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.

Traveller's guide: Alaska

The sights of this wild frontier will stay with you long after you've left, writes Sara Benson

The News Matrix: Thursday 1 November 2012

Psychics fail their spiritual screen test

Steward, right, with Lennox Lewis, who he guided to the world heavyweight championship in 1997

Manny Steward: The best boxing trainer of his generation

Manny Steward became the best trainer of his generation after an anonymous apprenticeship travelling to fights with young boxers packed in his car, a cooking stove in the trunk and the local US state rulebook in his pocket. He was a master tactician who understood the crazy hearts of the fighters he shaped, guided and often created from scratch. He had an ability in the gym, a hotel room in the lonely hours before a fight, the dressing room and the ring during a fight to communicate clearly a strategy for victory. He could whisper and he could growl.

Obama sends fresh shockwaves through election race with 'bullshitter' attack on Romney

President Barack Obama has taken his rhetorical attacks on Mitt Romney, his Republican challenger, to a new level, calling him a “bullshitter” in a still-to-be-published interview with Rolling Stone magazine.

'Armchair astronomers' discover planet with four suns

A planet with four suns has been identified by two “armchair astronomers”.

Tina Fey as Sarah Palin and Amy Poehler as Hillary Clinton on Saturday Night Live

Bye bye Ricky Gervais: Controversial Golden Globes host to be replaced by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler

He was once feted by everyone from Ben Stiller to Johnny Depp. They praised his mockumentary sit-com The Office as the last-word in comedy cool, but now it seems Ricky Gervais' particular brand of smart arsery is out of favour in Hollywood.

My US paradox: why are the shops so nice but the politics so nasty?

It's the American way to look good in politics by putting other candidates down.

Dammit, Wyclef: Corruption at hip-hop star's Haiti charity

Charitable efforts to help Haiti back on its feet after a devastating earthquake in 2010 have attracted scepticism before. But today's New York Times report on staggering waste at the hip-hop star Wyclef Jean's charity, Yéle, will be enough to make many think twice before reaching into their pocket again.

Today's wacky stories from the web: gangster guns, cryogenics and Amityville horror house for sale

A wikipedia for hip hop, Italy's most tyre-rannical politician, frost-bitten penis, snake bite vs. morphine and the brand new Taj Mahal

Revealed: What happens if you cross a parrot, a vampire bat and a porcupine? You get a weird dinosaur

A newly described dinosaur resembled a weird combination of parrot, vampire bat and porcupine.

Rory McIlroy walks to the first tee after arriving late

Ryder Cup: Rory McIlroy reunited with policeman who rushed him to Medina's first tee

Ryder Cup hero Rory McIlroy has been reunited with the policeman who rushed him to the course for the final day's play at Medinah Country Club.

Davis Love III wells up with the emotions of leading the US team at the Ryder Cup

Ryder Cup: Tournament still has edge despite mutual respect says USA captain Davis Love

For two years of build-up and two days of preview press conferences, the overwhelming theme of this week's Ryder Cup has seemed to be fun and mutual respect.

Jose Maria Olazabal and Seve Ballesteros at Valderrama in 1997

James Lawton: US need to extinguish the spirit Seve instilled in Olly

It was inevitable – but not necessarily right – that the American high command should target Rory McIlroy here over these next few days.

Daylight robbery? Capone's car sells for a fortune

Al Capone's bulletproof car fetched $215,000 at auction – eight times the price of a regular one of its kind.

Their first kiss has been given a schmaltzy memorial

A kiss is still a kiss... unless it's from Barack Obama

Mwah! The First Lady's first kiss with the man who would be President has been given a schmaltzy memorial.

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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003