March 15, 2021 Website: Trublo.eu
If you want to participate in this round, there is not much time left: The deadline for open call #1 is next Friday, March 19, 2021, at 17:00 CET. Based on many interactions with potential participants we are looking forward to all the proposals currently prepared. Apply to Open Call #1 until March 19,2021
Updates this week:
In Germany a tender to create a digital vaccination certificate has been awarded to a group of three companies: IBM, Bechtle and notably a blockchain/security startup from Cologne called Ubirch. The tender is worth €2,7 million. A working solution based on the technology from Ubirch had been trialed in a district in southern Germany.
A key feature of the regional trial was to issue a physical card, similar to a credit card but displaying a QR code. Given the first vaccines were provided to older people, the card proved popular. The QR code encodes personal information such as the name, ID and the details of the vaccination, and anyone scanning the code sees the information. The data is not saved elsewhere and the vaccine recipient can store the data on a mobile phone. When the QR code is created, a hash or fingerprint of the data is stored on a blockchain. Link
This means: There will be a big, public test of whether a solution to shelter personal information based on blockchain will work and performs well in terms of privacy. If this works, it will be a reference for the future projects.
Related: YouTube says it has removed 30.000 videos with COVID misinformation. Link
The first-ever Christies auction of digital art resulted in record prices being paid for digital art pieces or so-called NFTs (non-fungible tokens). One work by the artist Beeple fetched the remarkable auction price of $69 million. All of sudden a piece of digital art is on a price level equivalent to most expensive traditional art.
Why this is relevant:
On the one hand, any emerging approach or platform which helps to determine fair and regular prices for creative work should be welcomed, specifically if the approach quality is awarded. Writers, photographers, makers of videos are in need of a better working system.
On the other hand, it is doubtful whether the current set-up of NFTs is in any way sustainable. It looks like an abberation, but not as the starting point for something stable. Reactions are accordingly very mixed, from jubilant to disbelief and doubt. There are many critical voices warning that this nascent market is just a bubble.
The current market is driven by a small group of buyers who can afford to pay high prices based on fortunes made as early cryptocurrency users.
Another negative observation is that NFTs are “horrible for the environment”. A surprisingly big amount of energy is needed to create them.
Meet the innovators who are creating new digital media offerings, with new insights, for new audiences. The list includes hard charging investigative teams like “Bellingcat”, a verification and investigation platform as well as new approaches to pan-European reporting such as “Are we Europe” or “Forum.eu”.
The full list is inspiring to read and follow up. Invest a bit of time to check out the newcomers if you are interested in where EU journalism is heading next.
The illegal use of music for videos has been a legal battlefield. But now, startups show how to turn existing demand into a market. Epidemic is just one of several similar offerings in this niche market. And internet niche markets tend to be bigger than one would expect. LINK
Netflix has started to check whether single-user accounts are actually used by just one person. Users who have so far “shared” an account might find this message on their login screen soon:
“If you don’t live with the owner of this account, you need your own account to keep watching”.
No direct connection to trusted content, but an indirect one. How do you check accounts without violating GDPR rules? Here is an example: When different insurance companies are tricked into paying for one damage the practice is called “double dipping”. Such duplicate payouts are quite common because so far they are hard to detect. Now a platform called “ClaimShare” offers a way to exchange data on cases, while being GDPR compliant. LINK
Background: Ethereum is the biggest platform besides Bitcoin, often described as an alternative specifically for business use and smart contracts.
After a voting, there are now preparations for the biggest update in years, expected for June 2021. The changes will be made against opposition from the miners who are part of Ethereum. Reason: Transaction fees will be restructured, the goal is to make usage of Ethereum cheaper per transaction. LINK
In the US, the Defense Advanced Research Agency (DARPA) awarded four research teams multimillion-dollar contracts to figure out how to build hardware and software stacks capable of cutting down the amount of time and power required to perform computations on encrypted data. The goal is to enable access to the data, but without compromising data security. LINK
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