Catch up on this week’s round-up of the latest hosting and tech news. Here’s what we’ve uncovered since our last edition.
In a move that could outpace many of the world’s other leading economies, this month sees the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) trial the digital rupee. The aim of the trial, which is available only to a small number of businesses and customers, is to assess how robust the rupee is in real-time when used as legal tender for the purchase of retail goods.
The digital rupees will be available in the same denominations as their ordinary counterparts, and shoppers will carry out transactions using a digital wallet that is stored on their smartphones or other devices. During the trial, shoppers will make digital payments by scanning QR codes in stores and users will also be able to send each other money.
Although deposits of crypto rupees don’t earn interest, they can be converted into standard rupees and deposited in bank accounts.
UK 6G Development
Swedish telecoms giant, Ericsson, is to build a new, UK-based, 6G research centre and will provide tens of millions of pounds of funding towards the project over the next decade. Taking communications technology to new levels, the research will study network security, resilience and energy efficiency, as well as explore how technologies such as AI and neural networks can be deployed.
While the location of the new research centre hasn’t yet been decided, the project will involve twenty academic and industrial researchers, and these will work alongside and support a number of PhD students.
Ericsson anticipates 6G won’t be ready until the next decade but expects that by then its capabilities will significantly supersede 5G, for example, delivering smart agriculture, autonomous intelligent systems and advanced IoT capabilities.
Technology leaders Microsoft and Nvidia are teaming up to develop an advanced AI supercomputer that would enable enterprises to train and deploy AI at scale. The massive project will see Microsoft’s Azure supercomputing infrastructure reinforced with Nvidia’s full AI software stack, networking technology and thousands of GPUs, enabling Azure’s virtual machines to train generative AI.
At the same time, Microsoft’s deep learning optimisation software, DeepSpeed, is to undergo improvements so that AI training can be accelerated to twice its current speed. Currently, this uses Azure VM instances with Nvidia A100 GPUs. The improvements will see the addition of Nvidia’s H100 Transformer Engine which can boost speed with its Quantum-2 400-Gb per second networking capabilities.
Common UK Passwords
NordPass has issued its annual update on password security, and this includes details of the most common and easily cracked passwords used in the UK in 2022. As in previous years, top of the list is the word ‘password’, followed by the number sequence 123456. Also in the top 15 were the football team-related passwords, ‘liverpool’, ‘liverpool1’, ‘chelsea’, and ‘arsenal’.
Gender-wise, some of the top five passwords for females were ‘tigger’, ‘charlie’ and ‘sunshine’, while males opted for ‘12345’, ‘liverpool’ and the surprisingly common ‘mosh2021’. Notice that none of the names here made use of a capital letter, which would have made cracking them much harder.
As hackers make use of advanced software and GPU-enhanced hardware to crack passwords, NordPass has advised that anyone with a password in their top 200 results should change it immediately with one that contains letters, numbers, capitals and special characters.
With road traffic responsible for over 70% of all transport-based CO2 emissions, Scottish company HVS is leading a project to develop a state of the art heavy goods vehicle that is powered by hydrogen fuel cells rather than diesel.
With £30 million in funding from the Advanced Propulsion Centre Programme, a joint venture from the UK Government and the automotive industry, HVS is currently building its environmentally friendly cab and tractor unit at its site in Glasgow. Hydrogen-powered engines are regarded as the future for heavy goods vehicles as the battery-powered engines used in electric cars wouldn’t be practical. When scaling them up for use with HGVs, they’d be too big and take too long to charge.
The company has already built a driving fuel cell technology demonstration HGV and is on schedule to deliver the country’s first hydrogen fuel cell-powered lorry. Aside from helping reduce carbon emissions and other pollutants on the UK’s roads, the project will lead to the creation of new jobs in the growing green energy and transport sector.
Visit the WHUK website for more news, knowledge base articles, blog posts and information on our wide range of services.