Weekly Update – June 24th 2021

Is there a perfect number of hours to work each day? Research shows that five hours seems to be the maximum that people can focus and be creative. The constraint of a shorter workday can also increase productivity as people are forced to find ways to get their work done in less time. While a shorter workday gives people more time for other pursuits, it also has several downsides. People have…  Read more

Weekly Update – June 2nd 2021

How will the COVID-19 pandemic end? Scientists who study global pandemics of the past observe that previous pandemics have subsided over time, generally in 18 months or so. The virus itself seems to become less deadly, and becomes more of an endemic seasonal illness. At the same time, our immune systems become better able to fight them off. At least that has been the pattern in the past. It is…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – March 10th 2021

Today could be the day! Congress is expected to vote on the 1.9 trillion Covid-19 relief bill today, Wednesday March 10th, just before the expanded unemployment insurance benefits end.  As per the Associated Press morning wire : A dominant feature of the bill is initiatives making it one of the biggest federal thrusts in years to assist lower- and middle-income families. Included are expanded tax credits over the next year for children,…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – March 3rd 2021

Congratulations! You got the COVID vaccine! I have an appointment for my first shot for this afternoon due to an underlying condition.  Now what should you/we do?  As an article in The Atlantic describes, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution, but “When deciding what you can and can’t do, you should think less about your own vaccination status, and more about whether your neighbors, family, grocery clerks, delivery drivers, and friends are…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – February 3rd 2021

Keeping people safe in the pandemic requires a comprehensive approach, as explained by Aaron E. Carroll, a pediatrics professor at Indiana University. By taking the pandemic seriously, “far from posing a risk to its host city or town, a university could become—by supplementing behavioral measures such as masking and social distancing with widespread surveillance testing—a model for detecting and suppressing the virus.” By the time IU’s 87,000 students return to…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – January 27th 2021

For many of us, it was our networks that helped us get through the last year. That was one of the lessons that Ivan Meisner, founder of BNI, an international business networking group learned from 2020. He also learned the value of limiting exposure to bad news by picking up what he needed to know from news apps. One business owner struggled with the stress of working from home while overseeing remote…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – January 20th 2021; Looking Forward to Another Historic Inauguration Day!

Vaccines for the coronavirus are now being administered around the country, but that may not mean an end to wearing a mask. This article from Kaiser Health News lists five reasons to keep wearing a mask, even after receiving the vaccine. The top two reasons are that no vaccine is 100% effective and that vaccines don’t provide immediate protection. According to one of the experts cited the best way to end the…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – January 13th 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic may have an economic impact far beyond last year and the next two or three. A recent report by the World Bank projects global economic growth to slow to 1.9% per year from 2020-2029. Prior to the pandemic, growth was projected to be 2.1%, down from 2.5% over the previous decade. Investments in infrastructure, diversifying economies and supporting the employment of women may help to mitigate or reverse that…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – January 7th 2021 and Welcome to 2021!

Happy New Year! Without computer, telecommunication, and cloud technologies, working from home during the pandemic would not have been possible. Looking back at 2020, Gene Marks a contributor at Forbes, put together a list of the 13 tech stories from 2020 that stand out for small business. For example, a Microsoft engineer who exploited a loophole to steal more than $10 million from the company’s online store underlines the need…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – December 31st 2020

With votes counted and the Covid-19 Relief bill now signed into law the fun begins.  I am hoping you have something safe, but special planned for this evening and the rest of this three day weekend, and will not have time to re-read our post from last week detailing all of the provisions but please feel free to click through here for our December 23rd post which has been updated.…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – December 23rd 2020

Hoping that you are busy, making holiday plans, while scanning the news about the COVID-19 Relief Bill we’re keeping this issue extra short. Just in time for Christmas, Jupiter and Saturn appear in close alignment this week, forming what some have called a ‘Christmas Star.’ The last time this happened was in the spring of 1226, when Notre Dame cathedral was under construction. Their closest connection will be on the Winter’s…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – December 16th 2020

To say that 2020 has been a wild ride is an understatement. This article in the Wall Street Journal takes a look at surveys, economic data, and research papers to get an idea of what’s changed and what might be coming our way. The pandemic forced many of us to work from home, and that trend may be here to stay. But the increase in productivity came at a cost:…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – December 9th 2020

States that depend heavily on tourism have suffered greatly during the pandemic, and a few are taking creative steps to diversify their economies by attracting new remote workers. For example, Hawaii’s new “Movers and Shakas” program offers free roundtrip airfare to remote workers willing to spend at least 30 days working in that state and to contribute in some way to the local community. Tulsa is offering grants of $10,000…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – December 2nd 2020

After months of only bad news about the spread of COVID-19, recent announcements of successful trials of three different vaccines bring a sense of optimism that the return to “normal” is on the way. Pfizer was first, and chartered flights bringing the vaccine to the U.S. from Belgium began on November 27. By mid-December, people may begin receiving that vaccine. A vaccine by Moderna has also completed trials and that…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – November 25th 2020 & Wishing You a Safe Happy Thanksgiving

One of the positive side effects of the pandemic has been reduced traffic on interstate highways. A group of amateur race car drivers decided to take advantage of the empty roads to revive the “Cannonball Run,” a highly illegal endurance race from Manhattan to Los Angeles. The object of this race is to make the run faster than anyone else. Teams plan for months, fine-tuning routes to consider traffic light…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – November 4th 2020

When the novel coronavirus hit last winter, doctors were unsure of the most effective treatments. But as the pandemic has continued, doctors are learning, as the fatality rate continues to drop, the best way to survive COVID-19 seems to be to delay catching it, as this article in The Atlantic describes. According to a study cited in the article, the fatality rate in New York City was 25.6% back in…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – October 28th 2020

All around the world, pandemic fatigue is setting in, as the need for social contact outweighs the commitment to following restrictive rules. Unfortunately, this is coinciding with a surge in infection rates in the U.S. and Europe. Asian countries, on the other hand, are managing to return to mostly normal. New infections in China, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, and Hong Kong, combined, have been around 1,000 per day, while here…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – October 21st 2020

Lately, economists have been talking about a “K-shaped” recovery from the current recession. As this article in The Conversation explains, this kind of recovery happens when different parts of the economy recover at different rates. White-collar workers who can more easily work remotely may have an easier and faster path to recovery than blue-collar and service workers who must be physically present to do their jobs. Moving forward is the…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – October 14th 2020

Prior to COVID-19, models of what could happen during a pandemic overstated the possible global death toll, but understated the potential hit to GDP. But as a series in The Economist explains, our current pandemic may have lasting impact. The impacts of shutting down schools for months at a time may persist for decades. Governments around the world are issuing debt at levels never before seen to finance support for…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – October 7th 2020

Fall is here, and with it, the beautiful colors of the season. Hikes and drives to see the colors are still something we can do, despite COVID-19, as this guide in the New York Times reminds us, with pictures and suggestions across the country. The Berkshires in Massachusetts, Ohio’s Cuyahoga Valley National Park, West Virginia’s Spruce Knob, Maine’s Grafton Notch, Percy Warner Park and Radnor Lake near Nashville, and Guanella…  Read more

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