Current Events and Links
See more recent articles: After January 1, 2013
4 Best Smartphones of 2012
Dec. 26, 2012 -
Samsung's Galaxy S3 was the most popular smartphone of 2012, followed by Apple's iPhone 5, Google's Nexus 3, and Nokia's Lumina 920.
According to an International Data Corporation report, more than three times as many smartphones were shipped than PCs in the 3rd quarter of
the year. In the 4th quarter, sales are expected to reach 224.5 million units, which will be almost 40% higher than the same period last year.
- Source: The News Tribe
US and UK refuse to sign UN's communications treaty
Dec. 14, 2012 - Meeting in Dubai, the UN's International Telecommunication Union (ITU) had hoped to get general agreement
on a revised communications treaty [last revised 24 years ago], but many representatives said they would need to consult with their
governments first. The US, Canada, Australia and UK refused to sign it.
The treaty would have expanded the ITU's jurisdiction over the Internet, created pay-per-use tolls, heightened surveillance and
monitoring regulations, and given nation states increased control over the Internet.
- Source: BBC and...
Exclusive: ITU 'failed,' says former policy chief - C/Net
United Nations Plan To Seize Control Of The Internet
Nov. 28, 2012 - Next week at a conference in Dubai, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) will begin two weeks of discussions
on how to control the Internet. The Wall Street Journal warns that many of the proposals being brought to the conference will threaten the smooth
and open operation of the Internet. Many representatives would like to charge or tax the use of the Internet, and authoritarian governments would
like to be able to control its content.
- The Internet is made up of 40,000 networks that interconnect among 425,000 global routes, cheaply and efficiently delivering
messages and other digital content among more than two billion people around the world, with some 500,000 new users a day.
- Source: We Stand With Israel
- International Telecommunication Union - Wikipedia
Stop worrying, and embrace RFID
Nov. 23, 2012 - Radio-frequency identification (RFID) is already being used in a wide variety of ways, including pet identification,
product identification (companies like Walmart) and authentication and tracking (like the Department of Defense). Some people are resistive
to the technology because of religious or privacy concerns, like the recent case of a student who refused to wear a school identification badge
with a chip in it. The school wanted to use the badges so they can track movement on campus for funding and truancy purposes. The case is in
litigation now, but the author of this article suggests that people should not resist this technology. After all, he says, "smartphones and tablets
are more susceptible to nefarious use."
- Source: Extreme Tech
Now Big Brother is REALLY watching you
Nov. 20, 2012 - The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), together with Carnegie-Mellon University and some 14
other research organizations are developing “an artificial intelligence (AI) system that can watch and predict what a person will likely do
in the future.”
The system, called “Mind’s Eye,” will use security cameras to monitor a scene in real time and alert human operators if it detects illicit activity.
- The program would be sophisticated enough to determine if, for example, a person was setting down a bag in an airport because
he is sitting next to it or that person has left the bag all together.
Part of the process uses software called PetaVision that uses facial recognition, body shape, color, texture, and how they move to identify people.
The system employs an IBM “roadrunner” supercomputer. This computer runs at a quadrillion (a million billion) mathematical operations every second.
- Source: Steve Elwart - WND
New Supercomputer Could be World's Fastest
Oct. 31, 2012 - Titan, a new computer from Cray, will be used at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee. It may prove itself
faster than the IBM Sequoia. It is capable of operating at more than 20,000 trillion calculations each second (20 petaflops).
Twenty petaflops is [the number] 20 followed by 15 zeros.
- That is roughly equivalent to each of the world’s seven billion people being able to carry out
three million calculations per second, according to ORNL. Titan also has more than 700 terabytes of memory.
- Source: Voice of America
- ‘Titan’ Supercomputer Could be World’s Most Powerful - Wired
- Update: Nov. 15, 2012 -
Oak Ridge’s Titan supercomputer is world’s fastest - Washington Post
The Future, as Imagined by Google
Oct. 19, 2012 - Eric E. Schmidt, executive chairman of Google, told a company sales conference that the future will give
a person an improved life style.
Ingested devices will alert his doctor if something is wrong. People who never been connected to the Internet will suddenly go from nearly no
information to all the world’s information with one hand-held device.
- His bed will wake him up when he cycles out of R.E.M. sleep. A driverless car will take him to work. Returning phone calls, scheduling
events and other routine tasks will be taken care of by devices using artificial intelligence.
- Source: NY Times
NASA Lands Rover on Mars
Aug. 6, 2012 -
Some black and white photos have already been received from the site, and a stream of color pictures will follow.
- Mission controllers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory erupted in cheers after confirming that the one-ton rover called
Curiosity arrived on Mars after an eight-month journey.
- Source: Voice of America
- Curiousity Lands on Mars - NASA
NASA rover 'Curiosity' lands on Mars after plummet - Fox
- Mars Science Laboratory - NASA
These 20 Advanced Military Projects Will Change Your Life
July 27, 2012 - The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is the agency responsible for GPS, the internet and
stealth planes. Many of its current projects will have a great impact on our future life-style. Some of them are:
- Nanobots in the human body to monitor health
- A gene machine to mass produce gene therapies
- Devices that integrate completely with the nervous system
- Back-up systems for GPS navigation
- Computers that are seventy five times more energy efficient
- Ability to manufacture of nano-scale building materials
- Three-dimensional circuit boards
- Giga-pixel grade cameras
- Supercomputers that can be programmed by people with very little experience
- Source: Business Insider
Evidence of 'God particle' found
July 2, 2012 - Scientists working at the The Large Hadron Collider, say they have evidence that the so-called "God particle" exists, but they have not
actually observed it yet. In the scientific world the elusive particle is known as the Higgs boson.
- The phrase "God particle," coined by Nobel Prize-winning physicist Leon Lederman, is used by laymen, not physicists, more as
an explanation for how the wonders of the subatomic universe work than how it all started.
- Source: USA Today
- The 'God-Particle' and God - Dennis Prager
IBM's Supercomputer Puts America Back on Top
June 19, 2012 - For the past two years, Japan had the fastest supercomputer [Fujitsu's "K"], but the new installation of IBM's
Sequoia at the Department of Energy's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California returns the U.S. to the top spot. The Sequoia
will be used for simulations on nuclear weapons.
- It can calculate in one hour what otherwise would take 6.7 billion people using hand calculators 320 years to complete
if they worked non-stop, according to the BBC.
- Source: NewsMax
IBM's Sequoia Is World's Fastest Supercomputer - Information Week
How many servers does Google have? - Estimate they will have 2 million by end of year - Google
The Social Network Gospel
June 12, 2012 - There is a revival of Bible knowledge because of new technologies. It is reminiscent of the spread of God's Word
after the invention of the printing press! Robert C. Crosby writes:
The physical roads of the Roman Empire that connected people throughout the then-known world, made the spread of the Gospel possible. Today
the Internet, the smartphone, the tablet, and social media are the "new Roman roads" that connect millions of homes and individuals with the
ability to engage others with the teaching of the Bible.
- Not only do billions around the world now have access to the Bible online, and not only are many of them actually reading it,
they're also actively engaging with the Word of God—and with one another....
- Source: Christian Post
Credit Cards, An Endangered Species
May 4, 2012 - A new feature of smart phones, called near field communications (NFC), will eventually replace most credit cards.
This technology enables rapid point-of-sale payment directly from one's phone to the vendor. The system is in use already and growing
The smart phone could eventually replace the need for cash, checks or credit cards, and will provide real-time feedback on account and payment information.
- In locations in Africa, Asia and Latin America, money is often stored in a mobile account and transferred to another one during a
purchase by bringing the buyer’s and seller’s cell phones into close proximity.
- Source: The Daily Reckoning
Facebook IPO to make Zuckerberg richer than Ballmer
May 4, 2012 - Facebook's 27-year-old founder, Mark Zuckerberg, will be worth $17.6 billion once the company's stock
has gone public.
- Source: WND
Cracks in the wall: Will China's Great Firewall backfire?
May 2, 2012 - China exerts great control over its citizen's use of the Internet. All international Internet traffic goes through a few
gateways that China can monitor. Sites that they think are undesirable, like YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook are blocked. Google Drive's new cloud
storage will also apparently be blocked.
The isolation is good for the Beijing government and for local businesses that don't have to compete with Internet competitors, but Chinese
companies may have difficulty functioning overseas because of the restrictions.
- Source: BBC
- Google Drive to offer free storage in the cloud - BBC
Pastor Tells Worshipers to Turn ON Cellphones
Mar. 28, 2012 - Many pastors ask their congregations to turn their cellphones off during the services. But others, like Rev. Mark Solyst
of the English Lutheran Church in La Crosse, Wisconsin, actually asks listeners to use their phones to text their answers to challenging questions
he asks during the message.
- “Solyst poses challenging questions to worshipers, who can text their answers,” the Tribune reports. “The responses are then reviewed in a
PowerPoint presentation after the homily.”
- Source: NewsMax
- Ed. Note: In our recent visit to the very popular "Blue Letter Bible" offices we were told that Sunday Morning (during
worship services) was now their peak traffic time as congregants follow the pastors' messages on their cellphones!
The CIA wants to spy on you through your TV: Agency director says it will 'transform' surveillance
Mar. 18, 2012 - In a Wired's 'Danger Room' blog CIA Director David Petraeus says that new inexpensive technology will make it
feasible to connect the Internet not only to computers, phones, and televisions, but to an endless variety of devices like cameras, doorbells,
kitchen appliances, etc.
- Petraeus says that web-connected gadgets will 'transform' the art of spying - allowing spies to monitor people automatically
without planting bugs, breaking and entering or even donning a tuxedo to infiltrate a dinner party.
- Source: Daily Mail
- CIA Chief: We’ll Spy on You Through Your Dishwasher - - Danger Room - Wired News
Apple Cements Tablet Market Lead with New IPad
Mar. 16, ,2012 -
- The new iPad ... has faster chips, fourth-generation wireless, a sharper display and a better camera, making it harder for
competitors like Samsung's Galaxy, which also lack Apple's range of apps and content, to catch up.
- Source: NewsMax
products, presumably to enhance their service to users. There is debate about the legality of it, and whether or not it is a problem to users. The
article gives some suggestions of what individuals can do if they are concerned about the new policies.
- Source: Wired WebMonkey
- Tor Project - Free Software that protects your privacy
Wikipedia blackout to oppose censorship!
Jan. 18, 2011 - Imagine a World Without Free Knowledge
Wikipedia, Google, and many other information sites are trying to raise awareness about new bills in Congress that would
seriously limit their ability to serve the public. Wikipedia posted this on their home page today:
- For over a decade, we have spent millions of hours building the largest encyclopedia in human history. Right now, the U.S.
Congress is considering legislation that could fatally damage the free and open Internet.
- Source: Wikipedia
- Editor's note: Some evil things certainly should be censored, and no fair-minded person supports piracy of movies,
books and music, but critics of these bills argue that they are too broad and could be used to block the truth and even lead to
- Learn More: SOPA and PIPA - Wikipedia
- Sign Online Petition - Google
- Video: Protect IP/ SOPA Breaks the Internet - Fight for the Future
- Hackers retaliate over Megaupload website shutdown - BBC
The 12 Coolest Things We Saw at the Consumer Electronics Show
Jan. 16, 2012 - The annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas introduced another dazzling array of new products.
Time Magazine's writers picked twelve of the best - Laptops, tablets, smart phones, and more:
- Samsung Galaxy Notebook
- Dell XPS 13 Ultrabook
- Toshiba Excite X10
- Intel Smartphone Reference Design (For developers)
- Samsung Series 9 Notebook
- Nokia Lumia 900
- Eye-Controlled Computing
- Motorola Droid Razr MAXX
- Windows 8 Tablet/Laptop Hybrids
- OnLive Desktop
- 3D Body-Mapping
- Asus MeMo Tablet
- Source: TIME
Iran's strict cyber regulations lay groundwork for 'halal' network
Jan. 11, 2011 - Iran may institute its own country's "Intranet," which will be cut off from the rest of the world's Internet.
- Source: Fox
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