Geekly Update - 27 February 2013
What can the FBI learn about you, if you happen to be standing near a criminal? If you cheat on a Math test, will the local police catch you? And how could winning Google's new contest actually cost you $1500? 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 on...
The AskBobRankin Geekly Update
"Smokin' in the Boy's Room?" Not so fast, buster... Police in several Pennsylvania school districts will soon be able to remotely access video from surveillance cameras inside the schools.
According to "secret" FBI files recently released, the FBI has been using “Stingray” devices to track suspects via cellphone data since at least 1995. Inevitably, Stingray also traps data from the phones of innocent bystanders, raising additional legal and Constitutional questions.
No honor among thieves: The Pirate Bay has threatened to sue a Finnish anti-piracy organization for pirating The Pirate Bay’s pirate ship logo. “People must understand what is right and wrong,” The Pirate Bay says.
"You May Have Already Lost!" Google is running a contest to select up to 8,000 Google Glass testers. No purchase is required to win, but winners will have to pay $1,500 plus sales tax for a pair of Google Glass spectacles.
Used games may be rejected by the next-generation Xbox, according to rumor published by gaming website Edge.com. Gamestop, a big reseller of games, says 60% of surveyed customers will balk at buying consoles that include such blocking technology.
Imagine smart clothing into which you can plug an iPod, with controls on a shirtsleeve. Now imagine it’s part of the U.S. Postal Service’s upcoming fashion line, called “Rain, Heat, and Snow.”
Internet users are tired of CAPTCHA tests of their humanity which take an average of 14 seconds to solve. Advertisers are tired of their ads being ignored. Solution: replace CAPTCHA with ad-based puzzles that take half as long to solve.
Two million Americans use cell phone signal boosters to improve reception. A recent FCC ruling demanded that users must turn off their boosters until wireless carriers give permission to use them.
The $1299 price tag of Google’s new Pixel Chromebook is a lot higher than the previous performance king, Samsung’s $550 Series-5 550. Google engineers asked themselves, “What could we do if we really wanted to design the best computer possible at the best price possible?” Just design, not sell, would be a good guess.
Your credit rating and job prospects may be affected by your social media activity. Strong LinkedIn networks are correlated to a healthy, creditworthy career. Racist remarks suggest someone is likely to lose a job.
This summer, let a robot clean your BBQ grill. Coming to retailers in June, the Grillbot is essentially a Roomba for gas or charcoal grills, priced at $70 to $100.
The New York City Police Department has created a specialized unit devoted to recovering lost or stolen Apple devices. Will Microsoft, and Google join forces to sue for discrimination?
D-I-Y geeks will love or hate Microsoft’s Surface Pro tablet/PC, depending on how much they enjoy a challenge. The device earned the lowest possible repairability score in iFixit.com’s teardown.
Your thoughts on these topics are welcome! Post your comment or question below...
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 27 Feb 2013
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Geekly Update - 27 February 2013 (Posted: 27 Feb 2013)
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Most recent comments on "Geekly Update - 27 February 2013"
27 Feb 2013
MS bashers rejoice - iPad 3 is twice as good as Surface Pro - it gets a whopping score of 2/10 for repairability!
However, it also appears the new iPad is a poor candidate for repair due to damage or wear, as well as for recycling, notwithstanding Apple’s claims of green-ness. Kyle Weins reports that new iPad’s design is essentially the same as the iPad 2, which iFixIt had originally awarded a repairability score of 4. However, he says they’ve learned a lot about the design since then, and have spent the past year trying to repair the iPad 2 with mixed success, so consequently they are rating the new iPad an abysmal 2 out of 10, and retroactively dropping the iPad 2′s repairability score to a 2 as well. He points out that the adhesive bonding of the front panel makes it extremely difficult to remove without damaging the glass, which in turn makes repair and end-of-life recycling very difficult.
28 Feb 2013
Pay $1500 if you win Google Glasses! That should be a real shocker for those who win and didn't read the fine print :)
03 Mar 2013
I would guess that a lot of the people the FBI tracks are types like greenpeace and some democrats. You certainly don't need much to be spied upon these days. At least the traditions established by J.Edgar are being continued in this age of high tech.