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No task is too small, no craving too diminutive to outsource to a smartphone app. The world is literally at our fingertips.

And here's a new pitch.

In a rush? Don't have the time to swing by a gas station on your way home from work?

Copyright 2015 Fresh Air. To see more, visit



Copyright 2015 Fresh Air. To see more, visit



It starts with seemingly benign questions: Who are you voting for? Did you see that exposé about candidate X on Facebook? Before long, somebody is storming off to the basement or slamming the mashed potatoes on the table. And playing Adele's new song "Hello" won't make every family instantly get along (a la SNL's Thanksgiving Miracle).

Flip through a popular children's furniture catalog and you'll find baby cribs with bumpers — a padded piece of fabric that ties around the wooden slats, making the crib look cozy and cute. The problem, researchers say, is these bumpers can be deadly, because babies can get caught in the fabric and suffocate.

After meeting with his national security team, President Obama made a public statement that there is no specific, credible threat against the U.S. at this time, urging Americans to go about their Thanksgiving activities as usual.

Obama acknowledged that the deadly attacks in Paris on Nov. 13 struck a deep chord with many Americans.

"Given the shocking images, I know Americans have been asking each other whether it's safe here — whether it's safe to fly or gather," the president said, a fear he called understandable.

Part of the Australian coastline popular with swimmers and surfers will now be patrolled by drones as a way to protect beachgoers from shark attacks, government officials announced Wednesday.

The trials in the southeastern state of New South Wales are part of a AU $16 million ($11.6 million) program that will test the effectiveness of drone technology in mitigating shark attacks. The drones will send real-time images of coastal waters back to an operator using GPS coordinates.

A Pentagon investigation into a deadly U.S. airstrike on a Médecins Sans Frontières hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan, has found the attack was the result of human error, compounded by malfunctioning computers and communication failures.

Gen. John Campbell, the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, detailed the findings in a Pentagon briefing Wednesday. "This was a tragic but avoidable accident caused primarily by human error," he said.

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The bipartisan effort to overhaul the criminal justice system for drug offenders has hit a speed bump.

Some members of Congress are trying to tie those lighter punishments for drug defendants to a new bill that the Justice Department says would make it harder to prosecute a range of crimes from food safety to business fraud.

The plan, passed by voice vote by the House Judiciary Committee to little notice last week, would require prosecutors to prove guilt to a higher standard in many cases, by default.

There's a big divide in how Republicans and Democrats are talking about terrorism — and it's one unlikely to be solved anytime soon.

Consumers seeking health policies with the most freedom in choosing doctors and hospitals are finding far fewer of those plans on the insurance marketplaces. And the premiums are rising faster than for other types of coverage.

Four days after security levels were raised over a possible terrorist attack, the Belgian capital remains on high alert — but schools, businesses and subway stations are reopening to the public.

Police and soldiers were standing guard as life in Brussels returns to something like normal, reports NPR's Ofeibea Quist-Arcton:

Time was in America that stores routinely closed on Thanksgiving Day. People sent Thanksgiving greeting cards, people donned odd costumes and schools and communities staged elaborate parades and Thanksgiving pageants in which Native Americans and Pilgrims gathered together and smiled and waved.

One of two crew members survived the shooting down of a Russian warplane by Turkey on Tuesday, Russian officials say, and was rescued by a Syrian commando unit in an operation that ended early Wednesday.