ReHacked #64: Society collapse, Potential Orwellian Horror of Central Bank Digital Currencies, Solar Is Dirt-Cheap, Sundar Pichai warns of threats to internet freedom and more

The free and open internet is under attack in countries around the world, Google boss Sundar Pichai has warned.

ReHacked #64: Society collapse, Potential Orwellian Horror of Central Bank Digital Currencies, Solar Is Dirt-Cheap, Sundar Pichai warns of threats to internet freedom and more
Nearly all US mainland coastal areas will see a surge in high-tide floods in the mid-2030s, when a lunar cycle will amplify rising sea levels, a NASA study found.

Don’t forget to share if you like what you read here, subscribe (if not yet) and leave a comment. Thanks!

MIT Predicted in 1972 That Society Will Collapse This Century. New Research Shows We’re on Schedule. #society #world #science #futurism #longread

In 1972, a team of MIT scientists got together to study the risks of civilizational collapse. Their system dynamics model published by the Club of Rome identified impending ‘limits to growth’ (LtG) that meant industrial civilization was on track to collapse sometime within the 21st century, due to overexploitation of planetary resources.

The controversial MIT analysis generated heated debate, and was widely derided at the time by pundits who misrepresented its findings and methods. But the analysis has now received stunning vindication from a study written by a senior director at professional services giant KPMG, one of the 'Big Four' accounting firms as measured by global revenue.

Solar Is Dirt-Cheap and About to Get Even More Powerful #technology #energetics

The solar industry has spent decades slashing the cost of generating electricity direct from the sun. Now it’s focusing on making panels even more powerful.

With savings in equipment manufacturing hitting a plateau and more recently pressured by rising prices of raw materials, producers are stepping up work on advances in technology — building better components and employing increasingly sophisticated designs to generate more electricity from the same-sized solar farms.

EU withheld a study that shows piracy doesn't hurt sales #copyrights

In 2013, the European Commission ordered a €360,000 ($430,000) study on how piracy affects sales of music, books, movies and games in the EU. However, it never ended up showing it to the public except for one cherry-picked section. That's possibly because the study concluded that there was no evidence that piracy affects copyrighted sales, and in the case of video games, might actually help them.

Done by Dutch organization Ecorys, the study might have been lost altogether if not for the effort of EU parliamentarian Julia Reda. She submitted a freedom of information request in July 2017, and after stalling twice, the commission finally produced it. The conclusion? "With the exception of recently released blockbusters, there is no evidence to support the idea that online copyright infringement displaces sales," Reda wrote on her blog.

hartator/wayback-machine-downloader: Download an entire website from the Wayback Machine. #software

Handwriting Is Better Than Typing When Learning a New Language, Study Finds #learning #psychology

In our daily lives, we spend a lot more time tapping at a screen and typing on a keyboard than writing with pencil and pen, so does handwriting tuition still offer anything useful? Absolutely, according to a new study.

Google boss Sundar Pichai warns of threats to internet freedom #internet #freespeech #privacy #security

The free and open internet is under attack in countries around the world, Google boss Sundar Pichai has warned.

He says many countries are restricting the flow of information, and the model is often taken for granted.

In an in-depth interview with the BBC, Pichai also addresses controversies around tax, privacy and data.

And he argues artificial intelligence is more profound than fire, electricity or the internet.

Pichai is chief executive of one of the most complex, consequential and rich institutions in history.

The Potential Orwellian Horror of Central Bank Digital Currencies #blockchain #economy

The development of CBDCs potentially represents one of the largest changes to modern banking and finance (as well as the global financial system) in decades, even though, as noted by the BIS, the concept was proposed by American economist, James Tobin, in 1987.

CBDCs have been the subject of much speculation of late regarding their intent and implications within economic and financial circles (both mainstream as well as alternative circles). However, to date, they have generated little debate or scrutiny by the public-at-large.

This latter fact is rather astonishing given the potential scale of change to economic life that may result from the introduction of CBDCs.

Huge Dividend Cripples World’s Largest Oil Company #ecenomy #energy

The transformation of Saudi Arabia’s flagship asset, Aramco, from perpetual cash-generation machine into a debt-laden giant is set to pick up pace in the coming weeks with a series of schemes aimed at raising much-needed funding for the now-beleaguered oil and gas company.  

It has not been forgotten by many senior Saudis that the reason for this terrible transformation of the former jewel in the crown of Saudi Arabia’s business sector - and the cornerstone of any power that the Kingdom might have had on the world stage – into a crippled corporate money pit is that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MbS) did not want to lose face in the initial public offering (IPO) for Aramco upon which he had staked his personal political reputation.

Having opened up the books of Aramco to the scrutiny of the international investment community in the run-up to the December 2019 IPO, so toxic a proposition was Aramco considered to be by then that a range of increasingly desperate measures were taken to sell even a small proportion of the originally intended stake. The most desperate of these was the pledge to guarantee a dividend payment to shareholders in Aramco of US$18.75 billion every single quarter of every single year – a total of US$75 billion every single year.

There Could Be a Simple Way to Offset The Negative Health Impacts of Terrible Sleep #health

Staying active and fit could help to ward off some of the negative health impacts that would normally result from low-quality sleep, according to a large study of 380,055 middle-aged people involved in the UK Biobank research project.

1.0 is released! · OpenSearch #software #opensource #privacy #security

OpenSearch is a community-driven, open source search and analytics suite derived from Apache 2.0 licensed Elasticsearch 7.10.2 & Kibana 7.10.2. It consists of a search engine daemon (OpenSearch), a visualization and user interface (OpenSearch Dashboards), and advanced features from Open Distro for Elasticsearch like security, alerting, anomaly detection and more.

Today’s release is the culmination of several stages of development. When the repositories were initially opened, the project team recapped the entire process to that point. Since then the pace of change on OpenSearch has picked up, with the addition of the plugins from the Open Distro for Elasticsearch project, as well as key updates provided by contributors across the community.

A privacy war is raging inside the W3C - Protocol — The people, power and politics of tech #internet #privacy #security #longread

James Rosewell could see his company's future was in jeopardy.

It was January 2020, and Google had just announced key details of its plan to increase privacy in its Chrome browser by getting rid of third-party cookies and essentially breaking the tools that businesses use to track people across the web. That includes businesses like 51Degrees, the U.K.-based data analytics company Rosewell has been running for the last 12 years, which uses real-time data to help businesses track their websites' performance.

"We realized at the end of January 2020 what Google was proposing was going to have an enormous impact on our customer base," Rosewell said.

Under the banner of a group called Marketers for an Open Web, Rosewell filed a complaint with the U.K.'s Competition and Markets Authority last year, charging Google with trying to shut out its smaller competitors, while Google itself continued to track users.

Germany Fines YouTube Six Figures for Removing Video of Anti-Lockdown Protest #internet #freespeech

A German court is ordering YouTube to pay a $118,000 fine for removing the video of a protest against Covid-19 lockdowns filmed in Switzerland last year.

A regional court in Dresden ordered to pay the 100,000 Euro fine last week more than a year after the company ran afoul of German laws. The court ordered YouTube to put the video online in May 2020, a month after YouTube removed it, but the company took weeks to comply. YouTube unsuccessfully argued the video violated its policies on Covid-19 “misinformation.”

Moon wobble to bring surge in coastal flooding in 2030s, NASA study predicts #nature #space #science

The reason for this expected surge is tied to the moon's 18.6-year cycle.

Right now, it's in the half that amplifies tides -- meaning high tides get higher and low tides get lower. Along most US coastlines, current sea levels have not risen so much that high tides regularly top flooding thresholds.

But that won't be the case next time around, which is in the mid-2030s.

That's because of how a wobble in the moon's orbit combines with rising sea levels. The wobble isn't new -- it was first reported in 1728. But how this movement affects the moon's gravitational pull, the main cause of the Earth's tides, will spark these new flooding concerns when it combines with rising sea levels.

Orbit design system #software

Open source design system for your next travel project.

If you would like to propose any interesting  article for the next    ReHacked issue, just hit reply or push this sexy  “Leave a comment” (if    not subscribed yet)  button below. It’s a nice  way to start a    discussion.

Thanks    for reading this digest and remember: we can make it better   together,   just leave your opinion or suggestions after pressing this  button  above  or simply hit the reply in your e-mail and  don’t forget -   sharing is  caring ;) Have a great week!


Subscribe to ReHacked Newsletter

Don’t miss out on the latest issues. Sign up now to get access to the library of members-only issues.