📬 News of the Day for March 27, 2023
In today’s edition:
Amazon will soon launch two prototype internet satellites, in an effort to compete with SpaceX’s Starlink internet satellite service;
A new study finds that people who take Paxlovid shortly after infection may reduce their risk of developing long COVID;
Two Russians and an American who have been stuck on the International Space Station will return to Earth in late September;
The number of companies reporting that their workers can telework has fallen to pre-pandemic levels, according to a new Labor Department report;
Millions of Americans stopped working from home in 2022, with the number of employers reporting some teleworking falling to near pre-pandemic levels, according to a Department of Labor report.
That said, college towns, government centers, and technology hubs offer the highest number of remote jobs.
Lansing, Mich., had the highest rate of remote job postings, at about 39% of all postings, followed by Topeka, Kan., at 32%.
So-called “tracking pixels” from TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, were present in 30 U.S. state-government websites across 27 states, according to a review by Feroot Security.
Administrators who manage government websites use such pixels to help measure the effectiveness of advertising they have purchased on TikTok.
The review comes as lawmakers are considering a nationwide ban of the app.
Amazon will launch two prototype Kuiper satellites as early as May 4.
The Federal Communications Commission approved the final aspects of Amazon’s project last month.
The company plans to launch a total of 3,236 satellites by 2029.
Amazon is spending more than $10 billion to develop the project, with more than 1,000 employees.
Amazon has said it can offer speeds of up to one gigabit per second and bandwidth of one terabyte per second.
The company has not revealed the size of its satellites, but like Starlink’s, they might reflect enough sunlight to pose a problem to astronomers and even change the appearance of the night sky.
Amazon plans to build up to four satellites per day.
Microsoft has threatened to cut off access to its internet-search data, which it licenses to rival search engines.
The software maker licenses the data in its Bing search index, which is a map of the internet that can be quickly scanned in real time.
The potential move comes after Microsoft integrated a cousin of ChatGPT into Bing.
Russia's space agency has announced that two cosmonauts and an astronaut who have been stuck on the International Space Station will return to Earth in late September.
The return of Sergey Prokopyev and Dmitri Petelin and NASA's Frank Rubio was delayed after a coolant leak.
A three-person replacement crew is now set to head for the space station on Sept. 15.
Meanwhile, an empty spacecraft was sent to the station in late February to serve as a rescue capsule.
Jeff Bezos' space company Blue Origin has released findings from an investigation into a failed flight of a cargo mission last year.
The company's New Shepard rocket, flying the NS-23 mission carrying science and research payloads, suffered a failure in September 2022.
Blue Origin says it identified "a thermo-structural failure of the engine nozzle" as the direct cause of the issue.
The resulting thrust misalignment properly triggered the Crew Capsule escape system, which functioned as designed throughout the flight.
Public safety was unaffected by the mishap, and no changes to crew safety system designs were recommended as a result of the investigation.
The U.S. Space Force has awarded a $1.6 million contract to California-based Arkisys
The contract is to build one of the first commercial orbiting platforms and long-duration space-infrastructure-as-a-service businesses.
This visionary platform concept can be employed for a variety of applications including new technology hosting, satellite integration, assembly, and resupply.
Langston University in Oklahoma is canceling more than $4.5 million of its students’ debt.
The initiative brings the amount of debt cleared by the university to more than $9.2 million over the past two years.
The relief initiative will affect students enrolled throughout the summer 2022, fall 2022, and spring 2023 semesters.
People who take Pfizer's Covid antiviral treatment Paxlovid shortly after infection may reduce their risk of developing long COVID, a new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association shows.
People who took the drug within five days of a positive test saw a 26% lower risk of long COVID.
The study only enrolled people who are eligible for the drug under emergency use authorization.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released updated data that show one in 36 eight-year-olds in the U.S. has autism, up from one in 44 in 2018 and one in 47 in 2020.
The estimate comes from CDC’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network.
For the first time, Black, Hispanic, and Asian or Pacific Islander children show a higher prevalence than white children.
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