Coronavirus testing might look a lot different in crowded areas if this trial project is successful: Scientists from the UK are looking to see if dogs can recognize patients by a particular smell.Dogs have already been trained to sniff out other medical conditions, including cancer, malaria, and Parkinson’s.Dogs able to recognize a particular smell for COVID-19 patients could help authorities prevent transmission in crowded places and prevent future outbreaks.Visit BGR’s homepage for more stories.
Extensive testing for the novel coronavirus is a crucial weapon against the pandemic, as seen in countries like South Korea, which was able to significantly flatten the curve, and Germany, which is testing an average of 500,000 people a week. COVID-19 screening can help authorities get a better picture of the number of active cases in hot zones, and provide early care to everyone testing positive, especially the elderly and those with preexisting health conditions.
The problem many countries have to face is that there aren’t enough test kits to go around. But what if dogs could sniff out people who are infected and pinpoint them in a crowd?
The charity Medical Detection Dogs partnered with Durham University and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) on a trial to see if dogs can sniff out COVID-19 patients.
The charity has trained dogs to spot malaria, cancer, and Parkinson’s patients, as each disease has its own scent, BBC reports. LSHTM head of disease control Professor James Logan said that research proved dogs could detect malaria infections by odor with a level of accuracy “above the World Health Organization standards for a diagnostic.”
That doesn’t mean good boys will be as good as recognizing a particular smell for the novel coronavirus, of course. But if they are, they could be used in all sorts of cases to sniff out potential carriers within large groups of people. The dog test would then be confirmed by an actual COVID-19 test.
The dogs could be ready in six weeks, assuming the trial yields positive results. However, this method of testing will be of limited use, considering it can’t be scaled to meet current needs. But the dogs might be useful down the road to prevent the reemergence of COVID-19 and catch future outbreaks early.
The charity is studying ways to “safely catch the odor of the virus from patients,” according to its boss, Dr. Claire Guest. It’s not just safety for humans, but also from dogs. A 17-year-old Pomeranian tested positive in Hong Kong. Initially, it wasn’t clear whether the dog had the disease, but successive tests showed he developed antibodies for the infection. The dog was released back home after testing negative, but then died of old age.
Separately, a French medical body urged per owners to wash their hands after petting them, as the risk of catching the new coronavirus from animals has yet to be ruled out.
Image Source: Jeff Chiu/AP/Shutterstock
Chris Smith started writing about gadgets as a hobby,
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Huawei was one of the first companies to adopt Android – the U8220 was unveiled just months after the T-Mobile G1. But for this article we wanted to focus on one of the phones that laid the groundwork for what Huawei phones are today (and if you want to know more about the company’s history, we recommend this Counterclockwise article).
Huawei Ascend P6 official pictures
The Huawei Ascend P6 was the thinnest mass market smartphone when it launched in June of 2013. It wasn’t the thinnest, of course, there was a model from a little-known company called “vivo” that was even thinner.
Still, the P6 was striking, it measured only 6.19mm. And this was before camera humps were the norm, so that’s as thick as the phone got. Its aluminum frame made it sturdy despite its slender build and we liked the brushed metal finish on the back.
Huawei Ascend P6 next to an iPhone 5
The phone was so thin that even the 3.5mm headphone jack (which was on the bottom left side) seemed like a large opening. Huawei did something clever here – it plugged the jack with the SIM ejector tool to keep dust out. The issue was you needed to be careful not to lose the ejector when you take it out connect a pair of headphones, but if you did that often you could always just leave the ejector at home.
The 3.5mm audio jack was plugged with the SIM ejector tool
The slim body meant that there wasn’t much room for the battery, but the 2,000mAh power cell did quite okay, delivering a 46h Endurance rating (just a couple of hours short of what the HTC One managed, for example).
In some ways the Huawei Acend P6 was a year late. The 4.7″ IPS LCD was bright, had great contrast and viewing angles. Still, 720p was a 2012 resolution and we were living in 2013’s world of 1080p phones. Well, aside from the iPhone.
Huawei Ascend P6 4.7″ IPS+ display
In other ways, it was ahead of the pack. Above that screen was a 5MP selfie camera, which was a big deal at the time. The Galaxy S4, HTC One, LG G2, Xperia Z1 and others had 2MP snappers.
The 8MP camera on the back produced photos with excellent levels of detail with nice colors and reliable auto-exposure. The autofocus was a bit wonky, but overall it was a good camera. Of course, this was before Huawei’s partnership with Leica, that started with the Huawei P9.
An impressive 5MP selfie camera • 8MP camera on the back • A nice brushed metal texture
The phone launched with Android 4.2 Jelly Bean styled with Emotion UI 1.6 (the original name of EMUI). It was still quite new, Huawei released v1.0 just months before, offering files on its website that users could download and install on the Ascend P1.
The Brain.fm app offers something a little different from the norm, generating a limitless playlist of algorithmically tuned sounds to boost productivity, to help you relax, or to get you to sleep more easily. You can pick from a variety of sounds and themes—natural, classical, cinematic and more—then set the time duration and hit the play button.
Diving into your favorite streaming app of choice is of course a good way to get your mind out of the confines of the same four walls, but how do you know what’s good? Enter JustWatch, which can tell you which streaming service you can find your favorite movie on, and lets you jump straight to the newest and most popular stuff too.
When it comes to video calling apps, you’ve got plenty to pick from, but Google Duo checks most boxes: It works on Android, iOS, and the web, and is free to use for video chats of up to eight people. You get a few cool filters and effects to play around with, and you can send recorded video messages to friends and family if a live video call isn’t possible.
Houseparty is also based around video chat, but in a less formal, more fun way—almost like a real houseparty. You can quickly see who’s around and who isn’t, and if you’re online then you can jump straight into calls and group chats with no waiting. Add in an engaging mix of games and diversions, and it’s easy to understand the app’s growing popularity.
You can use the Peloton app without a treadmill or bike—there are still plenty of live classes and on-demand routines available at a tap that you can do at home and in the park with just basic equipment. What’s more, in these coronavirus-affected times, Peloton has extended the free trial period to 90 days, so you can see whether the app works for you in the long run.
Aaptiv is another polished, high-quality personal training app you can use to guide your own routines at home. It’s not cheap, but you do get a wealth of audio-led workouts, covering running, strength training, flexibility, yoga, treadmill work, and more. The app is also really good at keeping a training diary and showing your progress over time.
Dropbox has been less alluring to some Mac users than iCloud in part because of its limited syncing. Where Apple’s service can sync your desktop and Documents folder, you’ve had to be content with syncing a special folder with Dropbox’s service. You might have reason to give it a second look in the near future, though. The 9to5Mac team has discovered that the latest Dropbox beta for Mac (sadly, not easy to grab) has the option of syncing your desktop, Documents and Downloads.
The move comes just weeks after Dropbox reworked its core sync engine to make it easier to maintain and improve reliability.
Like with iCloud, this only really makes sense if you subscribe to one of Dropbox’s paid tiers (2GB is woefully inadequate). Even so, it could be very helpful if you want cloud storage that serves more as a seamless backup for common files than a place to upload specific files.
Africa is two to three weeks away from the worst of the coronavirus storm and needs an emergency economic stimulus of US$100-billion (R1.8-trillion) to bolster preventative measures and support its fragile healthcare systems, according to the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa.
Almost half of the funds could come from waiving interest payments to multilateral institutions. That would give countries the fiscal space needed to impose social-distancing measures, widen social safety nets and equip hospitals to treat the sick ahead of an expected surge in infections, UNECA executive secretary Vera Songwe said by phone from Washington.
“If we want to have a fighting chance, we need it immediately,” she said. “In the next two to three weeks, if we act really decisively, we may be able to flatten the curve and then when the storm comes it will be not be as brutal as we see in Europe.”
If there is one African country or one country anywhere in the world that still has the coronavirus, the whole world has it
One measure that can provide some immediate relief is the creation of the special purpose vehicle requested by African finance ministers through which interest payments on sovereign bonds could be sequestered and provide all countries on the continent, regardless of income level, with support, she said.
A lack of resources and staff means authorities must work fast to limit the spread of the disease on a continent where hospitals have an average of just 1.8 beds per thousand people, UNECA data show. While Africa accounts for 1% of global health expenditure, it carries 23% of the disease burden, including hundreds of thousands of deaths each year from malaria, HIV/Aids and tuberculosis.
“Our hospital systems are so weak and so stressed already that another stress on them is going to break them,” Songwe said.
3 000 infections
There are more than 3 000 Covid-19 infections in 46 countries across the continent, according to the Addis Ababa-based Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.
The continent has never experienced a crisis of the scale and magnitude caused by the coronavirus pandemic, Songwe said. While its impact is likely to be felt for 12-18 months — with a loss of lives, jobs and businesses as economies grind to a halt — the potential loss of health-care providers and schooling would also weigh on the continent’s health and education sectors for years to come, she said.
A coordinated global effort is required to assist countries and businesses, and support the recovery of economies across the world, she said.
“If there is one African country or one country anywhere in the world that still has the coronavirus, the whole world has it. We’ve seen the speed of contamination and how quickly it can re-spread,” Songwe said. — Reported by Prinesha Naidoo, (c) 2020 Bloomberg LP
South Africa may approach the International Monetary Fund for the first time ever to help with funding to deal with the fallout from the coronavirus outbreak, the Sunday Times reported, citing finance minister Tito Mboweni.
While the minister isn’t currently considering an emergency budget, he also advocates asking the World Bank for assistance, the newspaper said.
“In a conversation with the Reserve Bank and the treasury, I indicated that we should proceed and speak to the IMF and the World Bank about any facility that we can access for health purposes,” he said, according to the newspaper. “We take no ideological position.” — Reported by Antony Sguazzin, (c) 2020 Bloomberg LP
Telecommunications operators and Internet service providers are working to find alternative routes after another break in the West African Cable System (Wacs) — the third this year — threatens to slow down Internet access in South Africa.
The cause of the cable break, which took place between the UK and Portugal in the early hours of Saturday morning South African time, is not yet known. India’s Tata Communications is responsible for the section that is broken and must now begin the process of sending out a team to effect repairs.
In the interim, other undersea cable operators are making plans to carry the traffic along diverse routes to minimise the impact of the break.
The services that Angola Cables provides to its customers remain operational across the 11 Wacs cable contact points
Angola Cables, a member of the Wacs consortium, is, for example, providing alternative routing on the South Atlantic Cable System (Sacs), a new system that connects Angola and Brazil, with an onward connectivity to the US.
“The services that Angola Cables provides to its customers remain operational across the 11 Wacs cable contact points on the west coast of Africa,” the company said.
“Data connections and access to global content and services continue to be provided given the robustness and redundancy of the Angola Cables network. As a top priority, Angola Cables and the consortium of Wacs partners are working to restore the cable’s full capacity to impacted customers as soon as possible.”
Seacom working normally
Meanwhile, Seacom, which operates a cable system along the east coast between South Africa and Europe and South Africa and India, said that while the repairs on the Wacs system are being planned, many Internet service providers will need to reroute their traffic.
“As a result of the Wacs cable system issues, customers may experience increased latency (network round-trip times) as alternative routes are implemented,” Seacom said.
“Seacom is aware that due to issues on the Wacs cable system on Africa’s west coast, many African ISPs and their customers could be experiencing unstable or slower speeds when using the Internet,” it said.
“Seacom’s network platform is also affected by the Wacs issues, but as the Seacom cable system on Africa’s east coast is continuing to work normally, we will endeavour to provide ISPs that rely heavily on Wacs with diverse capacity.”
Pan-African operator Liquid Telecom said it has access to five cable systems providing international Internet connectivity in South Africa.
“The loss of the Wacs capacity is unfortunate, especially when demand has increased so significantly (due to the work-from-home rules associated with South Africa’s Covid-19 lockdown). In our network, due to our resilient architecture, the loss of the Wacs capacity does not impact our ability to service our customers’ Internet demand.”
Due to our resilient architecture, the loss of the Wacs capacity does not impact our ability to service our customers’ Internet demand
Liquid Telecom said its traffic is automatically rerouted when such outages occur.
“While we continue to monitor the situation, we do
It’s that time of the year again – Huawei is pushing mobile photography forward with the launch of its new Leica-equipped P40 family of phones. The company even unveiled its own voice assistant, video chat and Cast protocol, but the question remains – would you buy these phones and leave the Google ecosystem behind?
Huawei P40 • Huawei P40 Pro • Huawei P40 Pro+
First, let’s consider why it’s so tempting to do so. The Huawei P40 Pro brings the brand’s first high refresh rate display (90Hz) and reworks the complicated hardware above the screen – the IR face scanner, ToF and gesture sensor are still on board, but they now live in a pill-shaped punch hole that’s way smaller than the Mate 20 Pro notch. The addition of autofocus to the 32MP front camera does much to improve selfies.
However, the best cameras are on the back. The 50MP 1/1.28″ sensor is the largest of any modern smartphone and has upgraded phase detection. The 5x telephoto periscope cam (125mm) has a higher resolution sensor than the P30 Pro, 12MP. Huawei did much to improve its ultra wide Cine camera too – more details in our full review of the Pro model.
The Huawei P40 costs €800, saving you €200 compared to the Pro. But is it worth it? You lose the 90Hz refresh rate, the charging is parred back too – 22.5W wired (down from 40W on the Pro) and no wireless (unless you buy a case). Oh, and no IP68 water proofing on this one.
And while the main camera on the back uses the exact same 50MP sensor, the telephoto cam is fairly standard with 3x magnification (80mm) and 8MP sensor, same for the 16MP ultrawide cam. You can read our thoughts on the P40 in our hands-on review.
The Huawei P40 Pro+ is the ultimate flagship. It’s the first to introduce 40W wireless charging, as powerful as its wired charging. Even reverse wireless charging is insanely quick at 27W. This phone is water proof too and Huawei built it out of ceramics, which are as durable as sapphire (says the company).
Better yet, Huawei reworked the periscope to nearly double the focal length – 240mm gives you about 10x magnification. Better still, there’s a second zoom cam with a traditional 80mm lens (3x), so that the jump between wide and tele isn’t so jarring.
The plus model comes with 512GB of storage, which is plenty. The other two have 128GB (P40) and 256GB (P40 Pro), which some might find limiting. They will have to get a NanoMemory card to expand the storage, which isn’t ideal (at least they can still use dual SIM functionality as the phones have eSIM built in).
The Pro+ price tag is pretty spicy, however, €1,400. And it will only be available in June. Is it worth the wait? Is it worth it at all, when some apps just won’t work?
Launched in November 2014, Cape Town-based Disrupt Africa is a one-stop-shop for all news, information and commentary pertaining to the continent’s tech startup – and investment – ecosystem. The company’s Research arm also releases in-depth reports on various aspects of the African tech startup ecosystem, from funding to fintech.
While undertaking this vital and detailed work over the last six years, the Disrupt Africa team has built up a vast database of African tech startups, a contact list that spans the continent, and deep expertise across a number of markets and verticals.
Having worked with dozens of corporate entities, investors and accelerators in various ways in the past to help them source startups for various initiatives, the company is now packaging this offering and making it available more widely via its new service – Disrupt Pipeline.
Through Disrupt Pipeline, customers will be able to enlist the help of the Disrupt Africa team to connect with relevant startups. Be it corporates looking for tech solutions to business challenges, investors seeking to widen their portfolios, or accelerators looking for applications to their programmes, Disrupt Pipeline provides access to the most innovative companies on the continent.
Combining the Disrupt Africa database with the team’s expertise and knowledge of the continent’s startup ecosystems, customers will be provided with recommendations and connections to suggested startups and entrepreneurs for their initiatives, as per their requirements. This service can also be combined with advertising campaigns via the Disrupt Africa platform to widen the net where necessary.
“We have worked with a host of different entities in all manner of ways over the last few years, connecting them with relevant startups and entrepreneurs, and been receiving more and more requests for such services. All the launch of Pipeline does is formalise this offering and make it available to all,” said Disrupt Africa co-founder Tom Jackson.
“Through Pipeline, we hope to offer an additional, very personalised service to our customers looking to connect with African startups within strict parameters. Given the wide pool of contacts we have within the startup world, we’re keen to take a more hands-on role in making the right connections, strong partnerships and great investments happen,” said Gabriella Mulligan, co-founder of Disrupt Africa.
At the same time, Disrupt Africa is reformatting its Research division to allow it to offer bespoke research and data to clients on a project basis. Launched in 2016, the company’s Research arm has released a number of detailed reports on the continent’s growing tech startup ecosystem, including the annual African Tech Startups Funding Report and the biennial Finnovating for Africa.
Companies, organisations or governments will now have the opportunity to commission bespoke research reports from the Disrupt Africa team, opening up the company’s database and expertise to external clients.
The most common reason to pick it over the Redmi Note 9 Pro seems to be the camera, though many appreciate the faster charging as well. The small price difference between the two models may have condemned the 9 Pro to be a distant second best to the 9 Pro Max.
Just over a fifth of voters are not happy with either Redmi Note 9 Pro option, usually because there’s no high refresh rate screen. Many wished for a telephoto camera instead of the depth sensor (though some bokeh fans did come to its defense).
A lot happened since the poll was published just last week. The Indian release of the Redmi Note 9 Pro Max was delayed, the Redmi Note 9 Pro proceeded as planned. However, the phone is now out of stock on Mi.com, Flipkart and Amazon, so if you missed the initial sale you’re out of luck.
Meanwhile, the Redmi Note 9S, the global version of the Note 9 Pro, was unveiled with plans to sell globally through AliExpress and Gearbest as well as locally through retailers like Lazada and Shoppee in South East Asia. If all goes well, it will be available starting on April 7.
The next few months are going to be especially hard on business owners, many of whom are more or less helpless right now since they may not have a customer base to speak of — we’re all at home quarantining ourselves because of the continued spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.The current welcome bonus being offered to new signups from The Business Platinum Card® from American Express is 75,000 Membership Rewards points, just one of the many reasons this card remains one of the best for business owners that’s on the market right now.Visit BGR’s homepage for more stories.
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Please note: the offers mentioned below are subject to change at any time and some may no longer be available.
One of the best business credit cards on the market is The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, thanks largely to its unparalleled premium benefits. This card is an excellent fit for business owners, especially those who frequently travel and charge thousands of dollars in monthly expenses to their cards. Even better, the card sits on your business credit line instead of your personal credit report and gives you substantial purchasing power.
If you’ve been considering whether to add a new business card to your wallet, it’s worth giving the Amex Business Platinum some consideration right now, which would allow you to take advantage of a welcome bonus that includes 75,000 Membership Rewards points.
To get the entire bonus, your business will have to put a large amount of spending on the card in a short period of time. That requires spending $15,000 within three months of account opening — which might sound like a lot, but this is a business card, remember, and it’s entirely feasible for a small business to have that or much more in expenses over the course of three months.
There’s also a sweetener: That spending requirement has been reduced by $5,000 from the previous spending requirement, so the bonus is now more attainable than before.
Besides the bonus, meanwhile, there are plenty of additional perks that make this card worth of consideration. The Business Platinum also offers access to many of the same popular perks as the personal version, with both cards including such benefits as:
1.5x points on purchases of $5,000 or more (up to 1,000,000 additional points per year) A 35% rebate when you Pay With Points for a first or business class ticket on any airline, or an economy ticket on one airline of
Russia tends to turn a blind eye to some fraudsters and hackers, but it just clamped down on a particularly large group. Investigators have charged at least 25 people involved in a credit card fraud ring that included a notorious hacker. While Russian authorities didn’t provide a formal list of those caught in the bust, records and security blogger Andrey Sporov have revealed that one of those arrsted was Alexey Stroganov, also known as “Flint.” As a Krebs on Securitysource said, Stroganov apparently had a stake in “almost every major [card] hack” from the past 10 years, and sent “hundreds of millions of dollars” through the seized cryptocurrency exchange BTC-e.
Stroganov was caught back in 2006 and sentenced to six years in prison alongside his associate Gerasim Selivanov, but the two were set free after two years. Selivanov was also arrested as part of this week’s bust.
While it’s unclear why officials chose to act now, cybercrime discussion forum members believe Stroganov and
Realme 6i didn’t get to participate in the launch eventof the Realme 6 and Realme 6 Pro, but that has more to do with strategy than with its shortcomings as a phone. In India, where the event was held, the 6i will be called Realme Narzo 10 and will get its own announcement, once the COVID-19 lockdown is over. As luck would have it we got unit and as is the norm we will share some early impressions before we begin work on the full review. The Realme 6i’s predecessor – Realme 5i – is just three months old, but the rate at which Realme is evolving means we are still getting plenty of…
The FDA has scrambled to allow numerous COVID-19 tests in a bid to control the pandemic, but one of the latest may represent a big step forward in technology fighting the disease. Abbott has received emergency use authorization for a variant of its toaster-sized ID NOW lab-in-a-box that can provide positive results in as soon as five minutes, and all-clear results in 13 minutes. On top of this, it’s one of the few tests of its kind that can be used outside of a hospital, such as at a clinic.
The key is its use of molecular testing that looks for a small section of the SARS-CoV-2 virus’ RNA and amplifying that segment until there’s enough to detect. Other testing methods can take hours or days to produce viable results.
Abbott is in the midst of ramping up production and expects to deliver 50,000 of the tests per day in the US as of next week. However, one of its greatest advantages