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Posts Tagged ‘Technology Review’

Explainer: What is post-quantum cryptography?

Posted by hkarner - 18. Juli 2019

Date: 17-07-2019
Source: Technology Review by Martin Giles

The race is on to create new ways to protect data and communications from the threat posed by super-powerful quantum computers.

This is the third in a series of explainers on quantum technology. The two others cover quantum computing and quantum communication.

Few of us give much thought to the tiny padlock symbol that appears in our web browsers every time we use an e-commerce site, send and receive emails, or check our bank or credit card accounts. But it’s a signal that the online services are using HTTPS, a web protocol that encrypts the data we send across the internet and the responses we receive. This and other forms of encryption protect all kinds of electronic communications, as well as things like passwords, digital signatures, and health records.

Quantum computers could undermine these cryptographic defenses. The machines aren’t powerful enough to do this today, but they are evolving fast. It’s possible that in a little more than a decade—and perhaps even sooner—these machines could be a threat to widely used cryptography methods. That’s why researchers and security firms are racing to develop new approaches to cryptography that will be able to withstand future quantum attacks mounted by hackers.

How does digital encryption work? Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The out-there AI ideas designed to keep the US ahead of China

Posted by hkarner - 9. März 2019

Date: 08-03-2019
Source: Technology Review by Will Knight

China is developing artificial intelligence on an unparalleled scale, but the US aims to beat it by inventing the next big ideas.

When it comes to artificial intelligence, the United States has a tradition of betting on crazy ideas.

This week, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) showcased projects that are part of a new five-year, $2 billion plan to foster the next round of out-there concepts that will bring about new advances in AI. These include efforts to give machines common sense; to have them learn faster, using less data; and to create chips that reconfigure themselves to unlock new AI capabilities.

Speaking at the event, Michael Kratsios, deputy assistant to the president for technology policy at the White House, said the agency’s efforts are a key part of the government’s plan to stay ahead in AI. “This administration supports DARPA’s commitment, and shares its intense interest in developing and applying artificial intelligence,” Kratsios said.

President Trump signed an executive order last month to launch the US government’s AI strategy, called the American AI Initiative. Kratsios, who is also the government’s deputy chief technology officer, has been the driving force behind White House strategy on AI. The American AI Initiative calls for more funding  and will make data and computing resources available to AI researchers. “DARPA has a long history of making early investments in fundamental research that has had amazing benefits,” Kratsios said. “[It] is building on this success in artificial-intelligence research.” Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Intelligent Machines – Ten recent low-tech inventions that have changed the world

Posted by hkarner - 2. März 2019

Technologies don’t have to be cutting edge to make a profound difference in people’s lives.

Oral rehydration salts

By the early 1990s, diarrheal diseases were killing some 5 million children under the age of five every year. That number is down to about 1.5 million, thanks to oral rehydration salts—a mixture of salt and sugar that can be dissolved in water and administered at home. Zinc is sometimes added to the mix to reduce the severity and duration of diarrhea. This simple innovation has perhaps saved more lives at lower cost than any other.

Cheap, low-power irrigation

Irrigation accounts for the bulk of fresh-­water use in most countries—something like three quarters of the total. Drip irrigation uses half as much water as conventional irrigation and is half again as productive. But it’s expensive and usually requires electrical power. The GEAR lab at MIT has developed low-pressure solar-powered drip irrigation systems that can deliver the benefits at much lower cost.

DC-power microgrid

Solar cells can provide cheap, decentralized electricity. But if you’re plugging them into conventional devices on a normal household grid, there’s a lot of overhead involved in converting the direct current they produce into alternating current and back again. A well-designed small DC network can save a substantial amount of energy by eliminating this need. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Five emerging cyber-threats to worry about in 2019

Posted by hkarner - 11. Januar 2019

Date: 10-01-2019
Source: Technology Review

The risks include AI-powered deepfake videos and the hacking of blockchain-powered smart contracts.

Last year was full of cybersecurity disasters, from the revelation of security flaws in billions of microchips to massive data breaches and attacks using malicious software that locks down computer systems until a ransom is paid, usually in the form of an untraceable digital currency.

We’re going to see more mega-breaches and ransomware attacks in 2019. Planning to deal with these and other established risks, like threats to web-connected consumer devices and critical infrastructure such as electrical grids and transport systems, will be a top priority for security teams. But cyber-defenders should be paying attention to new threats, too. Here are some that should be on watch lists: Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Quantum computers pose a security threat that we’re still totally unprepared for

Posted by hkarner - 7. Dezember 2018

Date: 06-12-2018
Source: Technology Review by  Martin Giles

Some US experts think it could take at least 20 years to get quantum-proof encryption widely deployed.

The world relies on encryption to protect everything from credit card transactions to databases holding health records and other sensitive information. A new report from the US National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine says we need to speed up preparations for the time when super-powerful quantum computers can crack conventional cryptographic defenses.

The experts who produced the report, which was released today, say widespread adoption of quantum-resistant cryptography “will be a long and difficult process” that “probably cannot be completed in less than 20 years.” It’s possible that highly capable quantum machines will appear before then, and if hackers get their hands on them, the result could be a security and privacy nightmare.

Today’s cyberdefenses rely heavily on the fact that it would take even the most powerful classical supercomputers almost unimaginable amounts of time to unravel the cryptographic algorithms that protect our data, computer networks, and other digital systems. But computers that harness quantum bits, or qubits, promise to deliver exponential leaps in processing power that could break today’s best encryption. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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AI is not “magic dust” for your company, says Google’s Cloud AI boss

Posted by hkarner - 10. November 2018

Essential to understand prerequisites and impact of AI. Google knows whom to recruit for leadership positions ! (hfk)  

Date: 10-11-2018
Source: Technology Review by Will Knight

Andrew Moore says getting the technology to work in businesses is a huge challenge.

Andrew Moore is the new head of Google’s Cloud AI business, a unit that is striving to make machine-learning tools and techniques more accessible and useful for ordinary businesses.

To that end, his team announced several new tools today. These include AI Hub, a modular framework for connecting different machine-learning components, and Kubeflow Pipelines, software that makes machine-learning projects more portable.

Efforts to make AI more accessible are likely to define the technology’s impact. They will also prove very important to the future of companies like Google.

Moore spoke with MIT Technology Review’s senior editor for AI, Will Knight, ahead of today’s announcement.

Like you, lots of AI researchers are being sucked into big companies. Isn’t that bad for AI?

It’s healthy for the world to have people who are thinking about 25 years into the future—and people who are saying “What can we do right now?” Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The US military wants to teach AI some basic common sense

Posted by hkarner - 13. Oktober 2018

Date: 12-10-2018
Source: Technology Review

Even the best AI programs still make stupid mistakes. So DARPA is launching a competition to remedy the field’s most glaring flaw.

Wherever artificial intelligence is deployed, you will find it has failed in some amusing way. Take the strange errors made by translation algorithms that confuse having someone for dinner with, well, having someone for dinner.

But as AI is used in ever more critical situations, such as driving autonomous cars, making medical diagnoses, or drawing life-or-death conclusions from intelligence information, these failures will no longer be a laughing matter. That’s why DARPA, the research arm of the US military, is addressing AI’s most basic flaw: it has zero common sense.

“Common sense is the dark matter of artificial intelligence,” says Oren Etzioni, CEO of the Allen Institute for AI, a research nonprofit based in Seattle that is exploring the limits of the technology. “It’s a little bit ineffable, but you see its effects on everything.” Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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For safety’s sake, we must slow innovation in internet-connected things

Posted by hkarner - 8. September 2018

Date: 07-09-2018
Source: Technology Review by Martin Giles

That’s the view of security expert Bruce Schneier, who fears lives will be lost in a cyber disaster unless governments act swiftly.

Smart gadgets are everywhere. The chances are you have them in your workplace, in your home, and perhaps on your wrist. According to an estimate from research firm Gartner, there will be over 11 billion internet-connected devices (excluding smartphones and computers) in circulation worldwide this year, almost double the number just a couple of years ago.

Many billions more will come online soon. Their connectivity is what makes them so useful, but it’s also a cybersecurity nightmare. Hackers have already shown they can compromise everything from connected cars to medical devices, and warnings are getting louder that security is being shortchanged in the stampede to bring products to market. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The “neuropolitics” consultants who hack voters’ brains

Posted by hkarner - 17. August 2018

Date: 16-08-2018
Source: Technology Review by Elizabeth Svoboda

These experts say they can divine political preferences you can’t express from signals you don’t know you’re producing.

Maria Pocovi slides her laptop over to me with the webcam switched on. My face stares back at me, overlaid with a grid of white lines that map the contours of my expression. Next to it is a shaded window that tracks six “core emotions”: happiness, surprise, disgust, fear, anger, and sadness. Each time my expression shifts, a measurement bar next to each emotion fluctuates, as if my feelings were an audio signal. After a few seconds, a bold green word flashes in the window: ANXIETY. When I look back at Pocovi, I get the sense she knows exactly what I’m thinking with one glance.

Petite with a welcoming smile, Pocovi, the founder of Emotion Research Lab in Valencia, Spain, is a global entrepreneur par excellence. When she comes to Silicon Valley, she doesn’t even rent an office—she just grabs a table here at the Plug and Play coworking space in Sunnyvale, California. But the technology she’s showing me is at the forefront of a quiet political revolution. Campaigns around the world are employing Emotion Research Lab and other marketers versed in neuroscience to penetrate voters’ unspoken feelings. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The World Economic Forum warns that AI may destabilize the financial system

Posted by hkarner - 16. August 2018

Date: 16-08-2018
Source: Technology Review

Increased use of machine learning and cloud services could make the financial world more vulnerable.

Artificial intelligence will reshape the world of finance over the next decade or so by automating investing and other services—but it could also introduce troubling systematic weaknesses and risks, according to a new report from the World Economic Forum (WEF).

Compiled through interviews with dozens of leading financial experts and industry leaders, the report concludes that artificial intelligence will disrupt the industry by allowing early adopters to outmaneuver competitors. It also suggests that the technology will create more convenient products for consumers, such as sophisticated tools for managing personal finances and investments.

But most notably, the report points to the potential for big financial institutions to build machine-learning-based services that live in the cloud and are accessed by other institutions. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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