Berkeley in the News Archive

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Wednesday, 18 June 2014

1. Ambitious Ojai North Music Festival returns to Berkeley

Cal Performances' Ojai North Music Festival takes place this weekend, June 19-21, on the Berkeley campus. The festival's centerpiece is composer Steven Stucky's new comic opera, The Classical Style, and Matías Tarnopolsky, Cal Performances' executive and artistic director, and his staff are adding free, moderated talks and a community response panel to the mix. According to this reviewer: "Benign or brassy, sacred or 'screwing with the canon,' Ojai North’s music is a tapestry of love, loss, brokenness and whole-hearted joy. It’s war and peace, unity and independence. As [featured vocalist Storm] Large said -- and for three days and nights on the Berkeley campus – 'Music is everything.'" Full Story

2. The Game Theory of Life
Quanta Magazine

A study co-authored by computer science professors Christos Papadimitriou and Umesh Vazirani has found that a 50-year-old algorithm in game theory is identical to the equations used to describe the distribution of genes within a population of organisms. The team believes it may be able to use the algorithm to gain insight into natural selection and the ways that populations maintain genetic diversity. Full Story

3. B.C.'s slow earthquakes fuelled by fluid
CBC News (Canada)

University of Ottawa and Berkeley scientists, including earth and planetary science professor Roland Burgmann, have discovered what makes "slow earthquakes" recur so regularly and why some are more frequent than others. Slow earthquakes can be the equivalent of magnitude-7 quakes, but they last 10 days to two weeks, so they aren't felt. The earthquakes are known to occur in subduction zones around the Pacific ocean, including the Vancouver Island area, and the cause is linked to higher levels of quartz in the earth's crust. Full Story

4. Chronic stress can hurt your memory
CNN Online

A discussion of research showing the effects of stress on memory mentions a Berkeley study finding that chronic stress can create long-term changes in the brain, increasing the development of white matter (which helps transmit messages across the brain), while decreasing the number of neurons (which aide information processing). The resulting imbalance impairs the brain's ability to communicate with itself and increases the risk of various types of mental illness. Another story on this topic appeared in Science World Report. Full Story

5. Four habits for a healthy gut
CNN Online

A story about the positive health effects of probiotics and "friendly" bacteria in the gut quotes Edmond Huang, a post doctoral fellow in nutritional sciences and toxicology. He says: "Get the right type [of bacteria] in your gut and, depending on your condition, you may begin to see improvements in a matter of days or weeks." Full Story

6. Your Call: What are the most recent Supreme Court decisions and how will they affect you?
KALW Radio

Law professor Jesse Choper joins a discussion of recent and anticipated Supreme Court decisions. Professor Choper was also interviewed on KNTV Tuesday about the forthcoming trial of Ahmed Abu Khattala, the alleged ringleader of the 2012 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya (link unavailable online). Full Story

7. UC Berkeley administrator headed to UC Riverside
Inland News Today

Associate Vice Chancellor Ron Coley has been appointed vice chancellor for business and administrative services at UC Riverside. Pending confirmation, his new position will be effective July 1. He will oversee a budget of $89 million and some 600 employees. Full Story

8. Hypocrite watch: Texas Gov. Rick Perry says he may move to California
Los Angeles Times

A commentary about Texas Gov. Rick Perry's reported interest in moving to California -- a state he frequently bashes -- mentions a study co-authored by Berkeley researchers. The study had looked at the upward mobility of children born into "families of modest means in different parts of the country." The results indicated, among other things, that children from California have a much better chance than children from Texas of moving, as adults, from the bottom fifth of earners to the top fifth. Full Story

9. Two men charged after back-to-back Berkeley robberies

Campus police have reported that two alleged robbers have been found and charged in two incidents that occurred just south of campus on June 3. Full Story

10. Hundreds unite in Oakland to help boys, men of color
San Francisco Chronicle

At a three-day conference called The Gathering of Leaders, more than 400 activists, funders, non-profit founders, academics, and policymakers from around the country met in Oakland to discuss ways of helping boys and men of color stay in school, find employment, and keep out of jail. One of the attendees, Clarence Ford, shared his success story. Raised by a single mother in Richmond, he failed at school, couldn't achieve his dream of becoming a professional athlete, and turned to crime. After three years in prison, he decided to change his life. With help from the organization Safe Return, he worked to eliminate the felony conviction question from Richmond city job applications, returned to school, finished community college, and is set to start studying at UC Berkeley in the fall. "I'm trying to set a new trend for young people out there," he said. "They don't have to be a rapper or an athlete." Full Story

Today's Edition of UC Berkeley in the News