Coronavirus lockdown 2.0 deepens divisions in Israel

JERUSALEM (AP) — When Israel went into lockdown last spring, Jerusalem pub owner Leon Shvartz moved quickly to save his business — shifting to a delivery and takeaway model that kept him afloat throughout the summer. Then came the second lockdown.

With restaurants and shops shuttered again, Shvartz’s business is struggling to survive. He has laid off 16 of his 17 employees.

By contrast, Israeli software maker Bizzabo, which operates in the hard-hit conference-management sector, quickly reinvented itself last spring by offering “virtual events.” It has more than doubled its sales and is expanding its workforce.


Such tales of boom and bust reflect Israel’s growing “digital divide.”

Even before the pandemic, Israel had one of the largest income gaps and poverty rates among developed economies, with a few high earners, mostly in the lucrative high-tech sector, while many Israelis barely get by as civil servants, in service industries or as

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Alcohol use changed right after COVID-19 lockdown — ScienceDaily

One in four adults reported a change in alcohol use almost immediately after stay-at-home orders were issued, according to a study of twins led by Washington State University researchers.

The study, published recently in Frontiers in Psychiatry, surveyed more than 900 twin pairs from the Washington State Twin Registry from March 26 to April 5, 2020, just after stay-at-home orders were issued in Washington on March 23. An estimated 14% of survey respondents said they drank more alcohol than the week prior and reported higher levels of stress and anxiety than those who did not drink alcohol and those whose use stayed the same.

“We expected that down the road people might turn to alcohol after the stay-at-home orders were issued, but apparently it happened right off the bat,” said Ally Avery, lead author of the study and a scientific operations manager at WSU’s Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine.

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Lights, camera, fashion: Chanel show goes ahead as Paris tightens lockdown

Bruno Pavlovsky is in a good mood. It is Monday evening, and the president of Chanel’s fashion division has just received confirmation from the French government that the house’s catwalk show can go ahead the following morning.

The show, staged before 500 masked guests under the glass domes of the Grand Palais on the final day of Paris Fashion Week, had been running against the clock. Earlier on Monday, the French government ordered the closure of all bars and cafés in Paris for two weeks from Tuesday as new coronavirus infections rose to 11,500 daily.

Nevertheless, many fashion houses, including LVMH-owned Louis Vuitton and Dior, have gone ahead with live shows.

“The show is the best way to present the collection,” Pavlovsky insists. The company was forced to cancel its Cruise show in Capri in May, and instead debuted the collection online via video in June. Although it reached an

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Vedanta’s Profit Tumbles as India Lockdown Hurts Output, Demand

(Bloomberg) — Billionaire Anil Agarwal’s Indian commodities conglomerate Vedanta Ltd. posted a 23.5% drop in quarterly profit as one of the world’s strictest lockdowns hit production and demand.



a man walking down a street next to a river: Police officers walk along an empty road during a lockdown imposed due to the coronavirus in Mumbai, India, on Monday, June 1, 2020. Despite a strict two-month-long lockdown, the outbreak in India’s financial capital has snowballed, with the city now accounting for nearly a quarter of India’s more than 4,700 deaths and more a fifth of India’s over 165,000 infections.


© Bloomberg
Police officers walk along an empty road during a lockdown imposed due to the coronavirus in Mumbai, India, on Monday, June 1, 2020. Despite a strict two-month-long lockdown, the outbreak in India’s financial capital has snowballed, with the city now accounting for nearly a quarter of India’s more than 4,700 deaths and more a fifth of India’s over 165,000 infections.

Group net income slumped to 10.33 billion rupees ($141 million) in the three months to June from 13.51 billion rupees a year earlier, the company said in a statement late Saturday. Sales fell 25.9% to 156.87 billion rupees.

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Vedanta’s main businesses include zinc, aluminum and oil and gas, all of which have been hit by a

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Pets linked to maintaining better mental health and reducing loneliness during lockdown, new research shows — ScienceDaily

Sharing a home with a pet appeared to act as a buffer against psychological stress during lockdown, a new survey shows.

Most people who took part in the research perceived their pets to be a source of considerable support during the lockdown period (23 March — 1 June, 2020).

The study — from the University of York and the University of Lincoln — found that having a pet was linked to maintaining better mental health and reducing loneliness. Around 90 per cent of the 6,000 participants who were from the UK had at least one pet. The strength of the human-animal bond did not differ significantly between species with the most common pets being cats and dogs followed by small mammals and fish.

More than 90 per cent of respondents said their pet helped them cope emotionally with the lockdown and 96 per cent said their pet helped keep them

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Dreamscape Education And Defense Business Surges In Lockdown

Last week, Dreamscape Immersive announced the creation of Dreamscape Learn, an VR education platform now in development with Arizona State University. Over one hundred fifty designers, coders, and educators will work collaboratively to create immersive learning curricula on the Tempe campus. The first course, an entirely immersive approach to introductory biology, takes place inside of Dreamscape’s signature VR adventure Alien Zoo, which will serve as a virtual laboratory for students to explore, observe and solve problems. Michael Crow, President of ASU, said “Dreamscape Learn will take education into the 21st Century, where students become scientists working within pods in an Alien Zoo to study evolutionary biology.” 

Dreamscape Learn is expected to be available to students in 2021 with rapid expansion into other subjects by 2022. “Education is not a new direction for us. They’re in the founding DNA of the company,” said Parkes, “This is what Artamin, our Swiss

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Study investigates the influence of lockdown on geodetic measurements — ScienceDaily

Emerging use of Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) makes it possible to continuously measure shallow changes in elevation of Earth surface. A study by the University of Bonn now shows that the quality of these measurements may have improved significantly during the pandemic, at least at some stations. The results show which factors should be considered in the future when installing GPS antennas. More precise geodetic data are important for assessing flood risks and for improving earthquake early warning systems. The journal Geophysical Research Letters now reports on this.

A number of countries went into politically decreed late hibernation at the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. Many of those affected by the lockdown suffered negative economic and social consequences. Geodesy, a branch of the Earth Science to study Earth’s gravity field and its shape, on the other hand, has benefited from the drastic reduction in human activity. At least that

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