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North Dakota’s COVID-19 app has been sending data to Foursquare and Google

North Dakota’s COVID-19 app has been sending data to Foursquare and Google

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementThe official COVID-19 contact-tracing app for the state of North Dakota, designed to detect whether people have potentially been exposed to the coronavirus, sends location data and a unique user identifier to Foursquare—and other data to Google and a bug-tracking company—according to from smartphone privacy company advertisementadvertisementThe app, called , and produced by a company called ProudCrowd that also makes a for North Dakota State sports fans, generates a random ID number for each person who uses it. Then, it can “anonymously cache the...

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Steven Melendez
5d ago
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Mark Zuckerberg’s new work-from-home zeal is very, very convenient

Mark Zuckerberg’s new work-from-home zeal is very, very convenient

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementI’ve been to Facebook’s a number of times, and it’s easy to understand why employees don’t often leave. Inside the , you get the same feeling as when you’re inside some huge Las Vegas casinos—that there’s just no reason to go outside.advertisementadvertisementAll the basics are covered. Facebook provides big cafeterias with gourmet food, as well as freestanding food joints and coffee shops. The company does employees’ dry cleaning, offers massages, provides sleep pods and nap rooms, and takes care of as much as it can to keep its people thinking about work...

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Mark Sullivan
4d ago
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What restaurants will actually be like in a post-COVID-19 world, according to CEOs and food experts

What restaurants will actually be like in a post-COVID-19 world, according to CEOs and food experts

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementBy Yasmin Gagne and Mark WilsonFor Fast Company’s , we’re asking business leaders to share their inside perspective on how the COVID-19 era is transforming their industries. Here’s what’s been lost—and what could be gained—in the new world order.advertisementadvertisement co-owner and cofounder of the Alinea Group, which includes Chicago’s Alinea and Roister restaurants, and founder and CEO of Tock, a restaurant reservation and ordering platformWe’re definitely not going to be opening any of our restaurants before June 15—and when we do open, if we’re...

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Mark Wilson
5d ago
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How Apple and Google could overcome the biggest barrier to digital contact tracing

How Apple and Google could overcome the biggest barrier to digital contact tracing

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementApple and Google announced a significant new step in their collaboration to help public health authorities . The companies say they’re ready to send out an application programming interface (API) that could let health agencies enlist the help of millions of smartphones in tracking the spread of COVID-19 from person to person.advertisementadvertisementThe API will let health agency apps use the Bluetooth in iOS and Android phones to detect and remember other smartphones that they’ve come near, in case the owner of one of the devices later proves to have...

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Mark Sullivan
5d ago
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Logitech webcams are sold out, but beware no-name alternatives on Amazon

Logitech webcams are sold out, but beware no-name alternatives on Amazon

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementOn Amazon, the listing for looks promising. The USB camera supports 1080p resolution, has a built-in mounting bracket, and includes a microphone with “Double Noise Reduction” technology. It even comes with a snap-on privacy shutter to cover up the lens.advertisementadvertisementReality is harsher. While the camera produces sharp-enough video, the picture is so washed out that it gives me a ghastly appearance, and its microphone only produces quiet, muffled audio on the left audio channel. Its sole power indicator light is also on all the time, so unlike...

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Jared Newman
May 18
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‘We may have to rethink the toilet seat altogether’: How the coronavirus could change bathrooms for the better

‘We may have to rethink the toilet seat altogether’: How the coronavirus could change bathrooms for the better

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementEven before COVID-19, the United States was behind in its approach to public restroom design: gendered bathrooms with typical foot-revealing stalls (or even totally unencased urinals) lack the privacy, cleanliness, and comfort of their gender-neutral, single-pod counterparts in Europe and Asia. But as the U.S. gears up for a reopening in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, the inadequacies that were once uncomfortable are revealing themselves to be downright dangerous.advertisementadvertisementConsider that the vast majority of commercial bathrooms in the...

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Lara Sorokanich
May 11
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Can an artificial intelligence learn to beat the stock market?

Can an artificial intelligence learn to beat the stock market?

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementBy William D. CohanOn the far side of an office park in a suburb of Seattle, a supercomputer is teaching itself to beat the stock market.advertisementadvertisementThe holy grail of high finance doesn’t look like much: eight rows of servers enshrined in a black metal frame. But inside this austere enclosure, an incredible alchemy is taking place. Four hundred computers blink and hum as market data is digested at a rate of one quadrillion calculations per second, firing order requests to electronic traders in Chicago, 2,000 miles away. Outside the...

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William D. Cohan
May 18
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The ‘Tiger King’ industrial complex is everything that’s wrong with Hollywood in 2020

The ‘Tiger King’ industrial complex is everything that’s wrong with Hollywood in 2020

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementAfter catching lightning in a bottle, you’re not supposed to stand around in the exact same spot with the exact same bottle and just hope it happens again.advertisementadvertisementUnfortunately, that seems to be the prevailing mindset of the entertainment industry in recent years, and in the aftermath of Tiger King‘s roaring success, studios are sticking to the script.Directors Eric Goode and Rebecca Chaiklin found themselves in the right place at the right time over five years ago, when conservationist Goode and caught a glimpse of a newly purchased snow...

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Joe Berkowitz
May 13
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This twist on the four-day workweek could get people back to work without causing new outbreaks

This twist on the four-day workweek could get people back to work without causing new outbreaks

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementThere’s an obvious risk to reopening the economy during the pandemic, even in places where the number of COVID-19 cases is dropping: As more people come back into contact, cases could surge again, and businesses could be forced to shut down a second time. South Korea is seeing a new spike in cases after the outbreak seemed to be under control. In China, new cases have emerged in Wuhan, the original epicenter of the virus. But an adjustment to work schedules—along with social distancing and other tools like contact tracing—could help businesses that can’t...

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Adele Peters
May 12
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The Netherlands is slashing emissions by as much as 12 megatons this year—because of a lawsuit

The Netherlands is slashing emissions by as much as 12 megatons this year—because of a lawsuit

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementAs the Trump administration continues to roll back climate policy in the U.S., including changes to clean car rules that will allow cars to emit nearly more carbon dioxide than they otherwise would have, the Netherlands is moving in the other direction, rolling out a set of new policies that will drastically cut emissions this year and put the country well on the path to its goal of becoming climate neutral by 2050.advertisementBut the Dutch government isn’t acting voluntarily: The new policies are the result of a seven-year-long lawsuit from an...

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Adele Peters
May 7
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More people are ready to go back on a cruise ship than you think

More people are ready to go back on a cruise ship than you think

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementCarnival Cruise Line is planning to , floating the promise of steeply discounted travel ($28 per night!) to lure people back to its ships. It will be the first major operator to resume cruising in the age of COVID-19, and it will set sail from Miami; Galveston, Texas; and Port Canaveral, Florida.This despite the fact that the number of coronavirus cases shows  About are now in some stage of reopening, which is music to the ears of many organizations that were shuttered or slowed due to shelter-in-place orders, including cruise ships. The sector was among...

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Lydia Dishman
May 4
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Google is forcing all Nest users to use two-factor authentication—and that’s a good thing

Google is forcing all Nest users to use two-factor authentication—and that’s a good thing

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementIf you’re a Nest user who doesn’t already use two-factor authentication on your account, Google is about to force you to. But that’s a good thing.Two-factor authentication, or 2FA for short, is a type of authentication procedure where a user needs to enter two types of information when logging in to an account. This information usually includes their password as well as a separate code emailed or texted to them, or one generated from an authentication app.The idea behind 2FA is it makes it virtually impossible for someone to log in to your account, even if...

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Michael Grothaus
May 5
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How cities are reshaping streets to prepare for life after lockdown

How cities are reshaping streets to prepare for life after lockdown

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementAs the daily coronavirus death toll slowly falls in Italy and cities in the country make plans for reopening, Milan is beginning to transform 22 miles of local streets, adding temporary bike lanes and wider sidewalks, and lowering the speed limit. In Berlin, some parking spots have also become pop-up bike lanes. Paris is fast-tracking long-distance bike lanes that connect suburbs to the city center. And in Brussels, on May 4, the city center will become a priority zone for people on bikes and on foot.advertisementadvertisementThe city of the future is for...

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Adele Peters
Apr 27
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Amazon, Walmart, Target mega-strike: Here’s what to know about the sprawling protest

Amazon, Walmart, Target mega-strike: Here’s what to know about the sprawling protest

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementWorkers across the pandemic’s front lines plan to strike together this Friday, May 1, on International Workers’ Day, to protest what they say are unsafe conditions and a lack of protection from their employers.advertisementWhole Foods, Amazon, Target, and Instacart workers are striking on May 1st— Michael Sainato (@msainat1) The May Day General Strike will unite employees at Amazon, Whole Foods, Instacart, Target, Shipt, FedEx, and Walmart in a single, sprawling effort. According to a press release by The Intercept, workers—mostly non-unionized, given...

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Connie Lin
Apr 30
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Why government websites fail

Why government websites fail

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementNormally, lots of people go through their lives barely interacting online with the government. If you are a U.S. citizen, regularly pay taxes, and don’t need food, housing, or health care assistance, you are probably only annoyed when you have to do something such as apply for a passport or renew your driver’s license, and even then your annoyance level is minimal.advertisementadvertisementBut during a crisis, a lot more of the population suddenly needs the government’s help, and they are then shocked!— simply shocked!—to discover that those interactions...

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Hana Schank
Apr 28
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What will it take to massively scale up COVID-19 testing to the level we need?

What will it take to massively scale up COVID-19 testing to the level we need?

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementIn the U.S., which now has more confirmed COVID-19 cases than any other country in the world, around 150,000 people are being tested for the virus each day. But that’s a fraction of the number of tests needed to be able to quickly contain any resurgence of the virus while we let people return to work and day-to-day life. By some estimates, we need to be doing 20 million to 30 million tests a day to get there. Even the more conservative estimates say we need to do at least half a million per day.advertisementadvertisementAnyone with symptoms should be...

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Adele Peters
Apr 23
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Anand Giridharadas wanted a gritty current affairs show on Vice TV. He got it

Anand Giridharadas wanted a gritty current affairs show on Vice TV. He got it

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementWhen author started talking with Vice TV in early March about hosting a new primetime show that would riff on current events, he knew he wanted to depart from the slick sound bites that dominate cable news, where he has been a regular presence since the publication of his 2018 best seller, Winners Take All: The Elite Charade of Changing the World.advertisementadvertisement“It’s all so economized and corporatized and sped up,” Giridharadas says of the talking-head paradigm.He envisioned choreographing something different—a show with room for deep...

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Ainsley Harris
Apr 22
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Why coronavirus won’t be the end of it

Why coronavirus won’t be the end of it

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementBy Judith Lewis Mernit is an award-winning publication that reports from California on economic, political, and social issues.advertisementadvertisementThe Aedes aegypti mosquito, a black and white-spotted insect no longer than the width of a human fingernail, sickens more people every year than the novel coronavirus, influenza and cancer combined. It lands lightly on an infected host and carries its potentially deadly payload – in the form of any number of viruses – to its next victim without a sound. Unlike other, less lethal mosquitoes, Aedes...

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Judith Lewis Mernit
Apr 21
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Shake Shack returns $10 million PPP loan meant for coronavirus-hit small businesses

Shake Shack returns $10 million PPP loan meant for coronavirus-hit small businesses

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementShake Shack, the fast-food burger chain worth over $1.6 billion, has decided to return the $10 million Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan that it was awarded after it applied for emergency funds that were aimed at helping small businesses through the economic effect of the COVID-19 pandemic. The PPP program originally set out $349 billion for small businesses, but .Shake Shack founder and chairman Danny Meyer and CEO Randy Garutti posted announcing the company was returning the funds. In that letter the pair explained why Shake Shack applied for the...

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Michael Grothaus
Apr 20
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Will coronavirus quarantines lead more companies to consider 4-day workweeks?

Will coronavirus quarantines lead more companies to consider 4-day workweeks?

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementAs the coronavirus crisis forces more companies to participate in a massive experiment in remote working, it raises questions about how work might change when the health crisis passes, and if companies may be more open to alternative forms of working in the future—including not just letting employees work from home but allowing new variations in schedules, such as the four-day workweek.advertisementadvertisement“Often when companies don’t allow remote work, it has to do with not necessarily a lack of trust in the person, it’s a lack of trust in the...

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Adele Peters
Mar 19
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COVID-19 could forever change how we travel—for better or worse

COVID-19 could forever change how we travel—for better or worse

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementThe good news: we are a resilient species and we’ll get past this devastating COVID-19 pandemic, albeit far from unscathed. The bad news: the implications of climate change are of future pandemics involving both existing and brand-new infectious diseases, so the days of system shock followed by collective amnesia will need to end. The realities of a post-COVID-19 world will pose new challenges to cities and transportation systems in particular—from airlines and light-rail networks to ride-hailing platforms and even micro-mobility services. That’s because,...

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Devin Liddell
Apr 13
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The biggest barrier to future space exploration is in our heads

The biggest barrier to future space exploration is in our heads

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementIn 1945 British science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke—now best known for 2001: A Space Odyssey—correctly the invention of satellites, the first of which launched into space in 1958. Then in 1963, Clarke that a man would land on the moon and safely return to Earth sometime around the year 1970—which Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin did in the summer of 1969. In 1973, Clarke a future where humans would be able to monitor outer-space threats such as asteroids and other near-earth objects—NASA its Near-Earth Object Observations Program in...

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Jared Lindzon
Oct 22
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The coronavirus butterfly effect: Six predictions for a new world order

The coronavirus butterfly effect: Six predictions for a new world order

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementBy Parag Khanna and Karan KhemkaIn chaos theory, the butterfly effect describes a small change that can have massive, unpredictable consequences. An insect flaps its wings and, weeks later, causes a tornado.advertisementadvertisementThe coronavirus is more like an earthquake, with aftershocks that will permanently reshape the world.If we are lucky, the world will pass “peak virus” within the next six months. But the economy, governments, and social institutions will take years to recover in the best-case scenario. Indeed, rather than even speak of...

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Karan Khemka
Apr 14
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Why we should rethink competition in the workforce

Why we should rethink competition in the workforce

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementBy Beth JensenCompetition is usually considered a healthy business practice, but leaders who encourage it within an organization risk creating serious dysfunction that can torpedo success.advertisementadvertisementThat’s the message from Stanford Graduate School of Business’ , the Thomas M. Siebel Professor of Business Leadership, Strategy, and Organizations, who also serves as the faculty director of the Stanford Executive Program.“Though we’d love it if competition always had positive consequences, it often has very negative consequences, both for the...

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Beth Jensen
Apr 14
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Surprise, surprise: Anti-vaxxers are spreading false claims about cures for COVID-19

Surprise, surprise: Anti-vaxxers are spreading false claims about cures for COVID-19

UPDATES: advertisementadvertisementIn the past several years, social media has given a soap box to a previously niche group of people who are against vaccination. This group, known colloquially as anti-vaxxers, fabricates stories about the danger of vaccines in attempt to discredit them. Now, the COVID-19 pandemic has given some members of this faction an opportunity to spread more anti-vaccine propaganda, and it’s starting to make its way to the mainstream.advertisementA new report from Yonder, a company that dissects popular social media interactions to understand trends, has found that...

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Ruth Reader
Apr 13
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