The Internet of Things Could Kill You, Or At Least Jab You With A Screwdriver

  Lucas and his killer robots. Photo: JW (This is the transcript of my BBC World Service piece which ran today. The original Reuters story is here.)  I’m sure you’ve seen those cute little humanoid robots around? They’re either half size, or quarter size, they look like R2D2, and if you believe the ads, they …

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Evernote Makes Employee Reading of Messages Opt-in

Evernote has been through the wringer with its decision to add machine learning to its repertoire, effectively trying to pave the way to added services based on scanning the contents of users’ notes. Users were not happy, not least because Evernote made it opt-out. The settings looked like this:  Evernote has now had a change …

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Turn off location in iOS, and Uber doesn’t work

(Update: Uber say they are looking into it.)  Buzzfeed says Privacy Advocates Want Uber To Stop Tracking Users After Rides End but Uber responds that “by offering the option of manually entering pick-up locations, the company is giving users a choice to be tracked or not.” It quotes Kurt Opsahl, deputy executive director and general counsel at …

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I’m An Airline, Fly Me

This an email from a bona fide airline:  Dear Sir/Madam, Please be informed that your transaction with [international carrier] has been confirmed. Due to fraud prevention procedure against Credit Card transaction, we would like to validate your recent transaction with [international carrier] by filling information below : Passenger(s) name : Route :Date of Travel :Cardholder …

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BBC: The Rise of Disappearables

The transcript of my BBC World Service piece on wearables. Reuters original story here.  Forget ‘wearables’, and even ‘hearables’, if you’ve ever heard of them. The next big thing in mobile devices: ‘disappearables’. Unless it really messes up, Apple is going to do for wearables with the Watch what is has done with the iPod …

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The Facebook Experiment: Some Collated Views

A few pieces in the Facebook Experiment. I’m still mulling my view.  Paul Bernal: The Facebook Experiment: the ‘why’ questions…:  Perhaps Facebook will look a little bad for a little while – but the potential financial benefit from the new stream of advertising revenue, the ability to squeeze more money from a market that looks increasingly …

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True Video Lies

This is a longer version of a piece I recorded for the BBC World Service. The other day my wife lost her phone out shopping. We narrowed it down to either the supermarket or the taxi. So we took her shopping receipt to the supermarket and asked to see their CCTV to confirm she still …

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Carrier IQ’s Opt-Out Data Collection Patent

ZDNet writes here about an Carrier IQ patent that outlines keylogging and ability to target individual devices . Which is interesting. But Carrier IQ owns a dozen patents, including this one, which to me is much more interesting. This patent indicates what Carrier IQ software could do—not what it does—but it is revealing nonetheless: A …

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Deconstructing Carrier IQ’s Press Release

I couldn’t find this press release on their website, and it’s a couple of weeks old, but I thought it worth deconstructing anyway. My comments in quotes. The rest is from the release. I don’t pretend to have got anything right here, but these might be the starting points for deeper questions. Carrier IQ Says …

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Stuck on Stuxnet

By Jeremy Wagstaff (this is my weekly Loose Wire Service column for newspaper syndication) We’ve reached one of those moments that I like: When we’ll look back at the time before and wonder how we were so naive about everything. In this case, we’ll think about when we thought computer viruses were just things that …

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