GeekSpeak for 2018-09-24

Robot Apologizes for cutting Antenna with Chainsaw ARM

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Japanese robots are hopping around on an asteroid, Linus Torvalds apologizes for being a jerk, and ARM chips have a new trick up their sleeves. All this and more on the latest GeekSpeak.

Two Japanese robots are now happily hopping on an asteroid

Each rover weighs about a kilogram and will bounce across the asteroid’s surface.

ARM pointer authentication

Many exploits come down to convincing code (kernel or otherwise) to access a pointer that was crafted by the attacker. Buffer-overflow exploits and return-oriented programming, for example, both rely on placing a pointer where a return address is expected; when the processor “returns” to that address, the attacker takes control. Much of the hardening work over the years has focused on making it harder to overwrite addresses in this way. But, as demonstrated by a recent kernel patch set, there may be another way: using a new ARM processor feature to detect and reject crafted addresses.

A new antenna using single atoms could usher in the age of atomic radio

The team tested their device by recording themselves singing “Mary Had a Little Lamb”

I did a thing to convince myself the XS MAX 512 GB wasn't so expensive

I did a thing to convince myself the XS MAX 512 GB wasn’t so expensive

A $1, Linux-Capable, Hand-Solderable Processor

Over on the EEVblog, someone noticed an interesting chip that’s been apparently flying under our radar for a while. This is an ARM processor capable of running Linux. It’s hand-solderable in a TQFP package, has a built-in Mali GPU, support for a touch panel, and has support for 512MB of DDR3.

LKML: Linus Torvalds: Linux 4.19-rc4 released, an apology, and a maintainership note

I am not an emotionally empathetic kind of person
and that probably doesn’t come as a big surprise to anybody. Least of
all me. The fact that I then misread people and don’t realize (for
years) how badly I’ve judged a situation and contributed to an
unprofessional environment is not good.

After Years of Abusive E-mails, the Creator of Linux Steps Aside

After years of verbally abusing programmers who contribute to the Linux operating-system kernel he created, the celebrated coder Linus Torvalds is stepping aside and says he is getting help.

John Deere Just Swindled Farmers Out of Their Right to Repair

As anyone who repairs electronics knows, keeping a device in working order often means fixing both its hardware and software. But a big California farmers’ lobbying group just blithely signed away farmers’ right to access or modify the source code of any farm equipment software.

California may ban terrible default passwords on connected devices

A proposed law could force smart device manufacturers to shore up security.

Doom 2’s impossible secret is discovered, 24 years later

Co-creator John Romero sends his congratulations