This week, Elon Musk tweeted a picture of a humanoid-looking robot, that he says Tesla will be building starting next year, with the eye towards using them for constructing his Boring Company hyperloop tunnels. Leo isn't so sure that will happen. Although Boston Dynamics has been working for ten years on a robot that can now practically run like a parkour athlete, this kind of sophistication takes time. So we won't be seeing robots on construction sites any time soon. And he doesn't think we're on the verge of Cylons either.
This Week in Tech News
Hackers are bragging that they have breached the servers of T-Mobile and have managed to grab the customer data of over 100 million customers, including social security numbers, driver's license numbers, IMEI data, and more. And they are selling it. T-Mobile says they have plugged the break and are "investigating" it, but Leo says this is a mess for T-Mobile if proven true. And according to experts who have seen samples of the data, it looks legit.
The IBM Computer turns 40 today. A "skunkworks" project out of Boca Raton, FL, the IBM 5150 personal computer had off-the-shelf parts and MS-DOS as its operating system, which Microsoft bought for that very reason. The 5150 started at around $1500, with an Intel 8088 processor at 400 MHz and 16KB of RAM. The floppy disk drive was optional.
It was less than a year that the IBM clone was born and the computer industry was off to the races.
Zillow, and its competitor Opendoor, are both on a spending spree and they want to buy your home. Called "iBuying," the site is buying and flipping homes for profit. Sales are expected to reach several billion annually, but Leo says it's unclear if this iBuying trend will pay off.
With the coming iOS15.0 update, Apple is going to be scanning your photos to look for missing and exploited child activity. Teaming up with the National Center of Missing and Exploited Children, the company will be scanning user photos on the iPhone and iCloud Photos and creating "fingerprints" that can be compared with known child porn images in a database kept by NCMEC. Leo has mixed emotions about it because while it's a good thing that Apple can offer a tool to protect and rescue kids from child porn.
Apple's new child safety policy, which will enable the company to search user's iCloud and phone photo libraries for child porn, has met with a lot of push back from their users. Mostly citing privacy concerns. But Leo says that the pushback is largely due to misunderstanding what Apple plans to do.
In a shocking turn of events in China, a citizen sued after visiting a zoo and being forced to have his face and fingerprints scanned. And he won, in China! Leo says that China is doing a better job reigning in Big Tech than we are.
Over 100 navy vessels from various countries, including Russia and the US, have had their GPS location hacked to make it look like they are unlawfully entering a nation's waters. Leo says that the hackers have been quite busy with not only messing with military ship GPS but also commercial traffic. And it has governments concerned that they could accidentally cause an international incident or even conflict.
"Ängström" is a word that represents 1/10,000,000,000,000th of a centimeter. That's pretty small. Why do we care? Leo says it's because it's the new measure of the latest processors, known as 20A processors. So when you upgrade your PC, you're going to be hearing that term. The more transistors you can get on a processor, the more powerful they become. Up until recently, processors had been plateaued due to Moore's Law (which stated that transistors would double every 18 months). That had caused chip makers to put multiple processors on a chip. But we're at the end of Moore's Law now.
Actress Scarlett Johannson is suing Disney over their decision to simultaneously stream BLACK WIDOW at the same time the film has been released in theaters. Her position is that Disney violated her contract, which pays her most of her salary based on box office receipts. By releasing the film also on Disney+, even though it was behind the premium tier, she contends it cost her millions.
Emma Stone is also considering doing the same thing over CRUELLA.