Noelle Swan

Magazine writing

Cover story: Part I

 Homeless cover.jpgAn end to homelessness: Cities take on the impossible challenge

December 20, 2015

Boston – Targeting specific homeless groups, many urban areas are now focusing on eradicating rather than just managing one of America’s most intractable problems.

Cover Story: Part II

Minneapolis cover.jpg

Minneapolis’s innovative attempt to help homeless kids

December 21, 2015

Minneapolis – As part of a broader effort to stamp out homelessness, the city focuses on aiding young children and families to break the cycle of destitution.

Focus story

Tsarnaev focus top.jpg

Death penalty for Tsarnaev? Why Bostonians don’t favor that possibility.

January 2, 2015

Boston – Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is charged with one of the worst acts of domestic terrorism in US history, yet in the city where the bombings occurred, a unique mix of factors means that most residents don’t want to put him to death.

Focus story

Cobots focus

Meet Baxter, your new robotic co-worker

September 27, 2014

Southington, Conn.; and Cambridge, Mass. –Recent leaps in computer processing speeds and sensing capabilities have given rise to new possibilities for how robots can work in concert with people.


How robots have widened the world of one man unable to move

September 27, 2014

Providence, R.I. – Henry Evans relies on a telepresence robot and a remote-controlled quadrotor helicopter with an onboard camera to take him places he can’t go.

Cover story

Maker cover

The ‘maker movement’ creates D.I.Y. revolution

July 6, 2014

Detroit – The ‘maker movement’ is heralded as a new industrial revolution – combining the spirit of the old shop class with modern tech in community ‘Do It Yourself’ spaces.


How the ‘maker movement’ got a Kansas boy a new hand

Maker hand.jpg

July 6, 2014

$60 and a makerspace got a Kansas boy a new hand: Mom found the design for the hand on-line, and a teen friend scaled the design to fit  and went to the communal library makerspace to print it out on a 3-D printer.

Focus story

River focus.jpg

Toxic coal ash poses persistent threat to US waters

March 30, 2014 

Eden, N.C.; and Danville, Va. – A recent spill of coal ash in North Carolina underscores the challenge of disposing hazardous substances captured from power plant stacks. Are we diverting air pollutants into our waterways?


 Cleaning up US waterways: 5 success stories

March 30, 2014

More than 40 years after passage of the Clean Water Act, US waterways still face significant challenges. However, several cleanup success stories offer hope that remediation is possible.

Additional magazine clips

In Los Angeles, a national model for how to police the mentally ill

June 15, 2015 – By partnering beat cops with mental health clinicians, the Los Angeles Police Department has reduced incidences of force used on individuals with mental illness and has connected thousands of individuals with counseling and support.

The Web’s new viral star

March 4, 2014 – Millions of viewers are tuning in for science-related YouTube videos like one that gives a tour of the Large Hadron Super Collider and clips of little-seen giant sea creatures.

In a US first, New Orleans finds homes for all its homeless veterans

January 9, 2015 –More than 300 mayors have vowed to end veteran homelessness by the end of 2015. New Orleans celebrated the new year by becoming the first city to do so.

Safety-first culture drives record low coal-mine fatalities

December 31, 2014 – Intensified regulatory oversight and newly heightened emphasis on safety over production have helped make 2014 the safest year for coal mine workers on record.

Homelessness declines as new thinking fuels ‘giant untold success’

May 28, 2014 – Homelessness in America has declined 17 percent since 2005 as states reverse the old prevailing wisdom. Now, moving into a home can be the first step off the streets, not the last.

Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Search reveals extent of ocean garbage

April 1, 2014 – The search for Malaysia Flight 370 is complicated by the wide spread of ocean garbage, much of which looks just like plane crash debris in satellite images.

Ashley Stanley started Lovin’ Spoonfuls to match surplus food with hungry people

January 17, 2014 – Lovin’ Spoonfuls, a nonprofit food rescue group in Boston, strives to remove a glaring kink in the food chain and bridge the gap between waste and want.

Good reads column contributions

June 14, 2014: From immigrant families, to women in construction, to plight of puffins

May 10, 2014: From Google Ocean, to Detroit’s foodie takeover, to Amazon’s workers

April 5, 2014: From life-changing wells, to women who live as men, to acoustic wonders

March 1, 2014: From vanishing monarchs, to superveggies, to scientific knowledge

February 1, 2014: From future robots, to crowd-sourcing problems, to praise for kids

December 21, 2013: From Nelson Mandela, to Islamic feminists, to pliable robots

November 5, 2013: From investing in preschoolers, to moody America, to bogus peer review




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