Mark Stencel is managing editor for digital news. He is responsible for overseeing the journalism on NPR's website and other platforms and gizmos.

Since Stencel joined NPR in 2009, the network has been recognized as one of industry's leading digital news services, honored with the 2011 Eppy award for best journalism website from Editor & Publisher, a 2010 National Press Foundation award for excellence in online journalism, two Edward R. Murrow Awards, a Peabody award, and the 2011 Webby and People's Voice awards for news from the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences.

The Two-Way
11:02 pm
Sun August 5, 2012

Mars Rover Pulls Off High-Wire Landing

An artist's rendering shows a rocket-powered descent stage lowering the one-ton Curiosity rover to the Mars surface.
NASA/JPL-Caltech

Originally published on Mon August 6, 2012 5:26 am

The best place to stand in the entire solar system at 1:14 a.m. ET Monday was about 150 million miles away, at the bottom of Gale Crater near the equator of the Red Planet.

Looking west around mid-afternoon local time, a Martian bystander would have seen a rocket-powered alien spacecraft approach and then hover about 60 feet over the rock-strewn plain between the crater walls and the towering slopes of nearby Mount Sharp.

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The Record
9:12 pm
Sun August 5, 2012

Chavela Vargas, Legendary Ranchera Singer, Dies

Chavela Vargas performing in Buenos Aires in 2004.
STR/AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 6:23 pm

A legend of Latin American song has died. Chavela Vargas was a cultural icon across the Spanish-speaking world, with a voice that redefined notions of beauty and an attitude that brashly bent gender roles. Vargas died Sunday; she was 93.

She was born Isabel Vargas Lizano in Costa Rica, but audiences knew her as Chavela, a hard-partying, rabble-rousing, fiery singer who adopted Mexico as her homeland and began singing on the streets in her early teens.

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Space
4:55 pm
Sun August 5, 2012

Life On Mars? Try One Of Saturn's Moons Instead

Originally published on Sun August 5, 2012 5:46 pm

One of the things the Mars rover will look for is organic molecules that could at least indicate whether there was once life on the Red Planet. But if searching for life in outer space is the goal, many scientists now say we might have better luck elsewhere — specifically one of Saturn's moons, Enceladus.

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Election 2012
4:17 pm
Sun August 5, 2012

Could 2012 Be The Year Of The Asian Voter?

Mitt Romney and Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell were featured on the front page of a Chinese-language newspaper following a visit to the Northern Virginia's Asian-American community in June. Such engagements with the Asian community helped McDonnell win his current office.
Courtesy of Peter Su

Originally published on Sun October 14, 2012 4:33 pm

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Space
3:30 pm
Sun August 5, 2012

Waiting For A Sign: Mars Rover To Land On Its Own

An artist's concept of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft depicts the final minute before the rover, Curiosity, touches down on the surface of Mars.
NASA/JPL-Caltech

Originally published on Sun August 5, 2012 10:49 pm

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The Torch
3:04 pm
Sun August 5, 2012

Usain Bolt Will Defend His Title As 'World's Fastest Man'

Jamaica's Usain Bolt celebrates after winning the men's 100m final at the London Games on Sunday.
Christophe Simon AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon August 6, 2012 10:31 am

Usain Bolt is still the "world's fastest man."

The Jamaican sprinter has won the men's 100-meter race in an Olympic record time of 9.63 seconds. Just after 4:50 p.m. ET, he successfully defended the gold medal he won four years ago in Beijing.

Jamaica's Yohan Blake came in second today, giving him the silver medal. American Justin Gatlin was third, meaning he gets the bronze.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:30 pm
Sun August 5, 2012

Headbanging Bruckner And Debussy In Black And White: New Classical Albums

The young pianist Inon Barnatan plays Debussy and Ravel with striking assurance.
Avie Records

Originally published on Tue August 7, 2012 4:14 pm

Some people are intimidated by the vastness of classical music. And while the prospect of more than 1,000 years of hits to consider may be daunting, just think instead of how many musical journeys of discovery can be made.

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Movies I've Seen A Million Times
1:14 pm
Sun August 5, 2012

The Movie Jay Chandrasekhar's 'Seen A Million Times'

Harry Shearer (left), Christopher Guest (center) and Michael McKean play the British band Spinal Tap, created for Rob Reiner's 1984 mock rockumentary This Is Spinal Tap.
MGM Home Entertainment AP

Originally published on Sun August 5, 2012 5:46 pm

The weekends on All Things Considered series Movies I've Seen A Million Times features filmmakers, actors, writers and directors talking about the movies that they never get tired of watching.

For writer-director Jay Chandrasekhar, whose credits include Super Troopers, Beerfest and The Babymakers, which opened in theaters this weekend, the movie he could watch a million times is Rob Reiner's This Is Spinal Tap. "The accents are flawless, the music is really good," Chandrasekhar says.

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Author Interviews
12:53 pm
Sun August 5, 2012

A Story Of Ancient Power In 'The Rise of Rome'

Originally published on Mon August 6, 2012 3:11 pm

Over the past decade, there's been a revival in popular histories of ancient Rome; not the academic tomes once reserved for specialists and students, but books and movies designed for the rest of us.

Anthony Everitt has written three biographies about some of the major players in ancient Rome: Cicero, Augustus and Hadrian, all full of intrigue and treachery.

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