Science & Technology

The Two-Way
11:34 am
Mon January 27, 2014

CEO Of A Bitcoin Exchange Charged With Money Laundering

Charlie Shrem, CEO of the BitInstant bitcoin exchange, and another man have been charged with allegedly laundering money for individuals who illegally bought drugs online.

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The Salt
11:07 am
Mon January 27, 2014

Soil, Weedkillers And GMOs: When Numbers Don't Tell The Whole Story

Farm statistics: usually illuminating ... occasionally misleading.
Seth Perlman AP

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 3:12 pm

I love numbers. A picture may be worth a thousand words, but I think a good bar graph can be worth a thousand pictures.

But three times in the past few days, I've come across statistics in reputable-looking publications that made me stop and say, "Huh?"

I did some investigating so you don't have to. And indeed, the numbers don't quite tell the story that they purport to tell.

So here goes: My skeptical inquiry into statistics on herbicide use, soil erosion, and the production of fruits and nuts.

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All Tech Considered
2:34 am
Mon January 27, 2014

As PC Sales Drop, Intel Delays A Plant Opening And Cuts Jobs

With new construction in the background, President Obama spoke about manufacturing and jobs during a visit to Intel's Ocotillo facility, Jan. 25, 2012, in Chandler, Ariz.
Ross D. Franklin AP

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 11:57 am

As far as factories go, this one was about as ballyhooed as they come. In 2012, President Obama visited Intel's Ocotillo campus in suburban Phoenix, the day after his State of the Union address.

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Science
2:33 am
Mon January 27, 2014

Grand Canyon May Be Older (And Younger) Than You Think

The eastern Grand Canyon was about half-carved (to the level of the red cliffs above the hiker) from 15 million to 25 million years ago, an analysis published Sunday suggests. But the inner gorge was likely scooped out by the Colorado River in just the past 6 million years.
Laura Crossey University of New Mexico

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 10:31 am

In recent years geologists have hotly debated the age of the Grand Canyon. Some think it's young (just 6 million years old), while others argue that it dates back 70 million years — to the days of dinosaurs.

Now one group says the Grand Canyon is neither young nor old. Instead, these geologists say, it's both.

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Science
4:50 pm
Sun January 26, 2014

A Reading Teacher Who Lost The Ability To Read

Alexia is a condition often associated with the occipital lobe — the part of the brain that receives visual information.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Sun January 26, 2014 5:53 pm

Here's a medical mystery that begins with a kindergarten teacher. We're not using her full name to protect her medical privacy, so we'll call her M.

M. taught reading to 4 and 5-year-olds at a school outside Chicago, but two years ago something happened to her that changed her life: she lost the ability to read.

Her problems began a few days before Halloween. M. was helping out at a Halloween party put on by the local park district, selling tickets at the front desk.

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Code Switch
8:43 am
Sun January 26, 2014

Can The Auto Industry Win The Future If It Looks Like 1974?

Incoming General Motors CEO Mary Barra at the center of the press scrum during the North American International Auto Show.
Paul Sancya AP

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 4:33 pm

So my week at the North American International Auto Show is wrapping up. It's my fourth Detroit Auto Show. And boy has it come a long way.

There is a vibrancy and spirit this year that's different than other shows. There's also been a lot more money spent. The tenor of the show is very different than when the federal government had an ownership stake in Chrysler and General Motors.

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Space
8:41 am
Sun January 26, 2014

Mars Rover Turns 3-Month Mission Into Decade Of Exploration

Originally published on Sun January 26, 2014 11:47 am

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Ten years ago, NASA's rover, optimistically named Opportunity, landed on Mars on what was to be a three-month mission. But Opportunity is still going strong today, still searching the Red Planet, sending data and images back to NASA. To celebrate Opportunity's decade of life, we called Jim Bell. He's an astronomer at Arizona State University. Welcome to the program.

JIM BELL: Great to be here.

MARTIN: So, take us back, Jim. What was Opportunity originally designed to do?

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Technology
8:41 am
Sun January 26, 2014

Paramount Cuts Film, Giving The Starring Role To Digital

Originally published on Sun January 26, 2014 11:47 am

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

It's a heavy burden for such a light movie but it's possible that Anchorman 2 is the movie that will ring in the end of film. The L.A. Times reported last week that Paramount Pictures, the studio that made "Anchorman 2," will move to a completely digital format to distribute its films to theaters. It's a shift with huge implications, not just for cinephiles who are attached to the warmth and quality of 35 millimeter film, but for archivists who rely on film as a medium that will stand the test of time.

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The Salt
4:05 am
Sun January 26, 2014

Pig Virus Continues To Spread, Raising Fears Of Pricier Bacon

Piglets at Hilldale Farm in State Center, Iowa in March 2013, just before porcine epidemic diarrhea began spreading through hog farms in the U.S.
Amy Mayer Harvest Public Media

Pork producers across the country are grappling with a virus that's going after piglets. Livestock economists estimate the porcine epidemic diarrhea, or PED, virus has already killed about 1 million baby pigs in the U.S. since it was first found in Iowa last spring.

Canada reported its first case Thursday, and the disease shows no sign of abating. That has veterinarians worried.

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Technology
7:16 pm
Sat January 25, 2014

Computers Are The Future, But Does Everyone Need To Code?

A group called StudentRND throws 24-hour code-a-thons for programmers of all backgrounds and skill levels. Coders show up at noon on Saturday, pitch ideas, form teams and code through the night trying to finish by noon on Sunday. Above, StudentRND participants work at a 2011 CodeDay in Seattle.
StudentRND

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 1:01 pm

Republicans and Democrats don't see eye-to-eye on much these days, but there is one aspect of the future that they can agree on: "Becoming literate in code is as essential to being literate in language and math," says House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, a Republican from Virginia.

President Obama agrees: "Computers are going to be a big part of your future," he predicts.

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