Business & Technology

All Tech Considered
11:33 am
Mon November 12, 2012

On Election Day, Romney's Killer Whale 'App' Couldn't Stay Afloat

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney waves to supporters before giving his concession speech in Boston on Tuesday.
Stephan Savoia AP

Originally published on Sun November 11, 2012 10:23 am

It was called Project ORCA, and the killer "app" was meant to be the Romney campaign's "unprecedented and most technologically advanced plan to win the 2012 presidential election," as described in a campaign memo.

It didn't quite work out that way.

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All Tech Considered
3:29 pm
Sun November 11, 2012

Left Homeless, Storm Victims Turn To Internet To Find Shelter

A damaged home rests on one side along the beach in the Belle Harbor section of Queens, N.Y., on Nov. 5 in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.
Craig Ruttle AP

Originally published on Mon November 12, 2012 9:29 am

Housing is always in short supply in New York City, and Superstorm Sandy just made things much worse. The government is paying hotel costs for many of those displaced, while others are staying with friends and family.

That still leaves many people still looking for a spare bedroom, and some are now turning to the social networking website Airbnb – a site that matches people seeking vacation rentals — to find a place to stay.

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All Tech Considered
4:44 am
Sun November 11, 2012

Distracted Driving: We're All Guilty, So What Should We Do About It?

Despite the well-publicized dangers and laws against it in many states, texting or emailing while driving remains a huge problem.
Robert F. Bukaty AP

Originally published on Sun November 11, 2012 2:02 pm

One of the most dangerous things you can do behind the wheel of your car is text or check your email. Texting and driving is illegal in 39 states, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands and Guam.

Despite the danger, millions of us continue to do it. I am ashamed to say that I was one of them.

During the recent presidential campaign, I was on the road — a lot. I was mainly driving on rural roads in places such as Iowa, Indiana and, of course, Ohio. On several occasions I checked my email while driving, and like many people I rationalized my behavior.

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Planet Money
5:36 pm
Sat November 10, 2012

Planet Money: Can A Poor Country Start Over?

Virginia Mayo / Associated Press Jacob Goldstein / NPR

Originally published on Fri November 9, 2012 8:10 pm

  • Listen to the Episode

Today's show is the story of two men and one big idea.

The big idea is that a poor country should take a small, empty part of its territory and say: We're going to build a new city here. And in this new city, we're going to get rid of our existing laws and rules, and bring in the best laws we can find from around the world. Get help from foreign countries. Maybe the UK could serve as a court of appeals. Maybe Canada could send in a few Mounties to help set up a police force.

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All Tech Considered
5:32 am
Sat November 10, 2012

Google, Facebook And The Next Billion Users

Men look at mobile phones at the Adjame market in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. The market for mobile telephones in developing countries has grown quickly, and now Facebook and Google are trying to get users to use the Internet on their devices.
Issouf Sanogo AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat November 10, 2012 11:47 am

The chances are slim that a person living in poverty in a developing nation has access to the Internet on a computer. It's expensive and, in some places, there's a lack of infrastructure to support it.

The chances are better, though, that that person owns a cellphone. It's probably not an iPhone or an Android, and he or she probably hasn't purchased a data plan for it, but it has the ability to access the Internet.

Google believes that this category of cellphone user is the future of its expansion.

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Business
2:21 am
Fri November 9, 2012

Car Dealers Sue Tesla, Citing State Franchise Laws

A Tesla Motors showroom in San Jose, Calif. Car dealers in New York and Massachusetts have filed a lawsuit that seeks to block Tesla from selling its vehicles in those states.
Paul Sakuma AP

Originally published on Fri November 9, 2012 11:46 am

Tesla Motors usually makes headlines for its technology. Its new Model S is the first entirely electric vehicle to be named car of the year by Automobile Magazine.

Friday's news is less flattering: A judge in New York will take up a lawsuit against the company about how Tesla sells its cars.

When Mark Seeger bought a Tesla in Seattle, he was actually just looking for a pair of shoes.

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From Scratch
4:05 pm
Thu November 8, 2012

Rodney Brooks, Co-Founder Of Rethink Robotics

Originally published on Thu November 8, 2012 11:09 am

Jessica Harris talks to Rodney Brooks, co-founder of Rethink, a company that makes robots for the manufacturing industry. In 1990 Dr. Brooks founded iRobot, which makes robots for the consumer and defense industries. Their first consumer product was the Roomba, the robot that vacuums for you.

Planet Money
12:04 pm
Wed November 7, 2012

Ask A Banker: High Frequency Trading

Not just an empty suit.
Paul Goyette Flickr

Originally published on Sun November 11, 2012 12:58 pm

Hi! I'm back. I was once a banker and now I write for Dealbreaker and answer your questions about the financial world here. You can send questions to planetmoney@npr.org with "ask a banker" in the subject line, or ask on Twitter (@planetmoney).

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Planet Money
10:38 am
Wed November 7, 2012

Episode 128: Friend or Foe?

Friend or Foe in NYC's Chess District?
Chana Joffe-Walt NPR

Originally published on Tue November 6, 2012 4:28 pm

  • Listen to the Episode

Why do businesses selling the same thing crowd around each other rather than strike out on their own?

To answer that question, Adam Davidson and Chana Joffe-Walt walk through some New York City neighborhoods – the diamond district, the plant district, the chess district — where store after store sells the exact same thing.

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Election 2012
10:16 am
Wed November 7, 2012

Stocks Fall On 'Fiscal Cliff' Fears

On the floor of the New York Stock Exchange this morning.
Allison Joyce Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 7, 2012 3:02 pm

On the day after voters returned President Obama to the White House and kept Democrats in control of the Senate and Republicans in control of the House:

"Investors pulled back sharply ... [amid] rising worries about the upcoming fiscal fight in Congress," The Wall Street Journal writes.

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