Science and Technology

Science
3:58 pm
Fri May 23, 2014

Uncertainty Swirls Saturday's Predicted Meteor Shower

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 5:04 pm

Alan MacRobert of Sky and Telescope magazine says that Earth on Saturday may pass through relatively dense streams of debris, resulting in a vivid display of shooting stars — or it won't.

The Salt
3:01 pm
Fri May 23, 2014

California's Drought Isn't Making Food Cost More. Here's Why

Farmworkers pull weeds from a field of lettuce near Gonzales, Calif. Salinas Valley farms like this one rely on wells, which haven't been affected much by the drought.
George Rose Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 27, 2014 3:48 pm

The entire state of California is in a severe drought. Farmers and farmworkers are hurting.

You might expect this to cause food shortages and higher prices across the country. After all, California grows 95 percent of America's broccoli, 81 percent of its carrots and 99 percent of the country's artichokes, almonds and walnuts, among other foods.

Yet there's been no sign of a big price shock. What gives?

Here are three explanations.

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The Salt
11:54 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Sushi's Secret: Why We Get Hooked On Raw Fish

A feast for the eyes and the mouth. Tuna swim long distances, but their muscles are still soft and tender.
Kyodo /Landov

Originally published on Mon May 26, 2014 8:59 am

Raw fish is sizzling hot right now.

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The Two-Way
11:28 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Tonight's New 'Giraffes' Meteor Shower Could Be A Great One

A map from NASA predicts the peak viewing areas and times for the Camelopardalids meteor shower Friday night and early Saturday.
Danielle Moser NASA

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 1:22 pm

An all-new meteor shower makes its debut tonight, and astronomers say it could put on a show starting as early as 10:30 p.m. ET Friday and peaking early Saturday. Called the Camelopardalids, the shower is named after the giraffe constellation. It's expected to be visible in nearly all of the U.S., if skies are clear.

"No one has seen it before," NASA says, "but the shower could put on a show that would rival the prolific Perseid meteor shower in August."

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TED Radio Hour
8:10 am
Fri May 23, 2014

How Do You Deal With Fear Versus Danger?

"The scairest thing I've done is ride a rocket ship to space" — Chris Hadfield
James Duncan Davidson TED

Part 1 of the TED Radio Hour episode What We Fear.

About Chris Hadfield's TEDTalk

Astronaut and retired colonel Chris Hadfield discusses how to prepare your mind for the unexpected, and the worst.

About Chris Hadfield

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All Tech Considered
1:58 am
Fri May 23, 2014

What Those Baby Photos On Social Media Can Teach Us About Moms

"People are grappling with identity when they become parents, and they're also grappling with identity in terms of who we are online," says psychologist Daphne de Marneffe (not pictured).
Jonathan Ross iStockphoto

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 6:52 am

You can't miss 'em. Baby pictures have flooded so many Instagram and Facebook feeds that an app is now available to block them, if you want. But as the newness of social media collides with an experience as old as time — motherhood — researchers are beginning to study its sociological and psychological impacts.

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All Tech Considered
4:42 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

Can Cop-Worn Cameras Restore Faith In New Orleans Police?

Lt. Travis St. Pierre, of the New Orleans Police Department, shows off a body-worn camera during a press conference in January.
Brett Duke The Times-Picayune/Landov

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 1:23 pm

Body-worn video cameras are quickly becoming standard-issue for American police, especially at departments in the process of reform. And in New Orleans, the troubled police department is now requiring almost all officers to wear the cameras.

The city's police department has a dark history of corruption, racism and brutality. The low point may have been the Danziger Bridge episode, after Hurricane Katrina, when police shot unarmed people, then covered up the crime.

These days, the department is trying to rebuild the public's trust — which is where the body cameras come in.

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Photography And Memory
4:18 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

Overexposed? Camera Phones Could Be Washing Out Our Memories

Rebecca Woolf takes a lot of photos of her children for her blog, Girl's Gone Child, but says she tries to not let the camera get in the middle of a moment.
Courtesy of Rebecca Woolf

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 11:58 am

Los Angeles blogger Rebecca Woolf uses her blog, Girl's Gone Child, as a window into her family's life. Naturally, it includes oodles of pictures of her four children.

She says she's probably taken tens of thousands of photos since her oldest child was born. And she remembers the moment when it suddenly clicked — if you will — that she was too absorbed in digital documentation.

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The Two-Way
4:02 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

Mars Weathercam Spots Big New Crater

A photograph of the new crater (large, center). Take by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter's High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment.
NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona

Before and after shots taken by a Mars-orbiting satellite have detected a newly created impact crater half the size of a football field near the planet's equator.

NPR's Joe Palca says that while objects are striking Mars all the time (with big chunks surviving until impact, thanks to the Red Planet's thin atmosphere), this is the first time scientists have been able to determine the exact day a meteor struck – in this case, sometime on March 28, 2012.

But it wasn't noticed until two months ago.

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Science
3:21 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

NOAA Predicts Relatively Quiet Atlantic Hurricane Season

Originally published on Thu May 22, 2014 5:46 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel. Optimism and hurricanes are not words we usually utter together, but the Atlantic hurricane season begins June 1st, and today government forecasters offered some cautious optimism. They are expecting a relatively quiet year. Here's NPR's Jon Hamilton.

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