by Anna Breuer

Elevators are generally far more convenient than going up and down the stairs, but today – in the age of the coronavirus – each ride appears fraught with peril.
While the first known elevators were likely designed and built by Archimedes, a modern passenger elevator was first built in 1793 by Ivan Kubilin and installed in the Winter Palace or Зимний дворец in St. Petersburg.
Fast forward to 1852, when Elisha Otis …

And the World’s Busiest Airport is… – But Only If Today is Saturday

by Anna Breuer
And the World’s Busiest Airport is… –  But Only If Today is Saturday

There are several ways to determine the world’s busiest airport.
One method is by passenger traffic, the total number of passengers emplaned and deplaned, but there hasn’t been a lot of that recently so let’s put that to the side. Another is the total of loaded and unloaded freight and mail.  The third is the number of traffic movements, meaning takeoffs and landings, at an airport.
Indeed, the Airports International Council, an industry …

Monday Is Memorial Day: Here’s What’s Open and What’s Closed

by Paul Riegler

You might not quite realize it, but this Monday is Memorial Day in the United States. The holiday that honors Americans who died while in military service.
Originally known as Decoration Day, the holiday marks the unofficial start of summer. Since 1970, it is a federal holiday observed on the last Monday in May.  As such, the observance this year on May 25 is the earliest the holiday can occur.
The manner of …

Review: Apple iOS 13.5 – Coronavirus Edition Addresses Pesky Mask and FaceTime Issues

by Kurt Stolz

Apple’s latest iOS update – 13.5 – is a sign of the times we live in.  The new version includes a new feature that allows users who are wearing masks to unlock their phones faster when they aren’t recognized by FaceID.  It also supports Covid-19 exposure notifications and improved group FaceTime calling.
Released on Wednesday, it should be available on your iPhone if you look for it in Settings or you …

Apple Stores to ‘Look a Little Different’ and Require Masks When They Reopen

by Paul Riegler
Apple Stores to ‘Look a Little Different’ and Require Masks When They Reopen

Shopping at Apple in the Coronavirus Age will “look a little different,” the company said.
Apple, which was one of the first global companies to shutter its stores in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, announced the steps it was taking to ensure the health and safety of customers and staff as it begins the process of reopening stores in various parts of the world.
“Things may look and feel a …

Photo Essay: Jones Beach State Park on Long Island, New York

by Paul Riegler

In New York, summer to many people means Jones Beach State Park, commonly referred to as Jones Beach, one of the state’s majestic ocean parks and a barrier island on Long Island’s south shore.
Jones Beach appears to be little changed from when it opened 90 years ago this summer. In addition to six and a half miles (ten and a half kilometers) of sand that gleams in the summer sun, the …

Airlines Wrestle with Face Mask Policies Amidst Coronavirus Pandemic: ‘The Current Policies are Toothless’

by Paul Riegler

While U.S. airlines want customers to see the friendly skies as safe from the novel coronavirus and all have policies requiring face masks, their approaches enforcement varies widely.
American Airlines will deny boarding to a passenger not wearing a mask, as will JetBlue Airways. On the opposite end of the spectrum, Southwest Airlines has told its gate agents not to stop passengers from boarding if they arrive sans mask, and United Airlines …

BMW Welt Reopens in Munich As Coronavirus Restrictions in Germany Ease

by Kurt Stolz

The BMW Welt, BMW’s €500 million ($540 million) brand experience and delivery center, reopened Friday after closing on March 17, following a directive issued by the Bavarian government for all tourist attractions to close.
Now the most popular tourist attraction in Munich, the BMW Welt opened its doors on October 17, 2007 with 800 guests in attendance, followed by a Tag der Öffenen Tür – or Open House – on …