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Archive for 1. Juli 2018

Time Split to the Nanosecond Is Precisely What Wall Street Wants

Posted by hkarner - 1. Juli 2018

Date: 30-06-2018
Source: The New York Times By John Markoff

SAN FRANCISCO — Computer scientists at Stanford University and Google have created technology that can track time down to 100 billionths of a second. It could be just what Wall Street is looking for.

System engineers at Nasdaq, the New York-based stock exchange, recently began testing an algorithm and software that they hope can synchronize a giant network of computers with that nanosecond precision. They say they have built a prototype, and are in the process of deploying a bigger version.

For an exchange like Nasdaq, such refinement is essential to accurately order the millions of stock trades that are placed on their computer systems every second.

Ultimately, this is about money. With stock trading now dominated by computers that make buying and selling decisions and execute them with blazing speed, keeping that order also means protecting profits. So-called high frequency trading firms place trades in a fraction of a second, sometimes in a bet that they can move faster than bigger competitors. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Die transatlantische Bruchstelle

Posted by hkarner - 1. Juli 2018

Dominique Moisi is Senior Counselor at the Institut Montaigne in Paris. He is the author of La Géopolitique des Séries ou le triomphe de la peur.

PARIS – Der Nationalpark Thingvellir, der 50 Kilometer östlich von Reykjavik liegt, ist Islands wichtigste historische Stätte. Dort haben nicht nur die Wikinger im Jahr 930 ihr erstes demokratisches Parlament gegründet, sondern auch die Isländer 1944 ihre Unabhängigkeit von Dänemark erklärt. Außerdem liegt der Park auf einer enormen geologischen Bruchstelle, wo die kleine Hreppafleki-Platte zwischen den tektonischen Platten Nordamerikas und Eurasiens einen engen Riss bildet. In der momentanen geopolitischen Lage kann dies eine perfekte Symbolik bilden.

Zweifellos klafft auch zwischen den Vereinigten Staaten und Europa ein Graben. Die Hreppafleki-Platte kann für China stehen, das seine Position in der obersten Riege der Weltmächte immer wieder behauptet – eine Situation, auf die die USA und Europa keine gemeinsame Antwort zu haben scheinen. Oder vielleicht spiegelt die Hreppafleki-Platte eher US-Präsident Donald Trump wider, dessen wiederholte Provokationen – auch gegenüber China – die transatlantische Freundschaft erschöpft und Amerikas Rolle in der Welt untergraben haben.

Der Kalte Krieg von 1945 bis 1989 war durch eine bipolare Weltordnung geprägt, in der die Stabilität von einem Gleichgewicht der nuklearen Bedrohung abhing. Nach 1989 entstand eine hoffnungsvollere Ordnung unter der Leitung der hegemonischen USA, auch wenn sie immer noch durch Kräfte wie den internationalen Terrorismus destabilisiert wurde. Aber jetzt sind wir in eine neue Phase eingetreten, in der die USA immer mehr Normen verletzt und sich damit vom Rest der Welt aktiv entfremdet. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Can Multilateralism Adapt?

Posted by hkarner - 1. Juli 2018

Jean Pisani-Ferry, a professor at the Hertie School of Governance (Berlin) and Sciences Po (Paris), holds the Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa chair at the European University Institute and is a Mercator senior fellow at Bruegel, a Brussels-based think tank.

Global governance requires rules, because flexibility and goodwill alone cannot tackle the hardest shared problems. With multilateralism under attack, the narrow path ahead is to determine, on a case-by-case basis, the minimum requirements of effective collective action, and to forge agreement on reforms that fulfill these conditions.

FLORENCE – Rewind to the late 1990s. After an eight-decade-long hiatus, the global economy was being reunified. Economic openness was the order of the day. Finance was being liberalized. The nascent Internet would soon give everyone on the planet equal access to information. To manage ever-growing interdependence, new international institutions were developed. The World Trade Organization was brought to life. A binding climate agreement, the Kyoto Protocol, had just been finalized.

The message was clear: globalization was not just about liberalizing flows of goods, services and capital but about establishing the rules and institutions required to steer markets, foster cooperation, and deliver global public goods. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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How China Is Trying to Invent the Future as a Science Superpower

Posted by hkarner - 1. Juli 2018

Date: 30-06-2018
Source: Scientific American

In its quest for scientific achievement, China’s research and development spending has grown rapidly over the past two decades, making it second only to the United States

The following essay is reprinted with permission from The Conversation, an online publication covering the latest research.

Genetic engineering, the search for dark matter, quantum computing and communications, artificial intelligence, brain science—the list of potentially disruptive research goes on. Each has significant implications for future industries, defense technologies and ethical understandings of what it means to be human.

And, increasingly, the notable achievements in these fields are coming not from the great centers of science in the West, but Beijing, Shanghai, Hefei, Shenzhen and a number of other Chinese cities that make up China’s extensive research system. Inevitably, the question arises: How much of the future is being invented in Chinese labs?

The current trade negotiations between China and United States have brought China’s rapidly developing technological capabilities into clearer focus. As China aims to achieve leadership in emerging key technologies, the U.S. is quick to attribute much of Chinese progress to the theft of American intellectual property and forced technology transfers. But, as someone who has followed China’s scientific development for years, I’ve seen dramatic improvements in China’s own innovative capacity, along with the science base needed for success in the knowledge-intensive industries it seeks to master. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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EU’s Migrant Deal Reflects Ascendance of Nativist Parties

Posted by hkarner - 1. Juli 2018

Date: 30-06-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal

Agreement to detain migrants gives Germany’s Merkel respite but marks big shift from policies she embodied

German Chancellor Angela Merkel talking with Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz.

BRUSSELS—Europe’s leaders agreed on Friday to start holding some migrants in detention camps, as politicians including Germany’s once indomitable Chancellor Angela Merkel face a growing political backlash to her 2015 decision to open the continent’s doors to those fleeing conflict and poverty.

The heads of European Union governments endorsed the idea, which many had recently dismissed as xenophobic and inhumane, after nightlong negotiations that endorsed a tougher approach promoted by anti-immigrant governments in Italy and Austria.

For Ms. Merkel, abandoning her long commitment to more-open borders was the price of political survival. When the EU’s longest-serving national leader allowed more than one million asylum seekers to enter the EU three years ago, she unwittingly unleashed broad-based anger toward migrants.

Since then, backlash against outsiders helped drive Britain’s vote to leave the EU and recently helped win elections for antiestablishment or nativist parties in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovenia, as well as in Rome and Vienna. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The young Austrian leader sharing power with the far right

Posted by hkarner - 1. Juli 2018

Date: 30-06-2018
Source: BBC

Sebastian Kurz won the race to become Austria’s chancellor last year aged 31

„Sebastian Kurz is a rock star,“ according to the US ambassador to Germany.

In a recent interview shortly after his arrival in Berlin, Richard Grenell told the alt-right Breitbart News website that he was „a big fan“ of the youthful Austrian chancellor from the conservative People’s Party.

He is not the only one.

Mr Kurz’s harsh anti-migrant message has proved to be a winner at the ballot box in Austria – and now he is taking it to the European level.

The millennial chancellor, 31, with his slicked-back hair and sharp suits, who formed a coalition with the far-right Freedom Party, says fighting illegal migration is a top priority for Austria’s presidency of the EU, which starts in July.

Mr Kurz wants to shift the focus from the controversial issue of relocating asylum seekers inside the EU to defending Europe’s outer borders, an area where he says there is much more agreement among EU countries.

He is in favour of setting up asylum-processing centres outside the EU and of a much tougher mandate for the EU’s border agency, Frontex. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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