07-15-2024  4:35 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather

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NORTHWEST NEWS

The Top Draft Pick of the Mariners Pitches Lefty and Righty. Jurrangelo Cijntje Wants to Keep It Up

Cijntje threw right-handed to lefties more often in 2024 but said it was because of discomfort in his left side. The Mariners say they want Cijntje to decide how to proceed as a righty and/or lefty as a pro. He says he wants to continue pitching from both sides.

Wildfire Risk Rises as Western States Dry out Amid Ongoing Heat Wave Baking Most of the US

Blazes are burning in Oregon, where the governor issued an emergency authorization allowing additional firefighting resources to be deployed. More than 142 million people around the U.S. were under heat alerts Wednesday, especially across the West, where dozens of locations tied or broke heat records.

Forum Explores Dangerous Intersection of Brain Injury and Law Enforcement

The Portland Committee on Community-Engaged Policing hosted event with medical, legal and first-hand perspectives.

2 Men Drown in Glacier National Park Over the July 4 Holiday Weekend

 A 26-year-old man from India slipped on rocks and was swept away in Avalanche Creek on Saturday morning. His body has not been recovered. And a 28-year-old man from Nepal who was not an experienced swimmer drowned in Lake McDonald near Sprague Creek Campground on Saturday evening. His body was recovered by a sheriff's dive team.

NEWS BRIEFS

Interstate Bridge Replacement Program Awarded $1.499 Billion

Federal support again demonstrates multimodal replacement of the Interstate Bridge is a national priority ...

Echohawk Selected for Small Business Regulatory Fairness Board

Indigenous woman and executive leader of Snoqualmie-owned enterprise to serve on national board advancing regulatory fairness and...

HUD Reaches Settlement to Ensure Equal Opportunity in the Appraisal Profession

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced today that it has entered into an historic Conciliation...

HUD Expands Program to Help Homeowners Repair Homes

The newly updated Federal Housing Administration Program will assist families looking for affordable financing to repair, purchase, or...

UFCW 555 Turns in Signatures for Initiative Petition 35 - United for Cannabis Workers Act

On July 5, United Food and Commercial Workers Local 555 delivered over 163,000 signatures to the Oregon Secretary of...

Things to know about heat deaths as a dangerously hot summer shapes up in the western US

PHOENIX (AP) — A dangerously hot summer is shaping up in the U.S. West, with heat suspected in dozens of recent deaths, including retirees in Oregon, a motorcyclist in Death Valley, California and a 10-year-old boy who collapsed while hiking with his family on a Phoenix trail. Heat...

California reports first wildfire death of the 2024 season as fires persist across the West

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Wildfires fueled by strong winds and an extended heat wave have led to the first death in California of the 2024 season, while wind-whipped flames in Arizona have forced hundreds to flee from what tribal leaders are calling the “most serious” wildfire on their reservation...

Missouri governor says new public aid plan in the works for Chiefs, Royals stadiums

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri Gov. Mike Parson said Thursday that he expects the state to put together an aid plan by the end of the year to try to keep the Kansas City Chiefs and Royals from being lured across state lines to new stadiums in Kansas. Missouri's renewed efforts...

Kansas governor signs bills enabling effort to entice Chiefs and Royals with new stadiums

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas' governor signed legislation Friday enabling the state to lure the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs and Major League Baseball's Royals away from neighboring Missouri by helping the teams pay for new stadiums. Gov. Laura Kelly's action came three days...

OPINION

Minding the Debate: What’s Happening to Our Brains During Election Season

The June 27 presidential debate is the real start of the election season, when more Americans start to pay attention. It’s when partisan rhetoric runs hot and emotions run high. It’s also a chance for us, as members of a democratic republic. How? By...

State of the Nation’s Housing 2024: The Cost of the American Dream Jumped 47 Percent Since 2020

Only 1 in 7 renters can afford homeownership, homelessness at an all-time high ...

Juneteenth is a Sacred American Holiday

Today, when our history is threatened by erasure, our communities are being dismantled by systemic disinvestment, Juneteenth can serve as a rallying cry for communal healing and collective action. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Georgia county says slave descendants can't use referendum to challenge rezoning of island community

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — Zoning changes by a Georgia county that some residents say threaten one of the South's last Gullah-Geechee communities of Black slave descendants can't be challenged with a referendum, an attorney said Monday in a letter to the judge considering a petition by local voters. ...

HBCU Talladega College is shutting down its gymnastics program. The team is trying to save it

TALLADEGA, Ala. (AP) — Talladega College is planning to drop its women's gymnastics program after just one season, but the gymnasts at the historically black school aren't giving up on saving their team. The team turned to GoFundMe trying to raise 0,000 by the end of July,...

Historically Black town in Louisiana's Cancer Alley is divided over a planned grain terminal

WALLACE, La. (AP) — Sisters Jo and Dr. Joy Banner live just miles from where their ancestors were enslaved more than 200 years ago in St. John the Baptist Parish, Louisiana. Their tidy Creole cottage cafe in the small riverfront town of Wallace lies yards from property their great-grandparents...

ENTERTAINMENT

Music Review: In a new expanded collection, how much of John Lennon's 'Mind Games' is too much?

The new remixed and expanded “Mind Games: The Ultimate Collection" is for those John Lennon fans who really, really love his inconsistent 1973 record of the same name. The problem is, many Lennon fans would rank the original “Mind Games” fourth or fifth among his most beloved...

Music Review: Phish rock out with energy and urgency on their 16th studio album, 'Evolve'

There might never be a more apt title for a Phish album than “Evolve,” the jam masters' 16th studio album and first in over four years. Just as this boundary-pushing quartet has progressed over four-plus decades by fusing rock, jazz, bluegrass and other freewheeling sounds,...

NBA agrees to terms on a record 11-year, billion media rights deal, AP source says

The NBA has agreed to terms on its new media deals, a record 11-year agreement worth billion that would assure player salaries will continue rising for the foreseeable future and one that will surely change how some viewers access the game for years to come. A person familiar with...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

From Biles to Sha'Carri, Team USA packed with star power heading into Olympic Games

From Simone Biles to Sha'Carri Richardson and Diana Taurasi to Katie Ledecky, Team USA will provide some of the...

A giant panda has given birth to a cub in a Dutch zoo, in a boost for the endangered mammals

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — A giant panda has given birth to a cub at a Dutch zoo, in a boost to the captive...

Protesters rally at GOP convention for abortion and immigrant rights, end to war in Gaza

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Hundreds of demonstrators converged Monday on downtown Milwaukee to protest around the...

Armenia launches joint military drills with the US amid souring ties with old ally Russia

YEREVAN, Armenia (AP) — Armenia on Monday launched joint military drills with the United States, a move that...

AP PHOTOS: In documenting violence in Haiti, you find bodies, but also ways people keep on living

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Violence permeates every fiber of Haitian society. It used to linger on the...

Two suspected attacks by Yemen's Houthi rebels strike ships in the Red Sea

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Two suspected attacks by Yemen’s Houthi rebels targeted ships in the Red...

Jessica Mintz and Joel Schectman Associated Press

SEATTLE — A decision by Consumer Reports against endorsing the latest iPhone because of reception problems threatens to tarnish Apple Inc.'s reputation, yet fans who have braved poor reception for years are likely to keep buying the product.
In fact, some analysts say Apple could simply ignore calls by bloggers and others to recall the iPhone 4 or offer free cases to mitigate the problems.
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As of Tuesday evening, Apple hadn't returned phone calls or e-mails about the Consumer Reports critique, which the magazine posted on its website Monday. While some Apple watchers find the company's responses to the reception issue objectionable, they don't see any penalties for Apple if it does nothing further.
People buy iPhones for emotional reasons, not because they're the best phones, said Deborah Mitchell, executive director of the Center for Brand and Product Management at the University of Wisconsin.
"People see you using the iPhone, and they think you are a certain type of person — hip, fresh and youthful in attitude," she said. "It's a brand that helps you identify yourself."
The iPhone has also been ahead of competitors when it comes to features such as easy Web browsing and shopping for music, movies and applications to download.
Greg Brown, a retired Philadelphia Eagles football player who lives in Sicklerville, N.J., said he has overlooked the iPhone's propensity for dropping calls because of congestion on the network of AT&T Inc., the iPhone's exclusive U.S. wireless carrier.
"When I am talking on the phone I like to finish the conversation before the phone call ends," Brown said. "But I forgive it because of all the features."
Consumer Reports said Monday it won't endorse the iPhone 4 as "recommended" because tests show that simply holding the gadget can cause reception to fade. Although Consumer Reports only recommends a handful of phones that it considers exceptional, this was the first time the publication isn't giving an iPhone its "recommended" stamp of approval.
The publication's tests confirmed suspicions from many iPhone customers. Hours after the iPhone 4 launched on June 24, people were writing on Apple's support website that gripping the phone a certain way made it show fewer "bars" of cell signal strength and even caused calls to disconnect.
The company's first response came in a curt note attributed to CEO Steve Jobs, who told one iPhone buyer to either hold the phone a different way or buy a case.
After complaints persisted, Apple issued a formal letter saying an illusion caused by software was the culprit. For years, the iPhone had been showing people too many bars, a problem Apple says it plans to fix with a software update. At least then, dropped calls in areas with weak networks wouldn't come as a surprise.
Apple also said all phones, not just the iPhone, have reception problems when a user's hand covers the antenna.
Consumer Reports, however, believes Apple is dodging responsibility for a larger hardware problem.
This doesn't mean Consumer Reports believes the iPhone 4 is all bad, editor Mike Gikas said. It outperformed every other smart phone on the market in other regards. And avoiding the problem is as simple as buying a $30 "bumper" case from Apple that goes around the edges. Consumer Reports says even a simple a strip of duct tape would work (though one can imagine Jobs shuddering at such aesthetic blasphemy).
"It's like finding a dream home but then finding a leak in the basement," Gikas said.
Carolina Milanesi, an analyst for Gartner Inc., believes Jobs' early e-mail was an atypical public-relations blunder on Apple's part.
"Reception is pretty crucial. You can't tell people, 'You can't hold the phone that way,'" Milanesi said.
A year or two ago, his comments might have prompted jokes, she said. But now, Apple is the world's largest technology company by market capitalization, and Jobs' remarks are being perceived as arrogant.
Brian Marshall, a Gleacher & Co. analyst who is typically very positive about Apple, was horrified when Apple said it had used a bad formula for calculating signal strength.
"That, to me, is atrocious," Marshall said. "It's so un-Apple-like. It shows a lack of attention to detail. Apple is a company that doesn't mess things up."
But neither Marshall nor Milanesi see the matter hurting Apple in the long run, even though shares slipped about 2 percent to close Tuesday at $251.80.
Marshall said the most likely scenario is that Apple does nothing beyond the software update it promised. Offering free cases or issuing a recall would amount to Apple admitting a problem.
"I don't believe for a second that they're shipping what they view as a faulty product," Marshall said.
Even if Apple does issue a recall, that's not likely to hurt the company.
"We think $100 million here and there for a bumper or maybe a recall is a drop in the bucket for Apple," Standard & Poor's equity analyst Clyde Montevirgen said. "Sure, it might affect the company on a headline level, but from a financial standpoint we really don't see much of an impact."
Schectman reported from New York. AP Videographer Luke Sheridan contributed to this report.