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9:40 am
Tue January 3, 2012

Stephen Hawking: Exploring An 'Unfettered Mind'

Palgrave Macmillan

Originally published on Tue January 3, 2012 11:09 am

Make a list of the world's most popular scientists, and Stephen Hawking's name will be near or at the very top of the list.

Hawking, the author of A Brief History of Time and a professor at the University of Cambridge, is known as much for his contributions to theoretical cosmology and quantum gravity as for his willingness to make science accessible for the general public, says science writer Kitty Ferguson.

"It's not dumbing down [science]; it's really making it accessible, hopefully, to a lot of people," she tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross.

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The Two-Way
9:34 am
Tue January 3, 2012

Construction Spending Increases, Signaling Continued Economic Growth

In yet another sign that the economy is limping forward, the Commerce Department said today that spending on construction rose 1.2 percent in November for the third time in four months.

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Politics
9:18 am
Tue January 3, 2012

Candidates Make Last Push Before Iowa Voting Begins

Supporters of Republican presidential hopeful Ron Paul rally for their candidate during a campaign stop Monday in Cedar Falls, Iowa.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Republican presidential candidates prepared Tuesday for their first major test of the primary season, making last-minute whistle-stops throughout Iowa in hopes of swaying many undecided caucus-goers.

Later tonight, Iowa Republicans will gather to cast ballots for the person they want to stand against President Obama in November. But after a bruising months-long campaign, more than a third of those participating in the caucuses say they still haven't made up their minds.

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It's All Politics
9:12 am
Tue January 3, 2012

Santorum Explains His Comments About Black People And Entitlements

Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum speaks during a campaign event at the Pizza Ranch restaurant in Boone, Iowa on Monday.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

If you were listening carefully to NPR's Ted Robbin's report on Rick Santorum on Morning Edition, yesterday, you heard some pretty controversial comments from the Republican presidential candidate.

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Around the Nation
9:06 am
Tue January 3, 2012

No, The School Nurse Is Not In

More than half of American public schools don't have a full-time nurse, and the situation is getting worse as school systems further cut budgets. This year, 51 were laid off in Philadelphia's public schools, 20 in a Houston suburb, 15 in San Diego and dozens more in other school systems nationwide.

Other schools have reduced their school nurse staffing.

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