National / International News

Inventor Ralph Baer, The 'Father Of Video Games,' Dies At 92

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-08 13:20

Video games have become a ubiquitous, billion-dollar industry, but all of the Playstations, Xboxes and Wiis can be traced back to the work of Robert Baer and his "Brown Box." He died Saturday.

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New Entry Program Reunites Some Immigrants With Their Children

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-08 13:07

A new State Department program would allow U.S.-based Latino parents to bring over children left in home countries. More than 57,000 children made the trip across the U.S.-Mexican border this year.

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Some Liberals And Tea Partiers Unite To Oppose Trade Deals

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-08 13:06

Environmentalists, union members and consumer advocates demonstrated against trade negotiators Monday. In an interesting political twist, many Tea Party Republicans agree with the liberal activists.

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Matthew claims 30th World Tour title

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-08 13:00
England's Nick Matthew becomes the ninth player to win 30 PSA World Tour titles with victory in the British Grand Prix.

How Washington's Odd Couple Transformed Welfare

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:54

The new book The Professor and the President looks back at how Democratic Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan pushed the Nixon White House to embrace a relatively liberal plan.

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Facing Threats From ISIS And Iran, Gulf States Set To Join Forces

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:40

The six-member Gulf Cooperation Council is expected to form an unprecedented, NATO-inspired joint military command. The growing strength of ISIS and Iran's influence has made cooperation more urgent.

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Olive Oil Producers In 'Crisis' From Weather, Pests And Disease

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:31

Global olive oil production is down. Italian groves have been especially hard hit by a disease that killed 1 million trees. Audie Cornish speaks with Curtis Cord, publisher of the Olive Oil Times.

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Big Mac Whacked: McDonald's U.S. Sales Continue To Slide

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:31

McDonald's is not loving its financial numbers. The fast-food chain reported that same-store sales in the U.S. tumbled 4.6 percent in November compared to a year ago, continuing a downward trend.

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GOP Leaders: Gas Tax Hike Could Fuel Fixes To Bad Roads And Bridges

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:31

Several states, including those led by Republicans, aren't waiting for Congress to shore up the federal highway trust fund and help pay for repairing worn out infrastructure.

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VIDEO: Sour reaction to 'Candy Crush MP'

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:27
Reaction to Conservative MP Nigel Mills who has apologised after being caught playing a popular puzzle game on his tablet computer during a parliamentary committee hearing.

Growing wages, job creation, and your money

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:16

321,000 jobs were added in November, with jobs in retail, health care, manufacturing, and professional and business services growing. Unemployment held steady at 5.8 percent.

Another significant change was the increase in hourly earnings for ordinary workers — at .4 percent, wage growth exceeded the anticipated increase by double. The U.S. has struggled with wage stagnation and the jobless rate, and this most recent report cast a sunny outlook for the future of both.

How have you been impacted by changes in the job market? Have you felt some of the benefits to a lower unemployment and rising wages? Tell us more about your experiences in the comments or @MarketplaceWKND.

VIDEO: Builders accused amid Qatar 2022 boom

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:14
Sue Lloyd-Roberts reports on the questions about worker safety, pay and conditions facing construction companies helping Qatar to prepare for World Cup 2022.

Manics to play Cardiff Castle gig

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:14
Manic Street Preachers will play Cardiff Castle for the first time as part of their The Holy Bible tour next year.

VIDEO: Downing Street is lit up for Christmas

BBC - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:13
The Christmas tree outside 10 Downing Street was lit up on Monday as a band played traditional Christmas music.

Obama Administration Unveils New Ban On Racial Profiling

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:12

Attorney General Eric Holder says he hopes state and local police will adopt the new guidelines for federal law enforcers.

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Starbucks, potential tech juggernaut?

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:08

If you’ve been to a Starbucks lately, you might’ve used your smartphone or noticed other customers using theirs to pay for their lattes.

Now Starbucks is taking another technological step forward by rolling out a fleet of Powermat wireless phone chargers in its stores.

They may help curb arguments with power-outlet hoarders, but the chargers serve a larger purpose – to burnish the Starbucks brand. The company's adoption of new technology is just as important to its image as the quality of its coffee beans, says Jonah Berger, a University of Pennsylvania marketing professor and author of the 2013 book “Contagious: Why Things Catch On.” 

“Starbucks is an older brand, you know, it's not the new kid on the block,” Berger says, “So, seeming like they're technology-forward, like they know what's going on ... will move [them] from [looking like] sort of a fuddy-duddy company to somebody that's on the cutting edge.”

But this strategy comes with risks, Berger says. If customers don't like the chargers, the technology could come off as gimmicky.

All sorts of restaurants are looking to technology to appeal to younger customers

“McDonald’s, the Coffee Bean, Madison Square Garden also use the Powermat. Starbucks is not the only one out there,” says Betsy Sigman, a Georgetown University business professor. 

When done right, Sigman says, access to new technology gives customers another reason to go to the restaurant and spend more.

Starbucks wants to do more than sell more coffee to young people, Berger says. It also wants to influence the way technology is adopted.

If Starbucks can become "the market-maker" for this technology – and Berger notes that it's a big "if" – the company could become a bigger player in the tech industry.

 

Sandwich Monday: Doritos Loaded

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:00

For this week's Sandwich Monday, we try 7-Eleven's latest creation, Doritos Loaded. They're a vaguely Doritos-shaped fried thing stuffed with cheese.

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Jeff Bezos on the best gift he's ever recieved

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:00

Ten years ago, we started calling up big names in business and culture and asking them, "What was the best gift you've received?"

In honor of Marketplace's 25th anniversary and the holiday season, we've pulled the "Best Gift Ever" series out of our archives. Here's the answer we got from Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, which originally aired in December 2004:

The best gift I ever received was all the construction toys that my grandfather gave me over the years when I was a little kid. You know, Lincoln Logs, Erector Sets, Legos. 

Every year I'd get a new construction toy of some kind. And then building things is something that has served me well all throughout the years. 

In fact, I love construction toys to this day, and I love them so much that for my fifth wedding anniversary, my wife gave me a huge, 5-foot-tall tool chest filled to the brim with Legos.

 

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Here's how the story originally played when it aired in 2004:

LISA NAPOLI: Time now for our Holiday feature, the Best Gift Ever.

JEFF BEZOS: My name is Jeff Bezos and I'm the founder and CEO of Amazon.com.

The best gift I ever received was all the construction toys that my grandfather gave me over the years when I was a little kid. You know, Lincoln Logs, Erector Sets, Legos.

Every year I'd get a new construction toy of some kind. And then building things is something that has served me well all throughout the years.

In fact, I love construction toys to this day, and I love them so much that for my fifth wedding anniversary, my wife gave me a huge five-foot-tall tool chest filled to the brim with Legos.

NAPOLI: Jeff Bezos is CEO of Amazon.com

BEZOS OUTTAKE: What really turned into the best gift was I then got to spend all of my summers working with him on his ranch. Ranchers build everything so I got to do the construction toys for real. We would arc weld gates and build fences and lay pipelines.

 

U.K. Lawmaker Apologizes For Playing 'Candy Crush Saga' At Hearing

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-08 12:00

Nigel Mills said his actions "fell short of what is expected of a member of Parliament." But a colleague defended him, saying hearings were "boring" and he himself had had trouble staying awake.

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