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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said Monday that it has discovered more Volkswagen cars containing software that helped them cheat emissions tests. The most recently discovered batch of 10,000 vehicles that the EPA says are equipped with "defeat device" technology are 3-liter diesel engine cars, including several Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche 2014 to 2016 model years.

NPR's John Ydstie reports for the Newscast unit:

Lots of you have told us that the dinner scramble is tough.

As a culture, we aspire to sit-down, home-cooked meals. But we often don't have the time or energy to pull them off.

If you travel for work — and you're tired of living out of a suitcase, renting rooms and sharing bathrooms with grungy roommates — there's a man in Austin, Texas, who has a possible solution. Call it a long shot. But basically, he's building tiny self-contained apartments that move when you do.

Jeff Wilson gives me a tour of the first prototype. He's the mastermind behind the Kasita ("little home" in Spanish — only with a "k" instead of a "c").

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This weekend might have been good for candy, costumes and baseball, but it wasn't great for motion pictures. In fact, it was the worst weekend at the box office this year. Here's NPR's Andrew Limbong on a rough month at the movies.

It's been about a year since Google (now known as Alphabet) first introduced its drone-delivery system known as Project Wing. The project now seems to have a timeline to become reality: 2017.

Reuters is reporting from an air traffic control convention:

Harvard Law professor Lawrence Lessig is ending his campaign for the presidency, citing revised rules that would have again kept him off next week's Democratic debate stage.

China unveiled its first passenger jet Monday, part of an effort to compete in the lucrative commercial aircraft business now dominated by Boeing and Airbus.

The single-aisle, twin-engine C919 was developed by the state-run Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China, or Comac. The jet was shown to a large crowd of government dignitaries in a hangar at an assembly plant outside Shanghai, near Pudong International Airport.

Chipotle Mexican Grill is temporarily closing more than 40 restaurants in and around Seattle and Portland, Ore., as health officials investigate an E. coli outbreak that has gotten at least 22 people sick.

USA Today reports:

Our Tools of the Trade series is exploring some of the icons of schools and education.

My editor, Steve Drummond, isn't that old of a guy. He's from Michigan — Wayne Memorial High School, class of '79.

But when he starts talking about backpacks, he dips into a "back in my day" tone that makes you think of a creaky rocking chair and suspenders: "You know, Lee, when I was in school, no one had a backpack!

Texas' Changing Relationship To Obamacare

Nov 2, 2015

The online federal insurance marketplace opened for business Sunday. It's the third year of open enrollment for these subsidized plans, established by the Affordable Care Act. Many Texans still oppose the law, even though the state is home to the most uninsured people in the country.

Outside of Phoenix, in the scorching Arizona desert, sits a farm that Saudi Arabia's largest dairy uses to make hay for cows back home.

That dairy company, named Almarai, bought the farm last year and has planted thousands of acres of groundwater-guzzling alfalfa to make that hay. Saudi Arabia can't grow its own hay anymore because those crops drained its own ancient aquifer.

Reporter Nathan Halverson tells NPR's Renee Montagne that Almarai bought about 15 square miles in the Arizona desert.

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Words You'll Hear: 'Marijuana Monopoly'

Nov 1, 2015
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In Orange County, Calif., there's no shortage of restaurants selling bánh mì, that delicious Vietnamese sandwich of meat, pate, fresh and pickled vegetables on a crunchy baguette. The OC's Little Saigon is home to the largest Vietnamese population outside of Vietnam. One shop in the town of Westminster stands out from the rest: It's got an actual pop star behind the counter, a woman known as the Vietnamese Madonna.

Lynda Trang Dai is certainly glamorous for a sandwich maven. She sports stiletto heels, a short skirt, and perfect make-up — including false eyelashes.

Washington wide receiver Pierre Garcon has filed a class-action lawsuit on behalf of NFL players against the daily fantasy sports site FanDuel, alleging it misuses players' names and likenesses without proper licensing or permission.

NPR's Nathan Rott reports for the Newscast unit:

"Attorneys for Garcon, say that FanDuel 'knowingly and improperly exploits the popularity and performance,' of Garcon and other NFL players without their permission.

The idea of crowdfunding, raising money from lots of people on the Internet, got a boost from Washington on Friday. The Securities and Exchange Commission approved a system that allows small businesses and startups to solicit funding from small investors.

Candy corn is as ubiquitous at Halloween as tiny witches and skeletons knocking on neighborhood doors. And it turns out the story of how this and other sweet treats came to dominate the ghoulish holiday is a bittersweet one – in which enterprise and racism are as intertwined as the layers of a rainbow lollipop.

The roots of America's candy boom lie in the 1920s. Sugar trade routes that had been disrupted during World War I were once again open for business. The result: a glut of sugar that led to a steep crash in prices.

Are the mutual funds you invest in efficient wealth generators or overpriced losers sucking money out of your retirement account with fees? It turns out most Americans don't know.

We asked the members of NPR's Your Money and Your Life Facebook group, and most respondents said they had "no idea" if the investments in their 401(k)s or IRAs were "good, bad or ugly." That holds true with broader surveys as well.

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The nation's central bank is proposing rules to help ensure that if a big bank were to fail, the costs of a bailout would not fall on taxpayers.

The changes would mark "another important step in addressing the 'too big to fail' problem," Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said Friday.

The rules would force some major banks to issue long-term bonds that — in an emergency — could provide a cushion of capital to cover losses, rather than leaving it to taxpayers.

In Wednesday night's GOP debate, moderators pressed GOP candidates on their massive tax reform pans. Moderator John Harwood asked Donald Trump about the idea that his massive tax cuts would make the economy take off "like a rocket ship" (an idea that Trump staunchly defended).

Valeant Pharmaceuticals International is ending its relationship with Philidor Rx Services, because of questions raised about whether it was using the specialty pharmacy to boost sales of Valeant drugs over cheaper versions.

As a result, Philidor will shut down as soon as possible, The Wall Street Journal reported.

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Ten million people still don't have health insurance two years after the Affordable Care Act went into effect.

Some never bought a policy. But 20 percent went to the trouble of signing up on, or one of the state insurance exchanges, and even made payments. Then, those 2 million people let their insurance lapse.

NPR asked visitors to our Facebook page to tell us why.

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It's a Wednesday night inside a Meijer store in Grand Rapids, Mich., and artist Carson Brown roams the aisles for hours. He's on a particular mission that night: hunting for products that are the perfect shade of blueberry blue.

In his cart: blue buckets, a blue ironing board, blue storage bins, blue Listerine, blue loofah sponges and blue shampoo.

Republican presidential hopefuls squared off over economic policies last night. The candidates defended their plans to simplify the tax code. It turns out, that's kind of complicated.


Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson is near the top of the polls. So it's not surprising that his tax plan came under the scalpel in the CNBC debate Wednesday night. Carson denied that his plan for a flat tax of 10 percent, based on the biblical principle of tithing, would cost the government more than $1 trillion:

The prepaid debit card company, co-founded by hip hop mogul Russell Simmons, will compensate some customers who temporarily lost access to their money due to a technical problem this month.

For Caracas housewife Anny Valero, today is grocery day — whether she likes it or not. Here's why: It's Monday, and if Valero doesn't go now, she'll have to wait four more days to buy food.

In Venezuela, government supermarkets sell price-controlled food, making them far cheaper than private stores. But Valero explains that people are allowed in state-run supermarkets just two days per week, based on their ID card numbers. The system is designed to prevent shoppers from buying more than they need and then reselling goods on the black market at a huge markup.