NPR Blogs

The Two-Way
8:43 am
Thu June 27, 2013

Book News: Arthur C. Clarke's DNA Headed For A New Space Odyssey

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

Read more
13.7: Cosmos And Culture
8:23 am
Thu June 27, 2013

Bullied With Food: Another Risk For Kids With Food Allergies

iStockphoto.com

Imagine this: Another child has spit milk through a straw directly into your severely milk-allergic child's face. Your child goes into anaphylaxis, having been bullied specifically because of his or her food allergy.

Read more
The Two-Way
8:08 am
Thu June 27, 2013

Top Stories: Mandela Still Critical; Obama Visits Senegal

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 9:35 am

Good morning, here are our early stories:

-- Mandela's Daughter: 'It Doesn't Look Good.'

-- President Obama Begins Weeklong Africa Trip.

And here are more early headlines:

Read more
The Two-Way
7:15 am
Thu June 27, 2013

Mandela's Daughter: 'It Doesn't Look Good'

A man holds a picture as people gather to leave messages of support for former South African President Nelson Mandela outside the Mediclinic Heart Hospital in Pretoria, South Africa.
Jeff J Mitchell Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 10:59 am

Nelson Mandela's condition is "very critical," his daughter Makaziwe Mandela told South African broadcaster SABC.

"I reiterate that Tata is very critical, that anything is imminent," said Makaziwe. "But I want to emphasize again that it's only God who knows when the time to go is. So we will wait with Tata. He's still giving us hope by opening his eyes, he's still reactive to touch, we will live with that hope until the final end comes."

Read more
The Two-Way
6:37 am
Thu June 27, 2013

President Obama Begins Weeklong Africa Trip

President Obama reviews an honor guard on Wednesday outside the presidential palace in Dakar, Senegal.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 12:41 pm

Arriving in Senegal on Wednesday night, President Obama kicked off a weeklong trip to Africa. NPR's Ari Shapiro, who is traveling with the president, tells our Newscast desk that Obama will emphasize democracy and security during his visit.

Ari filed this report from Dakar:

"The streets here in Dakar are full of posters proclaiming, 'Welcome Obama.'

"They show the U.S. president next to Senegal's recently elected president, Macky Sall. The posters almost make it look like the two are running mates in a campaign.

Read more
The Salt
4:04 am
Thu June 27, 2013

Coffee Futures: The Highs And Lows Of A Cup Of Joe

Want to invest in coffee futures? One roaster says when it comes to the price of coffee, it "is like a roller coaster."
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 12:49 pm

NPR's Uri Berliner is taking $5,000 of his own savings and putting it to work. Though he's no financial whiz or guru, he's exploring different types of investments — alternatives that may fare better than staying in a savings account that's not keeping up with inflation.

Read more
The Two-Way
12:03 am
Thu June 27, 2013

As People Head Into Space, PayPal Says It Will Follow Them

No Free Doughnuts, Even In Space: PayPal is announcing a project with SETI, aiming to solve issues around taking regular people — and commerce — into space. Here, an artist's rendering of a space hotel, from the Space Tourism Society.
John Spencer Space Tourism Society

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 12:48 pm

Many people know how to buy things in cyberspace. But what about doing business in outer space? That's the question PayPal says it wants to answer. Citing the looming era of space tourism, the company is creating the PayPal Galactic project along with the SETI Institute, "to help make universal space payments a reality."

Read more
The Salt
3:41 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

Rosie The Robot Won't Serve Your Food, But She'll Pick It

A lettuce thinner manufactured by Ramsay Highlander removes excess seedlings from the field so that others have room to grow. Just one worker is required to operate the machine.
Rachel Estabrook

Originally published on Wed June 26, 2013 3:59 pm

From manufacturing to cupcake sales, companies are finding that machines can often do the job just as well, or better, than humans. But some tasks – like picking and tending to fruit and vegetable crops – have remained the territory of low-wage laborers.

But labor-starved growers are now eying machines with increasing interest.

Some 90 percent of the strawberries and 80 percent of the salad greens grown in the U.S. come from California. These crops and a lot of others have always been picked by hand because they don't ripen all at once and can bruise easily.

Read more
The Salt
3:11 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

Can You Be Addicted To Carbs? Scientists Are Checking That Out

Eating refined carbohydrates like bagels may stimulate brain regions involved in reward and cravings, research suggests.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Sat June 29, 2013 9:33 pm

Fresh research adds weight to the notion that certain foods (think empty carbs like bagels and sweet treats) can lead to more intense hunger and overeating.

Fast-digesting carbohydrates can stimulate regions of the brain involved in cravings and addiction, according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Read more
Shots - Health News
3:08 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

NIH Takes Another Step Toward Retirement Of Research Chimps

Chimpanzees play at Chimp Haven, a retirement home for former research animals, in Keithville, La.
Gerald Herbert AP

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 9:32 am

The National Institutes of Health says it will retire hundreds of chimpanzees that the agency had been using for research. Animal rights activists see the move as a big step towards ending the use of chimps in research, but it will be awhile before any of the research chimps find their way into retirement homes.

Read more
The Two-Way
2:42 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

Black Bear Roams In D.C., Days After Red Panda's Jaunt

A black bear was captured in northwest Washington, D.C., Wednesday, two days after Rusty the red panda escaped from the National Zoo into a nearby area.
YouTube

First there was Rusty, the red panda. Now there are reports that a bear was captured after roaming around in Washington, D.C., Wednesday, prompting (mostly unserious) concerns of a possible siege on the nation's capital.

Read more
The Two-Way
2:33 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

Justice Kennedy At Center Of Gay Rights Decisions For A Decade

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy has now written two landmark gay rights decisions.
Damian Dovarganes AP

Originally published on Wed June 26, 2013 4:06 pm

Ten years ago, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a Texas "Homosexual Conduct" law that criminalized some sexual acts.

Today, on the anniversary of that decision, the high court overturned a federal law that defined marriage as between a man and a woman.

Read more
The Two-Way
2:00 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

WATCH: Reactions To Gay Marriage Rulings

Read more
The Two-Way
1:42 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

Revised GDP Numbers Weaker Than Projected

The nation's gross domestic product, the output of goods and services produced within the U.S., grew at a rate of 1.8 percent in the first quarter of this year, according to the Commerce Department's Bureau of Economic Analysis. That's a downward revision from the 2.4 percent rate previously reported.

Read more
Shots - Health News
12:28 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

Laughing Gas Gets A Safety Check

Is nitrous oxide during surgery safe?
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 9:32 am

To anesthesiologists, laughing gas is no joke.

Nitrous oxide was one of the first chemicals used to make surgery and tooth-pulling painless. Back in the 1840s, Horace Wells, a dentist in Hartford, Conn., did his best to popularize it as an anesthetic agent. Despite some failed demonstrations early on, use of the gas during surgery eventually became routine.

Read more

Pages