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Florida authorities searched Friday for four foster children who were discovered missing from their beds at a foster care home near Tampa. Authorities in San Antonio have rescued eight unsupervised children from a home where a 2-year-old boy was chained to the ground in the backyard and a 3-year-old girl was tied to a door with a dog leash, sheriff’s officials said Friday. Deputies arrived at the home after receiving a call just before midnight about a child crying for a long time, Sheriff’s Office spokesman James Keith said. The Arches rock formation, commonly known as Frame Arch, is off a popular hiking trail where visitors can look through it and view the park’s iconic, stand-alone Delicate Arch. Prosecutors said they were unable to charge Lane with murdering the unborn girl because a coroner found no evidence that the fetus lived outside the womb. The Texas Supreme Court on Friday blocked Houston from enforcing tougher clean-air laws over the hub of industrial pollution that makes it one of the smoggiest cities in the U.S. The ruling is a victory for ExxonMobil Corp. and other companies with nearby refineries that sued in 2008 after the nation’s fourth-largest city essentially accused state environmental regulators of not doing enough.
Author: Chronicle news services
Posted: April 29, 2016, 11:11 pm
South Sudan’s leaders have formed a transitional coalition government bringing together politicians from the government and the armed opposition who have been at war for 2½ years. The government, which has a 30-month mandate culminating in fresh elections, has been formed according to a peace deal signed by Kiir and Machar in August under intense pressure from the international community. The international envoy working to bring peace to eastern Ukraine says an agreement has been reached to observe a cease-fire with the start of the Orthodox Easter and May Day holidays. Martin Sajdik, the special envoy for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, said after talks Friday in Minsk, the Belarusan capital, that the cease-fire was to go into effect at midnight Saturday. The conflict in eastern Ukraine between Russia-backed separatists and Ukrainian government troops has killed nearly 10,000 people since it began in April 2014. Auschwitz apology: A 94-year-old former SS sergeant admitted in court Friday that he had served as an Auschwitz death camp guard, apologizing to Nazi Holocaust survivors looking on in a German courtroom that even though he was aware Jews were being gassed and their corpses burned, he did nothing to try to stop it. Reinhold Hanning told the Detmold state court that he had never spoken about his wartime service in Auschwitz from January 1942 to June 1944, even to his family, but wanted to use his trial as an opportunity to set the record straight. The Seville Archaeological Museum said the construction workers came across 19 amphoras containing thousands of bronze and silver-coated coins dating from the end of the fourth century.
Author: Chronicle News Services
Posted: April 29, 2016, 10:53 pm
WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Friday rejected an emergency appeal to stop Texas from enforcing its challenged voter ID law. The law has been in effect for recent elections, even after a trial judge struck it down in 2014 and an appellate panel found last year that the law had a discriminatory effect on minority voters. The challengers in the ongoing lawsuit argue there is no reason to allow the requirement to show picture identification at the polls to remain in place. Free voting IDs are available from the state, but opponents have said getting those cards still puts underlying financial costs on voters, such as paying for birth certificate copies and travel. While there have been anecdotal reports of confusion in the Texas elections held while the law is in force, there haven’t been widespread issues with people being unable to cast ballots because they lacked proper identification.
Author: Associated Press
Posted: April 29, 2016, 9:58 pm
DAMASCUS, Syria — Insurgents shelled a government-held area in the contested city of Aleppo, hitting a mosque and killing at least 15 people as they left Friday prayers, while government air strikes struck rebel-held parts of Syria’s largest city — even as the army unilaterally declared a brief truce in other parts of the country. Yet by late morning air raids resumed on the city, killing at least 10 people, according to activists from the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and the Local Coordination Committees. The resumption of air raids prompted religious leaders to suspend the collective Friday prayers in mosques in rebel-held areas. The carnage in Aleppo — a city contested since the summer of 2012, when opposition fighters took over several districts — was particularly bad on Wednesday and Thursday, when ai r strikes and artillery killed more than 80 people, including dozens at a hospital in a rebel-held neighborhood. On Friday, Doctors Without Borders, which had supported the hospital alongside other international organizations, said the death toll in Thursday’s bombing had risen to 50, including six medical staff and patients.
Author: Associated Press
Posted: April 29, 2016, 9:54 pm
Presidential candidate Donald Trump was forced to abandon his motorcade on the side of a freeway, scramble up a hillside and slip into a side entrance of the hotel hosting the California GOP Convention on Friday as hundreds of angry protesters surrounded the building and did their best to disrupt the Republican front-runner’s speech. Trump joked about his roundabout entrance to the convention, saying it felt like he was “crossing the border” — but the rambunctious demonstrators outside saw no humor in it all as they scuffled with police, threw eggs and blocked roads around the Hyatt Regency in Burlingame. Antoinette Chen See, 34, one of several protesters who formed a human chain on Old Bayshore Road outside the hotel, said she came out to try to deny Trump a platform in the Bay Area for what she called his racist rhetoric. “We have a failed system in which someone who is so anti-black, so anti-Muslim and so anti-immigrant is allowed to be a viable candidate for president,” she said. While trying to get in to hear his candidate’s speech, one Trump supporter wearing a “Make American great again” hat was punched in the back of the head by a protester in a black hoodie. Around noon, just as Trump’s speech was scheduled to begin, a group of protesters broke through the barricades set up around the hotel and tried to surge into the convention. The protests were organized by a number of local activist groups including the Anti Police Terror Project, Black Lives Matter Bay Area the BlackOUT Collective. The representation among the crowd, though all united around their aversion to Trump, was diverse with pro-choice groups mingling among Hillary Clinton supporters who stood alongside Bernie Sanders fans. Burlingame police had been preparing for the chaos all week, and called in help from law enforcement agencies around the Bay Area.
Author: By Kimberly Veklerov and Kale Williams
Posted: April 29, 2016, 9:52 pm


Bay Area News

Presidential candidate Donald Trump was forced to abandon his motorcade on the side of a freeway, scramble up a hillside and slip into a side entrance of the hotel hosting the California GOP Convention on Friday as hundreds of angry protesters surrounded the building and did their best to disrupt the Republican front-runner’s speech. Trump joked about his roundabout entrance to the convention, saying it felt like he was “crossing the border” — but the rambunctious demonstrators outside saw no humor in it all as they scuffled with police, threw eggs and blocked roads around the Hyatt Regency in Burlingame. Antoinette Chen See, 34, one of several protesters who formed a human chain on Old Bayshore Road outside the hotel, said she came out to try to deny Trump a platform in the Bay Area for what she called his racist rhetoric. “We have a failed system in which someone who is so anti-black, so anti-Muslim and so anti-immigrant is allowed to be a viable candidate for president,” she said. While trying to get in to hear his candidate’s speech, one Trump supporter wearing a “Make American great again” hat was punched in the back of the head by a protester in a black hoodie. Around noon, just as Trump’s speech was scheduled to begin, a group of protesters broke through the barricades set up around the hotel and tried to surge into the convention. The protests were organized by a number of local activist groups including the Anti Police Terror Project, Black Lives Matter Bay Area the BlackOUT Collective. The representation among the crowd, though all united around their aversion to Trump, was diverse with pro-choice groups mingling among Hillary Clinton supporters who stood alongside Bernie Sanders fans. Burlingame police had been preparing for the chaos all week, and called in help from law enforcement agencies around the Bay Area.
Author: By Kimberly Veklerov and Kale Williams
Posted: April 29, 2016, 9:52 pm
From 70 feet in the air, Brooke Bianco clutched the rim of a bucket cart as it jerked and jumped higher and higher. A line of elementary students snaked behind him, heads craned up to look at Bianco. Hordes of tiny workers in bright yellow hard hats and plastic gloves learned the nitty-gritty of carpentry and street cleaning, metal work and tree trimming. The event was part of Public Works Week and sought to showcase how skilled labor helps keep the city running. “We want kids to see that these are real, good-paying jobs,” said Public Works Director Mohammed Nuru. The department employs about 64 trade workers, including carpenters, locksmiths, electricians, painters, plumbers and metal workers. At one workstation, carpentry supervisor Jeffrey Soria helped students hammer together wooden planters. Things like building a planter show kids that the field can be fun and that it’s necessary for the city to function and thrive. The hands-on experience drew shrieks and giggles from the groups of students, who also got to paint traffic pylons covered in graffiti and scoop up dirt with a backhoe. Booths from different unions lined a walkway, and members were ready to provide advice.
Author: By Lizzie Johnson
Posted: April 29, 2016, 8:09 pm
Author: SFGATE staff
Posted: April 29, 2016, 6:06 pm

The San Francisco Portola Festival was held October 19 - 23, 1909. It honored Don Gaspar de Portola, the discoverer of San Francisco Bay. It also was a celebration of a city, just three years earlier, lay in ruins. The festival ran each year until 1913.

Author: Bob Bragman
Posted: April 29, 2016, 10:50 am
A pair of polls about the Bay Area’s backed-up transportation system released Thursday reveal gridlock not only on the roads and highways but in the minds of residents. Frustration over increasingly congested traffic around the region has reached the point that most people don’t think it will ever get better, according to a poll by the Bay Area Council. Yet a Metropolitan Transportation Commission poll finds that most — but not quite enough — voters are likely to favor a Bay Area gas-tax increase to fund road repairs and bike and pedestrian routes. The polls were conducted and released independently but point to transportation, and how to improve it, as key issues facing the Bay Area. If people in the Bay Area are feeling comfortable about their finances, comfortable with the economy but have concerns about more housing in the Bay Area and are already frustrated with traffic, that’s a problem. The MTC poll, a telephone survey, was conducted in March and April by Corey, Canapary and Galanis Research of San Francisco and involved 2,048 people. The poll by the Bay Area Council, a business-sponsored public policy advocacy group, focused on traffic, finding that a whopping 83 percent of those surveyed believe that it may never improve. The vast majority of those polled identified the Bay Bridge, San Francisco and Oakland as the worst places for traffic, and 28 percent said traffic was at a crisis level requiring changes in the law to speed improvements. When it comes to transportation planning, those polled preferred a strong regional approach instead of a local focus for both roads and highways and public transportation. For roads and highways, 67 percent wanted regional planning while 64 percent favored a regional approach for public transportation. Jim Wunderman, president and chief executive officer of the Bay Area Council, said the region’s congestion should be expected, especially given economic growth. The business community is not going to accept this fate nor should the public transportation agencies. Wunderman called on transportation planners to harness the innovative and technological riches of the Bay Area to improve traffic and transit, creating easier ways to make transit connections, metering traffic to flow better, coordinating carpooling with apps and modernizing transit systems. State legislation allows the nine Bay Area counties to vote to raise their gas taxes by as much as 10 cents a gallon to fund transportation.
Author: By Michael Cabanatuan
Posted: April 29, 2016, 7:01 am

Entertainment

In a performance of remarkable power and tonal beauty, McGegan and his crew of musicians — including the excellent Philharmonia Chorale and a lineup of first-rate vocal soloists — unveiled an expansive and eloquent masterpiece, one that belongs by rights on the repertoire list of every orchestra in the country. The three orchestral movements — a boldly expository opening that establishes key themes that will recur throughout the piece, followed by a suave, dancelike scherzo and an eloquent slow movement — hover tantalizingly midway between fully formed statements and introductory material. The vocal and choral movements that follow complete the balance of weight in a way that is elegantly Mozartean — a pointed and deliberate contrast to the disruptive force of Beethoven’s comparably placed “Ode to Joy.” The orchestral movements sounded alternately robust, delicate and finely detailed; the singing of Bruce Lamott’s Philharmonia Chorale, augmented with members of the UC Berkeley Chamber Chorus and the Stanford Chamber Chorale, was never less than stirring. [...] the finest contributions came from soprano Dominique Labelle and tenor Thomas Cooley, who each brought extraordinary tonal splendor and dramatic intensity to their assignments. First Congregational Church, 2345 Durant St., Berkeley.
Author: By Joshua Kosman
Posted: April 29, 2016, 8:25 pm
Biopics face the music on how artists really lived Just this year, we’ve seen the life stories of Hank Williams (“I Saw the Light”), Chet Baker (“Born to Be Blue”) and Miles Davis (“Miles Ahead”) told in a warts-and-all style that never would have been possible a couple of generations ago. The appeal of the musical biopic remains the same — if filmmakers choose the right artist and get the music right, they almost can’t go wrong, or at least, not too wrong. Not too long ago, no filmmaker could have imagined getting permission to use the artist’s music in such a film. [...] today’s audiences understand that creative artists are not always the nicest people and that the music business can make for a hard life and some rough edges. By contrast, the new movie presents Williams’ alcoholism as nothing but a tragic weakness. [...] though it goes further in the direction of showing Williams’ married life as plainly horrible — the earlier film had to soft-pedal this because Audrey Williams was still alive — it makes it clear that Hank was no model husband. [...] Larry Parks, instead of acting like an obnoxious egomaniac in “The Jolson Story” (1946), played Al Jolson as a lovable soul filled with the joy of performance. [...] these films were just excuses for songs, but they were good excuses. [...] the movie’s portrayal of her drug addiction had a raw edge. The scenarios were so similar that they became the subject of the full-length movie parody, Walk Hard: “The Runaways,” a biopic of the 1970s rock band, was a wallow in decadence that perfectly encapsulated its era while re-creating the excitement and energy of this seminal female rock band. Last year, “Straight Outta Compton,” about the rap group NWA, was actually more in the heroic vein, but “Love & Mercy,” starring Paul Dano and John Cusack as Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys, was almost embarrassingly candid in its portrait of Wilson’s struggles with mental illness. With all these movies about terrible or tormented people who happened to be great artists — whose talent was in some way related to their awfulness or torment — it was only a matter of time before someone got a new idea. The idea arrived with the French film “Marguerite” (2016) and will be further developed in the upcoming musical biopic “Florence Foster Jenkins” starring Meryl Streep. Three Little Words (1950): Fred Astaire won a Golden Globe for his performance as Bert Kalmar, a vaudeville song-and-dance man who turned to songwriting and became the lyricist for Harry Ruby (Red Skelton). Sid and Nancy (1986): The story of the Sex Pistols bassist Sid Vicious and his girlfriend, Nancy Spungen, makes for the darkest of macabre comedies, directed with flair by Alex Cox. Impromptu (1991): An antidote to the anti-George Sand Chopin film, “A Song to Remember,” is this biopic starring Judy Davis as a fussy, funny, nervous-wreck Sand and Hugh Grant as a bashful Chopin. What’s Love Got to Do With It (1993): This musical biopic of Tina Turner makes for a terrific drama, with Turner (Angela Bassett) ultimately triumphing over her gifted but abusive husband, Ike Turner (Laurence Fishburne). The movie features an ideally cast Fanny Ardant and contains one shattering, unforgettable sequence — of Callas listening to her old recordings. Cadillac Records (2008): This is a brilliantly directed film (by Darnell Martin) about Chess Records, the label that first recorded Muddy Waters, Chuck Berry and other musical greats. The Runaways (2010): Terrific performances by Kristen Stewart (as Joan Jett) and Dakota Fanning (as Cherie Currie) highlight this 1970s snapshot, which captures the mood of that decade better than any other film I’ve seen.
Author: By Mick LaSalle
Posted: April 29, 2016, 7:12 pm
Fictional representations of the Partition of 1947, which created India and Pakistan as two sovereign nations, have inspired countless writers and filmmakers. The massive transfer of people between the countries, with Muslims moving to live in the newly created Pakistan, and Hindus and Sikhs traveling into India, was so disruptive — so rife with violence, fear and faith — it can’t help but provide compelling fodder for drama. Shobha Rao’s short-story collection “An Unrestored Woman” joins this strong tradition of Partition literature, but brings to it a distinctive contemporary sensibility. All of the stories make engaging use of historical material for their strong plots. “The Opposite of Sex” tells the story of Mohan, a land surveyor whose childhood is stolen by the sexual abuse of his father’s friend. Mohan’s transgression destroys the father’s ability to provide a dowry for his daughter, triggering twists that culminate in violence. At one point Singh tries to calm Jenkins by delicately wrapping a hand around his wrist, and “and in that moment [Jenkins] thought he might’ve come to know for the briefest moment, the thing for which he’d always yearned, the thing that was the opposite of his many, many lonely years, the opposite — at this, he closed his eyes — of his concealment.”
Author: By Anita Felicelli
Posted: April 29, 2016, 7:06 pm
The Uncovered Story of Indian Enslavement in America No other book has so thoroughly related the broad history of Indian slavery in the Americas, and not just its facts but the very reason it has been overlooked. Most Blessed of the Patriarchs Thomas Jefferson and the Empire of the Imagination Gordon-Reed and Onuf have given us a new and empowering perspective on the private and public life of one of our greatest Americans. The latest installment in Knausgaard’s autobiographical project does a remarkably good job of depicting failure, and of capturing the single-mindedness required to make real artistic progress. How Digital Memory Is Shaping Our Future Rumsey’s important and rich book asks how we can ensure that the digital information we’re amassing today will serve as a “coherent and continuous” model of our world tomorrow.
Author: Chronicle Staff Report
Posted: April 29, 2016, 6:39 pm
Literary guide Daniel Handler In conversation with Malcolm Clemens Young. 9:30 a.m. Grace Cathedral, 1100 California St., S.F. www.booksinc.net. Ingrid Fiksdahl King “What Can I Be?” 4 p.m. Mrs. Dalloway’s, 2904 College Ave., Berkeley. 1 p.m. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. Christine Moore, Cecilia Leung “Little Flower Baking.” 3 p.m. Omnivore Books, 3885 Cesar Chavez St., S.F. (415) 282-4712. www.omnivorebooks.com. Poetry Flash Readings by Willis Barnstone and Tony Barnstone. 3 p.m. Diesel Bookstore, 5433 College Ave., Oakland. Matt Richtel “A Deadly Wandering: A Mystery, a Landmark Investigation, and the Astonishing Science of Attention in the Digital Age.” Kelly Starret “Deskbound.” 4 p.m. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. David Barry “The Worst Night Ever.” 7:30 p.m. Kepler’s, 1010 El Camino Real, Menlo Park. Mike Curato, Ruth Chan “Little Elliot, Big Fun,” “Where’s the Party?” 6 p.m. Books Inc., 3515 California St., S.F. (415) 221-3666. www.booksinc.net. Dorothy Hearst, Sylvia Linsteadt, Elizabeth Stark, Angie Powers Spirit of the Wolves: Book Three of the Wolf Chronicles, “Wonderments of the East Bay.” 7 p.m. Books Inc., 1491 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. Mama Said Contributors to the collection of narratives about motherhood read. Green Apple Books, 506 Clement St., S.F. (415) 387-2272. www.greenapplebooks.com. William Carlsen Jungle of Stone: The True Story of Two Men, Their Extraordinary Journey, and the Discovery of the Lost Civilization of the Maya. 7 p.m. Books Inc., 1491 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. Ali Eteraz “Native Believer.” 7 p.m. City Lights Bookstore, 261 Columbus Ave., S.F. (415) 362-8193. www.citylights.com. 6 p.m. Book Passage, One Ferry Building, S.F. (415) 835-1020. www.bookpassage.com. 7 p.m. Redwood City Library, 1044 Middlefield Rd., Redwood City. www.keplers.com. Carolyn Keene “Murder With a Twist.” 11:30 a.m. Le Paradis Bakery, D St. and Mission Blvd., Hayward. Sarah Mylnowski “Genie in a Bottle!” 6 p.m. Books Inc., 1344 Park St., Alameda. Frances Stroh, Tom Barbash “Beer Money.” 7 p.m. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. Azadeh Tabazadeh “The Sky Detective: A Memoir of How I Fled Iran and Became a NASA Scientist.” 7 p.m. Books Inc., 601 Van Ness Ave., S.F. (415) 776-1111. www.booksinc.net. Black British Writers Readings by Bernardine Evaristo, Colin Grant, Diran Adebayo, Gabriel Gbadamosi, Jay Bernard, Johny Pitts, Karen McCarthy Woolf, Nick Makoha, Roger Robinson. 7:30 p.m. Green Apple Books on the Park, 1231 9th Ave., S.F. (415) 742-5833. www.greenapplebooks.com. Julie Buxbaum, Jeff Zentner, Laura McNeal, Kara Thomas “Tell Me Three Things,” “The Serpent King,” “The Incident on the Bridge,” “The Darkest Corners.” 7 p.m. A Great Good Place for Books, 6120 LaSalle Ave., Oakland. 1 p.m. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. 7 p.m. Copperfield’s Books, 775 Village Court, Santa Rosa. In Deep Radio Angie Coiro in conversation with Niles Southern. Kepler’s, 1010 El Camino Real, Menlo Park. Mason Inman “The Oracle of Oil: A Maverick Geologist’s Quest for a Sustainable Future.” 7 p.m. Books Inc., 1491 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. 7 p.m. Copperfield’s Books, 3740 Bel Aire Plaza, Napa. Sarah J. Naas, Evelyn Skye “A Court of Mist and Fury.” 6:30 p.m. Kepler’s, 1010 El Camino Real, Menlo Park. Viet Thanh Nguyen “Nothing Ever Dies.” 7 p.m. City Lights Bookstore, 261 Columbus Ave., S.F. (415) 362-8193. www.citylights.com. Commonwealth Club, 555 Post St., S.F. (415) 597-6705. www.commonwealthclub.org. Yossy Arefi Sweeter Off the Vine: 6:30 p.m. Omnivore Books, 3885 Cesar Chavez St., S.F. (415) 282-4712. www.omnivorebooks.com. Mark Braude, Mary Pilon, Jane Shaw “Making Monte Carlo,” “The Monopolists.” Julie Buxbaum, Jeff Zentner, Laura McNeal, Kara Thomas “Tell Me Three Things,” “The Serpent King,” “The Incident on the Bridge,” “The Darkest Corners.” 7 p.m. Books Inc., 601 Van Ness Ave., S.F. (415) 776-1111. www.booksinc.net. 7:30 p.m. Green Apple Books on the Park, 1231 9th Ave., S.F. (415) 742-5833. www.greenapplebooks.com. 7 p.m. San Mateo Public Library, Oak Room, 55 West 3rd Ave., San Mateo. www.booksinc.net. Peggy Orenstein Girls & Sex: 7 p.m. Books Inc., 1491 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. M. Gerald Schwartzbach “Leaning on the Arc.” 6 p.m. Commonwealth Club, 555 Post St., S.F. (415) 597-6705. www.commonwealthclub.org. Uptown Theatre, 1350 Third St., Napa. www.uptowntheatrenapa.com. 7 p.m. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. Why Young Men Are Struggling & What We Can Do About It. 7 p.m. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. Megan E. O’Keefe “Steal the Sky.” 7 p.m. Copperfield’s Books, 140 Kentucky St., Petaluma. 7 p.m. Copperfield’s Books, 138 N. Main St., Sebastopol. www.copperfieldsbooks.com. Crime Writers Writing Without Guns Readings by Eric Beetner, Joe Clifford, Tom Pitts, Holly West, SW Lauden, Kelli Stanley. 7:30 p.m. Pegasus Books, 2349 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. Why Young Men Are Struggling & What We Can Do about It. 7 p.m. Books Inc., 1491 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. 7 p.m. Copperfield’s Books, 999 Grant Ave., Novato. www.copperfieldsbooks.com. Pablo Hidalgo Star Wars: The Force Awakens Visual Dictionary. 3 p.m. Copperfield’s Books, 140 Kentucky St., Petaluma. 7 p.m. Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. Jamie Purviance “Weber’s New American Barbecue.” 3 p.m. Omnivore Books, 3885 Cesar Chavez St., S.F. (415) 282-4712. www.omnivorebooks.com.
Posted: April 29, 2016, 6:37 pm

Business and Technology News

“Tipping is not included, nor is it expected or required,” Uber’s policy team wrote Friday in a blog post on Medium, reiterating that this policy has not changed, despite last week’s settlement of two class-action lawsuits brought by drivers. Uber agreed to clarify its approach to tipping as part of the settlement because drivers had claimed that customers believed that tips were included in their fares and thus did not offer gratuities. When the service started, it told passengers tips were included in the cashless transactions, which was part of its appeal. After facing a class-action lawsuit from drivers who claimed that Uber was skimming those ostensibly included tips, the company changed its tune. [...] we decided against including one because we felt it would be better for riders and drivers to know for sure what they would pay or earn on each trip — without the uncertainty of tipping. Riders are welcome to offer tips and drivers are free to accept them, the post said, saying the company predicts that will happen “on only a very small percentage of trips in the U.S.” “I think Uber went out of its way (from its beginning) to discourage tipping because it fits their business model,” said Michael Lynn, a professor of consumer behavior and marketing at the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration, who studies tipping. “They have ample opportunities for service customization in terms of routes taken, music and temperature choices, and social interaction during the ride, they perform a relatively low status job, and they often face hours of work while many of their passengers are headed to positive places/events,” he wrote in a forthcoming paper in the Journal of Economic Psychology.
Author: By Carolyn Said
Posted: April 29, 2016, 10:56 pm
LeEco — a Chinese company with brash dreams of challenging Apple, Tesla and Netflix — on Thursday officially opened a North American headquarters smack in the backyards of its Silicon Valley competitors. LeEco’s office on North First Street in San Jose is a showcase for the company’s eclectic array of products, which range from smartphones and TVs to streaming video to a self-driving, electric sports car. Founded in 2004, LeEco is an Internet company with fingers in a wide range of industries. Formerly named LeTV, the company went public in 2010, has more than 8,000 employees and owns streaming rights in China for sports programing that includes Major League Baseball and the English Premier League. LeEco does offer accessories such as Bluetooth headphones and speakers to U.S. residents through its e-commerce site, LeMall.com. “Apple’s innovation has become extremely slow,” Jia told the financial news network. [...] last week at the Beijing Auto Show, LeEco unveiled the LeSee, a concept electric car that Jia boldly promoted as a competitor to Tesla. The company displayed some of its prototype products, including a 120-inch TV monitor, an Android-powered smart bicycle, a virtual reality headset and a scale model of the concept car.
Author: By Benny Evangelista
Posted: April 29, 2016, 10:52 pm
Apple’s second-quarter earnings report last week showed how hard it can be to keep the attention of China’s fickle and increasingly hard-to-impress consumers. China’s young, middle-class consumers are increasingly willing, analysts say, to try phones from the many competitors — including Huawei, Meizu and Xiaomi — that are competing with Apple on technical specifications and aesthetics but that offer their models for a few hundred dollars less. The company’s iBooks Store and iTunes Movies services were recently shut down by a Chinese regulator, just six months after they started operating. The rare about-face by China suggests that Apple could face further pressure as the Chinese government increases its scrutiny of U.S. companies’ operations within its borders. Jason Low, an analyst in Shanghai with the research group Canalys, said he expects the Chinese smartphone market to grow only 4.7 percent in 2016. In 2012 and 2013, the company’s sales growth in China slowed as competitors like Samsung offered phones with larger screens, which are very popular in China. When Apple released a phone with a similar screen size in 2014, its market share roared back. Samsung’s Edge phones have screens with rounded edges on one side, and many say the camera on Huawei’s flagship model is better than Apple’s camera. Many of Mo’s co-workers and former classmates use Android phones, she said, and she is considering switching to a device by Samsung of South Korea or to a Chinese phone made by ZTE or One Plus.
Author: New York Times
Posted: April 29, 2016, 9:59 pm
Bay Area Consumers’ Checkbook and Checkbook.org checked prices at florists and at other retailers that sell flowers and found substantial differences. If you can pick up the flowers (as opposed to having them delivered) you can save a bundle by purchasing arrangements at a supermarket or warehouse club, which had prices that, on average, were 44 percent lower than florists. Checkbook also collected customer ratings for florist shops, and found that quality of service also varied dramatically. If you’re ordering by phone, think in advance how to describe what you want — the size and shape, colors and the occasion for the arrangement. Some telemarketing firms pose as florists by placing ads in local phone directories and on the Internet using business names that sound like local shops. Worse yet, Checkbook found that these fake-local firms are the source of a large volume of consumer complaints. The Chronicle is partnering with Bay Area Consumers’ Checkbook magazine and Checkbook.org, a nonprofit consumer group that rates various types of service companies and professionals, to help you find the best services in the Bay Area. Chronicle readers can read Checkbook's full article with advice on choosing, buying and keeping flowers fresh, and through May 31, 2016, use Checkbook's ratings of 48 Bay Area florists, free of charge, at www.checkbook.org/chronicle/florists
Author: Consumers’ Checkbook
Posted: April 29, 2016, 9:56 pm
TiVo, whose name became synonymous with the act of recording live television shows, agreed to be acquired by the Rovi Corp. for about $1.1 billion, the companies announced Friday. In acquiring TiVo, Rovi will get access to data about viewing habits, which are provided to advertisers and media companies. Naveen Chopra, TiVo’s chief financial officer, has been serving as interim CEO. “By working together, Rovi and TiVo will revolutionize how consumers experience media and entertainment, and at the same time build value for our stockholders,” Carson said in the statement. Both companies have been able to generate billions of dollars from intellectual property licensing and awards from patent-related lawsuits.
Author: New York Times
Posted: April 29, 2016, 9:35 pm

Top Sports Stories RSS Feed

The Anaheim Ducks fired coach Bruce Boudreau on Friday, two days after the four-time Pacific Division champions’ first-round exit from the playoffs. While announcing the move, Ducks general manager Bob Murray expressed much more anger at his players than at Boudreau, who hasn’t been able to pair postseason success with steady excellence in his two NHL jobs in Anaheim and Washington. Boudreau has won 409 regular-season games and eight division titles, but just five playoff rounds in his coaching career. Boudreau had spectacular regular-season success with the Ducks, leading them to four consecutive division titles while going 208-104-40 in nearly five seasons in charge. Compounding the pain, the Ducks also blew a 3-2 series lead in each of the past four postseasons, missing two opportunities to eliminate their opponents. The NHL fined Capitals forward Tom Wilson $2,404 for his knee-on-knee hit on Pittsburgh’s Conor Sheary, sparing him a suspension that could have altered the second-round playoff series against the Penguins. ...
Author: Associated Press
Posted: April 29, 2016, 11:13 pm
A tendon injury in 2013 sidelined him for 17½ months, and then a case of colic shelved him after a dominant victory in the Grade 1 Eddie Read Stakes on July 18 at Del Mar. “You just have to deal with it and be glad he makes it back,” trainer Jeff Mullins said. Gabriel Charles had surgery on his tendon and also to relieve his colic — a painful (and sometimes fatal) gastrointestinal ailment that is fairly common in horses. [...] running are graded stakes winners G. G. Rider, who captured the San Francisco Mile last year, Alert Bay, Tamarando and Home Run Kitten. Throw in Docs Legacy, who has won six of his past nine starts including a victory over Alert Bay and Tamarando in an allowance event April 9, and you have quality and quantity in the 1-mile grass race. Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith will have the task of negotiating the late-running Gabriel Charles through the large field.
Author: By Larry Stumes
Posted: April 29, 2016, 10:33 pm
PHILADELPHIA — Philadelphia drug dealers looking to market their heroin as top of the line are stamping packets with the likeness of Warriors superstar Stephen Curry. Regional transit police chief Thomas Nestel tweeted a picture of several packets featuring Curry’s face and name.
Author: Associated Press
Posted: April 29, 2016, 10:29 pm
Giants hope to keep rolling versus Mets, Susac update plus lineup NEW YORK — A couple of interesting stats to ponder ahead of the Giants’ series opener against the Mets on Friday night, as they try to win for the sixth time in seven games: The Giants have three left-handed hitters who are batting over .300 versus lefty pitchers. [...] the Giants have the fewest hitter strikeouts in the National League at 141. The challenge will be particularly keen against Syndergaard, who has struck out a ridiculous 38 batters in 26 2/3 innings with his 100-mph fastball and 95-mph slider. The Giants are running out their normal lineup Friday, with Buster Posey returning after being off Thursday. Jake Peavy will try to build off his best start of the year, seven innings and two runs allowed in a 7-2 victory over the Marlins. Andrew Susac went on the disabled list for Triple-A Sacramento with right shoulder discomfort.
Author: By Henry Schulman
Posted: April 29, 2016, 10:23 pm

Warriors guard Stephen Curry, in his first extended interview since spraining his right knee Sunday in Houston - and learning a day later he would be sidelined for at least two weeks - said he’s “optimistic” and hopes to return sooner than May 9, the designated date his status will be re-evaluated. Curry started riding the stationary bike a bit Thursday and has spent time in the weight room trying to maintain his strength. Replays of the injury, on the final play of the first half of Game 4 against the Rockets, cleared up Curry’s confusion about the wet spot on which he slipped. Ron Kroichick is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer.

Author: By Ron Kroichick
Posted: April 29, 2016, 10:19 pm
Things to do in San Francisco
Stephen C. Webb Big Dog City Taxi 804

WELCOME to The Taxi Drivers Guide To San Francisco .com a tool and soon to be published travel guide to the city by the bay. I have been a San Francisco taxicab driver for the past 24 years and would like to share my experiences, travel tips and things to do in San Francisco. The goal of this website is to save the reader time, and money and make their visit memorable and safe.

Things to do in San Francisco I recommend as a taxidriver are as follows:     Alcatraz Island   the most famous fomer Federal Prison in history:  This prison housed Al  CoponeMachine Gun Kelley, and the “Bird Man of Alcatraz“.   Haight Ashbury the ground zero area for the start of the 1960’s counterculture movement .   The area now known as The Haight was where Charles Manson recruited his followers.  The 1960’s greats such as Big Brother and the Holding Company, Jefferson Starship and many others formed in this historical area of San Francisco.    The Golden Gate BridgeGolden Gate Park and the Painted Ladies are a must see.   The cable car system in San Francisco is affordable, safe, and fun video yourself and send a picture home to your friends and stop off in Chinatown for some great Asian Food.

Taxi Costs

San Francisco, is ranked #1 in the nation for being the ideal city for walking, hiking, or sightseeing on foot. However, when the winds and rain start pouring down and the temperature drops sometimes you might be in need of taxi transportation. Read More >>

Contact a Cabbie

THE FOLLOWING LIST OF TAXIDRIVERS IN SAN FRANCISCO HAVE GIVEN PERMISSION TO HAVE THEIR PERSONAL CELL PHONE NUMBERS POSTED ON THIS SITE: THIS IS YOUR DIRECT LINE TO A CABDRIVER: View List >>

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