Computer

We’ve been working from home for 5 months. Here’s what we learned.

We've been working from home for 5 months. Here's what we learned.
We’ve been working from home for 5 months. Here’s what we learned.

Like many, many others around the world, we’ve been working from home for close to six months here at Mashable due to the coronavirus pandemic. We miss our coworkers and our lunch spots, but we’ve managed to get by knowing we’re fortunate to be able to work from home at all.

Since we work on the internet, a big part of “getting by” has been learning the myriad ways tech can help and hinder us throughout the day. With that in mind, here are just a few of the basics that we and other remote workers have had to internalize and make part of our daily routines while our lives were turned upside down by the pandemic. We know you’d prefer to be back at the office or out with your friends, but take these tips to heart

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Get paid for your opinions

You’ve heard the expression “a penny for your thoughts”? Dozens of companies would like you to take the expression literally. They’ll pay for opinions. A number of them will pay considerably more than a penny.

Most of the companies willing to pay for opinions are market research firms that help big companies package their products or make their websites more user-friendly. However, a few work with lawyers, who need to know how a case will be received by jurors. Conveniently, in these days of COVID-19, many pay-for-opinion jobs are done from home on a computer or phone.

Here’s a quick rundown of some of the better ways to get paid for opinions. But don’t expect this to replace your full-time job. The well-paid options are sporadic, at best. Poorly paid options are abundant — worth your time only if you’ve got nothing else to do.

That said, if you can’t

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Motorists in a jam as Covid-19 leaves them waiting months for DVLA documents

<span>Photograph: John Stillwell/PA</span>
Photograph: John Stillwell/PA

Frustrated car owners have been waiting months for vital documents and left unclear about whether they can legally drive their vehicles because of a backlog of applications caused by the coronavirus crisis.

In the past few months, licence renewals and changes to vehicle registration (V5C) documents have been backing up at the Driver Vehicle Licensing Agency’s Swansea offices, leaving thousands of people waiting months to get them back.

Since Guardian Money wrote about the case of a driver struggling to get hold of a car logbook, readers have swamped our Consumer Champions’ inbox with reports of long delays and how impossible it has become to contact the UK government agency.

Those sending off their driving licence or V5C document for routine changes of address report waiting months. Some, with more complex cases, say they have been waiting since January for applications to be dealt with.

While many

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Colleges could reopen if they test students every 2 days; Fauci ‘cautiously optimistic’ for vaccine this year

In its biggest coronavirus vaccine deal yet, the U.S. said Friday it will pay French pharmaceutical company Sanofi and Great Britain’s GlaxoSmithKline up to $2.1 billion to test and produce 100 million doses of an experimental coronavirus vaccine.

The deal is part of Operation Warp Speed, a White House-led initiative aimed at getting a vaccine to stop SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

On Capitol Hill, Dr. Anthony Fauci testified Friday before a special House panel. He told the committee that he’s “cautiously optimistic” that by late fall or early winter a vaccine now being tested would be deemed safe and effective.

Also in Washington, the extra $600 in federal unemployment aid that helped many Americans stay afloat amid the coronavirus pandemic is expiring as plans for additional stimulus stalled in a deadlocked Senate.

Here are some significant developments:

  • A new survey shows fewer Americans want to resume daily activities

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Infection growth slows in California, but deaths surge

California overall is not experiencing the same alarming surge in COVID-19 infections as it did in late June and early July, but record-breaking death tolls reported this week underscore the continued seriousness of the coronavirus pandemic.

California set a new record Wednesday when it reported its highest COVID-19 death toll in a single day with 197 dead. On Thursday, the state reported another 194 deaths, the second highest single-day coronavirus death toll thus far.

Deaths have dramatically increased from the flat-line levels in May and June: As of Thursday, an average of 112 people died from the virus in California every day over the last two weeks. Two weeks ago, about 84 people died every day on average over a two-week period.

Some of those deaths, however, may have occurred several days or weeks ago because of the verification process used by local health officials.

In the last week, California

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Coronavirus child care pinch in U.S. poses threat to economic gains of working women

By Jonnelle Marte and Rachel Dissell

CLEVELAND (Reuters) – Most days, Zora Pannell works from her dining room table, sitting in front of her computer, turning off the video on Zoom calls to nurse her one-year-old daughter, Savannah.

Pannell has balanced working from home and caring for her daughter and son Timothy, aged 2, since March when she started a new job as a manager for a language services company the same week that Ohio issued a “stay at home” order to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Working from home is an exhausting daily juggle but she’s more worried about being told it’s time to return to the office. Her husband cannot watch the children during the day because he has a job at a local steel mill and the couple have been unable to find a daycare center they deemed safe and affordable close to their Shaker Heights

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Here’s what every parent needs to know

Yahoo Life is committed to finding you the best products at the best prices. The product written about here is offered in affiliation with Yahoo Life’s parent company, Verizon Media.

Kids are prime targets for identity theives because they have no credit histories and no one is checking. (Photo: Getty/iStockphoto)
Kids are prime targets for identity theives because they have no credit histories and no one is checking. (Photo: Getty/iStockphoto)

One day, a 12-year-old receives a notice from the IRS informing her that she hasn’t paid her income taxes for last year. Meanwhile in the next town over, a 2-year-old is being hounded by debt collectors for an outstanding credit card balance of $15,000. 

No, it’s not the setup for a new episode of ‘The Twilight Zone.’ These scenarios—and worse—happen in real life all the time. More than one million children were victims of identity theft in 2017, according to a report by Javelin Strategy & Research. Cleaning up this kind of mess isn’t easy, either: Child identity theft cost

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As representation debate rages, Latinx creators tell Hollywood: ‘Just open the door’

TV writers Diana Mendez, left, and Judalina Neira formed the Latina TV Writers Brunch Group and La Lista to represent the Latina community in Hollywood. <span class="copyright">(Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)</span>
TV writers Diana Mendez, left, and Judalina Neira formed the Latina TV Writers Brunch Group and La Lista to represent the Latina community in Hollywood. (Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)

The outrage was instant and loud. And warranted.

No Latinx creatives appeared in any of the major categories when nominations for the 72nd Emmy Awards were announced earlier this week. How is that even possible, people raged, especially given “One Day at a Time’s” tongue-in-cheek laughs, “Vida’s” queer joy and “Los Espookys'” oddball humor?

The erasure of Latinos is not exactly news, though. Over the last five years, 82% of nominees in 19 Primetime Emmy categories were white. A mere 1% were Latino.

As the subsequent backlash to this year’s nominations reignites debate about Hollywood’s failure to represent Latinx characters on-screen, a movement toward inclusion behind the camera is taking place behind the scenes.

One morning in 2015, about

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Remote learning turns kids into zombies because we’re doing it all wrong

“Hey mom! There’s someone leaving a garbage bag on our front porch,” shouts my sixth grader from his makeshift home office in the living room. Scooping the lopsided bag off the porch I notice both fourth and sixth grade kiddos are now hovering around me as if I’m Indiana Jones unearthing the Holy Grail. That small things are so gripping during this time never ceases to surprise me.

Both kids watch in anticipation as I open the bag and slowly realize what I’m unpacking. Five composition notebooks, three-quarters used. A bag of highlighters, markers and pencils with plenty of life left. And the kicker: the magnetic locker organizer. My son’s first year in middle school meant his first time having a locker. He was so proud of this small milestone on the path towards independence with the opportunity to organize his own learning in some small way. And so, the

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What the Mashable staff bought this month: July 2020 edition

What the Mashable staff bought this month: July 2020 edition
What the Mashable staff bought this month: July 2020 edition

Who else is finding themselves online shopping way more often lately? Over at Mashable, it’s happening to a lot of us. Maybe it’s boredom. Maybe it’s that we’re longing to fill some sort of void with material possessions. Yeah, it’s probably one of those two things.

SEE ALSO: What the Mashable staff bought in June

Reasons for rampant online shopping aside, we’re back again to share with you all the cool stuff we bought this month to hopefully inspire our fine readers to treat themselves, just like we did. Come on, we’ve all been living through tough times (that show no signs of stopping anytime soon) — you deserve to hit that “buy” button on that thing you’ve been wanting. Go ahead, do it.

Below, what the Mashable staff bought in July (along with some familiar faces from our friends

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