2018/10/04: The story, which has been a year in the making and covers events it says happened three years ago, had a huge impact on the markets: the company at the center of the story, San Jose-based Super Micro, saw its share price drop by nearly 50 per cent; likewise Apple's share price dropped by just under two per cent, and Amazon's dropped by more than two per cent.
But the article has been strongly denied by the three main companies involved: Apple, Amazon, and Super Micro. Each has issued strong and seemingly unambiguous statements denying the existence and discovery of such chips or any investigation by the US intelligence services into the surveillance implants.
These statements will have gone through layers of lawyers to make sure they do not open these publicly traded corporations to lawsuits and securities fraud claims down the line. Similarly, Bloomberg employs veteran reporters and layers of editors, who check and refine stories, and has a zero tolerance for inaccuracies.
So which is true: did the Chinese government succeed in infiltrating the hardware supply chain and install spy chips in highly sensitive US systems; or did Bloomberg's journalists go too far in their assertions?
2018/10/08: That Businessweek decided to run a story accusing the country of espionage may be a reaction to those accusations, or it may speak to how solid its editors felt about the reporting.
admission of guilt here about failing to either detect the hack or proactively tell the public about it would be pretty damaging to the reputations of all the victims. It has since emerged that Businessweek’s report had some questionable elements, including a chart that took pretty broad artistic license with how the hack would have worked, but Bloomberg stands by its reporting. Who is right?
Maybe the most important thing to remember here is not the strict truth of what happened, but that the story resonates because — not to be a conspiracy theorist — it is eminently plausible.
It already appears from the story that these companies may have done significant work to quietly settle the issue with the government directly.
All that said, it also seems plausible that Businessweek’s sources (the people working for the respective companies and government divisions at the time the story was reported) have no fucking idea what they are talking about (security authorities are divided on whether this hack would work, why anyone would even do it this way, and whether Businessweek is fully, accurately describing it).
it’s not hard to imagine someone “with knowledge of the situation” overhearing a conversation about a malfunctioning chip, which is how both Apple and Amazon explained the story away, and misunderstanding it to mean willful surveillance by whatever political interest might have supplied it.
2018/10/05: Last year, Apple outraged independent technicians when they updated the Iphone design to prevent third party repair, adding a "feature" that allowed handsets to detect when their screens had been swapped (even when they'd been swapped for an original, Apple-manufactured screen) and refuse to function until they got an official Apple unlock code.
Now, this system has come to the MacBook Pros and Imac Pros, thanks to the "T2 security chip" which will render systems nonfunctional after replacing the keyboard, screen, case, or other components, until the a proprietary Apple "configuration tool" is used to unlock the system.
Apple does not tell its customers that the computers it sells are designed to punish them for opting to get their property repaired by independent technicians; the details of the T2 came from a leaked service manual.
“There’s two possible explanations: This is a continued campaign of obsolescence and they want to control the ecosystem and bring all repair into the network they control,” Kyle Wiens, the CEO of iFixit, told me on the phone. “Another is security, but I don’t see a security model that doesn’t trust the owner of the device making much sense.”
2018-09-24: Google parent Alphabet and the other four dominant U.S. technology companies -- Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, and Facebook -- are fast becoming industrial giants. They spent a combined $80 billion in the last year on big-ticket physical assets, including manufacturing equipment and specialized tools for assembling iPhones and the powerful computers and undersea internet cables Facebook needs to fire up Instagram videos in a flash.
Thanks to this surge in spending -- up from $40 billion in 2015 -- they've joined the ranks of automakers, telephone companies, and oil drillers as the country's biggest spenders on capital goods, items including factories, heavy equipment, and real estate that are considered long-term investments.
Their combined outlay is about 10 times what GM spends annually on its plants, vehicle-assembly robots, and other materials. The splurge by tech companies is behind an upswing in capital-goods spending among big U.S. companies, which is seeing its fastest growth in years, according to a Credit Suisse analysis. The $80 billion tab also is a snapshot of why it's tough to unseat the tech giants.
How can a company hope to compete with Google's driverless cars when it spends $20 billion a year to ensure it has the best laser-guided sensors and computer chips? There are a lot of physical assets behind all those internet clouds.
2018/05/08: Apple has dominated the education market for a generation. However, in recent years, Google seems to be challenging Apple for domination of the education sector. Google is an excellent option for cash-strapped districts.
Chromebooks are substantially less expensive than Apple's laptops.
schools can begin and remain within the Google ecosystem and not face an awkward transition at the beginning of third grade.
Google products show a high degree of compatibility with each other, which makes things much easier for teachers and students.
data increasingly shows that these days, even tech workers feel squeezed by the Bay Area's scorching prices. Fifty-eight percent of tech workers surveyed recently said they have delayed starting a family due to the rising cost of living, according to a poll that included employees from Apple, Uber, Google, LinkedIn, Facebook, Lyft, and other Bay Area companies.
The average base salary for a software engineer at Apple is $121,083 a year, the article notes, yet the company also had the largest percentage of surveyed tech employees who said they'd been force to delay starting their families -- 69%.
Anywhere else in the country, we'd be successful people who owned a home and didn't worry about anything. Not HERE.
2018/09/12: This is not the first time tech overlords have made digital content rights inconsistent with any person’s normal understanding of what a “purchase” is. Back in 2009, Amazon customers noticed that their copies of 1984 and Animal Farm by George Orwell were suddenly missing. It turned out the copies were created by a seller that did not have the rights to the books, and when Amazon found this out, it pulled the books directly off of all the Kindles that had downloaded them. Later, the company acknowledged this was maybe not the best course of action.
Like the oil barons at the turn of the 20th century, the data barons are determined to extract as much as possible of a resource that's central to the economy of their time. The more information they can get to feed the algorithms that power their ad-targeting machines and product-recommendation engines, the better. In the absence of serious competition or (until Europe's recently introduced General Data Protection Regulation) serious legal constraints on the handling of personal data, they are going to keep undermining privacy in their push to know as much about their users as they possibly canrnrnTheir dominance is allowing them to play a dangerous and outsize role in our politics and culture. The web giants have helped undermine confidence in democracy by underestimating the threat posed by Russian trolls, Macedonian fake-news farms, and other purveyors of propaganda. Zuckerberg at first dismissed claims that disinformation on Facebook had influenced the 2016 election as "pretty crazy." But Facebook itself now says that between June 2015 and August 2017, as many as 126 million people may have seen content on the network that was created by a Russian troll farm.rnrnrnWhy haven't antitrust regulators blocked deals to promote competition? It's mainly because of a change in US antitrust philosophy in the 1980s, inspired by neoclassical economists and legal scholars at the University of Chicago. Before the shift, antitrust enforcers were wary of any deals that reinforced a company's dominant position. After it, they became more tolerant of such combinations, as long as prices for consumers didn't rise. This was just fine with internet companies, since most of their services were free anyway. Critics say trustbusters exercised too little scrutiny. "Just because the web companies offer products for free doesn't mean they should get a free pass," says Jonathan Kanter, an antitrust lawyer at Paul Weiss.rnrnthanks to their vast wealth, fining them for any transgressions won't diminish their power.rnrnOne radical solution would be to break them up, just as the US government splintered the dominant Standard Oil monopoly in the early 1900s. Some progressive advocacy groups in the US have been running online campaigns with slogans like "Facebook has too much power over our lives and democracy. It's time for us to take that power back," and calling on the FTC to force the social network to sell Instagram, WhatsApp, and Messenger to create competition.rnrnSo how to curb the power of the data barons? Rather than waiting for legal battles that may or may not foster more competition, we urgently need to find ways to bolster rivals. That means reducing the vast chasm between the amounts of information held by the web giants and the rest. Regulation can help here: Europe's new data privacy regime requires companies to hold people's data in machine-readable form and let them move it easily to other businesses if they want to. This "data portability" rule will allow startups to get hold of more data quickly.rnrnrnSome argue that we need to think much more boldly-and not just with the big internet companies in mind. Viktor Mayer-Sch195182nberger, a professor at the University of Oxford, has proposed what he calls a "progressive data-sharing mandate" that would apply to all businesses. This would require a company that has passed a certain level of market share (say, 10 percent) to share some data with other firms in its industry that ask for it. The data would be chosen at random and stripped of all personal identifiers. Intuitively, the idea makes sense: the closer a company gets to dominating its market, the more data it would have to share, making it easier for rivals to compete by building a better product.
2016/02/16: ShooterOrder Compelling Apple Asst iPhone
It's a confusing and complicated story, and also not well-reported. The bottom-line is that this is the tip of a very large iceberg. Its nature and scope of must be understood, now.
Localism can only flourish with a competent, generous, and fair federal government.
The Internet of Shit is a column about all the shitty things we try to connect to the internet, and what can be done about it. It's from the anonymous creator of the Internet of Shit Twitter...
Fast Company's Mark Sullivan asked me to explain what could happen if Apple went through with its rumored plans to ship a phone with no analog sound outputs, only digital ones -- what kind of DRM badness might we expect to emerge? Start by understanding this: copyright lets you do a lot of stuff without
A lot of people are watching the spectacle of Apple vs. the FBI and the Homeland Security Theatre and rubbing their eyes, wondering why Apple (in the person of CEO Tim Cook) is suddenly the knight in shining armour on the side of consumer privacy and civil rights. Apple, after all, is a goliath-sized corporate behemoth with the second largest market cap in US stock market history-what's in it for them?
The FBI's spin has a lot of people thinking about its Apple fight all wrong.
Il caso dell'iPhone del terrorista di San Bernardino impone una riflessione sullo scontro fra poteri (Stato-aziende private) e sulla necessità di un equilibrio fra sicurezza, privacy, diritti commerciali e diritti dei cittadini. è in gioco la natura stessa della nostra democrazia.
Apple's refusal to help the government unlock the San Bernardino shooter's iPhone may have some surprising consequences. Remember, Apple is defying not only the Justice Department but also the wishes of the iPhone's owner. That's because the iPhone in question is actually owned by the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health, which issued it to Syed Farook to use at work. As a practical matter, Apple's technical and legal position elevates Farook's privacy over the interests of the iPhone's real owner. This may well be consistent with Apple's corporate marketing strategy, which seems to be making the iPhone so sexy that employees will simply demand that companies buy it for them. But the San Bernardino case is a wakeup call for companies who think that, because they are the customers, Apple owes them some allegiance. Nope. Instead, Apple's technical and legal war with the United States government is turning its corporate customers into collateral damage. As that lesson sinks in, enterprise purchases of iPhones may take a hit. Indeed, in the financial industry, the fallout could be worse. Given Apple's decision to privilege users' privacy above all else, it may well be unlawful for banks and brokerages to let...
L'articolo è stato aggiornato dopo la pubblicazione iniziale. Ultimo aggiornamento: 2016/02/19 18:20. Non capita spesso che una multinazio...
The precedent the FBI seeks in the San Bernardino case is frighteningly broad.
Open Source is dominant on the desktop. But is that a consolation prize for missing what matters?