Towse: views from the hill

February 28, 2007

Some cloud pictures as the storm clears

Filed under: photographs,weather — Tags: , , , — Towse @ 8:55 pm

[SFBay view from Tel Hill]

Ed Jew sez $5.7M ‘youth’ deal: Fast Pass to budget deficit

Filed under: politics,public transit — Tags: , — Towse @ 1:49 am

Today’s Examiner has a commentary by Ed Jew on pending (perhaps approved — the SFC doesn’t say on their site) legislation extending youth Fast Pass discounts to all “youth” ages 18-24.

His point is the one I was making a bit ago.

#1 How can the Supes justify the cost when Muni is stretching to balance its budget?

#2 Why 18-24 year olds? What makes them so special?

What about people older than 24 who are working a minimum wage? Don’t they deserve a break? Do we want age-based Muni fares? Should we have needs-based Muni fares? Why not give everyone a fare break and see if we can get people out of their cars and onto public transport?

This legislation is so cockeyed. What are the Supes thinking?

Geometric Sculpture of George W. Hart, mathematical sculptor

Filed under: URL — Towse @ 1:23 am

Geometric Sculpture of George W. Hart, mathematical sculptor.

George W. Hart does some amazing things. Click your way through his links, explore the Pavilion of Polyhedreality and Hart’s links to polyhedral sites.

February 27, 2007

Landslide In S.F. North Beach Prompts Evacuations

Filed under: life — Tags: , — Towse @ 8:08 pm

We were woken up around 6 am by the sound of helicopters, multiple helicopters, hovering nearby. The helicopters were all news helicopters, though, we could tell, because you couldn’t hear the high pitch whine of the AĆ©rospatiale Alouettes that the Coast Guard uses. Something newsworthy was up on our sweet little hill.

We turned on the radio (KCBS 740) and heard this: Landslide In S.F. North Beach Prompts Evacuations. Traffic on Broadway detoured around the block between Montgomery and Kearny. Morning commute traffic a mess. No one hurt. Lots of mud and rock.

The CBS5 site has pictures, raw video and a live Webcam setup to look at the slide.

455 Vallejo is teetering.

The helicopters went away for a few hours but now are back. We’ll wander over to see what we can see at some point.

Everything I know – Buckminster Fuller and other treats from Smashing Telly

Filed under: media,URL,video — Towse @ 7:16 pm

First heard about Smashing Telly over at Sour Grapes, where SG offered up a link to Jean-Luc Godard’s Alphaville.

Man, what a resource Smashing Telly is.

Everything from Jean-Luc Godard to this forty-one minute interview with Buckminster Fuller (“Everything I Know”) to over an hour with George Carlin to Charles and Ray Eames’ Powers of Ten to interviews with Philip Glass and Godfrey Reggio for The Making of Koyaanisqatsi.

David Galbraith explains: Smashing Telly is a hand edited collection of the best free, instantly available TV on the web. Not 30 second clips of a dog on a skateboard, or the millionth person to mime the Numa song, but full length programs. Smashing Telly, not Gimmick Telly.

Many of the items that I’ll be putting up on a regular basis are documentaries, since that’s what tends to be out there at the moment.

February 26, 2007

5.4 up near Petrolia

Filed under: book promotion,books,bookstores,life,quakes,writing — Towse @ 7:26 pm

Recent Earthquakes – Info for event nc40193932:

A moderate earthquake occurred at 4:19:54 AM (PST) on Monday, February 26, 2007.

The magnitude 5.4 event occurred 52 km (32 miles) W of Ferndale, CA.

The hypocentral depth is 0.4 km (0.2 miles)

Right at the seaward edge of the Cascadia subduction zone.

We’ll be having dinner with Susan Hough on Thursday after her author talk at Kepler’s down in Menlo Park for her newest book: Richter’s Scale: Measure of an Earthquake, Measure of a Man

(In the area? Stop on by! Thursday March 01, 2007 — 7:30 p.m. at Kepler’s in Menlo Park)

(Buy now!)

I’m sure the our dinner conversation talk will turn to local earthquakes and Cascadia and Hayward and San Andreas. It always does.

Not all Second Life $$ are made in Linden $$ and then converted …

Filed under: news — Tags: — Towse @ 5:33 pm

CBS announced today that it has entered into a strategic partnership with The Electric Sheep Company as part of its plans to increase its presence on Second Life and other online virtual worlds.

Electric Sheep is a New York-based creator of virtual-world content and has worked with CBS (nyse: CBS – news – people ) to launch Second Life communities for Showtime’s The L Word and for Star Trek, which is owned by CBS Paramount. The company also created a TV ad for the CBS sitcom Two And A Half Men that ran during the Super Bowl earlier this month. Electric Sheep’s other clients include Viacom’s (nyse: VIA – news – people ) MTV Networks, Time Warner’s (nyse: TWX – news – people ) AOL and Major League Baseball.


Family histories of Sharpton, Thurmond collide

Filed under: factoid,history — Towse @ 8:15 am

Family histories of Sharpton, Thurmond collide

Researchers from Ancestry .com traced Sharpton’s roots using a database with access to 5 billion records including birth and death certificates, slave narratives, census and bank records, and United States Colored Troops documents.

They discovered that Sharpton’s great-grandfather Coleman Sharpton was a slave owned by Julia Thurmond, whose grandfather was Strom Thurmond’s great-great-grandfather.

“I know there’s no such thing as a boring family tree,” said the chief family historian for, Megan Smolenyak, who presented the findings to Sharpton on Thursday. “I knew we would find something, but I certainly didn’t anticipate this.”

The information also showed his [Sharpton's] great-grandfather had been freed. Smolenyak said Sharpton was subdued and stunned when she told him about his family history.

Interesting histories.

Interesting times.

Update: Sharpton Wants DNA Test

February 23, 2007

3.4 on the Hayward Fault.

Filed under: quakes,San Francisco — Towse @ 11:59 pm

A minor earthquake occurred at 3:46:15 PM (PST) on Friday, February 23, 2007.
The magnitude 3.4 event occurred 3 km (2 miles) ESE of Berkeley, CA.
The hypocentral depth is 11 km ( 7 miles).

A sharp jolt here. No rumble. Set the collection of chimes attached to the fire escape jingling.

February 22, 2007

CBS5 brings you thirty minutes with Gavin un-cut. No question off the table.

Filed under: people,San Francisco,video — Towse @ 9:25 pm

KPIX brings you thirty minutes un-cut of San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom answering questions from KPIX CBS5′s Hank Plante.

An exclusive and you can bet your bottom dollar Newsom’s not going through this for each and every one of you newshounds out there. You could almost see Gavin draw in a breath after some questions and thinking, what is he going to ask next.

(And, sweet mercy, when will this be over?)

Plante: “Let me ask you another question. … There are rumors that you also used cocaine and other substances…”

(The actual news spot was far shorter. That’s also available at the site.)

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