Some innovation from Africa

If the south waterfront ends up being a go to place for activities getting between there and downtown could make use of these types of transport.

From CNN …

The South African entrepreneur has developed Mellowcabs -- electric three-wheeled vehicles designed for eco-friendly and efficient transportation in urban areas.

Move over, taxi! This S. African three-wheeler wants to take you for a ride

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Congratulations to area teams headed to Cookeville next week for TSSAA high school football championship games:

Division 1 3A: Alcoa* v. Nashville's Christ Presbyterian Academy.
Division 1 4A: Fulton v. Memphis' Trezevant
Division 1 5A: West v. Nashville's Hillsboro
Division 1 6A: Maryville v. Brentwood's Ravenwood
Division II A: Webb v. Franklin's Battle Ground Academy

*With last night's win, Alcoa coach Gary Rankin is now tied for most all-time wins (368) by any Tennessee high school coach. A win next week will give him the record.

Brackets, scores and more...

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Sat
Nov 29 2014
09:27 am

Anderson, Blount, and Knox Counties requested attainment status for finally meeting EPA clean air standards. On Nov. 13, U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander announced that Anderson, Blount, and Knox Counties were "open for business".

On Nov. 26, the EPA announced a proposal to lower the current standard from 75 to 65-70 parts per billion. Alexander says he supports pollution-control rules reducing ozone-causing pollutants. However, he may not agree with the EPA's proposal. Alexander says it may be wiser to leave the standards as they are. "Otherwise we run the risk of unnecessarily making it harder for Tennessee communities to attract new industrial jobs."

Healthier air or new industrial jobs? Decisions, decisions.

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Fri
Nov 28 2014
12:53 pm
By: R. Neal  shortURL

"We don't need a New Coke formula. The problem is we've been out there trying to peddle Tab and RC Cola." Mississippi Democratic Party chairman Rickey Cole

Southern Democrats urge a return to party basics

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A nice thing for Lexington to do.

From Lexington Herald-Leader …

The program, which started Nov. 17 and lasts until Dec. 19, allows citizens to clear their parking records and help out those in need with canned goods that will be donated to God's Pantry Food Bank.

Citizens can take 10 cans of food to the Lexpark office at 122 North Broadway to pay for any meter citation. The hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Lexington Parking Authority's Food for Fines program receives more than 900 cans of food so far

Pay parking ticket with food? One town says yes

32
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Thu
Nov 27 2014
02:38 pm

From Wired …

The oceans aren’t level. Over the span of decades, atmospheric weather patterns push water the water around, causing sea levels in connected basins to rise and fall somewhat predictably. However, since 2000 the two huge basins in the southern hemisphere have broken their trend, rising jointly over 2 millimeters per year.

Science Graphic of the Week: Rising Sea Levels Show Strange Patterns

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Thu
Nov 27 2014
09:32 am

Who wants pie?

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Wed
Nov 26 2014
09:14 pm

This made me wonder about the underground part of North Gay Street. How much of an area is there? Are there ever any historical tours?

From Yahoo …

Street-level solar collectors would be used to filter the sun about 20 feet down to bedrock, turning the dank, subterranean space into a luminous, plant-filled oasis. The park would offer city residents a place of refuge and host art exhibits, music performances, readings and children's activities.

Developers look to create underground NYC park

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Wed
Nov 26 2014
06:53 pm

Per Gerald Witt with KNS, the county’s Audit Committee "has sent a resolution to the County Commission asking for better reporting on school construction accounts."

In a nutshell:

The audit found the maintenance money was used in some new school construction. Auditors said internal controls over capital project accounting process were needed.

But for whatever reason, KNS does not link at its website the full text of the audit? I've asked in comments that they please do.

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Pianist Dr. Eric Littleton and special guest Muse Watson have scheduled their Celebration of Christmas Music show for December 19th, at the Princess Theatre in Harriman. Tickets are only $10!

Continued...

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From the Washington Post …

McCarthy said the EPA’s long-awaited proposal would lower the allowable ozone level from 75 parts per billion, set in the final years of the George W. Bush administration, to a new standard “in the range of 65-70 parts per billion.” As part of the rule-making process, the EPA would accept comment on a wider range of possible limits, from the current 75 ppb to as low as 60 ppb, according to other officials familiar with the EPA’s plans. The agency is expected to adopt a final rule next fall.

EPA to propose tougher rules on smog-causing ozone, setting up clash with GOP

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Wed
Nov 26 2014
03:33 pm

Swedish athletes competing in the Adventure Racing World Championship in Ecuador made friends with a dog. The dog, Arthur, ran with them and swam with them. When it came time for the kayak leg of the race they decided to leave the dog behind.

"Mike, Simon, Staffan and Karen put their kayaks down in the water and set off, but Arthur refused to be left and started swimming. This was too heartbreaking for the team, and Mikael helped Arthur up in the kayak. "

Arthur is now in Sweden with his new best friend.

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Wed
Nov 26 2014
02:26 pm
By: Sandra Clark  shortURL

A humorous look at the free-content-on-website debate:
(link...)

Enjoy!

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Phil Williams interviews Tre Hargett about Tre Hargett's taxpayer funded purchase of Tre Hargett "I Voted" stickers and other Tre Hargett swag.

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From NBC News …

What a difference a year makes. More than 460,000 people signed up for health insurance on the federal government’s website during the first week of open enrollment, officials said Wednesday. And there were no outages or other technical glitches.

More than 3 million people visited Healthcare.gov during that first week, Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell told reporters. “We have seen more than one million people speak with one of our call center representatives,” she said. “We’re off to a solid start.”

Half a Million Sign Up for Obamacare in First Week

30
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Wed
Nov 26 2014
10:07 am

I don't usually participate much in the Thanksgiving weekend shopping hysteria, opting instead to mostly hibernate. BUT, if you're thinking about getting a very cool Moto X (2nd Gen.) on Verizon, you might want to wait until "Cyber Monday." Starting at noon (Eastern) on Monday Dec. 1st you can sign up for a discount code to get $140 off the no-contract price or get one for $0.01 on contract at Verizon. Limited time, limited quantities. More info...

36
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Wed
Nov 26 2014
08:12 am

NPR: Is Digital Learning More Cost-Effective? Maybe Not

Politicians from Jeb Bush to President Obama like to hype the revolutionary power and cost-effectiveness of digital learning, but a new study suggests, in many cases, it is neither more powerful nor cheaper than old-fashioned teaching.

Billions of public dollars have been directed toward digital learning initiatives in recent years, and the report from the National Education Policy Center, a research institute at the University of Colorado, found that they rarely improved outcomes. When they did, they cost more money, not less.

Here's an interesting quote from the study:

Personalized Instruction is based on the metaphor of personal desktop computers -- the technology of the 80s and 90s. Today’s technology is not just personal but mobile, social, and networked. The flexibility and social nature of how technology infuses other aspects of our lives is not captured by the model of Personalized Instruction, which focuses on the isolated individual’s personal path to a fixed end-point. To truly harness the power of modern technology, we need a new vision for educational technology. We need technologies that are based on what we know about the process of learning and take advantage of the mobile, networked technologies of today. [..] The focus of the systems reviewed thus far is exclusively on instruction, and not on the process of learning. Learning has always been an interactive experience -- observation of others, questioning and being questioned, dialog, discussion, and debate. These are interactions between people. The relationships between people that are formed during these interactions help students not only to understand new information but to trust it and to value it. The irony here is that an approach that reduces the time students spend interacting with teachers and other students is called "personalized."

The study: NEPC: New Interest, Old Rhetoric, Limited Results, and the Need for a New Direction for Computer-Mediated Learning

38
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Mon
Nov 24 2014
10:21 pm
By: R. Neal  shortURL
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Mon
Nov 24 2014
07:32 pm

UT basketball assistant resigns

I have not been following the unimpressive (to me) hire of Donnie Tyndall for UT Boy's basketball coach until recent news of NCAA investigations into his past activities came to light. The latest casualty has apparently been with Tyndall at two previous schools, both of which have had some NCAA troubles.

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40
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Lost Medicaid Funding

To date, the failure to expand Medicaid/TennCare has cost the State of Tennessee ? in lost federal funding.

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