Week Ending: 16th April - A Roundup in I.T. & Tech News

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This week marked the first phase of lockdown restrictions easing with hairdressers, retail and pubs reopening! If like us, you couldn’t wait to get down to the pub for a pint with your friends, you may have missed the latest developments in the I.T. and Tech industry.

The cryptocurrency market is now worth more than Apple, Europe wants to limit the use of AI in society, and most of cloud spend is going to waste. These are just a few of the news stories you may have missed.

Let’s get you up to date.

Crypto Market Overtakes World’s Most Valuable Company

Cryptocurrency giants, Bitcoin, Ethereum and Dogecoin have overtaken the market cap of Apple this week with record-breaking price rallies. The cryptocurrency market is now worth more than other big named brands such as Mastercard, PayPal and Visa combined!

Cryptocurrency has continued to rise in the last 12 months, with household names such as Tesla investing and allowing purchase of vehicles with Bitcoin. With a sudden spike in popularity, it is no surprise that one Bitcoin is now worth more than $64,000.

With its continued growth, the cryptocurrency market is now branching out to the stock market. Coinbase will be the first ever company specialising in cryptocurrencies to launch an initial public offering (IPO). The stock market debut for one of the world’s leading cryptocurrency exchanges has been dubbed a coming-of-age moment for the crypto industry, with some estimating values in the region of $100 billion.

Asen Kostadinov, Strategy Manager at London cryptocurrency custody provider, Copper, commented,

“The Coinbase IPO could well serve as a gateway drug to crypto. Coinbase is a credible, regulated, profitable blue-chip tech stock. The IPO will result in new types of investors entering the crypto space. Institutional adoption of crypto has clearly gone through a major inflection point since the last quarter of 2020, which speaks to the maturity and credibility of the space.”

With the mystery behind cryptocurrencies, could this industry be the future we needed or hinder us unknowingly? Whatever the outcome, we know that the cryptocurrency industry will continue to rise and with it already overtaking technology giant Apple the value can only grow.

Discover more here.

Europe seeks to limit use of AI in society

The use of facial recognition for surveillance or algorithms that manipulate human behaviour will be banned under the proposed EU regulations on artificial intelligence according to proposals leaked this week.

The new rules will distinguish between high and low risk AI systems. The high-risk AI such as algorithms used by the police and in recruitment will have strict rules against them. However, the use of AI in the military is exempt, as are systems used by authorities in order to safeguard public security.

Daniel Leufer, European Policy Analyst commented,

“How do we determine what is to somebody’s detriment? And who assesses this? The proposals should be expanded to include all public sector AI systems, regardless of their assigned risk level. This is because people typically do not have a choice about whether or not to interact with and AI system in the public sector.”

The new requirements will also include that all new AI systems have human oversight, alongside all high-risk AI systems having a ‘kill switch’, which could either be a stop button or some other procedure to instantly turn the system off if needed.

This new proposal will force organisations to disclose when they are using deepfakes, using AI to create fake humans, and many companies may need to change their practices. It’s a fine line between ensuring AI is used for its primary purpose of being a tool that increases human wellbeing but also making sure it doesn’t stop EU countries competing with the US and China over technological innovations.

Explore more here.

Majority of cloud spend is going to waste

Cloud adoption has been growing rapidly, but unfortunately billions of dollars are being wasted every year on unused cloud-based solutions.

According to a report by StormForge, complexity and over-provisioning are the biggest causes of cloud waste.

The report states that businesses spend roughly $17 billion each year on unused or idle cloud resources. Not only are the companies wasting money, the impact on the environment due to the volume of greenhouse gases emitted by supporting data centres are a significant contributor to global climate change.

On average, organisations waste 48% of its cloud resources with a further 76% claiming that reducing cloud waste is a major priority. The reason behind this waste is due to the complexity of cloud resources and over-provisioning to ensure application performance.

Brendan Dolan, CFO at CloudCheckr commented,

“The further away from centre you push the decision-making and give the autonomy, the more risk you are of losing control of your spend. You open yourself up to uncontrolled spending.”

Unfortunately, 27% are allocating their resources based on optimisation recommendations from machine-learning tools. This could damage I.T. departments reputation with the rest of the company as cloud waste reduces profitability.

Read more here.

Those were some of this week’s biggest stories in I.T. and tech, but if you want more content, follow us across our four social media channels.