The Sizzle

Issue 259 - Friday, 21st October 2016 - Low Flying Panic Attack

I'm going to be in Sydney on the 1st of November and thought it's time for the first Sizzle Subscriber meetup! If you're in Sydney, come down to the Civic Hotel (corner of Pitt St & Goulburn St) after 5PM on the 1st of November and I'll be there nursing a pint of beer if you want to say hello. It's nothing formal, just a chance for me to meet the awesome people that give me $5/month for this thing. If you think you'll make it, post on the forum!


The Nintendo Switch
Nintendo unveiled the long rumoured "Project NX", now called, Switch. Here's the 3.5 minute first look video. The quickest way to describe the Nintendo Switch is that it's a dockable tablet with removable controllers. Watch the video, it'll make sense. It'll be out in March 2017. Inside the Switch is a customised Nvidia Tegra SoC - it's basically a tablet (that might not have a touch enabled screen) with extra bits to make it gaming friendly. I'm sure there will be lots of more into dribbled out ahead of its launch early next year. The Nintendo website hasn't got much besides a few pictures.

Dirty Cow Linux bug
There's a rather serious bug in the Linux kernel that allows anyone with local access to a machine to undertake a privilege escalation attack (i.e: a user logged in with fuck all permissions can exploit this bug to become a root user and do whatever they want on the system). CVE-2016-5195 (aka Dirty Cow) has been hanging around in the Linux kernel for years too, only now has it been patched. sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get -y upgrade && sudo reboot

The Kodak Ektra smartphone probably sucks
Someone has exhumed the Kodak brand, slapped it on a smartphone and is trying to pass it off as a product you should give them real money for. The Kodak Ektra is a smartphone that's main purpose to exist (beyond leveraging the Kodak brand to make money), is taking photos. It's basically a Chinaphone (uses a MediaTek SoC) with a good camera attached, an exterior that looks like an old camera and some built in photo editing software. There's even a retro looking leather "camera bag" for it. If this thing takes better photos than an iPhone 7 Plus or a Google Pixel, I'd be shocked.

Red Dead Redemption 2 teaser trailer looks nice
It's a good day for gamers. Civ 6! Nintendo Switch! Battlefield 1! And to top it all of, there's a trailer for Red Dead Redemption 2. It's pretty short and says fuck all about what's going on in the game. Looks nice though. I only mentioned it because almost every blog I follow mentioned it and it's my job to make sure you don't feel ambushed if someone mentions Red Dead Redemption 2 to you.

NBN wants to be AWS
At the Broadband World Forum in London last night, the NBN's CTO said that there's "early thinking" about providing compute and storage services, even though the government remit they have is simply to roll out residential and small business internet access. Reading between the lines here it sounds like NBN wants to take on Azure, AWS and Google! Why? Why do this? Concentrate on being a reliable, cheap and dumb pipe you morons. Have you got nothing else to do down there? I guess rolling out a half-arsed FTTN network leaves the other half of your arse to daydream about useless shit like this. Or maybe they'll just buy an Australian cloud hosting company for $800m and piss that away when they realise it's total ratshit? Farken hell.


Tesla teases us with a level 5 robocar video
Off the back of yesterday's Tesla announcement that they're gonna fill all their cars with loads of sensors to enabled fully autonomous driving, Elon Musk has uploaded a video of a Model S fitted out with all those fancy sensors, driving around on its own. The video shows a dude going from his home to the Tesla HQ without touching the wheel, then getting out of the car at the front door, then the car going out on its own to find somewhere to park. Pretty damn cool.

A new AFL video game is coming
There's an AFL game coming out soon (thanks for the heads up Pete) for the PS4 and Xbox One. It's made by Wicked Witch Software, who also made the AFL Live game that was on PS3, 360 and iOS. This new one wil be called AFL Evolution. Dunno when it will be out. The punters on Reddit don't have high expectations and neither do I. When will someone make a Football Manager equivalent for the AFL? I want that. I'd pay $10/month to play that.

Soccer video games are changing how soccer is played
The New York Times reckons the FIFA series of video games from EA have changed how real-life football is played. Players these days have grown up with the game and the younger ones coming through now as 18, 19, 20 year olds have had excellent versions of FIFA and Football Manager to play with. Naturally, the video game has imprinted on them techniques that are unique to PlayStation land that come out on the field at Emirates Stadium or the Camp Nou. I wish the same would be done with politicians and Civilization (and that's the end of this issue so now I can go play Civ 6!)

Here endeth the sizzle (until Monday!)

The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon. Today's subject line is from Burn The Witch, by Radiohead. Like The Sizzle? Tell your friends!