For the first six months of the pandemic, the US lagged behind dozens of other countries in rolling out apps to alert citizens when they’ve come in contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19. But states are finally rolling out a wave of apps based on open-source software that has made their proliferation faster and cheaper.
Now people just need to download them.
The most recent additions to the canon are New York and New Jersey, which each launched apps on Oct. 1. By the next day, iPhone and Android users had installed the New York app about 250,000 times.
Since August, seven other US states and Guam have launched exposure notification apps. Four of them—New York, New Jersey, Delaware, and Pennsylvania—were built using open-source code from the Linux Foundation Public Health (LFPH) initiative, which is freely available to any government that wants to crib from it to develop its own app. In September, Apple and Google announced an “exposure notification express” program to allow states to launch apps without doing any in-house coding at all.
Jenny Wanger, who works with LFPH to help US states get their coronavirus apps off the ground, says eight more state apps are likely to launch by the end of October. “They’re going to be able to do it at this point quite quickly and easily and cheaply,” she said, noting that states no longer need to hire developers to build new apps from scratch. “I would hope by the end of the year to see the majority of US states with exposure notification technology.”
All US state apps
Gmail mistakenly removed the button that lets you triage loads of emails at once, but it’s coming back
If you’re not the inbox zero type — and I’m definitely not — you might sometimes rely on Gmail’s “Select all conversations that match this search” option to read, archive, or delete hundreds or thousands of messages at once.
Except we can’t do that anymore, and neither can a number of angry Gmail users we’ve spotted. The option has up and disappeared. Google accidentally removed it, the company confirms to The Verge.
@gmail Hey, how come there’s no longer an option to “Select all conversations” to mark thousands as read at once?
I’m typing “is: unread” + selecting the “All” check box, but instead of “Select all conversations” at the top of my screen, it says “No results found”…? pic.twitter.com/dercwGE5OE
— Laura McQuillan (@mcquillanator) September 30, 2020
incredible that the “Select all conversations that match this search” option has been removed from @gmail. what on earth are they thinking??? actions can now be performed only on the max # of messages per page. insane! please fix ASAP @Google
— rick tait (@rickt) October 1, 2020
Instead of the option, we’re seeing a nav bar with a handful of shortcut buttons when we search, like this:
Thankfully, Google tells The Verge it’s coming back “as soon as possible,” adding:
We are working to bring back the feature in Gmail that allows you to ‘select all conversations that match this search’ as soon as possible. This feature was removed unintentionally. We apologize to our users who may have been affected.
That’ll be good news to those who posted in this Gmail help thread from six days ago, which had gone unanswered until now, and it explains why Google’s own Gmail support team was unaware of a change; on at least a couple occasions, they’d been giving readers instructions that no
Apple on Tuesday released a new set of emojis coming to iOS devices this fall, including a transgender flag, more gender neutral options and a “disguised face” with glasses and a mustache.
The new set of emojis are part of Unicode 13, a set of standards released earlier this year by the Unicode Consortium, an organization that sets rules for tech companies using special characters like emoji.
The new emoji were included in a beta version of the iOS 14.2 software update Tuesday, and will likely be available to the public in October or November 2020, according to Emojipedia.
The update will add more inclusive options such as a transgender flag, a transgender symbol, a woman with a tux, a man with a veil and a gender neutral person with each, along with a non-binary Santa alternative, Mx. Claus.
Other notable additions are: ninjas, blueberries, bubble tea, a seal, a feather, a roller skate and a toilet plunger.
Apple’s new release won’t include emoji that are part of Unicode 13.1, which was introduced last week and includes a woman with a beard, a gender neutral “person with a beard” and a heart on fire. Those emoji are expected in 2021, according to Emojipedia.
Tech companies have been slowly adding more inclusive emoji over the past few years. It took until 2015 for the Unicode Consortium to introduce more skin color choices instead of the default yellow tone. And in 2016, the rainbow Pride Flag emoji was added.