This Russian cottage is heated for free with Bitcoin mining

November 7, 2017 by  
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In the last month, Bitcoin — the biggest and best-known cryptocurrency — rose in value by 480 percent . The sudden spike spurred more people to invest in the currency, while others dedicate computers to the task of mining bitcoins . Siberian entrepreneurs Ilya Frolov and Dmitry Tolmachyov are engaged in the latter – and they’ve found that they’re able to heat a 20-square-meter with two machines while pocketing $430 per month. Bitcoin transactions require a lot of computer processing power, which in turn produces a substantial amount of heat . Most “miners” just release that heat into the atmosphere — but not Frolov and Tolmachyov. The Russian entrepreneurs built a cottage in the Siberian town of Irkutsk that is heated by two Bitcoin mining machines. Each month, the men make about $430. And, they pay $0 to heat the 20-square-meter abode. In the video above, Quartz details how this is possible. Related: Power-hungry Bitcoin could consume as much energy as Denmark by 2020 Because Bitcoin is relatively new, it is still considered a highly volatile investment . However it has provided gains exceeding those of any other currency in every year but one since 2010, according to The Independent. The process of “mining” Bitcoin determines which transactions are valid, and which should be added to the blockchain — an ever-expanding ledger that holds the transaction history of all Bitcoins in circulation. The blockchain lives in the thousands of machines on the bitcoin network. Mining also ensures the system cannot be gamed, thus, making the cryptocurrency more secure than the US dollar. Every ten minutes, mining computers collect a few hundred pending Bitcoin transactions and turn them into a mathematical puzzle. The first miner to find the solution declares it to others on the network. The other miners then check whether the sender of the funds has the right to spend the money. If enough approval is granted, the block is cryptographically added to the ledger and the miners move onto the next set of transactions. A miner who finds the solution gets 12.5 Bitcoins as a reward, but only after another 99 blocks have been added to the ledger. This gives all miners an incentive to participate in the system and validate transactions. It also provides protection; to double-spend a Bitcoin, digital bank robbers would have to rewrite the blockchain — that would require more than half of the network’s puzzle-solving capacity! Via Quartz , The Economist , The Independent Images via YouTube , Pixabay

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This Russian cottage is heated for free with Bitcoin mining

Hackers just attacked a major public transit system and demanded $70,000

November 29, 2016 by  
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On Friday, San Francisco’s Municipal Transportation System was attacked by hackers who left a message reading “You Hacked, ALL Data Encrypted” on the system’s computers throughout the city. Their demand? A payment of $70,000 from the city – or they would release the system’s data on the web. So-called “ransomware” attacks have become more and more common in recent years. Hackers will encrypt a computer’s data, demanding a payment from the user in an untraceable cryptocurrency like Bitcoin with threats to permanently erase the computer’s files if their conditions aren’t met. Antivirus and security professionals recommend taking the exact approach that Muni seems to be embracing: keep frequent backups of your system and refuse to pay. Related: Lava Mae’s big blue bus brings mobile showers to San Francisco’s homeless population As of Sunday, the system appeared to be restored and gates to Muni stations were once again operational. The agency is declining to address further questions about the hack or how its systems were restored, saying simply that the situation is subject to an ongoing investigation, but that “Neither customer privacy nor transaction information were compromised.” The incident did result in one unexpected benefit for passengers: rides on the trains were free throughout the day on Saturday. Via Mashable Images via Wikimedia Commons ( 1 , 2 , 3 )

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Hackers just attacked a major public transit system and demanded $70,000

Scientists may have finally found a cure for the common cold

November 29, 2016 by  
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Could the common cold soon be a thing of the past? Scientists have created a breakthrough nasal spray that could block the virus as it tries to enter through the nose, where more than 90% of pathogens get in. The vaccine is called SynGEM , and it treats Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV), one of three viruses that cause 80% of common colds. According to Mucosis , the Dutch company developing SynGEM, around 200,000 people die from RSV each year. RSV is especially dangerous for the elderly and children . The vaccine works for rats and mice, and researchers are beginning human trials at Imperial College London . Researchers say if the humans currently testing SynGEM develop antibodies, the scientists will be able to know the vaccine is truly working. Related: 44-year-old British man could be first to receive HIV cure Imperial College London professor of experimental medicine Peter Openshaw said in a statement, “We will first test whether the vaccine induces the right sort of immunity in humans, and, if it does, then test whether it will prevent infection in adult volunteers. Previous research has shown that boosting immunity in the nose and lungs may be the best way of increasing defense against RSV, blocking the virus from gaining entry to the body.” Openshaw has been researching colds and the flu for 30 years, and according to The Independent is hopeful the vaccine could be a major breakthrough. The second trial phase, which could occur in 2017, will test the vaccine in even more people. 54 adults would receive SynGEM in the second trial and 54 would receive a placebo. Via The Independent Images via anna gutermuth on Flickr and Claus Rebler on Flickr

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Scientists may have finally found a cure for the common cold

Chinese researchers hack a Tesla from 12 miles away

September 21, 2016 by  
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When a new high-tech product or piece of software hits the market, the inevitable next thing is that hackers try to find its weak points. Although Tesla likely employed its own hackers in developing the Autopilot program on its Model S electric cars, the released version (and its subsequent updates) are anything but foolproof. A Chinese research team became the latest group to successfully hack a Tesla but, unlike their predecessors who usually sit in the back seat or just outside the car, they were able to take control of the vehicle from a staggering 12 miles away. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c1XyhReNcHY Keen Security Lab researchers Samuel LV, Sen Nie, Ling Liu and Wen Lu successfully hacked a Tesla Model S P85 and Model 75D from 12 miles away, and they think they could perform the same remote attack on other models. The team targeted the car’s controller area network, or Can bus, the “brain” that controls all sorts of functions on nearly every modern car. The team managed to gain control over the car’s brakes, door locks, and other electronic features that a malicious hacker could use to cause serious damage, or even a fatal collision. Related: Tesla sues oil exec for allegedly impersonating Elon Musk to get trade secrets Additionally, the security researchers gained control of features that could be used to simply annoy a driver incessantly. From 12 miles away, the team could move the seats back and forth, engage the indicator lights, control wing mirrors and windshield wipers. They could even open the sunroof and trunk, while the car was driving as well as parked. The Keen team notified Tesla about the vulnerability before it hit the headlines. Tesla was quick to develop a software patch to protect against this type of hack attack, and has already deployed it over-the-air to affected models. “The issue demonstrated is only triggered when the web browser is used, and also required the car to be physically near to and connected to a malicious Wi-Fi hotspot,” said the company in a statement. “Our realistic estimate is that the risk to our customers was very low, but this did not stop us from responding quickly.” Via Gizmodo Lead image via Tesla Motors  

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Chinese researchers hack a Tesla from 12 miles away

INFOGRAPHIC: How a smart electric grid could reduce emissions by 58 percent in the US

December 7, 2015 by  
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Increasing infrastructure spending has been in the news a lot lately, and that’s good, because the electric grid in the United States suffers from multiple issues, including inefficiency and high cost. Smart technologies have been touted to solve these and other operational difficulties. Yet, a shift can bring its own problems as well. Mixing power delivery with digital technologies opens up the possibility of disruptions caused by malicious entities like hackers. But a smart – and safe – electric grid could help reduce emissions by 58% and help save nearly 50 billion dollars every year. Read the rest of INFOGRAPHIC: How a smart electric grid could reduce emissions by 58 percent in the US

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INFOGRAPHIC: How a smart electric grid could reduce emissions by 58 percent in the US

The Mebotics Microfactory is a One-Stop Shop for Fabricating Anything

September 12, 2013 by  
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3D printing technology holds the amazing potential to change the way we make things – however most 3D printers are limited to creating objects out of plastic. Enter the Mebotics Microfactory , which it claims to be the world’s first machine shop in a box. The new Microfactory lets you 3D print to your heart’s content, but it also includes a mill to carve and etch different types of materials – including wood, metal, and printed circuit boards – into any shape you please. Read the rest of The Mebotics Microfactory is a One-Stop Shop for Fabricating Anything Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “Making” , 3d printer , 3D printing , Artisans’ Asylum , boston , CNC router , Creating Anything You Want , Creative Technology , Dremel , green tech , Hackers , hacking , linux , Maker Movement , makers , Making Objects , Mebotics , Microfactory , Nerds , News , Object Fabrication , PCB , printed circuit boards , Self-Built Tech , Smart Gadgets , Technology , wi-fi        

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The Mebotics Microfactory is a One-Stop Shop for Fabricating Anything

Tokyo Hackerspace Sets Up DIY Radiation Monitors at Japan’s Fukushima Plant

April 27, 2011 by  
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As a result of last month’s earthquakes and tsunami, many areas of Japan have been left without even the most basic necessities such and shelter and power. To begin to offer assistance to the thousands of victims who are facing a long road ahead, Tokyo Hackerspace has started to develop ten projects with other hackers worldwide.

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Tokyo Hackerspace Sets Up DIY Radiation Monitors at Japan’s Fukushima Plant

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