NPR News

Baio On World Cafe

4 hours ago

Chris Baio was the music director at his college radio station and in a band while studying at Columbia. Seems like a typical indie college-kid story — except that his band was none other than Vampire Weekend.

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It started with a boom and ended with a touchdown: Blue Origin, the space company founded by Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos, has sent a craft past the edge of space and then landed its rocket safely – and vertically — in Texas.

Every year before influenza itself arrives to circulate, misinformation and misconceptions about the flu vaccine begin circulating. Some of these contain a grain of truth but end up distorted, like a whispered secret in the Telephone game.

But if you're looking for an excuse not to get the flu vaccine, last year's numbers of its effectiveness would seem a convincing argument on their own. By all measures, last season's flu vaccine flopped, clocking in at about 23 percent effectiveness in preventing lab-confirmed influenza infections.

A 15-year-old boy died of Ebola in Liberia on Monday night, the first person in the country to perish from the disease since July, health officials say.

Listen to Dawes on Mountain Stage

6 hours ago

For the Thanksgiving holiday, Mountain Stage revisits one of its favorite broadcasts of this decade - a 2011 show which featured Jason Isbell, James McMurtry, Blitzen Trapper and Matthew Sweet. The episode closes with a set from Dawes, who perform this song, "A Little Bit of Everything."

Let's start with one thing that's clear and simple in Syria's messy war: Many foreign powers are engaged in the battle, and all share the goal of beating back the Islamic State.

This very loose grouping includes Turkey and Russia, who aren't best friends, but at least have this common interest in Syria that would seem to override any inclination to confront one another.

For a child with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, meeting the daily expectations of home and school life can be a struggle that extends to bedtime. The stimulant medications commonly used to treat ADHD can cause difficulty falling and staying asleep, a study finds. And that can make the next day that much harder.

Pope Francis is often seen as a champion of the downtrodden. He frequently speaks about poverty and the injustice of inequality.

During his upcoming visit to Africa — from Nov. 25 to 30 — he'll visit three countries with high rates of poverty and rapidly growing economies: Kenya, Uganda and the Central African Republic.

His presence is certain to attract a lot of attention. But will his visit benefit poor people in these countries? What kind of difference, if any, can a visit from the pope make?