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NEWSROOM for September 7, 2001

Aired September 7, 2001 - 04:30   ET


ANNOUNCER: Seen in classrooms the world over, this is CNN NEWSROOM.

SHELLEY WALCOTT, CO-HOST: Friday, September 7, find NEWSROOM jam packed. Our show begins with a tour of the International Space Station. Then, meet the guys who built these in our "Daily Desk." Globetrotters get ready, it's time to check in on "Worldview." And in the end, we wrap things up with a light show bonanza.

Hello, and welcome to CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Shelley Walcott.

Get ready for an out-of-this-world look at what it's like to live in space. The crew of the International Space Station gave CNN an exclusive tour Thursday of the place they call home. The space station is an international venture designed to boost scientific research and technological development. It enables scientists to study in a nearly gravity-free environment.

Alpha Commander Frank Culbertson led CNN's Miles O'Brien on the tour. Here it is.


MILES O'BRIEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This is -- we're entering the place they call the node. That's an important connecting point.

CMDR. FRANK CULBERTSON, SPACE STATION ALPHA: This is entering the node Unity, which was the first American element to be lost by the space station. It was attached to the FUB functional cargo block, Zarya, which is in the background that you see.

But, before we go in there, we're going to take a quick look into the joint airlock, which was delivered by flight 7A in May, I believe it was. This flight -- sorry, it was in July. This flight contains spacesuits, both American and Russian, as well as a lot of hardware that could be installed on the outside if the need arises. Some of it will be, as payloads.

In the corner of the lab, we have other computers, laptop computer and then a communications computer that we can use for communicating with the ground. And of course you see our speed up there on the hatch. We are traveling about 28,000 kilometers per hour. And we are able to keep track of where we are over the earth with a special program called "World Map."

At this particular time, we are just south of Australia, and just about the end of the Pacific Ocean, and it's dark outside.

O'BRIEN: Speed limit of 17,500 miles an hour...

CULBERTSON: Kind of like the "Blues Brothers" did it.

O'BRIEN: Yes, you're moving along.

CULBERTSON: To the right there is the water that we have stowed in bags. We have over two tons of water that we use for various purposes; of course drinking, and cleaning and preparing food, and also for producing the oxygen that we breathe onboard. It's run through an electrolysis process in the service module, in a machine called Electron.

There's also a good array of tools. They would look great in anybody's garage, both metric and the U.S. Unfortunately, we're not all metric up here. But we have great tools that we can do a lot of good things with up here to keep the station running.

We're now entering the pressurized mating adaptor, which takes us into the Russian segment. You can see the ventilation tubes that go through there. As you can see, up or down doesn't really matter as you travel through the various parts of the station.

Above the camera as we travel through this part of the FUB, is the Soyuz spacecraft. Didn't get a good picture of that, but it's the one that stays docked all the time, always open, always operational in case we have to return to Earth in an emergency. It will be changed out in October with the visiting crew that comes up to bring us a new Soyuz.

We're now in the Zarya, the functional cargo box, the first element of the space station that was launched almost three years ago in November.

This is a lot of the food that we just received. As you can see, there's still a lot of things out in the aisles, because we don't have places for everything yet. But this is the Russian provided food. We have 50 percent Russian, 50 percent American in boxes that come up in the wide variety of types of food and drinks.

Now we are leaving the FUB, and entering the node that attaches the FUB to the service module. Again, you can see the ventilation tubes that go through there. So, we have a complete exchange of air throughout the station on a very frequent basis. Air flows from one end to the other through those tubes, and then back through the hatches.

You can see Mikhail exercising on the treadmill. I'll show you more about that in a minute. We're now going through what is called the Central Command Post of the service module. That's one of the several windows in the service module. This is the command post. We have both an American laptop and a Russian laptop there, monitoring the systems onboard. Of course we have a warning panel. A clock that is synced up with Mission Control. And from here we can tell what's going on anywhere in the station. That's the Russian laptop on the left, and the American on the right.

We have communication panels in this area, as well as backup control systems for turning systems on and off, and also for operating remote -- remotely operated spacecrafts, such as Progress, if we need to manually dock them. We have a wide array of cameras that we keep ready all the time in all the modules, either for Earth observation or for interior shops.

Here's our pilot Vladimir Dezhurov, just finished taking some shots with the video, and I'm trying to get him to turn around to say hi to the camera, which he'll do in just a minute.

Good morning, Vladimir.

Vladimir, of course, was the commander of Mir 18, the first joint mission between the shuttle and the Mir Station, and was the one who shook Hoot Gibson's hand when that historic docking took place.

On the treadmill, behind our table, is Mikhail Tyurin, our flight engineer. This is Mikhail's first flight into space, but he adapted in about 5 minutes and is like a veteran up here.

This area is basically our kitchen, our dining room, our gymnasium, our bedroom and our bathroom all in one small area. You can see Mikhail exercising very vigorously on the treadmill. Here's a little bit of what's left over from breakfast. And behind that -- to the left of that is a water dispenser, hot or cold water. And behind that is Mikhail's Kayuta (ph), or state room. And on the other side is my Kayuta


WALCOTT: Also on Thursday, people along the eastern U.S. coast saw lights streak across the sky. Experts first thought it was a meteor, but then a spokesman for the U.S. Space Command says it was actually a 26-year-old Russian rocket burning up on reentry.

Other news of the day now, Mexican President Vicente Fox continues to push for an overhaul in U.S. immigration policy. He and U.S. President Bush discussed the matter Thursday on Capitol Hill. Later, the two presidents took their summit on the road to Toledo, Ohio. They spoke at a university gym stressing the importance of strong relations between the neighboring countries.


GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We've been discussing common opportunities and common problems for months, and as a result, our relationship has never been better and never been stronger.

VICENTE FOX, PRESIDENT OF MEXICO: Today we're not only neighbors, we're not only friends, we are partners to the commitment we signed with NAFTA. We are partners to work together building a better future for both of our nations.


WALCOTT: Also "In Our Headlines," the U.S. Justice Department says it will no longer seek to split software giant Microsoft. Many analysts say they aren't surprised by Thursday's decision.

Tim O'Brien has details from Washington.


TIM O'BRIEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Some of the Bush Administration leading critics say the Justice Department decision made sense.

SEN. CHARLES SCHUMER (D), NEW YORK: To try to come to a quick settlement either before Windows XP comes out or before it gains such wide predominance that it is the platform indeed makes a great deal of sense to me as long as the settlement has some real teeth.

O'BRIEN: One antitrust expert was reading "settlement" through the lines.

DAN WALL, LATHAM & WATKINS: I think it is probably the right decision because I think there is more to this story than we know. I think that there's probably already been substantial preliminary negotiations with Microsoft on a settlement.

O'BRIEN: But senior Justice Department officials insist the decision to narrow the case had nothing to do with any settlement talks. That it was motivated instead by the desire to move the case along to a quick resolution.

JONATHAN ZUCK, ASSOCIATION FOR COMPETITIVE TECH. PRO-MICROSOFT TRADE GROUP: I think a best-case scenario is a set of very specific and targeted conduct restrictions that address the remaining concerns of the court of appeals and require a minimal judicial oversight moving forward.

O'BRIEN: The government will now focus its efforts on the remedies for what two federal courts found to be a pattern of antitrust violations, exclusionary contracts and other anti competitive practices.

Some of Microsoft's competitors said they accepted the government's decision as long as it did not signal a retreat on the case.

MIKE PETIT, PROCOMP, ANTI-MICROSOFT TRADE GROUP: As we move into the world of Windows XP, Microsoft continues to regulate this market and that has to be -- that fundamental market power -- has to be taken away from Microsoft.

O'BRIEN: In a written statement Microsoft said, "We really look forward to moving forward to a fair and expeditious resolution of the case." (on camera): Some top Democrats were quick to criticize the Justice Department for taking critical litigation options off of the table, and suggesting President Bush and other White House officials may have exerted improper influence. Senior officials in the antitrust division say the White House was told of the decision, but played absolutely no part in reaching it.

Tim O'Brien, CNN financial news, Washington.



ANNOUNCER: Coming your way this season on CNN NEWSROOM, we'll explore people, places and things. We'll meet people prominent in the present.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Spanish is here to stay. But it, again, that does not mean it'll impede the children and grandchildren of Spanish speaking immigrants from learning English.

ANNOUNCER: And study interesting people of the past while pondering your plans for the future. We'll visit places far away from home and find fascinating cultures in our own backyard. We'll discover things in the world around us, things seen...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The ocean is like a soup. It's just filled with creatures from the top all the way to the greatest depths seven miles down. And I just love it all.

ANNOUNCER: ... and sometimes unseen. So join us, starting this fall as we travel from our newsroom to your classroom out into the world beyond. It's all right here on CNN NEWSROOM.


WALCOTT: OK, gang, today's "Editor's Desk" features something you're probably familiar with but may not know it. It is animatronics. The definition: of, relating to, or being a puppet or similar figure that is animated by means of electromechanical devices. Sound familiar yet? Well, if you've seen any of the "Jurassic Park" movies you've witnessed animatronics in action.

If not, here's Sherri Sylvester with the animatron lowdown on "Jurassic Park III."


SHERRI SYLVESTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): How to build a better dinosaur. That question was asked and eventually answered by the makers of "Jurassic Park III." Here's how they did it.

STAN WINSTON, DINOSAUR MAKER: We've hot-rodded our dinosaurs in the live action aspect. We made them more powerful. We made them faster. We were able to put more mechanics, more motors within the bodies to make all of the points of motion that much more subtle and organic.

SYLVESTER: Stan Winston and his animatronics experts created the spinosaurus. This super-charged dino dwarfs the nine-ton, 300 horsepower T-rex.

WILLIAM H. MACY, ACTOR: This guy's run with 1,000 horsepower worth of motors -- 1,000 horsepower. Your car probably has 200 horses. He can turn his head at 2 G forces. His nose is going over 100 miles an hour.

SYLVESTER (on camera): So they can really hurt you.

MACY: Oh, tell me about it. That's a bulldozer with a rubber suit over it.

SYLVESTER (voice-over): Spino leads the first attack against the cast in their downed plane.

TEA LEONI, ACTRESS: With facial muscles far beyond a couple of screws here, and you don't look into the mouth and see a big tube with fire or something. It's all very seamless.

SAM NEILL: They breathe and there's this scary sort of pulse in their necks.

SYLVESTER: The film is half animatronic and half computer- generated imagery. The folks at Industrial Light and Magic created dinosaurs that could chase their human prey. They not only made realistic muscle mass, but added an elasticity to the skin so it would move over the muscles.

JOE JOHNSTON, DIRECTOR: You really feel the dinosaur's weight and you feel it impact the ground, and you know when they slam together you feel one go flying off.

SYLVESTER: Director Joe Johnston says a computer-generated dino battle cost $140,000 per shot. Many scenes feature a Winston puppet next to a CGI creature. One way to tell: If they're running, they're probably computer-generated. If they're acting in close-ups, they may be puppets.

TREVOR MORGAN, ACTOR: These little guys, their tongues move. You see that tongue right there? That's a long tongue and sometimes they would be fooling around and they would actually lick me. It's kind of gross, but...

SYLVESTER: Oh and those screams you hear from the actors -- they are real.

Sherri Sylvester, CNN, Los Angeles.


WALCOTT: Have you ever stayed in a hotel or a motel while on vacation? Well, for most people it's a shelter away from home when they're on the road, but for some other folks it's an experience in itself. In "Worldview" today, we take you to two unique hotels -- one in Germany has all the creature comforts you could want, the other in China makes a science of hospitality.

TOM HAYNES, CO-HOST: A little more than four years ago, Britain gave up control of Hong Kong and the island reverted to Chinese control. The British leased Hong Kong from China in 1898 for a period of 99 years. Hong Kong has about 422 miles of land area but Hong Kong Island and its islets take up only about 35 square miles. Hong Kong has one of the biggest and busiest economies in Asia. It's a major trade route and financial hub.

Hong Kong draws people from around the world. Tourists come to indulge in shopping and to learn about Hong Kong's history and culture, among other things. Others come to conduct business. Whatever the reason, if you visit Hong Kong, you'll find no shortage of places to stay.

Lisa Barron takes us to one of the premier hotels in the Asian region.


LISA BARRON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The grand dame of Hong Hotels has been serving up first-class luxury since 1928: fine dining, a fully equipped spa, panoramic views from the sundeck, a Roman-style pool, and any of the Peninsula's creature comforts you desire delivered to your door.


BARRON: Room service, indeed. It may be Old World hospitality, but the 300 guest rooms and suites, ranging from $300-plus to more than $3,000 a night, are equipped with the latest in modern technology.

FRASER HICKOX, THE PENINSULA GROUP: I think that it's a whole lot of elements that distinguish the Peninsula. The electronics area is one area. It's the delivery of service transparently to the guest. In this hotel, we have done it by providing controls for facilities where they are most needed, but don't have to be thought about.

BARRON: Like this telephone, designed and made by a team of technicians in the Peninsula's own lab.

(on camera): What is one of the most unusual features about this phone?

HICKOX: When the guest checks in, we capture their home details and automatically program the phone to read out their home time, so they don't have to think. It will tell them that it's a public holiday, a.m. p.m., and in some locations, they will even tell you the weather in that place.

BARRON (voice-over): But the real highlight of the Peninsula had experience... HICKOX: Our bathrooms are very popular amongst our traveling guests. We have the ability for them to set the room lights to a condition that might be appropriate for their needs. And they have the ability to operate a radio or a television from the bathtub.

If while the guest is in the bath, they have an incoming call, they have the ability to pick it up by simply pressing the button.

BARRON: It's not the only thing in the room that seems to work by magic.

HICKOX: Down here, we have our shoe box, and here the guest can place a pair of shows, press the button, and it will automatically page the floor attendant who can access them from the other side, remove them, clean them, and put them back in without disturbing our guest.

BARRON: There's no reason, in fact, ever to get out of bed.

HICKOX: Here we have the ability for the guest to control the curtains; do not disturb; to call a valet, should they need some assistance or they would like some help. There's an alarm clock; air- conditioning; the television facilities; a radio; a master light; and a night light, which provides a lit path to the bathroom in the middle of the night.

BARRON: So what's next in this so-called six-star service?

HICKOX: We do some fairly scary things. In time, we are looking at some sort of bio-feedback system where we can adjust the temperature while they are sleeping, so that they have the best night's sleep. We are measuring the response curve from the person, and we know when to adjust certain factors, to improve their rest.

BARRON (on camera): But at the end of the day, nothing beats a good old-fashioned bubble bath and easing the stresses of the 21st century world.

Lisa Barron, CNN, Hong Kong.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We turn from a hotel in Asia to a hotel in Europe. This time our travels take us to Germany, a country that is a worldwide economic and industrial power. Today we look at its pension for pets. Did you know that the German Shepherd dog was a breed developed in Germany in the early 1900s? Originally it was a herder, but today, German Shepherds are used around the world as guide dogs and police dogs. These days, dogs of all kinds are finding a welcome at a hotel in Berlin.

Bettina Luscher has the tale.


BETTINA LUSCHER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For Germans, it may be a matter of guilt, what to do with their puppy when they go on vacation and don't want the poach to hit the beach with them. The answer? Drop off their pet at the Pfotchenhotel, the Little Paw Hotel.

"I have visited a lot of kennels," says the proud owner of this establishment, "and I thought we would have to structure this place more like a hotel. The animals must be entertained, and that's what we're doing here."

Oh, boy! Forget structure. Think Club Med with a fur. No divers, but what a place to go diving. Even trainers to run with dogs through an obstacle course. So much fun that any dog might even forgive their owner for dropping them off at the paw hotel.

Owners can even check on the Internet how their pet is doing.

"Our clients are people from all social levels," says the class- conscious hotel owner, "it's not just VIPs who bring their pets here. Those who love their animal are not afraid of the cost."

So how much to park your pet in this posh place? Between $20 and $44 per day, depending on whether you can stand the smell of a roommate or require a room of your own. And rooms they are. Forget cages or, dog heaven forbid, horrible things like being put behind bars. No, no, this is pet paradise.

For their owners, a guilt-free holiday of a lifetime.

Bettina Luscher, CNN, Berlin.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: As the world's largest country and one whose population dates back to 1200 BC, Russia is brimming with traditions. Russian culture brings to mind ballet troops, literature and especially classical music. You probably heard names like Rimsky- Korsakov, Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov, musicians globally recognized for their contribution to Russian arts. These composers base much of their work on Russian history and folklore and now some poets are following in their steps.

Jill Dougherty has more on a gathering that's in tune with Soviet tradition.


JILL DOUGHERTY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): They come from all over Russia. This year an estimated 300,000 men, women and children to the annual Bard Festival on the Volga River near the city of Samara. That's Bard as in poetic singers and songwriters, an old Russian tradition that even Soviet persecution couldn't stamp out.

BORIS VESUVTSEV, BARD ENTHUSIAST (through translator): We used to gather together in hidden places like around our kitchen tables to share our emotions. That's the kind of spirit of unity that brings us together here. DOUGHERTY: The kitchen here is a campfire. Cooking out and pitching a tent are part of the experience. And the singing, it's everywhere, professionals and the amateurs. The poetry often more important than the melody.


DOUGHERTY: "Autumn rushes to winter as women rush to don their fur coat," she sings. "I want to close my eyes, not rush anywhere, turn my whole life into this brief moment."

The song's meaning most people here say can't be translated, only Russians really understand. But others drawn by love of music and the Russian language have tried, like this Canadian-Russian-Norwegian trio.

JESSE, TRIO MEMBER: I've been to other music festivals and they're nothing like this. Just has a very calm spirit here.

DOUGHERTY: Perhaps it's the Russian soul, the ruskiadusha (ph) that draws people back to this festival year after year. A current of positive energy that runs like the Volga River through the heart of Russia.

Jill Dougherty, CNN, Moscow.


WALCOTT: Well, if art is I and science is we then what is art that uses science? Not sure? Well, neither are some New York museum goers. They aren't quite sure what to make of a new exhibit so here's Jeanne Moos to shed some light.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Hold on to your partner, this exhibit may leave you lightheaded.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's weird. You know it's like going into a wonderland.

MOOS: Instead of looking through a kaleidoscope, it's like being in one.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is just not really explainable.

MOOS: This is the kind of art that leaves your head spinning. After all, there are 6,000 mirrored cubes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Every cube in this entire gallery has its own motor.

MOOS: Cubes, lasers, computer programmed, intelligent lights inhabit a series of huge rooms lined with reflective mylar panels. This art installation is named after a constellation and folks visiting Ace Gallery are finding it all a little alien. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I just can't imagine a mind that would create this.

MOOS: It was Los Angeles based artist Hiro Yamagata who said, let there be light.

(on camera): What kind of cycle is it on?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's on seven minutes. It's stunning. It really is. It's like being inside a disco ball.

MOOS: It's like a discotheque gone mad.

(voice-over): Hiro hates disco references. He says his lighting reflects the colors inherent in the sun's rays if only the human eye were able perceive them.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It reminds me of "Space Odyssey: 2001."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Strange before you get used to it, but the lights are kind of a strain on your eyes, like that one for instance.

MOOS: So strange there's a warning, intense lighting can trigger seizures in folks with certain conditions.

HIRO YAMAGATA, ARTIST: Two times people had a seizure here. But I'm not doing for that.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We had one incident and basically we stopped the show and she was OK.

MOOS: Some were taking no chances.

(on camera): You've got sunglasses on.


MOOS (voice-over): The most disorienting room is the strobe room.


MOOS: Too bad our camera can't capture the spooky effect. The strobe goes off every few seconds and in the pitch black in between...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The image of people in the room remained on your retina and then faded.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How do we get out of here?

MOOS: Folks were walking into walls. The lighting made some folks queezy.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The big room is the most nauseating of all, if you haven't been in there. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But I think it is fascinating.

MOOS (on camera): Like, nauseating good, or nauseating...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can nauseating be good? It's unforgettable.

Jeanne moos, CNN, New York.


WALCOTT: And that wraps up today's show. Have a great weekend. We'll see you Monday.


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