N.Y.C. Officials Reassure Revelers Ahead of New Year’s Eve Festivities

Amid near-daily protests in the city, officials said there were “no specific credible threats” related to the annual ball drop in Times Square.

NYTimes New Year's Eve https://www.nytimes.com/2023/12/29/nyregion/new-years-eve-times-square-security.html Hurubie Meko

Original Source: NY Times >>

7 tips for using your phone less

Parenting is hard. Sometimes parenting is so challenging that, by comparison, your smartphone becomes an easy escape. And even if you’d like to use your phone less, it’s hard to make a plan amid the daily grind of parenting tasks and obligations. After all, who wouldn’t rather watch TikToks of the latest viral dance instead of listening to siblings bicker? The list of alternatives goes on and on. You could be checking sports scores, answering one last work email, shopping, finishing the grocery list, browsing itineraries for a solo vacation, texting a friend. At some point, though, your phone can become a crutch for coping with hard feelings and situations. Too much screen time can also feel alienating for both you and your child. If that’s the case, don’t feel guilty, because you’re not alone. More than half of parents say they’ve resolved to spend less time on their phone, according to C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital’s national poll of 2,044 parents of children 18 and younger. Parents reported often setting this goal at milestone moments, like the new year, birthdays, or the start of school.

4 tips for a successful digital ‘detox’

Dr. Jenny Radesky, a developmental behavioral pediatrician at the University of Michigan School of Medicine who conducts research on family screen time, says that parents really shouldn’t blame themselves if they turn to their phones frequently.”It is hard to disengage from our phones,” Radesky says, noting that the devices are effectively designed to compete for our attention.

Mashable https://mashable.com/article/how-to-use-your-phone-less

Original Source: Mashable >>

This NASA crew has survived Mars for six months — sort of

Halfway into a simulated Mars expedition, two men and two women living together in isolation have lost a crucial piece of equipment. “I may have accidentally murdered one of our robots,” said Dr. Nathan Jones, the medical officer for the crew, who described the incident as a “traumatic death.” Anca Selariu, the science officer, joked they would need Operation Phoenix to bring their rover back from the ashes. Ross Brockwell, the flight engineer, assured Jones they’d be able to fix it. “We’ve got plenty of duct tape,” Brockwell said.The conversation came amid a recorded update from NASA’s Crew Health and Performance Exploration Analog study, or CHAPEA. Four ordinary individuals volunteered to live in a 3D-printed Mars habitat for a year as a dress rehearsal for life on the Red Planet. Rather than reporting to Earth from 140 million miles away in space, though, the crew is actually much closer, in a 1,700 square-foot home at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. Outside the habitat, dubbed Mars Dune Alpha, is a domed facility designed to look like the surface of Mars, replete with red dirt and craggy vistas. They call this area where they conduct mock Marswalks the “sandbox.” As people around the world prepare to celebrate New Year’s Eve, the CHAPEA crew — Jones, Selariu, Brockwell, and Commander Kelly Haston — will also celebrate the halfway point in their 378-day isolation, which began on June 25, 2023. They’re the first of at least three groups that will participate in Mars-like isolation studies for human research.

Does space romance make NASA cringe? It’s complicated.

Mashable https://mashable.com/article/nasa-chapea-mars-crew

Original Source: Mashable >>

5 Things to Do This Weekend

A selection of entertainment highlights this weekend, including Randy Rainbow’s concert at the Beacon Theater in Manhattan.

NYTimes New Year's Eve https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2023/12/29/arts/weekend-editors-picks-randy-rainbow.html Danielle Dowling

Original Source: NY Times >>