Issue 1366 - Monday 17th May, 2021

In Today's Issue

The News

DarkSide ransomware gang got paid for pipeline hack then shut down and pissed off

DarkSide, the large group responsible for holding an oil pipeline ransom via a cryptolocker, has apparently shut down, after getting paid a US$5m ransom by Colonial. Their payment server is gone and their public blog where they'd highlight non-paying companies is also gone, indicating they're quitting while they're ahead as the shit storm that engulfed them after touching the USA's oil got them scared. Meanwhile, Ireland's health IT system is offline after it got stung with a cryptolocker. Almost every hospital in Ireland is operating at reduced capacity and for major emergencies only as they have no computer systems to assit in managing patients.

China successfully lands Zhurong rover on Mars

China joins the short list of countries (i.e: there's now 2) to successfully land a spacecraft on Mars. Tianwen-1's capsule had a soft landing on Saturday and will pop out Zhurong, a rover that'll explore the Martian surface, in a few days time. It has a planned operational period of 90 days and will use the Tianwen-1 orbiter to relay its findings back to Earth. This is a pretty amazing achievement considering recent attempts by the UK (Beagle 2 in 2003) and European Space Agency (Schiaparelli in 2016) both failed. Even in the 70s, Russia couldn't do it successfully, with craft failing to communicate back to Earth a few seconds after landing.

eBay bans the sale of adult products on its platform

eBay is banning the sale of all "sexually explicit" content on its platform starting June 15th. The policy pretty much states that anything displaying nudity is not allowed, with very few exceptions like "tasteful" nudes and vintage magazines. It's unclear what prompted this change from eBay. They've been operating for years selling adult gear fine, why the change? I don't know how much adult type stuff is sold on eBay, but this is just another example of the increasing prudish nature of the internet. All the rough edges that made the internet special are getting filed down and everything's boring and sanitised.

Something I Saw On The Internet

Waymo robotaxi gets thwarted by traffic cone then runs away from support staff

Unlike Tesla, Waymo has true honest to God robotaxis driving around a small area of Phoenix, picking up people and taking them to their destination without a human in the driver's seat. In this 30 minute video from a random (loveable) dork, you can see what it's like to ride in a driverless taxi and watch all the times it fucks up. In this particular video the vehicle is totally disabled by an errant traffic cone and blocks traffic until a Waymo assistant comes to rescue it - but the car runs away, hahahah. It's a great demo of how far we've come with driverless vehicles, but also how damn far we still have to go until it's a reality.


The End

📻 S'il Vous Plait - Otoboke Beaver

😎 The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon.

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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