When Bruno Leenders takes the 50-minute train ride to Amsterdam, he likes to stream blues and funk music through his smartphone. At home, Mr. Leenders, a Dutch technology consultant, watches Steven Seagal action movies on Netflix. Between meetings, he dashes off a few emails.
Mr. Leenders’s digital life has not changed all that much in the two years since the Netherlands started demanding that Internet providers treat all traffic equally, the same sort of rules that the United States adopted on Thursday.
His bill has gone up just marginally. He surfs, streams and downloads at the same speed — if not a little faster given the upgrades to Netherlands’ network, already one of the world’s best.
Outside an Apple store in the Netherlands. Two years ago the country mandated that Internet providers treat all traffic equally.Credit Jasper Juinen/Bloomberg News, via Getty Images
For six days, we worked to turn a small clearing situated in a stand of stately Douglas Firs into a place of our own. Our fearless leader, a builder by trade, had the right experience to guide the project. But the rest of us were total novices.
Why would a group of guys in their twenties burn a week’s worth of precious vacation days and travel thousands of miles simply to wake up with the sun, lug heavy pieces of wood through rain and mud, and essentially build a fort? It might sound nuts, but we wanted to use our hands for something other than tapping away at a keyboard or smartphone; to be directly responsible for building a place that we can enjoy together in the coming years; to use vacation for creation rather than escape; and, above all, to learn something new.
A hacking ring has stolen up to $1 billion from banks around the world in what would be one of the biggest banking breaches known, a cybersecurity firm says in a report scheduled to be delivered Monday.
The hackers have been active since at least the end of 2013 and infiltrated more than 100 banks in 30 countries, according to Russian security company Kaspersky Lab.
After gaining access to banks’ computers through phishing schemes and other methods, they lurk for months to learn the banks’ systems, taking screen shots and even video of employees using their computers, the company says.
Everyone knows one of them. They always have their nose stuck in a book, they don’t go anywhere without one and they are perennially asking you if you’ve read the book version of that movie that just came out. Bookworms. Book lovers. Bibliophiles.
Although book reading has historically been an analog and solitary activity, 2015 brings with it a new appreciation for digital gadgets, and the book industry isn’t exempt from the wave of tech innovation.
NASA is already using 3D printing to make rocket engine parts, a space pizza maker and even physical photos from the Hubble Space Telescope. But by the end of September, one NASA engineer expects to complete the first space cameras made almost entirely out of 3D-printed stuff.
“As far as I know, we are the first to attempt to build an entire instrument with 3D printing,” Jason Budinoff, an aerospace engineer at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland, said in a statement.
Budinoff is building a 2-inch (50 millimeters) camera for a CubeSat — a miniature satellite. The camera will have to pass vibration and thermal-vacuum tests next year to prove that it’s capable of space travel. Budinoff is also using 3D printing to build a 14-inch (350 mm) dual-channel telescope.
The smart home revolution is only beginning. It’s largely believed that one day all products in the house will be connected to the Internet and work together — your fridge will send a message to your TV telling you you’re out of milk; the lights will flicker if you’ve left the front door open.
But before we get to the point where products are figuratively talking to one another, manufacturers are launching web-connected items alongside their traditional offerings. This includes everything from smart thermostats and garage doors to toothbrushes, tennis racquets and even your bed. They collect data about how you use them, learn your habits, typically connect to an app and give you feedback to improve your lifestyle.
These products are a part of a larger concept called the “Internet of Things,” which refers to items and things that are web-connected. But it’s not just small products — big ticket items like refrigerators are getting smarter too; there are even models that connect (and play) Internet radio, serve up recipes from popular webpages and even send your tweets.
BMW is developing a remote-control valet parking system for cars that can be operated by a smartwatch.
The sensor-filled BMW i3 car, which will be on display at the 2015 International CES in Las Vegas in January, integrates with smartwatch and can essentially self-park. According to the company, a driver could activate the “Remote Valet Parking Assistant” via an app, which then guides the vehicle to a parking spot all by itself.
The car works with the help of laser sensors that scan the surrounding environment so it can move without running into anything. It will work in tandem with a digital site plan, so the car has a map of the environment, too.
Ever since I was little, I’m always fascinated with the images printed on the pages of travel magazines. Until today, those images still lingers in my memory. I started traveling to fulfill my dream, and that dream is to turn those images into reality, to experience how it feels like to be in a place where I have imagined myself to be. Now, I’m living the dream!