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Community Contributor
8:15 pm
Tue February 4, 2014

Dear Miami, Take The 'Chinese' Out Of 'Chinese New Year'

Credit freedigitalphotos.net

Editor's Note: This is a community contributor post.  The views expressed here are those of the author and not WLRN or WLRN-Miami Herald News.

Happy New Year!

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Medical Marijuana
7:41 pm
Tue February 4, 2014

Miami Entrepreneurs Trained To Capitalize From Cannabis

Credit TheNewsHerald/Flickr

The Cannabis Career Institute (CCI) held a day-long seminar last weekend in Miami with the goal to train businesspeople on establishing legitimate, legal cannabis businesses.

According to the CCI's president Bob Calkin, entrepreneurs need to be ready if medical marijuana use is approved by voters in November.

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Latin America Report
7:36 pm
Tue February 4, 2014

Colombia's Peace Crisis: Pres. Santos Confronts The Skeptics – And The Spies

Credit El Nuevo Herald

This week’s Colombian voter poll had to feel like a back-handed compliment for President Juan Manuel Santos.

The new survey by the Bogotá research firm Ipsos-Napoleón Franco shows Santos with a 17-point lead over his closest competitor in his bid to win re-election in May. But Santos garners just 25 percent of the vote. Half of those polled said they were undecided or intend to cast a blank protest ballot. That’s hardly cause for cumbia dancing at the Casa de Nariño presidential palace.

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StateImpact Florida
4:40 pm
Tue February 4, 2014

Computer Programming Could Count As A Foreign Language

Learning to write computer code could replace foreign language courses.
Credit XKCD / XKCD.COM

Florida students could choose computer programming courses instead of a foreign language as part of a bill to help Florida schools add more technology and digital instruction.

The bill would require state colleges to accept two years of computer programming if the courses applied to a student's major. State universities would have the option of accepting those courses instead of a foreign language.

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Apps and Activists
11:31 pm
Mon February 3, 2014

Hackathon For Cuba Developers Try To Free The Island's Internet

One of the competitors during his solo presentation to the judges.
Diego Saldana-Rojas WLRN

At LAB Miami in Wynwood this past weekend, local software developers and designers formed teams to compete for the best app that would give Cubans on the island uncensored Internet access, calling it the first ever “Cuba Hackathon.”

The event was organized by Roots of Hope, a network of young professionals working to “empower Cuba’s youth.”

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Art and Money
11:16 pm
Mon February 3, 2014

Wynwood Now Banking -- In Style

C1's bathroom wallpaper has literally got some eyes on it.
Credit Tom Hudson / WLRN

 A bank probably is not among the places you'd think of to see contemporary art. The traditional brick-and-mortar corner bank is more of a generic space with the usual teller windows, cubicles and offices. But St. Petersburg-based C1 Bank has turned the established bank space inside out for its first branch in South Florida.

It's the first financial institution to open the Wynwood Arts District of Miami -- the neighborhood better known for its street art than safety-deposit boxes.

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Links
10:33 pm
Mon February 3, 2014

WLRN's Five Most Popular Stories Jan. 27-31

Credit Tom Hudson

Modern-day slavery in Brazil, Bitcoin's rising popularity among South Florida merchants, rent spikes, human trafficking and a killer whale dominated the top stories this week.

Bitcoin in South Florida: Real Business Taking Virtual Money: Flower shops, burger joints and -yachts? The digital currency Bitcoin is gaining wider acceptance among merchants, including a few in South Florida.

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Arts
10:29 pm
Mon February 3, 2014

Exhibit Gets On The Factory Floor With Warhol's 'Baby Jane'

Jane Holzer stands in front of her portrait by Warhol
Jacek Gancarz

What ever happened to Baby Jane?

Not Bette Davis' Baby Jane, that horrifying child star turned cosmetically challenged psychopath, but the young model known throughout the 1960s as 'Baby Jane' Holzer.  The Palm Beach native -- and her role as artist Andy Warhol's friend, confidante and collaborator -- is the focus of an exhibit now showing at the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach.

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The Sunshine Economy
12:28 pm
Mon February 3, 2014

It's a Currency. It's a Dessert Topping. It's Bitcoin!

What is bitcoin exactly?
Credit casascius.com

Arrests in New York and Florida in late January indicate the global virtual currency Bitcoin has the attention of federal prosecutors: A top executive with a Bitcoin trade organization was one of those charged. The second man arrested was Robert Faiella, at his home in Cape Coral.

Faiella was charged with conspiracy to commit money laundering and operating an unlicensed money exchange business.  They are accused of helping push money through the online drug marketplace Silk Road.  

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Politics
7:57 am
Mon February 3, 2014

Florida Gubernatorial Candidates Take Digs At Competitors

Polls show Gov. Rick Scott trailing Democratic challenger and former Gov. Charlie Crist in a head to head race.
Credit Florida Governor's Office

Gloves are off in the race for Florida governor. The three top candidates for the office met with reporters in Tallahassee Wednesday, and all took verbal shots at their competitors.

Gov. Rick Scott was the first speaker at the annual meeting hosted by the Associated Press. He announced his fourth budget recommendation as governor. It’ll be his last unless he is re-elected.

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The End of the Road
7:46 am
Mon February 3, 2014

I-95's Narrow Shoulders And Speeding Cars Problematic For FHP

Credit By Jeffrey Katz, courtesy FDOT

The 95 Express Project has gotten traffic moving. Sometimes, arguably, moving too well.

FDOT numbers show that the average speed of express lane traffic during the majority of the day is between 64 and 66 MPH. That means the “average” car during those times is speeding by as much as 11 MPH.

The speed limit, which is the same for both the express lanes and the general purpose lanes, is either 55 MPH or 60 MPH depending on where you are.

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Memory Toast
8:00 am
Sat February 1, 2014

A Word On Food: Cinnamon

Click the play button above to hear the radio version of this post by Norman Van Aken.

The way my mother taught me to make cinnamon toast was to start with raisin bread and toast it to perfection.

She might have timed it by how long it took her to jump into her waitress work uniform before slathering it with rich and creamy Wisconsin sweet butter. Then she sprinkled a combination of sugar and cinnamon out of our plastic, yellow  ‘baseball player’ figurine bottle that was covered with wax paper tucked under a red metal lid tha t doubled as the faux baseball boy’s ‘cap’. She usually slathered enough butter on the toast so that the cinnamon and sugar mix slide over the top of it like grains of sand dancing in the ebb of an ocean wave.

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StateImpact Florida
3:42 pm
Fri January 31, 2014

How Florida Lawmakers Want To Help Schools Get Ready For Digital Lesson

Sarasota County schools partnered with the Gulf Coast Community Foundation to upgrade middle school math and science classrooms.
Credit John O'Connor

Florida schools could get more money to upgrade classrooms, purchase new computers, tablets and other technology and train teachers and staff how to use them.

But they'll have to meet new goals set by the Florida Department of Education, submit annual technology plans and document how they're spending the money.

That's according to a bill supported by House Speaker Will Weatherford and Senate Education committee chairman John Legg. The two Tampa Bay-area Republicans introduced the bill Friday.

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Riders On the Road
3:16 pm
Fri January 31, 2014

Here Is Tonight's Critical Mass Map And Info

Commuters beware: Critical Mass Miami will hold its monthly bike ride throughout the city tonight. 

Riders will meet at 6:30 p.m. at Government Center downtown and the ride will end at The Filling Station Express on Northwest First Avenue. The 13-mile ride will pass through several neighborhoods, including Little Havana and the Miracle Mile in Coral Gables. See the map below for the complete route.

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Human Trafficking
2:04 pm
Fri January 31, 2014

For Sex Slaves And Forced Laborers, Trafficking Trail Leads To South Florida

LIVES IN BONDAGE: According to best estimates, 27 million people are held in slavery around the world.
Credit Imagens Evangélicas

A day-long conference on human trafficking at Broward College on Thursday was an opportunity for experts in the field to shift the emphasis back to the bigger part of the problem. Many of the victims are girls and women who are captured and forced into prostitution but three times as many become slave laborers and many of those wind up in South Florida.

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