There are about 140 million square miles of open ocean, and according to New York Times reporter Ian Urbina, much of it is essentially lawless. As Mark Young, a retired United States Coast Guard commander and former chief of enforcement for the Pacific Ocean, told Urbina, the maritime realm is "like the Wild West. Weak rules, few sheriffs, lots of outlaws."

Many high-schoolers hoping to attend George Washington University, one of the top private universities in the country, breathed a sigh of relief this week.

GWU announced it will no longer require applicants to take the SAT or ACT.

The move comes after the school formed a task force to study the pros and cons of going test-optional. GWU attracts lots of high-achieving students who do well on both exams, but the task force concluded that the school's reliance on these tests was excluding some high-achieving students who simply don't test well.

"Starting a military AI arms race is a bad idea," says a group of researchers and concerned citizens who are urging a ban on offensive military weapons that don't rely on human control. The group signed an open letter that's being delivered at a conference on artificial intelligence this week.

A teenager locking down a summer job as a lifeguard used to be a big deal.

But this summer, several parks and recreation departments and YMCA's across the country are reporting a shortage of lifeguards. And an improving economy may be playing a big role.

The Ridge Road swimming pool in Raleigh, N.C. is packed. There are easily 200 people here competing in a swim meet, some of them as young as 5 years old.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Jonathan Pollard, who has served almost 30 years in prison after being convicted of espionage, will be granted parole on Nov. 21, according to his attorneys.

The former civilian Navy analyst was arrested in 1985 and charged with passing classified information to Israel. He pleaded guilty and received a life sentence.

"But under laws in place at the time, that meant he could get parole after 30 years," NPR's Carrie Johnson says. "Now, that term is nearly up — and the Justice Department did not stand in the way of his release."

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

It took a while for Dana Bowerman's long prison sentence to sink in.

Bowerman is a onetime honor student and cheerleader whose brassy personality cleared most obstacles from her path. But there was one hurdle her quick mind couldn't leap. In early 2001, Bowerman got sent away for nearly 20 years on federal drug conspiracy charges, her first and only offense. It wasn't until two years in, in her bunk behind a fence in a Texas prison, that her fate seemed real.

"It was a hard swallow," Bowerman said.

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