Book News: J.K. Rowling Tells 'Harry Potter' Backstories
Quidditch was invented "in a small hotel in Manchester after a row with my then boyfriend," writes the Harry Potter creator. Other book news: Ireland puts an entire short story on a postage stamp; Daniel Handler on Midwestern literature; and the best books coming out this week.
Nation's Midsection Braces For More Severe Storms
From Texas to the upper Great Lakes, forecasters are warning that the weather will be rough Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Tornadoes are possible in the Plains States. Elsewhere, severe thunderstorms ? some with hail ? are likely. One man was killed in Oklahoma Sunday when a tornado came through.
2 FBI Agents Killed In Training Accident In Virginia
The accident happened off the coast of Virginia Beach on Friday, the FBI's national press office announced in a statement Sunday. No other details were given and the cause is under investigation.
Advocates Struggle To Reach Growing Ranks Of Suburban Poor
The number of poor people living in America's suburbs now surpasses those in cities or rural areas. Long focused on the urban poor, social service agencies are now trying to respond to the basic needs of a much more far-flung population.
Is There Really A Second-Term Curse?
Whether it's President Richard Nixon's resignation or President Bill Clinton's impeachment, presidents tend to have a tough time during the back half of an eight-year presidency.
Nostalgia For Sale As Captain Kangaroo's Pals Are Auctioned Off
A giant lot of Captain Kangaroo memorabilia goes on the auction block this week in Los Angeles. Among the items up for auction are several of the Captain's signature jackets, Mr. Grean Jeans' famous jeans and the life-sized costume worn by Dancing Bear.
Children Of China's Wealthy Learn Expensive Lessons
Some super-rich Chinese are sending their kids to weekend classes in order to learn how to deal with money. The lessons include things like a charity sale designed to teach the children compassion, sharing and the value of money.
If Your Shrink Is A Bot, How Do You Respond?
A computer-simulated woman named Ellie is designed to talk to people who are struggling emotionally and take their measure ? 30 times per second. Researchers hope their technology, which reads a person's body language and inflections, will yield diagnostic clues for clinical therapists.
Bans Of Same-Sex Marriage Can Take A Psychological Toll
When several states passed laws banning same-sex marriages, researchers found that the mental health of gay residents seemed to suffer. Conversely, stress-related disorders dropped after the legalization of gay marriage in one state. Researchers say negative media portrayals and loss of safety were contributing factors.
Seeing The (Northern) Light: A Temporary Arctic Retirement
Inspired by a TED talk, Winston Chen quit his software job and moved to a tiny Norwegian island with wife and kids. He spent the year enjoying the outdoors with his family and the winter darkness writing an iPhone app, something he would never have done without his self-imposed sabbatical.
Tornadoes Level Homes In Oklahoma, 1 Dead
Tornadoes ravaged portions of central Oklahoma on Sunday, reducing portions of a mobile home park to rubble and killing a 79-year-old man whose body was found out in the open. Twisters, hail and high winds also struck Iowa and Kansas as part of a massive, northeastward-moving storm system that stretched from Texas to Minnesota.
Syrian Troops Target Key Rebel-Held Town
Qusair is a strategically important town that lies between Homs, where the Syrian uprising began two years ago, and the Lebanese border. If President Bashar Assad's troops ? reportedly backed by Hezbollah fighters ? regain the town, they would control an important route from the coast to the capital, Damascus.
Young Kenyans Build Mobile Apps For Local Use
College students and recent graduates crammed the top floor of a tech hub in Nairobi for a competition built around the theme "Solutions for the Next Billion Mobile Users." Africa has more than 600 million mobile phone users (approximately 11 percent of the global total) ? and the number is growing.
Two Excerpts You Should Read From Obama's Morehouse Speech
President Obama delivered a rare, very personal speech during the commencement ceremony at the historically black college.
North Korea Fires Another 'Short-Range Projectile'
Like the missiles on Saturday, the projectile missed neighboring countries. The U.S. called the launch "provocations."