Geekly Update - 10 December 2014
Will your next iPhone sprout wings, knock stuff off your desk, and meow? How did Psy’s “Gangnam Style” video break the Internet? And did Apple's co-founders lie about the “two guys in a garage” story for almost 40 years? 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
The NSA’s Operation AuroraGold has hacked its way into nearly every mobile service carrier on Earth, according to The Interceptor. Another bit of good news from the Snowden files.
It's a bird! It's a cat! It's an iPhone... with thrusters? According to a patent filing, Apple may be working on a combination of gyroscopes, accelerometers and GPS that will detect when an iPhone is falling and change its orientation in mid-air so it lands on its back, sparing owners the agony of a shattered screen.
The patent filing also mentions air-foil wings and air canisters that could help a phone land softly. But don't look for this cat-inspired tech in the next iPhone... Apple actually makes more money when your phone breaks.
NOW you tell me: The “two guys in a garage” story is a myth, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak finally admitted in an interview with Bloomberg. "We did no designs there, no breadboarding, no prototyping, no planning of products. We did no manufacturing there."
After proving that those annoying CAPTCHA tests are easily overcome by hacking its own CAPTCHA test, Google has come up with reCAPTCHA. Instead of deciphering fuzzy, warped characters in bizarre fonts, all you have to do is check a box next to the words, “I’m not a robot.” Webmasters can use Google reCAPTCHA for free.
A new mobile malware Trojan called DeathRing takes the disguise of a ringtone app. It can trick the phone’s owner with fake text messages and Web phish. It’s impossible to remove by ordinary means because it’s loaded at the factory into system memory. So far, DeathRing has been found only on third-tier Android phones sold in Asian countries.
“Merry Christmas” was the first text message ever sent to a phone, on December 3, 1992. The sender, Neil Papworth, was a 22 year-old software developer and test engineer with Sema Group Telecoms, which developed SMS messaging for its client, Vodafone UK.
The honor and glory of breaking YouTube’s view-counter for the first time goes to Psy’s “Gangnam Style” video. The counter was stuck at 2,147,483,647 (the largest value for a 32-bit integer) but has been extended in some unexplained way, and “Gangnam Style’s” views count is climbing again.
Starting December 1, auto-playing video ads come to Facebook mobile users. So if you blow through your data allotment and have to charge your phone every two hours, blame Mark Zuckerberg.
Dell has launched the Venue 11 Pro 7000 series of tablets. Based on the Intel M processor, they’re thinner, more power-efficient, and faster than Atom-powered devices. With Windows 8.1 and either of two optional keyboards, this could be a good laptop or desktop replacement that’s also mobile.
Samsung has rolled out Android 5.0 (Lollipop) in Poland and South Korea on its flagship phone, the Galaxy S5. Other regions will be getting Lollipop in coming weeks, says the company.
Torque Search, Microsoft’s voice-enabled Bing search app, is now available on Android phones as well as wearable devices. Instead of saying, “OK, Google” you can now shake your phone to activate voice-enabled search. Progress?
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 10 Dec 2014
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Geekly Update - 10 December 2014 (Posted: 10 Dec 2014)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved