The Obama administration is announcing a major new initiative to boost investments in rural Africa in hopes of lifting millions out of poverty. Several African leaders are in Washington, D.C., for the announcement, which comes as President Obama hosts leaders of the Group of Eight in Maryland. Food security is a key agenda item.
When Terry Walls of Springfield, Mo., decided to go back to college at age 52, he wanted to put to rest a family rumor. He had heard his mother was denied admission to Missouri State University, and he was pointed toward Meyer Library on the MSU campus for answers.
There, he discovered an eloquent letter typed on fragile, onion-skin paper and signed with his mother's maiden name: Mary Jean Price. It was dated Oct. 2, 1950, and it was addressed to the university registrar:
For many people, Bike to Work Day (which is today) is a reason to put air in their bike's tires and see if their chain is too rusty to get them to work on time. And as a growing list of photographs shows, many people who follow NPR online also ride to work.
A private spaceship owned by a company called SpaceX is scheduled to blast off from Cape Canaveral in Florida early Saturday morning.
If all goes well, the unmanned capsule will rocket up on a mission to deliver food and other supplies to the International Space Station, becoming the first commercial spacecraft to visit the outpost.
The highly anticipated mission could mark the beginning of what some say could be a new era in spaceflight, with private companies operating taxi services that could start taking people to orbit in just a few years.
The prosecution's star witness underwent a withering cross-examination on Thursday at Roger Clemens' perjury trial. Clemens, a seven-time Cy Young Award winner, is charged with lying to Congress when he testified that he never used performance-enhancing drugs. Brian McNamee, his one-time trainer, is the only witness who has firsthand evidence that contradicts the baseball-pitching ace.
Earlier this week, guided by the prosecution, McNamee testified in agonizing and repetitive detail about how he injected Clemens with steroids and human growth hormone between 1998 and 2001.
Documents have been released in the investigation of George Zimmerman's shooting of Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch captain, shot Martin, an unarmed teen. He's claiming self-defense. Robert Siegel talks to Greg Allen.
The law grants physicians access to information about trade-secret chemicals used in natural gas drilling. Doctors say they need to know what's in those formulas in order to treat patients who may have been exposed to the chemicals.
But the new law also says that doctors can't tell anyone else — not even other doctors — what's in those formulas. It's being called the "doctor gag rule."
A huge trove of documents has been released by prosecutors in the Trayvon Martin case. Among the biggest revelations so far is that the autopsy reveals Martin had THC in his system. But police said the shooting was "ultimately avoidable."
Back when the dinosaurs ruled the Earth, some hardy bacteria took up residence at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. Eighty six million years later, they're still there. And a new study says they're living out the most Spartan lifestyle known on this planet.
Pop singer Donna Summer, whose long career began in the 1960s and reached its apex in the disco era of the '70s, died of cancer on Thursday at her home in Naples, Florida. Summer was 63 years old. According to Billboard magazine, the singer born LaDonna Gaines had 32 singles that charted in the Hot 100. Fourteen of them made it into the top 10. To hear Sami Yenigun's appreciation of Donna Summer's life and career, as heard on All Things Considered, click the audio link.
When you hear Cecil Taylor perform, you never forget it. He's a force of nature at the piano, with a furious attack and a sound all his own.
"His piano is an orchestra," says Ben Ratliff, music critic for The New York Times. "Cecil has been with us for so long. And every once in a while he does these amazing, galvanizing solo piano performances. And you go see them, and you think, like, 'Wow. What was that? That was amazing.' And I can't get that anywhere else in the world. And that's unique."
When Facebook makes its initial public offering Friday on the NASDAQ, the stock will be priced at $38 per share, a price that's expected to bring in between $16 billion and $18.4 billion to the company. CNBC reports:
"[The price makes] it one of the most lucrative offerings the Street has ever seen. With that valuation taken into consideration, Facebook goes public with the highest valuation — in the $100 billion range — of any company on record at the time of its IPO."
Several news outlets are reporting that computer giant Hewlett-Packard will announce the elimination of 25,000 to 30,000 jobs. All Things D reports that the announcement will come from CEO Meg Whitman when the company announces its quarterly earnings next Wednesday.
Battleground states like North Carolina are where the action is when it comes to presidential contests. Thus, they are where political tactics like, say, the anti-Obama ad campaign featuring the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, first reported by The New York Times Thursday (and now disowned by virtually everyone the Times linked to it), are most likely to be rolled out.
May is the month we see strawberries explode in the market. There are strawberry festivals in every corner of the nation celebrating the juicy ruby beauties, and Strawberry Queens crowned galore. Those traditional harvest time festivals make us think our strawberries are mostly grown on the farm just down the road.
President Obama has said "I don't bluff," when it comes to opposing any effort by Iran to develop nuclear weapons (which that nation says it is not trying to do). And, he told The Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg in March, "all options are on the table."
Ever wonder why some people can run a 50-mile ultramarathon while for others even the thought of such endurance sports borders on torture?
Exceptional physical fitness, of course, sets the ultramarathoners apart from the rest of us. But scientists say what might be more important is athletes' excellent ability — both psychologically and physically — to cope with pain.
It turns out that most athletes' high tolerance for pain while exercising may also help them deal with it when they're at rest.
The Census Bureau announced that for the first time non-whites now make up the majority of births in the U.S. The demographic shift raises questions about how this trend will affect policy in the country, particularly with regard to education and social programs.
Truvada is a pill that's already used to treat people with HIV. A daily dose can also significantly reduce the risk of new infection. And a panel recommended the FDA approve an over-the-counter HIV test, OraQuick. Users could test and interpret their results at home in as little as 20 minutes.
Donna Summer, who sang some of the most memorable anthems of the disco era from "Love to Love You Baby" to "Bad Girls," has died after a long battle with cancer. She had a top 40 hit every year from 1976 to 1984, including the song she once told NPR she'd perform till the very end, "Last Dance."
This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. New elections are now set for June 17 after a failure to form a government in Athens earlier this week, but some worry that Greece might be out of the eurozone before votes can be cast. While the great majority of Greeks say they want to keep the euro, opinions polls also show anti-austerity sentiment rising.
Facebook hopes to raise more than $100 billion in its initial public stock offering. In a piece at Slate.com, tech columnist Farhad Manjoo warns that Facebook users can expect to see changes, including lots more ads. But he warns the company must balance profit seeking with the desires of users.
Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin, who renounced his U.S. citizenship, is now facing backlash from politicians: Two U.S. senators are proposing a plan that would prevent people like Saverin from reentering the country.