Freeqo Talks the News – Monday, March 30th, 2020

Freeqo Talks the News – Monday, March 30th, 2020


  • Justice Department sues Anthem alleging Medicare Advantage fraud – Axios

    From Axios
    Justice Department sues Anthem alleging Medicare Advantage fraud
    The Department of Justice has sued Anthem, alleging that the health insurance company knowingly submitted inaccurate medical codes to the federal government from 2014 to 2018 as a way to get higher payments for its Medicare Advantage plans and turned “a blind eye” to coding problems.
    Why it matters: This is one of the largest Medicare Advantage fraud lawsuits to date, and federal prosecutors believe they have more than enough to evidence to claim that Anthem bilked millions of dollars from taxpayers.

  • Will colleges refund students for tuition, room & board and other related expenses? – KOMO News

    From KOMO News
    Will colleges refund students for tuition, room & board and other related expenses?
    Across the country, college students are finishing their semester online from home. Many unable to live in the dorms and eat the cafeteria meals they’ve already paid for.
    “Now the university has forced them off-campus, and students have said, ‘Well, I paid for four and half, five months of housing. I only lived there for three months. Do I get my money back for the final two months,’” said Cabot Phillips, the editor-in-chief of Campus Reform.
    Conservative watchdog group campus reform is calling on colleges and universities to give refunds for things like meals and housing.
    Some students are banding together to make demands. Thousands at UC Irvine have signed this online petition to get some of their money back.

  • Venezuela’s only telecoms satellite is lost in space – FOX Illinois

    From Fox Illinois
    Venezuela’s only telecoms satellite is lost in space
    Venezuela’s only telecommunications satellite has veered off its orbit and stopped working, creating a logistical headache for the cash-strapped South American nation.
    The Chinese-built satellite was launched among much fanfare in 2008 under the watch of former President Hugo Chavez, who said that the six-ton machine would help to “construct 21st century socialism” and contribute to Venezuela’s “independence and sovereignty.”

China and Huawei propose reinvention of the internet – FT

Welcome to the Xinernet, if China Has Its Way

China’s day of reckoning post-corona might be in the mail, but while we wait for that delivery, China pushes to take control of the internet in the name of decency and humanity, and of course you can totally trust a country with the internets that has a social credit system which determines whether you’re human or not.
They are pushing for something called the “New IP,” which would be built upon their specs and allow for all the participating vassal states to apply the same type of total police state control over their citizens that China now enjoys.
When I was a kid, I learned a trick early on when it came to getting away with doing bad things. Normalize the bad things I might do so that when I do them no one will think they’re that bad. So I advocated for the behaviors that I was most guilty of. Normalize your sins and they’re not sins anymore. This, I believe, is what China is doing, seeking to normalize the undemocratic ways of Socialism with Chinese characteristics (sort of like a nationalist version of socialism, dontcha know).
In addition to the benefit of normalizing their sins, China hopes to normalize their use of market controls to dictate to the world the terms that favor China. As nation states go, bravo to you, China, you’re playing 4d chess with checkers players, sans the Donald, who might just be as 4D chessy as you. For the nation states playing along, well, I believe you might be called Simps or Cucks of nation statism if you go along with China’s plan to continue to offer you a consumation so long as you ‘pay,’ but has no intentions of removing their metaphorical panties for you. But Simp away, world, America included, as China offers a billion consumers to foreign companies in exchange for full simp cuckery in deference to Chairman Xi.
From FT
China and Huawei propose reinvention of the internet
Telecommunications group Huawei, together with state-owned companies China Unicom and China Telecom, and the country’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), have jointly proposed a new standard for network technology base, called “New IP”, at the United Nations International. Telecommunication Union (ITU).
The proposal has raised concerns among western countries, including the United Kingdom, Sweden and the United States, who believe the system would divide the global internet and give state-run Internet service providers granular control over the use of the Internet by citizens. It has won the support of Russia, and potentially of Saudi Arabia, according to Western ITU representatives.



  • Double-walled nanotubes have electro-optical advantages –

    Oh my gosh, oh my gosh, it’s a double nanotube! Ok, that was my weak attempt at using the double rainbow moment from internets of yesteryear as my opening salvo in a tale of discovery that’s sure to get you excited about the future of nanotechnology.
    The Owls of Rice, or Rice University to you normies, have discovered the potential power of creating nested nanotubes, or, like Russian Nesting dolls, tubes inside tubes inside tubes. They’re starting off with creating one nanotube with one nested tube within it. The move could eliminate the loss of energy that occurs when negative and positive electrons jump all up on each other in that flow.
    The nested tube model keeps the negatives and positives in their own flows, uninterrupted or diminished by all that jumping around. This could potentially power up the effectiveness of nanoelectronics, including in solar power applications.

    Double-walled nanotubes have electro-optical advantages
    The Rice lab of materials theorist Boris Yakobson has now calculated the impact of curvature of semiconducting double-wall carbon nanotubes on their flexoelectric voltage, a measure of electrical imbalance between the nanotube’s inner and outer walls.
    This affects how suitable nested nanotube pairs may be for nanoelectronics applications, especially photovoltaics……
    …..”The novelty is that the inserted tube, the ‘baby’ (inside) matryoshka has all of its quantum energy levels shifted because of the voltage created by exterior nanotube,” Yakobson said. The interplay of different curvatures, he said, causes a straddling-to-staggered band gap transition that takes place at an estimated critical diameter of about 2.4 nanometers.
    “This is a huge advantage for solar cells, essentially a prerequisite for separating positive and negative charges to create a current,” Yakobson said. “When light is absorbed, an electron always jumps from the top of an occupied valence band (leaving a ‘plus’ hole behind) to the lowest state of empty conductance band.
    “But in a staggered configuration they happen to be in different tubes, or layers,” he said. “The ‘plus’ and ‘minus’ get separated between the tubes and can flow away by generating current in a circuit.”

  • Researchers find a new way in which bosons behave like fermions –

    The next time you meet a particle, do NOT assume its bosonality. Bosons may very well have the capacity to offer the same characteristics, at times, as their opposite particle, fermions. The new discovery by a crack team of Penn State researchers (my alma mater, so go LIONS!) may lead to new opportunities in the development of the great so-far unicorn, to build cost-effective quantum computers.
    Researchers find a new way in which bosons behave like fermions
    Bosons and fermions, the two classes into which all particles—from the sub-atomic to atoms themselves—can be sorted, behave very differently under most circumstances. While identical bosons like to congregate, identical fermions tend to be antisocial. However, in one dimension—imagine particles that can only move on a line—bosons can become as stand-offish as fermions, so that no two occupy the same position. Now, new research shows that the same thing—bosons acting like fermions—can happen with their velocities. The finding adds to our fundamental understanding of quantum systems and could inform the eventual development of quantum devices.


Indigenous robots to look after COVID-19 cases in Lankan hospitals – Newsin.Asia

Locally Made Robots Tend to Coronaville in Sri Lanka – A News Poem

First the news, then the poem:
From Newsin.Asia
Indigenous robots to look after COVID-19 cases in Lankan hospitals
At the Homagama Base Hospital near Colombo, indigenously manufactured robots called Automated Guided Vehicles (AGV) will be used to assist the treatment of persons suspected to have been infected by the COVID-19 virus.
The robots had been designed by the Sri Lankan company Atlas, a subsidiary of Hema’s.
It will now be possible to send medicines and other substances to the patient through these robots. Using the camera and speaker in the robot, it will now be possible to communicate with the patient without coming into close contact.
The poem:
Singularity Virality in Situ
We articulate our mechanicals,
Breathing machines.
The robot loads the viral fatigue. Hands.
Motions towards a mist of virality hunting
for air.
We rest. The robot’s test
Injects the room with craft amidst the dying and the weezing.
My hand mounts the on-switch as
the mechanical delivers the bedside manner.
Weeze, weeze, the wheels flatten the curve of the audible moans.
We are not alone anymore.
Our singularity virality sings through the packed makeshift hospital halls
where the poors and the panicked are packed and processed
by their local virus fighters, Daleks in boxes with pre-programmed
Of gold.


  • Excerpt: As the coronavirus outbreak led to a lockdown of Wuhan and its surrounding cities in late January, the Hong Kong posts were suddenly deleted. The account continued to post relentlessly in Chinese, but it now focused on the burgeoning epidemic. About a month later, her Twitter profile began to change in other ways. The reference to her college disappeared and her headshot was replaced by a generic photo of two people kissing. By the end of the week, her Twitter transformation was complete. @Kalenkayyy was now a Chinese propaganda-posting zombie account belonging to someone purportedly named Kalun Tang. News Link News Link Sourced by Obamacare.TV Read More News Curated by Obamacare.TV
  • Excerpt: Cryptocurrencies are legal in most countries, with Japan being a shining example of progressive legislation. In 2017, the Japanese government became the first country to recognize Bitcoin (BTC) as a currency and to grant official licenses to exchanges, fostering the growth of what was already one of the biggest Bitcoin markets worldwide. There are more examples of countries with crypto-friendly regulations and tax policies, but not all pro-crypto countries have developed legal frameworks quite as favorable as Portugal has, especially when it comes to taxing retail traders. News Link News Link Sourced by
  • Excerpt: In January, Google DeepMind introduced AlphaFold, a cutting-edge system that predicts the 3D structure of a protein based on its genetic sequence. In early March, the system was put to the test on Covid-19. DeepMind released protein structure predictions of several under-studied proteins associated with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, to help the research community better understand the virus. At the same time, researchers from The University of Texas at Austin and the National Institutes of Health used a popular biology technique to create the first 3D atomic scale map of the part of the virus that attaches to and infects human cells—the spike protein. The team responsible for this critical breakthrough had spent years working on other coronaviruses, including SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV. One of the predictions released by AlphaFold provided an accurate prediction for this spike structure. Another effort at the University of Washington’s Institute for Protein Design also used computer models to develop 3D atomic-scale models of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein that closely match those discovered in the UT Austin lab. They are now building on this work by creating new proteins to neutralize coronavirus. In theory, these proteins would stick to the spike protein preventing viral particles from infecting healthy cells. News Link News Link Sourced by
  • Excerpt: The United States appears to be moving ahead with new proposals to tighten the conditions for American semiconductor companies to do business with Chinese telecommunications equipment vendor Huawei Technologies, with cabinet officials agreeing at a meeting on Wednesday to tighten things up. The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday that the new rule would mean that an export licence would be needed if companies wanted to sell to Huawei many semiconductors that are produced by chip-manufacturing tools designed in the US. This would mean that the US Commerce Department could limit the sale of chips made by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company to Huawei, for use in the Chinese company’s HiSilicon chip-designing unit. Reuters was first to report this last month. News Link News Link Sourced by Obamacare.TV Read More News Curated by Obamacare.TV
  • Excerpt:   The ice giant Uranus appears to be losing a bit of its atmosphere to… News Link News Link Sourced by
  • Excerpt: A suspected subsurface ocean on Pluto might be old and deep.New analyses of images from NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft suggest that the dwarf planet has had an underground ocean since shortly after Pluto formed 4.5 billion years ago, and that the ocean may surround and… News Link News Link Sourced by


Bring in the Robot Cleaners: Travel Industry Innovations for the Pandemic – NY TImes

Coronaville Harmonizes Man and Machine and Virtual

There are robots that have been patrolling the halls of our fine institutions around America doing the hard slogging work of cleaning. This has been going on for a few years now. But now, with the advent of the age of Coronaville, social distancing and shelter in place has created opportunities for automation that will NOT be met with cries of “but what about muh jobs.” The robots are expanding their territory.
Xenex Disinfection Services is now pushing out a significant number of new robot cleaners that have been equipped with the power of super lights to kill Coronaville on the surfaces where they might be.
There are travel agencies now offering virtual vacations, and folks are buying them. There are photographers that are creating virtual photo shoots for people remotely to experience.
I wrote a poem the other day called “The Virus is a light.” In that poem, I was talking about the light the virus shows on who we really are to each other, who we really are to ourselves. But the virus is a light in another sense as well, a light on the technical reality matched with our assumed reality of what is and what could be.
Coronaville is revealing the fat of our markets, which, in this case, is mostly about the reality that humans don’t need to do nearly as many physically dangerous and draining work as they have up to now. It’s also revealing that humans need not leave the ‘safety’ and economic practicality of working from home in areas that, currently, we still insist on having people add, in some instances, 2-3, or even more, hours of drive time every day, just to put themselves in a physical space that you do not need to occupy.
Coronaville is hastening the more ‘practical’ merging of tech reality with assumed reality, and the world will never be the same. What we are experiencing right now with this shutdown, this social distancing, is NOT the new normal. Humans, fundamentally, are social animals, and we WILL return to social face-to-face action, but we are going to experience, on the other side of Coronaville, a new normal, one that reduces our physical investment in work across multiple spheres, from outright replacing human labor to reducing physical requirements like driving to work every day.
The dark times we are in are indeed dark and challenging, and people have been dying, and will continue to die for some time. But at the end of Coronaville, there is new opportunity, new hope, that we as a society will more pragmatically resolve the reality of tech with our perceived reality.
From NYTimes
Bring in the Robot Cleaners: Travel Industry Innovations for the Pandemic
LightStrike Germ-Zapping Robots — already in use at more than 400 hospitals in the United States, according to their manufacturer Xenex Disinfection Services — use xenon ultraviolet light pulses to kill viruses, bacteria and fungi. Peer-reviewed studies published by the company have found the robots have decreased environmental infection rates between 50 and 100 percent.
“To provide our guests and clients with an additional level of well-being, we decided to add another step to our current disinfectant protocol by implementing the germ-zapping UV light robots,” wrote Archit Sanghvi, the vice president of operations for Pearl Hospitality, the hotel’s owner and operator, in an email.



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