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Portal:California

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Seal of California.
Location of California within the United States.
Flag of California.svg

California is a state in the Pacific Region of the United States. With 39.6 million residents across a total area of about 163,696 square miles (423,970 km2), California is the most populous U.S. state and the third-largest by area. The state capital is Sacramento. The Greater Los Angeles Area and the San Francisco Bay Area are the nation's second- and fifth-most populous urban regions, with 18.7 million and 9.7 million residents respectively. Los Angeles is California's most populous city, and the country's second-most populous, after New York City. California also has the nation's most populous county, Los Angeles County, and its largest county by area, San Bernardino County. The City and County of San Francisco is both the country's second-most densely populated major city after New York City and the fifth-most densely populated county, behind only four of the five New York City boroughs.

California's $3.0 trillion economy is larger than that of any other state; larger than those of Texas and Florida combined; and is the largest sub-national economy in the world. If it were a country, California would be the fifth-largest economy in the world (larger than the United Kingdom, France, or India), and the 36th-most populous . The Greater Los Angeles Area and the San Francisco Bay Area are the nation's second- and third-largest urban economies ($1.253 trillion and $907 billion respectively ), after the New York metropolitan area. The San Francisco Bay Area PSA had the nation's highest GDP per capita in 2017 (~$94,000) among large PSAs, and is home to three of the world's ten largest companies by market capitalization and four of the world's ten richest people.

California culture is considered a global trendsetter in popular culture, innovation, environmentalism, and politics. As a result of the state's diversity and migration, California integrates foods, languages, and traditions from other areas across the country and around the globe. It is considered the origin of the American film industry, the hippie counterculture, fast food, beach and car culture, the Internet, and the personal computer, among others. The San Francisco Bay Area and the Greater Los Angeles Area are widely seen as centers of the global technology and entertainment industries, respectively. California has a very diverse economy: 58% of the state's economy is centered on finance, government, real estate services, technology, and professional, scientific, and technical business services. Although it accounts for only 1.5% of the state's economy, California's agriculture industry has the highest output of any U.S. state.

California is bordered by Oregon to the north, Nevada and Arizona to the east, and the Mexican state of Baja California to the south (with the coast being on the west). The state's diverse geography ranges from the Pacific Coast in the west to the Sierra Nevada mountain range in the east, and from the redwoodDouglas fir forests in the northwest to the Mojave Desert in the southeast. The Central Valley, a major agricultural area, dominates the state's center. Although California is well-known for its warm Mediterranean climate, the large size of the state results in climates that vary from moist temperate rainforest in the north to arid desert in the interior, as well as snowy alpine in the mountains. Over time, drought and wildfires have become more pervasive features.

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Islais Creek, with an abandoned, five storey high copra crane shown
Islais Creek or Islais Creek Channel (previously known as Du Vrees Creek, Islais Channel and Islais Swamp) is a small creek in San Francisco, California. The current name of the creek is said to be derived from a Salinan Native American word "slay" or "islay," the name for the Prunus ilicifolia wild cherries. Once the largest body of water in the city, almost the entire creek today is covered by landfill and converted to an underground culvert and a storm drain, with remnants of the creek flowing at both Glen Canyon Park and near Third Street.

The original Islais Creek stretched from the San Francisco Bay 3.5 miles (5.6 km) west into the Glen Canyon Park and O’Shaughnessy Hollow. The creek, once the largest body of water within San Francisco covering an area of 5,000 acres (7.813 sq mi; 20.234 km2), had two branches. One branch originated near the southern slope of Twin Peaks, formerly known as San Miguel Hills, slightly north of today's Portola Drive. It then coursed through Glen Canyon and through what is now Bosworth Street until it reached the bottom of the Mission Street viaduct at I-280. The other branch began at the Cayuga Avenue and Regent Street intersection. The creek flowed from the intersection down to the Mission Street viaduct where the two branches joined.


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Tafoni at Salt Point, Sonoma Coast, California
Credit: Dawn Endico

Salt Point State Park is a state park located in Sonoma County, California, United States. The park covers 6,000 acres (24 km²) on the coast of Northern California with 20 miles (32 km) of hiking trails and over six miles of a rough rocky coast line including Salt Point which protrudes into the Pacific Ocean.

State facts

  • Total area: 163,696 mi2
    • Land: 156,002 mi2
    • Water: 7,694 mi2
  • Highest elevation: 14,505 ft (Mount Whitney)
  • Population 39,250,017 (2016 est)
  • Admission to the Union: September 9, 1850 (31st)

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Joshua A. Norton
Joshua Abraham Norton (c. 1819 – January 8, 1880), also known as His Imperial Majesty Emperor Norton I, was a celebrated citizen of San Francisco, California who proclaimed himself "Emperor of these United States" and, in 1859, "Protector of Mexico." Born in London, Norton spent most of his early life in South Africa; he emigrated to San Francisco in 1849 after receiving a bequest of $40,000 from his father's estate. Norton initially made a living as a businessman, but he lost his fortune investing in Peruvian rice.

After losing a lawsuit in which he tried to void his rice contract, Norton left San Francisco. He returned a few years later, apparently mentally unbalanced, claiming to be the emperor of the United States. Although he had no political power, and his influence extended only so far as he was humored by those around him, he was treated deferentially in San Francisco, and currency issued in his name was honored in the establishments he frequented.

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The Hollywood Sign

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Van Nuys Boulevard at the Metro Orange Line crossing

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Fred Allen with a dummy
California is a fine place to live - if you happen to be an orange.
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Kern River
Credit: Rogerroger.org

The Kern River is a river in the U.S. state of California, approximately 164 miles (264 km) long. It drains an area of the southern Sierra Nevada mountains northeast of Bakersfield. Fed by snowmelt near Mount Whitney, the river passes through scenic canyons in the mountains and is a popular destination for whitewater rafting and kayaking.

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Economy: California State LotteryCalifornia locations by per capita incomeCoachella Valley Enterprise ZoneSan Jose Assembly PlantShell Development EmeryvilleSilicon ValleySilicon Valley Leadership GroupStanford Research ParkCalifornia unemployment statistics


Government of California: List of California state agenciesAssociation of Monterey Bay Area GovernmentsCalifornia Attorney GeneralCalifornia State Board of EducationCDF Aviation Management ProgramCalPERSCalifornia Air Resources BoardCalifornia Commission for Economic DevelopmentCalifornia Department of Boating and WaterwaysCalifornia Department of Forestry and Fire ProtectionCalifornia Department of InsuranceCalifornia Insurance Commissioner election, 2006California Legislative Analyst's OfficeCalifornia Military DepartmentCalifornia Public Utilities CommissionCalifornia SpeaksCalifornia State Lands CommissionCalifornia State LotteryCalifornia executive branchCaliforniaVolunteersCalifornia State CapitolList of California District AttorneysDistricts in CaliforniaState of California enterprise IT systemsDepartment of Fair Employment and HousingCalifornia Geological SurveyGovernor of California11-99 FoundationCalifornia Institute for Regenerative MedicineCalifornia Insurance CommissionerJoint Powers AuthorityLocal Agency Formation CommissionSecretary of State of CaliforniaList of law enforcement agencies in CaliforniaCalifornia State ControllerCalifornia State PoliceCalifornia Department of TransportationCalifornia State TreasurerWestlands Water District

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