Laird Harrison

Facebook Unveils Android ‘Home’

“We’re not building a phone, and we’re not building an operating system,” said Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Instead, the company is launching “a family of apps” for the Android smartphone operating system. The new Home displays images from friends on the lock screen of an Android phone so that as soon as you turn it … Continue reading Facebook Unveils Android ‘Home’ →

Gamers Mourn as LucasArts Gets Zapped

For fans of such LucasArts games as “Star Wars,” the empire struck back on Wednesday — the Disney empire, that is. Reports spread rapidly that LucasArts, based in San Francisco’s Presidio, had ceased production of games, laying off 150 people, according to multiple sources. Game studio LucasArts is part of Lucasfilm, which Disney bought from … Continue reading Gamers Mourn as LucasArts Gets Zapped →

(Document) More Bay Bridge Parts to be Examined

How much of the new Bay Bridge span is faulty? Eager to get an answer to that question, investigators will scrutinize every single part supplied by Dyson Corp, Bay Bridge spokesman Andrew Gordon told KQED’s Tara Siler. The Ohio company made threaded rods (also called bolts) that snapped when tightened last month, and also supplied … Continue reading (Document) More Bay Bridge Parts to be Examined →

(Video) Willits Tree Sitters Removed and Arrested in Highway 101 Bypass Protest

Warbler has come to earth. Police arrested the 24-year-old tree sitter, whose real name is Amanda Senseman, on Tuesday morning, bringing an end to her two-month act of civil disobedience aimed at stopping a Highway 101 bypass construction near Willits. A supporter said police arrested two other tree sitters as well, reportedly after firing a … Continue reading (Video) Willits Tree Sitters Removed and Arrested in Highway 101 Bypass Protest →

Oakland’s Oikos University Struggles with Massacre Anniversary

“We’re getting a lot of calls,” said the receptionist at Oikos University on Monday, the day before the anniversary of the horror. “But we would like to stay peaceful and quiet.” On April 2, 2012, for reasons that might never be clear, a gunman shot 10 people, killing seven of them in and around the … Continue reading Oakland’s Oikos University Struggles with Massacre Anniversary →

San Francisco Transbay Terminal Design May Change

“Light and sound” were going to “play on the graceful glass structure” of the Transbay Terminal being rebuilt in downtown San Francisco, according to the original plans. Artists’ renderings show an undulating glass shell over the planned transit hub. But this week, as project organizers celebrated the groundbreaking for a neighboring glass tower, they also … Continue reading San Francisco Transbay Terminal Design May Change →

Negotiations Resume with Striking San Francisco Symphony Musicians

Management is meeting once again with striking San Francisco Symphony musicians, the Symphony announced on Friday. Negotiations resumed this morning and are expected to continue all weekend with help from a federal mediator. “We’re hopeful we can continue to work hard toward a solution and have our very talented and gifted musicians back on stage … Continue reading Negotiations Resume with Striking San Francisco Symphony Musicians →

California’s Jobless Rate Dips… But It’s Way Worse Than North Dakota’s

Quick, what is California doing as well as Mississippi and Nevada but worse than all the other states? As you might have guessed from the headline of this post, the answer is “hire people.” In February, the Golden State’s jobless rate drifted down to 9.6 percent in preliminary estimates. It’s only a modest drop from … Continue reading California’s Jobless Rate Dips… But It’s Way Worse Than North Dakota’s →

Inmates’ Attorneys Battle California Governor Over Prison Oversight

by Don Thompson, Associated Press SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A federal judge on Wednesday struggled with how to gauge whether conditions for mentally ill inmates in California prisons have improved enough under federal oversight to return control of the facilities to the state, as Gov. Jerry Brown is seeking. Lawyers for California argued in court … Continue reading Inmates’ Attorneys Battle California Governor Over Prison Oversight →

San Francisco Chronicle Launches Paywall; Reporters Launch Twitter Strike

You can blame Craigslist or Google or blogs like this one. However you look at it, the Internet has disrupted the newspaper business. And the latest changes at the San Francisco Chronicle show that the upheaval isn’t over. Over the weekend, the newspaper announced it will charge readers who want to read some of its … Continue reading San Francisco Chronicle Launches Paywall; Reporters Launch Twitter Strike →

Same-Sex Marriage: 5 Possible Outcomes From the Supreme Court Hearings

To us non lawyers it looks pretty simple: either gay people can legally marry each other or they can't. But as the Supreme Court prepares to rule on California's Proposition 8, the justices will weigh multiple options. Some decisions would settle the question throughout the country for the foreseeable future. Some could leave it dangling for years to come. The high court will hear arguments on the case on Tuesday, with a decision expected in June. To start with, the court isn't just taking on Prop. 8, the California constitutional amendment that banned same-sex marriage. It's also tackling the Defense of Marriage Act, the federal law that denies federal benefits of marriage to  same-sex couples. The court will hear arguments on the DOMA on Wednesday. And the two decisions are intertwined. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l3FfWDT97ug&hl=en_US&version=3&rel=0]

Teen Plays On Stage at Berkeley Rep

They start young in Berkeley. As part of Berkeley Repertory Theatre’s 11th annual Teen One-Acts Festival, two winning teens will premiere their plays. The plays will take stage at the theater’s new Osher Studio in productions directed, designed, and performed entirely by local high-school students. The winners for 2013 are 17-year-old Frances Maples of Lafayette, … Continue reading Teen Plays On Stage at Berkeley Rep →

Oakland City Council Members Face ‘Interference’ Charges

You can call your city council member because your garbage didn’t get picked up, or because your basement is flooding in a storm. But don’t ask for help with your parking ticket, let alone a city job. You can get the council member in big trouble. Such trouble emerged on Thursday when City Auditor Courtney … Continue reading Oakland City Council Members Face ‘Interference’ Charges →

Poll Finds Strong Gun Control Support in California

California has some of the strictest gun control laws in the nation. Asked if they’d like some more, Californians are telling pollsters, “Bring it on.” A narrow majority, 51 percent, said it’s more important to protect people from guns than to protect the rights of gun owners, according to a poll released on Friday by … Continue reading Poll Finds Strong Gun Control Support in California →