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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Cybersecurity expert Coleman addresses Forum on how to guard against dangers of the Internet


Coleman

A cybersecurity expert cautioned against the dangers of the Internet in a Nov. 19 Morning Forum of Los Altos presentation, “The Challenges of Cybersecurity: National and Personal.”

Bill Coleman, chairman and CEO of the cybersecurity firm Resilient Systems Inc. and director of Business Executives for National Security, discussed how to protect computers and computer systems from unauthorized attacks.

According to Coleman, during the next 20 years, people’s lives will become even more dependent on the Internet. He said that while computers help in many aspects of our lives, the Internet can be scary. Without cybersecurity, he added, all privacy will be destroyed.

The Internet presently is not being used in the most secure way, Coleman said, which allows criminals to act with impunity as they obtain personal information. And threats are escalating, he noted.

“Our governments can’t protect us adequately because cyber attacks occur at network speed, while our defensive responses are at human speed,” he said.

Coleman said the U.S. is the most vulnerable and least protected country, because it depends heavily on the Internet and remains the biggest target.

“Many individuals and corporations do not have state-of-the-art security systems,” he said. “The public lacks awareness of the immensity of the problem. Cybercrime constitutes the biggest transfer of wealth in history.”

To combat the problem, the U.S. government oversees more than 20 agencies working to protect cyberspace. Unfortunately, Coleman said, the agencies are not well coordinated. Moreover, he added, there are inadequate laws to protect U.S. citizens.

Cybercrime is tough to combat, Coleman said, because it is well funded by professional crime syndicates, and governments as well as individuals commit cybercrime. Russia is the world leader in consumer cybercrime, while China is the world leader in cyberespionage (stealing intellectual property), he noted.

Coleman advised people to protect themselves in cyberspace by using security software with automatic updates, performing frequent security scans, using a separate credit card for online financial transactions and selecting strong passwords and changing them often. He warned against online banking, unless the user has a really secure system. He suggested only opening online documents “if you trust them.”

Coleman concluded that even though many bad things are occurring in the cyberworld, he is optimistic and believes that the U.S. is making progress in regards to cybersecurity.

The Morning Forum of Los Altos is a members-only lecture series that meets at Los Altos United Methodist Church. For membership details and more information, visit morning forum.com.

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