Issue 671

Tuesday, 3rd July 2018

In This Issue


Some Samsung phones are sending out random pics to random people via SMS

People on Reddit and on the official Samsung forums are complaining that the Messages app on Samsung's Galaxy smartphones is sending out random photos to random contacts via SMS. That's right, it's Russian Roulette with your photo library and contact list! "The prevailing theory as to what's causing this bug is a weird interaction between Samsung Messages and recent RCS profile updates that have rolled out on carriers including T-Mobile. In Australia, the only carrier to support RCS is Telstra". To prevent this occurring, you can switch to a different default messaging app and go into the phone's settings to revoke Samsung Messages' permission to access storage.

Dell returns to the stock market & SUSE Linux has a new owner

Some news from corporate, enterprise, "you can't visit the customer's site without a suit mate", IT today. First up, Dell is going back on the stock market. A few years ago it was taken over by a private equity company, turned into a private company so it can rebuild its sorry self without the prying eyes of Wall Street. It then purchased EMC for tens of billions of dollars and is currently swallowing up VMware in a complicated financial manoeuvre that will see it use VMware's stock as a way to list itself on the market without doing an IPO or something - I don't understand. Second, old mate SUSE Linux (I honestly didn't know it was still a thing) was sold for US$2.5b to a Swedish buyout group called EQT partners. EQT claims it will invest more into engineering to get a leg up over its chief rival Red Hat, particularly since many companies are reluctant to rely on a US company like Red Hat and may prefer an EU company like SUSE.

The Global Talent Scheme Visa is now a thing AU startups can use

Hey startup founders, there's a new visa you can exploit to make a quick buck - the Global Talent Scheme! Designed as a replacement for the controversial overhaul of 457 visas, the GTS allows the recipient to stay in Australia for 4 years with and includes a pathway to permanent residency, without the job needing to be on the skilled occupation lists. To use the GTS, you have to be an "eligible startup", with a bunch of financial conditions plus be "approved by the government's startup authority" that is "made out of industry representatives that will assess applicants and decide whether they are legitimate startups" - but nobody knows who that startup authority is yet or what criteria they'll use to determine if your startup is legit. Classic government half-arsed thought bubble.

Facebook sends Moves, Hello & tbh out to pasture because we didn't love them enough

Facebook's snuffed out a bunch of apps I didn't even know existed and some I knew of, but didn't know were owned by Facebook. Hello, some lame chat/voice app it launched in 2015 for people in Brazil, the US and Nigeria - gone. Moves, a fitness app that records daily activity that Facebook purchased back in 2014 and was quite nice on iOS - gone. TBH (to be honest), "an anonymous social media app for high school students in the US" Facebook acquired less than a year ago - gone. Why did Facebook remove these beautiful apps from the face of the earth? Not enough people were using them. They probably had loads of users, but unless something has 500m people using it, Facebook probably isn't interested.

Busted DHS ERP software now has a busted report into why the ERP software is busted

The Commonwealth Department of Human Services is really, really struggling to replace its ERP software it calls "Cuba", which is responsible for child support payments for over 1.2m kids and handles $3.2b of payments a year. Cuba is 16 years old and marked as EOL in 2009, yet it still persists in DHS because the new system "Pluto" is a piece of shit. Deloitte was enlisted back in November 2017 to assess how to move forward in replacing Cuba and has just been given an extra $500k on top of the $500k is got last year to finish its review. So not only is DHS' IT system itself busted, the report into how to fix the IT system is fucked too. Government IT, love it.

Not News, But Still Cool

What happens when you type into your browser's address box and press enter?

When I hear an engineer or a scientist talk in insane detail about the weird and wonderful things they build and discover, I get insanely jealous and wish I knew something in that sort of detail. Then I remember I understand pretty much exactly how the internet and computers work and that's not something most people know. If you want to know how the internet works, down to the tiniest detail, you should read this Github document that outlines what happens when you enter in your browser and shit appears on the screen. Now you can bore people at parties too!

What happened to the 3D printing fad?

A few years ago, excited nerds were talking about how 3D printing was gonna change everything. Every home was gonna own a 3D printer! It sounded amazing, so what happened? This Wired article explores the rise and fall of MakerBot as they tried to achieve the goal of a 3D printer in every home. The fact is, squirting hot plastic like an ink-jet printer isn't the best way to make stuff people want and creating 3D models is nowhere near as simple as say, word processing or even 2D image editing in Photoshop. The industry is evolving rapidly, but there won't be Star Trek style replicators for us any time soon.

Cheap PC & Console games, GTX1080 GPU, Xiaomi battery, Ring doorbell, Samsung S9, 2TB ext HDD, 120GB SSD, PS4 controller

That's it, see ya tomorrow!

The Angels - Take a Long Line