As we get ready to embark on a new week, let's quickly get ourselves acquainted with the Top 10 things that happened in the tech sector last week.

1) This Tiny Chip Could Revolutionize Smartphone And IOT Security

A team of engineers from SK Telecom, a South Korean wireless telecommunications operator company, have created a tiny chip that has the potential of significantly helping in securing communications on a myriad of portable electronics and IOT devices all around the world.

The chip in question is just 5 millimeters square in size, which means it is even smaller than a human fingernail. The chip though small in size is capable of doing big things. It can easily generate mathematically provable random numbers, which form the basis for highly-secure encryption systems. It is important to note here that this is the first time that someone has been able to produce such numbers in such a small package.

2) Indian-Origin Researcher Tweaks Drones For Moving Targets

A team of researchers from University of Cincinnati has been teaching drones also known as unmanned aerial vehicles how to successfully land on moving targets. They are applying a concept called as the fuzzy logic to make this possible. Fuzzy logic can be best described as the kind of reasoning the common man employs subconsciously every day in his life.

The researchers are employing the fuzzy logic to program drones so that they can make better navigational decisions while in the air. The method has the potential of eventually making drones autonomous, which can lead to the technology finally landing in the hands of the common man rather than just big corporates and scientists. The research team includes Manish Kumar, an Indian-origin researcher who is also an associate professor at the University of Cincinnati.

3) Indian Scientists From IIT Develops Technology for Securing Internet of Things

A team of scientists at Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur have successfully built ‘Physically Unclonable Functions’ (PUF) for securing unencrypted networks.

PUFs are basically fingerprint generator circuits for electronic objects which uniquely identify each object, and help in authenticating the commands sent to connected IoT devices. The receiving device have the responsibility of reading the command, verifying the authenticity of the sender and then operate accordingly. The PUF, which consumes very less power and is extremely light in weight, aims to ensure security protocol for device authentication, light-weight key exchange and secure communication.

4) Indian Hospitals Are Fast Adopting 3D Printed Body Parts For Second Lives

A team of doctors from Gurgaon’s Medanta have successfully performed a surgery on the failing spine of a woman and inserted a 3D printed titanium implant giving the 32-year-old teacher a completely new life.

By making use of x-rays and high resolution Cat-scans, a virtual 3D computer model was prepared of the damaged part of the patient’s spine. The next step involved designing a suitable replacement on the computer, which was then sent to a 3D printer in Bareilly, India where the titanium implant was specifically made for the patient layer by layer using lasers.

Not only was the surgery successful, the teacher who is also a dancer and singer by passion was able to walk on her feet miraculously just four days after the heavy surgery. According to doctors, if the surgery would have involved traditional surgical techniques, the patient would have taken several months to walk.

5) This VR Startup Facebook Acquired for $2 Billion is Facing Complete Shutdown

Oculus, a $2 billion acquisition that Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook made almost three years ago, has landed the global giant in a huge mess now. A while ago, popular video game publisher ZeniMax, which is best known in the market as the owner of Fallout and Skyrim developer Bethesda Softworks, filed a lawsuit against Oculus accusing it of using copyrighted ZeniMax technology without permission.

In the lawsuit, ZeniMax had accused that Palmer Luckey, the co-founder of the company, stole trade secrets from ZeniMax to build the company’s signature product, the Oculus Rift. It also accused video game design legend and former employee, John Carmack, of stealing trade secrets. ZeniMax argued in the court that Luckey didn’t even have the skills and brains to design the Rift. The lawsuit was dragged on for quite a bit with shocking revelations and accusations being made by both the companies against each other.

Towards the end, the jury ruled that even though Oculus didn’t steal any trade secrets but its founders had surely violated a non-disclosure agreement and also was guilty of “false designation.” On the whole, Oculus is on the hook for a whopping $300 million, Luckey for $50 million, and co-founder Brendan Iribe is on the hook for $150 million.

6) From Drones to Health, NASA Just Released Number of Softwares You Can Use For Free

All the software aficionados out there, here’s a news that will brighten up your day. NASA has recently released its 2017-2018 software catalog, which contains an extensive portfolio of software products for a wide variety of technical applications. The cherry on the cake is, that all of this is being made available to the public totally free of charge, without any royalty or copyright fees.

While a lot of the released software is about launching a spaceship and stuff, which primarily wouldn’t be useful to regular people, but don’t worry, there’s plenty in store for tinkers and innovators, too.

Available in both hard copy and online, this is the third edition of the software catalog and has contributions from all the agency’s centers on data processing/storage, operations, propulsion, business systems and aeronautics. The catalog also includes many of the tools that NASA is currently using to explore space.

7) Hacker Reveals A Loophole To Get Free Uber Rides For Life

A professional hacker named Anand Prakash has recently discovered that the popular car-hailing service Uber had a bug in its app which can allow one to avail free Uber rides for the rest of their lives anywhere in the world where the giant is operational.

According to Prakash, he discovered the big Uber blunder when he sat on a mission to test the Uber application for security loopholes. All he did was order an Uber and then avoid paying for the ride by exploiting a bug when specifying his method of payment in the app.

Specifying the payment mode is where Prakash caught its big fish Uber. He realised that when one enters an invalid payment method for example: abc, xyz etc, they could ride an Uber for free anytime of the day, anywhere in the world.

The security loophole has now been solved and Prakash has been rewarded by Uber for his work through the giant’s bug bounty hunters programme.

8) The Volta Is An E-bike With All The Trimmings

California-based bike company Pure Cycles has recently started funding its first electric bike, the Volta, on Kickstarter, the famous crowdfunding platform.

The Volta offers a rear wheel-based motor, which according to the company can get up to 40 miles on a single charge in “Eco” mode and can reach a top speed of 20 mph. It also has integrated lights, which turn on automatically when the sun is down, also intelligently signal braking. A small integrated display on the bike shows both the current speed and charge level.

9) Bitcoin Value Tops Gold For First Time

For the very first, a unit of the digital cryptocurrency Bitcoin exceeded the value of an ounce of gold. The digital currency closed at $1,268 on Thursday (2nd March, 2017) while a troy ounce of gold stood at $1,233.

According to experts, this increase in bitcoin's value can be attributed to surging demand in China, where authorities have recently warned that the cryptocurrency is being used by people to channel money out of the country.

The past months' performance can be considered as a major reversal for Bitcoin, which plummeted in value in the year 2014 after the unfortunate collapse of the largest exchange.

10) How A Typo Took Down S3, The Backbone Of The Internet

Early last week, much of the world wide web was brought to a sudden halt when the servers powering them suddenly vanished. The vanished servers were a part of S3, which is Amazon’s popular web hosting service. Not only did they went down themselves, they took several big services like Trello and Quora with them. The servers finally came back online more than four hours later.

According to Amazon, the cause of the problem was a typo. Explaining the whole episode, Amazon said that some members of the S3 team were debugging the billing system and as a part of that, they had to take a small number of servers offline. But unfortunately, one of the inputs to the command was entered incorrectly and a larger set of servers was removed than intended.

The company also apologised for the incident and said, "We want to apologize for the impact this event caused for our customers. We will do everything we can to learn from this event and use it to improve our availability even further.”

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