Technology

RMV offices going dark Thursday night

RMV offices going dark Thursday night

In-person visit to RMV needed to obtain new license

WAIT TIMES at the Registry of Motor Vehicles are likely to go up starting next week as the state installs a new software system and begins complying with new requirements for obtaining a federally approved driver’s license. The new requirements require Massachusetts residents seeking a federally approved license to appear in person with a US(...)

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Severe storm effects are the new norm

Severe storm effects are the new norm

Rising sea levels and urban flooding will wreak havoc without immediate fixes

ONLY TWO MONTHS after surging tides and high winds flooded MBTA stations, knocked out power and sent three feet of water into the streets of Boston, it’s all happening again. The governor and the mayor call press conferences to lay out preparations, urge caution and call up the National Guard. Schools close. Businesses get out(...)

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DOT notes: Big rail projects and small bridges

DOT notes: Big rail projects and small bridges

Officials also making efforts to coordinate projects to minimize disruptions

SOUTH COAST RAIL project officials said phasing in the new line by running it through Middleboro not only gets the service operating years ahead of time, it gives the line a head start on the full build-out without adding to the projected $3.2 billion cost. In a presentation Monday to a joint meeting of the(...)

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Rosenberg suggests House to blame for Airbnb inaction

Rosenberg suggests House to blame for Airbnb inaction

Senator says ‘it’s not rocket science’ to craft regulations

SEN. STAN ROSENBERG chastised his fellow lawmakers on Thursday for dithering for years while the short-term rental industry embedded itself in the market and grew unencumbered by regulations and the lodging tax “It’s not going away, technology is not going away,” said Rosenberg, who was part of a CommonWealth magazine Newsmakers panel discussing how Beacon Hill(...)

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The Airbnb gold rush is on

The Airbnb gold rush is on

Whole buildings, like this one in Chinatown, are being converted into hotels

Photographs by Ken Richardson AIRBNB, LIKE THE draw of ride-hailing apps to car owners, started with the premise that your home can make you a little extra money by renting out rooms to travelers looking to save a few dollars. Empty-nesters, they said, could rent out junior’s bedroom now that he’s moved out and put(...)

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How now cow power?

How now cow power?

Cows providing fuel for electricity

IN A RURAL valley south of Deerfield, power lines strung on new poles run along a stretch of muddy gravel between the main road and the interior of Bar-Way Farm, where hundreds of cows provide electricity along with their milk. Manure from the cows is pumped into a massive, red, airtight tank that acts like(...)

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Watching the games people play

Watching the games people play

State keeps real-time track of every slot machine

SECRETED ON THE 12th floor of 101 Federal Street in Boston’s Financial District is a windowless command center, manned 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Keycard entry is so restricted and the information so sensitive that even top level managers don’t have access. Four big-screen monitors are mounted on the wall with information(...)

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Cities and states must take lead on climate change

Cities and states must take lead on climate change

Policies can yield substantial health dividends

CLIMATE CHANGE CREATES risks that scientists have been warning about for decades. Fortunately, many actions that reduce the greenhouse gas emissions that drive climate change and hedge against longer-term risks can also benefit public health right now. Reductions in greenhouse gas emissions often go hand in hand with reductions in air pollutants with well-established relationships(...)

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The high toll of inmate phone calls

The high toll of inmate phone calls

Advocates say charges keep prisoners isolated, undermine criminal justice reforms

IT’S EASY TO take ordinary conveniences like making a telephone call for granted. Advances in technology have made communication cheaper and higher quality than ever before. But one group has been excluded from enjoying the benefits of the falling cost of this modern amenity: inmates. For years, inmates and their families across the nation have(...)

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