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2:29pm

Mon July 7, 2014
All Tech Considered

We Asked, You Answered: Going To Extremes To Disconnect On Vacation

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 8:08 am

Our readers wrote in on how they tried to take a vacation from their smartphones.
Christian Wheatley iStockphoto

Summer is a great time to take a break from some of the stressors in our lives. For many of us, that stress is brought on by too much screen time and the pressure to stay connected.

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4:56pm

Sun July 6, 2014
Around the Nation

Programs Target Poverty In Obama's 5 'Promise Zones'

Originally published on Mon July 7, 2014 9:02 am

People line up at the FamilySource Center in Los Angeles, an organization in one of President Obama's five designated "Promise Zones" that aims to help fight poverty in the area.
Priska Neely NPR

Five areas across the country have been designated as "Promise Zones" by the federal government. These zones, announced by President Obama in January, are intended to tackle poverty by focusing on individual urban neighborhoods and rural areas.

In the five Promise Zones — located in Philadelphia, San Antonio, southeastern Kentucky, the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma and Los Angeles — the idea is to basically carpet-bomb the neighborhoods with programs like after-school classes, GED courses and job training to turn those areas around.

What Happens In The Zone?

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3:33pm

Sun July 6, 2014
Movie Interviews

The Life And Death Of 'The Internet's Own Boy'

Originally published on Mon July 7, 2014 6:48 am

Aaron Swartz was heavily involved in the popular 2012 campaign to prevent the passage of the federal Stop Online Piracy Act, or SOPA.
Quinn Norton Falco Ink Publicity

Aaron Swartz was a programmer, a hacker, a freedom of information activist — and a casualty of suicide.

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3:14pm

Sat July 5, 2014
Author Interviews

Release Of 'Echo's Bones' Resurrects Beckett's Rejected Work

Originally published on Sat July 5, 2014 5:14 pm

Playwright and writer Samuel Beckett, shown here around 1970, wrote Echo's Bones at his editor's request — only to have it cut from his first collection.
Reg Lancaster Getty Images

Playwright and author Samuel Beckett, who died 25 years ago, wrote lasting works of literature like Waiting for Godot and Endgame. But a previously unpublished short story of his — now being released for the first time — was not so appreciated.

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2:36pm

Fri July 4, 2014
Around the Nation

Tests And Tales Of Becoming A U.S. Citizen

Originally published on Sun July 6, 2014 4:27 pm

Hector Colon (left) and Victor Duran, both of the Dominican Republic, wave American flags after being sworn in during a naturalization ceremony in Atlanta on Tuesday.
David Goldman AP

On Independence Day, ceremonial swearing-in ceremonies of new citizens are traditional — a celebration of the country's past and its evolving future. On Friday, 7,500 people from across the country will take the Oath of Allegiance and become naturalized U.S. citizens.

Most foreign citizens who live in the U.S. are here legally but are not citizens. So on the anniversary of the day when Americans declared themselves no longer subjects of the King of England, what does citizenship means to those who do choose to naturalize?

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2:00pm

Fri July 4, 2014
Men In America

From Axes To Razors, The Stuff That Makes You Feel Manly

Originally published on Sun July 6, 2014 4:27 pm

"I work with hand tools every day but few feel as good, or as manly, as a well cared for ax," says Cory, via Instagram.
Cory Instagram

This story is part of All Things Considered's "Men in America" series.

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2:06pm

Wed July 2, 2014
Parallels

Ask Me Anything: Mideast Correspondent Emily Harris Answers

Originally published on Wed July 2, 2014 4:25 pm

Emily Harris is NPR's international correspondent based in Jerusalem.
Stephanie Federico NPR

Just over a year ago, NPR's Emily Harris packed up and moved to Jerusalem, where she covers plenty of politics and everything else related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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6:07am

Wed July 2, 2014
The Race Card Project: Six-Word Essays

A Woman Wrestles With A Disturbing Family Memento

Originally published on Wed July 2, 2014 12:15 pm

Carol Zachary's grandfather, Herbert Fleming, a county auditor, was required to attend Montana's first legal triple-hanging in a barn in Meagher County, Mont., in 1917. Fleming was one of approximately 60 witnesses that day.
Courtesy of Carol Zachary

NPR continues a series of conversations about The Race Card Project, where thousands of people have submitted their thoughts on race and cultural identity in six words. Every so often NPR Host/Special Correspondent Michele Norris dips into those stories to explore issues surrounding race and cultural identity for Morning Edition.

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3:35pm

Mon June 30, 2014
Technology

Why 140 Characters, When One Will Do? Tracing The Emoji Evolution

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 5:01 pm

NPR

You may have heard that 250 more emojis, the little smiley face icons and other symbols you can send in text messages, are coming to a cellphone near you.

The story of the emoji starts in Japan in the mid-1990s. Back then, pagers were all the rage with teenagers.

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4:45pm

Sun June 29, 2014
Business

For Tipped Workers, A Different Minimum Wage Battle

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 6:14 am

States may have their own higher wage laws, but the federal minimum wage for tipped workers is $2.13 an hour.
AP

The federal minimum wage for tipped workers has been $2.13 since 1991. That pay rate tends to get lost in the larger debate over whether to raise the national minimum wage for nontipped workers, which is $7.25 an hour.

In theory, the money from tips should make up the difference in pay — and then some. But according to a White House report, tipped workers are more than twice as likely as other workers to experience poverty.

Living On Tips

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4:11pm

Sun June 29, 2014
Movie Interviews

Behind Optimus Prime (And Eeyore), One Man's Signature Voice

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 6:20 am

Voice actor Peter Cullen arrives at the premiere of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen in June 2009.
Kevin Winter Getty Images

Transformers: Age of Extinction has smashed its way to the No. 1 spot at the box office. Director Michael Bay's film franchise has consistently topped charts since the first film arrived in theaters in 2007.

The live-action films have embraced the latest in visual affects — but the movies have also called back to the series' past, through the voice of Peter Cullen.

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3:07pm

Sun June 29, 2014
The Impact of War

For U.S. Vets, Iraq's Newest Conflict Awakens Complex Emotions

Originally published on Wed July 2, 2014 6:45 am

A decade ago, U.S. soldiers were fighting and rebuilding in the Iraqi cities of Mosul and Tikrit. The past few weeks have seen those cities, among others, fall to the Sunni militant group ISIS. Here, a member of the Kurdish Peshmerga forces stands guard Thursday near an ISIS checkpoint in Mosul.
Karim Sahib AFP/Getty Images

In Iraq this weekend, government forces launched an offensive against the Sunni militant group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS. On Sunday, the government said it was using Russian-made jets to attack Sunni militants in the northern cities of Tikrit, the hometown of the late dictator Saddam Hussein, and Mosul. Both cities remain under insurgent control.

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4:22pm

Sat June 28, 2014
Code Switch

'Everything I Never Told You' Exposed In Biracial Family's Loss

Everything I Never Told You is Celeste Ng's debut novel about a Chinese-American family living in 1970s Ohio. She is currently working on a second novel and a collection of short stories.
Kevin Day The Penguin Press

It's May, 1977, in small-town Ohio, and the Lee family is sitting down at breakfast. James is Chinese-American and Marilyn is white, and they have three children — two girls and a boy. But on this day, their middle child Lydia, who is also their favorite, is nowhere to be found.

That's how Celeste Ng's new novel, Everything I Never Told You, begins.

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3:26pm

Sat June 28, 2014
All Tech Considered

Modern Video Games Go Beyond 'Jumping On Blocks'

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 10:35 am

The video game BioShock Infinite received widespread praise for having a rich narrative packed with philosophy when it debuted last year. The game sold millions of copies.

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4:14pm

Mon June 23, 2014
Men In America

The New American Man Doesn't Look Like His Father

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 9:36 am

While life has changed significantly for American men in the past half-century, notions of masculinity remain tied to those that may have been passed down from this father to the son on his shoulders.
Evans/Three Lions Getty Images

This summer, All Things Considered is exploring what it means to be a man in America today. In some ways, the picture for men has changed dramatically over the past 50 years. More women than men are going to college, and the economy is moving away from jobs that traditionally favored men, like manufacturing and mining. Attitudes have also changed on the social front, with young men having more egalitarian attitudes toward women and expectations of being involved fathers.

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3:31pm

Mon June 23, 2014
All Tech Considered

Digital Detox, Step 1: Step Away From The Phone

Originally published on Wed June 25, 2014 9:15 am

Take a break from catching up on social media and emails — even if it's only for a few days.
iStockphoto

The summer months are upon us again. It's the season to sit outside, decompress and finally put those accumulated sick days to good use: It's vacation season.

Vacation traditionally means taking a break from all of the stresses, worries and routines of our daily lives. We put the work down in order to pick up a cool drink and a new novel.

So let's make sure we have everything:

Flip-flops? Check.

Suntan lotion? Check.

Cellphone? Laptop? iPad? Hmm.

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3:09pm

Sun June 22, 2014
Business

Puma's Pink And Blue Cleats Make A Bold Play At The World Cup

Originally published on Sun June 22, 2014 4:25 pm

Italy's Mario Balotelli sports Puma's new evoPOWER Tricks cleats.
Frank Augstein AP

Athletes aren't the only ones battling for supremacy on the World Cup pitch: Shoe brands are fighting for glory, too.

For the most part, it's the fluorescent Nike Vapors versus the Adidas Adizero Battle Pack cleats. But while those brands dominate the soccer market, Kyle Stock of Bloomberg Businessweek says Puma has a counterattack: the mismatched pink and blue soccer cleats called Tricks.

"You see a lot of yellows out there and oranges and reds, but in the blur of the feet, you notice [the Tricks]," Stock tells NPR's Arun Rath.

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1:39am

Fri June 20, 2014
StoryCorps

Inheriting A Rare Skin Condition, And The Ability To Laugh About It

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 7:03 am

On a visit to StoryCorps, Cheri Lindsay, 25, and Phillip Lindsay, 52, discussed a rare skin condition they share, and how they both have coped.
StoryCorps

People with vitiligo gradually lose pigment in their skin, often in patches that appear randomly and grow over time.

But that wasn't the case for Cheri Lindsay. The white pigment on her skin spread rapidly across her body and around her eyes, "like a mask," over the past four years, she says.

She imagines that she's dealt with it better than most, in part because of the example set by her father.

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11:38am

Wed June 18, 2014
Shots - Health News

More EMTs Doing House Calls, Not Just ER Transport

Originally published on Tue June 17, 2014 2:03 pm

An unidentified woman is wheeled into a hospital by members of the Bedford-Stuyvesant Volunteer Ambulance Corps (BSVAC) on June 21, 2013 in the Brooklyn borough New York City. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

It’s being called the house call of the future: ambulance crews who rush when you call 9-1-1, but instead of taking you to the emergency room, they treat you at home.

Community paramedicine, as it’s called, is a growing trend across the country. It’s aim is to bring down hospital costs, but there are concerns about who’s going to end up paying for the service.

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4:31pm

Tue June 17, 2014
Environment

Plastics Don't Disappear, But They Do End Up In Seabirds' Bellies

Originally published on Tue June 17, 2014 6:33 pm

Plastic floats ashore in Jakarta, Indonesia.
Bay Ismoyo AFP/Getty Images

The vast majority of debris in the ocean — about 75 percent of it — is made of plastic. It can consist of anything from plastic bottles to packaging materials, but whatever form it takes, it doesn't go away easily.

While plastic may break down into smaller and smaller pieces, some as small as grains of sand, these pieces are never truly biodegradable. The plastic bits, some small enough that they're called microplastics, threaten marine life like fish and birds, explains Richard Thompson, a professor of marine biology at Plymouth University in the U.K.

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