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The Internet: A Monopoly for Facebook & Google or What!
What is novel in this ACCE October/November issue !!
Five Dossiers incorporating highlights of the hottest trending topics nowadays.
The first deals with "Internet Monopoly"; The second speaks of "Cryptocurrencies Boom"; The third sheds the light on the ways the "Brain" interconnects with the "Computer"; The fourth emphasizes the "Laser & Electronic Weapons"; and The fifth tackles the Metals Industry in the making of the "Batteries of the Future"

Google & Facebook Are ’Surveillance States’ and Risk more Regulation, Former Facebook Executive Says

Now acting as Social Capital CEO, Chamath Palihapitiya, once an Executive at Facebook, says Facebook and Google are like "surveillance states" and are inviting a government crackdown. Palihapitiya is now bullish on Amazon and thinks it will have a longer runway before the government tries to intervene. "Amazon is a microscopic portion of global consumption today, so ultimately I think it has more room to grow before it invites regulatory overview," Palihapitiya says. "On the other hand, Facebook and Google effectively are surveillance states. And they have so much personal, private information about so many citizens of so many countries." Google has already had a tussle with regulators in Europe, after the company was slapped with a record fine in one investigation. "It’s already beginning," Palihapitiya points out. "Because it is part and parcel to them realizing that there is too much power unbounded." He notes that many big technology companies have seen their stocks soar, making it tempting to take gains. Palihapitiya has added "I think investors should reframe the way they think about the long-term trajectories of the companies. For instance, Amazon is competing against Wal-Mart, which has acquired e-commerce companies like Jet.com and Bonobos. But with tools like Alexa, robots and cloud, Amazon’s technology could lead it to victory over "laggard competitors," Palihapitiya argues.
Google Threatens to Shut down "Free Speech" Social Site Gab
Search engine giant Google and other tech giants platforms have threatened to shut down free-speech social media site Gab in the name of fighting hate speech. Gab, a social media platform known as a free speech oasis, was just recently ordered to
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The Cryptocurrency Argument:
Its Effect on Trade, Economies and Countries’ Financial Stability
The birth of cryptocurrency, or the money of the future!!, goes back to early 2009, with Bitcoin emerging as a side product of digital cash, a new electronic cash system that uses a peer-to-peer network to prevent double-spending, and becoming the first completely decentralized cryptocurrency with no server or central authority. If we take away all the noise around the cryptocurrency and reduce it to a simple definition, we find it to be just a limited entry in a database no one can change without fulfilling specific conditions, it is nothing but a digital asset designed to work as a medium of exchange using cryptography to secure the transactions and to control the creation of additional units of the currency. Cryptocurrencies are classified as a subset of digital currencies as well as a subset of alternative currencies and virtual currencies. Today, cryptocurrencies have become a global phenomenon known to most people with hundreds of cryptocurrencies around. While still somehow geeky and not understood by most people, banks, governments and many companies are aware of its importance. Back in 2016, we hardly find a major bank, a big accounting firm, a prominent software company or a government that did not research cryptocurrencies, publish a paper about or start a so-called blockchain-project. However, as nobody can predict the future course of cryptocurrencies that will dominate the mature marketplace, analysts can only speculate that markets will mature into forms that solve real business problems in ways that are cheap and robust and that cannot be solved by other technologies.

China Plans to Restrict All Bitcoin Domestic Exchanges
China accounts for about 23% of bitcoin trades and is also home to many of the worlds biggest bitcoin miners, who use vast amounts of computing power to confirm transactions in the digital currency. However, a recent news release has reported that China is planning to ban trading of bitcoin and other virtual currencies on domestic exchanges, dealing another blow to the $150 billion cryptocurrency market after the country outlawed initial coin offerings earlier. The ban will only apply to trading of cryptocurrencies on exchanges, according to people familiar with the matter, who have asked not to be named because the information is private. Authorities do not have plans to stop over-the-counter transactions, the people say. Chinas central bank said it could not immediately comment. Bitcoin slumped after news reported Chinas plans, capping the virtual currencys biggest
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Brain-Computer Interface Technologies:
Have We Quite Approached to Making a Computer Understands What We Are Thinking About
As the power of modern computers grows alongside our understanding of the human brain, we move ever closer to making some pretty spectacular science fiction into reality. As the proliferation of technology dramatically infiltrates all aspects of modern life, in many ways the world is becoming so dynamic and complex that technological capabilities are overwhelming human capabilities to optimally interact with and leverage those technologies. Fortunately, these technological advancements have also driven an explosion of neuroscience research over the past several decades, presenting engineers with a remarkable opportunity to design and develop flexible and adaptive brain-based neurotechnologies that integrate with and capitalize on human capabilities and limitations to improve human-system interactions. Major forerunners of this conception are brain-computer interfaces (BCIs), which to this point have been largely focused on improving the quality of life for particular clinical populations and include, for example, applications for advanced communications with paralyzed or locked in patients as well as the direct control of prostheses and wheelchairs. Near-term applications are envisioned that are primarily task oriented and are targeted to avoid the most difficult obstacles to development. In the farther term, a holistic approach to BCIs will enable a broad range of task-oriented and opportunistic apps by leveraging pervasive technologies and advanced analytical approaches to sense and merge critical brain, behavioral, task, and environmental information. Communications and other apps that are envisioned to be broadly impacted by BCIs are highlighted; however, these represent just a small sample of the potential of these technologies.
Magnetic Fields Can Remotely Control Brain Cells in Mice
Using magnetic fields, scientists can activate specific brain cells in mice and make them run, spin and freeze, new research shows. This could help scientists pinpoint the specific brain circuits animals use for certain behaviors, which could in turn help scientists pinpoint with greater accuracy which brain areas are involved in those same behaviors in humans, said Arnd Pralle, a biophysicist at the University at Buffalo in New York. The main goal is to develop tools that can help scientists study the brains of laboratory animals to see how they encode emotions and behaviors, Pralle told Live Science. "We can translate a lot of that to human brains," he added. Scientists have used implanted electrodes to control the movement and thoughts of monkeys,
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Laser & Electronic Weapons:
Infiltrate the Realm of Battlefields

A laser weapon is more precise than a bullet; it is not a niche weapon system like some other weapons that US military is using throughout where it is only good against air contacts, or it is only good against surface targets, or it is only good against ground-based targets. It is a very versatile weapon, which can be used against a variety of targets. The laser weapon has the advantage of moving at the speed of light, an advantage that not other weapon ever invented comes even close to matching. For comparison, that is 50,000 times the speed of an incoming Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM). "It is extremely powerful, throwing massive amounts of photons at an incoming object," says one laser weapons system officer. "We do not worry about wind, we do not worry about range, we do not worry about anything else. we are able to engage the targets at the speed of light," he introduced the weapon. So, imagine we have been fired by such a weapon; it would be more catastrophic than the worse catastrophe.

Drones & Laser Weapons Face to Face
US army has recently tested drone-killing lasers as threats are growing on the battlefields. Infantry-carrying Stryker vehicles mounted with the Mobile High Energy Laser, a 5 KW beam that scrambles the circuits of drones, took part in demonstrations at the Maneuver Fires Integration Experiment at Fort Sill in Oklahoma. The system includes radar detection and a camera to visually track aircraft on a screen, where an operator targets the drone with the laser. A hard kill will disable the drone mid-flight and send it crashing to the ground, the Army said. A soft kill occurs when the laser severs the communications link between the drone and its ground control station. we can send artillery after the ground control station, Lt. Col. Jeff Erts of the Fires Battle Lab at
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Metals Industry:
Invaluable in the Making of next-generation Batteries
As a matter of fact, metal industries are the indispensable part of an economy; they form the backbone of industrial development of any country. The world is transforming. Metals and mining are essential to global economic and social development and are connected to almost all industry value chains. As an inherently long-term investment, a long term perspective in the metal industry is crucial. By 2050, the world will be different, as will the way resources will be used. Rules are changing, social pressure to act more sustainably is growing, and technological advances are disrupting all sectors. This is an opportunity for the mining and metals community to define the role it can play to shape the agenda of the future and to embrace the transformations to come, as well as the business models and strategic priorities that will enable success. There are two opposing forces at play in the mining and metal sector: resource scarcity and product innovation. As resource deposits dwindle, costs increase, and capital needs across the industry rise accordingly, and prices rise. Eventually, there will come along a new product, technique, technology or shift in consumer tastes that will alter the metal and mining landscape. Battery demand will continue to drive the lithium, a soft silver-white metal, and cobalt markets, and forecasts are unified in their projections as overall demand for battery metals is expected to soar.
Cobalt Market: Sharp Rise in Price & Demand
A hard silvery-white magnetic metal, cobalt is the hottest commodity on the market right now. It is mainly deployed as a component of magnetic alloys and those designed for use at high temperatures. It is a metal that early investors are eyeing as a massive opportunity. After several years of an oversupplied market and weak cobalt prices, many market commentators are expecting year 2017 and on to be big years for cobalt. The hype is understandable. Prices have risen sharply this year with market price increasing, surging 150% as tech giants battle for supply. Cobalt is a metal that few investors know much about it is critical to the electric vehicle (EV) revolution because it makes up some 35% of the lithium-ion battery mix. That is 30% of batteries that are the backbone of EVs, EVs that are now mainstream. To meet demand for EVs, billion-dollar battery gigafactories have been built and continue to be built. Tesla launched a $5-billion battery gigafactory in Nevada. By the end of 2017, it will have doubled the entire global battery production capacity. By next year, it will be producing more batteries than the rest of the world combined. Teslas run on cobalt alone will be phenomenal, and that ignores all those competing for the super metal. Consumer electronics are contributing to the demand and resulting shortage of supply, where supply is key. Supply is already in deficit, and that is before the anticipated 500% increase in demand between now and 2020. The battery industry already uses 42% of global cobalt production, while the rest is used in industrial and military apps; all competing for supply. However, strong demand for cobalt in Lithium-ion batteries is set to continue. In addition, cobalt demand is forecast to grow strongly in other key end-use apps such as high performance alloys, tool materials and catalysts. Cobalt is a metal that is critical to the future stock price of everything from Google, Apple,
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