinct's predictive analysis.

"The officers of the Fifth Precinct have absolutely made this thing work," Frizell said. "They have total buy-in."

Frizell said he knows the color-coded maps issued by the Crime Analysis Unit are taken seriously by his patrol officers because he sees them taking notes off of fresh maps hung in the precinct.

It's easier than handing an officer a stack of the latest intelligence, said Lt. Jeff Rugel, who runs the Gang Enforcement Team out of the department's new strategic information center. "A commander issuing orders can say, 'See where it's red? Go be where it's red,' " Rugel said.

"It makes it very easy to see what's going on as opposed to charts and charts of data."

It can be tough to gauge the success of predictive policing because analysts don't know whether added police presence at predicted hot spots deters the predicted crime.

"You can't measure things that don't happen," said Capt. Amelia Huffman, commander of the criminal investigations division.

If a prediction helps police catch someone doing a lot of crimes, the effect on local crime rates can be remarkable. For example, said Huffman, if a prolific burglar is captured, burglary dots on the weekly crime maps will "melt away."

Sometimes, predictive policing looks a lot more like common sense than science fiction, said Egge, who gave the example of how his unit analyzed years of data on burglaries that occurred each year during the week the University of Minnesota started classes.

Laptops, GPS units, iPods and other expensive items are often left in cars or hallways as students unpack, and many are stolen.

This past fall, crime analysts Hughes and Susan McPhee came up with maps of the Dinkytown area that highlighted the spots that historically have the most crime during opening week. Then crime prevention specialists warned students in that area to use caution while officers kept an eye on the worst spots. Crimes were down sharply, police said.

In December, Chief Dolan spoke at the grand opening of a police intelligence center where a few officers can monitor hundreds of live video feeds from across the city on three movie screens. They just have to know where to look.

Dolan said predictive policing has just begun in Minneapolis and will grow as the department becomes more accustomed to it. In the end, he said, it's just one more tool to put police where they should be.

Return to Top



Targeting the next crime | View Clip
02/08/2011
Regina Leader-Post - Online

Sgt. Jeff Egge runs the Crime Analysis Unit. Using crime data and software, his team is able to point out hotspots where crime is likely to occur.

Photograph by: Richard Tsong-Taatarii, Minneapolis Star Tribune/MCT

MINNEAPOLIS — Ryan Hughes, a young, spiky-haired computer analyst for the Minneapolis Police Department, pulls up a map of the Twin Cities on his screen.

"Here, here, here," he begins, pointing to six red dots. Each marks a robbery probably committed by the same man.

"And here," Hughes continues, pointing to a dot just northeast of Minneapolis, "is where I predicted he would go next."

Simple as a crime map, seemingly as far-fetched as ESP, such scenes are becoming more common. Police departments from Minneapolis to Los Angeles are turning to the emerging science of using recent crime data to predict where criminals will strike next.

The potentially revolutionary step could fundamentally alter the nature of police work.

The idea is that everyone, even criminals, are creatures of habit. With enough information about past crimes, it's possible to forecast their future target.

"We usually look at the last week and say, 'This is what happened in the last week,' " said Minneapolis Chief Tim Dolan. "Well we've added to that, saying, 'This is what we think's going to happen next week.' "

That kind of thinking has just begun in Minneapolis, but Dolan says it's already paid off in north and southwest Minneapolis, areas that led the city last year in reducing overall crime rates.

The strategy looks slightly different everywhere it's used, but predictive policing relies mainly on a police department's ability to accumulate deep databases of crime information that detail time, location, methods and numerous other bits of revealing data. Crunched by a computer analyst, the numbers reveal patterns.

That's the task facing a crew of five such crime analysts who work out of a second floor office in City Hall. Every day, they pore over recent crime data, slicing it different ways and sometimes using software to crunch it further. If a pattern emerges, they mark it down for consideration on an internal crime map that gets passed along to the chief for his weekly meeting with top inspectors and lieutenants.

A handful of police departments around the country have spent tens of thousands of dollars on more advanced software, or are working with university researchers and technology companies on algorithms to help them spot crime trends. It's akin to predicting where an earthquake's aftershocks will be felt, says a Santa Clara University mathematician developing formulas for such police work.

As for Hughes' prediction of where the Minneapolis robber would strike next? It was made using free software distributed by the National Institute of Justice. The software examines the location and timing of each crime to draw its conclusions. The estimate of the robber's next target turned out to be a mile off. But in the world of crime prediction, that's still counted as a success _ the kind of information that could put a patrol car close to the action.

Hughes, who hopes the Minneapolis department will eventually use more high-powered software for predictive policing, said that his maps have accurately predicted the locations of 45 per cent of the city's violent crime.

"I have a better batting average than Joe Mauer," Hughes said.

To better understand predictive policing, consider the Pop-Tarts story.

Businesses such as Wal-Mart have long anticipated customers' needs based on weather and time of year. Coastal stores knew that as hurricanes approached, customers stocked up on bottled water and duct tape. Those things made sense, but looking more closely at customer data and comparing it to weather patterns, analysts at Wal-Mart noticed that customers anticipating a hurricane also bought more strawberry Pop-Tarts.

It's the sort of anecdote that the emerging industry of predictive policing embraces because it shows how analyzing data can turn up surprises, things that can be used to predict future behavior.

The promise of doing the same thing with crime has prompted some large police departments such as Los Angeles to invest in partnerships with university researchers to devise predictive algorithms or formulas. As exotic as it sounds, it's just the next step in the changing world of police work, said William Bratton, the celebrated former chief of police in Los Angeles and New York City.

"It's really the continuation of the evolution of policing," Bratton said.

Starting in the 1990s, when police began using crime reports to identify hot spots, the focus has been on putting police officers near high-crime areas. Putting laptops in squad cars and publishing crime maps helped shorten response time. Now, police departments can quickly analyze a lot of crime data to spot crime trends as they're occurring.

"So after two or three incidents we can put a stop to it instead of waiting for 20 or 30," said Bratton, who now works as an independent security consultant.

"This is potentially labor-saving," he said. "That's very important because as we're going into very tough times with public financing, it's going to become more and more critical."

The hope is that predictive policing will help supplant random patrolling, which studies have shown doesn't work well.

"It's not enough to send people out and expect that they will have an impact on crime," said Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum in Washington.

Minneapolis police estimate that half of the city's most serious crime takes place on 6 per cent of its land area. Many of the worst areas are under video surveillance, as the city expands its use of closed circuit cameras. But even within those high crime areas, there might be a few blocks that are particularly rough on any given week, said Sgt. Jeff Egge, the head of the department's Crime Analysis Unit.

His staff of five analysts make predictions by printing color-coded maps that show blocks or small sectors where they expect crimes such as burglary, robbery and aggravated assaults. The techniques are less effective for "episodic" crimes such as homicide, which are more random.

The strategy adds a predictive element to the department's CODEFOR program, begun in 1998 to map the city's crime hot spots.

"When we started CODEFOR, we looked at where crime occurred last week," said Deputy Chief Rob Allen. "What we've asked people to do is to focus more on where we anticipate crime is going to occur next week. We've made it sort of future-oriented rather than assuming the same patterns will continue."

It's had its successes, police say.

Last October, two felons walked into the Dunn Brothers coffee shop in Uptown, pistol-whipped one of the two clerks, tied them up in a back room and took a bag of cash.

Witnesses called 911. Police arrived in time to catch the robbers. The two now face federal charges due to their criminal histories.

Fifth Precinct Inspector Ed Frizell said it was no coincidence that officers arrived so quickly. Fifth Precinct officers were looking out for storefront robberies along Lake Street as part of the precinct's predictive analysis.

"The officers of the Fifth Precinct have absolutely made this thing work," Frizell said. "They have total buy-in."

Frizell said he knows the color-coded maps issued by the Crime Analysis Unit are taken seriously by his patrol officers because he sees them taking notes off of fresh maps hung in the precinct.

It's easier than handing an officer a stack of the latest intelligence, said Lt. Jeff Rugel, who runs the Gang Enforcement Team out of the department's new strategic information center. "A commander issuing orders can say, 'See where it's red? Go be where it's red,' " Rugel said. "It makes it very easy to see what's going on as opposed to charts and charts of data."

It can be tough to gauge the success of predictive policing because analysts don't know whether added police presence at predicted hot spots deters the predicted crime.

"You can't measure things that don't happen," said Capt. Amelia Huffman, commander of the criminal investigations division.

If a prediction helps police catch someone doing a lot of crimes, the effect on local crime rates can be remarkable. For example, said Huffman, if a prolific burglar is captured, burglary dots on the weekly crime maps will "melt away."

Sometimes, predictive policing looks a lot more like common sense than science fiction, said Egge, who gave the example of how his unit analyzed years of data on burglaries that occurred each year during the week the University of Minnesota started classes.

Laptops, GPS units, iPods and other expensive items are often left in cars or hallways as students unpack, and many are stolen.

This past fall, crime analysts Hughes and Susan McPhee came up with maps of the Dinkytown area that highlighted the spots that historically have the most crime during opening week. Then crime prevention specialists warned students in that area to use caution while officers kept an eye on the worst spots. Crimes were down sharply, police said.

In December, Chief Dolan spoke at the grand opening of a police intelligence center where a few officers can monitor hundreds of live video feeds from across the city on three movie screens. They just have to know where to look.

Dolan said predictive policing has just begun in Minneapolis and will grow as the department becomes more accustomed to it. In the end, he said, it's just one more tool to put police where they should be.

"The most efficient thing we can do is prevent a crime," Dolan said. "Solving a crime is all good once a crime's occurred. It is much more efficient to be trying to prevent crime for a community."

© Copyright (c) McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

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Targeting the next crime | View Clip
02/08/2011
StarPhoenix - Online, The

MINNEAPOLIS — Ryan Hughes, a young, spiky-haired computer analyst for the Minneapolis Police Department, pulls up a map of the Twin Cities on his screen.

"Here, here, here," he begins, pointing to six red dots. Each marks a robbery probably committed by the same man.

"And here," Hughes continues, pointing to a dot just northeast of Minneapolis, "is where I predicted he would go next."

Simple as a crime map, seemingly as far-fetched as ESP, such scenes are becoming more common. Police departments from Minneapolis to Los Angeles are turning to the emerging science of using recent crime data to predict where criminals will strike next.

The potentially revolutionary step could fundamentally alter the nature of police work.

The idea is that everyone, even criminals, are creatures of habit. With enough information about past crimes, it's possible to forecast their future target.

"We usually look at the last week and say, 'This is what happened in the last week,' " said Minneapolis Chief Tim Dolan. "Well we've added to that, saying, 'This is what we think's going to happen next week.' "

That kind of thinking has just begun in Minneapolis, but Dolan says it's already paid off in north and southwest Minneapolis, areas that led the city last year in reducing overall crime rates.

The strategy looks slightly different everywhere it's used, but predictive policing relies mainly on a police department's ability to accumulate deep databases of crime information that detail time, location, methods and numerous other bits of revealing data. Crunched by a computer analyst, the numbers reveal patterns.

That's the task facing a crew of five such crime analysts who work out of a second floor office in City Hall. Every day, they pore over recent crime data, slicing it different ways and sometimes using software to crunch it further. If a pattern emerges, they mark it down for consideration on an internal crime map that gets passed along to the chief for his weekly meeting with top inspectors and lieutenants.

A handful of police departments around the country have spent tens of thousands of dollars on more advanced software, or are working with university researchers and technology companies on algorithms to help them spot crime trends. It's akin to predicting where an earthquake's aftershocks will be felt, says a Santa Clara University mathematician developing formulas for such police work.

As for Hughes' prediction of where the Minneapolis robber would strike next? It was made using free software distributed by the National Institute of Justice. The software examines the location and timing of each crime to draw its conclusions. The estimate of the robber's next target turned out to be a mile off. But in the world of crime prediction, that's still counted as a success _ the kind of information that could put a patrol car close to the action.

Hughes, who hopes the Minneapolis department will eventually use more high-powered software for predictive policing, said that his maps have accurately predicted the locations of 45 per cent of the city's violent crime.

"I have a better batting average than Joe Mauer," Hughes said.

To better understand predictive policing, consider the Pop-Tarts story.

Businesses such as Wal-Mart have long anticipated customers' needs based on weather and time of year. Coastal stores knew that as hurricanes approached, customers stocked up on bottled water and duct tape. Those things made sense, but looking more closely at customer data and comparing it to weather patterns, analysts at Wal-Mart noticed that customers anticipating a hurricane also bought more strawberry Pop-Tarts.

It's the sort of anecdote that the emerging industry of predictive policing embraces because it shows how analyzing data can turn up surprises, things that can be used to predict future behavior.

The promise of doing the same thing with crime has prompted some large police departments such as Los Angeles to invest in partnerships with university researchers to devise predictive algorithms or formulas. As exotic as it sounds, it's just the next step in the changing world of police work, said William Bratton, the celebrated former chief of police in Los Angeles and New York City.

"It's really the continuation of the evolution of policing," Bratton said.

Starting in the 1990s, when police began using crime reports to identify hot spots, the focus has been on putting police officers near high-crime areas. Putting laptops in squad cars and publishing crime maps helped shorten response time. Now, police departments can quickly analyze a lot of crime data to spot crime trends as they're occurring.

"So after two or three incidents we can put a stop to it instead of waiting for 20 or 30," said Bratton, who now works as an independent security consultant.

"This is potentially labor-saving," he said. "That's very important because as we're going into very tough times with public financing, it's going to become more and more critical."

The hope is that predictive policing will help supplant random patrolling, which studies have shown doesn't work well.

"It's not enough to send people out and expect that they will have an impact on crime," said Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum in Washington.

Minneapolis police estimate that half of the city's most serious crime takes place on 6 per cent of its land area. Many of the worst areas are under video surveillance, as the city expands its use of closed circuit cameras. But even within those high crime areas, there might be a few blocks that are particularly rough on any given week, said Sgt. Jeff Egge, the head of the department's Crime Analysis Unit.

His staff of five analysts make predictions by printing color-coded maps that show blocks or small sectors where they expect crimes such as burglary, robbery and aggravated assaults. The techniques are less effective for "episodic" crimes such as homicide, which are more random.

The strategy adds a predictive element to the department's CODEFOR program, begun in 1998 to map the city's crime hot spots.

"When we started CODEFOR, we looked at where crime occurred last week," said Deputy Chief Rob Allen. "What we've asked people to do is to focus more on where we anticipate crime is going to occur next week. We've made it sort of future-oriented rather than assuming the same patterns will continue."

It's had its successes, police say.

Last October, two felons walked into the Dunn Brothers coffee shop in Uptown, pistol-whipped one of the two clerks, tied them up in a back room and took a bag of cash.

Witnesses called 911. Police arrived in time to catch the robbers. The two now face federal charges due to their criminal histories.

Fifth Precinct Inspector Ed Frizell said it was no coincidence that officers arrived so quickly. Fifth Precinct officers were looking out for storefront robberies along Lake Street as part of the precinct's predictive analysis.

"The officers of the Fifth Precinct have absolutely made this thing work," Frizell said. "They have total buy-in."

Frizell said he knows the color-coded maps issued by the Crime Analysis Unit are taken seriously by his patrol officers because he sees them taking notes off of fresh maps hung in the precinct.

It's easier than handing an officer a stack of the latest intelligence, said Lt. Jeff Rugel, who runs the Gang Enforcement Team out of the department's new strategic information center. "A commander issuing orders can say, 'See where it's red? Go be where it's red,' " Rugel said. "It makes it very easy to see what's going on as opposed to charts and charts of data."

It can be tough to gauge the success of predictive policing because analysts don't know whether added police presence at predicted hot spots deters the predicted crime.

"You can't measure things that don't happen," said Capt. Amelia Huffman, commander of the criminal investigations division.

If a prediction helps police catch someone doing a lot of crimes, the effect on local crime rates can be remarkable. For example, said Huffman, if a prolific burglar is captured, burglary dots on the weekly crime maps will "melt away."

Sometimes, predictive policing looks a lot more like common sense than science fiction, said Egge, who gave the example of how his unit analyzed years of data on burglaries that occurred each year during the week the University of Minnesota started classes.

Laptops, GPS units, iPods and other expensive items are often left in cars or hallways as students unpack, and many are stolen.

This past fall, crime analysts Hughes and Susan McPhee came up with maps of the Dinkytown area that highlighted the spots that historically have the most crime during opening week. Then crime prevention specialists warned students in that area to use caution while officers kept an eye on the worst spots. Crimes were down sharply, police said.

In December, Chief Dolan spoke at the grand opening of a police intelligence center where a few officers can monitor hundreds of live video feeds from across the city on three movie screens. They just have to know where to look.

Dolan said predictive policing has just begun in Minneapolis and will grow as the department becomes more accustomed to it. In the end, he said, it's just one more tool to put police where they should be.

"The most efficient thing we can do is prevent a crime," Dolan said. "Solving a crime is all good once a crime's occurred. It is much more efficient to be trying to prevent crime for a community."

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HIS SECOND COUSIN SPOKE TO REPORTERS AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY WHERE SHE IS A STUDENT.
02/07/2011
CBS 5 Eyewitness News At 11 PM - KPIX-TV

THE GOOGLE EXECUTIVE RELEASED BY EGYPTIAN AUTHORITIES SAY HE WAS BEHIND THE FACE BOOKS POSTS THAT STARTED THE DEMONSTRATIONS. HE WAS BLIND FOLDED MOST OF HIS CAPTURE BUT HIS FAMILY DIDN'T KNOW WHERE HE WAS. Translator: PLEASE DON'T MAKE A HERO OUT OF ME BECAUSE I'M NOT ONE. I HAVE BEEN SLEEPING FOR 12 DAYS. THE ONES WHO ARE HEROES ARE THE ONES KILLED IN THE STREETS. HE IS NOT IN IT FOR THE FAME, HE IS IN IT TO GET HIS MESSAGE ACROSS. HIS SECOND COUSIN SPOKE TO REPORTERS AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY WHERE SHE IS A STUDENT. THE GOOGLE EXEC. IS AN EGYPTIAN NATIONAL AND WORKS IN DUBAI.

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ONE OF HIS COUSINS IS A STUDENT AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY.
02/07/2011
ABC 7 Weekend News at 5 PM - KGO-TV

12 DAYS AFTER BEING ARRESTED BY EGYPTIAN POLICE A YOUNG GOOGLE EXECUTIVE IS SET FREE. HE SAYS HE'S BEHIND A FACEBOOK PAGE THAT HELPED SPARK A REVOLUTION. DESPITE THE ORDEAL HE ISN'T DONE WITH PROTESTING. HE WEPT AS HE TALKED TO A REPORTER SAYING THIS IS THE REVOLUTION OF THE YOUTH OF THE INTERNET. ABC 7 IS HERE NOW WITH MORE ON THIS INCREDIBLE DRAMA. Reporter: THE FIRST THING HE DID WAS TWEET HIS FOLLOWERS. AND THIS MORNING HE HAD MORE THAN 12,000 OF THEM, THEN SPOKE TO A TELEVISION STATION AND SAYS IT WAS TORTURE TO BE BEHIND BARS. AND HIS FAMILY, SOME IN THE BAY AREA GLAD HE'S ALIVE. WITHIN HOURS OF BEING RELEASED HE WAS BACK ON THE STREETS PROTESTING. HE SPOKE WITH EGYPTIAN TV. I'M NOT A HERO. THE REAL HEROES ARE BEHIND THIS REVOLUTION. BY GOD'S WILL WE'RE GOING TO CLEAN THIS COUNTRY OF THE RUBBISH. Reporter: HE FIRST ANNOUNCED THE RELEASE THROUGH TWITTER, FREEDOM IS A BLESS THAT DESERVES FIGHTING FOR IT. ONE OF HIS COUSINS IS A STUDENT AT SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY. IT'S EXCITING BUT I'M PRETTY SURE THE FIRST THING AFTER HE DID WAS GO TO THE SQUARE AGAIN. HE'S NOT KNIT FOR FAME. HE'S IN IT TO GET THE MESSAGE ACROSS. Reporter: THE 30-YEAR-OLD FATHER OF TWO IS BASED IN DUBAI, WORKING FOR GOOGLE. HE HAD BEEN RUNNING SOCIAL NETWORKING SITES CRITICIZING THE EGYPTIAN PRESIDENT. IT WAS BELIEVED THIS VIDEO SHOWED HIM BEING TAKEN INTO CUSTODY BY POLICE. DURING A DEMONSTRATION IN CAIRO ON JANUARY 28th. HE NOW SAID THIS HAPPENED MUCH MORE PRIVATELY IN, AN ALLEY WHERE FOUR MEN SUDDENLY SURROUNDED HIM. FOR DAYS HIS WHEREABOUTS WERE UNKNOWN. MEMBERS OF AN EGYPTIAN OPPOSITION GROUP MET WITH VICE PRESIDENT SULEMAN TO ASK FOR HIS RELEASE. A GOOGLE SPOKESPERSON ISSUED THIS STATEMENT. IT'S A HUGE RELIEF HE HAS BEEN RELEASED. WE SEND OUR BEST WISHES TO HIM AND HIS FAMILY. GREG FROM MOUNTAIN VIEW IS A FORMER COLLEAGUE. I DON'T THINK THERE IS A QUESTION THAT TWITTER AND FACEBOOK WERE HUGE IN THIS LAST COUPLE WEEK'S SERIES OF EVENTS. AMAN IS HIS COUSIN AND SPOKE TO US FROM PHILADELPHIA. THERE IS A MIXED FEELING THAT THESE PROTESTS, THOUGH IT MIGHT OF COURSE IMPACT THE DEPARTURE OF MUBARAK BUT IS HURTING THE COUNTRY THE LONGER IT TAKES TO HAVE A STABLE SOLUTION FOR EGYPT. Reporter: AND HE TOLD US HE HAS BEEN IN CONTACT WITH HIS WIFE. HE WROTE ON TWITTER THAT HE WENT TO CAIRO AGAINST HIS FAMILY'S WISHES. BY THE WAY ONE TRAIT HE LISTS ON A TWITTER PROFILE IS THAT HE LOVES CHALLENGING THE STATUS QUO. HE'S DONE THAT. THANK YOU.

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Reporter: WAEL GHONIM'S SECOND COUSIN ATTENDS SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY.
02/07/2011
Channel 2 News at Noon - KTVU-TV

GOOD AFTERNOON. GOOD NEWS FOR MAN WHO DISAPPEARED TEN DAYS AGO AFTER JOINING PROTESTS IN EGYPT HAS BEEN RELEASED. JADE HERNANDEZ SPOKE TO A FAMILY OF WAEL GHONIM FOR RETHEIR REACTION FOR FOR THEIR REACTION. Reporter: GOOD AFTERNOON. GHONIM TWEETED "FREEDOM IS A BLESSING THAT DESERVES FIGHTING FOR. " IT'S THE ONLY TWEET SO FAR BUT THE STATE DEPARTMENT CONFIRMED AS DID GOOGLE WHERE GHONIM WAS FREED. HE'S BEEN IN CUSTODY SINCE THE FIRST DAY OF THE PROTEST IN CAIRO. NEWS OF THE EGYPTIAN GOVERNMENT HAS NOT SPREAD. WE FOLLOWED VIA "REUTERS" THAT CONFIRMED HE WAS FREED AN HOUR AND A HALF LATER. HE WAS RELEASED. HE DIDN'T DIRECTLY GO TO THE FAMILY COMPANY. HE WENT TO THE HUNTER THE HUNTER'S SQUARE AFTER THAT TO PROTEST. HE'S REALLY INVOLVED WITH EGYPT. Reporter: WAEL GHONIM'S SECOND COUSIN ATTENDS SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY. WE SPOKE TO HER THIS MORNING. SHE SAID SHE'S SHE'S TRYING TO FOLLOW IN HER COUSIN'S FOOTSTEPS. SOMEONE WHO WAS BORN THERE, I WOULD GIVE ANYTHING TO BE THERE. MY FATHER IS THERE. WE WERE PROTESTING IN SAN FRANCISCO TO SHOW OUR SOLID AIRTY TO THE PEOPLE OF EGYPT. Reporter: GHONIM WAS ONE OF THE FIRST PEOPLE WHO CALLED FOR THIS PROTEST IN CAIRO. THIS VIDEO WAS POSTED ON YOUTUBE WHICH WORRIED FAMILY MEMBERS BECAUSE IT FOLLOWED A CROWD OF YOUNG MEN ON THE STREET AND WE THEM DRAGGING HIM OFF. A GOOGLE'S SPOKESPERSON COULDN'T CONFIRM IF THE VIDEO WAS AUTHENTIC. WE ASKED IF HE'S IF HE WAS FREED. THEY CONFIRMED HE WAS. AND WE UNDERSTAND HE'S PROTESTING IN EGYPT THIS AFTERNOON. JADE HER HERNANDEZ, KTVU CHANNEL 2 NEWS.

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Santa Clara University Student Speaks Out About the Political Crisis in Egypt | View Clip
02/07/2011
KNTV-TV

Santa Clara University Hoda Magid reacts to the reelase of her cousin, Wael Ghonim, a Google executive, who was captured in Egypt.

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Santa Clara University Student Speaks Out About the Political Crisis in Egypt
02/07/2011
KGO-AM

Santa Clara University student Hoda Magid spoke to Rob Artigo about her cousin, Wael Ghonim, a Google executive, who was captured and released in Egypt.

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Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame Monday February 07, 2011 20:29:00 EST | View Clip
02/07/2011
Quote.com India

The Silicon Valley Engineering Council (SVEC) will induct Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup into the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame on Feb. 24.

The Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of engineers, technical leaders, and scientists in the Silicon Valley region who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and have made significant contributions to the Silicon Valley community and the Greater Bay Area communities.

Shoup has written more than 100 technical papers on mechanical design and applied mechanisms, and is the co-author of the book Design of Machine Elements. He has received numerous honors, including the Distinguished Service Award of the International Federation for the Theory of Machines and Mechanisms in 2007, the Rodney D. Chipp Memorial Award of the Society of Women Engineers in 2002, and the Distinguished Service Award from the ASME Council on Education in 1988.

Shoup has been at SCU since 1989, where he currently teaches mechanical engineering and is also the interim executive director for international programs. He served as the School of Engineering dean for 13 years, overseeing six academic departments, 40 full-time faculty, 600 undergraduate students, and 800 graduate students. During his time as dean, Shoup established a merit scholarship program that helped to raise the average SAT score for the engineering freshman class by 125 points. He also inaugurated a group of five programs to serve underrepresented high school students and to encourage them to undertake college study/engineering careers. In the past 10 years, more than 1,200 students have benefited from these programs. Shoup also created the nation's first "degree warranty" program whereby SCU engineering graduates can return to campus and take graduate courses tuition-free if they are ever laid off from their jobs.

Shoup started his academic career at Ohio State University, where he received his bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering. In 1969, he became an assistant professor at Rutgers University, later teaching at the University of Houston. He became assistant dean of Texas A&M University in 1980 and the dean at Florida

Atlantic University in 1983.

The SVEC Annual Engineers Week Dinner and Hall of Fame Awards will take place Thursday, Feb. 24 from 5--9:30 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel in San Jose.

About Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University is a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California's Silicon Valley. Santa Clara offers its more than 8,800 students rigorous undergraduate programs in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master's degrees in a number of professional fields, law degrees, and engineering and theology doctorates. Distinguished by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master's universities, Santa Clara educates leaders of competence, conscience, and compassion grounded in faith-inspired values. Founded in 1851, Santa Clara is California's oldest operating institution of higher education. For more information, see www.scu.edu.

SOURCE: Santa Clara University

Copyright Business Wire 2011

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Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame Monday February 07, 2011 20:29:00 EST | View Clip
02/07/2011
Quote.com Canada

The Silicon Valley Engineering Council (SVEC) will induct Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup into the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame on Feb. 24.

The Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of engineers, technical leaders, and scientists in the Silicon Valley region who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and have made significant contributions to the Silicon Valley community and the Greater Bay Area communities.

Shoup has written more than 100 technical papers on mechanical design and applied mechanisms, and is the co-author of the book Design of Machine Elements. He has received numerous honors, including the Distinguished Service Award of the International Federation for the Theory of Machines and Mechanisms in 2007, the Rodney D. Chipp Memorial Award of the Society of Women Engineers in 2002, and the Distinguished Service Award from the ASME Council on Education in 1988.

Shoup has been at SCU since 1989, where he currently teaches mechanical engineering and is also the interim executive director for international programs. He served as the School of Engineering dean for 13 years, overseeing six academic departments, 40 full-time faculty, 600 undergraduate students, and 800 graduate students. During his time as dean, Shoup established a merit scholarship program that helped to raise the average SAT score for the engineering freshman class by 125 points. He also inaugurated a group of five programs to serve underrepresented high school students and to encourage them to undertake college study/engineering careers. In the past 10 years, more than 1,200 students have benefited from these programs. Shoup also created the nation's first "degree warranty" program whereby SCU engineering graduates can return to campus and take graduate courses tuition-free if they are ever laid off from their jobs.

Shoup started his academic career at Ohio State University, where he received his bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering. In 1969, he became an assistant professor at Rutgers University, later teaching at the University of Houston. He became assistant dean of Texas A&M University in 1980 and the dean at Florida

Atlantic University in 1983.

The SVEC Annual Engineers Week Dinner and Hall of Fame Awards will take place Thursday, Feb. 24 from 5--9:30 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel in San Jose.

About Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University is a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California's Silicon Valley. Santa Clara offers its more than 8,800 students rigorous undergraduate programs in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master's degrees in a number of professional fields, law degrees, and engineering and theology doctorates. Distinguished by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master's universities, Santa Clara educates leaders of competence, conscience, and compassion grounded in faith-inspired values. Founded in 1851, Santa Clara is California's oldest operating institution of higher education. For more information, see www.scu.edu.

SOURCE: Santa Clara University

Copyright Business Wire 2011

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Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame | View Clip
02/07/2011
Canadian Industrial Equipment News (CIEN)

The Silicon Valley Engineering Council (SVEC) will induct Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup into the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame on Feb. 24.

The Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of engineers, technical leaders, and scientists in the Silicon Valley region who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and have made significant contributions to the Silicon Valley community and the Greater Bay Area communities.

Shoup has written more than 100 technical papers on mechanical design and applied mechanisms, and is the co-author of the book Design of Machine Elements. He has received numerous honors, including the Distinguished Service Award of the International Federation for the Theory of Machines and Mechanisms in 2007, the Rodney D. Chipp Memorial Award of the Society of Women Engineers in 2002, and the Distinguished Service Award from the ASME Council on Education in 1988.

Shoup has been at SCU since 1989, where he currently teaches mechanical engineering and is also the interim executive director for international programs. He served as the School of Engineering dean for 13 years, overseeing six academic departments, 40 full-time faculty, 600 undergraduate students, and 800 graduate students. During his time as dean, Shoup established a merit scholarship program that helped to raise the average SAT score for the engineering freshman class by 125 points. He also inaugurated a group of five programs to serve underrepresented high school students and to encourage them to undertake college study/engineering careers. In the past 10 years, more than 1,200 students have benefited from these programs. Shoup also created the nation¿s first ¿degree warranty¿ program whereby SCU engineering graduates can return to campus and take graduate courses tuition-free if they are ever laid off from their jobs.

Shoup started his academic career at Ohio State University, where he received his bachelor¿s, master¿s, and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering. In 1969, he became an assistant professor at Rutgers University, later teaching at the University of Houston. He became assistant dean of Texas A&M University in 1980 and the dean at Florida Atlantic University in 1983.

The SVEC Annual Engineers Week Dinner and Hall of Fame Awards will take place Thursday, Feb. 24 from 5¿9:30 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel in San Jose.

About Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University is a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California¿s Silicon Valley. Santa Clara offers its more than 8,800 students rigorous undergraduate programs in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master¿s degrees in a number of professional fields, law degrees, and engineering and theology doctorates. Distinguished by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master¿s universities, Santa Clara educates leaders of competence, conscience, and compassion grounded in faith-inspired values. Founded in 1851, Santa Clara is California¿s oldest operating institution of higher education. For more information, see www.scu.edu.

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Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame | View Clip
02/07/2011
About.com

The Silicon Valley Engineering Council (SVEC) will induct Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup into the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame on Feb. 24. The Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of engineers, technical leaders, and scientists in the Silicon Valley region who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and have made significant contributions to the Silicon Valley community and the Greater Bay Area communities.

Shoup has written more than 100 technical papers on mechanical design and applied mechanisms, and is the co-author of the book Design of Machine Elements. He has received numerous honors, including the Distinguished Service Award of the International Federation for the Theory of Machines and Mechanisms in 2007, the Rodney D. Chipp Memorial Award of the Society of Women Engineers in 2002, and the Distinguished Service Award from the ASME Council on Education in 1988.

Shoup has been at SCU since 1989, where he currently teaches mechanical engineering and is also the interim executive director for international programs. He served as the School of Engineering dean for 13 years, overseeing six academic departments, 40 full-time faculty, 600 undergraduate students, and 800 graduate students. During his time as dean, Shoup established a merit scholarship program that helped to raise the average SAT score for the engineering freshman class by 125 points. He also inaugurated a group of five programs to serve underrepresented high school students and to encourage them to undertake college study/engineering careers. In the past 10 years, more than 1,200 students have benefited from these programs. Shoup also created the nation's first “degree warranty” program whereby SCU engineering graduates can return to campus and take graduate courses tuition-free if they are ever laid off from their jobs.

Shoup started his academic career at Ohio State University, where he received his bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering. In 1969, he became an assistant professor at Rutgers University, later teaching at the University of Houston. He became assistant dean of Texas A&M University in 1980 and the dean at Florida Atlantic University in 1983.

The SVEC Annual Engineers Week Dinner and Hall of Fame Awards will take place Thursday, Feb. 24 from 5–9:30 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel in San Jose. About is a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California's Silicon Valley. Santa Clara offers its more than 8,800 students rigorous undergraduate programs in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master's degrees in a number of professional fields, law degrees, and engineering and theology doctorates. Distinguished by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master's universities, Santa Clara educates leaders of competence, conscience, and compassion grounded in faith-inspired values. Founded in 1851, Santa Clara is California's oldest operating institution of higher education. For more information, see www.scu.edu.

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Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame | View Clip
02/07/2011
SocialPicks

The Silicon Valley Engineering Council (SVEC) will induct Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup into the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame on Feb. 24.

The Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of engineers, technical leaders, and scientists in the Silicon Valley region who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and have made significant contributions to the Silicon Valley community and the Greater Bay Area communities.

Shoup has written more than 100 technical papers on mechanical design and applied mechanisms, and is the co-author of the book Design of Machine Elements. He has received numerous honors, including the Distinguished Service Award of the International Federation for the Theory of Machines and Mechanisms in 2007, the Rodney D. Chipp Memorial Award of the Society of Women Engineers in 2002, and the Distinguished Service Award from the ASME Council on Education in 1988.

Shoup has been at SCU since 1989, where he currently teaches mechanical engineering and is also the interim executive director for international programs. He served as the School of Engineering dean for 13 years, overseeing six academic departments, 40 full-time faculty, 600 undergraduate students, and 800 graduate students. During his time as dean, Shoup established a merit scholarship program that helped to raise the average SAT score for the engineering freshman class by 125 points. He also inaugurated a group of five programs to serve underrepresented high school students and to encourage them to undertake college study/engineering careers. In the past 10 years, more than 1,200 students have benefited from these programs. Shoup also created the nation's first “degree warranty” program whereby SCU engineering graduates can return to campus and take graduate courses tuition-free if they are ever laid off from their jobs.

Shoup started his academic career at Ohio State University, where he received his bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering. In 1969, he became an assistant professor at Rutgers University, later teaching at the University of Houston. He became assistant dean of Texas A&M University in 1980 and the dean at Florida Atlantic University in 1983.

The SVEC Annual Engineers Week Dinner and Hall of Fame Awards will take place Thursday, Feb. 24 from 5–9:30 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel in San Jose.

About Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University is a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California's Silicon Valley. Santa Clara offers its more than 8,800 students rigorous undergraduate programs in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master's degrees in a number of professional fields, law degrees, and engineering and theology doctorates. Distinguished by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master's universities, Santa Clara educates leaders of competence, conscience, and compassion grounded in faith-inspired values. Founded in 1851, Santa Clara is California's oldest operating institution of higher education. For more information, see www.scu.edu.

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Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame | View Clip
02/07/2011
San Francisco Chronicle - Online

The Silicon Valley Engineering Council (SVEC) will induct Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup into the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame on Feb. 24.

The Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of engineers, technical leaders, and scientists in the Silicon Valley region who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and have made significant contributions to the Silicon Valley community and the Greater Bay Area communities.

Shoup has written more than 100 technical papers on mechanical design and applied mechanisms, and is the co-author of the book Design of Machine Elements. He has received numerous honors, including the Distinguished Service Award of the International Federation for the Theory of Machines and Mechanisms in 2007, the Rodney D. Chipp Memorial Award of the Society of Women Engineers in 2002, and the Distinguished Service Award from the ASME Council on Education in 1988.

Shoup has been at SCU since 1989, where he currently teaches mechanical engineering and is also the interim executive director for international programs. He served as the School of Engineering dean for 13 years, overseeing six academic departments, 40 full-time faculty, 600 undergraduate students, and 800 graduate students. During his time as dean, Shoup established a merit scholarship program that helped to raise the average SAT score for the engineering freshman class by 125 points. He also inaugurated a group of five programs to serve underrepresented high school students and to encourage them to undertake college study/engineering careers. In the past 10 years, more than 1,200 students have benefited from these programs. Shoup also created the nation's first “degree warranty” program whereby SCU engineering graduates can return to campus and take graduate courses tuition-free if they are ever laid off from their jobs.

Shoup started his academic career at Ohio State University, where he received his bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering. In 1969, he became an assistant professor at Rutgers University, later teaching at the University of Houston. He became assistant dean of Texas A&M University in 1980 and the dean at Florida Atlantic University in 1983.

The SVEC Annual Engineers Week Dinner and Hall of Fame Awards will take place Thursday, Feb. 24 from 5–9:30 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel in San Jose.

About Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University is a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California's Silicon Valley. Santa Clara offers its more than 8,800 students rigorous undergraduate programs in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master's degrees in a number of professional fields, law degrees, and engineering and theology doctorates. Distinguished by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master's universities, Santa Clara educates leaders of competence, conscience, and compassion grounded in faith-inspired values. Founded in 1851, Santa Clara is California's oldest operating institution of higher education. For more information, see www.scu.edu.

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Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame | View Clip
02/07/2011
Herald - Online, The

SANTA CLARA, Calif. --

The Silicon Valley Engineering Council (SVEC) will induct Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup into the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame on Feb. 24.

The Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of engineers, technical leaders, and scientists in the Silicon Valley region who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and have made significant contributions to the Silicon Valley community and the Greater Bay Area communities.

Shoup has written more than 100 technical papers on mechanical design and applied mechanisms, and is the co-author of the book Design of Machine Elements. He has received numerous honors, including the Distinguished Service Award of the International Federation for the Theory of Machines and Mechanisms in 2007, the Rodney D. Chipp Memorial Award of the Society of Women Engineers in 2002, and the Distinguished Service Award from the ASME Council on Education in 1988.

Shoup has been at SCU since 1989, where he currently teaches mechanical engineering and is also the interim executive director for international programs. He served as the School of Engineering dean for 13 years, overseeing six academic departments, 40 full-time faculty, 600 undergraduate students, and 800 graduate students. During his time as dean, Shoup established a merit scholarship program that helped to raise the average SAT score for the engineering freshman class by 125 points. He also inaugurated a group of five programs to serve underrepresented high school students and to encourage them to undertake college study/engineering careers. In the past 10 years, more than 1,200 students have benefited from these programs. Shoup also created the nation's first “degree warranty” program whereby SCU engineering graduates can return to campus and take graduate courses tuition-free if they are ever laid off from their jobs.

Shoup started his academic career at Ohio State University, where he received his bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering. In 1969, he became an assistant professor at Rutgers University, later teaching at the University of Houston. He became assistant dean of Texas A&M University in 1980 and the dean at Florida Atlantic University in 1983.

The SVEC Annual Engineers Week Dinner and Hall of Fame Awards will take place Thursday, Feb. 24 from 5–9:30 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel in San Jose.

About Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University is a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California's Silicon Valley. Santa Clara offers its more than 8,800 students rigorous undergraduate programs in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master's degrees in a number of professional fields, law degrees, and engineering and theology doctorates. Distinguished by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master's universities, Santa Clara educates leaders of competence, conscience, and compassion grounded in faith-inspired values. Founded in 1851, Santa Clara is California's oldest operating institution of higher education. For more information, see www.scu.edu.

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Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame | View Clip
02/07/2011
Yahoo! Finance

SANTA CLARA, Calif. The Silicon Valley Engineering Council (SVEC) will induct Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup into the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame on Feb. 24. The Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of engineers, technical leaders, and scientists in the Silicon Valley region who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and have made significant contributions to the Silicon Valley community and the Greater Bay Area communities.

Shoup has written more than 100 technical papers on mechanical design and applied mechanisms, and is the co-author of the book Design of Machine Elements. He has received numerous honors, including the Distinguished Service Award of the International Federation for the Theory of Machines and Mechanisms in 2007, the Rodney D. Chipp Memorial Award of the Society of Women Engineers in 2002, and the Distinguished Service Award from the ASME Council on Education in 1988.

Shoup has been at SCU since 1989, where he currently teaches mechanical engineering and is also the interim executive director for international programs. He served as the School of Engineering dean for 13 years, overseeing six academic departments, 40 full-time faculty, 600 undergraduate students, and 800 graduate students. During his time as dean, Shoup established a merit scholarship program that helped to raise the average SAT score for the engineering freshman class by 125 points. He also inaugurated a group of five programs to serve underrepresented high school students and to encourage them to undertake college study/engineering careers. In the past 10 years, more than 1,200 students have benefited from these programs. Shoup also created the nation's first “degree warranty” program whereby SCU engineering graduates can return to campus and take graduate courses tuition-free if they are ever laid off from their jobs.

Shoup started his academic career at Ohio State University, where he received his bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering. In 1969, he became an assistant professor at Rutgers University, later teaching at the University of Houston. He became assistant dean of Texas A&M University in 1980 and the dean at Florida Atlantic University in 1983.

The SVEC Annual Engineers Week Dinner and Hall of Fame Awards will take place Thursday, Feb. 24 from 5–9:30 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel in San Jose.

About Santa Clara University Santa Clara University is a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California's Silicon Valley. Santa Clara offers its more than 8,800 students rigorous undergraduate programs in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master's degrees in a number of professional fields, law degrees, and engineering and theology doctorates. Distinguished by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master's universities, Santa Clara educates leaders of competence, conscience, and compassion grounded in faith-inspired values. Founded in 1851, Santa Clara is California's oldest operating institution of higher education. For more information, see www.scu.edu.

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Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame | View Clip
02/07/2011
Yahoo! News

SANTA CLARA, Calif. The Silicon Valley Engineering Council (SVEC) will induct Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup into the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame on Feb. 24. The Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of engineers, technical leaders, and scientists in the Silicon Valley region who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and have made significant contributions to the Silicon Valley community and the Greater Bay Area communities.

Shoup has written more than 100 technical papers on mechanical design and applied mechanisms, and is the co-author of the book Design of Machine Elements. He has received numerous honors, including the Distinguished Service Award of the International Federation for the Theory of Machines and Mechanisms in 2007, the Rodney D. Chipp Memorial Award of the Society of Women Engineers in 2002, and the Distinguished Service Award from the ASME Council on Education in 1988.

Shoup has been at SCU since 1989, where he currently teaches mechanical engineering and is also the interim executive director for international programs. He served as the School of Engineering dean for 13 years, overseeing six academic departments, 40 full-time faculty, 600 undergraduate students, and 800 graduate students. During his time as dean, Shoup established a merit scholarship program that helped to raise the average SAT score for the engineering freshman class by 125 points. He also inaugurated a group of five programs to serve underrepresented high school students and to encourage them to undertake college study/engineering careers. In the past 10 years, more than 1,200 students have benefited from these programs. Shoup also created the nation's first “degree warranty” program whereby SCU engineering graduates can return to campus and take graduate courses tuition-free if they are ever laid off from their jobs.

Shoup started his academic career at Ohio State University, where he received his bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering. In 1969, he became an assistant professor at Rutgers University, later teaching at the University of Houston. He became assistant dean of Texas A&M University in 1980 and the dean at Florida Atlantic University in 1983.

The SVEC Annual Engineers Week Dinner and Hall of Fame Awards will take place Thursday, Feb. 24 from 5–9:30 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel in San Jose.

About Santa Clara University Santa Clara University is a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California's Silicon Valley. Santa Clara offers its more than 8,800 students rigorous undergraduate programs in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master's degrees in a number of professional fields, law degrees, and engineering and theology doctorates. Distinguished by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master's universities, Santa Clara educates leaders of competence, conscience, and compassion grounded in faith-inspired values. Founded in 1851, Santa Clara is California's oldest operating institution of higher education. For more information, see www.scu.edu.

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Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup to Be Inducted into Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame | View Clip
02/07/2011
Centre Daily Times - Online

SANTA CLARA, Calif. The Silicon Valley Engineering Council (SVEC) will induct Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Professor Terry Shoup into the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame on Feb. 24. The Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of engineers, technical leaders, and scientists in the Silicon Valley region who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and have made significant contributions to the Silicon Valley community and the Greater Bay Area communities.

Shoup has written more than 100 technical papers on mechanical design and applied mechanisms, and is the co-author of the book Design of Machine Elements. He has received numerous honors, including the Distinguished Service Award of the International Federation for the Theory of Machines and Mechanisms in 2007, the Rodney D. Chipp Memorial Award of the Society of Women Engineers in 2002, and the Distinguished Service Award from the ASME Council on Education in 1988.

Shoup has been at SCU since 1989, where he currently teaches mechanical engineering and is also the interim executive director for international programs. He served as the School of Engineering dean for 13 years, overseeing six academic departments, 40 full-time faculty, 600 undergraduate students, and 800 graduate students. During his time as dean, Shoup established a merit scholarship program that helped to raise the average SAT score for the engineering freshman class by 125 points. He also inaugurated a group of five programs to serve underrepresented high school students and to encourage them to undertake college study/engineering careers. In the past 10 years, more than 1,200 students have benefited from these programs. Shoup also created the nation?s first ?degree warranty? program whereby SCU engineering graduates can return to campus and take graduate courses tuition-free if they are ever laid off from their jobs.

Shoup started his academic career at Ohio State University, where he received his bachelor?s, master?s, and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering. In 1969, he became an assistant professor at Rutgers University, later teaching at the University of Houston. He became assistant dean of Texas A&M University in 1980 and the dean at Florida Atlantic University in 1983.

The SVEC Annual Engineers Week Dinner and Hall of Fame Awards will take place Thursday, Feb. 24 from 5?9:30 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel in San Jose.

About Santa Clara UniversitySanta Clara University is a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California?s Silicon Valley. Santa Clara offers its more than 8,800 students rigorous undergraduate programs in arts and sciences, business, and engineering, plus master?s degrees in a number of professional fields, law degrees, and engineering and theology doctorates. Distinguished by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master?s universities, Santa Clara educates leaders of competence, conscience, and compassion grounded in faith-inspired values. Founded in 1851, Santa Clara is California?s oldest operating institution of higher education. For more information, see www.scu.edu.

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Merced native the 'Big Bang' winner | View Clip
02/07/2011
AllVoices

Many of the people who entered The Big Bang Theory's "Soft Kitty" video contest filmed themselves singing or playing instruments...The 23-year-old Merced native, an engineering graduate student at Santa Clara University, had no trouble whipping up equations and building a small robot for her entry....

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Merced native the 'Big Bang' winner | View Clip
02/07/2011
Sacramento Bee - Online, The

Many of the people who entered The Big Bang Theory's "Soft Kitty" video contest filmed themselves singing or playing instruments.

Anne Mahacek built a robot.

The 23-year-old Merced native, an engineering graduate student at Santa Clara University, had no trouble whipping up equations and building a small robot for her entry.

Mahacek found out Friday morning that she won the CBS sitcom's contest, which asked participants to film their performances of the lullaby "Soft Kitty," featured prominently on the program.

"My Facebook page, e-mail box and phone were all full of people congratulating me. I had a whole lot of support," she said.

Mahacek's video entry featured a robot, built of Legos and items she had lying around the house, moving to each line of the song as a robotic voice recited the lyrics. She got the idea from an episode in which a female character sings the song to a robot.

"I knew my entry was extremely nerdy," she said, and was uncertain it had mass appeal. "I was never sure, even after it was announced that I won."

For her effort, she'll get a three-day trip to Southern California to see a taping of the show.

She's a big fan of the show's geek-themed humor, but says its portrayal of engineering students is a stereotype.

"It's basically a nerdy version of 'Friends,' " she said.

Unlike the show's sometimes antisocial characters, Mahacek had a supportive social network backing her up. She enlisted her friends and family to help her gather votes for the contest. The public vote counted for 40 percent of the final tally. The votes of a CBS panel of judges constituted the remaining 60 percent.

Mahacek is a 2005 graduate of Merced High and was part of UC Merced's first full graduating class.

She found it easy to translate the simple song into the language of engineers.

For the first line, "Soft Kitty," she used a density equation that shows volume larger than mass. For the line "Warm Kitty," she used a basic heat-transfer equation, and for the refrain "Little ball of fur," she used equations used for graphing a sphere.

The last line of the song is "purr, purr, purr." Her version? "Purr3."

Online editor Brandon Bowers can be reached at (209) 385-2464 or bbowers@mercedsun-star.com.

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Merced native the 'Big Bang' winner
02/07/2011
Merced Sun-Star

Many of the people who entered The Big Bang Theory's "Soft Kitty" video contest filmed themselves singing or playing instruments.

Anne Mahacek built a robot.

The 23-year-old Merced native, an engineering graduate student at Santa Clara University , had no trouble whipping up equations and building a small robot for her entry.

Mahacek found out Friday morning that she won the CBS sitcom's contest, which asked participants to film their performances of the lullaby "Soft Kitty," featured prominently on the program.

"My Facebook page, e-mail box and phone were all full of people congratulating me. I had a whole lot of support," she said.

Mahacek's video entry featured a robot, built of Legos and items she had lying around the house, moving to each line of the song as a robotic voice recited the lyrics. She got the idea from an episode in which a female character sings the song to a robot.

"I knew my entry was extremely nerdy," she said, and was uncertain it had mass appeal. "I was never sure, even after it was announced that I won."

For her effort, she'll get a three-day trip to Southern California to see a taping of the show.

She's a big fan of the show's geek-themed humor, but says its portrayal of engineering students is a stereotype.

"It's basically a nerdy version of 'Friends,' " she said.

Unlike the show's sometimes antisocial characters, Mahacek had a supportive social network backing her up. She enlisted her friends and family to help her gather votes for the contest. The public vote counted for 40 percent of the final tally. The votes of a CBS panel of judges constituted the remaining 60 percent.

Mahacek is a 2005 graduate of Merced High and was part of UC Merced's first full graduating class.

She found it easy to translate the simple song into the language of engineers.

For the first line, "Soft Kitty," she used a density equation that shows volume larger than mass. For the line "Warm Kitty," she used a basic heat-transfer equation, and for the refrain "Little ball of fur," she used equations used for graphing a sphere.

The last line of the song is "purr, purr, purr." Her version? "Purr3."

Online editor Brandon Bowers can be reached at (209) 385-2464 or .

Copyright © 2011 McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

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Culture shock? Proud East Coaster now a West Coast college student | View Clip
02/07/2011
Washington Post - Online

A few weeks ago, midwesterner Valerie Roder told us about adjusting to college life in the Big Apple. Today's guest blogger is Brianne Jones, a New Jersey native who is now a freshman at Santa Clara University.

For the next four years, I will be living more than 3,000 miles away from home. So why did someone from Moorestown, N.J., enroll at Santa Clara University?

I knew since I toured colleges on the West Coast in my freshman year in high school that I wanted to go to school here. I always had a vision of myself studying outside in the middle of the winter, soaking in the sun, going to outdoor concerts in the fall and winter, wearing flip-flops until December and going for runs outside all year round. Such things may be trivial, but they all add up.

I was also ready to put behind me winter lacrosse practices, which make you turn into an icicle. But the main reason I felt the West Coast was a good decision for me was I thought that by exposing myself to a new coast, new people and perhaps a whole new lifestyle, I could become more independent. It felt like a perfect fit for my personality and aspirations.

Only three of the 400 kids in my graduating high school class took advantage of the opportunity to go to college in California. I think parents set boundaries and some kids worry that they won't be able to get home quickly -- or that they'll get sick, miss their siblings or run out of money.

If you're thinking about going to school on the West Coast, narrow your list by size and fit and then visit a few colleges. Sit in on a class, spend a night with a student, eat at the cafeteria and go to the bookstore.

Then, if you decide on a West Coast school, the adjustment isn't that hard. Once you get into the college schedule and start loving college live, your school becomes your own little bubble. For some strange reason, this bubble doesn't make distance seem all that great.

And adjusting to the distance from family and friends is easier with Skype, Facebook and texting. The minute you get homesick you can simply log onto Skype and see your parents and your pets! But you'll be so busy, you won't have time to be homesick. Time flies in college, and the minute you get adjusted you are back home for Thanksgiving and winter breaks, not to mention spring and summer breaks.

Going to school across the country is no doubt very expensive. The biggest expenses are travel and shipping costs. Buy airline tickets early to save money. Pack carefully so you don't have to have things shipped later.

There really aren't that many other extra expenses, but there are differences East Coast students have to adjust to:

* Out west, you'll get amazing Mexican food, but forget about finding a good bagel.

* The traffic in New Jersey is bad, but the traffic in California is absurd. It's one big road race out here.

* You have to pump your own gas; in New Jersey I never have to get out of the car.

* The West Coast has more diverse fast food options, like Weinershnietzal, Del Taco, Carl's Jr., In-N-Out, Jack-In-The-Box and Fatburger.

* California's sales tax is out of control at 9.5 percent.

* You can go to outdoor concerts on the West Coast all year round.

Campus Overload is a daily must-read for all college students. Make sure to bookmark http://washingtonpost.com/campus-overload. You can also follow me on Twitter and fan Campus Overload on

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Merced native the 'Big Bang' winner | View Clip
02/07/2011
Modesto Bee - Online, The

Grad student's robot entry takes top prize in CBS sitcom's contest.

Many of the people who entered The Big Bang Theory's "Soft Kitty" video contest filmed themselves singing or playing instruments.

Anne Mahacek built a robot.

The 23-year-old Merced native, an engineering graduate student at Santa Clara University, had no trouble whipping up equations and building a small robot for her entry.

Mahacek found out Friday morning that she won the CBS sitcom's contest, which asked participants to film their performances of the lullaby "Soft Kitty," featured prominently on the program.

"My Facebook page, e-mail box and phone were all full of people congratulating me. I had a whole lot of support," she said.

Mahacek's video entry featured a robot, built of Legos and items she had lying around the house, moving to each line of the song as a robotic voice recited the lyrics. She got the idea from an episode in which a female character sings the song to a robot.

"I knew my entry was extremely nerdy," she said, and was uncertain it had mass appeal. "I was never sure, even after it was announced that I won."

For her effort, she'll get a three-day trip to Southern California to see a taping of the show.

She's a big fan of the show's geek-themed humor, but says its portrayal of engineering students is a stereotype.

"It's basically a nerdy version of 'Friends,' " she said.

Unlike the show's sometimes antisocial characters, Mahacek had a supportive social network backing her up. She enlisted her friends and family to help her gather votes for the contest. The public vote counted for 40 percent of the final tally. The votes of a CBS panel of judges constituted the remaining 60 percent.

Mahacek is a 2005 graduate of Merced High and was part of UC Merced's first full graduating class.

She found it easy to translate the simple song into the language of engineers.

For the first line, "Soft Kitty," she used a density equation that shows volume larger than mass. For the line "Warm Kitty," she used a basic heat-transfer equation, and for the refrain "Little ball of fur," she used equations used for graphing a sphere.

The last line of the song is "purr, purr, purr." Her version? "Purr3."

Online editor Brandon Bowers can be reached at (209) 385-2464 or bbowers@mercedsun-star.com.

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Merced native the 'Big Bang' winner | View Clip
02/07/2011
Merced Sun-Star - Online

Grad student's robot entry takes top prize in CBS sitcom's contest.

Many of the people who entered The Big Bang Theory's "Soft Kitty" video contest filmed themselves singing or playing instruments.

Anne Mahacek built a robot.

The 23-year-old Merced native, an engineering graduate student at Santa Clara University, had no trouble whipping up equations and building a small robot for her entry.

Mahacek found out Friday morning that she won the CBS sitcom's contest, which asked participants to film their performances of the lullaby "Soft Kitty," featured prominently on the program.

"My Facebook page, e-mail box and phone were all full of people congratulating me. I had a whole lot of support," she said.

Mahacek's video entry featured a robot, built of Legos and items she had lying around the house, moving to each line of the song as a robotic voice recited the lyrics. She got the idea from an episode in which a female character sings the song to a robot.

"I knew my entry was extremely nerdy," she said, and was uncertain it had mass appeal. "I was never sure, even after it was announced that I won."

For her effort, she'll get a three-day trip to Southern California to see a taping of the show.

She's a big fan of the show's geek-themed humor, but says its portrayal of engineering students is a stereotype.

"It's basically a nerdy version of 'Friends,' " she said.

Unlike the show's sometimes antisocial characters, Mahacek had a supportive social network backing her up. She enlisted her friends and family to help her gather votes for the contest. The public vote counted for 40 percent of the final tally. The votes of a CBS panel of judges constituted the remaining 60 percent.

Mahacek is a 2005 graduate of Merced High and was part of UC Merced's first full graduating class.

She found it easy to translate the simple song into the language of engineers.

For the first line, "Soft Kitty," she used a density equation that shows volume larger than mass. For the line "Warm Kitty," she used a basic heat-transfer equation, and for the refrain "Little ball of fur," she used equations used for graphing a sphere.

The last line of the song is "purr, purr, purr." Her version? "Purr3."

Online editor Brandon Bowers can be reached at (209) 385-2464 or bbowers@mercedsun-star.com.

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Merced native the 'Big Bang' winner [Merced Sun-Star, Calif.] | View Clip
02/07/2011
Evergreen Investments

Feb. 07--Many of the people who entered The Big Bang Theory's "Soft Kitty" video contest filmed themselves singing or playing instruments.

Anne Mahacek built a robot.

The 23-year-old Merced native, an engineering graduate student at Santa Clara University, had no trouble whipping up equations and building a small robot for her entry.

Mahacek found out Friday morning that she won the CBS sitcom's contest, which asked participants to film their performances of the lullaby "Soft Kitty," featured prominently on the program.

"My Facebook page, e-mail box and phone were all full of people congratulating me. I had a whole lot of support," she said.

Mahacek's video entry featured a robot, built of Legos and items she had lying around the house, moving to each line of the song as a robotic voice recited the lyrics. She got the idea from an episode in which a female character sings the song to a robot.

"I knew my entry was extremely nerdy," she said, and was uncertain it had mass appeal. "I was never sure, even after it was announced that I won."

For her effort, she'll get a three-day trip to Southern California to see a taping of the show.

She's a big fan of the show's geek-themed humor, but says its portrayal of engineering students is a stereotype.

"It's basically a nerdy version of 'Friends,' " she said.

Unlike the show's sometimes antisocial characters, Mahacek had a supportive social network backing her up. She enlisted her friends and family to help her gather votes for the contest. The public vote counted for 40 percent of the final tally. The votes of a CBS panel of judges constituted the remaining 60 percent.

Mahacek is a 2005 graduate of Merced High and was part of UC Merced's first full graduating class.

She found it easy to translate the simple song into the language of engineers.

For the first line, "Soft Kitty," she used a density equation that shows volume larger than mass. For the line "Warm Kitty," she used a basic heat-transfer equation, and for the refrain "Little ball of fur," she used equations used for graphing a sphere.

The last line of the song is "purr, purr, purr." Her version? "Purr^3."

Online editor Brandon Bowers can be reached at (209) 385-2464 or bbowers@mercedsun-star.com.

To see more of the Merced Sun-Star or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.mercedsunstar.com.

Copyright (c) 2011, Merced Sun-Star, Calif.

Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

For more information about the content services offered by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services (MCT), visit www.mctinfoservices.com, e-mail services@mctinfoservices.com, or call 866-280-5210 (outside the United States, call +1 312-222-4544)

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Targeting the next crime | View Clip
02/07/2011
Province - Online, The

MINNEAPOLIS — Ryan Hughes, a young, spiky-haired computer analyst for the Minneapolis Police Department, pulls up a map of the Twin Cities on his screen.

"Here, here, here," he begins, pointing to six red dots. Each marks a robbery probably committed by the same man.

"And here," Hughes continues, pointing to a dot just northeast of Minneapolis, "is where I predicted he would go next."

Simple as a crime map, seemingly as far-fetched as ESP, such scenes are becoming more common. Police departments from Minneapolis to Los Angeles are turning to the emerging science of using recent crime data to predict where criminals will strike next.

The potentially revolutionary step could fundamentally alter the nature of police work.

The idea is that everyone, even criminals, are creatures of habit. With enough information about past crimes, it's possible to forecast their future target.

"We usually look at the last week and say, 'This is what happened in the last week,' " said Minneapolis Chief Tim Dolan. "Well we've added to that, saying, 'This is what we think's going to happen next week.' "

That kind of thinking has just begun in Minneapolis, but Dolan says it's already paid off in north and southwest Minneapolis, areas that led the city last year in reducing overall crime rates.

The strategy looks slightly different everywhere it's used, but predictive policing relies mainly on a police department's ability to accumulate deep databases of crime information that detail time, location, methods and numerous other bits of revealing data. Crunched by a computer analyst, the numbers reveal patterns.

That's the task facing a crew of five such crime analysts who work out of a second floor office in City Hall. Every day, they pore over recent crime data, slicing it different ways and sometimes using software to crunch it further. If a pattern emerges, they mark it down for consideration on an internal crime map that gets passed along to the chief for his weekly meeting with top inspectors and lieutenants.

A handful of police departments around the country have spent tens of thousands of dollars on more advanced software, or are working with university researchers and technology companies on algorithms to help them spot crime trends. It's akin to predicting where an earthquake's aftershocks will be felt, says a Santa Clara University mathematician developing formulas for such police work.

As for Hughes' prediction of where the Minneapolis robber would strike next? It was made using free software distributed by the National Institute of Justice. The software examines the location and timing of each crime to draw its conclusions. The estimate of the robber's next target turned out to be a mile off. But in the world of crime prediction, that's still counted as a success _ the kind of information that could put a patrol car close to the action.

Hughes, who hopes the Minneapolis department will eventually use more high-powered software for predictive policing, said that his maps have accurately predicted the locations of 45 per cent of the city's violent crime.

"I have a better batting average than Joe Mauer," Hughes said.

To better understand predictive policing, consider the Pop-Tarts story.

Businesses such as Wal-Mart have long anticipated customers' needs based on weather and time of year. Coastal stores knew that as hurricanes approached, customers stocked up on bottled water and duct tape. Those things made sense, but looking more closely at customer data and comparing it to weather patterns, analysts at Wal-Mart noticed that customers anticipating a hurricane also bought more strawberry Pop-Tarts.

It's the sort of anecdote that the emerging industry of predictive policing embraces because it shows how analyzing data can turn up surprises, things that can be used to predict future behavior.

The promise of doing the same thing with crime has prompted some large police departments such as Los Angeles to invest in partnerships with university researchers to devise predictive algorithms or formulas. As exotic as it sounds, it's just the next step in the changing world of police work, said William Bratton, the celebrated former chief of police in Los Angeles and New York City.

"It's really the continuation of the evolution of policing," Bratton said.

Starting in the 1990s, when police began using crime reports to identify hot spots, the focus has been on putting police officers near high-crime areas. Putting laptops in squad cars and publishing crime maps helped shorten response time. Now, police departments can quickly analyze a lot of crime data to spot crime trends as they're occurring.

"So after two or three incidents we can put a stop to it instead of waiting for 20 or 30," said Bratton, who now works as an independent security consultant.

"This is potentially labor-saving," he said. "That's very important because as we're going into very tough times with public financing, it's going to become more and more critical."

The hope is that predictive policing will help supplant random patrolling, which studies have shown doesn't work well.

"It's not enough to send people out and expect that they will have an impact on crime," said Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum in Washington.

Minneapolis police estimate that half of the city's most serious crime takes place on 6 per cent of its land area. Many of the worst areas are under video surveillance, as the city expands its use of closed circuit cameras. But even within those high crime areas, there might be a few blocks that are particularly rough on any given week, said Sgt. Jeff Egge, the head of the department's Crime Analysis Unit.

His staff of five analysts make predictions by printing color-coded maps that show blocks or small sectors where they expect crimes such as burglary, robbery and aggravated assaults. The techniques are less effective for "episodic" crimes such as homicide, which are more random.

The strategy adds a predictive element to the department's CODEFOR program, begun in 1998 to map the city's crime hot spots.

"When we started CODEFOR, we looked at where crime occurred last week," said Deputy Chief Rob Allen. "What we've asked people to do is to focus more on where we anticipate crime is going to occur next week. We've made it sort of future-oriented rather than assuming the same patterns will continue."

It's had its successes, police say.

Last October, two felons walked into the Dunn Brothers coffee shop in Uptown, pistol-whipped one of the two clerks, tied them up in a back room and took a bag of cash.

Witnesses called 911. Police arrived in time to catch the robbers. The two now face federal charges due to their criminal histories.

Fifth Precinct Inspector Ed Frizell said it was no coincidence that officers arrived so quickly. Fifth Precinct officers were looking out for storefront robberies along Lake Street as part of the precinct's predictive analysis.

"The officers of the Fifth Precinct have absolutely made this thing work," Frizell said. "They have total buy-in."

Frizell said he knows the color-coded maps issued by the Crime Analysis Unit are taken seriously by his patrol officers because he sees them taking notes off of fresh maps hung in the precinct.

It's easier than handing an officer a stack of the latest intelligence, said Lt. Jeff Rugel, who runs the Gang Enforcement Team out of the department's new strategic information center. "A commander issuing orders can say, 'See where it's red? Go be where it's red,' " Rugel said. "It makes it very easy to see what's going on as opposed to charts and charts of data."

It can be tough to gauge the success of predictive policing because analysts don't know whether added police presence at predicted hot spots deters the predicted crime.

"You can't measure things that don't happen," said Capt. Amelia Huffman, commander of the criminal investigations division.

If a prediction helps police catch someone doing a lot of crimes, the effect on local crime rates can be remarkable. For example, said Huffman, if a prolific burglar is captured, burglary dots on the weekly crime maps will "melt away."

Sometimes, predictive policing looks a lot more like common sense than science fiction, said Egge, who gave the example of how his unit analyzed years of data on burglaries that occurred each year during the week the University of Minnesota started classes.

Laptops, GPS units, iPods and other expensive items are often left in cars or hallways as students unpack, and many are stolen.

This past fall, crime analysts Hughes and Susan McPhee came up with maps of the Dinkytown area that highlighted the spots that historically have the most crime during opening week. Then crime prevention specialists warned students in that area to use caution while officers kept an eye on the worst spots. Crimes were down sharply, police said.

In December, Chief Dolan spoke at the grand opening of a police intelligence center where a few officers can monitor hundreds of live video feeds from across the city on three movie screens. They just have to know where to look.

Dolan said predictive policing has just begun in Minneapolis and will grow as the department becomes more accustomed to it. In the end, he said, it's just one more tool to put police where they should be.

"The most efficient thing we can do is prevent a crime," Dolan said. "Solving a crime is all good once a crime's occurred. It is much more efficient to be trying to prevent crime for a community."

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Targeting the next crime | View Clip
02/07/2011
Windsor Star - Online, The

By Matt McKinney, Star Tribune

Sgt. Jeff Egge runs the Crime Analysis Unit. Using crime data and software, his team is able to point out hotspots where crime is likely to occur.

Photograph by: Richard Tsong-Taatarii, Minneapolis Star Tribune/MCT

MINNEAPOLIS — Ryan Hughes, a young, spiky-haired computer analyst for the Minneapolis Police Department, pulls up a map of the Twin Cities on his screen.

"Here, here, here," he begins, pointing to six red dots. Each marks a robbery probably committed by the same man.

"And here," Hughes continues, pointing to a dot just northeast of Minneapolis, "is where I predicted he would go next."

Simple as a crime map, seemingly as far-fetched as ESP, such scenes are becoming more common. Police departments from Minneapolis to Los Angeles are turning to the emerging science of using recent crime data to predict where criminals will strike next.

The potentially revolutionary step could fundamentally alter the nature of police work.

The idea is that everyone, even criminals, are creatures of habit. With enough information about past crimes, it's possible to forecast their future target.

"We usually look at the last week and say, 'This is what happened in the last week,' " said Minneapolis Chief Tim Dolan. "Well we've added to that, saying, 'This is what we think's going to happen next week.' "

That kind of thinking has just begun in Minneapolis, but Dolan says it's already paid off in north and southwest Minneapolis, areas that led the city last year in reducing overall crime rates.

The strategy looks slightly different everywhere it's used, but predictive policing relies mainly on a police department's ability to accumulate deep databases of crime information that detail time, location, methods and numerous other bits of revealing data. Crunched by a computer analyst, the numbers reveal patterns.

That's the task facing a crew of five such crime analysts who work out of a second floor office in City Hall. Every day, they pore over recent crime data, slicing it different ways and sometimes using software to crunch it further. If a pattern emerges, they mark it down for consideration on an internal crime map that gets passed along to the chief for his weekly meeting with top inspectors and lieutenants.

A handful of police departments around the country have spent tens of thousands of dollars on more advanced software, or are working with university researchers and technology companies on algorithms to help them spot crime trends. It's akin to predicting where an earthquake's aftershocks will be felt, says a Santa Clara University mathematician developing formulas for such police work.

As for Hughes' prediction of where the Minneapolis robber would strike next? It was made using free software distributed by the National Institute of Justice. The software examines the location and timing of each crime to draw its conclusions. The estimate of the robber's next target turned out to be a mile off. But in the world of crime prediction, that's still counted as a success _ the kind of information that could put a patrol car close to the action.

Hughes, who hopes the Minneapolis department will eventually use more high-powered software for predictive policing, said that his maps have accurately predicted the locations of 45 per cent of the city's violent crime.

"I have a better batting average than Joe Mauer," Hughes said.

To better understand predictive policing, consider the Pop-Tarts story.

Businesses such as Wal-Mart have long anticipated customers' needs based on weather and time of year. Coastal stores knew that as hurricanes approached, customers stocked up on bottled water and duct tape. Those things made sense, but looking more closely at customer data and comparing it to weather patterns, analysts at Wal-Mart noticed that customers anticipating a hurricane also bought more strawberry Pop-Tarts.

It's the sort of anecdote that the emerging industry of predictive policing embraces because it shows how analyzing data can turn up surprises, things that can be used to predict future behavior.

The promise of doing the same thing with crime has prompted some large police departments such as Los Angeles to invest in partnerships with university researchers to devise predictive algorithms or formulas. As exotic as it sounds, it's just the next step in the changing world of police work, said William Bratton, the celebrated former chief of police in Los Angeles and New York City.

"It's really the continuation of the evolution of policing," Bratton said.

Starting in the 1990s, when police began using crime reports to identify hot spots, the focus has been on putting police officers near high-crime areas. Putting laptops in squad cars and publishing crime maps helped shorten response time. Now, police departments can quickly analyze a lot of crime data to spot crime trends as they're occurring.

"So after two or three incidents we can put a stop to it instead of waiting for 20 or 30," said Bratton, who now works as an independent security consultant.

"This is potentially labor-saving," he said. "That's very important because as we're going into very tough times with public financing, it's going to become more and more critical."

The hope is that predictive policing will help supplant random patrolling, which studies have shown doesn't work well.

"It's not enough to send people out and expect that they will have an impact on crime," said Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum in Washington.

Minneapolis police estimate that half of the city's most serious crime takes place on 6 per cent of its land area. Many of the worst areas are under video surveillance, as the city expands its use of closed circuit cameras. But even within those high crime areas, there might be a few blocks that are particularly rough on any given week, said Sgt. Jeff Egge, the head of the department's Crime Analysis Unit.

His staff of five analysts make predictions by printing color-coded maps that show blocks or small sectors where they expect crimes such as burglary, robbery and aggravated assaults. The techniques are less effective for "episodic" crimes such as homicide, which are more random.

The strategy adds a predictive element to the department's CODEFOR program, begun in 1998 to map the city's crime hot spots.

"When we started CODEFOR, we looked at where crime occurred last week," said Deputy Chief Rob Allen. "What we've asked people to do is to focus more on where we anticipate crime is going to occur next week. We've made it sort of future-oriented rather than assuming the same patterns will continue."

It's had its successes, police say.

Last October, two felons walked into the Dunn Brothers coffee shop in Uptown, pistol-whipped one of the two clerks, tied them up in a back room and took a bag of cash.

Witnesses called 911. Police arrived in time to catch the robbers. The two now face federal charges due to their criminal histories.

Fifth Precinct Inspector Ed Frizell said it was no coincidence that officers arrived so quickly. Fifth Precinct officers were looking out for storefront robberies along Lake Street as part of the precinct's predictive analysis.

"The officers of the Fifth Precinct have absolutely made this thing work," Frizell said. "They have total buy-in."

Frizell said he knows the color-coded maps issued by the Crime Analysis Unit are taken seriously by his patrol officers because he sees them taking notes off of fresh maps hung in the precinct.

It's easier than handing an officer a stack of the latest intelligence, said Lt. Jeff Rugel, who runs the Gang Enforcement Team out of the department's new strategic information center. "A commander issuing orders can say, 'See where it's red? Go be where it's red,' " Rugel said. "It makes it very easy to see what's going on as opposed to charts and charts of data."

It can be tough to gauge the success of predictive policing because analysts don't know whether added police presence at predicted hot spots deters the predicted crime.

"You can't measure things that don't happen," said Capt. Amelia Huffman, commander of the criminal investigations division.

If a prediction helps police catch someone doing a lot of crimes, the effect on local crime rates can be remarkable. For example, said Huffman, if a prolific burglar is captured, burglary dots on the weekly crime maps will "melt away."

Sometimes, predictive policing looks a lot more like common sense than science fiction, said Egge, who gave the example of how his unit analyzed years of data on burglaries that occurred each year during the week the University of Minnesota started classes.

Laptops, GPS units, iPods and other expensive items are often left in cars or hallways as students unpack, and many are stolen.

This past fall, crime analysts Hughes and Susan McPhee came up with maps of the Dinkytown area that highlighted the spots that historically have the most crime during opening week. Then crime prevention specialists warned students in that area to use caution while officers kept an eye on the worst spots. Crimes were down sharply, police said.

In December, Chief Dolan spoke at the grand opening of a police intelligence center where a few officers can monitor hundreds of live video feeds from across the city on three movie screens. They just have to know where to look.

Dolan said predictive policing has just begun in Minneapolis and will grow as the department becomes more accustomed to it. In the end, he said, it's just one more tool to put police where they should be.

"The most efficient thing we can do is prevent a crime," Dolan said. "Solving a crime is all good once a crime's occurred. It is much more efficient to be trying to prevent crime for a community."

© Copyright (c) McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

Location refreshed

Ottawa Citizen, Canada

Sgt. Jeff Egge runs the Crime Analysis Unit. Using crime data and software, his team is able to point out hotspots where crime is likely to occur.

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'Minority Report'? Data helps group target the next crime | View Clip
02/07/2011
Standard-Examiner - Online

MINNEAPOLIS -- Ryan Hughes, a young, spiky-haired computer analyst for the Minneapolis Police Department, pulls up a map of the Twin Cities on his screen.

"Here, here, here," he begins, pointing to six red dots. Each marks a robbery probably committed by the same man.

"And here," Hughes continues, pointing to a dot just northeast of Minneapolis, "is where I predicted he would go next."

Simple as a crime map, seemingly as far-fetched as ESP, such scenes are becoming more common. Police departments from Minneapolis to Los Angeles are turning to the emerging science of using recent crime data to predict where criminals will strike next.

The potentially revolutionary step could fundamentally alter the nature of police work.

The idea is that everyone, even criminals, are creatures of habit. With enough information about past crimes, it's possible to forecast their future target.

"We usually look at the last week and say, 'This is what happened in the last week,' " said Minneapolis Chief Tim Dolan. "Well we've added to that, saying, 'This is what we think's going to happen next week.' "

That kind of thinking has just begun in Minneapolis, but Dolan says it's already paid off in north and southwest Minneapolis, areas that led the city last year in reducing overall crime rates.

The strategy looks slightly different everywhere it's used, but predictive policing relies mainly on a police department's ability to accumulate deep databases of crime information that detail time, location, methods and numerous other bits of revealing data. Crunched by a computer analyst, the numbers reveal patterns.

That's the task facing a crew of five such crime analysts who work out of a second floor office in City Hall. Every day, they pore over recent crime data, slicing it different ways and sometimes using software to crunch it further. If a pattern emerges, they mark it down for consideration on an internal crime map that gets passed along to the chief for his weekly meeting with top inspectors and lieutenants.

A handful of police departments around the country have spent tens of thousands of dollars on more advanced software, or are working with university researchers and technology companies on algorithms to help them spot crime trends. It's akin to predicting where an earthquake's aftershocks will be felt, says a Santa Clara University mathematician developing formulas for such police work.

As for Hughes' prediction of where the Minneapolis robber would strike next? It was made using free software distributed by the National Institute of Justice. The software examines the location and timing of each crime to draw its conclusions. The estimate of the robber's next target turned out to be a mile off. But in the world of crime prediction, that's still counted as a success -- the kind of information that could put a patrol car close to the action.

Hughes, who hopes the Minneapolis department will eventually use more high-powered software for predictive policing, said that his maps have accurately predicted the locations of 45 percent of the city's violent crime.

"I have a better batting average than Joe Mauer," Hughes said.

To better understand predictive policing, consider the Pop-Tarts story.

Businesses such as Wal-Mart have long anticipated customers' needs based on weather and time of year. Coastal stores knew that as hurricanes approached, customers stocked up on bottled water and duct tape. Those things made sense, but looking more closely at customer data and comparing it to weather patterns, analysts at Wal-Mart noticed that customers anticipating a hurricane also bought more strawberry Pop-Tarts.

It's the sort of anecdote that the emerging industry of predictive policing embraces because it shows how analyzing data can turn up surprises, things that can be used to predict future behavior.

The promise of doing the same thing with crime has prompted some large police departments such as Los Angeles to invest in partnerships with university researchers to devise predictive algorithms or formulas. As exotic as it sounds, it's just the next step in the changing world of police work, said William Bratton, the celebrated former chief of police in Los Angeles and New York City.

"It's really the continuation of the evolution of policing," Bratton said.

Starting in the 1990s, when police began using crime reports to identify hot spots, the focus has been on putting police officers near high-crime areas. Putting laptops in squad cars and publishing crime maps helped shorten response time. Now, police departments can quickly analyze a lot of crime data to spot crime trends as they're occurring.

"So after two or three incidents we can put a stop to it instead of waiting for 20 or 30," said Bratton, who now works as an independent security consultant.

"This is potentially labor-saving," he said. "That's very important because as we're going into very tough times with public financing, it's going to become more and more critical."

The hope is that predictive policing will help supplant random patrolling, which studies have shown doesn't work well.

"It's not enough to send people out and expect that they will have an impact on crime," said Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum in Washington.

------

(c) 2011, Star Tribune (Minneapolis)

Visit the Star Tribune Web edition on the World Wide Web at http://www.startribune.com

Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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Google manager helped spark Egypt revolt | View Clip
02/07/2011
ABC Local - Online

CAIRO, Egypt (KGO) -- The young Google executive released after he was detained for protesting against Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak says he was behind the Facebook page that helped spark what he called "the revolution of the youth of the Internet" two weeks ago.

Within a few hours of being released by the Egyptian authorities, Ghonim was back on the streets protesting and he spoke briefly with Egyptian TV.

"I am not a hero, I slept for 12 days. The heroes were in the street. The heroes are the ones that went to the demonstrations. The heroes are the ones that sacrificed their lives. The heroes are the ones that were beaten. The heroes are the ones that were arrested and were exposed to dangers. I was not a hero," he said.

He announced his release with a tweet saying, "freedom is a bless that deserves fighting for It." Ghonim now has nearly 12,000 followers on twitter and he says he is one of the key figures behind a Facebook page that helped spark a social media revolution.

"Getting him released is exciting and all but the fact that he went back to the square says he is not in it for the fame. He is in it to get his message across," Ghonim's cousin who is a Santa Clara University student Hoda Magid said.

The 30-year-old executive, father of two, is based in Dubai working for Google as a marketing executive. He had been running social networking sites criticizing the Egyptian president, and it was believed YouTube showed him being taken into custody by police during a demonstration in Cairo on Jan. 28. But he now says it happened much more privately, in an alley where four men suddenly surrounded him. For days his whereabouts were unknown.

Members of an Egyptian opposition group met with Vice President Omar Suleiman to ask for his release. On Monday morning, a Google spokesperson issued a statement saying, "It is a huge relief that Wael Ghonim has been released. We send our best wishes to him and his family."

"I don't think there is any question that Twitter and Facebook were huge in this whole last couple of weeks series of events," Ghonim's former colleague Greg Coladonato said.

"There is a mix feeling that these protests although it might impact the departure of Mubarak but it is also hurting the country, the longer it takes to have a stable solution for Egypt," Ghonim's cousin Ayman Aniss said.

Has been in contact with Ghonim's wife and Ghonim wrote on Twitter that he went to Cairo against his family's wishes. One trait he lists on his twitter profile is that he loves challenging the status quo.

(Copyright ©2011 KGO-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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District Attorney's Office looking into China trips sponsored by Hacienda-La Puente Unified | View Clip
02/07/2011
Daily Breeze - Online

The Los Angeles District Attorney's office has opened an inquiry into allegations that a member of the Hacienda La Puente Unified School District Board of Education has been using district employees and resources to organize private trips to China, officials said.

Dave Demerjian, head of the Division of Public Integrity, could not provide any specifics about the inquiry, but Kai Chen, the anti-Chinese government activist who made the complaint, alleges that longtime board member Norman Hsu has for 15 years been using district time and resources to organize the trips.

"The tours he organized using school facilities had nothing to do with education," Chen said.

According to district documents, of nine people who took a trip to Tibet last year, only three worked in education. The other six included a pharmacist, court employee, cosmetologist and a ballet instructor.

"(They're) using public facilities, staff and resources to run a private enterprise," Chen said.

Superintendent Barbara Nakaoka disagreed, saying that the trips allow community members to learn about Chinese culture - an important thing in a district with many students of Chinese descent.

"Our attorneys have advised us that these trips do have a legitimacy," Nakaoka said. "They do not amount to a gift of public funds."

Hsu said he organizes the trips for the public because they are "good for the community and good for the people of the community."

While Nakaoka believes the use of district resources was justified, she has decided the trips will no longer be organized on district time to avoid any appearance of wrongdoing.

She declined to specify when the decision was made, only saying it was done after "quite a bit of thought."

Chen made the complaint after a district employee gave him a copy of an e-mail regarding the trips.

The e-mail was sent by district secretary Patti Lampassi to district employees and reads, in part:

"Regarding any future Spring Tours that are being arranged by Mr. Hsu, please share the following information with your family and friends who are interested. I will no longer be sending information or answering inquiries, collecting money, or collecting passports for the Spring tours."

Through a public records request, Chen obtained an additional 300 pages of documents related to trips organized by the district and Hsu.

Chen said the documents "are solid evidence that (Hsu) violated the law."

The district is in murky waters, said Kirk Hanson served as the first chairman of the Santa Clara County Ethics Commission and is now executive director of the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University.

Travel programs present a special challenge for school districts and universities.

"Travel like this has bedeviled many institutions, including educational institutions," he said. "There can be fraut with the potential for self-interest and the diversion of funds."

Hanson said school districts must walk a fine line when allowing members of the general public the go on educational trips.

"At a certain point, this becomes a private travel business," he said. "If the non-district employees are added for any other reason than rounding out the size of the group, then the program has lost its way and outlived its usefulness."

District personnel have been organizing the trips since the early `90s, but former superintendent John Kramar said back then, they were strictly for educational purposes.

"Those trips were arranged for school district personnel," he said. "At that time, to my knowledge, there was nothing else going on."

Documents show that participants were asked to write checks to either Hsu or Chinese Americans for Education (CAFED), a group controlled by Hsu, according to Kramar. Hsu would then book the group tours using those funds.

"Everything's handled through some special account that he has," Kramar said.

Hsu said he handles the money because he has experience booking trips to China and can get better prices.

"I'm the one who has the knowledge," he said. "I owned a travel agency before I came to the states."

Nakaoka said district officials have been very careful about how the trips have been handles and believes the inquiry will exonerate them.

"I strongly believe we have been forthright and upright about what we've done," she said. "It never serves our district any good to be hiding anything or doing anything dishonest."

justin.velasco@sgvn.com

626-962-8811, ext. 2718

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Freed Google executive says he helped spark Egypt revolt | View Clip
02/07/2011
San Bernardino Sun - Online

Wael Ghonim, Google Inc. marketing manager.

CAIRO -- The young Google executive detained by Egyptian authorities for 12 days said Monday that he was behind the Facebook page that helped spark what he called "the revolution of the youth of the Internet."

Meanwhile, a U.S.-based human rights group said nearly 300 people have died in two weeks of clashes.

Wael Ghonim, a marketing manager for Google, wept throughout an emotional TV interview just hours after he was freed. He described how he spent his entire time in detention blindfolded while his worried parents didn't know where he was. He insisted he had not been tortured and said his interrogators treated him with respect.

"This is the revolution of the youth of the Internet and now the revolution of all Egyptians," he said, adding that he was taken aback when the security forces holding him branded him a traitor.

"Anyone with good intentions is the traitor because being evil is the norm," he said. "If I was a traitor, I would have stayed in my villa in the Emirates and made good money and said like others, 'Let this country go to hell.' But we are not traitors," added Ghonim, an Egyptian who oversees Google's marketing in the Middle East and Africa from Dubai, one of the United Arab Emirates.

The protesters already have brought the most sweeping changes since President Hosni Mubarak took power 30 years ago, but they are keeping up the pressure in hopes of achieving their ultimate goal of ousting Mubarak.

Ghonim

has become a hero of the demonstrators since he went missing Jan. 27, two days after the protests began.

Monday, he confirmed reports by protesters that he was the administrator of the Facebook page "We are all Khaled Said" that was one of the main tools for organizing the demonstration that started the movement Jan. 25.

Khaled Said was a 28-year-old businessman who died in June at the hands of undercover police, setting off months of protests against the hated police. The police also have been blamed for inflaming violence by trying to suppress these anti-government demonstrations by force.

Ghonim's whereabouts were not known until Sunday, when a prominent Egyptian businessman confirmed he was under arrest and would soon be released.

"No one literally knew anything about him," since he disappeared, said his second cousin, Hoda Magid, who is studying biology at Santa Clara University. "It wasn't until his release that we knew. We are excited."

Magid, who moved to Fremont with her family a decade ago, saw Ghonim last summer when she and her family returned to their home country.

"I don't think he's the face of the movement," she said of her cousin. "His message is the face of the movement."

Time and again during the two weeks of demonstrations, protesters have pointed proudly to the fact that they have no single leader, as if to say that it is everyone's uprising. Still, there seems at times to be a longing among the crowds at Cairo's Tahrir Square, the main demonstration site, for someone to rally around.

The unmasking of Ghonim as the previously unknown administrator of the Facebook page that started the protests could give the crowds someone to look to for inspiration to press on.

Whether Ghonim forcefully takes up that mantle remains to be seen, but he said repeatedly in Monday night's interview that he did not feel he was a hero.

"I didn't want anyone to know that I am the administrator," he said. "There are no heroes; we are all heroes on the street. And no one is on their horse and fighting with the sword."

Mercury News staff writer Julia Prodis Sulek contributed to this report.

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Considering mandate alternatives | View Clip
02/07/2011
Congress.org

Liberal Rep. Peter A. DeFazio is proposing that Americans be allowed to forgo buying health insurance if they agree to pay for their care. Senate Democrats are working on other incentives to avoid requiring people to get insurance.

From the start, Republicans have uniformly opposed the health care overhaul and pressed to repeal it. Now, Democrats are increasingly exploring legislative options should the Supreme Court strike down the law's requirement that individuals get health insurance, or throw out the law altogether — contingency planning that seemed unthinkable just a few months ago.

[Request a free trial to CQ HealthBeat.]

Talk of alternatives to the requirement picked up last week after a federal court in Florida ruled the law (PL 111-148, PL 111-152) unconstitutional. DeFazio, who voted for the overhaul, sent a letter to colleagues saying Congress could quickly resolve any question about the law's constitutionality by allowing individuals to opt out of the requirement to carry insurance as long as they take full responsibility for their health expenses.

The proposal could prove attractive to those who support access to health care and recognize some Americans prefer not to carry insurance. “Buying insurance should be a choice, not a matter of federal coercion,” wrote the Oregon Democrat. “But with that choice comes responsibility.”

Under DeFazio's draft proposal, those who do not want health insurance would be required to file an “affidavit of personal responsibility” and waive their right to enroll in a health insurance exchange or Medicaid. They also would be barred from using the bankruptcy law to reduce health-related debt.

Democratic Sens. Ben Nelson and Claire McCaskill also are exploring alternatives to provide financial incentives to those who sign up for health insurance during an open-enrollment period. Their ideas are fashioned after one Congress used when it provided a prescription drug benefit for Medicare recipients. It's an effort to pass constitutional muster and ease the worries of moderate Democrats who dislike the individual mandate.

Nelson's interest predates the court decision since he has been looking for an alternative to the individual mandate for nearly a year. That he faces reelection in 2012 in Nebraska, one of the 26 states that were party to the lawsuit in Florida, has only added urgency to his effort. Nelson has asked the Government Accountability Office (GAO) and the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to analyze and provide an estimate of the cost of his proposal. Nelson spokesman Jake Thompson said the senator would prefer to offer people incentives to get insurance rather than have a requirement.

It's unclear when the GAO and CBO reports will be completed, but Nelson is hopeful they will be done in time for him to introduce legislation to replace the individual mandate.

“If it's a viable alternative that would bring a large number of people into the system, he would introduce that to replace the individual mandate,” Thompson said.

McCaskill, who faces re-election next year in Missouri, said the difficulty is finding an alternative that ensures the insurance pool has a mix of both sick and healthy individuals — a combination needed to spread risk. “How do you say to a private insurance company, ‘You must insure somebody that you know is going to cost you a lot more money than somebody who hasn't been sick before,' if you do not have more people in the pool?” she asked.

McCaskill wants any alternative to maintain a private, free-market system that still covers the chronically ill. The question, she said, is whether the incentives will prompt enough people to buy insurance to avoid penalties if they don't.

Republicans applauded the Florida judge's ruling to promote their call to allow states to decide whether to participate in the health care program. Sens. John Barrasso of Wyoming and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina unveiled a measure (S 244) to allow states to opt out of any or all of the provisions. “My view of the law is that if you allowed the states to opt out, half would,” Graham said on Fox News. “That would make us start over with a new bill.”

Other proposals coming from Congress are far less sweeping, including a proposal to permit states to seek waivers from the law to establish parallel health care systems far sooner than 2017, as the law permits. Democratic Sens. Ron Wyden of Oregon and Mary L. Landrieu of Louisiana and Republican Sen. Scott P. Brown of Massachusetts introduced a bill Feb. 1 (S 248) that would allow states to seek waivers as soon as 2014. Vermont's three lawmakers — Democratic Sen. Patrick J. Leahy, independent Sen. Bernard Sanders and Democratic Rep. Peter Welch — are proposing that the state be permitted to institute a single-payer system.

The White House has largely ignored growing calls for substantive changes and is banking on the high court finding the law constitutional. “As a political strategy they have to maintain a complete air of confidence,” says Brad Joondeph, a law professor at Santa Clara University.

-- Jane Norman, CQ HealthBeat Associate Editor

Recent Headlines

While pro-democracy protests in Egypt intensified last week, Patrick J. Leahy was watching very closely.

Considering mandate alternatives

Liberal Rep. Peter A. DeFazio is proposing that Americans be allowed to forgo buying health insurance if they agree to pay for their care.

The rise of the tea parties and the shifting focus of CPAC may suggest otherwise, but many leaders believe concerns about abortion and gay marriage still drive the conservative vote.

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District Attorney's Office looking into China trips sponsored by Hacienda-La Puente Unified | View Clip
02/06/2011
San Gabriel Valley Tribune - Online

The Los Angeles District Attorney's office has opened an inquiry into allegations that a member of the Hacienda La Puente Unified School District Board of Education has been using district employees and resources to organize private trips to China, officials said.

Dave Demerjian, head of the Division of Public Integrity, could not provide any specifics about the inquiry, but Kai Chen, the anti-Chinese government activist who made the complaint, alleges that longtime board member Norman Hsu has for 15 years been using district time and resources to organize the trips.

"The tours he organized using school facilities had nothing to do with education," Chen said.

According to district documents, of nine people who took a trip to Tibet last year, only three worked in education. The other six included a pharmacist, court employee, cosmetologist and a ballet instructor.

"(They're) using public facilities, staff and resources to run a private enterprise," Chen said.

Superintendent Barbara Nakaoka disagreed, saying that the trips allow community members to learn about Chinese culture - an important thing in a district with many students of Chinese descent.

"Our attorneys have advised us that these trips do have a legitimacy," Nakaoka said. "They do not amount to a gift of public funds."

Hsu said he organizes the trips for the public because they are "good for the community and good for the people of the community."

While Nakaoka believes the use of district resources was justified, she has decided the trips will no longer be organized on district time to avoid any appearance of wrongdoing.

She declined to specify when the decision was made, only saying it was done after "quite a bit of thought."

Chen made the complaint after a district employee gave him a copy of an e-mail regarding the trips.

The e-mail was sent by district secretary Patti Lampassi to district employees and reads, in part:

"Regarding any future Spring Tours that are being arranged by Mr. Hsu, please share the following information with your family and friends who are interested. I will no longer be sending information or answering inquiries, collecting money, or collecting passports for the Spring tours."

Through a public records request, Chen obtained an additional 300 pages of documents related to trips organized by the district and Hsu.

Chen said the documents "are solid evidence that (Hsu) violated the law."

The district is in murky waters, said Kirk Hanson served as the first chairman of the Santa Clara County Ethics Commission and is now executive director of the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University.

Travel programs present a special challenge for school districts and universities.

"Travel like this has bedeviled many institutions, including educational institutions," he said. "There can be fraut with the potential for self-interest and the diversion of funds."

Hanson said school districts must walk a fine line when allowing members of the general public the go on educational trips.

"At a certain point, this becomes a private travel business," he said. "If the non-district employees are added for any other reason than rounding out the size of the group, then the program has lost its way and outlived its usefulness."

District personnel have been organizing the trips since the early `90s, but former superintendent John Kramar said back then, they were strictly for educational purposes.

"Those trips were arranged for school district personnel," he said. "At that time, to my knowledge, there was nothing else going on."

Documents show that participants were asked to write checks to either Hsu or Chinese Americans for Education (CAFED), a group controlled by Hsu, according to Kramar. Hsu would then book the group tours using those funds.

"Everything's handled through some special account that he has," Kramar said.

Hsu said he handles the money because he has experience booking trips to China and can get better prices.

"I'm the one who has the knowledge," he said. "I owned a travel agency before I came to the states."

Nakaoka said district officials have been very careful about how the trips have been handles and believes the inquiry will exonerate them.

"I strongly believe we have been forthright and upright about what we've done," she said. "It never serves our district any good to be hiding anything or doing anything dishonest."

626-962-8811, ext. 2718

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Tomorrow's Theologians | View Clip
02/06/2011
America: The National Catholic Weekly

A new generation imagines the future.

G iven the abundance of recent data about the waning of the Christian faith among the young, it might seem foolhardy to suggest that Catholic theology may be on the verge of resurgence. Certainly, many observers warn of theological malaise; some theologians are called to task by ecclesiastical authorities; and the mid-20th-century generation of “great theologians” has passed. Yet theologians can discern the future reflected in today's students, including those of the North American Jesuit universities, some of whom aspire to become theologians themselves.

Over the years I have met a wide variety of students and reflected on the theological education offered them. Without the baggage of ecclesiastical battles and culture wars, students come with whatever they have received from parents and teachers. Increasingly, students reflect not only the cultural and ethnic diversity of society but also some of the wider culture's positive values, like a strong yearning for a just social order.

Some students claim multiple religious identities and express faith in new ways; they eschew dogmatism and show openness toward people unlike themselves. They are accustomed to immersion in other worlds. Many, even students raised in nonreligious environments, exhibit an ethic of service. Some students pursue a theological vocation not in order to become professional theologians but as part of their search for a theological horizon to inform their lives. A handful will pursue graduate work in theology or ministry, including Protestants who seek a systematic framework for theological reflection. Such students are forcing the current custodians of the flame to imagine with them the future shape of Catholic theology. Who are these students?

Idealistic realists. Contemporary students were born into a world after modernity. They lack some of the opportunities their parents and teachers enjoyed at their age, despite the Vietnam War and the upheavals of the 1960s: availability of loans, a robust job market and relative social stability. But their parents and teachers, especially those now around age 60, were then living in the final stages of a modern era that was quickly unravelling. The frameworks of coherence that were part of the modern “project” were disintegrating in the wake of two world wars, the bomb and the advent of modern forms of genocide.

What marks the present age is a growing sense of incoherence and threat, born of an increasing awareness of poverty, the effects of total war, the implosion of political and religious institutions, ecological disaster and endangerment of life on the planet. Still, students today, perhaps with the perenniel idealism of youth, want to help and serve. Rather than escape into a spiritual fantasyland, they see no salvation outside of engaging a reality they all share. They are idealistic realists.

Pioneers. As many students see it, religious energy is mushrooming. It is found not only in Catholicism's ecclesial movements (ranging from Sant'Egidio to Communione e Liberazione) but in the growth of neo-Christian movements and “churches” in developing countries, as well as in the megalopolises (like Los Angeles) of developed countries. Students also see the energy of religion outside Christianity, in Islam and Islamic movements, in Hinduism and even in Buddhism, which is an “institutional religion” with its own texts, rituals and ethical codes. And they witness the muscle-flexing of postcolonial churches in Africa and Asia and the crisscrossing of religious traditions, sometimes within their own families. Many have a mixed religious heritage (Buddhist and Christian, Islamic and Christian, Hindu and Buddhist, Jewish and Christian). Some students even participate in religious practices like Wicca and “paganism.” Within this universe of energy, they are looking for roots. Many hunger for the solid food of theology and a linkage with ancient Christian traditions, even as they also seek to enter non-Christian religious worlds. These students challenge theological views that are too exclusivist or rigid in their understanding of the religious others in their midst. Living within this mix, these students are pioneers.

Cultural experts. Today's students are accustomed to a world linked by technology and popular culture. Communication transcends the particularities of place and creates a sense of cultural simultaneity across the globe. The students know one another's cultures in uncanny ways. Despite being tethered to smart phones, Facebook and Twitter, they recognize superficiality when they see it and desire something profound instead. That desire is expressed in music and film, where messages for peace, toleration and care for the earth establish a credo among many students who are not rooted in religious observance but seek the depths of being human.

There are dangers associated with popular culture and a pan-culture of hedonism (that lures their elders as well). But it is a mistake to label popular culture the enemy of faith, casting it as a “culture of death” and fighting it rather than working within it to learn from it. A rejection of popular culture risks rejecting prophetic sensibilities that might otherwise be missed. Students are cultural experts in some ways that their elders cannot be.

Spiritual, not religious. One should not be too quick to condemn the “I'm spiritual, not religious” mantra of many students, for it may express a desire for more depth than they are being fed in mainstream religious education.

Two dimensions of Christian faith have deep appeal to many of these students. First is their discovery that faith is not the same thing as assent to dogma or adherence to religious duty. Religion in these senses attends faith but does not describe it. Rather, faith is the acceptance of the gift of God's love in the person of Jesus. It is a relationality “more intimate to me than I am to myself,” to quote St. Augustine. When shared and communicated, that relationality establishes a community of faith. When students see it this way they are freed to focus on the heart of the matter and to appreciate the classical expressions of faith, like the creeds and council teachings.

The second dimension is the notion of God as mystery: God as incomprehensible, ineffable, endlessly knowable and lovable yet not possibly contained or summed up within a single doctrinal formulation. God is not an object alongside others. This too is freeing. It allows students to discover how their search for the spiritual dovetails with the deepest parts of their religious selves. The choice is not between atheism and faith but between simplistic formulations of faith and a journey through life into their own transcendent depths. Many students seek to be religious with spiritual depth.

No-nonsense Catholics. Like their elders, many students hope for a transformed church. Even non-Catholic students express as much. Their hopes do not issue from any failure of their elders to embrace the Second Vatican Council, for this generation was born long after the council, which they identify (rightly) as a mid-20th-century event, a product of the waning days of modernity and its optimism. Very many young men and women express a desire for ordination as long as they can also be married.

What bothers these students, at least as much as hypocrisy and clerical sexual abuse, are the foppish trappings of hierarchical clericalism. They seek a vital, Gospel-imbued Catholicism that is contemporary. They consider as “no-brainers” the ideas that the church should: be conversant with science, popular culture and secularity (not threatened by them); allow ordination to married men or women; engage other religions in positive ways; reflect a deeper understanding of marriage; accept homosexuals in committed partnerships; and serve the poorest and listen to their voices. Many students seek a church where they can pray deeply. When they visit Maryknoll missionaries working with AIDS victims in Namibia or Jesuits working with gangs in Los Angeles, for example, the students describe this as the church “at its best.” These are no-nonsense Catholics.

Future theologians. Some students will become the church's future theologians. While it is possible to criticize this generation for being overly idealistic, for not taking the problem of evil seriously enough and for being too sanguine about the virtues of popular culture, today's students also raise questions that their elders ignore at their own risk and at risk to the Gospel. They typically ask, for example: Why is it important at all to claim the uniqueness of Jesus among the many holy “saviors” of world religions? What are we to make of the claim that Jesus is God? Why is it not the case that the ultimate validity of any religion is the degree to which it contributes to and validates a life of self-giving virtue? Why does Christianity, as students perceive it, seem so focused on the enforcement of moral codes surrounding sexuality? These students are not rebels; they ask such questions from the standpoint of their own cultural reality and in a search for intellectually honest truth.

Five Guiding Principles

Given that these are the students enrolling, what kind of a theological program might a Jesuit university imagine for them? The following five principles are derived from a Jesuit take on the aims of Catholic higher education. They presume that universities—through curriculum, including Scripture—will ensure that the Catholic tradition is integral. The issue is less one of content than of how to engage that content. The rigor and objectives of any new program should stand in continuity with what is classic and contemporary about Jesuit self-understanding.

1. Let theological knowledge emerge from the study of what is nontheological. This principle reflects the deepest wisdom of Jesuit tradition: that teachers build up to a focus on theological matter from that which is nontheological. It implies that other forms of knowledge (including the sciences, philosophy, literature and the arts) are crucial to the formation of a theological imagination. What stops some students from seriously engaging theology is the inability of some theology professors and church teachers to engage nontheological matter, like science and technology, politics or even sports in a critical yet positive way. Consequently, students cannot see the value of theology in its own right, for their teachers do not see the relevance of faith to any other domain of knowledge or experience.

2. Let the nontheological understanding of religions and cultures inform theology. The problem of failing to see the relevance of faith to other forms of knowledge is not altogether solved by the nontheological study of religion, as in religious studies, although the field of religious studies is crucial to the development of an integral theological mind. Religious studies should not be an adjunct to theology but a partner. Theology should help inform religious studies toward a consideration of the ultimate ends of religious rituals, beliefs and codes. Other disciplines can help students understand the contexts in which faith arises: philosophy first, and then history, literature, sociology, psychology, anthropology, economics and the arts.

3. Let theological insights be gleaned through interreligious dialogue. Interreligious dialogue is often considered an appendage to serious theological inquiry, and indeed it is to be distinguished in its methods from theological speculation. Yet an understanding of Christian faith through a study of the texts, rituals, ethics and doctrines of others can lead to a deeper understanding of one's own tradition. The emergence of comparative theology is among the most hopeful developments in recent years; it engenders theological vitality among students with a firsthand knowledge of religious pluralism. The juxtaposition of a Gospel text with a Buddhist or Hindu sutra or a passage from the Gita, for example, helps to open the theological mind. These readings in a university setting can deepen not only interreligious understanding but theological understanding as well.

4. Let lived experience of the impoverished and marginalized be a touchstone for theological learning. Firsthand learning from exposure to and prolonged immersion in the worlds of poor and marginalized people (battered women, orphaned children, persons who suffer from stigmatizing diseases, and the like) can lead to a transformation of hearts and an opening of minds. Even at its most speculative, theological understanding must include within its gaze concrete human existence in its various historical forms. Like interreligious dialogue, direct learning (sometimes called service learning) should no longer be seen as an option but as an integral element of theological education.

5. Let the God-mystery stand as the horizon for all learning in the university. At the Jesuit university, God cannot be relegated to designated departments or programs. Such relegation would be proper at a secular state or private university. In the Jesuit university, however, God as mystery stands as the finality of all activity, even the most “godless.” All modes of learning are either implicitly or explicitly theological since they derive from an explicit theological understanding of the nature and destiny of creation. This view makes room at the Jesuit university for the embrace of all who do not share the Catholic faith or who deny the existence of God. For at its root the Jesuit university is a project of faith, an affirmation that God is disclosed in the human even when the human cannot find or refuses to find God.

While I write from a particular vantage point, that of Jesuit education, I hope that some of these ideas might prove relevant to other Catholic universities. The real news here for theological education is what students are bringing to the table, for these are tomorrow's theologians, those who will bring about a resurgence of Catholic theology in the near future. That should give us hope.

Paul Crowley offers a list of promising young theologians.

Paul G. Crowley, S.J., a theology professor, is chair of the religious studies department at Santa Clara University.

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First Commonwealth names managers | View Clip
02/05/2011
Indiana Gazette - Online, The

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First Commonwealth Financial Corporation recently announced the hiring of Traci L. Conlon and the promotion of Matthew T. Zuro to regional manager.

Zuro and Conlon will oversee regional territories in First Commonwealth's Pittsburgh market. In their new roles, they will lead the bank's consumer sales and services activities.

Conlon has been hired as vice president/regional manager and will oversee 11 offices north of Pittsburgh. Before joining First Commonwealth, she was a marketing and business consultant to the finance, health care and information technology industries. She also served as a divisional sales development consultant for Wells Fargo Financial.

Conlon earned a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration and marketing from Robert Morris University. She is the co-author of the book "Inspired Entrepreneurs."

She resides in Sewickley with her husband, Michael, and their two children, Emily and Luke.

Zuro has been promoted to vice president/regional manager and will oversee 12 offices east of Pittsburgh. He has been with the bank since March 2009. He served as a business banker, providing expertise to small-business clients in project funding, business growth and cash flow management.

He is the founder of Nationwide Auto Glass Inc., and has experience in commercial land development and property management.

Zuro lives in Wadsworth, Ohio, with his wife, Carrie, and their five children, Lauren, Hannah, Blake, Ellie and Madilyn.

o o o

First Commonwealth also recently announced the hiring of Fergal Finnan as vice president-business integration manager.

Finnan joins the bank's deposit and electronic services group and will assume responsibility for product management over FCB payments and related services. He will help define First Commonwealth's overall positioning and tactical efforts related to transaction and liquidity services.

"We are extremely excited about the addition of Fergal Finnan to our team," Norm Montgomery, senior vice president/business integration, said in a release. "His unique skill set and perspective in electronic banking services complements our existing efforts and will help us ensure a seamless delivery of financial solutions to our valued clients."

Finnan most recently served as senior product manager at PayPal.

Finnan holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in law and accounting from the University of Limerick and an MBA in finance and marketing from Santa Clara University. He and his family recently relocated to Pittsburgh from San Jose.

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What Silicon Valley Geeks Can Learn From Roman Legionnaires: Tech News and Analysis « | View Clip
02/05/2011
Giga Om

I recently spoke at a CEO summit with a group of IT executives from Silicon Valley and China. Naturally many were concerned about the slowdown of Silicon Valley innovation as well as the copycatting and IP protection issues in China. I challenged the group to think about innovation in the bigger context of human civilization. Is tech innovation really slowing down, and is copying really that bad?

Innovation is 99 percent imitation with 1 percent differentiation

Humans won the battle of the species race. But why? Is it because we use tools, communicate with language or have a bigger brain? Scientists have recently discovered through advanced DNA mapping that we humans are humble enough to be willing to copy and

build off each other's knowledge . It was our ability to acquire collective intelligence that separated us from the rest of the hominids pack approximately 40,000 years ago. neocortex, the outer and most advanced layer of the brain. The neocortex is really a learning machine -- we observe cause-effect patterns in life, store them in the brain and predict the effect when the same cause appears again. Humans institutionalize this process in our first 12 to 16 years of our life -- we go to school and learn these patterns experienced by our ancestors.

Innovation comes from solving the new challenges we face and combining it with our knowledge of existing state-of-art technologies and paradigms. "Standing on the shoulders of giants" is the only motto for successful innovation, but too many entrepreneurs make the common mistake of inventing in a vacuum.

Our economy has always been global

Human civilization is a "learning" history across time and geographic regions. But if we had only lived in the Roman Empire in 50 B.C., we'd have thought Romans had invented everything. Halfway around the world, the Chinese of the Han Dynasty had the same thought. But the reality is that these distinct civilizations were never developed independently. From Egypt to Euphrates to Greeks to Romans, village after village and generation after generation, people migrated, copied and propagated their skills, knowledge and culture. If you have been to the 5000-year old archaeological site

Sanxingdui in central China, you would think that you were visiting ancient Egypt or Greece.

The world economy was actually global even back then; it just wasn't obvious to the people who lived at the time, because they were limited by their own human life span.

If Marco Polo could have traveled at light speed

What does this mean to modern humans? The Internet has changed the scale of distance and time. Where it took Marco Polo 30 years to propagate the know-how of making noodles, it now takes a web whiz kid only three weeks to get a similar idea around the world twice.

Just look at the example of Groupon, which broke the code of viral growth to promote local services, using stay-at-home moms as the social nucleus while combining the power of Internet and telesales. In two years, Groupon is at a $2.2 billion revenue runway and turned down

The story doesn't stop there. The rest of the world is copying the formula of this modern "spaghetti" and has started to make their versions of Groupon: European entrepreneurs have formed dozens of successful group buying sites. In China, there are over 1,000 clones - the no. 1 player being Lashou.com, which is breaking out in China, mirroring Groupon's success in the US.

If you look closer at these local clones, their actual execution is quite different, much like spaghetti is not Chinese noodles. For example, Groupon credits its success to having a centralized call center for accessing small business owners in the top 100 US cities. But Bo Wu, the founder of Lashou.com, discovered that China is not "one country" after all. There are many regional dialects preventing Groupon-like telesales to work. There were also significant cultural differences that he needed to consider. For instance, while lamb chops are a best-selling food in Beijing, the Shanghainese view it as "barbarian" food. So Bo's solution has been to deploy 100 local sales teams in the country's top cities instead of a call center.

Action-driven collective intelligence

In the business world today, we still rely on collective intelligence to innovate albeit in more technology advanced ways - whether it be talking with an overseas partner on Skype or email, or learning what our customers are saying on Twitter. While you and I obviously can't communicate directly to everyone on the web this way, what we can do is learn from their infinite collective implicit actions and experiences. The entire universe of humans makes billions - if not trillions - of silent "votes" each day as they navigate the web, but a very small percentage of these people are actually publishing their ideas. There's a tremendous amount we can learn from their silent actions - not what they say on Twitter, but what they do when they see something they like. For example, if a GPS tracked device showed a restaurant was full, you wouldn't need a Yelp review to guess the restaurant quality.

Another key difference of today's web from ancient civilization is that we can connect contextually without being personal friends. If I am shopping for a 3-D LED TV, there are many people around the world who can help me on that decision.

This concept has huge implications for innovation. Imagine a world when these "contextual friends" start to invent things together!

Smart "copying" has been the core to the success of human civilization, and I predict that web-based collective intelligence will fuel the next frontier of innovation. By building on the successes of other entrepreneurs along with the implicit wisdom of all web users innovation is poised to reach new heights in the next decade.

Baynote, a leading software developer for recommendation engine. He is also a partner of GSR Ventures , a top China-focused technology VC. He is an angel investor, a board advisor for Santa Clara University, and the president of See how a dynamic, cloud-based infrastructure can flexibly support key business needs-and whether it's right for your organization.
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He's a star on Bay Area stages | View Clip
02/05/2011
Contra Costa Times - Online

Back in college in Texas, Aldo Billingslea was a star on the football field, playing guard and tackle for the Austin College Kangaroos. Now he's one of the MVPs of the Bay Area theater scene.

A natural athlete, the brawny 6-foot-4-inch Texas native was expected to be good at sports, but no one saw his hunger for the stage coming. In fact his commitment to the theat-uh drew quite a bit of ribbing by the jock set.

"Whenever I screwed up a play the coach would yell 'Hey Billingslea, get your head out of "Hamlet!'," recalls the down-to-earth actor while rushing from his home in Santa Clara to rehearsals for "Collapse" at Berkeley's Aurora Theatre Company. "Everybody got a big kick out of that." Find things to do Browse our event listings Restaurant listings Movie listings | Movie theaters Concert listings Performing arts listings His passion for the pigskin didn't last, but the 45-year-old went on to devote his life to the theater, an arena in which he combines a nonstop work ethic, a magnetic stage presence and a deep sense of commitment to the craft.

''It's like August Wilson said in 'Joe Turner,' you've got to find your song," Billingslea says in his rich baritone. "This is mine. It's my calling in life. It's why I am on the planet. The theater is the place I feel most connected to the rest of humanity."

A veteran of the acclaimed Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Billingslea now spends most of his time as an associate professor at Santa Clara University. His specialties include assessing the impact seminal African-American playwrights have had on the arc of the American theater, from Lorraine Hansberry to Suzan-Lori Parks.

"As a teacher who wants to educate the whole person," he says, "I think it's important to give voice to individuals who have made major contributions to the art."

Unlike some academics, he knows how to make art accessible, and he sprinkles his conversations with "awesome" as well as "anon." He's no glory hog (he acts with little troupes as well as big ones) and he is a "serial commuter" (he knows exactly how many miles to Marin Theatre Company: 73). After "Collapse," he will direct "A Raisin in the Sun" at Mountain View's Pear Avenue Theatre. If he is not as well known as some actors, it's not because he doesn't deserve the attention.

He's "one of the Bay Area theater's greatest assets," says Robert Kelley, artistic director of TheatreWorks, where the actor is a regular. "An outstanding artist, yes, an inspiring teacher, certainly, but also a community leader of immense integrity and intense commitment. And he's a great guy besides."

"Aldo is so bright and committed to his work, and the theater in general, and he brings all that strength and assured confidence to every conversation, every insight and every role," says actor/director Michael Gene Sullivan of the San Francisco Mime Troupe. "The reason he isn't famous is that he wouldn't drop his academic commitment ".... It means that one of the finest actors of the past decade has spent too much time out of the limelight.

"That was the price of his commitment, and he has never to my knowledge regretted it."

That sense of balance may be the secret to his success. In fact, he almost signed up for Shakespeare Santa Cruz this summer but turned it down to spend time with his 12-year-old daughter Trinity. That way his wife, Renee, an artist, can log some time in the studio.

"It's a juggling act because we are both artists," he says. "For a long time when my daughter was small, my wife stayed home to be with her, so now it's time for me to do my part. Basically I am making deposits on hubby points because when I have a show to do, I make a lot of withdrawals."

One of the reasons he keeps busy is his versatility. The actor can skip from Shakespeare to hip-hop without missing a beat. In recent years he has garnered raves playing Othello (Marin Theatre Company), the Obama-like Harmond Wilks in "Radio Golf" (TheatreWorks) and the escaped slave Damascus in "Jesus Moonwalks the Mississippi" (San Francisco's Cutting Ball Theater).

In "Collapse," a new play inspired by the 2007 Mississippi River bridge tragedy in Minneapolis, playwright Allison Moore explores how people struggle to cope with chaos that spirals out beyond their control. He plays a comic fellow named Ted whom he describes as a "sex addict who's impotent."

"Aldo is primarily known for his dramatic roles, but what has impressed me over the years is his range," says Tom Ross, artistic director of the Aurora. "One of my joys in having Aldo appear here in 'Collapse' is that people are going to see what a funny guy Aldo can be. He is hilarious."

"I've never seen Aldo give anything but a luminous performance," Kelley says.

Billingslea is that rare actor who doesn't love to talk about himself, preferring to keep the spotlight on the work at hand. "If I do my job right, I serve the play and I serve the audience. It's really not about me."

In a field dominated by monster egos, his modesty stands out.

"He cares deeply about people, shares his feelings openly, is honest in all things, and has one of the greatest smiles I've ever met," Kelley says. "Aldo actually believes that theater is important in shaping our lives and our culture. You can't be around him for long without realizing that. It's something he communicates in word and deed day after day. His enthusiasm for making art rubs off on everyone he meets."

Indeed, when asked how rehearsals are going at the Aurora, Billingslea responds with characteristic glee: "The brother is stoked!"

Contact Karen D'Souza at 408-271-3772. Check out her theater reviews, features and blog at www.mercurynews.com/karen-dsouza.

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Study by Consulting Firm TCGen and Researchers from Santa Clara University Identifies Best Practices in Social Media for Product Development | View Clip
02/05/2011
Computeruser.com

VERNON HILLS, Ill. – September 27, 2010 – CDW LLC, a leading multi-brand provider of technology solutions to business, government, education and healthcare, today announced the results of its Business Continuity Straw Poll, based on a survey of 200 Information Technology (IT) decision makers at

1. The most successful social platforms in the study used specialized communities with prequalified participants. Social platforms (such as the IBM Jams), properly applied, debunk the myth that innovation cannot be accomplished on a short, fixed schedule.

2. Implementing “social” product features, such as RSS (Really Simple Syndication) as a feature in software products helps organizations garner near-real-time, customized user feedback.

3. Involving the “virtual voice” of customers can accelerate design decisions and shorten time to market by making use of content such as user-generated photographs of products in use.

4. Allowing customers to help drive strategy by contributing to the product roadmap and seeing the result of their input enabled one study participant to become more customer focused.

5. The learning curve is shortened and standards and best practices are established most effectively when organizations invest in a small number of people dedicated to accelerating adoption and ensuring consistent application of social platforms.

6. Adopting a repeatable innovation model in conjunction with an idea-management platform such as BrightIdea accelerates time to market.

Santa Clara University Leavey School of Business professors Tammy L. Madsen, Kumar Sarangee and Jennifer L. Woolley worked with TCGen to develop the study. It examined the impact of social media initiatives over the entire product-development lifecycle — from ideation to testing — and found the impact goes beyond open innovation and includes product strategy, product definition, and knowledge management.

The full report is available from TCGen.

About TCGen, Inc.

TCGen is an experienced based, management consulting firm specializing in product development and strategy. TCGen can help clients profit by assisting them with social strategies, predictive metrics, product development, product definition, and strategy. Our clients range from the largest high tech clients in North America to early stage startups in software, telecom, medical and consumer electronics.

About the Leavey School of Business

The Leavey School of Business at Santa Clara University began in 1923, and was one of the first business schools in the country to receive national accreditation. Its undergraduate business, MBA and Executive MBA programs are consistently ranked among the top in the nation. The curriculum at all levels emphasizes the leadership role of business in creating an ethical society as well as business responsibilities for social justice and sustainability in the global marketplace. The School opened its new $49 million building for undergraduate, graduate, and professional business education in Fall 2008. For more information, see http://www.scu.edu/business/

MEDIA CONTACTS:

TCGen, Inc.

John Carter, 650-854-0864

jcarter(at)tcgen(dot)com

@jcarter_tcgen

TCGen, Inc.

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Santa Clara University Professor Explains U.S.-Egypt Relations | View Clip
02/04/2011
NBC Bay Area News at 6 PM - KNTV-TV

Santa Clara University Professor Farid Senzai discusses the political crisis in Egypt and its relations with the U.S.

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Study by Consulting Firm TCGen and Researchers from Santa Clara University Identifies Best Practices in Social Media for Product Development | View Clip
02/04/2011
AllVoices

A new study by TCGen, Inc., a Silicon Valley-based management consulting firm, and three Santa Clara University business professors has identified several best practices for using social media to speed up or improve the product-development process. The report How Social Media Methodologies Are Applied to High-Technology Companies in New Product Development, examines six organizations that have successfully used social media to improve efficiency, decrease time to market, and increase innovation as demonstrated in case studies outlined in the report. The authors of the study noticed that more and more organizations are using social media to reduce the complexity and challenge of product development, spurring them to study the issue further to gain an understanding of what works and what does not...The most successful social platforms in the study used specialized communities with prequalified participants. Social platforms (such as the IBM Jams), properly applied, debunk the myth that innovation cannot be accomplished on a short, fixed schedule...Implementing social product features, such as RSS (Really Simple Syndication) as a feature in software products helps organizations garner near-real-time, customized user feedback...Involving the virtual voice of customers can accelerate design decisions and shorten time to market by making use of content such as user-generated photographs of products in use...Allowing customers to help drive strategy by contributing to the product roadmap and seeing the result of their input enabled one study participant to become more customer focused...The learning curve is shortened and standards and best practices are established most effectively when organizations invest in a small number of people dedicated to accelerating adoption and ensuring consistent application of social platforms...Adopting a repeatable innovation model in conjunction with an idea-management platform such as BrightIdea accelerates time to market. Santa Clara University Leavey School of Business professors Tammy L...It examined the impact of social media initiatives over the entire product-development lifecycle from ideation to testing and found the impact goes beyond open innovation and includes product strategy, product definition, and knowledge management...TCGen is an experienced based, management consulting firm specializing in product development and strategy. TCGen can help clients profit by assisting them with social strategies, predictive metrics, product development, product definition, and strategy. Our clients range from the largest high tech clients in North America to early stage startups in software, telecom, medical and consumer electronics. About the Leavey School of Business The Leavey School of Business at Santa Clara University began in 1923, and was one of the first business schools in the country to receive national accreditation. Its undergraduate business, MBA and Executive MBA programs are consistently ranked among the top in the nation. The curriculum at all levels emphasizes the leadership role of business in creating an ethical society as well as business responsibilities for social justice and sustainability in the global marketplace. The School opened its new $49 million building for undergraduate, graduate, and professional business education in Fall 2008.

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STATION CUTS LOOM
02/04/2011
San Jose Mercury News

Caltrain officials on Thursday proposed closing up to 16 stations in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties -- turning half the rail line's stops into ghost depots, stranding thousands of riders, and leaving several huge shopping and housing centers without their prized train stops next door.

The plans, unveiled at a Caltrain board meeting, come in addition to a fare hike and deep cuts first revealed last year, including eliminating all but weekday rush-hour service between San Francisco and San Jose.

Caltrain leaders said the station closures and service cuts will be necessary starting July 2 to survive a record $30.3 million deficit -- about one-third of Caltrain's operating budget -- unless they receive an influx of last-minute funding from outside sources, which they say is increasingly unlikely. The board does not expect to make a decision on the cuts until April.

"We have a very serious financial crisis looming," said CEO Mike Scanlon. "I think we've looked under every rock" for more money.

Officials said for the first time Thursday that they are considering a 25-cent increase to all one-way fares, with corresponding increases to day and monthly passes. That would follow a 25-cent-per-zone fare increase that took effect last month, which amounted to a 7.2 percent bump for the average rider.

Officials now propose terminating service at as many as seven of these 10 stations: Bayshore in Brisbane, South San Francisco, San Bruno, Burlingame, Hayward Park in San Mateo, Belmont, San Antonio in Mountain View, Lawrence in Sunnyvale, Santa Clara and College Park in San Jose.

Proposals released earlier included ending all service south of San Jose Diridon Station, which would eliminate six stations, from Tamien to Gilroy. And proposals to end weekend and special-event service would close three more stations: the Stanford University stop, which is used only during football games, and weekend-only stations at Atherton and Broadway in Burlingame.

Still, based on a recent outcry about the cuts, Scanlon said he is optimistic the agency can find long-term funding -- perhaps through a new regional tax -- to eventually reopen stations and resume full service.

City leaders said the closures would be a big blow to their local economies and limit the ways residents and workers get around. They also complained that they have built or are planning large developments around the stations specifically to take cars off the road.

San Mateo officials just approved two of the city's most ambitious commercial developments in memory next to the Hayward Park station, largely because they envisioned at least one-fifth of the workers riding the train. Mountain View leaders have endorsed a plan to build hundreds of apartment units and several shops next to the San Antonio station.

Meanwhile, the agency is building a new San Bruno station as part of a $147 million project, but under the proposal it would never open. Burlingame would lose service at its historic downtown depot, perhaps the city's most recognizable landmark. Santa Clara, one of only a few cities in the Bay Area with more than 200,000 residents and workers combined, would lose its only train station.

In all, the worst-case scenario calls for trains to serve just half of the rail line's 32 stops.

Caltrain riders reacted with dismay and fear that the proposed cuts will force them off the train.

"This is disastrous," said Jessica Jenkins of Redwood City, who is legally blind and cannot drive. "Caltrain is a vital resource for people with disabilities like me."

She rides the train frequently during noncommute times and at night for her work as a tutor and legal fellow at a nonprofit legal services organization.

"I understand that we are in a terrible economic situation in California," she said, "but budgetary decisions should not be made on the backs of the disabled and otherwise disadvantaged. I hope that the decision makers do everything they can to avoid these terrible service cuts."

Michelle Cook of San Jose and her husband ride Caltrain four days a week to their jobs at Stanford.

"If they were to do away with the College Park station, I would have to drive to Diridon to take trains to work at Stanford," she said. "If both College Park and Santa Clara were removed from the schedule, I would be very hard-pressed to take the train as often as we do now."

Closing College Park would also affect 175 students and faculty members who ride the train each day to Bellarmine College Preparatory.

Donna Johnston-Blair, who for 10 years has ridden the train from Palo Alto to her job teaching accounting at Santa Clara University, said she was distraught. "I love Caltrain," she said.

All the proposed cuts would be necessary to erase the deficit, and even that may not be enough, officials said.

The stations slated for closure were chosen because they are not used heavily, and several rush-hour trains skip them to save time. About 13 percent of the agency's 40,000 daily riders board at the stations proposed for closure. Officials have not yet estimated how many total riders they would lose from shuttering the stations.

Still, they serve thousands of commuters and casual riders, and the stations often represent an important link to nearby communities.

Belmont City Councilwoman Christine Wozniak said it would force many residents and workers in her city to abandon transit and hop in their cars.

"We have a lot of very loyal commuters who have really bent over backward to continue using public transit, specifically Caltrain, and this would be a huge problem for many of those people," said Burlingame Mayor Terry Nagel.

Contact Mike Rosenberg at 650-348-4324 or mrosenberg@bayareanewsgroup.com.

Copyright © 2011 San Jose Mercury News

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Train stops could be cut | View Clip
02/04/2011
Daily News, The

BY MIKE ROSENBERG AND GARY RICHARDS ◾ Caltrain proposes eliminating special-event and weekend service

Bay Area News Group

Caltrain officials on Thursday proposed closing as many as 16 stations in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties — turning half the rail line's stops into ghost depots, stranding thousands of riders, and leaving several huge shopping and housing centers without their prized train stops next door.

The plans, unveiled at a Caltrain board meeting, come in addition to a fare hike and deep cuts first revealed last year, including eliminating all but weekday rush-hour service between San Francisco

and San Jose. Caltrain leaders said the station closures and service cuts will be necessary starting July 2 to survive a record $30.3 million deficit — about one-third of Caltrain's operating budget — unless they receive an influx of last-minute funding from outside sources, which they say is increasingly unlikely. The board does not expect to make a decision on the cuts until April.

“We have a very serious financial crisis looming,” said CEO Mike Scanlon. “I think we've looked under every rock” for more money.

Officials said for the first time Thursday that they are considering a 25-cent increase to all one-way fares, with corresponding increases to day and monthly passes. That would follow a 25-cent-per-zone fare increase that took effect last month, which amounted to a 7.2 percent bump for the average rider.

Officials now propose terminating service at as many as seven of these 10 stations: Bayshore in Brisbane, South San Francisco, San Bruno, Burlingame, Hayward Park in San Mateo, Belmont, San Antonio in Mountain View, Lawrence in Sunnyvale, Santa Clara and College Park in San Jose.

CALTRAIN, page A5

Caltrain death

Trains stopped after Sunnyvale man, 52, fatally struck

PAGE A5

CALTRAIN

From page A1

Proposals released earlier included ending all service south of San Jose Diridon Station, which would eliminate six stations, from Tamien to Gilroy. And proposals to end weekend and special-event service would close three more stations: the Stanford University stop, which is used only during football games, and weekend-only stations at Atherton and Broadway in Burlingame. Still, based on a recent outcry about the cuts, Scanlon said he is optimistic the agency can find long-term funding — perhaps through a new regional tax — to eventually reopen stations and resume full service.

City leaders said the closures would be a big blow to their local economies and limit the ways residents and workers get around. They also complained that they have built or are planning large developments around the stations specifically to take cars off the road.

San Mateo officials just approved two of the city's most ambitious commercial developments in memory next to the Hayward Park station, largely because they envisioned at least one-fifth of the workers riding the train. Mountain View leaders have endorsed a plan to build hundreds of apartment units and several shops next to the San Antonio station.

Meanwhile, the agency is building a new San Bruno station as part of a $147 million project, but under the proposal it would never open. Burlingame would lose service at its historic downtown depot, perhaps the city's most recognizable landmark. Santa Clara, one of only a few cities in the Bay Area with more than 200,000 residents and workers combined, would lose its only train station.

In all, the worst-case scenario calls for trains to serve just half of the rail line's 32 stops.

Caltrain riders reacted with dismay and fear that the proposed cuts will force them off the train.

“This is disastrous,” said Jessica Jenkins of Redwood City, who is legally blind and cannot drive. “Caltrain is a vital resource for people with disabilities like me.”

She rides the train frequently during noncommute times and at night for her work as a tutor and legal fellow at a nonprofit legal services organization.

“I understand that we are in a terrible economic situation in California,” she said, “but budgetary decisions should not be made on the backs of the disabled and otherwise disadvantaged. I hope that the decision makers do everything they can to avoid these terrible service cuts.”

Michelle Cook of San Jose and her husband ride Caltrain four days a week to their jobs at Stanford.

“If they were to do away with the College Park station, I would have to drive to Diridon to take trains to work at Stanford,” she said. “If both College Park and Santa Clara were removed from the schedule, I would be very hard-pressed to take the train as often as we do now.”

Closing College Park would also affect 175 students and faculty members who ride the train each day to Bellarmine College Preparatory.

Donna Johnston-Blair, who for 10 years has ridden the train from Palo Alto to her job teaching accounting at Santa Clara University, said she was distraught. “I love Caltrain,” she said.

All the proposed cuts would be necessary to erase the deficit, and even that may not be enough, officials said.

The stations slated for closure were chosen because they are not used heavily, and several rush-hour trains skip them to save time. About 13 percent of the agency's 40,000 daily riders board at the stations proposed for closure. Officials have not yet estimated how many total riders they would lose from shuttering the stations.

Still, they serve thousands of commuters and casual riders, and the stations often represent an important link to nearby communities.

Belmont City Council Member Christine Wozniak said it would force many residents and workers in her city to abandon transit and hop in their cars. “We have a lot of very loyal commuters who have really bent over backward to continue using public transit, specifically Caltrain, and this would be a huge problem for many of those people,” Burlingame Mayor Terry Nagel said.

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Political Briefs
02/04/2011
Worcester Telegram & Gazette

Congressman Jim McGovern (D-Worcester) announced two personnel moves for his congressional staff in the Worcester District Office:

Kathleen Polanowicz, who previously served as district representative for McGovern, has been named district director. Polanowicz will oversee all operations and staff in McGovern's four district offices. In addition, she will continue to provide constituent services in the areas of municipal relations, federal grant support, and select casework. Polanowicz is the former chairman of the Board of Selectmen in Northboro and currently serves as the chairman of the Northboro Housing Authority. She is a founding member of the Northboro Housing Corporation and serves on the Northboro Community Preservation Committee. Polanowicz graduated from Marymount College with a bachelor's degree and Santa Clara University School of Law with a juris doctorate. Prior to joining Congressman McGovern, she was a practicing attorney, most recently as a trial attorney with the Naughton Law Office in Clinton. Polanowicz grew up in Worcester, and currently resides in Northboro with her husband, John, and their two children.

Copyright © 2011 Worcester Telegram & Gazette Corp.

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He's a star on Bay Area stages | View Clip
02/04/2011
Tri-Valley Herald

Back in college in Texas, Aldo Billingslea was a star on the football field, playing guard and tackle for the Austin College Kangaroos. Now he's one of the MVPs of the Bay Area theater scene.

A natural athlete, the brawny 6-foot-4-inch Texas native was expected to be good at sports, but no one saw his hunger for the stage coming. In fact his commitment to the theat-uh drew quite a bit of ribbing by the jock set.

"Whenever I screwed up a play the coach would yell 'Hey Billingslea, get your head out of "Hamlet!'," recalls the down-to-earth actor while rushing from his home in Santa Clara to rehearsals for "Collapse" at Berkeley's Aurora Theatre Company. "Everybody got a big kick out of that." Find things to do Restaurant listings Movie listings | Movie theaters Concert listings His passion for the pigskin didn't last, but the 45-year-old went on to devote his life to the theater, an arena in which he combines a nonstop work ethic, a magnetic stage presence and a deep sense of commitment to the craft.

''It's like August Wilson said in 'Joe Turner,' you've got to find your song," Billingslea says in his rich baritone. "This is mine. It's my calling in life. It's why I am on the planet. The theater is the place I feel most connected to the rest of humanity."

A veteran of the acclaimed Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Billingslea now spends most of his time as an associate professor at Santa Clara University. His specialties include assessing the impact seminal African-American playwrights have had on the arc of the American theater, from Lorraine Hansberry to Suzan-Lori Parks.

"As a teacher who wants to educate the whole person," he says, "I think it's important to give voice to individuals who have made major contributions to the art."

Unlike some academics, he knows how to make art accessible, and he sprinkles his conversations with "awesome" as well as "anon." He's no glory hog (he acts with little troupes as well as big ones) and he is a "serial commuter" (he knows exactly how many miles to Marin Theatre Company: 73). After "Collapse," he will direct "A Raisin in the Sun" at Mountain View's Pear Avenue Theatre. If he is not as well known as some actors, it's not because he doesn't deserve the attention.

He's "one of the Bay Area theater's greatest assets," says Robert Kelley, artistic director of TheatreWorks, where the actor is a regular. "An outstanding artist, yes, an inspiring teacher, certainly, but also a community leader of immense integrity and intense commitment. And he's a great guy besides."

"Aldo is so bright and committed to his work, and the theater in general, and he brings all that strength and assured confidence to every conversation, every insight and every role," says actor/director Michael Gene Sullivan of the San Francisco Mime Troupe. "The reason he isn't famous is that he wouldn't drop his academic commitment ".... It means that one of the finest actors of the past decade has spent too much time out of the limelight.

"That was the price of his commitment, and he has never to my knowledge regretted it."

That sense of balance may be the secret to his success. In fact, he almost signed up for Shakespeare Santa Cruz this summer but turned it down to spend time with his 12-year-old daughter Trinity. That way his wife, Renee, an artist, can log some time in the studio.

"It's a juggling act because we are both artists," he says. "For a long time when my daughter was small, my wife stayed home to be with her, so now it's time for me to do my part. Basically I am making deposits on hubby points because when I have a show to do, I make a lot of withdrawals."

One of the reasons he keeps busy is his versatility. The actor can skip from Shakespeare to hip-hop without missing a beat. In recent years he has garnered raves playing Othello (Marin Theatre Company), the Obama-like Harmond Wilks in "Radio Golf" (TheatreWorks) and the escaped slave Damascus in "Jesus Moonwalks the Mississippi" (San Francisco's Cutting Ball Theater).

In "Collapse," a new play inspired by the 2007 Mississippi River bridge tragedy in Minneapolis, playwright Allison Moore explores how people struggle to cope with chaos that spirals out beyond their control. He plays a comic fellow named Ted whom he describes as a "sex addict who's impotent."

"Aldo is primarily known for his dramatic roles, but what has impressed me over the years is his range," says Tom Ross, artistic director of the Aurora. "One of my joys in having Aldo appear here in 'Collapse' is that people are going to see what a funny guy Aldo can be. He is hilarious."

"I've never seen Aldo give anything but a luminous performance," Kelley says.

Billingslea is that rare actor who doesn't love to talk about himself, preferring to keep the spotlight on the work at hand. "If I do my job right, I serve the play and I serve the audience. It's really not about me."

In a field dominated by monster egos, his modesty stands out.

"He cares deeply about people, shares his feelings openly, is honest in all things, and has one of the greatest smiles I've ever met," Kelley says. "Aldo actually believes that theater is important in shaping our lives and our culture. You can't be around him for long without realizing that. It's something he communicates in word and deed day after day. His enthusiasm for making art rubs off on everyone he meets."

Indeed, when asked how rehearsals are going at the Aurora, Billingslea responds with characteristic glee: "The brother is stoked!"

Contact Karen D'Souza at 408-271-3772. Check out her theater reviews, features and blog at www.mercurynews.com/karen-dsouza.

'Collapse' By Allison Moore Through: March 6 Where: Aurora Theatre Company, 2081 Addison Street, BerkeleyTickets: $34-$55, 510-843-4822, www.auroratheatre.org

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How a Roadtrip in India Inspired Efficient Building Monitoring | View Clip
02/04/2011
Thomson Reuters - UK - Online

What started as a trip across India looking for energy and environmental innovations led to the creation of a energy efficiency platform that provides real-time access to energy use data.

"It's important that all of us be entrepreneurs," Alexis Ringwald, director of business development for Serious Materials, said during her presentation at the State of Green Business Forum in San Francisco.

Speaking about ways to source innovation, she stressed that it's important to be unconventional in sourcing innovation and to be creative.

Ringwald's previous company, Valance Energy, had developed the aforementioned energy monitoring tool and was acquired by Serious Materials, the maker of efficient windows, glass and other building products that launched the program as SeriousEnergy.

After graduating from Yale with a Fulbright Award, Ringwald spent the following three years in India, where she Alexis co-founded Valence with a team out of Santa Clara University, and watched as the smart grid increased in importance, and realized that smart buildings was a growing area.

Within that time, she planned a trip across the country, in electric cars and with a solar-powered rock band and Bollywood dancers, to document what innovations and solutions were happening in India. She ran across things like biogas digesters, people using banana leafs as plates and a maharajah that ran worm farms.

In talking to building facilities managers, Ringwald and her team found that the common complaints were that there is a lot of data coming out of buildings, but it's not in real time, it's not easy to share and it's not easy to get building systems to talk to one another.

What is now called the SeriousEnergy Manager is the system she helped develop. It monitors, analyzes and controls a building or a whole portfolio of locations and provides real-time data, which can be broken down in different time increments, so facilities managers can find hot spots in energy use.

Back when Valence launched the tool, it's first customers were two 10th grade students at Harker School in San Jose, who received a grant for using the tool. One thing that was immediately discovered was anomalies in energy use at night; things were turning on when they should not have been. That instant information led to repairs that cut down on wasted energy.

"The point is to empower people with information," Ringwald said.

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A new satellite sails high above the Earth | View Clip
02/04/2011
Grand Haven Tribune

A 10-pound satellite called NanoSail-D has unfurled a sail and is soaring in space about 400 miles above the surface of the Earth. NanoSail-D's primary mission is to "deploy a highly compact solar sail/boom system and validate de-orbit functionality," according to the published mission overview. NanoSail-D's sail isn't designed to sail the satellite to the stars; rather, its purpose of "validating de-orbit functionality" means that the sail is supposed to help the satellite dissipate energy and crash back into Earth's atmosphere in about 100 days. The sail, made of an aluminized space-age fabric, is about 10 square meters in area � a bit larger than the sail on a laser sailing dinghy. Launched by NASA on Nov. 19, 2010, from a launch pad on Kodiak Island, Alaska � aboard a larger host satellite called FASTSAT (a "bacronym" for Fast, Affordable, Science and Technology SATellite) � NanoSail-D was commanded to eject from its berth and unfurl its solar sail on Dec. 5, 2010. But inexplicably, when it was commanded to eject from FASTSAT, the blender-size microsatellite became stuck. The spring that was to push NanoSail-D from its housing didn't get the job done. Mission managers were disheartened � until Jan. 17, when surprisingly NanoSail-D sprung free. Three days later its sail deployed as planned and the mission was off and running. NanoSail-D is equipped with a low-power radio transmitter that operates on a frequency allotted to amateur radio operators. Powered by a small battery, the beacon sent telemetry packets what were received by amateur radio operators around the world and forwarded to mission control at Santa Clara University in Santa Clara, Calif. On-orbit mission control for the NanoSail-D mission is being provided by the students, staff and faculty of the Robotics Systems Laboratory at SCU. The beacon went silent on Jan. 21, when the battery went dead as expected. But people around the world are still making contact with NanoSail-D visually. In fact, NASA and the publishers of the website spaceweather.com are sponsoring a photo contest "to encourage photography of NanoSail-D, the first solar sail to circle Earth in low orbit," according the contest website nanosail.org. The rules go on to stipulate that cash prizes will be awarded to the first- ($500), second- ($200) and third-place ($100) photos � "judged by a NASA-appointed panel on the basis of beauty and technical merit." You can view predictions for catching a glimpse of NanoSail-D at a number of satellite-spotting websites: including spaceweather.com, heavens-above.com and calsky.org. While on average not as bright as the International Space Station, NanoSail-D can produce extremely bright flares if sunlight glints off its shiny sail just right. But don't procrastinate. NanoSail-D is expected to re-enter Earth's atmosphere in a fiery spectacle as early as April of this year. As the tiny spacecraft descends, it should, however, get brighter and brighter. More information about NanoSail-D is available online at nanosail.org. Doug Furton is a member of the physics faculty at GVSU. Send questions and suggestions to dgf@inbox.com. An archive of some of his "What's up" columns is available online at http://gegenschein.wordpress.com

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Lofgren dreams of reform for immigrant students in U.S. | View Clip
02/04/2011
Stanford Daily

U.S. Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren ‘70 spoke in front of a large crowd in Tresidder yesterday evening. Lofgren discussed her recent efforts to pass the DREAM Act through Congress and the challenges that the bill may face going forward.

The DREAM Act is an immigration reform bill that aims to provide a process through which immigrant students that came to the United States illegally as minors can achieve permanent resident status.

U.S. Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren '70 discussed efforts to pass the DREAM Act, which would enable illegal student immigrants to achieve permanent resident status under certain criteria. (KOR VANG/The Stanford Daily)

In the bill's current version, students qualify for permanent residency if they arrived in the U.S. before the age of 16, lived in the country for a minimum of five consecutive years, graduated from a U.S. high school and are “of good moral character.” These students could apply for a six-year “conditional” legal resident status.

At the end of this six-year period, they would be eligible to become permanent residents if they completed at least two years of higher education in the U.S. or served two years in the U.S. military.

Though the House of Representatives passed the bill last December, it was blocked by filibuster in the Senate.

Lofgren, the senior Democrat on the House Immigration Subcommittee and one of the bill's chief proponents, lamented the fact that the bill has not yet been enacted into law. She referred to the illegal immigrant students that the DREAM Act seeks to naturalize as “de facto Americans.”

“When I think about this bill not passing, I think about these young people who have done all the things they were supposed to do, who stayed in school and got good grades and played by the rules,” Lofgren said. “And now the country they grew up in is not theirs legally, and they have no prospects for the future.”

Throughout her speech, Lofgren strove to address misconceptions and arguments often put forth by opponents of the bill.

“It is common to hear horror stories about the negative impact that immigrants could have on our society, but if you look at the statistics, immigrants are more law-abiding in general,” she said. “They have higher rates of entrepreneurship, and they are more active in small business development than Americans born here.”

Lofgren was pessimistic about the bill's prospects in the immediate future, pointing to the Republican majority that took office in the House in January and that immigration has recently become a polarizing topic.

“This is one aspect of immigration reform on which we really should all agree, a bill whose roots are in fact bipartisan,” Lofgren said, adding that John McCain, among other Republicans, was a co-sponsor of the bill in 2001. He later withdrew his support in response to the changing political climate.

“There are some who feel this is a divisive issue that can be used for political advantage,” she said. “That is not helpful in terms of facilitating an honest political process.”

Yesterday's talk was organized by the Stanford Immigrant Rights Project (SIRP) and co-sponsored by a number of other student groups.

“I hope students were able to take away a comprehensive understanding of the complexities of immigration politics, but more importantly, a sense of urgency to learn more about the issue and take some action,” said Alexandra Salgado ‘11, a SIRP member.

Lofgren is currently serving her eighth term in the House of Representatives, representing California's 16th congressional district based in San Jose. She received a B.A. from Stanford University in 1970 and a J.D. from Santa Clara University in 1975.

“I speak about immigration from a personal perspective,” Lofgren said. “My grandfather was an immigrant who came here because he wanted to be free.

“I am in Congress today because we had a country that allowed a young man who just wanted a better life to join our nation. Unfortunately, that is not the state of our country today.”

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Comment: Is Google?s copying complaint hypocritical? | View Clip
02/04/2011
Australian Macworld

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google—fairly or not—usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate—Microsoft denies the charge—the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

“Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission,” said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

“Google's effort to ‘trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy,” Simpson said via e-mail.

In a blog post, Roughly Drafted Magazine publisher Daniel Eran Dilger sounded a similar note. “Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success,” he wrote.

“Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves,” he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

“Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances—YouTube, book search, news headlines—Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor,” said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this “clickthrough” data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. “They look for every opportunity to tweak each other,” he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via an exclusive article on the Search Engine Land blog, which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

“Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times,” said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where “there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features,” Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

“Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use,” Sterling said. “There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them.”

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

“I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future,” Reynolds said via e-mail.

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States hesitant about blocking enactment? - Senators introduce post-lawsuit bills - Repeal fails, 1099 goes to the House - Health Affairs: Churning to come | View Clip
02/04/2011
Politico - Online, The

STATES BLOCKING IMPLEMENTATION STARTING TO BACK OFF?— Republican state leaders are looking to temper some of the rhetoric we heard yesterday about standing in the way of implementing reform. Wisconsin AG Van Hollen crawled back his earlier statement about the state not having to set up reform, with a new statement saying that he'd “never claimed that … states can or should ignore the fact they will have to consider the practical implications.” A Walker spokesman told POLITICO only that the governor applauds the Vinson decision and that Walker wants free market exchanges.

--FLORIDA STATE OF PLAY— Gov. Rick Scott says his state needs to halt implementation immediately, but offered few details. When PULSE pressed for an answer on what an end to implementation would mean for the millions the state has already received in grants, all we got from a spokeswoman was this: “with ObamaCare ruled unconstitutional, we are working closely with state agencies to determine the ruling's impact on taxpayers and small business owners.”

(reporting contributions from David Nather)

Good Thursday morning. “You give PULSE a bad name.”

*** AN IMPORTANT MESSAGE FOR PULSE READERS: Beginning next week, the 6 a.m. version of Pulse will be available only to those who subscribe to POLITICO Pro. Non-subscribers will get a later edition of Pulse at 9 a.m. But if you need your health care news before breakfast – together with ahead-of-the-curve reporting from our best-in-the-business reporters; highly customizable alerts on the news that matters to you most; and an exclusive, subscriber-only Afternoon Pulse briefing from Health Care Editor Diane Webber – then you need POLITICO Pro. For subscription information, please call (703) 341-4600 or e-mail subscribe@politicopro.com ***

PULSE MINDMELD: FROM THE SENATE TO THE COURTS— PULSE is wondering when the health news is going to slow down. The Senate repeal vote a foregone conclusion, the health focus now turns back to the courts and the implications of Vinson's ruling. Some states say they kinda-sorta can skip implementation because of the ruling. Senate Republicans say the ruling is enough to stop implementation (see Sen. KBH's bill in item below). Democrats say Vinson might need to go back to Constitutional Law 101. DOJ is still weighing whether it needs to ask the 11th Circuit Court for a stay. And Sen. Bill Nelson of Florida wants SCOTUS to put everyone out of their misery and take up the case now. (See Florida item below)

--HUTCHISON TO INTRODUCE BILL TO BLOCK IMPLEMENTATION— Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison plans to introduce legislation today that would stop enactment of the law until the lawsuits are resolved.

--NELSON WANTS SCOTUS TO TAKE THE CASE NOW— He introduced a Senate resolution Wednesday that would ask the Supreme Court to take up the issue of the Constitutionality of the individual mandate soon. http://politi.co/fFsSfO

REPEAL VOTE FAILS, 1099 PASSES THE SENATE— The Republican repeal effort went down in the Senate Wednesday night, but a 1099 repeal bill finally passed the upper chamber. Republicans say the fight is far from over, but Democrats showed they can keep all members in line. The POLITICO story http://politi.co/fTGd9Q

The Stabenow 1099 amendment: 81-17. (Not voting on either amendment: Warner, Lieberman) (Dems who voted “no”: Sens. Akaka, Carper, Durbin, Franken, Gillibrand, Harkin, Inouye, Lautenberg, Leahy, Levin, Mikulski, Murray, Reed, Reid, Sanders, Schumer and Whitehouse.)

The McConnell repeal amendment: 47-51, along party lines. (Technically it was a vote to waive a budget point of order.)

** A message from BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company): BD applies its technologies and expertise to help governments and healthcare institutions prevent, detect, diagnose, manage and report infections. www.bd.com/preventinfection **

FIRST LOOK: MILLIONS WILL CHURN BETWEEN MEDICAID AND EXCHANGES— A Health Affairs study out today finds that millions of adults will “churn” between the two programs once the exchanges open in 2014, potentially causing disruptive fluctuations for the patients and programs. In the first 12 months, as many as 28 million adults could see their coverage disrupted. The February Health Affairs table of contents http://bit.ly/faCF0R

WHY FLORIDA RETURNED A GRANT— The backstory on why the state insurance department declined its $1 million rate review on Tuesday: It actually had more to do with the showdown between HHS and former Connecticut Insurance Commissioner Thomas Sullivan than with this week's court ruling, the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation told us. After HHS went after Sullivan for approving some large rate hikes, insurance commissioner Kevin McCarty got cold feet over participating in the grant program. They had already been holding a series of meetings on the issue when the Vinson ruling came down, which “solidified” their decision that they would pull out, spokeswoman Brittany Perez tells us. The POLITICO story http://politi.co/fFsSfO

NOTHING TO SEE HERE, MOVE ALONG— Senate Democrats didn't back down an inch at Wednesday's Judiciary Committee hearing on the constitutionality of the individual mandate. It's totally constitutional, they said. And besides, there will be no health care for sick people or small businesses if it falls. Sen. Dick Durbin, who chaired the hearing, insists the mandate is not just legally sound, but politically sustainable. “The majority of Americans believe that people have a responsibility to have health insurance” because otherwise they're paying for other people's health care, Durbin told POLITICO after the hearing. “The political sentiment is on our side.” Georgetown's Randy Barnett, however, warned that the committee that the Supremes will probably strike it down, so “you might want to consider constitutional alternatives to the mandate sooner rather than later.”

WASH. STATE MOVES FORWARD ON EXCHANGES— A Washington State Senate committee will take up today legislation to establish a health exchange in the Evergreen State. The legislation would establish a 7-person board to oversee “implementation of planning and establishment grants received by the authority pursuant to the Affordable Care Act.” Legislation http://bit.ly/ig0mT9

VIRGINIA CASES JUMP TO HEAD OF THE PACK— The Fourth Circuit Court cases (Virginia AG Cuccinelli and Liberty University) have essentially jumped to the head of the timeline of the reform lawsuits, Santa Clara University law professor Bran Joondeph writes at the ACA Litigation blog. The Thomas More Case was previously first in the timeline, but the soonest it could be heard by the Sixth Circuit appears to be May 30 to June 10. Of course, all of these hearing dates – and the appeal of the Florida case – could change. The ACA blog post http://bit.ly/fZJjP8

GILLIBRAND, BLUMENTHAL RALLY AGAINST ABORTION LEGISLATION— The Senators pushed back against the Smith and Pence bills in the House, both aimed at restricting abortion, urging their colleagues to stand firm against the legislation. “We must work together to stop these bills in their tracks, as they represent an unprecedented effort to restrict women's access to reproductive health care and to their trusted health care providers,” they wrote in a letter sent late Tuesday. While the bills would likely survive a House vote, the Senate would pose a larger (albeit not insurmountable) hurdle. By NARAL's count, the Senate has 46 who oppose abortion, 40 who support access and 14 who have a mixed records. If Senators who opposed abortion joined force with those who have a mixed record, it could potentially create a filibuster proof, 60-Senator majority. Letter http://politi.co/ffdrSd

UPTON WANTS CER DETAILS— The Energy and Commerce chairman wants to know how HHS is spending $400 million in stimulus money for comparative effectiveness research. Upton also wants an explanation about how the Obama administration is spending $1 billion to implement the health reform law, money the Michigan Republican calls a “slush fund,” Brett Coughlin reports. The POLITICO story http://politi.co/fpIF0E

HAPPENING TODAY— The National Academy for State Health Policy hosts a briefing at the Reserve Officer's Association on upcoming challenges in enrollment.

BEST PRESS RELEASE LINE AFTER THE VOTE— AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka: “Republicans celebrated Groundhog Day by once again popping their heads up and rehashing old health care battles.”

QUOTE OF THE DAY— Former Solicitor General Charles Fried was asked in the Judiciary Committee hearing if Congress could do something to ensure the constitutionality of the individual mandate. “I see no need for it because it seems so clearly constitutional. … If you're wearing a belt, maybe you want to put on some suspenders too.” (Hat tip: Emily Walker of MedPage Today http://bit.ly/hd5YMG )

WHAT WE'RE READING

How Senate health repeal played:

The NYT: Senate rejects repeal of health care law http://nyti.ms/egNiIW

The WaPo: Senate rejects repeal of health-care law as fight shifts to courts http://wapo.st/gh4kV9

The WSJ: Senate votes down health-care repeal http://on.wsj.com/hQBOOO (Subscription required.)

Bloomberg: Senate Democrats block Republican bid to repeal health law http://bit.ly/hDfjNy

NYT's Robert Pear catches up with an issue PULSE has been following since day 1, birth control as an essential benefit. http://nyti.ms/fNnui8

Karl Rove's take on the week's health news in a WSJ opinion piece. http://on.wsj.com/e3NwKb

Vinson's decision not to issue an injunction against implementing health reform really just tied the court's hands, David Engstrom writes for CNN. http://bit.ly/gxThvK

Sen. Ben Nelson says improve the reform law, don't repeal it, the Lincoln Journal Star reports. http://bit.ly/enF4Os

The 1988 Medicare Catastrophic Care Act and its repeal is something cited in the current debate. Advisory Board's Dan Diamond recounts its history. http://bit.ly/hTHjIM

The Durbin Judiciary Committee hearing over the constitutionality of health reform had the reverse impact it intended: It legitimized the debate over whether the law is legal, Kate Pickert writes for Time. http://bit.ly/ibmjrw

** A message from BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company): Headquartered in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey, BD was founded in 1897 and has grown into a leading global medical technology company with more than 29,000 associates in 50 countries. The Company applies its technologies and expertise to address fundamental healthcare needs, and its products are found in healthcare settings all over the world. BD's capabilities help combat significant diseases worldwide by improving drug delivery, enhancing the quality and speed of infection diagnosis, and advancing research, discovery and production of new drugs and vaccines. It serves healthcare institutions, life sciences researchers, clinical laboratories, the pharmaceutical industry and the general public in pursuit of its purpose, “Helping all people live healthy lives.”

To learn more, go to www.bd.com/preventinfection **

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Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? | View Clip
02/03/2011
Macworld - Online

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google—fairly or not—usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate—Microsoft denies the charge—the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

“Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission,” said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

“Google's effort to ‘trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy,” Simpson said via e-mail. In a blog post, . “Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success,” he wrote.

“Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves,” he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

“Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances—YouTube, book search, news headlines—Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor,” said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this “clickthrough” data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. “They look for every opportunity to tweak each other,” he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via , which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

“Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times,” said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where “there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features,” Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

“Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use,” Sterling said. “There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them.”

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

“I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future,” Reynolds said via e-mail.

Return to Top



Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? | View Clip
02/03/2011
Computerworld Hungary

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate -- Microsoft denies the charge -- the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said via e-mail.

In a blog post, Roughly Drafted Magazine publisher Daniel Eran Dilger sounded a similar note. "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances -- YouTube, book search, news headlines -- Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via an exclusive article on the Search Engine Land blog, which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said via e-mail.

Return to Top



Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? | View Clip
02/03/2011
PC Advisor

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorised copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google - fairly or not - usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It made its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate - Microsoft denies the charge - the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyse competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said.

In a blog post, Roughly Drafted Magazine publisher Daniel Eran Dilger sounded a similar note. "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances - YouTube, book search, news headlines - Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via an exclusive article on the Search Engine Land blog, which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said.

Return to Top



Is Google's Copying Complaint Fair? | View Clip
02/03/2011
CIO India

Juan Carlos Perez IDG News Service (Miami Bureau)

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate -- Microsoft denies the charge -- the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said via e-mail.

In a blog post, Roughly Drafted Magazine publisher Daniel Eran Dilger sounded a similar note. "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances -- YouTube, book search, news headlines -- Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via an exclusive article on the Search Engine Land blog, which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said via e-mail.

Return to Top



Florida, Wisconsin threaten to halt implementation ... Senate repeal vote likely today ... Anti-abortion groups launch 'Expose Planned Parenthood' site ... Steve Larsen takes over CCIIO | View Clip
02/03/2011
Politico - Online, The

SIREN: FLORIDA, WISCONSIN THREATEN TO HALT IMPLEMENTATION – Florida Gov. Rick Scott has aggressively seized on Vinson's ruling, telling reporters he will not move forward with implementation. Scott in the Palm Beach Post: “We are not going to spend a lot of time and money with regard to trying to get ready to implement that until we know exactly what is going to happen.” Palm Beach Post story http://bit.ly/eTyMdG

MEANWHILE, IN WISCONSIN – Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen in a Tuesday p.m. statement: “Judge Vinson declared the health care law void and stated in his decision that a declaratory judgment is the functional equivalent of an injunction. This means that, for Wisconsin, the federal health care law is dead—unless and until it is revived by an appellate court. Effectively, Wisconsin was relieved of any obligations or duties that were created under terms of the federal health care law.”

--BUT HOW SERIOUS ARE THEY? Wis. Gov. Scott Walker's office declined to comment to PULSE on Van Hollen's statement. Previously though, Walker has indicated a willingness to work with HHS on reform. As he told us in an interview right before taking office: “If we can find a way to define our own reform, obviously within the realm of health care, and as long as [the federal government] doesn't restrict how we can do that, then I think we'd be inclined.” Walker also did not stop his state from applying for an Early Innovator Grant, nor did he mention blocking health reform in his State of the State address last night.

--LOOMING: COULD VINSON'S ORDER FORCE SCOTUS TO ACT MORE QUICKLY? If the DOJ decides it needs a stay order to legally implement the health reform law, the order could quickly work its way up to the Supreme Court, Santa Clara University law professor Bradley Joondeph writes. If the stay is needed, it could quickly be appealed to the 11th Circuit and possibly SCOTUS. Joondeph writes the ACA litigation blog. The post http://bit.ly/fsaQd3

(With reporting assists from the POLITICO health team: Brett Coughlin, Kate Nocera, Lester Feder and David Nather)

Good Wednesday Morning. “Dang me, dang me, ought to take a rope and hang me high form the highest tree—Pulse, would you weep for me?” (Hat tip: Politico health's J. Lester Feder, who you can now follow at @jlesterfeder. Special PULSE prize to the first person who can tell us what the “J” stands for.)

*** AN IMPORTANT MESSAGE FOR PULSE READERS: Beginning next week, the 6 a.m. version of Pulse will be available only to those who subscribe to POLITICO Pro. Non-subscribers will get a later edition of Pulse at 9 a.m. But if you need your health care news before breakfast – together with ahead-of-the-curve reporting from our best-in-the-business reporters; highly customizable alerts on the news that matters to you most; and an exclusive, subscriber-only Afternoon Pulse briefing from Health Care Editor Diane Webber – then you need POLITICO Pro. For subscription information, please call (703) 341-4600 or e-mail subscribe@politicopro.com ***

DRIVING THE DAY: SENATE REPEAL VOTE EXPECTED – The Senate is likely to vote on an amendment to repeal the health reform law today, but of course, it won't pass. In fact, no Democrats are likely to support it. Sen. Mitch McConnell introduced the amendment Tuesday and said he expects all 47 Republicans to support it. Majority Leader Harry Reid said he'll quickly move to get rid of the amendment, likely by calling a budget point of order – a procedural vote designed to highlight the fact that CBO says repeal would cost $230 billion. (So, technically, lawmakers will be voting on a procedural motion and not on health repeal itself. But in reality, it's a vote on repeal.) The POLITICO story http://politi.co/gXaMHw

--GRAHAM, BARRASSO INTRODUCE STATE OPT-OUT— Sen. Lindsey Graham and John Barrasso introduced their bill to allow states to opt-out of the individual mandate, employer mandate and Medicaid expansion on Tuesday. Graham said his goal in introducing the legislation is to take down the entire health reform law. “If you take half the states out of the individual mandate, this [health reform] bill falls,” he said. “Quite frankly, that's the goal.” The POLITICO story http://politi.co/hlvBwg

PULSE EXCLUSIVE: ANTI-ABORTION COALITION LAUNCHES “EXPOSE PLANNED PARENTHOOD” SITE – Led by SBA List, a new site goes live this morning with an “online activism center,” where activists can lobby members to support Pence's bill to strip Planned Parenthood of its Title X funding. A companion outreach campaign will ask activists to lobby members through e-mails, letters to the editor and letters to local Congressional offices. The POLITICO story http://politi.co/fY4zqz The site http://bit.ly/hvWChK

** A message from BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company): BD applies its technologies and expertise to help governments and healthcare institutions prevent, detect, diagnose, manage and report infections. www.bd.com/preventinfection **

SHOULDN'T REPUBLICANS LOVE THE MANDATE? In a different context, the Republican Party might cheer one of the fundamental tenets of the health care law, a requirement that all Americans buy health insurance. It's just the sort of thing that would fit squarely within the GOP's bedrock principle of individual responsibility. Instead, Republicans have made the individual mandate the focus of their attacks on President Barack Obama's health care law. The story from POLITICO's David Nather: http://politi.co/fjhh42

DEPARLE SKIPS ACO EVENT… – Apologizing for Nancy-Ann DeParle's last-minute bailing on yesterday's ACO event at Brookings, Mark McClellan said she would “not be able to join us because of the urgent situation in the Middle East and other matters related to her new position as deputy chief of staff.” The White House did not respond to PULSE's request for information about what other non-health care matters are now in her portfolio.

…BUT BERWICK SPEAKS – Before a packed House of policy wonks, providers and reporters at Brookings, the oft-cloistered CMS chief talked about accountable care organizations. Yes, his then teenaged patient Kevin made an appearance, rhetorically speaking. Afterward, Berwick took a few questions, but didn't give much away in terms of the ACO rule. Read his speech here: http://politi.co/e0TYm9

ICYMI: STEVE LARSEN TAKES OVER CCIIO – Sebelius tapped Larsen, up until now CCIIO's director of the Division of Insurance, to head up the entire agency. A former insurance commissioner in Maryland, Larsen was heavily involved in work in the medical loss ratio regulation. The change, an HHS source tells us, is effective immediately. The POLITICO story http://politi.co/hLvM0p

SCOOPLET: ILLINOIS REFORM REPORT DELAYED – Although the Illinois Health Reform Implementation Council promised to deliver by the end of January, the recommendations still have not been finalized, a well-placed source tells us. They're aiming to get the report out today.

BIZ LOBBIES FOR FSA ACCOUNTS – Kaiser Health News' Jordan Rau on POLITICO today: Some of the largest of the 500 companies that administer FSAs, as well as drug makers and business groups, are organizing and funding the drive to change the law, which they say may reduce the number of people using these accounts. The KHN/POLITICO story http://politi.co/hYqfgW

OUT TODAY: COMMONWEALTH RANKS STATES BY CHILDREN'S HEALTH – Iowa tops the group's regular look at how the health care system serves the under 18 population. Study http://bit.ly/f1Ik4X

--ALSO THIS MORNING: HHS, MICROSOFT ANNOUNCE NEW PARTNERSHIP – HHS and Microsoft will announce today a new encrypted messaging application, that uses Microsoft Health Vault and allows clinicians to send e-mail messages and clinical information to patients in a safe, secure format. Full announcement from HHS at noon today.

AMA RELEASES DATA ON (NON)-COMPETITIVENESS IN INSURANCE INDUSTRY – Study released yesterday found that in 60 percent of metropolitan areas, the two largest insurers dominated 70 percent of the market. And in 18 percent of cities, at least one insurer controlled 70 percent or more of the market.

--AHIP SAYS: NOT QUITE – “Competition is vigorous among health plans across the country,” AHIP's Robert Zirkelbach pushes back. “They operate in highly competitive markets in which consumers have numerous choices among plan types and insurers. Moreover, research examining competition in health care markets increasingly points to provider consolidation as a significant factor contributing to rising health care costs.” He also points out that a HealthCare.Gov search will bring up multiple options for the vast majority of consumers.

HAPPENING TODAY: JUDICIARY HEARING ON HEALTH LAW – Sen. Dick Durbin is chairing a Judiciary Committee hearing today on the constitutionality of the health reform law, days after Vinson's ruling in Florida. Durbin plans to argue that the bill is constitutional and that the legal challenges to reform are driven by partisan opposition to the law, according to his office. Witnesses include: Oregon AG John Kroger; Georgetown's Randy Barnett; Jones Day's Michael Carvin; Walter Dellinger of Duke and a former solicitor general; Charles Fried of Harvard and a former solicitor general.

--A GOP aide raises the question: If pro-reform folks continually say we ought not relitigate the health care law and are critical when House committees do so, then why is it OK for Democrats to hold hearings on the law?

ALSO TODAY – AdvaMed board chairman James V. Mazzo and CEO Steve Ubl will meet with reporters to address major issues facing the medical device industry in 2011. Expect to hear about: ACOs, the Korea Free Trade Agreement, 510(k) FDA recommendations and the medical device tax.

-- National HIT Coordinator David Blumenthal and White House Chief Technology Officer Aneesh Chopra will announce the launch of pilots in Rhode Island and Minnesota “to demonstrate secure, direct electronic health information exchange.”

QUOTE OF THE DAY – “Girl, you've got to have it” – what Sen. Dick Durbin told his then-post-college-aged daughter when she told him she didn't need to worry about health insurance. He made the comments on the Senate floor Tuesday.

WHAT WE'RE READING

New York Governor Cuomo proposes freezing Medicaid spending, Jacob Gershman of the Wall Street Journal reports. http://on.wsj.com/i58YgM

Actavis Mid-Atlantic LLC was ordered to pay $170 million in a Medicaid fraud case, the Austin American-Statesman reports. http://bit.ly/hEaEo6

South Carolina's Medicaid director told the state's legislature that without an infusion of $228 million “hundreds of thousands of poor, disabled and elderly” may be cut from the program, the Charleston Post-Courier reports. http://bit.ly/fRAXfY

For-profit hospice companies less likely than not-for-profits to enroll costly cancer patients, Bloomberg reports citing a JAMA analysis. http://bloom.bg/e7IA6s

The cancer drug Avastin may cause higher rates of life-threatening side effects, the Wall Street Journal – also citing JAMA – reports. http://on.wsj.com/ea2Oun

The New York Times and bloggers read the tea leaves in a Florida judge's ruling. http://nyti.ms/gS1ZEU

Pfizer eliminates 1,100 jobs in Connecticut as profits soar, the Hartford Courant reports. http://bit.ly/gcA9dK

** A message from BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company): Headquartered in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey, BD was founded in 1897 and has grown into a leading global medical technology company with more than 29,000 associates in 50 countries. The Company applies its technologies and expertise to address fundamental healthcare needs, and its products are found in healthcare settings all over the world. BD's capabilities help combat significant diseases worldwide by improving drug delivery, enhancing the quality and speed of infection diagnosis, and advancing research, discovery and production of new drugs and vaccines. It serves healthcare institutions, life sciences researchers, clinical laboratories, the pharmaceutical industry and the general public in pursuit of its purpose, “Helping all people live healthy lives.”

To learn more, go to www.bd.com/preventinfection **

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Google and Microsoft search engine spat | View Clip
02/03/2011
Computerworld UK

Is Google a victim or a hypocrite?

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorised copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google fairly or not usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

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CompTIA creates council to address decline of women in ITNational Center for Women & IT says 25% of US IT pros in 2009 were women, down from 36% eight years earlier >>

Sony profits hit by falling TV pricesStiff price competition in the flat-screen TV market and the strong Japanese yen hurt profits at Sony >>

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

Hypocritical?

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate, Microsoft denies the charge, the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers. Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyse competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said.

Google the copycat

In a blog post, Roughly Drafted Magazine publisher Daniel Eran Dilger sounded a similar note. "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances, YouTube, book search, news headlines, Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realises that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Controversy erupts

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via an exclusive article on the Search Engine Land blog, which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitising and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorised use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story. IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said.

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Is Google's Copying Complaint Fair or Hypocritical? | View Clip
02/03/2011
Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights, The

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain...

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate -- Microsoft denies the charge -- the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said via e-mail.

In a blog post, Roughly Drafted Magazine publisher Daniel Eran Dilger sounded a similar note. "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances -- YouTube, book search, news headlines -- Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via an exclusive article on the Search Engine Land blog, which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said via e-mail.

Return to Top



Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? | View Clip
02/03/2011
Computerworld Philippines

By Juan Carlos Perez
IDG News Service (Miami Bureau)
February 4, 2011

MIAMI - When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google — fairly or not — usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate — Microsoft denies the charge — the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

“Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission,” said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

“Google's effort to ‘trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy,” Simpson said via e-mail.

In a blog post, Roughly Drafted Magazine publisher Daniel Eran Dilger sounded a similar note. “Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success,” he wrote.

“Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves,” he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

“Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances — YouTube, book search, news headlines — Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor,” said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this “clickthrough” data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. “They look for every opportunity to tweak each other,” he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via an exclusive article on the Search Engine Land blog, which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

“Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times,” said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where “there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features,” Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

“Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use,” Sterling said. “There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them.”

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

“I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future,” Reynolds said via e-mail.

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TOWERING PRESENCE
02/03/2011
San Jose Mercury News

Back in college in Texas, Aldo Billingslea was a star on the football field, playing guard and tackle for the Austin College Kangaroos. Now he's one of the MVPs of the Bay Area theater scene.

A natural athlete, the brawny 6-foot-4-inch Texas native was expected to be good at sports, but no one saw his hunger for the stage coming. In fact his commitment to the theat-uh drew quite a bit of ribbing by the jock set.

"Whenever I screwed up a play the coach would yell 'Hey Billingslea, get your head out of "Hamlet!"'," recalls the down-to-earth actor while rushing from his home in Santa Clara to rehearsals for "Collapse" at Berkeley's Aurora Theatre Company. "Everybody got a big kick out of that."

His passion for the pigskin didn't last, but the 45-year-old went on to devote his life to the theater, an arena in which he combines a nonstop work ethic, a magnetic stage presence and a deep sense of commitment to the craft.

"It's like August Wilson said in 'Joe Turner,' you've got to find your song," Billingslea says in his rich baritone. "This is mine. It's my calling in life. It's why I am on the planet. The theater is the place I feel most connected to the rest of humanity."

A veteran of the acclaimed Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Billingslea now spends most of his time as an associate professor at Santa Clara University. His specialties include assessing the impact seminal African-American playwrights have had on the arc of the American theater, from Lorraine Hansberry to Suzan-Lori Parks.

"As a teacher who wants to educate the whole person," he says, "I think it's important to give voice to individuals who have made major contributions to the art."

Unlike some academics, he knows how to make art accessible, and he sprinkles his conversations with "awesome" as well as "anon." He's no glory hog (he acts with little troupes as well as big ones) and he is a "serial commuter" (he knows exactly how many miles to Marin Theatre Company: 73). After "Collapse," he will direct "A Raisin in the Sun" at Mountain View's Pear Avenue Theatre. If he is not as well known as some actors, it's not because he doesn't deserve the attention.

He's "one of the Bay Area theater's greatest assets," says Robert Kelley, artistic director of TheatreWorks, where the actor is a regular. "An outstanding artist, yes, an inspiring teacher, certainly, but also a community leader of immense integrity and intense commitment. And he's a great guy besides."

"Aldo is so bright and committed to his work, and the theater in general, and he brings all that strength and assured confidence to every conversation, every insight and every role," says actor/director Michael Gene Sullivan of the San Francisco Mime Troupe. "The reason he isn't famous is that he wouldn't drop his academic commitment .... It means that one of the finest actors of the past decade has spent too much time out of the limelight.

"That was the price of his commitment, and he has never to my knowledge regretted it."

That sense of balance may be the secret to his success. In fact, he almost signed up for Shakespeare Santa Cruz this summer but turned it down to spend time with his 12-year-old daughter Trinity. That way his wife, Renee, an artist, can log some time in the studio.

"It's a juggling act because we are both artists," he says. "For a long time when my daughter was small, my wife stayed home to be with her, so now it's time for me to do my part. Basically I am making deposits on hubby points because when I have a show to do, I make a lot of withdrawals."

One of the reasons he keeps busy is his versatility. The actor can skip from Shakespeare to hip-hop without missing a beat. In recent years he has garnered raves playing Othello (Marin Theatre Company), the Obama-like Harmond Wilks in "Radio Golf" (TheatreWorks) and the escaped slave Damascus in "Jesus Moonwalks the Mississippi" (San Francisco's Cutting Ball Theater).

In "Collapse," a new play inspired by the 2007 Mississippi River bridge tragedy in Minneapolis, playwright Allison Moore explores how people struggle to cope with chaos that spirals out beyond their control. He plays a comic fellow named Ted whom he describes as a "sex addict who's impotent."

"Aldo is primarily known for his dramatic roles, but what has impressed me over the years is his range," says Tom Ross, artistic director of the Aurora. "One of my joys in having Aldo appear here in 'Collapse' is that people are going to see what a funny guy Aldo can be. He is hilarious."

"I've never seen Aldo give anything but a luminous performance," Kelley says.

Billingslea is that rare actor who doesn't love to talk about himself, preferring to keep the spotlight on the work at hand. "If I do my job right, I serve the play and I serve the audience. It's really not about me."

In a field dominated by monster egos, his modesty stands out.

"He cares deeply about people, shares his feelings openly, is honest in all things, and has one of the greatest smiles I've ever met," Kelley says. "Aldo actually believes that theater is important in shaping our lives and our culture. You can't be around him for long without realizing that. It's something he communicates in word and deed day after day. His enthusiasm for making art rubs off on everyone he meets."

Indeed, when asked how rehearsals are going at the Aurora, Billingslea responds with characteristic glee: "The brother is stoked!"

Contact Karen D'Souza at 408-271-3772. Check out her theater reviews, features and blog at www.mercurynews.com/karen-dsouza.

Copyright © 2011 San Jose Mercury News

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Aldo Billingslea is a major player in Bay Area theater scene | View Clip
02/03/2011
Santa Cruz Sentinel - Online

Actors Carrie Paff, left, and Aldo Billingslea, right, during a scene of the play "Collapse," inspired by the 2007 Mississippi River Bridge Collapse in Minnesota at the Aurora Theatre in Berkeley, Calif., on Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2011. Billingslea has become a favorite among Bay Area theater fans, with a string of strong performances at a variety of theater companies.(Doug Duran/Staff)

Back in college in Texas, Aldo Billingslea was a star on the football field, playing guard and tackle for the Austin College Kangaroos. Now he's one of the MVPs of the Bay Area theater scene.

A natural athlete, the brawny 6-foot-4-inch Texas native was expected to be good at sports, but no one saw his hunger for the stage coming. In fact his commitment to the theat-uh drew quite a bit of ribbing by the jock set.

"Whenever I screwed up a play the coach would yell 'Hey Billingslea, get your head out of "Hamlet!—‰'," recalls the down-to-earth actor while rushing from his home in Santa Clara to rehearsals for "Collapse" at Berkeley's Aurora Theatre Company. "Everybody got a big kick out of that."

Find things to do

His passion for the pigskin didn't last, but the 45-year-old went on to devote his life to the theater, an arena in which he combines a nonstop work ethic, a magnetic stage presence and a deep sense of commitment to the craft.

''It's like August Wilson said in 'Joe Turner,' you've got to find your song," Billingslea says in his rich baritone. "This is mine. It's my calling in life. It's why I am on the planet. The theater is the place I feel most connected to the rest of humanity."

A veteran of the acclaimed Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Billingslea now spends most of his time as an associate professor at Santa Clara University. His specialties include assessing the impact seminal African-American playwrights have had on

the arc of the American theater, from Lorraine Hansberry to Suzan-Lori Parks.

"As a teacher who wants to educate the whole person," he says, "I think it's important to give voice to individuals who have made major contributions to the art."

Unlike some academics, he knows how to make art accessible, and he sprinkles his conversations with "awesome" as well as "anon." He's no glory hog (he acts with little troupes as well as big ones) and he is a "serial commuter" (he knows exactly how many miles to Marin Theatre Company: 73). After "Collapse," he will direct "A Raisin in the Sun" at Mountain View's Pear Avenue Theatre. If he is not as well known as some actors, it's not because he doesn't deserve the attention.

He's "one of the Bay Area theater's greatest assets," says Robert Kelley, artistic director of TheatreWorks, where the actor is a regular. "An outstanding artist, yes, an inspiring teacher, certainly, but also a community leader of immense integrity and intense commitment. And he's a great guy besides."

"Aldo is so bright and committed to his work, and the theater in general, and he brings all that strength and assured confidence to every conversation, every insight and every role," says actor/director Michael Gene Sullivan of the San Francisco Mime Troupe. "The reason he isn't famous is that he wouldn't drop his academic commitment ".... It means that one of the finest actors of the past decade has spent too much time out of the limelight.

"That was the price of his commitment, and he has never to my knowledge regretted it."

That sense of balance may be the secret to his success. In fact, he almost signed up for Shakespeare Santa Cruz this summer but turned it down to spend time with his 12-year-old daughter Trinity. That way his wife, Renee, an artist, can log some time in the studio.

"It's a juggling act because we are both artists," he says. "For a long time when my daughter was small, my wife stayed home to be with her, so now it's time for me to do my part. Basically I am making deposits on hubby points because when I have a show to do, I make a lot of withdrawals."

One of the reasons he keeps busy is his versatility. The actor can skip from Shakespeare to hip-hop without missing a beat. In recent years he has garnered raves playing Othello (Marin Theatre Company), the Obama-like Harmond Wilks in "Radio Golf" (TheatreWorks) and the escaped slave Damascus in "Jesus Moonwalks the Mississippi" (San Francisco's Cutting Ball Theater).

In "Collapse," a new play inspired by the 2007 Mississippi River bridge tragedy in Minneapolis, playwright Allison Moore explores how people struggle to cope with chaos that spirals out beyond their control. He plays a comic fellow named Ted whom he describes as a "sex addict who's impotent."

"Aldo is primarily known for his dramatic roles, but what has impressed me over the years is his range," says Tom Ross, artistic director of the Aurora. "One of my joys in having Aldo appear here in 'Collapse' is that people are going to see what a funny guy Aldo can be. He is hilarious."

"I've never seen Aldo give anything but a luminous performance," Kelley says.

Billingslea is that rare actor who doesn't love to talk about himself, preferring to keep the spotlight on the work at hand. "If I do my job right, I serve the play and I serve the audience. It's really not about me."

In a field dominated by monster egos, his modesty stands out.

"He cares deeply about people, shares his feelings openly, is honest in all things, and has one of the greatest smiles I've ever met," Kelley says. "Aldo actually believes that theater is important in shaping our lives and our culture. You can't be around him for long without realizing that. It's something he communicates in word and deed day after day. His enthusiasm for making art rubs off on everyone he meets."

Indeed, when asked how rehearsals are going at the Aurora, Billingslea responds with characteristic glee: "The brother is stoked!"

Contact Karen D'Souza at 408-271-3772. Check out her theater reviews, features and blog at www.mercurynews.com/karen-dsouza.

'Collapse'

Through: March 6

Where: Aurora Theatre Company, 2081 Addison Street, Berkeley

Tickets: $34-$55, 510-843-4822, www.auroratheatre.org

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5 Things You Didn't Know About Michael Trucco | View Clip
02/03/2011
Seattle Post-Intelligencer

Michael Trucco has locked lips with the comely likes of Battlestar Galactica

1. He suffered spinal injuries similar to Christopher Reeve's.

2. But he still rides motorcycles and races cars."I never want to position myself as a victim," says Trucco, who races "crap cars worth $500 or less" in an endurance series called the 24 Hours of Lemons.

3. His wife, Sandra Hess, was his costar.

5. He wanted to wear a badge for real.Trucco's dad was a cop and Trucco entered Santa Clara University as a criminal justice major. "Police work was fascinating and I didn't imagine that acting was something a kid from San Mateo, California, could really pursue," he says. Good thing the head of his school's drama department thought differently. View original at TVGuide.com

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Caltrain proposes shuttering half its stations
02/03/2011
Oakland Tribune

Caltrain officials on Thursday proposed closing up to 16 stations in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties -- turning half the rail line's stops into ghost depots, stranding thousands of riders, and leaving several huge shopping and housing centers without their prized train stops next door.

The plans, unveiled at a Caltrain board meeting, come in addition to a fare hike and deep cuts first revealed last year, including eliminating all but weekday rush-hour service between San Francisco and San Jose.

Caltrain leaders said the station closures and service cuts will be necessary starting July 2 to survive a record $30.3 million deficit -- about one-third of Caltrain's operating budget -- unless they receive an influx of last-minute funding from outside sources, which they say is increasingly unlikely. The board does not expect to make a decision on the cuts until April.

"We have a very serious financial crisis looming," said CEO Mike Scanlon. "I think we've looked under every rock" for more money.

Officials said for the first time Thursday that they are considering a 25-cent increase to all one-way fares, with corresponding increases to day and monthly passes. That would follow a 25-cent-per-zone fare increase that took effect last month, which amounted to a 7.2 percent bump for the average rider.

Officials now propose terminating service at as many as seven of these 10 stations: Bayshore in Brisbane, South San Francisco, San Bruno, Burlingame, Hayward Park in San Mateo, Belmont, San Antonio in Mountain View, Lawrence in Sunnyvale, Santa Clara and College Park in San Jose.

Proposals released earlier included ending all service south of San Jose Diridon Station, which would eliminate six stations, from Tamien to Gilroy. And proposals to end weekend and special-event service would close three more stations: the Stanford University stop, which is used only during football games, and weekend-only stations at Atherton and Broadway in Burlingame.

Still, based on a recent outcry about the cuts, Scanlon said he is optimistic the agency can find long-term funding -- perhaps through a new regional tax -- to eventually reopen stations and resume full service.

City leaders said the closures would be a big blow to their local economies and limit the ways residents and workers get around. They also complained that they have built or are planning large developments around the stations specifically to take cars off the road.

San Mateo officials just approved two of the city's most ambitious commercial developments in memory next to the Hayward Park station, largely because they envisioned at least one-fifth of the workers riding the train. Mountain View leaders have endorsed a plan to build hundreds of apartment units and several shops next to the San Antonio station.

Meanwhile, the agency is building a new San Bruno station as part of a $147 million project, but under the proposal it would never open. Burlingame would lose service at its historic downtown depot, perhaps the city's most recognizable landmark. Santa Clara, one of only a few cities in the Bay Area with more than 200,000 residents and workers combined, would lose its only train station.

In all, the worst-case scenario calls for trains to serve just half of the rail line's 32 stops.

Caltrain riders reacted with dismay and fear that the proposed cuts will force them off the train.

"This is disastrous," said Jessica Jenkins of Redwood City, who is legally blind and cannot drive. "Caltrain is a vital resource for people with disabilities like me."

She rides the train frequently during noncommute times and at night for her work as a tutor and legal fellow at a nonprofit legal services organization.

"I understand that we are in a terrible economic situation in California," she said, "but budgetary decisions should not be made on the backs of the disabled and otherwise disadvantaged. I hope that the decision makers do everything they can to avoid these terrible service cuts."

Michelle Cook of San Jose and her husband ride Caltrain four days a week to their jobs at Stanford.

"If they were to do away with the College Park station, I would have to drive to Diridon to take trains to work at Stanford," she said. "If both College Park and Santa Clara were removed from the schedule, I would be very hard-pressed to take the train as often as we do now."

Closing College Park would also affect 175 students and faculty members who ride the train each day to Bellarmine College Preparatory.

Donna Johnston-Blair, who for 10 years has ridden the train from Palo Alto to her job teaching accounting at Santa Clara University, said she was distraught. "I love Caltrain," she said.

All the proposed cuts would be necessary to erase the deficit, and even that may not be enough, officials said.

The stations slated for closure were chosen because they are not used heavily, and several rush-hour trains skip them to save time. About 13 percent of the agency's 40,000 daily riders board at the stations proposed for closure. Officials have not yet estimated how many total riders they would lose from shuttering the stations.

Still, they serve thousands of commuters and casual riders, and the stations often represent an important link to nearby communities.

Belmont City Councilwoman Christine Wozniak said it would force many residents and workers in her city to abandon transit and hop in their cars.

"We have a lot of very loyal commuters who have really bent over backward to continue using public transit, specifically Caltrain, and this would be a huge problem for many of those people," said Burlingame Mayor Terry Nagel.

Contact Mike Rosenberg at 650-348-4324 or .

Comment on Caltrain cuts

Attend a Caltrain-sponsored public meeting or contact it directly:

Feb. 14: San Jose City Hall at 7 p.m.

Feb. 16: San Francisco Muni headquarters at 6 p.m.

Feb. 17: Gilroy Senior Center at

6 p.m.

Feb. 17: Caltrain headquarters in San Carlos at 6 p.m.

March 3: Board meeting at Caltrain headquarters at

10 a.m.

E-mail .

Call 800-660-4287.

Source: Caltrain

Copyright © 2011 The Oakland Tribune. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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Redistricting commission picks Angelo Ancheta for vacant slot | View Clip
02/02/2011
Merced Sun-Star - Online

California's new redistricting commission was made whole Friday when Angelo Ancheta was chosen from six other Democratic candidates to replace a member who resigned earlier this month.

Ancheta, a San Francisco resident, is a professor at Santa Clara University School of Law. He has taught classes and conducted research in constitutional rights, voting rights and election law.

Ancheta will fill a seat left vacant by Democrat Elaine Kuo of Mountain View, who resigned Jan. 14.

Call The Bee's Jim Sanders, (916) 326-5538.

The Citizens Redistricting Commission is responsible for drawing legislative, congressional and Board of Equalization districts by Aug. 15.

The panel must consist of five Democrats, five Republicans, and four independent or minor-party voters.

With Ancheta's selection, the panel now consists of four Asian Americans, three Caucasians, three Hispanic or Latino members, two African Americans, one Pacific Islander, and one from the category of American Indian or Alaska native.

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Black History Month 2011: Bill Douglass | View Clip
02/02/2011
State Magazine

William H. Douglass was born in Washington, D.C., and is the great, great nephew of Frederick Douglass. He is the great, great grandson of Perry Douglass, Frederick's brother. Frederick Douglass met regularly with President Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War and recruited northern African Americans for the Union Army. After the war, Frederick Douglass worked tirelessly for women's rights and for the equality of African Americans.

Mr. Douglass began his career at the State Department in 2002 as a producer/contractor in the Bureau of Public Affairs' Office of Broadcast Services. He became a full-time State employee in 2005, working as a TV broadcast producer / technician with the Department's American Embassy Television Network, disseminating public affairs information via satellite television to U.S. posts.

From 2008 to 2010, he served as consular section chief for the US Embassy Freetown, Sierra Leone and reported to the Deputy Chief of Mission. Mr. Douglass supervised a staff consisting of one entry-level officer, one EFM and 7 locally engaged staff (LES) and responsible for all aspects of consular work, including American citizens services, fraud investigations, immigrant and diversity visa (IV/DV) operations and nonimmigrant visa operations. His tasks included the resumption of immigrant visa operation after a 12-year hiatus and instituting diversity visa operations at US Embassy Freetown.

Before coming to State, as a broadcast professional at Black Entertainment Television Network, he worked as assistant director for the television show AM@BET and Cita's World. Mr. Douglass has also served as an adjunct professor of philosophy at the Northern Virginia Community College, and at the Prince George's Community College. At both institutions, he designed and taught courses on introduction to philosophy and logic. Prior to that, as a Jesuit Scholastic-Seminarian in the California Province of the Society of Jesus, he chaired departments at Cardinal Hayes High School in New York City and at Verbum Dei High School in Los Angeles.

Mr. Douglass holds a bachelor of arts degree in communication/TV production and English from Santa Clara University, in Santa Clara, California. From Fordham University, in New York City, he earned a master of arts degree in philosophy. William Douglass has obtained an intermediate working knowledge of the Spanish language and the Krio language (Sierra Leone).

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Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? | View Clip
02/02/2011
Computerworld Australia

Analysts are split on whether Google will be helped or harmed by accusing Microsoft of copying its search results

Juan Carlos Perez (IDG News Service)

Tags | search engines | Microsoft | internet | Google

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate -- Microsoft denies the charge -- the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said via e-mail.

In a blog post, Roughly Drafted Magazine publisher Daniel Eran Dilger sounded a similar note. "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances -- YouTube, book search, news headlines -- Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via an exclusive article on the Search Engine Land blog, which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said via e-mail.

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News: Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? | View Clip
02/02/2011
Australian PC World

Analysts are split on whether Google will be helped or harmed by accusing Microsoft of copying its search results

Juan Carlos Perez (IDG News Service)

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When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate -- Microsoft denies the charge -- the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said via e-mail.

In a blog post, Roughly Drafted Magazine publisher Daniel Eran Dilger sounded a similar note. "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances -- YouTube, book search, news headlines -- Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via an exclusive article on the Search Engine Land blog, which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said via e-mail.

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Analysis: Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? | View Clip
02/02/2011
Computerworld New Zealand

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorised copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate -- Microsoft denies the charge -- the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt. "Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said. "Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said via e-mail. In a blog post, . "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote. "Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added. Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident. "Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances -- YouTube, book search, news headlines -- Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data. Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via , which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com. "Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said. In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations. "Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them." Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm. "I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said via email. Juan Carlos Perez looks into the spat between Microsoft and Google

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Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? | View Clip
02/02/2011
ARN - Online

Analysts are split on whether Google will be helped or harmed by accusing Microsoft of copying its search results

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate -- Microsoft denies the charge -- the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said via e-mail.

In a blog post, Roughly Drafted Magazine publisher Daniel Eran Dilger sounded a similar note. "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances -- YouTube, book search, news headlines -- Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via an exclusive article on the Search Engine Land blog, which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said via e-mail.

Return to Top



Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? | View Clip
02/02/2011
Computerworld Norge

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate -- Microsoft denies the charge -- the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said via e-mail. In a blog post, . "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances -- YouTube, book search, news headlines -- Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via , which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said via e-mail.

Return to Top



Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? | View Clip
02/02/2011
Computerworld Norge

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate -- Microsoft denies the charge -- the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said via e-mail. In a blog post, . "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances -- YouTube, book search, news headlines -- Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via , which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said via e-mail.

Return to Top



Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? | View Clip
02/02/2011
Tech World Australia

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate -- Microsoft denies the charge -- the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said via e-mail. In a blog post, . "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances -- YouTube, book search, news headlines -- Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via , which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said via e-mail.

Return to Top



Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? | View Clip
02/02/2011
Good Gear Guide

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate -- Microsoft denies the charge -- the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said via e-mail. In a blog post, . "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances -- YouTube, book search, news headlines -- Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via , which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said via e-mail.

Return to Top



Is Google's Copying Complaint Fair or Hypocritical? | View Clip
02/02/2011
PC World - Online

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate -- Microsoft denies the charge -- the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said via e-mail. In a blog post, . "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances -- YouTube, book search, news headlines -- Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via , which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said via e-mail.

Return to Top



Is Google's copying complaint fair or hypocritical? | View Clip
02/02/2011
CIO Australia

When involved in a spat over allegations of unauthorized copying or misappropriation of content and ideas, Google -- fairly or not -- usually plays the villain, accused of parasitically overstepping boundaries to profit from someone else's work.

It's been accused of that many times informally. At times, it has faced copyright lawsuits over services like its Books search engine, Google News site and YouTube video sharing site.

But on Tuesday, Google's role was reversed. It irately charged Microsoft with sneakily capturing the top Google results for various queries and grafting them into the Bing search engine. It lobbed its complaint in an article on the Search Engine Land blog and continued it during an onstage panel at a search event.

While the merits of Google's accusation are up for debate -- Microsoft denies the charge -- the fact that Google chose to complain in such a loud and agitated manner has become fertile ground for analysis and comment by industry observers.

Opinions range from those who view Google's actions as hypocritical to others who say the company did the right thing by airing its grievance.

Between the two extremes is plenty of speculation. For example, some wonder if the incident reflects a new, more reactive attitude toward slights emanating from Larry Page, the Google co-founder who will become CEO in April and is considered more volatile and less diplomatic than outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt.

"Google's complaint is the height of hypocrisy. The company's entire business model is built on the use of other people's content usually without bothering to seek permission," said John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog's Inside Google research team.

Google's allegations are an attempt to make Microsoft look bad for doing what every search provider does constantly: analyze competitors' search engines, he said.

"Google's effort to 'trap' Microsoft was a stupid waste of energy that would have been better spent figuring out ways to give consumers true options to protect their online privacy," Simpson said via e-mail. In a blog post, . "Google copies every original idea it can find, like a massive information sponge, sucking up business models and innovative creations and forming its own duplicates, often with little success," he wrote.

"Google is the world's largest information thief, steamrolling partners, content creators and competitors alike under its concept of the wheels of progress, justifying its dealings as being a free remix and expression of ideas. That's all fine and good if you don't complain about other people also taking the information you publicly offer without a license and then remixing it themselves," he added.

Others have a harder time establishing a direct parallel between the times Google has been accused of copying and Tuesday's incident.

"Although there are parallels, I think this situation is a bit different. In past instances -- YouTube, book search, news headlines -- Google was not copying from a competitor in order to beat that competitor," said Gartner analyst Ray Valdes via e-mail.

Eric Goldman, an associate law professor at Santa Clara University, said it's noteworthy that Google apparently has no plans to sue Microsoft over this. Google likely realizes that in business, it's fair game for companies to copy competitors, as long as what's being copied isn't legally protected under copyright, trademark, patent or other laws, he said.

However, according to Goldman, Google may have set the stage for end-user lawsuits against Microsoft alleging privacy violations. Google said it believes Microsoft is capturing Google user queries inappropriately via Internet Explorer and the Bing toolbar. Microsoft also denies this charge, saying users allow it to capture this "clickthrough" data.

Ultimately, Goldman sees the spat as the latest in a long string of public opinion battles between the two companies. "They look for every opportunity to tweak each other," he said in a phone interview.

Whether coincidental or not, the controversy erupted on the same day of a Microsoft-sponsored search event via , which got briefed by Google on its allegations. Google search software engineer Matt Cutts brought up the issue during a panel in which he participated in the event, triggering a verbal scuffle with fellow panelist and Microsoft Vice President Harry Shum.

Some point out that even in the search arena specifically, Google has been itself accused of copying features from competitors, including Bing and Ask.com.

"Google has certainly borrowed from others. I wouldn't say it has stolen outright but it has heavily borrowed at times," said industry analyst Greg Sterling, from Sterling Market Intelligence, in a phone interview.

In this it is not alone, especially among search engines, where "there's widespread watching of competitors and of duplicating things that are seen to be best practices and desirable features," Sterling said.

In addition, in instances such as defending its wholesale digitizing and indexing of library books without always asking for the permission of copyright owners, Google has also relied heavily on the fair use principle, which allows for the unauthorized use of copyright material under certain circumstances and limitations.

"Google has benefitted from a liberal interpretation of fair use," Sterling said. "There is definitely some irony here in Google pointing out that someone else is copying them."

Google didn't respond to a request for comment for this story.

IDC analyst Hadley Reynolds is one of those who questions if the incident is a sign of a new Google attitude in the marketplace with Page at the helm.

"I wonder if this came directly from Larry Page, and thus signals a kind of taking off the gloves and setting up what will be a more aggressively competitive stance [regarding] Microsoft/Yahoo and other tech competitors in the future," Reynolds said via e-mail.

Return to Top



Apple Sued Over iPhone Data Privacy | View Clip
02/01/2011
TechWeb

Apple last week was sued in San Jose, Calif., for alleged privacy and state business law violations arising from its disclosure of iPhone device identifiers and personal information.

Plaintiff Anthony Chiu, a resident of Alameda, Calif., claims that Apple knowingly transmits data to third parties that can be used to identify users of Apple's mobile devices, without user consent and in violation of various laws. The legal filing also targets 50 unnamed "John Doe" defendants, raising the possibility that third-party developers of apps that use the data in question could wind up in court.

The case hinges on Apple's use Unique Device Identifiers (UDIDs), serial numbers associated with every mobile device. The complaint states that Apple allows UDIDs to be displayed to application developers and allows downloaded apps to access the user's browsing history whenever the user clicks on an ad or application using his or her mobile device.

"Consequently, anyone who has used a mobile device to browse the Internet to obtain advice about hemorrhoids, sexually transmitted disease, abortion, drug rehabilitation, or care for the elderly; to search for jobs, seek out new romantic partners, engage in political activity; in fact, to do more or less anything; can be reasonably sure that the browsing history created by such investigation has been incorporated into a detailed dossier for sale to marketers," the complaint says.

The complaint goes on to cite a

Wall Street Journal investigation that found 56 out of 101 iOS and Android apps tested transmitted UDID numbers without authorization or consent. It also cites an academic paper published last year that found 68% of apps tested transmitted UDIDs.

The UDID is effectively a "super-cookie," the complaint alleges, and Apple fails to inform users about it in its privacy policy. In fact, the complaint states, Apple specifically disavows the sharing of personal information with third-parties for marketing purposes. As such the company's privacy policy would be more accurately described as a disclosure policy, the complaint suggests.

The key issue here is whether UDID numbers are actually deemed to be personal information. It's not entirely clear that they are.

Eric Goldman, associate professor of law at Santa Clara University School of Law, said in an e-mail that there has been a flood of lawsuits in recent months over the disclosure of unique identifiers. He pointed to Facebook, which is being sued over its disclosure of Facebook's user ID numbers in its URLs. (In response to privacy concerns, Facebook has proposed encrypting user ID numbers.)

Goldman says that before the merits of the case can be evaluated, a number of questions have to be answered. "Does disclosing a unique ID actually disclose anything 'private' or otherwise legally protected?" he asked in an e-mail. "Did the users expressly or impliedly consent to the disclosures? Perhaps most importantly, did the users suffer any legally cognizable harm? Courts have been suspicious of privacy lawsuits where the consumer's only 'harm' is that the company made a contrary promise."

According to Andre Rado, a partner at

Milberg LLP, the firm representing the plaintiff, UDID numbers do represent protected personal information.

"Privacy is 'protected' under the California constitution," Rado wrote in an e-mailed statement. "Transmission of the UDID would allow the recipient to identify exactly what a user is browsing and, together with other information, where they are at any given time. In addition, there are are disclosure-based and contract-based claims in the action."

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Apple Sued Over iPhone Data Privacy | View Clip
02/01/2011
InformationWeek - Online

The disclosure of Unique Device Identifiers associated with Apple's mobile devices represents a privacy law violation, the complaint claims.

sued in San Jose, Calif., for alleged privacy and state business law violations arising from its disclosure of iPhone device identifiers and personal information.

Plaintiff Anthony Chiu, a resident of Alameda, Calif., claims that Apple knowingly transmits data to third parties that can be used to identify users of Apple's mobile devices, without user consent and in violation of various laws. The legal filing also targets 50 unnamed "John Doe" defendants, raising the possibility that third-party developers of apps that use the data in question could wind up in court.

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The case hinges on Apple's use Unique Device Identifiers (UDIDs), serial numbers associated with every mobile device. The complaint states that Apple allows UDIDs to be displayed to application developers and allows downloaded apps to access the user's browsing history whenever the user clicks on an ad or application using his or her mobile device.

"Consequently, anyone who has used a mobile device to browse the Internet to obtain advice about hemorrhoids, sexually transmitted disease, abortion, drug rehabilitation, or care for the elderly; to search for jobs, seek out new romantic partners, engage in political activity; in fact, to do more or less anything; can be reasonably sure that the browsing history created by such investigation has been incorporated into a detailed dossier for sale to marketers," the complaint says.

3/0/5242

The complaint goes on to cite a

Wall Street Journal investigation that found 56 out of 101 iOS and Android apps tested transmitted UDID numbers without authorization or consent. It also cites an academic paper published last year that found 68% of apps tested transmitted UDIDs.

The UDID is effectively a "super-cookie," the complaint alleges, and Apple fails to inform users about it in its privacy policy. In fact, the complaint states, Apple specifically disavows the sharing of personal information with third-parties for marketing purposes. As such the company's privacy policy would be more accurately described as a disclosure policy, the complaint suggests.

The key issue here is whether UDID numbers are actually deemed to be personal information. It's not entirely clear that they are.

Eric Goldman, associate professor of law at Santa Clara University School of Law, said in an e-mail that there has been a flood of lawsuits in recent months over the disclosure of unique identifiers. He pointed to Facebook, which is being sued over its disclosure of Facebook's user ID numbers in its URLs. (In response to privacy concerns, Facebook has proposed encrypting user ID numbers.)

Goldman says that before the merits of the case can be evaluated, a number of questions have to be answered. "Does disclosing a unique ID actually disclose anything 'private' or otherwise legally protected?" he asked in an e-mail. "Did the users expressly or impliedly consent to the disclosures? Perhaps most importantly, did the users suffer any legally cognizable harm? Courts have been suspicious of privacy lawsuits where the consumer's only 'harm' is that the company made a contrary promise."

According to Andre Rado, a partner at

Milberg LLP, the firm representing the plaintiff, UDID numbers do represent protected personal information.

"Privacy is 'protected' under the California constitution," Rado wrote in an e-mailed statement. "Transmission of the UDID would allow the recipient to identify exactly what a user is browsing and, together with other information, where they are at any given time. In addition, there are are disclosure-based and contract-based claims in the action."

Now in its fifth year, Web 2.0 Expo is for the builders of the next-generation Web: designers, developers, entrepreneurs, marketers, and business strategists. It happens March 28-31 in San Francisco. .

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CQ HEALTHBEAT
02/01/2011
CQ HealthBeat

States were scrambling Tuesday to figure out how and if to implement the health care law after a federal judge in a multi-state legal challenge in Florida ruled the entire measure is unconstitutional.

On the day after the ruling a second prong of the GOP-led attack on the law materialized in the Senate where Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., sought to attach a health law repeal as an amendment to a pending Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill.

All of this is happening while state lawmakers in session around the nation have begun work on dozens of bills they would need to pass in order to comply with the law.

Some states that are plaintiffs in the suit appeared ready to stop implementing the measure, though details of how they would do that and for which parts of the law was not clear.

In Wisconsin, Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen said in a statement that District Court Judge Roger K. Vinson did not issue an injunction to stop the law, but that Vinson said in his decision that the declaratory judgment he made deeming the law unconstitutional was the "functional equivalent" of an injunction.

"This means that, for Wisconsin, the federal health care law is dead -- unless and until it is revived by an appellate court," said Van Hollen, a Republican. "Effectively, Wisconsin was relieved of any obligations or duties that were created under terms of the federal health care law."

Steve Means, executive assistant for the Wisconsin Department of Justice, said in an interview that how the court decision is applied in practical terms will have to be discussed by Van Hollen and Gov. Scott Walker, a Republican. Other states face similar decisions, he said. But, Means said, "when a law is declared unconstitutional, it's taken off the books."

In Florida, Republican Gov. Rick Scott, a longtime foe of the law, told reporters that he doesn't see the point of continuing to implement the measure.

According to the Orlando Sentinel, Scott said that he has no plans to phase in any provisions that would take effect between now and whenever the Supreme Court might render a decision, perhaps in 2012. "I've personally always believed it was going to get repealed or declared unconstitutional, because it's a significant job killer," Scott said. "We're not going to spend a lot of time and money to try and get ready to implement that."

Administration Defends Law

Obama administration officials continued to insist that Vinson's decision in favor of a 26 states who brought the suit was wrong and simply one opinion of one judge in one court.

"Implementation will continue," said Stephanie Cutter, White House director of special projects, in a blog post. Two other federal district court judges have upheld the law, she stressed. Expectations are in the U.S. Supreme Court that ultimately will decide on the law's legality.

But legal experts suggested that the Obama administration might have to quickly seek a stay of the decision to keep the health care law's implementation on track in state legislatures and on the federal level. Unlike an earlier decision by a Virginia judge that only declared the individual mandate that goes into effect in 2014 as unconstitutional, Vinson ruled against the entire law and its provisions currently in effect.

If the Justice Department can't get a stay from a district or appellate court, or if the states challenge such a stay, the issue might be sent to the Supreme Court.

That could possibly provide an early look at the justices' sentiments when it comes to the health care law, said Brad Joondeph, a law professor at Santa Clara University who's been closely following the suits. "My guess is they will seek a stay," he said.

A Department of Justice spokeswoman said that lawyers were continuing to analyze the decision and decide what steps, if any, to take prior to an appeal to the Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit in Atlanta.

Cutter said that the Department of Justice "has made clear that it is reviewing all of its options in responding to this case, as it does in all cases."

GOP AGs Differ On Implementation

A parade of Republican attorneys general and governors appearing on Fox News offered varying perspectives on what they'll do in the meantime, though they agreed they'd like the Supreme Court to settle the issue quickly.

South Carolina Gov. Nikki R. Haley said she planned to contact other governors and send a letter to President Obama asking him to expedite a Supreme Court ruling. "You know, this is something that you've got every state in chaos," said Haley. "We've got to make sure that we are taking care of this quickly so that we can move forward with our states."

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott said on Fox that he's told state lawmakers that the ruling is important but it's still unclear what the Supreme Court will decide. "I think it is prudent for our legislature to continue making preparations so we can be ready in the event this district court ruling is overturned," said Abbott.

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette, asked if his state would operate as if the law did not exist, said, "Well, the judge made it clear in his declaratory ruling that he expects federal officials to adhere to his judgment. What I'm going to do is talk to the governor. We have a great new governor in the state of Michigan. We'll talk this through."

State legislatures, though, are at work on initiatives related to the health care law, said Richard Cauchi, program director for health at the National Conference of State Legislatures. He said lawmakers are in session now in 44 states and the NCSL has identified at least 250 bills related to implementation, with more likely to be introduced because some legislatures have only been in session a short time.

Cauchi said that more than 70 state bills deal with consumer protections, patient appeals, premium rate reviews, medical payouts, coverage for those with pre-existing conditions and child-only insurance. "Many others address the question of establishing a state-administered exchange," he said in an e-mail. "Others propose structures, funding and authorization, Medicaid adjustments and other specific areas. More than 50 bills propose that their state challenge or not participate in certain elements of reform."

Obama administration officials and congressional Democrats defended the law in the aftermath of the ruling. "It would be a real mistake to have this law go down," said Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Donald M. Berwick, speaking to reporters after a briefing on accountable care organizations at the Brookings Institution. "The benefits to seniors and to the country as a whole are enormous."

And Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., an author of the law, noted that "the score is two to two" on court rulings, with two judges declaring the law unconstitutional on its merits and two upholding it.

"It'll be resolved by the Supremes," said Baucus. "We'll have to wait and see what that is." Asked if some states are dragging their feet now on implementation, he said it depends on the political makeup of states.

"Some states, I'm sure, are following verbatim repeal provisions that are proposed in other states," he said. "It's regrettable, but it happens. I just urge people in all areas, including this one, just to listen to the other side."

The Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday will hold a hearing on the constitutionality of the health care law that will feature both supporters and opponents. Witnesses will be John Kroger, the Oregon attorney general; Randy E. Barnett, professor of legal theory, Georgetown University Law Center; Michael A. Carvin, partner, Jones Day; Walter Dellinger, professor emeritus of law, Duke University School of Law; and Charles Fried, professor of law, Harvard Law School.

(pdf)

Rebecca Adams and John Reichard contributed to this story.

Jane Norman can be reached at jnorman@cq.com

Source: CQ HealthBeat
Same-day coverage of the people and events shaping health care policy from Washington.
©2011 Congressional Quarterly Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright © 2011 Congressional Quarterly

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States Mull Implementation Options Following Ruling on Health Care Law
02/01/2011
CQ HealthBeat

By Jane Norman, CQ HealthBeat Associate Editor

States were scrambling Tuesday to figure out how and if to implement the health care law after a federal judge in a multi-state legal challenge in Florida ruled the entire measure is unconstitutional.

On the day after the ruling a second prong of the GOP-led attack on the law materialized in the Senate where Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., sought to attach a health law repeal as an amendment to a pending Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill.

All of this is happening while state lawmakers in session around the nation have begun work on dozens of bills they would need to pass in order to comply with the law.

Some states that are plaintiffs in the suit appeared ready to stop implementing the measure, though details of how they would do that and for which parts of the law was not clear.

In Wisconsin, Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen said in a statement that District Court Judge Roger K. Vinson did not issue an injunction to stop the law, but that Vinson said in his decision that the declaratory judgment he made deeming the law unconstitutional was the “functional equivalent” of an injunction.

“This means that, for Wisconsin, the federal health care law is dead — unless and until it is revived by an appellate court,” said Van Hollen, a Republican. “Effectively, Wisconsin was relieved of any obligations or duties that were created under terms of the federal health care law.”

Steve Means, executive assistant for the Wisconsin Department of Justice, said in an interview that how the court decision is applied in practical terms will have to be discussed by Van Hollen and Gov. Scott Walker, a Republican. Other states face similar decisions, he said. But, Means said, “when a law is declared unconstitutional, it's taken off the books.”

In Florida, Republican Gov. Rick Scott, a longtime foe of the law, told reporters that he doesn't see the point of continuing to implement the measure.

According to the Orlando Sentinel, Scott said that he has no plans to phase in any provisions that would take effect between now and whenever the Supreme Court might render a decision, perhaps in 2012. “I've personally always believed it was going to get repealed or declared unconstitutional, because it's a significant job killer,” Scott said. “We're not going to spend a lot of time and money to try and get ready to implement that.”
Administration Defends Law

Obama administration officials continued to insist that Vinson's decision in favor of a 26 states who brought the suit was wrong and simply one opinion of one judge in one court.

“Implementation will continue,” said Stephanie Cutter, White House director of special projects, in a blog post. Two other federal district court judges have upheld the law, she stressed. Expectations are in the U.S. Supreme Court that ultimately will decide on the law's legality.

But legal experts suggested that the Obama administration might have to quickly seek a stay of the decision to keep the health care law's implementation on track in state legislatures and on the federal level. Unlike an earlier decision by a Virginia judge that only declared the individual mandate that goes into effect in 2014 as unconstitutional, Vinson ruled against the entire law and its provisions currently in effect.

If the Justice Department can't get a stay from a district or appellate court, or if the states challenge such a stay, the issue might be sent to the Supreme Court.

That could possibly provide an early look at the justices' sentiments when it comes to the health care law, said Brad Joondeph, a law professor at Santa Clara University who's been closely following the suits. “My guess is they will seek a stay,” he said.

A Department of Justice spokeswoman said that lawyers were continuing to analyze the decision and decide what steps, if any, to take prior to an appeal to the Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit in Atlanta.

Cutter said that the Department of Justice “has made clear that it is reviewing all of its options in responding to this case, as it does in all cases.”
GOP AGs Differ On Implementation

A parade of Republican attorneys general and governors appearing on Fox News offered varying perspectives on what they'll do in the meantime, though they agreed they'd like the Supreme Court to settle the issue quickly.

South Carolina Gov. Nikki R. Haley said she planned to contact other governors and send a letter to President Obama asking him to expedite a Supreme Court ruling. “You know, this is something that you've got every state in chaos,” said Haley. “We've got to make sure that we are taking care of this quickly so that we can move forward with our states.”

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott said on Fox that he's told state lawmakers that the ruling is important but it's still unclear what the Supreme Court will decide. “I think it is prudent for our legislature to continue making preparations so we can be ready in the event this district court ruling is overturned,” said Abbott.

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette, asked if his state would operate as if the law did not exist, said, “Well, the judge made it clear in his declaratory ruling that he expects federal officials to adhere to his judgment. What I'm going to do is talk to the governor. We have a great new governor in the state of Michigan. We'll talk this through.”

State legislatures, though, are at work on initiatives related to the health care law, said Richard Cauchi, program director for health at the National Conference of State Legislatures. He said lawmakers are in session now in 44 states and the NCSL has identified at least 250 bills related to implementation, with more likely to be introduced because some legislatures have only been in session a short time.

Cauchi said that more than 70 state bills deal with consumer protections, patient appeals, premium rate reviews, medical payouts, coverage for those with pre-existing conditions and child-only insurance. “Many others address the question of establishing a state-administered exchange,” he said in an e-mail. “Others propose structures, funding and authorization, Medicaid adjustments and other specific areas. More than 50 bills propose that their state challenge or not participate in certain elements of reform.”

Obama administration officials and congressional Democrats defended the law in the aftermath of the ruling. “It would be a real mistake to have this law go down,” said Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Donald M. Berwick, speaking to reporters after a briefing on accountable care organizations at the Brookings Institution. “The benefits to seniors and to the country as a whole are enormous.”

And Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., an author of the law, noted that “the score is two to two” on court rulings, with two judges declaring the law unconstitutional on its merits and two upholding it.

“It'll be resolved by the Supremes,” said Baucus. “We'll have to wait and see what that is.” Asked if some states are dragging their feet now on implementation, he said it depends on the political makeup of states.

“Some states, I'm sure, are following verbatim repeal provisions that are proposed in other states,” he said. “It's regrettable, but it happens. I just urge people in all areas, including this one, just to listen to the other side.”

The Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday will hold a hearing on the constitutionality of the health care law that will feature both supporters and opponents. Witnesses will be John Kroger, the Oregon attorney general; Randy E. Barnett, professor of legal theory, Georgetown University Law Center; Michael A. Carvin, partner, Jones Day; Walter Dellinger, professor emeritus of law, Duke University School of Law; and Charles Fried, professor of law, Harvard Law School.

White House blog post (pdf)

Rebecca Adams and John Reichard contributed to this story.

Jane Norman can be reached at jnorman@cq.com
Source: CQ Online News
Same-day coverage of the people and events shaping health care policy from Washington.
© 2011 CQ Roll Call All Rights Reserved.

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Aldo Billingslea is a major player in Bay Area theater scene | View Clip
02/01/2011
San Jose Mercury News - Online

Actors Carrie Paff, left, and Aldo Billingslea, right, during a scene of the play "Collapse," inspired by the 2007 Mississippi River Bridge Collapse in Minnesota at the Aurora Theatre in Berkeley, Calif., on Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2011. Billingslea has become a favorite among Bay Area theater fans, with a string of strong performances at a variety of theater companies.(Doug Duran/Staff)

Back in college in Texas, Aldo Billingslea was a star on the football field, playing guard and tackle for the Austin College Kangaroos. Now he's one of the MVPs of the Bay Area theater scene.

A natural athlete, the brawny 6-foot-4-inch Texas native was expected to be good at sports, but no one saw his hunger for the stage coming. In fact his commitment to the theat-uh drew quite a bit of ribbing by the jock set.

"Whenever I screwed up a play the coach would yell 'Hey Billingslea, get your head out of "Hamlet!—‰'," recalls the down-to-earth actor while rushing from his home in Santa Clara to rehearsals for "Collapse" at Berkeley's Aurora Theatre Company. "Everybody got a big kick out of that."

Find things to do

His passion for the pigskin didn't last, but the 45-year-old went on to devote his life to the theater, an arena in which he combines a nonstop work ethic, a magnetic stage presence and a deep sense of commitment to the craft.

''It's like August Wilson said in 'Joe Turner,' you've got to find your song," Billingslea says in his rich baritone. "This is mine. It's my calling in life. It's why I am on the planet. The theater is the place I feel most connected to the rest of humanity."

A veteran of the acclaimed Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Billingslea now spends most of his time as an associate professor at Santa Clara University. His specialties include assessing the impact seminal African-American playwrights have has on

the arc of the American theater, from Lorraine Hansberry to Suzan-Lori Parks.

"As a teacher who wants to educate the whole person," he says, "I think it's important to give voice to individuals who have made major contributions to the art."

Unlike some academics, he knows how to make art accessible, and he sprinkles his conversations with "awesome" as well as "anon." He's no glory hog (he acts with little troupes as well as big ones) and he is a "serial commuter" (he knows exactly how many miles to Marin Theatre Company: 73). After "Collapse," he will direct "A Raisin in the Sun" at Mountain View's Pear Avenue Theatre. If he is not as well known as some actors, it's not because he doesn't deserve the attention.

He's "one of the Bay Area theater's greatest assets," says Robert Kelley, artistic director of TheatreWorks, where the actor is a regular. "An outstanding artist, yes, an inspiring teacher, certainly, but also a community leader of immense integrity and intense commitment. And he's a great guy besides."

"Aldo is so bright and committed to his work, and the theater in general, and he brings all that strength and assured confidence to every conversation, every insight and every role," says actor/director Michael Gene Sullivan of the San Francisco Mime Troupe. "The reason he isn't famous is that he wouldn't drop his academic commitment ".... It means that one of the finest actors of the past decade has spent too much time out of the limelight.

"That was the price of his commitment, and he has never to my knowledge regretted it."

That sense of balance may be the secret to his success. In fact, he almost signed up for Shakespeare Santa Cruz this summer but turned it down to spend time with his 12-year-old daughter Trinity. That way his wife, Renee, an artist, can log some time in the studio.

"It's a juggling act because we are both artists," he says. "For a long time when my daughter was small, my wife stayed home to be with her, so now it's time for me to do my part. Basically I am making deposits on hubby points because when I have a show to do, I make a lot of withdrawals."

One of the reasons he keeps busy is his versatility. The actor can skip from Shakespeare to hip-hop without missing a beat. In recent years he has garnered raves playing Othello (Marin Theatre Company), the Obama-like Harmond Wilks in "Radio Golf" (TheatreWorks) and the escaped slave Damascus in "Jesus Moonwalks the Mississippi" (San Francisco's Cutting Ball Theater).

In "Collapse," a new play inspired by the 2007 Mississippi River bridge tragedy in Minneapolis, playwright Allison Moore explores how people struggle to cope with chaos that spirals out beyond their control. He plays a comic fellow named Ted whom he describes as a "sex addict who's impotent."

"Aldo is primarily known for his dramatic roles, but what has impressed me over the years is his range," says Tom Ross, artistic director of the Aurora. "One of my joys in having Aldo appear here in 'Collapse' is that people are going to see what a funny guy Aldo can be. He is hilarious."

"I've never seen Aldo give anything but a luminous performance," Kelley says.

Billingslea is that rare actor who doesn't love to talk about himself, preferring to keep the spotlight on the work at hand. "If I do my job right, I serve the play and I serve the audience. It's really not about me."

In a field dominated by monster egos, his modesty stands out.

"He cares deeply about people, shares his feelings openly, is honest in all things, and has one of the greatest smiles I've ever met," Kelley says. "Aldo actually believes that theater is important in shaping our lives and our culture. You can't be around him for long without realizing that. It's something he communicates in word and deed day after day. His enthusiasm for making art rubs off on everyone he meets."

Indeed, when asked how rehearsals are going at the Aurora, Billingslea responds with characteristic glee: "The brother is stoked!"

Contact Karen D'Souza at 408-271-3772. Check out her theater reviews, features and blog at www.mercurynews.com/karen-dsouza.

'Collapse'

Through: March 6

Where: Aurora Theatre Company, 2081 Addison Street, Berkeley

Tickets: $34-$55, 510-843-4822, www.auroratheatre.org

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Aldo Billingslea is a major player in Bay Area theater scene | View Clip
02/01/2011
Daily Review, The

Actors Carrie Paff, left, and Aldo Billingslea, right, during a scene of the play "Collapse," inspired by the 2007 Mississippi River Bridge Collapse in Minnesota at the Aurora Theatre in Berkeley, Calif., on Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2011. Billingslea has become a favorite among Bay Area theater fans, with a string of strong performances at a variety of theater companies.(Doug Duran/Staff)

Back in college in Texas, Aldo Billingslea was a star on the football field, playing guard and tackle for the Austin College Kangaroos. Now he's one of the MVPs of the Bay Area theater scene.

A natural athlete, the brawny 6-foot-4-inch Texas native was expected to be good at sports, but no one saw his hunger for the stage coming. In fact his commitment to the theat-uh drew quite a bit of ribbing by the jock set.

"Whenever I screwed up a play the coach would yell 'Hey Billingslea, get your head out of "Hamlet!—‰'," recalls the down-to-earth actor while rushing from his home in Santa Clara to rehearsals for "Collapse" at Berkeley's Aurora Theatre Company. "Everybody got a big kick out of that."

Find things to do

His passion for the pigskin didn't last, but the 45-year-old went on to devote his life to the theater, an arena in which he combines a nonstop work ethic, a magnetic stage presence and a deep sense of commitment to the craft.

''It's like August Wilson said in 'Joe Turner,' you've got to find your song," Billingslea says in his rich baritone. "This is mine. It's my calling in life. It's why I am on the planet. The theater is the place I feel most connected to the rest of humanity."

A veteran of the acclaimed Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Billingslea now spends most of his time as an associate professor at Santa Clara University. His specialties include assessing the impact seminal African-American playwrights have has on

the arc of the American theater, from Lorraine Hansberry to Suzan-Lori Parks.

"As a teacher who wants to educate the whole person," he says, "I think it's important to give voice to individuals who have made major contributions to the art."

Unlike some academics, he knows how to make art accessible, and he sprinkles his conversations with "awesome" as well as "anon." He's no glory hog (he acts with little troupes as well as big ones) and he is a "serial commuter" (he knows exactly how many miles to Marin Theatre Company: 73). After "Collapse," he will direct "A Raisin in the Sun" at Mountain View's Pear Avenue Theatre. If he is not as well known as some actors, it's not because he doesn't deserve the attention.

He's "one of the Bay Area theater's greatest assets," says Robert Kelley, artistic director of TheatreWorks, where the actor is a regular. "An outstanding artist, yes, an inspiring teacher, certainly, but also a community leader of immense integrity and intense commitment. And he's a great guy besides."

"Aldo is so bright and committed to his work, and the theater in general, and he brings all that strength and assured confidence to every conversation, every insight and every role," says actor/director Michael Gene Sullivan of the San Francisco Mime Troupe. "The reason he isn't famous is that he wouldn't drop his academic commitment ".... It means that one of the finest actors of the past decade has spent too much time out of the limelight.

"That was the price of his commitment, and he has never to my knowledge regretted it."

That sense of balance may be the secret to his success. In fact, he almost signed up for Shakespeare Santa Cruz this summer but turned it down to spend time with his 12-year-old daughter Trinity. That way his wife, Renee, an artist, can log some time in the studio.

"It's a juggling act because we are both artists," he says. "For a long time when my daughter was small, my wife stayed home to be with her, so now it's time for me to do my part. Basically I am making deposits on hubby points because when I have a show to do, I make a lot of withdrawals."

One of the reasons he keeps busy is his versatility. The actor can skip from Shakespeare to hip-hop without missing a beat. In recent years he has garnered raves playing Othello (Marin Theatre Company), the Obama-like Harmond Wilks in "Radio Golf" (TheatreWorks) and the escaped slave Damascus in "Jesus Moonwalks the Mississippi" (San Francisco's Cutting Ball Theater).

In "Collapse," a new play inspired by the 2007 Mississippi River bridge tragedy in Minneapolis, playwright Allison Moore explores how people struggle to cope with chaos that spirals out beyond their control. He plays a comic fellow named Ted whom he describes as a "sex addict who's impotent."

"Aldo is primarily known for his dramatic roles, but what has impressed me over the years is his range," says Tom Ross, artistic director of the Aurora. "One of my joys in having Aldo appear here in 'Collapse' is that people are going to see what a funny guy Aldo can be. He is hilarious."

"I've never seen Aldo give anything but a luminous performance," Kelley says.

Billingslea is that rare actor who doesn't love to talk about himself, preferring to keep the spotlight on the work at hand. "If I do my job right, I serve the play and I serve the audience. It's really not about me."

In a field dominated by monster egos, his modesty stands out.

"He cares deeply about people, shares his feelings openly, is honest in all things, and has one of the greatest smiles I've ever met," Kelley says. "Aldo actually believes that theater is important in shaping our lives and our culture. You can't be around him for long without realizing that. It's something he communicates in word and deed day after day. His enthusiasm for making art rubs off on everyone he meets."

Indeed, when asked how rehearsals are going at the Aurora, Billingslea responds with characteristic glee: "The brother is stoked!"

Contact Karen D'Souza at 408-271-3772. Check out her theater reviews, features and blog at www.mercurynews.com/karen-dsouza.

'Collapse'

Through: March 6

Where: Aurora Theatre Company, 2081 Addison Street, Berkeley

Tickets: $34-$55, 510-843-4822, www.auroratheatre.org

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Churches organize to fight pornography on Super Bowl Sunday | View Clip
02/01/2011
Examiner.com

Some churches in the Bay Area of California announced their intentions of having a nationawide campaign agianst pornography on Super Bowl Sunday.

According to KTVU.com.

"Victory Outreach Church of Hayward is one of at list a half dozen Bay Area institutions where pastors will deliver a sermon will be about the evils and dangers of pornography on Super Bowl Sunday.

The event is part of a national game plan laid out by the so-called Triple-X Church in Las Vegas. The church has held its annual nationwide anti-pornography campaign 'Porn Sunday' every year for nearly a decade.

The Super Bowl brings together many friends and families. Some church leaders say they get a huge turnout for services before the game.

More than 300 churches including Victory Outreach in Hayward have signed on for the campaign.

"Like the elephant in the room, everyone knows that it's there but no one wants to say anything about it," said Victory Outreach Minister William Young. "So what we want to do is collaborate with the other churches and come together and expose this epidemic."

The Triple-X Church enlisted NFL and former NFL players to help in the effort. Some talk about their struggle from easy access to porn on the internet.

A Santa Clara University law professor said 'Porn Sunday' supporters should tread carefully.

"I think it's healthy if it spurs national debate on the issues of sexual speech in general," said SCU Law Professor Pratheepan Gulasekaram. "I think it's unhealthy if it then translates into people believing that just because a lot of people believe that certain types of sexual speech should be banned that it should be banned in law."

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Chuches Organize To Fight Porn On Superbowl Sunday | View Clip
02/01/2011
KTVU-TV - Online

HAYWARD, Calif. -- Some Bay Area churches announced plans Monday to participate in a nationwide event aimed at fighting pornography that is scheduled to take place on Super Bowl Sunday.

Victory Outreach Church of Hayward is one of at list a half dozen Bay Area institutions where pastors will deliver a sermon will be about the evils and dangers of pornography on Super Bowl Sunday.

The event is part of a national game plan laid out by the so-called Triple-X Church in Las Vegas. The church has held its annual nationwide anti-pornography campaign 'Porn Sunday' every year for nearly a decade.

The Super Bowl brings together many friends and families. Some church leaders say they get a huge turnout for services before the game.

More than 300 churches including Victory Outreach in Hayward have signed on for the campaign.

"Like the elephant in the room, everyone knows that it's there but no one wants to say anything about it," said Victory Outreach Minister William Young. "So what we want to do is collaborate with the other churches and come together and expose this epidemic."

The Triple-X Church enlisted NFL and former NFL players to help in the effort. Some talk about their struggle from easy access to porn on the internet.

A Santa Clara University law professor said 'Porn Sunday' supporters should tread carefully.

"I think it's healthy if it spurs national debate on the issues of sexual speech in general," said SCU Law Professor Pratheepan Gulasekaram. "I think it's unhealthy if it then translates into people believing that just because a lot of people believe that certain types of sexual speech should be banned that it should be banned in law."

Victory Outreach's Young said the church plans to walk that line.

"It's a debate we don't even want to effect," said Young. "We just want to expose it. We just want to let people know how bad pornography is."

Victory Outreach said it's impossible to say how each church will approach the topic, but one thing remains certain: for many people, the talk on Sunday won't be just about football.

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Aldo Billingslea is a major player in Bay Area theater scene | View Clip
02/01/2011
Contra Costa Times - Online

Back in college in Texas, Aldo Billingslea was a star on the football field, playing guard and tackle for the Austin College Kangaroos. Now he's one of the MVPs of the Bay Area theater scene.

A natural athlete, the brawny 6-foot-4-inch Texas native was expected to be good at sports, but no one saw his hunger for the stage coming. In fact his commitment to the theat-uh drew quite a bit of ribbing by the jock set.

"Whenever I screwed up a play the coach would yell 'Hey Billingslea, get your head out of "Hamlet!�'," recalls the down-to-earth actor while rushing from his home in Santa Clara to rehearsals for "Collapse" at Berkeley's Aurora Theatre Company. "Everybody got a big kick out of that." Find things to do Browse our event listings Restaurant listings Movie listings | Movie theaters Concert listings Performing arts listings His passion for the pigskin didn't last, but the 45-year-old went on to devote his life to the theater, an arena in which he combines a nonstop work ethic, a magnetic stage presence and a deep sense of commitment to the craft.

''It's like August Wilson said in 'Joe Turner,' you've got to find your song," Billingslea says in his rich baritone. "This is mine. It's my calling in life. It's why I am on the planet. The theater is the place I feel most connected to the rest of humanity."

A veteran of the acclaimed Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Billingslea now spends most of his time as an associate professor at Santa Clara University. His specialties include assessing the impact seminal African-American playwrights have has on the arc of the American theater, from Lorraine Hansberry to Suzan-Lori Parks.

"As a teacher who wants to educate the whole person," he says, "I think it's important to give voice to individuals who have made major contributions to the art."

Unlike some academics, he knows how to make art accessible, and he sprinkles his conversations with "awesome" as well as "anon." He's no glory hog (he acts with little troupes as well as big ones) and he is a "serial commuter" (he knows exactly how many miles to Marin Theatre Company: 73). After "Collapse," he will direct "A Raisin in the Sun" at Mountain View's Pear Avenue Theatre. If he is not as well known as some actors, it's not because he doesn't deserve the attention.

He's "one of the Bay Area theater's greatest assets," says Robert Kelley, artistic director of TheatreWorks, where the actor is a regular. "An outstanding artist, yes, an inspiring teacher, certainly, but also a community leader of immense integrity and intense commitment. And he's a great guy besides."

"Aldo is so bright and committed to his work, and the theater in general, and he brings all that strength and assured confidence to every conversation, every insight and every role," says actor/director Michael Gene Sullivan of the San Francisco Mime Troupe. "The reason he isn't famous is that he wouldn't drop his academic commitment ".... It means that one of the finest actors of the past decade has spent too much time out of the limelight.

"That was the price of his commitment, and he has never to my knowledge regretted it."

That sense of balance may be the secret to his success. In fact, he almost signed up for Shakespeare Santa Cruz this summer but turned it down to spend time with his 12-year-old daughter Trinity. That way his wife, Renee, an artist, can log some time in the studio.

"It's a juggling act because we are both artists," he says. "For a long time when my daughter was small, my wife stayed home to be with her, so now it's time for me to do my part. Basically I am making deposits on hubby points because when I have a show to do, I make a lot of withdrawals."

One of the reasons he keeps busy is his versatility. The actor can skip from Shakespeare to hip-hop without missing a beat. In recent years he has garnered raves playing Othello (Marin Theatre Company), the Obama-like Harmond Wilks in "Radio Golf" (TheatreWorks) and the escaped slave Damascus in "Jesus Moonwalks the Mississippi" (San Francisco's Cutting Ball Theater).

In "Collapse," a new play inspired by the 2007 Mississippi River bridge tragedy in Minneapolis, playwright Allison Moore explores how people struggle to cope with chaos that spirals out beyond their control. He plays a comic fellow named Ted whom he describes as a "sex addict who's impotent."

"Aldo is primarily known for his dramatic roles, but what has impressed me over the years is his range," says Tom Ross, artistic director of the Aurora. "One of my joys in having Aldo appear here in 'Collapse' is that people are going to see what a funny guy Aldo can be. He is hilarious."

"I've never seen Aldo give anything but a luminous performance," Kelley says.

Billingslea is that rare actor who doesn't love to talk about himself, preferring to keep the spotlight on the work at hand. "If I do my job right, I serve the play and I serve the audience. It's really not about me."

In a field dominated by monster egos, his modesty stands out.

"He cares deeply about people, shares his feelings openly, is honest in all things, and has one of the greatest smiles I've ever met," Kelley says. "Aldo actually believes that theater is important in shaping our lives and our culture. You can't be around him for long without realizing that. It's something he communicates in word and deed day after day. His enthusiasm for making art rubs off on everyone he meets."

Indeed, when asked how rehearsals are going at the Aurora, Billingslea responds with characteristic glee: "The brother is stoked!"

Contact Karen D'Souza at 408-271-3772. Check out her theater reviews, features and blog at www.mercurynews.com/karen-dsouza.

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Pulitzer-prize winning investigative journalist Maurice Possley revists Chicago's crooked ways | View Clip
02/01/2011
WBEZ-FM - Online

Pulitzer-prize winning journalist Maurice Possley covered Cook County courts during the FBI investigation 'Operation Greylord.'

Pulitzer-prize winning journalist Maurice Possley worked as an investigative reporter for nearly 25 years for the Chicago Tribune. As a federal courts reporter and then as a deputy metropolitan editor, he unearthed great misconduct and wrongful convictions. He had a front row seat to the FBI's infamous investigation into Cook County's court system during Operation Greylord in the 1980s. Former Gov. George Ryan cited Maurice's reportage and that of his colleagues at the Chicago Tribune as playing a role in his historic decision to institute a moratorium on the death penalty in Illinois in 2000 and commute the death sentences of 171 death row inmates to life in prison without parole.

During its Mayor Monday look at corruption and transparency in Chicago, Eight Forty-Eight spoke to Possley about what he saw during his years in the reporting trenches and whether or not a new mayor could turn this ship around.

Possley is currently working for the Northern California Innocence Project at Santa Clara University School of Law.

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Alternative energy for Nepal - GlobalGiving | View Clip
02/01/2011
GlobalGiving

Climate Change > A Clean Solar Alternative to Kerosene Lamps, Nepal (#1268)

With the increasing demand of more light and the emphasis made on research and development works towards developing locally and easily assembled LED lights, 1 Watt and 2 Watt LED Lights were produced. These lights currently are in the production phase at the local level by youth group. By the end of January 2011, the lights had been packaged in different system of 5 Watt and 10 Watt Solar System and are now in the promotion phase. Photographs of the systems are attached for the reference.

With the reference of the successful implementation of Solar Tuki Mass charging unit installed in the school of kaleshwor VDC of Lalitpur District and Kantipur Village of Chitwan District, request from the communities and schools from far western regions of Nepal had been received. But, due to lack of enough support, the speed for the installation of mass charging center at different places could not be increases as per the receipt of the requests. Coordination with other organization for the installation of community charging at the needy area is under progress at the local level.

Project Update on Solar Tuki - October 2010

The following activities had been achieved till the end of October 2010:

• Discussion and meetings with Executive Committee members were done during this period. The discussions were mainly focused for the development of new strategy for the promotion of solar tuki in new locations.

• Emphasis on research & development to increase the efficiency of solar tuki as well as development of new products was also initiated during this period as per the suggestions from the local people and community. During this period, new products with brighter light efficiency were also developed and 2 youth were trained and engaged in the development of the product.

The following activities had been achieved till the end of July 2010:

• Establishment & Support for Community Charging Center, Chitwan: A Community Charging center has been established at the kantipur village of Chitwan District. Near about 50 household without connection of national grid electricity are benefited through the establishment of the center. Two persons from the village were trained as well as equipped with the necessary equipments for operating the community charging center in the village. The graph of Gross Happiness Index of the village people seems to be in increasing trend.

• Technical Training for Youths On the job trainings were provided for 5 youths of different areas of Nepal. After skilled with the assembling of solar tuki, they were also equipped through a set of tools to provide repair and maintenance service in their village respectively.

• Coordination with Government Authorities and different NGO's: One week Solar Light Assembling Training has been organized for women representatives from different women's group. The training was coordinated with Lalitpur Sub-Metropolitan City Office. The main objectives of the training were to develop skilled workers to manufacture solar tuki and solar lights for the promotion in urban areas as well as in rural areas. Similarly, 3 days technical training for different women groups of Butwal in coordination with WATCH had been organized. The youth trainee from ECCA had provided the training for the womens from different local groups. For the promotion of solar tuki in high hills, coordination with LACCOS (NGO formed by the active local youths) has been ongoing.

Bill Brower is a Field Program Officer with GlobalGiving who is visiting our partners' projects throughout South and Southeast Asia. On April 28-29 he visited the village of Kantipur in southern Nepal, which received solar lamps three months ago. His "Postcard" from the visit:

It can be difficult when I visit projects, particularly those which seek to achieve less tangible goals like women's empowerment or a greater environmental ethic in children, to see definitive signs of success. It was therefore a pleasure to stay the night in Kantipur and see how many people were using ECCA's solar tuki (Nepali for "lamp") simply by walking up the street (unannounced). The result was promising: Though I only had time to see a fraction of the 60 homes who received a solar tuki, each of the homes I visited was using theirs:

An old man used his while preparing dinner. A woman, taking advantage of its portability, used it while she rinsed off in a stream. Another woman and a family of three a few houses down from her ate Nepal's traditional dal baht by its light. An old woman added to the light from her traditional stove as she cooked (see picture). And two boys poured studiously over their books (see picture). All of the people I asked said they hadn't bought kerosene since receiving the lamp (a savings of about three days' wage per month). You can judge for yourself (see picture), but I think the solar tuki gives more, better quality light. It also undoubtedly gives off fewer fumes and is less of a fire hazard.

It sounds as if ECCA is taking steps to make solar tukis sustainable on a local level. They've chosen a simple design, which uses locally available materials (other than the solar panel). They train people in the community to maintain them. They try to ensure ownership by charging a nominal fee for the devices-sometimes facilitated by a local microfinance institution. The main feedback they've gotten from users is that they'd like them to provide even more light so they're designing bigger models.

Solar Tuki Project Update
By Angel Chitrakar - Program Officer

Following Activities have taken place in past 3 months: • Research and Development : Further development of • Coordination with Women Acting Together for Change (WATCH) for promotion of solar tuki in its project areas. i.e. Nawalparashi and Rupandehi District were made. • Orientation program regarding the ways for the promotion of solar tuki and its benefits were made for the staffs, different women groups and youths groups (groups working with WATCH) of Rupandehi and Nawalparashi District were made. • Agreement and promotion of 100 sets of solar tuki with Clean Energy Nepal (CEN) were made for the promotion of solar tuki in Bajhang District. • 2 local person of Bhamchaur VDC and Banjh VDC of Bajhang District were trained for assembling Solar Tuki and microfinance system for the promotion of solar tuki. Additionally, the technical and hardware supports required for the establishment of repair & maintenance centre in the VDC were also done for the persons.

Solar Tuki - update
By Prachet K. Shrestha - Team Leader

Following activities have taken place in the past 3 months:

 Two representatives from ERM Foundation (from UK and India) visited Nepal to review and to support in the preparation of detailed promotional strategy for solar tuki  Identification of possible microfinance organizations for the promotion of solar tuki in different regions of Nepal  Coordination with Single Women Entrepreneurs Group for the promotion of solar tuki through single women in different regions of Nepal  Completed Solar Tuki Assembling Training in coordination with Lalitpur Sub-Metropolitan City for the representatives of various women groups  Import of Solar Panel and various components of solar tuki  Establishment of warehouse and started the distribution of solar tuki assembling components  Research and Development: Further development of package for charging GSM and CDMA mobile sets

Thanks to the donor community of the Global Giving (and others as well), we are able to reach more no. of rural poor (who do not have the financial capacity to make down payment) through the credit and installment payback scheme (by using the revolving fund).

A Clean Solar Alternative to Kerosene Lamps, Nepal (Update Jan 2009)
By Prachet Kumar Shrestha - Team Leader

In the past six months, progress has been done in different aspects.

DISTRIBUTION

The outreach to the rural community has increased. More no. of rural community groups / cooperatives (from east, central and west Nepal) has been linked. In the past six months, 500 no. of solar tuki lamps were sold and new linkage developed with 5 cooperatives.

CENTRAL WAREHOUSE

To further promote the solar tuki as an enterprise and to support the local level entrepreneurs, the concept of central warehouse has been developed. The idea is to import quality components from abroad (India, China) and to provide it to the local level entrepreneurs to fabricate the solar tuki. The warehouse will help in maintaining the quality of the solar tuki lamps and the end user will be benefited. At present, in the local Nepalese market, good quality components are not found and there is always the fear of local businessmen cheating the rural uneducated people.

With this purpose, separate contacts were developed with the Li-ion battery manufacturer and solar panel manufacturer in China. There samples were obtained, tested and the orders finalized. Accordingly, 2,000 pcs. of Li-ion battery has been delivered and the solar panel is being delivered next month. Quality brands of other components (from India) have also been identified.

RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

Based upon the feedback from the end users, new types of fixtures have been developed.

RECOGNITION / AWARD ECCA was invited to present its experience in the Global Business Conference for Modern Lighting in the Lighting Africa 2008 event, Ghana organized by World Bank and the International Finance Corporation in May 6-8, 2008.

ECCA solar tuki program video was awarded in the Global Development Marketplace Amateur Video Contest 2008 organized by the World Bank, Washington DC, USA

SCALING

Team Leader Prachet K. Shrestha participated in the Global Social Benefit Incubator (GSBI) program (Aug 2008) conducted by the Santa Clara University, San Jose, California, USA. During the course, Business plan was developed for further scaling of the solar tuki in Nepal; which was updated after returning to Nepal.

A Clean Solar Alternative to Kerosene Lamps, Nepal Video about the Solar Tuki in Nepal
By ECCA -
Solar Tuki - Nepal
By Prachet Kumar Shrestha - Team Leader

TRAININGS CONDUCTED • Motivator training to the field staffs of INGOs / NGOs and various projects • Training camp for the youths focused on preparing the youths as promoters of alternative and renewable energy • Training camp for the children and formation of children club - which conduct small scale follow-up activities and community orientation program in their local community • Orientation on clean technology to the community, workers and staff of companies, Cooperatives, Forest Users' Group, etc. • Repair and maintenance training: for the people from the area where solar tuki are being promoted

DISTRIBUTION • The no. of solar tuki sets distributed has exceeded the original target of 800 sets. Total 1,218 sets of Solar Tuki along with 41 single lamp units were distributed through the Global Development Marketplace during the period (July 2005 - March 2007). • Additional 4,000 sets have been distributed through micro-financing scheme supported by World Bank Nepal Development Marketplace, Global Environment Facility, WWF Nepal Program, and private Nepalese companies and directly on cash.

SOCIAL IMPACT STUDY Based upon the field visits, the baseline information collected before the distribution of Solar Tuki, the post Tuki survey report and the feedback received from the village level partner organizations (through whom solar tukis are being promoted), Impact study report has been prepared. Some of the major points are: • Light: 13,000 rooms have clean, white and smokeless light • Radio: able to listen for a longer time and to a variety of programs without having to worry the increase in cost • Poverty eradication and a new economy: resource (sun) is made into an economic value, creating employment • Education: allows children to study longer, children listen to radio (are informed about current information) and stay competitive with the rest of the students. Children can now stay inside the mosquito net and study • Policy direction/Donor education: zero subsidy model, rather than providing subsidy - focus is to be made on supporting through start-up capital, quality control, central warehouse, access to credit market • Long-term infrastructure: the infrastructure created can also be used to role out new products and services. New campaign - "Solar Tuki Plus" includes mobile phone and CDMA phone (which has spread to rural areas where there is no electricity) charger, 12volt black & white TV, fan for improved cook-stove. • Environment (no fumes emission, no indoor pollution) • Better health (less amount spent in medicine, soap) • Foreign currency saving • Energy security • Reduced fire hazards

NEW APPROACH TAKEN • Instead of developing new Users' group / Saving and Credit Group and training them, linkage was established with the existing groups. These groups had been developed by various other projects (Government of Nepal/UNDP program, WWF, Winrock International, etc.). • Repair and maintenance training has now been incorporated in the regular work plan of the manufacturer. The manufacturers have now been convinced to bear this cost as well - which will support in the long-term sustainability of the solar tuki program. Through this approach, the technical skill has been transferred to the local level Solar Tuki service centre without additional cost to the consumer. The local transportation cost is borne by the user's group/trainee and the cost of food and accommodation during the training period is borne by the manufacturer. Also, now, no separate fund needs to be searched for the repair and maintenance trainings.

THE FUTURE: MOVING ONE STEP AHEAD • Focus on community charging model of solar tuki (deviation from the present house-to-house charging model)

From the experience and the feedback received from the community, we have learned that more no. of poorest of the poor people could be reached though the community charging model. In this model, one large size solar panel (say 50 Watt or 65 Watt) along with charger having many (say, 20 or 30 or 40) outlets (where lamp units brought by villagers will be connected) will be placed in a community building (say, school, ward office, etc.). People will bring their solar tuki lamp to charge there. This way, people will have to buy only the solar tuki lamp (which costs only $11 per piece) - which means, it would not be necessary for each consumer to buy the costlier solar panel ($28) (which means, poor people will have to invest less money). Thus, more no. of poor people could be reached.

Extra value addition will be the use of the solar panel in charging the local battery system so as to light the community building itself (where adult literacy class, income generation activities, etc. could be conducted during the evening hours).

In the present house-to-house charging model, each house owns 2.5 Watt solar panel to charge 2 lamp units. Cost of panel is high. They have to pay US$50 for one panel and 2 lamp units.

• New campaign of "Solar Tuki Plus"

As people have become familiar and used-to with the new technology of Solar Tuki, they are now demanding additional features. The recent introduction of mobile phone and CDMA phone and its network expansion by the Nepalese telecom companies have also influenced the demand (of solar powered phone chargers) by the rural communities (since most part of the country lacks electricity supply). "Solar Tuki Plus" package includes mobile phone and CDMA phone (which has spread to rural areas where there is no electricity) charger, 12volt black & white TV, fan for improved cook-stove.

ADDITIONAL ACTIVITIES • Long-term strategy has been developed considering the production aspect, distribution aspect and social mobilization • Understandings have been developed with different institutions (e.g. development banks, others INGOs, local savings and credit groups) for promoting as well as investing in the solar tuki • Manufacturing and distribution of the solar tuki is being developed as a self-sustaining business, for which, training for the entrepreneurs (who want to start manufacturing) has been given, concept of central warehouse has been developed • The participation of the private sector has opened the door of unlimited opportunity in scaling and sustainability. Based upon this agreement, possibility has been enhanced in including the private sector in this LIGHT FOR ALL campaign. • WWF Nepal Program has also contributed financially in the revolving fund managed by the local community group in Bardiya (Far Western Nepal) through their on-going program. The possibility of solar tuki promotion through Forest User Group Coordination Committee and using the income to support the health post was discussed. The fund from micro-financing institutes and Saving Credit Group formed by Winrock International will also be used along with support from GDM Revolving Fund • 47 sets solar tukis and 54 pcs of lamp units and 2 larger sets for adult literacy classes were promoted through Community Learning Centers (located in Dadeldhura in far west Nepal) established by UNESCO Nepal • Solar Tuki Sharing Workshop for Members of Parliament To share the knowledge and experience gained during the solar tuki promotion in the past two years, sharing workshop was organized in Kathmandu for the Members of House of Representatives on August 9, 2006. The program was attended by 23 persons including 7 Members of Parliament (MP) from the 9 districts targeted by the Government of Nepal for the "Karnali Illuminated Program" (where 60,000 solar tuki are planned to be promoted from the national budget of fiscal year 2006/07).

Progress Report
By Prachet Kumar Shrestha - Team Leader

In the period of one year (till July 2006), since the commercial launching of the LIGHT FOR ALL campaign, total 3,100 solar tukis have been promoted - around 2,600 solar tuki sets have been distributed through various local groups using the micro-financing scheme through the Revolving Fund and around 500 sets have been sold directly on cash (without micro-financing).

STATUS OF REVOLVING FUND

Total of US$ 58,000 have been already received for the Revolving Fund. Partnerships have been developed with World Bank Global Development Marketplace, World Bank Nepal Development Marketplace, Global Environment Facility, World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), and private Nepalese companies in creating revolving fund so as to reach more number of rural households.

Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.

Make a monthly recurring donation on your credit card. You can cancel at any time. Mail a paper card (via USPS or FedEx) $12 provides 1 unit of solar tuki for a student for his/her education during evening hrs $40 provides training for one person (repair/maintenance, or community mobilization) $50 provides one set of solar tuki (2 lamp units and 1 solar panel) for a household $80 provides one set of tools for local repair/maintenance service center $120 provides 10 units of solar tuki for 10 students for their education during evening hrs $200 provides installation of community charging center in a school for 20 unit lamps $500 provides installation of community charging center in a school for 50 units lamps $1,000 provides training for 20 youths $10 each month provides 10 units of solar tuki for 10 students for their education during evening hrs $12 each month provides 1 unit of solar tuki for a student for his/her education during evening hrs $17 each month provides installation of community charging center in a school for 20 unit lamps $40 each month provides training for one person (repair/maintenance, or community mobilization) $42 each month provides installation of community charging center in a school for 50 units lamps $50 each month provides one set of solar tuki (2 lamp units and 1 solar panel) for a household $80 each month provides one set of tools for local repair/maintenance service center $83 each month provides training for 20 youths This project has previously been selected as the GlobalGiving Project of the Month due to it's innovative, high-impact effects. Projects on globalgiving.org undergo compliance checks to ensure they have a bona fide charitable purpose and meet applicable laws relating to international philanthropy. Organizations listed as partners do not necessarily endorse or support any particular project listed on globalgiving.org. The GlobalGiving Foundation is a 501(c)3 organization (EIN: 30-0108263).

GlobalGiving
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Savers and Spenders
02/01/2011
Financial Planning

What makes some people focus on squirreling away a large nest egg, while others are hopelessly oblivious to reminders to save and end up in debt? It turns out that the psychology of saving is complex, and surprisingly little research has been published on the subject.

Here's what we do know, and how you might help your clients have a healthier relationship with money. Two extreme examples from my practice as a financial planner illustrate the challenge.

* The spender. A 62-year-old physician, making roughly $350,000 a year, came to me asking for a review of his finances and an evaluation of his goal of retiring in two years. After going through the foot-high pile of documents he left me, I calculated that he had a net worth of about $50,000.

In looking at his lifestyle, I observed with concern that he didn't seem to believe in delayed gratification. There was nothing I could do for him other than deliver the bad news that his goal was overly optimistic. He politely thanked me for my time, walking away with his box full of documents and unrealistic expectations. I'm guessing his thoughts weren't quite so polite.

* The saver. Another man was just a bit older than this physician and worth tens of millions of dollars. He was developing some health problems and complained about his primary care physician. When asked why he didn't see another physician, he explained that he would have to go out of network and this would cost him a higher co-pay and deductible.

I attempted to persuade him that his health was hardly a luxury item. He responded, "I know, I know," much in the same way I respond when someone comments on an unhealthy food choice I'm indulging in. He did eventually seek out a different physician when he faced a life-threatening illness.

Both of these men have an unhealthy relationship with money. The spender, lacking self-control, will work the rest of his life. The saver's excessive self-control will only ensure that he ends up as the richest man in the graveyard.

THE MILLIONAIRE NEXT DOOR

Classic economics assumes we would think much differently during purchases than we actually do. As Duke University behavioral economist Dan Ariely explains, when we buy a new car, classical economics imagines we're thinking, "How many dinners out a month will I have to miss to pay for this?" or "How many more months does this add to my retirement date?"

Instead, we get excited about that new car smell and how great we will look when our friends see us driving around the neighborhood. As we earn more money we expect nicer cars, a phenomenon psychologists call the "hedonic treadmill."

However, as Thomas Stanley and William Danko revealed in their 1996 best-selling book, The Millionaire Next Door, some of the very highest earners are thrifty. They tend to drive older cars, shop for bargains and not tout their wealth.

The millionaire next door has hopped off the "hedonic treadmill." Most studies show that we are no happier with the Lexus than we were with the Ford because we adapt our expectations quickly. By the way, did you know that a couple leasing a $60,000 Lexus every two years spends $2 million more than a couple who drives an inexpensive car for 10 years?

The most common theory about why some of us hop off the hedonic treadmill and others keep pedaling is that we learn our habits from our parents. As intuitive as that sounds, it's not true. Stanley's research has shown that the children of millionaires often need heavy doses of economic outpatient care to sustain their high consumption.

I suspect that your clients tell you about one child who is a successful saver while the other is hopelessly in debt. It appears that neither nature nor nurture alone can explain the difference. As Jason Zweig, author of the "Intelligent Investor" column for The Wall Street Journal, told me, as with all behaviors, spending habits arise from the intersection of many causes.

And while there are many complex causes that drive our behaviors, there are two very different motivators that seem to cause us to be thrifty. The first is the pain we feel from spending money. The second is the pleasure we feel from either saving or from paying less by getting a good deal.

THE PAIN OF PAYING

Tightwads experience spending as unpleasant, which holds them back, while spendthrifts simply don't feel the pain, according to "Tightwads and Spendthrifts," a 2008 study by Scott Rick, Cynthia Cryder and George Loewenstein in the Journal of Consumer Research. The authors scanned the brains of study participants who made imaginary spending decisions (in the lab). The more activity that showed up in an area of the brain called the insula, which is commonly stimulated by unpleasant experiences such as disgusting odors, the less likely the participant was to buy.

The authors hypothesized that the people with more insula activity tended to be tightwads and those who experienced less were spendthrifts. This idea was borne out when the participants answered questions about their emotions related to spending.

As Rick, of the University of Michigan, noted, there is only a very weak relationship between the answers given by parents and children, based on his research from the "tightwad-spendthrift" questionnaire. We can't really blame our parents for our bad habits. And when it comes to men and women, Rick also mentioned that there appeared to be no pattern related to gender and spending.

Instead of a family pattern, Rick found that tightwads tended to be more anxiety-prone. I've noticed this in my clients, and the opposite as well: The spenders I meet with little or no nest-eggs tend to be very optimistic about their financial future, with a strong belief that things will take care of themselves.

Are spenders more optimistic in general? "It's a reasonable hypothesis," Rick says, but there's no research to prove it at the moment.

According to his study, only children are more likely to become spenders. One theory, Rick says, is that an only child experiences less delayed gratification than his or her counterparts with siblings.

Based on their research, Rick and his colleagues designed a questionnaire to determine where people fall on the Tightwad-Spendthrift (TW-ST) Scale (see box on page 78). One strategy with clients might be to use this questionnaire to help them understand where they fit on the spending scale.

THE JOY OF SAVING

For the frugal, saving brings joy, Rick found in his study. They also enjoy a "good deal," or bargain. We all do, but savers enjoy it more

What defines a "good deal"? We need to pay less than others pay. Most people know they can find gold jewelry at "half-off," so they must get it for an even better bargain to experience this particular joy of the frugal.

As behavioral economist Meir Statman of Santa Clara University explained to me, a $70 steak will taste much better if you get it for $7, but only if you know it's a $70 steak. If you think it's really a $7 steak, it probably won't taste as good to you. For spendthrifts, spending $70 on a steak isn't painful, and they typically assume it's well worth the price. I have noticed that some people seem to prefer paying full price, perhaps for this reason.

TEACHING WILLPOWER

How to raise children to be sane about money is a subject dear to parents, but little understood. Statman cites research that shows "payment for chores enhanced economic self-efficacy in children as they matured into adults." On the other hand, he believes that giving children allowances that haven't been earned in some way can teach dependency and a sense of entitlement.

A famous experiment conducted at Stanford University back in the 1960s tested how well nursery school children delayed gratification. They were asked to pick a treat from a tray of marshmallows, cookies and pretzel sticks. They were then told they could either eat it right away or, if they waited a few minutes, they could have two of what they chose. Thus, they could double their treat if they delayed gratification.

The experiment then followed the subjects of this experiment into adulthood, finding that those able to pass this "marshmallow test" enjoyed greater success in life. Walther Mischel, the Stanford professor in charge of the experiment, said that delayed gratification could be taught to the children using mental tricks. For example, delayed gratification increased when the children were taught to think of the marshmallow as a picture surrounded by an imaginary frame. Not snacking before dinner and holding out until Christmas morning are really cognitive exercises, according to Mischel.

Mischel said that he was giving the children a mental user's manual. Willpower is just a matter of learning how to control your attention and thoughts. Understanding this can lead to great improvement. "We should do what we can to cultivate a child's joy of saving," Rick says, adding that we shouldn't simulate the pain of paying to teach children to spend less.

CAN PEOPLE CHANGE?

Rick measured the personality traits of tightwads and spendthrifts over time and found they were remarkably stable. Spending, however, can be changed to some degree. It's all in the way the buying decision is framed.

Rick notes that the participants in his studies were more likely to make a purchase if the cost were a "low five dollar fee," rather than if it were merely a "five dollar fee." Adding the word "low" changed behavior. Similarly, Ariely explained to me that people typically will enjoy a vacation more if it's prepaid up front rather than forking over the funds at the end of the vacation. When they make the payment affects their behavior.

Most of us feel better spending money on practical things, rather than luxuries. In his recent book, What Investors Really Want, Statman recounted an experiment where more women chose a spa package valued at $80 over $85 cash, although they would spend the $85 on groceries.

For savers, it's especially important to frame a purchase as practical if you want to encourage them to buy. A massage is worth the price if it reduces stress and improves health, not because it's pleasurable. A spender, on the other hand, is less likely to buy if he or she is spending cash rather than racking up credit.

While it's not easy to change someone's behavior in adulthood, "Framed!," on page 80 has some suggestions on reframing. As financial planners, we tend to encounter more savers. Reframing for the spenders, however, might be a useful tool we can pass on to our clients for helping their adult children.

Allan S. Roth is the founder of Wealth Logic in Colorado Springs, Colo., the author of How A Second Grader Beats Wall Street and an adjunct faculty member at Colorado College.

Copyright © 2008 Source Media Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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" SOT Radha Basu, Santa Clara University Center for Science, Technology, and Society "Mobile devices solving problems in ways we could never even think of doing before.
01/31/2011
Breakfast Show - KFVS-TV

THE STUDY OF 900 CURRENT AND RECENT GRADUATES FOUND THAT THE SOCIAL NETWORK GIVES PEOPLE CHANCES TO SHOW FRIENDSHIP AND COMMUNITY IN NEW WAYS. 47 PERCENT OF THOSE SURVEYED SAY FACEBOOK IS VERY IMPORTANT TO STAY IN TOUCH WITH DISTANT FRIENDS, AND 35 PERCENT SAY THE SAME FOR FAR OFF FAMILY. GENDERS TEND TO USE FACEBOOK DIFFERENTLY. MEN TEND TO POLITICIZE MORE, AND WOMEN ARE MORE LIKELY TO SHOW AFFECTION. ADLIB CHIT CHAT ADLIB CHIT CHAT SOME OF YOU DOWNLOAD APPS FOR ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES, AND TO PUT RESTAURANT REVIEWS OR SHOPPING DEALS AT YOUR FINGERTIPS. BUT THERE ARE OTHER APPS AVILABLE, THAT CAN ACTUALLY CHANGE LIVES. STEPHANIE BYARS IS HERE TO TELL US HOW THOSE WORK, WE ARE USING OUR I-PHONE FOR MORE AND MORE, A COUPLE OF WEEKS WE TOLD YOU ABOUT AN APP THAT COULD TURN YOUR PHONE INTO A HEART MONITOR! NOW MORE AND MORE LIFE CHANGING TECHNOLOGY IS POPPING UP IN THE APP STORE! nats: "green brown" LIKE MILLIONS OF OTHER AMERICANS, JEFF KRAMER IS COLOR BLIND. FORTUNATELY FOR HIM THOUGH WHEN IT COMES TO PICKING OUT HIS CLOTHES, HIS WIFE IS MORE THAN WILLING TO HELP HIM OUT. SOT Jeff Kramer, Color Blind "We've got it down to a science where I'll be walking out and she'll say, 'Stop, 'and she'll just go, 'No, ' and then you know, back in. " BUT NOW WHEN SHE'S NOT AVAILABLE, THERE IS SOMEONE OR SOME THING ELSE KRAMER CAN TURN TO, HIS PHONE. A NEW SMARTPHONE APP JUST RELEASED THAT HELPS COLOR BLIND PEOPLE SEE WHAT THEY'VE BEEN MISSING. SOT Jeff Kramer, Color Blind "Alright, now I can really, now that really jumps out. " THE DANKAM IS AN ADJUSTABLE FILTER THAT THE USER CAN CUSTOMIZE TO COMPENSATE FOR HIS OR HER DEFICIENCY. SOT Dan Kaminsky, DanKam "If you're color blind, you really just can not tell that red from that green. " DANKAM IS NAMED FOR IT'S DEVELOPER, DAN KAMINSKY. AN INTERNET SECURITY EXPERT BY DAY, KAMINSKY SAID HE BUILT THE APP TO HELP A FRIEND WHO IS COLOR BLIND, AND IS FRANKLY SHOCKED BY HOW MANY PEOPLE HE HAS ENDED UP HELPING. SOT Dan Kaminsky, DanKam "People are telling me they're in tears. " SOT Radha Basu, Santa Clara University Center for Science, Technology, and Society "Mobile devices solving problems in ways we could never even think of doing before. " RADHA BASU IS WITH SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY'S CENTER FOR SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, AND SOCIETY. SHE POINTS TO APPS THAT TURN MOBILE PHONES INTO MICROSCOPES, HEART MONITORS, HEARING AIDS, EVEN ONES THAT HELP BLIND PEOPLE NAVIGATE CITY STREETS. TRULY LIFE CHANGING, PERHAPS LIFE SAVING APPLICATIONS. SOT Radha Basu, Santa Clara University Center for Science, Technology, and Society "Problems of society that we never thought we could solve before that are starting to get addressed. " AND "STARTING" BASU SAYS, IS THE KEY WORD. DIFFERENF YOU'RE NOT COLORBLIND, YOU MAY BE WONDERING WHY YOU SHOULD CARE ABOUT AN APP LIKE THIS? WELL, BECAUSE IT'S AN EXAMPLE OF WHERE MOBILE TECHNOLOGY IS HEADING. WHAT STARTED OUT AS A WAY TO LISTEN TO MUSIC OR PLAY GAMES IS TURNING OUT TO BE SO MUCH MORE AND WE'RE JUST AT THE BEGINNING OF THE REVOLUTION. AS MUCH OF THE US PREPARES FOR ANOTHER WINTER BLAST, MANY ARE NOW SUFFERING FROM WINTER FATIGUE. WE'LL HAVE THAT STORY, AHEAD. ALSO COMING UP, THESE FOLKS ARE FINDING THEIR OWN WAY TO DEAL WITH THE SNOW. A LOOK AT THESE ICY CREATIONS, NEXT.

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New appointments for PUC, Energy Commish | View Clip
01/31/2011
Capitol Weekly

Gov. Jerry Brown appointed a new chairperson of the California Energy Commission, one of four appointments the governor made to the CEC and the state Public Utilities Commission.

To the PUC, the Democratic governor named veteran ratepayer advocate and attorney Michael Florio and Catherine Sandoval, a law professor at Santa Clara University and a telecommunications expert.

Brown did not fill a third vacancy on the five-member PUC, an opening made vacant by his earlier decision to move Commissioner Nancy Ryan to the agency's executive staff.

There also was no indication of whether Brown would select a new president of the PUC. John Geesman, a former Energy Commission executive, has been viewed as a leading for an appointment to the PUC.

At the Energy Commission, Brown named Commissioner Bob Weisenmiller as the new chair effective Feb. 6, filling the position currently held by Karen Douglas. The governor also appointed Carla Peterman, a renewable energy expert from UC Berkeley, to the commission.

The appointments, which require Senate confirmation, were announced by Brown's office. Biographical sketches of the commissioners are available here.

Eds: Updates earlier with action by governor's office.

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Quick sketches of Brown's selections | View Clip
01/31/2011
Capitol Weekly

From the governor's office:

Michael Florio, 58 of Oakland, has been appointed to the Public Utilities Commission. The senior attorney for The Utility Reform Network since 1978. Florio is a member of California Conference of Public Utility Counsel. He was also a member of the board of governors of the California Independent System Operator from 1997 to 2005. Florio holds a J.D. from New York University School of Law, a M.P.P. from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University and a B.A. from Bowling Green State University. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $128,109. Florio is a Democrat.

Catherine Sandoval, 50, of Campbell, has been appointed to the California Public Utilities Commission. She has worked as an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law since 2004. Sandoval previously served as undersecretary and senior policy advisor for housing with the Business, Transportation and Housing Agency from 2001 to 2004. She was vice president and general counsel with Z-Spanish Media Corporation from 1999 to 2001 and was the director of the Office of Communications Business Opportunities for the Federal Communications Commission from 1994 to 1999. Sandoval was an associate with Munger, Tolles & Olson from 1991 to 1994. She earned a J.D. from Stanford Law School, a Master of Letters in political science from Oxford, where she was a Rhodes Scholar, and a B.A. from Yale. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $128,109. Sandoval is a Democrat.

Governor Brown also announced the following appointments to the California Energy Commission.

Robert Weisenmiller, 62, of Berkeley, has been appointed to the California Energy Commission. He will serve as chair of the commission at the conclusion of the current chair's term, effective February 6, 2011. Weisenmiller was a commissioner with the California Energy Commission from 2010 to 2011. He was a co-founder and executive vice president of MRW & Associates from 1986 to 2010 and was a co-founder and executive vice president of Independent Power Corporation from 1982 to 1986. He was an assistant to a commissioner, manager of the Special Projects Office and director of the Office of Policy Development and Program Evaluation with the California Energy Commission from 1977 to 1982. Weisenmiller holds a Ph.D. in chemistry and a M.S. in energy and resources from the University of California, Berkeley and a B.S. in chemistry from Providence College. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $128,109. Weisenmiller is registered decline-to-state.

Carla Peterman, 32, of Oakland, has been appointed to the California Energy Commission. She is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of California, Berkeley and currently serves on the board of directors for the Utility Reform Network. Peterman has conducted extensive research on solar photovoltaic markets and climate change, including co-authoring a series of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory publications on cost and deployment trends in the U.S. solar photovoltaic market. She has conducted research at the University of California Energy Institute at Haas since 2006 and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory from 2008 to 2010. She was a business analyst with Isles from 2004 to 2005 and was an associate focused on energy financing in the investment banking division of Lehman Brothers from 2002 to 2004. Peterman holds a B.A. in history from Howard University and an M.S. in environmental change and management and an M.B.A. from Oxford University, where she was a Rhodes Scholar. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $128,109. Peterman is a Democrat.

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Mixed Greens: Echelon and Serious Materials; Tendril and Westinghouse; Fallbrook and TRW | View Clip
01/31/2011
Greentech Media

One of the oldest names in building networking is linking up with one of the newest names in management.

Echelon, which has been selling power line networking equipment and other building management tools, said it will integrate the SeriousEnergy Manager from Serious Materials into some of its offerings and resell Serious' software-as-a-service through its regular channels.

Serious got its start in green building materials but last year moved into building management tools with the acquisition of Valence Energy, which spun out of Santa Clara University. Serious says its service can trim power bills in commercial buildings by 20 percent or more. The tool primarily analyzes building energy consumption, but Serious hopes to add automation.

Like others in this space, expect Serious to link its software tool to demand response/demand management services and add light control to the mix. Right now, the tool mostly ferrets out inefficiencies with air conditioning. Echelon, along with building controls, has tools for controlling streetlights. None dare call it conspiracy.

Elsewhere:

--Whirlpool has agreed to adopt technology from Tendril so that its smart appliances will connect to home energy management systems and demand response services. Do appliances need to be smart? Some like Vinod Khosla say no. If you can reduce power consumption in appliances enough, there's not much left for active networking and HANs to accomplish. Swapping gas pilot lights for electronic ignition reduced home power consumption in California by nearly ten percent, some have said.

On the other hand, networking makes it easier to shift certain tasks--such as defrosting and high-heat drying--to off-peak times. If networking is cheap enough, why not.

“This will forever change how consumers interact with their appliances and how they conserve energy in their homes," said Adrian Tuck, CEO of Tendril in a prepared statement.

A new relationship with your Toast-R-Oven awaits you. Expect to hear more at Distributech .

--TRW Automotive holdings has agreed to explore opportunities for the variable transmission coined by Fallbrook Technologies. Fallbrook raised $39 million toward the end of last year. It also filed preliminary papers for an IPO.

--Italy's MX Solar announced it has started running modules out of its New Jersey factory. The factory can currently crank out 65 megawatts of modules a year and will epxand to 130 megawatts by August. New Jersey is the second largest solar market in the U.S. New Jersey apparently offered a bevy of tax incentives to lure MX, but who isn't. Whether clean can revive manufacturing in the U.S. is a lively, active debate.

--Finally, Cisco teamed up with Ecotality on car charging. Ecotality's Blink charger will link to Cisco's home energy  manager. Like a few other car charging companies, Ecotality hopes to get consumers to sign up for subscription services. The company, however, seems to be taking a more realistic approach than many others. See more here.

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Targeting the next crime | View Clip
01/31/2011
Star Tribune - Online

Ryan Hughes, a young, spiky-haired computer analyst for the Minneapolis Police Department, pulls up a map of the Twin Cities on his screen.

"Here, here, here," he begins, pointing to six red dots. Each marks a robbery probably committed by the same man.

"And here," Hughes continues, pointing to a dot just northeast of Minneapolis, "is where I predicted he would go next."

Simple as a crime map, seemingly as far-fetched as ESP, such scenes are becoming more common. Police departments from Minneapolis to Los Angeles are turning to the emerging science of using recent crime data to predict where criminals will strike next.

The potentially revolutionary step could fundamentally alter the nature of police work.

The idea is that everyone, even criminals, are creatures of habit. With enough information about past crimes, it's possible to forecast their future target.

"We usually look at the last week and say, 'This is what happened in the last week,'" said Minneapolis Chief Tim Dolan. "Well we've added to that, saying, 'This is what we think's going to happen next week.'"

That kind of thinking has just begun in Minneapolis, but Dolan says it's already paid off in north and southwest Minneapolis, areas that led the city last year in reducing overall crime rates.

The strategy looks slightly different everywhere it's used, but predictive policing relies mainly on a police department's ability to accumulate deep databases of crime information that detail time, location, methods and numerous other bits of revealing data. Crunched by a computer analyst, the numbers reveal patterns.

That's the task facing a crew of five such crime analysts who work out of a second floor office in City Hall. Every day, they pore over recent crime data, slicing it different ways and sometimes using software to crunch it further. If a pattern emerges, they mark it down for consideration on an internal crime map that gets passed along to the chief for his weekly meeting with top inspectors and lieutenants.

A handful of police departments around the country have spent tens of thousands of dollars on more advanced software, or are working with university researchers and technology companies on algorithms to help them spot crime trends. It's akin to predicting where an earthquake's aftershocks will be felt, says a Santa Clara University mathematician developing formulas for such police work.

As for Hughes' prediction of where the Minneapolis robber would strike next? It was made using free software distributed by the National Institute of Justice. The software examines the location and timing of each crime to draw its conclusions. The estimate of the robber's next target turned out to be a mile off. But in the world of crime prediction, that's still counted as a success -- the kind of information that could put a patrol car close to the action.

Hughes, who hopes the Minneapolis department will eventually use more high-powered software for predictive policing, said that his maps have accurately predicted the locations of 45 percent of the city's violent crime.

"I have a better batting average than Joe Mauer," Hughes said.

Stocking Pop-Tarts

To better understand predictive policing, consider the Pop-Tarts story.

Businesses such as Wal-Mart have long anticipated customers' needs based on weather and time of year. Coastal stores knew that as hurricanes approached, customers stocked up on bottled water and duct tape. Those things made sense, but looking more closely at customer data and comparing it to weather patterns, analysts at Wal-Mart noticed that customers anticipating a hurricane also bought more strawberry Pop-Tarts.

It's the sort of anecdote that the emerging industry of predictive policing embraces because it shows how analyzing data can turn up surprises, things that can be used to predict future behavior.

The promise of doing the same thing with crime has prompted some large police departments such as Los Angeles to invest in partnerships with university researchers to devise predictive algorithms or formulas. As exotic as it sounds, it's just the next step in the changing world of police work, said William Bratton, the celebrated former chief of police in Los Angeles and New York City.

"It's really the continuation of the evolution of policing," Bratton said.

Starting in the 1990s, when police began using crime reports to identify hot spots, the focus has been on putting police officers near high-crime areas. Putting laptops in squad cars and publishing crime maps helped shorten response time. Now, police departments can quickly analyze a lot of crime data to spot crime trends as they're occurring.

"So after two or three incidents we can put a stop to it instead of waiting for 20 or 30," said Bratton, who now works as an independent security consultant.

"This is potentially labor-saving," he said. "That's very important because as we're going into very tough times with public financing, it's going to become more and more critical."

The hope is that predictive policing will help supplant random patrolling, which studies have shown doesn't work well.

"It's not enough to send people out and expect that they will have an impact on crime," said Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum in Washington.

Narrowing the field

Minneapolis police estimate that half of the city's most serious crime takes place on 6 percent of its land area. Many of the worst areas are under video surveillance, as the city expands its use of closed circuit cameras. But even within those high crime areas, there might be a few blocks that are particularly rough on any given week, said Sgt. Jeff Egge, the head of the department's Crime Analysis Unit.

His staff of five analysts make predictions by printing color-coded maps that show blocks or small sectors where they expect crimes such as burglary, robbery and aggravated assaults. The techniques are less effective for "episodic" crimes such as homicide, which are more random.

The strategy adds a predictive element to the department's CODEFOR program, begun in 1998 to map the city's crime hot spots.

"When we started CODEFOR, we looked at where crime occurred last week," said Deputy Chief Rob Allen. "What we've asked people to do is to focus more on where we anticipate crime is going to occur next week. We've made it sort of future-oriented rather than assuming the same patterns will continue."

It's had its successes, police say.

Last October, two felons walked into the Dunn Brothers coffee shop in Uptown, pistol-whipped one of the two clerks, tied them up in a back room and took a bag of cash.

Witnesses called 911. Police arrived in time to catch the robbers. The two now face federal charges due to their criminal histories.

Fifth Precinct Inspector Ed Frizell said it was no coincidence that officers arrived so quickly. Fifth Precinct officers were looking out for storefront robberies along Lake Street as part of the precinct's predictive analysis.

"The officers of the Fifth Precinct have absolutely made this thing work," Frizell said. "They have total buy-in."

Frizell said he knows the color-coded maps issued by the Crime Analysis Unit are taken seriously by his patrol officers because he sees them taking notes off of fresh maps hung in the precinct.

It's easier than handing an officer a stack of the latest intelligence, said Lt. Jeff Rugel, who runs the Gang Enforcement Team out of the department's new strategic information center. "A commander issuing orders can say, 'See where it's red? Go be where it's red,' " Rugel said. "It makes it very easy to see what's going on as opposed to charts and charts of data."

It can be tough to gauge the success of predictive policing because analysts don't know whether added police presence at predicted hot spots deters the predicted crime.

"You can't measure things that don't happen," said Capt. Amelia Huffman, commander of the criminal investigations division.

If a prediction helps police catch someone doing a lot of crimes, the effect on local crime rates can be remarkable. For example, said Huffman, if a prolific burglar is captured, burglary dots on the weekly crime maps will "melt away."

Plain common sense?

Sometimes, predictive policing looks a lot more like common sense than science fiction, said Egge, who gave the example of how his unit analyzed years of data on burglaries that occurred each year during the week the University of Minnesota started classes.

Laptops, GPS units, iPods and other expensive items are often left in cars or hallways as students unpack, and many are stolen.

This past fall, crime analysts Hughes and Susan McPhee came up with maps of the Dinkytown area that highlighted the spots that historically have the most crime during opening week. Then crime prevention specialists warned students in that area to use caution while officers kept an eye on the worst spots. Crimes were down sharply, police said.

Last month, Chief Dolan spoke at the grand opening of a police intelligence center where a few officers can monitor hundreds of live video feeds from across the city on three movie screens. They just have to know where to look.

Dolan said predictive policing has just begun in Minneapolis and will grow as the department becomes more accustomed to it. In the end, he said, it's just one more tool to put police where they should be.

"The most efficient thing we can do is prevent a crime," Dolan said. "Solving a crime is all good once a crime's occurred. It is much more efficient to be trying to prevent crime for a community."

Matt McKinney • 612-217-1747

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Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all | View Clip
01/31/2011
San Bernardino Sun - Online

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Photo by Justin Sullivan, .

SV 20/20

Just about everyone wants to see Facebook go public. Everyone, it seems, except CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Investors are hot for the company's initial public offering of stock and would rush to buy Facebook shares like teenage girls to a Justin Bieber concert. Facebook employees could reel in buckets of money. And the fragile economic psyche of Silicon Valley, which hasn't enjoyed a blockbuster IPO since Google's in 2004, would get a needed jolt of confidence.

But the young entrepreneur who founded Facebook in his Harvard dorm room seven years ago has repeatedly signaled his reluctance to have an IPO. He is said to prefer the privacy and control Facebook now enjoys, freed from the demands of Wall Street and quarterly financial reports and the daily performance of a publicly traded stock. With a private company he can maintain his singular focus on building the largest social organization in human history.

More than just his own penchant for control, Zuckerberg's aversion to an IPO also illustrates how the pros and cons of going public are changing, at least for Facebook and a few other hot social media companies. So much private investment is available to these companies that the primary benefit of going public -- raising capital -- is less crucial.

At the same time, the rise of exchanges that sell privately held stock has helped to quiet the demand from investors and company employees for an IPO. That leaves sharply focused founders like

Zuckerberg, Zynga's Mark Pincus and Twitter's Biz Stone freer to pursue their own vision.

"Look at it this way, if you have a vision the rest of the market can't see or understand or begin to comprehend, it's pretty hard to sell it" to the market, said Charlene Li, founder of the Altimeter Group, a technology research and consulting firm. "The nice thing about being private is you can hold onto that vision and not have to share it with anybody."

Yet Zuckerberg is fast approaching the point where for the first time he won't have the power to set all the rules. The Palo Alto company acknowledged last week that sometime this year it will exceed 500 shareholders, meaning the company under federal law must begin disclosing its financial results no later than April 2012. Even so, Zuckerberg could defy convention and defer selling stock to the public, delaying the distraction of an IPO for at least awhile, although few think he will hold off an IPO forever.

It wouldn't be the first time he has asserted his independence. When he was all of 22, he scuttled a $1 billion sale of Facebook to Yahoo when the bigger company tried to renege on his terms.

But there would be costs to delaying an IPO, like an inability to compensate employees through public stock, or to use public Facebook stock to buy other companies. The professional networking site LinkedIn elected to take the IPO plunge Thursday, when it notified regulators it plans to go public this year.

Facebook has taken steps that hint at how it might handle a public offering. For instance, Facebook disclosed that a recent $1.5 billion investment led by Goldman Sachs was in "Facebook Class A common stock," suggesting that like Google's founders in 2004, Facebook would create "Class B" stock that would have additional voting rights per share, allowing Zuckerberg and other insiders to retain more control, said Stephen Diamond, a securities law expert at the Santa Clara University School of Law. The Goldman investment pegged Facebook at an eye-popping valuation of $50 billion, but trading of its private shares on secondary markets suggest a valuation above $70 billion, analysts say.

Many experts say Zuckerberg will ultimately be forced to sell Facebook stock to the public, if only to gain a currency -- Facebook public stock -- to buy the talent and technology from other companies that Facebook will need as it grows, and to compensate employees through stock they can easily sell.

But some Zuckerberg watchers aren't so sure.

"Mark is an extremely focused guy," said Lou Kerner, a veteran tech analyst with Wedbush Securities, who doesn't foresee a Facebook IPO in the near future. "He cares more about the product, the user experience and utility than he does about anything else."

Zuckerberg retains the urgency of the founder of a small startup, say people who know the Facebook CEO, focused on building products and his long-term vision for Facebook, rather than dealing with Wall Street and worrying about the company's daily stock price.

"Attention is a finite resource, and if Mark is off doing a road show (for investors), he's not going to be there working on a product," said Paul Buchheit, a valley veteran who recently left Facebook to work as a venture capitalist. "I think there is a great sense of urgency, so yeah, if the attention were shifted from the product off to something else that isn't as important, that would be a mistake."

And for Facebook shares to be listed on a public exchange such as the Nasdaq, Zuckerberg would have to consent to a board of directors half made up of company outsiders, Diamond said. Having to justify Facebook's daily price on a stock exchange would bring other limitations.

"You are defining yourself in public. It's like running for political office," Diamond said. "Clearly, Zuckerberg is a bright guy and they've gotten out of the gate really quickly, but it's not clear whether he's ready to lead a public company. I've yet to see him wear anything but a T-shirt. When he has to do his first congressional hearing, he can't wear a T-shirt."

Facebook has been courted over the years by suitors ranging from Microsoft to Viacom, but Zuckerberg's dalliance with Yahoo in 2006 appears to be the closest he ever got to being acquired. And the near-sale of the company shows how determined he is not to compromise his vision for Facebook.

At the time, Facebook was still a relatively small social network whose membership was limited to college students. According to people with direct knowledge of the offer who spoke on condition of anonymity, Yahoo's board authorized spending $1 billion -- Zuckerberg's firm price for Facebook -- in a deal code-named "Project Fraternity." But after the Yahoo board approved the bid in a conference call, then-CEO Terry Semel decided to go back to the young entrepreneur and knock the offer down to $850 million.

Zuckerberg walked.

"He went radio-silent," according to one person close to the deal, who said Zuckerberg stopped returning Yahoo's phone calls. "It was a giant middle finger" to Yahoo.

Stories like those suggest that Zuckerberg won't do what everyone wants, unless it is consistent with his vision for Facebook. And the rise in recent months of secondary markets like SharesPost and SecondMarket means that Facebook and other social media and networking companies like Zynga and Twitter have less pressure to go public because venture investors and early employees can cash out company stock on those secondary markets. Tech startups such as Microsoft and Google did not have that outlet in previous decades.

Since its launch in June 2009, San Bruno-based SharesPost has mushroomed to more than 50,000 registered buyers and sellers, fueled by the intense interest in Silicon Valley social networking companies like Facebook. In a recent auction of Facebook stock, for instance, far more buyers than it could accommodate tried to get in on the deal.

"Obviously, it demonstrates there is a tremendous amount of demand among the broad universe of investors who want to invest in Facebook," said David Weir, the CEO of SharesPost, a secondary market website where buyers and sellers can meet up and trade private company stock online. "What the secondary market does is provide an interim step for companies that have attractive growth prospects, so they can time their public listing in a much more disciplined and measured way."

Not everyone sees the secondary markets as benign, and the Securities and Exchange Commission has signaled that it will review the intense activity there. "I have to believe the SEC didn't expect it was going to come down the way it did," said Brian Erb, a partner with the San Francisco firm Ropes & Gray who specializes in securities law.

But if and when Facebook does have its IPO, it will be a significant milestone for Silicon Valley, and for the social networking and media industry in general.

"It'll be a signal this will be a real market," Li said. "It will be a sign that it's maturing into something that is part of everyday business, in the same way that Google's IPO was a sign that it was maturing as a company."

Contact Mike Swift at 408-271-3648. Follow him at Twitter.com/swiftstories.

Return to Top



Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all | View Clip
01/30/2011
Oroville Mercury-Register

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Photo by Justin Sullivan, Getty Images.

Just about everyone wants to see Facebook go public. Everyone, it seems, except CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Investors are hot for the company's initial public offering of stock and would rush to buy Facebook shares like teenage girls to a Justin Bieber concert. Facebook employees could reel in buckets of money. And the fragile economic psyche of Silicon Valley, which hasn't enjoyed a blockbuster IPO since Google's in 2004, would get a needed jolt of confidence.

But the young entrepreneur who founded Facebook in his Harvard dorm room seven years ago has repeatedly signaled his reluctance to have an IPO. He is said to prefer the privacy and control Facebook now enjoys, freed from the demands of Wall Street and quarterly financial reports and the daily performance of a publicly traded stock. With a private company he can maintain his singular focus on building the largest social organization in human history.

More than just his own penchant for control, Zuckerberg's aversion to an IPO also illustrates how the pros and cons of going public are changing, at least for Facebook and a few other hot social media companies. So much private investment is available to these companies that the primary benefit of going public -- raising capital -- is less crucial.

At the same time, the rise of exchanges that sell privately held stock has helped to quiet the demand from investors and company employees for an IPO. That leaves sharply focused founders like

Zuckerberg, Zynga's Mark Pincus and Twitter's Biz Stone freer to pursue their own vision.

"Look at it this way, if you have a vision the rest of the market can't see or understand or begin to comprehend, it's pretty hard to sell it" to the market, said Charlene Li, founder of the Altimeter Group, a technology research and consulting firm. "The nice thing about being private is you can hold onto that vision and not have to share it with anybody."

Yet Zuckerberg is fast approaching the point where for the first time he won't have the power to set all the rules. The Palo Alto company acknowledged last week that sometime this year it will exceed 500 shareholders, meaning the company under federal law must begin disclosing its financial results no later than April 2012. Even so, Zuckerberg could defy convention and defer selling stock to the public, delaying the distraction of an IPO for at least awhile, although few think he will hold off an IPO forever.

It wouldn't be the first time he has asserted his independence. When he was all of 22, he scuttled a $1 billion sale of Facebook to Yahoo when the bigger company tried to renege on his terms.

But there would be costs to delaying an IPO, like an inability to compensate employees through public stock, or to use public Facebook stock to buy other companies. The professional networking site LinkedIn elected to take the IPO plunge Thursday, when it notified regulators it plans to go public this year.

Facebook has taken steps that hint at how it might handle a public offering. For instance, Facebook disclosed that a recent $1.5 billion investment led by Goldman Sachs was in "Facebook Class A common stock," suggesting that like Google's founders in 2004, Facebook would create "Class B" stock that would have additional voting rights per share, allowing Zuckerberg and other insiders to retain more control, said Stephen Diamond, a securities law expert at the Santa Clara University School of Law. The Goldman investment pegged Facebook at an eye-popping valuation of $50 billion, but trading of its private shares on secondary markets suggest a valuation above $70 billion, analysts say.

Many experts say Zuckerberg will ultimately be forced to sell Facebook stock to the public, if only to gain a currency -- Facebook public stock -- to buy the talent and technology from other companies that Facebook will need as it grows, and to compensate employees through stock they can easily sell.

But some Zuckerberg watchers aren't so sure.

"Mark is an extremely focused guy," said Lou Kerner, a veteran tech analyst with Wedbush Securities, who doesn't foresee a Facebook IPO in the near future. "He cares more about the product, the user experience and utility than he does about anything else."

Zuckerberg retains the urgency of the founder of a small startup, say people who know the Facebook CEO, focused on building products and his long-term vision for Facebook, rather than dealing with Wall Street and worrying about the company's daily stock price.

"Attention is a finite resource, and if Mark is off doing a road show (for investors), he's not going to be there working on a product," said Paul Buchheit, a valley veteran who recently left Facebook to work as a venture capitalist. "I think there is a great sense of urgency, so yeah, if the attention were shifted from the product off to something else that isn't as important, that would be a mistake."

And for Facebook shares to be listed on a public exchange such as the Nasdaq, Zuckerberg would have to consent to a board of directors half made up of company outsiders, Diamond said. Having to justify Facebook's daily price on a stock exchange would bring other limitations.

"You are defining yourself in public. It's like running for political office," Diamond said. "Clearly, Zuckerberg is a bright guy and they've gotten out of the gate really quickly, but it's not clear whether he's ready to lead a public company. I've yet to see him wear anything but a T-shirt. When he has to do his first congressional hearing, he can't wear a T-shirt."

Facebook has been courted over the years by suitors ranging from Microsoft to Viacom, but Zuckerberg's dalliance with Yahoo in 2006 appears to be the closest he ever got to being acquired. And the near-sale of the company shows how determined he is not to compromise his vision for Facebook.

At the time, Facebook was still a relatively small social network whose membership was limited to college students. According to people with direct knowledge of the offer who spoke on condition of anonymity, Yahoo's board authorized spending $1 billion -- Zuckerberg's firm price for Facebook -- in a deal code-named "Project Fraternity." But after the Yahoo board approved the bid in a conference call, then-CEO Terry Semel decided to go back to the young entrepreneur and knock the offer down to $850 million.

Zuckerberg walked.

"He went radio-silent," according to one person close to the deal, who said Zuckerberg stopped returning Yahoo's phone calls. "It was a giant middle finger" to Yahoo.

Stories like those suggest that Zuckerberg won't do what everyone wants, unless it is consistent with his vision for Facebook. And the rise in recent months of secondary markets like SharesPost and SecondMarket means that Facebook and other social media and networking companies like Zynga and Twitter have less pressure to go public because venture investors and early employees can cash out company stock on those secondary markets. Tech startups such as Microsoft and Google did not have that outlet in previous decades.

Since its launch in June 2009, San Bruno-based SharesPost has mushroomed to more than 50,000 registered buyers and sellers, fueled by the intense interest in Silicon Valley social networking companies like Facebook. In a recent auction of Facebook stock, for instance, far more buyers than it could accommodate tried to get in on the deal.

"Obviously, it demonstrates there is a tremendous amount of demand among the broad universe of investors who want to invest in Facebook," said David Weir, the CEO of SharesPost, a secondary market website where buyers and sellers can meet up and trade private company stock online. "What the secondary market does is provide an interim step for companies that have attractive growth prospects, so they can time their public listing in a much more disciplined and measured way."

Not everyone sees the secondary markets as benign, and the Securities and Exchange Commission has signaled that it will review the intense activity there. "I have to believe the SEC didn't expect it was going to come down the way it did," said Brian Erb, a partner with the San Francisco firm Ropes & Gray who specializes in securities law.

But if and when Facebook does have its IPO, it will be a significant milestone for Silicon Valley, and for the social networking and media industry in general.

"It'll be a signal this will be a real market," Li said. "It will be a sign that it's maturing into something that is part of everyday business, in the same way that Google's IPO was a sign that it was maturing as a company."

Contact Mike Swift at 408-271-3648. Follow him at Twitter.com/swiftstories.

Return to Top



Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all | View Clip
01/30/2011
American Chronicle

Jan. 30--Just about everyone wants to see Facebook go public. Everyone, it seems, except CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Investors are hot for the company's initial public offering of stock and would rush to buy Facebook shares like teenage girls to a Justin Bieber concert. Facebook employees could reel in buckets of money. And the fragile economic psyche of Silicon Valley, which hasn't enjoyed a blockbuster IPO since Google's in 2004, would get a needed jolt of confidence.

But the young entrepreneur who founded Facebook in his Harvard dorm room seven years ago has repeatedly signaled his reluctance to have an IPO. He is said to prefer the privacy and control Facebook now enjoys, freed from the demands of Wall Street and quarterly financial reports and the daily performance of a publicly traded stock. With a private company he can maintain his singular focus on building the largest social organization in human history.

More than just his own penchant for control, Zuckerberg's aversion to an IPO also illustrates how the pros and cons of going public are changing, at least for Facebook and a few other hot social media companies. So much private investment is available to these companies that the primary benefit of going public -- raising capital -- is less crucial.

At the same time, the rise of exchanges that sell privately held stock has helped to quiet the demand from investors and company employees for an IPO. That leaves sharply focused founders like

Zuckerberg, Zynga's Mark Pincus and Twitter's Biz Stone freer to pursue their own vision.

"Look at it this way, if you have a vision the rest of the market can't see or understand or begin to comprehend, it's pretty hard to sell it" to the market, said Charlene Li, founder of the Altimeter Group, a technology research and consulting firm. "The nice thing about being private is you can hold onto that vision and not have to share it with anybody."

Yet Zuckerberg is fast approaching the point where for the first time he won't have the power to set all the rules. The Palo Alto company acknowledged last week that sometime this year it will exceed 500 shareholders, meaning the company under federal law must begin disclosing its financial results no later than April 2012. Even so, Zuckerberg could defy convention and defer selling stock to the public, delaying the distraction of an IPO for at least awhile, although few think he will hold off an IPO forever.

It wouldn't be the first time he has asserted his independence. When he was all of 22, he scuttled a $1 billion sale of Facebook to Yahoo when the bigger company tried to renege on his terms.

But there would be costs to delaying an IPO, like an inability to compensate employees through public stock, or to use public Facebook stock to buy other companies. The professional networking site LinkedIn elected to take the IPO plunge Thursday, when it notified regulators it plans to go public this year.

Facebook has taken steps that hint at how it might handle a public offering. For instance, Facebook disclosed that a recent $1.5 billion investment led by Goldman Sachs was in "Facebook Class A common stock," suggesting that like Google's founders in 2004, Facebook would create "Class B" stock that would have additional voting rights per share, allowing Zuckerberg and other insiders to retain more control, said Stephen Diamond, a securities law expert at the Santa Clara University School of Law. The Goldman investment pegged Facebook at an eye-popping valuation of $50 billion, but trading of its private shares on secondary markets suggest a valuation above $70 billion, analysts say.

Many experts say Zuckerberg will ultimately be forced to sell Facebook stock to the public, if only to gain a currency -- Facebook public stock -- to buy the talent and technology from other companies that Facebook will need as it grows, and to compensate employees through stock they can easily sell.

But some Zuckerberg watchers aren't so sure.

"Mark is an extremely focused guy," said Lou Kerner, a veteran tech analyst with Wedbush Securities, who doesn't foresee a Facebook IPO in the near future. "He cares more about the product, the user experience and utility than he does about anything else."

Zuckerberg retains the urgency of the founder of a small startup, say people who know the Facebook CEO, focused on building products and his long-term vision for Facebook, rather than dealing with Wall Street and worrying about the company's daily stock price.

"Attention is a finite resource, and if Mark is off doing a road show (for investors), he's not going to be there working on a product," said Paul Buchheit, a valley veteran who recently left Facebook to work as a venture capitalist. "I think there is a great sense of urgency, so yeah, if the attention were shifted from the product off to something else that isn't as important, that would be a mistake."

And for Facebook shares to be listed on a public exchange such as the Nasdaq, Zuckerberg would have to consent to a board of directors half made up of company outsiders, Diamond said. Having to justify Facebook's daily price on a stock exchange would bring other limitations.

"You are defining yourself in public. It's like running for political office," Diamond said. "Clearly, Zuckerberg is a bright guy and they've gotten out of the gate really quickly, but it's not clear whether he's ready to lead a public company. I've yet to see him wear anything but a T-shirt. When he has to do his first congressional hearing, he can't wear a T-shirt."

Facebook has been courted over the years by suitors ranging from Microsoft to Viacom, but Zuckerberg's dalliance with Yahoo in 2006 appears to be the closest he ever got to being acquired. And the near-sale of the company shows how determined he is not to compromise his vision for Facebook.

At the time, Facebook was still a relatively small social network whose membership was limited to college students. According to people with direct knowledge of the offer who spoke on condition of anonymity, Yahoo's board authorized spending $1 billion -- Zuckerberg's firm price for Facebook -- in a deal code-named "Project Fraternity." But after the Yahoo board approved the bid in a conference call, then-CEO Terry Semel decided to go back to the young entrepreneur and knock the offer down to $850 million.

Zuckerberg walked.

"He went radio-silent," according to one person close to the deal, who said Zuckerberg stopped returning Yahoo's phone calls. "It was a giant middle finger" to Yahoo.

Stories like those suggest that Zuckerberg won't do what everyone wants, unless it is consistent with his vision for Facebook. And the rise in recent months of secondary markets like SharesPost and SecondMarket means that Facebook and other social media and networking companies like Zynga and Twitter have less pressure to go public because venture investors and early employees can cash out company stock on those secondary markets. Tech startups such as Microsoft and Google did not have that outlet in previous decades.

Since its launch in June 2009, San Bruno-based SharesPost has mushroomed to more than 50,000 registered buyers and sellers, fueled by the intense interest in Silicon Valley social networking companies like Facebook. In a recent auction of Facebook stock, for instance, far more buyers than it could accommodate tried to get in on the deal.

"Obviously, it demonstrates there is a tremendous amount of demand among the broad universe of investors who want to invest in Facebook," said David Weir, the CEO of SharesPost, a secondary market website where buyers and sellers can meet up and trade private company stock online. "What the secondary market does is provide an interim step for companies that have attractive growth prospects, so they can time their public listing in a much more disciplined and measured way."

Not everyone sees the secondary markets as benign, and the Securities and Exchange Commission has signaled that it will review the intense activity there. "I have to believe the SEC didn't expect it was going to come down the way it did," said Brian Erb, a partner with the San Francisco firm Ropes & Gray who specializes in securities law.

But if and when Facebook does have its IPO, it will be a significant milestone for Silicon Valley, and for the social networking and media industry in general.

"It'll be a signal this will be a real market," Li said. "It will be a sign that it's maturing into something that is part of everyday business, in the same way that Google's IPO was a sign that it was maturing as a company."

Contact Mike Swift at 408-271-3648. Follow him at Twitter.com/swiftstories.

-----

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Copyright (c) 2011, San Jose Mercury News, Calif.

Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all | View Clip
01/30/2011
Inland Valley Daily Bulletin - Online

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Photo by Justin Sullivan, .

SV 20/20

Just about everyone wants to see Facebook go public. Everyone, it seems, except CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Investors are hot for the company's initial public offering of stock and would rush to buy Facebook shares like teenage girls to a Justin Bieber concert. Facebook employees could reel in buckets of money. And the fragile economic psyche of Silicon Valley, which hasn't enjoyed a blockbuster IPO since Google's in 2004, would get a needed jolt of confidence.

But the young entrepreneur who founded Facebook in his Harvard dorm room seven years ago has repeatedly signaled his reluctance to have an IPO. He is said to prefer the privacy and control Facebook now enjoys, freed from the demands of Wall Street and quarterly financial reports and the daily performance of a publicly traded stock. With a private company he can maintain his singular focus on building the largest social organization in human history.

More than just his own penchant for control, Zuckerberg's aversion to an IPO also illustrates how the pros and cons of going public are changing, at least for Facebook and a few other hot social media companies. So much private investment is available to these companies that the primary benefit of going public -- raising capital -- is less crucial.

At the same time, the rise of exchanges that sell privately held stock has helped to quiet the demand from investors and company employees for an IPO. That leaves sharply focused founders like

Zuckerberg, Zynga's Mark Pincus and Twitter's Biz Stone freer to pursue their own vision.

"Look at it this way, if you have a vision the rest of the market can't see or understand or begin to comprehend, it's pretty hard to sell it" to the market, said Charlene Li, founder of the Altimeter Group, a technology research and consulting firm. "The nice thing about being private is you can hold onto that vision and not have to share it with anybody."

Yet Zuckerberg is fast approaching the point where for the first time he won't have the power to set all the rules. The Palo Alto company acknowledged last week that sometime this year it will exceed 500 shareholders, meaning the company under federal law must begin disclosing its financial results no later than April 2012. Even so, Zuckerberg could defy convention and defer selling stock to the public, delaying the distraction of an IPO for at least awhile, although few think he will hold off an IPO forever.

It wouldn't be the first time he has asserted his independence. When he was all of 22, he scuttled a $1 billion sale of Facebook to Yahoo when the bigger company tried to renege on his terms.

But there would be costs to delaying an IPO, like an inability to compensate employees through public stock, or to use public Facebook stock to buy other companies. The professional networking site LinkedIn elected to take the IPO plunge Thursday, when it notified regulators it plans to go public this year.

Facebook has taken steps that hint at how it might handle a public offering. For instance, Facebook disclosed that a recent $1.5 billion investment led by Goldman Sachs was in "Facebook Class A common stock," suggesting that like Google's founders in 2004, Facebook would create "Class B" stock that would have additional voting rights per share, allowing Zuckerberg and other insiders to retain more control, said Stephen Diamond, a securities law expert at the Santa Clara University School of Law. The Goldman investment pegged Facebook at an eye-popping valuation of $50 billion, but trading of its private shares on secondary markets suggest a valuation above $70 billion, analysts say.

Many experts say Zuckerberg will ultimately be forced to sell Facebook stock to the public, if only to gain a currency -- Facebook public stock -- to buy the talent and technology from other companies that Facebook will need as it grows, and to compensate employees through stock they can easily sell.

But some Zuckerberg watchers aren't so sure.

"Mark is an extremely focused guy," said Lou Kerner, a veteran tech analyst with Wedbush Securities, who doesn't foresee a Facebook IPO in the near future. "He cares more about the product, the user experience and utility than he does about anything else."

Zuckerberg retains the urgency of the founder of a small startup, say people who know the Facebook CEO, focused on building products and his long-term vision for Facebook, rather than dealing with Wall Street and worrying about the company's daily stock price.

"Attention is a finite resource, and if Mark is off doing a road show (for investors), he's not going to be there working on a product," said Paul Buchheit, a valley veteran who recently left Facebook to work as a venture capitalist. "I think there is a great sense of urgency, so yeah, if the attention were shifted from the product off to something else that isn't as important, that would be a mistake."

And for Facebook shares to be listed on a public exchange such as the Nasdaq, Zuckerberg would have to consent to a board of directors half made up of company outsiders, Diamond said. Having to justify Facebook's daily price on a stock exchange would bring other limitations.

"You are defining yourself in public. It's like running for political office," Diamond said. "Clearly, Zuckerberg is a bright guy and they've gotten out of the gate really quickly, but it's not clear whether he's ready to lead a public company. I've yet to see him wear anything but a T-shirt. When he has to do his first congressional hearing, he can't wear a T-shirt."

Facebook has been courted over the years by suitors ranging from Microsoft to Viacom, but Zuckerberg's dalliance with Yahoo in 2006 appears to be the closest he ever got to being acquired. And the near-sale of the company shows how determined he is not to compromise his vision for Facebook.

At the time, Facebook was still a relatively small social network whose membership was limited to college students. According to people with direct knowledge of the offer who spoke on condition of anonymity, Yahoo's board authorized spending $1 billion -- Zuckerberg's firm price for Facebook -- in a deal code-named "Project Fraternity." But after the Yahoo board approved the bid in a conference call, then-CEO Terry Semel decided to go back to the young entrepreneur and knock the offer down to $850 million.

Zuckerberg walked.

"He went radio-silent," according to one person close to the deal, who said Zuckerberg stopped returning Yahoo's phone calls. "It was a giant middle finger" to Yahoo.

Stories like those suggest that Zuckerberg won't do what everyone wants, unless it is consistent with his vision for Facebook. And the rise in recent months of secondary markets like SharesPost and SecondMarket means that Facebook and other social media and networking companies like Zynga and Twitter have less pressure to go public because venture investors and early employees can cash out company stock on those secondary markets. Tech startups such as Microsoft and Google did not have that outlet in previous decades.

Since its launch in June 2009, San Bruno-based SharesPost has mushroomed to more than 50,000 registered buyers and sellers, fueled by the intense interest in Silicon Valley social networking companies like Facebook. In a recent auction of Facebook stock, for instance, far more buyers than it could accommodate tried to get in on the deal.

"Obviously, it demonstrates there is a tremendous amount of demand among the broad universe of investors who want to invest in Facebook," said David Weir, the CEO of SharesPost, a secondary market website where buyers and sellers can meet up and trade private company stock online. "What the secondary market does is provide an interim step for companies that have attractive growth prospects, so they can time their public listing in a much more disciplined and measured way."

Not everyone sees the secondary markets as benign, and the Securities and Exchange Commission has signaled that it will review the intense activity there. "I have to believe the SEC didn't expect it was going to come down the way it did," said Brian Erb, a partner with the San Francisco firm Ropes & Gray who specializes in securities law.

But if and when Facebook does have its IPO, it will be a significant milestone for Silicon Valley, and for the social networking and media industry in general.

"It'll be a signal this will be a real market," Li said. "It will be a sign that it's maturing into something that is part of everyday business, in the same way that Google's IPO was a sign that it was maturing as a company."

Contact Mike Swift at 408-271-3648. Follow him at Twitter.com/swiftstories.

Return to Top



Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all | View Clip
01/30/2011
SiliconValley.com

Just about everyone wants to see Facebook go public. Everyone, it seems, except CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Investors are hot for the company's initial public offering of stock and would rush to buy Facebook shares like teenage girls to a Justin Bieber concert. Facebook employees could reel in buckets of money. And the fragile economic psyche of Silicon Valley, which hasn't enjoyed a blockbuster IPO since Google's in 2004, would get a needed jolt of confidence.

But the young entrepreneur who founded Facebook in his Harvard dorm room seven years ago has repeatedly signaled his reluctance to have an IPO. He is said to prefer the privacy and control Facebook now enjoys, freed from the demands of Wall Street and quarterly financial reports and the daily performance of a publicly traded stock. With a private company he can maintain his singular focus on building the largest social organization in human history.

More than just his own penchant for control, Zuckerberg's aversion to an IPO also illustrates how the pros and cons of going public are changing, at least for Facebook and a few other hot social media companies. So much private investment is available to these companies that the primary benefit of going public -- raising capital -- is less crucial.

At the same time, the rise of exchanges that sell privately held stock has helped to quiet the demand from investors and company employees for an IPO. That leaves sharply focused founders like AdvertisementZuckerberg, Zynga's Mark Pincus and Twitter's Biz Stone freer to pursue their own vision.

"Look at it this way, if you have a vision the rest of the market can't see or understand or begin to comprehend, it's pretty hard to sell it" to the market, said Charlene Li, founder of the Altimeter Group, a technology research and consulting firm. "The nice thing about being private is you can hold onto that vision and not have to share it with anybody."

Yet Zuckerberg is fast approaching the point where for the first time he won't have the power to set all the rules. The Palo Alto company acknowledged last week that sometime this year it will exceed 500 shareholders, meaning the company under federal law must begin disclosing its financial results no later than April 2012. Even so, Zuckerberg could defy convention and defer selling stock to the public, delaying the distraction of an IPO for at least awhile, although few think he will hold off an IPO forever.

It wouldn't be the first time he has asserted his independence. When he was all of 22, he scuttled a $1 billion sale of Facebook to Yahoo when the bigger company tried to renege on his terms.

But there would be costs to delaying an IPO, like an inability to compensate employees through public stock, or to use public Facebook stock to buy other companies. The professional networking site LinkedIn elected to take the IPO plunge Thursday, when it notified regulators it plans to go public this year.

Facebook has taken steps that hint at how it might handle a public offering. For instance, Facebook disclosed that a recent $1.5 billion investment led by Goldman Sachs was in "Facebook Class A common stock," suggesting that like Google's founders in 2004, Facebook would create "Class B" stock that would have additional voting rights per share, allowing Zuckerberg and other insiders to retain more control, said Stephen Diamond, a securities law expert at the Santa Clara University School of Law. The Goldman investment pegged Facebook at an eye-popping valuation of $50 billion, but trading of its private shares on secondary markets suggest a valuation above $70 billion, analysts say.

Many experts say Zuckerberg will ultimately be forced to sell Facebook stock to the public, if only to gain a currency -- Facebook public stock -- to buy the talent and technology from other companies that Facebook will need as it grows, and to compensate employees through stock they can easily sell.

But some Zuckerberg watchers aren't so sure.

"Mark is an extremely focused guy," said Lou Kerner, a veteran tech analyst with Wedbush Securities, who doesn't foresee a Facebook IPO in the near future. "He cares more about the product, the user experience and utility than he does about anything else."

Zuckerberg retains the urgency of the founder of a small startup, say people who know the Facebook CEO, focused on building products and his long-term vision for Facebook, rather than dealing with Wall Street and worrying about the company's daily stock price.

"Attention is a finite resource, and if Mark is off doing a road show (for investors), he's not going to be there working on a product," said Paul Buchheit, a valley veteran who recently left Facebook to work as a venture capitalist. "I think there is a great sense of urgency, so yeah, if the attention were shifted from the product off to something else that isn't as important, that would be a mistake."

And for Facebook shares to be listed on a public exchange such as the Nasdaq, Zuckerberg would have to consent to a board of directors half made up of company outsiders, Diamond said. Having to justify Facebook's daily price on a stock exchange would bring other limitations.

"You are defining yourself in public. It's like running for political office," Diamond said. "Clearly, Zuckerberg is a bright guy and they've gotten out of the gate really quickly, but it's not clear whether he's ready to lead a public company. I've yet to see him wear anything but a T-shirt. When he has to do his first congressional hearing, he can't wear a T-shirt."

Facebook has been courted over the years by suitors ranging from Microsoft to Viacom, but Zuckerberg's dalliance with Yahoo in 2006 appears to be the closest he ever got to being acquired. And the near-sale of the company shows how determined he is not to compromise his vision for Facebook.

At the time, Facebook was still a relatively small social network whose membership was limited to college students. According to people with direct knowledge of the offer who spoke on condition of anonymity, Yahoo's board authorized spending $1 billion -- Zuckerberg's firm price for Facebook -- in a deal code-named "Project Fraternity." But after the Yahoo board approved the bid in a conference call, then-CEO Terry Semel decided to go back to the young entrepreneur and knock the offer down to $850 million.

Zuckerberg walked.

"He went radio-silent," according to one person close to the deal, who said Zuckerberg stopped returning Yahoo's phone calls. "It was a giant middle finger" to Yahoo.

Stories like those suggest that Zuckerberg won't do what everyone wants, unless it is consistent with his vision for Facebook. And the rise in recent months of secondary markets like SharesPost and SecondMarket means that Facebook and other social media and networking companies like Zynga and Twitter have less pressure to go public because venture investors and early employees can cash out company stock on those secondary markets. Tech startups such as Microsoft and Google did not have that outlet in previous decades.

Since its launch in June 2009, San Bruno-based SharesPost has mushroomed to more than 50,000 registered buyers and sellers, fueled by the intense interest in Silicon Valley social networking companies like Facebook. In a recent auction of Facebook stock, for instance, far more buyers than it could accommodate tried to get in on the deal.

"Obviously, it demonstrates there is a tremendous amount of demand among the broad universe of investors who want to invest in Facebook," said David Weir, the CEO of SharesPost, a secondary market website where buyers and sellers can meet up and trade private company stock online. "What the secondary market does is provide an interim step for companies that have attractive growth prospects, so they can time their public listing in a much more disciplined and measured way."

Not everyone sees the secondary markets as benign, and the Securities and Exchange Commission has signaled that it will review the intense activity there. "I have to believe the SEC didn't expect it was going to come down the way it did," said Brian Erb, a partner with the San Francisco firm Ropes & Gray who specializes in securities law.

But if and when Facebook does have its IPO, it will be a significant milestone for Silicon Valley, and for the social networking and media industry in general.

"It'll be a signal this will be a real market," Li said. "It will be a sign that it's maturing into something that is part of everyday business, in the same way that Google's IPO was a sign that it was maturing as a company."

Contact Mike Swift at 408-271-3648. Follow him at Twitter.com/swiftstories.

Return to Top



Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all | View Clip
01/30/2011
San Jose Mercury News - Online

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Photo by Justin Sullivan, Getty Images.

Just about everyone wants to see Facebook go public. Everyone, it seems, except CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Investors are hot for the company's initial public offering of stock and would rush to buy Facebook shares like teenage girls to a Justin Bieber concert. Facebook employees could reel in buckets of money. And the fragile economic psyche of Silicon Valley, which hasn't enjoyed a blockbuster IPO since Google's in 2004, would get a needed jolt of confidence.

But the young entrepreneur who founded Facebook in his Harvard dorm room seven years ago has repeatedly signaled his reluctance to have an IPO. He is said to prefer the privacy and control Facebook now enjoys, freed from the demands of Wall Street and quarterly financial reports and the daily performance of a publicly traded stock. With a private company he can maintain his singular focus on building the largest social organization in human history.

More than just his own penchant for control, Zuckerberg's aversion to an IPO also illustrates how the pros and cons of going public are changing, at least for Facebook and a few other hot social media companies. So much private investment is available to these companies that the primary benefit of going public -- raising capital -- is less crucial.

At the same time, the rise of exchanges that sell privately held stock has helped to quiet the demand from investors and company employees for an IPO. That leaves sharply focused founders like

Zuckerberg, Zynga's Mark Pincus and Twitter's Biz Stone freer to pursue their own vision.

"Look at it this way, if you have a vision the rest of the market can't see or understand or begin to comprehend, it's pretty hard to sell it" to the market, said Charlene Li, founder of the Altimeter Group, a technology research and consulting firm. "The nice thing about being private is you can hold onto that vision and not have to share it with anybody."

Yet Zuckerberg is fast approaching the point where for the first time he won't have the power to set all the rules. The Palo Alto company acknowledged last week that sometime this year it will exceed 500 shareholders, meaning the company under federal law must begin disclosing its financial results no later than April 2012. Even so, Zuckerberg could defy convention and defer selling stock to the public, delaying the distraction of an IPO for at least awhile, although few think he will hold off an IPO forever.

It wouldn't be the first time he has asserted his independence. When he was all of 22, he scuttled a $1 billion sale of Facebook to Yahoo when the bigger company tried to renege on his terms.

But there would be costs to delaying an IPO, like an inability to compensate employees through public stock, or to use public Facebook stock to buy other companies. The professional networking site LinkedIn elected to take the IPO plunge Thursday, when it notified regulators it plans to go public this year.

Facebook has taken steps that hint at how it might handle a public offering. For instance, Facebook disclosed that a recent $1.5 billion investment led by Goldman Sachs was in "Facebook Class A common stock," suggesting that like Google's founders in 2004, Facebook would create "Class B" stock that would have additional voting rights per share, allowing Zuckerberg and other insiders to retain more control, said Stephen Diamond, a securities law expert at the Santa Clara University School of Law. The Goldman investment pegged Facebook at an eye-popping valuation of $50 billion, but trading of its private shares on secondary markets suggest a valuation above $70 billion, analysts say.

Many experts say Zuckerberg will ultimately be forced to sell Facebook stock to the public, if only to gain a currency -- Facebook public stock -- to buy the talent and technology from other companies that Facebook will need as it grows, and to compensate employees through stock they can easily sell.

But some Zuckerberg watchers aren't so sure.

"Mark is an extremely focused guy," said Lou Kerner, a veteran tech analyst with Wedbush Securities, who doesn't foresee a Facebook IPO in the near future. "He cares more about the product, the user experience and utility than he does about anything else."

Zuckerberg retains the urgency of the founder of a small startup, say people who know the Facebook CEO, focused on building products and his long-term vision for Facebook, rather than dealing with Wall Street and worrying about the company's daily stock price.

"Attention is a finite resource, and if Mark is off doing a road show (for investors), he's not going to be there working on a product," said Paul Buchheit, a valley veteran who recently left Facebook to work as a venture capitalist. "I think there is a great sense of urgency, so yeah, if the attention were shifted from the product off to something else that isn't as important, that would be a mistake."

And for Facebook shares to be listed on a public exchange such as the Nasdaq, Zuckerberg would have to consent to a board of directors half made up of company outsiders, Diamond said. Having to justify Facebook's daily price on a stock exchange would bring other limitations.

"You are defining yourself in public. It's like running for political office," Diamond said. "Clearly, Zuckerberg is a bright guy and they've gotten out of the gate really quickly, but it's not clear whether he's ready to lead a public company. I've yet to see him wear anything but a T-shirt. When he has to do his first congressional hearing, he can't wear a T-shirt."

Facebook has been courted over the years by suitors ranging from Microsoft to Viacom, but Zuckerberg's dalliance with Yahoo in 2006 appears to be the closest he ever got to being acquired. And the near-sale of the company shows how determined he is not to compromise his vision for Facebook.

At the time, Facebook was still a relatively small social network whose membership was limited to college students. According to people with direct knowledge of the offer who spoke on condition of anonymity, Yahoo's board authorized spending $1 billion -- Zuckerberg's firm price for Facebook -- in a deal code-named "Project Fraternity." But after the Yahoo board approved the bid in a conference call, then-CEO Terry Semel decided to go back to the young entrepreneur and knock the offer down to $850 million.

Zuckerberg walked.

"He went radio-silent," according to one person close to the deal, who said Zuckerberg stopped returning Yahoo's phone calls. "It was a giant middle finger" to Yahoo.

Stories like those suggest that Zuckerberg won't do what everyone wants, unless it is consistent with his vision for Facebook. And the rise in recent months of secondary markets like SharesPost and SecondMarket means that Facebook and other social media and networking companies like Zynga and Twitter have less pressure to go public because venture investors and early employees can cash out company stock on those secondary markets. Tech startups such as Microsoft and Google did not have that outlet in previous decades.

Since its launch in June 2009, San Bruno-based SharesPost has mushroomed to more than 50,000 registered buyers and sellers, fueled by the intense interest in Silicon Valley social networking companies like Facebook. In a recent auction of Facebook stock, for instance, far more buyers than it could accommodate tried to get in on the deal.

"Obviously, it demonstrates there is a tremendous amount of demand among the broad universe of investors who want to invest in Facebook," said David Weir, the CEO of SharesPost, a secondary market website where buyers and sellers can meet up and trade private company stock online. "What the secondary market does is provide an interim step for companies that have attractive growth prospects, so they can time their public listing in a much more disciplined and measured way."

Not everyone sees the secondary markets as benign, and the Securities and Exchange Commission has signaled that it will review the intense activity there. "I have to believe the SEC didn't expect it was going to come down the way it did," said Brian Erb, a partner with the San Francisco firm Ropes & Gray who specializes in securities law.

But if and when Facebook does have its IPO, it will be a significant milestone for Silicon Valley, and for the social networking and media industry in general.

"It'll be a signal this will be a real market," Li said. "It will be a sign that it's maturing into something that is part of everyday business, in the same way that Google's IPO was a sign that it was maturing as a company."

Contact Mike Swift at 408-271-3648. Follow him at Twitter.com/swiftstories.

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PUC appointees give power to the people
01/30/2011
Monterey County Herald

So far so good.

Gov. Jerry Brown made two consumer-friendly appointments to the important state Public Utilities Commission last week and he still has one or two more chances to make sure the commission understands that it's supposed to regulate utilities, not promote them.

It is one of the commission's responsibilities to make sure that the state's public power, transportation, telecommunications and water utilities don't go belly up, but it exists primarily because most utility companies are monopolies. Without the direct oversight of a public advocate, those utilities would be free to charge rates well beyond the generous portions they are already receiving.

In recent years, however, the PUC seemed to feel that its top priority was to protect the shareholders of Pacific Gas & Electric Co. and the others, including Peninsula water purveyor California American Water, rather than to protect the customers.

That's why consumer advocates are pressing the governor to end the term of PUC Chairman Michael Peevey, a Schwarzenegger appointee who has frequently led a board majority into overturning consumer-friendly rulings by the commission's own administrative law judges and ignoring the input from the PUC's Division of Ratepayer Advocates. With Peevey's departure, Brown would have two more openings to fill. Last week, he proposed filling two other vacancies with Mike Florio, a senior attorney for the utility watchdog group TURN, and telecommunications specialist Catherine Sandoval, who teaches law at Santa Clara University.

What happens at the PUC is important to all of California but particularly so to the Monterey Peninsula. Because of the region's failure to take command of its water shortage decades ago, the state regulator finds itself in charge of the process of finding a water supply to replace much of what Cal Am's Peninsula customers are now taking from the dwindling Carmel River.

The PUC is wisely leading the way for construction of a desalination plant in Marina but, under Peevey's leadership, it has done little to ensure that Cal Am customers will have any say over the plant and its operations, and there is little indication that the PUC truly understands just how expensive the current plans are.

With his remaining appointment or appointments, it is important that Brown keep his focus on people of average means who struggle each month to pay their various utility bills and that he worry less about the utility companies. They have their lawyers and their lobbyists. They'll get by. They don't need the PUC to be on their side, but the people sure do.

----

All contents ©2011 MONTEREY COUNTY HERALD and may not be republished without written permission.

Copyright © 2011 The Monterey County Herald

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IPO AHOY?
01/30/2011
San Jose Mercury News

Just about everyone wants to see Facebook go public. Everyone, it seems, except CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Investors are hot for the company's initial public offering of stock and would rush to buy Facebook shares like teenage girls to a Justin Bieber concert. Facebook employees could reel in buckets of money. And the fragile economic psyche of Silicon Valley, which hasn't enjoyed a blockbuster IPO since Google's in 2004, would get a needed jolt of confidence.

But the young entrepreneur who founded Facebook in his Harvard dorm room seven years ago has repeatedly signaled his reluctance to have an IPO. He is said to prefer the privacy and control Facebook now enjoys, freed from the demands of Wall Street and quarterly financial reports and the daily performance of a publicly traded stock. With a private company he can maintain his singular focus on building the largest social organization in human history.

More than just his own penchant for control, Zuckerberg's aversion to an IPO also illustrates how the pros and cons of going public are changing, at least for Facebook and a few other hot social media companies. So much private investment is available to these companies that the primary benefit of going public -- raising capital -- is less crucial.

At the same time, the rise of exchanges that sell privately held stock has helped to quiet the demand from investors and company employees for an IPO. That leaves sharply focused founders like Zuckerberg, Zynga's Mark Pincus and Twitter's Biz Stone freer to pursue their own vision.

"Look at it this way, if you have a vision the rest of the market can't see or understand or begin to comprehend, it's pretty hard to sell it" to the market, said Charlene Li, founder of the Altimeter Group, a technology research and consulting firm. "The nice thing about being private is you can hold onto that vision and not have to share it with anybody."

Yet Zuckerberg is fast approaching the point where for the first time he won't have the power to set all the rules. The Palo Alto company acknowledged last week that sometime this year it will exceed 500 shareholders, meaning the company under federal law must begin disclosing its financial results no later than April 2012. Even so, Zuckerberg could defy convention and defer selling stock to the public, delaying the distraction of an IPO for at least awhile, although few think he will hold off an IPO forever.

It wouldn't be the first time he has asserted his independence. When he was all of 22, he scuttled a $1 billion sale of Facebook to Yahoo when the bigger company tried to renege on his terms.

But there would be costs to delaying an IPO, like an inability to compensate employees through public stock, or to use public Facebook stock to buy other companies. The professional networking site LinkedIn elected to take the IPO plunge Thursday, when it notified regulators it plans to go public this year.

Facebook has taken steps that hint at how it might handle a public offering. For instance, Facebook disclosed that a recent $1.5 billion investment led by Goldman Sachs was in "Facebook Class A common stock," suggesting that like Google's founders in 2004, Facebook would create "Class B" stock that would have additional voting rights per share, allowing Zuckerberg and other insiders to retain more control, said Stephen Diamond, a securities law expert at the Santa Clara University School of Law. The Goldman investment pegged Facebook at an eye-popping valuation of $50 billion, but trading of its private shares on secondary markets suggest a valuation above $70 billion, analysts say.

Many experts say Zuckerberg will ultimately be forced to sell Facebook stock to the public, if only to gain a currency -- Facebook public stock -- to buy the talent and technology from other companies that Facebook will need as it grows, and to compensate employees through stock they can easily sell.

But some Zuckerberg watchers aren't so sure.

"Mark is an extremely focused guy," said Lou Kerner, a veteran tech analyst with Wedbush Securities, who doesn't foresee a Facebook IPO in the near future. "He cares more about the product, the user experience and utility than he does about anything else."

Zuckerberg retains the urgency of the founder of a small startup, say people who know the Facebook CEO, focused on building products and his long-term vision for Facebook, rather than dealing with Wall Street and worrying about the company's daily stock price.

"Attention is a finite resource, and if Mark is off doing a road show (for investors), he's not going to be there working on a product," said Paul Buchheit, a valley veteran who recently left Facebook to work as a venture capitalist. "I think there is a great sense of urgency, so yeah, if the attention were shifted from the product off to something else that isn't as important, that would be a mistake."

And for Facebook shares to be listed on a public exchange such as the Nasdaq, Zuckerberg would have to consent to a board of directors half made up of company outsiders, Diamond said. Having to justify Facebook's daily price on a stock exchange would bring other limitations.

"You are defining yourself in public. It's like running for political office," Diamond said. "Clearly, Zuckerberg is a bright guy and they've gotten out of the gate really quickly, but it's not clear whether he's ready to lead a public company. I've yet to see him wear anything but a T-shirt. When he has to do his first congressional hearing, he can't wear a T-shirt."

Facebook has been courted over the years by suitors ranging from Microsoft to Viacom, but Zuckerberg's dalliance with Yahoo in 2006 appears to be the closest he ever got to being acquired. And the near-sale of the company shows how determined he is not to compromise his vision for Facebook.

At the time, Facebook was still a relatively small social network whose membership was limited to college students. According to people with direct knowledge of the offer who spoke on condition of anonymity, Yahoo's board authorized spending $1 billion -- Zuckerberg's firm price for Facebook -- in a deal code-named "Project Fraternity." But after the Yahoo board approved the bid in a conference call, then-CEO Terry Semel decided to go back to the young entrepreneur and knock the offer down to $850 million.

Zuckerberg walked.

"He went radio-silent," according to one person close to the deal, who said Zuckerberg stopped returning Yahoo's phone calls. "It was a giant middle finger" to Yahoo.

Stories like those suggest that Zuckerberg won't do what everyone wants, unless it is consistent with his vision for Facebook. And the rise in recent months of secondary markets like SharesPost and SecondMarket means that Facebook and other social media and networking companies like Zynga and Twitter have less pressure to go public because venture investors and early employees can cash out company stock on those secondary markets. Tech startups such as Microsoft and Google did not have that outlet in previous decades.

Since its launch in June 2009, San Bruno-based SharesPost has mushroomed to more than 50,000 registered buyers and sellers, fueled by the intense interest in Silicon Valley social networking companies like Facebook. In a recent auction of Facebook stock, for instance, far more buyers than it could accommodate tried to get in on the deal.

"Obviously, it demonstrates there is a tremendous amount of demand among the broad universe of investors who want to invest in Facebook," said David Weir, the CEO of SharesPost, a secondary market website where buyers and sellers can meet up and trade private company stock online. "What the secondary market does is provide an interim step for companies that have attractive growth prospects, so they can time their public listing in a much more disciplined and measured way."

Not everyone sees the secondary markets as benign, and the Securities and Exchange Commission has signaled that it will review the intense activity there. "I have to believe the SEC didn't expect it was going to come down the way it did," said Brian Erb, a partner with the San Francisco firm Ropes & Gray who specializes in securities law.

But if and when Facebook does have its IPO, it will be a significant milestone for Silicon Valley, and for the social networking and media industry in general.

"It'll be a signal this will be a real market," Li said. "It will be a sign that it's maturing into something that is part of everyday business, in the same way that Google's IPO was a sign that it was maturing as a company."

Contact Mike Swift at 408-271-3648. Follow him at Twitter.com/swiftstories.

Copyright © 2011 San Jose Mercury News

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Facebook IPO sought by nearly everyone -- but not all | View Clip
01/30/2011
Santa Cruz Sentinel - Online

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Photo by Justin Sullivan, Getty Images.

Just about everyone wants to see Facebook go public. Everyone, it seems, except CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Investors are hot for the company's initial public offering of stock and would rush to buy Facebook shares like teenage girls to a Justin Bieber concert. Facebook employees could reel in buckets of money. And the fragile economic psyche of Silicon Valley, which hasn't enjoyed a blockbuster IPO since Google's in 2004, would get a needed jolt of confidence.

But the young entrepreneur who founded Facebook in his Harvard dorm room seven years ago has repeatedly signaled his reluctance to have an IPO. He is said to prefer the privacy and control Facebook now enjoys, freed from the demands of Wall Street and quarterly financial reports and the daily performance of a publicly traded stock. With a private company he can maintain his singular focus on building the largest social organization in human history.

More than just his own penchant for control, Zuckerberg's aversion to an IPO also illustrates how the pros and cons of going public are changing, at least for Facebook and a few other hot social media companies. So much private investment is available to these companies that the primary benefit of going public -- raising capital -- is less crucial.

At the same time, the rise of exchanges that sell privately held stock has helped to quiet the demand from investors and company employees for an IPO. That leaves sharply focused founders like

Zuckerberg, Zynga's Mark Pincus and Twitter's Biz Stone freer to pursue their own vision.

"Look at it this way, if you have a vision the rest of the market can't see or understand or begin to comprehend, it's pretty hard to sell it" to the market, said Charlene Li, founder of the Altimeter Group, a technology research and consulting firm. "The nice thing about being private is you can hold onto that vision and not have to share it with anybody."

Yet Zuckerberg is fast approaching the point where for the first time he won't have the power to set all the rules. The Palo Alto company acknowledged last week that sometime this year it will exceed 500 shareholders, meaning the company under federal law must begin disclosing its financial results no later than April 2012. Even so, Zuckerberg could defy convention and defer selling stock to the public, delaying the distraction of an IPO for at least awhile, although few think he will hold off an IPO forever.

It wouldn't be the first time he has asserted his independence. When he was all of 22, he scuttled a $1 billion sale of Facebook to Yahoo when the bigger company tried to renege on his terms.

But there would be costs to delaying an IPO, like an inability to compensate employees through public stock, or to use public Facebook stock to buy other companies. The professional networking site LinkedIn elected to take the IPO plunge Thursday, when it notified regulators it plans to go public this year.

Facebook has taken steps that hint at how it might handle a public offering. For instance, Facebook disclosed that a recent $1.5 billion investment led by Goldman Sachs was in "Facebook Class A common stock," suggesting that like Google's founders in 2004, Facebook would create "Class B" stock that would have additional voting rights per share, allowing Zuckerberg and other insiders to retain more control, said Stephen Diamond, a securities law expert at the Santa Clara University School of Law. The Goldman investment pegged Facebook at an eye-popping valuation of $50 billion, but trading of its private shares on secondary markets suggest a valuation above $70 billion, analysts say.

Many experts say Zuckerberg will ultimately be forced to sell Facebook stock to the public, if only to gain a currency -- Facebook public stock -- to buy the talent and technology from other companies that Facebook will need as it grows, and to compensate employees through stock they can easily sell.

But some Zuckerberg watchers aren't so sure.

"Mark is an extremely focused guy," said Lou Kerner, a veteran tech analyst with Wedbush Securities, who doesn't foresee a Facebook IPO in the near future. "He cares more about the product, the user experience and utility than he does about anything else."

Zuckerberg retains the urgency of the founder of a small startup, say people who know the Facebook CEO, focused on building products and his long-term vision for Facebook, rather than dealing with Wall Street and worrying about the company's daily stock price.

"Attention is a finite resource, and if Mark is off doing a road show (for investors), he's not going to be there working on a product," said Paul Buchheit, a valley veteran who recently left Facebook to work as a venture capitalist. "I think there is a great sense of urgency, so yeah, if the attention were shifted from the product off to something else that isn't as important, that would be a mistake."

And for Facebook shares to be listed on a public exchange such as the Nasdaq, Zuckerberg would have to consent to a board of directors half made up of company outsiders, Diamond said. Having to justify Facebook's daily price on a stock exchange would bring other limitations.

"You are defining yourself in public. It's like running for political office," Diamond said. "Clearly, Zuckerberg is a bright guy and they've gotten out of the gate really quickly, but it's not clear whether he's ready to lead a public company. I've yet to see him wear anything but a T-shirt. When he has to do his first congressional hearing, he can't wear a T-shirt."

Facebook has been courted over the years by suitors ranging from Microsoft to Viacom, but Zuckerberg's dalliance with Yahoo in 2006 appears to be the closest he ever got to being acquired. And the near-sale of the company shows how determined he is not to compromise his vision for Facebook.

At the time, Facebook was still a relatively small social network whose membership was limited to college students. According to people with direct knowledge of the offer who spoke on condition of anonymity, Yahoo's board authorized spending $1 billion -- Zuckerberg's firm price for Facebook -- in a deal code-named "Project Fraternity." But after the Yahoo board approved the bid in a conference call, then-CEO Terry Semel decided to go back to the young entrepreneur and knock the offer down to $850 million.

Zuckerberg walked.

"He went radio-silent," according to one person close to the deal, who said Zuckerberg stopped returning Yahoo's phone calls. "It was a giant middle finger" to Yahoo.

Stories like those suggest that Zuckerberg won't do what everyone wants, unless it is consistent with his vision for Facebook. And the rise in recent months of secondary markets like SharesPost and SecondMarket means that Facebook and other social media and networking companies like Zynga and Twitter have less pressure to go public because venture investors and early employees can cash out company stock on those secondary markets. Tech startups such as Microsoft and Google did not have that outlet in previous decades.

Since its launch in June 2009, San Bruno-based SharesPost has mushroomed to more than 50,000 registered buyers and sellers, fueled by the intense interest in Silicon Valley social networking companies like Facebook. In a recent auction of Facebook stock, for instance, far more buyers than it could accommodate tried to get in on the deal.

"Obviously, it demonstrates there is a tremendous amount of demand among the broad universe of investors who want to invest in Facebook," said David Weir, the CEO of SharesPost, a secondary market website where buyers and sellers can meet up and trade private company stock online. "What the secondary market does is provide an interim step for companies that have attractive growth prospects, so they can time their public listing in a much more disciplined and measured way."

Not everyone sees the secondary markets as benign, and the Securities and Exchange Commission has signaled that it will review the intense activity there. "I have to believe the SEC didn't expect it was going to come down the way it did," said Brian Erb, a partner with the San Francisco firm Ropes & Gray who specializes in securities law.

But if and when Facebook does have its IPO, it will be a significant milestone for Silicon Valley, and for the social networking and media industry in general.

"It'll be a signal this will be a real market," Li said. "It will be a sign that it's maturing into something that is part of everyday business, in the same way that Google's IPO was a sign that it was maturing as a company."

Contact Mike Swift at 408-271-3648. Follow him at Twitter.com/swiftstories.

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1999 assault case becomes 2011 murder investigation | View Clip
01/30/2011
Korea Times

The recent death of an 82-year-old man has been caused by a bashing which occurred 12 years ago, a San Francisco coroner said. Police have reopened the 1999 assault case as a homicide, reported the San Jose Mercury News, Jan. 27, a daily newspaper in California's Silicon Valley. The attacker was convicted in 1999 of attempted murder and is still serving his jail sentence.

According to reports, the court made the unusual ruling on Jan. 26 that Lowell Noble's direct cause of death earlier this month was in fact an assault that he sustained 12 years ago.

The Santa Clara County Medical Examiner took into account that Noble was elderly and suffering from heart problems and diabetes when he died, but ruled that the most significant cause of his death was the traumatic brain injury he suffered on May 15, 1999, when he was assaulted in his own house in San Jose.

Specifically, Noble's death certificate points to Noble's aspiration pneumonia caused by his dysphagia ― a swallowing problem ― which in turn was directly caused by his brain injury.

While investigations into the assault case have been re-opened, prosecutors are still deciding whether they will actually charge Walter Jones, 49, with murder or manslaughter. Jones is serving a 16-year sentence for savagely beating Noble and Jones's mother, Linda, whom Noble was dating at the time.

Dr. Michelle Jorden, the medical examiner who signed Noble's death certificate, declined to speak about the case, saying it is against the department policy to comment on open homicide investigations.

But Santa Clara County Sheriff Capt. Kevin Jensen, who oversees the coroner's office, said: "In general, the concept of delayed fatals is this: If the event caused an injury, and that injury was the largest contributing factor in the death, then it can be ruled a homicide."

Family members say that although Noble survived the 1999 attack, he never fully recovered.

He suffered short-term memory loss and was never again able to live independently after the attack. Noble studied chemistry and among his inventions were 3-D viewing glasses and electron tube sockets, according to his family. He ran his own company, QD Technology, until he was injured in the attack, his family said.

Deputy District Attorney Brian Welch said he needs to review the entire case again before deciding whether to re-charge Jones.

According to Californian law, it is assumed that an assault cannot cause a death after three years, however arguments to the contrary may be presented in court.

Santa Clara University Law Professor Gerald Uelmen, a member of the O.J. Simpson defense team, said if Jones is charged with murder, "the case would likely come down to be a battle of the experts.”

Such cases are called "delayed fatals," and are not uncommon; however, delayed fatal cases that take years are rare. In one highly unusual case in 2009, a coroner in the state of Virginia ruled that a Navy veteran died as the result of a 1976 shooting that left him a quadriplegic.

Prosecutors couldn't file charges in that case because Virginia law prevents murder prosecutions if the victim dies more than one year and one day after the fatal wound was inflicted. 美서 "12년� � 폭행이 사망원인"…살인죄 재수사 최근 사망한 82세 노인의 직� �� �인 사망원인이 12년� � 발생한 폭행이라는 검시관의 검시 결과에 따라 경찰이 현재 살인미수죄로 복역중인 피의자를 대상으로 살인 혐의에 대한 재수사에 착수했다� 실리콘밸리 일간 새너� �이 머큐리뉴스가 27일 보도했다. 보도에 따르면 사법당국은 지난 7일 사망한 로웰 노블의 사망원인이 12년 � � 발생한 폭행 때문이라는 이례� �인 검시결과가 26일 나왔다� 밝혔다. 샌타클래라 카운티의 검시관은 그가 � � �이� 심장질환과 당뇨병을 앓� 있었지만 가장 직� �� �인 사망원인은 1999년 3월15일 새너� �이에 있는 자� 의 집에서 발생한 뇌부분의 외상 때문이라� 결� 지었다. 사망진단서에 뇌상으로 인해 음식을 넘기지 못하는 연하곤란증(dysphagia)에 따른 흡인성 폐� �이 사인으로 � �시됐다는 것. 검찰은 이에 따라 조만간 당시 폭행 피의자 월터 존스(49)를 살인 혐의로 다시 기소� 것인지 여부를 결� �� 예� �이다. 존스는 데이트 중인 노블과 자� 의 어머니인 린다를 무차별 폭행, 살인미수 혐의로 16년 형을 � � 받� 현재 복역중이다. 노블의 사망진단서에 서명을 한 미셸 조� 박사는 규� �상 수사중인 살인사건에 대한 언급을 하지 못하게 돼 있다면서 관� � 사건에 대한 코멘트를 거부했다. 노블의 가족들은 장례식에서 노블이 폭행 당시 살아남기는 했지만 단기� �으로 기억상실증세를 보이는 등 � �상� �인 삶을 살지 못했다� � �했다. 노블은 `3-D` 특수안경 관� � 특허 등 모두 17개의 특허를 보� 하� `QD테크놀러지`라는 자� 의 사업체를 경영했으나 그 사건 이후 결국 사업체를 포기했다는 것.

샌타클래라 부지방검사 브라이언 웰치는 그러나 존스의 살인죄를 인� �받기가 쉽지는 않을 것이라� 말했다. 캘리포니아 주법에는 피해자가 공격 후 3년이 경과한 뒤 사망하면 공격과 사망간 인과관계를 인� �하지 않� 있지만 법� �에서 인과관계 여부를 다툴 수 있도록 규� �하� 있다. OJ 심슨사건 변호를 담당했던 샌타클래라대 법학과 � �럴드 우엘멘 교수는 존스가 살인죄로 기소되면 � �문가들간에 엄청난 공방이 벌어질 공산이 크다� 예상했다. 이런 사건은 극히 이례� �이지만 2009년 버지니아주에서 � 사한 사례가 있었다� 이 � 문은 � �했다. 당시 검시관이 퇴역해군의 사망이 1976년 발생한 총격사건 때문인 것으로 결� 을 내� �으나 치명� �인 공격이 발생한 후 1년이 지나서 사망� 경우 살인죄로 기소� 수 없다는 주법으로 인해 검찰이 기소를 포기한 바 있다� 이 � 문은 덧붙였다.

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Asian Americans scarce on California courts | View Clip
01/30/2011
Africa Leader

Sunday 30th January, 2011

(Source: San Francisco Chronicle)

Mayors Jean Quan and Ed Lee are examples of the impressive strides that Asian Americans have been making in California politics, at both the executive and legislative levels.

However, in the third branch of government, the judiciary, we still have a long way to go.

When I was at the Santa Clara University School of Law in the 1970s, I had few Asian American classmates, which was typical of most law schools.

Since then, I have seen an explosive growth in the number of Asian Americans graduating from law school and reaching major law firms - but Asian Americans remain underrepresented in the judiciary.

When Gov. Gray Davis appointed me to the bench in 2002, there were only 15 Asian American state court judges in the Bay Area.

Today, there are 36, in a judiciary of 380. We have the first A... ...

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Asian Americans scarce on California courts | View Clip
01/30/2011
San Francisco Chronicle - Online

Mayors Jean Quan and Ed Lee are examples of the impressive strides that Asian Americans have been making in California politics, at both the executive and legislative levels.

However, in the third branch of government, the judiciary, we still have a long way to go.

When I was at the Santa Clara University School of Law in the 1970s, I had few Asian American classmates, which was typical of most law schools. Since then, I have seen an explosive growth in the number of Asian Americans graduating from law school and reaching major law firms - but Asian Americans remain underrepresented in the judiciary.

When Gov. Gray Davis appointed me to the bench in 2002, there were only 15 Asian American state court judges in the Bay Area. Today, there are 36, in a judiciary of 380. We have the first Asian American chief justice on our state Supreme Court, and, after 160 years of waiting, we finally have an Asian American judge on the federal court in San Francisco.

While the increase in our numbers is heartening, these numbers are still not close to being representative of the region's Asian American population. For example, there has not been an Asian American on the state First District Court of Appeal in San Francisco for the past 15 years. The pool of qualified applicants has gotten so large that there is no excuse for this enduring dearth of diversity in the judiciary.

This article appeared on page F - 4 of the San Francisco Chronicle

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Brown names consumer advocate to utilities commission | View Clip
01/29/2011
Hartford Courant - Online

Reporting from Sacramento —

Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday named a leading consumer advocate to serve on the California Public Utilities Commission, one of the state's most powerful regulatory bodies.

Michael Florio, a senior attorney for the Utility Reform Network, known as TURN, was appointed to serve a five-year term. Brown also named Catherine Sandoval, a Santa Clara University law professor, telecommunications expert and former Rhodes scholar, to the five-member, constitutionally independent panel.

[Sample Our Free Connecticut Business Midday Newsletter]

The utilities commission oversees companies supplying electricity, natural gas, telephone and cable television service to millions of homes and businesses.

The governor reappointed Robert Weisenmiller, an energy consultant, to the California Energy Commission and designated him to serve as chairman, beginning Feb. 6. Weisenmiller has four years left on his five-year term. A second, five-year slot went to Carla Peterman, a UC Berkeley doctoral candidate, solar-energy specialist and another Rhodes scholar.

The energy commission is charged with licensing power plants, setting efficiency standards for appliances and buildings, and conducting research and analysis on a range of energy-related issues.

The four appointees, who must be confirmed by the state Senate, won praise from one of the Legislature's top energy officials, Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima), chairman of the Senate Energy, Utilities and Communications Committee.

"Gov. Brown's appointments reflect his desire to move California forward in the areas of clean energy and telecommunications while controlling costs to ratepayers," Padilla said. "Given the challenging economy, that makes a lot of sense."

Florio brings 32 years of legal experience in utilities law to the PUC. The Oakland resident has direct knowledge of most energy proceedings at the San Francisco-based agency. His legal arguments at times had major effects on key decisions made by commissioners during the California energy crisis of 2000 and 2001. Florio is an expert on natural gas regulatory law. He has stepped down from TURN to serve on the utilities commission.

"Consumers in California now have a CPUC commissioner they can depend on," said TURN Executive Director Mark Toney. "Mike Florio is eminently qualified to serve on an agency whose mission is to 'protect the public interest by protecting consumers.' His expertise and dedication are likely to help the commission rehabilitate its tarred image."

The PUC recently has been criticized for an alleged lack of oversight of a natural gas pipeline that exploded in September, killing eight people in San Bruno.

marc.lifsher@latimes.com

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Redistricting commission picks Angelo Ancheta for vacant slot | View Clip
01/29/2011
Fresno Bee - Online

Posted at 12:15 AM on Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011

EDITORIAL: Vote 'yes' on Prop. 20, vote 'no' on Prop. 27

Is panel to redraw districts erring?

Redistrict panel may require some help

Change is coming to California

Calif. fails to gain House seat under census

California's new redistricting commission was made whole Friday when Angelo Ancheta was chosen from six other Democratic candidates to replace a member who resigned earlier this month.

Ancheta, a San Francisco resident, is a professor at Santa Clara University School of Law. He has taught classes and conducted research in constitutional rights, voting rights and election law.

Ancheta will fill a seat left vacant by Democrat Elaine Kuo of Mountain View, who resigned Jan. 14.

The Citizens Redistricting Commission is responsible for drawing legislative, congressional and Board of Equalization districts by Aug. 15.

The panel must consist of five Democrats, five Republicans, and four independent or minor-party voters.

With Ancheta's selection, the panel now consists of four Asian Americans, three Caucasians, three Hispanic or Latino members, two African Americans, one Pacific Islander, and one from the category of American Indian or Alaska native.

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Redistricting commission picks Angelo Ancheta for vacant slot | View Clip
01/29/2011
Sacramento Bee - Online, The

California's new redistricting commission was made whole Friday when Angelo Ancheta was chosen from six other Democratic candidates to replace a member who resigned earlier this month.

Ancheta, a San Francisco resident, is a professor at Santa Clara University School of Law. He has taught classes and conducted research in constitutional rights, voting rights and election law.

Ancheta will fill a seat left vacant by Democrat Elaine Kuo of Mountain View, who resigned Jan. 14.

The Citizens Redistricting Commission is responsible for drawing legislative, congressional and Board of Equalization districts by Aug. 15.

The panel must consist of five Democrats, five Republicans, and four independent or minor-party voters.

With Ancheta's selection, the panel now consists of four Asian Americans, three Caucasians, three Hispanic or Latino members, two African Americans, one Pacific Islander, and one from the category of American Indian or Alaska native.

– Jim Sanders, Bee Capitol Bureau

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TIRELESS HUMANITARIAN
01/29/2011
San Jose Mercury News

At 8 in the morning, the air in the pantry was as cool as a package of bologna from the refrigerator. Louise D'Ambruoso wasn't fazed. The petite, silver-and-brown-haired, Italian sparkplug with a thick, New England accent slipped on a pair of nylon gloves and grabbed a loaf of bread and a box of sliced, American cheese.

"How many SANG-wiches we got to go?" she asked.

Larry Murchan figured several more boxes. The retired engineer had picked up D'Ambruoso earlier that morning at her apartment, as he does about three times a week, and taken her to Sacred Heart Community Service just south of downtown San Jose. They would pack 240 meat and cheese sandwiches, plus 10 of peanut butter and jelly. Other volunteers would deliver them to homeless men, battered women in shelters, day laborers and the working poor.

At age 91, D'Ambruoso sticks to the sandwich assembly line, except for the one day a week she works hanging up donated clothing. Thousands of needy people come to Sacred Heart for food or some sort of social service, but few ever see one of its oldest, hardest-working volunteers.

"I don't like working the front office," D'Ambruoso, of San Jose, said while cutting open a package of peppered turkey with a four-inch knife and pointing it at no one in particular. "Too many people. Too demanding."

Whether she wanted it that way, the back shop became her station in life a long time ago. But now, so what? Life was different then.

"I usually avoid things like this," D'Ambruoso grumbled.

Things like what?

"Interviews!"

She grabbed her cane from under the table and headed for the volunteers' break room. For three hours, she had nimbly packed sandwich bags with a straight back and without a single slip, and now it was time to stop talking and eat. Some of the other volunteers had baked casseroles for a cook-off.

When D'Ambruoso was 16, her immigrant father took her out of high school to work in a clothing sweatshop in New Haven, Conn., and help support her six younger brothers and sisters.

"I loved school," she recalled. "I told him he was ruining my life."

But she relented and took the job pressing shirts, which paid $5 a week.

"Immigrants and old people said, 'Go to work, bring home money,'" she said. "I was the oldest. That's what we were supposed to do. It never goes away from you."

Like many children of the Great Depression, D'Ambruoso shares those memories sparingly.

"I didn't know what it was," she said. "After it was over, that's when we knew it was a depression."

If anyone has heard her tell her full story, it's her grandchildren.

"She's amazing, and an inspiration to all of us," said Damian Paszkiecz, a grandson and high-tech salesman.

After marrying Anthony D'Ambruoso at age 23 and starting a family, life took an unexpected turn for the young wife and mother. Her husband decided to move west, joining relatives who had opened an Italian restaurant in South San Jose.

"I never wanted to come to California," she said. "Who did I know there?"

She stayed put in Connecticut with their children. Months passed. Then one day, one of their sons was caught stealing hubcaps. Sensing things might get worse, she relented and moved to California. Eventually, she became the cook at Georgio's, the family's Italian restaurant, specializing in spaghetti and meatballs.

The D'Ambruosos bought a house on a new cul-de-sac in Cupertino. One of their three children, Lorraine, was accepted to Santa Clara University, but struggled with the costs.

"My father didn't think girls should go to college," Lorraine D'Ambruoso said.

But her mother wouldn't let history repeat itself. Behind her husband's back, D'Ambruoso took money out of the restaurant's cash register to give to her daughter.

"It was her way of making up for not being able to go to college," said Lorraine D'Ambruoso, who became a schoolteacher and then director of the California Language Teachers' Association.

When Lorraine D'Am-bruoso's marriage ended, her mom cared for her three sons, including Paszkiecz, during the day.

"When she goes," Lorraine D'Ambruoso said, "I think my boys will take it harder than I do. After all, she's the one who really raised them."

By the time the youngest went off to college, Louise D'Ambruoso was retired, widowed and outliving friends in her age group. One day, she saw a TV commercial by the Catholic nun who founded Sacred Heart Community Service. The nun said they needed volunteers.

"Sacred Heart hit a bell," she recalled. "I was all through baby-sitting and I thought I would do that."

That was 13 years ago.

D'Ambruoso volunteered twice a week at first, then decided it wasn't enough.

"She's the only volunteer who comes three times a week," said Tracy Ross, the warehouse and pantry supervisor. "I'm very protective of her."

Everything at Sacred Heart seems to work with precision, so there isn't a lot of time for volunteers to chit chat or get acquainted. Becky Cazarez, 68, works the bilingual information desk at the charity, but she came to know D'Ambruoso at the nearby Alma Street Senior Center, where they meet for lunch and a game of cards.

"She's a role model, absolutely," Cazarez said. "If my health holds up, I might be a volunteer at her age when I get there."

Although D'Ambruoso doesn't suffer from arthritis and other maladies that put many willing elderly people on the sidelines, her legs have been tiring faster lately. Her doctor has recommended a two-handed walker, which she rejected faster than she can pack a bologna sandwich.

"There's no room at Sacred Heart for walkers!" D'Ambruoso protested. "I have too many things to do."

As before, being the oldest hasn't slowed her down.

Copyright © 2011 San Jose Mercury News

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At 91, volunteer cranks it up | View Clip
01/29/2011
San Jose Mercury News - Online

Louise D'Ambruoso, 91, left, helps package meals with June Tablak, 90, at Sacred Heart Community Service in San Jose on Jan. 27, 2011. D'Ambruoso volunteers three times a week helping the needy.

At 8 in the morning, the air in the pantry was as cool as a package of bologna from the refrigerator. Louise D'Ambruoso wasn't fazed. The petite, silver-and-brown-haired, Italian sparkplug with a thick, New England accent slipped on a pair of nylon gloves and grabbed a loaf of bread and a box of sliced, American cheese.

"How many SANG-wiches we got to go?" she asked.

Larry Murchan figured several more boxes. The retired engineer had picked up D'Ambruoso earlier that morning at her apartment, as he does about three times a week, and taken her to Sacred Heart Community Service just south of downtown San Jose. They would pack 240 meat and cheese sandwiches, plus 10 of peanut butter and jelly. Other volunteers would deliver them to homeless men, battered women in shelters, day laborers and the working poor.

At age 91, D'Ambruoso sticks to the sandwich assembly line, except for the one day a week she works hanging up donated clothing. Thousands of needy people come to Sacred Heart for food or some sort of social service, but few ever see one of its oldest, hardest-working volunteers.

"I don't like working the front office," D'Ambruoso, of San Jose, said while cutting open a package of peppered turkey with a four-inch knife and pointing it at no one in particular. "Too many people. Too demanding."

Whether she wanted it that way, the back shop became her station in life a long time ago. But now, so what? Life was different

then.

"I usually avoid things like this," D'Ambruoso grumbled.

Things like what?

"Interviews!"

She grabbed her cane from under the table and headed for the volunteers' break room. For three hours, she had nimbly packed sandwich bags with a straight back and without a single slip, and now it was time to stop talking and eat. Some of the other volunteers had baked casseroles for a cook-off.

When D'Ambruoso was 16, her immigrant father took her out of high school to work in a clothing sweatshop in New Haven, Conn., and help support her six younger brothers and sisters.

"I loved school," she recalled. "I told him he was ruining my life."

But she relented and took the job pressing shirts, which paid $5 a week.

"Immigrants and old people said, 'Go to work, bring home money,' " she said. "I was the oldest. That's what we were supposed to do. It never goes away from you."

Like many children of the Great Depression, D'Ambruoso shares those memories sparingly.

"I didn't know what it was," she said. "After it was over, that's when we knew it was a depression."

If anyone has heard her tell her full story, it's her grandchildren.

"She's amazing, and an inspiration to all of us," said Damian Paszkiecz, a grandson and high-tech salesman.

After marrying Anthony D'Ambruoso at age 23 and starting a family, life took an unexpected turn for the young wife and mother. Her husband decided to move west, joining relatives who had opened an Italian restaurant in South San Jose.

"I never wanted to come to California," she said. "Who did I know there?"

She stayed put in Connecticut with their children. Months passed. Then one day, one of their sons was caught stealing hubcaps. Sensing things might get worse, she relented and moved to California. Eventually, she became the cook at Georgio's, the family's Italian restaurant, specializing in spaghetti and meatballs.

The D'Ambruosos bought a house on a new cul-de-sac in Cupertino. One of their three children, Lorraine, was accepted to Santa Clara University, but struggled with the costs.

"My father didn't think girls should go to college," Lorraine D'Ambruoso said.

But her mother wouldn't let history repeat itself. Behind her husband's back, D'Ambruoso took money out of the restaurant's cash register to give to her daughter.

"It was her way of making up for not being able to go to college," said Lorraine D'Ambruoso, who became a schoolteacher and then director of the California Language Teachers' Association.

When Lorraine D'Am-bruoso's marriage ended, her mom cared for her three sons, including Paszkiecz, during the day.

"When she goes," Lorraine D'Ambruoso said, "I think my boys will take it harder than I do. After all, she's the one who really raised them."

By the time the youngest went off to college, Louise D'Ambruoso was retired, widowed and outliving friends in her age group. One day, she saw a TV commercial by the Catholic nun who founded Sacred Heart Community Service. The nun said they needed volunteers.

"Sacred Heart hit a bell," she recalled. "I was all through baby-sitting and I thought I would do that."

That was 13 years ago.

D'Ambruoso volunteered twice a week at first, then decided it wasn't enough.

"She's the only volunteer who comes three times a week," said Tracy Ross, the warehouse and pantry supervisor. "I'm very protective of her."

Everything at Sacred Heart seems to work with precision, so there isn't a lot of time for volunteers to chit chat or get acquainted. Becky Cazarez, 68, works the bilingual information desk at the charity, but she came to know D'Ambruoso at the nearby Alma Street Senior Center, where they meet for lunch and a game of cards.

"She's a role model, absolutely," Cazarez said. "If my health holds up, I might be a volunteer at her age when I get there."

Although D'Ambruoso doesn't suffer from arthritis and other maladies that put many willing elderly people on the sidelines, her legs have been tiring faster lately. Her doctor has recommended a two-handed walker, which she rejected faster than she can pack a bologna sandwich.

"There's no room at Sacred Heart for walkers!" D'Ambruoso protested. "I have too many things to do."

As before, being the oldest hasn't slowed her down.

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At 91, San Jose volunteer cranks it up at Sacred Heart | View Clip
01/29/2011
Cupertino Courier - Online

Louise D'Ambruoso, 91, left, helps package meals with June Tablak, 90, at Sacred Heart Community Service in San Jose on Jan. 27, 2011. D'Ambruoso volunteers three times a week helping the needy.

At 8 in the morning, the air in the pantry was as cool as a package of bologna from the refrigerator. Louise D'Ambruoso wasn't fazed. The petite, silver-and-brown-haired, Italian sparkplug with a thick, New England accent slipped on a pair of nylon gloves and grabbed a loaf of bread and a box of sliced, American cheese.

"How many SANG-wiches we got to go?" she asked.

Larry Murchan figured several more boxes. The retired engineer had picked up D'Ambruoso earlier that morning at her apartment, as he does about three times a week, and taken her to Sacred Heart Community Service just south of downtown San Jose. They would pack 240 meat and cheese sandwiches, plus 10 of peanut butter and jelly. Other volunteers would deliver them to homeless men, battered women in shelters, day laborers and the working poor.

At age 91, D'Ambruoso sticks to the sandwich assembly line, except for the one day a week she works hanging up donated clothing. Thousands of needy people come to Sacred Heart for food or some sort of social service, but few ever see one of its oldest, hardest-working volunteers.

"I don't like working the front office," D'Ambruoso, of San Jose, said while cutting open a package of peppered turkey with a four-inch knife and pointing it at no one in particular. "Too many people. Too demanding."

Whether she wanted it that way, the back shop became her station in life a long time ago. But now, so what? Life was different

then.

"I usually avoid things like this," D'Ambruoso grumbled.

Things like what?

"Interviews!"

She grabbed her cane from under the table and headed for the volunteers' break room. For three hours, she had nimbly packed sandwich bags with a straight back and without a single slip, and now it was time to stop talking and eat. Some of the other volunteers had baked casseroles for a cook-off.

When D'Ambruoso was 16, her immigrant father took her out of high school to work in a clothing sweatshop in New Haven, Conn., and help support her six younger brothers and sisters.

"I loved school," she recalled. "I told him he was ruining my life."

But she relented and took the job pressing shirts, which paid $5 a week.

"Immigrants and old people said, 'Go to work, bring home money,' " she said. "I was the oldest. That's what we were supposed to do. It never goes away from you."

Like many children of the Great Depression, D'Ambruoso shares those memories sparingly.

"I didn't know what it was," she said. "After it was over, that's when we knew it was a depression."

If anyone has heard her tell her full story, it's her grandchildren.

"She's amazing, and an inspiration to all of us," said Damian Paszkiecz, a grandson and high-tech salesman.

After marrying Anthony D'Ambruoso at age 23 and starting a family, life took an unexpected turn for the young wife and mother. Her husband decided to move west, joining relatives who had opened an Italian restaurant in South San Jose.

"I never wanted to come to California," she said. "Who did I know there?"

She stayed put in Connecticut with their children. Months passed. Then one day, one of their sons was caught stealing hubcaps. Sensing things might get worse, she relented and moved to California. Eventually, she became the cook at Georgio's, the family's Italian restaurant, specializing in spaghetti and meatballs.

The D'Ambruosos bought a house on a new cul-de-sac in Cupertino. One of their three children, Lorraine, was accepted to Santa Clara University, but struggled with the costs.

"My father didn't think girls should go to college," Lorraine D'Ambruoso said.

But her mother wouldn't let history repeat itself. Behind her husband's back, D'Ambruoso took money out of the restaurant's cash register to give to her daughter.

"It was her way of making up for not being able to go to college," said Lorraine D'Ambruoso, who became a schoolteacher and then director of the California Language Teachers' Association.

When Lorraine D'Am-bruoso's marriage ended, her mom cared for her three sons, including Paszkiecz, during the day.

"When she goes," Lorraine D'Ambruoso said, "I think my boys will take it harder than I do. After all, she's the one who really raised them."

By the time the youngest went off to college, Louise D'Ambruoso was retired, widowed and outliving friends in her age group. One day, she saw a TV commercial by the Catholic nun who founded Sacred Heart Community Service. The nun said they needed volunteers.

"Sacred Heart hit a bell," she recalled. "I was all through baby-sitting and I thought I would do that."

That was 13 years ago.

D'Ambruoso volunteered twice a week at first, then decided it wasn't enough.

"She's the only volunteer who comes three times a week," said Tracy Ross, the warehouse and pantry supervisor. "I'm very protective of her."

Everything at Sacred Heart seems to work with precision, so there isn't a lot of time for volunteers to chit chat or get acquainted. Becky Cazarez, 68, works the bilingual information desk at the charity, but she came to know D'Ambruoso at the nearby Alma Street Senior Center, where they meet for lunch and a game of cards.

"She's a role model, absolutely," Cazarez said. "If my health holds up, I might be a volunteer at her age when I get there."

Although D'Ambruoso doesn't suffer from arthritis and other maladies that put many willing elderly people on the sidelines, her legs have been tiring faster lately. Her doctor has recommended a two-handed walker, which she rejected faster than she can pack a bologna sandwich.

"There's no room at Sacred Heart for walkers!" D'Ambruoso protested. "I have too many things to do."

As before, being the oldest hasn't slowed her down.

Return to Top



At 91, San Jose volunteer cranks it up at Sacred Heart | View Clip
01/29/2011
San Gabriel Valley Tribune - Online

Louise D'Ambruoso, 91, left, helps package meals with June Tablak, 90, at Sacred Heart Community Service in San Jose on Jan. 27, 2011. D'Ambruoso volunteers three times a week helping the needy.

At 8 in the morning, the air in the pantry was as cool as a package of bologna from the refrigerator. Louise D'Ambruoso wasn't fazed. The petite, silver-and-brown-haired, Italian sparkplug with a thick, New England accent slipped on a pair of nylon gloves and grabbed a loaf of bread and a box of sliced, American cheese.

"How many SANG-wiches we got to go?" she asked.

Larry Murchan figured several more boxes. The retired engineer had picked up D'Ambruoso earlier that morning at her apartment, as he does about three times a week, and taken her to Sacred Heart Community Service just south of downtown San Jose. They would pack 240 meat and cheese sandwiches, plus 10 of peanut butter and jelly. Other volunteers would deliver them to homeless men, battered women in shelters, day laborers and the working poor.

At age 91, D'Ambruoso sticks to the sandwich assembly line, except for the one day a week she works hanging up donated clothing. Thousands of needy people come to Sacred Heart for food or some sort of social service, but few ever see one of its oldest, hardest-working volunteers.

"I don't like working the front office," D'Ambruoso, of San Jose, said while cutting open a package of peppered turkey with a four-inch knife and pointing it at no one in particular. "Too many people. Too demanding."

Whether she wanted it that way, the back shop became her station in life a long time ago. But now, so what? Life was different

then.

"I usually avoid things like this," D'Ambruoso grumbled.

Things like what?

"Interviews!"

She grabbed her cane from under the table and headed for the volunteers' break room. For three hours, she had nimbly packed sandwich bags with a straight back and without a single slip, and now it was time to stop talking and eat. Some of the other volunteers had baked casseroles for a cook-off.

When D'Ambruoso was 16, her immigrant father took her out of high school to work in a clothing sweatshop in New Haven, Conn., and help support her six younger brothers and sisters.

"I loved school," she recalled. "I told him he was ruining my life."

But she relented and took the job pressing shirts, which paid $5 a week.

"Immigrants and old people said, 'Go to work, bring home money,' " she said. "I was the oldest. That's what we were supposed to do. It never goes away from you."

Like many children of the Great Depression, D'Ambruoso shares those memories sparingly.

"I didn't know what it was," she said. "After it was over, that's when we knew it was a depression."

If anyone has heard her tell her full story, it's her grandchildren.

"She's amazing, and an inspiration to all of us," said Damian Paszkiecz, a grandson and high-tech salesman.

After marrying Anthony D'Ambruoso at age 23 and starting a family, life took an unexpected turn for the young wife and mother. Her husband decided to move west, joining relatives who had opened an Italian restaurant in South San Jose.

"I never wanted to come to California," she said. "Who did I know there?"

She stayed put in Connecticut with their children. Months passed. Then one day, one of their sons was caught stealing hubcaps. Sensing things might get worse, she relented and moved to California. Eventually, she became the cook at Georgio's, the family's Italian restaurant, specializing in spaghetti and meatballs.

The D'Ambruosos bought a house on a new cul-de-sac in Cupertino. One of their three children, Lorraine, was accepted to Santa Clara University, but struggled with the costs.

"My father didn't think girls should go to college," Lorraine D'Ambruoso said.

But her mother wouldn't let history repeat itself. Behind her husband's back, D'Ambruoso took money out of the restaurant's cash register to give to her daughter.

"It was her way of making up for not being able to go to college," said Lorraine D'Ambruoso, who became a schoolteacher and then director of the California Language Teachers' Association.

When Lorraine D'Am-bruoso's marriage ended, her mom cared for her three sons, including Paszkiecz, during the day.

"When she goes," Lorraine D'Ambruoso said, "I think my boys will take it harder than I do. After all, she's the one who really raised them."

By the time the youngest went off to college, Louise D'Ambruoso was retired, widowed and outliving friends in her age group. One day, she saw a TV commercial by the Catholic nun who founded Sacred Heart Community Service. The nun said they needed volunteers.

"Sacred Heart hit a bell," she recalled. "I was all through baby-sitting and I thought I would do that."

That was 13 years ago.

D'Ambruoso volunteered twice a week at first, then decided it wasn't enough.

"She's the only volunteer who comes three times a week," said Tracy Ross, the warehouse and pantry supervisor. "I'm very protective of her."

Everything at Sacred Heart seems to work with precision, so there isn't a lot of time for volunteers to chit chat or get acquainted. Becky Cazarez, 68, works the bilingual information desk at the charity, but she came to know D'Ambruoso at the nearby Alma Street Senior Center, where they meet for lunch and a game of cards.

"She's a role model, absolutely," Cazarez said. "If my health holds up, I might be a volunteer at her age when I get there."

Although D'Ambruoso doesn't suffer from arthritis and other maladies that put many willing elderly people on the sidelines, her legs have been tiring faster lately. Her doctor has recommended a two-handed walker, which she rejected faster than she can pack a bologna sandwich.

"There's no room at Sacred Heart for walkers!" D'Ambruoso protested. "I have too many things to do."

As before, being the oldest hasn't slowed her down.

Return to Top



At 91, San Jose volunteer cranks it up at Sacred Heart | View Clip
01/29/2011
Press-Telegram - Online

Click photo to enlarge

Louise D'Ambruoso, 91, left, helps package meals with June Tablak, 90, at Sacred Heart Community Service in San Jose on Jan. 27, 2011. D'Ambruoso volunteers three times a week helping the needy.

At 8 in the morning, the air in the pantry was as cool as a package of bologna from the refrigerator. Louise D'Ambruoso wasn't fazed. The petite, silver-and-brown-haired, Italian sparkplug with a thick, New England accent slipped on a pair of nylon gloves and grabbed a loaf of bread and a box of sliced, American cheese.

"How many SANG-wiches we got to go?" she asked.

Larry Murchan figured several more boxes. The retired engineer had picked up D'Ambruoso earlier that morning at her apartment, as he does about three times a week, and taken her to Sacred Heart Community Service just south of downtown San Jose. They would pack 240 meat and cheese sandwiches, plus 10 of peanut butter and jelly. Other volunteers would deliver them to homeless men, battered women in shelters, day laborers and the working poor.

At age 91, D'Ambruoso sticks to the sandwich assembly line, except for the one day a week she works hanging up donated clothing. Thousands of needy people come to Sacred Heart for food or some sort of social service, but few ever see one of its oldest, hardest-working volunteers.

"I don't like working the front office," D'Ambruoso, of San Jose, said while cutting open a package of peppered turkey with a four-inch knife and pointing it at no one in particular. "Too many people. Too demanding."

Whether she wanted it that way, the back shop became her station in life a long time ago. But now, so what? Life was different

then.

"I usually avoid things like this," D'Ambruoso grumbled.

Things like what?

"Interviews!"

She grabbed her cane from under the table and headed for the volunteers' break room. For three hours, she had nimbly packed sandwich bags with a straight back and without a single slip, and now it was time to stop talking and eat. Some of the other volunteers had baked casseroles for a cook-off.

When D'Ambruoso was 16, her immigrant father took her out of high school to work in a clothing sweatshop in New Haven, Conn., and help support her six younger brothers and sisters.

"I loved school," she recalled. "I told him he was ruining my life."

But she relented and took the job pressing shirts, which paid $5 a week.

"Immigrants and old people said, 'Go to work, bring home money,' " she said. "I was the oldest. That's what we were supposed to do. It never goes away from you."

Like many children of the Great Depression, D'Ambruoso shares those memories sparingly.

"I didn't know what it was," she said. "After it was over, that's when we knew it was a depression."

If anyone has heard her tell her full story, it's her grandchildren.

"She's amazing, and an inspiration to all of us," said Damian Paszkiecz, a grandson and high-tech salesman.

After marrying Anthony D'Ambruoso at age 23 and starting a family, life took an unexpected turn for the young wife and mother. Her husband decided to move west, joining relatives who had opened an Italian restaurant in South San Jose.

"I never wanted to come to California," she said. "Who did I know there?"

She stayed put in Connecticut with their children. Months passed. Then one day, one of their sons was caught stealing hubcaps. Sensing things might get worse, she relented and moved to California. Eventually, she became the cook at Georgio's, the family's Italian restaurant, specializing in spaghetti and meatballs.

The D'Ambruosos bought a house on a new cul-de-sac in Cupertino. One of their three children, Lorraine, was accepted to Santa Clara University, but struggled with the costs.

"My father didn't think girls should go to college," Lorraine D'Ambruoso said.

But her mother wouldn't let history repeat itself. Behind her husband's back, D'Ambruoso took money out of the restaurant's cash register to give to her daughter.

"It was her way of making up for not being able to go to college," said Lorraine D'Ambruoso, who became a schoolteacher and then director of the California Language Teachers' Association.

When Lorraine D'Am-bruoso's marriage ended, her mom cared for her three sons, including Paszkiecz, during the day.

"When she goes," Lorraine D'Ambruoso said, "I think my boys will take it harder than I do. After all, she's the one who really raised them."

By the time the youngest went off to college, Louise D'Ambruoso was retired, widowed and outliving friends in her age group. One day, she saw a TV commercial by the Catholic nun who founded Sacred Heart Community Service. The nun said they needed volunteers.

"Sacred Heart hit a bell," she recalled. "I was all through baby-sitting and I thought I would do that."

That was 13 years ago.

D'Ambruoso volunteered twice a week at first, then decided it wasn't enough.

"She's the only volunteer who comes three times a week," said Tracy Ross, the warehouse and pantry supervisor. "I'm very protective of her."

Everything at Sacred Heart seems to work with precision, so there isn't a lot of time for volunteers to chit chat or get acquainted. Becky Cazarez, 68, works the bilingual information desk at the charity, but she came to know D'Ambruoso at the nearby Alma Street Senior Center, where they meet for lunch and a game of cards.

"She's a role model, absolutely," Cazarez said. "If my health holds up, I might be a volunteer at her age when I get there."

Although D'Ambruoso doesn't suffer from arthritis and other maladies that put many willing elderly people on the sidelines, her legs have been tiring faster lately. Her doctor has recommended a two-handed walker, which she rejected faster than she can pack a bologna sandwich.

"There's no room at Sacred Heart for walkers!" D'Ambruoso protested. "I have too many things to do."

As before, being the oldest hasn't slowed her down.

Return to Top



A POLITICAL SCIENTIST FROM SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY JOINS US TO TALK ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF WHAT'S GONG ON THERE.
01/28/2011
NBC Bay Area News at 6 PM - KNTV-TV

THE SEARCH IN THE PATTERSON CANAL FOR MISSING 4-YEAR-OLD JULIANI CARD NAS ENAS FURNED UP THE SUSPECT'S CAR BUT NO ONE WAS FOUND. THE CAR WAS FOUND, OBVIOUSLY, WE SAW THAT. THE ALLEGED ABDUCTOR, JOSE ROD RODREZ AND JULIANI CARDENAS WERE NOT IN THE CAR, YET THEY STILL COULD BE AT THE CANAL. THEY SAY ALL FINGERS POINT TO THAT BEING THE FACT. THE SHERIFF SAYS THEY WILL CONTINUE TO FOCUS THEIR RECOVERY EFFORTS HERE ON THE CANAL SINCE HE SAYS THERE'S CREDIBLE EVIDENCE TO SHOW THEY COULD STILL BE HERE. WE BELIEVE THAT THERE IS A POSSIBILITY THAT JOSE AND JULIANI ARE STILL IN THE CANAL AND SOMEWHERE DOWNSTREAM. AS ALWAYS, I HAVE BEEN CAUTIOUSLY HOPEFUL THAT WE'LL BRING LITTLE JULIANI HOME ALIVE, BUT THERE'S ABSOLUTELY NO INFORMATION ON EVIDENCE OR ANYTHING ELSE THAT TELLS US THAT THIS CAR WENT IN THE CANAL AND THEN JOSE FLED THE SCENE. AGAIN, HE'S NOT SOPHISTICATED ENOUGH, DOESN'T HAVE THE INFRASTRUCTURE, DOESN'T HAVE THE FINANCING, DOESN'T HAVE THE SUPPORT TO FULL OFF THAT KIND OF ABDUCTION. AND HERE WE ARE A WEEK LATER, OR BETTER THAN A WEEK LATER, AND THERE'S STILL NO SIGN OF THE SUSPECT AND GIULIANI. JULIANI. THE SHERIFF SAYS THEY WILL CONTINUE TO SEARCH THE CANAL DOWNSTREAM HOLDING OUT HOPE THEY WILL FIND JULIANI. AUTHORITIES SAY THE BOY WAS TAKEN FR HIS GRANDMOTHER'S ARMS 11 DAYS AGO. D AN WITNESS REPORTED SEEING THE SUSPECT'S VEHICLE GO INTO THE CANAL THAT VERY NIGHT. JOSE RODRIGUEZ IS ALSOHE EX-BOYFRIEND OF JULIANI'S MOTHER. AUTHORITIES LOC TEDHEHE CAR TS MORNING USING SONAR SCANNING TECHNOLO AND A COMMERCIAL AFTERNOON BUT THEY HAD TO WAIT IN THE CANAL TO GET INTO THE WATER SAFELY. CREWS ONLY HAD A TWO-HOUR WINDOW IN WHICH TO RETRIEVE THE CAR. THEY WERE ABLE TO DO THAT BEFORE THE WATER LEVELS ROSE AGAIN. NOW, MULTIPLE AGENCIES ARE WORKING OUT HERE, AND THE SHERIFF SAYS TLER MEET RIGHT NOW TO DECIDE WHEN THE SEARCH WILL CONTINUE, BUT IT WON'T LIKELY CONTINUE UNTIL TOMORROW MORNING. AS YOU CAN SEE, IT'S VERY FOGGY OUT HERE, WHICH, OF COURSE, HAMPERS THEIR SEARCH EFFORTS. ALL RIGHT, KIMBERLY, THANK YOU. THAT WATER TEMPERATURE IN THE CANAL ABOUT MID 40s, 42 TO 45 DEGREES. THE SHERIFF ADDED, IF THE BODIES ARE STILL IN THE CANAL, IT COULD TAKE UP TO 14 DAYS FOR THE BODIES TO SURFACE. BUT RIGHT NOW, THERE'S NO INDICATION WHETHER THEY'RE IN THE CANAL OR NOT. FROM THE BIG LOCAL NEWS TO THE BIG INTERNATIONAL NEWS. AT ONE POINT TODAY, THE INTERNET WAS SHUT DOWN IN EGYPT. NO FACEBOOK, NO TWITTER, NOTHING COMING OUT OF THERE IN TERMS OF COMMUNICATION. PRESIDENT HOSNI MUBARAK OF EGYPT IS REFUSING TO END HIS 30-YEAR RULE. ROBERT ENGEL IS IN CAIRO WHERE PROTESTORS SAY THEY WILL NOT STOP UNTIL HE IS GONE. POLICE HAVE BEEN PULLED BACK. AS IS THE PARTNER OF EGYPT, WE ARE URGING THAT THERE BE A RESTRAINT ON THE PART OF THE SECURITY FORCES. A CURFEW IS IN PLACE, BUT IT IS NOT BEING OBEYED AND THE PEOPLE HERE ARE CHEERING THE ARMY. IT'S EXACTLY THE SAME AS WHAT HAPPENED IN TUNISIA WHEN THE ARMY OF TUNISIA REFUSED TO BACK THE PRESIDENT. THE PRESIDENT WAS FORCED TO LEAVE THE COUNTRY. PEOPLE HERE HOPE THE SAME PATTERN WILL BE REPEATED IN EGYPT. GET RID OF CORRUPTION AND DICTATORSHIP. WORDS OF FREEDOM BLAST HIM OF WHAT HE'S DONE TO HIS OWN PEOPLE. Reporter: THERE WAS SUPPOSED TO BE A SPEECH BY PRESIDENT MUBARAK, A NATIONAL ADDRESS THIS EVENING. IT NEVER HAPPENED. A LOT OF PEOPLE ARE WONDERING WHEN HE WILL SPEAK AND WHAT HE WILL SAY. THE EGYPTIAN GOVERNMENT HAS SAID IT'S WILLING TO ENGAGE IN A DIALOGUE WITH THE PEOPLE. IT MAY BE TOO LATE FOR DIE MOG. THEY SAY THEY WANT A COMPLETE CHANGE OF THE REGIME. RICHARD ENGEL, NBC NEWS, CAIRO. WELL, CERTAINLY THE UNREST IN EGYPT, VERY DIFFICULT TO IGNORE. THE WHITE HOUSE AND THE PRESIDENT BOTH ADDRESSING TODAY WHY AMERICANS SHOULD BE PAYING ATTENTION TO THIS. A POLITICAL SCIENTIST FROM SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY JOINS US TO TALK ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF WHAT'S GONG ON THERE. EGYPT, THERE ARE STRONG POLITICAL ALLY OF THE UNITED STATES. HAS HAD A STRONG RELATIONSHIP. HOW MUCH OF A THIN LINE DOES THE PRESIDENT HAVE TO WALK WHEN ADDRESSING THE NEEDS OF THE PROTESTORS AND THE DESIRES OF THE PROTESTORS WHILE AT THE SAME TIME ASKING MUBARAK TO MAKE SOME CONCRETE CHANGES IN THAT COUNTRY.

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Facebook Sued, Again, For Kicking Off User | View Clip
01/28/2011
MediaPost.com

For at least the second time in recent months, Facebook has been hit with a lawsuit for allegedly shutting down a user's account. In the latest case, Staten Island resident Mustafa Fteja, who is Muslim, alleges that Facebook discriminated against him based on his religion, according to the . Fteja tells the Post that he didn't violate Facebook's terms of service, which prohibit members from spamming others or posting abusive material. It's not clear why Fteja believes his religion played a role in Facebook's decision. He says that he asked Facebook to explain why it cut him off, but that the company only sent him a form letter stating that he had violated the site's rules. But even if Fteja can prove that Facebook did discriminate against him for religious reasons -- a task that seems daunting, absent additional information -- he will still face an uphill battle in court, says Internet law expert Eric Goldman. That's because federal laws banning religious discrimination apply only to physical places of public accommodation, not cyberspace. What's more, he says, other lawsuits against Web sites for allegedly violating discrimination laws have been tossed for precisely that reason. "Other people have been there, done that, and failed," says Goldman, director of the High Tech Law Institute at Santa Clara University.

Apart from Fteja, Facebook user Karen Beth Young also has a case pending against the social networking service for shuttering her account. Young, who has bipolar disorder, alleges that Facebook violated the Americans with Disabilities Act by closing her account.

In that case, Facebook argues that it isn't subject to the Americans with Disabilities Act because that statute -- like civil rights laws banning religious discrimination -- only applies to physical places of accommodation. (Facebook also argues that Young doesn't make out a case for discrimination because she doesn't spell out any connection between her bipolar disorder and the company's decision to kick her off the site.)

Fteja has requested a court order directing

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The Leadership Challenge Values Cards | View Clip
01/28/2011
Australian PC World

Values in Action

Based on the internationally acclaimed best-seller The Leadership Challenge by Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner, The Leadership Challenge Values Cards Facilitator's Guide offers step-by-step instructions on learning and applying one of the enduring truths of leadership—the truth that values drive commitment. Using the guide's innovative and time-tested activities, trainers, human resource professionals, and consultants can facilitate learning opportunities for executives, managers, and aspiring leaders who are committed to improving their leadership competencies.

As Kouzes and Posner explain, the best leaders have a clear understanding of their personal values and ideals. The Leadership Challenge Values Cards can help any experienced or aspiring leader to clarify these personal values, as well as to build consensus on shared values that will guide them and their teams in taking decisions and actions in all situations. Each of the Values Cards is pre-printed with key words such as creativity, loyalty, and teamwork so that participants can more easily identify and record the values that are most meaningful to them. The Facilitator's Guide contains 11 dynamic activities: 2 introductory activities, 6 Personal Values Drive Commitment Activities, and 3 Shared Values Make a Difference Activities. Facilitators will need to purchase a deck of the cards for each participant.

After the workshop or coaching session, the cards become a take-away for the participants—they can use their deck as a tool for reflection and as an aide for helping to clarify the values with their own constituents. They can also be used at home to engage family members in the all-important conversations about the beliefs they'd like to live by.

Praise for The Leadership Challenge Values Cards Facilitator's Guide

"When I went to the Workshop, I was at a turning point in my professional and personal lives. After doing the Values Cards activity, I realized that I was not 'living my values' to the fullest extent in either area. After the workshop, I had conversations with folks in my personal and professional lives as to what is important to me and what I stand for. As a result, I was able to make adjustments in both areas of my life."

Ken Hurdle, chief ombudsman, CA Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation

James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner are authors of the award-winning and best-selling book, The Leadership Challenge. James Kouzes is the Dean's Executive Professor of Leadership at the Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University. Barry Posner is a Professor of Leadership at the Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University, where he served for 12 years as Dean of the School. Their 360-degree leadership assessment instrument, The Leadership Practices Inventory (LPI) and LPI Online (www.lpionline.com) has helped develop the leadership skills of over 3 million people worldwide. Their website can be found at www.leadershipchallenge.com.

Jo Bell and Renee Harness are partners in Third Eye Leadership in Indianapolis, Indiana. As Certified Masters of The Leadership Challenge, they focus on engaging the leader within people at all levels through workshops and consultancies.

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At 91, San Jose volunteer cranks it up at Sacred Heart | View Clip
01/28/2011
San Jose Mercury News - Online

At 8 in the morning, the air in the pantry was as cool as a package of bologna from the refrigerator. Louise D'Ambruoso wasn't fazed. The petite, silver-and-brown haired, Italian spark plug with a thick, New England accent slipped on a pair of nylon gloves and grabbed a loaf of bread and a box of sliced, American cheese.

"How many SANG-wiches we got to go?" she asked.

Larry Murchan figured several more boxes. The retired engineer had picked up D'Ambruoso earlier that morning at her apartment, as he does about three times a week, and taken her to Sacred Heart Community Service just south of downtown San Jose. They would pack 240 meat and cheese sandwiches, plus 10 of peanut butter and jelly. Other volunteers would deliver them to homeless men, battered women in shelters, day laborers and the working poor.

At age 91, D'Ambruoso sticks to the sandwich assembly line, except for the one day a week she works hanging up donated clothing. Thousands of needy people come to Sacred Heart for food or some sort of social service, but few ever see one of its oldest, hardest-working volunteers.

"I don't like working the front office," said D'Ambruoso of San Jose, cutting open a package of peppered turkey with a four-inch knife and pointing it at no one in particular. "Too many people. Too demanding."

Whether she wanted it that way, the back shop became her station in life a long time ago. But now, so what? Life was different then.

"I

usually avoid things like this" D'Ambruoso grumbled.

Things like what?

"Interviews!"

She grabbed her cane from under the table and headed for the volunteers's break room. For three hours, she had nimbly packed sandwich bags with a straight back and without a single slip, and now it was time to stop talking and eat. Some of the other volunteers had baked casseroles for a cook-off.

When D'Ambruoso was 16, her immigrant father took her out of high school to work in a clothing sweatshop in New Haven, Conn., and help support her six younger brothers and sisters.

"I loved school," she recalled. "I told him he was ruining my life."

But she relented and took the job pressing shirts, which paid $5 a week.

"Immigrants and old people said, 'Go to work, bring home money,' " she said. "I was the oldest. That's what we were supposed to do. It never goes away from you."

Like many children of the Great Depression, D'Ambruoso shares those memories sparingly.

"I didn't know what it was," she said. "After it was over, that's when we knew it was a depression."

If anyone has heard her tell her full story, it's her grandchildren.

"She's amazing, and inspiration to all of us," said Damian Paszkiecz, a grandson and high-tech salesman.

After marrying Anthony D'Ambruoso at age 23 and starting a family, life took an unexpected turn for the young wife and mother. Her husband decided to move west, joining relatives who had started Italian restaurant in south San Jose.

"I never wanted to come to California," she said. "Who did I know there?"

She stayed put in Connecticut with their children. Months passed. Then one day, one of their sons was caught stealing hubcaps. Sensing things might get worse, she relented and moved to California. Eventually, she became the cook at Georgio's, the family's Italian restaurant, specializing in spaghetti and meatballs.

The D'Ambruosos bought a house on a new cul-de-sac in Cupertino. One of their three children, Lorraine, was accepted to Santa Clara University but struggled with the costs.

"My father didn't think girls should go to college," Lorraine D'Ambruoso said.

But her mother wouldn't let history repeat itself. Behind her husband's back, D'Ambruoso took money out of the restaurant's cash register to give to her daughter.

"It was her way of making up for not being able to go to college," said Lorraine D'Ambruoso , who became a school teacher and then director of the California Language Teachers' Association.

When Lorraine D'Ambruoso's marriage ended, her mom cared for her three sons, including Paszkeicz, during the day.

"When she goes," Lorraine D'Ambruoso said, "I think my boys will take it harder than I do. After all, she's the one who really raised them."

By the time the youngest went off to college, Louise D'Ambruoso was retired, widowed and outliving friends in her age group. One day, she saw a TV commercial by the Catholic nun who founded Sacred Heart Community Service. The nun said they needed volunteers.

"Sacred Heart hit a bell," she recalled. "I was all through baby-sitting and I thought I would do that."

That was 13 years ago.

D'Ambruoso volunteered twice a week at first, then decided it wasn't enough.

"She's the only volunteer who comes three times a week," said Tracy Ross, the warehouse and pantry supervisor. "I'm very protective of her."

Everything at Sacred Heart seems to work with precision, so there isn't a lot of time for volunteers to chit chat or get acquainted. Becky Cazarez, 68, works the bilingual information desk at the charity but came to know D'Ambruoso at the nearby Alma Street Senior Center, where they meet for lunch and a game of cards.

"She's a role model, absolutely," Cazarez said. "If my health holds up, I might be a volunteer at her age when I get there."

Although D'Ambruoso doesn't suffer from arthritis and other maladies that put many willing elderly people on the sidelines, her legs have been tiring faster lately. Her doctor has recommended a two-handed walker, which she rejected faster than she can pack a bologna sandwich.

"There's no room at Sacred Heart for walkers!" D'Ambruoso protested. "I have too many things to do."

As before, being the oldest hasn't slowed her down.

Return to Top



MIKE IS FORMER ATTORNEY WITH THE CONSUMER WATCH DOG GROUP TURN AND CATHERINE IS SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY LAW PROFESSOR WITH EXPERTISE IN THE TELECOMMUNICATION INDUSTRY.
01/27/2011
ABC 7 News at 11 PM - KGO-TV

ALL RIGHT THANKS LISA. OAKLAND CHIEF STILL DECIDING WHAT TO DO NOW THAT HE KNOWS HE WON'T BE GOING TO SAN JOSE. CHIEF BASES HE'S JUST NOT SURE HE'S THE RIGHT FIT FOR OAKLAND. STATEMENT BASS RELESSED TONIGHT READS I CONTINUE TO HAVE CONCERNS SURROUNDING THE SUPPORT AND RESOURCES BEING PROVIDED. BASS REPEATEDLY HAS SAID THE DEPARTMENT NEEDS MORE THAN 900 OFFICERS. OAKLAND CURRENTLY HAS FEWER THAN 700 AND THE NUMBER IS EXPECTED TO OP WITH MORE BUDGET CUTS LOOMING. MAYOR KWAN SAYS SHE'S OPTIMISTIC THAT BASS WILL STAY ONS AS CHIEF. NOW TO CONTROVERSIAL FUND RAISER IN SAN FRANCISCO TONIGHT FOR THE CALIFORNIA PUBLIC UTILITY COMMISSION. PEOPLE PROTESTED OUTSIDE 100 ANNIVERSARY DINNER. THEY SAY IT'S APPROPRIATE PG&E AND OTHER UTILITY PAID AS MUCH AS 20,000 DOLLARS A TABLE. SOME OF THE MONEY FROM TONIGHT'S EVENT USED AS SEED MONEY FOR THE NEW P UC FOUNDATION. NON-PROFIT THAT PROVIDE REWARD TRIP AND EDUCATIONAL SERVICES TO STATE P UC EMPLOYEES. PROTESTORS ARE WORRIED. THEY BELIEVE LACKS OVERSIGHT IS PARTLY TO BLAME FOR THE PIPELINE EXPLOSION IN SAN BRUNO. TOTAL CONFLICT OF INTEREST. YOU THINK THAT THE PACIFIC GAS AND ELECTRIC, SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA EDISON, ET CETERA, ARE GIVING THIS MONEY BECAUSE THEY JUST LIKE THE EMPLOYEETHE EMPLOYEES OF C P UC? THIS IS A RECOGNITION OF OUR 100 YEARS. NOTHING TO DO WITH ANYTHING ELSE. Reporter: DESPITE TONIGHT'S PROTEST MANY CONSUMER GROUPS ARE HAPPY WITH THE C P UC 2 NEW APPOINTMENT. MIKE IS FORMER ATTORNEY WITH THE CONSUMER WATCH DOG GROUP TURN AND CATHERINE IS SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY LAW PROFESSOR WITH EXPERTISE IN THE TELECOMMUNICATION INDUSTRY.

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HE IS A SAB SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY LAW PROFESSOR.
01/27/2011
ABC 7 News at 5 PM- KGO-TV

NIM ANYONE SUGGESTS YOUR DEMISE WHAT IT DOES FOR ME IS EMBOLDENS ME I'M GOING TO CONTINUE TO FIGHT AND STAND FOR WHAT I STHI APPROPRIATE AND STATE. AND HE TOOK ON LIMBAUGH DURING A WHITE HOUSE VISIT. HE WAS JUST GOING, MANY CHINESE AMERICANS FOUND IT OFFENSIVE, THE CHILD PSYCHOLOGIST DEMANDED AN APOLOGY. LIMBAUGH REFUSED. WHEN THERE IS A PERSON LIKE RUSH LIMBAUGH THINKING IT'S OKAY TO MOCK AND TO RID YOU'LL YOU'LL RIDICULE AND LAUGH AT DIFFERENT LANGUAGE, THEN, YOU ARE NOW ALLOWING CHILDREN TO THINK THAT IT'S OKAY TO DO THAT. Y WAS TARGETED LAST YEAR WHEN DEMANDING CAL STATE STANISLAUS REVEAL HOW MUCH IT PAID SAVER SARA PALIN TO BE A KEY NOTE SPEAKER. AND THEY'RE LOOKING INTO THE TAXES. THE SENATE SARGEANT AT ARMS FOR SECURITY REASON SAYS IT AVERAGES TWO THREATS A DAY TO COME IN. AND THAT ENCOURAGES MORE PEOPLE TO DO IT. ALL RIGHT. THANK YOU VERY MUCH. AND TWO NEW MEMBERS OF THE CALIFORNIA PUBLIC UTILITIES COMMISSION MADE THEIR PIERS APPEARANCE ON THE JOB THE DAY THE COMMISSION IS LAUNCHING A CONTROVERSIAL NEW FOUNDATION. AN ATTORNEY HAS BEEN AN ADVOCATE WITH THE WATCH DOG GROUP TURN STANDS FOR YOU YILT REFORM NETWORK. HE IS A SAB SANTA CLARA UNIVERSITY LAW PROFESSOR. BOTH CALLING FOR A NEW PIPELINE SAFETY IN THE WAKE OF LAST YEAR'S BLAST IN SAN BRUNO. YIKTS ARE QUESTIONING WHETHER TONIGHT'S DINNER PARTY FROM THIS FOUNDATION. UTILITIES ARE PAYING $20,000 PER TABLE. THERE IS AN OUTSIDE BOARD NO, COMMISSIONERS SIT ON THE BOARD. AND WE'LL NOT HAVE INFLUENCE OVER HOW THEY USE MONEY THEY'VE RAISED. THE VAST MAJORITY OF THE MONEY IS COMING FROM UTILITIES AND THEIR BOARD OF DIRECTORS HAVE BACK GROUNDS IN UTILITY. THE FOUNDATION SAYS IT PLANS TO USE IT FOR ITEMS SUCH AS STAFF REPORT AND ENTERTAINING FOREIGN VISITOR OOTZ NUMBER OF PEOPLE APPLYING FOR UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS IS UP SHARPLY. THE LABOR DEPARTMENT SAYS THERE IS 454,000 NEW CLAIMS LAST WEEK, UP 51,000 FROM THE WEEK BEFORE. AND ANALYSTS SAY IT'S BECAUSE IT'S THE HIGHEST LEVEL SINCE OCTOBER. THERE ARE MORE SIGNS EMERGING NOW SILICON VALLEY'S ECONOMY IS MAKING A COME BACK. REAL ESTATE ANALYSTS SAY DEMAND FOR EMPTY SPACE IS BACK. THAT IS A SIGN COMPANIES ARE EXPANDING. IT'S ENCOURAGING DEVELOPERS TO TAKE NEW HOUSING OFF THE BACK BURNER. A MAJOR SOUTH BAY DEVELOPER SAYS A PROJECT CAN CREATE HUNDREDS OF CONSTRUCTION JOBS. I'M READY TO START 380 UNITS. AND THIS IS IN AND ON RAY STREET HERE OVER BY WILLOW GLENN. I'M IN NEGOTIATION WAS THE CITY OVER FEES. AND, ONCE WE CONCLUDE THOSE NEGOTIATIONS, WE'RE READY TO START. AND THERE IS JUST ONE PROJECT. THE JUDGE SAYS DEMAND WILL CAUSE RENTS TO RISE. AND THERE IS A PROJECTION OF 8 TO 9% INCREASE THIS YEAR. AND A DEADLY HIGH-SPEED CHASE IS RENEWING COMPLAINTS FROM THE OAKLAND POLICE OFFICERS UNION. THE CHASE THROUGH EAST OAKLAND ENDED NEAR OAKLAND COLISEUM YESTERDAY. OFFICERS SHOT AND KILLED A MAN THEY SAY CAME OUT OF A CAR WITH TWO GUNS AIMED IN THE THEM. UNION LEADERS SAY COMPUTERS ONLY WORK HALF THE TIME. THE MAYOR BLAMES THIS PROBLEM ON OPERATOR ERROR. AND THIS UNION SAYS IT'S TOO DANGEROUS FOR THEM TO WORK IN THE ENVIRONMENT THEY'RE IN. NOW, AT THIS POINT WE MIGHT HAVE TO TAKE LEGAL ANS ACTION AGAINST THE CITY REGARDING SAFETY ON THE STREETS. HOW ARE WE GOING TO PROTECT THE PUBLIC? AND COPS HAVEN'T BEEN TRAINED PROPERLY ON THE RADIO WHEN PUSHING BUTTON THIS, MAKES A PRIORITY FOR THE CAR THAT PUSHED THEIR EMERGENCY BUTTON FOR THE SYSTEM. SO IT BLOCKS OFF EVERYBODY ELSE. THE MAN KILLED YESTERDAY HAS BEEN IDENTIFIED AS A 19-YEAR-OLD FROM OAKLAND, A PASSENGER IN THE CAR INVOLVED IN THAT CHASE. AND POLICE CHIEF GAS BAS IS NOT GOING SAN JOSE. SAN JOSE HAS CHOSEN A POLICE CHIEF. OUR PARTNER SAYS IT'S NOT BASS.

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Economists Bullish About 2011, Except For All That Debt | View Clip
01/27/2011
CBS San Francisco - Online

SANTA CLARA (KCBS) – An increase in business spending during 2011 could be undercut by government deficits domestically and abroad, two leading economists warned Thursday.

Dr. Mario Belotti, who teaches at Santa Clara University, and Forbes Magazine publisher Rich Karlgaard both expect the economy to grow this year.

KCBS' Matt Bigler Reports:

“We're celebrating the fact that we think the economy's going to grow three and half or possibly four percent this year,” said Karlgaard, who adds that's mainly due to an increase in business investment.

However, Karlgaard said the growing budget deficits faced by cities and states are not to be underestimated.

”It definitely cramps the strength of the recovery, but I don't think it kills the recovery,” said Karlgaard.

Dr. Belotti's main concern was the Fed going too far with its strategy of quantitative easing.

”They could create more inflation than they expect to have,” said Belotti. “And in that case they might have to go back and increase rates really fast, which might slow the economy down.”

Both men spoke at the Comerica Bank Economic Forecast in Santa Clara.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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Economists Bullish About 2011, Except For All That Debt | View Clip
01/27/2011
AllVoices

An increase in business spending during 2011 could be undercut by government deficits domestically and abroad, two leading economists warned Thursday. Dr. Mario Belotti, who teaches at Santa Clara University, and Forbes Magazine publisher Rich Karlgaard both expect the economy to grow this year....

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HOMICIDE VICTIM FELLED BY BEATING -- 12 YEARS LATER
01/27/2011
San Jose Mercury News

In a murderous month in San Jose, Lowell Noble is perhaps the most surprising victim of all: The 82-year-old man died Jan. 7, authorities say, because of a savage beating that occurred almost 12 years ago.

His attacker has been locked up for years, but on Wednesday, after an unusual ruling by the coroner, San Jose police reopened the case as a homicide.

Noble was suffering from heart problems and diabetes when he died. While he needed a walker to get around, he enjoyed bridge and Reader's Digest in his final years.

However, despite his advanced age and health problems, the most significant factor in Noble's death was trauma to his head -- the traumatic brain injury he suffered on May 15, 1999, in a San Jose house, according to the Santa Clara County medical examiner.

More specifically, Noble suffered aspiration pneumonia because of dysphagia -- a swallowing problem. And that swallowing problem, the death certificate reads, was a direct result of his brain injury.

Prosecutors say it's too soon to tell whether they'll recharge the attacker with murder or manslaughter. That man, Walter Jones, 49, is now serving a 16-year attempted murder sentence for savagely beating Noble and Jones' mother, Linda, whom Noble was dating at the time.

Dr. Michelle Jorden, who signed Noble's death certificate, declined to speak about the case, saying it is against department policy to comment on open homicide investigations.

But Santa Clara County sheriff's Capt. Kevin Jensen, who oversees the coroner's office, said: "In general, the concept of delayed fatals is this: If the event caused an injury, and that injury was the largest contributing factor in the death, then it can be ruled a homicide."

Noble 'never the same'

Family members say that although Noble survived the 1999 attack, he never fully recovered.

"Dad was never the same," his oldest daughter, Mellissa Noble Asmussen, said after his funeral service this week.

He suffered short-term memory loss and was never able to live on his own again after the attack.

Deputy District Attorney Brian Welch said he needs to review the entire case again before deciding whether to recharge Jones. Jones was convicted of two counts of attempted murder and elder abuse. The other person Jones harmed that night was his mother, who lived in Campbell. Attempts to contact Linda Jones were unsuccessful.

Welch did say it would be an uphill battle to obtain a murder conviction. California law presumes that if a victim dies more than three years after an assault, then it is not a result of the crime, but allows arguments to the contrary to be made in court.

"Delayed fatals" happen regularly enough, but the gap between incident and death is usually much closer. In addition to Noble, San Jose had another one this year. Salvador Pena, a 56-year-old music and jewelry store owner in Alum Rock, was stabbed on Dec. 15 and died Jan. 8 as a result of those wounds.

San Jose police list Pena and Noble as 2011 homicide victims, bumping the number to nine -- a high figure in a city that had 20 homicides all of last year.

Delayed fatals that take years, however, are rarer. In one highly unusual case in 2009, a coroner in Virginia ruled a Navy veteran died as the result of a 1976 shooting that left him a quadriplegic. Prosecutors couldn't file charges in that case because Virginia law prevents murder prosecutions if the victim dies more than one year and one day after the fatal wound was inflicted.

Santa Clara University law professor Gerald Uelmen, a member of the O.J. Simpson defense team, said if Jones is charged with murder, "the case would likely come down to be a battle of the experts.

"Clearly, the longer the time lapses, the more difficult it will be," Uelmen said.

But the gory details and legal challenges of Noble's delayed death were not what his two remaining daughters and others chose to remember at his funeral service Tuesday afternoon.

Happier memories

The service was celebrated by a small group, including an old college pal who also attended the University of Oregon, where Noble received bachelor's and master's degrees in chemistry. Noble had 17 patents under his name stemming from the 1950s. Among his inventions were 3-D viewing glasses and electron tube sockets, according to his family He ran his own company, QD Technology, in Los Gatos until he was injured in the attack, his family said.

"Lowell was brilliant," his middle daughter, Melenie Noble Pearson, said in her eulogy.

But Noble Asmussen, 55, of San Jose, said her dad never bounced back after the brutal beating, in which she said Jones punched and kicked her father in the head with his boots: "The doctors said Dad would have been a vegetable if he hadn't been so intelligent."

Still to this day, she doesn't know what set off Jones.

After the attack, Noble was forced to close his business and move in with Noble Pearson and her husband.

Noble's wife, Robyn, died in 1984 of leukemia, and his youngest daughter, Melynda, died in 1996, when she was 32 years old.

The Noble family was surprised to learn that the coroner ruled their dad's death a homicide. And now, Noble Asmussen said she is "torn" about wanting her dad's attacker to be charged with another crime.

"I guess I feel like, yeah, Dad died that day, and now, it's just like we lost his shell," Noble Asmussen said. "But on the other hand, it's been so long. Maybe we just need to let things go."

Contact Lisa Fernandez at 408-920-5002.

Copyright © 2011 San Jose Mercury News

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Nanosat-6 Flight Competition Review winners announced and Nanosat-7 Competition begins | View Clip
01/27/2011
PhysOrg.com

The Nanosatellite-6 Program Flight Competition Review sponsored by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics was held at the Sheraton Uptown Hotel in Albuquerque, New Mexico recently where a panel of judges from the Air Force Research Laboratory, Space Test Program, Air Force Institute of Technology and industry selected the following winners:

1st Place: Michigan Technological University

2nd Place: Cornell University

3rd Place: University of Hawaii

Best Outreach: Missouri University of Science and Technology

Most Improved: University of Hawaii

The teams at the FCR were able to present their nanosatellites and programs orally to the panel of judges. The participants represented eleven universities: St. Louis University, Michigan Tech, Missouri S&T, Montana State University, University of Minnesota, University of Central Florida, Cornell University, University of Hawaii, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Santa Clara University and Georgia Tech.

"One Nanosat-6 satellite will be selected from the winners and then given assistance by AFRL/RV to become fully flight ready," said Dr. Kent Miller, Air Force Office of Scientific Research program manager. "The satellite will be briefed to the Space Experiments Review Board, at the AFRL, Air Force, and DoD levels for the opportunity to be launched as a secondary payload on an (STP) launch."

The University Nanosat Program's Nanosat-7 kick-off event also occurred at the Sheraton Uptown simultaneous to the Nanosat-6 event and featured the following eleven universities who will participate in the competition to build a winning nanosatellite: Boston University, Georgia Tech, University of Hawaii, University of Maryland, University of Michigan, Michigan Tech, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Montana State, Missouri S&T, St. Louis University and the University of Texas, Austin.

"During the private judging session competing schools like to use the time to coordinate with other schools and the industry representatives are able to speak with students who are interested in participating," said Lt. Kelly Cole, deputy program manager, University Nanosat Program, Space Experiments and Programs Branch, Space Vehicles Directorate, Air Force Research Laboratory. "This is a great opportunity for Nanosat-7 participants to mingle and ask questions from schools that have already been through the competition."

The two-year Nanosat programs begin with the publication of a Broad Agency Announcement, which calls for proposals from principal investigators. A panel of experts evaluates the technical excellence of the proposals as well as their relevance to the Air Force mission, the qualification of those who will administer the programs, and the quality of their educational program. The panel selects the universities for the program that culminates in the AIAA Flight Competition Review.

Nanosatellites have recently been in the news because the NanoSat-3 winner, UT Austin's FASTRAC, was launched in last month on an STP launch, and the NanoSat-4 winner, Cornell University's CUSat, is scheduled for launch in Spring 2012 on a Space-X launch.

The University Nanosat program is run jointly by AFOSR and the AFRL Space Vehicles Directorate. AFOSR funds the university programs and the Space Vehicles Directorate supplies the manpower and expertise to administer the program and provide a resource to the students.

Provided by Air Force Office of Scientific Research

This PHYSorg Science News Wire page contains a press release issued by an organization mentioned above and is provided to you “as is” with little or no review from PhysOrg.com staff.

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'The Veil' through March 11 | View Clip
01/27/2011
San Francisco Chronicle - Online

Nearly 30 female artists from around the world explore the practice of veiling in many cultures, finding power, oppression, paradox and complexity. Curated by Jennifer Heath, the traveling exhibition is a companion to her book "The Veil: Women Writers on Its History, Lore and Politics."

Through March 11. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Tues.-Sun. De Saisset Museum, Santa Clara University, 500 El Camino Real, Santa Clara. (408) 554-4528. sfg.ly/h9WoLX.

This article appeared on page G - 12 of the San Francisco Chronicle

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CPUC launches new controversial foundation | View Clip
01/27/2011
ABC Local - Online

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Pipeline safety is a top priority for two new public utilities commissioners and on Thursday afternoon, they promised change, but in the evening they sat down at a swanky dinner party with the very utilities they're supposed to be regulating.

It is a controversial fundraiser that took place at the Julia Morgan ballroom. A group was there to protest against the SmartMeters PG&E installs. Critics of the California Public Utilities Commission believe an overly friendly relationship between the commission and the utilities they're supposed to be regulating contributed to the San Bruno explosion. They say the foundation and dinner a proof they fear the utilities can buy influence. It comes on the same day as two new commissioners promised a new commitment to public safety.

Attorney Mike Florio and Catherine Sandoval took their seats next to commission president Michael Peevey. Florio brings a lifetime of experience as a consumer advocate with utility watchdog group TURN -- The Utility Reform Network.

"I've done this work for almost 33 years and it's mostly about rates and money and who pays and who receives and as we've all learned to our shock and dismay these last six months, what we do is also about human life," said Florio

Sandoval is a Santa Clara University law professor and former bureaucrat with expertise in the telecommunications industry.

The Gov. Jerry Brown appointees take their seats at a critical time; since the deadly San Bruno pipeline explosion, PG&E is facing scathing criticism for sloppy pipeline safety practices and the CPUC is being scrutinized for its regulatory failings.

But the hope for a new era is undercut by the night's CPUC foundation inaugural dinner party, where utilities are among those paying $20,000 a table. The idea is to have funding for things like staff rewards and entertaining foreign visitors.

"I think the appearance is unfortunate and we've got to get better about managing appearances, but this is not the utilities paying for commissioners to take boondoggle trips," said Florio.

"I just learned about this event yesterday, so I'm not really prepared to comment on it. I understand that Commissioner Peevey is the person who has directed the development of this foundation," said Sandoval.

San Bruno residents are outraged.

"I find it important. I'm a retired federal employee and we'd get run out on a rail if we could do that, if we had a foundation that would give rewards and awards to out to our employees," says San Bruno fire victim John McGlothlin.

"The foundation cannot engage in advocacy because it's a non-profit organization. It's going to engage primarily in educational services," says former commissioner Jeff Brown, the foundation vice president.

In addition to the NTSB investigation and the PUC's independent panel investigation into San Bruno, president Peevey on Thursday announced a public investigation process that he will lay out of commission approval at their next meeting.

(Copyright ©2011 KGO-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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After appointments, PUC presidency still up in the air | View Clip
01/27/2011
Capitol Weekly

Gov. Jerry Brown appointed a flurry of new members to the state Public Utilities Commission and the California Energy Commission this week, but a question that has bedeviled the Capitol for weeks remained unanswered: Will there be a new president of the PUC?

Brown has a third vacancy he can fill immediately on the PUC, but he declined to fill a third vacant seat on the panel when he announced his other appointments on Tuesday.

That seat, vacated by Commissioner Nancy Ryan, who Brown shifted to the commission staff, means that the governor can fill the slot with another appointee. He can also name a president – or not. The title does not follow the position.

The current PUC president is Michael Peevey, a former president of Southern California Edison and Edison International. He has headed the PUC for nearly a decade, and he has been a regulatory figure of unusual influence. His connections at the highest levels of the administrations of Gray Davis and Arnold Schwarzenegger translated into power at the PUC, where he was accompanied by political allies.

But now the political landscape has shifted dramatically. Both of Brown's appointments are viewed as aggressively pro-consumer – ratepayer activist Michael Florio, 58, a lawyer with The Utility Reform Network, and Catherine Sandoval, 50, a Santa Clara University law school professor and communications expert, and a Rhodes Scholar. Florio, particularly, has battled the PUC for decades over rates the power of the huge investor-owned utilities, and has not been particularly sympathetic to Peevey, the former utility executive.

Brown is believed to favor John Geesman, a political supporter and former Energy Commission executive, as his third appointment to the PUC, and would be a likely choice as president. But within the administration, there was concern about doing the presidential appointment at the same time as the others because of potentially negative effects on the energy markets. Peevey is not expected to stay on the PUC if Brown names another person as president. The departure of a figure so well-versed in utility operations could cause concern.

At the Energy Commission, Brown named Commissioner Bob Weisenmiller as the new chair effective Feb. 6, filling the position currently held by Karen Douglas. The governor also appointed Carla Peterman, a renewable energy expert from UC Berkeley, to the commission. Peterman, like Sandoval, is a Rhodes scholar.

Weisenmiller, 62, of Berkeley, was a commissioner with the California Energy Commission from 2010 to 2011, He was a co-founder and executive vice president of MRW & Associates from 1986 to 2010 and was a co-founder and executive vice president of Independent Power Corporation from 1982 to 1986. He was an assistant to a commissioner, manager of the Special Projects Office and director of the Office of Policy Development and Program Evaluation with the California Energy Commission from 1977 to 1982.

Peterman, 32, of Oakland, serves on the board of directors for the Utility Reform Network. Peterman has conducted extensive research on solar photovoltaic markets and climate change, including co-authoring a series of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory publications on cost and deployment trends in the U.S. solar photovoltaic market.

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China set to host its own Solar Decathlon | View Clip
01/27/2011
Renewable Energy Magazine

Enero 2011" width="90" hspace="4" vspace="4" border="0" vocusinstance="0">

PV Solar

Applied Materials' Dr. Charlie Gay, President for Applied Solar, recently participated in the signing ceremony with Peking University, the China National Energy Administration and the US Department of Energy to bring Solar Decathlon to China.

Solar energy and innovation were at the forefront of diplomacy when President Barack Obama hosted China's President Hu Jintao in an official state visit at the end of January. As part of the visit, numerous agreements were reached that can improve economic and environmental conditions in their respective countries and around the world. Applied Materials played an important role in creating just one of these agreements, which sets out the terms for establishing a Solar Decathlon competition in China fashioned after the highly successful US model.

Applied Materials signed a memorandum of understanding with Peking University, the China National Energy Administration and the US Department of Energy to bring Solar Decathlon to China.

The Solar Decathlon aims to help bring solar energy technologies to the marketplace faster by demonstrating the attractive design and sustainable living opportunities afforded through solar technology. The Solar Decathlon also educates the college-aged participants and the public about the many benefits of renewable energy and energy efficiency in buildings available today.

Peking University and Applied Materials, with support from the US DOE and the China NEA, will collaborate to design a programme and ensure a successful implementation by 2013 of the Chinese Solar Decathlon competition that will challenge students to design and build a self-sufficient house powered by the sun.

Applied has supported teams from University of Texas-Austin and Santa Clara University at previous US competitions as well as being a national sponsor of the 2009 competition. Additionally, China had two universities participate in Solar Decathlon Europe and one of them, Tianjin in Shanghai, will participate in the US programme in September 2011, in Washington, D.C.

“The Solar Decathlon is a powerful tool to teach young people and the public about renewable energy – especially the fact that renewable energy technologies are available for use today to reduce energy costs and environmental impacts. The extension of the program to China will demonstrate a continued commitment between the US and China to advance renewable energy technology,” said Dr. Mark Pinto, Executive Vice President and head of the Applied Energy and Environmental Solutions and Display group, who has been a strong champion for bringing this program to China.

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CPUC launches new controversial foundation | View Clip
01/27/2011
ABC 7 Morning News at 5 AM - KGO-TV

california public utilities commission, NTSB, PG&E, san bruno fire, san francisco news, heather ishimaru

More: Bio, E-mail, News Team

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Pipeline safety is a top priority for two new public utilities commissioners and on Thursday afternoon, they promised change, but in the evening they sat down at a swanky dinner party with the very utilities they're supposed to be regulating.

It is a controversial fundraiser that took place at the Julia Morgan ballroom. A group was there to protest against the SmartMeters PG&E installs. Critics of the California Public Utilities Commission believe an overly friendly relationship between the commission and the utilities they're supposed to be regulating contributed to the San Bruno explosion. They say the foundation and dinner a proof they fear the utilities can buy influence. It comes on the same day as two new commissioners promised a new commitment to public safety.

Attorney Mike Florio and Catherine Sandoval took their seats next to commission president Michael Peevey. Florio brings a lifetime of experience as a consumer advocate with utility watchdog group TURN -- The Utility Reform Network.

"I've done this work for almost 33 years and it's mostly about rates and money and who pays and who receives and as we've all learned to our shock and dismay these last six months, what we do is also about human life," said Florio

Sandoval is a Santa Clara University law professor and former bureaucrat with expertise in the telecommunications industry.

The Gov. Jerry Brown appointees take their seats at a critical time; since the deadly San Bruno pipeline explosion, PG&E is facing scathing criticism for sloppy pipeline safety practices and the CPUC is being scrutinized for its regulatory failings.

But the hope for a new era is undercut by the night's CPUC foundation inaugural dinner party, where utilities are among those paying $20,000 a table. The idea is to have funding for things like staff rewards and entertaining foreign visitors.

"I think the appearance is unfortunate and we've got to get better about managing appearances, but this is not the utilities paying for commissioners to take boondoggle trips," said Florio.

"I just learned about this event yesterday, so I'm not really prepared to comment on it. I understand that Commissioner Peevey is the person who has directed the development of this foundation," said Sandoval.

San Bruno residents are outraged.

"I find it important. I'm a retired federal employee and we'd get run out on a rail if we could do that, if we had a foundation that would give rewards and awards to out to our employees," says San Bruno fire victim John McGlothlin.

"The foundation cannot engage in advocacy because it's a non-profit organization. It's going to engage primarily in educational services," says former commissioner Jeff Brown, the foundation vice president.

In addition to the NTSB investigation and the PUC's independent panel investigation into San Bruno, president Peevey on Thursday announced a public investigation process that he will lay out of commission approval at their next meeting.

california public utilities commission, NTSB, PG&E, san bruno fire, san francisco news, heather ishimaru

Recently Published

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Jonathan's Space Report No. 637 2011 Jan 26 | View Clip
01/27/2011
SpaceRef.com

Expedition 26 is now underway with crew commander Scott Kelly, flight engineer-2 Aleksandr Kaleri, flight engineer-3 Oleg Skripochka, flight engineer-4 Dmitri Kondratev, flight engineer-5 Paolo Nespoli and flight engineer-6 Cady Coleman aboard the Station. Soyuz TMA-01M is docked at Poisk, Progress M-07M at Zvezda, and Soyuz TMA-20 at Rassvet.

On Jan 21 Kondratev (in spacesuit Orlan-MK No. 5) and Skripochka (in suit No. 4) made a spacewalk to install television equipment on Zvezda and Rassvet and to retrieve exposed experiments. They depressurized the Pirs airlock around 1409 UTC, and opened the hatch at 1429 UTC. At 1653 and 1654 UTC they jettisoned a cable reel and an antenna cover (cataloged as 1998-67CC and 1998-67CD). They returned to Pirs and closed the hatch at 1952 UTC, repressurizing shortly afterwards. (Thanks to Andrey Krasil'nikov for the IDs on the suits).

On Jan 22 the second H-II Transfer Vehicle, "Kounotori" 2 gouki ("White Stork" Unit 2) was launched from Japan's Tanegashima Space Center on the second H-IIB rocket. The 16000 kg spacecraft will link up with the station and deliver cargo. The H-IIB used Pad 2 of the Yoshinobu complex; Pad 1 is used for the H-IIA. Tanegashima also has two other launch sites, Osaki and Takesaki, now retired. Osaki had pads for the N and Q rockets, while Takesaki had launchers for small rockets.

Progress M-08M undocked from Pirs at 0042 UTC on Jan 24 and was deorbited over the Pacific at 0516 UTC.

Nanosail-D2

-----------

The Nanosail-D2 experiment launched in November has belatedly ejected itself from FASTSAT. The ejection occurred at 0300 UTC Jan 18, according to the mission web site at Santa Clara University. The satellite has not yet been cataloged. The solar sail was deployed on Jan 21 at around 0400 UTC.

Elektro-L

---------

Russia's new Elektro-L weather satellite was launched on Jan 20 at 1229 UTC. The Zenit-3SLBF launch vehicle consists of a two-stage Zenit-2SB80 booster and the Fregat-SB upper stage, with an additional SBB (Sbrasivaemiye baki banov, separable propellant tanks) section compared to the original Fregat. The Zenit-2SB80 second stage reached a 179 x 620 km x 51.4 deg orbit; the Fregat upper stage separated as the second stage fired retrockets and jettisoned four separation motor covers into 190 x 850 km orbits. The first Fregat burn reached 298 x 4406 km x 50.4 deg, after which the SBB separated. At 1558 UTC the Fregat then made a burn to 356 x 35753 km x 48.5 deg geostationary transfer orbit. A third Fregat burn at 2119 UTC put the spacecraft in a 35627 x 35870 km x 0.46 deg geosynchronous orbit over the Indian Ocean. Fregat then separated and was placed in a subsynchronous drift orbit of 34195 x 35718 km with a final burn.

Elektro-L is the first use of the Lavochkin company's new Navigator bus, also to be used for future science satellites. The spacecraft carries a scanning visible/infrared radiometer, solar environment monitors and a COSPAS-SARSAT search-and-rescue transponder system. Spacecraft mass at launch is around 1700 kg.

NRO satellite

-------------

A US National Reconnaissance Office satellite, codenamed USA 224, was launched from Vandenberg AFB on Jan 20 aboard a Delta 4 Heavy rocket. Launch NROL-49 carried the payload into a 252 x 1023 km x 97.9 deg polar orbit. Observations of its orbit are consistent with reports that it is an Improved CRYSTAL type (KH-11 derivative) imaging reconnaissance satellite; congratulations to Bob Christy for picking it up so quickly.

Table of Recent (orbital) Launches

----------------------------------

Date UT Name Launch Vehicle Site Mission INTL.

DES.

Dec 6 1025 Glonass-M ) Proton-M/DM-3 Baykonur Navigation F03

Glonass-M ) Navigation F03

Glonass-M ) Navigation F03

Dec 8 1543 Dragon C1 ) Falcon 9 Canaveral SLC40 Spaceship 66A

SMDC-One ) Comms? 66C

QbX-1 ) Secret 66F

QbX-2 ) Secret 66B

Perseus 000 ) Tech? 66H

Perseus 001 ) Tech? 66E

Perseus 002 ) Tech? 66G

Perseus 003 ) Tech? 66D

Caerus/Mayflower) Tech 66J

Dec 15 1909 Soyuz TMA-20 Soyuz-FG Baykonur LC1 Spaceship 67A

Dec 17 2020 Beidou DW7 Chang Zheng 3A Xichang Navigation 68A

Dec 25 1034 GSAT-5P GSLV Sriharikota SLP Comms F04

Dec 26 2151 KA-SAT Proton-M/Briz-M Baykonur LC200/39 Comms 69A

Dec 29 2127 Hispasat 1E ) Ariane 5ECA Kourou Comms 70A

Koreasat 6 ) Comms 70B

Jan 18 0300 Nanosail-D2 Fastsat, LEO Tech 62

Jan 20 1229 Elektro-L Zenit-3SLBF Baykonur LC45 Weather 01A

Jan 20 2110 USA 224 Delta 4H Vandenberg SLC6 Imaging 02A

Jan 22 0537 Kounotori 2 H-IIB Tanegashima Y2 Cargo 03A

Table of Recent (suborbital) Launches

----------------------------------

Date UT Payload/Flt Name Launch Vehicle Site Mission Apogee/km

Dec 4 0421 ECOMA 7 Nike Orion Andoya Meteor dust 135

Dec 5 1911 Topol' RV Topol' Kapustin Yar Test 1000?

Dec 6 1719 Maracati 2 Orion Alcantara Range Test 103

Dec 6 1730? NASA 41.087NT Terrier Orion White Sands Tech 120

Dec 12 0638 NASA 40.026UE Black Brant XII Andoya Aurora 500?

Dec 12 1535 MICROG 1A VSB-30 Alcantara Micrograv 242

Dec 13 0324 ECOMA 8 Nike Orion Andoya Meteor dust 138

Dec 15 1957? FTG-06A Target LV-2 Meck Island Target 1000?

Dec 15 2003 FTG-06A KV GBI Vandenberg LF23 Interceptor 1000?

Dec 19 0236 ECOMA 9 Nike Orion Andoya Meteor dust 135?

Jan 22 0610 Aegis Target Terrier Oriole Wallops I. Target 100?

.-------------------------------------------------------------------------.

| Jonathan McDowell | phone : (617) 495-7176 |

| Somerville MA 02143 | inter : jcm@www.planet4589.org |

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Bay Area Jesuit Groups to Hold Mass and Reception in Support of Immigration Reform, Feb. 5 in San Jose
01/26/2011
KIQI-AM

The San Francisco-based Spanish language station KIQI 1010 AM featured a spot telling its listeners about an upcoming Feb. 5 mass and reception sponsored by Santa Clara University and four other Bay Area Jesuit groups, focused on immigration law reform. The spot noted that attendees would present Zoe Lofgren with a letter supporting immigration law reform.

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Gov. Brown names Campbell woman to PUC | View Clip
01/26/2011
Business Review - Online

Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday announced the appointment of Catherine Sandoval to the California Public Utilities Commission.

Sandoval, a Campbell resident, has been an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law since 2004.

Sandoval was previously undersecretary and senior policy advisor for housing with the Business, Transportation and Housing Agency from 2001 to 2004. She was vice president and general counsel with Z-Spanish Media Corporation from 1999 to 2001 and was director of the Office of Communications Business Opportunities for the Federal Communications Commission from 1994 to 1999.

Sandoval, a Democrat, was an associate with Munger, Tolles & Olson from 1991 to 1994. She earned a J.D. from Stanford Law School, a Master of Letters in political science from Oxford, where she was a Rhodes Scholar, and a B.A. from Yale.

This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $128,109.

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Consumer-friendly picks for PUC | View Clip
01/26/2011
Daily News, The

In a move that signals a more proconsumer approach to the state's energy issues, Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday announced key appointments to both the California Public Utilities Commission and the California Energy Commission.

Attorney Michael Florio, 58, of Oakland has been appointed to the PUC after spending more than three decades representing ratepayers on behalf of the nonprofit consumer advocacy group TURN, The Utility Reform Network. Also named to the commission was Catherine Sandoval, a telecommunications expert and Santa Clara University law professor.

The PUC is an increasingly influential regulatory agency that has come under fire for being too close to the utilities it regulates. Assemblyman Jerry Hill, who represents San Bruno and much of San Mateo County, welcomed the new appointments.

“Both appointees have stellar reputations as thoughtful and forceful advocates for consumers,” Hill said in a statement. “In the aftermath of the deadly gas pipeline explosion in San Bruno, it is my hope that they will provide the crucial oversight that is needed to end a culture of complacency on the commission.”

The PUC's five commissioners serve staggered, six-year terms and earn salaries of $128,109 a year. Commissioners Florio and Sandoval will join President Michael Peevey and Commissioner Timothy Alan Simon at the PUC's meeting Thursday.

Florio, a former blues club owner, joined TURN as an unpaid volunteer after graduating from law school in 1978 and has been with the organization ever since. “Consumers in California now have a CPUC Commissioner they can depend on,” said TURN executive director Mark Toney. “Mike Florio is eminently qualified to serve on an agency whose mission is to ‘protect the public interest by protecting consumers.' His expertise and dedication are likely to help the commission rehabilitate its tarred image.”

Sandoval, of Campbell, is an expert in international telecommunications development law and policy. She served as vice president and general counsel for Z-Spanish Media before joining Santa Clara University.

The PUC employs nearly 1,000 people and regulates privately owned electric, natural gas, telecommunications, water, railroad, rail transit and passenger transportation companies. Brown has one more appointment to make on the fivemember panel, and a spokesman said Tuesday that he'll announce the third appointment when he finds the right person.

Bay Area News Group file

Members of TURN, Lenny Goldberg, right, andMichael Florio, whisper during Assemblyman Roderick Wright's committee meeting in 2001.

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Gov. Brown shows pro-consumer tilt in regulatory appointments | View Clip
01/26/2011
California Chronicle

Jan. 26--In a move that signals a more pro-consumer approach to the state's energy issues, Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday announced key appointments to both the California Public Utilities Commission and the California Energy Commission.

Attorney Michael Florio, 58, of Oakland has been appointed to the PUC after spending more than three decades representing ratepayers on behalf of the nonprofit consumer advocacy group TURN, The Utility Reform Network. Also named to the commission was Catherine Sandoval, a telecommunications expert and Santa Clara University law professor.

The PUC is an increasingly influential regulatory agency that has come under fire for being too close to the utilities it regulates. Assemblyman Jerry Hill, who represents San Bruno and much of San Mateo County, welcomed the new appointments.

"Both appointees have stellar reputations as thoughtful and forceful advocates for consumers," Hill said in a statement. "In the aftermath of the deadly gas pipeline explosion in San Bruno, it is my hope that they will provide the crucial oversight that is needed to end a culture of complacency on the commission."

The PUC's five commissioners serve staggered, six-year terms and earn salaries of $128,109 a year. Commissioners Florio and Sandoval will join President Michael Peevey and Commissioner Timothy Alan Simon at the PUC's meeting Thursday.

Florio, a former blues club owner, joined TURN as an unpaid volunteer after graduating

from law school in 1978 and has been with the organization ever since.

"Consumers in California now have a CPUC Commissioner they can depend on," said TURN executive director Mark Toney. "Mike Florio is eminently qualified to serve on an agency whose mission is to 'protect the public interest by protecting consumers.' His expertise and dedication are likely to help the commission rehabilitate its tarred image."

Sandoval, of Campbell, is an expert in international telecommunications development law and policy. She served as vice president and general counsel for Z-Spanish Media before joining Santa Clara University.

The PUC employs nearly 1,000 people and regulates privately owned electric, natural gas, telecommunications, water, railroad, rail transit and passenger transportation companies. Brown has one more appointment to make on the five-member panel, and a spokesman said Tuesday that he'll announce the third appointment when he finds the right person.

The governor also announced two appointments to the California Energy Commission: Robert Weisenmiller, 62, of Berkeley, who was a commissioner from 2010 to 2011, and Carla Peterman, 32, of Oakland. Weisenmiller was a co-founder and executive vice president of MRW & Associates, an energy consulting firm. Peterman is a Ph.D. candidate at the UC Berkeley who has conducted extensive research on solar photovoltaic markets and climate change.

Contact Dana Hull at 408-920-2706. Follow her at Twitter.com/danahull.

-----

To see more of the San Jose Mercury News, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.mercurynews.com.

Copyright (c) 2011, San Jose Mercury News, Calif.

Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

For more information about the content services offered by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services (MCT), visit www.mctinfoservices.com.

A service of YellowBrix, Inc.

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Brown appoints 2 to PUC
01/26/2011
Los Angeles Times

Appointment

Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday named a leading consumer advocate to serve on the California Public Utilities Commission, one of the state's most powerful regulatory bodies.

Michael Florio, a senior attorney for the Utility Reform Network, known as TURN, was appointed to serve a five-year term. Brown also named Catherine Sandoval, a Santa Clara University law professor, telecommunications expert and former Rhodes scholar, to the five-member, constitutionally independent panel.

The utilities commission oversees companies supplying electricity, natural gas, telephone and cable television service to millions of homes and businesses.

The governor reappointed Robert Weisenmiller, an energy consultant, to the California Energy Commission and designated him to serve as chairman, beginning Feb. 6. Weisenmiller has four years left on his five-year term. A second, five-year slot went to Carla Peterman, a UC Berkeley doctoral candidate, solar-energy specialist and another Rhodes scholar.

The energy commission is charged with licensing power plants, setting efficiency standards for appliances and buildings, and conducting research and analysis on a range of energy-related issues.

The four appointees, who must be confirmed by the state Senate, won praise from one of the Legislature's top energy officials, Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima), chairman of the Senate Energy, Utilities and Communications Committee.

"Gov. Brown's appointments reflect his desire to move California forward in the areas of clean energy and telecommunications while controlling costs to ratepayers," Padilla said. "Given the challenging economy, that makes a lot of sense."

--

marc.lifsher@latimes.com

Copyright © 2011 Los Angeles Times

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Capitol Alert: Jerry Brown appoints Florio, Sandoval to PUC | View Clip
01/26/2011
Modesto Bee - Online, The

Gov. Jerry Brown today filled two positions on the powerful California Public Utilities Commission, appointing consumer advocate Mike Florio and law professor Catherine Sandoval to the regulatory board.

Florio, 58, has been a lawyer for The Utility Reform Network, a consumer advocacy group. He was previously a member of the board of governors of the California Independent System Operator.

Sandoval, 50, has been an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law since 2004.

Like Brown, both Florio and Sandoval are Democrats. They are each to be paid $128,109 a year.

Brown also announced two appointments to the California Energy Commission. Robert Weisenmiller, 62, a decline-to-state voter, was appointed to the commission by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger last year. Carla Peterman, 32, a Democrat, is a PhD candidate at University of California, Berkeley. Both are to be paid $128,109 a year.

Brown last week appointed Public Utilities Commission member Nancy Ryan deputy executive director of the agency, leaving one more spot on the commission for him to fill.

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Brown shakes up boards overseeing California power | View Clip
01/26/2011
Petaluma360.com

SACRAMENTO — Gov. Jerry Brown has appointed more members to the bodies that oversee California's utilities and energy.

On Tuesday, Brown appointed Mike Florio and Catherine Sandoval to the Public Utilities Commission, and Robert Weisenmiller and Carla Peterman to the California Energy Commission.

Florio is an attorney with a San Francisco-based utility reform advocacy group that has publicly criticized regulators. Sandoval is an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law.

Weisenmiller has served on the energy commission since last year, while Peterman is also on the board of directors for the utility reform group.

All the positions have a salary of $128,109 and require state Senate approval.

Last week, Brown appointed PUC commissioner Nancy Ryan to deputy executive director.

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BRIEF: Brown names two to PUC Wednesday January 26, 2011 08:22:52 EST | View Clip
01/26/2011
Quote.com India

Governor Jerry Brown filled two of three open seats on the Public Utilities Commission on Tuesday.

The commission regulates investor-owned utilities such as San Diego Gas & Electric Co., Southern California Gas Co. and Southern California Edison.

Brown named Mike Florio, a staff attorney since 1978 for consumer advocate The Utilities Reform Network.

He also appointed Catherine Sandoval, a law professor at Santa Clara University Law School with past experience as a staffer at the Federal Communications Commission.

Both appointees are Democrats, and both must be confirmed by the state Senate within a year.

Copyright (C) 2011, North County Times, Escondido, Calif.

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BRIEF: Brown names two to PUC | View Clip
01/26/2011
TradingMarkets.com

Governor Jerry Brown filled two of three open seats on the Public Utilities Commission on Tuesday.

The commission regulates investor-owned utilities such as San Diego Gas & Electric Co., Southern California Gas Co. and Southern California Edison.

Brown named Mike Florio, a staff attorney since 1978 for consumer advocate The Utilities Reform Network.

He also appointed Catherine Sandoval, a law professor at Santa Clara University Law School with past experience as a staffer at the Federal Communications Commission.

Both appointees are Democrats, and both must be confirmed by the state Senate within a year.

For full details on (SOCGP) SOCGP. (SOCGP) has Short Term PowerRatings at TradingMarkets. Details on (SOCGP) Short Term PowerRatings is available at This Link.

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Gov. Jerry Brown shakes up PUC board | View Clip
01/26/2011
ABC Local - Online

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Gov. Jerry Brown has appointed more members to the bodies that oversee California's utilities and energy.

On Tuesday, Brown appointed Mike Florio and Catherine Sandoval to the Public Utilities Commission, and Robert Weisenmiller and Carla Peterman to the California Energy Commission.

Florio is an attorney with a San Francisco-based utility reform advocacy group that has publicly criticized regulators. Sandoval is an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law.

Weisenmiller has served on the energy commission since last year, while Peterman is also on the board of directors for the utility reform group.

All the positions have a salary of $128,109 and require state Senate approval.

Last week, Brown appointed PUC commissioner Nancy Ryan to deputy executive director.

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Nanosat-6 Flight Competition Review winners announced and Nanosat-7 Competition begins | View Clip
01/26/2011
EurekAlert!

IMAGE: This is NS-3 winner FASTRAC on its way to orbit.

The Nanosatellite-6 Program Flight Competition Review sponsored by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics was held at the Sheraton Uptown Hotel in Albuquerque, New Mexico recently where a panel of judges from the Air Force Research Laboratory, Space Test Program, Air Force Institute of Technology and industry selected the following winners:

1st Place: Michigan Technological University

2nd Place: Cornell University

3rd Place: University of Hawaii

Best Outreach: Missouri University of Science and Technology

Most Improved: University of Hawaii

The teams at the FCR were able to present their nanosatellites and programs orally to the panel of judges. The participants represented eleven universities: St. Louis University, Michigan Tech, Missouri S&T, Montana State University, University of Minnesota, University of Central Florida, Cornell University, University of Hawaii, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Santa Clara University and Georgia Tech.

"One Nanosat-6 satellite will be selected from the winners and then given assistance by AFRL/RV to become fully flight ready," said Dr. Kent Miller, Air Force Office of Scientific Research program manager. "The satellite will be briefed to the Space Experiments Review Board, at the AFRL, Air Force, and DoD levels for the opportunity to be launched as a secondary payload on an (STP) launch."

The University Nanosat Program's Nanosat-7 kick-off event also occurred at the Sheraton Uptown simultaneous to the Nanosat-6 event and featured the following eleven universities who will participate in the competition to build a winning nanosatellite: Boston University, Georgia Tech, University of Hawaii, University of Maryland, University of Michigan, Michigan Tech, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Montana State, Missouri S&T, St. Louis University and the University of Texas, Austin.

"During the private judging session competing schools like to use the time to coordinate with other schools and the industry representatives are able to speak with students who are interested in participating," said Lt. Kelly Cole, deputy program manager, University Nanosat Program, Space Experiments and Programs Branch, Space Vehicles Directorate, Air Force Research Laboratory. "This is a great opportunity for Nanosat-7 participants to mingle and ask questions from schools that have already been through the competition."

The two-year Nanosat programs begin with the publication of a Broad Agency Announcement, which calls for proposals from principal investigators. A panel of experts evaluates the technical excellence of the proposals as well as their relevance to the Air Force mission, the qualification of those who will administer the programs, and the quality of their educational program. The panel selects the universities for the program that culminates in the AIAA Flight Competition Review.

Nanosatellites have recently been in the news because the NanoSat-3 winner, UT Austin's FASTRAC, was launched in last month on an STP launch, and the NanoSat-4 winner, Cornell University's CUSat, is scheduled for launch in Spring 2012 on a Space-X launch.

The University Nanosat program is run jointly by AFOSR and the AFRL Space Vehicles Directorate. AFOSR funds the university programs and the Space Vehicles Directorate supplies the manpower and expertise to administer the program and provide a resource to the students.

ABOUT AFOSR:

The Air Force Office of Scientific Research in Arlington, Virginia, continues to expand the horizon of scientific knowledge through its leadership and management of the Air Force's basic research program. As a vital component of the Air Force Research Laboratory, AFOSR's mission is to discover, shape and champion basic science that profoundly impacts the f

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Nanosat-6 flight competition review winners announced | View Clip
01/26/2011
Aerotech News and Review

Nanosat-7 competition begins

Air Force photograph by David Voss

The NS-3 winner FASTRAC on its way to orbit.

Arlington, Va.

The Nanosatellite-6 Program Flight Competition Review sponsored by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics was held at the Sheraton Uptown Hotel in Albuquerque, N.M., recently where a panel of judges from the Air Force Research Laboratory, Space Test Program, Air Force Institute of Technology and industry selected the following winners:

1st Place: Michigan Technological University

2nd Place: Cornell University

3rd Place: University of Hawaii

Best Outreach: Missouri University of Science and Technology

Most Improved: University of Hawaii

The teams at the FCR were able to present their nanosatellites and programs orally to the panel of judges. The participants represented eleven universities: St. Louis University, Michigan Tech, Missouri S&T, Montana State University, University of Minnesota, University of Central Florida, Cornell University, University of Hawaii, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Santa Clara University and Georgia Tech.

"One Nanosat-6 satellite will be selected from the winners and then given assistance by AFRL/RV to become fully flight ready," said Dr. Kent Miller, Air Force Office of Scientific Research program manager. "The satellite will be briefed to the Space Experiments Review Board, at the AFRL, Air Force, and DOD levels for the opportunity to be launched as a secondary payload on an launch."

The University Nanosat Program's Nanosat-7 kick-off event also occurred at the Sheraton Uptown simultaneous to the Nanosat-6 event and featured the following eleven universities who will participate in the competition to build a winning nanosatellite: Boston University, Georgia Tech, University of Hawaii, University of Maryland, University of Michigan, Michigan Tech, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Montana State, Missouri S&T, St. Louis University and the University of Texas, Austin.

"During the private judging session competing schools like to use the time to coordinate with other schools and the industry representatives are able to speak with students who are interested in participating," said Lt. Kelly Cole, deputy program manager, University Nanosat Program, Space Experiments and Programs Branch, Space Vehicles Directorate, Air Force Research Laboratory. "This is a great opportunity for Nanosat-7 participants to mingle and ask questions from schools that have already been through the competition."

The two-year Nanosat programs begin with the publication of a Broad Agency Announcement, which calls for proposals from principal investigators. A panel of experts evaluates the technical excellence of the proposals as well as their relevance to the Air Force mission, the qualification of those who will administer the programs, and the quality of their educational program. The panel selects the universities for the program that culminates in the AIAA Flight Competition Review.

Nanosatellites have recently been in the news because the NanoSat-3 winner, UT Austin's FASTRAC, was launched in last month on an STP launch, and the NanoSat-4 winner, Cornell University's CUSat, is scheduled for launch in Spring 2012 on a Space-X launch.

The University Nanosat program is run jointly by AFOSR and the AFRL Space Vehicles Directorate. AFOSR funds the university programs and the Space Vehicles Directorate supplies the manpower and expertise to administer the program and provide a resource to the students.

The Air Force Office of Scientific Research in Arlington, Va., continues to expand the horizon of scientific knowledge through its leadership and management of the Air Force's basic research program. As a vital component of the Air Force Research Laboratory, AFOSR's mission is to discover, shape and champion basic science that profoundly impacts the future Air Force.

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California Governor Makes Changes At Utilities Commission | View Clip
01/26/2011
Morningstar.com

SAN FRANCISCO -(Dow Jones)- California Gov.

Jerry Brown on Tuesday appointed a consumer advocate and a law professor to the state's utilities commission in two of three closely watched appointments that could affect utilities and other companies regulated by the state.

Brown also appointed two people to the state's energy commission.

The governor appointed to the California Public Utilities Commission Mike Florio, a long-time senior attorney for consumer advocate The Utility Reform Network and a former board member of grid operator the California Independent Operator; and

Catherine Sandoval, an associate professor at the Santa Clara University School of Law.

The appointments allow the commission to convene and make decisions during a regularly scheduled meeting on Thursday. Brown also is expected to appoint a third person to fill a remaining vacancy on the CPUC.

With the authority to approve or reject billions of dollars a year in utility contracts, energy projects, and utility rates and tariffs, CPUC is one of the nation's most powerful energy regulators. The agency oversees most of the activities and spending of California's three largest utilities, owned by PG&E Corp. (PCG), Edison International (EIX) and Sempra Energy (SRE), and also regulates telecommunications companies, railroads, moving companies, passenger carriers, water utilities and operators of in-state pipelines.

Edison spokesman

Gil Alexander declined to comment on the CPUC appointment process, saying it would be "inappropriate" for the utility to comment "on a body that regulates us."

Telephone calls to Brown's office and to PG&E and San Diego Gas & Electric Co. were not immediately returned.

The CPUC has been investigating, with its federal counterparts, the fatal explosion last September of a PG&E natural gas pipeline in San Bruno, Calif. The state agency has also said it is considering fines for PG&E over a separate 2008 gas pipeline explosion in Rancho Cordova, Calif., that killed one person and injured five others.

The CPUC's two existing commissioners include President

Michael Peevey, a former Edison International executive appointed in 2002 by then-Gov. Gray Davis; and

Timothy Simon, a former staffer of former Gov.

Arnold Schwarzenegger, appointed in 2007.

Two CPUC seats became vacant Jan. 1 after two commissioners reached the end of their terms, and last Thursday Nancy Ryan resigned from the commission. On Friday, Brown appointed Ryan to deputy executive director of the CPUC, a job she held before Schwarzenegger appointed her to the commission in 2009.

Brown also appointed two people to the California Energy Commission, which issues permits for power generating facilities and plays a key role in setting state energy policies.

Brown reappointed CEC Commissioner

Robert Weisenmiller and made him chairman, and also appointed

Carla Peterman, a board member of The Utility Reform Network, to the commission. Weisenmiller's term had expired Jan. 1.

Existing CEC members include former Chair

Karen Douglas, Vice Chair

James Boyd and

Jeffrey Byron.

All CPUC and CEC commissioner appointments require confirmation by the state Senate.

Cassandra Sweet, Dow Jones Newswires; 415-439-6468; cassandra.sweet@ dowjones.com

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California Governor Makes Changes At Utilities Commission | View Clip
01/26/2011
SmartMoney - Online

Dow Jones Newswire

SAN FRANCISCO -(Dow Jones)- California Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday appointed a consumer advocate and a law professor to the state's utilities commission in two of three closely watched appointments that could affect utilities and other companies regulated by the state.

Brown also appointed two people to the state's energy commission.

The governor appointed to the California Public Utilities Commission Mike Florio, a long-time senior attorney for consumer advocate The Utility Reform Network and a former board member of grid operator the California Independent Operator; and Catherine Sandoval, an associate professor at the Santa Clara University School of Law.

The appointments allow the commission to convene and make decisions during a regularly scheduled meeting on Thursday. Brown also is expected to appoint a third person to fill a remaining vacancy on the CPUC.

With the authority to approve or reject billions of dollars a year in utility contracts, energy projects, and utility rates and tariffs, CPUC is one of the nation's most powerful energy regulators. The agency oversees most of the activities and spending of California's three largest utilities, owned by PG&E Corp. (PCG), Edison International (EIX) and Sempra Energy (SRE), and also regulates telecommunications companies, railroads, moving companies, passenger carriers, water utilities and operators of in-state pipelines.

Edison spokesman Gil Alexander declined to comment on the CPUC appointment process, saying it would be "inappropriate" for the utility to comment "on a body that regulates us."

Telephone calls to Brown's office and to PG&E and San Diego Gas & Electric Co. were not immediately returned.

The CPUC has been investigating, with its federal counterparts, the fatal explosion last September of a PG&E natural gas pipeline in San Bruno, Calif. The state agency has also said it is considering fines for PG&E over a separate 2008 gas pipeline explosion in Rancho Cordova, Calif., that killed one person and injured five others.

The CPUC's two existing commissioners include President Michael Peevey, a former Edison International executive appointed in 2002 by then-Gov. Gray Davis; and Timothy Simon, a former staffer of former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, appointed in 2007.

Two CPUC seats became vacant Jan. 1 after two commissioners reached the end of their terms, and last Thursday Nancy Ryan resigned from the commission. On Friday, Brown appointed Ryan to deputy executive director of the CPUC, a job she held before Schwarzenegger appointed her to the commission in 2009.

Brown also appointed two people to the California Energy Commission, which issues permits for power generating facilities and plays a key role in setting state energy policies.

Brown reappointed CEC Commissioner Robert Weisenmiller and made him chairman, and also appointed Carla Peterman, a board member of The Utility Reform Network, to the commission. Weisenmiller's term had expired Jan. 1.

Existing CEC members include former Chair Karen Douglas, Vice Chair James Boyd and Jeffrey Byron.

All CPUC and CEC commissioner appointments require confirmation by the state Senate.

-By Cassandra Sweet, Dow Jones Newswires; 415-439-6468; cassandra.sweet@dowjones.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

01-25-11 1731ET

Published January 25, 2011 5:31 PM

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Florez overlooked in commission appointments | View Clip
01/26/2011
iStockAnalyst

(Source: The Bakersfield Californian)By John Cox, The Bakersfield Californian

Jan. 26--Two appointments Tuesday to the state Public Utilities Commission left Shafter hopeful Dean Florez -- the former Senate majority leader who has led criticism of Pacific Gas and Electric Co. and its SmartMeters -- with one or at most two more shots at a seat this year on one of California's most powerful regulatory panels.

Gov. Jerry Brown's office announced the appointment of two Democrats considered consumer-friendly: 58-year-old Oakland resident Mike Florio, senior attorney at The Utility Reform Network consumer advocacy group; and Catherine Sandoval, a 50-year-old San Jose-area resident and telecommunications expert who teaches at Santa Clara University School of Law.

Both individuals would need to be confirmed by the state Senate. The six-year positions pay $128,109 a year.

The commission regulates investor-owned utilities, telecommunications, water and transportation companies. It has a big role in setting rates paid by customers of PG&E and other utilities.

Florez's name has surfaced repeatedly as a leading candidate for appointment. Commission critics say he could help reverse the panel's reputation as being soft on utilities.

Florez could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

A spokesman for the governor's office declined to estimate when the next appointment would be made.

Normally the commission has five members, and so only one more vacancy must be filled. But observers have pointed out that Brown could choose to name a new commission president, displacing existing President MIchael Peevey, a two-term commissioner appointed most recently by former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. Under this scenario, Peevey would remain a commissioner until the end of his term in 2014.

Peevey said in a news release that he and the commission's staff welcome Brown's appointees.

"I have known Commissioner Florio for many years as a dedicated and passionate consumer advocate who has a reputation for working with all sides to come to the best outcome for ratepayers," he said.

"We are also very fortunate to have Commissioner Sandoval join the CPUC. She is a much respected legal scholar and telecommunications expert and will bring these skills to the CPUC. I look forward to collaborating with both new Commissioners as we work to strengthen our commitment to consumer protection and safety."

To see more of The Bakersfield Californian, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.bakersfield.com.

Copyright (c) 2011, The Bakersfield Californian

For more information about the content services offered by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services (MCT), visit www.mctinfoservices.com.

A service of YellowBrix, Inc.

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Governor Taps Two Attorneys for Public Utilities Commission | View Clip
01/26/2011
Metropolitan News-Enterprise - Online, The

Gov. Jerry Brown yesterday announced his selection of The governor also selected Robert Weisenmiller to serve as chair of the California Energy Commission and Carla Peterman as a member. Nomination to both of these commission requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $128,109. Florio, 58, has worked as the senior attorney for The Utility Reform Network, a consumer advocacy group, since 1978. He is also a member of the California Conference of Public Utility Counsel and served on the governing board of the California Independent System Operator from 1997 through 2005. The attorney holds degrees in political science and sociology from Kissee-Sandoval, 50, has worked as an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law since 2004. She previously served as undersecretary and senior policy advisor for housing with the Business, Transportation and Housing Agency from 2001 to 2004. Prior to this, Kissee-Sandoval was vice president and general counsel with Z-Spanish Media Corporation from 1999 to 2001 and was the director of the Office of Communications Business Opportunities for the Federal Communications Commission from 1994 to 1999. The attorney began her legal career as an associate with Munger, Tolles & Olson from 1991 to 1994 after a year clerking for Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Dorothy W. Nelson. Kissee-Sandoval attended Weisenmiller, 62, of He was a co-founder and executive vice president of MRW & Associates from 1986 to 2010 and was a co-founder and executive vice president of Independent Power Corporation from 1982 to 1986. From 1977 to 1982, Weisenmiller was an assistant to a commissioner, manager of the Special Projects Office and director of the Office of Policy Development and Program Evaluation with the California Energy Commission. Weisenmiller holds a doctorate degree in chemistry and a master's degree in energy and resources from the UC Berkeley and a bachelor's in chemistry from Peterman, 32, of She has conducted extensive research on solar photovoltaic markets and climate change, including co-authoring a series of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory publications on cost and deployment trends in the From 2004 to 2005 , Peterman was a business analyst with Isles and was an associate focused on energy financing in the investment banking division of Lehman Brothers from 2002 to 2004. Peterman holds a bachelor's degree in history from Weisenmiller is registered decline-to-state, and the other nominees are Democrats.

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Key consumer advocate gets state PUC post
01/26/2011
San Francisco Chronicle

Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday appointed a staunch consumer advocate and a law school professor to a powerful state commission that regulates California's utilities - a panel that has come under intense criticism in the wake of last year's fatal pipeline explosion in San Bruno.

Brown picked Mike Florio and Catherine Sandoval to fill two of three open seats on the California Public Utilities Commission, which oversees utilities that provide electricity, natural gas and water. The five-member panel also regulates railroads and telecommunications companies.

Until his appointment, Florio served as senior attorney at The Utility Reform Network, a consumer watchdog group that has been fiercely critical of the utilities, in particular Pacific Gas and Electric Co. TURN often urges the commission to reject PG&E's requests for rate hikes, usually without success.

Sandoval's expertise, meanwhile, lies in telecommunications law and regulation. A former Federal Communications Commission official, she is now an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law.

Florio's appointment carries great significance for critics of PG&E, and of the commission. The Sept. 9 explosion of a PG&E pipeline triggered charges that the commission had grown lax in its oversight of the utility, failing to ensure the safety of the company's vast natural gas transmission network. The commission, which lost one of its own staff members in the blast, has created an independent panel to look for problems within PG&E - and the commission itself - that could have led to the explosion.

Change applaudedState Assemblyman Jerry Hill, who represents San Bruno, applauded the appointments, saying he wanted a change in the commission's attitude.

"In the aftermath of the deadly gas pipeline explosion in San Bruno, it is my hope that they will provide the crucial oversight that is needed to end a culture of complacency on the commission," Hill said. The explosion killed eight people and destroyed 38 homes.

Hill had also urged Brown to pick a new president for the commission to replace Michael Peevey. But a spokesman for the governor on Tuesday said Peevey would stay in that position. Peevey's term expires in 2014.

"Mr. Peevey's president now, and we expect him to continue serving as president," said spokesman Evan Westrup.

TURN's executive director, Mark Toney, said he was thrilled to have Florio on the panel.

"I think he'll bring a fair balance to the commission, balancing what the utilities need to be successful and safe but doing that in a cost-effective manner," Toney said. He also praised Sandoval.

"She has a really deep background on telecommunications, and she has a strong belief in regulation and a commitment to consumer protection," Toney said.

More appointmentsFlorio and Sandoval could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

They were among four people Brown appointed Tuesday to key jobs in energy regulation. The governor also picked Carla Peterman and Robert Weisenmiller to serve on the California Energy Commission, which sets many long-term energy policies and approves the construction of new power plants.

Like Florio, Peterman has a link to TURN, serving on the consumer group's board of directors. A Ph.D. candidate at UC Berkeley, she has conducted extensive research on the solar power market.

Weisenmiller, who co-founded the MRW & Associates energy consulting firm in Oakland, already served one year on the Energy Commission. His first appointment, however, was never confirmed by the state Senate and expired earlier this month.

All of the appointments Brown made Tuesday, to the utilities and energy commissions, require Senate approval. Each appointee will make $128,109 per year. The utilities commissioners are appointed to six-year terms, while the term of each energy commissioner lasts five years.

Power veteranFlorio has worked with TURN since 1978, starting as a volunteer with the consumer group shortly after finishing law school. He also served on the board of governors for the California Independent System Operator, the nonprofit organization that manages California's power grid. Colleagues say the positions gave him a deep understanding of the state's electricity market, the companies that participate in it and the laws that shape it.

"He has an understanding of the markets, the regulations - he knows it all," said Stephanie McCorkle, director of communications for the California Independent System Operator. "He's so personable, and he can delve into really complex issues and talk about them with anyone."

The utilities commission, which holds its next meeting Thursday, has yet to vote on PG&E's latest request to raise revenue. The utility, based in San Francisco, initially wanted to increase the amount of money it collects from its customers by $4 billion in the next three years. But under an agreement negotiated with TURN last fall, the company would receive $1.73 billion instead.

"PG&E congratulates Mr. Florio and Ms. Sandoval to their appointments to the California Public Utilities Commission and looks forward to working with them in their new roles as members of this important regulatory body," said company spokesman Blair Jones.

Brown's commission picks Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday appointed two people to the California Public Utilities Commission and two to the California Energy Commission.

CPUC Mike Florio

Age: 58

Home: Oakland

Experience: Senior attorney for The Utility Reform Network. Member of the board of governors of the California Independent System Operator.

Catherine Sandoval

Age: 50

Home: Campbell

Experience: Associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law. Undersecretary of the California Business, Transportation and Housing Agency. Vice president of Z-Spanish Media Corp. Director of the Office of Communications Business Opportunities at the Federal Communications Commission.

CEC Carla Peterman

Home: Oakland

Experience: Member of the board of directors of The Utility Reform Network. Ph.D. candidate at UC Berkeley researching solar markets. Associate focusing on energy finance in the investment banking division of Lehman Bros.

Robert Weisenmiller

Home: Berkeley

Experience: Co-founder of MRW & Associates. Co-founder of Independent Power Corp. Director of the Office of Policy Development and Program Evaluation at the California Energy Commission.

Copyright © 2011 San Francisco Chronicle

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Brown Names Two to California PUC | View Clip
01/26/2011
Hispanic Business - Online

Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday appointed a ratepayer advocate and a law professor to the powerful California Public Utilities Commission, building what is likely to be a pro-consumer majority on the board.

Brown last week appointed commission member Nancy Ryan deputy executive director of the regulatory agency, reserving a third seat on the five-member commission for him to fill.

Mike Florio, 58, has been a lawyer for The Utility Reform Network, an advocacy group, since 1978. The group backed a failed ballot measure in 2005 that would have altered how electricity is regulated.

Catherine Sandoval, 50, is a telecommunications expert and an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law.

Like Brown, both Florio and Sandoval are Democrats.

The PUC regulates California's massive energy and telecommunications industries. Its critics had accused the PUC under Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger of pro-business leanings and lax oversight, including in the case of last year's pipeline explosion in San Bruno.

In a prepared statement, Assemblyman Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, criticized a "culture of complacency on the commission" and praised Brown's appointees as "thoughtful and forceful advocates for consumers."

Brown spokesman Evan Westrup said the appointments "will help California move toward a clean-energy economy, while also being sensitive to the needs of California businesses and consumers."

Florio could not be reached for comment. Sandoval said the PUC could enact policies beneficial to both business and consumers. "The PUC needs to look at the balance of these issues," she said.

A Southern California Edison spokesman said the company had no comment on the appointments. A Pacific Gas and Electric Co. spokesman congratulated Florio and Sandoval and said the company "looks forward to working with them in their new roles as members of this important regulatory body."

Brown also announced two appointments to the California Energy Commission. Robert Weisenmiller, 62, a decline-to-state voter, was appointed to the commission by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger last year. Carla Peterman, 32, a Democrat, is a Ph.D. candidate at University of California, Berkeley. She also serves on The Utility Reform Network's board.

The four appointments all require Senate confirmation. The pay for each position is $128,109 a year.

Source: Copyright (c) 2011, The Sacramento Bee, Calif.

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Brown names two to California PUC | View Clip
01/26/2011
Sacramento Bee - Online, The

Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday appointed a ratepayer advocate and a law professor to the powerful California Public Utilities Commission, building what is likely to be a pro-consumer majority on the board.

Brown last week appointed commission member Nancy Ryan deputy executive director of the regulatory agency, reserving a third seat on the five-member commission for him to fill.

Mike Florio, 58, has been a lawyer for The Utility Reform Network, an advocacy group, since 1978. The group backed a failed ballot measure in 2005 that would have altered how electricity is regulated.

Catherine Sandoval, 50, is a telecommunications expert and an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law.

Like Brown, both Florio and Sandoval are Democrats.

The PUC regulates California's massive energy and telecommunications industries. Its critics had accused the PUC under Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger of pro-business leanings and lax oversight, including in the case of last year's pipeline explosion in San Bruno.

In a prepared statement, Assemblyman Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, criticized a "culture of complacency on the commission" and praised Brown's appointees as "thoughtful and forceful advocates for consumers."

Brown spokesman Evan Westrup said the appointments "will help California move toward a clean-energy economy, while also being sensitive to the needs of California businesses and consumers."

Florio could not be reached for comment. Sandoval said the PUC could enact policies beneficial to both business and consumers. "The PUC needs to look at the balance of these issues," she said.

A Southern California Edison spokesman said the company had no comment on the appointments. A Pacific Gas and Electric Co. spokesman congratulated Florio and Sandoval and said the company "looks forward to working with them in their new roles as members of this important regulatory body."

Brown also announced two appointments to the California Energy Commission. Robert Weisenmiller, 62, a decline-to-state voter, was appointed to the commission by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger last year. Carla Peterman, 32, a Democrat, is a Ph.D. candidate at University of California, Berkeley. She also serves on The Utility Reform Network's board.

The four appointments all require Senate confirmation. The pay for each position is $128,109 a year.

Call David Siders, Bee Capitol Bureau, (916) 321-1215.

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Brown names two to California PUC
01/26/2011
Sacramento Bee, The

Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday appointed a ratepayer advocate and a law professor to the powerful California Public Utilities Commission , building what is likely to be a pro-consumer majority on the board.

Brown last week appointed commission member Nancy Ryan deputy executive director of the regulatory agency, reserving a third seat on the five-member commission for him to fill.

Mike Florio , 58, has been a lawyer for The Utility Reform Network, an advocacy group, since 1978. The group backed a failed ballot measure in 2005 that would have altered how electricity is regulated.

Catherine Sandoval , 50, is a telecommunications expert and an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law .

Like Brown, both Florio and Sandoval are Democrats.

The PUC regulates California's massive energy and telecommunications industries. Its critics had accused the PUC under Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger of pro-business leanings and lax oversight, including in the case of last year's pipeline explosion in San Bruno.

In a prepared statement, Assemblyman Jerry Hill , D-San Mateo, criticized a "culture of complacency on the commission" and praised Brown's appointees as "thoughtful and forceful advocates for consumers."

Brown spokesman Evan Westrup said the appointments "will help California move toward a clean-energy economy, while also being sensitive to the needs of California businesses and consumers."

Florio could not be reached for comment. Sandoval said the PUC could enact policies beneficial to both business and consumers. "The PUC needs to look at the balance of these issues," she said.

A Southern California Edison spokesman said the company had no comment on the appointments. A Pacific Gas and Electric Co. spokesman congratulated Florio and Sandoval and said the company "looks forward to working with them in their new roles as members of this important regulatory body."

Brown also announced two appointments to the California Energy Commission . Robert Weisenmiller, 62, a decline-to-state voter, was appointed to the commission by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger last year. Carla Peterman , 32, a Democrat, is a Ph.D. candidate at University of California, Berkeley . She also serves on The Utility Reform Network's board.

The four appointments all require Senate confirmation. The pay for each position is $128,109 a year.

Copyright © 2011 McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

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Brown appoints two Bay residents to CPUC | View Clip
01/26/2011
San Mateo Daily Journal

Gov. Jerry Brown has tapped two Bay Area consumer advocates to join the California Public Utilities Commission, an agency under fire recently for neglecting its duties in light of September's gas pipeline explosion in San Bruno.

Mike Florio, of Oakland, and Catherine Sandoval, of Campbell, were appointed by the governor yesterday.

Florio, 58, is senior attorney at San Francisco-based The Utility Reform Network, a nonprofit agency that has previously charged that the commission is too “cozy” with the companies it regulates, including Pacific Gas and Electric.

The commission has been criticized in recent months for its “culture of complacency” as stated by federal and state lawmakers following the explosion of a natural gas pipeline in San Bruno that killed eight and completely destroyed 37 homes Sept. 9.

Assemblyman Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, recently blasted the CPUC for not levying a single fine against PG&E, or any other utility, for pipeline safety violations in more than a decade.

His comments followed a rebuke by U.S. Rep. Jackie Speier, D-San Mateo, of the CPUC for failing to properly regulate utility companies in light of a National Transportation Safety Board report that indicated PG&E gave inspectors faulty documents related to the 30-inch pipe, line 132, that exploded in San Bruno.

Both lawmakers have introduced legislation calling for stronger pipeline safety regulations and both support Brown's appointments to the CPUC.

“Mike Florio knows the subject matter,” Speier said. “I feel greatly relieved that issues around pipeline safety will be addressed.”

The NTSB report revealed the San Bruno pipe, installed in the 1950s, had welded seams, a fact PG&E records did not indicate.

NTSB has called on PG&E to update all documents related to its aging infrastructure so that they are accurate.

“The pipe was unbelievably poorly constructed, even by the standards of the time,” said Speier, who spent two hours with NTSB investigators yesterday in Virginia. The pipe was apparently installed by subcontractors, Speier said.

Now, Speier wants to know what other sections of line 132 the subcontractors may have worked on more than 50 years ago to determine whether other sections of the pipe may be vulnerable.

Hill praised both Florio and Sandoval, an associate professor at Santa Clara University, for having stellar reputations as consumer advocates.

“In the aftermath of the deadly gas pipeline explosion in San Bruno, it is my hope that they will provide the crucial oversight that is needed to end a culture of complacency on the commission,” Hill wrote in a statement.

Florio and Sandoval, 50, will fill two of the three vacancies on the five-member board. They are both Democrats and their appointments require Senate confirmation.

Commissioners Dian Grueneich and John Bohn left the CPUC when their terms expired in December. Commissioner Nancy Ryan was appointed deputy director of the CPUC by Brown last week, moving her into a staff position and off the board.

Recently, Hill said the CPUC had become less of a “watchdog” and more of a “lapdog” to those it regulates.

Florio spent 32 years at TURN, an agency bent on protecting consumers from unfair rate hikes, for instance.

“Consumers in California now have a CPUC commissioner they can depend on,” TURN Executive Director Mark Toney wrote in a statement. “Mike Florio is eminently qualified to serve on an agency whose mission is to ‘protect the public interest by protecting consumers.' His expertise and dedication are likely to help the commission rehabilitate its tarred image.”

Florio coordinated development of TURN's policies on energy-related issues and is regarded as a leading authority on the natural gas industry.

Sandoval is a Rhodes Scholar who previously served as undersecretary and senior policy adviser for housing with the Business, Transportation and Housing Agency.

“We are confident these appointments will be sensitive to the needs of businesses and consumers,” Brown spokesman Evan Westrup said yesterday. “Their jobs involve keeping Californians safe and aware of the challenges that the utilities face.”

The CPUC employs about 1,000 people and regulates privately owned utility companies.

Bill Silverfarb can be reached by e-mail: silverfarb@smdailyjournal.com or by phone: (650) 344-5200 ext. 106.

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Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's Jan. 7 death was 1999 assault in San Jose | View Clip
01/26/2011
InsideBayArea.com

Lowell Noble

In a murderous month in San Jose, Lowell Noble is perhaps the most surprising victim of all: The 82-year-old man died Jan. 7, authorities say, because of a savage beating that occurred almost 12 years ago.

His attacker has been locked up for years, but on Wednesday, after an unusual ruling by the coroner, San Jose police re-opened the case as a homicide.

Noble was suffering from heart problems and diabetes when he died Jan. 7. While he needed a walker to get around, he enjoyed bridge and the Reader's Digest in his final years.

But despite his advanced age and health problems, the most significant factor in Noble's death was trauma to his head -- the traumatic brain injury he suffered on May 15, 1999 in a San Jose house, according to the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner.

More specifically, Noble suffered aspiration pneumonia because of dysphagia -- a swallowing problem. And that swallowing problem, the death certificate reads, was a direct result of his brain injury.

Prosecutors say it's too soon to tell whether they'll re-charge the attacker with murder or manslaughter. That man, Walter Jones, 49, is now serving a 16-year attempted murder sentence for savagely beating Noble and Jones' mother, Linda, whom Noble was dating at the time.

Dr. Michelle Jorden, who signed Noble's death certificate, declined to speak about the case, saying it is against department policy to comment on open homicide investigations.

But

Santa Clara County Sheriff Capt. Kevin Jensen, who oversees the coroner's office, said: "In general, the concept of delayed fatals is this: If the event caused an injury, and that injury was the largest contributing factor in the death, then it can be ruled a homicide."

Family members say that although Noble survived the 1999 attack, he never fully recovered.

"Dad was never the same," his oldest daughter Mellissa Noble Asmussen said after his funeral service this week.

He suffered short-term memory loss and was never able to live after the attack on his own again.

Deputy District Attorney Brian Welch said he needs to review the entire case again before deciding whether to re-charge Jones. Jones was convicted of two counts of attempted murder and elder abuse. The other person Jones harmed that night was his mother, who lived in Campbell. Attempts to contact Linda Jones were unsuccessful..

Welch did say, it would be an uphill battle to obtain a murder conviction. .

California law presumes that if a victim dies more than three years after an assault, then it is not a result of the crime, but allows arguments to the contrary to be made in court.

"Delayed fatals" happen regularly enough, but the gap between incident and death is usually much closer. In addition to Noble, San Jose had another one this year. Salvador Pena, a 56-year-old jewlery-music store owner in Alum Rock, was stabbed on Dec. 15, and died Jan. 8 as a result of those wounds.

San Jose police list Pena and Noble as 2011 homicide victims, bumping the number to nine -- a high figure in a city that had 20 homicides all of last year.

Delayed fatals that are years-long, however, are rarer. In one highly unusual case in 2009, a coroner in Virginia ruled a Navy veteran died as the result of a 1976 shooting that left him a quadriplegic.

Prosecutors couldn't file charges, because Virginia law prevents murder prosecutions if the victim dies more than one year and one day after the fatal wound was inflicted.

Santa Clara University Law Professor Gerald Uelmen, a member of the O.J. Simpson defense team, said if Jones is charged with murder, "the case would likely come down to be a battle of the experts."

"Clearly, the longer the time lapses, the more difficult it will be," Uelman said.

But the gory details and legal challenges of Noble's delayed death were not what his two remaining daughters and others chose to remember at his funeral service Tuesday afternoon.

The service was celebrated by a small group, including an old college pal who also attended the University of Oregon, where Noble received bachelor's and master's degrees in chemistry. Noble had 17 patents under his name stemming from the 1950s. Among his inventions were 3D viewing glasses and electron tube sockets, according to his family He ran his own company, QD Technology in Los Gatos until he injured during the attack, his family said.

"Lowell was brilliant," Noble Pearson said in her eulogy.

But Noble's oldest daughter, Mellissa Noble Asmussen, 55, of San Jose, said her dad never bounced back after the brutal beating, where she said Jones punched and kicked her father in the head with his boots: "The doctors said Dad would have been a vegetable if he hadn't been so intelligent." Still to this day, she doesn't know what set off Jones.

After the attack, Noble was forced to close his business and move in with his middle daughter, Melenie Noble Pearson, and her husband.

Noble's wife, Robyn, died in 1984 of leukemia, and his youngest daughter, Melynda, died in 1996 when she was 32 years old.

The Noble family was surprised to learn that the coroner ruled their dad's death a homicide. And now, Noble Asmussen said she is "torn" about wanting her dad's attacker to be charged with another crime.

"I guess I feel like, yeah, Dad died that day, and now, it's just like we lost his shell," Noble Asmussen said. "But on the other hand, it's been so long. Maybe we just need to let things go."

Contact Lisa Fernandez at 408-920-5002.

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Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's Jan. 7 death was 1999 assault in San Jose | View Clip
01/26/2011
San Jose Mercury News - Online

Lowell Noble, who was attacked 11 years ago, but died on Jan. 7, 2011.

In a murderous month in San Jose, Lowell Noble is perhaps the most surprising victim of all: The 82-year-old man died Jan. 7, authorities say, because of a savage beating that occurred almost 12 years ago.

His attacker has been locked up for years, but on Wednesday, after an unusual ruling by the coroner, San Jose police re-opened the case as a homicide.

Noble was suffering from heart problems and diabetes when he died Jan. 7. While he needed a walker to get around, he enjoyed bridge and the Reader's Digest in his final years.

But despite his advanced age and health problems, the most significant factor in Noble's death was trauma to his head -- the traumatic brain injury he suffered on May 15, 1999 in a San Jose house, according to the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner.

More specifically, Noble suffered aspiration pneumonia because of dysphagia -- a swallowing problem. And that swallowing problem, the death certificate reads, was a direct result of his brain injury.

Prosecutors say it's too soon to tell whether they'll re-charge the attacker with murder or manslaughter. That man, Walter Jones, 49, is now serving a 16-year attempted murder sentence for savagely beating Noble and Jones' mother, Linda, whom Noble was dating at the time.

Dr. Michelle Jorden, who signed Noble's death certificate, declined to speak about the case, saying it is against department policy to comment on open homicide investigations.

But

Santa Clara County Sheriff Capt. Kevin Jensen, who oversees the coroner's office, said: "In general, the concept of delayed fatals is this: If the event caused an injury, and that injury was the largest contributing factor in the death, then it can be ruled a homicide."

Family members say that although Noble survived the 1999 attack, he never fully recovered.

"Dad was never the same," his oldest daughter Mellissa Noble Asmussen said after his funeral service this week.

He suffered short-term memory loss and was never able to live after the attack on his own again.

Deputy District Attorney Brian Welch said he needs to review the entire case again before deciding whether to re-charge Jones. Jones was convicted of two counts of attempted murder and elder abuse. The other person Jones harmed that night was his mother, who lived in Campbell. Attempts to contact Linda Jones were unsuccessful..

Welch did say, it would be an uphill battle to obtain a murder conviction. .

California law presumes that if a victim dies more than three years after an assault, then it is not a result of the crime, but allows arguments to the contrary to be made in court.

"Delayed fatals" happen regularly enough, but the gap between incident and death is usually much closer. In addition to Noble, San Jose had another one this year. Salvador Pena, a 56-year-old jewlery-music store owner in Alum Rock, was stabbed on Dec. 15, and died Jan. 8 as a result of those wounds.

San Jose police list Pena and Noble as 2011 homicide victims, bumping the number to nine -- a high figure in a city that had 20 homicides all of last year.

Delayed fatals that are years-long, however, are rarer. In one highly unusual case in 2009, a coroner in Virginia ruled a Navy veteran died as the result of a 1976 shooting that left him a quadriplegic.

Prosecutors couldn't file charges, because Virginia law prevents murder prosecutions if the victim dies more than one year and one day after the fatal wound was inflicted.

Santa Clara University Law Professor Gerald Uelmen, a member of the O.J. Simpson defense team, said if Jones is charged with murder, "the case would likely come down to be a battle of the experts."

"Clearly, the longer the time lapses, the more difficult it will be," Uelman said.

But the gory details and legal challenges of Noble's delayed death were not what his two remaining daughters and others chose to remember at his funeral service Tuesday afternoon.

The service was celebrated by a small group, including an old college pal who also attended the University of Oregon, where Noble received bachelor's and master's degrees in chemistry. Noble had 17 patents under his name stemming from the 1950s. Among his inventions were 3D viewing glasses and electron tube sockets, according to his family He ran his own company, QD Technology in Los Gatos until he injured during the attack, his family said.

"Lowell was brilliant," Noble Pearson said in her eulogy.

But Noble's oldest daughter, Mellissa Noble Asmussen, 55, of San Jose, said her dad never bounced back after the brutal beating, where she said Jones punched and kicked her father in the head with his boots: "The doctors said Dad would have been a vegetable if he hadn't been so intelligent." Still to this day, she doesn't know what set off Jones.

After the attack, Noble was forced to close his business and move in with his middle daughter, Melenie Noble Pearson, and her husband.

Noble's wife, Robyn, died in 1984 of leukemia, and his youngest daughter, Melynda, died in 1996 when she was 32 years old.

The Noble family was surprised to learn that the coroner ruled their dad's death a homicide. And now, Noble Asmussen said she is "torn" about wanting her dad's attacker to be charged with another crime.

"I guess I feel like, yeah, Dad died that day, and now, it's just like we lost his shell," Noble Asmussen said. "But on the other hand, it's been so long. Maybe we just need to let things go."

Contact Lisa Fernandez at 408-920-5002.

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Brown names consumer advocate Mike Florio to PUC | View Clip
01/26/2011
San Francisco Chronicle - Online

Gov. Jerry Brown, shown earlier this month, said Tuesday that PUC President Michael Peevey would stay in that position.

Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday appointed a staunch consumer advocate and a law school professor to a powerful state commission that regulates California's utilities - a panel that has come under intense criticism in the wake of last year's fatal pipeline explosion in San Bruno.

Brown picked Mike Florio and Catherine Sandoval to fill two of three open seats on the , which oversees utilities that provide electricity, natural gas and water. The five-member panel also regulates railroads and telecommunications companies.

Until his appointment, Florio served as senior attorney at The Utility Reform Network, a consumer watchdog group that has been fiercely critical of the utilities, in particular Pacific Gas and Electric Co. TURN often urges the commission to reject PG&E's requests for rate hikes, usually without success.

Sandoval's expertise, meanwhile, lies in telecommunications law and regulation. A former official, she is now an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law.

Florio's appointment carries great significance for critics of PG&E, and of the commission. The Sept. 9 explosion of a PG&E pipeline triggered charges that the commission had grown lax in its oversight of the utility, failing to ensure the safety of the company's vast natural gas transmission network. The commission, which lost one of its own staff members in the blast, has created an independent panel to look for problems within PG&E - and the commission itself - that could have led to the explosion.

State Assemblyman Jerry Hill, who represents San Bruno, applauded the appointments, saying he wanted a change in the commission's attitude.

"In the aftermath of the deadly gas pipeline explosion in San Bruno, it is my hope that they will provide the crucial oversight that is needed to end a culture of complacency on the commission," Hill said. The explosion killed eight people and destroyed 38 homes.

Hill had also urged Brown to pick a new president for the commission to replace Michael Peevey. But a spokesman for the governor on Tuesday said Peevey would stay in that position. Peevey's term expires in 2014.

"Mr. Peevey's president now, and we expect him to continue serving as president," said spokesman Evan Westrup.

TURN's executive director, Mark Toney, said he was thrilled to have Florio on the panel.

"I think he'll bring a fair balance to the commission, balancing what the utilities need to be successful and safe but doing that in a cost-effective manner," Toney said. He also praised Sandoval.

"She has a really deep background on telecommunications, and she has a strong belief in regulation and a commitment to consumer protection," Toney said.

Florio and Sandoval could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

They were among four people Brown appointed Tuesday to key jobs in energy regulation. The governor also picked Carla Peterman and Robert Weisenmiller to serve on the , which sets many long-term energy policies and approves the construction of new power plants.

Like Florio, Peterman has a link to TURN, serving on the consumer group's board of directors. A Ph.D. candidate at UC Berkeley, she has conducted extensive research on the solar power market.

Weisenmiller, who co-founded the MRW & Associates energy consulting firm in Oakland, already served one year on the Energy Commission. His first appointment, however, was never confirmed by the state Senate and expired earlier this month.

All of the appointments Brown made Tuesday, to the utilities and energy commissions, require Senate approval. Each appointee will make $128,109 per year. The utilities commissioners are appointed to six-year terms, while the term of each energy commissioner lasts five years.

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Brown names consumer advocate Mike Florio to PUC | View Clip
01/26/2011
San Francisco Chronicle - Online

Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday appointed a staunch consumer advocate and a law school professor to a powerful state commission that regulates California's utilities - a panel that has come under intense criticism in the wake of last year's fatal pipeline explosion in San Bruno.

Brown picked Mike Florio and Catherine Sandoval to fill two of three open seats on the California Public Utilities Commission, which oversees utilities that provide electricity, natural gas and water. The five-member panel also regulates railroads and telecommunications companies.

Until his appointment, Florio served as senior attorney at The Utility Reform Network, a consumer watchdog group that has been fiercely critical of the utilities, in particular Pacific Gas and Electric Co. TURN often urges the commission to reject PG&E's requests for rate hikes, usually without success.

Sandoval's expertise, meanwhile, lies in telecommunications law and regulation. A former Federal Communications Commission official, she is now an associate professor at Santa Clara University School of Law.

Florio's appointment carries great significance for critics of PG&E, and of the commission. The Sept. 9 explosion of a PG&E pipeline triggered charges that the commission had grown lax in its oversight of the utility, failing to ensure the safety of the company's vast natural gas transmission network. The commission, which lost one of its own staff members in the blast, has created an independent panel to look for problems within PG&E - and the commission itself - that could have led to the explosion.

Change applauded

State Assemblyman Jerry Hill, who represents San Bruno, applauded the appointments, saying he wanted a change in the commission's attitude.

"In the aftermath of the deadly gas pipeline explosion in San Bruno, it is my hope that they will provide the crucial oversight that is needed to end a culture of complacency on the commission," Hill said. The explosion killed eight people and destroyed 38 homes.

Hill had also urged Brown to pick a new president for the commission to replace Michael Peevey. But a spokesman for the governor on Tuesday said Peevey would stay in that position. Peevey's term expires in 2014.

"Mr. Peevey's president now, and we expect him to continue serving as president," said spokesman Evan Westrup.

TURN's executive director, Mark Toney, said he was thrilled to have Florio on the panel.

"I think he'll bring a fair balance to the commission, balancing what the utilities need to be successful and safe but doing that in a cost-effective manner," Toney said. He also praised Sandoval.

"She has a really deep background on telecommunications, and she has a strong belief in regulation and a commitment to consumer protection," Toney said.

More appointments

Florio and Sandoval could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

They were among four people Brown appointed Tuesday to key jobs in energy regulation. The governor also picked Carla Peterman and Robert Weisenmiller to serve on the California Energy Commission, which sets many long-term energy policies and approves the construction of new power plants.

Like Florio, Peterman has a link to TURN, serving on the consumer group's board of directors. A Ph.D. candidate at UC Berkeley, she has conducted extensive research on the solar power market.

Weisenmiller, who co-founded the MRW & Associates energy consulting firm in Oakland, already served one year on the Energy Commission. His first appointment, however, was never confirmed by the state Senate and expired earlier this month.

All of the appointments Brown made Tuesday, to the utilities and energy commissions, require Senate approval. Each appointee will make $128,109 per year. The utilities commissioners are appointed to six-year terms, while the term of each energy commissioner lasts five years.

Power veteran

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Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's Jan. 7 death was 1999 assault in San Jose
01/26/2011
Alameda Times-Star

In a murderous month in San Jose, Lowell Noble is perhaps the most surprising victim of all: The 82-year-old man died Jan. 7, authorities say, because of a savage beating that occurred almost 12 years ago.

His attacker has been locked up for years, but on Wednesday, after an unusual ruling by the coroner, San Jose police re-opened the case as a homicide.

Noble was suffering from heart problems and diabetes when he died Jan. 7. While he needed a walker to get around, he enjoyed bridge and the Reader's Digest in his final years.

But despite his advanced age and health problems, the most significant factor in Noble's death was trauma to his head -- the traumatic brain injury he suffered on May 15, 1999 in a San Jose house, according to the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner.

More specifically, Noble suffered aspiration pneumonia because of dysphagia -- a swallowing problem. And that swallowing problem, the death certificate reads, was a direct result of his brain injury.

Prosecutors say it's too soon to tell whether they'll re-charge the attacker with murder or manslaughter. That man, Walter Jones, 49, is now serving a 16-year attempted murder sentence for savagely beating Noble and Jones' mother, Linda, whom Noble was dating at the time.

Dr. Michelle Jorden, who signed Noble's death certificate, declined to speak about the case, saying it is against department policy to comment on open homicide investigations.

But Santa Clara County Sheriff Capt. Kevin Jensen, who oversees the coroner's office, said: "In general, the concept of delayed fatals is this: If the event caused an injury, and that injury was the largest contributing factor in the death, then it can be ruled a homicide."

Family members say that although Noble survived the 1999 attack, he never fully recovered.

"Dad was never the same," his oldest daughter Mellissa Noble Asmussen said after his funeral service this week.

He suffered short-term memory loss and was never able to live after the attack on his own again.

Deputy District Attorney Brian Welch said he needs to review the entire case again before deciding whether to re-charge Jones. Jones was convicted of two counts of attempted murder and elder abuse. The other person Jones harmed that night was his mother, who lived in Campbell. Attempts to contact Linda Jones were unsuccessful..

Welch did say, it would be an uphill battle to obtain a murder conviction. .

California law presumes that if a victim dies more than three years after an assault, then it is not a result of the crime, but allows arguments to the contrary to be made in court.

"Delayed fatals" happen regularly enough, but the gap between incident and death is usually much closer. In addition to Noble, San Jose had another one this year. Salvador Pena, a 56-year-old jewlery-music store owner in Alum Rock, was stabbed on Dec. 15, and died Jan. 8 as a result of those wounds.

San Jose police list Pena and Noble as 2011 homicide victims, bumping the number to nine -- a high figure in a city that had 20 homicides all of last year.

Delayed fatals that are years-long, however, are rarer. In one highly unusual case in 2009, a coroner in Virginia ruled a Navy veteran died as the result of a 1976 shooting that left him a quadriplegic.

Prosecutors couldn't file charges, because Virginia law prevents murder prosecutions if the victim dies more than one year and one day after the fatal wound was inflicted.

Santa Clara University Law Professor Gerald Uelmen, a member of the O.J. Simpson defense team, said if Jones is charged with murder, "the case would likely come down to be a battle of the experts."

"Clearly, the longer the time lapses, the more difficult it will be," Uelman said.

But the gory details and legal challenges of Noble's delayed death were not what his two remaining daughters and others chose to remember at his funeral service Tuesday afternoon.

The service was celebrated by a small group, including an old college pal who also attended the University of Oregon, where Noble received bachelor's and master's degrees in chemistry. Noble had 17 patents under his name stemming from the 1950s. Among his inventions were 3D viewing glasses and electron tube sockets, according to his family He ran his own company, QD Technology in Los Gatos until he injured during the attack, his family said.

"Lowell was brilliant," Noble Pearson said in her eulogy.

But Noble's oldest daughter, Mellissa Noble Asmussen, 55, of San Jose, said her dad never bounced back after the brutal beating, where she said Jones punched and kicked her father in the head with his boots: "The doctors said Dad would have been a vegetable if he hadn't been so intelligent." Still to this day, she doesn't know what set off Jones.

After the attack, Noble was forced to close his business and move in with his middle daughter, Melenie Noble Pearson, and her husband.

Noble's wife, Robyn, died in 1984 of leukemia, and his youngest daughter, Melynda, died in 1996 when she was 32 years old.

The Noble family was surprised to learn that the coroner ruled their dad's death a homicide. And now, Noble Asmussen said she is "torn" about wanting her dad's attacker to be charged with another crime.

"I guess I feel like, yeah, Dad died that day, and now, it's just like we lost his shell," Noble Asmussen said. "But on the other hand, it's been so long. Maybe we just need to let things go."

Contact Lisa Fernandez at 408-920-5002.

Copyright © 2011 Alameda Times-Star. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's Jan. 7 death was 1999 assault in San Jose
01/26/2011
Argus, The

In a murderous month in San Jose, Lowell Noble is perhaps the most surprising victim of all: The 82-year-old man died Jan. 7, authorities say, because of a savage beating that occurred almost 12 years ago.

His attacker has been locked up for years, but on Wednesday, after an unusual ruling by the coroner, San Jose police re-opened the case as a homicide.

Noble was suffering from heart problems and diabetes when he died Jan. 7. While he needed a walker to get around, he enjoyed bridge and the Reader's Digest in his final years.

But despite his advanced age and health problems, the most significant factor in Noble's death was trauma to his head -- the traumatic brain injury he suffered on May 15, 1999 in a San Jose house, according to the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner.

More specifically, Noble suffered aspiration pneumonia because of dysphagia -- a swallowing problem. And that swallowing problem, the death certificate reads, was a direct result of his brain injury.

Prosecutors say it's too soon to tell whether they'll re-charge the attacker with murder or manslaughter. That man, Walter Jones, 49, is now serving a 16-year attempted murder sentence for savagely beating Noble and Jones' mother, Linda, whom Noble was dating at the time.

Dr. Michelle Jorden, who signed Noble's death certificate, declined to speak about the case, saying it is against department policy to comment on open homicide investigations.

But Santa Clara County Sheriff Capt. Kevin Jensen, who oversees the coroner's office, said: "In general, the concept of delayed fatals is this: If the event caused an injury, and that injury was the largest contributing factor in the death, then it can be ruled a homicide."

Family members say that although Noble survived the 1999 attack, he never fully recovered.

"Dad was never the same," his oldest daughter Mellissa Noble Asmussen said after his funeral service this week.

He suffered short-term memory loss and was never able to live after the attack on his own again.

Deputy District Attorney Brian Welch said he needs to review the entire case again before deciding whether to re-charge Jones. Jones was convicted of two counts of attempted murder and elder abuse. The other person Jones harmed that night was his mother, who lived in Campbell. Attempts to contact Linda Jones were unsuccessful..

Welch did say, it would be an uphill battle to obtain a murder conviction. .

California law presumes that if a victim dies more than three years after an assault, then it is not a result of the crime, but allows arguments to the contrary to be made in court.

"Delayed fatals" happen regularly enough, but the gap between incident and death is usually much closer. In addition to Noble, San Jose had another one this year. Salvador Pena, a 56-year-old jewlery-music store owner in Alum Rock, was stabbed on Dec. 15, and died Jan. 8 as a result of those wounds.

San Jose police list Pena and Noble as 2011 homicide victims, bumping the number to nine -- a high figure in a city that had 20 homicides all of last year.

Delayed fatals that are years-long, however, are rarer. In one highly unusual case in 2009, a coroner in Virginia ruled a Navy veteran died as the result of a 1976 shooting that left him a quadriplegic.

Prosecutors couldn't file charges, because Virginia law prevents murder prosecutions if the victim dies more than one year and one day after the fatal wound was inflicted.

Santa Clara University Law Professor Gerald Uelmen, a member of the O.J. Simpson defense team, said if Jones is charged with murder, "the case would likely come down to be a battle of the experts."

"Clearly, the longer the time lapses, the more difficult it will be," Uelman said.

But the gory details and legal challenges of Noble's delayed death were not what his two remaining daughters and others chose to remember at his funeral service Tuesday afternoon.

The service was celebrated by a small group, including an old college pal who also attended the University of Oregon, where Noble received bachelor's and master's degrees in chemistry. Noble had 17 patents under his name stemming from the 1950s. Among his inventions were 3D viewing glasses and electron tube sockets, according to his family He ran his own company, QD Technology in Los Gatos until he injured during the attack, his family said.

"Lowell was brilliant," Noble Pearson said in her eulogy.

But Noble's oldest daughter, Mellissa Noble Asmussen, 55, of San Jose, said her dad never bounced back after the brutal beating, where she said Jones punched and kicked her father in the head with his boots: "The doctors said Dad would have been a vegetable if he hadn't been so intelligent." Still to this day, she doesn't know what set off Jones.

After the attack, Noble was forced to close his business and move in with his middle daughter, Melenie Noble Pearson, and her husband.

Noble's wife, Robyn, died in 1984 of leukemia, and his youngest daughter, Melynda, died in 1996 when she was 32 years old.

The Noble family was surprised to learn that the coroner ruled their dad's death a homicide. And now, Noble Asmussen said she is "torn" about wanting her dad's attacker to be charged with another crime.

"I guess I feel like, yeah, Dad died that day, and now, it's just like we lost his shell," Noble Asmussen said. "But on the other hand, it's been so long. Maybe we just need to let things go."

Contact Lisa Fernandez at 408-920-5002.

Copyright © 2011 The Argus. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's Jan. 7 death was 1999 assault in San Jose
01/26/2011
Oakland Tribune

In a murderous month in San Jose, Lowell Noble is perhaps the most surprising victim of all: The 82-year-old man died Jan. 7, authorities say, because of a savage beating that occurred almost 12 years ago.

His attacker has been locked up for years, but on Wednesday, after an unusual ruling by the coroner, San Jose police re-opened the case as a homicide.

Noble was suffering from heart problems and diabetes when he died Jan. 7. While he needed a walker to get around, he enjoyed bridge and the Reader's Digest in his final years.

But despite his advanced age and health problems, the most significant factor in Noble's death was trauma to his head -- the traumatic brain injury he suffered on May 15, 1999 in a San Jose house, according to the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner.

More specifically, Noble suffered aspiration pneumonia because of dysphagia -- a swallowing problem. And that swallowing problem, the death certificate reads, was a direct result of his brain injury.

Prosecutors say it's too soon to tell whether they'll re-charge the attacker with murder or manslaughter. That man, Walter Jones, 49, is now serving a 16-year attempted murder sentence for savagely beating Noble and Jones' mother, Linda, whom Noble was dating at the time.

Dr. Michelle Jorden, who signed Noble's death certificate, declined to speak about the case, saying it is against department policy to comment on open homicide investigations.

But Santa Clara County Sheriff Capt. Kevin Jensen, who oversees the coroner's office, said: "In general, the concept of delayed fatals is this: If the event caused an injury, and that injury was the largest contributing factor in the death, then it can be ruled a homicide."

Family members say that although Noble survived the 1999 attack, he never fully recovered.

"Dad was never the same," his oldest daughter Mellissa Noble Asmussen said after his funeral service this week.

He suffered short-term memory loss and was never able to live after the attack on his own again.

Deputy District Attorney Brian Welch said he needs to review the entire case again before deciding whether to re-charge Jones. Jones was convicted of two counts of attempted murder and elder abuse. The other person Jones harmed that night was his mother, who lived in Campbell. Attempts to contact Linda Jones were unsuccessful..

Welch did say, it would be an uphill battle to obtain a murder conviction. .

California law presumes that if a victim dies more than three years after an assault, then it is not a result of the crime, but allows arguments to the contrary to be made in court.

"Delayed fatals" happen regularly enough, but the gap between incident and death is usually much closer. In addition to Noble, San Jose had another one this year. Salvador Pena, a 56-year-old jewlery-music store owner in Alum Rock, was stabbed on Dec. 15, and died Jan. 8 as a result of those wounds.

San Jose police list Pena and Noble as 2011 homicide victims, bumping the number to nine -- a high figure in a city that had 20 homicides all of last year.

Delayed fatals that are years-long, however, are rarer. In one highly unusual case in 2009, a coroner in Virginia ruled a Navy veteran died as the result of a 1976 shooting that left him a quadriplegic.

Prosecutors couldn't file charges, because Virginia law prevents murder prosecutions if the victim dies more than one year and one day after the fatal wound was inflicted.

Santa Clara University Law Professor Gerald Uelmen, a member of the O.J. Simpson defense team, said if Jones is charged with murder, "the case would likely come down to be a battle of the experts."

"Clearly, the longer the time lapses, the more difficult it will be," Uelman said.

But the gory details and legal challenges of Noble's delayed death were not what his two remaining daughters and others chose to remember at his funeral service Tuesday afternoon.

The service was celebrated by a small group, including an old college pal who also attended the University of Oregon, where Noble received bachelor's and master's degrees in chemistry. Noble had 17 patents under his name stemming from the 1950s. Among his inventions were 3D viewing glasses and electron tube sockets, according to his family He ran his own company, QD Technology in Los Gatos until he injured during the attack, his family said.

"Lowell was brilliant," Noble Pearson said in her eulogy.

But Noble's oldest daughter, Mellissa Noble Asmussen, 55, of San Jose, said her dad never bounced back after the brutal beating, where she said Jones punched and kicked her father in the head with his boots: "The doctors said Dad would have been a vegetable if he hadn't been so intelligent." Still to this day, she doesn't know what set off Jones.

After the attack, Noble was forced to close his business and move in with his middle daughter, Melenie Noble Pearson, and her husband.

Noble's wife, Robyn, died in 1984 of leukemia, and his youngest daughter, Melynda, died in 1996 when she was 32 years old.

The Noble family was surprised to learn that the coroner ruled their dad's death a homicide. And now, Noble Asmussen said she is "torn" about wanting her dad's attacker to be charged with another crime.

"I guess I feel like, yeah, Dad died that day, and now, it's just like we lost his shell," Noble Asmussen said. "But on the other hand, it's been so long. Maybe we just need to let things go."

Contact Lisa Fernandez at 408-920-5002.

Copyright © 2011 The Oakland Tribune. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's Jan. 7 death was 1999 assault in San Jose
01/26/2011
Daily Review, The

In a murderous month in San Jose, Lowell Noble is perhaps the most surprising victim of all: The 82-year-old man died Jan. 7, authorities say, because of a savage beating that occurred almost 12 years ago.

His attacker has been locked up for years, but on Wednesday, after an unusual ruling by the coroner, San Jose police re-opened the case as a homicide.

Noble was suffering from heart problems and diabetes when he died Jan. 7. While he needed a walker to get around, he enjoyed bridge and the Reader's Digest in his final years.

But despite his advanced age and health problems, the most significant factor in Noble's death was trauma to his head -- the traumatic brain injury he suffered on May 15, 1999 in a San Jose house, according to the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner.

More specifically, Noble suffered aspiration pneumonia because of dysphagia -- a swallowing problem. And that swallowing problem, the death certificate reads, was a direct result of his brain injury.

Prosecutors say it's too soon to tell whether they'll re-charge the attacker with murder or manslaughter. That man, Walter Jones, 49, is now serving a 16-year attempted murder sentence for savagely beating Noble and Jones' mother, Linda, whom Noble was dating at the time.

Dr. Michelle Jorden, who signed Noble's death certificate, declined to speak about the case, saying it is against department policy to comment on open homicide investigations.

But Santa Clara County Sheriff Capt. Kevin Jensen, who oversees the coroner's office, said: "In general, the concept of delayed fatals is this: If the event caused an injury, and that injury was the largest contributing factor in the death, then it can be ruled a homicide."

Family members say that although Noble survived the 1999 attack, he never fully recovered.

"Dad was never the same," his oldest daughter Mellissa Noble Asmussen said after his funeral service this week.

He suffered short-term memory loss and was never able to live after the attack on his own again.

Deputy District Attorney Brian Welch said he needs to review the entire case again before deciding whether to re-charge Jones. Jones was convicted of two counts of attempted murder and elder abuse. The other person Jones harmed that night was his mother, who lived in Campbell. Attempts to contact Linda Jones were unsuccessful..

Welch did say, it would be an uphill battle to obtain a murder conviction. .

California law presumes that if a victim dies more than three years after an assault, then it is not a result of the crime, but allows arguments to the contrary to be made in court.

"Delayed fatals" happen regularly enough, but the gap between incident and death is usually much closer. In addition to Noble, San Jose had another one this year. Salvador Pena, a 56-year-old jewlery-music store owner in Alum Rock, was stabbed on Dec. 15, and died Jan. 8 as a result of those wounds.

San Jose police list Pena and Noble as 2011 homicide victims, bumping the number to nine -- a high figure in a city that had 20 homicides all of last year.

Delayed fatals that are years-long, however, are rarer. In one highly unusual case in 2009, a coroner in Virginia ruled a Navy veteran died as the result of a 1976 shooting that left him a quadriplegic.

Prosecutors couldn't file charges, because Virginia law prevents murder prosecutions if the victim dies more than one year and one day after the fatal wound was inflicted.

Santa Clara University Law Professor Gerald Uelmen, a member of the O.J. Simpson defense team, said if Jones is charged with murder, "the case would likely come down to be a battle of the experts."

"Clearly, the longer the time lapses, the more difficult it will be," Uelman said.

But the gory details and legal challenges of Noble's delayed death were not what his two remaining daughters and others chose to remember at his funeral service Tuesday afternoon.

The service was celebrated by a small group, including an old college pal who also attended the University of Oregon, where Noble received bachelor's and master's degrees in chemistry. Noble had 17 patents under his name stemming from the 1950s. Among his inventions were 3D viewing glasses and electron tube sockets, according to his family He ran his own company, QD Technology in Los Gatos until he injured during the attack, his family said.

"Lowell was brilliant," Noble Pearson said in her eulogy.

But Noble's oldest daughter, Mellissa Noble Asmussen, 55, of San Jose, said her dad never bounced back after the brutal beating, where she said Jones punched and kicked her father in the head with his boots: "The doctors said Dad would have been a vegetable if he hadn't been so intelligent." Still to this day, she doesn't know what set off Jones.

After the attack, Noble was forced to close his business and move in with his middle daughter, Melenie Noble Pearson, and her husband.

Noble's wife, Robyn, died in 1984 of leukemia, and his youngest daughter, Melynda, died in 1996 when she was 32 years old.

The Noble family was surprised to learn that the coroner ruled their dad's death a homicide. And now, Noble Asmussen said she is "torn" about wanting her dad's attacker to be charged with another crime.

"I guess I feel like, yeah, Dad died that day, and now, it's just like we lost his shell," Noble Asmussen said. "But on the other hand, it's been so long. Maybe we just need to let things go."

Contact Lisa Fernandez at 408-920-5002.

Copyright © 2011 The Daily Review. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Media NewsGroup, Inc. by NewsBank, Inc.

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Coroner: Cause of 82-year-old man's death was 1999 assault in San Jose | View Clip
01/26/2011
Contra Costa Times - Online

In a murderous month in San Jose, Lowell Noble is perhaps the most surprising victim of all: The 82-year-old man died Jan. 7, authorities say, because of a savage beating that occurred almost 12 years ago.

His attacker has been locked up for years, but on Wednesday, after an unusual ruling by the coroner, San Jose police re-opened the decade-old case as a homicide.

Noble was suffering from heart problems and diabetes when he died Jan. 7. While he needed a walker to get around, he enjoyed bridge and the Reader's Digest in his final years.

But despite his advanced age and health problems, the most significant factor in Noble's death was trauma to his head -- the traumatic brain injury he suffered on May 15, 1999 in a San Jose house, according to the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner.

More specifically, Noble suffered aspiration pneumonia because of dysphagia -- a swallowing problem. And that swallowing problem, the death certificate reads, was a direct result of his brain injury.

Prosecutors say it's too soon to tell whether they'll re-charge the attacker with murder or manslaughter. That man, Walter Jones, 49, is now serving a 16-year attempted murder sentence for savagely beating Noble and Jones' mother, Linda, whom Noble was dating at the time.

Dr. Michelle Jorden, who signed Noble's death certificate, declined to speak about the case, saying it against department policy to comment on open homicide investigations. But Santa Clara County Sheriff Capt. Kevin Jensen, who oversees the coroner's office, said: "In general, the concept of delayed fatals is this: If the event caused an injury, and that injury was the largest contributing factor in the death, then it can be ruled a homicide."

Family members say that although Noble survived the 1999 attack, he never fully recovered.

"Dad was never the same," his oldest daughter Mellissa Noble Asmussen said after his funeral service this week.

He suffered short-term memory loss and was never able to live after the attack on his own again.

Deputy District Attorney Brian Welch said he needs to review the entire case again before deciding whether to re-charge Jones. Jones was convicted of two counts of attempted murder and elder abuse. The other person Jones harmed that night was his mother, who lived in Campbell. Attempts to contact Linda Jones were unsuccessful..

Welch did say, it would be an uphill battle to obtain a murder conviction. .

California law presumes that if a victim dies more than three years after an assault, then it is not considered a result of the crime.

"Delayed fatals" happen regularly enough, but the gap between incident and death is usually much closer. In addition to Noble, San Jose had another one this year. Salvador Pena, a 56-year-old jewlery-music store owner in Alum Rock, was stabbed on Dec. 15, and died Jan. 8 as a result of those wounds.

San Jose police list Pena and Noble as 2011 homicide victims, bumping the number to nine.

Delayed fatals that are years-long, however, are more rare. But they do occur. In 2009, a coroner in Virginia ruled a Navy veteran died as the result of a 1976 shooting that left him a quadriplegic.

Prosecutors couldn't file charges, because Virginia law prevents murder prosecutions if the victim dies more than one year and one day after the fatal wound was inflicted.

Santa Clara University Law Professor Gerald Uelmen, a member of the O.J. Simpson defense team, said if Jones is charged with murder, "the case would likely come down to be a battle of the experts."

"Clearly, the longer the time lapses, the more difficult it will be," Uelman said.

But the gory details and legal challenges of Noble's delayed death were not what his two remaining daughters and others chose to remember at his funeral service Tuesday afternoon.

The service was celebrated by a small group, including an old college pal who also attended the University of Oregon, where Noble received bachelor's and master's degrees in chemistry. Noble had 17 patents under his name stemming from the 1950s. Among his inventions were 3D viewing glasses and electron tube sockets, according to his family He ran his own company, QD Technology in Los Gatos until he injured during the attack, his family said.

"Lowell was brilliant," Noble Pearson said in her eulogy.

But Noble's oldest daughter, Mellissa Noble Asmussen, 55, of San Jose, said her dad never bounced back after the brutal beating, where she said Jones punched and kicked her father in the head with his boots: "The doctors said Dad would have been a vegetable if he hadn't been so intelligent." Still to this day, she doesn't know what set off Jones.

After the attack, Noble was forced to close his business and move in with his middle daughter, Melenie Noble Pearson, and her husband.

Noble's wife, Robyn, died in 1984 of leukemia, and his youngest daughter, Melynda, died in 1996 when she was 32 years old.

The Noble family was surprised to learn that the coroner ruled their dad's death a homicide. And now, Noble Asmussen said she is "torn" about wanting her dad's attacker to be charged with another crime.

"I guess I feel like, yeah, Dad died that day, and now, it's just like we lost his shell," Noble Asmussen said. "But on the other hand, it's been so long. Maybe we just need to let things go."

Contact Lisa Fernandez at 408-920-5002.

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