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FPAs: From a Niche to a Necessity - NSR Feb 2019
"While the goalposts for the greater take-up of FPAs keep moving further out, the networks of tomorrow may set requirements that are too demanding for parabolic antennas. This in turn, pressures flat panel technology to come to fruition sooner rather than later in the hope of moving it from a niche product to a necessity. Given the state of play today, how likely is it that FPAs will serve the networks of tomorrow and star in that lead role?"

"NSR’s recently published Flat Panel Satellite Antennas, 4th Edition report considers it likely, but very challenging to get the role. The report forecasts over 1.5 million units to ship in 2028, growing at a strong CAGR of 71.2%. Mobility will continue to dominate equipment revenues, with complex capabilities keeping terminals expensive. Volume will be driven by Fixed Applications, specifically Consumer Broadband, but only if manufacturers are given more incentives to drive down prices to target the largest addressable markets."
antennas  satellite  NSR  market-research 
february 2019
Researchers Demonstrate Serious Privacy Attacks on 4G and 5G Protocols
A group of academic researchers have revealed a design weakness in the 4G/5G protocol which can be exploited by an attacker to identify the victim's presence in a particular cell area just from the victim's soft-identity such as phone number and Twitter handle. "Any person with a little knowledge of cellular paging protocols can carry out this attack," said Syed Rafiul Hussain, one of the co-authors of the paper, told TechCrunch.

The abstract below from the paper released today called "Privacy Attacks to the 4G and 5G Cellular Paging Protocols Using Side Channel Information" specifies the dangers of the discovered vulnerability.
cyber-spectrum  spectrum-vulnerability  4G  5G  CircleID 
february 2019
Smallsat Growth on Shaky Foundations - NSR Feb 2019
"While the relative simplicity and the associated low-cost architecture are enabling (the much needed) easier access to the space applications, the challenge lies in the readiness of the existing infrastructure to support this rapidly growing market."

"A market that has historically been relatively slow to develop will now experience an accelerated expansion. This is bound to put immense pressure on the existing infrastructure and the different stakeholders in the supply and value chain."


= Satellite Manufacturing Constraints - "Tier 2 and Tier 3 components such as electronic systems and subsystems are expected to create considerable bottlenecks."

= Launch Constraints - "launch segment is expected to remain one of the biggest bottlenecks of the small satellite market over the next decade"

= In-Orbit Challenges - "lack of adequate space traffic tracking and management regime"
NSR  satellite  smallsats  market-research 
february 2019
Will Satellite Operators Become (Rural) Mobile Operators? - NSR, Feb 2019
"Connecting the “other 3 billion” is a recurring motto for the satcom Industry. Unfortunately, the reality is that the impact on mitigating the digital divide is still modest. Mobile is the de facto way of getting online for “the bottom of the pyramid” but here, satellite can still find enormous opportunities by complementing the gaps of terrestrial networks. Given this trend, are Wi-Fi hotspots over satellite the key way for satcom to bring the unconnected online?"

"Numerous actors in the satcom space are launching Wi-Fi hotspot offers to serve the low-end segments of the market. The addressable market for these kinds of solutions is massive given the billions living in underserved areas. According to NSR’s VSAT and Broadband Markets, 17th Edition report, Wi-Fi hotspot annual service revenues will reach $7.5 billion by 2027, representing 43% of total satellite consumer broadband revenues."

"With HTS becoming the norm, satellite broadband offers can now meet UN Broadband Commission affordability targets of 1 GB of data for less than 2% of the monthly GNI per capita"

"Today, a satellite terminal that supports double-digit Mbps with 10s of concurrent sessions combined with a Wi-Fi smallcell is below the $1,000 USD threshold, which is within the reach of local businesses."

"Selecting the right locations to set up the Wi-Fi hotspot is not trivial. It needs a reliable local microentrepreneur with appropriate technical skills to maintain the equipment and run the network. The village must be big enough with adequate disposable income to generate demand but not too large that it will shortly be targeted by terrestrial alternatives. In the same line, the hotspot should be far enough from terrestrial alternatives to avoid being cannibalized by terrestrial solutions, but penetration of mobile devices is crucial to ensure customers can access the network."
NSR  satellite  rural  Wi-Fi  hotspots  broadband  HTS 
february 2019
Cryptominers Infected 10x More Organizations Than Ransomware in 2018 - CircleID, Feb 2019
A new security report reveals cryptominers infected ten times more organizations than ransomware in 2018, but only one in five IT security professionals were aware their company's networks had been infected by mining malware.
cybersecurity  CircleID  cryptomining 
february 2019
5G spectrum auctions to escalate in 2019 | PolicyTracker, Feb 2019
"The US and Switzerland have both kicked off the year with a sale of 5G frequencies, with many more countries set to follow. Sixteen countries are known to have confirmed 5G spectrum auctions in 2019, according to PolicyTracker's auction tracker service.

So far, 14 countries have already completed 5G licensing procedures in at least one spectrum band. These include Australia, Finland, Italy, Ireland, Latvia, Mexico, South Korea, Oman, Spain, Qatar, the UK, the United Arab Emirates, the US and Switzerland.

In addition, the Czech Republic, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Hong Kong, Norway, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Tanzania and Thailand have awarded potentially 5G-suitable spectrum."
PolicyTracker  spectrum-auctions 
february 2019
Cybersecurity for Autonomous Vehicles Must Be a Top Concern for Automakers - IEEE - The Institute Jan 2019
Via Dale, "no mention of jamming, spoofing, and replay attacks"

"Auto manufacturers have begun taking steps to mitigate cybersecurity risks in their autonomous vehicles."

Problems identified:
= lack of consensus
= standards needed
automobile  cyber-spectrum  cybersecurity  IEEE 
february 2019
How SMS is alleviating hunger in Zimbabwe | Oxfam Australia
"We are in Zimbabwe using mobile technology to tackle the country’s crippling food and cash crisis. We’ve equipped the most vulnerable families with mobile phones to receive emergency cash transfers via text to pay for basic food items."
Oxfam  cellular  mobile  finance 
february 2019
The Mobile Gender Gap Report 2018 | Mobile for Development - GSMA
"This report reveals for the first time the magnitude of the gender gap in mobile internet use across low- and middle-income countries, as well as highlighting the persistent gender disparity in mobile ownership and the barriers to ownership and use."

Findings from this report are based on the results of over 25,000 face-to-face surveys commissioned by GSMA Intelligence across 23 low- and middle-income countries, and subsequent modelling and analysis of this survey data.
GSMA  mobile  cellular  development-assistance  gender 
february 2019
Technology changes everything | Oxfam Ireland
"Our innovative Pink Phones project gives mobile phones to women like Vansy (pictured) living in rural areas which they use to get the latest farming information, such as market prices for their crops and weather patterns, helping to plan the best time to harvest. Having access to this technology has transformed their lives, enabling them to sell more vegetables and build a sustainable livelihood. "
Oxfam  mobile  cellular 
february 2019
The impact intrapraneurs: How Swiss Re and Oxfam joined forces to help African farmers | Ethical Corporation, Oct 2017
"In this guest blog, Karen Deignan of Net-Works interviews Christina Ulardic of Swiss Re and Marjorie Brans, formerly of Oxfam America, to find out how they worked together to create the R4 Rural Resilience Initiative to tackle climate risk in Africa"

"The R4 Rural Resilience Initiative is a comprehensive risk-management initiative that helps smallholder farmers in Africa cope with the impacts of climate change. ...
R4 currently reaches over 40,000 farmers (about 200,000 people) in Ethiopia, Senegal, Malawi and Zambia through a combination of four risk-management strategies: improved resource-management through asset creation (risk reduction), insurance (risk transfer), livelihoods diversification and microcredit (prudent risk taking) and savings (risk reserves)."

"Swiss Re provided the insurance component, but there were other components designed to ensure farmers could grow their crops successfully, get access to micro-credit to buy more seeds, and build up some savings."
Oxfam  SwissRe  climate  resilience  interviews  climate-change  insurance  risk 
february 2019
Organic Rice Farmers to Use Technology for Fair Prices | Oxfam in Cambodia
"This year, Oxfam launched Blockchain for Livelihood from Organic Cambodian Rice​ (BlocRice), the first pilot project in Cambodia using blockchain technology to connect a network of people in the rice supply chain to ensure farmers are better and more fairly paid."

"The goal is to promote a “smart contract”, a three-way digital contract farming agreement between organic farmers, rice exporter and buyers in the Netherlands."
Oxfam  farming  blockchain  Cambodia 
february 2019
Japanese operators vie for lower band 5G spectrum | PolicyTracker: Feb 2019
"Japan’s forthcoming spectrum award will be the first for 5G decided by a beauty contest rather than an auction. This is not the only thing that makes it unusual. "

"Over the past 12 to 18 months, Japan has debated the possible use of auctions to assign spectrum but ultimately decided to maintain its favoured approach of using beauty contests. Other countries have used auctions for 5G but Japan is sticking with what it knows best."

"MIC is awarding six blocks of 100 MHz in the more desirable lower bands (3.7 GHz and 4.5 GHz), and four blocks of 400 MHz at 28 GHz."

"Also interesting is MIC’s decision to pick out some frequency ranges for industry or specific applications."

"The government has complained recently about high mobile prices. Senior officials have accused operators of using spectrum, a public asset, in the pursuit of excess profits."
PolicyTracker  5G  Japan  spectrum-auctions  mmwave 
february 2019
GPS spoofing, low-cost GPS simulator - DEF CON 23 , 2015
Unicorn Team – Radio and Hardware Security Research
Qihoo 360 Technology Co Ltd
GPS  spoofing  DefCon  China  hacking 
february 2019
Are Satellite Handhelds Still a Growth Market? - NSR Feb 2019
"Because of this trend towards event driven usage, handhelds as a share of satellite land mobile will continue to decline long-term."

"With increased terrestrial and 5G networks around the corner, handheld unit sales have suffered, and so offering hybrid solutions and services will characterize ecosystems for land-mobile connectivity in the coming decade. While these networks have already significantly impacted both growth usage of handhelds, cellular compatibility can boost usage with other device types"
NSR  satellite  market-research 
february 2019
Security Researcher Assaulted Following Vulnerability Disclosure - cybersec Feb 2019
"Following a serious vulnerability disclosure affecting casinos globally, an executive of casino technology vendor Atrient has assaulted the security researcher who disclosed the vulnerability at the ICE conference in London"

"These kiosks and the back end server communicate the personal details of their users and send data like drivers license scans (used for enrollment), user home addresses and contact details, as well as details about user activity, unencrypted over publicly accessible internet. When the researcher discovered that the unauthenticated reward server was directly connected to the kiosks on the casino floor they realized that the API the kiosks used was wide open and extremely vulnerable to criminal abuse."
vulnerability  cybersecurity 
february 2019
Big Telecom Sold Highly Sensitive Customer GPS Data Typically Used for 911 Calls - Motherboard Feb 2019
"Around 250 bounty hunters and related businesses had access to AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint customer location data, according to documents obtained by Motherboard. The documents also show that telecom companies sold data intended to be used by 911 operators and first responders to data aggregators, who sold it to bounty hunters. The data was in some cases so accurate that a user could be tracked to specific spots inside a building."

"Some of the data available to CerCareOne customers included a phone’s “assisted GPS” or A-GPS data, ... A-GPS is a technology that is used by first responders to locate 911 callers in emergency situations."
Motherboard  GPS  cellular  location  surveillance  AT&T  T-Mobile  Sprint 
february 2019
Will 5G live up to the hype? It depends who you ask | PolicyTracker: Feb 2019
Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg, for example, told the CES show in Las Vegas that “5G will change everything”. “We’re going to see a technology change that is going to transform people, businesses and society,” he said.

At the same tech convention, AT&T CEO John Donovan confirmed that the mobile carrier would switch the “LTE” indicator to “5G E” (for evolution) when users connect to the operator’s faster LTE network.

The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) also recently published a report that highlights spectrum management issues, infrastructure sharing, access costs and investment incentives as key issues to consider for 5G success.
“A viable case for investment in 5G can be made for densely populated urban areas… [but] rural and suburban areas are less likely to enjoy 5G investment, and this will potentially widen the digital divide,” it says.

It has also warned regulators against premature 5G deployments. “The need for 5G is not immediate,” notes the report.
PolicyTracker  5G  hype  Verizon  AT&T  ITU  DigitalDivide 
february 2019
Super-tall, super-skinny, super-expensive: the 'pencil towers' of New York's super-rich | Cities | The Guardian Jan 2019
"Any visitor to New York over the past few years will have witnessed this curious new breed of pencil-thin tower. ... These towers are not only the product of advances in construction technology – and a global surfeit of super-rich buyers – but a zoning policy that allows a developer to acquire unused airspace nearby, add it to their own lot, and erect a vast structure without any kind of public review process taking place."
TheGuardian  architecture  New-York 
february 2019
Tech Is Splitting the U.S. Work Force in Two - The New York Times, Feb 2019
"Despite all its shiny new high-tech businesses, the vast majority of new jobs are in workaday service industries, like health care, hospitality, retail and building services, where pay is mediocre."

"But automation is changing the nature of work, flushing workers without a college degree out of productive industries, like manufacturing and high-tech services, and into tasks with meager wages and no prospect for advancement. Automation is splitting the American labor force into two worlds. "

"Recent research has concluded that robots are reducing the demand for workers and weighing down wages, which have been rising more slowly than the productivity of workers. Some economists have concluded that the use of robots explains the decline in the share of national income going into workers’ paychecks over the last three decades."

"In a new study, David Autor of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Anna Salomons of Utrecht University found that over the last 40 years, jobs have fallen in every single industry that introduced technologies to enhance productivity. "
automation  technology  economics  NYTimes  employment  AI 
february 2019
Satellite Flat Panel Antennas: An $11 Billion Opportunity by 2028 - NSR Feb 2019
"NSR’s FPA4 finds aeronautical equipment will drive revenue growth for manufacturers, while fixed broadband applications on Non-GEO satellites will be the main volume market."

"The complexity of staying connected on the move is expected to keep antenna prices and revenues high over the next decade"

"While mobility drives revenues, fixed applications drive volume, with NSR expecting more than 1.4 million FPA terminals to ship for satellite broadband in 2028."
NSR  satellite  antennas 
february 2019
Are more MNOs starting to consider shared mobile networks? | PolicyTracker: Feb 2019
"An increasing number of mobile operators are proposing a pragmatic solution for the lack of investment in 5G and high network rollout costs: sharing networks. "

"Spain’s fourth largest mobile network operator (MNO) MásMóvil and regional network provider Euskaltel recently struck a deal to build a 5G pilot shared network."

"Last year, South Africa’s Vodacom and Telkom also reached a network sharing deal. The agreement will allow Telkom customers to roam on Vodacom’s 2G, 3G, and 4G networks from June 2019."

"But Mexico seems to be ahead of almost everyone, as only Rwanda has built a national wholesale mobile network before.

Red Compartida (‘shared network’ in Spanish)–which went live in March 2018–offers broadband to all of Mexico’s telecom carriers, in a move to expand mobile coverage, lower consumer prices and reduce 5G deployment costs."

"Although shared networks remain relatively rare, sharing infrastructure is becoming more common among mobile providers. O2 and Vodafone have just signed an extension to their current network sharing deal in the UK to cover 5G."
PolicyTracker  5G  infrastructure  infrastructure-sharing  cellular  Mexico  Spain  Rwanda  South-Africa 
february 2019
Ericsson: Expired certificate caused O2 and SoftBank outages | ZDNet Dec 2018
"An expired certificate was the cause of a data outage across O2 and SoftBank mobile services in the United Kingdom and Japan, respectively, Ericsson has revealed."

"The issue affected nodes in the core networks of customers using two software versions of the Serving GPRS Support Node - Mobility Management Entity (SGSN-MME)"

O2  Ericsson  cyber-spectrum  spectrum-vulnerability  outages 
february 2019
DHS admits rogue stingrays in Washington, DC. - TechSpot, Apr 2018
In a letter obtained by the Associated Press from the Department of Homeland Security to Senator Ron Wyden (D-Oregon), the United States government formally acknowledges they have found unauthorized IMSI catchers in different parts of Washington DC and possibly other areas of the country.

IMSI catchers, commonly known as stingrays, are most commonly used by the FBI and other law enforcement agencies around the country to locate a particular phone by essentially acting as a legitimate cell tower that the targeted phone attaches to. Stingrays also have the capability to intercept text messages and even phone calls.

"Overall, [DHS' National Protection and Programs Directorate] believes the malicious use of IMSI catchers is a real and growing risk," wrote acting undersecretary, Christopher Krebs.
TechSpot  cyber-spectrum  spectrum-vulnerability  cybersecurity  StingRay 
february 2019
AI Program Taught Itself How To 'Cheat' Its Human Creators | Zero Hedge
a columnist at TechCrunch highlighted a study that was presented at a prominent industry conference back in 2017. In the study, researchers explained how a Generative Adversarial Network - one of the two common varieties of machine learning agents - defied the intentions of its programmers and started spitting out synthetically engineered maps after being instructed to match aerial photographs with their corresponding street maps
AI  recognition  image-processing 
february 2019
Protecting your online privacy is tough—but here's a start — Quartz, Katarzyna Szymielewicz, Jan 2019
"Many decisions that affect your life are now dictated by the interpretation of your data profile rather than personal interactions. "

"The bad news is that when it comes to your digital profile, the data you choose to share is just the tip of an iceberg. We do not see the rest that is hidden under the water of the friendly interfaces of mobile apps and online services. The most valuable data about us is inferred beyond our control and without our consent. It’s these deeper layers we can’t control that really make the decisions, not us."

First layer: "data you feed into social media and mobile applications"

"The second layer is made of behavioral observations. ... It contains things that you probably do not want to share with everybody, like your real-time location and a detailed understanding of your intimate and professional relationships. "

"The third layer is composed of interpretations of the first and second. This layer infers conclusions about not just what we do but who we are based on our behavior and metadata. ... The task of these profile-mapping algorithms is to guess things that you are not likely to willingly reveal."

"Binding decisions made by banks, insurers, employers, and public officers are made by big data and algorithms, not people. "

"... China. As part of their “social credit score” system, every citizen is ranked on professional and personal interactions, online activity, and public appearances. Fail to pay a parking ticket? Look up banned topics online? Your actions in real life have lasting effects, such as your ability to buy train tickets or send your kids to good schools."
Quartz  privacy  data  surveillance  behavior  China 
february 2019
UK regulator seeks to make spectrum sharing easier in mobile bands | PolicyTracker: spectrum news, research and training
"UK regulator Ofcom has proposed new measures to facilitate spectrum sharing in mobile bands, authorising third parties to “exploit” unused awarded spectrum.

A recent consultation proposes a plan which would allow new users to lease prime mobile spectrum in locations where there would be no adverse impact on incumbent licensees, as Ofcom considers this will stimulate services useful to vertical industries and other use cases. "
PolicyTracker  Ofcom  spectrum-sharing  licensing  secondary-licenses 
february 2019
Mystery of Blocked Key Fobs at Parking Lot 'Likely' Solved, Canadian Ministry Says
In a Facebook post on Friday, Westview characterized the fob-blocking culprit as “faulty consumer electronic equipment stuck in transmit mode in the are.” The co-op added, “We want to communicate that this was NOT the result of any intentional criminal activity, or any other activity that was speculated.”
Gizmodo  interference  security  cyber-spectrum  cybersecurity  spectrum-vulnerability  automobile  hacks 
february 2019
The Woomera Manual | The Woomera Manual
"The Woomera Manual project is an international research project that is spearheaded by The University of Adelaide, The University of Exeter, the University Of Nebraska and the University of New South Wales - Canberra. Our mission is to develop a Manual that objectively articulates and clarifies existing international law applicable to military space operations."
space  law  military  defense 
february 2019
Cold comfort farms - Farming in Africa - 2013
"Yet Africa’s huge potential clashes with a brutal reality documented in a new report from the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), a think-tank with headquarters in Kenya. Take the cost of fertiliser, for instance. Farmers in America pay a price on delivery of $226 per tonne. But in Zambia the price is $414. Shipping costs explain only a small part of the difference. The rest is accounted for by port duties, bribes, storage fees, fuel costs, the importer’s mark-up and the credit charges racked up as the fertiliser makes its tortuous journey from port to farm."
farming  agriculture  TheEconomist  Africa 
february 2019
Privacy and Data Security Harms - Daniel Solove 20014
"I recently wrote a series of posts on LinkedIn exploring privacy and data security harms. I thought I’d share them here, so I am re-posting all four of these posts together in one rather long post."
law  privacy 
february 2019
The Evolving Nature of Consumer Privacy Harm - Kelsey Finch, Apr 2014
In the privacy world, few questions are as fundamental and pervasive as “what constitutes privacy harm?” Scholars continue to debate what it means to suffer a privacy injury and policymakers grapple with the parameters for a risk based framework, with some calling for reducing “the focus on data collection and the attending notice and consent requirements, and focus(ing) more on a practical assessment of the risks (and benefits) associated with data uses.”

"The definition of privacy harm has always been a moving target—and already this year the mark may have shifted again."
february 2019
Privacy and Data Security Violations: What’s the Harm? - Daniel Solove, Jun 2014
"Courts have struggled greatly with the issue of harms for data violations, and not much progress has been made. We desperately need a better understanding and approach to these harms.

I am going to explore the issue and explain why it is so difficult. Both theoretical and practical considerations are intertwined here, and there is tremendous incoherence in the law as well as fogginess in thinking about the issue of data harms."
LinkedIn  law  privacy 
february 2019
3G & 4G Networks Are Prone to Stingray Surveillance Attacks - Jul 2017
"3G and 4G LTE devices deployed worldwide have a critical security vulnerability that could be used by Stingray devices, security researchers revealed at the Black Hat Conference in Las Vegas. Researchers said all the modern and high-speed networks have a protocol flaw that enables mobile devices to connect with the cell operator, allowing attackers to track and monitor users."

"Many believe that the modern protocols, unlike 2G, protect users against easy-to-use tracking and surveillance. However, latest research reveals a flaw in the authentication and key agreement, which enables a phone to communicate securely with the user’s cell network."

"While this flaw doesn’t reportedly allow attackers to intercept calls or messages, it does enable them to monitor consumption patterns and track the phone location."
StingRay  IMSI-catcher  3G  4G  cellular  spectrum-vulnerability  cyber-spectrum  spoofing 
february 2019
Spoofing GPS Locations with low cost TX SDRs, RTL-SDR Sep 2015
At this years Defcon 2015 conference researcher Lin Huang from Qihoo 360 presented her work on spoofing GPS signals. Qihoo 360 is a Chinese security company producing antivirus software. Lin works at Qihoo as a security researcher where her main job is to prevent their antivirus software and users from becoming vulnerable to wireless attacks. Her research brought her to the realm of GPS spoofing, where she discovered how easy it was to use relatively low cost SDRs like a USRP B210/BladeRF/HackRF to emulate GPS signals which could allow a wireless attacker to manipulate the GPS on smartphones and cars.
RTL-SDR  Defcon  GPS  spoofing 
february 2019
New security flaw impacts 5G, 4G, and 3G telephony protocols | ZDNet, Jan 2019
"A new vulnerability has been discovered in the upcoming 5G cellular mobile communications protocol. Researchers have described this new flaw as more severe than any of the previous vulnerabilities that affected the 3G and 4G standards."

"Further, besides 5G, this new vulnerability also impacts the older 3G and 4G protocols, providing surveillance tech vendors with a new flaw they can abuse to create next-gen IMSI-catchers that work across all modern telephony protocols."

According to "a research paper named "New Privacy Threat on 3G, 4G, and Upcoming5G AKA Protocols," published last year. ..., the vulnerability impacts AKA, which stands for Authentication and Key Agreement, a protocol that provides authentication between a user's phone and the cellular networks."

"Instead of intercepting mobile traffic metadata, this new vulnerability reveals details about a user's mobile activity, such as the number of sent and received texts and calls, allowing IMSI-catcher operators to create profiles for each smartphone holder."

"For example, two other academic studies from French and Finnish researchers also found that IMSI-catcher attacks are still possible against the upgraded 5G-AKA protocol, despite 3GPP's claims."
ZDNet  cyber-spectrum  cybersecurity  spectrum-vulnerability  3G  4G  5G  StingRay  IMSI-catchers  3GPP 
february 2019
As more Africans reach for web, more leaders reach for ‘off’ switch - Jan 2019
"Internet shutdowns are a blunt instrument of repression, but as access to the web mushrooms across Africa, they’re also becoming a more popular one"

"Today, the internet is an increasingly essential part of the economies of many African countries, from mobile payments for daily groceries to e-commerce. But with that growth, it is also becoming a tool for social change, prompting governments to take increasingly bold moves to muzzle it – with sometimes unforeseen consequences."
CSMonitor  Africa  internet  censorship 
january 2019
Echodyne gets OK to conduct drone detection at Super Bowl | FierceWireless Jan 2019
The FCC has given Echodyne the go-ahead to operate two low powered fixed radar transmitters in the immediate vicinity of Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta during Super Bowl LIII on Sunday.

The radars are intended to be used as part of a drone detection system that will be installed at the perimeter of the stadium to alert security personnel, including federal officers, of any unidentified drone activity during the big game, according to material the company submitted to the FCC.
FierceWireless  FCC  Echodyne  drones  detection  radar 
january 2019
Telesat signs New Glenn multi-launch agreement with Blue Origin for LEO missions - Jan 2019
"Canadian fleet operator Telesat has agreed to launch satellites for its future low-Earth-orbit broadband constellation on multiple New Glenn missions, Blue Origin announced Jan. 31.

The agreement, for an unspecified number of launches and satellites, makes Telesat the fifth customer to sign up to use the reusable launcher, which is slated for a maiden flight in 2021. "

"Blue Origin already has eight other New Glenn missions in backlog: one each for Paris-based Eutelsat, Sky Perfect JSAT of Japan and Thai startup Mu Space, plus five launches for low-Earth-orbit megaconstellation company OneWeb. "

"Telesat is preparing a constellation of roughly 300 communications satellites for global internet connectivity services. The satellite operator plans to select a manufacturer — either Airbus Defence and Space or a team comprised of Thales Alenia Space and Space Systems Loral — later this year. "

"In a separate Jan. 31 announcement, Telesat said Loon has agreed to deliver a network operating system design that Telesat can use to support its LEO constellation. Loon, a subsidiary of Google parent company Alphabet, said last fall it sees non-geostationary satellite operators as customers for a variation of the software-defined network it uses to deliver mobile connectivity via high-altitude balloons."

"The rocket can carry 45 metric tons to low Earth orbit, and features a payload fairing twice the size of any other rocket on the market, according to Blue Origin."
space  satellite  SpaceNews  launch  BlueOrigin  Telesat  Loon  Alphabet  Google 
january 2019
GNSS Interference and Spoofing Detection | BroadSense | Talen-X
Via Dale, Jan 2019

"BroadSense is a GPS interference and detection sensor designed to detect jamming and spoofing. Utilizing sophisticated GNSS receivers and 75+ advanced algorithms, BroadSense can detect when the GPS signal or GPS spectrum is compromised."
Talen-X  GPS  jamming  spoofing 
january 2019
Biodiversity thrives in Ethiopia’s church forests - Nature, Jan 2019
"Ecologists are working with the nation’s Tewahedo churches to preserve these pockets of lush, wild habitat. "

Lovely full-screen photos
NatureJournal  Ethiopia  forestry  ecology  conservation  photography  religion  churches 
january 2019
Germany Nearly Catches Korea as Innovation Champ; U.S. Rebounds - Bloomberg, Jan 2019
"South Korea retained the global crown in the 2019 Bloomberg Innovation Index, though improvements by Germany in research and education brought Europe’s largest economy to near-parity in the annual ranking. The U.S. moved up to eighth place, a year after cracks in education scores pushed it out of the top 10 for the first time."
innovation  Bloomberg  South-Korea  Korea  Germany 
january 2019
Massive new study traces how corporations use charitable donations to tilt regulations in their favor - The Washington Post Jan 2019
new research from Marianne Bertrand at the University of Chicago and others

"The data set compiled by the researchers demonstrates three crucial findings: First, after a firm donates to a nonprofit organization, that group becomes more likely to comment on rules that the firm has also commented on. Second, the organization’s comments in those cases have more similarities with the firm’s comments than with comments from other nonprofit organizations not receiving money from the firm. And finally, when a firm and its grantees comment on a rule together, regulators' final remarks on the rule are more likely to be in line with the firm’s comments on the rule."

"To draw these conclusions, Bertrand and her colleagues first identified 629 charitable foundations operated by 474 firms appearing on the Fortune 500 or Standard & Poor’s 500 composite index lists at any point from 1995 to 2016. Using IRS data, they then identified all 225,180 nonprofit entities receiving gifts of greater than $5,000 from these charitable foundations from 1998 to 2015. Next they pulled the complete set of public comments on proposed rules submitted to between 2003 and 2016. They were then able to identify not only when individual corporations commented on a proposed rule, but also when nonprofit organizations that firm had donated to commented on the same rule."

"They found that when a firm donates to a nonprofit group, it’s associated with a two- to four-fold increase in the likelihood that the nonprofit group will comment on the same proposed rule as the firm. "

"researchers found that when a nonprofit organization comments on a rule that a donor company also comments on, the language of the comments tends to mirror each other. "
WashingtonPost  regulation  lobbying  charity  nonprofit 
january 2019
Mass GPS Spoofing Attack in Black Sea? Jul 2017
"The RNT Foundation has received numerous anecdotal reports of maritime problems with AIS and GPS in Russian waters, though this is the first publicly available, well-document account, of which we are aware.

Russia has very advanced capabilities to disrupt GPS. Over 250,000 cell towers in Russia have been equipped with GPS jamming devices as a defense against attack by U.S. missiles. And there have been press reports of Russian GPS jamming in both Moscow and the Ukraine. In fact Russia has boasted that its capabilities “make aircraft carriers useless,” and the U.S. Director of National Intelligence recently issued a report that stated that Russia and others were focusing on improving their capability to jam U.S. satellite systems."
GPS  spoofing  Russia  Dana-Goward 
january 2019
China tries to control expectations of 5G ahead of rollout - Asia Times Jan 2-19
• “Huawei founder urges patience, tolerance if initial 5G launch fails to live up to the hype”

• “On Monday, party mouthpieces the People’s Daily and the Global Times ran op-eds in a bid to manage people’s expectations, saying that the nation’s 5G deployment would be gradual and that most people would have to stick to the current 4G technology longer than they might think.”

• “Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei was realistic in a recent interview, saying that many could have overrated his company’s capabilities as well as its 5G technologies and hardware.”
AsiaTimes  Huawei  5g  hype 
january 2019
Brussels urges EU member states to accelerate 5G spectrum assignments | PolicyTracker: spectrum news, research and training
"The head of DG Connect, which is part of the European Commission, has branded Europe’s current assignment of 5G spectrum “unacceptable” and urged countries to make more frequencies available. Roberto Viola used his keynote speech at this year’s European 5G conference to reiterate the Commission’s position on 5G and argue that member states need to move faster in assigning spectrum."

Viola quote: “The situation in the 700 MHz band is quite impressive; it’s equally impressive in the 3.5 GHz band, but it is devastating in the 26 GHz band. This is not acceptable.”

"The comments were made in the wake of the adoption of the European Electronic Communications Code, which turned 2020 targets into a legal obligation. All EU countries must now clear and assign 5G pioneer frequency bands (700 MHz, 3.5 GHz and 26 GHz) by the end of 2020."

"Moreover, Viola said he believed the “5G hype is justified” because it will become “the glue” which holds together all future technologies such as artificial intelligence, blockchain and advanced computing."

"Chinese manufacturer Huawei has again asked for patience and tolerance if initial 5G launches don’t live up to expectations."
PolicyTracker  EU  EC  Spectrum  5G  EuropeanCommission  Huawei 
january 2019
Telecoms, media and digital economy prediction trends 2019 - AnalysysMason Jan 2019
Here are the headline predictions for 2019 from Analysys Mason Research:

5G: there will be many commercial 5G launches but consumers will not notice
IoT: the market for IoT connectivity will continue to develop and new models will appear
Enterprises: operators will buy IT operations to expand portfolios and there will be many SD-WAN launches
Small and medium-sized businesses: this market will streamline with DaaS and cloud apps
Homes: the battle for control of the emerging home ecosystem will intensify
Digital transformation: operators will offer mobile apps for customer care, and will push into edge computing and network slicing
Artificial intelligence: automation will lead operators to cut jobs and MSPs will capitalise on the needs of SMBs
Investor value: business simplification initiatives will enable telecoms operators worldwide to reduce headcount
AnalysysMason  prediction  IoT  5G  AI 
january 2019
Working with the Stuck Places | Ajahn Sucitto
via Linda Chang, Jan 2019

Buddhism  meditation  psychology  Ajahn-Sucitto 
january 2019
Wyler claims breakthrough in low-cost antenna for OneWeb, other satellite systems - Jan 2019
"OneWeb founder Greg Wyler says a self-funded side project of his has developed an antenna module costing $15, paving the way for user terminals priced between $200 and $300.
Wyler, in an interview, said he invested just under $10 million into Wafer LLC, a Danvers, Massachusetts-based company that has created a prototype antenna. After three to four years of effort and more than 500 iterations, the antenna could be commercially available as soon as 2020, he said. "

"Wyler said the Wafer antenna is designed first to work in Ku-band — the same frequency as OneWeb’s first satellites — but could also work in Ka-, X-, V- and other bands with little change in cost. "
satellite  SpaceNews  antennas 
january 2019
'The goal is to automate us': welcome to the age of surveillance capitalism | Technology | The Guardian, John Naughton, Jan 2019
"Shoshana Zuboff’s new book is a chilling exposé of the business model that underpins the digital world. Observer tech columnist John Naughton explains the importance of Zuboff’s work and asks the author 10 key questions"

"The headline story is that it’s not so much about the nature of digital technology as about a new mutant form of capitalism that has found a way to use tech for its purposes. The name Zuboff has given to the new variant is “surveillance capitalism”. It works by providing free services that billions of people cheerfully use, enabling the providers of those services to monitor the behaviour of those users in astonishing detail – often without their explicit consent."

Zuboff: “Surveillance capitalism unilaterally claims human experience as free raw material for translation into behavioural data. Although some of these data are applied to service improvement, the rest are declared as a proprietary behavioural surplus, fed into advanced manufacturing processes known as ‘machine intelligence’, and fabricated into prediction products that anticipate what you will do now, soon, and later. Finally, these prediction products are traded in a new kind of marketplace that I call behavioural futures markets. Surveillance capitalists have grown immensely wealthy from these trading operations, for many companies are willing to lay bets on our future behaviour.”

Change in scale drives change in kind: "Thus Google decided that it would digitise and store every book ever printed, regardless of copyright issues. Or that it would photograph every street and house on the planet without asking anyone’s permission."

"The combination of state surveillance and its capitalist counterpart means that digital technology is separating the citizens in all societies into two groups: the watchers (invisible, unknown and unaccountable) and the watched. "

"Nearly every product or service that begins with the word “smart” or “personalised”, every internet-enabled device, every “digital assistant”, is simply a supply-chain interface for the unobstructed flow of behavioural data on its way to predicting our futures in a surveillance economy."

"Once we searched Google, but now Google searches us. Once we thought of digital services as free, but now surveillance capitalists think of us as free."

"The tech leaders desperately want us to believe that technology is the inevitable force here, and their hands are tied. But there is a rich history of digital applications before surveillance capitalism that really were empowering and consistent with democratic values. Technology is the puppet, but surveillance capitalism is the puppet master."
TheGuardian  Shoshana-Zuboff  surveillance  capitalism  technology  interviews  quotations  books  behavioral-advertising 
january 2019
Review: The Helm personal email server puts you in control of your data - Mashable Jan 2019
The device, a sleek looking triangle that could be confused for a modern-art inspired paper weight, is a personal email server for your home. Once properly set up, it allows the user to send and receive email as they might normally — from their smartphone or computer — with an important bonus: the data is stored in your home or office (there is an encrypted offsite backup for those worried about losing all their email in a house fire). That's right, with Helm you both own and control your emails.
email  tools  Mashable 
january 2019
PROMETHEUS - - Greek Titan God of Forethought, Creator of Mankind
= short summary
= family
= encyclopedia entry from "Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology"
= alternate name spellings and epithets
= classical literature quotes from (translated) original sources
= some nice images of vase painting
Greece  Greek-mythology  mythology  Prometheus 
january 2019
Japanese MNO says many partners misunderstand 5G | PolicyTracker Jan 2019
"Speaking at the European 5G conference, Takehiro Nakamura, senior vice president and general manager for the company’s 5G laboratories, said it was important that the telecoms industry offers a realistic view of early 5G deployments."

"According to Nakamura, who presented information to delegates on all the trials NTT has been involved in, there are two major misconceptions: coverage and performance"
PolicyTracker  5G  NTT-DoCoMo  hype 
january 2019
Can Satellite Broadband Support the Streaming Wave? - NSR Jan 2019
Nice chart of tech vs. customer bandwidth expectations

"Today, a mid-range satellite Internet plan is able to satisfy users generating traffic from Web browsing and Social Media, but data caps are still too low to support multiple hours of streaming per day. Consequently, satellite is unable to engage the mainstream consumer, leading to slow take up rates and high levels of churn."

"At capacity prices of $200 USD/Mbps/month, the plan for a $50-subscriber would be capped at ~10 GB, insufficient to satisfy today’s video-centric customers. If the industry wants to unlock the potential of this market, capacity prices need to decline below the $100 USD/Mbps/month threshold, where data allowances could grow rapidly and boost subscriber satisfaction."
NSR  satellite  broadband 
january 2019
APOD: 2019 January 23 - Orion over the Austrian Alps
Explanation: Do you recognize this constellation? Through the icicles and past the mountains is Orion, one of the most identifiable star groupings on the sky and an icon familiar to humanity for over 30,000 years. Orion has looked pretty much the same during the past 50,000 years and should continue to look the same for many thousands of years into the future. Orion is quite prominent in the sky this time of year, a recurring sign of (modern) winter in Earth's northern hemisphere and summer in the south. Pictured, Orion was captured recently above the Austrian Alps in a composite of seven images taken by the same camera in the same location during the same night. Below and slightly to the right of Orion's three-star belt is the Orion Nebula, while the four bright stars surrounding the belt are, clockwise from the upper left, Betelgeuse, Bellatrix, Rigel, and Saiph.
APOD  astronomy  photography  constellations  mythology 
january 2019
Europe hoping to overcome C-band satellite interference | PolicyTracker, Jan 2019
There has been a clear push by national regulators across Europe to release 3.5 GHz spectrum. However, mobile deployments in the region’s primary capacity band for 5G could be at risk due to potential satellite interference from neighbouring countries and military services.
C-band  3.6GHz  5G  Interference  PolicyTracker  Finland  Netherlands  satellite  military 
january 2019
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