The Two-Way
10:02 am
Mon February 20, 2012

Holiday News Roundup: Mardi Gras, Greece And John Glenn

An image captured on Feb. 20, 1962, by NASA shows astronaut John Glenn during his space flight in the Friendship 7 Mercury spacecraft, weightless and traveling at 17,500 mph. The image was made by an automatic sequence motion picture camera.
NASA AP

Originally published on Mon February 20, 2012 9:18 am

The Two-Way is formally off-duty for the Presidents' Day holiday. But not only does the news not take a holiday — often, holidays are the news. Here's a quick roundup of some of today's important and most-discussed stories:

  • Syria is reinforcing its military in what seems to be a bid to control Homs. (AP)
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Artscape
9:45 am
Mon February 20, 2012

Artscape: Revisiting the Oscars via the 20/20 awards

A scene from the Goodfellas, considered to be the second best Gangster movie ever made.

The Academy Awards are coming up this Sunday. There are many wonderful films that don’t get an Oscar. And there are lots of not-so-great movies that win the coveted award.  Seattle’s “20-20” awards look back at past Oscar winners and how they’ve stood the test of time.

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Boeing 787
6:00 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

President Obama takes Boeing tour in Everett

After touring the Boeing 787 plant in Everett, President Obama walked down the steps of a new plane to greet the crowd of workers, community members, and a sea of media.
Paula Wissel

Speaking in Everett in the massive building where Boeing 787's are assembled,  President Barack Obama praised the aerospace company for succeeding at keeping jobs in the United States.

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NW Craft Brews
3:11 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

The Friday Beer: 10 Barrel Brewing Company's ISA

10 Barrel Brewing Company's ISA.
Paul Gibson

Road trip! Nothing beats a road trip to get you out of a routine. Road trips present an opportunity to try new breweries, explore new pubs and meet new people. A recent trip to Bend, Ore provided just the change of scenery I needed. Out of lowland Seattle up into the high desert of Central Oregon. While in Bend I had the opportunity to visit Deschutes, Boneyard and 10 Barrel. Great beers and great people all around.

Pictured here is the 10 Barrel ISA. It's their India Session Ale. A bit lower on the alcohol and very drinkable with great citrusy aroma.

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Education
2:37 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

State superintendent gives his proposal for school funding

Stephanie McCleary stands in a multi-age classroom in Chimacum School District. She sued the state of Washington for not fully paying for the education of its public school students.
Donna Gordon Blankinship Associated Press

The good news in this week's new Washington state revenue forecast has drawn the attention of everyone who wants some money for their department or program.

But in a statement put out by Superintendent of Public Instruction Randy Dorn, Dorn says the state Constitution and the Supreme Court give Washington only one choice: pay for education first.

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Music
1:11 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

Why do people hate rap and opera?

Opera and rap seem to hit a nerve with many music lovers.
Morozova Tatiana iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed February 22, 2012 8:47 am

So what's wrong with rap and opera? Not much, really. Except that last week when we asked readers to name their musical blind spots (genres or bands they ignored, either by choice or neglect) a distinct refrain emerged within the responses. Two examples:

"Oh, and by the way, rap is not music. It is mostly a bunch of meaningless drivel by people with no real talent and who certainly should not get paid."

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Tom Huizenga is a music producer, reporter and blogger for NPR Music. He hosts NPR's classical music blog Deceptive Cadence.

A regular contributor of stories about classical music on NPR's news programs, Huizenga regularly introduces intriguing new classical CDs to listeners on the weekend version of All Things Considered. He contributes to NPR Music's "Song of the Day."

520 Bridge Tolling
11:01 am
Fri February 17, 2012

Traffic slowly returning to 520 toll bridge

The 520 floating bridge, including the western high rise, where the bridge passes near the Madison Park neighborhood of Seattle as it heads over Lake Washington.
Associated Press

The Washington Transportation Department says drivers are gradually returning to the Highway 520 floating bridge since tolling was imposed in late December.

Tolling spokeswoman Patty Michaud said Friday the bridge that handled about 100,000 vehicles a day now typically handles 60,000 to 65,000. Traffic had dropped by nearly half when tolling went into effect.

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Science
10:34 am
Fri February 17, 2012

When the car is the driver

Chris Urmson (right) and Anthony Levandowski, one of the leaders of Google's self-driving car project, get into the driverless car.
Steve Henn NPR

Originally published on Fri February 17, 2012 12:06 am

This week the state of Nevada finalized new rules that will make it possible for robotic self-driving cars to receive their own special driving permits. It's not quite driver's licenses for robots — but it's close.

The other day I went for a spin in a robotic car. This car has an $80,000 cone-shaped laser mounted on its roof. There are radars on the front, back and sides. Detailed maps help it navigate.

Do people notice it's a self-driving car and gawk?

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Weather with Cliff Mass
9:38 am
Fri February 17, 2012

Soggy start to weekend, but some nice skiing ahead

Not for wimps: Now, that's what a real storm front looks like ... on the plains of Nebraska.
Michael Cornelius flickr

It's too wimpy to call it a storm, but wind and rain will dominate through tonight and tomorrow, says KPLU weather expert Cliff Mass.

The winds will be hard to miss along the Washington coast, getting up to 60 mph. But, as Mass explains, the coastal mountains tend to cut down those winds by the time they reach Puget Sound, leaving us with merely blustery conditions.

By Sunday, it should dry out, and skiers will find a lot of fresh snow waiting for them in the mountains. Next week appears to offer more mild temperatures with occasional rain showers.

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