It's a Big World out There

Article excerpt

The University of Oklahoma hosts an international conference that attracts luminaries from all over the globe. A former British prime minister speaks in Oklahoma City. Some of our largest local companies announce mergers and acquisitions with foreign competitors. Lots of reasons for Oklahomans to take a global view of the news these days.

The Internet is a big help.

Many of the world's best newspapers all over the world post their news, features, even crossword puzzles, on the Web. You can get directly from the horse's mouth by visiting their sites. And given time differences (London is six hours ahead of us) you can get tomorrow's news from The Times of London tonight. There's also something very enlightening, sometimes even amusing, about reading these newspaper stories about the United States. Seeing yourself through another's eyes can be fascinating, and sometimes horrifying. Some of these sites are in foreign languages, which shouldn't be a problem for loyal readers of this column (eight of you, at last count) who will recall that two Web sites will translate entire Web pages for you. They are http://babelfish.altavista.digital.com/cgi- bin/translate? and http://www.travlang.com/languages/. Here are some best bets from Cybergeek's research: United Kingdom http://www.the-times.co.uk Complete? You've never seen a complete newspaper until you've read The Times of London. And it's all online, posted about 8 p.m. Oklahoma time every day. Usually between 250 and 300 stories are added daily. You can read some superb foreign coverage, some funny and droll commentary, even strangely interesting pieces about nature and gardening. Don't be put off by the registration request; it's all free. http://www.guardian.co.uk The Guardian and The Observer, two upscale and somewhat more liberal newspapers, also have daily online editions at this address. Neither is as complete as The Times, but the commentary is a little sharper and there's more photography. (Enough about cricket, already! And footy!) http://www.mirror.co.uk/ London's Daily Mirror is a flashy down-scale tabloid, and its Web site is a good cyberspace version. It's visually, well, stimulating, with rotating images, changing pictures, blinking things, hotlinks to circulation-building contest sites and, oh yes, some very short, punchy news stories. Wouldn't it be a kick if one of these contests were won by somebody in, say, Wewoka? http://www.independent.co.uk/ The Independent tries to be England's least biased newspaper. …