Tech Today w/ Ken May

Featured entries

Emulator Now Runs x86 Apps On All Raspberry Pi Models

Posted by kenmay on May - 30 - 2015

DeviceGuru writes: Russia-based Eltechs announced its ExaGear Desktop virtual machine last August, enabling Linux/ARMv7 SBCs and mini-PCs to run x86 software. That meant that users of the quad-core, Cortex-A7-based Raspberry Pi 2 Model B, could use it as well, although the software was not yet optimized for it. Now Eltechs has extended extended ExaGear to support earlier ARMv6 versions of the Raspberry Pi. The company also optimized the emulator for the Pi 2 allowing, for example, Pi 2 users to use automatically forwarding startup scripts. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Verizon FiOS reps know what TV channels you watch

Posted by kenmay on May - 30 - 2015

If you call Verizon FiOS and try to cancel or downgrade your TV package, you might find that the FiOS rep knows almost as much about your TV viewing habits as you do. Verizon’s Rep Guidance software tells Verizon representatives what channels you watch to help them make a more effective sales pitch. The system, which also shows them how much Internet data you use and which pieces of TV equipment you use most, was detailed by a Verizon executive in a public presentation hosted by Data Driven NYC. A Quartz reporter  wrote about the presentation yesterday . Verizon “is now closely tracking exactly what you watch, what devices you use, and how much data you consume,” Quartz wrote. “It knows whether your household spars over DVR conflicts and how many hours your kids spend binge-watching shows on HBO. What’s more, the company is listening in on phone calls to customer service in real-time, with supervisors poised to jump at the moment they sense a fight brewing or hear trigger words from an unhappy customer, such as ‘switching to Time Warner Cable.'” Read 10 remaining paragraphs | Comments

NEW YORK—Ross Ulbricht was sentenced to life in prison Friday, following a jury’s finding in February that the 31-year-old was the mastermind behind the Silk Road, once the Internet’s largest online drug marketplace. Operating online as “Dread Pirate Roberts,” Ulbricht worked with a small staff to control everything sold on the site. He was arrested in October 2013, and the government made its case against him during a three-week trial here earlier this year. Ulbricht pleaded for leniency  during the hearing. “I wish I could go back and convince myself to take a different path,” he said. Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

First Ultraviolet Quantum Dots Shine In an LED

Posted by kenmay on May - 30 - 2015

ckwu with word that South Korean researchers have created the first UV-emitting quantum dots, and employed them in the creation of a flexible LED. Their achievement is notable because no one has previously succeeded in making quantum dots capable of emitting light at wavelengths shorter than 400 nm, which defines the upper range of the UV spectrum. Writes ckwu: To get quantum dots that emit UV, the researchers figured out how make them with light-emitting cores smaller than 3 nm in diameter. They did it by coating a light-emitting cadmium zinc selenide nanoparticle with a zinc sulfide shell, which caused the core to shrink to 2.5 nm. The quantum dots give off true UV light, at 377 nm. An LED made with the quantum dots could illuminate the anticounterfeiting marks on a paper bill. The article names a few applications of the technology, besides, including water sterilization and industrial applications. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Google Photos Hands-On: So Good, I’m Creeped Out

Posted by kenmay on May - 30 - 2015

I have taken 1235 photos and videos with my phone since May 28th, 2014, most of which I will never look at. Even if there are good photos, I’ll probably miss them. It’s just too much shit to crunch with my puny human brain. Can the new Google Photos help? Read more…

Uh Oh, GIFs Finally Work on Facebook

Posted by kenmay on May - 30 - 2015

Here’s some news: You can now embed GIFs on Facebook. Well, technically, you can post a link to a GIF, and Facebook will produce the animation, just like pretty much every other social network’s been doing for years. Read more…

Researchers in fields from epidemiology to genetics are studying mummies, using the latest imaging technology. Now we know more than ever before about what lies beneath the mummies’ wrappings — and these long-dead people are telling us a lot about ancient lives and cultures. Read more…

Feds Bust a Dark-Web Counterfeit Coupon Kingpin

Posted by kenmay on May - 29 - 2015

Sparrowvsrevolution writes: The dark web has become the go-to corner of the Internet to buy drugs, stolen financial data, guns…and counterfeit coupons for Clif bars and condoms? The FBI indicted Beauregard Wattigney yesterday for wire fraud and trademark counterfeiting on digital black market sites Silk Road and Silk Road 2. Wattigney allegedly spoofed coupons for dozens of products and sold collections of them online in exchange for Bitcoin. The FBI accused him of doing $1 million worth of collective damage to the companies he made coupons for, but a fraud consultancy believes the total financial cost of his actions was much higher. Wattigney also offered expensive lessons that taught people how to make their own coupons. “In his tutorials, [he] explained the simple breakdown of barcode creation using the increasingly universal GS1 standard: GS1 codes begin with a ‘company prefix’ that can be copied from any of the company’s products. The next six digits are the ‘offer code, ‘ which can be any random number for a counterfeit coupon, followed by the savings amount listed in cents and the required number of item purchases necessary to receive the discount.” Read more of this story at Slashdot.

jfruh writes: The FCC’s Lifeline program subsidizes phone service for very poor Americans; it gained notoriety under the label “Obamaphone, ” even though the program started under Reagan and was extended to cell phones under Clinton. Now the FCC is proposing that the program, which is funded by a fee on telecom providers, be extended to broadband, on the logic that high-speed internet is as necessary today as telephone service was a generation ago. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

A Huge List of Brands That Come With Lifetime Warranties

Posted by kenmay on May - 29 - 2015

When you plan to have something for a long time, it makes sense to pay for quality. And it makes even more sense when companies will replace your item if it wears out or becomes unusable. GOBankingRates rounds up 32 brands with lifetime warranties. Read more…