Explosion in San Francisco injures one, cause unknown

Friday, August 19, 2005

An explosion from an underground utility chamber in downtown San Francisco severely injured a woman and shattered a window at a Ralph Lauren clothing store shortly after 10:00 a.m. Pacific time Friday. According to a caller to KCBS radio, a woman was engulfed in flames after the explosion triggered a fire in the store. The fire was quickly put out.

A bomb squad is currently investigating the explosion, and the cause has yet to be determined. One official said the explosion may have been caused by an electrical transformer. A witness described a fireball coming out of the side of the building

Pacific Gas & Electric Co. company spokesman Paul Moreno has stated that “there was no indication of a gas leak.” Moreno also described the aftermath of the blast. “The explosion did displace manhole covers — two round steel ones — and it also displaced a concrete cover as well,” Moreno said.

Some accounts have described a rift in the sidewalk caused by the explosion below.

Construction worker Tom Demartini, who was sitting in his truck outside the Ralph Lauren store, stated he saw the sidewalk rise up six or seven inches. “It sounded like a big poof, then there was a lot of smoke,” Demartini said. “One woman looked like she was badly burned.”

The burned woman was taken to the emergency room at St. Francis Hospital. Hospital spokeswoman Linda Gillespie had no immediate comment on her condition. Her name was not released.

Workers in a nearby office building described how the blast shook their buildings and that they thought it was an earthquake. According to one woman, the elevator in her building stopped.

Scores of police have evacuated buildings several blocks around the explosion. Kearny street between Sutter and Market has been closed to both vehicles and pedestrians.

Sea lion walks from beach into Pantai Inn in California

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

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Last Tuesday early morning, a sea lion walked from the beach into Pantai Inn in La Jolla, California. The animal was rescued by local animal rescue authorities. Wikinews took an interview from Shane Pappas, a General Manager of the inn.

((Wikinews)) At what time of day did the sea lion enter the Inn?

Shane Pappas: Surveillance footage shows that our sea lion friend made her way onto our property at approximately 5:45am on Tuesday morning. She waddled through our courtyard and climbed up onto one of our lounge chairs.

((WN)) How long did he stay in the Inn before he was moved out of the building?

Shane Pappas: The sea lion was not seen by our staff until about 6:30am. At that point my front desk agent Veronica made frantic calls to the authorities to find someone to come rescue the sea lion. By the time we got a hold of Sea World they were able to come and rescue her at around 9:45am. All told the sea lion was here for about four hours.

((WN)) What do you think attracted the animal? Was it the radio sound? Was it heard as far as the beach?

Shane Pappas: We’re not sure what attracted the sea lion. We like to think that it was the beauty and relaxation of our courtyard. In regards to the radio sound I’m not sure what you are referring to.

((WN)) Who and how transported the animal out of the building?

Shane Pappas: A gentleman named Bill who is a rescue worker with Sea World came out to rescue the pup. He asked if I would assist in the rescue which I was more than happy to do. It’s not every day that you get to rescue a sea lion.

((WN)) Where was the animal transported to?

Shane Pappas: The sea lion was loaded into a crate on a truck and transported back to Sea World. She will be kept there for six weeks so that she can be nursed back to health and returned to the wild.

Egyptian archaeologists announce discovery of marble statue and 132 new sites

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Zahi Hawass, Egypt’s pre-eminent archaeologist, and Secretary General of the The Supreme Council of Antiquities, has announced that a rare statue constructed of white marble whose features resemble Alexander the Great has been discovered in Egypt. Hawass also stated that there are satellite photographs identifying many archeological sites which may also reveal buried monuments.

Calliope Papacosta was leading the Greek archaeological excavation in Alexandria when the white marble statue was found.

“A ribbon around the head of the statue proves that it belongs to an important person for such ribbon was used only be[sic] rulers,” said Hawass, “The 80 cm long, 23 cm wide statue has been discovered eight meters deep under the earth surface.”

Farouk Hosni, Egypt’s Culture Minister, is supporting archaeological dig sites and has set into place laws restricting illegal digging in confirmed archaeological sites which may contain historical monuments. The monument photography project, National Authority for Remote Sensing, Space Sciences (NARRS) and Mubarak City for Scientific Research (MuCSAT) combined Satellites technology, aerial photography and ground laser to locate 132 sites which have not yet been excavated.

One of these sites is north of Lake Qarun in the Faiyum area, and another at Habu city. Archaeologists are presently being sent out by the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism to areas before construction and building excavations to preserve invaluable archaeological treasures. At the Faiyum site near Cairo artifacts dating to diverse time periods have been found amongst these, an awl for stitching leather, fishing tackle, weapons, jewellery, pottery, coins, sawfish, whale fossils, and a 3150 BC block portraying one of the two leaders named King Scorpion.

Meanwhile, in other archaeological news, Iran’s three salt mummies found in the Chehrabad Salt Mine in 1993 will be moved to a technologically advanced vacuum chamber display case in Zanjan for better preservation. These mummies or Salt Men have been dated as being from the Parthian 237 BCE – 224 CE and Sassanid era, 224 – 651 CE.

CyanogenMod: Open-source smartphone OS goes commercial

Thursday, September 19, 2013

File:CyanogenMod Cid.svg

The developers of CyanogenMod, an open source free Android-based operating system for smartphones, announced yesterday their incorporation following a successful venture capital campaign which netted the open-source project a US$7 million nest egg, and plan to roll out a simple installation app on Google Play for their Android firmware.

Android runs nearly 80% of new mobile devices; CyanogenMod operates on at least 7 or 8 million of those. CyanogenMod replaces the read-only-memory image in android devices which have been ‘rooted’ —control acquired of the device’s superuser account— allowing continuing development for, and backporting abilities of new generations of the operating system to, older devices.

Investor Mitch Lasky wrote on his blog “We believe that CM is poised to become one of the largest mobile operating systems in the world.” Benchmark Capital and Redpoint Ventures are part of the capital providers to form Cyanogen Inc.

“The only limitation we have right now is with the number of engineers and designers we currently have. As we hire more people and build this company, we’ll be able to work on so many cool things”, said Koushik ‘koush’ Dutta, who took questions alongside Steve ‘cyanogen’ Kondik and team social media manager Abhisek “ciwrl” Devkota in a Reddit Ask Me Anything event shortly after making the announcement on the CyanogenMod blog. The team of 17, including Boost co-founder Kirt McMaster as CEO, are in Palo Alto, California and Seattle.

Kondik says Cyanogen mod is named after him. “I’m terrible with names, so I just slapped ‘mod’ onto the end of my handle and ran with it”, he explained in the incorporation announcement.

An early question raised in the Reddit event concerned profit-making: “Monetization isn’t an immediate concern and our investors […] feel the same”, said Dutta, adding “Creating disruption in a multibilion dollar market is enough to make any investor raise their eyebrow.” This means CyanogenMod would continue to be free. Follow questions asked if the company was planning to release their own model of android device. “We certainly couldn’t take on the monumental task of building/testing hardware [right now]. Hardware would be one of many potential very long term paths we could take”, said Dutta.

The firm’s first announced step is to improve the process of installing the software on owner’s devices, which Kondik described as “hideous”. A new installer app is planned to be released “in the coming weeks” on Google Play. The installer app will not require rooting the device, instead installing by simply clicking a button.

A further step, broadly described without any details, is a project with an unnamed original equipment manufacturer (OEM). “We have a least one OEM partnership in the works, there will be an announcement next week regarding our plans there”, said Kondik. The team mentioned OEM licensing several times during the Q&A session on Reddit.

In addition to these corporate steps, there were questions regarding the roadmap for development of the ROM, which already has improvements regarding privacy and security over the native android loader. With “plenty of things in the product pipeline already” Dutta lists additional security features, AirPlay mirroring, screen recording, and Voice+ as upcoming. The mood throughout the event was jovial, with humourous questions such as “can you guys PLEASE release a CM build for my toaster? I’m not sure what model it is, but it’s white and I got it at Savers.” Kondik promised “Ship it to me and I’ll duct tape a G1 running CM to it”. Dutta said his “10 of your favorite lines of source code” are “The ones that worked when they shouldn’t have.”

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Wikinews interviews Jeff Jacobsen, creator of LisaMcPherson.org

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

On Sunday, Wikinews interviewed creator of memorial site LisaMcPherson.org, former Lisa McPherson Trust employee and long time Scientology critic Jeff Jacobsen.

LisaMcPherson.org is a memorial site created in 1997 containing information on her death and the resulting legal case against the Church of Scientology.

Lisa McPherson died in 1995 while in the care of the Church of Scientology. After a car accident, she became mentally unstable. Scientologists removed her from the hospital and placed her in the Introspection Rundown, she died 17 days later while still in care of the Church. She was used as an icon during Project Chanology, the protest of the Church of Scientology by Anonymous. Protesters were pictured with signs that said “Remember Lisa McPherson” and “Ask Scientology Why Lisa McPherson Died”, other protesters had posters with her picture on it.

Former US Speaker of the House Hastert planning to retire

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Republican officials announced today that Rep. Dennis Hastert of Illinois will be leaving the United States Congress when his present congressional term concludes at the end of next year.

Hastert has served in Illinois’ 14th district since 1987 and his time as Speaker makes him longest serving Republican Speaker in history. Party officials have scheduled a formal announcement of Hastert’s retirement for Friday, August 17.

Hastert’s decision has been expected since the Republicans lost the elections last November and he was removed as Speaker. For eight years, he’s been second in line of presidential succession behind only the vice-president.

The party officials who discussed his planned retirement did so on condition of anonymity because there had been no public announcement yet.

Colleges offering admission to displaced New Orleans students/LA-ND

See the discussion page for instructions on adding schools to this list and for an alphabetically arranged listing of schools.

Due to the damage by Hurricane Katrina and subsequent flooding, a number of colleges and universities in the New Orleans metropolitan area will not be able to hold classes for the fall 2005 semester. It is estimated that 75,000 to 100,000 students have been displaced. [1]. In response, institutions across the United States and Canada are offering late registration for displaced students so that their academic progress is not unduly delayed. Some are offering free or reduced admission to displaced students. At some universities, especially state universities, this offer is limited to residents of the area.

Contents

  • 1 Overview
  • 2 Louisiana
  • 3 Maine
  • 4 Maryland
  • 5 Massachusetts
  • 6 Michigan
  • 7 Minnesota
  • 8 Mississippi
  • 9 Missouri
  • 10 Montana
  • 11 Nebraska
  • 12 Nevada
  • 13 New Hampshire
  • 14 New Jersey
  • 15 New Mexico
  • 16 New York
  • 17 North Carolina
  • 18 North Dakota

Romania, 14th most attractive country for business relocation

Tuesday, February 8, 2005

Bucharest, Romania – According to the Economist Intelligence Unit, Romania was the 14th most preferred country in the world for foreign companies looking to relocate their activities. This confirms Romania’s growing attractiveness for foreign investment.

The study examined the conditions in sixty countries, and took into account nine categories of indices: geographical proximity, political and security risks, economic stability, legislation, taxation, labour costs and skills level, and infrastructure. The scores given to the countries ranged from 1 to 10, 10 being the highest. The final composite score was calculated as a weighted average of the scores of the nine indicators. Some indicators, such as labour costs, had more weight than others.

Romania’s final score was 7.08 points, edged out in Europe by only Bulgaria (7.08 points), Slovakia (7.12 points) and Czechia (7.26 points). Romania’s strengths lay in the workforce cost category, where it received a score of 9.49, and in the geographical proximity chapter, where is received 8.35 points. It also scored well in the categories of economic stability and political and security risks, with 7.2 points each. The country’s weaknesses were mainly in the infrastrucutre chapter, where it received just 4.6 points.

Romania is further expected to improve its score in the coming years, as the effects of its new 16% flat tax rate on personal income and corporate profit come into effect, and as the country joins the European Union in 2007.

The worldwide leader in attractiveness for business relocation was India, with 7.76 points, due mainly to very low labour costs, high skill levels and a stable legal system. India edged out China by a considerable margin, with China being ranked second, with 7.34 points. China lags behind India mainly due to its lack of a well-developed legislative system.

Surprisingly, wealthy countries such as Japan, Norway and Denmark ranked very low, mainly due to their very high cost of labour.

Cricket: Australia vs India 3rd test – Day 1

Thursday, January 17, 2008

The third Test between Australia and India commenced on Wednesday at the WACA in Perth.

India won the toss, and Indian captain Anil Kumble elected to bat. India quickly made a half century in nine overs. Shortly after, the first wicket fell with Virender Sehwag caught behind by Adam Gilchrist for 29 runs. About half an hour before lunch with three more overs, the next wicket fell when Gilchrist also caught Wasim Jaffer.

India were 2/74 at lunch, and played well during the afternoon, losing no wickets. Rahul Dravid was dropped on 11 runs by Michael Clarke, and went on to share a partnership of 139 runs with Sachin Tendulkar as India reached 2/177 at tea.

In the last session India put on 120 runs, losing four wickets, including two just before stumps. Brett Lee trapped lbw Tendulkar (71), while Sourav Ganguly fell for just nine runs soon afterwards. Dravid reached 93 runs before being caught by Ricky Ponting, and V. V. S. Laxman was dismissed for 27 runs shortly before the close of play. India finished the day on 6/297.

Brett Lee was the leading wicket taker, tallying 3 wickets.

Australia lead the four match Test series 2-0, after a controversial second Test prompting India to threaten to pull out of the tour.