Geekly Update - 14 January 2021

Category: Tech-News

Did Bill Gates slip a secret 5G chip inside the COVID-19 vaccine? Will your next computer blame YOU when the dog passes gas? Are you ready for a 'sweeping visual rejuvenation' of Windows 10? And does a CIA data dump prove that UFOs exist? Get answers in today's Geekly Update... it's jam-packed with the latest tech news. This issue is guaranteed to make you 146% smarter -- you'll see why. Read, think, and, comment!

The AskBobRankin Geekly Update

Is this schematic proof of a 5G chip inside the COVID-19 vaccine? Or is it a guitar pedal? The editors at Popular Mechanics do a smackdown on 5G conspiracy theorists.

Forget foldable phones... LG Electronics showed video of a rollable smartphone at the 2021 Consumer Electronics Show. Just another reason to ask "Are you happy to see me?"

This 40-inch concept TV demoed at CES 2021 is completely wireless. It draws power via wifi, so it needs no power cord or AC outlet.

Facebook-owned WhatsApp says end-to-end ecryption tech means they can't see your private messages - and neither can Facebook. A recent kerfuffle over a WhatsApp privacy policy update led many users to believe that Facebook was demanding that WhatsApp users share personal info with Facebook. Turns out that's only partially true.

Covid-19 5G Chip diagram?

The Galaxy S21, Samsung's newest flagship phone, was just announced at Samsung Unpacked, with a $200 price cut compared to the previous S20 model. Samsung also revealed Galaxy Buds Pro, and the SmartTag tracker, a competitor to Tile's tracking tags.

Passing the Smell Test: Researchers have combined biology and circuitry to create a biohybrid sensor that can act as an electronic sense of smell. The gadget can detect odors in gaseous form. Great... now your computer will know if it was you or the dog.

Windows 10X is a new lightweight version of Windows, meant for use on tablets and laptops. It's also meant to be competition for Chrome OS that powers Chromebooks. A writer at TheVerge says "Windows 10X feels like a preview" of a "sweeping visual rejuvenation" of Windows 10 that Microsoft plans to announce later this year. 

Sysmon, a component of Microsoft's Sysinternals, can now detect when malware is tampering with running processes. Advanced malware can inject malicious code into a legitimate Windows process, and evade detection by most security software. The technical terms used to describe this are process hollowing and herpaderping. What's next... herpa-derpa-derping?

The Black Vault, which bills itself as the largest privately run archive of declassified documents in the world, has released a trove of the CIA's UFO documents. Let me know if you find any little green men.

Firefox's backspace key will no longer function as a "back button" because the folks at Mozilla found that it was often causing accidental data loss. Pressing backspace when the cursor is in a text input field will still delete the character to the left. Google Chrome made the decision to disable the backspace key for page navigation in 2016.

Your thoughts on these topics are welcome! Post your comment or question below...

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Most recent comments on "Geekly Update - 14 January 2021"

Posted by:

14 Jan 2021

Popular Mechanics is known to be owned by a far left group. All you need to know.

Posted by:

Bruce Simmons
14 Jan 2021

I would not get the vaccine anyway as many people have died or had very adverse reactions. No one knows what this will do your body in the future.
Your best way to ovoid covid is to keep healthy and take Vitamin D3.

Posted by:

Nunna Yerbiz
14 Jan 2021

Ummm, no. Popular Mechanics is owned by Hearst Communications, definitely not a left-leaning organization.

Posted by:

14 Jan 2021

Many people have not died from the vaccine. The reports have been false. I am a nurse and wouldn’t lie to you.

Posted by:

Rick Krieger
14 Jan 2021

I just looked up "Adverse reactions to covid 19 vaccine" and there were 21 cases of anaphylaxis reactions from Dec, 14th - 23th from the Pfizer vaccine out of 1,893,360 vaccines given. That breaks down to 11.1 serious reactions per 1m doses given. 71% of these reactions occurred within 15 minutes of the Vaccination. 17 of the 21 had reported a history of allergies and most received Epi to treat their symptoms 4 were sent to the hospital for further treatment and no one died from the vaccine. Other reactions were, pruritis, rash, itchy and scratchy sensations in the throat, and mild respiratoy symptoms. You can read the whole report on

EDITOR'S NOTE: In fairness, there is a report that 23 people have died in Norway after taking the vaccine. "Norwegian officials said 23 people had died in the country a short time after receiving their first dose of the vaccine. Of those deaths, 13 have been autopsied, with the results suggesting that common side effects may have contributed to severe reactions in frail, elderly people" (See There's also a report of a Florida doctor who died. (See I'm not passing judgement, just passing along some facts.

Posted by:

Ken H
14 Jan 2021

I wondered where the wackos would go after Parler was shut I know, to the comments section of Bob Rankin's excellent tech email newsletters.

Posted by:

14 Jan 2021

I don't have any dogs. I will never pass their "Smell Test." [insert cry laughing emoji]

Posted by:

14 Jan 2021

Uze guyz just sent a warning salvo to askBob and maybe he will be more careful to NOT throw himself into the middle of the socio-political smack-downs that have taken the web hostage...

Posted by:

Hubert Brochard
14 Jan 2021

One cannot insert an electronic microchip onto a vaccine for many obvious reasons, one of them being the difference in size: a microchip is at least a 1000 times (maybe much, much more!) bigger than a vaccine, which is a piece of DNA or RNA (it is difficult to be smaller).

Posted by:

15 Jan 2021

Thanks Bob. Informative and amusing as ever. It beggars belief how many people uncritically swallow the conspiracy theories and fake news about COVID, and everything else for that matter.

Posted by:

15 Jan 2021

There are at least 5 doses in each vaccine ampule so there would have to be a few extra chips in each ampule to be sure each person got at least one chip. Some people could end up with 2 or more chips. That’s value for money.

Posted by:

15 Jan 2021

Microchips in a vaccine? Just how gullible do these people think we are?
The only 'injectable' microchip is the ID chip in your pet - which is installed with a much larger needle than the vaccine and is basically a 'this is me' device, using similar technology to your contactless debit card. (Oh, I forgot - the USA doesn't have tech as advanced as Europe...) As for the chip circuit, I'm not an electronics expert, and even I can recognise an amplifier and waveform modifier - it's a wah-wah (or similar name) circuit, for Heaven's sake.
I honestly think the little green men must have already infiltrated the brains of these theorists and implanted an idiot gene!

EDITOR'S NOTE: Of course I think the vaccine/chip story is silly. But ten years ago, a nine nanometer microchip was announced. For reference, that's about 100,000 times smaller than a grain of salt. (See

And speaking of salt, there's this: IBM Unveils the World's Smallest Computer That Is Tinier Than a Salt Grain (See

Posted by:

15 Jan 2021

Interesting times! Sometimes its hard to tell whether people are mocking or promoting idiotic conspiracy theories. I have long thought that most people have far more mental capacity than they ever utilise, and many people, for emotional reasons, deliberately cripple their minds with unwarranted certainty.

Posted by:

16 Jan 2021

Windows 10X: I heard about this recently, and I truly hope MS releases this. I have a low powered Acer netbook with only a 32GB SSD (non-replacable, non-upgradable). I struggle with every single Win 10 upgrade because there's no space on the drive, and that's with virtually NOTHING installed.
I'm hoping this will be the solution. It's a simple laptop, I don't need full windows on it.

Galaxy S21: Why did Samsung's Galaxy S model numbers jump by 10 last year? It went from S10, to S20, and now S21. Did they just want to distance themselves from the iPhone numbers?

@Margaret: reported on 15-Jan-2021, 23 people DIED in Norway after receiving the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. Officially. Unable to find an overall death number for this or any other COVID vaccine. Either the numbers aren't there (unlikely), or they're being "hidden" (very likely). Oops, just saw Bob's EDITOR NOTE in a reply above.

Posted by:

18 Jan 2021

Let us suppose that 23 people have died. Out of several millions of doses of vaccine. That still makes it the safest, most effective substance to protect not only the individuals, but most other people too. Many more people will die horrible deaths from Covid-19.
In addition, if we were all out of lockdown, around 38,000 people would die due to road "accidents", mostly preventable actions by people ignoring speed limits, driving drunk, being distracted. ASA or aspirin sends more people to hospital than any vaccine. Get a grip of reality folks! We have forgotten TB, measles, polio, because.......vaccines worked!

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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Geekly Update - 14 January 2021 (Posted: 14 Jan 2021)
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