Geekly Update - 23 Aug 2017
What exactly is the 'cop button' feature in the new iPhone operating system? Why couldn't Bernie Dohnt sink his scale model of the Titanic? And would you allow a robot to perform your funeral services? 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
What do you name a baby girl born during a solar eclipse? Eclipse, of course. Hey Mom, "Celeste" or "Luna" might have been better choices.
This just in from the Internet of Broken Things Department: The smart lock that AirBnB recommends to hosts recently received an update that was intended for locks in a different model, rendering it unable to communicate with the maker’s web service. That means no remote access, managing codes for keypad entry and status alerts. Worse, it means remedial updates can’t be pushed out to the affected locks, which are now just expensive deadbolts.
Robots are poised to displace Buddhist priests in Japan. One Japanese company has written special software for the Pepper robot, which can perform discounted funeral rites, chanting in a computerized voice while tapping a drum.
"Bernie, Do'nt!" A 1/72th scale model of the Titanic, 3D-printed by Australian marine engineer Bernie Dohnt, has escaped the fate of the original. Dohnt meant to sink his model, which cruised perfectly well, but his Kickstarter campaign failed to recoup the $7000 AUD that he sunk into the project. So he sold the model to the “Titanic: the Exhibition” tourist attraction for $2,000.
Speaking of Kickstarters, here’s one that has fully funded development of the world’s smallest and cheapest laser engraver. Now you can have that tribal brand you’ve always wanted.
“Alexa, I’m ready to walk,” says a paraplegic, and Amazon’s personal assistant activates his bionic exoskeleton, making it do just that. No word on what happens if Alexa misunderstands the command, “Alexa, I’m ready to sit.”
Once again, some idiot failed to secure his Amazon Web Services database. This time the personal info of 1.8 million Illinois voters was exposed for anyone to download.
Apple’s imminent iOS 11 contains a cop button feature. Five swift taps will disable TouchID temporarily, preventing police from forcing the owner to unlock the iPhone. The phone’s passcode must be used instead, and police cannot compel a suspect to reveal the contents of his mind.
Colorado’s Dept. of Transportation unveiled the world’s first autonomous crash-absorbing vehicle, an unmanned truck that follows behind slow-moving stripe-painting vehicles and takes the hit from any careless driver.
The “Wall of Entropy” in the lobby of content delivery network CloudFlare generates random numbers used to encrypt traffic from the ebbs and flows of 100 Lava Lamps.
A Ukrainian hacker whose code modules were used to hack the servers of the Democratic National Committee has turned state’s evidence and spilled interesting details about Russian meddling in several nations’ elections.
ProPublica and Google are teaming up to document every hate crime that makes news in the USA. The federal government is supposed to do this, but it relies on state law enforcement agencies that fail to report many hate crimes.
Your thoughts on these topics are welcome. Post your comment or question below...
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 23 Aug 2017
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Geekly Update - 23 Aug 2017 (Posted: 23 Aug 2017)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved