We lust for high-speed data transmission. Whether we want to connect to the Internet, or transfer a file locally from one machine to another, we continue to invest insane amounts of money to upgrade our infrastructure. But still, most of us are usually deprived of our sweet high-speed data transmission by throttling ISPs and limitations of our equipment. We can’t do much about those noble souls who control our Internet speeds, but we can increase our local transmission speeds manifolds by using some specialized devices based on widespread technologies. One such technology is Wi-Fi and it was kinda big deal for us when Samsung Electronics announced the development of its 60GHz Wi-Fi technology, which it claims accelerates data transmission by five times.
The next time you upload your cool GIFs to Imgur, they will be converted into MP4 format automatically by the website, and the converted file will be denoted with a ‘.gifv’ extension. Imgur announced the Project GIFV yesterday, and said in the official announcement that they are reimagining the looping GIF video with all the richness it deserves as a key piece of Internet culture. The converted MP4 files are significantly smaller than their equivalent GIFs, which allows them to load at lightning-fast speeds with better quality, according to Imgur. Although smaller in size, the converted MP4 video looks and behaves exactly like a GIF and offers substantial increase in performance.
Imgur has put up a sample ‘gifv’ file on the website which, if they are to be believed, was initially a 50MB file, and shrunk into a mere 3.4MB after the conversion.
AT&T has agreed to pay an amount of $80 million to the FTC, $5 million to the FCC and $20 million to the 50 states and the DC in penalties for charging its mobile customers without their permission for third-party services like ringtones, wallpapers, and text message subscriptions for horoscopes, flirting tips, and celebrity gossip. Although it’s remarkable that a telecommunications giant has agreed to settle the allegations of phone cramming and will be refunding its customers the money it ‘extorted’ from them, the FTC says you should not expect to receive your refund for at least 9 months.
So, if you file a claim for refund right now, you’re not going to get anything from either the FTC or the company before the July of next year. That’s an awful lot of waiting time for a few dollars, don’t you think?
A number of media outlets are reporting that HP is planning to split its business into two divisions: PCs & printers, and enterprise hardware, and could make the announcement today. Their reports cite some of the troubles HP is facing for this apparent breakup of the product divisions. Although no confirmation has been made by any HP spokesperson as of now, and most of the media outlets reporting about this breakdown are citing the usual ‘people familiar with the matter’, it wouldn’t come off as a surprise if HP indeed splits its business. Why? Because it’s been common knowledge since the past few months that some sort of restructuring was about to happen sooner or later at Hewlett-Packard.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Meg Whitman, would head the PC & printer division aka the consumer division, while the enterprise division would be controlled by Patricia Russo.
Google Glass in the hands of law enforcement agencies? Surely the title is wrong! Why the hell would any law enforcement agency want to use a device which has the ability to record everything that goes around the wearer? True, Glass is excellent and has tons of features that would make the life of detectives and other government personnel easier, but it comes with a few little problems called breach of privacy and data collection, which the company would claim is totally anonymous but I’m ready to bet that it really is not. Surely, the people who have to deal at times with the most personal details of the population during their job wouldn’t wear a device which will leak those details to the data analysts at G, right?
Apparently, Dubai Police don’t think so, for they are planning to equip their detectives with the Glass pretty soon.
Autonomous drones have been here since 2009 at the least, and are actively used for a number of purposes by different users. We like autonomous drones for they apparently are the future of warfare, reconnaissance, surveillance, package delivery and all the other things futurists describe in their posts. So, all in all autonomous drones could someday be called a man’s best friend for all the services they would provide in the future, but then there’s the question of security which makes me wonder if our creations can be used against us by the other members of our race. I’ve been pondering about the same question ever since the US Navy announced today about its plans related to autonomous patrol boats, which they are calling Swarmboats.
The Swarmboats will be capable of protecting Navy ships, and, autonomously “swarm” offensively on hostile vessels, according to Office of Naval Research.
We’ve all seen those cool looking USB flash drives in science-fiction and police-procedural TV shows and movies which once plugged into a computer take over its working completely. Espionage, remote control, malware introduction are just a few of the magic tricks these flash drives are capable of performing, not to mention hijacking your personal and professional life. Couple of months ago, German security researchers Jakob Lell and Karsten Nohl unveiled a flaw they found in the USB standard which could be exploited to install malware on USB based flash storage devices enabling them to spread that malware on computers without raising any red flags with the security in place. They presented their findings in Black Hat USA 2014, but didn’t publish the code.
Two security researchers have managed to reverse engineer Lell and Nohl’s findings and have made the source code available online on GitHub.