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Techlife News

Techlife News #492

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Read the most relevant news of the week about the world of technology and its influence on our lives. New products, Apps, acquisitions in the industry, highlights about the digital world and everything about your favorite iGadgets and upgrades. Everything you need to keep well informed. A new concept of light, intelligent, innovative reading at your fingertips. A global view of Tech LifeStyle and its influence on our lives.

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Country:
United States
Language:
English
Publisher:
Ivan Castilho de Almeida
Frequency:
Weekly
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52 Issues

in this issue

3 min.
microsoft wins $22 billion deal making headsets for us army

Microsoft won a nearly $22 billion contract to supply U.S. Army combat troops with its augmented reality headsets. Microsoft and the Army separately announced the deal this week. The technology is based on Microsoft’s HoloLens headsets, which were originally intended for the video game and entertainment industries. Pentagon officials have described the futuristic technology — which the Army calls its Integrated Visual Augmentation System — as a way of boosting soldiers’ awareness of their surroundings and their ability to spot targets and dangers. Microsoft’s head-mounted HoloLens displays let people see virtual imagery superimposed over the physical world in front of them — anything from holograms in virtual game worlds to repair instructions floating over a broken gadget. The Army’s website says soldiers tested the gadgets last year at Fort Pickett in Virginia. It said the…

2 min.
animation company got $49m in excessive tax credits

Blue Sky Studios, the company behind “Ice Age” and other animated films, received $49 million more in Connecticut state tax credits than it should have, state auditors said in a report released this week. The Disney-owned company, based in Greenwich, Connecticut, is set to close in April and lay off its more than 450 employees. Disney, which also owns animation powerhouses Walt Disney Animation Studios and Pixar Animation Studios, announced the closure in February, citing difficult economic conditions amid the coronavirus pandemic. Connecticut auditors said Blue Sky received about $94.4 million in state film production tax credits from the 2017 through 2019 state fiscal years. Auditors said the company instead should have received state digital animation tax credits, which are capped at a total of $15 million per year for all companies…

6 min.
biden announces huge infrastructure plan to ‘win the future’

President Joe Biden outlined a huge $2.3 trillion plan Wednesday to reengineer the nation’s infrastructure in what he billed as “a once-in-a-generation investment in America” that would undo his predecessor’s signature legislative achievement — giant tax cuts for corporations — in the process. Speaking at a carpenters union training center in Pittsburgh, Biden drew comparisons between his hard-hatted proposed transformation of the U.S. economy and the space race — and promised results as grand in scale as the New Deal or Great Society programs that shaped the 20th century. “It’s not a plan that tinkers around the edges,” Biden said. “It’s a once-in-a-generation investment in America unlike anything we’ve seen or done since we built the interstate highway system and the space race decades ago. In fact, it’s the largest American…

1 min.
can i still spread the coronavirus after i’m vaccinated?

Can I still spread the coronavirus after I’m vaccinated? It’s possible. Experts say the risk is low, but are still studying how well the shots blunt the spread of the virus. The current vaccines are highly effective at preventing people from getting seriously sick with COVID-19. But even if vaccinated people don’t get sick, they might still get infected without showing any symptoms. Experts think the vaccine would also curb the chances of those people spreading the virus. “A vaccinated person controls the virus better, so the chances of transmitting will be greatly reduced,” said Dr. Robert Gallo a virus expert at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. Among the evidence so far: Studies suggesting if people do get infected despite vaccination, they harbor less coronavirus in the nose than the unvaccinated. That makes…

3 min.
us jobless claims rise to 719k as virus still forces layoffs

The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits rose by 61,000 last week to 719,000, signaling that many employers are still cutting jobs even as more businesses reopen, vaccines are increasingly administered and federal aid spreads through the economy. The Labor Department said Thursday that the number of claims increased from 658,000 the week before. Though the pace of applications has dropped sharply since early this year, they remain high by historical standards: Before the pandemic flattened the economy a year ago, jobless claims typically ran below 220,000 a week. Still, the four-week average of claims, which smooths out week-to-week gyrations, fell by 10,500 to 719,000 — the fewest since mid-March 2020, just before the pandemic began to cause widespread layoffs. All told, 3.8 million people were collecting traditional state benefits during the…

4 min.
safety last: risky investments soared at start of 2021

Who needs safety when the world’s about to get back to normal? Risky stocks seen as nearly untouchable a year ago burst to the market’s best performances during the first three months of 2021, headlining a fourth straight quarter of gains for the S&P 500. Stocks of airlines, oil producers and banks soared on expectations that COVID-19 vaccinations and massive spending by the U.S. government are setting the stage for a roaring economic recovery this year. They’re part of a flip-flop for the market’s leaderboard, as investments seen as the safest and most reliable earlier in the pandemic suddenly fell to the back of the pack. The tumbling around within the market has sometimes been chaotic — witness the sudden surge for GameStop in January, as a band of smaller-pocketed investors pumped up the…