Well, the subject of our last word in business today may not change the world, but it is kind of snazzy. It is called the Air Umbrella. Now, picture an umbrella handle and nothing else, sort of like a wand.
RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:
Yeah. We are entering a magic world, here. That wand apparently keeps you dry by releasing a shield of air. The tech website Mashable says it's still a design concept, but in theory, you could adjust the power and size of your invisible air shield depending on how heavily it's raining.
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner says it's up to congressional Republicans to take the next step in budget talks to avoid the pending automatic spending cuts and tax increases at the end of the year.
Brad Hines is a building contractor in Los Angeles who spends a good eight hours a day in his 2008 Dodge Ram. He talked to us from his truck — hands-free, of course.
"I do everything in my truck. I drive from job site to job site. I take calls. I try to get on the computer and clean up daily reports. I answer emails on my phone. I use my truck as a mobile office," Hines says.
The idea of the mobile office is far from new — Willy Loman; the Avon Lady; plumbers; electricians. Now, technology is taking the idea of working from the road to a whole new level.
When Kerri Sparling was 7 years old, she was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. Her family didn't know anyone with the disease, so they sent her to diabetes camp — "where every single camper had Type 1 diabetes," she says.
"That was my first sense of not only other people who had diabetes, but a true community," says Sparling.
The director of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory said last week that preliminary data showed the possibility that the agency's Mars Science Laboratory – the six-wheeled rover that landed on Mars in August — had found signs of carbon-containing molecules.