7 votes

Daily coronavirus-related chat, questions, and minor updates - March 22

This thread is posted daily, and is intended as a place for more-casual discussion of the coronavirus and questions/updates that may not warrant their own dedicated topics. Tell us about what the situation is like where you live!

20 comments

  1. [3]
    Deimos
    Link
    Rand Paul has tested positive, the first US Senator.

    Rand Paul has tested positive, the first US Senator.

    11 votes
    1. [2]
      Autoxidation
      Link Parent
      Given his resistance to the stimulus bill I can't help but think this is a bit ironic.

      Given his resistance to the stimulus bill I can't help but think this is a bit ironic.

      6 votes
      1. Omnicrola
        Link Parent
        I'm actually kind of annoyed by the daily reports of "this politician/celebrity has contracted the virus". It just doesn't seem important. If they're in ICU that's a different story, that actually...

        I'm actually kind of annoyed by the daily reports of "this politician/celebrity has contracted the virus". It just doesn't seem important. If they're in ICU that's a different story, that actually might matter. If X person has tested positive ok great so they're in self isolation, just like the majority of the country.

        4 votes
  2. [3]
    Adys
    Link
    @deimos Despite its activity (in fact, because of its activity) I think this thread is posted too often; right now, I'm seeing today's and yesterday's in the same spot on the frontpage, with...

    @deimos Despite its activity (in fact, because of its activity) I think this thread is posted too often; right now, I'm seeing today's and yesterday's in the same spot on the frontpage, with yesterday's sitting at 18 comments and this one at zero. Maybe every other day is better?


    Anyhow. I rewatched some Mitchell & Webb yesterday, and YouTube immediately recommended me the sketch Remain Indoors, which is eerily appropriate for the situation.

    I'm starting to get used to the new normal. Coming to terms with the lockdown probably being extended by a month (in some form) in the coming week. I'm technically allowed to go out for exercise but I've not done that; I'm living in a very similar way as when I was working on my first startup: bunkered home and working a ton.

    In the mean time, I've been tracking down first-party resources for each country's covid19 statistics. Belgium's is horrendeous: The more interesting statistics are locked down in a generated graph image inside of a pdf distributed daily. I'm serious, this is the document.

    9 votes
    1. hungariantoast
      Link Parent
      Just a heads up, I too have had thoughts about this subgroup and I went ahead and posted a topic to ~tildes to discuss some stuff. I mention you and link to this comment in the topic. Topics about...

      Just a heads up, I too have had thoughts about this subgroup and I went ahead and posted a topic to ~tildes to discuss some stuff. I mention you and link to this comment in the topic.

      4 votes
    2. skybrian
      Link Parent
      In theory we could each start our own topic and post updates there. That would make for better reading later, but I don't think we're set up for that, and it might seem a little lonely. For now I...

      In theory we could each start our own topic and post updates there. That would make for better reading later, but I don't think we're set up for that, and it might seem a little lonely.

      For now I think we should just pay attention to the dates.

      2 votes
  3. [2]
    kfwyre
    Link
    A family member who's a mechanic recommended that we move our cars every so often during isolation, as apparently letting them sit idle for long periods of time is bad for them. Realizing I hadn't...

    A family member who's a mechanic recommended that we move our cars every so often during isolation, as apparently letting them sit idle for long periods of time is bad for them. Realizing I hadn't driven my car in eight days, I took it for a quick spin yesterday. It was the first time in over a week I'd gone out past my immediate neighborhood where I walk my dog daily. Normally my local restaurants and shops would have been busy and full on a Saturday evening, but everything was quiet and subdued. It wasn't a ghost town by any means, but it looks like people and businesses are definitely taking this seriously.

    My husband also made this vegan chocolate chip cookie recipe which was flat out delicious. We aren't vegan, but we have been trying to reduce our animal product consumption where possible, and this recipe has the benefit of having shelf-stable ingredients, which is ideal for a self-quarantine of indefinite duration.

    Grocery delivery is an option for our nearby store, so we put in an order last week for this upcoming week. Delivery slots are filling up fast, and we've been living on our food stash for a full week now, so we're due for a restock of some items. We locked in the delivery slot early and have been slowly adding things to the cart as we use them up here, ensuring that we're buying what we need but not too much. We plan to continue this rhythm, pre-scheduling a delivery a week or more in advance, then filling up the cart with items as need arises.

    With regards to work, my district is finally moving forward with a distance learning plan, and my husband has fully transitioned to working from home (thanks again, @pseudolobster!), so we're in an ideal place to stay away from everyone and plan to do so for quite a while. Both of us are pretty strong homebodies even outside of a quarantine, so we've been able to pretty effortlessly adjust to this. The hardest part is the social piece. We are incredibly close with my husband's family, and we are constantly getting together, so the absence of these meetups is going to be very hard for all of us. We've upped our group message chatting significantly, but it's not a solid replacement for meeting up to share dinner together. The same goes for our dog, who loves getting to see all of his other friends in the family on a regular basis. We've started taking him on more walks now that we have more time for them, but we're worried he's going to start to get a little lonely with just us.

    With more time on my plate, I started reading again, which is a habit I'd fallen out of. I used to dive into fiction with zeal, but lately I've really only been listening to nonfiction audiobooks while commuting and doing household tasks like cleaning. I started with Kazuo Ishiguro's The Remains of the Day after getting a recommendation from @grahamiam, and it was actually quite a challenge to quiet my mind enough to get through it. Even before this outbreak I think I was primed to habitually check my phone, the news, etc. and trying to read a slow-moving, un-flashy book was a valuable exercise in patience for me. I was surprised at how hard it was for me to let my mind simply focus on the book, as I was fighting a near-constant compulsion to respond to a text, send out a new message, check the news for updates, etc.

    7 votes
    1. wundumguy
      Link Parent
      I really enjoyed reading this. Glad you guys are adjusting well

      I really enjoyed reading this. Glad you guys are adjusting well

      4 votes
  4. [3]
    cwagner
    Link
    Germany, 24,806 (+2593 since I last posted, 20.5 h ago), 436 (+53) in my state. Today, the decision was made to not introduce a nationwide curfew but limit groups in public to two people instead...

    Germany, 24,806 (+2593 since I last posted, 20.5 h ago), 436 (+53) in my state.

    Today, the decision was made to not introduce a nationwide curfew but limit groups in public to two people instead (exemptions for people living together and families). Furthermore, the last few non-essential stores are closing (still somewhat confused why hairdressers were needed)

    7 votes
    1. Adys
      Link Parent
      Turns out, same in Belgium. Hairdressers are actually complaining about this as it prevents them from benefiting from the various coronavirus-related compensations despite obvious issues… and on...

      still somewhat confused why hairdressers were needed

      Turns out, same in Belgium. Hairdressers are actually complaining about this as it prevents them from benefiting from the various coronavirus-related compensations despite obvious issues… and on top of that, they are limited to 1 client at a time.

      5 votes
    2. vektor
      Link Parent
      Germany's looking rather good so far I think. It's a long way to go, but so far I think stuff's been working. Very few deaths which probably means we know about most infections, and the growth...

      Germany's looking rather good so far I think. It's a long way to go, but so far I think stuff's been working. Very few deaths which probably means we know about most infections, and the growth rate of case numbers seems to slow down. Let's hope it's not because testing is breaking down.

      I'd really like to play around with the raw data the RKI is using. See how testing lag is behaving over time etc.

      And I'm very interested in the numbers of tests performed by countries too. If anyone has better google-fu than me, please enlighten me.

      2 votes
  5. Deimos
    Link
    Interesting Twitter thread with some details about what the situation and measures are like in Wuhan, China now: https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1241620966762938370.html

    Interesting Twitter thread with some details about what the situation and measures are like in Wuhan, China now: https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1241620966762938370.html

    6 votes
  6. [2]
    Icarus
    Link
    I feel like now is the best time to start thumbing through my Encyclopedia of Country Living. Even though I live in an apartment complex, its probably a good time to get a small herb garden...

    I feel like now is the best time to start thumbing through my Encyclopedia of Country Living. Even though I live in an apartment complex, its probably a good time to get a small herb garden growing. If you do live in the country, this book is excellent since it covers a lot of homesteading topics.

    5 votes
    1. Omnicrola
      Link Parent
      We're coming up on spring garden planting time. And if you want to start some seeds inside you can do that regardless of the weather. I'm planning to probably go outside and do some garden prep...

      We're coming up on spring garden planting time. And if you want to start some seeds inside you can do that regardless of the weather. I'm planning to probably go outside and do some garden prep this week if the weather is nice.

      3 votes
  7. [2]
    hamstergeddon
    (edited )
    Link
    I have a therapy appointment next week and I just got a text from my therapist saying she was still open for sessions, but was also offering sessions via video conferencing. She explained they...

    I have a therapy appointment next week and I just got a text from my therapist saying she was still open for sessions, but was also offering sessions via video conferencing. She explained they were disinfecting the office between appointments and were practicing safe distancing in the office.

    I'm a little conflicted about what I want to do. On one hand I could really use the chance to go out and socialize in-person and I trust that my therapist wouldn't be taking any risks if she had concerns. On the other hand, should I even risk it?

    edit: Ended up opting for a video session. I think just video chatting with a familiar face will help a lot. I'm not a very social person, but even I'm starting to miss seeing people (other than my immediate family...sorry family)

    4 votes
    1. bleem
      Link Parent
      I really just had a therapist appointment over the phone. It wasn't bad, felt a little weird at first but we got into the flow of things as the conversation went on.

      I really just had a therapist appointment over the phone. It wasn't bad, felt a little weird at first but we got into the flow of things as the conversation went on.

      5 votes
  8. [3]
    Icarus
    Link
    I read this Twitter thread about Zoom having spyware. https://twitter.com/Ouren/status/1241398181205889024?s=19 As someone who is new to working from home is there any way to contain or block...

    I read this Twitter thread about Zoom having spyware.

    https://twitter.com/Ouren/status/1241398181205889024?s=19

    As someone who is new to working from home is there any way to contain or block these permissions?

    1 vote
    1. pvik
      Link Parent
      Here is an article from EFF which covers this. Also, the HN discussion thread has a lot more information regarding this. The bottom line is do not use the zoom client, you can connect to Zoom...

      Here is an article from EFF which covers this.

      Also, the HN discussion thread has a lot more information regarding this. The bottom line is do not use the zoom client, you can connect to Zoom meeting from the browser itself. Most of the vulnerabilities seem to be in the Zoom desktop clients.

      Edit: Looks like someone also built a browser extension to use the Zoom web meeting version here.

      2 votes
    2. Sunward
      Link Parent
      Honestly, if you're working from home, it should be isolated from your home computer usage in some way. If your employer didn't issue you a device, or you're a freelancer or something, at least...

      Honestly, if you're working from home, it should be isolated from your home computer usage in some way. If your employer didn't issue you a device, or you're a freelancer or something, at least use a separate account on your own computer. That will help mitigate some of the privacy losses from this sort of thing.

      Also, that thread is hugely overblown: you cannot see what programs other people are running (unless they're sharing their screens, of course). As the presenter in a meeting, if the host has enabled the feature (it's not enabled by default), you can see in the participants list whether focus has been on a window other than the Zoom meeting for 30 seconds or more, but you can't see the name of the program or title of the window that they have focused; only that they haven't had Zoom focused for 30+ seconds.

      However, if even that feels like too much of an invasion of of privacy (though IMO it's on a par with someone looking over your shoulder at your desk at work, mildly creepy but not a huge violation), then as @pvik linked below, there's a browser extension that will always join the web version of the meeting... though even browsers can detect when they're not in focus, so that might not gain you much.

      Edited to add: If you are using a work-issued device, you should probably act as if you have no privacy on it anyway; Zoom attention tracking should be the least of your worries.