London (CNN Business)The United Kingdom made history last year when it became the first major economy to commit to pumping no more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere than it removes by 2050.Dozens of countries have since followed its lead to achieve “net zero” emissions, and with three decades to go before the deadline, Britain’s progress provides a promising blueprint.Its carbon emissions were 44% below 1990 levels in 2018, with renewable energy now accounting for 33% of its energy mix and coal contributing just over 5%. That is thanks in large part to its success with offshore wind and focus on nuclear energy.
That’s a question I’ve frequently wondered about, and one that Lewis Mumford sought to answer in his 1934 classic Technics & Civilization.
Below are four of the ideological shifts that Mumford believes prepared the way for the modern development of technology:
1) The Invention of the Clock
The invention of the mechanical clock—which appeared in medieval cities in the 13th century—was prepared for by the European monasteries, which desired to create a more ordered and regulated existence apart from the chaos that dwelt outside their walls.
2) A Changed Understanding of Space and Movement
The Middle Ages tended to conceive space as primarily symbolic of the divine. According to Mumford, “a revolutionary change in the conception of space took place” between the 14th and 17th centuries,
3) The Influence of Capitalism
The shift from a barter economy to a capitalist one brought about “constant reference to abstract symbols of wealth: gold, drafts, bills of exchange, eventually merely numbers.
4) A Turn from the Supernatural to the Natural
“Meanwhile, with the transformation of the concepts of time and space went a change in the direction of interest from the heavenly world to the natural one… Nature [now] existed to be explored, to be invaded, to be conquered, and finally, to be understood.”
Low-end smartphones sold to Americans with low-income via a government-subsidized program contain unremovable malware, security firm Malware bytes said today in a report.
The smartphone model is Unimax (UMX) U686CL, a low-end Android-based smartphone made in China and sold by Assurance Wireless, a cell phone service provider part of the Virgin Mobile group.
The telco sells cell phones part of Lifeline, a government program that subsidizes phone service for low-income Americans.
“In late 2019, we saw several complaints in our support system from users with a government-issued phone reporting that some of its pre-installed apps were malicious,” Malwarebytes said in a report published today.
The company said it purchased a UMX U686CL smartphone and analyzed it to confirm the reports it was receiving.
For starters, Malwarebytes said it found that one of the phone’s components, an app named Wireless Update, contained the Adups malware.
The Adups malware was discovered in 2017 by Kryptowire, and it’s a malicious firmware component created by a Chinese company of the same name.
Microsoft has been warning us that this day would come. And now, it’s almost here. Windows 7 end of life lands on January 14, 2020. After that deadline, Windows users running older versions of the desktop operating system will face a difficult choice – cough-up for a hefty bill to upgrade to Windows 10, or brace themselves for some dangerous risks on their home PC.
By ending support for the ageing Windows 7 operating system, which was first launched back in July 2009, Microsoft will stop rolling-out updates with new features, security updates or protections against malware. That means any issues with the software – or any new vulnerabilities discovered by cybercriminals – can be leveraged from indefinitely. Less serious, perhaps – but this also means any annoying bugs or glitches that crop-up will also be immortalised in the operating system.
If you’d like to benefit from the latest security protections and anti-virus solutions from Microsoft, you’ll have to update your machine to an operating system the Redmond-based company does support – namely, Windows 10. Although Microsoft has offered free upgrades to users running official versions of its operating systems in the past, that’s not possible at the moment.
In April 1997, Wired magazine published a feature with the grand and regrettable title “Birth of a Digital Nation.” It was a good time to make sweeping, sunny pronouncements about the future of the United States and technology. The US stood alone astride the globe. Its stock market was booming. Microsoft was about to become the world’s most valuable company, a first for a tech firm. A computer built by IBM was about to beat the world chess champion at his own game.
And yet, the journalist Jon Katz argued, the country was on the verge of something even greater than prosperity and progress — something that would change the course of world history. Led by the Digital Nation, “a new social class” of “young, educated, affluent” urbanites whose “business, social and cultural lives increasingly revolve around” the internet, a revolution was at hand, which would produce unprecedented levels of civic engagement and freedom.sent them berserk.
Though challenged at the edges, this sense lingered. As late as 2012, even as the vast platforms that now control the internet had assumed their current shapes, the bestselling author Steven Johnson argued the glass was half full in his book Future Perfect — that “peer progressives,” enlightened digital natives, would end entrenched social and political problems through crowdsourcing.
Looking back from the shaky edge of a new decade, it’s clear that the past 10 years saw many Americans snap out of this dream, shaken awake by a brutal series of shocks and dislocations from the very changes that were supposed to “create a civilization of the Mind in Cyberspace.” When they opened their eyes, they did indeed see that the Digital Nation had been born. Only it hadn’t set them free. They were being ruled by it. It hadn’t tamed politics. It sent them berserk.
And it hadn’t brought people closer together.
A quadriplegic man has walked again thanks to an artificial intelligence breakthrough. A four-limb robotic exoskeleton controlled by brain signals helped a paralysed man to move his arms and walk using a ceiling-mounted harness for balance. Get the latest headlines: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/
What just happened? On Saturday at the Boca Chica Beach, Texas, Elon Musk showed off the first shiny steel prototype of SpaceX’s deep-space bound ‘Starship’ rocket, just a few moments after the company’s employees had finished assembling it. Musk gave a presentation on “the most powerful rocket in history” and discussed Starship’s stainless steel design as it stood next to the Falcon 1, the company’s first rocket that made it to orbit eleven years ago.
Earlier this month, SpaceX confirmed plans to begin testing its orbital-class ‘Starship’ rocket whose first prototype was completed over the weekend. A 200-ton, 165 ft-tall stainless steel rocket that will use three of SpaceX’s next-gen Raptor engines to test out its flight capabilities through a series of propulsive landing tests.
Microsoft and Google warn that a new bug discovered in Internet Explorer for Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10 can totally take over your PC.
If you haven’t moved beyond Internet Explorer, here’s another reason to do so: Google and Microsoft have discovered a new IE vulnerability that can take over your entire PC.
Microsoft published CVE-2019-1367 on Monday, a scripting engine memory corruption vulnerability that exists within basically every version of Internet Explorer for Windows 7, Windows 8.1, and Windows 10. (Discovery of the bug was credited to Clément Lecigne of Google’s Threat Analysis Group, and reported earlier by The Register.) The vulnerability “corrupt[s] memory in such a way that an attacker could execute arbitrary code in the context of the current user,” according to Microsoft.
The alert goes on explain what this means for users. “An attacker who successfully exploited the vulnerability could gain the same user rights as the current user,” Microsoft says. “If the current user is logged on with administrative user rights, an attacker who successfully exploited the vulnerability could take control of an affected system. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights.”
In other words, if an attacker is able to convince you to click on an affected webpage, that attacker can do whatever they want to your PC and your stored data.
Americans once worked 100 hours a week, six days in a row. Then, in 1940, came the five-day workweek.
Now labor unions are making the case for even less work: dropping days worked down to four.
That’s one of the changes unions are proposing as part of their vision for the future of work, which is outlined in a report to be released Friday by the AFL-CIO, the largest federation of labor unions in the US. (Disclosure: I am a member of the Writers Guild of America East, which is part of the AFL-CIO.) The report, which was shared in advance with Vox, focuses on finding ways to make sure workers can best benefit from automation and other technological changes.
As technology makes workers more productive, unions argue, why not give them three-day weekends? Not 40 hours compressed into four days. Labor unions are proposing a 32-hour workweek, with employees earning no less than they did before.
Computers think they know who you are. Artificial intelligence algorithms can recognize objects from images, even faces. But we rarely get a peek under the hood of facial recognition algorithms. Now, with ImageNet Roulette, we can watch an AI jump to conclusions. Some of its guesses are funny, others…racist.
ImageNet Roulette was designed as part of an art and technology museum exhibit called Training Humans to show us the messy insides of the facial recognition algorithms that we might otherwise assume are straightforward and unbiased. It uses data from one of the large, standard databases used in AI research. Upload a photo, and the algorithm will show you what it thinks you are. My first selfie was labeled “nonsmoker.” Another was just labeled “face.” Our editor-in-chief was labeled a “psycholinguist.”
Source: See How AI Stereotypes You
Spacecraft powered by such engines could conceivably reach Mars in just three to four months — about half the time of the fastest possible trip in a vehicle with traditional chemical propulsion, said Rex Geveden, the president and CEO of BWX Technologies Inc.
According to the NHTSA documents filed earlier this month, 14,215 RAV4 models are subject to the recall but Toyota estimates fewer than 1% of the models have the actual defect. Affected RAV4 and RAV4 Hybrid models were made between May 27, 2019, and July 27, 2019.
The automaker traced the backup camera issue to a damaged electrical connector. During a part check, one of the pins on the audio display unit may have bent in a way that affects the backup camera. When the driver selects the reverse gear, the backup camera may not activate and display on the interior touchscreen as it’s supposed to.
SpaceX won’t be the only company reusing its rockets for payload deliveries. Rocket Lab has unveiled plans to recover the first stage of its Electron vehicle. The strategy’s first phase will have Rocket Lab recovering the stage from the ocean and refurbishing it for later. A second phase will be more… audacious. The company intends to have the stage “captured mid-air” by a helicopter, with the aircraft hooking on to the rocket’s parachute array during the descent. It won’t be as elegant as SpaceX’s rocket landings, but it will be efficient if it works as planned.
Fernando Corbató, whose work on computer time-sharing in the 1960s helped pave the way for the personal computer, as well as the computer password, died on Friday at a nursing home in Newburyport, Mass. He was 93.
His wife, Emily Corbató, said the cause was complications of diabetes. At his death he was a professor emeritus at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Dr. Corbató, who spent his entire career at M.I.T., oversaw a project in the early 1960s called the Compatible Time-Sharing System, or C.T.S.S., which allowed multiple users in different locations to access a single computer simultaneously through telephone lines.
At the time, computing was done in large batches, and users typically had to wait until the next day to get the results of a computation.