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Jan "Starbug" Krissler, the Chaos Computer Club researcher who broke the fingerprint reader security on the new Iphone, had given a long interview to Zeit Online explaining his process and his thoughts on biometrics in general. The CCC's Alex Antener was good enough to translate the interview for us; I've included some of the most interesting bits after the jump.

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An anonymous reader sends this news from Al-Jazeera:
"BP has been accused of hiring internet 'trolls' to purposefully attack, harass, and sometimes threaten people who have been critical of how the oil giant has handled its disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. The oil firm hired the international PR company Ogilvy & Mather to run the BP America Facebook page during the oil disaster, which released at least 4.9 million barrels of oil into the Gulf in what is to date the single largest environmental disaster in U.S. history. The page was meant to encourage interaction with BP, but when people posted comments that were critical of how BP was handling the crisis, they were often attacked, bullied, and sometimes directly threatened. ... BP's 'astroturfing' efforts and use of 'trolls' have been reported as pursuing users' personal information, then tracking and posting IP addresses of users, contacting their employers, threatening to contact family members, and using photos of critics' family members to create false Facebook profiles, and even threatening to affect the potential outcome of individual compensation claims against BP."

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By THE NEW YORK TIMES

With more people reading the Times on smart phones, you can now experience Lens on the New York Times iPad/iPhone or Android app.

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Aaron Souppouris

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Security researchers have discovered a way to push software onto an iOS device using a modified charger. The team at Georgia Institute of Technology says its charger was able to upload arbitrary software to an iOS device within one minute of it being plugged in. According to the researchers, "all users" are at risk, as the hack doesn't require any user interaction. Hackers are even capable of hiding the applications, so they don't show up in the device's app list. It's not clear if the charger is able to upload malicious code — Apple's iOS devices, by default, are "sandboxed" and will only install and run properly signed apps — but this is a worrying development regardless.

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Jeff Blagdon

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The charitable work of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation was the focus of the Microsoft founder’s recent 60 Minutes interview with Charlie Rose, but the longtime richest man in the world got emotional when the conversation turned to friend and rival Steve Jobs. When asked what the pair talked about during their final meeting at the Jobs home in May of 2011, Gates welled up, saying, “what we’d learned, families… anything.” He later went on to say that he and the Apple founder "practically grew up together."

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samzenpus

An anonymous reader writes "There's a persistent bias against older programmers in the software development industry, but do the claims against older developers' hold up? A new paper looks at reputation on StackOverflow, and finds that reputation grows as developers get older. Older developers know about a wider variety of technologies. All ages seem to be equally knowledgeable about most recent programming technologies. Two exceptions: older developers have the edge when it comes to iOS and Windows Phone."

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Aaron Souppouris

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Chinese pirate site 7659 is exploiting Apple's bulk enterprise licensing tools to distribute free versions of paid App Store applications. Bulk enterprise licensing is supposed to let businesses send in-house apps to employees without dealing with Apple's App Store. It works via a developer provisioning profile, which facilitates "sideloading" of sorts without jailbreaking.

The site is only open to users in China, but that restriction can be circumvented via proxy server. According to VentureBeat, 7659 is full of apps that would otherwise cost money. Those include our best new app last week, Badland, which is usually $3.99, and Final Fantasy V, priced at $15.99 in the App Store. In a statement on its site, Kuaiyong, the company that...

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Soulskill

SternisheFan sends in an article about the new features and developments we can expect out of smartphones in the near future. The shortlist: more sensors for tracking the world outside the phone, more gesture-based (i.e. non-touch) input, and integration with wearable computers like smartwatches and Google Glass. From the article: "These under-appreciated components -- the gyroscope, accelerometer, magnetometer, and so forth -- are starting to get more friends in the neighborhood. Samsung, for instance, slipped pressure, temperature, and humidity sniffers into the Galaxy S4. They may not be the sexiest feature in your phone, but in the future, sensors like accelerometers will be able to collect and report much more detailed information. ... In addition to air quality, temperature and speed of movement are also biggies. [Also, a smartphone that can] track your pulse, or even double as an EKG, turning the everyday smartphone into a medical device. ... [For wearable computing,] your smartphone is still there, still essential for communicating with your environment, but it becomes only one device in a collection of other, even more personal or convenient gadgets, that solve some of the same sorts of problems in different or complementary ways." What do you think will be the next generation of killer features for smartphones?

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Casey Johnston


All the bits and pieces that go into a pair of virtual reality goggles.

iFixit

iFixit posted a teardown of the Oculus Rift headset Wednesday to see what, exactly, the virtual reality headset is made of. The teardown reveals the types of screens and controllers the Oculus Rift uses, and though the score is preliminary, iFixit gave it a 9 out of 10 user repairability score—unusual in the glue, tape, and Torx screw times we now live in.

The Oculus Rift uses one 1280×800 LCD that is split down the middle to show one image each to the right and left eye to create a 3D image. The display is an Innolux HJ070IA-02D 7-inch LCD panel, provided by the same distributor rumored to be Apple’s source for replacement iPad mini screens. A custom-designed Oculus Tracker V2 board pings to track the headset's motion at a 1000Hz refresh rate.

The chips inside the device include an STMicroelectronics 32F103C8 Cortex-M3 microcontroller with a 72MHz CPU and an Invensense MPU-6000 six-axis motion tracking controller that has both a gyroscope and accelerometer. There is also a chip named A983 2206, which iFixit suspects is a “three-axis magnetometer, used in conjunction with the accelerometer to correct for gyroscope drift.”

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Megan Rose Dickey

clear to do list app

Apple's iOS platform is typically the first choice for app developers.

While Android is right behind iOS in terms of developer preference, according to a December report from Appcelerator and IDC, it still lacks some popular apps. 

Some of these iPhone-exclusive apps have recently launched, meaning that there's still hope for Android users. But some apps, like the Infinity Blade fighting game franchise, have been around for a couple of years and have no plans to launch on Android. 

Still, that doesn't mean Apple's App Store will always be the first choice for developers. 

Even though Apple is the leader in app revenue, Google Play is growing at a faster rate, according to a recent App Annie report. In fact, Google Play seems to be on track to hit one million apps in June, months before Apple, Dan Rowinski of ReadWrite recently predicted

Meanwhile, Android is dominating consumer smartphone sales with a nearly 70 percent market share compared to iOS' 20 percent.

Clear makes managing your to-do list a breeze

Clear is a very simple, yet aesthetically pleasing to-do list app that helps you stay on task. With Clear, you can create multiple to-do lists: one for work, one for your personal life, etc. 

In order to use the app, there are few gestures you need to know: pull down to add a task, swipe to the left to delete a task, swipe to the right to check an item off the list, pinch apart two tasks to add a new one, and pinch vertically to exit out of the current list. 

Price: $1.99

Fantastical is a beautiful calendar app

Fantastical puts Apple's built-in calendar app to shame. It pulls in data from the built-in calendar, but you can also add other calendars.

The app makes it super easy to see your entire calendar and appointments for any given day. It also has a pretty nifty day ticker where you can quickly see your schedule for the day and the rest of the week. 

Price: $4.99

Tweetbot is one of the most robust Twitter clients out there today

Tweetbot is a full-fledged Twitter client that is super customizable and packed with tons of shortcuts to enhance your Twitter experience.

With the multiple timelines feature, you can momentarily block out the rest of Twitter and just read tweets from people on a specific Twitter list. 

Tweetbot also recently updated the app with inline Vine and Flickr previews. 

Price: $2.99

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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