Patriots 49, Bills 21

Patriots earn top seed in AFC playoffs

New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski spikes the ball after his touchdown against the Buffalo Bills in the third quarter of an NFL football game in Foxborough, Mass., Sunday Jan. 1, 2012. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)


The Bills scored touchdowns on their first three possessions, but the Patriots stormed back to claim home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.


Who could break out in 2012?

There’s no telling who’s going to flourish this year - but we’re willing to make some educated guesses.

2011 Bostonian of the Year Runners-Up

Bill and Joyce Cummings to give 90 percent to charity

Winchester’s Bill and Joyce Cummings made a fortune in commercial real estate. Now they’ve promised to give away nearly a billion dollars to charity.

Newt Gingrich, ahead of Tuesday’s caucuses, chatted with people during a lunch stop yesterday at The Farmer’s Kitchen restaurant in Atlantic, Iowa.


Laden with baggage, Newt Gingrich tries to defy odds

As Gingrich seeks the GOP presidential nomination, he is fighting not just for the country’s future, as he often proclaims, but also against his past. Momentum in Iowa tilting toward Romney

Iowa voters may deliver a caucus plot twist Tuesday that seemed unlikely just a few short weeks ago: propelling Romney toward the Republican presidential nomination.

First Night fireworks exploded over the Soldiers and Sailors Monument on Boston Common last night.

What’s likely to make news in 2012

From culture to politics, technology, the economy, sports, and casinos — a range of topics could be newsworthy this year.

“Negative advertising is popular among campaign strategists because it works. So what it says about us is that we pay attention to it, even as we decry it.”

Jeffrey Berry,  a Tufts University political science professor


Tags in this section:

December wraps up as second-warmest on record

There has been no measurable snowfall in the area since late October, a rare stretch making for gleeful golfers and a dramatic change from last winter.


President Obama’s election-year strategy is an attempt to capitalize on his recent victory on a short-term extension of the payroll tax cut and on his rising poll numbers.

Obama to escalate assault on Congress

President Obama plans to step up his offensive against Congress, concluding he cannot pass any major legislation in 2012 because of Republican hostility toward his agenda.

Nation & World

Tags in this section:

Adam Finkelstein and Kelly Rausch, of Frederick, Md., are breeding super-hardy queen bees to defeat colony collapse disorder and other threats. With up to one-third of colonies routinely dying off each year and the rest requiring extraordinary care, the quest for a better bee has become critical. Illustrates SUPERBEES (category a), by Adrian Higgins (c) 2011, The Washington Post. Moved Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2011. (MUST CREDIT: Washington Post photo by Linda Davidson.)

With bees dying off, a search for solutions takes on added urgency

Scientists are trying to find the cause of colony collapse disorder, the five-year-old phenomenon of worker bees suddenly disappearing


Tags in this section:

Dolphins 19, Jets 17

Miami linebacker Jason Taylor, playing his final game, was carried off the field by teammates after the win.

Dolphins take Jets out of contention

Coach Rex Ryan’s Super Bowl promise went unfulfilled as his New York Jets fell out of the playoff race with today’s loss.


Tags in this section:

As Boston museums surge, galleries struggle to keep up

Contemporary art is surging in Boston. So why is the gallery scene here so often overlooked? Commercial galleries are struggling in a weak economy and in a city that has not been viewed as supportive.


Tags in this section:

In 2012, the best place to . . .

It’s the little things that matter, so resolve to make the most of them in 2012 - starting with our micro sampler of random hot spots around the world.