Huawei’s Woes Widen, Virus Laden Laptop for Sale, Baltimore Held Hostage

I know. I know.

It has been a long time.

It’s true.

Like many. 2019 has been a bitch of a year. I’ve been behind the 8 Ball so much this year, and the last 3 months are no exception. But, I have been doing my duty and delivering the latest news from the digiwebs on First News 570 with Mark Starling, LIVE, each Thursday morning at 6:43am. You can always listen using the iHeart Radio app.

HUAWEI’S WOES CONTINUE
It’s getting harder and harder for Huawei to win. Ever since the US government announced accusations of Huawei selling encryption technology to Iran, it has just been getting worse. Huawei has been accused of pirating technology from US firm Qualcomm, and now chip manufacturers aren’t supplying the company with microprocessors. Yesterday, ARM which designs chips for the iPhone, Samsung, and other mobile devices has announced it has suspended business with Huawei fearing that it may be under US export laws since some design happens in Austin, Texas and San Jose, California. It’s getting more and more perilous for the company. Further, the UK and Japan aren’t licensing a new 5G phone for their markets.
https://www.theverge.com/2019/5/22/18635326/huawei-arm-chip-designs-business-suspension
https://www.theverge.com/2019/5/22/18635313/huawei-phones-dropped-uk-carrier-ee-5g-mate-20-launch

VIRUS LADEN LAPTOP BEING AUCTIONED FOR OVER 1 MILLION DOLLARS
The technology world can be wild and zany sometimes. If you’re in the market for a new laptop you can bid on a Samsung laptop that’s been purposefully infected with 6 viruses, two of which we’ve covered on First News 570. The auction is a performance art collaboration between artist Guo O Dong and New York Cybersecurity Company, Deep Instinct. The current bid is set at 1.1 million dollars and ends this coming Wednesday. Remember, it is illegal to sell malware for the purpose of causing damage in the United States.
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IN MOMENT OF EMBARRASSMENT, BALTIMORE IT IS BEING HELD HOSTAGE
It’s hard for me to report on this; especially, after we showcased Baltimore in a shining light for having the first organ transplant delivered by drone. Baltimore has had a tough year, two days after Mayor Jack Young took office after disgraced mayor Catherine Pugh, Baltimore’s IT networks were shutdown after being subjected to a ransomware attack. Analysts are predicting weeks before the city’s systems return to normal as water billing, payment systems, email, and the phone system remain offline. Baltimore also doesn’t have an insurance policy to cover ransomware attacks, which could have easily covered the $70,000 the attackers are demanding to have their systems returned to normal.
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Researchers tell Amazon to Stop Selling Rekognition, Elizabeth Warren Wants Execs Liable, and Impossible Whoppers

I’m coming out of my cocoon from the first quarter of the year. Like many 2019-ers, it hasn’t been an easy start to the year. If it’s Thursday morning it’s time tech talk with Mark Starling and the First News 570 crew. We talk AI facials, data breaches, and meat this week. You can listen to us every Thursday morning at 6:43am, LIVE using the iHeart Radio app.

AI RESEARCHERS TELL AMAZON TO STOP SELLING ITS FACIAL RECOGNITION SOFTWARE
Amazon, that Amazon, has been encouraged to stop selling its facial recognition technology to police and other law enforcement agencies. In an open letter published online, researchers from Microsoft, Google, and Facebook have asked Amazon to stop selling Rekognition, its facial recognition technology because it has a higher error rate in identifying dark-skinned and women’s faces. 26 AI researchers have signed the letter citing the possibility of increased profiling and bias against minorities and women.
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Warner Music Signs Algorithm, Estonia Considers AI Judges, Apple to Become Umbrella Corp

I know it’s been a while.

I’ve been spending my days, night, and weekends wrapping a project, but even though I haven’t been making updates, I’ve still been kicking it with Mark Starling and First News 570 each Thursday on the latest and great tech stories. This week was a busy one for tech and we talk about Apple’s new status symbol and show you glimpses of how AI will take over the galaxy.

WARNER MUSIC SIGNS RECORD DEAL WITH ALGORITHM
Yes, even little old me had to repeat this sensational title. WB didn’t actually sign a deal with an algorithm, but they did enter a record contract with Endel Music. Endel is an app that creates custom tracks to help people relax and operate under a better mood. The software layers ambient and white noise for individuals. Warner Brothers entered into a deal with Endel to create 600 short tracks to be added to 20 albums on streaming services. The tracks themselves were created at the click of a button and Endel will split 50/50 with WB on royalties. And…own their masters.
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Millennials Tap for Sex on Valentine’s Day, Russia Unplugs, and Opportunity is Lost

lovesync

Happy Valentine’s Day!!

We kick things off on this morning’s edition of First News on 570 with Russia unplugging from the Internet and a new device designed to help millennials further dull their communications skills.

If it’s Thursday, it’s time for Tech Talk with Mark Starling on First News 570. You can always listen LIVE at 643 am.

DOING SOMETHING I’VE BEEN WANTING TO DO FOR WEEKS, RUSSIA UNPLUGS
Russia is considering the possibility of unplugging itself from the Interwebs. That’s right. The Russian government is thinking about performing a nationwide test in which the country will be disconnected from the greater Internet. This means messages and traffic can only be passed internal to the country. The test is to insure that ISPs can function in case a hostile government (not the US) were to perform cyberwarfare against the nation. The test is scheduled to take place on April 1st, hahaha, with no duration time period.
https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-47198426

UK Police Gives Facials, Security Is no Joke, and Disabled Emojis

Hi Y’all!

January has been a tough year for me. I hope it was better for you.

Anyway, if it is Thursday, it is time for the week’s top tech stories on First News 570 w/Mark Starling. You can tune ins every week on Thursday’s at 643 am.

UK POLICE GET SERIOUS ABOUT SECURITY FORCING PEOPLE TO SUBMIT TO FACIALS
I was planning to be a little more cheery this week on FNO570, but I need to start with some Person of Interest-esque intrigue. We first reported on the UK facial recognition system before it went into operation last Spring. The system is now in operation and the UK has arrested at least one person who was trying to not be recognized by covering his face with his hoodie. Police stopped the man and questioned him, he told the cops to “piss off” a British cursing colloquialism and the police fined the man 90 pounds for public cursing. We are consistently deploying cameras everywhere and ultimately we’ll be surrounding public privacy in the name of safety. It’s only a matter time before we get this tech stateside.
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PRIVACY MIGHT BE AN ILLUSION, BUT SECURITY IS NO JOKE
It’s cold up in Canada right now, and if you’re an investor of the QuadrigaCX, Canada’s largest cryptoechange, you’ve been iced out of your virtual funds. The exchange’s founder, Gerald Cotton, died last year and is the only known person who knew the password. The crypto funds are stored in something called, digital Cold Storage. These are virtual vaults with only one password. And in this case, Cotton had the stuff. It is true, crypto-currency thefts have increased dramatically and last year thefts hit $1.7 billion in thefts which is up 400% from the previous year. The moral of the story. You have to trust someone. Quadriga has hired a ringer to attempt to crack the code, but we’ll wait and see. Meanwhile, Quadriga has filed for creditor protection to keep them from getting sued. Also, meanwhile, some people suspect…that Gerald Cotton may not be dead. Despite the death certificate.
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NOW THE DISABLED CAN COMMUNICATE IN SHORTHAND WITH APPROVED EMOJIS
A total of 230 new emojis have been added to the Unicode set of emojis people can use to communicate on their smartphones. The changes came after Apple complained that the current emoji set doesn’t speak to the experiences of the disabled. The new set of emojis include wheelchairs, prosthetic limbs, canes, guide dogs, and yes, a drop of menstrual blood. The biggest or most controversial addition is the depiction of a woman on her period. The original drawing included a pair of pants marked by blood but was rejected, resulting in the drop of period of blood being used in the future. These updates should arrive in your tech this March.
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Sophia the Robot Wants Baby, Tumblr’s Weak AI, and Facebook is ‘Dust’

sophia-wig

This morning was the AI show on this week’s tech tag up on First News 570 with Mark Starling. We’re getting closer to Christmas and so far, the only thing I’ve gotten is a pair of fancy drawls for my wife. We talk about AI, my lack of ordering online, and regifting this week on First News 570. You can always listen LIVE on Thursdays at 6:43 am.

Apple and Samsung Fined, Cook Warns of Data Industrial Complex, and Trump’s Unsecured Phone

The last several weeks have been challenging. I like October, but when Venus is in retrograde it can be difficult. It was hard to narrow down this week’s tech stories, but here’s what we talked about on First News 570 with Mark Starling. You can listen LIVE every Thursday at 6:43am Eastern.

APPLE, SAMSUNG: FINED FOR SLOW PHONES
An Italian government regulatory body has fined Apple and Samsung for shipping customers “slow” phones and unfair commercial practices. The Italian government cited Apple and Samsung for shipping software updates that cause “serious malfunctions and reduce performance” of older devices. The suspicion came when Apple admitted to slowing down the performance of older phones through updates to iOS because of diminishing battery performance. Samsung plans to appeal their fine because they’ve always reduced software updates that deliver the best performance possible. This fine comes at the same time the French government is investigating Apple for the planned obsolescence of iPhones.
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Amazon AI Discriminates Against Women, Twitter Publishes Trolling Tweets, and Blinders for Humans

If it’s Thursday it means tech time with Mark Starling and the crew at First News 570. This week, we talk about AIs that discriminate, Twitter acknowledging Russian meddling two years, too late, and the technology industry’s latest ridiculous gadget. You can always listen LIVE to me and Mark each Thursday at 6:43 am Eastern.

We gon' whoop that ass...

We gon’ whoop that ass…

NOT SURPRISING ANYONE AT ALL, AMAZON AI IMMEDIATELY DISCRIMINATES AGAINST WOMEN
People might not think so, but the people who are writing the algorithms truly make a difference. AIs should not be allowed to make human decisions. That needs to be repeated. AIs should not be allowed to make human decisions. Amazon gave artificial intelligence a try by using a program to assist in rating job candidates. Last year, the stopped using the tool because it was discriminating against women. There are no silver bullets. Amazon thought they could build a tool that would sift through a hundred resumes and hire the top 5. The problem? Amazon tuned the AI to prefer candidates based upon the past batch of successfully hired candidates. Candidates who are mostly male, and probably mostly white. Amazon created an AI that trained itself to prefer male candidates. To me, that doesn’t sound like artificial intelligence.
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SMART SPEAKER PROVES WHAT EVERYONE ALREADY KNEW: FACEBOOK IS ALWAYS LISTENING

Venus is no Mercury, but it is in retrograde, and is wreaking havoc. The past two weeks have been an emotional drain. From mechanical to professional and personal issues, it’s been a gut check. My only solace is that it’s Thursday, which means I can spend a little bit of time sharing some of the more insane and overhyped stories from the tech industry. This week, Mark and I talk about Facebook, G+, and Bose’s new hearing aid LIVE on First News 570. Remember, to tune in every Thursday LIVE.

Don't Give Venus Any Power

Don’t Give Venus Any Power

SAY WHAT? FDA APPROVES DIY, DIRECT-TO-CONSUMER HEARING AID
I’ll readily admit. Years of listening to rap music at 10 has done a number to my ears. I often find myself asking, “say what?” Earlier this week, the FDA approved a direct-to-consumer hearing aid made by BOSE. BOSE’s device is the first of its kind in that it allows users to fit, program, and control the device without a healthcare provider. The BOSE Hearing Aid is controlled and tuned using a smartphone app by the user. I think this an amazing development that could drive down hearing costs, and help many-a-Gen-Xer when the turn into a Geezer.
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Irish Watchdog Could Fine FB, Amazon Accused of Poaching, and First Presidential Alert Goes Out Tweets to Follow

Facebook can’t catch a break, and after this latest breach, it could be fined. We talk about Facebook’s next steps and more on this morning’s technology segment with Mark Starling on First News 570. You can always listen LIVE to us banter about tech and more every Thursday at 6:43 am Eastern.

IRISH CONSUMER PROTECTION AGENCY LAUNCHES INVESTIGATION AFTER FACEBOOK’S LATEST BREACH
Last week, Facebook announced that approximately 50 million user accounts were exposed to hackers. Facebook designated the Irish Data Protection Commission as its one-stop shop for all policy related matters in the European Union. Unfortunately for Facebook though, if the Irish determine that the breach was because of a lack of controls inside of the Big Blue App, the EU can fine the social network up to 4% of its global revenues. Facebook is having a tough time this year and there’s still more year to come. In addition to the 50 million users who’s account were compromised, Facebook automatically logged another 40 million users out from its services. Guess what? I was one of that 40 million.
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FIRST PRESIDENTIAL ALERT SUCCESSFUL, TWEETS TO FOLLOW
If your phone battery was fully charged or plugged in yesterday, you should have received the first ever, nationwide presidential alert on your phone. Yesterday, at 2:18PM EDT, FEMA sent out an alert to every man, woman, child, and pet’s smartphone using its Integrated Public Alert and Warning System. The system is specifically designed to give the White House the ability to dispatch a nationwide alert or warning to all citizens in case of catastrophic disaster. How come we didn’t receive this warning in 2016?
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IN GLOBAL FIGHT TO THE DEATH FOR ONLINE RETAIL EBAY ACCUSES AMAZON OF POACHING
It’s a fight to the death. Amazon’s Jeff Bezos was recently named the world’s richest man, Amazon raises its own minimum wage to $15 per hour, and EBay accuses Amazon of stealing its sellers from its platform. It is hard to beat Amazon, but the former auctioneer is accusing Amazon of directly soliciting its sellers with offers to sell its products on Amazon’s landing page. EBay said it was alerted of the situation about 10 days ago after a seller reached out to the company after being contacted by an Amazon employee under false pretenses. Amazon of course denies any wrong doing and is launching an internal investigation. For deals.
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