Behavioral science is key to making the UK’s track and trace app a success

Originally planned to roll out in May, the UK’s track and trace app has now been delayed until winter. Part of the government’s wider test, track and trace strategy, the app uses Bluetooth on smartphones to see who infected people have been in close contact with, and uses this information to message people at potential risk of infection. The app will require high levels of engagement from lots of people if it’s to be useful. So, while the delay is disappointing, it’s also an opportunity to incorporate knowledge from behavioral science into the app’s design and the communications around it,… This story continues at The Next Web...
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Why girls are less likely to pursue a career in STEM — even though they score just as high as boys at school

Last month, the Australian Academy of Science published a report showing the COVID-19 pandemic would disproportionately affect women in the STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) disciplines. The report noted before COVID-19, around 7,500 women were employed in STEM research fields in Australia in 2017, compared to around 18,400 men. The authors wrote: The pandemic appears to be compounding pre-existing gender disparity; women are under-represented across the STEM workforce, and weighted in roles that are typically less senior and less secure. Job loss at a greater rate than for men is now an immediate threat for many women in Australia’s… This story continues at The Next Web...
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How does your driving speed affect your car’s emissions?

Every car has an optimal speed range that results in minimum fuel consumption, but this range differs between vehicle types, design and age. Typically it looks like this graph below: fuel consumption rises from about 80km/h, partly because air resistance increases. But speed is only one factor. No matter what car you are driving, you can reduce fuel consumption (and therefore emissions) by driving more smoothly. This includes anticipating corners and avoiding sudden braking, taking the foot off the accelerator just before reaching the peak of a hill and cruising over it, and removing roof racks or bull bars and… This story continues at The Next Web...
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Large doses of vitamin D may protect you from COVID-19 — but it’s also toxic

It has been suggested that taking vitamin D may protect people from getting COVID-19. But should we be using supplements to ward off the virus? We need to separate fact from fiction. Vitamin D is essential for maintaining overall health, especially for bones, teeth, and muscles. It regulates the body’s stores of calcium and phosphate and helps us maintain a healthy immune system. While we can get vitamin D from oily fish, egg yolks, red meat, and supplemented foods in our diet, the vast majority of vitamin D in the body is produced in the skin due to sunlight exposure.… This story continues at The Next Web...
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Inside China’s plan to lead the world in AI

China announced in 2017 its ambition to become the world leader in artificial intelligence (AI) by 2030. While the US still leads in absolute terms, China appears to be making more rapid progress than either the US or the EU, and central and local government spending on AI in China is estimated to be in the tens of billions of dollars. The move has led – at least in the West – to warnings of a global AI arms race and concerns about the growing reach of China’s authoritarian surveillance state. But treating China as a “villain” in this way… This story continues at The Next Web...
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New research finds fitness tracker data could predict your marathon performance

Welcome to Riding Nerdy, TNW’s fortnightly dive into bicycle-based tech, where we go into too much detail and geek out on all things related to pedal-powered gadgets. Eliud Kipchoge last year became the first athlete to run a marathon in under two hours after much training and careful preparation. Regardless of whether you’re aiming for a new world record or you just want to achieve a respectable time for your age, if you’re training for a marathon you might well want to know what you’re on course to accomplish. There are so many different equations claiming to predict marathon performance. But… This story continues at The Next Web...
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The lack of women in cybersecurity puts us all at greater risk

Women are highly underrepresented in the field of cybersecurity. In 2017, women’s share in the U.S. cybersecurity field was 14%, compared to 48% in the general workforce. The problem is more acute outside the U.S. In 2018, women accounted for 10% of the cybersecurity workforce in the Asia-Pacific region, 9% in Africa, 8% in Latin America, 7% in Europe and 5% in the Middle East. Women are even less well represented in the upper echelons of security leadership. Only 1% of female internet security workers are in senior management positions. I study online crime and security issues facing consumers, organizations… This story continues at The Next Web...
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Digital poetry — 5 ways to combine human and computer languages

Since lockdown, everyone has had to rely heavily on digital technologies: be it Zoom work meetings and lengthy email chains, gaming and streaming services for entertainment, or social media platforms to organize everything from groceries to protests. Human existence is now permeated by non-human computer language. This includes poetry. Digital technologies can disseminate and publish contemporary poetry, and also create it. Digital artists combine human and computer languages to create digital poetry, which can be grouped into at least five genres. 1. Generative poetry Generative poems use a program or algorithm to generate poetic text from a database of words… This story continues at The Next Web...
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Apple dictating countries’ contact-tracing app policies won’t help its EU anti-trust probe

There’s a growing problem with Apple’s role in the contact-tracing apps that countries are developing to help fight the coronavirus pandemic. This has been underlined by the UK’s announcement that its long-awaited NHSx app is being parked in favor of a different model recommended by Apple and Google. Apple is effectively dictating to governments the privacy levels that their contact-tracing apps must meet. Unless apps meet Apple’s requirements, they can’t get access to Bluetooth in the background on users’ phones, which is essential for the apps to work properly (Google takes a more laissez-faire approach, without these restrictions). Apple’s approach… This story continues at The Next Web...
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Autonomous taxi firms can’t afford to forget about disabled passengers

Autonomous vehicles (AVs), like self-driving taxis, continue to garner media attention as industry and political stakeholders claim that they will improve safety and access to transportation for everyone. But for people who have different mobility needs and rely on human drivers for work beyond the task of driving, the prospect of driverless taxis may not sound like progress. Unless accommodations are built into autonomous vehicle designs, companies risk undermining transportation access for the very communities this technology is promising to include. The promise A January 2020 joint report issued by the National Science and Technology Council and U.S. Department of… This story continues at The Next Web...
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