It didn't go far, but the NASA rover Curiosity has taken its first test drive on Mars.
"This is how I roll," NASA writes (speaking for Curiosity) with a photo it has released showing the rover's first tracks. "Forward 3 meters, 90 [degree] turn, then back. Electric slide, anyone?"
"We have a fully functioning mobility system," NASA engineer Matt Heverly just told reporters. He said Curiosity ended up moving about 4 1/2 meters during today's test. It also did a full revolution going forward, backed up and did another revolution.
This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan, in Washington. A congressman skinny dips in holy water and still can't buy a headline because another congressman redefines rape and biology, defies his own party and stands up Piers Morgan. It's Wednesday and time for a...
This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. Parts of the country have suffered from record heat and drought for several years in a row now, and this summer, it's been just brutal. In past programs, we talked with farmers about their crops. Today, we focus on difficult choices facing ranchers and dairy farmers.
Originally published on Wed August 22, 2012 12:28 pm
Each year, some 2,000 heart transplants are performed in the U.S., and the number of people on the waiting list is even larger. Between finding the perfect donor to worrying about insurance, the wait can be grueling, but heart transplant social workers are here to help.
This weekend, a court in Moscow sentenced three women from a previously obscure punk band guilty of hooliganism. They got two years in prison and made Pussy Riot an international sensation. In the Washington Post today, columnist Anne Applebaum writes that for all the attention paid to the case, Madonna's was by far the most damaging, not because she's a serious political figure, but because she isn't.
Childhood obesity is on the rise in many countries and overuse of antibiotics is now on the radar as a possible factor in the epidemic. Here 18-month-old twins are weighed in a nutritionist's office in Colombia.
Originally published on Thu August 23, 2012 7:00 am
In Colorado and Iowa, two states considered up for grabs in the presidential race, a battle over alternative energy policy is playing a growing role in the debate between President Obama and Mitt Romney.
Both states have important wind-energy sectors, and Obama's campaign is rolling out new radio ads this week highlighting the president's support for — and Romney's opposition to — extending a tax credit on wind-energy production.
AT&T is on the defensive today, saying that its decision to limit the use of Apple's video-call app Facetime does not violate the FCC's net neutrality rules.
Ever since Apple introduced the application, AT&T has limited its use to Wi-fi. In other words, customers who were using the AT&T network could not make video calls using the built-in app. Last week, AT&T changed that policy, saying it would allow customers on its new "shared data plans" to use the app but that did not apply to those who are on unlimited or tiered plans.
More Latino students are enrolling in college now than ever before, according to a report by the Pew Hispanic Center. But Latinos still lag behind other groups in preparing for and completing college. Guest host Viviana Hurtado discusses the report's findings with Richard Fry of the Pew Hispanic Center and the College Board's Jim Montoya.
When astronomers survey the universe, the landmarks are galaxies, those gigantic agglomerates of stars and interstellar gas spread across the immensity of space. A typical spiral galaxy, like our own Milky Way, boasts hundreds of billions of stars grouped along hundreds of thousands of light-years. That means that it takes a beam of light all that time to go from one extreme of the galaxy to the other, traveling, as light does in a vacuum, at 186,282 miles per second.
Originally published on Mon October 15, 2012 9:02 am
In the backyard of an unassuming suburban home in Bethlehem, Pa., is a global cornucopia of botanical heritage. Almost 300 varieties of fig grow here, most of them with roots in Europe, Asia or Africa, and each one collected and propagated by Bassem Samaan, a 34-year-old Lebanese native with an unusually green thumb and an obsession with figs.
Samaan is one of a handful of eccentric gardeners around the world whose goal is to save and preserve rare or unusual fruit varieties — trees that may never have commercial value and which may barely cling to existence.
Originally published on Wed August 22, 2012 3:08 pm
There's word this morning of another wildfire, this time outside the community of Manton in Northern California, where "dozens of buildings, many of them likely homes, have been destroyed," as The Associated Press reports.
Wildfires out West have been a constant topic this summer, it seems, on The Two-Way and other news outlets.
Originally published on Wed August 22, 2012 10:55 am
GOP officials and the Mitt Romney campaign have cut a deal with Texas Rep. Ron Paul's campaign to allow some — though not all — of Paul's delegates from Louisiana and Massachusetts to be seated at the Republican National Convention. The status of Maine's delegates remains unsettled.
The compromise would appear to avert a potential public clash with Paul supporters during the convention's opening day Monday.
Originally published on Wed August 22, 2012 8:17 am
We absolutely, positively will not make a reference to the crown jewels.
Oops, we just did.
It seems that last Friday night in Las Vegas, Prince Harry — third in line to the throne over in England and one of the world's most eligible bachelors — did some "cavorting with two naked women in a Las Vegas hotel room," as the London Evening Standard puts it.
The evening apparently involved some "strip billiards."
The mystery surrounding the death of a rare white buffalo and the claim by some Lakota Sioux in Texas that it had been killed by other Native Americans deepened Tuesday. A local sheriff announced that investigators believe the animal died of a bacterial disease and said the case is now closed.
Originally published on Thu September 20, 2012 9:42 am
When I moved to Philadelphia seven years ago, I was looking to take a ceramics class. Instead I found a wonderful community-minded program in which I've made lifelong friends, unleashed children's creativity and touched their hearts. They in turn have touched mine.
Prime Minister Meles Zenawi died in a Belgian hospital this week at the age of 57 after a long illness. He came to power in 1991 after leading a rebel army from Ethiopia's north and toppling the Marxist leader. He was viewed as a firm U.S. ally in the war on terrorism, but also was accused of human rights abuses in Ethiopia.
Haiti plans to clear away a symbol of the country's devastation. The earthquake in 2010 ruined the National Palace, one of the most spectacular buildings in Port-au-Prince.
DAVID GREENE, HOST:
We've been looking at some recent photographs. They show the white building still standing, if barely. The earthquake did not knock down its elegant rows of columns. But the white dome on top was left sloping at a dangerous angle, the supporting walls half-crushed beneath its weight.