Voices Ice forms on the shore of the East River due to unusually low temperatures caused by a polar vortex in New York

All 50 US states are below freezing as the polar vortex sworls around North America, shattering temperature records and causing a collective shudder across the continent.

Lisa Riley's Strictly Come Dancing dream ends in tears

Actress Lisa Riley broke down in tears after being voted off Strictly Come Dancing as the line-up of celebrities in this year's final was revealed.

Paul McGinley with Rory McIlroy at the Vivendi Trophy in 2009

McIlroy’s sweet on McGinley to lead the fight against Watson

World No 1 makes clear who his preference is for the next European Ryder Cup captain

Postcard from... Paris

Weightlessness is coming to Paris. This week it was announced that the sensation of zero-gravity can be purchased for a price of €5,980 (£4,852) a flight.

The Saturday Quiz: Answers

1. A 6-0, 6-0, 6-0 score

New York goes from a 'Summer of Blood' to a day with no violent crime as city records first day in memory where no one was shot or knifed

The rare occasion came as New York approached the end of a year when the city's murder rate is on target to hit its lowest point since 1960

The cast of the US Inbetweeners

American Inbetweeners axed after just one series

MTV has cancelled the show which was branded 'intolerably bland' by one critic

Downton Abbey gives way to the Gilded Age, just as The Office and Shameless gave way to remakes. Why are we Brits so snobby about them?

Stand down patriotic TV watchers; Julian Fellowes is going Stateside, but all is not lost.

Boyzone: Sir Simon Rattle conducts the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra

Where are all the female musicians?

Most top orchestras have many more men than women in their ranks. Miranda Kiek looks at what could be done to improve the mix.

Judy Chicago (with works by Tracey Emin, Helen Chadwick & Louise Bourgeois), Ben Uri: The London Jewish Museum of Art, London

“You are here to serve your masters.” This is a line from the S&M classic Story of O (1954), a tale about a career woman who succumbs to sexual slavery in a secluded château at the behest of her lover, René.

Traveller's guide: Jordan

The sights of this wild frontier will stay with you long after you've left

Wood, right, with Ed Koch, the mayor of New York; Koch credited the 'Post' with getting him elected

Roger Wood: Journalist who went to the United States and revived the 'New York Post'

Roger Wood was the debonair editor of the New York Post during the first decade of Rupert Murdoch's ownership. He had arrived in New York in 1975 just before Murdoch bought the Post for $30m in 1976. He was hired as executive editor in July 1977 and his Fleet Street background – he had been the youngest ever editor of the Daily Express, under Lord Beaverbrook – ensured a feisty portrayal of a city in decline, with debts mounting and crime rampant.

President Obama will have new confidence in his step

There was a palpable feeling that this election was pivotal. It was. Obama has renewed credibility

USA by rail

What is Amtrak?

From musical highs to the mountain heights

Head to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, says Chris Coplans

From town to the country

Sample the Empire State's diverse beauty, says Chris Coplans

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Where the spooks get their coffee fix: The busiest Starbucks in the US is also the most secretive

The secret CIA Starbucks

The coffee shop is deep inside the agency's forested Virginia compound
Revealed: How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Loch Ness Monster 'sighting'

How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Nessie 'sighting'

The Natural History Museum's chief scientist was dismissed for declaring he had found the monster
One million Britons using food banks, according to Trussell Trust

One million Britons using food banks

Huge surge in number of families dependent on emergency food aid
Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths 2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths trove
The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey, 25 years on

The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on

The space telescope was seen as a costly flop on its first release
Did Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

Did Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

A document seen by The Independent shows that a week after he resigned from the Lords he sold 350,000 shares in an American company - netting him $11.2m
Apple's ethnic emojis are being used to make racist comments on social media

Ethnic emojis used in racist comments

They were intended to promote harmony, but have achieved the opposite
Sir Kenneth Branagh interview: 'My bones are in the theatre'

Sir Kenneth Branagh: 'My bones are in the theatre'

The actor-turned-director’s new company will stage five plays from October – including works by Shakespeare and John Osborne
The sloth is now the face (and furry body) of three big advertising campaigns

The sloth is the face of three ad campaigns

Priya Elan discovers why slow and sleepy wins the race for brands in need of a new image
How to run a restaurant: As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food

How to run a restaurant

As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food
Record Store Day: Remembering an era when buying and selling discs were labours of love

Record Store Day: The vinyl countdown

For Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
Usher, Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert as part of the Global Poverty Project

Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert

The concert in Washington is part of the Global Citizen project, which aims to encourage young people to donate to charity
10 best tote bags

Accessorise with a stylish shopper this spring: 10 best tote bags

We find carriers with room for all your essentials (and a bit more)
Paul Scholes column: I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England

Paul Scholes column

I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England
Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

The heptathlete has gone from the toast of the nation to being a sleep-deprived mum - but she’s ready to compete again. She just doesn't know how well she'll do...