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Mutant Registration vs. Vaccine Registration

Slashdot -

Responding to an editorial endorsing a national vaccine registry in Canada (though the same kind of registry could be and has been proposed in the U.S. with the same logic), an anonymous reader writes "Vaccine Registration makes me think of Mutant and Superhero registration. The reasons are similar. It's based on fear and misinformation. People fear that unvaccinated people will doom us all. Sound familiar? The difference is this is real. (Oh, and they probably won't use sentinels to track down the dangerous unvaccinated folks.) Thoughts?" From the linked editorial: "A national vaccination registry would identify which Canadians have been fully vaccinated, those who have received less than a full dose of shots, and those who have not been vaccinated at all. Having a vaccine registry in place in the event of an outbreak of measles, whooping cough, and diseases like these would enable public health officials to identify the children and adults who need vaccinations. Getting them the shots they need would reduce the risk of anyone on the list getting sick, and would also reduce the threat of an outbreak in the community in which they live or travel to [and] from." In the U.S., immunization records — at least, ones which have been put in electronic form at all — are maintained in a mix of databases, including at the state level, or maintained by cities, or by insurance companies and medical providers. Here, some people (like the reader who submitted this story) also see a potential for unwarranted privacy invasion in a national vaccination registry; however, their case isn't helped by often being tied to opposition to vaccination more generally.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Fake WeChat App Targeting Android Users with Banking Trojan

The Hacker News -

After Whatsapp, The Chinese WeChat is the second most popular messaging application and currently being targeted by cybercriminals to spread a new Banking Trojan in order to steal the financial information from its users. WeChat is a famous mobile instant messaging app developed by Chinese company Tencent, with more than 355 million users across the world. The app offers people to

My 2 Cents for Your 2 Cents: Cryptiv Empowering Content Creators

Bitcoin Magazine -

There’s a simple reason as to why strippers in the USA get more tips than strippers in Canada: the dollar bill. Canadian strippers miss out on gain because throwing coins is impractical, and giving up a fiver is too much. This doesn’t just stop in the strip club. The USA generally has a richer tipping culture, which would not be possible without the ease of handing over a single dollar bill to express gratitude, value, and thanks. The dollar bill facilitates easy tipping.

This is needed in the online world. How much more money would Wikipedia raise if we didn’t have to go through paypal to make a donation? When the number of steps are reduced in a transaction, the transactions grow. It’s not arbitrary, it’s significant. A simple button could be worth $300 million.

But we can take it a step further with cryptocurrencies, and a company based out of Toronto is hoping to do exactly that. Cryptiv is an online wallet which makes sending “pennies” over the internet as nonchalant as giving a buck to a bell boy. Currently, if you wish to tip someone over social platforms such as twitter and reddit, there’s a convoluted series of steps: users have to type a specific set of text commands to register with the tip bots and to send and receive tips; there is also no visual interface to interact with. The small nature of micro-transaction deters both parties from transacting; it’s too much of a technical hassle for a penny.

But pennies add up. And pennies would be worth it with an instant system. Mat Cybula, CEO of Cryptiv, hopes to make the process simple enough so that micro-transactions become a natural part of our everyday online interaction. “Cryptiv will facilitate seamless transactions using digital currencies over the internet and across social media,” says Mat, “and it will be currency agnostic, so you can use a cryptocurrency of your choice.” Mat also predicts that Cryptiv will enable the growth of communities since the platform builds recognition for contributors through transparency. “With cryptocurrecies, we are going to see new behaviors that weren’t possible before.”

If micro-transaction are seamlessly integrated into social media, they could shape a new economically symbiotic online culture. We tip bartenders, bathroom staff, and taxi drivers, but what about the people who feed us entertainment through their blogs, videos, articles, and stories? The individuals who create informative, valuable online content? The artists who give us beautiful visuals and words? Everything on the internet is created by someone and most of it is put out for free. These people don’t get paid for their work unless they sell their website and video space to advertisers of which the profits are halved by middlemen like adsense. From a content creator’s bias, this could be a revolutionary step towards independence.

Imagine being tipped for the originality or humorous value of your tweets? A social voting system that financially empowers content creators! I’ll be able to give my 2 cents for your 2 cents.

This is the next step in monetization, except this time it’s a tool for the economic empowerment of content creators and online communities. This is the new, more direct, more democratic capitalism. This is creating a purely voluntary, peer-to-peer support culture. This is an opportunity to bypass the middlemen. We can create micro-economies within already existing online spaces by way of voluntary exchange ecosystems. We have achieved diverse online engagement, so let’s monetize this engagement in a direct way, and enable the growth of financial sovereignty within our online social cultures.

The post My 2 Cents for Your 2 Cents: Cryptiv Empowering Content Creators appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

The Perfect Desktop - Xubuntu 14.04 LTS (Trusty Tahr)

HowtoForge - Linux Howtos and Tutorials -

The Perfect Desktop - Xubuntu 14.04 LTS (Trusty Tahr)

This tutorial shows how you can set up a Xubuntu 14.04 desktop that is a full-fledged replacement for a Windows desktop, i.e.that has all the software that people need to do the things they do on their Windows desktops. The advantages are clear: you get a secure system without DRM restrictions that works even on old hardware, and the best thing is: all software comes free of charge. Xubuntu uses the lightweight XFCE desktop environment.

MIT’s Bitcoin Expo and the Students Behind It

Bitcoin Magazine -

MIT’s students have made the news again. Dan Elitzer, president and founder of MIT’s Bitcoin Club, and Jeremy Rubin, a sophomore in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, have organized the MIT Bitcoin Expo which will be held this Saturday, May 3rd at MIT’s Compton Laboratories Building 26-100. The talks start at 12:00pm and will feature Gavin Andresen, a core developer of the bitcoin protocol; James D’Angelo, founder and host of the World Bitcoin Network; and Alan Reiner, founder and CEO of Armory Technologies, among others.

According to Dan and Jeremy, Bitcoin has not gotten the attention it deserves on campus, despite the Bitcoin Club having to deny entry into their filled meetings, most people only know the basics.

What is your goal for the Bitcoin Expo?

“We want to begin educating students and the community about what Bitcoin is and why it’s so exciting, beyond the fact that they’re going to be getting $100 worth of bitcoin. We also want to start equipping students with the knowledge and tools to begin working on projects that utilize Bitcoin. That’s why we’ve got some very senior software developers from Armory Technologies and BitPay leading workshops about transaction scripting and open-source libraries for Bitcoin.”

You might have heard about Jeremy back in December, when he and the co-founders of Tidbit were subpoenaed by New Jersey’s Division of Consumer Affairs and Office of Consumer Protection. Tidbit’s focus was to help websites gain revenue by having visiting users mine bitcoins while on the site instead of using advertising. The start-up took top honors for innovation at MIT’s Node Knockout programming competition in November.

Now the Jeremy is working on a different project, this time with Dan, The Bitcoin Project.

Alumni, the bitcoin community and other donors raised close to $500,000 for the Bitcoin Project. The Bitcoin Project is an experiment where about $100 will be distributed in bitcoin to MIT’s roughly 4,500 undergraduates. The experiment will help see what people do with their bitcoin in a bitcoin community.

Through the MIT Bitcoin Project, Rubin and Elitzer aim “to help MIT continue its long tradition as the preeminent educational institution at the forefront of emerging technologies, and establish MIT as a global hub where Bitcoin-related research, ideas, and ventures are studied, discussed, and developed.”

Currently there are seven businesses that already accept bitcoin in Cambridge, including a few restaurants, an art gallery and even a laser cutting, engraving & 3D printing service according to SpendBitcoins.com

How have local merchants responded to the project?

“We haven’t heard reactions from local merchants yet, but we’ll be organizing outreach efforts in partnership with the MIT Bitcoin Club and others to get as many as possible on board by the fall.”

Did you ever consider making an Altcoin for MIT?

“No. As one Reddit commenter pointed out, this is MIT; we build for the real world. There’s an existing ecosystem outside of MIT for Bitcoin that doesn’t exist for any AltCoins or anything that we would create specifically for this initiative. We want to both leverage that ecosystem and get students contributing back to it.”

What is the interest of bitcoin like at MIT? Are hardware engineers making miners; are software engineers making forks of cgminer; are the English and economic students writing articles on Bitcoin?

“There are a few students working on Bitcoin-related ventures and doing research into cryptocurrencies, but overall there hasn’t been nearly as much activity as we think is warranted. There is a LOT of interest in learning though. The MIT Bitcoin Club had almost 200 students jammed into a classroom to hear Jeremy Allaire give a presentation on Bitcoin back in February. We had to turn people away 15 minutes before the event was scheduled to start because we didn’t have room for them to get in. That’s the kind of interest we were seeing on campus to learn more about Bitcoin, even before we announced the bitcoin distribution.”

If the price of BTC rises by autumn, will the students get more than $100?

“No, we raised the funds in USD and will convert it close to the distribution date. We think the $100USD amount is a powerful psychological threshold, where students will really take it seriously, so we wanted to make sure it would be there.”

Do you have room for more than 200 people?

At the expo, yes. 550 is the room capacity, I believe.



The post MIT’s Bitcoin Expo and the Students Behind It appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.


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