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39 year old Mumbaikar quits HR job to make Mumbai greener by planting saplings

Pollution is a global problem that effects people’s livelihood, and some people unfortunately deal with physical pain as a result. For 39 year old Shubhajit Mukherjee of Mumbai, it was the bad quality of the country’s air that caused him to have frequent headaches and sore eyes, at least according to his doctor.

Determined to tackle the issue head on, Mukherjee decided to leave his position as a human resource personnel to plant over 29,000 trees across Mumbai, aiming to reduce harmful environmental conditions.

“We have successfully planted thousands of trees in societies, with a 95 per cent survival ratio. More than 5,000 societies have come forward to give us space for planting trees. This is the true spirit of a Mumbaikar,” Mukherjee told the Bombay Times.

Making the most populous city in India a greener place is no easy task, but Mukherjee found the right incentive when realizing his illnesses would never go away unless he took action.

Hopefully this spirit of climate action can reach others who have the means to help above and beyond against pollution.

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U.K. politician Ben Wallace imposes taxes on Facebook, Google for data on terrorism

British Conservative Party politician Ben Wallace recently accused tech companies Facebook and Google for not taking effective action toward removing speech aiming to radicalize people, terrorizing the innocent community. In order to combat online extremism, Wallace believes certain taxes should be imposed if companies like Facebook and Google refuse to give up this harmful information, especially considering they are happy to sell data to advertisers for profit.

“We should stop pretending that because they sit on beanbags in T-shirts they are not ruthless profiteers,” Wallace said. “They will ruthlessly sell our details to loans and soft-porn companies but not give it to our democratically elected government.”

“Because content is not being taken down as quickly as they could do, we’re having to de-radicalize people who have been radicalized. That’s costing millions,” continued Wallace. “They can’t get away with that and we should look at all the options, including tax.”

These tech-giants are doing everything they can to develop powerful technologies to combat online terrorism, including the initiation of algorithms to strategically remove violent speech before it is even flagged. But is relying on machine learning to end this issue enough action?

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Mike Mullen speaks out on U.S. chances of nuclear war with N. Korea

Adm. Mike Mullen, Former Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff, voiced his concern about the dangers the Trump administration has imposed to the citizens of the U.S. The rhetoric involving nuclear war between the United States and North Korea was whimsically glossed over here and there in 2017, but Mullen believes the U.S. could be in a dangerous circumstance.

Despite efforts to instill a peaceful conversation around the topic, Mullen said in an ABC interview that “clearly, the president has chosen to try to disrupt and break those up as much as possible, creat[ing] a great uncertainty. And in my view, an incredibly dangerous climate exists out there in that uncertainty with how this all ends up in — and one in particular that is — top of the list is North Korea.”

Mullen makes a great point, as Kim Jong Un has wasted no time to announce exactly how his military will deal with any threat from the U.S. involving nuclear weapons.

“The US cannot wage a war against our country at all,” Kim said in an interview. “The entire mainland of the U.S. is within the range of our nuclear weapons, and the nuclear button is always on the desk of my office. They should accurately be aware that this is not a threat but a reality.”

Of course, the U.S. president had a rebuttal to further prove Mullen’s worried sentiments to be accurate.

This meme fits accordingly:

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Switzerland head of Foreign Affairs deletes a slew of his old tweets

Ignazio Cassis, an Italian born citizen, was recently chosen to hold the position of Switzerland’s newest cabinet minister, serving as the head of Foreign Affairs. With this new title, Cassis has taken the time to scrub his Twitter feed clean of any tweets that may make him seem unfit to be Switzerland’s foreign affairs minister.

Politwoops, a tweet archiving website designed to track politician’s deleted tweets, accounted for over 500 tweets that were meant to never be seen again. Luckily, data on the web will always be available for archiving, as it is very clear Cassis removed over 90% of his posts almost two weeks ago.

“I will take my political values as a Radical Party member to the cabinet, but I’m prepared to listen to other opinions and reserve the right to change my mind if need be,” Cassis said at a news conference a few months ago.

According to a report from Tages-Anzeiger, Cassis is focused on using his social media platforms to promote business operations within his department.

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Facebook provides tool to check if you interacted with Russian propaganda

The social media landscape was in a frenzy during the 2016 U.S. presidential election, with alleged misinformation and fake news distributed in large quantities to many different users. Facebook, arguably the most popular social media website in our human history, was a huge platform for this propaganda to spread, making its way into people’s news feeds and advertisements.

Facebook became aware of this disinformation, most notably data from the Internet Research Agency (IRA), a Russian distribution channel infamous for spreading fake news in its reporting.

To help users alleviate any worries on whether or not they were subject to fake news, Facebook created an online tool in the Help Center to let people login and check if they ever liked or followed any pages or accounts from the IRA.

According to CBS News, Facebook shut down 5.8 million fake accounts in the United States alone. Hopefully this is the onset of the social media giant cracking down on illegitimate news and information being shared on its network.

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Facebook Inc. admits to offering user data to major governments worldwide

Believe it or not, Facebook Inc. can relinquish your user data to the government at its request, at least according to Facebook’s latest Transparency Report.

In a graphic compiled by Bloomberg Law (seen in the newdle above), the United States ranks the highest in frequency with which Facebook Inc. requests data from users.

The United Kingdom, Italy, and France follow suit as major developed countries to request analysis of their social media using citizens. Apparently, most of the data requests involve criminal cases.

This information is readily available in Facebook’s semi-annual report, so hopefully the government will never feel inclined to breach user data for its sole benefit.

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EU court legally defines Uber as a transport company, not a digital service provider

Users of the global transportation technology Uber in the European Union will have to reconsider how they do business, as the EU recently imposed certain regulations on the company’s business model. Before, Uber Technologies Inc. managed to have itself considered as a digital service provider for users, but new rules decided by the EU court determine it to be a transport company, much like taxis and other public transit options.

“The most important part of Uber’s business is the supply of transport — connecting passengers to drivers by their smartphones is secondary,” said Rachel Farr, senior employment lawyer at Taylor Wessing. “Without transport services, the business wouldn’t exist.”

This will disrupt business operations for Uber in the EU, as plentiful people use Uber as a middle man for setting up safe and secure transactions between drivers and customers.

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Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian declares net neutrality will remain in France

The net neutrality ruling in the United States caused a backlash that even prompts other countries to chip in their two cents. France’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian decided to speak out on how net neutrality rules will continue to carry out for his representatives.

“It (net neutrality) is a cardinal principle for the internet to be a space of openness and innovation,” Le Drian said.

For multimedia entrepreneurs, the internet landscape will shift in ways hard to anticipate. Companies like TWC, Comcast, and Verizon already dominate the internet service provider market, so whatever they choose to alter about the internet will likely cause people to roll with the punches.

Hopefully there is a robust entrepreneur out there able to navigate in this uncertainty, and provide a solution that appeases the masses. There are smaller ISPs like Google Fiber that are operating in about 30 cities right now, so we will see what other options arise.

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Google’s AI development team to create a new research lab in China

Although Google search engine services are nonexistent in China unless you have a VPN, the company has made great efforts to create new innovations in artificial intelligence. Knowing China is riddled with experts scientists in the field, Google is willing to cooperate with the Chinese government to advance AI technology worldwide.

“I believe AI and its benefits have no borders,” Google Cloud chief scientist Fei-Fei Li said in her blog. “Whether a breakthrough occurs in Silicon Valley, Beijing or anywhere else, it has the potential to make everyone’s life better for the entire world. As an AI first company, this is an important part of our collective mission. And we want to work with the best AI talent, wherever that talent is, to achieve it.”

“It will be a small team focused on advancing basic AI research in publications, academic conferences and knowledge exchange,” Li added.

This could very well be the onset of China realizing what kind of company Google is. Global efforts focused towards a collective goal in technology may be the bridge this world need to come together as a cohesive unit.

 

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North Korea comfortable to have regular communication with U.N. accordingly

Jeffrey Feltman, the undersecretary general for political affairs at the United Nations, must have had a delightful time with North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong, as recent news regarding North Korea’s relationship with the U.N. arose.

According to the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) (reported on Yonhap News Agency), N. Korea is moving forward with the notion that they can comfortably communicate with the U.N, at certain levels. This is a great step in remain civil with a nation that recently boasted its firepower and ability to strike the United States, among other countries.