Try your hand at this week’s news quiz and see how well you’ve kept up with all the news in the past week or so:
1. Two Florida State academic department assistants resigned after …
a) They were accused of supplying athletes with steroids
b) 23 athletes were accused of cheating on exams
c) They were accused of sexual harrassment
d) They got mad at head coach Bobby Bowden
2. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson returns to his football background in Disney’s new film …
a) “The Game Plan”
b) “The Final Game”
c) “Game On”
d) “Game Over”
3. The See You at the Pole movement, in which students pray near their school’s flagpole, was started where?
a) Burleson, Texas
b) Ferguson, Mo.
c) Cottonwood Falls, Kan.
d) Holy Cross, Ky.
4. What did Blazers’ coach Doug Sauter do to help stop a spooked horse during an Oklahoma State Fair event?
a) He started singing “O Canada”
b) He wiggled his mustache at the animal
c) He bit the horse’s ear
d) He threw chocolate bars in front of the horse
5. It didn’t last long, but for the first time in 37 years, the United Auto Workers called a nationwide strike against which automaker?
a) Ford Motor Co.
b) Toyota of North America
c) Chrysler Corp.
d) General Motors Corp.
6. What was in the air to prompt the Oklahoma Allergy and Asthma Clinic to issue a “very high” alert?
a) Ragweed pollen
b) Mountain cedar
7. What will Seaboard Foods use to make biodiesel fuel at its new plant in Guymon?
a) French fries
b) Pork fat
c) Crude oil
8. What is the name of Nike’s new shoe made for American Indians?
a) Air Moccasin
c) Native N7
9. What well-known rocker is scheduled to bring his show to the Ford Center on Dec. 6?
a) Robert Plant
b) Alice Cooper
c) Nigel Tufnel
d) Ozzy Osbourne
10. Clear Channel Communications, the nation’s largest radio station operator, agreed to a buyout by a private equity group. Which of the following is NOT one of Clear Channel’s stations in Oklahoma City?
11. Why did Nickelodeon plan to stop broadcasting programming for three hours on Saturday?
a) Scheduled maintenance
b) A format change
c) To switch to a new satellite
d) To urge children to stop watching TV and play
12. Gov. Brad Henry went on a fishing trip last week with several trial lawyers, including three past presidents of the Oklahoma Trial Lawyers Association. Where did Henry go?
13. At the Lazy E Arena near Guthrie the third annual Oklahoma Wildlife Expo opens Friday, and it will try to increase attendance by offering free food samples. All of the following will be offered free to attendees at Taste of the Wild except which one?
a) Buffalo chili
b) Fried rattlesnake
c) Venison bacon
d) Fried blue catfish fillet
14. Mike Turpen, a Democrat, received a certificate and personal congratulations from former President Clinton for his efforts in raising $509,402 for what cause?
a) Hillary’s run for president
b) The Democratic National Committee
c) Legal Aid
d) The Clinton Global Initiative
15. An Oklahoma singer’s album “… Duets” debuted last week at No. 1 on the Billboard Top 200 album chart. Whose CD was it?
a) Reba McEntire
b) Garth Brooks
c) Toby Keith
d) Carrie Underwood
16. Mailea Hoffman of Oklahoma City was honored as a celebrity. What did she do?
a) Won the lottery
b) Won tickets to see the OU-OSU game
c) Was the 500,000th rider of the Heartland Flyer
d) Will be featured in the Centennial Parade
17. What state announced plans to defy the Democratic National Committee and hold its Democratic presidential primary earlier than allowed, even at risk of losing its delegates to next year’s nominating convention?
d) New Hampshire
18. Following an hour-long television interview, Cuban leader Fidel Castro appeared looking healthier in photos with the president of what country?
19. What baseball team secured their third AL West title in four years?
a) Oakland Athletics
b) Texas Rangers
c) Seattle Mariners
d) Los Angeles Angels
20. Crime Stoppers wants more money so tipsters can provide clues via what method?
a) Snail mail
b) RSS feeds
c) Cell phone text message
d) The Bat Phone
How did you do on the quiz? Here are the correct answers:
1-B; 2-A; 3-A; 4-C; 5-D; 6-A; 7-B; 8-C; 9-D; 10-C; 11-D; 12-B; 13-B; 14-C; 15-A; 16-C; 17-B; 18-A; 19-D; 20-C.
Another week has passed. Here is your chance to catch up on what you may have missed.
Space Weather Prediction Center reflects the rapidly-growing importance of solar storm forecast the nation’s well-being, NOAA officials said.
According to a press release, economies around the world have become increasingly vulnerable to the ever-changing nature of our nearest star. Solar-related geomagnetic storms can bring down power grids, interfere with high-frequency airline and military communications, disrupt positioning signals, interrupt civilian communications, and blanket the Earth’s upper atmosphere with hazardous radiation.
“The Space Weather Prediction Center is critical to our economy because each time we use a cell phone, check a GPS locator, or take an over-the-pole flight, space weather could have an impact,” National Weather Service director Jack Hayes said.
In addition to issuing critical warnings and forecasts of solar activity, the prediction center helps move the latest computer models of solar dynamics and sun-Earth interactions into the daily operations of space weather prediction. Scientists and forecasters work closely with government and university partners to develop prediction models and other tools for improving services to the nation’s space weather community.
Monitoring and forecasting solar outbursts in time to mitigate their impact on space-based technologies have become new national priorities. The center is the America’s official source of space weather forecasts, alerts, and warnings, and provides daily reports on conditions on the sun and within Earth’s space environment. Electric power grid operators rely on NOAA space weather products to mitigate grid damage and anticipate possible large-scale blackouts during geomagnetic storms. The U.S. military relies on similar forecasts from the Air Force Weather Agency to know if orbiting satellites have suffered natural effects or human interference.
NOAA, a scientific agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, focuses on the conditions of the oceans and the atmosphere. NOAA warns of dangerous weather, charts seas and skies, guides the use and protection of ocean and coastal resources, and conducts research to improve understanding and stewardship of the environment.
I’m starting to think presidential debates are a waste of time. The moderator asks the candidates random hypothetical questions and the candidates are expected to give detailed answers to those questions at the top of their heads.
This is unrealistic. When someone is president, they never make decisions on their own. When problems arise, a president always speaks with their advisers and cabinet members before making big decisions.
So why should we expect our presidential candidates to come up with a quick answer during a debate? Sometimes finding answers to questions takes longer than two minutes.
Tim Henley, staff writer
Remember when you clicked the buttons on the radio in your old ’65 Mustang and the choices were limited to the AM radio stations you could pull in?
Oh, right. You weren’t around in ’65.
Anyway, FM radio burst on the scene in the early 1970s and within a decade most AM stations had abandoned music in favor of news or talk format because music sounded so much better on FM and in stereo.
Here we are in late 2007 and the world has discovered another format that seems even more promising than FM radio. It is satellite radio, and it brings us uninterrupted radio programming in just about any format we want.
The only drawback is that we have to pay a monthly subscription.
Meanwhile, local radio is fighting back with what it calls “HD” or digital radio that packs more programming into less space on the dial, opening up new programming options.
The only drawback is that digital radios are more expensive than their analog counterparts and not as widely marketed, at least today.
In Oklahoma, there are 23 stations broadcasting 38 HD radio channels with six more coming soon, according to the HD Digital radio coalition Web site www.hdradio.com. Click on this link to see a list of all the Oklahoma stations that broadcast in HD.
And the iBiquity Digital Corp., the developer of digital HD Radio technology, recently said that the 1,500th HD Radio station has gone on the air: Clear Channel’s rock station WROV-FM 96.3 in Roanoke, Va.
Maybe HD radio has finally reached the tipping point.
Business news reporter
Firefighters will remind people about the dangers of house fires and teach about planning and practicing escape routes during a house fire.
According to the prevention association, 3,030 Americans and 92 Oklahomans died in 2005 in house fires. Health officials estimate that only 23 percent of households have implemented and practiced a fire escape plan.
“Many times when we speak to residents who have experienced a fire in their home they recall becoming confused and disoriented by the conditions and severity of the situation. But they realized they needed to get out fast,” said Shelli Stephens-Stidham, Health Department Injury Prevention Service Chief. “Sometimes there are only seconds to escape, but there’s no question that having a plan in place that has been practiced saves precious time and makes survival more likely.”
The Health Department offered eight tips to prepare for a house fire:
— Install working smoke alarms on every level and inside and outside all sleeping areas.
— Develop a fire escape plan that identifies two ways out of each room and a family meeting place outside.
— Make sure the fire escape plan allows for specific needs in the household, including helping infants, young children and disabled people escape.
— Practice a fire escape plan twice a year.
— Remember that some people may not awake to the sound of a smoke alarm and may need help waking up.
— Go to the closest exit if a smoke alarm sounds. Find another route if you encounter smoke. If you must go through smoke, get low and go under the smoke.
— Don’t take your belongings. Move fast, but stay calm.
— Test smoke alarms monthly.
Try your hand at this week’s news quiz, and see how well you have kept caught up with events.
1. Dale Earnhardt Jr. revved up a new phase in his career by:
a) Dropping “Jr.” from his name
b) Changing his number and sponsor
c) Leaving racing
d) Transferring to the IndyCar Series
2. Dan Rather filed a lawsuit against CBS over a discredited story about President Bush’s National Guard service. How much is he seeking from his former employer?
a) $20, since “it’s not about money”
b) $50 million
c) $70 million
d) $100 million
3. The University of Texas celebrated the 50th anniversary of which coaching legend?
a) Darrell Royal
b) Mack Brown
c) Barry Switzer
d) Rick Barnes
4. A storm that made landfall on the Chinese coast south of Shanghai was named:
a) Hurricane Kai-Shek
b) Typhoon Wipha
c) Jet-Stream Li
d) Monsoon Maurice
5. Under state law, once you put your name on this list, it will never expire — but you can still change your listing if you want. What is it?
a) Telemarketer Restriction list, prohibiting phone calls
b) Party Affiliation list, designating which political party you support
c) Organ Donation list, giving permission for transplants
d) Unclaimed Property list, assuring a phone call if your lost fortune is found
6. A study of road congestion in the nation’s urban areas suggests Oklahoma City drivers:
a) Would rather back up on the shoulder if they missed a turn
b) Spend an average of 21 hours a year stuck in rush hour traffic
c) Prefer to chat on cell phones rather than listen to audio books or radio
d) Get stopped by a red light more than three times the national average
7. Because of fears about spreading infection, British doctors have been banned from:
a) Wearing ties
b) Sneezing in operating rooms
c) Speaking to patients’ relatives in crowded emergency rooms
d) Ordering in pizza, and bringing delivery people into the wards
8. An Oklahoma City man named Rudolfo Cruz thought his relatives weren’t going to celebrate his 51st birthday. To cheer himself up, he went out and bought a:
a) New hybrid car
b) Powerball ticket worth $800,000
c) Ticket to the state fair
9. Hygiene researchers staking out public rest rooms found:
a) Women need more stalls
b) One-third of men don’t wash up
c) Federal lawmakers frequent them
d) Nobody should touch anything in there
10. The Muscogee (Creek) Nation is planning to build a Henryetta area museum that will honor what industry in the state?
b) Farming and ranching
c) Smoke shops
d) Coal mining
11. The Federal Reserve’s Open Market Committee cut its target fund rate from 5.25 percent to what amount?
a) 5 percent
b) 4.5 percent
c) 3.49 percent
d) 4.75 percent
12. Who won the Bricktown Showdown, Triple-A baseball’s championship game?
a) Sacramento River Cats
b) Oklahoma RedHawks
c) Richmond Braves
d) Albuquerque Isotopes
13. What does Stephanie Canada, Oklahoma’s Teacher of the Year, teach at Shawnee’s Will Rogers Elementary School?
c) Physical education
14. Which Oklahoman did Billboard magazine pick for its first “Woman of the Year” honor?
a) Reba McEntire
b) Patti Page
c) Lauren Nelson
d) Carrie Underwood
15. In its first month of business, a unique Arcadia establishment has sold more than 45,000 rare specialty sodas not ordinarily found in Oklahoma. What’s the name of the business?
16. A group of Tulsa entrepreneurs is planning to launch a business that will auction everything from homes to Hollywood memorabilia. What type of business is it?
a) Department store
b) Shopping mall
c) Web site
d) TV network
17. In reaction to Russia’s aggressive attempts to claim much of the Arctic Ocean bottom as Russian national territory, all but which of these countermeasures has been taken:
a) Canada says it will increase its icebreaker fleet and build two Arctic military facilities
b) Denmark has sent a team of scientists to Greenland
c) A U.S. Coast Guard icebreaker has set off for a research expedition
d) An Icelandic naval icebreaker has been sent to the North Pole area
18. A Russian Supreme Court justice was in Oklahoma to gain better knowledge of the U.S. court system because:
a) He wanted to study U.S. jury trials
b) He wanted to study U.S. criminal trials
c) He wanted to know Americans better
d) He wanted to study plea bargaining
19. “The Sopranos” became only the second television drama to win an Emmy for best series once its run was over. What was the first?
a) “Hill Street Blues”
b) “The West Wing”
c) “Upstairs, Downstairs”
d) “L.A. Law”
20. China recalled a tainted batch of drugs that treats what ailment?
a) Alzheimer’s disease
How did you do on the quiz? Here are the correct answers:
1-B; 2-C; 3-A; 4-B; 5-A; 6-B; 7-A; 8-B; 9-B; 10-D; 11-D; 12-A; 13-C; 14-A; 15-C; 16-D; 17-D; 18-C; 19-C; 20-D
Another week has passed, and here is your chance to catch up on what you might have missed.
- “The Sopranos” won its second Emmy for best drama for its final season, only the second time a drama won once its run was finished.
- Defense Secretary Robert Gates said that if a proposal by Virginia Sen. Jim Webb were enacted requiring troops to spend as much time at home as they do on tours in
Iraq, it would force the Pentagon to extend military tours again.
- Former Oklahoma State University basketball star Byron Houston, 37, was ordered to spend four years in prison for indecent exposure. He was on probation when a female driver reported seeing him without pants and masturbating in a car in Oklahoma City.
- The Muckleshoot Indian Tribe unveiled a plan to build the Seattle SuperSonics a new arena next to a horse racing track in Auburn, Wash. The study said the stadium would cost $452 million, but financing was not discussed.
- In the face of rising fuel bills, more Oklahomans are buying hybrid cars. The state saw a 143 percent increase in hybrid sales from January to July compared with 2006.
- Sept. 17 brought the 100-year anniversary of the date Oklahomans gathered in Guthrie to approve the state’s proposed constitution, which was sent to the president so the territories could become a state.
- A passenger jet crashed on the Thai island of Phuket, killing close to 200 people, including scores of foreign tourists.
- Greece’s conservative Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis won re-election, though with a diminished majority in parliament.
- An outage left about 18,000 north Oklahoma City, Piedmont and Edmond customers without power.
- The “hand-washing police” may have your bathroom staked out. According to a study that was reported to infectious disease scientists, one-third of men and 12 percent of women didn’t wash their hands after using the restroom — hygiene statistics that have grown worse for both genders since the last survey was done two years ago.
- Country music star/actress Reba McEntire, 53, was named to Billboard magazine’s first “Woman of the Year” award. A native Oklahoman, McEntire’s new album of duets — with such artists as Justin Timberlake, Don Henley, Kelly Clarkson, Kenny Chesney, Carole King and Faith Hill — came out the past week.
- Stephanie Canada, who teaches physical education at Will Rogers Elementary School in Shawnee, was named state Teacher of the Year during ceremonies at the Oklahoma State Fair Centennial Expo.
- St. Anthony Hospital has a four-person concierge staff offering many of the amenities to hospital patients and staff that can be found at hotels.
- Few suicide-prevention programs target the elderly — despite their being the highest-risk population in the country for suicide — because of lack of funding and lack of concern, advocates say.
- Formal charges filed against O.J. Simpson allege his participation in 10 felonies, including kidnapping, in the robbery of sports memorabilia collectors in
- Syria and North Korea denied U.S. claims that they are cooperating on a Syrian nuclear program.
- Attorney Robert Behlen was arrested, accused of holding a pharmacist and his assistant at gunpoint and taking painkillers from an Edmond pharmacy.
- Oklahoma City drivers spend an average of 21 hours per year stuck in rush hour traffic, ranking 56th in a study of 85 U.S. by the Texas Transportation Institute.
- A throng of about 500 people mobbed a book store in New York giving the rock-star treatment to former Federal Reserve Chief Alan Greenspan, whose recently released memoir “The Age of Turbulence” is selling well.
- The Sacramento River Cats beat the Richmond Braves 7-1 at AT&T Bricktown Ballpark to win the Bricktown Showdown, the Triple-A championship game.
- It was farewell to the C-130s as the last three of the Oklahoma Air National Guard’s cargo airplanes left Oklahoma City’s Will Rogers Air National Guard Base for a new mission in Pennsylvania. The local Air Guard unit will begin flying KC-135 refueling aircraft. One Guard airman said of the C-130s, “We’ve nearly flown the wings off them.”
- Hundreds of people gathered on the south plaza of the state Capitol to protest the treatment of six black students in Jena, La. The six were accused of attacking another student after nooses appeared in a school tree. One of the black students has been jailed for about a year and is awaiting an appearance in court. A similar rally was held in Jena.
- The Chickasaw Nation’s WinStar casino in southern Oklahoma has begun construction to transform itself into a destination casino with a 400-room hotel, a convention center and a doubling of gaming space.
- Sen. Jim Inhofe said Thursday that lawmakers need to look at all of the nation’s transportation needs and not just at devoting more resources to bridge repair. Three weeks after the Air Force began investigating the mistaken arming of a B-52 bomber with nuclear weapons, Defense Secretary Robert Gates has asked for an outside inquiry.
For all of you who obsessively spray alcohol and water at the gym or clean your hands with sanitizers, Canadian researchers have found what medical professionals already knew — old-fashioned soap and water works better than anything to clean your hands.
Hospital-acquired infections — called nosocomial infections — are a huge problem worldwide. One of the most difficult bugs to combat is Clostridium difficile. Michael Libman, director of the Division of Infectious Diseases at the McGill University Health Centre in Montreal studied the most effective ways to eliminate C. difficile from the hands of health care workers.
Researchers tested five hand-washing protocols that emulated hospital conditions as closely as possible, according to a McGill press release. After the hands of 10 volunteers were contaminated with the bacterium, they washed with regular soap and warm or cold water, antiseptic soap and warm water, an alcohol-based solution and a disinfectant towel.
“The results were striking: the protocols that involved washing with water eliminated more than 98 percent of the bacteria, while washing with an alcohol-based solution eliminated almost none! The protocol involving a disinfectant towel eliminated around 95 percent of bacteria,” according to the release.
Part of the challenge in controlling the bacterium is eliminating the resistant spores it produces. Alcohol eliminates “living” bacteria but not spores, the researchers postulated. The chemical action of soap and mechanical action of hand washing eliminates both. Alcohol rubs remain effective in killing bacteria but not spores.
And, by the way, soap is all antibacterial. So unless you get your soap from a hospital supply closet, washing your hands is more mechanical than chemical. And don’t rush it!
Jeff Raymond, Medical Writer
Space constraints in today’ edition of The Oklahoman prevented the inclusion of information that I wanted readers to know about the For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) competition. It was announced Wednesday that Oklahoma City was selected as a regional site leading to April’s national competition in Atlanta.
More than 40 teams comprised of 15 to 25 high school students are expected to compete during the three-day event March 20-22 at the Cox Convention Center.
Click to read today’s story.
Click to watch a video of robots constructed by students from Ponca City High School and Moore Norman Technology Center.
Here’s what was in my notebook, but didn’t make the newspaper:
The Legislature in May appropriated $100,000 for high schools to establish robotics projects. The state Education Department will award 20 grants of $5,000 for schools to implement remote-controlled robot projects that could be entered into regional and national competitions.
Applicants must demonstrate commitment to the development of student teams, recruitment of volunteer mentors, designing and building remote-controlled robots and entering competitions. Eligibility is limited to schools that haven’t participated in robotics competitions.
The application deadline is Oct. 17.
Click for more information and to download an application.
Three questions and answers about FIRST
Q: What is FIRST?
A: Dean Kamen founded in 1989 For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) to inspire young people’s interest and participation in science and technology. It designs accessible, innovative programs to motivate young people to pursue opportunities in science and technology, engineering and math while building self-confidence, knowledge and life skills.
Q: What is the FIRST robotics competition?
A: The annual event challenges high school students to design and build a robot. They compete in high-intensity events that measure the effectiveness of robots, the power of team strategy and collaboration and the determination of students.
Q: How do competitions work?
A: Short games are played by remote-controlled robots. Referees oversee the competition and judges present awards to teams for design, technology, sportsmanship and commitment to FIRST.