After announcing a major profit shortfall, a product rollback and layoffs of 40 percent of its workforce, Blackberry Ltd. now says it is going private.Blackberry says it is accepting a $9-a-share offer from Fairfax Financial Holdings, which will essentially value the deal at $4.7 billion. Fairfax already owns 10 percent of Blackberry’s shares.It is not technically a done deal. Fairfax made the offer as head of a consortium of investors, which still needs to formally get financing. Fairfax has six weeks to perform due diligence on the company, during which time Blackberry could seek another buyer. There have been reports that former co-CEO Mike Lazaridis had been trying to line up partners for an offer.It is the latest in a dramatic downfall for Blackberry. Formerly known as Research in Motion, the company once cornered the market on enterprise communications, with its devices so prominent in use as phones and email-communication tools they were dubbed “crackberries.”But the addiction wore off as users were wowed by the technological advances inherent in smartphones like Apple’s iPhone and Samsung’s Galaxy, which went from being consumer darlings to must-have’s in the workplace.It didn’t help that Blackberry announced a series of products that hit the market with a resounding thud. Last week, it reported an earnings outlook that fell well short of expectations and a restructuring that would scale back its product line and call for the shedding of 40 percent of its employees. 2 min read Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Now September 23, 2013 Enroll Now for Free This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience.
3 min read October 2, 2015 Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. T-Mobile’s CEO John Legere is angry again and this time for very good reason. A hacker has snatched the highly personal records of some 15 million current and potential T-Mobile customers in the U.S.The massive breach, first discovered on Sept. 15, 2015, impacted people who applied for credit with the telecommunications giant through Experian between Sept. 1, 2013, and Sept. 16, 2015. That’s two years’ worth of sensitive identifying data that T-Mobile uses to check credit ratings possibly making the rounds on the black market.Related: In Government Hack, the Number of Fingerprints Stolen Has Jumped to 5.6 [email protected] I get it. We’re working as fast as possible to provide a second I.D. monitoring and protection service option— John Legere (@JohnLegere) October 2, 2015The stolen information includes victims’ home addresses, Social Security numbers and birth dates along with driver’s license, passport and military I.D. numbers, among other information. More than enough crumbs for ne’er-do-wells to rip off people’s identities without trying too terribly hard.Legere broke the bad news yesterday in a post on his company’s website that aired his frustration over the incident. “Obviously I am incredibly angry about this data breach and we will institute a thorough review of our relationship with Experian,” he said, “but right now my top concern and first focus is assisting any and all consumers affected. I take our customer and prospective customer privacy VERY seriously. This is no small issue for us.”Related: Judge Allows Class-Action Lawsuit Against Target in Data BreachHe went on to assure customers that none of T-Mobile’s systems and networks were hacked and that no payment card or bank account numbers were exposed in the Experian intrusion. Experian, for its part, also noted that no banking data was swept up in the hacker’s haul.Good news: Experian encrypted the SSNs. Bad news: The encryption was “compromised”. Whoops. https://t.co/VcbEv3pJ1z pic.twitter.com/w1o7wW5qzY— Christopher Soghoian (@csoghoian) October 1, 2015Some of the pilfered data was encrypted, but Experian has determined that it may have been compromised anyway. The global financial services firm said on its website that it notified federal and international law enforcement agencies upon discovering the “unauthorized party access” to the T-Mobile data and is continuing to investigate the theft and closely monitor its systems. The identity of the hacker is not yet known and, frankly, may never be.Experian is offering those impacted by the break-in two years of free credit monitoring and identity theft resolution services.Related: 8 of the Biggest Data Breaches Ever and How They Happened (Infographic) Register Now »
Return to article. Long Description Return to article. Long DescriptionA solution turns green as it pulls cobalt from a spent lithium-ion cathode. A Rice University laboratory is developing an environmentally friendly method to recover valuable metals from used batteries. Photo by Jeff Fitlow“This has been attempted before with acids,” said Rice graduate student and lead author Kimmai Tran. “They’re effective, but they’re corrosive and not eco-friendly. As a whole, recycling lithium-ion batteries is typically expensive and a risk to workers.”Other processes also have drawbacks, she said. Pyrometallurgy involves crushing and mixing at extreme temperatures, and the harmful fumes require scrubbing. Hydrometallurgy requires caustic chemicals, while other “green” solvents that extract metal ions often require additional agents or high-temperature processes to fully capture them.“The nice thing about this deep eutectic solvent is that it can dissolve a wide variety of metal oxides,” Tran said. “It’s literally made of a chicken feed additive and a common plastic precursor that, when mixed together at room temperature, form a clear, relatively nontoxic solution that has effective solvating properties.”A deep eutectic solvent is a mixture of two or more compounds that freezes at temperatures much lower than each of its precursors. In that way, she said, one can literally obtain a liquid from a simple combination of solids.“The large depression of freezing and melting points is due to the hydrogen bonds formed between the different chemicals,” Tran said. “By selecting the right precursors, inexpensive ‘green’ solvents with interesting properties can be fabricated.”When Tran joined, the Rice group was already testing a eutectic solution as an electrolyte in next-generation high-temperature supercapacitors.“We tried to use it in metal oxide supercapacitors, and it was dissolving them,” said Rice research scientist and co-corresponding author Babu Ganguli. “The color of the solution would change.” Rice University graduate student Kimmai Tran and her colleagues have developed an environmentally friendly solution to remove valuable cobalt and lithium metals from spent lithium-ion batteries. (Photo by Jeff Fitlow/Rice University) Share4NEWS RELEASEEditor’s note: Links to video and high-resolution images for download appear at the end of this release.David [email protected] [email protected] ‘blue-green’ solution for recycling world’s batteriesRice scientists show solvent leaches cobalt, lithium for reuse from spent batteriesHOUSTON – (April 1, 2019) – Rice University researchers literally have a solution to deal with the glut of used lithium-ion batteries left behind by the ever-increasing demand for electric vehicles, cellphones and other electronic devices.The Rice lab of materials scientist Pulickel Ajayan used an environmentally friendly deep eutectic solvent to extract valuable elements from the metal oxides commonly used as cathodes in lithium-ion batteries. The goal, researchers said, is to curtail the use of harsh processes to recycle batteries and keep them out of landfills.The solvent, made of commodity products choline chloride and ethylene glycol, extracted more than 90 percent of cobalt from powdered compounds, and a smaller but still significant amount from used batteries.“Rechargeable battery waste, particularly from lithium-ion batteries, will become an increasingly menacing environmental challenge in the future as the demand for these through their usage in electric vehicles and other gadgets increases dramatically,” Ajayan said.“It’s important to recover strategic metals like cobalt that are limited in supply and are critical for the performance of these energy-storage devices,” he said. “Something to learn from our present situation with plastics is that it is the right time to have a comprehensive strategy for recycling the growing volume of battery waste.”The results appear in Nature Energy. https://youtu.be/76VdelMJ280Video produced by Brandon Martin/Rice UniversityImages for download: https://news-network.rice.edu/news/files/2019/03/0325_RECYCLING-1-web-1r7wsfm.jpgRice University graduate student Kimmai Tran and her colleagues have developed an environmentally friendly solution to remove valuable cobalt and lithium metals from spent lithium-ion batteries. (Photo by Jeff Fitlow/Rice University) A solution turns green as it pulls cobalt from a spent lithium-ion cathode. A Rice University laboratory is developing an environmentally friendly method to recover valuable metals from used batteries. (Photo by Jeff Fitlow/Rice University) https://news-network.rice.edu/news/files/2019/03/0325_RECYCLING-4-web-2ard3y3.jpgThe blue-green color of solutions reveals the presence of cobalt taken from spent lithium-ion batteries through a new process developed at Rice University. (Photo by Jeff Fitlow/Rice University) Return to article. Long Description