Home What's Brewing? Brainy & Literate Seattle

Brainy & Literate Seattle

The city of Seattle’s Web site was named the best in the nation by The Center for Digital Government.

The award will be presented at the 2006 Best of Web and Digital Government Achievement Awards event in Las Vegas on Sept. 22.

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According to Folsom, Calif.-based Center for Digital Government officials, “The Best of Web is an annual awards program that recognizes the most innovative, user-friendly state and local government portals.”

The city’s site is located at www.seattle.gov. In addition, King County’s Web site, www.metrokc.gov, was honored as the third best county Web site in the nation. [24×7]

Envy of the Green! We’re Brainy & Literate, Too!
While we’re basking in the glory of our digital government, let us also boast of our collective intellect. If you equate education with intelligence, then, according to a CNN extrapolation, the smartest city in the United States is Seattle – 52.7 percent of our residents age 25 or older have completed a bachelor’s degree or higher.

The education rankings were released this month by the U.S. Census Bureau. Seattle’s also been ranked as the most literate city in the United States by Central Connecticut State University, beating out Minneapolis, Washington and Atlanta. That rating was based on such things as the number of booksellers, libraries and newspaper circulation – as well as educational attainment.

Seattle has more than its share of residents with advanced degrees: 20.5 percent. Only Washington, D.C., has more. [24×7]

The NW MySpace Connection
The Seattle Post-Intelligencer’s John Cook has made the Northwest connection between MySpace and the UW.

MySpace co-founder Chris DeWolfe — who is described as the “business brain” behind MySpace — actually studied finance at The University of Washington.

“I am sure the UW business school, which is in the middle of a fundraising campaign (Former Starbucks CEO Orin Smith today donated $4.5 million to the effort), is well aware of the connection,” cites Cook.

However, the UW will have some competition. While DeWolfe did his undergrad work at the UW, he received his M.B.A. from the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business.

Turns out DeWolfe is not the only guy from the Pacific Northwest on the MySpace executive team. I overlooked chief technical officer Aber Whitcomb, who hails from Bellingham and also attended the UW. [24×7]

Microsoft Cries Foul at Stolen Interface
Microsoft Expo’s project leader, Garry Wiseman, wrote a blog post last week criticizing Sina, one of China’s largest search engines, saying “Sina.com steals our design and graphics”.

The post highlights the similar look and feel of Sina’s new classifieds site to a previous release of Expo, including the identical color scheme and a pushpin image that appears to have been flat out stolen:

“We were recently made aware (thanks to a comment on our blog by Phillipe) of a new classifieds site in China that had not only lifted our previous user interface’s look & feel, but also directly copied some of our graphics (note the cool pushpin graphic that our designer Becky created). The shocking thing is that the website in question is owned by one of China’s largest search engines called Sina.com. Couldn’t they afford to hire a designer? Check out the screenshots of our previous UI and then visit: http://post.sina.com.cn/v3_index.php

Decide for yourself if Sina ripped of Microsoft. There are definitely similarities, although the irony of Microsoft crying foul over a stolen user interface will not be lost on some Mac users. [24×7]