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@The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy
Our Global Future in the 21st Century is based on "The Third Industrial Revolution" which finally connects our new ICT infrastructure with distributed energy sources that are both renewable and sustainable
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Meet the man behind Silk Road, the online drug marketplace the FBI has seized | NetworkWorld.com

Meet the man behind Silk Road, the online drug marketplace the FBI has seized | NetworkWorld.com | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

The FBI arrested the proprietor of Silk Road, the industry-leading online black market for buying and selling drugs, in San Francisco yesterday, according to several reports.


An FBI criminal complaint [PDF] alleges that Ross William Ulbricht, whose listed aliases include “Dread Pirate Roberts” and “Silk Road,” violated federal law by delivering, distributing and dispensing controlled substances “by means of the Internet.” Heroin, cocaine, LSD, and methamphetamine are listed specifically, although Silk Road offered access to a much broader variety of drugs. Ulbricht is charged with operating the website, as well as soliciting “a Silk Road user to execute a murder-for-hire of another Silk Road user, who was threatening to release the identities of thousands of users of the site,” according to the FBI document.


Time Newsfeed reporter Jessica Roy reports that Department of Justice documents show that the FBI also seized $3.6 million worth of Bitcoin. In the report, FBI agent Christopher Tarbell describes Silk Road as “the most sophisticated and extensive criminal marketplace on the Internet today.”


Tarbell claims several thousand drug dealers had used Silk Road to move hundreds of kilograms of drugs to “well over a hundred thousand buyers,” and estimates that the site generated $1.2 billion in sales and $80 million in commissions.


Information gleaned from the FBI’s investigation into the servers hosting the website showed that Silk Road had more than 957,000 accounts as of July. Between February 2011, when the FBI began its investigation, and July of this year, more than 1.2 million transactions were completed.


In addition to drugs, Silk Road was also used to solicit a variety of other illegal services, including hacking social networking accounts for identity theft, hacking ATM machines, and connections to real-world services for counterfeit money, stolen credit card information, firearms and ammunition, and hit men in more than 10 countries, the report claims. The site used the Tor network to help maintain anonymity.


“The site has sought to make conducting illegal transactions on the Internet as easy and frictionless as shopping online at mainstream ecommerce websites,” the report says.


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Toby Plowman's curator insight, December 28, 2014 5:18 AM

#8 Potential uses of TOR that can be extremely negative and promote unlawful actions

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NM: Renewable Energy versus the economic impact of WSMR | Las Cruces Sun-News

NM: Renewable Energy versus the economic impact of WSMR | Las Cruces Sun-News | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Already dependent on federal government jobs, New Mexico's junior Senator Martin Heinrich is supporting a plan to replace White Sands Missile Range jobs with renewable energy jobs. Most of these would be temporary construction jobs and would not be in Dona Ana County, but would be in the northern part of the state. Worse yet, the impact of the SunZia high power transmission line project could be the beginning of the end of White Sands Missile Range (WSMR) with its annual economic impact of $834 million to southern New Mexico.


Our County Commission and a City Council have been very prompt in issuing statements and passing resolutions in favor of protecting the wilderness or in support of gay marriage, but have failed to pass any resolution to protect WSMR and its $2.3 million per day impact to the local economy. Nor have they taken overt actions to try to avoid the economic impact of potential job losses for the more than 11,000 workers on WSMR each day if the SunZia project is approved. These workers buy houses, support the local economy and pay taxes (including GRT) and their loss would be catastrophic to our local economy.


According to John Conger, assistant secretary of defense, testing is absolutely necessary and it should be clearly understood that no other location exists in the United States where it is possible to conduct flight tests with the footprint requirements these weapons systems

present. Approval of the SunZia power line would preclude WSMR from testing air and missile defense weapons systems vital to our national defense and would have a devastating impact on national security.


Senator Tom Udall, Congressman Steve Pearce, and Governor Susana Martinez all recognize the significance and importance of WSMR to our national defense and to the state of New Mexico and oppose the location of this project. They are all concerned about any loss of its capabilities and the economic impact it would have on this state. They are concerned that renewable energy projects sponsored by private corporations or public-private partnerships may diminish the role of WSMR.


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Top 5 EU Environment priorities: All you need to know this autumn | ViEUws.eu

Top 5 EU Environment priorities: All you need to know this autumn | ViEUws.eu | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Sonja van Renssen introduces the top 5 Environment issues discussed in the EU institutions at the moment, namely:


- Air quality policy review: it revises the national emission ceilings or NEC directive, which sets national emission limits for transboundary pollutants such as NOx and SOx. The proposals are likely to be modest in scope, setting for the first time goals for 2020 and caps on fine particulate matter the black carbon. They may also regulate methane.


-  Thoughts on shale gas: a study for the Commission identified gaps in EU environment law when it comes to shale gas exploration. The Commission is therefore expected to present a framework to plug these gaps.


- Using less plastic bags: The proposal was reportedly blocked by the Commission’s secretary general, Catherine Day earlier this year, on the grounds that jobs and growth should be the EU’s top priorities. But it is back on the autumn agenda.


- Resource efficiency: expecting two communications from the Commission, one on sustainable food and one on sustainable buildings, both towards the end of the year. They will be followed by public consultations launched in July. In both cases, DG Environment proposes a common method for measuring environmental impacts.


- Ship recycling: a new EU law on ship recycling still needs to be approved by the Parliament’s plenary this autumn.  The deal as it stands would forbid ships flying an EU flag from being broken up on beaches in the likes of India or Bangladesh.


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NSA spying on EU: "We are seeking clarity from US", says EU Commission | ViEUws.eu

NSA spying on EU: "We are seeking clarity from US", says EU Commission | ViEUws.eu | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Cornelia Primosch is joined by the European Commission spokeswoman, Pia Ahrenkilde Hansen, to discuss recent revelations about NSA surveillance on EU institutions.


Over the weekend, the German weekly magazine Der Spiegel reported that the NSA has been spying on European Union institutional buildings, citing documents that were leaked by the NSA wistleblower Edward Snowden. The allegations come at a bad time: with talks on an EU-US free trade agreement in the starting blocks, the revelations risk to hamper negotiations and damage the trust between the transatlantic partners.


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Warm Enough for You?: Eugene Robinson | Truthdig.com

Warm Enough for You?: Eugene Robinson | Truthdig.com | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Skeptics and deniers can make all the noise they want, but a landmark new report is unequivocal: There is a 95 percent chance that human-generated emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases are changing the climate in ways that court disaster.

That’s the bottom line from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which Monday released the latest of its comprehensive, every-six-years assessments of the scientific consensus about climate change. According to the IPCC, there is only a 1-in-20 chance that human activity is not causing dangerous warming.

You may like those betting odds. If so, let’s get together for a friendly game of poker, and please don’t forget to bring cash.

The squawking from naysayers has recently been all about a supposed “pause” in global warming. They say there has been no detectable warming in the past 15 years and claim that any temperature rise that scientists attribute to human activity is really part of some grand natural cycle—probably nothing to worry about, and, in any event, nothing we can control.

One look at the data indicates that the skeptics’ view is wishful thinking, at best. It is true that if you look at the period 1998-2013, there is very little warming. But that is because 1998 was an extreme outlier—a sharp spike on the graph. That year was much warmer than the preceding or subsequent few years.

If you plot global temperatures over a longer time period, covering 50 or 100 years, you get a line that jiggles up and down but generally trends upward at an alarming slope. Look closely and you’ll notice that 2005 and 2010 were both a bit warmer than 1998.


Why is this happening?


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Fiber optics on the right wavelength to prevent rail accidents | GizMag.com

Fiber optics on the right wavelength to prevent rail accidents | GizMag.com | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

A team from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University is to release details of a seven-year program to monitor a 36-km stretch of high-speed rail line using a series of special fiber optic sensors . According to a press release put out by the Optical Society, the system has detected "anomalous vibrations" on 30 occasions, allowing the early rectification of emerging problems that could conceivably have gone on to cause rail accidents.


The system uses fiber Bragg gratings (FBGs), which are special reflectors built within fiber optic cables that reflect only certain wavelengths of light at any given time. When embedded into either the track or mechanical components of trains, those wavelengths change measurably according to stresses, strains and temperature changes. By monitoring these measurements, the FBGs can be used to identify anomalous and potentially dangerous conditions such as excessive vibrations and mechanical faults.


In the seven years since its installation, the system has taken over 10 million measurements along the high-speed commuter line joining Hong Kong and China. Of the 10 million, only 30 are thought to have been out of the ordinary. However, according to the Hong Kong Polytechnic University's Hwa-yaw Tam, in a handful of cases these were early warnings of emerging dangers. Because the system is optical, electromagnetic interference from the rail power lines isn't an issue.


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Silk Road mastermind faces 30 years in attempted murder charge | GigaOM Tech News

Silk Road mastermind faces 30 years in attempted murder charge | GigaOM Tech News | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

The surreal story of the FBI’s takedown of the 29-year-old baron of Silk Road, an online drugs and weapons bazaar, became even stranger last night as new criminal charges emerged that accuse “Dread Pirate Roberts” of plotting to kill an employee.


As the Washington Post reported, the new charges describe how the Dread Pirate Roberts, whose real name is Ross Ulbricht, paid an undercover agent $80,000 to torture and kill and employee who he believed had snitched on him.


The plot led the US Attorneys office for Maryland to charge Ulbricht with Attempted Witness Murder, a federal charge that carries a sentence of up to 30 years (it could have been death if the murder had taken place). This charge comes in addition to a host of others, including computer fraud and money laundering, that carry sentences of 10 to 20 years.


The proposed murder, as the indictment explains, came about after Ulbricht asked the agent — who had been posing as a big time drug dealer on Silk Road — to take revenge on an employee he believed had stolen Bitcoins (the virtual currency used on Silk Road) and behaved disloyally.


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Bitcoin Values Plummet $500M, Then Recover, After Silk Road Bust | Wired Enterprise | Wired.com

Bitcoin Values Plummet $500M, Then Recover, After Silk Road Bust | Wired Enterprise | Wired.com | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Bitcoin, world’s most popular digital currency, had a roller coaster ride today after the federal government shut down the Silk Road, an online marketplace where millions of bitcoins were swapped for drugs and black market products over the past two years.


As news of the Silk Road shutdown spread, bitcoin values took a tumble, initially dropping by about 20 percent, or close to $500 million by mid-morning, Pacific time. But values soon crawled back. On the Bitstamp exchange, for example, bitcoins dropped from about $125 to $90, before climbing back to $115 at midday. On the slightly inflated Mt. Gox exchange, values went from $140 to 109, before jumping back to $128.


In addition to taking down the Silk Road, The Federal Bureau of Investigation arrested Ross William Ulbricht, 29, the San Francisco man who allegedly ran the site under the alias “Dread Pirate Roberts.” He’s facing drug trafficking, money laundering, and hacking charges. In in an affidavit filed in the case, the FBI specifically addressed Bitcoin, saying that although the digital currency isn’t just for the black market, it can be used for nefarious purposes.


“Bitcoins are not illegal in and of themselves and have known legitimate uses,” wrote FBI Special Agent Christopher Tarbell. “However, bitcoins are also known to be used with cybercriminals for money-laundering purposes, given the ease with which they can be used to move money anonymously.”


There are about 11.7 million bitcoins in circulation, with another 25 created every 10 minutes. Today, you can buy groceries using bitcoins. Or a computer. Or a pint of beer. But after it was launched two-and-a-half years ago, the Silk Road quickly became one of the fledgling digital currency’s most popular marketplaces.


According to the court documents released in connection with the takedown, the Silk Road handled BTC 9.5 million in transactions over its two-year life. The feds peg that at $1.2 billion, but that estimate prices bitcoins at $126 each, which was the value as of yesterday. For most of the life of Silk Road, they traded for much less than that.


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When data meets agriculture: Monsanto to buy Climate Corp. for $930M | GigaOM Clean Tech News

When data meets agriculture: Monsanto to buy Climate Corp. for $930M | GigaOM Clean Tech News | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Monsanto, the giant agricultural company, says it will acquire data analytics firm the Climate Corp. in a cash deal valued at $930 million. This deal is an obvious extension of data analytics into the world of big agriculture, but it’s also a perfect example of how the combo of data and the internet of things is going to disrupt established industries in a way that traditional computing never could.


Climate Corp offered targeted insurance policies to farmers that incorporated all sorts of data about historical and current agriculture and weather. Among the data the system knows are the shape of every single of the 20 million crop lands in the United States, what is grown on each every year, what the crop yields were, and the water-holding capacity of the soil. Each predictive simulation analyzes 5 trillion data points.


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India: Why biometric identification of citizens must be resisted? Part I | Moneylife

India: Why biometric identification of citizens must be resisted? Part I | Moneylife | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

The core issue is: Will efforts to undermine the fundamental right of Indians to move and transact freely around the country and to live without constantly having to prove who they are, succeed or fail?

Ever wondered as to why bankers are immensely interested in biometric identification and verification of citizens? Biometric identification implies that movements of present and future generations of citizens are tracked like those of bacteria under a microscope. This exercise of creating a centralised ‘online database’ of biometric information of Indians is unfolding under the supervision of Planning Commission’s Nandan Nilekani and Home Ministry’s C Chandramouli.  The core issue here is: will efforts to undermine the fundamental right of Indians, to move and transact freely around the country and to live without constantly having to prove who they are, succeed or fail?

 

What is ironical is that while it is inevitable that no centralised electronic database of biometric information can be made leak-proof in the post Wikileaks and Edward Snowden world, bankers, biometric technology companies and their collaborators are marketing it as an answer to increasing demand for identity proof and identity protection from citizens.


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New eyeglasses translate languages on restaurant menus, street signs | NetworkWorld.com

NTT Docomo introduced a new head-worn device that overlays the user's native language onto foreign-language text as the user looks at it during the recent Combined Exhibition of Advanced Technologies show in Japan, according to an AFP report.


The glasses will be the most useful when travelers are navigating a foreign country or trying to read text in a foreign language. Examples given in a statement provided to AFP include reading restaurant menus, although the ability to read foreign-language street signs may prove quite valuable as well.


The report is scarce on information regarding how the glasses work, reducing it to "a combination of cameras, computers and know-how to give the wearer a completely different view of what they're looking at." A photo of the device can be viewed here.


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Europe's Largest Internet Exchange Decides To Open US Office, Risks Making Itself Subject To NSA Demands | Techdirt.com

Europe's Largest Internet Exchange Decides To Open US Office, Risks Making Itself Subject To NSA Demands | Techdirt.com | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

The Internet may be a series of tubes, but those tubes have to be joined together. That takes place at Internet exchanges (IXs), where different ISPs can pass on and receive data. One of the largest and most important such IXs is AMS-IX, which is based in the capital of the Netherlands, Amsterdam. Techdirt reader Dirk Poot points out that AMS-IX has just made the following move:


the Board of the AMS-IX Association proposed the set up of a US-based legal entity for possible expansion to the United States. In an extraordinary General Meeting (GM) held on 27 September 2013, AMS-IX members approved the set up of a US-based legal entity by a majority of votes.

Recently, an opportunity arose with the Open-IX initiative for AMS-IX to expand and build exchanges in the US. Representatives from US-based content providers and telecom operators -- many of them current AMS-IX members or customers -- as well as other Internet industry parties, such as datacenters, founded this initiative. It aims to encourage the development of neutral and distributed Internet exchanges and reduce IP interconnection complexity and cost in the US. In the US this is more complicated and prices are higher than in Europe, where the neutral and distributed Internet exchange model is more common.


It's understandable that US content providers and telecom operators would want to reduce their costs in this way. But as an email written by Erik Bais to AMS-IX members points out, there is a huge risk here for AMS-IX:


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What Is the 'Internet of Things'? | Cadell Last Blog | Huff Post

What Is the 'Internet of Things'? | Cadell Last Blog | Huff Post | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Do you remember the sound of "dial-up" Internet? For many this sound defines a decade of emerging obsessive Internet use. For my generation, it marks a decade of battling for family computer time, while simultaneously hoping that no one needed to use the landline.


We've come a long way haven't we?


In the '90s computers invaded our homes. In the 2000s computers invaded our pockets. This decade, all our clothing, accessories, vehicles, and everything (?!) appear on the verge of computerization.


Welcome to the Internet of Things (IoT).


Currently the idea of the IoT has many definitions. Most include a world in the not-too-distant future where most objects are computerized and seamlessly integrated into our information network, creating "smart" grids, homes, and environments.


By Cisco's calculations 80 "things" are coming onto the Internet every second (you can watch this in real time here). At the moment over 10.5 billion objects are on the Internet, with conservative projections estimating over 50 billion objects will be connected by 2020. If this vision is realized about 2.7 percent of "things" in the world would be connected.


But that would just be the beginning. Helen Duce, the director of the radio frequency identification (RFID) center at the University of Cambridge, recently explained her vision for the IoT:


We have a clear vision: to create a world where every object, from jumbo jets to sewing needles, is linked to the Internet. Compelling as this vision is, it is only achievable if this system is adopted by everyone everywhere. Success will be nothing less than global adoption.


Global adoption would result in between 50 and 100 trillion objects connecting to the Internet. Our entire planet would be infused with an ambient intelligence.


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PRISM & SWIFT scandals have 'been a shock and revelation', says ALDE | ViEUws.eu

PRISM & SWIFT scandals have 'been a shock and revelation', says ALDE | ViEUws.eu | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Jennifer Baker is joined by Neil Corlett, spokesperson for the ALDE Group, to discuss the PRISM scandal, involving the US National Security Agency (NSA) collecting data on European civilians and the SWIFT scandal, regarding bank account information monitoring.


Mr Corlett states that “we cannot brush this under the carpet any more”, sharing his shock that the United States is using their intelligence agency to spy on their allies. In regards to the SWIFT scandal, involving personal bank transfer data, he warns that the Terrorist Finance Tracking program is not set up to allow the NSA to spy on private citizens, going over their privacy rights. The ALDE spokesperson shares that ”the EU needs its own clear rules on data privacy” to guide all future negotiations with third countries.


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EDF Renewable Energy Dedicate 143 MW Californian Solar Project | CleanTechnica

EDF Renewable Energy Dedicate 143 MW Californian Solar Project | CleanTechnica | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it
French energy giant EDF Renewable Energy, owners of a portfolio containing over 5 GW of developed projects and 2.4 GW of installed capacity, have inaugurated their latest project, the 143 MW Catalina Solar project located near Kern County in California, US, the company’s largest utility-scale solar PV project currently installed.
Construction of the project began in May of last year, and was fully completed in June, 2013. Official dedication for the project was on the 27th of September, celebrating the completion of what Bloomberg New Energy Finance is reporting to be the world’s 8th largest photovoltaic plant.
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Energy & climate priorities of the Lithuanian EU Presidency | ViEUws.eu

Energy & climate priorities of the Lithuanian EU Presidency | ViEUws.eu | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Leading energy journalist Hughes Belin is joined by the Lithuanian Minister of Energy Jaroslav Neverovič to discuss the energy & climate priorities of the Lithuanian presidency.


Lithuania will seek to find a balanced approach on:


- ILUC, seeking to protect existing investments
- Shale gas, underlying that there will be no legislative proposal from the Commission on the matter
- ETS, stating that changes should not prevent economic growth
- the energy & climate 2030 debate


We should be careful not to introduce new challenges in respect of regulation and impact on industry. We should seek for balanced solutions.”


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Connected Continent: EU Telecoms Single Market 'has huge potential' | ViEUws.eu

Connected Continent: EU Telecoms Single Market 'has huge potential' | ViEUws.eu | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Jennifer Baker is joined by  Pia Ahrenkilde Hansen, spokesperson of the European Commission, to discuss the completion of the European Telecoms Single Market.


The Commission will adopt a legislative package aimed at completing the European Single Market for electronic communications on September 12, 2013. According to Ms Hansen, pushing down prices, opening accessibility, allowing for better conditions for competition and achieving network neutrality gives the legislative package the power to promote GDP growth in Member States by as much as 1% and create close to 900.000 jobs.


‘ It is part of the deal that both consumers and businesses benefit prom this package’, said the Commission spokesperson.


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Undetectable hardware Trojans could compromise cryptography | GizMag.com

Undetectable hardware Trojans could compromise cryptography | GizMag.com | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Researchers have shown that it is possible to compromise the functioning of a cryptographic chip without changing its physical layout. Based on altering the distribution of dopants in a few components on the chip during fabrication, this method represents a big challenge for cyber-security as it is nearly impossible to detect with any currently practical detection scheme.


Progress in the design and fabrication of processor chips is mainly aimed at making them faster and smaller. There is another important requirement, however – ensuring that they function as intended. In particular, the cryptographic functions of new chips must provide the level of security with which they were designed. If they fail in this task, even use of sophisticated security software, physical isolation, and well vetted operators cannot ensure the security of a system.


Such structural attacks on the functions of a chip are called hardware Trojans, and are capable of rendering ineffective the security protecting our most critical computer systems and data. Both industry and governments have put a great deal of not very public effort into the problem of hardware Trojans. The most reliable tests to find hardware Trojans will be applied to the finished product. So how are they tested and what are the implications of the new research?


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The carbon budget doesn't add up | Climate News Network

The carbon budget doesn't add up | Climate News Network | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Amid the swirling cross-currents of praise and damnation which greeted last week’s publication of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fifth Assessment Report (AR5), one key finding has attracted fewer headlines than it deserved.


The authors of AR5 said the world had already used between half and two-thirds of its “carbon budget” – the amount of carbon dioxide it can afford to burn this century without pushing us over the edge to a planet more than 2°C warmer than in the pre-industrial era.


The 2°C threshold is a limit agreed by most of the world’s governments as a safety point beyond which global warming could lurch uncontrollably towards a possibly irreversible catastrophe for modern society.


It is not a scientifically-validated figure, and many climate scientists argue that it would make better sense to stop warming increasing above 1.5°C. But at least the 2°C limit has wide political acceptance – in principle.


In practice, though, emissions of all greenhouse gases continue to rise, with little prospect that they will start falling any time soon.


Su Wei is China’s chief climate change negotiator and director general of the department of climate change of its National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).


He said recently: “If we continue with business as usual, the long-term average temperature increase is more likely to be between 3.6°C and 5.3°C (compared with pre-industrial levels), with most of the increase occurring in this century.”


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New 'white spaces' research from Microsoft and China makes it easier to find vacant spectrum | NetworkWorld.com

New 'white spaces' research from Microsoft and China makes it easier to find vacant spectrum | NetworkWorld.com | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Identifying and using vacant "white space" spectrum for Wi-Fi may get simpler, more efficient, and cheaper thanks to a new project by Microsoft and a team of Chinese researchers.


The project focused specifically on analyzing indoor white spaces, a name for vacant VHF and UHF TV channels. Then the researchers created algorithms and software, used with RF sensors, to create a system to identify and track this indoor spectrum. The system, called White-space Indoor Spectrum EnhanceR or WISER, is able to identify 30% to 50% more white space spectrum than alternative methods, most of which have been designed for outdoors.


A paper outlining the project and the prototype system is available in on online PDF file. The authors are Ranveer Chandra, with Microsoft Research, and five colleagues with the Chinese University of Hong Kong: Xuhang Ying, Jincheng Zhang, Lichao Yan, Guanglin Zhang, and Minghau Chen.


A cluster of RF sensors in a building sample the airwaves to identify and assess indoor white spaces. That data, along with the locations of wireless access points and of self-reporting clients, is stored in geo-location database. Some of the WISER algorithms deal with profiling the building, others with where to place the sensors, according to Chandra.


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The Limits Of Intelligence Gathering: Kenyan Govt. Warned A Year Before Attack That Terrorists Were Targeting Westgate Mall | Techdirt.com

The Limits Of Intelligence Gathering: Kenyan Govt. Warned A Year Before Attack That Terrorists Were Targeting Westgate Mall | Techdirt.com | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

The narrative in place is that national intelligence agencies need tons of intrusive surveillance programs in order to detect terrorist threats and respond accordingly. Unfortunately, the narrative fails to hold up to scrutiny, prompting these intelligence agencies to ask for some credit to be given for all of their hard work, post-tragedy.

The Boston Marathon bombing is just one example. The head of the NSA, Gen. Alexander, has played up his agency's extraordinary hindsight, which allowed it to rule out the chance of another bombing. This occurred at roughly the same time that the only surviving perp was being taken into custody. Plaudits and such but one would think tapping the backbone of damn near everything would result in more prevention, which Americans would unanimously agree to be the preferable to crystal clear hindsight.

This problem isn't limited to just the NSA. Reports from Kenyan intelligence officials obtained by Al Jazeera (but hosted at Public Intelligence) indicate that government and intelligence agencies had almost a year's advance notice that such an attack would take place.


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Mapping the Glum Inequality of Happiness in the World | TheAtlanticCities.com

Mapping the Glum Inequality of Happiness in the World | TheAtlanticCities.com | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Where are people all whistles and chuckles? Where are they the most miserable?


If you have a fatalistic view of life, the answer will utterly not surprise you. The planet's happiest denizens reside in wealthy countries, whereas the least joyful live in impoverished nations. People with mid-range levels of contentment seem to have crowded into Russia, for what it's worth.


The geographic inequality of personal satisfaction is evident in this new visualization from Jonathan Hull, a Salt Lake City-based designer whose own level of happiness remains relatively unchanged despite now knowing a big part of how happiness works.


Hull got the idea for this project after reading about Columbia University's inaugural World Happiness Report, commissioned by the United Nations Conference on Happiness. He used that study to build a color-coded Earth in which dark orange is supremely cheery and white is deeply dejected. Then he borrowed GDP info for various countries and made an accompanying map, where darker blues and purple are wealthier places. "Just a bit of 'Does money buy happiness?' kind of approach," he says.


So, does it? Compare for yourself. Here's world happiness:


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Middle East operators plot a new terrestial network path to Europe | TeleGepgraphy.com

A consortium of Middle East operators has unveiled plans for a new terrestrial network that would link several Gulf states to Turkey and Europe. UAE operator du, Vodafone Qatar, and Kuwaiti operators Zajil and Zain Group, announced their plans for the Middle East-Europe Terrestrial System (MEETS) in Dubai on 30 September. The first phase, scheduled to launch in Q1 2014, is a terrestrial link between the UAE, Qatar, Bahrain, and Kuwait. It is comprised of a fibre pair running alongside the Gulf Cooperation Council Interconnection Authority’s regional power grid. The second phase of MEETS would extend connectivity from Kuwait to Turkey via Iraq.


The new network will help meet rapidly growing demand for international capacity in the region. According to data from TeleGeography’s Global Bandwidth Research Service, the aggregate international bandwidth requirements of the UAE, Qatar, Bahrain, and Kuwait grew at a compound annual rate of 67% between 2009 and 2013.


‘MEETS will be a welcome addition to the growing number of terrestrial routes in the Middle East,’ said TeleGeography analyst Paul Brodsky. ‘These routes not only offer geographic diversity but avoid the submarine cable bottleneck in Egypt.’


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Humanrithm: Saving the Web from Chaos

"I love it when a plan comes together!"

Watch this trailer to check out the Scoop.it team in action, literally. Co-founders Guillaume Decugis and Marc Rougier plan to save the world. How? With a secret plan, code name: Humanrithm. What is this? A powerful combination of technology and community-driven content curation.

Share ideas that matter through clever publishing and shine on the Web with Scoop.it! Sign up today at: http://scoop.it


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US cable firms like Netflix best in solitary confinement | CNET News

US cable firms like Netflix best in solitary confinement | CNET News | @The Convergence of ICT & Distributed Renewable Energy | Scoop.it

Netflix says it has had a standing invitation to US pay-television providers to join forces, but so far nobody has shown up for the party.


Despite the benefits to US consumers that would arise from directly linking the top online-video service in the country to the way vast swaths of people watch television on the biggest screen in their house, experts say pay-TV providers here are most likely to keep Netflix at arm's length.


Earlier this month, Netflix sealed its first-ever deal with a pay-television operator. In the UK, Virgin Media said the company's streaming video service would be accessible to its subscribers using TiVo set-top boxes, first with an an initial 40,000 home pilot period and later to 1.7 million of Virgin's TiVo homes. Virgin is the UK's second largest pay-TV operator behind Sky's satellite service, which has more than 10 million customers to Virgin's less than 4 million.


Last week, another European pay-TV distributor joined the bandwagon. Com Hem, the largest cable operator in Sweden, announced a deal with Netflix to put its app on Com Hem's TiVo starting in December. Com Hem reaches about 1.8 million households.


Also last week, Netflix's chief financial officer, David Wells, told Bloomberg on the sidelines of an investor conference that US cable operators have had an open offer to add Netflix for two years.


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