Tag Archives: ZDNet

Dark side of the Jedi

Yes, I guess that George Lucas really had no idea that this would hold for well over 45 years, but that happens when you become the real innovator. In this we recognise innovators, but the path of one is often dangerous, perilous and it only works when the competition is at your heels. Consider that Star Wars came out when we had The Omen, Taxi Driver, All the presidents men, Rocky, Saturday Night Fever, the Duellists. All excellent movies, all driving the others to do better, that is why it works, so when I see “reversing the Trump-era award to Microsoft Corp and announcing a new contract expected to include its rival Amazon.com and possibly other cloud players” I merely wonder how stupid Trump actually was. To give $10,000,000,000 to Microsoft when they screw up their console position and hand the number two place to Nintendo with the weakest of all consoles, only to likely lose again in the future to the Amazon Luna and possibly even to Netflix? How delusional can you become? Microsoft tried to attack the Apple tablet market and failed miserably again and again, they blew their mobile market and they are trying to create waves for their Azure market, that is the player we want for the U.S. Defense Department? This all whilst we get a day ago “Microsoft has “paused” SQL Server in its Windows Containers project. Microsoft advises anyone interested in running SQL Server in a container to use the Linux root instead”, so basically the two non entries (Google and Amazon) were a better solution off the bat?

So, this Jedi (aka the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure) is off to a rocky start. I had never expected to be any commander in chief so delusional that they would hand the contract to one player, all whilst better solutions (in the worst case merely equal) would be considered without proper vetting? I am not stating to merely give it to Amazon or Google, that is why vetting is an important process, yet in all that, Reuters (at https://www.reuters.com/article/us-microsoft-pentagon-jedi/pentagon-hits-reset-on-trumps-10-billion-cloud-deal-welcoming-new-players-idUSKCN2EC1YY) gives us “The company cited a 2019 book that reported Trump had directed the Defense Department to “screw Amazon” out of the JEDI contract”, is this how Americans see their national defence, as an ego driver? It would be one thing if Microsoft is the better party, but that hasn’t be the case for some time. 

So when I see “the plan would likely involve a direct award for “urgently needed” capabilities and then a “full and open” competition for multiple suppliers by early 2025”, which we get from John Sherman, acting chief information officer for the Defense Department. My issue here is that when I see ‘urgently needed’, I also remember the joke (not a funny one) that the Zumwalt class represents and the billions spend there, then there are a few more projects, all with pressing needs. And whilst we are getting towards it, the entire Kaseya and Solarwinds debacle shows the larger pressing matter. Security matters! And the matter of security can never be properly investigated if it is appointed to one player, one debatable player mind you. I am not stating that security at Google or Amazon is better, but the Exchange issues, which we get from ZDNet in April shows us “Four zero-day vulnerabilities in Microsoft Exchange Server are being actively exploited by state-sponsored threat groups and others to deploy backdoors and malware in widespread attacks”, this doesn’t mean that Google and/or Amazon is better. But the debate is on and Microsoft lost top dog and pole position years ago, they are merely in it to remain mediocre, all for the good of the board of directors. They lost to Apple (tablets), then they lost to Google (with Bing), then they lost to Amazon (web services and SaaS) and now surpassed by TikTok (video against China), that is an impressive fail rate. Consider that Bing has a market share of 2.71%, which against Google with 91.95% is slightly too funny for words. 

But this is not about Microsoft, it is about Jedi (all these funny acronyms). So when we consider the dark side of that forceless solution (by Microsoft) and we need to wonder about “the Defense Department also announced its plans for a new multi-cloud initiative known as the Joint Warfighter Cloud Capability, or JWCC. It must provide capabilities at all three classification levels — Unclassified, Secret and Top Secret — and parity of services across all classification levels; integrated cross-domain solutions; global availability including at the tactical edge; and enhanced cybersecurity controls, according to the Pentagon”, not the intent, but the investigative presumption of ‘enhanced cybersecurity controls’, both Solarwinds and Kaseya showed us that and this field is still widely in development, and sources like business wire are setting the Marke that cloud security will double over the next 4 years, a stage of increased visibility will both increase security and criminal activities, the winner remains unknown at present, even if we acknowledge that REvil has the upper hand, we have no way of knowing what happens tomorrow,  if security comes from innovators there is every chance that Amazon or Google will get there before Microsoft will, even Apple has a better chance of showing innovation than Microsoft in the cloud atmosphere at present. The fact of what happens next will be out soon enough, yet my mind wonders why anyone would be stupid enough to award national defence to anyone without proper vetting.  So when we accept that it was meant as “part of a broader digital modernisation of the Pentagon aimed at making it more technologically agile”, wouldn’t you want to vet to broaden the application of data, the security of the system and the application of security towards data, users and access? There is a reason that SELinux had roots going back to the NSA, this they all wanted to throw away? And the media is merely reporting the news, not questioning that time line? Why is that?

Only the agile and versatile remain superpowers, and the former president was willing to hand over 50% of THAT equation? So consider that what was JEDI (Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure) could have become the Darth (Defence Application Reprehensive Technology Hype) defence system. 

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Innovative?

Yup we heard it all. Quotes like ‘Apple is widely considered as the #1 innovative company in the world’, as well as ‘While most companies are lucky to come up with one major innovation, these three continue to develop breakthroughs and don’t seem to be slowing down any time soon’ and Apple it was to some extend true, especially when Steve Jobs was still mortal, around and kicking. Since then they only gave us the Apple AirPods, which is true innovation. The rest is iteration. Microsoft is calling the Surface innovation, wrong! I see it as iteration and a weak copy from the iPad to begin with, it goes on and on, IBM has the Quantum computing cloud, but that has been pretty much it, beyond that most are merely iteration and weirdly enough, they seem to focus on what can be iterated, not innovated. 

iPad fling
I have had a fling with my iPad going back to 2011 when the first one came out. It was a present from me to me when I got into graduate school at UTS. I saw all these eager students with a laptop in one hand like it was a serve platter running from corner to corner trying to find a powerpoint, as such I decided on the iPad, the very first one, which had 64GB, cellular and WiFi. I was happy as a puppy with a fresh bone. This would continue until 2020 when it started to show issues and most parts would no longer be updated, it was too old. There were no tears, with 10 years 24:7 service it had earned its keep at least twice over and my storage never exceeded 50%, the 64GB was a true achievement. As such in 2020 I updated to the iPad Air, now with 256GB, a more powerful processor, higher resolution and that fling feeling came back in a rush. 

Yet the market has changed, this is fair enough and I see the iPad Air as an iteration, not innovation. It was this step that I saw today that innovation was absent, or more precisely absent from the iPad systems for too much. Now, in the larger scheme I do not care, I am still really happy with what it has, and as pretty much all of it is back, I have little to complain about.

There is this one thing
It is there that I saw innovation, where none was and I do not know why Apple did not see this. You see apps, games (free to play) are all nice, but they need to get their money (as much as possible) from advertisers. As such it does not matter how it is setup, the increasing amount of advertisements, a setting that is beyond the borders of harassment are also grabbing my Bluetooth speaker when I am trying to enjoy music whilst playing a game, and it is there that I saw the lack of innovation. I wonder why Apple never looked at the setting to make the bluetooth an exclusive to for example the Music app. I cannot fault app makers to rely on advertisement, but when your speakers get hijacked every other minute, you either listen to music or nothing at all, why did Apple not see this, or even see this coming?

When we have YouTube playing and the advertiser grabs/pushes through the same speaker as YouTube, it is fine, I get that, but I have a problem in the other event when I play a game muted, but the advertiser will hijack/obtains your speaker. Did Apple not see that coming? So whilst we saw in June 2020 ‘13 new innovative technologies and features unveiled at WWDC20’, Bluetooth innovation was absent, Bluetooth iteration too. As such, whilst we herald the addition of “New cycling directions in Maps take into account elevation, how busy a street is, and whether there are stairs along the route”, we see iteration, the natural consequence of what came before, not iteration, which is supposed to mean “the practical implementation of ideas that result in the introduction of new goods or services or improvement in offering goods or services”, yet here we see the problem ‘or improvement in offering goods or services’, the problem there is that ‘improvement’ is now on a sliding scale, especially in software where a lot of improvements are iterations, not innovations. 

Is this me?
Yes, it probably is, but in that same light, there is a larger group of people that see the addition of one new chip as iteration, not innovation. Marketing departments globally have ‘abused’ the word ‘innovation’ to the degree that we see it as a debatable word at best. This is pure in us, driven through the advertisers and the larger brands need to see that innovation is no longer a calling to customers, it is a calling to investigate the brand in just how loyal one needs to be. In this I will also admit that it might not merely be marketing, but the brief that their board of director gives out to marketing, no matter how you slice it. As such what information to trust, and that is fair enough. Yet the stage we see is larger, larger than even I can consider, simply because I am not the greatest expert in the field and there is also the stage that I do not look everywhere. It becomes increasingly difficult where we see the Internet of things (IoT), consider that a device is suddenly used in a field that it has never been used in, this (to me) is innovation, not iteration and that field is in motion, in rapid motion in all directions, as such what might be innovation is seen as iteration in the way it is brought to us, it is understandable that we see this wrong, but it is unfair to the player bringing it. We can blame it on their marketing, but that is not fair either. As such you need to wonder where the threshold lies and here we have a nice example. Are the Bravia XR TV’s (2021) iteration or innovation? We might say one, but consider that speakers have to go somewhere and Sony is the first one to put them behind the LCD display, does that make it innovation or iteration? I am not certain, but they call it innovation. Is it true or false? I actually do not have a clear answer, yet my view of what is would call it iteration, an iteration I desire, but an iteration none the less. 

It goes deeper and ZDNet gave us that part in January 2021 with a list of ARK Big Ideas 2021, which would include the following:

  • Deep Learning
  • The Reinvention of the Data Center
  • Virtual Worlds
  • Digital Wallets
  • Bitcoin Fundamentals
  • Bitcoin: Preparing For Institutions
  • Electric Vehicles (EVs)
  • Automation
  • Autonomous Ride-Hailing
  • Delivery Drones
  • Orbital Aerospace
  • 3D Printing
  • Long Read Sequencing
  • Multi-Cancer Screening
  • Cell and Gene Therapy: Generation 2

When I see this list, we see deep learning, Bitcoin fundamentals, and Long Read Sequencing and in these cases we expect iteration. 

In case of deep learning (often presented as AI) we see the definition “Deep learning (also known as deep structured learning) is part of a broader family of machine learning methods based on artificial neural networks with representation learning. Learning can be supervised, semi-supervised or unsupervised”, yet my issue is with the part ‘Learning can be supervised’, as I personally see it to be deep learning, it needs to be semi-supervised or unsupervised, if not it is merely adapted scripting. I will skip Bitcoin fundamentals, it is in my mind an iterative field, but in that I must admit there is a lot I do not know and I never cared to learn it, as such if someone states to me that I was wrong, it would be a fair assessment, but to see innovation paired with a word like ‘fundamentals’ is weird on too many levels. It becomes a different stage when we consider Long Read Sequencing, I get it data is in evolution and transformation and these sequencings are often linked to biometrics, a field that is very much innovation, even the iterations tend to be innovation, so I see the flaw in my thinking here. Yet it compares to naught when we consider ‘Long-read human genome sequencing and its applications’ by Glennis A. Logsdon, Mitchell R. Vollger & Evan E. Eichler. It was published less than a year ago and it took almost that long for me to get the gist of it (armed with a thesaurus). As such when we see Oxford Nanopore Technologies and its applications we do clearly see a large field of innovation, not merely in biometrics, but in an adapted path towards a string of devices all the way from manufacturer to user, where we see an optional path towards identifying digital forensics, I wonder if Mr or Mrs Technology Nanopore from Oxford considered that part of the equation. In a stage where the IoT is in nonstop motion, setting a chain of identifying hardware and connections in a string, an extremely long string might be (for now) the only way to go and that will be (as I personally see it) a much larger stage in digital forensics to find the paths towards organised crime and disorganised corporate crime soon enough. When parts of a path are identified we would optionally see an identifier of non repudiation. Only that person, and that person could have taken that road. Which might also more quickly identify a larger strain of click farms. Not claiming the innovation, merely stating that this might be a path worth considering. At present some will discard the issue with data size, yet I come from an age where DEC had a Winchester drive with 250,000,000 bytes, which was the size of a work-desk and 50 times the weight, all for the price of a house in 11 specific cities in the USA. This happened within a career, as such do not dismiss the idea, as size becomes ever debatable, as speed is increasing in the better hardware, the application of ONT could go a long way and in directions the makers never considered, or at least not openly considered. 

It might be me, anyway, I am meeting up with an old friend (Gaius Julius Caesar) who is giving me the lowdown on his campaign in Gaul, with my rusty Latin, it will take all weekend, so let’s see if I can afford a nice bottle of Italian wine. Have fun!

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Feel free to lose control

Yup, we all have that. You, me, pretty much everyone. Even the Catholic cleric in [censored], should you doubt that, ask any choir boy there. So when the BBC gave us ‘Facebook sued for ‘losing control’ of users’ data’, I merely shrugged and went ‘Meh’. You see, it is not about “the case against the technology giant, expected to last for at least three years, will argue a “loss of control” over users’ personal data warrants individual compensation”, which is hypocrite on a few levels, we see people handing over data and fact to complete strangers in Facebook and plenty of other social media paths. We laugh at “Coolum resident Essena O’Neill, 19, said she was paid up to $2,000 for the posts, which show her posing with products and often in revealing positions. With more than 600,000 followers on Instagram and 260,000 on YouTube, Ms O’Neill has deleted many of her original photos and re-captioned others with more honest descriptions” (ABC, 2015). We also get (two weeks ago) ““I accidentally posted a picture on Instagram of my wine glass and I was naked,” she said whilst nervously laughing. Then, she went on to explain that you could actually see her naked body in the reflection of the wine glass”, is anyone buying this? Social media has been used on a huge number of settings revealing ‘accidentally’ facts that normally do not get to see the light of day, and in all this we are given ““loss of control” over users’ personal data”? Go cry me a river! In the mean time, did anyone see Alexander Nix, Julian Wheatland, Rebekah Mercer, or Steve Bannon in the dock of a courtroom in any of the hit countries? In this the quote “harvesting of Facebook users’ personal information by third-party apps was at the centre of the Cambridge Analytica privacy scandal” applies, a third party app, was there any documented agreement, or documented acceptance of the harvesting of personal data? I do not see Microsoft in the dock in court over their exchange failure that had hit 250,000 businesses, so why not? And when we see “Cambridge Analytica’s app on Facebook had harvested the data of people who interacted with it – and that of friends who had not given consent” did anyone consider putting the board of directors of Cambridge Analytica in prison? I wonder how far we have strayed from the flock of convictions to go after the money and not the transgressors. I do get it, it is a rule or Torts, the mere “go where the money is” is not a wrong setting, but in this setting all the blame on Facebook seems wrong. They are not without fault, I get that, but to see a reference to Journalist Peter Jukes giving us “leading the action, claims his data was compromised”, so how was his data compromised? What evidence is there? In turn I have equal issues with “The Information Commissioner’s Office investigation into these issues, which included seizing and interrogating Cambridge Analytica’s servers, found no evidence that any UK or EU users’ data was transferred by [app developer] Dr [Aleksandr] Kogan to Cambridge Analytica”, I wonder how far backup investigation went, in turn the setting of ‘no evidence that any UK or EU users’ data was transferred’ is almost preposterous, the data was collected, as such it went somewhere, the fact that the Information Commissioner’s Office couldn’t find that part is mere icing on the cake of Cambridge Analytica. In addition, when we see “Mr Jukes told BBC News it was not about “where the data went” but rather “that Facebook didn’t care”. “They didn’t look after it,” he said.” Can this be proven? ‘Didn’t care’ is subjective and presumptive, we can agree that security measures failed, yet ‘They didn’t look after it’ is equally unproven, and these people are not going after the people of Cambridge Analytica as THEY transgressed on the data. As such as we look at Eton boy Alexander Nix, in the setting of “Nix agreed to a disqualifying undertaking prohibiting him from running U.K. limited companies for seven years after permitting companies to offer potentially unethical services, while denying any wrongdoing”, he got a mere slap on the hand, with a mandatory 7 year vacation all whilst we are told ‘denying any wrongdoing’, in addition there is “agreeing to delete previously obtained data”, a 2019 agreement, so where was the data all this time? Let’s be clear, Facebook has made blunders, huge ones, yet in light of the fact that Microsoft gets a mere fine and the issues is closed after that, why keep on going after Facebook? When we see ZDNet give us ‘Microsoft Exchange Server attacks: ‘They’re being hacked faster than we can count’, says security company’ two weeks ago (at https://www.zdnet.com/article/microsoft-exchange-server-attacks-theyre-being-hacked-faster-than-we-can-count-says-security-company/), what gives, why are they not being sued for setting a dangerous precedence on corporate information? We go after Huawei without evidence, we ignore alleged criminals and their app transgressions with our data, but it is fine to go after Facebook whilst ignoring the massive flaw that is Microsoft? So what gives?

So yes, we can lose control all we like, but if we hamper the courts with empty cases that are set on emotion, all whilst people like Alexander Nix, Julian Wheatland, Rebekah Mercer, and Steve Bannon are allowed to return to positions and try again? And what about Cambridge Analytica? As it was soon thereafter acquired by? The only reason I see to acquire Cambridge Analytica is because of hardware, because of software and because of data, so who is looking into that, preferably all before we lose time slapping Facebook around? I see very little after 2018, but perhaps Peter Jukes is too busy to see were his alleged compromised data optionally went. 

So whilst we giggle on statements like “I accidentally posted a picture on Instagram of my wine glass and I was naked”, we see a setting where a large group of people are using social media for all kind of things, the limelight most of all and in this we need to separate the real issues from the fictive cash cows. In this, did you wonder if the people are realising that Wired gave us a mere hour ago “collaboration platforms like Discord and Slack have taken up intimate positions in our lives, helping maintain personal ties despite physical isolation. But their increasingly integral role has also made them a powerful avenue for delivering malware to unwitting victims—sometimes in unexpected ways” (at https://www.wired.com/story/malware-discord-slack-links/) and that is a mere tip of the iceberg, a massively large one. How many apps are a gateway to YOUR system? So when we take notice of “hackers have integrated Discord into their malware for remote control of their code running on infected machines, and even to steal data from victims”, as such in that case it is not the nude reflection shot that matters, it is the wineglass porn that some people decided not to post that is out there for everyone to see. Consider the words by Stephen Fry on 2014, when he said “The best way to prevent nude pictures online, is to never pose nude”, or something according to those lines and he is right, the best social media is the boring one, where you just say hi and connect to relatives. But the limelight is for some just too appealing and to give everyone the lowdown on all your needs and that is what players like Cambridge Analytica were banking on. As such, when we add that light, that spotlight, what data of Peter Jukes was transgressed on and in light of the Exchange server issues, the Cisco issues and the larger stage of interconnecting apps, can it even be proven that it was Facebook? 

I’ll buy popcorn for that court case, it should be fun.

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An almost funny thing

I saw an article at the BBC and I will get to that in a moment, but it reminded me of a situation that happened in 2010. I needed a new laptop and I was looking in a shop at their Collection of laptops. A man came to me and was trying to convince me just how amazing this laptop was. My inner demon was grinning, I get it, the man was enthusiastic, he was giving the numbers, but in all this, did he realise what he was saying? I am not doubting the man’s skills, he was doing a good job, I was however in IT and had been there for 30 years, so I have pretty much seen it all, and there it was, my little demon, on my right shoulder calling me ‘pussy’. So as the man stated ‘this laptop has a one terabyte hard-drive, can you even imagine ho much that is?’, I could not resist and my response was ‘Yup, that would fit roughly 10% of my porn collection’, his jaw dropped to the ground, his eyes almost popped, the demon inside me stated ‘Nice!’ Actually, it was not quite true, it would only fit a rough 0.32114%. It was the impact of the shock factor. You see, there is a hidden agenda there, when you (appropriately) use the technique, you get to see the real salesperson and that was what I needed. He was thrown, but he recomposed and continued giving me the goods on the laptop, I bought that laptop roughly 132 seconds later.

So today I saw ‘The Rise of extortionware’ (at https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-56570862), here I notice “where hackers embarrass victims into paying a ransom”, it is not new, it is not even novel. I will also give you the second game after the people involved get arrested, they will demand anonymity and any bleeding heart judge will comply. I state that these people will be handed the limelight so that the people that faced ransomware attacks can take their frustration out of these people. But that remains wishful thinking. So next we get “Experts say the trend towards ransoming sensitive private information could affect companies not just operationally but through reputation damage. It comes as hackers bragged after discovering an IT Director’s secret porn collection.” I have the question was it a private or a company computer? You see, sone focus on the boobies, just what the advertisers on Twitter hope for, they want the click bitches, it makes them money. It is time that we set the larger stage, you see the entire mess would be smaller if Cisco and Microsoft had done a proper job. OK, I apologise, Cisco does a proper job, but some things slip through and in combination with Microsoft exchange servers it is not slipping through, it is a cyber hole the size an iceberg created on the Titanic and we need to set a much larger stage. So when we see “Thanks God for [named IT Director]. While he was [masturbating] we downloaded several hundred gigabytes of private information about his company’s customers. God bless his hairy palms, Amen!”, it seemingly answers that he might keep it on a corporate computer, or he uses his private computer for company stuff. Yet in that same light the hacker should not be allowed any anonymity, we all get to see who the hacker is. If there is something to be learned it is see with “Hackers are now actually searching the data for information that can be weaponised. If they find anything that is incriminating or embarrassing, they’ll use it to leverage a larger pay-out. These incidents are no longer simply cyber-attacks about data, they are full-out extortion attempts” There are two sides

  1. The station of ALWAYS ONLINE needs to change, there needs to be an evolving gateway of anti hack procedures and a stage of evolving anti hack routers and monitoring software. You think that Zoom is an option?
    Tom’s Guide gave us less than 2 weeks ago “More than a dozen security and privacy problems have been found in Zoom”, as well as “Zoom’s ease of use has made it easy for troublemakers to “bomb” open Zoom meetings. Information-security professionals say Zoom’s security has had a lot of holes, although most have been fixed over the past few year”, so whilst you contemplate ‘most have been fixed’, consider that not all are fixed and that is where the problem goes from somewhat to enormous. Well over 20% of the workforce works at home, has zoom meetings and that is how cyber criminals get the upper hand (as well as through disgruntled employees), a change in mindset is only a first station.
  2. Remember that Australian? (Julian Assange) We were told that soon there would be some leaks on issues on banks (Wall Street) then it suddenly became silent, now some will say that it is a bluff, but in light of the meltdown in 2008, I am not so certain, I reckon that some have ways to show the hackers who they are and they profit by not doing that. Can I prove this? Absolutely not. It is speculation, but when you look at the timeline, my speculation makes sense. 
  3. The third side is optionally the second side as the second side might not be a real side. When we see “Hackers are now actually searching the data for information that can be weaponised. If they find anything that is incriminating or embarrassing, they’ll use it to leverage a larger pay-out. These incidents are no longer simply cyber-attacks about data, they are full-out extortion attempts”, the underlying station is ‘information that can be weaponised’ and the IT sector is helping them.

How did I get there? The cloud is not as secure as some state, and the salespeople need to take notice. Business Insider gave us about 6 months ago “70% of Companies Storing Data With Cloud Companies Hacked or Breached”, see the link we are now slowly getting presented? 

In the OSI model, we see layers 3-7 (layer 8 is the user). So as some have seen the issues from Cisco, Microsoft and optionally Zoom, we see a link of issues from layer 3 through to layer 7 ALL setting a dangerous stage. Individually there is no real blame and their lawyers will happily confirm that, but when we see security flaw upon security flaw, there is a larger stage of dangers and we need to take notice. And here the dangers become a lot more interesting when we consider the Guardian yesterday when we saw “Intelligence value of SolarWinds hacking of then acting secretary Chad Wolf is not publicly known”, what else is not publicly known? How many media outlets ignored the Cisco matter, how come ZDNet is one of the few giving us “it’s not releasing patches for some of the affected devices that reached end of life” less than 8 weeks ago. Again I say Cisco did the right thing by informing its customers close to immediately, yet when we see “More than 247,000 Microsoft Exchange servers are yet to be patched against the CVE-2020-0688 post-auth remote code execution (RCE) vulnerability impacting all Exchange Server versions under support” (source: bleepingcomputers.com) as far as I can see, a lot of the media ignored it, but they will shout and repeat the dangers of Huawei, without being shown actual evidence, and I state here, that unless we make larger changes, the extortion path will evolve and become a lot larger. With 70% of cloud systems getting hacked or breached, a large chunk of the Fortune 500 will pay too much to keep quiet and who gets to pay for that? There is a rough 99.867765% chance that its board members will not, it might be speculatively, so please prove me wrong.

A stage where the needs of the consumers changes in a stage where the corporations are not ready to adjust and all whilst the IT salespeople have that golden calf that does everything and make you coffee as well. Adjustments are needed, massive adjustments are needed and we need to make them now before the cybercriminals are in control of our IT needs and that is not mere speculation, when you see flaw after flaw and too little is done as too many are the victim of its impact is a serious breach and it has been going on for some time, but now it is seemingly out in the light and too many are doing too little and as we laugh at “God bless his hairy palms, Amen!” Consider that stage, and now consider that they invade a financial institution, these are clever criminals, they do not empty your account, they merely take $1, perhaps $1 every other month, this implies that they are looking at a $16,000,000 every two months. And this is merely one bank, one in a thousand banks, some a lot bigger than the Australian Commonwealth bank and lets face it, the fact that layer 3 to layer 7 is leaky in hundreds of thousands of customers, do you really think that banks are off-limits? Do you really think that this is a simple hick-up or that the scenery is changing this quickly by people claiming that it will be fixed in no-time? 

We need massive changes and we need them a lot sooner than we think.

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Not for minors

OK, this is not the most subtle article I have ever written, but at times subtle just doesn’t do the story any justice, it happens. So this is a question to parents “If you have a daughter between 22-32, and she looks like Laura Vandervoort, Olivia Wilde, or Alexina Graham. Can I please fuck the bejesus out of her vagina?” To be honest, I don’t really need to, but it has been a while, so there. 

Are we all awake now? So consider ‘Facebook and Apple are in a fight. Your browsing history is in the middle’ (at https://www.nbcnews.com/tech/tech-news/facebook-apple-are-fight-your-browsing-history-middle-n1251612), apart from all the hackers getting access through Microsoft, we see another stage develop. The headline might not get you on board, so perhaps the by-line will “Facebook on Thursday ran its second full-page newspaper advertisement in as many days, attacking Apple’s plans to tell iPhone and iPad users when apps are tracking them online”, which implies that Facebook does NOT want you to know that apps are tracking your every move, and Apple does. It seems to me that Apple is in a stage to put awareness and security at the centre of your digital life, Facebook not so much. Now, I have no problems with Facebook keeping track of my actions ON FACEBOOK, but dos their ‘free’ service imply that they are allowed to do that anywhere I am? I believe that this is not the case and the money Facebook is getting is starting to feel tight around my digital profile, their actions had already made it important to delete Facebook software from my mobile phone (it was draining my battery), but the stage is larger and that is seen in the NBC News article (and a few others too).

So as the quote “Facebook on Thursday ran its second full-page newspaper advertisement in as many days, attacking Apple’s plans to tell iPhone and iPad users when apps are tracking them online” is given, how many of you are considering the following:

  1. A full page ad in the newspapers is pretty expensive.
  2. Facebook is seemingly untouched that multiple apps are following us.
  3. We are seemingly not allowed to know all the facts!

This is the big one “attacking Apple’s plans to tell iPhone and iPad users when apps are tracking them online”, so why are we not allowed to know what is being done to us, that we are being followed in a digital way and Facebook does not want us to be aware? This is where we see my (not so) subtle hint regarding your daughter and “fuck the bejesus out of her vagina”, how many fathers will be slightly less than enthusiastic? I get it, your little princess (your consenting and adult) little princess needs a knight on a white horse and always bring flowers and chocolates, have honourable intentions and to set your mind at ease keeps your daughter a virgin until the day she marries. It is not realistic, but parents are allowed to be overly protective of their princes and princesses. Yet Facebook seemingly does not want you to be in that park, they want you to be unaware of what is going on, and Apple drive it to the surface. So when we see “Apple is planning to roll out a new feature on its devices that will alert people when an app such as Facebook is trying to “track your activity across other companies’ apps and websites.” People will have options such as “Ask App not to Track” or “Allow.””, they did something really clever, if Microsoft (after they resolve all their hacks) does not follow suit, Microsoft stands to lose a massive slice of the consumer pie and that will not make them happy. I for the most am completely on the Apple side when we see “Users should know when their data is being collected and shared across other apps and websites — and they should have the choice to allow that or not”, I personally am realistic enough to see that Apple has an additional side to this, not sure what yet, but this is about a lot more than mere advertisements, I am however not too sure about what that is. When we see “Facebook uses data such as browsing history to show people ads they’re more likely to want to see, and to prove to marketers that its ads are working”, we need to realise that I would have no issues with any link opened within Facebook towards whatever we were going to in any advertisement. For example, if Facebook opens up a browser window, within Facebook and tracks the clicker, I would not completely be opposed to it, but Facebook realises that the data it I tracking is a much larger stage and I feel that this is not merely about “prove to marketers that its ads are working”, I believe that these trackers keep tabs on a lot more, keep tabs on what we do, where we do it and how we do it. I believe that it is a first step in the overly effective phishing attacks we face, Facebook might not be part to that, but I reckon the phishing industry got access to data that is not normally collected and I personally believe that Facebook is part of that problem, I also believe that this will turn from bad to worse with all the ‘via browser gaming apps’ we are currently being offered. I believe that these dedicated non console gaming ‘solutions’ will make things worse, it might be about money for players like Epic (Fortnite), but the data collected in this will cater to a much larger and optionally fairly darker player in this, I just haven’t found any direct evidence proving this, in my defence, I had no way of seeing the weakness that SolarWinds introduced. It does not surprise me, because there is always someone smarter and any firm that has a revenue and a cost issue will find a cheaper way, opening the door for all the nefarious characters surfing the life of IoT, there was never any doubt in this.

And in this, it was for them NEVER directly about the money, in this look at the ‘victims’:
The US Treasury Department, The US Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), The Department of Health’s National Institutes of Health (NIH), The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA), The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), The US Department of State, The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) (also disclosed today), The US Department of Energy (DOE) (also disclosed today), Three US states (also disclosed today), City of Austin (also disclosed today) (source: ZDNET). It was about the information, the stage of a more complete fingerprint of people and administrations. It gives the worry, but it also gives the stage where we can see that Apple has a point and we need to protect ourselves, because players like Microsoft will not (no matter what they claim). In this I name Microsoft, but they are not alone, anyone skating around margins of cost are potential data leaks and that list is a hell of a lot larger than any of us (including me) thinks it is.

So whilst we look and admire the models, actors and actresses and we imagine whatever we imagine, consider that they are not a realistic path, a desirable one, but not a realistic one and that is the opening that organised crime needs to claimingly give you ‘access’ to what you desire whilst taking your data. It is the oldest game in the book, all wars Arte based on deception and you need to wake up, the moment your data is captures and categorised you are no longer considered an interesting party, you are sold and they move onto the next target. So whilst you get trivialised, consider that Apple has a plan, but whatever they plan, it seems you are better off on that side, than the one Facebook is planning. When was the last time that you were better off staying in the dark on what happens to your data, on what happens when others keep tabs on you?

And in this consider “Facebook is making a last-ditch effort to persuade Apple to back off or compromise with industry standard-setters.With offline ads in newspapers such as The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal, the social networking company is trying to rally to its side the millions of small businesses who buy ads on Facebook and Instagram”, so in that quote where do we see any consideration on the people or us as the consumers? When we see “millions of small businesses who buy ads on Facebook and Instagram” where is the consideration that they should have for the customers who walk into their business? When you get in any shop what do you hear? How can I be of service? Or do you hear: What do you want? I let you consider that whilst you consider the position Facebook needs to have and consider that non digital advertisement never kept track of what other newspapers you were reading. 

We seemingly forgot that there is a price for the presence of IoT, Apple is making us aware of that. I am not silly enough that Apple is holier than though, but at least they created the awareness and the greed driven players are not looking too good today, are they?

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What ya gonna do?

It started two days ago, actually it started a lot earlier, but I basically had enough of the BS stage that we are given. Just to be sure, this is for the largest station not a media thing, so even as the BBC flamed my mood, the BBC is not responsible. As such before I go into ‘Google hit by landmark competition lawsuit in US over search’, I need to set the record straight according to the view I have and you might decide that I am wrong, which is perfectly fair. 

History gives us that Larry Page (aka Clever Smurf) and Sergey Brin (aka Papa Smurf) developed PageRank at Stanford University in 1996 as part of a research project about a new kind of search engine. It was not the first attempt, or perhaps ‘version’ is a better setting, there were earlier versions that go all the way back to the eigenvalue challenge by Gabriel Pinski and Francis Narin. So two bright surfs came up with the setting that big people players like Microsoft and IBM ignored for the longest time, and as such Google had the patents. The idea of link based popularity had not syphoned through because a lot of these wannabe bullet point managers basically did not understand the internet, they merely understood the options of selling concepts, yet in that age of selling concepts Google had the inside track to sell a setting that was ready and able as early as 1998. As such I have watched with my eyes desperately focussed on the heavens, asking our heavenly father to smite some of these stupid people, we now see “The charges, filed in federal court, were brought by the US Department of Justice and 11 other states. The lawsuit focuses on the billions of dollars Google pays each year to ensure its search engine is installed as the default option on browsers and devices such as mobile phones”, the same organisation that ignored Netscape and gave free reign to Microsoft is now seeing the government data lights? So when we see ‘the billions of dollars Google pays each year to ensure its search engine is installed as the default option on browsers and devices such as mobile phones’, all whilst it truthfully should say ‘Google installs its search engine on its mobile operating system Android, an alternative to the largely unaffordable iOS iPhones’, consider that the three generations of mobiles I have bought containing Android in times when the Apple alternative was close to 250% more expensive each and every time. The last time around the iPhone was $1999, whilst my Android phone (with almost the same storage) was $499, I will let you work out the setting. So when I see “Officials said those deals have helped secure Google’s place as the “gatekeeper” to the internet, allowing it to own or control the distribution channels for about 80% of search queries in the US”, I merely see (with my focal points partially towards the history of things) “Google was active and affordable in an age when Apple was not, Apple was unaffordable as they set themselves up as the larger elite provider, Android had affordable models by Motorola, Huawei, Google Nexus, Google Pixar, Oppo, HTC, Samsung, Oneplus. A setting that was open and affordable. And the officials that are raving on ‘allowing it to own or control the distribution channels for about 80% of search queries in the US’, these (as I personally see it) so called idiots, optionally way too deep in funky mushrooms are ignorant of the stage that Google catered to the user, Apple (the alternative) catered to its own bottom dollar way too often. In that same trend we need to see that “Apple’s iOS operating system has a share of 50 percent of the mobile operating system market in the United States”, so how come that Google has 80%? They thought things through, the BI management idiots with their bullet point presentations never thought things through. I have at least two examples that predate Facebook and well over half a dozen examples of 5G IP that is beyond the comprehension of mot of them (with the exception of Google and Huawei), these two UNDERSTAND systems, the others merely use and use to their nature towards limited comprehension, or at least that is how I see it. And in this ZDNet was a happy supplier in January of ‘Microsoft is about to force Bing onto Office 365 Plus users. But does even Bing think it’s better than Google?’, which is a nice setting, because I can ask bing on my Android, yet it seems that Microsoft forces Bing on its system, but it allegedly seems that they get way with that. The article has a few nice tidbits, but I particularly liked “Why Hasn’t Bing Improved To Become Better Than Google?”, an 2016 article by Forbes. With the article (at https://www.zdnet.com/article/is-google-better-than-bing-i-asked-google-and-bing-and-got-surprising-results/) giving us the added “and why Bing has a bit of a reputation as ‘the porn search engine’”, it seems that 18 years later bing is still sliding very much behind Google, Google had a few things better and better set. It is the final two parts that matter, the first one is “Both companies might try to offer something authoritative, but you should always use your own judgment and realise the vast limitations and algorithmic biases of all search engines. If Bing works for you, be happy. If Google does, be happy too. In both cases, though, be wary. Can you cope with the responsibility?” Yet in all this Bing never shows up in any official part does it? The second part gives the larger stage “in Bing searches, the entries under the News tab were far, far more dated than those in Google”, consider the need of us, the users, when do we accept dated information? It seems that any competitor of Google is vastly behind, even the rich bitch Microsoft. When we see that part of the equation, we need to wonder what is the play that these officials are making? What is it actually about? The BBC article also gives us “Google called the case “deeply flawed”” and that is the larger truth, the Bing setting proves that side of it, and more important, Microsoft who pushed Netscape out of the market is not being asked any questions in this regard, or is used to show the inferiority of what they have countering the vastly superior solutions by Google. As such, when we see “Politicians in Congress have also called for action against Google and fellow tech firms Amazon, Facebook and Apple in an effort that has united Democrats and Republicans”, no one seems to be wondering what Russia and China have on the market, because the advantage Google has now could become the stage of a fight against whatever Russia and China offer, in this data is the catalyst in these systems and before anyone starts trivialising that, consider that TikTok is Chinese, when we consider that over 2 billion people have downloaded it and it nw has a value between 110 and 180 billion, in a stage that only had Google before (YouTube), yet even in that setting the larger US tech giants set on their hands and they never came up with it, a Chinese entrepreneur did, so what else can they come up with? In a stage with non comprehending officials on just how cut throat this market is, they are weighting down on the tech giants all whilst Chinese innovators are going to town. And none of them have my IP yet. Another stage they ALL overlooked. What else do you think they will miss, because I do not think of everything (I just cannot be bothered thinking of everything), so what else is not seen? 

Consider that when you look at these so called ‘lets kick the tech-giants’ because at this speed the US will only have these four tech-giants left, the rest is most likely Indian or Chinese, the hungry tend to be innovative and in America these so called innovators haven’t been hungry for the longest time, so their track record wanes more and more. That is partially seen with ‘Quibli is the Anti-TikTok’ (at https://techcrunch.com/2020/04/09/quibi-vs-tiktok). Here we see the article from April where we are given “Rather than iterating toward product-market fit, it spent a fortune developing its slick app and buying fancy content in secret so it could launch with a bang.Yet Quibi’s bold business strategy is muted by a misguided allegiance to the golden age of television before the internet permeated every entertainment medium. It’s unsharable, prescriptive, sluggish, cumbersome and unfriendly. Quibi’s unwillingness to borrow anything from social networks makes the app feel cold and isolated, like watching reality shows in the vacuum of space”, with that consider that Quibli was founded 2 years AFTER TikTok, as such the stage for a better product was there to a much larger extent, and as Tech Crunch states “It takes either audacious self-confidence or reckless hubris to build a completely asocial video app in 2020”, and when we consider the fact that TikTok was created earlier by 2 years, the lack of innovation in Quibli is easily seen and as such after 6 months it shut down. These officials need to wake up and smell the coffee, the race is on and even as scare tactics towards anti-China might work to some degree in the US, the EU with 700 million consumers have little faith in US Hubris and that is where the stage changes, especially now with data laws in place. If Chinese and Indian innovators get the name and therefor the people and consumers, the marketshare of US companies will collapse more and more, as I see it 2022-2025 will not be a pretty picture for the US, the 5G backlog is starting to show and it will show more and more soon enough. 

As I see it, Google has two wars to fight, one with its own political administration, one with the true innovators out there. The second war they can win as they have true innovators themselves, but the one with the US political administration is a larger issue, because that war will also hinder the second war, which would be a bad situation for Google to be in.

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What are we fighting for?

It is a question we get to ask ourselves a lot, especially when we are serving. I served but was not confronted with that question, yet the line came to me in the Paul Newman movie ‘The Secret War of Harry Frigg’ which was a hilarious comedy and it introduced us to Sylva Koscina. The movie is not the issue here at present, but the line is. When the papers give us ‘US veterans and soldiers divided over Trump calling war dead ‘suckers’’, a setting that gives us “Donald Trump was struggling to retain support of active US service members, according to polls, even before last week’s bombshell report that the commander-in-chief referred to fallen and captured US service members as “losers” and “suckers””, I wonder how delusional he was when he gave us what he gave us. This is not some typo in the stream cast, it was a massive blunder, one that should never have happened. No matter how we see the wars that the US got themselves into, I a setting where almost 1.4 million people lost their lives going back to the Civil War, and in this, I estimate that roughly somewhere between 30-70 million people have a family member who lost their life in one of the wars that the US was a part of. So we have up to 70 million people that are in a rather large stage where the Commander in Chief of the US calls the people who died for their country ‘Losers’ and ‘Suckers’, so from my point of view that is a setting where the bulk of those people will not vote in whatever is in the White House at this time, and he only has himself to thank for that. Or as some will say, he got himself properly fired on that one.

And the news is not over, we see dozens of news media giving us denials, and fallout of the setting and there is more and more coming and all this 7 weeks before the election. As some see it, for Joe Biden Christmas came early, anyone who was on the fence on how to vote, with relatives who served in any US war, they are now going (more likely than not) Democrat, those who were deeply Republican are more likely than not on the fence, especially is they have relatives who served. If we go by the previous election with 128,000,000 voters, there is now a chance that from those, between 20%-40% is optionally not voting Republican, implying that the vote is more likely than not going to Joe Biden. 

It is not a given, I need to tell you that from the start, but his actions against the coloured (see any Black Lives Matter stage), the women (the ‘I grabbed her by the pussy’ statement), his attacks on Kamala Harris, now we get the Military statement, it adds up, it is slightly speculative, but except for the Klan and the ultra right, he basically upset every demographic possible. This relates to votes and all the votes voting ‘the other guy’ instead of him. I myself am for the most Republican in nature, but his setting is just too unacceptable to me and it has been so for well over 3 years. To be honest, I did not chose Hilary Clinton for the simple reason that she made a mess of Benghazi, it is the only reason why I did not select her (OK, she is not a republican, which was my my second reason). We have a setting that we have a liking for a side and I am not against Democrats, I am against the way they push certain matters. Let’s not forget that both sides did way too little in the tax laws setting, which is a first that needs fixing and after 4 terms, we need to fix it. I am not sure which sides picks it up, but big tech is much deeper in the Democratic pockets, as such less will be done in that setting. 

And this is not the end, this administration has made a massive mess of high tech and 5G, it gets to be a lot worse when we consider (2 weeks ago) ‘Europe’s 5G plans in limbo after latest salvo against Huawei’, and I believe that this is merely the start. We want to look at the headlines, but there is too much out there to support the stage that the media is being talked to by other parties. 

In all we speculate left, right and centre, yet the stage is not a given. Nokia is shouting on 5G New Radio, yet the stage that ZDNet gives us is “Standards for the first and second phases of 5G are moving towards completion, and early deployments can piggy-back on 4G LTE infrastructure. But there’s plenty of work to do before the technical advances in 5G’s radio spec can support new use cases”, as I personally see it, this is merely 4GLTE++, not 5G, and that is the larger stage, tomorrow Nokia is not even on par with today Huawei and the media is seemingly avoiding that issue. So as we get “If mobile technology were a long-running TV series, 5G is a mid-season reboot, with new characters introduced alongside the old, new plot arcs complementing existing storylines, and a publicity drive that rather overstates the case. However, the possibilities for future development are much enhanced”, I am remembering Adler (the typewriter) once decided to go into the PC world, it was early days and the 80286 became affordable, so Adler decided to enter the market with a 80186 processor, it was not a win. Having 4G LTE++ is a temporary solution, but in the end to get ahead the people will need true 5G, just like some telecom companies making a marketing claim of 4G, whilst in 2010 they could offer no more than 3.5G, and we are now seeing it again, but on a much larger stage. So when the people finally figure out that what is now Nokia, they will be on the slippery slope of what they cannot ski, but others can and that has been the issue from day one. I have nothing against Nokia, I have nothing against the others, yet the issue was that Huawei has a massive advantage and the stage is being set by a bankrupt America, an America who is afraid of what they are about to lose and they are using whatever they can to stem the tide and as the stages are washing away we will be given less and less facts.  So what are we fighting for? I honestly do not know what they are fighting for all whilst their IP is debatable. So as I am weighing the options available to me, I wonder where my IP will end, to be honest, if the money is there, I do not care (Deep Rising). In my case it is not greed driven, it is a drive towards those relying on bullet point presentations and making sure they miss out, even if I miss out on a million or two. If it allows me my house in a nice warm place, I am fine, it is optionally a stage where I say no to 5 billion when 500 million will ample suffice, the bullet point people will never get it, when is enough enough? 

It comes with the answer to ‘What are we fighting for?’, merely a corner of my choice in a place of my choice. It is a simple setting and one that those who embrace ‘Greed is good’ can never understand, because that is their weakness, just like loss is the achilles heel of the greed driven and the corrupt. Until they face the ultimate loss (the loss of what they truly love) they will remain delusional on what they can make happen. Only when they face it will they finally wake up, but if all goes to plan, I will be long gone by then. 

We all fight for something, and we are entering the stage where the truth is what the powerful say it is, it is no longer set to scientific measures, it is set to subjective terms, and that slippery slope is sliding, so answer yourself, what are you fighting for?

 

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The tech is out there

Even now, as the larger players (Microsoft and Wall-mart) are starting a bidding fight for TikTok, we see the flaw on several levels in the digital age. I illuminated it yesterday, in my previous article.  We are in a stage where everyone is shouting that they have Digital Media Managers , Digital Marketers, Account Managers, Social Media Managers and so on, and so on. Yet, where it counts, we see (at https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/WIGOV/bulletins/29bf2b8) the statement on Kenosha and the shooting, but when I looked at the site in ‘Self destruct initiated’ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2020/08/27/self-destruct-initiated/) there was no mention at all and that was at 02:57 on August 27th, whilst the shooting was on August 23, it took 4 days for the digital media manager to wake up. Yet the police section in the news of the City of Kenosha website is still empty, so why do they have a website and who manages it? It is nice to have politicians and captains of industry hide behind the Internet of Things, digital media and digital needs, but where it counts, are they even aware that they flunked the pooch? 

A second set is given by the BBC (at https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-53930775), here we see ‘Facebook says Apple ad-blocking settings could halve revenue’ where we get introduced to “Apple’s plan to require all users to actively opt in before they can be tracked “may render Audience Network so ineffective on iOS 14 that it may not make sense to offer it”, Facebook said”, whilst we also get “In the upcoming iOS 14, apps have to explicitly ask users’ permission to collect and share data, meaning ads will no longer be able to just “follow” users to apps outside of Facebook”, all whilst everyone is ignoring “way for advertisers to extend their campaigns beyond Facebook and into other mobile apps”, lets be clear, FaceBook has every right to advertise on its site, it is the price of getting a free service, yet where does it state that the people have to agree to be followed “into other mobile apps”? In that article, where does it state the need and rights of the consumer? (I am not attacking the BBC or the writer of the article), we overlook technology to the mere shallow assumption related to it. We see the attack on Apple from Epic games (Fortnite) and we see Microsoft supporting Epic games, yet thee fact that the rule that Apple relied on is pretty much the same rule Microsoft has in place, so how did that make sense? It only looks clear when we see the path Microsoft has in play and they mobile XCloud is relying on the millions of iPhone users. I mentioned that in ‘The stage pushed by Microsoft’ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2020/08/24/the-stage-pushed-by-microsoft/), so again we see a tech setting that is getting a shallow treatment and in this case I do not attack the media (even though I think they fell short), for the media it is all the emotion, as such we see the BBC giving us ‘Apple Fortnite players left behind in new update’, yet the stage where Epic games would be allowed back if they remove the external link in the game, which is against the developers agreement that Epic games agreed to when they got on the Apple store, a rule that Microsoft has in play as well and the media pretty much smoothed over with what I would personally see as ‘applied ignorance in action’.  

We see two versions of limited tech insight. This entire setting also applies to Huawei, the accusations and the lack of evidence is centre to all this. We get ‘Huawei’s networking equipment has not been detected spying’, in a Sky article last July, and it is the driving part in all this, we want evidence and we keep on getting bitching American politicians, one after another all emotions and no evidence. All whilst last week in the Australian Financial Review (at https://www.afr.com/technology/is-huawei-too-big-to-fail-20200824-p55ont) where we get the repeated “shot down by an announcement from the US government that it would use the global dominance of American technology to cut off all supplies of semiconductors to Huawei”, which is stupidity on a new level. It seems that it is not and that would be fair, the short term solution is met as semiconductors are not available. Yet in this for over a year Huawei was ready to that stage making (read: designing) their own semiconductors. When that happens, the US will have a Chinese competitor in another field and the US will lose even more ground. So whilst the US is in denial that Huawei grew because it had a good product, slightly cheaper but a lot better, in all this they rely on “Driven by the belief that Huawei could enable the ruling Chinese Communist party and its military to spy on other countries and their companies, undermine their national security and steal their commercial secrets, the US government used every option open to it”, where ‘could’ is the operative word and the additional ‘undermine their national security and steal their commercial secrets’, and guess what, there is no evidence on any level and the situation merely becomes worse when you consider ‘Critical flaw in IOS routers allows ‘complete system compromise’’, a part that ZDNet gave us in June (and before that, at https://www.zdnet.com/article/ciscos-warning-critical-flaw-in-ios-routers-allows-complete-system-compromise/), it is a simple situation, the Chinese government does not need to use Huawei to spy, they can use Cisco equipment (an American company based in San Jose) and download server by server on a global scale. When did the media give you that part? That weakness and a few more have been out in the open, and we hear nothing. This is not on Cisco, as it warned the users and is working on fixes, but the media is blind to the flaw, why is that?

Both the tech and the flawed tech is out there and there is a growing issue for a lot of people that we get limited and one sided revelations, who is served better to that? I am going with the personal view that the setting of the media catering to Shareholders, stakeholders and advertisers remains firmly in place.

The tech is out there, but who is taking a good look at it and who is using it to the maximum that would be required in the digital age? I’ll let you brew on that for a little while.

 

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Marketing Deceptive Concepts

We are all in the lane of what is coming; the problem is that what is coming is set on the E40, the longest European highway going from Calais all the way to Kazakhstan (Ridder). So as we depart from Ridder, trying to get to Calais on this AI highway, we need to consider that at present we only got past the first 100 kilometres of a trip that will be 8,000 kilometres long and we are not driving a Aston Martin, not even a Lada, we are traversing this in a 1908 Model T, giving a much clearer indication that this trip will take years (read: a decade at the very least) at best. To be quite honest, as technology goes, we are nowhere near AI, true AI. It will take the largest players (Google & IBM) decades to get to the real AI part, and only when computers become more technically savvy and a lot faster. As such I do not see the reason for people and companies like RACGP to give us: ‘AI is coming to healthcare – and it’s here to help‘, with the quote: “real promise – of artificial intelligence in healthcare“, yet we remain fair. Dr Martin Seneviratne stays faithful when he gives us: “we’re far away from that, to be honest” and he is correct. Yet the stage is there where we see: “In this article we are listing top 15 artificial intelligence apps for android and iOS users“, as well as “an Indian start-up claiming to have built an artificial intelligence-assisted app development platform, is not in fact using AI“. It is all BS (read: Hogwash), there is no such thing as AI, it is theoretical, conceptual at best, the real deal is at least a decade away. It reminds me of some Sales Dumbo I had to deal with on how cloud computing was it bees knees. When I mentioned that there is no thing like a cloud, it is merely someone else’s computer, I was the one who did not comprehend it (in the end I was right, and he (read: it) was not). Yes, I am aware of the ZDNet article (at https://www.zdnet.com/article/stop-saying-the-cloud-is-just-someone-elses-computer-because-its-not/). We get it, it is about scalability and the scale of the cloud is huge, but still, it is a server center that is owned by someone else, and the location of that server is equally important in the data laws we see today. Because the moment China launches its own commercial cloud system, the Americans will ‘suddenly’ come with issues like cloud locations and how the Chinese government can look into every cloud account. I was not belittling anything, merely making sure that we keep focus on terms used (and awareness is often larger than anyone considers). It is the monitoring, hacked data and more important lost data. The cloud comes with all kinds of marketing hypes, but informing on the scope and warning of the dangers that poor passwords bring is often not seen.

So when we get to the Verge where we see: “The company was sued earlier this year by its chief business officer, Robert Holdheim, who claims the company is exaggerating its AI abilities to get the funding it needed to actually work on the technology. According to Holdheim, Duggal “was telling investors that Engineer.ai was 80% done with developing a product that, in truth, he had barely even begun to develop“, we see the larger deception and we also see a lack of actions by governments to a much larger degree, apparently white collar deception is OK in their books.

So when we get back to the RACG (at https://www1.racgp.org.au/newsgp/professional/ai-is-coming-to-healthcare-and-it-s-here-to-help) where we see: “‘Documentation is a constant issue, and so is having a computer separating you and the patient,’ Dr Seneviratne said. ‘The dream of this AI revolution is that it helps with the parts of medicine doctors and patients don’t like, creates a safety net for ensuring quality across the board, and gives clinicians more time to be with their patients.’“, my mind goes back 47 months, 12 days and 14.1 hours (roughly) when I designed the concept of what could be the Google Tome (I concluded that the iTome could never become a reality in an technological iterative pushed corporation), a device that would take case of part of it and help the UK NHS to get a handle on their paper mess and red tape. The device would also be a great solution for places like Scandinavia where the rural population is all over the place. There was one tiny setback, it required 5G, it was the only way to get it to work to the degree it did and 5G was nowhere near ready to the stage that places like the NHS, GP’s and clinics could be upgraded. We are still 1-2 years away, but the Google Tome would be a game changer as it worked on a very different IP. Apple would take a decently large hit as I remembered some original parts from before the PowerMac and Apple actually had the inside track, with today’s iPad they could have ruled, but in the last two years they became a mere iterative needy toddler, taking them out of the game. both IBM and Huawei are not ready for this leap giving Google an actual first position with no chance of any number two catching up for close to half a decade. My solution was not AI based, it was based on the realistic foundation of NHS administrations and to see where the obstructions were. Instead of making some political never working one system (UK Parliament spend £11.2 billion learning that it did not work), my path was to upgrade all the elements and give a new definition to speed, not the one that is founded, for downloading, but a new on access protocol that emphasises on security and data safety. In fact, the results would in theory get to the right physician 30%-60% faster. Anyone who waited for results in an NHS location can tell you what a game changer that is.

And none of this touches the 5G IP I created three years later.

But that is not what it is about, it is about the marketing ploys we are confronted with and for the most, the media greedily uses that hyped term to get traction with people, clicks and awareness, the information is less and less a concern to the larger group of media (or so it seems). The one that I got confronted with yesterday is the one that set it off. A friend (Tom Breur) wrote an excellent piece regarding Data Democracy (at https://tombreur.wordpress.com/2019/08/13/what-does-data-democracy-stand-for/). Yet in data, as I personally see it, there is no real democracy, it can be dictatorial, it can be feudal, it can even be tyrannical, but it is never democratic, you do not get a vote in that hierarchy, that is the way with data and it is the researcher who can redefine you through giving you a weight of 1 (or lower) or disregard you as inconsequential as grouping you with other user missing points of non interest. The respondent never had a voice in the matter negating the entire democracy part.

This setting was most likely started by media with their claims of “Big data’s threat to democracy becoming global problem“, and there the delusion started. Big data is never about democracy and democracy is not about data, it is about applied wisdom, they do not correlate and are even less likely one and the same. It becomes even more entertaining when we (at https://morningstaronline.co.uk/article/labour-will-ban-big-money-buying-democracy) see: “Labour will ban big money from ‘buying up democracy’“, it is entertaining and hilarious as this has been happening well over a century, long before there was a silicon based economy (not talking about boobies here). When we get: “Last November Mr Johnson was flown to New York and was paid £94,507.85 for a two-hour speech at the multibillion-dollar hedge fund company Golden Tree Asset Management“, we can argue that he was merely doing a job he was allowed to do, and that is not impeding democracy, is it? And when we see: “We are funded by workers through their trade unions and small donations, averaging just £22 in the last general election“, how much support did you give the people who voted for UK Labour without a donation? And when we see the Washington Post give us: “Data shows that an overwhelming majority of Africans believe that democracy remains the best form of government“, I might not disagree with that, yet the issue is not agreeing and disagreeing, it is the deceptive model of awareness creation that big business allows for when they buy the identities on Facebook by millions and target them with political advertisement. Even as Senators like Ron Wyden are calling to ban that, he knows he is fighting a lost war. Also, as a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, he is watching proven CIA tactics being deployed via Facebook and he knows how efficient those can be, it is a game only the rich can play. He even hides behind “I’d rather have them do it voluntarily than requiring a law“, because there is no way that they can pass that law in time and even then there will be a dozen loopholes to circumvent the law passed via the first amendment.

It is all due to the marketing we allowed from the very beginning. there was no stop to the media, the hold on awareness versus deceptive is sketchy at best and now that there is a whole slew of iterations coming forward we see more and more deceptive conduct, yet nothing is done, there are attempts, but they are feeble at best. That evidence is seen when we consider Engineer.ai and its founder & CEO, Sachin Dev Duggal. We see the news in the Wall Street Journal as well as the Verge, yet less than 3 days ago that person won the Serial Entrepreneur award, so it seems that the players are all OK with deceptive conduct. Yet I remain optimistic, I merely have to wait to see this blow up in the faces of those sales driven CEO’s and VP’s to see that their failure gave them months of reprieve and every documented event merely sets the stage for my IP in a much more powerful way.

We need to consider that when it comes to creating awareness, the media is still accountable to shareholders, stake holders and advertisers, as such there are a lot of issues in the IT field, personally in light of recent events the do’s and don’ts of Sachin Dev Duggal take the cake. Don’t take my word for it, merely look at the Wall Street Journal (at https://www.wsj.com/articles/ai-startup-boom-raises-questions-of-exaggerated-tech-savvy-11565775004) and consider how the award two days later was still handed to Sachin Dev Duggal. Even as the man ‘hides’ behind ‘human-assisted AI‘, and when we look at the quote: “it uses artificial-intelligence technology to largely automate the development of mobile apps, but several current and former employees say the company exaggerates its AI capabilities to attract customers and investors“, we need to ask a whole range of questions, none of those are found anywhere. I am not raining on the man’s parade, but clearly no one else is either. I wonder how many righteous participators at that entrepreneurial award feel left out in the cold, a fair question if I say so.

I merely look at the marketing part of it all, when I look into the direct impact, that some marketing hypes are giving us, I tend to wonder if the need was really awareness, or confusion that was behind the creation of the hype. It is sad but that is more and more often the need to wonder when any form of media gets involved.

It is a sad evolution in the age of information as it has been for some time now.

 

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A little pain to Huawei

Yes, there is finally a moment where we need to ask Huawei questions. Bloomberg reported (at https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-04-30/vodafone-found-hidden-backdoors-in-huawei-equipment) that backdoors have been found. More accurately: “Vodafone asked Huawei to remove backdoors in home internet routers in 2011 and received assurances from the supplier that the issues were fixed, but further testing revealed that the security vulnerabilities remained, the documents show“, yet knowing the track record of Vodafone, that is not the whole story. Is there an issue? Seemingly not, as the headline gives us: ‘While the carrier says the issues found in 2011 and 2012 were resolved at the time‘, so an issue found 7 years ago was resolved at the time. Is that issue there now? Bloomberg does not really give us that do they? It gets to be a larger issue of what is seemingly called reporting when we see the ZDNet report from 2017 (5 years after the Bloomberg reported issue: “Thousands of routers, many of which belong to AT&T U-verse customers, can be easily and remotely hacked through several critical security vulnerabilities“. that as well as: “Among the vulnerabilities are hardcoded credentials, which can allow “root” remote access to an affected device, giving an attacker full control over the router. An attacker can connect to an affected router and log-in with a publicly-disclosed username and password, granting access to the modem’s menu-driven shell. An attacker can view and change the Wi-Fi router name and password, and alter the network’s setup, such as rerouting internet traffic to a malicious server“, these are much larger issues and were they resolved? We would think yes, but the article did not give us that. They did give us: “The report said Arris NVG589 and NVG599 modems with the latest 9.2.2 firmware are affected, but it’s not clear who’s responsible for the bugs“. The small fact that this constituted 5 flaws as well as a reported statement of: ‘the vulnerabilities are not limited to the hard-coded credentials flaw‘ give rise to a whole range of issues. So even as we might think that this one flaw is a stitch in the high regard for Huawei, the fact that an American solution has well over 500% the amount of vulnerabilities and as stated on several levels give rise to the reliability of Huawei. Moreover, the length of the issue is also a given at times as well as the need for better 5G equipment. Yet in all this, how much actual damage has either caused, Bloomberg was willing not to disclose that either. Yet Huawei is not out of the woods yet. The article gives us ‘further testing revealed that the security vulnerabilities remained, the documents show‘ and that is indeed a larger problem, yet these documents were from 2012, when was it actually resolved? The fact that we do not see that it was never ‘not resolved’ implies that it was, in addition, the 2012 issues in Italy were resolved that year. Then there is the quote ‘it couldn’t find evidence of historical vulnerabilities in routers or broadband network gateways beyond Italy‘ making it a localised temporary issue.

In all this Huawei has an issue to deal with and even as we see the lack of comparison flaws (I added the AT&T issue so you can be aware), the unbalanced reporting, as well as the clarity that there is to some extent an issue remains. The fact that the huge AT&T disaster was never called to answer questions might be equally a consideration to make. All computers and most software have bugs and security flaws. When I looked this morning, I found a list of 845 vulnerabilities in Windows 10, some of them critical. So when we compare these issues, we should consider that your Huawei router is not the largest problem and that is merely the beginning of the issue. Historically speaking, from 1999 we see that Windows have had 113,811 vulnerabilities; 4911 vulnerabilities regarding the ability to gain privileges, 10377 on getting information and 6001 on bypassing options. So in all we need to consider that your choice of Windows is a much bigger concern than your Router is, if the Chinese government wants to get access to your data they merely need to wait for you to switch on your windows machine, there are plenty of options to get to the stuff no matter which router you buy and if you got the Arris NVG589 or NVG599 modem it would have seemingly been easy as pie to just copy whatever you had, so in the end can you see that the entire Huawei mess is merely an American mess to project the notion that you should not buy Chinese, but consider the optionally more flawed American solutions?

And whilst I got to AT&T, the news (three days ago) was ‘AT&T claims title as first U.S. carrier to hit 2Gbps on 5G network‘, yet when we consider the quote by VentureBeat: “It’s great in the abstract that some businesses in Atlanta may be able to get 2Gbps speeds on a 5G device regular consumers can’t buy. But what really matters is the actual speed normal 5G users across multiple cities will see on actual consumer devices. Verizon has provided a sub-1Gbps sense of what to expect, but AT&T hasn’t.

We see that what is regarded as reliable in America is a bit of a stretch at some point, for the most I was most disappointed with is the fact that the Bloomberg article should be regarded as an attack on Huawei whilst there is no comparison given as to how that flaw related to the flaws others had, more important the fact that there were larger flaws from others much more recent is a missed part. Still Bloomberg did raise a really valid point on a flaw that Huawei seemingly has, with the perception that the news could have been given in 450 words, the rest was a lot of smoke around an issue that dwarves against some of the other issues, issues where there is actual fire, not merely smoke.

But that is merely my $0.02 on the situation.

 

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