Big Blog Meetup Taking Place at Cafe Rozella – Wednesday (April 22nd) at 5:30 p.m.

April 17th, 2009 Ricardo Posted in cafe rozella, Technology, White Center, White Center news Comments Off on Big Blog Meetup Taking Place at Cafe Rozella – Wednesday (April 22nd) at 5:30 p.m.

Come and meet PI Journalist and social media maven, Monica Guzman and other members of the BigBlog to discuss the state of journalism at Cafe Rozella this Wednesday (April 22nd) at 5:30 p.m.  Event is free.  We are located at 9434 Delridge Way S.W.  (just north of Roxbury – next to Center Tool Rental).  Meet some great people and journalists.

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Sex or Internet: Which Would You Give Up?

December 13th, 2008 Ricardo Posted in Technology Comments Off on Sex or Internet: Which Would You Give Up?

A new Harris Survey asks the question, which would you forgo first, sex or internet access.   According to the New York Times:

According to the study, 46 percent of women and 30 percent of men would opt to forgo sex for two weeks instead of giving up access to their precious Internet for the same period.

More broadly, those surveyed said access to the Internet ranked highest among the discretionary spending items they could not live without. Cable television, dining out, shopping for clothes and gym memberships followed in declining importance.

Well, I for one would easily give up TV over internet access.  As for sex, well, that’s a tougher call.

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Times keep getting tougher for Traditional Newspapers

December 8th, 2008 Ricardo Posted in Businesses, Miscellaneous, Technology, White Center news 2 Comments »

As I write this post, the venerable Chicago Tribune and the Lost Angeles Times teeter on bankruptcy.  The New York Times Company (NYT) plans to borrow up to $225M against its mid-Manhattan headquarters building to ease a potential cash flow squeeze. The NYT company has over $1B in debt. Both Seattle papers, The Seattle Times and the Post-Intelligencer, are announcing that the “dead tree edition” will be smaller in size, and presumably in content.  All of the foregoing papers, and many others, have already made painful cuts to their staffs and likely will continue to make further cuts.  Despite these losses, the online versions of all of these newspapers are enjoying more views than ever.  There is no shortage of people wanting to read the news, it just so happens that online traditional media have not found a business model that monetizes these online eyeballs.

I for one, read far more newspapers now than I ever did when you had to buy your newspaper in print form.  Paradoxical.  I leave it to others to put forth the reasons and why-fors of this financial crisis in traditional media.  But one thing I would add, traditional media have been very slow to adapt to changing technologies.  As early as the mid-90s anyone with any sense knew that the future lay online.  Yet it took well over a decade for most newspapers to recognize the need for an online presence.  Even then, they still failed to fully comprehend the trends in social media and the net.  The irony is that you can read the NY Times technology section to catch up on web trends and wonder if the editor is also reading the same section.  I suspect that there is a means vs. substance disconnect in journalists, especially the old school types.   Whatever it is, they better catch one quick cause they are dying a slow and painful death.

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Puget Sound Off contest extended for media-making youth

October 19th, 2008 Tracy Posted in Technology Comments Off on Puget Sound Off contest extended for media-making youth

Know kids/teens who’d like to make media to encourage others to speak out, stand up, get involved? The deadline’s just been extended for the Puget Sound Off contest; read about it here, and pass the word to any teachers/youth groups/kids/teens you know you might be interested. (Prizes!) Also, there’s a related forum at UW’s Kane Hall on October 30th, 6:30 pm, about young people, “citizen journalism,” and technology – I’m honored to have been invited to be on the panel, along with folks from the Seattle Times, UW, The Vera Project, Reel Grrls, Youth Media Institute, YMCA, and more (teen participants too); everybody’s welcome – hope to see you there.

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Notes from Cafe Rozella: Linux and Windows

October 15th, 2008 Ricardo Posted in Sustainability, Technology, White Center 3 Comments »

One of the unknown duties of running an independent cafe is maintaining a wireless network.  Unlike Starbucks, we have no IT department to turn to when we have computer problems.  We have to learn to manage our networks much as we do the espresso machines.  Not that I mind, I love tinkering in the bowels of these neat machines. In addition to maintaining the WiFi, we also keep a terminal for use by the community.  (So stop by if you need to check your email.)

Like nearly everyone else, we were running our computers on the Microsoft Windows operating system.  About two years ago one of our machines bit the dust.  In an effort to salvage what I could of the computer’s remains, I switched out some parts and decided to load the Linux operating system on the old pc.  Techy customers had told me that Linux consumed much less resources and was much more reliable.   I took the plunge and loaded the Mandrake version of Linux on our public PC.  The system worked great!  Reliable and, unlike Windows, it never crashed.

Next I tried Linux Ubuntu on one of my pcs.  I was hooked.  I liked it so much that I had the Ubuntu folks send me a bunch of disks (they normally run about $2)  and I distributed them to interested customers.  In the interim I became much more adept at Linux and its particular foibles (some of which can be maddening).  I have to say, I am a convert.  Not only can you do anything on Linux that  you would on Windows — it’s all FREE and more reliable.

So, if you are interested in dipping your toe in the open source operating system world, try out Linux.  It will load on top of Windows so you can play with it without actually burning it onto your hard drive.  I recommend Ubuntu but there are other very user friendly interfaces.  And they are almost all Free.  So give it a whirl and maybe you won’t have to shell out $500 for an operating system next time you need to upgrade.

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Tech in the midst of nature

October 11th, 2008 Tracy Posted in Education, Parks, Technology Comments Off on Tech in the midst of nature

Old news to many, perhaps, but we hadn’t really heard a lot about the Technology Access Foundation‘s plans for a learning center in Lakewood Park until a conversation with Friends of Hicks Lake’s Dick Thurnau, following up on some other issues he had surfaced recently, both at the North Highline Unincorporated Area Council meeting and during the annual Hicks Lake cleanup (more later on what he and I discussed). His group enthusiastically supports this plan, which you can read all about on the TAF website. TAF is still in the midst of fundraising and hoping now to break ground in summer of next year. The TAF site says that as of this past May they’d raised about a third of the $15 million they need; we’ll check in with them soon to see where things stand now.

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Notes from Cafe Rozella

September 17th, 2008 Ricardo Posted in Arts, Beverages, Technology, White Center Comments Off on Notes from Cafe Rozella

Tall Latte at Half-Price – Rush Hour Special 6:00 a.m. to 7:30 a.m.\

Weary commuters, we know what a grind it is to get in your car and join the mad rush to that beloved job. So Cafe Rozella wants to make your commute a little easier. Pull up to Cafe Rozella, jump out of your car and get a tall latte for half the usual price! Just come in before 7:30 am and say, “I want my commuter special!” While supplies last.
Keep up on current affairs and latest White Center developments at the WC blog:

Freebie 2.0 download of the day. If you are like me, as you work at your computer, either on the web or while writing, you run into stuff that you want to save for later or merely want to have around for later use (like a software key, an address or a phone number). If you use gmail, you could email it to yourself but that has its limits. Well there is a tremendous freeware download called Evernote that allows you to record, save, copy and generally memorialize anything on your PC and best of all it syncs with all your computers so if you save something on your laptop while surfing at Cafe Rozella it will be in your Evernote clipboard in your home desktop. The download can be found at: Evernote download.

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Upcoming Events

La Vida Nueva – Zapotec women’s weaving collective visits Seattle
Monday, September 29th 6pm – 9pm
(9th House: for more info 206.323.4483 or )
Tuesday, September 30th 3pm – 9pm
(Café Rozella: 9434 Delridge Way SW 206.763.5805


La Vida Nueva is a women’s weaving collective in Teotitlan del Valle , Oaxaca Mexico . These Zapotec artisans are continuing their traditional methods of dying, spinning, and weaving wool tapetes (rugs) all by hand. Their work and homeland are internationally acclaimed for the quality of weaving.
Pastora Gutierrez will be representing the 14 women of the collective on this 2008 West Coast Tour. Each stop is an opportunity to create cultural ties with the Zapotec women, as well as learning about the work and community of their cooperative. All the women of La Vida Nueva are independently supporting themselves and their children through the work of the collective.
There are two opportunities in Seattle to meet Pastora and her friend and translator Juanita Rodriguez. These are also opportunities to purchase heirloom quality traditional Zapotec tapetes. This annual selling tour is the main source of income for La Vida Nueva.
La Vida Nueva – la colectividad que teje de las mujeres de Zapotec visita Seattle
Lunes, 29 de septiembre de 6 P.M. – 9pm
(residencia privada: para más Info 206.323.4483 o

Martes 30 de septiembre de 3 P.M. – 9pm
(Café Rozella: 9434 Delridge Way SW 206.763.5805 )
La Vida Nueva es una colectividad que teje de las mujeres en el del Valle, Oaxaca México de Teotitlan. Estos artesanos de Zapotec están continuando sus métodos tradicionales de teňido, de giro, y de tapetes de las lanas que tejen todas a mano. Su trabajo y patria internacionalmente se aclaman para la calidad de tejer.
Pastora Gutiérrez representará a las 14 mujeres de la colectividad en este viaje 2008 de la costa oeste. Cada parada es una oportunidad de crear lazos culturales con las mujeres de Zapotec, así como el aprendizaje sobre el trabajo y la comunidad de su cooperativa. Todas las mujeres del La Vida Nueva se están apoyando independientemente y a sus niños a través del trabajo de la colectividad.
Hay dos oportunidades en Seattle de resolver Pastora y su amigo y traductor Juanita Rodriguez. Éstas son también oportunidades de comprar los tapetes tradicionales de Zapotec de la calidad de la herencia. Esta publicación anual que vende viaje es la fuente de ingresos principal para el La Vida Nueva.
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Coming to a school near you: Student info, online

September 11th, 2008 Tracy Posted in Online, Schools, Technology, White Center news Comments Off on Coming to a school near you: Student info, online

From the Highline School District eHighlights blog: Three schools (none in White Center, though) are now using the district’s new online info system eSIS – and by next school year, all schools in the district are expected to be plugged into it. Read more here; also check out several other new posts on eHighlights, including a $10,000 grant for the New Start High School library. Meantime, watch White Center Now later today for our interview with Mount View Elementary’s new principal, following his first week on the job.

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This year’s Geocache Cup starts @ Lakewood Park!

August 18th, 2008 Tracy Posted in Fun, Technology, White Center news 3 Comments »

Happened onto this while chasing something else: The Technology Access Foundation‘s annual Geocache Cup — described by TAF as a “high-tech treasure hunt” — will start at White Center’s Lakewood Park. The Geocache Cup is set for 1-6 pm Sept. 27; registration is open NOW for participants and sponsors – here’s the place to start. If you’re not familiar with TAF, its mission includes “prepar(ing) underserved children of color for higher education and professional success.”

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