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Archivo del Autor: Belen De Leon

One of Facebook’s most senior engineers just became Director of Engineering, Blockchain

It was already known that Facebook had set up a group within the company to “explore” blockchain tech, headed up by long time Messenger chief David Marcus. However, the latest executive reshuffle appears to point to the social networking behemoth getting more serious about developing on top of blockchain technology.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Evan Cheng, a director of engineering at Facebook, has moved to the position of Director of Engineering, Blockchain. A well-respected “low level” computer engineer, he was previously responsible for heading up Programming Languages & Runtimes at the company, a position he held for nearly three years.

Prior to that, Cheng spent nearly ten years working at Apple, most recently holding the position of Senior Manager, Low Level Tools. He also worked on compilation technology and other back end engineering.

He also tweets about blockchain and is reportedly an advisor to a number of blockchain startups/projects, including Zilliqa and ChainLink.

“It means it’s not just an exploratory project,” is how one source who tracks the blockchain space speculatively framed Cheng’s move to Facebook’s blockchain team. His reasoning was that in recruiting Cheng (who knows more than a thing or two about performance and scalability) to the blockchain group, it signals the importance of the project.

Meanwhile, Marcus and Cheng aren’t the only Facebook execs to be have been tasked with building out the social network’s burgeoning blockchain work. In a recent executive reshuffle, we reported that Instagram’s former VP of Product Kevin Weil has taken up the position of VP of Product, Blockchain at Facebook. See TechCrunch’s in-depth analysis of those moves and how Facebook could utilise blockchain.

Update: Facebook has confirmed Evan Cheng’s new position as Director of Engineering, Blockchain.


Source: TechCrunch

Sydney Airport launches face scan check-in trials

Australia is a step closer to replacing passport check-ins with more face scans. The plan, which was announced early last year, is being trialed by Qantas on passengers for select flights into the Sydney Airport starting this week. The move is an attempt to replace the “inconvenience” of relying on more traditional paper passports.

“We’ve worked with Qantas from the outset and are delighted to be partnering with them as we trial this technology,” Sydney Airport CEO Geoff Culbert said in a statement provided to the press. “In the future, there will be no more juggling passports and bags at check-in and digging through pockets or smartphones to show your boarding pass,” he added. “Your face will be your passport and your boarding pass at every step of the process.”

It’s still very early stages in a process that isn’t exactly being rolled out overnight. After all, implementing such technology for Sydney’s 43 million annual passengers is pretty large undertaking, even without myriad security and privacy concerns to contend with.

Some are understandably skeptical about such implementations on-behalf of the government and other large institutions with underlying security concerns.

“[I]f the security rationale is about preventing terrorism, why not extend it to other locations like shopping malls, public squares or stadiums like the MCG. It could be anywhere that people gather together,” University of Canberra assistant professor Bruce Baer Arnold said in a statement to The Financial Review. “The concern there is that this is ultimately disproportionate. Biometrics are very powerful and can produce real social benefits, or it can product real harm. Just because you have a hammer, doesn’t mean everything is a nail.”

To start with, the technology will be utilized for select international flights, to help automate check-in, boarding, lounge access and bag drop. Moving forward, the airport also hopes to implement it for mobile check-in and customs processing.


Source: TechCrunch

Apple will reportedly offer 2018 iPhone in 5 color options – CNET

But you’ll probably cover it with a case anyway.
Source: CNET

Article 13: Europe's hotly debated revamp of copyright law, explained – CNET

The EU’s proposed European Copyright Directive is being called a war on memes. Here’s why.
Source: CNET

Pre-Prime day deal: Amazon Fire TV 4K streamer from QVC for $45 – CNET

Less than two weeks ahead of Prime Day, the shopping network has a better price than Amazon itself.
Source: CNET

The Boat Circling the Planet on Renewable Energy and Hydrogen

The French-built Energy Observer is on a years-long, 50-country tour of the planet, spreading the gospel of fossil fuel–free ocean travel.
Source: Wired

Huawei MateBook X Pro Review: About That Webcam…

Huawei’s MateBook X Pro is an incredible laptop with one unforgivable flaw. Our full review.
Source: Wired

These are the semi-trucks of the future video – CNET

These trucks are going to change the face of the trucking industry. Convince me otherwise.
Source: CNET

HP peps up printing with social photos, AR and even customized hotel rooms – CNET

HP printer chief Enrique Lores wants to bring back the joy of simply looking at photos that remind us of the good times.
Source: CNET

The most talked about TV of 2018 – CNET

Westworld, Atlanta, Lost in Space … here are the shows people can’t stop talking about this year.
Source: CNET

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