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Archive for the ‘policy’ category: Page 3

Aug 26, 2019

Uh-oh: Silicon Valley is building a Chinese-style social credit system

Posted by in categories: government, law, policy

In China, scoring citizens’ behavior is official government policy. U.S. companies are increasingly doing something similar, outside the law.

[Images: Rawf8/iStock; zhudifeng/iStock].

Aug 23, 2019

Bernie Sanders Wants to Ban Facial Recognition for Policing, I Disagree

Posted by in categories: information science, law enforcement, policy, robotics/AI

Under his plan, “Justice and Safety for All,” Bernie Sanders wants to ban facial recognition software for policing. As a supporter of Sanders, I’m going to have to respectfully disagree. Here’s why…


Last Sunday, presidential-hopeful Bernie Sanders released on his website what is arguably one of the most extensive plans for law enforcement oversight and criminal justice overhaul that the United States has ever seen. As a progressive, myself, and supporter of Sanders during his primary run, I fully endorse everything that’s been laid out in this plan— that is, except for one minor policy.

The plan, titled “Justice and Safety for All,” calls to “Ban the use of facial recognition software for policing.” It also calls for a “moratorium on the use of the algorithmic risk assessment tools in the criminal justice system until an audit is completed,” whereby the audit would “ensure these tools do not have any implicit biases that lead to unjust or excessive sentences.”

Continue reading “Bernie Sanders Wants to Ban Facial Recognition for Policing, I Disagree” »

Aug 17, 2019

Gut Microbiota and Extreme Longevity

Posted by in categories: life extension, policy

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Aug 14, 2019

Your Doorway to Japan

Posted by in categories: policy, quantum physics, space

With the launch of its Quantum Science Satellite, nicknamed Mozi, China took the lead in implementing quantum-encoded communications. In the first article of a series about China’s ambitious space program, space policy expert Aoki Setsuko explains the significance of this development.

Aug 12, 2019

FDA announces new policy framework for development of regenerative medicine products

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, genetics, life extension, policy

Today the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced a comprehensive policy framework for the development and oversight of regenerative medicine products, including novel cellular therapies.

The framework — outlined in a suite of four guidance documents — builds upon the FDA’s existing risk-based regulatory approach to more clearly describe what products are regulated as drugs, devices, and/or biological products. Further, two of the guidance documents propose an efficient, science-based process for helping to ensure the safety and effectiveness of these therapies, while supporting development in this area. The suite of guidance documents also defines a risk-based framework for how the FDA intends to focus its enforcement actions against those products that raise potential significant safety concerns. This modern framework is intended to balance the agency’s commitment to safety with mechanisms to drive further advances in regenerative medicine so innovators can bring new, effective therapies to patients as quickly and safely as possible. The policy also delivers on important provisions of the 21st Century Cures Act.

We’re at the beginning of a paradigm change in medicine with the promise of being able to facilitate regeneration of parts of the human body, where cells and tissues can be engineered to grow healthy, functional organs to replace diseased ones; new genes can be introduced into the body to combat disease; and adult stem cells can generate replacements for cells that are lost to injury or disease. This is no longer the stuff of science fiction. This is the practical promise of modern applications of regenerative medicine.

Jul 23, 2019

India’s Chandrayaan-2 moon mission lifts off a week after aborted launch

Posted by in categories: policy, space travel

It will take more than six weeks to travel about 238,600 miles (384,000km) to the moon. The four-tonne spacecraft has a lunar orbiter, a lander named Vikram after the founder of Isro, and a rover. The rover, named Pragyan, which means “wisdom” in Sanskrit, will spend two weeks traversing the moon’s surface. The six-wheeled vehicle, which will be deployed in early September, will collect crucial information about the mineral and chemical composition of the lunar surface, and search for water.


It was, he added, a “fully indigenous” project, using Indian technology.

Chandrayaan-2 aims to become the first mission to conduct a surface landing on the lunar south pole region, where it will collect crucial information about the moon’s composition. It would be India’s first surface landing on the moon – a feat previously achieved by only Russia, the US and China.

Continue reading “India’s Chandrayaan-2 moon mission lifts off a week after aborted launch” »

Jul 18, 2019

TEMPEST: To prescribe policies, procedures, and responsibilities for the Department of the Army (DA) to evaluate and control compromising emanations (TEMPEST)

Posted by in categories: policy, security

The procedures implement national-level and DOD policies to protect information from foreign intelligence collection. It requires that the application of TEMPEST countermeasures be proportional and appropriate to the threat and potential damage to national security. It explains the selection, training, utilization, and operational requirements for appointment of an Army certified TEMPEST Technical Authority (CTTA) and provides Army protected distribution policy.

Jul 14, 2019

Can I Check Web Sites Visited by my Kids/Staff?

Posted by in categories: computing, internet, policy, privacy, security, software, surveillance

Early this morning, I was asked this question at Quora. It’s a pretty basic request of network administrators, including parents, schools and anyone who administers a public, sensitive or legally exposed WiFi hot spot.

Is there a quick and easy way to view, log, or otherwise monitor the web sites visited by people on your home or office network?

Yes. It’s free and and it is pretty easy to do.

It gets a bit trickier, if the individual on your network is using a VPN service that they have configured on their device.[1] A VPN does not stop you from logging their browsing, but all of their activity will point to the VPN address instead of the site that they are actually visiting. In that case, there is another way to monitor their activity. See note #1, below.

Continue reading “Can I Check Web Sites Visited by my Kids/Staff?” »

Jul 13, 2019

New study: How much do climate fluctuations matter for global crop yields?

Posted by in categories: climatology, policy

The El Niño-Southern Oscillation has been responsible for widespread, simultaneous crop failures in recent history, according to a new study from researchers at Columbia University’s International Research Institute for Climate and Society, the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and other partners. This finding runs counter to a central pillar of the global agriculture system, which assumes that crop failures in geographically distant breadbasket regions such as the United States, China and Argentina are unrelated. The results also underscore the potential opportunity to manage such climate risks, which can be predicted using seasonal climate forecasts.

The study, published in Science Advances, is the first to provide estimates of the degree to which different modes of such as ENSO cause volatility in global and regional production of corn, wheat and soy. Such variability caused nearly 18 percent volatility in global corn production from 1980 to 2010, for example.

“Global agriculture counts on the strong likelihood that poor production in one part of the world will be made up for by good production elsewhere,” said Weston Anderson, a postdoctoral research scientist at the International Research Institute for Climate and Society and lead author on the study.

Jul 8, 2019

What would a synthetic connectome look like?

Posted by in category: policy

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