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Seattle TEDx is SRO

TEDx, a unique speaker’s forum presenting thought leaders and their ellucidating insights in Technology, Entertainment and Design, packed a sold-out house at Seattle’s Pacific Science Center on Friday. The brand name comes from California, where people pay thousands of dollars to get in and see a series of 18-minute power point presentations about big ideas.

TEDx Seattle Master of Ceremonies Hanson Hosein, who directs the masters in digital media program at the University of Washington, said this yeat’s theme of social media and entrepreneurial engagement, characterize the people of the region. Topics ranged from Sci-Fi writer Greg Bear’s analysis of the “vast social brain” in our interconnected Web world, to UW psychologist Sapna Cheryan’s talk on how stereotypes have influenced the martriculation of women in computer science and engineering, to Ben Huh’s personal odyssey in founding the Cheezburger Network. Revisit the topics on the event blog. at http://tedxseattle.com/categories/blog/ and Flickr photos here.

Following TEDx Seattle, the University of Washington’s Master of Communication in Digital Media (MCDM) launched its community laboratory Media Space and awarded its first Digital Disruptor prize to groundbreaking data visualization company Tableau Software. [24×7]

Washington Approves Verizon-Frontier deal
Washington regulators have approved a plan by Frontier Communications’to acquire Verizon’s
phone, cable TV and Internet service in Oregon, Washington and a dozen other states in an $8.6 billion deal announced in May 2009. Verizon will keep its lucrative cell phone business. The sales is contingent on Frontier agreeing to a range of consumer protections.

The deal will affectVerizon’s phone territory in Portland’s suburbs, parts of east Clark County, and Seattle’s suburbs. It does not include the cities of Portland or Seattle, both of which are served by Qwest Communications.

State regulators in Oregon and Washington initially opposed the deal, but agreed to OK it in exchange for Frontier’s commitments to improve broadband access and approve state oversight of phone rates and customer service standards. Oregon formally approved the sale in February.

Washington regulators said they want Frontier to freeze phone rates for three years, pay sanctions if service quality falls, and allow long-distance customers to switch without a fee. Additionally, Frontier would pay $40 million to expand high-speed Internet access in Washington.

Washington said Frontier has 10 days to accept the state’s proposal, and company spokesman Steven Crosby said the company expects to do so. [24×7]

Get more info in the Seattle24x7 blog