The Sizzle

Issue 169 - Thursday, 16th June 2016 - It's Like, You Know, Gourmet


New electronic medical records system at Cairns Hospital isn't going well
Cairns hospital implemented an electronic medial records system and guess what? They fucked it up. Apparently the new electronic medical records system has cost the hospital so much money, that it's impacting on the hospitals budget and they're asking staff to use less pens and turn lights off in order to save money. Beyond the financial strain, the "Digital Hospital" software is so poor that clinical staff are cracking the shits with it. Tasks take way too long and this distracts from patient care. Just another example of the general ineptitude government has implementing any large scale IT system.

Facebook to reach out to users showing signs of committing suicide
Facebook is using its hoarde of personal info for possible good, by adding a "whoa shit this person might top themselves" option to the list of reasons to report a post and alerting a qualified team at Facebook to reach out to that person with some help. With over 70% of Americans using Facebook daily and the large amount of personal info people share on Facebook, this may actually have a serious impact on helping those who are driven to the point of contemplating suicide.

Android N gets a new developer preview
There's a new developer preview of Android N - the new upcoming version of Android expected for final release in a few months. It hasn't introduced any major new features, but has finalised some APIs so developers can start making their apps compatible with the new version. A full list of what's new in Android 7.0 is available to flick through on Android Authority.

SpaceX's rocket landing streak ends with crash of a Falcon 9
SpaceX had a rocket fail to land on its floating barge in the ocean this morning. A Falcon 9 rocket took off fine, chucked two satellites into orbit superbly, but failed to land as expected. Apparently it experienced "Rapid Unscheduled Disassembly" (i.e: it exploded) as it landed way too fast onto the barge, instead of a nice slow and gentle landing. Out of the 6 SpaceX launches in 2016, three have crashed on landing, whilst three were successful. Wikipedia has a full list of SpaceX rocket launches and their outcomes.

Kogan's IPO reveals some interesting financials about the retailer
Kogan, the electronics retailer we love to hate, has offered itself up for an IPO on the stock market and as part of that process, has opened up its books. An interesting fact discovered by CRN is that Kogan paid $2.6m for Dick Smith's "intellectual property" (it's website, mailing list, domain name - crap like that). This netted it 1.3m new email addresses it can contact. I thought that was interesting. Looks like an email addresses is worth about $2 to marketers in Australia, haha.


Cheap Xiaomi batteries again
If you still don't own a USB battery pack, there's some excellent pricing on genuine Xiaomi ones at Everbuying. My personal favourite, the 5000mAh slim unit is a meager USD$8.77. Requires a few hurdles to get that price - gotta sign up for an account to get 100 EverBuy points, then use the mobile site to get another discount, then apply the coupon to get the US$8.77 price. There's a 20000mAh unit available as well, if you're gonna be away from a power socket for a long time.

Simon Hackett chats with ABC radio about renewable energy, batteries and SA manufacturing
Simon Hackett has been on the radio chatting about Red Flow again, and given some perspective on how Australia, and particularly South Australia, can reap the spoils in the global transition to renewable energy. I always find it interesting that a bunch of tech people have found renewable energy so interesting. It's not like they were that fascinated with coal or gas power plants, but wind and solar and a couple of batteries and they're experts.

The hidden security threat that is Intel's AMT management system
Did you know there's a second computer inside your computer? Intel has shipped it with every one of their CPUs for the last few years. This little sub-computer inside the CPU is known as vPro or Intel ME or Intel AMT and is designed to allow mass management of a bunch of computers, even if the main operating system is broken, or even if they're turned "off". Sounds like a handy feature, right? Well it's actually a massive security flaw waiting to bite you in the arse. There's bugger all documentation on it and Intel shares virtually nothing about it with security researchers. Worst of all, it can't be disabled, or replaced, without permanently disabling the entire computer.

Here endeth the sizzle (until tomorrow!)

The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon. Like The Sizzle? Tell your friends!