Science & Technology

Krulwich Wonders...
7:03 am
Mon February 17, 2014

Expanding The NPR Brand, Mom By Mom

Connie J. Sun

The other day, I wrote a post about a cartoonist, Connie Sun, and her thoughts about animals. Her mom heard about it, and called Connie to say "Yea!" and then, because she's an honest woman, she asked, "What is NPR?" Here's what happened next:

I have this conversation all the time. So many people are not aware that NPR writes things, "posts" things. But we are spreading the word. (Going from "What is NPR?" to "NPR is blogs?" — that's progress, I think. No?)

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All Tech Considered
2:39 am
Mon February 17, 2014

A Push To Boost Computer Science Learning, Even At An Early Age

Alex Tu, an advanced placement student, takes a computer science class in Midwest City, Okla. There's been a sharp decline in the number of computer science classes offered in U.S. secondary schools.
Sue Ogrocki AP

Originally published on Sun February 23, 2014 11:11 am

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Shots - Health News
2:37 am
Mon February 17, 2014

Candy Flavors Put E-Cigarettes On Kids' Menu

Kids as young as 13 purchase e-cigarettes, or "vape pens," online, where independent sellers don't necessarily ask a buyer's age.
Jenny Lei Bolario Youth Radio

Originally published on Tue February 18, 2014 2:59 pm

Electronic cigarettes are often billed as a safe way for smokers to try to kick their habit. But it's not just smokers who are getting their fix this way. According to a survey published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 5 middle school students who've tried one say they've never smoked a "real" cigarette. And between 2011 and 2012, e-cigarettes doubled in popularity among middle and high school students.

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Shots - Health News
12:17 pm
Sun February 16, 2014

Research Shows New Flu Viruses Often Arise In Domestic Animals

New research finds a close connection between the flu that devastated the horse population in North America in the 1870s and the avian flu of that period.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

As flu-watchers like to say, you can always count on influenza virus to surprise.

The latest revelation is that scientists have apparently been wrong about where new flu viruses come from. The dogma is that they always incubate in wild migratory birds, then get into domestic poultry, and then jump into mammals — especially pigs and humans.

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The Two-Way
10:41 am
Sun February 16, 2014

Kerry Warns Indonesia: Climate Change Threatens 'Entire Way Of Life'

Secretary of State John Kerry gestures while speaking about climate change in Jakarta on Sunday.
POOL Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Sun February 16, 2014 11:11 am

Secretary of State John Kerry is continuing a push to move climate change to the top of the global agenda, telling an audience in the archipelago nation of Indonesia that rising global temperatures and sea levels could threaten their "entire way of life."

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The Two-Way
9:12 am
Sun February 16, 2014

Warming Arctic May Be Causing Jet Stream To Lose Its Way

The jet stream that circles Earth's north pole travels west to east. But when the jet stream interacts with a Rossby wave, as shown here, the winds can wander far north and south, bringing frigid air to normally mild southern states.
NASA/GSFC

Originally published on Sun February 16, 2014 11:17 am

Mark Twain once said: "If you don't like the weather in New England now, just wait a few minutes."

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Humans
7:10 am
Sun February 16, 2014

Floods or Family Conflict? Bad Dreams Differ By Gender

Originally published on Sun February 16, 2014 10:44 am

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I think it's safe to say most of us do not enjoy nightmares - that cold sweat, sitting up straight in bed, our pulse racing. But when Antonio Zadra, professor at the University of Montreal, began working on a study about nightmares he found that the narrative animating those bad dreams tended to be very different between men and women. He is coauthor of a new study that has a lot to say about the differences in the way we dream. He joins us now from Montreal. Welcome to the program.

ANTONIO ZADRA: Thank you for having me.

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Space
7:10 am
Sun February 16, 2014

Scientists Discover Universe's Oldest Star

Originally published on Sun February 16, 2014 10:44 am

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF THEME MUSIC, "STAR TREK")

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Scientists have discovered the oldest star in the galaxy. And it's really old, 13.6 billion years. Now to be clear, they had known about this star before but hadn't yet figured out its age. This star is four billion years older than any other star found to date.

Here to more to talk about what this star can tell us about the great beyond is Timothy Beers, of the National Optical Astronomy Observatory in Tucson, Arizona. Thanks so much for being with us.

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Parallels
4:31 am
Sun February 16, 2014

How Most Anyone Can Find Photos Of Secret Government Sites

A North Korean KN-08 intercontinental ballistic missile rolls past in a military parade in Pyongyang in July to mark the 60th anniversary of the Korean War armistice. A team of U.S. researchers recently found the buildings where the North Korean military is believed to be assembling the launchers.
David Guttenfelder AP

Originally published on Sun February 16, 2014 12:30 pm

Last August, Jeffrey Lewis saw a North Korean propaganda video, posted in April 2012, which showed its missile launchers holding intercontinental ballistic missiles, shot from an oddly-shaped building.

He was curious. So with a team of students, he modeled what the building would look like and searched for what North Korean defectors had said about the building where the missile launchers were supposedly made.

"I will admit I got a little bit obsessed with this," he says.

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Technology
4:00 pm
Sat February 15, 2014

Getting Better At Predicting The Weather

Originally published on Sat February 15, 2014 8:18 pm

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

It's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR West. I'm Arun Rath.

It has been an ugly winter. In the past two weeks, a pair of storms has made life miserable across the Eastern U.S. On Thursday, much of the south and northeast were buried in snow and ice. At least 26 people have died. Tens of thousands of flights have been canceled, rail service delayed, and roads in many cities are still impassable.

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