"Post Office Buildings With Character,
and Maybe a Sale Price" Jim
Wilson, The New York Times.
the main post office
in Berkeley, Calif
"They are glad to get their mail, send off a package and
maybe chat a bit while they still can. In December, the government
said it planned to sell it.
'We don't know what's going
to happen to this beautiful, Depression-era architectural jewel,'
said Sara Meric, 87, a retired script analyst who has used this
post office since 1959. 'If, God forbid, this slaughter does go
through, some entity should make sure that this building is protected.'
The Santa Monica post office,
with its distinctive PWA Moderne style, is one of about 200 post
offices around the country, dozens of them architecturally distinctive
buildings, that the Postal Service has indicated it may choose
to sell in coming years because of its financial problems."
"King of the Entree Roost at Angeline's"
"The most popular entrée
at Angeline's Louisiana Kitchen in downtown Berkeley is not the
gumbo, or the jambalaya, or the Creole-style BBQ shrimp, or the
hush puppies, or the fried catfish, or the crawfish etouffee.
If you want something a bit
sweet and cool to smooth out the spicy accents of the deeply flavored
gumbo at Angeline's Louisiana Kitchen in downtown Berkeley, you
could go for the 'swamp water.' "
BPD Ofc Rashawn Cummings Area 4 Coordinator emails
Lieutenant Dave Frankel of
the Berkeley Police Department is the Area 4 Commander and he
invites anyone who wishes to have coffee with him to join him
at: Café Leila, 1724 San Pablo Ave, Tuesday, March 12th,
2013, from 2pm to 3pm.
The March 2013 Berkeley PD
Newsletter is now
"Life on Four Strings"
is a film about virtuoso
ukelele player Jake Shimabukuro by Tadashi Nakamura
March 12 2013, The exclusive
PBS Hawai'i broadcast premiere
March 18 2013, FREE UC Berkeley
145 Dwinelle Hall, 6PM, UC Campus, Berkeley, CA
April 20 2013, NVC Memorial
Hall, Seattle, WA
May 10 2013, The National PBS Broadcast Premiere
Councilman Worthington emails
of events of importance
Tibetan Flag Raising Ceremony;
March 10, 8:30am, Civic Center Park, Downtown Berkeley
Berkeley Tenant Union Potluck; March 13, 6:30-8:30pm, Grass Roots
House, 2022 Blake, Berkeley between Milvia and Shattuck
Redistricting Berkeley; March
15, The City Council will be voting on new district lines.
"SF housing chief's leave under scrutiny" by John Coté at sfgate.com.
"San Francisco Housing Authority Director Henry Alvarez,
who is on paid medical leave, reportedly is setting up a restaurant
with his wife in Berkeley."
"Alice Waters' Chez Panisse restaurant
closed after fire"
Doug Oakley at contracostatimes.com.
"The world-famous Chez
Panisse restaurant was damaged by a fire early Friday morning,
but a sprinkler in a downstairs dining room may have saved the
building, fire officials said.
As the sun rose over the
Berkeley hills, a tearful Alice Waters stood in front of the iconic
Berkeley institution that she cofounded in 1971, recalling a fire
that started more than 30 years ago, as she cooked in the kitchen.
'It brings up a lot of emotional
sadness for me,' a barely audible Waters said to rows of news
cameras and microphones. 'It reminded me of the first time when
the fire took out a wall between the kitchen and the dining room.
I'm just glad nobody was in the building.' "
unemployment report: What kind of jobs is the economy creating?"
"The US economy added
236,000 jobs last month, with construction and health care being
two big contributors. However, 12 million Americans are still
officially counted as unemployed."
Mid 2012 CMC
Bilogics, a Danish concern, purchased all of Xoma's Berkeley
faclities which includes the 7th and Heinz facility. Among the
changes made to the property are the trimming back of overgrowth
including trees. The trimming nicely reveals the building. Hopefully
new planting and some remodel will complete the project.
Seems the Friends of West
Berkeley are suing our city over 740 Heinz, specially our position
on Wareham's development of the property. (I've talked to dozens
here in the west who, though friendly to Berkeley, are not memebers
of the group and once more have never heard of it. But that's
another story--or not.) Wareham now wants to completely demolish
the old building. The Friends do not.
Two Saturdays ago an environment-Green
tour of the west was given. I'm told Potter Creek's "environmentalist"
Rick Auerbach was an active participant.
Think I'll have a beer
I'll have to go to Westside,
our sour beer tasting-room isn't open yet.
"Berkeley Conference on Copyright Formalities
& Registries, April 18-19"
such as registration of claims and placing notices on copies,
may seem outdated, pedestrian, and well boring. They are anything
but. Formalities, which in the past three decades have largely
disappeared from American copyright law, may be about to stage
a comeback. Why? Because copyright formalities may be one of the
most important strategies for reconciling copyright law and the
challenges of the digital age. "
Bob Kubik sends a link to
the Wall Street Journal photo essay
"Inside the Sistine Chapel ".
a reader from Germany writes
of Europes' late-Winter blizzard
Not much happening in Deutschland
these days except [bleep]y weather. But since we don't have
to go out in it we don't particularly care. It's hibernation
photo of our backyard fishpond
taken from our living room
"Everybody has to believe
in something. I believe I'll have another beer."
"Twinkies buyers hungry for more Hostess
cakes" Candice Choi,
AP at sfgate.com.
"The new buyers of Twinkies
apparently developed a sweet tooth for Hostess snack cakes.
Apollo Global Management
and Metropoulos & Co., which made a joint offer to snap up
the famous cream-filled cakes, have also entered the contest to
buy Drake's, which include Devil Dogs and Yodels, according to
a source who requested anonymity because the sale process is private.
The fresh offer poses a challenge
to McKee Foods, the maker of Little Debbie cakes. Hostess had
previously picked McKee's $27.5 million offer as the 'stalking
horse' bid for Drake's that set the floor for an auction. The
deadline to submit competing offers was 5 p.m. EDT Tuesday.
The offer for Drake's from
Apollo and Metropoulos still needs to be reviewed to determine
whether it qualifies, according to the source. If not, the auction
on Friday would be canceled and McKee would be picked as the buyer.
a regular reader comments
on the site choices made for the recent Green tour of west-Berkeley.
Again it's that battle/tale
of the two West Berkeleys - the one that has changed and the one
of the "mind's-eye".
I also see this as Green Corridor not selling itself as the authority
on manufacturing in the west. We still go to see the artisan cabinet
makers and pinging hammers of jewelers, while West Berkeley actually
perks new laundry detergent to save the world, new ways to sequester
carbon and robot manufacturing that's world renown!
"Despite police confrontation, Berkeley
protest ends peacefully" at
"Dozens of people marched
in the streets of Berkeley Tuesday night, demanding answers from
police after a transgender person died during an altercation with
a rendering of the French
School 9th Street campus-expansion
The result is more than just
a nice schoolyard or living landscape; it's a sustainable outdoor
learning environment that students can use year-round for learning,
play and community gathering. This space includes:
A tree-shaded allée to provide a visual and sound buffer
from the street.
A basketball court and a half-size soccer field with real grass.
Separate areas for energetic play and quiet play.
Space for outdoor classrooms.
A stage for student performances or outdoor learning.
An expanded garden.
A seasonal creek where students can explore.
A permanent place for the PA and parent interactions.
A sustainable design.
"Jewish Urban Farming Fellowship" by Zachary Epstein at farmbasededucation.org
is about Potter Creek's urban farm.
"Training program for
young adults ages 21-31, that integrates urban organic farming,
social justice work and progressive Jewish living and learning.
Twelve Urban Adamah Fellows
are selected each season to operate an organic farm and educational
center, intern with community organizations addressing issues
at the intersection of poverty, food security and environmental
stewardship, and learn an approach to Jewish tradition that opens
the heart and builds joyful community. Applicants do not need
any farming or Jewish knowledge to participate. Fellows come from
a wide range of backgrounds and experiences. We are looking for
individuals who are most likely to leverage the gifts of the program
to make positive change in their own lives and in the world."
Patrick Kennedy builder of micro-units emails "What's
behind sky-high Berkeley apartment rents?" by Doug Oakley
at Oakland Tribune.
"Apartment rents hit
an all-time high here last year as more affluent families moved
to the city and competed for a stagnant supply of homes, according
to the city's rent control board.
It's a situation going on
all around the bay as former homeowners pummeled by the foreclosure
crisis and new hires in the technology industry compete for a
limited supply of rentals.
The median rent for a two-bedroom
apartment was $1,850 a month in the last quarter of 2012, an 8.8
percent increase over the year before, according to the Berkeley
Rent Stabilization Board. A one-bedroom now goes for about $1,325
a month, up 6 percent, the board said.
'It's pretty amazing,' said
rent board Deputy Director Stephen Barton. 'The rents in new buildings
downtown are crossing $3,000 a month for a two-bedroom because
they are in new prime condition and in easy walking distance of
the UC Berkeley campus and BART.'
Barton said about one-third of the renters in the city are students.
What's happening in Berkeley
is similar to other cities that ring the bay: more affluent people
moving in fueled by jobs in the technology sector coupled with
a housing supply that can't keep pace. And people who lost their
homes to foreclosure in the last five years are now renting."
"Office Depot on Gilman" is a report by Cooper Price in Berkeley High's
"While Berkeley is known
for its opposition to big business, a new Whole Foods Market is
slated to take over the current Office Depot building on Gilman
Street next year and does not seem to be meeting resistance. Whole
Foods will not tear down the existing building, but instead plans
to have it refurbished by Foothill/Pratt Ventures, a local development
Whole Foods had previously
tried to open a store in Albany, but local residents objected
strongly to the project and sued Whole Foods into stopping the
development of their proposed store. Regardless, a large business
like Whole Foods will certainly contribute tax revenue to the
city, as well as provide employment."
"Evicted Berkeley food vendors seek new
sidewalk space" Judith
Scherr at insidebayarea.com.
"Ann Vu took on thousands
of dollars of debt to buy and equip the Heavenly Healthy Foods
trailer from which she used to sell her popular Vietnamese sandwiches
near the UC Berkeley entrance at Telegraph Avenue and Bancroft
But since the city's Finance
Department shut her business down with two days' notice in mid-December,
the trailer has been collecting dust (and parking and insurance
fees) at a lot designated by the State Health Department for food
Neither Vu nor the two other
vendors whose Telegraph and Bancroft Way permits were yanked at
the same time -- Michael Koh of Dojo Dog and Jack Huynh of Kettle
Korn Star -- broke any laws. Their permits were suspended due
to safety issues arising from the university's large construction
project adjacent to the vendors' location."
In what I believe to be irresponsible
frontier mentality extends to guns" by Caleb Garling
is at sfgate.com.
Glock g34 model parts
made from plastic using 3-D printing process
an example of a
new digital frontier in weaponn
is often seen as a key component for a new economy in which consumers
simply -print' off products, rather than ordering them online
or trudging through the aisles of the store. The idea of both
customizing and producing new goods from the comfort of the home
suggests a very different world of shopping.
Yet, that long view has also
been met with resistance. Many fear that the technology could
decimate key industries like manufacturing, retail and shipping.
In other cases, as with any new technology set loose, critics
fear that it could have other dire consequences, especially without
Those concerns found a poster
child at the South by Southwest Interactive festival in Austin,
Texas, this week.
A Texas law student, Cody
Wilson, used the SXSW showcase to present a new website, Defcad.com
- a search engine designed to provide unfettered access to files
that dictate 3-D designs. The site, he said, will provide an unrestricted
channel to the designs of any potential product, from a hammer
to a prosthetic limb. (The technology to actually produce many
goods is still a ways off, however.)
What raised eyebrows about
Defcad was Wilson and the group behind it. Called Defense Distributed,
the Texas group is home to the 'Wiki Weapon Project,' an effort
to develop files to print off weapons, such as assault rifles
like the AR-15, the model used in the Newtown, Conn., massacre."
Based on my life-long familiarity
with firearms, I don't believe that this weapon as shown, can
be assembled and/or fired.
"24-Year-Old Swedish Man Pilots Plane to
And From the Stratosphere"
by Jason Bittel at slate.com.
Maybe you'll never
travel to space
but you could make
your own aircraft to send up there
"Meet David Windestål. He lives in Hjo, Sweden. He
has a beautiful wife, Johanna, and a dog named Neo. He is 24 years
old. And he just got back from flying an aircraft through the
edge of space.
Of course, Windestål
wasn't in the jet. And a good thing, too. The aircraft was only
about the size of a mailbox, and it crashed into a tree on return.
Moments prior, the remote-controlled plane had been lifted more
than 20 miles above Earth by hydrogen balloon where it could stare
at the line between blue marble and black void. Once the balloon
popped, the tiny jet plummeted until reentering Windestål's
range of reception where he was then able to pilot it to a more
or less safe landing.
Windestål doesn't work
for the military or the Swedish equivalent of NASA. Yet he was
able to bring back ISS-like images from the great beyond using
only a couple of hundred dollars' worth of electronics sold on
Amazon. His first person view (FPV) flight into the atmosphere
displays the remarkable reach of hobby technology. And it raises
the question: If David Windestål can pal around the stratosphere,
what's to stop common folk like you or me from kicking down the
door of the gods?
Windestål's even been
kind enough to catalogue his FPV flight on RCExplorer.se, his
site dedicated to remote controlled flight and discovery. (His
tagline? 'Exploring the RC World, One Crash At A Time ') You'll
just need a remote-control FunJet, a GoPro camera, and an army
surplus balloon full of hydrogen."
U.S. is not ready for a cyberwar" washingtonpost.com.
A recent report by a task force of the Defense Science Board on
cyber-conflict makes clear that all is not well in preparing for
this new domain of warfare.
The U.S. military often uses
'red' teams to challenge established 'blue' teams in exercises.
According to the report, small red teams, with only a short 'If
this level of damage can be done by a few smart people, in a few
days, using tools available to everyone, imagine what a determined,
sophisticated adversary with large amounts of people, time, and
money could do.' In another part of the report, the task force
hints that U.S. nuclear weapons, hardened to survive an atomic
blast in the Cold War, may not be ready to survive a cyber-onslaught.
While the task force didn't say what the vulnerability might be,
they called for 'immediate action' to make sure the nuclear weapons
What would cyberwar be like?
Potentially, 'hundreds' of simultaneous, synchronized offensive
and defensive cyber operations would be needed, and yet the task
force found the U.S. military is not ready. The task force said
it 'could find no evidence of modeling or experimentation being
undertaken to better understand the large-scale cyber war.' In
a recommendation that underscores the larger direction of U.S.
policy, the task force declared, 'time is of the essence in developing
a broader offensive cyber capability.'
A major offensive cyber capability
now seems essential in a world awash in cyber-espionage, theft
and disruption. Cyberwar may be over the next horizon."
"24-Year-Old Swedish Man Pilots Plane to
And From the Stratosphere"
The plane is the "Multiplex
Fun Jet, Park Flyer"
Multiplex USA introduces
the FunJet, an exciting new park flyer jet-style pusher plane
that is easy to launch, easy to land and flies great.
A European viewer emails
French is not a prerequisite
to view "Le papier ne
sera jamais mort" , vimeo.com.
"San Francisco Symphony musicians on strike"
Joshua Kosman at sfgate.
"San Francisco Symphony
musicians went on strike Wednesday over finances, just a week
before a planned tour of the East Coast that is supposed to include
a performance at Carnegie Hall."
"Berkeley creates the first graphene earphones,
and (unsurprisingly) they're awesome" Sebastian Anthony at extremetech.com.
"Researchers at the University of Berkeley in California
have created the first ever audio speaker (earphone). In its raw
state, without any kind of optimization, the researchers show
that graphene's superior physical and electrical properties allow
for an earphone with frequency response comparable to or better
than a pair of commercial Sennheiser earphones."
In POST FROM THE PAST read
about Sony light weight ear phones* and the Sony Discman, and
the recorded music experience through earphones. Most important
about earphone listening is that it's entirely and literally a
"head-trip". And, coupled with a discman it can be the
most music revealing of the all the ways to hear music.
*Sony Ultra Lightweight MDR-W08L
Vertical In-The-Ear Headphones, $9.32 at Amazon. A Sony Disman
is between $20.00 and $40.00.
POST FROM THE PAST
music isn't boring either, now read
Music on CD and the Anti-System--Batteries not Included
In 1991 Sony
issued CD SK 44939. This historic release contains Charles Ives'
Symphony No. 4, five hymns quoted by Ives in the symphony, and
Ives' Symphony No. 1. Michael Tilson Thomas conducts the Chicago
Symphony and Chorus in these works-Steven Epstein is the producer
and Bud Graham the recording engineer. The pieces were recorded
in the Medinah Temple, Chicago on April 15 and 17, 1989. Listening
to this digital production is a revelation. What strikes the listener
immediately is the apparent ease with which Tilson Thomas reveals
the massive and complex Ives' Fourth Symphony. Of the symphony
Paul Echols, Ives Society Vice-President, writes: "Ives's
Fourth Symphony has ranked as the ne plus ultra of the
American symphonies. Its reputation stems partly from the formidable
performance problems it poses. Although not overly long, . . .
the work requires extraordinary forces-an augmented orchestra,
an elaborate percussion battery, a mixed chorus-and this array
of performers must negotiate a host of daunting rhythmic and textual
complexities unprecedented in any symphonic composition up to
Ives's time. . . . The first publication of the work was prepared
by a team of editors for Leopold Stokowski's 1965 premiere performance.
Despite the enormous amount of work done on the score, it was
soon recognized that a more thoroughly researched critical edition
was needed. In 1976 the Ives Society commissioned William Brooks
to begin the work on such an edition, which in 1989 reached its
final stages of completion." It is from this critical edition
that Tilson Thomas conducts this Sony production. Michael Tilson
Thomas also conducted the edition's premiere performance in 1988,
in Miami, with the New World Symphony. Perhaps it is Tilson Thomas'
early acquaintance with this score that explains his apparent
ease of performance, or, perhaps by 1998 this revolutionary work
of 1916 simply had become understandable. Echols further observes
that the symphony's "compositional techniques themselves
represent . . . Ives's most far-reaching and arresting musical
ideas, developed over two decades of experimentation. Densely
layered textures are formed by superimposing two, three, and even
four separate ensembles, centered on different tonalities and
proceeding in different meters and tempi, constantly shifting
in and out of synchronization. This polytonal, polyrhythmic fabric
is (made) from fantastically intricate webs of contrapuntal lines,
moving in different rhythmic patterns and often at different dynamic
levels-now prominently in the foreground, then receding to a middle
or barely audible backround. The individual melodic lines are
frequently derived from the familiar Ivesian mix of old hymn tunes
and popular and patriotic songs (over thirty have been identified
to date in the work). . . . The borrowed material is sometimes
directly quoted . . . But just as often the tunes are skewed .
. . or fragmented (as they) skitter, in a dream-like fashion,
back and forth . . . now distinct, now fading into (silence)."
END POST FROM THE
confidently toward The Bowl, on the sidewalk in front of David's
Carolyn Jones writes her
more than usual cracker-jack story in "Berkeley
mayor pushes city to prosperity.
Politics 1A, according to Berkeley's longest-serving mayor, Tom
(1) Hire a good staff and stay out of their way.
(2) Pick your battles carefully.
(3) Don't hold a grudge. Your enemies today could be your friends tomorrow.
This recipe has brought Bates,
75, more than 30 years of success in the fickle and thorny world
of East Bay politics, and helped him shepherd one of the Bay Area's
most famously ornery cities into an era of prosperity and relative calm.
Call it Pax Berkeleyana.
Crime has plummeted to its lowest level in 50 years. Schools have
improved. Home values have remained high (the median home price
is $720,000, according to the most recent census figures). Major
hubs for environmental and disability rights groups have opened.
Hotels, theaters and galleries are all thriving, and more are
on the way.
'I don't agree with him on
everything, but when you look at what he's done citywide, he has
been an incredible leader. I'd put him at the top,' said Boona
Cheema, recently retired director of a homeless services agency
in Berkeley who's worked with Bates since the early 1970s and
often tangled with him over homeless issues. 'On the environment,
public safety, schools, housing ... he has been fantastic for
Bates says this will almost certainly be his final term in office,
capping a political career that's included 20 years in the Assembly,
four on the Alameda County Board of Supervisors and four terms
as Berkeley mayor."
"How an Environmental Law Is Harming the
Gammon at eastbayexpress.com.
environmental law needs to be reformed because NIMBYs are using
it to block smart growth.
Parker Place, proposed
for downtown Berkeley, is tied up in the courts even though it
would be one of the greenest housing developments in city history
Ali Kashani thought
he had a sure thing. In 2008, the longtime Berkeley developer
proposed to build one of the greenest housing projects in East
Bay history. Kashani has long been an advocate for smart-growth
development - dense housing and mixed-use projects built on major
transit corridors in urban areas. And the architect that he commissioned
for his smart-growth project in Berkeley designed it to meet LEED
Located on Shattuck Avenue,
Kashani's proposed Parker Place development sits on a major AC
Transit bus line and is just a short walk from the downtown Berkeley
and Ashby BART stations. Residents are to receive free transit
passes and have access to car sharing. Plus, there will be 120
bike parking spots, an onsite bicycle repair shop, and electrical
plug-in stations for electric cars and plug-in hybrids.
The 155-unit project also
includes adaptive reuse of the existing architecture, drought-tolerant
landscaping, rainwater reuse, and an onsite retention pond for
irrigation. Thirty-one of the units will be affordable housing,
and there will be a medical clinic for the homeless onsite.
In other words, the Parker
Place project is a liberal environmentalist's dream. It has won
the endorsement of the Greenbelt Alliance, an environmental group
that advocates for smart growth, and TransForm, a progressive
organization that backs public transit. Both groups recognize
that Parker Place will help Berkeley meet its climate-change goals,
because it will provide much-needed urban housing near jobs and
mass transit, thereby helping lessen the need for suburban sprawl
and greenhouse-gas-belching commutes.
But nothing's ever a sure
thing in Berkeley, a city that is home to some of the most vocal
and stubborn anti-growth activists in the state. In November 2010,
after the Berkeley City Council approved Parker Place, a small
group of these activists sued to block the project, using the
California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) to do it. And now,
more than four years after Kashani unveiled his proposal, it's
still tied up in litigation. "
"Double shooting at Berkeley's Ashkenaz
a video update of this robbery-shooting at abc7local.
Planet Owner-Editor, Becky
O'Malley writes in her
"It's again time to
consider the question . . . : why are we here and what do we want
There's now a patchwork quilt
of Berkeley-centric publications both online and in print which
when agglomerated do a pretty fair job of letting the small number
of those who care find out what's going on. That might be enough.
What do you think?
As always, we welcome your
comments, as long as you're willing to sign your name to back
them up. The address is still firstname.lastname@example.org. "
"Berkeley school's gardening, cooking programs
could be cut" abclocal.com.
"A popular gardening and cooking program at an elementary
school in Berkeley may be cut if a new source of funding isn't
found. That's because a change in the qualifying guidelines means
that a decade of federal grants will no longer be available. "
Berkeley Department of Music Improvisation Symposium Concert"
"To non-musicians (and
even to some musicians), improvisation might seem incomprehensible.
Whereas playing a pre-written piece of music requires rote memorization,
improvisation involves an entirely different set of skills, one
that includes an attuned sense of listening to and dialoguing
with others, as well as a solid foundation from which to deviate.
The Improvisation Weekend, hosted by UC Berkeley's Department
of Music, is three days devoted to mastering the art, a skill
that could easily be applicable to other areas of life.
Sun., March 17, 8 p.m. , $20.50, $22.50"
"Access and excellence, locally and globally"
"On the scale of some
of the world's great universities (such as Oxford and Cambridge)
that date back to the Middle Ages, the University of California,
Berkeley, chartered in 1868, is a relative newcomer. The flagship
of the 10-campus University of California system, UC Berkeley
has maintained its position as one of the world's pre-eminent
universities for decades. It is one of the few public universities
in the US that ranks alongside the nation's elite private institutions
such as Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of
Technology. Created by the state of California as a public land-grant
university, it serves the educational needs of local people
while maintaining a global reputation."
"Berkeley, A Look Back: Pensions, planting,
global politics were big topics in town" by Steven Finacom, Berkeley Historical Society
"The city was discussing
a new pension plan for Berkeley firefighters 75 years ago. The
Berkeley Daily Gazette for March 15, 1938, reported that the city
manager was telling the City Council about 'the need for a complete
pension system for all employees of the city.' Revised pensions
for firefighters were a first step."
About a concern of his firefighter
customers first voiced to me by Jerry Victor at the time of the
"Tesla's Model S meets the jaws of life" with video
is at sfgate.com.
"Brock Archer teaches
fire fighters how to rescue crash victims from crumpled cars.
To him, the sleek and sexy Model S looked like an ideal teaching
Most first responders, Archer
said, don't know what to do with electric vehicles. So long as
they don't puncture the battery pack, the risks of rescuers electrocuting
themselves are low, he said. But many fire fighters don't know
'There's a lot of confusion,
a lot of myths, a lot of urban legends about fire fighters getting
shocked,' Archer said. 'Rescuers have been working around gasoline-powered
vehicles, with flammable fuel, for a long time, and in some ways,
that's a lot more dangerous.'
So Archer approached Tesla
Motors about making a training video for rescuers, using the Model
S. Somewhat to his surprise, the company agreed."
"Using robots to drive down the cost of
solar" by Dana Hull
"When it comes to robotics,
most people think of driverless cars, manufacturing, moon rovers
and 1950s science fiction. But now QBotix, a venture-backed startup
based in Menlo Park, is bringing robotics to the fast-growing
solar industry, which is eager to drive down installation costs.
Rooftop solar panels are
ideal for many homes, commercial buildings and schools. But facilities
with greater energy needs often turn to larger 'groundmount' systems
that feature a field of solar arrays. Some groundmount systems
have 'single axis' tracking that allows the solar arrays to follow
the sun as it moves across the sky, much like a sunflower. Other
systems have even more sophisticated 'dual axis' tracking that
also follows the sun's elevation, which slowly changes with the
Tracking systems are popular
in California because the solar systems can harvest sunlight in
the late afternoon, when there's peak demand on the state's power
grid. But tracking systems are expensive to install -- they use
a lot of steel and often require concrete bases and mechanical
parts that are vulnerable to breakdown.
QBotix has created a robot, affectionately known as the 'Solbot,'
that can adjust the angle of each photovoltaic array with remarkable
precision, all while gathering data and feeding it back to the
home office. "
Chip and Andy, Potter Creek
workers, asked about the current use of the old chocolate factory.
POSTS FROM THE
Startups, LightSail Energy
and JCAP have moved to Potter Creek. LightSail
Energy at 2865 7th St Berkeley, are taking "all the space"
occupied by the old chocolate factory--a space I had previously
reported would be shared with other startups. They have financial
backing researching "energizing compressed gas" among
"LightSail Energy, Inc
"is a venture capital-funded
start-up in the $100 billion field of energy storage. We are gathering
a small, elite technical team to help bring our system from experiment
JCAP at 2929 7th are partnered
with LBNL. JCAP is an acronym for Joint Center for Artificial
"The Joint Center for
Artificial Photosynthesis is a DOE Energy Innovation Hub-a research
effort built on the premises that a critcal mass of creative scientists
and engineers working side by side can accomplish more, faster,
than researchers working separately, and that a proactive approach
to managing and conducting research is essential.Led by the California
Institute of Technology (Caltech), in partner- ship with the Lawrence
Berkeley National Lab (LBNL), SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory,
and a select group of universities, JCAP will involve scientists
and engineers nationwide. JCAP will keep the United States at
the forefront of solar-fuel research " reports solarfuelshub.org.
More information on this webpage.
END POSTS FROM
Ben Schrider plays for St.
the first of some high school
football stuff from PotterCreek
"Berkeley Rep's GROUND FLOOR Announces
"This June, as part
of an extraordinary new laboratory for collaboration, some of
the nation's most prominent and promising writers, directors,
and composers converge on Berkeley Repertory Theatre. Today, the
renowned nonprofit announced 18 selections for the second sizzling
summer lab at The Ground Floor, Berkeley Rep's Center for the
Creation and Development of New Work. During an intense four-week
period, dozens of artists will live, dine, create, and collaborate
at the Theatre's new campus in West Berkeley."
And, so . . . the new West-Berkeley
conitnues to continue!
Councilman Capitelli emails
Coffee with the Councilmember
is this Wednesday, March 20, 2013. 8:30
a.m. to 9:30 a.m., Café Roma, 1549 Hopkins Street, Berkeley
I hope you can join me for a short discussion about what is happening
in District 5 and at the City Council. Bring your questions. I
will have a few of my own. Rain will cancel.
regards, Laurie Capitelli
Berkeley City Council, District 5
"Federalization of Police"
Berkeley Copwatch "Democratic Education" Series.
March 18, 2013, Oakland based
civil rights attorney James Chanin will discuss the federalization
of Oakland police and the recent movement to hire William Bratton,
the champion of "Stop and Frisk" policing. With over
40 years in the struggle for police accountability, from the establishment
of the Berkeley Police Review Commission to the Negotiated Settlement
Agreement (NSA) that guides Oakland's police, James Chanin is
a leading voice in the fight to stop police abuse.
Free and Open to the public 2022 Blake Street in Berkeley.
Francisco's B Patisserie
Grande Macaron Cake
And, the perfect Morning Bun can be found and B
Patisserie --the perfect bake, and so a not-gooey inside, a hint
of butter, and just a moderate amount of sugar coating at around
The Morning Bun as art. Has be tried to be believed!
" America's Latest Phony Fiscal Crisis"Simon Johnson at bloombergnews.com.
link courtesy Bob
'In most countries that experience
a fiscal crisis, there is no ambiguity about the situation.
The government is unable
to sell debt at a reasonable interest rate. This probably
coincides with a broader shift out of domestic assets, as smart
investors read the writing on the wall or in the newspapers. The
currency collapses and, often, inflation accelerates. The government
is forced to slash spending and, cap in hand, asks for help from
the world's least popular ambulance service: the International
No part of this description fits the modern U.S. Rates on government
debt are very low, the currency isn't depreciating rapidly and
inflation seems stable. There is no imaginable circumstance under
which the U.S. would need to borrow from the IMF. Yet this great
land of innovation has undeniably invented its unique kind of
Or, to be more precise, we
have reinvented the uniquely American way of ruining our fiscal
Berkeley Reps West-Berkeley Campus
65, 000 sq feet on one city
block on 9th-to-10th at Harrison
One of Potter Creek's oldest
family businesses is experiencing an Internet attack. Not by computer
hackers from overseas but by "being played" on Yelp
with what seems a campaign of "bad reviews." Easy to
do, unconscionable, yet effective.
Our Pete Hurney has visitors
here from his native Boston, an old friend and his daughter are
getting the Hurney deluxe treatment.
Potter Creek's Tippett is
cutting back staff. Worst hit are the animation people with a
75 % reduction. Overseas competition is blamed.
Rocket restaurant supply
is moving their retail entrance from Potter to 7th and is planning
a bakery department.
"Exclusive: Sierra Nevada
Brewing Co. Opening a Taproom in Berkekey" at Grub Street San
Francisco on sfgate.com.
"Grub Street just learned this morning of a new taproom facility
coming to Berkeley's Fourth Street from the ever popular Sierra
Nevada Brewing Company. Details are a few right now, and the Chico-based
brewery is still working with an architect to design the new space,
but a rep for the company says that it will be a full-time tasting
room with food, though there won't be a full brewpub or restaurant.
Timing remains up in the air, but the space is at 2031 4th Street,
at University, and it joins the already popular Pyramid Brewery
alehouse on Gilman, and the upcoming Rare Barrel, an all-sour
brewery taking shape at 937 Carleton. We'll update you as soon
as we know more."
from my 1/26/13 post
Rumor has it that Sierra
will open a tasting room
in West Berkeley
Their Pale Ale, a favorite
of mine is reviewed
in this youtube
a regular reader writes
I agree with Brendan
Behan: "I have a total irreverence for anything connected
with society except that which makes the roads safer, the beer
stronger, the food cheaper and the old men and old women warmer
in the winter and happier in the summer."
Yesterday morning a Berkeley
PD officer received this text from a Berkeley High school student
"Hey, why are we in lockdown" ?
Wednesday at 10:21AM, an
employee of a business on the 2200 block of Shattuck Ave called
911 to report that a lone male in Army clothing
had attempted to rob the business using a simulated weapon. He
left the store when employees refused to cooperate. One employee
followed the suspect at a distance until he entered the downtown
Post Office. BPD responded en masse, arriving within minutes and
set up a perimeter around the Post Office. The police also contacted
staff at Berkeley High and directed them to temporarily lock the
school down. Postal employees inside were notified as well. Officers
contacted and detained the suspect without incident. He was
transported to the BPD jail after being positively identified
as the robber. After re-contacting BHS to lift the lock down,
explanation was given to school officials.
Displaced Telegraph Food Vendors Will Move to Bancroft and College"
"Dojo Dog, Healthy Heavenly
Foods and Kettle Corn Star will be back in business adjacent to
the UC campus within a few weeks, says Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates."
"Chez Panisse fire update: Damage worse
than thought, 'more significant demolition project' looms" Paolo Lucchesi at sfgate.com.
"Last week, Chez Panisse
began the process of rebuilding following its March 8 fire.
As previously, noted that
Kip Mesirow - the person who originally built the Berkeley institution
- has been brought in from the East Coast. This weekend, the construction
crew peeled back the layers to see what they're dealing with,
and as often happens with fire aftermaths, the damage is worse
than originally thought.
Sadly, it won't simply be
an aesthetic reconstruction of the porch and facade, where the
majority of the fire damage is. Instead, it turns out that Chez
Panisse must remove both the top and bottom porches that face
"Berkeley Symphony to close its season
with a world premiere song cycle by Steven Stucky" Sue Gilmore in the Contra Costa Times.
"The Berkeley Symphony,
under music director Joana Carneiro, has boldly incorporated a
commissioned world premiere from a contemporary composer on each
of its programs this season and is about to conclude that admirable
project with a work from Pulitzer Prize winner Steven Stucky,
who has been the orchestra's 'Music Alive' composer-in-residence
this year. Stucky's 'The Stars and the Roses,' a song cycle for
tenor voice and orchestra, will close out Berkeley Symphony's
2012-13 season in Zellerbach Hall on March 28, on a program that
also includes Anton Bruckner's Symphony No. 4 in E flat major."
marriage in the U.S. Supreme Court: Berkeley couple at the center
of historic fight over Proposition 8" by Howard Mintz,
"Militant held in Daniel Pearl killing"
Richard Leiby, washingtonpost.com.
forces in Karachi have arrested a militant in connection with
the murder of Daniel Pearl, the Wall Street Journal reporter who
was abducted 11 years ago in that southern port city and beheaded,
officials said Tuesday."
networks crash at South Korean banks, media companies; North Korea
attack suspected" at washingtonpost.com.
"Computer networks at
two major South Korean banks and three top TV broadcasters went
into shutdown mode en masse Wednesday, paralyzing bank machines
across the country and prompting speculation of a cyberattack
by North Korea.
Screens went blank promptly
at 2 p.m. (0500 GMT), with skulls popping up on the screens of
some computers - a strong indication that hackers planted a malicious
code in South Korean systems, the state-run Korea Information
Security Agency said. Some computers started to get back online
more than 2 hours later."
"Yelp Extortion Allegations Stack Up :
More business owners come forward with tales of unethical behavior
by the popular San Francisco-based web site" by Kathleen Richards at eastbayexpress.com.
After my story 'Yelp and
the Business of Extortion 2.0' was published last month, Yelp
CEO Jeremy Stoppelman promptly launched into damage-control mode
- and for good reason. The story, which was picked up by national
news outlets including The New York Times and The Wall Street
Journal, detailed the accounts of local business owners who said
that sales reps at the popular user-generated review site offered
to move negative reviews of their businesses if they advertised.
Stoppelman immediately denied
the allegations on Yelp's official blog, criticizing my use of
anonymous sources and the credibility of one on-the-record source.
A few days later, he posted another response, optimistically titled
'East Bay Express Story Starts to Unravel.' But the reality was
just the opposite.
Since then, many business
owners from around the country have come forward - via e-mails
or comments on the Express' web site - alleging similar tales
of extortionist tactics by Yelp sales reps. To make matters worse,
Stoppelman's handling of the allegations exposed the company's
blaring hypocrisy. For example, he rebutted the story on Yelp's
blog, which, ironically, doesn't allow comments. Business owners
contend that they just want the same opportunity to respond to
negative, false, or damaging information about their businesses.
Instead, the only way for them to salvage their businesses' reputation
is by paying Yelp - regardless of whether the reviews are true
Have things changed since this report?
Perhaps an unimportant question,
as the Yelp model itself seems flawed--for it is easily played
and certainly lacks accountability.
Potter Street is being upgraded
with sewer work the focus. I'm told Wareham is involved.
reader Meridith Lear emails
Upcoming events on campus
Through Wednesday, May 1. Film
series. History of Cinema: The cinematic city (A UC Berkeley
course open to the public as space permits). Filmmakers have always
loved how cinema can capture or create a sense of place. These
works present the city variously as a dynamic visual attraction,
a celebration of modernity, a dystopian nightmare, a psychic projection,
or a vehicle for social commentary. University of California,
Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, 2575 Bancroft Way
and Telegraph. Tickets, directions and parking.
"Algae façade makes house truly
"An innovating new building
in the northern German city of Hamburg is hoping to harvest heat
from its algae-covered façade.
For many of us, the concept
of living in a place with stuff growing on its walls won't necessarily
be foreign. What will be unusual for those who have experienced
the joys of residing in damp student flats and first homes away
from the parental nest, however, is the idea that microorganisms
flourishing on your walls is a good thing.
This is precisely the logic
at work in the construction of a state-of-the-art apartment building
in the once rundown, but increasingly trendy riverside quarter
of Wilhelmsburg in Hamburg. Clad on its two south-facing sides
with a transparent shell housing millions of microalgae, the five-storey
Bio Intelligence Quotient (BIQ) house has been designed to harness
heat generated by the microscopic plants and use it to warm building's
Know as a "bioreactor
façade", the shell works on the principle that the
microalgae, most no bigger than bacteria, are cultivated through
the supply of sunlight, liquid nutrients and CO2, a process that
Cliff Miller, Ricmond Ramblers
Motor Cycle Club emails a link to
exciting footage of a current Isle of Man motor
From a Berkeley Central Press
Release, blah, blah, blah.
"Berkeley has always
been known for its diversity in thought, the arts, people, businesses
and lifestyle - a place welcoming of new ideas, innovative concepts
and distinctive design.
Now, there is a new place
to call home in the Center of Downtown Berkeley: Berkeley Central
- a modern, new-for-rent residential property featuring 143 limited-edition
loft-style residences created to provide the exceptional Berkeley
experience just steps from everything!
On Thursday, March 21, Berkeley
Central celebrated the neighborhood with a unique Grand Opening
event which also highlighted some of the neighborhood's finest
restaurants, music and art.
Featuring fantastic food
from Revival Bar & Kitchen, La Note and Skates On The Bay,
the Progressive Floor Party format also showcased a unique photographic
exhibit by local photographer Johnna Arnold from Traywick Contemporary
Gallery and culminated on the Penthouse level with a live performance
by American Nomad.
Originally launched as Arpeggio,
Berkeley Central provides Downtown Berkeley with a distinctively
modern residence in the center of the city's hub. Berkeley Central
offers a new-for-rent option for those who want to enjoy the urban
surroundings and bustling atmosphere of downtown, but want to
live in a modern, newly constructed rental community.
Remaining true to its commitment
to invest in the Bay Area, CityView is excited to offer a unique
living experience for those seeking the flexibility of leasing
"After-School Music Program Asking for
Instruments, Instructors" at
"Berkeley, an after-school
music program, is currently recruiting college students to volunteer
as instructors and hosting a citywide used instrument drive.
Magnus Mentors, a company comprised of Berkeley based undergraduate
and law students, has created a new program called SCORE Berkeley
that is about to rock the kids at Willard Middle School.
They have teamed up with the Berkeley Unified School District
to create free after-school music classes for middle school students.
The group started the program to encourage creativity, engagement
and teamwork in young people.
Students participating in the program will have the opportunity
to learn the guitar, bass, piano and drums and will be encouraged
to form their own rock bands.
The inaugural eight-week
program begins on Friday, April 12, and is open to all students
at Willard Middle School. A final performance will be held in
"As technology continues to advance at
an exponential rate, so has the demand for people who know how
to create and work with it, and UC Berkeley is looking to ensure
that its graduates don't get left in the dust" at dailycal.org.
Its efforts come at a time
when some experts are claiming that computer-programming knowledge
is integral to staying ahead in the technology age. In fact, they
argue, programming is a new form of literacy that may soon join
the ranks of reading and writing skills.
In fall 2009, Dan Garcia,
a professor in the department of electrical engineering and computer
sciences, piloted a new and revamped computer science course for
nonmajors called Computer Science 10: The Beauty and Joy of Computing.
CS 10 is a lab-based class in which students learn the basics
of programming that can be applied to any field of study. The
class serves as a model for the new AP Computer Science course
being developed by the National Science Foundation for high school
END MISCELLANEOUS RAMBLING
from our log
3/9/13 --10:34 AM---irritnat
in front room, mucus membrane irritation overrides HEPA filter,
watery eyes, itchy dry skin, coughing, wear respirator.
in front room, mucus membrane irritation overrides HEPA filter,
watery eyes, itchy dry skin, coughing, wear respirator.
3/20/13==irritnat in front room, mucus membrane irritation
overrides HEPA filter, watery eyes.
3/21/13--10:07 PM==irritnat in front room, mucus membrane irritation
overrides HEPA filter, watery eyes.
You can find more information
about our current weather conditions than is good for you at www.wunderground.com
Want to see weather coming
in, going out, beautiful sunsets, and much, much more? Check out
This very hip site was in an email from reader and contributor,
Tony Almeida. Read Tony's Jimi Hendrix story on the only page that routinely gets
more hits than Scrambled Eggs.
Ramblers' motorcycle club member, Cliff Miller emails a very
If you ever need to get a
human being on the phone at a credit card company or bank, etc.,
this site tells you how to defeat their automated system and get
you to a human being within a few seconds.
Best gas prices in 94710,
as well as all of US and Canada, are here
Kimar finds Costco routinely
has the lowest price.
Bay Area home prices from sfgate.com
Bay Area foreclosures from sfgate.com
Our City Council update is
Our Planning Commision update
Our City of Berkeley Boards
and Commissions page is here--redone
of crime-in-progress should first go to Berkeley PD dispatch--911
or non-emergency, 981-5900. THEN make sure you notify EACH of
these City people.
Coordinator, Berkeley PD - 981-5774.
aid to Darryl Moore - 981-7120 email@example.com
City Councilman firstname.lastname@example.org
AND check out BPD feature
are these Suspects."
The original owner of all
posted material retains copyright. The material is used only to