The Sizzle

Issue 471 - Monday, 3rd September 2017


Bug in Instagram exposes personal info of celbs
A bunch of hackers figured out that a bug in Instagram was able to expose user's private contact info such as email addresses and phone numbers. Some enterprising individuals even set up a website called Doxagram where you can buy someone's personal info for US$10. Celebrities were impacted - celebrities!!! Selena Gomez, Emma Watson, Leonardo DiCaprio, Victoria Beckham, Snoop Dogg and Zinedine Zidane are just a few of the famous people who had their details exposed. Instagram's come out and said the bug's now fixed, so don't worry about it and keep on posting inspirational quotes, photos of fancy meals, 3 second video loops of animals doing funny things and undisclosed paid product promotion. Oh and some Instagram employees were (still are?) taking cash on the side to verify accounts that shouldn't really be verified.
Discuss - Share

2900 Bitcoin ATMs to be rolled out across Australia
Over 2900 of those crappy fee charging ATMs in servos, pubs and no-name convenience stores across Australia will soon handle Bitcoin. A joint venture between StarGroup and DigitalX will roll out software updates to the ATMs that'll allow people to buy Bitcoin via their debit card and to sell Bitcoin for AUD that's dispensed as sheets of plastic backed by the Reserve Bank of Australia. Right now there's only 16 Bitcoin ATMs around the country, so this is a huge boost for anyone looking to launder their drug money or waste their live savings on the digital equivalent of 1600's Dutch tulips. By the way, Bitcoin is still trading at around US$4600 a pop. All those forks and community in-fighting hasn't slowed the hype train down.
Discuss - Share

Windows 10 Fall Creators Update drops on Oct 17
The Windows 10 Fall Creators Update (version 1709) will hit your computer October 17. The fourth version of Windows 10 will include hundreds of tweaks as well as some new features. I won't go over each individual feature here, there's a good list in the linked ZDNet article and this Windows Central page. Here's what I reckon are some of the more interesting features though: Windows Mixed Reality, OneDrive Files on Demand, built-in eye tracking, a taste of Microsoft's Fluent Design system (which I wish they'd use to totally overhaul the Windows UI with) and finally, Windows will throttle background tasks so they don't drain your battery if they aren't doing anything important. I might get a bit more life out of my Thinkpad's lazy battery now!
Discuss - Share

You can stop laughing now, Juicero is dead
Juicero, the laughing stock of the tech/startup/IoT/entrepreneur/business world, is no longer. Despite raising $120m from some of the most respected venture capitalists in the valley, the US$400 machine that squeezed expensive bags of juice into a glass, surprisingly didn't take off in the 16 months it was around. Apparently that $120m just wasn't enough money to "create an effective manufacturing and distribution system for a nationwide customer base", so Juicero is now looking for a buyer to take over its mission of ripping off rich people who want a glass of juice. Its founder is having a ball at Burning Man though and is the epitome of not giving a fuck.
Discuss - Share

Google suddenly shuts down an anti-monopoly research group it was funding
A think-tank in the USA (The New America Foundation) had a research group within it called Open Markets. The New America Foundation receives lots of funding from Google to do its thing. The Open Markets team, amongst its research into corporate monopolies, started praising the EU's recent decision to fine Google over its price-comparison practices. A few days later, the Open Markets team was kicked out of The New America Foundation. What a coincidence! What confuses me is why would a nice company like Google want to silence those doing research into monopolies? Seems like such an odd thing for a company that may own over 80% of the internet advertising market to take a stand against. Very, very odd.
Discuss - Share


Video reviews of electric cars I wish I could buy
Here's two great reviews on two great electric cars. First is a nice overview of the Chevrolet Bolt, which can do ~300km, for in some places of the USA, under US$30,000. Then there's a review of the Volkswagen e-Golf, which looks and feels just like a regular VW Golf, but is a full EV that'll do ~200km. Neither of these cars are ever coming to Australia, so admire them from afar in these videos. If you liked those, here's video reviews I've linked to before of the Hyundai Ioniq and Renault Zoe ZE40, which actually are coming to Australia some time this year. Maybe. It's frustratingly difficult to get info out of these car companies about EVs in Australia.
Discuss - Share

Hey dingus, don't post pics of your boarding pass online
Brian Krebs has yet another reminder about why you shouldn't go posting your airline boarding pass on the internet. "Working from a British Airways boarding pass that a friend posted to Instagram, Špaček found he could log in to the airline’s passenger reservations page using the six-digit booking code and the last name of the passenger. Once inside his friend’s account, Špaček saw he could cancel future flights, and view or edit his friend’s passport number, citizenship, expiration date and date of birth." Perfect way to ruin someone you hate's holiday. Airlines really have no timeline, or even motivation to make this stuff more secure, so in the meantime, just don't post ya plane tickets online yeah?
Discuss - Share

Cheap 65" TV, Nest Cams, RX580 GPUs and Rode mics
Some neat stuff up on OzBargain today: iPhone SE 32GB for $369 via Singapore. Local stock of Nest Cams have already come down in price over at iSelect, they're now $250 instead of $319. Aldi is selling a 65" 4K TV for $797. It goes on sale on the 16th of September. Looks like i-Tech are taking pre-orders of the AMD RX580 GPU for only $315+shipping. That's actually what these GPUs should cost. Great card for a Civ6 rig I reckon. eBay still has a 20% off sale going on (use code PICKUP20) with some nice audio gear for your next project around like the Rode smartLav+ for $47.20, Rode PSA1 mic boom arm for $87.20, a PSM1 shock mount for $39.20, Rode Podcaster mic for $164 or a RodeLink wireless lapel mic kit for $332.
Discuss - Share

Here endeth the sizzle (until tomorrow!)

The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon. Join us on Slack and chat with other Sizzle subscribers. Know someone who could use a bit of Sizzle in their life? Buy them a gift subscription!