This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Ira Flatow. After the Deepwater Horizon spill, BP poured nearly two million gallons of dispersants into the Gulf of Mexico. The goal, of course, is breaking up oil slicks, making them dissolve into ocean waters, sort of like how you squirt dish soap on a greasy frying pan to get the oil to wash away with the water.
Imagine walking into Jamba Juice for your favorite smoothie fix, and when it's time to pay, instead of pulling out cash or a credit card, you just tap your phone on a reader, and you're ready to go. Better yet, when you tapped your phone to pay it, it also redeems an electronic coupon stored in your phone, so you end up paying even less. Yeah. Well, people in fact can already do this at Jamba Juice using Google Wallet on certain Android phones. You can use it at Macy's, Bloomingdales, Duane Reade.
In his book, Reinventing Discovery: The New Era of Networked Science, Physicist Michael Nielsen discusses why scientists jealously guard their data and are slow to adopt online tools for collaboration. Nielsen talks about why attempts to create science wikipedias have failed.
Glory Ndudi, a Christian, and her five children board a bus headed out of town on Wednesday. The recent bomb attacks that have targeted churches in Kano, Nigeria, have led to an exodus of Christians from the city.
Credit Sunday Alamba / AP
A radical Islamic group, Boko Haram, carried out a series of bombings in Kano, in northern Nigeria, including an attack on police headquarters, shown in this photo from Jan. 22.
The New Road bus station in the heart of Kano is a scene of bedlam.
Men, women and children are milling around, with huge bundles and baggage in all shapes and sizes, waiting to be loaded onto half a dozen buses. Others are already onboard. They're in a desperate hurry to head south, leaving behind this troubled city in the north of Nigeria.
Originally published on Fri January 27, 2012 10:48 am
The Defense Department has spent close to $3 billion since 2007 to treat and study traumatic brain injuries and post traumatic stress disorder — the leading injuries suffered by U.S. military personnel in Iraq and Afghanistan. But a federal investigation finds that the department's programs are so disorganized that it's difficult to figure out how the money has been spent.
Originally published on Fri January 27, 2012 12:11 pm
For more than a decade, Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul has had to deal with questions about why a newsletter he published in the 1980s and '90s included some racist writings. He's said more than once that, while he takes responsibility for what was in the newsletters, he didn't pay enough attention to what was printed, wasn't aware of the racist messages at the time and rejects them.
Originally published on Fri January 27, 2012 10:53 am
In election season, conventional wisdom holds that a costly, drawn-out primary fight hurts a nominee in the general election.
It's a notion that appeals to common sense. After all, the thinking goes, if a boxer endures nine rounds with a formidable challenger and immediately steps back into the ring with a well-rested heavyweight, that can't be good.
Somehow 35.5 pounds of cocaine wrapped in a fake diplomatic sack made it to the United Nations' headquarters in New York. The AFP reports that U.N. officials said on Thursday that the cocaine had been shipped from Mexico through DHL, which handles U.N. mail.
It isn't a long shot that David Milch's newest series for HBO, called Luck, will be on par with his HBO series Deadwood. It's a sure thing. HBO sent out all nine episodes of the show's first season for preview, so there's no guesswork here.
For someone who has spent the majority of his career making comedies, Woody Allen sees the world — and his lifelong profession — through a surprisingly dark lens.
"Life is a terrible trial, and very harsh and very full of suffering ... [Film] is a different kind of pain. Making a movie is a great distraction from the real agonies of the world," Allen tells Terry Gross.
Violence is increasing in Syria, with activists reporting multiple clashes in cities. The U.N. Security Council is meeting Friday to discuss a resolution on the conflict there. It's also likely to ask President Bashar Assad to step down.
Twitter announced, last night, that it now has the ability to block content by country. This means, for example, that if a Tweet breaks a German law, Twitter can now block it in Germany but leave it up in the rest of the world.
Reporter's Notebook: NPR photographer Becky Lettenberger just got back from the Sunshine State. She and reporter Liz Halloran talked with Floridians about the issues of this election season — and, between conversations, soaked up the sun and scenes of that quirky state.
Costa Crociere SpA came to an agreement with several consumer groups and is offering 11,000 euros or $14,460 to each of the passengers of the cruise ship that ran aground off the Italian coast, earlier this month.
The Toronto Sun explains the money is for passengers who were uninjured and is to pay for "for items lost and any psychological damages." The cruise line will also refund the cost of the cruise and any travel costs that resulted from the crash.
People gather at the scene of a car bomb attack in Zafaraniyah, Baghdad, Iraq on Friday. A suicide bomber detonated an explosives-packed car near a funeral procession killing and injuring dozens of Iraqis, police said.
Originally published on Mon January 30, 2012 9:10 am
We still don't know who'll win the Florida primary Tuesday, but after the past two debates it seems far likelier to be Mitt Romney.
Why? Because Newt Gingrich had vaulted from the margins to the forefront of the Republican presidential race in South Carolina on the strength of two debate performances. And that weapon has ceased to work in his favor.
The NBC and CNN debates this week in Tampa and Jacksonville went a long way toward neutralizing the impression created by debates the previous week in Myrtle Beach and Charleston.
The transport minister in Australia denounced a political opponent. He said the opponent wasn't interested in fixing a problem, only in making people "afraid of it" and telling them "who's to blame for it." Critics note Michael Douglas used that line in Aaron Sorkin's movie The American President.
Egyptian authorities are preventing six Americans, including the son of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, from leaving the country. They work for non-governmental agencies that were raided by Egyptian security forces last month.
A Los Angeles restaurant famous for its 9 cent cup of coffee is raising the price to 45 cents -– 50 cents with tax. Management at Philippe the Original told the Los Angeles Times they can no longer keep up with the cost of coffee.
After more than a century of providing services for immigrants and the poor, the organization founded by Nobel Peace Prize winner Jane Addams is shutting down. The Jane Addams Hull House Association has struggled financially in recent years.
The crippled cruise ship off the coast of Italy needs to be removed from the area where it ran aground. Joel Farrell, president and founder of Resolve Marine has been salvaging vessels for more than 30 years. Renee Montagne asks him to explain how the half-submerged cruise ship can be salvaged.
Teri Schultz is in Brussels and reports on EU efforts to strengthen online protections of personal information.