Business

Parallels
2:01 pm
Tue February 17, 2015

EU-Greek Drama Deepens As A Deadline Approaches

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras addresses lawmakers at the Parliament in Athens on Tuesday. Greece is in talks with European finance ministers over its debt.
Simela Pantzartzi EPA/Landov

Originally published on Tue February 17, 2015 3:52 pm

This time, they're done. Through. They're walking out the door on Friday.

Unless they aren't. Unless they renew their vows and their union grows ever closer.

That's basically where Greek officials and European finance ministers are in their complicated relationship. After years of possible-breakup drama, a real deadline will arrive Friday and the parties must decide: Are we in this thing together or not?

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Middle East
3:05 am
Tue February 17, 2015

On Iran's Streets, 'Death To America' ... And Hope For A Nuclear Deal

Iranians commemorate the 36th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution near the Azadi Tower in Tehran on Wednesday. While many Iranians would like to reorder relations with the West, there's also plenty of skepticism about whether it will actually happen.
Ebrahim Noroozi AP

Originally published on Tue February 17, 2015 11:01 am

At the anniversary of Iran's revolution, Iranians still chanted "Death to America." Yet many we encountered in a brief visit to the country seemed prepared to shift relations with the West.

We interviewed more than 20 people in three cities: Tehran, Isfahan and Kashan. Our talks were very far from a scientific sample. They took place in a country where citizens must speak with great care.

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All Tech Considered
1:33 am
Tue February 17, 2015

You Might Want To Take Another Pass At Your Passwords

They might be hard to remember sometimes, but good passwords may be the best defense against hackers.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Tue February 17, 2015 10:24 am

Compromises of private corporate or consumer data are all too common. This month, health insurer Anthem announced its customer data was hacked.

Yet even President Obama last week poked fun at our common line of defense: the lazy password.

"It's just too easy for hackers to figure out usernames and passwords like 'password' or '123457.' Those are some of my previous passwords," he said.

In short, passwords have, in some cases, undermined their own security intent.

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Energy
2:51 pm
Mon February 16, 2015

With Quakes Spiking, Oil Industry Is Under The Microscope In Oklahoma

A functioning oil rig sits in front of the capital building in Oklahoma City, Okla. The oil industry is an important employer in the state, but officials are concerned a technique used to dispose of wastewater from oil extraction is behind a surge in earthquakes here.
Frank Morris KCUR

Originally published on Tue February 17, 2015 10:24 am

Out on Oklahoma's flat prairie, Medford, population about 900, is the kind of place where people give directions from the four-way stop in the middle of town.

It seems pretty sedate, but it's not. "We are shaking all the time," says Dea Mandevill, the city manager. "All the time."

The afternoon I stopped by, Mandevill says two quakes had already rumbled through Medford.

"Light day," she laughs. But, she adds, "the day's not over yet; we still have several more hours."

Mandevill may be laughing it off, but Austin Holland, the state seismologist, isn't.

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All Tech Considered
2:12 pm
Mon February 16, 2015

Hygiene, Honey Pots, Espionage: 3 Approaches To Defying Hackers

Dmitri Alperovitch, co-founder of the cybersecurity startup CrowdStrike, says his company is building stockpiles of intelligence about potential hacking groups.
Keith Bedford Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue February 17, 2015 5:42 am

We're still waiting for details on how the hack against the health care company Anthem occurred.

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Remembrances
2:00 pm
Mon February 16, 2015

Remembering Michele Ferrero, Candy Kingpin And Pioneer

Originally published on Mon February 16, 2015 5:35 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

KELLY MCEVERS, HOST:

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The Two-Way
12:37 pm
Mon February 16, 2015

Report: Using Malware, Hackers Steal Millions From Banks

Originally published on Mon February 16, 2015 3:50 pm

Putting in place a sophisticated digital racket, hackers were able to steal millions of dollars from up to 100 banks in what the Russian cybersecurity company Kaspersky Lab is calling "the most successful criminal cyber campaign we have ever seen."

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All Tech Considered
3:55 am
Mon February 16, 2015

As Rules Get Sorted Out, Drones May Transform Agriculture Industry

Jimmy Underhill, drone technician for Agribotix, holds a drone at a farm in rural Weld County, Colorado.
Luke Runyon KUNC

Originally published on Mon February 16, 2015 2:57 pm

On a breezy morning next to a cornfield in rural Weld County, Colo., Jimmy Underhill quickly assembles a black and orange drone with four spinning rotors.

"This one just flies itself," he says. "It's fully autonomous."

Underhill is a drone technician with Agribotix, a Colorado-based drone startup that sees farmers as its most promising market. Today he's training his fellow employees how to work the machine in the field.

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NPR Story
2:56 am
Mon February 16, 2015

Labor Secretary Gets Involved In Stalled Port Talks

Originally published on Mon February 16, 2015 5:57 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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Shots - Health News
1:44 am
Mon February 16, 2015

Satisfied Patients Now Make Hospitals Richer, But Is That Fair?

Medical Park Hospital's patients tend to be pretty happy customers, leading to thousands of dollars in rewards from Medicare.
Novant Health

Originally published on Mon February 16, 2015 11:05 am

In Medical Park Hospital in Winston-Salem, N.C., Angela Koons is still a little loopy and uncomfortable after wrist surgery. Nurse Suzanne Cammer gently jokes with her. When Koons says she's itchy under her cast, Cammer warns, "Do not stick anything down there to scratch it!" Koons smiles and says, "I know."

Koons tells me Cammer's kind attention and enthusiasm for nursing has helped make the hospital stay more comfortable.

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Shots - Health News
1:42 am
Mon February 16, 2015

Beyond BPA: Court Battle Reveals A Shift In Debate Over Plastic Safety

Eastman Chemical went a step beyond calling Tritan plastic BPA-free, setting off a legal challenge.
Eastman

Originally published on Tue February 17, 2015 2:56 pm

BPA-free isn't good enough anymore if you're trying to sell plastic sippy cups, water bottles and food containers.

The new standard may be "EA-free," which means free of not only BPA, short for bisphenol A, but also free of other chemicals that mimic the hormone estrogen.

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The Salt
3:01 pm
Sun February 15, 2015

America Loves Smoothies And The Frozen Foods Industry Knows It

One of Dole Packaged Food's frozen fruit options. Over the years, frozen fruit companies have adjusted packaging to make it flashier and more colorful, and also put their products in stand-up bags, says Wall Street Journal reporter, Sarah Nassauer.
Dole.com

Originally published on Sun February 15, 2015 4:20 pm

Last year, frozen fruit sales in this country surpassed a billion dollars, shattering all previous records. Sales have more than doubled since 2011.

So what's behind this explosion of frozen fruit?

Sarah Nassauer, who reports on the food business for the Wall Street Journal, points to a pair of studies from the world's biggest seller of fresh fruit.

"Dole [Packaged Foods] got into this business, started selling frozen fruit in 2005," she says. "So in 2006, they did a big sort of frozen fruit usage study, and then they did another one last year in 2014."

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The Two-Way
9:43 am
Sun February 15, 2015

Commercial Drone Rules To Limit Their Weight, Speed And Altitude

Drones are displayed at an event with the Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) Coalition, last month. The FAA's proposed new rules for their commercial use require certified pilots to fly them and limit their speed, altitude and area of operation.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Tue February 17, 2015 1:59 pm

Updated at 2:10 p.m. ET

The Federal Aviation Administration has released long-awaited draft rules on the operation of pilotless drones, opening the nation's airspace to the commercial possibilities of the burgeoning technology, but not without restrictions.

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The Salt
5:32 am
Sun February 15, 2015

How Singapore Transformed Itself Into A Food Lover's Destination

Students sample the results of their labors in Yvonne Ruperti's pastry class at the Culinary Institute of America's Singapore branch.
Carole Zimmer

Originally published on Sun February 15, 2015 10:49 am

Lonely Planet named Singapore its top country destination for 2015. An island known as a little red dot on the world map, Singapore has less than 5.5 million people.

But when it comes to tourism, Singapore punches above its weight, with nearly 14 million tourists visiting the island in the first eleven months of 2014. And as a result of a long-term plan by the Singapore government, many of them come for the food.

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Business
2:57 pm
Sat February 14, 2015

Netflix Streams Its Way To Cuba — Slowly

Originally published on Sat February 14, 2015 4:32 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

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Business
2:57 pm
Sat February 14, 2015

Love On The Job Can Leave A Lot To Be Desired

Originally published on Sat February 14, 2015 4:32 pm

Six years ago, at Six Flags in Arlington, Texas, Wonder Woman had Batman's sidekick Robin in her sights.

"I just noticed him from across the room and remember thinking he was super-cute," says Hayley Welling, who performed as Wonder Woman at the theme park.

Soon, the romance between Wonder Woman and Robin — also known as Damian Marks — developed under the watchful eye of many fellow character actors.

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Around the Nation
6:43 am
Sat February 14, 2015

West Coast Port Closures Are Hitting Several Industries Hard

A few trucks move along the docks at the Port of Los Angeles on Thursday. Seaports in major West Coast cities that normally are abuzz with the sound of commerce are falling unusually quiet due to an ongoing labor dispute.
Nick Ut AP

Originally published on Sat February 14, 2015 10:53 am

No cargo will go in or out of 29 West Coast ports this weekend.

It's the third partial shutdown in operations at these ports in a week, the result of a bitter labor dispute between shipping lines and the union representing 20,000 dock workers. The dispute has been dragging on for eight months, and now the economic impacts of the shutdown are starting to be felt.

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Planet Money
2:22 pm
Fri February 13, 2015

For Florists, Roses A Nerve-Racking Business Around Valentines Day

Originally published on Fri February 13, 2015 4:33 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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The Salt
9:19 am
Fri February 13, 2015

How NAFTA Changed American (And Mexican) Food Forever

In 2013, the U.S. imported about 2 million tons of Coronas and Modelos, making beer Mexico's largest agricultural export to the U.S., according to a USDA report.
Scott Olson Getty Images

If you were to try and list the biggest game-changers for the American food system in the last two decades, you might note the Food Network, or the writing of Michael Pollan, or maybe even the evolution of Walmart.

But you'd probably overlook NAFTA, the North American Free Trade Agreement.

And that would be a mistake, according to a lengthy report out early February from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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The Two-Way
5:27 am
Fri February 13, 2015

Obama: Cyberspace Is The New 'Wild West'

Hoping to prevent or limit data breaches like the one that recently hit health insurer Anthem, President Obama is urging companies to work together to protect their data.
Gus Ruelas Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Fri February 13, 2015 2:43 pm

Updated at 4:35 p.m. ET

President Obama called cyberspace the "wild West" and that everyone is looking to the government to be the sheriff. But he said in his address to leaders in the tech industry, that private industry, policy makers and security experts had to do more to stop cyber attacks, the Associated Press reported.

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NPR Story
3:09 am
Fri February 13, 2015

How Sunk Cost Fallacy Applies To Love

Originally published on Fri February 13, 2015 4:34 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And now for Valentine's Day, we have an economic idea wrapped in a love story. Here's Jacob Goldstein from our Planet Money team.

JACOB GOLDSTEIN, BYLINE: When Megan McArdle was in her early 30s, she met a fantastic guy.

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Politics
3:09 am
Fri February 13, 2015

Political Necessity Forces GOP Into Middle-Class Income Debate

Originally published on Fri February 13, 2015 6:12 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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All Tech Considered
3:03 am
Fri February 13, 2015

The Black Market For Stolen Health Care Data

iStockphoto

Originally published on Fri February 13, 2015 7:40 am

President Obama is at Stanford University today, hosting a cybersecurity summit. He and about a thousand guests are trying to figure out how to protect consumers online from hacks and data breaches.

Meanwhile, in the cyber underworld, criminals are trying to figure out how to turn every piece of our digital life into cash. The newest frontier: health records.

I grab a chair and sit down with Greg Virgin, CEO of the security firm RedJack.

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Shots - Health News
3:03 am
Fri February 13, 2015

Fraud Case Casts Spotlight On Medicare Advantage Plans

A federal grand jury in West Palm Beach, Fla., indicted Dr. Isaac Kojo Anakwah Thompson on eight counts of health care fraud last week.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Mon February 16, 2015 10:45 am

As privately run Medicare health plans for seniors scramble to stave off proposed funding cuts, federal prosecutors in Florida are pursuing an unusual criminal fraud case that's likely to raise new concerns that some plans may be overcharging the government.

The criminal case is believed to be among the first to take aim at billing practices of Medicare Advantage plans, which are popular with seniors because out-of-pocket costs are lower and they provide more benefits than traditional Medicare.

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Media
4:26 pm
Thu February 12, 2015

Brian Williams Case Raises Fundamental Questions About An Anchor's Role

Originally published on Thu February 12, 2015 5:03 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Business
4:26 pm
Thu February 12, 2015

Obama's Plan To Tax Overseas Earnings Draws Scrutiny

Originally published on Sun February 15, 2015 10:01 am

American companies have about $2 trillion in overseas accounts — money they could be using to hire workers and pay dividends in the United States. But they're reluctant to do so, in part because of the way the U.S. tax system works.

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The Salt
2:45 pm
Thu February 12, 2015

Like Yelp For Labor Rights: This App Rates How Restaurants Treat Workers

Customers pick up their orders from a Shake Shack in New York City. It's one of the restaurants whose labor practices are detailed in the ROC United Diners' Guide app.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Restaurant servers are three times more likely to receive below-poverty-line pay than the rest of the U.S. workforce. Yet in a world where shoppers fret over cage-free eggs and organic vegetables, how many are also asking how much their favorite restaurant pays its staff?

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Energy
2:20 pm
Thu February 12, 2015

Low Oil Prices Great For Consumers, Less So For Investors

Originally published on Thu February 12, 2015 4:26 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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The Two-Way
1:34 pm
Thu February 12, 2015

Tussle Over Electric Bill Plunges New York Mall Into The Dark

Originally published on Thu February 12, 2015 3:26 pm

In perhaps a further sign of the decline of the American shopping mall, the lights suddenly flickered out today in the Rotterdam Mall in upstate New York after the electric utility cut power for non-payment.

In a statement issued by National Grid, the utility said it "has been working with the owners of the Rotterdam [Square] Mall for several months to set up a payment plan that would benefit both the mall and National Grid.

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All Tech Considered
12:00 pm
Thu February 12, 2015

From Facebook To A Virtual You: Planning Your Digital Afterlife

Facebook is adding a "legacy contact" feature to allow selected relatives or friends to manage the account of the user after they die.
Facebook

Originally published on Thu February 12, 2015 2:29 pm

Social Media platforms are getting closer to answering the question: What happens to our online accounts after we die? Facebook, Google and other popular services are offering more control over how we are remembered online. And at least one startup is looking at ways of using artificial intelligence to keep us alive virtually — long after we're gone.

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