Friday, January 20, 2006
Five Things You Need to Know for Friday, January 20, 2006
Five Things Wayback Machine: Michigan Unemployment Rate Climbs for December, Congress Could Put More Local Food Into Schools, Darko Milicic Myths ... Debunked?, U-M research may cut fuel cell costs, AAA to Sponsor Roush NASCAR Vehicle
Detroit and the Future of Rapid Transportation
The Metroit Times has a fascinating feature on Marsden Burger and the high-tech transit future he envisioned for the city of Detroit. The article explores personal rapid transportation solutions (PRT) as they could apply to Detroit and other cities.
Innovative Transportation Technologies web site
Advanced Transit Association web site
Sounding Our Horn
History buffs (and those who like mind-boggling photos) will not want to miss our latest post to Michigan in Pictures.
If you've been missing our Absolute Michigan News Blog, you've been missing some links to great posts in Michigan blogs that Tami digs up Mondays through Thursdays. Some of this week's favorites: A four-year-old could do Mason's job (Detroit Bad Boys), Au Sable Apocalypse (Find The River) and Demolition Means Progress (dETROITfUNK) (demolition of the Sanders building, part of the Motown Office).
Michigan in Pictures Photo Blog
Granholm to Announce Scholarship Changes in State of the State
The Detroit Free Press reports that Gov. Jennifer Granholm is expected to announce additional funds for college students in her State of the State speech Wednesday night. The governor and Senate have a plan to revamp the Michigan Merit Scholarship to increase the total money for students to $4,000 (currently $2,500), with half given during their first 2 years of college and the rest afterward.
MCWT Offers Scholarships for Female Technology Students
MITECHNEWS.COM reports that up to $20,000 in scholarships and stipends for laptops are available for female senior high school and college candidates pursuing technology education courtesy the Michigan Council of Women in Technology Foundation. In addition to its scholarships, MCWT Foundation holds an annual technology camp at Lawrence Tech where 4th-7th grade girls design web pages, take apart computers, build and program robots, and learn about digital photography.
Visit Michigan Council of Women in Technology for scholarship information & applications
State Broadband Authority Under Attack
The Detroit News reports that Republican legislative leaders, angered at the $10 million loss piled up by the Michigan Broadband Development Authority, are seeking to terminate the agency by the end of the month. CEO Bob Filka said the agency has $17 million to lend to companies to bring high-speed Internet to remote areas of the state that don't have access.
Thursday, January 19, 2006
Five Things You Need to Know for Thursday, January 19, 2006
Fantasy Island: The Tip of the Iceberg: Freshwater Fantasy?, Frank Lloyd Wright Influenced Snowflake Motel: Architectural Fantasy?, Saunders: Pistons not too much different from Hawks: "Making them Feel Better About Themselves" Fantasy?.
Levin Calls for Apollo Class Program to Help Michigan Manufacturers
The Lansing State Journal reports that Sen. Carl Levin urged Congress to pursue "an Apollo-type program" on Wednesday to help the manufacturing sector in Michigan battle a loss of jobs overseas. Levin said a series of steps would be needed to help deal with the nation's loss of about 3 million manufacturing jobs since the middle of 2000 including changes to the tax code, help on rising health care costs, targeting foreign currency manipulation and incentives for automakers to build advanced hybrid and diesel engines and hydrogen fuel cells.
Lions Hire Relative Unknown as Head Coach
The Detroit Free Press reports that the Detroit Lions have hired Rod Marinelli as their new head coach. Marinelli was the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' assistant head coach and defensive line coach and was selected over former Saints coach Jim Haslett, Steeler line coac Russ Grimm and a number of other candidates. Of interest is the fact that he has never been a coordinator or head coach at any level.
Also see DREW SHARP: Rod who? Lions settle for third best in the Freep
And then there's Marinelli's hire is like Mornhinweg's in the Detroit News
Head south for Marinelli, Lions Finalizing Deal in the Tampa Tribune
Michigan Internet ... by the Pixel
The Great Lakes IT Report had news of Rochester Internet service provider Enterprise Expectation Systems' launch of TopMichiganWebsites.com. The page is modeled after the successful UK based Million Dollar Homepage (minus porn ads). EES will also donate up to 20% of proceeds to Michigan nonprofits and are seeking requests for funding.
Also see The million-dollar student from the BBC
Michigan Unemployment Falls in 2005, Rises for Last Month
The Detroit Free Press reports that Michigan's 6.8% average annual unemployment rate for 2005 showed a decline of 0.3 percentage points from 2004's annual rate of 7.1%. Overall, the state lost 24,000 jobs in 2005. The Department of Labor and Economic Growth reported Wednesday that the Michigan jobless rate rose 0.1 percentage point to 6.7% (still above the national rate of 4.9%).
Update on the West Michigan Real Estate Market
WZZM TV-13 Grand Rapids reports that real estate analysts say there is a buyers market in West Michigan with plenty of new homes up for sale. It's a trend that began last year. The home builders association of Grand Rapids says housing starts fell by 6% between 2004 and 2005. Prices have outpaced inflation in West Michigan, meaning homeowners are getting their money's worth out of their houses.
18 januari 2006 by ypsi~dixit
Y. writes: At tonight's Washtenaw County Historical Society board meeting, one board member donated to the Museum a bagful of goodies. These included vintage newspaper pages and an elaborately framed Lodi Township German-language birth certificate, replete with elaborate decorations. I think it was a birth certificate, anyways.
Ok Go. A Million Ways to be Cruel by The True Mix
The True Mix writes: I hope everyone's seen this already. It's only been posted everywhere in the past six months to a year (I have no clue as to how long this video has been online).
Millen gets his man by Northern Michigan Detroit Sports Blog
The Leelanau Sports Guy writes: In what would be a shock to just about everyone I know, the Lions are reportedly going to announce the signing of Tampa Bay assistant head coach/defensive line coach Rod Marinelli as head coach. He has been with the Buccaneers the last 10 seasons. He has never been a head coach at any level.
Au Sable Apocalypse by Find The River
Find The River writes: In the minds of many anglers (most famously Norman Maclean), there is considerable overlap between religion and fly fishing. From the union of these two spheres comes a number of good things: acts of stewardship, for instance, or stories that others find moving and inspiring. Other results can be just plain odd. This is a case of the latter.
A four-year-old could do Mason's job by Detroit Bad Boys
Detroit Bad Boys writes: I'm guessing most of you missed Monday afternoon's game against the Celtics. Well, it was Martin Luther Kids, Jr. Kids Day, which meant that over a hundred kids had the chance to shadow Pistons and Palace employees to see what it's like to work for a basketball team.
Finally, something to use that spare engine for by South of 8 Mile
South of 8 Mile writes: I want one of these!
Wednesday, January 18, 2006
Articles of Interest 1-18-06 by "That's Saul, folks"
"That's Saul, folks" writes: Jobs, jobs, jobs. Please Governor, stick to the crisis at hand. Living in a state of denial, trying to find other issues to talk about, your far fetched "connect the dots" politics (see Toyota below) may distract some...but we need leadership.
Is Michigan's economy too tied to the auto industry? What can Michigan do to boost its economy? by The Cadillac News
Cadillac News writes: "The tourist industry is dependent upon oil and the price of gasoline keeps going higher and higher. There needs to be a regulatory board established by the U.S. government to determine what is sufficient profit (to make from selling oil). We have to undercut the enormous profits these oil companies are making so we can bring the price of gasoline down and spur more tourism."
- Linda Farris, Cadillac
First Impressions Count in Website Design by WebSiteOptimization.com
WebSiteOptimization.com writes: Web users form first impressions of web pages in as little as 50 miliseconds (1/20th of a second), according to Canadian researchers. In the blink of an eye, web surfers make nearly instantaneous judgments of a web site's "visual appeal." Through the "halo effect" first impressions can color subsequent judgments of perceived credibility, usability, and ultimately influence our purchasing decisions. Creating a fast-loading, visually appealing site can help websites succeed.
REPORT: TOXIC CHEMICALS INSIDE CARS by GLRC
GLRC writes: A new study by an environmental group says there are high concentrations of toxic chemicals called PBDE's and phthalates inside many cars. The Ecology Center is calling for the chemicals to be phased out.
Five Things You Need to Know for Wednesday, January 18, 2006
Two cool things we found while we were supposed to be working: Ideas from/about Michigan at Since Sliced Bread, TC Record-Eagle's Evolving Know Your Rights - An explanation of the Bill of Rights.
Michigan Legislator's Attendence Records
The Detroit Free Press has a feature that looks at the worst attendence (and best - 17 had perfect records) in the Michigan House and Michigan Senate. Jack McHugh, a legislative analyst and manager of MichiganVotes.org cautions against making assumptions about the voting records. McHugh said it appears that the number of legislators who missed dozens of votes a year is on the decline, at least in part because of how easy it has become for voters -- and political opponents -- to access voting information. Legislators tend to miss more votes during election years, when they tend to spend a lot of time campaigning for re-election or for another office.
Funding for IT, Life Sciences & Alternative Energy Companies
MITECHNEWS.COM reports that the 2006 Michigan Growth Capital Symposium issued a call Monday for applications to pitch hundreds of potential investors at the 25th anniversary Symposium in May. Companies in the information technology, life sciences and alternative energy industries may apply.
Michigan Growth Capital Symposium web site
Lansing Area Looks to Build Upon the Arts
The Lansing City Pulse reports on the state of the arts in the greater Lansing area - hot enough for new Mayor Virg Bernero to devote one of his six transition task forces to the arts, culture, entertainment and tourism. This is an interesting and very detailed look at myriad of issues in mid-Michigan including branding, communication challenges and local & regional arts efforts.
Seldom Blues Is Freep Restaurant Choice
The Detroit Free Press has named Seldom Blues jazz and supper club its 2006 Restaurant of the Year. The article has a nice photo gallery and some great recipes from Seldom Blues chef Jake Abraham including Crab and Brie Gratin, Braised Beef Short Ribs and Turtle Cheesecake.
Seldom Blues Jazz & Supper Club web site
Wanted: Ice to Break
The Mining Journal reports that there hasn't been any ice for the US Coast Guard cutter Mackinaw to break. The cutter is in its final season of icebreaking and shipping lanes have remained open during an unusually mild early winter. As always with the Mining Journal, the photo is great and the article will be gone in 2 weeks!
Tuesday, January 17, 2006
Tuesday, January 17th, 2006 by detroitblog
detroitblog writes: Today's Scan of the Week is in acknowledgement of the demolition of the Donovan/Sanders buildings, otherwise known as the Motown Building or the Motown Complex.....
The first scan is a note jotted in late-1966 by Marvin to his wife Anna, who happened to be Berry Gordy's sister....
...the second item, a receipt for the insurance coverage and cold storage of Anna Gaye's recently purchased fur. Not just any old fur, but a "Yellow Coat with Lynx Tuxedo Collar and Cuffs."
From the "I'm sure their parents are proud" section...by Northern Michigan Detroit Sports Blog
Leelanau Sports Guy writes: Two recent Michigan graduates captured the "World Series of Beer Pong" title in Las Vegas. Jason Coben and Nick Velissaris will split a $10,000 grand prize.
American Life in Poetry: Column 042 by The Poetry Factory
Ted Kooser, U.S. Poet Laureate writes: Here is a poem by David Bengtson, a Minnesotan, about the simple pleasure of walking through deep snow to the mailbox to see what's arrived. But, of course, the pleasure is not only in picking up the mail with its surprises, but in the complete experience--being fully alive to the clean cold air and the sound of the wind around the mailbox door.
17 januari 2006 by ypsi~dixit
Y. writes: A CHAT with a fellor bus-biker at the downtown Ypsi bus stop revealed that downtown Ann Arbor will be shut down from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. today, in order for a funeral procession for local firefighter Amy Schnearle-Pennywitt, who was killed on I-94 during the recent icy morning.
Chocolate City by Yellow Dog
Yellow Dog writes: Mayor Nagin of N'Orleans calls for the city to be a Chocolate City. He he. And when they come to march on you, tell them tto bring their James Brown passes!
Hey, Let's Form a Ski Club
David Nielsen writes:: Picabo Street wishes everyone would just relax about Bode Miller. After all, it's not like he's the first one to ski while he was drunk...
She says Miller is caught in the middle of an enduring tug-of-war between skiing's free-spirited heritage, and the buttoned-down, conservative attitudes of the Olympics.
"Think about Ishpeming, Michigan, and the beginning of skiing in America ... look at the whole premise," said Street, calling from her hometown in Ketchum, Idaho. "In Ishpeming, it was a shot of schnapps and a run, and a shot of schnapps and another run. Then four or five shots of schnapps later, it was, 'Hey, we should form a ski club ..."
Space Travelers Tangled by Red Tape? by Red Tape Blog
Red Tape writes: "Thinking of spending that next vacation on the moon or Mars or circling the Earth? Before liftoff, there's a list of things the would-be 'space flight participant' should know.
"More than 120 pages of proposed rules, released by the government Thursday, regulate the future of space tourism. This don't-forget list touches on everything from passenger medical standards to preflight training for the crew."
ambient gallery by detroitarts
detroitarts writes: Coinciding with the spirits of celebrating the city of Detroit with the auto show and also the super bowl coming...Ambient Gallery has a show up featuring Darcel Deneau's Detroit landscapes.
How to send large files to friends by PC Mike's E-Journal
Mike Wendland writes: Ever had your Internet Service Provider refuse to let you send a file to someone via e-mail?
It happens a lot these days, with strict limits on file sizes that can be uploaded limiting music and video sharing.
Here's a solution for you. A service called Send This File offers a free version that works great.
Five Things You Need to Know for Tuesday, January 17, 2006
Listen up, Michigan: What's Opera, Doc is every Tuesday, 10AM- 1PM on WHFR.FM. Today listen to Mozart Madness featuring Apollo et Hyacinth, What role will alternative energy play in Michigan's future? (requires RealAudio), Michigan Radio's Jack Lessenberry talks with Republican candidate Dick DeVos about his ideas for the state (requires RealAudio).
Return of the Diesel
Crain's Detroit Business reports that Mercedes-Benz (5 models this fall) and Honda, BMW, Nissan and Chrysler (3-5 years) announced plans at the North American International Auto Show to introduce fuel-saving diesel engines in cars and trucks. Factors leading to the return of diesel include cleaner, low-sulfur fuel available in September, breakthroughs in fuel injection and emissions technology and the fact that diesel engines are less complex to design, manufacture and service than a hybrid powerplant.
Good Grades for Michigan's Mountain Biking Trails
Thanks John H. for the tip!
According to the 2005 International Mountain Biking Association Report Card of US trail systems, Michigan's mountain biking trails are among the best in the nation. With a B+ ranking, Michigan trailed only Virginia, West Virginia, Utah, Arizona and Colorado. Ratings are based not only on trail quality, quantity and access for off-road bicycling, but also strength of local organizations, percent of trails open to riding and threats to bike access.
Michigan state parks and recreation areas offer 881 miles of non-motorized trails with 264 miles designated for mountain bike and bicycle use. State Forest trails offer an additional 900 miles of non-motorized trails.
International Mountain Biking Association site
Michigan Mountain Biking Association web site
Youth Sports: Yet Another Thing Violence Doesn't Go With
The Detroit News takes a hard look at how out-of-control parents or fans are making things difficult and dangerous for youth sports coaches and officials. A survey by SportingKid magazine of over 3300 parents found that 84% had witnessed violent parental behavior (shouting, berating, abusive language) toward children, team coaches or officials. Another by Sports Illustrated's S.I. for Kids found that 74% of youths who responded said they had seen out-of-control adults at their games. In addition to drinking (involved in two of the three Michigan incidents, unrealisticly high expectations, stress and excitement are cited as causes.
Lawrence Tech Selected for Solar Home Challenge
The Great Lakes IT Report tipped us off to the news that the US Dept. of Energy has selected Lawrence Technological University as one of only 20 worldwide schools to compete in the 2007 Solar Decathlon. Teams are given $100,000 over the two year contest and are challenged to design, build, and operate the most livable, energy-efficient completely solar-powered house. Each team is judged on its solar home's architecture, livability, comfort, and ability to provide a consistent supply of electricity to run appliances, provide ample lighting, and charge an electric car. The homes must also be able to supply hot water for daily use.
Lawrence Technological University web site
Dominos CEO Brandon Tapped to Head DeVos Campaign
Crain's Detroit Business reports that Domino's Pizza Inc. Chairman and CEO David Brandon will chair the gubernatorial campaign of west Michigan businessman Dick DeVos. Brandon is also the former finance chairman of the Michigan Republican Party and the DeVos camp hopes he will help elevate DeVos' profile in Southeast Michigan.
DeVos for Michigan website
Monday, January 16, 2006
Martin by The Snowsuit Effort
The Snowsuit Effort writes: "I'm on the streets because of heroin and cocaine."
"I wash windows and use the money to buy drugs."
Quilting with care by NOISE PhotoBlog
NOISE PhotoBlog writes: Volunteers at the Quilt-A-Thon completed 68 quilts which will be donated to local charities like EVE (End Violent Encounters), Gateway Community Services, and Loaves and Fishes Ministries.
Demolition Means Progress by dETROITfUNK
dETROITfUNK writes: The Sanders building, part of the Motown Office structure on Woodward and I-75 was demolished this weekend. This is for the few people that werent on site to witness some part of the demo work.
Here's.... Mike! by Kitchen Chick
Kitchen Chick writes: Mike Monahan, of Monahan's Fish Market, posing with a few of his friends. We went there for brunch this morning (Spanish mackerel with Swedish-inspired mustard and dill sauce, which was wonderful but the pictures didn't turn out).
Brigit Nilsson - RIP by What's Opera Doc
What's Opera Doc writes: What's Opera Doc has not been ignoring the passing of one of operas greatest singers of ALL TIME.
COMBATING INLAND INVASIVES by GLRC
GLRC writes: Invasive plants, fish and other creatures are threatening many inland lakes. Environmentalists and property owners are trying to stop the spread...before the invaders dramatically alter the smaller bodies of water.
Five Things You Need to Know for Monday, January 16, 2006
Two more: Happy
Birthday, Happy Birthday, Happy Birthday, Happy Birthday, Happy
Birthday, Happy Birthday to you: Michigan sextuplets turn 2, Wyoming (the state) energy companies hold job fairs in MI.
Martin Luther King's Legacy
In addition to checking out our partial list of Michigan MLK Day events,
you may want to read these items on the impact of Dr. King on Michigan including the "Listen - Learn - Live" program that will gather people from different religions, backgrounds, race and opinions to work on issues of race in Macomb County. Something we didn't know: Michigan Congressman John Conyers introduced legislation for a holiday 4 days after King's assassination but that it took 15 years for passage?
Read King Day is chance to ease tension in the Detroit News
Read http://www.theoaklandpress.com/stories/011606/opi_2006011605.shtml in the Oakland Press
Sulfide Mining Regulations Draw Mixed Reactions
AP writer John Flesher reports that the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality has completed a set of nonferrous mining regulations, drawing praise from an industry spokesman but complaints from environmentalists who say the rules are too weak. Jon Cherry, environment and governmental affairs manager for Kennecott Minerals (a company planning a mine near the headwaters of the Salmon Trout River), said the rules were among the toughest in the nation for the mining industry. "I look forward to designing a project that would be able to meet or exceed those standards that are in the rules," Cherry said, adding that Kennecott can do the mining safely and plans to submit a permit application by the end of April.
Save the Wild U.P., a Marquette-based environmentalist group, said the regulations were too industry-friendly. Save the Wild UP spokesman Dick Huey said: "Albert Einstein famously said, 'God does not play dice with the universe ... DEQ appears willing to play dice with Michigan's most precious resources."
Read Sulfide rules set: DEQ reveals details of mining law / Regulations draw praise and criticism in the Mining Journal
Kennecott Minerals web site
Save the Wild UP site
Kendall College Students Make Midwest Snowboarding Film
The Grand Rapids Press has a feature on three seniors at Kendall College of Art and Design who are creating their own snowboarding film. "Midwest What!" will combine footage shot by the creators and clips submitted by other riders to show snowboarders in Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Indiana. Ken Taylor, a snowboard instructor at Cannonsburg Ski Area says "There's always been a huge skiing and snowboarding culture in the Midwest. Each area of the country has their own culture, and the Midwest has its own quirks. It's cool that someone's finally going to show it."
Antix Media web site (short movie clips available!)
Visit Kendell College in Grand Rapids
Governor Floats Across the Board Per-Student Increase
The Lansing State Journal reports that Gov. Granholm will ask the Legislature to raise K-12 public per-student funding for the state's 1.7 million students by $25 statewide during the current fiscal year at a cost of $42.5 million. The plan that passed the House and is pending in the Senate would seek to improve math scores by giving an extra $49 for every sixth-, seventh- and eighth-grader. It also would provide up to $18 more for every student in districts that receive less than $7,200 in per-student state aid. Rep. Tim Moore, R-Farwell, said he sponsored the bill to help the funding gap between districts that get the minimum grant of $6,875 and wealthy districts that receive between $10,000 and $12,000 per student.
Tips for Beating the Heating Crunch
As the mercury takes a dive, the Detroit Free Press offers seven tips to help you save money on your heating bill. Tips include: applying for the Michigan Home Heating Tax Credit, some great links for energy audits and advice that dialing down 15 degrees overnight can save 5-15% on your heating bill and that every degree you lower the thermostat by will bring a 2% or 3% reduction in heating costs.
Michigan Treasury Heating Assistance page (Home Heating Credit, Winterization tips, more)
US Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
Inside Muskegon: Inside Muskegon #9 - Pat Strum, The Lakes Mall
Inside Muskegon: Inside Muskegon #9 - Pat Strum, The Lakes Mall: “This episode of Inside Muskegon features an interview with Pat Strum, Marketing Director at The Lakes Mall, a commentary on the interview, listener feedback and information on contacting Inside Muskegon.”
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