Elise Hu

With the election fast approaching, the country is at an inflection point.

"And the question is where do we turn," says civil rights attorney and professor John A. Powell. "Do we turn on each other or do we turn towards each other?"

A week into California's stay-at-home order, when our now-familiar mix of anxious, lonely and restless feelings were still brand new, I craved connection. But not the kind available from a screen. Inside my wallet I found 10 stamps leftover from the holidays, and I put out a tweet: "Today I am going to write letters to send through the post ... [Direct message] me your snail mail address if you want a random letter. But heads up I only have 10 stamps & they are of Santa."

It feels political these days, just to exist. That's especially true if you're a black, transgender, queer teenager on a scholarship at an elite Brooklyn high school for the arts — and in competition for one slot at Brown University. As if adolescence wasn't tricky enough already!

Halfway through her debut essay collection, Minor Feelings, author and artist Cathy Park Hong makes clear her mission: "I have some scores to settle ... with this country, with how we have been scripted."

The "we" here are Asian Americans and how we're seen in this country in a time when the us-versus-them dynamic can feel overpowering. In Minor Feelings, the author asks us to reconsider the effects of racism against Asian Americans and how it persists.

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We're ever-more reliant on our devices, whether it's mobile phones or voice-powered home assistants, such as Amazon Echo.

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An experiment funded by the U.S. military meant to sharpen soldiers' minds for the battlefield has found a way to improve memory: by zapping subjects' brains with tiny bursts of electricity during sleep.

This story was updated on Oct. 3, 2019 to include the Morning Edition audio.

Scientists are better understanding why we age — and they're also better explaining the cellular changes that lead our bodies and brains to decline.

This research has led people like David Sinclair, a geneticist at Harvard Medical School, and Peter Attia, a longevity doctor and oncologist, to challenge the conventional wisdom that aging is inevitable.

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In the latest episode of Future You, check out an armband that lets you control tech devices with your mind. This is not a brain implant or even a headset. It's an armband that reads neuron activity to let you move objects in digital space. Then it goes further, giving you mental control of physical robots too. Think "the Force" from Star Wars.

It's almost summer, and if time and resources allow, a time to get away.

NPR is putting together a how-to guide — in podcast form — for navigating the social dynamics of travel. How do you get enough downtime on a trip, if you're an introvert? How do you deal with group dynamics when traveling? We will use your stories for a new NPR Life Kit podcast.

So tell us, what have you learned to do to make travel meaningful, despite different personality types? Or tell us about a time the group dynamics didn't work out.

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Communicating through your thoughts alone is possible — with a little technical assistance.

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Thoughts can control machines in more and more intricate ways.

In Episode 2 of Future You with Elise Hu, we explore mind-controlled robot suits and how they could end some disabilities as we know them or let able-bodied people gain super strength.

Tuca & Bertie is an adult animation that centers on a brassy, colorful toucan (voiced by Tiffany Haddish) and her neurotic best frien

Evacuee Roxanne Peters had planned to prepare food tomorrow, for Thanksgiving dinner.

"I was celebrating at two different houses. We were invited to two different places, and I was cooking, you know, potluck," she said.

Both those homes burned to the ground in the historic Camp Fire. The scale of the fire's destruction is so spread out that very little of the towns of Paradise, Magalia and Concow remain. So far, the fire scorched 230 square miles — an area the size of Chicago.

"I'll be giving thanks this year that we made it out alive," Peters says.

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