Think You’re Smarter Than Slate’s Energy Columnist? Find Out With This Week’s News Quiz.

Test your knowledge of the week’s news.
July 17 2014 11:44 PM

Play the Slate News Quiz

With Jeopardy! superchampion Ken Jennings.

Contestant Ken Jennings attends a press conference to discuss the upcoming Man V. Machine 'Jeopardy!'.
Contestant Ken Jennings attends a press conference to discuss the upcoming Man V. Machine 'Jeopardy!' competition at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center in 2011 in Yorktown Heights, New York.

Photo by Ben Hider/Getty Images.

Welcome back to Slate’s weekly news quiz. I’m your host, 74-time Jeopardy! winner Ken Jennings.

Every Friday I’ll be testing your knowledge with 12 challenging questions on the week’s news events, big and small, including happenings in science, sports, politics, and culture both high and low. The questions are multiple-choice, and time is of the essence: You have 30 seconds to answer, and as the seconds tick away, the question’s point value drops from 50 all the way down to zero, so you’ll want to click on your answer as fast as you possibly can. There’s no penalty for an incorrect answer, so feel free to take a guess if your puny human brain fails you.

At the end of the quiz, you’ll be able to compare your score with that of the average contestant, as well as to the score of a Slate-ster whom I’ve talked into taking the quiz on the record. This week’s contestant is Slate’s energy columnist, Daniel Gross.

Advertisement

Think you can ace my quiz and beat Gross? Good luck!

The Slate Quiz with quizmaster Ken Jennings

Last week an election in McKinley County, New Mexico, was decided by the narrowest of margins. After a recount, the race for magistrate judge had come down to a precise 2,879-vote tie between the two candidates—so the contest was settled by coin toss, as per state law. Kenneth Howard Jr. correctly called "heads" and took office. Hopefully you won't need such desperate last resorts as you select your answers to this week's Slate News Quiz.

Question 1 of 12

The Malaysian airliner shot down over Ukraine on Thursday was a flight that originated in what city?

Question 2 of 12

What country mediated negotations between Israel and Hamas this week, in hopes of achieving a cease-fire in Gaza?

After a temporary cease-fire, Israel began a ground invasion into Gaza on Thursday.

Question 3 of 12

Which of these could land you a $500 fine in California, under new regulations approved this week?

Despite calls for cutbacks, water consumption has actually increased as the Golden State faces one of the most severe droughts in its history.

Question 4 of 12

In the wake of the U.S. spying scandal, Germany is looking into thwarting the NSA by using what?

Russia reportedly made the same move last year, following Edward Snowden's revelations.

Question 5 of 12

A new study by French scientists revealed that, despite three uneventful centuries, what is currently in a "critical state"?

Mount Fuji last erupted in 1707, but the geologists believe recent seismic activity is building pressure below the volcano, which sits only 60 miles southwest of Tokyo.

Question 6 of 12

What did Pope Francis, speaking with an Italian newspaper over the weekend, reportedly call "a leprosy in our house"?

The newspaper also quoted the pontiff as saying that 2 percent of Catholic priests were pedophiles, though the Vatican disputes the accuracy of the interview.

Question 7 of 12

This past weekend 3,000 of what objects rained down unexpectedly on a highway outside Blackfoot, Idaho?

The balls, which were redeemable for prizes, were supposed to be scattered over a crowd enjoying "Blackfoot Pride Days" nearby, but the pilot missed the drop zone badly.

Question 8 of 12

What organization, facing its lowest membership in more than a decade, announced this week that it was completely overhauling and streamlining its application process?

Volunteers may now choose the country they will be serving in, for the first time in the corps' 53-year history.

Question 9 of 12

A university lecturer in Thailand was caught on tape offering A's to students in exchange for what?

"Khanittha got 17 points in psychology class. She gave me stamps," says the teacher in the video. "Then, I gave her A+. Do you think you got that grade by your own brain?"

Question 10 of 12

After tense negotiations at the American embassy, Secretary of State John Kerry was able to announce what result Saturday?

But the deal has run into trouble over the logistical details of auditing the 8.1 million votes cast in the disputed presidential election.

Question 11 of 12

A journalist was stopped by a TSA agent at Orlando International Airport who asked for his passport, after he told them he was from where?

The District of Columbia is "a bizarre place, but passport not needed," tweeted reporter Justin Gray about the apparent geographic ineptitude.

Question 12 of 12

What beloved 73-year-old died this week, heroically taking an assassin's bullet intended for a gay U.S. senator?

The tragedy occurred in the monthly Life With Archie comic, which follows the future adventures of the Riverdale gang into adulthood.

Click to revisit answers

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
End
July 18, 2014

Anonymous User

Log in to track your scores!

vs.

Daniel Gross

Slate energy columnist

Kuala Lumpur

Frankfurt

Sydney

Amsterdam

Turkey

France

The United States

Egypt

Using antibacterial soap

Smoking at the beach

Washing your car

Not having a reality show

Typewriters

Tinfoil

False mustaches

Braille

Dutch elm disease

London Bridge

Mount Fuji

The sunspot cycle

Clergy sex abuse

Anti-Semitism

Income inequality

Actual leprosy

Ping-pong balls

Salamanders

Satellite parts

Crest Whitestrips

Weight Watchers

The Peace Corps

The AFL-CIO

The Republican Party

Tickling his feet

Retweets

Driving lessons

7-Eleven coupons

A new round of nuclear talks with Iran

A compromise in the Afghan election crisis

A border security deal with Mexico

LeBron James' return to Cleveland

New Mexico

Palestine, Texas

The District of Columbia

Honolulu

Lassie

Perry Mason

Archie Andrews

Nadine Gordimer

Average

0 points

You

0 points

Daniel Gross
Slate energy columnist

0 points

Answer quickly to earn more points!
50 points

0

total

Quiz Template by Chris Kirk and Andrew Morgan

Ken Jennings is a 74-time Jeopardy! winner and is the author of six books, most recently the Junior Genius Guides.

TODAY IN SLATE

Foreigners

More Than Scottish Pride

Scotland’s referendum isn’t about nationalism. It’s about a system that failed, and a new generation looking to take a chance on itself. 

What Charles Barkley Gets Wrong About Corporal Punishment and Black Culture

Why Greenland’s “Dark Snow” Should Worry You

If You’re Outraged by the NFL, Follow This Satirical Blowhard on Twitter

The Best Way to Organize Your Fridge

Politics

The GOP’s Focus on Fake Problems

Why candidates like Scott Walker are building campaigns on drug tests for the poor and voter ID laws.

Sports Nut

Giving Up on Goodell

How the NFL lost the trust of its most loyal reporters.

Is It Worth Paying Full Price for the iPhone 6 to Keep Your Unlimited Data Plan? We Crunch the Numbers.

Farewell! Emily Bazelon on What She Will Miss About Slate.

  News & Politics
Weigel
Sept. 16 2014 7:03 PM Kansas Secretary of State Loses Battle to Protect Senator From Tough Race
  Business
Moneybox
Sept. 16 2014 4:16 PM The iPhone 6 Marks a Fresh Chance for Wireless Carriers to Kill Your Unlimited Data
  Life
The Eye
Sept. 16 2014 12:20 PM These Outdoor Cat Shelters Have More Style Than the Average Home
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 15 2014 3:31 PM My Year As an Abortion Doula
  Slate Plus
Slate Plus Video
Sept. 16 2014 2:06 PM A Farewell From Emily Bazelon The former senior editor talks about her very first Slate pitch and says goodbye to the magazine.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 16 2014 8:43 PM This 17-Minute Tribute to David Fincher Is the Perfect Preparation for Gone Girl
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 16 2014 6:40 PM This iPhone 6 Feature Will Change Weather Forecasting
  Health & Science
Science
Sept. 16 2014 4:09 PM It’s All Connected What links creativity, conspiracy theories, and delusions? A phenomenon called apophenia.
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 15 2014 9:05 PM Giving Up on Goodell How the NFL lost the trust of its most loyal reporters.