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UN Report: “Globally, e-Waste Accounts For 46 Million Tonnes”

A UN report has recently been published on the topic of electronic waste. Globally, e-waste accounts for 46 million tonnes. What changes do we have witnessed on their quantity, and do we treat them properly?
E-waste is not waste like the other varieties of waste humans produce. Their environmental impact is particularly strong and the volume increases twice as fast. In 2014, electrical and electronic waste thus represented a new historical record, they amounted, according to the report by the United Nation University, 41.8 million tonnes against 39.8 million tonnes in 2013.

60% of the waste found fit in the category of kitchen or bathroom equipment (washing machines, microwave ovens, refrigerators). Other, smaller sizes, such as mobile phones, laptops, or printers, represent 7% of the waste produced.

Many factors explain this rapid and worrisome increase in the amount of e-waste. The real problem is that the useful lives of these objects is too short: their time of use ever smaller. We actually witnessed a widespread and accelerated obsolescence, so the producers (which offer products for not last) and users which, taken in a mad race for consumption, feel the need to change very quickly. Faced with the expected technological innovations (it is estimated, for example, that the number of connected objects across the world could reach 89 billion in 2020), the volume of electronic waste should continue to grow to reach some 50 million tonnes in 2018. Except to change our behavior, the issue is that of recycling.

Most of the waste cited by the report (phones, computers, printers, washing machine) are completely recyclable. How is it that we come to such a waste?
Recycling is simply inadequate and inefficient. According to the report, only one-sixth of these e-waste is recycled. Yet these wastes are resources. They indeed contain many reusable materials such as gold, silver or aluminum. The UN estimates that all these devices scrapped in 2014, contained for 48.4 billion euros of reusable materials. The recycling chain is itself very complex and depends on many of the laws in force in a given territory. In fact, a large majority of this waste disappear official recycling circuits. They illegally fail in developing countries who are trying to recycle, with no real expertise address the health and environmental risks involved. It is, therefore, urgent to develop real waste recovery strategies.

If the UN is sounding the alarm on the image that it is because these wastes are pollutants. At what point? Do they represent a “danger” for the environment?

These wastes are inherently toxic because they contain hazardous components such as mercury, cadmium or chromium. The 41.8 million tons of waste recorded in 2014, also contained 2.2 million tonnes of harmful components for the environment. It is mainly the chemicals inside the battery problematic. They are difficult to reach but piled up in a landfill, rainwater leaks into them and, gradually, into the surrounding environment. So they pollute the soil directly, but gradually also diffuse these poisons into the streams and waterways. Waste must be carefully managed, including its recycling phase, as they can be as harmful to health.

How is it that waste of this type is so prolific while a number of laws govern this type of waste? What solutions can you foresee to stop this problem?

One solution is by being more mindful about the planned obsolescence of these devices. This process may be good for companies’ profit margins, but it is extremely harmful to the environment and the people who inhabit it. We must consider the product in a comprehensive approach in all stages of his life, recycling the product must be designed from conception to the waste of resources then become like the others.

future

Ferrari Reveals Car Of The Future

The Italian automaker Ferrari reveals the first images of his spaceship prototype. Like its racing cars, the brand’s UFO prancing horse has a futuristic design, avant-garde and refined.

Ferrari accustomed us for decades to come out of its factories real dream run machinery that tear the asphalt. Under the leadership of Flavio Manzoni, head of design department at Ferrari and a great lover of science fiction, the firm has focused this time on the flying vehicles leaving free rein to the imagination of its engineers. “I lived in a six-storey building, with a large roof terrace. I thought that one day it would land a UFO. I was both curious and disturbed by this, “explains Flavio.

The result? A hybrid vessel fluid forms that borrows some features of Ferrari cars including aerodynamics and the front of the ship that mimics the shape of the front spoiler of LaFerrari while the rear is inspired rear wing of the Ferrari FXX K. “It is different from that of my childhood dreams in which I imagined a car of the future that would slide on a cushion of air,” continues the designer.

This remarkably accomplished exercise in style unfortunately never happen. Leave room for dreams and escape and embark aboard this beautiful spaceship through 3D rendering the Italian firm offers us:

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Google and Microsoft: The Latest News On These Tech Giants

Google

Google has filed a patent recently that has not gone unnoticed in the tech world. Indeed, the American giant wants to remove the space bar keyboards in the future. However, the “space” function will not disappear.

At a time when the latest laptops latest continually strive for minimalism in their designs, Google now considers the traditional space bar to be too large. The information was revealed by the US site Quartz on April 28, the day the US Patent Office and Trademark Office issued the patent filed by the US firm. This is the patent No. 9019207 and it is possible to consult online.

This patent is accompanied by a diagram showing a laptop with which it is possible to understand how Google wants to remove the bar while trying to keep the essential function “space”.

Google’s intentions here are clear. So this is indeed a move to remove the space bar, but also to enlarge the central trackpad. The latter then will intrude upon the keyboard, instead of the current space bar. The dotted line shown in the diagram would separate trackpad then what we could now call “touch space bar”. The computer that will enjoy this novelty will be able, through sensors, understand written or if the user navigates only on the internet. In the second case, a light pressure on the touch space bar would be perceived as a mouse click, not a space.

Google believes in equipping the next round of Chromebook, but this novelty could be seen elsewhere, although we have no precise about it. This is the third attempt to deposit such a patent by Google during the past four years, the last two have not been found eligible by the US Office of Patents and Trademarks.

Microsoft

The first day of the keynote Microsoft was rich in information. The company has delivered new details about the successor of Internet Explorer, the capacity of its reality glasses HoLoLens being increased to interact with a robot, and operation of Microsoft Windows 10. The operating system will undergo a major change. Windows 10 will be the same on computers, phones and tablets, and will open to applications from Android and iOS, the operating systems of Google and Apple smartphones. Also changes and updates will be felt on their corresponding cloud computing technologies. Microsoft will enable developers to use computer code with which they create Android applications (Java and C ++) and iOS (Objective-C) to build their versions on Windows 10, instead of having to start over.

This simplification could allow Windows Phone to fill the lack of choice in applications: only 300,000 apps are available for iOS 1.2 million against 1.3 million for Android.
The development of an application has a cost. For a company that started or those who launch a new app with a limited budget, we must make a choice. Developers often begin by creating a version for iOS. If it meets the expected success, carried on Android a few months later. The opposite phenomenon also exists in countries where Android dominates, as in China. But because of the lack of success of Windows Phone (2.8% of smartphone sales in 2014), developers often ignore the Microsoft system.
Finding your computer apps

By allowing applications to use the already created code for Android and iOS, Microsoft reduces the time and money needed to develop an app on their system. Another argument for Windows 10: the unity between smartphones and computers. Mobile applications become available on PC, an area that Microsoft still dominates, with almost 90% of the world Windows computers.

Microsoft had no choice. Google is working on ARC, a small program that can launch applications for Android from its Google Chrome browser, and from any operating system. Mobile applications have thus landed on Windows anyway.
This change is also an extension of the Windows opening strategy, initiated by Satya Nadella, the new CEO of Microsoft. Previously, the company reserved the mobile versions of its software for Windows users, as does Apple. Given the lack of success of Windows Phone, Microsoft has decided to offer Office 360, the application that includes its flagship Office software such as Word or Excel, on Android and iOS. If Microsoft is adapting its own apps on systems from competitors, why not accommodate theirs?

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My friends over at Prosyn IT have written a great piece about London’s great architecture that I think is worth a quick read.