Effect of Violent Video Games on Kids; Dogs' Efforts to Keep Mail Safe; Spanish Government Sues Over Oil Spills
Aired May 18, 2003 - 17:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
HEIDI COLLINS, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, everyone. I'm Heidi Collins.
Coming up NEXT@CNN for this Sunday, will your kids grow up to be criminals if they play violent video games? We will have a debate or whether games should be fun for all ages.
And we will tell you why the postal service is going to the dogs in an effort to keep the mail safe.
And inside "The Matrix Reloaded." The special effects are wowing the crowds. One of the guys who created those effects will tell us how he did it.
The big video game convention icon, E3, wrapped up in L.A. on Friday. It's a big target for those who criticize the violent content in some video games. And joining me now are Daphne White of the Lion and Lamb Project, a nonprofit that tries to keep violent and sexually explicit material out of the hands of children, and also Carolyn Rauch, senior vice president of Interactive Digital Software Association, industry sponsor of E3, the Electronic Entertainment Expo.
Hi to both of you, and thanks so much for being here. We certainly appreciate it. I'd like to start with you, Ms. White. Let's go ahead and talk a little bit about what is so wrong with violence in video games.
DAPHNE WHITE, THE LION AND THE LAMB PROJECT: Well, the issue is really what's marketed to children, not violence in games, but the fact that adult rated violent games are marketed to ever younger children, and there's an awful lot of public health research now showing that children learn through play. That's why they go to kindergarten and to school, and when we give them an unending diet of violence, they're going to learn that that's normal behavior. That's really the issue, the marketing to children, not just the violence in video games for adults.
COLLINS: Ms. Rauch, is that really the issue?
CAROLYN RAUCH, INTERACTIVE DIGITAL SOFTWARE ASSOCIATION: Well, the industry actually agrees with Ms. White that games that are made for adults should not get into the hands of children, which is why the industry does strict guidelines about making sure that publishers do not target marketing of M rated games at kids. In addition, we have -- all our games are clearly rated so that you can tell what is in the package before you buy it, and we do work with retailers to try to enforce the rating system as well.
So, we do feel that it's important to keep these games away from kids, but you have to understand that the vast majority of people who play games are actually over 18. So, the industry is going to make content for those people just as the film, the music and the movie industry make those -- make content for adults well.
COLLINS: But do I understand it correctly that this actual -- this rating system is not enforced at the retail level, and it's actually a rating system that comes from the gaming industry itself? So, it would seem the question is, what's the point?
RAUCH: Well, it is actually enforced at many retailers, and we're working with retailers to enforce it more and more. The rating system is an independent body that uses a demographically diverse group of parents who rate the products. It's not the industry itself who rates the products, but it's parents and other people from all walks of life who actually rate the products.
COLLINS: Ms. White, do you agree with that?
WHITE: No, I don't agree with that. First of all, 75 percent of children -- 78 percent of children who go into retail stores right now are able to buy these adult rated games, according to the Federal Trade Commission. So, the industry self-regulation is not working.
It is not an independent ratings board. The president of the ratings board is hired by the trade association that Ms. Rauch works for. The ratings are paid for by industry. Parents cannot trust them. For example, right now, the movie "The Matrix" just came out, rated R, it's a very mature movie. The video game that came out same day, same producers. Video clips from the movie are in the game. It's rated T for teen.
As a parent, I find that confusing, and I cannot trust the rating system, I see a lot of problems with it. I wish it was independent.
COLLINS: Let's go ahead and talk then. I'm sorry. Let's go ahead and talk then along that same line about the responsibility and whose responsibility it is to keep these violent and sexually explicit material video type games out of the hands of children. Ms. Rauch, you can start.
RAUCH: I would have to disagree with Ms. White. The fact is that , according to the Federal Trade Commission, 82 percent of the time, parents are with kids when they buy or rent games. Our own studies show that 90 percent of the time that's the case. If kids are getting violent games with games with mature rated content, they're getting them from their parents.
And I'm glad to live in a society where government, where retailers, where industry are not making those decisions about what I bring into my household for my child to see, but where it's my responsibility as a parent to do that. I know that that can be daunting sometimes, and I agree with Ms. White on that, but I'm glad to take that responsibility as a tradeoff living in a society where we value first amendment and a publisher's right to make content for all ages and all genders.
COLLINS: Is it all up to the parents, Ms. White?
WHITE: It is up to the parents, and I'm glad to hear Ms. Rauch say that. However, her industry has been fighting every attempt to put real power in the hands of parents. They just want to have virtual power in the hands of parents.
There have been ordinances passed in many cities, and there is a federal legislation in Congress by Congressman Baca, which would allow parents, only parents, only adults, to buy adult rated games and give them to their children if they so choose.
The industry has been lobbying heavily against that legislation, has sued the city of Indianapolis and St. Louis, which have passed similar ordinances, threatened to sue other cities as far as away as Fairbanks, Alaska. This industry is not interested in giving parents control. They just have a facade of doing that.
I totally think parents should have control, which is why, I think, just like children cannot buy cigarettes and alcohol at retail by themselves, an adult needs to buy adult products. Parents should be able to purchase it, but not children, and that's our position because right now the industry is, despite what Ms. Rauch says, marketing these products directly to children.
And the Federal Trade Commission found that 40 percent of people who play these games, showing the adult rated games, are under 18.
Clearly, if children were not a major part of the audience, the video game industry would not be fighting any attempt at real regulation, they would work with us and with Congressman Baca.
RAUCH: Ms. White, I think it's also important to point out that some video that we're seeing on our screen, just so that everyone knows, we are looking at a number of different video games, some of which are violent and some of which are not. Not every video game that's out there is violent.
COLLINS: Ms. Rauch, you've been shaking your head. I want to give you a chance to speak here.
RAUCH: Well, the fact is, again, the industry does have very strict marketing guidelines to ensure the publishers do not market these games to kids, but again, the truth is that 82 percent of the time, parents are involved in the purchase of the game.
There's no reason to have legislation for this, and the reason we're fighting it is twofold. One is because it's redundant, parents are involved in the purchase.
And two is because we're fighting it on a First Amendment basis. We have a right to make these products just as the other entertainment industries have the right to make their products, and it's important that we fight for that right as Americans to ensure that the First Amendment is protected.
COLLINS: And, unfortunately, that is going to have to be the last word. I'm so sorry. I hope I kept it fair for the both of you, Carolyn Rauch and Daphne White. Certainly, we appreciate your thoughts on this issue. Thanks so much.
WHITE: Thank you.
COLLINS: Still to come today, what's the state of the world's oceans? Find out if the predators of the seas can bounce back from high tech fishing methods.
And we'll show you the first pictures of a tiny master of disguise. Stay with us on NEXT@CNN.
COLLINS: In environment news this week, the Spanish government is suing the American Shipping Bureau over last November's oil spill that dumped 85,000 tons of crude oil off the French and Spanish coasts. The ASB is the organization responsible for certifying that ships are safe and seaworthy.
The $5 billion lawsuit filed in court says the bureau should have known the oil tanker "Prestige" was in no shape to travel. Spain says damage costs already exceed $1 billion.
Concerns over ear piercing sonar tests off the coast of Washington state on May 5. The U.S. Naval destroyer Shoup tested its mid-range sonar for five hours that day, and whales began to pool up and hug the shoreline. Now carcasses of harbor porpoises are being found, and marine biologists suspect sonar may be to blame. Scientists will perform a necropsy, or animal autopsy, or some of the porpoises to look for ruptured eardrums.
These are the first images now of the world's smallest known species of seahorse, tiny, orange and smaller than most finger nails, it is almost impossible to spot. Marine biologist Sara Lourie, who identified the new species, named it hippocampus denise after underwater photographer, Denise Tackett.
The species lives in the coral reefs of the western Pacific where they are often poached for Asian medicine.
He's feisty. Veterinarians at Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa are caring for a baby male manatee just a few days rescued in Naples, Florida. His name is Buttonwood, and the folks say he is the youngest manatee they've ever tried to rehabilitate. Vets are nursing him and feeding him formula to fatten him up. He is underweight by 48 pounds. The little guy was found by two fishermen last Wednesday and was in critical condition.
Biologists are an warning some of the giants of the ocean, including a lot of fish we like to eat, could some day go the way of dinosaurs if steps are not taken to control overfishing. A 10-year study in the scientific journal, "Nature", says populations of predatory fish like sharks, marlin, tuna and swordfish are down by 90 percent.
Researchers say to keep up with global demand, high tech fishing methods have scoured parts of the ocean leaving too few of some species to reproduce. But some in the fishing industry question the study's dire predictions, saying they would be the first to suffer if the fish supply disappeared.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN CONNELLY, NATIONAL FISHERIES INSTITUTE: There are areas of the world, and there are species that are overfished and, in those cases, government and industry work together to try to find the solution, the common sense solution that allows fishermen to continue to develop their product and provide that kind of healthy food choice to the American and global consumer, but we have to work with government to do that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COLLINS: Marine biologist, Sylvia Earle, has seen the ocean from many vantage points as chief scientist for the NOAA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and currently as explorer in residence for the National Geographic Society. Her concerns about the health of the oceans goes beyond this week's fish population study.
SYLVIA EARLE, THE NATIONAL OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC ADMINISTRATION: The fish that we see on our menus, swordfish, tuna, grouper, snapper, they are the lions, the tigers, of the ocean , and it's having an impact on places like the coral reefs, where we've not only taken out the carnivorous fish, the groupers, the snappers and barracuda, sharks and the like, but we've also taken other things, the turtles, the herbivores. We have taken the manatees out of the areas in the Caribbean and really elsewhere in the world, and this disruption to the system makes such systems vulnerable to changes as they come by, whether it's in terms of disease or terms or global warming for that matter.
What has really put on the pressure is the high, highly industrialized scale, large scale taking and markets that are now global so that a fish taken from the North Atlantic can be in the Tokyo fish market the next day. If people were aware of the real cost of the swordfish on their plate, they would be, I think for the most, part appalled and take a stand.
One key is to think differently about the ocean, that the value of fish alive, just as the value of birds alive and other wildlife, has occurred to us over the last century. Once the ocean afforded some protection because it was so big, so vast, that there were some places, just because of their inaccessibility, that made it possible for populations to recover from being decimated. That's simply not true at this point in time.
We learned with whales half a century ago that the first thing, if you want to see a population recover, what do you do? You stop killing them. It's the logical thing to do. We did it with striped bass. When their populations got to a perilously low level, for five years, a moratorium was established, and we actually stopped killing them. And as luck would have it, there were a couple of really good years for striped bass during this time of full protection, and they recovered.
Public awareness is really the major thing. Think of fish as wildlife. Ask questions about where did this fish come from, how was it taken? What are the techniques, what damage was done, what's the by catch? These are things that individuals can do.
Now, some have said, and still say, ah, the ocean, so big, so vast, so resilient, that human beings can't really cause a big problem there. We can't cause any species to become extinct. Well, we know better now.
Just as we have the power to harm the ocean, we have the power to put in place policies and modify our own behavior in ways that would be an insurance policy for the future of the sea, for the creatures there, and for us, protecting special critical areas in the ocean.
I want everybody to go jump in the ocean to see for themselves how beautiful it is, how important it is to get acquainted with fish swimming in the ocean, rather than just swimming with lemon slices and butter. We can do in the Twenty-first Century what predecessors started in the Twentieth so that people can look back because I hope my grandchildren and great-grandchildren will do the same to us, thanks for being aware and for taking care so that we can have a world at least as good as the world that we now know.
COLLINS: Just want to take a quick moment to remind everyone, in case you weren't watching, yesterday we did hear from the National Fisheries Institute who disagreed with this new study. Today, a different perspective from marine biologist, Sylvia Earle.
There is a lot more yet to come on NEXT@CNN. If you're looking for a gadget you can use to take pictures and call home, you'll want to check out our roundup of the latest combination cell phone cameras. That and more when NEXT returns.
COLLINS: May is a month for graduations and perhaps that first trip to the beach on Memorial Day weekend. Some great photo opportunities for everybody. The new combo cell phone cameras are all the rage lately, and you can find a nice spread in the most recent edition of "Popular Science" magazine.
Joining us now to show off some of these hot new products is pop sci-tech editor, Suzanne Kantra Kirschner. Suzanne, what do you have for us? I know there are several models out there, right?
SUZANNE KANTRA KIRSCHNER, "POPULAR SCIENCE": Yes, we do, and this first model, the Sony Erickson T-610 is really all about style. It's the smallest and the lightest of the group, and the camera's actually a little bit of an -- not an afterthought -- but it's a lower resolution than some of the other cameras. You can see the lens here on the back. And what they've done nicely about this is it's just three steps to be able to send a picture to somebody else. The other ones you have to go through a lot more steps.
We have from Siemens the XX1, which is really the workhorse of the group, and in addition to being able to take pictures, you can take video clips. It has a very full-featured operating system so you can play games. It's a PDA. It has an MP3 player built into it, an FM radio, so, you know, really anything you would wanted to do with this phone, you can do.
COLLINS: So, I have to ask, even before you go on, Suzanne. What's the market for this? I mean, do I need this?
KIRSCHNER: Well, you don't need it. It's really one of those things that you're looking at, you know, maybe you and your friends a long time ago used to pile into a photo booth and take a picture. It's sort of a spur of the moment thing, or maybe one of your girlfriends has a taste in dresses, and you see one in a store window, and you know it's just for her, it's on sale, so you take a picture, and you send the picture to her just to say hey, look at this, I really think you would like it, go to the store and buy it.
So, it's those sort of moments in time that now that you can share with people that you wouldn't, you know, you wouldn't be taking a camera with you in your day-to-day life, now you can share these images with your friends and family.
COLLINS: So, what about the photo quality?
KIRSCHNER: Well, it's really, as we were saying, for that moment-to-moment, you know, sharing on a phone, sharing maybe in an e- mail. It's not for printing out.
The Sony Erickson phone, for instance, is really just for phone to phone. It goes up to what's called VGA quality, which means that maybe you could make like a wallet size print, but it's not something you're going to want to keep.
COLLINS: Do you think that the camera feature, though, on these phones will actually just kind of take up space? I mean, I know that we have web browsing capabilities on some of our phones, but a lot of people don't use that.
KIRSCHNER: Well, they don't use it because it's not that easy to use, and one of the things that's going to be important is make sure they are easy to use. One or two steps, for instance, this Samsung a A-600 has a flash built into it. Some of the other phones don't have that. So, you need to make sure that it can be used in all different types of lighting conditions. We are seeing in Japan, in terms of the market, they are selling one out of every two or three phones is going to have a camera built into it. So, while that's not necessarily a true indicator of what's going to happen here it, it does make it likely that, you know, especially younger people are going to want to share images with other people.
COLLINS: I'm sure they will. Where do you see the trend going? We have just about everything available to us now.
KIRSCHNER: We certainly do, and as I was saying about the SX1,it's a PDA it's an MP3 player, a radio. One of the things that we're really seeing is these are becoming entertainment devices, and out at the E3 Expo in Los Angeles, that big gaming show, they were showing Nokia's NGage, which is a combination gaming cell phone so that you can play wirelessly with people. So, we're seeing a lot more of that.
Kyocera is coming out with a phone called the Curve. You can do a lot of gaming right now, but you also aren't able to game the way you would on, say, one of the Nintendo Game Boys because you can't use two-button action. Nokia's fixing that by -- with their NGage system, so it's definitely moving along in that direction.
COLLINS: It certainly sounds like it. All right, Suzanne Kantra Kirschner from "Popular Science" magazine. Thanks so much for being with us
KIRSCHNER: Thank you.
COLLINS: Well just ahead in our next half hour, we'll talk with Dr. Sanjay Gupta, recently back from the war in Iraq. He tells us how technology has changed life and death on the battlefield. That and more. Don't go away.
COLLINS: It's been less than two months since the war in Iraq started -- barely a month since it ended. Some of the most stirring images of that conflict came from our own Dr. Sanjay Gupta.
He traveled for six weeks with the devil docs, doctors who faced the front lines in trucks and helicopters and brought emergency medical care to the edge of combat -- operating under the threat of attack -- and not since Vietnam has the military placed a group of combat surgeons and nurses so close to the front lines.
This is their story.
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In the history of medicine on the battlefield, this is a pivotal moment.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What we're going to have to do is do an amputation.
GUPTA: A mobile operating room called the forward recussitative surgical system is being used for the first time ever in the war in Iraq.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE; This is actually the O.R., and ...
GUPTA: Not like your O.R. back home, is it?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Not at all. However, it does function and functions well.
GUPTA: Captain H.R. Bauman (ph) is one of the Devil Docs. He's also the surgeon who helped design this, an operating room in the middle of the desert.
The tents, operating lights, oxygen compressers, and x-ray cases can be broken down in one hour and loaded onto trucks by the Devil Docs themselves.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Listen up. We are very flexible, moving north.
GUPTA: This mobile unit can be set up in two hours, and it is designed to travel forward with the frontline troops.
COLLINS: And joining us now is Dr. Sanjay Gupta.
Sanjay, you brought us live pictures never seen before of field medicine in a way it had never been done before.
GUPTA: Yes, absolutely right, Heidi.
One of the most amazing things about this -- they could break down and set up these operating rooms in an hour. They'd break it down in an hour, set it back up in an hour, and they were constantly traveling.
There were six of these mobile surgical units all over the desert of Iraq, sort of piggy-backing over one another to constantly be supporting the frontline troops. And the thing as you mentioned, Heidi, some of the images of this particular frontline unit was that all the sort of bad things in a war, all the horrible images, stories that you can imagine, all sort of got funneled to these Devil Docs. They didn't have the luxury of looking the other way. They had to look some of these injuries right in the face, quite literally, and I think some of these stories are going to stick around forever. We spent quite a bit of time talking about that in this documentary -- Heidi.
COLLINS: I'm sure it's certainly something to think about in that regard. Also something to think about is the technology behind this. We call them the forward resuscitating surgical systems. There were six of them each -- each at the cost of about $330,000. What about that system is so spectacular to you as a doctor?
GUPTA: It's sort of a simple yet brilliant concept -- these forward systems. They learn from past history.
In the Gulf War, they found it was taking too long to get the injured from the frontline to the rear. It was taking over an hour -- the golden hour, as doctors call that particular 60-minute period.
Instead of taking the injured back in this particular conflict, they said let's bring the back -- the definitive care stations -- forward and try and get patients care within an hour.
That was obviously sort of a remarkable thing and novel thing to this conflict. These docs were traveling with the forward troops and so there was a sort of poignant moments when they were taking care of patients while placing themselves in harm's way so a little bit of a juxtaposition on the battlefield.
They took care of all sorts of injuries -- orthopedic injuries, general surgical injuries, neurosurgical injuries -- all that stuff in the middle of the desert, 120 degrees outside, sand blowing everywhere, just the most austere conditions you can imagine. And as you heard in that glimpse of the documentary, it worked and worked very well.
COLLINS: With these portable tents now -- what piece of equipment in particular was most interesting to you to find, as you say, in the middle of a desert?
I think the most amazing thing was they were actually doing procedures with general anesthesia. This wasn't putting on Band-Aids and wrapping up wounds. This was actually putting patients under general anesthesia and doing big operations -- operations that would be challenging even in a bright shiny hospital.
They were doing these operations in the middle of tents. You can see some of the pictures there. Obviously -- people sort of a combination of military in the green shirts and the surgical gowns behind them. That's exactly what it was like out there, but very challenging operations. Large weapons create such an impact on the human body. These doctors were able to take care of a lot of those.
COLLINS: Challenging too, Sanjay, as far as sterile conditions go in that environment?
Yes, absolutely. It was interesting because people ask about that a lot. Sort of simple but brilliant concepts.
They would put a floor down as part of the tent. That would keep a lot of the dust from coming up, and as you walked in to these tents, there were layers to the tents, so you'd walk into another layer, zip it up and down, and that did a lot to cut down on the sand and dust blowing in.
It was less than than ideal. If these patients -- both Iraqi and coalition force members -- did not get these operations within that 60 minutes, it was predicted that they would die. So it was the best that they could do and, again, a novel concept hadn't been done in this sort of conflict before.
COLLINS: Wow. Interesting for you to see, I am certain of that. And interesting for our viewers to see as well.
Want to remind everyone that you can learn more about Dr. Gupta's extraordinary experience with the doctors and their work in Iraq when CNN presents "Devil Docs." That's tonight at 8:00 p.m. Eastern.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta, thanks so much.
And we'll be back right after a break. Find out why canines may be nosing through your mail. We'll also show you the latest NASA test as the space agency continues its hunt for the cause of the shuttle "Columbia" disaster.
COLLINS: Movies like "The Core" toy with the idea of traveling to the center of the earth, but it's 2,000 miles to the earth's core. How would you get there?
David Stephenson, a professor planetary science at Cal Tech, has an idea, and the journal "Nature" has published it.
What if we could blast a huge crack in the earth and pour thousands of tons of liquid iron into the crack, add a probe that would be carried by the liquid iron deep into the earth. As the molten iron flowed, it would harden and seal up the crack behind it.
Stephenson figures it would take about a week to get to the earth's core, where, of course, the probe would take all sorts of scientific readings and beam the data back via sound waves.
Stephenson says he doesn't have all the answers to the questions, but isn't this about where we were with space travel once?
Taking a look at some headlines on the "NEXT NEWS" beat now, investigators looking for the cause of the shuttle "Columbia" tragedy completed another round of tests.
The working theory is that a piece of foam insulation from a fuel tank damaged the shuttle's left wing just after takeoff. Researchers used a nitrogen-propelled gun to shoot chunks of foam at thermal protection tiles of the main landing-gear door.
High-speed cameras captured thousands of frames as different sizes of foam were shot at different speeds and angles. Over the next few weeks, more tests will shoot foam at carbon-wing panels, where damage to "Columbia" likely occurred.
Meanwhile, at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, workers are reconstructing the shuttle after spending the past three months sorting the debris that was scattered over several states. Thirty- eight percent of "Columbia" has now been recovered.
In Washington, Friday, Attorney General John Ashcroft detailed the latest federal efforts to stop cyber crime.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN ASHCROFT, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: Operation E-con (ph) sends a clear message to those trolling the Internet for victims. Illegal activities in the virtual world have real-world consequences.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COLLINS: Ashcroft says since January, 90 separate federal investigations of Internet scams offering everything from fake prescriptions to Russian brides have put a dent in Web fraud.
The Justice Department says the 48,000 Internet fraud complaints it got last year were triple the total from 2001.
Well, you can't believe every offer that comes along in your e- mail these days, but this week, some alleged Internet spammers and scammers learned that the only thing getting longer is the arm of the law.
On Wednesday, Howard Carmac (ph) -- Earthlink's so-called buffalo spammer -- was arraigned in New York. He's the first to be charged under the state's identity theft law. The state alleges Carmac forged e-mail addresses and stole accounts while sending out 825 million e- mails.
And games got smaller at the big video game show in L.A. this week. Nokia introduced the N-gauge (ph), a combination cell phone, FM radio, digital music player, and video game device -- due out this Fall for a retail price of 300 bucks.
You just saw some of the different models just a few moments ago with our guest here. And Sony wants to give Nintendo Game Boy a run for its money with a new handheld Play Station. The Japanese electronic giant is being secretive about the details and design but says the device will be out late next year.
Some U.S. mail is going to the dogs. But that's a good thing when it comes to the mail that's carried on passenger airlines.
Patty Davis joins us now from Reagan National Airport in Washington with details on a new assignment for some hard-working, four-footed federal employees.
PATTY DAVIS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Heidi.
The Transportation Security Administration is testing bomb- sniffing dogs to see if they can help get U.S. mail back on passenger planes. That mail has been banned, for the most part, banned since the September 11 terror attacks. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)
DAVIS (voice-over): It's 3:00 in the morning, and these dogs are hard at work at Newark Liberty International Airport -- sniffing for explosives in the U.S. mail.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Heros (ph) -- if he finds something, he is passive. He would sit down.
DAVIS: Since September 11, passenger planes have been banned from carrying any mail weighing more than a pound.
Newark is one of 12 airports across the country where the Transportation Security Administration is testing out bomb-sniffing dogs to see if they can help mail safely return.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The dogs are very accurate. They're mobile. They can cover a lot of mail in a short period of time. There are many people who believe that dogs are better than any machine man could build.
DAVIS: Right now, dogs are used to screen domestic priority mail only. Even that would help financially crunched airlines, which estimate they've lost hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue from the ban. But some security experts say dogs will never be able to restore mail to the 2.5 billion tons airlines used to carry every year.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Dogs are good, but they get tired after about 45 minutes. We don't have any technology right now, and that's what we really need is technology that can quickly and efficiently process all of the mail.
DAVIS: While this mail is now being screened before it boards the airlines, Congressman Adam Schiff says more needs to be done to safeguard the other cargo that passenger planes carry.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People are shocked to learn that fully half of the cargo in the belly of their passenger plane is completely unchecked for explosives.
DAVIS: The TSA says it has tightened up restrictions on cargo carried on passenger planes, and it's considering using dogs as well as new technology to help.
DAVIS: Now, as for the U.S. mail, the TSA says its experiment with these bomb-sniffing dogs is working. It does plan to expand that program to other large airports by the end of this year -- Heidi.
COLLINS: So Patty, what does this mean to you and me and our viewers as U.S. postal customers?
DAVIS: Well, as a postal customer, your mail is going to be going about the speed it was because the post office found different ways to get it where it needs to go.
What's it's really going to make a difference to is these airlines. They're losing billions and billions of dollars right now -- really financially troubled. A couple hundred million here, a couple hundred million there is certainly going to help them, and in a sense, that helps you as maybe not a postal customer but as an airline customer -- Heidi.
COLLINS: All right, Patty Davis, live from Reagan National Airport.
When NEXT@CNN returns, we'll answer the question that's on a lot of moviegoers minds -- how did they create all these cool special effects in "The Matrix Reloaded."
We'll talk with one of the guys in charge.
DAVID KIRKPATRICK, EDITOR, "FORTUNE" MAGAZINE: Once you start moving around with a computer, what you want is the same set of functionality regardless of the size of the device -- something on which you can go on the Internet, you can send e-mail.
I think, over time, more and more people are just going to travel with a souped-up PDA that is also a cell phone. Certainly, all devices are going toward a smaller, more portable form factor which increasingly can do all the same things as a laptop.
One thing that hasn't happened yet that has to happen soon is Y- FI (ph) wireless technology has to begin working with PDAs. This Y-FI networking that's going into every coffee shop, hotel, airport -- it's sort of, initially, being oriented toward portable PCs but it makes even more sense for it to work with PDAs, and I think you'll see that happening more.
Everything is becoming a communicator. Everything wants to go in your pocket, and everything is going to be driven by voice and e-mail.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COLLINS: "The Matrix Reloaded" this weekend to high kicks, high tech, and high sales. And joining us is one of the men behind all that action, George Borshukov. He is the visual effects supervisor for the "Matrix" sequel.
George, welcome to you.
GEORGE BORSHUKOV, VISUAL EFFECTS SUPERVISOR, "THE MATRIX RELOADED": Thank you. Welcome.
COLLINS: I know that your company actually came up with a new way of capturing all of that action in this movie. And it's called virtual cinematography. What is it? Yes. Virtual cinematography, basically, is the technique that allows us to (UNINTELLIGIBLE) integrate all the impossible, entirely computer-generated parts of the fight between you and 100 (UNINTELLIGIBLE) with those that were live action. And we did that by basically capturing as much as possible from the real world, and if you let me go through a couple of the components of virtual cinematography.
First, we use photographs of the actual film sets taken from different positions as well as a three-dimensional scan using a laser of a set that provides a three-dimensional model. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) texture by projecting the images onto the surface and blending them (UNINTELLIGIBLE).
Next we use a series of (UNINTELLIGIBLE) images that capture the lighting on the set and tells us how much light arrives at each part of the set.
The motion of the actors was captured with motion capture, which is then edited and layered and multiplied in the computer tool and then serves as a basis for a cloning simulation.
The most difficult part of this whole process, though, of creating a virtual actor is rendering a believable human face, and for that, we came up with a whole new technology called universal capture -- which let's us record an actual actor's performance, and then we can extract in the computer and mount in the computer-generated bodies.
For the realistic cloning appearance, we actually measured samples of the actor's costumes using amazing technology that was originally built for stealth aircraft and design of their paints. They're invisible to radar.
And finally, all these pieces are brought together into a rendering problem -- a ray tracer called manta ray -- which does proper simulation of the lighting how it bounces off surfaces and it arrives at the camera where the computer-generated image is formed.
COLLINS: Well, George, it all sounds easy enough.
Tell me if you could, sort of in layman's terms -- just in a quick sentence or two -- what is it about all of this highly technical processes that the moviegoer is going to notice on the screen when they watch this movie in particular.
BORSHUKOV: What they're going to notice is something they actually they haven't experienced before. It's something that looks completely real to their eye, but it doesn't feel real because the camera shows events and things that are impossible to have been filmed for real -- in particular, the way the fight between (UNINTELLIGIBLE) looks choreographed and shown with this virtual camera buzzing around the action. It's something that, perceptually, we had never seen before so hopefully the viewer would be completely surprised.
COLLINS: And that scene, I know, was almost entirely computer generated, right?
BORSHUKOV: Correct. Yes. The whole last two minutes of it are entirely computer-generated using virtual cinematography.
COLLINS: How long does it actually take to create a single scene in a fashion like this?
BORSHUKOV: Well, to tell you the truth it took three and a half years to develop all these techniques (UNINTELLIGIBLE) work of about 100 people, but once now we're at the point we're done with all the technology, we can assemble a scene like that in a matter of a couple of weeks. It's still a fairly expensive process that took an amazing amount of resources and skilled artists and engineers to come up with. But the vision of us sampling as much as possible from the real world allowed us to produce these images never seen before.
COLLINS: George, just a couple of seconds left here. What do you see after this sort of technology is being used on this movie as the future for other movies to come?
BORSHUKOV: Well, I could see more and more of just allowing the cinematographers and the film makers using this tool to create even more unbelievable images on the screen that excite the audience and gives them what they want.
COLLINS: It certainly has excited a few audiences this weekend. That is for sure. George Borshukov, the visual effects supervisor for the "Matrix" sequel.
Thanks again for your time, George.
BORSHUKOV: Thank you.
COLLINS: That is it for this edition of NEXT@CNN.
Want to let you know what's coming up next week. Best beaches and vanishing shorelines.
We'll tell you what's on the latest list of America's best beaches and why some other coastlines are disappearing. We hope you'll join us next Saturday and Sunday.
But coming up tonight at 6:00 p.m., CNN LIVE SUNDAY -- with a farewell to "Les Miserable" followed by PEOPLE IN THE NEWS profiling Madonna and (UNINTELLIGIBLE) at 7 p.m. Eastern. And at 8 p.m. -- CNN PRESENTS "Devil Docs" with Dr. Sanjay Gupta.
I'm Heidi Collins. I'll be back with the latest headlines after a quick break.
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