South Korea’s crypto crackdown is looming, but crypto traders HODL on

South Korea has put in place new laws meant to curb money laundering and over-leveraging in crypto markets, taking effect in two months.
However, crypto fans have held on to their assets, even as some dropped over 90 percent following crackdown and delistings.

South Korea long established itself as one of the world’s cryptocurrency hubs, becoming pro-crypto before ‘it was cool.’ However, in recent times, the Asian country is fine-tuning its crypto policies, and leaving many casualties in its wake. new regulations have seen many exchanges face the danger of being unable to offer their services, and with this has come delistings of many altcoins. However, as several crypto fans in Korea revealed, they intend to HODL on.

South Korea formulated a law that demands every exchange make significant changes, with one of the most impactful stipulations being the need to have a relationship with a bank. They must also verify the identity of every trader.

These rules have led to a ripple effect that has seen exchanges delist up to hundreds of altcoins as they vie to enhance their relationships with banks. Upbit, the largest exchange in Korea, delisted 24 altcoins two weeks ago, including popular picks like Komodo. Bithumb, the second-largest exchange, also listed a number this week.

However, this is nothing compared to the smaller exchanges that are delisting the altcoins en masse. Probit, for instance, delisted 145 altcoins in June all at once.

An official with the Financial Services Commission (FSC), which is the regulatory body governing cryptos, commented:

The revised law itself is aimed at preventing illegal money laundering activities. There are laws on user protection and market stability pending and they should be able to further address issues with (cryptocurrency exchange) users.

Also Read: South Korean Government: Gen Z & Millennials are in massive debt because of crypto trading

South Korean traders HODL on

These delistings have had a severe effect on some of the altcoins’ prices, especially those that are locally popular. One of these is Metadium, a crypto project that describes itself as a decentralized sovereign identity platform. The crypto was especially popular in South Korea, with many traders buying it out of FOMO.

One of these is Yun Hae-ri, a 26-year-old trader. Speaking to Reuters, she revealed that she bought the crypto in April when it had peaked in prices. For her, it was a no-brainer, not because she understood cryptos or trading, but because everyone else was doing it.

She told the outlet:

I have to admit that I did not look at the operator’s financial statement, but mostly invested based on the coin’s popularity and appearance on media and friends’ recommendation.

Since its April highs, Metadium has crashed by as much as 94 percent and is trading at about 32 won (($0.0281).

Despite the price drops and looming regulatory clampdown, Korean traders are HODLing on. Lee Jai-kyung, a 27-year-old trader who invested over $35,000 in cryptos is one of those who insist they will hold on for dear life. Already, he has lost over half his investment in the market plummet.

He told Reuters:

I’m going to leave my coin investment as it is because I’ve lost so much already there’s no point in withdrawing now. More than that, I’ll be holding on to it because I believe that there will be another price surge later this year.

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Launched IOTA NFT marketplace reduces the entry barrier for new market players

The IOTA NFT Marketplace aims to solve the existing challenges of other NFT platforms like a high-fee structure.
Access to the test version of the IOTA NFT marketplace is now available as users can create free accounts on the platform.

IOTA, the open-source distributed ledger and IoT-specific blockchain platform, is now diving into the world of NFTs. On Monday, July 12, the IOTA community announced the launch of the IOTA NFT marketplace.

The launch happened on the IOTA 2.0 DevNet illustrating the future of digital assets and NFTs that are accessible to all. IOTA notes that its feeless protocol helps it to deliver the right NFT infrastructure while solving some of the existing limitations of the NFT market.

Non-fungible tokens have created a massive rage in the crypto space over the last six months. Besides, the market has witnessed NFT sales worth Millions-of-dollars in a short time. As the name suggests, non-fungible tokens help in the unique representation of assets. This could be anything like a piece of artwork, videos, images, etc.

Thus, NFTs are basically cryptographic tokens representing something unique in a digitized form. In today’s world, anything can be digitized and represented as an NFT. While NFTs have seen major market acceptance because of their value proposition, IOTA thinks that there are still many drawbacks.

With the existing setup of the NFT market, getting the NFTs to the buyer is very expensive. It involves high-end costs like the minting fee for creating the NFT, platform listing costs additional, then comes the commission on sales by the NFT platform, the actual transaction costs on the blockchain, and many more.

With its efforts, IOTA wants to get rid of the fee-based architecture thereby boosting business adoption as well as the use of IOTA technology. The goal is to support smaller independent artists who can’t afford such steep fees. This is especially true for NFTs hosted on the Ethereum blockchain where the transaction fee is very high.

IOTA NFT marketplace – futuristic, fast, and feeless

The IOTA NFT marketplace comes with a promise of a more accessible future for NFTs. IOTA has ensured that all the transactions on the network are feeless.

At the same time, the IOTA Digital Assets framework makes sure that minting fees are negligible. However, like other NFT marketplaces, IOTA also keeps commissions intact for the NFT marketplace, in order to power the infrastructure.

The #IOTA NFT marketplace, independently built by @NFTIOTA, shows how easy it will be to trade digital assets on IOTA 2.0.

Mint your #NFT and trade the NFTs you love – all on our fully decentralized IOTA 2.0 DevNet. Feeless and green!

— IOTA (@iota) July 12, 2021

Overall, the IOTA NFT marketplace seeks to reduce the entry barrier for market participants making it relatively cheaper than others. Access to the IOTA NFT marketplace is currently available in the test mode only. In the test version, the IOTA NFT marketplace directly manages the wallet. This is similar to some of the major exchanges managing their client wallets. The official announcement notes:

We are stunned by how fast the IOTA NFT marketplace has been realized. Only a few weeks following the launch of our DevNet, they have already built an impressive test version of their future product. We are proud to have such an amazing ecosystem that works with us to achieve a more open, trusted and accessible DLT environment.

On the official website, users can create a free account and claim their IOTA 2.0 DevNet tokens through the integrated faucet and mint their NFTs. The process is free, fast, and absolutely straightforward. As part of the broader use case, the general public can also access the decentralized IOTA 2.0 DevNet.

IOTA has been undertaking other big projects as well in the market. Earlier this month, IOTA joined hands with Trademark East Africa to facilitate paperless trade in East Africa.

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Bitcoin back in accumulation suggesting imminent breakout but institutions managing risk

Data from Glassnode shows that traders are withdrawing roughly 2,000 BTC from centralized exchanges daily.
Although interest in Bitcoin is still high, sophisticated traders and institutions are cautious and are spreading their risk.

As Bitcoin continues to trade in the $31,000 and $35,000 price range and analysts continue to differ on the direction the digital asset will take next. Despite this, investors continue to accumulate. According to data from Glassnode, Bitcoin reserves in centralized exchanges has fallen to levels not seen since April when Bitcoin was trading at its $65,000 ATH levels. At the time, the market craze was been driven by FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) with most analysts predicting a $100,000 BTC price tag before the end of the year. Glassnode notes that much of the BTC being withdrawn ended up in the Grayscale GBTC Trust and with institutions.

The research firm further details that there are currently around 2,000 BTC (worth roughly $66 million) outflows in centralized exchanges daily. The researcher’s notes;

On a 14-day moving average basis, the last two weeks, in particular, have seen a more positive return to exchange outflows, at a rate of ~2k BTC per day.

The new trend suggests that traders are confident and are in particular expecting a strong move in the short term. When the market is optimistic, traders are interested in purchasing and withdrawing their holdings from exchanges. The opposite is true when the market is cautious, traders are interested in selling and keep their holdings in exchanges for fast trade executions.

While retail traders are seemingly optimistic, the trend with large investors and institutions who prefer crypto funds to crypto exchanges seems to be one of caution.

Coinshare’s report suggests institutions uncertain of Bitcoin

The most recent report by digital asset manager CoinShares shows that there has been a relative change in small-cap and large-cap funds. Investors are increasingly withdrawing from Bitcoin and Ethereum, growing their exposure in multi-asset products. The firm wrote;

While the inflows [in multi-asset investment funds]remain relatively small in comparison to Bitcoin and Ethererum, the data does imply that investors are increasingly looking to diversify their digital asset holdings,

With traders also taking a key interest in small-cap coins, if and when the Bitcoin breakout takes place, altcoins are set to follow the trend and rally.

1 / Digital asset investment products saw minor outflows totalling US$4m last week in what was the quietest trading week since October 2020

— James Butterfill (@jbutterfill) July 12, 2021

Bitcoin remains hesitant despite developments around the technology suggesting that the worst is behind. Its recent turmoil was largely influenced by China’s mining crackdown. With the FUD over and most miners relocating to other regions and resuming operations, most traders expect Bitcoin to make a recovery.

Read More: Bitcoin on recovery mode: BTC exchange inflows drop, miners start accumulating

At the time of press, Bitcoin is still consolidating within a range but after a 3 percent drop has drifted to the $32,000 support.

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Met police seize crypto worth $250 million in a fresh money laundering investigation

Met police seize the largest crypto in UK history after previously confiscating £114 million ($158 million).

A 39-year-old woman is under investigation after the police received information from an unidentified person.

The UK has over the past few years taken stringent measures to put the use of crypto under control to offset its role in money laundering and terrorist financing. Just recently, the Met police seized around £114 million ($158 million) in cryptocurrency in what was termed as the largest ever seizure in the country’s history. Barely a month after, a record £180 million ($250 million) suspected to be proceeds of money laundering has been confiscated. 

According to a police report, detectives of the Met’s Economic Crime Command received information from an unidentified person about the transfer of criminal assets. Their investigation led them to a 39-year-old woman who was arrested on June 24 on suspicion of offences relating to money laundering. She was, however, released on bail as the investigation continues. This operation forms part of an ongoing investigation into international money laundering which has led to the seizure of a record amount of cryptocurrency totalling £294 million ($407 million). 

Emerging digital platforms contributing to increasing organized crimes

Metropolitan Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Graham McNulty noted that the development of digital platforms has led to an increasing number of organized crimes using cryptocurrency as a tool to launder money, though cash is still used in the criminal world. 

The detectives on this case have worked tirelessly and meticulously to trace millions of pounds worth of cryptocurrency suspected of being linked to criminality and now being laundered to hide the trail. Those linked to this money are working hard to hide it. Our investigation will stop at nothing to disrupt the transfer and identify those involved.

He admitted that the crypto ecosystem was very difficult to deal with years ago. However, there are currently trained officers and specialist units working to stay ahead of those using crypto for illicit activities. 

Detective Constable Joe Ryan disclosed that the investigation will continue to ensure all involved were arrested and curb the activity. 

Less than a month ago we successfully seized £114million in cryptocurrency. Our investigation since then has been complex and wide-ranging. We have worked hard to trace this money and identify the criminality it may be linked to. Today’s seizure is another significant landmark in this investigation which will continue for months to come as we hone in on those at the center of this suspected money laundering operation.

The UK has taken a strict position on crypto by requiring crypto firms to register with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to continue to operate within their jurisdiction. This is to help inform citizens on firms that are compliant with their laws, and also control the use of crypto for money laundering, tax evasion, and terrorist financing. 

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Australian government offers $5.6 Million AUD grant to two blockchain projects

The funding aims to explore the use of blockchain tech to bring supply chains solutions for Australia’s Critical Minerals and Food and Beverage sectors.
It will also help to substantially reduce compliance burdens associated with the process.

In a major announcement on Monday, July 13, the Australian government announced an AUD $5.6 million grant to two blockchain tech platforms that support supply chain solutions. The investment has happened through the country’s Blockchain Pilot Grants program.

The recipients of this funding are Everledger (QLC) and (VIC). These two blockchain-based pilots will investigate the application of blockchain in supply chain solutions. This project specifically focuses on enhancing the productivity and competitiveness of Australia’s Critical Minerals and Food and Beverage sectors.

Besides, the Scott Morrison government stated that the research by these companies will help to ease regulatory compliance burdens. It will also fuel Australia’s adoption of blockchain technology while assisting businesses to solve real-world problems. Speaking about this project, Australia’s Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Christian Porter said:

The Blockchain Pilot Grants will demonstrate the potential for blockchain to help businesses to save money and cut red tape by improving processes such as tracking products throughout the supply chain and transferring customer information.

These two successful projects will also highlight opportunities to improve the technical and regulatory environment for blockchain in Australia, bolster blockchain literacy and support collaboration between Australian governments, the private sector and blockchain companies.

The disbursement of funds through blockchain pilot grants

Out of the total funding, Everledger (QLD) will receive a net of AUD $3.0 million to investigate the use of blockchain tech for digital certification of critical minerals throughout the extraction and movement phases. Thus, all companies in this space will maintain adherence to compliance regulations. Simultaneously, it will boost the demand for Australian products in the international market.

On the other hand, (VIC) receives the remaining AUD $2,663,000 in the grant. The platform will leverage the blockchain tech to automate key reporting processes under the Excise system. Thus, companies operating in this sector will reduce compliance costs linked to the creation, storage and transportation of their products.

The latest funding comes under the Australian Government’s Digital Business package, announced in Federal Budget 2020-2021. Besides, it will directly align with the Government’s National Blockchain Roadmap announced last year in February 2020.

“The Blockchain Pilot Grants builds on the National Blockchain Roadmap which ensures Australia is well-positioned to take advantage of the opportunities this technology can enable,” said Porter.

This move from the Australian government shows its keenness to explore the merging technology. While the government is initiating measures to foster blockchain development, the citizens don’t have many friendly views on crypto-assets.

A recent survey shows ~75% of Australians think bitcoin is a bubble. On the other hand, a vast majority of Australians also think BTC to be a speculative asset.

Read More: Nearly 75% of Australians think Bitcoin is a bubble that will eventually burst- Research

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Energy Harbor partners with Standard Power in Ohio for nuclear Bitcoin mining power

Energy Harbor has maintained that it can ensure all of its BTC-mining endeavours rely on renewable energy.
Bitcoin miners have been compelled to shift their operations to crypto-friendlier grounds, such as in the U.S.

Energy Harbor Corporation (EHC), recently signed a 5-year deal with Standard Power to launch an eco-friendly Bitcoin mining operation. The latter is a leading hosting provider for blockchain mining companies. Following the launch, the carbon-free energy plant will provide electricity to a bitcoin mining unit in Coshocton, Ohio.

The two parties are yet to disclose the size of the mining plant or how much energy will be consumed. However, Energy Harbor has maintained that it can ensure all of its endeavours rely on renewable energy. According to a PR shared by Energy Harbor, the Bitcoin mining facility will begin receiving sustainable power later this year.

Harbor for Bitcoin mining

China has continued to widen its crackdown on cryptocurrency miners. The country has enforced these regulations to meet international agreements on carbon emissions and to cur ‘financial risk’. For these reasons, Bitcoin miners have been compelled to shift their operations to crypto-friendlier grounds, such as in the U.S.

For others, yet, this has become a business opportunity as they develop renewable energy mining set-ups. Such operations have intensified especially after Tesla CEO Elon Musk scrutinized Bitcoin for its high energy footprint. Musk further declined payment for his Tesla EVs in Bitcoin, causing a massive price crash in May. The tycoon said he might reconsider this decision, should 51 percent of Bitcoin mining utilize clean energy.

Standard Power’s CEO, Maxim Serezhin commented on this development saying:

We selected Ohio because of its low electricity costs with the availability of carbon-free sources of energy. By partnering with Energy Harbor, we have proactively structured our hosting capabilities to ensure that 100% of the power associated with this facility is carbon-free.

Ohio state also makes a strategic location for miners as it has friendly cryptocurrency policies. For instance, its Governor, John Kasich, signed a bill in August 2018 to make blockchain transactions acknowledgeable in state courts. Moreover, in November of the same year, Ohio legalized Bitcoin as a form of payment for taxes.

Pursuit of green BTC

The Proof-of-Work (PoW) mining algorithm has reduced the luster of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies using the same reward technique. US Treasure Secretary Janet Yellen admonished Bitcoin mining during a New York Times DealBook conference saying:

It’s an extremely inefficient way to conduct transactions, and the amount of energy consumed in those transactions is staggering.

The Bitcoin Mining Council is attempting to bring a better perception of Bitcoin besides promoting sustainable mining methods. The group was formed by several North American miners and is backed by MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor.

With the aim to become a reference point for the bitcoin mining industry, the Council has published statistics questioning the alarming data cited by politicians. One of their findings, tweeted by Saylor, stated that “mining electricity mix increased to 56% sustainable in Q2 2021, making Bitcoin one of the cleanest industries in the world.”

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Cardano developer portal goes live, 10 NFTAs minted to celebrate milestone

The Cardano Foundation has launched a developer portal to aid developers to build on the network.
Ten NFTAs were minted in celebration of the launch.

The Cardano Foundation on July 12 announced the launch of the Cardano Developer Portal. The portal launch was announced in a tweet. According to the tweet, the goal of the portal is to make building on Cardano easier using ‘brand new content and resources.’ 

Created by Ethereum co-founder Charles Hoskinson, Cardano is a third-generation, Proof of Stake (PoS) blockchain platform. The decentralised platform was launched in 2017 with its native coin ADA named after the mathematician Ada Lovelace. It was created to be more efficient than existing Proof of Work networks like Ethereum.  Scalability, interoperability, and sustainability are touted as key features that put Cardano above PoW networks like Ethereum.

Easier building on the Cardano blockchain

The developer portal showcases some tools and features on the network that developers will find useful. These include; The ability to integrate Cardano into websites and applications, NFT and token creation without the use of smart contracts, and Transaction tracking through the use of metadata.

It’s finally here! And we are accepting all builds

Find out about the topics covered in the #Cardano Developer Portal and the world’s first (10) minted NFTAs on the #Cardano #blockchain
Dev Portal

— Cardano Foundation (@CardanoStiftung) July 13, 2021

To celebrate the launch, the team minted the first-ever Non-Fungible Tokens of Appreciation (NFTAs) on the Cardano network.

“After months of writing, polishing and checking, we are confident the portal now has a very solid basis, covering everything currently possible on the Cardano mainnet. Whether you want to implement transaction metadata, mint native tokens, integrate Cardano, operate a stake pool or get your project funded: there is something for pretty much everyone. All this, right before the Alonzo hard fork which will bring smart contract capabilities. So yes, I am super excited,” says Tommy Kammerer, Developer Community Lead.  

The ten NFTAs are all based on thumbs-up photos of Cardano community members expressing their approval for the newly launched portal. They come with a QR code, which, when scanned, leads to the Cardano blockchain explorer where a user can verify ownership of the token. The tokens also grant the bearer the chance to highlight a topic of choice on the developer portal.

Sidney Vollmer, head of Brand and Communications at the Cardano Foundation added;

 Both the scope of topics covered in the Portal and the way that we are promoting them with these NFTAs show the amazing possibilities Cardano offers. It is something lots of people still need to get accustomed to. With the help of our community, they will.

 Real-life applications on the network

An example of a tangible, real-life application of the network’s identity management and traceability features is its use in Ethiopia to create a student and teacher database.

In April 2021, the government of Ethiopia revealed that it had entered a deal for the creation of a country-wide database of  5 million teachers and students. Using a decentralised digital identity solution, individual IDs of the students and teachers from some 3,500 schools will be created for the purpose of storing and tracking educational records. Minister of Education Getahun Mekuria believes the database will improve the country quality of education. The project is expected to be completed after 2022.

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Jeffrey Dahmer – The Milwaukee Cannibal

Jaffrey Lionel Dahmer is also popular as the Milwaukee Monster or the Milwaukee Cannibal. He was an American sex offender and serial killer who has killed 17 boys and men from the year 1978 to 1991.


The crimes committed by Jeffrey Dahmer

Dahmer’s great fantasy, recurring since his adolescent sexual awakening, was to have a lover over whom he could exercise “total control” and have him by his side for as long as possible. But he was unable to do so by consensus, so his standard procedure – or as he called it, ‘his plan’ – was to pick up a man, take him home, drug him into unconsciousness, kill him, have sex with him.

In addition, he used to take pictures of the whole process: the police found in his apartment 83 Polaroids with different phases of the dismemberment process.x

His first two murders happened unplanned. The first, at the age of 18, took place when his mother left him home alone for weeks and led to the materialization of another fantasy: picking up a hitchhiker and exercise full control over it.

So, he took home a handsome hitchhiker and they shared joints and alcohol until he wanted to leave and Dahmer stopped him by killing him with a barbell.

The second time, 8 years later, it happened unintentionally since he took a lover to a hotel room and found him dead next to him in the morning. Either due to excess alcohol or a dissociative state, Dahmer was not aware of having murdered him although the responsibility was evident because they were in bed together and he had defensive wounds on his arms.

From then on, he gave in more and more frequently to his impulses: he committed two other crimes in 1988, one in 1989, four in 1990, and eight in 1991, until he was arrested in July.


The police failed more than a fairground shotgun

Dahmer was able to be detained on numerous occasions but the lack of police expertise allowed him to continue his necrophilic orgies. For example, after killing and dismembering his first victim, he set out to take his remains, which he put in three large garbage bags, to a landfill.

But on the way, two police cars stopped him because he was stepping on the continuous line. In a situation of maximum stress for Dahmer, he was able to remain calm and by asking what he was carrying in the bags he was able to convince them that he was going to throw out the trash. But beware: all this happened at 3 in the morning and the car gave off a nauseating smell of a decomposing corpse.


We never suspected anything, always said hello when throwing out the trash

Quiet and somewhat shy, Dahmer was a very polite man who spoke calmly and displayed a rare charisma. He had quite an attractive physical appearance (tall, blond, blue eyes, in good shape) although he had a strange gait with his arms close to his body that was accentuated by his drooping shoulders.

It is not surprising that those who are guided by the saying “the face is the mirror of the soul” were greatly disappointed when his atrocities came to light.

And, let’s face it if you ring the bell and through the peephole, you see Charles Manson with his insane gaze and a swastika tattooed on his forehead, surely they would not open the door. To add insult to injury, the same neighbors who were not suspicious of Jeffrey’s nice man thought he was cooking tripe when he boiled human remains to separate the meat from the bones.

However, several women offered themselves to Dahmer in marriage to the attractive and angelic image that he displayed in his court appearances.


Alienated or not alienated, that is the question

Either because he was finally able to abandon the double life he led or because the evidence against him was indefensible, Dahmer pleaded guilty to 17 crimes.

The point was, he pleaded guilty but alienated, while the prosecution sought a conviction of guilt without alienation. Under the laws, where there is no death penalty, the difference was that, although Dahmer was never going to hit the street again, his confinement would take place in a mental institution if he won the defense or, otherwise, in a correctional facility.

I am not a racist, in fact, many of my victims are not black:

Dahmer used to be outraged when he was called a racist because most of his victims were black. He wanted to make it clear that he had nothing against blacks and if he killed, raped, tortured, etc. to men of this ethnic group it was simply because they were the most numerous in the gay bars where they moved when their murderous activity raged.

Let’s not confuse things, he came to say: call me anything but racist, please.

Great movies based on true crimes

Man has long offered us epic human adventures. Tragic or memorable, these stories also made the heyday of cinema.

Adapted for the big screen, films inspired by true stories are often the most gripping. Involved in the story, the spectator watches them as a witness to the action.

Here is a non-exhaustive list of the 10 films inspired by true stories that have marked the cinema by establishing themselves as references of the genre, which we advise you to see at least once in your life:


1. American Sniper – Clint Eastwood (2015):

Chris Kyle is one of the best marksmen of the American army, sent to Iraq. He is so gifted that he is given the nickname “The Legend”. But back in the country, “normal” life struggles to regain its course.

Project much discussed in the United States, there is nonetheless a success still signed by Clint Eastwood, with a Bradley Cooper who managed to make us forget his comedic escapades from “The Hangover” during this film.


2. Conjuring: The Warren Files – James Wan (2013):

Ed and Lorraine Warren have been revealed to the general public for having, by order of a judge, investigated the notorious “owned” house in Amityville. 

True investigators of the paranormal world, the only couple mandated by the church in the 1970s for (in particular) exorcisms, this first film reveals the underside of one of their most terrifying cases. So, if you doubted it, the forces of paranormal exist and this movie will keep you awake for a while.


3. The Wolf of Wall Street – Martin Scorsese (2013):

The film chronicles the rise of the wacky trader Jordan Belfort in the 80s on Wall Street when traders were considered the kings of finance. The role of Jordan is perfectly interpreted by Leonardo DiCaprio whether in his most serious moments as in his excesses.

On the program: Sex, drugs, alcohol, and rock’n’roll during 3 rhythmic hours, filmed by the great Martin Scorsese.


4. War Dogs – Todd Phillips – August 3 (2016):

Two friends in their twenties, more used to smoking joints than to working, will succeed in winning a large call for tenders posted online by the Pentagon and grab an order arms worth 300 million dollars, during the second Iraq war, in 2007. The contract? Arm the Afghan soldiers. But the mission will put them in contact with disreputable people, some of whom are even part of the American government.

Jonah Hill (Efraim) and Miles Teller (David), led by director Todd Phillips (“The Hangover”), deliver a completely crazy and hilarious performance in this film inspired by a story larger than life. 

War Dogs mix action film and comedy, as if “Lord of War” had been directed by Judd Apatow more turned on than ever. Fans of comedy and action will be in heaven.


5. Once Upon a Time in America – Sergio Leone (1984):

Once Upon a Time in America spans different periods in the history of the United States, notably from the 1920s to the 1960s, from Prohibition to the highest levels of the United States. 

Don’t stop at 4:11 of the film! Admittedly, it lasts a long time and seems inaccessible, but the young Robert de Niro and the general direction are well worth the detour. And the music of Ennio Morricone is a feast for the ears.


6. Malcolm X – Spike Lee (1992):

The story of the black American leader of “Nation of Islam”. His childhood, prison, his faith, his marriage, and his murder. Just the mention of Denzel Washington’s name should be enough to convince you to see this biopic of an essential character in American history.


7. The Last Samurai – Edward Zwick (2003):

The Last Samurai is a free adaptation of the events of the revolt of the Satsuma samurai clan in 1877 against the Imperial Japanese Army.

Tom Cruise delivers in this film a fabulous and convincing interpretation of his role as captain of the United States Army.


8. Catch Me If You Can – Steven Spielberg (2002):

Frank Abagnale Jr is the most famous forger of the 1960s. The film is about how an FBI agent, Carl Hanratty, stalked him for years before he caught him. Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks appear at the top of their acting game in a fast-paced, exciting, and stylish ’60s chase that pleases the eyes.


9. Aviator – Martin Scorsese (2005):

Aviator tells the story of American billionaire Howard Hughes, industrialist and pioneer of civil aviation, from his glory to his loss. A portrait both magical and mysterious, of this multifaceted seducer, played by Leonardo DiCaprio, who should have won an Oscar for his game (but that is up to us).


10. Into the Wild – Sean Penn (2008):

Christopher McCandless, 22 years old, freshly graduated and very bright feels a lack of surprise in his existence which pushes him to hit the road leaving everything behind. Realization of actor Oscar winner Sean Penn, Into the Wild is a hymn to freedom. Carried by the music of Eddie Vedder, it will give you a love of the great outdoors.

Artificial Intelligence to identify crimes committed by gangs:

Crimes are not something new. There is evidence that criminals have been around since we have written records. What has not happened so far is that thanks to those previous records, crime can be prosecuted and even prevented. Artificial Intelligence (AI) as a tool against crime is already used in several countries around the world.

As artificial intelligence is a broad-spectrum tool — driving autonomous vehicles, helping political decision-making, or improving our health are some of its benefits. It is a rare crixqme sector that it will not pursue. It is already used to manage police resources, detect false reports, solve crimes and even advise criminals to prevent them from going back to their old ways. We take a tour of some of the AI ​​tools used in crime prevention.


Artificial intelligence to solve crimes?

In mid-2018, the Netherlands published a program capable of rescuing the cold cases, open cases whose tracks had long since gone cold. A large number of crimes end up archived for lack of threads to pull, but it is expected that the development of artificial intelligence will be able to rescue a few. At least if police reports are digitized, of course. Most of them are still handwritten.

Also in the Netherlands, the Terre des Hommes association designed a bait for pedophiles. Her name is Sweetie and she is a fake girl who chats looking for criminals. In just 10 weeks, Sweetie was able to find 20,000 pedophiles and identify at least 1,000. Scott Robert Hanses, an Australian, was the first to be arrested. This happened in 2013. The program is being used by police around the world.

With funding from the European Union, in 2017 VALCRI (Visual Analytics for Sense-making in Criminal Intelligence Analysis) began to be developed, a program that uses artificial intelligence combined with visual analysis and closed-circuit cameras to identify suspects. At the moment, it is still in the experimentation phase, but it promises results.

The use of cameras in AI is very common because we have been training advanced algorithms with millions of images for years. Google Image Search is one such example. Another is the photographic retouching that we find in mobile phones such as the Huawei Mate20 Pro or Huawei P20 Pro, capable of selecting advanced settings at the time of the shooting.


The importance of ethics in pre-crime

Knowing when a crime will be committed is impossible unless you have reliable data to guide you in this regard. The idea is not new. In 1931, Chicago-based criminologists Clifford R Shaw and Henry D McKay began collecting data on juvenile delinquency. They concluded that location and time frame are key values ​​when pursuing future crime.

Today, pre-crime units use big data to establish so-called “hot spots,” places where the next crime is most likely to emerge. However, what data to use is also key if you are looking for ethical systems. We have been wrong in the past.

For example, the first pre-crime systems mobilized assets to marginal neighborhoods due to the bias of the police who for years had directed their operations there. This bias has been corrected in New York with an AI-based facial recognition system that has managed to locate 21,000 identity frauds in a matter of two years.

Also in New York, they use the CompStat program, which aims to prosecute minor crimes. Human trafficking mafias, for example, use capital from equally illicit activities, such as cloning cards or robberies at ATMs. To do this, they monitor certain profiles throughout the city in an attempt to nip crime in the bud.

At the same time, in the Californian town of Santa Cruz, they use PredPol, which from historical data can determine, hour by hour, where a robbery or gang fight is most likely to take place. Something similar, although much more invasive, they do in China with programs like Watrix, just released in November 2018.

Looking at our country, in recent years a police team has managed to develop, with considerable success. A system capable of distinguishing false from true complaints by how they have been written.

A false declaration not only implies the loss of time of the agent who collects it after it a device is activated that investigates the event. Thousands of euros simply for starting the case, many more if it continues.


What if you stop crime?

In England, they have opted for a different approach to pre-crime. If China imprisons without prior notice those who believe they will commit a crime, New York mobilizes patrols to hot spots and scans documents to verify if a complaint is behind a crime, in England, they have chosen to advise criminals not to repeat offenders. Also using AI.

In this way, Artificial Intelligence (AI) has much to contribute to the creation of a more just society, and the prosecution of uncivil behavior is one of the first steps.