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Massively expanded EU Code Week 11–17 October 2014

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2014-code_weekEuropean Code Week 2014 began on 11 October and runs until 17 October: more than 1,500 events bringing the digital world to life – across the EU and countries from Norway to Turkey.

The spotlight on coding comes as seven European education ministers have already incorporated compulsory coding into their school curricula, with another five countries offering it as an option in schools.

This is particularly timely, as reports show Europe could soon have one million unfilled jobs because Europeans lack the digital skills to fill them.

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A major new industry-led coding platform is also being launched on 14 October to promote learning and teaching of coding, bringing to life the vision of the Grand Coalition for Digital Skills and Jobs.

And there is a new tool kit for kids, adults, parents, teachers and businesses on how to get involved!

Code Week organiser Alja Isakovic, one of 90 coding ambassadors, said: "It's amazing to see so much enthusiasm for the initiative from every corner of Europe! Coding is a fun and creative tool that provides great career opportunities, even for people who don't want to be full-time programmers. With EU Code Week we want to create a spark, so that more people start making every week of the year a Code Week and become better problem solvers."

European Commission Vice-President Neelie Kroes (@NeelieKroesEU), in charge of Digital Agenda says: "Coding is the new literacy – a fundamental set of skills for girls and boys alike. It’s not a boring computer science lesson, it's a way to make all subjects more interesting. So join an event near you and boost your understanding of the digital world.”

Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou (@VassiliouEU) said: "I'm very pleased that coding is starting to appear on national curricula in the EU. We need to keep up the momentum. And as we said when we launched Opening Up Education last year – we have to make sure the teachers get enough support too."

What sort of events will take place?

Events are available for all kinds of groups: from beginners to advanced coders, for everyone from job-seekers looking to learn a new skill to robot fans and girl geeks.

Schoolchildren will learn coding for the first time, and companies will offer free classes in their communities.

Coding is for girls and boys, inside and outside schools. We need to break the taboos associated with computer science and IT –especially when it comes to getting parents and teachers involved.

Why should children and others learn to code?

Knowing how to code helps us understand our hyper-connected world and to appreciate what is going on behind the screens. Coding is an example of the digital skills that young people need to become creative and empowered citizens, and to prepare them for jobs of the future.

Which countries have coding on the curriculum?

Several member states have already started to put coding on their national curricula:

Mandatory: Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Greece, Poland, Portugal, and the UK.

Optional: Denmark, Estonia, Ireland, Italy, and Lithuania.

Background

EU Code Week is an initiative of the Young Advisers to Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes. The initiative has attracted the support of coding and education movements like CoderDojo and Rails Girls. It is also backed by major tech and IT companies such as Facebook, Microsoft, Rovio, SAP, Oracle and Liberty Global, and is supported by European Schoolnet and the Grand Coalition for Digital Jobs.

More information

Find an event near you
Who in my country to contact for more information - EU Code Week local ambassadors
EU Code Week blog
Opening Up Education initiative

@CodeWeekEU ¦ #CodeEU ¦ Facebook page
Contact your local coding ambassador for interviews and quotes

Find an event near you on the European Event map

Videos

Coding and Digital learning
Coding is fun with Young Advisors

Learn how to code with EU Code Week
Learning to code for your future and for Europe with Vice President Kroes

Bulgaria

Eastern Europe’s most powerful supercomputer will be hosted by Bulgaria. What’s it good for?

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The IT giant Atos said that is has fully delivered to Bulgaria’s Sofia Tech Park a super computer that is expected to be Eastern Europe’s most powerful such device, writes Cristian Gherasim, Bucharest correspondent.

The petascale computing system will help greatly with Bulgaria’s tech ambitions in the years to come.

The supercomputers will serve in the development of scientific, public and industrial applications in various fields, including bioinformatics, pharmacy, molecular and mechanical dynamics, quantum chemistry and biochemistry, artificial intelligence, personalized medicine, bioengineering, meteorology and the fight against climate change.

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Atos, the company delivering the supercomputer, said in a press release that the computer is expected to be fully operational in July 2021.

“This will be the most powerful supercomputer in Eastern Europe and will help to leverage Bulgaria’s high-tech ambitions. Atos’ Czech Republic project teams have already started the configuration tests and the supercomputer is expected to start working operationally in July 2021,” the company said in a press release.

But this is not just a Bulgarian accomplishment but also a European one, benefiting European scientific research, bolstering innovation, and providing the wider scientific community with state of the art research and development tools.

The supercomputer is co-financed by the Republic of Bulgaria and European Union EuroHPC JU program. The total investment amounts to 11.5 million euros.

The petascale computing system in Bulgaria will be similar to other supercomputing systems in university and research centers across Europe, such as CINECA in Italia, IZUM in Slovenia, LuxProvide in Luxemburg și Minho Advanced Computing Center from Portugal.

The computing system present in Bulgaria will thus consolidate EU’s network of research capabilities and strengthened its endeavors to develop new tech and research hubs in its member states.

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Computer technology

Inauguration of the European High Performance Computing Joint Undertaking Headquarters in Luxembourg

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Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton, together with Luxembourg's Foreign and European Affair Minister Jean Asselborn, and Economy Minister Franz Fayot, inaugurated the headquarters of the European High Performance Computing (EuroHPC) Joint Undertaking in Luxembourg. Commissioner Breton said: “I am delighted to inaugurate the new home for European HPC. Supercomputing is key for the digital sovereignty of the EU. High Performance Computers are crucial to harness the full potential of data — notably for AI applications, health research and industry 4.0. We are massively investing in this cutting-edge technology for Europe to remain ahead of the global tech race.” The mission of the EuroHPC Joint Undertaking is to pool European and national resources to procure and deploy world-class supercomputers and technologies.

Supercomputers will help European researchers and industry to make significant advances in areas such as bio-engineering, personalised medicine, fighting against climate change, weather forecasting, as well as in the discovery of drugs and of new materials that will benefit all EU citizens. The Commission is committed to supporting research and innovation for new supercomputing technologies, systems and products, as well as fostering the necessary skills to use the infrastructure and build a world-class ecosystem in Europe. A Commission proposal for a new EuroHPC JU Regulation, presented in September 2020, aims to enable a further investment of €8 billion to help drive and expand the work of the EuroHPC Joint Undertaking in order to provide the next generation of supercomputers and to support an ambitious HPC research and innovation agenda in the EU. More information will be available in this press release by the EuroHPC Joint Undertaking.

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EU to hit Apple with antitrust charge this week - source

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A 3D-printed Apple logo is seen in front of a displayed European Union flag in this illustration taken September 2, 2016. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

EU antitrust regulators are set to charge iPhone maker Apple (AAPL.O) this week with blocking rivals on its App Store following a complaint by music streaming service Spotify (SPOT.N), a person familiar with the matter has said, writes Foo Yun Chee.

The move, the first EU antitrust charge against Apple, could lead to a fine as much as 10% of Apple's global revenue and changes in its lucrative business model.

Reuters was the first to report about the imminent EU antitrust charge in March.

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Sweden's Spotify took its grievance to the European Commission in 2019, saying Apple unfairly restricts rivals to its own music steaming service Apple Music.

It also complained about the 30% fee levied on app developers to use Apple's in-app purchase system (IAP).

The EU competition enforcer, which has four Apple investigations including the Spotify complaint, declined to comment.

Apple referred to its March 2019 blog following the Spotify complaint, which said its App Store helped its rival to benefit from hundreds of millions of app downloads to become Europe's largest music streaming service.

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