Jon Sarkin was working as a chiropractor when he suffered a massive stroke. Afterwards, the 35-year-old became a volatile visual artist with a ferocious need to create, as his brain tried to make sense of the world at large.
"[My artwork is] a manifestation of what happened to me," Sarkin tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "I've learned how to visually represent my existential dilemma caused by my stroke."
Robots have started peering around inside the stricken Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant. That represents a major step toward stabilizing Japan's heavily damaged reactors, as Geoff Brumfiel reports:
The robots were built by the Massachusetts company iRobot and are usually used by the military to investigate bombs. They're small vehicles with a single claw for poking around. The ones that entered the reactor buildings are specially equipped with cameras and radiation detectors, which can give workers a better idea about conditions inside.
Standard & Poor's, a big ratings agency, is getting nervous about the United States' ability to pay its debt.
The agency lowered its outlook for the U.S. to negative this morning. That's essentially a warning.
It means that the U.S. is still a super-safe country to lend money to, in S&P's view. But if the U.S. doesn't get its act together in the next few years, that will change. (Here's a PDF of the full report from S&P.)
Well, it's that time of year. Friday is Earth Day, and this is the week that some of us pause to ponder the health of our planet (while others of us spend the week yelling at the people who are pausing to ponder the health of the planet). Being a pauser, not a yeller, I thought I'd spend this week sharing with you, especially the younger set of you, a series of cartoon essays about ... carbon. Why carbon?
"Water may be the solvent of the universe," writes Natalie Angier in her classic introduction to science, The Canon, "but carbon is the duct tape of life."
Last fall on All Songs Considered, I shared a cut from one of my favorite acts of 2010, Mount Kimbie. When the show taped, I was in the middle of my love affair with Crooks and Lovers, a polished debut that felt both precise and spontaneous in its arrangements. Again and again, I wandered through the album's nuanced sounds: everything from unblemished pops echoing down winding tunnels to pitched-up samples of recent R&B. These were isolated, intimate listening sessions between my headphones and me.
The vast majority of the world's books, music, films, television and art, you will never see. It's just numbers.
Consider books alone. Let's say you read two a week, and sometimes you take on a long one that takes you a whole week. That's quite a brisk pace for the average person. That lets you finish, let's say, 100 books a year. If we assume you start now, and you're 15, and you are willing to continue at this pace until you're 80. That's 6500 hundred books, which really sounds like a lot.
In March, Arbitron released its national broadcast estimates for the Fall 2010 survey. National radio ratings are released twice a year and provide radio networks across the United States the opportunity to see how network shows are performing in terms of measured audience.