Good stuff

Nothing but a hound dog

  • Happy Birthday, Elvis! -- 8 p.m. Dec. 5, 2 p.m. Dec. 6. Jim Anderson and the Rebels will perform the early (1954 to 1966) hits of Elvis Presley -- "Heartbreak Hotel," "Don't Be Cruel," "Jailhouse Rock" and more. Firehouse Arts Center, 4444 Railroad Ave., Pleasanton. 925-931-4848, Tickets: $12 to $25. www.firehousearts.org.

    Seen & heard

    Country club angels

    Ruth Concannon, of Danville, and members of the "18th Hole Ladies" of Castlewood Country Club in Pleasanton played Santa again this year.

    Every Christmas for the past 14 years, Concannon has placed her "Angel Requests" (a piece of paper with a specific gift request) on a table at the country club. Women at the club pick up the requests and buy the gifts for the needy.

    By the time they were done this year, Concannon's living room was filled with more than 600 presents that were handed over to staff members at Tri-Valley Haven, Shepherd's Gate and STAND.

    -- Susan Pollard, Staff

    Past Times

    Jan. 3, 1973: Top stories of the Valley Pioneer

    Headline: "Electronic Checkout System, Local Market Fascinates Customers"


    Advertisement

    The Safeway store in Alamo is helping conduct a prime test of experimental electronic checkout equipment that will establish a pattern for checkout stands in food stores and discount-type stores throughout the nation.

    The Alamo unit was selected as the site for a full-scale test operation. With Safeway's store operations and methods engineering department working with Dynamo Industries, the system was installed and carefully checked for "bugs" and is apparently now looked upon with high enthusiasm by everyone involved.

    More than 90 percent of the items in the store are attached with a sticker, about a third the size of a postage stamp, that shows the actual price for the customer's benefit plus a series of codes that shows an optical scanner what the 10 digit UPC (Uniform Product Code) is. Immediately, the price is shown on an electronic display board while pertinent data is being printed on a slip.

    As the scanner passes over the sticker, the terminal, which takes the place of the cash register, instructs the computer to print the code number of the item, the price, the department, the tax and anything else the store wants to program.

    One customer said "I think it is fascinating, a real breakthrough over the old-fashioned way. Someday, I expect to be able to phone into the stores computer, have my order filled when I arrive and the total will probably be automatically charged to my checking account."

    Don't be surprised if that phase of a sophisticated store level computerized system isn't just around the corner.

    Groceries: Safeway -- zucchini, 19 cents a pound; Bel Aire frozen 16-ounce cheese pizza, 69 cents; ground beef, 79 cents a pound.

    Real Estate: Better Homes Realty, of Danville -- Newly painted three-bedroom, two-bath home. Priced at $37,950.

    Answer to last week's question: Alamo.

    Trivia Question: Atop which Bay Area mountain was air defense radar placed in 1959?

    Contact Louise Hartman at lhartman@bayarea- newsgroup.com or follow her on Twitter at Newsie1195.