‘Are we ready?’ LAUSD’s first day back to school, online and on Zoom, is anything but normal

Elva Mankin

Xavier Reyes, cofounder of Alta Public Schools, shows what a classroom would look like at Academia Moderna, a charter school, when the Huntington Park campus is allowed to reopen. <span class=(Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/WAXbhzIEm6xUXIu7eoZQQw–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTcwNTtoPTQ3MA–/https://s.yimg.com/uu/api/res/1.2/Sz8LdC2W1c6LuvQzbJ3NgA–~B/aD01NjA7dz04NDA7c209MTthcHBpZD15dGFjaHlvbg–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/la_times_articles_853/99594ae15b9f32c46a698c216d779f26″ data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/WAXbhzIEm6xUXIu7eoZQQw–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTcwNTtoPTQ3MA–/https://s.yimg.com/uu/api/res/1.2/Sz8LdC2W1c6LuvQzbJ3NgA–~B/aD01NjA7dz04NDA7c209MTthcHBpZD15dGFjaHlvbg–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/la_times_articles_853/99594ae15b9f32c46a698c216d779f26″/
Xavier Reyes, cofounder of Alta Public Schools, shows what a classroom would look like at Academia Moderna, a charter school, when the Huntington Park campus is allowed to reopen. (Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)

New back-to-school shoes, but no recess to run around. Decorative Zoom backgrounds instead of artwork newly stapled on bulletin boards. Freshly waxed floors with no students to scuff them up.

A new school year like no other begins Tuesday in Los Angeles when some 500,000 students are expected to sign on and show up

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Tech fuelled ‘everything’s awesome’ rally looks unstoppable

Elva Mankin

By Saikat Chatterjee and Thyagaraju Adinarayan

LONDON (Reuters) – Today’s $72 trillion question for investors: To buy or not to buy into the global equities rally? Notwithstanding inflated share prices, politics and the pandemic, the answer from many is a resounding “yes.”

That’s not just because unprecedented stimulus – $20 trillion and counting – is forcing a structural change in how financial assets are valued.

It’s also down to years of societal shifts, innovation and now, the pandemic, which could transform forever the way people work, study and shop – playing into the dominant hand of tech stocks.

So while

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Pandemic forces Malaysian palm industry to rethink reliance on foreign labour

Elva Mankin

By Mei Mei Chu

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) – Malaysia’s palm oil producers are embarking on a rare recruitment drive to hire locals and accelerating industry mechanisation as they grapple with a severe shortage of foreign labour due to the coronavirus pandemic.

As the September-November peak production season approaches, companies are erecting banners near plantations and posting online job advertisements boasting free housing, free water and other perks of estate life in a bid to lure workers to do everything from driving tractors to harvesting.

Already, travel and movement restrictions have left the world’s second-largest palm oil producer grappling with a

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These Back-to-School Discounts & Freebies Will Take the Load Off (A Little) This Year

Elva Mankin

There’s a whole lot changing about education this year, but one thing remains the same: Parents spend a lot of money on our children at this time of year, so we need all the help from back-to-school discounts and freebies we can get. Some of us might be buying two sets of school supplies — one for home school and one for school school — and some of us have the pleasure of setting up our college-age kids’ classrooms in their bedrooms as schools opt for remote-learning for one more semester. Regardless of where they’ll be learning this fall, some

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How Virtual Concert Platform Wave Plans to Save Live Music

Elva Mankin

Eight years ago when Tupac Shakur’s hologram was billed to perform at Coachella, the idea seemed almost unthinkable to most. But now as the coronavirus pandemic continues, artists and fans are increasingly turning to live streaming platforms and companies like Wave, a Culver City-based software firm that creates avatars of the musicians and hosts them at virtual online concerts. Wave is trying to capitalize on the unique situation that puts their tech in high demand: It’s not every year that nearly all in-person concerts get canceled at once. Similar to recent efforts at Epic Games, which brought in 12 million

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Antiviral apparel? Here’s what experts say about clothing that is said to kill COVID-19

Elva Mankin

Brands are rolling out apparel made of fabrics with antiviral technology in an effort to slow the spread of coronavirus. But is the clothing necessary?

In March, Swiss textile group HeiQ announced it had developed a treatment for textiles called Viroblock NPJ03 that it says is antiviral and antimicrobial.

The company said the treatment — an “invisible film” for fabrics, per Vogue — reduces 99.9% of SARS-CoV-2 after 30 minutes, the virus that causes COVID-19.

Artistic Denim Mills, a denim and garment manufacturer based in Pakistan, announced in June that it would partner with HeiQ to treat its products with

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Should teachers be considered essential workers?

Elva Mankin

“The 360” shows you diverse perspectives on the day’s top stories and debates.

What’s happening

As the coronavirus pandemic began to hit the United States, schools shut down and moved online for the remainder of spring for the safety of their teachers and students. Now, with a new academic year on the horizon, schools are trying to decide whether to send teachers and students back to classrooms in person, continue online instruction or use a hybrid model.

Federal guidelines for what’s considered an essential worker — those whose jobs are necessary to keep society functioning even when much of the

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Christian leaders debate how to do church amid pandemic

Elva Mankin

On a recent Sunday, Rod Loy, senior pastor at the First Assembly of God in North Little Rock, Arkansas, delivered the message of the Gospel through his computer screen.

“It’s easy to live out your faith when everything is going good,” he preached to his congregation. “But the real test is difficult. How does your faith hold up when the doctor gives you a bad report, the kids get bad grades and you can’t pay your bills? How does your faith hold up when you lose your job in the middle of a pandemic? The true test of faith is

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Why Christopher Nolan’s ‘Tenet’ Represents a Big Piracy Risk Around the World

Elva Mankin

Christopher Nolan’s sci-fi epic “Tenet” is charting a new course for blockbusters during the pandemic by opening in foreign territories before it lands in the U.S.

However, many of the factors that make “Tenet” the milestone film in the cinema industry’s post-coronavirus road to recovery are simultaneously elements that expose it to piracy. That runs the risk that a thriller that thrives on keeping its twists under wraps will have its secrets exposed before domestic audiences have a chance to watch it.

More from Variety

“In some ways ‘Tenet’ is a perfect storm for piracy, in that it has raised

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Why you really should get your flu shot this year; video shows maskless Georgia partiers; US passes 170K deaths

Elva Mankin

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is calling on House lawmakers to return this week to vote on a bill that would block the changes that the Trump administration has made to the U.S. Postal Service. 

Pelosi and other Democrats say the changes will cause a slowing of the flow of mail and potentially jeopardize the November election. Pelosi’s request comes after a testy few days over the Postal Service and whether it’s up to handling an unprecedented number of mail-in ballots this year because of increased vote-by-mail eligibility amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Meanwhile, public health officials are urging the public to

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The algorithms that make big decisions about your life

Elva Mankin

student protesting
student protesting

Thousands of students in England are angry about the controversial use of an algorithm to determine this year’s GCSE and A-level results.

They were unable to sit exams because of lockdown, so the algorithm used data about schools’ results in previous years to determine grades.

It meant about 40% of this year’s A-level results came out lower than predicted, which has a huge impact on what students are able to do next. GCSE results are due out on Thursday.

There are many examples of algorithms making big decisions about our lives, without us necessarily knowing how or when

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Life online: Subscribe to everything, own nothing

Elva Mankin

One of the reasons Fernish and Feather consider themselves “subscription” services rather than simple rentals is that they claim the level of service is significantly higher. The furniture is shipped directly to your door complete with white glove delivery; they either come pre-assembled or they’ll set it up themselves. When you have to move, they’ll even move the furniture for you. Returning and swapping out furniture is also generally allowed if you’re willing to pay for it. So if you like, you could swap out the yellow couch for a blue one if you so choose. 

And if you don’t

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Why you really should get your flu shot this year; New Zealand delays election; US nears 170K deaths

Elva Mankin

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Sunday called on House lawmakers to return this week to vote on a bill that would block the changes that the Trump administration has made to the U.S. Postal Service. 

Pelosi and other Democrats say the changes will cause a slowing of the flow of mail and potentially jeopardize the November election. Pelosi’s request comes after a testy few days over the Postal Service and whether it’s up to the test of handling an unprecedented number of mail-in ballots this year due to increased vote-by-mail eligibility amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Meanwhile, public health officials are

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Bitcoin DeFi May Be Unstoppable, What Does It Look Like?

Elva Mankin

One of the quietest yet best-funded bitcoin companies in the world is gearing up to enter the 2020 decentralized finance (DeFi) bull run. 

In July the DG Lab conglomerate, which like Ethereum powerhouse ConsenSys includes both an investment arm and an adjacent software company, open sourced its proposal for self-sovereign derivatives trading on the Bitcoin blockchain, using the Lightning Network. 

These contracts turn bitcoin, the asset itself, into programmable money capable of a wider variety of functions. 

Related: Ex-Prudential Securities CEO Calls Bitcoin a ‘Safe Haven’

This offers a stark contrast to the typical DeFi approach so far, which relies

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COVID-19 will hit colleges when students arrive for fall semester. So why open at all? Money is a factor.

Elva Mankin

Colleges that are reopening campuses this fall know they’re bringing a higher risk of coronavirus to their community.

The questions aren’t really about if or when, but about how bad outbreaks could be — and whether having an in-person experience for students is worth the cost. With so much at stake, some students, parents and faculty are asking: Why take the risk at all? 

In many cases, it comes back to money. 

For months, colleges and experts have warned another semester of remote courses could have disastrous effects on student enrollment and college budgets.

Colleges already lost billions of dollars

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Master blockchain with this cheap online course

Elva Mankin

Master blockchain with this cheap online course
Master blockchain with this cheap online course

TL;DR: The Mega Blockchain Mastery Bundle is on sale for £29.81 as of August 17, saving you 97% on list price.

Cash isn’t necessarily king anymore. You’ve probably heard that cryptocurrency and blockchain technologies (which power things like Bitcoin and Ethereum) aren’t going anywhere.

But what exactly is blockchain? And how does it make cryptocurrency possible? That’s a question even some of your savviest friends might not be able to fully explain.

SEE ALSO: Improve your memory with this heavily discounted course

Cue the Mega Blockchain Mastery Bundle, a set of online courses

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Regions Financial (RF) Up 9% Since Last Earnings Report: Can It Continue?

Elva Mankin

It has been about a month since the last earnings report for Regions Financial (RF). Shares have added about 9% in that time frame, outperforming the S&P 500.

Will the recent positive trend continue leading up to its next earnings release, or is Regions Financial due for a pullback? Before we dive into how investors and analysts have reacted as of late, let’s take a quick look at its most recent earnings report in order to get a better handle on the important drivers.

Regions Reports Q2 Loss, Provisions Up on Coronavirus Woes

Regions Financial reported second-quarter 2020 adjusted loss

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‘Emotional support K-pop boys’ help fans with their mental health

Elva Mankin

‘Emotional support K-pop boys’ help fans with their mental health
‘Emotional support K-pop boys’ help fans with their mental health

“Every time I see him I feel like the sun is shining on my face.”

L. Gissele has three emotional support K-pop boys: Kim Namjoon aka RM from BTS, Bang Chan from Stray Kids, and Johnny Suh from NCT 127.

NEXT STORY:

“[Namjoon’s] words speak to me and he motivates me to always do better and to aim big. To always challenge myself,” the 18-year-old Panamanian told Mashable via DM. “[Chan] has been there for me at my lowest point in life. He makes me remember that depression does not

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5 lasting changes from the COVID-19 pandemic

Elva Mankin

COVID-19 has completely changed life, and while many hope those changes are temporary, the pandemic has unearthed weaknesses in the status quo. After every major crisis, humanity is forced to identify those weaknesses and evolve accordingly. The 2020 pandemic, in its aftermath, is set to change life for a very long time. Here are five fundamental ways.

1. Employment: More automation

The pandemic has helped identify work roles that can be downsized or replaced with technology as a technique to mitigate infection risk while retaining productivity.

“Online [ordering] has become the lifeline both for consumers looking for products [and] also

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California avoided rolling blackouts for two decades. What went wrong on the grid?

Elva Mankin

For nearly two decades, California skated past one heat wave after another without having to resort to deliberate rolling blackouts — including one horrible stretch that killed 140 people in 2006.

The state’s electricity winning streak ran out Friday night.

For more than three hours, amid 100-degree weather in much of the state, hundreds of thousands of Californians were subjected to one-hour blackouts designed to keep the electricity grid from completely melting down. It marked the first rolling blackouts in California since the 2001 energy crisis, when the state was victimized by rogue energy traders from Enron Corp. and other

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