Light Start: The coronavirus is taking over – here’s how tech is trying to mitigate it

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Microsoft’s Bing has launched a coronavirus tracker

The recent corona-pandemic has everyone on alert. It’s not every day we find ourselves literally in the midst of a Plague Inc game. The continuous spread has had an adverse effect on everything from schools, to universities and businesses. This weekend, Microsoft announced a new live dashboard tool that tracks the COVID-19 outbreak. “The company said it’s aggregating data for the dashboard from trusted sources like the World Health Organization (WHO), the World Health Organization (WHO), the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC),” TNW reports. It’s not like we haven’t seen a COVID-19 tracker since the outbreak, but this one is very mobile-friendly and seems to propagate with very recent data. If you tap on South Africa, it shows the latest numbers, including local news stories reporting on the outbreak. This is ideal if you’re keen to see live updates from the local government and authorities. Stay safe out there, kids. 

Even Instagram’s on the corona-train

It looks like the social platform that historically distances itself from current events, Instagram, is doing its part to fight misinformation. According to TechCrunch, Instagram will offer advice about the novel coronavirus and how to stay safe during the pandemic. A prompt will be placed at the top of your feed with a direct link to the World Health Organization (WHO) and local public health authorities. The message will read: message like this: “Help Prevent the Spread of Coronavirus: See the latest information from the World Health Organization so you can help prevent the spread of COVID-19. — Go to who.int,” according to TechCrunch. Insta also wants to curb fake news around the virus and will hide all coronavirus-related AR filters. Except if they were made by reputable authorities.So no face-mask filtered selfies? Ah, fine then. At the time of writing, we didn’t have the pop-up in SA yet. 

Sauce: TechCrunch

Google is developing a coronavirus website, but not like Trump’s

Pres Trump held a COVID-19 press conference, where he pitched Google’s plans to design a site dedicated to the virus and educating humans. This site would be a place where people could visit to have questions answered and be directed to testing centers. There was some confusion when the media said it was actually a life-sciences sister site, Verily, that was developing it. But on Saturday night, Google confirmed it was, in fact, creating this site. In a series of tweets, Google announced it “is partnering with the U.S. government in developing a nationwide website that includes information about COVID-19 symptoms, risk, and testing information.” The site is in addition to what Verily is doing, which is much more limited — and is only open to people in the San Francisco Bay area who want to do risk assessments and get scheduled for testing. Google said it was “fully aligned and continue to work with the U.S. government to contain the spread of COVID-19, inform citizens, and protect” the public’s health. 

Sauce: Wired

Pres Ramaphosa debuts the new South African greeting

This weekend, South Africa President, Cyril Ramaphosa debuted the new local greeting to keep the corona at bay. Apparently we now need to greet each other with the elbow. Here at Stuff, we’ve resorted to using the ‘live long and prosper’ hand sign. Jokes aside, though, the President announced a national state of disaster, and continued by putting a few measures in place to mitigate the spread of this new virus. As of now, South Africa has 61 confirmed cases of people infected with the virus, and this number is expected to rise in the coming days and weeks. From your buds at Stuff, we recommend working from home, getting some and sanitiser and surgical spirits, and refrain from touching other humans. Keep your tech clean and don’t lend out your PlayStation games. Pick up a Stuff Magazine, pr if you’re not ready to go outside, you can buy single copies from our website here

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Deputy Editor at Stuff. Nevermind the fancy title, I like writing about things that are cool. Like games, gadgets and sometimes even software. Depending on how cool it is.

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