It's recess time at Ruby Bridges Elementary School and a third-grader is pummeling a plastic tetherball with focused intensity. He's playing at one of more than a half-dozen recess play stations on the school's sprawling cement playground — there's also wall ball, basketball, capture the flag, sharks and minnows, a jungle gym and tag.
Roy Choi is a chef who's celebrated for food that isn't fancy. He's one of the founders of the food truck movement, where instead of hot dogs or ice cream, more unusual, gourmet dishes are prepared and sold. His Kogi trucks specialize in tacos filled with Korean barbecue.
Choi was born in South Korea in 1970 and moved to Los Angeles with his parents at the age of 2. His parents owned a Korean restaurant near Anaheim for a few years when he was a child. He tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross that his mother had some serious cooking talent.
On arguably the biggest day in Twitter's history, we wanted to look back to find out just how it all started, because like many Silicon Valley companies, its origin story is fraught.
That's the subject of Nick Bilton's new book, Hatching Twitter: A True Story of Money, Power, Friendship, and Betrayal. On Thursday, he chatted with All Things Considered host Audie Cornish about the 140-character service's complicated history, how Twitter made his book reporting easier and the forgotten founder of Thursday's stock darling.
Because it serves up Armageddon with a side order of teen romance, How I Live Now is not always credible. But as a portrait of a surly 16-year-old whose internal crisis is overtaken by an external one, the movie is persuasive.
For that, credit goes partly to director Kevin Macdonald, but mostly to his star, Saoirse Ronan. Playing a neurotic urbanite who learns to survive in a war-ravaged landscape, the actress is, appropriately enough, a force of nature.
Originally published on Fri November 8, 2013 12:22 pm
Audiences for Thor: The Dark World may initially be confused as to whether they accidentally wandered into a preview screening of the next installment in the Hobbit series.
The opening prologue — a solemn Anthony Hopkins narrates an epic tale of ancient wars between the forces of good and a race of evil elves — feels like pure Tolkien, and with good reason: the Norse mythologies that inspired the Lord of the Rings author also informed Marvel Comics' Stan Lee and Larry Lieber as they went about developing their godlike superhero.
Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 4:09 pm
As eyes turned to the markets on Twitter's first day of trading, NPR wondered how some other tech stocks have performed since their IPOs. (Twitter closed at $44.90 Thursday, about 73 percent above its IPO price of $26 a share.)
Some of these stocks have soared. Others have stumbled.
For six decades, in her light-filled studio on top of New York's Carnegie Hall, portrait photographer Editta Sherman photographed celebrities from Leonard Bernstein to Yul Brynner to Joe DiMaggio. She was a legend — and she'd tell you that herself. Sherman died Friday at 101.
A note on her website reads: "Editta Sherman's vibrant sparkling life faded from this earth on November 1st, All Saints Day. She is at peace now and she is clothed in her ballerina dress with her diamond shoes dancing her way home to our hearts."
New public opinion polls show distaste for National Security Agency surveillance does not break cleanly across party lines. Despite the administration's attempts otherwise, one new study finds that the more people know about the NSA, the more they dislike it.
One man's sewage is another man's drinking water. As wastewater comes through this pipe, straw-like filters get rid of any contaminants wider than a human hair. That's just one step of the purification process.
Credit Amy Standen / KQED
Purple hydrants carry purified wastewater, mostly intended for landscaping.
In California's Silicon Valley, there will soon be a new source of water for residents. That may not sound like big news, but the source of this water – while certainly high-tech — is raising some eyebrows.
With freshwater becoming more scarce in many parts of the country, the public may have to overcome its aversion to water recycling.
Ah, The Stench Of Drinking Water
If text could transmit odor, you'd know where this water is coming from.
If the Food and Drug Administration has its way, an era of food technology will soon end. The agency announced Thursday it is aiming to ban partially hydrogenated vegetable oils from all food products.
Margaret Hamburg, the FDA commissioner, said at a press conference that her agency has come to the preliminary conclusion that the oils "are not generally recognized as safe for use in food."
If the agency makes this decision final, it will mean a complete ban on this ingredient.
The question of how humans process the flood of electronic media was a central part of the work of Stanford University sociology professor Clifford Nass, who died recently. Citing multiple studies, Nass said people often overestimate their ability to multitask.
Clifford Nass, the Stanford University sociologist who helped pioneer studies that undermined ideas about multitasking, has died at age 55. The man who dedicated his career to thinking about how humans live in a digital age died after taking part in a hike near Lake Tahoe Saturday.
At Stanford, Nass was "a larger than life character," his colleague professor Byron Reeves tells NPR's All Things Considered. Reeves says Nass "was just incredibly enthusiastic about his work, about students."
"Make the other person feel important." "Let the other fellow feel that the idea is his." "Make people like you." Those are some of the peppy commands that have sent generations of Americans out into the world, determined to win friends and influence people — oh, and make big bucks.
Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 3:34 pm
The Senate has approved the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which gives workplace protections to workers and job applicants who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. The bill would apply to any private employer that has more than 15 employees; it includes an exemption for religious groups.
The measure adding sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of characteristics that cannot be discriminated against in the workplace passed by a vote of 64-32 — a slightly stronger showing than an earlier vote to move forward on the legislation, which passed 61-30.
Mullah Fazlullah was selected Thursday as head of the Pakistani Taliban. Nicknamed "Radio Mullah" for his fiery religious broadcasts, he's also blamed for the 2012 attack on Pakistani teenager Malala Yousafzai.
Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 2:17 pm
The new leader of the Pakistani Taliban, Mullah Fazlullah, is perhaps best known for being the man behind the shooting attack on Malala Yousafzai, the schoolgirl who courageously campaigned for girls' education.
Fazlullah, who was elected Thursday as head of the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan, rose to prominence in Pakistan's Swat Valley earlier through his fiery religious radio broadcasts, which earned him the nickname "Radio Mullah."
Add "obviously, I was extremely, extremely inebriated" to this week's amazing quotes from Toronto Mayor Rob Ford.
The mayor, who on Tuesday admitted that "yes I have smoked crack cocaine ... probably in one of my drunken stupors" after reports about one video he appears in, issued his "extremely inebriated" mea culpa on Thursday in response to another.
This set takes us to the 2013 Newport Jazz Festival for trombonist Ray Anderson and his Pocket Brass Band as they perform Anderson's Sweet Chicago Suite. To open: a high-energy chorus of "76 Trombones" by Pocket Brass at the 1997 Iowa City Jazz Festival, as originally heard on our long-running, go-where-the-music-is series, JazzSet.
This colorfully illustrated French and Hebrew Passover Haggadah was published in Vienna in 1930. Caption on the image: "Eating Matzah." This restored document is part of an exhibit at the National Archives in Washington, D.C., that opens Nov. 8.
Credit National Archives
Documents from the Iraqi Jewish community dry outside the Mukhabarat, Saddam Hussein's intelligence headquarters, in Baghdad.
Credit National Archives
Patrick Brown, a conservation technician, works on Iraqi Jewish documents at the National Archives in College Park, Md., on Sept. 30.
Credit Alex Brandon / AP
This Rabbinic Bible from Venice in 1568 is the one of the earliest printed books discovered in this collection. Printed in late Renaissance-era Venice by Giovanni di Gara, the central biblical text is surrounded by rabbinic commentaries.
A still image from a NOAA satellite shows the progress of Super Typhoon Haiyan. The powerful storm, which had packed winds stronger than 200 mph while at sea, made landfall early Friday morning in the Philippines.
Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 8:52 pm
Classified as a super typhoon, the Pacific storm Haiyan has made landfall in the Philippines, bringing top sustained winds that were measured at more than 195 miles per hour before landfall. The measurement reflects the winds sustained by the storm for one minute; the storm was also producing gusts of 230 mph.
Updated at 10:40 p.m. ET: Storm Strength Could Be Historic
The strength of the massive super typhoon could be record-setting, weather experts were saying Thursday night.
But the really big business news is that "the European Central Bank startled investors Thursday with a surprise cut in its benchmark interest rate." As The Associated Press adds, "The bank lowered the benchmark refinancing rate to a record low 0.25 percent from 0.5 percent."
In the U.S., graffiti is often condemned as vandalism. But during the Arab Spring, artists say city walls were often the only places where they could talk back to tyrants.
Street art can be found across the Middle East and North Africa, and the Arab Spring protests inspired an artistic revolution. The "Creative Dissent" exhibit at the Arab American National Museum in Dearborn, Michigan is putting that art on display.
Originally published on Mon November 11, 2013 5:36 am
In the hunt for new ways to help people fight alcoholism, doctors are studying gabapentin, a generic drug that's commonly used to treat epilepsy and fibromyalgia.
In a 12-week clinical trial conducted by the Scripps Research Institute, people taking taking gabapentin were much better at reducing their alcohol intake than those who got a placebo. The research, involving 150 people, was funded by the National Institutes of Health.
Militias from towns throughout the country's west parade through Tripoli, Libya, in 2012. Analysts say the country is awash with heavy weapons in the hands of militias divided by tribe, ideology and region. The central government has little power over the gunmen.
Zintan, a mountain town in northwestern Libya, is a place of gray and brown buildings, with little infrastructure, about 50,000 people and no central government control.
The Libyan government doesn't provide basic services, not even water. People use wells to provide for themselves. The local council runs all of Zintan's affairs out of a building in the center of town.
At the local militia base on the outskirts of town, we meet the keeper of Saif el-Islam Gadhafi, the son and one-time heir apparent of Moammar Gadhafi.