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Elon Musk promised Twitter employees generous compensation in the form of shares, but fired those who criticized him publicly.
November 15, 2022

The urgency of Twitter's cuts was initially thought to be due to Elon Musk's desire to avoid prior period compensation in the form of company stock. The new business owner later clarified that all due payments would be made. He now adds that even as a private company, Twitter will continue to reward its employees with equity stakes.

Musk borrowed a similar employee incentive model from SpaceX, which he also leads, as CNBC explains. Having remained private for more than twenty years of its existence, the aerospace company SpaceX regularly trades in its shares, allowing employees to receive additional income from such transactions. SpaceX share rewards are paid out twice a year, on May 15 and November 15.

In a letter to Twitter staff, the billionaire also promised to similarly reward the "exceptional merit" of the company's employees with the "exceptional amount" of shares they can receive.

At the same time, the billionaire, who advocates “absolute freedom of speech,” does not hesitate to get rid of Twitter employees who publicly criticize his actions. The open correspondence of one of the Twitter engineers, who for eight years has been developing an application for the Android operating system, has become public. Eric Frohnhoefer, as the name of the specialist, tried to convey to Musk the information that Twitter is too slow on this platform. On Monday, it became known that Musk fired this engineer, although the full rationale for such actions was not disclosed.

Another tech guy, Ben Leib, who has been with the company for over a decade, had the temerity to comment on Elon Musk's lack of understanding on certain technical issues. His new owner of the company eventually fired him last Sunday as well. The lack of full-fledged communication between the new management and the surviving Twitter team against the backdrop of abrupt and inconsistent changes causes misunderstanding and confusion among the staff, as former and current employees of the company admit.





Elon Musk admitted that he works tirelessly - seven days a week.
November 14, 2022

Elon Musk's plans to speak at the G20 summit, which is taking place these days in Indonesia, were known a few months before the start of the event, but in fact everything was limited to a video conference in which the billionaire took part, being in some room without electricity, surrounded by candles . The richest man in the world admitted that he works from morning to evening seven days a week.

Perhaps these revelations of an entrepreneur and owner of several large companies in various sectors of the economy at once were a kind of response to investors' concerns about Elon Musk's ability to effectively manage Tesla and SpaceX after buying Twitter, since the new asset objectively required the billionaire to spend not only money, but and time. He even stayed at Twitter headquarters last Friday, even though it was a holiday in the US, after thanking the company's overtime employees and inviting them to exchange views on their legal day off to his office.

“I have too much work, that’s for sure,” Elon Musk began his speech. Later, he even evaded answering the question of the ability of the latest geopolitical problems to affect the supply chain of materials and components, returning to discussing his employment. At the same time, he wished his imitators in Asia to share their own idea of ​​​​the personality of Elon Musk and the real character traits and lifestyle of a billionaire. At least, as Musk admitted, few people imagine what tests he puts himself under.

The conversation turned to the topic of reforms on Twitter by itself, and then the newly minted head of the company said that he would like to give content creators the opportunity to publish long videos on the pages of this social network and thereby earn a living. Elon Musk did not comment on the actively discussed possibility of Tesla entering into a deal with the Indonesian authorities for access to nickel reserves, but acknowledged that the country occupies an important place in the supply chain of components for electric vehicles. Along the way, he said that the aerospace company SpaceX over time, it makes sense to think about building launch pads for rocket technology around the world.

Speaking by candlelight due to the lack of electricity at his place of residence, Elon Musk expressed confidence in the ability of mankind to switch to completely renewable energy sources. The whole question is how long it will take, as the billionaire explained. Space exploration is also a priority for humanity, according to the head of SpaceX, because it "allows us to understand the nature of the universe and our place in it." Musk added that it would be incredibly interesting to find traces of the existence of alien civilizations or the ruins of ancient civilizations that existed millions of years ago.





Japan has developed the technology of ideal blue quantum dots - they are illuminated with ultraviolet light.
November 14, 2022

Quantum dot (QD) displays are very economical, provide high brightness and high-quality color reproduction. Creating a full-color image requires the ability to display red, green, and blue, but the latter is the most problematic. However, a new method developed by the University of Tokyo will help develop energy-efficient displays with high-quality blue.

Any user, if desired, can see the pixels on the display. However, they are not the smallest image elements - each consists of at least three sub-pixels - red, green and blue. The different intensity of the glow of these subpixels allows you to display billions of shades of colors. Sub-pixel technology has evolved since the advent of color television, with numerous options now available to manufacturers. One of the most advanced LED elements with quantum dots is QD-LED.

Displays based on this technology already exist, but the technology cannot yet be considered mature enough, especially in terms of producing high-quality blue sub-pixels, which are the most important and main three, since it is blue light that is used to form green as well. Because of this, it is critical that the physical parameters of blue quantum dots can be precisely controlled.

As a result, the blue elements are expensive to manufacture and have a rather complex structure, and their quality is a critical factor for any display made using this technology. However, the University of Tokyo seems to have a solution. According to project lead professor Eiichi Nakamura, the previous technologies were very different - the production of blue sub-pixels required a fairly large amount of chemicals that had to be processed through a series of processes in order to get the working material.

The new strategy calls for the team to use "knowledge of self-organizing chemistry to precisely control molecules before they form the desired structures." Nakamura suggested thinking of it like building a building out of bricks instead of carving it out of stone—you can be much more precise, design how you want, and the process is much more efficient and less expensive.

The process is made special by the use of ultraviolet illumination - quantum dots developed in Tokyo under its influence generate an almost reference blue color in accordance with the international standard BT.2020. This is possible due to the unique chemical composition of quantum dots, using a hybrid mixture of organic and inorganic components, including lead perovskite, malic acid and oleylamine, and only "self-organization" allows the formation of subpixels of the desired shape. According to scientists, the most difficult thing was to figure out that it was malic acid that plays a key role in this "chemical puzzle" - before that, they had to try to use a variety of components.

Among the tasks for forming the structure of blue subpixels was the need to track their shape - elements with a size of 2.4 nm, 190 times smaller than the wavelength they should emit, cannot be examined using conventional microscopes. To do this, they had to use the SMART-EM tool for "cinematic chemistry" created by the team.

In fact, the new instrumentation is a modified version of the electron microscope, optimized for video shooting, which allows you to track the dynamics - the blue quantum dot is "highly dynamic", so one shot will not be enough. Unfortunately for scientists and manufacturers, the blue sub-pixels are incapable of long-term survival. Now the task of researchers is to stabilize them with the support of industry participants that produce monitors, televisions and other electronics.





Chinese SMIC continues to expand staff and increase capital expenditures despite sanctions.
November 14, 2022

SMIC remains the largest semiconductor contract manufacturer in China, and the US sanctions imposed in early October will affect its business to some extent, although management is not yet ready to assess the exact extent of the impact. But it speaks of the need to increase capital expenditures for the purchase of equipment and the company has no problems with the selection of qualified personnel.

DigiTimes shared the revelations of SMIC representatives. According to Zhao Haijun, one of the company's CEOs, the human resources situation is now at its best in SMIC's history as the pandemic has reduced employee turnover and university graduates have become more interested in finding a job in the semiconductor manufacturing industry. If last year the staff of SMIC totaled up to 16,000 people, then since the beginning of this year it has already exceeded 20,000 people.

SMIC, as the source explains, did not publicly comment on its success in mastering the process technology, which is comparable in its key characteristics to TSMC's 7nm technology, but experts say that the company is already working on mastering 5nm technology in its laboratories. One of SMIC's CEOs is Liang Mong Song, who had experience at TSMC and Samsung. He retains his current position despite US sanctions.

With its five divisions, SMIC intends to increase the number of monthly processed silicon wafers by 340,000 pieces per month over the next five or seven years. This year, the amount of capital expenditures has been increased from $5 to $6.6 billion, and this is not counting the funds allocated for the development of the enterprise in Tianjin. According to SMIC management, each facility is built with a 20-year lifespan in mind, and short-term demand issues should not stop the company. Currently, up to 60% of SMIC's revenue is provided by the segment of smartphones, consumer electronics and smart home devices, so the company feels the decline in demand in some of these areas quite sharply.

In the past quarter, SMIC managed to increase the number of 200 mm silicon wafers processed monthly by 32,000 pieces, but the equipment utilization rate has consistently decreased from 97.1% to 92.1%. At the same time, the demand for components for network equipment, the Internet of things and industrial automation increased core revenue by 20-30%. In the domestic market of China, the company began to receive a larger share of revenue than a year ago - 70% against 66.7%. This was facilitated by the expansion of US sanctions. Given this factor and the weakness of the global economy, SMIC management does not undertake to predict the timing of demand recovery, although three months ago it was confident that the situation would begin to improve from mid-2023.





Twitter hurriedly got rid of a large number of contractors.
November 14, 2022

One of the first steps taken by Twitter's new cost-cutting leadership was a massive staff cut that affected about half of the company's full-time employees. As it became known over the weekend, contractors were also seriously affected - according to some reports, Twitter refused the services of up to 80% of third-party specialists serving the company's infrastructure.

Platformer was the first to report this, naming the scale of the reduction. According to the source, almost 4,400 of Twitter's 5,500 contractors lost their jobs the day before, and many of them learned about this indirectly, faced with the inability to use the company's usual information resources and internal systems. CNBC representatives were able to confirm the fact of large-scale reductions, but this source has no idea about the exact number of laid-off contractors. Third parties were typically trusted by Twitter to moderate content or maintain hardware infrastructure such as server hardware.

Some of the downsized contractors worked in India, according to CNBC. At the same time, the company's staff members, who, due to the nature of their work, had to communicate with contractors, did not receive any notifications about the upcoming changes the day before. As we learned, in previous cuts, Twitter has lost all of its full-time employee relations specialists, so the remaining staff sometimes have to learn about changes in the work of the company from the news in the media.





Elon Musk will try to return blue ticks to Twitter by the end of this week.
November 14, 2022

Elon Musk's first steps as the owner and head of the social network Twitter may have seemed chaotic, and the reforms related to the issuance of so-called "blue checkmarks" to users, indicating that the account has been verified, have caused the most questions. After a wave of abuse, these tags disappeared from the pages of Twitter, but the company's management promises to return them soon.

Last Friday, Twitter stopped subscribing to the Twitter Blue service, which automatically gave users the right to consider their account verified, and used $8 per month subscription payments as a means of verification. A wave of abuses in the first hours of issuing "blue checks" under the new rules led to the fact that "imposters" began to disseminate false information on behalf of large companies that could damage their business reputation. Even Tesla, led by the same Elon Musk, suffered. As a result, the issuance of such labels, indicating account verification, had to be stopped.

The head of Twitter on the pages of this social network on Saturday said that the Twitter Blue subscription, it is quite possible, will be again provided to users by the end of the week, which at the time of writing this material has already begun. For Twitter, the ability to charge subscription fees is of strategic importance, as Elon Musk wants to significantly reduce the social network's dependence on advertiser money.

News has also surfaced regarding the fate of the "grey checkmarks" that Twitter has attempted to issue to accounts of organizations and prominent individuals without charging a subscription fee. Without going into details, Elon Musk said yesterday that Twitter will allow organizations to independently identify those accounts that are somehow associated with them.

Last Sunday, it also became known that the new leadership of Twitter laid off 4,400 of the 5,500 employees who worked for the company in the status of contractors, and content moderation and infrastructure maintenance will suffer the most from this. So far, information about these reductions has not been confirmed in official sources.





Large investors are disappointed in cryptocurrency.
November 13, 2022

Institutional investors are becoming increasingly disillusioned with digital assets. The sudden collapse of the FTX crypto exchange may have completely undermined the prospects for including cryptocurrencies in the portfolios of large investors.

While there are enough crypto enthusiasts left in the industry, many professional investors say the case for cryptocurrencies as a portfolio diversification tool or digital gold has been debunked. In their opinion, investing in cryptocurrencies is associated with the probability of too large losses, and the market structure itself is too risky.

“It became clear that there would be no place for cryptocurrencies in institutional asset allocation. There was a period when they were seen as a potential asset class that every investor should have in their strategic asset allocation, but that is now out of the question,” said Hani Redha, portfolio manager at London-based Pinebridge Investments.

Recent scandals in the cryptocurrency market have virtually erased the notion of bitcoin as a reliable investment option. However, no recent event, whether it was the collapse of the Terra cryptocurrency or the bankruptcy of the cryptocurrency lender Celsius, has been as devastating to the industry as the news that even a serious player like the FTX crypto exchange may be insolvent.

“The collapse of FTX calls into question the viability of the cryptocurrency ecosystem,” said Salman Ahmed, chief investment strategist at Fidelity International, which manages $646 billion in assets.

A year ago, when the price of bitcoin rose above $67 thousand per coin, some investors and analysts predicted further stable growth. There were forecasts according to which, by the end of this year, the bitcoin exchange rate should have been in the region of $75-$100 thousand. Now, investors have become more restrained in their estimates, and bitcoin at the time of this writing was trading at $16,656 per coin.

Note that in the past, bitcoin managed to overcome hard times and some investors believe that the cryptocurrency market is stabilizing. However, Mark Dawding, investment director of BlueBay Asset Management, believes that the arguments about the ability of bitcoin to become a digital analogue of gold are not true. “It should be clear that an industry that produces nothing, burns money and offers tempting returns is doomed to fail,” Dowding said.





Binance Stops Accepting FTT Deposits from Bankrupt Crypto Exchange FTX.
November 13, 2022

Cryptocurrency exchange Binance has stopped accepting deposits of FTT tokens on its platform from its competitor FTX, which filed for bankruptcy on Friday. Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao made the announcement on Sunday, urging other competing exchanges to follow the example of his platform.

The already difficult situation for FTX deteriorated sharply when, some time after the announcement of the initiation of bankruptcy proceedings, the crypto exchange reported that unauthorized access was detected, as a result of which its applications were infected with malicious code, and experts said hundreds of millions of dollars worth of assets disappeared. from the platform under "suspicious circumstances".

“(Binance) has discontinued FTT deposits to prevent the possibility of dubious additional revenue affecting the market. We will be monitoring the situation,” the head of Binance tweeted. He added in another tweet that FTT contract participants transferred all remaining $400 million worth of FTT tokens to other accounts to be unlocked in batches.

After the departure of Sam Bankman-Fried, the crypto exchange was headed by restructuring specialist John J. Ray III, who previously dealt with, among other things, the bankruptcy of energy company Enron.





Elon Musk thanks Twitter employees for working overtime.
November 13, 2022

New Twitter CEO Elon Musk sent out an email to the company's employees thanking them for their overtime work since he took over on October 28. He also invited employees from Twitter's headquarters in San Francisco to visit him to discuss issues related to the further development of the social network.

Earlier this week, Twitter suspended the sale of the $7.99-per-month Twitter Blue subscription to address a problem with fake accounts impersonating famous people and brands by buying a "blue check" to confirm user verification. When exactly this feature will be available again is still unknown.

A source at the company said the changes to the Twitter platform have been slower and more cautious in the past, as the platform has to take into account various factors such as user response, security, and revenue impact. The new, more experimental approach that Musk is taking has worried not only Twitter employees, but also advertisers and even the US Federal Trade Commission.

Twitter staff also said they would like more clarity on a number of issues, including those related to the ability to work remotely. Last week, Musk changed the company's work schedule by ending the "work from home forever" rule. Musk's letter to employees also does not provide complete clarity on this issue. The head of Twitter writes that “working remotely is fine if you can’t get to the office for reasonable reasons and work at an exceptional level.” At the same time, he emphasized that he firmly believes in the corporate spirit and efficiency of working from the office.





Chief Information Security Officer Leaves Twitter, Head of Sales Returns.
November 12, 2022

Lea Kissner, director of information security at Twitter, has joined the ranks of senior executives who have left the company. However, the head of sales Robin Wheeler decided to win back her previous decision to leave Twitter. Regulators are increasingly concerned about the future of the social network.

The day before, Ms. Kissner announced that she had decided to leave Twitter, although she did not name the reasons for this decision. She also stated that she was proud of her now former colleagues and the work they had done. To date, with the arrival of Elon Musk at the head of the company, the largest reductions have been in the engineering division, product development division, content creation division, as well as specialists in machine learning ethics and human rights.

Staff instability during the transition threatens Twitter with many difficulties, including problems from regulators. In response to a query from Dark Reading, a spokesperson for the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) said the agency is monitoring the company's developments with "deep concern" but will not allow non-compliance with the law or non-compliance with legitimate authorities. The platform is now under intense scrutiny by the FTC, which in May fined Twitter $150 million for abusing the personal data of users whose phone numbers and email addresses were used for targeted advertising.

But the chief sales manager at Twitter, Robin Wheeler, first decided to leave the company along with her colleagues, but then Elon Musk convinced her to stay. Since Musk's arrival, Ms. Wheeler has been Twitter's main liaison with the biggest advertisers.





Twitter canceled the distribution of gray checkmarks confirming the authenticity of the account.
November 10, 2022

Actively reforming the activity of the social network Twitter, its new owner Elon Musk is not afraid to make mistakes and then correct them. Launched the day before, the distribution of gray check "Official" labels was canceled by Wednesday evening, and the accounts that received them were again deprived of them. Twitter management made it clear that the gray checkmarks will return later, but will be distributed according to a different principle.

Esther Crawford, who is in charge of product development for Twitter, said yesterday that Twitter accounts will have to be divided into three types. Twitter Blue subscribers who are willing to pay $8 per month for a set of benefits will automatically receive blue checkmarks, replacing the previous verification process, but they will not be required to provide any personal data to verify their identity. A number of public figures, show business stars, companies and organizations will be provided with verification in the form of a gray checkmark and the status of "Official", and they will not need to pay for it. Finally, all other users will retain free access to the social network, but will not be verified in any way.

By Wednesday evening, as CNBC explains, the gray checkmarks that appeared on the morning of the same day from the names of the accounts of various media and organizations disappeared. At a meeting with advertisers, Elon Musk criticized such a system, saying that it simply divides users into two classes and does not solve a key problem. He later wrote that Twitter would be doing a lot of short-sighted things in the coming months. “We will leave what works and change what does not work,” the billionaire explained.

Esther Crawford added that gray checkmarks will return with the launch of the updated Twitter Blue service, but in the future they will be assigned mainly to accounts of government agencies and commercial organizations. According to a Twitter spokeswoman, there are “no more sacred cows” in this company, and Elon Musk is ready to try different things, some of them will lead to success, and others to failure. As Crawford added, "The challenge is to find a set of successful changes that will ensure long-term well-being and business development." Elon Musk also said on Wednesday that "the blue tick would be the best equalizer."





After the reforms of Elon Musk, Twitter will offer three types of accounts - official, with a purchased blue check mark and regular.
November 9, 2022

Esther Crawford, who is in charge of Twitter pilot products, explained this week that the new social network verification system will divide accounts into three types. Some will receive the Official label, the second will receive a blue check mark due to the paid Twitter Blue subscription, and the third will remain unverified. At the same time, Twitter Blue subscribers will not need to present documents to receive the coveted tick.

Previously, a free user verification procedure meant providing them with some personal data, such as a copy of a driver's license or information about a place of work, not to mention a banal mobile phone number. As the representative of the company explained, subscribers of the Twitter Blue service will not verify their identity in this way in order to receive a blue checkmark next to the account name in this social network. Earlier it was reported that the company will identify them by payment details, since Twitter Blue will have to pay $ 8 per month for a Twitter Blue subscription.

The Official label will be available to some of the already verified Twitter accounts at no additional cost or requirement to subscribe, but this option will be provided primarily to government organizations, officials, politicians and the media, as well as other public figures. It will not be possible to buy the right to use the Official label, but it will confirm the identity of the account owner. According to unofficial data, this option was invented specifically to identify officials around the world who would not pay on a regular basis to confirm their identity on Twitter, but at the same time expected to maintain their public status on the pages of the social network.

Naturally, all other Twitter accounts will remain unconfirmed, but it is too early to talk about the prospect of introducing paid access to the social network for all its users, which was discussed at the rumor level the day before. Twitter will continue to experiment with ways to distinguish between account types, Crawford said.





Mark Zuckerberg admitted that a wave of layoffs is coming at Meta and this is the result of his over-optimism.
November 9, 2022

Twitter will not be the only social network whose staff will have to be cut by several thousand people this year. Co-founder Jack Dorsey has already said that Twitter's almost halving staffing was partly due to his early optimism, and now Mark Zuckerberg has made a similar confession at an internal Meta Platforms meeting, according to eyewitnesses.

Their testimonies are cited by The Wall Street Journal, which claims that Meta Platforms will make official statements about the reduction of several thousand employees today, and the personnel who have been fired have already begun to receive notifications from their direct management. The scale of cuts to the Meta Platforms team, which at the end of September totaled 87,000 people, may not only be the largest in the industry this year, but also the first such measures in the 18-year history of Facebook.

In his address to subordinates, according to the source, Mark Zuckerberg acknowledged responsibility for mistakes in the development of the company and stated that it was his excessive optimism about the pace of business growth that led to too rapid expansion of its staff. Meta Platforms Human Resources Manager Lori Goler said all laid-off employees will be paid at least four monthly salaries.

According to Zuckerberg, Meta's headcount will be reduced the most, specifically hiring employees and interacting with corporate clients. Immediately after the meeting of the leaders, the latter began to send notices to their subordinates about the upcoming dismissal. Meta employees began to form communities in advance on external resources, where they discuss the best options for using severance pay.





Elon Musk recently sold nearly $4 billion worth of Tesla shares.
November 8, 2022

Elon Musk became the owner of Twitter at the end of October, which meant the simultaneous final settlement of the deal, which estimated the company's capitalization at $44 billion. During the period from November 4 to November 8, the billionaire sold 19.5 million of his Tesla shares for a total of $3.95 billion It can be assumed that part of the proceeds will go to pay for the purchase of Twitter, but in this case, Tesla shares were sold quite late.

As Barron's explains, the current structure of the deal between Elon Musk and Twitter as of late October meant that he would have to sell between $5 billion and $10 billion in shares to cover the remaining costs associated with buying Twitter assets. In the immediate period leading up to the completion of the transaction, Musk did not sell Tesla shares, but since the end of last week he has sold 38 blocks of these securities for a total of $3.95 billion. , but only in part, because over the past three days, 319 million Tesla shares have changed their owners, and the head of the company has sold only 19.5 million pieces - no more than 6% of the indicated amount.

Between April and August, Elon Musk sold a total of 17.6 million Tesla shares he owned for a total of $15 billion. The funding structure of the Twitter deal remained non-public, so it is still difficult to judge whether the Tesla CEO will sell additional shares of the company to cover associated costs. Now he has about 446 million shares of Tesla in his hands, which corresponds to a share of about 12%. The share price of this issuer has decreased by 45% since the beginning of the year.





German authorities lean towards ban on sale of Elmos chipmaker to Chinese investors.
November 8, 2022

Chancellor Olaf Scholz's attempts to mend relations with Chinese authorities will not stop German officials from blocking the sale of Elmos' semiconductor manufacturing business to Chinese investors. German officials may announce this today.

Elmos itself, headquartered in Dortmund, announced, according to the source, that the Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection had informed the parties involved in the negotiation process of its decision to block the deal. Silex Microsystems, registered in Sweden and controlled by Chinese investors from Sai Microelectronics, was the company that claimed to buy Elmos in Germany, which specializes in the processing of silicon wafers for the production of electronic components for a wide range of purposes.

Economics Minister Robert Habeck said on Tuesday that Germany should develop relations with China, but that investments in critical sectors such as semiconductors should be carefully evaluated. According to the minister, the potential deal with Elmos is just such a case. Representatives of Elmos were surprised by this turn, because until now they have received signals from the relevant departments in Germany that the deal is highly likely to be approved.

Elmos products are used in the automotive industry. The deal with Silex was being prepared by negotiators since last year and was supposed to bring the sellers 85 million euros. Back in 2015, the Chinese company NavTech acquired Sweden's Silex and announced plans to build a $300 million facility in Beijing that would use technology from Swedish partners. Supporters of the sale of the Elmos plant in Germany argue that the production does not use advanced or secret technologies, and is too small in scale to seriously affect the country's economy or its security.





EU launches in-depth investigation into Microsoft's $69 billion purchase of Activision Blizzard.
November 8, 2022

The European Commission announced the start of the second phase of the antitrust investigation of the deal, in which Microsoft intends to buy Activision Blizzard for almost $69 billion. According to the regulator, the deal could harm competition in the gaming industry, so this issue requires in-depth consideration. The agency's investigation will end no later than March 23, 2023.

“A preliminary investigation by the European Commission showed that the deal could significantly reduce the level of competition in the distribution markets for video games for consoles and computers. The preliminary investigation indicates that there is an opportunity for Microsoft, as well as a potential economic incentive, to implement an anti-competitive strategy against third-party console game distributors,” the European Commission said in a statement.

Microsoft expressed its intention to cooperate with the regulator to resolve emerging issues. "Sony, as an industry leader, has expressed concern about Call of Duty, but we have reiterated our commitment to having the same game available on the same day on Xbox and PlayStation," a Microsoft spokesperson said, adding that the company does not intend to restrict access to games for owners of Sony consoles.

The main concerns of the European Commission are related to the fact that after the completion of the deal, Microsoft may restrict competitors' access to popular Activision Blizzard franchises, primarily for Call of Duty games. In addition to the European Union, the deal between Microsoft and Blizzard is being considered by industry regulators in the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and South Korea. At the moment, the takeover has been approved in Brazil and Saudi Arabia.





Under Elon Musk, Twitter's daily audience is growing at a record pace.
November 8, 2022

Elon Musk, who recently bought Twitter, said this week that the popularity of the social network has reached record heights, along the way expressing the hope that "the servers will not melt from this." During his first week at the helm of Twitter, according to advertiser-ready materials, the platform's daily user base increased by an average of 20% year-on-year.

In the United States, Twitter's largest market, The Verge notes that the growth rate of daily user audience was even higher. Since the end of the second quarter, the number of daily users eligible for monetization has increased by 15 million people and exceeded the mark of 250 million. In the second quarter, Twitter had 237.8 million active daily users, and the audience growth rate did not exceed 16.6% in annual terms.

At the same time, Musk noted last week that the social network was facing a massive outflow of advertising revenue. According to the referenced document for Twitter advertisers, hate expressions on the social network pages are now not exceeding the historical norm, remaining in the range of 0.25 to 0.45% of tweets, which are measured in hundreds of millions of tweets daily.

At the same time, Twitter representatives assure advertisers that the social network's content moderation policy will not change until a special committee is created to form and control it. The introduction of the Twitter Blue subscription, which will become a requirement for the verification of new accounts, will not affect users who already have verified accounts. For large corporate users, an additional designation "Official" will be introduced, which will be adjacent to the name of their Twitter account.





Chinese companies began to slow down their processors to avoid US sanctions.
November 8, 2022

The introduction by the United States of new export restrictions against China forced Chinese developers to change the approach to creating chips. Now they are trying to artificially slow down their chips so as not to fall under Washington sanctions and not share the fate of HiSilicon, which developed chips for Huawei and lost a significant part of its customers under US pressure.

Alibaba, startup Biren Technology and other Chinese chipmakers who have spent millions of dollars building advanced processors and accelerators (including AI-related ones) for supercomputers and data centers are now forced to slow down their chips in order to continue using the services of a Taiwanese contract manufacturer chip Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC).

As you know, TSMC has suspended the production of 7nm chips for Biren BR100 computing accelerators, fearing that they are subject to US export restrictions. The fact is that TSMC, like any other semiconductor factory, is difficult to accurately assess the computing capabilities of certain chips. Therefore, she invites Chinese customers to specify the parameters of their chips themselves and sign declarations of responsibility for the data provided. In the case of Biren, the developers themselves, who advertised the capabilities of their chips, are also to blame for the cessation of the release of TSMC chips.

According to Chinese experts, it is difficult to determine whether a particular chip falls under US restrictions. This is because it is determined by such an indicator as the speed of bidirectional transmission and the explanations in the documents on this item are not clear. For chips, according to US sanctions, this figure should not exceed 600 GB / s.

If Biren previously indicated a data transfer rate of 640 GB / s for the BR100 accelerator, now its website shows an indicator according to the calculations of the Bernstein research group, which is 576 GB / s. According to a Biren employee who wished to remain anonymous, the company began tweaking the design of the chips to slow them down in the hope that TSMC would make them.

Dylan Patel, principal analyst at semiconductor research group SemiAnalysis, who first noticed the Biren chip specification change, said the developers are trying to slow down the chip by turning off part of it. He expressed doubt that such a trick would be approved by US regulators, since the chip design is not is changing and there are no guarantees that it will not be launched at full capacity in the future.

Sources told the Financial Times that developers at Alibaba's T-Head division are also considering ways to modify their new 5nm AI processor to avoid US restrictions. Asked for comment by the newspaper, a spokesman for T-Head said, "T-Head's core products are for Alibaba Group's own use only and comply with all applicable regulations."





The US authorities are ready to put pressure on Japan and the Netherlands to join the anti-Chinese sanctions.
November 6, 2022

Until now, negotiations between the US authorities and counterparts in Japan regarding the consolidation of anti-China sanctions were discussed only at the level of rumors, but this week official comments on this topic were made by US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. She expressed her hope that Japan and the Netherlands would join the US in this initiative.

At the same time, the American official did not go into details about interaction with the authorities of these countries, but stated the following: “We are ahead of (China). We must maintain this position, and we must deny access to the technology they need to advance in the military. This is the most strategically bold move we've ever made." According to US media, a senior official from the US Department of Commerce will visit the Netherlands this month for talks on consolidating efforts to enforce anti-China sanctions.

Japanese officials, according to the Nikkei Asian Review, confirmed the holding of daily consultations with their American counterparts, but did not go into their content, citing diplomatic secrecy. They only made it clear that they were ready to take adequate measures in response to the requests of the American side.

In early October, additions to existing export control regulations restricted the supply to China of certain types of equipment and technologies that allow the creation of advanced semiconductor components in this country. The USA, although being the largest player in the market for the corresponding equipment, does not cover the entire range of technologies used. In particular, the ASML holding from the Netherlands formally has reason not to comply with the requirements of US export control regulations, since its equipment does not use technologies of American origin. The Japanese company Tokyo Electron is in a similar situation. Now both manufacturers have legal grounds to supply lithographic equipment to China.

Tellingly, the revenue of Japanese manufacturers of such equipment over the past ten years has tripled, only since the beginning of this year it has increased by 30%. Now, in terms of its share in the structure of Japan's export earnings, it ranks second, bypassing the automotive industry and second only to the steel industry. The export of lithographic equipment brings Japan up to 4% of all income from the supply of products outside the country. Of these, about a quarter is provided by Chinese customers, so the loss of this market as a result of US sanctions will hurt the business of specialized Japanese manufacturers.





Twitter Blue subscription for $8 per month, which gives the right to account verification, will be rolled out first in English-speaking countries.
November 6, 2022

Last Saturday, App Store users in a number of countries got the chance to see that upcoming Twitter updates will offer them $8 a month to verify their account and receive a number of other perks. Customers in the US, Canada, Australia, UK and New Zealand will be the first to get access to the new features. Officially, the service in a new form has not yet been launched, but the bill actually goes for days.

Twitter representatives confirmed, according to CNBC, that the changes will be visible to "a small group of users with early access" as the development team tests and implements updates in real time. As explained in the Twitter update for Apple device users, subscribers to the Twitter Blue service will soon be able to receive the coveted “blue checkmark” next to their names as “already famous celebrities, companies and politicians.” It will mean that the account really belongs to the person or organization that is mentioned in the signature.

Other benefits that are prepared for Twitter Blue subscribers are also confirmed. They will see half as many ads and will be able to post longer text messages or longer videos. Their comments will also appear higher in the search results. Elon Musk himself explained from the pages of his social network that following the USA, Canada, Australia, Great Britain and New Zealand, the Twitter Blue subscription will begin to be introduced in other countries. In India, for example, company management hopes to implement it in less than a month. They intend to verify their Twitter account using data from payment systems on the Apple and Android platforms, Musk called this approach quite reliable.

The billionaire also explained that solving problems with search on Twitter remains a priority for the company. Monetization of content for its creators is also included in the plans of the new leadership of Twitter. If YouTube gives creators up to 55% of advertising revenue, then Elon Musk is convinced that Twitter under his leadership will be able to offer more. All forms of content will be subject to monetization, as Elon Musk assured.





American companies fear losing initiative due to anti-China sanctions - Commerce Secretary asks them to wait.
November 6, 2022

US companies that produce equipment for the production of microcircuits fear that, due to the sanctions imposed on Beijing, competitors from other countries that have not yet supported these sanctions may take their place. In response, they were asked to wait a few months.

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo told companies that make manufacturing equipment that they may have to wait about nine months before Washington convinces allied countries to join sanctions targeting China's semiconductor industry. This week, it really became known that the American authorities began to work closely with Japanese, Korean and European partners, persuading them to support sanctions against Beijing.

However, the restrictive measures introduced by Washington no longer suit the American players themselves, whose place, albeit for a relatively short time, will be taken by competitors from other countries. In particular, the Californian Lam Research, which produces equipment for the production of silicon wafers, said that due to anti-China sanctions, its lost profits in 2023 could amount to $ 2.5 billion. Applied Materials, working in the same area, told investors that only in the current quarter could lose up to $0.5 billion.

In response, the US authorities said they were already working on an agreement under which the Netherlands (ASML) and Japan (Canon and others) would join anti-Chinese sanctions. However, negotiations on this agreement could take six to nine months, Raimondo said at a meeting with American manufacturers. This may take longer as the US partners will have to impose export sanctions on their own semiconductor companies, and this is very painful, as the industry is going through hard times.

Although, as practice shows, Washington usually manages to find convincing arguments - this is confirmed by the cases with the Welsh plant Newport Wafer Fab and the ban on Huawei telecommunications equipment in the UK. Already at the end of the month, an American delegation will arrive in the Netherlands for talks, which will include Deputy Minister of Commerce for Industry and Security Alan Estevez.




Financing Elon Musk's Twitter Deal Could Lose Creditors Up to $1 Billion.
November 1, 2022

As previously reported, the banks that loaned Elon Musk $12.7 billion were forced to refrain from selling the rights to these debt obligations to outside investors, as the market was unnerved by the uncertainty surrounding the deal. Now the deal to buy Twitter is closed, but banks are still in no hurry to sell debt on it, since the new management of the company has not formulated a further development strategy.

According to the Financial Times, Elon Musk's creditors intend to hold debt on the Twitter deal until early next year, at least until the billionaire and his associates publicly formulate a plan for moving forward. It is possible that the delay in the sale of debt will entail losses in the amount of up to $1 billion, but banks hope to cover them after the debt market stabilizes. If it starts to recover faster, then they will not hesitate to sell the obligations, even if it remains uncertain about the plans of the new leadership of Twitter.

So far, debt holders have previously divided them into three parts. About $6.7 billion will be sold as secured loans, $3 billion each will be secured and unsecured bonds, respectively. Investors are now generally wary of buying debt, but when it comes to Elon Musk's deal with Twitter, some of them are expressing confidence that this company has the potential to transform financially under new management. By the way, banks have already had to increase the loan amount to Elon Musk from $12.5 to $12.7 billion since April, so they are probably mentally prepared for adjustments and increased losses.





Apple left the heads responsible for managing stores and information infrastructure.
November 1, 2022

Apple's quarterly reports showed that the company completed the third quarter quite successfully against the backdrop of many competitors. At the same time, there were still some personnel changes in the leadership, and only over the past month, three vice presidents left the Apple staff. Two of them were responsible for the company's sales network and information infrastructure, respectively.

Last month, Anna Matthiasson, who was responsible for online stores in the company, lost her post. At the same time, Mary Demby, who was responsible for corporate information systems for three decades, left her position. In the latter case, CFO Luca Maestri temporarily assumed the function of head of the department, the name of Dembi's successor has not yet been named.

Earlier in October, it was reported that the head of industrial design, Evans Hankey, also left Apple. Jane Horvath, chief information security officer, also left Apple this year for a law firm.

During the pandemic, online commerce has gained particular importance for Apple, in 2021 the company upgraded the design of its branded online store. Karen Rasmussen, who was previously responsible for e-commerce and digital customer experience, has been assigned to lead this area. Since 2014, Apple's e-commerce business has been led by a handful of people, with first division chief Jennifer Bailey now overseeing the company's digital financial services business.





Bitcoin trading has lost activity, but it's not so bad, experts are sure.
October 31, 2022

The price of bitcoin has been hovering around $20,000 for the past few months with little fluctuation, which experts say is a good sign. The recent lack of volatility is not a bad thing, analysts and investors say, as it could indicate signs of a price bottom.

After a significant rise in 2021, when bitcoin traded at $68,990, its price has fallen and is holding around $20,000. According to Kaiko, the 20-day moving average volatility of the cryptocurrency fell below the Nasdaq indices for the first time since 2020. and S&P 500.

Experts attribute the sharp drop in stocks and cryptocurrencies this year to the increase in interest rates by the US Federal Reserve and the strengthening of the dollar. The cryptocurrency market has lost $2 trillion due to the collapse this year compared to the peak of 2021. In particular, bitcoin has fallen by about 70% compared to the November peak. It should also be noted that the correlation of bitcoin with stocks has increased markedly, as more and more institutional investors have invested in cryptocurrency.

Financial institutions are reportedly continuing to invest in crypto despite falling prices and declining interest from retail investors. For example, the Mastercard payment system has launched a service for cryptocurrency trading linked to bank accounts. And Visa is partnering with crypto exchange FTX to offer debit bank cards linked to user trading accounts.

Amid the stabilization of bitcoin, miners have reduced sales of cryptocurrency, suggesting that the worst for mining is over. According to Goldman Sachs, publicly traded bitcoin miners sold 12,000 bitcoins in June and only about 3,000 coins in September.

Matteo Dante Perruccio, President of Wave Financial, an international digital asset management company, predicts that the crypto winter will come to an end in the second quarter of next year. According to James Butterfill, head of research at crypto asset management firm CoinShares, this could come after the Federal Reserve announced its intention to ease interest rate regulation.





Elon Musk conceived the return of Vine - the legendary short video service.
October 31, 2022

Elon Musk, who is the CEO of SpaceX and Tesla and the new owner of social networking site Twitter, asked his followers if the company's short video service Vine, which was shut down in 2016, should be restored. A poll dedicated to this appeared on the billionaire's Twitter page.

"Should I return Vine?" — Musk wrote, thus offering his subscribers to decide the fate of the once popular service. At the time of this writing, nearly 2 million Twitter users have taken part in the poll, and 70% of them voted for the return of Vine.

Recall that Twitter bought Vine in 2012. Later, he gained popularity and helped a large number of people become real Internet stars. However, over time, popular content authors began to leave the platform due to disagreements over the service's affiliate program. In 2016, Twitter management decided to stop investing in Vine, after which the service was closed.

About a year later, ByteDance, a Chinese company, bought Musical.ly, a video-making social network, for $1 billion. ByteDance later merged it with its TikTok short video service, which has become incredibly popular around the world in recent years.





Dogecoin has risen in price after Elon Musk's purchase of the social network Twitter.
October 31, 2022

Cryptocurrency Dogecoin rose by more than 70% over the weekend, helped by the news of the purchase of the Twitter social network by billionaire Elon Musk, who is a supporter of digital assets. According to the CoinDesk platform, Dogecoin has fallen in price by more than 7% over the past day. At the time of writing this note, a unit of cryptocurrency cost about $0.11.

Elon Musk, who is the CEO of SpaceX and Tesla, has had a significant impact on Dogecoin and Bitcoin in the past. Earlier this year, Tesla allowed its customers to pay for purchases using Dogecoin. In addition, Elon Musk's recently released Burnt Hair perfume can also be purchased using cryptocurrency.

Cryptocurrency exchange Binance, which invested $500 million in the purchase of Twitter, announced that it is working on issues related to the integration of blockchain and cryptocurrencies into the social network. According to available data, the study of blockchain integration in Twitter began under the leadership of former CEO Jack Dorsey.

Earlier this month, Musk said the purchase of Twitter would be a step towards building a universal app. A striking example of such a product is the WeChat service, popular in Asia, which can be used not only for exchanging messages and other data, but also for making payments, making purchases, ordering a taxi, etc.





On November 1, a “potentially dangerous” asteroid the size of a huge skyscraper will approach the Earth as close as possible.
October 31, 2022

According to NASA, a recently discovered "potentially dangerous" asteroid with an estimated diameter of 330-740 m at a speed of 84,500 km / h will follow as close as possible to the Earth on November 1 - 2.3 million km, only six times farther than the Moon. is away from the earth. By cosmic standards - extremely close.

NASA considers all space objects flying at a distance of 193 million km or closer from the Earth as "near-Earth", and any body flying closer than 7.5 million km from the Earth as "potentially dangerous". Once such bodies are included in a special register, they are monitored to control possible changes in predicted trajectories, which may result in a threat to the Earth. Although no particular threat is expected from the recently discovered 2022 RM4, a body with a possible diameter of 740 m, whose brightness will increase to 14.3 mag, will be clearly visible in the sky even with "home" telescopes.

Today, NASA tracks the position and orbits of approximately 28 thousand asteroids, identifying them using the so-called. Asteroid Terrestrial-impact Last Alert System (ATLAS) - a chain of four telescopes capable of completely scanning the entire starry sky every 24 hours. Since the ATLAS system went live in 2017, it has detected more than 700 near-Earth asteroids and 66 comets, and two of them - 2019 MO and 2018 LA did hit the earth - near Puerto Rico and South Africa, respectively, but their sizes were so small that nothing catastrophic happened.

According to the aerospace agency, collisions with bodies of "apocalyptic" size are not expected for at least the next 100 years, but, according to scientists, such data do not give reason to relax. Although most near-Earth objects are unlikely to end human civilization, there are quite a few catastrophic collisions in the history of the planet.

So, in March 2021, a meteor the size of a bowling ball exploded in the atmosphere over the state of Vermont in the USA (200 kg of TNT), and in 2013 a rather powerful explosion occurred over Chelyabinsk, according to some estimates, its power reached 400-500 kilotons, or 26-33 times more than the bomb dropped on Hiroshima. During the explosion over Chelyabinsk, buildings were damaged, many windows were shattered, and about 1,500 people were injured of varying severity.

Space agencies are already working on creating planetary defenses. So, at the end of last month, the DART probe for the first time in history managed to change the orbit of an asteroid - the target was Dimorph, which, fortunately, did not threaten the Earth. China also announced the start of preparations for a mission to change the orbit of one of the celestial bodies. We are talking about the asteroid Bennu, which should fly at a distance of 7.4 million km from Earth's orbit between 2175 and 2199, and Chinese scientists hope to prevent a potentially dangerous collision.





Tesla is going to expand the territory of its enterprise in Berlin and has begun deforestation.
October 31, 2022

As you know, in the next couple of years, Tesla intends to increase the production of electric vehicles by an average of 50% annually. To do this, it is important not only to build new enterprises, but also to expand existing ones. According to German media, in the vicinity of Berlin on Friday, they again began to cut trees for the expansion of the existing Tesla plant.

The specialized machinery has already been spotted in the pine forest that borders the company's site on the outskirts of Berlin. According to RBB24, the automaker has received permission from local authorities to cut wood on an area of ​​nearly 70 hectares, in addition to the existing 90-hectare site. The new territory allocated for the needs of Tesla will be located to the north of the already functioning enterprise.

To lull the vigilance of conservationists are the forest restoration measures that Tesla has committed to carry out to compensate for its construction activities. It has already restored about 300 hectares of forests, although in this case we are talking about mixed vegetation, and in the case of new construction, mainly coniferous forests should suffer.

By the first quarter of next year, the company expects to increase the production of electric vehicles in Germany to 5,000 units per week from the current 2,000 units. Back in June, the company produced about a thousand cars a week. In the future, in Germany, Tesla is going to produce 500,000 cars a year, but by the beginning of next year it will only reach 50% of this level under favorable circumstances. Now the company in Germany employs more than 7,000 people, in the future the number may increase to 12,000 people.





Users may have to pay to verify their Twitter account.
October 31, 2022

Since the question of the authenticity of Twitter accounts has become a bone of contention between the former management of the social network and its current owner Elon Musk, it is easy to imagine that some reforms aimed at verifying the authenticity of accounts will be the first steps of the new head of the company. Some sources expect that users will have to pay to verify their Twitter account.

Platformer over the weekend announced Elon Musk's intention to cancel the free account verification procedure on Twitter. The billionaire wants to force those who want to keep their verified account to become subscribers of the Twitter Blue service, which expands user privileges for a subscription fee of $ 4.99 per month.

Although such information has not been officially confirmed, Elon Musk literally stated the following: “The entire verification process is now being reformed.” It is believed that the option of forcing users to switch to a subscription with a monthly fee in order to maintain verified accounts is only being considered, and the new management of Twitter may yet abandon the corresponding plans.

The Verge separately reported that Elon Musk set employees a task to develop a new verification program by November 7, according to which the user is given 90 days to proceed to a subscription after the initial verification of the account, and if after that he does not become a Twitter Blue subscriber, his status may be lost. Along the way, the possibility of increasing the subscription fee for a subscription to $ 19.99 per month is being discussed. The source reports that Twitter employees responsible for implementing these reforms have literally been given an ultimatum - if they do not implement the new feature by November 7, then they will have to leave their jobs.

Musk also suggests redirecting all Twitter users who are not logged in when visiting the social networking site to an Explore page listing the most popular tweets, according to the source.





Elon Musk has denied accusations of hastily reducing staff Twitter in order to save on payouts.
October 31, 2022

With the filing of The New York Times, information appeared yesterday about Elon Musk's intentions to expedite the dismissal of some of the employees in order not to pay them that part of the compensation package that is nominated in the shares of the social network. Twitter employees must receive shares and options on November 1st. The billionaire had to make excuses that he had no such intentions.

Musk, though he took over Twitter after buying the company, refuses to identify himself as CEO, and he is believed to have already fired his predecessor Parag Agrawal and four other executives on the first day after the deal closed last week. The reason for the hasty dismissal could be the inconsistency of Elon Musk's ideas about the number of dubious accounts in the Twitter audience with the data provided by the company's former management at the stage of preparation for the deal.

The billionaire had to say that the information published by The New York Times about the desire of the new owner of Twitter to save money on payments to reduced staff by laying off employees before November 1 is not true. It was not specified whether the five downsized Twitter executives would qualify for compensation in the form of company stock. Appropriate remuneration for top-level executives can be substantial in terms of value. Third-party experts explain that it is possible to deprive the dismissed executives of such remuneration only if it is proved that they have grossly violated either company policy or the law.





In order to reduce costs, Intel will have to reduce the range of products.
October 30, 2022

At the last quarterly reporting conference, Intel management was forced to declare that by the middle of the decade they hope to reduce annual costs by $ 8-10 billion, and next year the savings will reach $ 3 billion. , cost optimization in the field of technical support, sales and marketing.

As noted the day before, Intel representatives did not indicate how many staff could be cut, but CFO David Zinsner made it clear that the changes could reach "significant amounts." According to rumors, individual divisions of Intel will lose up to 20% of the staff. Already, the company has begun cutting costs, and incurred $664 million in related expenses in the third quarter. In essence, laying off employees means paying them severance pay, and the company will be forced to increase costs before it starts saving on the payroll. It is possible that part of this amount was just used to pay severance pay.

Already when Patrick Gelsinger was the CEO of Intel, the company began to get rid of divisions that, according to certain criteria, did not meet its strategic goals. In the summer of this year, it was decided to abandon the release of Optane memory (3D XPoint), shortly before that, Intel decided to put an end to the history of the development of drones that "rose into the sky" even under Brian Krzanich. True, Mobileye's IPO can hardly be called a branch of the core business, because Intel retains about 95% of the company's shares. But the very vector of this movement suggests that corporations would like to quickly get a return on multibillion-dollar investments in active driver assistance.

Intel is also going to look for additional resources to optimize costs in the more distant future during the transition to the “internal contract manufacturer” business model, which implies an increase in the administrative independence of the unit responsible for the production of chips. It, in fact, will have to show more independence in its interaction with full-time chip developers.

So far, Intel is not ready to retreat from its intention to master five new technical processes in four years. Patrick Gelsinger at the quarterly event even stated that success is achieved with each new quarter. By 2025, the company is still aiming to regain its technological leadership. For this reason, over the next few years, capital expenditures relative to revenues will be held at 35% before being reduced to the more familiar 25%.

Intel does not have many sources of funding for such plans in the face of deteriorating market conditions. This year, the company's revenue will decrease by $13 billion compared to the company's expectations at the beginning of the year, and compared to last year, it will fall by 20%. The construction of new enterprises requires multi-billion investments. Of course, up to two-thirds of the funds for these purposes will be covered by state subsidies and money from customers or partners, but up to 30% of the budget of each new project will be covered by Intel from its own capital.





American scientists showed how to build chips from the bottom up - now they are being created the other way around.
October 29, 2022

Traditionally, semiconductor lithography creates chips from top to bottom as the substrate is etched deeper and deeper. This is convenient, but severely limits detail at the deepest level. A group of scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) proposed to build chips in reverse - from the smallest nanobrick on a clean substrate to ready-to-use complex nanostructures, which should improve the performance of electronics.

To a certain extent, the proposed technical process is stamping in the form of transferring the working material according to a template onto a silicon substrate. Such methods are already in use, but have one serious drawback: the silicon and the chip are contaminated or deformed, which leads to an increase in the level of factory defects, since glue, annealing or high pressure is used in the transfer process to fix the "building" material on the substrate.

Researchers at MIT took a different path. They were able to prudently manage the atomic and molecular forces that fixed the nanoparticles on the surface of the silicon substrate better than any glue. Strictly speaking, scientists involved two types of phenomena - the capillary movement of liquids and the van der Waals forces.

Nanoparticles of building material in the form of cubes with sides of 50 nm in a drop of liquid were applied to a template, after which the process of uniform distribution of nanobricks over the template took place. This was facilitated by capillary phenomena. Then the pattern of each layer (pattern) was transferred to an arbitrary substrate, for example, silicon. The liquid also contributed to the transfer of the nanoparticle pattern onto the substrate. When it dried out, the nanoparticles continued to be retained on the substrate, but already due to another phenomenon - due to the van der Waals force. These forces turn out to be a sufficiently reliable “cement” (acting at the interface between the substrate and nanoparticles) so that the pattern firmly adheres to the substrate with an accuracy of each nanoparticle.

“These forces are ubiquitous and can often be detrimental to the fabrication of nanoscale objects, as they can lead to the destruction of structures. But we can come up with ways to very precisely control these forces in order to use them to control manipulations at the nanoscale, ”said one of the authors of the study.

With this transfer of nanoparticles, the scrap rate is reduced to less than 5%, the scientists report. The surface of the substrate remains intact: no solvents or adhesives are used, which increases the cleanliness of production. In the future, the proposed solution will help create nanometer-sized electronic components with the highest degree of detail and accuracy, which will certainly improve the performance of semiconductor devices.





European operators require US IT giants to pay for the use of communication networks - the money will be used for modernization.
October 29, 2022

European telecommunications operators continue to insist that online service providers compensate for part of the costs of maintaining and updating the network infrastructure. They are asking European regulators to introduce a scheme whereby IT companies sending traffic over their networks would be charged a fee that could be spent on infrastructure upgrades.

Operators argue that platforms such as Amazon, Prime and Netflix process gigantic amounts of data and therefore must contribute to funding the addition of new capacity needed to cope with the increased load. And voice calling apps such as WhatsApp and Skype, for example, are accused of wanting to "ride the hare."

"The simple argument is that telcos want to be properly compensated for providing this access and traffic growth," PP Foresight analyst Paolo Pescatore told CNBC.

This idea was supported in France, Italy and Spain, and the European Commission is likely to hold consultations on this issue in early 2023.

Meta*, Alphabet, Apple, Amazon, Microsoft and Netflix accounted for more than 56% of network traffic in 2021, according to a report commissioned by the European Telecommunications Network Operators' Association (ETNO) published in May. The authors of the report argue that the tech giants' annual contribution of €20bn to operators' network costs could increase the productivity of the EU economy by €72bn. By some estimates, broadband operators are investing around €50 billion a year in their infrastructure to support 5G and next-generation fiber networks.

Disputes about this are going on not only in Europe, but also in other regions. In South Korea, for example, companies have lobbied politicians to force platforms such as YouTube and Netflix to pay for access to the network. And SK Broadband even sued Netflix over network costs related to the launch of its popular show Squid Game.

* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which a court has made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 “On Counteracting Extremist Activity”.





It will be much more difficult for Elon Musk to reform Twitter than to buy a company.
October 29, 2022

Elon Musk today became the actual owner and head of Twitter, although the closing of the company's privatization deal has not yet been officially announced. Now the businessman has a more difficult task to carry out on the platform of the reforms he spoke about earlier.

Mr. Musk recently said that he and other investors in this deal are overpaying for Twitter, buying the platform for $44 billion, but he is confident that the potential of the social network in the long term will increase its value by an order of magnitude, that is, ten times. Musk talked a lot about his intentions for Twitter, but it will not be easy to implement all the initiatives of the new owner of the platform.

One of Musk's ideas is to turn Twitter into a super app. Similar projects originated in China in the past decade, and the most striking example of a super app is WeChat: once it was a messenger, but today the service allows, in addition to messaging, to make payments, make purchases on the Internet and call a taxi. One universal service really appealed to users who do not have direct access to Google, Facebook * and other Western resources.

The businessman told investors that he plans to build a project in which premium subscriptions are sold in order to reduce dependence on advertising, there are mechanisms for material incentives for content authors, and it also has its own payment system. But in the United States, it will be extremely difficult to implement something similar - the local conjuncture is strikingly different from China, and the place of super applications is occupied by Apple and Google, which will do everything to prevent a new player from appearing. The same Apple recently blocked Spotify's intention to start selling audiobooks on its platform.

The introduction of a payment system will require the introduction of identity verification mechanisms, which directly contradicts the current Twitter ideology: in order to exercise the right to freedom of speech without fear for their future, many users preferred to remain anonymous, which made the platform a powerful political tool.

Serious concerns among the current Twitter staff are caused by Musk's plans to soften the content moderation policy, which so far complies with the norms applied by other platforms. It is assumed that the employees of the trust and security department will undergo the most numerous reductions - according to media reports, the businessman has already fired the head of this department, Vijaya Gadde. Musk also wants to dramatically transform the way ads on the platform look—he said exactly three years ago that he “hates ads.” Today, it provides 90% of Twitter's revenue, but the new owner's initiatives, such as former US President Donald Trump's return to the platform, could alienate both advertisers and non-politically aligned audiences.

Finally, Musk, who calls himself an ardent supporter of free speech, traditionally communicates with government officials in a conciliatory tone - in particular, he did not object when he was warned in the EU that even under the new rules, Twitter would not be able to work in the region without censorship. To work with tech giants in the EU, they adopted the Digital Services Act (DSA), according to which disobedience is punishable by a fine of 6% of the company's annual global turnover. In India, Twitter is actively trying to champion free speech, but Musk's overzealousness could complicate things. And the Tesla Shanghai plant owned by the businessman is of particular concern in the United States - last year China provided the electric car manufacturer with $ 14 billion in revenue. to a large amount of personal data of Americans.

* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which a court has made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 “On Counteracting Extremist Activity”.





Elon Musk Takes Over at Twitter, Fires Ex-CEO and Other Executives.
October 29, 2022

Elon Musk has become the de facto head of Twitter. Top managers of the company have left the headquarters in San Francisco and are not going to return.

Parag Agrawal's former CEO and CFO Ned Segal left the company's San Francisco headquarters with no intention of returning. Vijaya Gadde, head of legal policy and security, also lost her position, the Washington Post added.

Earlier, Judge Kathaleen McCormick, who was supposed to hear the case between Twitter and Musk, gave the parties until October 28 to close the deal to buy the company. Two days ago, the businessman visited the Twitter office with a sink in his hands, in an allegorical manner urging the public to "think about it", after which he spoke at a meeting of the company's employees and assured them that the message disseminated by the media about his intention to cut 75% of the staff was not true. Musk also listed on his profile the position of Chief Twit, which means "head of Twitter", and the New York Stock Exchange stopped trading in the company's shares.





Seagate accused of selling Huawei hard drives in circumvention of sanctions - the company does not admit guilt.
October 27, 2022

US authorities accused Seagate of selling its products to Huawei, which is under US sanctions and blacklisted by the US Department of Commerce. You can work with Huawei, but this requires a license from the US Department of Commerce, which Seagate allegedly did not have. The company, in turn, denies allegations of violating US export regulations.

In a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) released Wednesday, Seagate refuted accusations by the US Department of Commerce that it violated export control regulations by illegally supplying storage devices to a company on that agency's Entity List. We are talking about the Chinese supplier of telecommunications equipment Huawei, which was added to the black list in 2019.

US companies must obtain special licenses from the US government to sell certain items of equipment or do business with companies or individuals on the Entity List. They can be fined for breaking the rules. However, in August it was revealed that the US Department of Commerce approved 94% of requests for licenses to supply restricted technologies to China.

Seagate said it received a formal indictment (proposed charging letter, PCL) from the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) of the Department of Commerce, accusing it of violating US Export Administration Regulations (EAR) when supplying Huawei hard drives.

“The PCL alleges that Seagate violated the EAR by providing Seagate hard drives to an Entity List customer and affiliates between August 2020 and September 2021,” Seagate said in a filing with the SEC. The company also stated that it "did not engage in prohibited activities as claimed by BIS because, among other things, Seagate hard drives are not subject to the EAR."

If Seagate is found to have violated US export regulations, it will be fined $300,000, or twice the value of the deal, with a higher choice.





Instagram* is used by 2 billion people a month - in terms of audience it is catching up with Facebook*.
October 27, 2022

The number of monthly active users of the social network Instagram* has grown to 2 billion people worldwide. According to this indicator, the platform is catching up with Facebook*, another social network of Meta* Platforms.

This information appeared in Meta*'s financial report, after which the company's shares lost about 20% in price. It was also announced that more than 2 billion people use the WhatsApp messenger daily. The total number of monthly active users of the Meta* family of applications was 3.71 billion people.

As for the user audience of the Instagram* platform, in June 2018 it was more than 1 billion people. Over the past time, the social network has undergone one of the most significant transformations since ten years ago it became part of Meta* (at that time the company was called Facebook*). Now Instagram* shows users significantly more content based on their preferences, which contributes to the growth of the audience. TikTok-style short videos also appeared on the platform, due to which it was able to compete more successfully with the Chinese short video service.

These and other changes are being integrated into the social network in an attempt to keep Instagram* relevant in a crowded social media industry. It's important to Meta* that its services continue to keep users coming back and spending a significant portion of their time on Facebook* and Instagram*. This is because the company earns most of its revenue from ads placed on these platforms. Advertisers have been cutting spending lately amid economic uncertainty, which has made it harder for Meta* to build revenue for its advertising arm.

* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





Musk reassures Twitter employees - he does not plan to fire 75% of them.
October 27, 2022

Elon Musk told Twitter employees that he is not going to cut 75% of the staff after he takes over the company in the coming days.

Elon Musk's $44 billion deal to buy Twitter is likely to close tomorrow, a deadline set earlier by the judge who was supposed to hear the takeover case. Having visited the company's office in San Francisco the day before, the businessman turned to its employees and denied the information published by the media that he plans to fire three-quarters of the staff of the social network.

However, some of Twitter's staff is still expected to be laid off, and this is causing some concern among the company's employees. Earlier, the businessman posted a short video in which he enters the headquarters of Twitter with a shell in his hands - in an allegorical manner, he wanted to urge the public to think, but the company's employees perceived this performance as a threat. In addition, he changed the information in his social network profile, describing himself as Chief Twit, that is, the head of Twitter.





The grandson of the founder of Samsung Electronics, Lee Jae-young, finally officially took over the company.
October 27, 2022

Samsung was founded in 1938 by Lee Byung-chul, and until October 2020 it was nominally headed by his son Lee Kun-hee, although due to the latter’s long illness, the actual leadership had already passed to the grandson of the founder Lee Jae-yong. The latter's career was thwarted by two prison terms for securities fraud and bribery, and only now can he become executive chairman of Samsung Electronics.

Thus, Lee Jae Young managed to take the top position in the company founded by his grandfather. It is generally accepted that this appointment will not affect the management flexibility of Samsung Electronics so much, since while still remaining vice president of the company, Lee Jae-yong made all key decisions on his own. Only problems with the law prevented him from occupying the highest position in the hierarchy of the management structure of Samsung Electronics, although he was released back in August 2021, also as a result of a traditional amnesty, but was not fully reinstated for another twelve months.

The newly minted head of the Samsung Electronics empire himself said this week: “Without a doubt, we are at a tipping point. Now is the time to plan the next step, the time to act, to show determination and steadfastness.” Experts link the entry of the Samsung heir to the new position as hopes for implementing more drastic changes and attracting larger investments.

Lee Jae-young joined the company, then led by his father, in 1991 and rose to the position of vice president and vice chairman of the board by 2012, but faced allegations of securities fraud and bribery in 2017. After serving two incomplete terms in prison in succession, he was released in August 2021, and a year later he was finally amnestied. Now Lee Jae-yong's personal fortune is estimated at $5.9 billion, he directly owns 1.63% of the shares of Samsung Electronics and 18.13% of the holding structure of Samsung C&T Corp.





The world's first fusion power plant could be built in the US - at first it will be just a demonstrator.
October 25, 2022

Recently, General Atomics (GA) announced a new concept of experimental fusion facility (FPP) for safe and economically clean fusion energy. The issue of creating a demonstrator will soon be decided with the partners of the company. If the project is approved in the United States, the world's first fusion power plant may appear, which will show the viability of the technology.

The project is based on a unique solution proposed by General Atomics for capturing fusion energy in a silicon carbide blanket, rather than steel widely used today for making tokamaks. Blankets convert the energy of neutrons arising in the process of fusion into a form that is easy for further utilization. In particular, heating the coolant for further use in gas turbines to generate electricity.

The General Atomics GAMBL (GA Modular Blanket) solution will double the coolant temperature from about 500 °C to over 1000 °C. Also in the blanket, in the process of reactions, tritium is produced - the future fuel component, which will ensure self-sufficiency for thermonuclear fusion processes.

"The General Atomics experimental fusion facility is a revolutionary step forward for the commercialization of fusion energy," said Dr. Wayne Solomon, vice president of magnetic fusion energy at General Atomics. "Our hands-on approach to building FPP is the culmination of more than sixty years of investment in fusion research and development."

The world's largest experiment on the creation of a thermonuclear reactor (tokamak) with a stable self-sustaining energy output remains the international ITER project in the south of France. But electricity will not be generated at the ITER reactor. Therefore, the General Atomics project will compare favorably with ITER, although the capacities of the facilities will not be comparable in scale. However, it will be impossible to repeat the international project at the level of individual countries, while the relatively compact General Atomics installation may well become mass-produced if it justifies itself at the demonstrator level.





US arrests Chinese spies for allegedly interfering with Huawei investigation.
October 25, 2022

The entire American campaign against Huawei Technologies was initially based on the thesis of a close connection of this telecommunications giant with the government structures of the PRC. The new circumstances of the investigation, which was conducted in the United States, allow local authorities to accuse the Chinese side of trying to counter the investigation.

According to CNN, citing official legal documents, the US Department of Justice has filed charges against six Chinese citizens who are suspected of spying for the Celestial Empire, and two of them, according to the investigation, acted directly in the interests of Huawei Technologies. When the trial began in 2017, Gouchun He and Zheng Wang allegedly attempted to recruit one of the officials with access to the Huawei Technologies investigation, according to US investigators. In exchange for cash and jewelry, including cryptocurrency, they tried to persuade a US citizen to cooperate with the Chinese side. In reality, the American turned out to be a double agent working for the FBI, which made it possible to reveal the plans of the suspects. For only one document classified as "secret", it is believed that the defendants handed over $41,000 to the agent.

The purpose of this activity was to obtain non-public information about the progress of the investigation against Huawei, including audio recordings of court hearings held in a closed format. Payments to the double agent continued until last week, but now Chinese citizens suspected of spying have been arrested by US authorities.

Four more Chinese citizens were arrested in the United States on charges of industrial espionage in favor of their country. They tried to recruit members of the academic community and law enforcement officials to swindle valuable technical and scientific information. As compensation, valuable gifts were offered to potential accomplices, including fully paid tourist trips to China. The investigation also revealed precedents of pressure on "political immigrants" from China who are in the United States, in order to force them to return to their homeland, where they are accused of corruption.





Google Chrome browser will stop supporting Windows 7 and 8.1 next year.
October 25, 2022

Google intends to release the final version of the Chrome browser for Windows 7 and 8.1 early next year. We are talking about Chrome version 110, which is tentatively scheduled for release on February 7, 2023 - it will be the last build that supports these legacy operating systems.

The problem is much more serious than it might seem at first glance. Although Windows 7, which was released back in 2009, was officially discontinued back in 2020, the operating system still runs on a lot of devices - according to last year's statistics, there were at least 100 million computers running it.

For this huge group, the size of a fairly populous country, the changes will come as an unpleasant surprise - in addition to the fact that support for the operating system itself has long ceased, using an outdated browser can create an additional security risk.

Of course, the browser will continue to work for some time, but users of Windows 7 and 8.1 will no longer receive updates with “patches” that fix vulnerabilities. Those who are still using old hardware should consider upgrading to a newer version of Windows.

In addition, Google proposed a solution for weak / old computers quite a long time ago - those who wish can install ChromeOS Flex on them, which is supposed to work quickly on outdated hardware, including not only PCs, but also Apple computers - this will actually turn them to Chromebooks.





Hackers adopted tools for DDoS attacks on Russian companies for blackmail in other countries.
October 25, 2022

In Q3 2022, 90% more attacks were recorded worldwide than in Q3 2021. The duration of incidents also increased by 60%, StormWall experts calculated. At the same time, the tools developed for DDoS attacks on Russian companies began to be used around the world. It is expected that the new generation of tools will greatly simplify the implementation of large-scale attacks.

The largest number of DDoS attacks in the third quarter of 2022 worldwide fell on the telecom sector (43.2%), and many attacks were directed at the entertainment sector (21.3%), the financial industry (16.3%), online - retail (14.8%), education (2.1%), logistics (1.3%). The strong increase in the number of attacks was due to the high activity of politically motivated hacktivists, experts say. Also, the number of incidents has increased due to the fact that hacktivists have developed new public tools to launch attacks.

Most of the attacks on telecom companies were carried out for the sake of extortion and blackmail, as well as for political reasons. In Russia, politically motivated hacktivists have become the main initiators of attacks on banks and payment systems; in other countries, incidents against financial organizations were carried out for the purpose of extortion.

In the online retail sector, online stores of electronics, furniture and clothing were most affected. The main reason for the attacks is said to be unscrupulous competition among market participants. In the education segment, a number of attacks were also organized by politically motivated hacktivists who tried to disrupt online education or university admission campaigns in Russia.

The majority of DDoS attacks were on HTTP/HTTPS (73%), the share of attacks using TCP/UDP was 19%, and DNS - 3%. In Russia, the number of DDoS attacks in Q3 2022 increased by 180% compared to Q3 2021. The leader in the number of attacks was the financial sector (45% of the total number of attacks), followed by online retail (21%), the telecom sector (18%), the entertainment sector (9%), and education (4%).





Auroras have punched a hole in the Earth's ozone layer with a diameter of about 400 km.
October 24, 2022

Although the auroras look rather unusual and impressive, scientists have found that some types of auroras cause significant damage to the Earth's ozone layer. Caused by solar flares and coronal mass ejections of the aurora, including the so-called. isolated proton auroras, occurring far from the poles, wreak havoc on the Earth. Until recently, scientists had little information about the effects caused by these phenomena.

According to the Space portal, a team of Japanese researchers found that one of these auroras caused a hole with a diameter of about 400 km to appear in the Earth's ozone layer, most of the ozone in this place evaporated literally within 1.5 hours - no one expected such a speed and scale.

Although isolated proton auroras are not as bright as classical auroras, they are still visible to the naked eye. Charged particles from solar flares usually stay in the outer and inner Van Allen radiation belts, preventing them from reaching Earth and becoming a desert like Mars. But some particles that have overcome the radiation belts interact with the atmosphere, bypassing the protection of magnetic fields. The interaction of particles with the atmosphere leads to the formation of nitrogen and hydrogen oxides, which, in turn, destroy the ozone layer in the mesosphere. Fortunately, the stratosphere remains largely untouched.

However, although the ozone layer in the mesosphere recovers faster than the ozone holes in the stratospheric ozone layer, often caused by human activities, isolated proton aurors still cause changes in the Earth's atmosphere. Also, cataclysms in space weather can cause failures in the operation of satellites and energy infrastructure, in addition, charged particles pose a threat to astronauts.

It is expected that the discovery will help scientists predict changes in space weather and, possibly, predict how much such auroras can change the atmosphere of our planet.





Chinese YMTC forced to lay off US employees due to new US sanctions.
October 24, 2022

The US is trying to block the influx of talented workers into the Chinese semiconductor manufacturing industry. China's largest chip maker, Yangtze Memory Technologies Corp (YMTC), has asked American employees to leave their positions at the company so that it can avoid new restrictions from the United States, according to the latest data.

It is not yet known exactly how many US passport holders and green card holders will have to leave YMTC, but there is evidence that some have already had to quit. According to one of the employees of the company, a number of key members of the team responsible for the breakthrough development of YMTC in the field of NAND memory have left their posts.

The layoffs began in connection with new US restrictions on Chinese businesses. It is known that the layoffs of citizens with American passports and green cards began in a number of Chinese companies, including European and American divisions.

The new rules require every U.S. citizen, resident, or organization to obtain special permission from the U.S. Department of Commerce to provide any assistance to Chinese technology companies, severely limiting China's ability to attract the most qualified American citizens to develop its technology. We are talking, among other things, about hundreds of citizens of Chinese origin who received education and experience in the United States.

Thus, the former head of YMTC, Simon Yang, who has American citizenship, was forced to leave his post in September even before the proclamation of sanctions. After that, he became vice chairman of the company, and in light of the new US restrictions, his status is unknown. The company itself does not comment on the issue.

According to lawyers, US authorities are unlikely to issue licenses to circumvent restrictions. According to one of the Chinese top managers, they will either have to leave their job or renounce American citizenship (which is also quite difficult in accordance with American laws).

According to some reports, YMTC is already negotiating the dismissal of a number of employees who did not want to part with American passports. Rumor has it that Chinese Americans have been asked to work remotely for now until the situation clears up.

Industry HR experts are confident that the new restrictions will affect China's ability to hire talented employees. According to some reports, US regulations have already "halved" the number of candidates for senior positions in the chip and hardware sectors. It was previously reported that this worsens the situation of Chinese business, which is already experiencing a shortage of qualified personnel.

It is known that the Chinese with American passports are at the head of the leading Chinese manufacturers and suppliers of semiconductors, including VeriSilicon, Montage Technology and Advanced Micro-Fabrication Equipment (Amec), and the further fate of such employees and enterprises remains unknown.





Ton Weiss Predicts Bitcoin to Rise to $100,000 in 2023.
October 24, 2022

Quotes of the first cryptocurrency will reach $ 100,000 next year against the backdrop of the upcoming halving. This was stated by the famous trader Ton Weiss in an interview with Kitco.

He also warned of the possibility of the price of digital gold falling to the $14,000 level ahead of a bull market.

According to Weiss, capital flows from Europe to the US and the syndrome of lost profits can become the engine of growth.

“They missed their chance to catch the low in 2018. This is another possibility. If bitcoin ever drops below $10,000, investors will immediately take advantage of this,” the trader explained.

He also noted the decentralization and resistance to censorship of the first cryptocurrency. According to Weiss, these characteristics will provide the asset with mass adoption.

“We are seeing how governments, the Central Bank and ordinary banks freeze accounts. Just this year, we have witnessed how the West and the United States confiscate funds from people because of Russian passports,” he said.

Earlier, Bitcoin maximalist and founder of MicroStrategy, Michael Saylor, predicted a new all-time high in the price of the first cryptocurrency in the next four years.

In October, Kevin O'Leary, an investor and star of the TV show Shark Tank, said that digital gold quotes will resume growth after the passage of a bill to regulate stablecoins.

That same month, Galaxy Digital founder Mike Novogratz speculated that the bear market could continue for another six months.





Hong Kong authorities are thinking about easing the requirements for trading cryptocurrencies.
October 24, 2022

The Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) is considering allowing retail investors to "invest directly in virtual assets". This was stated by the head of the financial technology department of the regulator, Elizabeth Wong, writes the South China Morning Post.

According to her, the initiative marks a departure from the position of the SFC, which allows only professional investors to trade cryptocurrencies on centralized exchanges. These include individuals with a portfolio of at least 8 million Hong Kong dollars ($1 million).

“We have four years of experience regulating the industry […]. We think this is actually a good time to carefully consider whether we will only adhere to this requirement for professional investors,” Wong explained.

According to the publication, industry participants have previously expressed concern about the current requirements for trading cryptocurrencies. In their opinion, the restrictions "frighten off companies" and the lack of regulatory clarity undermines Hong Kong's status as a "virtual asset hub".

In 2019, the SFC published rules designed to set out the regulatory environment for fund management companies that invest more than 10% of their portfolios in cryptocurrencies.

At the same time, the regulator introduced licensing requirements for "trading platforms for virtual assets." A permit to operate in Hong Kong was required if at least one security token was traded on the platform.

Later, the Commission decided to extend the regulation to all bitcoin exchanges.

In 2021, the Hong Kong Bureau of Financial Services and Treasury began drafting a bill that would ban the operation of cryptocurrency trading platforms without a license.





Neuralink event with a possible demonstration of success in the development of brain implants is delayed by a month.
October 24, 2022

In the second half of August, Elon Musk recalled the existence of the Neuralink company he founded, which is trying to develop an interface between the human brain and a computer, promising to arrange some kind of demonstration of his success on October 31 of this year. The specified date is rapidly approaching, and therefore the billionaire had to admit that the event is shifting to November 30th.

Since the founder of Neuralink did not say anything about the event program before, in the current situation it is difficult to understand why there was a delay, and what is now planned to be demonstrated at the end of November. The only thing that can be judged from the context of Musk's statement is that the event should contain not only a narrative part, but also a demonstration part.

Recall that Neuralink has already demonstrated the results of implanting a special chip into the brains of pigs and monkeys. A test monkey learned to play computer ping-pong by controlling a virtual paddle with his mind, for which he was regularly rewarded in the form of food. Later, there was a fuss in the press, as animal advocates claimed that not all attempts by Neuralink specialists to implant a special device in the skull ended harmlessly, and some of the experimental animals died.

In 2019, Elon Musk announced his intention to obtain US regulatory approval to conduct an experiment on humans by the end of 2020, but Neuralink has still not been able to do this. Musk is even rumored to have approached rival Synchron for investment as the human testing startup has moved on. According to the developers, such chips will make it possible to give mobility to people with impaired motor functions, or help in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease or dementia.





Meta* threatened to block news content in Canada.
October 24, 2022

Meta*, the parent company of Facebook*, said it could block Canadians from sharing news content on the social network if the government's earlier bill C-18, the Online News Act, is passed. This law was modeled on the Media Negotiation Code adopted in Australia in early 2021.

The Online News Act requires media platforms to pay Canadian news outlets for the content they publish. And just like in Australia, Meta* is now threatening Canadians with a ban.

In a blog post published on Friday, Meta* said it may have to decide whether to continue to allow the exchange of news content in Canada. The threat came after the House of Commons Heritage Committee failed to invite the company to discuss the law. The commission heard representatives of Google, but only after the request of the company to include it in the circle of participants in the discussion.

“We have always approached our engagement with the Canadian government on this law in the spirit of honest and fair debate, and as such have been surprised not to have been invited to participate (in the discussion), especially given lawmakers' public comments that this law aims to Facebook*,” said Meta*.

Legislator Pablo Rodriguez, head of the Canadian Department of Heritage, accused Meta* of using the same scenario as in Australia.

Among other arguments, Meta* claims that news content is not a significant source of income for her. Following the adoption of the News Media Negotiation Code in Australia, Meta* briefly restricted users' access to local news content, but ended up signing agreements with news outlets such as News Corp Australia.

* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which a court has made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 “On Counteracting Extremist Activity”.





Elon Musk's Twitter deal threatens to disrupt the leveraged buyout market.
October 23, 2022

Billionaire Elon Musk's inconsistency in pursuing the deal to buy Twitter made life difficult for Morgan Stanley, Bank of America and Barclays, which agreed to finance the acquisition with a $13 billion loan. The banks delayed selling Musk's debt to investors for fear of incurring losses.

Due to uncertainty over Twitter's financial health, as well as Musk's unpredictable approach to the deal, investors have been slow to buy his debt. Therefore, according to sources, banks will not resell the debt, which is usually practiced in such transactions, but will keep it on their balance sheet until investors have a desire to buy it.

The deadline for the parties to the transaction to close it without further litigation is October 28. But so far, neither Musk's plans for a new Twitter leadership nor its future business plan are known. Therefore, many debt investors are holding back from taking action until they have more information on the matter.

In addition, the debt package on the deal with Twitter consists of loans with a "junk" rating, which also explains the caution of investors. Due to rising interest rates and higher market volatility, investors prefer not to deal with junk-rated debt. For example, a group of banks led by Bank of America posted a $700 million loss in September on the sale of about $4.55 billion in debt related to the acquisition of business software developer Citrix Systems by Vista Equity Partners and Elliott Investment using borrowed money.

Also in September, a group of banks stopped trying to sell about $4 billion of debt financing for Apollo Global Management Inc's Lumen Technologies asset purchase due to the fact that it could not find buyers.

As a rule, the bank immediately sells the debt and starts the next transaction. But since the money is used to secure the Elon Musk deal, the banks do not have free funds to support the next deal. And this means that their activity in the market of borrowed funds has noticeably decreased, which threatens its functioning.





Elon Musk and Twitter are actively preparing to close the deal to buy the company.
October 23, 2022

Bankers and lawyers for Elon Musk and Twitter are actively preparing the necessary documents in an attempt to ensure that the company's takeover deal is closed by the end of the month. The court gave the parties until October 28.

After several months of mutual attacks and accusations, the businessman and the social network managed to resolve the differences, and now the priority for them is to close the deal, not litigation. Wall Street banks, led by Morgan Stanley, who side with Musk, are preparing debt financing totaling about $13 billion. Management at one of the banks told employees that loan documents would come from the billionaire this coming Tuesday.

The reasons for the sudden warming of relations between Twitter and Musk are still unclear. Back in early October, the deal could have failed when the businessman reported some difficulties in obtaining borrowed funds, although the banks were ready to fulfill their obligations in April. He also, to the last, wanted to retain the right to take legal action against Twitter, in which the company was accused of fraud and providing false information about the share of bots on the platform.

However, Musk subsequently changed his mind, and the judge agreed to postpone and eventually cancel the hearing originally scheduled for October 17 in the businessman's purchase of Twitter if the deal is completed by October 28. Subsequently, the businessman said that the social network has "incredible potential", although at a price of $ 54.20 per share, he clearly overpays.

Musk's plans for Twitter after the closing of the deal have not yet been announced, although some sources make rather gloomy forecasts: The Washington Post, for example, is sure that the billionaire will cut up to 75% of the company's employees in order to double revenues within three years. It is assumed that he is going to return to the platform many celebrities blocked on it, including former US President Donald Trump. Musk himself initially did not rule out some reduction in staff, although the administration of the platform itself stated that there would be no mass layoffs until the deal was closed.

Finally, the banks that agreed to provide loans to buy Twitter initially intended to raise funding from outside players, but due to Musk's unpredictability and the instability of the debt markets, they seem to have to raise funds from their own funds in order to try to sell his obligations later. Since April, the situation has changed, and in relation to the current disposition, banks' losses on this loan may exceed $500 million. The only consolation for financial organizations will be the interest on the loan.





Interpol created its own meta universe.
October 23, 2022

This week, New Delhi hosted a meeting of the 90th General Assembly of the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol). As part of this ball event, "the world's first metaverse specifically created for law enforcement" is presented.

Interpol noted that the organization was prompted to develop the metaverse by the fact that attackers are already using this technology to commit crimes. It was also important that, according to expectations, the level of acceptance of virtual worlds by society will steadily increase over the coming years.

“As the number of Metaverse users grows and technology advances, the list of possible crimes will expand and potentially include crimes against children, data theft, money laundering, financial fraud, counterfeiting, ransomware distribution, phishing, sexual harassment,” they said. at Interpol.

The Interpol Metaverse will allow law enforcement officials from different countries to interact with each other through the use of virtual avatars. In addition, it is planned to be used for courses on forensic investigations and other activities. To interact with the metaverse, a VR headset is used, and the connection itself is carried out through a secure cloud service of the department. Interpol hopes that the use of virtual space will allow for more efficient and effective interaction between units from different countries.





The first commercial quantum computer in the United States will be received by the medical company Cleveland Clinic - it will accelerate the creation of new drugs.
October 19, 2022

IBM announced that, together with the medical company Cleveland Clinic, it began to deploy the first commercial quantum computer in the United States. The installation of IBM Quantum System One will start operating in early 2023. It will help accelerate the development of new drugs and much more, which will give a sharp impetus to research in the field of medicine and biotechnology.

“We cannot afford to continue to spend a decade or more going from a research idea in the lab to bringing drugs to market. Quantum technologies offer a future to change this pace, especially in the fields of drug discovery and machine learning,” said Lara Jehi, MD and Chief Scientific Information Officer of the Cleveland Clinic.

Up to this point, IBM has only installed its "world's first commercial quantum systems," Quantum System One, in academic institutions, one each in the US, Germany, Japan, and South Korea. In the original, this is a system of 20 superconducting qubits, of which only a few of them can be entangled at the same time. The 27-qubit system left for Japan. South Korea probably also had a 27-qubit Quantum System One computer installed. Installation options for Cleveland Clinic are not reported.

Cleveland Clinic, as one of the largest medical centers in the US, has been systematically collaborating with IBM for about 10 years. As part of the joint effort, the Discovery Accelerator has been created at the company's facilities, using advanced IBM computing technologies to accelerate critical research in the field of treatments and vaccines. These are clouds, AI, machine learning and much more, which promises to shorten the path from an idea to a finished result many times over. Quantum computing will be a new and revolutionary tool for accelerating medical research that could define the future of healthcare.





ASML says new US sanctions against China won't hurt its business.
October 19, 2022

The quarterly reports of the world's largest supplier of lithographic scanners, the Dutch holding ASML, are being studied by investors no less closely than the reports of contract chip manufacturer TSMC. ASML representatives at the reporting event announced the achievement of a number of financial records, and also stated that they do not expect a significant impact on their business from new US anti-China sanctions.

Recall that earlier this month, US authorities limited the supply to China of a certain range of lithographic equipment that is suitable for the production of 16-nm and more advanced products. In the case of RAM chips, the limitation passed along the 18 nm line, and in the case of flash memory chips, the equipment should not allow the production of chips with more than 128 layers.

ASML management, according to Reuters, does not see a threat to the existing shipments of its equipment to China, which provide the company with about 16% of revenue, according to 2021 data. The fact is that ASML lithographic scanners are produced in Europe and do not contain a large number of components of American origin. In fact, the company explained, it retains the ability to ship equipment to China that is unsuitable for ultra-hard ultraviolet (EUV) radiation.

In addition, ASML continues to lag behind the demand for its equipment, so even if it cannot offer some items to Chinese customers, they will be bought by customers from other countries. In general, the Dutch authorities have already controlled the export of such equipment to China since 2019, so ASML does not have to get used to the effect of sanctions in this area.

Among other relevant risk factors, ASML CEO Peter Wennink mentioned inflation, customer uncertainty about the future and the risk of a global recession. Demand for the company's products remains high, ASML already has an order book of around 30 billion euros. In the third quarter alone, 8.9 billion euros in orders were received. The company's net profit in the last quarter reached 1.7 billion euros, revenue amounted to 5.8 billion euros, which was higher than analysts' expectations.





Toshiba privatization delayed due to deal financing issues.
October 17, 2022

The original intention of Toshiba's management was that by November 7, potential participants in the buyout of shares of the corporation from the market will provide their letters of assurance, but the reluctance of creditors to allocate the necessary amount to the participants in the process may further delay preparations for this transaction.

Toshiba's assets, valued at $16 billion, are now being bid for by two consortiums led by Japan Industrial Partners and Japan Investment Corp. respectively. Inflation and changes in the US monetary policy have made borrowing expensive, and so far lenders are not ready to finance the purchase of Toshiba shares by the mentioned consortia of investors. Among the Japanese credit institutions, only four organizations showed their interest in financing the transaction. At the same time, creditors are not yet ready to provide complete information about the structure of the upcoming transaction, so they cannot claim the prompt allocation of the necessary funds.

Such difficulties, according to informed sources, may push Toshiba to abandon the privatization in favor of selling only part of its assets. The leadership of the Japanese corporation has already done a lot to prepare for privatization. In June, a new board of directors was approved, and representatives of hedge funds interested in restructuring Toshiba's business were included in its composition. In the summer, the company's capitalization was estimated at $22 billion, now it has decreased to $16 billion, and so far there is no certainty that Toshiba's management in the current situation will not signal intentions to postpone privatization in order to receive a larger amount.





China launches GeForce RTX 4090 graphics card with bubble level.
October 17, 2022

A small Chinese company 51RISC introduced the GeForce RTX 4090 Maximus X graphics card, which stands out for having a pair of bubble levels - perhaps this is the first graphics card in the world with such equipment. So the manufacturer took care of the problem of sagging video card. Or it can be used in construction.

As you know, many large video cards under their own weight begin to sag in the PCI Express slot. This, in general, should not harm either the card or the motherboard, but for many this is at least annoying. Yes, and there are times when a graphics accelerator can break the PCIe connector. And with the new GeForce RTX 4090, the problem seems to be especially relevant, because almost all of these video cards are very large and heavy.

To fix the problem, many users come up with their own solutions, or buy ready-made props. And 51RISC decided to simplify the task of installing the video card absolutely straight by adding bubble levels (for some reason, two at once) to the side of the accelerator.

Otherwise, this is an unremarkable GeForce RTX 4090. It is built on a reference PCB and is not factory overclocked. The cooling system here is non-standard, it has three fans and takes exactly three expansion slots. At the same time, the 51RISC GeForce RTX 4090 Maximus X is being sold for a fabulous $2827.





Arm is taking revenge on Qualcomm for criticizing NVIDIA deal by demanding compensation for using Nuvia licenses.
October 16, 2022

At the beginning of last year, Qualcomm bought the assets of Nuvia processor developer Nuvia for $1.4 billion, which used the Arm architecture and held the corresponding licenses. According to Arm itself, this deal does not give Qualcomm the right to dispose of all licenses inherited from Nuvia. A dispute broke out between the companies, which they are trying to resolve in court. Qualcomm believes that Arm is taking revenge on it for criticizing the deal with NVIDIA.

Recall that in the spring of this year, NVIDIA was forced to abandon its intention to buy Arm, as this was opposed by individual regulators, British officials and a variety of companies among Arm's customers. Among them was Qualcomm, and this summer it faced a lawsuit from a British developer who accused it of misusing licenses for processor cores inherited from Nuvia. The latter had a license for the Arm v8 architecture, which Qualcomm also had, but Arm did not like this interaction logic, and it demanded that this client stop using Nuvia developments in their products. According to Arm, after the purchase of Nuvia, Qualcomm should have concluded a new licensing agreement with the first of the companies.

Qualcomm does not consider this correct and necessary, calling Arm's claims revenge for its own position on the deal with NVIDIA, which fell apart in the spring. Arm not only demanded a surcharge for Qualcomm's right to use Nuvia's designs, but also tried to prevent Qualcomm's specialists from working on processors that use Nuvia's intellectual property. Representatives of Qualcomm also added that the original agreement between Arm and Nuvia did not provide for such control measures by the British holding. Arm also believes that after the loss of independence by Nuvia, all previous agreements have lost their force, and the new owners of the business in the person of Qualcomm must enter into new contracts.

In general, Qualcomm should pay Arm more for off-the-shelf solutions, and in the case of using their own developments based on the Arm architecture, the license fee is reduced. Apparently, in the Nuvia precedent, the British developer simply does not want Qualcomm to pay him less. The victory of Arm in this legal dispute, according to Qualcomm, can untie her hands in the abuse of her own powers in relations with licensees.





South Korea is ready to follow US anti-China sanctions, but will do so with caution.
October 16, 2022

Last week, it became known that the South Korean companies SK hynix and Samsung Electronics received the right to supply their Chinese enterprises with all the necessary equipment of American origin for the next 12 months without obtaining export licenses from the US regulatory authorities. At the same time, it is not clear from the statements of the Minister of Commerce of South Korea that the Korean side is fully satisfied with the current situation.

Korean Minister of Commerce Ahn Duk-geun admitted that the American side made sanctions relief for Samsung Electronics and SK hynix in terms of anti-China sanctions, based on the understanding of the importance of the Chinese enterprises of both companies in stabilizing global supply chains. Now the efforts of Korean officials are aimed at further improving the working conditions of these companies, taking into account the continuation of US sanctions. The South Korean authorities, in particular, are trying to impress their American colleagues with the idea that the production of those components that can be used exclusively in civilian products such as the same cars should be removed from the US export restrictions. Moreover, there is still a shortage of components in this sector.

Korean manufacturers, according to the minister, are now trying to assess the scale of the impact of anti-Chinese sanctions on their business. The country's authorities would like to keep up with the pace at which the US is pursuing its plans to reform semiconductor supply chains, but they are committed to mutually beneficial cooperation that would take into account the special circumstances in which the South Korean industry finds itself. Apparently, the Korean minister is referring to the high degree of dependence of Korean exports on China. The country of morning freshness covers up to 45% of China's need for imports of memory chips, including locally produced products. South Korea as a whole accounts for up to 15.9% of the volume of imports of technical products to China. Taiwan is in first place with 25.2%, but the interests of South Korea should not be written off either. As Ahn Duk Geun admitted, "China and Korea remain very important trading partners for each other."





Scientists have recorded the most powerful burst of energy in space ever observed.
October 15, 2022

Scientists have recorded an unprecedented burst of gamma rays (GRB), which at some wavelengths looked brighter than any similar burst of energy observed before. The burst was named GRB 221009A and was first detected by the Fermi Gamma Ray Space Telescope, a joint project between NASA and the US Department of Energy, as well as the space agencies of France, Italy, Japan and Sweden.

Gamma-ray bursts are large-scale cosmic bursts of gamma rays in the electromagnetic spectrum that can result from various phenomena, such as the death of large stars. Such events are the brightest electromagnetic events in the Universe. The recent gamma-ray burst recorded on October 9 was reported by NASA scientists working with the Fermi Gamma-ray Telescope and the Neil Gerels Swift Space Observatory. Some of them called the event "extraordinary" and potentially "the brightest GRB ever".

Astronomer Phil Evans from the University of Leicester said the latest gamma-ray burst "is clearly the brightest GRB we've seen in X-rays." “The new GRB 221009A is about 1,000 times brighter than a typical GRB and several hundred times brighter than the brightest ones observed so far, but this is only true for X-rays. In gamma rays, it is one of the brightest among all GRBs observed,” Evans said.

The gamma-ray burst detector housed in the Fermi telescope is the most prolific GRB detector. On average, it captures one gamma-ray burst per day and has collected data from thousands of such events over about 14 years of operation. “Of the thousands, the October 9 flare was by far the brightest,” said Markos Santander, an astronomer at the University of Alabama. He noted that the flash was so strong that it "blinded the instruments for a while."

Probably, GRB 221009A marks the energetic death of a massive star and its subsequent transformation into a black hole. The event is unparalleled at some wavelengths, in part because it happened about 2 billion light-years from Earth. Despite the fact that the distance seems huge, for gamma-ray bursts it is not. Scientists intend to continue studying this phenomenon in order to understand why the birth of a distant black hole gave rise to such a dazzling cosmic "fireworks".

“The key scientific point here is that we are looking at really extreme physical phenomena - very strong gravity, large masses moving at very high speeds and extremely hot - conditions that cannot be created in the laboratory. The only way to begin to understand this is to study extreme astronomical phenomena such as GRB,” says Phil Evans.





Intel is developing a space optical modem - it will provide communication between different satellites.
October 13, 2022

Intel revealed some details about its work in the Space-Based Adaptive Communications Node (Space-BACN) program of the American Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) - the company is involved in the creation of a universal optical communication system between satellites, including between civilian and military vehicles from different groupings. This is a kind of orbital internet.

Intel is working on the first phase of the program, which in turn is divided into technical areas, and the company is working with the University of Arizona in Technical Area 2 (TA2) to design a configurable optical modem that will support both existing and future standards and communication protocols.

The optical modem consists of three chiplets that will interact using the proprietary EMIB (Embedded Multi-Die Interconnect Bridge) bus and the accompanying AIB (Advanced Interface Bus) chiplet connection technology. A similar layout will get the 14th generation Core processors (Meteor Lake).

The main of the three chiplets acts as a signal processor and error correction unit (DSP / FEC) - it will be produced according to the Intel 3 process technology, which is scheduled for launch in 2023. The second chip will perform the functions of a data converter, a transimpedance amplifier and a driver, and will be produced according to Intel 16 technology standards. And the third chip will be a photonic integrated circuit (PIC) based on technologies from the Israeli company Tower Semiconductor, which is in the process of being acquired by Intel.

There are also basic data regarding other technical areas of the Space-BACN project. Technical Area 1 (TA1) provides for the development of an optical aperture - the “head” that performs pointing and tracking of the signal and is connected by fiber to the TA2 optical modem. Finally, Technical Area 3 (TA3) is devoted to the most important controls and controls for establishing communication between vehicles of different groups - SpaceX, Telesat, SpaceLink, Viasat and Kuiper Government Solutions (owned by Amazon) are selected as participants in this area of ​​the project.

The first phase will build all the necessary components and ensure their interconnection with solutions created within other technical areas. Work at the first stage will take 14 months, after which the project will undergo a technical analysis. Next, some of the companies involved in TA1 and TA2 will move on to a second 18-month phase in which optical terminal building blocks will be developed, and TA3 participants will work out a scheme that provides for more complex and dynamic scenarios. Ultimately, a system will be built that can provide communication between orbiters and any point on the planet, said Sergey Shumaraev, chief engineer and researcher of the Intel Programmable Solutions CTO Group.





Bitcoin Mining Software Receives First Major Update Since 2012.
October 13, 2022

Bitcoin mining software received its first major update since 2012 this week. This will make mining more convenient, as the update includes support for working with an unstable Internet connection, as well as improved security algorithms to ensure that miners receive proper rewards for their work.

The Bitcoin blockchain works according to the proof-of-work algorithm. This means that miners around the world need powerful hardware to mine new coins and validate transactions. In addition to productive equipment, bitcoin mining is accompanied by the consumption of a large amount of energy and the use of specialized software.

Currently, instead of directly accessing the Bitcoin protocol, the vast majority of miners work through the Stratum v1 intermediate protocol, which facilitates communication between the blockchain, miners and mining pools that combine the computing power of the equipment of thousands of people around the world. Miners use this protocol to provide proof of work and receive rewards.

This week, a coalition of developers announced the launch of a new version of the Stratum protocol v2. It will take some time to convince the cryptocurrency community to accept the new protocol, so Spiral, a subsidiary of payment company Block Jack Dorsey, has teamed up with cryptocurrency company Braiins to test and fine-tune the open source software before it goes public.

The head of Spiral Steve Lee told what miners should expect from the upcoming update. Now, as a rule, each mining rig in a large farm is connected directly to the pool, which leads to the consumption of a large amount of energy. At the same time, Stratum v2 supports the creation of a proxy that combines all available installations and establishes only one connection to the mining pool. In addition, the new protocol will reduce the amount of data transferred between miners and pools, which will make cryptocurrency mining more accessible for residents of remote regions where there is no possibility of using broadband Internet access services.

The upgrade is also designed to improve safety. The current version of the protocol is vulnerable to attacks by hackers who are able to steal the hashrate of miners, which can lead to loss of rewards. According to Steve Lee, this problem is solved in Stratum v2, which introduces a standard security mechanism with authentication and encryption when transferring data between miners and pools. At this stage, a test version of the protocol has been released, and its more stable version should appear in November. The updated protocol is likely to become more widespread next year.





Musk said that the Chinese authorities are against the launch of Starlink satellite Internet in the country.
October 12, 2022

Elon Musk delivered a series of policy advice last week that drew controversy and also showed a potential Twitter buyer's willingness to use the platform as a platform. The head of Tesla and SpaceX considers the conflict around Taiwan inevitable, and its consequences severe for the entire global economy. At the same time, the Chinese authorities are opposed to the launch of the Starlink service for Chinese customers, Musk added.

The relevant statements by Elon Musk were made during his interview with the Financial Times, and were also shown on Twitter. The richest man in the world, whom Musk is considered by a number of business publications, called the conflict over Taiwan inevitable, but the businessman is somewhat reassured by the fact that not only his business will suffer as a result. Tesla will face the negative consequences of any conflict, according to the head of the company, but even if the Chinese economy is isolated, the manufacturer expects to continue selling Shanghai-assembled cars in the domestic market of China.

As Musk added, "Apple will face huge challenges, that's for sure." In addition, the entire global economy will show a decline of up to 30% if China becomes involved in the conflict over Taiwan, according to the head of Tesla and SpaceX. Previously, Musk recommended that potential parties to the conflict should allocate Taiwan as an independent administrative zone, following the example of Hong Kong.

Tesla at one time became the only foreign automaker that was allowed to assemble cars in China without the need to create a joint venture with one of the Chinese partners. But even such preferences did not save Elon Musk from the displeasure of the Chinese authorities. According to the head of SpaceX, Chinese officials recently approached him with a demand not to deploy the Starlink satellite Internet infrastructure in China.





Joe Biden urged to organize in the United States a full cycle of production of advanced components.
October 10, 2022

Last week, US President Joseph Biden gave a twenty-minute speech at IBM's $20 billion ceremony to develop a research facility in New York State that will help it advance in the field of quantum computing. In the speech of the American president, emphasis was placed on the development of national industry and reducing dependence on other countries in the field of high technology.

First, Joseph Biden began to look back on the history of manufacturing in New York State, sorting through many local products, from World War I rifles to cough drops, which the president even said he had with him at the time of his speech. He went on to applaud IBM's decision to turn the Hudson Valley into "the epicenter of the future of quantum computing."

Some of Joseph Biden's remarks sounded quite ambitious: “There will be more changes in the next ten years than in the previous forty. Where is it written that we cannot become a global manufacturing center? There are many reasons for optimism." Emphasizing the opportunities that open up for companies that decide to create production in the United States after the adoption of a package of laws to subsidize such activities, the President of the country said: "The supply chain will begin and end here in the United States."

In his speech, Biden also lamented the resistance of some political forces to the adoption of the corresponding package of laws, suspecting China of lobbying its interests. Such rhetoric was intended to demonstrate the determination of the US authorities to strengthen national technological sovereignty.





NASA has created a solid-state battery that is significantly superior to lithium-ion counterparts.
October 10, 2022

US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) researchers working on the Solid-state Architecture Batteries for Enhanced Rechargeability and Safety (SABERS) project have made progress in developing an innovative battery that is lighter, more efficient and safer than its peers. currently used in industry. We are talking about a solid-state battery, which in terms of characteristics is significantly superior to lithium-ion counterparts.

Battery performance is a key aspect in the development of sustainable modes of transport such as electric aircraft. Batteries have to store a huge amount of energy needed to power the aircraft, while they must have a small mass and discharge at a certain rate.

To create such a battery, SABERS used innovative materials that had not previously been used in this area. As a result, researchers have made significant progress. Over the past year, they have managed to increase the rate of battery discharge, first by 10 times, and then by another 5 times, bringing development closer to the goal of creating a battery to power the aircraft.

The use of innovative materials has also enabled a number of changes to be made to the design and packaging of solid-state batteries. This helped to reduce their mass and increase their capacity. Instead of placing each individual battery cell in a separate steel case, as is the case with lithium-ion batteries, all SABERS battery cells can be stacked vertically inside one case. Using this approach, the researchers clearly showed that solid-state batteries can power cars with 500 Wh/kg, twice that of today's electric vehicles.

“This design not only eliminates 30-40% of the mass of the battery, but also allows us to double or even triple the energy that it can store, which is far beyond the capabilities of lithium-ion batteries, which are considered cutting-edge,” said Rocco Viggiano, one of the SABERS project participants.

Safety is another key requirement for using batteries in electric aircraft. Unlike lithium-ion batteries, solid-state batteries do not catch fire when physically damaged and can continue to work even in this condition. The SABERS researchers tested their battery at different pressures and temperatures. As a result, it was found that it can operate at temperatures almost twice as high as lithium-ion batteries, and without the need for complex cooling systems.





Smaller, quieter and cheaper: Microsoft released the second version of the mini fridge in the form of Xbox Series X.
October 9, 2022

Microsoft has released the second version of the Xbox Series X-style mini fridge, said Aaron Greenberg, Vice President of Xbox Marketing. Now the refrigerator can be bought in the American distribution network Walmart.

A mini fridge at Walmart is only $79. According to Greenberg, in the future it will appear on sale in other countries. The second version of the device is smaller than the first - only 8 cans fit in it. In addition, the new refrigerator is quieter.

From a technical point of view, the Mini-Me Xbox Series X Mini Fridge is a 4.5-liter thermoelectric refrigerator for home or car. It holds up to eight soda cans and has one snack shelf inside the door. The device plugs into a standard wall or car socket and cools food down to 2 degrees Celsius. It also has a USB port (5 volts and 2.1 A) for charging your phone or controller.

The first version of the mini-refrigerator will be sold on a par with the new one for some time. Recall that it entered the market almost a year ago at a price of $99.





In new markets, NIO will focus on leasing electric vehicles.
October 9, 2022

Formally, the Chinese brand NIO already offers its electric vehicles on the European continent, having established deliveries through official channels to Norway, but further expansion in this region will not be associated with the sale of cars in ownership, but with their provision on lease. At the same time, the possibility of localizing the production of traction batteries in Europe is being considered.

NIO CEO William Li spoke about this in an interview with Reuters. Now the Chinese company is preparing to bring its electric vehicles to the markets of Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden and Denmark, but it will not sell them to customers, but will sell them by subscription and leasing. The monthly fee for using an electric car with a traction battery capacity of 75 kWh will vary from 1199 to 1295 euros. The minimum contract period will be one month, so customers will actually have the opportunity to take a long test drive to see if they need an electric car on a permanent basis.

In new European markets, NIO will offer three models of electric vehicles: ET7, ET5 and the EL7 crossover, which in China bears the designation ES7, but in Europe this designation is assigned to Audi. Starting production in 2018, NIO has so far sold just under 250,000 electric vehicles in China and Norway. Previously, NIO had already offered to lease traction batteries for its electric vehicles, in which case only the vehicle remained the property of the buyer, and he could regularly change the battery for a charged one at special stations. By the way, at least 120 such stations will be installed in Europe by the end of next year. The client does not even need to get out of the car to change the battery - the automation will do everything by itself in a few minutes, and the trip can be continued with an already charged battery.

Last month, NIO set up production of battery replacement stations in Hungary. If the volume of sales of electric vehicles in Europe exceeds 10 GWh in the equivalent of battery capacity, then NIO will also think about localizing the production of the batteries themselves in Europe. Now it is supplied with batteries by the Chinese company CATL, which is the world market leader, but NIO also has a team of 700 specialists responsible for organizing the production of batteries on its own. Already next year, the company may announce cooperation with new partners in this area. According to the head of NIO, all major manufacturers of electric vehicles will eventually begin to produce traction batteries on their own.

In Norway and China, the company will continue to sell electric vehicles to the property, since in the first case it is more beneficial for customers in terms of taxation, and in the second case, restrictions on the number of license plates issued by local authorities for vehicle registration remain.





Taiwan is ready to contribute in every possible way to the implementation of US sanctions against China.
October 9, 2022

The specifics of the US legal requirements in the field of export control are such that the authorities may prohibit third countries from cooperating with unwanted counterparties, and in the case of new sanctions against China, American partners may once again draw Taiwan into the orbit of their interests. The authorities of the island have already expressed their readiness to contribute in every possible way to compliance with the new US requirements.

Recall that US lawmakers ended the outgoing week by adopting a new package of sanctions against China. It limits the supply to China of components for supercomputers of a certain performance, equipment for the production of chips of a certain range, as well as components for the creation of such equipment. The list of counterparties with a dubious reputation included 31 Chinese companies that the United States suspects of using technologies and products of American origin for the needs of the Chinese defense industry. Companies are given 60 days to pass an audit conducted by American inspectors, and if the latter are not allowed to enter industrial facilities of interest to them, then the company will finally fall into the sanctions list.

Some market participants are now expressing concern that, in terms of supercomputer performance, the activities of large Chinese civil-sector companies such as Alibaba and ByteDance, for example, may be subject to restrictions. The latter is the owner of the world-famous TikTok service, creating server systems that, in terms of their parameters, are capable of approaching “sanctions”. In fact, the US authorities want to prevent the emergence in China of supercomputers capable of delivering more than 100 petaflops of computing power with a volume of less than 1178 cubic meters. On the one hand, many civilian systems that will be created in China in the next couple of years will be able to fall under this criterion. On the other hand, designers will have an incentive to be flexible in the layout of such systems. For example, the system can be divided into several smaller nodes, which will be geographically dispersed, but will communicate through a high-speed optical interface.

Expressing solidarity with the US authorities, representatives of the Taiwan Ministry of Economics demonstrated their willingness to comply with the requirements of the laws of those countries in which the headquarters of foreign customers working with Taiwanese companies are located. According to Taiwanese officials, following the requirements of the law is very important. TSMC and UMC remain the largest contract manufacturers of semiconductor components in Taiwan, but they cannot make personal statements on this topic yet, as they are preparing to publish quarterly reports. However, the example of the introduction of US sanctions against Huawei under President Donald Trump shows that TSMC will not hesitate to restrict the access of Chinese customers to its services in accordance with new US requirements. Taiwan's Economy Minister Wang Mei-hua will travel to the United States next week to meet with major clients of Taiwanese companies and discuss, among other things, the impact of geopolitical developments on business.





Memory chip makers struggle to counter declining demand and falling prices.
October 9, 2022

With several consecutive months of declining prices for electronic components, major memory chip makers, including Samsung Electronics and Micron Technology, issued gloomy forecasts and lowered their already low earnings estimates. Other companies have announced plans to cut production to avoid further saturating the market. Top managers of companies and industry analysts believe that until the middle of next year we should not expect either an end or even a slowdown in price decline.

Memory chips, which are used in smartphones, PCs and servers, are one of the key indicators of health for the semiconductor industry, and are seeing a transition from pandemic-driven growth to a sharp drop in demand. Between July and September, the average contract prices for the two main types of memory, DRAM and NAND, fell by 15% and 28%, respectively, TrendForce analysts calculated. As excess inventories accumulate, this trend will remain relevant in the fourth quarter of this year and throughout the next year, and only by the end of 2023 should we expect a slowdown or even a complete cessation of the negative dynamics.

Samsung, the world's largest memory chip maker, recently reported that its third-quarter operating income fell 32%, according to preliminary data. At the end of September, its American competitor Micron presented a report that was by no means positive, and the forecast for the current quarter turned out to be rather restrained. SK Hynix, the world's second largest memory chip company in terms of revenue, is poised to report a 40% year-on-year drop in revenue, FactSet analysts are sure.

Prices for memory chips began to fall at the end of last year. Compared to other semiconductor components, they are less differentiated, so demand fluctuations are felt especially sharply here. Memory accounts for 27% of the semiconductor industry's $619 billion in 2022 revenue, Gartner analysts say — the market also includes processors and image sensors, with Samsung, SK Hynix, Micron and Intel being the biggest players. In general, the industry showed sharp growth with the advent of the pandemic, but this year the situation has changed: inflation and geopolitics have become powerful negative factors, which, in turn, have brought down the demand for PCs, smartphones and gaming devices.

Following the segment of memory chips, other areas of the electronic components market are also beginning to show negative dynamics: AMD reported that in the third quarter, revenue would be significantly lower than expected. The stock market also demonstrates pessimism: on the eve of AMD shares lost 13% of their value, NVIDIA securities fell by 7%, and Micron - by more than 3%. Another powerful negative factor was the new sanctions imposed by the United States against China. However, there is a way to stop the decline in performance - a reduction in production, and the Japanese Kioxia has already resorted to it, promising in October to reduce the production of memory chips by 30%.

Micron CEO Sanjay Mehrotra recently said the company will cut production costs and cut shipments in the short term, though the memory market will still be poised for significant growth over the next decade. The company's capital expenditure for the current fiscal year will be $8 billion, 30% lower than a year earlier. At the same time, in the long term, the industry still expects growth - the same Micron is preparing to spend up to $ 100 billion on a new DRAM production plant in New York State. Large investments are also being considered at Intel, Samsung and TSMC.

At the same time, one of the top managers of Samsung recently noted that the company's policy does not provide for a deliberate reduction in production, and there is no need to abandon this strategy yet. SK Hynix does not give a direct answer to a similar question, but speaks of its readiness to pursue a flexible policy depending on market trends.





In terms of maintainability smartphone Pixel 7 Pro has not become better than its predecessor.
October 9, 2022

Earlier this week, Google officially unveiled the new Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro smartphones. Although a little time has passed since then, the first videos with new devices have already appeared on the Internet, including videos with disassembly of devices. On the PBKReviews YouTube channel, a blogger disassembled the Pixel 7 Pro to see how easy it is to repair the device. It turned out that in terms of maintainability, the new flagship is not much different from its predecessor.

Like the previous generation model, the new Pixel 7 Pro is equipped with a screen that is connected to the motherboard with a single cable. The design uses more screws, and access to some internal components has become more difficult. It was also found that the back cover is so securely connected to the case frame that the blogger was unable to detach it. Although the battery has notches for removing it from the case, it will not be possible to do this without isopropyl alcohol, since it is glued.

Note that the blogger did not check whether the fingerprint scanner calibration procedure is required after replacing the screen. In last year's Pixel 6 Pro, such a nuance was present. In general, for maintainability, Pixel 7 Pro received a score of 5.5 points out of 10 from the authors of the channel. A year earlier, the Pixel 6 Pro received a similar score from bloggers.





TrendForce analysts assessed the potential consequences of new US sanctions against China.
October 9, 2022

On the eve of the US Department of Commerce announced the introduction of new restrictions in the field of semiconductor production in China. Sanctions now apply not only to logic circuits, but also to memory chips. Permission to supply equipment for the production of chips must now be obtained not only by Chinese, but also by foreign enterprises located on the territory of the PRC. In addition, the policy of supplying China with chips that can be used for military purposes is being tightened.

US sanctions affected logic components manufactured according to 16, 14 nm and more advanced solutions (including FinFET and GAAFET technologies), DRAM chips from 18 nm or less, as well as 128-layer and more advanced NAND chips, TrendForce analytical company notes.

The new sanctions package will affect China-based U.S. enterprises operating at 16nm and below, a number of Chinese companies, including the HuaHong Group, and other foreign companies based in China, all of which will need to obtain approval from the U.S. Department of Commerce before delivering manufacturing equipment. Therefore, most of China's factories and TSMC's Nanjing factory will expand production to 28nm and beyond. China, on the other hand, is actually cut off from external support for solutions more progressive than 16 nm.

The new restrictive measures will expand the effect of previously imposed sanctions, due to which the American companies NVIDIA and AMD have lost the ability to supply accelerators necessary for the operation of artificial intelligence systems to China - now the restrictions also apply to central processors. At the same time, sanctioned products will probably no longer be produced in China. Now, most of the components related to the high-performance computing segment are produced by TSMC - while using technologies of 5, 7 and in some cases 12 nm. This will have a negative impact on TSMC's future contracts, TrendForce analysts are sure.

In accordance with the updated standards, equipment that allows the production of DRAM chips using technologies up to 18 nm inclusive is subject to verification. This will significantly limit the development of the DRAM sector in the country, primarily hitting the company CXMT, which leads the segment in China. In Q2, it was going to move from 19 nm to 17 nm technology, and a significant part of the equipment was purchased even before the imposition of sanctions, but its volume is insufficient; the joint project of the company with SMIC is also under threat. The sanctions will affect the C2 plant, which the Korean SK hynix built in the city of Wuxi - the plant accounts for approximately 13% of all DRAM production capacity, and each stage of its modernization must now be endorsed by Washington. At the same time, the world's three leading manufacturers of DRAM chips plan to increase production capacity in their countries in the next decade and reduce their presence in China.

The US sanctions also affected equipment used for the production of NAND memory on chips up to 128 layers inclusive. This, TrendForce analysts are sure, will affect the long-term plans of the Chinese YMTC to modernize its production facilities, as well as the development of Samsung and Solidigm factories located in the country. At the same time, YMTC will not be able to expand its customer base - it will be more difficult for foreign customers to consider it as a supplier.





Additional US export restrictions won't hurt NVIDIA's position in the Chinese market.
October 8, 2022

For NVIDIA, the main innovation of the American authorities in relation to trade with China was the restriction on the supply of components that allow creating supercomputer systems capable of delivering more than 100 petaflops from an area of not more than 600 m2. According to representatives of NVIDIA, such a rule will not significantly worsen the position of the company compared to the previous stage of export restrictions.

Last month, we recall, NVIDIA management had to admit that a ban on the supply of computing accelerators with a performance level higher than A100 to China would deprive it of about $ 400 million in revenue. In the future, the company obtained permission from the US authorities to continue deliveries of A100 accelerators to China until March 2023, and H100 accelerators until September of the same year. Thus, after the introduction of additional restrictions this week, NVIDIA's position will not be able to significantly worsen, as company representatives make clear.

NVIDIA founder Jensen Huang said during his recent speech that even after the September wave of sanctions, the Chinese market will continue to make a significant contribution to the company's revenue. This week it also became known about the decision of NVIDIA to liquidate the official representative office in Russia, offering employees the opportunity to move to another country while maintaining their jobs. In the spring, NVIDIA management estimated the degree of influence of the Russian market on the company's total revenue literally in a few percent, and the gaming direction for this supplier of graphic solutions was more important than the server one.





New US sanctions cut off China from advanced chips and equipment for their production.
October 8, 2022

The US authorities, as predicted, ended the week by expanding sanctions against the Chinese semiconductor industry, and also limited the supply of supercomputer components to China. In the latter case, any components that allow Chinese customers to create a supercomputer with a performance of more than 100 petaflops fall under the ban. Equipment for the production of chips in China will also be supplied in a limited range.

The new rules prohibit the supply to China from anywhere in the world of components manufactured using American-origin technologies if they can be used to create a computing system with a performance level of more than 100 petaflops, occupying an area of not more than 600 m2. According to experts, such a restriction will hurt many Chinese companies that are building data centers for civilian use.

Of the 31 Chinese companies and organizations that were added to the unreliable list yesterday, 28 were already under US sanctions, but now the procedure for obtaining licenses and approvals will be restarted for exporters. If within 60 days a Chinese company from the new list can prove to the US authorities that it does not abuse the imported components it receives, then it has a chance for rehabilitation. Such examples, it must be said, are available - the Chinese company Wuxi Biologics, which produces AstraZeneca vaccine components, has already passed an audit at its plant in Wuxi, and now it has to carry out a similar procedure at its plant in Shanghai in order to leave the list of dubious importers of products of American origin.

In the event that a Chinese company that has come under suspicion cannot allow American auditors to enter its enterprises, or refuses to comply with the relevant procedures, it will automatically be blacklisted. It will be difficult for US exporters to work with such companies, each of the contracts will have to apply for a special export license, and in relation to such a Chinese counterparty, the US Department of Commerce will proceed from the “presumption of guilt” when issuing licenses.

YMTC (Yangtze Memory), which is China's largest manufacturer of solid-state memory, is still on the list of companies that are prohibited from receiving equipment for the production of advanced semiconductor components from the United States. Founded in 2016, by now it has literally come one step closer to the world leaders in terms of its technological capabilities. New U.S. sanctions make it impossible for YMTC to purchase equipment that can be used to manufacture 3D NAND chips with more than 128 layers.

For chip exports to China, the new rules will come into effect on October 21. The United States reserves the right to block the delivery to China of any components that can be used in advanced computing systems, including artificial intelligence solutions. TSMC, for example, will be required to stop manufacturing processors for server systems developed by Chinese customers if they were created using US-origin technologies and software. In any case, since TSMC uses the corresponding American-made equipment, it will have to stop serving such Chinese customers.

As already noted, the export to China of equipment that allows the production of integrated circuits using 14-nm technology using the structure of FinFET transistors will be prohibited. For RAM chips, the supply of equipment that allows them to be manufactured using 18 nm technology or more modern is prohibited. In the case of solid-state memory, the number of layers in a microcircuit is limited - there should be no more than 128 of them. According to the logic of the US authorities, such restrictions should keep the Chinese semiconductor industry at the current level of technological development.

Also, US citizens are prohibited from servicing Chinese customers who are on the list mentioned above. Along the way, the supply to China of components that allow local manufacturers to create lithographic equipment for the production of chips that meet more advanced criteria than those listed in the previous paragraph will be limited. US officials note that the measures taken can only be effective if the country's foreign policy partners express solidarity in limiting the supply of relevant goods to China. In semiconductor manufacturing, almost the entire world depends on American-origin technology, but there are rare exceptions that will not be subject to US export control regulations. Ideally, the US authorities would like to block this supply channel to China as well.





Meta* reported a possible data breach of about 1 million Facebook* users.
October 8, 2022

Meta* Platforms reported on Friday that data from approximately 1 million Facebook* users may have been compromised due to security issues with third-party apps downloaded from Apple and Alphabet's online stores.

This year, the company's security service identified more than 400 malicious apps for Android and iOS (355 for Android, 47 for iOS) that, under the guise of photo editors and other services, stole Facebook login credentials from users*. About 40% of the apps were disguised as photo-editing tools, according to a security report, with the rest falling into other categories, including mobile games, lifestyle apps, health trackers, business utilities, and VPNs.

Meta* noted that it has already informed Apple and Google about the problem. In turn, Apple and Google reported that they had removed all the malicious applications in question.

The company also plans to notify more than a million users of a possible data breach. David Agranovich, Meta*'s director of threats, told reporters that his team could not determine the exact number of affected Facebook* users because the attacks took place on their personal devices.

Meta* advised users to be wary of apps that offer to set up an account using Facebook* login. “If a flashlight app requires you to sign in with Facebook* before it gives you any flashlight features, it's probably suspicious,” says Agranovic.

* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





Two Americans, a Japanese and a Russian woman arrived on the ISS as part of the SpaceX Crew-5 mission.
October 7, 2022

The international crew of the SpaceX Crew-5 mission arrived at the International Space Station. The Falcon 9 rocket carrying the Crew Dragon capsule lifted off on October 5 from pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. After 29 hours of flight, the ship, named Endurance, reached its goal.

The final stage of the rendezvous of the Crew-5 manned mission spacecraft with the ISS started the day before at 16:16 US East Coast time (23:16 Moscow time), and the docking took place automatically at 0:01 Moscow time already on October 7 - at this time the ship and the station flew over the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of West Africa. Hatches between Endurance and the ISS and 10 minutes later the Crew-5 crew boarded the orbital laboratory.

The crew included NASA astronauts Nicole Mann and Josh Cassada, Japanese astronaut Koichi Wakata, and Roscosmos cosmonaut Anna Kikina — they will stay on the ISS for five months. Commander Mann and flight specialist Kikina were pioneers in their own way: Mann is the first Native American woman in space, Kikina is the first Russian cosmonaut to fly on the SpaceX Dragon spacecraft. They and pilot Kasada were in space for the first time, while flight specialist Wakata had already been in orbit five times.

The reusable Dragon Endurance has already been used to send the Crew-3 mission to the ISS and return it to Earth. SpaceX has four Crew Dragon capsules, which are repaired and tested before each subsequent flight. This time, the ship received a new nose cone, heat shield and parachutes before departure. SpaceX is also famous for reusable rockets, but the Falcon 9 rocket used in the Crew-5 mission received a new first stage.

The crew of the new mission will join the seven crew members aboard the ISS, four of whom arrived as part of the SpaceX Crew-4, and are expected to return to Earth in about a week, although the exact time will depend on weather conditions.





Twitter v Elon Musk trial could be overturned if he buys the company by October 28.
October 7, 2022

The decisive hearing in the Twitter dispute with Elon Musk was scheduled to begin on October 17, and in five working days the judge had to either force the billionaire to buy the social network, or release him from this obligation. Now, after Musk re-agreed to buy Twitter at $54.20 per share, the judge is willing to cancel the mid-October meeting, but subject to the buyer's willingness to complete the deal by October 28.

Judge Kathaleen McCormick made the corresponding statement the day before, having received the necessary documents from representatives of both Twitter and Elon Musk. The first ones, it must be said, were distrustful of this initiative and stated that the cancellation of the court session would be used by Elon Musk to further delay the process of processing the transaction and the possibility of its complete failure under one pretext or another. The judge provided insurance in this regard - if by October 28 Elon Musk cannot buy Twitter, then the legal proceedings will resume in November.

Twitter lawyers exacerbated the nervousness of the situation, citing an anonymous representative of one of the investment banks involved in preparing financial resources for the deal with Elon Musk. The informant explained that initially the billionaire was supposed to receive financial guarantees by July, but then he refused the deal with Twitter, and now he still has not confirmed his readiness to make a new loan for the relevant needs, although he claims that he will buy the company's assets at the agreed in April conditions. According to representatives of Twitter, the parties were originally supposed to agree on the terms of the deal by October 10, but now a new date is not being discussed. Under these conditions, the initiative was taken by the judge, who ordered Elon Musk to complete the deal by October 28, otherwise the judicial investigation would resume. Such terms were proposed in the appeal of Musk's lawyers.





Musk's purchase of Twitter is again in doubt - you need to solve the problem with a loan of $ 13 billion.
October 7, 2022

Talks between Elon Musk and Twitter executives over a $44 billion takeover deal for the social network have partially stalled, according to people familiar with the matter, as the billionaire claims it is now dependent on getting a $13 billion bank loan.

In a letter sent by Musk's legal team to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the entrepreneur was willing to enter into a deal at a price of $54.20 per share on the original terms "with the expectation of obtaining debt financing."

The parties continue to negotiate to resolve the remaining differences in order to complete the transaction. Once agreed, they are expected to file a motion with the court to end legal proceedings in a lawsuit filed by Twitter after Musk pulled out of the deal.

Musk is also seeking to retain the right to file a fraud lawsuit over Twitter misleading him and other investors about the level of spam and the number of fake accounts, the sources said.

According to the April documentation, seven banks led by Morgan Stanley had to fully cover the loan part of the financing. Banks are unlikely to waive their obligations, even to avoid losses, as this will negatively affect their reputation and may damage their ability to enter into new transactions with investment companies in the future.

The deal could close so quickly that the banks would have to fund their own loan commitments, though they originally planned to sell much of Musk's debt to institutional money managers before the Twitter deal closed.





10 PC browsers you probably didn't know existed.
October 7, 2022

In a huge variety of browsers, there are software solutions that are interesting in their own way, but have not gained wide recognition. Despite being little known, they continue to develop, and most importantly, each of them has its own interesting features and functions.

When it comes to browsers for personal computers, Google Chrome, Apple Safari, Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, Opera immediately come to mind. There is nothing surprising in this: the listed products are among the five most popular web browsers in the world and have a huge army of admirers who sometimes do not even know about the existence of alternative solutions on the market - interesting in their own way and even somewhat original. It is these browsers that are in the shadows that our today's material is dedicated to. All of them are open source and, despite a modest user audience, are actively supported by developers.

Brave
Product website: brave.com.
Codebase: Chromium.
Supported platforms: Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOS.
HTML5test.com results: 528 points (allowable maximum is 555).

A web browser developed with an eye to ensuring confidentiality and privacy when working on the global Web. Brave blocks trackers and site counters, removes intrusive banner ads, and puts under the knife the ubiquitous monitoring systems, behavioral analyzers, cookies and JavaScript scripts that can identify the user. To make it more convincing, the browser shows visual statistics on blocked elements, which is supplemented by information about saved traffic and time for loading pages.
Brave has a lot of other distinctive features as well. Among them: the presence of a built-in crypto wallet, integration with the privacy-oriented search engine Brave Search, support for HTTPS Everywhere, WebTorrent and the decentralized IPFS file system, which functions similarly to peer-to-peer P2P networks. Special mention deserves the Tor client that comes bundled with the browser, which allows you to use online services, securely hiding behind a distributed network of routers that ensure the transfer of user information in such a way that it is impossible to determine at any point where or where the encrypted data is sent.

Browsh
Product website: brow.sh.
Codebase: Firefox.
Supported platforms: Windows, macOS, Linux, FreeBSD.
HTML5test.com test results: 466 points.

A text-based Internet browser with full support for HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript, WebGL, and even video content, which can be viewed in pixel format solely for the sake of sports interest. To work with Browsh, you need Firefox installed on your computer, the engine of which is used by the console browser to render pages. The program is controlled from the keyboard, tabs are supported, it is possible to create screenshots of sites, and also change the User-Agent parameter in case the resource being viewed is optimized for a specific browser. For everyday use, Browsh is hardly suitable, but for working in conditions of low network bandwidth or saving traffic, a text-based web browser may well come in handy.

GNOME Web
Product site: wiki.gnome.org/apps/web.
Codebase: WebKitGTK.
Supported platforms: Linux.
HTML5test.com test results: 448 points.

A browser developed by the GNOME project team, also known by the code name Epiphany. It is positioned as an easy-to-use web browser developed in accordance with the philosophy of the GNOME community, which assumes a rational approach to building a workspace in a Linux environment. It is for this reason that there is nothing superfluous in GNOME Web, and the program interface is implemented with verified asceticism and attention to detail. Among the additional features, we note an ad blocker integrated into the browser and built-in spell checkers, which can be useful when filling out web forms on sites. There is support for PWA (Progressive Web Apps) technology, which allows you to run web services inside the browser as normal native applications - without the address bar and tabs.

LibreWolf and Waterfox
Product websites: librewolf.net and waterfox.net.
Codebase: Firefox.
Supported platforms: Windows, macOS, Linux.
HTML5test.com test results: 466 and 468 points respectively.

Two browsers similar in concept and implemented ideas, which are based on the Firefox code redesigned along and across, from which all components that can be used to track user actions are removed. LibreWolf and Waterfox are not tied to Mozilla services, there are no all kinds of identifiers, tags and telemetry collection, there are no information and search hints in the address bar, as well as support for other unnecessary modules that show network activity - all this is removed in order to ensure maximum user privacy on the Internet. For greater security, both web browsers include optional settings that provide the maximum level of protection. In addition to this, DuckDuckGo, Searx and Qwant search engines are enabled by default, maintaining privacy and not tracking user preferences.

Min
Product website: minbrowser.org.
Codebase: Electron (Chromium).
Supported platforms: Windows, macOS, Linux.
HTML5test.com test results: 476 points.

A browser with a minimalistic interface, the central element of which is the address bar. Through it, almost all actions with the program are carried out, whether it is entering URLs, searching the Internet, using open tabs and browsing history, as well as managing a web browser through a set of special commands. Despite the outward simplicity, Min has a rather serious filling: there is an ad blocker, behavioral trackers and images, it supports the ability to modify the User-Agent and create custom scripts to change the behavior of sites. In addition, the browser has tab grouping tools and a built-in password manager.

Nyxt
Product website: nyxt.atlas.engineer.
Codebase: WebKit and WebEngine (Blink).
Supported platforms: Windows (using the Windows Subsystem for Linux, WSL), macOS, Linux, BSD.
HTML5test.com test results: 459 points.

A browser aimed at advanced users, researchers and web developers who need to control the behavior of the Internet browser when processing network content. Nyxt allows you to redefine or reconfigure any classes, methods, variables, functions, as well as make changes to the code translated by web servers on the fly. The browser is optimized for keyboard control and supports an impressive set of commands to perform various operations and tasks. Supports work with tabs and custom scripts. There is a built-in ad blocking system.

Otter
Product website: otter-browser.org.
Codebase: QtWebEngine.
Supported platforms: Windows, macOS, Linux.
HTML5test.com test results: 361 points.

A project in which enthusiasts are trying to create a web browser based on the patterns of Opera 12 - the very latest "classic" version of the Norwegian browser, warm memories of which still do not leave nostalgic Internet aesthetes. How well the work is moving in this direction can be judged by the screenshots below. On our own behalf, we add that in terms of functionality, Otter does not reach the original twelfth Opera and, with external similarity, leaves the impression of a “raw” product, and in terms of supporting modern web standards, it is completely outsiders. In general, crafts for an amateur. If you really want to turn back the clock and get something really similar to the landmark Opera 12 browser, you should take a closer look at the Vivaldi project, developed by a development team led by the former co-founder of Opera Software Jon von Tetzchner.

Qutebrowser
Product website: qutebrowser.org.
Codebase: QtWebEngine.
Supported platforms: Windows, macOS, Linux, FreeBSD.
HTML5test.com test results: 472 points.

A tool for working in the global network, the control of which is completely tied to the keyboard and the corresponding key combinations. There are more than a hundred of the latter, and a memo carefully created by the developer helps not to get confused in them, one glance at which is enough to understand that Qutebrowser is for strong-willed users. Brutality gives the browser a minimalistic interface with text blocks and a console with an impressive set of commands for progressive web surfing. Otherwise, Qutebrowser is not much different from its counterparts: tabbed browsing is supported, there is an ad blocker, a download manager, a PDF viewer, a private browsing mode, and other familiar features.

seamonkey
Product website: seamonkey-project.org.
Codebase: Firefox.
Supported platforms: Windows, macOS, Linux.
HTML5test.com test results: 435 points.

An all-in-one product that includes, in addition to a browser, an email client with an address book, a news feed aggregator (RSS / Atom), an IRC client, a calendar, a task scheduler and a web page editor. A kind of universal “Swiss knife” for full-fledged work on the Internet and solving all kinds of problems. In terms of browser features, SeaMonkey is practically no different from Firefox, on which the product is built. The difference lies only in the classic organization of the interface, characteristic of the early releases of Mozilla software solutions.

Conclusion.
You can argue for a long time and enthusiastically about the relevance of the browsers presented in the review. Some readers will consider them banal alterations of the solutions available on the Open Source market, others will find something new and really important in them. Be that as it may, all these browsers are a clear example of how open source software creates additional competition and, as a result, contributes to the development of software products.

Of course, in terms of audience coverage and development capacities, Min, Brave, GNOME Web, Browsh, as well as other web browsers listed in the note are infinitely far from the mastodons of the market, but each of them has its own zest that distinguishes them from the general series of the same type browsers. This is their main value.





Google Chrome Named Most Vulnerable Browser of 2022.
October 6, 2022

New data provided by Atlas VPN service operator suggests that Google Chrome users should be extremely careful when browsing the web - the browser is the most vulnerable among the most famous products of this purpose.

According to the study, 303 vulnerabilities were discovered in Chrome in 2022 and 3159 in its entire history. The conclusions are based on data from the VulDB platform and take into account the “gaps” that were discovered from January 1 to October 5, 2022.

Chrome was the only browser in which new vulnerabilities were discovered in the first five days of October: CVE-2022-3318, CVE-2022-3314, CVE-2022-3311, CVE-2022-3309 and CVE-2022-3307. You can fix them by updating Chrome to 106.0.5249.61.

The second place in the “anti-rating” of 2022 is occupied by Firefox with 117 vulnerabilities, and the third is Microsoft Edge with 103 vulnerabilities, there are 61% more than there were in 2021. Finally, the fourth place is occupied by Apple Safari, and Opera is the safest. In 2022, there were no documented security holes in this browser at all, and only 344 variants were reported in the entire history.

It is noteworthy that Chrome, Edge and Opera are created on the same Chromium engine, but a different approach to “finishing” the foundation has led to results according to which the first two browsers are the most dangerous for users, and Opera is the most secure. However, vulnerabilities in Chromium could theoretically affect all variants of the above three.

To stay safe, users are advised to regularly update their browsers to the latest versions and take extra care when downloading plugins and extensions, especially from obscure sources from unknown developers.





Elon Musk tried to buy Twitter for 30% off the April offer.
October 6, 2022

For a long time, it was believed that Elon Musk's dispute with Twitter over the number of bots in the daily monetized audience was aimed at negotiating the purchase of social network assets at a lower price than agreed in April. This week, the billionaire announced his willingness to buy Twitter shares at the previous price of $54.20 a share. Sources say that several weeks before that, attempts were made to bring down the price by up to 30%.

This was reported by The New York Times, citing its own channels for obtaining information. Initially, representatives of Elon Musk tried to negotiate with Twitter to reduce the price from $44 to $31 billion, but by the end of September, the requested discount was reduced from 30% to 10%, and it was already about $39.6 billion. The current capitalization of Twitter just exceeded $39, 2 billion at the end of yesterday's trading, but in the end, Elon Musk was forced to return to the level of $44 billion, from which he started in April.

As you know, Twitter this week received an offer from representatives of Musk to conclude a deal on the terms agreed in April, but both parties have not yet filed a petition with the court to stop preparations for the meeting, which is scheduled for October 17. According to some reports, a new agreement was to be signed this week, but so far the parties are trying to settle some formalities. Among them, a clause is mentioned that frees Elon Musk from the need to buy Twitter if it is impossible to collect the required amount. If the financing terms of the deal, on which it was being prepared since April, have not changed, then Elon Musk will have to find about another $ 3 billion to buy Twitter shares owned by other investors.

Twitter representatives also insist on paying a penalty to Elon Musk for the delay in preparing the deal, which was caused by his July refusal to complete it on the original terms. The company's lawyers would also like to receive guarantees from the court to control the fulfillment by Elon Musk of his obligations to buy Twitter.

This week, Elon Musk was supposed to testify under oath in the Twitter case, but since he announced his intentions to buy the company, the corresponding hearings may not take place, or will be postponed to a later date. There are no formal reasons for canceling the October 17 hearing, as Judge Kathaleen McCormick, who is in charge of the case, explained the day before.





An alliance between the US, Taiwan, South Korea and Japan to tech contain China could hurt their economies.
October 5, 2022

At the end of September, representatives of the authorities of the United States, Taiwan, South Korea and Japan held a remote meeting on the prospects for creating a Chip 4 technology alliance, which is considered by the press to be aimed at curbing China's technological development. Taiwanese officials have already expressed concern about the possible consequences of such an alliance, saying in passing that the island's economy is highly dependent on China.

First of all, China is Taiwan's largest trading partner. Chen Chern-Chyi, Deputy Minister of Economy of the island, at a press conference on the results of this meeting, emphasized that the semiconductor industry itself involves cooperation between different countries. The production equipment comes mainly from the US and Europe, raw materials come from Japan, and technology comes from South Korea and Taiwan. Building sustainable supply chains requires active collaboration.

According to a Taiwanese official, the island's authorities are facing a difficult dilemma, since it will not be possible to completely isolate themselves from trade with China. Most likely, Taiwanese companies will continue to cooperate with Chinese companies, at least in those areas that will be allowed by the government. At the same time, Taiwan is going to strongly protect its trade secrets and advanced technologies, as well as prevent the illegal poaching of valuable personnel to China. It is quite difficult to control the export of products from Taiwan to the PRC if it is not possible to prove that the goods in question can be used by buyers for military purposes. The Taiwanese authorities, however, are ready to work tirelessly to eliminate the holes in the national security system. Last year, Taiwan's exports to China reached $188.9 billion, with industrial equipment and integrated circuits accounting for the bulk of it.

According to experts, for South Korea, an attempt to move away from China can also result in serious economic losses, since last year the Chinese direction accounted for 25% of Korean exports, and the United States in this expression was content with only 15%. China is also the largest importer of goods to South Korea. Japan receives many components and raw materials from China, so for both potential members of the Chip 4 alliance, joining this US-led alliance will entail a number of problems. On the one hand, South Korea and Japan want to build a self-sufficient semiconductor industry, and in this quest they are forced to rely on American-made technologies. On the other hand, the deterioration of relations with China will cause serious damage to Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan. There are too many contradictions among the potential members of this alliance for it to become viable in a short time.





Elon Musk Says He Wants to Build Super App X on Twitter.
October 5, 2022

As it became known the day before, Elon Musk is again ready to acquire Twitter at the previously announced price of $44 billion. And he has grandiose plans for the platform - based on it, he intends to create a super application similar to the Chinese WeChat.

Once the deal closes, the richest man in the world will own one of the most influential media platforms, and end the litigation that has damaged the reputation of both Twitter and Musk himself. In April, the businessman made a takeover offer to the company, but subsequently withdrew it due to uncertainty over spambots. The day before, however, he said that the acquisition of the platform will accelerate the implementation of his intention to create an "application for everything", conventionally designated "X".

Apart from a short tweet, Musk has not yet made any statements, but there is a possibility that this is a large-scale project comparable to the Chinese WeChat super app. The head of Tesla has previously expressed admiration for how Tencent has turned the messenger into a kind of “little internet” used by more than a billion Chinese every day. Musk shared his thoughts aloud that Twitter would be more useful if it became more like WeChat and TikTok - and recalled super apps that are popular in Asia, which offer to solve various tasks in one place, from chatting to calling a taxi.

Presumably, in the implementation of his idea, Musk can build on five key theses that distinguish WeChat.

It is more than a social network. Hundreds of millions of people use WeChat every day to order taxis, order food, and make restaurant reservations. All this is implemented using a platform of mini-applications inside WeChat, connecting to a single interface.
WeChat is a fintech giant, one of the largest payment and financial systems in China. People here pay for goods and services, send money to each other and take loans.
It is one of the most popular news and entertainment portals in the country.
It's a powerful business platform: WeChat's widget economy hit $240 billion in 2021.
WeChat is a one-stop service that combines the power of Facebook*, Twitter, Uber, Instagram* and Substack.
And WeChat is also distinguished by one feature characteristic of Chinese services, which the traditionally liberal Musk is hardly ready to welcome in the public field. It's about censorship. Artificial intelligence algorithms and an army of moderators regularly clear the platform of content that official Beijing considers unacceptable, from obscene content to criticism of the authorities.

* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





Elon Musk wanted to buy Twitter again.
October 5, 2022

Elon Musk invited Twitter to resume the initial deal to buy the social network. This was told by sources familiar with the situation. Against the backdrop of this news, the value of Twitter's shares immediately jumped by 18%.

Recall that Musk announced plans to buy a controlling stake in Twitter for $44 billion ($54.2 per share) in April 2022. Later, a scandal erupted around the social network due to fake accounts on the platform. The businessman said that he was not provided with information about bots and fake accounts, after which he demanded the termination of the transaction. In response, Twitter filed a lawsuit to force Musk to complete the deal on the original terms.

The trial was scheduled for mid-October. According to one of the sources, the businessman's lawyers considered the development of events negative. Allegedly, Judge Kathleen St. Jay McCormick sided with Twitter several times in pre-trial disputes. Because of this, lawyers are not sure of the sufficient validity of the conditions necessary to terminate the transaction.

Representatives of Elon Musk have not yet commented on the situation. So far, the social network has not reported anything about the proposal.

Updated:
“We have received a letter from representatives of Musk. We intend to close the deal at $54.20 per share,” Twitter Chief Legal Counsel Sean Edgett said in an email to employees.

Shares after the resumption of trading rose even stronger - the daily increase was already 22%.





In the Twitter case against Musk, another potential witness appeared: he claimed that 20% of the accounts on the platform are bots.
October 5, 2022

Another ex-Twitter employee is considering appearing in court as part of Elon Musk's lawsuit against a $44 billion purchase of the company due in two weeks. And potentially this person can tell a lot of important details about Twitter bots.

Unlike another high-profile witness, Peiter Zatko — who never mentioned the words “bots” or “spam” during his testimony before Congress in September — a second whistleblower, a former Twitter employee, claims he was involved in the development of an internal report that allegedly concluded that at least 30% of daily active Twitter users are automated spam accounts.

"Twitter management just laughed when we gave them this report and said, 'We've always had a bot problem,'" a potential witness told The Post.

The man's testimony could be a stroke of luck for Musk, who has made the alleged Twitter bot issue the cornerstone of his legal argument about why he should be allowed to pull out of the social media deal. But there's a catch: the would-be whistleblower isn't entirely sure yet whether he should testify in court.

“I haven’t fully decided whether or not to take part in the process yet,” the potential witness said, adding that he was not sure if he could withstand all the attention that his performance at one of the most high-profile trials in recent years would attract. years.

On Wednesday, the two sides are due to exchange witness lists, which could provide an answer to the question of whether a second whistleblower will appear in the courtroom. Unlike Zatko, who was subpoenaed by Musk's team, the second informant did not receive a subpoena. Representatives for Twitter and Elon Musk have so far declined to comment.

A new witness claims that Twitter's chosen metric to measure bots - so-called monetizable daily active users, or mDAUs - is too narrow to capture the full extent of the site's spam problem. Twitter may not be lying when it says that less than 5% of its mDAUs are bots, he said, but the witness disagrees that mDAUs are used for measurement at all and claims that the company hasn't been completely upfront with its investors.

“Twitter claims to have 238 million mDAUs – but the total number of daily users is significantly higher when you include automated fake accounts that haven’t been disabled,” says the potential witness. “Spam accounts were identified because they exhibited bot-like behavior, such as posting messages every hour and responding to tweets within five seconds of being posted by another user.”

The witness also stated that he had to delete the report when he left Twitter as part of a non-disclosure agreement for confidential business information.

A source close to Twitter said the company was unaware of the study the new witness is talking about. The source also noted that not all automated accounts on the site are spambots. There are so-called "good bots" like @howsmydrivingny, which automatically searches for traffic violations based on license plates, or @met_drawings, which automatically posts public domain works from the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Drawings and Prints Department.

More importantly, a company source says, the potential witness should have nothing to do with the trial, which begins October 17 in Delaware, because his testimony does not include any alleged fraud or inconsistencies in documents filed by Twitter with the Commission. on securities and exchanges.

We add that tonight there was also information that the case may not reach the court at all. Allegedly, Musk changed his mind and is now ready to buy the company again on the same terms.





The US is preparing new sanctions against China in the high-tech sphere - they will affect AI, supercomputers and not only.
October 4, 2022

The current political leadership of the United States took over the baton of strengthening sanctions against China from the administration of President Donald Trump, but the existing restrictions on the spread of high technologies of American origin may not be enough to curb the development of China's science and defense sector, according to the authors of the new initiative. An increase in sanctions could be announced this week.

This became known to the editors of The New York Times at the suggestion of informed sources. According to the publication, the new package of anti-Chinese sanctions will expand the list of companies and organizations in China that will be denied access to technologies and components of American origin that can accelerate scientific and technological progress and the development of new types of weapons. Not only large Chinese companies, but also academic institutions of the PRC can fall under sanctions.

Along the way, restrictions will be strengthened on the sale of a certain list of semiconductor components to China, even if they are manufactured outside the United States in third countries. Recall that in relation to a certain range of NVIDIA and AMD computing accelerators, the corresponding restrictions are already in effect. The sanctions will also limit US investors' ability to invest in the development of certain Chinese companies. One of the victims of the new package of US sanctions could be the Chinese solid-state memory manufacturer YMTC (Yangtze Memory Technologies), which has made significant technological progress since 2016 and is only a step or two behind the market leaders in terms of the number of layers in 3D NAND memory chips.

The purpose of the new sanctions will be to limit the access of Chinese companies and institutions not only to advanced technologies used in the creation of supercomputers, but also to simpler semiconductor components produced according to mature lithographic standards. It cannot be ruled out that recent confirmations of China's ability to produce chips using 14-nm technology without the need to use foreign equipment or materials have increased the US authorities' concern about China's progress in the semiconductor field. The 20th Congress of the Communist Party of China is due to begin in the middle of this month, and a new package of US sanctions may be adopted before this important event for the political and economic life of the PRC. U.S. regulatory officials have yet to comment on the upcoming tightening of sanctions.





Samsung promised to master the 1.4-nm process technology in 5 years.
October 4, 2022

South Korean company Samsung Electronics has long sought to reduce its reliance on its memory chip business. It is trying to achieve this by strengthening the contract manufacturing of semiconductor components. By 2027, Samsung expects to triple its manufacturing capacity using advanced manufacturing processes, as well as master the 1.4-nm process technology. By the middle of the decade, the company's customers will be able to receive 2-nm products.

The corresponding plans of Samsung Electronics were announced this week. In June, the company began delivering 3nm products to its first customers, but in the future, they may include not only Qualcomm and Tesla, but also AMD, as Samsung representatives explained during a profile briefing, according to Reuters. Most likely, the second generation of the 3nm process that Samsung will offer in 2024 will be in much higher demand, according to the company. Samsung representatives acknowledge that in terms of the development of 5-nm and 4-nm lithography, the company lagged behind its main competitor TSMC, but in the future parity should be restored. In fact, even the first generation of Samsung's 3nm products meet customer expectations. The yield rate on the Samsung assembly line is now one of the highest in the industry.

Demand for process technology down to 5 nm or less is growing rapidly even amid significant inflationary pressures, as in the long term, these components should be in demand in the field of high-performance computing, artificial intelligence systems, 5G and 6G communications networks, as well as in the automotive sector. If you do not spend money on the development of advanced lithography now, according to Samsung representatives, then in the future the semiconductor industry simply cannot cope with the demand for core products.

The pace of expansion in advanced lithographic manufacturing is currently being held back by ASML's inability to supply its customers with the required number of lithographic scanners. Samsung notes the high interest of American customers in obtaining advanced locally produced components, and from this point of view, the new facility under construction in Texas has great potential for expansion. The Taylor facility will begin operations in 2024, the company added. It is possible that 3nm components will be produced here, although nothing has been officially announced about the timing of such a migration.





Google disables Translate service for users in China.
October 3, 2022

Google has blocked the Translate service for China. It was one of the few services of an American company remaining in the Celestial Empire, for example, Google search left this, the world's largest market for Internet services, back in 2010.

According to a Google spokesperson, the company has discontinued its Translate service in mainland China due to low service usage.

In 2010, the company stopped providing search services in mainland China due to legal difficulties related to censorship of Internet content. Nevertheless, the company explored the possibility of maintaining a kind of "bridgehead" in the market - the Google Translate service became available to users in the country in 2017 both on the corresponding website and using a search mobile application. The company also considered a prototype of a separate search engine for the Chinese market, but later stated that the project was scrapped.

According to the publication, the termination of the service coincided with the escalation of tensions between China and the United States. It is worth noting that not so long ago there were massive failures in the operation of Google services in Russia, while the use of a VPN made it possible to avoid problems. Reliable information about the causes of failures is still missing.





JioBook laptops with 4G support and a price of only $184 will be released in India.
October 3, 2022

In India, mobile operator Reliance Jio intends to introduce an ultra-budget JioBook laptop worth just $184 with an integrated 4G SIM card. The company expects to repeat the success of its budget smartphone JioPhone, which is extremely popular in the country - low-cost models are in great demand here.

It is known that the JioBook notebook was developed in collaboration with Qualcomm and Microsoft. The first supplies chipsets based on the Arm-architecture, the second provides support for some popular applications with the model.

Jio is India's largest mobile operator with over 420 million customers. Starting this month, the JioBook laptop will be available to corporate customers such as schools and government departments, with a release to a wider audience expected in the next three months. Shortly after the 4G version, a fifth-generation version will also debut.

JioBook will be produced in India by contract manufacturer Flex - by March, Jio intends to sell "hundreds of thousands" of devices. In total, according to researchers from IDC, 14.8 million PCs were sold in the country last year, sales leaders are HP, Dell and Lenovo. According to experts, the release of JioBook will potentially expand the notebook market segment by at least 15%.

It is known that JioBook runs on the proprietary JioOS operating system, and applications can be downloaded from the JioStore marketplace. In addition, Jio focuses on the possibility of using an inexpensive laptop as an alternative to tablets for office workers.

Since going on sale at the end of last year, the JioPhone has become the top seller in the sub-$100 smartphone segment, accounting for about 20% of the market in the past three quarters, according to Counterpoint Research. Jio, which received about $22 billion in investments from international companies like KKR & Co and Silver Lake in 2020, managed to revive the world's second mobile market with the launch of cheap 4G data plans and free voice services in 2016. Later, an ultra-budget 4G phone with smartphone functions was also introduced.





Stellantis CEO believes that chip availability issues in the automotive industry will continue until the end of next year.
October 3, 2022

The automotive industry has been in a fever for many months due to a shortage of semiconductor components. The head of the transcontinental automaker Stellantis Carlos Tavares, in an interview with the French newspaper Le Parisien, said that "the situation will continue to be very difficult until the end of 2023, and only then there will be some improvement."

The head of the auto concern noted the increased interest of suppliers of semiconductor components in working with automakers, since prices for components have risen, and it has become more profitable for suppliers to ship them for the needs of the automotive industry. One of the reasons for the shortage of components, we recall, was the shift in the priorities of suppliers in a pandemic. When the demand for PCs and consumer electronics soared, it became more profitable for manufacturers to ship components in this direction, and the auto industry was served on a leftover basis.

In France, as the source explains, last year the number of newly registered cars increased by 5%, but in general since the beginning of this year it has been lower by 12% than in the same period last year. Toyota Motor Corporation managed to increase sales volumes by 3.8% in August, demonstrating positive dynamics for the first time in the last 12 months. Vehicle production volumes have grown by 44% compared to August last year. In August, the company was able to produce 766,683 vehicles and sell 777,047 copies. By March 2023, Toyota still hopes to produce 9.7 million vehicles over the previous 12 months. For the first time in five months, Toyota managed to increase the volume of car production in Japan in August, producing 196,038 vehicles, which is 5.6% more than the results of the same month last year.

Competitors Nissan and Honda managed to increase vehicle production volumes in August for the second and third consecutive months, respectively, the source explains. The first of the companies increased production volumes by 9% year-on-year, and the second - by 27% at once. Apparently, the shortage of components is systematically receding, and now the main thing for automakers is that demand is not crippled by global macroeconomic processes.





The first absolutely legal transaction with cryptocurrency was held in Kazakhstan.
October 2, 2022

At the Digital Bridge 2022 digital technology and business forum, President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev was presented with a report on the first legal cryptocurrency operation in the country. Thus, Kazakhstan opened for its citizens the legal purchase and sale of digital assets for tenge. It is noted that the own development of the Eurasian Bank made it possible to set one of the lowest commissions in the world for such an operation.

“This is the first crypto-fiat operation of a crypto-exchange-bank-client on the entire Eurasian continent,” Talgat Dosanov, director of the Intebix exchange, told the President of Kazakhstan.

Recall that on May 23, the relevant departments of Kazakhstan approved pilot rules, under which operations with cryptocurrencies are allowed in the country, subject to a number of conditions. To participate in the pilot project, exchanges need to obtain an appropriate license, and banks need to apply to join the program. The source notes that the regulatory framework was developed in accordance with the highest international standards, which provide reliable control over transactions and the security of client funds.

Along with the first operation to purchase cryptocurrency for tenge, the Eurasian Bank announced plans to issue a cryptocurrency card in Kazakhstan by the end of this year. After the implementation of this plan, residents of the country will be able to pay for purchases in stores with a cryptocurrency card. The operation itself will be carried out in tenge from the account associated with the cardholder's account on the Intebix exchange. Currently, the Eurasian Bank has completed the development of the procedure for issuing a card and is working with the National Bank of Kazakhstan on issues related to possible risks.





Neighboring dwarf galaxies have taken refuge from the Milky Way in a cocoon of hot gas, scientists have found.
October 2, 2022

A group of American scientists summed up the results of long-term observations using the Hubble and FUSE telescopes, and stated that they were able to confirm the existence of the Magellanic Crown - a cocoon of hot gas that does not allow the Milky Way to absorb two dwarf galaxies rotating around it: the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds.

For years, astronomers have tried to explain why two dwarf galaxies orbit the Milky Way, and stars are still forming in them. This has been going on for billions of years: the gravitational force of the massive Milky Way is pulling gas out of them, and in theory, the process of star formation should have stopped because of this, but it continues. Scientists have suggested that the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds are hidden behind some kind of cosmic "shield" or the Magellanic Crown - a giant cloud of gas with a temperature of about half a million degrees.

Until now, astronomers have not been able to obtain visual confirmation that this object exists, but a group of American scientists said that observations obtained over 30 years through the Hubble telescopes and the now decommissioned FUSE (Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer) indicate the presence of a Magellanic Crowns. The head of the research group Dhanesh Krishnarao from the Space Telescope Research Institute (USA, Baltimore) and his colleagues argue that the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds are indeed surrounded by a cocoon of hot gas, which prevents the pumping of matter from them and provides dwarf galaxies with the opportunity for further formation of stars.

Finding this giant space shield was not easy: despite the fact that it stretches for 100 thousand light years, the shield is almost invisible. And this, perhaps, is good, because otherwise its appearance would block a significant part of the sky in the Southern Hemisphere. Scientists believe that formations like the Magellanic Crown are the remnants of primordial gas clouds that undergo gravitational collapse and form galaxies. Similar coronas have been repeatedly found in other galaxies, but they have never been observed at such a close distance.

Studying observations through Hubble and FUSE, astronomers decided to focus on ultraviolet images of quasars located billions of light years behind the Magellanic Crown. In modern concepts, quasars are the active nuclei of galaxies at the initial stage of development: supermassive black holes that absorb the matter surrounding them. This radiates colossal amounts of energy, and produces light that can be brighter than all the stars combined in a galaxy like ours. Scientists have suggested that the invisible Magellanic Corona should manifest itself due to the distortion of light from quasars when this light passes through it - while the distortion mechanisms should be preserved.

Astronomers have studied the characteristic distortions in the ultraviolet radiation of 28 quasars, which allowed them to describe the features of the material surrounding the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds. Signs of carbon, oxygen and silicon have been found in a halo of hot plasma that surrounds the dwarf galaxy, suggesting the existence of the Magellanic Crown. According to scientists, this formation prevents the destructive effects of the Milky Way and protects small galaxies from other objects that seek to penetrate their territory. As a result, the process of formation of new stars is not interrupted.





Instagram* and Facebook* now have the ability to post NFTs.
October 2, 2022

Meta* has made it possible for all US users to post to Facebook* and Instagram* "digital collectibles", i.e. non-fungible tokens or NFTs. On Instagram*, this feature is also available to users in over a hundred other countries.

For the function, until recently available to a limited number of users, to work, you need to connect a crypto wallet to your profile on the social network, after which it will be possible to create publications with NFT objects from this wallet. At the same time, the creator of the object and its owner are automatically marked in the publication. The application settings now have a special section dedicated to digital assets, and wallets created on five platforms, including Coinbase, MetaMask and Dapper, can be connected to the profile. Theoretically, this operation is available not only in the mobile application, but also in the web interface, but the authors of The Verge resource say that the second option is still malfunctioning.

It is unlikely that the function will be in demand among most users, NFT sales have plummeted this year: in September, these digital assets were sold for $466 million, which is 97% less than $17 billion. which were received in January.

* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





The head of Yangtze Memory resigned - his departure is associated with "great corruption" in China's high-tech funds.
October 2, 2022

The other day it was reported that the Chinese authorities are conducting an extensive inspection of the activities of some of the largest national funds with state funding for corruption. First of all, we are talking about funds to support semiconductor production. It has now been revealed that the CEO of Yangtze Memory (YMTC) has resigned due to personal reasons. One of the real reasons for this could be the criminal prosecution of his direct boss, the head of Tsinghua Unigroup.

Tsinghua Unigroup has built China's most advanced NAND flash memory manufacturing facility in just eight years. A subsidiary of Yangtze Memory has been and is responsible for this direction. Despite all the successes, the parent company found itself on the verge of bankruptcy, and in the winter of this year, it was forced to restructure its debts in court. Merits to the fatherland do not cancel the fact that even heroes will have to answer in case of corruption.

According to foreign media reports, and the Chinese media does not spread such news, the head of Tsinghua Unigroup Zhao Weiguo was arrested in July this year as part of a criminal case against him and several other managers for personal enrichment from national funds. Closely connected with him by business relations, the head of Yangtze Memory Yang Shining could at least partially be aware of what was happening. At least he can take part in the case as a witness.

Young had a distinguished career in the field of semiconductors. He graduated from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (USA) and worked at Intel, joined GlobalFoundries as a CTO, served as COO of SMIC and CEO of Wuhan Xinxin Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (XMC), which he left in 2016 to become CEO of YMTC . Zhao Weiguo repeatedly called Yang a "genius". And looking at the success of YMTC, which introduced 3D NAND memory with over 200 layers in August this year, it's easy to believe. We hope everything will be cleared up soon.





Elon Musk wanted to use the word "Trump" to find fake Twitter accounts.
September 30, 2022

According to online sources, Elon Musk wanted Twitter to include the word "Trump" in searches for corporate messages and documents. According to the lawyer of the billionaire, due to this, it was planned to get a more accurate assessment of the problem with fake accounts on the social network.

“Trump is relevant for the reasons we explained, which is that the name is often associated with spam, fake accounts and bots,” Silpa Maruri, Elon Musk’s lawyer, said in an email. The information was revealed amid an ongoing legal battle over the billionaire's attempt to flag a $44 billion Twitter deal.

Musk said he decided to pull out of the deal in part because Twitter didn't tell him about the number of bots on the company's platform. At the same time, Twitter itself sued the billionaire, trying to get the court to oblige the billionaire to complete the deal. Twitter lawyer Bradley Wilson, when asked about the controversial search terms, said the company saw no need to search for "Trump."





Apple will take years and billions of dollars to reduce dependence on China.
September 30, 2022

American companies, for a number of reasons, seek to reduce their dependence on China, but in practice, completely getting rid of ties with China can be extremely difficult, if not impossible.

Apple is indeed trying to reduce its dependence on China: some of the new iPhone 14s are already being manufactured in India, and Foxconn, the company's largest supplier, has indicated its willingness to invest $300 million to expand its capacity in Vietnam. However, the withdrawal of only 10% of Apple's production capacity from China will take about 8 years - 98% of iPhones are produced in the country. China is backed not only by dozens of component suppliers, but also by modern infrastructure: efficient transport, communications and power supply.

Only toy and T-shirt manufacturers can quickly get rid of dependence, while technology companies around the world have invested tens of billions of dollars in Chinese industry over the past twenty years, forming stable production chains. Breaking those ties could take just as long, causing irreparable damage to an already weakened global economy. In recent years, the political factor has been increasingly hindering the integration of the United States and China: the disagreements that arose under the previous president have intensified with the advent of the new one; Washington imposed sanctions on the largest Chinese companies led by Huawei; the situation became even more complicated after the introduction of tough measures by Beijing to contain the pandemic; and finally everything was upset by the contradictions between the two countries on the Taiwan issue.

By the end of 2020, American companies had invested $90 billion in Chinese partners, and subsequent events did not prevent this amount from being increased by $2.5 billion in 2021. In reality, these amounts may be more, because funds are also sent through Hong Kong and classic offshore companies like Cayman and Virgin Islands. Despite the well-founded fears of American partners about the possible consequences of a trade war for the entire global economy, the United States is slowly but surely breaking off relations with China: on September 23, Goldman Sachs analysts published a report in which they stated that China's share in American technology imports since 2017 decreased by 10 percentage points, mainly due to the mobile segment.

Apple has the biggest reliance on China among US tech companies, including Amazon, HP, Microsoft, Cisco and Dell. By 2030, the overall dependence of the US technology industry on China could “in most cases” decrease by 20-40%, and in the next decade, electronics manufacturers can increase their dependence to 20-30%. The US administration is using a two-pronged approach to achieve this goal: on the one hand, it offers subsidies to American companies for moving production to the US, and on the other hand, it discourages further investment in China by raising duties and introducing export controls. The Chip Act opens up subsidies for companies manufacturing 28nm and below products in the United States, and export control rules have been extended to import equipment for the production of chips using 14nm and below technology into the PRC.

Members of the US-China Business Council (USCBC) said that the optimism of American companies regarding China has fallen to an all-time low: this was facilitated by Beijing's tough policy to prevent the spread of the pandemic, power outages in the country and geopolitical factors - because of this, more than half of those surveyed postponed or canceled their investment plans. However, it is too early to talk about the exodus of American business from the country. The "China plus one" formula remains generally accepted, assuming that the main production base is China, and new facilities are being built in South and Southeast Asia: India, Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia.

Last year, American companies announced their intention to invest about $740 million in Vietnamese production, the highest since 2017 and twice as much as in 2020. A critical but vulnerable component of US supply chains is Taiwan, where TSMC manufactures more than 90% of advanced civil and military chips. Apple, MediaTek and Qualcomm, which control 85% of the mobile processor market, launch their products at TSMC. In the next five years, Taiwan will remain a key producer of advanced chips. But mainland China is on the heels of its former territory: 19 of the 20 fastest growing chipmakers in the world in the last four quarters are based in China.





SMIC started building a new chip factory with a capacity of 100,000 300mm wafers per month.
September 30, 2022

This year, the Chinese company SMIC intends to spend a record $5 billion on capital construction and increase the processing volume of 200 mm silicon wafers to 150,000 pieces per month, but the company will not stop there. The new facility in Tianjin, whose construction began on Saturday, will be able to process up to 100,000 300 mm silicon wafers per month.

Preparations for the start of construction were complicated by the fact that Tianjin is still under a partial lockdown associated with new outbreaks of coronavirus infection. Since August 27, SMIC representatives have been systematically working with the authorities of Tianjin to prepare for the start of construction of a new enterprise. In fourteen out of sixteen districts of this settlement, cases of infection with coronavirus infection have been detected so far. Even under such difficult conditions, construction started on Saturday without much delay, as the authorities realize the importance of expanding the production capacity of the Chinese semiconductor industry, of which SMIC is the flagship.

The contract manufacturer already has a facility in Tianjin that processes 200mm silicon wafers, but the new site will allow larger 300mm wafers to be processed. A breakthrough in terms of lithography at this enterprise should not be expected, since the most advanced of the used technical processes will be 28-nm. The former SMIC facility in Tianjin was taken over by Motorola in 2004. In 2016, SMIC began its expansion, which increased the monthly production volume to 150,000 silicon wafers. In total, SMIC has three plants working with 200 mm diameter inserts, as well as three plants processing 300 mm inserts. The budget for the new construction is estimated at $7.5 billion.





Bill Gates: the environmental agenda will not force people to change their lifestyle - they need comfortable conditions.
September 30, 2022

In a recent interview, billionaire Bill Gates expressed the idea that people in general cannot be forced to reduce their consumption of energy and goods in order to reduce the carbon footprint on the planet. In the mass, no one will make such sacrifices, unless people are forced to do so. Instead, Gates calls for the creation of better and cheaper alternatives in all areas of life, industry and the economy, so that the green agenda does not interfere with life and work.

“I don’t think it’s realistic to say that people will completely change their lifestyle because of climate concerns,” Gates said in an interview with Akshat Rathi on an episode of the Bloomberg Zero podcast released on Thursday. “Apart from a huge central authority that will force people to simply obey, I think that the problem of collective action is simply completely unsolvable.”

Bill Gates pays out of his own pocket about $9 million annually in compensation for his carbon footprint on Earth. His actions are repeated by a number of rich people, which is clearly not enough to solve the problem. Numerous companies and startups are trying to solve it, the most promising of which are supported by the Breakthrough Energy investment fund founded by Gates in 2015. Based on his own information, for example, Bill Gates is confident that in 10 years the world will be able to refuse to supply fossil fuels from Russia.

Nevertheless, these 10 years must be lived with minimal damage to the economies of developed countries. Therefore, Bill Gates urges not to be afraid of "dirty" initiatives in the form of the reactivation of coal-fired power plants in Europe or the discovery of gas fields in the Netherlands.

“It's a very difficult set of trade-offs. Very unexpected,” Gates said. “In the short term, any solution needs to be found, even if it means an increase in emissions.”

Obviously, there are many ways to achieve zero emissions and they cover all spheres of human life. Even such a seemingly obvious decision as the abandonment of feed-in nightly electricity tariffs in order to support intermittent daytime solar energy requires its own study, justification and preparation for it. Create new comfortable conditions for people, and the process will go by itself, Gates urges. Any other path will not lead to the desired goal.





China has begun to create the world's most powerful pulsed magnet - its field is millions of times greater than the earth's.
September 30, 2022

For breakthroughs on the scientific front in the field of semiconductors, 6G communications, materials science and pharmaceuticals, installations that create prohibitive magnetic fields are needed. All the latest records in the field of achieving the strongest magnetic fields belong to the United States. Some of them, China has already been able to beat, the rest intends to surpass in the future. In particular, China has begun construction of a complex to install the world's most powerful pulsed magnet.

It should be said that quite recently a Chinese installation for generating a stable magnetic field produced a record result, creating a field with an induction of 45.22 Tesla. The previous record was held for 23 years by the American National High Magnetic Field Laboratory, which created an installation with a constant magnetic field of 45 T. The record for creating a pulsed magnetic field belongs to the Los Alamos National Laboratory in the USA, whose installation creates a pulsed magnetic field with an induction of 100.75 T, which is 1.5–4 million times stronger than the Earth's magnetic field.

Chinese scientists set out to create a tool for obtaining a pulsed magnetic field by induction of 110 T. The installation began to be built in Wuhan, with plans to put the project into operation in five years. Investment in the facility will amount to about 2 billion yuan, or about $281 million.

Creating such super-powerful magnets is a non-trivial task in every sense. Both the most powerful local system for supplying electricity with a power of several gigawatts and the ability to translate this energy into a magnetic pulse without burning the installation are needed. In 2018, Japanese researchers tried to set an absolute record for creating a pulsed magnetic field with a force of 1200 T. According to Chinese sources, the experiment ended with the destruction of not only the installation, but also the laboratory itself, where it was installed.

Incidentally, the record-breaking facility at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in the United States relies on a solenoid made from a unique composite created in Russia. An ultra-strong highly conductive copper-niobium nanocomposite was developed at the Kurchatov Institute jointly with the All-Russian Research Institute of Inorganic Materials. A. A. Bochvara. Whether Chinese scientists will follow the same path is not specified. In any case, this will be an achievement, even if the record is not set. According to Chinese sources, experiments are already being scheduled for work on the future facility.





Twitter founder Jack Dorsey offered Elon Musk a seat on the board of directors long before he announced his intentions to buy the company.
September 30, 2022

Less than three weeks left before the start of the court hearing on the dispute between Twitter and Elon Musk over the latter's intentions to buy this social network, which he now refuses. Court documents show that Twitter founder Jack Dorsey discussed with Elon Musk the idea of ​​inviting him to the company's board of directors even before the billionaire expressed his willingness to buy it.

At least, according to CNBC, from the correspondence between the two defendants in this case, it becomes known that Jack Dorsey hesitates about the success of the very idea of ​​including Elon Musk on the board of directors of Twitter. The founder of the social network, who, as of March 26 this year, still retained his seat on the board of directors, complained to Elon Musk about the “increased caution” of this governing body and the opinion among members of the board of directors that inviting Elon Musk to its composition increases existing risks. A few days later, Musk himself expressed his willingness to take a seat on the board of directors of Twitter, but then abandoned this idea in favor of buying the company's assets.

Jack Dorsey, in his revelations with Elon Musk, called the position of the other members of the Twitter board of directors "completely stupid and counterproductive." At the same time, he noted that he himself does not have sufficient influence on the situation, since he has a single vote and only 3% of Twitter shares without any kind of privileges. Dorsey and Musk also discussed the Twitter founder's idea of ​​turning the company into a kind of open-source protocol like email, according to the correspondence. Jack Dorsey was sure that Musk's assistance in this direction could contribute to the achievement of the goal. By mid-May, Jack Dorsey had left the Twitter board of directors.

Along the way, it becomes known that attempts to introduce Elon Musk to the board of directors of Twitter were made by Jack Dorsey even before this whole story with the purchase of a large stake in the company by the billionaire. Judging by Dorsey's hints, he had been hatching a similar idea since 2020, when activists from the investment company Elliot Management began to put pressure on the board of directors. At the time, the Twitter board of directors also rejected the idea of ​​inviting Elon Musk to join it, according to the published correspondence. Around the same time, as Jack Dorsey explains, he himself made the decision to step down as CEO of Twitter, although he did so only in November 2021.





Trials of cross-border payments in digital currencies completed.
September 29, 2022

The Bank for International Settlements reported on the successful completion of testing cross-border payments in the official digital currencies of four countries. One of the participants in the program was China, which is actively promoting the introduction and dissemination of the digital yuan.

The program, called mCBDC, was attended by China, Hong Kong, Thailand and the United Arab Emirates. In total, 160 cross-border payments were made for a total of $22 million. The program was established to test the capabilities of official digital currencies (CBDC - Central Bank Digital Currency): this method of settlement is expected to reduce the cost, as well as increase the speed and security of international transactions.

China, meanwhile, continues to expand its domestic digital yuan project, joined by the Industrial and Commercial and Agricultural Banks of China. The new currency format is being actively tested in large cities, but is still used for small retail payments. Beijing also said that it is ready to discuss setting global standards for digital currency as this practice is implemented in different countries.

In 2023, the digital ruble will also be introduced in Russia — it will become both a method of settlement between domestic counterparties and a means of international transactions.





Forbes drops Mark Zuckerberg from top 10 richest people in the US.
September 29, 2022

Not the most favorable developments in the stock market have led Meta* (Facebook*) founder Mark Zuckerberg to lose more than half of his personal fortune in the past twelve months and move from third to eleventh position in the Forbes list of the richest people in the United States.

This authoritative business publication reported this week. Over the past twelve months, according to the source, Zuckerberg has lost about $76.8 billion amid a decline in the share price of his Meta * company. As of September 2 of this year, the value of his assets did not exceed $57.7 billion, which allowed Mark to leave the top ten richest people in America. It also held the US record for the largest financial loss in the past twelve months.

Since September 3 last year, Meta*'s stock price has fallen by 57%, and they have fallen in price more than the rest of the technology sector. In particular, Microsoft shares fell 14% during this time, Alphabet (Google) shares fell 25%, and Amazon securities sank 27%. Stock indices as a whole showed a more restrained fall against this background: Nasdaq fell by 9.8%, and S & P 500 - by 13.5%.

Meta*'s share price performance was impacted by a change in Apple's user tracking policy, which cut the former's advertising revenue. Last quarter, Meta*'s revenue for the first time in history decreased, albeit only by 1%, to $28.8 billion. According to experts, it became more difficult for advertisers to evaluate the effectiveness of advertising spending on Facebook* pages, so they began to lose interest in this site. In addition, competition is TikTok, already in February, Facebook* for the first time reported a reduction in the monthly user base, and Reels, created as an alternative to Chinese competitor Instagram*, has not yet shown due success.

Revenue losses amid significant investments in virtual reality technology and the metaverse undermine Meta*'s financial strength. On the latter, the core division of the company lost $10 billion last year. Mark Zuckerberg became a billionaire in 2008, four years after founding Facebook*. Then he was only 23 years old, which allowed Mark to be considered the youngest billionaire to create his fortune from scratch. At that time, Zuckerberg's wealth was estimated at $1.5 billion, by 2011 he was able to increase it almost 12 times to $17.5 billion. to 36th position, but it was a temporary deterioration. By last year, he was able to increase his fortune to $134.5 billion, but this year has been a disappointment for the billionaire from this point of view. The future success of the founder of Meta* will largely depend on the progress of the metaverse.

We add that the first place in the list of the richest people in the United States according to Forbes was taken by Elon Musk, whose fortune is estimated at $ 251 billion. Jeffrey Bezos with a fortune of $ 151 billion was in second place. Bill Gates closes the top three, which has $ 106 billion.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





Chinese rover detects signs of global flooding in the time of ancient Mars.
September 28, 2022

Chinese scientists in the journal Nature published an article in which they reported a significant discovery made by the Zhurong rover in the area of ​​​​its landing on the Utopia plain. According to the georadar placed on board the rover, two severe floods more than 3 and 1.5 billion years ago could have occurred in the area under study. Georadar cannot say for sure whether it was water or lava flows, but circumstantial evidence leads scientists to think about water.

The geological radar aboard the Chinese rover operates in the 11-95 MHz range. The lower the frequency, the deeper the radio waves penetrate below the surface of the planet. True, this reduces the resolution and smaller objects cease to be distinguished by the radar. The installation on Zhurong turned out to be able to distinguish the structure of the subsurface region of Mars at a depth of up to 100 m, which makes it possible to study the geological history of the Red Planet and look for an answer to the question: was there liquid water on it and the possibility for the emergence of biological life?

Radar data collected between May 25 and September 6, 2021, corresponds to a stretch of about 1171 m south of the landing site (as we progressed, the height gradually increased by 8 m or so). The first 10 m of the layer below the surface is regolith (soil formed by weathering or erosion). Below the regolith is the 20th layer with a mass of small boulders, which are most numerous in the lower part of this layer. The next 50 m is another layer with boulders, but already a meter in size. At even greater depths there is basalt.

The structure of the subsurface layer presented by observations suggests that in two prehistoric periods the region was flooded with something on a large scale, as evidenced by accumulations of stones. The first "flood" occurred between 3.5 and 3.2 billion years ago. The last is about 1.6 billion years ago. Scientists do not exclude that lava flows from the volcanoes of young Mars could lead to a similar structure of the layers. However, the encounter of lava with sediment would paint a slightly different picture than the one found by the rover, leading researchers to believe that water existed on ancient Mars.

Another indirect confirmation that there could be water on ancient Mars was the finds of hydrated minerals found on the surface of the planet by other Zhurong scientific instruments. Such minerals are formed when groundwater rises or during the melting of water ice. The rover is now in hibernation, experiencing the Martian winter in the area of ​​work. But soon he will wake up and continue his scientific work.





Unidentified people hacked Fast Company's Apple News account - the publication temporarily disabled the site.
September 28, 2022

An unknown attacker gained unauthorized access to the account of the business magazine Fast Company on the Apple News platform and sent notices of racist and obscene content to subscribers of the publication.

Apple confirmed the incident to its news service on Twitter. The hack was also confirmed by Fast Company itself. “Fast Company's Apple News account was hacked Tuesday night. Two push notifications with obscene and racist content were sent within a minute. The messages are disgusting and do not match Fast Company content. We are investigating the incident, and have also suspended feed updates and closed [website] FastCompany.com [until] we are sure that the situation has been resolved, ”the publication’s Twitter reads.

Shortly before it was shut down, a post appeared on the site, signed “postpixel,” detailing the mechanisms behind the attack and ridiculing the publisher’s attempts to protect publishing tools. The alleged hacker said that he gained access to resources thanks to a single password - it was common to many accounts, including the administrator account.

The hacker also left a link to a forum where data stolen as a result of hacks is traded. Messages about the hacking of the resources of the publication began to appear there two days ago: the attacker promised to publish the data of Fast Company employees and noted that he managed to find the customer base, but he never received access to it. Notices of obscene content came not only to subscribers of the publication, but also to other users of Apple News, according to The Verge. It is noteworthy that the hacker of such an authoritative resource limited himself mainly to hooligan publications, without trying to carry out any financial manipulations with stock markets or cryptocurrencies.





The first passenger hydrogen train in the US will be Swiss-made with Canadian engines and will be launched in 2024.
September 28, 2022

The authorities of the Californian district of San Bernardino have signed a contract for the supply of the first passenger train in the United States powered by hydrogen fuel cells. The rolling stock will be produced by the American branch of the Swiss company Stadler Rail AG, and the engines for them will be supplied by the Canadian company Ballard Power Systems. The first hydrogen trains are expected to run across California in 2024, with up to 25 trains in the future.

A significant part of harmful emissions in developed and developing countries is produced by rail transport. The USA is no exception in this regard. Moreover, they are in the forefront in terms of diesel fuel combustion in locomotives. The transfer of rolling stock to hydrogen fuel cells will significantly reduce the harmful impact on the environment. California, as the most progressive state on the green front, is ready to start this mission first in the USA.

The signed memorandum of understanding provides for the production of four Stadler FLIRT H2 passenger trains for California for intercity transportation for more than 100 passengers each. The contract can be extended to purchase up to 25 trains. Stadler produces several modifications of the FLIRT train from classic diesel to hybrid and all-electric on batteries or hydrogen fuel cells. The manufacturer has sold about 2000 trains of this type to 21 countries of the world, which reflects the colossal experience and reliable developments in the product.

Hydrogen engines under the contract for the first American FLIRT H2 trains will be manufactured by the Canadian company Ballard Power Systems. Under this contract, six 100 kW FCmove-HD+ fuel cell engines will be supplied. In operation, such an engine emits water vapor and condensed water, rather than a wide range of greenhouse gases. This practice has already found some support in Europe, where a dozen or two hydrogen-fueled trains will be put into operation in the near future.





Hacker who hacked into Optus operator base apologizes and waives $1M ransom demand.
September 28, 2022

The optusdata hacker, which claimed to have hacked the computer networks of Australia's second largest mobile operator Optus and stolen the data of 11 million subscribers, withdrew its demand for a $1 million ransom after law enforcement came to grips with it. He also apologized to the 10,200 people whose personal details he posted on the hacker forum.

The operator reported a hack on September 22, 2022. According to him, the attacker could access the personal information of customers, including names, dates of birth, phone numbers, email addresses, physical addresses, driver's licenses and passport numbers, but not account passwords or financial information.

On September 23, 2022, a hacker posted a small piece of the stolen data on the Breached hacking forum and demanded that Optus pay him a $1 million ransom under the threat of exposing the data of all 11 million customers. The attacker indicated an account with the Australian Commonwealth Bank (CBA) to send money, which was immediately blocked. However, the operator did not follow the hacker's lead and turned to law enforcement agencies.

In connection with the refusal of the operator to pay, the hacker published on September 26 a large selection of stolen data for 10,000 Optus customers on the same hacker forum, threatening to do this daily for another 10 thousand customers.

However, on September 27, the hacker posted a new message on Breached saying that the stolen data would no longer be sold or shared with anyone due to increased data breach controls. He also stated that he deleted the stolen data from his computer, which held a single copy, and apologized to affected Optus customers and the company.

It is worth noting that there is no official confirmation that the user under the nickname optusdata is really responsible for the Optus hack. It is believed that the decision to stop trying to extort money from the operator was made in response to the Australian Federal Police (AFP) announcement of the launch of Operation Hurricane to identify the threat actors behind the hack and extortion demands.





A bright flash and a plume of fragments: the first pictures of the consequences of the impact of the DART probe on an asteroid were obtained.
September 28, 2022

NASA and a number of terrestrial observatories have published the first images taken at the moment of impact of the NASA DART kamikaze probe on the asteroid Dimorph. The images show a bright flash and the subsequent scattering of fragments, turning the rammed asteroid into a kind of comet.

On Earth, the collision was recorded on September 27. More interesting data came from the LICIACube cubesat, which separated from the DART probe on September 11 and followed it at some distance. There are two cameras on board the cubesat - one with a wide and the second with a narrow field of view. The device must record both the volume of debris ejected as a result of the impact on the asteroid, and will try to take a picture of the resulting impact crater.

The images transmitted by LICIACube show a bright flash at the moment the DART probe collided with the asteroid and a cloud of debris raised by it. The DART probe itself could not capture much on video, although it got close enough to transmit images of 16-meter boulders on the surface of Dimorph. The speed of its approach to the asteroid reached 22,530 km / h, which did not give hope for a lot of pictures in the process of approaching the fatal final for him. Editing shots in DART is shown in the video below.

No less interesting was the view from the outside. The robotic observatory Terrestrial-impact Last Alert System (ATLAS) for observing potentially dangerous asteroids near the Earth presented an animated image of the moment the DART hit the asteroid and the subsequent scattering of debris.

The impact and the subsequent change in the brightness of the asteroid Dimorph were recorded by the IPM robotic observatory. M.V. Keldysh RAS. The data collected with the help of the ISON-Kitab observatory located in Uzbekistan confirms an increase in the brightness of the asteroid by 7.5 times (by 2.2m) and its subsequent decrease by 2 times (by 0.8m).

It can be expected that new and more interesting pictures of this event will soon appear, which will remain in the earth's history as the first experimental attempt to repel a threat from space. The James Webb and Hubble space telescopes will have their say in this.

Recall that the asteroid Dimorph with dimensions of about 160 m in diameter and its larger pair Didymus did not represent and do not pose a danger to the Earth. The system was chosen to test the concept of kinetic impact on a celestial body in order to change its trajectory to a safe one. The impact of the DART probe into an asteroid should lead to a noticeable change in the orbit of Dimorph around Didyma, even from Earth. The blow is made, it remains to assess the degree of its impact.





Twitter representatives will try to interrogate Musk in court.
September 27, 2022

Twitter representatives are going to interrogate Elon Musk and ask a series of questions about his sudden decision to withdraw from the company's $44 billion takeover deal. The head of Tesla and SpaceX is considered a difficult witness - when testifying under oath, he has a tendency to attack opponents.

According to court documents, Musk's interrogation was scheduled to begin on Monday and could continue until Wednesday if needed. The day before, the businessman was not called to testify. The date of his call is unknown, the reason for the delay is also not reported.

Musk's eccentric behavior could be a test for Twitter's side: in 2019, at the SolarCity hearing, the businessman refused to answer an opponent's question five times because of the way it was worded.

It is believed that Twitter's lawyers will try to use the interrogation to pass off Musk's decision to pull out of the deal as being dictated by stock market price considerations. Musk wants the court to allow him to do this without penalty, and Twitter is trying to force the defendant to buy the company for $54.20 at the current $41.58.

Hearings will open on October 17 and will last 5 days. Dozens of witnesses will testify at the meetings, including the head of Twitter Parag Agrawal - by the way, he was supposed to testify the day before in the office of one of the law firms representing Musk, but this also did not happen for some reason.





India will force manufacturers to provide smartphones with local analogue GPS support from 2023.
September 26, 2022

The Indian authorities will oblige smartphone manufacturers to make important hardware changes to their products in the coming months. It is reported that models intended for the local market will have to support the NavIC (Navigation with Indian Constellation) regional navigation system created in India from January 2023.

The country continues its course to reduce dependence on foreign navigation systems - for example, there are precedents in the history of GPS when the United States simply turned it off over certain territories in the event of military conflicts. In addition, India claims that NavIC will provide more accurate local navigation. At the same time, the costs of smartphone manufacturers are expected to increase, claiming a presence in the Indian market, the second largest after China.

So far, Russia, China, the USA, the EU and Japan have their own global or regional navigation systems. The share of NavIC, which has been operating since 2018, is minimal. For example, in India it is mandatory for satellite trackers intended for use in local public transport. Nevertheless, the Indian authorities have global ambitions. NavIC support in smartphones for India will be mandatory along with GPS.

In private meetings and discussions with authorities, vendors such as Samsung and Xiaomi have expressed concern that mandatory support for NavIC will inevitably affect the cost of developing and manufacturing smartphones for the Indian market. In addition, the authorities intend to add new bureaucratic requirements for the market from January 1, which can also lead to interruptions in supplies and disruption of planned premieres.

Samsung has reportedly expressed concern that NavIC support will require not only new chipsets, but other new smartphone components and investment in support for devices built specifically for India. These are just some of the problems associated with the possible introduction of a new navigation system in gadgets. Manufacturers are requesting the opportunity to make changes no earlier than 2025. According to Indian government sources, a final decision will be made in the coming days.

Other countries follow a similar approach. In Russia, support for GLONASS gadgets is mandatory, in China, although Beidou support is not mandatory, in 2021 it was reported that 94.5% of Chinese-made smartphones support the national navigation system.

The main participants in the smartphone market in India are Samsung, Xiaomi, Realme, as well as other companies, mainly Chinese. Apple accounts for only 3% of the market. The main problem with the new requirements will be for smartphones under $200, since any increase in price in this segment is painfully perceived by buyers.

To buy chipsets, vendors will have to turn to developers like Qualcomm and MediaTek. According to ISRO as of mid-2021, only 12 smartphone models out of about 300 in the Indian market supported NavIC.

However, in early September, MediaTek representatives announced that all new chipsets for 5G smartphones will support NavIC. According to the company's calculations, in the next two years, about 80% of smartphones will be capable of working with 5G. Qualcomm says it has been collaborating with the Indian Space Agency on NavIC implementation for years and will continue to do so in the future.

One of the most important challenges for manufacturers is the need to convince the Indian authorities to move the NavIC to the L1 frequency, already used by GPS, instead of the L5 used now. This would reduce the cost of introducing new solutions. ISRO itself says that this is not yet possible - such functionality will appear only in 2024-2025, as more satellites are launched.





Head of content quits Twitch, coinciding with pay cuts for popular streamers.
September 26, 2022

Twitch Head of Content Constance Knight informed staff of her departure from the company on the same day that the change in streamer rewards policy was announced. In a letter to staff, she stated that she was embarking on "a new adventure that will provide exciting opportunities for growth both professionally and personally." Knight previously held similar roles at Instagram* and YouTube.

Knight resigned after Amazon-owned platform Twitch announced a cut in payouts to top streamers a few days ago. According to the new rules, premium streamers will receive 70% of the income only from the first $100,000, after which their earnings will be reduced to 50%. This change will take effect on or after June 1, 2023 for those whose current contracts are for a longer period. According to Twitch, this innovation will not affect 90% of the platform's streamers, given their current earnings. Company officials refrain from commenting on Knight's resignation.

The announced policy changes have exacerbated fears by current and former Twitch employees that the platform is losing touch with content creators that attract millions of viewers. Although only a small number of streamers receive increased income through a premium subscription, Twitch data suggests that about 22,000 content creators expected to interact with the platform under such conditions. According to the source, Twitch plans to focus on incentivizing streamers to show ad content.

* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





Intel to build advanced chip packaging plant in northern Italy.
September 26, 2022

The Italian government and Intel have chosen the municipality of Vigazio, located near Verona in the Venice region in the northern part of the country, as the preferred site for the construction of a large microchip manufacturing plant. This is just part of Intel's plan, announced last March, to invest 80 billion euros in new manufacturing facilities in Europe over the next ten years.

Initially, investments in the amount of 4.5 billion euros are envisaged for Italy, but in the future they may increase. Intel said that the plant in the country will create 1,500 jobs at the enterprise itself, as well as 3,500 jobs with suppliers and partners of the company. Production will start between 2025 and 2027. In particular, the company will organize the assembly and packaging of chips in accordance with new technological solutions.

The parties detailed the nuances of the agreement in early September. Representatives from Intel and Italian authorities declined to comment as negotiations are ongoing and confidential.

Located near Verona, the commune of Vigazio is located near the highway and the Brenner railway - in addition to it, another site located in the Piedmont region was included in the "short list" of potential construction sites. One of the reasons for choosing Vigasio is the region's connection with Germany, in particular Magdeburg, where, according to sources, Intel intends to build two more factories. It is known that the possibility of building the company's factories in other Italian provinces was also considered earlier.

Close associates of outgoing Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi are set to hold behind-the-scenes talks with successors to secure a deal with the semiconductor maker. Earlier it was reported that the official Rome is ready to invest 40% of all planned costs of Intel in Italy. It is necessary that the draft agreement be supported by the new government before the completion of the deal, which will probably announce the deal.

Rome is also known to be in talks with Franco-Italian STMicroelectronics, Taiwanese chip makers MEMC Electronic Materials and TSMC, and Israel's Tower Semiconductor, which Intel acquired earlier this year, to develop the semiconductor industry.





Tomorrow night, the NASA DART kamikaze probe will crash into an asteroid - you can watch it online.
September 26, 2022

The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission, in which a spacecraft crashes into an asteroid to change its flight path, is coming to its logical conclusion. The DART kamikaze probe will collide with the asteroid Dimorph next night, September 27th.

The DART planetary protection mission is being implemented to test the possibility of changing the flight path of space objects potentially dangerous to the Earth. The kamikaze probe went into flight in November 2021. During his journey, he approached a system of two asteroids located at a distance of about 11 million kilometers from our planet. The Didim and Dimorph objects have different sizes: the diameter of the first is 780 meters, and the second is 160 meters. They do not pose a danger to the Earth, so the DART mission is of purely scientific interest.

A kamikaze probe aims to collide with a smaller asteroid. The 550 kg craft will collide with the Dimorph at 24,000 km/h to try and change its flight path. NASA will broadcast the final stage of the mission online on its website and official social media pages. The probe design includes a Didymos Reconnaissance and Asteroid Camera (DRACO) navigation camera, which will transmit approximately one image per second as it approaches the collision object. Naturally, after the probe collides with the asteroid, the data from the camera will stop coming.

The online Virtual Telescope Project, led by the Italian astrophysicist and astronomer Gianluca Masi, plans to broadcast online the consequences of the DART probe collision with the Dimorph asteroid using ground-based telescopes. Since its own Virtual Telescope telescopes are not well suited to observe the collision, the project is collaborating with two South African observatories: the Klein Karoo Observatory, operated by amateur astronomer Berto Monard, and Northwestern University's Mahikeng Observatory. Live broadcast of Virtual Telescope will begin on September 27th. Note that the view from ground-based telescopes will not be ideal, since from the surface of our planet the asteroid system appears only as a point in the sky. However, the moment of collision should be indicated by an increase in brightness, which will be noticeable even from the Earth.

It will be possible to consider the results of the collision in more detail later. The fact is that a miniature cubesat light Italian for Imaging of Asteroid (LICIACube) was disconnected from the DART apparatus, which will fly over the collision site three minutes after the impact and take several pictures. They are expected to be published later in the day. It was previously reported that the James Webb and Hubble space telescopes, as well as the Lucy probe, designed to study the Trojan asteroids of Jupiter, will observe the collision of the DART probe with the asteroid.





Elon Musk launches Starlink satellite internet in Iran.
September 26, 2022

SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk announced his intention to provide Starlink Internet to Iranian residents. This happened after the US State Department issued the so-called general license. As a rule, such permits are issued in certain cases to provide products and services to individual countries under US sanctions.

It is known that the measures were taken by the US authorities after the start of protests in Iran, after which Iranian regulators took a number of measures to restrict access to Internet services. According to the TeslaRati portal, WhatsApp and LinkedIn have already been blocked in the country, and access to a number of resources is also limited. In response to Musk's announcement, Iranian authorities also blocked access to the Starlink website.

While Starlink has not previously been granted access in Iran, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken tweeted that US authorities are issuing a special general license to provide "greater access to digital communications."

On the same day, Musk posted a message: "Activating Starlink ...". A few days before Blinken's statement, the businessman had already announced that he would seek permission from the US authorities to provide Iran with its satellite communications. At the same time, it is not entirely clear how exactly it is planned to provide the inhabitants of Iran with Strlink terminals - it is unlikely that the country's authorities will allow them to be legally imported.

Most recently, US authorities denied Starlink $900 million in government funding to develop Starlink services around the world. SpaceX called the decision "grossly unfair."





Carbon dioxide-derived aviation fuel to be delivered to air carriers in 2024.
September 25, 2022

New York-based startup Air Company is promising to begin commercial shipments of carbon-neutral aviation jet fuel in 2024, which will be produced by capturing carbon dioxide from the air. The most important point of the new development will be the full compatibility of "green" fuel with existing propulsion systems. Planes don't have to be modified.

Air Company has been involved in CO2 capture and utilization technology since 2017. Over the years, vodka, disinfectant liquids, and perfumes have become by-products of pilot production. But the main work of the company remains the mass production of jet fuel based on captured carbon dioxide. Air Company's first "green" aviation fuel was tested in a US Air Force drone flight in August this year.

The successful test flight allowed Air Company to enter into a preliminary contract to supply 95 million liters of Air Company's new "AIRMADE SAF" fuel over five years to JetBlue. A similar contract has also been signed with Virgin Atlantic. To meet these orders, the Air Company began designing factory-capacity production units. Shipment of the first batches of fuel for testing by air carriers is expected in 2023, and commercial deliveries and flights - in 2024.

It should be said that at the first stage, for the production of "green" aviation fuel, "concentrated" carbon dioxide captured during various production processes will be used. It's cheaper than extracting highly rarefied CO2 from the atmosphere, although the Air Company hopes to eventually create commercially viable plants for extracting carbon dioxide from the air.

The captured CO2 is put into a hydrogen reactor where chemical reactions turn it into ready-made aviation fuel in one step. Hydrogen, in turn, the company receives by electrolysis using electricity from renewable sources. Finally, the CO2 for fuel production comes from the ethanol plant. Ethanol is obtained from plants. Aviation fuel is expensive, but 100 percent carbon neutral at all stages of the production of raw materials.

Following the governments of the advanced countries of the world, air carriers have set themselves the goal of achieving zero emissions by 2050. True, 20% of this volume will be fictitious, representing compensation and the purchase of quotas. The use of CO2 jet fuel will help to reduce the percentage of dummy indicators, because this is also a kind of compromise. Even by 2050, such “green” fuel is unlikely to be cheaper than fossil fuels, which means that airlines will overpay for it.





London police arrest teen suspected of hacking - connection to Uber and Rockstar Games incidents not officially confirmed.
September 25, 2022

London police have announced the arrest of a 17-year-old teenager in Oxfordshire. He is suspected of computer hacking and remains in custody, the agency said, but did not provide any other details.

Police officials declined to say what incidents led to the arrest, but some details match the latest high-profile break-ins. Last spring, seven teenagers were arrested and subsequently released, who were defendants in the investigation of the activities of the Lapsus $ hacker group.

Another arrest followed two high-profile incidents: materials related to the GTA VI game under development appeared on the Web - unknown people invaded the developer's network, the Uber service was also subjected to a cyber attack, as a result of which several internal systems of the service were disabled for some time.

After the Uber hack, the company blamed the Lapsus$ group, which has become extremely active over the past year. And the person who published material related to GTA VI stated that the developer was hacked by the person responsible for the attack on Uber. The London police refused to comment and disclose additional details.





TikTok now has the ability to downvote comments.
September 25, 2022

TikTok has debuted a new feature - users now have the ability to "dislike" comments. A thumbs-down icon has appeared next to “likes,” which you can tap to downvote, the platform said.

The short video service started testing dislikes back in April, and now it will be available to all users around the world. A downvote can be canceled by clicking the same icon a second time, and only the disliked user will be able to see that they have done so. Unlike the number of likes, the number of negative ratings is not publicly displayed - it will become a kind of internal tool for moderation, The Verge suggested, although TikTok did not explain what the negative votes would affect. For direct communication with the administration, the ability to leave complaints about comments has been preserved.

The ability to vote against this or that content has long been available on many other sites, for example, on Reddit: for users, this is the most accessible way to express disagreement, and for authors, to evaluate the reaction of the community. Last year, Twitter also began testing dislikes, but this feature has not become publicly available.





In the United States began to build a complex that can remove 5 million tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere per year.
September 24, 2022

In the United States, a new Project Bison project has been launched to directly capture carbon dioxide from the air (DAC) in order to further bury it underground. Los Angeles-based startup CarbonCapture is building a modular plant in Wyoming that will remove up to 5 million tons of carbon dioxide per year from the air by 2030.

The modular plant is expected to start operating next year. In the first phase of the project, about 25 modules will be deployed, capable of removing about 12,000 tons of CO2 from the air per year. In the future, the number of modules will increase.

The process is quite expensive - capturing a ton of carbon dioxide costs more than $600. However, as technology advances, the costs should become lower. The "sorbent cartridges" in the modules, which act as filters to capture carbon dioxide, must be heated for several minutes to about 85 ° C, and this is an energy-intensive process. The authors of the project plan to receive enough energy from new wind and solar installations, but at the initial stage, energy obtained from gas combustion will be used. When Project Bison reaches full capacity in 2030, the system is expected to consume about 2 GW of solar energy per year. For comparison, according to the US Department of Energy, about 3 million photovoltaic panels together produce 1 GW of solar energy.

CarbonCapture is partnering with Dallas-based startup Frontier Carbon Solutions, which is tasked with storing the mined carbon. Project Bison will be the first direct carbon capture project in the US to use "Class VI wells" designed specifically for permanent CO2 storage. The subsurface geology in Wyoming allows the CO2 generated from the capture process to be stored in situ near the modules. The authors of the project are considering the possibility of storing carbon dioxide at a depth of 12,000 feet (3657 m).

Another similar project has been launched in Texas (USA), and as part of it, the world's first large-scale DAC plant is being built. One of its developers is the oil company Occidental. It is assumed that the plant will eventually remove 1 million tons of CO2 from the atmosphere per year. It could start operating as early as 2024. As with Bison, the capacity of the CO2 capture plant will increase as it expands.





US, Taiwan, South Korea and Japan work together to prevent China from becoming a leader in the semiconductor industry.
September 24, 2022

Leading semiconductor manufacturing countries, including the US, are forming alliances to protect their chip supply chains and prevent China from becoming a leader in the industry, according to Western media reports. It is noted that the United States, South Korea, Japan and Taiwan are actively working to organize partnerships around critical technologies.

According to experts, the main reason for such activities is to confront China. The union of the allied countries also shows how important the chips are for the economy and national security of states.

Semiconductors are a critical technology as they are used in many products ranging from smartphones to cars. In the modern world, they are also critical in other industries, including the field of artificial intelligence and the defense industry. The importance of chips was clearly demonstrated during the coronavirus pandemic, when downtime at semiconductor manufacturing facilities led to a shortage of such products around the world.

The global shortage of chips has made it clear to the governments of several countries how important it is to ensure the continuous production of semiconductor products. In the United States, under President Joseph Biden, the authorities are pushing for the need to move chip production from abroad to the country.

The semiconductor supply chain is quite complex and includes several stages, from design to packaging and production. For the organization of such production requires sophisticated equipment. For example, ASML, based in the Netherlands, is the only company in the world that creates equipment for the production of state-of-the-art chips. The US, while strong in many market segments, has lost its dominance in the semiconductor industry. Over the past 15 years, Taiwanese TSMC and South Korean Samsung have become leaders in the production of advanced chips. Intel is the largest American player in the market, but the company is far from being an industry leader.

Due to the complexity of the chip supply chain, no country can handle this alone. Therefore, in recent years there has been a trend towards partnerships between countries in the semiconductor industry. In this regard, the American authorities are actively working together with allies from South Korea, Japan and Taiwan. In addition, semiconductors are a key part of US cooperation with India, Japan and Australia. The US has also proposed a "Chip 4" alliance to South Korea, Japan and Taiwan, which are major semiconductor suppliers.

Each of the countries has its own advantages for the development and production of chips. However, the desire for such a partnership has another common feature - the absence of China in the supply chain. In essence, these alliances are created to isolate China from global supply chains. According to some experts, in the short term, China's development in this segment will be seriously limited.

"The purpose of these efforts is to prevent China from developing the ability to produce advanced chips domestically," said Paul Triolo, head of technology policy at consulting firm Albright Stonebridge, referring to international partnerships in the semiconductor industry.

In recent years, China has invested heavily in developing its own semiconductor industry in an effort to increase self-sufficiency and reduce dependence on foreign companies. Experts believe that this will be extremely difficult to do due to the complexity of supply chains and the concentration of technology in the hands of a small number of countries and companies. China is improving in many areas, including chip design, but it is still heavily dependent on foreign tools and equipment. Even China's largest chipmaker, SMIC, is far behind TSMC and Samsung in terms of technology.

The source notes that not all US partners are keen to further restrict China's access to technology and supply chains. This is largely due to the fact that many companies have production sites in the Middle Kingdom, and the country's market plays an important role in their business. China, the world's largest importer of chips, is a key market for semiconductor manufacturers from around the world, from US-based Qualcomm to South Korean Samsung.

“Not all US allies are keen to enter into these alliances or expand their control over technology that is supplied to China, as they have large shares in both manufacturing in China and sales in the Chinese market. Most of them do not want to clash with Beijing on these issues,” Triolo said.





Alibaba to Spend $1 Billion on Cloud Customer Support to Drive Service Back to Growth.
September 23, 2022

Alibaba said it will provide $1 billion worth of support to its cloud service customers over the next three fiscal years, a measure the company believes will help restart growth in the area, which has slowed due to macroeconomic and other factors.

The program provides "financial and non-financial incentives such as investment, rebates and market entry assistance," Alibaba said in a press release from CNBC. The company also announced the launch of a program to localize the cloud resources necessary for business, depending on the market.

Alibaba is the world's third largest cloud provider after Microsoft and Amazon. Cloud services make up a small portion of the company's business, but management sees them as a critical component to growth and profit prospects. Alibaba's work is hampered by two powerful factors: the weakening of the Chinese economy with the return of the pandemic and the tightening of the regulatory framework in the country. Because of this, in the quarter from April to June, revenue growth remained significant for the first time in the company's history. Weakened quarterly dynamics in the cloud division of Alibaba.

Finally, customer support will facilitate expansion into the overseas market. Over the past few years, Alibaba has opened several data centers outside of China to attract customers in Singapore and Thailand.





Meta* sued for secret collection of user data - the company bypassed Apple's privacy policy.
September 23, 2022

A lawsuit has been filed in San Francisco federal court accusing Meta* (which owns Facebook* and Instagram*) of violating Apple's privacy policy and violating federal and California laws that restrict unauthorized collection of personal data. The lawsuit may receive the status of a class, last week the same court received a similar lawsuit on the same charges.

The lawsuits stemmed from research conducted by data privacy expert Felix Krause, who found that the Facebook* and Instagram* mobile apps for Apple iOS added JavaScript code to every page users opened. The code, according to Krause, allows apps to track "everything you do on any website," including entering passwords. There is no option in the application settings that allows you to open links through the default browser installed in the system, that is, it is impossible to avoid surveillance.

Meta* has denied all allegations. “These accusations are baseless and we will actively defend our position. We designed our in-app browser out of respect for user privacy choices, including how data can be used for advertising,” a Meta* spokesperson told MacRumors.

The plaintiffs allege that the collection of user data through the Meta* apps circumvents Apple's privacy policy introduced in 2021 - updated rules require user consent to be obtained before tracking their activities online or offline. According to Meta*’s own calculations, in 2022 alone, the company will lose $10 billion in advertising revenue because of this. The circumvention of Apple's privacy policy is manifested in the fact that links to external resources from the Facebook* and Instagram* applications open in the built-in browser, and not the default one on the system, the latest lawsuit says.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





After NVIDIA Deal Fails, Arm Seeks Partnerships with Samsung and Others.
September 22, 2022

SoftBank Group founder and CEO Masayoshi Son has announced an upcoming meeting with Samsung Electronics executives to discuss forming a "strategic alliance" between Korean manufacturer and SoftBank-owned chip developer Arm. Other interested manufacturers will also be able to join this alliance.

The upcoming visit of the billionaire to Seoul will be the first in three years. “I would like to speak with Samsung about a strategic alliance with Arm,” Mr. Son said in a statement. Earlier, Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of Samsung Jay Y. Lee spoke about the possibility of such a meeting, reminded Reuters.

SoftBank acquired Arm in 2016 for $32 billion, a British company that designs processor architectures that are used in almost all modern smartphones and many other devices. In 2020, NVIDIA wanted to buy the chipmaker, but the takeover attempt faced opposition from the industry and government regulators, so SoftBank set a course to bring Arm to the US stock market.

A takeover of Arm by one of the big players will not suit the rest, so the decision was reportedly made to create an industry consortium that would guarantee Arm's neutrality and become a vehicle for investment in the company. Industry participants interested in buying Arm's stake will be able to do so at a discounted pre-IPO price, BNK Investment & Securities analyst Lee Min-hee suggested.

Samsung Electronics appears to be the least likely bidder for a sole purchase of Arm - the Korean manufacturer produces many processors on this architecture as a contractor. Now customers are happy with everything, and they would not want to lose confidence in the Korean brand and stop doing business with it, fearing the disclosure of trade secrets, writes Business Korea.

In addition to Samsung, an alliance with Arm could include Intel, whose CEO Pat Gelsinger expressed interest in buying Arm along with other companies in February. A similar statement was made in March by Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of SK hynix Park Jung-ho.

Arm's only problematic partner right now is Qualcomm, with the companies now suing over alleged licensing violations. The controversy could overshadow Arm's entry into the stock market, having a negative impact on the share price.





In the United States introduced a lithographic installation with a resolution of 0.7 nm.
September 22, 2022

Zyvex Labs has announced the ZyvexLitho1 electronic lithography system with the world's highest resolution of 768 picometers. To understand the scale, this is approximately equal to the width of two silicon atoms. The installation is based on the laws of quantum physics and is intended primarily for the production of quantum processors.

“There are many challenges associated with building a scalable quantum computer. We firmly believe that high-precision manufacturing is essential to realize the full potential of quantum computing,” said Prof. Michelle Simmons, the world's leading quantum computing expert. “We are very excited about the introduction of the ZyvexLitho1, the first commercially available tool to achieve atomically precise lithography.”

The ZyvexLitho1 is based on scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) principles and devices that Zyvex Labs has been perfecting since 2007. But unlike conventional scanning tunneling microscopes, the ZyvexLitho1 includes numerous automation features and capabilities not found in any commercial STM. Zyvex Labs is now accepting orders for the ZvyvexLitho1 systems, which will ship in approximately 6 months.

One of the key elements of the ZyvexLitho1 installation is the ZyVector 20-bit digital process control system with low electronic noise and low latency. Thanks to ZyVector, users of the facility will be able to create atomically precise templates for solid-state quantum devices and other nanodevices and materials. Also included in the complete ZyvexLitho1 package is a ScientaOmicron ultra-high vacuum STM, already configured for fabrication of quantum devices.

The developers emphasize that the creation of ZyvexLitho1 would be difficult without the support of DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency of the US Department of Defense), the Office of Army Research and the Advanced Manufacturing Administration of the Department of Energy. Quantum computers and devices for quantum communication are named as one of the main ones for the national security of all the leading countries of the world, and the interest of the military in them is obvious.





Google co-founder's air taxi fails to take off - startup Kittyhawk shuts down.
September 22, 2022

Founded by Google co-founder Larry Page, Kittyhawk, a startup that developed small electric-powered aircraft for passenger transportation (air taxis), has announced its closure. "We're still working out the possibilities for what's to come," the company said in a statement on LinkedIn.

Kittyhawk was founded in 2010 under the name Zee.Aero, when Mr. Page was joined by Sebastian Thrun, who previously worked at Google on self-driving cars and other experimental projects. At the new location, he began working on electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft. In 2017, the company showed a video of one of its cars, and Mr. Thrun then said that someday people will be able to order flying cars on the Lyft or Uber apps.

In 2018, Kittyhawk showed a prototype of the Flyer flying car - it was single-seat and had a range of 32 km, and Thrun expressed the hope that such vehicles will begin regular flights within five years. The following year, the company announced a strategic partnership with Boeing - the joint venture was called Wisk Aero. In 2020, Kittyhawk announced its intention to close the Flyer project in order to focus on the Heaviside air taxi.

Kittyhawk stressed that the termination of the company's activities will not affect the future work of Wisk Aero, nor will it cancel Boeing's obligations to the joint venture.





French ArianeGroup will create a reusable spacecraft SUSIE for autonomous and manned missions.
September 21, 2022

French aerospace company ArianeGroup, a joint venture between Airbus and Safran, has announced the development of a reusable space system that is designed to carry out manned and autonomous missions on Arianespace rockets in low Earth orbit and the Moon. The project was presented at the International Astronautical Congress, which is taking place this week in Paris.

The concept includes the SUSIE (Smart Upper Stage for Innovative Exploration) reusable craft designed for use with the Ariane 6 launch vehicle, which should also become reusable in the coming years.

“SUSIE is a fully reusable rocket stage project. It will be able to go into space and perform many different missions there - whether they are automatic or manned missions - and return to Earth, ”the ArianeGroup said in a recent message.

The manned version of SUSIE will be able to accommodate up to five astronauts, and the ship's carrying capacity can vary depending on the needs of customers. It is assumed that after completing the assigned tasks in space, SUSIE will be able to return to Earth, making a soft landing. After that, the necessary maintenance and preparation for the next flights will be carried out. The ArianeGroup believes that the ship is suitable for a variety of missions, including those related to maintaining satellites, building orbital facilities, working with space debris and sending emergency supplies to astronauts.

“This is a project based on all the existing innovations of ArianeGroup and European industry. It is in line with current and future technological developments in space transportation and reusability,” said Morena Bernardini, Head of Strategy and Innovation at ArianeGroup.





NASA has reported a problem with the most sensitive instrument of the telescope "James Webb"
September 21, 2022

NASA has published a report stating that there are problems with the James Webb telescope's scientific instrument, the Mid-Infrared Camera (MIRI). This is the most sensitive instrument of the space telescope, which is the only one on board that is forced to cool.

While preparing for the August 24 observations, the MIRI camera's filter wheel "experienced increased friction." To find ways to stop the anomaly, NASA convened a scientific council on September 6. The camera itself and other scientific instruments of the telescope, as well as its onboard equipment, are working normally.

As for the problem node, this is a wheel with a set of filters. Depending on the choice of filter, the light passing through the field of view of the MRS spectrometer and the MIRI camera (both devices are in the same optical channel) is filtered by wavelengths from short to long. The problem is noted on the spectrograph, while the camera works without deviations. The spectrometer allows you to learn about the objects in the field of view such details as the chemical composition and allows you to draw a conclusion about a number of observed physical phenomena. For example, medium-resolution spectroscopy (MRS) makes it possible to look for signs of life in the atmospheres of exoplanets.

The MIRI assembly, which includes the spectrometer and filter wheel, is forcibly cooled to 7 K, just a few degrees above the temperature to which matter can be cooled. Thanks to this node, the James Webb telescope has become much more sensitive and takes sharper images of distant objects. Let's hope that NASA experts will develop an algorithm for the best use of the device in the current conditions.

We also recall that the telescope received damage to one of the segments of the main mirror from a micrometeorite hit. It was not possible to fully compensate for the damage, although it is not critical. But if the MIRI filter assembly fails, then we will lose many revolutionary scientific discoveries. Telescope components are not subject to repair. It is located at a distance of 1.5 million km from the Earth. There are no modern means of delivering astronauts to such distances.





Uber blames Lapsus$ hacker group for recent attack on its IT systems.
September 21, 2022

Uber Technologies said a hacker associated with the Lapsus$ group was involved in a recent attack on the company's IT systems. The group gained notoriety last year when it carried out a series of successful attacks on the information systems of large companies, including NVIDIA, Microsoft, Samsung and Vodafone. Earlier this year, London police arrested several members of Lapsus$, all of them teenagers.

This incident occurred a few days before the attack on Rockstar Games, as a result of which the attacker stole a large number of gameplay videos and the source code of the GTA VI game. Both incidents are united by the fact that the hacker who attacked Rockstar said that he was the one who successfully penetrated Uber's internal network a few days ago.

Uber is reportedly continuing to investigate the cybersecurity incident with the FBI and the US Department of Justice. It is assumed that before the attack, the attacker stole the corporate data of the Uber contractor, having previously carried out an attack on its systems. After that, the hacker repeatedly tried to log in to the company's internal network with stolen data, but thanks to two-factor authentication, it was not possible to do this, because the compromised employee rejected authentication requests.

Ultimately, the employee accepted the authentication request, which gave the attacker access to Uber's internal systems. Later, he was able to access the records of some other employees of the company, as well as internal tools such as G Suite and Slack. It is noted that the hacker discovered himself by writing a message about the hacking directly in the Uber corporate chat in Slack. After that, Uber management temporarily banned employees from using compromised systems. The company noted that as a result of the hacker attack, the confidential data of the company's customers were not affected. The investigation into the incident continues.





The American regulator considered Ethereum American, since most of the validators are located in the USA.
September 21, 2022

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has stated that all transactions on the Ethereum network are made in the United States. This is stated in the statement of claim (PDF) of the department against a member of the cryptocurrency community Jan Balina Ian Balina.

The lawsuit against Mr. Balina was filed on September 19 - he is accused of violating the law while promoting the ICO (initial offering) of the Sparkster cryptocurrency in 2018 - then $ 30 million was raised from 4 thousand investors. The U.S. jurisdiction over all Ethereum blockchain transactions in the department was explained by the fact that network validators are grouped more densely here than in other states.

The lawsuit, in part, states that transactions from investors attracted by the defendant “were verified by a network of Ethereum blockchain nodes, which are clustered more densely in the United States than in any other country. So these transactions took place in the United States."

According to the Etherscan service, over 46% of Ethereum nodes are currently hosted in the US, and this is indeed the largest proportion of any country. The second place in the ranking is occupied by Germany with more than 18% of nodes, and the third is held by Russia with 5% of nodes. On September 15, the blockchain radically changed the algorithm, refusing the services of miners to certify transactions - now this task is assigned to the validators, who left a deposit to confirm their good faith.





China tests detonation hypersonic engine that runs on coal.
September 20, 2022

In a series of experiments, Chinese scientists demonstrated the operation of an engine for hypersonic aircraft, the fuel for which is ethylene vapor mixed with coal powder. At the start, the exhaust from the nozzles of such an engine is similar to the smoke from the chimney of a steam locomotive, but in general, such fuel will be 20% more efficient and cleaner than alternative mixtures.

For the first time, Russian scientists proposed to use coal powder for rocket detonation "explosive" engines about ten years ago. True, experts from the Russian Academy of Sciences recommended using liquid hydrogen as the basis for fuel. But liquid hydrogen is a complex system of onboard storage and transport of fuel cooled to ultra-low temperatures. Therefore, the Chinese went further and switched to ethylene, or rather its vapors, which are also suitable for igniting fuel and starting a continuous series of its detonations. This greatly simplified the fuel system.

In experiments, physicists at the Nanjing University of Science and Technology showed that the speed of the shock wave in the engine on coal powder and ethylene vapor reaches a speed of 2 thousand m/s, which is six times the speed of sound. Importantly, the researchers launched the engine prototype over a wide range of temperatures under conditions of oxygen deficiency and excess. In all cases, the prototype showed stable launch and detonation series. This means that this type of engine and fuel mixture will be suitable for flying at different speeds and altitudes. For example, a hypersonic aircraft with such an engine will be able to take off and land at conventional airfields at low speeds, which is impossible or difficult to implement for other types of hypersonic engines.

The same team of scientists in May of this year announced the development of a detonation hypersonic engine using kerosene and ethylene, which is also an efficient and environmentally friendly fuel. Another group of Chinese specialists is developing hypersonic ammonia engines capable of flying at speeds up to Mach 10. Also, the Chinese are developing a boron, which will allow hypersonic aircraft to move not only in the air, but even under water. This allows us to state that China, like Russia, has mastered the development of hypersonic engines to a first approximation, but is not going to stop there.





Chinese CAS Space will enter the suborbital tourism market: everything is like Blue Origin, only cheaper.
September 20, 2022

Yang Yiqiang, a veteran of the Chinese space industry and founder of the private company CAS Space, said that the country's first suborbital tourist flight will take place no later than 2025. By 2027, suborbital tourism in China will flourish and become cheaper than the offers of the American companies Blue Origin and Virgin Galactic. Suborbital flights will be available to most people, which will make them in demand.

Test flights of a suborbital tourist ship without a crew, CAS Space plans to begin next year. The scheme is similar to that proposed by Blue Origin. A rocket with a passenger capsule launches vertically and, after the capsule reaches an altitude of about 100 km, makes a vertical landing on its own engines. The capsule with passengers performs a flight by inertia for about 10 minutes, during which tourists are in zero gravity, after which it lands on parachutes.

Unfortunately, Blue Origin does not disclose ticket prices for this attraction. Initially, it was assumed that the flight would cost 250,000. At the same time, the first tourist paid $ 2.8 million at the auction for the right to rise to the border of space and the Earth's atmosphere. Virgin Galactic also seeks to make suborbital tourism more accessible, providing the rise of a capsule with passengers by a carrier aircraft on a spaceplane, which then sits on its wings and engine on the runway. One seat on the spaceplane costs tourists $450,000.

According to the Chinese company CAS Space, one ticket on its suborbital ship will cost from 2 to 3 million yuan, which is equivalent to $ 285-427 thousand. It can be expected that as space tourism develops, ticket prices will fall, but there are only two or three offers is unlikely to make this process fast and noticeable before 2025 and even before 2027. Therefore, the appearance of Chinese players on the market gives hope that the rapid development of the industry and almost unlimited financial injections into the space industry of the Celestial Empire will push the development of suborbital, and then space tourism far ahead.





The American regulator indicated that Ethereum has become like a security, which has collapsed the cryptocurrency rate.
September 20, 2022

Ethereum, the world's second largest cryptocurrency, continues to fall in price after the long-awaited “merger” update, which resulted in the blockchain changing the Proof-of-Work algorithm to Proof-of-Stake. This was facilitated by the statement of the head of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Gary Gensler, who believes that the transition to a new algorithm may be sufficient grounds for recognizing "ether" as a security.

A major update to the Ethereum network took place last week, as a result of which miners were replaced by validators, network participants who left at least 32 Ethereum coins as collateral. These assets have moved to a business address where they cannot be bought or sold. Collateralized tokens work like lottery tickets: the larger the pledge, the more likely it is to receive a winning ticket, as a result of which the block will be recorded in the “digital ledger” of the Ethereum network, and its owner will be rewarded. This means that with the new algorithm, the determining indicator is not computing power, but the amount of pledged assets.

The SEC believes the transition to Proof-of-Stake means that people who invest in Ether and leave their assets as collateral treat their assets as something resembling securities, and not as to cryptocurrency. This is especially true in light of the fact that very few people use Ethereum to pay for real-world purchases. In particular, this position was supported by the head of the SEC, Mr. Gensler.

“From the point of view of the coin, <…> this is another sign that, according to the Howey test, investors expect profits based on the effort of others,” Gensler said. The Howey Test was developed by the US Supreme Court to determine whether a financial transaction is an investment in a security. It is considered positive if four conditions are met: funds are invested, the investor expects to receive a profit, investments are made in a common enterprise, the expected profit is related to the activities of other persons.

This position of the official in relation to Ethereum did not add optimism to crypto investors. As a result, the exchange rate accelerated the fall that began after the transition to the Proof-of-Stake algorithm. Last week, before the "merger", the price of Ethereum reached $1740, now the second most popular cryptocurrency in the world is trading around $1350, and a little earlier the rate fell even below $1300. Since the switch last Thursday, the exchange rate has fallen by about 15%.

In addition to Ethereum, the Proof-of-Stake algorithm is currently used by Cardano and Solana cryptocurrencies. At the same time, during 2022, Cardano fell in price by 80% compared to the maximum indicators of the previous year, and Solana - by 78%.





Two earthquakes hit Taiwan: there is destruction, but semiconductor production survived.
September 19, 2022

The island of Taiwan has experienced two earthquakes in the past two days, ranging in magnitude from 5.9 to 6.8 on the Richter scale. The epicenters are located in the eastern and southeastern parts of the island, respectively, and although bridges and roads were destroyed in their immediate vicinity, the infrastructure associated with the production of semiconductor products was not damaged. Local businesses can continue to produce it without interruption.

According to UMC CFO Chi-tung Liu, some of the company's production lines were automatically shut down at the time of the tremors, but they returned to normal operation this morning. As a rule, such incidents can lead to the fact that some of the processed products become unsuitable for further use, but so far manufacturers are in no hurry to report damage.

Representatives of the Ministry of Economy of Taiwan, located in Hsinchu, Taichung and Tainan, specialized technology parks were not particularly affected. The water and electricity supply to the relevant industries did not stop either, which is critical for maintaining their continuous operation. TSMC, Micron Taiwan, Siliconware and AUO reported no earthquake damage. After a devastating natural disaster in 1999, the Taiwanese authorities impose special seismic requirements on the objects under construction on the island - they must withstand tremors of magnitude up to 6 on the Richter scale.

Chip makers in Taiwan weathered the quake relatively well, according to TrendForce. Even if memory manufacturers had to resort to emergency shutdowns, stocks of finished products built up due to reduced demand will help ensure uninterrupted supply. LCD panel manufacturers were also not significantly affected by the quake, as they, too, are suffering from oversupplied warehouses, lowering the capacity of factories in Taiwan. Some enterprises were stopped even before the earthquakes for planned repairs and modernization. A similar situation is observed in the segment of production of passive electronic components.





Gorgeous transitional spiral galaxy.
September 18, 2022

The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has released a stunning image of an object designated NGC 1961. The image was transmitted to Earth from the Hubble Space Telescope.

The named structure is located at a distance of approximately 180 million light-years from us in the constellation Giraffe. NGC 1961 is a transitional spiral galaxy that, when classified, falls into the region between barred and unbarred spiral galaxies.

In addition, NGC 1961 has an active core: processes take place here, accompanied by the release of a huge amount of energy. Moreover, this cannot be explained by the activity of individual stars and gas-dust complexes. It is believed that in the "heart" of such a galaxy there is a supermassive black hole, which is the source of radiation of increased intensity.





U.S. Court of Appeals reinstates Texas law banning social media from moderating content based on political opinions.
September 18, 2022

The United States Court of Appeals upheld a law passed in the state of Texas the day before, which prohibits social network administrations from moderating users' posts because of political views, as well as blocking users themselves for similar reasons. The administrations of social networks warn that the presence of dangerous content on the platforms may increase.

The unanimous decision of the three judges of the Fifth US Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans leaves the country's Supreme Court the opportunity to determine the fate of the law, which, according to its authors and supporters, is necessary for tech giants to stop suppressing the expression of political views of some users on the platforms.

The document was passed by the Texas legislature and signed by the governor last September. After that, its action was repeatedly suspended and resumed by decisions of courts of various instances. Opponents were the human rights organization NetChoice and the Computer and Communications Industry Association, which includes Facebook*, Twitter and YouTube. They seek to retain the right to moderate content at their discretion in cases where user posts, in the opinion of platform administrators, can lead to manifestations of violence. The law, they are sure, will untie the hands of extremists: Nazis, terrorists and governments of countries hostile to the United States.

The Texas law prohibits social media administrators with more than 50 million monthly active users from censoring users based on their point of view, and allows social media users or the state's attorney general to sue to enforce it. In May, the Eleventh US Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta blocked a similar law in Florida, arguing that it violates the right of social media owners to free speech. Since the decisions of the Fifth and Eleventh courts contradict each other, the losers in the latter case get grounds to appeal to the US Supreme Court.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





Security research: through the webcam, you can read the text on the screen by the reflection in the glasses.
September 18, 2022

Researchers from the University of Michigan in the US and Zhejiang University in China conducted a study that shows the possibility of inadvertent disclosure of confidential information on a computer screen due to the reflection in users' glasses. For now, interception is limited to 28pt (10mm) fonts, but as laptop cameras improve, smaller text will be able to be read.

The results of the research were reported in the article "Private Eye: On the Limits of Textual Screen Peeking through Eyeglass Reflections in Video Conferencing", which is available at the link on the ArXiv website. “Our work explores and characterizes viable threat models based on optical attacks using multi-frame super-resolution techniques for video frame sequences,” the scientists explain in their paper.

Under controlled laboratory conditions, a 720p camera was able to reconstruct and recognize screen texts about 10mm high with over 75% accuracy, which corresponds to a font size of 28 pt. This font is commonly used for headings and presentations. Obviously, in this case, the employer will be able to control what remote employees do, and there is also a security threat during negotiations.

It can be expected that neural networks will have their say in recognizing images on screens by reflection in glasses. Therefore, the threat cannot be treated coolly. Scientists advise developers of applications for teleconferencing to create filters for blurring the images of glasses, as they offer their own unique algorithm for this purpose.





Suborbital spaceplane development in China funded by science foundation for the first time.
September 18, 2022

It is no secret that everything related to hypersonic flights is primarily of interest to the military. At the same time, the civilian use of hypersound will lead to rapid intercontinental travel, as well as suborbital and space tourism. For such purposes, China is developing a hypersonic suborbital space plane, the project of which is for the first time supported not by the military, but by the civil Science Foundation of China.

Chinese sources say that on September 7, the National Natural Science Foundation of China approved an undisclosed amount of funding for a suborbital transport project to deploy a hypersonic transport system. The project participants undertake to create a reusable passenger suborbital aircraft for 10 passengers by 2035. By 2045, an aircraft for 100 passengers will be presented. In each case, we are talking about flights at speeds above Mach 5. Passengers or cargo can be delivered anywhere in the world in about one hour.

A similar project by SpaceX involves the delivery of passengers from one point on Earth to another using reusable Starship rockets. The project should be implemented by 2028, although given the regular “breakfasts” of the owner of the company, Elon Musk, this could happen much later, if at all.

In the case of the Chinese project, passengers will be delivered from airports, not from spaceports. The Chinese hypersonic transport will be lifted by a reusable carrier aircraft (or rocket boosters) to a height of about 100 km, after which the transport will separate and, at an altitude of 120 km, switch to hypersonic speed. The landing of the space plane will also be carried out at the airfield.

To implement such a revolutionary project requires a lot of parallel development and work. Such work is already underway. For example, at the end of August, China for the first time conducted a test launch of a self-developed suborbital return space rocket, and even earlier in August launched a reusable test spacecraft. There are also advances with hypersound. In July, Chinese scientists reported the successful test flight of a hypersonic transport missile that combined rocket and breathable hypersonic engines.

In conclusion, we note that when promoting hypersound, China relies on "breathing" engines, which do not need an oxygen supply on board to operate. The rocket captures the oxygen necessary for the combustion reaction from the surrounding atmosphere during the flight, which leaves more room for cargo and passengers. The SpaceX rocket cannot boast of such a thing. She will carry all the oxygen in her tanks.





With the transition of Ethereum to a new algorithm, the popularity of the Ravencoin cryptocurrency has grown.
September 15, 2022

After the long-awaited Merge update took place on the Ethereum network, and the blockchain changed from Proof-of-Work (PoW) to Proof-of-Stake (PoS), other cryptocurrencies began to grow in popularity, as many miners who remained out of work began to look for alternatives.

One of the leaders was the Ravencoin token, which showed decent dynamics even against the backdrop of Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, Shiba Inu and Bitcoin: miners began a massive transition to a new cryptocurrency, and two weeks before the Merge, from September 1 to September 15, the hash rate of this blockchain increased by 541 %. In addition, over the past week, the digital asset itself has risen in price by 75%, which is increasingly being considered by miners as a replacement for Ethereum after its transition to PoS. Today, miners are faced with a simple choice: either abandon the traditional ways of mining cryptocurrency and become PoS validators, or switch to other blockchains.

Another positive factor for Ravencoin was the official announcement of the FTX crypto exchange on September 12 about the release of perpetual asset futures - investors got the opportunity to earn money by predicting its rate. The blockchain itself was launched in 2018 based on the PoW model - it is an alternative to Ethereum, offering tools for decentralized applications and the possibility of issuing NFTs. The token is currently trading around $0.06 and has a market capitalization of $710 million, ranking 60th among all cryptocurrencies.





The EU wants to oblige manufacturers of electronic devices to strengthen measures to protect them from hacking.
September 15, 2022

The EU may pass a law on cybersecurity, which will oblige manufacturers of any digital equipment with Internet access to ensure its protection from hacking. The European Commission insists on the adoption of this document, the Associated Press agency writes.

According to the EU, cyber attacks occur every 11 seconds. And as calculated in 2021, the annual damage from them is about 5.5 trillion euros. The European Commission notes that hundreds of millions of electronic devices, including smartphones, computers, cars, household appliances, even toys, do not have adequate protection against hacking. Most of these products are not regulated by any safety regulations. The Cyber ​​Security Act, unveiled Thursday in Brussels, aims to increase the protection of electronic devices with online access from malicious external influences.

The Commission believes that the new law will not only reduce the number of attacks, but will also benefit consumers by improving data protection and privacy.

According to Thierry Breton, EU Commissioner for the Internal Market, most hardware and software products are not currently subject to any cybersecurity obligations. If the law is passed, manufacturers will have to take cybersecurity into account when designing and developing their devices. Businesses will be responsible for the safety of devices for the entire expected life of the products, but no less than five years. Market authorities will have the power to confiscate or recall non-compliant devices and penalize companies that do not comply with the new rules.





California Twitter data center out of service due to extreme heat.
September 15, 2022

On September 5, extreme heat brought down a Twitter data center in California. According to a memo seen by CNN, Twitter lost access to its data center (DPC) in Sacramento (SMF) "due to extreme weather conditions" - the temperature in the city reached a record high of +45 ° C.

"An unprecedented event resulted in a complete shutdown of physical equipment at the SMF," according to a memo attributed to vice president of engineering Carrie Fernandez. While Twitter has backup data centers in Atlanta and Portland that can handle the traffic handled by the social network, the loss of the Sacramento data center has put it in a potentially dangerous position due to the risk of failure.

“If we lose one of the remaining data centers, we will not be able to serve traffic to all Twitter users,” Fernandez warned in a memo. In addition, a complaint filed by former head of Twitter security Peiter Zatko with US regulators questions the resilience of the Twitter data center, citing "cascading issues."

The heat wave this year has already led to failures in the London data centers of Google and Oracle. In the first case, there was a failure in the cooling system, resulting in a temporary outage of several company services, and in the second case, the operator was forced to turn off part of the infrastructure in order to prevent uncontrolled equipment failures. It is reported that because of the abnormal heat, London data centers were forced to pour water on equipment on the roof in order to somehow reduce its temperature.

According to the 2020 Uptime Institute study, The gathering storm: Climate change and datacenter resiliency, extreme temperatures pose a growing threat to data centers. “Rising summer temperatures have made cooling many data centers more difficult, and the situation is likely to get worse in the coming years,” it says.

In addition to reducing the stability of operation, high temperatures can also lead to an increase in the cost of maintaining a data center. “Rising the outdoor temperature by as little as +4°F (+2°C) can make air supply and evaporation systems inefficient on their own, and in some situations uneconomical,” the study says.






The court rejected the appeal of Google against the fine of the European Commission, reducing it to €4.1 billion.
September 15, 2022

The Court of General Jurisdiction of the European Union dismissed Google's appeal against a fine imposed by the European Commission in 2018 for violating antitrust laws by imposing "illegal restrictions" on Android phone makers to promote its mobile search engine.

The court upheld the vast majority of the European Commission's arguments, but reduced the fine to €4.1 billion on the grounds that Google's revenue-sharing schemes with manufacturers were not evidence of abuse of its market dominance, and that the company's right to a fair the trial was partially disrupted.

"The EU Court of General Jurisdiction largely upholds the panel's ruling that Google imposed unlawful restrictions on Android mobile device manufacturers and mobile network operators in order to reinforce its search engine's dominance," the Luxembourg-based EU court said in a statement.

This confirmation of the European Commission is a serious blow to Google and strengthens the position of the EU antitrust regulator, headed by Executive Vice President Margrethe Vestager.

However, Google retains the right to challenge the decision again, this time to the bloc's highest court, the Court of Justice of the European Union. Google will be able to appeal the decision of the European Court of General Jurisdiction in two months and ten days.





Fundamental science will “turn green”: physicists think about the energy-efficient production of Higgs bosons.
September 14, 2022

The time for cheap energy has passed, which requires scientific research in particle physics to be up to date. Modern instruments for studying particles and, above all, various accelerators, consume so much energy that they have a detrimental environmental impact on the environment. This leads to a strong opinion that all future accelerator designs should be subject to the strictest environmental impact assessment.

The accelerator complex at CERN, whose crown jewel is the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), consumes 200 MW at peak, about a third of the consumption of nearby Geneva, with a population of about 200,000. In the future, CERN intends to create an even more powerful tool for the study of the Higgs boson and other elementary particles - the Future Circular Collider (FCC) with a circumference of 100 km. It is also called the "Higgs factory". This will enormously increase the energy consumption of the complex, which makes us think about the future energy efficiency of experiments.

The FCC project has not yet been approved, which makes it possible to evaluate the proposed options in terms of environmental impact. Preliminary calculations show that, depending on the chosen particle collider project, the carbon footprint of the Higgs factory can differ by a factor of 100. This conclusion was reached by European physicists who have studied the potential of successors to the LHC. And the largest project in the face of the FCC with a 100-km circumference turned out to be the most efficient in terms of the energy expended to obtain each Higgs boson.

Currently, there are five proposals for the creation of a high-energy positron-electron collider. These are three colliders on linear accelerators - the International Linear Collider (ILC) in Japan, the American C3 collider and the Compact Linear Collider at CERN, as well as two ring colliders - the CERN FCC and the Chinese Electron-Positron Collider (CEPC). Physicists from CERN analyzed each project and came to the conclusion that the Future Circular Collider will be the most energy efficient, even taking into account the impact on the environment of the collider facilities and all the necessary construction work (although all the calculations below take into account only the energy component of the work of the colliders as the most significant).

Specifically, the researchers calculated that the Future Circular Collider would consume 3 MWh for every Higgs boson produced. In second place in terms of efficiency was the Chinese CEPC - 4.1 MWh per Higgs boson. The most energy-intensive is the American C3 collider, which will consume 18 MWh for each Higgs boson.

Given the carbon footprint of electricity production in each of the countries where future and more powerful colliders are planned to be built, the Future Circular Collider is again the most environmentally friendly - the production of each Higgs boson at the FCC will be accompanied by the release of 0.17 tons of CO2 equivalent. The Japanese ILC, for example, will produce 50 times more emissions per Higgs boson (9.4 tons of CO2 equivalent). This huge difference is mainly due to the fact that the Future Circular Collider will be powered by the French power grid, which is dominated by electricity from nuclear power plants.

Moreover, if the Future Circular Collider increases the number of particle interaction points from 2 to 4, then its efficiency will increase by a factor of two - up to 1.8 MWh per Higgs boson and emissions up to 0.1 tons of CO2 equivalent.

As another option to reduce the impact of CERN colliders on the environment, it is proposed to extend the power line from solar power plants in North Africa, although that is another story. The fact is that fundamental science will not be able to move forward in all countries and regions. And it is still unclear how the current energy crisis will affect all this. CERN has already thought about reducing a number of secondary experiments, and this will have to live with.





Worst day since summer 2020: Six tech giants lose more than $500 billion in value in a day.
September 14, 2022

The statistics of the US Federal Reserve on inflation, released the day before, in August caused a collapse not only in the US, but also in the Asian stock markets. Inflation in the US in August in annual terms slowed down to only 8.3% against the expected 8.0%, and this was enough for the stock market to show the strongest drop in two years. The six largest companies in the US technology sector lost $500 billion in capitalization in one day.

If we consider the six largest companies in the technology sector in the United States, then Apple can boast of the strongest capitalization losses ($ 154 billion), whose shares fell by 5.87% - the maximum value since September 2020. Updated their anti-record for the same period and shares of Microsoft, which fell in price by 5.5% and reduced the capitalization of the corporation by $109 billion.

For Alphabet (Google), a 5.9% decline in quotes resulted in a reduction in capitalization by $ 85 billion, and the value of shares of the e-commerce giant Amazon fell immediately by 7%, which has not been observed since May of this year. At the same time, the company's capitalization decreased by $98 billion. Against this background, Meta * got off lightly, since the fall in the price of its shares by 9.37% led to a reduction in capitalization by only $42 billion. Finally, NVIDIA shares lost 9.47% in price and reached 52 - a weekly low, reducing the company's capitalization by $34 billion.

Bitcoin also succumbed to this momentum and fell by 10%, which was the strongest drop since June of this year. Now the rate of the most popular cryptocurrency does not exceed $20,338.

Fresh data on consumer price inflation in the US destroyed the hopes of market participants for its slowdown. Now experts expect that at the Fed meeting next week the key rate will be increased by 0.75 percentage points. as part of another attempt to curb inflation in the country.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





OneWeb and Arianespace agree to resume satellite launches.
September 14, 2022

The British satellite communications operator OneWeb has entered into an agreement with the French space company Arianespace - it will provide support to the provider, in addition, its rockets will be used to launch vehicles into orbit. Details of the agreement were not disclosed, according to the website of the French company.

“Following the suspension of OneWeb launches in March 2022, OneWeb and Arianespace have reached an agreement whereby the launch services agreement may be resumed in the future,” the companies said in a statement.

Arianespace will support OneWeb in upcoming launches, even if they are made by other companies - in particular, we are talking about two missions that were taken over by NewSpace India Limited, part of the Indian national space agency ISRO. In addition, Arianespace and OneWeb will continue to develop comprehensive cooperation: it is stated that the possibility of using the new Ariane 6 rockets to launch second-generation communications satellites will be explored.

OneWeb found itself in a difficult position after breaking off relations with Roskosmos in March of this year. Roskosmos signed a contract with Arianespace for 21 commercial launches of 672 communications satellites of the British OneWeb space system on Soyuz-2 launch vehicles.

European, American, Japanese and Indian players were considered as alternative operators for launching OneWeb satellites into orbit. At the end of March, the provider entered into an agreement with SpaceX, in April New Space India joined the project. In July, OneWeb agreed to merge with the French Eutelsat into a single pan-European satellite operator.




By the end of the year, Apple will increase the number of advertising spaces in the App Store.
September 14, 2022

Apple plans to add new ad spaces to the App Store for the Christmas holidays. The company announced this in a mailing to developers, inviting them to purchase new space.

Apple decided to expand the volume of advertising in the App Store: in recent years, ads were displayed only in the "Search" tab, as well as in search results on the platform. The company has not yet indicated which positions of the app store will be allocated for advertising, however, in July it became known that we are talking about a block in the “Today” tab, that is, on the main page of the App Store, and under the “You may also like” block on the application detail page.

Apple's advertising revenue in its financial statements falls under the "Services" category, which also includes warranty service, search licensing, App Store sales, and revenue from subscription services. Bank of America analyst Wamsi Mohan estimated that the current Apple Search Ads model alone could generate $5 billion in revenue in 2022.

Last year, Apple made changes to its privacy policy on iOS, allowing users to opt out of personalized ads that involve tracking their preferences. Meta* alone has reported a likely $10 billion drop in revenue in 2022 as a result. This also affected the App Store: in the event of a ban, Apple itself lost the ability to use user account data, including information about previous purchases, to display targeted advertising.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."




Google and Meta* Fined Millions of Dollars in South Korea for Violating Privacy Law.
September 14, 2022

US companies Google and Meta* Platforms have been fined millions of dollars by South Korean authorities for violating privacy laws. This is reported by the Reuters news agency, citing data from the local industry regulator.

The Personal Information Protection Commission said in a statement that Google was fined 69.2 billion won ($50 million) and Meta* 30.8 billion won ($22 million). Official representatives of Google have not yet commented on this issue. The representative of Meta* expressed disagreement with the opinion of the regulator on this issue and announced the company's intention to challenge this decision in court.

“We respect the decision of the commission, but we are confident that we are working with our clients in accordance with the law, following the processes required by local regulations. Therefore, we do not agree with the decision of the commission and will consider all options, including going to court, ”the Meta* representative quotes the source.

The Commission on Personal Information Protection said in a statement that US companies did not properly inform users and did not obtain their permission to collect and analyze behavioral data. The agency believes that Google and Meta* collected and processed this data to serve interest-based, personalized ads to users.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





A tech alliance between the US, South Korea, Taiwan and Japan has proven impossible, and it's not just about China.
September 14, 2022

For the first time, as the Financial Times explains, the idea of ​​creating a quadripartite technological alliance of South Korea, Taiwan and Japan, led by the United States, was expressed a year ago, but potential participants still refrain from joining this international association because of the contradictions between them. Most of all, membership in the alliance could harm South Korea, which has close economic ties with China.

Although formally the Chip 4 alliance aims to create sustainable supply chains for semiconductor components from the US point of view, its “anti-Chinese nature” is no less frequently discussed in the public space. First, not all potential participants understand why such an alliance is needed in the context of curbing China's technological development, if such goals are already achieved by US export control measures. Secondly, companies dependent on the Chinese market are not ready to sacrifice it for the sake of illusory advantages received by third countries. The leadership of Samsung Electronics, for example, stressed last week that the South Korean authorities in the process of negotiating the country's entry into such an alliance should first reach an understanding with China, and only then negotiate with the United States. The final solution should be beneficial for both countries.

South Korean business is also concerned about the need for technological cooperation with foreign competitors. For example, the same Samsung is hardly interested in revealing its secrets to its main rival in the person of the Taiwanese company TSMC. Korean businessmen are also afraid that the United States will give American companies an unreasonable advantage. At the same time, Korean companies continue to depend on both American technology and the Chinese market, which makes choosing one side or the other difficult.

South Korea leads the market for memory chips, Taiwan is the largest contract manufacturer of integrated circuits and microprocessor components, and Japan is still highly competent in the production of lithographic equipment and materials for the production of semiconductor chips. Participation in the proposed alliance of South Korea and Taiwan as an independent entity could set the PRC authorities against the first of the countries, which is also a cause for concern. Taiwan, in turn, depends on China in the supply of raw materials for the production of chips, so the local authorities also do not want to create additional reasons for intensifying the conflict with China. The commonwealth of Japan and South Korea is difficult to imagine due to historical reasons, so the formula of this alliance is too complicated for quick and effective implementation in practice.





UK and the Netherlands intend to file a lawsuit against Google for 25.4 billion euros.
September 14, 2022

Google is in serious trouble in the near future. In the UK and the Netherlands, two lawsuits are pending seeking damages totaling $25.4 billion to online publishers in connection with the company's alleged unfair advertising practices.

The advertising policy of Google, the world's largest seller of online advertising, is under scrutiny from antitrust regulators following repeated complaints from online publishers. In particular, the French regulator has already imposed a fine of 220 million euros on the company last year, and the European Commission and the competent authorities of the UK have been investigating whether Google's advertising business provides competitive advantages to all market participants.

Geradin Partners, which represents the plaintiffs, said it was time for Google to take responsibility and make amends for the industry.

Google criticized the initiative, saying that they are constructively cooperating with publishers throughout Europe, and the lawsuit itself is “speculative and opportunistic.” The company intends to actively challenge it.

The lawsuit in the UK Court of Appeal provides for compensation for all site owners with banner ads, including traditional publishers. However, those who wish can refuse to participate in the process. By contrast, due to established practice, the lawsuit in the Netherlands is open to publishers affected by Google's actions. In both cases, the claims are prepared with the assistance of Harbor, which is one of the businesses that earn on shares of compensation if they win lawsuits.

It is known that Google also has certain problems in Russia. On Monday, the court initiated a process that precedes the bankruptcy of the local division of the company.






Google is considering shifting production of some Pixel smartphones from China to India.
September 13, 2022

According to the latest data, Google Pixel series smartphones may start to be released in India. So far, Google has evaluated the proposals of manufacturers located in the country. It is planned to gradually transfer production from China to a neighboring country against the backdrop of recent lockdowns associated with outbreaks of COVID-19 in China, as well as in connection with the aggravation of geopolitical tensions between the United States and China.

Google has become the second largest company after Apple, considering India as an alternative manufacturing hub instead of China. This is reported in the material on the portal The Information, with a reference to a source "familiar with the issue."

It is alleged that Google has already considered applications from manufacturers located in India, ready to produce from 500 thousand to 1 million Pixel smartphones annually. We are talking about 10-20% of the estimated annual production volume.

In addition to health restrictions in China, which repeatedly disrupted production processes and supply chains, the worsening international situation was also cited as a reason for the postponement after US politicians, including US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, visited Taiwan earlier this year.

It is not yet known which models of smartphones Google intends to assemble in India. It is known that in the country itself the company did not sell the Pixel 4, 5, 5a and 6, but it did sell the Pixel 4a and 6a. Data on the Pixel 7 series is not yet available.

Apple already manufactures some iPhone models in India at Foxconn and Wistron factories, and recently the Indian conglomerate Tata began negotiations with Wistron to jointly assemble Apple smartphones. According to rumors, Apple does not rule out the production of models of the iPhone 14 series here.





Majority of Twitter shareholders voted in favor of Elon Musk deal.
September 13, 2022

Preparations for Elon Musk's purchase of Twitter's assets are proceeding as planned, although the very future of this transaction remains in question in light of the buyer's unwillingness to complete it on the terms agreed in April. Back in June, the board of directors of the company recommended that shareholders approve the deal, and the voting that began this week has already gained a sufficient number of votes in favor of it.

Formally, as Reuters explains, the voting of Twitter shareholders should end today, but already on Monday, according to informed sources, the number of votes was collected, allowing us to talk about the approval of the transaction by the majority of the company's shareholders. Recall that under the terms agreed in April, Elon Musk must pay $54.20 per share. Now the exchange rate of these securities hardly exceeds $41.

The day before, Twitter's lawyers also said that the latest of the three reasons why Elon Musk considers it possible to refuse to buy assets of the social network is not convincing and serves as a basis for breaking the April agreements. The June severance payment to former Twitter chief information security officer Peiter Zatko of $7.75 million does not violate business-as-usual requirements, the company said.

Large institutional investors who own shares of Twitter, according to The Wall Street Journal, also voted in favor of the deal. Elon Musk himself, although he controls a 9.6% stake in Twitter, did not take part in the voting, and may well delegate the voting rights of his company's shares to the board of directors. The trial in the case of Twitter against Elon Musk is scheduled for October 17, and if the verdict in favor of the company is delivered within five business days, then formally the deal can still be closed by October 24, as originally planned.





Instagram*'s attempt to compete with TikTok failed - Reels never became a mainstream service.
September 13, 2022

Instagram*'s attempt to beat TikTok on its own footing has already cost its Meta* subsidiary millions of dollars. At the same time, numerous updates to the application and other steps seem to only annoy the audience, including the stars - despite all the efforts on the Reels platform, too many users publish only secondary content from other sites on it.

According to the portal The Verge, an internal Meta* report released in August, the so-called. Creators x Reels State of the Union 2022, showing that users spend a combined 197.8 million hours daily on TikTok, compared to just 17.6 million hours on Instagram* Reels. What's more, an August report indicates that Reels user engagement has dropped 13.6% over the past four weeks.

One of the main problems for Instagram* is the lack of original content in Reels. About a third of all videos published here are reposts from other platforms. At one time, TikTok videos literally flooded the service, after which Instagram* threatened to downgrade such materials in recommendations. To convince people to release content specifically for Instagram* and Facebook*, Meta* has even pledged $1 billion in creator payouts before the end of the year. So far, according to the report, Reels' authors have only been paid $120 million so far.

However, according to a Meta* representative, the information from the report is outdated and does not correspond to current realities, in fact, representing a “snapshot” of the situation at a certain point in time. Creators and businesses are seeing promising results, with Reels monetization growth higher than expected, according to the company. At the same time, more people are watching content and creating content in Reels than ever before. Moreover, the information about the allocated $120 million is no longer relevant, although Meta* did not provide any new data.

As Meta* increasingly tried to reorganize Instagram* into a kind of TikTok, this met with increasing rejection from users. So, in July, a post calling on the social network to “stop trying to be TikTok” went viral — it received the support of stars and millions of regular users, effectively forcing Instagram * to abandon some of the proposed changes. According to the report, the number of Instagram* users who believe that the social network “takes care of them” has dropped rapidly in recent years, from 70% in 2019 to around 20% in the summer of 2022.

Of course, Meta* said that the data is inaccurate and does not reflect current information, but they never shared the “correct” information.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





Google has created a startup Aalyria, which will be engaged in ultra-fast laser communication on Earth and in space.
September 13, 2022

Last Monday, Google introduced the public to a new startup, Aalyria, formed on the basis of the team behind the secret Minkowski project. According to a press release from Aalyria, the startup will operate "ultra-fast, ultra-secure, and highly efficient communications networks that span land, sea, air, and near and deep space."

Startup Aalyria announced that it has Tightbeam laser communication technology at its disposal, surpassing all existing technologies in scale and speed and "dramatically improving satellite communications, Wi-Fi on planes and ships, and cellular communications everywhere." The Aalyria software platform has already been used in several Google aerospace networking projects.

Aalyria is led by CEO Chris Taylor, a national security expert who previously ran companies that worked with the government. Aalyria's advisory board includes several former Google employees and executives. The startup already has an $8.7 million commercial contract with a division of the US Department of Defense.

Alphabet, the parent company of Google, earlier this year transferred technologies, intellectual property, patents created and registered for almost a decade, as well as office space and other assets to Aalyria earlier this year, CNBC reported. At the same time, Google became the owner of a minority stake in the startup.

Due to the reduction in advertising revenue, Alphabet is abandoning individual projects that turned out to be unpromising, spinning others into separate companies in order to find sources of external funding. In particular, Alphabet closed the Makani project, which was engaged in the creation of kites for the production of electricity, as well as the Loon project, which provided high-speed Internet to remote regions of the world using balloons located in the stratosphere.





NASA has moved the launch date for the Artemis 1 mission - the flight to the Moon will take place no earlier than September 27.
September 13, 2022

NASA announced an adjustment in the timing of tests of the SLS rocket with cryogenic fueling and the launch of the Artemis I mission. Trial fueling of the rocket will take place no earlier than September 21, and the windows of September 27 and October 2 are selected for launch to the Moon.

Another attempt by NASA to launch the SLS launch vehicle with the Orion spacecraft to the Moon failed on September 2 after the discovery of a liquid hydrogen leak at the point of connection of the main fuel line to the rocket. Over the weekend, NASA engineers completed the repair of this fuel delivery unit, replacing the seals on it in the main channel and in the bleed channel. This node has already been repaired in the assembly shop, but it can only be tested under conditions of supercooled fuel supply on a mobile platform on the launch pad of the cosmodrome.

NASA decided to repair the node at the spaceport without transporting the rocket to the hangar. Testing of the refueling unit was expected on September 17th. Now it was decided to shift the test date to September 21 so that the launch team has more time to prepare and have time to rest (the team has been working in emergency mode since the end of August). Therefore, the date of the next attempt to launch the SLS launch vehicle will not be September 23, as previously thought, but September 27. The second backup date with a window of 106 minutes was chosen in October, more precisely - October 2.

Both new dates require recertification of the abort system. Traditionally, such permission was granted for 25 days after the installation of the batteries for the emergency abort system and its pre-flight testing. These works can only be carried out in the assembly shop. The last time the flight abort system on the SLS rocket for the Artemis I mission was tested and validated on August 14 or 15. To extend the certification period, NASA has filed a request, which has not yet been answered.

In addition to extending the certification of the abort system, NASA needs to agree on new flight schedules. So, the launch of the Crew-5 commercial mission to the ISS is tentatively scheduled for October 3, during which a Russian cosmonaut, namely Anna Kikina, will fly for the first time on the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft. Shortly thereafter, a mission is expected to return the Crew-4 crew to Earth. NASA must determine the degree of impact of some missions on others in a selected period of time.

The Artemis I mission is to send the Orion spacecraft on an unmanned flight around the moon. This is the first rung in the ladder that brings man back to the moon. The Orion spacecraft has already flown into orbit, but another test after returning from lunar orbit is a necessary test step associated with higher re-entry velocities. If the flight is completed successfully, astronauts will fly aboard the Orion on the next Artemis II mission, and the landing on the moon will take place during the Artemis III mission in 2025.





The United States again spoke about the threat from TikTok - the Chinese service faces blocking in the country.
September 13, 2022

Short video service TikTok, owned by Chinese company ByteDance, has brought together representatives of the US tech sector, regardless of their stance on industry regulation and antitrust law. At the Code Conference held a few days ago in Los Angeles, employees of large IT companies, experts and officials expressed concern that the platform could pose a threat to the country's national security.

Data from the Pew Research Center shows that TikTok is aggressively poaching younger users away from the company's Meta* platforms. As of August of this year, the short video service was more popular among teenage Americans than Instagram* and Snapchat. In addition, the coronavirus pandemic has helped the platform reach an older audience.

Against this background, some representatives of the IT industry and politicians have expressed concern about the rapid growth of TikTok, noting that the service could pose a threat to the country's national security. In particular, this position is taken by the head of Snap Evan Spiegel, who said that ByteDance spends billions of dollars to promote its service in the US market.

“The reason it has been so difficult for companies in the US and around the world to respond to this is the scale of TikTok's investment. What no one expected in the US was the level of investment that ByteDance made in the US market, and of course in Europe, because it was something unimaginable - no startup could afford to invest billions and billions and billions of dollars in attracting users around the world,” Spiegel said at the Code Conference.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai also called TikTok one of YouTube's newest and biggest competitors. He noted that “competition in the technology segment is very intense” and some of the competitors, including TikTok, have appeared seemingly out of nowhere.

Democratic Senator Amy Klobuchar, who is leading the development of antitrust legislation in the IT industry that aims to increase control over the activities of technology giants Google, Apple, Amazon and Meta *, warned of a possible tightening of regulation on TikTok. The senator representing Minnesota also confirmed the possibility of tightening regulation of TikTok in the United States. She did not rule out that measures could be taken against the Chinese service due to national security considerations. In her opinion, strengthening control over TikTok will become relevant when the platform reaches the size of American IT giants.

Mathias Dopfner, CEO of Axel Springer, which owns Insider, Politico and Protocol news outlets, criticized the short video service. He called TikTok the main competitor in the media, content and creative industries, and also called for the platform to be banned.

“TikTok should be banned in every democratic country. I think it's stupid not to. We cannot enter China with Facebook*, Google, Amazon and other platforms. Why should we allow them to play a dominant role in our free market economy? In the long term, we will feel the consequences of this addiction, and these will be consequences not only in business. I think there will be political repercussions with huge impact,” Dopfner said.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





Bitcoin briefly topped $22,000 and Ethereum surged 90% ahead of 'merger'.
September 13, 2022

Bitcoin briefly topped the $22,000 mark this week, continuing to rise ahead of the US inflation data and Ethereum network “merger”.

On Tuesday, the CPI report for August will be released, which will allow investors to understand in which direction inflation is moving and try to predict the future actions of the US Federal Reserve System (Fed) on interest rates.

Previous rate hikes by the Fed, which is trying to curb inflation, hit the stock market. In turn, the cryptocurrency, which belongs to the category of risky assets, has lost almost $2 trillion in capitalization since the November high. Bitcoin has lost more than 50% in price since the beginning of the year.

The “merger” of the Ethereum network, which means the transition of the Ethereum blockchain from the Proof-of-Work model to Proof-of-Stake, will significantly reduce the amount of energy spent on its operation. Ethereum supporters hope this will provide an opportunity to expand the cryptocurrency’s adoption, with experts warning that the “merger” will not necessarily speed up the Ethereum network and is unlikely to reduce the fees associated with transactions.

Against the backdrop of expectations, Ethereum, which reached an annual minimum in mid-June, was far ahead of bitcoin in terms of growth. Since June 19, it has increased by more than 90%, while Bitcoin has risen by about 20%.

However, the growth of cryptocurrencies may soon end, as next week the Fed is expected to raise interest rates again, and this will entail a reduction in the market.





The US regulator will require to promptly remove idle satellites from orbit.
September 12, 2022

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has put forward a plan to minimize the negative effects of space debris - satellites in low Earth orbit will have to be disposed of no later than 5 years after the end of their life cycle.

A vote on a proposal requiring non-geostationary satellites to be scrapped after their service ends is scheduled by the FCC on September 29. It is assumed that such measures will minimize the risk of collisions and the formation of space debris. Unlike the current NASA recommendations proposed in the 90s of the last century and providing for the disposal of satellites within 25 years, the new rule, if approved, will be mandatory. The FCC proposal emphasizes that it is no longer acceptable today to leave non-functioning satellites in space for decades.

Disposal refers to planning to fall to Earth with destruction in the atmosphere "as quickly as possible", but no later than 5 years from the end of the mission. To adapt to the new rules, a transitional period of two years is provided - they will temporarily not apply to satellites already put into orbit, as well as those that have already been approved by the commission, but have not yet been launched.

The rule will apply not only to satellites licensed from the US. It will have to be followed by operators who intend to have access to the US market, for example, to provide broadband access to US customers. In individual cases, considered individually, the five-year period may be revised. In particular, we are talking about some scientific missions.

Although the Starlink constellation is the largest in the world, no problems are expected with SpaceX satellites - when the company asked for permits for operation at altitudes of 540-570 km for its facilities, it promised the FCC that the satellites could be deorbited within a few months, and even under the worst-case scenario, this will clearly take less than five years, since at such an altitude this will be facilitated by the existing, albeit extremely rarefied, atmosphere. At the same time, hundreds of years will be required for a spontaneous departure from the orbit of a satellite located at an altitude of 1110-1325 km.

Dead satellites, spent rocket stages and other debris already pose a threat to future missions. Moreover, over 4,800 operational satellites were in orbit as of the end of the year, most of which are commercial facilities operating up to 2,000 km (the upper limit of low Earth orbit). It is expected that in the near future there will be many more satellites.

Only Starlink received permission from the US regulator for an additional launch of about 12,000 satellites. In addition, in the future, Starlink expects to launch another 30,000 devices at different altitudes. OneWeb also uses a lot of satellites, plus Amazon intends to put several thousand into space.





Apple has entered the warpath with SpaceX: the company invests in Globalstar to work satellite communications in the iPhone.
September 12, 2022

Last week, Apple announced the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus smartphones, as well as the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max. One of the significant innovations in these devices was the support of satellite communications.

We are talking about the function Emergency SOS via Satellite. It is designed for emergencies: a smartphone via satellite will allow you to send messages to the emergency service indicating the location. This feature will help in cases where the user is outside the coverage area of ​​​​the cellular network. If you experience problems connecting to the satellite, iPhone will tell you how to fix the situation.

The satellite communication service in the iPhone operates on the basis of the Globalstar system, which unites 24 spacecraft. The service will be available in the United States and Canada, but not all guests from other countries will be able to use it. It is important to note that communication is two-way, so that when a message is sent in an emergency, the user will receive a notification that the message has been delivered.

“We have established relay centers that are staffed with highly trained emergency response professionals ready to receive your messages and contact emergency services on your behalf,” said Ashley Williams, Apple's manager of satellite modeling.

According to Reuters, Apple has invested $450 million in the development of satellite infrastructure, with Globalstar receiving the bulk of these funds. In particular, Apple agreed to pay 95% of the cost of new satellites responsible for the operation of the Emergency SOS via Satellite function. Analysts estimate that such spacecraft will require Apple to invest about $50 million through 2026. All told, Apple could pay Globalstar up to $110 million next year alone.

For iPhone 14 owners, the emergency satellite feature will be free for the first two years. The cost of a subscription after that, Apple has not yet disclosed.

Other companies are developing similar services. So, SpaceX recently announced its intention to connect ordinary smartphones to Starlink satellites. Users will be able to exchange data where cellular communication is not available. At first, only text messages will be sent, including through instant messengers. In the future, it is planned to add voice communication and Internet access. And at the end of last week, AST SpaceMobile's BlueWalker 3 satellite was launched into space, a test vehicle also designed to provide satellite communications to owners of ordinary smartphones.






SpaceX launches 34 Starlink satellites and BlueWalker 3 to bring satellite connectivity to smartphone owners.
September 12, 2022

SpaceX's Falcon 9 launch vehicle successfully launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida. The payload was 34 Starlink satellites to provide Internet access, as well as the AST SpaceMobile BlueWalker 3 telecommunications device.

The launch took place on September 10 at 21:20. During this mission, the first stage of the Falcon 9 was used for the fourteenth time, which was a record for a reusable rocket. Moreover, this stage returned to Earth again, landing on a special floating platform A Shortfall of Gravitas in the Atlantic Ocean.

To date, SpaceX has launched more than 3,200 Starlink satellites, and intends to significantly expand this constellation in the future. The project, we recall, involves the formation of a global satellite system to provide broadband Internet access around the world. Ultimately, the Starlink infrastructure should integrate almost 12,000 small spacecraft.

As for the BlueWalker 3 satellite from AST SpaceMobile, this is a test device designed to provide satellite communications to owners of ordinary smartphones. The apparatus weighs approximately 1.5 tons; its design includes a phased antenna array with an area of ​​64 m2.





Crypto Landing Platform Hodlonaut Owes Algorand Foundation $35M.
September 11, 2022

Cryptolending platform Hodlnaut owes the Algorand Foundation $35 million in USD Coin (USDC) stablecoins. The non-profit organization said it was using "all legal remedies" to recover assets.

“As part of the organization’s mission, we sometimes invest some of our surplus capital to generate profits in the development of the Algorand ecosystem,” the statement reads.

The organization noted that Hodlnaut's debt is less than 3% of the total assets of the Algorand Foundation. According to the statement, the situation does not entail operational risks and will not cause "liquidity problems".

Most of the debt is in short-term deposits. The structure lost access to them when, on August 8, 2022, the landing platform suspended the withdrawal of funds and operations with tokens.

On August 13, the company requested a judicial office in Singapore to stabilize its financial situation. The move was explained by the desire to avoid the forced liquidation of users' assets in bitcoin and Ethereum.

The platform also laid off 80% of its employees to cut costs.

At the end of the same month, Hodlnaut reported a $193 million “hole” in its balance sheet. The firm placed client funds in the Anchor protocol of the Terra ecosystem. After the collapse of the latter, it suffered a loss of $189.7 million.





Elon Musk's dispute with Twitter has a third reason for refusing to buy the company.
September 11, 2022

At the end of the outgoing week, it became known that representatives of Elon Musk officially attached the revelations of the former head of Twitter's information security service as arguments explaining the billionaire's intentions to refuse to buy the company's assets. Musk's lawyers also believe that paying Peiter Zatko's severance pay is itself a breach of the deal by Twitter.

Initially, Musk’s lawyers, according to some sources, tried to proceed from the position that the $ 7.75 million paid by Zatko at the end of June was a kind of “silence fee”, but later the focus shifted to challenging the appropriateness of such payments during the period of the agreement with Twitter, signed in April this year. According to representatives of Elon Musk, this kind of payment violates the requirement for Twitter management to carry out the company's activities as usual, and therefore can be considered a violation of the terms of the transaction and serve as a basis for its termination.

Peter Zatko, who has been in charge of information security at Twitter for about two years, will be heard in court in the second half of October, and he also has to speak to US parliamentarians next week. In late August, Zatko filed complaints with the US federal authorities about the mediocre state of information security on Twitter, and his statements immediately attracted the attention of Elon Musk's legal representatives. The latter initially insisted on terminating the deal with Twitter due to a discrepancy between the real share of bots in the audience of the social network declared, then the focus shifted to problems with information security, and now there is a new reason for terminating the deal in the form of an unauthorized payment of “compensation” to a fired information security specialist.





After the discovery of a new mineral with helium-3 in the soil of the moon, China increased the number of lunar missions.
September 11, 2022

"The China National Space Administration (CNSA) has received government approval to send three orbiters to Earth's natural satellite as part of the Chang'e lunar program," said Liu Jizhong, director of the China Lunar Exploration and Space Program Center ).

The announcement comes a day after the discovery of a new mineral in soil samples brought from the Moon to Earth by the Chang'e-5 spacecraft.

The mineral was named Changesite-(Y). According to the description of the Xinhua news agency, it is a colorless transparent columnar crystal. It is reported that this mineral contains helium-3, which is found on Earth in very small quantities. According to scientists, "the reserves of helium-3 available on the Moon can provide earthlings with energy for at least five thousand years ahead".

In recent years, China has made significant progress in its space program, sending probes to the Moon, building its own space station and targeting Mars, becoming a direct competitor to NASA and Roscosmos.

NASA plans to land astronauts on the moon in the next few years. According to the plans of the American space agency, the Artemis-2 lunar mission will take place in 2024, and Artemis-3 a year later.

All space powers are eyeing the moon's minerals, and it is expected that there will be intense competition for their extraction. In 2024, China will attempt to obtain new samples of new lunar rock as part of the Chang'e-6 mission, this time from the South Pole-Aitken Basin, a crater located on the south side of the moon's far side.

Another mission, Chang'e-7, which will also take place in 2024, will target the south pole of the moon, where scientists believe there is the best chance of finding water. NASA also does not hide its interest in this region. The Chang'e-8 lunar mission is expected to take place in 2027. Ultimately, China plans to build an international research station on the moon, Jizhong said today.





US senators asked what Meta* is doing to combat cryptocurrency scammers on its platforms.
September 11, 2022

A group of senators reached out to Meta* Platforms CEO Mark Zuckerberg to ask what his company is doing to counter cryptocurrency scams on its social platforms, including Facebook* and Instagram*.

In June, the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) reported that from January 2021 to March 2022. More than 46,000 people became victims of cryptocurrency scams, and almost half of them noted that the start of fraudulent schemes was laid by an advertisement, publication or message on a social network. At the same time, the four most popular platforms for scammers included Meta*-owned platforms Instagram*, Facebook* and WhatsApp. In this regard, a group of US senators sent a letter to the company, calling it “a breeding ground for cryptocurrency fraud, which causes significant damage to consumers.”

“Scam ads violate our advertising policies and harm our business by negatively impacting how people interact with the sites. The people behind the fraudulent ads use a variety of methods and channels to communicate with victims online, and we invest significant resources in detecting and preventing fraud on our platforms,” Meta* spokesperson Andy Stone confirmed receipt of the document.

Legislators are waiting for detailed answers to their questions from Mr. Zuckerberg by October 24. Politicians, in particular, are interested in the policy of proactive detection and suppression of the actions of cybercriminals, the procedures for checking advertising on platforms for fraud, the company's cooperation with law enforcement agencies, as well as measures to help users who have become victims of illegal schemes.

* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which a court has made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 “On Counteracting Extremist Activity”.





SpaceX has challenged the FCC's refusal to provide Starlink with state subsidies to provide Internet access in hard-to-reach regions of the United States.
September 11, 2022

SpaceX has challenged the decision of the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to deny the company-owned satellite provider Starlink in the issuance of government subsidies for the development of broadband in remote regions of the United States. In the complaint, this step of the department is characterized as “erroneous” and “extremely unfair”.

In August, the FCC denied applications from SpaceX and LTD Broadband to receive funds from the Commission's multibillion-dollar Rural Digital Opportunity Fund program. SpaceX was to receive $885.5 million to develop Internet access in regions of the United States that are partially or completely deprived of such an opportunity using standard means.

In announcing the negative decision, FCC Chair Jessica Rosenworcel said that Starlink's technology "has tangible promise" but does not meet the program's requirements. The official cited data showing that over the past year, Starlink has shown a constant decrease in speed. SpaceX, meanwhile, intended to offer 100/20 Mbps connectivity to customers at 642,925 locations in 35 states as part of the program. The company accused the FCC of misjudging Starlink's performance.

Brendan Carr, the Commissioner of the agency itself, criticized this decision in August, stressing that it was made without a vote of the commission as a whole. “To be clear, with this decision, families across the country have been told to just wait on the other side of the digital divide, even though we have the technology to improve their [quality of] life,” Carr added.





The fragments of the partially collapsed Galaxy 11 satellite may threaten other devices in orbit.
September 11, 2022

It became known that the American telecommunications satellite Galaxy 11, which was launched into orbit in 1999, partially collapsed and its fragments are potentially dangerous for other devices.

“Partial destruction of the old (launched in 1999) Galaxy 11 telecommunications device occurred in geostationary orbit,” the IPM reported. Recall that Galaxy 11 is a geostationary communications satellite, which was operated by the American company Intelsat.

The report says that “several small-sized fragments” of the Galaxy 11 satellite have been detected and followed by civilian optical means. It is noted that these fragments pose a potential danger to devices operating in geostationary orbit.

“The reason for the fragmentation of the spacecraft by the operators is not disclosed, it can be assumed that it is caused by the aging of the screen-vacuum thermal insulation of the body, solar radiation concentrators or solar panels,” scientists say.




Korean fusion reactor ignites plasma seven times hotter than the Sun's core for 30 seconds.
September 11, 2022

Korea's "artificial sun" made headlines this week. The KSTAR fusion reactor kept the plasma at a temperature of about 100 million ° C for almost 30 seconds, which is seven times hotter than in the core of the Sun, where thermonuclear reactions take place. And that in itself is reassuring. The world needs inexpensive and endless fusion energy. But this event took place almost a year ago (which we reported), and we remembered it thanks to a recent publication in Nature.

However, South Korean scientists told in the article how they achieved success in confining plasma, so we also have something to talk about without retelling the old news, as most other publications did.

KSTAR (Korea Institute of Fusion Energy) scientists set the task of achieving plasma stability at the Tokamak Advanced Research tokamak. This thermonuclear reactor, by the way, became one of the first in the world when in 2007 it put into practice the control of the magnetic field of the reactor using two groups of superconducting magnets - toroidal and poloidal (with longitudinal and transverse lines of force). The magnetic field keeps the plasma bundle from contact with the reactor walls and prevents the plasma from cooling down and damaging the reactor walls, resulting in plasma contamination and loss of its quality.

Magnetic fields can be of two types. The shape of the field with the effect of an edge transport barrier (TBB) leads to a strong decrease in pressure near the reactor wall, which prevents the plasma from touching the walls. The field of the second type creates an internal transport barrier (ITB), as a result of which the pressure at the center of plasma formation increases sharply and a plasma "core" appears. But in any case, edge instabilities of the plasma occur, which leads to a decrease in controllability and, ultimately, to contacts with the reactor walls, cooling, and stopping the reaction.

In the experiment, South Korean scientists modified the VTB approach by slightly reducing the plasma density in the reactor, so that the temperature in the center of the plasma bundle increased and decreased at the periphery. Judging by the observations, the edge instability of the plasma has become noticeably smaller. This led to the fact that the plasma in the reactor remained stable and easily controlled for as much as 20 s, and the entire reactor was able to operate in a cycle for 30 s, which became a new record for it.

The plasma temperature at the same time was at the level of 100 million ° C and it was ionic plasma, in contrast to the temperature records of Chinese thermonuclear reactors, in which they only talk about the temperature of electron plasma (and in thermonuclear reactors it should be twice as high as ionic).

“Due to the abundance of fast ions that stabilize the plasma turbulence in the core, we generate plasma at a temperature of 100 million K for up to 20 s without edge plasma instabilities or accumulation of impurities. The low plasma density, combined with a moderate input power for operation, is the key to establishing this regime by maintaining a high proportion of fast ions. This mode is rarely disturbed and can be reliably maintained even without complex controls, and thus represents a promising path to commercial fusion reactors, ”says a Nature article about this experiment.

The Koreans have found a path along which they can move forward. The global goal of the project is to keep the ion plasma at a temperature of 100 million ° C for 300 s, which they intend to achieve in 2025 or 2026.





The authorization button via Facebook * was removed by the sites of many large companies - people no longer trusted the social network.
September 10, 2022

A few years ago, the possibility of authorization on different sites using a Facebook* account was very popular. However, amid growing distrust of social networks, it has become less popular, and the authorization button using Facebook* credentials is gradually disappearing from the websites of large companies. For example, by now it has been removed from Dell, Best Buy, Ford Motor, Nike, Pottery Barn, Twitch, and others.

Dell noted that people are no longer using the social media login feature due to security and data privacy concerns. The removal of the Facebook* login feature is another sign of Meta*'s declining influence on the web after a steady rise over the years. The company's advertising business has struggled in the past due to changes to Apple's privacy policy for the iOS platform, as well as the success of competitors, chief among them TikTok, a short video service.

The company also suffered reputational damage after documents were released online indicating that Meta* knew that many of its products were harmful to users, including teenagers. Meta* revenues are expected to decline for the second straight quarter in a three-month stretch. Official representatives of the company refrain from commenting on this issue.

LoginRadius, a spokesman for the login management platform, said that this year, a Google account was the preferred login option for sites among North American users. According to available data, 38.9% of users used a Google account. For Facebook*, the social media account was used 38.7% of the time. The company noted that in the past, many companies considered the possibility of authorization through social networks as a promising way to attract an audience, but in recent years this trend has changed, including due to a decrease in trust in Facebook*.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





China can quickly create alternatives to NVIDIA and AMD accelerators, the export of which was banned by the United States.
September 10, 2022

Industry experts say the US-imposed restrictions on the supply of accelerators based on NVIDIA and AMD GPUs to China, including those used in the field of AI, will open up new opportunities for local companies vying for a share of the rapidly growing data center chip market.

The sanctions are part of a long-term US plan to prevent the use of US technology in Chinese AI solutions, high-performance computing systems and supercomputers. Last year, the US imposed restrictions on seven Chinese "supercomputer" companies and organizations, and last week banned the export of certain accelerators based on NVIDIA and AMD chips to the country.

Earlier it was reported that the accelerator Biren BR100 of a little-known Chinese startup Shanghai Biren Intelligent Technology outperformed one of the best accelerators banned for export by the US authorities - NVIDIA A100 based on the fastest Ampere chip. Anti-Chinese measures are seen as a "window of opportunity" for Chinese chip developers to provide their own solutions to local companies deprived of access to American hardware.

According to experts, quite impressive results are demonstrated in benchmarks by Chinese solutions used for graphics and natural language processing. This performance is the result of years of investment and development by the Chinese authorities, businesses, and venture capital investors, including those from the United States.

The rapid development of start-ups in the Middle Kingdom could thwart the plans of the United States to slow down the Chinese industry involved in the development of computer technology. At the same time, it is precisely such high-performance solutions that are used for military purposes, including in the development of nuclear weapons.

According to some experts from the United States, similar results of sanctions have already been observed in the past - by limiting the supply of Intel processors to some structures in China, the United States has ensured that China has created its own chips. Experts are confident that they will find a solution in the situation with NVIDIA and AMD in China. However, some industry experts believe that developing a fast chip is not enough for complete success. It also requires the creation of advanced software that can compete with the NVIDIA CUDA software platform that dominates the market.

Numerous Chinese firms other than Biren are actively developing alternatives to NVIDIA, including Cambricon, Alibaba Group PingTouGe, Iluvatar CoreX, Denglin Technology, Moore Threads, Vastai Technologies, and MetaX.

It is known that only leading startups have received billions of dollars of investments in recent years, and American venture capital companies, pension funds and even Yale University are among the partners. Some U.S. investors argue that it is inappropriate for U.S. businesses to invest in AI and Chinese military technology that could endanger U.S. national security.





Chinese scientists discover new mineral in lunar soil samples
September 10, 2022

Chinese scientists have discovered a previously unknown mineral in soil samples that were brought to Earth by the Chang'e-5 spacecraft from the moon. This was reported by the TASS news agency with reference to the data of the China National Space Administration and the State Atomic Energy Administration of the PRC, which were announced on the PRC Central Television.

It is noted that Chinese scientists first discovered a new mineral and called it "Chang'e stone". This mineral became the sixth new mineral that was discovered by man on the moon, while China became the third country in the world that managed to find a new mineral on the surface of our planet's satellite.

According to available data, scientists were able to isolate a single-crystal particle about 10 microns in size from samples of lunar soil and determine its structure. As a result, it was found that the "Chang'e stone" is a phosphate mineral in the form of a columnar crystal. Researchers believe that this mineral is found in particles of lunar basalt.

Recall that the Long March-5 carrier rocket with the Chang'e-5 apparatus was launched from the site of the Wenchang cosmodrome on November 24, 2020. The return capsule with samples of lunar soil landed in the Inner Mongolia region in northern China on December 17 of the same year. As part of this mission, 1731 grams of lunar rock were delivered to Earth. Due to this, China became the first country in the last 44 years that managed to transport geological rocks from the surface of the Moon to Earth.





North Virginia: a single US state still overtakes both Europe and China in terms of capacity of super-large data centers.
September 9, 2022

According to analysts from Synergy Research Group, by the end of Q2 2022, the number of hyperscaler data centers exceeded 800 units, and by the end of 2026 there will be one and a half times more. Moreover, not only the number of such data centers will grow, but also their capacity. At the same time, 53% of the capacity of the hyperscaler data center is in the United States, and the remaining share is almost equally divided between Europe, China and the rest of the world.

The largest players in this market are the "big three" cloud providers (Amazon, Google, Microsoft). Each of these companies has more than 130 data centers, with at least 25 in each of the three main regions, North America, Asia-Pacific and Europe. Amazon, Google, Microsoft, Facebook*, Alibaba and Tencent are leaders in terms of data center capacity. In total, the study by Synergy Research Group took into account the data centers of 19 largest companies providing cloud and other Internet services.

Amazon, Google, Microsoft, Facebook*, Alibaba and Tencent are leaders in terms of data center capacity. At the same time, as before, more than a third of the capacity in the United States falls on a single state - Northern Virginia, which overtakes Europe and China in this indicator. Here is the so-called Data Center Alley, covering the counties of Loudoun, Prince William and Fairfax. Data centers are mainly concentrated around the cities of Ashburn, Sterling, Manassas and Chantilly.

The total capacity of the data center in the state reached 1.7 GW. In particular, Amazon places a significant part of its data centers here. Other major players in the local market are Microsoft, Meta*, Google, ByteDance. Virginia has become so attractive for data center operators due to the availability of space and energy, developed infrastructure, as well as the peculiarities of local legislation, including tax breaks. True, now local residents are complaining about “catastrophic noise” from data centers, and the power grid is not enough.

As for other regions, Ireland and the Netherlands remain the leading markets for hyperscalers in Europe, where a crisis has also emerged recently - both countries are no longer happy with major players who, one after another, cancel or suspend projects to create and develop data centers. The Chinese market remains relatively isolated, as it includes for the most part the data centers of local IT giants: Alibaba, Tencent and Baidu. In general, analysts predict that over the next five years, the importance of the key markets at the moment will decrease somewhat.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





Chinese automaker NIO assured that the ban on the supply of NVIDIA accelerators will hardly harm it.
September 8, 2022

NIO, considered one of Tesla's three main competitors in the Chinese market, is quite actively using NVIDIA's component base - the brand's latest models of electric vehicles, for example, use on-board computers with four American-designed Orin processors. NVIDIA's recent ban on deliveries of accelerators to China will not significantly impact the company's business, founder William Li said this week.

As CNBC explains with reference to the transcript of the speech of the head of NIO at the quarterly reporting conference, the company really worked closely with NVIDIA in the development of active driver assistance systems. According to William Lee, the existing computing power of NIO is enough to continue the development of autonomous vehicle control systems in the near future.

Recall that the restrictions imposed by the US export control rules relate to the supply of NVIDIA H100 and A100 accelerators to China, and the Chinese company will continue to receive processors for NIO on-board systems without any problems. At the same time, the head of NIO emphasizes that there are several companies in China developing accelerators for artificial intelligence systems, and now the automaker is considering the possibility of cooperation with them. Last week, Geely, as well as WeRide and Pony.ai, specializing in autopilot technologies, said that the newest US bans had no effect on their business. NIO rival XPeng has expressed concern about the possible impact of a ban on the supply of NVIDIA's advanced computing accelerators to China, but the company's founder said that the stock of necessary imported components has been created for several years in advance.





China has tested the world's most powerful closed-circuit liquid-propellant rocket engine - it will be needed for flights to the moon.
September 8, 2022

The China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) has announced successful firing tests of a new liquid-propellant rocket engine for the future super-heavy launch vehicle Long March 9. It is reported that we are talking about a rocket engine with a thrust of 25 tons for the upper stages of the rocket, which is twice the capabilities of the current modifications of the NASA RL10 engines involved in the SLS lunar rocket for the Artemis program.

The new LRE operates in a closed circuit (or in a closed cycle), when liquid fuel in the form of hydrogen and oxygen cooled to a cryogenic state is converted into gas with the help of residual heat from the engine and is used first to support the operation of the turbine and pumps, and then burned in the working chamber like rocket fuel. Such a scheme allows not to take on board fuel for the operation of turbines and pumps, managing exclusively with rocket fuel.

At the same time, the main problem is that the processes are somewhat inertial and this threatens the stability of the engines, especially during multiple launches, which will be important when landing on the moon. And these problems are aggravated as the power of engines based on this principle increases.

Chinese developers claim that they have solved the main problems of powerful liquid-propellant rocket engines with a closed circuit. In particular, they found a way to increase traction. To do this, a new heat exchanger was invented, consisting of many finned components that can absorb heat from the surface of the combustion chamber and transfer it to liquid hydrogen with unprecedented efficiency. Interestingly, the heat exchanger components have learned how to make 3D printing, which will reduce the cost of production. Also, new titanium alloys were used for the manufacture of gas fuel pumps, which allowed them to work in extreme conditions.

The upper stage of the Chinese lunar rocket will need four of these engines, the developers say. However, the Long March 9 rocket is still in development. Moreover, there are plans to create almost a copy of SpaceX's Starship rocket based on Long March 9. What will come of it, one can only guess, but there is a backlog and it is impressive.





The head of Intel said that the company will continue to lose ground in the market, but everything will change in 2025.
September 8, 2022

In the strategic plans of Intel CEO Patrick Gelsinger, 2025 is considered a turning point, because by that time the company should not only regain its technological leadership, but also stop incurring the increased costs that are inevitable in the pursuit of this goal. Until 2025, Intel will have to lose market share in the server segment, as Gelsinger realizes.

He shared his thoughts on this at the recent TMT technology conference, as Tom's Hardware explains. According to the head of the company, Intel management proceeds from the principle that its server business increases turnover every calendar year. Having bottomed in the second and third quarters of this year, Intel expects to return this business to growth, but over the next couple of years this pace will still lag behind the rest of the market, which will allow the main competitor to continue strengthening its position. Only from 2025 will Intel begin to regain lost ground in the server segment, according to Gelsinger.

By 2024, Intel expects to gain a decent competitiveness, and in 2025 to become the undisputed leader in the field of lithographic technologies. According to Gelsinger, Sierra Forest server processors, which will be released in 2024 and will be released on Intel 3 technology, will be a worthy alternative to server processors based on the competing Arm architecture. The Intel solution will offer an attractive performance-to-power ratio without the need for customers to think about porting software to the Arm platform. Perhaps the only problem for Intel can be the earlier release of 5nm AMD EPYC processors with 128 energy-efficient x86-compatible cores, which is scheduled for 2023.

At the same time, the head of Intel stressed that the company's refusal to release Optane memory is not the only step to optimize its areas of activity. He connects the future of the company mainly with logical components, and Gelsinger even sees some ironic symbolism in the refusal to release memory - forty years ago she already took a similar step, and then things went uphill for her. What type of business will fall under the reduction next, the head of Intel did not specify.





The US may create an alliance of 14 states to combat the shortage of chips and equipment.
September 8, 2022

The idea of ​​creating a more transparent system for controlling the supply of semiconductor components was expressed by many US politicians and officials, and now it can be implemented on the platform of the so-called. Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF), introduced by US President Biden in May of this year. 14 countries can join the initiative, effectively addressing the lack of resources.

As the Nikkei Asian Review explains, in this alliance, the United States, as a leader, is going to create a system for the redistribution of inventories during periods of crisis, and this will concern not only semiconductor components, but also medical equipment. Crisis phenomena can be understood as a pandemic, as well as regional military conflicts. A two-day IPEF meeting is scheduled to take place this week in Los Angeles.

The alliance includes the following countries: USA, Australia, Brunei, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Fiji, Thailand and Vietnam. It should be noted that Taiwan was not included in this association, although it is a key supplier of the same semiconductor components. The inventory management system implies the appointment of responsible representatives from each of the countries. Together, they will redistribute during the crisis those or other goods that the members of the alliance are in dire need of.

In addition to semiconductors, this system will cover personal protective equipment, rare earth materials and batteries for stationary energy storage systems. If agreement on the key points of the implementation of the plan is reached, then the parties will start work next year. Some of the countries in the region, as the source explains, are not ready to join IPEF due to the absence of China in this association, since this country is an important source of supplies for many scarce goods.





NASA selects spacesuit manufacturer for the Artemis 3 moon landing.
September 8, 2022

NASA announced the choice of the American Axiom Space to create lunar spacesuits in preparation for the Artemis 3 mission, which involves landing people near the south pole of the Earth's satellite in 2025 or 2026.

Artemis 3 is set to be the first mission to land humans on the moon since 1972, if all goes according to NASA's plans. As part of the program, the agency intends to establish a populated outpost on the closest celestial body to Earth by the end of this decade.

What can be learned from Artemis 3 and other future missions will pave the way for manned missions to Mars, a NASA official said. “The suits literally allow us to take the next step,” NASA says.

In June of this year, the agency announced that it had selected Axiom and a team led by Collins Aerospace to develop and manufacture space suits for future missions to the Moon and the ISS. Two private companies were given the right to compete for a $3.5 billion contract through 2034.

The money will be distributed through a series of "special orders". In particular, $228.5 million will be allocated for the creation of spacesuits for Artemis 3. NASA itself will determine the technical requirements for spacesuits, as well as requirements for their safety.

Axiom Space will be responsible for the design, development, evaluation, certification and production of spacesuits and support equipment for the Artemis 3 mission. Before the final test on the moon, Axiom spacesuits must be tested in environments that simulate the situation on the lunar surface.





South Africa is preparing to turn off the connection of the second and third generations to free up frequencies for 5G.
September 8, 2022

The South African telecom regulator intends to cut off 2G and 3G communications in March 2025 in order to free up part of the radio spectrum for the development of 5G. Meanwhile, the initiative was rather coolly received by a number of local mobile operators.

The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA), which oversees public broadcasting and other telecommunications services in South Africa, has prepared a draft document, and Communications Minister Khumbudzo Ntshavheni outlined a plan to ban the licensing of 2G devices by June 30, 2023. It is assumed that the complete shutdown of 2G networks will take place by June 30, 2024. In the case of 3G, the authorities intend to stop licensing devices by March 31, 2024, and implement a complete shutdown of networks a year later.

Ntshaweni said the ICASA planned the phase-out to cause minimal disruption to the public's access to communications. However, the final schedule has not yet been approved. The main goal of the new measures is to turn off "inefficient" and obsolete networks with an eye to using the released spectrum for the development of new services in the country.

However, it looks like the regulator may face opposition from the country's main mobile operators - Vodacom has previously stated that it won't be easy to abandon 2G. The same position is held in the local MTN and Cell C, which also widely use networks of previous generations.

The proposal of the South African authorities followed six months after the country held an auction for the distribution of spectra, having gained about $ 1 billion, the frequencies are supposed to be used for the development of 4G and 5G networks.

Measures are being taken to turn off 2G and 3G in many countries, including, for example, the United States. However, the process can be quite painful - for example, many security systems and other wireless devices work with old networks, and in developing countries such networks are also used by millions of low-cost phone subscribers.





After the update of the Ethereum blockchain, problems were discovered.
September 8, 2022

After the Bellatrix update launched the day before, problems were discovered in the Ethereum network related to the fact that blockchain participants had not yet updated their software. As a result, there is now a noticeable spike in “skipped blocks”, i.e. the frequency with which the blockchain does not process transactions scheduled for verification.

Before the update, this figure was 0.5%, and after the update it increased to 9%, or about 1700%. Ethereum developers attribute the problem to the fact that the validators of the network that support the blockchain have not updated their software - there are now 496 nodes, or about 24.5%.

In the coming days, after September 10, according to the plan set by the developers, the final Paris update will be activated, with which the network will switch to the Proof-of-Stake model - with it, the blockchain will not need classical mining. The developers have repeatedly warned that up to this point it is necessary to update the software of all node operators, otherwise there is a risk of being in an incompatible chain and losing the ability to work in the updated Ethereum network.

The exact deadline for activating the update at the last stage is not hard-coded - it will depend on when the Terminal Total Difficulty indicator (the cumulative complexity of the network to the requested block) reaches the desired value. Tentatively it will be from 13 to 15 September.





US to ban subsidized companies from building advanced chip factories in China for 10 years.
September 7, 2022

According to the BBC news portal, American technology companies receiving government funding will be banned from building high-tech industries in China for 10 years. The corresponding instructions are presented in the plan for the implementation of the Chip Act, under which more than $52 billion will be allocated from the US budget for the development of the American semiconductor industry.

Local manufacturers, faced with a shortage of semiconductors, have long pushed for government subsidies to develop local chip production to reduce dependence on foreign supplies. U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said the authorities intend to take action to prevent a national security threat from companies receiving government funds under the Chips and Science Act. Such companies are prohibited from investing in China, they are prohibited from developing advanced technologies in China for 10 years. At the same time, the minister said that companies can expand the capacities already operating in China, using "mature" technologies "to serve the Chinese market."

Today, the United States produces only about 10% of global semiconductors used in everything from cars to smartphones. For comparison, in 1990 the country accounted for about 40% of the corresponding production. The Chip Act is intended to rectify the situation.

The Chinese embassy in the US has already criticized the Chip and Science Act, calling it a reminder of the "Cold War mentality". Note that the United States restricts the work of its companies with China not only within the framework of the Chip Law. Earlier this month, NVIDIA and AMD were ordered to stop deliveries of GPU-based computing accelerators to China and Russia. One of the experts called such measures "a blow in the gut" NVIDIA.





Google accused of violating environmental laws for the sake of building another data center.
September 7, 2022

DataCenter Dynamics, citing data from the Nebraska Examiner resource, reported that last year Google bulldozed 2 hectares of virgin prairie in Omaha (Nebraska, USA), violating environmental laws. According to environmental experts, the local land protection law was ignored in the rush to approve the $750 million project, and the site was cleared to make way for the construction of a new Google data center.

It is said that the topic of the prairie was not even brought up during planning discussions, although in the master plan, which requires measures to be taken to protect natural features, including ravines and gorges, cliffs and prairies, wetlands, etc., this site was marked . Any damage or destruction of such areas must be compensated. At the same time, instead of one acre (0.4 ha) of destroyed land, two acres of prairie must be restored.

"The city made a big mistake," said environmental activist Glenn Pollock, who has been involved in conservation activities around Omaha for 30 years. It is no longer possible to correct the situation, since construction work began about a year ago, and Google's plans were kept secret until April of this year. Less than ten stretches of virgin prairie remain in Omaha, down from over twenty in 1980.

It is said that it is important to keep such lands intact, as the local steppe flora with deep roots is resistant to drought and other adverse conditions. Its study will allow developing methods to deal with future droughts. Similar claims were made by environmentalists against Microsoft, which received permission to cut down 2,642 trees on an area of ​​approximately 13.4 hectares in Texas.





The sale of Newport Wafer Fab to the Chinese was blocked again - the British government needs to think more.
September 7, 2022

The UK government has asked for more time to make a final decision on whether it should retroactively approve or block the sale of the Newport Wafer Fab (NWF) facility to the Chinese.

In May, UK Minister for Enterprise, Energy and Industrial Strategy Kwasi Kwarteng began reviewing a deal to sell the NWF plant to Nexperia (controlled by China's Wingtech Technologies) in the Netherlands for national security interests. This happened 10 months after her imprisonment. NWF operates the largest chip manufacturing facility in the UK with a production of 32,000 silicon wafers per month - because of this, the British authorities decided to check the deal for compliance with the National Security and Investment Act of 2021.

The British government said it could not comment at the moment on "commercial operations of enterprises or national security assessments" and declined to give a specific time frame for a decision on the NWF issue, reports The Register. And Nexperia said that the authorities had indeed extended the verification period, and the end of the procedure is now scheduled for October 3, 2022.

Meanwhile, according to The Wall Street Journal, the verification of the transaction was initiated by Washington, and the British authorities announced the verification after consulting with a certain representative of the US Embassy in London. At the end of July, the National Security and Investment Law blocked the licensing of machine vision technology developed at the University of Manchester to China's Beijing Infinite Vision Technology.





Charles Hoskinson called Ethereum Classic a "dead project"
September 6, 2022

Cardano founder Charles Hoskinson has criticized Ethereum Classic (ETC), noting that the project has not lived up to its potential.

While discussing the prospects for mining cryptocurrencies using GPUs after the transition of Ethereum to the Proof-of-Stake (PoS) algorithm, one of the users recalled that Hoskinson proposed introducing a 20% “tax” on Ethereum Classic miners.

In response, he retorted that we are talking about a fund for the sustainable development of the network. The commenters added that these funds are managed in a decentralized manner by the community.

“ETC still makes me sad about what it could have become. This is a dead project that has no purpose or really strong arguments to exist, except for evil, ”said Hoskinson.

In August, JPMorgan analysts assumed that Ethereum Classic would be one of the main beneficiaries of the influx of miners after the Ethereum merger.

The largest mining pool on the Ethereum network, Ethermine, recommended that users switch to mining other cryptocurrencies, including ETC, after The Merge. Bitmain-affiliated AntPool made a similar offer.

A group of Ethereum miners led by Chandler Goh intends to launch a fork of the network, which will continue to work on the Proof-of-Work algorithm. The head of the ETC Cooperative behind the development of the Ethereum Classic ecosystem, Bob Summerville, approached them with a proposal to connect to the cryptocurrency network after the merger.

“ETC hasn't grown since it was born. Over the past five or six years, it has froze, stagnated and has not been able to create any ecosystem. It is quite possible that ETC will remain a giant child, ”the developers of the fork project said in a response.

In early September, the Ethereum Classic hashrate reached its all-time high of 46 TH/s. The indicator is approximately 19 times less than the capacity of the ether network.





Ukraine joined the EU funding agreement for AI and supercomputers.
September 6, 2022

The European Union will provide Ukraine with access to funding for projects in the field of artificial intelligence, high-precision computing and cybersecurity under the Digital Europe program.

The Digital Europe program is part of the digital visa-free regime with the European Union. It is designed for seven years and provides funding for the development of projects in five areas:
high-performance computing - 2.2 billion euros;
artificial intelligence - 2.1 billion euros;
the use of digital technologies in the economy and society - 1.1 billion euros;
digital skills - 580 million euros;
cyber security - only available to EU member states.

Starting from autumn 2022, Ukrainian companies can apply for funding. Work programmes, bids and application details will appear on the Digital Europe website shortly.

The total fund of the program is 7.5 billion euros. 6 billion euros are provided for financing projects in these areas for Ukraine. They will be allocated within seven years.

Membership of the country in the program provides for the payment of fees. However, in 2022–2023, the EU freed Ukraine from them, and provided a 95% discount for 2025–2027.

In August 2021, the Ministry of Digital Transformation and Ukroboronprom signed a memorandum of intent to join forces to develop the digital economy, innovation and artificial intelligence in the country's defense sector.

In May, the Cabinet of Ministers approved the national AI development plan for 2021-2024.





Twitter Fake Bitcoin Farm Raises $100,000 in Hours.
September 6, 2022

A Twitter-popular DeFi researcher under the pseudonym FatManTerra came up with a fake investment scheme as part of an experiment and raised over $100,000 in bitcoin in a couple of hours.

Over 101,000 people have subscribed to FatManTerra. He is known as a former Terra supporter who is now actively opposing the project after its $40 billion collapse in May.

On September 5, he tweeted about allegedly gaining access to a “highly profitable bitcoin farm” from an unnamed fund, and invited subscribers to join farming.

FatManTerra deliberately did not disclose additional details of the investment scheme, but even without this information, he managed to collect over $100,000 worth of bitcoins within a couple of hours.

“I want to send a clear message to everyone in the crypto world - anyone who offers you easy money is lying. Influencers who sell quick trading training or great investment opportunities are cheating you,” he added.

FatManTerra claims to have returned all the money to users.

He added that the experiment was inspired by the account Lady of Crypto, which was accused of promoting dubious investment schemes among 257,500 subscribers.

Earlier it was reported that the attackers hacked the Twitter account of the accounting firm PwC Venezuela to promote a fake XRP giveaway on behalf of Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse.





Taiwan's ProLogium to build $8 billion solid-state battery plant in Europe.
September 6, 2022

Taiwanese battery manufacturer ProLogium Technology Co. selected four European countries, in one of which in the future it will build an $8 billion plant for the production of solid-state lithium batteries. According to the source, the new production site of the Taiwanese company may appear in France, Germany, Poland or the UK.

ProLogium has commissioned Accuracy, a consulting firm, to find a suitable location for the construction of a new plant that will be able to produce batteries with a total capacity of 120 gigawatt-hours per year, the report said. The company will supply batteries for electric vehicles and provide jobs for thousands of people. The new plant is expected to be built within the next decade, but its exact location is not yet known. Recall that last year ProLogium managed to raise $326 million in the next round of financing.

Solid state batteries have the potential to significantly change the electric vehicle industry as they are able to store more energy, charge faster and are safer to use than wet lithium ion batteries. The use of solid-state batteries should accelerate the phase-out of fossil fuels in transportation.





Image from the James Webb telescope used to spread the virus.
September 6, 2022

One of the first images taken by the James Webb Space Telescope turned out to be a tool for spreading malware, cybersecurity experts at Securonix said. The campaign to spread the virus was named GO#WEBBFUSCATOR.

The first stage of the attack is a phishing email with a Microsoft Office format attachment. The document's metadata contains a URL that, when navigated to, downloads an obfuscated VBS script file that runs if Word has macros enabled. When the macro is executed, a file is downloaded to the computer with a copy of the photo from "James Webb", which contains a malicious code in the Base64 format, disguised as a certificate. According to Securonix, no anti-virus program was able to detect malware in the image file.

Securonix Vice President Augusto Barros cited two reasons why cybercriminals could choose a photograph from an orbiting telescope as a weapon. Firstly, high-resolution snapshots are characterized by large file sizes and are skipped by antiviruses during scanning. Secondly, even if the antivirus signals a possible threat, the user may not pay attention to the warning, since the snapshot has been widely distributed on the Internet.

The experts noticed that the malicious code used in the attack is written in the Golang programming language created by Google - its popularity among cybercriminals is growing due to its support by different platforms and the fact that this code is more difficult to analyze. And the best defense against attack is not to open email attachments from unknown sources.





Irish regulator fines Instagram* a record €405 million for disclosing children's personal data.
September 6, 2022

The Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC) fined Instagram* social networking site €405 million for violating statutory data processing practices for minors. The regulator intends to publish details next week.

The investigation into Instagram*'s violation of the European Data Protection Act (GDPR) began nearly two years ago. The company allowed children to register business accounts, which exposed their contact information to the public. In addition, Instagram* reportedly made some minors' accounts public by default.

This is the third and largest of the penalties imposed by the DPC on Meta*. The company was previously fined after it emerged that WhatsApp did not properly inform EU citizens about the collection and use of their data, in particular about sharing information with Meta*.

In a statement to reporters, Meta* representatives said that the company updated the settings for minors over a year ago, and every EU resident under the age of 18, when registering on the social network, receives a private account by default, providing access to their content only to people they know, and adults do not can write to children who are not their subscribers. Meta* disagreed with the decision of the Irish regulator and intend to file an appeal.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which a court has made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 “On Counteracting Extremist Activity”.





SK hynix to build $11bn new chip factory in South Korea.
September 6, 2022

SK hynix, one of the leaders in the memory chip market, announced its intention to spend $10.9 billion to build a semiconductor plant in South Korea. The funds will be invested over the next five years. According to the manufacturer, the construction of the M15X plant in the city of Cheongju, located south of Seoul, will begin in October and will be completed in early 2025.

A company representative declined to comment on what kind of chips the plant will produce and what capabilities the production facilities will have. It is known that SK hynix already has the capacity to produce DRAM chips in Icheon, South Korea, NAND flash memory in Cheongju, as well as factories in China's Wuxi, Chongqing and Dalian. Parent company SK Group also recently announced plans to build a chip packaging plant in the US.

Now the demand for chips is falling due to falling demand for gadgets, which is associated with inflation, the global economic crisis and disruptions in supply chains. At the same time, SK hynix noted that experts predict a market recovery from 2024 and a return to previous levels in 2025 – the cyclical nature of business has become “less volatile” compared to previous years.

The company says the plan to build the M15X factory is being implemented as part of preparing SK hynix for a market growth expected to start in 2025. At the same time, industry experts recently stated that contract prices for DDR5, which fell by 20% in July alone, will continue to fall until the end of this year.





Russia has developed an electromagnetic engine for spacecraft.
September 6, 2022

It became known that JSC "Information Satellite Systems. Academician M.F. Reshetnev" (part of the state corporation "Roscosmos") has developed an electromagnetic engine for spacecraft. This was reported by the TASS news agency with reference to these invention applications, which were distributed by the Federal Institute of Industrial Property.

The invention is "an electromagnetic space propulsion device that directly converts electrical energy from a direct current source on board a spacecraft into kinetic energy," as stated in the document.

The design of the engine provides for induction devices, which are equally located on two platforms, fixed with rods on the seats. They, in turn, are located diagonally opposite from the center of mass of the apparatus. The distance from the centers of seats to the center of mass of the apparatus produce equality of the shoulders of forces.

The engine design includes a solenoid with a non-ferromagnetic tube, a soft magnetic shield and a rigid connection of coaxial solenoid and magnetic shield. Due to its size, the screen blocks the possibility of direct interaction between the Earth's magnetic fields and the induction installation from the end of the solenoid core closest to the screen.

Recall, JSC "Information satellite systems named after. Academician M.F. Reshetnev is a manufacturer of Glonass navigation satellites, Gonets communications satellites, and Luch relay satellites. Since 2020, the enterprise has been working on the creation of the Angosat-2 satellite for Angola, which should replace the failed Angosat-1 satellite.





CERN prepares for European power outages - Large Hadron Collider needs to be protected from damage.
September 6, 2022

The energy crisis in Europe is forcing the leadership of the European Organization for Nuclear Research CERN to develop plans for an emergency shutdown of experiments. It is reported that plans to suspend a number of auxiliary accelerators will be transferred to CERN donor countries in September. The set of measures promises to protect the organization's most valuable instrument, the Large Hadron Collider, from damage. They don't plan to stop him.

In the spring of this year, the LHC completed the next stage of modernization and entered the third working cycle (Run3) with a record proton collision power of 13.6 TeV. This level promises to double the speed of research, as the intensity of collisions will increase and this will lead to an increase in the number of events. At the same time, CERN decided not to renew cooperation with Russian and Belarusian scientists after the expiration of the previous agreement, which expires in the summer and autumn of 2024. But the geopolitical crisis in Ukraine will also have repercussions for European researchers and scholars from other countries.

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Serge Claudet, head of the CERN energy management commission, said: "We are really concerned about the stability of the power grid, so we are doing everything possible to prevent power outages in our region."

During peak hours, the consumption of CERN with all its installations reaches 200 MW. This is approximately 30% of the consumption of Geneva located near the complex. Electricity consumption in the region is ordered to be reduced by at least 15%, which will also affect CERN. The LHC will not necessarily stop, but some of the accelerators in the complex will have to be transferred to flexible work schedules or scheduled shutdowns. To do this, CERN is asking the energy supplier - the French company EDF SA - to warn a day before the need to reduce consumption.

Early shutdown of powerful consumers at CERN will make it possible to protect the $4.4 billion LHC from emergency shutdowns and not stop experiments on it, although the shutdown of a number of auxiliary accelerators may affect the schedule of scientific work, including work at the Large Hadron Collider. It is expected that the shutdown of other accelerators in the CERN complex will reduce energy consumption by 25%.





Action camera GoPro Hero 11 Black will receive a new 27 MP sensor and improved stabilization.
September 6, 2022

Online sources have released high-quality images and data on key technical specifications of the GoPro Hero11 Black action camera. The novelty will replace last year's Hero10 Black.

It is known that the upcoming device will receive a new CMOS sensor with 27 million pixels versus 23.6 million for its predecessor. At the same time, the video shooting modes will remain the same - a maximum of 5.3K at 60 frames per second or 4K at 120 frames per second will be supported.

The GoPro Hero11 Black will feature enhanced HyperSmooth 5.0 stabilization, while the Hero10 Black will feature HyperSmooth 4.0. But the capacity of the battery will remain the same - 1720 mAh. The novelty, as before, can be submerged under water to a depth of 10 meters.

Like the current generation model, the GoPro Hero11 Black action camera will feature a 2.27-inch rear screen and a 1.4-inch front display.

Apparently, the changes will affect the software part, but there are no details about this yet. The price of the upcoming device is also not disclosed.





Apple may introduce smart watches tomorrow that will be “cheaper than the Apple Watch SE”
September 6, 2022

Tomorrow, Apple will host an event that will be dedicated to the iPhone 14 series smartphones, as well as the announcement of the Apple Watch Pro smart watch and second-generation AirPods Pro wireless headphones. In addition to this list, according to a recent New York Times publication, a new Apple Watch model that will be “cheaper than the Apple Watch SE” may be presented at the event.

Apple currently offers five smartwatch models. The most affordable Apple Watch Series 3, introduced almost five years ago, is the cheapest at $199. If the New York Times information is correct, it will be replaced by a new smartwatch model that will be presented tomorrow. This would make sense given that Apple will no longer be supporting the Watch Series 3 with a new software update.

It is possible that the new budget model will receive an updated chip and support for cellular connectivity, which will allow for the addition of the “Family Setup” (Family Setup) feature that the Watch Series 3 does not have. Thanks to this feature, members of the shift who do not have an iPhone, such as children, will be able to use smart watches to call relatives and friends, send messages, etc.

The Apple Watch SE is currently priced at $279 for the 40mm model and $309 for the 44mm model. The addition of cellular connectivity, which is required to implement the Family Setup feature, raises the device's price to $329 and $359, respectively.





Crypto Exchange Binance to End Support for USDC Stablecoin and Forcibly Convert It to Native Binance USD (BUSD).
September 6, 2022

The world's largest crypto exchange Binance has announced an unprecedented operation. From September 29, it will stop working with the world's second most popular stablecoin USD Coin (USDC) and forcibly convert user assets from this currency into its own similar product - Binance USD (BUSD).

The same will happen with two smaller scale stablecoins - Pax Dollar (USDP) and TrueUSD (TUSD). USDC, USDP or TUSD holders will automatically receive BUSD instead on all Binance platforms. However, they will be able to receive the corresponding cryptocurrencies if they are withdrawn from the Binance exchange at a rate of 1:1.

In fact, such actions are aimed at taking USDC, with a market capitalization of about $52 million, out of the race for supremacy in the field of stablecoins, where Tether (USDT) is leading. This not only bodes inconvenience to users, but also to Circle Internet Financial, which is an issuer of USDC and was planning an IPO.

Today, stablecoin BUSD is the third in market capitalization after USDT and USDC, it is $19.5 billion. TUSD and USDP are in fifth and sixth places with a market capitalization of $1 billion and $945 million, respectively. Once the three cryptocurrencies are ousted from the world's largest exchange, it will gain a strong competitive edge against USDT.

USDT accounts for 44% of the stablecoin market today, but with Binance's new move, that could change. At the same time, stablecoins are indispensable in the crypto market and in many cases replace classic, fiat assets, primarily US dollars.





Asian Institutions Are More Interested in ZK Solutions Than GameFi.
September 6, 2022

Institutional investors from Asia are more interested in infrastructure projects than in new segments like DeFi and GameFi. Huobi Research researchers came to this conclusion after conducting a survey among more than 20 companies.

“Most large investors basically prefer to explore than to act,” the experts emphasized.

Huobi Research noted that the institutions are most looking at infrastructure projects "with a focus on ZK, new first-layer networks and cross-platform software."

“DeFi is the most preferred area for institutions, while GameFi and social networks remain controversial areas,” the researchers noted.

According to the survey, large companies see ZK solutions as "one of the main potential drivers of the next cycle." They also eschew DeFi platforms for the most part, focusing on relatively mature projects with stable cash flow.

Investors are even more skeptical about SocialFi projects that are still in the early stages of development. Many of them are characterized by "vague patterns and unstable paradigms".

“If they rely only on tokenomics and social media-based transformation of the Web2 era, they will have a hard time getting users from traditional giants,” the researchers stressed.

The perception of GameFi is also controversial: some companies believe that games can effectively attract additional users, others consider the business models on the market unsustainable.

Earlier, experts from the Fed's research group called the DeFi sector a potential threat to financial stability.





TikTok denies reports of user data being leaked.
September 6, 2022

The TikTok service team denied reports of a possible leak of users' personal data, as well as the source code of the platform, which had previously spread on the Web. The social network claims to have conducted an investigation and found no evidence of a security breach on the platform, writes The Verge.

According to Bleeping Computer, attackers on one of the hacker forums shared screenshots with information allegedly taken from the stolen TikTok database. The hackers said that in total, the hacked server contained records of more than 2 billion users of the platform, as well as 790 GB in the form of user data, statistics, platform code and other resources.

“We have confirmed that all of the data samples in question are in the public domain and do not involve compromising systems, networks or the TikTok database. We do not believe that platform users need to take any proactive action [to protect information]. The privacy and security of user data is a key priority for TikTok,” said representatives of the social platform.

Citing cybersecurity experts, The Verge writes that most of the "stolen" data is actually public information that was collected from the platform. According to Troy Hunt, regional director of Microsoft and creator of the Have I Been Pwned website, which checks the security of user data, the information provided by the hackers was "inconclusive."

The hacker group, in turn, also previously stated that it had gained access to data from the Chinese messenger WeChat. WeChat did not respond to a request for comment.





Tesla Reveals Details About Its D1 Chips That Will Power Dojo's 20-Eflops AI Supercomputer.
September 6, 2022

Tesla has already announced its own D1 processor, created in the company's laboratories, which will become the basis of the Dojo AI supercomputer. We need such a system to create a virtual training ground for the AI ​​driver, recreating real situations on the roads in detail. Naturally, such a simulator requires huge computing power: in our world, traffic conditions are very complex, changeable and include many factors and variables.

Until recently, not much was known about Dojo and D1, but at the Hot Chips 34 conference, a lot of interesting things were revealed about the architecture, design, and capabilities of this Tesla solution. The presentation was held by Emil Talpes, who previously worked at AMD for 17 years on the design of server processors. He, like a number of other prominent developers, is currently working at Tesla to create and improve the company's hardware.

The main idea of ​​D1 was scalability, so at the beginning of the development of a new chip, the creators actively reconsidered the role of such traditional concepts as coherence, virtual memory, etc. - not all mechanisms scale in the best way when it comes to building a really large computing system. Instead, preference was given to a distributed storage network based on SRAM, for which an interconnect was created that was an order of magnitude ahead of existing implementations in distributed computing systems.

The basis of the Tesla processor was an integer computing core, based on some instructions from the RISC-V set, but supplemented by a large number of proprietary instructions optimized for the requirements of the machine learning cores used by the company. The vector math block was created almost from scratch, according to the developers.

The Dojo instruction set includes scalar, matrix, and SIMD instructions, as well as specific primitives for moving data from local memory to remote memory, as well as semaphores with barriers - the latter are required to coordinate memory work throughout the system. As for the specific instructions for machine learning, they are implemented in Dojo in hardware.

The first-born in the series, the D1 chip, is not an accelerator per se - the company considers it a high-performance general-purpose processor that does not need specific accelerators. Each Dojo compute unit is represented by a single D1 core with local memory and I/O interfaces. This is a 64-bit superscalar kernel.

Moreover, the kernel supports multithreading (SMT4), which is designed to increase performance per clock (rather than isolate different tasks from each other), so this SMT implementation does not support virtual memory, and protection mechanisms are rather limited in functionality. Dojo resource management is handled by a specialized software stack and proprietary software.

The 64-bit kernel has a 32-byte fetch window, which can contain up to 8 instructions, which corresponds to the width of the decoder. He, in turn, can process two threads per cycle. The result goes to the schedulers, which send it to an integer computation unit (two ALUs) or a vector unit (64 byte wide SIMD + 8×8×4 matrix multiplication).

Each D1 core has 1.25 MB SRAM. This memory is not a cache, but is capable of loading data at a speed of 400 GB / s and storing at a speed of 270 GB / s, and, as already mentioned, special instructions are implemented in the chip that allow you to work with data in other Dojo cores. For this, the SRAM block has its own mechanisms, so that working with remote memory does not require additional operations.

As for the supported data formats, the scalar block supports integer formats from 8 to 64 bits, while the vector and matrix blocks support a wide range of floating point formats, including mixed-precision calculations: FP32, BF16, CFP16 and CFP8. The D1 developers came to use a whole set of configurable 8- and 16-bit data representations - the Dojo compiler can dynamically change the values ​​​​of the mantissa and exponent, so that the system can use up to 16 different vector formats, as long as it does not changed.

As already mentioned, the D1 topology uses a mesh structure in which every 12 cores are combined into a logical block. The entire D1 chip is an array of 18×20 cores, but only 354 cores out of 360 present on the chip are available. The 645mm2 die itself is manufactured at TSMC's facilities using a 7nm process technology. The clock frequency is 2 GHz, the total amount of SRAM is 440 MB.

The D1 processor develops 362 Tflops in BF16 / CFP8 mode, in FP32 mode this figure drops to 22 Tflops. The FP64 mode is not supported by D1 vector blocks, so this processor is not suitable for many traditional HPC workloads. But Tesla built the D1 for internal use, so it doesn't really care about compatibility. However, in new generations, D2 or D3, such support may appear if it suits the company's goals.

Each D1 die has a 576-bit external SerDes interface with a combined performance of 8 TB/s on all four sides, so it will not become a bottleneck when connecting D1. This interface combines the crystals into a single 5x5 matrix, such a matrix of 25 D1 crystals is called the Dojo training tile.

This tile is designed as a complete thermo-electromechanical module, having an external interface with a throughput of 4.5 TB / s per side, with a total of 11 GB of SRAM, as well as its own 15 kW power supply system. The processing power of one Dojo tile is 9 PFlops in BF16/CFP8 format. At this level of power consumption, the Dojo can only be liquid-cooled.

Tiles can be combined into even more productive matrices, but exactly how the Tesla supercomputer is physically organized is not entirely clear. To communicate with the outside world, DIP blocks are used - Dojo Interface Processors. These are interface processors through which tiles communicate with host systems and are assigned control functions, storage of data arrays, etc. Each DIP not only performs IO functions, but also contains 32 GB of HBM memory (not specified, HBM2e or HBM3).

DIP uses its entire transport protocol (Tesla Transport Protocol, TTP), developed by Tesla and providing a throughput of 900 GB / s, and over Ethernet - 50 GB / s. The external interface of the cards is PCI Express 4.0, and each interface card carries a pair of DIPs. There are 5 DIPs installed on each side of each row of tiles, which gives a speed of up to 4.5 TB / s from HBM stacks to tile.

In cases where tile-to-tile access in the entire system requires too many hops (up to 30 in the case of edge-to-edge access), the system can use DIPs connected externally by a 400GbE fat tree network, thus reducing the number of hops to maximum four. Throughput suffers in this case, but latency wins, which is more important in some scenarios.

In the basic version, the Dojo V1 supercomputer produces 1 Eflops in BF16 / CFP8 mode and can load models up to 1.3 TB directly into SRAM, another 13 TB of data can be stored in DIP HBM assemblies. It should be noted that the SRAM space in the entire Dojo system uses a single flat addressing. The full scale version of Dojo will have a performance of up to 20 eflops.

How much effort the company will need to launch such a monster, and most importantly, supply it with working and useful software, is unknown - but obviously a lot. The system is known to be compatible with PyTorch. Tesla is currently getting ready-made D1 chips from TSMC. In the meantime, the company is making do with the world's largest installed NVIDIA AI supercomputer.





China successfully conducted the first flight of a large solar-powered drone.
September 5, 2022

According to Chinese media, citing the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), China has taken an important step towards the development of "self-sufficient" solar-powered drones designed for high-altitude flights. The QMX50 has already made its first flight.

According to the Xinhua news agency, the flight took place in the city of Yulin, located in the Shaanxi province in northwestern China. According to the participants in the experiment, the systems of the device worked normally, the flight took place and ended successfully 26 minutes after the start.

The unmanned aerial vehicle is a development of the First Aviation Institute AVIC. This is the first large-scale model that runs only on solar energy. According to Xinhua, the high-altitude, low-speed UAV has a "super-large wing aspect ratio" and is also the first large-sized UAV with a twin-body design.

According to media reports, the QMX50 model is capable of carrying out missions using only solar energy without additional power sources. The aircraft can be used for high-altitude reconnaissance, monitoring forest fires and the state of the atmosphere, mapping, it can even act as a repeater when organizing communications. Representatives of AVIC emphasize that the QMX50 flight became only the basis for further work on solar drones, including work on new composite materials, power supplies and flight control.





Chile overwhelmingly rejects new progressive constitution.
September 5, 2022

Chileans voted overwhelmingly against the proposed new constitution on Sunday, rejecting what would be one of the most progressive charters in the world.

While nearly 80% of Chileans voted in favor of the draft new constitution in 2020, nearly 62% of voters rejected the new text with 99.74% of the ballot boxes counted.

Carole Cariola, a spokeswoman for the endorsement campaign, conceded defeat late Sunday in downtown Santiago but said the mandate to develop a new text remained in place.

“We seek to create the conditions for channeling this popular will and the path that will lead us to a new constitution,” Cariola said.

President Gabriel Boric, whose government is heavily tied to the new text, said cabinet changes are coming and the government will be working on drafting a new constitution.

“We must listen to the voice of the people. Not only today, but also in the last tense years that we have experienced,” Boric said. "This anger is hidden and we cannot ignore it."

The president said he would work with Congress and various sections of society to draft a new text that would take into account the lessons of Sunday's rejection.

The center-left and right-wing parties that promoted the withdrawal campaign also agreed to negotiate a new text.

“I think there are two things that explain what just happened. One is rejection of the Boric government,” political analyst Cristobal Bellolio told Reuters, adding that the second is identity politics regarding indigenous peoples and other issues.

The proposed text, which was rejected by voters, was a response to widespread violent protests that swept the country in late 2019 and focused on social rights, the environment, gender parity and the rights of indigenous peoples, in a dramatic shift from a market-oriented constitution dating back to Augusto's rule. Pinochet. dictatorship.

MASS TURNOUT WITH MANDATORY VOTING.
Nearly 13 million of the 15 million eligible Chileans and residents voted in more than 3,000 polling stations. Among them is the National Stadium in Santiago, where Rosemary Williamson, 54, and her 85-year-old mother voted to reject the new constitution.

Williamson, who voted yes in 2020, raised concerns about several proposals.

“The main one is (indigenous) multinationality, and then pension funds,” she said. "I've been working all my life and I don't want to share it."

Diego Uribe, 35, a father of two who doesn't usually vote because he has lost faith in political parties, voted yes in Puente Alto, a poor neighborhood in southern Santiago.

"It's different," Uribe said, noting that he would have voted even if it wasn't mandatory. “Approval means real change in the future, free education, decent healthcare and more rights.”

The latest polls before the two-week blackout showed opponents leading by 47%, compared to 38% for yes and 17% undecided, but Sunday's results beat the polls by a wide margin.





Canada looking for suspects in stabbing that left 10 dead, 15 injured.
September 5, 2022

WELDON, Saskatchewan — Canadian police have tracked down two suspects in a stabbing that left 10 people dead and at least 15 injured, mostly in a sparsely populated indigenous community early Sunday morning.

The stabbing at 13 crime scenes was one of the deadliest massacres in modern Canadian history and will no doubt reverberate across a nation that is unaccustomed to bouts of mass violence more common in the United States.

"I am shocked and devastated by today's horrific attacks," Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said. "As Canadians, we mourn with all those affected by this tragic violence and with the people of Saskatchewan."

Police named the two suspects Damien Sanderson, 31, and Miles Sanderson, 30, providing photographs and descriptions but no more details about their motives or victims.

Indigenous leaders said in a statement that the attacks may have been drug-related.

“This is the disruption we face when harmful illegal drugs invade our communities,” the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Peoples said. The group represents the 74 indigenous peoples of Saskatchewan.

The mother of two was among 10 killed, local media reported, citing the woman's former partner.

“It's terrible how so many lives can be destroyed by imprisonment, drugs and alcohol,” said Michael Brett Burns in an interview with the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network.

In May, Miles Sanderson was listed as a "lawbreaker" by the Saskatchewan Crime Stoppers program, which encourages the public to cooperate with the police. There were no other details about why he was wanted.

The two men were seen in a black Nissan Rogue and were spotted in the city of Regina, about 320 km (200 miles) south of the site of the attacks on the James Smith Cree tribe and in the village of Weldon, police said.

“It appears that some of the victims may have been targeted and some may have been accidental. Therefore, it is extremely difficult to talk about motives at the moment, ”said Rhonda Blackmore, commander of the Saskatchewan Royal Canadian Mounted Police. press conference.

Police said there may be additional casualties who have taken themselves to various hospitals.

The James Smith Cree Nation is an indigenous community of about 3,400 people, mainly engaged in agriculture, hunting and fishing. Weldon is a village with a population of about 200 people.

The nation's elected elders declared a state of emergency "in response to the multiple killings and attacks on Cree James Smith" and established two emergency operations centers, the nation said in a statement.

Indigenous people make up less than 5% of Canada's population of about 38 million and suffer from higher levels of poverty, unemployment and lower life expectancy than other Canadians.

Trudeau said his government was in direct contact with James Smith's Cree leadership, adding: "We are ready to help in any way we can."

The first stabbings were reported at 5:40 a.m. (1140 GMT) and within three hours, police had declared dangerous persons throughout the province. By noon, similar warnings were also issued in Saskatchewan's neighboring provinces of Alberta and Manitoba.

Police bulletins urged people to report any suspicious people and take precautions, including hiding in place, and warned against picking up hitchhikers or approaching suspicious people.

“Do not leave a safe place. Be careful when allowing others to enter your home, ”says one of the tips.

A police alert, issued shortly after noon, said they may be in Regina, one of the province's largest cities, where a large number of police officers have already been mobilized due to a Canadian football game at Mosaic Stadium near the city center.

However, Blackmore said it was not known where the suspects might be heading or if they had changed vehicles.

"What happened today in our province is appalling," Blackmore said, calling the attacks one of the largest, if not the largest, in the province's recent history.

The Saskatchewan Health Authority stepped up its emergency response by sending additional personnel to treat those affected, later announcing that "the risk of a large influx of patients due to this situation is no longer visible."

"We can confirm that several people have been triaged and received care at multiple locations and that a request has been made for additional staff to help respond to this situation," the health authority said in a statement.





Zelensky warns of harsh winter and reports on the course of the war.
September 5, 2022

Kyiv, Sept. 4 - European leaders on Sunday tried to cushion the impact of high energy prices on the continent after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky warned of a difficult winter even as he reported progress in a counteroffensive against Russian forces.

Zelensky, in an overnight address on Sunday, thanked his forces for taking two settlements in the south and a third in the east, as well as additional territory in the east, saying he had received "good reports" from his military command and intelligence chief.

Kyrylo Tymoshenko, deputy head of the president's office, posted an image earlier Sunday of soldiers raising the Ukrainian flag over a village he described as the southern district, which is the main center of the counteroffensive.

"Vysokopole. Kherson region. Ukraine. Today,” Tymoshenko wrote on Facebook under a photo of three soldiers on rooftops, one of whom is attaching a Ukrainian flag to a post.

Last week, Ukraine launched a counteroffensive targeting the south, especially the Kherson region, which Russia took over at the start of the conflict.

Zelensky's announcement came a day after he warned Europeans that Russia was preparing a "decisive energy strike" in the coming cold months.

Moscow cited Western sanctions and technical problems due to power outages. European countries, which supported Kyiv with diplomatic and military support, accused Russia of using energy carriers as a weapon.

Some analysts say a housing shortage and rising costs of living as winter approaches risk undermining Western support for Kyiv as governments struggle to deal with a disgruntled population.

Separately, the US Embassy in Moscow reported that John Sullivan, the ambassador since his appointment by former President Donald Trump in 2019, has left his post and is leaving the diplomatic service. A State Department spokesman said Sullivan had completed his usual tour duration.

Last week, Moscow said it would keep the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline, the main gas pipeline to Germany, closed, and the G7 countries announced a planned price cap on Russian oil exports.

The Kremlin has said it will stop selling oil to any country that imposes restrictions.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said on Sunday that his government had planned a complete shutdown of gas supplies in December, promising measures to cut prices and link welfare benefits to inflation.

“Russia is no longer a reliable energy partner,” Scholz said at a press conference in Berlin.

In response, former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev accused Germany of being an enemy of Russia. “In other words, Russia has declared a hybrid war,” he said.

On Sunday, Finland and Sweden announced plans to offer energy companies billions of dollars to stave off the threat of insolvency amid the crisis.

LOOK AT THE ZAPORIZHIA NUCLEAR PLANT.
Russian authorities said the situation around the Russian-occupied Zaporozhye nuclear power plant in southern Ukraine was calm on Sunday after UN inspectors said on Saturday that it had again lost off-site power.

The last remaining main external transmission line was cut off, although the backup line continued to supply electricity to the grid, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said in a statement.

According to him, only one of the six reactors remained in operation.

Russian troops seized the plant shortly after President Vladimir Putin moved his army across the border on February 24. It became the center of the conflict. Each side blamed the other for the shelling that raised fears of a nuclear holocaust.

In an interview with radio Komsomolskaya Pravda, Russian official Vladimir Rogov said that there had been no shelling or intrusions. According to Rogov, IAEA specialists are expected to continue working at the nuclear power plant until at least Monday.

Last week, an IAEA mission visited the plant, which still employs Ukrainian personnel, and some experts remained there pending the release of the IAEA report.

Russia is resisting international calls to demilitarize the area.

On other fronts, Ukrainian Telegram channels reported explosions on the Antonovsky Bridge near the southern city of Kherson, which is occupied by Russian troops.

The bridge has been severely damaged by Ukrainian missiles in recent weeks, but Russian troops have tried to repair it or install pontoon crossings or barges to supply Russian units on the right bank of the Dnieper.





Former Tata Sons chair Cyrus Mistry dies in road accident.
September 5, 2022

MUMBAI, Sept 4 - Cyrus Mistry, the 54-year-old former chairman of Indian conglomerate Tata Sons, died in a road accident near financial capital Mumbai on Sunday, Indian police said.

Mistry was ousted as chairman of Tata Sons, the holding company of the $300-billion salt-to-software Tata conglomerate, in a boardroom coup in 2016, sparking a long-drawn-out legal tussle on which India's top court eventually ruled in Tata Group's favour.

The accident took place in Palghar, located about 100 kilometres (62 miles) north of Mumbai, on Sunday afternoon. Mistry was travelling to Mumbai from Gujarat with three others, B. Patil, the top police official in Palghar district, said.

A senior Mumbai police official said the car in which Mistry was travelling had rammed into a divider, and that he had died at the accident site.

Several prominent politicians and industrialists tweeted their condolences after news of Mistry's passing was reported. Prime Minister Narendra Modi called Mistry's demise untimely and shocking.

"He was a promising business leader who believed in India's economic prowess. His passing away is a big loss to the world of commerce and industry," Modi tweeted.

Mistry's family and Tata Sons did not immediately respond to a request seeking comment.

Tata Consultancy Services, in which Tata Sons owns a majority stake, said it was mourning the untimely demise of its former chairman, adding that the company was offering its "deepest condolences and prayers" to his family and friends.

"He was a warm, friendly, and congenial person who built a strong relationship with the TCS family during his time as the chairman of the company," TCS said in a statement.

Mistry was the sixth chairman of the Tata group, a conglomerate started over 150 years ago, and the second not named Tata. He was the brother-in-law of Noel Tata, half-brother of Mistry's predecessor as chair Ratan Tata.

Mistry's grandfather first bought shares in Tata Sons in the 1930s. The Shapoorji Pallonji (SP) Group, founded by Mistry's father, currently holds a near 18% stake, making it the largest single shareholder in a firm mostly controlled by trusts.

The decades-long relationship between SP Group, one of the country's largest construction firms, and Tata Group was strained following his sacking, and SP Group has since been looking to "separate its interests" from Tata Sons.

Fund managers Reuters spoke to at the time of Mistry's appointment described him as little-known in business circles.

A graduate in civil engineering from London's Imperial College and in management from the London Business School, Mistry described himself as a voracious reader of business books and golfer, and shared his family's love of horses.

SP Group did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Mistry's death.





Bed Bath & Beyond CFO dies after falling from New York's Jenga tower.
September 5, 2022

Sept 4 (Reuters) - Bed Bath & Beyond Inc's (BBBYO) chief financial officer fell to his death from New York's Tribeca skyscraper known as the "Jenga" tower on Friday afternoon, police said on Sunday, days after the struggling retailer announced it was closing stores and laying off workers.

Gustavo Arnal, 52, joined Bed Bath & Beyond (BBBYO) in 2020. He previously worked as CFO for cosmetics brand Avon in London and had a 20-year stint with Procter & Gamble (PGN), according to his LinkedIn profile.

On Friday at 12:30 p.m. ET (1630 GMT), police responded to a 911 call and found a 52-year-old man dead near the building who suffered injuries from a fall. Police identified the man as Gustavo Arnal.

The police statement did not provide further details on the circumstances leading to Arnal's death and said the New York City Medical Examiner's Office would determine the cause of death. Bed Bath & Beyond confirmed his death in a press statement on Sunday but gave no details.

The big-box chain - once considered a so-called "category killer" in home and bath goods - has seen its fortunes falter after an attempt to sell more of its own brand, or private-label goods.

Last week, Bed Bath & Beyond said it would close 150 stores, cut jobs and overhaul its merchandising strategy in an attempt to turn around its money-losing business.

It forecast a bigger-than-expected 26% slump in same-store sales for the second quarter and said it would retain its buybuy Baby business, which it had put up for sale.

Arnal sold 55,013 shares in Bed Bath & Beyond in multiple transactions on Aug. 16-17, Reuters' calculations showed based on SEC filings. The sales amounted to about $1.4 million, and Arnal still had almost 255,400 shares remaining.

On Aug. 23, the company, Arnal and major shareholder Ryan Cohen were sued over accusations of artificially inflating the firm's stock price in a "pump and dump" scheme, with the lawsuit alleging Arnal sold off his shares at a higher price after the scheme.

The class action lawsuit listed Arnal as one of the defendants and was brought by a group of shareholders who claimed they lost around $1.2 billion.

The filing in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia alleged that Arnal "agreed to regulate all insider sales by BBBY's officers and directors to ensure that the market would not be inundated with a large number of BBBY shares at a given time."

The lawsuit also alleged that he issued materially misleading statements to investors.

The company said it was "in the early stages of evaluating the complaint, but based on current knowledge the company believes the claims are without merit."

Shares in Bed Bath & Beyond have been highly volatile in recent months, being viewed as a so-called "meme" stock, which trade more on social media sentiment than economic fundamentals.

Cohen, a billionaire investor, disclosed a stake of nearly 10% in early March. Cohen's RC Ventures disclosed plans to sell its stake on Aug. 17.





Kyiv Tech Summit organizers provided Unchain Fund donors with the opportunity to visit the hackathon.
September 4, 2022

The organizers of the Kyiv Tech Summit hackathon launched the Donate to Participate campaign. People who wish to join the forum but are not Web3 developers can attend the event by donating 150 USDT to the Unchain Fund.

The hackathon will be held from 6 to 9 September in Kyiv. Its participants will create a Web3 solution to deal with the consequences of Russia's military invasion of Ukraine.

The forum is hosted by the Unchain Fund, a decentralized autonomous organization UkraineDAO and the social metauniverse Atlantis World.

Sponsors and partners of the Kyiv Tech Summit will be NEAR, Aurora, Nym, Aragon, Consensys Academy, Amazon, Celo and a number of other companies and blockchain projects.

Non-developers in the community can donate 150 USDT to the Unchain Fund and receive an invitation to the event. To do this, you need to fill out a special form. As part of the promotion, only 90 tickets will be distributed.

According to the organizers, the funds received as part of the donations will help cover the costs associated with the hackathon. The rest of the money will be given to Ukrainian children affected by the war.

Vitalik Buterin, the founder of Ethereum, who previously sent donations to the Unchain Fund, has already paid attention to the hackathon.





Elon Musk's fraudulent deepfake posted on the South Korean government's YouTube channel.
September 4, 2022

On Saturday, September 3, unidentified individuals hacked into a YouTube channel owned by the South Korean government, renamed it SpaceX Invest, and uploaded fake videos of Elon Musk discussing cryptocurrencies. It is reported by Yonhap News Agency.

An official from the South Korean Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism told the agency that control of the canal was restored the same day. At the time of writing, it is not available. According to the official, the hackers managed to compromise the account credentials.

Google confirmed to Yonhap that the government channel was indeed hacked. The company added that they are investigating the incident.

On Sunday, the media also reported on the hacking of the Twitter account of the Venezuelan division of the consulting company PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). On the night of September 4, he began posting links to a site purportedly owned by Ripple.

The site promotes the “giveaway” of the XRP cryptocurrency. To get the asset, users are offered to follow a malicious link. At the time of writing, the phishing tweets remain on the PwC Venezuela page.

In May 2022, scammers circulated a deepfake Musk on Twitter, in which he “calls for investment” in an obvious scam.





Founder of crypto exchange Hodl Hodl to launch Debifi lending platform.
September 4, 2022

Founder and CEO of the Hodl Hodl exchange, Max Keidun, will launch the Debifi landing platform. He spoke about this at the Baltic Honeybadger conference, CoinDesk reports.

According to him, the platform will start working in the first quarter of 2023. At the first stage, Debifi will offer stablecoin loans to customers. Six months after the launch, fiat loans will become available. In both cases, cryptocurrencies will act as collateral.

Keidun noted that the company has already signed agreements with several liquidity providers. He stressed that in this capacity, only institutional entities with the necessary licenses, for example, banks, will be able to join the platform.

Debifi has also entered into contracts with the Bitfinex exchange and XBTO crypto finance company. The latter provides fiat loans secured by cryptocurrencies. Both firms are investors in Hodl Hodl.

The platform will not store customer funds in a centralized wallet. Instead, the collateral will be blocked using a multi-signature.

Kaidun's project was supported by Samson Moe's Casa, Blockstream and Jan3.

In 2020, Hodl Hodl launched Lend, a non-custodial p2p platform.

In 2022, a number of centralized crypto lending platforms ran into trouble amid the collapse of the Terra ecosystem and the crypto market crash that followed.

In August, cryptocurrency lending platform Hodlnaut suspended withdrawals, swaps, and token deposits due to a liquidity crunch.





Despite the postponement of the launch of the SLS rocket, the timing of the implementation of the NASA Artemis lunar program has not changed.
September 4, 2022

The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has not changed the timing of the Artemis program, which plans to land astronauts on the surface of the Moon, despite the difficulties with the first orbital flight of the Space Launch System launch vehicle. This is reported by the TASS news agency with reference to the words of the head of the aerospace department Bill Nelson.

“We still plan to launch Artemis 2 in 2024 and Artemis 3 in 2025,” said Bill Nelson, commenting on the question regarding the timing of the lunar program.

Recall that due to the identification of technical problems, NASA had to postpone the launch of the SLS rocket with the Orion spacecraft several times. The last attempt to launch was made on 3 September. It was planned that the super-heavy rocket would launch from the site of the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. However, during the refueling of the carrier tanks, a leak was discovered, which could not be eliminated. Because of this, the launch had to be postponed. The next attempt to launch an SLS rocket into outer space is scheduled for October.

Artemis 1 is the first stage of the American lunar program. To implement it, the SLS rocket must launch the Orion spacecraft into space, which will automatically go on a 42-day journey, during which it will fly around the moon and return to Earth. If successful, the next flight in a similar pattern will be carried out with the participation of the crew. At the final stage, as part of the Artemis 3 mission, a crew of astronauts should land on the surface of the satellite of our planet. In the coming days, an article describing this project in detail will appear on our website.





The Fed called the DeFi sector a potential threat to financial stability.
September 4, 2022

With the growing capitalization of the cryptocurrency market, the DeFi sector may create long-term risks to financial stability. This was stated by the experts of the FRS research group.

According to analysts, the threat is related to the lack of clear rules for regulating decentralized applications. In a published study, they noted that the sector has not yet become "systemically important", but government departments need to pay more attention to it.

“The rapid growth of the role of [programmable] blockchains suggests that policymakers should begin to seriously consider the full range of financial stability issues that could arise if such activities become systemically important,” the document says.

The Fed stressed that regulators do not have the necessary tools to enforce laws and regulations in DeFi. According to experts, sector players will "seize any and all profitable opportunities, regardless of the fears of the supervisory authorities."

The Fed also published a separate study on the impact of digital assets on financial stability. Analysts noted the need for stricter control over crypto companies that work with client funds.

“Surveillance, comprehensive disclosure, and capital and liquidity requirements where appropriate can increase the resilience of organizations in the digital asset ecosystem. For example, centralized entities that act as counterparties to retail users generally do not have capital, liquidity or comprehensive disclosure requirements,” the report says.

According to analysts, the cryptocurrency industry is “prone to accumulating financial vulnerabilities.” However, the Fed called the risks to economic stability "minor". The reason is the limited relationship of digital assets with the traditional market.

“If the digital financial system becomes more interconnected with the traditional one or expands the scope of financial services, these risks could quickly become significant,” they added.

In July 2022, Fed Vice Chair Lael Brainard called for tighter regulation of the cryptocurrency industry.





Aurora Labs paid white hat hackers $2 million for two bugs they found.
September 4, 2022

In June 2022, the Aurora Labs team received two bug reports with critical vulnerabilities identified. She paid the maximum rewards to the authors of the reports — $1 million each in Aurora (AURORA) tokens. This was reported on the team's blog.

The first vulnerability concerns the logic of the NEAR Rainbow Bridge cross-chain bridge for transferring assets between Ethereum and Aurora via NEAR. A hacker could trick the Aurora Engine into generating a fake token burn proof, provide it to the bridge, and steal the funds from the vault.

Aurora Labs has banned the Aurora Engine from outputting data that looks like burn proof. The team continues to work on a long-term and more robust proof of balance solution.

The second vulnerability is related to the transfer of tokens from Ethereum to Aurora. The attacker could send wrapped tokens to the recipient and charge the recipient up to 18.4 ETH.

As planned by the developers, this commission allowed to transfer tokens from Ethereum to Aurora via Rainbow Bridge without connecting the NEAR wallet. However, until the vulnerability was discovered, the fee was not available for use, since the bridge operations were subsidized by the Aurora validator on NEAR. Aurora Labs has banned setting the commission value above zero.

Aurora is an EVM blockchain based on the NEAR protocol. It is being developed by Aurora Labs, which includes the creators of NEAR itself. More than 185 projects migrated or announced the transition to Aurora: 1inch, SushiSwap, DAI, Brave and others.

In April 2022, Aurora Labs launched a bounty program to find vulnerabilities in the protocol, smart contracts, and application sites. The amount of rewards ranges from $1,000 to $1 million, depending on the level of threat.

On August 20, a hacker unsuccessfully attacked NEAR Rainbow Bridge and lost 5 ETH.





The launch of the NASA SLS lunar rocket did not take place again - now due to a fuel leak.
September 4, 2022

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) of the United States canceled the launch of the Space Launch System carrier rocket with the Orion spacecraft as part of the Artemis 1 lunar mission for the second time. Initially, the launch of the SLS rocket was supposed to take place on August 29, but it was canceled due to problems with one of the carrier's engines.

According to reports, the liquid hydrogen leak was discovered about seven hours before the launch of the rocket, which was supposed to take place at 4:17 local time. NASA engineers made several attempts to fix the leak. They tried to heat up the tank connector through which the fuel enters, in order to then cool it with liquid hydrogen. Later, they tried to pressurize the tank with helium, after which they returned to the heating and cooling method. Despite all the attempts made, it was not possible to solve the problem.

This is the second failed attempt to launch an SLS rocket this week. The next attempt could be made on Monday, September 5, if NASA engineers can fix the problem by then. NASA administrator Bill Nelson said that the launch of the rocket will take place only when everything is ready for this. He also noted that if the SLS rocket had to be rolled back to the assembly hangar for revision, then its launch would be postponed to October.

Obviously, in this case, the implementation of the Artemis 1 mission will begin after the next crew of Crew-5 astronauts leaves for the International Space Station on the SpaceX Crew Dragon ship, the launch of which is scheduled for early October. If NASA tries to launch the SLS rocket on Monday, the launch will take place during the two-hour window that opens on September 5 at 18:57 local time.





Global sales of electric vehicles in July increased by 61% and amounted to 778 thousand units.
September 3, 2022

In July 2022, 778,092 new electric vehicles were registered, up 61% from a year ago. Given the general decline in the automotive market, these figures look promising: electric vehicles now occupy 14% of the market, including 10% of “pure” electric vehicles. This was reported by the INSIDEEVs resource with reference to EV-Volumes data.

In July, about 556 thousand electric vehicles were registered in the world (an increase of 73% in annual terms, 10% of the market) and about 222 thousand hybrids (an increase of 36%, 4% of the market) - a total of 778,092 vehicles. This is 61% more than in July last year, and the total market share reached 14%. Since the beginning of the year, more than 4,928,376 million (12% of the market) plug-in electric vehicles have been registered (for the whole of 2021 there were 6.5 million of them): 3.66 million electric vehicles (8.9% of the market) and 1.27 million hybrids ( 3.1% of the market).

In July, the Chinese brand BYD performed more successfully than others, various models of which took half of the top ten best-selling in the world, and the most popular model from Elon Musk's Tesla Model Y was only the fourth - 29,829 copies were registered in a month, and the leader was BYD Song in "pure" and hybrid versions with 37,784 registrations. According to the results of the first seven months of 2022, the Tesla Model Y turned out to be the leader - 344,928 units were registered. The second place in both classifications was taken by the Wuling Hongguang Mini EV model, which is sold for only $5900.

Finally, the distribution by brand is curious. In July, more than 160,000 BYD plug-in models were registered - the Chinese manufacturer more than tripled Tesla with its 52,000 cars. Volkswagen came in third with 46,000 electric vehicles. According to the results of July, manufacturers were distributed as follows:

BYD - 160,061 units;
Tesla - 52,084 units;
Volkswagen - 46,400 units;
SAIC-GM-Wuling - 40,275 pcs.;
GAC - 25,094 pieces;
Geely - 24,599 units;
Chery - 24,498 units;
BMW - 24,175 units;
Dongfeng - 19,680 pieces;
Hyundai - 18,348 units





Regulator to review Amazon takeover of iRobot for antitrust violations.
September 3, 2022

The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has begun reviewing a deal in which Amazon took over robot vacuum maker iRobot for $1.7 billion. The regulator intends to make sure that the deal does not violate the country's antitrust laws.

An audit of the deal to buy iRobot was expected as the FTC is currently pursuing a wide-ranging investigation into Amazon's monopolization. According to available data, the department intends to check whether the said transaction will lead to an illegal increase in Amazon's share of the market for connected devices and the retail market as a whole. The FTC will also assess the expansion of Amazon's smart device lineup, which includes Ring security cameras and Alexa voice assistant, through the acquisition of iRobot.

One of the questions that the FTC will look at during the investigation is related to the possible advantages that Amazon could gain relative to other retailers by processing consumer home data collected by iRobot Roomba vacuum cleaners. For example, detailed maps of the homes of owners of robotic vacuum cleaners can be used to sell them furniture and other interior items selected according to the layout of the premises. Officials from the FTC, Amazon and iRobot refrain from commenting on the upcoming regulator investigation.





Today NASA will again try to launch the SLS rocket as part of the Artemis 1 lunar mission.
September 3, 2022

NASA today will make another attempt to launch the Orion spacecraft on the super-heavy Space Launch System (SLS) launch vehicle - the device must enter unmanned lunar orbit. The agency's assigned two-hour time window opens at 14:17 US East Coast time; The rocket will launch into space from Launch Pad 39B at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

The launch was originally scheduled for August 29, but had to be canceled because a liquid hydrogen leak was discovered during fueling of the first stage of the SLS. The Artemis 1 mission is a test one - it involves sending the Orion spacecraft into lunar orbit, where it will spend about a month. During this time, it will launch several satellites, each of which has its own task: from studying craters in the permanent shadow, in which the researchers believe there may be water, to measuring the background radiation and its potential impact on people who will go to the Moon in the coming missions of the Artemis program. Part of the research will also be carried out using the Orion spacecraft, which will also measure the background radiation and allow testing the heat shield - when returning to Earth, the speed of the device will be about 40,000 km / h, and the temperature will be about 5000 ° C.

The SLS launch vehicle developed by Boeing Corporation is today the most powerful in the world - its basic version allows you to send up to 95 tons of payload into orbit, and in the future this figure can be increased to 130 tons.

If the weather forecast is favorable, the refueling of the SLS with ultra-cold fuel in the amount of 2.8 million liters will begin at approximately 5:45 local time. According to NASA experts, favorable weather conditions will be established today with a probability of 60%. If today's launch does not take place, the agency may make two more attempts, on September 5 and 6 - otherwise it will have to return the rocket to the hangar to re-check the protective equipment and recharge the batteries on the satellites. NASA is going to stream the SLS launch live on YouTube.





Samsung has been hacked: the personal data of users of its products are stolen.
September 3, 2022

Samsung admitted that in July its servers were hacked, and hackers stole users' personal data. The South Korean tech giant issued a brief statement announcing the incident, noting "illegal access to user data on some US Samsung servers by an unauthorized third party."

The fact that the data of some users of the company were compromised, Samsung learned on August 4th. At the same time, the company notes that information about users' credit card numbers did not fall into the hands of hackers. We are talking only about some personal data - name, date of birth, demographic data, contact information, as well as registration data for Samsung products.

“The amount of information affected for each individual user may vary. We are now notifying them of what happened,” the company said in a statement.

A Samsung representative in a conversation with TechCrunch explained that the company understands demographic data as information that is used for marketing purposes. However, he did not explain exactly what types of data are included. He added that user registration data provided by Samsung customers to access technical support and warranty services includes information about the date of purchase of a particular product, device model, as well as its ID number. At the same time, he declined to talk about how many Samsung users could end up affected by a hacker attack on the company's servers, and also did not comment on why the manufacturer did not inform its consumers about it for so long.

This is the second hack of Samsung's servers this year. In March, the South Korean giant was attacked by the Lapsus$ hacker group. These hackers also attacked NVIDIA, Microsoft and T-Mobile. In total, the attackers stole almost 200 GB of confidential information from the South Korean electronics manufacturer, including data on new technologies and algorithms for biometric control systems.





Gadget advertising identifiers adapted for surveillance - American law enforcement officers are already in business.
September 3, 2022

US police and other law enforcement agencies have found an inexpensive tool to track mobile devices even in communities with a population of less than 100,000 people, according to the Associated Press (AP) and the human rights organization Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). We are talking about a system called Fog Reveal.

US authorities have been using the Fog Reveal system since at least 2018, using the resource to investigate predominantly serious crimes such as murders and riots in the Capitol. The system was developed by Fog Data Science in Virginia, USA - according to local laws, its use is allowed without a warrant, and the results come instantly. Typically, a warrant and contact with Apple or Google is required to locate a mobile device, and in some cases it takes weeks to get a response.

To track the geolocation of gadgets, Fog Reveal uses advertising identification numbers that are unique to each mobile device. Data enters the system from aggregators that receive it from applications that provide targeted advertising, such as Waze and Starbucks customers. At the same time, the coffee chain and the Google-owned service predictably deny that they gave their partners explicit consent to share data with Fog Reveal.

Information about the service was received by EFF employees, who subsequently handed over the materials to AP. Human rights activists describe the tool as “a kind of budget-friendly mass surveillance program” – the license costs from $7,500 a year, and some departments buy one for several departments to save money. AP reporters found that Fog sold about forty licenses to two dozen government agencies, whose employees, in turn, made several hundred search queries in a database of 250 million devices.

The data in the service database is anonymized, but the investigating authorities always have the opportunity to analyze the information and recreate the “life model” of a person. The creator of the service provides an archive of geolocation for each object for the last 180 days, although Fog's managing partner Matthew Broderick admitted that a retrospective "for three years ago" is technically available.

Fog Reveal has been used by US authorities with varying degrees of success over the past years. Washington County (Arkansas) Attorney Kevin Metcalf admitted that he used the system in circumstances where, in the absence of a warrant, it was necessary to act quickly, such as investigating murders or searching for missing children. “I think people will have to decide if we want all this free technology, if we want all this freebies, if we want all these selfies. But we cannot use them and at the same time say: “I am a private person, and you cannot watch all this,” Mr. Metcalf concluded.





Subsea Cloud to build first commercial underwater data center off US coast.
September 3, 2022

Subsea Cloud intends to offer commercial users the capacity of its first underwater data center, Jules Verne, which is planned to be built off the coast of the United States. According to The Register, a 1MW data center is expected to be 90% more profitable than comparable ground structures. Commissioning of Jules Verne is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2022. Construction of other facilities is also planned - in the Gulf of Mexico (Njord01) and the North Sea (Manannán). And by 2026, the company intends to completely switch to the use of renewable energy.

The main advantage of the new data center will be its location near the urban agglomerations off the coast of Port Angeles, Washington, which will reduce the level of latency and at the same time save money, since land in the cities is expensive. The object was named Jules Verne in honor of the famous classic science fiction writer Jules Verne. The data center will be open for review to all potential customers, but there will hardly be many of them, since it is being created mainly for demonstration purposes.

The data center will be cooled by ambient water, which will reduce energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions by 40% compared to land-based sites. The servers will be placed in a dielectric coolant, and the entire system will focus on passive heat dissipation without the use of pumps. The Jules Verne capsule will fit in the dimensions of a standard 20-foot container and will be located in shallow water. Capsules in the Gulf of Mexico and the North Sea are intended to be located at depths of up to 300 m, but Subsea Cloud initially designed unattended systems capable of operating at depths of up to 3000 m.

Inside each capsule there will be 16 racks that can accommodate up to 800 servers. The total power is up to 1 MW. The speed of communication with land is 100 Gbps. Such an underwater campus is scaled by adding additional capsules, up to 100 pcs. If a breakdown occurs or a customer wants to replace their equipment, it will take a maintenance team 4-16 hours to get to the site and carry out the replacement. The operator is currently negotiating cooperation with two unnamed hyperscalers, although specific agreements have not yet been reached.

Subsea Cloud itself, despite its name, only provides collocation services and is responsible for servicing the capsules. In addition, it sells and licenses its solutions. It is curious that, apparently, the company already has at least one customer who chose the second path, taking care of self-service capsules. It now takes 10 weeks to build and test one capsule, and another two weeks to install and commission it.

The effectiveness of underwater data centers has already been proven by Microsoft, which has built several relevant facilities as part of the Project Natick experiment. Unlike the Subsea capsules, the Microsoft facilities are filled with nitrogen. According to the tech giant, only a few servers failed during the experiment. There is also a similar Chinese project Highlander. Immersion cooling is expected to avoid contamination by dust and other fragments.





Google removes Chrome extensions that spoof user cookies.
September 3, 2022

Google has removed several malicious plugins from the Chrome Web Store, with over 1.4 million installs in total. They not only tracked users, but also allowed attackers to earn on referral links.

The malicious extensions were identified by McAfee. The plugins performed all sorts of functions, from streaming Netflix videos to multiple users at the same time, to the ability to take screenshots or automatically search for and apply coupons when making purchases. Meanwhile, they also recorded visits to all sites and performed additional actions when visiting marketplaces.

A study by McAfee experts showed that extensions sent site addresses to the server of attackers, along with the user's browser unique identifier, information about its geolocation. If the site being visited was related to e-commerce, the server sent instructions to allow JavaScript code to be integrated into the pages being viewed. As a result, the code modified cookies, and extension developers received their own percentage from each purchase through affiliate programs operating on many marketplaces.

In order to hide activity, some of the extensions were programmed to "sleep" for 15 days after installation so as not to draw too much attention.

Netflix Party
Netflix Party2
FlipShope - Price Tracker Extension
Full Page Screenshot Capture - Screenshotting
AutoBuy Flash Sales

The names of malicious extensions are given above. All of them have already been removed from the Chrome Web Store. If you have any of the add-ons mentioned above installed, it is recommended to remove them yourself - you can do this in your browser settings.





Google has added third-party payment methods to the Play Store for a number of countries.
September 3, 2022

Google quietly expanded its User Choice Billing pilot to allow non-gaming app developers to use alternative payment systems as an alternative to the Google Play service in a number of new countries. At the same time, the commission, which in the basic version ranges from 15% to 30%, is reduced by 4%.

The new billing rules are effective September 1, with a choice of alternative payment methods available to developers in the European Economic Area, India, Japan, Indonesia, and Australia, according to the Google support page. The company claims that 99% of developers can claim a 15% commission, with 30% payout players such as Spotify making the most of their revenue, understandably the most dissatisfied.

It was the music streaming service Spotify that became Google's first partner in the User Choice Billing pilot project, which was launched in March. Previously, Google was forced to offer alternative payment methods for developers from South Korea - a corresponding law was passed there a year ago. The emergence of such a project can be considered a response not only to legislative initiatives, but also to the criticism that Apple and Google are subjected to for what is sometimes regarded as a monopolization of the mobile software market: until recently, there was no possibility of using alternative payment systems at all, and the commission for transactions still seem too high.

So far, nothing has been said about Google's intentions to expand the project to the United States - the company wants to collect feedback on its work. Recently, alternative payment methods have been added for Russian developers.





A year ago, Amazon had to turn off all the solar power plants on the roofs of warehouses due to a series of fires.
September 2, 2022

Last year, Amazon was forced to turn off solar power generation systems at all of its US facilities - a large number of them, for various reasons, had fires that jeopardized the e-commerce giant's environmental program.

One of these incidents occurred on April 14, 2020 - a fire was recorded on the roof of a FAT1 warehouse in Fresno, California. Then about 220 solar panels and other electrical equipment were damaged, but firefighters who arrived at the scene were able to cope with the fire. About a year later, a similar incident was recorded at an Amazon facility in Perryville, Maryland. Between these two events, four more fires were recorded in the warehouses of the company, according to internal documents of Amazon, which journalists were able to see CNBC. In other words, from April 2020 to June 2021. 6 of the company's 47 solar-equipped sites in North America experienced major outages—that is, 12.7% of its order processing centers.

It would be a mistake to think that only Amazon is experiencing such problems: in one form or another, they have affected all companies trying to implement environmental programs, reducing their environmental impact and reducing dependence on fossil fuels. Although Amazon may have been the most active along the way. In 2019, its founder, Jeff Bezos, promised to take the company to zero emissions by 2040, including by introducing renewable energy sources and abandoning combustion vans.

Last June, Amazon had to turn off solar power generation at all facilities in the US - the company's management decided to make sure that all systems are designed, deployed and maintained properly in order to re-commission them. Company spokeswoman Erika Howard clarified to CNBC that technical failures occurred on systems managed by its partners, and Amazon made the decision to disable them on its own initiative. However, all this information was not in the company's official environmental reports - it said that in mid-2021, 90 order processing centers were provided with energy from solar panels, by the end of the year there were 115, and in April 2022 - already 176. energy was launched in 2017.

From the published reports, the company also excluded information about the costs incurred in such incidents. But one Amazon employee calculated that the average cost is $2.7 million per major outage, including the costs of technical inspections and the repair or replacement of faulty equipment. On the other hand, downtime of solar panels is also expensive - $20,000 for each of the 47 American facilities per month, or $940,000 for all combined.

Technical inspections for Amazon are carried out by its partner, Clean Energy Associates (CEA). She is entrusted with the inspection of objects not only in the United States, but also in other regions of the presence of the retailer: in Europe, the Asia-Pacific region, the Middle East and Africa. Moreover, CEA worked not only with Amazon facilities, but also with the centers of its Whole Foods network. As of the end of 2021, four years after the takeover of the supermarket chain, the new owner still did not have a technical report on the state of renewable energy systems at Whole Foods facilities. However, the report submitted to the CEA at the end of 2021 contained 259 standard comments and one critical note. The concerns included mismatched connectors between modules, misplaced connectors, wiring maintenance errors, and signs of water intrusion into solar-to-electricity inverters. By the way, a fire inspector in Fresno concluded that the fire at the FAT1 facility “originated at or near two inverters.”

It seems that the end of 2021 was a turning point in this story - then Amazon divisions asked the company's management for funding in the amount of $3.6 million to conduct repeated technical inspections that would establish that solar energy systems can be put back into operation. Employees have also called on management to reduce Amazon's reliance on outside suppliers and replace them with in-house workers. Over time, the company has indeed begun to hire more solar specialists for offices around the world.

However, in some cases, the leadership reacted unacceptably slowly. A number of departments have asked "upstairs" for approval of plans to hire, re-inspect and restart solar systems, and in response, Kara Hurst, Amazon's VP of Environmental Affairs, and Alicia Boler-Davis, Senior Vice President of Customer Services, have suspended all work in this direction for several months. In June 2022, Hirst and Boler-Davies left the company.

At the official level, Amazon, of course, denies that members of the management are delaying work at the request of employees - solar energy specialists are still on the company's job listings. Now Amazon management understands that the change of environmental strategy at the colossal scale of operations is inevitably fraught with obstacles. “But we at Amazon don’t shy away from big challenges. We don’t have all the answers today, but we believe in the need to act now,” wrote Cara Hirst in a cover letter to the 2021 Environmental Report.





Banning NVIDIA AI Accelerator Shipments to China Won't Hurt Electric Vehicle Manufacturers.
September 2, 2022

The ban on the sale of NVIDIA chips to China will not affect Chinese electric vehicle manufacturers that actively use the company's solutions for autonomous driving systems, since the restrictions only affect high-performance computing accelerators.

Many Chinese electric vehicle manufacturers are using NVIDIA Drive Orin and Xavier processors as the basis for driver assistance systems. These semi-autonomous driving systems are one of the key technologies that enable automakers to do business in a very competitive market in China. Therefore, the introduction by the US authorities of restrictions on the supply of certain products to China caused some concern among Chinese companies.

However, there is no reason for it - the new restrictions of the US authorities are aimed at banning the supply of AI computing accelerators A100 and H100, which belong to a different line of activity for NVIDIA. “There should be no restrictions related to [NVIDIA] Xavier and Orin. Thus, Xpeng, Nio and others will be able to continue to purchase these chips,” Bevin Jacob of Shanghai-based investment advisory company Automobility told CNBC.

However, in his opinion, the US authorities in the future may still pay close attention to American chips related to the work of artificial intelligence in autonomous driving systems. Therefore, there is still a certain risk in the cooperation of Chinese automakers with NVIDIA. Xpeng declined to comment. Nio, Li Auto, Huawei, and Jidu (the new car brand of Baidu and Geely) did not respond to inquiries from reporters.

In its latest financial report, NVIDIA noted that its automotive revenue for the second quarter was $220 million, up 45% from a year earlier.

NVIDIA shares fell about 13% after reports of restrictions on the export of certain types of its products - A100 and H100 accelerators - to China and Russia. The manufacturer risks losing about $400 million in revenue in the current quarter.





WhatsApp suspended 2.4 million accounts in India, 1.4 million of them proactively, without waiting for complaints.
September 2, 2022

The WhatsApp communications service has released a report showing that 2.39 million accounts were suspended in India in July. The data is made public in accordance with India's strict IT laws, which require digital platforms to publish such data every month.

The important thing is that of all the blocked accounts, 1.42 million were sent into oblivion proactively - before users complain. WhatsApp says that in addition to handling complaints, it is taking its own steps to identify "malicious behavior" on the platform - the company is focused on preventing incidents before things get out of control.

“First of all, we believe that it is much better to prevent malicious activity before the event itself than to detect it after the harm has already been done,” the messenger team says. How the potential maliciousness of messages protected by end-to-end encryption is detected is not specified.

In addition to proactive blocking, WhatsApp traditionally allows you to complain about users. In this case, the moderators get the contents of the last few messages sent by the offender to the user or group, as well as some information about the recent contacts of the complainers and the user against whom the accusation has been made.

Users and security experts often criticize the WhatsApp messenger, calling it a vehicle for spreading fake news and misinformation. However, this is not surprising - today it is the most popular messenger on the planet, used by more than 2 billion people, so the number of attackers on the platform can be expected to be quite high.





Indian Court Orders Telegram to Disclose Information About Infringing Channels.
September 2, 2022

An Indian court ordered the Telegram administration to disclose details about the owners of the channels involved in the copyright infringement case. Before that, representatives of the messenger said that this would violate the privacy policy of the service regarding users.

Telegram's privacy policy has previously caused claims from the authorities of various countries: not so long ago, a Brazilian court was going to block the messenger in the country if it did not take measures to combat "disinformation" - then the administration of the service nevertheless complied with its requirements. In India, a precedent may have been set in which the court required the platform to disclose the data of users directly related to copyright infringement.

The Delhi High Court ordered the Telegram administration to provide mobile phone numbers, IP addresses and email IDs belonging to individuals who uploaded infringing content to the platform. The company that owns the platform said that disclosing this information would violate not only the privacy policy of the messenger, but also the laws of Singapore, where the servers that store user information are physically located. In response, the court said it could not leave copyright holders "completely defenseless against real infringers" just because Telegram decided to locate its servers in Singapore. The administration of the platform has not yet made response statements.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Neetu Singh - she indicated a list of channels through which her lectures and books on exam preparation were distributed, and the materials were offered at a reduced price. The court ordered to inform the Telegram administration within a week of the requirement to disclose information about copyright infringers, and the information itself must be provided within two weeks from the date of the decision.

India is considered the largest market for Telegram, with 700 million users of the platform. The growth in popularity of the messenger was facilitated by the statements of its administration that the privacy of users is a priority issue, as well as the policy of WhatsApp updated in 2021. However, Meta*'s instant messaging service still holds the lead in South Asia.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





Google Chrome browser found a bug that allows malicious sites to control the clipboard.
September 2, 2022

Google Chrome version 104 introduced a bug that could compromise user privacy by writing to the clipboard normally at the user's explicit command, but cybersecurity expert Jeff Johnson found that this safeguard was actually not enforced.

Working on computers, people use the clipboard dozens and even hundreds of times a day to transfer information from one program to another, and often this information is confidential: phone numbers, addresses, passwords for entering various systems and payment data. By exploiting the error, attackers can create fake cryptocurrency service sites and manipulate wallet addresses, the expert suggested.

Mr. Johnson also noted that Safari and Firefox also allow writing to the clipboard, but they have additional protection, which, however, is not always effective: the expert argues that all web browsers in active use today lack adequate protection measures. The common keyboard shortcut for writing data to the clipboard is "CTRL+C" (or "CMD+C" on macOS), but in practice this system resource can be accessed in other ways that are completely non-obvious to the user, such as pressing the arrow key to scroll the page.

You can check if the browser is susceptible to this error by visiting the site at webplatform.news and trying to paste data from the clipboard into any other program: if the browser is vulnerable, a warning text will be inserted. Google Chrome developers are already aware of the problem, but they have not yet provided a solution.





Elon Musk ready to push for Twitter hearing to be postponed until early December.
September 2, 2022

It recently became known that the legal representatives of Elon Musk's interests in a dispute with Twitter management over a collapsing deal changed their defense tactics. Instead of disagreements about the share of bots among the audience, the general problems with the security of the social network, which became known with the filing of the whistleblower, are now taken as the basis. The billionaire is now inclined to seek a postponement of the hearing from mid-October to early December.

Elon Musk's intentions were announced on the last day of summer. As you know, now the court session is scheduled for October 17, and five working days are mentioned as the maximum duration of the hearing. This week, Musk's lawyers have already asked the court to postpone the start of the hearing to November, but these dates can be revised. Recall that Musk originally asked to schedule a court hearing for February, so shifting the deadline to December would bring it closer to the original date.

The revelations of the former head of the Twitter information security division Peiter Zatko are intended to be used by Musk's side as additional arguments proving the legitimacy of the billionaire's decision to refuse to purchase social network assets on the terms agreed in April. The company's management, according to Musk's lawyers, did not provide him with information about Zatko's concern about the state of affairs with information security at the time of preparation of the initial agreement between the parties, thereby hiding significant circumstances that could affect the outcome of the transaction. Twitter management continues to insist that Musk's side of the argument for pulling out of the deal is "incorrect and inappropriate."





Apple, Google and others are gradually shifting production from China to neighboring countries.
September 2, 2022

Less and less time remains before the presentation of new smartphones by Apple and Google. One of the major changes that will go unnoticed by many consumers is that not all of these devices will be made in China. The fact is that Apple, Google and other companies are gradually transferring production facilities from China to neighboring countries.

According to the source, a small part of the new iPhones will be produced in India, and some of the new Pixel smartphones in Vietnam. The trend to move manufacturing capacity out of China is a result of geopolitical tensions and disruptions in supply chains that periodically arise due to the coronavirus pandemic.

China has long been the largest manufacturer of high-tech electronics. However, American companies see certain risks due to the growing tensions between the US and China in recent years. The trade war, which was launched during the period when Donald Trump was the President of the United States, and the aggravation of the situation around Taiwan, may draw IT giants into this conflict.

Because of this, large companies are gradually transferring part of their production capacities from China to neighboring countries. And this applies not only to smartphones, but also to other devices of different categories. For example, Apple makes part of the iPad and Microsoft makes part of the Xbox consoles in Vietnam; Amazon makes some of the Fire TV devices in India. A few years ago, all these products were made in China.

This week it became known that manufacturing activity at Chinese factories has been declining for the second month in a row. “China's manufacturing empire is shattered. More and more companies will withdraw production from China and look for an alternative, ”says Lior Susan, founder of the investment company Eclipse Venture Capital.

Supply chain problems have affected many Asian countries. In Vietnam, this has fueled a sharp rise in the value of industrial land, in Malaysia it has boosted production, and in India it has boosted the demand for low-wage workers. According to some experts, many companies are thinking about moving production from China, even if they have not yet taken any action in this direction.

When the first coronavirus outbreak shut down factories in China in early 2020, many companies' sales plans were disrupted, including Apple, which had to cut its quarterly sales forecast. As a result, the IT giant began to look for alternative production facilities in order to avoid similar situations in the future.

Vietnam, where Apple has been producing AirPods since 2020, has become one of the countries that the company is considering as an alternative to China. Apple has since launched production of smartwatches and iPads in Vietnam. Apple's top 200 suppliers have manufacturing facilities in Vietnam, while only 155 suppliers use factories in China, the source said.

It is noted that this year Apple will begin to release part of the latest iPhone 14 in India for the first time. Although the bulk of the company's new smartphones will continue to be made in China, the tech giant will move some production capacity to assess future prospects.

Foxconn, the largest contract manufacturer of Apple devices, recently signed an agreement to expand its manufacturing capacity in Vietnam with the construction of a $300 million plant that will also create about 30,000 jobs, according to the source. According to some reports, Foxconn previously invested $1.5 billion to develop its business in Vietnam.

Against the backdrop of the current situation, Google was also forced to look for alternatives to China. According to reports, the company will move part of the production of new Pixel smartphones to Vietnam this year. It is noted that next year up to half of Pixel smartphones will be produced in Vietnam.

Over the past two decades, the technology industry has developed an extensive network of suppliers who supply various components and equipment for the production of end products. The concentration of suppliers close to production reduces shipping costs, simplifies logistics and facilitates maintenance. This means that it will not be easy for IT giants to completely abandon Chinese manufacturing facilities.





Micron invests $15 billion to build US semiconductor factory.
September 2, 2022

Micron Technology will invest about $15 billion over the next 10 years in a new memory chip facility in Boise, Idaho. The investment includes federal grants and loans under the Chip Act (CHIPS) and the Science Act and will create about 17,000 jobs.

Last month, President Joe Biden signed a bill to provide $52.7 billion in subsidies for semiconductor manufacturing and research and to step up efforts to improve US competitiveness.

"Today's announcement by Micron is another big win for America," Biden said in a statement. “We will make electric vehicles, chips, fiber optics and other critical components here in America, and we will have a self-sustaining broad-based economy.”

Micron did not provide details about the new facility's capacity or what kind of chips it would produce.

The expansion comes as Micron cut its fourth-quarter earnings forecast due to weak demand. A similar situation is with Seagate, which also predicts a decline in its revenues in the first quarter of next year.

“Micron is playing within the rules that the government requires of it, which is building its manufacturing facilities in the US,” said Kinngai Chan, an analyst at Summit Insights Group.

Overall, Micron plans to invest $40 billion in phases by the end of this decade to build manufacturing facilities in the United States.





US authorities allow NVIDIA to continue development of H100 accelerators in China.
September 2, 2022

NVIDIA announced on Thursday that the US government has given it permission to continue developing the H100 series server accelerators in China, CNBC reports. Earlier it was reported that the US authorities imposed restrictions on the supply of advanced computing accelerators from AMD and NVIDIA to China and Russia. Against the backdrop of this decision, the same NVIDIA risks losing $ 400 million in revenue in the current quarter.

"The US government has authorized the export, re-export, and domestic shipments required by NVIDIA Corporation to continue development of the H100 accelerators [in China]," NVIDIA said.

The H100 Server Accelerator is NVIDIA's new Hopper architecture product, expected to ship by the end of this year. Its development and production takes place partly in China, so the restrictions introduced the day before could call into question their timely release. Now this problem has been solved - NVIDIA has received the right to move accelerators for its needs across the Chinese border until at least September 2023.

The administration of US President Joe Biden is trying to restrict the export of certain types of high-tech products and equipment to China because they believe they can be used for military purposes. For example, NVIDIA and AMD graphics processors can be used in supercomputers to develop new types of weapons, personal identification systems, and other tasks.

NVIDIA's server segment is one of the fastest growing. The company recently reported that for the past quarter its revenue in this area was $3.8 billion, which is 61% higher than in the same period last year.

Some analysts believe that NVIDIA, in cooperation with the US government, could achieve an easing of restrictions on the export of its products to China, writes CNBC. However, at the moment there is a danger that the Chinese government may take any retaliatory measures against the United States.

After the news about the restriction on the supply of advanced computing accelerators NVIDIA and AMD to China and Russia, the shares of the former fell by more than 11%, and the latter by more than 7%.





Roche Freedman founder drops out of lawsuits against Tether and Tron.
September 1, 2022

Roche Freedman law firm founding partner Kyle Roche has filed a waiver of class action lawsuits against Bitfinex, Tether, Tron Foundation and HDR Global Trading. Earlier, the lawyer was accused of participating in contract cases.

In late August, a series of videos appeared on CryptoLeaks in which Roche says he used "the lawsuit as a tool to disrupt [Ava Labs'] competitors and a way to bring them to the attention of regulators."

On the tapes, the lawyer also admitted to using litigation as a “strategic support tool” for the company behind the Avalanche blockchain.

Ava Labs founder Emin Gün Sirer denied CryptoLeaks allegations. The lawyer himself called the published recordings "illegally obtained, heavily edited video clips that are not presented with the exact context."

"The videos are taken out of context and edited in a covert filming process by Norwegian investor Kristen Ager-Hansen, who works for Dfinity founder Dominic Williams," Roche wrote.

Williams is the subject of a securities fraud and insider trading lawsuit initiated by Roche Freedman, he said, and Kristen Ager-Hansen set up a meeting to discredit him.

The lawyer also added that his company has been cooperating with Ava Labs since 2019. He denied the fact of collusion with Gun Sirer.

Roche Freedman still has several open lawsuits against other players in the cryptocurrency market. In particular, Nexo, Solana Labs, Dfinity, BAM Trading and Celsius Network.

CryptoLeaks has been accused of ties to Roche Freedman and Ripple. Its head, Brad Garlinghouse, stated that he "never met or spoke" with Roche.





The media learned about LG's plans to release a crypto wallet based on Hedera Hashgraph.
September 1, 2022

South Korean tech giant LG Electronics is preparing to launch a Wallypto cryptocurrency wallet based on the Hedera Hashgraph network in the third quarter of 2022. It is reported by News1.

In August, the corporation began beta testing of the application as the last stage of verification.

According to the publication, LG has registered the name and logo of the wallet as trademarks in Korea and abroad.

Initially, Wallypto supports Hedera-based HTS and NFT tokens. It is expected that after the official release, developers will expand the list of integrated networks and assets.

The journalists recalled that in March the company included “the development and sale of blockchain-based software” in the founding documents.

In their opinion, the new direction can create a synergy effect with such core activities of the company as household appliances and electronics. Presumably, the wallet will be able to interact with IoT devices built on the LG ThinQ platform.

“From the point of view of an electronics manufacturer, they are more than anyone interested in the payment system, because they can control it and receive high-quality data,” commented Kim Seung-joo, professor at the Graduate School of Information Security at Korea University.

Such information is extremely useful for developing new business models and services, he stressed.

In 2019, LG Electronics filed a patent application for a crypto wallet and announced the production of blockchain smartphones. The company exited the mobile device market in 2021.

In January 2022, LG, following Samsung, introduced a line of smart TV models with NFT support. The corporation has also partnered with a division of the auction house Seoul Auction to implement projects in the field of digital collectible assets.





Indonesia launches state-owned bitcoin exchange.
September 1, 2022

The Indonesian authorities will establish a platform for trading cryptocurrencies before the end of the year. According to Deputy Commerce Minister Jerry Sambuaga, the initiative is aimed at protecting investors in the face of growing interest in digital assets, writes DealStreetAsia.

Initially, the crypto exchange was going to be launched in 2021, but the project was postponed.

Sambuag explained the decision by scrupulousness in the preparation of all processes - the selection and verification of participants for compliance with the requirements.

According to local regulator BAPPEBTI, by June, the number of cryptocurrency users in the country reached 15.1 million people. The turnover of digital assets for 2021 amounted to 859.4 trillion rupees ($57.6 billion).

CEO of Tokocrypto (one of the 25 regulated platforms in the country) Pang Hue Kai called the project a catalyst for the Indonesian crypto ecosystem. He expects the growth of investors, including among the institutional ones.

Previously, Jump Capital specialists included Indonesia among the most promising countries for cryptocurrencies.

From May 1, the country will levy VAT on transactions with crypto assets and income tax on capital gains from such investments at rates of 0.1% in both cases.

The legislation equates digital currencies to exchange goods, but prohibits their use as a means of payment.





World's largest 1.3 GW offshore wind farm launched.
September 1, 2022

Located in the North Sea, the world's largest offshore wind farm, Hornsea 2, is fully operational. It will provide electricity to more than 1.4 million households in the UK. This was stated in a press release from Orsted, which was involved in the implementation of the project.

The Hornsea 2 power plant is located 89 km off the Yorkshire coast and is designed to generate clean energy. On an area of ​​462 km² (equivalent to the area of ​​64,000 football fields), there are 165 wind turbines manufactured by Siemens Gamesa. In total, the station can generate up to 1.3 gigawatts of energy.

To implement the Hornsea 2 project, massive turbines with a capacity of 8 megawatts each were used. The blade of such a turbine has a length of 81 meters, and the tip of the blade at the top reaches a height of 200 meters above sea level. One turn of the turbine is enough to power a British household with energy for 24 hours, while in total the station is able to provide energy to more than 1.4 million households. The energy collected by the station will be transmitted via a 390 km submarine cable to Lincolnshire, where it will be stored and distributed.

“Current global events highlight more than ever the importance of iconic renewable energy projects such as Hornsea 2, which are helping the UK improve the reliability and sustainability of its energy supply and lower consumer costs by reducing reliance on expensive fossil fuels.” commented on this issue, the head of the British division of Orsted Duncan Clark.





The second tour to the ISS NASA and Axiom Space will carry out in 2023.
September 1, 2022

The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and private aerospace company Axiom Space have signed an agreement under which a private mission will be delivered to the International Space Station next year. A message about this appeared on the official page of NASA.

"NASA and Axiom Space have signed a contract to conduct a second private astronaut mission to the International Space Station, due in the second quarter of 2023," the aerospace department said in a statement.

The upcoming mission is called Axiom Mission 2 (Ax-2). Four astronauts will fly to the ISS on SpaceX's Crew Dragon spacecraft, which will be launched into outer space using a Falcon 9 launch vehicle. The launch is scheduled to take place from the Kennedy Space Center site in Florida. The crew will spend 10 days aboard the ISS, after which they will return to Earth on the Crew Dragon spacecraft.

Axiom Space, which is the mission operator, must submit four candidates for the main crew, as well as their backups, to NASA. After that, the candidacies of all crew members must be approved by the commission, which will include representatives of the countries participating in the ISS project. When the crew is approved, its members will begin preparations for the flight in order to go on a trip to the orbital station next year.





The European Commission is going to fight for the availability of spare parts for smartphones and more reliable batteries.
September 1, 2022

Smartphone manufacturers supplying their models to the European Union may soon face new rules. According to a draft law proposed yesterday by the European Commission, for smartphones entering the market, vendors will be required to ensure the availability of 15 critical components for five years. In addition, the battery must be able to survive at least 500 charge cycles while maintaining at least 83% capacity.

Smartphones will receive an efficiency label similar to that already applied to washing machines and dishwashers, according to The Financial Times. In addition, the "resistance" of the batteries and other characteristics, including resistance to drops, will be indicated. Recall that in June the European Commission has already adopted a law according to which by 2024 a single standard for chargers should appear.

According to a study by the European Environment Bureau, extending the life cycle of smartphones sold in the EU to five years would significantly reduce carbon dioxide emissions into the atmosphere. The draft of the new law concerns not only smartphones, but also tablets and push-button mobile phones. According to the publication, citing one of the high-ranking officials from Brussels, products that do not meet the requirements for environmental sustainability will "leave the market." In response, smartphone makers argue that making more spare parts available will increase plastic consumption. In particular, the industry association Digital Europe argues that such an overproduction of components will lead to resource overruns, reduced material efficiency and increased cost of goods for consumers.

Some manufacturers, including Apple, have already been forced to expand repair programs under pressure from activists and authorities around the world. In April, the Apple company for the first time released the first DIY iPhone repair schemes, rented or sold smartphone repair tools, and supplied parts to customers in the United States, and promises to expand the corresponding program to the European Union in the coming months.

In addition to hardware, the new offerings also apply to software - security updates will be released within five years after the release of the model on the market, and updates related to the modernization of functionality - within three years. In particular, this may affect most manufacturers of Android smartphones, which usually provide OS updates only in the first years after the release.

In addition, enthusiasts say that improving maintainability and extending battery life will make it easier for customers to compare devices and mark the end of the "era of disposable gadgets."

Brussels has previously said that energy labels on light bulbs have motivated manufacturers to produce much more efficient products, and a survey conducted among EU residents showed that 79% of respondents considered labeling data when making a purchase decision.





Twitter began testing the function of editing messages - so far it is only available for money.
September 1, 2022

Microblogging service Twitter will start testing the long-awaited post editing feature this month. Only users with a paid Twitter Blue subscription will be able to participate in the program, and the edit history will be available for edited tweets, according to the company's blog.

Posts can only be edited within the first 30 minutes of being posted, and will be marked with a special icon and timestamp to indicate that the post has been edited. At the initial stages, the service plans to involve a small group of subscribers in testing the function in order to quickly resolve potential problems. Once the initial phase is completed at the end of the month, the feature will become available to more Twitter Blue users as the developers want to find out how people will use the feature in practice.

Twitter vice president of consumer products Jay Sullivan said in April that the post-editing feature is the most requested in years, while former CEO Jack Dorsey feared abuse and said in 2020 that it would "probably never" appear on the platform.

A month ago, Twitter raised the price of a premium subscription. Today, it includes the ability to unsend a message, a customizable navigation bar, collections of content from those the user follows, and hexagonal user pictures when loading an NFT. It is possible that editing tweets will never be available to users of the free version of the service.





UK may launch in-depth investigation into Microsoft's purchase of Activision Blizzard.
September 1, 2022

In early July, it became known that the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) was checking a deal to take over the gaming giant Activision Blizzard by Microsoft. Today, September 1, British regulators have announced the need to take a closer look at this transaction.

The UK Competition and Markets Authority has expressed concern that the massive $68.7 billion acquisition could hurt Microsoft's competitors, which could do nothing to restrict access to games from Activision Blizzard's vast library. CMA officials also fear that "the combined company will stifle competition in the emerging cloud gaming market."

The British authorities have given both companies five days to come up with proposals to address their concerns, otherwise they will conduct a more thorough investigation. Microsoft President Brad Smith said his company is "ready to work with the CMA on the next steps and resolve any issues."

Regulators around the world are scrutinizing the deal, which was announced in January. So far, only Saudi Arabia has announced approval of the purchase of Activision Blizzard.





The Perseverance rover has confirmed the ability to produce oxygen like a small tree seven times.
September 1, 2022

The Perseverance rover's MOXIE device was launched seven times on the surface of the Red Planet, producing oxygen from a carbon dioxide-rich atmosphere with the productivity of a small tree.

Since the beginning of the experimental work of the Perseverance Mars rover in April 2021, mission operators have launched the MOXIE (Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment) device seven times in various external conditions: day and night, and also at different times of the year, Science Advances reports. Each time the device was launched, it reached its nominal performance levels of 6 g of oxygen per hour - like a small tree.

The MOXIE is a small device about the size of a toaster - modest dimensions help it fit on board the Perseverance. The device is designed for short-term inclusions within the framework of a scientific mission. In the future, it is possible to create an enlarged version of it, capable of producing oxygen on an industrial scale, like hundreds of trees - it will be needed to support the life of the first people on Mars, as well as for the rocket fuel needed to return them to Earth.

The scientists say that the stable operation of MOXIE as part of the Perseverance mission can be regarded as a promising first step towards this goal, although it is already clear that the device needs some adjustments to work at dawn and dusk, that is, at times when the temperature of the atmosphere changes dramatically. The rarefied Martian atmosphere is 96% carbon dioxide, which a person cannot breathe, and it is much more changeable than the Earth's: during the year, its density can change twice, and its temperature can change by 100 degrees.

MOXIE separates oxygen atoms from carbon dioxide molecules, producing carbon monoxide as a waste product. Testing of the device continues. The researchers plan to increase its power and performance by carrying out launches in the Martian spring, when the density of the atmosphere is especially high. MOXIE also demonstrates increased endurance: the device continues to work despite a series of switching on and off with test runs at high operating temperatures, which did not harm it. Perhaps the industrial version will be able to work for several thousand hours in a row.





Cryptocom Withdraws €500M UEFA Champions League Sponsorship.
September 1, 2022

Cryptocom cryptocurrency platform has pulled out of a five-year €500 million sponsorship deal with the UEFA Champions League at the last minute, SportBusiness reports.

According to the publication, the company was supposed to replace Gazprom as the title sponsor of the tournament. The European football organization terminated the contract with the Russian holding in March after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Arrangements with Cryptocom implied the payment of €100 million per season by the platform, compared to about €40 million from Gazprom.

According to SportBusiness sources, the parties agreed on the deal in principle and were close to signing the agreement. Supposedly, in the history of the football union, this turned out to be the most advanced stage of negotiations, at which a commercial contract fell apart.

The interlocutors of the publication emphasized that the refusal of Cryptocom from sponsorship is not connected with the crisis that has gripped the cryptocurrency market. The company has faced legal challenges in some key European countries, including the UK, France and Italy, regarding the scope of its licenses.

Phil Carling, managing director of Octagon, drew attention to the reduction in financial flow to sports from the crypto industry: “Three months ago it was a hot sector, and they offered crazy money for premium rights. Now we do not observe this in any of the processes that we support. I'm not saying it's forever, everything can come back. But for now, the big money deals and breakthroughs in terms of commissions we've been getting are gone."

According to the publication, Cryptocom has recently allocated more than $1 billion for sports sponsorship. Among other things, this includes agreements with:

the Staples Center in Los Angeles ($700 million);
auto racing series "Formula 1";
the UFC mixed martial arts league ($175 million over 10 years);
Australian Football League;
FIFA World Cup in Qatar;
French club Paris Saint-Germain (at least $25 million over three years).

In February, Cryptocom, along with Coinbase and FTX, showed a record number of ads during the Super Bowl. A 30 second post cost $6.5 million.





Babylon Finance protocol to stop working due to Rari Capital hack.
September 1, 2022

The Babylon Finance protocol will shut down its activities due to an attack on the Rari Capital DeFi project, which resulted in several liquidity pools affected by the BABL token.

Clients were advised to withdraw funds by November 15th. The team will return the remaining assets in the coming weeks. Until September 4, management will provide additional information.

The decision comes after Rari canceled a planned refund to users affected by the attack.

The damage to Babylon Finance amounted to $3.4 million. In the following days, its users withdrew more than 75% of their assets.

“The Rari exploit […] led to a ‘point of no return’ for Babylon as a sustainable protocol. […] The price of BABL fell from $20 to $5, making it impossible to raise funds. The supply of tokens is limited, not subject to inflation. Only 10% remains in the treasury,” the message says.

The project team sought to restore TVL at the expense of commissions from users.

Babylon Finance's management fee is 0.5% of AUM. The protocol also collects a success fee of 5% of the income from transactions where user-provided BABLs served as collateral.

To continue the activity, the TVL indicator must be at least $50 million, the team noted.

Rari Capital was hacked on April 30th. The attacker withdrew $80 million that was stored in his Fuse credit pools. Users could create their own variants of baskets of ERC-20 tokens, including those involving BABL.

At its peak, TVL Babylon Finance reached $30 million. Prior to the incident, about 1,500 users contributed BABL tokens with a total value of $10 million to Rari Capital pools. This allowed the asset to enter the top 10 of the project.

The market reacted nervously to the message from the project team. According to CoinGecko, BABL has fallen in price by 92% over the past 24 hours, to $0.403.

In the first half of the year, hackers stole assets worth $1.97 billion from crypto projects.





Celsius filed a new class action lawsuit in the US.
September 1, 2022

A group of custodial account holders at Celsius Network have petitioned the Bankruptcy Court for permission to withdraw their funds.

The lawsuit brings together 64 investors who own $22.5 million worth of cryptocurrencies in the custodial service Celsius. The group is represented by the law firm Togut, Segal & Segal.

On June 13, the crypto lender suspended withdrawals, exchanges and transfers between accounts. A month later, on July 14, Celsius and some of its affiliates filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

The platform presented a business reorganization plan focused on using the income of the mining subsidiary to pay off the claims of creditors. Celsius' liabilities exceed the company's assets by $2.85 billion.

In a class action lawsuit filed by Togut, Segal & Segal, a group of clients are asking the court to issue a declaratory judgment requiring the platform to allow withdrawals from custodial accounts.

According to the document, these assets are separated from other Celsius products under the "Terms of Use" and customers retain permanent ownership of them.

In various hearings, the court "made it clear" that the assets in the custodial service are not the property of the company and should be returned to the investors, the plaintiffs said.

Account holders noted that the platform has the necessary volume and types of cryptocurrencies to meet their requirements, but it does not.

"The debtor's continued refusal to execute the seizure of all assets held in the custodial service has created enormous hardship for its users, as evidenced in hundreds of letters and pleadings filed during the hearing," the lawsuit says.

Cryptocurrency from custodial accounts cannot be used to cover the claims of investors in other platform products like Earn, the document says.

In July, law firm Bragar Eagel & Squire filed a class-action lawsuit on behalf of investors against Celsius. The company was accused of misleading users about "its financial products."

The platform also faced accusations from former DeFi contractor KeyFi of default, but countersued the firm and its founder in August.





South Korea arrests suspects linked to 'Kimchi premium'
September 1, 2022

South Korean authorities have arrested 16 people who are suspected of facilitating illegal foreign exchange transactions as part of the kimchi premium arbitrage. Seoul Daily News writes about it.

According to the publication, 75% of offenses in the field of withdrawal of capital from the country and money laundering are associated with cryptocurrencies.

Two of those arrested face prosecution, seven face fines, and no decision has yet been made on the rest.

One of the detainees is suspected of creating several shell companies in order to send funds abroad. In fact, we are talking about the transfer of digital assets from foreign accounts and their profitable sale on local exchanges thanks to the "kimchi premium", the journalists say.

Another arrested person is suspected of using import operations to mask transactions with cryptocurrencies.

In August, the FSS, in the course of investigating such violations, estimated the volume of foreign transfers to crypto exchanges at $6.5 billion.

For the first time, the problems associated with the “kimchi premium” were reported by the country’s authorities in October 2021.





Charles Hoskinson Explains Cardano's Lack of Token Burning Mechanism.
September 1, 2022

Unlike a number of other cryptocurrency projects, burning ADA tokens to create scarcity is not possible, as it would be “theft” of someone else’s property, said Cardano founder Charles Hoskinson.

He replied to a user who rebuked him for his ignorance. According to a commentator named PerAsperaVinco, the destruction of part of the property increases the value of the rest.

Hoskinson clarified during the discussion that some other projects have a team-controlled pool of tokens.

“There are usually several large premines that the founders control and destroy in order to manipulate the price during periods of low liquidity. ADA doesn’t have that,” he wrote.

According to Hoskinson, all ADA tokens are owned by their holders and staking pool operators. They are rewarded in a coin and taking away their ADA for burning will be nothing more than theft of property, the founder of Cardano emphasized.

On the Ethereum network, the mechanism for burning coins as part of transaction fees was activated in August 2021 during the London hard fork.

At the time of writing, the total number of liquidated tokens exceeded 2.6 million ETH. According to the forecast, after updating The Merge and switching to the Proof-of-Stake algorithm, the network will go into deflation mode.

One of the commentators recalled that Ethereum is technically unlimited. ADA, by analogy with bitcoin, has a limit on the market supply of the coin, he noted.

Cardano overtook Bitcoin in the global brand rankings, ranking 26th. Digital gold was on the 30th position.





OpenSea drops support for potential Ethereum forks.
September 1, 2022

In the event of a potential fork after The Merge update, non-fungible tokens in the Ethereum PoW network will not receive support on the OpenSea marketplace. This was reported by the platform management.

“We are committed to exceptional token support on the upgraded PoS [Proof-of-Stake] chain. We are preparing the product to ensure a smooth transition. […] We will monitor, manage and communicate throughout the process,” the statement said.

According to Cryptoslam, the volume of NFTs issued on the Ethereum blockchain is estimated at $29.6 billion.

In early August, some exchanges, including Poloniex and MEXC, launched trading tokens of potential ETHPoS (ETHS) and ETHPoW (ETHW) forks. The assets are traded as IOUs issued at a 1:1 peg to Ethereum.

Opinions regarding support for a possible PoW fork of Ethereum in the crypto community are divided. For example, crypto derivatives exchange BitMEX offered a futures based on ETHPoW. Huobi, Digifinex, and OKX said they would look into listing the asset.

The Chainlink decentralized oracle network has refused to support a potential fork. The Frax Finance team urged the community not to issue the FRAX algorithmic stablecoin on the PoW network.

CoinShares experts were skeptical about the prospects of the proposed fork.

Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin noted that stablecoin issuers will determine the future of Ethereum’s controversial hard forks.





California legislature approves cryptocurrency regulation project.
September 1, 2022

The California legislature has approved a bill that provides for the licensing of companies to provide crypto-financial services in the state. The document has been sent for Gov. Gavin Newsom's signature.

By September 30, Newsom must either sign the bill or veto it. If approved, the document will enter into force in January 2025.

The California Digital Financial Assets Act is based on the New York State BitLicense rules introduced in 2015.

“While the novelty of cryptocurrencies is part of what makes investing exciting, it also carries risks for consumers as companies in the space are not adequately regulated and do not have to follow many of the same rules that apply to everyone else,” said the author of the bill. Timothy Grayson.

Among the requirements of the California document is a ban on the issuance of stablecoins by issuers that do not have the status of a bank or have not received a license from the State Department of Financial Protection and Innovation. The restriction will be phased out by 2028.

Another stablecoin rule requires issuers holding securities to hold them for at least the “total value of outstanding coins issued or sold in the United States.”

In general, the bill introduces stricter regulation and supervision of the industry. The NYC BitLicense Code of Practice has been repeatedly criticized for being too strict. His action led to the departure of some crypto companies from the state. The need for easing the rules was even announced by the State Financial Services Authority.

The California option was opposed by the industry lobbying organization Blockchain Association.

“The bill introduces short-sighted and unhelpful restrictions that will hinder the work of crypto innovators and push many out of the state,” the group said in a statement.

In July, amid a market crash, the US Federal Reserve called for tighter regulation and supervision of the crypto industry at the federal level.





NASA will allocate $ 1.4 billion to SpaceX for the implementation of five more missions to deliver astronauts to the ISS.
September 1, 2022

SpaceX will receive funds from NASA to deliver five more missions to the International Space Station (ISS) under a new $1.4 billion contract, an addition to an agreement already in place between the two organizations. So far, SpaceX is the only private company allowed to deliver astronauts to the station.

According to NASA, the deal provides for the use of Crew Dragon spacecraft and Falcon 9 launch vehicles, and provides the aerospace agency with uninterrupted crew access to the ISS until 2030. We are talking about missions from Crew-10 to Crew-14. For example, the crew of Crew-4 is currently on the station, and Crew-5 is expected to leave for the ISS in early October.

While NASA is poised to bet on Boeing's Starliner in the future, which is slated to go into space fairly soon, SpaceX is currently the only business certified to fly crewed missions for the agency. It is also scheduled to complete three qualifying missions in December as part of a 2014 Commercial Crew Transportation Capabilities (CctCap) contract change - the company's transportation system is the only one that meets the security requirements for private companies. In total, the CCtCap deal is valued at $4.9 billion.

It is known that NASA plans to carry out missions to organize crew flights to the ISS until at least 2030, most recently the agency received US President Joe Biden's approval to use the station for another six years after 2024.

According to reports, the largest US partner in the ISS project, Russia, which has the means to adjust the ISS orbit, has already announced a possible withdrawal from the project after 2024. However, it is likely that the new Russian station will start operating no earlier than 2028.





Georgia to update crypto regulation to comply with EU rules.
September 1, 2022

The Georgian authorities have approved an updated regulatory framework for the financial sector that regulates cryptocurrency trading in the country. This was stated by Deputy Prime Minister Levan Davitashvili, Business Media Georgia reports.

The package of legislation provides for convergence with three EU directives - on payment services, capital requirements and virtual asset service providers. Davitashvili called the latter “particularly important” for the formation of sustainable regulation of the cryptocurrency industry in the country.

According to him, the document has been sent to the parliament. The amendments are planned to be adopted during the autumn session.

In April, the chairman of the Central Bank of Georgia, Koba Gvenetadze, announced the preparation of a legislative framework focused on the digital asset industry. A month later, the vice president of the regulator, Papuna Lezhava, announced that the final version of the document would be published in the summer or fall of 2022.

In early July, the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament tentatively agreed on the provisions of the MiCA cryptocurrency regulation bill. It describes the rules that apply to issuers of unsecured crypto assets, stablecoins, trading and custodial platforms.

Later, members of the European Green Party and Socialists proposed extending the standards of AML/CFT procedures to decentralized organizations, DeFi sites and NFT platforms.

The EU authorities also decided to create a new regulatory body, which will be entrusted with the direct supervision of the cryptocurrency business.





NVIDIA risks losing $400 million due to new anti-China sanctions.
September 1, 2022

Based on the level of performance provided by the A100 computing accelerators, the US authorities banned NVIDIA from supplying not only them, but also more modern H100s to China and Russia. The company expressed concern not only with the ability to complete the development of a new generation of accelerators on schedule, but also with a loss of up to 10% of revenue in the server direction.

The fact is, as Reuters explains, that NVIDIA has already concluded contracts with Chinese customers for the supply of computing accelerators from the “prohibited nomenclature” for a total of $400 million, and if Chinese companies do not switch to alternative brand products that are not subject to new restrictions, then a proportionate portion of third-quarter revenue may be lost. NVIDIA has expressed its willingness to apply for an export license that would allow it to continue shipping accelerators to China, but it is unsure of the success of this venture.

From the point of view of the spread of these restrictions on the supply of accelerators to Russia, the impact on NVIDIA's business is unlikely to be significant. Firstly, the company stopped official deliveries of its products to the Russian market in the spring. Secondly, she explained that in the total structure of revenue, our country formed no more than two percent, and only in the gaming segment, Russian clients provided it with four percent of revenue. Apparently, in the server segment, NVIDIA's dependence on the Russian market was even weaker.

It is noteworthy that NVIDIA's 10-Q quarterly report published yesterday demonstrates its high dependence on the Chinese market as a whole. For example, in the last quarter, it gained almost 24% of the total amount of $6.7 billion here. a serious blow. The news sent the company's stock down 6.56%.





US authorities have imposed restrictions on the supply of advanced AMD and NVIDIA computing accelerators to China and Russia.
September 1, 2022

The last day of the calendar summer brought bad news to Chinese and Russian customers of AMD and NVIDIA. The US authorities have banned both companies from supplying GPU-based accelerators that meet certain performance criteria to these countries. In the case of NVIDIA, we are talking about products of the A100 and H100 series, and AMD included the Instinct MI250 accelerators in the list of “sanctions”.

According to AMD representatives, as Reuters explains, the supply of Instinct MI100 accelerators has not been banned. At the same time, AMD believes that the new restrictions will not have a significant impact on the company's business, since trading volumes in this direction were not large enough. Shares of NVIDIA against the backdrop of these news lost more than 6% in price, in the case of AMD, the decline did not exceed 3.8%. It is believed that the speed of the NVIDIA A100 solution with the Ampere architecture is taken as the performance level that determines the need to ban the accelerator supplies to China and Russia.

According to the intention of US officials, advanced US-origin components should not be used by Chinese and Russian clients to improve military technology. The banned AMD and NVIDIA accelerators can theoretically be used in speech recognition systems for listening to conversations and recognizing military targets in terrain images received from reconnaissance satellites.





Vulnerability found in TikTok that allowed accounts to be hijacked via a malicious link.
September 1, 2022

A “high-severity” vulnerability has been discovered in the TikTok short video service, which could allow attackers to gain access to a user’s account with a single click.

The vulnerability was discovered in the TikTok Android app by the Microsoft 365 Defender Research Team, who shared the details of the vulnerability on their blog. The user only had to click on a malicious link, and the attacker took control of his account with the ability to upload and publish videos, send messages to other users, and view private videos stored in the account.

Microsoft reported a vulnerability to TikTok that affected deep linking functionality in the Android app, and the service promptly fixed it. “TikTok responded quickly, and we appreciate the efficient and professional response from the security team,” said Tanmay Ganacharya, partner director of security research at Microsoft Defender for Endpoint.

TikTok spokeswoman Maureen Shanahan noted that the TikTok Android app has received more than 1.5 billion downloads on the Google Play Store, so the damage from this vulnerability could potentially be enormous. However, there is no evidence that anyone took advantage of this bug.





Arm sues Qualcomm and Nuvia over license violations.
September 1, 2022

Arm is suing Qualcomm and Nuvia. They are accused of violating licensing agreements signed with Arm, as well as the trademark rights of the British chip designer.

Qualcomm has dominated the mobile chipset market for years. However, things in the PC segment are not working out for her. To boost its potential in the PC market, Qualcomm last year acquired Nuvia, a startup that has been developing Arm computer processors that could theoretically compete with Apple's solutions in the mobile and desktop segments.

The British Arm cooperates with two types of clients: companies that use its designs as the basis for their own chips, as well as companies that license only Arm instruction sets for their own processors. Qualcomm and Nuvia have had agreements with Arm on both fronts for years. However, licenses do not provide for the possibility of their transfer from company to company and differ in details.

Therefore, according to Arm, Qualcomm, with the acquisition of Nuvia, "attempted to intercept Nuvia's licenses without Arm's consent." From this, the British developer concluded that the licensing agreements signed between him, Qualcomm and Nuvia separately are violated in this way. In this regard, in March 2022, Arm revoked licenses from Nuvia to use its technologies. However, the latter continued to develop chips with a set of its software instructions.

As a result, Arm has filed a lawsuit to ban the development of certain Nuvia chips that can still use its technology. In addition, the company seeks compensation for violation of the rights to its trademark. The Arm lawsuit could set back Qualcomm and Nuvia's efforts to develop chips for laptops, desktops and servers for months to come. In addition, for both companies, this can result in large fines.





Twitter wanted to make money as OnlyFans, but failed to cope with moderation.
September 1, 2022

In the spring of 2022, Twitter wanted to make a radical change. For many years, the service has been calm about the abundance of adult content on the platform, and the company has seriously thought about monetizing this content on the basis of paid subscriptions, as is done on OnlyFans. However, the plans were not destined to come true due to the inability of the platform to promptly remove prohibited content, according to The Verge.

If the project were successful, Twitter would certainly lose many advertisers, but this could more than be compensated by revenue from adult content creators: OnlyFans revenue could reach $ 2.5 billion this year alone - about half of Twitter's revenue in 2021 . The management of the microblogging service initially considered the idea successful, especially since many OnlyFans authors promote their channels on Twitter. Therefore, resources were allocated to implement the idea, and the project itself was called ACM (Adult Content Monetization - “Monetization of adult content”).

To work on the project, a Red Team department of 84 people was formed. And very quickly, already in April 2022, the staff of the department came to the conclusion that Twitter was unable to ensure the safe sale of subscriptions to adult content, because the platform did not and still does not control the publication of illegal content. As it turned out, the company simply does not have tools with which to check whether both the creators and consumers of adult content have reached the age of majority. And in May, that is, after the start of the epic with the purchase of Twitter Elon Musk, the project was postponed indefinitely.

Red Team employees said that the launch of ACM would only exacerbate the problem, as more adult content would be posted on the platform, which would increase the amount of illegal content. However, after the suspension of work on the project, the management, perfectly aware of the essence of the problem, still does nothing to solve it. It became known about it 15 months earlier, when the company commissioned another team of experts to begin work on the improvement of content on Twitter. Then it turned out that the company's means of detecting materials containing child abuse had lost their relevance and effectiveness.

At the same time, tech giants like Google and Facebook* take the problem much more seriously: in 2019, Mark Zuckerberg boasted that Facebook* controlled by him only spends more on security than Twitter earns. Technology platforms support each other in this fight: one of the main tools is the PhotoDNA service, created by Microsoft in 2009. However, this system only responds to known banned materials.

Unlike other large companies that have already developed their own solutions, Twitter employees have to manually try to detect content that PhotoDNA missed, and the company's main working tool is a certain RedPanda complex, which is now outdated and has lost support. The machine learning-based systems at Twitter's disposal are still unable to detect prohibited content in any of the available formats. And moderators don’t always do their job — in one case, a video with illegal content remained on the platform for more than 23 hours, even after users filed complaints about it. Although, according to company spokeswoman Katie Rosborough, Twitter significantly increased its investment in identifying such materials in February 2021, and even today, when the company has tightened its personnel policy, four vacancies appear for this profile.

However, the company may not be able to keep what has been achieved. On August 23, Twitter announced that the anti-malicious content department was merging with the department responsible for fighting spambots. The company took this measure, of course, due to the fact that Elon Musk accused Twitter management of providing false information on the issue of spam on the platform. Perhaps the businessman wrongly decided that this issue was the most important. And it's possible that Twitter's problems with Elon Musk are just beginning.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





The ban on sales of cars with internal combustion engines from 2035, following California, will be introduced by other states.
August 31, 2022

Following the introduction last week by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) of new regulations that would put a statewide ban on sales of new internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles in 2035, several states have announced about the intention to follow the example of California.

The U.S. Clean Air Act gives California the ability to set tougher emissions standards for new vehicles than national standards that other states can then impose. Moreover, the states do not require the approval of the federal government if their new regulations are identical to those approved in California.

This week, the state of Virginia announced that under a 2021 state law, Virginia, too, must phase out sales of new ICE vehicles by 2035. However, the office of Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares expressed hope that the state would repeal this law in order not to follow the policy of California.

California's decision was supported by 15 states, and Washington, Oregon, Massachusetts and New York intend to legislate a similar decision.

Like Virginia, Massachusetts and Washington have so-called trigger laws (laws that take effect when circumstances change). In Washington, the 2020 law is tied to California emissions regulations, meaning that whenever California tightens energy regulations, Washington will follow suit.

The proposed bill in Massachusetts indicated that the state would follow California's lead, meaning the state's Department of Environmental Protection now has to introduce similar rules before 2035. The bill also proposes to increase discounts for those who buy new electric vehicles.

Oregon has said it plans to introduce regulations that would ban the sale of new non-zero-emission vehicles in the state by 2035.

Recall that last year, New York Governor Kathy Hochul signed into law a bill that would require all cars and trucks sold in the state to be zero-emission vehicles by 2035. For medium and heavy duty vehicles, the deadline is 2045.





Snap to lay off 20% of employees.
August 31, 2022

Snapchat, the owner of Snapchat, plans to lay off a fifth of its more than 6,400 employees, reports The Verge, citing its own sources. The reduction program has been worked out over the past few weeks, and its implementation will begin today.

Some Snap departments will lose more employees than others. In particular, the division responsible for the platform for developing mini-applications inside the messenger, as well as the Zenly geolocation service team, the project was absorbed by Snap in 2017, will be strongly affected. The number of units responsible for the release of devices will be significantly reduced - the company previously demonstrated Spectacles augmented reality glasses and Pixy selfie drone.

The scale of the cuts is no doubt significant, but since the beginning of the year, Snap shares have lost almost 80% in price. The financial report for the second quarter was so depressing that the company decided not to make forecasts for the third quarter. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Snap has been actively increasing its staff: in March 2020, the company had 3,427 employees, and as of the end of the second quarter of 2022, already 6,446. At the same time, WaveOptics, specializing in augmented reality displays, was acquired in May for $500 million.

Snap didn't weather the pandemic very well, and the situation was subsequently made worse by the new iOS privacy policy, which dealt a heavy blow to Snapchat's advertising business. At the same time, the service's user base continues to grow: today it is 347 million people a day, that is, more than Twitter. However, the company has made a profit only once since 2017, when it went public.





Japanese government to stop requiring digital content on CDs and floppy disks.
August 31, 2022

Japan's Digital Minister Taro Kono has vowed to scrap regulations requiring data to be sent to government departments on CDs or floppy disks. The official made this statement during a speech at a conference where a strategy for the development of digital public services was discussed, writes The Register.

Digital government services, by their very nature, involve sending data to government departments, and the minister promised to start reviewing the rules governing the provision of information. As it turned out, there are more than 1900 acts in the country that determine the transfer of data to government agencies, and many of them require the use of outdated drives today. At the same time, relevant methods, and primarily downloading information via the Internet, are not described in the documents, which means that they are not technically allowed. Mr. Kono promised to rewrite these norms as soon as possible, which impede the implementation of the country's digital program.

Mr. Kono is not the first member of the government to try to provide Japan with adequate mechanisms for digital transformation. Last year, Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga intended to eliminate printing and faxes from circulation as much as possible, but he did not stay in office for long and did not have time to implement his plan. Kono is younger and more tech-savvy: at the conference, he approved a plan to overcome the lack of technical skills, modernize communications systems, and implement Web3 solutions.

Unfortunately, Japan isn't the only one using obsolete technology due to outdated legislation: just last year, South Korea stopped using ActiveX controls on government websites, an antiquated decision that embodied Microsoft's attempt to counter Java applets. In China, they still use seals, which the former head of the Arm China division successfully played on for a long time. The US Internal Revenue Service still accepts declarations only in paper form, and department employees manually enter data into a computer, not even being able to resort to OCR technologies.





The police caught the founder of the Thodex crypto-exchange, who escaped with $ 2 billion - now he faces 40 thousand years in prison.
August 31, 2022

It became known about the detention in Albania of the founder of the largest Turkish crypto exchange Thodex Faruk Fatih Özer. According to the portal Decrypt, in Turkey, state prosecutors previously demanded a sentence of 40,564 years in prison for him.

According to the Turkish Ministry of Internal Affairs, Ozer was included in the so-called. an Interpol red notice is a request to law enforcement agencies around the world to search for and pre-arrest this or that inhabitant of the planet. The identity of Ozer is associated with the sudden shutdown of the crypto exchange, as a result of which thousands of users lost access to their accounts and funds. 390 thousand people became victims, and the total losses of investors are estimated at $2 billion.

According to the Turkish authorities, the process of Ozer's extradition to Turkey was initiated by Interpol. A harsh trial awaits him in the country - according to reports, all top managers of the closed exchanger face thousands of years in prison.

The Thodex exchange has been operating since 2017, but unexpectedly stopped trading in April 2021. Its leadership referred to some external investment, which required a halt in trading for 4-5 days. A day later, Ozer said that the company was forced to stop trading due to cyber attacks, but continued to insist that client funds were safe and promised to return investors' money as soon as possible. On the same day, the Turkish police detained 62 people associated with the activities of the exchange, seized the company's computers and froze its accounts, and Ozer himself had already flown to Albania by that time.

Although Turkey requested the extradition of the founder of Thodex, the process dragged on - it took months to find the perpetrator. In the end, he was found in the city of Vlore, the identity was established based on biometric data.

Back in April 2021, it was revealed that Thodex transferred $125 million in bitcoins to the accounts of the American crypto exchange Kraken before closing. According to Whitestream, which identified the transaction, it was an attempt to cash out funds stolen by the management of the exchange from customers.

The cryptocurrency market is already going through difficult times: the other day, the bitcoin rate fell below $20,000. However, some experts are optimistic and are sure that this state of affairs opens up opportunities for purchasing crypto assets at a low price.





Apple to leave Jane Horvath, who since 2011 was responsible for the safety and security of the iPhone.
August 31, 2022

Apple's head of privacy Jane Horvath is preparing to leave her high-paying position at the company to join law firm Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, according to online sources. Bloomberg writes about this, citing its own informed sources.

Curiously, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, of which Horvath is due to join soon, has partnered with Apple on numerous occasions. The companies last worked together as part of a lawsuit with Epic Games, which accused Apple of illegally charging a 30% fee for transactions conducted in iOS applications.

Horvath herself works at Apple in 2011. Along with Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, she was the face of the company in the segment of security and privacy measures. In recent years, Apple has implemented many features that help users fight against unauthorized tracking and securely protect their data from being processed by third parties. Over time, privacy has become one of the central elements of Apple's marketing campaign.

Although Horvath's dismissal has not yet been officially announced, the source notes that she has already notified the legal department of the company about her departure. Prior to joining Apple, Horvath worked on privacy issues at Google and also worked for the US Department of Justice.





Starlink internet comes to cruise ships: SpaceX signs first contract with cruise ship operator.
August 31, 2022

Royal Caribbean Cruises will offer guests access to high-speed internet during their travels, which will be provided by SpaceX with its Starlink satellite network. This will bring the quality of rest to a new level.

The partnership between Royal Caribbean and SpaceX is an attempt to change the traditional situation when cruise liners lack high-quality and inexpensive Internet access. It is reported that the implementation of the technology has already begun on all ships of the company, and the end of equipping the liners will end at the beginning of next year.

According to Royal Caribbean CEO Jason Liberty, the technology will provide "game-changing" Internet connectivity on ships. In particular, this will improve the quality and availability of some Internet services that require a large bandwidth - such as the use of video streaming services and video calls.

According to SpaceX, the company's Internet service will make Royal Caribbean cruises "even more luxurious." It is known that the Starlink constellation in low Earth orbit today has about 2,800 satellites.

In June, the US Federal Communications Commission approved the provision of Starlink satellite Internet to passengers and crews of ships and aircraft, as well as truck drivers. The announcement of Royal Caribbean came shortly after SpaceX partnered with T-Mobile to provide Starlink satellites with smartphones, potentially allowing them to communicate anywhere in the world.

In addition to the cruise line, SpaceX has already signed tentative agreements with some commercial carriers to provide Wi-Fi onboard airliners. In particular, while we are talking about Hawaiian Airlines and JSX.





TSMC's 5nm Fab Construction Lures Over 20 Taiwanese Tech Companies to Arizona.
August 31, 2022

By 2024, TSMC is set to launch a new 5nm contract manufacturing facility in Arizona that will be the most advanced outside of Taiwan. The authorities of this US state emphasize that the ecosystem of suppliers of TSMC is reaching for this company in Arizona, more than 20 Taiwanese companies express intentions to invest in the state's economy.

This was announced by Governor Doug Ducey during his visit to Taiwan. The program of his trip included a meeting not only with the top political leadership of the island, but also with representatives of TSMC and other companies expressing interest in expanding their presence in Arizona. The main manufacturing facility for TSMC's new facility in the state is now under construction, the governor said, just two years after the announcement of intent.

Business ties between Arizona and Taiwan have been developing for many decades. For example, Taiwan Air Force pilots have been training at the Phoenix military base for the past 25+ years. The Governor stressed that TSMC will face a shortage of qualified personnel when looking for personnel for its new facility in Arizona, but according to him, this problem is not specific to this territory, but is characteristic of the current stage of development of the global semiconductor industry as a whole.

Last year, trade between Arizona and Taiwan reached $1.92 billion, with more than 100 Taiwanese companies investing in the state's economy. With South Korea, Arizona's trade reached $882 million last year, after visiting Taiwan, the state governor will head to the Land of Morning Calm.





NASA will try again to launch the SLS lunar rocket into space on September 3.
August 31, 2022

This week, the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) planned to launch the Space Launch System super-heavy launch vehicle into space with the Orion spacecraft as part of the Artemis 1 lunar mission. However, due to a technical malfunction, the launch was canceled. Now it has become known that the aerospace department will repeat the launch attempt on September 3.

If all goes according to plan, the launch of the SLS rocket from pad 39B at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida will take place on September 3rd. Everyone will be able to watch the launch online on the official website of NASA and the YouTube channel of the aerospace department.

Recall that initially the launch of the SLS rocket with the Orion spacecraft was to take place on August 29. During refueling of the carrier tanks, a hydrogen leak was detected. Refueling was later resumed, but it turned out that one of the engines could not provide the required hydrogen flow rate during the pre-launch pumping procedure. Because of this, it was not possible to bring the temperature of all engines to the required temperature. Ultimately, it was decided to postpone the launch.

As part of the Artemis 1 mission, an SLS rocket will be launched with an uncrewed Orion spacecraft. During the 42-day mission, Orion must fly around the moon and return to Earth. If this stage is completed successfully, then as part of the Artemis 2 mission, a crew of astronauts will go flying around the satellite of our planet. This mission is planned to be carried out in 2024. As for the landing of astronauts on the surface of the moon, it is supposed to be part of the Artemis 3 mission, which will take place no earlier than 2025.





HP Inc cuts PC shipments by 25% and lowers earnings forecast.
August 31, 2022

In the HP Inc. calendar. the third quarter has already ended, which allowed the company to publish reports for the past three-month period. Revenue fell 4.1% to $14.7 billion and fell short of market expectations, while consumer PC shipments brought the company 20% less cash than a year earlier. According to the management of HP Inc., the unfavorable situation with the decline in demand will continue over the next two quarters.

Along the way, the company cut its full-year earnings guidance to $4.02 per share from $4.24 previously. CEO Enrique Lores explained that HP Inc. following the example of many other companies, it faced a decrease in consumer demand, and in the fourth quarter it is unlikely that anything will change for the better.

Personal systems revenue fell 3% to $10.1 billion, although it grew 7% in the commercial segment. In quantitative terms, PC shipments decreased by 25%, and the company delivered 32% less laptops than a year earlier. Until now, demand in the commercial segment has allowed HP Inc. more or less successfully resist the decline in demand for laptops, but now there is deterioration.

Printing devices revenue fell 6% to $4.6 billion, falling short of analysts' forecasts. The company's ability to supply a sufficient number of printing devices is still limited by the shortage of components. It is noteworthy that the volume of shipments of desktop systems in kind in the past quarter increased by one percent.





South Korean chip makers face a drop in product shipments for the first time in three years.
August 31, 2022

As reported with reference to the statistical authorities of South Korea, suppliers of semiconductor products from this country for the first time in three years in July faced a decrease in shipments - in an annual comparison, it amounted to 22.7%, although shipments increased by 5.1% in June. Warehouse stocks in July increased by 80% compared to the same period last year.

All this, according to the source, indicates a decrease in demand for the products of Korean chip suppliers, the main type of which remains memory chips. Production volumes have been declining for the fourth month in a row, but this does not cancel the trend towards increasing inventories. The problem is not exclusive on a geographical basis - the American company Micron Technology also warned investors about the upcoming decrease in demand for memory.

In July, for the first time in more than two years, exports of high-tech products from South Korea fell. Shipments of memory chips decreased by 13.5%, although in general, July export earnings in the country increased by 9.4%. In general, industrial production in South Korea grew in July by 1.5% compared to the same month last year, which is below the forecast of 2.6%.





Trump's Truth Social banned from Google Play Store due to poor content moderation.
August 31, 2022

Former US President Donald Trump's social networking app Truth Social has yet to be approved for distribution on the Google Play Store due to inefficient content moderation, a Google spokesperson said on Tuesday.

This delay reflects badly on the development of the social network. Android-based smartphones make up about 40% of the US market, and without the Google Play Store, this part of the users do not have the opportunity to download Truth Social on their devices. The Truth Social app is currently only available on the Apple App Store (as of February 21 this year).

“On August 19, we notified Truth Social of several standard policy violations in their app and reiterated that having effective user-generated content moderation systems in place is a condition for any app to run on Google Play. We have also raised concerns with Truth Social about violations of Play Store policies that prohibit content such as physical threats and incitement to violence,” Google said in a statement. “Last week, Truth Social sent a response letter acknowledging our concerns and saying that they are working to address these issues.”

Truth Social allowed Trump to resurface on social media more than a year after he was banned from Twitter, Facebook* and YouTube due to the riots at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021, when he was accused of posting messages inciting violence.

Developer TMTG has promised to provide Truth Social with "engaging and uncensored communication" for those segments of the audience who feel their views on sensitive topics such as the outcome of the 2020 presidential election have been intentionally removed from mainstream social platforms.

TMTG is actively partnering with Hive, a San Francisco-based company that is developing an AI-based moderation system to filter explicit content, hate speech, bullying, and violence in the app.

The live moderators decide what to do with the content marked by Hive AI. While the overall scope of TMTG's work on moderation is unclear, according to an announcement on the site, the company is actively recruiting for a "content administrator" position whose job it will be to review "content posted by users on Truth Social for compliance with established community guidelines."


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





Fireblocks adds support for DeFi apps and NFTs powered by Solana.
August 31, 2022

Cryptocurrency custodian Fireblocks has added support for decentralized applications and the Solana NFT ecosystem for users and developers, reports The Block.

“The Fireblocks web3 engine offers Solana developers the highest level of security when it comes to accessing the blockchain and its ecosystem of applications,” said CEO Michael Shaulov.

The Solana ecosystem is in 6th place in the DeFi Llama ranking, behind Ethereum, Tron, BNB Chain, Avalanche and Polygon. Her TVL is $1.37 billion.

Solana is second only to Ethereum in terms of NFT trading volume.

In early August, unknown persons hacked about 8,000 Solana-based wallets and withdrew millions of dollars. Before that, there were other serious problems with the cryptocurrency network, such as clock desynchronization and prolonged outages.

In January, Fireblocks raised $550 million in a Series E funding round. Investors valued the company at $8 billion.





Former head of Turkish crypto exchange Thodex detained in Albania.
August 31, 2022

Law enforcement officers of Albania, at the request of the Turkish authorities, detained the founder and former CEO of the Thodex cryptocurrency exchange, Faruk Fatih Ozer.

According to a statement by the Turkish Interior Ministry, the identity of the detainee was confirmed by a biometric examination.

The country's Interpol branch initiated the extradition procedure for Ozer, for whom a "red notice" was issued.

On April 20, 2021, Thodex unexpectedly stopped trading. Initially, the platform cited technical work, but then claimed to be transferring the business to a "major partner", which would supposedly take 4-5 days. Users were concerned about the closure of social media accounts by the company.

As part of the investigation into the alleged exit scam, authorities issued arrest warrants for 78 people associated with the platform. Most of the suspects were arrested.

However, according to media reports, Ozer flew to Albania on April 20. He had previously assured Twitter users that he had no plans to go into hiding.

In April 2022, it became known that the court had asked for 40,564 years in prison for Ozer and 20 others suspected of implementing a fraudulent scheme.

The investigation estimated the damage from the activities of the exchange at 356 million Turkish liras (~$24 million). According to Chainalysis analysts, this figure was $2.6 billion.

In April 2021, the Turkish exchange Vebitcoin stopped working, in relation to which the authorities launched an investigation.





Glassnode: Bitcoin Holds $20,000 Despite Weak Metrics.
August 30, 2022

Speculators are using bounces to sell bitcoin amid weakness in on-chain metrics. The price is not returning to lows due to the lack of serious selling pressure, according to analysts at Glassnode.

Bulls are still unable to establish a sustainable uptrend due to low demand, and spending patterns indicate continued bearish sentiment.

The hodlers remain steadfast. Glassnode is counting on reaching a range of bottom formation, as has been the case in previous cycles of downward momentum.

The seven-day moving average of the spent exit in terms of its "lifetime" (ASOL) after a recent spike (hodler spending) continues to decline. Together with the fall in the price of bitcoin, this indicates the absorption of current demand by supply.

The Average Coin Dormancy metric, which takes into account the amount of coins spent, shows that the recent activity of long-term investors was insignificant in terms of volume. This confirms extremely weak demand against the backdrop of low activity of hodlers.

The seven-day moving average of the number of active addresses (excluding interconnected ones) is testing the lower limit of the bearish channel. A further decline in the metric would mean "a sad deterioration in the user base, which has not been observed for many years," the specialists emphasized.

While hodlers have reduced activity, and among speculators the position “return their money without loss” prevails (sell at a price not lower than the purchase price), market participants as a whole record daily losses of $220 million.

This is a relatively modest figure compared to recent capitulations, when the figure reached several billion dollars.

The return of the Net Realized Profit/Loss metric (30-day moving average) to positive territory will be a sign of potential market strength and a recovery in demand.

The Adjusted Spent Exit Profit Ratio (SOPR) did not break the bar of 1 when the price of bitcoin was testing the $24,000 mark. Speculators are closing positions without loss or with relatively small losses. A return of the metric above 1 will confirm a recovery in demand.

The LTH-SOPR indicator, which filters out coins less than 155 days old, remains in the range of 0.6-0.65. This indicates the highest sales activity from buyers in the period 2021-2022. A return of a metric above 1 would be a constructive signal, but it could take months, the experts concluded.

Joshua Lim, head of derivatives division at Genesis Trading, named three reasons for the weak dynamics of bitcoin.

Earlier, the founder of Look Into Bitcoin, Philip Swift, pointed to a possible fall in the price of the first cryptocurrency based on the Whale Shadows indicator.





Immunefi experts estimated the value of the stolen 134 BAYC at $13.6 million.
August 30, 2022

The cost of 143 tokens from the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) NFT collection, which were marked with suspicious activity by the OpenSea marketplace, is $13.58 million, according to Immunefi bug bounty platform specialists.

134 out of 143 tokens worth $12.64 million retain this status.

The most expensive BAYC in this sample was last traded at 194 ETH ($267,914).

Such NFTs cannot be bought, sold, or transferred using the OpenSearch feature.

OpenSea does not store tokens on the platform. Attackers can use other services to transfer or sell stolen NFTs, or interact with interested users directly.

After the transfer of ownership, the token may lose such marking. Immunefi cited Bored Ape #9988 as an example. The NFT changed hands as a result of a 6.13 ETH swap to Bored Ape #753 in the NFTX liquidity pool.

The experts recalled that the best protection of tokens from intruders is the cold storage of assets. Users fall prey to hackers through phishing, malicious links and programs, and viruses.

In the event of an attack on the NFT marketplace, experts recommended canceling any access to the platform and moving the tokens to a hardware wallet.

Immunefi estimated the loss of crypto projects from hacks in the second quarter at $670.7 million.

According to the results of January-March 2022, the indicator amounted to $1.22 billion.





The 10,000 BTC that came into motion are linked to the Mt. gox.
August 30, 2022

A connection has been established between 10,000 BTC, which began to move on August 29 for the first time since 2013, and the bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange Mt. gox. This is reported by the GFiS Telegram channel.

Each of the transaction chains associated with both withdrawals reportedly featured the same wallet that accepted 134,000 BTC from Mt. Gox, during a cyberattack on the stock exchange in the summer of 2011.

The founders of the later BTC-e exchange and its successor Wex were suspected of organizing the hack.

“Given the events taking place now with the leaders of these two exchanges, if they were involved in the summer cyber attack, it is possible that the old piggy banks are opened under the influence of law enforcement agencies. If these were other persons, then such a coincidence in dates still looks quite curious, ”wrote the authors of GFiS.

Earlier it was reported that historically the movement of large sums dormant for a long time preceded significant corrections.

Once the largest bitcoin exchange, Mt. Gox collapsed in early 2014. This happened after information appeared about her alleged hack and theft of 800,000 BTC ($480 million at the time). In December 2018, the former head of the platform, Mark Karpeles, during the closing speech in a Tokyo court, pleaded not guilty to the events that caused the loss of millions of customers and the collapse of the company.

The investigation found that almost half of those stolen in 2014 from Mt. Gox bitcoin, subsequently ended up on a competing platform - BTC-e, behind which is the supposedly front London company Always Efficient LLP with an opaque ownership structure.

Recently, the exchange's creditors denied rumors about the reimbursement of funds as part of the civil rehabilitation process.





Binance climbs to sixth place in the global unicorn rankings.
August 30, 2022

The $45 billion Bitcoin exchange Binance ranked sixth in the global unicorn ranking, according to Hurun Research's semi-annual Global Unicorn Index 2022 report.

The cryptocompany has risen immediately by 15 positions. Six months ago, its capitalization was $15 billion.

The first line in the list was retained by Douyin ($200 billion). Media platform operator TikTok down $150 billion.

Elon Musk's SpaceX ($125 billion) moved up to second place, ahead of Ant Group ($120 billion).

In total, Hurun counted 1312 non-public companies with a valuation of more than $1 billion in 48 countries. Their combined value is $4.2 trillion, with the top 10 accounting for 17.6% of the total.

“In the first six months of the year, 369 new unicorns were identified – two per day. Almost a third of them are engaged in fintech, SaaS and blockchain. 80% provide services and only 20% have physical products. 65% sell to businesses and 35% to consumers,” said Hurun Principal Researcher Rupert Hugewerf.

The US leads with 625 companies in the ranking. Over the past six months, their number has grown by 138. China is next with 312 unicorns (+11).

Third place was retained by India with 68 positions in the list. Outside the country, the Indian founders created another 56 "unicorns".

Among the cities, the title of "Unicorn Capital of the World" was retained by San Francisco - 176 companies. New York has overtaken Beijing in the ranking - 120 against 90 startups.

The top 10 "new faces" in the ranking since the beginning of the year were two representatives of the blockchain industry: the operator of the Upbit exchange, Dunamu ($8 billion) and the KuCoin platform ($6.3 billion).

In March, Forbes ranked the founder and CEO of Binance, Changpeng Zhao, as the number one billionaire in the cryptocurrency industry. The publication credited him with a fortune of $19 billion.

In November 2021, China Caijing journalists estimated Zhao's wealth at $90 billion. In January, Bloomberg named a similar figure - $96 billion.





The Whale Shadows indicator indicated a likely fall in the price of bitcoin.
August 30, 2022

Approximately 5,000 BTC, which had been “hibernating” for the past 7-9 years, began to move. This was announced by the founder of Look Into Bitcoin Philip Swift, referring to the data of the Whale Shadows indicator.

The description of the on-chain tool states that historically, such bursts of activity preceded significant corrections. This is clearly shown in the chart attached to the next tweet. https://twitter.com/PositiveCrypto

At the time of writing, bitcoin is trading in the $20,450 region. Over the past seven days, its price has dipped by 4.3%. The total capitalization of the cryptocurrency market is ~$1 trillion.

Earlier, the head of Capriole Investments, Charles Edwards, stated the passage of the capitulation phase of bitcoin miners.





Experts have discovered a campaign of hidden mining that affected 11 countries.
August 30, 2022

Nitrokod's stealth mining campaign allegedly infected thousands of computers in 11 countries with malware. This was reported by experts at Check Point Research (CPR).

The attackers introduced stealth mining utilities into free apps based on popular services like Google Translate or YouTube Music.

The campaign is associated with the Turkish software developer Nitrokod, which has been operating since 2019. The company offers ostensibly free programs, the official desktop versions of which do not exist.

Most of these applications are easily created using the Chromium-based framework from official web pages without the need for development, the experts noted.

The popularity of the underlying source ensures high positions in the search results. The firm's software is distributed through popular free software platforms like Softpedia or uptodown, CPR experts noticed.

Attackers managed to go unnoticed for a long time due to the complex and multi-stage infection stage. The hidden module for installing the mining utility was activated a few weeks after installing the program on the computer.

The process of introducing malware was divided into six stages spaced apart in time, disguised as updates. At all stages, the installer removed traces in the logs, making it difficult to detect.

After running XMRig's Monero stealth mining tool, the malware activated it daily via scheduled tasks in case the computer's protection stopped it.

According to experts, the use of the XDR solution from CPR made it possible to detect a large-scale hidden mining campaign. The tool was able to identify each individual malware action, track it over time, and correlate it with a single attack.

In December 2021, cybercriminals distributed Monero mining malware via a torrent file containing a pirated version of Spider-Man: No Way Home.





AI finds 20,000 undeclared swimming pools in France.
August 30, 2022

The French tax authorities have used artificial intelligence to search for undeclared private pools from aerial photographs. As a result of the checks, the owners were issued fines totaling about 10 million euros, writes The Guardian.

Developed by Google and Capgemini, the system can identify basins in aerial photographs and check them against land registry databases. As a result of the experiment, she identified 20,356 unregistered objects.

According to regulators, any changes to property, including the addition of swimming pools, must be declared by citizens within 90 days of completion. A typical 30 sq. m involves an additional fee for the owner of about 200 euros per year, experts said.

The IRS is currently considering using the system to detect undeclared outbuildings, porches and permanent terraces.

“We are especially focused on extensions to the house like porches. But we need to be sure that the software can find buildings with a large area, and not a dog kennel or a children's playhouse, ”said Antoine Magnat, deputy general director for public finance.

According to the technical team of the tax authorities, they cannot yet distinguish the extension from an awning, terrace or tarp on the ground. The software error is 30%, they added.

In April 2022, it was reported that artificial intelligence mistook solar panels for swimming pools and also failed to find taxable outbuildings hidden behind trees or in the shade.

According to the developers, they are conducting tests to improve the technology.

“This is our second round of research, which will also allow us to check whether the property is empty and should no longer be taxed,” Magnant added.

A pilot project to identify undeclared real estate was launched in 2021 in nine departments of France. In 2023, they plan to expand the system to the entire country, as well as increase the number of detected objects.

The authorities expect that the technology will help increase tax revenue from the construction of private pools by 40 million euros per year.

In February, the US Internal Revenue Service stopped using the ID.me facial recognition system.

In the same month, American citizens were allowed not to use biometric authentication when receiving online fiscal services.





Leaked documents reveal the cost of hacking Android and iOS services.
August 30, 2022

According to the portal Dark Reading, not so long ago, a scan of a commercial offer put up by the Israeli developer of spyware Intellexa appeared on one of the online forums. The company offered a complete suite of zero-day exploit solutions designed to compromise both Android and iOS devices.

Spyware development is a fairly lucrative business that involves not only the infamous NSO Group with its Pegasus, but also other companies. According to the data received, last month an unknown buyer was offered to pay about €8 million for the provision of a "bundled" service for remote attacks on mobile devices using zero-day vulnerabilities.

Judging by the screenshot, the negotiations were conducted on July 14 - the information indicates that Intellexa offered the Nova Suite package with software for hacking mobile operating systems, including Android 12 and iOS 15.4.1, to an unknown counterparty.

Intellexa promised the possibility of hacking "with one click" using a browser version of the software from the attacker to infect mobile devices. The price of the transaction includes data analysis, access to a store with additional software and support services, as well as a one-year warranty.





The FBI named popular attack vectors for the DeFi segment.
August 30, 2022

The FBI has issued a warning about the most common vulnerabilities used by cybercriminals to attack DeFi platforms.

According to a report by analytics firm Chainalysis, between January and March 2022, cybercriminals stole $1.3 billion in cryptocurrencies. Of these, almost 97% are stolen from DeFi platforms.

The FBI identified three common tactics for carrying out attacks on this segment of the crypto market: initiating an instant loan (according to this scheme, they carried out an attack on the bZx DeFi platform in November 2021 with $55 million in damage);
using a vulnerability in cross-chain bridges (hacking the Nomad protocol in early August, more than $90 million was stolen);
manipulating the prices of cryptocurrencies by exploiting a number of vulnerabilities, including the use of a single price oracle (Deus Finance exploit in April 2022, $13.4 million stolen).

“Cybercriminals are looking to take advantage of increased investor interest in cryptocurrencies, as well as the complexity of cross-chain functionality and open source DeFi platforms,” the agency added.

Blockchain security companies note that the most dangerous vulnerabilities are related to the compromise of smart contracts.

“Smart contract code usually cannot be changed to fix security flaws. Assets stolen from smart contracts cannot be recovered and are extremely difficult to trace,” the Ethereum Foundation said.

For its part, the FBI recommends carefully studying DeFi platforms, protocols, and smart contracts for independent audit, as well as assessing the potential risks of investing in this segment.

Earlier, analysts from Elliptic reported that since 2017, the attackers have laundered more than $8 million through NFT marketplaces, which is 0.02% of the total trading turnover.

From July 2021 to July 2022, over $100 million worth of tokens were stolen.

The most popular tool for laundering funds from the NFT scam was the Tornado Cash cryptocurrency mixer.





Twitter has crashed.
August 30, 2022

Twitter has experienced a major outage. At the same time, the social network was available to owners of the mobile application, but users of the browser version for desktop computers experienced significant problems in many regions of the world.

Ironically, it was on Twitter that dozens of posts appeared with messages that the social network was not working. However, it was unhindered access from mobile devices that allowed users to complain about the lack of connection.

This is also evidenced by the DownDetector service, which collects statistics on complaints about failures in the operation of certain web sites. The problem has reportedly affected the US, UK, EU and other countries, regardless of whether users use a PC or Mac platform, and the #TwitterDown tag, according to some reports, even trended on social networks.

At the moment, access to Twitter has been restored. The company does not report the reasons for the failure.





Cryptocom accidentally transferred $10.5 million to a user instead of $100.
August 30, 2022

In May 2021, cryptocurrency platform Cryptocom accidentally transferred $10.5 million to a Melbourne woman instead of returning $100. It is reported by Ticker News.

The erroneous transaction was discovered after more than seven months as a result of an audit at the end of the year.

The platform sued for a refund. During the hearing, a representative of Cryptocom explained the error with the transfer by saying that in the payment field, instead of the amount of $100, the employee entered the account number.

However, before the company attempted to return the funds, the recipient, along with her sister, bought a luxurious mansion with a gym and a cinema in the suburbs of Melbourne.

The judge ruled to sell the property and return the remaining money to the platform.

In January, Cryptocom became the sponsor of the Australian men's and women's soccer leagues. The company noted that they were attracted to the deal by the interest of Australians in digital assets.

In March, it became known that the platform would become the official sponsor of the World Cup in Qatar.





Remaining Canon toner from recycled cartridges is being used to paint industrial asphalt.
August 30, 2022

Within the framework of "green" projects, the most unexpected components of high-tech equipment find unexpected applications. Although there is very little toner in the used cartridges, they do have some, and Canon has found a new use for it - when recycled, the substance will be turned into granules for use as a coloring and binder for asphalt.

Based in Virginia, USA, Canon Environmental Technologies is the company's largest cartridge recycling center. As part of the Recycled Toner Pellet project, the cartridges are first sorted by the type of materials used, then automatically disassembled and the plastic components are converted into granules to create new cartridges, the metal parts are transferred to the company's partners for further processing, and the toner has found a new use.

The toner extracted from the cartridges is also granulated in the so-called. Recycled Toner Pellets (RTP) and then used by Canon partner Basic Construction Company as a colorant and binder in asphalt. This is quite justified, since the toner itself consists mainly of microparticles of plastic, carbon powder and silica.

After several years of studying the safety of this formulation, the Virginia Department of Transportation has finally approved the use of pellets in Basic Construction asphalt, used in local roads, for example. After evaluating the technology, the construction company began purchasing 100% of the toner pellets from the recycling center.

However, this is not the first time attempts to find a new use for the corresponding waste have been made. In 2013, a toner-containing binder TonerPave was used as an experiment in asphalt used in Melbourne.





The timing of the implementation of support for satellite communications in the iPhone largely depends on the pliability of operators.
August 30, 2022

The closer the official presentation of the new iPhone models, the more actively discussed are the rumors about Apple's intentions to finally implement satellite communications support for emergency voice and text messages. As well-known industry analyst Ming-Chi Kuo explains, the success of this initiative is largely determined by the compliance of satellite operators, and not by the hardware capabilities of Apple products.

The expert in his new publication recalled that he expected this functionality to appear last year at the time of the announcement of the iPhone 13 family, and satellite communications were indeed supported by these devices at the prototype level, but in the end, Apple refused to implement it a year ago, because the business model of the service has not been worked out with partners.

Ming-Chi Kuo claims that at the development stage of the iPhone 14, the possibility of working in satellite networks was also actively tested. It is not a fact that it will be implemented in a serial implementation this year, but the relevance of the function has recently grown due to geopolitical conflicts and natural disasters, according to the author of the analytical note. Customizes Apple and profile activity of competitors. MediaTek has developed the appropriate components to realize the transmission of information from a smartphone to a satellite, and Huawei may introduce the Mate 50 smartphone in early September, capable of transmitting emergency text messages via the BeiDou satellite system. It is expected that Apple's partner in the implementation of a similar service will be the satellite communications operator Globalstar. The design of the splash screen inviting you to follow the broadcast from the Apple event also makes you think about it - the image beats the theme of the starry sky.





Elon Musk and Twitter will ask for more data from the company's former head of security.
August 30, 2022

The revelations of the former head of the Twitter division responsible for information security interested not only Elon Musk, but also the former employer Peter Zatko, so both sides of the litigation requested additional data from him that could be useful to them. In addition, in September, Peter Zatko will address the US parliamentarians.

The former head of information security at Twitter will have to submit documents to the justice authorities confirming his concern about the state of affairs in the company with the determination of the number of bots among the daily user audience. Musk's lawyers, according to Bloomberg, went to court demanding to request this data from Zatko last week, but confirmation of these actions appeared only this week. Peter Zatko stated that during his time at Twitter, the company's management did not pay enough attention to the accuracy of identifying questionable accounts, but at the same time they feared that information about their too high share, if disclosed, could damage the company's reputation.

Twitter management still insists that the share of bots does not exceed 5%, but Elon Musk is convinced that this figure reaches one third of the total audience of 230 million users. On this basis, he is trying to avoid entering into a deal to acquire Twitter assets at a price of $ 54.20 apiece for a total of $ 44 billion. Twitter representatives consider this position of Musk to be without legal grounds, since the company has repeatedly stressed that the data on the number of bots are approximate. . The court hearing in the case should begin on October 17 and last no more than five working days, so the parties to the dispute actively form the evidence base, sometimes involving the same witnesses to testify.





Singapore authorities decided to limit speculation with cryptocurrencies.
August 30, 2022

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) intends to develop the digital asset ecosystem while limiting “speculative trading in cryptocurrencies.” This was stated by the head of the regulator Ravi Menon.

“Cryptocurrencies have taken on a life of their own outside of a distributed ledger – and that’s the source of the industry’s problems. […] Cryptocurrency speculation is something that the MAS frowns upon and seeks to limit,” Menon emphasized at the Green Shoots seminar.

According to him, the task of the regulator is to create an innovative and responsible ecosystem of digital assets in Singapore. The official added that the agency considers cryptocurrencies “unusable as money and extremely dangerous for retail investors.”

“MAS sees good potential in stablecoins, provided they are securely backed by high-quality reserves and well regulated,” Menon added.

The regulator also welcomes wholesale CBDCs, “especially for cross-border payments and settlements.” At the same time, the head of MAS emphasized that he did not hear convincing arguments in favor of retail digital currencies of the central bank in Singapore.

“I hope this presentation made it clear that MAS's stimulating rhetoric regarding digital asset transactions and the restrictive stance regarding cryptocurrency speculation do not contradict each other. It is truly a synergistic and holistic approach to developing Singapore as an innovative and responsible global digital asset hub,” Menon concluded.

In July, the agency announced tighter regulation of cryptocurrencies in order to limit the risks of investors. Prior to this, the authorities promised to "cruelly and relentlessly" fight violations in the industry.

In August, Bloomberg sources reported that MAS sent out inquiries to crypto companies about their activities and assets.





Meta expands NFT integration project on Facebook.
August 30, 2022

Meta Corporation has expanded a pilot project for the integration of non-fungible tokens (NFT) to the social network Facebook.

“[…] we have made it possible for people to post the digital collectibles they own on both Facebook and Instagram,” the post reads.

According to the company, this will allow users to "connect their digital wallet to any app" to share NFTs.

In May, Meta launched a pilot project to integrate NFT into Instagram. Selected users were allowed to set non-fungible tokens as their profile photo.

In August, the initiative was expanded to an additional 100 countries.





VMware Introduces Blockchain for Ethereum Platform for Enterprises.
August 30, 2022

Despite the wide possibilities, the Ethereum platform has a number of drawbacks that make it difficult for large companies to use it, such as the lack of increased privacy, enterprise-class scalability and manageability. To address these gaps, VMware is launching the VMware Blockchain for Ethereum platform, now available in beta.

The VMware Blockchain for Ethereum Beta builds on VMware's enterprise blockchain platform, enabling enterprises to build, operate, and rapidly scale Ethereum-based blockchain solutions. With the ability to work with Ethereum, in addition to the existing support for a cross-platform DAML smart contract solution, customers have the flexibility to choose options.

The VMware CTO noted that the IT market is on the verge of a new evolution in application architecture: decentralized applications running on the blockchain will support new multi-party workflows. To enable enterprise clients to benefit from this evolution, the company created the VMware Blockchain for Ethereum. It is the first enterprise-focused Ethereum stack with built-in privacy protection features, he said. He added that the Bank of Israel and Infosys were the first to implement this VMware technology.

The VMware Blockchain Platform for Ethereum is EVM compatible, supports ZKP and standard Ethereum APIs, and popular tools such as Truffle, Hardhat, Remix, MetaMask, etc. Developers using Solidity will be able to deploy the VMware Blockchain for Ethereum Developer Kit both locally and in vSphere and AWS cloud environments.





WSJ: Tether will be "technically insolvent" if assets fall by 0.3%
August 29, 2022

A fall in the value of reserve assets by 0.3% could lead the issuer of the stablecoin Tether (USDT) to "technical insolvency". These conclusions were reached in The Wall Street Journal.

Such a “thin cushion of equity capital” threatens chaos in the market if Tether’s liabilities exceed its assets, the publication admitted. Journalists warned that under such circumstances, trust could dwindle, leading to a wave of people wanting to convert stablecoins to fiat.

According to the Tether Limited website, the organization's capital stock is estimated at $190.9 million with assets of $67.74 billion.

79.62% of USDT reserves are backed by cash, cash equivalents, other short-term deposits and commercial paper.

The remainder consists of other investments with a share of 8.36% including unspecified digital tokens, 6.77% in secured loans to non-affiliates, and 5.25% in corporate bonds, funds and precious metals.

In an interview with CTO Tether Limited, Paolo Ardoino predicted "substantial growth [of capital] over the next few months" in the form of a percentage of investments. He recalled that during the collapse of Terra, the company processed the conversion of 7 billion tokens into fiat (~ 10% of total assets) in 48 hours.

“I don’t think we present a systemic risk in the [crypto]system,” he said.

The top manager confirmed his intention to increase the frequency of publication of audit reports - now they will be released monthly, rather than once a quarter.

On August 19, the world's fifth largest auditor BDO Italia confirmed the provision of Tether.

The USDT issuer has confirmed plans to reduce commercial paper stock to $200 million by the end of August with a full disposal of these assets before the end of the year. For the second quarter, the position decreased by 58%, to $8.5 billion.

Earlier, Tether called the idea of ​​shorting USDT by hedge funds “categorically wrong”.

Prior to this, in mid-May, the stablecoin deviated from its peg to the US dollar, testing the $0.94 level. Subsequently, its rate returned to parity.





Lithium prices set another record, pushing battery prices up.
August 29, 2022

At the end of July, Elon Musk cautiously announced that the prices of materials for the manufacture of traction batteries began to decline, although he explained that he was not yet ready to reduce the prices of electric vehicles. Moreover, some sources expect prices to rise again in September. Prices for lithium, which is also used in the production of batteries, yesterday updated another record.

As Business Korea explains, by the end of last week, the cost of a tonne of lithium had risen to $69,259, while the previous record of $68,822 per tonne was recorded in April this year. Back in July last year, the price of lithium did not exceed $11,652 per ton, and other minerals for the production of traction batteries were much more expensive - $50,500 per ton of cobalt and $18,082 per ton of nickel. Lithium has now become the most expensive mineral used in the manufacture of traction batteries.

Fortunately, the amount of lithium in the average battery is not so high, and the situation is favorable for South Korean manufacturers in that they use less lithium than Chinese competitors. This means that the rise in the cost of lithium will have less effect on the costs of South Korean companies than in the case of Chinese manufacturers. According to experts, the rise in the cost of lithium was influenced by the adoption by the US authorities of a package of laws aimed at combating inflation. First, this country will provide subsidies to buyers for the purchase of electric vehicles for ten years, and the increase in demand has just warmed up the price of lithium. Secondly, lithium suppliers from unfriendly countries such as China will not be eligible for subsidies under this package, which further reduces supply in the US market.

It should be borne in mind that the heat in Sichuan province undermined the ability of local producers to rhythmically produce lithium carbonate, and for this raw material, this region of China controls 28% of the world market. Batteries based on iron phosphate (LFP), which Chinese manufacturers specialize in, have a higher specific content of lithium, while batteries based on nickel, cobalt and manganese contain lithium only in the electrolyte, and not in the cathode and electrolyte at the same time, as in LFP batteries.

If in March of this year the difference in price between LFP and NCM batteries of the same capacity reached 26%, now it has decreased to 11%, mainly due to the increase in the cost of lithium. Elon Musk has repeatedly urged companies from various fields of activity to switch to the mining of lithium compounds, since the billionaire compares such a business in terms of profitability with minting coins. The problem in supply chains is not the lack of sufficient reserves of lithium on the planet, but the limited capacity for its extraction and processing.





"Wolf of Wall Street" criticized high-risk cryptocurrencies.
August 29, 2022

Former American broker Jordan Belfort, known as the "Wolf of Wall Street", in an interview with The Crypto Mile compared small-cap digital assets to "junk" stocks.

“I don’t think there is any research you can do to protect yourself against these ultra-low-cap assets, except for a very early entry,” he said.

There is a lot of money to be made in this segment, Belfort said, but most buyers of junk stocks will lose their money.

He warned investors against acquiring such assets only if they are not willing to commit a certain amount of their portfolio to gambling.

The “Wolf of Wall Street” said that he considers Bitcoin and Ethereum primarily as reliable digital assets due to their strong foundation.

“I think it’s only a matter of time before […] bitcoin reaches maturity for it to start trading more as a store of value than as a growth stock,” he explained.

In 2018, Belfort said that retail investors in the first cryptocurrency were brainwashed. A few years later, he changed his mind, like many other investors and financiers.

In July 2022, The Wolf of Wall Street called Bitcoin a long-term hedge against inflation.

Previously, he criticized meme-cryptocurrencies Shiba Inu and Dogecoin for lack of value. In his opinion, the creators of these projects use an unregulated market and should go to jail.





CoinSwitch announces cooperation with Indian authorities after news of searches.
August 29, 2022

Cryptocurrency exchange CoinSwitch Kuber is cooperating with the Indian Enforcement Authority (ED), and the previous searches of the company's offices are not related to money laundering. This was stated by the head of the platform Ashish Singhal.

According to Singhal, ED is interested in “the operation of crypto platforms/exchanges.” He did not disclose details and stated that the company is "fully cooperating" with the authorities.

“Cryptocurrency is a new asset class. Being in its early stages, cryptocurrencies are not yet clearly classified in most parts of the world. Right now, the law (in India and elsewhere) is still evaluating whether a cryptocurrency is a “commodity,” “security,” “currency,” or “something new,” wrote the CEO of the exchange.

He added that the company is “committed to building a responsible crypto ecosystem that contributes to the Indian economy.”

Previous investments in the Bengaluru-based platform include Paradigm, Sequoia and Tiger Global. In October 2021, CoinSwitch achieved unicorn status with a $260M funding round led by Coinbase Ventures and a16z.

In the spring of 2022, CoinSwitch, among other Indian digital asset platforms, faced accusations of tax evasion. On August 26, Bloomberg reported searches in the offices and homes of the CEO and directors of the company.

In early August, it became known that ED accused WazirX, another major crypto exchange in the country, of violating currency rules and laundering money in the amount of $ 350 million.





This afternoon, NASA will launch the SLS lunar rocket into space with the Orion spacecraft - anyone can watch it.
August 29, 2022

The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is ready to conduct the first orbital flight of the giant Space Launch System launch vehicle and the Orion spacecraft as part of the Artemis 1 lunar mission. The launch of the SLS system will be carried out within a two-hour window.

The launch vehicle lifts off from pad 39B at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Everyone will be able to follow the preparation of the rocket for flight and directly its launch. The online broadcast will be conducted on the official website of NASA and on the YouTube channel of the aerospace department.

Although the Artemis 1 mission is uncrewed, it is critical to the entire US lunar program. A few minutes after launch, the SLS rocket will deliver the Orion spacecraft into outer space, after which it will separate from the carrier and go on a 42-day journey. During this time, the ship must automatically fly around the moon and return to Earth. It should be noted that in addition to the Orion spacecraft, the SLS rocket will deliver 10 miniature satellites into outer space, designed to conduct various studies.

If the mission is successful and the SLS system proves its viability in practice, a crew of astronauts will go on the next flight as part of the Artemis 2 mission on the Orion spacecraft. The Artemis 2 mission, in which the Orion ship with the crew will fly around the satellite of our planet and return to Earth, is scheduled for 2024. In 2025, NASA plans to launch the Artemis 3 manned mission, which involves landing astronauts on the moon. For this, it is planned to use the SpaceX Starship HLS descent module. Already, the aerospace department has selected 13 sites in the region of the south pole of the moon, where a landing can be carried out.





Honda and LG Energy Solution to build traction battery joint venture in US.
August 29, 2022

For Honda Motor Company, the US market is the largest in terms of product sales (30%), so it is concerned about creating the infrastructure for the local production of electric vehicles and components for them. As it became known this week, LG Energy Solution and Honda will start building a joint venture in the US next year to produce traction batteries.

For Honda Motor, this will be the first enterprise of this profile, its construction should be completed by 2025, when it can begin to produce serial products. The design capacity of the enterprise is not specified, but such LG Energy Solution projects involve the annual production of batteries with a total capacity of up to 30 GWh, which is enough to produce from 500 to 600 thousand mid-size electric vehicles. The partners will invest several billion US dollars in the construction of the joint venture.

LG Energy Solution is the second largest manufacturer of lithium batteries for the automotive industry, second only to China's CATL. Last year, Honda Motor bought a one percent stake in the Chinese battery maker, but the move was more about providing the company with the necessary infrastructure in the Chinese market, where Honda aims to introduce ten new electric vehicle models by 2027. From a political point of view, it is more profitable for Honda to cooperate in the US market with the South Korean LG Energy Solution.

In the next couple of years, Honda Motor is going to rely on General Motors' Ultium platform powered by LG Energy Solution batteries to produce electric vehicles for the US market. In addition to GM, the Korean battery supplier is working with local Stellantis in the US, also hoping to establish a joint production of traction batteries with this partner.

By 2026, Honda Motor intends to start producing electric vehicles on its own platform, and then it will need batteries from the Ohio plant. In this state, Honda already has a car assembly plant, but in the future, the Japanese company intends to build another plant in the United States that will specialize in assembling electric vehicles. Honda aims to build 800,000 electric vehicles annually in the US by 2030. By 2040, the company is going to completely abandon the production of cars with internal combustion engines, so the decision taken by the California authorities at the end of this month to ban the sale of new cars with internal combustion engines from 2035 fits well into Honda's plans.

At the same time, the Japanese company independently develops batteries with a solid state electrolyte; a research center in Japan is focused on these purposes. About $310 million will be spent on the creation of a pilot line, which will master the production of this type of batteries. It will begin work in the spring of 2024. It can be said that, unlike rival Toyota Motor, Honda is showing more determination in mastering the production of battery electric vehicles, while being skeptical about the idea of ​​using hydrogen fuel cells in passenger vehicles.





Rivian starts supplying R1S electric crossovers to third-party customers.
August 29, 2022

Technically, the young American company Rivian began deliveries of serial R1S crossovers back in December last year, but the CEO and CFO of this manufacturer became the recipients of the first two copies, and other copies were distributed among employees until recently. It was only recently that non-Rivian customers announced their R1S.

According to Electrek, ordinary customers began to share their impressions of receiving previously ordered R1S electric vehicles on the pages of the Rivian Stories profile community. At least, they were not connected with the automaker in any way, and the delivery dates of their cars generally coincided with the promises of Rivian, which in June indicated its readiness to start shipping customer crossovers by August. However, this period originally fell on March or April of the current year, so formally there was no delay.

The R1S crossover debuted in November 2018, so Rivian customers had to be patient to get a salable car. Soplatform pickups R1T began to be delivered earlier, in the secondary market their cost often exceeds the recommended twice. In the face of rising prices for raw materials and components, Rivian was forced to increase prices this year in March, and in August it stopped accepting orders for the most affordable configuration of its electric vehicles. In fact, without $75,000 in your pocket, cars of this brand are now difficult to approach.





Ericsson closes representative office in Russia.
August 29, 2022

The Swedish Ericsson, which produces telecommunications equipment, including for mobile networks, intends to close the Russian representative office by the end of the year with a general dismissal of employees, including those who provide technical support for the networks of domestic telecom operators. This is the first company of its kind to announce its readiness to leave the Russian market completely. Such a step may affect the quality of communication in the networks of mobile operators.

According to Kommersant, citing sources in the industry, on August 22, the parent company sent a notice to the Russian division, in which it announced its readiness to close it before the end of this year - the activity will be curtailed "as obligations to customers are fulfilled," and former employees will be provided financial and social support.

If in April the company announced the suspension of activities in Russia, and now it is leaving the market completely, competing Nokia and Huawei have not yet made such statements. Ericsson Corporation JSC was established in the country in 1994 and today its share in the domestic telecom equipment market is about 20%. It is known that the largest customers of the vendor are MTS and Tele2.

According to Kommersant, citing sources in the industry, it is possible that Ericsson will separate the support service into an independent legal entity with founders from among the top managers of the Russian representative office. However, no official data of this kind has been received from the vendor, and sources admit that mobile operators could have accumulated their own competencies to operate networks. In addition, they can take on employees who are downsizing at Ericsson.

The main problem is still the limited stock of spare components and the lack of new deliveries in the future. In addition, operators will not be able to receive new parts under warranty. According to a representative of Rostec, the useful life of telecom equipment is five to seven years, after which part of it must be replaced. Also critical is the lack of support and updates to proprietary software. Rostec believes that in the future, Russian equipment, which is being developed by the state corporation, may become an alternative.





Tesla began to actively hire specialists to develop engines for the actuators of a humanoid robot.
August 29, 2022

At the end of next month, Tesla intends to demonstrate a workable prototype of the humanoid robot Optimus (aka Tesla Bot), but this does not mean that all of its components and components are ready for mass production, which will begin next year. Now the company is actively hiring specialists who will help create the actuators of this robot.

If we turn to Tesla’s presentation a year ago, we can recall that the design of the humanoid robot Optimus provides for forty servos: six in each of the four limbs, six in each of their hands, two more in the torso and two in the neck. The company certainly has experience in the development of electric motors, but unlike traction motors, those used in the design of the robot must have different specifics and be of a stepping type.

No one expects significant dynamic characteristics from these robots. On outstretched arms, he will be able to carry a load weighing no more than 4.5 kg, and in a more suitable position - up to 20 kg. Without cargo, the robot will be able to reach speeds of up to 8 km/h. According to Electrek, Tesla's head of electric motors Konstantinos Laskaris posted a list of at least nine vacancies related to the development of servos and actuators for a humanoid robot. Most of the jobs are concentrated in Palo Alto, California, but there is also a vacancy in Greece, from where the head of this division of the company originally came to the United States. Tesla is challenging industry professionals to create electric motors that are optimized for energy efficiency, performance, cost and manufacturability.





In the United States, for the first time, a project is being implemented to place solar panels over water channels.
August 29, 2022

Last year, American scientists published a feasibility study on the benefits of building solar panels over water channels. Now it has become known that a Nexus pilot project is being implemented in California, in which solar panels will be placed over two spans of canals in the Turlok irrigation district to collect energy.

According to available data, California authorities have allocated $20 million to implement the Nexus project. The construction of new power facilities above the canals is scheduled to begin in October this year. Solar panels will appear over the 150-meter span of the canal in Hickman. Similarly, the panels will be placed over a 1.6-kilometer canal span in another part of the state.

“If it works for the first two miles of the Nexus project that we are implementing now, it could potentially spread to many places,” said Josh Wymer, manager of Turlock Water & Power.

The length of the California channels is about 6.5 thousand km. If they were all covered in solar panels, that would generate 13 gigawatts of renewable energy. It is noted that 1 gigawatt is enough to power 750,000 households. Thus, about 9.75 million families can be provided with energy. As of July 2021, there were 13.1 million households in California.





The logo of the Xbox Game Pass Friends & Family tariff appeared on the network.
August 28, 2022

A Twitter user posted on his page the logo for a new Xbox Game Pass plan called Friends & Family, which allows you to share the benefits of the Ultimate subscription with friends and family. Earlier this month, Microsoft started testing the new tariff in Ireland and Colombia.

In the current version, the cost of a new subscription in Ireland is €21.99, while the price of the Game Pass Ultimate plan is €12.99. By paying more, users can connect up to four people to the tariff, thereby sharing with them all the benefits of the Ultimate subscription. Microsoft hasn't made any announcements that only family members can share a subscription. Currently, it is only known that all subscribers must be located in the same country.

Microsoft offers an Xbox Game Pass or PC Game Pass subscription for $9.99 per month. None of these plans provide access to online multiplayer features. At the same time, users can opt for Game Pass Ultimate for $14.99, which will give access to the library for console and PC, as well as allow you to interact with games in multiplayer mode. Obviously, the new Game Pass Friends & Family plan will offer the same benefits, but for up to four people.





Creditors Mt. Gox denies bitcoin refund rumors.
August 28, 2022

Contrary to rumors, the trustee of Mt. Gox Nobuyaki Kobayashi has not started distributing funds as part of the civil rehabilitation process. This was stated by one of the creditors of the bankrupt bitcoin exchange, Eric Wall.

"Mt. Gox is not distributing coins - not this week, not next, not next. Source: I am a [platform] lender. The redemption system has not been launched yet. […] Currently, you can’t even specify where (to which exchange) you want to send your BTC and BCH,” he wrote.

Earlier, rumors appeared on the network about the distribution of 140,000 BTC between the platform's creditors, which will take place on August 28. This is probably due to Kobayashi's July statement - then he pointed to the "end of August" as the beginning of the "restrictive period."

Voll stressed that payments will be made in tranches, and no final dates have yet been announced. He added that some participants in the process sold their claims to Mt. Gox by Fortress.

This information was confirmed by another exchange creditor, the founder of the Metallicus project, Marshall Heiner.

“I am a lender to Mt. Gox and I can confirm that we are not close to receiving our bitcoins. Most people, like me, are not going to sell. Don't believe what influencers on Twitter tell you," he wrote.

Some have cited potential payouts to creditors as one of the reasons for the recent decline in the price of digital gold. At the same time, some community members are confident that the influx of an additional 140,000 BTC into the market will not be able to exert significant pressure on quotes.

The last day, bitcoin quotes have been moving in the range of $19,800-$20,280. At the time of writing, the asset is trading near $20,000.

Mt.Gox filed for bankruptcy in 2014. The civil rehabilitation process was launched in 2018.

A few years later, in 2020, Kobayashi filed a plan to recover funds from creditors in a Tokyo court, which approved the document. At that time, 137,891 BTC were stored on the Mt.Gox wallet.

Concerns have been repeatedly expressed in the community that the start of payments to Mt.Gox creditors will put pressure on the price of bitcoin, as many of them may start selling assets after receiving.





Google has released an SDK for developing applications for different types of devices.
August 28, 2022

Google is trying to simplify the process of developing Android applications that can be used on different types of devices. For this purpose, the company has created a new software development kit (SDK), which contains the tools necessary to implement the functionality of Android applications not only in smartphones and tablets, but also in TVs and even cars.

Ultimately, developers will be able to make mobile applications that can run not only on Android devices, but also on other operating systems, including Windows and iOS. At this stage, the new SDK will allow developers to perform three key tasks with their applications: discover nearby devices, establish a secure connection between them, and host applications on multiple devices. To enable connection of multiple devices, it is proposed to use Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or ultra-wideband communication (Ultra-Wide Band).

Google describes different use cases for the new SDK. For example, with its help, several users on different devices will be able to simultaneously order food in the corresponding application, thereby forming a common order without the need to pass the smartphone to each other in turn. Users will also be able to continue reading any article from where they left off when switching from a smartphone to a tablet.

At this stage, a preliminary version of the new SDK is available to developers, which works with Android smartphones and tablets. In the future, Google plans to expand SDK support to other software platforms, including Windows and iOS, but when this will happen is still unknown.





Tesla unexpectedly offered European customers a budget version of the Model Y for 42,000 euros.
August 28, 2022

The trend of recent months is the increase in prices for electric vehicles, in the secondary market since July last year, prices have increased one and a half times, as statistics show. In this context, a surprise was the appearance in the configurator on the Tesla website for European markets of a new version of the Model Y crossover with rear-wheel drive and a range of 455 km at a price of 42,000 euros excluding taxes.

Formally, as Electrek explains, in the Netherlands such an electric car costs 50,000 euros including VAT, but it is a whopping 16,000 euros cheaper than the most affordable option that has so far been offered to local Tesla customers. Previously, the crossover was available here only with a drive on both axles, and the power reserve of the most affordable version in the WLTP cycle reached 533 km.

As the authors of the publication argue, at the current conditional parity of the euro and the dollar, such a rear-wheel drive electric car would cost $20,000 less in the US than the most affordable Model Y crossover for the local market. In some European markets, the new Model Y version is even cheaper than the younger Model 3 version. The company is ready to deliver the new Model Y variant to Europe by December this year or February 2023.

This electric car has two most likely sources of supply. Either Tesla will assemble the most affordable version of the Model Y at a new facility in Berlin by December, or the Shanghai facility will be able to export them in sufficient quantities, provided they are equipped with cheaper CATL-branded LFP batteries, which are commonly used in the production of basic versions of Tesla in China. The second option seems more likely so far.

It is interesting that the company at one time refused to supply the Model Y Standard Range in the United States, since Elon Musk called the range of no more than 393 km achieved by an electric car according to the EPA cycle too modest, and sales were quickly curtailed. Apparently, on the European continent, such distances overlap with the ability to replenish the charge of the traction battery more successfully, so this version of the Model Y is offered to local customers. Moreover, in Europe, a more “optimistic” WLTP cycle is used, which ultimately gives 455 km of conventional cruising range without recharging.





Changes in US law will affect the activities of Samsung and SK hynix in China.
August 28, 2022

It is known that the American authorities are ready to provide subsidies for the development of production in the United States, provided that companies refuse to expand the production of 28-nm and more advanced products in China for a period of ten years. The largest South Korean manufacturers of memory chips are expressing concern about this situation, since they have large enterprises in China.

As Business Korea explains, it is still difficult to clearly understand how the new provisions of US laws relate to the activities of Samsung and SK hynix in China. The recently adopted package of laws CHIPS and Science Act does not specify whether applicants for government subsidies in the US are prohibited from producing memory chips in China using 28-nm technology, or they are excluded from this list. The US Department of Commerce is due to clarify at a later date, but in the meantime, SK hynix and Samsung Electronics are going to apply for government subsidies in the US to build their new facilities in the country.

Now Samsung Electronics produces solid-state memory in China in Xi'an, as well as testing and packaging memory chips in Suzhou. SK hynix has a RAM chip manufacturing facility in Wuxi and a solid-state memory manufacturing facility in Dalian, the latter from Intel Corporation, which, as you can now understand, made the deal very timely in light of its high interest in obtaining subsidies in the United States.

SK hynix risks being left without US subsidies any longer as its Wuxi plant uses lithographic standards of less than 20nm to manufacture memory chips. In the case of Samsung, the risk is lower, since the number of layers, not nanometers, is decisive in the production of solid-state memory. Another feature of the requirements of the US authorities is the need for applicants for subsidies to regularly inform about their investment activity and plans, which is usually considered a commercial secret.






Bitcoin falls below $20,000 again, analysts say it's good.
August 28, 2022

Bitcoin, the largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, fell 3.4% to $19,947.32 on Saturday, dropping below $20,000 for the first time since July 14, widening the year-to-date drop to 57%. Last week, Bitcoin traded in a range of $19,950 to $22,000.

In turn, Ethereum fell 5.5% to $1471.41. Solana and Avalanche fell the most, with prices down 6.4% and 6.9%, respectively.

Thus, Bitcoin, along with other cryptocurrencies, repeated the fall of global stock markets in response to the statement of Jerome Powell, who warned against premature easing of monetary policy. Speaking at the Jackson Hole annual economic symposium of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, Powell said the Fed must continue to raise its benchmark interest rate to curb inflation.

However, some analysts argue that the current situation opens up opportunities for buying cryptocurrency. For example, Mark Newton, technical strategist at Fundstrat, pointed out in a note to investors that Friday's drop is negative in the short term but suggests a buying opportunity in early September "as cycles remain bullish and suggest higher prices in November 2022."





The head of Intel bought a large stake in the company, while they fell in price.
August 28, 2022

Things are not going well for Intel this year. After its last quarterly report, which disappointed investors and, according to CEO Patrick Gelsinger, was "below the standards set for the company earlier," the value of the shares fell immediately by 10%, and since the beginning of the year their price has fallen by a total of 41%. And while the shares are cheap, the head of the company buys them.

According to a report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Gelsinger purchased 14,800 Intel shares last Wednesday at an average price of $33.86 per unit for a total of $501,153. This was his third purchase of Intel shares on the open market in 2022. For Gelsinger, it turned out to be the largest open market purchase of Intel shares since he took office in February 2021.

Under Gelsinger's leadership, the company has invested heavily in expanding manufacturing facilities in the US and Europe. However, the decline in demand for PCs had a negative impact on Intel and other chip makers. This is the reason for Intel's decline. but Gelsinger is sure he is on the right track. Perhaps, by buying shares, among other things, the head of the company is trying to inspire confidence in investors.

Last week, on Tuesday, Intel announced an agreement with Canada's Brookfield Asset Management to jointly invest up to $30 billion in two state-of-the-art chip factories in Arizona. As part of the deal, Intel plans to pay for 51% of the project, receiving a controlling stake.





CATL Develops M3P Technology to Increase Capacity and Lower Price of Electric Vehicle Batteries.
August 28, 2022

China's CATL has reported work on new materials for electric vehicles that will provide a 10% to 20% increase in capacity over existing lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries. This was reported by Reuters, citing company chairman Zeng Yuqun.

The new technology, dubbed M3P, will give electric vehicles a range of up to 700 km when the battery is fully charged, a company executive said during his speech at the World New Energy Vehicle Congress in Beijing. He added that the new materials will reduce the cost of batteries compared to batteries based on nickel and cobalt. Unfortunately, Mr. Zeng did not specify what metals are used in M3P batteries, and when their mass production will start.

CATL, whose customers include Volkswagen, BMW and Ford, is the world's largest manufacturer of traction batteries, accounting for more than a third of the global electric vehicle battery market. The company sees further prospects for its growth and an opportunity to increase its lead over competitors represented by LG Energy Solution and BYD in the expansion of production and new technologies for the production of batteries.

The Chinese giant recently announced Qilin technology, which will provide a 13 percent increase in energy storage density compared to standard Tesla 4680 cells. Geely's Zeekr electric vehicle brand will be the first buyer of the new battery model and will hit the market in early 2023.





Meta* Agrees to Settle in Complaint over Transfer of Cambridge Analytica User Data.
August 27, 2022

Meta* Platforms entered into an out-of-court settlement in a lawsuit in which Facebook* was accused of illegally transferring user data to research company Cambridge Analytica.

During the court session held the day before, Meta* announced its intention to settle the claims of the plaintiffs out of court. The company made concessions after its head, Mark Zuckerberg, was called in for questioning: he had to answer questions from representatives of the plaintiffs for six hours, Bloomberg claims. Facebook* users decided to sue the social network in 2018 when it was revealed that Cambridge Analytica, a company associated with one of the US presidential candidates, had accessed the personal data of 87 million people registered on the platform.

American justice regularly approved plaintiffs' requests for internal Facebook* documentation confirming that the social network administration failed to protect users' personal data. A lost case could cost Meta*, the company that owns the platform, several hundred million dollars. In addition to Mr. Zuckerberg, the once second person of the company, Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, who recently announced her intention to leave the company, was also wanted to testify. In court, her testimony was expected on September 20.

The day before, representatives of both parties petitioned the judge to suspend the consideration of the case in order to “facilitate the process of completing the preparation of a settlement agreement” and submit it to the court for preliminary approval.


* Included in the list of public associations and religious organizations in respect of which the court made a final decision to liquidate or ban activities on the grounds provided for by Federal Law No. 114-FZ of July 25, 2002 "On countering extremist activity."





US court upholds SpaceX's plan to put Starlink satellites into low orbit.
August 27, 2022

The US Court of Appeals upheld the decision of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), which previously approved SpaceX's plan to place up to 2,824 Starlink Internet satellites into low Earth orbit, although the company had previously planned to place fewer vehicles into the indicated orbit. The new plan was opposed by other satellite operators.

Initially, the FCC approved the launch of 4409 Starlink satellites, of which 2825 vehicles were to be located in 1100 and 1300 km orbits, and another 1584 satellites in 550 km orbit. However, SpaceX later requested permission to deploy up to 2,824 vehicles in low orbit, saying that this would reduce network delays and increase data transfer rates.

Last April, the US regulator approved SpaceX's new plan, but the initiative was opposed by other market participants, including satellite operator Viasat. According to opponents, the large-scale Starlink orbital constellation has a negative impact on the environment, and failed devices will increase the amount of space debris.

However, the appeals court sided with SpaceX, upholding the FCC's decision. The ruling, in particular, states that Viasat operates only one satellite, which is located in relative proximity to the Starlink constellation, and therefore the arguments about a possible collision are not substantiated.

Viasat, in turn, said that it considers this decision an obstacle to both space security and environmental protection. Another opponent of SpaceX's plan, satellite TV provider Dish Network, said it would monitor how the Starlink constellation affects the quality of TV services.





Businesses in Sichuan reopen after power cuts.
August 27, 2022

Initially, the authorities of the Chinese province of Sichuan planned to limit energy consumption in the region by disconnecting large industrial enterprises from the power grids for a period from August 14 to 20 inclusive, but as a result, the savings regime was extended until last Thursday. Local businesses are now back to life as the region's heatwave has passed.

Recall that the Sichuan power system is tied to hydroelectric power plants, which could not generate enough electricity due to an unprecedented drought caused by the steady hot weather. The air temperature exceeded 40 degrees Celsius, as a result, energy consumption in the residential sector increased sharply due to the use of air conditioning systems, and there was not enough electricity for all consumers. The authorities of the region in such conditions made a difficult choice in favor of infringing the interests of industrial consumers of electricity, ordering them to stop work for the period from 14 to 25 August.

As the Nikkei Asian Review notes, this past week's rains brought not only the long-awaited coolness to the region, but also the hope of replenishing water supplies needed to operate hydroelectric power plants. In the capital city of Chengdu, Foxconn and Toyota have not only begun to return to work, but the planned opening of a car show, which demonstrates new models of electric vehicles, took place. Instead of waiting until Thursday to start assembling cars at a local facility, Toyota Motor Corp. has been gradually rolling out production lines using diesel power generators in consultation with local authorities. Foxconn assembles Apple iPads in the city, and operations resumed as normal on Thursday.





SMIC will spend $7.5 billion to build a new facility in Tianjin.
August 27, 2022

Analysts' fears about declining demand for consumer electronics do not appear to be intimidating by the leadership of the Chinese company SMIC, which has committed itself to doubling production volumes by 2025 compared to 2021. A new SMIC facility will appear in Tianjin, the construction of which will cost $7.5 billion.

According to the Nikkei Asian Review, the new facility will be able to produce 100,000 300mm silicon wafers per month. When it will start its work is not specified. For obvious reasons, the enterprise will be forced to specialize in the 28 nm and coarser process technology. First, SMIC simply cannot obtain equipment with US-origin technologies suitable for the production of chips using the 14nm process and thinner ones - these are the updated requirements of US export control legislation.

Secondly, there is still a shortage of semiconductor components manufactured according to mature technical processes in the world market. In recent years, the bulk of manufacturers' investment has been in the field of advanced lithography, and mature lithography has been underfunded. According to manufacturers of telecommunications equipment, in this area, the shortage of components may continue until next summer. However, it is unlikely that the new SMIC enterprise will be put into operation by that time - the source does not say anything about the timing of the project. By the way, SMIC already has an enterprise in Tianjin that works with 200 mm silicon wafers. This region of China attracts the manufacturer with the presence of a special economic zone. It is assumed that the PRC authorities will assist in the construction of a new enterprise with targeted subsidies.





The US Department of Justice is preparing an antitrust lawsuit against Apple.
August 27, 2022

This year in the US, legal proceedings may begin in connection with Apple's accusation of violating antitrust laws. According to Politico, the US Justice Department's antitrust arm is in the "early stages" of preparing an antitrust lawsuit against Apple and plans to "file a lawsuit by the end of the year."

Politico clarified that despite the preparation of the lawsuit, the Justice Department has not yet decided whether a case against Apple will be opened. “It is still possible that the case will not be initiated at all,” the resource explained.

Currently, Department of Justice officials are collecting all the information necessary to file a formal lawsuit against Apple on charges of anti-competitive behavior. The DOJ investigation reportedly initially focused on the App Store, but now investigators have expanded their search for possible wrongdoing.

All aspects of Apple's business are considered, including the question "is Apple's control of its physical devices harming competitors other than app developers, and if so, in what way." Specifically, the investigation builds on public complaints from companies such as Tile and Spotify that Apple's control of the platform gives it an unfair advantage over other market players in Apple Music and AirTag.

Lawyers from the San Francisco Department of Justice are leading the investigation, Politico sources say. Recently, they have been reaching out to companies that partner with Tile about location-tracking technology on the company's devices, also making it clear that both the Apple App Store and the mobile phone operating system in general are under scrutiny from the DOJ.

According to Politico, the issue of filing an antitrust suit by the Department of Justice against Apple largely depends on the outcome of its proceedings with Epic Games. A federal judge ruled that Apple does not have a monopoly but unfairly limits the actions of third parties under certain circumstances. Both Apple and Epic Games have appealed the decision, with a hearing set for October 21.





Chinese server processors KaiSheng KH-40000 turned out to be noticeably slower than modern desktop Intel and AMD.
August 27, 2022

The performance data of the KaiSheng KH-40000 processors from the Chinese company Zhaoxin appeared in the Geekbench 5 synthetic test database. Formally, this series of chips has not yet been presented. It will include models with up to 16 cores. As the first tests show, against the background of its predecessors, the performance of KaiSheng KH-40000 has increased, but it does not reach the modern desktop processors from AMD and Intel.

Zhaoxin, owned by Via Technologies and the Shanghai government, has continued to use microarchitectures from Via (or more specifically, Centaur Technology, which was taken over by Via) in its products since the middle of the last decade. The upcoming KaiSheng KH-40000 data center processor series uses the CentaurHauls microarchitecture, which some technology experts say resembles Intel's Haswell architecture from 2013.

In Geekbench 5 tests, the 16-core KaiSheng KH-40000/16 and the 12-core KaiSheng KH-40000/12 were noted. Both chips operate at a frequency of 2.20 GHz. It is known that the older model has 32 MB of L3 cache, the younger one has 24 MB of L3 cache. The older model supports SMT technology, so the processor has 32 virtual threads. Based on the data collected by Geekbench 5, the Zhaoxin KaiSheng KH-40000/16 and KaiSheng KH-40000/12 models are very similar to the unreleased Centaur CHA processor that was previously reported. Nevertheless, there is a difference between the chips. It consists in half the number of cores in Centaur CNS, its lack of SMT support, as well as the use of a more mature technological process for the production of TSMC N16. The new KaiSheng KH-40000 chips are believed to use the more modern TSMC N7 process technology.

Although the new KaiSheng KH-40000 CentaurHaul architecture processors operate at 2.20 GHz, they are significantly faster than the previous generation LuJiazui architecture chips, which operate at a higher frequency of 2.70 in single-threaded performance tasks. GHz. This statement is true both for integer operations, where the new chips are 22% faster, and for floating point operations, where their performance is 75% faster.

Against the background of their predecessors, which are represented in the comparative test (the results are below in the table) by the eight-core model Zhaoxin KX-U6780A, the KaiSheng KH-40000 processors perform much better. However, when compared with any modern AMD and Intel processors, they lose outright. For example, their single-threaded performance is even lower than AMD's Bulldozer/Piledriver architecture chips from 2012.

Noteworthy is the very significant difference in multi-threaded performance between the 12- and 16-core KaiSheng KH-40000 models. In theory, a chip with 16 cores supporting 32 threads can indeed handle 2.66 times more threads compared to a processor that has 12 cores with 12 threads. However, as the results above show, KaiSheng KH-40000/16 is even faster: 2.69 times faster in Integer tasks and 2.84 times faster in Float operations. The older processor has only four physical cores more than the younger one, but at the same time its performance is almost three times higher.

It should be noted that Windows 10 and Windows 11 operating systems do not always work optimally with the task scheduler when using an unfamiliar multi-core processor. Therefore, the results of the 12-core model KaiSheng KH-40000/12, which was tested in Windows 10 Pro, may not reflect the real potential of the processor against the background of the older model, which was tested in a more suitable environment. But even despite this, the multi-core performance of the 12-core model based on the CentaurHoals architecture turned out to be expectedly higher than that of the chip based on the previous LuJiazui architecture. The latter not only has fewer cores, but also uses an older process and has less L3 cache. In operations Integer and Float, the difference in favor of the novelty was 40% and 78%, respectively. However, as mentioned above, in general, the level of performance of the KaiSheng KH-40000 processors and their predecessor Centaur CHA is very modest by modern standards.

For example, the multi-threaded performance of the 12-core KaiSheng KH-40000/12 under Windows is comparable to the eight-core AMD FX-8350.





SpaceX will change the world of mobile communications by connecting ordinary smartphones to Starlink satellites.
August 27, 2022

The head of SpaceX, Elon Musk, announced a project in which it will solve the problem of "dead zones" in cellular networks - the company will connect ordinary smartphones to satellite communications where there is simply no traditional cellular communication. Moreover, SpaceX is ready to do it all over the world, but will start from the USA together with the mobile operator T-Mobile as part of the Coverage Above and Beyond project.

It is noted that, despite the rapid development of 4G / LTE and 5G networks, in the United States alone, more than half a million square miles of territories remain without cellular communication. And on a global scale, up to 90% of the Earth's surface is not covered by a cellular network. The new initiative is designed to eliminate these "dead zones": users will be able to exchange data almost anywhere where the sky is visible.

The essence of the SpaceX project is the deployment of a new network based on SpaceX Starlink v2 (second generation) satellites in low Earth orbit, the launches of which will begin next year. Such devices will receive large antennas - 5-6 meters in diameter and almost any modern smartphones can directly connect to them.

In the case of a partnership with T-Mobile, mid-range cellular frequencies will be involved. The operator intends to provide customers with coverage almost everywhere in the continental United States, Hawaii, parts of Alaska, Puerto Rico and territorial waters, even outside of its network coverage.

In the future, SpaceX technology will be able to be adopted by interested companies on a global scale. The company is already inviting cellular operators from all over the world for cooperation. In fact, we are talking about a system that will change the world of mobile communications. The fact is that in most cases, to use the service for transmitting information via Starlink satellites, you do not have to purchase new equipment - an existing smartphone is enough. Moreover, users do not even need to perform additional actions, whether it is installing new firmware or applications.

True, there are some limitations. Throughput at the first stage will be only about 2-4 Mbps. And therefore, at first, partners organize the transfer of only text messages, including through instant messengers. However, in the future it is planned to add voice communication and Internet access.

At the same time, the system can function without access to the full constellation of Starlink satellites. We are talking about "intermittent" coverage, that is, say, users have to wait up to half an hour to send a message. One way or another, the system will solve the problem of lack of communication in remote and hard-to-reach regions. And this is extremely important in emergency situations, when performing rescue operations, organizing the transfer of information from various sensors, etc. Testing of the service will begin by the end of next year.

Starlink satellite communications will be inexpensive. Users of the most popular T-Mobile tariff plans will get free satellite connection. Satellite cellular will also be added to Tesla vehicles for emergencies. At the moment, the Starlink constellation has 2,800 low-orbit satellites. The average Internet speed it provides in the US and Canada is 90-100 Mbps.





Trustee Plus will represent Ukraine at Web Summit 2022 in Lisbon.
August 27, 2022

The Ukrainian cryptocurrency neobank Trustee Plus will take part in the large-scale IT conference Web Summit 2022. This was reported to ForkLog by representatives of the company.

The event will take place from 1 to 4 November in Lisbon. In addition to Trustee Plus, 23 startups from Ukraine will take part in it.

Neobank Trustee Plus is based on the principles of decentralization. It provides customers with the opportunity to buy, sell and exchange crypto assets without commission, including transferring them over the phone.

The annual IT conference Web Summit has been held since 2009. Its regular members are Jack Dorsey and Elon Musk.

In early September, the Kyiv Tech Summit hackathon will be held in Kyiv, the participants of which will create Web3 solutions to combat the consequences of the Russian military invasion of Ukraine.





Elon Musk: Tesla electric cars will be able to connect to the next generation of Starlink satellites.
August 27, 2022

Tesla founder and CEO Elon Musk said that the upcoming second-generation Starlink communications satellites have cellular antennas and will be able to interact with smartphones, and Tesla electric vehicles will also support satellite communications.

During a joint event with T-Mobile dedicated to cooperation with a mobile operator, Musk answered a number of questions, including the possibility of connecting Tesla cars. In the US, these electric vehicles have mobile connectivity to AT&T's LTE network, but using Starlink will take the technology to the next level.

So far, Musk hasn't gone into details about how Tesla's satellite communications will work. It is known that a satellite in its coverage area will provide mobile communication at a speed of up to 2-4 Mbps, and the channel width will have to be divided by all users of the corresponding technology. That doesn't seem to be enough for users on Tesla's premium plans, who normally have access to, for example, real-time video feeds from the car's cameras. In any case, a connection that, although not fast, but works “everywhere where the sky is visible” is better than none.

Over time, Tesla has reduced the connectivity packages that come with electric vehicles by default. If vehicles purchased before the end of June 2018 included the Premium Connectivity plan at no additional cost, adding the Tesla Premium Connectivity plan now costs $9.99 per month or $99 per year.

AT&T's recent 3G outage showed that older machines built before mid-2015 and not equipped with an LTE modem will have to upgrade for $200 to use the new standard, and the old no-subscription rates apply only to non-upgraded models.

For new Tesla electric vehicles or used vehicles, the Standard Connectivity package is offered for a period of 8 years, counting from the first day the new electric vehicle was delivered to the owner or from the first day it was started to be used (for example, in the case of a demo).





First manned flight of Boeing Starliner to ISS delayed until 2023.
August 27, 2022

Boeing and the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) have announced that the first manned flight of the Starliner spacecraft under the International Space Station (ISS) program has been postponed to a later date.

The CST-100 Starliner spacecraft developed by Boeing will be another ship for the needs of the US manned astronautics. It will operate alongside SpaceX's Crew Dragon.

The first manned launch of Starliner to the ISS was planned for December this year. However, now it is reported that specialists will need additional time to eliminate a number of problems identified during the test unmanned mission Orbital Flight Test 2 (OFT-2) in May 2022.

During this flight to the ISS, two of the spacecraft's orbital maneuvering and attitude control (OMAC) engines failed prematurely. In addition, the anomalous behavior of the VESTA (Vision-based Electro-optical Sensor Tracking Assembly) system, which helps with the docking of the device with the orbital complex, was revealed. An excessively high pressure was also recorded in the Starliner thermal control system.

Boeing expects to fix all problems within the next few months. The new date for the first manned launch of Starliner is February 2023.





Hackers break into LastPass password manager, but don't get to user passcodes.
August 27, 2022

The LastPass password manager was the victim of a hacker attack. This was told by the CEO of the company Karim Tubba. According to him, the attackers managed to steal only classified technical information that is not related to users.

The burglary happened about two weeks ago. Unidentified individuals were able to gain access to the developer environment through one of the compromised employee accounts. As a result, hackers stole part of the source code of the product and the proprietary modules used in it.

The company assured that the attackers could not get to the user passwords, so there is no need to change them. Mr. Tubba elaborated that the hackers could not obtain the users' master passwords because they are not stored on the system. The developers have also implemented additional security measures to prevent similar incidents in the future and have attracted forensic investigators to further investigate.

LastPass is the most popular password manager in the world. According to Bloomberg, more than 33 million people and over 100,000 companies use the service.





Eminem And Snoop Dogg To Perform BAYC Track At MTV Video Music Awards.
August 27, 2022

American rappers Eminem and Snoop Dogg will perform at the MTV Video Music Awards with the track From The D 2 The LBC, created in collaboration with the popular NFT collection Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC).

In the video of the same name, published at the end of June, the performers appeared as animated monkeys from the Otherside metaverse. The latter was created by Yuga Labs, the company behind BAYC.

In 2022, the organizers of the MTV Video Music Awards added the nomination "Best Performance in the Metaverse". It also features Justin Bieber, Rift Tour (with Ariana Grande) and Twenty One Pilots.

Snoop Dogg is a well-known collector's token investor under the pseudonym Cozomo de' Medici. The rapper has released his own series of NFTs, including a collaboration with Nyan Cat meme creator Chris Torres.

He also announced the creation of digital marijuana farms in the MOBLAND metaverse and the launch of an NFT dessert shop.

In January, Eminem purchased BAYC #9055 for 123.45 ETH (over $450,000 at the time of the deal).





NASA approves Blue Origin's Orbital Reef commercial space station project.
August 26, 2022

The International Space Station (ISS) has been humanity's main outpost in space for many years, but it is nearing the end of its lifespan. NASA plans to complete the operation of the ISS by 2031. To replace it, the Commercial Low Earth Orbit (CLD) Program was developed, which is funded from the budget of NASA and should stimulate aerospace companies to build new private stations.

Blue Origin's Orbital Reef project has been submitted to NASA to determine eligibility for the program this summer. The agency has positively assessed the feasibility of the project, and this is good news for Blue Origin and Sierra Space - NASA believes that the companies have the technology and experience to successfully build Orbital Reef. According to the initial schedule, construction could start in 2026, and the plant could start operating as early as 2027.

Unlike the ISS, the space on which was controlled exclusively by the space agencies of different countries, the new station will operate on a commercial basis. “Microgravity manufacturing provided aboard Orbital Reef has the potential to revolutionize any industry and could be a major growth driver for the US and global economy,” said Tom Vice, CEO of Sierra Space. Other project partners include Amazon, Boeing, and Arizona State University.

The Orbital Reef project provides for the placement of 10 astronauts in a volume comparable to the volume of the ISS. There will be advanced laboratories for conducting experiments in microgravity, production facilities and, of course, rooms for space tourists. Sierra describes the future station as a "multipurpose business park" in space. The photo of the station is just an early concept and the final design is still subject to change. After completing the approval process with NASA, companies can proceed to the design stage.

Space tourism is one of the main activities of Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin company, which already takes tourists to the edge of space on its own New Shepard spacecraft and rockets. In the future, versions of the rocket may be built that can reach low Earth orbit to dock with the Orbital Reef. Sierra Space is working on a space plane, known as the Dream Chaser, that could also reach the station - concept renders show several of these planes near the station. The Dream Chaser is larger than the New Shepard, with a payload capacity of around 5500kg. Boeing is also set to use its Starliner to transport crew and cargo for the Orbital Reef, though it's not yet clear if the ship will be ready anytime soon.





Tesla shares split - one security turned into three.
August 25, 2022

After yesterday's close of the American market, a split (split) of Tesla shares took place at a rate of 3 to 1. With the opening of the market today, trading in the automaker's securities will begin already adjusted for the new price.

Despite the fact that this measure does not promise any fundamental changes in Tesla's activities, the company's shares rose by 1.8% the day before. Shareholders approved a 3-for-1 stock split at their annual meeting in Austin, Texas on August 4.

In theory, the split means that retail investors' access to the company's shares will become easier as the company's securities become cheaper. In practice, firstly, the volume of investments of such shareholders is negligible in comparison with the assets of institutional investors (for example, pension funds); secondly, retail investors could trade shares of Tesla shares before that.

Tesla itself explained the initiative by caring for its employees: the company seeks to make shares available to every employee, and adjusting the value of securities will give them "flexibility in managing capital." Following the split, investors will receive two additional shares for each share they held as of August 17, 2022. The last time the split was made almost exactly two years ago, in August 2020, then it took place at the rate of 5 to 1.





Former head of Twitter security went from hacker to whistleblower.
August 25, 2022

Twitter's head of security, Peiter Zatko, also known as Mudge, fired in January, has spent three decades helping uncover cybersecurity risks. He has now become a whistleblower, sending an 84-page document to three major departments that criticized Twitter's negligent attitude towards the security of the platform.

The report could affect the company's financial and legal outlook, as well as the outcome of a lawsuit with Elon Musk, who does not want to acquire a dubious asset for $ 44 billion and accuses the management of the social network in an attempt to mislead him and other shareholders. In 2020, he was hired by the then head of Twitter Jack Dorsey - he attracted the founder of the service as an expert who does not change his own moral principles and speaks the truth even to the detriment of his own interests. According to Zatko himself, he accepted the offer after the platform was hacked by a teenager who gained control of verified accounts of companies and famous people.

Now the expert claims that he lost the opportunity to work on Twitter after Dorsey left the post of CEO: he told the members of the company's board that the confidential data of users is not protected as reliably as the official version says, and the new head of the platform, Parag Agrawal, fired him. “Mr. Zatko was fired from Twitter over six months ago for poor performance and poor leadership, and now he seems to be trying to harm Twitter, its customers and shareholders,” its vice president, Rebecca Hahn, announced the company’s official position. The CEO of the company did not give official comments, but contacted the company's employees by e-mail and also said that Zatko was fired for poor performance. Representatives of the expert say that he has no goal to cause any damage to the platform - on the contrary, he "put his career on the line, worrying about Twitter users, the public and shareholders of the company." The expert readily discloses any information that exposes both malicious hacking activity and corporate irresponsibility in relation to security issues.

The son of a chemistry professor and a mining specialist, Zatko grew up in Alabama and Pennsylvania, and in 1988 entered the Berklee College of Music (Boston, Massachusetts), even then possessing skills in hacking computer games and often preferring to spend time not in studios, and in the computer labs of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. After finally moving to Boston, he got a job at BBN Technologies, which had been developing security tools since the dawn of the Internet. In 1996, he joined the L0pht hacker community, whose members identified vulnerabilities in software. Then Microsoft suggested that experts first notify the developer about vulnerabilities, give him time to release software updates, and only then make the incidents widely publicized. The hackers agreed, thereby establishing a consistent disclosure model that is still relevant today.

Based on the L0pht community, the commercial firm @stake was created, which was approached for consulting services by large banks and software developers, including Microsoft. Then the idea arose to use digital signatures to identify legitimate programs. Later, Zatko joined DARPA, the Pentagon's innovation hub, where he created a fast-track grant program, thereby enabling lone hackers to help the government. Returning to the corporate sector, the expert worked on special projects for Motorola Mobility and Google, which later absorbed this company. He went on to secure the electronic payment startup Stripe. By the time he left, Stripe employees had hardware-based authentication keys to access data, and corporate laptops were going through a process of identification with privileges.

After a hacking incident in 2020, Dorsey lured Zatko to Twitter, where he began by scrutinizing the company's internal security concerns. A couple of months later, he faced the first serious problem - on January 6, 2021, the riots in Washington were coordinated via Twitter, and then-President Donald Trump's account was blocked. At this point, Zatko turned to the company's management, suggesting that they think about how to protect the platform from potentially malicious actions of their own employees. He was told that it was impossible to do this, and with a strong desire, a qualified worker would be able to complete the job. On the same day, he was contacted by the team of President-elect Joe Biden with an offer to lead the direction of cybersecurity at the federal level. Zatko thought about it, but refused - he decided that Twitter would be more useful.

However, he never fit into the Twitter culture. Some employees of the company spoke of him as an arrogant person who strove to go beyond his competence. He stayed on Twitter for another year, but then got into an argument with Agrawal about what the board of directors should know and was fired. Having lost his position, he decided to complete his work, and therefore turned to the state authorities. His report highlights what he considers to be dangerous omissions in the company, and he now proposes to solve these problems with the participation of regulators. “I want to finish the job for which Jack invited me, namely to make this place better,” Zatko himself explained his current actions.





Heather Morgan, defendant in the Bitfinex case, called NFT projects with her name a scam.
August 24, 2022

Accused of laundering assets stolen from the Bitfinex bitcoin exchange, Heather Morgan broke the six-month silence. She stated that she is not involved in any of the cryptocurrency projects.

“Any cryptocurrency or NFT project using my name or image is a scam that I do not condone,” she wrote.

Previously, Morgan positioned herself as a rap artist, as well as an artist specializing in collages, sculpture, painting and fashion design. The post published on August 23 is the first post since February 2022. Then the US authorities announced her detention.

Morgan, along with her husband Ilya Lichtenstein, became defendants in the case of involvement in the hacking of the Bitfinex exchange in 2016 and laundering the stolen 119,754 BTC. They face up to 25 years in prison.

Representatives of the US Department of Justice also announced the largest confiscation of digital assets in the history of the department - 94,636 BTC ($3.6 billion at that time).

On February 15, Morgan was released on $3 million bail. According to the court, there is no substantial evidence against her other than the allegation that she "allegedly received funds related to the case."

Online cinema Netflix has announced a documentary series about Morgan and Liechtenstein.





Brian Armstrong spoke about the reorientation of Coinbase's business.
August 24, 2022

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase is cutting costs and shifting focus towards subscriptions and services during the crypto winter. This was stated in an interview with CNBC by its CEO Brian Armstrong.

According to the results of the second quarter, the platform recorded a loss twice as high as forecasts. The company attributed this to a decrease in prices for digital assets - the trading volume on the platform amounted to $217 billion against $462 billion a year earlier.

Trading commissions generated 82% of net revenue. The remainder came from revenues grouped under the subscriptions and services category.

In an interview, Armstrong spoke about efforts to increase the share of the latter direction, as the cash flow from trading dries up during periods of deteriorating market conditions.

“We understand that trading fees will be an important part of our business ten years from now, even twenty years from now. I would like to achieve a situation where more than half of our income comes from subscriptions and services,” he explained.

The head of the exchange said that Coinbase is developing a line of products, including a staking service. The platform offers cloud services and the Coinbase One service. The latter is still in beta, but provides better customer support and other benefits.

Armstrong called for a move away from the US-centric approach.

“Looking back, we may have been pushing too hard on the requirements of US regulators. […] It may have been a mistake. We are changing that,” he explained.

Coinbase CEO recalled that the exchange has survived four bear markets and is well prepared for the current one. According to him, the current crypto winter will last 12-18 months. On June 14, it became known about the reduction of about 18% of the exchange's employees.

Armstrong did not rule out that in the future a new staff optimization may be required, however, the steps already taken were initially conceived as a “one-time event”.

In August, S&P Global downgraded the stock exchange's corporate rating from 'BB+' to 'BB', maintaining a 'negative' outlook.

Earlier, Coinbase agreed to cooperate with BlackRock. Clients of the latter will have direct access to digital asset trading through the Aladdin portfolio management system.





In China, they began to turn off charging for electric vehicles due to power outages - the problem is relevant for the whole world.
August 24, 2022

A rare summer in recent years has passed without climatic anomalies, and an unprecedented drought in parts of China has already caused power outages. The authorities of the affected regions of China limited the work of industrial enterprises, and the owners of electric vehicles were faced with the fact that many express charging stations were de-energized.

The worst drought in Sichuan province since the 1960s has already left residents of Chengdu and Chongqing unable to charge their electric vehicles at public express stations. At the very least, the NIO and Tesla charging station networks have been hit hard by the forced power outages. Chinese electric vehicle manufacturer NIO has begun warning on its app for finding charging stations that there may be problems finding functioning charging points, citing severe overloads in the region's power infrastructure due to high temperatures.

In these two Chinese cities, Tesla shut down more than a dozen charging stations, leaving by the middle of the month only two public charging points where it was possible to replenish the range of electric vehicles of this brand, but only at night, when the load on the electric grid is reduced. Representatives of the network of charging stations Teld New Energy admitted that in China, some public express charging points have to be turned off due to the requirements of local authorities. In some cases, the company encourages the use of charging stations at night or early in the morning when the load on the infrastructure is lower.

NIO, which also operates a network of express traction battery replacement points, is calling on home charger owners to help owners of electric vehicles of this brand, who do not have the opportunity to recharge their charge at home. The more fortunate drivers of NIO electric vehicles are encouraged to charge the batteries at home, and then take them to exchange points for subsequent distribution to other customers. A similar scheme will be valid until September 20, at least.

Considering that geopolitical instability is already forcing European consumers to limit the consumption of electricity and other utilities, the problem of charging electric vehicles may worsen in this region of the planet. Now the local electric car market is the second largest after China, and alternative sources of electricity are unlikely to cover the entire need of the European car fleet for charging capacities in the foreseeable future. Consequently, electric car owners in Europe may also be hit by the energy crisis, although initially they may have gained some advantage over ICE owners in the form of lower operating costs.





Tesla says its automation prevents up to 40 accidents a day due to pressing the wrong pedal.
August 23, 2022

The FSD Beta software distributed by Tesla for the driver assistance system of branded electric vehicles, in previous versions, was often accused of false positives of the automatic braking system, but experts say that branded automation prevents up to 40 accidents daily caused by the fact that the driver mixed up the pedals while driving.

The US agency NHTSA has already initiated an investigation into 127 incidents caused by the sudden unintentional acceleration of Tesla vehicles. The company, after studying the logbooks of the affected electric vehicles, came to the conclusion that all cases of acceleration were caused by erroneous pressing of the gas pedal by the driver. At the same time, the company announced that it uses the Autopilot system to prevent such incidents by blocking the driver's control action on the pedal if, according to a combination of criteria, it is erroneous.

Ashok Elluswami, lead software engineer for Tesla's Autopilot software, said in a recent interview that the brand's electric vehicles manage to prevent the consequences of up to 40 accidental accelerator instead of brake applications daily. It is as important to talk about it as it is about problems in software, because Tesla's achievements in this area are much less obvious than the failures that the press willingly discusses.





Former OpenSea employee accused of insider trading challenges court verdict.
August 23, 2022

Lawyers for former OpenSea head of product Nathaniel Chastain have filed an appeal against the indictment against him.

In June, a jury found him guilty of fraud and money laundering in an insider trading scheme on a marketplace.

According to the conclusion, Chastain pre-purchased the tokens using anonymous wallets and OpenSea accounts. Between June and September 2021, the top manager sold these works for two to five times the purchase price.

In the petition, lawyers stressed that internet fraud is associated with securities and commodities. However, NFTs are neither, they added.

Lawyers also argue that the authorities are not able to confirm the interpretation of crypto transactions as financial in accordance with anti-money laundering regulations.

“The government initiated prosecution using unreasonable application of criminal law to create a precedent in the field of digital assets,” the experts concluded.

In September 2021, OpenSea terminated its employment relationship with an unnamed employee involved in insider trading. This moment coincided with the departure from the company of Chastain, who was suspected of fraud. He was arrested on June 1, 2022.

Previously, Huobi accused the ex-employee of illegal trading. According to media reports, he allegedly set up a retail trading account in his father's name and provided a $20 million line of credit from the exchange for subsequent trading.





The James Webb Space Telescope captures the auroras on Jupiter.
August 23, 2022

The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has released two spectacular images of Jupiter taken by the James Webb Space Observatory. They capture the bright auroras, as well as the Great Red Spot, the largest atmospheric vortex in the solar system.

Both images were taken by the NIRCam (Near-Infrared Camera) camera, which is located in the structure of the space telescope. Because infrared light is invisible to the human eye, it has been mapped onto the visible spectrum. As a rule, the longest wavelengths are more reddish, while the shortest wavelengths are bluer. The scientists formed composite images using multiple filters mapped to different colors.

The images show that the bright aurora borealis extends over the north and south poles of Jupiter. Their radiance is most noticeable with the filter set to redder colors, as it also brings out the light reflected from the clouds. The Great Red Spot appears white in the new images because, like other clouds, it reflects a lot of sunlight. The images also show the faint rings of Jupiter and the planet's two moons, Amalthea and Adrastea. It is expected that the presented images will help astronomers get new information about the processes taking place on Jupiter.





Fujitsu to launch first Japanese-made commercial quantum computer in 2023.
August 23, 2022

Fujitsu, together with the RIKEN Institute for Physical and Chemical Research, plans to begin commercial production of quantum computers in 2023. Fujitsu was the first company in the country to be willing to commercialize such technology.

So far, the quantum computing industry has been dominated by companies like Google. At the same time, such machines are considered in the world as solutions of the latest generation that can have a direct impact on the competitiveness of the country and its national security. The Boston Consulting Group estimates that quantum computing will generate $850 million annually in economic value by 2040, thanks to the development of new materials and other disruptive technologies.

For development, Fujitsu and RIKEN established a research base in Wako City, Saitamo Prefecture in April last year, about 20 scientists are involved in the work. It is assumed that computers will be used to make accurate weather forecasts, in the development of new materials, medicine and many other areas. The company promises that computers will be able to buy various companies in the next fiscal year, starting in April.

It is known that Fujitsu began research in the field of new materials using the principles of quantum computing back in April, together with Fujifilm. According to the Nikkei Asian Review, Japanese companies have lagged behind foreign competitors in the development of quantum computers, so Fujitsu will be the first company to start building a "home" system using RIKEN technologies and superconductors with extremely low temperature cooling systems.

In 2019, Google made headlines when it claimed its quantum computer was able to solve a problem in 3 minutes that would take a supercomputer 10,000 years to solve. However, this claim was later refuted. It is known that Chinese tech giants have also achieved some success. In addition, the number of quantum computing-related startups has grown. However, the capabilities of existing systems are still limited. Google intends to commercialize its developments only in 2029, but so far there are still quite a few obstacles along the way.