Portal:San Francisco Bay Area

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The San Francisco Bay Area Portal

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The San Francisco Bay Area (referred to locally as the Bay Area) is a populous region surrounding the San Francisco and San Pablo estuaries in Northern California. The region encompasses the major cities and metropolitan areas of San Jose, San Francisco, and Oakland, along with smaller urban and rural areas. The Bay Area's nine counties are Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma. Home to approximately 7.68 million people, the nine-county Bay Area contains many cities, towns, airports, and associated regional, state, and national parks, connected by a network of roads, highways, railroads, bridges, tunnels, and commuter rail. The combined statistical area of the region is the second-largest in California (after the Greater Los Angeles area), the fifth-largest in the United States, and the 43rd-largest urban area in the world with 8.80 million people.

The Bay Area has the second-most Fortune 500 companies in the United States, after the New York metropolitan area, and is known for its natural beauty, liberal politics, entrepreneurship, and diversity. The area ranks second in highest density of college graduates, after the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area and performs above the state median household income in the 2010 census; it includes the five highest California counties by per capita income and two of the top 25 wealthiest counties in the United States. Based on a 2013 population report from the California Department of Finance, the Bay Area is the only region in California where the rate of people migrating in from other areas in the United States is greater than the rate of those leaving the region, led by Alameda and Contra Costa counties. (more...)

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SRI International (SRI), founded as Stanford Research Institute, is an American nonprofit research institute headquartered in Menlo Park, California. The trustees of Stanford University established SRI in 1946 as a center of innovation to support economic development in the region. SRI is now one of the largest contract research institutes in the world.

The institute formally separated from Stanford University in 1970 and became known as SRI International in 1977. SRI describes its mission as discovery and the application of science and technology for knowledge, commerce, prosperity, and peace. It performs client-sponsored research and development for government agencies, commercial businesses, and private foundations. It also licenses its technologies, and creates spin-off companies.

SRI's headquarters are located near the Stanford University campus. Physicist Curtis Carlson has been SRI's president and CEO since 1998. SRI's annual revenue in 2013 was approximately $540 million. SRI employs about 2,300 people. Sarnoff Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of SRI since 1988, was fully integrated into SRI in January 2011. SRI International Sarnoff is used as a brand name for business activities based in Princeton, New Jersey.

SRI's focus areas include biomedical sciences, chemistry and materials, computing, Earth and space systems, economic development, education and learning, energy and environmental technology, security and national defense, as well as sensing and devices. SRI has received more than 1,000 patents and patent applications worldwide. (more...)

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Harvey Milk in 1978 at Mayor Moscone's Desk crop.jpg

Harvey Bernard Milk (May 22, 1930 – November 27, 1978) was an American politician who became the first openly gay person to be elected to public office in California when he won a seat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. Politics and gay activism were not his early interests; he was not open about his homosexuality and did not participate in civic matters until around the age of 40, after his experiences in the counterculture of the 1960s.

Milk moved from New York City to settle in San Francisco in 1972 amid a migration of gay men to the Castro District. He took advantage of the growing political and economic power of the neighborhood to promote his interests, and ran unsuccessfully for political office three times. His theatrical campaigns earned him increasing popularity, and Milk won a seat as a city supervisor in 1977, part of the broader social changes the city was experiencing.

Milk served almost 11 months in office and was responsible for passing a stringent gay rights ordinance for the city. On November 27, 1978, Milk and Mayor George Moscone were assassinated by Dan White, another city supervisor who had recently resigned but wanted his job back. Milk's election was made possible by and was a key component of a shift in San Francisco politics.

Despite his short career in politics, Milk became an icon in San Francisco and a martyr in the gay community. In 2002, Milk was called "the most famous and most significantly open LGBT official ever elected in the United States". Anne Kronenberg, his final campaign manager, wrote of him: "What set Harvey apart from you or me was that he was a visionary. He imagined a righteous world inside his head and then he set about to create it for real, for all of us." Milk was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2009. (more...)

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Mountain View is a city in Santa Clara County, in the San Francisco Bay Area of California. It is named for its views of the Santa Cruz Mountains. The city shares its borders with the cities of Palo Alto, Los Altos, and Sunnyvale, as well as Moffett Federal Airfield and the San Francisco Bay. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 74,066.

Situated in Silicon Valley, Mountain View is home to many high technology companies. In 1956, Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory, the first company to develop silicon semiconductor devices in what came to be known as Silicon Valley, was established in the city by William Shockley. Today, many of the largest technology companies in the world are headquartered in the city, including Google, Mozilla Foundation, Symantec, and Intuit. (more...)

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The Bay Area by year

1899
Architectural detail from the SF Teacher's College period

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Vault with gold bars, Department of the Treasury. Bureau of the Mint. U.S. Mint, San Francisco, California (ca 1935)

Did you know...

San Francisco Bay Salt Ponds
San Francisco Bay Salt Ponds

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May/June 2013

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Cal linebacker Shea McIntyre following the 2008 Big Game

The Big Game is the American college football rivalry game played by the California Golden Bears football team of the University of California, Berkeley and Stanford Cardinal football team of Stanford University. First played 130 years ago in 1892, it is the ninth most played college football rivalry game in the United States. "The Play", in their 1982 game, is considered one of the most memorable plays in American sports. (Cal linebacker Shea McIntyre, celebrating Berkeley reclaiming the Stanford Axe, pictured)

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~ Twiggy
*more quotes about San Francisco from Wikiquote

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Bay Area regions, geographic features and protected areas

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San Francisco at sunset
image credit: BDS2006

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