National / International News

Botched Ariz. Execution Renews Unease Over Lethal Injections

NPR News - Thu, 2014-07-24 12:12

Activists against the death penalty are seizing on a botched execution in Arizona Wednesday. Witnesses say that death row inmate Joseph Rudolph Wood gasped for air, taking nearly two hours to die by lethal injection.

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Central American Leaders: Immigrant Children Are A Shared Problem

NPR News - Thu, 2014-07-24 12:12

The presidents of El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras are offering their take on the mounting numbers of unaccompanied children entering the U.S. from Central America. They're talking to reporters on the day before a meeting with President Obama.

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Sen. Ryan Unveils His Anti-Poverty Plan, A Rebuke To LBJ Programs

NPR News - Thu, 2014-07-24 12:12

The Wisconsin Republican is rolling out a plan that he says will fight poverty more effectively than the programs launched by former President Johnson's War on Poverty, but progressives are skeptical.

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Missing Air Algerie Flight Appears To Have Crashed In Mali

NPR News - Thu, 2014-07-24 12:12

According to Air Algerie, one of the airline's flights has likely crashed in the African country of Mali. The plane, which carried 116 passengers and crew, lost contact with authorities an hour after it took off.

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Palestinian Authority Faces A Fraught Path To Peace In Gaza

NPR News - Thu, 2014-07-24 12:12

The war in Gaza is unfolding between Israel and Hamas, but the Palestinian Authority, based in the West Bank, is also involved in efforts to end the fighting. The Palestine Liberation Organization's diplomatic representative to the U.S., Maen Areikat, speaks with Robert Siegel about the causes of the conflict and the possible consequences of a cease-fire.

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Attack On U.N. School Kills Over A Dozen Civilians In Gaza

NPR News - Thu, 2014-07-24 12:12

A United Nations school, which was being used to shelter displaced Gazans awaiting evacuation, came under fire from a missile or shelling. The attack reportedly killed 15 people. Palestinian officials blame Israeli shelling; Israel says it may have been Hamas rockets that fell short of their target.

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For Better Treatment, Doctors And Patients Share The Decisions

NPR News - Thu, 2014-07-24 12:12

Doctors at Massachusetts General Hospital are working on ways to help patients better understand their chances of suffering heart attacks and surgical complications.

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Major fish kill discovered in river

BBC - Thu, 2014-07-24 12:06
A major fish kill in a County Armagh river is being blamed on pollution from farm waste, says the Northern Ireland Environment Agency.

U.S. Teens Still Lag In Getting Vaccinated Against HPV

NPR News - Thu, 2014-07-24 12:02

Eight years after the FDA approved the first vaccine against HPV, only 57 percent of female teens and 35 percent of male teens have been inoculated, the CDC says. Are doctors partly to blame?

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Aruba detains top Venezuela official

BBC - Thu, 2014-07-24 11:55
The Caribbean island of Aruba has detained a top Venezuelan official, Gen Hugo Carvajal, sought in the US for drug trafficking offences.

SA to block land sales to foreigners

BBC - Thu, 2014-07-24 11:34
The South African government is fast-tracking a bill to block land sales to foreigners, which could come into effect in 2019.

4 Theories About Why Wal-Mart Changed Its U.S. Chief

NPR News - Thu, 2014-07-24 11:33

Wal-Mart, the nation's biggest company, affects the lives of millions of workers and shoppers. So its U.S. leadership change is attracting lots of interest. Here are some theories about what happened.

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Suspect: Detroit shooting 'accident'

BBC - Thu, 2014-07-24 11:29
A man charged with killing an unarmed black woman on his suburban Detroit porch in November initially told police it was an accident, a jury hears.

Miley earns medley gold for Scotland

BBC - Thu, 2014-07-24 11:07
Scotland's Hannah Miley wins swimming gold after breaking her own Commonwealth record in the 400m individual medley.

VIDEO: Mark Hamill on new Star Wars

BBC - Thu, 2014-07-24 11:05
Mark Hamill, who played Luke Skywalker more than 30 years ago, has said it feels like an "unexpected gift" to be back on a Star Wars set.

Brogrammers give up some ground in comp-sci classes

Marketplace - American Public Media - Thu, 2014-07-24 10:58

Computer science is still a brogrammer’s world. But efforts to bring more girls and minorities into the field may finally be paying off.

According to the College Board, which administers Advanced Placement tests to high schoolers, the number of girls taking the AP computer science test in 2014 increased by 35.5 percent over last year. For boys, the increase was 24.5 percent.  While the participation for white students grew by 21.6 percent from 2013, the  rates of increase were even larger in other racial categories, including for non-Mexican Latinos, African-Americans, Asian-Americans and those who described their race as “other.”

Students who do well enough on the exam earn college credit for the course.

The College Board itself may be partly responsible for the increase. In collaboration with Google, it brought roughly 500 new AP math and science courses to schools with populations that are underrepresented in the STEM fields. One College Board official called the AP results the “first real indication of progress” for girls and minorities in years.

How can tech companies diversify their workforces?

The exam is still dominated by boys, specifically white and Asian ones.  And while the percentage of male test-takers dropped to its lowest level in five years in 2014, overall they still accounted for 80 percent of all students taking the test.

Similarly, while the percentage of white students who took the test dropped to its lowest rate in the last five years, white students still make up 50.4 percent of all test-takers.

The numbers are preliminary; the results of some make-up tests have not yet been recorded, according to Trevor Packer, who runs the AP program at the College Board.

The charts below show  the number of boys and girls who took the test from 2010 to 2014, as well as the increased participation rates by race.  

 

 

 

This Suit Keeps Ebola Out — So How Can A Health Worker Catch It?

NPR News - Thu, 2014-07-24 10:58

The head-to-toe protective gear is designed to prevent Ebola from infecting health care workers, yet some do contract the disease. It's not the suit's fault. It's likely a case of human error.

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Google quizzed over deleted links

BBC - Thu, 2014-07-24 10:56
Watchdogs are told that Google has complied with more than 45,000 requests for links to be erased from its European search results.

VIDEO: Hamas leader: 'Bloodshed should end'

BBC - Thu, 2014-07-24 10:46
The leader of Hamas, Khaled Meshaal, has said the group wants a truce as soon as possible, but with a genuine guarantee to lift the eight-year long siege.

U.S.: Russia-Based Artillery Targeting Ukrainian Troops

NPR News - Thu, 2014-07-24 10:46

The State Department says it has evidence that Moscow is lobbing artillery across its border at Ukrainian government forces, and that the Kremlin plans to ship rocket artillery to the rebels.

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