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Updated: 22 min 17 sec ago

7 Facts And 3 GIFs: Hellooo Curling

Thu, 2014-01-23 00:41

The Olympic sport of curling is a combination of bowling, bocce ball, billiards and chess — all on ice, and with some sweeping involved. NPR's Tamara Keith spent some time learning how to curl, and put together this cheat sheet.

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From The Trenches To The Web: British WWI Diaries Digitized

Thu, 2014-01-23 00:40

The British National Archives is posting 1.5 million pages of World War I diaries online. The personal accounts provide new insight into the lives of the troops who fought the war that began 100 years ago. "Everywhere the same hard, grim, pitiless sight of battle and war," reads one entry.

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Post-9/11 Panel Criticizes NSA Phone Data Collection

Wed, 2014-01-22 21:44

An independent panel created after the 9/11 attacks says bulk collection of billions of American phone records violates the letter and the spirit of the law.

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Virginia's New Attorney General Will Not Defend Gay-Marriage Ban

Wed, 2014-01-22 21:17

In an interview with NPR, Mark Herring says he wants the state to be on the "right side of history." The Democrat said his solicitor general will tell a federal judge that Virginia is switching sides in a case that has potential to reach the U.S. Supreme Court.

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Keystone Pipeline's Southern Section Begins Delivering Oil To Gulf Coast

Wed, 2014-01-22 18:05

A large section of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline was officially put to work Wednesday, in a move that supporters say will help ease the flow of oil to refineries. The Obama administration has yet to rule on the project's northern portion.

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Governors Gone Wild: A Recent History

Wed, 2014-01-22 16:56

Former Virginia GOP Gov. Bob McDonnell, who was indicted Tuesday, is the latest in a long line of governors to face felony charges. In Illinois alone, three have ended up in prison since the 1980s.

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Online Donors Send Jamaican Bobsled Team To Sochi

Wed, 2014-01-22 16:15

After word spread that Jamaica's two-man bobsled team had qualified for the Olympics but didn't have money to go to Russia, Internet donors stepped in — even contributing in Dogecoin, the peculiar digital currency.

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Small-Batch Distilleries Ride The Craft Liquor Wave

Wed, 2014-01-22 14:24

Bacardi, Jack Daniels and Johnnie Walker have some new competition these days. There's been a surge in the number of craft distilleries in the U.S. over the past few years, as more mom and pop entrepreneurs are making liquor for local customers.

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Should Farmers Give John Deere And Monsanto Their Data?

Wed, 2014-01-22 13:45

Farmers can now deliver data from their fields, minute by minute, to big agribusiness companies like Monsanto or John Deere. Those companies promise to use the data to help farmers make money. But some farmers worry that it could threaten their privacy and give the big companies too much power.

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How A Little Chill In The Air Could Help You Lose Weight

Wed, 2014-01-22 13:34

Researchers in the Netherlands suggest that something as simple as lowering temperatures in the office or at home can help people burn calories as they keep their body temperatures steady. Chilling out to shed pounds works best in combination with diet and exercise.

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Putting The Brake On Who Can See Your Car's Data Trail

Wed, 2014-01-22 13:29

Many cars can now track where we are, how fast we go and lots of other nuggets of information that can be accessed and mined. Some lawmakers and at least one car company say it's time to set some rules on driver privacy.

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Wrestling Fans Mourn Mae Young, 90 — A Pioneer Of The Ring

Wed, 2014-01-22 13:10

For years, she was known simply as The Great Mae Young. She started out in high school, wrestling boys and challenging top female wrestlers. Decades later, she took on far younger opponents and demanded to be "powerbombed" into folding tables by huge men.

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A Growth Factor Heals The Damage To A Preemie's Brain — In Mice

Wed, 2014-01-22 13:00

Scientists have shown that damage to the brain's "white matter" is responsible for many of the developmental problems that very premature infants often face. Now researchers have also demonstrated that it's possible to prevent that sort of damage in mice.

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Shorter Lines? For Elections Commission, It's Common Sense

Wed, 2014-01-22 13:00

President Obama last year appointed a commission to recommend ways that local election officials can shorten lines at the polls. On Wednesday, that commission is releasing its final report, offering suggestions on how to make improvements in the voting experience.

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Ahead Of World Cup, Brazil's Delays Have FIFA Concerned

Wed, 2014-01-22 13:00

Months before Brazil hosts the World Cup, preparations are going at breakneck speed to host the hundreds of thousands of tourists who will pour in to watch the extravaganza. Still, construction on several of the proposed stadiums is behind schedule, and infrastructure upgrades have been delayed, as well. Will Brazil be ready for the games?

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Turkish Opposition Eyes Its Oppurtinity In March

Wed, 2014-01-22 13:00

Voters in Turkey go to the polls on March 30 to elect local officials, and the election is seen as the first chance for Turks to weigh in on a number of major controversies. These include Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's increasingly autocratic governing style, the growing repression of free speech and a corruption scandal that has claimed the jobs of three cabinet ministers thus far. The race for Istanbul mayor is seen as the best hope for Turkey's secular opposition to lift itself off the political mat and become a contender again.

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Pentagon, White House Are At Odds Over Afghanistan

Wed, 2014-01-22 13:00

The Pentagon is saying that it needs to keep 10,000 troops in Afghanistan after 2014 to train Afghans and maintain a counterterror mission. But military officials are once again running into interference from Vice President Joe Biden. That's nothing new: Biden in particular has for years pushed for a counterterror option of only several thousand troops, though the military says that number is far too small. The Pentagon argues that Biden's proposal would mean the U.S. forces would be largely consigned to their bases.

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Obama Launches Task Force To Combat Sexual Assault

Wed, 2014-01-22 13:00

At the White House on Wednesday, President Obama's Council on Women and Girls presented its report on sexual assault, calling it an epidemic especially on college campuses. The report claims that one in five women will experience a sexual assault in their lifetimes. Only 12 percent of victims actually report it, though.

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In Syrian Conference, Former Diplomat Hears Echoes Of The Balkans

Wed, 2014-01-22 13:00

As the peace conference on Syria begins in the Swiss city of Montreaux, Robert Siegel talks to Lord David Owen, the former British foreign secretary. They discuss Owen's experience with a similarly fraught peace process, when he sought to broker a peace plan between the Serbians and Bosnians in the 1990s.

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Syrian Peace Talks Open With Bitterness And A Bit Of Hope

Wed, 2014-01-22 13:00

The long-anticipated Syrian peace conference commenced on Wednesday in Montreux, Switzerland. The opening day marked the first time Syrian government and opposition members came together in the same room. Each side blamed the other for the three years of bloodshed in Syria. NPR's Deborah Amos offers a recap and analysis of the day's events from Switzerland.

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