• The Future of the Self-Driving Car
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    You sit in the driver’s seat of your car––but instead of driving, you are doing something else entirely. Maybe you’re drinking coffee and reading the morning news. Maybe you’re watching Netflix on your phone. Maybe you’re just catching up on some sleep. What may seem like sheer fantasy may soon become reality, and in fact […]

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  • How Trump Won the Rust Belt
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    In the aftermath of the 2016 presidential election, one question that many still ponder is just how did Donald Trump manage to win the Rust Belt region: specifically the states of Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin? This question is justified- these three states have all remained blue since the 1992 election which Bill Clinton won. On top of that, nearly every electoral vote prediction had Hillary Clinton taking the three states. So just how did Trump manage to steal these three states from under Clinton?

    First, it’s important to look back on the history of the Rust Belt. The Rust Belt gets its name from its industrial past, largely in steel and car manufacturing. It was considered the heart of industrial work in the United States, and this created many blue collar jobs for citizens of this region. However, in the 1970’s the steel industry in the U.S. began to die. Before anyone could do anything, factories were closed, jobs were destroyed, and many blue-collar workers who had made their lives off of this industry were left wondering what to do next. The economy of the Rust Belt collapsed, and this region that had once promised well-paying jobs to thousands of people was transformed into a place of lost dreams. This economical turmoil in the Rust Belt didn’t just appear and go away- it still ripples into today. For example, Detroit, once known for its car manufacturing, is still struggling economically today.

    Detroit in the 1930s: nydailynews.com

    Detroit in the 1930s via nydailynews.com

    These economic circumstances have created an area of people all dreaming of change and getting back to the way life once was, when they were happier and had well-paying jobs.

    Donald Trump’s campaign focused heavily on these same kinds of concerns. For example, Donald Trump’s campaign motto “Make America Great Again” is a summation of these feelings- the desire to be successful again, to have jobs again, to achieve the American Dream. Trump built his campaign upon appealing to the dissatisfied people who had lived in an economically unstable area for decades. He tried to give them the hope that, with him in office, they could flourish once again.

    Trump Supporters at a Pennsylvania High School Rally via John Moore/Getty Images

    Trump Supporters at a Pennsylvania High School Rally via John Moore/Getty Images

    It apparently worked. Trump was able to win the popular vote in all of these states, giving him a sizable number of electoral votes, which ultimately helped him massively in winning the entire election. In fact, some political analysts attribute his win to these states.

    It will be interesting to see in 2020 if the Democratic Party is able to win back the Rust Belt, or if the Republican Party will be able to hold onto it again. A lot of this relies on what Trump does in his presidency- will he be able to fulfill the promise of creating jobs in the Rust Belt, or will this all turn out to be a case of misplaced hope? Only time will tell, and it will be interesting to see what happens as we head into this next controversial presidency.

    If you want to read more on how Donald Trump was able to win the election, check out Matt’s article here.

     

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  • Examining the Yahoo Hack
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    Many would say that Yahoo has lost the prominence that it once held in the early 2000’s. Yahoo has fallen behind the companies such as Google, Microsoft, and Facebook, and shows no promise of catching back up.

    But, believe it or not, Yahoo has over 1 billion active monthly users. The important thing to remember is that Yahoo is not one thing but many things: Its services range from email, news,Q&A, and even fantasy football. This would explain why there are so many user accounts registered on Yahoo, and why it would be such a big target for hackers.

    The hack took place back in 2014, but was not reported to the public until recently. There were reportedly over 500 million accounts affected by the hack, half of Yahoo’s monthly active user count. A former Yahoo head believes it could be even more, saying “I believe it to be bigger than what’s being reported”, and later said “How they came up with 500 is a mystery,”. The former Yahoo head instead believed that the number was closer to 1 billion, or perhaps even beyond.

    The amount of people who could be or have been stolen from, on account of this hack,is incredible. Hacking is growing increasingly dangerous as we start to rely more and more on our computers, cell phones, and tablets. Using simple scams, a hacker could access your password, credit card information, name, social security number -anything. Whatever you put online could be theirs.

    “Is someone really going to go through all that trouble just to get my password?” This kind of question is heard very often, and the answer is somewhat simple -yes. People are willing to go after your information because it really is no trouble at all. A hacker doesn’t even need to target you specifically, rather, they can access a database that stores millions of user’s information, and steal not only from you, but from anyone whose information is stored in the database. This is precisely what happened in the Yahoo hack ; rather than trying to target 500 million people specifically, they breached the large user database and collected user information in mass.

    And now, all that stolen user information could lead to hacked emails, social media accounts, text messages, all from a simple Yahoo account. Who would’ve thought that signing up for Yahoo fantasy football could lead to such disaster?

    This whole occurrence isn’t working out well for Yahoo, expectedly. Verizon, who has been planning on buying Yahoo, is reportedly offering to pay $1 billion less than their original proposal  do to these recent revelations.

    If we can learn one thing from this hack, it is to to be as safe and secure online as you can be, because we are all susceptible to being hacked. Do you have the same password for every account? Maybe you should change that. Do you get weird emails with strange links? I’d recommend trashing those ones. All and all, cybercrime is becoming increasingly popular do to its ease and quick results, and we should do whatever possible to fight back and protect ourselves.

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  • Money Talks, and So Do The American People
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    As the battle for the Democratic nomination in the 2016 presidential election continues, Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton have received around equal fundraising for their campaigns thus far, with Bernie just edging Hillary out. As of March 31st, Hillary Clinton has raised $182.2 million, and Bernie Sanders has raised $182.9 million. This may not seem […]

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  • AmazonFresh: A Fresh New Start for Amazon in 2016?
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    Amazon is making headlines again with yet another potentially game changing subsidiary, this time centered on dominating the online food market. This new subsidiary is called “AmazonFresh”. Its focus is on delivering grocery products directly to consumer’s homes. Delivering food directly to customers isn’t something new- companies such as Peapod and FreshDirect have already been […]

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