About Our Galaxy Fold Teardown

Found on iFixit on Monday, 29 April 2019
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After two days of intense public interest, iFixit has removed our teardown of Samsung’s Galaxy Fold.

We were provided our Galaxy Fold unit by a trusted partner. Samsung has requested, through that partner, that iFixit remove its teardown. We are under no obligation to remove our analysis, legal or otherwise. But out of respect for this partner, whom we consider an ally in making devices more repairable, we are choosing to withdraw our story until we can purchase a Galaxy Fold at retail.

Samsung has successfully censored a 3rd party article by abusing its power. Only if it was not for an archive.

New Intel Chip Bug Can Expose All Data on a Computer to Hackers

Found on eWEEK on Saturday, 30 March 2019
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The role of the VISA technology is to provide a flexible signals analysis processor that can be used in debugging of computer hardware, primarily computer system boards.

They said that a vulnerability they’d previously discovered, (INTEL-SA-00086) that allowed them to run unsigned code in the Intel Management Engine, also allowed them access to the VISA hardware.

Other research has shown that access to the management engine may be possible through a network connection. If that turns out to be the case, then remote hacking becomes possible because physical access is no longer required.

Intel chips have more and more problems. It looks like they are a security nightmare for critical hardware.

Here's why your AirPods battery life is getting worse, and what you can do about it

Found on Apple Insider on Saturday, 23 March 2019
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It's impossible to be completely statistically accurate about how long AirPod batteries last because it depends on too many things. If you make or receive phone calls via your AirPods, for instance, you will of course drain the battery faster. If you take them out and leave them on your desk without playing anything, they will drain anyway.

Those 2016 AirPods first gave us that baleful low battery sound after one hour and 19 minutes. We got a second at one hour and 59 minutes. Then at two hours, 6 minutes, they died.

"If you've got a dead or dying battery in an AirPod," said the same source inside Apple, "bring it in to the Apple Store with your proof of purchase if you didn't buy it directly from us, and store-stock depending, you'll walk out for a replacement single bud with a new battery for $49."

First they remove the cables for the headphones and replace it with quickly dying batteries, then they charge you for fixing that failures. You can think what you want about Apple, but they have good marketing to steal your money out of your pockets.

How a wireless keyboard lets hackers take full control of connected computers

Found on Ars Technica on Saturday, 16 March 2019
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While the keyboard and mouse send input that’s protected with the time-tested Advanced Encryption Standard, the USB dongle that accepts the input accepts unencrypted packets as well, as long as they’re in the proper format.

Matthias Deeg, a SySS researcher, said there is no reliable way keyboard users can protect themselves against the vulnerabilities other than to ensure they are completely isolated from all other radio-based devices.

That wouldn't happen if people would not want everything to be wireless.

The 6 reasons why Huawei gives the US and its allies security nightmares

Found on Technology Review on Monday, 31 December 2018
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The detention in Canada of Meng Wanzhou, Huawei’s CFO and the daughter of its founder, is further inflaming tensions between the US and China. Her arrest is linked to a US extradition request.

Behind this very public drama is a long-running, behind-the-scenes one centered on Western intelligence agencies’ fears that Huawei poses a significant threat to global security.

In its defense, Huawei can point to the fact that no security researchers have found back doors in its products. “There’s all this concern, but there’s never been a smoking gun,” says Paul Triolo of the Eurasia Group.

The US and Europe are at fault for the problem, so they cannot complain at all. Over the past decades, more and more production has been outsourced to China because it was cheaper there thanks to non-existing protection of workers. At the same time, these industry sectors have been rooted out on the homelands. It's been obvious from the beginning, but greed and "free market" ignore common sense in favor of money.

Kansas trying to unload $10 million in computer equipment

Found on AP News on Sunday, 23 December 2018
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The state still owes $2 million on the equipment, which it bought in 2016 as part of a failed plan to develop a centralized storage system, call Kansas GovCloud, for computer information. That idea was canceled by state IT officials who said it was too expensive. Instead, the state contracts with an outside company to store data on remote servers.

“We keep changing our IT philosophy as a state. Knee-jerk reactions. We need an overall picture to understand the direction the state needs to go,” she said.

What a fine example of wasted taxpayer money, mixed with incompetence. To make it worse, in the end they just shoved it onto "the cloud" (read: someone else's server which they do not have any control over).

The Commodore Amiga Was A Computer Ahead Of Its Time

Found on Gizmodo on Saturday, 15 December 2018
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Despite being ahead of its time when it was unveiled in 1985, the Commodore Amiga didn't survive past 1996.

The Amiga had enough support from consumers to sell over the years, with the stripped-back Amiga 500 doing particularly well. Video games did well on the platform, thanks to its technical edge.

It was superior. However, Commodore borked it completely and sunk the ship.

Helium implicated in weird iPhone malfunctions

Found on Ars Technica on Wednesday, 31 October 2018
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The iPhone user guide warns that proximity to helium can impair functionality and that to recover, devices should be left to air out for a week or so in an environment far away from the rogue helium.

Smartphones contain microelectromechanical systems (MEMS): tiny mechanical systems that are integrated into chips.

That's probably the weirdest way to make a smartphone stop working that we've heard. As for why non-Apple devices appear to escape without harm? They might use different seals or perhaps aren't using MEMS devices in such critical roles.

Or they use cheaper MEMs which have a lower quality to maximize profits.

Printer Makers Are Crippling Cheap Ink Cartridges Via Bogus 'Security Updates'

Found on Motherboard on Wednesday, 17 October 2018
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Printer maker Epson is under fire this month from activist groups after a software update prevented customers from using cheaper, third party ink cartridges. It’s just the latest salvo in a decades-long effort by printer manufacturers to block consumer choice, often by disguising printer downgrades as essential product improvements.

Hardware makers began cooking draconian restrictions into printers, ranging from unnecessary cartridge expiration dates to obnoxious DRM and firmware updates blocking the use of “unofficial” cartridges.

Along with net neutrality, there is a clear need for ink neutrality too.

Facebook unveils smart displays, promises not to snoop on your video calls

Found on Ars Technica on Monday, 08 October 2018
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In addition to their price and size differences, the Portal+ has a more powerful speaker that includes two tweeters with high-range frequency and a single, four-inch bass speaker for richer sound. Both devices have a four-mic array that's designed to pick up your voice no matter where you are in the room.

Facebook hasn't been the most forthcoming company when it comes to letting users know which data it collects and how it's using that data. It also doesn't have the best track record when it comes to keeping users' data safe.

Facebook said it doesn't "listen to, view, or keep the contents of" Portal video calls and that all video calls are encrypted as well.

Yeah. Sure.