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Monday, March 2, 2020

Oppo launches six-camera Reno 3 Pro in India

Oppo has announced the Reno 3 Pro, the latest entry in the ever-more-convoluted Reno series. It’s a mid-range model that’s altogether separate from the Reno 3 Pro 5G released in China in December; this model is launching in India first.

The Reno 3 Pro feels slimmer and lighter than most of its peers, at 8.1mm thick and 175g. Otherwise, though, its design is pretty unremarkable — it’s yet another bezel-less Chinese phone with a gradient finish and cameras everywhere the eye can see. Oppo says the finishes are all meant to evoke the sky; the model you see above is the “Auroral Blue” version, supposedly inspired by the northern lights, while there are also “Midnight Black” and sunrise-pink-ish “Sky White” variants.

The screen is a 6.4-inch 20:9 1080p OLED panel with an in-display fingerprint sensor and a pill-shaped hole-punch cutout for two camera modules. The main one is a 44-megapixel sensor, apparently a world first, and it’s backed with a 2-megapixel sensor for depth-of field information. A higher refresh rate would have been nice, but otherwise the screen is great. I also like the neat effect where the pixels around the hole punch glow brightly when you use face unlock.

There’s a fairly large bump on the back that houses four more cameras. The main camera has a 64-megapixel sensor and f/1.7 lens, while there’s also a 13-megapixel f/2.4 2x telephoto, an 8-megapixel f/2.2 ultrawide, and a 2-megapixel monochrome sensor. Oppo is claiming up to 5x hybrid zoom and 20x digital zoom; sure enough, in my brief testing photos looked pretty good up to 5x, though I wouldn’t push it too far beyond that. The device I used was using non-final camera software, however.

Other specs include MediaTek’s new Helio P95 processor, 8GB of RAM, 128GB or 256GB of expandable storage, dual SIM slots as well as a separate microSD slot, and a headphone jack. The phone runs ColorOS 7, based on Android 10. The 4,025mAh battery can be fast-charged at 30W with Oppo’s VOOC 4.0 system, which the company says will get you from 0 to 50-percent full in 20 minutes and 100 percent in 56. This probably doesn’t need to be said, but unlike China’s Reno 3 Pro 5G, this phone does not support 5G.

Oppo is launching the Reno 3 Pro in India this Friday, priced at Rs. 29,990 ($415) for a model with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. The 256GB model will cost Rs. 32,990 ($455) but is only listed as “coming soon.”

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Sunday, March 1, 2020

Sharp will use a TV factory to mass-produce face masks

Photo by Sam Byford / The Verge

Sharp plans to start making face masks at one of its factories in Japan in response to surging demand sparked by the coronavirus outbreak, The Associated Press reports. The plant, in Kameyama, Mie prefecture, is usually used for mass-producing large LCD panels and assembling TVs.

Sharp will make 150,000 masks a day by the end of this month, rising to as much as 500,000 a day. The facility is said to be well-suited for mask production because of the essential high standards of cleanliness. Sharp, which is owned by Foxconn, reportedly hasn’t yet settled on pricing or distribution plans for the masks.

It’s been difficult to find masks in Japan

Face masks are a common sight in Japan, particularly in winter when many people wear them to help prevent the spread of illnesses. But since the COVID-19 outbreak began, it’s been difficult to find them and other household items like toilet paper, with most retailers restricting buyers to a single pack at a time. In some countries outside Japan, where masks are less often seen in stores, sellers have been jacking up prices on online marketplaces.

US surgeon general Jerome Adams urged the public not to add to the demand in a tweet over the weekend. “Seriously people — STOP BUYING MASKS!” Adams wrote. “They are NOT effective in preventing general public from catching #Coronavirus, but if healthcare providers can’t get them to care for sick patients, it puts them and our communities at risk!”

World Health Organization guidelines state that healthy people should only wear masks if taking care of someone who is suspected to have been infected with the coronavirus, but for people with symptoms they may help slow the spread of the disease in combination with thorough and frequent hand-washing.

Original Article ©Copyrights

AT&T TV now available nationwide with Android TV set-top box — and a two-year contract

Image: AT&T TV

AT&T TV is launching nationwide today after initially rolling out to over a dozen markets last year. The subscription TV service — not to be confused with AT&T TV Now (formerly DirecTV Now) — is contract-based, which is a departure from the freedom you get with month-to-month streaming TV apps like YouTube TV, Hulu with Live TV, and Sling TV. Signing up for a two-year agreement gets you an Android TV set-top box and a very cable-like remote control (with a Google Assistant button).

AT&T is trying to position AT&T TV as its premium streaming TV experience; it’s more for people seeking a better cable / satellite alternative than a cheaper one. This is basically AT&T’s next play as it moves on from DirecTV, which continues to bleed customers each quarter as more consumers cut the cord. Alongside live TV, you can install apps like Netflix, Disney Plus, and others from the Google Play Store or control smart home devices with the Assistant-enabled remote. Chromecast support is built in, too.

You can watch AT&T TV on the box when in front of your television, and there’s also an AT&T TV app for iOS, iPadOS, and Android. Setup is pretty simple. You plug the box into your TV’s HDMI port, enter your Wi-Fi info, sign in with your AT&T TV credentials, and then start watching. Everything will feel familiar to cable/satellite converts: the remote has number buttons, with a channel guide that sticks closely to DirecTV’s listings. But here, everything is streaming over the web.

The “home screen” of AT&T TV’s custom Android TV experience is always live TV. Whenever you turn it on, it’ll pick up from the last channel you were on. Again, very cable-like, and that’s actually a touch that I appreciate. Having to seek out live TV can make things feel disjointed.

On its own, AT&T TV starts at $49.99 per month. Here’s the company’s channel lineup so you can see what’s offered in each package. The base “entertainment” package includes local broadcast channels, ESPN, AMC, HGTV, FX, USA, and a decent selection of other cable networks. Sports fans will want to step up to the middle-tier “choice” channel package ($54.99), which adds regional sports networks — like all the ones that YouTube TV nearly just lost — and others such as the YES Network. The company is promoting a bundle offer that includes gigabit home internet (where available) and AT&T TV for a combined $80 per month. With all plans, HBO is included for free for the first three months, but you’ll have to pay up after that to keep it.

But here’s something to keep in mind: AT&T TV prices go up dramatically after 12 months of service. Entertainment goes from $49.99 to $93; Choice goes to $110; Xtra to $124; and Ultimate to $135. You also have to contend with an activation fee and early termination fees if you cancel service before your service agreement is up. (The ETF is $15 for each month that is still on your contract.) If you’ve got YouTube TV or something similar, these might strike you as ugly memories of the cable days. And since you’re stuck in that two-year agreement, there’s really no way to avoid the substantial price hike.

So then what’s the point? Well, AT&T is pushing a message of simplicity. You can search across live TV, on-demand content, and streaming apps from one central place without having to switch HDMI ports or juggle remotes. “For example, you can easily switch between a live basketball game, Netflix, YouTube, or listen to music on Pandora or Spotify,” the company wrote in its press release. Unfortunately, there are holes in that app selection, with Amazon Prime Video and Hulu unavailable on the box. So right off the bat, AT&T isn’t quite delivering on its vision.

The included cloud DVR lets you save up to 500 hours of shows and movies, though content gets deleted after 90 days. AT&T TV allows for up to three concurrent streams, so a couple people can be streaming live TV outside the home when someone’s also watching on the couch. I’ve been testing the box for the last several days, and I’ve had a pleasant enough experience with the service so far. The overall interface and menus are straightforward to navigate, and there’s an old-fashioned channel grid if that’s your preference for channel surfing. When you don’t want to bother pulling up the guide, you can just tell Google Assistant to tune to a certain network by name, which works decently for the most part.

I’ll be spending more time with AT&T TV over the next few weeks, and the company has said that HBO Max will see deep integration into the experience once it launches in May. But does AT&T TV make sense if you’re already happy with a different internet TV service on your Roku or another streaming device? Certainly not. It’s especially hard to justify those post-promotion prices compared to other streaming TV apps, which hover around $50 monthly right now. AT&T is hoping that AT&T TV will come off as a next-generation replacement for cable and satellite and help stem its video losses, but price-conscious consumers might not ever give the service any serious consideration compared to the cheaper competition. AT&T has done well in making live TV the central piece of AT&T TV, but fundamentally the end result isn’t that far off from subscribing to YouTube TV on an Nvidia Shield.

Original Article ©Copyrights

Mike Bloomberg cosplays as president in coronavirus ad

Democratic Presidential Candidate Mike Bloomberg Campaigns Ahead Of Super TuesdayPhoto by Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Billionaire Mike Bloomberg’s presidential campaign purchased primetime ad space Sunday night — reportedly worth at least $1 million — so the former New York City mayor could cosplay as the president of the U.S. He addressed the nation, vaguely, about the threat of coronavirus.

Bloomberg’s ad ran around 8:30PM ET on CBS and NBC, during “God Friended Me,” a CBS exclusive about an atheist who gets a friend request from God. The ad space could have cost the Bloomberg campaign anywhere from $1.25 to 3 million, The New York Times reported Saturday.

In this three-minute ad, Bloomberg stands in a room — or in front of a green screen of a room? — that looks remarkably similar to the White House’s Oval Office. He wears a pin in the shape of an American flag while he addresses the American public about the coronavirus.

“I know this has been a very worrisome week for many Americans,” Bloomberg says at the top of the ad. “The coronavirus is spreading, and the economy is taking a hit. Markets have fallen because of uncertainty. At times like this, it’s the job of the president to reassure the public that he or she is taking all of the necessary steps to protect the health and well-being of every citizen.”

Bloomberg hasn’t won a single primary contest. He’s spent millions on television and social media ads to increase his name recognition among voters ahead of the important Super Tuesday primaries. That money hasn’t won him the presidency just yet, but it sure has let him play dress-up so he can pretend like he’s already won.

Original Article ©Copyrights

Lionkiller turns the anecdote of Mulan into an interactive fable in some unspecified time in the future of the Opium Wars

It would even be now no longer easy to search out time to invent a video sport, significantly whereas you easiest have a number of hours a week to play. In our biweekly column Short Play we counsel video video games that can even be started and completed in a weekend.

Instruments care for Twine have made it more uncomplicated than ever to manufacture interactive text-essentially based video games. However whereas they're going to even be straight forward to manufacture, that doesn’t manufacture it any more uncomplicated to expose an horny fable. As a creator, you've got nowhere to shroud: there aren’t graphical avatars for the player to manipulate or track and verbalize performing to aid present the fable. It’s pretty phrases and hyperlinks. Despite that, video games care for Lionkiller veil pretty how horny and strong interactive fiction can even be — even though they easiest have phrases to work with.

Lionkiller is a reinterpretation of the anecdote of famed 4th or Fifth century female Chinese warrior Hua Mulan. It deviates from the distinctive provide field materials and the infamous Disney adaptation by surroundings the fable in some unspecified time in the future of the first section of the mid-19th century Opium Wars between the Chinese and British. It’s a battle that started attributable to British retailers illegally smuggling and promoting highly addictive opium to investigate cross-take a look at to stability their commerce deficit for luxurious items from China. The Chinese executive turn into now no longer significantly serious about this, to claim the least.

Lionkiller begins with Mulan working at a flower shop, and the choices you manufacture have an effect on how her fable plays out in both sizable and little techniques, much care for they devise in video games care for Existence is Uncommon or Telltale’s The Walking Ineffective. Does Mulan be half of the navy to preserve their father from getting drafted? Or her brother who has fled? Or presumably slightly than her like interest so as that she can be able to live her dream?

It’s now no longer these choices that preserve you engaged and interacting with the fable. In its effect, it is a ways a aggregate of the writing — which is quick nonetheless impactful — and the reach it uses text hyperlinks practically care for cuts in a movie or TV veil. Successfully, all Twine video games are a desire of webpages plump of text, in which there are colored text hyperlinks you click to transfer from one page to one other, or most regularly they add, steal, or alternate the text on the present page.

In Lionkiller every of these pages feels less care for learning a page of a ebook and more care for a shot or 2nd in a elevated movie scene, with the hyperlinks that fling between pages feeling care for cuts between pictures or scenes. The hyperlinks that add or alternate the text work much care for whereas you were a movie editor, providing you with moments the effect it adds or changes a shot to more explicitly specific the subtext of a scene. And with these hyperlinks being now no longer foremost, your desire to have interplay with them feels as whereas you are serving to to manufacture the scene.

What’s immense about these interactions is the reach they change into as computerized as turning a page in a ebook. It pretty construct of happens and becomes section of the float of learning. You’re never overly attentive to how much you are interacting, nonetheless you moreover don’t pick in as a passive reader the effect the seems of an interplay feels surprising.

Except for being a immense sport, Lionkiller is moreover a immense reminder of how now no longer regularly interactive fiction video games are acknowledged beyond their arena of interest. Right here's despite the truth that they’re most regularly incredibly accessible to play, easiest requiring a web browser. Given the amount of learning the moderate particular person does, it’s a vogue of sport that have to attract more people — and it deserves more consideration than it on the 2nd will get.

Lionkiller turn into created by Sisi Jiang. You might perhaps presumably be in a space to rating it on (Residence windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, and Android) for $10. It takes about two hours to invent.

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From The Strategist: the 10 best eco-friendly condoms and lubes

Looking for eco-friendly condoms is complicated. Kim Marks, the owner of As You Like It, a nontoxic and environmentally conscious sex shop in Eugene, Oregon, describes the concept as a Catch-22: “Condoms are onetime use, but we need them for safe sex,” she says. Matthew Nolan, the co-author of the Oh Joy Sex Toybook series who runs a website of the same name, agrees. “Condoms are super tricky,” he says. “Almost all condoms are made from latex or a latex derivative — stuff that takes forever to degrade. The best thing you can aim for is a cruelty-free, considerate condom manufacturer.” And there are a handful of companies that go the extra mile to ensure that their rubber and manufacturing processes are sustainable.

“As an FDA-approved item, condoms are highly regulated,” says Coyote Amrich, the director of purchasing and product development at Good Vibrations. “As such, there are only so many ways a condom can appeal to people looking for a more responsible brand.” There are two main companies, Glyde and Sustain, that are transparent about their manufacturing, and mostof the nine experts we spoke to recommended their condoms. And in talking about eco-friendly condoms, Marks also stresses the importance of paying attention to the lube used on them. Below are the four eco-friendly condom brands our experts recommend, along with the best vegan, organic, and cruelty-free lubes to use with them.

Best eco-friendly condoms

Glyde Ultra Thin premium condoms

Glyde condoms were the most recommended by our panelists, with Marks, Amrich, Nolan, Searah Deysach of Chicago-based sex shop Early to Bed, Zoë Ligon of Spectrum Boutique, and sex-toy reviewer and designer Venus O’Hara all recommending them by name. A certified B Corporation based in Australia, Glyde touts itself as the “first certified ethical, vegan, and fair-trade premium condom brand” and produces products that are free of glycerin, parabens, talc, and other harmful chemicals. Made from sustainably grown, non-GMO natural rubber that’s sourced from worker-owned-and-operated producers with fair-trade and labor practices, the condoms are also considered vegan because they’re free of casein, which is a dairy-derived ingredient common in many other brands. “They have been around for a long time, we trust them, and their condoms are great,” says Deysach. “I think they are a really top-notch and trustworthy company.” Glyde’s are also the “only condom certified ethical and vegan by the Vegan Society,” according to the brand.

Sustain Natural Ultra Thin latex condoms

Sustain also sells condoms that are non-GMO, vegan, fair trade, and made from natural latex. The rubber is sourced from a Forest Stewardship Council–certified plantation in southern India that provides free medical facilities for workers and schools for their children. Free of dyes, fragrances, and nitrosamine, Sustain is more “vagina friendly” and hypoallergenic, according to Ligon, who recommended the condoms along with Marks, Amrich, Nolan, and Lisa Lawless of Holistic Wisdom, a shop that specializes in nontoxic, eco-friendly sexual wellness products.

Lovability Condoms

Jenelle Marie Pierce, a spokesperson for matchmaking service PositiveSingles and the executive director of The STI Project (a website that promotes sexual health with a focus on breaking the stigma of sexually transmitted infections), recommends Lovability’s condoms, which are made with 100 percent natural vegan latex and are free of dyes, fragrances, irritating chemicals, and spermicide. Pierce, who “has seen firsthand how an STI diagnosis can strip your autonomy and make you feel as though you are not sexually healthy or deserving of pleasure,” appreciates the company’s “empowering and uplifting” messaging, saying that “they’re all about making the customer feel good about their sexual health and their pursuit of pleasure.” The FDA-approved condoms are pre-lubricated with long-lasting silicone lubrication.

Best eco-friendly latex-free condoms

Unique Latex-Free Condoms

If you prefer to use a latex-free condom, Ligon recommends the new brand Unique, which makes its condoms with synthetic polyethylene resin. The condoms, which are vegan and odorless, are a third of the thickness of other condoms and three times stronger than those made with standard latex, according to the brand. “In general, latex-free condoms are more hypoallergenic and cause fewer reactions for people (even if they don’t have a latex allergy),” Ligon says. As a bonus, Unique’s condoms come in ultra-thin packaging, which is better for the environment as there’s less waste to throw out.

Best eco-friendly personal lubricants

Sliquid H2O original water-based lubricant

“For the widest selection of body-friendly lubes, I’m a fan of Sliquid,” says Epiphora, a sex-toy reviewer and blogger at Hey Epiphora. “Their robust line features an array of water-, silicone-, and oil-based options, none of which contain potentially irritating ingredients such as glycerin or parabens.” Nolan, O’Hara, Pierce, and Jacquelyn Jones, the owner of Baltimore-based sex-toy shop Sugar, are also fans, with Jones saying the brand “uses some of the fewest ingredients and one of the safest preservatives on the market.” Epiphora and two others specifically called out this water-based H2O lube. “I love that it’s made with minimal ingredients, and it’s also body safe,” says Pierce, who adds that body safe (which generally means nontoxic and nonporous) is “especially important for people who have an STI or those who are prone to genital infections, like yeast or bacterial vaginosis, because outside chemical ingredients can interact with and disrupt the body’s natural balance of flora.” Sliquid has a base of purified water and is free of glycerin and parabens. It’s also 100 percent vegan friendly, cruelty free, and compatible for use with latex, rubber, and plastic. O’Hara, who’s vegan and avoids lubricants unless she’s using a pelvic-floor trainer, swears by Sliquid H2O because “it’s so pure.” Epiphora agrees, saying, “I love the simple, no-frills formula.” While H2O isn’t organic (Jones says there’s no such thing as organic water), Sliquid does make a line of organic lubricants that have an aloe vera base, are formulated with 95 percent organic ingredients, and are NSF certified.

Sutil Luxe original formula, 2 oz.

For another body-safe, water-based lube, Deysach recommends Hathor’s Sutil Luxe original formula, which she keeps by her bedside. She says it’s a staff favorite at her store, adding “Sutil is really gentle, pH balanced, and stays slippery for a long time.” Made with botanical eco-certified ingredients, it’s hypoallergenic and paraben and glycerin free. It also comes in biodegradable packaging, which Deysach says is rare for lube. Epiphora is also a fan of Sutil, but prefers Hathor’s Original Lubricant Pure, which has a “midrange viscosity slide.”

Aloe Cadabra Organic Personal Lubricant and Moisturizer

“When it comes to picking out a condom, you are experimenting a little bit, and that’s why picking out the lube that’s really body safe is really important,” Marks explains. “Some people need to have latex-free condoms, but other people are just reacting to the lube that the condom companies are using on their products.” If the lube that comes with your condom of choice doesn’t work for you, she suggests wiping it off and slathering it with one that does. Her choice is Aloe Cadabra, “one of the most organic lubes on the market,” she says. “It’s NSF certified and designed as this amazing menopausal and postmenopausal vaginal moisturizer, which means it’s excellent for anybody dealing with vaginal dryness or irritation.” The all-natural lube contains more than 95 percent of organic aloe vera in each tube, and is enriched with vitamin E oil and other natural ingredients to enhance its feel. It’s also vegan and pH balanced.

Good Clean Love Almost Naked Personal Lubricant

Marks also likes Good Clean Love, as it, too, is certified organic and contains aloe vera. The water-based formulation is pH balanced, free of petrochemicals, parabens, and glycerin, and is infused with lemon and vanilla for “a light flavor,” according to the product description.

Coconu oil-based organic lubricant

Coconu is an oil-based lube made from natural ingredients that Marks also recommends. The coconut oil formula is USDA-certified organic, hypoallergenic, cruelty free, and edible (it contains no alcohol, petroleum, parabens, gluten, fragrances, and dyes).

Überlube luxury lubricant

If you’re looking for a silicone-based lubricant, Pierce and Nolan both recommend Überlube. Pierce likes that it’s “body safe and has versatile applications,” but notes that it’s important that it’s not used with silicone toys, as the silicone in the lube can break down the silicone in the toy. “If you’re going to enjoy a toy with these lubricants, pick one that is not made from the same material,” she says. As far as uses, Pierce says that silicone lubes are great for all kinds of sex, noting they’re “especially great for marathon, rough, or anal activities, because they last a long time, they don’t get sticky, and their endurance helps ensure that your endurance is matched with fewer cuts and tears or discomfort from a lack of sustained lubrication.” While it isn’t organic, Überlube is made with pure silicone and a tiny bit of vitamin E for smoothness, and it contains no animal products. It’s also vegan and cruelty free. Other things it’s free of include gluten, glycerin, parabens, scents, and flavors.

Vox Media has affiliate partnerships. These do not influence editorial content, though Vox Media may earn commissions for products purchased via affiliate links. For more information, see our ethics policy.

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Saturday, February 29, 2020

First U.S. coronavirus death confirmed in Washington state

Seattle Area High School Closed For Disinfecting, After Family Member Of School Staffer Quarantined For Possible CoronavirusA do not enter sign has been taped to the door at Bothell High School in Bothell, Washington. It is closed for disinfection after a family member of a staffer was put in quarantine for possible coronavirus | Photo by David Ryder/Getty Images

A person in Washington state died after contracting the novel coronavirus, health authorities announced on Saturday. It is the first death attributed to the virus in the U.S. Officials also announced two new cases in Washington state linked to a long-term care facility, including the first confirmed case in a healthcare worker in the United States.

“We are dealing with an emergency evolving situation,” Amy Reynolds, of the Washington state health department, told the Associated Press. A spokesperson for EvergreenHealth Medical Center in King County, Washington confirmed to the AP that the patient died there. The patient who died was a man in his 50s with chronic underlying health conditions, Jeff Duchin, a health officer for Public Health, Seattle & King County said during a press conference today. It is not yet known how or when he contracted the virus.

The other two cases announced today were both linked to a long-term care facility in Washington state. One was a resident of the facility, a woman in her 70s who remains in serious condition. The other was a healthcare worker at the facility, a woman in her 40s, who officials say is in satisfactory condition. Of the 108 residents and 180 staff at the facility, 27 residents and 25 staff members have symptoms of the virus, Duchin said. Symptoms include a fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Testing to confirm whether or not those individuals have COVID-19 is underway.

Having an outbreak of the virus in a long-term nursing facility is particularly concerning for public health officials. “We are very concerned about an outbreak in a facility where there are many older people,” Duchin said. While most cases of COVID-19 are mild, elderly people and people with underlying health conditions are at greatest risk for severe symptoms of the virus.

The news of the death and the new cases comes one day after three new cases of coronavirus with unknown origin were reported in the United States. Before this week, the only confirmed cases of the virus in the country originated after a person traveled to an area of the world hard-hit by the disease, or developed after a person had close contact with a confirmed case. Cases with unknown origins are alarming to health authorities because their presence indicates that the disease is likely circulating within the population.

It is a sad day as we learn a Washingtonian has died from COVID-19. Our hearts go out to his family and friends.
We are strengthening our preparedness and response efforts to keep Washingtonians healthy, safe and informed.
Full statement:

— Governor Jay Inslee (@GovInslee) February 29, 2020

“It is a sad day in our state as we learn that a Washingtonian has died from COVID-19. Our hearts go out to his family and friends,” Jay Inslee, the governor of Washington, said in a statement. “We will continue to work toward a day where no one dies from this virus.”

The virus, which causes the disease COVID-19, has spread to 57 countries around the world since it emerged in China in December. The respiratory disease has infected more than 85,000 people and killed more than 2,900. In the United States, 66 people with COVID-19 have been identified.

Until last week, the only people who were tested for the virus in the United States were people who had traveled to areas where the virus was circulating, or who had close contact with confirmed cases. After a public backlash against the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s testing restrictions, the testing criteria were expanded. After the expansion, more cases were swiftly identified.

Even before the announcement today of a healthcare worker with COVID-19, the healthcare industry has been bracing for the virus. In California, 124 nurses and other healthcare workers at UC Davis Hospital, have been told to quarantine themselves at home, a healthcare union said on Friday. Those workers are believed to have been exposed to the virus at the hospital, where one coronavirus patient sought treatment.

Officials are currently emphasizing the need for preparedness over panic in the United States. “While there is some spread in some communities there is no national spread of COVID-19 at this time,” Nancy Messonnier, director of CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Disease said at a press conference today. Messonnier and Duchin both recommended that people take basic precautions to prevent the spread of illness. That includes staying home from work or school if you are sick, and washing your hands regularly.

“More hand-washing, less face-touching.” Duchin said.

Original Article ©Copyrights

U.S. oil and gas output in December pulled back from record highs

© Reuters. Pump jacks operate at sunset in Midland© Reuters. Pump jacks operate at sunset in Midland

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. crude oil and natural gas production pulled back in December from record highs reached a month earlier, according to monthly government data released Friday.

U.S. oil output fell to 12.78 million barrels per day in December from 12.86 million bpd in November, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in its Production Supply Monthly report. The decline was the first pull-back since July.

Output in the Gulf of Mexico fell 47,000 bpd and North Dakota production dropped by 40,000 bpd, according to a separate EIA monthly publication, known as the 914 report. Texas, the top shale producer, saw output rise by 32,000 bpd in the month.

U.S. crude production has soared due to technological advances for production from shale formations. Despite the decline in December, weekly production data from the EIA suggests that crude output has risen in January and February, setting a record of 13 million bpd.

At the same time, fuel demand fell, with both gasoline and distillate demand dropping from the previous year.

Gasoline demand in December dropped about 2.5% from a year earlier, to 8.945 million bpd. This was a steeper decline than the 1% year-on-year drop seen in November. Seven of the months in 2019 saw less gasoline demand than in same months the previous year.

Demand for distillate fuel, which includes diesel and heating oil, fell 3% from the previous year to 3.901 million bpd, compared with a 0.4 percent decline seen in November.

Monthly gross natural gas production in the U.S. Lower 48 states, meanwhile, slipped to 106.8 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd) in December from a record 107.2 bcfd in November, according to the EIA's 914 report.

That 0.4-bcfd decline in Lower 48 gas production was the first decline in seven months.

In Texas, the biggest gas producing state, output increased 0.6% to 29.4 bcfd in December. The state's monthly all-time high was 29.6 bcfd in October 2019.

In Pennsylvania, the second-biggest gas-producing state, output fell 1.9% to 19.5 bcfd in December, down from a record high 19.9 bcfd in November.

Original Article