CoronaVac has cleared another important hurdle: On 11 January, the Indonesian Ulema Council issued a fatwa declaring the vaccine halal, or permissible under Islamic law. Many vaccines contain pork gelatin as a stabilizer, and in 2018, a new measles-rubella vaccine was declared haram, or forbidden, in Indonesia for that reason. It’s not clear whether CoronaVac contains elements of porcine origin as well, but Muslim scholars have decided the shots are halal in any case because the pandemic is an emergency. Sadikin has asked religious leaders in Muhammadiyah and Nahdlatul Ulama, the country’s two biggest Islamic organizations, for support for the new vaccine, and both have since said it is an obligation for every Muslim to get vaccinated. … [Read more...] about COVID-19 cases are soaring in Indonesia. Can a new health minister turn things around?
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Weirdly odd Echos Kudos to Amazon for experimenting with new ideas. The company offers six additional Echo products in varying degrees of usefulness and weirdness. We'll just run them down quickly here, because if you're buying your first Echo, none of these should be that Echo. But, if you are already considerably invested in the Alexa ecosystem, then you might want to pick one of these up. … [Read more...] about Best Alexa device to buy in 2021: Pick the best Echo for you
They're also fast. As I was writing this Wednesday while the House of Representatives was in the process of voting to impeach Trump for the second time, the related Wikipedia page was changing as events unfolded. By 5 p.m. PT, about four hours after the vote, it was more than 5,600 words long with 146 citations and growing. But the speed isn't just for current events. A favorite example of mine is when an airline announces a new route (I told you I was a nerd). I guarantee that if you go to the airline's article minutes later, the update will be there. … [Read more...] about In a post-truth world, we need Wikipedia more than ever
April 21, 2020: Huawei reports 1.4% revenue increase for the first quarter of 2020 as it grapples with the coronavirus pandemic. Also, senior British official reportedly says UK is unlikely to reconsider "firm" decision to allow Huawei access to non-sensitive parts of its 5G network. … [Read more...] about Huawei ban timeline: Follow the saga of the Chinese telecommunications giant
As for what we're missing, I'm not sure I'm upset about being out of the loop around the virtual water cooler about Sharknado 3. I have lost access to sports channels—including MASN, the network co-owned by the Orioles and Washington Senators Expos Nationals. ESPN, NBC Sports and Fox Sports. But there is a bar five blocks from my house that has all those channels on seven days a week, and National Bohemian is something you need to drink in the compay of others anyway. Besides, based on what I'm saving I can take the family to the ballpark at least twice a month, concessions included. … [Read more...] about I finally kicked cable TV to the curb