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The Republican National Convention is in 4 days in Cleveland.

The Democratic National Convention is in 11 days in Philadelphia.

NASA has released the first picture of Jupiter taken since the Juno spacecraft went into orbit around the planet on July 4.

The picture was taken on July 10. Juno was 2.7 million miles from Jupiter at the time. The color image shows some of the atmospheric features of the planet, including the giant red spot. You can also see three of Jupiter's moons in the picture: Io, Europa and Ganymede.

The Senate is set to approve a bill intended to change the way police and health care workers treat people struggling with opioid addictions.

My husband and I once took great pleasure in preparing meals from scratch. We made pizza dough and sauce. We baked bread. We churned ice cream.

Then we became parents.

Now there are some weeks when pre-chopped veggies and a rotisserie chicken are the only things between us and five nights of Chipotle.

Parents are busy. For some of us, figuring out how to get dinner on the table is a daily struggle. So I reached out to food experts, parents and nutritionists for help. Here is some of their (and my) best advice for making weeknight meals happen.

"O Canada," the national anthem of our neighbors up north, comes in two official versions — English and French. They share a melody, but differ in meaning.

Let the record show: neither version of those lyrics contains the phrase "all lives matter."

But at the 2016 All-Star Game, the song got an unexpected edit.

At Petco Park in San Diego, one member of the Canadian singing group The Tenors — by himself, according to the other members of the group — revised the anthem.

School's out, and a lot of parents are getting through the long summer days with extra helpings of digital devices.

How should we feel about that?

Police in Baton Rouge say they have arrested three people who stole guns with the goal of killing police officers. They are still looking for a fourth suspect in the alleged plot, NPR's Greg Allen reports.

"Police say the thefts were at a Baton Rouge pawn shop early Saturday morning," Greg says. "One person was arrested at the scene. Since then, two others have been arrested and six of the eight stolen handguns have been recovered. Police are still looking for one other man."

A 13-year-old boy is among those arrested, Greg says.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

After an international tribunal invalidated Beijing's claims to the South China Sea, Chinese authorities have declared in no uncertain terms that they will be ignoring the ruling.

The Philippines brought the case to the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, objecting to China's claims to maritime rights in the disputed waters. The tribunal agreed that China had no legal authority to claim the waters and was infringing on the sovereign rights of the Philippines.

Donald Trump is firing back at Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg after she disparaged him in several media interviews. He tweeted late Tuesday that she "has embarrassed all" with her "very dumb political statements" about the candidate. Trump ended his tweet with "Her mind is shot - resign!":

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Getting Slower And Slower: How Slow Can You Go?

Sep 21, 2012
Originally published on September 21, 2012 11:36 am

Before we go slow, let's go fast, so fast you can't go any faster. That would be light in a vacuum, traveling at 670 million miles per hour ...

Light, of course, can slow down. When light passes through water, it loses speed. A diamond is an even better speed bump. It can slow a beam of light by 40 percent.

But moving on, you and I are going pretty fast right now, though we don't notice. The planet we're on is zipping around the sun at 66,000-plus miles per hour ...

You'd think there would be wind whipping through our hair, but no, we're cocooned by the Earth's atmosphere, so we have no easy way to sense our motion. We could, of course, leave the Earth and watch our planet from a distance, but to do that, we'd have to kick off the surface, and that takes a lot of speed. ...

In fact, getting away from something often requires a speedy ejection. Take sneezing. You breathe in an irritant, say, a prickly dust particle, your body tenses and ...

... out it flies — at up to 104 mph.

You can't run away from something that fast. The fastest runners we have — at full sprint — don't do much better than ...

... 26, 27 mph. That's how fast Jamaican champion Usain Bolt can go. Most of us are content to waddle along at a much slower pace.

... which still makes us much faster than the slowest waddlers, who don't really waddle; snails seem to slide on their own mucus, which makes them icons of slow-ocity. ...

By now we're getting down to truly slow, slow-motion speeds that describe the growth rate of bamboo (1.3 x 10-6 miles per hour), or slower still, this is the average growth rate of a child — expressed in miles per hour.

We can go even slower. The moon is drifting away from the Earth. Three billion years ago it was bigger in our sky, but its retreat is so delicate, you'd never know it was moving unless you painstakingly measure the widening distance.

And even slower than that — as this is as slow as I'm going to go in this post, because you have to stop somewhere — is what's happening at the ends of your fingers and toes. We know nails grow. But in miles per hour, they achieve a kind of Gold Medal of Sluggishness.

But before I conclude, to show you that we're nowhere near the slowest of the slows, I want you to imagine a pile of uranium atoms (think of lots of electrons spinning around a big, fat nucleus). Now, close your eyes, and keep them shut for 4.47 billion years. When you open them, half those atoms will no longer be uranium. They will have decayed into something else. Their rate of decay, their "half life," 4.47 billion years, is roughly the age of our planet. Talk about slow. That's really slow.


I got these numbers from a chart labeled "Speed" in David Blatner's new book, Spectrums. I know I've been cribbing off of Blatner a lot this week, but that's because his little volume about scaling is so provocative. He just gets me thinking.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.