Hashtag Trending – Remote work’s downsides; Supercomputer helps COVID-19 research; New iPad Pro goodies

Many people appreciate working from home, but social media is highlighting the downsides, IBM’s supercomputer is already producing results in the ongoing fight against the coronavirus, and the iPad is pretty much a laptop after Apple unveils a keyboard and trackpad.

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There’s a lot of chatter happening right now about remote work, including its downsides. A column from the New York Times is making its way around LinkedIn, which highlights how productivity might improve during remote work, but creativity does not. Not only that, but isolation can stress people out. The column cites Steve Jobs, who was a fierce opponent of remote work, and frequently said how creativity flourishes in an office with other people. Tweet us @itworldca and let us know how you function at home. Does your discipline take a hit? Is it a dream come true? For me, it definitely improves productivity, but I absolutely find it hard to motivate myself when it comes to projects that require serious focus or creativity. That’s usually my cue to go for a short walk or at the very least, grab a bite to eat.

Moving on, OneZero’s story about IBM’s supercomputer helping researchers fight the coronavirus pandemic is trending on Twitter. The IBM-built Summit supercomputer occupies the floor space of two tennis courts at the U.S Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee. It can perform 200 quadrillion calculations each second, which according to the publication, is roughly a million times more computing power than the average laptop. Researchers used that computing might to screen through a library of 8,000 known drug compounds to find those most likely to be effective against the coronavirus. While no cure has been found yet – that can take a very long time, sometimes years – researchers say some of the early results have been promising.

And lastly, Apple dropped some announcements this week that turned heads on Twitter. Apple announced a new keyboard and trackpad for the new iPad Pro, alongside other new products including a $1,000 MacBook and an update to the Mac mini. The new iPad Pro includes a LiDAR scanner – I’m actually kind of curious how people will put that to good use – and boasts a quad-core i7 processor. Oh, and the keyboard and trackpad costs $400 U.S. That should be expected by now, right?

That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now. Hashtag Trending is a part of the ITWC Podcast network. Add us to your Alexa Flash Briefing or your Google Home daily briefing.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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