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Good News Ride Home

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The antidote to depressing coronavirus headlines. Stay up to date on Covid-19, while also hearing stories of progress and hope. 15 minutes, every weekday.

65 Episodes
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Today we’re looking at the different ways the virus spreads and what measures can be taken to prevent spread in different contexts. A new study shows coronavirus epidemics may have started later than originally thought. Plus, the grad student who solved a problem that had stumped experts for half a century. Why Sweden celebrates Taco Friday. And a round-up of Star Wars-related media to check out this weekend.Sponsors:Beachbody on Demand, Text "briefing" to 303030OurCrowd, info.ourcrowd.com/goodnewsLinks:Monkeys steal coronavirus blood samples in India (Reuters)Tyson Pork Plant In Iowa Shuts After Hundreds Of Workers Test Positive for COVID-19 (HuffPost)To Beat Covid-19, You Have to Know How A Virus Moves (Wired)Coronavirus Epidemics Began Later Than Believed, Study Concludes (NY Times)Graduate Student Untangles Decades-Old Math Problem in Less Than a Week (Smithsonian Magazine)Taco Friday in Sweden (Mental Floss)How 'Taco Friday' Became a Swedish Tradition (Atlas Obscura)Listen to the original NPR radio drama adaptations of the first STAR WARS trilogy (Boing Boing) A Modern Trailer for The Empire Strikes Back (Neatorama) Star Wars Game Show Trailer Is Here: Jedi Temple Challenge (Gizmodo) Disney+ Accessibility Subtitles Can Make Everything Comics Sans (Gizmodo)“Baby Yoda (This Is The Way)” (Blue Milk Run, Bandcamp)
Is the coronavirus more dependent on super spreaders than we thought? Research indicates possible biological markers to determine how severely an individual will react to COVID-19. And how the decline of local journalism is taking a toll on America’s small towns. Plus, will we be able to trust our memories of this time? Cannibalistic dinosaurs. And why oranges are sold in red mesh bags.Sponsors:OurCrowd, info.ourcrowd.com/goodnewsBeachbody on Demand, Text "briefing" to 303030Links:Here’s the Latest Good (and Bad) News About the Coronavirus (NY Magazine)The Demise of Local News Is a Pandemic Emergency (The Atlantic)How Will We Remember the Coronavirus Pandemic? (Discover)Frazier History Museum's 'Coronavirus Capsule' records a pandemic lifestyle as it happens (Courier Journal)Jurassic dinosaur Allosaurus may have been a cannibal (CNET)Why Oranges Come In Red Bags (Mental Floss)
A third of Americans now show signs of clinical anxiety and depression. A round-up of where and how the virus spreads, including how safe you may be on planes and going into the office. Plus, the details behind the futuristic SpaceX flight suits. The woman on TikTok trying to trade a bobby pin for a house. And a soothing soundscape of narwhals.Sponsors:Beachbody on Demand, Text "briefing" to 303030OurCrowd, info.ourcrowd.com/goodnewsLinks:More People Are Taking Drugs for Anxiety and Insomnia, and Doctors Are Worried (Wall Street Journal)A third of Americans now show signs of clinical anxiety or depression, Census Bureau finds amid coronavirus pandemic (Washington Post)How Covid Spreads (CDC)Where Coronavirus Spreads (Christopher Mims, Twitter)That Office AC System Is Great — at Recirculating Viruses (New York Magazine)What Parents Should Know About Coronavirus as Kids Return to Babysitters, Day Cares and Camps (ProPublica)Boeing and Airbus Study How Coronavirus Behaves During Air Travel (Wall Street Journal)How an Immunology Blog Became a Covid-19 Guide to Going Out (Wired)Nasa SpaceX launch: Evolution of the spacesuit (BBC)One Red PaperclipCan a bobby pin be traded up to a house? A woman on TikTok is trying to find out (Boing Boing)TradeMeProject (Instagram)TradeMeProject (TikTok)Scientists Record Rarely Heard Sounds Made by Narwhals (Gizmodo)
Young people are getting sick with COVID-19 in very high numbers in Brazil. A rundown on what we know and don’t know at this point. And an argument against immunity passports. Plus, SpaceX’s Crew Dragon launches tomorrow. A new space tax proposal. The world’s oldest living cat celebrates his birthday. How to get free pizza if you’re a graduating senior. And Catholic priests’ new weapon to fight coronavirus.Sponsors:OurCrowd, info.ourcrowd.com/goodnewsBeachbody on Demand, Text "briefing" to 303030Links:In the developing world, the coronavirus is killing far more young people (Washington Post)What We Know and Don't Know (Megan Ranney MD, Twitter)Ten reasons why immunity passports are a bad idea (Nature)World's oldest living cat celebrates his 32nd birthday (Animal Channel)How to Watch SpaceX Launch Astronauts to the ISS (Wired)'Orbit tax' proposed to tackle growing problem of space junk (Sky News)Space Force (Netflix)Priests now baptizing kids and blessing food with water guns (A/V Club)2020 grads can get free Pizza Hut pizza (ABC Chicago)Here's A Clever Trick To Make A Pizza Box Walk Down A Ramp (Digg)
More on that study projecting 36,000 people could have been saved if the US had locked down sooner. How to safely socialize, if you choose to do so. Bots are spreading coronavirus conspiracy theories on Twitter. And, Pac-Man turns 40 today. The hottest new renewable resource on the moon: astronaut’s pee. The twenty-five-year-old skin care consultant fielding Elon Musk’s missed calls. And some recommended videos to watch this weekend.Links:Antimalarial drug touted by President Trump is linked to increased risk of death in coronavirus patients, study says (Washington Post)Hydroxychloroquine study numbers (Ryan Struyk, Twitter)Researchers: Nearly Half Of Accounts Tweeting About Coronavirus Are Likely Bots (NPR)Students wear wings to maintain social distancing in China (Gulf News)Lockdown Delays Cost at Least 36,000 Lives, Data Show (NY Times)Want to see friends? Here are the coronavirus risk factors (LA Times) Social distancing isn't going to end soon. So how do we live with it? | Gaby Hinsliff (The Guardian)Can You Socialize Safely During the COVID-19 Pandemic? (NY Times)'Pac-Man' once felt futuristic. Now there's a new one built entirely by AI. (Mashable)40 Years on, PAC-MAN Recreated with AI by NVIDIA Researchers (NVIDIA)Pac-Man will be playable on Twitch starting this June (The Verge)On the Moon, Astronaut Pee Will Be a Hot Commodity (Wired)Her Cellphone Number Used To Be Elon Musk's. You Can Imagine The Calls She Gets (NPR)David Lynch's daily YouTube weather reports are highly soothing and very David Lynch (Mashable)Foster The People's 'Pumped Up Kicks', Medieval Style (Geekologie)Does Hand Sanitizer Create Superbugs? (SciShow, YouTube)Why Some "Remastered" Music Videos Look Awful (Tom Scott, YouTube)
The CDC updates their guidelines on the spread of the virus via surfaces. Is it safe to go swimming? How much of an effect does population density have on the spread of the disease? Plus, throwing cold water on that “NASA discovers a parallel universe” story. Some tips to improve your walking. And the most heartwarming YouTube channel to go viral in a long time.Links:Coronavirus 'does not spread easily' by touching surfaces or objects, CDC now says. But it still 'may be possible.' (USA Today)How Covid Spreads (CDC)What is the coronavirus risk in the ocean, pools, and lakes (LA Times)How Does a Virus Spread in Cities? It’s a Problem of Scale (Wired)No, NASA didn't find evidence of a parallel universe where time runs backwards (CNET)How to improve your walking technique (Suunto)Learning life skills with Rob Kenney of 'Dad, How Do I?' (WCIU)Dad, How Do I?  (YouTube)
U.S. states are all reopening in some fashion this week. How AI-powered biotech can speed up the vaccine development process. And COVID-19 patients are running their own surveys to show the true effects of the disease. Plus, a livestream from Stonehenge. Chuck E. Cheese’s new front. And a British man who has turned one hundred, gotten a book deal, topped the music charts, and been knighted all in the last two months.Links:Airlines see signs of higher demand but pandemic clouds outlook (CNBC)OpenTable reservations dataset link & commentary (Paul Krugman, Twitter)This N95-like mask would allow you to unlock your phone with Face ID (CNET)AI-Powered Biotech Can Help Deploy a Vaccine In Record Time (Wired)Guidelines Say Covid-19 Symptoms Last Two Weeks. Survivors Know Better. (Elemental)Stonehenge Summer Solstice 2020 Livestream (Mental Floss)Chuck E. Cheese Is Selling Pizza on Delivery Apps as 'Pasqually's' (Food & Wine)Things I Didn’t Need to Know: Chuck E. Cheese Has a Whole Backstory and It’s Incredibly Bleak (The Mary Sue)Chuck E. Cheese WikiCaptain Tom Moore 'overawed' by knighthood for NHS fundraising (BBC)The 100-Year-Old Who Raised $40 Million for U.K. Health Workers (NY Times)
Testing is expanding in the US, but people aren’t showing up. More findings on people who test positive again after recovering. And "bumper tables" for social distancing. Plus, debunking misconceptions about the 1918 flu pandemic, why we might be seeing an animation renaissance, and is Etsy the new Grubhub?Links:Initial surge in news use around coronavirus in the UK has been followed by significant increase in news avoidance (Reuters Institute)Thinking of Buying a Bike? Get Ready for a Very Long Wait (NY Times)The COVID Tracking ProjectA.C.L.U. Warns Against Fever-Screening Tools for Coronavirus (NY Times)Shakespeare's Globe May Permanently Close (The Mary Sue)Ocean City Bar Buys 'Bumper Tables' For Socially Distant Dining (CBS Baltimore)US states see COVID-19 testing supply improvements, but challenges abound (Washington Post)Covid Patients Testing Positive After Recovery Aren’t Infectious, Study Shows (Bloomberg)Ten Myths About the 1918 Flu Pandemic | History (Smithsonian Magazine)Why You’re Going to See More Animation (Thanks, Pandemic) (Wall Street Journal)Listen to this mashup of Saturday morning cartoon themes (AV Club)If You're Jonesing for a Homemade Snack, Try Etsy (LifeHacker)
Promising results from the Moderna vaccine trials. Brazil’s cases are mounting. How much of a difference it makes when everyone wears a mask. Plus, why you might be having trouble replying to texts recently, how climate change played a role in the evolution of rice, and the hottest new sport in town: marble racing.Links:State-by-state hospitalization rates (Scott Gottlieb, Twitter)Coalition of 116 countries back Australia's push for independent coronavirus inquiry (SBS News)TSA Prepares to Screen Temperatures at Airports During Pandemic (Gizmodo)Coronavirus Vaccine Trial by Moderna Shows Promising Early Results (NY Times)Dow soars 700 points for biggest jump in a month, boosted by coronavirus vaccine hope (CNBC)COVID-19 Vaccines Are Coming, but They’re Not What You Think (The Atlantic)If 80% of Americans Wore Masks, COVID-19 Infections Would Plummet, New Study Says (Vanity Fair)Visual simulations show why we all need to wear masks now (De Kai, YouTube)Why Is Texting People Back Suddenly So Hard? (Vice)Global Cooling Event 4,200 Years Ago Spurred Rice's Evolution, Spread Across Asia (NYU)John Oliver rolls up a ridiculously brilliant remedy for our sports-starved existence (A/V Club)Jelle's Marble Runs
How far can respiratory droplets fall when we speak? What would a public health plan targeted towards the elderly look like? Some advice on combatting COVID-19 symptoms from someone in recovery. Plus, have birds gotten louder recently? Why did Michael Jordan agree to star in Space Jam? And a site to help you discover new-to-you music on Spotify.Links:Experiment shows human speech generates droplets that linger in the air for more than 8 minutes (Washington Post)Coronavirus: False claims viewed by millions on YouTube (BBC)Covid Targets the Elderly. Why Don't Our Prevention Efforts? (NY Magazine)Opinion | Coronavirus Is Making Young People Very Sick. I Was One of Them. (New York Times)Breathing exercise (Dr. Sarfaraz Munshi, YouTube)Birdsong seems louder and the ravens are more relaxed (Irish Times)Human Life Is Literally Quieter Due To Coronavirus Lockdown (NPR)Do Those Birds Sound Louder To You? An Ornithologist Says You're Just Hearing Things (NPR)Why Did Michael Jordan Star in 'Space Jam'? (Vulture)SpaceJam.comForgotify
Mental health concerns for children as the pandemic goes on. The seven things we can be doing to beat COVID-19 and save the economy. How our changed behavior has confused the algorithms. Why humans freak out when they get lost, and a new interactive Netflix special to enjoy while you stay home this weekend.Links:Coronavirus suppression: Expert recommendations to beat Covid-19 (Vox)Netflix’s first interactive sitcom: Good for laughs, deserves a better app (Ars Technica)Our weird behavior during the pandemic is messing with AI models (MIT Technology Review)Why Humans Totally Freak Out When They Get Lost (Wired)
Los Angeles is considering extending their lockdown for three more months while other places begin reopening. A practical guide to avoiding COVID-19 risks. What the loss of smell and other neurological symptoms might mean for the relationship between coronavirus and the nervous system. Plus, a new online simulator from SpaceX, how to make cold brew in a french press, a comet to look out for tonight, and Guy Fieri and Bill Murray go head-to-head.Links:As coronavirus cases resurge, lockdowns reimposed on at least three continents (Washington Post)Restaurants in Washington Need to Track Customer Info for Contact Tracing (Eater)A Practical Guide to Covid-19 Risks and How to Avoid Them (Kottke)Loss of smell, confusion, strokes: Does Covid-19 target the nervous system? (Knowable Magazine)Try to dock with the International Space Station with this SpaceX Crew Dragon simulator (The Verge)How to See Comet SWAN in Night Skies (New York Times)How to Make Cold Brew in a French Press (LifeHacker)Guy Fieri and Bill Murray are having a nacho cook-off for charity (Mashable)
Many countries around the world take cautious steps toward reopening, but spikes of new daily cases are still popping up. Should people with mild cases of coronavirus be allowed to isolate at home? Why the passage of time feels so disorienting right now. And why Clorox wipes are still so tough to find. Plus,  and the gene that causes South African bees to have “virgin births.”Links:Coronavirus tracked: has your country’s epidemic peaked? (Financial Times)Coronavirus in the U.S.: Latest Map and Case Count (New York Times)Should Mild Coronavirus Cases Isolate at Home? Many Asian Countries Say No (Wall Street Journal)Why Clorox Wipes Are Still So Hard to Find (Wall Street Journal)Why quarantine has made time feel so weird, explained (Vox)Here Are Some Easy Tips So You Can Make All Those Zoom Calls Less Exhausting (Science Alert)Every episode of The Office is now playing out live on Slack (AV Club)Virgin birth has scientists buzzing: Researchers discover a gene in honey bees that causes virgin birth (Science Daily)
Numbers are looking relatively promising in a lot of places, but one incident has jeopardized South Korea. The FDA has approved the first antigen test, and what’s the difference between that and an antibody test? Why might a vaccine take so long to develop? Plus, the internet shares their favorite memories of Little Richard, how to cook murder hornets, using nanospacecraft to locate black holes, and how The Simpsons predicted 2020.Links:New case results chartsFDA Grants Emergency-Use Status for First Coronavirus Antigen Test (Wall Street Journal)The difference between antibody and antigen tests for the coronavirus: Who should get them and what do they do? (Business Insider)What if it takes a really long time to develop a coronavirus vaccine? (Wired)Little Richard, Flamboyant Wild Man of Rock ’n’ Roll, Dies at 87 (NY Times)Little Richard story one (Doug Benson, Twitter)Little Richard story two (Blaine Capatch, Twitter)Little Richard Put Wild Sex Into the Top 40 for Good (Vulture)The Simpsons predicted 2020 including the murder hornets (Boing Boing)How to Cook a 'Murder Hornet' (Gizmodo)'Murder hornets' have arrived in the US—here's what you should know (National Geographic)Closest black hole to Earth found 'hiding in plain sight' (National Geographic)If Planet Nine Is a Tiny Black Hole, This Is How to Find It (Discover Magazine)
Special announcement from Brian about the changes to the podcast. Don't worry, we're not going anywhere...
Was the Sundance film festival another super spreader event early on in the disease? Now that remdesivir is thought to be a treatment, doctors want to know why they can’t get their hands on it. Blood thinners show promise combatting those clotting issues we’ve been seeing. A comprehensive look at antibody tests and what they can and cannot do. And a look at New Zealand’s “Bubble” concept. Could it be a playbook for the next few months?Sponsors:ExpressVPN.com/REPORT for an extra three months free on a one year packageLinks:Coronavirus in the U.S.: Latest Map and Case Count (NY Times)Blood thinners show promise for boosting the survival chances of the sickest covid patients (Washington Post)What It’s Like to Have Covid-19 (NY Times)Coronavirus antibody testing, explained (The Verge)A study finds that nearly everyone who gets the virus eventually makes antibodies. (NY Times)New Zealand's "bubble concept" is letting people socialize again. Would it work in America? (Slate)Coronavirus Morning Report subreddit, r/coronaviruspodCoronavirus Morning Report on YouTube
Are travel bubbles the new trend in post-lockdown countries? Could we see a coronavirus test that is as simple to take as a home pregnancy test? The problem with those stories about coronavirus mutations. The precise symptoms of that new, possibly covid-related sickness in children. And actually, a consideration of what we know and still don’t know about the long term health effects of the disease.Sponsors:ExpressVPN.com/REPORT for an extra three months free on a one year packageLinks:Beware Overblown Claims of Coronavirus Strains (The Atlantic)64 NY Children Sickened With Rare COVID-Related Illness, State Finds; Here Are the Warning Signs (NBC New York)15 Children Are Hospitalized With Mysterious Illness Possibly Tied to Covid-19 (NY Times)What Are COVID-19's Long-Term Medical Effects? (Talking Points Memo) Millions of people are expected to fall ill with tuberculosis due to coronavirus lockdown (CNBC)Hoping Llamas Will Become Coronavirus Heroes (NY Times)Coronavirus Morning Report subreddit, r/coronaviruspodCoronavirus Morning Report on YouTube
“Where’s the beef?” Literally. At least, in some Wendy’s restaurants. A look at that research suggesting there is a mutated strain of the coronavirus that might be more deadly. Pfizer begins human trials of a vaccine. Rural infections rates spike. And the citizens of Ireland return a century old favor.Sponsors:ExpressVPN.com/REPORT for an extra three months free on a one year packageLinks:Study reports mutant coronavirus. It may be more contagious (LA Times)Commentary on the study of the possible new strain (Bill Hanage, Twitter)Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer begins testing coronavirus vaccine in people (Washington Post)COVID-19 Vaccine Tracker (Milken Institute)How Hong Kong contained its second wave of Covid-19 (CNN)Rural Infection Rates Spike As Urban Outbreaks Subside, Data Says (Talking Points Memo)Irish Return an Old Favor, Helping Native Americans Battling the Virus (NY Times)Coronavirus Morning Report subreddit, r/coronaviruspodCoronavirus Morning Report on YouTube
A new mystery illness affecting children may or may not be Covid-19 related. What is life going to look like until there is a vaccine? How long do coronavirus symptoms actually last? Will schools actually be reopening in September? And why the lockdown has created a field day for speeders.Sponsors:ExpressVPN.com/REPORT for an extra three months free on a one year packageLinks:15 Children Are Hospitalized With Mysterious Illness Possibly Tied to Covid-19 (NY Times)Paul Romer on How to Survive the Chaos of the Coronavirus (The New Yorker)Inside the extraordinary race to invent a coronavirus vaccine (Washington Post)Coronavirus patients describe symptoms that last a month or more (CNBC)Will schools be open in September? We asked several experts to weigh in (CNBC)Lockdown Turns Nation's Highways into Speedways (Wall Street Journal)Coronavirus Morning Report subreddit, r/coronaviruspodCoronavirus Morning Report on YouTube
This week begins the great re-opening experiment. We take a deep breath and look at three of our biggest concerns about all of this. Why does the virus wallop some places and spare others? Accurate comparing Coronavirus deaths to Flu deaths. And what offices might look like after lockdown. TLDR: the cubicle is back!Sponsors:ExpressVPN.com/REPORT for an extra three months free on a one year packageStamps.com, enter code: "briefing"Links:What the Coronavirus Models Can't See (NY Mag)The Covid-19 Riddle: Why Does the Virus Wallop Some Places and Spare Others? (NY Times)Comparing COVID-19 Deaths to Flu Deaths Is like Comparing Apples to Oranges (Scientific American)How to compare coronavirus deaths to flu deaths more accurately (Washington Post)The Cubicle Is Back. Blame (or Thank) the Coronavirus (Wired)Coronavirus Morning Report subreddit, r/coronaviruspodCoronavirus Morning Report on YouTube
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Comments (5)

Mandeep Sahni

This is my go-to #podcast for everything related to #COVID 19 or #Coronavirus news. I hear it here first. I look forward to your new format now. #PodcastRecommendations

May 12th
Reply

Thor Engebretson

Informative and insightful.

Mar 31st
Reply

Michael Forsythe

Thanks for all your great newscasting!

Mar 27th
Reply (1)

Julia Burger

This is an informative podcast. Thank you and keep up the good work!

Mar 18th
Reply
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