Law and Legal
- “This map shows an estimated percentage of people with COVID-19 symptoms, not confirmed cases.
- Facebook uses aggregated public data from a survey conducted by Carnegie Mellon University Delphi Research Center.
- Facebook doesn’t receive, collect or store individual survey responses. This map is not intended for diagnostic or treatment purposes, or for guidance on any type of travel.
- This map shows an estimated percentage of people with COVID-19 symptoms, not confirmed cases. Facebook uses aggregated public data from a survey conducted by Carnegie Mellon University Delphi Research Center. Facebook doesn’t receive, collect or store individual survey responses. This map is not intended for diagnostic or treatment purposes, or for guidance on any type of travel…”
iFixit: “Isopropyl alcohol is having a moment. Not an uplifting celebration, unfortunately. It’s more of a panicked where-can-I-find-it, is-this-the-same-stuff moment. Isopropyl alcohol is a disinfectant at its higher percentages, and you can use it to make homemade hand sanitizer. As such, there’s a shortage, and recent prices are triple what they were a month ago. Given the trickier supply and uncertainty, we want to help where we can. We know, rely on, and recommend isopropyl alcohol (a.k.a. isopropanol, or IPA) for many of our techniques and guides. It’s pretty simple stuff, but it is sold in different ways, and recommended for a myriad of uses. Understandably, people have questions. Is “rubbing alcohol” or “surgical spirit” the same thing? What percentage of isopropyl do I need for electronics work or disinfecting? Can I use anything else on my electronics? And, hey, is this stuff going to catch on fire if I cause a spark? Let’s clean up these questions…”
“The Pitt Rivers Museum is a museum displaying the archaeological and anthropological collections of the University of Oxford in England. The museum is located to the east of the Oxford University Museum of Natural History, and can only be accessed through that building – established in 1884.” Please see this link for an online Matterport 3D Showcase of this magnificent museum.
Center for Data Innovation: “Reuters has created a series of data visualizations using location data from millions of smartphones to show how social distancing efforts have affected travel in the United States. The visualizations show that most individuals in cities such as New York, Chicago, and Denver had stopped commuting by March 20. In addition, an interactive graph demonstrates that individuals that are older and live in rural areas were slower to reduce their travel, but that most individuals are traveling dramatically less than in February.”
Via LLRX – Staying Together While Working Apart – There is a great deal that newly remote teams can learn from teams that have worked remotely for several years. Nancy Dixon’s recommendations on how to stay connected is a resource for managers, staff and teams, and focuses on social and professional aspects of maintaining effective and positive work product now and into the future.
Via LLRX – 7 Tips for Using Zoom on an iPad or iPhone – You will want to widely share Brett Burney’s quick guide to using Zoom on your iPhone or iPad. In the past month most if not all of us have been on Zoom meetings that include a lot of background noise that results in one or more people chiming in with the mantra – “mute your phone please!” Brett also points us to the important Safe Driving Mode.
Via LLRX – Pete Recommends Weekly highlights on cyber security issues April 18, 2020 – Privacy and security issues impact every aspect of our lives – home, work, travel, education, health and medical records – to name but a few. On a weekly basis Pete Weiss highlights articles and information that focus on the increasingly complex and wide ranging ways technology is used to compromise and diminish our privacy and security, often without our situational awareness. Four highlights from this week: Half of Americans decided not to use something over privacy concerns in past year; How much access to data should be permitted during the COVID-19 pandemic?; Sharing Senior Photos On Social Media Enables Data Mining, Better Business Bureau Warns; and Apple, Google to harness phones for virus infection tracking.
“As the coronavirus pandemic spreads and courts around the world are closing, this website is designed to help the global community of justice workers – judges, lawyers, court officials, litigants, court technologists – to share their experiences of ‘remote’ alternatives to traditional court hearings. To ensure ongoing access to justice, governments and judiciaries are rapidly introducing various forms of ‘remote court’ – audio hearings (largely by telephone), video hearings (for example, by Skype and Zoom), and paper hearings (decisions delivered on the basis of paper submissions). At remarkable speed, new methods and techniques are being developed. However, there is a danger that the wheel is being reinvented and that there is unnecessary duplication of effort across the world. In response, this site offers a systematic way of remote-court innovators and people who work in the justice system to exchange news of operational systems, as well as of plans, ideas, policies, protocols, techniques, and safeguards. By using this site, justice workers can learn from one another’s successes and disappointments. Please do contribute. The idea is that this site is a repository to which users regularly send their news. The structure and scope of the site will evolve over time, as we come to have a better understanding of what is most useful. Feedback would be warmly welcome.
The service is a joint effort – hosted by the Society for Computers and Law, funded by the UK LawTech Delivery Panel, and supported by Her Majesty’s Courts & Tribunals Service. It also builds on the community that was established at the First International Forum on Online Courts, held in London in December 2018, when 300 people from 26 countries came together to talk about using technology to transform the work of courts. None of us imagined then that we would need to change so quickly. But we must seize the moment and come together to accelerate the development of new ways of continuing to deliver just outcomes for court users…”
Welcome to Stanford Law School’s COVID-19 Memo Database, developed and maintained by the Rock Center for Corporate Governance at Stanford University and Cornerstone Research. “The COVID-19 crisis has generated a complex web of legal, business, and operational challenges that affect the entire economy. Law firms, auditors, and business advisors have responded with thousands of memoranda addressing a broad range of topics spanning areas as diverse as tax, antitrust, employment, and contract law. The COVID-19 Memo Database aggregates 4,075 memoranda in a searchable format designed to help users quickly identify relevant information. These memoranda were generated by leading U.S. law firms, the four major audit firms, and a leading insurance broker. For a more detailed description of the criteria used for inclusion in the database, please see the explanatory note below.
- Resources – The site provides two resources: COVID-19 Firm Resources Database – The COVID-19 Firm Resources webpage lists each firm in the database and identifies its dedicated COVID-19 coverage.
- COVID-19 Memo Database – The COVID-19 Memo Database is a searchable index of the COVID-19-related memorandum generated by each firm listed in the Resources Database. The memoranda titles are searchable, and the site directs the user to the originating firm’s website for full text of each memorandum. We’ve built this site quickly and efficiently so that it might be of most practical use to the legal and audit communities, as well as to judges, legislators, regulators, scholars, and journalists. We know that we can improve this site in many ways, and we invite any and all suggestions for how we might be of greater service in this difficult time. Please forward suggestions and comments to firstname.lastname@example.org…” [via Mary Whisner]
Virtual Conferences: A Guide to Best Practices – A community resource from the ACM [Association for Computing Machinery] Presidential Task Force on What Conferences Can Do to Replace Face-to-Face Meetings Version 1.1 — April 13, 2020
Abstract: “Our conference organizing committee just decided to switch our physical conference to online.But the conference is supposed to start in three weeks, and none of us have ever even been to a virtual conference, much less put one on! Where do we start??? ”This document is a practical guide to the brave new world of virtual scientific conferences, assembled and curated by members of the Association for Computing Machinery’s Presidential Task Force on What Conferences Can Do to Replace Face-to-Face Meetings. With so many conferences going online in a short time, there are many organizers with urgent questions; at the same time, new insights, ideas, and experiences are being generated at a furious rate. We hope that this guide will serve both as a basic orientation for newcomers and as a repository of accumulated knowledge from the community. As heavy users of online technologies and as researchers responsible for developing them, the ACM community is especially well-positioned to offer advice that we hope will be helpful to other groups dealing with the same problems…”
Zoom Blog: “Zoom leverages a robust global network to support our users no matter where they are located, natively routing traffic through the meeting zone that will provide you the best performance. Now, paid Zoom customers will be able to customize which data center regions their account can use for its real-time meeting traffic...Beginning April 18, every paid Zoom Meeting and Webinar customer can opt in or out of a specific data center region. This will determine the meeting servers and Zoom connectors that can be used to connect to Zoom meetings or webinars you are hosting and ensure the best-quality service.
- Starting April 18, with respect to data in transit, Zoom admins and account owners of paid accounts can, at the account, group, or user level:
- Opt out of specific data center regions
- Opt in to specific data center regions
- You will not be able to change or opt out of your default region, which will be locked. The default region is the region where a customer’s account is provisioned. For the majority of our customers, this is the United States. This feature gives our customers more control over their data and their interaction with our global network when using Zoom’s industry-leading video communication services…”
The New York Times – “Covid-19 cases continue to be confirmed. By following some basic steps, you can help reduce your risk and do your part to protect others. To help you navigate this highly fluid situation, The Times has compiled more than two dozen pieces of journalism in “Answers to Your Coronavirus Questions,” a free e-book. This book addresses what to do if you feel sick and are worried it may be the coronavirus, what scientists have learned about how the virus infects and attacks cells, how to talk to children and teens about the outbreak, what to do if you’re worried about the stock market and much more…”
The Verge: “Google searches for terms related to COVID-19 will now display information for more than 2,000 COVID-19 testing centers across 43 states in the US, the company tells The Verge. There are other changes, too. When you search for something related to COVID-19, you’ll now see a new “Testing” tab as part of the information shown in Google’s COVID-19 SOS alert. When you click or tap that Testing tab, you’ll see a number of resources regarding COVID-19 testing at the top of your search results. Those include: a link to the Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) online COVID-19 symptom checker, a suggestion to talk to a healthcare provider if you think you should be tested, a link to COVID-19 testing information from your local health authorities, and a note that you may need to call ahead to a testing center to make sure you can actually get a test…”
Gizmodo: “Although Instagram founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger left the photo sharing app they created in 2018, which is owned by Facebook, they apparently aren’t done working together. Their latest project is Rt.live, a state-by-state covid-19 infection tracker. The tracker calculates Rt, or the effective reproductive rate, which is the virus’ transmission rate a given time. In other words, the metric is the estimation of how many secondary infections are likely to develop because of a single infection in a specific area. If the number is above one, it means we should expect more cases in that area. On the flip side, if it’s below one, we should expect fewer cases. Rt.live takes this concept and puts it on a simple, but pretty, tracker (and we would expect nothing less from the founders of Instagram). The tracker shows you what the current effective reproductive rate (Rt) is in all states. Those that have an Rt below one are shown as little green dots, while those that have an Rt above one are shown in red. As of yesterday, April 18, only 15 states had an Rt below one. With 0.42, Connecticut had the lowest score. North Dakota, which has no shelter in place order, had the highest score with 1.7.//” [h/t Pete Weiss]
People financially affected by COVID-19 outbreak are experiencing more psychological distress than others
“Health experts are concerned about the potential mental health effects of the coronavirus outbreak in the United States, and mental health hotlines report a substantial uptick in calls since the outbreak began. Nearly one-in-five U.S. adults (18%) say they have had a physical reaction at least some or a little of the time when thinking about the outbreak, according to a new Pew Research Center survey conducted March 19-24. This is particularly true of those affected financially. When asked more broadly how they’ve felt in the past seven days, not in the context of the coronavirus outbreak, 18% report experiencing nervousness or anxiety most or all of the time during the past week. For context, a 2018 federal survey – which was not taken in the midst of a national crisis – found 9% of U.S. adults reported feeling nervous most or all of time over the past 30 days, indicating that the current level might be above normal…”
“USAspending.gov is the official source for spending data for the U.S. Government. Its mission is to show the American public what the federal government spends every year and how it spends the money. You can follow the money from the Congressional appropriations to the federal agencies and down to local communities and businesses…”
PHYS.org: “The Internet and social media are among the most frequently used sources of information today. Students, too, often prefer online information rather than traditional teaching materials provided by universities. According to a study conducted by Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) and Goethe University Frankfurt, students struggle to critically assess information from the Internet and are often influenced by unreliable sources. In this study, students from various disciplines such as medicine and economics took part in an online test, the Critical Online Reasoning Assessment (CORA). “Unfortunately, it is becoming evident that a large proportion of students are tempted to use irrelevant and unreliable information from the Internet when solving the CORA tasks,” reported Professor Olga Zlatkin-Troitschanskaia from JGU. The study was carried out as part of the Rhine-Main Universities (RMU) alliance…”
The New York Times – Preprint servers and peer-reviewed journals are seeing surging audiences, with many new readers not well versed in the limitations of the latest research findings. “Early on Feb. 1, John Inglis picked up his phone and checked Twitter, as he does most mornings. He was shocked at what fresh hell awaited. Since 2013, Dr. Inglis, executive director of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press in New York, has been helping manage a website called bioRxiv, pronounced “bio archive.” The site’s goal: improve communication between scientists by allowing them to share promising findings months before their research has gone through protracted peer review and official publication. But the mess he was seeing on Twitter suggested a downside of the service provided by the site, known as a preprint server, during the emerging coronavirus pandemic. The social media platform was awash with conspiracy theories positing that the new coronavirus had been engineered by the Chinese government for population control. And the theorists’ latest evidence was a freshly submitted paper on bioRxiv from a team of Indian researchers that suggested an “uncanny similarity” between proteins in H.I.V. and the new virus. Traditionally, the Indian researchers would have submitted a paper to a peer-reviewed journal, and their manuscript would be scrutinized by other scientists. But that process takes months, if not more than a year. BioRxiv, medRxiv — another site co-founded by Dr. Inglis — and other preprint servers function as temporary homes that freely disseminate new findings. For scientists on the front lines of the coronavirus response, early glimpses at others’ research helps with study of the virus. But there is a growing audience for these papers that are not yet fully baked, and those readers may not understand the studies’ limitations…”