Science & Technology

Technology
4:35 am
Tue October 22, 2013

Why HealthCare.gov Isn't Like A Typical E-Commerce Site

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 5:53 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Now, some suggested that in this era of eBay and Amazon, building an online health care marketplace just shouldn't have been this difficult.

Here's NPR technology correspondent Steve Henn.

STEVE HENN, BYLINE: Sina Djafari has built more than one successful online marketplace. He now builds software to make building new e-commerce sites even easier. And he says when you go to any website to buy something, you usually have just one or two simple questions you want answered before you click buy.

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Shots - Health News
5:21 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

How Long Do They Really Have To Fix That Obamacare Website?

The mood wasn't sunny at the White House Rose Garden on Monday, as President Obama addressed the errors plaguing the computer system for health insurance enrollment.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Mon October 21, 2013 7:06 pm

They've got a few weeks.

But if federal officials can't get the new online insurance marketplace running smoothly by mid-November, the problems plaguing the three-week-old website could become a far bigger threat to the success of the health law, hampering enrollment and fueling opponents' calls to delay implementation, analysts say.

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It's All Politics
5:03 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

5 Questions Kathleen Sebelius Must Answer

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is likely to have a very long day when she testifies before Congress about the Affordable Care Act website problems.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Mon October 21, 2013 6:12 pm

The hottest hot seat in Washington is the one occupied by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, whose office confirmed Monday she'll testify about the Internet disaster that is HealthCare.gov, the Affordable Care Act website.

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Shots - Health News
4:29 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Scientists Grow New Hair In A Lab, But Don't Rush To Buy A Comb

Maybe someday Jerry won't be laughing at George's follicularly challenged scalp. But despite scientific advances there's still no cure for baldness.
NBC NBC via Getty Images

With a tiny clump of cells from a man's scalp, scientists have grown new human hair in the laboratory.

But don't get too excited. A magic cure for baldness isn't around the corner. The experimental approach is quite limited and years from reaching the clinic — for many reasons.

The scientists have grown the hair only on a tiny patch of human skin grafted onto the back of a mouse. And as wispy locks go, the strands are pretty pathetic. Some hairs were white, and some didn't even make their way out of the skin.

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The Two-Way
4:18 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Government Shutdown Delays Rocket Launch

A Minotaur I at Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.
NASA

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 9:36 am

The launch of a rocket carrying a record-breaking 29 satellites — originally set for early next month — will be delayed by a few weeks after the partial government shutdown halted preparations.

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Digital Life
3:59 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Sometimes You Need Your To-Do List To Be A Bit Bossy

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 9:10 am

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Finally in Tech, an app with attitude, it's called Carrot To-Do and its goal is to help you get things done.

DAN AMIRA: Carrot is basically a to-do list but it has kind of its own personality. And the personality is that of, like, kind of a friendly but also condescending dictator.

CORNISH: That's Dan Amira, a senior editor at New York Magazine. We asked him to download the Carrot To-Do app and add reviewing it to his to-do list.

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Technology
3:59 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Small Kentucky Town Makes High-Tech Glass Amid Bucolic Farmland

Originally published on Mon October 28, 2013 10:08 am

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

I'm Melissa Block. And it's time now for All Tech Considered. This week, we visit the small farming town of Harrodsburg, Kentucky. It's the home of something called Willow Glass, glass that's super thin and flexible and soon find its way into the high-tech marketplace. It's made by Corning in the same plant that developed Gorilla Glass, that's the stuff Apple uses to make the protective cover for its iPhone.

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All Tech Considered
3:12 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

The HealthCare.gov 'Tech Surge' Is Racing Against The Clock

HealthCare.gov has been plagued with problems since the health insurance exchange site opened Oct. 1.
Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 9:10 am

A "tech surge" is underway to help clean up the code of the error-plagued HealthCare.gov site.

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All Tech Considered
2:43 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Online Dating Is On The Rise (But There Are Still Haters)

Wait, where can we get a heart-shaped mouse?
Monkey Business Images iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon October 21, 2013 4:14 pm

Ask Michael Hofmann how he met his girlfriend, Addi, and he'll tell you, with a laugh, "www.Match.com."

He signed up for the online dating site shortly after moving to D.C., last year. He was finding it hard to make connections at bars, he says, and didn't have time to search for more meaningful places to meet people.

He hit the romance jackpot: Addi was the first woman on the site he went on a date with. They both liked The Sound of Music and Harry Potter — but more important, they liked each other. After dating for nine months, they moved in together.

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The Salt
2:38 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Kansas Farmers Commit To Taking Less Water From The Ground

The long arms of pivot irrigation rigs deliver water from the Ogallala Aquifer to circular fields of corn in northwestern Kansas.
Dan Charles NPR

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 11:38 am

If you've flown across Nebraska, Kansas or western Texas on a clear day, you've seen them: geometrically arranged circles of green and brown on the landscape, typically half a mile in diameter. They're the result of pivot irrigation, in which long pipes-on-wheels rotate slowly around a central point, spreading water across cornfields.

Yet most of those fields are doomed. The water that nourishes them eventually will run low.

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