West Seattle Blog... » West Seattle online http://westseattleblog.com West Seattle news, 24/7 Thu, 24 Jul 2014 21:46:31 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.4.2 One year after survey, city’s out with ‘how you use tech’ report http://westseattleblog.com/2014/05/one-year-after-survey-citys-out-with-how-you-use-tech-report/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/05/one-year-after-survey-citys-out-with-how-you-use-tech-report/#comments Fri, 23 May 2014 20:01:59 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=274269 More than a year after city government invited Seattleites to take a survey about how we use technology – the Internet, cell phones, etc. – the results are out. Along with the online survey, the city says it also polled some residents by phone, and other via in-person focus groups – 2,600 participants overall. Here are the highlights (sample finding – almost everybody wants faster Internet!); here’s the full report.

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Updated: Apologies after SDOT tweet calls West Seattle Bridge drivers ‘scumbags’ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/05/funny-or-not-sdot-tweet-calls-west-seattle-bridge-drivers-scumbags/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/05/funny-or-not-sdot-tweet-calls-west-seattle-bridge-drivers-scumbags/#comments Mon, 05 May 2014 20:18:37 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=272465

1:18 PM: If you haven’t already seen this via The Seattle Times or via Reddit … someone at SDOT thought it was funny that the eastbound bridge was backed up this morning while the westbound bridge was closed for a rollover/spinout crash (as reported here), and proclaimed drivers on the eastbound side to be rubberneckers. If you use social media, you may know it’s considered cool for government agencies to use humor (major case in point, SPD/pot/Doritos). What do you think?

P.S. We have a question out to SDOT’s communications director for his thoughts. The West Seattle Transportation Coalition has already had something to say.

P.P.S. The “scumbag hat” reference is to this meme.

(You might also recall it was just a few months ago SDOT said it only had interns to staff the Transportation Management Center during peak hours – see this December story).

2:42 PM UPDATE: We contacted both SDOT communications director Rick Sheridan and Mayor Murray’s commmunications director Jeff Reading. Their responses both just came in. From SDOT’s Sheridan:

The use of the hat meme was not intended to insult drivers but to highlight a roadway problem and help drivers make decisions about their trips. We apologize to anyone that was offended by the tweet.

Our traffic management center personnel typically use humorous memes to highlight problematic situations for drivers. The staff member was trying to note that rubbernecking near a collision site was creating delays.

We have removed the tweet from our Twitter feed. The staff member’s supervisor will also reinforce the department’s standards for social media. Again, we apologize if anyone was offended.

And from Reading in the mayor’s office:

It’s never acceptable for a city employee to ridicule members of the public. I understand the tweet in question was meant humorously, but many — myself included — took it quite differently. Mayor Murray holds a high standard of respect for communications with the public across all city departments. We will ensure that this type of offending humor is not repeated in communications to the public by City of Seattle employees.

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Looking for more/better police/crime info online? West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network hosts SPD Web rep Tuesday http://westseattleblog.com/2014/04/looking-for-morebetter-policecrime-info-online-west-seattle-block-watch-captains-network-hosts-spd-web-rep-tuesday/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/04/looking-for-morebetter-policecrime-info-online-west-seattle-block-watch-captains-network-hosts-spd-web-rep-tuesday/#comments Thu, 17 Apr 2014 21:47:19 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=270784 Wish you could get more/better/faster information about crime/police activity online? Have ideas for how Seattle Police could improve/beef up what they offer online now? Come talk about it in person with Shanna Christie from the SPD Web team, next Tuesday (April 22nd) at the West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network. As explained by WSBWCN leaders Karen Berge and Deb Greer:

She wants our feedback about the online tools that are currently available on the SPD website, how they work and how they don’t. Are you able to find the information you need? Is the Block Watch Toolkit useful to you? She will talk about the plans in the works for a re-vamp of the precinct webpages, starting with the SW Precinct. They hope to provide better information, and more timely information, about what is happening in our neighborhoods. Your feedback is needed!

That’s 6:30 pm Tuesday in the meeting room at the Southwest Precinct (Webster/Delridge).

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Lights out? Stuff dumped? 2 new options for city’s ‘Find It, Fix It’ problem-reporting app http://westseattleblog.com/2014/04/lights-out-stuff-dumped-2-new-options-for-citys-find-it-fix-it-problem-reporting-app/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/04/lights-out-stuff-dumped-2-new-options-for-citys-find-it-fix-it-problem-reporting-app/#comments Thu, 10 Apr 2014 04:52:48 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=270104 Quick update about the city’s Find It, Fix It app, which you can use to report various problems via your smartphone. From the announcement:

… Smartphone users now can use the app to report illegal dumping and streetlight outages, in addition to abandoned vehicles, graffiti, potholes and parking enforcement issues, which have been features of the app since it launched in August 2013. …

Since its launch last summer, Find It, Fix It has been downloaded to 6,350 mobile devices and users have submitted 6,393 requests through this new channel (graffiti, 2,551; other, 1,744; pothole, 1,012; abandoned vehicles, 558; and parking enforcement, 528).

Don’t have it? You can download it by going here.

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From the WSB Forums: Tell the city what you think of Comcast http://westseattleblog.com/2014/03/from-the-wsb-forums-tell-the-city-what-you-think-of-comcast/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/03/from-the-wsb-forums-tell-the-city-what-you-think-of-comcast/#comments Mon, 17 Mar 2014 20:54:10 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=267976 Thanks to WSB Forums member Wakeflood for opening a discussion about this – the city is asking for your feedback right now about Comcast‘s franchise, before deciding on a potential 10-year-renewal. As Wakeflood points out, you can just answer a few quick questions here – or follow the link on that page to a full-fledged more-detailed survey (here).

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WSB site note: Sorry about the outage! http://westseattleblog.com/2014/02/wsb-site-note-sorry-about-the-outage/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/02/wsb-site-note-sorry-about-the-outage/#comments Sun, 02 Feb 2014 03:47:48 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=263660 Our apologies for WSB having been mostly unreachable for more than an hour this evening. Thanks to those who checked to make sure we knew – our 24-hour hotline, 206-293-6302, text or voice, is the best way to reach us with something urgent. Downtime is rare – our last major problem was almost five months ago – but if WSB ever doesn’t come up for you, please check our main social-media channels – Facebook (facebook.com/westseattleblog – if you “friended” us in the early days at facebook.com/wsblog, please note the “WS Blog” page is long-decommissioned, so you need to “like” WSB at /westseattleblog instead) and Twitter (twitter.com/westseattleblog). We also have a blog-format backup site at westseattleblog.wordpress.com. Thanks for your patience and support!

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Gigabit Squared high-speed Internet service deal reportedly ‘dead’ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/01/gigabit-squared-high-speed-internet-service-deal-reportedly-dead/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/01/gigabit-squared-high-speed-internet-service-deal-reportedly-dead/#comments Tue, 07 Jan 2014 22:18:25 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=261251 The plan for a startup called Gigabit Squared to bring high-speed Internet to neighborhoods including part of West Seattle is dead, the Puget Sound Business Journal says this afternoon. This comes days after GeekWire reported that Gigabit Squared wasn’t paying a $52,000 bill it had racked up for city engineers’ time, and shortly after Publicola pointed out a Chicago report that GB2 was on the rocks there. Last year, then-Mayor McGinn announced in his 2013 State of the City speech that the plan would expand to include part of West Seattle, and GB2 announced its pricing plan in July, but there had been no updates since then.

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Comcast trouble in West Seattle? Should be over, or soon http://westseattleblog.com/2014/01/comcast-trouble-in-west-seattle-should-be-over-or-soon/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/01/comcast-trouble-in-west-seattle-should-be-over-or-soon/#comments Mon, 06 Jan 2014 21:37:57 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=261106 Several have asked about Comcast trouble in the past hour-plus. Via Twitter, @ComcastWA said a few minutes ago “Washington state customers whose services were affected by issues should be back up or coming back up.”

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Halloween event planned? Please let us know ASAP! http://westseattleblog.com/2013/10/halloween-event-planned-please-let-us-know-asap/ http://westseattleblog.com/2013/10/halloween-event-planned-please-let-us-know-asap/#comments Fri, 04 Oct 2013 02:24:34 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=251759 jackols.jpgExactly four weeks from tonight, it’s Halloween! We’ll be publishing our special page of Halloween/harvest-season events/activities soon, so we’re sending out the request tonight: If you have a seasonal event planned, open to the public, at your business, school, church, etc., please let us know. E-mail the what/where/when (etc.) basics to editor@westseattleblog.com ASAP – even better if you have a weblink and/or Facebook link to info about it (not mandatory, though). As with all event-calendar listings, we request that you send the info as plain text, NOT as a Word/PDF/image attachment. Thanks!

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Find It, Fix It: New city app for graffiti, potholes, abandoned cars… http://westseattleblog.com/2013/08/find-it-fix-it-citys-new-app-for-graffiti-potholes-abandoned-cars/ http://westseattleblog.com/2013/08/find-it-fix-it-citys-new-app-for-graffiti-potholes-abandoned-cars/#comments Tue, 13 Aug 2013 22:48:42 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=160929

Just announced by the city: “Find It, Fix It,” an app for your iPhone or Android phone that can be used to report graffiti, potholes, abandoned vehicles, parking-enforcement issues, and more. The announcement explains that you can use the app to take a picture, add details, pinpoint the location, and send the report to the city. What happens from there?

Submissions are entered into the City’s Constituent Relationship Management (CRM) system, and departments responsible for providing that specific service will manage and track requests. The City of Seattle began using the CRM system in December 2011. There may be some initial delays in response time as City departments adjust to any increase in service requests. …

The City anticipates adding other request types in the future and welcomes feedback on the app and ideas for additional features. Users should choose the Find It, Fix It app’s “other inquiry” category – found under the “New Request” icon – to submit feedback.

Read more about it here – and/or, if you have an Android or iPhone, go to Google Play or the App Store (respectively) and check it out. The city says it’s looking forward to feedback from the first round of users to figure out how to improve it in the long run.

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Apologies yet again http://westseattleblog.com/2013/08/apologies-yet-again/ http://westseattleblog.com/2013/08/apologies-yet-again/#comments Fri, 02 Aug 2013 05:30:45 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=159769 We are in the “you can’t make omelets without breaking a few eggs” technical mode – that’s no excuse, but there’s really nothing else we can say about being offline for a few hours. Some people had trouble seeing the site earlier in the day too – and that has to do with the nature of the problem, which involved the ultimate destination you’re pointed to when you ask your computer or phone to take you here. As of right now, everything’s pointed to the correct place. It’s been a fairly quiet day, so you haven’t missed much, but again, we’re sorry – even on slow days, we work hard to have interesting information here, updated at least every few hours, so we’re behind now and we’ll be catching up on a few things overnight as a result. – Tracy & Patrick, WSB co-publishers

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Short survey: The city wants to know what YOU want to know … http://westseattleblog.com/2013/07/short-survey-the-city-wants-to-know-what-you-want-to-know/ http://westseattleblog.com/2013/07/short-survey-the-city-wants-to-know-what-you-want-to-know/#comments Sat, 06 Jul 2013 06:52:51 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=157186 … as they work on new mobile apps. This is the second survey on the topic; they’re asking for specifics on what kind of information you would find useful in three particular areas. Here’s the link.

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Please forgive us for today’s sudden outage http://westseattleblog.com/2013/07/please-forgive-us-for-todays-sudden-outage/ http://westseattleblog.com/2013/07/please-forgive-us-for-todays-sudden-outage/#comments Thu, 04 Jul 2013 02:38:24 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=156897 Please accept our apologies for the outage late today – it was NOT planned, and furthermore, when we occasionally need to take the site down for maintenance, we do our best to make sure it’s only in the very late-night/early-morning hours. Our latest problems are the result of growing pains yet again – every month sets a new record for homes/businesses visiting WSB, and we keep having to adjust the underlying technology to keep up. Right now we’re beginning work (with expert assistance) on leaping way ahead, rather than just keeping up, so once we can make that leap, it should dramatically reduce the risk of sudden crashes like the few we’ve had lately. In addition to checking our social-media channels if WSB is down – primarily Facebook (be sure you “like” facebook.com/westseattleblog, NOT our old “WS Blog” account) and Twitter – we also have revived our old blog-format backup site, so bookmark westseattleblog.wordpress.com) just in case. Thanks again for your patience and ongoing support and collaboration – Tracy Record & Patrick Sand, WSB co-publishers

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Update: WSB Forums technical trouble http://westseattleblog.com/2013/06/fyi-site-maintenancerepairs-later-tonight/ http://westseattleblog.com/2013/06/fyi-site-maintenancerepairs-later-tonight/#comments Wed, 26 Jun 2013 04:46:18 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=156065 9:46 PM: If you are a WSB Forums user, you have likely noticed that section of our site is unusable right now. Trouble hit during this evening’s storm coverage, and while the rest of the site has recovered, the Forums haven’t. At some point later tonight, the entire site will be down for maintenance/repairs in hopes of getting that fixed. We’re sorry for the trouble and appreciate your patience.

3:54 AM: As noted in a “sticky” post in the Forum, we have restored the database to a backup that is a few days old. We are still investigating to see if there is any way to get those days’ content back too and hope to have an opinion on that by mid-morning. The threads that had been updated in those ensuing days are still displaying on the forum index page as authored by “anonymous,” but if you click on any one of them, you will see the authors and posts – up to that several-days-old backup. Again, our apologies for this problem, which was internal to the server, NOT caused by anything/anyone external such as hackers or spammers (though spam was displaying on the index for a while until deleted).

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Gigabit Squared reveals pricing, reiterates West Seattle 2014 plans http://westseattleblog.com/2013/06/gigabit-squared-reveals-pricing-reiterates-west-seattle-2014-plans/ http://westseattleblog.com/2013/06/gigabit-squared-reveals-pricing-reiterates-west-seattle-2014-plans/#comments Mon, 24 Jun 2013 17:18:26 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=155794 New information from Gigabit Squared for the first time since the excitement over its announcement four months ago that its plans for mega-fast Internet service would include West Seattle as one of 14 “demonstration neighborhoods.” (Here’s our February report.) This morning, GB2 sent a news release with its projected pricing when it launches its first neighborhoods (listed as the West 
Campus
 District, 
First
 Hill, 
Capitol 
Hill
, and
 Central
 Area). You can read the full news release on the GB2 website; here are the toplines, and their reply to our WS-specific followup:

Plan A:

5 Mbps download/1 Mbps upload: No charge for 60 months
5/1 Mbps services are transferrable to new renters or owners
After 60 months renters or owners can convert to a 10 Mbps download/10 Mbps upload service plan for only $10 per month

Plan B:

100 Mbps download/100 Mbps upload for $45 per month
No installation charge with one- year contract

Plan C:

1000 download/1000 upload Mbps for $80 per month
No installation charge with one-year contract

If you’re not at Plan B level or higher with a one-year contract, the news release says, there’s a $350 installation charge.

We asked about the latest timeline for West Seattle; spokesperson Matt Weinland replied, “At this time, we only have specifics on the neighborhoods mentioned in the release. However, we’re working around the clock with our engineering and build teams to ensure that the original targeted communities will receive service as quickly as possible. We are planning to roll out service to all 14 neighborhoods throughout 2014. We will be making an announcement in July (next month) regarding how residents can sign up and help us prioritize neighborhoods.” The map on its website has the same West Seattle boundaries as it did in February, but GB2 said at the time that those were not necessarily the final boundaries, so if you’re interested, get on their list regardless of whether you’re in that area or not – here’s the current link.

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