AP Trends Summary Brief at 5:38 p.m. EST

Remote desert camps accommodate World Cup fans on a budget

AL KHOR, Qatar (AP) — World Cup supporters, finding hotels in central Doha either booked up or far beyond their budget, have made do with huge fan villages a few hours from the city. From the moment Qatar was named host of the World Cup, fears grew as to how the small country would accommodate the massive influx of 1.2 million fans – about a third of the country’s total population. Qatar’s rapid construction program has delivered tens of thousands of rooms through new hotels, rental apartments and even three giant cruise ships. But rising prices have forced many thrifty fans into remote desert campgrounds and huge fan villages on the outskirts of Doha, including one near the airport made up of corrugated box storage.

Face recognition may help preserve seals, scientists say

FREEPORT, Maine (AP) – Face recognition technology is mostly associated with applications like surveillance and authentication of human faces, but a group of scientists think they’ve found a new use for it: storing seals. A research team from Colgate University developed SealNet, a database of seal faces created by photographing dozens of harbor seals in Maine’s Casco Bay. The team found that its accuracy in identifying the marine mammals is close to 100%, no small feat in an ecosystem home to thousands of seals. The researchers are working on expanding their database to make it available to other scientists.

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Researchers: AI in connected cars relieves traffic jams at rush hour

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Researchers in Tennessee say they have successfully deployed artificial intelligence in a group of wirelessly connected cars to ease rush-hour traffic on Interstate 24. In the experiment, 100 test cars sent traffic information back and forth. Your adaptive cruise control has been modified to react to the overall flow of traffic using artificial intelligence. The aim was to reduce phantom jams. That’s the start-and-stop traffic jam on crowded streets that has no apparent cause. The researchers are still calculating the numbers but say the experiment was a success. Fewer stop-and-go trips not only reduce driver frustration, but also save fuel and reduce pollution.

4 Philadelphia teenagers shot dead in drive-by near high school

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Four students are injured in an apparent drive-by shooting shortly after their Philadelphia high school was dismissed early for the day. Metropolitan police said two 15-year-old girls and two 16-year-old boys were shot dead late Wednesday morning. All were in stable condition and were treated in hospital. The shooting took place about a block from Overbrook High School in West Philadelphia. It happened just after school closed for parent-teacher conferences.

LAPD officer wrongfully shot dead girl, 14

LOS ANGELES (AP) – The Los Angeles Police Commission has ruled that an officer broke guidelines when he fired a gun at a suspect in a clothing store last year, killing a 14-year-old girl. The civilian panel ruled Tuesday that Officer William Jones was authorized to fire one shot but not the other two in quick succession at a store in Burlington in North Hollywood last December. A man, Daniel Elena Lopez, carrying a heavy bike lock, had brutally assaulted two women inside the store. Jones told investigators he believed Elena Lopez had a gun and was shooting at people. His shots killed Elena Lopez and one went through a locker room wall, killing Valentina Orellana Peralta. Her family has sued.

Salt, drought decimates buffalo in Iraq’s southern marshes

CHIBAYISH, Iraq (AP) — Iraq’s water buffalo are suffering from dire water shortages in the country’s famed southern swamps. Herders struggle to keep their animals alive and have watched many die, poisoned by salty water seeping into the low-lying wetlands. The swamps — a lush remnant of the cradle of civilization and a sharp contrast to the desert that dominates much of the Middle East — were reborn after Saddam Hussein was overthrown in 2003, when he built dams to drain the area and the Shias to root out rebels were dismantled. But today they are once again at risk from drought, which experts believe is being caused by climate change and encroaching salt, and the lack of a political deal between Iraq and Turkey.

Seven Michigan Street football players attacked in tunnel melee

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — Seven Michigan State football players were charged last month in a scuffle in Michigan Stadium tunnel. A statement from the Washtenaw County Attorney’s Office said the most serious charge is against Michigan State player Khary Crump for felonious assault. The charges against the other six are misdemeanors. Five are charged with aggravated assault, one with assault and assault. The incident happened on October 29, when several members of the Michigan State soccer team beat up two Michigan players. Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh had previously said he expected the suspended Spartans to be charged.

Over in 9 minutes: How the Celtic gold robbery in Germany took place

BERLIN (AP) — Officials say thieves who broke into a southern German museum and stole hundreds of antique gold coins got in and out within nine minutes. Police have launched an international hunt for the thieves and their loot, consisting of 483 Celtic coins and a lump of unworked gold, discovered near the town of Manching in 1999. As the thieves left at 1.35am, Bavarian police said there was “Parallels” between the raid in Manching and the theft of priceless jewels and a large gold coin in Dresden and Berlin. The Bavarian science and arts minister said Wednesday evidence pointed to the work of professionals.

Taliban whip 12 people in front of a crowd at a stadium in Afghanistan

ISLAMABAD (AP) – A local official says the Taliban flogged three women and nine men in front of hundreds of spectators at a provincial sports stadium in central Afghanistan. It signaled the resumption of a brutal form of punishment by the religious extremist group that was a hallmark of its rule in the 1990s. The governor’s office in Logar province sent out invitations to Wednesday’s floggings via social media. Those convicted received between 21 and 39 lashes each after being convicted by a local court of alleged theft and adultery. The resumption of the practice underscored the Taliban’s intention to adhere to their radical interpretation of Islamic law, or Sharia.

Wilko Johnson, British rocker who defied cancer, dies aged 75

LONDON (AP) — Wilko Johnson, the guitarist for British blues-rock band Dr. Feelgood, who enjoyed an unexpected career renaissance after being diagnosed with terminal cancer, has died. He was 75 years old. According to Johnson’s family, the musician died at his home in south-east England on Monday night. In the early 1970s, Johnson and friends founded Dr. feel good The anarchic R&B band helped inspire the punk explosion, but Johnson quit in 1977. In 2012 he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and told he was terminal. He went on a farewell tour and recorded what was intended to be the final album. After an operation in 2014, he was declared cancer-free. He released another album in 2018 and was touring with his band until last month.

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