For those who have everything
April 4, 2012

If you've long wondered why cars aren't more espresso-friendly, this is the gadget for you. The Handpresso Auto (around $200) is a portable, hand-held espresso maker that plugs into the cigarette lighter on your dashboard. Add a dash of water, and Hand-presto! You can have a steaming cup of the strong stuff while swerving in and out of traffic. Caveat: This product is only available in France, but may be coming to the U.S. soon. Source: BusinessWeek The Week Staff

This just in
3:05 p.m. ET
Win McNamee/Getty Images

Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.) introduced a bill Tuesday that would require states to report all police shootings to the Department of Justice.

In a statement to announce the legislation, the senators cited reporting from The Washington Post published Sunday, which found that 2015 has seen at least 385 police killings nationwide so far.

"Too many members of the public and police officers are being killed, and we don't have reliable statistics to track these tragic incidents," Boxer said in a statement. "This bill will ensure that we know the full extent of the problem so we can save lives on all sides."

The Post notes that the new bill would differ from the Death in Custody Reporting Act, which Congress approved last year, because it would require reporting non-fatal shootings, in addition to fatal ones, to the DOJ. The new legislation would require reporting details about the shooting victims including age, gender, race, and whether or not the victims were armed. Meghan DeMaria

survey says
2:02 p.m. ET
Drew Angerer/Getty Images

A new poll from The New York Times and CBS News found that both Republicans and Democrats don't approve of the ways political campaigns are funded.

Forty-six percent of respondents said the U.S. should "completely rebuild" how campaigns are financed. Another 39 percent agreed that the campaign finance system needs "fundamental changes."

Among Republicans, 80 percent of the poll respondents said money has too much influence on U.S. politics, and 76 percent of Republicans supported requiring outside spending organizations to disclose their donors. Meanwhile, 90 percent of Democratic respondents believed money had too much influence, and 76 percent of Democrats supported more disclosure about political donors. Across the political spectrum, many respondents expressed support for new measures that would restrict the wealthy's influence, such as limiting spending by super PACs.

The 1,022 adults polled weren't optimistic that things would change anytime soon, though. Fifty-eight percent of respondents were "pessimistic" that the U.S. will change the way campaigns are financed. Meghan DeMaria

Discoveries!
1:44 p.m. ET

It was under our very noses! Researchers at the University of Virginia School of Medicine have discovered what's being called the missing link between the brain and the immune system: vessels of the lymphatic system that escaped notice by "hiding" among major blood cells traveling through sinuses. The full study was published in this month's issue of Nature.

It's being called a "stunning discovery" because up until now, no one had completely understood how the brain connects to the immune system. The answer, Gizmag aptly says, is "just like every other tissue in the body."

For the layperson, its effect on our understanding of the human body is best summed up by this image:

Explains Neuroscience News:

That such vessels could have escaped detection when the lymphatic system has been so thoroughly mapped throughout the body is surprising on its own, but the true significance of the discovery lies in the effects it could have on the study and treatment of neurological diseases ranging from autism to Alzheimer's disease to multiple sclerosis. [Neuroscience News]

As the chairman of the UVA Department of Neuroscience told Neuroscience News, "They'll have to change the textbooks." Nico Lauricella

This just in
1:05 p.m. ET
Mark Wilson/Getty Images

The Senate on Tuesday voted 83-14 to advance the USA Freedom Act, a bill that would revise the U.S. government's surveillance powers. The cloture vote came after key provisions of the USA Patriot Act temporarily expired at midnight on Sunday.

The USA Freedom Act has already passed in the House, and it would end the National Security Agency's bulk data collection from phone calls. Under the new bill, phone data would stay private, but the government could search records under court orders.

The Senate's final passage of the bill is expected later Tuesday, and it could be signed into law as early as Tuesday evening. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), however, wants to propose amendments to the House-passed bill, which would delay its passage. McConnell's proposed amendments would "give further assurances" that the government could still search private phone data when necessary. Meghan DeMaria

Coming Soon
12:52 p.m. ET

What if the asteroid that smashed into the earth and killed the dinosaurs had missed? That's the intriguing, parallel-universe question behind The Good Dinosaur, a Pixar movie slated for release later this year — and a new teaser elegantly lays out the basic premise while showing off some impressive animation:

The Good Dinosaur has had an unusually bumpy path to the box office. The film was originally slated for release in 2014, before creative problems led to the replacement of the original director and producer. The film seems to be back on track — but we won't get to see how much the original concept has evolved until The Good Dinosaur hits theaters in November. Scott Meslow

This just in
12:50 p.m. ET
Alessandro Della Bella/Getty Images

FIFA President Sepp Blatter on Tuesday announced that he would step down from his post following the election of a new leader at an "extraordinary congress" of the organization. He said the congress is to be convened "as rapidly as possible."

The announcement, made at a press conference in Zurich, was a surprise, coming just days after Blatter won re-election to a fifth term amidst allegations that top FIFA officials had engaged in a massive, decades-long bribery ring.

FIFA official Domenico Scala said the extraordinary congress to select Blatter's successor could be held as early as December. He said profound structural reforms, including of the executive committee that is stuffed with Blatter's allies, would also be on the table.

Just yesterday, The New York Times reported that Blatter's top lieutenant was involved in a $10 million transfer to one of the FIFA officials accused of taking kickbacks, suggesting there was evidence that Blatter's inner circle was involved in the bribery ring as well. Ryu Spaeth

men of a certain age
11:20 a.m. ET

In real life, most of us would raise an eyebrow at the nearly triple-decade age difference between a couple whose ages were 25 and 53. But in last year's Magic in the Moonlight, this actual age difference between Emma Stone and love interest Colin Firth was hardly taboo.

In Hollywood, it's basically standard practice to pair young female stars with much older love interests (sometimes, the men are even old enough to be their fathers). Vulture looked deeper at this trend by creating graphs that compare the ages of three young actresses (Emma Stone, now 26; Jennifer Lawrence, now 25; and Scarlett Johansson, now 30) with that of their male love interests. Here's Stone's graph:

(Vulture)

In case that graph doesn't make a strong enough point about the rampant ageism and sexism in Hollywood, consider this: 37-year-old Maggie Gyllenhaal has said she was denied a role in a movie because she was considered her "too old" to play the love interest of a 55-year-old man. Samantha Rollins

See More Speed Reads