This Week in Blockchain 01.04.19

Cyber Blues

We always hope that a new year will wipe the slate clean, but over at Techcrunch, the situation regarding cybersecurity has been reversed. Security editor Zack Whitaker expects there will be more data leaks and exposure this year, not less. While basic security can be initiated by creating stronger passwords, breaches are a little hard to protect against—though in no way impossible.

Whitaker also speculates on California’s consumer privacy law, which many tech companies fought hard against. He continues,

The law will allow authorities to impose fines on companies that don’t comply or which violate the rules. It’s particularly important for consumers, given most of the world’s largest tech companies have their headquarters in the state.

We’ll see how their efforts go, considering they’re lobbying hard in Washington to overturn this law. Yet as George Gilder writes in Life After Google, any company that doesn’t consider security the top issue is bound to eventually fail. If Gilder’s prediction is right, there might be a lot of carnage in Silicon Valley soon.

Or, maybe, companies can take security more seriously. Check out RCast 1 with Chris Boscolo of lifeID to hear more about how blockchain can help shift this paradigm and make sure to listen to RCast 13 next week with RChain portfolio company, Rubica, which is leading the charge in digital privacy and security rights.

Smarter Cities

Humans collectively produce two billion pounds of trash every year, according to the World Bank. As our friends at Augmate write, some cities devote up to half their annual budget to dealing with garbage. Augmate, an IoT and wearables management company, believes well-placed sensors can help local governments better manage this issue.

At this point in time, the most common technology employed by municipalities is the use of IoT sensors placed in public trash cans to measure the amount of trash in the can. This data is then transferred to the cloud, where it is processed and analyzed. This allows the optimization of pick-up times and route planning for trash collection. Public cellular networks are widely used for data collection, but Wi-Fi and radio frequency mesh are also available.

Smart bins utilizing solar power to continuously compact trash is another smart move cities are making. Not only does this make collection fleets easier to manage by reducing workload, the installation of such bins reduces CO2 emissions with fewer trucks on the roads.

Electric Revolution

Tesloop has logged nearly one million miles on their three Model X’s so far. While Tesla had a rude awakening in the new year, those in it for the long run are optimistic of what’s in store in 2019. This deep dive into product launches and development offer a roadmap to the company’s continual climb. Predictions include:

  • As many as 380,000 Model 3 vehicles in 2019
  • The unveiling of the Model Y
  • Potentially seeing the first Tesla pickups
  • Significant upgrades to the Model S and Model X
  • Potential production start of the Semi
  • The Supercharger reaching a greater than 200 kW charge rate
  • The launch of the Megapack

Make sure to check out Tesloop and learn more about Tesla technology here:

Breaking Out

Could the breakout moment for blockchain occur in 2019? According to Forbes, yes. Members of the expert panel picked blockchain as the #1 and blockchain as a service as the #2 breakout technologies of this year. Nacho De Marco of BairesDev writes,

The blockchain is not as revolutionary as artificial intelligence (AI), or as intuitive and user-friendly as voice control, but it will transform the way we handle finance, real estate, Internet of Things (IoT), the supply chain of most industries and much more. That’s why governments are rushing to incorporate it in every sense they can; they know the high cost of falling behind on this.

While Danny Allan of Veeam Software adds in,

In 2019 we will begin to see the first practical implementations of blockchain, beyond the cryptocurrency use case, and unlock distributed marketplaces and computing systems that leverage communities for sharing of resources in both a cost- and resource-efficient manner. These technologies will be enabled through the blockchain-as-a-service platforms being unveiled by IBM, Azure and AWS.

Closing Thought

“If we continue to develop our technology without wisdom or prudence, our servant may prove to be our executioner.” — Omar N. Bradley, US General of the Army (1893-1981)