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America

Washington pledges $1 billion for coronavirus vaccine as pandemic risks grow

U.S. President Donald Trump will seek $2.5 billion from Congress to fight the coronavirus epidemic and U.S. and South Korean militaries are considering scaling back joint training as the virus spreads in Europe and the Middle East. Advertising Read more Countries around the world are stepping up efforts to prevent a pandemic of the flu-like virus that originated from China late last year and has now infected more than 80,000 people, 10 times more cases than the SARS coronavirus. The White House said more than $1 billion of the requested virus budget would go toward developing a vaccine, while other funds would be used for therapeutics and the stockpiling of personal protective equipment such as masks. The U.S. and South Korean militaries said on Monday they may cut back joint training due to mounting concerns about the spreading coronavirus, in one of the first concrete signs of the virus's fallout on global U.S. military activities. The disclosure came during a visit to ..

Tech

Removing a GPS tracking device from your car isnt theft, court rules

Enlarge / Indiana Chief Justice Loretta Rush.Indiana Supreme Court An Indiana man may beat a drug prosecution after the state's highest court threw out a search warrant against him late last week. The search warrant was based on the idea that the man had "stolen" a GPS tracking device belonging to the government. But Indiana's Supreme Court concluded that he'd done no such thing—and the cops should have known it. Last November, we wrote about the case of Derek Heuring, an Indiana man the Warrick County Sheriff's Office suspected of selling meth. Authorities got a warrant to put a GPS tracker on Heuring's car, getting a stream of data on his location for six days. But then the data stopped. Officers suspected Heuring had discovered and removed the tracking device. After waiting for a few more days, they got a warrant to search his home and a barn belonging to his father. They argued the disappearance of the tracking device was evidence that Heuring had stolen ..

Tech

Apple Maps expands its Street View competitor to Boston, DC, Philadelphia

Diamond City Fenway Park in Boston, as seen in Apple Maps' Look Around feature. Samuel Axon The US Capitol Building in Look Around. The Philadelphia Museum of Art in Look Around. Samuel Axon Boston Public Garden in Look Around. Samuel Axon The White House in Look Around—or about as close as you can get, anyway. Samuel Axon Philly's Reading Terminal Market in Look Around. Harvard Square in Look Around. Samuel Axon DC's Washington Monument in Look Around. Samuel Axon Apple Maps has been slowly expanding regional coverage for its Google Street View-like Look Around feature, and now MacRumors forum members have spotted rollouts for the feature in the US cities of Philadelphia, Boston, and Washington DC. Look Around was added as a feature in iOS 13 last September, but it launched with coverage only in or near San Francisco. Like Google Street View, the feature allows users to zoom in to street-level photography of most streets in an urban area. Apple d..

Tech

WHO tries to calm talk of pandemic, says the word “does not fit the facts”

Enlarge / World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus gives a press conference on the situation regarding the COVID-19 at Geneva's WHO headquarters on February 24, 2020. Getty | Fabrice Coffrini As outbreaks of the new coronavirus flare up in several countries beyond China, experts at the World Health Organization on Monday tried to rein in fears and media speculation that the public health emergency will become a pandemic. “I have spoken consistently about the need for facts, not fear,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a press briefing Monday. “Using the word pandemic now does not fit the facts, but it may certainly cause fear.” As always, the director-general (who goes by Dr. Tedros) and his colleagues at WHO tried to shift the conversation away from speculation and worst-case scenarios. Instead, they want to focus on data and preparation. In doing so, though, Dr. Tedros noted that some of the latest figures in the epidem..

Tech

Online prices skyrocket in Italy amid coronavirus fears

Online retailers in Italy have found an easy way to take advantage of widespread coronavirus panic: hawking sold-out products for exorbitant prices. While pharmacies run out of sanitizing products and masks, the same items appeared online at inflated prices set by individual merchants. A 250 ml. bottle of Amuchina — a popular hand sanitizer which normally costs €7.50 — was sold for €50 on eBay Monday. A one-liter bottle of the same product reached a record price of €799. Overpriced common products were displayed as specifically conceived to protect against the virus, even if they are not. Politicians and consumer groups promptly pointed the finger at online merchants and platforms. “This is not free market [but] a shameful speculation that has to be stopped immediately,” reads a parliamentary question submitted Monday by Partito Democratico MP Marianna Madia. The center-left group is part of the governing coalition. Codacons, a major Italian consumer organization, filed a complai..

UK Politics

National Debt Isnt $23 Trillion, Its $122 Trillion, Group Says

WASHINGTON—Americas current national debt stands at roughly $23.3 trillion, according to the U.S. Treasury Departments “Debt to the Penny” website, which is so precise that visitors can pick a specific date in the recent past—say Jan. 1, 2000—and get the exact amount on that day: $5,776,091,314,225.33. While based on those figures, the national debt has more than quadrupled in that time frame, its actually much worse than that, according to calculations by Bill Bergman. “This calculation highlights some of the pitfalls and perils of false precision,” Bergman, the director of research for the Chicago-based nonprofit advocacy group Truth in Accounting (TIA), told The Epoch Times. “The U.S. government does not include the unfunded obligations for Social Security and Medicare under current law. These massive negative positions are so high that Truth in Accounting believes the true national debt runs north of $100 trillion.” $122,309,089,510,200, to be exact. Because future obligations..

UK Politics

Appeals Court Allows Trump Admin to Enforce Rule Prohibiting Title X Funding for Abortion

A federal appeals court has allowed a Trump administration family planning rule to take effect that prohibits clinics from using a federal grant program, known as Title X, to perform or refer abortions. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday ruled 7-4 to lift injunctions ordered by courts in Oregon, California, and Washington state while the cases play out in the courts. A three-judge panel from the court had previously lifted the injunctions, prompting abortion-rights groups and states to appeal the case to the full court of the circuit court for review. Title X of the Public Health Service Act, a grant program enacted in the 1970s, provided funding for certain types of pre-pregnancy family planning services. In 1988, HHS regulations were put in place to forbid clinics receiving Title X funds from providing counseling or referrals for abortion as a method of family planning. Those regulations were suspended several years later, but the Trump administration is now seeking to..

America

NASA mathematician Katherine Johnson, who inspired the film Hidden Figures, dies at 101

Issued on: 24/02/2020 – 17:34Modified: 24/02/2020 – 17:34 Katherine Johnson, the black woman whose mathematical genius took her from a behind-the-scenes job in a segregated NASA as portrayed in the film “Hidden Figures” to a key role in sending humans to the moon, died on Monday at the age of 101, NASA said. Advertising Read more “Our NASA family is sad to learn the news that Katherine Johnson passed away this morning at 101 years old,” NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine posted to Twitter. “She was an American hero and her pioneering legacy will never be forgotten.” Johnson was awarded a Presidential Medal of Freedom by former President Barack Obama in 2015, and in 2016 he cited her in his State of the Union Address as an example of America's spirit of discovery. “She's one of the greatest minds ever to grace our agency or our country,” then NASA Administrator Charles Bolden said when Johnson was presented the presidential medal. In 2016, NASA named a research faci..

Tech

One of NASAs greatest mathematicians, Katherine Johnson, has died

Enlarge / Katherine Johnson sits at her desk with a globe, or "Celestial Training Device." NASA Katherine Johnson, a trailblazing mathematician best known for her contributions to NASA's human spaceflight program and who gained fame later in life due to the movie Hidden Figures, died Monday. She was 101 years old. "At NASA, we will never forget her courage and leadership and the milestones we could not have reached without her," said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. "We will continue building on her legacy and work tirelessly to increase opportunities for everyone who has something to contribute toward the ongoing work of raising the bar of human potential." Born in rural West Virginia on August 26, 1918, Johnson showed an aptitude for mathematics early in life. “I counted everything," she said late in life of her formative years. "I counted the steps to the road, the steps up to church, the number of dishes and silverware I washed… anything that could be counted, I did." Wh..

Tech

Open source licenses: What, which, and why

Enlarge / Most open source projects are vastly more restrictive with their trademarks than their code. OpenBSD's Puffy, Linux's Tux, and the FSF's Meditating Gnu are among the few FOSS logos that can easily and legally be remixed and reused for simple illustrative purposes.OpenBSD, Free Software Foundation, Larry Ewing, Seattle Municipal Archives Most people have at least heard of open source software by now—and even have a fairly good idea of what it is. Its own luminaries argue incessantly about what to call it—with camps arguing for everything from Free to Libre to Open Source and every possible combination of the above—but the one thing every expert agrees on is that it's not open source (or whatever) if it doesn't have a clearly attributed license. You can't just publicly dump a bunch of source code without a license and say "whatever—it's there, anybody can get it." Due to the way copyright law works in most of the world, freely available code ..

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