How to Work from Home (effectively)

In light of the rapid spread of infectious disease, Nicholas Thompson, editor-in-chief of WIRED, gives advice on working from home:


How do you work from home?

My colleague Brian Barrett, one of the most efficient employees at WIRED, lives in Alabama and has written a great guide to working at home. His advice:

Number one: Get dressed. If you try to do your work in your pajamas, you will be sleepy. You need to, in certain ways, operate like you're going into the office.

Number two: Have a set space. Have a place where you really do your work. Part of the reasons we're more efficient generally in offices is we come in, we have the mindset of, OK, now I'm going to work.

Number three: Communicate constantly with your colleagues on Slack or whatever software you use for interoffice communication. One of the things Brian does is he's constantly jumping into different Slack conversations, in part because he's missing out on some of the watercooler conversations that happen in our offices. So, he's very, very good at that.

Rule number four: Do not have the television on. If you have a distraction, if you allow yourself to get sucked into CNN or allow yourself to get sucked into Netflix. If you allow yourself to get sucked into all the stuff, it's easy to get sucked into in your home, but you would never get sucked into in your office, you will not be productive. You have to work in your home office like you would in your work office.

And this last bit of advice: make sure you go outside every now and then. Work from a coffee shop every couple of days. At least take a walk because you don't want to be stuck in your home office all the time.

Brazil's governors take on Bolsonaro: We've previously written about the tensions between local and national governments over coronavirus response, but few places have had it as bad as Brazil. As COVID-19 infections surged in Brazil, the country's governors quickly mobilized – often with scarce resources – to enforce citywide lockdowns. Brazil's gangs have even risen to the occasion, enforcing strict curfews to limit the virus' spread in Rio de Janeiro. But Brazil's president, Jair Bolsonaro, has mocked the seriousness of the disease and urged states to loosen quarantines in order to get the economy up and running again. "Put the people to work," he said this week, "Preserve the elderly; preserve those who have health problems. But nothing more than that." In response, governors around the country – including some of his allies – issued a joint letter to the president, begging him to listen to health experts and help states contain the virus. The governor of Sao Paulo, Brazil's economic powerhouse, has even threatened to sue the federal government if Bolsonaro continues to undermine his efforts to combat the virus' spread.

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Governments of the developed world are finally responding with due sense of urgency, individually in 3 different ways.

1st, stand health care systems up so they won't get overwhelmed (late responses). The private & public sector together, building additional ICU beds, supply capacity and production of medical equipment and surge medical personnel in the US, Canada, across Europe & the UK. Unclear if we avoid a Northern Italy scenario. A couple days ago, Dr. Fauci from the NIH said he was hopeful. Epidemiologists and critical care doctors don't feel comfortable. Not in New York, Chicago, LA, Boston, Philadelphia, New Orleans. In Europe, particularly London, Madrid, Catalonia, Barcelona, might be significantly short.

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The major outbreaks of coronavirus in China, Europe, and the United States have garnered the most Western media attention in recent weeks. Yesterday, we went behind the headlines to see how Mexico and Russia are faring. Today, we'll look at three other potential hotspots where authorities and citizens are now contending with the worst global pandemic in a century.

Start with India. For weeks, coronavirus questions hovered above that other country with a billion-plus people, a famously chaotic democracy where the central government can't simply order a Chinese-scale public lockdown with confidence that it will be respected. It's a country where 90 percent of people work off the books— without a minimum wage, a pension, a strong national healthcare system, or a way to work from home.

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In the end, it took the coronavirus to break the year-long deadlock in Israeli politics. Prime Minister Benjamin "Bibi" Netanyahu will still face corruption charges, but he has yet another new lease on political life, as he and political rival Benny Gantz cut a deal yesterday: Bibi will continue as prime minister, with Gantz serving as Speaker of the Knesset, Israel's parliament. After 18 months, Gantz will take over as prime minister, but many doubt that will ever happen.

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