Monday 22 June, 2020

Coronavirus Management: EU vs. USA

Says it all, really.


Coleridge’s childhood home is for sale

Wow! What a glorious pile. 10-bedrooms, 11-bathrooms. The Coleridge family moved to Ottery St Mary in 1760, when John Coleridge became the headmaster of The Kings School. Samuel Taylor was John’s youngest son.

Just check out the library:

From Country Life


Steven Sinofsky on the historical background to wearing masks

Lovely Twitter thread by Steven Sinovsky, liasting cases from the past where there was fierce opposition to taking sensible precautions which eventually became common sense. Examples include:

  • childhood vaccination

  • Helmets for skateboarding

  • Cycle helmets

  • Condoms

  • Smoking in planes and public transport everywhere

One he missed out: seat-belts in cars.

This story is currently being re-enacted with people refusing to wear face-masks in public. There will come a time (hopefully in the not too distant future) when this will seem as absurd as refusal to wear a seat-belt.

Interestingly, my first father-in-law always refused to wear a seat belt. In order to avoid being stopped by the cops, he would drape it diagonally across his chest, but never anchored it.


The UK’s contact tracing app fiasco is a master class in mismanagement

Well, so says the headline on James Ball’s piece in MIT’s Tech Review. But actually the article is more nuanced than that. It also has a useful explanation of two key issues that lay at the root of the problems: Bluetooth power management in smartphones; and the trade-off between the need to preserve user privacy on the one hand and Public Health England’s (understandable) desire to detect outbreaks quickly. Johnson’s bluster about ‘world-beating’ didn’t help either. The eagerness of this Cabinet of half-assed Brexiteers to boast of British exceptionalism is pathetic.

James’s piece is worth reading in full, for those who are interested in these matters.


Quarantine diary — Day 93

Link