6/5/18 Show feat. Dr. Arvind Narayanan on Web Privacy and Society Without It

Featured image: When you browse a single website, an array of hundreds of entities may be probing the page, collecting bits of information about you. (Courtesy Ars Technica and Gary Waters)

This week on These Vibes, we have a double header: the show starts off with Dr. Jim Bell, President of the Planetary Society, on his new book The Ultimate Interplanetary Travel Guide. A future of space tourism—hiking the mountains of Mars, skiing the ice of Europa, dining aboard cloud hotels on Venus–may be closer than you think!

Afterward, we are joined by Dr. Arvind Narayanan, professor in Princeton University’s Department of Computer Science and expert on web privacy. There are many reasons a web surfer may want to be discreet about their identity: tracking your online actions may enable personal enemies, corporations, or the government to act against you, or persuade you to take some action. In fact, advances in web tracking enable the array of entities behind each website to gather information about internet-goers and use it against them, by means of targeted advertising, addicting apps, or worse. Hear how canvas fingerprinting can connect your online and offline lives, how all this lack of privacy may shape the society of the future, and why there’s hope that we may be able to fend off the worst if we recognize this as a problem.

If you would like to take charge of your web privacy, take a look at the following extensions that help block trackers within pages:

The playlist is available on WPRB.com or below.

Screenshot from 2018-06-05 20-06-51

Advertisements

5/29/18 Show feat. Dr. Luca Mastropasqua on Fuel Cell Carbon Capture and Hydrogen Storage

Featured image: A fuel cell built at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. This one burns methanol, but others produce energy with hydrogen or natural gas, sorting various byproducts (even such as carbon!) in the meantime. (Courtesy Creative Commons)

This week, it’s our privilege to host Dr. Luca Mastropasqua, a postdoctoral researcher at Princeton’s Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment and the GECOS group at Politecnico Di Milano. His research focuses on carbon capture, which can sift carbon out of the emissions of industrial plants before it pollutes the atmosphere. Luca’s research does this not via the mainstream filtering process (which uses energy) but via fuel cells (which provide energy). Hear how this technique may reduce the emissions of fossil fuels by about 90%, and how it dovetails nicely into using molecular hydrogen for energy storage!

In other news:

The playlist is available on WPRB.com or below.

Screenshot from 2018-05-29 20-19-01