12:01am

Thu January 26, 2012
Space

Want To Make A Giant Telescope Mirror? Here's How

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 11:05 am

Giant Magellan Telescope
Giant Magellan Telescope

The world's largest mirrors for the world's largest telescopes are made under the football stadium at the University of Arizona.

Why there? Why not?

"We wanted some space, and it was just used for parking some cars, and this seemed like a good use," says Roger Angel.

Angel is the master of making big mirrors for telescopes. For 30 years he has been using a method called spin casting to make the largest solid telescope mirrors in the world.

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12:01am

Thu January 26, 2012
Planet Money

No, Hedge Funds Can't Foreclose On The Acropolis

Originally published on Mon May 7, 2012 12:12 pm

DIMITAR DILKOFF AFP/Getty Images

Greece is broke. But there's no blueprint for a country to declare bankruptcy, so Greece's creditors are sort of making things up as they go along.

"You're taking some sort of loss," Hans Humes of Greylock Capital Management told me. "But it's like, how much of a loss do you take? There's this thing called sovereign immunity. You can't go in and take the Acropolis."

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12:01am

Thu January 26, 2012
Middle East

Growing Pressures Prompt Plunge In Iranian Currency

An Iranian man counts banknotes after exchanging a gold coin for cash in Tehran on Monday. Gold coins were being exchanged for over 10 million rials as the Iranian currency continues to lose value against the U.S. dollar.
Atta Kenare AFP/Getty Images

The value of Iran's currency — which had been sliding steadily for months — took another plunge this week. Faced with new economic sanctions from the U.S. and Europe, the rial now seems to be in free fall.

But at least part of the dive could be linked to currency manipulation by the government itself in an effort to fund candidates in upcoming elections.

In images posted on the Internet, hundreds of Iranians are seen gathered outside the headquarters of the Bank Melli in Tehran Monday. They wanted to buy dollars, but there were no dollars to be had.

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12:01am

Thu January 26, 2012
Election 2012

'President Gingrich' Promises Permanent Moon Base

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 10:18 am

Republican presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich made campaign stops on Florida's Space Coast on Wednesday, saying space is part of America's destiny and outlining what he called a bold plan to send Americans to the moon and beyond. Here, the former House speaker delivers remarks outside a restaurant in Coral Springs, Fla.
Paul J. Richards AFP/Getty Images

Newt Gingrich, a self-described space nut, has long been a supporter of the U.S. space program. Now the Republican presidential hopeful is proposing what he calls a bold program that would send Americans back to the moon and beyond.

During a campaign event on Florida's Space Coast — hard-hit by the recession and the space program's uncertain future — Gingrich talked about coming of age at the time of Sputnik, the first satellite, launched in 1957 by the Soviet Union. He recalled reading science-fiction author Isaac Asimov and Missiles and Rockets magazine.

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6:35pm

Wed January 25, 2012
Music Interviews

Michelle Kwan's Slow And Steady Workout Jams

Originally published on Sun January 29, 2012 8:13 pm

Michelle Kwan performs at an exhibition in 2005.
Matthew Stockman Getty Images

This month, we're creating The Ultimate NPR Workout Mix. As many of us head back to the gym in the new year, we're asking people what music makes them move.

Today: the figure skating legend Michelle Kwan. For exercise, she says she runs and does Bikram yoga and Pilates. But there's one thing Kwan says she still enjoys more than anything else.

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6:20pm

Wed January 25, 2012
The Salt

Alice Waters: Picture Perfect As The Constant Gardener

Chefs Jose Andres and Alice Waters pose along side her newly installed portrait, by photographer Dave Woody, at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, on Jan. 20, 2012.
John Rose NPR

Alice Waters has moved from the kitchen to the garden to the soap box in her 40 years as a pioneer of the sustainable and locally grown food movement. But on one recent night, The Salt found her "hanging" in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington.

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6:01pm

Wed January 25, 2012
Business

Shoe Company Practices Insourcing For The Sole

Keen's Portland, Ore., factory is equipped to build up to 1.5 million pairs of shoes a year.
Courtesy of Keen

The American economy lost more than 5,000 jobs to offshore outsourcing in 2010, and in Tuesday's State of the Union address President Obama made it clear that he wants them back.

"We can't bring every job back that's left our shores," he said. "But right now, it's getting more expensive to do business in places like China. Meanwhile, America is more productive."

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5:51pm

Wed January 25, 2012
Presidential Race

Rep. Ron Paul: The Interview Transcript

Robert Siegel interviewed Rep. Ron Paul on All Things Considered on Jan. 25. This is an edited transcript of their conversation.

ROBERT SIEGEL: Representative Paul, welcome to the program once again.

REPRESENTATIVE RON PAUL (R-TX): Thank you. Good to be with you.

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5:35pm

Wed January 25, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Start Early To Curb Heart Risks For A Lifetime

Originally published on Wed January 25, 2012 7:03 pm

Yvan Dub iStockphoto.com

Heart disease remains the leading cause of death in the U.S. But who's at the most risk?

A study in the lastest New England Journal of Medicine offers a simple way to predict the risk of a fatal or debilitating heart attack or stroke for a middle-aged person over the rest of his or her life.

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5:13pm

Wed January 25, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

With Age, Men May Lose Thinking Ability Faster Than Women

Physical health problems may help drive men's mental decline.
iStockphoto.com

Men are more apt than women to lose thinking ability as they age, according to new research. And that mild cognitive impairment often leads to dementia.

But people can reduce their risk of mild cognitive impairment by staying healthy and educated, according to Rosebud Roberts, a professor of epidemiology at the Mayo Clinic who led the study. "There is a lot that people can do," she told Shots.

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