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9 great reads from CNET this week

How the quantum computing race will change our lives, why it's hard to find election info you can trust, and is the digital divide really narrowing?

For the most up-to-date news and information about the coronavirus pandemic, visit the WHO and CDC websites.

Alongside predictions that the coronavirus pandemic could trigger the sharpest recession in the US since the Great Depression -- with consumer spending plummeting and unemployment at record highs -- it turns out big tech is doing ok. That was evident this week as companies reported mostly positive quarterly earnings.

Apple, for example, reported sales and profit growth, even as the pandemic weighs on iPhone demand. And Amazon sales surged even as CEO Jeff Bezos said coronavirus costs could hit $4 billion. Google also beat sales expectations and Facebook and Twitter both saw strong user growth amid the pandemic.

Meanwhile, Apple and Google are making progress on the coronavirus tracking tool they plan to release in mid-May. Also, the FDA on Friday made an emergency authorization for health care workers to use a promising drug called remdesivir to treat COVID-19.

Here are the week's stories you don't want to miss:

Amazon, IBM and Microsoft race to bring global access to quantum computing

Quantum computing could help companies without billion-dollar budgets design superbatteries, create complex chemicals and understand the universe.

IBM's 50 qubit quantum computer
James Martin/CNET

Ahead of election 2020: Tips on finding information you can trust

Deciding whether to trust memes and news stories is hard work.

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Brett Pearce/CNET

How you talk about coronavirus actually impacts its spread

Tracking the spread of infectious diseases like COVID-19 is more complex than following numbers. Memes and social media chatter matter too.

pathogen
Image Point FR - LPN/BSIP/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

On its 15th birthday, the Airbus A380 is facing retirement

Never a hit with airlines and now grounded by the coronavirus pandemic, the still-young giant will disappear from the Airbus factory next year.

air-france-a380
Kent German/CNET

iPad creativity tips from best-selling children's author Oliver Jeffers

The author and illustrator reminds me of patience and working within limits.

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Apple

Dems on FCC take issue with claims the digital divide is narrowing

FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel says the agency's report concluding that broadband is being delivered in a "reasonable and timely way" is wrong.

rosenworcel-gettyimages-1192126959
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Nvidia's chief scientist designs a cheap ventilator to help fight COVID-19

The ventilator uses parts that cost about $400 and can even be 3D-printed.

nvidia-ventilator.png
Nvidia

As jails and prisons face coronavirus, a new app tries to bridge the mail gap

Ameelio Letters offers a free letter service to families of people who are incarcerated.

gettyimages-172776189
Getty/AZemdega

Apple Watch saved my life: 5 people share their stories

With its fall detection feature, heart rate notifications, exercise tracking and even the ability to make a call from your wrist, the Apple Watch has made a mark in each one of these stories.

applewatchsavedmylif
CNET