More on My LinkedIn Account

Friday, August 18th, 2017 07:14 pm
[syndicated profile] bruce_schneier_feed

Posted by Bruce Schneier

I have successfully gotten the fake LinkedIn account in my name deleted. To prevent someone from doing this again, I signed up for LinkedIn. This is my first -- and only -- post on that account:

My Only LinkedIn Post (Yes, Really)

Welcome to my LinkedIn page. It looks empty because I'm never here. I don't log in, I never post anything, and I won't read any notes or comments you leave on this site. Nor will I accept any invitations or click on any "connect" links. I'm sure LinkedIn is a nice place; I just don't have the time.

If you're looking for me, visit my webpage at www.schneier.com. There you'll find my blog, and just about everything I've written. My e-mail address is schneier@schneier.com, if you want to talk to me personally.

I mirror my blog on my Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/bruce.schneier/) and my Twitter feed (@schneierblog), but I don't visit those, either.

Now I hear that LinkedIn is e-mailing people on my behalf, suggesting that they friend, follow, connect, or whatever they do there with me. I assure you that I have nothing to do with any of those e-mails, nor do I care what anyone does in response.

BlackPods: Transform your Apple AirPods

Friday, August 18th, 2017 07:15 pm
[syndicated profile] loopinsight_feed

Posted by Jim Dalrymple

Thanks to BlackPods for sponsoring The Loop this week. At BlackPods, we’ve developed a proprietary coating system specifically for Apple’s AirPods. Our three-phase finishing procedure utilizes the latest in solvent-based painting technology to yield a luxurious finish that exceeds U.S. Military specifications. Every pair of customized AirPods we produce is hand-finished by a team of skilled artisans. Whether you purchase them through us or send yours in, each pair of AirPods is subjected to a rigorous visual and quality inspection.

BlackPods sells their AirPods in two colors: BlackPods Classic (high-gloss black), and BlackPods Stealth (matte black). BlackPods Classic are available for $279, and BlackPods Stealth are available for $299. Both finishes include free domestic shipping. BlackPods also allows its customers to mail in their own AirPods for customization– $99 for high-gloss black and $119 for matte black.

Use promo code THELOOP at checkout for $20 off anything in our store.

∞ Read this on The Loop

[syndicated profile] daringfireball_feed

Posted by John Gruber

Juli Clover, writing for MacRumors:

Emergency SOS is activated by pressing on the sleep/wake button of an iPhone five times in rapid succession. When the requisite number of presses is complete, it brings up a screen that offers buttons to power off the iPhone, bring up your Medical ID (if filled out) and make an emergency 911 call.

Along with these options, there’s also a cancel button. If you hit the sleep/wake button five times and then hit cancel, it disables Touch ID and requires a passcode before Touch ID can be re-enabled. Touch ID is also disabled if you actually make an emergency call.

This is a handy hidden feature because it allows Touch ID to be disabled discretely in situations where someone might be able to force a phone to be unlocked with a fingerprint, such as a robbery or an arrest. With Touch ID disabled in this way, there is no way to physically unlock an iPhone with a finger without the device’s passcode.

It’s also worth noting that there’s no real way to tell that Touch ID has been disabled in this manner.

This is a fantastic feature. In addition to being useful for anyone with Touch ID, it will also assuage concerns over coerced unlocking of your phone with a facial ID scanner (which is widely believed to be coming in the new high-end iPhone).

Once iOS 11 ships, spread the word about this to your friends and family.

[syndicated profile] loopinsight_feed

Posted by Shawn King

Unless you have a religious belief against it, is there really a need to have your remains put in a specific spot in the ground? I read a while back about burying people under trees, allowing their remains to fertilize and nourish the tree. I’d love to be buried under an apple tree in Nova Scotia.

∞ Read this on The Loop

Unfixable Automobile Computer Security Vulnerability

Friday, August 18th, 2017 11:40 am
[syndicated profile] bruce_schneier_feed

Posted by Bruce Schneier

There is an unpatchable vulnerability that affects most modern cars. It's buried in the Controller Area Network (CAN):

Researchers say this flaw is not a vulnerability in the classic meaning of the word. This is because the flaw is more of a CAN standard design choice that makes it unpatchable.

Patching the issue means changing how the CAN standard works at its lowest levels. Researchers say car manufacturers can only mitigate the vulnerability via specific network countermeasures, but cannot eliminate it entirely.

Details on how the attack works are here:

The CAN messages, including errors, are called "frames." Our attack focuses on how CAN handles errors. Errors arise when a device reads values that do not correspond to the original expected value on a frame. When a device detects such an event, it writes an error message onto the CAN bus in order to "recall" the errant frame and notify the other devices to entirely ignore the recalled frame. This mishap is very common and is usually due to natural causes, a transient malfunction, or simply by too many systems and modules trying to send frames through the CAN at the same time.

If a device sends out too many errors, then­ -- as CAN standards dictate -- ­it goes into a so-called Bus Off state, where it is cut off from the CAN and prevented from reading and/or writing any data onto the CAN. This feature is helpful in isolating clearly malfunctioning devices and stops them from triggering the other modules/systems on the CAN.

This is the exact feature that our attack abuses. Our attack triggers this particular feature by inducing enough errors such that a targeted device or system on the CAN is made to go into the Bus Off state, and thus rendered inert/inoperable. This, in turn, can drastically affect the car's performance to the point that it becomes dangerous and even fatal, especially when essential systems like the airbag system or the antilock braking system are deactivated. All it takes is a specially-crafted attack device, introduced to the car's CAN through local access, and the reuse of frames already circulating in the CAN rather than injecting new ones (as previous attacks in this manner have done).

Slashdot thread.

Gibson appoints Slash as Global Brand Ambassador

Thursday, August 17th, 2017 07:41 pm
[syndicated profile] loopinsight_feed

Posted by Jim Dalrymple

As part of his new role, the legendary Guns N’ Roses guitarist is currently developing new products with three of Gibson’s guitar brands, Gibson Custom, Gibson and Epiphone. Details of the new products will be announced beginning later this month.

Cheers, Slash.

∞ Read this on The Loop

[syndicated profile] daringfireball_feed

Posted by John Gruber

Vice News:

Correspondent Elle Reeve goes behind the scenes with white nationalist leaders, the Charlottesville Police, and Black Lives Matter during the “Unite the Right” rally.

22 minutes, and worth every second. It really gives a sense of just how tense this weekend-long confrontation was, and how scary (and well-armed) these Nazi motherfuckers are. Reeve does a great job letting them speak for themselves.

Why Cloudflare Terminated Daily Stormer

Thursday, August 17th, 2017 06:51 pm
[syndicated profile] daringfireball_feed

Posted by John Gruber

Matthew Prince, CEO of Cloudflare:

Earlier today, Cloudflare terminated the account of the Daily Stormer. We’ve stopped proxying their traffic and stopped answering DNS requests for their sites. We’ve taken measures to ensure that they cannot sign up for Cloudflare’s services ever again.

Our terms of service reserve the right for us to terminate users of our network at our sole discretion. The tipping point for us making this decision was that the team behind Daily Stormer made the claim that we were secretly supporters of their ideology.

Our team has been thorough and have had thoughtful discussions for years about what the right policy was on censoring. Like a lot of people, we’ve felt angry at these hateful people for a long time but we have followed the law and remained content neutral as a network. We could not remain neutral after these claims of secret support by Cloudflare.

Now, having made that decision, let me explain why it’s so dangerous.

I’m a staunch First Amendment supporter. I believe these Nazi motherfuckers have a right to publish their garbage propaganda. But they don’t have a right to Cloudflare services. Prince’s thoughtful explanation makes clear that this was a last resort, and hopefully one-time exception, to their policy of not censoring sites over political content.

The internet really changes the way this works, though. In the print days, there was no equivalent of a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack. There are only a handful of very large companies that can defend against a DDoS attack, and Cloudflare is one of them. Now that Cloudflare has dropped them, their web site is unreachable.

Dilution of Whisky – The Molecular Perspective

Thursday, August 17th, 2017 06:38 pm
[syndicated profile] daringfireball_feed

Posted by John Gruber

Interesting new paper published in Scientific Report by Björn C. G. Karlsson and Ran Friedman:

Despite the growing knowledge of the nature of water-alcohol mixtures on a molecular level, much less is known on the interaction of water, alcohol and small solutes. In particular, the nature of the interaction between the solvent and taste-carrying molecules, such as guaiacol, is not known. To address this gap, we used MD simulations to study the distribution of guaiacol in water-alcohol mixtures of different concentrations. Our simulations revealed that guaiacol is present at the air-liquid interface at ethanol concentrations that correspond to the alcohol content of bottled or diluted whiskies. Because the drink is consumed at the interface first, our findings help to understand why adding water to whisky helps to enhance its taste.

I loved this line:

Overall, there is a fine balance between diluting the whisky to taste and diluting the whisky to waste.

I got this via The Verge, who ran it with the headline “Here’s the Scientific Reason It’s Better to Drink Whiskey on the Rocks”. That headline surely turned heads (and generated clicks) because neat versus on-the-rocks is a polarizing debate, but it’s not supported by this paper. Karlsson and Friedman report only on the effects of adding water, not changing the temperature. That said, in yours truly’s humble opinion, almost all whisky tastes better with a large ice cube.

[syndicated profile] loopinsight_feed

Posted by Jim Dalrymple

On Wednesday, Apple confirmed to BuzzFeed News that it had disabled Apple Pay support for a handful of websites that sold sweaters with Nazi logos, T-shirts emblazoned with the phrase “White Pride,” and a bumper sticker showing a car plowing into stick figure demonstrators. Following Saturday’s Charlottesville demonstrations, where one woman was killed by a car driven by a white nationalist, the iPhone-maker blocked three white nationalist sites from using Apple Pay.

Good.

∞ Read this on The Loop

Uber wins U.S. court appeal in price-fixing case

Thursday, August 17th, 2017 05:44 pm
[syndicated profile] loopinsight_feed

Posted by Jim Dalrymple

Uber Technologies Inc on Thursday won a victory in its effort to keep unhappy customers from suing in court, persuading a federal appeals court to send a Connecticut passenger’s price-fixing case against the ride-service company into arbitration.

Meyer accused Uber and Kalanick of conspiring with drivers, whose earnings are shared with Uber, to charge “surge pricing” fares during peak demand periods.

It’s supply and demand. If he didn’t read the agreement when he signed up, that’s on him, not Uber. People will sue for any reason.

∞ Read this on The Loop

[syndicated profile] daringfireball_feed

Posted by John Gruber

Todd Haselton, writing for CNBC:

“Court documents indicate that Google paid Apple $1B in 2014, and we estimate that total Google payments to Apple in FY 17 may approach $3B,” Bernstein analyst A.M. Sacconaghi Jr. said. “Given that Google payments are nearly all profit for Apple, Google alone may account for 5% of Apple’s total operating profits this year, and may account for 25% of total company OP growth over the last two years.”

I would love to be a fly on the wall for those negotiations.

Sacconaghi said that Google might decide to back away from paying Apple any licensing fees if it feels confident enough that its search engine is so popular Apple won’t include any other option by default.

On the other hand, Sacconaghi said that Apple’s iOS devices contribute about 50 percent to Google’s mobile search revenue, which means Google might be too afraid to walk away from its licensing deal with Apple. In this case, it’s a win-win for Apple and Google.

If Apple was willing to dump Google Maps, they’d be willing to dump Google Search too. The differences between results from Google versus Bing or DuckDuckGo are way smaller than the differences between Google Maps and Apple Maps back in 2012. Apple is in a strong position in this relationship.

Tim Cook’s Email to Employees About Charlottesville

Thursday, August 17th, 2017 05:07 pm
[syndicated profile] daringfireball_feed

Posted by John Gruber

Tim Cook:

We must not witness or permit such hate and bigotry in our country, and we must be unequivocal about it. This is not about the left or the right, conservative or liberal. It is about human decency and morality. I disagree with the president and others who believe that there is a moral equivalence between white supremacists and Nazis, and those who oppose them by standing up for human rights. Equating the two runs counter to our ideals as Americans.

Regardless of your political views, we must all stand together on this one point — that we are all equal. As a company, through our actions, our products and our voice, we will always work to ensure that everyone is treated equally and with respect.

This is where we’ve gotten to: Tim Cook felt the need to denounce Nazism — fucking Nazism — because the president of the United States won’t.

Josh Marshall: ‘The House Is on Fire’

Thursday, August 17th, 2017 05:03 pm
[syndicated profile] daringfireball_feed

Posted by John Gruber

Josh Marshall:

I confess I had a small degree of surprise that the events of the weekend — as horrifying and tragic as they are — have had quite the effect on people they seem to have had. This is not to diminish them. It is only to say that I do not think they should be so surprising. I don’t think they should amount to a revelation that shifts our basic understanding of things. We have if not a growing white supremacist movement in the US at least an increasingly vocal and emboldened one. They both made Trump possible and have in turn been energized and emboldened by his success. He reacts this way because he is one of them. He is driven by the same view of the world, the same animus and grievances. What we’ve seen over the last five days is sickening and awful. The house is on fire. But it was on fire a week ago. It’s been on fire since November. The truth is indeed unimaginable and terrifying. But we need to accept the full truth of it if we are going to be able to save our country.

Trump Gives White Supremacists an Unequivocal Boost

Thursday, August 17th, 2017 05:00 pm
[syndicated profile] daringfireball_feed

Posted by John Gruber

Glenn Thrush and Maggie Haberman, reporting for The New York Times (emphasis added):

No word in the Trump lexicon is as tread-worn as “unprecedented.” But members of the president’s staff, stunned and disheartened, said they never expected to hear such a voluble articulation of opinions that the president had long expressed in private. The National Economic Council chairman, Gary D. Cohn, and the Treasury secretary, Steven Mnuchin, who are Jewish, stood by uncomfortably as the president exacerbated a controversy that has once again engulfed a White House in disarray.

The President of the United States is an angry, resentful white supremacist. That’s been clear to me ever since he started campaigning. If any good comes of this terrible week, it’s that more and more people are now seeing it, and are outraged by it.

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