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Gwynn Guilford

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Uncle Sam Is Helping Illegal Pot Producers Destroy California's Water Supply

February 13, 2014 Heavy rains in California in recent days have partly alleviated the drought that parched the state in January. The dry spell is merely exacerbating a long-developing problem in northern California, however: The huge volumes of water used to grow marijuana, as well as the noxious fertilizers and pesticides gushing into ...

Is Microsoft’s Bing Spreading the Chinese Government’s Censorship Around the World?

February 12, 2014 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Search for ”达赖喇嘛” (Dalai Lama) in China, and you should expect the results were cleansed by the government. More alarming: China’s censorship seems to extend well beyond its borders for users of Microsoft’s Bing search engine. “It would appear that no matter where you use Bing in the world, unfavorable ...

Australia and China Are Beating Amazon in the Commercial Drone Race

December 2, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow That Amazon is readying a fleet of drones to drop off packages to customers seems like yet another example of the company’s cutting edge. The project could go live as early as 2015, after the US approves laws for commercial use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), but a slew of ...

Shutdown Could Hamper Inspections of Seafood Imports

October 7, 2013 This article has been corrected by Quartz. The text of the correction is below. It’s almost a week into the government shutdown and imported food Americans are eating is passing through with little of the inspection it’s normally given. Thanks to the shutdown, some food safety inspectors at the Food ...

Would You Report Chinese Corruption to an Anonymous Government Website?

September 13, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow In an effort to rein in online extortion and restore control over whistleblowers, China’s government is cracking down on online “rumor-mongering” of the sort that disrupts the “social order.” On Thursday, to forward the latter goal, Cui Shaopeng, a senior Communist party discipline official, announced the launch of a new ...

China Could Become the First Country to Legalize Parcel Delivery by Drone

September 4, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow In building drones that kill people, the US has a couple-decade head start on China. But when it comes to domestic uses, US businesses are hamstrung because the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) isn’t required to issue commercial drone rules until 2015. In the meantime, one of China’s biggest delivery companies ...

China's Military Hackers Are Trying to Break into America's Infrastructure

August 6, 2013 The question of whether the Chinese military is on a hacking offensive has largely been answered—and, despite Chinese government protestations, it sure looks like a pretty big “yes.” However, beyond the widely reported infiltration of foreign companies, the question of what else it’s hacking remains hazy. But new research confirms ...

The Chinese Army Is Trying to Hack a Missouri Water Plant

August 6, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The question of whether the Chinese military is on a hacking offensive has largely been answered -- and, despite Chinese government protestations, it sure looks like a pretty big “yes.” However, beyond the widely reported infiltration of foreign companies, the question of what else it’s hacking remains hazy. But new ...

Inside China’s Crazy Plan to Build the Longest, Most Expensive, Most Dangerous Underwater Tunnel on the Planet

July 12, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Deep beneath the Bohai Sea, Chinese engineers may soon begin boring the longest submarine tunnel on the planet. At an estimated 76 miles (123km) long, it would surpass the combined length of world’s two longest underwater tunnels—Japan’s Seikan Tunnel and the Channel Tunnel between the UK and France. To connect ...

From Boston to Sichuan, Messaging Apps Come to the Rescue When Cellphone Networks Fail

April 23, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Both in last week’s Boston bombings and last weekend’s earthquake in China’s Sichuan province, mobile-phone networks were quickly overwhelmed as people rushed to call family and friends. In both cases, users took to services that use bandwidth more efficiently, like text messaging, microblogging and instant-messaging apps. Voice calls consume about ...