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Jun 2, 2017

No more planes? Hyperloop test facility unveiled in Netherlands

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, transportation

A Hyperloop test facility has been unveiled in the Netherlands, bringing Elon Musk’s vision of transporting pods of people through a tube at incredibly high speeds one step closer to fruition.

The test facility, a 30-meter-long (100ft), 3.2-meter-diameter (10.5ft) steel tube, is located at Delft Technical University.

“In this facility we will test all systems that don’t require high speeds,” said Tim Houter, CEO of Hardt Global Mobility, which is working on the project with construction company BAM, as quoted by Reuters.

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Jun 2, 2017

This start-up is offering $8,000 blood transfusions from teens to people who want to fight aging

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, life extension

Blood transfusions from teen-agers might sound like science fiction, but it’s happening.

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Jun 2, 2017

Wallet Security: Cloud/Exchange Services

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, finance, hacking

3½ years ago, I wrote a Bitcoin wallet safety primer for Naked Security, a newsletter by Sophos, the European antivirus lab. Articles are limited to just 500 hundred words, and so my primer barely conveyed a mindset—It outlined broad steps for protecting a Bitcoin wallet.

In retrospect, that article may have been a disservice to digital currency novices. For example, did you know that a mobile text message is not a good form of two-factor authentication? Relying on SMS can get your life savings wiped out. Who knew?!

With a tip of the hat to Cody Brown, here is an online wallet security narrative that beats my article by a mile. Actually, it is more of a warning than a tutorial. But, read it closely. Learn from Cody’s misfortune. Practice safe storage. If you glean anything from the article, at least do this:

  • Install Google Authenticator. Require it for any online account with stored value. If someone hijacks your phone account, they cannot authenticate an exchange or wallet transaction—even with Authenticator.
  • Many exchanges (like Coinbase) offer a “vault”. Sweep most of your savings into the vault instead of the daily-use wallet. This gives you time to detect a scam or intrusion and to halt withdrawals. What is a vault? In my opinion, it is better than a paper wallet! Like a bank account, it is a wallet administered by a trusted vendor, but with no internet connection and forced access delay.

Exchange and cloud users want instant response. They want to purchase things without delay and they want quick settlement of currency exchange. But online wallets come with great risk. They can be emptied in an instant. It is not as difficult to spoof your identity as you may think (Again: Read Cody’s article below!)

Continue reading “Wallet Security: Cloud/Exchange Services” »

Jun 2, 2017

A Net Neutrality Nightmare? / Part II (Future A to Z)

Posted by in categories: futurism, information science, internet, journalism, law, media & arts, software, strategy, supercomputing

The recent efforts to remove Net Neutrality have given many a sense of impending doom we are soon to face. What happens to an Internet without Net Neutrality? Advocates have a vision of the possible results — and it is quite the nightmare! In this segment of Future A to Z, The Galactic Public Archives takes a cheeky, yet compelling perspective on the issue.

Part 1 / Part 2

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Jun 2, 2017

Bionic Carbon Fiber Arm From Lamborghini? It Could Happen

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, transhumanism

Automobili Lamborghini’s expertise in carbon fiber may lead to implants and prosthetics. Oddly, a Ferrari is involved as well.

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Jun 2, 2017

Your entire wallet in one smartcard

Posted by in category: finance

This touch-screen card is going to replace your entire wallet.

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Jun 2, 2017

Zuckerberg’s Universal Basic Income Speech

Posted by in category: economics

Mark Zuckerberg makes a passionate call for Universal Basic Income.

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Jun 2, 2017

Resurrected: A Controversial Trial to Bring the Dead Back to Life

Posted by in category: neuroscience

Scientists remain skeptical about an experimental approach to reverse brain death.

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Jun 2, 2017

Tomorrow’s Robots Will Train in Simulators, Just Like Today’s Troops

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, physics, robotics/AI, transportation

Several firms are working on training environments like Star Trek’s Holodeck, but for machines.

When future robots enter the world, they won’t have a learning curve.

Artificial intelligence researchers are creating tools to help teach the robots that will assemble our gadgets in factories, or do chores around our home, before they ever step (or roll) into the real world. These simulators, most recently announced by Nvidia as a project called Isaac’s Lab but also pioneered by Alphabet’s DeepMind and Elon Musk’s OpenAI, are 3D spaces that have physics just like reality, with virtual objects that act the same way as their physical counterparts.

Continue reading “Tomorrow’s Robots Will Train in Simulators, Just Like Today’s Troops” »

Jun 2, 2017

Robot cops patrol the streets of Dubai

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Police in Dubai have unveiled a working police robot — what the kids call a “Robocop.” Using a computer tablet that is based in the robot’s chest, Dubai residents can report crimes, pay speeding tickets, and submit paperwork in six different languages. The Emirati robot has a built-in camera which allows it to read facial expressions and identify suspects, and it live streams audio and video back to its human coworkers at an operation center.

Dubai has already implemented other modern safety services, including firefighters that use jetpacks. City police aim to have robots make up a quarter of their workforce by the year 2030.

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