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Cheaper jet fuel prices are starting to translate into lower airfares, which may begin prompting infrequent fliers to plan holiday travel.

And cheaper technology may be turning drones into affordable Christmas presents. In fact, one FAA official says a million new flying robots may be under Christmas trees this year as a result of price drops.

Now let's add that up and consider what it could mean for the last week of December:

Inexperienced travelers will be crowding airport security lines. And a million inexperienced operators will be sending up drones.

Power Of Sour: How Tart Is Reclaiming Turf From Sweet

47 minutes ago

Back in the 1800s, sour and sweet were a hot item. Americans drank shrubs and switchels — refreshing mixes of vinegar, water, spices lightly sweetened with honey, sugar or molasses. Southern households preserved their fruits in vinegar. And some of the nation's most popular berries were tangy — like the famed Klondike strawberry and tart cherries that came in eight different varieties. But by the middle of the 20th century, these tart-sweet delights had all but vanished.

Stepping off his recent flight from Boston at Chicago's O'Hare Airport, education consultant Debashis Sengupta looked a little surprised.

"The flight today was actually quite nice," says Sengupta. "No problems at all, in fact, not something I was expecting from United."

This frequent flier says an uneventful, on-time flight on United is the exception, not the rule.

Consumer advocate and former presidential candidate Ralph Nader recently opened a museum filled with items like defective toys and unsafe machines all tied together under a unifying theme: tort law.

Unless you're a lawyer, you might not quite know the exact meaning of the word tort.

"It's a wrongful injury," Nader says. "It's a wrongful act that injures people and deserves a remedy."

For the past 10 years, doctors have used a genetic test to decide which patients may be able to skip chemotherapy after surgery for breast cancer.

Now a study confirms that this test, called Oncotype DX, works well for a small group of patients. But a longer, follow-up study is needed to draw conclusions for a fuller range of patients with riskier tumors.

Oncotype DX analyzes 21 genes in the tumor to estimate a woman's risk of the cancer coming back after surgery.

The fact that a huge amount of food is wasted each year will be no surprise to anybody in the West. What might come as a surprise is that a large percentage of global food waste occurs in developing countries — primarily because of poor infrastructure and dysfunctional distribution networks.

As much as half of the food grown or produced in the developing world simply never makes it to market. And that loss is costing billions of dollars and blighting countless lives.

Sen. Chuck Grassley is asking federal investigators to give him the names of officials at the American Red Cross who did not cooperate with the government's recent inquiry into the charity.

Planetary scientists have announced that there is evidence that liquid salt water flows on present-day Mars. The discovery was made by looking at images captured by NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Jim Green, director of the Planetary Science Division at NASA, discusses the findings with Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson.


Panyia Vang, a 22-year-old woman originally from Laos, is seeking $450,000 from the Hmong man from Minnesota who she says traveled to her country and enticed her with promises of movie stardom when she was 14.

Instead, Vang says the man raped her, resulting in a pregnancy. Allegedly, he threatened to deny her visitation rights to their child if she didn’t continue to have sex with him.

There are wardrobe malfunctions and then there's this.

Around mile 10 of the 26.2-mile Berlin marathon on Sunday, elite runner Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya began to have some serious shoe trouble. The neon-yellow insoles of his custom-made Nikes slipped partially out of his shoes; as he crossed the finish line, they were flapping at his ankles, according to the Berlin marathon website.

On August 1, 1966, a man named Charles Whitman climbed to the top of the University of Texas clock tower and started shooting. When the carnage ended, 16 people were dead and 32 were left wounded. The dead included Whitman, who had already killed his wife and mother prior to opening fire on campus.

About half an hour after takeoff from Philadelphia and a grueling, nine-day visit to Cuba and the United States, Pope Francis looked tired Sunday night when he appeared before reporters. He suffers from sciatica, and it was visible this week that he was having difficulty walking up stairs and standing for a long time.

Nevertheless, he took questions for close to an hour.

The pope was asked about an issue that had angered victims of clerical sex abuse: Why did he choose to show strong compassion for American bishops in one of his first speeches in the U.S.?

A former prison worker who helped two convicted murders escape from a maximum-security prison in upstate New York was sentenced Monday to up to seven years behind bars.

Under the terms of a plea deal, Joyce Mitchell, 51, faces a minimum sentence of 2 years and 4 months in prison. She pleaded guilty to charges stemming from her role in providing convicted killers Richard Matt and David Sweat with tools such as hacksaws, drill bits and lighted eyeglasses ahead of their June 6 prison break.

Palliative care nurse Theresa Brown is healthy, and so are her loved ones, and yet, she feels keenly connected to death. "I have a deep awareness after working in oncology that fortunes can change on a dime," she tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "Enjoy the good when you have it, because that really is a blessing."

Brown is the author of The Shift, which follows four patients during the course of a 12-hour shift in a hospital cancer ward. A former oncology nurse, Brown now provides patients with in-home, end-of-life care.

Copyright 2015 Fresh Air. To see more, visit



After five weeks, Banksy's "bemusement park" art exhibit, Dismaland, is closing permanently. What's more, the anonymous artist announced on Dismaland's website that the structures and material from the park will be sent to a refugee camp in France.

The short announcement read, "All the timber and fixtures from Dismaland are being sent to the 'jungle' refugee camp near Calais to build shelters. No online tickets will be available."

Here's something you probably knew: Asians have become the fastest-growing minority in this country.

Today, the Pew Research Center released a new analysis that shows that by 2055, Asians will pass Latinos as the largest immigrant group in the country.

Here's a graphic that shows past, present and projected future pivots in the country's immigrant population:

The U.N. knows what it needs to do. But can it do it all?

Days after he was named the subject of a criminal investigation, FIFA President Sepp Blatter says he won't step down from soccer's governing body. In a statement released by his lawyer, Blatter says he has "done nothing illegal or improper."

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit



Scientists have caught Mars crying salty tears.

Photos from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter show dark streaks flowing down Martian slopes. The streaks appear in sunny spots or when the weather is warm, and they fade when the temperature drops.

German prosecutors announced Monday that they have begun a criminal investigation of Martin Winterkorn, the former Volkswagen CEO who stepped down last week amid a widening scandal involving the automaker's use of technology that cheats emissions tests.

The investigation will focus on whether fraud was committed through the sale of diesel-powered vehicles that claimed to be eco-friendly by highlighting manipulated emissions data. It also aims to find out who had knowledge of and was responsible for the emissions-rigging.

There's something almost Name That Tune-ish about the way the GOP candidates are talking about tax brackets these days. Currently, there are seven. Donald Trump wants four. Jeb Bush says he can get them down to three. Chris Christie and Marco Rubio want two. Ben Carson does them one better — one 10 percent rate, inspired by the Bible.

On any given day, about half a million children are living in foster care. They've been removed from violent or abusive households; many suffer physical and mental health problems that have gone untreated.

Their need is acute but the response is often dangerously slow, according to a policy statement from the American Academy of Pediatrics. The recommendations, published Monday in the journal Pediatrics, are intended as a wake-up call for pediatricians who care for foster kids.

This post was last updated at 11:15 a.m. ET.

Just before a scheduled meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, President Obama delivered an impassioned defense of democracy, diplomacy and the fight toward the common good.

Many earthlings were treated to a rare sight last night, as a "supermoon" coincided with a lunar eclipse. It was a bad night to have clouds obscuring the view, as the last total eclipse that had these qualities occurred in 1982, and the next won't happen until 2033.

This lunar eclipse ticked many boxes for sky watchers: It was a supermoon, when the moon is both full and in perigee, or close to Earth, making it loom large in our sky. It was also a blood moon (the fourth and final lunar eclipse). And because it occurred days after the fall equinox, this was also the harvest moon.

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Ousted from the London 2012 Games by the International Olympic Committee, baseball and softball might get a reprieve, thanks to a proposal from Tokyo 2020 Olympics organizers. They'd also like to see skateboarding and surfing — but not bowling.

Baseball and softball were on a list of five sports released by the Tokyo Organizing Committee on Monday, under a new Olympics process that allows hosting countries to propose sports that reflect their own culture.

An Extra Point That's Drawn Extra Attention

10 hours ago

An extra point in football is usually uneventful, a mere afterthought.

But in Texas, kicker Luis Aranda of Midland's Robert E. Lee High School turned his attempt into a viral video.

His kick cleared the defensive line, but was far to low. The ball smacked a referee in the head, knocking off his cap. The ball ricocheted upward, hitting the crossbar and bouncing over for a successful attempt.

Robert E. Lee went on to beat El Dorado, of El Paso, 35-16.

Ron Turiello's daughter, Grace, seemed unusually alert even as a newborn.

At 7 months or so, she showed an interest in categorizing objects: She'd take a drawing of an elephant in a picture book, say, and match it to a stuffed elephant and a realistic plastic elephant.

At 5 or 6 years old, when snorkeling with her family in Hawaii, she identified a passing fish correctly as a Heller's barracuda, then added, "Where are the rest? They usually travel in schools."