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Thomas Claburn

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heat wave

Azure North Europe downed by the curse of the Irish – sunshine

Amid forecasts of heat and fears of water shortage in Ireland on Monday, Microsoft was about to confront a drought of a different kind: an Azure service outage. The disruption, which lasted from 1744 UTC on Tuesday, June 19 to 0430 UTC on Wednesday, June 20, downed a slew of services, as we previously reported. What was not …
Thomas Claburn, 22 Jun 2018
Boot crushes duckling - pic Shutterstock

Smyte users not smitten with Twitter: APIs killed minutes after biz gobble

Updated Twitter, known for its rather rocky relationship with developers, cemented its reputation for missteps on Thursday – by announcing the acquisition of content cleansing and security biz Smyte and almost immediately disconnecting the firm's existing customers. The deal, for an undisclosed sum, will allow Twitter to apply Smyte's …
Thomas Claburn, 22 Jun 2018
This is the blockchain. Yes, THE blockchain

Amid 'idiotic blockchain phase,' EY and Microsoft tout smart contracts

In an effort to demonstrate there are actual uses for blockchain technology, global professional services biz EY and Microsoft have teamed up to offer companies a way to manage rights and royalties. Though the system is designed to serve any industry that deals with intellectual property licensing and royalty payments, the …
Thomas Claburn, 22 Jun 2018
angry employee

IBM loses mainframe docs down the back of the web, customers cry 'sabotage'

Earlier this month, IBM's attempt to redesign its website broke links to product documentation – and all hell broke loose. On the IBM-MAIN mailing list, z/OS mainframe customers decried the changes as sabotage. People looking for IBM tools have been unable to find them. One aggrieved individual urged SHARE, an independent …
Thomas Claburn, 21 Jun 2018
Dart board

Mate, have a Flutter on the Darts: Google's mobe app toolkit for Fuchsia, others emerges

On Wednesday, Google's cross-platform mobile framework Flutter reached Preview Release 1, a designation that places the code somewhere between buggy beta and less buggy 1.0. "The shift from beta to release preview signals our confidence in the stability and quality of what we have, and our focus on bug fixing and stabilization …
Thomas Claburn, 21 Jun 2018
Image by ART production http://www.shutterstock.com/gallery-3278237p1.html

Microsoft Edge bug odyssey shows why we can't have nice things

Updated Earlier this year, Jake Archibald, developer advocate for Google Chrome, found a bug affecting Mozilla Firefox and Microsoft Edge – and had two very different experiences trying to get the problem fixed. Mozilla, he said this week in a blog post recounting the saga, responded within three hours. And because the browser maker …
Thomas Claburn, 20 Jun 2018
Lock on a board. Photo by shutterstock

Did you have locking down AI and blockchain as possible Intel SGX uses? If so, congrats...

Israel Cyber Week At the Cyber Week security conference in Israel on Tuesday, chip giant Intel plans to discuss how it is addressing threats to the overexposed tech celebrities known as AI and blockchain. Spoiler: its strategy involves enticing other companies to implement Intel Software Guard Extensions (SGX). In remarks provided in advance …
Thomas Claburn, 20 Jun 2018
Usain Bolt

Facebook floats BOLT to jolt code out of bit bloat

Facebook has open sourced a binary optimization and layout tool, itself optimized into the acronym BOLT, in the hope it can make large applications faster. The compiled code for large applications – the sort Facebook runs – tend to be too big to cram into the instruction cache of a modern CPU, explains Maxim Panchenko, …
Thomas Claburn, 19 Jun 2018

How to stealthily poison neural network chips in the supply chain

Computer boffins have devised a potential hardware-based Trojan attack on neural network models that could be used to alter system output without detection. Adversarial attacks on neural networks and related deep learning systems have received considerable attention in recent years due to the growing use of AI-oriented systems …
Thomas Claburn, 19 Jun 2018
A dude wearing a red hat

From here on, Red Hat's new GPLv2 software projects will have GPLv3 cure for license violators

Red Hat on Monday said all of its newly initiated open-source projects that adopt GPLv2 or LGPLv2.1 licenses will be expected to include the GPLv3 "cure" provision. The move follows Red Hat's announcement last November, in conjunction with Facebook, Google and IBM, that the four companies intended to extend the GPLv3 violation …
Thomas Claburn, 18 Jun 2018
c++ code

What's all the C Plus Fuss? Bjarne Stroustrup warns of dangerous future plans for his C++

Interview Earlier this year, Bjarne Stroustrup, creator of C++, managing director in the technology division of Morgan Stanley, and a visiting professor of computer science at Columbia University in the US, wrote a letter inviting those overseeing the evolution of the programming language to “Remember the Vasa!” Easy for a Dane to …
Thomas Claburn, 18 Jun 2018
Thumbs up for Spectre-Meltdown protection

Boffins offer to make speculative execution great again with Spectre-Meltdown CPU fix

A group of computer science researchers has proposed a way to overcome the security risk posed by speculative execution, the data processing technique behind the Spectre and Meltdown vulnerabilities. In a paper distributed this week through the ArXiv preprint server, "SafeSpec: Banishing the Spectre of a Meltdown with Leakage- …
Thomas Claburn, 16 Jun 2018
Google

G Suitened with helping of Google's App Maker

After a year and a half of gestation in its Early Adopter program, Google's low-code application development environment App Maker has been delivered into the hands of its corporate customers. App Maker allows G Suite Business, Education and Enterprise subscribers to create artisanal apps tied to searchzilla's cloud-based, G- …
Thomas Claburn, 15 Jun 2018
Image of woman holding mask of her own face

The eyes have it: 'DeepFakes' bogus AI-meddled videos outed by unblinking gaze

In the last year or so convincing fake videos known as DeepFakes – the product of deep learning-driven facial image manipulation – have been condemned as a threat to democracy, or what's left of it. The fear is that invented events represent the sort of fake news that can alter elections and affect civic engagement. Imagine …
Thomas Claburn, 14 Jun 2018
Docker CEO Steve Singh

Docker Hub security dissed, dodgy container image data damned

At DockerCon in San Francisco on Wednesday, CEO Steve Singh highlighted security as one of Docker's core principles. Only a day earlier, Germany-based security software development shop Kromtech suggested security wasn't a priority for the code containerizer. Over the past twelve months, Kromtech explained in a blog post, …
Thomas Claburn, 14 Jun 2018
Docker CEO Steve Singh

Docker seeks Golden State burnish for cloud container expansion

At its annual enthusiasm fest in San Francisco on Wednesday, software container popularizer Docker shifted from technical talk to evangelism with previews of product improvements and the usual Silicon Valley word salad about changing the world. Golden State Warriors "Hype Man" Franco Finn arrived on stage at DockerCon to …
Thomas Claburn, 13 Jun 2018
Facebook "Leave Feedback"

Facebook tells users to report crappy customer service from advertisers

Facebook may be hiring thousands of people to police content, but it's asking users to volunteer to monitor advertisers. The social media giant wants citizens of Facebookistan to report their experiences purchasing items pitched through Facebook or Instagram ads, so that it can encourage merchants to do better and block the …
Thomas Claburn, 12 Jun 2018
Arcady http://www.shutterstock.com/gallery-450076p1.html

Google plots death of inline installation for Chrome extensions

Google on Tuesday said it plans to discontinue inline installation of Chrome browser extensions, by which code on third-party websites can trigger the installation of extensions from the Chrome Web Store. The decision, which will be implemented in stages, follows a series of complaints in recent years about malicious …
Thomas Claburn, 12 Jun 2018
Bitcoin ban

Apple: No currency mining for you in our App Store thank you

Apple has revised its App Store rules to place restrictions on cryptocurrency mining, storage and payment across apps it distributes. The rules change coincides with the company's introduction of beta versions of its forthcoming iOS, macOS, tvOS and watchOS releases at its annual developer conference. It also comes as Wells …
Thomas Claburn, 11 Jun 2018
Money and gavel

Open Source Security hit with bill for defamation claim

Open Source Security, maker of the grsecurity Linux kernel patches, has been directed to pay Bruce Perens and his legal team almost $260,000 following a failed defamation claim. The security biz, and its president Brad Spengler, sued Perens last year over a blog post, alleging defamation. Perens, one of the early leaders in …
Thomas Claburn, 11 Jun 2018
drone

Hmmm, we can already seize your stuff, so why can't we shoot down your drone, officials mull

The US government is worried about its capacity for discrimination, at least with respect to drones. It wants to extend its military's right to seize, surveil, or intercept drones to civilian agencies, the FBI, and criminal prosecutors. Rather than let Uncle Sam's armed forces have all the fun, why not give federal busybodies …
Downdetector.com outage map

Comcast's mega-outage 'solution'... Have you tried turning your router off and on again?

Updated After a day without service, Comcast has suggested its business voice customers restart their modems if they're still having connectivity problems. The American comms giant has been trying to recover from a voice service outage that began on Wednesday morning and has affected customers in cities across the States. …
Cyber

'Vigilance' hacker charged over Minnesota government attacks

A 19-year-old who goes by the handle Vigilance online has been indicted in a Saint Paul, Minnesota district court for allegedly breaking into and interfering with servers operated by the state. Vigilance, identified by the US Attorney’s Office in Minnesota as Cameron Thomas Crowley, was charged by a grand jury on May 22 in a …
Cloud Pets toys

IoT CloudPets in the doghouse after damning security audit: Now Amazon bans sales

Amazon on Tuesday stopped selling CloudPets, a network-connected family of toys, in response to security and privacy concerns sounded by browser maker and internet community advocate Mozilla. The move follows similar actions taken by Walmart and Target last week. And other sellers of the toy are said to be considering similar …
Credits: NASA/Chris Gunn

NASA makes the James Webb Telescope a looker with a heart of gold

While the spaceship name Heart of Gold was taken by the late, great Douglas Adams, NASA has come up with something similar for its forthcoming space telescope. To capture incoming radiation, NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope will need to fend off outgoing radiation. The telescope, scheduled to launch in 2020 following several …

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