Every day, the same, again

neck.jpgGrey parrot tops Harvard students on a test

Security researchers say a smartwatch, popular with the elderly and dementia patients, could have been tricked into letting an attacker easily take control of the device. Hackers could trick the smartwatch into sending fake “take pills” reminders to patients as often as they want

Cosmetic surgeons see rise in patients amid pandemic

New Hong Kong legislation puts foreign citizens who criticize the Chinese government anywhere in the world at risk of jail if they even set foot in the city — even if they are just transiting through the airport.

Luckin Coffee was supposed to disrupt China’s coffee market. But a Wall Street Journal investigation has found that the company used fake coffee orders, fake supply orders and even a fake employee to fabricate nearly half its sales last year.

Warning of serious brain disorders in people with mild coronavirus symptoms

University of Oxford researchers found the proportion of coronavirus patients dying each day in England fell from 6% to 1.5% between April and June.

Spain’s large-scale study on the coronavirus indicates just 5% of its population has developed antibodies, strengthening evidence that a so-called herd immunity to Covid-19 is “unachievable” […] There have been similar studies in China and the United States and “the key finding from these representative cohorts is that most of the population appears to have remained unexposed” to Covid-19, “even in areas with widespread virus circulation” […] “Some experts have computed that around 60% of seroprevalence might mean herd immunity. But we are very far from achieving that number.” [CNN]

A big question is whether somebody who has had COVID-19 is now immune from getting it again. So far we don’t see compelling evidence of people getting reinfected, but that’s still a bit early to say for sure. That’s going to make a huge difference in everything we try to do about this going forward. A vaccine, of course, depends upon the idea that immunity is protective. […] There are a couple factors that will relate to whether immunity lasts a long time. One is whether the antibodies that somebody generates after infection are around for years afterward or whether they fade away. There hasn’t been enough time yet to be able to say that. The other is whether the virus itself changes its biology and then evades the immune response that people have had. Obviously that’s a big deal with influenza, which is why we have to get a flu shot every year. And it’s been a horrible deal with HIV — and why we’ve never been able to get a vaccine for it, because HIV is changing its coat almost hourly. I think we have reason to be much more optimistic about SARS-CoV-2 [the virus that causes COVID-19]. There doesn’t seem to be compelling evidence of it being that highly mutable. It’s a typical RNA virus that seems to have a typical mutation rate. It doesn’t look like it’s doing a lot of changing of its coat proteins. So I’m fairly reassured by what we’ve learned so far, after looking at the viral genome of thousands of isolates, that this one is not changing that rapidly. […] I am guardedly optimistic that by the end of 2020 we will have at least one vaccine that has been proven safe and effective in a large-scale trial. […] There are at least four vaccines that will be getting into such large trials this summer beginning as early as July. […] Maybe all four of them will work. […] there will be, then, a time of having to do the scale-up to have billions of doses, which might be what the world needs. So there will still be some time involved, even though we are doing everything possible to prepare for that by manufacturing millions of doses of each of those vaccines even before we know if they would work, so that the highest-risk people can get access right away. [NY mag]

FBI agents raided a home in northern Michigan this week while investigating a sophisticated art forgery ring that allegedly tricked connoisseurs into buying phony paintings purported to be from top American artists.

His name? The O-Man. His superpower? Making women come simply by assessing their posture.

the group purchased alien abduction insurance that would cover up to fifty members and would pay out $1 million per person (the policy covered abduction, impregnation, or death by aliens). More: We came from the Level Above Human in distant space and we have now exited the bodies that we were wearing for our earthly task

The Perfect Art Heist: Hack the Money, Leave the Painting More: Computer hackers take £2.4m from sale of Constable painting

“Boob chandelier”