Here's a pair of great (JWZ) posts (Kevin Marks) on the Nym Wars, in which Googlers, net users, and sensible people try to convince the G+ team that it's insane to tell people that they must socialize using their "real names," and to then try to adjudicate what a "real name" is. Both link out to the canonical essays produced to date on the subject, such as EFF and boyd, and add a lot of good context.
Most police have access to tools that can retrieve cleartext data from about 50% of the phones they confiscate, reports The New York Times. Phone-hacking tools typically exploit security flaws to remove a phone's limit on passcode attempts and then enter passcodes until the phone unlocks. Because of all the possible combinations, a six-digit iPhone passcode takes… READ THE REST
Mashable has a great new piece — in video, and in text — about the intersections between COVID-19 restrictions and surveillance-style privacy invasions. The reporting by Tulika Bose and Jack Morse is smart and nuanced enough that it doesn't veer into anti-masker conspiracy theories, and rather, takes a rational skeptic's approach to the potential abuses… READ THE REST
Google is giving police info that identifies users who have searched for terms the police specify, reports CNet's Alfred Ng. The practice is exposed in the case of an arsonist, collared after police asked Google for anyone who had searched for the victim's address. Google yielded the suspect's IP address, and the cops figured out… READ THE REST
Ask most Apple Watch users about their biggest beef with the most popular wearable in tech today and many will likely answer with the same beef had by many users of wirelessly charged devices. It just isn't so simple making sure your wireless charger is lined up properly with your device to get a steady,… READ THE REST
This week in thinking machines news, a Harvard professor and his students have now raised $14 million to create artificial intelligence so smart that even hackers can't crack it. Meanwhile, reports from the White House suggest the federal government is close to issuing their directives on how agencies should regulate AI going forward. And if… READ THE REST
Back when you used to split time between home and the office, it really wasn't usually a big deal. But now that you spend hour after hour tapping away at that one laptop all day and all night long, you should probably start paying attention to just how freakin' hot that thing is getting. In… READ THE REST