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robertogreco : berkeley   45

Magic & Pasta (@__magicandpasta) • Fotos y vídeos de Instagram
"A cultural art & conversation space in Berkeley, CA. Welcoming POC/women/LGBTQ+ and their allies."

[See also: https://tinyletter.com/magicandpasta ]
berkeley  art  lcproject  openstudioproject  sanfrancisco  culture  studios 
may 2019 by robertogreco
The Complete Guide to Eating and Drinking in San Francisco - Eater SF
"Unofficial, highly opinionated information about the city by the Bay

In the home of green goddess dressing, Mission-style burritos, farm-to-table everything, and the toast-as-menu-item phenomenon, there's a lot of noise when it comes to what to eat. This guide will help you get to the real San Francisco treats out there."
eater  sanfrancisco  food  restaurants  bayarea  eastbay  oakland  berkeley 
april 2019 by robertogreco
Open Forum: Bring back the ‘missing middle’ housing - SFChronicle.com
"Tucked into neighborhoods throughout Oakland, Berkeley and many other Bay Area cities are small, beautiful duplexes, triplexes and fourplexes. These multifamily residences tend to be more affordable than single-family homes and were a major housing type in U.S. urban areas before World War II. But since the 1960s and ’70s, this type of essential housing has become illegal in neighborhoods throughout the Bay Area and nation because it exceeds the density allowed. That’s why it’s now called “missing middle” housing. It’s time we brought it back.

Late this month, the Berkeley City Council is scheduled to vote on a proposal to study the return of the missing middle — specifically, duplexes, triplexes and fourplexes — in most areas of the city, except for the fire-prone hills. Councilmembers Lori Droste, Ben Bartlett, Rashi Kesarwani and Rigel Robinson patterned their plan on a groundbreaking law that passed last fall in Minneapolis. In a historic vote, the Minneapolis City Council decided to become the first in the nation to once again allow for new duplexes and triplexes in single-family-home neighborhoods.

In a letter of support for the Berkeley plan, Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf said it could serve as a model for her city and others. Indeed, it could be a model for all of California.

It would also help right a historic wrong. During the first part of the 20th century, some white, wealthy neighborhoods in Berkeley attached racial covenants to housing deeds — covenants that banned people of color from living there. Then, after the U.S. Supreme Court outlawed racial covenants in 1916 in Buchanan vs. Warley, Berkeley, regrettably, became a national leader of so-called “exclusionary zoning” laws. These laws worked much like racial covenants: They banned apartment buildings in many neighborhoods under the racist reasoning that people of color wouldn’t be able to live in those neighborhoods because they couldn’t afford to buy single-family homes.

In the following decades, “redlining” (a discriminatory practice of refusing to loan or insure in certain neighborhoods) and disinvestment deepened the racial divide in housing, as Richard Rothstein noted in his acclaimed 2017 book, “The Color of Law.” Cities and counties made matters worse in the ’60s and ’70s when they expanded exclusionary zoning, prohibiting missing middle housing in most neighborhoods.

Berkeley deserves credit for green-lighting new multi-unit housing downtown and on some major transit corridors during the past decade. But large swaths of the city are still limited by exclusive R-1 zoning, which only allows for single-family homes. In fact, homeowners in much of the city not only can’t add another home to a large lot but are blocked from subdividing their existing large house into two, three or four units.

Berkeley, of course, is not alone in its embrace of exclusionary zoning. Issi Romem, chief economist for Trulia, estimates that single-family-home neighborhoods represent nearly half of the land mass of the Bay Area and Los Angeles. The consequences of banning the missing middle have also been devastating for low-, moderate- and middle-income families. The median sales price of a home in Berkeley soared 65 percent in five years, from 2013 to 2018, reaching $1.2 million this past December, according to Zillow. And Berkeley rent prices skyrocketed 54 percent during the same period. In the Bay Area, a family currently needs to earn $200,000 a year to afford a median-priced home.

In short, we have a housing emergency. California now ranks 49th in the nation in terms of the number of housing units per capita. It’s no wonder that our homelessness crisis continues to expand.

It’s also an environmental crisis. During the past several decades, suburban sprawl, coupled with little to no new housing in our cities, has fueled gas-guzzling super-commutes. According to a 2018 report by researchers at UC Berkeley and UC Davis, the single most important way for cities to reduce their carbon footprint by 2030 — which scientists say is the deadline for avoiding catastrophic climate change — is to build urban infill housing.

We need an “all-of-the-above” approach to address our housing crisis, including Berkeley’s missing middle plan. I’m also heartened that the Berkeley City Council members’ proposal includes important elements to avoid unintended consequences.

For example, it would exempt dangerous fire zones in the Berkeley hills. California’s devastating wildfires during the past few years have proven we must curb new home-building in what’s known as the wildland-urban interface.

The Berkeley missing middle plan also calls for anti-displacement measures to ensure that tenants and low-income residents aren’t kicked out of their homes to make way for new housing.

As Karen Chapple, faculty director of the Urban Displacement Project at UC Berkeley, rightly noted in a letter in support of the missing middle plan, “Zoning reform has the potential not just to address the housing crisis but also to become a form of restorative or even transformative justice. There is no more important issue for planners to tackle today.”

I look forward to the Berkeley City Council approving the missing middle study at its meeting on March 26. And I encourage all Bay Area cities to follow suit."
housing  california  2019  density  apartments  history  race  racism  sanfrancisco  berkeley  oakland  infilling 
march 2019 by robertogreco
Aftel Archive of Curious Scents
[https://www.yelp.com/biz/aftel-archive-of-curious-scents-berkeley ]

"Hi, I'm Mandy Aftel! I fell in love with natural aromatics more than twenty-five years ago, and I have had the privilege to live and work in their world ever since. In my practice of perfumery, I have curated thousands of gorgeous essences from all over the world, many of them antiques themselves. I have written 4 books about natural perfumes, and teach people how to create natural perfumes through my workbooks and in-studio classes."
senses  smells  berkeley  togo  via:derek  bayarea 
november 2018 by robertogreco
For Housing Affordability, California Must Amend its Constitution - Opinion | Political News | thebaycitybeacon.com
"This fall, California voters may have the opportunity to amend Proposition 13, one of the most regressive tax laws in the country. The 1978 initiative essentially freezes the assessed value of real estate at the time of sale—inevitably establishing and perpetuating wild inequities between the young and old, renters and landlords, immigrants and incumbents. How can California’s political “third rail” be reformed, albeit incrementally, with lasting, sustainable progress? There are several ways.

Evolve California is currently gathering signatures to place a measure on the 2018 ballot to allow re-assessments of commercial aka business properties—a move that could generate ~$10 billion a year for health care, education and other badly need investments in California society.

Another significant contributor to inequality, segregation, and the housing crisis stands unchallenged in 2018.

Article 34 of the California Constitution, enacted by voters in 1950, states that no cities, towns or counties may ”develop, construct or acquire” any “low-rent” housing “unless approved by a majority of qualified electors of the city, town or county” at the ballot box. Practically, this means our local governments and representatives are prevented from directly providing the homes struggling Californians need so direly today.

Article 34’s proponents intended to control the development of large, federally-funded public housing tower projects. The law also restricts local governments from efficiently building even mid-rise public housing or subsidizing low-income housing. A mid-century, single-story city building, or even a vacant lot, could become a five-story building with affordable rents and public services on the ground floor. Alas, we can’t really have that without an expensive ballot referendum and subsequent approval by a majority (or supermajority) of voters.

Moreover, the referendum process makes the provision of publicly-owned housing intractably slow. In California, prudent politicians tend refrain from placing affordable housing bonds on the ballot until they absolutely know the measure can win a supermajority of voters. When municipal coffers fill up with tax revenue or development fees, cities cannot use it to invest in modern mid-rise public housing directly, absent an expensive and risky Article 34-triggered election.

The crux of the issue is this: California’s landowners have become vastly more wealthy and powerful, by government fiat, at the expense of renters. This inequality is unsustainable. Homeowners receive exponentially more in public subsidies, and Proposition 13 tax rates disproportionately reward greater wealth and “incumbency” of property owners, but renters ultimately foot their landlords’ property tax bill. Not only do renters get little to no relief from this regressive system—because of Article 34, they are essentially forced to beg localized pockets of voters for the direct public provision of badly-needed affordable housing. Property owners, on the other hand, do not have to ask for their Mortgage Interest Deduction through a popular referendum every time they claim it.

Say it with me: public housing already exists. It exists largely not as shelter for the neediest, but as vestiges of historic inequality that abstractly, disproportionately rewards legacy homebuyers with secure asset wealth.

There have been concerted efforts to overturn this unfair system for almost as long as we’ve had it. Former Assembly Speaker Willie Brown led two unsuccessful efforts to repeal Article 34 in the ‘70s and ‘80s. The most recent effort, in 1992, was defeated before an entire generation of eligible voters was born, so the current electorate may feel differently about our status quo.

Perhaps its time has finally come.

Since 1950, California courts have whittled down Article 34’s power, and some cities work around the law by delegating the job of affordable housing construction to privately-run nonprofits. But given the severity and depth of our affordable housing shortage, California cannot afford more roadblocks to directly providing publicly-owned affordable housing.

To state the obvious, Article 34 also maintains racial and economic segregation. Requiring voter approval for the development of publicly-funded affordable rental housing means that racially and economically homogenous communities can effectively veto integration. The electorates of San Francisco, Oakland and Berkeley have consistently voted to approve low-income housing placed on the ballot at regular intervals. Compare the generosity of those voters to, say, communities in Marin County or Palo Alto—I can guarantee that the results will not surprise you.

Governing by popular referendum may sound ideal, but California’s experience with direct governance over the last 107 years has demonstrated that local pluralities of voters can sometimes succumb to fear, uncertainty, and outright animus towards marginalized groups.

If you think this is all ancient history, think again: in 1994, nearly 59% of California voters approved of Proposition 187, designed to bar undocumented people from accessing public services like health care and education, prior to it being ruled unconstitutional by the courts. More recently, California voters repudiated marriage equality by approving Proposition 8 in 2008, only for it also to be overturned by jurists. In 2016, California voters brought back the death penalty.

Occasionally, the state’s voters have been unwise enough to approve unconstitutional legislation, and federal courts have found such laws especially offensive when they discriminate against political minorities in the exercise of civil rights or use of public programs, as was the case with Prop 187. Unfortunately, the United States Supreme Court found no such violation by Article 34 of equal protection under the 14th Amendment in James v. Valtierra (1971).

Renters from Santa Clara and San Mateo counties sought to have Article 34 invalidated on the basis of racial and wealth discrimination. Instead, Justice Hugo Black, writing for the 6-3 majority found such mandatory referendums on low-rent and public housing to indicate a “devotion to democracy, not to bias, discrimination, or prejudice.” (If only!)

Article 34 of the California Constitution, much like the general political aversion to subsidized housing, is explicitly rooted in prejudice against poor people, people of color, and immigrants writ large. The history is stark and ugly, and it is high time for California to face it head-on. That history, as it unfolded in Oakland, will be the subject of Part 2 in this series."
housing  california  policy  racism  class  2018  1950  article34  inequality  segregation  race  proposition13  sanfrancisco  oakland  bayarea  publichousing  affordability  taxes  williebrown  berkeley 
june 2018 by robertogreco
New sculptures installed at Richmond Branch Library | Richmond District Blog
"To honor the first birthday of the renovated Richmond Branch Library, the SF Arts Commission recently installed two new sculptures in front of the building.

Entitled Touching Earth, the two disc shaped sculptures were created by artist Scott Donahue. The pieces are inspired by the transient nature of the Bay Area’s population in that everyone arrived here from elsewhere using different modes of travel. The artist himself initally rode into the Bay Area on a bicycle.

Located on either side of the walkway leading up to the library’s entrance on 9th Avenue, the sculptures are two concrete containers covered with bronze epoxy domes. On top of each dome is a relief map of the Bay Area.

The south side sculpture depicts the historical Bay Area, before there was any Golden Gate or Bay Bridges. Inset in the relief map are various small photos showing how people reached the Bay Area in the past: by foot, horse, ship, train or prairie schooner.

The north side relief sculpture shows a closer, more contemporary view of the Bay with the Richmond Library highlighted in the center. More modern methods of transportation are shown including a jet plane, a bicyclist, a ferry, cars and even the 38 Geary MUNI bus.

The pieces were commissioned as part of the Branch Library Improvement Program. Donahue’s proposal for the pieces was selected through a community-based process back in 2005.

Donahue got into some hot water last year when he was paid $196,000 by Berkeley’s public arts program to create two large statues honoring the history and daily life of the city of Berkeley. At the base of the statues were small medallions showing dogs doing what they do – biting each other, defecating, even having sex with each other.

Apparently in his original proposal to the Berkeley Civic Arts Commission, Donahue’s design didn’t show the tiny canine reliefs. Many Berkeley-ites were not thrilled with the artist’s irreverent, canine commentary on Berkeley life, nor the Commission’s oversight of it."
sfsh  richmonddistrict  sculpture  art  libraries  maps  mapping  sanfrancisco  berkeley  2010  bayarea  scottdonahue 
october 2017 by robertogreco
East Bay Yesterday by East Bay Yesterday on Apple Podcasts
"East Bay history podcast that gathers, shares & celebrate stories from Oakland, Berkeley, Richmond and other towns throughout Alameda and Contra Costa Counties."
eastbay  bayarea  oakland  berkeley  richmond  alameda  contracosta  podcasts  history 
august 2017 by robertogreco
Berkeley Forest School | Berkeley, California
"Berkeley Forest School is based on fundamental humanitarian principles, as well as respect for children and their ability to construct their own knowledge.

Children have the right to play, explore, and take risks, while conscious of their connection to the invigoratingly complex natural world we share.

Teachers support the rich wilderness of the children's imagination by facilitating their efforts in inquiry, investigation, and analysis.

We do not teach children what to think.
We cultivate experiences where children learn what it is to think for themselves: to develop their own ideas, and to test those ideas."

[See also:

"Forest Kindergartens Push Back Against Academic Focus For Young Kids"
https://ww2.kqed.org/news/2014/11/14/forest-kindergarten-play-nature-based-alternative/

"Best Options for a Forest School in the San Francisco Bay Area"
https://medium.com/@one_preschool/best-options-for-a-forest-school-in-the-san-francisco-bay-area-be8a3a7cba3c ]
schools  berkeley  forestschools  lianachavarín  heathertaylor  kindergarten  preschool 
may 2017 by robertogreco
Revolution Books
"Revolution Books is the bookstore about the world and for a radically new world. RB is a site of critical thinking like nowhere else: where people find the books and engagement with why the world is the horror it is today, and where people can discover the revolutionary way out of this madness, engaging with the path-breaking work of the revolutionary leader Bob Avakian and the movement for revolution. RB is needed more than ever."



"People come to Revolution Books from all over the world to find the books and the deep engagement with each other about why the world is the way it is and the possibility of a radically different way the world could be.

The world today, with all its horrors, holds the potential for something far better. To unlock that – at the foundation of RB – is the most advanced scientific theory and leadership for an actual revolution for the emancipation of humanity: the new synthesis of communism brought forward by the revolutionary leader, Bob Avakian.

RB is a bookstore with literature, history, science, art, philosophy, and revolutionary theory....a place of discovery and engagement. Scientific and poetic, wrangling and visionary. A bookstore at the center of a movement for revolution.

Humanity Needs Revolution.
Revolution Needs Revolution Books.
Revolution Books Needs You."
bookstores  books  berkeley  sanfrancisco  booksellers  bobavakian 
december 2016 by robertogreco
Girls Garage (@_girlsgarage) • Fotos y vídeos de Instagram
"Our Camp H design/build program for girls is expanding in a new space, with a new name: Girls Garage! Help us renovate the new space and open Fall 2016 with increased enrollment and programming.

Since 2013, our Camp H design/build program for girls ages 9-13 has been a smashing success, thanks to an amazing community of girls and families. Over 130 girls have come through our doors, most participating in multiple sessions. We have welded, built architecture, made furniture for the local women's shelter, designed doghouses, flown tetrahedron kites, done automotive repair, and much more.

"I'm a 10-year-old girl and I know how to weld. What can't I do?"

Now, we are so excited to expand the scope of Camp H in a new space and with a new name: Girls Garage. We have secured a 3600 sq ft commercial space in West Berkeley which will be the new home for Girls Garage. Starting Fall 2016, we will be able to offer 4 days per week of after-school programming, year-round, and 6 weeks of summer camps, increasing our enrollment by nearly 250%.

In order to open the doors of our new space with the quality and environment the girls deserve, we have many renovations and improvements to complete: replacing windows on the front brick facade, replacing carpet in the upstairs classroom, painting and refinishing walls, installing signage on the front of the building, replacing bathroom and kitchen fixtures, and of course, installing all of our furniture, fixtures, and machinery.

We have already received generous corporate support from Lenovo (laptops and hardware) and Ryobi (power tools), but need additional financial support to complete the build-out. As our core community of supporters, we invite you to join this new charge as we expand our Camp H program into Girls Garage: a space for girls and women to create and build.

Learn more about Camp H / Girls Garage here: http://camp-h.org/"
girls  christinajenkins  camph  projecth  emilypilloton  education  making  berkeley  girlsgarage  lcproject  openstudioproject  sfsh 
june 2016 by robertogreco
Vik's Chaat
"Viks Chaat has proudly been serving chaat for over 25 years. Viks offers many regional chaat dishes from different parts of India. Over 2000 dishes are served each day to customers coming from near and far.

Viks Chaat started out in 1989 as a small area of Viks Retail Store, located inside a warehouse in the commercial district of Berkeley. Over the years, its popularity grew and people began coming from miles around for Viks Chaat. In 2004, Viks Chaat expanded to accommodate customers who were lining up for the various Indian savory snacks.

In 2009, Viks Chaat & Market moved to a new location, two blocks south of its original location. The new location is larger and brighter than its previous location, yet aesthetically is still a warehouse.

Viks Chaat is a family-run business dedicated to preserving the tradition of eating chaat using fresh ingredients and making each dish as it is ordered. Viks has proudly served fresh, traditional dishes for over 25 years, and refuses to compromise quality. Produce is chopped daily, we knead dough every morning, and each samosa is prepared by hand, all so that customers enjoy chaat the way it should be…fresh.

Amod Chopra and his family are the force behind Viks Chaat & Market in Berkeley, California. He was born in Mumbai and spent most of his childhood in different parts of India. He moved to California with his family in the 1980’s and has since been involved in his family’s business. In 1989, Viks Chaat opened in a 200-sq. ft. room in the front of their distribution warehouse. It has grown over the years into a well-known destination, bringing customers from all over the bay area and beyond. Many of the dishes at Viks come from Amod’s childhood memories and return visits to India."

[See also: http://www.yelp.com/biz/viks-chaat-berkeley ]
berkeley  food  indian  chaat  via:carwaiseto 
march 2016 by robertogreco
Greater Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life
"Our Mission

The Greater Good Science Center studies the psychology, sociology, and neuroscience of well-being, and teaches skills that foster a thriving, resilient, and compassionate society.

Based at the University of California, Berkeley, the GGSC is unique in its commitment to both science and practice: Not only do we sponsor groundbreaking scientific research into social and emotional well-being, we help people apply this research to their personal and professional lives. Since 2001, we have been at the fore of a new scientific movement to explore the roots of happy and compassionate individuals, strong social bonds, and altruistic behavior—the science of a meaningful life. And we have been without peer in our award-winning efforts to translate and disseminate this science to the public.

We have pursued this mission through the following activities, which are supported by people like you:

Greater Good, our online magazine, is home to a rich array of award-winning media, including articles, videos, quizzes, and podcasts—all available for free. With nearly five million annual readers, the research-based stories, tools, and tips on the site make cutting-edge research practical and accessible to the general public, especially parents, educators, health professionals, business leaders, and policy makers.

Greater Good in Action is a clearinghouse of the best research-based practices for fostering happiness, resilience, kindness, and connection. Synthesizing hundreds of scientific studies, it presents each practice in a step-by-step format that’s easy to navigate, digest, and act on.

The Science of Happiness, our free online course, is taught by the GGSC’s Dacher Keltner and Emiliana Simon-Thomas, who lead students through a 10-week exploration of what it means to lead a happy and meaningful life. Students engage with some of the most provocative and practical lessons from a variety of disciplines, discovering how this science can be applied to their own lives. More than 300,000 students from around the world have enrolled in the course to date; evidence suggests that it boosts well-being and reduces stress.

The GGSC Education Program supports the well-being of students, teachers, and school leaders through a variety of activities, including Greater Good Education articles that cover new trends in social-emotional learning and contemplative practice in education. The program also runs an annual Summer Institute for Educators, which equips education professionals with social-emotional learning tools that benefit themselves and their students, and cultivate a positive school climate.

GGSC Events bring together leading scientists, educators, and members of the public to discuss concrete strategies for promoting the greater good. Our Science of a Meaningful Life seminar series has included presentations by luminaries like Paul Ekman, Jon Kabat-Zinn, Barbara Fredrickson, and Philip Zimbardo, many of which can be watched in our video archive.

The Expanding the Science and Practice of Gratitude project supports the scientific research and promotes evidence-based practices of gratitude in schools, workplaces, homes, and communities. This initiative is supported with funding from the John Templeton Foundation and run in collaboration with the University of California, Davis.

Fellowships to UC Berkeley undergraduate and graduate students are the flagship of the Center’s scientific initiatives. The GGSC’s fellowship program supports scholars whose work relates to our mission, from across a broad spectrum of academic disciplines. Previous GGSC fellows have gone on to top research and teaching positions at universities nationwide, providing a significant boost to the science of compassion, resilience, altruism, and happiness.

These programs are supported by donors large and small—and we hope you’ll consider signing up as a member. You can also sign up for our free newsletter to receive updates on our work.

To learn more about the GGSC, please download our brochure, which includes our “Six Habits of Happiness.”

Our Core Beliefs

• Compassion is a fundamental human trait, with deep psychological and evolutionary roots. By creating environments that foster cooperation and altruism, we help nurture the positive side of human nature.
• Happiness is not simply dependent on a person’s genes. It is a set of skills that can be taught, and, with practice, developed over time.
• Happiness and altruism are intertwined—doing good is an essential ingredient to being happy, and happiness helps spur kindness and generosity.
• Science should do more than help us understand human behavior and emotion in the abstract; it should be applied toward improving people’s personal and professional lives.
• Studying the roots of good, healthy, and positive behavior is just as important as studying human pathologies. To promote individual and social well-being, science must examine how people overcome difficult circumstances and how they develop positive emotions and relationships.
• Individual well-being promotes social well-being, and social well-being promotes individual well-being. The well-being of society as a whole can best be achieved by providing information, tools, and skills to those people directly responsible for shaping the well-being of others."
via:aimeegiles  education  happiness  psychology  research  science  neuroscience  sociology  well-being  resilience  compassion  society  ucberkeley  berkeley  ggsc  greatergoodsciencecenter  paulekman  jonkabat-zinn  barbarafredrickson  philipzimbardo  ucdavis  altruism  kindness  generosity  behavior  humans  human  life  living  cooperation 
january 2016 by robertogreco
'No School in the Country Has Ever Done it'
[See also:
“Latino School Segregation: The Big Education Problem That No One Is Talking About”
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/latino-school-segregation_561d70a5e4b050c6c4a34118 ]

"Mario Koran: Based on your research, what impact does neighborhood schooling tend to have on school districts’ integration efforts?

Gary Orfield: When you have neighborhood schools in a city that has unequal and segregated neighborhoods, Latino and black kids end up in schools that are segregated by race and poverty and sometimes by language, and tend to perform much worse.

And white and Asian kids tend to end up in middle-class schools with a majority of middle-class kids, and more experienced teachers and stronger curriculum, higher level of competition. So it just perpetuates the inequality.

If we had fair neighborhoods, it would be OK. But we don’t. It’s why we did the desegregation efforts in the first place.

Now, if you have a choice plan that doesn’t have basic civil rights requirements attached to it, it can make segregation worse. We did a book called “Educational Delusions?” about choice plans that can make things worse, and how you can make them better.

Basically, a fair choice plan has a certain number of elements, and it expands opportunity and integration. And those include free transportation. They include good choices. They include fair parent information and a fair method of selecting the kids, and active recruitment of the kids from all parts of the community.

Free transportation is essential. Otherwise you’re just giving choice on the basis of social class.

The book included case studies of numerous places, including some places that have figured out modern ways to integrate, including Louisville and Berkeley.

(Note: Under the current system, if San Diego Unified parents want to send their kids to a school outside their neighborhood, they can submit a choice application. But offers are limited to available space, and in most cases transportation falls on parents.)

Mario Koran: What city in the country do you think has figured it out the best?

Gary Orfield: Well, Berkeley’s worth looking at. Louisville. There are regional magnet schools in Connecticut that we’ve worked with quite a lot.

Nobody’s got the whole thing together because basically there has been no pressure to do anything about this since the Reagan years.

Mario Koran: Why is that? What’s been the biggest stumbling blocks holding school districts back?

Gary Orfield: The biggest stumbling block, in many ways, was the United States Supreme Court, which has had an anti-civil rights majority now for over a quarter-century and has dismantled most of the desegregation plans in the country.

The former chief justice who was appointed by Ronald Reagan, William Rehnquist, was opposed the [Brown v. Board of Education] decision as a clerk in the Supreme Court during the Brown case. He never voted for a school desegregation case ever.

The Supreme Court has pushed us backward in this area. It’s no accident that we’re where we are now. California used to have requirements that went beyond the federal requirements. There was a prop passed, called Prop. 1 in the 1980s, that weakened California’s desegregation requirements.

The major funding source for desegregation was eliminated in Ronald Reagan’s first budget.

Mario Koran: What was the funding source?

Gary Orfield: It was called the Emergency School Aid Act. It was the federal desegregation assistance money. It had hundreds of millions of dollars. It was all voluntary, and school districts loved it. It funded the creation of a lot of magnet schools in the country.

Mario Koran: I’ve noticed that we all tend to say that we like and value diversity, but when it comes to actually integrating schools, it can sort of feel uncomfortable, right?

Gary Orfield: It is uncomfortable! There’s no comfortable way to get out of a racial catastrophe. But it works. And people appreciate it when it’s done well.

Desegregation done the right way is a win-win. It’s not taking something from somebody and giving it to somebody else. It’s expanding the opportunity and preparation of everybody. It’s not a miracle. It’s not a cure-all. It’s just a whole lot better than segregation.

We did surveys of the parents and students at Louisville that are in the book, and they’ve had desegregation in almost all their schools, city and suburb now for 45 years. And they voted to keep it. And when the Supreme Court knocked down their old plan, they came up with a new one to keep it.

I don’t know if you read our Resegregating California study, but California is the worst place in the country for Latino students in terms of isolation by ethnicity and they are in extremely impoverished schools on average.

Mario Koran: That’s interesting, because now we have a problem with segregating Latinos, but it’s a new challenge because Latinos make up the largest subgroup in California. So how does that change the integration dynamic?

Gary Orfield: It means that we have a much more complex reality. Most of the black students in California are now in schools which on average have twice as many Latinos as blacks. So black students are actually isolated within the schools of another disadvantaged minority group – or a majority group – with Latinos becoming majority group. So it’s more complicated.

We have four major races in California. If you combine the African-Americans and Latinos and compare them with the whites and Asians, they are different worlds of educational opportunity. Whites and Asians are 10 times as likely to be in the top quintile of high schools in California.

Mario Koran: In your mind, what’s the single strongest piece of evidence that we can point to to say that integration works?

Gary Orfield: For the Supreme Court Parents Involved decision, we did a summary of a half-century of research on school desegregation. And did a brief that was signed by 553 researchers from all over the United States, and basically what the research shows – and the research was checked by a group of about 120 of the leading scholars in the United States – basically that if you go to an integrated school, you get a better set of opportunities, you get connected with different networks, you have a better chance of graduating, you have a better chance of going to college, you have a better chance of completing college, you have a better chance of being employed in a diverse labor force as an adult, you’re more likely to live and work in a diverse setting.

The test scores results are significant, but they are not the major result. The major results are life chances.

Including – what nobody talks about – for the white students, who are now a small minority in Southern California. They learn how to function effectively in a diverse setting, which they badly need, because they’re going to be a smaller and smaller minority in the future of Southern California. They’re less than a quarter of the students between Los Angeles and the border.

You can’t really learn how to function very effectively in a diverse, multiracial culture in segregated neighborhoods, with segregated schools.

Again, desegregation is not a miracle. There are no miracles. You know educational research. Every time somebody claims one you have to dig into the data because it’s almost always funny.

And neighborhood schools, most school districts went that way 20 years ago, 25 years ago when the federal desegregation orders were eliminated. They went toward neighborhood schools and unfair choice plans.

Both of those produce self-perpetuating inequalities for black and Latino students.

You can’t get ready for UC in a school that doesn’t have good college preparation courses taught at the appropriate level, in classes with students who are ready to learn something.

Mario Koran: What constitutes a good choice plan?

Gary Orfield: The basic argument is we knew how not to do choice a long time ago. Fifty years ago. And we learned lessons in the 1970s about how to do magnet schools the right way. And then when the courts stopped looking, we forgot all of those things. And the result of that is schools are becoming more and more unequal.

We just did a study in Buffalo, N.Y. in response to a civil rights complaint to the Office of Civil Rights about the unfairness of the choice plan there.

We found that in a place that used to have one of the best magnet school plans in the country and was highly integrated, has changed. The system has declined, the quality has declined, but the unfairness has just mushroomed. The very best schools get very few students from the segregated neighborhoods.

Right now there’s a major controversy between the Office of Civil Rights and the Buffalo school board, whether they’re going to implement all of the recommendations they made on how to correct this. If you look at the recommendations, you can see the kinds of things that need to be paid attention to.

Mario Koran: So it doesn’t sound like you’re convinced about neighborhood schools …

Gary Orfield: I can’t tell you how many hundreds of places I’ve been to or that have sent to me a beautiful glossy plan that says, “We know how to make segregated schools equal.” It’s usually called “The Plan for Excellence,“ or “The Intense Focus Plan” or something. It’s a different name in every town.

Everybody says they know how to do it. Everybody says they know how to make segregated schools equal. No school district in the country has ever done it, to the best of my knowledge.

Now I’ve been asking for people to tell me one example, and nobody has been able to come up with that example. Even the people who testify against integration all over the county. Just tell me one place where segregation has worked.

You can’t find any. You can find individual schools where they score very well on certain standardized tests, but that’s rare and it often doesn’t last. But you can’t find schools … [more]
sandiego  sdusd  mariokoran  2015  schools  education  neighborhoodschools  segregation  race  ethnicity  california  history  civilrights  desegregation  diversity  schoolchoice  magnetschools  inequality  emergencyschoolaidact  ronaldreagan  williamrehnquist  scotus  berkeley  louisville  resegregation  garyorfield  buffalo  supremecourt  us  connecticut 
november 2015 by robertogreco
BOMB Magazine — Etel Adnan by Lisa Robertson
"EA: … Galleries wait for artists to be recognized and then they all solicit the same ones. That happened to me, but I had to say no, because I can’t produce. I can paint, but I can’t produce. I always have done that, even when I was younger. Visual art is big industry; lots of money moves around, which is okay, it’s vital. But it’s also a bit of a heartbreak—I wish this had happened, let’s say, twenty years ago. It’s a nice feeling to have your work appreciated, but it’s almost a fashion for women to be recognized late in life. Agnes Martin, for example. It’s a trend, but we hope it will change."



"LR I’ve been rereading your books in the past two weeks, three or four of them. I read this beautiful line in Seasons this morning: “Women are keepers of their own story therefore they are historians.” I put that in relation to images in your work. Lately, I have been thinking a lot about images—about how the image works in Baudelaire, for example. It’s not only a visual or optical event, it’s happening across all the senses. It’s a poly-sensual perceiving.

EA Yes!


LR So I have two questions. One is about the relationship between the image in poetry and the image in painting, and the other one, which might not be related to the first, is about women’s images. In an interview with Steve McQueen in The Guardian about his film Twelve Years a Slave, he said, “Some images have never been seen before. I needed to see them.” It resonated for me in relationship to your work. You are making images that have not been seen. Some of that might have to do with the fact that you are making women’s images. Do you feel that?

EA Until now at least, a woman’s life, her psyche . . . we don’t like the word essence anymore. As women, of course, we are different from each other as people, but we are also different from men. Or we have been up until now. So we have our own images. We’ve had little girls’ lives, so we carry that. When I grew up in Beirut, there weren’t many sports for boys or girls, but certainly girls were aware of being little girls, of being in. This idea of the outside and the inside works very strongly in women’s lives. In fact, women are rooted somewhere, they are stronger physically. Women are containers—the baby is in their belly; making love is receiving. This container contains hearts and stomachs. Images are, in one way, what we receive, but they are also the tools with which we think. To make images, you think with them, somehow. You mentioned Baudelaire. For Baudelaire, images work not like shapes, but like ideas made visible. He was particularly interested in the encounter between what we call the inner world and the outer world. And poetry deals magnificently with that. It is one of the major definitions of poetry. It addresses that relationship between what we call the subject and the object, which melt in what we call consciousness. Sometimes we transcribe this state of mind into words and call it a poem or a text. The same is true for the other arts. Writing is a very mysterious activity. When you write, you say things that would not have occurred to your mind otherwise. I don’t know if the fact that we don’t use paper and ink anymore affects writing. On a computer it’s a new situation.

LR Do you write on a computer?

EA My poetry is not long. I write in little paragraphs and they pile up, so I do it by hand. But I am more and more obligated to answer letters or emails, so then I use a computer. But to go back to what an image is—

LR That’s my real question. (laughter)


Afternoon Poem, 1968, ink and watercolor on paper, 8 1/2 × 96 inches.
EA For example, I look at this table in front of me. Somebody over there, however, may look at it and not see it. Seeing is an activity; it is not passive.

LR The last sentence I read before I got off the metro on my way here was, “Behind an image there’s the image.”

EA There are layers of images—that’s what I meant, very simply. There is thickness. Vision is multidimensional and simultaneous. You can think, see, see beyond: you can do all these things at the same time. Your psyche, your brain catches up. Some people today say that an image is not necessarily a clear figuration of something; it could be like a blurred abstract drawing, like a sliding door.

LR An event in perceiving.

EA Yes, an event. It is a speed that you catch. Images are not still. They are moving things. They come, they go, they disappear, they approach, they recede, and they are not even visual—ultimately they are pure feeling. They’re like something that calls you through a fog or a cloud.

LR So they are immaterial, in a way.

EA That’s it! They are immaterial in essence. But they could be strongly defined, or they could be fleeting, almost like a ghost of things or of feelings going by. So the word image is very elastic. It’s a very rich concept. Although we are bombarded with images, our culture is anti-image. We think we don’t like it; it’s not fashionable. That is why Surrealism exists: it intends to amplify the image, to force us to see it. Andy Warhol understood that we are surrounded by so many things, and people, that we do not see them. We are rather blinded by them. So he forced our attention on soup cans and Marilyn Monroe.

On an other level, there are also different clarities. Some things are not meant to be clear; obscurity is their clarity. We should not underestimate obscurity. Obscurity is as rich as luminosity."



"EA I went to Catholic schools all my life. There were no other schools in Lebanon. We had religion around all the time. I’m lucky—I never believed in catechism or any of that. I was always a dissident without effort, at a distance from all the things the nuns were saying. I never liked saints. What touched me was their speaking of revelation, even the word itself. That always made sense to me. We owe life to the existence of the sun; therefore light is a very profound part of our makeup. It’s spiritual, in the way that even DNA is spiritual. What we call “spirit” is energy. It’s the definition of life, in one sense. Light, as an object, as a phenomenon, is magnificent. I am talking to you and the light coming in through the window has already changed. You go on the street and you look at the sky and it tells you what time it is. We are dealing with it constantly, and obscurity is also maybe its own light, because it shows you things. Obscurity is not lack of light. It is a different manifestation of light. It has its own illumination."



"LR One of the things I really appreciate in your poems is this very quick and subtle shift of register in the language. So many different idiolects enter into the stanzas or paragraphs that you write, which I actually think of as images in the way we were discussing.

EA What do you mean by “idiolects”?

LR Well, extreme colloquialisms right up against much more subtle, highly literary language.

EA Oh, I don’t realize that I’m doing that. That’s not a decision. I write as things come to my mind, maybe because I love philosophy, but I don’t love theory. There is a big difference. Not that I don’t respect theory, but I am incapable of writing it or even reading it."



"LR That is a beautiful book.

EA Howe manages to show how you should read a writer. The writer is unique, but is also part of a context. You can only approximate what a writer might have said. Philosophy is freer now, and for that reason Heidegger could say that the great philosophers were the poets. That a real, trained philosopher like Heidegger would come to that is very important to poets. Poets were afraid to think and philosophers were afraid to let go, to let loose and speak of themselves as part of their thinking. This boundary has been broken down. I love contemporary poetry because it moves between what we call poetry and what we call philosophy. It joins these fields and makes writing more natural, as in how it is lived in the person. We don’t separate thinking from feeling in real life, so why should we separate it in writing? The life of the mind is one and the boundaries and the categories are useful tools. We made them realities, but they are not realities—they are only tools, categories.

This existed before. In Hölderlin, for example, there is a lot of Romantic German thinking. I’d say Ezra Pound is more of a philosopher than we realize. There is a great presence of thinking in his poetry. Of course there is thinking when you write, but I mean thinking as such—

LR Approaching a problem.

EA That’s it! I find it in Pound. And there is political thinking in Charles Olson, whom I like very much. There is what they call proprioception, which comes very close to thinking—in Robert Creeley, for instance."



"LR The love of the world?

EA Yes. I don’t call it “nature”; I call it “the world.”

LR Well, what is the difference between them?

EA It’s historical. By nature we always mean landscapes. Language! The world is really the word; it’s the fact that it is.

LR Its isness.

EA It is and I love that. It distracted me from other forms of love. At the end of my life, I realize that the love of a person is a key to the world. Nothing matters more. To love a person in particular is the most difficult form of love, because it involves somebody else’s freedom. That is where misunderstandings come in; two people don’t have necessarily the same timing. You may love books and you may love paintings. They have their own technical difficulties, you fight with them, but you are the master of that fight.

LR Are you talking about time and timing? I mean, if you love a book or a painting, it’s more or less stable.

EA At least you are on top; it depends more on you. But a person has priorities, his or her problems, his or her character—you can’t control that and you don’t want to anyway. I mean, your freedom … [more]
eteladnan  lisarobertson  interviews  2014  obscurity  writing  light  art  gender  women  shadows  night  nighttime  joannekyger  philosophy  canon  idiolects  colloquialisms  language  literature  poetry  poems  susanhowe  nietzsche  heidegger  nature  balzac  baudelaire  love  friendship  time  timing  relationships  invention  making  images  thinking  howwethink  howwework  howwewrite  posthumanism  beirut  lebanon  paris  berkeley  ucberkeley 
april 2014 by robertogreco
NIAD Art Center - Empowering Artists with Disabilities in Richmond California : NIAD Art Center
"For 30 years, NIAD Art Center (National Institute of Art & Disabilities) has been offering a studio arts program to adults with developmental and other physical disabilities in Richmond, California.

NIAD’s program mission has four equal elements:

1. To develop the capacity for creative expression in people with developmental and other physical disabilities, increasing their sense of personal identity and dignity.
2. It provides a gallery and other exhibition opportunities for their work, thereby validating their art, enhancing their self-esteem and providing earnings for their personal use.
3. It fosters socialization and inclusion through field trips to museums, art galleries, artists’ studios and community events.
4. It increases the public’s understanding of the artistic ability of people with disabilities.

The Center operates an open studio with each client focusing on their own art production and career. Up to 40 adults per day work with five professional artists creating visual art in ceramics, fiber art, printmaking, painging, sculpture, mixed media, and drawing. The teachers/mentors facilitate learning skills, but leave the artistic decisions to each individual client. The studio environment focuses on art creation while also building the independent living skills of observation, concentration, decision-making, project management, cooperation, and exploration.

Frequent trips to galleries, museums, and artists’ studios supplement material presented at NIAD and strengthen client confidence in interacting with the public. All art materials are supplied by NIAD. The art that is produced is shown at our three on-site gallery spaces and on our website, as well as in other galleries and other exhibition spaces. When art is sold, the artist receives 50% of the sale.

NIAD was co-founded in 1982 by Elias Katz, Ph.D., clinical psychologist, and the late Florence Ludins-Katz, artist and educator, after ten years of pioneering work in the field. NIAD has received the Helen Crocker Award from the San Francisco Foundation, the Vineyards Award from the Golden Gate Chapter of the National Association of Fund-Raising Executives, and a citation from the California State Council on Developmental Disabilities and Advocacy, Inc.
NIAD receives funding from the Regional Center of the East Bay to pay for the clients’ participation in the program. Unfortunately, this only covers approximately two-thirds of the program expenses. Individuals, public and private foundations and corporations, supplement the proceeds from art sales and special events. Please consider expressing your support by stopping by our galleries or donating online."
art  disability  disabilities  richmond  bayarea  berkeley  openstudio  openstudioproject  timothybuckwalter 
june 2013 by robertogreco
Brand Relaunch at JohnMcneilStudio
"On the occasion of their 50th anniversary, The Berkeley School wanted to refresh their brand positioning to capture the elementary school’s inventive approach to education. We created a marketing and branding effort that included a new identity, website, messaging, original photography, print collateral, signage, art installations and a new color palette for the buildings. All these efforts mapped to the theme: “What matters in education matters in life.” We also developed a digital communication strategy deeply rooted in social media engagement. Through the “Bulletin Board” blogs, we helped bridge the gap between the classroom and a student’s home life."
design  branding  theberkeleyschool  johnmcneil  berkeley  logos  evolvinglogos  2012  schools  schooldesign  identity  marketing  tbs 
may 2013 by robertogreco
Critical Making | materials protocols and culture
"Critical Making will operationalize and critique the practice of “making” through both foundational literature and hands on studio culture. As hybrid practitioners, students will develop fluency in readily collaging and incorporating a variety of physical materials and protocols into their practice. With design research as a lens, students will envision and create future computational experiences that critically explore social and culturally relevant technological themes such as community, privacy, environment, education, economics, energy, food, biology, democracy, activism, healthcare, social justice, etc.

While no previous technical knowledge is required to take this course, class projects will involve basic programing, electronic circuity, and digital fabrication design. While tutorials and instruction will be provided, students will be expected to develop basic skills in each of these areas in order to complete the course projects. The course will result in a final public show of student work.

The course goals are:

• develop a critical understanding of emerging making technologies and their role within the current cultural and social context
• establish proficiency with the fundamental concepts, methods, and practices of physical modeling, sketching, form giving, electronic prototyping, and hands on making across a range of materials
• improve students ability to make expressive, physical, interactive objects that critique and advance computing culture through the production of making and artifact creation
• advance the communication and presentation skill of students through the process of the studio critique

projects

This is a studio class with time devoted to lecture, discussion, practice activities, design worksessions, and critique of student work. This course will consist of two Provocations and a Final Project demonstrating a functional interactive object set within a real life context and scenario. There will also be a series of Field Activities and in class sessions that are incuded as a portion of your particpation grade.

readings

Readings will be assigned throughout the semester. Everyone is expected to read the readings. One or two people will be selected for each reading to prepare a class presentation. Each student is expected to engage in class discussions when readings are assigned. This counts towards your class participation grade.

zip.crit

Most classes will begin with a zip.crit. A zip.crit is a rapid crit of an interface, object, design, etc. We will be rotating through the class roster and choosing one person to do a zip.crit each class. That person will select an interface, object, design, instructable, kickstarter, toy, etc. At the beginning of class that person will briefly introduce the object, interface, design to us. The class will collectively critique the artifact.

evaluation

Work and performance in the course will be evaluated after each Provocation and the Final Project. In addition, the process of exploration is as important as the final product, so it is important that students manage time well and devote time to working on the assignments during the course of a week. If class time is given as a worksession and is not put to good use, students’ grades will be penalized. For assignments done in teams, students will be graded on individual contributions as well as synthesis with the team. Work that is late will be decremented in grade.

rules of engagement

One of the main learning exercises in this course is the critique. We will be building this skill throughout the semester Each of the assignments will be critiqued in class.

Be there!

Critique days mandatory attendance. If you are not in class or late, we will deduct from your attendance grade. There will be no exceptions.

Attendance of all classes is mandatory. You are allowed one absence for the semester without penalty (except critique days); thereafter you will receive zero credit for the missed studio. To receive an additional excused absence, you must ask in advance, and receive an acknowledgment from the instructor.

Excusable absences include family emergencies, job interviews, and presenting at a conference. It does not include wanting to leave early for long weekend or vacation. To receive credit for attendance, you must arrive on time. No late assignments will be accepted

Be active!

During the in class critique everyone is expected to be engaged in the discussion. Assignments, timely attendance, and in-class and team participation are a critical part of the grade. Bringing examples from outside of the class is considered to be an assignment and is also important.

Be attentive!

No laptops, phones, electronics out or used during critique and at other selected parts of class.

grading criteria

participation in assignments
good use of class time: attendance, critiques, (NO multitasking)
problem selection
rigorous design explorations
quality of craftsmanship and level of completion
quality of the team’s reflection and communication about a design solution and process
For projects done in teams, students will be graded on individual contributions as well as synthesis with the team.
Work that is late will be decremented in grade.

PARTICIPATION 20%
PROVOCATION 1 20%
PROVOCATION 2 20%
FINAL PROVOCATION 40%"

[See also: http://www.paulos.net/
http://www.krisfallon.com/
http://www.isopoddesign.com/ ]
education  sustainability  making  classideas  syllabus  2013  ericpaulos  krisfallon  chrismeyers  environment  biology  democracy  activism  healthcare  socialjustice  studioculture  openstudio  openstudioproject  makers  berkeley  bayarea  programming  coding  computing  electronics  digitalfabrication  technology  learning  lcproject  kickstarter  instructables  prototyping  glvo  edg  srg  syllabi 
may 2013 by robertogreco
Eric Paulos
"Eric Paulos is the Director of the Living Environments Lab and an Assistant Professor in the Berkeley Center for New Media (BCNM) with a faculty appointment within the Electrical Engineering Computer Science Department at UC Berkeley. Previously, Eric held the Cooper-Siegel Associate Professor Chair in the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University where he was faculty within the Human-Computer Interaction Institute with courtesy faculty appointments in the Robotics Institute and in the Entertainment Technology Center. Prior to CMU, Eric was Senior Research Scientist at Intel Research in Berkeley, California where he founded the Urban Atmospheres research group - challenged to employ innovative methods to explore urban life and the future fabric of emerging technologies across public urban landscapes. His areas of expertise span a deep body of research territory in urban computing, sustainability, green design, environmental awareness, social telepresence, robotics, physical computing, interaction design, persuasive technologies, and intimate media. Eric is a leading figure in the field of urban computing, coining the term in 2004, and a regular contributor, editorial board member, and reviewer for numerous professional journals and conferences. Eric received his PhD in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from UC Berkeley where he helped launch a new robotic industry by developing some of the first internet tele-operated robots including Space Browsing helium filled blimps and Personal Roving Presence devices (PRoPs).

Eric is also the founder and director of the Experimental Interaction Unit and a frequent collaborator with Mark Pauline of Survival Research Laboratories. Eric's work has been exhibited at the InterCommunication Center (ICC) in Japan, Ars Electronica, ISEA, SIGGRAPH, the Dutch Electronic Art Festival (DEAF), SFMOMA, the Chelsea Art Museum, Art Interactive, LA MOCA, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, the ZKM, Southern Exposure, and a performance for the opening of the Whitney Museum's 1997 Biennial Exhibition."

[via: http://make.berkeley.edu/ ]
ericpaulos  berkeley  bayarea  interaction  markpauline  technology  making  physicalcomputing  interactiondesign  ix  ux  persuasivetechnologies  intimatemedia  media  newmedia  sustainability  ambient  urban  urbanism  urbancomputing  computing  glvo  srg  edg  citizenscience 
may 2013 by robertogreco
Kris Fallon
"I am a PhD candidate in the Department of Film & Media at UC Berkeley with a Designated Emphasis in New Media through the Berkeley Center for New Media.  Beyond my two ‘homes’ here on campus I also work with the Townsend Center for the Humanities on their film series and as a Graduate Student Researcher at the CITRIS Data & Democracy Initiative.

Research

My research looks at documentary practices across a range of media, from photography and film to data visualization and other digital forms.  I’m interested in the different ways we represent the world to ourselves and try to persuade others to share this same view.  My dissertation looks specifically at the collision of documentary film and digital media in the United States post 9/11.  I demonstrate that the political conflict of the Bush Era pushed activists and artists to experiment with a range of tools that blended image making with other technologies social networks, games, virtual environments and data analytics."

[via: http://make.berkeley.edu/ ]
krisfallon  bayarea  film  documentary  filmmaking  socialnetworks  games  gaming  images  dataanalytics  berkeley  photography  newmedia  glvo  edg  srg 
may 2013 by robertogreco
IsoBots
"Welcome to my robotics site, first a little about myself, I am a product designer and educator. As a product designer I have had the opportunity to work on a variety of projects including concept automobiles, electric vehicles, medical equipment, exhibit design, wearable computers and toys. Although I am a certifiable car nut and lover of cutting edge technology, my favorite projects are toys. I love creating toys that might become a child's treasured object, I look back on my favorite toys that I had as a kid and can clearly see how they allowed me to develop my imagination. My goal is to give today's kids the opportunity to learn how things work and make working robots! My partner Anne Mayoral and I developed the ArtBots to implement this goal. Many times it is the first time the girl or boy has actually constructed something that actually works! The pride on the young makers face is priceless and the successful completion of the working bot instills confidence which is needed to encourage further engagement. I feel that this encouragement is missing in so many of today's toys and games. We have created several generations of kids that can turn on and off toys, have excellent hand eye coordination but lack in the knowledge and even the curiosity of how stuff works.

I reside in San Francisco and spend my free time tinkering with British cars, old motorcycles, RC gliders and building various robotic creatures. I teach at the Academy of Art University in the Industrial Design Department. I also run an after school robotics class for seven to nine year olds called ArtBots."

[via: http://make.berkeley.edu/ ]
robotics  robots  youth  kids  education  bayarea  sanfrancisco  making  chrismeyer  criticalmaking  makers  design  learning  toys  toydesign  toymaking  glvo  edg  srg  isobots  berkeley 
may 2013 by robertogreco
Studio H: From Bertie to Berkeley: The next generation of Studio H
"After three years of living, teaching, and building in rural Bertie County in eastern North Carolina, Project H will be moving the headquarters of our Studio H high school design/build program to REALM Charter School in Berkeley, California this summer. This decision comes after months of deliberation, planning, and negotiation; please read on for the whole story of both our departure from Bertie and launch at REALM…"

"Four weeks before we launched the first academic year of Studio H in August 2010, political tensions between the school district’s board and administration forced our forward-thinking superintendent out of his position (and out of town)."

"After two full school years, our program remains unsupported by the school administration despite our role as full-time teachers within the school system, steadfast support from the community, and the quality of the work our students have delivered."

[ http://us1.campaign-archive2.com/?u=b359a93f0f55fe47d363e6fd8&id;=06ea98c471 ]
northcarolina  policy  victordiaz  realmcharterschool  emilypilloton  education  politics  berkeley  2012  projecth  studioh  bertiecounty  projecthdesign 
august 2012 by robertogreco
Mission Possible SF
Comprehensive portrait of the Mission, really worth a closer look (and thought). Love the orientation too.
cartography  maps  mission  sanfrancisco  design  census  berkeley  geography  coffee  gangs  population  noise  via:TomC 
june 2012 by robertogreco
Mario Savio: Sproul Hall Steps, December 2, 1964 - YouTube
"There is a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can't take part; you can't even passively take part, and you've got to put your bodies upon the gears and upon the wheels, upon the levers, upon all the apparatus, and you've got to make it stop. And you've got to indicate to the people who run it, to the people who own it, that unless you're free, the machine will be prevented from working at all!"

[Via stonecast, see here: http://www.savio.org/who_was_mario.html ]

[More here: http://tinyurl.com/3b46o2 ]
mariosavio  politics  activism  freedom  anarchism  libertarianism  berkeley  history  1964  protest  themachine  organizations  bureaucracy  democracy  leadership 
november 2011 by robertogreco
Errol Morris: Profiles: "Predilection", by Mark Singer [From the New Yorker, February 6, 1989]
"I did enter Princeton actually thinking I was going to get a doctorate. I was wrong…big fights with my adviser…was supposed to be concentrating on the history of physics…But the classes were always full of 14-year-old Chinese prodigies, w/ hands in air - 'Call on me! Call on me!' I couldn't do it.…It turns out I was a problem, but at least I wasn't a drudge, and that school was filled with drudges…

…Berkeley was just a world of pedants.…truly shocking. I spent 2 or 3 years in the philosophy program. I have very bad feelings about it." His own flaw, he believes, was that he was "an odd combination of the academic & the prurient." While he was supposed to be concentrating on philosophy of science, his attention became diverted by an extracurricular interest in the insanity plea…"
errolmorris  unschooling  deschooling  highereducation  highered  learning  schooling  ivyleague  berkeley  princeton  teaching  messiness  self-directedlearning  education  1989  dropouts 
july 2011 by robertogreco
peterme.com: Way more about paths at UC Berkeley than you'd ever want to read.
"For shame!

There's another interesting development. Look at the center of the first birdseye photo, and the bottom-right of the second. In the first, there's a wide dirt path cutting across the corner. In the second, there's a darker green patch, showing where it's been re-sod.

For some reason, Berkeley would rather spend it's money reinforcing it's poor landscape architecture with barriers and re-sodding, then recognizing that the paths suggest a valuable will of the people.

Though, this is not always the case. In another part of the campus, diagonal concrete paths were laid where it was clear that people walked, and are still in use:"
design  architecture  social  desirelines  elephantpaths  2003  force  coercion  berkeley  ucberkeley  ucsb  unschooling  deschooling  human  humans  travel  walking  anarchism 
june 2011 by robertogreco
Hyperbole (and Progressive Bloggers) Fail Me: The End of Public Higher Education « zunguzungu
"I don’t expect Kevin Drum to have the answers, and we can debate what it will look like when this bubble finally bursts. Some people think it will be a good thing; I think it will be a clusterfuck for the middle and lower classes. But we all need to open our eyes to the fundamental transformation of American society that it represents. The generation before Drum’s made it possible to get an excellent education even if you couldn’t afford to pay the $9,000 that Stanford charged in 1981. Kevin Drum’s generation enjoyed the benefits of that system and then they dismantled it. My generation is muddling through by going deep into debt. The next generation will not."
education  berkeley  highereducation  elitism  money  debt  privatization  publicschools  publicuniversities  public  csu  uc  kevindrum  california  via:javierarbona  tuition  fees  higheredbubble  2011  universityofcalifornia 
may 2011 by robertogreco
Lawrence Hall of Science
"Lawrence Hall of Science (LHS) is a renowned resource center for preschool through high school science and mathematics education, and a public science center with exciting hands-on experiences for learners of all ages."
science  education  kids  california  berkeley  bayarea  sanfrancisco  unschooling  deschooling  lcproject  tovisit  learning 
december 2010 by robertogreco
Julie Chen | Flying Fish Press [See also: http://www.craftinamerica.org/artists_paper/?]
"FLYING FISH PRESS was established in 1987 by internationally known book artist and book art educator Julie Chen. The press focuses on the design and production of limited edition artists' books with an emphasis on three-dimensional and movable book structures and fine letterpress printing. Editions range in size from 25 to 150 copies. Work from the press Is known for combining meticulous attention to craft, intricate structural design, and inspired artistic vision."
juliechen  art  artists  books  bookmaking  bookarts  berkeley  arts  letterpress  printing  bookbinding  press  california 
september 2010 by robertogreco
A Hidden Geography by Richard Walker
"The Golden Gate is inescapable. Draped in cloud, drenched in sun, swept clean by inexhaustible tides, the Gate and the bridge are always there, dutifully magnificent, stoically radiant. The Golden Gate anchors the San Francisco we carry around in our heads. City by the Bay. Gateway to the Pacific. City on the Hill. It fills the postcard, frames the visit, defines the experience. It captures the imagination of all who pass by.

But in and around the Golden Gate there is a great deal that does not readily come into focus. Beyond the magical realism of these photographs lies the geographic magic done by the hand of nature and humankind. The hidden geography of the Golden Gate can be seen in the rocky points and moldering piers cloaked in gray, in stipples of green and brown along the shore, in dots of brick and mortar tucked into the coastline. But it must also be called up from hidden places of collective memory, these clouds of history."
berkeley  california  climate  landscape  military  geography  sanfrancisco  richardwalker 
april 2010 by robertogreco
The Berkeley School | A preschool through 8th grade independent school
"Welcome to The Berkely School: Progressive, demanding & engaging education at the edge of change. A preschool through 8th grade independent school located near the UC Berkeley campus, we're here to prepare your child for the problem-solving demands of the future." [Great way to put it: "Progressive, demanding & engaging education at the edge of change."]

[via: http://www.alfiekohn.org/phpnews_1-3-0/news.php?action=mainnews&id=5 ]
theberkeleyschool  schools  progressive  montessori  tcsnmy  berkeley  tbs 
january 2010 by robertogreco
School Gardeners Strike Back - The Atlantic Food Channel
"That's a measured defense of school gardens, and a measured refutation of Flanagan's fairly indefensible argument, which is in its way as elitist and dismissive as she calls Waters. School gardens might not have been proven, yet, to make students get higher scores. But they will make students lead richer lives—and likely better-educated ones too."
alicewaters  caitlinflanagan  gardens  gardening  edibleschoolyard  controversy  schools  politics  food  berkeley 
january 2010 by robertogreco
Archinect : News : Erosion of Public Education in CA and Nationwide
"As we hear reports of Alameda County sheriffs entering the Berkeley campus with tear gas today, and (on the positive side) the University of California teams doing very well in the WPA 2.0 competition (winners UCLA's cityLAB as well as Berkeley faculty runners-up Rael and de Monchaux), it's worth listening to this report on Democracy Now. | Don't forget, we're also documenting the contribution of the UCs to the arts and design disciplines here."
education  colleges  universities  economics  money  javierarbona  berkeley  publiceducation  politics  california 
november 2009 by robertogreco
Cities and Ambition
"Even when a city is still a live center of ambition, you won't know for sure whether its message will resonate with you till you hear it...You'll probably have to find the city where you feel at home to know what sort of ambition you have."
paulgraham  cities  living  life  lifestyle  happiness  sanfrancisco  siliconvalley  nyc  paris  entrepreneurship  employment  work  careers  demographics  economics  proximity  urban  geography  society  bayarea  boston  california  education  knowledge  universities  psychogeography  location  art  restaurants  technology  science  math  research  money  business  challenge  wealth  class  social  insiders  intelligence  culture  commentary  losangeles  washingtondc  berkeley  comparison  dc 
may 2008 by robertogreco
YouTube - UC Berkeley
"The University of California, Berkeley is the preeminent public research and teaching institution in the nation. From classic literature to emerging technologies, the curricula of our 130 academic departments span the wide world of thought and knowledge."
education  online  programming  science  video  youtube  web  courses  opensource  opencourseware  berkeley  colleges  universities  learning  free  internet 
october 2007 by robertogreco

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