Groove Notes writer and KPLU jazz host Kevin Kniestedt lists the 10 releases that stood out to him over the past year (with an informal ranking).

Read more on Groove Notes.

Faye Rasmussen / Shoreline School Distict

iPads are probably on a lot of people’s wish lists this holiday season, including teachers. Educators say the tablet devices allow them to reach students with learning difficulties in ways they’ve never been able to before. 

This just in: After 15 years of deliberation, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has yet to decide whether it will approve a genetically modified salmon for human consumption.

Now there's a catchy lead. But the truth is, the long-running regulatory saga of AquaBounty's application to sell salmon with a growth hormone gene from one fish plus a promoter of an antifreeze gene from another — which help it grow twice as fast as typical farmed salmon — does not seem headed toward a conclusion.

OLYMPIA, Wash. — State lawmakers are looking to trim $479 million off the state's $1.4 billion shortfall through a combination of cuts, fund transfers and delayed payments.

The news that scientists at the European Organization for Nuclear Research in Switzerland will talk Tuesday at 8 a.m. ET about "the status of their searches for the Standard Model Higgs boson" has reignited speculation that they might be about to say they've found the so-called God particle.

Last Wednesday, Dec. 7, Everett Herald photographer Mark Mulligan caught a rare sight on camera – a stellar sea lion feeding on an octopus. (See video inside.)

A Washington State University researcher says new findings about the emotions of rats could lead to treatments for mental illness in humans. Jaak Panksepp writes in the latest issue of the journal, Science.

He was reacting to a new study showing that rats demonstrate empathy and altruism toward a fellow rat who was stuck in a trap.

The Seattle School Board may ease the district's policy on selling junk food in vending machines to help student groups raise money for activities.

Florangela Davila

Forget about sugarplums dancing in his head. Architect Eric Drivdahl is drooling over cookie staircases, pretzel fences and a giant Rice Crispy treat mountain covered in 100 pounds of white chocolate.

"Look at this whole building, it's made out of candy," he says.

He's in the lobby of the Seattle Sheraton hotel, the site of the annual Gingerbread Village. This year's theme is "Holiday Express," with all six gingerbread marvels replicating world-famous train stations.

Looking for something to do this weekend? From holiday charity to folk music to classic Shakespeare, there's lots to do this weekend in Seattle and Tacoma!

WASHINGTON — Republicans say they aren't prepared to celebrate after the National Labor Relations Board dropped its high-profile lawsuit against Boeing on Friday. The Machinists union approved a four-year contract extension with Boeing this week, in which it agreed to withdraw allegations that the company built a nonunion plant in South Carolina to retaliate against past union strikes in Washington state. In return, Boeing promised to build the new version of its 737 airplane in Washington state. GOP Sen.

Paul Gibson

The holidays are here and so is the Mistletoe Bliss by Lazy Boy Brewing. This is a sweet, malty, somewhat boozy brown ale from Everett, Wash.

Whether you've been naughty or nice, this year give yourself a break from holiday shopping and find something special and unique. There are a lot of beers out there right now to help us celebrate this season.

Associated Press

If you’re an early riser, you may get to see a total eclipse of the moon on Saturday. The full moon will fall into a dark shadow in the hours just before dawn.

The northwestern U.S. gets a better view of this eclipse than the rest of the mainland states – that is, if you’re not fogged in.

Jonathan Klapel / KPLU

Anyone still camped out at the community college in Seattle this afternoon can be cited for trespassing and forcibly removed from the campus said Jill Wakefield, Chancellor of Seattle Community Colleges.

But she says she hopes it won’t have to come to that kind of confrontation with Occupy Seattle protesters at Seattle Central Community College. And, according to one Occupy resident, the protesters have been tearing down and cleaning up. They've even brought in a dumpster for the effort.

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Washington Governor Chris Gregoire appears to have given up hope of a balanced budget on her desk by Christmas. Instead, this week her budget director sent lawmakers a shorter wish list to get done before they adjourn for the holidays.

The protesters have gone home. So have many lawmakers.

But majority Democrats in the Washington legislature say they will be back next week with a goal. Cut the $1.4 billion budget shortfall down by, say, $500 million.

The secret list

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