Friday, August 31, 2007

Willy Vandersteen
Willy Vandersteen (February 15, 1913 - August 28, 1990) was a Flemish creator of comic books. His most famous creation is the Spike and Suzy series, known as Suske en Wiske in Dutch.

Willy Vandersteen was born in Antwerp in 1913 in a poor family. He made many illustrations during the second World War, some of them for Nazi-friendly publications, but most fairly neutral and juvenile. For the youth magazine Wonderland he created Thor de holbewoner (Thor the troglodyte).
In 1943, he published his first comic album, Piwo (about the adventures of a wooden horse), followed by two more episodes in 1944 and 1946.

Youth and early work
After the war, many publications aimed at youth appeared in Belgium (either only in Flemish or in French, or in two editions), and Willy Vandersteen worked for many of these. He made some short comics and some longer adventures for the noted magazine Bravo, which also employed people like Edgar P. Jacobs.
As the best publishing opportunities in Flanders were in newspapers, Willy Vandersteen began the adventures of Rikki en Wiske in De Nieuwe Standaard on March 30, 1945, though Vandersteen was disappointed to see the editor had renamed the strip Rikki en Wiske. the arrangement lasted until 1959, producing the material collected in The Blue Series.

After World War II
Willy Vandersteen has always had a huge diversity of series, and besides Suske en Wiske, he also is known for De Familie Snoek (The Snoek family), De grappen van Lambik (Lambik's Jokes, a spin off from Suske en Wiske), Jerom (another spin-off), Bessy (a series about a boy in the Far West and his dog, based on Lassie), De Rode Ridder (Red Knight, a medieval, more realistic series), Karl May, Robert en Bertrand (about two tramps around 1900), and De Geuzen (about the Dutch resistance to the Spanish rulers at the end of the 16th century). In the forties and the early fifties, he made several other short-lived series, now difficult to find.

Other work
Bessy and De Rode Ridder were truly successful, although both were eclipsed by the success of Suske en Wiske, which had first editions of some 400,000 copies for every new book (four to six a year) in the 1970's, in Dutch only. Suske en Wiske has been translated into most major languages and some adventures with local interest also into more exotic languages, like Tibetan. In Germany, Bessy was highly successful, with new weekly episodes. In the end, more than a thousand were made.
Willy Vandersteen was awarded the 1977 Angoulême Best foreign comics author prize.

The studio
His early comics are among the most highly sought after by Flemish comics collectors nowadays and can fetch prices of up to a few thousand Euros. A complete collection, including commercial items, is almost impossible, as many of his early comics only appeared in ephemera, short-lived magazines with a limited audience. Original drawings are highly sought after.

Themes and influences
According to UNESCO's Index Translationum, Vandersteen is the second most often translated Dutch language author, after Anne Frank.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

In baseball, a single is the most common type of base hit, accomplished through the act of a batter safely reaching first base by hitting a fair ball (thus becoming a runner) and getting to first base before a fielder puts him out. As an exception, a batter-runner reaching first base safely is not credited with a single when an infielder attempts to put out another runner on the first play; this is one type of a fielder's choice. Also, a batter-runner reaching first base on a play due to an fielder's error trying to put him out at first base or another runner out (as a fielder's choice) is not credited with a single.
On a single hit to the outfield, any runners on second base or third base normally score, and sometimes the runner from first base is able to advance to third base. Depending on the location of the hit, a quick recovery by the outfielder can prevent such an advance or create a play on the advancing runner.
Hitters who focus on hitting singles rather than doubles or home runs are often called "contact hitters". Contact hitters who rely on positioning their hits well and having fast running speed to achieve singles are often called "slap hitters". Ty Cobb, Pete Rose, Tony Gwynn, and Ichiro Suzuki are examples of contact hitters; of these, Rose and Suzuki might be called slap hitters.

Single (baseball) Symbol

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Léopold I of Belgium
Leopold I (Leopold George Christian Frederick of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, later of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha) (b. Coburg, 16 December 1790 - d. Laeken/Laken, 10 December 1865) was from 21 July 1831 the first King of the Belgians. He was the founder of the Belgian line of the House of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha. His children included Leopold II of Belgium and Empress Carlota of Mexico.

King of the Belgians
In 1830 the people of Greece offered Leopold the Greek crown, but he declined. After Belgium asserted its independence from the Netherlands on 4 October 1830, the Belgian National Congress, after considering several other candidates, asked Leopold to become king of the newly formed country. He accepted and became "King of the Belgians" on 26 June 1831. He swore allegiance to the constitution in front of the Sint Jacobs Church at Coudenbergh Place in Brussels on 21 July 1831. This day became the Belgian national holiday. Jules Van Praet would become his personal secretary.
Less than two weeks later, on 2 August, the Netherlands invaded Belgium. Skirmishes continued for eight years, but in 1839 the two countries signed the Treaty of London establishing Belgium's independence.
With the opening of the railway line between Brussels and Mechelen on 5 May 1835, one of King Leopold's fondest hopes—to build the first railway in continental Europe—became a reality.
In 1840 Leopold arranged the marriage of his niece Queen Victoria, the daughter of his sister Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, to his nephew Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, son of his brother Ernst I, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. Leopold would function as an advisor to his niece.
Leopold tried to pass laws to regulate female and child labor in 1842, but unsuccessfully. A wave of revolutions passed over Europe after the deposition of King Louis-Philippe from the French throne in 1848. Belgium remained neutral, mainly because of Leopold's diplomatic efforts.
In 1850, Leopold again lost a young wife, as Queen Louise-Marie died of tuberculosis at age 38. At 11:45am on 10 December 1865, the king died in Laken. He lies buried in the Royal vault at the Church of Our Lady, Laken Cemetery, Brussels, Belgium.

Monday, August 27, 2007

College of Computing

The College of Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology has roots stretching back to an Information Science degree established in 1964.

Georgia Institute of Technology College of Computing History

School of Computer Science
School of Interactive Computing
Computational Science & Engineering Division Programs, Departments and Schools

College of Computing Building
Klaus Advanced Computing Building Facilities

The College of Computing has evolved, along with advancing computing technology and applications, to offer an increasing variety of specialized degrees, including:

B.S. in Computer Science (a minor in Computer Science is also available)
B.S. in Computational Media (offered as a joint degree with the Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts) Graduate

Ph.D. in Computer Science
Ph.D. in Human-Centered Computing
Ph.D. in Algorithms, Combinatorics, and Optimization
Ph.D. in Bioengineering (offered as a joint degree with the College of Engineering)
Ph.D. in Bioinformatics (offered as a joint degree with the School of Biology) See also
Below are footnotes, as either explanatory notes or citations from references:

Sunday, August 26, 2007

The Championships, Wimbledon, commonly referred to as Wimbledon, is the oldest major championship in tennis and is widely considered to be the most prestigious. for two weeks (usually ending, at the latest, on the second Sunday of July) at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in London, England. The tournament is the third Grand Slam event played each year, preceded by the Australian Open and the French Open, and followed by the U.S. Open. The tournament duration is subject to extensions for rain.
Separate tournaments are simultaneously held, all at the same venue, for Gentlemen's Singles, Ladies' Singles, Gentlemen's Doubles, Ladies' Doubles and Mixed Doubles. Youth tournaments – Boys' Singles, Girls' Singles, Boys' Doubles and Girls' Doubles – are also held. Additionally, special invitational tournaments are held: the 35 and over Gentlemen's Doubles, 45 and over Gentlemen's Doubles, 35 and over Ladies' Doubles and wheelchair doubles.

Flag of Australia Australian Open
Flag of France French Open (Roland Garros)
Flag of the United Kingdom Wimbledon
Flag of the United States US Open Events
A total of 128 players feature in each singles event, 64 pairs in each single-sex doubles event, and 48 pairs in Mixed Doubles. Players and doubles pairs are admitted to the main events on the basis of their international rankings, with consideration also given to their previous performances at grasscourt events. Currently (since 2001) 32 male and female players are given seedings in the Gentlemen's and Ladies' singles while 16 teams are seeded in the doubles events.
The Committee of Management and the Referee evaluate all applications for entry, and determine which players may be admitted to the tournament directly. The committee may admit a player without a high enough ranking as a wild card. Usually, wild cards are players who have performed well during previous tournaments, or would stimulate public interest in Wimbledon by participating. The only wild card to win the Gentlemen's Singles Championship was Goran Ivanišević (2001). Players and pairs who neither have high enough rankings nor receive wild cards may participate in a qualifying tournament held one week before Wimbledon at the Bank of England Sports Ground in Roehampton. The singles qualifying competitions are three-round events; the same-sex doubles competitions last for only one round. There is no qualifying tournament for Mixed Doubles. No qualifier has won either the Gentlemen's Singles or the Ladies' Singles tournaments. The furthest that any qualifier has progressed in the main draw of a Singles tournament is the semi-final round: John McEnroe in 1977 and Vladimir Voltchkov of Belarus in 2000 (Gentlemen's Singles), and Alexandra Stevenson in 1999 (Ladies' Singles).
Players are admitted to the junior tournaments upon the recommendations of their national tennis associations, on their International Tennis Federation world rankings and, in the case of the singles events, on the basis of a qualifying competition. The Committee of Management determines which players may enter the four invitational events.
The Committee seeds the top players and pairs (thirty-two players in each main singles events, and sixteen pairs in each main doubles event) on the basis of their rankings. However, the Committee does also change the seedings due to a player's previous grass court performance. A majority of the entrants are unseeded. Only two unseeded players have ever won the Gentlemen's Singles Championship: Boris Becker in 1985 and Goran Ivanišević in 2001. (In 1985 there were only sixteen seeds - Becker was ranked 20th at the time; Ivanišević, however, was as low as 125th.) No unseeded player has captured the Ladies' Singles title; the lowest seeded female champion was Venus Williams, who won in 2007 as the twenty-third seed, beating her own record from 2005, when Williams won as the fourteenth seed. Unseeded pairs have won the doubles titles on numerous occasions; the 2005 Gentlemen's Doubles champions were not only unseeded, but also (for the first time ever) qualifiers.
See also: Women's Seeds at The Championships, Wimbledon

Players and seeding

Main article: All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club Grounds

Dark green and purple (sometimes also referred to as mauve) are the traditional Wimbledon colours. Green clothing was worn by the chair umpire, linesmen, ball boys and ball girls through the 2005 Championships; however, beginning with the 2006 Championships, officials, ball boys and ball girls were outfitted in new navy blue and cream coloured uniforms from American designer Ralph Lauren. This marked the first time in the history of the Championships that an outside company was used to design Wimbledon clothing. As of June 2006, Wimbledon's contract with Ralph Lauren is set to last until 2009.

Colours and uniforms
The All England Club requires players to wear "almost entirely white" clothing during matches (used as an excuse by a young Andre Agassi for not playing the tournament in 1990, although his decision may have had more to do with his game at the time being unsuited to grass; he later won the competition). No other Grand Slam tournament has such a strict dress code for players. During matches, female players are always referred to by the title "Miss" or "Mrs"; married female players were formerly and formally referred to by their husband's names: for example, Chris Evert-Lloyd appeared on scoreboards as "Mrs. J. M. Lloyd" during her marriage to John M. Lloyd. This custom has been abandoned; the title "Mr" is never used for male players.

Previously, players bowed or curtsied to members of the Royal Family seated in the Royal Box upon entering or leaving Centre Court. In 2003, however, the President of the All England Club, HRH The Duke of Kent, decided to discontinue the tradition. Now, players are required to bow or curtsy only if the Queen or the Prince of Wales is present.

Royal Family
For the spectators, strawberries and cream is the traditional snack at Wimbledon. Approximately 62,000 pounds of strawberries and 1,540 gallons of cream are sold each year during the Championships.

Strawberries and cream

Main article: Radio Wimbledon Radio Wimbledon
For over 60 years, the BBC has broadcast the tournament on television in the UK, splitting time for the many matches it covers between its two main terrestrial channels, BBC One and BBC Two. During the days of British Satellite Broadcasting, its sports channel carried extra coverage of Wimbledon for subscribers, and the BBC annually distributes its commercial-free feed to outlets worldwide. Americans have made a tradition of NBC's "Breakfast at Wimbledon" specials on the weekends, where live coverage starts early in the morning (the US being a minimum of 5 hours behind the UK) and continues well into the afternoon, interspersed with commentary and interviews from Bud Collins, whose tennis acumen and (in)famous patterned trousers are well-known to tennis fans in the USA. Collins was fired by NBC in 2007.
Wimbledon was also involved, unintentionally, in a piece of television history, on 1 July 1967. That was when the first, official, colour broadcast took place in the UK. Four hours live coverage of Wimbledon was shown on BBC2 (then the only colour channel in the UK), and although footage of that historic match no longer survives, the men's final that year is still held in the BBC archives, for it was the first men's final transmitted in colour.
From 2007, the most anticipated Wimbledon matches are transmitted in High Definition, on the BBC's free-to-air channel BBC HD, with continual live coverage during the tournament of Centre Court and Court No. 1 as well as an evening highlight show (The Best of Today at Wimbledon).

Television Coverage
Wimbledon is the only major grand slam where fans without tickets for play that day can queue up and still get seats on Centre Court, Court 1 and Court 2. Usually there are 2 queues and each are allotted about 250 seats for each court. Fans are handed vouchers when they arrive in their queue with a number on it and the following morning when the line moves towards the Grounds, stewards come through the line and hand out wristbands that are colour coded to the specific court. The voucher is then redeemed at the ticket office for the ticket.

The Gentlemen's Singles champion receives a silver gilt cup 18.5 inches (about 47 cm) in height and 7.5 inches (about 19 cm) in diameter. The trophy has been awarded since 1887 and bears the inscription: "The All England Lawn Tennis Club Single Handed Champion of the World." The Ladies' Singles champion receives a sterling silver salver commonly known as the "Venus Rosewater Dish", or simply the "Rosewater Dish". The salver, which is 18.75 inches (about 48 cm) in diameter, is decorated with figures from mythology. The winners of the Gentlemen's Doubles, Ladies' Doubles, and Mixed Doubles events receive silver cups. The runner-up in each event receives an inscribed silver plate. The trophies are usually presented by the President of the All England Club, The Duke of Kent, and by his wife, the Duchess of Kent.
At Wimbledon, more prize money was traditionally awarded in the Gentlemen's events than in the Ladies' events. However, as of 2007 prize money is equal at all levels (in part in response to a powerful protest by tennis player Venus Williams). In 2005, Wimbledon prize money exceeded a total of £10 million (£10,085,510) total for the first time. The sums awarded to the winners of each of the main events in 2006 are as follows (the amounts shown for the doubles events are per pair):
The revised prize money for the year 2007 is:
Total prize money at Wimbledon 2007 was nearly 9% more than in 2006.

Gentlemen's Singles: £655,000 (US $1,287,469)
Ladies' Singles: £625,000 (US $1,228,501)
Gentlemen's Doubles: £220,690 (US $407,265)
Ladies' Doubles: £205,280 (US $378,840)
Mixed Doubles: £90,000 (US $166,093)
Gentlemen's Singles Winner £700,000 (US $1,408,181.53)
Ladies' Singles Winner £700,000 (US $1,408,181.53)
Gentlemen's Doubles Winners £222,900 (US $448,405.23)
Ladies' Doubles Winners £222,900 (US $448,405.23)
Mixed Doubles Winners £90,000 (US $181,051.91) Wimbledon Championships Trophies and prize money
Among the four major titles, Wimbledon is the one that generates the most anxiety for the British. This is due to the fact that not only has no British player won a Wimbledon singles title since 1977, but no Brit has even been in the singles finals since then. Therefore, all the British (especially the English) usually will rally around a single countryman to bring back the glory. In the recent past, Tim Henman was the most prominent hope. However, since he is getting older and has yet to win a Slam, Andy Murray has become the next hope to rally around.

Main article: List of Wimbledon champions Champions

Wimbledon in popular culture

List of Wimbledon champions
Wimbledon Effect

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Viktor Maksimovich Zhirmunsky
Viktor Maksimovich Zhirmunsky (b. 2 August 1891 in Saint Petersburg, d. 31 January 1971 in Saint Petersburg), also Wiktor Maximowitsch Schirmunski, Zirmunskij, Schirmunski, Zhirmunskii, Russian: Ви́ктор Макси́мович Жирму́нский, was a Russian literary historian and linguist. He was a professor at universities in Saratov and Leningrad, and a member of the Russian Academy of Sciences.
He is a representative of Russian formal studies, though in certain respects he was less inclined to accept formalism as sufficient for all literary analysis. His critique of the ahistorical nature of formalism, in the introduction to his translation of Oskar Walzel's Die künstlerische Form des Dichtwerkes (1919) helped speed the end of Russian formalism's initial phase, as critics began to accommodate their work to the developing ideology of the Soviet regime.
Though originally trained in German Romanticism, he started to research the epos of the Asian people of the Soviet Union after he was settled in Tashkent following the evacuation of Leningrad. In particular, he studied the akyn of Kazakh and Kyrgyz culture This research created a foundation that allowed Meletinskij to make his considerations on the relations between myth and epos.
In April 1948, Zhirmunsky was among the scholars and critics who recanted their supposed "comparativism" and "Veselovskyism" in Andrei Zhdanov's purge of that year. "Comparativism," or the study of possible borrowing and dissemination of motifs and stories among cultures, was deprecated. In response, Zhirmunsky developed a historical-typological theory, according to which such similarities arose not from historical influence but rather from a similarity of social and cultural institutions.

Friday, August 24, 2007

William Collier
William Collier, Jr. (February 12, 1902February 5, 1987) was an American film and stage actor who appeared in 89 films.
Collier was born as Charles F. Gal, Jr. in New York City. When his parents divorced, his mother married actor, William Collier, Sr., who adopted Charles and gave the boy the new name William Collier Jr. (he was nicknamed "Buster").
Collier's stage experience helped him to get his first movie role in 1916, The Bugle Call, at the age of 14. Collier became a popular leading man. Collier's career spanned past his childhood and the advent of the sound film. In 1935, Collier retired. He died in San Francisco, California. Collier received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Metric system
The metric system is a decimalised system of measurement based on the metre and the gram. It exists in several variations, with different choices of base units, though these do not affect its day-to-day use. Over the last two centuries, different variants have been considered the metric system. Since the 1960s the International System of Units (SI) ("Système International d'Unités" in French, hence "SI") has been the internationally recognised standard metric system. Metric units of mass, length, and electricity are widely used around the world for both everyday and scientific purposes. A standard set of prefixes in multiples of 10 may be used to derive larger and smaller units. However, the prefixes for multiples of 1000 are the most commonly used.

In 1586, the Dutch mathematician Simon Stevin published a small pamphlet called De Thiende ('the tenth'). Decimal fractions had been employed for the extraction of square roots some five centuries before his time, but nobody established their daily use before Stevin. He felt that this innovation was so significant that he declared the universal introduction of decimal coinage, measures and weights to be merely a question of time.
The idea of a metric system has been attributed to John Wilkins, first secretary of the Royal Society in 1668. It was also reinstated in 1820 by a somewhat unlikely person, King William I of the (United) Netherlands. Although he was generally considered more conservative, he was desperate to bring at least some form of unity to his rather disunited kingdom. His attempts were vain in that Belgium claimed its independence from the Netherlands, but the metric system survived and began a slow but steady conquest of the world. By the 1960s, the majority of nations were on the metric system and most that were not had started programmes to fully convert to the metric system (metrication). As of 2005 only three countries, the United States, Liberia, and Myanmar (Burma) had not mandated the metric system upon their populace.
Later improvements in the measurement of both the size of the Earth and the properties of water revealed discrepancies between the metric standards and their originally intended values. The Industrial Revolution was well under way and the standardisation of mechanical parts, mainly bolts and nuts, was of great importance and they relied on precise measurements. Though these discrepancies would be mostly hidden in the manufacturing tolerances of those days, changing the prototypes to conform to the new and more precise measurements would have been impractical particularly since new and improved instruments would continually change them.
It was decided to break the linkage between the prototypes and the natural properties they were derived from. The prototypes then became the basis of the system. The use of prototypes, however, is problematic for a number of reasons. There is the potential for loss, damage or destruction. There is also the problem of variance of the standard with the changes that any artifact can be expected to go through, though they be slight. Also whilst there may be copies, there must be only one official prototype which cannot be universally accessible.
The metre had been defined in terms of such a prototype and remained so until 1960. At that time, the metre was defined as a certain number of wavelengths of a particular frequency of light emitted by a certain element. Since 1983 the metre has been defined as the distance light travels in a given fraction of a second in a vacuum. Thus the definition of the metre ultimately regained a linkage with a natural property, this time a property thought immutable in our universe and truly universal. The kilogram is now the only base unit still defined in terms of a prototype. Since 1899, the kilogram has been formally anchored to a single platinum-iridium cylinder in Sèvres, France.
On May 20, 1875 an international treaty known as the Convention du Mètre (Metre Convention) was signed by 17 states. This treaty established the following organisations to conduct international activities relating to a uniform system for measurements:
The metric system is used widely for scientific purposes but there are some exceptions, especially at large and small scales, such as the parsec. It has been adopted for everyday life by most nations through a process called metrication. As of 2006, 95% of the world's population live in metricated countries, although non-metric units are still used for some purposes in some countries. The holdouts to full metrication are the United States and, to a lesser degree, the United Kingdom, where there is public attachment to the traditional units.

Conférence générale des poids et mesures (CGPM), an intergovernmental conference of official delegates of member nations and the supreme authority for all actions;
Comité international des poids et mesures (CIPM), consisting of selected scientists and metrologists, which prepares and executes the decisions of the CGPM and is responsible for the supervision of the International Bureau of Weights and Measures;
Bureau international des poids et mesures (BIPM), a permanent laboratory and world centre of scientific metrology, the activities of which include the establishment of the basic standards and scales of the principal physical quantities and maintenance of the international prototype standards. History
The metric system was designed with several goals in mind.

The designers of the metric system meant to make it as neutral as possible so that it could be adopted universally.

Metric system Neutral and universal
The usual way to establish a standard was to make prototypes of the base units and distribute copies. This would make the new standard reliant on the original prototypes which would be in conflict with the previous goal since all countries would have to refer to the one holding the prototypes.
The designers developed definitions of the base units such that any laboratory equipped with proper instruments should be able to make their own models of them. The original base units of the metric system could be derived from the length of a meridian of the Earth and the weight of a certain volume of pure water. They discarded the use of a pendulum since its period or, inversely, the length of the string holding the bob for the same period changes around the Earth. Likewise, they discarded using the circumference of the Earth over the Equator since not all countries have access to the Equator while all countries have access to a section of a meridian.

The metric system is decimal, in the sense that all multiples and submultiples of the base units are factors of powers of ten of the unit. Fractions of a unit (e.g. 29/64) are not used formally. The practical benefits of a decimal system are such that it has been used to replace other non-decimal systems outside the metric system of measurements; for example currencies.
The simplicity of decimal prefixes encouraged the adoption of the metric system. Clearly the advantages of decimal prefixes derive from our using base 10 arithmetic, a consequence of our happening to have 10 digits (fingers and thumbs). At most, differences in expressing results are simply a matter of shifting the decimal point or changing an exponent; for example, the speed of light may be expressed as 299 792.458 km/s or 2.99792458×10 m/s.

Decimal multiples

Main article: SI prefix Common prefixes
Originally, units for volume and mass were directly related to each, with mass defined in terms of a volume of water. Even though that definition is no longer used, the relation is quite close at room temperature and nearly exact at 4 degrees C. So as a practical matter, one can fill a container with water and weigh it to get the volume, for example.

Relation of volume and mass of water
The base units were chosen to be of similar magnitude to customary units. The metre, being close to half a toise (French yard equivalent), became more popular than the failed decimal hour of the Republican Calendar which was 2.4 times the normal hour.
The kilometre was originally defined as the length of an arc spanning a decimal minute of latitude, a similar definition to that of the nautical mile which was the length of an arc of one (non-decimal) minute of latitude.

Two important values, when they were expressed in the metric system, turned out to be very close to a multiple of 10. The standard acceleration due to gravity on Earth gn has been defined to be 9.80665 m/s² exactly, which is the value at about 45° north or south of the equator. Accordingly the force exerted on a mass of one kilogram in Earth gravity (F = m·a) is about ten newtons (kg-m/s²). This simplified the metrication of many machines such as locomotives, which were simply re-labeled from e.g. "85 tonnes" to "850 kN". A closer approximation is π² m/s², which means a one-metre pendulum has a period of almost exactly two seconds.
Also, the standard atmospheric pressure, previously expressed in atmospheres, when given in pascals, is 101.325 kPa. Since the difference between 10 atmospheres and 1 MPa is only 1.3%, many devices were simply re-labeled by dividing the scale by ten, e.g. 1 atm was changed to 0.1 MPa.
In addition, the speed of light in a vacuum turns out to be astonishingly close (0.07% error) to 3×10

Coincidental similarities to real-life values

Metric systems
The metric system, and metre was first fully described by Englishman John Wilkins in 1668 in a treatise presented to the Royal Society some 120 years before the French adopted the system. It is believed that the system was transmitted to France from England via the likes of Benjamin Franklin (who spent a great deal of time in London), and produced the by-product of the decimalised paper currency system, before finding favour with American revolutionary ally Louis XV. This also serves as the prototype in the SI. It included only few prefixes from milli, one thousandth to myria ten thousand.
Several national variants existed thereof with aliases for some common subdivisions. In general this entailed a redefinition of other units in use, e.g. 500-gram pounds or 10-kilometre miles or leagues. An example of these is mesures usuelles. However it is debatable whether such systems are true metric systems.

Original system
Early on in the history of the metric system various centimetre gram second systems of units (CGS) had been in use. These units were particularly convenient in science and technology.

Centimetre-gram-second systems
Later metric systems were based on the metre, kilogram and second (MKS) to improve the value of the units for practical applications. Metre-kilogram-second-coulomb (MKSC) and metre-kilogram-second-ampere (MKSA) systems are extensions of these.
The International System of Units (Système international d'unités or SI) is the current international standard metric system and the system most widely used around the world. It is based on the metre, kilogram, second, ampere, kelvin, candela and mole.

Gravitational systems
Several nations, notably the United States, use the spellings meter, liter, etc. instead of metre, litre, in keeping with standard American English spelling (see also American and British English differences). This also corresponds to the official spelling used in many other languages, such as German, Dutch, Swedish, etc. In addition, the official U.S. spelling for the SI prefix deca is deka, though it is rarely used. The spelling tonne is common outside American English, where metric ton is the normal usage.
The U.S. government has approved these spellings for official use. In scientific contexts only the symbols are used; since these are universally the same, the differences do not arise in practice in scientific use.
Gram is also sometimes spelled gramme in English-speaking countries other than the United States, though it is an older spelling and its usage is declining.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The Baltimore Orioles are a Major League Baseball team based in Baltimore, Maryland. They are in the Eastern Division of the American League. They are owned by attorney Peter Angelos.

American League (1901–present)

  • East Division (1969–present)
    Baltimore Orioles (1954–present)
    St. Louis Browns (1902-1953)
    Milwaukee Brewers (1901)
    The O's, The Birds
    Oriole Park at Camden Yards (1992–present)
    Memorial Stadium (1954-1991)
    Sportsman's Park (III) (St. Louis) (1902-1953)

    • a.k.a Busch Stadium (I) (1953)
      Lloyd Street Grounds (Milwaukee) (1901) Milwaukee Brewers
      In 1902, however, the team did move to St. Louis, where it became the "Browns", in reference to the original name of the legendary 1880s club that by 1902 was known as the Cardinals. In their first St. Louis season, the Browns finished second. Although the Browns usually fielded terrible or mediocre teams (they had only four winning seasons from 1901 to 1922), they were very popular at the gate.
      During this time, the Browns were best-known for their role in the race for the 1910 American League batting title. Ty Cobb took the last game of the season off, believing that his slight lead over Nap Lajoie would hold up unless Lajoie had a near-perfect day at the plate. However, Cobb was one of the most despised players in baseball, and Browns catcher-manager Jack O'Connor ordered third baseman Red Corriden to station himself in shallow left field. Lajoie bunted five straight times down the third base line and made it to first easily. On his last at-bat, Lajoie reached base on an error--officially giving him a hitless at-bat. O'Connor and coach Harry Howell tried to bribe the official scorer, a woman, to change the call to a hit--even offering to buy her a new wardrobe. Cobb won the batting title by just a few thousandths of a point over Lajoie (though it later emerged that one game may have been counted twice in the statistics). The resulting outcry triggered an investigation by American League president Ban Johnson. At his insistence, Browns owner Robert Lee Hedges[1] fired O'Connor and Howell; both men were informally banned from baseball for life.
      In 1916, Hedges sold the Browns to Philip DeCatesby Ball, who owned the St. Louis Terriers in the by-then-defunct Federal League.
      The 1922 Browns excited their owner by almost beating the Yankees to a pennant. The club was boasting the best players in franchise history, including future Hall of Famer George Sisler, and an outfield trio - Ken Williams, Baby Doll Jacobson, and Jack Tobin - that batted .300 or better in 1919-23 and in 1925. In 1922, Williams became the first player in Major League history to hit 30 home runs and steal 30 bases in a season, something that would not be done again in the Majors until 1956.
      Ball confidently predicted that there would be a World Series in Sportsman's Park by 1926. In anticipation, he increased the capacity of his ballpark from 18,000 to 30,000. There was a World Series in Sportsman's Park in 1926 - the Cardinals upset the Yankees. St. Louis had been considered a "Browns' town" until then; after 1926 the Cardinals dominated St. Louis baseball, while still technically tenants of the Browns. Meanwhile, the Browns rapidly fell into the cellar. As well as winning the World Series, St. Louis evolved to a "Cardinals'" town.

      St. Louis Browns
      In 1940, the St. Louis Browns asked AL owners for permission to move to Los Angeles, but were turned down. They planned another move for the 1942 season, and this time got permission from the league. A schedule was even drawn up including Los Angeles, but the bombing of Pearl Harbor in December 1941 made major-league sports of any sort on the West Coast unviable. During the war, the Browns won their only St. Louis-based American League pennant in 1944. Some critics called it a fluke; most major league stars voluntarily joined or were drafted into the military; however, many of the Browns' best players were classified 4-F: unfit for military service. They faced their local rivals, the more successful Cardinals, in the 1944 World Series, the last World Series to date played entirely in one stadium, and lost 4 games to 2.
      In 1945, the Browns posted an 81-75 record and fell to third place, 6 games out, again with less than top-ranked talent. The 1945 season may be best remembered for the Browns' signing of utility outfielder Pete Gray, the only one-armed major league position player in history.

      War Era
      In 1951, Bill Veeck, the former owner of the Cleveland Indians purchased the Browns. In St. Louis he extended the promotions and wild antics that had made him famous and loved by many and loathed by many others. His most notorious stunt in St. Louis was to send Eddie Gaedel, a 3 foot 7 inch, 65-pound midget, to bat as a pinch hitter. When Gaedel stepped to the plate he was wearing a Browns uniform with the number 1/8, and little slippers turned up at the end like elf's shoes. With no strike zone to speak of, Gaedel walked on four straight pitches. The stunt infuriated American League President Will Harridge, who voided Gaedel's contract the next day.
      After the 1951 season, Veeck make Ned Garver the highest paid member of the Browns. Garver remains the last pitcher to win 20 games for a team that lost 100 games in a season. He was the second pitcher in history to accomplish that feat.
      Veeck also brought the legendary, and seemingly ageless, Satchel Paige back to major league baseball to pitch for the Browns. Veeck had previously signed the former Negro League great to a contract in Cleveland in 1948 at age 42, amid much criticism. At 45, Paige's re-appearance in a Brown's uniform did nothing to win Veeck friends among baseball's owners. Nonetheless, Paige ended the season with a respectable 3-4 record and a 4.79 ERA.
      Veeck believed that St. Louis was too small for two franchises and planned to drive the Cardinals out of town. He signed many of the Cardinals' most locally loved ex-players and, as a result, brought many of the Cards fans in to see the Browns. Veeck signed former Cardinals great Dizzy Dean to a broadcasting contract and tapped Rogers Hornsby as manager. He also re-acquired former Browns fan favorite Vern Stephens and signed former Cardinals pitcher Harry Brecheen, both of whom had starred in the all-St. Louis World Series in 1944. He stripped Sportsman's Park of any Cardinals material and dressed it exclusively in Browns memorabilia. He even moved his family to an apartment under the stands. Veeck's showmanship and colorful promotions made attendance at Browns games more fun and unpredictable than the conservative Cardinals were willing to offer.
      Veeck attempted to move the Browns back to Milwaukee (where he had owned the Brewers of the American Association in the 1940s), but the move was blocked by the other American League owners, seemingly for reasons that were more personal than business related.
      Veeck then tried to move the Browns to Baltimore himself. However, he was rebuffed by the owners, still seething by the publicity stunts he pulled at the Browns home games. Meanwhile, Sportsman's Park had fallen into disrepair. Veeck was forced to sell it to the Cardinals since he couldn't afford to make the necessary improvements to bring it up to code. With his only leverage gone and facing threats of liquidating his franchise, Veeck was all but forced to sell the Browns to a Baltimore-based group led by attorney Clarence Miles and brewer Jerry Hofberger. With Veeck "out of the way", the American League owners quickly approved the relocation of the team to Baltimore for the 1954 season.

      Bill Veeck's St. Louis Browns
      Unlike other clubs that transferred in the 1950s, retaining their nickname and a sense of continuity with their past (such as the Brooklyn-Los Angeles Dodgers and New York-San Francisco Giants), the St. Louis Browns were renamed upon their transfer, implicitly distancing themselves at least somewhat from their history. In December 1954, the Orioles further distanced themselves from their Browns past by making a 17-player trade with the New York Yankees that included most former Browns of note still on the Baltimore roster. Though the deal did little to improve the short-term competitiveness of the club, it helped establish a fresh identity for the Oriole franchise.
      The Browns, along with the Washington Senators, were mostly associated with losing. The Senators became the butt of a well-known Vaudeville joke, "First in war, first in peace, and last in the American League," a twist on the famous "Light Horse Harry" Lee eulogy of George Washington: "First in war, first in peace and first in the hearts of his countrymen". A spinoff phrasing was invented for the St. Louis Browns: "First in shoes, first in booze, and last in the American League.")
      Many older fans in St. Louis remember the Browns fondly, and some have formed societies to keep the memory of the team alive. The club was in St. Louis for 52 years. As of the 2006 season, the club had been in Baltimore longer than they were in St. Louis.
      Believed to be the oldest former major leaguer, the Browns' Rollie Stiles died July 22, 2007 in St. Louis County.

      Baltimore Orioles Legacy
      Soon after taking over, the Miles-Hofberger group renamed their new team the Baltimore Orioles. The name has a rich history in Baltimore, having been used by Baltimore baseball teams since the late 19th century.
      In the 1890s, a powerful and innovative National League Orioles squad included several future Hall of Famers, such as "Wee" Willie Keeler, Wilbert Robinson, Hughie Jennings and John McGraw. They won three straight pennants, and participated in all four of the Temple Cup Championship Series, winning the last two of them. That team had started as a charter member of the American Association in 1882. Despite its on-field success, it was one of the four teams contracted out of existence by the National League after the 1899 season. Its best players (and its manager, Ned Hanlon) regrouped with the Brooklyn Dodgers, turning that team into a contender.
      In 1901, Baltimore and McGraw were awarded an expansion franchise in the growing American League, but again the team was sacrificed in favor of a New York City franchise, as the team was transferred to the city in 1903. After some early struggles, that team eventually became baseball's most successful franchise - the New York Yankees.
      As a member of the high-minor league level International League, the Orioles competed at what is now known as the AAA level from 1903-1953. Baltimore's own George Herman Ruth - nicknamed "Babe" - pitched for the Orioles before being sold to the AL Boston Red Sox in 1914. The Orioles of the IL won nine league championships, first in 1908, followed by a lengthy run from 1919 to 1925, and then dramatically in 1944, after they had lost their home field Oriole Park in a disastrous mid-season fire. The huge post-season crowds at their temporary home, Municipal Stadium, caught the attention of the big league brass and helped open the door to the return of major league baseball to Baltimore. Thanks to the big stadium, that "Junior World Series" easily outdrew the major league World Series which, coincidentally, included the team that would move to Baltimore 10 years later and take up occupancy in the rebuilt version of that big stadium.

      Baltimore Orioles
      On April 15, 1954, thousands of Baltimoreans jammed city streets as the new Orioles paraded from downtown to their new home at Memorial Stadium. During the 90-minute parade, the new birds signed autographs, handed out pictures and threw styrofoam balls to crowd as the throng marched down 33rd street. Inside, more than 46,000 watched the Orioles beat the Chicago White Sox, 3-1, to win their home opener and move into first place in the American League.[2] Ironically, the Orioles lost their last home game of the season, 11-0, to the same White Sox, finishing with 100 losses and 57½ games out of first place. [3]
      The new AL Orioles took about six years to become competitive. By the early 1960s, stars such as Brooks Robinson, John "Boog" Powell, and Dave McNally were being developed by a strong farm system.

      Modern Orioles
      In 1966, the Orioles traded pitcher Milt Pappas (and several others) to the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for slugging outfielder Frank Robinson. That same year, Robinson won the American League Most Valuable Player award, thus becoming the first (and so far only) man to win the MVP in each league (Robinson won the NL MVP in 1961, leading the Reds to the pennant). In addition to winning the 1966 MVP, Robinson also won the Triple Crown (leading the American League in batting average, home runs, and runs batted in.) The Orioles won their first ever American League championship in 1966, and in a major upset, swept the World Series by out-dueling the Los Angeles Dodgers aces Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale.
      Pappas went 30-29 in a little over two years with the Reds, before being traded. Although he would go on to have back-to-back 17-win seasons for the Chicago Cubs in 1971 and 1972, including a no-hitter in the latter season, this did not help the Reds, who ended up losing the 1970 World Series to Robinson and the Orioles. This trade has become renowned as one of the most lopsided in baseball history, including a mention by Susan Sarandon in her opening soliloquy in the 1988 film Bull Durham: "Bad trades are a part of baseball. I mean, who can forget Frank Robinson for Milt Pappas?"

      Milt Pappas for Frank Robinson
      The Orioles farm system had begun to produce a number of high quality players and coaches who formed the core of winning teams; from 1966 to 1983, the Orioles won three World Series titles (1966, 1970, and 1983), six American League pennants (1966, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1979, 1983), and five of the first six American League Eastern Division titles. They played baseball the Oriole Way, an organizational ethic best described by longtime farm hand and coach Cal Ripken, Sr.'s phrase "perfect practice makes perfect!" The Oriole Way was a belief that hard work, professionalism, and a strong understanding of fundamentals were the keys to success at the major league level. It was based on the belief that if every coach, at every level, taught the game the same way, the organization could produce "replacement parts" that could be substituted seamlessly into the big league club with little or no adjustment. This led to an unprecedented run of success from 1966 to 1983 which saw the Orioles become the envy of the league, and the winningest team in baseball.
      During this stretch, three different Orioles were named Most Valuable Player (Frank Robinson-1966, Boog Powell-1970, Cal Ripken, Jr.-1983). The pitching staff was phenomenal with four pitchers winning six Cy Young Awards (Mike Cuellar-1969, Jim Palmer-1973, 1975, 1976, Mike Flanagan-1979, Steve Stone-1980), and in 1971 the Orioles produced four 20-game winners. Pat Dobson joined McNally, Cuellar, and Palmer as the Birds went on to post a 101-61 record for their 3rd straight AL East title.[4] Also during this stretch three players were named rookies of the year (Al Bumbry-1973, Eddie Murray-1977, Cal Ripken Jr.-1982).

      Glory Years (1966-1983)
      During this rise to prominence, Weaver Ball came into vogue. Named for fiery manager Earl Weaver, Weaver Ball is defined by the Oriole trifecta of "Pitching, Defense, and the Three-Run Home Run."
      When an Oriole GM was told by a reporter that Earl Weaver, as the skipper of a very talented team, was a "push-button manager" he replied "Earl built the machine and installed all the buttons!"
      As the Robinson boys grew older, newer stars emerged including multiple Cy Young Award winner Jim Palmer and switch-hitting first baseman Eddie Murray. With the decline and eventual departure of two local teams - the NFL's Baltimore Colts and baseball's Washington Senators, the Orioles' excellence paid off at the gate, as the team cultivated a large and rabid fan base at old Memorial Stadium.
      After winning the 1983 World Series, however, the Orioles suffered a gradual downturn in their on-field fortunes, culminating in the 1988 season, when the Orioles lost their first 21 games in a row to set a Major League record for most consecutive losses at the beginning of a season. The losing streak also cost then-manager Cal Ripken, Sr., his position, as he was fired after six games and replaced by Frank Robinson. After a 54-107 season in 1988, the "Why Not Orioles" then shocked the baseball world by finishing two games out of first place in 1989, a season in which they were not eliminated from the pennant race until the final weekend of the season.

      Weaver Ball
      In 1992, with grand ceremony, the Orioles began their season in a brand new ballpark, Oriole Park at Camden Yards, and thus retiring Memorial Stadium in the major league baseball world. The name of the new park though did have much controversy in it. Many felt that since the Orioles' new home was so close to Babe Ruth's birthplace that the new park should have been named after Ruth instead of being indirectly named after the Earl of Camden, Charles Pratt, who was a Britisher who never set foot on American soil. There was also the superficial connection to the fact that Ruth played for the Orioles early in his career, but the Orioles team that Ruth played for was in no way related to the Orioles team that moved to Baltimore from St. Louis.
      In 1993, Peter Angelos bought the Baltimore Orioles, which returned the team to local ownership. The Orioles also hosted the 1993 All Star Game.

      Oriole Park at Camden Yards
      In the season when baseball returned from the devastating players' strike, Cal Ripken, Jr. finally broke Lou Gehrig's consecutive games streak of 2,130 games. This was later voted the all-time baseball moment of the 20th Century by fans from around the country in 1999. Ripken would finish with 2,632 straight games, finally sitting on September 20, 1998 against the New York Yankees at Oriole Park at Camden Yards.

      1995: Ripken Breaks the Record
      Angelos hired Pat Gillick as GM for the Orioles in 1996. Gillick went on to bring in several premium players like B.J. Surhoff, Randy Myers, and Roberto Alomar. Under Gillick and manager Davey Johnson, the Orioles finally returned to postseason play by winning the American League's wild card spot in the 1996 season. The team set a major league record for home runs in a single season, with 257, and upset the Cleveland Indians in the Division Series before falling to the New York Yankees in a controversial American League Championship Series (famous for the fan, Jeffrey Maier, interfering with a ball and allowing the Yankees to win game 1). The Orioles followed up by winning the AL East Division title in 1997, going "wire-to-wire" (being in first place from the first day of the season to the last). After eliminating the Mariners in four games in the opening round, the team lost again in the ALCS, this time a heartbreaker to the underdog Indians, in which each Oriole loss was by 1 run. After the Orioles failed to advance to the World Series in either playoff, Johnson resigned as manager, with pitching coach Ray Miller taking his place.

      1998/1999: Beginning of a downturn
      In a rare event on March 28, 1999, the Orioles staged an exhibition game against the Cuban national team in Havana. The Orioles won the game 3-2 in 11 innings. They were the first Major League team to play in Cuba since 1959, when the Los Angeles Dodgers faced the Orioles in an exhibition. The game was part of a two-game series, where the Cuban team visited Baltimore in May of 1999. Cuba won the second game 10-6.

      Orioles Visit Cuba
      Going into the 2007 season, the Orioles have had nine consecutive sub-.500 seasons, due to the combination of lackluster play on the team's part and the ascent of the Yankees and Red Sox to the top of the game – each rival having a clear advantage in financial flexibility due to their larger media market size. Further complicating the situation for the Orioles is the relocation of the Montreal Expos franchise to nearby Washington, D.C.. The new Washington Nationals threaten to carve into the Orioles fan base and television dollars. There is some hope that having competition in the larger Baltimore-Washington metro market will spur the Orioles to field a better product to compete for fans with the Nationals.
      Beginning with the 2003 season, big changes began to sweep through the organization to try to snap the losing ways. General manager Syd Thrift was fired and to replace him, the Orioles hired Jim Beattie as the Executive Vice President and Mike Flanagan as the Vice President of Baseball Operations. After another losing season, manager Mike Hargrove was not retained and Yankees coach Lee Mazzilli was brought in as the new manager. The team signed powerful hitters in SS Miguel Tejada, C Javy Lopez, and former Oriole 1B Rafael Palmeiro. The following season, the Orioles traded for OF Sammy Sosa.
      The 2005 season may go down as one of the most controversial and strangest in the Orioles' history. The team got hot early and jumped out in front of the AL East division, holding onto first place for 62 straight days. However, turmoil on and off the field began to take its toll as the O's started struggling around the All-Star break, dropping them close to the surging Yankees and Red Sox. Injuries to Lopez, Sosa, Luis Matos, Brian Roberts, and Larry Bigbie came within weeks of each other, and the team grew increasingly dissatisfied with the "band-aid" moves of the front office and manager Mazzilli to help them through this period of struggle. Various minor league players such as Single-A Frederick OF Jeff Fiorentino were brought up in place of more experienced players such as OF David Newhan (son of a hall-of-fame baseball writer), who batted .311 the previous season and who started playing for the New York Mets in 2007.

      In March of 2005, Rafael Palmeiro testified in front of the United States Congress and clearly denied any allegations that he used steroids. On July 15, 2005, he collected his 3,000th hit in Seattle and became only the 4th person in Major League Basebell to amass 500 HR's and 3,000 hits (the others being Babe Ruth, Willie Mays, and Eddie Murray). But 15 days later he was suspended for a violation of MLB's drug policy, after testing positive for the anabolic steroid stanozolol. The Orioles continued tumbling, falling out of first place and further down the AL East standings. This downfall cost Mazzilli his managerial job in early August, allowing bench coach and 2003 managerial candidate Sam Perlozzo to take over as interim manager and lead the team to a 23-32 finish. The Orioles called up Dave Cash from the Ottawa Lynx to serve as the team's first base coach.

      Palmeiro downfall
      After starting the season winning at a .600 clip, the Orioles finished just 32-60. The club's major offseason acquisition, Sammy Sosa, posted his worst performance in a decade, with 14 home runs and a paltry .221 batting average. The Orioles did not attempt to re-sign him, considering his exorbitant salary and his miserable performance. The Orioles also allowed Palmeiro to file for free agency and publicly stated they would not resign him. On August 25, pitcher Sidney Ponson was arrested for DUI and on September 1 the Orioles moved to void his contract (on a morals clause) and released him. The Major League Baseball Players Association filed a grievance on Ponson's behalf and the case was sent to arbitration and has yet to be resolved.

      Collapse of the season

      2005-2006 offseason
      Following the disappointing 2005 season, it was clear major changes needed to be made within the Orioles. In the front office, Executive VP Jim Beattie was not re-signed, allowing Mike Flanagan to become the sole GM of the Orioles. Shortly after, Jim Duquette was hired as Vice President of Baseball Operations, which was Flanagan's previous position. Duquette made it clear at his signing that he reported to Flanagan, so the "two-headed GM" will not exist anymore. The Orioles also fired assistant General Manager Ed Kenney and asked for the resignation of Dave Ritterpusch, Director of Baseball Information Systems.

      Front office changes
      There were also drastic changes in the Orioles coaching staff. Perlozzo was named the new manager, and unlike Mazzilli, was given full freedom to name his coaching staff. Sam Perlozzo led off strong by convincing Atlanta pitching coach Leo Mazzone, who had revolutionized the careers of many pitchers in Atlanta, to become the pitching coach for the Orioles. He retained hitting coach Terry Crowley and first base coach Dave Cash. Former base coach and 1983 World Series MVP Rick Dempsey replaced the late Elrod Hendricks as the bullpen coach, with Tom Trebelhorn resuming third base coach. Perlozzo rounded out his staff with former Cubs and Phillies manager Lee Elia as the bench coach.
      On June 18, 2007, Perlozzo was fired as Orioles manager after losing its eighth consecutive game to put them at 29-40, last in the American League East, 15.5 games back of the Boston Red Sox. He will be replaced in the interim by bullpen coach Dave Trembley.

      Coaching staff changes
      The roster changes of 2005 were prefaced with Peter Angelos' comments: "We are coming back strong next year. I know you have heard that tune before, but this time it will literally come true." The Orioles allowed Rafael Palmeiro, Sammy Sosa, and B.J. Surhoff to become free agents. They also set their wishlist: An everyday first baseman, an experienced starter, a closer, a defensive catcher, outfield help, more defense, and more speed. However, their offseason moves showed no differences from past years. The Orioles were not able to re-sign closer B.J. Ryan, who signed a landmark deal with the Toronto Blue Jays. They were also locked out in bids to sign first baseman Paul Konerko, outfielder Johnny Damon, and starter Paul Byrd. The Orioles chose not to enter the bidding for players like A.J. Burnett and Kevin Millwood, whose asking prices were far beyond what the Orioles were willing to pay, but they did sign catcher Ramon Hernandez.
      Locked out of pursuits to sign top-tier players, the Orioles decided to make several moves to allow minor league prospects more time to develop. This led to bringing in players like Jeff Conine and Kevin Millar, both of whom are known for their positive presence in the clubhouse. The Orioles also made several trades to bring in needed players. They first traded disgruntled reliever Steve Kline for LaTroy Hawkins, then traded for outfielder Corey Patterson, who brought speed and defense to the outfield, and traded former closer Jorge Julio and John Maine for experienced starter Kris Benson. The Orioles also addressed future free agents by extending the contract of outfielder Jay Gibbons and third baseman Melvin Mora, and recently signed a contract extension with second baseman Brian Roberts. The team's Opening Day roster featured top prospect Nick Markakis, a potential A.L. "Rookie of the Year", the best young position player the Orioles' farm system has produced since Brian Roberts. Markakis represents the revival of the Orioles' farm system, which features four players listed in Baseball America's 2006 list of the top 100 prospects in minor league baseball.

      Roster changes
      For the 2006 season, the Orioles finished the up and down 2006 season with a record of 70 wins and 92 losses, 27 games behind the AL East leading Yankees.

      2006 Season
      On June 18, the Orioles fired Sam Perlozzo after losing 8 straight games. He has since been replaced on interim basis by Dave Trembley. On June 22, Miguel Tejada's consecutive-games streak came to an end due to an injury. This is the 5th longest such streak in major league history. A minor highlight came on June 29th against the Angels. Aubrey Huff recorded his 1000th hit, 200th double, and became the first Oriole to hit for the cycle at home. He joins Brooks Robinson (1960) and Cal Ripken (1984) as the third Oriole to hit for the cycle in team history. Ironicaly the Orioles ended up losing the game. On July 7, Erik Bedard struck out 15 batters in a game against the Texas Rangers tying a franchise record held by Mike Mussina. On July 31, 2007, Andy Mcphail, Vice President of Baseball Operations named Dave Trembley as the Orioles Manager through the remainder of the 2007 season.

      2007 Season
      Since its introduction at games by the "Roar from 34" led by Wild Bill Hagy et al in the late 1970s, it has been a tradition at Orioles games for fans to accent the line of "Oh, say does that Star-Spangled Banner yet wave" in the "The Star-Spangled Banner" by yelling "O!" "O" is not only short for "Oriole," but the vowel is also a stand-out aspect of the Baltimorean accent. This tradition is even carried out during the Orioles' spring training home games in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. This tradition carries on to this day, although not with the zest of years gone by. Sentiment for this tradition has dwindled partly due to supposed patriotic concerns, and also because the Orioles' results are less a source of hometown pride than they were when the tradition was started in the 1970s.
      The tradition is sometimes, but rarely, carried out at other sporting events, both professional and not, and sometimes at non-sporting events where the anthem is played, throughout the Baltimore/Washington area and all over Maryland, notably at Baltimore Ravens and Maryland Terrapins games. Even fans in Norfolk, VA chant "O!" even before the Tides became an Orioles affiliate. "The Star-Spangled Banner" has also been shouted over during Washington Redskins and Washington Capitals home games. It caught some attention in the spring of 2005, when some fans performed the "O!" cry at Washington Nationals games at RFK Stadium. Many Washingtonians are Orioles fans, as the Orioles were the closest team to Washington between the Texas Rangers' departure and before the Montreal Expos' relocation. At Cal Ripken, Jr.'s induction into the National Baseball Hall of Fame, the crowd of over 70,000 fans, most of them from Baltimore, carried out the "O!" tradition during Tony Gwynn's daugher's rendition of The Star-Spangled Banner.
      "The Star-Spangled Banner" has special meaning to Baltimore historically, as it was written during the Battle of Baltimore in the War of 1812. As a patriotic song, it signifies American freedoms; including, presumably, the freedom to shout "O!"

      It has been an Orioles tradition since 1975 to play John Denver's "Thank God I'm a Country Boy" during the seventh inning stretch.
      In the July 5th, 2007 edition of Baltimore's weekly sports publication Press Box, an article by Mike Gibbons covered the details of how this tradition came to be. [5]
      The following text in italics is an excerpt from the article cited above:
      In the summer of '74, Denver performed the song live at the Universal Amphitheatre in Los Angeles as part of a set that was recorded and released in 1975 as the two-record album, "An Evening With John Denver." Fans liked the live version of "Country Boy" enough that the song was released as a single that February. By June it reached No. 1 on the charts where it stayed for the next 22 weeks.
      Coincidently, 1975 was the year the Orioles, at the suggestion of general manager Frank Cashen, began playing pop music to reach out to younger fans. Throughout the '50s, '60s and early '70s the Orioles played "old folks" and organ music, and Cashen felt it was time for a change. So that season, public relations director Bob Brown began playing pop tunes during the seventh-inning stretch to see if anything would "take."
      Late that season, shortstop Mark Belanger and his wife, Dee, went to Brown and suggested he try "Country Boy." The Belangers were fans and friends of Denver; they felt the song might catch on.
      And catch on it did. Fans seemed to like its peppy, toe-tapping attitude, and so did the players. Orioles' current general manager Mike Flanagan, a Cy Young Award winner for Baltimore in 1979, said his teammates liked the song because it served as a daily wakeup call. It reminded them that if they were down, they still had nine outs and plenty of time to come back.
      Flanagan remembered the song as inspirational. "The guys felt like, 'We can do this,' and a lot of times we did," he said.
      The fans seemed to sense their team was responding to "Country Boy" as well, and that added to its allure, enough to make it a resident seventh-inning stretch fixture at Orioles games from then on. On several occasions, the Orioles felt their fans might be growing tired of their popular foot-stomper, and suggested changing it. On Opening Day in 1980, they played "Oriole Magic," a popular jingle the team had produced during the '79 campaign.
      "We got booed; I mean we really got booed," Brown said. "People had been waiting all winter to hear their 'Country Boy.' It was very humbling."
      In 1994, the team offered baseball's anthem, "Take Me Out to the Ballgame," only to generate a similarly negative response. Today, the team plays "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" as a warmup to "Country Boy," and the fans seem accepting.

      "Thank God I'm a Country Boy"
      Other musical traditions include taking the field to the song "Oriole Magic," playing a sample from The Wizard of Oz of soldiers chanting "Oh-wee-oh! We-oh-oh," playing Yello's "O Yeah" after a good play by the Orioles, playing "Get Back" from The Beatles when an opposing batter has to return to the batter's box after he headed to first base on a ball that went foul, and playing "Hit the Road Jack" after when an opposing pitcher leaves. In addition after clutch hits or plays, Zombie Nations Kernkraft 400 (Oh Oh Oh Remix) will play with its refrain as a series of "Oh"'s, fans will mix "O's" into this refrain as well.
      Some songs from special events include "One Moment in Time" for Cal Ripken's record-breaking game. For his last game, the theme from Pearl Harbor, "There You'll Be" by Faith Hill, was featured. The theme from Field of Dreams was played at the Last Game at Memorial Stadium in 1991, and the song "Magic to Do" from the stage musical Pippin was used that season to commemorate "Orioles Magic" on 33rd street.
      During the 2006 season, the song "Elevation," by U2, was played following a home run.

      Other Music
      In the 2006 World Baseball Classic, the Orioles contributed more players than any other major league team, with eleven players suiting up for their home nations. Erik Bedard and Adam Loewen pitched for Canada; Rodrigo López and Geronimo Gil (released before the season began by the club) played for Mexico; Daniel Cabrera and Miguel Tejada for the Dominican Republic; Javy Lopez and Luis Matos for Puerto Rico; Bruce Chen for Panama; Ramon Hernandez for Venezuela; and John Stephens for Australia.

      World Baseball Classic
      Founded: 1893, as the Milwaukee, Wisconsin franchise in the minor Western League. In 1900, that league became the American League, which achieved major league status in 1901. The original Baltimore Orioles of the American League moved to become the New York Yankees.
      Formerly known as: Milwaukee Brewers, 1894-1901. St. Louis Browns, 1902-1953.
      Home ballpark: Oriole Park at Camden Yards 1992-present
      Prior home parks: Memorial Stadium (Baltimore) 1954-1991, Sportsman's Park (St. Louis)
      Uniform colors: Black and Orange
      Logo design: An oriole bird; the Baltimore Oriole is the official Maryland state bird
      Playoff appearances (11): 1944, 1966, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1973, 1974, 1979, 1983, 1996, 1997
      Spring Training Facility: Fort Lauderdale Stadium, Fort Lauderdale, FL

      Quick facts
      Orioles games are broadcast on a 20-station radio network in Maryland and nearby states, anchored by flagship station WHFS-FM (105.7 MHz). Fred Manfra, and Joe Angel alternate radio announcing duties.
      As part of the settlement of a television broadcast rights dispute with Comcast SportsNet over the Washington Nationals, the Orioles severed their Comcast ties at the end of the 2006 season. All Orioles' games are now televised on the Orioles-controlled Mid-Atlantic Sports Network (MASN), with some games also airing locally on WJZ-TV (ch. 13). Longtime sportscaster Gary Thorne, who is also recognized for his work as a hockey announcer, is the current television announcer for the Orioles, Hall of Fame former Orioles pitcher Jim Palmer, and former major leaguer Buck Martinez. Some MASN telecasts in conflict with Washington Nationals' game telecasts air on an alternate MASN2 feed.
      Three former Oriole radio announcers have received the Hall of Fame's Ford C. Frick Award for excellence in broadcasting: Chuck Thompson (who was also the voice of the old NFL Baltimore Colts), Ernie Harwell, and Herb Carneal. Other former announcers include ESPN's Jon Miller, FOX's Josh Lewin, the late Bill O'Donnell, and Baltimore radio veteran Tom Marr, who called the games during the "Oriole Magic" years on the old WFBR-AM (now WJFK-AM). In 1991, the Orioles experimented with longtime TV writer/producer Ken Levine as a play-by-play broadcaster. Levine was best noted for his work on TV shows such as Cheers and M*A*S*H, but only lasted one season in the Orioles broadcast booth.
      Other previous flagship radio stations include the now-defunct WFBR (1300 kHz AM) and a brief period with WCBM (680 kHz AM) for the 1987 season.
      Former Oriole television broadcasters include: Thompson, Miller, former Baltimore Ravens broadcaster Scott Garceau, longtime versitile sportscaster Mel Proctor, former Cleveland Cavaliers broadcaster Michael Reghi, as well as former Oriole players including Hall of Fame third baseman Brooks Robinson, former pitcher Mike Flanagan, and former outfielder John Lowenstein (dubbed by ESPN's Chris Berman as John "Tonight Let It Be" Lowenstein).
      Previous Baltimore television flagship stations have included: WMAR-TV (Channel 2) and WNUV-TV (Channel 54), as well as regional cable network Home Team Sports (HTS) which eventually evolved into Comcast SportsNet.

      List of Baltimore Orioles Announcers Radio and television
      For 23 years, Rex Barney was the public-address announcer for the team. He became a symbol of the team and his expressions, "Give that fan a contract" became famous every time a fan caught a foul ball at the game and his exaggeration of Thank You which he spoke as "Thank Yooooou" over the PA system. In addition to "Give that fan a contract", he would occasionally announce "Give that fan an error" for a foul ball that was dropped. He died during the 1997 season, on August 12; in his honor, that night's game at Camden Yards was held without a public-address announcer.[6]

      Rex Barney
      Of the eight original American League teams, this franchise had once had the sparsest post-season record, and was the last of the eight to win the World Series, doing so in 1966 with its four-game sweep of the heavily favored Los Angeles Dodgers. When the Orioles were the St. Louis Browns, they played in only one World Series, the 1944 matchup against their Sportsman's Park tenants, the Cardinals. The 1966 season was the start of an era of some great Orioles teams, during which they were a frequent contender, including winning the 1966, 1970, and 1983 World Series.

      Post-season appearances

      Baseball Hall of Famers

      Hugh Duffy Milwaukee Brewers
      The following members of the Baseball Hall of Fame were property of the St. Louis Browns and assigned to the team's major league roster, but never appeared in a regulation game:

      Jim Bottomley
      Willard Brown
      Jesse Burkett
      Dizzy Dean
      Rick Ferrell
      Goose Goslin
      Rogers Hornsby
      Heinie Manush
      Satchel Paige
      Eddie Plank
      Branch Rickey
      George Sisler
      Bill Veeck
      Rube Waddell
      Bobby Wallace
      Tommy Lasorda
      Christy Mathewson [7] St. Louis Browns

      Luis Aparicio
      Reggie Jackson
      George Kell
      Eddie Murray
      Jim Palmer
      Cal Ripken, Jr.
      Robin Roberts
      Brooks Robinson
      Frank Robinson
      Earl Weaver
      Hoyt Wilhelm Baltimore Orioles
      Note: Cal Ripken Sr.'s number 7 has not been retired, but a moratorium has been placed on it and it has not been issued by the team since his death.Baltimore Orioles Jackie Robinson's number 42 is retired throughout Major League Baseball

      Retired numbers
      † 15-day disabled list Roster updated 2007-08-10 TransactionsDepth Chart
      Designated hitters
      60-day disabled list
      Suspended list

      45 Flag of Canada Erik Bedard
      56 Flag of the United States Brian Burres
      35 Flag of Dominican Republic Daniel Cabrera
      46 Flag of the United States Jeremy Guthrie
      41 Flag of the United States Steve Trachsel
      28 Flag of Cuba Danys Báez (CL)
      30 Flag of the United States Rob Bell
      53 Flag of the United States Chad Bradford
      39 Flag of the United States Jim Hoey
      57 Flag of the United States Garrett Olson
      23 Flag of the United States Paul Shuey
      32 Flag of the United States Jamie Walker
       9 Flag of the United States Paul Bako
      55 Flag of Venezuela Ramón Hernández
      12 Flag of the United States Brandon Fahey
      19 Flag of the United States Aubrey Huff
      15 Flag of the United States Kevin Millar
       6 Flag of Venezuela Melvin Mora
       1 Flag of the United States Brian Roberts
      10 Flag of Dominican Republic Miguel Tejada
      31 Flag of the United States Jay Gibbons
      21 Flag of the United States Nick Markakis
      17 Flag of the United States Corey Patterson
      16 Flag of the United States Jay Payton
      13 Flag of the United States Tike Redman
      None specified
      25 Flag of the United States Kurt Birkins
      52 Flag of the United States Cory Doyne
      59 Flag of the United States Jim Johnson
      49 Flag of the United States Hayden Penn
      37 Flag of the United States Chris Ray (CL)
      43 Flag of Dominican Republic Sendy Rleal
      -- Flag of Venezuela Gustavo Molina
       2 Flag of Venezuela Luis Hernández
      58 Flag of Venezuela Eider Torres
       3 Flag of the United States Freddie Bynum
      39 Flag of the United States Jeff Fiorentino
      39 Flag of the United States Jon Knott
      63 Flag of the United States Val Majewski
      40 Flag of Canada Adam Stern
      47 Flag of the United States Dave Trembley
      48 Flag of the United States Terry Crowley (hitting)
      40 Flag of the United States Bruce Kison (bullpen)
      54 Flag of the United States Leo Mazzone (pitching)
      50 Flag of Dominican Republic Sam Mejías (first base)
      11 Flag of Dominican Republic Juan Samuel (third base)
      26 Flag of the United States Tom Trebelhorn (bench)
      34 Flag of the United States Kris Benson
      29 Flag of Canada Adam Loewen
      27 Flag of the United States Jaret Wright
      Currently vacant Current roster
      Former teams: (stub)

      AAA: Norfolk Tides, International League
      AA: Bowie Baysox, Eastern League
      Advanced A: Frederick Keys, Carolina League
      A: Delmarva Shorebirds, South Atlantic League
      Short A: Aberdeen IronBirds, New York-Penn League
      Rookie: Bluefield Orioles, Appalachian League
      Rookie: VSL Orioles, Venezuelan Summer League Baltimore Orioles Players Nicknames

      Orioles statistical records and milestone achievements
      List of Baltimore Orioles broadcasters
      Managers and ownership of the Baltimore Orioles
      NL Wildcard winners (since 1994)