There's a lot of talk in politics about the desirability of American manufacturing and "green" jobs. President Obama talks about both often, especially wind turbines and long-lasting batteries that are made on U.S. soil.
Robert Siegel, host of All Things Considered, recently visited a Massachusetts factory that makes a product that hits those same parameters. It's arguably a force for sustainability, nearly 40 Americans assemble it, and it's an interesting case study in innovation: the high-speed hand dryer.
It's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Audie Cornish.
ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:
I'm Robert Siegel. And it's time now for All Tech Considered.
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SIEGEL: First up, our look ahead at the week's tech news, and we're going to focus on Colorado, where lawmakers will begin debating a bill that would allow driverless cars in the state. NPR's Laura Sydell joins me now to talk about it. And, Laura, Colorado is one of several states to take up legislation on driverless cars. Why now?
Iranian authorities are using cyberpolice units to crack down on people who try to access banned websites, including social media sites such as Facebook. Here, Iranians use computers at an Internet cafe in Tehran in January.
Credit Behrouz Mehri / AFP/Getty Images
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, shown here in 2009, recently set up a Facebook page, though the Iranian government bans ordinary Iranians from access to Facebook and other social media sites.
When Iran's supreme leader got a Facebook page in December, Iranians sat up and blinked.
Some thought it was a fake, finding it hard to believe that Ayatollah Ali Khamenei would be using a technology that his own government blocks. A U.S. State Department spokeswoman skeptically wondered how many "likes" it would attract.
But some of Khamenei's supporters quickly rallied behind the move, which first came to light in a reference on — you guessed it — the ayatollah's Twitter account.
Movies like The Shining frighten most of us, but some brain-damaged people feel no fear when they watch a scary film. However, an unseen threat — air with a high level of carbon dioxide — produces a surprising result.
Credit Corey Feinstein / Iowa Neurological Patient Registry, University of Iowa, Courtesy of Nature
In these brain scans, amygdala damage can be seen in three patients (known as SM, AM and BG) with Urbach-Wiethe disease. See the dark spots within the areas circled in red. A healthy person is shown (left) for comparison.
Barrington Irving , a 23-year-old Jamaican-born pilot, at a news conference at Opa-locka Airport Wednesday, June 27, 2007, ending a three-month journey he said would make him the youngest person to fly around the world alone.
Credit Alan Diaz / AP
Irving returned to the Miami-area city he left March 23, 2007 in a Columbia 400 built of donated parts. He was optimistic his 27,000-mile continent-hopping trip aboard the "Inspiration" would live up to the plane's name and motivate young people _ especially minorities.
This Black History Month, Tell Me More is taking a look at African Americans in the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and math) who are inspiring future generations.
Today, Barrington Irving shares how his sky high dreams became a reality. A chance encounter in his parents' bookstore put him on a path that would make him the youngest person and first African American to fly solo around the world.
States like Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Ohio have seen an increase in oil and gas drilling recently. And this process, hydraulic fracturing or fracking, has created a lot of something else: liquid waste. Now, one disposal company has come up with a controversial plan for transporting that waste, taking it off trucks and putting it, instead, on barges.
That proposal is triggering what has become yet another safety debate between the drilling industry and some environmentalists.
Refrigerators, foam buoys and even ketchup bottles are piling up on Alaska's beaches. Almost two years after the devastating Japanese tsunami, its debris and rubbish are fouling the coastlines of many states — especially in Alaska.
At the state's Montague Island beach, the nearly 80 miles of rugged wilderness looks pristine from a helicopter a few thousand feet up. But when you descend, globs of foam come into view.