Another Sunday, another round of stories from the Snowden files. I hope people don’t become fatigued of these continuous revelations, and it leads to change. Another good read is from the Atlantic How Americans Were Deceived About Cell-Phone Location Data. Precise but misleading language is a dangerous tool.
Very honored to be on Time’s 30 under 30 list alongside some amazing folks across a number of fields. I only have about another month of being under 30, so good to be on these lists while I still can.
Have you seen the famous Automattic / WordPress shuffleboard? That and more in this excellent profile and interview by Debra Winter in SOMA Magazine.
As written about by the Electronic Frontier Foundation and Techdirt, Automattic is fighting back against two cases where we feel the DMCA has been used abusively for censorship and bullying. Read more about it here.
Comscore, whose accuracy is generally between a Lotto Quick Pick and a drunken dart throw, says Google Maps usage has fallen since Apple Maps came on the scene. The Guardian has a good overview: How Google lost when everyone thought it had won.
We shouldn’t be surprised that in the absence of choice, people take the path of least resistance. What’s missing in these discussions is how it’s criminal Apple gets away with not allowing alternative defaults for maps, browsers, calendars, and any number of other areas, which means every time you click a link or address in the OS it opens Safari or Apple Maps, in my opinion inferior apps. Some developers get away with this by having settings to set Chrome or Google Maps as your default, like Tripit just added, but this is implemented in a hacky, per-application way, and every app puts their setting in a different place if they support it at all.
If Microsoft did this a decade ago we’d call for the DoJ to reopen their investigation. Apple has the best phone, best tablet, and in many ways the best operating system — we should not give them a pass for this blatantly self-interested and user-hostile stance. Defaults matter.
The story around badBIOS, the mysterious Mac and PC malware that jumps airgaps, is fascinating and surprising. The capabilities of sophisticated attackers right now vastly outstrip the defenses of any computer user or company. The news that the NSA had broken into the networks of Google and Yahoo, unfortunately, wasn’t surprising given Google’s move to encrypt traffic between datacenters early in September.