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Genetic analysis of the coronavirus gives scientists clues about how it’s spreading

As the coronavirus spreads around the globe, it has mutated in tiny, subtle ways. Those mutations aren’t cause for concern, and so far, don’t appear to be making the virus any more or less dangerous. But scientists can use those slight changes to track the virus from person to person, and location to location. “If…

Quit trying to make Quibi happen

But that logic is difficult to follow after watching several episodes of Dishmantled, a cooking show hosted by Titus Burgess that's part hyper-accelerated Chopped, part voyeuristically punishing Japanese gameshow. In every 5 minute episode, chefs are blindfolded and assaulted by an exploding mystery dish. Their goal: To eat the disgusting remnants from the floor and…

Rivian Wants to Bring Electric Trucks to the Masses

During the summer of 2006, back when RJ Scaringe was working through a degree in automotive engineering at MIT, he began to wonder how difficult it might be to live within strict environmental boundaries. How much would you have to change—and how fast, for how long—if you desired to wipe away the carbon traces of…

The forgotten dream of second-screen gaming

And, of course, there was the Wii U in 2012. Though it represents a cringeworthy period of Nintendo history, the Wii U served as a necessary predecessor to today's Switch, allowing the company to experiment with its own brand of dual-display gaming and welcoming developers to think in new ways. Rayman Legends was arguably the…

For Open-Source Ventilators, Making Them Is the Easy Part

Hello again. In these times of enforced isolation, I’m thankful to have this direct line to all of you. Feel free to stay in touch through [email protected], and use the subject line ASK LEVY, even if you’re not asking me a question. But do ask me a question—I’m running low.And a gentle reminder: For now,…

ASUS adds new Intel chips to its Zephyrus gaming laptops

ASUS's engineers have added a few other premium features as well, including a full desktop-style keyboard with per-key RGB LED backlighting, and a unique AAS cooling solution that opens a large intake vent beneath the system when the lid is raised.The Zephyrus 15, meanwhile, comes with the same top-level components in a more compact form,…

Lenovo’s latest gaming laptops pack more efficient NVIDIA graphics

Lenovo is leaping quickly on the latest NVIDIA and Intel technology for its gaming laptops. It's introducing Legion 5i and Legion 7i portables (successors to the Y540 and Y740 respectively) that, most notably, are among the first to use NVIDIA's Advanced Optimus graphics switching. The tech both lowers power consumption in less-intensive moments and ramps…

NVIDIA’s RTX Super GPUs arrive on laptops

First up, as rumored, NVIDIA revealed portable versions of the RTX 2080 Super and RTX 2070 Super Max-Q GPUs for flagship-caliber gaming and creator laptops. These will be NVIDIA's best laptop GPUs, though they have very similar specs to the older models.The RTX 2080 Max-Q will be discontinued, but NVIDIA will continue to sell the…

T-Mobile Swallows Sprint, Leaving 3 US Cellphone Giants

T-Mobile completed its acquisition of Sprint Wednesday, officially reducing the number of major mobile carriers in the US from four to three.With the deal closed, T-Mobile's outspoken CEO John Legere stepped down, as planned, and was replaced by company president Mike Sievert.To win approval of the deal, T-Mobile promised regulators not to raise prices and…

A Brief History of the Census—and How Covid-19 Could Change It

The United States is currently undertaking its population census, the once-a-decade effort to count every single person living here. More than 150 other countries will join in this world census round—the 10-year period centered on 2020, and around 90 percent of the world’s population has already been or will be counted.But while impressive on a…

Sony debuts $200 headphones with powerful ANC and long battery life

Sony isn't clear if it's the exact same adaptive noise cancellation that the WH-1000XM3 employs, but the WH-CH719N comes with powerful ANC that should hold its own. The company says these headphones monitor your surroundings with "Dual Noise Sensor Technology" and uses it to "improve" the noise cancellation as needed. Like the WH-1000XM3, these headphones…

A One-Time Poultry Farmer Invents the Future of Refrigeration

Back in 2001, a middle-aged man made a video of his car and sent it around to a few friends. So far, so predictable—but this video featured a dilapidated Vauxhall Nova whizzing around a junk-strewn yard in a cloud of fog. At the wheel was Peter Dearman, a rumpled-looking autodidact who had spent the better…

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How to Get Health Insurance During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Photo: ShutterstockRecent world events may have led you to believe that this would be a bad time to not have health insurance right now. And while we can’t judge your individual need for insurance, we can probably say that in general, you should think about getting coverage.But if you don’t have coverage through work—or you…

France orders Google to pay news companies for showing article extracts

After the law came into effect last year, Google said that it would simply remove snippets altogether unless publishers granted it the right to do so. However, the ruling body (called l’Autorité de la Concurrence) said that the “the vast majority of press publishers have granted Google licenses to use and display their protected content...…

Facebook will provide free Portal devices to UK hospitals and care homes

Facebook’s support for the fight against COVID-19 now includes a simple but important addition: keeping people in touch. It’s partnering with the UK’s National Health Service to offer up to 2,050 free Portal video calling devices to the country’s hospitals, care homes, hospices and other medical settings. The hardware will help patients contact friends and…

Here’s what Twitter’s weird ‘data-sharing’ notification really means

Twitter Prior to this update, Twitter allowed users to opt out of data sharing that enabled Twitter to tell advertisers how users interacted with ads for mobile apps, and share some “non-public” information like device identifiers. Now, most Twitter users have no choice whether or not that data is shared with Twitter’s advertisers. Those in…

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