Today's News Shots

Coronavirus has killed 1 million people globally

Nine months after coronavirus broke out in China, it has killed 1 million people worldwide, according to data from John Hopkins University. Experts believe the actual toll could be much higher if the recorded plus unrecorded deaths are considered. The trend of death and infections is still worrying in the five worst-hit countries - U.S., Brazil, India, Mexico, and U.K.

Read More at NPR -National Public Radio

NASA plans the first Crew Dragon operational flight for Halloween

NASA and SpaceX have planned to launch Crew Dragon's first crewed operational flight for October 31. Earlier, they were planning to launch it on October 23 but they decided to delay it to give the ground and station teams some more preparation time. "The new target date will deconflict the Crew-1 launch and arrival from upcoming Soyuz launch and landing operations," NASA stated.

Read More at Engadget

Hacker leaks confidential information after school district refuses to pay ransom

Hackers may have got access to confidential information about former and current staff and students of the Clark County School District (CCSD) in Las Vegas. It was attacked by hackers three days after it reopened on August 24. The hackers published documents comprising Social Security numbers, student grades and other confidential information as the officials refused to pay the ransom, as per a report.

Read More at CNN

Breonna Taylor shooting: Bodycam footage shows officers violating policies

Video footage captured by 45 body cameras shows that the 7 Louisville officers who undertook the operation were not immediately assigned escort officers after Taylor's shooting. Officers involved in a death or serious injury following the use of force should be assigned an escort officer under department policy. Officer Brett Hankison was fired by the department following the shooting.

Read More at Fox News

Pelosi, Mnuchin push for stimulus deal

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin are making a final attempt to finalize a Covid-19 package. Pelosi and her top lieutenants unveiled a $2.2 Trillion plan, which is too high for the White House and Senate Republicans. Some Democrats are also unhappy with Pelosi. "If it's a messaging exercise, it's worthless," Rep. Dean Phillips said.

Read More at CNN

Google now wants 30% cut of Play Store revenue

Google has given app developers time until September 30, 2021, to complete "technical work" to integrate Google's billing system. This means developers can collect direct payments from users without paying Google its 30% till next year. Developers who have already integrated the system will now need to use Google Play's billing system for its 30% fees.

Read More at Gizmodo

Microsoft 365 services are coming back after major outage

The outage affected user's access to multiple services including Outlook, which was restored later. At first, Microsoft attributed the outage to a recent change in the platform but later indicated that it was not observing an increase in connection after rolling back the change. The affected services included,, Power Platform, Dynamics365, and Microsoft Teams including Teams Live Event.

Read More at CNN

NYC threatens to impose lockdown amid surge in Covid cases

Eight neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Queens have been identified as potential targets for new lockdowns. The measures include shutting down all non-essential businesses, banning gatherings of groups of more than 10, closing private schools and daycare centers breaching safety requirements, harsh fines for those who refuse to wear masks. New York recorded a positivity rate of 1.5%, the highest since mid-July.

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CDC issues guidelines for celebrating Thanksgiving during pandemic

The CDC has listed activities of three risk levels. The list of low-risk activities includes online shopping and video calls with the family. Moderate-risk activities such as visiting pumpkin patches, and playing outdoor sports have to be done using precautions such as masks and hand sanitizers. High-risk activities include participating in a crowded race or attending crowded parades.

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5 miles of Florida beach turns slimy with oil after Hurricane Sally

The Florida beach has been polluted with oil two weeks after Hurricane Sally, with oil samples collected to determine the source. The storm might have whipped up submerged oil from the Gulf of Mexico's 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill or pressed the oil from some other source. "We want to get it cleaned up as fast as possible," said the U.S. Coast Guard.

Read More at HuffPost

Trump campaign aide Brad Parscale seen tackled by police

Bodycam footage released by police depicted Parscale being taken to the hospital after allegedly threatening to harm himself. A shirtless Parscale was seen in the video saying "Didn't do anything" while being handcuffed. Parscale's wife, Candice, was also seen talking to police about her husband having some firearms, including a rifle and a shotgun.

Read More at Fox News

California legislators ask Governor to reopen Disneyland, Universal Studios

Nearly 18 California state senators and assembly members wrote a letter to Governor Gavin Newsom on Monday asking to issue guidelines to reopen theme parks. This comes one week after Newsom promised he would issue guidelines soon. "I encourage you to treat theme parks like you would other sectors and help us reopen." wrote Disney Parks new chairman Josh D'Amaro.

Read More at Deadline

Know which astronaut will cast her vote from the space station

Astronaut Kate Rubins will cast her ballot from the International Space Station 200 miles above the Earth. Rubins was the first person to sequence DNA in space and will be completing a six-month mission on the International Space Station in November. After casting her vote, Rubins' ballot will be forwarded electronically from Mission Control in Houston with her address listed as "low-Earth orbit."

Read More at The Optimist Daily

LVMH files countersuit against Tiffany

LVMH filed a countersuit against Tiffany in a bid to walk away from the $16.2 billion takeover. The countersuit stated that LVMH "continues to have full confidence in its position that the conditions necessary to close the acquisition of Tiffany have not been met." The firm also mentioned the threat of US tariff on French goods and Tiffany's request for the extension of the deal's deadline.

Read More at CNBC

Inovio Covid-19 vaccine trials halted due to FDA inquiry

The phase 2/3 clinical trials for the INO-4800 Covid-19 vaccine have been halted because the FDA has additional questions about the CELLECTRA 2000 injection device used in the testing. Inovio said it is laboring to answer FDA's questions and plans to respond in October. FDA will have up to 30 days to finalize a decision after Inovio's response.

Read More at The Motley Fool

Bill introduced to count mail-in ballots within 24 hours of Election Day

The Verifiable, Orderly, & Timely Election Results (VOTER) Act, introduced by Senator Rick Scott, demands particular standards for vote-by-mail systems. If the bill is passed, all votes received (in-person and mailed-in) within one hour of closing polls would have to be identified to determine "the total universe of votes to be counted in the election."

Read More at Fox News

New findings give scientists hope for multiple sclerosis treatment

Bexarotene, the cancer drug, was found to restore the myelin sheath, the target of the autoimmune disorder multiple sclerosis, in phase 2 clinical trial. Myelin sheath is a protective fat layer around nerves in the spinal cord and brain. It is targeted by immune cells in patients of MS. The trial indicated bexarotene can effectively "remyelinate" the damaged nerves.

Read More at Good News Network

Former Amazon employee and family charged with insider trading

The SEC has charged a former finance manager at Amazon with insider trading. The SEC claimed that the senior manager in the company's tax department obtained highly confidential information and tipped off her husband between January 2016 and July 2018. Her husband and his father did trades on 11 different accounts using the information and earned $1.4 million illegally.

Read More at Fox Business

Elon Musk plans IPO for SpaceX's Starlink business

The idea was floated by SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell of spinning Starlink off for an IPO in the coming years. SpaceX is racing to build out its Starlink satellite constellation to offer broadband internet commercially by end of 2020. Musk, in his tweet, said that he is a "huge fan" of small retail investors and will ensure they get top priority.

Read More at Reuters

Suspected ransomware attack hits hospital network

Universal Health Services (UHS) said its computer network was down due to an "IT security issue." A UHS employee said he saw files renamed during the attack to include a. ryk extension (Ryuk ransomware). UHS hospitals are now filing patient information using pen and paper. UHS operates around 400 healthcare facilities across the U.S. and U.K.

Read More at Engadget

Stocks update: Piedmont gains on Tesla deal; Inovio plunges 28% on FDA block

Nasdaq Composite rose nearly 2% just before 3 p.m. EDT. Piedmont rallied after the company signed an agreement with Tesla to supply 1/3 of the planned production of 160,000 MT of lithium-containing concentrate for five years. Inovio stocks plunged 28% as FDA halted the clinical trials of the Covid-19 vaccine INO-4800, leading to a month's delay for manufacturing plans.

Read More at The Motley Fool

World's largest jet engine certified for commercial use

Boeing 777X the largest commercial jet engine powered by the General Electric GE9x was approved by FAA. The huge jet engine developed to power the wide-body airliner and made of 16 blades- 134 inches fan's diameter can carry 384 to 436 passengers. Scheduled until 2022, it delivers 110,000 pounds takeoff thrust the quietest GE engine ever produced, and delivers 10% lower fuel consumption.

Read More at CNET

Sexual assault filed against Nikola founder Trevor Milton

The 38-year-old billionaire was accused by two women of sexually assaulting them at the age of 15. Milton's cousin Aubrey Ferrin Smith accused him of groping her in 1999 and a second woman accused Milton while working as an assistant in a security company he was running in 2004. Milton's spokesperson  "strongly denied" stating them as false allegations.

Read More at CNBC

BTS to become millionaires after label goes public

Big Hit Entertainment may raise over $820 million with the sale of 7.13 million new shares when it is listed on Korea's Stock Exchange (KOSPI) on October 15. Big Hit's current market valuation is about $4.1 billion. Each of the seven BTS members has 68,385 shares. BTS generated 97% of Big Hit's sales last year, and 88% this year.

Read More at BBC

World's first foldable PC by Lenovo

The ThinkPad X1 Fold is a 13-inch OLED laptop screen starting at $2,499. The Fold can be used as a large tablet when unfolded the screen can be divided into two adjacent displays. Fold up horizontally is a 13-inch notebook, optional detachable keyboard and easel stand. It weighs 2.2 pounds, with 5G support and a 50Wh battery.

Read More at The Verge

Queensland approves $1bn coalmine in Galilee Basin

Pembroke Resources was granted mining leases for 25,000 hectares Olive Downs coking coal project by the state government. The company is expected to hire 1,000 people to mine the coking coal used in steelmaking. It is forecasted to provide the state with $5.5bn in royalties and be in operation for 79 years. Pembroke will contribute $100,000 annually to a regional environment fund for 10 years.

Read More at The Guardian

China declares emergency as boy contracts plague

A three-year-old boy in Menghai, Yunnan contracted the deadly Bubonic plague, prompting China to announce a level-IV emergency to avoid another outbreak. The young boy is now in a stable condition. A rat infestation has been reported in the village of Xiding, Menghai and three plague-ridden rats have been found in the village in Yunnan.

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Kansas City wins as Mahomes scores five touchdowns

NFL Quarterback Patrick Mahomes led the Kansas City Chiefs to victory beating the Baltimore Ravens on Monday Night Football. Ravens' quarterback Lamar Jackson showed hopeful results at the beginning of the game but the Chiefs' impressive defense led them to claim a 34-20 victory. The Chiefs will return home in Week 4 to host the New England Patriots.

Read More at CBA Sports

Researchers discover ancient underground lakes on Mars

Three water-filled ponds beneath the dry and dusty planet's southern ice cap were discovered by researchers from Roma Tre University, Italy using radar data from the European Space Agency (ESA) Mars Express orbiter. ESA said the lakes might be millions of years old. The largest lake is about 19-miles (30-kilometers) across with a series of smaller ponds surrounding it.

Read More at CNET

Coach Doc Rivers to leave LA Clippers

Owner Steve Ballmer and team president Lawrence Frank must now replace a successful coach Doc Rivers. Rivers won just three playoff series in seven years despite having excellent talent throughout most of his tenure. His teams repeatedly blew leads, including two 3-1 series stains -- this year to the Denver Nuggets and to the Houston Rockets in 2015.

Read More at ESPN

Nordstrom to ban exotic animal skins sale

The sale of exotic animal skins like snakeskin, crocodile leather, or genuine fur has been banned by the luxury store chain by end of 2021. Considering customer demand for change and in partnership with the Humane Society of the United States, it impacts both online and in-store sales. Nordstrom aims to continually evolve the merchandise offering to ensure meeting its needs.

Read More at Fashionista

A teacher covered in tattoos

35-year-old Sylvain Helaine who taught at the Docteur Morere Elementary School in Palaiseau, Paris is now allowed to teach only kids above the age of six years after the parents of a three-year-old complained that the child suffered nightmares after looking at Helaine. Helaine is covered in tattoos and has surgically altered his eyes to appear black.

Read More at Fox News

Flowers are changing colors to adjust with climate change

Research at Clemson University indicates that like plants and animals, flowers too have adapted to global warming and declining ozone in the last 75 years by changing ultraviolet (UV) pigments in their pastels. Flowers can be harmed by UV rays that damage pollen. The more UV absorbent pigment they have, the less penetration from harmful radiation into their sensitive cells.

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