With CRISPR, dual-core processors can be made inside human cells

Cells are like logic gates, reacting to external stimuli according to pre-determined metabolic responses. For better or worse, scientists at ETH Zurich are putting them to use in the service of computing.  

CRISPR used to build dual-core computers inside human cells

"Tapping into these natural processes to build logic circuits is a key goal of synthetic biology. In this case, the ETH Zurich team found a way to slot dual-core processors into human cells by first modifying the CRISPR gene-editing tool. Normally, this system uses guide RNA sequences to target specific DNA segments in the genome, then make precise edits. For this project though, the team created a special version of the Cas9 enzyme that can act as a processor."

Other News

Big corporates back crypto 'plumbing' despite currency caution

"Major finance and tech firms are pouring money into startups building technology to develop the crypto market, even though they’re steering clear of the volatile currencies themselves. Venture capital investments in crypto and blockchain startups that included funds from corporates have raced to $850 million so far this year, data compiled by PitchBook for Reuters shows. The 13 deals put the flows on track for a second straight annual record."

PayPal Wins Patent for Way to Defend Against Crypto Ransomware

"PayPal, therefore, is looking to prevent such a situation with a method involving detecting a first copy of original content that has been loaded into a cache of a computer system, retaining in the cache a second copy of that file and comparing the two to determine if the altered content represents an encrypted version of the original content. It then prevents the original content from being deleted if the altered content has been encrypted."

Kabul, Tunis in sovereign crypto bond race

"Khalil Sediq, Governor at the Central Bank of Afghanistan, told Asia Times at the event that the country was seriously considering issuing a sovereign crypto bond that uses blockchain technology as an instrument to raise some US$5.8 billion in needed private-sector investment for the country’s critical mining, energy and agriculture sectors. Sediq went onto say that Bitcoin could be coupled with a form of metals future, such as lithium, and noted that the value of Afghanistan’s mineral reserves was now estimated at more than $3 trillion."

AMD Navi release date, GPU specs, rumours, and performance

"The AMD Navi graphics card rumour mill is grinding away, even more so now the launch is surely just a few months away – potentially with a July/August release window. These new GPUs, based on the new AMD Navi architecture, will be our first genuinely new Radeon chip design since Vega limped onto our desktops a year and a half ago. Though that architecture has at least been given a fresh lick of paint with the AMD Radeon VII gaming GPU."

Binance Reveals Timeline for BNB Cryptocurrency’s Move Off Ethereum

"Announced Thursday, the exchange said it will activate BNB on the new network on April 23, after which holders of the token are encouraged to migrate their balances to the new network. Old ethereum-based tokens will be destroyed as new BNB tokens are created on Binance Chain, the company said, in order to maintain a constant supply across both networks. The initial total supply for BNB tokens will be 200 million, 48 million of which will be frozen and 11,654,398 of which will be burned on Binance Chain."

New French law allows crypto investments in major retirement savings plans

"The French financial publication Les Echos is reporting that a new law passed on April 11 allows French savers to invest in cryptocurrencies in their 'assurance vie' life insurance accounts, which are used mainly as medium- to long-term savings vehicles aimed at retirement. The French 'assurance décès' policies are more traditional life insurance policies that pay out upon the holder’s death."

Japan to require crypto exchanges to bolster internal oversight: source

"The move by the Financial Services Agency (FSA) highlights the difficulties in ensuring security of virtual currencies, as well as the broader risks for Japan as it aims to leverage the fintech industry to stimulate economic growth. Following a series security lapses at exchanges last year, the FSA restricted use of less-secure 'hot wallets' - where virtual currencies are stored on platforms directly connected to the internet - prompting exchanges to shift to 'cold wallets,' storage devices that are not connected to the internet and therefore more secure."

Belarus President Proposes Giant Data Centre for Bitcoin Mining

"The Belarus president is planning to establish the mining farm data center directly adjacent to the Belarusian nuclear power plant. The plant is likely to go into full-fledged operations by the end of 2019. Lukashenko has promised that he will reserve some space in the plant for Bitcoin mining and selling activities. ... The new measures indicate that the Belarusian president wants to cement the country’s position and image in being the promoter of innovative technology. The formation of the Hi-Tech Park is seen as the country’s efforts to reduce their economic dependence on oil and gas."

On usability of blockchain applications

"However, as of today, the majority of internet users do not use blockchain, and if we want it to change, we need to make the onboarding for them as streamlined as possible. In the ideal world developing a decentralized application running on a blockchain shall be no harder than building a nodeJS application, and once such an application is deployed, a user that never used blockchain before should be able to just open it in a browser and start interacting with it."


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