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The CEO’s guide to safely reopening the workplace

Perhaps the single biggest implication of reopening national economies is that responsibility and thus liability for dealing with the covid-19 pandemic will shift from the public to the private sector. Fortune 500 CEOs right through to small business owners will soon be making decisions that affect not only the health of their business but also their people—employees, contractors, customers,...

Clear masks and captioning could help deaf people navigate the pandemic

About a month after shelter-in-place orders began in her area, Shaylee Mansfield—an 11-year-old deaf actress in Austin, Texas—posted a video on Twitter. For over 30 years, DHH people fought for captioning. More people r now relying on technology during coronavirus. Shaylee Mansfield, Deaf girl, had enough! She sends a loud message to @instagram to add #instacaptioning on their platform for...


WEDNESDAY 27. MAY 2020


Twitter fact-checks a Trump tweet for the first time

The news: Twitter added a fact checking label to two tweets from US President Donald Trump’s Twitter account on Tuesday. The tweets from @realDonaldTrump (the president’s popular personal account that also serves as his main social media presence) claimed that mail-in voting would be “substantially fraudulent” and lead to a “Rigged Election.”  It is the first time that Twitter has...


TUESDAY 26. MAY 2020


Older users share more misinformation. Your guess why might be wrong.

The news: Misinformation on social media is often fueled by older adults, who share fake news and dubious links more than other age groups—up to seven times more than their younger counterparts. But a new analysis suggests people often make incorrect assumptions about why this might be, which leads some attempts at halting the spread of misinformation to failure.  Ageist stereotypes: Nadia...

Radio Corona, May 27: what digital contact tracing means for privacy

This week on Radio Corona, join us for a discussion about digital contract tracing initiatives with Gideon Lichfield, our editor-in-chief, Danny Weitzner of MIT’s CSAIL, and Bobbie Johnson, a Tech Review Senior Editor. Bobbie is part of the team at TR that has been reporting on contact tracing apps around the world. Danny has been working on a privacy preserving protocol for these apps at...

Virgin Orbit’s rocket has failed on its first attempt to get into space

The news: Virgin Orbit failed in the first test of its LauncherOne rocket yesterday, after seven years of development and testing. The rocket was transported by a Boeing 747 and released over the Pacific Ocean, off the coast of California. It was supposed to fall for a few seconds, ignite, and then propel itself into low Earth orbit. Instead, it ignited and fell into the sea. The flight had been...

Here’s what we have to do to show a coronavirus vaccine works

The moonshot program to come up with a vaccine against covid-19 is advancing faster than anyone could have hoped. At least four experimental vaccines have been shown to protect monkeys, and three of those are already being given to brave human volunteers. The aim is a vaccine by January, and money is no object. On May 21, the US said it would throw $1.2 billion behind a vaccine from Oxford...

The global AI agenda: Europe

This report is part of “The global AI agenda,” a thought leadership program by MIT Technology Review Insights examining how organizations are using AI today and planning to do so in the future. Featuring a global survey of 1,004 AI experts conducted in January and February 2020, it explores AI adoption, leading use cases, benefits, and challenges, and seeks to understand how organizations...


MONDAY 25. MAY 2020


Robots could help save your local store from going out of business

In a warehouse in Secaucus, New Jersey, a handful of people stand around the base of a white box as big as a house. Every few seconds a plastic bin emerges from an opening in its sleek walls. Someone reaches in and grabs an item of lingerie or swimwear, and then the bin is gone again—whisked back inside the box to be restacked among 33,000 others arranged in row upon row of floor-to-ceiling...


SATURDAY 23. MAY 2020


This is SpaceX’s big chance to really make history

On Wednesday, May 27, at 4:33 p.m. US Eastern Time, NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley are scheduled to launch into orbit for a rendezvous with the International Space Station. This is standard stuff, except for three important facts: it will be the first time in almost nine years that American astronauts have flown to space from American soil; it will be the first time in history...


FRIDAY 22. MAY 2020


The antimalarial drug Trump took for covid might actually be dangerous

Chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine are two of the most hyped drugs being studied as treatments for covid-19, thanks in large part to President Donald Trump’s repeated promotion during his public appearances. Trump told reporters this week he had been taking hydroxychloroquine as a preventive measure. But a new study published Friday in The Lancet suggests not just that the drugs don’t offer...

Coronavirus grounded the autonomous-vehicle industry, but data troves could be a savior

Brandon Moak felt as if a freight train had hit him.  It was mid-March, and the cofounder and CTO of the autonomous- trucking startup Embark Trucks had been keeping tabs on the emergence of covid-19. As a shelter-in-place order went into effect throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, where Embark is based, Moak and his team were forced to ground almost all their 13 self-driving semi-trucks (a...

Prepare to be tracked and tested as you return to work

A day in the life of Salesforce workers will look very different when they return to the software company’s offices. The San Francisco–based business says all of its 49,000 employees can continue working from home for the rest of the year. But as regions relax stay-at-home rules and the company reopens in phases, employees who are cleared to return will start their day by...


THURSDAY 21. MAY 2020


Nearly half of Twitter accounts pushing to reopen America may be bots

Kathleen M. Carley and her team at Carnegie Mellon University’s Center for Informed Democracy & Social Cybersecurity have been tracking bots and influence campaigns for a long time. Across US and foreign elections, natural disasters, and other politicized events, the level of bot involvement is normally between 10 and 20%, she says. But in a new study, the researchers have found that bots...


WEDNESDAY 20. MAY 2020


More vaccines have protected monkeys against covid-19, suggesting they might work in people

Studies on macaques suggest that infection with the coronavirus grants some immunity to catching it again—and that vaccines also seem to offer some protection. The questions: Does getting infected by the coronavirus make you immune? And can a vaccine do the same job? In two studies published today in Science, a group led by researchers at Harvard University’s Beth Israel Deaconess...

Apple and Google’s covid-tracing tech has been released to 22 countries

Apple and Google are releasing their much-anticipated “exposure notification” technology to help global health authorities track the coronavirus pandemic. Governments around the world can now use the technology in their own contact tracing apps, subject to approval by the two tech giants.  Contact tracing—tracking down those who may have been exposed to an infectious person—is an...

This could be the first direct evidence of a planet being born

The news: Astronomers have made what are possibly the first ever observations of a planet in the process of being born. The newly-released images are of a very young star system called AB Aurigae, about 520 light-years away. They feature a massive disc of swirling gas and dust. The disc features a prominent twist that could indicate where a new planet is being born. The findings were reported...

The race is on for a covid-19 test you can take at home

You are feeling feverish and have a cough. Is it just a cold, or is it covid-19? That’s a question that’s going to be hanging over all of us, possibly for several years. Right now, getting tested for the coronavirus means going to a doctor or a drive-in clinic and potentially exposing other people, and even then, a test can be hard to obtain. The US Centers for Disease Control is still...

How to stay sane when the world’s going mad

Take a deep breath. Now, tell me … how are you feeling? There are no wrong answers, and no one else needs to know. Give your day a score out of 10 if you can’t think of the right words. Even better, write it down. Set a reminder to write down how you’re feeling every day. Now you’ve started a mood diary. These sorts of techniques are usually reserved for the therapist’s chair. But...

Public policies in the age of digital disruption

We are witnessing a new wave of technological progress with enormous potential to profoundly transform our societies. Together with globalization, climate change, demographic transformations, and the risk of pandemics such as covid-19, digital disruption is generating far-reaching changes in the global economy. Economic growth is almost exclusively a feature of industrial revolutions and is...


TUESDAY 19. MAY 2020


The possibilities of now

With the latest technology and smartest talent, the possibilities are endless. Explore the ways technology and people are bridging gaps and creating new opportunities and resiliencies now through advancements in AI, automation, organizational transformation, and more. Visit the Hub.

A new $12 billion US chip plant sounds like a win for Trump. Not quite.

On Friday, May 15, the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), the world’s largest contract chipmaker, announced that it will build a $12 billion plant in Arizona, to open by 2024. It expects the facility to employ roughly 1,600 people and indirectly generate thousands of other jobs. At first blush, the announcement looks like a victory for the Trump administration, which has been...

Here’s how we could mine the moon for rocket fuel

The moon is a treasure trove of valuable resources. Gold, platinum, and many rare Earth metals await extraction to be used in next-generation electronics. Non-radioactive helium-3 could one day power nuclear fusion reactors. But there’s one resource in particular that has excited scientists, rocket engineers, space agency officials, industry entrepreneurs—virtually anyone with a vested...