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Joe's Big Idea
2:39 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Wanna Play? Computer Gamers Help Push Frontier Of Brain Research

This image represents a chunk, or "cube," of brain. Each different color represents a different neuron, and the goal of the EyeWire game is to figure out how these tangled neurons connect to each other. Players look at a slice from this cube and try to identify the boundaries of each cell. It isn't easy, and it takes practice. You can try it for yourself at eyewire.org.
EyeWire

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 2:39 pm

People can get pretty addicted to computer games. By some estimates, residents of planet Earth spend 3 billion hours per week playing them. Now some scientists are hoping to make use of all that human capital and harness it for a good cause.

Right now I'm at the novice level of a game called EyeWire, trying to color in a nerve cell in a cartoon drawing of a slice of tissue. EyeWire is designed to solve a real science problem — it aims to chart the billions of nerve connections in the brain.

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Author Interviews
2:38 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Skipping Out On College And 'Hacking Your Education'

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 4:18 am

The cost of college can range from $60,000 for a state university to four times as much at some private colleges. The total student debt in the U.S. now tops credit card debt. So a lot of people are asking: Is college really worth it?

There are several famous and staggeringly successful college dropouts, including Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates and Larry Ellison. You may not end up with fat wallets like them, but Dale Stephens says you can find a different education path.

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Author Interviews
2:36 am
Tue March 5, 2013

To 'Sum It Up': A Legendary Basketball Coach Braves Alzheimer's

Pat Summitt celebrates the Lady Vols' first national championship, in 1987. Summitt says it took seven Final Four losses to learn how to win one.
J. Miles Cary Courtesy of the Knoxville News-Sentinel

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 9:21 am

The image of Pat Summitt for many fans is that of a madwoman, decked out in orange, yelling to her players from the sideline. In 38 years as the head coach of the University of Tennessee Lady Vols basketball team, Summitt shouted her team to more victories than any other coach in the history of college basketball — men's or women's.

Now the famously fierce coach is facing an opponent unlike any other: In 2011, she was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's disease.

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Your Money
2:35 am
Tue March 5, 2013

For Baby Boomers, Lessons In Financial Basics

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon April 1, 2013 12:54 pm

The oldest of the baby boomers came of age in the 1960s and are beginning to retire. Their younger cohorts are still putting kids through college and building careers. Baby boomers are a giant portion of the population — 78 million people, by one estimate.

They grew up in an era of rising living standards, but the Great Recession destroyed any sense of financial security — and many nest eggs. Financial planner Tim Maurer outlines a variety of issues boomers face.

Who is a baby boomer, and what defines their financial situations?

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Author Interviews
2:34 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Jeb Bush: Legal Residency, Not Citizenship, For Illegal Immigrants

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush speaks during the Republican National Convention in August in Tampa, Fla.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 7:44 am

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, the son and brother of presidents, says the United States should overhaul its laws to make immigration easier and to give illegal immigrants a way to legal residence, not citizenship.

Bush lays out his plan with co-author Clint Bolick in the new book Immigration Wars. Bush tells NPR's Steve Inskeep that they propose legalizing undocumented immigrants "after there is a recognition that if people come here illegally, they have to pay a fine or do community service [and] make sure they don't commit any serious crimes."

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