Drexel Gets State Grant to Develop Video Games

Tetris on the side of the Cira Center. Drexel's Entrepreneurial Game Studio is getting a state grant to help grow Pennsylvania's digital gaming industry.

Tetris on the side of the Cira Center. Drexel’s Entrepreneurial Game Studio is getting a state grant to help grow Pennsylvania’s digital gaming industry.

Technically Philly reports that Drexel University is one of three schools to receive state grants to help develop a video game industry in the state. Drexel will receive $200,000 for its Entrepreneurial Game Studio, which aims to serve helps students start their own game companies in Philadelphia.

Carnegie Mellon University and Harrisburg University of Science and Technology are also receiving grants. The three schools will also share an additional $150,000 for collaborative efforts, like a statewide gaming conference.
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Ramsey Pleased With DOJ Report on Philly Officer-Related Shootings

Matt Rourke/AP

Matt Rourke/AP

The U.S. Department of Justice has delivered a draft report to the Philadelphia Police Department on how to curb officer-related shootings in the city, the Baltimore Sun reports. (Yes, we’re confused by that too.)

Commissioner Charles Ramsey asked the feds to investigate his agency last year after a Philly.com investigation showed that shootings by police were rising even though overall crime in the city was coming down. Ramsey did not describe the recommendations in the draft report, but seemed pleased by what the Justice Department found.

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Paid Sick Leave Report Due Soon

Photo | Jeff Fusco

Photo | Jeff Fusco

When Mayor Nutter reversed course this year and said he was suddenly in favor of mandating that Philly businesses offer paid sick leave to employees — a policy he had vetoed twice in recent years — he didn’t just sign one of the bills he previously punted: He sent the idea to a task force for examination.

That task force is just about complete with its work KYW reports. But familiar divisions remain over the issue.

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5 Reasons Philadelphia Should Be Thankful

And the No. 1 reason to be thankful...

And the No. 1 reason to be thankful…

It’s Thanksgiving Week! That means — it addition to some well-deserved time off for most of us — it’s time to actually contemplate what makes us thankful. Let me offer five suggestions for Philadelphia in 2014:

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PGW Sale Hopes Dim

Photo | Jeff Fusco

Photo | Jeff Fusco

The proposed sale of Philadelphia Gas Works to a private Connecticut company — a sale long considered on life support, at best — is one step closer to outright death.

UIL Holdings said Thursday that it is ending its pursuit of the Philadelphia utility; it will not renew its option to buy when that agreement ends at the end of December. The announcement came after Thursday’s City Council meeting, considered the last chance to jump-start the process to result in a sale by year’s end.

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Dwight Evans Mulls Mayoral Run

State Rep. Dwight Evans

State Rep. Dwight Evans

This was unexpected: State Rep. Dwight Evans says he’s contemplating a run for mayor — his third such race, if he makes it, since 1999.

The Inquirer reports that Evans was encouraged by an October poll showing him running second only to former District Attorney Lynne Abraham — among six likely candidates — in a mayoral matchup.

“I’m having conversations with people to see if there is an avenue to look at in this mayor’s race,” he said. “I’m looking, thinking, seeing what kind of political and financial support there might be.”

“I feel like I am in a pretty good position,” he said. “I still have a long way to go. Where you start is not necessarily where you end up. You just try to put together your message and organization, raise your money, and try to connect with people who think your candidacy has something to offer the city. I think mine would.”

Evans has held his office more than 30 years. He tried running for mayor in 1999 and 2007; Philly Mag profiled him during both runs.

People Power in Philadelphia

Shutterstock.com

Shutterstock.com

I’m so proud of my city.

Do we say that enough in Philadelphia? Outside of the Philly Love Notes blog, probably not often enough. But every once in a while, something happens that reveals the underlying character of the city’s population — and we sometimes surprise ourselves when that something is good.

Well, that something happened this week.

Here’s what happened. The state’s Basic Education Funding Committee came to town for two days of hearings. It had a lot of people on the schedule: Mayor Nutter. Superintendent William Hite. Experts from Penn and Temple. School choice advocates. A real array of the city’s smartest and best-known officials.

Not on the schedule? Parents.

Not on the schedule? Students.

The Basic Education Funding Commission wanted to come to town and hear from just about everybody except the people who are most directly affected by the inadequacies in how we fund our schools.

Crazy, right?

Well, Philadelphia didn’t let that stand.

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Comcast: Are Vultures Circling the Merger?

Photo | Jeff Fusco

Photo | Jeff Fusco

OK, so it’s probably a bit much to say the vultures are circling over the Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger. After all, the “vulture” in question is John Malone of Charter — the guy who originally was trying to buy Time Warner before Comcast swooped in — and he still gives Comcast’s efforts an 80 percent chance of succeeding.

Only thing: Those odds are less impressive than they used to be.

Deadline Hollywood reports:

Liberty Media Chairman John Malone hasn’t lost his lust for Time Warner Cable. That’s the unmistakable message he delivered today at Liberty’s Investor Day gathering when he was asked whether Charter — where he’s the top shareholder — would take another run at TWC if its current $45 billion deal with Comcast falters. “Hell yes,” Malone said, reaffirming his reputation as one of media’s most reliable straight shooters. The answer could be important: A small, but growing, group of investors question whether the Comcast-TWC deal will survive FCC and Justice Department scrutiny.

Multichannel News adds:

Liberty Media chairman John Malone said he would pursue Time Warner Cable again if Its current deal with Comcast is rejected by regulators.  However, he noted that his current arrangement with both companies is probably the best outcome.   “Oh yes,” Malone said in an immediate response to a question in whether he would want Charter Communications to restart its pursuit of Time Warner Cable in the absence of a Comcast deal. “That said, we’re happy with the deal that was negotiated. In many ways it’s a better deal than going after 100% of Time Warner Cable.”

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