No. 515: In which COVID takes off, Telstar blasts off and Applied DNA spins off

Alpine trace: Swiss geologist Maurice Lugeon -- the first to map out the entire stretch of the Alps, Europe's tallest and most extensive mountain range -- was born 150 years ago today.


The sweeter the reward: You’ve done it again, intrepid reader, and coming off a long holiday weekend to boot – another workweek conquered, another weekend earned, Phase Four and all.

Awww: We shall name them Colada and Blueberry.

Yes, it’s Friday out there, July 10 to be exact, a day so sweet you may need to floss twice: It’s National Kitten Day, National Pick Blueberries Day and National Piña Colada Day, all at once.

Lose some: It’s also Independence Day in the Bahamas, marking the nation’s 1973 separation from the UK.

Win some: And Statehood Day in Wyoming, which became the 44th U.S. State on July 10, 1890.

Lockheed, loaded: Hughes’ modified Lockheed Model 14-N2 Super Electra powers up for its historic flight.

Wheels up: Renowned aviator Howard Hughes (and a crew of four) took off from Brooklyn’s Floyd Bennett Field on this date in 1939, kicking off a 91-hour, record-setting flight around the Northern Hemisphere.

Making his mark: Notable U.S. patents issued on July 10 include one in 1866 for Massachusetts inventor Edson Clark, who made a point with the indelible pencil.

Also patented on this date, in 1962, by Swedish engineer Nils Bohlin, was history’s first three-point seatbelt.

Telstar us more: On that same day (July 10, 1962), the Telstar 1 – the world’s first geosynchronous communications satellite, which would soon carry the first live transatlantic TV satellite broadcast – was launched into orbit.

African American, European and Everyone Else: And it was this date in 1997 when British scientists reported on a DNA analysis of a Neanderthal skeleton supporting the theory that all human life spread from a single African species between 100,000 and 200,000 years ago.

For Shoreham: The wizard of the North Shore.

Second seat: Existing forever in Thomas Edison’s great shadow, defined more by his failures than his dozens of electrical-power breakthroughs, Serbian-born genius Nikola Tesla (1856-1943) – who did some of his most inspired work right here on Long Island – would be 164 years old today.

Also born on July 10 were American religious leader Emma Smith Bidamon (1804-1879), the first wife of Mormonism founder Joseph Smith and a big player in the early days of the Latter-day Saints movement; German brewer Adolphus Busch (1839-1913); Swiss geologist Maurice Lugeon (1870-1953), who completed the first comprehensive geological interpretation of the European Alps; American physicist Owen Chamberlain (1920-2006), who shared a 1959 Nobel Prize (with Italian-American Emilio Segrè) for discovering antiprotons; and local Michigan businessman Edward Lowe (1920-1995), who accidentally invented kitty litter.

Keep it short: And take a bow, Alice Ann Munro – the Canadian writer, who won the 2013 Nobel Prize in Literature and is credited with revolutionizing the art of the short story, turns 89 today.

Give the Canadian storyteller and all the other July 10 innovators your best at Give us the calendar items and interesting news stories – long or short, we’re not picky.


About our sponsor: The Long Island Business Development Council has helped build the regional economy for 50 years by bringing together government economic-development officials, developers, financial experts and others for education, debate and networking.



Mind the gap: Young adults who take a year off from their higher education to see the world and personally expand their educational scope – recent high school grads and current collegians included – have hit a wall, of sorts, in the form of the global pandemic.

Enter Adelphi University, which has unveiled the pandemic-approved Gap Year Experience, a pair of 11-week programs (one slated for Fall 2020, one for Spring 2021) that combine three weeks of training in a particular field and eight weeks of working on a small-team project for an established business or organization, all run remotely – a muscular internship, of sorts, designed to keep once-and-future students on smart educational and career paths.

Participants will sharpen their professional skills by attending online lectures and virtual company meetings before working directly on marketing and business-strategy projects at a wide selection of domestic and international partners, including some Fortune 500 companies. That’s the real prize of the Gap Year Experience, according to Adelphi University Center for Innovation Director Graziela Fusaro, who noted, “[The program] is designed for students to learn problem-solving skills through a project-based approach.”

Enough to make you sick: How the virus got out.

COVID begins: A new study out of the Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research tracks the earliest days of New York’s COVID-19 crisis – a backstory, of sorts, that traces the initial spread of the virus around Greater New York and could provide key insights into future outbreaks.

The study – published this week in Clinical Infectious Diseases, the journal of the Infectious Diseases Society of America – analyzed 46,793 patients who were tested for the virus by Northwell Health between March 8 and April 10. Researchers paid special attention to several key metrics, including demographics (African Americans had generally higher positivity rates), geography (Queens County had the highest positivity rate, at 68.5 percent) and hospitalization rates.

Among the key findings: More than half of the 46,793 tested persons were positive for COVID-19, with 8,174 (about 30 percent) ultimately hospitalized; Black males (72.1 percent) and Asian males (71.6 percent) suffered the highest positivity rates; and Suffolk County boasted one of the lowest positivity rates (51.2 percent) in the study area. Learn more here.



Clinical breakthrough: Applied DNA Sciences will speed things up – and deepen its market penetration – with in-house laboratory testing.

Fresh spin: With AI-influenced precision, Stony Brook University supercomputers will help site the wind farms of the future.

Innovation in the Age of Coronavirus: Nassau’s numbing numbers, Molloy’s master machinations and much more – Long Island’s one-and-only pandemic primer has roared passed 100 stories, and counting.



As Phase Four spreads, Cuomo blasts the president; as workplaces reopen, Janam keeps its distance.



Innovate LI’s inbox overrunneth with inspirational innovations from all North American corners. This week’s brightest out-of-towners:

From California: San Francisco-based cannabidiol crusader Circle Labs offers free consultations with CBD clinicians.

From Pennsylvania: Philadelphia-based cloud-hosting expert eApps flips the switch on its “best in breed,” business-focused Private Virtual Cloud.

From Colorado: Lone Tree-based hearing-solutions specialist Cochlear Limited earns FDA approval for its smartphone-connected implant.



Miya Jones

+ Miya Jones, founder and editor-in-chief of Shades of Long Island, has joined the Long Island Software and Technology Network Board of Directors.

+ Irene Macyk has been appointed chief nursing officer at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset. She previously served as associate executive director and chief nursing officer at Lenox Hill Hospital, Manhattan Eye, Ear and Throat, and Lenox Health Greenwich Village.

+ John Costanzo has been hired as executive director of the New York Chapter of the MAPLE Business Council in Manhattan. He previously served as president of Purolator International in Jericho.

+ Ivar Strand has been hired as manager for research partnerships at Upton-based Brookhaven National Laboratory. He previously served as executive director of sponsored projects for Long Island University at its Brookville and Brooklyn campuses.

+ John Bishar Jr. has been appointed to the Molloy College Board of Trustees. He serves as executive vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary for Uniondale-based Arbor Realty Trust.

+ Melissa Nicosia has been appointed director of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at John T. Mather Memorial Hospital in Port Jefferson. She previously served as director of gynecology at Woodhull Hospital in Brooklyn and an assistant clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at New York University.

+ Hunter Radecki has been hired as a construction inspector at Syosset-based Lockwood, Kessler and Bartlett. He is a recent graduate of Virginia Polytechnic Institute.



Bronze mettle: Quite possibly, more than you needed to know about ancient horse husbandry.

Aerial age: Drones and flying vehicles will elevate your life, very soon.

Ad Age add-on: Ad Age’s new newsletter tracks the transforming workplace.

Bronze Age bias: DNA evidence shows ancient Eurasians really liked male horses.

Through the ages: Five decades later, the Long Island Business Development Council is still finding ways to support, promote and otherwise build up the regional economy. Check them out.