Posts tagged computer
A team led by the University of Colorado Boulder looking for clues about why Earth did not warm as much as scientists expected between 2000 and 2010 now thinks the culprits are hiding in plain sight — dozens of volcanoes spewing sulfur dioxide.
The study results essentially exonerate Asia, including India and China, two countries that are estimated to have increased their industrial sulfur dioxide emissions by about 60 percent from 2000 to 2010 through coal burning, said lead study author Ryan Neely, who led the research as part of his CU-Boulder doctoral thesis. Small amounts of sulfur dioxide emissions from Earth’s surface eventually rise 12 to 20 miles into the stratospheric aerosol layer of the atmosphere, where chemical reactions create sulfuric acid and water particles that reflect sunlight back to space, cooling the planet.
Neely said previous observations suggest that increases in stratospheric aerosols since 2000 have counterbalanced as much as 25 percent of the warming scientists blame on human greenhouse gas emissions. “This new study indicates it is emissions from small to moderate volcanoes that have been slowing the warming of the planet,” said Neely, a researcher at the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, a joint venture of CU-Boulder and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
A paper on the subject was published online in Geophysical Research Letters, a publication of the American Geophysical Union. Co-authors include Professors Brian Toon and Jeffrey Thayer from CU-Boulder; Susan Solomon, a former NOAA scientist now at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Jean Paul Vernier from NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Va.; Catherine Alvarez, Karen Rosenlof and John Daniel from NOAA; and Jason English, Michael Mills and Charles Bardeen from the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder.
The new project was undertaken in part to resolve conflicting results of two recent studies on the origins of the sulfur dioxide in the stratosphere, including a 2009 study led by the late David Hoffman of NOAA indicating aerosol increases in the stratosphere may have come from rising emissions of sulfur dioxide from India and China. In contrast, a 2011 study led by Vernier — who also provided essential observation data for the new GRL study — showed moderate volcanic eruptions play a role in increasing particulates in the stratosphere, Neely said.
The new GRL study also builds on a 2011 study led by Solomon showing stratospheric aerosols offset about a quarter of the greenhouse effect warming on Earth during the past decade, said Neely, also a postdoctoral fellow in NCAR’s Advanced Study Program.
The new study relies on long-term measurements of changes in the stratospheric aerosol layer’s “optical depth,” which is a measure of transparency, said Neely. Since 2000, the optical depth in the stratospheric aerosol layer has increased by about 4 to 7 percent, meaning it is slightly more opaque now than in previous years.
“The biggest implication here is that scientists need to pay more attention to small and moderate volcanic eruptions when trying to understand changes in Earth’s climate,” said Toon of CU-Boulder’s Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences. “But overall these eruptions are not going to counter the greenhouse effect. Emissions of volcanic gases go up and down, helping to cool or heat the planet, while greenhouse gas emissions from human activity just continue to go up.”
The key to the new results was the combined use of two sophisticated computer models, including the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model, or WACCM, Version 3, developed by NCAR and which is widely used around the world by scientists to study the atmosphere. The team coupled WACCM with a second model, the Community Aerosol and Radiation Model for Atmosphere, or CARMA, which allows researchers to calculate properties of specific aerosols and which has been under development by a team led by Toon for the past several decades.
Neely said the team used the Janus supercomputer on campus to conduct seven computer “runs,” each simulating 10 years of atmospheric activity tied to both coal-burning activities in Asia and to emissions by volcanoes around the world. Each run took about a week of computer time using 192 processors, allowing the team to separate coal-burning pollution in Asia from aerosol contributions from moderate, global volcanic eruptions. The project would have taken a single computer processor roughly 25 years to complete, said Neely.
The scientists said 10-year climate data sets like the one gathered for the new study are not long enough to determine climate change trends. “This paper addresses a question of immediate relevance to our understanding of the human impact on climate,” said Neely. “It should interest those examining the sources of decadal climate variability, the global impact of local pollution and the role of volcanoes.”
While small and moderate volcanoes mask some of the human-caused warming of the planet, larger volcanoes can have a much bigger effect, said Toon. When Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines erupted in 1991, it emitted millions of tons of sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere that cooled the Earth slightly for the next several years.
The research for the new study was funded in part through a NOAA/ ESRL-CIRES Graduate Fellowship to Neely. The National Science Foundation and NASA also provided funding for the research project. The Janus supercomputer is supported by NSF and CU-Boulder and is a joint effort of CU-Boulder, CU Denver and NCAR.
Boulder police are investigating a burglary at the Apple store, located at 1755 29th St., which occurred on Feb. 16, 2013. Officers responded to an alarm at the store at 2:16 a.m.
Police found three large rocks inside, which were used to break the glass entrance door. The custom-made door is valued at approximately $100,000.
Surveillance video shows what police believe may be a male suspect, wearing a black hoodie, white gloves and a black baseball cap stealing various computer items from the display tables inside the Apple store. It’s estimated that $63,813 worth of laptops, iPads & iPhones were pulled from security fasteners that attached them to the display tables.
Shopping center security officers did not see anything unusual before the burglary.
Apple store managers have hired extra security.
The case number is 13-2141.
Police ask anyone with emergency tip information to contact Dispatch at 303-441-3333. Non-emergency information may be left on the Boulder Police Department’s Tip Line at 303-441-1974. Those who have information but wish to remain anonymous may contact the Northern Colorado Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or 1-800-444-3776. Tips can also be submitted through the Crime Stoppers website at www.crimeshurt.com. Those submitting tips through Crime Stoppers that lead to the arrest and filing of charges on a suspect(s) may be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000 from Crime Stoppers.
University of Colorado Boulder Assistant Professor Nikolaus Correll likes to think in multiples. If one robot can accomplish a singular task, think how much more could be accomplished if you had hundreds of them.
Correll and his computer science research team, including research associate Dustin Reishus and professional research assistant Nick Farrow, have developed a basic robotic building block, which he hopes to reproduce in large quantities to develop increasingly complex systems.
Recently the team created a swarm of 20 robots, each the size of a pingpong ball, which they call “droplets.” When the droplets swarm together, Correll said, they form a “liquid that thinks.”
To accelerate the pace of innovation, he has created a lab where students can explore and develop new applications of robotics with basic, inexpensive tools.
Similar to the fictional “nanomorphs” depicted in the “Terminator” films, large swarms of intelligent robotic devices could be used for a range of tasks. Swarms of robots could be unleashed to contain an oil spill or to self-assemble into a piece of hardware after being launched separately into space, Correll said.
Correll plans to use the droplets to demonstrate self-assembly and swarm-intelligent behaviors such as pattern recognition, sensor-based motion and adaptive shape change. These behaviors could then be transferred to large swarms for water- or air-based tasks.
Correll hopes to create a design methodology for aggregating the droplets into more complex behaviors such as assembling parts of a large space telescope or an aircraft.
In the fall, Correll received the National Science Foundation’s Faculty Early Career Development award known as “CAREER.” In addition, he has received support from NSF’s Early Concept Grants for Exploratory Research program, as well as NASA and the U.S. Air Force.
He also is continuing work on robotic garden technology he developed at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2009. Correll has been working with Joseph Tanner in CU-Boulder’s aerospace engineering sciences department to further develop the technology, involving autonomous sensors and robots that can tend gardens, in conjunction with a model of a long-term space habitat being built by students.
Correll says there is virtually no limit to what might be created through distributed intelligence systems.
“Every living organism is made from a swarm of collaborating cells,” he said. “Perhaps some day, our swarms will colonize space where they will assemble habitats and lush gardens for future space explorers.”
For a short video of Correll’s team developing swarm droplets visit http://www.colorado.edu/news/multimedia/researchers-creating-team-tiny-robots. For more information about CU-Boulder’s computer science department visit http://www.colorado.edu/engineering/academics/degree/computer-science.
All BVSD students, school faculty and staff, parents, and community members are invited to participate in the adoption of the core instructional materials for mathematics by reviewing the materials and providing feedback to the committee.
Community members may examine the materials being considered for adoption in the following three ways:
1) Examine the materials in person by attending a Public Review Open House
Times for all review sessions: 4:00-7:00 pm
Location: Education Center, 6500 Arapahoe Rd., Boulder, Professional Development Center Conference Rooms
2) Examine the materials in person between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday
3) Examine the materials online through the Math Department Website. Start at the Instructional Materials Adoption page of the Math Department website. Click the link for the math grade level/course you will be reviewing:
Click the link of the program or text you would like to review. This will take you to the publisher’s website.
Reviewers may provide their feedback to the adoption committees in two ways:
1) Complete a feedback form at the Education Center during a Public Review Open House or during regular business hours.
2) Complete a feedback form online from any computer with internet access. Start at the Instructional Materials Adoption page of the Math Department website Click the link for the math grade level/course you will be reviewing. Click on the Take Our Survey Button. Fill out the form and click “submit.”
A new long-term study of human twins by University of Colorado Boulder researchers indicates the makeup of the population of bacteria bathing in their saliva is driven more by environmental factors than heritability.
The study compares saliva samples from identical and fraternal twins to see how much “bacterial communities” in saliva vary from mouth to mouth at different points in time, said study leader and CU-Boulder Professor Kenneth Krauter. The twin studies show that the environment, rather than a person’s genetic background, is more important in determining the types of microbes that live in the mouth.
For the new study, doctoral student Simone Stahringer sequenced the microbial DNA present in the saliva samples of twins. She and the research team then determined the microbes’ identities through comparison with a microbe sequence database. Saliva samples were gathered from twins over the course of a decade beginning in adolescence to see how salivary microbes change with time.
After determining the oral “microbiomes” of identical twins, who share the same environment and genes, and the microbiomes of fraternal twins who share only half their genes, the researchers found the salivary microbes of the identical twins were not significantly more similar to each other than to those of fraternal twins. “We concluded the human genome does not significantly affect which bacteria are living in a person’s mouth,” said Krauter of CU-Boulder’s molecular, cellular and developmental biology department. “It appears to be more of an environmental effect.”
Krauter said while the twin data from the oral microbiome study indicates that genetics plays a more minor role, it’s possible the genes still affect the oral microbiome in more subtle ways — an effect he plans to further explore.
A paper on the subject was published online Oct. 12 in the journal Genome Research. Other co-authors included doctoral student William Walters of MCD Biology, Jose Clemente and Rob Knight of the chemistry and biochemistry department, Robin Corley and John Hewitt of the Institute for Behavioral Genetics and Dan Knights, a former doctoral student in the computer science department.
The researchers also found that the salivary microbiome changed the most during early adolescence, between the ages of 12 and 17. This discovery suggests that hormones or lifestyle changes at this age might be important, according to the team.
Stahringer said that when several pairs of identical twins moved out of their homes and, for example, went off to college, the oral microbes they carried changed, which is consistent with the idea that the environment contributes to the types of microbes in the saliva. “We were intrigued to see that the microbiota of twin pairs became less similar once they moved apart from each other,” Stahringer said.
Krauter said there appears to be a core community of oral bacteria that is present in nearly all humans studied. “Though there are definitely differences among different people, there is a relatively high degree of sharing similar microbial species in all human mouths,” he said.
A DNA sequencing chart
The authors say the new study has established a framework for future studies of the factors that influence oral microbial communities. “With broad knowledge of the organisms we expect to find in mouths, we can now better understand how oral hygiene and environmental exposure to substances like alcohol, methamphetamines and even foods we eat affect the balance of microbes,” said Krauter.
The saliva samples used in the new study came from the university’s Longitudinal Twin Study and Colorado Adoption Project, which have involved hundreds of identical and fraternal twin pairs. Researchers also are analyzing additional frozen saliva samples collected during their studies for another project assessing possible relationships of oral bacteria to drug addiction, he said.
CU has a strong research focus on the human microbiome. In a 2011 study led by the Washington University School of Medicine and involving CU-Boulder, researchers found the diversity and abundance of gut microbes in animals varied depending on whether they were carnivores, omnivores or vegetarians. Knight is a member of a national research team funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to look at the gut microbes of normal and malnourished infants and children around the world in search of novel microbial therapeutics.
In 2012, some 200 researchers from the NIH-funded Human Microbiome Project, including eight CU-Boulder researchers, mapped the microbial makeup of healthy humans for the first time. The study involved nearly 250 healthy U.S. volunteers and targeted 15 to 18 individual sites on the body harboring microbial communities.
Other recent studies involving CU researchers included one that found the delivery methods of babies have a big effect on their individual microbiomes, and second that showed women have a greater diversity of hand bacteria than men. Another showed personal bacterial communities living on the fingers and palms of individual computer users can be matched up with bacterial signatures on the computers and computer mice they recently used, a potential new tool for forensic scientists in the future.
According to scientists, about 100 trillion microorganisms inhabit surfaces and cavities of our bodies, which amounts to roughly 10 microbes per human cell.
Genome Research is an international, peer-reviewed journal that focuses on research that provides new insights into the genome biology of all organisms, including advances in genome medicine.
Funding for the study was provided by National Institutes of Health grants HD-010333 and DA-011015.
Boulder Valley Superin tendent Bruce Messinger is asking for feedback from parents, teachers and the community on how the federal Race to the Top grant money should be used. The district is applying for the grant, which would provide $10 million to $20 million over four years to develop more personal ized education for stu dents, with a focus on low achieving students and schools. To provide feedback, go to www.bvsd.org.
Boulder Valley refur bishes and makes avail able retired computers to students and staff mem bers. The district’s ‘adopt-a computer’ store will be open from 3 to 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at 6600 Arapa hoe Road. Computers are $25 for students and $50 for employees. Students need to bring a purchase form signed by their prin cipal and a parent. To download the form and for more information, go to www.bvsd.org/it/adoptacomputer/Pages/default.aspx.
Chris Roob, Peak to Peak High School
Crayons to Calculators , a collaborative annual school supply drive, sponsored by Western Disposal, and supported by many local businesses, churches, civic organizations and hundreds of individuals, delivered more than 8,000 backpacks of school supplies to students in Boulder Valley and St.Vrain Valley public schools this fall. Crayons to Calculators is a partnership of Impact on Education, I Have A Dream Foundation of Boulder County, Sister Carmen Community Center, Foothills United Way, Boulder Valley School District, Education Foundation for the St. Vrain Valley and the St. Vrain Valley School District focused on ensuring that all students start school with the supplies they need to succeed.
Leading quantitative conservation biologist named CU’s first Colorado Chair in Environmental Studies0
The University of Colorado Boulder has hired its first Colorado Chair in Environmental Studies, an endowed chair awarded to Daniel Doak, a conservation biologist known for his quantitative analysis of how different government policies could affect the populations of species ranging from sea otters, California condors, corals and rare plants.
The endowed chair in environmental studies was made possible by $4 million in gifts made anonymously in 2009 and 2010 toward the chair.
Sharon Collinge, professor and director of the CU-Boulder Environmental Studies Program, called Doak a perfect match. “He epitomizes what we’re looking for,” she said.
Doak is especially skilled in interdisciplinary research, she said. He brings expertise in policy to his analyses of risks of energy development, for example. And he is widely cited for his research in quantitative conservation biology, which combines sophisticated computer modeling with varying policy scenarios to project changes in populations of rare species.
For instance, the Proceedings of the National Academies of Science recently published a study co-authored by Doak concluding that the California condor is chronically endangered by lead exposure from hunters’ spent ammunition.
While the free-flying condor population has risen in the last three decades, that increase has been achieved through captive breeding, monitoring and veterinary care, the study found. Meanwhile, the primary threat to the endangered bird — lead poisoning from bullets and shotgun shells lodged in carrion — has gone largely unmitigated, the study said.
Doak and his fellow researchers found no evidence that California’s 2008 partial ban on lead ammunition yielded any decrease in lead exposure and poisoning in condors.
Since 2007, Doak has served as a professor of zoology and physiology at the University of Wyoming. Previously, he was a faculty member at the University of California, Santa Cruz. His research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Forest Service, California Department of Fish and Game and the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. Scholarly papers have cited his work more than 3,000 times since 1998.
Doak said he was drawn to CU-Boulder’s Environmental Studies Program because of its breadth, spanning disciplines ranging from biogeochemistry to political science to philosophy. This interdisciplinary focus is necessary to confront some of the world’s most intractable problems, Doak and Collinge said.
“That’s the only way we can really address and resolve some of the major environmental challenges that we face,” Collinge said.
Working with experts from a wide range of disciplines, Doak added, provides a motivation and opportunity “not once a year but every day to confront your own ignorance and thus to appreciate and learn new ideas and approaches.”
It is not that interdisciplinary work is always best, he added. “We need to train ourselves and our students to determine when the problem we are confronting requires an interdisciplinary approach. If you want to build a bridge that won’t fall down, you don’t need an interdisciplinary team. You need a good engineer.”
The critical question, he said, is the following: “Is this problem a nail that requires a hammer, or is this a problem that requires a lot of tools? And most environmental problems require an entire chest of tools and the different people who know how to use them.”
Collinge said students sometimes grasp this distinction better than professors do. “Students who are interested in the environment understand very deeply that they have to know something about politics and policies and how we make choices and why we make choices,” she said. “They’ve essentially pushed us, encouraged us to provide that broad and deep training for them.”
Of the donor’s gift, Collinge said, “This was incredibly generous. And we are really grateful.
“For me, it validates or speaks to the importance of what we’re doing,” she said. “With more than 1,000 undergraduate majors in environmental studies and 50 graduate students, enthusiasm was abundant even before the gift that enabled the endowed chair.”
A 27-year-old man from Boulder has been arrested on several charges involving child pornography. Shawn McClaran (11/26/1984) was taken into custody at his workplace in Jefferson County and transported to the Jefferson County Jail after failing to surrender to Boulder police.
The case began at the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office during an internet investigation they were conducting. The investigator located a computer in Boulder which was sharing child pornography, and then contacted Boulder detectives. The suspect was Shawn McClaran.
Police conducted a search warrant of McClaran’s home and computer and found a number of child pornography files on the computer. McClaran admitted to detectives that he viewed child pornography.
McClaran will face charges in Boulder that include Sexual Exploitation of a Child (distribution of child pornography) and Sexual Exploitation of a Child (possession of child pornography).
The case number is 12-4788.
A monthlong summer exhibit at the University of Colorado Boulder Art Museum will feature a dynamic new media composition based on innovative robotics technology.
Called “Swarm Wall,” the large-scale interactive piece displays changing fields of color, light and sound that are driven by a distributed form of artificial intelligence.
As many as 70 intelligent “nodes” behind the piece create a swarming effect when they detect movement and communicate it with one another. The nodes exhibit swarm behavior because each performs actions solely based on its own plan and the actions of its immediate neighbors.
The 42-by-12-foot installation is the first product from a new art and technology research group on campus. The group was launched by faculty members Michael Theodore of the College of Music, who received a $44,000 grant from CU’s Innovative Seed Grant Program last year to support the collaboration, and Nikolaus Correll of the computer science department.
Also involved in the Swarm Wall is Ken Sugawara, a visiting computer science professor from Tohuku Gakuin University in Japan who is an expert in animal flocking behavior, the inspiration behind the patterns the wall displays.
The seed grant, which Correll and Theodore say already has helped them attract additional funding, was the first step toward establishing an active lab where students, faculty and professional researchers from various disciplines collaborate on cutting-edge applications of artificial intelligence.
“We’re now calling it the ‘if’ lab because we want to see what happens if artists put engineers in front of tough problems,” said Correll, who is providing space for the growing group within his own robotics laboratory in the Engineering Center at CU-Boulder.
“We want to assemble some basic, inexpensive tools that students can use to explore and to develop new applications of robotics,” Correll said.
Scattered around the lab last week were a collection of small custom circuit boards, electronic panels, items resembling ping pong balls and various other components that are being used to assemble robotic devices.
An assembly of circuit boards connected with bright orange cables also was mounted on a partition in the lab in preparation for the installation of Swarm Wall. Small mechanical arms or flippers waved back and forth as the “brains” behind the Swarm Wall were tested. Sometimes the movement was synchronized, while other times a ripple effect would occur in response to some stimuli.
“Artistic exploration can help computer scientists and engineers to ask questions they wouldn’t have otherwise asked,” said Theodore, who also serves as director of the ATLAS Center for Media, Arts and Performance.
“The difference between arts and science is very diffuse; both want to discover new things,” Theodore said. “The cool thing about art is that we can explore systems that are not of interest to classical funding agencies, but might be so after maturing in a lab like the ‘if’ lab.”
Swarm Wall is one of four pieces in “Michael Theodore: Field Theory,” an exhibition of kinetic sculpture, sound, lighting and works on paper, running June 15 through July 14 at the CU Art Museum. The exhibition is free and open to the public. An opening reception will be held on June 15, from 6 to 8 p.m. For additional information, visitors may call the CU Art Museum at 303-492-8300 or go to http://cuartmuseum.colorado.edu.
Police in Boulder are releasing the attached sketch of the suspect believed to be involved in a strong-arm laptop robbery last Wednesday, May 16, at Foolish Craig’s restaurant. Foolish Craig’s is located at 1611 Pearl St.
Around 9:35 p.m., a male patron was sitting at a table near the door of the restaurant facing the windows, which looked onto Pearl St. The patron told police that a black man entered the restaurant, approached the patron and wrapped his arm around the patron’s neck, shoving his head toward the table. The suspect then grabbed the Apple laptop the patron had been using, and fled the restaurant.
The male victim chased the suspect but lost sight of the suspect when he fell. The victim suffered some cuts and scrapes, but wasn’t seriously injured.
Several people called police to report the robbery, including a patron at Foolish Craig’s and others who saw the suspect running down the street with the computer.
The suspect is described as:
- A black male with very dark skin
- Between 22 and 24 years old
- Approximately 5’7” tall
- Thin build; 140 pounds
- Last seen wearing a red sweatshirt with a light-colored T-shirt underneath, with dark pants
The case number is 12-6609.
Police believe same suspect responsible for two separate burglaries
Boulder police are investigating two residential burglaries, and victims have provided very similar descriptions of the suspect. Composite sketches of the suspect are attached. In both cases, the suspect stole laptops.
The first burglary took place on May 11, in the 900 block of University Ave. around 1:37 a.m. Two male roommates and their male friend were home at the time of the burglary. One of the roommates happened to be at a window, and saw the suspect attempting to enter a bedroom of the residence from the outside. The roommate left the window to alert the others, and they heard glass shatter. When the victim of the computer theft checked his room, the suspect had fled with the victim’s laptop. The case number for this burglary is 12-6294.
The second laptop burglary took place on May 14, in the 1000 block of 12th St. The female resident was moving out around 5:25 p.m., when she noticed what she described as a college-age, white male going up the stairs. She informed him that no one was home, and continued carrying a box to her car. When she returned a few minutes later, she noticed the same male coming out of the building and found that her laptop was missing when she reentered her apartment. The case number for this burglary is 12-6480.
Police believe the same suspect is responsible for both burglaries.
The suspect is described as:
- White male
- “College age”
- Approximately 6’0” tall
- 170 pounds
- Short brown hair
- Seen in 12-6294 wearing a pink, vertically-striped (pinstripe) shirt with long sleeves. Seen in 12-6480 wearing tan cargo-style shorts, sneakers and a white or light-gray shirt with multi-color writing.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Det. Sarah Cantu at 303-441-4328. Those who have information but wish to remain anonymous may contact the Northern Colorado Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or 1-800-444-3776. Tips can also be submitted through the Crime Stoppers website atwww.crimeshurt.com. Those submitting tips through Crime Stoppers that lead to the arrest and filing of charges on a suspect(s) may be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000 from Crime Stoppers.
Free music downloads now available from Boulder Public Library via Freegal
For everyone who’s ever heard a song on the radio and wanted to add it their collection, wanted a hit single off an album, or just wanted to explore the work of new musical artists, Boulder Public Library offers a new, free online music download service. Freegal Music, a downloadable music service designed for libraries, is now available through the library’s website at: http://boulderlibrary.freegalmusic.com/.
Freegal is free for all Boulder Public Library (BPL) cardholders who live in Boulder County, and all downloads may be kept permanently. Each library cardholder may download up to three songs per week (156 per year) and keep the songs forever. All that is needed to access this service is a Boulder Public Library card number in good standing.
Freegal Music provides access to the Sony Music Entertainment catalog, which includes hundreds of thousands of songs, more than 100 genres of music, and more than 50 record labels. No special software is needed to use the service, and there are no digital rights management restrictions. Downloading of songs is completely free and legal for library cardholders. Songs are downloaded in a universally compatible MP3 format, so they can be saved to any computer, mobile device or MP3 player, including an iPod. Songs can be downloaded at home or at computer stations in libraries via a USB device, such as a flash drive or MP3 player. One click and you can save the songs to your iTunes or Windows Media Player.
“We are excited to be able to offer this free music download service to Boulder Public Library cardholders,” said Valerie Maginnis, library director. “It gives our patrons access to more of the materials they want, in a convenient, accessible format, while also being highly efficient for the library. We anticipate that this will be a very popular new service.”
More information and answers to frequently asked questions about Freegal are available on the BPL website, www.boulderlibrary.org. Music can also be found in the library’s catalog by searching for “Freegal.” BPL offers other music and film streaming services, such as Alexander Street, which offers 30,000 albums for streaming, at: http://research.boulderlibrary.org/music_film.
Sketch of burglary suspect released; police caution residents about computer thefts
Boulder police are looking for a male suspect who entered a residence in the 1200 block of College Avenue and reportedly stole a laptop computer and jewelry from the residence. A composite sketch of the suspect is attached.
The burglary took place on Sunday, Feb. 26. A female victim told police she awoke to find an unknown male standing in her bedroom. When she asked him what he was doing there, he claimed that one of her roommates had told him he could stay there because he had been drinking. None of the victim’s roommates knew the suspect, who left the residence as the victim was attempting to find out who had allowed him to enter.
The suspect is a black male who is described as:
- In his early 20s
- 5’07” tall
- 160 pounds, medium build
- Clean shaven
- Shaved head
It appears the residence had been left unlocked.
Boulder police are investigating a number of burglaries in which residents have left their homes unlocked. Police remind residents to lock their doors, even if they’re only going to be gone for a little while. It’s also a good idea to keep curtains closed, so that prospective thieves can’t see into the home. There are a number of computer applications available that allow a laptop to be located through a GPS system, and police encourage laptop owners to sign up for or purchase this type of program.
The case number is 12-2647.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Kristin Weisbach at 303-441-4474.Those who have information but wish to remain anonymous may contact the Northern Colorado Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or 1-800-444-3776. Tips can also be submitted through the Crime Stoppers website at www.crimeshurt.com. Those submitting tips through Crime Stoppers that lead to the arrest and filing of charges on a suspect(s) may be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000 from Crime Stoppers.
Suspects spend thousands after stealing wallet
Police in Boulder are looking for one male and two female suspects who investigators believe are involved in a wallet theft that took place in Whole Foods Market, located at 2905 Pearl St., on Feb. 9.
A female victim was shopping in the store at 10:30 a.m. and left her purse unattended in her cart while she shopped. She realized her wallet was missing from her purse when she tried to check out and pay for her items around 11:25 a.m.
The victim began calling her credit card companies to cancel her cards, but they had already been used for transactions at various stores in Boulder. Thousands of dollars worth of mostly computer items and gift cards were charged to the credit cards before the victim could cancel them.
Here are descriptions of the suspects:
- 5’5” to 5’6” tall
- 130 pounds
- Long black, waist-level hair
- Dark brown eyes
- Wearing black clothes and high-heeled black boots
- Described by clerk as “stylish”
- Approximately 40 years old
- 5’3” to 5’4” tall
- 140 pounds
- Black hair
- Light brown eyes
- Wearing a tan beanie-style cap, a tan puffy jacket & blue jeans
- Wearing a brown and black leather jacket
- No further information is available, but photo is attached
The case number is 12-1836.
The Boulder Police Department would like to offer some tips for safe shopping:
- Keep your purse in your hands or on your shoulder; never leave it unattended because criminals know your attention will be divided while shopping.
- Keep your cell phone in your pocket.
- Pre-program phone numbers for your banks and all your credit card companies into your phone.
- Alert store security AND call law enforcement immediately if you discover you have been a victim of a theft.
- Call each financial institution immediately after becoming aware of the theft. Criminals know they have a small window of opportunity to use your credit cards before they are flagged as stolen.
- Authorize financial institutions to relase any illegal transaction details to law enforcement for the investigation.
- Don’t keep your Social Security card or any password information in your wallet.
Police are asking the public for help in identifying the suspect in the attached photo. The lead investigator in this case is Detective Scott Morris, and he can be reached at 303-441-3482. Those who have information but wish to remain anonymous may contact the Northern Colorado Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or 1-800-444-3776. Tips can also be submitted through the Crime Stoppers website atwww.crimeshurt.com. Those submitting tips through Crime Stoppers that lead to the arrest and filing of charges on a suspect(s) may be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000 from Crime Stoppers.
CU and NREL get 10 more Toyota
hybrids to plug into smart grid study
Ten plug-in hybrid vehicles, or PHVs, have been added to a University of Colorado Boulder study that has been examining user experiences and system interactions since September 2010 in the local smart-grid environment.
The increase will allow researchers from CU-Boulder’s Renewable and Sustainable Energy Institute, or RASEI — a joint venture with the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory — to gather data from a broader base of participants. The loan of Prius cars from Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc. will expand the originally supplied fleet to a total of 28.
“RASEI’S expertise in analyzing trends in consumer use of energy gives us an opportunity for research at this critical nexus of the electric utility and transportation industries as they transition to the future,” said Michael Knotek, RASEI director. “We are delighted that this project is valuable to Toyota.”
The Boulder location presents the opportunity for study participants to track their household electricity use through smart-grid technology, and for researchers to monitor the performance of Toyota’s first-generation lithium-ion drive battery at high altitudes, in cold weather and in mountainous terrain.
The cars are circulated in nine-week intervals among randomly selected households. Participants receive a “smart plug” — a device installed in home garages — from Xcel Energy that allows online monitoring of their car’s electricity use and their home’s energy consumption. There also are numerous dashboard displays in the PHVs that show gas mileage when driving in electric mode and hybrid mode.
The PHV demonstration vehicles can be fully charged in approximately three hours using a standard 110-volt electrical outlet and can cruise in electric-only mode for about 14 miles. For longer distances, the PHVs revert to hybrid mode and operate like regular Prius cars.
“One of RASEI’s goals is to establish public-private partnerships that bring together academic, industry and government lab research,” said Knotek. “The PHV study, supported by Toyota with the integral participation of Xcel Energy, is the first of many RASEI projects that reflects this type of comprehensive and valuable collaboration.”
The study’s principal investigator is Barbara Farhar, RASEI’s senior research associate. The co-principal investigator is Dragan Maksimovic, CU-Boulder professor of electrical, computer and energy engineering.