2:08pm

Tue July 31, 2012
The Torch

Phelps Sets New Olympic Record With 19 Medals; America's Schmitt Wins Gold

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 3:35 pm

U.S. swimmers Conor Dwyer (left), Michael Phelps, Ryan Lochte, Ricky Berens poses on the podium with their gold medals after winning the men's 4x200m freestyle relay final at the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Fabrice Coffrini AFP/Getty Images

The U.S. men's swimming team has won the 4x200m freestyle relay, in a race that also gave Michael Phelps a record 19 medals in the Olympics. He netted his 18th, a silver, earlier in the day.

Update at 4:05 p.m. EDT: For the relay final, the American team swam in the fourth lane, next to their greatest rivals, the French, who posted the fasted qualifying time. The French are led by Yannick Agnel, who soundly defeated Ryan Lochte and others in the men's 200m freestyle Monday.

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2:06pm

Tue July 31, 2012
Asia

India's Power Woes A Classic Story Of Supply, Demand

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 11:25 am

Muslim girls study by candlelight Monday inside a madrasa, or religious school, in Noida, on the outskirts of New Delhi. Three regional power grids collapsed, causing a massive power outage that blacked out more than half of India.
Parivartan Sharma Reuters /Landov

It might be too early to say what the exact cause of India's latest massive power outage is, but in its simplest form, it probably has something to do with supply and demand –- not enough of the former and too much of the latter.

The outage, which left more than 670 million of the country's 1.2 billion people without power, snarled traffic, shut down electric trains and idled some businesses. Indian officials say they are rapidly restoring power, but it's unclear how soon the situation will be back to normal.

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1:58pm

Tue July 31, 2012
Election 2012

On Iran, Romney's Plan Resembles Obama's Reality

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 8:40 pm

Mitt Romney speaks in Jerusalem on Sunday, backing "any and all measures" to keep Iran from developing nuclear weapons.
Uriel Sinai Getty Images

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney says America's national security priority should be preventing Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, and he was talking tough about this in his recent stop in Jerusalem.

"History teaches with force and clarity that when the world's most despotic regimes secure the world's most destructive weapons, peace often gives way to oppression, to violence, or to devastating war," Romney said. "We must not delude ourselves into thinking that containment is an option."

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1:58pm

Tue July 31, 2012
The Torch

With A Tiger's Help, Orange Juice Helps Lighten The Mood At Olympics

On their bottles, Innocent declares itself the juice of champions — before adding, "rather than bang on about it, we thought we'd show you a picture of a tiger running through his pre-swim checklist." The drinks are a welcome sight at the Olympic media center.
Vickie Walton-James NPR

When you spend hours on end at a media center, even if it's on an assignment as terrific as the Summer Olympics, the refreshments can get to be, well, familiar.

But no contempt has been bred here. That's partly because of Innocent brand juice — the "official smoothie and juice of the London 2012 Olympic games," as the label says.

And any drink that can make us chuckle on deadline is greatly appreciated. Especially if it's what's on the outside of the bottle that makes us laugh.

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12:59pm

Tue July 31, 2012
The Salt

Bhutan Bets Organic Agriculture Is The Road To Happiness

Originally published on Mon October 22, 2012 8:32 am

A Bhutanese farmer puts her harvest of chilies on the roof of a shed to dry and protect it from wild boars, deer, and monkeys in 2006.
James L. Stanfield National Geographic/Getty Images

The tiny Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan drew international attention a few years back for saying gross national happiness should trump gross domestic product when measuring a nation's progress. If you're going to prioritize happiness, the Bhutanese thinking goes, you'd better include the environment and spiritual and mental well-being in your calculations.

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12:55pm

Tue July 31, 2012
The Two-Way

Microsoft Gives Hotmail A Facelift, Says It Will Transition It To Outlook

Originally published on Wed August 1, 2012 5:00 am

The new Outlook is incorporated with other services like Skype.
Microsoft

Microsoft announced that Hotmail — the email service with 324 million users — will transition into a web and more social version of Microsoft's Outlook.

Reuters reports that Microsoft made the announcement, as they showed off their free web version of the email program it is renowned for.

Reuters adds:

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12:54pm

Tue July 31, 2012
Arts & Culture

Preserving neighborhood character by design

The first time I went to Pacific Heights, I expected to be surrounded by mansions, flower gardens, and expensive boutiques. Those weren't difficult to find, but while sitting in Lafayette Park during my first visit, I was surprised to see eight story apartment buildings nestled in between gold trimmed Victorian houses. That's when I began to investigate what was behind that juxtaposition – and what it meant in a neighborhood with a history of fighting up-zoning to preserve its dignified nature.

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12:10pm

Tue July 31, 2012
The Two-Way

Deal Struck To Avoid Possibility Of Government Shutdown In October

"Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., announced on Tuesday an agreement to avoid a government shutdown shortly before the November election," The Hill writes. "He said he, Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, and President Obama have all agreed to the deal."

Boehner confirmed the news in an email his staff just sent to reporters:

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10:58am

Tue July 31, 2012
The Torch

U.S. Women's Gymnastics Team Wins Gold Medal; First In 16 Years

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 3:35 pm

Young Skywalker: Gabby Douglas helped solidify the U.S. women's team grip on gymnastics gold. The Americans beat Russia and Romania.
Ronald Martinez Getty Images

The U.S. women's gymnastics team has won the team gold medal at the London 2012 Olympics, handily beating Russia, which took silver, and Romania, which took bronze. China finished fourth.

Update at 2:25 p.m. EDT: The U.S. women led off with their strength — the vault. The apparatus gives them an advantage, and not only because Maroney is the world champion and gold-medal favorite in the event.

The AP describes why:

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