Geekly Update - 03 December 2015
How long does it take the government to waste a billion dollars? What's even more annoying than flying a drone over your neighbor's back yard? And what new technology makes it possible for drivers to spend more time NOT looking at the road? 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
A New York startup called Bond uses modified 3-D printers and Monte Blanc pens to create robotic handwritten notes for all occasions. The cost is $3, which includes mailing the letter for you. The only thing missing is a smudge of Mom's lipstick on the back of the envelope.
Spybot Anti-Beacon for Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10 is a free utility that disables all the telemetry features that have sparked privacy concerns, but without all the adware and half-baked programming of hastier efforts.
You think drones are cool? The lightest, fastest, most maneuverable personal jetpack ever made is shown zipping around the Statue of Liberty in the video embedded in this article.
Los Angeles is deploying “smart” light poles that include miniaturized cellular towers. It is hoped these “invisible towers” will help relieve network congestion. More likely, it'll just mean more distracted drivers. “Cool, now I can post pics of my morning commute, while I drive!”
The good news: A panel of journalists who do a lot of research on Wikipedia have compiled a list of the most fascinating Wikipedia articles you’ve never read.” The bad news: Journalists do a lot of their research on Wikipedia.
Walmart and other large retailers are warning of long checkout lines this holiday season because, they fear, shoppers will be baffled by new EMV “chipped” card checkout procedures. Really, how is this different than using ATMs, which have been around since the 1970s?
An Australian woman posted on Facebook a selfie that showed her winning horse race ticket, complete with its barcode. By the time she got to the payout window, one of her “friends” had duplicated the barcode and claimed her $869 prize at an automated betting machine.
"Linear TV is a mature, declining business," says Charlie Ergen, Dish Network's CEO; as proof, Dish’s satellite TV business lost 178,000 subscribers while its on-demand Sling TV service gained 155,000 customers in the last quarter.
Ooops? An Iranian cyberespionage group infected its own command-and-control servers with its own keylogger malware, enabling counterspies to see exactly what the Iranians were up to. (Which no doubt, enabled counter-counterspies to spy on the spies who were spying on the other spies.)
Your tax dollars at work… Ten years and $1 billion after commencing its automation of immigration paperwork processing, the Dept. of Homeland Security admits that it has only one immigration form online, and that the whole project needs to be scrapped.
Wipe the smug off the faces of your Linux geek friends by showing them the first disk-encrypting ransomware designed for Linux. “All your penguins are belong to us now.”
Your thoughts on these topics are welcome. Post your comment or question below...
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 3 Dec 2015
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Geekly Update - 03 December 2015 (Posted: 3 Dec 2015)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved