Neda Ulaby http://iowapublicradio.org en NSA Coverage Garners Pulitzers For Post And Guardian http://iowapublicradio.org/post/nsa-coverage-garners-pulitzers-post-and-guardian Winners of the 2014 Pulitzer Prizes were announced Monday. The Washington Post and The Guardian were among the notable winners, commended for together breaking the news of NSA surveillance programs. Mon, 14 Apr 2014 22:00:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 39124 at http://iowapublicradio.org Dance Music Legend Frankie Knuckles Dies At 59 http://iowapublicradio.org/post/dance-music-legend-frankie-knuckles-dies-59 <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hPrGnh7QUDo</p> Tue, 01 Apr 2014 20:01:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 38460 at http://iowapublicradio.org Dance Music Legend Frankie Knuckles Dies At 59 A Picket Line At The Oscars: Visual-Effects Artists To Protest http://iowapublicradio.org/post/picket-line-oscars-visual-effects-artists-protest Hundreds of visual-effects artists are planning to picket the Academy Awards on Sunday for the second year in a row. They're hoping to bring attention to what's been happening in their industry.<p>The field is losing jobs and relocating to countries with bigger subsidies for employers. It's the result of a technical revolution that's changed the profession since it kicked off in the 70s with Star Wars creator George Lucas' visual-effects company, Industrial Light and Magic.<p>At first, visual effects was mostly engineers creating special effects with cameras, high-speed motors and models. Sat, 01 Mar 2014 14:50:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 36954 at http://iowapublicradio.org A Baby Didn't Bump These Moms Out Of Competition http://iowapublicradio.org/post/baby-didnt-bump-these-moms-out-competition Let's be clear: Olympians handle the physical challenges of childbirth differently than most of the rest of us.<p>Aretha Thurmond is a discus thrower who'd already competed in two Olympics when she went to the hospital in labor.<p>"So I get there and they're like, 'Yeah, whatever, you're 4 centimeters dilated. Go walk around the hospital and come back,' " she says.<p>Thurmond's hospital was part of a university, so she headed straight for its track, where she power-walked for the next two hours. Fri, 24 Jan 2014 00:05:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 35250 at http://iowapublicradio.org A Baby Didn't Bump These Moms Out Of Competition Amiri Baraka's Legacy Both Controversial And Achingly Beautiful http://iowapublicradio.org/post/amiri-barakas-legacy-both-offensive-and-achingly-beautiful One of America's most important — and controversial — literary figures, Amiri Baraka, died on Thursday from complications after surgery following a long illness, according to his oldest son. Baraka was 79.<p>Baraka co-founded the Black Arts Movement of the 1960s. His literary legacy is as complicated as the times he lived through, from his childhood — where he recalled not being allowed to enter a segregated library — to the 2001 attack on the World Trade Center. Thu, 09 Jan 2014 22:44:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 34659 at http://iowapublicradio.org Amiri Baraka's Legacy Both Controversial And Achingly Beautiful A YouTube Powerhouse Looks Beyond Its Gamer Base http://iowapublicradio.org/post/youtube-powerhouse-looks-beyond-its-gamer-base One of the most popular channels on YouTube is aimed toward people who play video games. It's got tons of content — thousands of game reviews, how-to videos of people gaming away enthusiastically, even little homemade movies that people have made using video-game software.<p>That last format is a user-generated phenomenon called machinima — "little m" machinima. "Big M" Machinima is a company, and it wants to be a new media empire. Mon, 23 Dec 2013 21:18:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 33945 at http://iowapublicradio.org A YouTube Powerhouse Looks Beyond Its Gamer Base Hollywood's New Strategy: Supporting Chinese-Made Blockbusters http://iowapublicradio.org/post/hollywoods-new-strategy-supporting-chinese-made-blockbusters <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UqZb1bUKJQ0</p> Mon, 25 Nov 2013 07:55:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 32594 at http://iowapublicradio.org Hollywood's New Strategy: Supporting Chinese-Made Blockbusters Most Remaining Blockbusters To Close In January http://iowapublicradio.org/post/most-remaining-blockbuster-video-stores-close-january Blockbuster is going to shut all of its company-owned stores. Some franchise stores will stay open. At its peak, the video rental chain had about 9,000 stores. Thu, 07 Nov 2013 09:34:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 31756 at http://iowapublicradio.org Lou Reed, Beloved Contrarian, Dies http://iowapublicradio.org/post/lou-reed-beloved-contrarian-dies <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ffr0opfm6I4</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0KaWSOlASWc</p> Sun, 27 Oct 2013 19:47:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 31205 at http://iowapublicradio.org Lou Reed, Beloved Contrarian, Dies New Cable Channels Try To Lure Millennials Back To TV http://iowapublicradio.org/post/new-cable-channels-try-lure-millennials-back-tv Transcript <p>STEVE INSKEEP, HOST: <p>OK, three brand-new cable channels all share the same problem. How do you persuade 20-somethings to look up from their phones long enough to gaze at an old-fashioned, regular TV? Mon, 21 Oct 2013 09:03:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 30866 at http://iowapublicradio.org 'Trophy Wife' Is More Than Just A Pretty Face On ABC http://iowapublicradio.org/post/trophy-wife-more-just-pretty-face-abc One of the strongest new sitcoms on TV this season has the worst name, but its title, <em>Trophy Wife</em>, was intended to be ironic. The show's creators, Sarah Haskins and Emily Halpern, are self-professed feminists who wanted to take on a type generally scorned in popular culture.<p>The show's eponymous character, Kate, is a reformed party girl trying to find her place in a family that includes a much older husband, Pete, his two ex-wives and three kids. When Kate inadvertently breaks Pete's nose, the situation is expertly handled by ex No. Tue, 24 Sep 2013 23:05:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 29589 at http://iowapublicradio.org 'Trophy Wife' Is More Than Just A Pretty Face On ABC Awaiting The Apocalypse In The Quiet Town Of Concord http://iowapublicradio.org/post/awaiting-apocalypse-quiet-town-concord No place seems safe these days from someone's terrifying, post-apocalyptic imaginings. Los Angeles is wrecked in the movie <em><em>Elysium, </em></em>the South is zombie-ridden in TV's <em><em>The Walking Dead, </em></em>and now— thanks to writer Ben Winters — even the quiet streets of Concord are at risk of annihilation.<p>But it's hard to imagine anywhere <em>less</em> apocalyptic than the Corner View Restaurant in Concord, N.H. Thu, 22 Aug 2013 06:58:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 27859 at http://iowapublicradio.org Awaiting The Apocalypse In The Quiet Town Of Concord For You To Borrow, Some Libraries Have To Go Begging http://iowapublicradio.org/post/you-borrow-some-libraries-have-go-begging More than 90 percent of Americans say public libraries are important to their communities, according to the Pew Research Center. But the way that love translates into actual financial support varies hugely from state to state.<p>Vermont, for instance, brags that it has more libraries per capita than any other U.S. state. Some of them are remarkably quaint. In Ludlow, one library is a white clapboard Victorian, slightly frayed, ringed by lilies and sitting by the side of a brook.<p>"It's very small," says Julia Baldwin, a volunteer with the local Ladies' Aid society. Mon, 19 Aug 2013 07:07:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 27661 at http://iowapublicradio.org For You To Borrow, Some Libraries Have To Go Begging Songs Of Africa: Beautiful Music With A Violent History http://iowapublicradio.org/post/songs-africa-beautiful-music-violent-history <em>For the next year, NPR will take a musical journey across America, which is one of the most religiously diverse countries on earth. We want to discover and celebrate the many ways in which people make spiritual music — individually and collectively, inside and outside houses of worship.</em><p>The founder of the choral group Sounds of Africa is Fred Onovwerosuoke. He was born in Ghana and brought up in Nigeria, and his choir in the heart of the U.S. — St. Sat, 03 Aug 2013 06:03:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 26854 at http://iowapublicradio.org Songs Of Africa: Beautiful Music With A Violent History Girls' Legos Are A Hit, But Why Do Girls Need Special Legos? http://iowapublicradio.org/post/girls-legos-are-hit-why-do-girls-need-special-legos Two years ago, in 2011, <em>90 percent</em> of Lego's consumers were boys. A tough statistic to swallow for those of us who grew up playing with Lego's gender-neutral buckets of bricks. But the statistic came straight from Lego, which was then focused on boys with franchised sets based on properties like <em>Star Wars</em> and <em>The Avengers</em> after weathering a disastrous period in the 1990s that left the company on the brink of collapse.<p>"Construction had never worked for girls, for whatever reason," says Garrick Johnson, a toy analyst for BMO Capitol Markets. Sat, 29 Jun 2013 21:50:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 23234 at http://iowapublicradio.org Girls' Legos Are A Hit, But Why Do Girls Need Special Legos? 'Dome' Luck: On CBS, A Drama About Getting Stuck With Each Other http://iowapublicradio.org/post/dome-luck-cbs-drama-about-getting-stuck-each-other One of the most anticipated shows of the summer, <em>Under the Dome,</em> starts Monday on CBS. It's about a tiny New England town that's suddenly and mysteriously sealed off by an impenetrable dome.<p>The series is the first on-screen collaboration between two of the biggest Steves in popular culture — Steven Spielberg and Stephen King.<p>"The Steven Squared, we call it," cracks Neal Baer, an executive producer of the show.<p>In the TV show, as in the King novel it's based on, that forbidding dome crashes down out of nowhere. Thu, 20 Jun 2013 21:31:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 22793 at http://iowapublicradio.org 'Dome' Luck: On CBS, A Drama About Getting Stuck With Each Other From Classic Toys To New Twists, Kids Go Back To Blocks http://iowapublicradio.org/post/classic-toys-new-twists-kids-go-back-blocks I visited Toy Fair in New York City hunting for ideas for our summer series about kids' culture. One of the big takeaways was the increasing popularity of construction games such as Legos. Sales shot up nearly 20 percent last year. Now, it seems, every major toy manufacturer is scrambling to add new games geared toward kids building things.<p>Concurrently, I happened to visit the National Building Museum, where an impressive exhibition, PLAY WORK BUILD, showcases the museum's vast collection of block sets and building toys. Wed, 19 Jun 2013 19:15:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 22724 at http://iowapublicradio.org From Classic Toys To New Twists, Kids Go Back To Blocks A Lannister Always Pays His Debts — But Do Too Many Of His Fans Watch For Free? http://iowapublicradio.org/post/lannister-always-pays-his-debts-do-too-many-his-fans-watch-free For today's <em>All Things Considered </em>story about people sharing their Netflix or Hulu Plus passwords, producer Sami Yenigun latched on to what could've been an ordinary entertainment-business story and front-loaded it with snippets of sound from <em>Game of Thrones</em> — attacking dragons, evil kings, treacherous harlots. Fri, 07 Jun 2013 20:12:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 22096 at http://iowapublicradio.org A Lannister Always Pays His Debts — But Do Too Many Of His Fans Watch For Free? Foster Families Take Center Stage http://iowapublicradio.org/post/foster-families-take-center-stage <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mlTGYq-sTwI</p> Mon, 03 Jun 2013 20:14:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 21821 at http://iowapublicradio.org Foster Families Take Center Stage 'Arrested Development' Leads The Charge For Old Brands In New Media http://iowapublicradio.org/post/arrested-development-leads-charge-old-brands-new-media <em>Arrested Development</em> returning via Netflix? Just another old-media brand reviving itself on new media.<p>The TV show, which originally ran on Fox from 2003 to 2006 and unveils new episodes on Netflix next weekend, finds itself in splendid company. Radiohead, Louis C.K., <em>Veronica Mars</em> — all found their audiences with promotion and distribution from big studios and networks. Radiohead was signed to a major music label. Louis C.K. enjoyed HBO specials and TV shows. Tue, 21 May 2013 20:41:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 21142 at http://iowapublicradio.org 'Arrested Development' Leads The Charge For Old Brands In New Media As Audiences Shift To Cable, TV Programming Changes, Too http://iowapublicradio.org/post/audiences-shift-cable-tv-programming-changes-too <em>Mad Men</em> comes back for its sixth season Sunday at an opportune moment for basic cable. Last weekend, 25 million viewers combined watched <em>The Bible</em> and <em>The Walking Dead</em> on basic cable channels. That's more than triple the audience for <em>The Good Wife</em> on CBS that same night.<p>So are we looking at a convergence between scripted shows on broadcast and cable? It's hard not to wonder, when you see broadcast networks rushing to replicate gruesome death scenes like the ones relished by <em>The Walking Dead</em>'s enviably sizable audience. Fri, 05 Apr 2013 07:18:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 18748 at http://iowapublicradio.org As Audiences Shift To Cable, TV Programming Changes, Too Why Are TV Remotes So Terrible? http://iowapublicradio.org/post/why-are-tv-remotes-so-terrible Let's call it the baby sitter's dilemma.<p>If you go to someone's house and pick up the TV remote, chances are, you won't know how it works. You know the situation's bad when even a tech writer who also majored in physics at an Ivy League school is confused by her own TV remote.<p>"It's unbearable to me," moans Ars Technica writer Casey Johnston, of her remote's many <a href="http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2013/02/smart-tvs-have-a-serious-communication-problem/">cryptic buttons</a>. "Sub.code? Comp/mix? Tue, 26 Mar 2013 07:23:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 18245 at http://iowapublicradio.org Why Are TV Remotes So Terrible? 2013 Pritzker Winner Toyo Ito Finds Inspiration In Air, Wind And Water http://iowapublicradio.org/post/2013-pritzker-winner-toyo-ito-finds-inspiration-air-wind-and-water Toyo Ito, a 71-year-old architect based in Japan, is the winner of the 2013 Pritzker Architecture Prize. The jury honored Ito for his more than four-decade career, in which he has created architecture that "projects an air of optimism, lightness and joy ... infused with both a sense of uniqueness and universality."<p>On the phone from his offices in Tokyo — the most densely populated city in the world — Ito says "air and wind and water," are the forces that drive him aesthetically. Sun, 17 Mar 2013 19:19:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 17794 at http://iowapublicradio.org 2013 Pritzker Winner Toyo Ito Finds Inspiration In Air, Wind And Water From Louisiana To Versailles, Funding 'Vital Stories, Artfully Told' http://iowapublicradio.org/post/louisiana-versailles-funding-vital-stories-artfully-told The movie <em>Beasts of the Southern Wild</em> is a fairy tale of a film. It might not seem to have much in common with documentaries about evangelical Christians in Uganda or the billionaire Koch brothers. But these films were all funded by a not-for-profit group called Cinereach. It was started by a couple of film school graduates who are still in their 20s. Wed, 20 Feb 2013 10:34:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 15667 at http://iowapublicradio.org From Louisiana To Versailles, Funding 'Vital Stories, Artfully Told' Toy Fair: Markers That Don't Blot Walls, Sand Without The Mess http://iowapublicradio.org/post/toy-fair-markers-dont-blot-walls-sand-without-mess <em>Toy Fair 2013 in New York started Sunday and runs until Wednesday. NPR's Neda Ulaby had the tough assignment of sizing up the acres of fun offerings. She brings us this report:</em><p>The venerable industry convention <a href="http://www2.toyassociation.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=tf_Home">Toy Fair celebrates its 110<sup>th</sup> anniversary</a> this week. But it might as well be the 1970s or '80s within the great glassy expanse of New York City's Javits Center.<p>Vast acres of displays baldly appeal to the nostalgia of today's 30-to 40-something parents. Mon, 11 Feb 2013 19:00:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 14850 at http://iowapublicradio.org Toy Fair: Markers That Don't Blot Walls, Sand Without The Mess Reg Presley, The Voice Of 'Wild Thing,' Dies http://iowapublicradio.org/post/reg-presley-voice-wild-thing-dies <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z9DVJE_bhVU</p> Tue, 05 Feb 2013 21:38:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 14546 at http://iowapublicradio.org Reg Presley, The Voice Of 'Wild Thing,' Dies Competition, High Bills Hurt Cable Companies http://iowapublicradio.org/post/competition-high-bills-hurt-cable-companies Transcript <p>STEVE INSKEEP, HOST: <p>OK. In the next few days, cable companies announce how they did financially in 2012. Most industry watchers expect some negative trends to continue. More people are canceling their cable subscriptions. They are called cord cutters, because they are getting TV from the Internet and over the air, not their cable cords. But they're not the only problem the cable industry needs to worry about. NPR's Neda Ulaby reports.<p>NEDA ULABY, BYLINE: Meet Comcast's worst nightmare.<p>JOE GOULD: Hi. Wed, 30 Jan 2013 10:24:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 14223 at http://iowapublicradio.org In A Fragmented Cultureverse, Can Pop References Still Pop? http://iowapublicradio.org/post/fragmented-cultureverse-can-pop-references-still-pop On a recent episode of <em>Saturday Night Live</em> when the comedian Louis C.K. played host, one skit parodied his eponymous show on F/X. It riffed on the theme song and the discursive style of his comedy.<p>But here's the thing: Fewer than 2 million people watch <em>Louie</em>. About 7 million watch <em>Saturday Night Live</em>. That means even optimistically, at least two-thirds of the audience is missing the joke.<p>Decades ago, <em>Saturday Night Live</em> skewered topics most people in the country knew about: Mister Rogers, <em>Dirty Dancing</em>, who shot J.R.? Fri, 18 Jan 2013 08:40:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 13658 at http://iowapublicradio.org In A Fragmented Cultureverse, Can Pop References Still Pop? 'Adventure Hour' Is A New Take On Old-Time Radio http://iowapublicradio.org/post/adventure-hour-new-take-old-time-radio The creators of <em>The Thrilling Adventure Hour</em> proudly call it "fake radio." It's less an homage to old-time radio and more of a clever update. A live monthly performance at Largo, a 200-seat, scruffy-chic Hollywood nightclub is also available as a popular podcast through Nerdist.<p>One of <a href="http://thrillingadventurehour.com/index.html">the show</a>'s episodic heroes is a kind of mashup of Buck Rogers and the Lone Ranger, called Sparks Nevada, Marshal of Mars. Thu, 10 Jan 2013 22:52:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 13355 at http://iowapublicradio.org 'Adventure Hour' Is A New Take On Old-Time Radio Who's Gay On TV? Dads, Journalists, Investigators And Footmen http://iowapublicradio.org/post/whos-gay-tv-dads-journalists-investigators-and-footmen The pop culture gay flavor of the minute? White gay dads.<p>"We're having a baby, Bri!" croons one of the leads on NBC's <em>The New Normal</em>. "This is our family. You, me and that kid forever."<p>It's a mini-boomlet, says real-life white gay dad and sociology professor Joshua Gamson. Wed, 02 Jan 2013 15:35:00 +0000 Neda Ulaby 12782 at http://iowapublicradio.org Who's Gay On TV? Dads, Journalists, Investigators And Footmen