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Tim Fernholz

Tim Fernholz covers state, business and society for Quartz.
Results 51-60 of 89

China May Soon Peddle Discount Drones to the Developing World

June 18, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Want to buy a military-grade drone? That won’t be easy, unless you’ve got a good relationship with Beijing. This week’s Paris air show highlighted the trouble with the burgeoning drone economy: While the technology is better than ever, there still aren’t many people who can legally buy unmanned vehicles. Civilian ...

Bitcoin Lovers: This Is What It Looks Like When the US Wants to Destroy a Currency

June 14, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow There’s a big difference between bringing down a currency and simply trying to regulate it. Today a top US financial crime official said digital currencies like bitcoin shouldn’t fear government plans to regulate them like regular old financial institutions. “Administrators or exchangers of virtual currencies have registration requirements and a ...

Drone Builders Prepare to Create Immigration Reform’s Lucrative Border Panopticon

June 12, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The immigration bill that aims to solve America’s unauthorized immigration problem and clogged visa system is almost through the Senate. The only thing left to do is hand out jobs and cash to the contractors who will secure the US-Mexican border with round-the-clock high-tech surveillance. Tuesday the bill overcame its ...

Half the United States’ Most Skilled Workers Don’t Have a Bachelor’s Degree

June 11, 2013 Think you need a college degree to be a skilled worker? Think again. With so much focus on staying competitive in global markets, jobs in the US bearing the STEM—science, technology, engineering and mathematics—moniker are in high demand. A new attempt to evaluate how 26 million US STEM workers use ...

Obama Bets Computers, Sat Phones and Crypto Software Will Make Iran’s Elections More Democratic

May 31, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Some view the funneling of weapons to Syrian rebels as a check on Iran’s bad behavior. The Obama administration is skipping a proxy war of munitions and missiles in favor of a more devastating strike: sending iPads and anti-virus software directly to Tehran. The US government did an abrupt about-face ...

Meet the Only Company That Still Thinks a Manned Spacecraft Should Fly Back to Earth

May 24, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow In a hangar next to an enormous dry lake in the Mojave desert, a new spacecraft that could launch the next generation of space travel is about to begin the testing. What it sets it apart is it’s the only manned spacecraft currently being built that can actually fly back ...

How a Startup Will Stream Video from Space Without Paying for a Satellite

May 7, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow How do you get satellite imagery without a satellite? Rather than investing hundreds of millions of dollars into a satellite system, the space startup Urthecast struck a deal with OAO RSC Energia, Russia’s top aerospace contractor, to install two cameras on the International Space Station (ISS) in October 2013—including the ...

Apple and Others Could Stop Smartphone Theft. Here’s Why They Don’t

May 3, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Now that we all love carrying tiny computers worth hundreds of dollars in our hands and waving them around at every opportunity, smartphone theft has become common. According to the US Federal Communications Commission, 30% to 40% of robberies in major US cities involve smartphones. In Europe and Australia, stolen ...

SpaceX Takes a Hit as NASA Chooses Russia’s Space Agency Instead

May 1, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Blaming budget cuts, the US space agency NASA signed a $424 million contract with Roscosmos, the Russian space agency, to ferry six American, European, Japanese or Canadian astronauts to the International Space Station through 2016. Apparently space flight isn’t immune to outsourcing when countries or companies are looking to cut ...

Could Taking Down Zombie Satellites Be as Lucrative as Launching Them?

April 26, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The European Space Agency’s conference on space junk, which just wrapped up in Germany, brought news both bad and good for the space industry. The bad news: The $100 billion worth of satellites orbiting earth are in more danger than ever from space junk. The good news: There could be ...