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Latest from Steve Berg

    Could Chinese-made smart phones be spying for the Chinese government? TechCrunch reports that's the fear of U.S. intelligence officials, who testified at a Senate hearing this week that they still have surveillance concerns about phones made by the Chinese companies, Huawei and ZTE, which they say have close ties to the Chinese government. So far, the two companies have had trouble making inroads with U.S. carrier vendors like AT&T, but they're making a big sales push with non-carrier vendors like Best Buy. And they insist their phones pose no cybersecurity threat, saying they're trusted and sold in 170 countries worldwide. You can read more about the story here.
  • It had a human driver behind the wheel, but the semi was doing most of the driving on its own! Engadget reports the company Embark just successfully sent one of its self-driving semis from Los Angeles to Jacksonville, Florida, with almost no help from the human driver who was there to keep an eye on things. They say the truck drove on its own for hours at a time and that human control was only needed for seconds at a time. Right now the company says they will use the automated system in conjuction with human drivers to make long-haul routes a little less grueling. They plan to have 40 self-driving trucks in their fleet by the end of the year. You can read more about the story here.
  • You can measure by education, income, or health. But no matter how you slice it, one site says Oklahoma is a bad state for old people. 24/7 Wall Street says fewer seniors in Oklahoma have a bachelor's degrees than the national average. Also, Oklahoma seniors have the 8th lowest average income and the 5th lowest life-expectancy. They say once the numbers are crunched, Oklahoma is the 9th worst state to grow old in. Putting more salt in the wound, they say Oklahoma has the 3rd highest rate of seniors who have a disability. Mississippi, West Virginia, and Alaska were ranked as the first, second, and third worst. The three best states for senior are New Hampshire, Vermont, and Minnesota. You can see more about the list here.
  • A Michigan man knew his German Shepherd was clever, but he was still surprised by what he found in the mail. Saugatuck, Michigan attorney Michael Haddock tells Channel 13 in Grand Rapids it was a letter, approving unemployment benefits of $360 per week for a Michael Ryder. Ryder is the name of his dog. State officials say there will be no loot for Ryder though. It’s not clear what happened, but they say the supposed employer listed on the letter is in Detroit, on the opposite side of the state from Saugatuck. You can read more about the story here.
  • Oklahoma is the most polite state in the U.S., according to a Canadian accounting software firm. And while an accounting firm might seem like an odd choice to be calculating such stuff, their methodology doesn't seem bad. The website Inc. says the company, Freshbooks, analyzed some 250,000 invoices of its clients. Invoices of course involve the sometimes unpleasant task of asking people to pay their bills. And they looked to see how many times the clients used language like “please” and “thank you.” And the Oklahoma folks ranked number one by a huge margin, almost twice as often as the number two state, Alabama. You can read more about the story here.
  • No, we don't know why, but Engadget reports a company owned by Elon Musk is selling a FLAMETHROWER. The Boring Company (as in digging subway tunnels, not dull) will be the brand name of the personal flamethrower, that can be yours for the low, low price of $500. Apparently, anything that shoots fire less than 10-feet is legal, in case you're wondering. They plan to sell 20,000 of them. Meantime, the Boring Company continues digging its first test tunnel in Los Angeles, with the ultimate goal of having electric skates that will carry cars and 'people pods' below ground to bypass the traffic above. You can read more about the flamethrower here.
  • Researchers at Georgia State University think they may be very close to creating a 'universal' flu vaccine. Yahoo says the vaccine could be a game-changer and that during testing on mice, it proved to be effective against all the major Influenza-A viruses, the most severe kind. Right now, health officials make their best guess on what strains will be predominant in any given year, and base the flu shot on that. But if this new vaccine pans out, they might not have to guess anymore. And the future flu shot could be as much as 95-percent effective. Right now, it’s roughly 30-percent effective in most years. You can read more about the flu vaccine story here.
  • The best school district in Oklahoma is right here in Tulsa County. So says a company called Niche, according to the story by Business Insider. Niche researches and compiles information on all the nearly 100,000 grade school, middle school, and high schools in the U.S. And they say the Jenks district is the best in the state.  They look at four main categories, Academics, Health & Safety, Diversity, and Teachers. And Jenks got an A+ on the first two, and and A on the second two. You can find the full list of all the states here.
  • Here's an interesting way to track migration trends: U-Haul trucks. Counting the number of people that are packing up a truck and moving their stuff OUT, or packing up a truck and moving their stuff IN, isn't a bad way to figure out how your state is doing. And U-Haul says we were the number 24 growth state, reflecting a very modest net gain for Oklahoma, with 50.1 percent of U-Haul trucks here arriving compared to leaving. But hey, every .1 percent counts. In terms of cities, Edmond, Broken Arrow, and Yukon did the best with arriving trucks in the state.
  • Remember these two words: Meltdown and Spectre. Two scary-sounding words for two scary computer viruses, that Reuters reports could potentially compromise the computer chip in just about every desktop, laptop, smart phone, and tablet out there. As you might expect, the three main chip-makers, Intel, ARM and AMD, are working fast in making and distributing security patches. So far, there are no reports of any successful attacks by the virus, but experts say it's always good to keep all your machines and devices up-to-date on patches. You can read more about the threat here.
  • Steve Berg

     Steve Berg joined AM 740 and FM 102.3 Newstalk KRMG in the fall of 2008 and currently anchors the news segments of The KRMG Evening News. Born at St. Francis Hospital (the exact year is not important for our purposes here) and raised in the Brookside neighborhood, Steve is proud to call himself a native Tulsan. Steve is a graduate of Tulsa Edison High School and Oklahoma State University. His first job in broadcasting was at KOSU-FM radio in Stillwater. He then spent roughly 16 years in television, with stints in Pocatello, Idaho, Lansing, Michigan, and at KOTV in Tulsa, before turning his attention back to radio and his current job at KRMG.Steve has won multiple awards for his reporting during his career, most recently in 2010 from the Oklahoma Association of Broadcasters in the Feature Series and General News categories.In his free time, Steve enjoys running, snow skiing, reading, video games, movies, TV, trying out new one-of-a-kind restaurants and spending time with friends and family.

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  • A motorist spotted a body in the street around 11:27 p.m. Saturday night. The discovery happened near Young and Quaker. Tulsa Sgt. Dave Walker tells us the medical examiner was called out to help. “They were able to determine he had a gunshot wound to the back of the head,” Walker said.  “That is the reason he died.” Investigators believe a shots fired call about an hour before the body was found is related to this case. The name of the victim hasn't been released. Police don’t have a suspect or motive for the homicide.  Anyone with information regarding the case is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 918-596-COPS.   Walker adds this is Tulsa’s fifth homicide of 2018.  
  • Today will be perfect for outdoor activities. National Weather Service Meteorologist Chuck Hodges says we have a nice day ahead of us in and around Tulsa. “Should be topping out in the lower 60’s,” Hodges said.  “We’ll be kicking up a little more wind.” The low Sunday night will be closer to 57 degrees. If you get an extra day this weekend for Monday's holiday, make sure an umbrella is nearby. NWS is reporting we could see a few thunderstorms.   The high for Monday will be close to 61 degrees.  
  • In the wake of a fresh round of indictments in the wide-ranging investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election campaign, President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Saturday and Sunday to repeatedly express his frustration with the probe, again proclaiming his innocence, attacking his critics, and demanding attention instead on actions of the Obama Administration and Hillary Clinton. “I never said Russia did not meddle in the election,” the President tweeted on Sunday morning – though Mr. Trump has been very slow to embrace the concept that Russia was at fault, as he derided the investigations into Russian interference in 2016. “They are laughing their asses off in Moscow,” the President said on Twitter. “Get smart America!” Those were just a sampling of a number of tweets from this weekend, as the President let off steam on a number of fronts. I never said Russia did not meddle in the election, I said “it may be Russia, or China or another country or group, or it may be a 400 pound genius sitting in bed and playing with his computer.” The Russian “hoax” was that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia – it never did! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 18, 2018 If it was the GOAL of Russia to create discord, disruption and chaos within the U.S. then, with all of the Committee Hearings, Investigations and Party hatred, they have succeeded beyond their wildest dreams. They are laughing their asses off in Moscow. Get smart America! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 18, 2018 Finally, Liddle’ Adam Schiff, the leakin’ monster of no control, is now blaming the Obama Administration for Russian meddling in the 2016 Election. He is finally right about something. Obama was President, knew of the threat, and did nothing. Thank you Adam! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 18, 2018 The President even rebuked his own National Security Adviser, Gen. H.R. McMaster, over a point that Mr. Trump and his supporters have zeroed in on repeatedly – a lack of evidence that ties any Russian operation to the Trump Campaign. “General McMaster forgot to say that the results of the 2016 election were not impacted or changed by the Russians,” as the President again tried to switch the attention of the moment to questions that the GOP has raised about Hillary Clinton, the Steele Dossier, and the Democratic National Committee. General McMaster forgot to say that the results of the 2016 election were not impacted or changed by the Russians and that the only Collusion was between Russia and Crooked H, the DNC and the Dems. Remember the Dirty Dossier, Uranium, Speeches, Emails and the Podesta Company! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 18, 2018 Deputy A.G. Rod Rosenstein stated at the News Conference: “There is no allegation in the indictment that any American was a knowing participant in this illegal activity. There is no allegation in the indictment that the charged conduct altered the outcome of the 2016 election. — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 17, 2018 Funny how the Fake News Media doesn’t want to say that the Russian group was formed in 2014, long before my run for President. Maybe they knew I was going to run even though I didn’t know! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 17, 2018 “The Fake News Media never fails,” the President wrote on Saturday, repeatedly making the argument that any Russian interference in 2016 did not tip the scales of the election in his favor. “Funny how the Fake News Media doesn’t want to say that the Russian group was formed in 2014, long before my run for President,” the President added. “The Russian “hoax” was that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia – it never did!” he tweeted. Critics of the President noted what was missing in his Saturday and Sunday tweets about the Russia investigation was any pledge by Mr. Trump to implement tougher sanctions against Russia which were approved by the Congress, or to order tougher measures to stop any Russian meddling. Last week, the nation’s top intelligence officials all agreed that Russia was going to try to repeat their 2016 effort in the 2018 election – asked by Democrats if there was any specific order from the President to focus on that threat, the intelligence chiefs only indicated that they were focused on the matter. “Look, this is pretty simple,” said retired Gen. Michael Hayden, a former head of the National Security Agency. “The Russians objective was to mess with our heads.” “Based on his late PM – this AM joint Twitter meltdown, it’s safe to say “Trump” is having a nervous breakdown as Mueller’s walls close in,” said John Schindler, a former U.S. intelligence official who has been highly critical of the President’s statements on the Russia probe. Late on Saturday night, the President also drew in the Russia investigation to criticize the FBI over the mass shooting at a high school in Florida last week. ” They are spending too much time trying to prove Russian collusion with the Trump campaign,” the President said. Very sad that the FBI missed all of the many signals sent out by the Florida school shooter. This is not acceptable. They are spending too much time trying to prove Russian collusion with the Trump campaign – there is no collusion. Get back to the basics and make us all proud! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 18, 2018 Here is the latest Russia indictment from last Friday.
  • A man is dead following an auto-pedestrian collision Friday night in Tulsa. Officers at the scene tell us the crash happened around 10 p.m. near 21st and Memorial. “The pedestrian was crossing the street from the north to the south and was struck by a vehicle,” police said.  “The vehicle was heading eastbound.” The driver did stay at the scene. Investigators don't believe the driver was at fault for the collision.   Investigators reports the pedestrian was pronounced dead at the hospital.  As of early Saturday morning, his name hasn’t been released.  
  • When you look outside this morning, expect to see soggy conditions. However, National Weather Service Meteorologist Chuck Hodges says the Tulsa area won't remain wet all day. “We’ll probably get some filtered sunshine later in the day,” Hodges said.  “Temperatures should be topping out pretty close to 60.” The low Saturday night will be around 34 degrees. Sunday is probably the better bet for outdoor activities.  NWS is reporting cloudy skies and the high will be close to 67 degrees.   The Tulsa area could reach 72 degrees by Monday.