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Shots - Health News
1:46 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

A Field Of Medicine That Wants To Know Where You Live

A map of toxic waste sites can be combined with maps of waterways and cities to reveal potential health risks.
Bill Davenhall Esri

In 1854, an English doctor named John Snow pinpointed an outbreak of cholera in London to a single contaminated water pump.

A pioneer of modern epidemiology, Snow used information about where the sick people lived to deduce that they were drinking tainted water from that source.

And while using clues about peoples' locations is an important tool in public health, it's now set to make individual health care even more personal.

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Goats and Soda
1:31 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

Why Is North Korea Freaked Out About The Threat Of Ebola?

North Korean medical workers wore protective suits at Pyongyang's Sunan International Airport this week.
Wong Maye-E AP

North Korea has a number of serious public health woes: malnutrition, tuberculosis and cardiovascular disease, just to name a few. Ebola isn't one of them. The disease hasn't hit anywhere in Asia, much less this isolated and rarely visited Northeast Asian nation.

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The Two-Way
1:28 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

After Mass Protests, Hungary Gives Up On Internet Tax

Thousands of participants march across the Elisabeth bridge during a rally against the government's plan to tax Internet usage.
Attila Kisbenedek AFP/Getty Images

Days after some 100,000 people took to the streets in protest, Hungary's government has given up on plans to tax Internet usage.

As we reported, opponents said the tax was the government's attempt to "create a digital iron curtain around Hungary."

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The Two-Way
1:05 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

Commercial Spaceship Crashes During Test Flight

The commercial space ship, pictured here in an earlier test flight, crashed in the California Desert.
Photographer:Mark Greenberg Virgin Galactic

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 2:13 pm

In what could be a major setback for commercial space tourism, a manned spaceship has crashed in California.

The Virgin Galactic Spaceship Two was on a test flight this morning, with two pilots aboard. Minutes after its rocket fired, the company announced on Twitter that spacecraft experienced an "anomaly."

Local authorities confirm that an aircraft has gone down. The AP reports that one pilot has been killed.

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Television
12:48 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

In The Life Of 'Olive Kitteridge,' It's The Little Things That Add Up

Richard Jenkins plays Henry, Olive's husband.
JoJo Whilden Courtesy of HBO

Olive Kitteridge, a new two-part, four-hour miniseries that runs on HBO Sunday and Monday, sounds like the kind of long-form dramas TV used to make back in the '70s and '80s when miniseries ruled. Like them, Olive Kitteridge covers an entire generation in the lives of its characters — a 25-year span — but otherwise, it couldn't be more different. Most of those sprawling classic miniseries were set against major historical events, and were as much about passionate romance and glamorous costumes as anything else.

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NPR Story
12:37 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

Defense Department Invests In Brain Implants For Depression, PTSD

Liss Murphy, who had surgery to implant Deep Brain Stimulation for depression in 2006 and got much better, on Cape Cod in summer, 2014, with husband Scott, son Owen and sheepdog Ned. (Courtesy)

More than 100,000 people have electrical stimulation devices implanted in their brains to treat Parkinson’s disease. The implants block the abnormal nerve signals that cause Parkinson’s symptoms like tremor and stiffness.

Now the Department of Defense is putting up $70 million to develop a new generation of brain implants to target depression and PTSD. These devices would detect and correct abnormal brain activity in real time.

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NPR Story
12:37 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

Ghost Stories From Around The World

The popobawa is a shape-shifting demon that stalks the Tanzanian island of Pemba. (Phoebe Boswell/NPR)

Are you afraid of ghosts, vampires and witches? What about Hanako-san, a little girl who waits to drag her victims to hell in the third stall of the third-floor bathroom of schools in Japan? There’s also La Llorona, a woman who drowned her children then herself and roams around, wailing in anguish.

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NPR Story
12:37 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

I Am A Teenage Witch

Youth Radio’s Akemi Weaver is a self-described "teen witch." (Screenshot from Youth Radio)

With Halloween upon us, images of witches abound. But for some, witching is a year-round thing. Youth Radio’s Akemi Weaver sent us this story to explain why.

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Music
12:32 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

'The Merry Widow' Opera Resurfaces With Renee Fleming

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Author Interviews
12:32 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

Stephen King On Growing Up, Believing In God And Getting Scared

"The more carny it got, the better I liked it," King says of his new thriller, Joyland. The book, set in a North Carolina amusement park in 1973, is part horror novel and part supernatural thriller. King talks with Fresh Air's Terry Gross about his career writing horror, and about what scares him now.

Originally broadcast May 28, 2013.

The Two-Way
12:20 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

With Reports Of Doping, World Marathon Majors Postpones Awards Ceremony

Rita Jeptoo of Kenya crosses the finish line to win the Women's Elite division of the 118th Boston Marathon on April 21.
Timothy Clary AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 2:09 pm

The World Marathon Majors has put its awards ceremony on hold because one of the sport's star athletes has reportedly tested positive for a banned substance.

The Majors, which was going to crown a champion on Sunday, wrote on its Facebook page that it was "disappointed to learn that Rita Jeptoo has apparently had an A test that proved positive for a banned substance under IAAF rules."

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Shots - Health News
10:20 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Seeing Red During Breast Cancer Awareness Month

The lump first surfaced in my breast in 1989, when I was 36 years old.

To many young women, a small lump like that wouldn't be cause for alarm because most breast lumps are benign. But there's a long history of breast cancer in my family, so I immediately consulted a renowned breast surgeon. "It's nothing to worry about," she said. My mammogram was completely normal. She thought the lump was merely normal breast tissue.

But four years later I was diagnosed with early stage breast cancer.

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Music
9:52 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Taylor Swift: The Peppiest Pop Star We Have Right Now

Taylor Swift's fifth album is called 1989, the year she was born. For the past few years, she's been the young queen of country music, by far its biggest-selling artist. But 1989 sidesteps country music entirely to become Swift's first pure pop album. Fresh Air rock critic Ken Tucker has a review.

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Books
9:43 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Halloween Makes Us Think Of ... Diversity In Romance!

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 12:33 pm

Once upon a time, when I was just out of college, I worked in a magical place called the Washington International School. The old Lower School building was a former D.C. public school on Olive Street in Georgetown, drafty and problematic, but full of character — and full of children from all over the world.

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Goats and Soda
9:40 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Why My Grandma Never Had A Pap Smear

A nurse uses a diagram of the female reproductive system to explain the do-it-yourself careHPV test at the Uganda Cancer Institute in Kampala.
Will Boase PATH

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 10:56 am

"So, did Grandma ever have a Pap smear?"

A strange question for a son to ask his mom, as I did last Thursday, but it came to mind because of careHPV.

The careHPV test is a quick, simple DNA test for the primary cause of cervical cancer — human papillomavirus (HPV) — could overcome serious obstacles to screening for cervical cancer in developing countries.

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The Two-Way
9:04 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Maine Judge Rejects State's Bid To Restrict Nurse's Movements

Nurse Kaci Hickox and her boyfriend, Ted Wilbur, take delivery of a pizza at their home in Fort Kent, Maine, on Thursday. A judge has ruled that the state cannot compel Hickox to remain in isolation if she's not showing signs of Ebola infection.
Robert F. Bukaty AP

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 12:40 pm

Updated at 12:55 p.m. ET

A judge in Maine has turned down a request by state officials seeking authority to compel nurse Kaci Hickox to remain in her home for the duration of a 21-day incubation for Ebola. Since returning from West Africa, where she treated Ebola patients, Hickox has refused to accept a voluntary quarantine.

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The Two-Way
9:03 am
Fri October 31, 2014

No Joke: French Town Cracks Down On Clown Costumes After Attacks

He's not welcome in Vendargues. The French town has banned people from dressing up as clowns for the next month following violent incidents across the country.
Hannibal Hanschke Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 10:36 am

It's not quite coulrophobia, but the French town of Vendargues has banned people from dressing up as clowns for a month starting on Halloween.

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The Two-Way
8:33 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Book News: J.K. Rowling Exposes Origin Of Harry Potter's 'Twee' Nemesis

J.K. Rowling reads to children at the 2010 White House Egg Roll. According to a new essay, her own experiences as a young student helped inform the Harry Potter character Dolores Umbridge.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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Code Switch
8:10 am
Fri October 31, 2014

The Creepiest Ghost And Monster Stories From Around The World

Popobawa promo.
Phoebe Boswell for NPR

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 2:02 pm

It's Halloween — a time for Frankenstein monsters and vampires and werewolves. But many of us have our own monsters from different cultures, and When we threw out a call to our readers asking what ghost stories and folktales they grew up with in their own traditions, we got back stories of creatures stalking the shadows of Latin American hallways and vengeful demons from South Asia with backwards feet. (And that's before we get to the were-hyenas and the infernal bathroom stalls.) Below are some of the best we've found or that were told to us from Code Switch readers.

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The Two-Way
7:59 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Israel Reopens Disputed Religious Site In Jerusalem To Worshippers

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 9:33 am

Israel reopened Jerusalem's Temple Mount today, a day after it closed the disputed religious site for the first time since 2000 following the attempted assassination of a right-wing Jewish activist.

More than 1,000 security personnel were deployed following clashes Thursday between Palestinians and riot police.

NPR's Emily Harris reported on the reopening for our Newscast unit. She said:

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The Two-Way
7:02 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Burkina Faso's Military Takes Power After President Resigns

Protesters shout out as they go on a rampage near on Thursday outside the Parliament building in Burkina Faso's capital, Ouagadougou.
Theo Renaut AP

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 1:56 pm

Updated at 10:40 a.m. ET

Burkina Faso's military appears to have taken control of the African nation shortly after longtime President Blaise Compaore, who had ruled since staging a coup in 1987, agreed to resign as part of what he said was a plan to hold elections in 90 days.

NPR's Ofeibea Quist-Arcton reports that the country's armed forces chief, Gen. Honore Traore, announced on Friday that he was taking charge, but it wasn't clear whether his role would be as interim leader or something more permanent.

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The Two-Way
5:49 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Lava Flow In Hawaii Spares Homes, But Threatens To Cut Off Community

Lava near the leading edge of the flow oozes over a concrete slab and toward a tangerine tree before solidifying near the town of Pahoa on the Big Island of Hawaii earlier this week.
U.S. Geological Survey AP

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 9:30 am

Officials in Hawaii are sending National Guard troops to the town of Pahoa on the Big Island, where a lava flow is creeping toward a main road, threatening to cut off the community.

Hawaii County Civil Defense Director Darryl Oliveira said 83 troops have been sent to the town of fewer than 1,000 to help provide security. They are to aid in a road block and with other safety issues, The Associated Press says.

"These are local troops, people from the community. They'll be here working to take care of their family and friends," Oliveira said.

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NPR Ed
5:03 am
Fri October 31, 2014

50 Great Teachers: A Celebration Of Great Teaching

LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 1:23 pm

Anne Sullivan was a great teacher. Famously, she was the "Miracle Worker," who taught a blind and deaf girl named Helen Keller to understand sign language and, eventually, to read and write.

Socrates ... now there was a great teacher. More than 2,000 years after he gave his last pop quiz, we still know him for the teaching style named after him, the Socratic method. And through the writings of his most famous pupil, Plato.

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The Two-Way
5:01 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Alleged Cop-Killer Arraigned After Arrest Ends Extensive Manhunt

Eric Frein is escorted by police into the Pike County Courthouse for his arraignment in Milford, Pa., on Friday. Frein was captured by police on Thursday after a seven-week manhunt.
Rich Schultz AP

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 12:36 pm

Updated at 10:05 a.m. ET

Eric Frein, the man who allegedly shot and killed a police officer and wounded another before leading authorities on a massive 48-day manhunt through rural Pennsylvania, appeared in court today appearing thin and bruised from his weeks on the run.

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Digital Life
4:22 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Selfies With Bears Prompt Warning From Park Rangers

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 5:42 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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Research News
4:19 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Less Than Jubilant Genes: Why The Brits Keep Calm

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 5:42 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

13.7: Cosmos And Culture
3:44 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Three Cheers For The Instant Replay

Madison Bumgarner and Buster Posey of the San Francisco Giants celebrate winning Game 7 of baseball's World Series against the Kansas City Royals.
David J. Phillip AP

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 2:13 pm

The Giants challenged a call in Game 7 of the World Series Wednesday night. It took the umpiring crew — in conference with the umpires holed up in the video monitoring station in New York City's Chelsea district — almost three minutes to overturn the on-field decision. They called the runner out at first, giving the Giants a potentially game-changing double play.

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StoryCorps
2:57 am
Fri October 31, 2014

For Morbid Anatomy Museum Founder, Spooky Things Are Life's Work

Joanna Ebenstein, founder of the Morbid Anatomy Museum, with a taxidermy two-headed duckling.
Liyna Anwar for NPR

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 10:03 am

Joanna Ebenstein is founder of the Morbid Anatomy Museum, which features a human skeleton, a pickled possum and a two-headed duckling, among other things. It's in Brooklyn's Gowanus neighborhood.

Ebenstein and her father, Bob, recalled during a recent visit to StoryCorps how ever since childhood, she's been fascinated with things that make most of us squirm, including black widow spiders.

"I used to catch them, and I'd put them in jars," says Joanna, 42.

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Politics
2:57 am
Fri October 31, 2014

For This Colorado Voter, Oil And Gas Debate Plays Out On His Property

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 5:42 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

All Tech Considered
2:57 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Doppelnamers: When Your Digital Identity Is Also Someone Else's

Writer Mike Sager, posing with some of the other Mike Sagers he met, in 2005.
Courtesy of Mike Sager

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 8:27 am

Finding your email double or Twitter twin is easier than ever, with search engines and social media reminding us how un-special our names really are.

It's made for a few fun mix-ups for Texas-based videographer Justin Dehn, who befriended another videographer named Justin Dehn, who's based in Minneapolis.

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