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9:02 am
Fri June 28, 2013

Daniel Okrent: Swinging For The Fences

Daniel Okrent
Courtesy of the author

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 10:55 am

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TED Radio Hour
8:51 am
Fri June 28, 2013

How Does An Islamist Extremist Change His Mind?

"I am everything I am today, because of my past." - Maajid Nawaz
James Duncan Davidson TED

Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 9:26 am

Part 3 of the TED Radio Hour episode Turning Points.

About Maajid Nawaz's TEDTalk

For more than a decade, Maajid Nawaz recruited young Muslims to an extreme Islamist group. But while serving time in an Egyptian prison, he went through a complete ideological transformation. He left the group, his friends, his marriage for a new life as a democracy advocate.

About Maajid Nawaz

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'It's All Politics': NPR's Weekly News Roundup
8:07 am
Fri June 28, 2013

It's All Politics, June 27, 2013

J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 1:27 pm

  • Listen to the Roundup

NPR's Ron Elving and Ken Rudin discuss the landmark rulings by the Supreme Court on two same-sex marriage cases and another involving the 1965 Voting Rights Act. All those rulings came by way of narrow 5-to-4 margins. Also: Massachusetts Rep. Ed Markey's (D) special election victory. Markey's 36 years in the U.S. House is the longest anyone has served before being elected to the U.S. Senate.

All Tech Considered
7:57 am
Fri June 28, 2013

Please Text And Tweet During This Theater Performance

A show called #Hashtag encourages audience members to tweet during the performance.
Quinn.Anya via Flickr

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 10:14 am

See if this sounds familiar: You're seated in a movie theater, watching the latest IMAX disaster flick when someone slides their iPhone out of their pocket and starts texting their significant other. The glow from the phone lights up their face like the man in the moon and somehow — despite the $75 million used on the pyrotechnic budget alone — that blue-white glow at the edge of your vision triggers instincts honed over millions of years of evolution, and you find yourself incapable of focusing on the movie.

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Monkey See
7:52 am
Fri June 28, 2013

'The Heat' Is Absolutely Revolutionary, For Being Mostly Ordinary

Melissa McCarthy and Sandra Bullock in The Heat.
Gemma La Mana Twentieth Century Fox

The date: June 14, 2013. The writer: me, in despair, without a single non-art-house movie with a female lead playing anywhere near me. The piece: "At The Movies, The Women Are Gone."

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The Two-Way
7:41 am
Fri June 28, 2013

NSA Leaker's Father: Snowden Betrayed Government Not The People

Edward Snowden, seen during a video interview with The Guardian.
Glenn Greenwald/Laura Poitras EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 10:13 am

Lonnie Snowden says he doesn't believe his son, Edward, committed treason when he leaked information about top-secret U.S. government surveillance programs.

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Krulwich Wonders...
7:18 am
Fri June 28, 2013

Artist Plays Detective: Can I Reconstruct A Face From A Piece Of Hair?

Vimeo

Her techniques aren't super-sophisticated. She's not a leader in the field. She's more or less an amateur. This is what you can do with ordinary genetic engineering tools right now. Artist Heather Dewey-Hagborg can find a cigarette lying on the sidewalk on Myrtle Avenue in Brooklyn, and working from traces of saliva, by pulling DNA out of those saliva cells and using a bunch of simple algorithms available online, she can make some very educated guesses about what the smoker might look like.

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The Two-Way
6:36 am
Fri June 28, 2013

Vatican Official Arrested Over $26 Million Scheme

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 9:50 am

A Vatican official already under investigation for money laundering was arrested after police say they caught him and two other men plotting a scheme that would bring in 20 million euros (about $26 million) in cash into Italy from Switzerland on a jet.

Prosecutors say Monsignor Nunzio Scarano said the money belonged to some friends, according to The Associated Press. The wire service talked to Nunzio's attorney Silverio Sica and reports:

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The Two-Way
6:26 am
Fri June 28, 2013

Book News: Paula Deen's Cookbook Sales Still Sizzle

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 6:48 am

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

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Animals
6:13 am
Fri June 28, 2013

Seattle Moves Fireworks Display Out Of Respect For Eaglets

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Here are two great American symbols that don't always go well together: bald eagles and Fourth of July fireworks. A couple of eaglets are in a nest in a Seattle suburb, right near the spot where the city launches its Independence Day display. The local Audubon Society worried the pyrotechnics would startle the baby birds, still too young to fly. So organizers moved the launch site, plus say this year's display will use quieter fireworks. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Around the Nation
5:59 am
Fri June 28, 2013

Designers To Put Homer Simpson's Car To The Test

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 6:13 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm David Greene.

"Simpsons" fans might remember an episode where Homer designs a car. It's a puke-green monstrosity with tail fins, extra-large drink holders and a bubble dome to keep kids separated. Well, they couldn't resist. Some automotive designers built a real car based on Homer's epic design.

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "THE SIMPSONS")

DAN CASTELLANETA: (as Homer Simpson) D'oh.

The Two-Way
5:47 am
Fri June 28, 2013

With Mandela's Health As Backdrop, Obama Heads To S. Africa

Children release 95 balloons to mark Nelson Mandela's upcoming birthday outside the Mediclinic Heart Hospital where Mandela is being treated for a recurring lung infection in Pretoria, South Africa.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 3:10 pm

Update at 4 p.m. ET: President Arrives In South Africa

President Obama and his family landed in South Africa late Friday. It's the second stop on his one-week trip to the African continent.

Our original post continues:

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Education
3:44 am
Fri June 28, 2013

Student Loan Rates Set To Double On July 1

The interest rate on new Stafford loans is going to jump from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent Monday.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu March 20, 2014 3:00 pm

The interest rate on government-backed student loans is going to jump from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent Monday.

Republicans, Democrats and the Obama administration could not agree on a plan to keep it from happening. Lawmakers say a deal is still possible after the July 4 recess. But if they don't agree on a plan soon, 7 million students expected to take out new Stafford loans could be stuck with a much bigger bill when they start paying the money back.

It has been one of the more heated debates in Washington this year.

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Environment
3:33 am
Fri June 28, 2013

Put Down Oil Drill, Pick Up The Test Tube: Making Fuel From Yeast

Jay Keasling (left), speaking with Rajit Sapar at the Joint BioEnergy Institute, is pioneering a technique to develop diesel fuel from yeast.
Courtesy of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 9:41 pm

What if we could get our gasoline, diesel fuel and jet fuel from yeast instead of from oil wells? That's not as crazy as it sounds. In fact, it's already happening on a small scale. And there's a vigorous research effort to ramp this up on a massive scale.

One of the more innovative approaches uses a new technology called "synthetic biology." Jay Keasling is one of the leaders in this hot field.

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Science
3:33 am
Fri June 28, 2013

Tips For Surviving A Mega-Disaster

Patong beach in Phuket, Thailand, was destroyed by the tsunami on Dec. 25, 2004. More than 230,000 people died.
Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 9:39 am

The U.S. is ready for tornadoes, but not tsunamis.

That's the conclusion of a panel of scientists who spoke this week on "mega-disasters" at the American Geophysical Union's science policy meeting in Washington, D.C.

The nation has done a good job preparing for natural disasters like hurricanes and tornadoes, which occur frequently but usually produce limited damage and relatively few casualties, the panelists said. But government officials are just beginning to develop plans for events like a major tsunami or a large asteroid hurtling toward a populated area.

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