Thursday, February 22
Facial Recognition in Airports: Biometrics Technology Is Expanding
Technology

Facial Recognition in Airports: Biometrics Technology Is Expanding

On a recent Thursday morning in Queens, travelers streamed through the exterior doors of La Guardia Airport’s Terminal C. Some were bleary-eyed — most hefted briefcases — as they checked bags and made their way to the security screening lines.It was business as usual, until some approached a line that was almost empty. One by one, they walked to a kiosk with an iPad affixed to it and had their photos taken, as a security officer stood by. Within seconds, each passenger’s image was matched to a photo from a government database, and the traveler was ushered past security into the deeper maze of the airport. No physical ID or boarding pass required.Some travelers, despite previously opting into the program, still proffered identification, only for the officer to wave it away. This passenger s...
Nature Has Value. Could We Literally Invest in It?
Business

Nature Has Value. Could We Literally Invest in It?

Picture this: You own a few hundred acres near a growing town that your family has been farming for generations. Turning a profit has gotten harder, and none of your children want to take it over. You don’t want to sell the land; you love the open space, the flora and fauna it hosts. But offers from developers who would turn it into subdivisions or strip malls seem increasingly tempting.One day, a land broker mentions an idea. How about granting a long-term lease to a company that values your property for the same reasons you do: long walks through tall grass, the calls of migrating birds, the way it keeps the air and water clean.It sounds like a scam. Or charity. In fact, it’s an approach backed by hardheaded investors who think nature has an intrinsic value that can provide them with a r...
Residents Oppose Expanding Drug Use Sites to Suburban Vancouver
World

Residents Oppose Expanding Drug Use Sites to Suburban Vancouver

British Columbia’s rampant drug deaths have more than once thrust public health officials into uncharted territory. It became the first province to decriminalize small quantities of hard drugs for personal use in 2022, about two decades after Vancouver opened the first supervised injection site in North America. But as overdoses increase in some British Columbia towns, there is disagreement in one city about how to address it.In Richmond, one of British Columbia’s largest cities, with 230,000 people, municipal council chambers turned raucous this week as a full public gallery of residents opposed a plan for staff to study whether a safe consumption site for drug users would be viable in the community. The plan was adopted on Tuesday, but the effort is off to a rocky start, with few officia...
Old and Young, Talking Again
Health

Old and Young, Talking Again

On Fridays at 10 a.m., Richard Bement and Zach Ahmed sign on to their weekly video chat. The program that brought them together provides online discussion prompts and suggests arts-related activities, but the two largely ignore all that.“We just started talking about things that were important to us,” said Mr. Ahmed, 19, a pre-med student at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.Since the pair met more than a year ago, conversation topics have included: Pink Floyd, in a long exploration led by Mr. Bement, 76, a retired sales manager in Milford Township, Ohio; their religious faiths (the senior conversation partner is Episcopalian; the younger is Muslim); their families; changing gender norms; and poetry, including Mr. Ahmed’s own efforts.“There’s this fallacy that these two generations can’t co...
Kylian Mbappe is leaving PSG: Thank god that’s finally over
Sports

Kylian Mbappe is leaving PSG: Thank god that’s finally over

Ice ages haven’t lasted as long as this.Kylian Mbappe to Real Madrid… it has been a thing for about a decade at least.The Athletic was not even in existence when the pair began courting each other. Twitter was still fun (and called Twitter), Taylor Swift hadn’t heard of American football and the closest thing we got to a global pandemic was from watching Contagion.It has been an inexorably long saga, the very worst kind of transfer saga in fact, with endless posturing, incessant lies and spin and thousands upon thousands of stories claiming that it is finally happening.Well now, once and for all, it surely is. Mbappe will leave PSG and you’d have to assume that next season, he will play in the Bernabeu (assuming another club doesn’t have the opportunity to pip them and he ends up at, say, ...
OpenAI Completes Deal That Values the Company at $80 Billion
Technology

OpenAI Completes Deal That Values the Company at $80 Billion

OpenAI has completed a deal that values the San Francisco artificial intelligence company at $80 billion or more, nearly tripling its valuation in less than 10 months, according to three people with knowledge of the deal.The company would sell existing shares in a so-called tender offer led by the venture firm Thrive Capital, the people said. The deal lets employees cash out their shares in the company, rather than a traditional funding round that would raise money for business operations.OpenAI, which declined to comment, is now one of the world’s most valuable tech start-ups, behind ByteDance and SpaceX, according to figures from the data tracker CB Insights.The deal is another example of the Silicon Valley deal-making machine pumping money into a handful of companies that specialize in ...
Biden Faces More Pressure From Environmentalists to Block Steel Merger
Business

Biden Faces More Pressure From Environmentalists to Block Steel Merger

In interviews, environmental activists working to reduce greenhouse gas emissions say the merger would bring together two steel giants that are laggards on transitioning away from fossil fuels.Researchers at Industrious Labs, a nonprofit pushing to decarbonize steel and other heavy industries, drew on both companies’ public disclosures to calculate that Nippon and U.S. Steel are relatively high emitters of heat-trapping gases from steel production. Both companies rely heavily on coal-powered blast furnaces and are on a slower path to transition to cleaner fuels than some international competitors. Three U.S. Steel facilities — in Pennsylvania, Indiana and Illinois — combine to emit more greenhouse gases in a year than a comparable number of coal-fired power plants, the researchers estimate...
Biden Says ‘Putin Is Responsible’ After Report of Navalny’s Death: Live Updates
World

Biden Says ‘Putin Is Responsible’ After Report of Navalny’s Death: Live Updates

This was not the speech she expected to give, at least not on this day. Yulia Navalnaya had come to a gathering of world leaders in Munich to press them to remember her imprisoned husband and her troubled country.And then just as the conference opened on Friday morning came word from Russian state media that her husband, the crusading, defiant dissident Aleksei A. Navalny, was dead in one of President Vladimir V. Putin’s prisons.By her own admission, her first thought was to fly away, to join her grown children to mourn in private a man who had already survived a horrific poisoning and years behind bars. But before she did, she decided she had to speak out. Because he would have wanted her to.Ms. Navalnaya stunned the presidents, prime ministers, diplomats and generals at the Munich Securi...
More Young People Are on Multiple Psychiatric Drugs, Study Finds
Health

More Young People Are on Multiple Psychiatric Drugs, Study Finds

The NewsGrowing numbers of children and adolescents are being prescribed multiple psychiatric drugs to take simultaneously, according to a new study in the state of Maryland. The phenomenon is increasing despite warnings that psychotropic drug combinations in young people have not been tested for safety or studied for their impact on the developing brain.The study, published Friday in JAMA Open Network, looked at the prescribing patterns among patients 17 or younger enrolled in Medicaid in Maryland from 2015 to 2020. In this group, there was a 9.5 percent increase in the prevalence of “polypharmacy,” which the study defined as taking three or more different classes of psychiatric medications, including antidepressants, mood-stabilizing anticonvulsants, sedatives and drugs for A.D.H.D. and ...
How Maple Leafs staff helped save a rec-leaguer from a skate cut to the throat: ‘I thought I was going to die’
Sports

How Maple Leafs staff helped save a rec-leaguer from a skate cut to the throat: ‘I thought I was going to die’

It was inside the Toronto Maple Leafs dressing room that Ike Werner first allowed himself to believe he was going to survive.After having his throat cut accidentally by a skate blade during a Sunday afternoon rec league game at the NHL team’s practice facility earlier this month, a terrifying experience turned surreal when the 37-year-old looked over and saw Maple Leafs forward Nick Robertson receiving treatment in an adjacent room.“That was my visual,” Werner told The Athletic. “Him being worked on.”Werner had taken note of the luxury cars behind the gated section of the parking lot when he pulled into Ford Performance Centre that afternoon. The Zamboni was resurfacing the ice earlier than usual, too, so he figured the Leafs had skated on Rink 2 before his “Prestige Worldwide” team faced ...