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Performance Seattle and Seattle Open Budget

At his State of the City Speech on February 17, Mayor Ed Murray announced two new online tools based on open data.

Performance Seattle (performance.seattle.gov) uses current data to monitor progress against the goals set for the future of the City of Seattle.  At present, nine City departments are contributing data about how well they are meeting their goals, such as reducing traffic fatalities, reducing our carbon footprint and responding quickly to fires.  In the coming months, all City departments will set performance targets and report regularly to the public on their progress.

Seattle Open Budget (openbudget.seattle.gov) provides greater transparency into the City’s budget with graphs, charts and maps in an easy-to-use interface, and is a leap forward in budget reporting for our City.

Taken together, both of these resources will help us as a City achieve better goal-setting, better tracking, better use of data, and better outcomes.


Get your taxes done for free

Jan 13 – Apr 18, United Way Offers Free Tax Help

Take advantage of United Way’s Free Tax Preparation services. Neighborhood sites are open January 13 to April 18, 2015. Tax help is available in your neighborhood and in your language from IRS-certified volunteers. They’ll help you get all the credits you qualify for and file your return electronically, so you’ll get your refund fast. The best news: No appointment needed and no fees to pay.

For more information, please go: here.

Comcast resolution approved

Seattle City Council approves resolution and Mayor signs the legislation calling on the FCC to consider public benefits in Comcast and Time Warner merger. The resolution proposes that certain public-interest obligations be required of Comcast Corporation for its proposed merger with Time Warner Cable Incorporated in the event the merger is approved by the Federal Communications Commission.

Digital Literacy Forum

The 21st Century has changed the way we live, learn and work, making digital literacy a necessity for succeeding in today’s world. Seattle Goodwill is committed to ensuring that everyone in our community who needs digital literacy skills gets them.

Contribute to the conversation at the Digital Literacy Forum on March 4, 11:30 to 1:00 p.m. at the Seattle Goodwill Administration Building (700 Dearborn Pl. S, Seattle, 98144).  Join moderator, Bob Hughes, Seattle University’s Associate Dean for Research and Online/Professional Education and panelists James Thomas, Corporate Diversity Affairs Director for Nordstrom, Bruce Harrell, Seattle City Councilmember, and Dr. Amy Morrison Goings, President of the Lake Washington Institute of Technology.  Also participating will be Daryl Campbell, President/CEO Seattle Goodwill and Steve Kipp, Vice President of Communications for Comcast.

Lunch is included, please RSVP to kim.tepe@seattlegoodwill.org or 206-860-5738.

Watch Me Now: notes on a surveillance society

PechaKucha Seattle, in collaboration with The Seattle Public Library, present “Watch Me Now: Notes on a Surveillance Society,” on February 26.  The event will bring together speakers from across the information ecosystem – including policy makers, technologists, advocates, and others to discuss the complex issues surrounding privacy and surveillance in the digital world.

This free public event will be in the Microsoft Auditorium at Central Library (1000 4th Ave) on Thursday, February 26th at 5:30pm. Starting this Thursday, February 5th, please see http://www.pechakucha.org/cities/seattle or http://www.spl.org for more information.

Scheduled speakers include Ryan Calo from the University of Washington Law School and co-director of the UW Tech Policy Lab; Frank Catalano, technology analyst and columnist for GeekWire; Jared Friend, Technology and Liberty Director for the ACLU of Washington State; Ramez Naam, former Microsoft executive, computer scientist, and award winning author; Ben Krokower, Chair, Seattle Citizens Technology and Telecommunications Board; and many other local and regional experts on privacy and surveillance issues.

PechaKucha Seattle was founded in 2006. Since its inception, PechaKucha Seattle has hosted 39 events city-wide. Over 400 presenters and have reached thousands of people to celebrate the amazing people that make our region so wonderful. PechaKucha provides a place for creative cross-pollination that is generative, personal, and truly engaging.

The Seattle Public Library brings people, information and ideas together to enrich lives and build community. The Library supports early learning and the joy of reading through our collections and resources, services, programs and partnerships. The Library also believes that privacy is essential to free speech, free thought and free association. The Library maintains a policy of confidentiality that covers library borrower records, including requests for information, use of online services, and library loan transactions.

Celebrate radio: the big power of Seattle’s new low power FM radio stations

Join 12 new Low Power FM neighborhood radio stations in celebration of receiving their Federal Communications Commission approval to build everything they need to start broadcasting on February 13 5:00 PM at the Central Library. Enjoy a slice of our radio tower cake, “lightning talks” from the new stations, broadcast coverage maps, and information on how to get involved. Find out what radio can do for your neighborhood, and how you can be a part of it!

The celebration will be streamed live online by Hollow Earth Radio, Seattle University Radio, and University of Washington Bothell’s UWave, three of the recipients of the FCC construction permits. Two additional stations in Seattle that have applied for FCC licenses and are awaiting approval will join in the celebration and lightning talks.

RSVP here: http://celebrateradio.brownpapertickets.com

This event is produced by the Brown Paper Tickets Doer Program as an advocacy initiative to build communications infrastructure for stronger communities. Thanks to Seattle Public Library for their generous support.

FCC Approved Stations
Hollow Earth Radio (Central District) / 100.3 FM Seattle University
Radio (First Hill/Capitol Hill/Central District) /102.1 FM
Sand Point Arts & Cultural Exchange (Magnuson Park) / 101.1 FM Rainier
Valley Radio (Rainier Valley) / 105.7 FM KMIH Booster Club (Downtown Seattle) / 101.1 FM OneAmerica (SeaTac) / 106.5
FM City of Kent (Kent) / 101.1 FM
Voice of Vashon (Vashon Island) / 101.9 FM
Fab-5 (Tacoma) / 95.3 FM
Radio Duvall / 103.1 FM
UWave Radio at UW Bothell / 104.9 FM
Make.Shift (Bellingham) / 94.9 FM

Fulcrum Community Communications (NW Seattle) / 107.3 FM Earth
On-the-Air Independent Media (University District) / 105.7 FM

Seattle Tech Advisory Board selects new officers, committees

At the December meeting of the City of Seattle Citizens Telecommunications and Technology Advisory Board, the members elected Nourisha Wells as Board Chair and Joneil Custodio to be the Vice Chair for 2015. The Board and City staff thanked the 2014 Chair Ben Krokower and 1st Vice Chair Dana Lewis. Both will be continuing to work with committees in 2015. The Board also thanked retiring members Rob Dolin, Brian Hsi, Stacey Wedlake and Daniel Hoang for their valuable service to the residents of Seattle.  Read more about the new and current members here: seattle.gov/cttab

The Board members also selected committees they will serve on in 2015 and initial committee chairs:

e-Government: Nourisha Wells (chair), Joneil Custodio, Jose Vasquez
Digital Inclusion: Ben Krokower (Chair), Joneil Custodio, Jose Vasquez, Dana Lewis, and Sarah Trowbridge
Broadband & Cable: Sarah Trowbridge (Chair), Beryl Fernandes, past members Brian Hsi and Daniel Hoang
Privacy: Beryl Fernandes (Chair), Ben Krokower, and Nourisha Wells

Follow CTTAB and the exciting work they do here: cttab.seattle.gov/feed/


Get Online Jobs available in Chinese and Spanish

Get Online Jobs and the Internet is now available in Chinese and Spanish.  This is an expanded format that also includes how you can manage your online presence as you prepare and search for work.  If you are interested in receiving copies of these brochures, please contact Vicky Yuki at (206) 233-7877 or by email at vicky.yuki@seattle.gov.

You can also preview the content on our site at seattle.gov/getonline.

Video: Low cost broadband for $10 per month

Did you know that there are four providers in Seattle that offer $10 per month home Internet?  We  want to everyone who is qualified to take advantage of these discounted opportunities available in Seattle and have produced a public service announcement to let you know what your options are.  Watch this PSA to learn more.


The Seattle Public Library rolls out new computer resources for public workstations

The Seattle Public Library is expanding technology access and learning resources for Library patrons. All Library locations now offer upgraded workstations, full access to Microsoft Windows and relaxed permissions for patrons.

  • More applications – The Adobe Creative Cloud suite of applications, including Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Premiere and more, is now available on all public workstations. Microsoft Office applications are still available as well.
  • Full access to Microsoft Windows – Library computers now look and act just like a “normal” Windows computer. Computer users have full access to built-in software applications, accessories and functions.
  • More permissions – Library patrons now have the ability to download and install applications during their computer-use session. All computers are restored to a default state after a session ends.

Learn more about the Library’s public computers at http://spl.org/computers. Library patrons can use their Library card to reserve a computer for up to 90 minutes a day at http://spl.org/reserveacomputer.

Not only does the Library offer great technology, but it also teaches people how to use it. The Library teaches computer classes, provides access through Microsoft IT Academy to hundreds of online courses and preparation for Microsoft Certification exams, and more:

  • The Safari Book Collection at http://spl.org/safari has thousands of free electronic books on a variety of technical topics for both beginners and experts. The Library has more than 100 titles for Adobe Photoshop at http://spl.org/photoshop.
  • Library workstations have access to Lynda.com technology instructional videos at http://spl.org/lynda, which includes full courses on software products as well as tutorials on specific topics like “Logo Design Techniques,” “Product Photography for Jewelry,” “Working with Camera RAW Files,” and “Creating Aircraft Profiles Using Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.”

For more information, call the Library at 206-386-4636 or Ask a Librarian.