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Will We Accept Being Monitored Via Our Smartphones As A Way Out Of The Pandemic, And Will We Have Any Say In The Matter?

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There’s been a lot of coverage of Apple’s and Google’s joint initiative to develop a contact tracing tool and collaboration on monitoring the pandemic. Such collaboration is rare. The fact that these two companies effectively control between them the whole market for the smartphone operating systems we carry around with us at all times, make this even more unusual.

What is contact tracing and how does it work? Basically, it’s a set of technologies that use the sensors in our terminals and internet infrastructure to identify people who may have come into contact with us, and then collect additional information about their movements. Contact tracing is an effective way to interrupt transmission and reduce the spread of coronavirus, alert our contacts to the possibility of infection and to provide preventive advice or care, as well as diagnosis, advice and treatment to people already infected, or to investigate the epidemiology of a disease in a particular population.

Implementing these types of initiatives is possible without completely compromising the privacy of users, but given the nature of geolocation data, the proposal has generated concern. In practice, a large percentage of the population has already given permission to Apple or Google, and possibly many other companies, regarding their geolocation data in order to use certain applications. But doing so for something as sensitive as health data requires a certain level of trust not only in these companies’ privacy safeguards, but also in the public institutions involved, something that for many is a real leap of faith. There are no easy answers here.Today In: Leadership Strategy

How do such systems work? In a first phase, the idea is to generate a common interface that public health agencies can integrate into their own applications. In the second, the idea is to develop a system-level contact tracking system that will work on both iOS and Android devices, which uses the smartphone to transmit anonymous identification at short ranges via Bluetooth. The device generates a daily tracking key, and transmits its last 14 days of keys on a rotating basis to other devices, which look for a match. This correlation is also capable of determining both the threshold of time spent in proximity, as well as the distance between the two devices. From this data, if a match is found with another user who has notified the system that he or she has tested positive, he or she is notified so that he or she can take action, perform the test and, if necessary, self-quarantine.

All of this raises a number of questions, for example, if our terminals generate a 16-byte identifier each day, which they must transmit together with those corresponding to the previous fourteen days to all the devices they cross, what levels of data transmission are we talking about? Logically, we will have to introduce some cut-off variable that will allow us to restrict transmissions, and the first candidate is the geolocation record. There are also possible problems such as people not registering having tested positive — fearful of the stigma or restrictions on their movement — or the other way around: people reporting positive when they aren’t, issues that could be addressed by attaching some kind of personal data to identifiers that would allow offenders to be located, but which raises civil rights issues.

As Sara Harrison pointed out a few days ago in The Markup, “When is anonymous not really anonymous?”, we know that the anonymization of data is not enough to guarantee privacy, because there are numerous techniques of de-anonymization — and abundant evidence of their use.

One way or the other, we are about to enter a phase in which, using the pandemic as a justification, it will be normal for data as personal as our geolocation, our state of health or proximity to other people to be collected and processed. The risk, as Edward Snowden has warned, is that some governments will develop systems that can continue to be used to surveil us. And not just governments: this kind of data can be used by companies to practice various forms of discrimination.

In addition to risks, there are opportunities, related to the future of health care: what would have happened, in a hypothetical scenario where privacy was taken for granted, if our devices were capable of transmitting our basic health parameters to a central authority? How simple would it have been to have noted the start of the epidemic and treat it properly before it spread? What about detecting the symptoms of other types of health problems which, in many cases, due to their late detection, cause not only more suffering to patients, but also incur costs to the health system?

Source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/enriquedans/2020/04/12/will-we-accept-being-monitored-via-our-smartphones-as-a-way-out-of-the-pandemic-and-will-we-have-any-say-in-thematter/?ss=leadership-strategy#4948031c3379

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The Motivator

FIFA 21: No demo for upcoming game, EA Sports confirm

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The company says it will instead focus on perfecting the latest iteration of the series ahead of release

EA Sports has announced that the company will not be releasing a demo for FIFA 21.

FIFA 21 is set to be released on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on Friday, October 9, having being pushed back from its usual September release date due to the coronavirus pandemic.

In addition, the game will also be eventually released on the upcoming Sony PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, making this year’s release one of the most important in recent years.

Typically, EA Sports release a demo for each year’s game around three weeks before the official release, allowing players to test out the gameplay in one-off matches featuring some of the game’s top teams.

The demo is then typically followed by an early access period for those that are EA Play members, offering players a chance to play the full game for a limited time before release.

However, EA confirmed on Monday that this year’s game will not have a demo, with the company instead focusing on making sure the full game is prepared for its October 9 release date.

“We aren’t releasing a demo for FIFA 21. Instead we’ve made the decision to focus our development team’s time on delivering the best full game experience for current & next-gen consoles,” EA said in a statement.

“We look forward to EA PLAY members jumping in 10 days from now and launching the game Oct 9.”

In recent weeks, EA has begun to unveil the list of the highest-rated players in the game, with Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Robert Lewandowski earning the top three places on this year’s rankings on the men’s side with U.S. women’s national team star Megan Rapinoe leading the way for the women.

This year’s game will feature improvements to career mode, new attacking systems such as Agile Dribbling, Positioning Personality and Creative Runs and improvements to the highly-popular Ultimate Team mode including FUT Co-Op gameplay and increased club customisation options.

Additionally, the game will feature a series of new icons: Eric Cantona, Ferenc Puskas, Xavi, Nemanja Vidic, Petr Cech, Samuel Eto’o, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Phillip Lahm, Fernando Torres, Ashley Cole and Davor Suker.

Source: https://www.goal.com/en/news/fifa-21-no-demo-for-upcoming-game-ea-sports-confirm/w6bswvm9fg9h16crm45vzt6qs

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The Motivator

Editing HTML Like A Boss In VS Code

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Here’s a seven minute video from Caleb Porzio that focuses on some of Emmet‘s HTML editing features. You might think of Emmet as that thing that expands abbreviations like table.stats>tr*3>td*3 into glorious, expanded, and perfect HTML. But Emmet has other HTML editing trickery up its sleeve. My favorite is “wrap with abbreviation” (which happens to be Cmd/Ctrl + Shift + A on CodePen), but there are more, like expanding your selection inward and outward and tag changing.

If you haven’t seen it, the Emmet 2 preview on CodePen is pretty neeeeat. It shows you what you’re about to expand into before you do it:

Direct Link →

Source: https://css-tricks.com/editing-html-like-a-boss-in-vs-code/

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The Motivator

PS5 Game Install Sizes Revealed, And They’re Enormous

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There was hope that the efficiency of the PlayStation 5’s super-fast SSD hard drive would reduce game file sizes, as titles wouldn’t need to duplicate data to ease read speeds. That, apparently, is not quite the case, as the minimum install requirements for a couple of PS5 launch games have been revealed – and they’re enormous.

Demon’s Souls, for example, will eat up 66GB of the next-gen system’s storage space; Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales will gobble up 50GB, and if you plump up for the Ultimate Edition – which includes Marvel’s Spider-Man: Remastered as well – you’ll lose an eye-watering 105GB. That’s already an eighth of the device’s available 825GB.

It’s worth noting that textures will be more detailed on the PS5, so developers may well be saving space compared to PS4 titles, but using it up with higher quality assets. In the case of Marvel’s Spider-Man: Remastered, for example, the original game with all of its DLC installed takes up approximately 75GB on the PS4, compared to roughly 55GB in its revamped form.

Still, it looks like you’re definitely going to have to juggle which games you’ve got installed – although eventually you will be able to expand the system’s storage space. You can find out more about that through the following link: Which SSD Drives Will Be Compatible with PS5?

Source: https://www.pushsquare.com/news/2020/09/ps5_game_install_sizes_revealed_and_theyre_enormous

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