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All Tech Considered
5:29 pm
Thu October 23, 2014

Calling 911 On Your Cell? It's Harder To Find You Than You Think

The Fairfax County 911 Center in Virginia takes calls during Hurricane Sandy in 2012. It was relatively easy to locate callers when most people used landlines. But most 911 calls now come from cellphones, which can pinpoint a callers' location only within 100 to 300 meters.
Greg E. Mathieson Sr. Mai/Landov

Originally published on Thu October 23, 2014 5:57 pm

Today's mobile phones can do almost everything a computer can. But we still need them for their most basic purpose: making phone calls — especially in emergencies.

Yet existing technology can't always pinpoint a caller's location, particularly when a 911 caller is indoors.

The Federal Communications Commission has proposed new regulations for wireless carriers to help address the problem, but so far, wireless providers are resisting the changes.

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Around the Nation
5:13 pm
Thu October 23, 2014

Park Service Construction Damaged Native American Burial Sites

Jim Nepstad, superintendent of Effigy Mounds National Monument in northeast Iowa, stands at the top of a bluff looking over the Mississippi River.
Clay Masters NPR

Originally published on Thu October 23, 2014 7:43 pm

Imagine being able to drive an all-terrain vehicle right up next to a sacred earthen Native American burial mound.

At Effigy Mounds National Monument, you can. Three million dollars' worth of illegal construction projects went on for a decade at one of the nation's most sacred Native American burial grounds in northeast Iowa. And it happened under the watch of the National Park Service.

The park didn't do the proper archaeological studies before installing an intricate boardwalk system that now encircles ancient burial mounds that are shaped like bears and birds.

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Law
4:29 pm
Thu October 23, 2014

ACLU Challenges Miami Law On Behalf Of Homeless Sex Offenders

This encampment under the Julia Tuttle Causeway in Miami, shown in 2008, was cleared out by authorities in 2009. It was home to sex offenders who were unable to find places where they were permitted to live under Miami-Dade County's strict residency law. Although this makeshift community was broken up, homeless sex offenders continue to camp out in other areas of the county.
David Adame AP

Originally published on Thu October 23, 2014 7:15 pm

Miami-Dade County's sex offender residency restrictions — some of the tightest in the country — drew national attention a few years ago when an encampment of sex offenders sprang up on a causeway in Biscayne Bay. After a public outcry, local and state authorities evicted several dozen people, mostly men, from that makeshift settlement.

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Politics
4:28 pm
Thu October 23, 2014

Democrats Remain Optimistic About Senate, Gubernatorial Races

Originally published on Thu October 23, 2014 5:35 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Global Health
3:39 pm
Thu October 23, 2014

Why Do Ebola Mortality Rates Vary So Widely?

Originally published on Thu October 23, 2014 5:35 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Business
3:22 pm
Thu October 23, 2014

Cigarette-Maker Reynolds American To Ban Smoking At Work

The headquarters of Reynolds American in downtown Winston-Salem, N.C.. Starting in January, workers there will no longer be allowed to smoke at their desks.
Chris Keane Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu October 23, 2014 5:35 pm

Reynolds American, the country's second-largest cigarette-maker, is changing its policy on smoking in the office. Until now, Reynolds employees have been able to light up at their desks, but come January, workers will have to either go outside or use specially equipped smoking rooms.

"We allowed smoking of cigarettes, cigars, pipes, traditional tobacco products throughout our facilities," says David Howard, a spokesman for Reynolds American. He says it's not as though his co-workers chain-smoke at work.

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Music News
3:22 pm
Thu October 23, 2014

Who Sang It First? Mockingbirds And Musicians Cover Each Other In New Orleans

A short phrase New Orleans musicians use to communicate is identical to a common mockingbird call.
Sven Halling Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 23, 2014 6:47 pm

In certain New Orleans music scenes, there is a special sound — a signal — that lets players know it's time to pick up their instruments and strike up the band.

"It's a bugle call, or a band call, to assemble," trumpeter Leroy Jones says.

"It's like: C'mon, rally," musician Matt Bell adds. "Come to the bandstand and be ready to do it. Let's go."

The four-note phrase, however, doesn't belong to musicians alone. Another common New Orleans species, the mockingbird, also produces the call.

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Around the Nation
3:22 pm
Thu October 23, 2014

In Missouri, A Tale Of Two Fergusons

Originally published on Thu October 23, 2014 5:35 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

World
5:28 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Soldier, Gunman Dead After Ottawa Shooting

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Environment
4:26 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Coping In A Drier World: California's Drought Survival Strategy

The San Luis Reservoir in central California is the largest "off-channel" reservoir in the U.S. It is currently at less than 30 percent of its normal capacity.
Kirk Siegler NPR

Originally published on Wed October 22, 2014 6:44 pm

The past few years have been California's driest on record. Forecasters predict that punishing droughts like the current one could become the new norm.

The state uses water rationing and a 90-year-old water distribution system to cope until the rains come. The system is a huge network of dams, canals and pipes that move water from the places it rains and snows to places it typically doesn't, like farms and cities.

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