Seattle green
11:24 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Part science, part art, pollinator pathway connects Seattle green spaces

This tiger swallowtail butterfly is a pollinator that could benefit from a little more green space.
Jim, the Photographer

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 11:34 am

When we think about improving urban food systems, we tend think about growing more vegetables — densely planted backyard plots and community gardens, with tiny tomatoes ripening in the sun. But according to some experts, we should start thinking smaller — way smaller — as in bugs.

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Pollution
9:09 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Asian fires clouding Seattle's sunny skies

A MODIS satellite image that shows the smoke yesterday very clearly.
Cliff Mass KPLU

The smoky skies over Seattle are likely from Asia and not Western fires, says Cliff Mass, KPLU weather forecaster and University of Washington professor.

In his blog post on the smoke, he said the air over us can be traced back to Asia at low levels.

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Tech news
7:39 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Social media rising to the top of places to go in natural disasters

New Zealander Kaleb Urike used social media to let people know he survived last year's Japanese earthquake and tsunami. Photo by Tom Banse

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 6:59 am

The next time a big wildfire erupts or an earthquake unleashes near you, Twitter, Google and Facebook might be useful places to turn. And not just you. Disaster response agencies are plunging into social media.

They can develop better situational awareness by seeking out your online gripes and observations. Digital platforms also provide an avenue to give more frequent official updates and correct misinformation during a catastrophe.

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Artscape
5:27 am
Mon July 9, 2012

In Seattle's International District, celebrating the Higo Variety Store

Masako (left) and Ayako Murakami in their Higo Variety Store.
Dean Wong

An old five-and dime store that helped Seattle's Japanese community rebuild itself after World War II is being celebrated in a new way: in a permanent exhibit by the Wing Luke Museum in a local gift shop/art gallery.

The exhibit features a variety of old store merchandise from a business that lasted 96 years. There's also an assortment of personal items from two generations of the Japanese-American Murakami family.

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Environment
5:01 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Highway 520 design in federal court on Tuesday

The state's planned replacement for the SR 520 bridge across Lake Washington has sparked a lawsuit from Seattle neighborhoods, who say it is too big and too expensive. It is nearly twice as wide as the old bridge.
WSDOT image

Even as its construction is well underway, design plans for the new 520 bridge across Lake Washington continue to spark controversy.

A federal judge will hear oral arguments tomorrow in a lawsuit against the replacement project by the State Department of Transportation and the Federal Highway Administration.

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Environment
5:00 am
Mon July 9, 2012

The hunt is back on for gypsy moths in Washington

Washington State Department of Agriculture employee Bill Weatherspoon installs a gypsy moth trap in 2011.
Photo courtesy Mike Louisell / WSDA

The gypsy moth is considered to be the most destructive forest pest in the country. When they're caterpillars, they have a voracious appetite for almost any kind of tree or bush, and they can strip a tree bare overnight.

Gypsy moth caterpillars are capable of defoliating hundreds of thousands of acres of forest per year. This month, the Washington State Department of Agriculture is installing thousands of gypsy moth traps around the state.

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Obituary
2:50 pm
Sun July 8, 2012

Oscar-winning film star Ernest Borgnine dies

Ernest Borgnine
The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES — Ernest Borgnine, the beefy screen star known for blustery, often villainous roles, but who won the best-actor Oscar for playing against type as a lovesick butcher in "Marty" in 1955, died Sunday. He was 95.

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Your Money
2:37 pm
Sun July 8, 2012

Raising minimum wage: A help or harm?

Wendy Brown of Schenectady, N.Y., holds a sign before an Occupy Albany rally pushing for a raise in New York's minimum wage on May 29, 2012.
Mike Groll AP

Originally published on Sun July 8, 2012 5:55 pm

Back in 1912, Massachusetts became the first place in America to introduce a minimum wage, but it would take another quarter century before a national minimum wage was set.

President Franklin Roosevelt made it law in 1938, that any hourly worker had to be paid at least 25 cents an hour. It was revolutionary, and very few countries had anything like it.

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
7:34 pm
Sat July 7, 2012

Extreme heat is killing extreme numbers of fish

Originally published on Sat July 7, 2012 7:35 pm

Where I live, near Williamsburg, Virginia, it reached 100 degrees today, and according to meteorologists, felt like 108. All across the country, the story is the same: record-breaking heat.

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Food
12:09 pm
Sat July 7, 2012

Manju: A taste of home for Seattle's Japanese community

Manju from Umai Do Japanese Sweets, a bakery in Seattle, Wash.
Melisa Goh NPR

Originally published on Wed July 25, 2012 6:04 am

Manju (MAHN-jew) are Japanese dough buns — often sweet — made from pounded rice flour dough and flavored fillings. In Japanese culture, a box of manju is what you'd take to someone's house on a special occasion, like Children's Day. Or you might simply snack on it with a cup of tea. But manju have to be eaten fresh, and they're pretty labor intensive, so nowadays, they can be hard to find.

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Religion
11:02 pm
Fri July 6, 2012

Evangelicals fight over therapy to 'cure' gays

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 1:46 pm

Supporters call it "conversion therapy." Critics call it "praying away the gay." Whatever name you use, it's creating a ruckus in Christian circles about whether a person can change his or her sexual orientation. And now the largest "ex-gay ministry" is rejecting the approach.

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Marijuana legalization
10:50 pm
Fri July 6, 2012

Are Northwest voters ready to legalize pot?

Paul Stanford, center, and other backers of the Oregon Cannabis Tax Act on the steps of the Oregon Statehouse. Photo by Virginia Alvino

Originally published on Fri July 6, 2012 4:15 pm

OLYMPIA, Wash. – It looks like voters in both Oregon and Washington will decide this fall whether to legalize recreational marijuana. Backers of an Oregon ballot measure submitted a final batch of petitions Friday to the Secretary of State. In Washington, a pot legalization initiative has already qualified for the ballot. The question now: are Northwest voters ready to say ‘okay’ to getting high?

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The Two-Way
10:47 pm
Fri July 6, 2012

Yahoo, Facebook Reportedly In Ad Deal

Originally published on Fri July 6, 2012 12:52 pm

Yahoo and Facebook have agreed to re-sheath their patent swords and play nice — at least for now.

The two companies have struck a broad advertising partnership as part of a deal to end a patent dispute, Kara Swisher reports on the technology blog All Things Digital, quoting "sources close to the situation."

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Education
4:31 pm
Fri July 6, 2012

Washington gets wiggle room under No Child Left Behind

Washington schools will be able to sidestep some of the toughest standards and punishments in the federal No Child Left Behind law. The federal government announced Friday it will give waivers to Washington and Wisconsin.

Washington Superintendent of Public Instruction Randy Dorn has said under the current law, nearly every school in the state would get socked with penalties. Schools are supposed to have all of their students meeting learning standards by 2014, or else lose control over big chunks of federal money.

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Tech news
12:19 pm
Fri July 6, 2012

Malware may knock thousands off Internet on Monday

Despite repeated alerts, the number of computers that are probably infected is more than 277,000 worldwide.

The warnings about the Internet problem have been splashed across Facebook and Google. Internet service providers have sent notices, and the FBI set up a special website.

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