I haven't seen the nominations yet. But with hard work and a little prayer, we're confident this is the year Codebook is finally up for an Oscar.
A woman checks her cell phone as she waits in line to enter the U.S. Supreme Court. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images
Tech policy debates often end up slanted toward the industry's perspective because lawmakers use companies as the experts, and historically, recruiting experienced technologists into policymaking has been tough.
The Aspen Institute is aiming to shift that imbalance with a new program at its Tech Policy Hub, which is now taking applications for its first fellowships.
Why it matters: There is a literal and figurative country between Silicon Valley and Washington, D.C. And it's hard to solve a technology problem where lobbyists are the only tech-adept people in the conversation.
The Aspen program is loosely based on startup incubators — the boot-camp-type programs meant to mold fledgling companies into something presentable to a venture capitalist.
The Tech Hub comes at a unique moment for Silicon Valley, where the first response to social problems has always been through circuitry and software.
There aren't many techies in Congress. Forget the lawmakers — there aren't many tech-trained aides. By the count of Travis Moore, director of TechCongress, a group helping match lawmakers with tech staffers, only 9 of the thousands of Congressional staffers came from tech backgrounds.
What's next: If the incubator idea works for tech policy, Aspen's Cooper says she hopes to bring the same framework to other issues.
A sign indicating the borders of the sectors in allied occupied Germany after WWII is pictured during the opening day of Google's new Berlin office, Jan. 22. Photo: Tobias Schwarz/AFP/Getty Images.
Facebook's secure messaging app WhatsApp announced Monday that it would cap the number of people a user could forward a message to at 5 in an attempt to prevent false stories from spreading too quickly.
What they're saying: “We’re imposing a limit of five messages all over the world as of today,” Victoria Grand, WhatsApp vice president for policy and communications, told Reuters, announcing the change in Indonesia.
Why it matters: U.S. WhatsApp users are probably most familiar with false allegations inflaming the political climate. That's bad, but nothing near as bad as what's happened in India, where rumors have lead to lynchings.
Because WhatsApp is encrypted in a way that not even Facebook can read the messages — thus preventing oppressive regimes from subpoenaing Facebook for the messages — there aren't many good options to moderate links and other content from propagandists or well-meaning-but-incorrect uncles.
4.32% of the Monero cryptocurrency was mined by malware infecting victim's systems, according to researchers at the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid and King's College London. The study was published earlier this month (I came across it on ZDNet).
By contrast, the United States began rolling out security enhancements to $10 and $20 notes when 1 in 10,000 bills were counterfeit — the paper-currency equivalent of being mined by criminals.
That's not a perfect analog. Obviously, the illicit U.S. bills were not real, while Monero is actual cryptocurrency being created through illicit means — sort of illegitimate legitimate currency.
We'll see you on Thursday!