08/06/2013 Click


08/06/2013

Featuring a look at the world's first digital currency and a conversation with the creator of the world wide web, Sir Tim Berners-Lee. Includes tech news and web roundup.


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Transcript


LineFromTo

that very special day at Broadcasting House. That's it from

:00:02.:00:08.

me, Adnan Nawaz will be here at the top of the hour. But now on BBC

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News it's time for Click. Which would you rather trust with your

:00:11.:00:16.

life savings? A handful of cash? A handful of banks? Or a handful of

:00:16.:00:26.
:00:26.:00:38.

This week, Click grabs a fistful of Dollars and turns them into

:00:38.:00:42.

Bitcoins. This strange new currency is controlled by no-one and

:00:42.:00:46.

everyone. We will find out if it's an idea that's worth buying into.

:00:46.:00:51.

He's changed the world once, can he help do it again? We'll sit down

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with the inventor of the Web to talk about the good causes

:00:55.:00:59.

technology is being aimed at now. That plus the latest Tech News, and

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a date for your diary in Webscape as we film your schedule with apps

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to keep you on time -- Phil. Welcome to Click, I'm Spencer Kelly.

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Welcome to the financial heart of London. That's the Bank of England,

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the place in charge of this stuff, the UK's finances. Although it's

:01:20.:01:24.

the job of everyone around here to keep things ticking over nicely, of

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course recently they have had a tougher time than normal. The

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global economic crisis is hitting some nations really hard. Back in

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March as Cyprus's economy teetered on the brink its banks closed down

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for two weeks to prevent anxious savers from pulling out all their

:01:44.:01:50.

cash. But in the last few months, as economies have fallen, a new

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currency has begun to rise to fame. Bitcoin. It is the world's first

:01:56.:02:01.

digital currency. And what's really unusual about it is that it's not

:02:01.:02:06.

owned or regulated by any bank or any institution. You buy a Bitcoins

:02:06.:02:12.

with real money at online exchanges. Each Bitcoin is a long you need

:02:12.:02:17.

string of digits, which is stored on your computer or your own in a

:02:17.:02:21.

file called a digital wallet. But don't confuse them with things like

:02:21.:02:26.

Microsoft Points of Facebook credits, these are simply online

:02:26.:02:29.

vouchers tied to real world currencies with fixed exchange

:02:29.:02:34.

rates. Bitcoin has its own value. Its own exchange rate, which

:02:34.:02:38.

fluctuates against other currencies. And also, even though it only

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exists online, it actually behaves a lot more like the physical cash

:02:42.:02:47.

that people trust. A transaction is as simple as me handing you these

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notes. It's a guaranteed payment. No middleman. As soon as you hand

:02:52.:02:57.

over the money, the deal is done. There's a lot of advantages to

:02:57.:03:02.

taking Bitcoin over the payments, for example PayPal or credit card,

:03:02.:03:07.

or any other form of mechanism short of a bank transfer. Any other

:03:07.:03:10.

payment method can be reversed, if someone comes to your site and uses

:03:10.:03:14.

a stolen credit card, three months down the line after you have

:03:14.:03:17.

shipped the goods, potentially that could be charged back, you have

:03:17.:03:21.

lost your goods, and you have reimbursed the card company. With

:03:21.:03:25.

Bitcoin, all transactions are final. For those whose currencies have

:03:25.:03:30.

been scripted, like Cyprus, or whose currencies are devaluing,

:03:30.:03:35.

like Argentinas, Bitcoins have become a valuable investment. But

:03:35.:03:39.

it isn't risk-free. No-one is controlling the exchange rate, that

:03:39.:03:44.

means it fluctuates wildly. When Cypriots started turning their

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euros into Bitcoins the value shot up. After a cyber attack designed

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to manipulate the currency, the value crashed. The story of Bitcoin

:03:55.:04:03.

is a rather mysterious one. In 2009, someone calling themselves Satoshi

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Nakamoto published a paper online saying they had worked out how to

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create a digital currency that was completely decentralised. There

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would be no meant to create the coins. No authority to regulate

:04:16.:04:20.

them. No thanks to store them or check if anyone was forging or

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copying them. All of this would be done by the computer code which he

:04:25.:04:31.

released on to the internet. But weirdly no-one knows who Satoshi

:04:31.:04:36.

Nakamoto really is. All we know is that so far the theory and the

:04:36.:04:41.

computer code seemed to be working. The way the cryptography has been

:04:41.:04:46.

implemented is very sound. The vision behind it is remarkable. The

:04:46.:04:53.

genius. The mathematics behind it is mind boggling. Security expert

:04:53.:04:58.

Jacques Erasmus is one of those who downloaded the code and became a

:04:58.:05:03.

Bitcoin miner. It is their machines which police the Bitcoin currency

:05:03.:05:08.

by verifying the transactions of others. Their job is to spot and

:05:08.:05:12.

invalidate forged Bitcoin serial numbers and attempts to spend the

:05:12.:05:17.

same Bitcoin twice. For this service the miners get a

:05:17.:05:21.

transaction fee, a small percentage in Bitcoins. But the mining

:05:22.:05:28.

software does a second job. It creates Bitcoins. Creating a new

:05:28.:05:32.

Bitcoin, with a valid ID number, involves trying trillions of

:05:33.:05:36.

combinations of digits in the hope of finding one that fits a certain

:05:36.:05:43.

pattern. It's mathematically very difficult, and intentionally so.

:05:43.:05:47.

Macca moto Pro Plus programme is designed to you so much processing

:05:47.:05:52.

power that all the mining hardware in the world will only create a few

:05:52.:05:57.

Bitcoins between them every hour. This machine has been mining for

:05:57.:06:05.

about four days non-stop flat out. As you can see over here, it's mind

:06:05.:06:15.

0.04 of a Bitcoin. It will take you maybe a month, 40 to 50 days, to

:06:15.:06:20.

mine one Bitcoin. That's not a very good rate of return. There are fast

:06:20.:06:25.

food restaurants that pay less than that. Definitely.In fact, if you

:06:25.:06:29.

really want to mine at a decent rate you need to buy tens of

:06:29.:06:32.

thousands of dollars worth of dedicated hardware. But the fact

:06:32.:06:37.

that Bitcoin behaves a lot like cash does present some problems.

:06:37.:06:43.

For one, the only place you'll Bitcoins are stored is in your

:06:43.:06:48.

digital wallet. How easy is it to steal a wallet from someone else's

:06:48.:06:54.

computer? At the moment it is very easy. That is one of the main

:06:54.:07:00.

weaknesses in the structure at the moment. There's a lot of now wear

:07:00.:07:06.

out their that contains key logging capabilities that are actually

:07:06.:07:12.

purposefully looking for wallets, Bitcoin wallets, and logging their

:07:13.:07:16.

associated passwords that unlock the wallet. So if you have those

:07:16.:07:20.

two pieces, the password and the physical wallet, you can load that

:07:20.:07:26.

won it up in your own software and empty out. The thing it physical

:07:26.:07:31.

cash also has another advantage. It's anonymous. There's no record

:07:31.:07:37.

of who owns what, or who paid to if you don't want there to be. And

:07:37.:07:44.

Bitcoin ticks those boxes as well. And that means is the currency of

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choice on the black market. This is one of several websites offering

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drugs and other legal services. You can only access it by using special

:07:54.:07:58.

and on the Mize Inc software, and you can only pay using the equally

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anonymous B?I ? anonymous Bnd it' association with crime that could

:08:03.:08:09.

be Bitcoin's downfall. One of the reasons people trust state

:08:09.:08:12.

currencies, for example dollars, is that they have some fundamental

:08:12.:08:16.

value. You know at some point in your life you're going to receive a

:08:16.:08:20.

tax bill, and you know the government accepts dollars in tax.

:08:20.:08:23.

That means everyone trusts there going to be able to use the dollar

:08:23.:08:30.

to do something useful. Bitcoin, the problem it faces, lots of its

:08:30.:08:34.

uses are somewhat shady. There is a risk that suddenly trust in the

:08:34.:08:39.

system collapses and the value could quickly go to zero.

:08:39.:08:44.

enough enough for Bitcoin to become a real

:08:44.:08:49.

established currency. Ironically it needs asked to have confidence in

:08:49.:08:57.

it. Confidence which at the moment is hard to earn -- needs us. If you

:08:58.:09:01.

use Bitcoin as we would love to hear from you. If you accept them,

:09:01.:09:06.

treat them, if you've had some stolen, get in touch and share your

:09:06.:09:13.

experiences. -- trade them. Next up, a look at this week's Tech News.

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Can an ultra book function in the harsh and freezing wastes of

:09:17.:09:21.

Antarctica? Polar explorers Ben Saunders and Tarka L'Herpiniere

:09:21.:09:25.

will find out when they retrace Captain Scott's ill-fated trek

:09:26.:09:29.

across the southern polar region. They will be equipped with a couple

:09:29.:09:34.

of ultra box powered by Intel's new processes, chips which its makers

:09:34.:09:39.

claim had been designed to offer greatly improved battery life.

:09:39.:09:42.

Freezing temperatures are notoriously battery sapping. To

:09:42.:09:48.

engineers have been freezing it to minus 40 degrees and flooring it

:09:48.:09:53.

out for 70 days. We will find out if the flat tops up to the task in

:09:53.:09:58.

October. Online retail juggernaut Amazon has I opened an online

:09:58.:10:03.

marketplace in India. Indian retail regulators have prevented Amazon

:10:03.:10:07.

from selling its own products, but third parties will be able to sell

:10:07.:10:13.

goods such as physical books, TV shows and movies. India's the

:10:13.:10:18.

retail market is seen as worth $800 million, and that's with just 8% or

:10:18.:10:22.

so of the country online. It does face competition from home-grown

:10:22.:10:26.

company Flipcart, which has been open for several years and is one

:10:26.:10:30.

of India's top 20 websites. Researchers at the University of

:10:31.:10:34.

Washington are working on an algorithm that detects tiny shifts

:10:34.:10:40.

in wifi signals when a user move through it. We seek uses the

:10:40.:10:44.

changes in signals to recognise specific movements, and can control

:10:44.:10:48.

everything from a sound system to a coffee maker even through walls.

:10:48.:10:52.

The system is being designed to work with current Wireless Rigters,

:10:52.:10:55.

but you might want to turn it off before practising those killer

:10:55.:11:01.

dance moves. How about controlling devices without moving at all? 18

:11:01.:11:04.

at Minnesota University have developed a radio-controlled

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chopper which can be controlled by its pilots thoughts. Wearing an

:11:09.:11:12.

electric covered cap, the university team have created

:11:12.:11:17.

software that allows the software to imagine different movements,

:11:17.:11:21.

thinking about clenching its hand for instance can steered the bird

:11:21.:11:24.

right or left. The team hopes this sort of technology will be adopted

:11:24.:11:34.
:11:34.:11:38.

by people with movement How do you change the world? One

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answer is to start a company like Google. Another is to use your

:11:43.:11:48.

corporate muscle to get others to do the same. That is what Google

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has done. Earlier this year, it launched the global impact

:11:53.:12:02.

challenge. This week, the results came in.

:12:02.:12:06.

Google's mission statement. But that mantra does not always

:12:06.:12:10.

convinced. Just ask British parliamentarians who last month

:12:10.:12:14.

accused the technology giant of shirking its fiscal

:12:14.:12:18.

responsibilities to the UK economy or privacy advocates who say that

:12:18.:12:26.

into our personal lives. However, Google has always placed a high

:12:26.:12:31.

responsibilities. responsibilities. To that end, it

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launched the global impact challenge, asking British non-

:12:34.:12:38.

profit organisations how they would use technology to change the world.

:12:38.:12:47.

Last month in a teaching session not unlike the X Factor, the

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applicants were whittled down to some winners. The applicants span

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the spectrum from a project offering African communities of

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greed and safe access to solar power. And a mobile tight form was

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a short -- citizens in war-torn projects. Among the judges was Tim

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Berners-Lee. He would be a reasonably good person to ask about

:13:16.:13:21.

how other aspirational world -- world changes could do the same.

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Are NGOs using technology as effectively as they could?

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reason why this challenge is good is that they are not, typically.

:13:30.:13:34.

Across the board, there are two problems. The first is that there

:13:34.:13:40.

are many NGOs, many of them have been around for quite a while. We

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addressed this. This is the edge of technology. Show us how you are

:13:46.:13:50.

aware of that. Because it is not clear. Another way, which is

:13:50.:13:55.

perhaps more important, is not just about modernising what you have

:13:55.:14:01.

already been dealing but looking for a new agenda of things that we

:14:01.:14:07.

can do. Looking at things that will bring in money to become the

:14:07.:14:12.

business itself. From the point of view of funders, they are not

:14:12.:14:15.

necessarily looking for money... If the message is that you can put

:14:15.:14:18.

money in for a few years and then create something that will run

:14:18.:14:24.

itself out there and sustain itself, that is often an interesting area.

:14:24.:14:28.

As the inventor of the weather, you have a certain vision as to how it

:14:28.:14:33.

may develop -- inventor of the internet. Has it gone differently

:14:33.:14:38.

to what you imagined? Originally, it was supposed to be very

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collaborative. The very first browser, that was not just a

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browser but an editor. If you found something as you were looking at

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the internet that you could improve upon, you could edit it. And you

:14:56.:15:02.

could save that and think back. The idea was that it would be a

:15:02.:15:06.

collaborative space so that if we were working on a project, the

:15:06.:15:09.

project would be in hyperspace. We would build it together and by

:15:10.:15:16.

showing that project, all of our ideas would be in the space. That

:15:16.:15:21.

and do not happen. In some way, it has still not become that very

:15:21.:15:28.

intuitive or collaborative medium. Is it as open as you would like in

:15:28.:15:33.

terms of the idea of information being freely available across

:15:33.:15:38.

browsers? When you look at the rich media whether to. A world that we

:15:38.:15:48.
:15:48.:15:52.

inhabit, watching videos and all sorts of Material... -- Web 2.0

:15:52.:16:02.
:16:02.:16:02.

world we inhabit. With HTML5, we are in a better position. There is

:16:02.:16:05.

certainly constructive tension between every browser manufacturer,

:16:05.:16:13.

trying to make something better and smarter. The major browser

:16:13.:16:19.

manufacturers, the five you have heard of in the West and the five

:16:19.:16:25.

in China are collaborating very fiercely. And we have got that

:16:25.:16:30.

tension between the competition which makes people want to advance

:16:30.:16:36.

and push their own browser head of the other. But you have to have

:16:36.:16:44.

open standards for the internet to work as well. It is like the forces,

:16:44.:16:52.

the pressure on the keel of a boat. When it is white, the vessel goes

:16:52.:16:57.

zooming forward. When it is not right, it goes nowhere. You are not

:16:57.:17:02.

worried about countries like Iran that say that they will... Or other

:17:02.:17:07.

systems that may not be entirely compatible with the internet?

:17:07.:17:11.

not so much the internet but the browsers. The browsers lie on

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underlying internet connectivity. What many people did not realise

:17:15.:17:20.

until the Mubarak regime turned off the internet in Egypt, that was the

:17:20.:17:30.
:17:30.:17:31.

first time they realised that it the internet should spend some time

:17:31.:17:36.

worrying about that. Worrying about who could turn off the internet and

:17:36.:17:40.

who is spying on you. In countries where it has not been turned off,

:17:40.:17:46.

someone could be signed when you. A strong government allows people to

:17:46.:17:50.

communicate and sees the state of the world and allows people to have

:17:50.:18:00.
:18:00.:18:01.

dissenting voices. And we have seen when things take a step backwards,

:18:01.:18:09.

long period of time, I think that openness and democracy are pushing

:18:09.:18:15.

us towards greater openness and so on. I am hopeful. The genie is out

:18:15.:18:23.

of the bottle. Now, I would like to introduce you

:18:23.:18:27.

to my personal assistant. Of course, it is this thing. These days, we

:18:27.:18:31.

trust smartphones to run more and more of our lives. When it comes to

:18:31.:18:37.

keeping a diary, what should you do? Stick with the pre- installed

:18:37.:18:47.
:18:47.:18:47.

calendar application or go for something third party.

:18:47.:18:51.

I am Ace slave to my diary and have to consult my smartphone before

:18:51.:18:58.

Ribery in to do anything. So, I thought I would give some of the

:18:58.:19:02.

best Callander applications in the world a shot to see if they could

:19:02.:19:08.

simplify my schedule. This is simple to set up and imports data

:19:08.:19:11.

from most popular calendars. It uses colour coding to help organise

:19:11.:19:16.

your life but at $2, I do not think it adds that much to the native

:19:16.:19:22.

iPhone calendar. Fantastical is $4 on iPhone. I like the look of the

:19:22.:19:27.

navigation, something that can be fiddly on a small smartphones rain.

:19:27.:19:32.

You can add defence with context using voice recognition. It will

:19:32.:19:42.
:19:42.:19:42.

you can add it events. This kind of virtual assistant feature is where

:19:42.:19:46.

the power of third-party applications really is for me. Yes,

:19:46.:19:49.

there are plenty of free options out there but if paying a couple of

:19:50.:19:58.

dollars is going to simplify my life, I am all for it.

:19:58.:20:03.

For Android users, there is nothing to pay for this one. It is clear

:20:03.:20:06.

and simple with no bells or whistles and while it does not do

:20:06.:20:09.

anything particularly ground- breaking, it synchronise as with

:20:09.:20:14.

Google calendar, providing a unified experience at cost desktop

:20:14.:20:20.

and Android devices. If you want to give the native Android calendar a

:20:20.:20:26.

boost, the agenda which it is a nice, customised add-on with free

:20:26.:20:28.

and pay to versions that sit on your home screen, keeping you

:20:28.:20:33.

informed of any schedule entries as well as upcoming birthdays or

:20:33.:20:40.

especially France. -- special events. Smartphones of

:20:40.:20:47.

all flavours come with good native might not have to operate at all

:20:48.:20:52.

assistant assistant features offered by a

:20:52.:20:57.

third party or have paid Apple. If you use Out?I ? you use Out

:20:57.:21:03.

calendar, they have their own apps for a seamless a desktop T-Mobile

:21:03.:21:07.

experience. Windows phone comes with an elegant native calendar but

:21:07.:21:11.

if you want to go for a different look with some additional features,

:21:11.:21:16.

Cronos is a good option for a couple of dollars. It synchronise

:21:16.:21:20.

us seamlessly with your Microsoft account, of course, and lifestyle

:21:20.:21:30.
:21:30.:21:35.

Tile. That is the calendar sorted out.

:21:35.:21:40.

Now, time to put something in it. This is a great place to find

:21:40.:21:47.

events of interest with a database across the internet in over 230

:21:47.:21:53.

genres from football matches and concerts to all options and crochet

:21:53.:22:03.
:22:03.:22:07.

is not affiliated with ticket sellers. It does, however, have

:22:07.:22:11.

links to them. It covers US and UK events and the makers are working

:22:11.:22:16.

to expand into other territories as well. You can sign up and run your

:22:16.:22:26.
:22:26.:22:26.

events calendar from the site. It is the best way of finding out

:22:26.:22:34.

what is going on even in the most Nis of entertainment genres. --

:22:34.:22:44.

niche. Got a large file you want to send it to a Facebook friend? Stuff

:22:44.:22:48.

it down a Pipe. This lets you send files up to one of the delight

:22:48.:22:53.

through a direct link from computer to computer as long as you are both

:22:53.:23:03.
:23:03.:23:03.

online. -- 1GB. It is as fast as your computers will allow and very

:23:03.:23:07.

private. The iPhone app is in out the testing stage. The Android

:23:07.:23:17.
:23:17.:23:26.

Android this week. To celebrate, this is a Vine, iPhone of a Vine,

:23:27.:23:36.
:23:37.:23:37.

Android. Totally meta. If you have any suggestions or comments, please

:23:37.:23:47.
:23:47.:23:48.

Click takes a look at Bitcoin, the world's first digital currency. Plus, a conversation with the creator of the world wide web, Sir Tim Berners-Lee.

Includes tech news and web roundup.


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