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The Salt
3:06 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Turning Food Waste Into Fuel Takes Gumption And Trillions Of Bacteria

The digester eggs at Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant in Brooklyn contain millions of gallons of black sludge.
Courtesy of New York City Department of Environmental Protection

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 1:12 pm

Every year, Americans send millions of tons of food to the landfill. What if you could use all of those pizza crusts and rotten vegetables to heat your home? That's already happening in one unlikely laboratory: the Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant in Brooklyn.

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Author Interviews
3:05 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Not Enough Hours In The Day? We All Feel A Little 'Overwhelmed'

Milos Luzanin iStockphoto

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 10:50 am

Sometimes there just isn't enough time to get it all done. Washington Post journalist Brigid Schulte has certainly felt that way. "I was working all the time and yet never very good at what I was doing," she tells NPR's David Greene. " ... I felt all this pressure that I was a working mom and so I was always so guilty, and I didn't want to ruin their childhood. So I was up at 2 in the morning to bake cupcakes for the Valentine's party."

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Business
3:02 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Customer Surveys Are Here To Stay. Suggestions For Improvement?

Washington Post advice columnist Judith Martin compares surveys to an insecure friend: " 'Are you sure you like me? Really? Do you like me?' And after a while you want to say, 'No! Go away!' "
iStockphoto

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 4:58 pm

Call the cable company, and an automated voice wants to ask you about the experience. Buy a taco at a fast-food chain, and the receipt says there's a chance to win $500 if you answer a few questions.

Customer surveys seem to be everywhere — something Judith Martin addressed in her Miss Manners column in January: "They are violating the first rule of business: Don't annoy the customer."

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All Tech Considered
12:03 am
Tue March 11, 2014

The Internet Will Be Everywhere In 2025, For Better Or Worse

Experts predict that people worldwide will be constantly connected by the Internet in 2025 — leading to a greater exchange of ideas but making people more susceptible to cyberattacks and manipulation.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 7:54 pm

In 2025, the Internet will enhance our awareness of the world and ourselves while diminishing privacy and allowing abusers to "make life miserable for others," according to a new report by the Pew Research Center and Elon University.

But more than anything, experts say, it will become ubiquitous and embedded in our lives — the same way electricity is today.

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The Two-Way
8:17 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Judge Allows Army Brigadier General To Enter New Plea In Assault Case

Brig. Gen. Jeffrey Sinclair leaves the courthouse for the day Wednesday at Fort Bragg in Fayetteville, N.C.
Ellen Ozier Reuters/Landov

The judge presiding over the court-martial of Brig. Gen. Jeffrey A. Sinclair gave him the opportunity to enter a new plea in the assault case.

As The New York Times reports, Col. James L. Poh said the Army may have improperly influenced the senior officer who rejected Sinclair's plea. As we reported, Sinclair, 51, a former deputy commander with the 82nd Airborne Division, offered to plea guilty to lesser charges.

The Times adds:

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The Two-Way
6:08 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Seattle Moves To Curb Uber, Other Ride-Share Services

Seattle's government has given early approval to caps on ride-share companies such as Uber. Here, Peter Faris, whose company's drivers use Uber to find customers, holds a smartphone with the ride-sharing company's app in Washington, D.C.
Paul J. Richards AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 10, 2014 6:36 pm

Uber, Lyft, and similar companies that pair people who pay for a car ride with drivers who operate outside the traditional taxi system are facing new limits in Seattle, where the City Council's Taxi Committee recently voted to cap the number of "ride-share" drivers.

The full council had been scheduled to vote on a limit of 150 drivers per ride-share company today; the vote, which has sparked intense interest in the city, has been postponed until next Monday.

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It's All Politics
6:08 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Gas Exports Debate Makes Better Domestic Politics Than Geopolitics

Lawmakers and others are calling on the Obama administration to increase natural gas exports to Europe in an attempt to punish Russian President Vladimir Putin for his Ukraine incursion.
Alexei Nikolsky AP

Originally published on Mon March 10, 2014 7:35 pm

Russia's intervention in Ukraine has sparked another debate over the Obama administration's energy policy.

Russia is a major provider of natural gas to Western Europe. That's caused some U.S. policymakers — largely but not exclusively congressional Republicans — to call on the Obama administration to clear the way for increased exports of U.S. natural gas to Europe. That's a two-fer, they argue: It would diminish Russia while helping the domestic energy industry.

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The Two-Way
6:00 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Colorado Collected $2.1 Million In January Taxes On Recreational Pot

Marijuana is stored in bins for trimming and packaging in preparation to be sold retail at 3D Cannabis Center, in Denver.
Brennan Linsley AP

Originally published on Mon March 10, 2014 6:38 pm

For the first time since it legalized recreational marijuana, Colorado is releasing revenue figures: The state made $3.5 million in taxes and fees in January.

As KUSA-TV reports, $2.1 million of that came from the sale of recreational pot and $1.4 million came from medical marijuana.

KUSA adds:

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
5:57 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Plane Lost, Uncertainties Regained

Uncertainty is the order of the day as officials in Kuala Lumpur brief the media on a missing Malaysia Airlines jet.
How Foo Yeen Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 10:56 am

We are rarely lost anymore.

In a foreign city or just a drive out of town, our GPS-enabled smartphones pin our positions on digital maps to within a few meters. We are rarely without facts anymore. Any question that has an objective answer — from the last day of the Civil War to the maximum speed of a Boeing 777 — is as close as Google. For a broad class of experience in modern life we have become very used to "knowing." Events a world away may be subject to our opinions, but rarely anymore are they cloaked in an enveloping darkness.

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The Two-Way
5:56 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

How An Aircraft Can Fall From The Sky Midflight

Brazil's navy sailors recover debris from Air France Flight 447 in the Atlantic Ocean on June 8, 2009. It took until 2012 to detail what happened in that crash.
AP

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 7:54 am

There's always a risk in flying, but the phase in which a plane is cruising at high altitude is widely considered to be safe. And that's what makes the mystery of what happened to Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 so confounding.

"Whatever happened happened quickly and resulted in a catastrophic departure from the air," Mark Rosenker, former chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board who is now a consultant with CBS news, told NPR's Melissa Block.

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