Episode 554 – Aussie Tech Heads Shownotes

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Microsoft to bring Edge browser to Apple iOS and Android devices

Edge on iOS and Android allows users to sync browsing across PC and mobile, said Joe Belfiore, corporate vice president, Windows and Devices,

 

He said that “what makes Microsoft Edge really stand out is the ability to continue on your PC, which enables you to immediately open the page you’re looking at right on your PC—or save it to work on later”.

This ‘Continue on PC’ functionality will be part of the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update, due 17 October.

 

Canalys boss Steve Brazier says Microsoft’s Surface range is in big trouble

Canalys CEO Steve Brazier said Microsoft’s CEO Satya Nadella is a “software guy, a cloud guy”, meaning the company’s tablet and laptop range is likely to go the same way as its smartphone division.

The Surface range, he said, would be “the first target” in an apparently inevitable cost-cutting effort to reverse this low-margin hardware trend.

 

As for when the Surface line is likely to meet its end, Lanci suggested 2019 at the latest.

 

Canalys is a leading global technology market analyst firm with a distinct channel focus. We provide vendors with unique insight and intelligence through superior analysis services, custom research, and our innovative partner community and events

 

Amazon welcomes teens with new parent-controlled shopping allowance

launching Wednesday in the US which lets parents manage—and fund—online-shopping accounts for their teens.

 

When parents create an account, tied to payment methods of their choice, they can invite up to four teen users to create unique logins and download the Amazon shopping app to their own devices.

 

The teens get free rein to shop around—to a point. How much a teen is allowed to spend and what they buy can be, but doesn’t have to be, parent-regulated

 

Bug Allowed Google Home Mini Speakers to Record Everything

Some were listening to everything, recording it all, and transmitting the audio back to Google’s servers.

 

Home Mini speakers recorded all sounds due to a fault with the touch sensor on the top of the device, though Google has since issued a software patch to stop the constant recording.

 

Apparently the touch sensor fault is limited to Home Mini speakers given out at Made by Google events, or about 4,000 devices

 

Further information for those affected can be found on this Google Support page. It advises that if you apply the software update and still experience a problem, Google will send out a replacement Home Mini to you.

 

Unsent text message OK as valid will, says Australian court

A 55-year-old man who took his own life a year ago had addressed the phone text message to his brother.

“You and (nephew) keep all that I have house and superannuation, put my ashes in the back garden … (wife) will take her stuff only she’s OK gone back to her ex AGAIN I’m beaten. A bit of cash behind TV and a bit in the bank Cash card pin … My will”

The message, which included detailed banking information and a request to bury his ashes at a specific site, was found by a friend who was searching through the dead man’s phone for clues.

According to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, the Supreme Court in Brisbane has now declared the text message to be a valid will.

The judge made the ruling after the dead man’s wife applied to manage her late husband’s estate, arguing the text message was not valid as it was never actually sent.

But Brown found the use of the words “my will” and the detailed references to his superannuation and property indicated he was fully aware of what he was doing.

Justice Susan Brown said the wording of the text message, which ended with the words “my will”, showed that the man intended it to act as his will.

“The reference to his house and superannuation and his specification that the applicant was to take her own things indicates he was aware of the nature and extent of his estate, which was relatively small,” she said.

She said the “informal nature” of the message did not stop it representing the man’s intentions, especially as it was “created on or about the time that the deceased was contemplating death, such that he even indicated where he wanted his ashes to be placed”.

Validity of wills

In 2006, the law in Queensland was changed to allow less formal types of documents to be considered as a will.

Another unusual will accepted in Queensland includes a DVD marked with “my will”, in 2013.

**** dont you have to be of sound mind? Are you in sound mind if your about to kill yourself ?

******who’s to say that someone didnt type it? Or it must have been saved as draft or not touched since the death? Maybe police found it?

NBN Co to start charging for ‘no fault found’ callouts

NBN Co will begin charging retail service providers it if sends technicians out to investigate a potential network fault but no fault is found.

NBN Co has to date waived the fees.

no fault found service management charging” is scheduled for introduction in the second quarter of 2018.

NBN Co charges a ‘labour rate’ for a minimum of two hours work for any truck roll where no fault is found.

The labour rate is $75.00 per hour or part thereof for non-satellite services and $98.00 for satellite services.

*** so I expect if no fault found that the if your paying for 2 hours then he should stay and talk or whatever for 2 hours.

AusPost creates Shipster service for online orders

Australia Post is trialling a subscription-based delivery service for online purchases with around 40 local retailers, including Myer, Target and Harvey Norman Toys R Us, Kogan and Booktopia..

The service, called Shipster, requires users to pay an initial fee of $9.95 – and then $6.95 a month from next year – to qualify for free shipping on orders lodged with the participating retailers.

From now until January 1 you can sign up

 

purchases: they must be over $25 and the postage fees being waived are capped at $20, which means large, heavy items would not qualify.

 

Australia Post is currently limiting Shipster sign-ups to residents of Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane metropolitan areas.

 

There is also an overall limit on how much any Shipster user can buy: “no more than 60 transactions may be made using your Shipster account in any three-month period

 

AusPost warns further that it will “generally consider that more than 160 individual transactions in a 12-month period would constitute excessive use”.

 

Users of the service would need to enter their email address at the e-commerce checkout to confirm they were Shipster members and, therefore, qualify for free shipping.

 

**** how are they going to make money off that – even at $10 per month, x 12, $120 per year and can do up to around 160 free deliveries.

**** not known if retailers subsise

**** it is only a trial

**** getting ahead of amazone prime who has premium free shipping

**** economies of scale ?

 

 

Dow Jones: ‘Google acquires Apple’ news was ‘error’

 

A bombshell appeared on the Dow Jones financial newswire on Tuesday: “Google to buy Apple for $9bn”.

the story, that the acquisition had been suggested in the will of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, was bogus.

It was removed after two minutes, though Apple’s shares did briefly rise in value.

Dow Jones said the news appeared as the result of a “technical error” and should be ignored.

The unintentionally published fake news described the acquisition as “a surprise move to everyone who is alive” and quoted Google employees as saying “Yay”.

It also stated that Google would move into “Apple’s fancy headquarters”.

A statement from the firm, which is owned by News Corp, said the headlines were published between 09:34 and 09:36 New York time following a technical error.

“All of those headlines are being removed from the wires.

“We apologise for the error.”

The incident occurred during a technology test, according to a statement from Dow Jones chief executive William Lewis.

 

SHAYNE – 12/10/17

iOS code expert shows devastating potential of simple iPhone phishing attack

  • APPLE users are being warned about a potential iPhone phishing attack which could be used to steal their credit card and personal details in just seconds.
  • The phishing scam looks like the familiar Apple ID pop-up
  • It’s not believed such a phishing scam is currently in the wild
  • Apple iOS code researcher Felix Krause has demonstrated just how simple it is to create a fake Apple ID login form
  • In a blog post this week he showed how he could “easily get the user’s Apple ID password
  • Can you tell the difference between the real pop-up and the phishing attack above?

HOW TO PROTECT YOURSELF

  • According to Mr Krause, if you’re presented with a pop-up you think might be dubious, hit the home button and the app & dialogue should quit if it was a phishing scam
  • However if the dialogue box and the app are still visible, then it’s a legitimate system prompt from Apple. “The reason for that is that the system dialogues run on a different process, and not as part of any iOS app.”

PornHub users infected with nasty virus spread by cyber crooks

  • Porn watchers have been urged to check their computers immediately after “millions” of online porn viewers were infected by a piece of malware called Kovter.
  • Researchers from the tech firm Proofpoint said that visitors to the wildly popular website PornHub are being tricked into downloading files which then infect their computer.
  • This malware is known as a “malvertising” attack because it works to spread more dodgy adverts designed to snare other victims.
  • The malware is capable of infecting all three major Windows web browsers: Chrome, Firefox, and Microsoft Edge/Internet Explorer.
  • Mark James, a security specialist at a tech firm called ESET, said that porn was a great way of spreading dodgy viruses.
  • Higher success rate of infection due to people being less tech savvy & not reporting it given where it came from.

 

PayPal to fund ‘yes’ campaign for marriage equality in Australia, launches donation-matching scheme

 

JASON

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https://tech.slashdot.org/story/17/10/11/2134236/google-will-hit-100-percent-renewable-energy-this-year

Google has announced that after 10 years a carbon-neutral company, it will be able to brag running on entirely renewable energy at the end of 2017. That means that all of the electricity the company consumes in both its data centers and offices are provided by wind and solar energy. Announced in Google’s 2017 environmental report, Google says it has created “new energy purchasing models that others can follow” and that “we’ve helped drive wide-scale global adoption of clean energy.” In addition to being an obvious PR boon, the company says its mission of full sustainability fits in with its larger mission. (It also makes the fact that as recently as 2015 Google alone reportedly consumed as much energy as the entire city of San Francisco in a year way more palatable.)

 

One step the company has recently taken in marrying its ethos of sustainability with its products is a new initiative to equip Google Street View vehicles with air quality sensors. In addition to its goal of being run by renewable energy, Google is also working on achieving zero waste to landfill. Nearly half of the company’s 14 data centers have already reached this goal, according to Google executive Urs Holzle’s 2017 Google Environmental report released on Tuesday.

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https://yro.slashdot.org/story/17/10/11/1810233/moscow-has-turned-kaspersky-antivirus-software-into-a-global-spy-tool-using-it-to-scan-computers-for-secret-us-data

The Russian government used a popular antivirus software to secretly scan computers around the world for classified U.S. government documents and top-secret information, modifying the program to turn it into an espionage tool (could be paywalled), according to current and former U.S. officials with knowledge of the matter. The software, made by the Moscow-based company Kaspersky Lab, routinely scans files of computers on which it is installed looking for viruses and other malicious software. But in an adjustment to its normal operations that the officials say could only have been made with the company’s knowledge, the program searched for terms as broad as “top secret,” which may be written on classified government documents, as well as the classified code names of U.S. government programs, these people said. The Wall Street Journal reported last week that Russian hackers used Kaspersky’s software in 2015 to target a contractor working for the National Security Agency, who had removed classified materials from his workplace and put them on his home computer, which was running the program. The hackers stole highly classified information on how the NSA conducts espionage and protects against incursions by other countries, said people familiar with the matter. But the use of the Kaspersky program to spy on the U.S. is broader and more pervasive than the operation against that one individual, whose name hasn’t been publicly released, current and former officials said.

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https://tech.slashdot.org/story/17/10/11/1734234/facebook-announces-199-oculus-go-standalone-vr-headset

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg officially announced the new product during his keynote speech at Facebook’s fourth Oculus Connect virtual reality (VR) developer conference in San Jose, Calif. Wednesday, where he framed the device as an important step towards bringing VR to the masses. “We want to get a billion people in virtual reality,” Zuckerberg said. Facebook VP of VR Hugo Barra said that the company developed custom lenses for the headset, which allow for a wide field of view. The display is a fast-switch LCD screen with a resolution of 2560×1440 pixels, and it comes with integrated headphones. The company will be shipping first headsets to developers in November.

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https://www.gizmodo.com.au/2017/10/google-home-mini-pixel-buds-australian-price-release-date/

With all the glitz of Google’s October event last week focusing on the new Pixel 2 phone, it was easy to miss two other announcements: a new miniature Google Home speaker called the Home Mini (and a big one called the Max), and a pair of Bluetooth earphones called the Pixel Buds that pack in some Google Assistant AI smarts.

The Google Home Mini, just like the name implies, is a smaller version of the Google Home smart speaker — instead of a vaguely cylindrical candle shape, it’s a flatter hockey puck. In all honesty, for me, it isn’t the sound quality of the Google Home that attracts me to it, but its smarts. Having that smart voice recognition in a smaller, cheaper speaker is a good thing — because I can put them in more rooms of my house.

The new Home Mini speaker will be available in all three Chalk, Charcoal and Coral colourways (the case is nonremovable) for $79 in Australia, with shipping starting in 2-3 weeks. That late October date is not far off Google’s own suggestion of October 19 on-sale in the US.

The new Pixel Buds are the first headphones that Google has made, and they distinguish themselves with deep integration to the Google Assistant — tap and hold the right earbud to launch the Assistant. Google’s talking that up particularly for its voice translation capabilities — you can ask the Buds to help you speak Japanese, for example, and any words you speak while you’re wearing the earbuds will be projected from your smartphone’s speaker in the translated language of your choice. Really cool, huh?

Available in Just Black, Clearly White and Kinda Blue to match the new Pixel 2 smartphones, the Pixel Buds will set you back $249 in Australia — about the going price for any truly wireless earbuds, to be fair. At the moment the Pixel Buds are only available to those that join a waitlist on Google’s device store website, with sales expected to start in November.

 

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