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Real Cheese From A Lab, No Cow Necessary

Originally posted on TechCrunch:

Vegans who miss the creamy taste of real cheese, rejoice! A group of biohackers from Counter Culture Labs in Oakland, Calif., and BioCurious in Sunnyvale, Calif., are using baker’s yeast to produce the world’s first cheese that did not originate from milk in the udder of a cow.

Most vegan cheese is soy or nut-based and doesn’t taste much like cheese at all. If you’ve been vegan for awhile you may not remember the creamy, salty, delicious taste of a good sharp cheddar or the pungent stink of Limburger or Brie. That’s all about to change for you, thanks to science.

By now you may have some questions as to how this is possible. The group, known as the San Francisco Bay Area iGEM Team, is engineering this very real cheese from a genetic sequence found in mammals. They plan to insert that sequence into the yeast, no cows needed…

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Squink Lets You Print A Circuit Board For The Price Of A Cup Of Coffee

Originally posted on TechCrunch:

3D printing has changed the way engineers test products, allowing them to cut down on time and costs. But what about 3D printing the components that go into most of these products?

Botfactory computer engineer Carlos Ospina said that most of the people he encountered didn’t believe it was possible. But he’s proven them wrong with Squink, a portable circuit board factory that allows you to test your project in minutes in the comfort of your home — costing around $2 to print.

Launched on Kickstarter last week, Squink prints conductive ink on specific materials such as photo paper or glass. In the span of about three days, Ospina and his team have raised about $24,000 on Kickstarter.

The circuit board is designed through a web-based portal usable only with Squink plugged in. The printer applies conductive glue dots onto the ink and then picks up components from a tray, aligns them and places them…

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Snowden Document Exposes Extensive List of British Spying Tools

Originally posted on TechCrunch:

The Government Communication Headquarters (GCHQ) – Britain’s National Security Agency (NSA) equivalent – commands a wide-ranging set of tools that enable it to hack into popular social media and communications outlets and plant false information on the Internet, according to a document published by The Intercept Monday. The long list of options ranges from inflating the results of online polls to allowing the agency to monitor Skype communications in real time, though the details of that capability remain murky.

The full document, which is dated from 2012, detailing the code names of various capabilities is the latest revelation from the trove of classified information leaked to reporters by former government contractor Edward Snowden. Journalist Glenn Greenwald published the list of GCHQ capabilities in the same publication that revealed the NSA and FBI were targeting several Muslim American leaders last week under the Foreign Intelligence Service Act.

As Greenwald puts it, the tools “allow GCHQ to seed the internet with false…

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Google Co-Founder Sergey Brin: We Will Make Machines That ‘Can Reason, Think, And Do Things Better Than We Can’

Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin sat for an interview with venture capitalist Vinod Khosla.

During the interview, Brin was asked about machine learning and artificial intelligence. He says that so far, we haven’t come close to replicating human intelligence. However, he thinks it’s only a matter of time before that changes.

Source: Business Insider AU

Google, Microsoft and others form consortium to push 25/50 Gbps Ethernet

google, microsoft, ethernet, consortium

A group of five tech companies including Microsoft, Google, Arista Networks, Mellanox Technologies, and Broadcom, have come together to form an industry consortium to give 25 Gbps and 50 Gbps Ethernet a push. The consortium was formed after plans to create official IEEE specifications didn’t work out due to a perceived lack of support.

Dubbed the 25G Ethernet Consortium, the group yesterday announced the availability of a specification optimized to allow data center networks to run over a 25 or 50 Gigabit per second (Gbps) Ethernet link protocol.

The specification, which aims to support Ethernet-based transmission between server network interface controllers (NICs) and top-of-rack (ToR) switches, covers physical and MAC layer behaviors, including virtual lane alignment, autonegotiation, and forward error correction characteristics.

“This new specification will enable the cost-efficient scaling of network bandwidth delivered to server and storage endpoints in next-generation cloud infrastructure, where workloads are expected to surpass the capacity of 10 or 40 Gbps Ethernet links deployed today”, the group said in a statement.

The specification adopted by the Consortium will result in up to 2.5 times higher performance per physical lane or twinax copper wire between the rack endpoint and switch compared to current 10 Gbps and 40 Gbps Ethernet links.

The new specification is being made available royalty-free by the Consortium members to any data center ecosystem vendor or consumer who joins the Consortium. The group expects that the technology based on these standards should be available in the market within the next 12 to 18 months.

Source: Techspot

Linux Foundation announces open source in-car infotainment platform

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As tech giants Google, Apple and Microsoft all look to smarten up your car’s dashboard and entertainment system, the Linux Foundation has stepped into the scene with its own customizable, open-source alternative. Dubbed  Automotive Grade Linux, this open software stack aims to become the standardized platform upon the future of in-car systems is built.

The project has the backing of a wide-ranging list of companies in the automotive industry, including Jaguar Land Rover, Toyota and Nissan; as well as technology companies such as Advanced Telematic Systems, Fujitsu, Harman, Intel, LG, NEC, Panasonic, and Samsung.

Rather than a complete production-ready system, AGL is only meant to lay the groundwork for car makers to build their own stuff on top of it. The platform is based on the Tizen In-Vehicle Infotainment Project, and includes software for climate control, maps, dashboard displays, media playback, a news reader (AppCarousel), smart device link integration, and more.

“This AGL release is a great step forward and the community is already looking to build on its work to address a number of additional capabilities and features in subsequent releases. With AGL at the core, the industry will be able to more rapidly innovate and evolve to meet customer needs,” the Linux Foundation’s general manager of automotive, Dan Cauchy, said in a statement.

The foundation shared a few shots of the interface on its Flickr page, though it may end up looking completely different from one car maker to another.

The first version of Automotive Grade Linux is available to download now. It’s worth noting that while many big auto makers seem to be backing the project, there’s no guarantee and no indication if and when we’ll see it in cars.

Source: Techspot

Russia demands major websites to store personal data locally

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Russian parliament has just passed a bill that could change the way its citizens access the internet in a major way. The bill demands that all the data of Russian citizens being stored by various apps and websites must be done within in the country.

If the bill were to become law it would effectively mean that Russian internet users will not be able to use sites and services like Twitter and Facebook unless those companies choose to implement infrastructure inside of Russia. Reports also say that those companies will not be able to send data from within the Russian Federation to the rest of the world without specific government approval.

The move to keep Russian data local could be a continuation of the country separating itself from Western technology. We recently spotted a report from a Russian newspaper saying that the country will no longer buy American made computers for state-run companies and government facilities.

National security issues could also be the reason, but some are suggesting it is just another attempt by the Russian government to control its citizens online. Russian internet users are already subject to a much stricter code of conduct than in the US, the government recently began to force bloggers to register their names and email address and abide by a very strict set of limitations based on traffic volume. Just this week, changes made to a Russian anti-extremist law now allows the government to punish those posting what it considers inappropriate material online.

While there is a date of September 2016 on the bill, there are several other stages it will have to pass through before it actually gets set into law.

Source: techspot