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Nation / World

‘The Cosmopolitans’ Leads the Pack of New Amazon Offerings

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Here comes the third round of Amazon pilots, even before we’ve seen the fruits of the second. The first gave the world Garry Trudeau’s (neologism alert) Republicom Alpha House, whose second season began filming in July. Jill Soloway’s Transparent, one of four green-lighted pilots from the last batch, arrives as a series to stream via Amazon.com in late September. It’s useful to remember that pilots are only pilots. They are …

Syria Fears: Extremists Return Home

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Washington — The case of Mehdi Nemmouche haunts U.S. intelligence officials. Nemmouche is a Frenchman who authorities say spent 11 months fighting with the Islamic State group in Syria before returning to Europe to act out his rage. On May 24, prosecutors say, he methodically shot four people at the Jewish Museum in …

Obama Says Immigration Needs Time

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Washington — President Obama is suggesting that he will defer his self-imposed deadline for announcing an expected change in immigration policy, as the White House wrestles with the political and legal dilemmas involved in making significant alterations without congressional approval. Fed up with congressional gridlock, the president has said he’ll use his executive power to make changes. One proposal under discussion would delay …

New Systems Can Track Cellphones

Monday, August 25, 2014

Washington — Makers of surveillance systems are offering governments across the world the ability to track the movements of almost anybody who carries a cellphone, whether they are blocks away or on another continent. The technology works by exploiting an essential fact of all cellular networks: They must …

A Match Made in a Different Galaxy

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Las Vegas — Theirs is a marriage made, if not in heaven exactly, then at least in intergalactic space. Mark Restucci popped the question last October, dropping to one knee in the style of his hero, Captain James …

Social Security Q&A: Providing Your Social Security Number Is Voluntary

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Question: Do I have to give my Social Security number whenever I’m asked? Answer: No. Giving your Social Security number is voluntary. If it is requested, you should ask why the person needs your Social Security number, how it will be used, what law requires you to give …

Shelby Lyman on Chess: Exhilarating and Fun

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Hint and Explanation: A Pin is Key Chess is a microcosm of life. The centrality of the decision-making process has resulted in the game being described as “the gymnasium of the mind” by observers as disparate as Blaise …

Farming on a Smaller Scale

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Ithaca, n.y. — A physicist from Armenia, a juice-maker from Bermuda and a Burmese sushi chef are crafting new careers in agriculture under a program that applies the business incubator model to farming. The Groundswell Center for Local …

Hermit Crabs Prove A Low-Maintenance Pet

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Ocean City, n.j. — You wouldn’t know it by the petite tank in tow, but the Merchlinsky family emerged from George’s Beach Shop on the boardwalk in this Shore town on a recent sunny day with three new …

Restaurants Try Pay-in-Advance Tickets

Sunday, August 24, 2014

San Francisco — With restaurant patrons increasingly jumping on the Internet to make reservations, some high-end eateries here and across the country are adding a new tech wrinkle: having their clientele pay for their meal in advance using an online ticketing system similar to what’s used for sporting …

Web Retailers Turn to Brick-and-Mortar Stores

Sunday, August 24, 2014

When online jewelry shop BaubleBar opened a brick-and-mortar outpost in Manhattan, the retailer quickly realized just how different its in-store shoppers are from its Web customers. Shoppers suddenly paid more attention to un-flashy pieces often overlooked online. More women bought multiple necklaces that could be worn together. And …

Satellite TV Vies For Political Cash With Custom Ads

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Satellite TV giants DirecTV and Dish Network are looking for a landslide this fall — in political dollars. For the first time, satellite broadcasters will be jockeying with other media outlets for a share of political spending that could top $3 billion this year. They’ve historically been shut …

Only the Rich Feel Wage Gains

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Washington — Call it the no-raises recovery: Five years of economic expansion have done almost nothing to boost paychecks for typical American workers while the rich have gotten richer. Meager improvements since 2009 have barely kept up with a similarly tepid pace of inflation, raising the real value …