Issue 1329 - Tuesday 23rd March, 2021

In Today's Issue

The News

LG can't find anyone to buy its smartphone business

LG's attempts to sell off its smartphone business to companies like Volkswagen (???) and Vingroup JSC ("a Vietnamese conglomerate focusing on real estate development, retail, and services ranging from healthcare to hospitality") have failed, so LG is probably gonna shut the whole thing down. Bit of a shit when there's one less serious competitor in the market, particularly since LG used their smartphones as a showcase for what their fancy components (displays and batteries mostly) can do, but hey, what ya gonna do? Smartphones are a commodity now. Apple and Samsung are the outliers here, selling premium products with huge markups.

Richard Stallman ignominiously returns to the FSF board

Old mate Richard Stallman is back on the Free Software Foundation's board. He founded it in 1985 and was president until 2019 when he resigned due to some weird as hell comments defending an MIT professor that got busted visting Jeffrey Epstein's Caribbean sex dungeon, where women were force to have sex with guests. Stallman also had a long history of iffy behaviour that often crossed the line between aloof nerd and straight up fuckwit. Either way, he's back now and nobody knows why except for the fact he's Richard Stallman - which I would have assumed in 2021 is more of a liability than an advantage.

First ever tweet sells for $3.6m as an NFT

Twitter's founder Jack Dorsey has sold the very first tweet made on the platform for sale via an NFT. The tweet - "just setting up my twttr" - was Dorsey's first tweet, made on March 21, 2006 and sold via auction on a platform called Valuables for 1630.5825601 Ether, which is currently trading at A$3,610,762. Sina Estavi, CEO of the blockchain company Bridge Oracle (who??), is now the technical owner of the very first tweet. Technically Sina purchased what's pretty much a digital certificate of authenticity saying "I own this Tweet". The tweet itself is still on Twitter's server and is still attributed to @jack. Dorsey is donating the money to "people impacted by COVID-19 in Africa".

Something I Saw On The Internet

Without cryptocurrency, ransomware wouldn't exist

The Association for Computing Machinery has a solid journal article looking at the current state of ransomware. What I realised after reading it was that this whole class of security problem is enabled by the fact cryptocurrencies exist. Take away cryptocurrencies and ransomware is ineffective as there's no way to pay the ransom without the cash getting traced back to you. Hypothetically, if governments wanted to "solve" the ransomware problem, they could ban cryptocurrencies and put a real dent in the ability of normies to buy crypto and pay off a ransom, lowering the chances of a successful ransomware attack.


The End

📻 Berlin Chair - Paul Dempsey

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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.‚Äč