Alabama authorities say a home burglary suspect has died after police used a stun gun on the man.  Birmingham police say he resisted officers who found him in a house wrapped in what looked like material from the air conditioner duct work.  The Lewisburg Road homeowner called police Tuesday about glass breaking and someone yelling and growling in his basement.  Police reportedly entered the dwelling and used a stun gun several times on a white suspect before handcuffing him.  Investigators say the man was "extremely irritated" throughout and didn't obey verbal commands.

Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit Montgomery-ed.org

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.

NPR Politics presents the Lunchbox List: our favorite campaign news and stories curated from NPR and around the Web in digestible bites (100 words or less!). Look for it every weekday afternoon from now until the conventions.

Convention Countdown

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.

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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.

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

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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.

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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.

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Microsoft, An Empire Under Siege, Makes Its Next Moves

Oct 23, 2012
Originally published on October 23, 2012 6:49 pm

Microsoft, the company that defined the PC, is still enormously profitable — but not as profitable as it once was.

This week, Microsoft will try to regroup. It is rolling out the largest upgrade of its Windows software in more than a decade. All of this is meant to help the company break into the exploding market for mobile.

While the company still commands a formidable computing empire, it is now under attack.

Microsoft's CEO is Steve Ballmer, a big, bombastic, balding guy. These days he's riled up about Windows 8.

"Windows is the backbone product of Microsoft," Ballmer said at the company's Worldwide Partner Conference in July. "Windows PCs, Windows Phones, Windows slates. Windows, Windows, Windows, Windows, Windows."

But every time I've seen Ballmer speak recently, my mind wanders to Winston Churchill, who famously said: "We shall fight on the seas and oceans. We shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air ..."

Ballmer is no Winston Churchill. He's not fighting Nazis, and he'll never win a Nobel Prize in literature. But like Churchill, Ballmer is a man who commands an empire that is under siege.

"The industry continues to move and change and advance dramatically," Ballmer said.

But most analysts say Microsoft has not. Last quarter, the company's profits fell 22 percent. PC sales have stalled. And Microsoft has been left behind in mobile.

"Microsoft always sees itself as besieged," says Joshua Shapiro, head of the technology consulting group Princeton Analytics.

And right now Shapiro says it actually is besieged.

"Google has gone after Microsoft in a very clear way, attacking Microsoft's major profit sources, which are the operating system and its office productivity suite," he says. Shapiro is talking about the programs installed on roughly a billion computers: Windows and Microsoft Office.

"And Google has tried to essentially give away what Microsoft sells. So this is a huge threat," Shapiro says.

But that's just the beginning. Shapiro and others argue that Microsoft has fallen behind on the most important technology trends of the past 15 years: the rise of the Internet and e-commerce, search and social.

In mobile, Microsoft is years behind. Its new operating system, Windows 8, will work on tablets and with touch, and it's supposed to help it catch up.

Charles Golvin, a mobile market analyst at Forrester, says Microsoft is actually facing three enormous, focused, well-managed adversaries: Google, Apple and Amazon.

"This is a battle of ecosystems," Golvin says. "It's not a world of competition among devices. It's not a world of competition for communication services and media consumption."

Instead, everything is rolled together. If you buy an iPhone, you're probably more likely to buy your movies and music from Apple, too. Ditto with Amazon's Kindle or devices running Google's Android.

Microsoft — if it has a strategy — is probably trying to be a fast follower, Shapiro says.

He says Surface, Microsoft's new tablet, is kind of like an iPad with an Excel spreadsheet.

And then, Shapiro says, there's "the Microsoft version of the Apple store, and the Microsoft version of the Apple app store, and the Microsoft version of Apple design."

The company is leveraging the fact that millions of us are required to use Microsoft products at work as a way to sell us products that are almost like Apple's.

But both Shapiro and Golvin agree it would be a big mistake to write off Microsoft.

"Their core products, Windows and Office, continue to generate a lot of revenue," Golvin says.

Golvin says some of Microsoft's own innovations — especially in mobile phones — are now being imitated by its competitors. But the biggest reason not to underestimate Microsoft, Golvin and Shapiro say, is that this company is tenacious.

Or as Churchill said: "We shall never surrender."

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

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Is it only Tuesday? Anyway, it's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene.

We're going to talk now about two companies that are not what they used to be. They are trying to keep up with a changing world.

INSKEEP: Newsweek, a staple of newsstands for decades, announced last week it is suspending its print edition after years of large financial losses. And we'll hear from Newsweek's editor in a moment.

GREENE: But first, Microsoft, the company that defined the PC, is still enormously profitable, just not as profitable as it once was. This week Microsoft will try to regroup. It is rolling out the largest upgrade of its Windows software in more than decade. All of this is meant to help the company break into the exploding market for mobile devices. Here's NPR's Steve Henn.

STEVE HENN, BYLINE: Microsoft's CEO is Steve Ballmer. And he's this big, bombastic, balding guy. These days he's pretty riled up about Windows 8.

STEVE BALLMER: Windows is the backbone product of Microsoft. Windows PCs, Windows phones, Windows slate. Windows, Windows, Windows...

HENN: But every time I've seen him speak recently, my mind begins to wander.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED AUDIO)

WINSTON CHURCHILL: We shall fight on the seas and oceans. We shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air...

HENN: Steve Ballmer is no Winston Churchill. He's not fighting the Nazis. He'll never win a Nobel Prize in literature. But like Churchill, Ballmer is a man who commands an empire that is under siege.

BALLMER: The industry continues to move, and change and advance dramatically.

HENN: But most analysts say Microsoft has not. Last quarter, the company's profits fell 22 percent. PC sales have stalled. And Microsoft has been left behind in mobile. Joshua Shapiro runs Princeton Analytics, a technology consulting group.

JOSHUA SHAPIRO: Microsoft always sees itself as besieged.

HENN: And right now, Shapiro says it actually is.

SHAPIRO: Google has gone after Microsoft in a very clear way, attacking Microsoft's major profit sources, which are the operating system and its office productivity suite.

HENN: Shapiro's talking about the programs installed on roughly a billion computers: Windows and Microsoft Office.

SHAPIRO: And Google has tried to essentially give away what Microsoft sells. So this is a huge threat.

HENN: And that's just the beginning. Shapiro and others argue that Microsoft has fallen behind on the most important technology trends of the past 15 years: the rise of the Internet and e-commerce, search and social. In mobile, Microsoft is years behind. Its new operating system, Windows 8, will work on tablets and with touch, and it's supposed to help it catch up.

CHARLES GOLVIN: This is a battle of ecosystems.

HENN: Charles Golvin is a mobile market analyst at Forrester. He says Microsoft is actually facing three enormous, focused, well-managed adversaries: Google, Apple and Amazon.

GOLVIN: It's not a world of competition among devices. It's not a world of competition for communication services and media consumption.

HENN: Instead, everything is rolled together. If you buy an iPhone, you're probably more likely to buy your movies and music from Apple, too. Ditto with Amazon's Kindle, or devices running Google's Android. Microsoft, if it has a strategy, is probably trying to be a fast follower, says Shapiro. He says the Surface, Microsoft's new tablet, is kind of like an iPad with an Excel spreadsheet. And then there's...

SHAPIRO: The Microsoft version of the Apple store and the Microsoft version of the Apple app store and the Microsoft version of Apple design...

HENN: It's leveraging the fact that millions of us are required to use Microsoft products at work to sell us products that are almost like Apple's. But both Shapiro and Forrester's Charlie Golvin agree, it would be a big mistake to write off Microsoft.

GOLVIN: Their core products, Windows and Office, continue to generate a lot of revenue.

HENN: Golvin says some of Microsoft's own innovations, especially in mobile phones, are now being imitated by its competitors. But the biggest reason not to underestimate Microsoft, say Golvin and Shapiro, is that this company is tenacious.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED AUDIO)

CHURCHILL: We shall never surrender.

HENN: Steve Henn, NPR News, Silicon Valley. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.