Lifestyle

How to disinfect your tech from the coronavirus

Here are a few tips to live by

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Time for a good boy and girl check! Have you been washing your hands for 20 seconds? Rubbing your hands raw with dollops of hand sanitizer? Covering every cough and sneeze? In today’s risky times, keeping yourself and others safe from the coronavirus is of paramount importance.

That said, for all the safety precautions hammered into us today, you’re likely missing one of the dirtiest, nastiest, and most bacteria-infested objects we use every single day: our smartphones. For dozens of moments every day, smartphone users fiddle with their screens with potentially unclean fingers, speak and spit into the microphone, and lend them to our friends and family.

Once a surface is contaminated with a disease, it can survive on that surface for several days to more than a week, according to this study of different coronaviruses. Our smartphones are gross.

The same even applies to other technology we use today: headphones, laptops, wearables. Given how serious we’re taking our own health, it’s time to finally lay the smackdown on those disgusting diseases plaguing our technology. Here are a few tech tips to sanitize your technology against viruses.

Wipe your phones.

Naturally, the simplest way to keep your phones clean is to wipe them clean. Of course, if you’ve read the backs of smartphone-cleaning cloths and solutions, you’ll know that wiping your phones isn’t as easy as wiping a smear from a window. Using the wrong material can damage your delicate daily drivers.

First off, use a cloth, especially those tailored for screens. Though phones are usually scratch resistant today, a coarser cleaning material — like a paper towel or a rougher cloth type — can cause small abrasions on your pristine screen or leave damaging residue. The same goes even more for third-party screen protectors, which aren’t rated for abrasions

Secondly, use the right solution. Abrasions aren’t the only thing you have to worry about. Most smartphone brands advise against alcohols because it ruins protective films on the phone. However, for our current situation, viruses constitute a greater threat than smartphone damage. You can use 70 percent isopropyl alcohol for the job, as Apple has suggested.

If you want a compromise between maintaining the intricacies of your phone and dealing with the virus, go for warm water and soap. Alternatively, you can use disinfecting wipes to save the trouble of wetting cloths.

Regardless of which you choose, wet your cloth with the solution and wipe thoroughly but lightly. You don’t want to break your phone from exerting too much pressure. Likewise, be careful around more delicate parts, like the camera lenses and open ports.

Clean your supplementary tech.

Smartphones are nasty. Your other devices are just as nasty. Consider the earphones that you stick into your eardrums every day. Or the smartwatch that catches all your sweat from the gym. Or the Amazon smart ring that nestles on your hand as you go through our daily routine.

As you wipe your daily drivers, your other devices could be festering nastier things from your dried bodily functions. Apply the same amount of caution to your other devices, especially after use.

If you take your wearables and earphones to the gym, wipe them down as you would the bench you used. Your sweat (and other people’s sweat, for that matter) can harbor disease. This includes the canals on your budded earphones or underneath your watch. However, as you did on your phone, take care over sensitive areas, like your watch’s screen or the wires of your earphones.

Keep wipes handy for public tech.

Now, let’s talk about the tech that you don’t own. Even today, it’s perfectly normal to use public computers, laptops, or chargers. If you’re in school or in an office, using these devices is probably even a requirement. If your institution hasn’t implemented telecommuting yet, you might be forced to use them at the risk of infection.

That said, keep a cleaning item handy when you’re out in public. You’ll never know when you’ll handle items touched by someone else. Most disinfecting procedures today only encompass doorknobs and stairways. Unfortunately, other items might be at risk as well.

On the other side of things, avoid lending your devices to other people during this time. In less trying times, device lending is a common thing. Unfortunately, with dangerous infection rates, having other people — even those you know — might not be a good idea.

Don’t spread misinformation from your devices.

Unfortunately, the most damaging thing today, apart from the coronavirus itself, is the misinformation infecting social media today. As important as physical disinfection is today, it’s also important to keep the insides of your phone free from the terrible disease of misinformation.

While it’s tempting to share every coronavirus-inspired post on every single chat group you belong to, consider how accurate the information is first. Was the information written by an expert? If not, was there adequate research involved? Is it proposing an all-too-radical position contrary to what experts are saying?

Caring for others is, of course, one of the hallmarks of being human in the face of crisis. Sadly, care itself can be misguided with fabricated and hyperbolic truths. While you care enough for your fellow human being, misinformation can cause more harm than good. Fortunately, along with care, rational discernment is also part of what makes us human. For all the steps listed above, the coronavirus isn’t our only enemy in this dreadful time. We need to fight misinformation, too.

We are now in the middle of tough times when even our devices can become our enemies. It’s time to rise up higher as a species. Though we can’t work on a cure or a vaccine ourselves, we can do our part by making sure we’re clean both for ourselves and others. While we’re at it, let’s make sure that the right information reaches the right people.

SEE ALSO: 5 things to do while stuck indoorsPhoneSoap Go: A portable device that will sanitize your smartphone


As general rules, the CDC or The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention listed these to help with preventing the spread of COVID-19:

  • Stay home when sick
  • Cover coughs and sneezes
  • Frequently wash hands with soap and water
  • Clean frequently touched surfaces

Gaming

Reebok unveils Valhalla-themed Capsule Collection

Inspired by the Viking fantasy of the upcoming Assassin’s Creed title

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Capsule Collection

Are any of these your SneakerMatch? Footwear brand Reebok launches its own Capsule Collection inspired by the Viking fantasy of Assassin’s Creed Valhalla.

The whole collection features sneakers, apparel, and accessories in different color accents taken straight from the game. For the footwear options, three styles headline the entire collection with designs taking insipiration from elements of Viking lore. The Zig Kinetica, Club C Revenge, and Classic Leather Legacy all include symbols, weapons, and colors taken from Norse mythology.

Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is just right around the corner, and it promises a whole new adventure to explore. Explore the rich lore of the Vikings as Eivor, a fierce raider during the time of England’s Dark Ages. With new features and new worlds to explore, Valhalla promises a whole new dimension in the Assassin’s Creed saga. Before you get to venture into the Dark Ages, you can bring Valhalla to your sense of style!

The collection also features two hoodies, caps, and socks to match the footwear. It will be exclusively available on Reebok’s website beginning November 7, and will hit select retailers on November 11.

SEE ALSO:
Reebok Zig Kinetica review: Reebok’s best trainer
Reebok Zig Kinetica Concept_Type 1 review: A head-turner

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Entertainment

Netflix is embracing Anime even more

5 new major, diverse projects are on the horizon

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It’s a great time to be an anime fan. Netflix hasn’t only been adding popular titles to their library, they’ve also fully embraced anime with five major projects to look forward to.

The five newly announced projects are: Rilakkuma’s Theme Park Adventure, Thermae Romae Novae, High-Rise Invasion, Thus Spoke Kishibe Rohan and The Way of the Househusband. Each add to the diverse and never-before-seen catalogue of stories straight from our creative home in Japan.

Why Anime?

Netflix says anime titles have appeared in the Top 10 list in almost 100 countries this year so far. Over 100 million households around the world chose to watch at least one anime title on Netflix (Oct 2019 – Sept 2020), growing by 50% year-over-year.

Titles like Seven Deadly Sins and BAKI have resonated with fans globally. Seven Deadly Sins became one of the Top 10 titles among all series and films in over 70 countries since its launch, and Baki in almost 50 countries.

There’s a total of 16 titles to be excited about. The first five on this list are completely new while the rest were previously announced and are expected to arrive in 2021.

Five new projects

Rilakkuma’s Theme Park Adventure

The production of the new series of Rilakkuma has been produced in stop-motion animation following the success of “Rilakkuma and Kaoru.” The series depicts an active day of incidents and meetings that take place when Rilakkuma, Korilakkuma, Kiiroitori, and Kaoru go play in an amusement park that is about to close.

Thermae Romae Novae

The very popular manga by Yamazaki Mari has been brought back to life in the present day in a new way (“Novae” means “new” in Latin). Based on the  manga, new episodes created by Mari Yamazaki will also appear. Lucius, a bath designer in the Roman Empire, accidentally slips back in time to present day Japan and learns about Japanese bath culture in this comedy.

High-Rise Invasion

Based on the manga by Miura Tsuina (Ajin) and Takahiro Oba (Box!), this is an unpredictable and frightening survival story set in high-rise buildings that don’t reach the ground. The protagonist, Yuri, decides to survive in order to destroy this illogical world and kill the enemy wearing the “mask”, but what will she do?

Thus Spoke Kishibe Rohan

This series consists of four strange episodes that Kishibe Rohan, the manga artist from “JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Diamond is Unbreakable,” saw and heard in a destination he visited to collect material for the manga.

The Way of the Househusband  

The most evil yakuza, Tatsu, is a legend in the underworld. He chose to walk away from the yakuza to become a full-time househusband!

Updates on 11 upcoming titles

EDEN (Coming May 2021)

A completely new story from director Irie Yasuhiro and the creators of the world, this sci-fi fantasy follows Sarah, a girl raised by two robots, as she confronts the world.

RESIDENT EVIL: Infinite Darkness (Coming 2021)

Known as the gold standard of survival horror games with over 100 million units from the game series shipped worldwide, “Resident Evil” has now been transformed into a Netflix original CG anime series. Three years after 2017’s CG film “Resident Evil: Vendetta,” technology has further evolved, creating the groundwork for a new series in unprecedented full 3DCG animation.

Vampire in the Garden (Coming 2021)

Once upon a time, there was a world where vampires and humans lived together in “Paradise”. This is the story of a young girl, Momo, and the vampire queen, Fine, who traveled in search of “Paradise.” This is a completely new work by WIT STUDIO, well-known for “Attack on Titan” and talented creators.

Yasuke (Coming Soon 2021)

In a war-torn feudal Japan filled with mechs and magic, the greatest ronin never known, Yasuke, struggles to maintain a peaceful existence after a past life of violence. But when a local village becomes the center of social upheaval between warring daimyo, Yasuke must take up his sword and transport a mysterious child who is the target of dark forces and bloodthirsty warlords.The story of Yasuke, the first African samurai who actually served the legendary Oda Nobunaga, will be released to the world.

Godzilla Singular Point (Coming 2021)

This series features a brand new staff and original story which depicts the young geniuses Mei Kamino, a female researcher, and Yun Arikawa, a male engineer, as they take on an unprecedented threat with their companions.

Pacific Rim: The Black (Coming Soon 2021)

There was a time when Kaiju rose from the Pacific Rim only to encounter gigantic robots, Jaegers, built to fight them back. That time has passed. Now, Australia has been overrun by Kaiju, forcing the evacuation of an entire continent. Left behind, teenage siblings Taylor and Hayley embark on a desperate search for their missing parents, teaching themselves to pilot a battered, long-abandoned Jaeger to help in their quest and give them even the slightest hope of surviving.

Transformers: War for the Cybertron Trilogy (Coming Soon)

The WAR FOR CYBERTRON continues with the second chapter, EARTHRISE! With the Allspark gone, Megatron is forced to confront the harsh reality that his Decepticons are trapped on a dying Cybertron while also fighting off the persistent threat of Elita-1 and her Autobots. Meanwhile, lost in the darkest reaches of space, Optimus Prime and his team embark on a desperate mission that will push them to the breaking point as they travel to uncharted new worlds to face spacefaring mercenaries, enigmatic figures from long ago and even their own creators.

Trese (Coming 2021)

Set in Manila where the mythical creatures of Philippine folklore live in hiding amongst humans, Alexandra Trese finds herself going head to head with a criminal underworld composed of malevolent supernatural beings.

B: The Beginning Succession (Coming Soon 2021)

After Keith and Koku solved the incidents successfully , the world has regained its composure. In the months since then, Keith returns to the RIS to conduct his own investigation, and Koku is living a peaceful life with Yuna. They are visited by Kirisame, who was once supposed to have broken up with Kurou in death at the Faura Blanca Institute.

Baki Hanma (Coming 2021)

The story finally unfolds into a full-blooded clash between Baki Hanma and his father, Yujiro Hanma, who is known as the “strongest creature on earth.” The climax of the Baki universe, which depicted the “strongest parent-child brawl in history of the world” in the original manga, has been adapted into the long-awaited anime!

Spriggan

The legendary manga that took the world by storm in the 1990s has been vividly brought to this animated series by utilizing 2D drawings and 3DCG. The legacy of an outstanding civilization that once existed on this planet is said to still be hidden in various parts of the world. The military of major powers has intervened in the excavation and research of this mysterious and powerful heritage, and has begun battling over it. At the same time, an organization called “Spriggan” is working to seal up this ancient civilization. This is a high speed action series featuring battles over ancient relics!

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Gaming

Garmin launches an Instinct smartwatch for esport athletes

Comes with exclusive features too

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Garmin Instinct Esports Edition

Garmin’s line of Instinct smartwatches traditionally caters to outdoor sports, with variants built for running, swimming, and even golfing. Now, the company is introducing a new smartwatch variant that caters to e-sport athletes and gamers  — Garmin Instinct Esports Edition.

For some skeptics, this is not just another Garmin smartwatch though. It actually comes with a unique set of features for esports athletes and gamers. The most unique feature of the smartwatch is the ability to live stream the health data of a gamer to audiences.

Thanks to a dedicated esports activity tracking function, gamers can keep tabs on their heart rate and stress while in a gaming session. A PC tool called STR3AMUP! broadcasts these data to live stream platforms, allowing audiences to see a gamer’s vital info too. That tool also allows customization so gamers can personalize the data to their own liking.

Now, some might be skeptical about this. After all, health data are sensitive information and some audiences might not really find those data useful.

However, Garmin sees potential with their smartwatch all the more thanks to an exclusive live broadcast feature. During a game, gamers can tune in to the new Body Battery  Energy Monitor reading, which combines heart rate, stress, and sleep data to determine their body’s energy.

Same specs as other Instinct smartwatches

Besides those unique selling points, Garmin Instinct Esports Edition is no different from the regular Instinct smartwatch. As such, it has a heart rate monitor, all-day activity tracking, and some smart features like receiving and viewing notifications.

Unfortunately, there is no support for third-party apps like other Garmin smartwatches. Support for music storage isn’t here too.

On the bright side, the smartwatch can stand the extreme elements thanks to a fiber-reinforced polymer body and a water rating of 10ATM. Garmin’s official battery figures are 80 hours in esports mode and 14 days in smartwatch mode.

As for the pricing, the smartwatch starts at US$ 299.99 and comes in a sole Black Lava configuration. Gamers can now purchase it directly from Garmin’s website.

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