National / International News

Baby helmets 'have no added value'

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 15:40
Corrective baby helmets have virtually no effect on a baby's head shape, a study suggests.

Iraq: A proxy battleground in a regional war

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 15:29
How Iraq is becoming proxy battleground in regional struggle

Quiz of the week's news

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 15:20
Which supposed urban legend was proved true with a desert dig?

VIDEO: How politicians deal with an egging

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 15:10
As UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage is egged by a protester, Newsnight looks back at a few similar incidents.

Man who inspired Steve McQueen's character in The Great Escape

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 15:05
The man who inspired The Great Escape, and others

Mass tests to track risk of dementia

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 15:05
A third of a million UK adults are to be asked to complete online reasoning and memory tests as part of a project to try to track dementia causes.

The cat-and-mouse world of US tax

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 15:00
The cat-and-mouse world of US tax

The best dyed cloth in the world?

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 15:00
The best dyed cloth in the world?

Tunisia MPs approve electoral law

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 14:28
Tunisia's interim parliament takes one of the last steps towards the country becoming a full democracy by approving a new electoral law.

'Dark policing' behind Adams arrest

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 14:13
Sinn Fein's Martin McGuinness claims Gerry Adams' arrest is due to a "dark side" within policing and is a "deliberate attempt to influence the outcome of elections" later this month.

Mamma Mia! Italian Chains Make Fast-Food Fare Look Light

NPR News - Thu, 2014-05-01 14:11

A new report details the diet-busting fare at popular Italian chains, like Maggiano's 1,680-calorie shrimp scampi pasta dish. It has about three times the calories of one Big Mac.

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Deadly 'gas blast' at Florida jail

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 14:08
An apparent gas explosion at a jail in Pensacola, Florida, kills two inmates and injures more than 180, forcing an evacuation, local officials say.

Oklahoma Issues Timeline Of Botched Execution

NPR News - Thu, 2014-05-01 14:04

The timeline shows that on the day of the execution, Clayton D. Lockett cut himself and was hit with a stun gun. It took a phlebotomist 51 minutes to find a vein, before settling on one in his groin.

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VIDEO: Retrieved phones record ferry sinking

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 13:52
Footage from retrieved mobile phones shows some of the last moments recorded by passengers aboard the South Korean ferry which sank off Jindo island two weeks ago.

The IMF gave Ukraine $17 billion. Now what?

Marketplace - American Public Media - Thu, 2014-05-01 13:49

Ukraine is getting a $17 billion International Monetary Fund loan package. Ukraine’s leadership now faces an unusual challenge: deciding how to spend the money when an important chunk of the country is under pro-Russian control.

“However they spend this money, they’re going to try to make sure they do it in a way that’s not going to entice or instigate Russian aggression,” says University of Mississippi political scientist Jeff Carter.

Some of the money will help Ukraine settle a multi-billion dollar gas bill with Russia, among other creditors. Deciding where the money goes will have political consequences that could determine the future borders of the country.

“If it doesn’t have the Eastern part of the country, the industrialized part, it loses a lot of the economic clout and wealth of the country. It also leaves itself open to further destabilization by the Russian government,” says Nicholas Burns, a former U.S. Ambassador to NATO, now a professor at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. “It’s a fateful moment if we want to see an integrated Ukraine survive.”

In pictures: US flooding and storms

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 13:42
Major storm systems hit the eastern half of the US

Android Silver: Forcing manufacturers to toe Google's line

Marketplace - American Public Media - Thu, 2014-05-01 13:41

At the moment you buy an Android phone, like a Samsung Galaxy S5, Google doesn’t make a penny. The Android operating system is free to other companies. Google just wants you to use Gmail, and its search engine and look at ads.

“They get paid by those brand advertisers," says Brian Blau, research director in consumer technologies at Gartner. "That’s really how they make money from Android.”

Giving it away got Android on lots and lots of devices—it now dominates the smartphone market. But lately some of those phone manufacturers haven’t been playing along with Google’s plan. 

“Samsung has a lot of apps that would compete directly with some of the apps from Google itself,” Blau says. 

Companies like HTC and Samsung give Android extreme makeovers: their own look, feel, even services that take a bite out of Google revenue. Amazon’s Android-based devices, like the Kindle Fire, cut Google out completely. 

This, obviously, is bad for Google. 

“Without being able to monetize it, it makes it slightly pointless,” says Nick Spencer, senior practice director at ABI Research. He says Google has lost control of Android. Fourth quarter last year, he says, 50 million Android devices shipped that have no benefit to Google.  

This is why reports say Google is working on a program called Android Silver: new phones that meet its standards for design and interface, and services. They would get priority for new features and, Google hopes, put an end to all the fragmentation. 

Spencer says this could force many manufacturers to toe the Google line.  

“Certainly, the weaker brands, through competitive pressure, will have to adopt Android Silver,” he says. 

One day, though, this could drive powerful manufacturers like Samsung to adopt their own operating systems that they can control.

Baby ash inquiry 'not ruled out'

BBC - Thu, 2014-05-01 13:37
A public inquiry into the baby ashes scandal has not been ruled out, Scotland's public health minister tells MSPs.

Boxers, briefs or radiation underwear? Silicon Tally!

Marketplace - American Public Media - Thu, 2014-05-01 13:35
Friday, May 2, 2014 - 04:00 David Ramos/Getty Images for CR7

Cristiano Ronaldo poses in front of a 19m high billboard during the global launch of the CR7 by Cristiano Ronaldo Underwear line

It's time for Silicon Tally. How well have you kept up with the week in tech news?

This week we're joined by Kara Miller, host of WGBH’s Innovation Hub. var _polldaddy = [] || _polldaddy; _polldaddy.push( { type: "iframe", auto: "1", domain: "marketplaceapm.polldaddy.com/s/", id: "silicon-tally-may-2", placeholder: "pd_1398982571" } ); (function(d,c,j){if(!document.getElementById(j)){var pd=d.createElement(c),s;pd.id=j;pd.src=('https:'==document.location.protocol)?'https://polldaddy.com/survey.js':'http://i0.poll.fm/survey.js';s=document.getElementsByTagName(c)[0];s.parentNode.insertBefore(pd,s);}}(document,'script','pd-embed')); Marketplace Tech for Friday, May 2, 2014 by Ben JohnsonPodcast Title Boxers, briefs or radiation underwear? Silicon Tally!Story Type InterviewSyndication SlackerSoundcloudStitcherSwellPMPApp Respond No

Doctors Think The Other Guy Often Prescribes Unnecessary Care

NPR News - Thu, 2014-05-01 13:22

Three out of 4 physicians say that their fellow doctors order wasteful tests or procedures at least once a week, a nationwide poll finds.

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