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Daily Memo:

Business phone service opens office in Medford

FairPoint Communications, which sells business telephone service, has opened a permanent office in Medford, providing a base for its 14 area employees.

The company, based in Charlotte, N.C., has had sales employees in the area for several months but just recently opened the office in Building 101 at 1050 Knutson Ave. The phone number is 772-9685.

Construction due to start on medical office building

GRANTS PASS — Construction is scheduled to begin Wednesday on a 20,000-square-foot medical office building adjacent to the new Three Rivers Community Hospital at 500 Ramsay Ave.

The two-story building, owned by Three Valley Enterprises, will house Cardiology Consultants, Dr. Robert Hoellrich's office and part of Three Rivers? operation. About 3,700 square feet are still available for lease.

A public ground-breaking ceremony is scheduled for — p.m. Wednesday.

Some Verizon unions call off strike, others refuse

WASHINGTON — Verizon telephone workers in the Washington area and other mid-Atlantic states continued to strike Monday while their unions continued to wrangle with management over contract details, even as employees in New York and New England began returning to work.

The strike against the nation's largest regional telephone company, which began Aug. 6, will not end until the unions representing three groups of workers have signed contracts. Officials of those unions would not predict when that would happen, but said they hoped to reach a final agreement quickly.

Verizon came to terms Sunday night with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers and one contingent of the Communications Workers of America that represents workers in the New York-New England region formerly served by Nynex Corp., which was acquired by Bell Atlantic Corp. in 1997.

The CWA unit still striking represents 35,000 workers in the southern region formerly served by Bell Atlantic. (Bell Atlantic changed its name to Verizon Communications after acquiring GTE Corp. this year.)

Pentium 4?s a whiz, but computers aren't ready

SAN JOSE, Calif. — Intel Corp.?s new, turbocharged Pentium 4 processor aims to make computers into hotrods capable of ripping through even the most demanding applications.

At the Intel Developer's Forum that begins today, the Santa Clara, Calif.-based company will be touting the Pentium 4, trying to encourage software developers to write programs that exploit its ability to speed up graphics, speech and streaming video.

Intel's new chip will run at 1.4 gigahertz, or 1.4 billion cycles per second. Most computers sold now run much slower — — at 700 megahertz or less.

A radical redesign of Intel's consumer-targeted processor line, the Pentium 4 squeezes 42 million transistors onto a single chip, up from 28 million transistors on the Pentium III.

National Geographic makes dot-com deal with iExplore

NEW YORK — Take a Web site launched six months ago by a 31-year-old entrepreneur. Combine with a respected, 112-year-old educational and research institution. What you get is the first major dot-com deal by the National Geographic Society.

National Geographic announced Monday that it is taking a 30 percent stake in iExplore, an online travel agent that offers trips to more than 150 countries through an array of tour operators.

From staff and wire reports