In a week where half the world is taking the advice of their respective governments and staying home a lot more, I have been sat at home coughing, fending off heavy headaches and wheezing my way around the apartment.
I’ve not been tested, but can’t help but wonder if I have had the newly-famed COVID-19 or not. Either way, things will get better.
In the meantime, here are some new things to look at with your eyes and minds:
Don’t touch your face
As this beautifully made Kurzgesagt video explains, touching your face is sending germs and viruses on a highway to the inside of your body. That is why the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommend that you don’t touch your face.
But not touching your face is hard. I touch my face all the time without knowing it.
Do Not Touch Your Face (dot com) is a website which checks your webcam and will tell you to not touch your face when you touch your face.
The geeky rundown is that it uses machine learning based on TensorFlow.js code. You give the algorithm a one-time lesson on when you are touching your face and then it works it out itself from there.
Play the Game of Thrones card game online
Quite a few times throughout the history of this blog, I have mentioned the card game A Game of Thrones. I love it and have spent way too much money on it.
I recently discovered that there is a free online version of the game and so during the past week have played a few games.
The design of the site is pretty confusing and the game isn’t the most straight-forward game to play. But once you’ve learned the ropes, it’s very fun.
If, during these self-isolation times, friends of mine wish to hop on a Skype call and play through a game together – give me a shout.
Blocking ads but still rewarding content creators
Whilst I’m a big advocate of Firefox web browser, I have been attracted by Brave web browser recently – purely for the integration of digital cash. It’s interesting.
The app has a wallet for digital cash. You can top it up with money yourself or get paid BAT tokens (10 BAT is worth about $1.20 at the moment) for seeing adverts.
The great thing about this is that if you have digital cash in your wallet, then each month the browser divvies up a handful of cash between the websites you have visited. Provided your favourite websites are signed up as content creators.
There are many sites registered as content creators – including the likes of The Guardian, Wikipedia and Archive.org.
This means that even though I’m blocking all the adverts The Guardian want to show me, I end up throwing The Guardian some BAT tokens out of my Brave wallet each month for the content I viewed.
It’s clever. Maybe I’ll do a full blog post about it in future. In the meantime, you can check out Brave yourself.
A painting of coronavirus from a molecular scientist
The image used at the top of this page has been crafted by molecular scientist and artist David S. Goodsell. The painting depicts a coronavirus just entering the lungs, surrounded by mucus secreted by respiratory cells, secreted antibodies, and several small immune systems proteins.
Goodsell has declared the image as “free to use” and published a super high-resolution version on a little thing you might have heard of before: the internet.
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