Archive for the ‘government’ category: Page 8

Jul 28, 2020

The Government Is Building an Unhackable Quantum Internet

Posted by in categories: computing, engineering, government, internet, quantum physics

The U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) has announced a plan to make a quantum internet it says is virtually unhackable. This is definitely a long-term plan that will require new kinds of engineering and technology, not something that will be implemented next year. Let’s take a look at the concept, the plan the DoE has laid out, and how long it all might take.

Within the framework of quantum mechanics, the network proposed here is pretty intuitive. (That’s a big caveat, though!) The report begins with a surprising notion: Although headlines and research have focused on the power of quantum computing, we’re far away from any practical and recognizable computer powered by quantum phenomena. The idea of a quantum network, the DoE says, is far closer to our reach.

🤯 You like quantum. We like quantum. Let’s nerd out together.

Jul 27, 2020

Irregular disorder and the NASA budget

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, government, law

It’s been a long time since there’s been anything like “regular order” in the congressional appropriations process: individual bills passed by the House and Senate, their differences resolved in conference to produce a final version that’s signed into law before the beginning of the fiscal year October 1. Instead, there are usually stopgap funding bills, called continuing resolutions, that extend for weeks or months before a massive omnibus bill, combining up to a dozen different bills, is eventually passed.

Fiscal year 2021 is not going to be the year regular order returns to the appropriations process. The pandemic took hold in the early phases of the appropriations process, just as Congress was starting its usual series of hearings on various parts of the administration’s budget proposal released in early February. Congress instead devoted its attention to series of relief packages during the limited time it was in session this spring.

With no hearings about NASA’s budget proposal by either House or Senate appropriators, the first sign of their views about the agency’s budget had to wait until a few weeks ago. On July 7, the House Appropriations Committee released its draft of the commerce, justice, and science (CJS) spending bill that includes NASA. That bill provides $22.6 billion for NASA, the same amount the agency received in 2020. The White House, by comparison, asked for $25.2 billion for NASA.

Jul 26, 2020

The Coronavirus Eviction Crisis

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, business, government

With the coronavirus raging across the world and the United States, I would to talk about one particular issue that is currently and will wreck havoc on the US: evictions due to the coronavirus and coronavirus-related unemployment.

Update: Turns out the federal government did have an eviction moratorium in the past. However, it ended a few days ago. Luckily, however, many in the government are thinking about extending the moratorium.

Continue reading “The Coronavirus Eviction Crisis” »

Jul 26, 2020

Moderna gets further $472 million U.S. award for coronavirus vaccine development

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, government

(Reuters) — Moderna Inc said on Sunday it has received an additional $472 million from the U.S. government’s Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) to support development of its novel coronavirus vaccine.

Jul 25, 2020

The Microsoft Police State: Mass Surveillance, Facial Recognition, and the Azure Cloud

Posted by in categories: drones, government, robotics/AI, surveillance

Microsoft has partnered with scores of police surveillance vendors who run their products on a “Government Cloud” supplied by the company’s Azure division and that it is pushing platforms to wire police field operations, including drones, robots.

Microsoft helps police surveil and patrol communities through its own offerings and a network of partnerships — while its PR efforts obscure this.

Continue reading “The Microsoft Police State: Mass Surveillance, Facial Recognition, and the Azure Cloud” »

Jul 24, 2020

Pivot to ‘green’: Russian gas & nuclear energy giants Gazprom and Rosatom to start producing ‘clean’ hydrogen

Posted by in categories: economics, government, nuclear energy

With much of the world planning to pivot away from oil and gas in the near future, the country’s government is looking ahead to a more diversified energy sector. The international ‘green’ trend is a significant threat to the Russian economy, which is at present largely dependent on the export of oil, gas, and coal. Starting from 2021, the government intends to build on the country’s reputation as a hydrogen supplier, aiming to make exports of the world’s most abundant gas a large part of its energy sector.

Jul 24, 2020

U.S. Eyes Building Nuclear Power Plants on Mars, the Moon

Posted by in categories: government, nuclear energy, space travel

“Small nuclear reactors can provide the power capability necessary for space exploration missions of interest to the Federal government,” the Energy Department wrote in the notice published Friday.

The Energy Department, NASA and Battelle Energy Alliance, the U.S. contractor that manages the Idaho National Laboratory, plan to hold a government-industry webcast technical meeting in August concerning expectations for the program.

The plan has two phases. The first is developing a reactor design. The second is building a test reactor, a second reactor be sent to the moon, and developing a flight system and lander that can transport the reactor to the moon. The goal is to have a reactor, flight system and lander ready to go by the end of 2026.

Jul 24, 2020

Iran renews threat of “counter blow” against U.S. for Soleimani killing

Posted by in category: government

Khamenei said Tehran expects Beghdad to follow through on expelling American forces, claiming their presence “begets insecurity.” He added that while the U.S. seeks to undermine Iran-Iraq ties, Washington “should not be feared at all because it cannot do a damn thing.”

Iraqis have also demanded the departure of U.S. forces from the country, and in December—alongside Iranian-backed militias—stormed and ransacked the U.S. embassy in Baghdad.

After Soleimani’s death, Iraqi lawmakers backed a non-binding resolution calling on the government to expel U.S. troops from the country, though the vote was boycotted by most Sunni and Kurdish politicians.

Continue reading “Iran renews threat of ‘counter blow’ against U.S. for Soleimani killing” »

Jul 24, 2020

Why College Is Never Coming Back

Posted by in category: government

Do you agree?

CAMBRIDGE, July 14, 2020 — Photo taken on July 14, 2020 shows a view of the campus of Harvard University in Cambridge of Massachusetts, the United States. The U.S. government has rescinded a new rule that could have denied international students their stay in the country if they only attend online courses in the coming fall semester, a federal judge in Boston, Massachusetts said Tuesday. (Photo by Fan Lin/Xinhua via Getty) (Xinhua/ via Getty Images)

Jul 22, 2020

U.S. agrees to pay Pfizer and BioNTech $2 billion for 100 million doses of coronavirus vaccine

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, government

The U.S. will pay Pfizer and biotech firm BioNTech $1.95 billion to produce and deliver 100 million doses of their Covid-19 vaccine if it proves safe and effective, the companies announced Wednesday.

It was the largest such deal between the government and companies racing to develop a coronavirus vaccine.

Under the agreement, the U.S. can acquire 500 million additional doses, the Department of Health and Human Services said. Germany-based BioNTech and Pfizer are jointly developing four potential vaccines.

Continue reading “U.S. agrees to pay Pfizer and BioNTech $2 billion for 100 million doses of coronavirus vaccine” »

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