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What the D.C. Riots can Teach us about Technology

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Washington DC just witnessed violent riots that took most people by surprise. But for people who have been observing trends on Social Media keenly, the signs were there to see.

The events that led up to political extremists storming the capital have been building up for a while now. Much of that build-up leading was taking place on Social Media.

Now that we know how dangerous Social Media can be, there are some touch lessons for the tech community to learn.

There is no doubt that technology has done so much good within Washington DC. Law enforcement agencies have leveraged the power of Social Media to trace and apprehend individuals who participated in the lawlessness of that day.

The riots in D.C. have brought to the fore the good and bad side of technology.

How Technology Enabled the Riots in Washington

It is impossible to deny the role of technology in making what happened at the Capitol even possible. Platforms like Twitter had rioters openly agitating and organizing during the lead up to the event. Little attention was paid to them.

Extremist groups congregated and coordinated their activities on Social Media networks including Twitter, where they built up the momentum to their big day when they stormed Washington.

As the rioters plotted together with like-minded people and groups like QAnon on Social Media, they also spread lots of misinformation.

Fact or Falsehood?

One of the major observations from the activities of the few weeks is how falsehoods get retweeted more frequently than facts.

Because social media users aren’t protected enough from misinformation, misinterpretations and lies often spread faster than facts.

This easily leads to events like what we witnessed on the 6th, when mobs of rioters stormed the Capitol in Washington DC.

Social Media companies have been the subject of much criticism for their failure to act in a more timely fashion. If groups like QAnon had lost their social media platform earlier, they would not have successfully mobilized for the D. C. riots.

The Role of Tech Companies in Security After the Riot

It may seem like the role of technology in these riots was a purely negative one, but technology has also played a positive role in the situation.

Because the riots were so widely publicized on Social Media with thousands of photos, videos, and live streams, law enforcement had an easy time tracking down rioters with facial recognition technology.

The vast wireless network on the Capitol helped law enforcement to track devices within the building. As the rioters stormed the building, their IP addresses were picked up by the network. This made them easily identifiable by their phone records.

Social Media no doubt played a role in making the Washington DC riots happen. But it is also a useful tool for bringing the law-breaking rioters to book by providing a record of their intentions which are admissible in a court of law.

Besides just providing evidence after the fact, law enforcement agencies are working on using Social Media to predict such events before they occur and act to stop or prevent them.

How the Capitol Riots Could Shape the World of Technology

The riots in DC brought in light the good and bad aspects of technology and now people are even more aware than before of the influence of technology on public safety.

This newfound awareness could shift the way America handles technology going forward. Tech companies are taking a more proactive approach to dealing with threats, and the government is putting technology at the center of its security operations.

Because Washington D.C.s wireless infrastructure was so instrumental in tracing and apprehending the rioters, it is likely that more attention will be focused on establishing more smart cities across America in order to enjoy the security benefits. Experts foresee that smart cities will grow by 18.9% per year over the next five years.

Law enforcement can be a lot more efficient if they can leverage a more connected city infrastructure

Twitter and Facebook responded to the riots by locking Trump’s social media accounts ostensibly to keep him from inciting more violence.

This is the most drastic action that a social media company has taken against abuse of their platforms by public officials.

Social media sites could become more proactive in future to identify and address these threats in time.

Technology’s Power for Good and Evil

Technology is as good or as evil as its users. The D.C. riots have demonstrated clearly that technology’s greatest strength is also its greatest power to harm.

Technology’s power of positivity or destruction is possible depending on how it is used.

We cannot condemn technology in total even after what happened any more than we can keep going without changing anything.

The greatest lesson is that individual users, tech companies, and authorities must be vigilant to harness the power of Social Media for good while mitigating evil.

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7 Bitcoin Exchange Platforms available

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Some information about the Bitcoin trading platforms for serious traders.

Why do so many people invest in Bitcoin? How exactly does one invest in Bitcoin? How does one buy and sell Bitcoin? Which is the best Bitcoin exchange platform that offers safe solutions for crypto exchange?

Bitcoin is by far the most common crypto-currency ever. Millions make regular investments in Bitcoin, and even those who haven’t invested in Bitcoin, are talking about it.

One of the best ways to realize a decent return on investments is to buy into Bitcoin through a crypto savings account.

How to Invest In Bitcoin

It is a lot like buying stocks. The major difference is that Bitcoin is more volatile because the value of Bitcoin is more unstable.

We are now going to go over the step-by-step process of investing in Bitcoin.

  1. Open a brokerage account with a financial investment company that provides crypto investment services
  2. Deposit money into your brokerage account
  3. Buy shares with the funds you deposited
  4. Sell your stocks some time, hopefully at a profit

When you get to step 3 you will see the difference because you will be buying Bitcoin and not stocks.

Some platforms even allow buyers to use credit cards to buy Bitcoin. Or even to use bank account transfers to buy Bitcoin. Some of the Bitcoin trading platforms will let users carry out direct deposits of Bitcoin by directly transferring Bitcoin.

The Procedure of Bitcoin Direct Deposit

When you want to directly deposit Bitcoin, you cannot use credit cards or bank funds. You have to deposit Bitcoin directly from a different Bitcoin trading platform.

You will embed the address of the platform’s wallet and into the source exchange together with the quantity of Bitcoin before transferring it to your new Bitcoin trading platform. It sounds a little complicated, but it is really a fast process that takes a couple of minutes.

The Best Bitcoin Trading Platforms

Here are some of the best Bitcoin Trading Platforms available now

Coinbase

Coinbase enjoys the highest ratings and popularity among users for allowing people to buy bitcoin directly in US dollars.

On Coinbase, you can buy Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ethereum as well as 30 more digital coins and tokens. You can also earn interest on USDT or complete tasks to receive tokens.

Gemini

Gemini is an attractive Bitcoin trading platform because it offers users more security and a more transparent process of investing in Bitcoin. Gemini has a policy of investing more in securing customer’s investments.

BlockFi

BlockFi allows Bitcoin investors to not only buy Bitcoin, but also to lend and make interest on it. When you want to cash in on your Bitcoin, you can either borrow on it or sell it.

Robinhood

Robinhood is a free platform for crypto currency investment and trading. But only a few states have access to this facility which covers Ethereum as well as Bitcoin.

eToro

eToro is huge all over Europe and the UK but still new in the United States. eToro is a Bitcoin Trading platform that offers investors a buffet of digital assets they can invest in.

If you are new to Bitcoin, eToro offers a pretend trading account for users to practice investing and trading in Bitcoin before using real money.

Bitcoin IRA

Here is one unique Bitcoin exchange service. Bitcoin IRA users can exchange currency efficiently and their trade is regulated as well as their gains taxed.

On this platform, you can enjoy the features of a crypto wallet as well as a trading platform.

Coinmama

Coinmama offers a higher degree of versatility. Users can buy Bitcoin using a range of methods, including debit and credit cards, bank transfers, and Apple Pay accounts. The tokens on coinmama are immensely popular.

This list of 7 platforms is by no means exhaustive. There are other platforms like Hitbtc.com, Kraken.com, and Binance.

Once you understand Bitcoin, it is easy to invest because Bitcoin is so similar to stocks. Except that you are not buying stocks.

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China to Reign in Risky Borrowing and Fraud using Financial Data from Tech Companies

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To combat fraud and risky borrowing, the Chinese government may turn to local tech companies for help.

Anonymous sources told Reuters that companies like JD.com and Tencent (affiliated with Alibaba) may have to give up users’ loan information.

With such a move, China would be exerting even higher levels of control over the internet.

Under the new plan, tech companies would share loan information with Credit agencies under instruction from the People’s Bank of China.

Lenders will then be able to access this information from credit bureaus and use the information to evaluate the risk of lending to individual borrowers. These credit agencies include Baihang Credit and Credit Reference Center.

The policy may work in favor of smaller lenders who take on a higher degree of risk than larger lending companies.

Payment platforms like Alipay and Ant Group have a billion users collectively which means that they possess a wealth of information that smaller lenders can benefit from.

WeBank is a small consumer lender controlled by Tencent and JD Digits is under JD.com.

According to Shanghai-based Fintech entrepreneur Alex Sirakov, China will be making the right choice: “China seems to be making the unpopular, albeit right choice to sacrifice the current closed loop mentality financial paradigm in favor of a broader digital identity framework with potentially better access and greater efficiency in the long run.”

Large tech companies wield so much power in China that the Chinese Communist Party is growing more and more concerned about them.

Ant Group was supposed to debut on the stock market in November, but the $37 billion IPO was cancelled two days before it went live. It was an anticlimax.

The People’s Bank of China demanded that the Ant Group mends its business in order to meet government regulations and make itself more cooperative with the government and transparent in its dealings with micro-lending services.

Chinese government regulating agencies are now investigating ecommerce giant Alibaba. The mere announcement of these investigations led to a significant 9% dip in share prices.

East Asia Economics expert Richard McGregor said this to AFP: “There is an underlying political message that no company and no individual can grow so big in China to the point where they can potentially challenge the authority of the [Chinese Communist Party].” McGregor is based at Sydney’s Lowy Institute.

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The Israeli Startup Driving a ‘Tree Farming 4.0’ Revolution with AI

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An Israeli startup has benefitted from a substantial funding for their AI-powered tree-care drone project.
SeeTree is a startup that is working to help farmers care for their tree using Artificial Intelligence. The startup just received a $30 million funding in a Series B round led by the International Finance Corporation and supported by Citrosuco, Netafim, Orbia Ventures, and Hanaco Ventures who all participated in Series A.

Citrsco is an orange juice firm and Netafim is in drip irrigation.

SeeTree makes it easier for farmers to monitor their trees’ health and track the growth of each tree. It also helps develop individualized plans for the care of single trees or tree clusters.

By fitting fleets of drones with multi-spectral sensors, SeeTree captures ultra-high-resolution images which can be analyzed and compared with soil samples and tree samples.

The company then leverages Machine-Learning algorithms to carry out analyses and feed farmers with information they can act on in real-time to care for their trees. This information allows farmers to understand the state of their trees with regard to water consumption, pests, soil, growth rates, and diseases among other factors.

“We started with citrus and are servicing the largest citrus growers globally. We have a strong playbook and will continue scaling within citrus. We are now equally focused on growing our offerings into new crops such as almonds, olives, and hazelnuts, where we are already deployed and supporting farmers” explains CEO Israel Talpaz.

SeeTree’s work force of 120 is already hard at work monitoring more than fifty million trees in South Africa, Brazil, Chile, and the United States.

“Our vision is to enable the ‘Tree-Farming 4.0 Revolution’ with the Intelligence-per-Tree that we provide. SeeTree as a standalone solution can reduce operational expenses by 20-40%. By connecting SeeTree to tractors, irrigation systems we can unlock additional optimizations to further increase the value to our farmers,” adds Talpaz.

SeeTree has raised more than $45 million since it was founded in 2017 by Israel Talpaz, Barak Hachamov, and Guy Morgenstern. The tech company now wants to use their latest round of funding to take their revolution worldwide, take care of a wider range of crops, and develop their R&D and service delivery capacities.

“SeeTree has scaled in a massive, but frankly difficult-to-penetrate, market,” says Board Director Pasha Romanovski who is also a cofounder at Hanaco Ventures.

“The SeeTree team, led by Israel, has been able to productize a tremendous amount of deep technology into a platform accessible to farmers. They’ve developed great technology and have been able to execute in an important market ripe for innovation – trees.”

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