Tue09162014

News

Council approves directional signs for Los Altos' Woodland Plaza

Council approves directional signs for Los Altos' Woodland Plaza


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Los Altos City Council last week approved the installation of two new directional signs on Foothill Expressway pointing motorists to the Woodland Plaza Shopping District.

The Los Altos City Council voted unanimou...

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Schools

New head of curriculum’s ideologies align with LASD

New head of curriculum’s ideologies align with LASD


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Edsel Clark, new Los Altos School District assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, above, facilitates a junior high mathematics curriculum meeting last week.

Edsel Clark, Ed.D., new assistant superintend...

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Community

Closing reception caps Foothill photo show on rural China

Closing reception caps Foothill photo show on rural China


From IncredibleTravelPhotos.com
Jacque Kae’s “Mischievous” is one of the many photographs on display at Foothill College this month.

Photographs of the land and culture of Huangshan and Zhangjiajie, China, are on exhibit through Sept. 26 at t...

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Sports

Spartans shine in opener

Spartans shine in opener


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High’s Frank Kapp snares a touchdown pass from quarterback Owen Mountford in Friday’s win.

Leading by a point at halftime, the Mountain View High football team outscored visiting Del Mar 20-0 the rest of...

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Comment

A look ahead to the Nov. 4 election: Editorial

Election season is upon us. In Los Altos, we have three major local races ahead – two seats on the Los Altos City Council, and three seats each on the Los Altos School District and Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District boards of tr...

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Special Sections

Renovation complete,  Villa Siena looks to future

Renovation complete, Villa Siena looks to future


Above and Below Photos Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier; Left Photo Courtesy of Villa Siena
Villa Siena in Mountain View recently underwent a $35 million face-lift. The five-year project expanded their senior living community’s space and ability to serv...

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Business

Transitioning from postage to pets

Transitioning from postage to pets


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
A new Pet Food Express store is scheduled to open at the Blossom Valley Shopping Center this month.

A site that previously existed to meet postal service needs will soon have an entirely different purpose – serving pe...

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Books

‘The Humans’ transcends alien genre to glean human insights

‘The Humans’ transcends alien genre to glean human insights


A good story about aliens is always great fun to read – after all, it’s only by attempting to understand the human race from another perspective that we can see ourselves more objectively.

But readers who might be tempted to dismiss ye...

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People

JEANNE PACKARD

After suffering a stroke in May, Jeanne Packard died August 10, 2014 at age 83. She was born in 1931 in Berlin, Germany, the only child of Emily Channel and Frank Howe Packard of Chicago, IL. Jeanne is survived by 5 great grandchildren. She was a lon...

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Travel

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska


Sandy Powell/Special to the Town Crier
Los Altos resident and bird photographer Sandy Powell recently visited Homer, Alaska, to photograph Sandhill cranes, below. While there, Powell also encountered moose, left.

Los Altos resident Sandy Powell, a...

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Stepping Out

'Trailer Park' opens in Los Altos

'Trailer Park' opens in Los Altos


Courtesy of Los
The cast of Los Altos Stage Company’s “The Great American Trailer Park Musical” includes, from left, Mylissa Malley as Lin, Vanessa Alvarez as Betty, and Christina Bolognini as Pickles. Altos Stage Company

Los Altos Stage Company...

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Spiritual Life

9/11 survivor Michael Hingson finds purpose

Imagine walking down 78 flights of stairs – 1,463 individual steps. You are in imminent danger as you walk, unsure whether you can make it out of the building before it collapses or explodes. Struggling for each breath, you smell the heavy sten...

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Magazine

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living


Courtesy of Spectrum Interior Design
In place of a more traditional fireplace, this modern living room features a linear-flame firebox that emits heat while offering a sculpturelike design element.

After traveling the world and visiting a host...

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Stocks fall on politicians’ whims

Stocks continue to fall as investors focus on the risk that the U.S. government won’t be able to pay its bills after hitting its borrowing limit this week.

Stocks surged to an all-time high Sept. 18, after the Federal Reserve unexpectedly kept its bond-buying program intact, but the market stalled last week amid fears of the looming budget and debt-ceiling crises.

Bond yields have dropped sharply since the Fed’s decision to maintain its $85-billion-per-month monetary stimulus. Rate-sensitive utility stocks have performed nicely since the decision, while financials and cyclical stocks have underperformed.

Stocks are no longer cheap. Improved earnings growth is essential to fuel any meaningful gains, and investors must regain confidence in the government.

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

• Applied Materials Inc. (AMAT; $17.63) reported Sept. 24 that it plans to purchase rival Tokyo Electron Ltd. in an all-stock transaction valued at $9 billion.

The merger will produce a combined capitalization of approximately $29 billion. The move is intended to accelerate the development of equipment for production of semiconductors, solar panels and flat-panel display technology.

“We are creating a global innovator in precision materials engineering and patterning that provides our new company with significant opportunities to solve our customers’ problems better, faster and at a lower cost,” said Gary Dickerson, CEO of Applied Materials, the largest manufacturer of chip-making equipment.

As the shift from personal computers to mobile devices like smartphones and tablets continues, the parts that hardware developers need are changing. Analysts believe that the merger will give both companies access to markets and research not previously available.

The Santa Clara-based Applied Materials acquired telecommunications equipment maker Varian Semiconductor Equipment Associates Inc. in 2011. With the latest acquisition, both Applied Materials and Tokyo Electron look to expand their global market share.

The merging of the two companies aims to create “a global innovator” in semiconductor and display manufacturing technology, according to an Applied Materials press release.

“This combination ... brings together complementary leading technologies and products to create an expanded set of capabilities in precision materials engineering and patterning that are strategically important for customers,” the release stated.

• Agilent Technologies Inc. (A; $51.28), maker of scientific-testing equipment, has long straddled the divide between health care and technology. The Santa Clara-based company last week announced plans to split into two publicly traded companies. While it may be nearly a year before the split takes effect, investors cheered the news.

One company – devoted to life sciences, diagnostics and applied markets – will retain the Agilent name, and the other yet-to-be-named enterprise will comprise Agilent’s portfolio of electronic-measurement products.

“Agilent has evolved into two distinct investment and business opportunities, and we are creating two separate and strategically focused enterprises to allow each to maximize its growth and success,” said Bill Sullivan, Agilent president and CEO.

After the announcement, Agilent stock rose 6 percent, and ISI Group issued an upgrade from buy to strong buy.

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