As many of us contemplate major life changes in reaction to the pandemic, grief expert David Kessler offers some advice

Photo: Guilherme Stecanella

By Ruth Reader

My mother died of cancer when I was 25. The six months that contained the-rest-of-her-life were both fleeting and excruciatingly long. The good days snapped shut like the shutter on a camera. The bad days were months long. On the bad days, we howled at the moon: How much longer can we go on like this? When she died, in a hospital, against both of our wishes, she had been captive there for weeks. I felt powerless to a doctor who refused to return my phone calls and a disease that didn’t care what we wanted.

Afterward…

Apple’s latest update completely ruined the app’s UX and destroyed my painstakingly curated podcast library

Photo: Austin Distel

By Joe Berkowitz

Never before has a phone update felt more like a blatant act of hostility.

As I’d last left my Apple podcasting app, on pause after a dish-washing catchup on You’re Wrong About, all my audio files were in a pristine, easily accessible queue. I woke up yesterday to find them decimated to a smoldering rubble. Nothing was in its right place, many podcasts had just plain vanished, and worst of all, the damage wasn’t even the result of a glitch, but rather an ostensible improvement. …

Though it owns just 0.02% of the company, the fund convinced big investors to vote for three new board members with backgrounds in clean energy. But will they be able to actually change how Exxon operates?

By Adele Peters

The board of ExxonMobil, the largest oil company in the United States, includes the CEO of Merck and the former CEO of Caterpillar. They now have some new colleagues: three board members that the fossil fuel company didn’t want — and who plan to push for a coherent plan to address climate change. That’s thanks to Engine No. 1, a hedge fund that didn’t even exist a year ago.

Chris James, the investor who launched the investment firm in late November 2020, isn’t a climate activist. In fact, in the mid-2000s, James helped open a new coal…

We talk to Apple’s software chief about iCloud Private Relay and other upcoming protections — and why regulation alone won’t help consumers defend their data

WWDC. Screenshot: Apple

By Michael Grothaus

Apple’s annual Worldwide Developer’s Conference kicked off today. As with last year, the company opted to hold the event remotely due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. But that didn’t stop Apple from showing off a host of new products, including iOS 15, iPadOS 15, MacOS Monterey, WatchOS 8, and the all-new iCloud Plus subscription service. Another similarity to last year’s WWDC: Many of those new products are not only packed with cool new features but also underlying privacy enhancements.

Indeed, new privacy protections have become one of the most important reasons to look forward to Apple’s annual…

New changes to Apple’s venerable videoconferencing app make it a more formidable option for personal and business use

Photo: Apple

By Mark Sullivan

The major new FaceTime upgrade that Apple previewed at WWDC seems designed for a post-pandemic world where many of our meetings will remain virtual.

Many of us will return to the office in some fashion, but one of the lessons of the pandemic is that we can save on gas and aggravation by doing some of our meetings from home. The pandemic was Zoom’s big break, but other tech companies, perhaps sensing a future for remote work, have polished up their videoconferencing solutions. Now Apple is one of them. …

In February 2021, Dispo was the hot app defining a new generation of photo sharing. Then a scandal forced founder David Dobrik to step down.

Photo: Marie-Michèle Bouchard

By Nicole LaPorte

Just four months ago, Dispo, the photo-sharing app that allows users to take retro-style pictures that they can’t see until 9 a.m. the next morning — much like a disposable camera — looked unbeatable. It had a fresh take on the single-most-popular digital activity for a generation stressed out by the pressures of Instagram perfection. It had the funding to grow and a buzzy valuation of $200 million for an app still in beta. It scored a splashy New York Times profile. Most of all, it had David Dobrik, perhaps the most successful digital creator of the…

Making police footage requests public is a positive move, but privacy advocates say Amazon’s security camera brand needs to go further

Photo: Ring

By Jared Newman

At the very least, Amazon seems to be listening.

After years of criticism from civil liberties groups and privacy advocates, Amazon will no longer let police privately ask users of its Ring products such as smart doorbells to share video footage their cameras have captured. Instead, police will have to make those requests in public via Ring’s Neighbors app, where anyone — including people who don’t own any Ring products — can see them.

Amazon is also setting some boundaries on what police can ask for in the first place. They can’t seek footage from longer than…

Targeting different sources of mental fatigue can help make your time away from work be more restorative

Photo: S Migaj

By Art Markman

Over the past decade, it has become clearer to many that being “on” 24/7/365 is not a recipe for success. Discussions about work-life balance and the need to take vacations are signs that we understand that getting away from work is important for mental and physical health.

It’s useful to dig a little more into what you’re trying to accomplish with your downtime, though. The more you understand about what you’re trying to achieve, the easier it becomes to recognize when you might need to take a little extra time away from work. …

A series of audits find the Everything Store’s algorithms recommending falsehoods about the coronavirus, vaccines, and more

Photo: Amanda Jones

By Alex Pasternack

Search for “vaccines” on Amazon’s bookstore, and a banner encourages shoppers to “learn more” about COVID-19, with a link to the Centers for Disease Control. But the text almost vanishes amid the eye-catching book covers spreading out below, many of which carry Amazon’s orange “bestseller” badge.

One top-ranked book that promises “the other side of the story” of vaccine science is #1 on Amazon’s list for “Health Policy.” Next to it, smiling infants grace the cover of the top-selling book in “Teen Health,” co-authored by an Oregon pediatrician whose license was suspended last year over an approach…

Here’s how to work with your colleagues feeling emotionally drained from the pandemic

Photo: Annie Spratt

By Eddie Medina

I feel depleted. I can’t come up for air. I’m just going through the motions. I don’t know how long I can keep this up.

This is languishing in the workforce. If you’re leading people — if your business depends on people performing well — ignore it at your peril.

By now, many know languishing as the “meh” in our COVID-19-narrowed lives, that feeling of empty stagnation at the core of an emotionally draining year. But it isn’t a new concept. Based on BetterUp’s prepandemic research, it impacts up to 55% of employees.

Imagine not just one…

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