Mon10202014

News

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers


Ellie Van Houtte/ Town Crier
Campaign yard signs are just one expenditure for candidates during election season.

Election finance filings are in, and Los Altos appears to be hosting a few financially lopsided races.

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Schools

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Bullis Charter School students wear their school spirit clothing to greet their mascot Oct. 3 in celebration of being named a National Blue Ribbon School.

Blach Intermediate, Egan Junior High and Bullis Charter schools ea...

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Community

Sports

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High running back Austin Johnson goes for a big gain after evading Los Altos High defensive tackle Phil Alameda in Friday’s game. Johnson scored two touchdowns for the Spartans.

After unveiling its wildc...

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Comment

Logan, McClatchie, Peruri for LASD board: Editorial

This is a crucial time for the Los Altos School District. Its leadership faces the challenge of balancing enrollment growth versus maintaining the small, neighborhood schools that make it a very popular district to attend. The district must also adap...

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Special Sections

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Tandava Waldon, left, manager of East West Bookstore on Castro Street in Mountain View, works with a customer. Waldon said the recently approved minimum-wage hike will have little impact on his business. “It’s not such a...

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Business

Delay Social Security? An easy way to decide

One of the most heatedly debated questions regarding Social Security is when to start.

You have the option of initiating benefits as early as age 62 or as late as age 70. The longer you wait, the larger the monthly payment you will receive over your...

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Books

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mimi Sommers, who works at a Los Altos dentist’s office, recently wrote a children’s book.

A local dental hygienist recently published a book that aims to ease parents and children during a sometimes anxious e...

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People

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

Suzanne Monica Dimm Specht passed Tuesday, Sept. 9th at the age of 84. Sue was born on April 21, 1930 in Portland, Oregon. After graduating from the University of Oregon in with a degree in Music, Sue taught in a little town called Clatskanie, Oreg...

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Travel

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening


Courtesy of Sally Brew
North Korea is home to many monuments honoring its “Dear Leaders,” left.

In August, I traveled for 11 days with MIR Corp. to North Korea, a fascinating country that is almost completely cut off from the rest of the world. ...

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Stepping Out

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto


Courtesy of José Luis Moscovich
West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” is slated to open Friday night in Palo Alto and run through Oct. 26.

West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” (“The Troubadour”) is scheduled to open this weekend...

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Spiritual Life

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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Primary stock trend still bullish

Although S&P 500 stocks faltered Friday, the index posted positive gains in the first half of 2013 – its strongest first half, in fact, since 1998.

The market has sustained its share of volatility over the past month, and further fluctuations are possible in the near term. However, the market’s primary trend remains bullish. Stock market corrections can be scary, as recent events indicate – the possibility of the Federal Reserve tampering with interest rates, problems in China and concerns over second-quarter profits.

While the roller-coaster ride troubles many investors, buckle your seat belts and continue to look for new growth and income investments.

Two Town Crier “50” stocks made headlines last week.

• Apple Inc. (AAPL; $410.66) stock is declining, largely because iPhone inventories are high and sales are lower – consumers in India and Western Europe have flocked to cheaper alternatives.

Hoping to boost sales, Apple introduced an exchange program wherein the company pays up to $200 for older iPhones if a user upgrades to an iPhone5. While the tactic may increase sales, it could also put pressure on Apple’s profit margins.

In other news that reduced share price, lawyers offered closing arguments in the lawsuit that accuses Apple of colluding to inflate e-book prices. Additionally, while many hedge funds identified Apple as among their favorite stocks, they are now downgrading its value because of the lower gross margins pulling down the company’s earnings.

Apple will report its second-quarter results in late July – they should be light compared to previous quarters.

Analysts currently expect a flat year in sales, with a 21 percent decline in earnings. Many analysts consider Apple stock a hold or long-term buy, with a mean target price of $538 and a high of $888.

• Microsoft Corp. (MSFT; $34.46) is still trying to get back in the game with its cloud-computing venture. The company explored purchasing Nokia’s mobile phone business as a way to build an e-commerce website but eventually gave up. Microsoft did succeed in collaborating with Oracle Corp. on a cloud-computing partnership that allows customers to run Oracle software on Microsoft’s cloud platform.

The company plans to release a refinement of Windows 8 – Windows 8.1. The new version allows users to launch the operating system in a desktop mode that should please fans of the older versions of Windows. The new 8.1 Windows also returns the Start button to the lower-left corner of the desktop and allows users to boot directly to the desktop interface – a positive for the many users who haven’t updated.

With developers building multidevice, multiscreen, cloud-connected experiences, Windows provides capabilities to build modern applications quickly using Microsoft and Oracle.

Many analysts consider Microsoft stock a hold, but with new applications imminent, the holiday season for Windows 8.1 looks much more optimistic. Analysts target a mean price for Microsoft at $36.20 and a high at $42.

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