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Women’s big-wave surfing makes a splash with WickrX Super Sessions

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PRINCETON-BY-THE-SEA, California — The conditions weren’t epic, at least by the standards of what is perhaps big-wave surfing‘s most legendary break. The spectators were few on Wednesday just off the coast of this hamlet about 20 miles south of San Francisco. But the event? The event was a resounding success

Twelve of the world’s top female big-wave surfers — many of them meeting for the first time — descended on the break known as Mavericks on Wednesday for several hours of charging. But it wasn’t just a one-day contest. It was the culmination of a six-week, first-of-its kind production called the WickrX Super Sessions. Its goal? Simple: Raise the profile of women’s big-wave surfing, which is greatly overshadowed by the male version of the sport in attention, prize money and coverage Read more…

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Flickr Removes Creative Commons Images From Its Wall Art Program Following Backlash

flickr-wall-art Last month, Flickr expanded its Wall Art print service to include images from the photo-sharing site’s professional artists as well as images licensed for commercial use through Creative Commons. The project was originally intended to allow photographers profit from the sale of images made into prints, but it generated controversy when users realized that Yahoo (Flickr’s owner)… Read More

Bay Area public defenders rally behind ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement

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Public defenders across the San Francisco Bay Area added their voice to protests that have swept the country in the wake of a string of police killings of unarmed black men on Thursday with several simultaneous rallies at local court houses.

Members of the Public Defenders Offices of San Francisco, Alameda, Contra Costa, Santa Clara and Solano counties spent their lunch breaks protesting on the steps of judicial buildings in each county as a show of solidarity with the marches and demonstrations that have drawn thousands in the Bay Area in past weeks

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Satellite Captures Glowing Plants From Space

sciencehabit writes About 1% of the light that strikes plants is re-emitted as a faint, fluorescent glow—a measure of photosynthetic activity. Today, scientists released a map of this glow as measured by the Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2, a NASA satellite launched in July with the goal of mapping the net amount of carbon in the atmosphere. The map reveals that tropical rainforests near the equator are actively sucking up carbon, while the Corn Belt in the eastern United States, near the end of its growing season, is also a sink. Higher resolution fluorescence mapping could one day be used to help assess crop yields and how they respond to drought and heat in a changing climate.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Massive downtown LA inferno labeled arson

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LOS ANGELES — The massive inferno that ripped through an apartment complex under construction in downtown, melted signs on an adjacent freeway and blew out the windows of nearby buildings has been classified as arson by local and federal investigators.

The Dec. 8 blaze at the seven-story Da Vinci apartment complex caused between $20 million and $30 million in damage, Erik Scott, a public information officer with the Los Angeles Fire Department, said on Twitter

Investigators from @LAFD & #ATF determine the massive Dec. 8th #DTLAfire was arson. $20-$30 million in damagepic.twitter.com/B44yOC41My

— Erik Scott (@PIOErikScott) December 19, 2014 Read more…

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Mobile Commerce Consolidation As Mozido Takes Majority Stake In CorFire

corfire Just days after Dutch digital commerce provider Adyen announced a $250 million round of funding, another heavily capitalised player in the space has made an acquisition to up its game. Mozido, a mobile commerce specialist that raised $185 million in October 2014 after raising $103 million in May, has taken a majority stake in CorFire, another mobile commerce startup that focuses on… Read More

Neurence’s Cloud Platform Gives Wearables Eyes That Can See And Ears That Can Hear

Neurence U.K. startup Neurence, which has previously released two proof-of-concept apps showcasing its augmented reality tech, called Taggar and Tag Me, has now launched its long term platform play: a machine learning cloud platform for object recognition which it’s hoping will underpin the next wave of search queries as computing becomes increasingly immersed in the physical world — thanks… Read More

Congress blocks feds from meddling with medical marijuana

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In Congress, it’s rare for a spending bill to move forward without a deluge of last-minute additions for politicians’ pet projects.

This year’s $1.1 trillion spending bill, signed yesterday by President Obama, is no different.

But while an amendment to water down banking regulations is drawing scrutiny, two congressmen from California quietly inserted wording that removes funding for the Department of Justice and the Drug Enforcement Administration to interfere with states where medical marijuana is legal.

Medical Marijuana Bill

It’s the first legislation enacted by Congress that curtails the government’s ability to enforce penalties or intrude on states that permit medical marijuana, a drug that is still considered by federal regulators to be as dangerous as heroin and LSD. Read more…

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Ending The Invisibility Of Homelessness

205736624_153dbd3d20_o The lack of affordable, safe, and supportive housing is a scourge on society. It costs $90K to maintain a human being on the streets for a year, compared to $18K to provide supportive housing to a previously homeless person. Over the last 10 years, an influx of 75,000 people have moved to San Francisco, while only 17,000 new housing units have been built. We can end chronic homelessness by 2020… Read More

Ending The Invisibility Of Homelessness

205736624_153dbd3d20_o The lack of affordable, safe, and supportive housing is a scourge on society. It costs $90K to maintain a human being on the streets for a year, compared to $18K to provide supportive housing to a previously homeless person. Over the last 10 years, an influx of 75,000 people have moved to San Francisco, while only 17,000 new housing units have been built. We can end chronic homelessness by 2020… Read More