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Two years ago in Istanbul, I dragged Selcuk Altun, a Turkish author and lover of all things Byzantine, to the Hagia Sophia, a sixth century church that's now a museum. But we couldn't even get close. Altun took one look at the mass of sweating humanity blocking the entrance and decided to do the interview outside. But this year, the change is astonishing.

The FBI has officially decided it can't tell Apple how the agency hacked into the locked iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino attackers.

A prominent columnist for the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the largest news organization in Nevada, resigned after being told he could no longer write about two of the state's biggest players, including his newspaper's new owner, casino magnate Sheldon Adelson.

"If I can't do my job, if I can't hold the heavyweights in the community to account, then I'm just treading water," the columnist, John L. Smith, told NPR in an interview. "It wasn't an easy decision to make, but there was no other decision to make — at least in my mind."

Planning to squeeze cash out of your house this spring to do some remodeling?

You can relax a little. Interest rates on home equity loans, credit cards and car loans are likely to stay low for a while longer.

That's because the Federal Reserve Board's policymakers ended their meeting Wednesday without raising the benchmark short-term interest rate. If the benchmark had risen, then your borrowing costs probably would have been pointing higher too.

But you should be OK for now.

Investing for retirement doesn't have to be hard. You read up on how to put together a diverse mix of low-cost index funds, bonds, etc. Then keep setting aside all you can into that retirement account. Easy.

But when you actually retire and start spending that money, that's like going from playing checkers to playing chess. It can get a lot harder.

Copyright 2016 Oregon Public Broadcasting. To see more, visit Oregon Public Broadcasting.

An hour south from the bright lights of the Las Vegas strip, a tiny town in Nevada is up for sale.

Cal-Nev-Ari, Nev. (pronounced Cal-Nev-Air) is off a lonely stretch of Highway 95, surrounded by distant mountains and endless desert. The town isn't far from the California and Arizona borders, which is how it got its name.

If you can afford the $8 million asking price, you'll get the airstrip, the diner and the town's only casino. That includes a dozen old slot machines and a smokey bar. This place has character.

Copyright 2016 KUNM-FM. To see more, visit KUNM-FM.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

An annuity can be a very smart retirement investment for many people. That's not just because an annuity can provide a secure revenue stream — a monthly check — for the rest of your life, no matter how long you live. On top of that, the longer you live, the more you get what's called a "mortality credit" as you outlive other people who bought into the annuity. The income gain from that can be many times greater than any other secure investment you're likely to find.

This post was updated at 7:45 p.m. ET.

A central neighborhood in Boston had been left out of Amazon's plans for free same-day delivery in the city. The company said on Tuesday that will change.

A Bloomberg analysis last week showed that the predominantly black Roxbury community did not have access to the Amazon Prime service, which is offered to all adjacent neighborhoods. After looking at nationwide data, Bloomberg called the disparity in Boston "the most striking."

Prince's sister says that when the musician died suddenly last week, he left no known will. On Tuesday, she asked a Minnesota court to appoint a special administrator to oversee the estate, which may be worth hundreds of millions of dollars. But no matter who the heirs turn out to be, they will be facing some tough choices.

Prince always had an aura of mystery. His death at 57 has only added to the puzzle.

Apple's 13-year streak of making highly profitable products has hit a snag.

In the most recent quarterly report, Apple says iPhone sales fell. And with nothing else to make up for it for now, Apple's revenue declined along with it, for the first time since 2003. The quarterly profit, too, dropped 22.5 percent.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

VIDEO: Chocolate Bars With A Political Bite

Apr 26, 2016

It's often said that Washington, D.C., is a town obsessed with politics. Apparently, that obsession extends to its chocolatiers.

Hey! Wake up! Need another cup of coffee?

Join the club. Apparently about a third of Americans are sleep-deprived. And their employers are probably paying for it, in the form of mistakes, productivity loss, accidents and increased health insurance costs.

Quirtina Crittenden was struggling to get a room on Airbnb. She would send a request to a host. Wait. And then get declined.

"The hosts would always come up with excuses like, 'oh, someone actually just booked it' or 'oh, some of my regulars are coming in town, and they're going to stay there,'" Crittenden said. "But I got suspicious when I would check back like days later and see that those dates were still available."

Gannett Co., owner of USA Today, is offering to buy Tribune Publishing in a deal valued at about $400 million. Tribune owns a number of papers in addition to the Chicago Tribune, including the Los Angeles Times and the Baltimore Sun.

Charter Communications has bid more than $88 billion to buy its larger rival, Time Warner Cable, and a smaller competitor called Bright House Networks — and it's closing in on the required regulatory approval from federal authorities.

The deal would be yet another major shakeup in the telecom industry: It would form the second-largest Internet provider, behind Comcast, and the third-largest video provider, behind Comcast and the newly merged AT&T/DirecTV.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

This post was updated at 6:15 p.m. ET.

More than 550,000 people have signed a pledge to boycott Target over its restroom and dressing-room policy.

We want to hear from Uber drivers how much they made in a recent week. Drivers, it's information you can see on the app, when you review your weekly ride summary. Send us a screenshot — email tech@npr.org— and tell us how we can reach you.

If I told you there was a way to keep using your phone forever, would you want to?

In true unscientific form, I surveyed some phone users in downtown Washington, D.C.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit NPR.

Tor Peery grew up in a farming community in upstate New York, baling hay in the summers. He never thought he'd want to go back to that life.

Three deployments with the U.S. Marine Corps — including a tough tour in Helmand, Afghanistan — changed his mind.

"So many years I've been in the world of destruction," he says. "Being infantry and in the Marine Corps, I've destroyed so many things. I just want to create now."

In this year's election cycle, international trade has emerged as a top campaign issue.

So journalists with NPR and several public-radio member stations set out this week to examine trade matters as part of our special election-year series: A Nation Engaged.

#NPRreads is a weekly feature on Twitter and on The Two-Way. The premise is simple: Correspondents, editors and producers from our newsroom share the pieces that have kept them reading, using the #NPRreads hashtag. Each weekend, we highlight some of the best stories.

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