It’s Monday. Let’s begin.
Hiawatha Bray goes hands off for 2020, which is turning out to be a good year for contactless payment systems and a bad year for cash.
The coronavirus curve for the US is not very reassuring. RT is above 1 in more states than not – way above 1 in some. Compare that to two months ago when most states were in the green. Florida has a particularly interesting history line. Globally, the US, Latin America and Mexico accounted for half of all deaths in the last week. But watch for India and Africa to explode next, experts say. Also, scientists are studying a small genetic variant of the virus that makes it more infectious. It seems to be dominating now in most locations.
So still no mask wearing? In some Massachusetts towns wearing a mask is mandatory out doors and people are complying. But in some parts of the country it’s a political issue. I can see objections over comfort and convenience, breathing, etc. But politics? A weird mind set there.
The Post looks again at factors slowing police reform. Arbitration is a big one.
And hold on to those old iPhone chargers and lightning headphones. The next iPhone won’t include them in the box. Analysts think Apple is doing this to offset higher production costs in an effort to keep the price of the phone near where it was last year. I’ll buy that.
Saturday. It will be sunny for most of the day. So put on those glasses.
The Forth of July TV special from the Esplanade will be, mostly, a rerun this year.
David Scharfenberg goes beyond the slogans to examine possible solutions to the issues in policing today. “America’s policing problem is really a set of complex, interlocking problems. And they will not yield to a “defund the police” slogan or a hastily conceived 10 percent cut to the police budget,” he writes. His article starts and ends with a victim of an unsolved violent crime. Because we shouldn’t lose sight of what’s at stake.
First murder hornets and a global pandemic. Now giant stinging jellyfish are arriving under the shadow of a killer Saharan dust cloud. I can’t wait to see what the second half of 2020 has to offer.
Jason Cipriani takes us through the process of adding stacked widgets to your home screen in iOS 14, which will be available for public beta sometime in July.
And it doesn’t look like you’ll be able to take a European vacation this summer. You probably wouldn’t want to get on an airplane anyway. (But Iceland is still an option if you do.)
It’s Tuesday. Today’s word is fraternize.
Victoria Turk examines digital etiquette in the time of coronavirus. But the crew from Progressive Insurance really nails the reality.
The state budget normally comes out in April. But nothing about this year has been normal. A stop-gap, one month budget, meant to keep the government up and running, is making its way through the legislature while the administration continues its work on the main FY2021 budget.
In Massachusetts, we’ve flattened the curve – and then some.
US citizens traveling to Ireland are still under an order to quarantine. And they’re not joking over there. If you’re an Irish citizen wanting to travel to the US, well, forget it. You can’t come. That’s the scoop from Laoise Moore, the Irish general counsel to Boston, received by Ed Forry.
Well, no new hardware was announced, but a lot of new software features were previewed at the Apple event yesterday. Here’s a breakdown from 9to5Mac. Also, Dan Moren hones in on some of the little things you may have missed.
And The Grateful Dead is expanding its artistic range by introducing a new line of deodorant. You’ll smell like Sunshine. Even a blind man knows when the sun is shining.
Monday, Monday. Birthdays for Elizabeth Warren, Meryl Streep, Todd Rundgren and John Dillinger.
Ty Burr recommends an album. But whatever you do, don’t listen to it. Just let it play in the background. It’s Steve Reich’s minimalistic Music for 18 Musicians. I agree with him about the album but not his characterization of Philip Glass’s music as a “four-hour dial tone.” Glass you can actually listen to.
Apple unveils its software and hardware roadmap this afternoon at its annual developer conference. Rumors indicate they’ll announce a major architecture change for the Mac, moving from Intel chips to ARM, the chips that currently power iPhones and iPads. I also think we’ll see new industrial design for a future iMac. And a successor to the not-fully-baked Catalina operating system, possibly called Big Sur. All this is happening at a time that Apple is facing criticism from the developer community for its App Store policies. Should be an interesting presentation.
“Scottish man fined for calling an Irish man a leprechaun.” Really? And the photo?
Interesting suggestions for police reform from an academic who studies police interactions with minority populations: more pay, less stress and less working hours for officers.
And, The Times profiles Josh Kantor, organist for the Red Sox, with a link to his afternoon on-line concerts. Good times never seemed so good.
It’s Tuesday. Today’s word is null.
Here it comes. It’s the second wave… of coronavirus stupidity.
From today’s Globe: “Boston has regularly touted the effectiveness of ‘community policing.’ Does it work?” Yes. The answer is yes. People are angry right now and they aren’t focusing on the positive aspects of policing. But compared to other cities and other police departments, Boston is doing pretty well. Of course there’s room to get even better.
Bruce Mohl reports that a business-backed oversight group is sounding the alarm on the T’s finances, which are quickly becoming unsustainable. Expect a $400 million dollar deficit in 2022 and expenses overtaking revenue straight through 2025. They’re calling it an existential crisis.
The last version of the Mac operating system, Catalina, is still pretty rough, even this late in its lifecycle. Hopefully the new version, set to be announced next week, will be more stable. The big question, though, is what it will be named. I’m going with Monterey.
And the International Space Station is getting some new equipment. Gravity is the opposite of comedy.