Geekly Update - 01 October 2014

Category: Tech-News

What part of p-r-i-v-a-c-y doesn't the FBI director understand? Why is the Internet waking you up at 4 o'clock every morning? And can you really use Gnutella spread as 3D printer ink? Get answers to these burning questions, and the scoop on the latest tech news, in this edition of the Geekly Update. It's guaranteed to make you 146% smarter. Read, think and comment!

The AskBobRankin Geekly Update

Yahoo! is killing off Yahoo! Directory, the human-curated index of Web sites that started the whole Yahoo! thing back in 1994. It was originally called, “Jerry and David's Guide to the World Wide Web” but after only three months the cooler Yahoo! monicker was retrofitted with a meaning: “Yet Another Hierarchical Officious Oracle.”

Reports of iPhone 6 and 6 Plus units bending “just from being in a user’s pocket” inspired Consumer Reports to do some scientific testing. They found that it takes 70 pounds of force to permanently deform an iPhone 6, and 90 pounds to bend a 6 Plus. Samsung and HTC products fared about the same. What's in your back pocket?

FBI director James Comey says he’s reached out to Apple and Google "to understand what they're thinking and why they think it makes sense" to enable default encryption on iOS and Android phones. Comey is like the 7-foot Australian teen who cannot understand why he was kicked out of Comic Con for poking and touching random people while dressed in a creepy black suit.
Geekly Update 10-01-2014

Apple released its first bug fix for iOS 8 less than a week after the new operating system’s debut, and some users discovered that Touch ID and cellular service were considered “bugs.” Apple has pulled the buggy bug-killer for now.

MOOCs – Massively Open Online Classes – really do result in students learning at least as much as they do from traditional, lecture-based classes, according to a detailed study conducted by MIT researches. Even students who were less prepared for a course learned as well as the better-edjimacated.

Wakie is an app for making new friends or enemies by volunteering to call strangers who have difficulty waking up in the morning. Phone numbers remain anonymous and “sleepies” can block unwanted callers, but remember that the Internet has an infinite supply of sadists.

Talko is an app for talking on your iPhone. (Seriously.) The brainchild of a former Microsoft executive (yes, SERIOUSLY!), Talko can record and share voice calls, send voice memos, and send photos of what you’re seeing to someone you’re calling.

Netflix Spoilers is a light-hearted rehabilitation treatment for people who spoil other people’s TV and movie entertainment by prematurely revealing key tidbits of information. It could save your life someday.

A 3D printer that uses Nutella for ink may seem crazy, but living in the vast arctic desolation of Canada will do that to you.

Shrink-wrapped video games are much cheaper in Asia than in North America, so enterprising “code strippers” buy games there, strip the activation codes to sell, and throw away the CDs. Buyers can get burned if they buy an Asian code that won’t work on the North American version of a game.

Your thoughts on these topics are welcome. Post your comment or question below, or I'll sign you up for a 4AM wakie call...

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Most recent comments on "Geekly Update - 01 October 2014"

Posted by:

01 Oct 2014

Hi Bob

Those two Canadian inventors live in Waterloo, Ontario which is on a similar latitude to Lansing/Grand Rapids, Michigan. So that puts Waterloo in the southwest corner of Ontario - not the cold wastes of Canada as so many in the United States seem to visualize. Just thought that you might like to know.:D

Posted by:

The 146%
01 Oct 2014

In regards to default encryption on iOS and Android, with the advent of quantum computing, in a few years' time it will be just as easy to crack encryption codes as it is now to crack poorly secured WiFi connections. The Federal government is no doubt using our taxes to fund the research of quantum computing in hopes of keeping a few steps ahead in the game. To me, that's unacceptable. I'd rather die on my feet, than keep living on my knees.

Posted by:

Jim Stewart
01 Oct 2014

Hi Bob
I happen live about a 90 minute drive from Waterloo, Ontario. Last winter in my city there were very many days of cold arctic desolation with as many days that ere colder than the bottom of a penguin's foot and snowbanks piled as high as a polar bear standing on his hind legs atop the roof of a Prius. However in my little city though we understand the meaning of humor and sarcasm. (and 85-90 degree summer days) And I hate Nutella.

Posted by:

02 Oct 2014

Reference the Apple "buggy bug killer" article. For years Apple owners have laughed at MS users and their various problems etc. Now it's our turn. Welcome to the real world chaps!!! Glad I don't own anything Apple.

Posted by:

02 Oct 2014

HI: I get 1-2 phone calls, on my reg. home phone, 1 of 2 phones. 4 hrs. apart nightly, it rings once, says 'ringing', signs off before my ans. mch. kicks in, can't 'stop it'. Is best sol. to change the main number, keep secret, & unlisted. k + PS: Is this an 'wakie phone trick on me'.

Posted by:

05 Oct 2014

The link for "Apple has pulled the buggy bug-killer" is infected with malware. Malware entry: MW:IFRAME:HD202
Do you check links before posting?


EDITOR'S NOTE: That's a false positive. Seems to happen often with the scanner. No malware on that page.

Posted by:

09 Oct 2014

Now showing an outdated web server for at

And previous report doesn't look like a false positive as it seems to document a chinese hidden iframe

Hidden Iframes. Details:

EDITOR'S NOTE: I've scanned the source code myself, and no such link or iframe is there. There is a link on the page to ZDNet China (, so maybe that's what Sucuri is complaining about. But it doesn't affect the ZDNet page linked in my article.

Also, runs Apache 2.2.25, released in July 2014. It's the latest version available for the operating system on my server. Apache 2.2.27 patches two minor flaws, neither of which apply to my site.

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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Geekly Update - 01 October 2014 (Posted: 1 Oct 2014)
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