2020 Festival of Books: Science writers discuss COVID-19 surge

Festival of Books Roundup

Science and Medicine: Looking at the Coronavirus and Pandemics

With Debora MacKenzie, Nicholas Christakis, Sonia Shah and moderator Soumya Karlamangla.

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“It will end with a whimper and not a bang,” said Sonia Shah, journalist and author of “Pandemic: Tracking Contagions, From Cholera to Ebola and Beyond.”

Shah was speaking at Friday’s science and medicine panel at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books — the theme of which, naturally, was COVID-19. The panelists had been asked to make predictions on when we can be rid of a pandemic that has just this week surged to previously unimaginable levels, and Shah’s was the most optimistic scenario they could muster: a series of deescalating surges, mitigated by a slowly disseminated vaccine and perhaps some herd immunity.


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US gives Qualcomm approval to sell 4G chips to Huawei despite sanctions

Qualcomm has received permission from the US to sell 4G mobile chips to Huawei, an exemption to the Trump administration’s ban on doing business with the Chinese company, Reuters reported. Qualcomm didn’t specify which products it’s allowed to sell to Huawei, but told Reuters they were related to mobile devices.

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© Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

In May 2019, the White House issued an executive order barring US companies from doing business with Chinese companies like Huawei due to national security concerns. In May of this year, the Commerce Department tightened the restrictions to require any overseas semiconductor manufacturers to get a license from the US if they used US equipment or technology to make chips for Huawei. And effective in September, the US began requiring foreign semiconductor manufacturers to get a license to sell chips —even if not designed for Huawei specs— that are intended for the

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New iPhone 13 Leak, iPhone 12 Mini Review, Stunning Debut For Powerful MacBooks

Taking a look back at another week of news and headlines from Cupertino, this week’s Apple Loop includes the impact of Apple’s new ARM-based M1 processor, the launch of the new MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Mac Mini, why nothing has changed for consumers, iPhone 13 features leak, reviewing the iPhone 12 Pro Max and iPhone 12 Mini, listening to the HomePod Mini, and Apple’s awkward server issues.

Apple Loop is here to remind you of a few of the very many discussions that have happened around Apple over the last seven days (and you can read my weekly digest of Android news here on Forbes).

The Power Behind The M1 Chip

This week’s ‘One More Thing’ event saw Apple reveal three new pieces of Mac hardware, but perhaps more importantly the M1 chip that lies at the heart of the next generation of Mac. This is Apple’s first ARM-based

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What Is The Most Exciting Car Chase Ever? Science Now Has An Answer To That Question

James Bond. Dominic Toretto. Furiosa. Mad Max. “Popeye” Doyle. Batman. Jason Bourne. These characters have all been part of some amazing car chases over the years.

But…which car chase reign supreme? Which one was truly the most pulse-pounding? Which car chase was so exciting that it raised our collective heart rates more than any other scene in movie history?

Well, now science has an answer to that question.

According to a study from money.co.uk study, the most heart-racing car movie of all time is Mad Max: Fury Road. The research group determined this by hooking up 100 volunteers to heartbeat monitors and tracking their pulses while they watched several different films.

The study also found several other noteworthy results, as

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Master skills in electronics, programming and robotics with $50, 15-course bundle

How do you stay on the cutting edge of a technology industry that continues to expand at an amazing pace, and with confidence? The ability to sharpen your skills and add to your toolbox is essential, and VentureBeat is serving up the perfect opportunity to do just that at an extremely discounted cost.

The Ultimate Raspberry Pi & ROS Robotics Developer Super Bundle is a remarkable 15-course resource that includes nearly 500 lessons. Normally, lifetime access to such a bundle would cost nearly $2,400 but it can now be yours for only $49.99 — a 97 percent price reduction.

Accelerate your career, or carve out a new one, by gaining new insight with 39 hours of content on electronics, programming, and robotics. An easy-to-stomach financial investment won’t take long to pay off.

Let’s review some of the courses you’ll have at your fingertips, each of which are valued at $200

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Which Tech Certifications And Expertise Pay The Most This Year?

  • Google Certified Professional Cloud Architect, CISM – Certified Information Security Manager and AWS Certified Solutions Architect are the three best paying tech certifications this year.
  • Earning a new certification can boost an IT professional’s salary by $12,000 or more.
  • 87% of IT professionals have at least one certification, while nearly 40% are already pursuing their next certification in 2020.
  • 40% of tech professionals are pursuing new certifications in the next six months.
  • North American IT professionals earn an average salary of $115,906, 36% higher than the worldwide average.

These and many other insights are from Global Knowledge’s 2020 IT Skills and Salary Report. You can download a copy of the report here. The report’s methodology is based on a survey Global Knowledge made available in web articles, online newsletters and social media, generating 9,505 completed responses. Responses from IT professionals based in Asia-Pacific, Canada, EMEA, Latin America and the

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Q&A on Information Technology With Daren Hubbard

Campus and Community

Q&A on Information Technology With Daren Hubbard

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Daren Hubbard is Tech’s chief information officer and vice president for Information Technology. (Photo by Allison Carter)

Daren Hubbard is Georgia Tech’s new chief information officer (CIO) and vice president for Information Technology. He came from Wayne State University, where he was the CIO and associate vice president for Computing and Information.

At Tech Hubbard provides vision, leadership, and oversight in the development and implementation of information technology. He also is a member of the Institute’s Recovery Task Force and he was recently asked to direct all Covid-19-related infrastructure and technology activities.

At his office in the Coda Building, Hubbard recently sat for a conversation that ranged from how he views the role of IT at a research university to his love of Corvettes, novelty socks,

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Uber’s Self-Driving Unit Is For Sale: TechCrunch

Uber Technologies Inc (NYSE: UBER) is looking to sell its self-driving unit, TechCrunch has reported.

What Happened: Uber’s Advanced Technologies Group has been negotiating the sale with Aurora Innovation, a self-driving technology startup. According to three people involved in the deal, the discussions started in October, and they are “far along.”

The ATG unit is currently valued at $7.25 billion, with investors like SoftBank Group (OTC: SFTBF)’s Vision Fund and Toyota (NYSE: TM).

Aurora Innovation provides software, data services and hardware, according to the company’s website. It is led by executives who previously worked at Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA), Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ: GOOGL) (NASDAQ: GOOG) and Uber.

Why It Matters: Uber has had a turbulent year, with the Q3 earnings report showing an 18% revenue loss.  

Earlier this year, it lost a deal with Chicago-based GrubHub Inc (NYSE: GRUB) that would have potentially brought its food delivery business to an

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Virginia Tech lets double-digit second half lead slip away against No. 9 Miami

Clinging to an opportunity late in the third quarter Saturday to put the pain of last weekend’s loss to Liberty a little further in the past, Virginia Tech instead blew an 11-point lead and fell to No. 9 Miami 25-24.

With the loss, Virginia Tech has dropped three of its last four games and seven consecutive outcomes against top-10 ranked opponents. Miami quarterback D’Eriq King, who passed for 255 yards, threw a 36-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Mark Pope with 5:59 left to give the Hurricanes (7-1, 6-1 ACC) their first lead.

Tech, which was out-gained 386-362 in yardage, had two more drives to try to regain the advantage after falling behind by a point.

Quarterback Hendon Hooker threw an interception with 5:52 left at Miami’s 35 to end Tech’s second-to-last possession. After taking over on the final possession at Tech’s own 4-yard line with 1:45 left and no

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SpaceX’s Starship Static Fire Test Didn’t Go as Planned

SpaceX performed a static fire test of its latest Starship prototype this week, but not all went as planned.

This was the third static fire test of the SN8 prototype, in which the rocket is fueled as if it were to be launched, then fires its engines for a few seconds which remains attached to the ground. But this time the test experienced some issues. As the vehicle fired its engines, some kind of material could be seen dripping from the base of the prototype, as reported by space.com. This is not a normal part of the test and indicates that something was going wrong.

Fortunately, the prototype was not destroyed in the test (as has happened before), but SpaceX CEO Elon Musk confirmed that there were issues.

“We lost vehicle pneumatics,” Musk said on Twitter. “Reason unknown at present. Liquid oxygen header tank pressure is rising. Hopefully triggers

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