Instagram may soon start charging you in radical shake-up to this popular app

Instagram continues to be one of the biggest apps on the planet and part of its huge appeal is that it’s totally free to use. However, that might be about to change with the Facebook-owned firm thought to be considering a radical shake-up to its service.

According to a new patent application, which was spotted by Mike Murphy and the team at Protocol, Instagram could be about to set a fee for anyone who wants to add a link to a website into their photo caption.

Right now, users can’t add any kind of external links when posting a message on the platform which is one of its most annoying traits.

But that could be about to change as long as you are prepared to pay a price. The patent appears to show a pop-up window which will appear when adding a URL to any posts you may happen to be adding.

As soon as a link is spotted by Instagram a message appears which reads, “Would you like to activate the link in your caption for $2?”

It’s certainly a good thing that the social network is considering allowing users to add external links but whether or not people will be willing to pay this fee remains to be seen. It might be, however, a small price to pay for wannabe influencers trying to push traffic to external websites.

READ MORE: Your Facebook will change forever in a matter of days

Of course, this is simply a patent right now and there’s nothing to suggest Instagram is about to start charging its users anytime soon.

This payment option isn’t the only update that could be coming to Instagram.

Last year Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg confirmed plans to integrate WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Instagram Direct into a single messaging platform. This would allow for cross-messaging between these apps as well as support for end-to-end encryption between these communications.

While these plans seemed like a distant dream when they were first reported in 2019, it looks like things are stepping up a gear in 2020. According to a recent article by The Verge, Facebook has already tentatively started this integration process last week – between Instagram and Messenger at least.

Speaking about the changes a Facebook spokesperson said: “We want to build the best messaging experiences we can; and people want messaging to be fast, simple, reliable and private. We’re working on making more of our messaging products end-to-end encrypted and considering ways to make it easier to reach friends and family across networks. As you would expect, there is a lot of discussion and debate as we begin the long process of figuring out all the details of how this will work.”



Prince Charles could make radical break from tradition when he becomes King

Prince Charles, 71, is the oldest heir apparent in British history and is due to take over from Queen Elizabeth II, 94, when she can no longer serve. Charles will automatically become king upon the Queen’s death but his coronation won’t take place straight away.

The coronation is the ceremony by which the new Sovereign is officially sworn in as King or Queen.

A description of the coronation on the Royal Family’s official website reads: “The coronation ceremony, an occasion for pageantry and celebration, but it is also a solemn religious ceremony, has remained essentially the same over a thousand years.

“For the last 900 years, the ceremony has taken place at Westminster Abbey, London.

“The service is conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury, whose task this has almost always been since the Norman Conquest in 1066.”

READ MORE: Prince Charles could block Prince William from inheriting title

In answer to the question ‘Could we have a multi-faith coronation?’, University College London’s Constitution Unit states: “The coronation will continue to be an Anglican service, but finding a place for other Christian denominations and other religions: as happened at the recent royal wedding, and as practised for some years at the Abbey’s Commonwealth Day services.

“Such people may be invited to give readings; and religious leaders other than Anglicans are likely to be seated prominently, as happened at the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee service at St Paul’s in 2012.”

There are three ancient oaths which the new sovereign must swear at accession and coronation: to be a true and faithful Protestant, to uphold the Presbyterian Church of Scotland and the rights and privileges of the Church of England.

Prince Charles’s views on these oaths are not known but there may be room for updates.

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The Constitution Unit website states: “Historically, coronations have included homage where the senior members of each order of the peerage have knelt to the new monarch and paid homage for their order.

“Homage is not part of the religious rite but a survival from the feudal age and a residue of the old aristocratic constitution.

“In 1953 this tradition led to peers and their wives being still the largest single group attending the coronation.

“Few hereditary peers are nowadays members of the legislature and it seems right to try to think again about how the idea can be made to reflect the modern constitution.

“For some time suggestions have been made to take homage out of the coronation and relocate it in a different form elsewhere.”

According to the experts, this change could bring the coronation up to date with the modernised monarchy Prince Charles might like to have.

They add: “Essentially, the idea is to institute a non-religious event where representatives of civil society including every ethnic group meet with the new sovereign in a ceremony of mutual recognition and respect, possibly under Parliamentary auspices in, say, Westminster Hall.

“Making the change would not be without difficulty but it could reinforce right at the beginning of the new reign that the monarch relates equally to the whole community regardless of status, aristocratic or otherwise. “

“The germ of this idea can be seen in the suggestion for the 1953 coronation by Opposition Parties in a rejected proposal that the Speaker should give homage on behalf of the common man.”



Galaxy Z Fold 2 UK release: everything you need to know about this radical phone revealed

There’s no doubt the first Galaxy Fold was one of the most radical smartphones Samsung ever released. The bendable blower can instantaneously transform from a smartphone into a small tablet using its clever flexible screen.

But while it was certainly impressive, but definitely not faultless.

The handset, which was unveiled in 2019, was criticised for its cramped display on the front case, a less than robust design that broke during its initial release and an ugly camera notch for the dual-cameras that cut into the main screen.

Now the Galaxy Fold series is back and it seems Samsung has fixed many of the complaints found on the original. Perhaps the biggest change is the inclusion of a 6.2-inch HD+ Super AMOLED screen on the front of the device that fills the entire front panel. That means users will get the full smartphone experience without having to open it up the aluminium shell.

This should make a huge difference to the usability of the Fold 2 especially as you can launch an app on this front display and then continue where you left off when you have the time (or space) to unfold the device and use the tablet-like display hiding in its centre.

The next big upgrade comes to the camera system with a triple snapper on the rear and two extra cameras added, which enables selfies to be snapped whether the device is open or closed. These have both been punched through the display making them far more subtle than before.

Other photography features include the new Pro video, Night and Single Shot modes along with something called Flex Mode. This uses the strength in the hinge to allow the device to half-open so you can stand it up and snap selfies without holding the phone in your hand.

If you think you’ll spend most of the day using the Galaxy Z Fold 2’s main tablet-style screen then there’s more good news as Samsung has slimmed down the bezels by 27 percent meaning you now get a 7.6-inch screen – that’s up from 7.3-inches on its predecessor.

Like this year’s S20 and Note 20, this new display also gets 120Hz technology which makes scrolling through content feel silky smooth and stutter-free.

This can also be switched to the adaptive mode which changes the refresh rate depending on what you doing on the screen. This should help save a little battery life as 120Hz is notorious for munching through power.

To help boost the viewing experience further, Samsung has now packed high-dynamic dual speakers inside the device which the firm says offers great audio without the need for any accessories.

Finally, Samsung has improved the usability of the big screen via a multi-active window which allows you to display numerous apps at the same time.

Users can even split the display horizontally or vertically allowing improve customisation. When using this mode Fold 2 owners can drag and drop images into emails and programmes, like Microsoft Powerpoint.

Other things worth a mention include 12GB of RAM (more than most laptops!), a fast 64-bit processor, side-mounted fingerprint scanner, and 4,500mAh dual battery which can be fast-charged. It will be available in Mystic Bronze and Mystic Black with pricing expected to be revealed in the next few hours.



BBC radical overhaul planned under new Chair – but Boris's pick for job set to be REMAINER

Baroness Morgan, who held her former Cabinet role until February this year, is understood to be one of two candidates to have been formally approached for the role to succeed Sir David Clementi, who is standing down in February. The Government has refuted claims an announcement was due to made within the next two weeks, and this has now been pushed back so the job can be sufficiently advertised. Current Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden returns to Westminster on Monday following a holiday in the UK, with the appointment of a new BBC chair said to be “top of his in-tray”.

Government sources expect an announcement in October, which could also coincide with the annual Conservative Party conference, which will take place through virtual means due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Insiders said Lady Morgan is one of two candidates being seriously considered for the role, with the other said to come from the technology sector, who could appeal to the Government if they set about finding alternative models to the under-fire TV licence fee.

A source told the Daily Telegraph: “Number 10 has to decide if they want someone who will bash a few heads together, or somebody who is going to nudge things along but not necessarily do it confrontationally.

“Number 10 is obsessed with the tech people so it could be someone with a tech digital background, somebody who comes in from outside, a different sector, different background.”

The appointment of the new chair of the BBC is being pushed back as the Royal Charter states it can only be made “following a fair and open competition”.

First, there must be a consultation between the Secretary of State and the BBC on the process, including on job specification.

But despite the emergence of Lady Morgan as an early front-runner, the top job has still not been advertised, with the BBC understood to have not been provided with a timeline.

The candidate search has to be conducted in line with the Governance Code on Public Appointments.

READ MORE: Eamonn Holmes steps in as This Morning guest slams BBC licence fee

Former Home Secretary Amber Rudd, who was also a prominent Remainer, had been in the running the running for the Director General’s job and is expected to apply for the chair role.

But one source claimed while Lady Morgan was an early supporter of Boris Johnson for the Tory leadership, she voted Remain in the 2016 EU referendum and could be a stumbling block to her becoming the new chair.

The source said: “Love him or loathe him, we know what Boris feels about the BBC.

“It is the same as what he feels about the EU.

“He is going to find a male Brexit mate for the job.”

Another insider warned a soft Tory candidate such as Lady Morgan or Ms Rudd “would go native within a month” and become a “status quo chairman”.

Several Brexiteers could also be in the running to be the new BBC chair.

These include Sir Robbie Gibb, a former BBC executive and an ex-director of communications at 10 Downing Street and Dan Hannan, the former Conservative MEP, who missed out on a peerage last month.

Outside of Downing Street, veteran BBC presenter Andrew Neil, who had his political programme axed last month as part of a huge organisational restructure at the corporation, has also been mooted for the role.



Car insurance policies set for radical changes as firm launches new ‘fuss free’ service

“Flow gives drivers a simplified insurance experience, with a quick journey, competitive pricing and the flexibility to change their policy as and when they want to, at a click of a button.

“There’s no admin fees, no instalment charges and you don’t need an existing no claims discount to get the best price.

“Whatever drivers want to do – change the mileage, change the driver or even change the car – Flow means it can be done quickly and easily.”

Standard cover includes comprehensive insurance, uninsured drivers and misfuelling cover to ensure motorists are fully protected against any problems.



Nigel Farage's radical calls for NEW electoral system exposed: 'Affront to democracy!'

In June, Mr Farage confirmed he is preparing to relaunch the Brexit Party, as he is concerned Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the Conservative Party are losing control of the country and could go soft on Brexit. The party, which a year ago swept to victory in the European Parliament elections and sealed Theresa May’s fate as Prime Minister, is likely to be renamed the Reform Party amid growing demands for a centre right alternative to the Tories. The Sunday Express learnt that plans for a relaunch of the Brexit Party have been in the pipeline for months and donations are pouring in for it to relaunch as a political force.

Mr Farage told the Sunday Express: “[I am] watching and waiting.

“The lack of leadership from our government has been pitiful.

“Millions of Conservative voters want to see some moral courage not the current cowardice in the face of anarchic marxism.”

Mr Farage did not discuss in detail what his party will focus on, but unearthed reports shed light on a battle he might be interested in fighting.

According to a throwback report by the Daily Express, in 2015, Mr Farage led calls for radical changes to the electoral system after nearly four million people voted for Ukip at the 2015 general election but saw only one MP elected.

The former party leader said the first past the post system was now “bust” and insisted there was a growing demand for it to be scrapped.

Under proportional representation Ukip could have won 83 seats, it emerged.

Mr Farage said: “I do think the system is bust and I do think there’ll be great demand for it to change.

“One party can get 50 percent of the vote in Scotland and nearly 100 percent of the seats, and our party can get four million votes and just one seat.

“For those reasons there are a lot of angry Ukip people out there.

“They’re not giving up on Ukip, but absolutely determined that we get a fairer, more reflective system.”

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He added: “But there’s something deeper about this first past the post system.

“What it’s led to is a General Election in which, because the system that was designed to produce majority government couldn’t do it, there was a totally negative campaign.

“Everybody says ‘Don’t vote for these guys, they’re slightly worse than us’.”

Despite the surge in the Ukip vote nationally, the only MP returned to the Commons was Douglas Carswell in Clacton, Essex.

In contrast the SNP, which got less than half Ukip’s vote with 1.5million, ended up with 56 MPs out of a total of 59 in Scotland.

Former deputy Ukip leader Paul Nuttall said the current system was an “affront to democracy”.

He said: “The first past the post system was designed for the 19th century and has no place in a 21st century functioning democracy.

“The fact a political party can poll nearly four million votes and have one seat is an affront to democracy.

Electoral reform has to be put back to the front of the agenda.”

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Mr Carswell also said the skewed system was outdated.

He said: “Here, in our part of Essex, people voted Ukip and they got Ukip yet across the country about five million people will have either voted for Ukip or for the Green Party.

“That failure to translate those five million votes into seats is less a reflection of how my party or the Green Party campaigned. Rather it tells us how dysfunctional our political system is.”

When Mr Farage launched his general election campaign in November, he had announced that on top of Britain’s relationship with the EU, the Brexit Party party would have also pushed for voting reform, the abolition of the House of Lords in favour of an elected second chamber, and the creation of a written constitution.

The Brexit Party, though, did not win any seats at the polls.

Since its creation, many Prime Ministers have attempted to reform the upper chamber and failed.

Boris Johnson is said to be looking at plans to turn it into an elected US-style senate.

However, nobody in Government seems to be concerned with changing the current voting system – First-Past-The-Post (FPTP) – which Mr Farage believes to be “totally bankrupt”.

In the past, the Brexit Party leader has made the case for proportional representation (PR), in which the number of parliamentary seats allocated to a political party reflects that party’s share of the popular vote.

In 2011, the UK voted overwhelmingly to reject changing the way MPs are elected in a referendum – dealing a bitter blow to former Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg, who campaigned in favour of an Alternative Vote(AV) system.



German slaughterhouse overhaul: Radical reform or return to status quo?

After years of fruitless attempts to clean up the German meat industry, politicians have come together behind a set of reforms that experts say could mark a paradigm shift for the sector. At the heart of the proposal presented by Labor Minister Hubertus Heil is a ban on the use of subcontractors that have been blamed for fostering unsafe and exploitative conditions throughout slaughterhouses.

For decades, German meat processors have cut costs by employing thousands of workers from low-wage countries such as Romania, Bulgaria and Poland. Instead of hiring the workers directly, the companies often rely on opaque, multilayered networks of subcontracted firms; a practice critics say has long allowed them to skirt responsibility for workplace conditions. 

Referred to as a form of “mordern slavery” these conditions helped Germany’s slaughterhouses become coronavirus hotspots. 

Police patrolling a housing compound of Tönnies meat workers after they were quarantined amid an outbreak of COVID-19

At the Tönnies slaughterhouse in northwest Germany, more than 1,500 workers contracted COVID-19 in June and had to be quarantined. The outbreak also led to the reimposition of a lockdown on two nearby districts

Looking for loopholes

Minister Heil’s proposal, expected to be released in full by the end of July, would ban the use of such types of work contracts, known as Werkverträge, and require slaughterhouses to employ core workers directly.

Gerhard Bosch, a professor at the Institute for Work, Skills and Training at the University of Duisburg-Essen, described the proposal as a “paradigm shift” for the meat industry. But he fears it won’t put an end to exploitation of migrant workers.

Meat companies already appear to be looking for — and finding — loopholes in the rules. Tönnies has vowed to employ 1,000 workers directly by September. But the company is facing backlash after creating 15 subsidiary companies to employ those workers.

Bosch said the subsidiaries could be used to divide workers and stamp out attempts at collective bargaining. Workers could be divided by nationality or job, he said, allowing for disparities in between the subsidiaries. 

“What Tönnies is clearly trying to avoid is any unionization,” he said. “It will be the same unchanged work organization, on the assembly line there will be different companies.”

Migrant slaughterhouse workers at a meat factory are cutting meat

Migrant workers are faced with long hours and low pay, made even lower by deductions for cramped housing, work equipment and transportation.

Same conditions, different industry 

The practice of using subcontracted migrant workers to cut labor costs isn’t confined to meat slaughtering. It’s widespread in construction, parcel delivery, and even on German strawberry farms. 

Germany is one of the largest destinations for other EU workers. In 2018, Germany received around 430,000 so-called posted workers who come to the country for temporary work, according to a study commissioned by the European Commission

The construction industry is where many of those workers end up. Last year, around 100,000 posted workers, mostly from Poland and other Eastern European countries, were employed in construction.

Like in the meat industry, German construction companies often use complicated webs of subcontractors to evade labor laws. Workers complain of long days, missing pay, and high deductions for housing, tools and work clothes that bring their pay below the legal minimum. 

Postal work, too, has been rife with exploitation of migrant workers. In February 2019, 3,000 customs officers raided subcontractors used by German parcel services such as DHL and Hermes. They discovered a multitude of violations. Some delivery drivers didn’t have licenses, and about a third of subcontracted employees were being paid less than minimum wage. 

German Parliament responded with a law that makes parcel companies liable if their subcontractors fail to pay social contributions or minimum wage to workers. Similar laws already cover the construction and meat industries, but have failed to put an end to exploitative conditions. 

Bringing down the housing scam 

Bosch blames a lack of government oversight and weak union representation for migrant workers for the continued flouting of German labor laws. 

Many migrant workers don’t speak German, have little understanding of their rights, and are afraid to raise concerns about conditions for fear of losing their job or housing. 

 “At the margin, these are foreigners who do not know their rights,” he said. Bosch believes stricter restrictions on the use of subcontractors in other Industries would help. 

But many politicians, including Katja Mast, vice chair of the Social Democrat’s parliamentary group, argue a broader ban isn’t feasible.

“We do not fight against working contracts in general, but we fight against the abuse of working contracts in order to create a second class of workers,” she said. 

Mast instead favors strengthening rules around housing setups that are often arranged for migrant workers by employers.

Ruxandra Empen, a specialist in labor market policy for the German Trade Union Confederation (DGB), said workers are often overcharged for housing and face the constant fear of expulsion from the apartments if they lose their jobs.

“Workers are inclined to accept housing offers but there are many disadvantages,” she said. “A lot of the housing is substandard, the rent prices are pretty high. It’s a way to circumvent minimum wages.”

DGB’s proposal: cap the cost of employer-provided housing and task government authorities with enforcing those conditions.



Columnist Mindy Hammond gives her doodle puppy a radical haircut

Ojo loves his new haircut

Ojo loves his new haircut (Image: Susan Hellard)

Many people have been forced to cancel celebrations this year. Weddings have been postponed and landmark anniversary and birthday parties simply haven’t happened (including my twin sisters’ 50th). We all agree to reschedule when we can and keep everything crossed for that momentous day to arrive – and hope it isn’t five years hence, by which time enthusiasm will be about as buoyant as a deflated balloon.

Meanwhile, we did manage a mini birthday bash chez Hammond for Ojo, our “ultimate doodle” puppy. There were no party hats or streamers and nobody dressed up or made a doggy cake, but I was relieved the milestone had been reached because, on the vet’s advice and to avoid any chance of malformed hips or future back problems, Ojo has been lead-walked since his arrival.

Ojo is one year old

Ojo is one year old (Image: Susan Hellard)

OK, so after my arms had been stretched by an inch or two, we upgraded to an industrial-strength flexi lead. But even that struggled to hold a boisterous 30kg pup desperate to play with his pals.

There were advantages. Blea and Sparrow could chase each other for hours around the fields without their lunatic younger brother charging in, Dimple Chicken had a lead-walked companion and I learnt all kinds of contortionist-type moves to avoid lead entanglement.

As the birthday date crept closer, Ojo’s training was intensified until he was bored rigid with recall and wondering why he was having so many incredibly dull solo excursions.

He must have thought I was losing my marbles because no sooner did he wander 10 feet away than he was called back and rewarded with a tasty treat. 

It made me wonder, do our dogs think we reward them for leaving us or for coming back? And where do they think this never-ending supply of food comes from? They bury bones for storage, so maybe they think our pockets serve as magical storage vessels for bottomless bounty?

While lead restraints were being revised for Ojo, our terror of a terrier, Dimple Chicken, was still under close scrutiny. She may be the most adoring lapdog indoors but her hunting instincts have always kicked in outdoors.She’d ignore us, go where she pleased and, after several nail-biting moments when she almost disappeared forever down a badger sett, had been declared leashed for life.

Then lockdown rules eased a little and we were allowed to go for walks in the wide open spaces. So Izzy took Chicken with her for a walk around a nearby hill and although she was lead-walked the whole way, the little terrier seemed glued to Izzy’s side. Feeling confident, when she reached the first of our fields Izzy unclipped the lead and, to her delight, Chicken stayed beside her, not even glancing in the direction of the big rabbit warren and more concerned than curious over the strange rustling in the undergrowth.

The following day Izzy walked her again, armed with treats, and to keep her focussed Chicken was denied breakfast that morning.  It worked like a dream and she was such a good girl she was treated to a walk on the Malvern Hills with Willow the following week.

Ojo’s fur coat had been a mud magnet

Ojo’s fur coat had been a mud magnet (Image: Susan Hellard)

Ojo had started coming to the yard in the mornings with Sparrow. For the first couple of months he was on a long lead tied to the post supporting the overhang on the stables, but on the morning of his birthday his lead was unclipped and he spent 20 minutes jumping in muddy puddles, chewing hay nets and badgering Sparrow to play.

His shaggy coat was a mess and no amount of washing or grooming was going to fix it, so for his launch into adulthood Ojo had a haircut. He is half the dog he was and although it took a few days to get used to his new look (Blea didn’t even recognise him for five minutes), he is a much cooler and happier pooch. He has far more energy and instead of a big cuddly cushion now has the appearance of an elegant, if goofy-faced, dog version of an alpaca.

Keeping up with a puppy can be exhausting

Keeping up with a puppy can be exhausting (Image: Susan Hellard)

All the dogs can now enjoy their freedom. Ojo runs like a greyhound, which is the best of games for Blea and gives Sparrow a quieter life, while Chicken happily trots along, although she regularly plants her bottom until given a treat.

Ojo has loved his birthday surprises so far, but there’s one he’s not likely to enjoy…The big op is imminent and nobody is volunteering to tell him. 



Trump challenged by radical presidential candidate hoping to REVERSE ageing

The revolutionary argument is being made by Charlie Kam, the official candidate of the US Transhumanist Party. Transhumanism is a scientific and political movement whose advocates believe we can and should use emerging technology, such as artificial intelligence and gene editing, to radically enhance natural human capabilities.

The movement, particularly associated with Silicone Valley tech entrepreneurs, has been growing rapidly around the world.

Gennady Stolyarov II, chair of the US Transhumanist Party, is open the party has no expectation of winning in November.

Instead, speaking to Express.co.uk, he said the focus was on raising awareness of the movement claiming: “What I’ve found out with regard to transhumanism is that the barrier really isn’t hostility on the part of the general public, the greatest barrier is unawareness.

“So how does one spread awareness? One seeks to reach new demographics and one seeks to reach them using creative means.

Transhumanism

Charlie Kam is the US Transhumanist Party candidate for the 2020 presidential election (Image: GETTY/YOUTUBE_PERPETUAL LIFE)

Transhumanism

Zoltan Istvan ran for the US Transhumanist Party during the 2016 presidential election (Image: Zoltan Istvan)

“So from my standpoint the presidential nominee of the US transhumanist party is primarily a spokesperson for the ideas of transhumanism, of radical life extension, of emerging technologies, who are poised to transform the human condition in the next several decades.”

The US Transhumanist Party ran for the first time at the 2016 presidential election when it was represented by Zoltan Istvan.

To attract attention Mr Istvan drove a bus decorated like a giant coffin, nicknamed the ‘immortality bus’, from one coast of America to the other.

The journey, followed in the ‘Immortality or Bust’ documentary recently released on Amazon Prime, focused on the transhumanist view that humans should work with technology to abolish natural death.

READ MORE: Humanity’s power now ‘far surpasses’ its wisdom warns writer 

Transhumanism

Zoltan Istvan campaigning for the US Transhumanist Party ahead of the 2016 presidential election (Image: Zoltan Istvan )

Speaking to Express.co.uk about his platform Mr Kam commented: “For me the main thing is life extension, that’s the key to the whole movement.

“It’s about being able to extend healthy lives for people and make it as ubiquitous as possible so that it’s available for everyone.

“I would love to see ageing listed as a disease.

“Ageing really is at the base of every age-related disease so if ageing itself can be declared a disease then it’s going to be a lot simpler to get the [US] National Institute of Health to secure funding for it.”

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Transhumanism

Many transhumanists believe we should merge human and artificial intelligence (Image: GETTY)

Transhumanism

Robotics is a keen area of interest for the transhumanist movement (Image: GETTY)

November’s presidential election will primarily be contested between Republican incumbent Donald Trump and Democrat challenger Joe Biden.

In Britain transhumanism is represented politically by the Transhumanist Party UK.

Mr Stolyarov claimed one of the current priorities of the transhumanist movement is to raise awareness about their ideas.

He explained: “Right now there are many mainstream politicians who would identify themselves as environmentalists even though they belong to a major political party, so hopefully within a decade or two we will have mainstream politicians identifying themselves as transhumanists.

They’ll say of course I’m a transhumanist – I happen to be a Republican transhumanist or a Democratic transhumanist or a Tory transhumanist or a Labour transhumanist.

“That would be the kind of world that we seek to reach.”

Transhumanists believe upcoming technological developments will enable both human biology and society to be altered so people can like much longer and more satisfying lives.

Many transhumanists believe much of the world’s current political elite don’t appreciate how radically technology could transform human society within the coming decades.

Transhumanism

A robot helps fight coronavirus in India (Image: GETTY)

Summarising the movements longer term goals Mr Kam stated: “We want to live biologically healthy and longer as much as we can.

“That’s my immediate goal – to try and live as long as possible healthy in this body but with the idea we’re going to merge with technology, and not just to have a cyborg and robotic body but also our minds,  I want to be able to have my brain be able to access all the information I do right now with a cell phone.

“What I’m looking forward to is a time when we’re all super smart, when we can think thousands of times faster, because that is going to come eventually.”



Boris Johnson’s £5BILLION promise: PM puts forward radical ‘new deal’ for COVID recovery

And he will urge the country to pull together to “build, build, build” its way out of the economic downturn caused by weeks of lockdown. “If we deliver this plan together, then we will together build our way back to health. We will not just bounce back, we will bounce forward – stronger and better and more united than ever before,” the Prime Minister is expected to say. Mr Johnson will travel to Dudley, in the West Midlands, to make his keynote speech on the UK’s future, deep in the so-called “Blue Wall” territory captured from Labour at last year’s general election.

His address will evoke the spirit of the “New Deal” policies of President Franklin D Roosevelt that sought to revive the US economy from the 1930s Depression with investment in major public works.

It follows warnings unemployment could soar to more than three million – the highest level since the 1980s – in the wake of the coronavirus shutdown.

Mr Johnson will say: “It sounds positively Rooseveltian. It sounds like a New Deal.

“All I can say is that if so, then that is how it is meant to sound and to be because that is what the times demand – Government that is powerful and determined and that puts its arms around people at a time of crisis.

The contruction industry

The contruction industry will be at the vanguard of the new deal (Image: Getty)

“This is a Government that is wholly committed not just to defeating coronavirus but to using this crisis finally to tackle this country’s great unresolved challenges of the last three decades.

“To that end we will build, build, build – build back better, build back greener, build back faster and to do that at the pace that this moment requires.”

Mr Johnson will say the Government is rushing forward capital investment projects to support jobs and stimulate recovery in the NHS, roads, schools, town centres and criminal justice.

The key projects include: £1.5billion this year for hospital maintenance, new hospital buildings, improving NHS services and eradicating outdated “dormitory” accommodation for mental health patients.

  • £100million for 29 road projects including bridge repairs in Sandwell, West Midlands, upgrading the A15 in the Humber area and £10million to begin freeing the Manchester rail bottleneck.
  • £1billion for the first 50 projects in a 10-year school rebuilding programme. Details will be set out in a Treasury spending review in the autumn with work starting in September 2021. An extra £560million and £200million will repair and upgrade to schools and further education colleges.
  • £142million to fund digital upgrades and maintenance on around 100 courts this year, £83million for prisons and youth offender centres and £60million for temporary prison places.
  • £900million for “shovel ready” growth projects in England this year and 2021, plus £96million to speed investment in town centres and high streets through the “Towns Fund” this year.

Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson (Image: Getty)

Mr Johnson’s New Deal will focus on previously neglected regions and communities far beyond London.

He will say: “Too many parts of this country have felt left behind, neglected, unloved, as though someone had taken a strategic decision that their fate did not matter as much as the metropolis.

“I want you to know that this Government not only has a vision to change this country for the better, we have a mission to unite and level up – the mission on which we were elected last year.”

Mr Johnson will commit to a National Infrastructure Strategy this autumn, with further ambitions for energy networks, road and rail links, flood defences and waste facilities.

Ministers will step up infrastructure projects in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and Mr Johnson will order a review on how to improve road, rail, air and sea links throughout the UK.

He will emphasise his commitment to making Britain “greener”, with plans to reforest areas by planting more than 75,000 acres of trees every year by 2025.

And the Prime Minister will pledge £40million to boost conservation projects and create 3,000 environmental jobs including “conservation rangers”.

He told Times Radio yesterday that he was optimistic about Britain bouncing back from the coronavirus crisis but warned the country was facing a huge challenge.

He said: “We’ve had eight million people furloughed…we have seen a big fall in our GDP [Gross Domestic Product] and everybody understands that as we come out of it there’s going to be some bumpy times.

“But the UK is an amazingly dynamic, resilient economy. And we are going to come through very, very well indeed. But we’ll have to work at it.”

Mr Johnson insisted he did not want to return to austerity measures used to recover from the 2008 financial crisis. He said: “Obviously you have to be careful. But in the end, what you can’t do at this moment is go back to what people called austerity…I think that would be a mistake.

“This is a moment now to give our country the skills, the infrastructure, the long term investment that we need.”

Mr Johnson’s speech comes as Chancellor Rishi Sunak is to unveil measures to support jobs.

Shadow chancellor Anneliese Dodds said: “We urgently need the Conservatives to abandon their ‘one size fits all’ approach to the economic support schemes, which will inevitably lead to additional unemployment.”