Pat's PicksPat's Picks are the stories we've picked from the Story Stack as our top recommendations for the day.

Pat’s Picks: Thursday, April 24

Written by Pat Papers | UPDATED: Thursday, 24 April 2014 8:43 AM

The best headlines, the most interesting photography and conversation-starting articles from today’s newspapers.

Breaking News: News Outlets Overusing Alerts

Breaking News: News Outlets Overusing Alerts

Actor Josh Gad writes a guest column in USA Today decrying the overuse of breaking news alerts by news outlets. He says CNN felt the need yesterday to send an alert to his phone, telling him that Lupita Nyong’o had been named People Magazine’s Most Beautiful Person of 2014. He says editors need to be much more discriminating when deciding what news is worthy of sending out an alert.

 
Google Maps to Offer View of the Past

Google Maps to Offer View of the Past

It wouldn’t be a huge surprise if Google ends up being the company to figure out time travel. But for now, Google is offering a new feature of Street View that allows you to look through images dating back to 2007. If you see an hourglass in the upper left corner of the Street View screen, there is old imagery available. The feature is rolling out globally. The Wall Street Journal says the time machine will eventually be available in almost every location that has a Street View.

 
FDA Releasing Plans to Regulate E-Cigarettes

FDA Releasing Plans to Regulate E-Cigarettes

The Food and Drug Administration is outlining plans to regulate electronic cigarettes as well as cigars, pipe tobacco and hookahs. The Washington Post says the plans, if adopted, would force e-cigarette manufacturers to stop selling to minors, stop handing out free samples, put warning labels on their products and disclose the ingredients. As of yet, there are no plans to ban online sales or the use of flavorings that critics say are designed to attract young smokers.

 
New Fitness Company Offering At Home Spin Classes

New Fitness Company Offering At Home Spin Classes

The New York Times Business Section says investors are lining up to back a new fitness company called Peloton. Clients buy a $2000, high-end spin bike with a tablet - and then pay $39 a month to pedal along with live-streamed or recorded spin classes from home. The tablets are designed to allow users to compete with friends over Facebook - and will soon offer Netflix streaming. Peloton managed to lure top instructors with the promise of exposure to clients around the world.

 
Richard Gere Fools New Yorkers in Role as Homeless Man

Richard Gere Fools New Yorkers in Role as Homeless Man

Richard Gere is a good actor. So good, that he was mistaken for a homeless person while shooting his latest film on the streets of Manhattan. The New York Post says no one recognized the famous actor - and one woman even gave him a bag of food, which he graciously accepted without breaking character.

 

Pat’s Picks: Tuesday, April 22

Written by Pat Papers | UPDATED: Tuesday, 22 April 2014 8:21 AM

The best headlines, the most interesting photography and conversation-starting articles from today’s newspapers.

Man Recreates 1964 World’s Fair

Man Recreates 1964 World’s Fair

The Orlando Sentinel profiles Rob Bianco, a Florida model maker who was so enthralled by the 1964 World’s Fair in New York he actually built a scale model of it as a 13-year-old boy. It was so impressive that the fair’s mastermind, Robert Moses, wrote him a letter of admiration. Now 50 years later, Bianco still makes custom models of buildings from the fair which he sells to collectors. VIDEO

 
Lime Shortage Leads to Outrageous Prices

Lime Shortage Leads to Outrageous Prices

Have you noticed a lemon replacing your lime in a Corona? Blame the great lime shortage. Cases of limes that once sold for $30 are now commanding as much as $200. The New York Post says the shortage has a number of factors, including heavy rains that knocked blossoms off trees, a bacteria that has damaged crops, even hijackings of delivery trucks by drug cartels.

 
Overwhelming Feeling on Marathon Day in Boston: Normalcy

Overwhelming Feeling on Marathon Day in Boston: Normalcy

Boston Globe columnist Kevin Cullen says all along the marathon route yesterday, the overwhelming feeling was a welcome sense of normalcy. Cullen says it was fitting that Meb Keflezighia, a refugee from Eritrea, won the race. Cullen says unlike the brothers accused of bombing last year’s marathon, Keflezighia embraced the opportunities offered by America.

 
We Get Nicer As We Age

We Get Nicer As We Age

We’ve heard that as we get older we get wiser. But do we get nicer too? Researchers call it the maturity principle. As we age, we tend to report more positive traits like conscientiousness and agreeableness and fewer negative traits like neuroticism and extroversion. Experts say changing your personality is difficult but not impossible. It requires constant attention, similar to the effort needed to lose weight.

 
How Logan Paul Mastered the Art of 6 Second Comedy

How Logan Paul Mastered the Art of 6 Second Comedy

If you’ve ever used the Vine app, you’ve probably heard of Logan Paul. The Cleveland Plain Dealer says Paul has more than 3.8 million followers on Vine. The Ohio State University freshman has managed to use his knack for making entertaining six second videos to earn money, working on videos for Pepsi, HBO, Virgin Mobile and Ritz. Now he’s considering making entertainment into a career. VIDEO

 
New Permanent Birth Control Method Not As Effective

New Permanent Birth Control Method Not As Effective

The Chicago Tribune details a new study on the effectiveness of a new permanent birth control method for women marketed under the brand name Essure. Researchers say that nearly 10% of women who undergo the sterilization procedure could still become pregnant. That’s nearly four times the risk of pregnancy that comes after the more traditional method of a laparoscopic tubal ligation.

 
Netflix to Raise Prices for New Users

Netflix to Raise Prices for New Users

Three years after its disastrous price increase, Netflix is taking a more cautious approach as it looks to raise prices again. The New York Post says the streaming video service will hike the monthly fee for new users by $1 to $2. Current subscribers will continue to pay $7.99 a month for “a generous time period.” Netflix says price hikes will allow it to produce more original programming like “House of Cards and “Orange is the New Black.”

 

Pat’s Picks: Monday, April 21

Written by Pat Papers | UPDATED: Monday, 21 April 2014 8:14 AM

The best headlines, the most interesting photography and conversation-starting articles from today’s newspapers.

Buying Fake Friends on Twitter & Facebook

Buying Fake Friends on Twitter & Facebook

New York Times columnist Nick Bilton says it’s easy to rack up thousands of new followers on Twitter and Facebook. For $5, he was able to gain 4000 Twitter and 4000 Facebook followers. Retweets, likes, shares and comments are all for sale. Bilton says these fake followers can help celebrities and politicians appear more popular than they are, swaying public opinion and even legislative agendas.

 
Emotions Run High in Boston Ahead of Marathon

Emotions Run High in Boston Ahead of Marathon

The Boston Globe says emotions are running high in the city ahead of today’s marathon. The mood seems upbeat, with many speaking of unfinished business and the desire for a return to normalcy. The paper says it was fitting that the Marathon comes the day after Easter which for many symbolizes resilience.

 
New Trend: Elaborate “Promposals”

New Trend: Elaborate “Promposals”

Asking someone to the prom is getting complicated. The Courier-Journal says elaborate “promposals” are being acted out in schools across America. One student worked with a teacher to create a fake pop quiz that included a question asking his best friend to the prom. One high school junior says promposals have become popular because, “no matter how far she is out of the guy’s league, there’s almost a definite ‘yes’ as long as the promposal is fantastic and unique.”

 
Mutual Funds Venturing into Venture Capital

Mutual Funds Venturing into Venture Capital

The Wall Street Journal says more and more mutual funds are getting into the venture capital game, taking chances on Silicon Valley startups traditionally deemed too risky for mutual funds. These risks could pay off big for investors if the companies go public or get sold. But mutual funds typically shy away from such risky propositions, aiming for steady, if not spectacular gains.

 
Teen Survives Flight from San Jose to Maui in Wheel Well

Teen Survives Flight from San Jose to Maui in Wheel Well

A 16-year-old boy somehow survived a flight from San Jose, California to Maui stowed in the wheel well of a jet despite frigid temperatures at 38,000 feet and a lack of oxygen. Officials say the boy was unconscious for most of the flight. The boy was released to child protective services and not charged with any crime.

 
Report: Pistorius Took Acting Lessons Before Trial

Report: Pistorius Took Acting Lessons Before Trial

Olympian “Bladerunner” Oscar Pistorius took acting lessons before taking the stand in his murder trial, according to a new report. The New York Post says South African Sunday Times columnist Jani Allan wrote on her blog that a reliable source informed her about the acting lessons. Allan said Pistorius represents everything the West loathes about white South Africans living extravagant lives.

 

Pat’s Picks: Friday, April 18

Written by Pat Papers | UPDATED: Friday, 18 April 2014 6:36 AM

The best headlines, the most interesting photography and conversation-starting articles from today’s newspapers.

Cracking the Code of Baseball Scheduling

Cracking the Code of Baseball Scheduling

Have you ever wondered how Major League Baseball comes up with its schedule? 30 teams, 162 games, travel, special requests. In a way it’s mind-boggling. The Baltimore Sun says a team of Johns Hopkins researchers has come up with a program that uses thousands of lines of code to produce a nearly perfect schedule. Now they’re hoping to sell it some of the minor leagues - where schedules are often still done in pencil.

 
Every College Tour is the Same: Boring

Every College Tour is the Same: Boring

As he tours colleges with his daughter, writer Marek Fuchs says he’s come to realize that all college tours are boring and essentially the same. He writes a guest column in the Wall Street Journal with suggestions on how to improve college tours. For one, he says, don’t let parents and kids take the same tour. Use random kids from campus to lead the tours, instead of highly-trained guides. And let the tours see the campus at night, where much of the excitement takes place.

 
Korean Ferry Rescue Mishandled

Korean Ferry Rescue Mishandled

The New York Times says evidence is mounting that human error contributed to the massive loss of life in the South Korean ferry disaster. The ship’s captain was among the first to flee, and passengers weren’t told to evacuate for more than an hour after the ship began taking on water. Only a couple of the 44 lifeboats were deployed. 271 people remain missing as of Friday.

 
Earth’s “Twin” Discovered

Earth’s “Twin” Discovered

Scientists say they’ve discovered the first Earth-sized planet that orbits in a habitable zone where liquid water could exist. The Los Angeles Times says the discovery of Kepler-186f is beign called the “tip of the iceberg.” The thinking is, if such planets turn out to be common among the distant stars now being explored, there should be many of them closer to Earth.

 
Chelsea Clinton Announces Pregnancy

Chelsea Clinton Announces Pregnancy

Former first daughter Chelsea Clinton has announced that she and husband Marc Mezvinsky are expecting their first child. The Washington Post says the 34-year-old made the surprise announcement at an event on New York’s Lower East Side. As her mother looked on, Chelsea said she hoped she would be as good a mom as her mom has been.

 
So, You Want a Pet Giraffe?

So, You Want a Pet Giraffe?

If you’ve ever dreamed of owning your own exotic animal, the Wall Street Journal explains some of the legal hoops you might need to jump through to do so. Most exotic animals fall under the scope of U.S. Department of Agriculture regulations. But state and local laws apply as well. That means if you have a few Llamas or a pet cheetah, you’ll be limited in where you can live if you should ever want to move.

 

Pat’s Picks: Thursday, April 17

Written by Pat Papers | UPDATED: Thursday, 17 April 2014 7:10 AM

The best headlines, the most interesting photography and conversation-starting articles from today’s newspapers.

“Like” Cheerios? Then You Can’t Sue General Mills

“Like” Cheerios? Then You Can’t Sue General Mills

Liking General Mills on Facebook, downloading a coupon or apparently even just buying a box of Cheerios might cost you the legal right to sue General Mills. The New York Times says the food company has added language to its website telling customers they can’t take legal action against the company if they download coupons or connect through social media. Instead, customers must submit to binding arbitration if any disputes arise.

 
The Rise of Catalogs in the Internet Age

The Rise of Catalogs in the Internet Age

It doesn’t make sense. You do most of your shopping online these days, yet your mailbox is stuffed with more catalogs than ever. The Wall Street Journal explains that retailers are using catalogs as bait - the store window that comes to you - to entice you to go to their website or visit their store and shop.

 
Heartbreaking Text Messages from Students on Sinking Korean Ferry

Heartbreaking Text Messages from Students on Sinking Korean Ferry

The New York Post says students trapped on the sinking Korean ferry sent text messages to parents saying their final goodbyes. Nearly 300 people are feared dead. The students were on an overnight trip to a tourist island when the massive ferry apparently hit something and capsized.

 
Vinyl Records Making a Comeback

Vinyl Records Making a Comeback

In an era when we can have thousands of songs in the palm of our hand, vinyl records are making a comeback. The San Jose Mercury News says sales of vinyl records jumped 32% in the U.S. last year. New record stores are opening and more artists are making their songs available on vinyl. Experts say the upsurge is due to both hipster newcomers and nostalgic old-timers.

 
Catching Concrete Blunders

Catching Concrete Blunders

The San Francisco Chronicle profiles a group of enthusiasts who seek out misspelled street names stamped into concrete sidewalks in San Francisco. One man who hunts for them says finding one is like finding an Easter egg. But not everyone finds charm in the misspellings. One local resident was shocked to see “BRODWAY” and “BROADWEY” stamped on different corners of the same intersection.

 
Breeding Out the Bad Seeds

Breeding Out the Bad Seeds

DNA testing has come to the greenhouse. The Washington Post says more and more plant breeders are using DNA tests to screen plants for desirable genetic traits, instead of the traditional way of selecting seedlings by judging how they look and perform. The Post says marker-assisted breeding doesn’t draw controversy because the plant’s genetic boundaries are not crossed.

 

Pat’s Picks: Wednesday, April 16

Written by Pat Papers | UPDATED: Wednesday, 16 April 2014 7:20 AM

The best headlines, the most interesting photography and conversation-starting articles from today’s newspapers.

The Perfect Scrambled Egg

The Perfect Scrambled Egg

If coloring Easter eggs has put you in the mood for some scrambled eggs, you might want to take the advice of food author Michael Ruhlman. He whipped up some perfect scrambled eggs for the Seattle Times. He says most home cooks let their eggs cook way too long. His were on the burner for less than a minute. VIDEO

 
Bloomberg Spending $50M to Create Anti-NRA

Bloomberg Spending $50M to Create Anti-NRA

Former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg is spending $50 million to form a grass roots organization aimed at curbing gun violence. The New York Times says Bloomberg hopes the organization will one day be able to outmuscle the National Rifle Association. Bloomberg says gun control advocates need to use the N.R.A.‘s tactic of punishing lawmakers who don’t support their agenda.

 
Google Plans “Modular” Smartphone

Google Plans “Modular” Smartphone

Google has unveiled plans for a modular smartphone that users could customize with different hardware options. Owners would purchase different modules, like a better camera or a heart rate monitor, which would then be installed into the phone’s frame. Google would design the skeleton for the phone, while developers would come up with the designs for the different modules.

 
Man Finally Sent to Prison 13 Years After Conviction

Man Finally Sent to Prison 13 Years After Conviction

Cornealious “Mike” Anderson was sentenced to 13 years in prison for armed robbery in 2000. But when no one ordered him to jail, he went on with his life, getting married, having four children, filing taxes and starting a construction business. Last year, around the time when he would’ve been due for release, corrections officials noticed a clerical error and he was finally sent to prison. Now his attorney is fighting for his release.

 
Teen Researches How Music Affects the Brain

Teen Researches How Music Affects the Brain

The Richmond Times-Dispatch profiles 15-year-old Michelle Marquez, a remarkable young woman who has discovered the mathematical structure of sound that triggers emotions. She began working on this concept as a 12-year-old after seeing the movie, “Inception.” Her research into how sounds affect our emotions could have applications for attention disorder and PTSD treatment.

 
Superhero Window Washers Boost Spirits at Children’s Hospital

Superhero Window Washers Boost Spirits at Children’s Hospital

In what’s becoming a semi-annual tradition, window washers at the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago donned superhero costumes yesterday. The Chicago Tribune says Batman, Captain America and Spider-Man descended from the roof, stopping to interact with the young patients. They posed for photos and fist bumps, hoping to lift the spirits of those undergoing treatment for cancer or other serious disorders. VIDEO

 

Pat’s Picks: Friday, April 11

Written by Pat Papers | UPDATED: Friday, 11 April 2014 7:10 AM

The best headlines, the most interesting photography and conversation-starting articles from today’s newspapers.

Thousands Losing Tax Refunds Because of Parents’ Old Debts

Thousands Losing Tax Refunds Because of Parents’ Old Debts

Talk about saddling the next generation with debt. The Washington Post says the government has confiscated refund checks from thousands of taxpayers - to cover debts owed by someone else in their family - usually their parents. Some of these debts go back several decades. The government’s effort to collect these outstanding debts goes back three years - when a single line tucked into the farm bill lifted the 10-year statute of limitations on government debts.

 
The Real Stephen Colbert Tapped to Replace Letterman

The Real Stephen Colbert Tapped to Replace Letterman

CBS has made it official - naming Stephen Colbert as David Letterman’s successor. New York Times media writer Bill Carter says Colbert was an immediate front-runner who had made it clear over the past couple of years that he wanted this opportunity. Carter says Colbert has never really played himself on TV. We all know him as the right-wing blowhard who he says he’ll leave behind.

 
Planting a College Prank

Planting a College Prank

When maroon colored bluebonnet flowers started popping up on the campus of the University of Texas, groundskeepers were confused, since they’d only planted regular bluebonnets. As more maroon flowers started to sprout, they began suspecting their rivals at Texas A&M University (whose school colors are maroon and white). Horticulturists at A&M confirm they bred the special maroon bluebonnets - and they say it’s unlikely they would just sprout up someplace - but so far no one at the school has confessed to the botanical high jinks.

 
Hillary Takes Shoe-Throwing Incident in Stride

Hillary Takes Shoe-Throwing Incident in Stride

A female protester was arrested for throwing a shoe at Hillary Clinton during an appearance at a metal recycling conference in Las Vegas. The Las Vegas Review-Journal says Clinton, after realizing someone had thrown a shoe, made several quips. “Is that part of Cirque du Soleil?” Clinton asked. She followed up by saying, “thank goodness she didn’t play softball like I did.” The audience gave Clinton a standing ovation. VIDEO

 
Foxes are Popular Mascots for Startups

Foxes are Popular Mascots for Startups

The San Francisco Chronicle says the Fox is Silicon Valley’s spirit animal - becoming the mascot for a number of startup tech companies. They’re a popular choice since they’re seen as sneaky and clever - yet non-threatening and cute. There’s also the parable of the fox and the hedgehog - which says the fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing.

 

Pat’s Picks: Thursday, April 10

Written by Pat Papers | UPDATED: Thursday, 10 April 2014 7:08 AM

The best headlines, the most interesting photography and conversation-starting articles from today’s newspapers.

New Newspaper Takes On LA Times

New Newspaper Takes On LA Times

USA Today says it would’ve been a bold move in even the best of times - launching a newspaper to compete with the Los Angeles Times. But in this era where newspapers struggle to stay alive - starting a new paper is almost unthinkable. But that’s what Aaron Kushner, the publisher of the Orange County Register is doing. The Los Angeles Register debuts next week.

 
Enough of the Crybaby Oscar Pistorius

Enough of the Crybaby Oscar Pistorius

The New York Post’s Andrea Peyser has had enough of the “retching, crying, sniveling, vomiting degenerate” Oscar Pistorius. She says he deserves an “Oscar” for his performance as he stands trial for killing his girlfriend last year. Peyser says he also played the sympathy card by removing his prosthetic legs for the jury to show how vulnerable he is without them.

 
Coca-Cola Sticks With Its Formula

Coca-Cola Sticks With Its Formula

Soda sales have taken a nose-dive amid concerns about sugar intake and obesity. But despite that, the Wall Street Journal says, Coca-Cola is doubling down on carbonated soft drinks by increasing advertising, introducing new products and adding Taylor Swift as a spokeswoman. Coke’s CEO says he’s convinced of the power of the company’s brand name.

 
Disney Parks Host “It’s a Small World” Sing-along to Mark 50th Anniversary

Disney Parks Host “It’s a Small World” Sing-along to Mark 50th Anniversary

It’s one of the most performed and translated songs of all time, and possibly one of the most annoying. “It’s a Small World” turns 50 years old today. The Tampa Bay Times says Disney Parks celebrated by holding a sing-along. More than a billion people have gone on one of the rides that made the song famous at the various Disney parks around the world. VIDEO

 
Ultimate Warrior the Latest Wrestler to Die Early

Ultimate Warrior the Latest Wrestler to Die Early

The professional wrestling world was shocked this week to learn of the death of the wrestler known as the Ultimate Warrior. The Washington Post’s Paul Farhi says the 54-year-old Warrior, who was born James Hellwig, is one of more than five dozen wrestlers who died before his time. He says wrestlers have a mortality rate that would be considered a crisis if it were any other sport like boxing or racecar driving.

 
Baseball Attendance Lags

Baseball Attendance Lags

A week and a half into the Major League Baseball season, the New York Times says attendance has been particularly bleak at many ballparks. Getting fans to sit through games on chilly evenings is always a difficult sell. But it’s impossible to know exactly how bad attendance is since baseball attendance figures only go by the number of tickets sold, not the number of people actually going to the game.

 

Pat’s Picks: Wednesday, April 9

Written by Pat Papers | UPDATED: Wednesday, 9 April 2014 9:02 AM

The best headlines, the most interesting photography and conversation-starting articles from today’s newspapers.

Make Pizza From Scratch

Make Pizza From Scratch

New York Times National Editor Sam Sifton shares the secrets for making pizza from scratch that he says will rival some of the best pizza on the planet. One of the keys is the dough - and Sifton gives us the recipe for dough recipe used by Roberta’s of Bushwick, Brooklyn, which I visit often because it’s fantastic.  When it comes to topping your pie, Sifton says, don’t overdo it. Otherwise your pizza will end up soggy.

 
Is it Better Not to Have an HR Department?

Is it Better Not to Have an HR Department?

The Wall Street Journal says more companies are deciding to do away with traditional human resources departments. The argument is they stifle innovation and bog down companies with inefficient policies. But employees at firms without HR departments say they have more difficulty resolving workplace disputes and paycheck issues.

 
“Duelin’ Banjos” Writer Dead at 93

“Duelin’ Banjos” Writer Dead at 93

Arthur Smith, the guitarist and banjoist who wrote and recorded “Guitar Boogie” and “Duelin’ Banjos,” has died at the age of 93. The Washington Post says “Guitar Boogie” was known as the song that launched a million guitar lessons. Smith wrote and recorded “Feudin’ Banjos” in 1955, which was later renamed “Duelin’ Banjos” when it was featured in the 1972 film, “Deliverance.” The back-and-forth between two musicians has been recreated countless times, even by Kermit the Frog and Steve Martin. VIDEO

 
Experts Shocked at Speed of Washington Landslide

Experts Shocked at Speed of Washington Landslide

The Seattle Times says geologists are baffled by the speed of the landslide that devastated a small town in Washington. One estimates the slide was traveling at 60 miles per hour. It also traveled nearly a mile, more than three times as far as similar slides. Experts will soon begin a detailed study aimed at preventing similar tragedies.

 
Extreme Weather Sends Beef Prices Soaring

Extreme Weather Sends Beef Prices Soaring

Expect your summer barbecue to cost a lot more. The Los Angeles Times says extreme weather has thinned the nation’s beef cattle herds to levels not seen since the 1950s - when the population of the U.S. was half what it is today. That’s raised beef prices to all-time highs.

 
Redesigned Twitter Looks A Lot Like Facebook

Redesigned Twitter Looks A Lot Like Facebook

Twitter is rolling out a redesigned layout for user profiles. It’s drawing criticism for looking too much like Facebook. The New York Post says Twitter CEO Dick Costolo has been working to keep users’ interest amid concerns the microblogging website’s growth is starting to slow.

 

Pat’s Picks: Tuesday, April 8

Written by Pat Papers | UPDATED: Tuesday, 8 April 2014 8:32 AM

The best headlines, the most interesting photography and conversation-starting articles from today’s newspapers.

Inside the World of Sweepstakes Addicts

Inside the World of Sweepstakes Addicts

Enter for your chance to win! The San Jose Mercury News introduces us to a few of the people who are obsessed with sweepstakes. Some have won upwards of a million dollars worth of prizes. There’s one woman who bought “cold cuts by the armful” to win a $50,000 grand prize that she’ll put toward a Mexican cruise with her sons and grandkids.

 
Is the Women’s Pay Gap Just a Myth?

Is the Women’s Pay Gap Just a Myth?

Today is “Equal Pay Day,” a day aimed at raising awareness of the gender pay gap. It’s often said that women earn 77 cents for every dollar a man earns. But in the Wall Street Journal, two scholars claim the pay gap evens out when you consider education, marital status and occupation. Mark Perry and Andrew Biggs say making it easier for women to sue for gender discrimination would create disincentives for firms to hire women in the first place.

 
Sailboat Family Rescue Spurs Parenting Debate

Sailboat Family Rescue Spurs Parenting Debate

The New York Times says when Eric and Charlotte Kaufman were rescued from their disabled sailboat along with their 1 and 3 year-old daughters, it launched a debate over whether they were bad parents for embarking on such a journey or just unlucky. The family set out from Mexico for what was to be a month’s-long journey to New Zealand before running into trouble less than two weeks later.

 
Report: Al Sharpton Worked as Mob Informant

Report: Al Sharpton Worked as Mob Informant

The Smoking Gun website has released hundreds of pages of court filings and FBI reports detailing the Rev. Al Sharpton’s work as an FBI informant in the 1980s. Sharpton apparently wore a wire to help take down members of the Genovese crime family. He allegedly became an informant after being caught on tape discussing cocaine deals with a drug kingpin. In an interview with the New York Daily News, Sharpton acknowledged working with the FBI, but denied much of what was in the Smoking Gun’s report.

 
Is Organic Better for Your Health?

Is Organic Better for Your Health?

The Washington Post looks at the research behind organic food, examining the differences between regular and organic meat, milk, eggs, produce and fish. The results seem to be that in most cases, organic products don’t offer significant benefits. But in a few cases, such as in milk, there are some studies that show that fewer hormones in organic milk could lead to a lower risk of cancer.

 
How to Build a Robot Firefighter

How to Build a Robot Firefighter

Engineers all over the world are working on building robots that can be sent in to dangerous situations - such as fighting fires or shutting down damaged nuclear plants. The Boston Globe describes just how difficult it is to fine tune a robot for these types of tasks. This summer, the Navy plans to test a firefighting robot on one of its ships.

 

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