China’s new climate control program is a monster

China’s new climate control program is a monster

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF A large part of China is arid, with serious implications on the people’s livelihoods and health, the new climate control program will improve their living conditions.   China, the world’s second largest economy, announced on Wednesday that it’s going to spend $168 million on a...

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Blockchain and Universal Basic Income join forces to lift 22,000 children out of poverty

Blockchain and Universal Basic Income join forces to lift 22,000 children out of poverty

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Despite recent developments, if poverty was a disease governments would classify it as a pandemic, now though the unlikely union of emerging technology and the charity sector could one day drive poverty to zero.   As the popularity of blockchain grows so too do the...

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Two world firsts as researchers hack an unhackable quantum network

Two world firsts as researchers hack an unhackable quantum network

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF A team of Canadian researchers have achieved a world first and hacked a quantum network, then they accomplished another world first and discovered how to identify hacks.   As we saw during the recent 2016 US election, protecting traditional computer systems and electoral systems, which...

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Australia hails the end of passports as it rolls out biometrics at airports

Australia hails the end of passports as it rolls out biometrics at airports

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Biometric border technologies can scan and authenticate you without you ever knowing, or needing to stop, now Australia are going to use them to replace passports, for good.   Australia, for those that have never been, is a beautiful country – and the last thing...

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US Designates Election Infrastructure as ‘Critical’

US Designates Election Infrastructure as ‘Critical’

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF With only 55% of the world’s population now living in democracies it’s important that voters, governments, and other nations can trust the integrity of a country’s voting systems, but while this move gives US election systems more protection participation is voluntary so we could still...

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New H2 smartphone puts a lab grade molecular sensor in your hands

New H2 smartphone puts a lab grade molecular sensor in your hands

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Being able to analyse the chemical composition of products, particularly counterfeit ones, has long been something you could only do in a lab, now the lab’s in the palm of your hand.   Smartphones already do a lot of things, in fact, it’s likely that...

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Finland rolls out its universal basic income scheme to 2,000 citizens

Finland rolls out its universal basic income scheme to 2,000 citizens

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF As technology replaces and automates more jobs governments are experimenting with universal basic incomes as a means to keep people out of poverty, now Finland has taken the plunge.   It’s January 2017, and as promised, Finlands government is now rolling out it’s ambitious Universal Basic...

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As machines replace jobs new White House report prioritises education

As machines replace jobs new White House report prioritises education

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF As analysts predict that more jobs will be replaced by automation and machines a new White House report plays down Universal Basic Incomes and prioritises investment and education.   A new 55 page White House report that investigates the impact of artificial intelligence (AI) and automation...

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Elon Musk believes universal basic income is inevitable

Elon Musk believes universal basic income is inevitable

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Many people believe that a rising tide of automation and intelligent machines will put much of today’s workforce onto the streets leaving governments with no option but to roll out some form of universal basic income, and it appears that Elon Musk thinks the same....

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Canadian province votes to trial Universal Basic Income

Canadian province votes to trial Universal Basic Income

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF As technology automates more jobs governments around the world are trialling UBI as a means to potentially mitigate social unrest and increasingly inequality   In the face of growing automation which many governments and analysts believe will lead to a rapid rise in global unemployment...

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The ultimate bioweapon, scientists have developed an Extinction Gene

The ultimate bioweapon, scientists have developed an Extinction Gene

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Scientists now have the knowledge and the tools they need to create, and deliver, Doomsday genes which can selectively target and exterminate entire species.   Here’s a question that occurs only to madmen and geneticists… How do you get a gene that kills a species...

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Technology and the future of privacy

Technology and the future of privacy

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF In Millenia past privacy was considered to be a normal part of life but now it is increasingly becoming a privilege and a scarcity, and, if it is not guarded, or looked after wisely, one day it won’t exist at all.   I originally wrote...

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China rolls out its Social Credit Score complete with Orwellian overtones

China rolls out its Social Credit Score complete with Orwellian overtones

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF The technologies to create an Orwellian state surveillance and ratings system already exists, but without the will and resources to pull one together they remained relegated to the pages of fiction, until now.   Swiping her son’s half fare student card through the turnstile one...

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Sweden wants to become the worlds first cashless society

Sweden wants to become the worlds first cashless society

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF With the use of cash diminishing around the world Governments are beginning to prepare themselves for a cashless future.   The use of cash in Sweden has dived by 40% since 2009 when the central bank decided to rescind the country’s highest denomination banknote and now, faced...

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MIT’s new AI can create videos of the future by looking at a photo

MIT’s new AI can create videos of the future by looking at a photo

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF The human brain is good at looking at a scene and figuring out what happens next, now an AI can look at a photo and create a video of the future from it and that opens up some interesting applications.   Love the Exponential Future?...

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Drone ray gun gets FAA approval to take out drones at airports

Drone ray gun gets FAA approval to take out drones at airports

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Drones are increasingly being used by criminals and terrorists to disrupt and destroy high value targets so security services around the world are now in an arms race to make sure they stay one step ahead of the threat.   A UK created “ray gun”...

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The era of pre-crime? Chinese AI can tell you’re a criminal by looking at your photo

The era of pre-crime? Chinese AI can tell you’re a criminal by looking at your photo

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF The greatest danger we face is underestimating the power of todays, let alone tomorrows, technology. As we enter an era of persistent online and offline surveillance it is becoming easier to see how one day police forces around the world could create a Minority Report...

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New Deloitte study says 861,000 UK public sector jobs can be automated

New Deloitte study says 861,000 UK public sector jobs can be automated

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Technologies including AI, bots, drones and robots will lead to the automation of large parts of the global workforce   More than 861,000 public sector jobs could be lost by 2030 through automation, according to a study that comes as a further blow after hundreds...

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Scottish council to vote on implementing a Universal Basic Income scheme

Scottish council to vote on implementing a Universal Basic Income scheme

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF As the threat to jobs from AI, automation, drones and robotics increase governments are experimenting with new welfare schemes aimed at helping stave off future hardship, poverty and social unrest   Scotland could become one of the first places in the world to try a...

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Virtual reality plays its role in convicting Nazi SS guards who killed millions

Virtual reality plays its role in convicting Nazi SS guards who killed millions

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Criminal convictions, particularly involving historic crimes, are often made or broken on just how well jurors can visualise the scenes of the crimes using second hand evidence, now VR can give them a first person view.   Earlier this month I reported that UK and...

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