Originally published on Thu August 8, 2013 3:04 pm
After three months, $330,000 and a high-profile media blitz, the world's first hamburger grown in a lab made its worldwide debut Monday.
The unveiling of "cultured beef," as the burger is branded, was a production worthy of the Food Network era, complete with chatty host, live-streamed video, hand-picked taste testers, a top London chef and an eager audience (made up mostly of journalists). Rarely has a single food gotten such star treatment.
Originally published on Tue August 6, 2013 5:04 am
Silly me. I thought "rent-seeking" was something only landlords did.
But economists have their own way of looking at the world. To them, rent-seeking is a term for describing how someone snags a bigger share of a pie rather than making a pie bigger, as the venerable Economistexplains it.
So, a drugmaker can be seen as a rent-seeker if it cajoles doctors to prescribe more of a particular brand of medicine at the expense of a rival pharmaceutical company's wares.
Scrutinizing the books of government agencies can turn up lavish parties or illicit trips at the taxpayers' expense. But not every investigation turns out that way. And when they don't, the hunt for waste can appear to be a waste itself.
Such appears to be the case with a recent inquiry involving NASA and Viking re-enactors. This whole saga began with an idea from Ved Chirayath, an aeronautics graduate student at Stanford University who loves photography. He was talking over what to shoot one day with a colleague, and thought of Vikings.
Originally published on Mon August 5, 2013 4:20 pm
All of a sudden, Sen. John McCain matters again.
It's not like he disappeared. But after being sidelined for a time by his 2008 defeat in the presidential election against Barack Obama, the Arizona Republican has re-emerged as one of Obama's most important allies in the Senate.
McCain took the lead in crafting immigration legislation that passed the Senate in June. Last month, he came up with the deal that prevented the Senate from abolishing judicial filibusters, allowing several Obama Cabinet and agency nominees to win confirmation.
The likes of you and I can't buy Google Glass yet. It's available only to the select developers and opinion-makers who have been permitted to spring $1,500 for the privilege of having the first one on the block. But I've seen a few around my San Francisco neighborhood among the young techies who commute down to the Google and Facebook campuses in WiFi-equipped shuttle buses or who pedal downtown to Zynga and Twitter on their fixies.
Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 3:46 pm
Rose Windows' debut album, The Sun Dogs, is steeped in '60s classic rock, recalling the heavy organ sounds of The Doors and the folk-infused flutes of Traffic. Formed in 2010 by songwriter Chris Cheveyo, the Seattle septet signed a label deal earlier this year, then put together an album that's layered with Middle Eastern influences.
Hear two songs from The Sun Dogs, a mellow combination of psychedelic folk and blues-rock instrumentation.
Country-music star Vince Gill and steel guitarist Paul Franklin have teamed up to record a new concept album called Bakersfield. Their idea is to cover hits from the 1960s and '70s by two artists who helped define the Bakersfield, Calif., country sound: Merle Haggard and the Strangers and Buck Owens and the Buckaroos. But this is no nostalgia-fest — it's a vital testament to music that retains energy and innovation.
We've all had the experience of watching a great athletic performance — from gymnast Mary Lou Retton defying gravity to Michael Jordan sinking a mind-blowing turnaround jumper — and wondered: Were they born with that talent or can you get there with hard work and practice?
Originally published on Mon August 5, 2013 12:32 pm
It was 1987 when a black teenager, Tawana Brawley, said she had been raped and kidnapped by a group of white men in Dutchess County, N.Y.
Her story of being attacked, scrawled with racial slurs, smeared with feces and left beside a road wrapped in a plastic bag made front pages across the nation — especially after the Rev. Al Sharpton took up her case.
Originally published on Mon August 5, 2013 12:21 pm
Time was when the belongings you left behind after death were tangible — furniture, jewelry, letters — and financial property, which hundreds of years of experience have taught executors how to handle. Today, some of the most valuable keys to our lives and identities exist digitally, and are technically owned by companies like Google or Facebook.
For the digital assets stored on shared servers in the cloud, legal systems have yet to catch up to help decide who controls your data when you're dead. And uniform laws around control of these assets could help.
A group of Italian researchers who have studied troves of World War II documents have found no evidence that Giovanni Palatucci, a police official long credited as the "Italian Schindler," saved the lives of 5,000 Jews.
The findings are demolishing the Italian national icon and angering supporters of the man who has been honored at Israel's Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial, and who has been put on the track to sainthood.
Originally published on Mon August 5, 2013 11:35 am
India's cartographers may soon be redrawing the country's map. If events go to plan, India will inaugurate Telangana, its 29th state, perhaps as early as next year — casting the spotlight anew on the challenges of governing a country as vast, and with a population as diverse, as India.
Telangana, on the arid Deccan plateau, is due to be carved out of the southern state of Andhra Pradesh, India's fifth most populous state, with a population of 85 million.
Julius Chambers argued numerous civil rights cases before the U.S. Supreme Court - and won them all. Host Michel Martin remembers the groundbreaking attorney, who passed away recently at the age of 76.
As fans and teams get ready for another season of football, a new study sheds light on game safety. Host Michel Martin talks with Jesse David of Edgeworth Economics about whether efforts to cut down on serious injuries are getting results.
I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. You might have caught some preseason football action over the weekend. Football season is almost here, which means it's also time to think again about how to make the game safer. We'll tell you about a new independent study about whether efforts to cut down on serious injuries, especially brain injuries, is achieving any results. That's coming up later.
A terror threat closes American embassies, and changes the political debate about intelligence gathering. Host Michel Martin talks politics with Republican strategist Ron Christie, and former Obama administration advisor Corey Ealons.
Here's a bit of news that has been making the rounds in Costa Rica for more than a week but is just now picking up steam stateside: Saying it's time for a more natural experience, Costa Rica's minister for energy and environment said they would get rid of caged animals at the country's public zoos by next year.
Four-year-old Bobby Tufts was re-elected "mayor" over the weekend in the tiny northern Minnesota community of Dorset. We say "mayor" because Dorset doesn't really have a government. It doesn't even have many people — "22 to 28, depending on whether the minister and his family are in town," according to CBS Minnesota.
Originally published on Mon August 5, 2013 9:24 am
A cyclist who commutes to work in Vancouver, Canada, was surprised and angered last week when she found a note from her office building on her bike that threatened its confiscation. Her offense? Parking in the "15-minute-only" bike rack.
"So I got a ticket from #CadillacFairview for parking my bike outside their building/my office," tweeted Molly Millar, who works in the Vancouver Sun & Province Building, also known as Granville Square.
Originally published on Mon August 5, 2013 9:17 am
The Obama administration's weekend decision to close diplomatic posts from Central Asia through the Middle East and into North Africa has led to applause from "rattled lawmakers in both parties," The Washington Post writes.
Originally published on Mon August 5, 2013 4:49 pm
(We most recently updated this post at 6:48 p.m. ET.)
New York Yankees' slugger Alex Rodriguez, one of baseball's brightest stars and its highest-paid player, will be suspended through the 2014 regular season because he violated parts of baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program, the league said today.