Good tech news for April 9: Razer lends a hand, Maingear makes ventilators, and more

Razer Blade
Razer Blade (Image credit: Windows Central)

It's time for another round of good tech news. With the world in dire straits right now, everything can be a little overwhelming. But there's also a lot of good being done, so here's a look.

Today, we have Razer and Maingear stepping up to the plate to help with the pandemic, Microsoft giving a boost to its employees, and an adorable golden retriever.

Razer lends its partners a $50 million hand

Razer Manowar headset

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

A lot of businesses are having a tough time through the COVID-19 pandemic, and Razer announced today that it's lending a hand to some. The company committed $50 million to assist its partners, both old and new, in weathering the current downturn brought on by the pandemic.

"There are many growing implications with COVID-19 on the global economy and it is affecting everyone from all walks of life," Razer co-Founder and CEO Min-Liang Tan said in a press release today. "We see the best way for us to do our part is to support our business partners starting with our ecosystem."

As part of the plan, Razer says it will divvy up the $50 million throughout 2020 with its Razer Gold, Razer Fintech, and zVentures arms. The money will largely go to supporting cashflow, marketing, and investments for Razer's partners.

Maingear steps up with much-needed ventilators

This week, custom PC builder Maingear announced the Maingear LIV, a ventilator that it quickly prototyped and is gearing up to build and ship to communities in need. Maingear says it consulted with doctors to get the prototype built in around two weeks, and it's using 3D-printed parts to scale up production.

The LIV can be controlled by a tablet, but it's operational without the tablet as well. Inside, Maingear has included redundant power supplies and multiple alarms if something goes wrong with its operation. Maingear is hoping to get quick approval from the FDA to get its LIV units to where they're needed.

"The MAINGEAR LIV combines redundant power circuits, multiple safety features, and a unique coupling device that contains and drains exhaled aerosolized virus from the patient while allowing routine maintenance under severe conditions," Maingear said in a press release. "Each unit has preset standard values for use by untrained personnel, as well as dedicated software that is controlled via touch screen interface, giving access to fine adjustments in addition to the manual regulation controls on the device."

Microsoft gives families a break with generous family leave

Microsoft logo

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

Microsoft this week set up a "Paid Pandemic Chool and Childcare Closure Leave" (PSCCL) program for its employees. The goal? To help families juggle working full-time and teaching their children while schools are closed.

The program lets parents take a total of 12 weeks of paid leave, either continuously or intermittently. The policy follows on from the updated Family and Medical Leave Act rules, but it is mare generous. It also builds on larger efforts Microsoft has taken on in recent weeks, described by CEO Satya Nadella, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Pet of the day

As always, here's another fluffer to brighten your day a bit. This girl is named Maggie May, and she's happy as a clam.

Maggie May

Source: Dan Thorp-Lancaster (Image credit: Source: Dan Thorp-Lancaster)
Dan Thorp-Lancaster

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the former Editor-in-Chief of Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central, Android Central, and iMore as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl