Everything you wanted to know about bitcoin but were afraid to ask

The value of cryptocurrencies is rising fast. But is it sustainable? And how does it work, anyway? These questions, and many more, answered…

The money has become too much to ignore and so bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are back in the news. You may have heard about Ethereum, a cryptocurrency that has risen in value by more than 2,500% over the course of 2017. Or maybe you’ve heard about one of the many smaller cryptocurrencies that raised hundreds of millions of dollars in the first few days they were on sale, during their “initial coin offering”. Or you’ve just spotted that bitcoin, which made headlines in 2013 for hitting a high of $200, is now worth nearly $7,000 (£5,250), making a lot of people very rich in the process.

Are these cryptocurrencies simply speculative bubbles or will they actually transform our financial system? It’s time to answer a few common questions about this new technology – and assess whether a lot of people have just pulled off the investment of their lifetime or made a huge mistake.

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Amazon makes Cambridge heart of Alexa and drone innovation with new offices

‘Development Centre’ is filled with 400 employees dedicated to researching Amazon’s AI-assistant and Prime Air deliveries.

Amazon has reiterated its commitment to the UK by opening a new so-called Development Centre in the heart of Cambridge – three storeys of premium office space housing 400 employees dedicated to research for products from Amazon’s AI-assistant Alexa to the brave new field of Prime Air drone deliveries.

The new development joins Amazon’s original Castle Park building in Cambridge to house an interdisciplinary team of engineers, scientists and researchers – dubbed Amazon Research Cambridge – dedicated to “pure innovation”, according to Amazon’s UK boss, Doug Gurr.

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How Facebook and Google threaten public health – and democracy | Roger McNamee

The sad truth is that Facebook and Google have behaved irresponsibly in the pursuit of massive profits. And this has come at a cost to our health

In an interview this week with Axios, Facebook’s original president, Sean Parker, admitted that the company intentionally sought to addict users and expressed regret at the damage being inflicted on children.

This admission, by one of the architects of Facebook, comes on the heels of last week’s hearings by Congressional committees about Russian interference in the 2016 election, where the general counsels of Facebook, Alphabet (parent of Google and YouTube), and Twitter attempted to deflect responsibility for manipulation of their platforms.

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