Why You Should Care About Bitcoin


Money is going digital and it is impacting the biggest growth industry of the past 75 years

Bitcoin has attracted a lot of news and high-profile investors in recent weeks, while the media still focuses on how early buyers have made money and how authorities are onto its role in online narcotic sales. Less attention has been paid, however, to the underlying long-term potential of Bitcoin as a catalyst for innovation in global financial services by decoupling transactions from the networks previously required to ensure their execution and enforcement.

To really understand the power of Bitcoin, you need to think about it as 3 things: (1) a protocol, (2) a commodity, and (3) an ecosystem.

Continue reading @ Why You Should Care About Bitcoin — (Editor’s Picks — Medium)


Bioengineers introduce Bi-Fi | The biological Internet

Bioengineers introduce Bi-Fi -- The biological Internet

If you were a bacterium, the virus M13 might seem innocuous enough. It insinuates more than it invades, setting up shop like a freeloading houseguest, not a killer. Once inside it makes itself at home, eating your food, texting indiscriminately. Recently, however, bioengineers at Stanford University have given M13 a bit of a makeover.

The researchers, Monica Ortiz, a doctoral candidate in bioengineering, and Drew Endy, PhD, an assistant professor of bioengineering, have parasitized the parasite and harnessed M13’s key attributes — its non-lethality and its ability to package and broadcast arbitrary DNA strands — to create what might be termed the biological Internet, or “Bi-Fi.” Their findings were published online Sept. 7 in the Journal of Biological Engineering.

Using the virus, Ortiz and Endy have created a biological mechanism to send genetic messages from cell to cell. The system greatly increases the complexity and amount of data that can be communicated between cells and could lead to greater control of biological functions within cell communities. The advance could prove a boon to bioengineers looking to create complex, multicellular communities that work in concert to accomplish important biological functions…

Continue @ Bioengineers introduce Bi-Fi — The biological Internet.

HTML5 vs. Apps: Why The Debate Matters, And Who Will Win


HTML5 is a new technology that allows developers to build rich web-based apps that run on any device via a standard web browser.

Many think it will save the web, rendering native platform-dependent apps obsolete.

So, which will win? Native apps or HTML5?

A recent report from BI Intelligence explains why we think HTML5 will win out, and what an HTML future will look like for consumers, developers, and brands.

via HTML5 vs. Apps: Why The Debate Matters, And Who Will Win – Business Insider.

The Future Of Storytelling: Immersion, Integration, Interactivity, Impact


As technology becomes more advanced and more accessible across multiple platforms, it’s only natural for consumers to expect increasingly higher standards of creativity and engagement from content creators. However, with social media, apps, tablets, smartphones, websites, TV, etc. all part of the audience’s viewing habit, learning how stories should be evolving and how to make narratives work across platforms is a complicated matter. A new study offers some perspectives on what audiences may be looking for in their stories.

Research consultancy Latitude recently released phase one of a two-part study titled “The Future of Storytelling” that looks to uncover trends and audience attitudes about content. Overall, the study revealed that audiences are looking for a blurring of barriers between content and reality in a layered yet cohesive execution. The company asked “early adopters” around the world how they wanted to experience stories and asked them to reinvent some of today’s well-known stories accordingly (according to the company, early adopters are “people in over 10 countries who are more likely to own smartphones, tablets or both; who are already more likely to seek out content through multiple avenues; and who are more likely to be aware of the possibilities that the Internet and emerging technologies present”).

Based on participants’ responses the study zeroes in on “four I’s” that will continue to shape storytelling:

  • Immersion: Delving deeper into the story through supplementary context and sensory experiences.
  • Interactivity: Allowing consumers to become part of the narrative and possibly influence its outcome.
  • Integration: Having a seamless connection among all platforms being used and going beyond just replicating content on different devices.
  • Impact: Inspiring consumers to take action of some kind, e.g. purchase a product, sign up for a service, support a cause, etc.

Other findings from the study:

“Transmedia is more than media shifting:” 82% wanted complementary, not duplicating, mobile apps for their TV watching experience.

“The real world is a platform:” 52% consider the real world as another platform in which 3-D technology, augmented reality, and the like are expected to link the digital and physical.

Control: 79% expressed the desire to become part of a story, interacting with its main characters.

“So far, one of the biggest insights for us is that the emergence of new technologies means there’s a largely untapped opportunity to allow people to tie stories directly into their own lives—bringing narratives ‘out of the screen,’ so to speak, often through meaningful connections with characters,” says Neela Sakaria, EVP/Managing Director at Latitude. “We’ve distilled our findings down into a few key principles, and our hope is that content creators begin to embrace the idea that the desire for interesting cross-platform experiences isn’t as niche as some might think. Innovative storytelling isn’t just for fantasy fiction, and there are exciting new opportunities for news creators and even retailers to use storytelling principles to engage people more deeply.”

via The Future Of Storytelling: Immersion, Integration, Interactivity, Impact | Co.Create: Creativity \ Culture \ Commerce.

Memory and the Cybermind


THE line that separates my mind from the Internet is getting blurry. This has been happening ever since I realized how often it feels as though I know something just because I can find it with Google. Technically, of course, I don’t know it. But when there’s a smartphone or iPad in reach, I know everything the Internet knows. Or at least, that’s how it feels.

This curious feeling of knowing has settled over most of us. In a group, someone always seems to be “checking” something in the conversation, piping up with handy facts culled from a rapid consultation with the Great and Powerful Man Behind the Curtain. I’ve attended more than one nerdy party where everyone had a link open and we were all talking about things we didn’t know until we were prompted by our conversation to look them up.

Who knew that the king of hearts was the only one without a mustache? Well, I did — as soon as I checked. The Web is always there, an ever present cloud of intelligence…

via Memory and the Cybermind – NYTimes.com.

Consortium of Colleges Takes Online Education to New Level

free ed

As part of a seismic shift in online learning that is reshaping higher education, Coursera, a year-old company founded by two Stanford University computer scientists, will announce on Tuesday that a dozen major research universities are joining the venture. In the fall, Coursera will offer 100 or more free massive open online courses, or MOOCs, that are expected to draw millions of students and adult learners globally…

via Consortium of Colleges Takes Online Education to New Level – NYTimes.com.

Marissa Mayer Is The New CEO Of Yahoo – Business Insider

Marissa Mayer is the new CEO Of Yahoo.

She quit Google today and starts her new job tomorrow.

Mayer was Google’s first woman engineer.

She managed its search product for years. She also led development of iGoogle, Google News, and Gmail…

via Marissa Mayer Is The New CEO Of Yahoo – Business Insider.

Leap second bug: Reddit, Mozilla, and more experience technical issues

More than a decade after the Y2K scare, a single extra second has caused problems for a number of notable web companies. The leap second — a one-second adjustment added to atomic clocks to synchronize it with clocks based on the Earth’s rotation — occurred on Saturday night and caught a number of companies unaware…

Leap second bug: Reddit, Mozilla, and more experience technical issues | The Verge.

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