Pakistani province plants one billion trees to help slow down effects of global warming

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    TOPSHOT – Moto taxi driver hold flags of the governing Rwanda Patriotic Front’s at the beginning of a parade in Kigali, on August 02, 2017.

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A province in Pakistan has planted a billion trees in just two years as part of an effort to restore forests wiped out by decades of felling and natural disasters such as floods. Cricket-star turned politician Imran Khan, who heads the political party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), launched the green mission in Khyber Pakhtunkhaw in the north-west of the country. The project – dubbed Billion Tree Tsunami – aims to slow down the effects of global warming in Pakistan which ranks in the Top 10 in a list of countries most likely to be affected by the phenomenon.
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BlockchainsThe great chain of being sure about things

  • Other applications for blockchain and similar “distributed ledgers” range from thwarting diamond thieves to streamlining stockmarkets: the NASDAQ exchange will soon start using a blockchain-based system to record trades in privately held companies.
  • The blockchain began life in the mind of Satoshi Nakamoto, the brilliant, pseudonymous and so far unidentified creator of bitcoin—a “purely peer-to-peer version of electronic cash”, as he put it in a paper published in 2008.
  • This is guaranteed by the mixture of mathematical subtlety and computational brute force built into its “consensus mechanism”—the process by which the nodes agree on how to update the blockchain in the light of bitcoin transfers from one person to another.
  • Both have bitcoin “wallets”—software which accesses the blockchain rather as a browser accesses the web, but does not identify the user to the system.
  • If everything looks kosher, specialised nodes called miners will bundle Alice’s proposal with other similarly reputable transactions to create a new block for the blockchain.

WHEN the Honduran police came to evict her in 2009 Mariana Catalina Izaguirre had lived in her lowly house for three decades. Unlike many of her neighbours in Tegucigalpa, the country’s capital, she even had an official title to the land on which it stood.
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BitcoinThe magic of mining

The magic of mining via @TheEconomist  #FinTech #Blockchain

  • Operators of conventional payment systems live on transaction fees, but that business model would not have worked for bitcoin in its early days, because of a lack of users.
  • Despite the slump in bitcoin’s value—last year it performed even worse than the Russian rouble and Ukrainian hryvnia—the combined mining power on the network is still increasing, and some miners are still investing in upgrading their machines, making this one of the fastest-moving parts of the IT industry.
  • The makers of mining computers benefit from the way the bitcoin system adjusts the difficulty of the puzzles, every two weeks, according to how much computing power is hooked up to the system.
  • When the bitcoin price was rising, many of its fans thought investing in mining equipment was a better bet than simply buying and holding the currency.
  • The bitcoin protocol in its current form can only process seven transactions per second—nothing compared with the capacity of conventional payment systems such as Visa, which can handle 10,000.

A HUGE aircraft hangar in Boden, in northern Sweden, big enough to hold a dozen helicopters, is now packed with computers—45,000 of them, each with a whirring fan to stop it overheating. The machines (pictured) work ceaselessly, trying to solve fiendishly difficult mathematical puzzles. The solutions are, in themselves, unimportant.
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Companies are buying bitcoin to pay off hackers, says top cybersecurity CEO

  • The HBO hack is just one recent example of how cyberattackers are now targeting corporations, and CyberArk chief Udi Mokady said that bitcoin is often used to pay them off.
  • “Many companies choose to buy bitcoin in some state or fashion and pay them off.”
  • Mokady said that the efforts of companies like his to teach companies about how to prevent cyberattacks are especially stymied in Europe, where firms are not required to disclose when or how many times they were breached.
  • Starting in 2018, disclosure will become a requirement, which should benefit cybersecurity companies like Mokady’s as well as those at risk of cyberthreat, the CEO told Cramer.
  • “The enterprises that we see and work with are actually trying to be smarter than [those who buy bitcoin for ransom] and learn from other companies’ mistakes and put in the means to prevent such attacks from really taking them down,” Mokady told Cramer.

Jim Cramer spoke with CyberArk’s Udi Mokady to hear about how companies are getting involved with cryptocurrencies like bitcoin because of cyberattacks.
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Companies are buying bitcoin to pay off hackers, says top cybersecurity CEO

Companies are buying bitcoin to pay off hackers, says top cybersecurity CEO  #security

  • The HBO hack is just one recent example of how cyberattackers are now targeting corporations, and CyberArk chief Udi Mokady said that bitcoin is often used to pay them off.
  • “Many companies choose to buy bitcoin in some state or fashion and pay them off.”
  • Mokady said that the efforts of companies like his to teach companies about how to prevent cyberattacks are especially stymied in Europe, where firms are not required to disclose when or how many times they were breached.
  • Starting in 2018, disclosure will become a requirement, which should benefit cybersecurity companies like Mokady’s as well as those at risk of cyberthreat, the CEO told Cramer.
  • “The enterprises that we see and work with are actually trying to be smarter than [those who buy bitcoin for ransom] and learn from other companies’ mistakes and put in the means to prevent such attacks from really taking them down,” Mokady told Cramer.

Jim Cramer spoke with CyberArk’s Udi Mokady to hear about how companies are getting involved with cryptocurrencies like bitcoin because of cyberattacks.
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Blockchain Use Cases: From Image Mining & Virtual Economy to Crowdfunding

  • The growing adoption of Blockchain technology has been disrupting a number of  industries, including financial services, data management, healthcare, agriculture, supply chain, gambling, gaming, public services, music, airline ticketing and many more.
  • Blockchain technology is also effective in preventing theft in remittance transactions due to the irreversibility of the transactions.
  • As the technology gains popularity and acceptance, many “old school” processes are going to be disrupted and replaced by the same Blockchain technology that powers Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
  • Let’s explore several startup companies that are implementing Blockchain technology to disrupt their respective industries.
  • Lampix plans to use Blockchain technology to establish one of the biggest image databases in the world.

Blockchain technology seems to have virtually endless applications from finance, healthcare, entertainment, among others.
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Daily chart: A Bit expensive

  • Bitcoin’s record price looks like a bubbleNOT MANY fund-managers have heard of Bitcoin, let alone put any of their clients’ money in it.
  • Since September, when The Economist last wrote about it, the price of a unit of Bitcoin as recorded by Mt Gox, a popular Bitcoin exchange, has soared.
  • Unlike other online currencies—such as the new Amazon Coins—the supply of Bitcoin is not determined by any central issuing authority.
  • Though an increasing number of legitimate businesses are adopting the currency—one Finnish software developer has offered to pay its employees in Bitcoin—it still has relatively few users.
  • This suggests that the new users are buying Bitcoin as an investment, not as a means of exchange.

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