Alice McKennis has a metal plate and 11 screws in her leg after breaking it in 30 places in March. She's had other injuries before that, but she says it gives her an edge over the competition. "To make the Olympics is extremely hard," she says, "so it takes a certain kind of toughness."
Brazil is the world's third largest market for Facebook, the fifth largest for Twitter, and it has quickly become the largest market for Lulu, the controversial man-rating app for women. That has highlighted the country's race to pass legislation to keep up with a quickly changing society.
New York City's first new mayor in a dozen years was sworn in by former president Bill Clinton Wednesday. Bill de Blasio's term running the largest city in the U.S. will be markedly different than that of outgoing billionaire mayor Michael Bloomberg — if he follows through on campaign promises. De Blasio's populist platform offered remedies for the city's growing economic inequality, but he'll need approval from state legislators in Albany if he's to implement some of the policies.
The city of Wilmington, Del., is not large, about 71,000 residents. But its escalating gun violence problem compares to that of many larger cities. The effects on the community, in particular its youngest residents has city officials calling it a pandemic and they are seeking federal help.
The jazz artist Gregory Porter, who turned to singing when an injury ended his football career, claims three people as his main influences: his minister mother, his absentee father, and Nat King Cole. He discusses his musical life and the album Liquid Spirit with NPR's Audie Cornish.You can read more about Porter, and see a video of Porter singing on the New York City subway here.
He's the only man with two gold medals in Snowboard Cross from the Olympics, in 2006 and 2010. And now Seth Wescott of Maine is trying for a third in Sochi. But this time around, Wescott's recovering from a torn ACL and a broken tibia, injuries sustained during an annual snowboard trek in the rugged Alaska wilderness last April. Wescott knows it will be difficult to defend his title. But at 37 he's no shrinking violet. He's already setting his sights on the 2018 Olympics in South Korea, when he'll be 41 years old.
Wednesday marks the first day of legal recreational marijuana sales in Colorado. Audie Cornish talks with Ryan Cook, general manager of the The Clinic Medical Marijuana Center. The company has three growing facilities and six stores, one of which now offers recreational pot sales to those over the age of 21.
The Barclays Center in Brooklyn is home to the Brooklyn Nets. It's also home to some of the most advanced technology ever to come to a stadium or arena. Many older sports venues have struggled to keep pace with the latest developments in digital devices and social media. But that's hardly the case at Barclays. The venue even has its own app.
Some metal alloys will "remember" a shape when you heat them to the same temperature they were originally shaped at. So a straight wire made from one of these "shape memory alloys" might change back into a spring when heated, or vice versa. But the alloys that exist today change shape at low temperatures. Materials scientists at Sandia National Laboratory have developed new alloys that don't change shape until they reach hundreds of degrees, opening the door to thousands of new applications.
Archeologists who study the people who lived in the Arctic thousands of years ago are in a race against time. Coastal settlements are being washed away by erosion, storm surges and other climate changes related to global warming. Clues to the past that were frozen intact in permafrost for thousands of years are melting and being destroyed by the elements. Archeologists are looking to climate scientists to predict where the erosion will be the fastest so they can pinpoint their research on the places that will disappear the soonest. Until now the predictions have largely been too coarse to provide much guidance. But the National Park Service is trying to change this. It's funding research that supposed to forecast the threats that more than 100 coastal national parks face from sea level rise and storm surges due to climate change.
Japan's tough new law protecting state secrets was a victory for Washington, which had long pressured its Asian ally to exert tighter control over classified information. But the controversial law has triggered widespread outrage in Japan and undermined the popularity of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
In 2012, "massive open online courses" were lauded as the most important trend in higher education. But this year, educators and even students rebelled against the rapid expansion of online learning. Two of the biggest MOOCs say they're making big changes in how they deliver their classes in 2014.