Friday, September 4, 2020

Elon Musk is world’s third-richest

Elon Musk has overtaken Mark Zuckerberg to become the third-richest person in the world, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. The Tesla founder is now worth $115.4 billion to Zuckerberg’s $110.8 billion, as shares in the electric vehicle behemoth continued their rally early this week after undergoing a forward stock split. Musk’s net worth has grown by $87.8 billion this year as shares of Tesla, now with a $464 billion market value, soared almost 500%. Amazon’s Jeff Bezos is still the world’s richest person, worth more than $200 billion. (Bloomberg)


Black ex-franchisees sue McDonald’s

More than 50 Black former McDonald’s-franchise owners have sued the chain for racial discrimination, claiming that the company pushed them toward locations in low-income areas. The outlets, with higher security and insurance costs, also reaped $700,000 less in annual revenue than the average franchisee during the past decade — a factor contributing to the number of Black owners falling by more than half since 1998, according to the suit. The company, which faces at least two other racial bias suits from employees, said it only recommended locations to the former owners. (CNBC)


SpaceX seeks FCC broadband funds, must prove it can deliver subscribers 100ms latency

SpaceX, Charter, Verizon, CenturyLink, Frontier, Cox, and about 500 other companies are seeking government funding to provide broadband in rural areas. The Federal Communications Commission yesterday released a list of applicants for the first phase of the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF), which is set to pay up to $16 billion to Internet service providers over 10 years. SpaceX would be the first low Earth orbit (LEO) satellite provider to get FCC rural-broadband funding. The RDOF and predecessor programs generally fund expansion of wired or terrestrial wireless services by paying ISPs to expand their networks into rural areas where they would not otherwise have built. As a satellite provider, SpaceX won’t need to install wires or wireless towers in any particular area. But traditional satellite providers have obtained FCC funding before despite already offering service throughout the United States. SpaceX could seek FCC funding to offer lower-priced broadband in census blocks that lack service by meeting the FCC’s speed standard of 25Mbps downloads and 3Mbps uploads. Ookla speed tests of SpaceX’s Starlink service during the current beta trials recently found download speeds of 11Mbps to 60Mbps and upload speeds of 5Mbps to 18Mbps. Another set of speed tests at found SpaceX averages of 39.6Mbps downstream and 10.7Mbps upstream. (Ars Technica)


Philadelphia mayor apologizes after he was spotted dining indoors in Maryland while restaurants in his city are still closed

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney is facing scrutiny after being photographed dining indoors at a restaurant in Chesapeake Bay, Maryland, while restaurants in his own city remain closed to indoor dining. His office confirmed his visit, saying that his friend owned the restaurant and that outdoor dining wasn’t available. “In this case he felt indoor dining was low risk in this case because there are 782 total COVID cases in the county he briefly visited, compared to over 33,000 cases in Philadelphia. Drastically different circumstances,” the statement read. He addressed the photograph on social media earlier this week, saying he felt the risk was low, but he understood the frustration. (CNN)


A 105-year-old woman who survived 1921 Tulsa race massacre leads lawsuit seeking reparations

Survivors and descendants of those killed in the 1921 Tulsa race massacre filed a lawsuit earlier this week seeking reparations nearly a century after a White mob looted and lit fire to buildings in a flourishing financial district once known as Oklahoma’s Black Wall Street. The main plaintiff, 105-year-old Lessie Benningfield Randle, was a child at the time and “still experiences flashbacks of Black bodies stacked on the street as her neighborhood was burning, causing her to constantly relive the terror,” according to the complaint filed in Tulsa County District Court. She is one of only two known living survivors. The worst civil disturbance since the Civil War, the Tulsa race massacre began on the morning of May 31, 1921, when a Black man accused of sexually assaulting a White woman was arrested and jailed at the Tulsa County Courthouse. A large group of armed Black men rushed the courthouse to defend the man, fearing he would be lynched, according to a 2001 report from the Oklahoma Commission to Study the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921. The charges against the man were later dropped. (Fox News)


Woman living with Vegas poker player allegedly stole $1M in cash, valuables

A 46-year-old woman was arrested for allegedly stealing about $1 million in valuables from a professional poker player in Las Vegas. She is accused of ripping off an international player and his father, then using some of the loot to finance her own poker buy-ins, citing a police report. She is suspected of breaking into his bedroom safe, then taking $150,000 in cash, up to $500,000 in poker chips and an assortment of high-end watches. In his professional career, the man has been awarded three world series of poker bracelets and earned over $22 million playing poker. She was charged with residential burglary and possession of stolen property valued at $100,000 or more. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)


Dogs left inside Chicago airport warehouse without food, water after paperwork issue, 1 dies

The airline cargo service, AGI, has been accused of animal cruelty and neglect after one dog died and 17 others were left inside a Chicago airport warehouse without food and water for roughly three days, police said. Chicago police received an anonymous tip recently about several dogs that were left without any care inside a warehouse at O’Hare International Airport, authorities said. They discovered 17 dogs “in a cage without food or water” and determined another dog had died the day before, according to information provided by the Chicago police department. Police said the dogs came in on an Aug. 28 flight but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention would not allow the animals to be released to their owners because there were problems with the vaccination paperwork. Police cited AGI on cruelty to animals and neglect. (Chicago Sun Times)


Utah police replace woman’s American flag after she breaks it while fighting off home intruder

Utah police helped replace a woman’s American flag after she broke it while using Old Glory to protect her family from a home intruder on Monday, authorities said. The woman and several family members were assaulted just outside their home after a man entered through the front gate, the South Salt Lake Police Department said in a news release. The 73-year-old woman said the stranger had jumped the fence and began beating her brothers and choking her. She fought back after grabbing her flagpole, with the American flag still attached, police said. She struck the intruder multiple times, breaking the flagpole in the process. “I grabbed my glory and started beating the hell back,” she said. “I whooped his a– and I’ll whoop it again.” The family ran inside their home to escape the attacker, but the suspect kicked in their door and continued to attack them, police said. Officers arrived at the home and arrested the 42-year-old intruder and charged him with aggravated burglary, aggravated assault, criminal mischief, and two counts of assault. (South Salt Lakem Utah Police Department Facebook)


Microsoft announces new tech aimed at detecting, preventing deepfakes

Microsoft has released new technology that may help combat the use of deepfake videos ahead of this year’s election. The company announced the Microsoft Video Authenticator. This tool will reportedly be able to identify manipulated videos, which have been a source of misinformation in recent days. The other new software will allow creators to certify their videos with Microsoft so people can verify they’re authentic. In July, MIT released a video demonstrating how deepfake technology can be used and is difficult to detect. Microsoft stated it is planning to work with BBC, CBC and the New York Times to test its new authenticator technology. (One America News Network)


Honeybee venom destroyed breast cancer cells

Venom from honeybees rapidly destroyed triple-negative breast cancer, a type of cancer that has limited treatment options, and HER2-enriched breast cancer cells, according to a study. Using the venom from over 300 honeybees and bumblebees in England, Ireland and Perth, Western Australia, researchers from the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research and The University of Western Australia, tested the effect of the venom on the clinical subtypes of breast cancer, according to the news release. The study investigated the anti-cancer properties of the venom in honeybees and melittin, the “active component of honeybee venom” according to the study on different types of breast cancer cells. The study showed melittin not only destroyed cancer cells but also reduced the cancer cells’ chemical messages that enable the cancer to divide and proliferate within 20 minutes. They say that melittin can completely destroy cancer cell membranes within 60 minutes. The melittin was also tested to see if it could be used in conjunction with current chemotherapy drugs. Melittin forms pores in the cancer cell membranes which could potentially help the entry of other treatments into the cancer cell, to help destroy the cancer, according to the press release. Researchers found that melittin can be used with small molecules or chemotherapies, such as docetaxel, to treat highly-aggressive types of breast cancer. The combination of melittin and docetaxel was extremely efficient in reducing tumor growth in mice. It was found that the European honeybee in Australia, Ireland and England produced almost identical effects in breast cancer compared to normal cells. However, bumblebee venom was unable to induce cell death even at very high concentrations. The release said future studies are needed to formally assess the best method of providing melittin, as well as maximum tolerated doses and potential toxicities. (Precision Oncology)


Dairy Queen is celebrating fall 2020 with the return of Blizzard-scented candles inspired by flavors from the brand’s new 2020 fall Blizzard lineup

This year’s Blizzard-scented candle collection includes a set of six, 4-oz candles in the following Blizzard-inspired scents:

  • Caramel Apple Pie
  • Pumpkin Pie
  • Oreo Mocha Fudge
  • Snickerdoodle Cookie Dough
  • Brownie Dough
  • Choco Dipped Strawberry

The new candle collection will be available to purchase at for $25 a set while supplies last. The entire $25 purchase price will be donated to Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, a longtime charitable partner of Dairy Queen. (Dairy Queen)


Woman walks onto airplane wing after complaining she’s ‘too hot’ as stunned passengers watch her open doors onto runway

Ukraine International Airlines said the woman “opened the emergency exit and went on to its wing” moments after landing at Kiev from Turkey. She opened an emergency exit on the Boeing 737-86N and climbed onto the wing “to get some air”, say reports. The mother-of-two was said to be “too hot” after landing on a flight from Turkish resort city Antalya. Videos show her casually strolling along the wing before climbing back inside the cabin to rejoin her family. The pilot called for an ambulance, police and border guards. The woman had clambered back safely into the Boeing’s interior before told cops she was too hot, it was reported. Tests showed she was neither drunk, nor on drugs. She had been traveling with her husband and their two kids for a family holiday before the start of the new school term. Ukraine International Airlines (UIA) confirmed the bizarre incident, saying the mum was now “blacklisted”. (The Sun)



Wear a mask during sex, skip kissing, Canada’s top doctor suggests

People should skip kissing and consider wearing a mask when having sex to reduce your chances of being exposed to the novel coronavirus, according to Canada’s chief medical officer. She laid out the sexual ground rules during a statement that covered the best ways to keep yourself and your partner safe from COVID-19 while engaging in sexual intercourse. “Sexual health is an important part of our overall health,” she wrote. “However, sex can be complicated in the time of COVID-19, especially for those without an intimate partner in their household or whose sexual partner is at higher risk for COVID-19.” She advised to skip kissing, avoid face-to-face contact, and consider using a mask that covers the nose and mouth. You should also limit the use of alcohol or other substances so “you and your partner(s) are able to make safe decisions.” She also recommended not having sex if your partner or yourself, are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, and said that the most important step is having a trusting relationship with your sexual partner. She added that your partner is at a higher risk for serious complications from the virus if they have an underlying medical condition, compromised immune system, or are obese. (Public Health Agency Of Canada)


Friday Breaks The Wall Down With:

  • Bring Your Manners To Work Day
  • Chianti Day (First Friday)
  • College Colors Day (Friday before Labor Day)
  • Cow Chip Throwing Days (Friday & Saturday of Labor Day Weekend)
  • Food Bank Day (First Friday)
  • Lazy Mom’s Day (First Friday)
  • Macadamia Nut Day
  • Newspaper Carrier Day
  • Stand Up To Cancer Day (First Friday)
  • Wildlife Day

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