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News

LA Council race adds 3 new faces to city politics

LA Council race adds 3 new faces to city politics


The Town Crier chronicled the first election of Los Altos City Council incumbent Jarrett Fishpaw in 2010 and documented the Los Altos candidacy of Jean Mordo, who volunteered as a longtime public servant in Los Altos Hills before moving to the flat...

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Schools

St. Simon launches web-based learning management system

St. Simon launches web-based learning management system


Courtesy of St. Simon Parish School
St. Simon fifth-grader Matthew Cummins uses a laptop in class last week. The school’s cloud-based Schoology system boosts organization and collaboration.

Families at St. Simon Parish School in Los Altos laun...

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Community

Los Altos to celebrate 100 years of library use with 'Centennial Faire'

Los Altos to celebrate 100 years of library use with 'Centennial Faire'


Town Crier File Photo
The Los Altos main library is among the more popular branches in the county library district system, set to celebrate 100 years.

In 1914, Babe Ruth made his debut with the Boston Red Sox, wages hit $5 per day, the first ste...

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Sports

Eagles eye another stellar season

Eagles eye another stellar season


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Los Altos High outside hitter Carmen Annevelink, right, goes for the kill Thursday against Palo Alto, as teammates Sarah Tritschler, left, and Lulu Kishton prepare to play defense. The Eagles won the match in straight ga...

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Comment

Torok, Walter, Dave for MVLA board: Editorial

There’s really nothing major you can criticize about the Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District. It offers a diverse array of effective programs for all types of students. Its instructors, with few exceptions, are outstanding.

Howe...

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Special Sections

'Funabout' Fiat

'Funabout' Fiat


Photos courtesy of Fiat
The 2014 Fiat 500e uses 29 kilowatt-hours per 100 miles, which the engineers claim is the equivalent of 116 mpg of gas use. It has a sticker price of $33,095.

If you believe in climate change, would love to see alternat...

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Business

App developer eyes First Friday as testing ground

App developer eyes First Friday as testing ground


Ted Fagenson

An East Bay app developer is testing his newest creation in downtown Los Altos.

Ted Fagenson, co-founder of Skrownge (pronounced “scrounge”), told the Town Crier that he’s beta testing his mobile gaming app this week ...

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Books

From story to bookstore: Local journey highlights Halloween

From story to bookstore: Local journey highlights Halloween


Courtesy of Dee Ellmann
Jenny Hurwick self-published her picture book last month after decades of storytelling.

During her years working as a teacher and a Los Altos mom, Jenny Hurwick loved to tell stories. One tale she crafted for her son just se...

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People

VINCENT (TIM) MURPHY JR.

VINCENT (TIM) MURPHY JR.

July 27, 1953 – August 12, 2014

Native Los Altan died Medford, OR. Graduated Bellarmine Prep. Married Josephine Domino, 1950. Licensed Auto Mechanic, Private Pilot, skilled Computer Scientist. Tim “could fix anything”. Afflicted with cancer 2001. ...

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Travel

Taking a Turkey trek: Winging it during the World Cup

Taking a Turkey trek: Winging it during the World Cup


Rich Robertson/Special to the Town Crier
The sun sets over the Aegean Sea in Bodrum, Turkey, left.

Tours that whisk you from Istanbul to Bodrum in 11 days are as plentiful as souvenir hawkers in Turkey, but traveling from the Blue Mosque to Topkapi ...

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Stepping Out

'Gypsy' on its way out

'Gypsy' on its way out


Chris Berger/Special to the Town Crier
Alison Koch of Los Altos plays Dainty June in “Gypsy.”

This is the final weekend to catch the Sunnyvale Community Players production of “Gypsy” at the Sunnyvale Theatre. The musical is slated to close Sund...

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Spiritual Life

Ugandan pastor visits U.S. to raise support for children's ministry

Ugandan pastor visits U.S. to raise support for children's ministry


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Herman Lukwago educates children in Uganda.

Imagine life if your father had 25 children and you were raised in poverty in rural Uganda.

Now imagine that you and your siblings were orphaned at an early age and you ass...

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Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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Broadbase CEO's no-frills approach keeps this software company hot

Chuck Bay won't win any awards for pretentiousness. This down-to-earth, down-to-business Los Altos resident feels just fine in a polo shirt and being addressed as "Chuck." He managed to be friendly and direct at the same time as he explained why his company, Broadbase Software of Menlo Park, occupies a unique niche in e-commerce that may well keep it very profitable for years to come.

Bay, 43, who became CEO of the company in January 2000, has guided Broadbase through incredible growth which has taken the employee base from about 80 two years ago to more than 600 now. He has also presided over four mergers and the company's initial public offering (IPO) in September 1999. Bay had come to Broadbase in 1998 with experience handling mergers and a successful IPO with Pure Atria Software Inc.

Broadbase offers analytic, service and marketing automation applications under one umbrella, allowing Internet users to access varied and detailed information. Businesses can better access consumer information for marketing campaigns and online merchandising. "No other company does all of this," Bay said.

Broadbase, with its slogan, "Get closer to your customers," counts among its more than 500 customers BEA Systems, Cisco Systems, Hewlett-Packard, Nextel, Eddie Bauer, Kodak and Nike.

As an example of Broadbase's impact, he said, the Eddie Bauer Web site has an "Ask Eddie" function that allows visitors to get a variety of questions answered without having to talk to anybody. "'Eddie' is our software," he said. "We're saving (companies) millions in people manning phones."

It was Broadbase's multifaceted capabilities that led the state of California to come calling. Under Gov. Gray Davis' mandate to provide better "e-government," state officials sought to provide a useful, comprehensive Web portal, but not one that had users flooding state phonelines wondering how to use it.

Under Bay's direction, several companies combined forces last year to work on the governor's portal, including Interwoven, Broadbase, Broadvision, Arcot and Verity. The result is a site, my.ca.gov, announced during Davis' "State of the State" speech in January. The site allows "access to information quickly and easily from virtually every state department," according to Broadbase literature.

Broadbase's software also allows the state to analyze visitor data while respecting privacy, to update and improve content according to residents' interests.

"Think of not having to stay in line at the DMV," Bay said. "Think of (handling) the process of a small business loan." Numerous tasks in dealing with the state, normally requiring travel and paperwork, can now be handled online through the site, saving both the state and its residents a bundle of money and a lot of hassle.

"Broadbase was a critical piece of our portal implementation," said Arun Baheti, director of e-government "They helped us bring the entire concept of customer management to the government sector -- a first."

Baheti cited Bay in particular for making the Web site happen. "He personally took it on - it was him driving it. Without Chuck, we would not have the high quality and high level of support."

Broadbase's success has not gone to its collective head. Headquarters, while spacious, are Spartan and functional. "We're very frugal here," Bay said. "We haven't got ahead of ourselves."

Even in good times, the company kept its spending in check. As a result, it's in good shape with more than $100 million in the bank.

Bay knows the company is hot and will eventually get hotter. "A lot of companies are trying to buy us," he said. "We believe we're significantly undervalued."

Broadbase is located at 181 Constitution Drive, Menlo Park. For more information, call 614-8300 or logon to: www.broadbase.com.

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