It was almost one year ago that the space shuttle Atlantis rose into the sky on a pillar of flame for the last time. The shuttle program ended forever with that mission. American astronauts were left to hitch rides on Russian space capsules, and American kids were left with no tangible direction forward for their dreams of a high-tech, space-happy future.
Tomorrow morning, the unmanned Falcon 9 rocket is scheduled to lift off from Cape Canaveral so that supplies can reach the space station.
It's a good time to brew beer in America. According to beer expert Julia Herz, U.S. brewing isn't just on the upswing, it's on top. "We're now the No. 1 destination for beer, based on diversity and amount of beers," she says.
But if you want to see the strength of America's beer industry, you may want to look past beverage giants like Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors. According to the Brewers Association, nearly 2,000 American brewers operated during 2011 — the most since the 1880s.
Egypt's grand mufti, Ali Gomaa (center, with scarf), visits the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem in April. The Dome of the Rock, which is part of the same compound, is shown behind him. Many Muslims have boycotted the site because Israel claims sovereignty. But Palestinian religious figures now say they welcome such visits, a move that has sparked controversy.
For decades, Muslims around the world have been unofficially boycotting Islam's third holiest site, the Al-Aqsa mosque Jerusalem.
Many Muslims believe that visiting legitimizes Israel's claim to the site, which also sits atop the holiest place in Judaism. The Palestinians, meanwhile, are seeking a state with a capital in east Jerusalem, where the mosque is located.
But Palestinian religious authorities at Al-Aqsa and Palestinian officials are now calling on Muslims to visit the shrine, a change that is creating controversy within the Palestinian community.
If you're eligible to vote but aren't registered yet, watch out. They're coming to get you!
Campaigns, political parties and interest groups are all mounting massive voter registration campaigns this year to influence the outcome of the November elections.
The target is the millions of Americans — the Pew Center on the States estimates that number is 51 million — who are eligible to vote but not registered. The belief is that even a relative few of these voters could swing the election results.
Hispanic residents walk by a law office in Union City, N.J., specializing in immigration in March. Union City is one of the state's largest cities, and has a Hispanic population of more than 80 percent.
The U.S. Supreme Court's expected ruling in June on Arizona's immigration law will set the blueprint for states where many officials say they face a crisis in trying to crack down on rising numbers of illegal residents.
Yet population changes and various research indicate that the great flow primarily of Latino illegal immigrants, which lasted at least two decades, ended several years ago.
For years, Cushing, Okla., has been on the receiving end of a 500-mile pipeline funneling oil from the Gulf of Mexico to the American heartland.
Starting this weekend, that pipeline will start moving crude in the other direction. That flow reversal could soon have implications at gas pumps around the country.
"For 40 years, crude oil flowed north," says Philip Verleger, a visiting fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics. "Today, oil flows south. It's as if we turned the world upside down."
The movie Battleship, based on the popular board game, opens today in the U.S. In most respects, it's a typical popcorn picture — the kind of effects-laden action movie that audiences often turn into a summer blockbuster.
And while it may not be any good, it is undeniably ours — American from the water up: a Universal Studios picture about an alien invasion, crammed with special effects from Industrial Light and Magic and set largely on American warships.
Don't worry if you missed out on Facebook's initial public offering. Chances are, if you own shares in a broad-based index fund, you'll be holding onto some Facebook soon enough.
Facebook is such a huge offering -– with an initial market capitalization of more than $100 billion, it instantly becomes one of the 25 largest "cap" stocks — that it could have a distorting effect on some funds, at least in the short term.
Amr Moussa, a prominent figure during the rule of former President Hosni Mubarak, is the front-runner as Egyptians prepare to vote for president next week. He is shown here during a campaign event on the outskirts of Cairo on Wednesday.
Credit Mohamed Abd El Ghany / Reuters/Landov
Among the candidates in Egypt's presidential election is Mohammed Mursi of the Muslim Brotherhood. Here, his young supporters campaign for him on the outskirts of Cairo on Thursday.
When it comes to hepatitis C, things that happened to baby boomers back in the day can make all the difference.
One in 30 baby boomers is infected with virus, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And most of them don't know it. So, the CDC is moving ahead with a proposal that all baby boomers (born between 1945 and 1965) get a blood test to check for the virus.
The current guidelines call for testing when someone has known risk factors.
The president of Malawi vowed to overturn her country's ban on homosexual acts.
The BBC reports that President Joyce Banda made the vow in her first address to Parliament.
"Some laws which were duly passed by the August house... will be repealed as a matter of urgency... these include the provisions regarding indecent practices and unnatural acts," Banda said according to the BBC.
Following the release of what his campaign called his first ad of the general election, Romney participated in a "tele-town hall" with supporters in the swing states where the ad is running: Virginia, North Carolina, Ohio, and Iowa.
Mark Zuckerberg is, among many other things, the highest-profile taxpayer on the planet today.
After today's Facebook IPO, Zuckerberg will owe nearly $200 million in California state taxes alone. That's "among the largest tax liabilities that a single individual has ever paid at a given point in time," says Jason Sisney of the California State Budget Legislative Analyst's Office.
Zuckerberg's profits will be taxed at a 10% rate in California. That's a much higher rate than in many other states.
President Obama's performance in Tuesday's Arkansas primary won't be as embarrassing as what happened in West Virginia two weeks ago, when he gave up 41 percent of the vote to someone who happened to be sitting in a federal prison in Texas for embezzlement.
But it may well do more lasting damage to his party.
A unlikely coalition failed to derail the government's practice of holding terror suspects for indefinite periods of time.
Some Democrats and Tea Party Republicans put the issue to a vote through an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act that would have ended the practice but it ultimately failed, today, in the GOP-controlled house by a vote of 238 to 182.
Carlos Fuentes, one of the most influential writers in the Latin American world, died Tuesday at a hospital in Mexico City. He was 83. A prolific writer, Fuentes wrote novels, short stories and plays, as well as political nonfiction and essays that criticized the Mexican government during the 1980s and '90s.
Donna Summer, the queen of disco, died Thursday at her home in Naples, Fla., after a long struggle with cancer. She was 63. Born LaDonna Andrea Gaines, she grew up in a large Boston family singing gospel music and became an icon of a powerful cultural movement, a celebrated sex queen and a staple of gay club life.
Mitt Romney releases his first general election campaign ad. Plus wealthy GOP investors say their super PAC won't run a smear campaign connecting controversial pastor Jeremiah Wright with President Obama. Host Michel Martin discusses the latest political developments with Lenny McAllister of Politic365.com and author Michael Fauntroy.
I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, leaders of the G8 - that's the group of eight highly industrialized nations - are meeting at Camp David this weekend, but they're also joined by the leaders of some emerging African countries who will discuss the issue of food security on the continent. We'll talk more about that in a few minutes.
Some of the world's fastest growing economies are in Africa. But hunger is still a widespread reality there, and will be a major topic at this weekend's G8 summit. Host Michel Martin discusses efforts to fight hunger on the continent with USAIDs Tjada McKenna and Mwiza Munthali of the advocacy group TransAfrica.
Surplus and expired drugs collected during the DEA's fourth National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day. New research suggests it might be better for the environment to dispose of drugs in household trash.
Update at 1:17 p.m. ET. Support Afghanistan In 'Different Way':
During their meeting in the White House, President Francois Hollande, the new socialist leader of France, said he told President Obama that he was committed to withdrawing French troops from Afghanistan by the end of the year.
But, the AP reports, Hollande said he was committed to supporting Afghanistan in a "different way."
This was Obama's first meeting with Hollande.
The two leaders also said they wanted Greece to remain a part the European monetary union.