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5:21 am
Fri February 28, 2014

Upheaval In Ukraine Shifts To Crimea Peninsula

Originally published on Fri February 28, 2014 7:27 am

Armed men are patrolling two airports in the Ukrainian province of Crimea, and Ukraine's acting president is blaming Russia. Russia says its troops have nothing to do with it.

NPR Story
5:21 am
Fri February 28, 2014

13 Workers Exposed To Radiation At N.M. Nuclear Waste Dump

A hunk of salt from the underground nuclear waste dump in Carlsbad, New Mexico. A piece of salt is believed to have fallen from a cavern ceiling and crushed drums of waste.
Meg Vogel/NPR

Originally published on Fri February 28, 2014 1:21 pm

There's never a good week for nuclear waste, but this week has been a particularly bad one. Officials at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in New Mexico have disclosed that 13 employees inhaled radioactive material after a major accident earlier this month.

While there's no risk to the public and the exposed workers did not need immediate medical treatment, the incident is shaping up to be a major setback for the nation's only dedicated nuclear waste dump.

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NPR Story
5:21 am
Fri February 28, 2014

Action Hero Liam Neeson Stars In 'Non-Stop'

Originally published on Fri February 28, 2014 7:27 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Now any day of the week is a good time to watch Liam Neeson play an action hero. He famously chased down bad guys and blew things up in the movie "Taken" and its sequel a few years back. Los Angeles Times and MORNING EDITION film critic Kenneth Turan has this review of "Non-Stop," Neeson's latest action flick.

KENNETH TURAN: "Non-Stop" is a crisp, efficient thriller that benefits from the intangibles Liam Neeson brings to a role.

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NPR Story
5:21 am
Fri February 28, 2014

On Broadway, Thursday Is The New Wednesday.

Originally published on Fri February 28, 2014 7:27 am

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

On Broadway, Thursday is about to become the new Wednesday.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG FROM THE MOVIE, "PHANTOM OF THE OPERA")

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: (Singing in a foreign language)

GREENE: Several shows, including the "Phantom of the Opera," plan to move their traditional Wednesday matinee to Thursday. Wednesday afternoon performances have never been huge money makers, and some Broadway executives think Thursday matinees will draw in tourists coming for a good long weekend in New York.

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Shots - Health News
3:31 am
Fri February 28, 2014

Connecticut Looks To Sell Its Obamacare Exchange To Other States

Kevin Counihan, CEO of Connecticut's health insurance exchange, hopes to be able to market their expertise.
Jeff Cohen/NPR

Originally published on Fri February 28, 2014 11:14 am

Kevin Counihan, the CEO of Access Health CT, is walking through the 15th floor of a downtown Hartford office building that houses Connecticut's health insurance marketplace. He passes the legal department, the IT folks and the consultants, then stops in front of three large, wall-mounted computer screens.

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All Tech Considered
3:30 am
Fri February 28, 2014

A Smartphone That Tries To Slip You Off The Grid

The Blackphone, an Android software-based mobile, encrypts texts, voice calls and video chats.
Albert Gea Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Mon March 3, 2014 10:24 am

Mike Janke used to be a Navy SEAL sniper. These days he's taking on the government and corporate America. He's the founder of Blackphone, an Android-based smartphone with privacy as its main selling point.

It's not NSA-proof — in that everything is hackable if you try hard enough. But Janke says it's taking on the entire mobile economy that lets law enforcement and companies in way too easily.

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Planet Money
3:28 am
Fri February 28, 2014

An Old Law, A Snowy Winter, And A Modern-Day Salt Shortage

Jay Field MPBN Radio

Originally published on Fri February 28, 2014 11:38 am

There were so many winter storms in New Jersey this year that the state nearly ran out of the salt used to melt snow and ice on the roads.

State officials thought they had found a solution when they discovered an extra 40,000 tons of rock salt for sale up in Searsport, Maine.

The state bought the salt but ran into problems getting it to New Jersey — despite the fact that there was an enormous, empty cargo ship, sitting at the Searsport port, headed down to Newark.

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Parallels
3:25 am
Fri February 28, 2014

Secretary Of State Kerry Says Ukraine Is Not A 'Cold War Story'

An anti-Yanukovych protester walks past a barricade in Independence Square, the epicenter of the country's current unrest, in Kiev, Ukraine, on Wednesday.
Emilio Morenatti AP

Originally published on Fri February 28, 2014 10:49 am

Ukraine's ousted president, Viktor Yanukovych, emerged Friday to give a news conference on Russian soil, not far from the Ukraine border. Russia is not only giving Yanukovych shelter — it's also carrying out military exercises that have raised alarms in Washington.

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The Salt
3:21 am
Fri February 28, 2014

Drought Could Dry Up Nevada Dairy Farmers' Expansion Plans

There are about 2,000 dairy cows on Pete Olsen's fifth-generation farm in northern Nevada. A new milk processing plant is now putting pressure on Olsen and other dairy farmers to expand the size of their herds. But with the ongoing drought, farmers are struggling to get enough feed for the cows they already have.
Kirk Siegler/NPR

Originally published on Fri February 28, 2014 3:13 pm

When Pete Olsen talks about drought on his fifth-generation dairy farm in Fallon, Nev., he's really talking about the snowpack 60 miles to the west in the Sierra Nevada.

The Sierras, Olsen says, are their lifeblood.

That is, the snowmelt from them feeds the Truckee and Carson rivers and a tangle of reservoirs and canals that make this desert bloom. Some of the highest-grade alfalfa in the world is grown here. And it makes perfect feed for dairy cows, because it's rich in nutrients.

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Oscars 2014: The 86th Annual Academy Awards
3:20 am
Fri February 28, 2014

Keen Eyes, Uncanny Instincts Keep Films In Sharp Focus

On location for Walk of Shame, camera crew members Larry Nielsen (center) and Milan "Miki" Janicin (right) help set up a crane shot. The wireless focus remote Nielsen will use is hanging from that purple carabiner on his jacket.
Cindy Carpien NPR

Originally published on Fri February 28, 2014 2:41 pm

You won't believe it — I didn't — but the person responsible for keeping each and every shot of a movie in focus never looks through a camera lens.

"No," says focus puller Baird Steptoe. "We do not look through the camera at all."

Steptoe has worked as a first assistant cameraman on films from The Sixth Sense to Thor to last year's Grownups Two. He says he's learned to judge distances — precise distances — with his naked eye alone.

"I mean, I can tell you roughly from you to me right now," he says. "I would say about 2-11."

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