Friday, October 27, 2006


Flood of Users Jams Crime-Mapping Web Site

The new crime-mapping tool on the D.C. police department's Web site was overloaded with requests yesterday and working very slowly, frustrating users as more than a half-million hits jammed the system.

The overload happened the day after police announced the site, http://crimemap.dc.gov , which allows people to create maps of their neighborhoods, or of any sliver of the city, and immediately see what crimes have been reported there.

The site was set up to handle about 7,200 hits an hour. At certain points yesterday, visitors to the site generated as many as 73,600 hits an hour as they tried to make online crime maps. City officials doubled the site's capacity yesterday. They believe about 12,000 people visited the site yesterday. When the program is working smoothly, maps pop up within five seconds.

-- Allison Klein


Grant Enables Journalists to Mentor Students

George Washington University's School of Media and Public Affairs has received a $200,000 grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation to allow veteran journalists from major news organizations to spend four weeks mentoring minority high school students.

The 2006-07 mentors are Horace Holmes and Stephen Pozniak of WJLA (Channel 7), Seth Stern of Congressional Quarterly, Walter Ray Watson of National Public Radio, and Pat Wingert of Newsweek. Beginning this fall and continuing next spring, each will aid students at four Washington schools -- Cardozo Senior High School, César Chávez Public Charter School for Public Policy/Parkside, Friendship-Edison Collegiate Academy and McKinley Technology High School. Officials hope to revitalize student-run news media and create interest in journalism careers.


Georgetown Creating Center on Global Health

A $10 million gift to Georgetown University from Linda and Timothy O'Neill will be used to establish the Institute for National and Global Health Law.

The O'Neill Institute, co-founded by the Georgetown University Law Center and the Georgetown University School of Nursing and Health Studies, will create centers on global health; disease prevention and health outcomes; health regulation and governance; and health care financing and organization.

Project plans include training ministers of health and other health officials from developing countries in public health and health systems; using legal tools such as tax policy, disclosure of ingredients and zoning-law reforms that would allow more nutritious choices and better environments for exercise and active lifestyles; and collaborating with the World Health Organization to draft its model public health law and guidelines on pandemic flu.

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