Sunday, October 26, 2014

Ask, “Who benefits?” It's election time again here in the US too. Will we see the electronic version of “hanging chad?”
Hackers Target Ukraine's Election Website
Hackers attacked Ukraine's election commission website Saturday on the eve of parliamentary polls, officials said, but they denied Russian reports that the vote counting system itself had been put out of action.
A report on Russia's state news agency RIA Novosti quoted a statement on the personal website of the Ukrainian prosecutor general saying that the electronic vote counting system was out of order and that Sunday's ballots would have to be counted by hand.
The commission spokesman, Kostyantyn Khivrenko, called the RIA Novosti report a "fake".
In another possible sign of cyber tensions, the Ukrainska Pravda news website on Friday reported that outdoor video screens across Kiev were briefly hacked.
The screens, which are used for advertising, including pre-election political ads, reportedly started to display "scary and horrible images," the report said.
Engineers went out "to physically unplug" the screens, according to the report.
The report could not be confirmed, but footage on YouTube purporting to capture the incident showed a street screen abruptly switching to footage of destroyed buildings and dead bodies, as well as the images of two nationalist politicians running for parliament, with the words "war criminals".

Yet another reason to avoid PowerPoint.
Security Flaw in PowerPoint Allows Hackers to Gain Control
A security flaw has been found in Microsofts’ PowerPoint after hackers exploited the service to gain control of computer systems.
A security advisor on Microsofts website stated that so far the attacks have been limited however, those who have been affected have lost control of their computers completely.
For the hackers to have access, users have to open the corrupted file which is most often downloaded from the web. Currently, Microsoft are warning people to not download any Power point presentations at this time.

Can't wait to Google your house!
Google's Nest Acquires Smart Home Hub Startup Revolv To Control Every Device In Your Home
Nest, best known for its “learning thermostat,” has made another step into being the center of the smart home world. Today it announced it has acquired smart home hub startup Revolv.
Colorado-based Revolv made a hardware hub with a bunch of radios packed inside to make all the various smart home devices talk to each other. Through the Revolv app, you could sync up smart home interactions.
“Nest bought a team of people knowledgable in the interoperability of a wide variety of radio technology and software protocols in order to make integration easier for partners and customers,” said Forrester analyst Frank Gillett.
… These new partnerships will do things like allow Nest to better know when family members are away from home with family app Life360 or control your thermostat from your Pebble watch.

Business opportunity! Drone swatters (repackaged flyswatters) This one has an umbilical cord, so it can't fly to Afghanistan and back, but should be fine for SWAT or special forces.
New Drone Fits in Your Pocket, Flies for Two Hours
Anybody who's ever flown a rotary wing drone will look at the stats of CyPhy Works' new Pocket Flyer drone and be amazed. It fits in your pocket and weights a mere 80 grams. It'll fly continuously for two hours or more, sending back high quality HD video the entire time. What's the catch? There isn't one, except for the clever thing that grants all of CyPhy's UAVs their special powers: a microfilament tether that unspools the drone and keeps it constantly connected to communications and power.

For my student game addicts...
Waste Away Your Life Playing All The Games On wants to be the new home of browser-based games, those free Flash games which are currently spread across the Web without any sense of order or meaning. Pong acts as a Pinterest-like platform, with users invited to create boards and add games from around the Web to these categorized collections.
Anyone can play the games posted to Pong, without any need to sign up for an account. These passing visitors can simply click on the game they want to play and, assuming they have Adobe Flash Player installed, they can play away to their heart’s content.

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