Town hall turmoil
In an Aug. 14 Contra Costa Times article, Professor of Communication Studies Joseph Tuman commented on alternatives to contentious health care town hall meetings available to public officials. Tuman said "teletown halls" are an option, but should not become a tool to avoid constituents' anger. "They are all running for re-election, and they don't want to look as though they have lost control of their district or become the subject of a YouTube posting," Tuman said. "But in the end, you will do more damage to yourself if you screen out or limit the discourse instead of letting people have their say and engaging them."
Pinpointing rogue waves
An Aug. 8 BBC story featured new research on freak waves by Assistant Professor of Geosciences Tim Janssen. Janssen's research, published in August, found that some conditions could be more favorable to producing freak or rogue waves than others. A rogue wave measures roughly three times the size of the average wave height of a given sea state. Recorded monster waves have exceeded 60-feet -- the approximate size of a six-story building. "If you know that a certain area is very prone to freak waves, then you might wish to stay away from it," Janssen said. "Anybody out in the ocean would like to (have this information)."
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