A Better Screen Routine Could Change Your Sleep, and Your Health
Oct23

A Better Screen Routine Could Change Your Sleep, and Your Health

Recently, NPR published an article reporting the effect of screen exposure on sleep quality and duration in teenagers. According to a study by sleep researchers from the University of Michigan, one in six parents surveyed said that their teenage child had trouble falling asleep or staying asleep for three nights or more during a week. Of these parents, more than half say that electronics are to blame for their teens’ sleep troubles, while 43% pointed to long and irregular school and activity schedules. While the busy nature of high school and the restlessness of teens might seem normal, another recent report from MinnPost shows why lack of sleep, even amongst the young, should be cause for concern. MinnPost writes that according to a new study published by Scientific Reports, sleeplessness and sleep irregularity raise risks of developing serious chronic illnesses, like heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and depression. While the recent study focused on older Americans, sleeplessness and irregular sleep is clearly bad for a person’s health at any age. Eighty-two percent of Americans find that getting one extra hour of sleep per night is somewhat or extremely valuable. However, as screen technology increasingly becomes significant in our work and home lives, getting a good night’s rest could become even more difficult. By following these tips from NPR and SleepDr.com, both adults and teens can care for their short-term rest to promote long-term health: Establish a Routine Sleep researchers recommend turning off the lights at the same time every night, and waking up at the same time every morning, even on weekends. Prepping for bed by brushing teeth, reading, and changing in the same order and at the same time each day can also mentally and physically help the body settle for the night. Limit Caffeine For teens especially, caffeine can wreak havoc on a sleep schedule. Avoid caffeine before the afternoon, and consider cutting it completely. Get Tech Out of the Bedroom Avoiding televisions, phones, and laptops in the bedroom reduces the amount of light the eyes and brain process before bed, signaling sleep hormones. Getting rid of tech can also help a person avoid distractions and worries about the next day. Thinking about emails, bank accounts, and the news before sleep is not a good way to improve rest. If you absolutely must have phones or computers where you sleep, look into blue-light blocking filters, which warm the color of the light from your screen to help reduce headaches and promote sleep. Getting enough sleep is essential for parents, teens, and everyone in between. By practicing good habits, you can get the rest you need to succeed...

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Kia and Hyundai Are Under ‘Fire’ By Auto Safety Group For Consistent Vehicle Fires

Kia and Hyundai are in the hot seat with the Center for Auto Safety. This nonprofit safety group has demanded the two automotive manufacturers issue a worldwide recall after nearly a decade of reported vehicle fires have been ignored. Since 2010, there have been over 220 complaints regarding vehicle fires and more than 200 reports of smoke, melted wires, and strange odors. The issue affects both cars and SUVs. Cars that have experienced vehicle fires include the 2011 through 2014 models of Kia Sorento and Optima, the 2011 through 2014 Hyundai Sonata and Santa Fe, and the Kia Soul models from 2010 through 2015. Should a recall be issued, around 2.9 million cars and SUVs would be taken off the road. In 2017, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) began their investigation of the two manufacturers along with claims over engine failures. However, the Center for Auto Safety filed a petition against this back in June. The nonprofit requested the vehicle fires be a separate case from the engine failures. For now, there’s no word on whether or not their petition was approved. While over 75% of cars currently on the road are in need of maintenance or repair, this differs from the usual wear and tear of a car. The significant number of car fires as a manufacturing error put otherwise safe drivers at risk. This becomes an even worse issue should the car harbor particularly young or old individuals. In fact, elderly drivers are more than twice as likely to experience a medical problem that causes difficulty in travel. “The volume of fires here make it appear that Hyundai and Kia are content to sit back and allow consumers and insurers to bear the brunt of poorly designed, manufactured and repaired vehicles,” claims Jason Levine, executive director for the Center for Auto Safety. The real trouble lies in Kia’s and Hyundai’s disregard for customer complaints. Among the more than 200 complaints, over 100 of those have been filed between June and October of this year. “Based on the data collected to date, and these manufacturers’ inability, or unwillingness, to determine the cause of these fires on behalf of the hundreds of Kia and Hyundai customers who own cars which have burst into flames, the center believes the additional remedy which is warranted is a full recall,” Levine continues in his statement. Should car manufacturers continue to shirk customer safety, drivers may opt for other modes of travel. In fact, the limo and town car industry makes $6 billion in annual revenue. So far, the two car companies have begun internal investigations to determine the cause for...

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NYC Condo Market: 33,000 New Units On Their Way to Manhattan
Oct22

NYC Condo Market: 33,000 New Units On Their Way to Manhattan

As of 2017, there were more than 111 million renters that lived inside apartments across the United States. In one of the most popular cities in the entire world, apartments are great, but condos are the living space of choice, though not for the frugal spender. The average sales price in Manhattan was $1.9 million for condos in existing buildings during 2017. Believe it or not, $1.9 million isn’t even that bad of a price when it comes to NYC condo living. Two NYC condos have hit the market for much more than the $1.9 million average. Unfortunately, Anthony Bourdain is no longer with us, but his Manhattan condo was just placed on the market for $3.7 million. According to the New York Daily News, the Upper East Side condo, at 40 E. 94th St., was purchased by the late celebrity chef and travel show star along with his wife Ottavia Busia in 2014. When the two purchased the condo, city property records show that they spent $3.35 million. “The open gourmet kitchen is equipped with top-of-the-line appliances,” reads the luxury listing on Stribling and Associates’ website. Some of the amenities feature a “6 burner, double-oven Wolf range, Subzero refrigerator and freezer, Miele dishwasher and microwave, custom cabinets, porcelain floors, and granite countertops. NBA icon Jason Kidd recently placed his Manhattan condo for sale, as well. According to Variety, Kidd, a 10-time NBA All-Star point guard and two-time Olympic gold medal winner, is selling his 2,755-square-foot, 4-bedroom, and 4.5 bathroom condo for the low, low price of only $4.7 million, which is actually $600,000 under its $5.35 asking price. Kidd is being represented throughout the sale by Douglas Elliman’s Andrew Azoulay and the buyers by Alexander Boriskin and Michael Lorber, both also with Douglas Elliman. In other Manhattan condo news, a new 5-year plan will include 33,000 new condos and rental buildings in the area. Bloomberg adds that 33,000 new units for sale or rent are expected to be constructed in Manhattan within the next five years, with the largest concentrations in the northern and southern parts of the iconic borough. This new development could cause some issues, though. Despite the expensive price for some of NYC’s luxurious condos, there is actually a surplus of high-end condos and apartments due to a post-recession building boom. “It’s really the top questions we get from our developer clients, after ‘How much can we sell this for?’ and ‘How fast can we sell it?'” said Joshua Silverbush, director of market insights for Marketing Directors, an NYC-based brokerage. “What else is coming up, and what are we competing against?” An estimated 1,643 new rentals are expected to reach Manhattan by the end of...

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Drunk Birds Cause Stir In Minnesota Town

It’s important to take breaks from the news of the human world and step into the animal kingdom. Most news about animals doesn’t leave us quite as disappointed in humanity, so it can be a pleasant respite. We take breaks after work and head to happy hour, so what’s to keep birds from doing the same thing? Nitrogen, which makes up 79% of the air that birds so freely fly through, also plays a vital role in something these birds weren’t expecting: fermentation. While drunk driving remains a problem that is in the top three causes of car accidents in the United States, the sober human residents of Gilbert, Minnesota were alarmed by some unusual avian behavior. They were alarmed enough to call the police to report birds acting erratically, falling, flying into things, and generally not fluttering as gracefully as we’re used to seeing. As it turns out, the birds were likely a little drunk. From an early frost, the berries that local birds love to enjoy had started fermenting early. Thus, when they snacked on beaks full of boozy berries, just like human beings, they weren’t quite as coordinated as usual. Humans are cognizant of the effects of alcohol, so one can only imagine what was going through their little bird brains when a bunch of berries got them tipsy. “Every now and then, some birds overdo it. They cannot coordinate their flight movements properly or at all, and they are unable to walk in a coordinated way,” said Meghan Larivee told National Geographic. While most people would hardly be able to notice and point out that the birds were indeed intoxicated, they caused enough of a stir that people were phoning the police. What the police would be able to do about them was unclear and they ended up informing residents that the birds would sober up on their own. This isn’t an isolated event and has been the object of study across North America and Europe. It’s leading researchers to ask questions about climate change, namely how seasonal weather events might affect more than just the boozing bird populations. While the question raises important concerns, these birds are usually victims of alcoholic happenstance. There have been some more eerily tragic instances of people finding groups of birds dead in the yards. Rather than it being an extraterrestrial or paranormal event, hungry birds ate too many fermented berries and died from alcohol poisoning. Younger birds are more susceptible to the perils of alcohol and less deft at avoiding the berries in questions, whereas adults may have learned over time which berries to eat and which to...

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Banksy Painting Shredded Seconds After Selling For $1.4 Million

Art is an essential part of human expression and experience. From cave paintings dating back hundreds of thousands of years to modern street art, it all plays an important role how human beings see and synthesize the world around them. One mysterious and highly famed modern artist shook up the art world last week while his painting was on auction. One study puts 48% of homeowners planning to decorate their homes in 2018, but this unnamed European art collector was bidding for an original Banksy painting. At Sotheby’s in London, Banksy’s world-famous piece “Girl With Balloon” was being auctioned. A piece that’s been recreated innumerable times, it hung framed on the wall at Sotheby’s where it would soon play a juicy prank on the art world. After the counterculture fashion of Banksy’s art, when the final bid had been placed for $1.4 million, the painting shredded itself. As soon as the gavel dropped and declared the new recipient of the painting as victorious, it fell through a shredder that was built into the frame, partially destroying it. The crowd didn’t know what to do and video shows people confused and astonished at what was unfolding in front of them. A far cry from the 40 million used cars that change hands every year between private and corporate sellers, Sotheby’s just watched a buyer’s $1.4 million piece of art history literally shredded before their eyes. A prank that will go on to make the piece priceless. Then the speculation began. Banksy’s reputation as both artist and mischievous prankster had people wondering if Sotheby’s was in on the prank. They denied any prior knowledge. Later, on Banksy’s own Instagram, he posted a video showing him making the frame with the concealed shredder. “A few years ago I secretly built a shredder into a painting. In case it was ever put up for auction,” he writes in the video. Apart from suspicions, the woman who won the auction began working with Sotheby’s to discuss next steps. Originally aghast at her investment being destroyed the moment she bought it, she realized that moments like that make art. “When the hammer came down last week and the work was shredded, I was at first shocked, but gradually I began to realize that I would end up with my own piece of art history,” she said. The painting has been renamed “Love is in the Bin” and is being called the first artwork in history to have been created during a live auction by the head of contemporary art for Europe at Sotheby’s. Another prank, another immortalized moment in the world of modern...

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Is Artificial Intelligence The Future Of The Transportation Industry?

With technology changing daily life, well, daily, and social media reaching and influencing millions of people around the world, it only makes sense that the two should come together. However, we didn’t quite see it emerging in the trucking industry: Tyrannosaurus Marketing, a firm that does promotion work for the trucking industry, has recently realized the impact social media platforms (such as Facebook and Twitter) have on procuring leads. “Experience with this industry has shown that many managers and senior executives are incredibly active on social, even if they may not make it clear that they’re there,” said Jennifer Greene, founder of Tyrannosaurus Marketing. “[Entry-level and other employees] are often very visible, even down to the truckers driving shipments cross-country having active Twitter accounts.” Her goal, along with that of others in the industry, is to “use social media and other mediums to tell their story in a compelling way do a better job of cutting through the noise.” Considering the fact that social media marketing can both increase a company’s exposure and traffic, the focus is getting their marketing strategy to stand out from all the other competitors who have realized its benefits. The solution? Artificial Intelligence. There are a multitude of AI marketing companies that utilize social media trends to target consumers; from sophisticated editors that rely on machine learning engines to keep tabs on industry competitors to recommendations on the best time to post, the best hashtags to use, and the best influencers to pay attention to, your business is able to maximize their marketing efforts and increase potential leads. Since the transportation industry isn’t necessarily well-known for its technological advances, some aren’t quite sure they want to commit to this brave new world just yet. “While we may use these types of tools [in the future] to help ensure we are reaching our target audiences in effective ways, our goal will always be to provide our audiences with content that matters to them and adds ­value,” said Mark Osborne, vice president of human resources at Day and Ross Transportation Group. Although it’s estimated that 72% of adults Internet users use Facebook (and countless others use Twitter, Instagram, etc.), it’s easy to understand Osborne’s hesitancy. Artificial intelligence is a big unknown, especially as tools continue to get more and more sophisticated; one of the main concerns is privacy. With AI and marketing techniques focusing heavily on personalized advertising — as, ironically, that is what has the biggest impact on consumers’ purchasing decisions –, some people are becoming wary of just how much information is being tracked and shared. However, as Stephen Boidock, director of marketing and...

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