CategoryUrgent Money Credits

Aerospace Engineering

Ground segment

Whether it is the management of a launcher or a satellite payload, Harry Angstrom offers the best solution for optimal control of space resources, from validation to critical operations, and therefore, from the specification to the design and operations,

  • Design and development of operational command and control centers
  • Data centers and applications for the exploitation of Earth observation data.
  • Monitoring stations for telemetry control and flight safety.
  • Management of facilities, maintenance and operation of space centers.

Board segment

  • Development of on-board software for satellites and launchers.
  • Design and development of avionics systems for launchers.
  • Validation and independent verification of critical software.
  • Software development for satellite platforms and payload instruments.

Beware of withdrawing money from third-party ATMs: the commission to be paid will not be fixed until January 1

Beware of withdrawing money from third-party ATMs: the commission to be paid will not be fixed until January 1

Bank commissions are a permanent battle between entity and client. The first one aims to increase revenues and improve margins, and the second, that the management of your money has no cost. In recent years, it has also become a fundamental pillar for banks that want to attract new clients and retain their loyalty, and in this sense, a voracious competition has been unleashed. There are already many accounts or cards whose administration is free.

But the fight has gone further in 2015 with the commissions in the ATMs. Caixabank , which has the largest number of ATMs – 21% of the total – unleashed the conflict in March by announcing that it would charge 2 euros to those who used their terminals to withdraw money and were not customers . This cost involved a double commission, since the bank issuing the card also applied the corresponding withholding.

The new regulatory framework does not set a maximum or minimum for tariffs . From that moment on, there was a chain reaction in the sector. BBVA and Santander said they would do the same , other entities agreed on alliances so as not to harm the client and so on until the government decided to take action on the matter just a few weeks ago, through the approval of a royal decree law.

The Executive prohibits the double commission when recognizing that it supposes “an increase of the commissions supported by the banking clients by this concept that in some case was superior to 100%”. In addition, it considers of vital importance and of urgent necessity to recover the confidence of the consumers within a process of recovery in which the Spanish economy is immersed.

After the government’s resolution, the scenario changes for everyone. The crux of the matter is that the commission does not disappear as such. “With this new regulation, the entity that owns the ATM will not be able to demand any cost from the user of the service or pass it on to them, but it will be able to demand it from the issuer of the card.” Entities will be able to reach agreements to fix the amount. , the owners of the ATMs will determine in a non-discriminatory way between entities what they will charge by default to the issuing entities of the cards “.

The financial sector argues that it requires large investments in technological infrastructure for its terminals and that one way to make them profitable is to charge non-customers for their use. This is what the law says, which, in a simpler way, assumes that a person that uses a different ATM to those that have the entity that delivered the credit or debit card must pay a single rate and that the amount will depend on the agreement that is established between entities -the owner of the terminal and the client- and the decisions that are also made individually.

The financial sector argues that it requires large investments in technological infrastructure for its terminals and that one way to make them profitable is to charge non-customers for their use. Therefore, ATM owners will continue to put a price on the use of their services, but will require it to the entity that issued the card, and it will decide whether to transfer the total or partial cost to the user.

Resolution in January

At this moment a period is open for consultations, studies and analysis of possible alliances between banks and ATM networks that must be completed before January 1, 2016, the date on which the new commission model will begin to be applied, once again the computer systems are modified.

For the Government it is a structure that will be more advantageous for the client by increasing competitiveness in the sector. The problem is that the new regulatory framework does not set a maximum or minimum for tariffs. At the moment, some reactions have already taken place. Caixabank immediately eliminated – after knowing the decree law – the direct payment of the 2 euros to non-customers that had been applied since last March. For its part, BBVA and Santander withdrew their intention to follow in the footsteps of the Catalan entity.

It remains to see what happens finally with the alliance established by Bankia, Sabadell and some entities integrated in the Euro 6000 network, among which are Unicaja, Liberbank or Kutxabank, not to pass on any surcharge to users; they even weighed the possibility of lowering current rates.

On the other hand, Bankinter and Popular also studied joining the Euro 6000 alliance and now it is not ruled out that other parallel actions with the big entities may arise. Meanwhile , ING , which does not have ATMs and its main claim is the absence of commissions on all its products, has expressed its concern to Brussels . For the moment, it has reached an agreement with Popular to use its machines without surcharge.

Caixabank unleashed the conflict in March by announcing that it would charge 2 euros to those who use its terminals to withdraw money and were not EVO customers , in a similar situation to ING, has agreed, however, to return “in full” what the terminals charge of other entities in national territory if 120 euros or more are withdrawn with your debit card. Banco Mediolanum also grants 52 withdrawals in cash with their cards totally free.

The linking of the client will be key in this process. Those who have more products contracted, more advantages will obtain. Sabadell, for example, will not apply any fees to customers of the Expansion Account who withdraw money at the ATMs that make up the national network. The condition is that the amount is greater than 60 euros. This account requires a minimum monthly income of 700 euros. Young people between 18 and 25 years can also enjoy this advantage, in addition to others offered by the account, without any condition.

Therefore, we must pay close attention to the resolution adopted by each of the entities. It is convenient to know the agreements that are reached and the details of the rates that will be applied in order to avoid problems.

Adicae, the Association of Users of Banks and Savings Banks, has celebrated the Government’s decision to eliminate double commission, a fact that has been described as “consumer success”. The agency warns, on the other hand, of the risk that exists of a possible generalized increase in rates, an aspect that will closely monitor. “The association will remain alert, with thousands of consumers who will collaborate in the surveillance work, to prevent the new standard from deriving as of January 2016 in unacceptable increases in the cost that users finally bear ,” he said in a statement. press.

The banks must report annually to the Bank of Spain on the commissions. Adicae estimates that if the double commission had been maintained, the banks would have received 180 million euros for this practice. Now, among its objectives is the claim that Caixabank return the more than 16 million euros that in his opinion charged directly to those who used their ATMs without being customers since last March and until the Government approved the new regulatory framework .

Spain is one of the European countries with the highest activity in banking terminals. According to government data, 74% of the operations carried out are cash withdrawals. At the end of the first half of this year, more than 50,400 machines were counted, representing 1.09 per 1,000 inhabitants, “a figure much higher than that of other countries in our environment,” the executive said in the royal decree. It sets, on the other hand, at almost 18,000 the number of cash withdrawal operations per machine per year. In 2014, a total of 907 million were recorded.

From now on, banks must report annually to the Bank of Spain about the fees they apply in the ATMs. This will generate a joint cost of 32,400 euros, at a rate of 100 euros per entity and year, according to the Government.

Bank gives out porcelain stoneware trays for keeping money in their accounts

Bank gives out porcelain stoneware trays for keeping money in their accounts

Bank has a new promotion to save with their deposits: customers (new or existing) that contribute between 2,700 and 10,000 new euros to the entity and keep them for a few months, will take without draw a set of porcelain stoneware trays of the brand Vista Alegre, resistant and durable, perfect for cooking in the oven.

To obtain 2 rectangular fonts

To obtain the gift, it is necessary to make one of the following contributions:

  • Contribution of € 8,000 for 6 months on account at sight
  • Contribution of € 4,000 for 12 months in a fixed term
  • Contribution of € 2,700 for 18 months in a fixed term
  • Increase of € 6,500 for 6 months

To obtain 1 square font + 1 round + 2 bowls

  • Contribution of € 8,000 for 6 months on account at sight
  • Contribution of € 4,000 for 12 months in a fixed term
  • Contribution of € 2,700 for 18 months in a fixed term
  • Increase € 6,500 for 6 months

To get the 4 sources + 2 bowls

  • Contribution of € 12,400 for 6 months on account in sight
  • Contribution of € 6,200 for 12 months in a fixed term
  • Contribution of € 4,150 for 18 months in a fixed term
  • Increase € 10,000 for 6 months

The balance increases are realizable in the Savings Account, Easy Account, CE Easy Account, Net Account and Youth Account. The profitability of these operations ranges between 0.58% and 0.72% APR, and of course 20% of the value of the gift will be deducted from the account when signing, in concept of IRPF.

Alert of a “;malware” capable of extracting cash from ATMs

Alert of a ‘malware’ capable of extracting cash from ATMs

The cybersecurity company Kaspersky Lab has detected a ‘malware’ specializing in the infection of PCs used for the operation of ATMs. This virus was on sale in the AlphaBay ‘darkweb’ market, along with a complete tutorial with instructions to make it work.

Through a statement, the Russian firm has warned that ATMs are still “very lucrative” for cybercriminals, since the infection of these devices with ‘malware’ facilitates the handling of cash from inside.

Although these malicious tools have been in circulation for a long time, Kaspersky Lab has stated that the creators are investing “amount of resources” in making this ‘malware’ available to other criminals less familiar with computers.

Thus, the cybersecurity company detected at the beginning of this year, through one of its partners, a ‘malware’ hitherto unknown and that presumably had been developed with the intention of infecting the PCs that are used so that the tellers can perform its function.

The analysts of the Russian firm found in AlphaBay, a very popular place of the ‘darkweb’, an advertisement that described a type of ‘malware’ for ATMs and that coincided with the wanted element. This announcement revealed that this virus belonged to a ‘kit’ of commercial ‘malware’ created to obtain the money stored in the ATMs.

A public message from the vendor contained not only the description of the ‘malware’ and instructions on how to get it, “it also offered a detailed guide on how the ‘kit’ should be used to carry out attacks, with instructions and even video tutorials.” .

According to the results of the investigation, it was seen that the set of ‘malware’ was formed by the ‘software’ Cutlet Maker, which serves as the main module responsible for communication with the cash dispenser; the c0decalc program, designed to generate passwords and make Cutlet Maker work, as well as protect it against unauthorized use; and the Stimulator application, which saves time for criminals thanks to the identification of the situation of the cash boxes or containers, as well as the identification of those with the greatest amount of money.

To start stealing, the criminals need to have direct access to the inside of the ATMs and thus be able to connect a USB device with the ‘software’. As a first step, the criminals install Cutlet Maker. As there is a protected password, they use the cOdecalc program, installed on another device.

This key is a kind of copyright protection, installed by the authors of Cutlet Maker to prevent other criminals from using it for free. After the code is generated, the criminals enter it in the Cutlet Maker interface and initiate the extraction of funds.

Cutlet Maker has been in the market since last March 27, although according to Kaspersky Lab, analysts had already begun to follow it in June 2016, when it was identified in a public multiscan service in the Ukraine, but later new cases arrived from other countries.

It is unknown if the ‘malware’ had been previously used, but the instructions included in the ‘kit’ contained videos that were presented by their authors as real proof of their efficiency. It is also not known who is behind this ‘malware’, but the language, grammar and style errors in the ‘kit’ texts suggest that their potential sellers are people whose native language is not English.

Kaspersky Lab security analyst, Konstantin Zykov, explained that Cutlet Maker does not require the criminal to have an advanced or professional computer technical knowledge, which allows the ‘hacking’ of an ATM “to go from being a sophisticated offensive operation to Another illegal way to steal money, and available to virtually everyone who has a few thousand dollars to buy the ‘malware’. “

In that sense, Zykov added that it is “a potentially very dangerous threat to financial institutions”, because while it operates, this program does not find any element of security that prevents it.

To protect ATMs, Kaspersky Lab specialists have recommended security teams of organizations that implement by default a “very strict” denial policy, allow control mechanisms that restrict the ATM connection of any unauthorized device and use a specific security solution.

Philippe Coy: “The tobacconists have to change software”

Philippe Coy, président Confédération nationale buralistes.We have to go back to the commercial offensive. For that we must change our software. I am optimistic because we have the first network of proximity of France, tobacconists who do not count their time and a real affect with the French. In addition, among our 10 million customers per day, 42% are not smokers: they come to buy a phone card, crosswords, the press, confectionery, even open a bank account, with already 860,000 Nickel accounts, one true success story … It would still be amazing that we can not transform the test!


Diversification will go through the electronic cigarette?

In the future, we will have three tobacco liners: the classic products, the electronic cigarette and the heated tobacco. Five years ago, I accidentally discovered vaping. I was amazed to learn that the products were bought in pharmacies, but not at home! The confederation did not want to hear about it. In addition, as the quality of equipment and liquids has dropped, the wave has dropped a little.

But we must invest in this market, even though it has only 2 million consumers today. Because it is the smokers who switch to the e-cigarette. Migrating to this new consumption will allow us to keep our current customers. It is not expensive, but there is volume, and margins above 60% against 8% for tobacco.


Are you ready to reduce tobacco consumption, your core business?

Absolutely. I do not hesitate to say that we have a public health role to play, even if it is shocking to some. I also suggested to the Minister of Health that the tobacconists be partners of the “month without tobacco” operation in November. We can tell the smoking client that there are alternative offers that are less harmful. It would be the “month of the vape”.

Take England as an example of e-cigarettes as a means of weaning or moving away from tobacco. Moreover, we note that vapers self-reduce their addiction: three or four years ago, they smoked liquids containing 12 to 16 mg of nicotine, the equivalent of Camel or Marlboro cigarettes. Now they buy liquids between 3 and 6 mg – comparable to blue Philip Morris.


In February, tobacconists got 100 million euros from Bercy to manage the decline in sales from 2018 to 2021. Why?

We wanted to diversify, but few ways to do it. Gérald Darmanin, the Minister of Action and Public Accounts, promised us help with the transition, but not ad vitam aeternam. The new transformation fund with 80 million euros, or 20 million a year, will target around 2,000 tobacconists. It replaces the aid for the modernization of 10,000 euros per point of sale, which was pointed at the tobacco area.

This will allow us to renovate our businesses and fund a network observatory. Because we do not know where is the diversification of tobacco shops. With this data, we will be able to publish a roadmap for the network by the end of the year. The model is supermarkets, able to help its network of convenience stores and drive change through its global vision. We will propose to the tobacconists concepts, kits to diversify.


Do you think you have relaxed the financial constraint?

Our profession is under strong economic tension. That’s why I signed three framework agreements with our key partners in February, three months after taking office: the 2 with Bercy, the 5 with the French games, the 15 with our main distributor, Logista. The latter has made a move to relieve our cash to the tune of 90 million euros, by extending by one day its withdrawal period and by increasing the proportion of goods stored on credit. It is in Logista’s interest to help us hold, because if the attrition of the network gets worse, the tobacco companies will demand the end of the monopoly of the tobacconists.


What did you get with the French games?

The French games, it is 572 million euros of remuneration for tobacconists. It is also a big workload, a responsibility and explanations to give to the players. I took the initiative to go to the CEO of the French games, Stéphane Pallez, to talk about our remuneration that had not changed for a long time. She listened to us because we make 76% of the turnover of the FDJ.

We signed a contract that brings in an additional € 48 million a year. The tobacconist no longer pays for his gambling furniture, which saves him 1,000 euros a year. On January 1, 2019, the board of the French game, uniform 5.2% today, will be modulated. All prints are revalued. Some addictive scraping will not move, for reasons of public health. On simple sports betting, a segment struggling with the rise of the Internet offer, our remuneration will fall by 1 point. The FDJ has the ambition to conquer 1 million customers. It’s in our mutual interest. It remains to be discussed with the PMU, but it is a more complex file.

full breakfast-aware

One of the shortcomings of the modern worker is eating fast, always faster. A very bad habit denounced by nutritionists … but also by the HRD. The meal is a moment of pause that should allow everyone to relax and recharge the batteries. Let’s discover the meal in full consciousness, guided by a professional, Alexandra Palao, dietician and yoga teacher.

Come with his Mac Do ‘?

As the participants sit around a table, one apologizes, timidly: “I was hungry … and I went to get a Mac Do ‘… It’s serious? “. Silence embarrassed in the room. Alexandra, the dietician-nutritionist who oversees the session, draws a broad smile and comments with excitement: “Of course not! On the contrary, I thank you for that: it gives me the opportunity to explain that we must not deprive ourselves. The purpose of our exercise is to feel, and above all, to have fun! “. Relief. It is 13h. If our fast food lover starts eating to avoid a cold burger, the others will have to wait a bit: “Can we turn off the lights, please? “. Our teacher wants a subdued atmosphere … and above all, without food: “Before starting the experiment, it is essential that everyone takes a moment to meditate”. Accompanied by Michel Onfray’s gourmet reason and a Tibetan bowl, Alexandra invites us in a sweet voice to feel our body, to breathe deeply. Everyone is thus ready to offer themselves a little of their own time.

The opening of the senses

After the meditation, Alexandra asks us to reach out and open our hands, eyes closed. She then deposits a “something” that is unknown to us. It’s up to us to describe what we feel in our palm, then, in a second time, to knead it with the fingers, to identify its texture and its shape. “It’s soft”, “it’s small”, “it’s light”, “it sticks a bit”, “it’s rough” … Everyone gives their opinion on what they perceive.

A few minutes pass and we must now bring it closer to our nostrils to literally “breathe” its smell and put words on what inspires us. “Would it be a little date? “, A goji berry? “,” A raisin? “. It would be, a priori, a berry, or a dry fruit.

Finally, we have permission to put it in contact with our lips, then, in the mouth … without the bite! Again, for several minutes, the fruit sticks to our teeth, caresses our palate. A taste acrobatics during which it is difficult not to chew the fruit. Chew, chew, and finally swallow are other steps to focus on. This is the experience of the meal in full consciousness.

“As if everything had been dissected in the mouth”

This initiation to mindfulness via a cranberry is a success. Welcomed by all participants, the experience seems to have convinced the majority. The food was observed and tasted in an unprecedented way: “I felt a lot more the taste”, “as if everything had been dissected in the mouth,” say the most receptive. Whatever you think, this bay has left no one indifferent.

If for some the situation has proved “absurd”, for others “amazing”, all are delighted to have discovered a new faculty: that of tasting with all of its senses and body. As if a personal relationship had been established with this cranberry? In any case, everyone was able to enjoy their meal in peace, while wondering about the virtues of such a practice in the longer term.

A new software to train poker

Did you know that if you search in Goole for “poker training” there are almost 500,000 results? From online videos to articles, there are all kinds of options. What is missing is variety. Most of the training is in three of the four primary forms of learning, that is, visual, auditory and reading. What is missing is, at least up to now, kinesthetic learning.

Poker Fighter is a poker training software designed by Guy Sela, programmer and developer of the product, and the poker player Stas “Stasia42” Tishkevich, who is the Product Manager. In part simulator and partly game, Poker Fighter uses the latest technology to allow players to play without risk while receiving advice from pros.

“You can play, practice and improve using this unique software that simulates real games,” they say on their website. “The game has been designed to give poker players a better access to both the new and the more experienced players who want to maximize their profits and improve their understanding of the game.”

How does it work

Poker Fighter, which is oriented to play online 0.05 € / 0.10 € and 1 € / 2 € live, is a simulator that takes the user hand by hand to different poker situations. The user has to make a decision and the program will make comments. However, by adding the possibility of winning points, characters and allowing players to choose a rival, Poker Fighter has gamified poker workouts.

“The beginner version teaches optimal play against loose and passive players, who usually pay a lot both before and after the flop,” says Tishkevich. “These types of players tend to limit and rarely do third or fourth bets. After the flop they continue with their passivity, they do not usually raise the projects, they pay more trying to reach the showdown, etc. As a result of this, Poker Fighter teaches a conservative method against the ups and downs and tends to make bets for value with medium hands and semifaro with good projects. This is what the players can learn. “

Keep telling us Tishkevich: “We also have a Pro version that teaches you polarized ranges and take advantage of loose and aggressive players putting pressure with wide ranges. It can be adapted to various types of opponents based on their trends and ranks. “

Origins of Poker Fighter

In 2010, Sela, who was in the Army, had the idea of ​​developing a poker training software. Trying to improve in the game by accessing limited resources, Sela tried to do something new, especially by creating artificial intelligence software that would teach people to play. The idea was simple, develop a software that adapts and offers you information about your decisions.

Meanwhile, Tishkevich was bursting the middle levels thanks to the use of HUD and mathematical rank analysis. In 2013 they met the two and decided to develop Poker Fighter, although at that time the idea was to offer sophisticated software for pros with advanced scenarios and ranges.

Two years later, an alpha version of “Poker Fighter for Pros” came to light, and while they received good reviews of the pros, new and recreational players complained that the scenarios and explanations were very sophisticated. Since the recreationals are the majority of the players, they adapted.

“By simplifying the scenarios and explanations, we created a beta version of Poker Fighter for beginners in early 2016, and received rave reviews from our testers,” says Sela. “We have invested time and money in the aspect of the application and started a local marketing campaign. This month, we hope to increase the campaign to the rest of the world. “

Adventures and misadventures

Developing Poker Fighter has not been easy. One of the biggest challenges has been to take a complex game like poker, analyze every possible situation and translate it into a language that understands a computer.

“We had to program AI algorithms to give the software the skills of a professional poker player, allowing him to make the right decisions according to the strength of the hand, the texture of the table, the most likely hands of the opponent, etc.” says Sela.

While many believe that computers play poker better than humans, Sela and Tishkevich realized that this was not the case and that programs fail to adjust to rivals. In most of them there is only one solution for each hand, which is not always the case. For example, there are different strategies against players who bluff a lot and against players who only bet on value.

Among the decisions that were codified in Poker Fighter are:

  • Relative strength of the preflop and postflop hand based on the actions and positions.
  • Ranks of hands based on actions and positions.
  • Textures of the table and its effect on the ranges and the strategy for Flop, Turn and River.
  • Strategies for common situations: isolation of limpers, pressing with dangerous cards, etc.
  • * Adjustments to different types of opponents (Tight / Loose, Aggressive / Passive)

“Everything that can be expressed in words can be codified,” explains Sela. “Without exceptions. Some concepts are more complicated to program than others, but that is because they are more difficult to explain. Take a video of NL1,000 compared to a NL10 video. The explanations and analysis of the hand and table in NL1,000 are much more complex. The same happens when programming the different levels of thought. It is feasible, but difficult. “

Poker Fighter technology

Unlike other simulators, the hands in Poker Fighter are not predetermined. By not doing so and allowing AI to generate them while you play, Poker Fighter is an infinite game. As there are millions of different scenarios in poker, there is always something you can learn with Poker Fighter.

“We have programmed his brain with enough knowledge of poker to allow him to manage all the scenarios we wanted to teach,” says Sela. “The biggest advantage over other poker software is that it can explain why you recommend doing something. It does not act like a black box that simply says ‘you should have gone up’. Instead, it tells you why you should have done it. “

As they have not programmed it to solve any possible situation, the artificial intelligence of Poker Fighter is not what online players call a bot. For those who do not know, a bot is a computer program that plays without human intervention (like playing chess against the computer).

“The Poker Fighter teaching method divides the game into different scenarios: preflop raises, continuation bets on complicated tables, turn defense on two bet pots, etc.”, continues Sela. “We have optimized the poker brain to handle these scenarios and we have not programmed it for what we do not teach. We have the necessary blocks to convert Poker Fighter into a poker bot if we want. “

Poker Fighter’s “poker brain” is separated from the GTO game to adaptive, which both Sela and Tishkevich say is more profitable against humans.

“The main problem with GTO strategies is that, by definition, it is never an adaptive strategy,” explains Sela. “It never adapts to the opponent’s game. The reason is that if you change your strategy according to what you’ve seen in the opponent, he can adapt and win, changing his strategy before you adapt to him. “

The problem is that poker is a game between people, with which there is a human element. Poker Fighter takes it into account.

“Applying an adaptive strategy against humans, even if it is theoretically exploitable, is the most profitable thing in most poker tables,” continues Sela. “We let game theorists continue to search for their unexploitable strategy in their ivory towers, while we apply ours in the casino.”

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