Geekly Update - 19 June 2013
What should you do if your car orders takeout every time you pass a fast-food joint? Can police require drivers to turn over their cell phones, to check for evidence of wrong doing? And are cats now the number one reason for Internet logjams? 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
"My car just ordered pizza. AGAIN!" General Motors wants to sell apps for its smart cars through its own online store. CEO Dan Akerson envisions a world where smart location-aware cars can stream movies and interact with nearby restaurants. Somehow, this will keep drivers from being distracted.
“License, registration, and cell phone, please.” A proposed New Jersey law would authorize police to search a driver’s phone without a warrant for evidence that he was illegally using it while driving. Can't they just call the NSA to verify?
Snapcat entices cats to take pictures of themselves and post their cuteness to social media. It’s a great way to prune your friend lists.
"Oh, the humanity!" In a major victory for – well, everyone – the U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously that naturally occurring human DNA cannot be patented. Novel methods of isolating segments of natural DNA would be patentable, as would synthetic DNA encoding non-natural genetic patterns. I'm thinking that's got something to do with robots.
Google intends to buy Waze, a popular traffic navigation service, that uses real-time information from other drivers to find the best routes. The rumored $1.3 billion deal will help Google maintain its lead in mobile mapping. Oh, and it'll also keep Waze out of the hands of Apple, Facebook and Microsoft.
"Delivering hot air, via hot air." Up, up, and away in my beautiful search engine. Google has launched several high-altitude balloons equipped to give Internet access to remote areas of New Zealand. The aptly named Project Loon is set to expand to other areas.
Amazon launched a 3D printing section for all your creative needs. It features printers, supplies, instructional resources (formerly known as “books”), CAD software, and accessories.
Squaring the circle: Shark Wheels are skateboard wheels that provide a faster, smoother ride with greater lateral grip for turns. Their unique design makes them look like cubes. A Kickstarter campaign to fund mass production has already raised twice its goal.
Disabled parking space abuse infuriates most people. Parking Mobility enables citizens to snap photos of an illegally parked vehicle and send them to law enforcement along with date, time, and GPS location data. The owner of the offending vehicle gets a ticket in the mail. The snitch’s favorite charity gets up to 20% of fines paid.
"Finally... proof that Facebook is cooler than Myspace." Facebook’s newest data center is on the edge of the Arctic Circle, in the Swedish town of Lulea. The company’s most energy-efficient data center is powered by locally produced hydro-electricity and cooled by frigid ambient air.
An iPhone will automatically connect to any WiFi network named “attwifi,” even if it’s a rogue network that steals passwords and other sensitive information. This vulnerability is not unique to AT&T but Android phones don’t behave the same way. The best solution is to disable WiFi when you don’t need it.
"Use it or lose it." Yahoo email addresses that have been inactive for a year or more will be made available to new users beginning July 15, 2013. This is your chance to get a shorter, more memorable email address that you never use.
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 19 Jun 2013
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Geekly Update - 19 June 2013 (Posted: 19 Jun 2013)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved