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Environment
4:26 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Coping In A Drier World: California's Drought Survival Strategy

The San Luis Reservoir in central California is the largest "off-channel" reservoir in the U.S. It is currently at less than 30 percent of its normal capacity.
Kirk Siegler NPR

Originally published on Wed October 22, 2014 6:44 pm

The past few years have been California's driest on record. Forecasters predict that punishing droughts like the current one could become the new norm.

The state uses water rationing and a 90-year-old water distribution system to cope until the rains come. The system is a huge network of dams, canals and pipes that move water from the places it rains and snows to places it typically doesn't, like farms and cities.

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The Two-Way
3:58 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

NHTSA Adds More Than 3 Million Vehicles To Air Bag Recall

Takata Ignition Systems in Schoenebeck, Germany, which makes air bags. Millions of automobiles have been recalled because of a defect in the air bags' inflators.
Jens Meyer AP

Originally published on Wed October 22, 2014 4:07 pm

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has once again changed the number of cars included in a massive and urgent recall over an inflator defect in air bags made by the Japanese company Takata.

Initially, 4.7 million vehicles were recalled, but in a list released on Wednesday, NHTSA added 3.1 million additional vehicles.

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Goats and Soda
3:50 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Drones Are Taking Pictures That Could Demystify A Malaria Surge

Researchers download images after a drone flight in Sabah, Malaysia.
Courtesy of Trends in Parasitology, Fornace et al

Aerial drones are targeting a new enemy: malaria.

Four hundred feet above a Malaysian forest, a three-foot eBee drone hovers and takes pictures with a 16-megapixel camera every 10 to 20 seconds. But it's not gathering images of the mosquitoes that transmit malaria. Even today's best drones aren't capable of such a photographic marvel. Rather, the drone is looking at a changing landscape that holds clues to the disease's spread.

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World
3:32 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Soldier, Gunman Dead After Ottawa Shooting

Originally published on Wed October 22, 2014 5:28 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

U.S.
3:32 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

How Did 'Good Girls' From Colorado Get Recruited By ISIS?

Originally published on Wed October 22, 2014 5:28 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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Latin America
3:32 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

In 'Perfect Dictatorship,' Mexican Viewers May Struggle To Decipher Fact From Fiction

Originally published on Wed October 22, 2014 5:28 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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Music Reviews
3:32 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Music Review: 'You're Dead!' By Flying Lotus

Originally published on Wed October 22, 2014 5:28 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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NPR Ed
3:32 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

The Slide Rule: A Computing Device That Put A Man On The Moon

LA Johnson NPR

Originally published on Wed October 22, 2014 5:28 pm

The protractor and the Bunsen burner. Playing the recorder in music class. Drawing arcs and circles with a compass in geometry. These tools of the education trade become part of our lives for a semester or two and then we move on.

Today, NPR Ed begins a new series examining these icons of the classroom. We start off with a device that once was essential to higher-level math, in school and in the workplace, but now has all but disappeared:

The slide rule.

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Science
3:32 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Bigger Than A T. Rex, With A Duck's Bill, Huge Arms And A Hump

Reconstruction of Deinocheirus mirificus.
Yuong-Nam Lee/Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources

Originally published on Wed October 22, 2014 7:24 pm

Scientists announced Tuesday they've solved the mystery of the Mongolian ostrich dinosaur.

The mystery began in 1965, when fossil hunters found a pair of 6-foot-long, heavily clawed arm bones in Mongolia's Gobi desert. Nobody had seen anything like them before. Now, scientists say, they've got the rest of the beast ... and dinosaur textbooks may need to be rewritten.

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Goats and Soda
3:32 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Surrogacy Storm In Thailand: A Rejected Baby, A Busy Babymaker

Thai surrogate mother Pattaramon Chanbua with her baby Gammy, who was born with Down Syndrome. An Australian couple who'd arranged for Pattaramon to serve as their surrogate rejected the child.
Nicolas Asfouri AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 22, 2014 5:28 pm

Baby Gammy might mean the end of Thailand's lucrative surrogacy business.

He's the child who was carried by a surrogate mom in Thailand-- and rejected by the Australian couple who had agreed to pay the mother $12,000. The reason: Prenatal testing showed that the baby, a twin, had Down syndrome.

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