Amy Dickinson describes the incident that makes her think of the sound of shovels penetrating hard dirt as part of our series Summer Sounds. Her dad once forced Amy, her sisters and a cousin to dig in the hot summer sun in the fruitless pursuit of saving a crop.
Robert Siegel talks with Declan McCullagh, chief political correspondent for CNET, about a federal case in which Ramona Fricosu, a Colorado woman, is refusing to disclose a laptop password to authorities — arguing it would violate her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination. Fricosu is facing several charges related to a mortgage scam. The encrypted laptop was seized from her bedroom during a police raid. McCullagh tells us more about the case — and what legal implications it may have.
The Kinect has been a big success for Microsoft's Xbox. It's a motion sensor that lets you play video games by moving your body — no controller of any kind necessary. Computer engineers and hobbyists have hacked it to do all sorts of amazing things: They're using the motion sensor to browse the Web without touching anything, navigate Google Earth with slight bodily movements, and even aid with physical rehabilitation. Perhaps soon, these innovations will let you wave a finger and bring up the Internet on your kitchen wall.
A potential default on U.S. treasury bonds isn't as unprecedented as politicians would have you think. In 1979, the U.S. failed to make timely payments to its bondholders — and the results weren't pretty. Robert Siegel speaks with Ball State University finance professor Terry Zivney, who co-authored a journal article called "The Day the United States Defaulted on Treasury Bills," about the results of that last default.