This Week in Tech News

Elon Musk Demonstrates Neural Link Technology

Elon Musk's Neural Link Technology

Episode 1724

Elon Musk demonstrated a brain/computer interface called Neural Link today. Testing it out on a pig, the interface sends and receives information via Bluetooth. The first step is being able to read brain waves directly. Leo says that 10-100 years from now, could be commonplace. 

Social Media Is Becoming a Tool for Propaganda, Pushing Towards the Extremes

TikTok

Episode 1722

Leo says that because Social Media algorithms are designed to keep followers engaged, the various platforms are actually becoming tools for propaganda (no matter which side of an issue you're on), pushing people towards extremes. Can we use our own common sense to avoid the trap while online? Leo says we can, but the algorithms are making it difficult.

"Vishing" is the latest online scam to steal your company login information

VISHING

Episode 1721

Much like phishing and spear-phishing, VISHING is the latest online scam designed to steal your logins. Only VISHING uses voicemail to do it, according to the FBI and the Cyber Security Agency (CISA). They are targeted attacks on employees of corporations using voicemail to get users working at home to call back and then use social engineering to steal VPN credentials. Check out Brian Krebs' article here.

Microsoft Surprises with New Tablet-like Announcement

Duo

Episode 1719

Microsoft surprised everyone this week with the announcement of a two-screen mobile device, that Leo describes the Surface DUO as a kind of folding notebook you'd get at a bookstore. Like a pocket-sized portfolio or Moleskine. It has two 6" screens that when unfolded creates an 8" diagonal tablet running Android. The screens can work in concert or independently for multi-tasking.  Leo stresses that Microsoft insists the DUO is NOT a phone, but an internet-enabled device that can also make phone calls.

RIP Frances Allen

Frances Allen

Episode 1718

You may not know her name, but Frances Allen passed away this week. She is responsible for the software used to compile computer code and optimize it into programming. A legend in the computer community. After retiring, she turned her attention towards enabling young girls to see careers in math, science, and computing. 

TikTok to be Banned From Revenue in US Starting September

Tik Tok

Episode 1717

TikTok will be banned on September 20th in the United States, according to the White House. Leo says that technically, the ban is only on money that is transferred out of the US to China, including ad revenue.  The President has also given Microsoft the OK to buy TikTok and they have until Sept 20 to get a deal done. Not only that, but Trump wants the US to receive a cut of the deal if it happens. 

Leo Uses TikTok

TikTok

Episode 1716

Leo downloaded and installed TikTok today, to get the experience before the US bans it. Is he worried about his data getting grabbed by the PRC? Not at all. Leo says it's the most creative and fun app going right now. TikTok has been trying to avoid the ban by having a US CEO, hired over 10,000 US jobs, and even courting Microsoft to buy their US operations. But the White House seems in earnest to ban it.