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Watch Your Freedom (Because Apple's Not)

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Mac

At Apple's "Spring Forward" press event on Monday, March 9, the electronics company expounded upon its plans to release a smartwatch and revealed updates to its MacBook computer line, among other announcements. Underneath their focus on "innovation" and "design," however, Apple CEO Tim Cook and other participating speakers neglected to address growing concerns about the proprietary software and Digital Restrictions Management technologies distributed with its products and services, which only serve to extend the company's oppression of computer users and their freedoms.

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The privacy differential - why don't more non-US and open source firms use the NSA as marketing collateral?

Filed under
Microsoft
Mac
OSS

The shockwaves generated by Edward Snowden's revelations of the close collaboration between US tech giants such as Microsoft and Apple and the NSA are still reverberating through the industry. Those disclosures, together with related ones such as the involvement of the NSA in industrial espionage, as well as the asymmetric nature of US law when it comes to gathering data from foreign individuals, present something of an open goal for non-US technology companies - or so one might have thought.

On the face of it, then, it is surprising that non-US technology firms and others that can distance themselves from the US law are not proclaiming this fact more loudly. After all, there must be a considerable number of organisations that would dearly love to locate their data as far away from the attentions of the NSA as possible.

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Hey Windows User, Should You Switch To Linux or Mac?

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Microsoft
Mac

You can answer three questions to choose between Linux or Windows, and you can gripe about how Windows is killing the traditional desktop, but all that is fluff. The purpose of an operating system is to put forth an environment where you can get things done—where you can get things done. You are what matters and everything else is bullshit.

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Is the iPhone really better than Android phones?

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Android
Mac

My feeling is that we ought to be grateful that people have a choice. I can’t imagine anything worse than one platform dominating any particular market completely. We saw what that looked like on the desktop when Microsoft ruled the roost with Windows back in the 90s, and it wasn’t pretty.

I wouldn’t want Android or iOS to completely dominate the mobile phone market. In fact, I’d much rather there were a strong third or fourth choice available as well. It’s never a good idea for one or two companies or platforms to have too much power or control over consumers.

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Apple makes money, but Android makes markets

Filed under
Android
Mac

We rightly laud Apple for its ability to get us to pay a premium, but the world owes more to Google for making mobile computing a commodity.

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Ubuntu 14.10 running on my MacBook

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GNU
Linux
Mac

A few days ago I thought I’d never run something different than Mac OS X on my MacBook, but then I remembered how great Ubuntu ran some years ago on my old laptop. Apart from that my development environment was easily adoptable to Ubuntu and I really love customising stuff, so I made the switch to Ubuntu.

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Why do some Mac owners run Linux instead of OS X?

Filed under
Linux
Mac

There’s an odd thing happening out there in the world. Some Mac owners are actually replacing OS X with Linux. While there are no numbers available to show how many are doing this, it’s clearly something that has been happening for a while as you can see from this thread on Reddit. I have some thoughts of my own to share about this, and I’ll tell you in this post why some Apple customers might be moving to Linux on their Macs.

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Why some Apple customers run Linux on Macbooks instead of OS X

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GNU
Linux
Mac

Apple has always had attractive and stylish hardware, but now it seems that some users are opting to run Linux instead of OS X on their Macbooks. A redditor asked about this trend and got some very interesting answers.

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Why Mac users don’t switch to Linux

Filed under
Linux
Mac

Linux and Mac users share at least one common thing: they prefer not to use Windows. But after that the two groups part company and tend to go their separate ways. But why don’t more Mac users switch to Linux? Is there something that prevents Mac users from making the jump?

Datamation took a look at these questions and tried to answer them. Datamation’s conclusion was that it’s really about the applications and workflow, not the operating system:

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Linus Torvalds Says Apple's HFS+ Is the Worst, Probably Designed by Monkeys

Filed under
Linux
Mac

Linus Torvalds doesn't usually talk about things he doesn't know, so it's probably fair to imagine that, when he says that the HFS+ file system used on Mac OS X is garbage, he's not wrong.

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GNU/Linux Desktops/Laptops and Devices

OSS Leftovers

Security Leftovers

  • Google and IBM launch open-source security tool for containers
    Google and IBM, together with a few other partners, released an open-source project that gathers metadata that developers can use to secure their software. According to an IBM blog post, the goal of the project is to help developers keep security standards, while microservices and containers cut the software supply chain.
  • Top 10 Hacking Techniques Used By Hackers
    We live in a world where cyber security has become more important than physical security, thousands of websites and emails are hacked daily. Hence, It is important to know the Top hacking techniques used by hackers worldwide to exploit vulnerable targets all over the internet.
  • Protect your wifi on Fedora against KRACK
    You may have heard about KRACK (for “Key Reinstallation Attack”), a vulnerability in WPA2-protected Wi-Fi. This attack could let attackers decrypt, forge, or steal data, despite WPA2’s improved encryption capabilities. Fear not — fixes for Fedora packages are on their way to stable.
  • Federal watchdog tells Equifax—no $7.25 million IRS contract for you
    The Government Accountability Office (GAO) on Monday rejected Equifax's bid to retain its $7.25 million "taxpayer identity" contract—the one awarded days after Equifax announced it had exposed the Social Security numbers and other personal data of some 145 million people.
  • Adobe Flash vulnerability exploited by BlackOasis hacking group to plant FinSpy spyware

    Security researchers have discovered a new Adobe Flash vulnerability that has already been exploited by hackers to deploy the latest version of FinSpy malware on targets. Kaspersky Lab researchers said a hacker group called BlackOasis has already taken advantage of the zero-day exploit – CVE-2017-11292 – to deliver its malicious payload via a Microsoft Word document.

  • Companies turn a blind eye to open source risk [Ed: No, Equifax got b0rked due to bad practices, negligence, incompetence, not FOSS]
    For instance, criminals who potentially gained access to the personal data of the Equifax customers exploited an Apache Struts CVE-2017-5638 vulnerability.
  • Checking Your Passwords Against the Have I Been Pwned List
    Two months ago, Troy Hunt, the security professional behind Have I been pwned?, released an incredibly comprehensive password list in the hope that it would allow web developers to steer their users away from passwords that have been compromised in past breaches.

How to use an Arduino and Raspberry Pi to turn a fiber optic neural network into wall art

Hollywood has made many big promises about artificial intelligence (AI): how it will destroy us, how it will save us, and how it will pass us butter. One of the less memorable promises is how cool it will look. There's a great example of amazing AI visualization in Avengers: Age of Ultron when Tony Stark's AI butler Jarvis interacts with Ultron and we see an organic floating network of light morphing and pulsing. I wanted to make something similar to fill blank space on my apartment wall (to improve upon the usual Ikea art). Obviously, I couldn't create anything as amazing as Jarvis as a floating orb of light; however, I could use a machine learning algorithm that looks interesting with quirky data visualization: a neural network! It employs biologically inspired elements that were meant to replicate how (we thought) the human brain works. Read more