Gadgets: Rachio Iro Wi-Fi sprinkler system

I was emailed an offer to try out the Rachio Iro sprinkler system, described as easy to set up and use. "As for the sprinkler, you plug it in where your old controller was and then it helps create a customized watering schedule with you home Wi-Fi network. You then can change or update it from your phone anywhere you have a signal."


Property values spike in Merced County

Stanislaus County saw the state’s highest year-over-year percentage increase in property values at 11.4 percent, with total-assessed values at $39.7 billion for 2014-15. Merced County had the second highest percent increase, 9.3 percent, and San Joaquin County was fourth at 8.8 percent.


Career Industry Day exposes students to many choices

More than 1,000 high school sophomores from throughout Merced County and Chowchilla got a better understanding of their future career options and the education necessary to get them there at a Career Industry Day on Tuesday at the county fairgrounds.


Virgin Galactic's allure: space and celebrities

The explosion of a Virgin Galactic rocket ship during a test flight over California has almost certainly dashed founder Richard Branson's goal of starting passenger flights next spring. Information about Virgin Galactic, its backers, and its goals:


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