GeekSpeak for 2014-09-27

Drones Bash Microwaved Internet Censorship

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The Geeks discuss skinny jeans, phone charging hoaxes, and the ethics in tech & cyberspace. All this and more from Bonnie, Ben, and Miles during your Week In Geek.

Zendo as a tool for teaching the scientific method

Ben likes this game!

Zendo – the scientific method in a box

First, an overview of the game, in which I’ve taken the liberty of re-theming it as an exercise in the scientific method (the original theme is some Buddhist-sounding mumbo jumbo having nothing to do with real Buddhism):

Let’s say we have three players (the minimum number)…

New Guinness Record For Largest EV Parade Set At 507 Vehicles

The ride was part of the 42nd Annual Silicon Valley Electric Vehicle Rally, the event was billed as the “nation’s largest electric vehicle event during National Drive Electric Week”

DHL launches first commercial drone 'parcelcopter' delivery service

The service will use an autonomous quadcopter to deliver small parcels to the German island of Juist, a sandbar island 12km into the North Sea from the German coast, inhabited by 2,000 people. Deliveries will include medication and other goods that may be “urgently needed”.

New “Shellshock” patch rushed out to resolve gaps in first fix

The most recent patches issued for the ‘Shellshock’ bug have apparently still left avenues of attack, based on the analysis of several open source developers. See the latest report for further information.

Apple Knew of iCloud Security Hole 6 Months Before Celebgate

Apple knew as early as March 2014 of a security hole that left the personal data of iCloud users vulnerable, according to leaked emails between the company and a noted security researcher.

The emails, obtained earlier this month by the Daily Dot and reviewed by multiple security experts, show Ibrahim Balic, a London-based software developer, informing Apple of a method he’d discovered for infiltrating iCloud accounts.

Threat to leak Emma Watson nude pics a stunt...to stop that sort of thing from happening.

Viral marketing company Rantic staged the hoax, building on Emma Watson’s popular UN speech about her initiative, HeforShe.org. Rantic posed as 4Chan, (where Celebgate started), threatening to release nude pics at EmmaYouAreNext.com. That site later revealed a plea to President Obama to shut down 4Chan.

Apple sells more than 10 million new iPhones in first three days

Apple Inc said it sold more than 10 million iPhones in the first weekend after its new models went on sale on Friday, underscoring strong demand for phones with larger displays.

Consumer Reports tests Apple's iPhone 5 and 6 for bends against Android rivals

Yesterday The Verge took you inside one of the buildings where Apple stress tests its devices, including iPhones, for wear and tear. The company’s line is that the iPhone is more than tough enough to exist in your pocket, as well as undergo potentially worse rigors of activity. Now Consumer Reports has published its own comparison using one of the same tests we saw — the three-point bend test. That’s when phones are held up at two points, while a bar comes down on the middle of the phone, and pressure is applied to see how much it can take before bending.

Don't Put Your Phone In the Microwave, Please!

Microwave energy will not charge your smartphone. To the contrary, it will scorch the device and render it inoperable. If you nuke your smartphone and subsequently complain about it online, people will probably make fun of you.

In 2014, who decides to ban a gay website from in-flight Wi-Fi?

If you were gay and a recent passenger on American Airlines, you might have used in-flight Wi-Fi provided by Gogo just like any other customer. In the course of finding somewhere to stay before you land, you might have navigated to misterbnb.com, a version of Airbnb where customers looking for a place to stay can be guaranteed the hosts are gay-friendly. Rather than getting the site’s homepage, however, your browser would have kicked you to an interstitial page telling you the site had been censored by Gogo. The given reason would have been the site had been categorized as ‘adult-and-pornography.’

Poe's Law

Poe’s law, named after its author Nathan Poe, is an Internet adage reflecting the idea that, without a clear indication of the author’s intent, it is difficult or impossible to tell the difference between an expression of sincere extremism and a parody of extremism.

Lewis's Law

Lewis’s law is an eponymous law taken from her observation that ‘the comments on any article about feminism justify feminism’.

PayPal integrates Bitcoin processors BitPay, Coinbase and GoCoin for merchants in the US and Canada

PayPal today announced partnerships with three leading Bitcoin payment processors: BitPay, Coinbase and GoCoin. The eBay-owned company wants to help digital goods merchants accept Bitcoin payments, although it is starting with those located in the US and Canada first (“We are considering expanding to other markets,” a PayPal spokesperson told TNW. “Stay tuned.”)

Intel putting 3D scanners in consumer tablets next year, phones to follow

Intel has been working on a 3D scanner small enough to fit in the bezel of even the thinnest tablets. The company aims to have the technology in tablets from 2015, with CEO Brian Krzanich telling the crowd at MakerCon in New York on Thursday that he hopes to put the technology in phones as well.

Russia Says It’s Putting Another Man on the Moon…By 2030

Russia’s space agency said Tuesday it will launch a “full-scale” exploration of the Moon as part of a long-term mission to get a human being on the lunar surface for the first time in decades.