Here & Now

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Stay up-to-date with the news between Morning Edition and All Things Considered. Here & Now combines the best in news journalism with intelligent, broad-ranging conversation to form a fast-paced program that updates the news from the morning and adds important conversations on public policy and foreign affairs, science and technology, and the arts: film, theater, music, food, and more.

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NPR Story
3:53 pm
Thu January 9, 2014

Obama Picks 'Promise Zones' To Fight Poverty

President Obama will announce the designation of five "promise zones" today, including one in Philadelphia. (coia.nac/Flickr)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:13 pm

The Obama administration has designated five regions around the country as “promise zones” — areas where the administration will focus on closing the gap between rich and poor by creating jobs and strengthening existing poverty-cutting programs.

This comes 50 years after President Lyndon Johnson declared an “unconditional war on poverty.”

Derek Thompson, business editor for The Atlantic, joins Here & Now’s Robin Young to explain how “promise zones” work.

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NPR Story
3:29 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

A Look At One Ordinary, Beautiful Life

Shelagh Gordon died suddenly at 55 in February, 2012, leaving an ordinary but magical life. (Courtesy)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

In our busy lives — we tend to overlook the simple acts of kindness around us. For the past few weeks, WBUR has been highlighting some of these as part of a series called “Kind World.”

In this edition we hear about an idea reporters at the Toronto Star came up with: Is it possible to capture the life of a person you’ve never met through the stories of their friends and family… after their death?

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NPR Story
3:29 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Are We On The Titanic Or The Olympic?

Olympic (left) returning to Belfast for repairs in March 1912, and Titanic (right). This was the last time the two sister ships would be seen together. (Robert John Welch/Wikimedia Commons)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

Are we on the Titanic or the Olympic? That’s the question New Yorker writer Adam Gopnik asks in his piece “Two Ships,” as he looks at the last time Western civilization went from ’13 to ’14.

Gopnik is re-visiting the turn from 1913 to 1914, to think about the turn from 2013 to 2014.

He writes that 1913 was “full of rumbling energy and matchless artistic accomplishment,” which included achievements for Cubism in art, Proust in literature and Stravinsky in music.

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NPR Story
3:29 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

2014 Consumer Electronics Show Begins

Visitors check Audi's Concept Vision of Tomorrow during the 2014 International CES at the Las Vegas Convention Center on January 7, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Joe Klamar/AFP/Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

The 2014 International Consumer Electronics Show opened this week at the Las Vegas Convention Center. More than 3,200 exhibitors will present both retailers and the media with the latest in consumer technology.

NPR technology correspondent Steve Henn joins Here & Now’s Meghna Chakrabarti to discuss what items are already selling and what the next major technological breakthrough will be.

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NPR Story
3:28 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Should We Do Away With 'Wind Chill Factor'?

(Mel Evans/AP)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

As cold weather grips much of the country, we’re hearing a lot about the “wind chill factor.”

The measurement comes from Canadian Antarctic explorers Paul Siple and Charles Passel, who in 1945 worked out an equation to show how quickly water froze at different temperatures depending on the wind.

The numbers that come out of their equation were the precursor to our modern day “wind chill factor,” which is supposed to tell you how cold it feels outside.

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NPR Story
3:28 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

Listener Thoughts On Laser Beam Headlights

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

Earlier this week, Paul Eisenstein, publisher of the car news website The Detroit Bureau, joined us to talk about all the high-tech car innovations at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. (See the interview here.)

There was one thing he said that drew some pretty strong listener reaction. It was about a new device from Audi.

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NPR Story
3:30 pm
Tue January 7, 2014

American Skaters Not Expected To Take Much Gold In Sochi

Meryl Davis and Charlie White competes in the Ice Dance short program during day two of ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating 2013/2014 NHK Trophy at Yoyogi National Gymnasium on November 9, 2013 in Tokyo, Japan. (Koki Nagahama/Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

The U.S. National Figure Skating Championships take place in Boston this week. Winners will make the U.S. Olympic team.

Sports writer John Powers tells Here & Now’s Meghna Chakrabarti to expect ice dancers Meryl Davis and Charlie White, the reigning world champions, to make history as the first U.S. pair to take gold in the Sochi Olympics next month.

But Powers says U.S. figure skaters are falling short in pairs and men’s and women’s individual events.

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NPR Story
3:13 pm
Tue January 7, 2014

Robin Young On Michael Bay's Teleprompter Fail

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

We began our story today on the Consumer Electronics Show by mentioning film director Michael Bay’s onstage meltdown at the show.

He said later in an email that he’d been so excited he’d jumped off his script, and that confused the poor teleprompter operator, who’d jumped ahead.

Who has not been there?

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NPR Story
3:13 pm
Tue January 7, 2014

Innovation And Connectivity Dominate Consumer Electronics Show

Sony Executive Vice President of Sony Corporation and Sony Mobile Communications President and CEO Kunimasa Suzuki displays a Sony Xperia Z compact phone during a Sony press event at the Las Vegas Convention Center for the 2014 International CES on January 6, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (David Becker/Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

Curved high-definition televisions, wearable computers, internet-connected cars, water bottles and tennis rackets are just some of the thousands of gadgets on display at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

Jason Bellini of The Wall Street Journal is at the CES and tells Here & Now’s Robin Young that smart TVs and improved smartphones are among the hottest trends at the show, as tech companies respond to consumer demand for more connectivity.

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NPR Story
3:13 pm
Tue January 7, 2014

What Is Life Like For Iranian Youth?

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 4:14 pm

Since the 1979 Iranian revolution, very little has been reported from inside Iran — and the news we hear about the country often involves the words “nuclear,” “sanctions” or “Islamic repression.”

But what is life really like for Iranian youth? And how and where do they let their hair down?

The BBC’s Jiyar Gol traveled to the city of Erbil in Iraq to meet some Iranian youths who agreed to speak openly about their lives.

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