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  1. After years of pressure from ISPs, net neutrality is under threat by the FCC itself. Chair Tom Wheeler promised to revive the Open Internet Order after it saw an unceremonious defeat in January, but a leaked version of his latest proposal would let companies pay ISPs for a "fast lane" to subscribers, undermining the spirit of the original rules, which barred companies from discriminating between services. Despite Wheeler’s reassurances, this new proposal is the exact opposite of net neutrality. It could undermine both the companies of today and the startups of tomorrow. It might also be exactl
  2. Tim Berners-Lee is credited with inventing the world wide web and now he’s calling on us to save it. The British engineer and computer scientist recently released a Contract for the Web – a list of commitments for governments, businesses and individuals to make in order to tackle fake news and privacy violations online. According to a new report by Amnesty International, the internet is threatened as never before by the dominance of companies such as Facebook and Google), which stand accused of “enabling human rights harm at a population scale”. Tec
  3. This week the EU's controversial "upload filter" plans moved ahead. Opponents of the plans warn that this could "ban memes" and "destroy the Internet" as we know it. If that rhetoric is true, the Internet is actually already being destroyed right under our noses, with surprisingly little pushback. Online censorship has always been a hot topic and with the EU’s proposed “upload filters” hitting the headlines, it’s at the top of the agenda once again. The fear of losing the ability to share ‘memes’ plays well on social media. Similarly, many journalists happil
  4. There have long been warnings that tough anti-piracy measures will eventually 'break the Internet'. While that catastrophe is yet to happen, meddling in any piece of complex machinery is likely to lead to unexpected consequences. Like the hobbyist tuner trying to squeeze the last bit of performance out of an already perfectly good car, exhilaration - or catching fire - is always around the corner. Back in the 80s, I fancied myself as a half-decent 8-bit coder but of course, there was always someone who did it outrageously better. Like my idols in the C64 demo scene, for
  5. Under his direction, the site grew to become a credible video game streaming contender . Matt Salsamendi was just 18 years old when he co-founded Mixer, the site which has grown to be the third most popular video game streaming platform. Now, he's announced he is moving on from the company to take on new projects. The company was originally called Beam, and it was acquired by Microsoft in 2016. It was subsequently renamed as Mixer, where it succeeded in tempting over some hi
  6. RuNet disconnection tests were successful, according to the Russian government. The Russian government announced on Monday that it concluded a series of tests during which it successfully disconnected the country from the worldwide internet. The tests were carried out over multiple days, starting last week, and involved Russian government agencies, local internet service providers, and local Russian internet companies. The goal was to test if the country's national internet infrastructure -- known inside Russia as RuNet -- could function without
  7. Eric Schmidt, who has been the CEO of Google and executive chairman of its parent company, Alphabet, predicts that within the next decade there will be two distinct internets: one led by the U.S. and the other by China. Village Global VC. The firm enlists tech luminaries — including Schmidt, Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates and Diane Green — as limited partners, then invests their money into early-stage tech ventures. At the event, economist Tyler Cowen asked, “What are the chances that the internet fragments over the years?” Schmidt said: BRI is an economi
  8. Almost every night, I sit in bed and stare at my phone. Then I fall asleep and dream about the internet. I send friends imaginary iMessages and hear the woo-Oop sound and then the ding when they reply. I scroll through nonsensical tweets and read Slack messages from my boss. Since I bought my first smartphone in 2008, the internet has oozed its way into the subterranean parts of my consciousness. Maybe it feels like the same thing has happened to you too. Plenty of research has looked at how smartphones and social media sites affect our habits, our relationships,
  9. Benin has joined a growing list of African states imposing levies for using the internet. The government passed a decree in late August taxing its citizens for accessing the internet and social-media apps. The directive, first proposed in July, institutes a fee (link in French) of 5 CFA francs ($0.008) per megabyte consumed through services like Facebook, WhatsApp, and Twitter. It also introduces a 5% fee, on top of taxes, on texting and calls, according to advocacy group Internet Sans Frontières (ISF). The new law has been denounced, with citizens and advocates us
  10. For years, the number of Americans who have reported using the internet, social media, and smartphones has been on a meteoric rise. But that rate has slowed to a near-stall. New data published this week by the Pew Research Center show that, since 2016, that number has plateaued, indicating those technologies have reached a saturation point among many groups of people. The percentage of Americans using smartphones (77%), the internet (88% to 89%), and social media (69%) has remained virtually unchanged during the last two years. “Put simply, in some instances there
  11. The next 50 years may bring pervasive connectivity, brain-computer interfaces and walled-off areas of the internet. As the internet turns 50, the technology is only picking up steam and continuing to reinvent many aspects of our lives, from the way we do business, and the way we find dates and jobs, to the way we run for political office. The internet was born when the first Arpanet link was established between the University of California, Los Angeles and the Stanford Research Institute at 22:30 hours on October 29, 1969. UCLA professor Leonard Kleinrock
  12. tao

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    At a recent workshop on cybersecurity at Ditchley House sponsored by the Ditchley Foundation in the U.K., a primary topic of consideration was how to preserve the freedom and openness of the Internet while protecting against the harmful behaviors that have emerged in this global medium. That this is a significant challenge cannot be overstated. The bad behaviors range from social network bullying and misinformation to email spam, distributed denial of service attacks, direct cyberattacks against infrastructure, malware propagation, identity theft, and a host of other ills requiring a wide rang
  13. If you want to use the internet and you don’t want the National Security Agency to see what you’re doing, you basically only need one tool: Tor, a network that anonymizes web traffic by bouncing it between servers. The NSA has been working on ways to get around "the Tor problem" for years without much success. "It should hardly be surprising that our intelligence agencies seek ways to counteract targets’ use of technologies to hide their communications," the agency toldBusinessWeek. The original funding for this thorn in the NSA’s side actually came from the US Department of Defense; the Naval
  14. Your smart home's fragile existence relies on a factor you can't control… the internet Without it, it's useless A less than useful smart display with no internet connection (Image credit: TechRadar) "Our door camera is offline… not sure why?" That's the message I received from my partner one afternoon. It was a Wednesday, I was at work, and so was she. Our smart home... was dead. For all the positive reviews, in-your-face marketing, consumer hype, and billions of dollars driven into its R&D, the sm
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