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This $499 magic mirror could make you fitter than ever

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Anyone who’s ever tried to lose more than a few pounds knows the harsh raw power of the bathroom mirror and the bathroom scales. For some of us, weighing in every day and looking at ourselves naked is all the motivation we need to hit the gym and eat better. 

For others, however, it can be the opposite — because it can provide a distorted picture of how well your new diet and exercise routine is working for you. Build muscle and you’ll be healthier, for example, but you may also weigh a little more. A mirror can’t show how your body is changing on the inside.

Body fat measurement is where it’s at, but good luck getting a set of scales that can tell your fat percentage with any accuracy; they’re generally anything up to 8% out.

The Naked 3D Fitness Tracker, which goes on pre-order Thursday for $499, seems poised to change the whole body measurement game. It’s an amazing, high-tech, beautifully-designed system saddled with a questionable name. 

Naked Labs, the Ph.D-filled Silicon Valley startup behind the device, missed a trick not calling this the magic mirror. Because that’s exactly what it is. The mirror is equipped with Intel RealSense Depth Sensors. It scans your body while the Bluetooth-connected scales also act as a turntable. 

Result: a full 3D scan of your body in 20 seconds, delivered to an app, that lets you track your…

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Myanmar

Digital Revolution and Repression in Myanmar and Thailand

Activists have also proactively published social media content in multiple languages using the hashtags #WhatsHappeningInMyanmar and #WhatsHappeningInThailand to boost coverage of events on the ground.

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By Karen Lee

Following the February 1 coup, Myanmar’s netizens became the latest to join the #MilkTeaAlliance, an online collective of pro-democracy youth across Asia.

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Ecommerce

How will oil prices shape the Covid-19 recovery in emerging markets?

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How will oil prices shape the Covid-19 recovery in emerging markets?

– After falling significantly in 2020, oil prices have returned to pre-pandemic levels
– The rise has been driven by OPEC+ production cuts and an improving economic climate
– Higher prices are likely to support a rebound in oil-producing emerging markets
– Further virus outbreaks or increased production would pose challenges to price stability

A combination of continued production cuts and an increase in economic activity has prompted oil prices to return to pre-pandemic levels – a factor that will be crucial to the recovery of major oil-producing countries in the Middle East and Africa.

Brent crude prices rose above $60 a barrel in early February, the first time they had exceeded pre-Covid-19 values. They have since continued to rise, going above $66 a barrel on February 24.

The ongoing increase in oil prices, which have soared by 75% since November and around 26% since the beginning of the year, marks a dramatic change from last year.

Following the closure of many national borders and the implementation of travel-related restrictions to stop the spread of the virus, demand for oil slumped globally.

In the wake of the Saudi-Russia price war in early 2020, Brent crude prices fell from around $60 a barrel in February that year to two-decade lows of $20 a barrel in late April, as supply increased and demand plummeted. The value of WTI crude – the main benchmark for oil in the US – fell to record lows of around $40 a barrel last year on the back of a lack of storage space.

While global demand for oil remains low, one factor credited with reversing the trend is the decision to make significant cuts to oil production, which subsequently tightened global supplies.

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