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Bitcoin's wild ride

Bitcoin's wild ride

Ten years ago, a mysterious computer programmer invented a new type of money that wasn't backed by any government or kept in any bank. There were no coins or bills, just long strings of letters and numbers stored inside a network of computers that anybody could be a part of by downloading some free software over the Internet. Today that computerized currency, bitcoin, is well-known, though little understood, and bitcoin's popularity has inspired the creation of thousands of other types of digital money, known as "cryptocurrency." Over the last decade, you could have made a five million percent profit by investing in cryptocurrency. Or you could have lost everything. It has been a wild ride, and few people have experienced the highs and lows more than a 29-year-old named Charlie Shrem.
Google's Huawei Android restrictions: what does it mean for you? [Updated]

Google's Huawei Android restrictions: what does it mean for you? [Updated]

The news that Google has blocked Huawei’s future access to Android updates – for both apps and timely security updates – not only casts doubt over the entire future of the Chinese smartphone manufacturer’s business, it also could have wide-ranging implications for the future of the global smartphone market. After US President Donald Trump placed Huawei on the ‘entity list’, limiting the business US brands could do with Huawei, Google has been forced to restrict the company's access to the Google Play Store, which means that in the future users won’t be able to gain access to popular titles, nor to speedy security updates to the Android OS.
Spotify begins testing its first hardware: a car smart assistant

Spotify begins testing its first hardware: a car smart assistant

Spotify is about to begin publicly testing its first hardware: a voice-controlled smart assistant for cars, meant to help Spotify learn how people consume audio while they’re driving. As part of the test, some Premium users will receive the device for free. The device, called Car Thing, plugs into a vehicle’s 12-volt outlet (aka a cigarette lighter) for power and connects to both a person’s car and phone over Bluetooth. The device can be activated by saying, “Hey, Spotify,” followed by a request for whatever the person wants to hear. It’ll be linked to a user’s Spotify account, so they can access their playlists.
Moulton wants medical marijuana for veterans — plus much bolder drug reforms

Moulton wants medical marijuana for veterans — plus much bolder drug reforms

Representative Seth Moulton of Massachusetts, a former Marine Corps officer, re-filed a package of bills in Congress Monday that would push the Department of Veterans Affairs to embrace medical marijuana. But Moulton, a Democrat who is running for president, also said in an interview that he supports much more significant changes to federal drug policy — declaring that anyone in the United States jailed solely for marijuana possession should be freed with a clear record, that the country should consider decriminalizing the use of hard drugs while cracking down on producers, and that so-called safe consumption sites should be legal.
There’s A Growing “Boycott Apple” Movement In China Because Of The US Trade War

There’s A Growing “Boycott Apple” Movement In China Because Of The US Trade War

HONG KONG — People in China are calling for a boycott of Apple products after tensions between China and the US reached new heights following fresh restrictions targeting Chinese telecom giant Huawei. Declaring a national emergency, President Donald Trump signed an executive order Wednesday that banned US telecom companies from installing foreign equipment that poses a national security threat. A separate order bans Huawei from buying US technology without government approval. On Weibo, China’s version of Twitter, users reacted to US pressure on Huawei by rejecting Apple products. “The functions in Huawei are comparable to Apple iPhones or even better. We have such a good smartphone alternative, why are we still using Apple?” commented one user.
Amazon Unveils Rendering, New Details For First Phase Of HQ2 Project

Amazon Unveils Rendering, New Details For First Phase Of HQ2 Project

The first phase of new development at Amazon HQ2 is beginning to take shape.  Amazon, in a blog post Thursday, released a rendering and description of the first two new office towers it plans to build at its National Landing campus.  The tech giant said it filed development plans for the first phase this week. The plans call for two towers reaching 22 stories with 2.1M SF of office space and 50K SF of new retail space. ZGF Architects designed the Phase 1 buildings, which are planned to achieve LEED Gold certification. 
2020 Presidential Hopeful Andrew Yang Says Regulators ‘Owe’ Clarity on Rules for Crypto Industry

2020 Presidential Hopeful Andrew Yang Says Regulators ‘Owe’ Clarity on Rules for Crypto Industry

Presidential contender Andrew Yang took the stage at Consensus 2019 on Wednesday, facing a friendly (if not slightly boisterous) crowd as he discussed bitcoin, blockchain and his bid for the White House. Amid jokes about a possible YangCoin, Yang essentially pitched himself as a sympathetic friend of the crypto community in an appearance that came weeks after his campaign issued a policy statement on digital asset regulation. He also opined on the declining influence of traditional media, the threat of climate change, his Freedom Dividend pitch, and current U.S. president Donald Trump (“The opposite of Donald Trump is an Asian candidate who likes math.”)
Doctor Who's interactive episode The Runaway could be the start of "many new adventures"

Doctor Who's interactive episode The Runaway could be the start of "many new adventures"

Doctor Who might not be returning to television till 2020, but a new interactive mini-episode out today allows fans to fly the TARDIS and help the Doctor (Jodie Whittaker) to save the universe. The Runaway, available for free in the UK, is an animated special that can be viewed using a range of VR headsets. Jodie Whittaker lends her voice to the episode, which sees the Doctor recruit you as her unlikely assistant in a race against time to return a strange and potentially dangerous creature called Volta to his home planet. Armed with your own sonic screwdriver, it’s down to you to help the Doctor as she faces the forces of evil in this immersive adventure.
How do tornadoes form? This drone-based project seeks to unravel the secrets of spinning storms

How do tornadoes form? This drone-based project seeks to unravel the secrets of spinning storms

WALNUT, Iowa — A multiyear project in the Great Plains rolled out Monday with hopes of better understanding supercell thunderstorms and the tornadoes they spawn. Led by officials at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln, the TORUS project — Targeted Observation by Radars and UAS (Unmanned Aircraft Systems) of Supercells — is deployed until June 16, with a second deployment planned in 2020. Dozens of researchers from multiple academic institutions and the federal government are participating. Researchers said they hope the project will help to improve forecasts for supercells, which are thunderstorms that spin, and the hazards they can produce. “TORUS aims to use the data collected to improve the conceptual model of supercell thunderstorms (the parent storms of the most destructive tornadoes) by exposing how small-scale structures within these storms might lead to tornado formation,” according to the Earth Observing Laboratory at the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colo.
Democratic Congressional Bill Protects Medical Cannabis But Not Broader State Marijuana Laws

Democratic Congressional Bill Protects Medical Cannabis But Not Broader State Marijuana Laws

Medical marijuana states and industrial hemp programs would continue to be protected from federal interference under a wide-ranging congressional spending bill that was released by a House subcommittee on Thursday. This marks the first time that the medical cannabis rider has been included in a base House appropriations bill as introduced, signaling that the chamber’s new Democratic majority is paying closer attention to the issue as standalone marijuana legislation separately makes its way through Congress. Last year, the rider, which has been federal law since 2014, was added during a full Appropriations Committee hearing. Prior to that it had been inserted through floor amendments.


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