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  • 2014 General Election Results Certified

    VOTEFinal Certification in Mason County. Each county certifies results on November 25, 2014. The Secretary of State certifies final results by December 4, 2014.The results posted before certification are unofficial. Voter turnout in Mason County was 59.5%. A total of 20,903 ballots were counted.… Read More +

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  • October Unemployment Rates Released

    UnemployByCountyOct2014Unemployment in Washington State ticked up to 6.0% in October from a rate of 5.7% the month prior. The federal unemployment rate crept down to 5.8%. Thurston County reported a modest 6.3% unemployment rate, which was notably lower than most neighboring counties, which included 8.1% in… Read More +

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  • Huskies Prep For Apple Cup Vs. Washington St

    applecup2014Washington coach Chris Petersen had barely sat down Monday when he started getting peppered with questions about coaching in his first Apple Cup. Petersen at least wanted a moment to recognize what the Huskies accomplished over the weekend, becoming bowl eligible and taking some of the stress out of his first matchup with Washington State.

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New Car Shrinks by Nearly Half for Compact Parking

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2013-08_f082aa5a04.jpgKorean Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (NEW YORK) -- The Smart car might face some stiff competition in the tiny vehicle market. Researchers at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) unveiled a prototype car that can fold itself almost in half with just the press of a button on the driver's smartphone.

In-Soo Suh, an associate professor of the Graduate School for Green Transportation at KAIST, named the car the Armadillo-T.  After the car is parked, a stabilizing wheel pops out from underneath, followed by the back of the car curling forwards and upwards, much like its namesake desert mammal.  The Armadillo-T shrinks down to a little under five-and-a-half feet.

Suh and his colleagues have found additional ways to bring cutting edge technology to the Armadillo-T.  In place of side view mirrors are cameras that both take up less space and reduce blind spots by providing a more comprehensive side view.  The car can also be partly controlled from the smartphone, allowing drivers to step out and better see how they're navigating tricky parking spaces.

"This car is ideal for urban travels, including car-sharing and transit transfer," said Suh in a statement.  "I expect that people living in cities will eventually shift their preferences from bulky, petro-engine cars to smaller and lighter electric cars."

Nick Gianaris, the executive director of the Composite Vehicle Research Center at Michigan State University, noted that the Armadillo-T has four individual motors in each of the wheels, rather than one centralized motor.

"The speed of the car is limited, but the control of each motor provides you safety," he told ABC News.

People who complained about the Smart car's lack of speed probably won't find much solace in the Armadillo-T.  The prototype car's top speed currently stands at around 37 miles per hour, half as fast as the Smart car's 75 miles per hour.

Overall, Gianaris thinks that though the car is futuristic looking, it's also realistic.

"It's going to be a lot of touching and feeling around," he said in regards to the Armadillo-T's future.  "But it's a good thing."

According to KAIST's statement, three shrunken Armadillo-T's can fit in a single five-meter parking spot.  However, Suh and his colleagues haven't provided information on how a car could get out if it's cramped bumper-to-bumper between other cars.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

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PUD3 - Areas affected by today's outage: Blacksmith Lake Haven Lake Lake Christine Mission Lake Panther Lake Tiger Lake Toonerville Wooten Lake

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