US military identifies virtual nations as a potential security threat to US sovereignty

US military identifies virtual nations as a potential security threat to US sovereignty

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF The internet means citizens can now become part of large, virtual collectives, or nations, and there are fears these nations, with their own rules, welfare and support systems, could threaten the power and influence of sovereign nations.   When is a nation not a nation?...

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Ohio becomes first US state to let people pay business taxes in Bitcoin

Ohio becomes first US state to let people pay business taxes in Bitcoin

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Many investors have said Bitcoin will take off when you can pay your taxes with it, well that time might be getting closer.   There’s a lot of legal uncertainty in the US surrounding cryptocurrencies, and many other investors, like Kevin O’Leary ABC show Shark Tank fame,...

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Decentralised hedge funds take aim at Wall Street elite

Decentralised hedge funds take aim at Wall Street elite

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Services and industries are increasingly becoming decentralised, and the financial services industry is no exception.   A little while ago I discussed how one hedge fund, Aidyia, is now fully autonomous, a decentralised autonomous organisation run by an AI without humans, and how another, Numerai,...

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Bangkok residents cut out the energy companies and trade energy over the blockchain

Bangkok residents cut out the energy companies and trade energy over the blockchain

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF As the number of small renewable energy installations around the world grow individual communities are increasingly cutting out the energy companies and trading energy directly with one another.   Residents in a Bangkok neighbourhood in Thailand are trying out a new blockchain based peer to...

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Singapore, the world leader in education, bans all student rankings

Singapore, the world leader in education, bans all student rankings

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Education that prepares children for the changes in the decades to come is vital, and Singapore have one of the most ambitious education visions of any country.   By whatever yard stick you care to measure it by Singapore has one of the highest achieving...

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Apple’s eSIM plans would be a death blow to the carriers

Apple’s eSIM plans would be a death blow to the carriers

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Carriers all around the world rely on physical SIMs to keep their customers locked into contracts and make it difficult to change, apple wants to change that.   Each new iPhone is usually good news for mobile network operators. The latest Apple device always comes with...

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The web is broken so it’s founder is re-inventing it

The web is broken so it’s founder is re-inventing it

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF The internet was supposed to empower people, but so far most of that power is being concentrated in big centralised platform companies instead.   The founder of the World Wide Web thinks it’s broken and has a plan to fix it. Tim Berners-Lee, the British...

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IBM breakthrough uses AI to make blockchain more energy efficient

IBM breakthrough uses AI to make blockchain more energy efficient

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Mining blockchain uses up an extraordinary amount of electricity, equivalent to an entire country, so companies are trying to fix the issue.   Proof of Work (PoW), the common consensus mechanism that secures Bitcoin and numerous other cryptocurrency blockchains, has given the technology a reputation for...

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The internet is splintering in two, one led by the US the other led by China

The internet is splintering in two, one led by the US the other led by China

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF As individual nation states look to assert their dominance on the global stage we are witnessing the early stages of a splintered internet with multiple standards.   The internet is disappearing, being replaced instead by a fabric of connected devices, like wearables and sensor systems,...

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Estonia becomes the world’s first virtual nation capable of rebooting itself

Estonia becomes the world’s first virtual nation capable of rebooting itself

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Technology is showing us how ancient the concept of the traditional nation state is, and as virtual nations take shape being able to reboot them in times of war is crucial.   How do you reboot an entire country? It’s an odd question, but in...

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Blockchain startups are lining up to decentralise and revolutionise the internet

Blockchain startups are lining up to decentralise and revolutionise the internet

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF We think the internet is already decentralised, but the internet as we know it is evolving, and tomorrow’s internet will be truly decentralised.   An increasing number of people want to fix the flaws of the internet by decentralizing it, including Sir Tim Berners-Lee, the father...

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Microsoft gets rid of blockchain miners with new Ethereum blockchain service

Microsoft gets rid of blockchain miners with new Ethereum blockchain service

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Mining blockchain has become a contentious issue because of the amount of energy it uses and its speed, Microsoft are trying to solve both problems.   Hot on the heels of its interest in Iota, a blockchain-like peer to peer cryptocurrency that does away with...

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After the goldrush comes the crash, over 800 cryptocurrencies are now dead

After the goldrush comes the crash, over 800 cryptocurrencies are now dead

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Every market has its successes and failures and just like any investment ICO’s can gain and loose value too, making due diligence as important as ever.   Anyone who reads any sort of business newspaper will know that cryptocurrency projects have been popping up left,...

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IBM joins Sovrin Foundation to give individuals back control of their data

IBM joins Sovrin Foundation to give individuals back control of their data

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Today there is no way you can control who uses or shares your information, despite regulations like GDPR, but Self-Soverign ID systems like this one gives users the power to control their own online information.   It looks almost inevitable that Facebook will be punished,...

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Hackers use 51 percent attack to commandeer three cryptocurrencies, steal millions

Hackers use 51 percent attack to commandeer three cryptocurrencies, steal millions

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF 51 percent attacks are rare, but as criminals continue to gain access to more computing power smaller cryptocurrency networks are in increasing danger of being comandeered.   This week not one but three cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin Gold, Verge Coin, and Monacoin, were hit with a rarely seen cyber...

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Air France KLM and Microsoft use blockchain to improve MRO

Air France KLM and Microsoft use blockchain to improve MRO

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Blockchain has enormous potential to improve the efficiency of supply chains and especially MRO, and this is one of the world’s first proof of concepts.   Air France KLM’s engineering and maintenance division is evaluating the potential for Blockchain to become its new digital ledger...

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The world’s first Quantum blockchain is a “quantum time machine”

The world’s first Quantum blockchain is a “quantum time machine”

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF The introduction of Quantum computers threaten to undermine the encryption that supports all of today’s blockchain technologies so researchers are trying to develop blockchains that are immune from future attacks.   A newly proposed Quantum Blockchain, which at first glance loosely resembles the Quantum Safe...

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Basis creates a stable crypto currency, raises $133m from A-list investors

Basis creates a stable crypto currency, raises $133m from A-list investors

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF The value of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies swing wildly by the day making them almost useless as a medium of exchange, Basis has designed a stable cryptocurrency and if it works it “could replace money”.   On its debut nearly a decade ago, one of...

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UPS bets on blockchain to transform the $1 Trillion shipping industry

UPS bets on blockchain to transform the $1 Trillion shipping industry

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Today’s global supply chains are plagued by a multitude of challenges, both bureaucratic and logistical, blockchain technology used correctly reduces the friction and eliminates many of them.   The world is run by trade. Freight and logistics in the US alone account for nearly $1.5...

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IBM wants to combine AI and blockchain to transform healthcare

IBM wants to combine AI and blockchain to transform healthcare

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF AI and blockchain are two incredibly powerful technologies, but for different reasons, however, when they’re combined their significance, and impact, becomes even greater.   The combination of Blockchain and Artificial Intelligence (AI) “could bring significant improvements to a healthcare sector plagued by interoperability problems and...

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