A century ago, people relied on nature to make basic things: toothbrushes were made of silver, combs were made of ivory, and clothes were made of cotton. In a lot of ways, life as we know it today, is possible because of plastic. We can now afford phones, computers and medical devices in part because of one chemist's discovery a century ago. But his descendants have some regrets.
NPR's Ari Shapiro speaks with Ingrid Jacques of the Detroit News editorial board about the paper's endorsement of libertarian candidate Gary Johnson.
NPR's Robert Siegel talks to the mayor of Hoboken, N.J., Dawn Zimmer, about the commuter train crash on Thursday that killed one person and injured more than 100.
A commuter train crashed into a rail station during morning rush hour in Hoboken, N.J., Thursday killing at least one person and injuring more than 100. Trains are among the safest modes of transportation in the world, and crashes in the U.S. are rare. Crash investigators explain what might have gone wrong.
Gary Bryner tells Studs Terkel about being a union member and working in an auto factory for General Motors. About 40 years later, he reflects on how factory work and the role of unions have changed.
NPR takes a look at the 2016 Senate races that matter to GOP prospects of maintaining control of the chamber.
NPR's Ari Shapiro talks to Ginette Hemley of the World Wildlife Fund about the CITES meeting and the challenges in trying to protect endangered species, particularly elephants.
Wednesday night's aurora borealis forecast was particularly strong, so Icelandic officials tried to reduce light pollution so the green glow would be more visible to people in the capital.
A fertilizer company says third-party tests show the water contaminated with low-level radiation has not leaked off the site into nearby wells. Residents are upset they were not informed for weeks.
The court decided to review a lower court decision that found the government could not deny trademarks because of an offensive name.
The band, led by singers Holly Laessig and Jess Wolfe, performs live in West Virginia.
Arnold's latest film, which won the Jury Prize at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival, tells the story of a group of abandoned teenagers who travel together selling magazine subscriptions door-to-door.
Producer Stephen Falk and actress Aya Cash discuss their FXX series about two self-centered people who fall in love. The characters are "stand-ins for the dark parts of all of us," Falk says.
There's a talent competition. A tiara for the winner. And a chance for people with HIV to speak out despite the stigma they face.
A new rule is the most significant overhaul of federal funding regulations for nursing homes in more than two decades. It bans so-called pre-dispute arbitration clauses in nursing home contracts.
A Silicon Valley start-up wants to use technology to solve the pizza paradox. It's a food that's meant to be delivered, but never tastes quite as good upon arrival.
Nissan unveiled the ProPilot chair, a high-tech self-driving seat that the automaker says makes waiting in line "easy and fun" by using technology designed for semi-autonomous cars.
A voucher awarded to a company that finds a treatment for a rare childhood disease can be sold to the highest bidder and then used to fast-track the review of another drug. Are the prizes worth it?
David Ortiz spent 14 seasons with the Boston Red Sox and helped the team win three World Series.
Regulators have voted to expand cellphone alerts to 360 characters from the previous cutoff at 90, and to begin including clickable URLs and phone numbers over the next year or so. But no photos, yet.