What it’s like to start a new job during the COVID-19 pandemic

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Just hours after receiving an offer for a software engineering job, I learned my new company’s office would close due to the coronavirus—and I’d have to onboard remotely. In early February, I moved to New York City and was on the job hunt. But though I was lucky to receive and accept an offer just before the coronavirus pandemic began to shut down the entire city, little did I know that all the new, exciting, and nerve-wracking prospects of starting a new job were soon to become an entirely different kind of challenge. Read Full Story

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This interactive tool lets you experiment with different COVID-19 reopening strategies

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See how different decisions affect the death toll and the economy. Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, researchers have been working on ways to model the spread of the novel coronavirus—and its effects on the economy. They’ve used temperature data to predict hotspots , cough simulations to model the virus’s aerosol spread , and location data to model the risk of exposure. The issue, though, is that there are so many factors at play: whether people are working from home or not, how they’re shopping, and if they’re wearing masks all have an impact on not just the public health of a city, but its businesses, as well. And no two cities are the same. Read Full Story

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How to watch the 2020 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade live on NBC or free without cable

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The parade will be smaller this year. The balloons will hopefully be just as exciting. It goes without saying, but the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade will look a bit different this year. The normal stretch of two and a half miles has been reduced to a small area around the company’s flagship store in New York City, and—thanks to the coronavirus pandemic—there will be no live audience. Read Full Story

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They both work for Amazon. Their experience of the pandemic couldn’t be more different

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Conversations with two Amazon employees—one who works in marketing, and one who works as a Prime shopper—reveal the discrepancies in how different workers at the tech giant have weathered the pandemic. After living in New York City for more than a decade, Rob*, 35, didn’t think he’d be headed back to the suburbs. “I never thought that I would be moving home with my mom with no idea on what was next,” he says. But this unexpected reality hit at the end of summer, months into the pandemic, during which he lost his full-time job and started logging overtime hours at Whole Foods as an Amazon Prime Now Shopper. Read Full Story

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Location-based salaries will kill your startup’s culture

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This startup’s founder warns that reducing salaries to save a few bucks isn’t worth the damage you’ll do to team culture and morale. 2020 has inspired all of us to do some soul-searching. We’re asking ourselves big questions about what we value, how we want to spend our time, and where we want to be in life. As a result, people are making moves. My company is based in New York City, but throughout the last few months, I’ve had employees move to Idaho, Florida, Virginia, California, and Colorado. Some are looking to escape city life after the pandemic magnified its flaws, and others are choosing to live closer to family and friends. Whatever their reasons, I’m now managing team members with drastically different costs of living. Read Full Story

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Post-pandemic public transit may not end up looking all that different—but its goals may have to change

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Concept designs with plexiglass shields probably aren’t coming to transit. Instead, cities have to figure out how to make the systems safe and useful for the people who don’t have a choice but to use them. As cities start to reopen, packed rush-hour subway rides seem like they’ll have to become a thing of the past: It’s hard to social distance on a packed train. But transit will still be crucial for helping people—especially lower-income residents—get around, and experts say straphangers will be back even before COVID-19 has been controlled. So what does that mean for the trains of our future? Read Full Story

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100 apartments in 8 months: How Toronto built housing for the homeless at breakneck speed

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The city used modular architecture to respond to a dire need for housing during a deadly pandemic. The project could be a model for other cities—during COVID-19 and beyond. In the face of overlapping crises, the city of Toronto has created a fast track to house people experiencing homelessness. As the impacts of the pandemic quickly hit this community harder than others, the city accelerated its efforts to build permanent supportive housing, using modular architecture. Just a few months after the project was launched, the city will have 100 new apartments. Read Full Story

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