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When Can You Be Around People Again After You Have COVID-19?

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A Marine stands guard outside the West Wing

Photo: SAUL LOEB / Contributor (Getty Images)

The President stated that he’s “not contagious at all” after spending time in the hospital due to a case of COVID-19, and would like to appear at an in-person debate next week. (The debate commission has said the debate will be remote.) Could he be correct? It’s complicated.

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Counting the days since symptoms first appeared

First, let’s check with the official CDC guidelines. They say that if you know or think you had COVID, and you had symptoms:

You can be around others after:

  • 10 days since symptoms first appeared and
  • 24 hours with no fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and
  • Other symptoms of COVID-19 are improving*

*Loss of taste and smell may persist for weeks or months after recovery and need not delay the end of isolation​

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The President’s medical team has not disclosed when he first tested positive for the coronavirus, nor when symptoms first appeared. According to a timeline assembled by the New York Times, he gave a shorter-than-usual campaign speech on Wednesday, September 30, and the following day (October 1) he had a cough, nasal congestion, and fatigue. His positive test was announced later that night, in the wee hours of Friday, October 2.

If October 1 was the first time he experienced symptoms, he would meet the CDC’s first requirement as of October 11 (this coming Sunday). If symptoms developed earlier, the ten-day mark would be moved back to match.

We don’t really know about his current symptoms

The President has stated that he feels fine, but the checklist doesn’t ask how you feel. The second bullet point relates to being fever-free without medication.

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Some medications can bring down your body temperature even though your body really wants to have a fever. For example, if your toddler has strep throat and feels feverish, you can give them Tylenol. Their fever may disappear, but you still can’t send them to day care, because they’re still sick. Masking the fever doesn’t count.

We do know that Trump received dexamethasone at the hospital, a steroid that reduces inflammation and improves survival rates in people with moderate to severe cases of COVID. Dexamethasone can hide a fever. (It also tends to make people feel amazing, and can cause mood changes and agitation.)

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For COVID, dexamethasone is typically prescribed for up to 10 days or until the patient leaves the hospital. The New York Times reported that he was still receiving the medication at home on Monday, October 5.

Further information, including symptoms and other potentially symptom-masking medications, has not been forthcoming. We know that he has received the antiviral remdesivir and Regeneron’s experimental antibody cocktail, as well as a few supplements like zinc and melatonin, but the updates provided by his medical team have been vague and not very helpful in understanding his health status.

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Recommendations for the rest of us

In addition to the guidelines above, the CDC states that if you have had a severe case of COVID, or if you have a weakened immune system, you may need to stay home (which is called isolation, not quarantine, by the way—quarantine is for people who do not know if they are sick) for 20 days instead of 10. Your doctor will let you know what you should do, and they may recommend further testing to guide the decision.

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If you never had symptoms, only a positive COVID test, the CDC’s recommendation is to stay away from others for 10 days. If you develop symptoms during that time, the 10-day clock resets and the guidelines above apply.

If you haven’t had a test or symptoms yourself, but you have been in close contact with someone who has COVID, you should stay away from others (quarantine) for 14 days after your last contact with that person. This rule would apply to several people within the administration, as it turns out.

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LG’s rollable TV finally goes on sale for $87,000

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LG has announced that its world-first rollable TV is finally going on sale, albeit in limited fashion. The 65-inch LG Signature OLED R is now available at seven consumer electronics store throughout South Korea and will cost 100 million won, or more than $87,000.

The Signature OLED R is built around a flexible OLED panel that LG describes with characteristic restraint as “the most innovative development in television technology in decades.” Because of its flexible nature, it can retract partially or fully into its base, adapting to different aspect ratios or hiding the panel completely when not in use.


“LG’s exquisite creation liberates users from the limitations of the wall, enabling owners to curate their living environment without having to permanently set aside space for a large, black screen that is only useful when turned on,” the company says in a statement. Buyers will be able to choose between four colors for the wool speaker cover, and the aluminum base can be personalized with an engraving.

Unsurprisingly for such an ambitious product, the Signature OLED R has faced a difficult path to market. LG Display first showed off a rollable TV prototype at CES 2018, and Bloomberg later reported that the display would make its way into a shipping product the next year. LG did indeed bring a commercial rollable TV to the next CES with plans to release it in spring 2019, but it never actually went on sale.

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Trump says ‘nobody gets hacked’ but forgot his hotel chain was hacked — twice

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According to President Trump speaking at a campaign event in Tucson, Arizona, on Monday, “nobody gets hacked.” You don’t need someone who covers security day in and day out to call bullshit on this one.

“Nobody gets hacked. To get hacked you need somebody with 197 IQ and he needs about 15 percent of your password,” Trump said, referencing the recent suspension of C-SPAN political editor Steve Scully, who admitted falsely claiming his Twitter account was hacked this week after sending a tweet to former White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci.

There’s a lot to unpack in those two-dozen words. But aside from the fact that not all hackers are male (and it’s sexist to assume that), and glossing over the two entirely contrasting sentences, Trump also neglected to mention that his hotel chain was hacked twice — once over a year-long period between 2014 and 2015 and again between 2016 and 2017.

We know this because the Trump business was legally required to file notice with state regulators after each breach, which they did.

In both incidents, customers of Trump’s hotels had their credit card data stolen. The second breach was blamed on a third-party booking system, called Sabre, which also exposed guest names, emails, phone numbers and more.

The disclosures didn’t say how many people were affected. Suffice it to say, it wasn’t “nobody.”

A spokesperson for the Trump campaign did not return a request for comment.

It’s easy to ignore what could be considered a throwaway line: To say that “nobody gets hacked” might seem harmless on the face of it, but to claim so is dangerous. It’s as bad as saying something is “unhackable” or “hack-proof.” Ask anyone who works in cybersecurity and they’ll tell you that no person or company can ever make such assurances.

Absolute security doesn’t exist. But for those who don’t know any different, it’s an excuse not to think about their own security. Yes, you should use a password manager. Absolutely turn on two-factor authentication whenever you can. Do the basics, because hackers don’t need an IQ score of 197 to break into your accounts. All they need is for you to lower your guard.

If “nobody gets hacked” as Trump claims, it makes you wonder whatever happened to the 400-pound hacker the president mentioned during his first White House run.

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The Mandalorian and Baby Yoda’s adventures continue in brand new look at season two

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The Mandalorian’s second season is just days away from premiering on Disney Plus, and a new trailer for the Star Wars series teases what fans can expect.

Most of the trailer focused on the Mando’s continued adventures with the Child, including an ominous moment where he’s warned that the worlds he’s trying to visit are no places for a child. Much like executive producers Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni teased in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, the show looks like it will tackle more substantial narrative lines than we got in the first season.

Picking up essentially where the last season left off, The Mandalorian’s second season will explore a much “larger story in the world,” according to Favreau. While many of the episodes in the first season could stand on their own as one-offs, the second season will see storylines intertwine even more, Favreau and Filoni told Entertainment Weekly ahead of the second season’s debut.

“Everything gets bigger, the stakes get higher, but also the personal story between the Child and the Mandalorian develops in a way I think people will enjoy,” Filoni said.

With The Mandalorian returning to Disney Plus, it’s an exciting time for Star Wars fans — but it’s also an important moment for the House of Mouse. The Mandalorian launched alongside Disney Plus in November 2019, and since then, Disney Plus has suffered from a lack of original, exciting programming that will bring in and keep subscribers happy. Part of that is because the pandemic made production nearly impossible on shows like The Falcon and the Winter Soldier until recently, but the fact remains: Disney needs something to get people talking again.

Executives are hoping that The Mandalorian’s second season, and its adorable star the Child — aka Baby Yoda — will do for Disney Plus in 2020 what the show did in 2019. If everything goes according to plan, The Mandalorian will roll into WandaVision, Marvel Studios’ next big show, which may roll into another big title. Disney Plus needs that continuous momentum to keep people around, especially as one year free offers from partners like Verizon start to end and Disney will start charging many customers who aren’t paying.

Regardless of whether The Mandalorian helps Disney amass and keep more subscribers, it’s exciting to have more new Star Wars back in our lives. The Mandalorian returns on October 30th.

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