The Sizzle

Issue 356 - Tuesday, 21st March 2017


Poms whinging about their ads appearing on shitty YouTube channels
UK advertisers are pissed off that Google allowed ads for their companies to appear on YouTube videos belonging to Nazis and racists and generally awful people. They're so pissed off, that Google was asked by the UK government to explain why ads for various UK government departments were allowed to be published alongside "inappropriate content". So naive, so innocent, so unaware of how automated Google's ad system works. Do they think a little gnome inside everyone's computer decides what type of ad is to be shown where? Anyways, Google is gonna fix it, so calm down, your precious brands are safe.

Samsung's take on Siri is called Bixby, plus a bunch of other Galaxy S8 leaks
Samsung has its own Siri. They're calling it Bixby. Cool. Good for them. This is just one of the dozens of things leaked about the Galaxy S8 before its launch on March 29th (US time). We know what the S8 looks like, what colours it will come in, know how fast its SoC will be and even how much it will cost. What we don't know, is how often it will explode - one in every million or one in every thousand? *supreme shit eating iPhone fanboy grin*

AU government is making a system to verify you online
You should probably be familiar by now with the Digital Transformation Agency. They're part of the federal government and their job is to try and make government suck less at computers. One of their big projects is Govpass, a way for people to prove to government services, they are who they say they are. The DTA has announced that they've been building the system themselves, in-house, instead of outsourcing it. They're actually beta testing it now. Personal information, technology and the government - a perfect storm for a disaster. Let's pray to $deity that they don't fuck it up too hard.

Farmers upset over Fair Work's new smartphone app
The Fair Work Ombudsman released a nice app to track how often you work and creating a nice and tidy diary, for the inevitable day a casual worker's pleas to their boss to be paid properly, fall on deaf ears. You can then send that info to Fair Work to use in a dispute. It's actually a very nice app, I'm shocked a government department managed to do it. Anyway - the National Farmer's Federation has cracked the shits over it, because it'll highlight just how poorly they treat their slaves workers. The NSF person in the article even went as far to say that this app is tantamount to workers spying on their bosses, hahaha.

Apple doesn't pay tax in New Zealand
Australians love having a good whinge (justified) about how Apple pays relatively little tax in Australia, despite generating loads of profits off our stable society full of infrastructure that allows their product to thrive. Our mates across the Tasman have it even worse - Apple pays no tax at all there, it's all funnelled to Australia. Apple's sold $4.2b worth of gear in NZ since 2007 and paid exactly $0.00 in taxes. Of course, this is all legal and hundreds of multi-national companies do it. Everyone is just picking on Apple (also justified) because they're the most profitable company in the world.


Parallels Lite & Veertu - free virtual machine apps for macOS
Parallels Light is a free interface to macOS's built in hypervisor. Here's a list of the differences between Parallels Light and Parallels Desktop. It can run virtual machines using Linux or macOS for free and Windows for $90 via an in-app purchase (not worth it). If you just need something basic to run Linux on, this is a really good option and super easy - it downloads the OS for you, sets it up and plonks you in a desktop, ready to go. You can also use your own ISOs if ya want. Veertu is a another interface to macOS's hypervisor that will run Windows VMs for free.

Telstra's LTE network is very good
Cellular Insights test mobile phone radios and write blog posts about their testing, explaining what's going on while they do so. It's one of my favourite blogs! They're American, but they ended up in Sydney recently to try out the Netgear Nighthawk M1 on the Telstra network and they loved it. Cellular Insights were blown away at how a city like Sydney ended up with the world's fastest LTE and called it "a work of art". This is like Michael Schumacher saying "this is the best car I've ever driven" or Jimi Hendrix saying "this is the best guitar I've ever played" - big props to Telstra and Ericsson for their technical achievements. Shame our fixed line internet isn't so good though.

Very cheap Ubiquiti networking gear
I know I've crapped on about this eBay sale a fair bit the past few days, but it's really, really good and it ends tomorrow night. I wasn't going to mention it again, but today a whole bunch of Ubiquiti gear popped up and you know how much I love Ubiquiti stuff! The UniFi AP AC Pro is just $195.20 and the EdgeRouter X is $76.80 - this is the same wi-fi & router combo I use at home and have installed literally hundreds of for other people. Though, to be honest, a TP-Link Archer C7 for $139.20 is awesome unless you have a huge area to cover. If you can't run ethernet cables around your place, mesh wi-fi might help - the Amplifi HD kit with 2 extenders is just $480. Don't forget to use the code CYBER to actually get the 20% off and just another reminder, here's the list of all the stuff I've mentioned from the sale so far.

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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