The newly appointed emergency financial manager of Detroit begins the Herculean task Monday of turning the once bustling capital of the car business back from the brink of bankruptcy.
Though Detroit still has its cultural centers, architectural gems, funky restaurants and packed sporting events downtown, the city has suffered an urban blight that has slowly eaten away at its neighborhoods.
From Star Wars' R2-D2 to The Terminator to WALL-E, robots have pervaded popular culture and ignited our imaginations. But today, machines that can do our bidding have moved from science fiction to real life.
Think hands-free vacuum cleaners or iPhone's Siri or robotic arms performing surgery. At the Innorobo conference in Lyon, France, the latest in service robot technology was on display.
Back in 1996, a group of baby cicadas burrowed into soils in the eastern U.S. to lead a quiet life of constant darkness and a diet of roots. Now at the ripe age of 17, those little cicadas are all grown up and it's time to molt, procreate and die while annoying a few million humans with their constant chirping in the process.
Originally published on Sun March 24, 2013 3:23 pm
San Jose, Calif., is just a piece of a very big March Madness pie. But in the eight teams that gathered there for second- and third-round games this week, you could see the undeniable trend in big-time college basketball globalization.
Rosters from schools as geographically diverse as Syracuse, New Mexico State and California featured athletes from Senegal, France, Canada, South Africa, Croatia, Sudan.
But it's the University of Oregon with a groundbreaker — from Iran.
Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg unveiled another plan to try to promote healthier living this week. He wants New York to be the first U.S. city to make stores that sell tobacco keep those products out of sight. Cigarettes for sale are now kept in Plexiglas cubbyholes in bodegas and other convenience stores that also sell beer, candy, lottery tickets. Under this proposal, the cigarettes would have to be kept in a drawer or behind a curtain.
Host Scott Simon tells us about the new "anti-Bloomberg" law in Mississippi, which bars cities and towns from passing local laws to limit portion sizes. What do you think? Please tell us on Twitter, @NPRWeekend.
Kurt Braunohler is a comedian, and he is not immune to a good, dumb joke. In his latest project, funded by donors through Kickstarter, he's hiring a pilot to write "How do I land?" in the sky above Los Angeles at 3:33 p.m. PT on Saturday. Host Scott Simon speaks with Braunohler about the project, and his comedic goal to bring more absurdity to people's lives.
One argument used by some conservatives in the Supreme Court cases is that gay Americans have become so politically powerful and prominent they don't need special consideration from the courts. Whether or not that's true, it is clear that lesbian-gay-bisexual-and-transgendered advocacy groups have built a strong network of lobbyists and political activists in Washington, D.C.
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. And President Obama heads home from the Middle East today after a mixed reception to his four-day visit. Mr. Obama spent much of that time in Israel trying to lay the groundwork to revive the long-stalled peace process with Palestinians. He also traveled to the West Bank and met with Jordan's King Abdullah. NPR's Scott Horsley has a recap.
Kenneth Pattengale and Joey Ryan were doing just fine as solo performers. Then one night, Ryan walked into a bar where Pattengale was playing.
"I heard Kenneth perform a song that he had written from the perspective of a dead dog, only very recently having been hit by a truck," Ryan says, wryly. "And it was that sort of uplifting material that drew us together."