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May 05th
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News - Business

Learning in a Gamers' Paradise

Learning in a Gamers' Paradise

UCSC's computer game design program receives a $457,000 donation from Sony

Don’t let the association with toys fool you. Designing video games can be hard work.  Such hard work, in fact, that a group of Sony employees found themselves working nights, weekends and holidays without receiving proper overtime pay. They filed a class action lawsuit against their employer, Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA), in 2005, and in July 2007, they won $8.5 million in overtime from the company.

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News - Business

Sole Mates

Sole Mates

They gave corporate America the boot and launched an online, custom- design shoe business. Three years later, the entrepreneurs behind Santa Cruz-based cmax.com are ready to try success on for size

They have a bond tighter than any knot you’d find on a pair of swank sneakers, and enough traction to sprint on the business treadmill for years to come. Most of all, David Solk, Irmgard Kreuzer and Dave Ward have got sole—a lot of it ... enough to make tens of thousands of shoes and then some.

Hear that? It’s Imelda Marcos sighing with envy.

To fully grasp the story of how Santa Cruz became home to three entrepreneurs who kicked corporate America on its rear end only to launch the country’s—perhaps the world’s—hippest cus- tom design online shoe buying business, cmax.com (also known as customatix.com), it’s best to simply put yourself, well, in their shoes. There you are ... working at a behemoth called Adidas, and although you’ve been enjoy- ing your job as an über executive in the high- paced and often frenzied industry, you just crave more. Something’s missing. What, exact- ly, is it? You’ve got a sweet income in a job that allows you to travel around the world. You’re also savvy with marketing and know how to really mass-produce athletic footwear. When you find yourself chatting with colleagues—com- pany employees who are also on the management end of things, a few of them living over- seas—ideas are tossed around. Why not branch out ... form your own company, sell shoes. But take it to another level: do it online and do it in a way nobody else does. You want your e-tailing adventure to allow the customer to design his or her own shoes, really get involved in the process ... make it an inti-mate, personal experience. It would put conventional shoe buying on a tilt, but would it fly? Got $2 million?

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Mountain Mystic

When Cora Evans died in Boulder Creek in 1957, her thousands of pages of religious writings hadn’t yet been published. More than a half a century later, Evans’ fiery visions and spiritual devotion have inspired a crusade within Catholicism to make her the Santa Cruz Mountains’ first saint

 

Wesak (Water) Taurus Solar Festival, Buddha Blesses the Earth

A most important celebration occurs Sunday, May 3—the Wesak Taurus Buddha Solar Festival/full moon. At the moment of the full moon the Buddha’s presence enters the Earth plane for eight minutes. He brings the Will-to-Good from the Father, which, when reaching humanity becomes goodwill (Mother Principle). Held yearly in a valley hidden deep within the Himalayas, the Wesak festival is prepared for for months in advance (beginning at Winter Solstice). On festival day, amidst pilgrims, disciples and Holy Ones gathered in the valley, the Buddha is invoked through movement, symbols and mantrams. At the moment of the full moon, hearing the words, “We are ready, Buddha, come,” the Lord of Illumination (brother of the Christ) appears in the clouds above the altar to emanate forth the will and purpose of God to earth. The blessing of the father is then held in safekeeping for distribution at the June full moon Goodwill Festival. The day of Wesak (May 3, 8:42 p.m. West Coast) all disciples (east and west) place crystal vessels filled with pure water outside (in gardens, on rooftops, porches and steps) under the heavens. As the Buddha blesses the world, all waters, including waters within our bodies, are blessed. The Buddha is accompanied by the Forces of Enlightenment to illuminate humanity’s minds. Humanity then begins to express new constructive, productive and beneficial ways of the Art of Livingness. Wesak covers five days—two days (before) of dedicated preparation, the actual festival “Day of Safeguarding,” and two days (after) distributing goodwill (the NGWS to humanity). Join us in the Valley by reciting the Great Invocation, mantra of direction for humanity.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of May 1

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
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Latest Comments

 

Hole in the Wall

Popular Aptos spot opens for dinner

 

How do you connect with the natural world?

My connection to the natural world is through my art. I totally feel it there very physically in nature and even right here on the street. Jonathan Rosen, Felton, Pastor

 

Hess Collection Winery

My friend Emma from London came to visit for a few days in early March, so I took her wine tasting in the Santa Cruz Mountains—a rare treat for her, as there aren’t too many vineyards in the middle of London. Her visit reminded me how fortunate we are to live in this paradise of ultra-fresh produce, with grapes growing in wild profusion.

 

Springtime Walkabout

May Day Flower Festival, free tours of the UCSC Farm, and a nondairy chocolate indulgence