Internet Use/New Technologies

07 January 2020

Bitcoin's threat to the global financial system is probably at an end The Conversation

2020 could well be the year that the cryptocurrency dream dies. This is not to say that cryptocurrencies will die altogether – far from it. But to all the financial romantics who have cheered the rise of bitcoin and other digital currencies over the past decade, there is a reckoning coming. Like it or not, the vision of a world in which these currencies liberate money from the clutches of central banks and other corporate giants is fading rapidly.

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19 December 2019

Twitter and Facebook Want to Shift Power to Users. Or Do They? New York Times

A decentralized internet was hailed as a way to dethrone Twitter and Facebook. But to the tech giants, the idea could unload some of their burdens.

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14 December 2019

Should surfing the web count as a human right? The view from South Africa. Christian Science Monitor

Should internet access be seen as a human right? To answer that question, activist Onica Makwakwa likes to begin with a story.

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09 December 2019

Fake 'Likes' Remain Just a Few Dollars Away, Researchers Say New York Times

Despite Big Tech’s attempts to combat manipulation, companies that sell clicks, likes and followers on social media are easy to find.

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27 November 2019

Pointless emails: they're not just irritating - they have a massive carbon footprint The Guardian

More than 64m unnecessary emails are sent in Britain every day. Along with clogging up our inboxes they are also damaging the environment

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24 November 2019

Opinion: Blocking the Disabled on the Web Means Blocking Innovation Wired

Without the inspiration and innovation of two disabled individuals, the digital world likely wouldn’t be what it is today. Yet that same world so summarily excludes disabled individuals today that we’re eliminating the very people we will need to solve the web’s future problems.

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22 November 2019

White nationalists are openly operating on Facebook. The company won't act The Guardian

Guardian analysis finds VDare and Red Ice TV among several outlets that are still on the platform despite Facebook’s promised ban

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21 November 2019

When Things Go Wrong for Blind Users on Facebook, They Go Really Wrong Slate

Last December, Tasha Chemel agreed to participate in a Facebook study. A professional academic coach at a college, Chemel had been blogging about Facebook’s problems with accessibility for blind people like her and complained directly to the company. She was used to not hearing back. But this time a Facebook envoy had humbly reached out, admitting “that Facebook is not as accessible as it should be, and the frustration with accessibility gaps you and others share with us is understandable.”

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20 November 2019

The Richard Dimbleby Lecture: Sir Tim Berners-Lee: The World Wide Web - A Mid-Course Correction BBC

Jonathan Dimbleby introduces this year's lecture from London's Design Museum, with engineer and computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee talking about his aspirations for the future of the world wide web, which he invented in 1989.

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17 November 2019

Firefox's fight for the future of the web The Observer

Why do you choose the browser you use? Maybe you think it loads pages more quickly. Maybe it’s made by the same firm as your device and you think it’s more compatible in some way. You prefer the graphics, perhaps, or it just happened to be pre-installed on your machine. Maybe you’re not even aware that there’s a choice.

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16 November 2019

We're Stuck With the Tech Giants. But They're Stuck With Each Other. New York Times

Any suggestion that Big Tech has had a rough time must contend with this fact: Amazon, Facebook and Alphabet, Google’s parent company, spent the past decade growing much faster than the rest of the economy.

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China's Internet Is Flowering. And It Might Be Our Future. New York Times

The HeyTea shop in the Chaoyang district of Beijing is an expression of svelte minimalism, its LED lettering and black tiles giving off a vaguely retro vibe. On a recent weekend, one of the last truly warm days of early fall, the location was full of upmarket customers — families with strollers, Gen Z-ers in knockoff Supreme streetwear — enjoying the popular cheese tea. On the front facade, right by the door, an illustration of a hand holding a phone displayed a two-dimensional bar code, or QR code. “Scan the code to avoid lines,” a sign read.

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Online Cesspool Got You Down? You Can Clean It Up, for a Price New York Times

A decade ago, an internet video start-up called Hulu boldly declared an end to the era of paid TV. The company announced that users would be able to watch their favorite shows over the internet, “anytime, anywhere, for free.”

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14 November 2019

Facebook says it removed 3.2B fake accounts in 6 months Associated Press

Facebook says it removed 3.2 billion fake accounts from its service from April to September, up slightly from 3 billion in the previous six months.

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13 November 2019

Far right 'use Russian-style propaganda to spread misinformation' The Guardian

Misinformation techniques first deployed by Russian agents are now more commonly used in Britain by the far right, as well as by politicians to convince their own voters, an audience in Oxford has been told.

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12 November 2019

A.I. Systems Echo Biases They're Fed, Putting Scientists on Guard New York Times

Researchers say computer systems are learning from lots and lots of digitized books and news articles that could bake old attitudes into new technology.

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03 November 2019

Vint Cerf's top moments from 50 years of the Internet Google blog

Before there was the Internet, there was a packet. The “sending of the packet” was actually the first step toward the invention of the Internet as we know it, and it happened 50 years ago today. On that day, we established the first connection between two computers—from UCLA to the Stanford Research Institute—on the ARPANET, the predecessor to the Internet.

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01 November 2019

Internet50 - Looking Toward the Future UCLA Samueli

A packed Royce Hall on the UCLA campus Tuesday saw dozens of tech pioneers, business leaders and activists share the stage to examine the history and current state of the internet, and offer ideas on how it can improve.

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30 October 2019

Australia Proposes Face Scans for Watching Online Pornography New York Times

The Australian government has proposed using a facial recognition system it is developing to verify that people who seek to watch pornography online are of legal age.

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Internet 'father' Vint Cerf on future challenges ahead for the web BBC News

As the Internet marks 50 years, its co-founder Vint Cerf, tells BBC Click of his concerns for the future and challenges ahead for the web.

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Experts Optimistic About the Next 50 Years of Digital Life Pew Internet

Fifty years after the first computer network was connected, most experts say digital life will mostly change humans’ existence for the better over the next 50 years. However, they warn this will happen only if people embrace reforms allowing better cooperation, security, basic rights and economic fairness

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24 October 2019

Google claims 'quantum supremacy' for computer BBC News

Google says an advanced computer has achieved "quantum supremacy" for the first time, surpassing the performance of conventional devices.

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22 October 2019

Creators of internet talk censorship, misinformation online GW Hatchet

Some of the internet’s original architects spoke about tackling disinformation online at the Jack Morton Auditorium Thursday.

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16 October 2019

And 'Lo!' - How the internet was born BBC News

In the 1960s, Bob Taylor worked at the heart of the Pentagon in Washington DC. He was on the third floor, near the US defence secretary and the boss of the Advanced Research Projects Agency (Arpa).

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08 October 2019

America's Risky Approach to Artificial Intelligence by Tim Wu New York Times

The brilliant 2014 science fiction novel “The Three-Body Problem,” by the Chinese writer Liu Cixin, depicts the fate of civilizations as almost entirely dependent on winning grand races to scientific milestones. Someone in China’s leadership must have read that book, for Beijing has made winning the race to artificial intelligence a national obsession, devoting billions of dollars to the cause and setting 2030 as the target year for world dominance. Not to be outdone, President Vladimir Putin of Russia recently declared that whoever masters A.I. “will become the ruler of the world.”

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