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3:48 pm
Sun October 26, 2014

From Brain To Computer: Helping 'Locked-In' Patient Get His Thoughts Out

Patients with certain kinds of brain damage can wind up with locked-in syndrome: they may be able to think just fine, but are unable to communicate their thoughts to others. A recently published case study shows that a non-invasive brain-computer interface can help.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Mon October 27, 2014 8:08 am

In 2009, a man named Barry Beck suffered a series of strokes, which caused extensive damage to his right occipital lobe and to the brain stem. The geologist and author of several books was left completely unable to communicate, in a state known as locked-in syndrome.

The condition was famously described by Jean-Dominique Bauby in his memoir The Diving Bell And The Butterfly, which he dictated by blinking.

But thanks to a team of researchers and some technological advances, Beck had another option.

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This Week's Must Read
3:48 pm
Sun October 26, 2014

After The Blackwater Convictions, A Book On Iraq's Nightmarish Reality

The family of Ibrahim Abid, who was killed when guards employed by security company Blackwater opened fire at Baghdad's Nisour Square in 2007, visits his grave on Dec. 9, 2008.
Hadi Mizban AP

Originally published on Mon October 27, 2014 6:58 am

Back in 2007, a shooting in Iraq caught the attention of many in the U.S.

Four security guards working for the company Blackwater shot and killed at least 14 Iraqi civilians in a traffic circle in Baghdad. Last week all four were pronounced guilty by a federal jury.

For our series, This Week's Must Read, author and Air Force veteran Brian Castner reflects on this news by turning to literature.

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The Two-Way
3:17 pm
Sun October 26, 2014

LeVar Burton Reads 'Go The [Expletive] To Sleep'

Former Reading Rainbow host LeVar Burton reads from the 2011 best-seller Go the [bleep] to Sleep.
YouTube

Originally published on Mon October 27, 2014 6:42 am

In case any over-exhausted parents might wonder if they're hallucinating, we can assure you: Former Reading Rainbow host LeVar Burton did actually give a reading of the 2011 best-seller Go the [bleep] to Sleep this weekend.

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Music Interviews
3:02 pm
Sun October 26, 2014

Maya Beiser Shreds The Cello

Maya Beiser's new rock covers album is called Uncovered.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 4:31 pm

Through the decades, classical cellists have studied the masters: Pablo Casals, Mstislav Rostropovich, Jacqueline du Pre. AC/DC doesn't quite make that list — but cellist Maya Beiser loves playing their music.

Beiser gives some of her favorite rock and blues numbers — like AC/DC's "Back in Black" and Led Zeppelin's "Kashmir" — a modern cello workover on her new album, Uncovered.

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The Two-Way
1:59 pm
Sun October 26, 2014

Many Tunisians Vote In Key Test Of Arab Spring's Legacy

A voter raises her ink-stained finger after voting in Tunis Sunday. Tunisians voted in parliamentary elections that bring full democracy finally within their reach, in the cradle of the Arab Spring.
Zoubeir Souissi Reuters /Landov

Nearly four years after staging a revolution that ousted a dictator and promised a future of democracy, Tunisians cast votes in their country's first full parliamentary election Sunday, picking from thousands of candidates. Voter turnout has been reported at around 60 percent of the electorate, according to state media.

"On behalf of all Americans, I congratulate the people of Tunisia on the democratic election of a new parliament," President Obama said in a written statement Sunday, calling the vote "an important milestone in Tunisia's historic political transition."

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All Tech Considered
12:45 pm
Sun October 26, 2014

Pandora Hopes To Lure Musicians Backstage With Analytics

Pandora founder Tim Westergren is a former touring musician himself, but some say the music streaming service he leads is hurting musicians more than helping.
Larry Busacca Getty Images

Originally published on Mon October 27, 2014 11:33 am

Coming up on the end of a year marred by bitter quarrels over royalties for online music, Pandora is now making a play for artists' goodwill.

On Wednesday, Pandora announced the launch of AMP (Artist Marketing Platform), a free service that pulls back the curtain on the widely popular streaming service and gives musicians access to data on who is listening to their music, when and where.

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The Two-Way
11:31 am
Sun October 26, 2014

Christie Defends Quarantine And Jabs At CDC Over Ebola

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, (right) announced a new mandatory 21-day quarantine Friday, alongside New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
Mark Lennihan AP

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 1:02 pm

Gov. Chris Christie says that a new rule requiring a 21-day quarantine for people who've been in contact with Ebola patients is necessary to protect the public in New Jersey and other states — and that the CDC "eventually will come around to our point of view on this."

Dr. Anthony Fauci, leader of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, disagrees, saying the quarantine could hamper efforts to combat the deadly outbreak in West Africa.

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Around the Nation
10:29 am
Sun October 26, 2014

Lifted On Giant Inner Tubes, An Old Tree Moves In Michigan

Construction workers lift an oak tree to move it to the other side of the University of Michigan's Ross School of Business.
Austin Thomason Michigan Photography

Originally published on Mon October 27, 2014 6:42 am

For as many as 250 years, a bur oak has been growing on what is now the University of Michigan campus in Ann Arbor. The big tree stands in the way of an expansion of the Ross Business School.

But instead of cutting it down, the university is moving the tree. It's not easy, it's not cheap, and it's definitely not fast.

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The Two-Way
9:56 am
Sun October 26, 2014

Nurse Criticizes Quarantine After Negative Ebola Test, Hires Lawyer

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 2:05 pm

Kaci Hickox, a nurse whose return to the U.S. after treating Ebola patients in Sierra Leone was sidetracked when she was placed in a mandatory 21-day quarantine Friday, is criticizing the way New Jersey officials have handled her case.

Hickox says she doesn't have a fever; a preliminary blood test came back negative for Ebola. She reportedly hired a civil rights attorney Sunday to work for her release.

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Global Health
8:22 am
Sun October 26, 2014

An Ebola Success Story In Northern Liberia

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 2:38 pm

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

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Sports
8:22 am
Sun October 26, 2014

World Series Game 4: A Small Ball Paradise

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 2:38 pm

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

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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The Salt
8:22 am
Sun October 26, 2014

An Unlikely Friday Night Pizza Cafe Has A Big Heart

At Moriah Pie in Norwood, Ohio, Erin and Robert Lockridge serve homemade pizza and diners pay what they can.
Christopher Kuettner

Originally published on Mon October 27, 2014 11:00 am

Here's what might have sounded like a pretty shaky business plan for a neighborhood pizza cafe: "We'll only be open one day a week. Won't do any advertising. No prices on the menus. We'll serve mostly what we grow in the garden – and no pepperoni. And we'll look on this work as an 'experiment of faith.'"

That's what Erin and Robert Lockridge said two years ago, when they decided to open a pizza place called Moriah Pie in Norwood, a small town part of greater Cincinnati.

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The Two-Way
8:18 am
Sun October 26, 2014

Brazil Picks New President In A Tight Race Of Stark Contrasts

A woman has her fingerprints checked with a new biometric identification machine before voting in Brasilia Sunday. More than 142 million Brazilians went to the polls, ending a dramatic campaign.
Evaristo SA AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 4:06 pm

Brazilians are voting in a runoff election to select their next leader today, and it's anyone's guess how the divisive campaign season will end: voter polls have shown nearly a dead heat in the race's final days. The election has come down to competing visions for the future of Latin America's largest economy, put forth by leftist incumbent Dilma Rousseff and center-right challenger Aecio Neves.

From Sao Paulo, NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro reports:

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Parallels
8:00 am
Sun October 26, 2014

Nicaragua Follows Its Own Path In Dealing With Drug Traffickers

Bluefields sits along Nicaragua's Caribbean Coast. It's a place where six in 10 people live in extreme poverty.
Juan Carlos for NPR

Originally published on Mon October 27, 2014 3:25 pm

Back in the day, the city of Bluefields inspired poets. In truth, it should be paradise, because it sits in an enviable position along Nicaragua's Caribbean coast.

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The Two-Way
7:20 am
Sun October 26, 2014

EU Stress Test Finds 25 Banks Need To Shore Up Reserves

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 12:37 pm

After a comprehensive review of banks in the eurozone, regulators say that 25 banks out of 130 had a capital shortfall that would expose them to severe problems in an economic crisis.

The European Central Bank released the results of its yearlong study Sunday, putting banks on notice to boost their reserves within 9 months. Officials say many banks have begun that process — and some of them have already made up the shortfall that's based on a snapshot of data taken last December.

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The Two-Way
6:22 am
Sun October 26, 2014

U.S. Marines Leave Afghanistan, Along With British Force

U.K. armed forces and U.S. Marines have ended combat operations in Afghanistan. In a formal handover, British troops stood with peers from the U.S. Marine Corps and the Afghan National Security Forces as the Union Flag and Stars and Stripes were lowered for the last time at the Bastion-Leatherneck complex Sunday.
Sergeant Obi Igbo, RLC AP

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 12:28 pm

The Americans are leaving Camp Leatherneck today. In a formal handover of the base they share with British troops, the last U.S. Marine battalion in Afghanistan turned the complex over to Afghan forces and began the process of heading home. The coalition base in southern Helmand Province was first established nearly six years ago.

For Britain, the day brought an end to 13 years of military operations in Afghanistan.

NPR's Sean Carberry describes the scene at the base:

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Goats and Soda
5:03 am
Sun October 26, 2014

A Doctor's Diary: Encountering Chaos And Kindness In An Ebola Ward

Dr. Bhadelia spent 12 days caring for the sick in an Ebola ward. Her experience has convinced her that she must return.
Courtesy of Nahid Bhadelia

I am an infectious disease (ID) physician at Boston Medical Center, and I serve as the Director of Infection Control at National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratory, helping design medical response programs to potential exposures to viruses that cause viral hemorrhagic fevers. This summer I spent 12 days in Sierra Leone, serving as part of a team treating patients at Kenema Government Hospital's Ebola treatment center. The center was supported by the World Health Organization with guidance, logistics and clinicians.

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Parallels
3:20 am
Sun October 26, 2014

Stranded In France, Migrants Believe Britain Is The Answer

French riot policemen force out migrants who were hidden in a truck that was making its way to the ferry terminal in Calais in western France on Wednesday. The cross-Channel port has become the last barrier for economic and political migrants trying to enter Britain illegally.
Pascal Rossignol Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 2:38 pm

Once known for lace-making, tourism, and being the closest French port to England, Calais has now come to represent a focal point of illegal immigration.

Hundreds of migrants roam the town by day. At night they sleep in squalid tent cities, their clothing hanging on fences and from the trees. The migrants have fled war, poverty and dictatorship, in places like Eritrea, Afghanistan and Sudan. They've traveled over desert and sea, on journeys that often take years.

Now, they're trying to get the last 30 miles to England.

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Book Reviews
3:18 am
Sun October 26, 2014

The Freaky, Fabulous, Feminist 'Secret History' Of Wonder Woman

cover crop
Knopf

Group sex parties. Polygamy. Bondage. What could such things have to do with Wonder Woman? Fortunately, there's no connection between those titillating concepts and the famous Amazon — certainly not in Jill Lepore's new book.

Just kidding! In fact, The Secret History of Wonder Woman relates a tale so improbable, so juicy, it'll have you saying, "Merciful Minerva!" It turns out that decades of rumors were true: The red-white-and-blue heroine, conceived during World War II, had a decidedly bohemian progenitor.

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NPR Ed
3:17 am
Sun October 26, 2014

A New Orleans Family's Lives Changed In An Instant

Five-year-old Kyle Romain sits on the lap of his grandmother, Barbara Romain, at a football game. Kyle lost his sight when he was hit by a stray bullet two months ago.
Eric Westervelt/NPR

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 2:38 pm

NPR Ed is reporting this year on the extraordinary changes in the New Orleans schools.

I was in New Orleans to report on how the city's nearly all-charter school system is handling children with disabilities and special needs.

An old friend, a veteran New Orleans reporter, told me about a family — a mother and her two youngest sons — who'd been badly wounded in a drive-by shooting just days into the new school year.

I met up with Alanna Romain at a recreation league football game at City Park. She has five children. Her oldest boy plays football.

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Author Interviews
3:17 am
Sun October 26, 2014

The Serious History Of Hocus Pocus In 'Penguin Book Of Witches'

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 2:38 pm

Throughout history, witches have taken on many forms: As women with a mystical relationship to the natural world. Or as endearing characters in pop culture (cue the Bewitched theme song). But historian Katherine Howe's new book recalls a time when witchcraft wasn't just a crime, it was enough to get you killed.

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The Two-Way
10:57 pm
Sat October 25, 2014

Giants Pound Royals 11-4 To Tie World Series

San Francisco Giants' Hunter Pence is congratulated in the dugout after scoring during the sixth inning of Game 4 of the World Series against the Kansas City Royals on Saturday.
David J. Phillip AP

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 10:32 pm

The San Francisco Giants came roaring back Saturday, pounding the Kansas City Royals 11-4 before a thundering crowd at AT&T Park in Game 4 of the World Series.

The Giants Hunter Pence and Pablo Sandoval led the team and charged up the crowd to tie the series at two apiece. Pence got three hits, drove in three runs, scored twice and made a nimble sliding catch in right field in the ninth.

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Music Interviews
4:44 pm
Sat October 25, 2014

Messing With Perfection: Why The Flaming Lips Took On 'Sgt. Pepper'

Wayne Coyne of The Flaming Lips speaks to NPR's Arun Rath about his band's new album, With A Little Help From My Fwends.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat October 25, 2014 4:54 pm

Rolling Stone called it the greatest album of all time — and for some, that's an understatement. The Beatles released Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band in 1967, raising the standard of rock 'n' roll and challenging their peers to catch up. For just about anyone who cares about rock music, this album is unassailable. And yet, one band — with a reputation for being contrarian — is testing the waters.

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Parallels
4:24 pm
Sat October 25, 2014

Israel's Solar-Powered 'Trees': For Smartphones And Community

A small solar-powered tree, invented by Israeli energy entrepreneur Michael Lasry, stands at the edge of natural greenery.
Emily Harris NPR

Originally published on Sat October 25, 2014 5:35 pm

There are plenty of real trees in Ramat HaNadiv. Oaks, pine and willow line the trails that circle through this nature park near Mount Carmel in northern Israel.

And planted in the gravel at the edge of one clearing is a new species, the solar powered tree.

Biologically speaking, of course, all trees are powered by the sun. But this is different.

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Around the Nation
4:21 pm
Sat October 25, 2014

'Ole Miss' Debates Campus Traditions With Confederate Roots

Mississippi Rebels fans cheer for their team prior to their game on October 18. The University of Mississippi has been in an ongoing effort to distance the state's flagship academic institution from its segregationist history.
Michael Chang Getty Images

Originally published on Sat October 25, 2014 4:54 pm

University of Mississippi football is riding high these days; they're undefeated and one of the top three teams in the nation.

But as Ole Miss fans come together to root for their team, many other traditions are coming under scrutiny. The school's been engaged in a long-running effort to remove potentially divisive, and racially charged symbols, to try and make the campus more "welcoming."

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The Salt
4:17 pm
Sat October 25, 2014

A New Lending Library — For Your Kitchen

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 11:50 am

Fondue sets, ice cream makers and juicers. Fun kitchen gadgets to have, but frankly, who has the cash or counter space? The Kitchen Library understands, so it just rents out those appliances.

We're talking four-day access to myriad cool kitchen contraptions. In addition to the aforementioned gadgets, the library is also home to a chocolate fountain, a creme brulee set, hand mixers and slow cookers. There are more than 100 items in the inventory.

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Sports
3:44 pm
Sat October 25, 2014

From The Stadium To Your Stereo: Behind Baseball's Biggest Sounds

When the Giants' Gregor Blanco hit this solo home run to lead off the World Series' second game, three big parabolic microphones arranged around home plate captured the crack of his bat.
Elsa Getty Images

Originally published on Sat October 25, 2014 4:54 pm

When the Giants' Gregor Blanco hit a home run to lead off the second game of the World Series, millions of viewers heard that satisfying crack of the bat well before watching the ball fall into the Royals' bullpen.

It's baseball's most iconic sound, and it's the No. 1 job for Fox's baseball audio engineer-in-chief, Joe Carpenter.

"The bat crack is really kinda where everything starts for us," Carpenter tells NPR's Arun Rath.

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The Two-Way
3:16 pm
Sat October 25, 2014

Iran Executes Woman Who Said She Stabbed Man Who Attacked Her

Reyhaneh Jabbari, seen here during a 2008 court date in Tehran, was executed in Iran Saturday. She had said she acted to defend herself from a potential rapist.
GOLARA SAJADIAN AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 12:19 pm

Reyhaneh Jabbari, 26, was executed by hanging in Tehran today, despite her appeals and calls from international activists for a new trial. Jabbari had said she acted in self-defense when she stabbed a man who was trying to sexually abuse her. Her execution had been postponed several times since her sentence was first announced in 2009.

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Goats and Soda
3:10 pm
Sat October 25, 2014

Producer's Notebook: Coming Home From Monrovia To Confusion And Fear

Ebola survivor Salome Karwah holds a 10-month-old baby whose parents are being treated for Ebola inside the MSF Ebola Treatment center ELWA 3 in Monrovia, Liberia.
John W. Poole NPR

Originally published on Sat October 25, 2014 4:54 pm

Salome Karwah, 26, lost both her parents to Ebola. On August 28, she walked out of the same Monrovia treatment center where they had died, a survivor of the virus.

And then one month later, she returned.

Ebola treatment centers are full of divisions: between sick and healthy, confirmed and suspected, dirty and clean. Karwah is standing in a fenced-in ward of suspected Ebola patients, gently bouncing a 10-month-old baby against her chest. "I help patients who are helpless," she says.

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Global Health
3:10 pm
Sat October 25, 2014

Gear Wars: Whose Ebola Protective Suit Is Better?

A female sanitation worker wears standard gear for a Doctors Without Borders Ebola center. The outfit includes rubber boots, goggles, a face mask, a hood, three layers of gloves, a Tyvek suit and thick rubber apron. No exposed skin is allowed. She was photographed in Monrovia, Liberia.
John W. Poole NPR

Originally published on Mon October 27, 2014 1:38 pm

In a white tent outside an Ebola treatment ward in Monrovia, Dr. Dan Lucey fondles a surgical glove. He rubs the latex between his thumb and forefinger the way a tailor might caress a piece of fine silk.

"They have very good gloves here," Lucey gushes about the Ebola suits used by Doctors Without Borders, also known by its French acronym MSF. "The MSF personal protective equipment is the best!"

Lucey, a professor of immunology at Georgetown University, calls the MSF protective gear "the gold standard."

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