In This Issue


Apple contractors might be listening in to your Siri conversations

An Apple contractor has had a chat to The Guardian, saying that they "regularly hear confidential medical information, drug deals, and recordings of couples having sex, as part of their job providing quality control, or “grading”, the company's Siri voice assistant". Apparently they'd hear these things due to Siri "misfires", which is when Siri is activated by accident via a similar sound to "Hey Siri". Google and Amazon have also had similar revelations of people listening to the audio their voice assistants record. Apple, like the others, have said the snippets are anonymous and used to make Siri better. What did you expect would happen?

ACT police dramatically under-reported how often metadata was inappropriately accessed

Last week I mentioned that the ACT police inappropriately accessed federal metadata collected by telcos 116 times. Late on Friday afternoon they revised that figure to 3,249! These all happened in a relatively short period of time, 11th March 2015 to 13th October 2015. None of the data accessed was used in evidence or handed to a 3rd party, but that's not the point. The point is the blatant disregard for the metadata system's processes and regulations. Police just see this giant trove of private information on innocent people as a personal database to access whenever and whenever they like and that's not how it's supposed to be used.

Gadi will be Australia’s newest and fastest supercomputer later this year

Australia's scientists are getting a new supercomputer. It'll be called Gadi and built by Fujitsu for $70m. Gadi will be made up of 3,2000 Fujitsu servers packed with Nvidia GPUs, loads of NetApp storage and connected together with some fat bandwidth via Mellanox interconnects. "The new supercomputer will be operated by National Computational Infrastructure (NCI) within The Australian National University campus in Canberra, and will be used by the likes of the CSIRO, Geosciences Australia and the Bureau of Meteorology for crucial research". It will replace the NCI's current supercomputer, Raijin and should be complete by November 2019.

Not News

Bose reclaims the best noise cancelling headphones crown

Bose's new Noise Cancelling Headphones 700 are the new king of the noise cancelling headphone hill. The Verge reviewed em and they reckon they've got the best noise cancelling going around, as well as the best handsfree phone call quality of any headphones without a boom mic. They reckon "you can talk to people at a normal volume on loud streets and they'll still hear you clearly". Unfortunately they don't fold up for smaller storage and if you want to use the smartphone app to control the headphone settings, you need a Bose account which is a bit shit. But yeah, if you want a pair of NC headphones, these are the ones to get.


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😁 The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon. Join us on Slack and chat with other Sizzle subscribers.

The Sizzle is created on Wathaurong land and acknowledges the traditional owners of country throughout Australia, recognising their continuing connection to land, water and community. I pay my respect to them and their cultures and to elders both past and present.​