The Sizzle

Issue 347 - Wednesday, 8th March 2017


WikiLeaks dumps loads of CIA documents about how they hack the world
WikiLeaks has dumped thousands of CIA documents outlining how the world's foremost clandestine operation goes about its computer related operations - the dump is called Vault7. A group within the CIA has the job of collecting and making thousands of trojans, viruses, malware and other bits of computer code that allows the USA to fight in the cyberwars. All their shit got handed to WikiLeaks. Dunno who did it and dunno why, but it's alllll out there now. The WikiLeaks editors at least didn't include the code to these programs. Imagine the shitshow if the CIA's treasure chest of hacks got out in the wild! Expect to hear a lot more about this as people trawl through the data WikiLeaks has published.

NBN talks up "skinny fibre" yet has no plans to actually use it
The NBN's chief network engineering officer, Peter Ryan, is going around saying it's pretty easy to change FTTN areas to FTTC thanks to "skinny fibre". Excellent! Roll that fibre out baby, let's get rid of FTTN so that we can have loads more FTTC! Nah, not so fast, that'll take, according to Peter, about 18 months to implement and "the NBN is like an enormously long train; you can't just bring things to a complete stop and change direction, it just doesn't work that way and never will." *cough* 2013 election *cough*, fuckwits. Meanwhile, the OECD reckons the NBN's FTTN approach will and is, holding Australia back.

ZTE slapped with a US$1.19b fine for selling stuff in Iran and North Korea
ZTE, a huge Chinese company that primarily makes smartphones and mobile network gear (pretty much like Huawei) has been fined US$1.19b for violating US trade sanctions. It is illegal to sell American made tech in countries the USA declares as naughty, such as Iran and North Korea, but ZTE did it anyways. ZTE would buy US made components (i.e: Qualcomm and Intel), install them in their products and sell them, fully aware that the USA really doesn't like it when that happens.

Android will soon overtake Windows as the most used operating system
StatCounter, some web analytics company put out a press release saying that Android is a bee's dick away from becoming the most used computer operating system. As of Feb 2017, 37.4% of devices StatCounter came across used Android and 38.6% use Windows. Well there ya go, butter my arse and call me a pigeon. If you had any doubt that tablets and smartphones are eating the lunch of classic, old school, hard working, and honest desktop computers, well you're a goddamn moron now aren't you?

Post to Wordpress from Google Docs, ugh
People too afraid of using the WYSIWYG Wordpress interface, can now use Google Docs to construct their incoherent blog posts and have them appear on a Wordpress blog. Install a plugin in Wordpress (ya need JetPack too), install an extension in Chrome and voila, the two will link up in an unholy matrimony. We shouldn't be making it this easy for people to share their thoughts. It's bad enough they have Facebook.


Koreans really hate ActiveX
ActiveX isn't a thing I've given a brain cell of thought to until I saw this thing on Twitter about it being a topic of discussion in the upcoming Korean presidential election. Apparently, in the land that gives us advanced tech companies like Samsung and LG, ActiveX is such a scourge on e-commerce sites, that a presidential candidate (that might actually win) Moon Jae-In, has said that he will abolish its use on government run websites. ActiveX doesn't work on Android or iOS, or Mac, or Linux and barely works in Windows 10 - so understandably, Koreans are getting pissed off when they're constantly asked to install an ActiveX plugin, requiring the use of a shitty old PC instead of their shiny new smartphone.

A Kim Dotcom doco coming soon
Here's a trailer for the documentary/movie about Kim Dotcom's trouble with the USA. Looks like a good watch I reckon. Kim Dotcom is such a weird unit. He's a gun at online gaming - was (I think still is?) the #1 ranked player on CoD Modern Warfare 3 and now is balls deep in some Bitcoin scam. His website and YouTube channel are wild. I kinda like him. Mainly because the USA copyright cabal hates him so much. The enemy of my enemy is my friend, or something. The movie will have its premiere at SXSW next week, dunno when it'll be available to download off BitTorrent for free.

Good price on some quality gear to start podcasting with
If you wanna get in on some podcasting action (why not? every dickhead has a podcast these days, even me), you can get 10% off Rode mics on eBay from Soundcorp. I love Rode gear because it's Aussie designed *and* made, as well as top notch quality and excellent value for money. Get a Rode Podcaster USB mic, the appropriate shockmount and a boom arm and you'll be 100% pro level podcaster - or at least look like one - for $325 delivered. Just use the code C10AU. This stuff would work well for Twitch streaming too, if you're into that sort of thing.

Here endeth the sizzle (until tomorrow!)

The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon. Like The Sizzle? Like it on Facebook!

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