Employees To Get Permanent Work From Home Through Summer 2021



  • 90% employees don’t want to a rigid office schedule: Dropbox’s internal survey
  • Employees can make their own schedules in the new ‘virtual first’ policy
  • Dropbox will set up collaboration spaces called ‘Dropbox Studios’ 

Cloud services company Dropbox is allowing its employees to work from home permanently, as part of its new ‘virtual first’ approach, it announced Tuesday in a blog post.

All employees of Dropbox have been working from home since March when the pandemic triggered lockdowns. This mandatory work-from-home policy has now been extended until June 2021. The change comes after an internal survey by the company suggested that nearly 90% of employees feel productive at home and don’t want to return to a rigid five-day in-office workweek.

Dropbox is the latest to join technology companies including Microsoft, Twitter, Slack, and Facebook to announce permanent work-from-home policies.

“Remote work will be the primary experience for all employees and the day-to-day default for individual work,” Dropbox said in the blog post.

With the coronavirus pandemic upsetting the conventional work culture around the world, Dropbox is using the opportunity to introduce changes to its internal working.

In the blog post, the company said it would be changing its current offices into flexible co-working spaces — Dropbox Studios — designed especially for collaboration rather than solo work. The utilization of the co-working spaces in San Francisco, Seattle and Austin, and Dublin in Ireland, will depend on the teams’ needs. More co-working spaces could be set up if they turn out to be successful.

The company is also introducing ‘non-linear workdays,’ allowing employees to make their own schedules between time zones beyond Dropbox’s core collaboration hours. Dropbox will also facilitate employees’ relocation to other cities where it has offices.

“As our workforce grows more distributed, this will help balance collaboration with

States that reopened sooner, such as Texas, Arizona and Florida, experienced summer surges, report says — ScienceDaily


For every two deaths attributed to COVID-19 in the U.S., a third American dies as a result of the pandemic, according to new data publishing Oct. 12 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The study, led by researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University, shows that deaths between March 1 and Aug. 1 increased 20% compared to previous years — maybe not surprising in a pandemic. But deaths attributed to COVID-19 only accounted for 67% of those deaths.

“Contrary to skeptics who claim that COVID-19 deaths are fake or that the numbers are much smaller than we hear on the news, our research and many other studies on the same subject show quite the opposite,” said lead author Steven Woolf, M.D., director emeritus of VCU’s Center on Society and Health.

The study also contains suggestive evidence that state policies on reopening early in April and May may have fueled the surges experienced in June and July.

“The high death counts in Sun Belt states show us the grave consequences of how some states responded to the pandemic and sound the alarm not to repeat this mistake going forward,” said Woolf, a professor in the Department of Family Medicine and Population Health at the VCU School of Medicine.

Total death counts in the U.S. are remarkably consistent from year to year, as the study notes. The study authors pulled data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for 2014 to 2020, using regression models to predict expected deaths for 2020.

The gap between reported COVID-19 deaths and all unexpected deaths can be partially explained by delays in reporting COVID-19 deaths, miscoding or other data limitations, Woolf said. But the pandemic’s other ripple effects could explain more.

“Some people who never had the virus may have died because of disruptions caused

Coronavirus infections among school-age kids rose in the summer, CDC says


Keen to send the nation’s kids back to reopened schools, President Trump has called children “virtually immune,” “essentially immune” and “almost immune” to the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.

a group of people sitting at a table: Second-graders listen to teacher Darsi Green at Weaverville Elementary School in California. (Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times)

© Provided by The LA Times
Second-graders listen to teacher Darsi Green at Weaverville Elementary School in California. (Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times)

But a new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention underscores how wrong those assertions are.

Children can catch, suffer and die from the coronavirus, according to the report released Monday. Between March 1 and Sept. 19, at least 277,285 schoolchildren in 38 states tested positive for the virus.

And 51 of them — including 20 children between ages 5 and 11 — died of COVID-19. In all, 3,189 children between 5 and 17 were hospitalized.

School-aged children with asthma and other chronic lung diseases accounted for roughly 55% of those who tested positive, and almost 10% had some kind of disability.

As with adults, Latino children far outpaced their share of the population in testing positive, accounting for 46% of those who tested positive during the 6½-month period studied by the CDC.

And although Trump has said he does not believe school-aged children get sick from the virus, at least 58% of those who tested positive — and possibly more than 9 in 10 — had symptoms at the time they were tested, the CDC reported.

The new research, released Monday as a CDC “Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report,” is one of the public health agency’s first efforts to count and characterize coronavirus infections in the nation’s school-aged population. As a new school year resumes and some schools reopen to students, the new accounting will provide a “critical” baseline that will let public health officials discern trends in infections among school-aged children.

Dr. William Hanage, a

Antarctica, the only continent without coronavirus, braces for summer rotation


  • Antarctica, the coldest and most isolated part of the world, is the only continent still untouched by the coronavirus. 
  • But as Antarctica’s harsh winter comes to a close, critical global efforts are underway to ensure that incoming colleagues for the summer rotation do not bring Covid-19 to the continent. 
  • “It’s almost scary how lucky we are. Out of all the people on the planet, we’re the ones who aren’t experiencing it,” said Karin Jansdotter, who’s lived in an Antarctica research station for nearly a year. 

a close up of a car window: Antarctica Flights operates 12-hour sightseeing tours over the continent that take off and land on the same day.

© Provided by CNBC
Antarctica Flights operates 12-hour sightseeing tours over the continent that take off and land on the same day.

The coronavirus has ravaged the world now for nine months, with people across the globe enduring lockdowns of varying intensities, workplace and school shutdowns and restrictions on group gatherings. 


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Yet there’s still one continent that’s been untouched by the virus: Antarctica, the coldest and most isolated part of the world. 

“It’s absolutely mental to think about,” said Karin Jansdotter, who has lived with five other people in an Antarctica research station for nearly a year and has missed the pandemic entirely.

“It’s almost scary how lucky we are. Out of all the people on the planet, we’re the ones who aren’t experiencing it,” she said. 

Roughly 1,020 people have lived in darkness and isolation at various base stations throughout Antarctica during the harsh winter months. But as winter comes to a close, teams across Antarctica are preparing not only for summer research plans, but critical global efforts to ensure that incoming colleagues for the summer rotation do not bring Covid-19 to the continent. 

Even in non-pandemic circumstances, few people are allowed in and out of Antarctica, which does not have the capacity to contain an illness spread given its remoteness and

IT Consulting M&A Report Summer time 2009


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