Anorak

Technology | Anorak - Part 6

Technology Category

Independent news, views, opinions and reviews on the latest gadgets, games, science, technology and research from Apple and more. It’s about the technologies that change the way we live, work, love and behave.

Nottingham Man Buys Photo Of XBox One For £450

BavJBC0IEAA IiK Nottingham Man Buys Photo Of XBox One For £450

 

WHEN Peter Clatworthy saw a photo of anXBox One console on eBay, he wanted it. He handed over £450 plug £8 packaging.  The 19-year-old student, of Bilborough, Nottingham, wanted the device for his four-year-old son, McKenzie. But he got exactly what he clicked on: a picture of an XBox One.

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Posted: 6th, December 2013 | In: Strange But True, Technology, The Consumer | Comments (4) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


A Penguin Ate My Camera

Posted: 5th, December 2013 | In: Strange But True, Technology | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Sam Wollaston Is The Witless Antidote To Clive James’ TVGuardian

PA 15367715 Sam Wollaston Is The Witless Antidote To Clive James TVGuardian

 

Mic Right’s Remotely Furious: Sam Wollaston and Charlie Brooker

SAM Wollaston is my favourite TV critic of the modern age. While Clive James continued in his dotage to be pure genius, Wollaston is a performance artist, the Andy Kaufmann of sitting around gawping at other people’s work then witlessly hammering out some half-thought out bibble for The Guardian. Nice work if you can get it.

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Posted: 5th, December 2013 | In: Technology, TV & Radio | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


The Global iPhone 5 Price Index

PA 12990396 The Global iPhone 5 Price Index

THIS is a nice little piece of research showing the variation in price of the iPhone all over the world. You can set it to tell you the absolute price in any country and see the impact of taxes etc on an iPhone 5s. Or you can mix and match it with how rich the country is and so see what percentage of the average salary it is.

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Posted: 5th, December 2013 | In: Money, Technology, The Consumer | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


So How Do You Train To Stick Your Finger Up A Man’s Bum?

cancer balls So How Do You Train To Stick Your Finger Up A Mans Bum?

THIS isn’t something I’ve ever really thought about: how do you go about training yourself to stick your finger up a man’s bum? No, no, not as part of the festivities on Hampstead Heath but rather, how does a doctor get trained to do prostate exams?

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Posted: 4th, December 2013 | In: Money, Technology | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


The FriXion Revolution: Virtual Sex Just Got Intimate

THE FriXion Revolution is here! Never again will BBC DJs and rock stars need to actually touch their fans and run the risk of an underage furore. With FriXion, you can rub and grope through your computer.

On the next generation haptic social network innovative and affordable haptic peripherals empower FriXion users to come together and touch each other in tangible, stimulating ways; from holding hands and kissing up to and including full penetrative sex whether your partner is across the room or across an ocean.

 

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Posted: 3rd, December 2013 | In: Technology, The Consumer | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Living Radiation-Sponge Grows In Chernobyl

PA 2357753 Living Radiation Sponge Grows In Chernobyl

THERE is life inside the old Chernobyl nuclear reactor. Growing life. A robot sent within the radioactive energy tomb discovered  a smear of goo on one of the walls. 

A samples was taken. Further probes. Further investigations. The thing was feasting off the gamma radiation. Gamma radiation 500 times the normal background radiation levels. It sounds terrifying. But, then, what if nature is eating the radiation? Could this fungus clean up radioactive sites?

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Posted: 29th, November 2013 | In: Technology | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


How A Standard Lock And Key Work (video and Gif)

EVER wonder how a lock works?

animated How A Standard Lock And Key Work (video and Gif)

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Posted: 28th, November 2013 | In: Technology | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


What Happens When Your Crash A Car Carrying A Christmas Tree (Video)

christmas tree car What Happens When Your Crash A Car Carrying A Christmas Tree (Video)

 

THINKING of transporting a Christmas Tree on your car roof?

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Posted: 28th, November 2013 | In: Cars | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Woman Hid In Car Boot To Escape Drink Driving Charge

PA 6961293 Woman Hid In Car Boot To Escape Drink Driving Charge

THE car crashed into a wall in Bad Kreuznach, Rhineland Palatinate, Germany, attracted police attention. What they failed to noticed that the car’s owner was in the boot – the 30-year-old had curled up to sleep off the demon drink and drugs.

She had placed within reach water and food.

Posted: 28th, November 2013 | In: Cars, Strange But True | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


iPhone Thief Sends Victim Huge Handwritten List Of Contacts

contacts phone iPhone Thief Sends Victim Huge Handwritten List Of Contacts
WHEN Zou Bin’s phone was stolen by a man with whom he’d shared a taxi ride in China’s Hunan province, he sent a text to the  ”I can assure you that I will find you. Send me back the phone to the address below if you are sensible.”

Mr Bin wanted his phone and, more importantly, the contacts on it. He sent another message: ”Look through the contact numbers in my mobile and you will know what trade I am in.”

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Posted: 27th, November 2013 | In: Strange But True, Technology | Comments (2) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Man Swaps His Testicle For A Nissan 370

 Man Swaps His Testicle For A Nissan 370HOW much do your balls mean to you? Or indeed, do you sleep with a ball-having partner and have grown rather fond of them? Well, thank the stars you’re not seeing the car lover who is selling one of his testicles for £22,000 so he can buy a Nissan 370.

That’s right. A Nissan.

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Posted: 26th, November 2013 | In: Cars, News, Strange But True | Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


John Reed’s Automated Cat Petting Machine

THE Automated Cat Petting Machine is a real thing. No. It’s not RoboSpinster. It’s John Reed’s work for his senior thesis film at Tyler in 1987. As he says, “The Cat Petter turned out to be far more interesting than the film”. Our tip would be to rename it the BBC DJ Recruiter and call the cops on the old stroker:

Posted: 26th, November 2013 | In: Film, Technology | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


KSI V Microsoft: Sexism And Jokes About Violently Attacking Women Are Off-Brand

KSI is a big hit on YouTube. But Eurogamer has severed links with the blogger also known as JJ or Olajide. He appeared in this horrible video, doing a passable impression of a 1970s BBC DJ as he used the microphone to belittle women. The language is NSFW.

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Posted: 24th, November 2013 | In: Celebrities, News, Technology | Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Woof To Wash: The Wonderful Dog-Operated Washing Machine

Woof to wash Woof To Wash: The Wonderful Dog Operated Washing Machine

 

REASONS to love dogs: No. 342c – they can wash your clothes.

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Posted: 24th, November 2013 | In: Technology, The Consumer | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Your LG Smart TV Is Spying On You And Your Midget Fetish

lg smart Your LG Smart TV Is Spying On You And Your Midget Fetish
IS you new LG Smart TV spying on you?  Dr Beet, aka Hull-based Jason Huntley, found that his telly was displaying ads on the Smart landing screen. He investigated and found a corporate video advertising their data collection practices to potential advertisers. LG boasts:

LG Smart Ad analyses users favourite programs, online behaviour, search keywords and other information to offer relevant ads to target audiences. For example, LG Smart Ad can feature sharp suits to men, or alluring cosmetics and fragrances to women.
Furthermore, LG Smart Ad offers useful and various advertising performance reports. That live broadcasting ads cannot. To accurately identify actual advertising effectiveness.
The telly features a “Collection of watching info”. Unless you disable it this is active.
He went further, looking at what was being harvested:

GB.smartshare.lgtvsdp.com POST /ibs/v2.2/service/watchInformation.xml HTTP/1.1
Host: GB.ibis.lgappstv.com
Accept: */*
X-Device-Product:NETCAST 4.0
X-Device-Platform:NC4M
X-Device-Model:HE_DTV_NC4M_AFAAABAA
X-Device-Netcast-Platform-Version:0004.0002.0000
X-Device-Country:GB
X-Device-Country-Group:EU
X-Device-ID:2yxQ5kEhf45fjUD35G+E/xdq7xxWE2ghu0j4an9kbGoNcyWaSsoLgyk8JJoMtjRrYRsVS6mHKy/Zdd6nZp+Y+gK6DVqnbQeDqr16YgacdzKU80sCKwOAi1TwIQov/SlB
X-Authentication:YMu3V1dv8m8JD0ghrsmEToxONDI= cookie:JSESSIONID=3BB87277C55EED9489B6E6B2DEA7C9FD.node_sdpibis10; Path=/
Content-Length: 460
Content-Type: application/x-www-form-urlencoded
&chan_name=BBC TWO&device_src_idx=1&dtv_standard_type=2
&broadcast_type=2&device_platform_name=NETCAST 4.0_mtk5398&chan_code=251533454-72E0D0FB0A8A4C70E4E2D829523CA235&external_input_name=Antenna&chan_phy_no=&atsc_chan_maj_no=&atsc_chan_min_no=&chan_src_idx=1&chan_phy_no=&atsc_chan_maj_no=&atsc_chan_min_no=&chan_phy_no=47&atsc_chan_maj_no=2&atsc_chan_min_no=2&chan_src_idx=1&dvb_chan_nw_id=9018&dvb_chan_transf_id=4170&dvb_chan_svc_id=4287&watch_dvc_logging=0

He notes:
This information appears to be sent back unencrypted and in the clear to LG every time you change channel, even if you have gone to the trouble of changing the setting above to switch collection of viewing information off.

It was at this point, I made an even more disturbing find within the packet data dumps.  I noticed filenames were being posted to LG’s servers and that these filenames were ones stored on my external USB hard drive.  To demonstrate this, I created a mock avi file and copied it to a USB stick.

This file didn’t really contain “midget porn” at all, I renamed it to make sure it had a unique filename that I could spot easily in the data and one that was unlikely to come from a broadcast source.

And sure enough, there is was…

I think it’s important to point out that the URL that the data is being POSTed to doesn’t in fact exist, you can see this from the HTTP 404 response in the next response from LG’s server after the ACK.

However, despite being missing at the moment, this collection URL could be implemented by LG on their server tomorrow, enabling them to start transparently collecting detailed information on what media files you have stored.

It would easily be possible to infer the presence of adult content or files that had been downloaded from file sharing sites. My wife was shocked to see our children’s names being transmitted in the name of a Christmas video file that we had watched from USB.

So what does LG have to say about this?  I approached them and asked them to comment on data collection, profiling of their customers, collection of usage information and mandatory embedded advertising on products that their customers had paid for.  Their response to this was as follows:

Good Morning
Thank you for your e-mail.
Further to our previous email to yourself, we have escalated the issues you reported to LG’s UK Head Office.
The advice we have been given is that unfortunately as you accepted the Terms and Conditions on your TV, your concerns would be best directed to the retailer.  We understand you feel you should have been made aware of these T’s and C’s at the point of sale, and for obvious reasons LG are unable to pass comment on their actions.
We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause you. If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us again.
Kind Regards
Tom
LG Electronics UK Helpdesk

Mr Huntley tells the BBC:

“That’s a terrible implementation of the idea. It still sends the traffic but labels it saying I didn’t want it to be sent. It’s actually worse, I think, than if they’d not offered the optout in the first place since it allows the user to believe nothing is being sent.”

That TV isn’t smart. It’s a smart arse…

Posted: 21st, November 2013 | In: Technology, The Consumer | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


George Osborne’s £50m grant for better condoms

The team behind the wonder material graphene – developed at the University of Manchester in 2004 – has just got a big new commission: making condoms.

Graphene is strong, light, nearly transparent, and an excellent conductor of heat and electricity, qualities that have got it dubbed a supermaterial and tipped for use in airplane wings, internet cables and foldable computers. Chancellor George Osborne is a vocal fan, putting £50m into the department making it in 2011 and trumpeting the superthin layers of carbon as a bright new hope for British industry.

But that’s not all graphene is good for … some of the team working on it at Manchester have just landed a deal to make condoms out of it. 

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Posted: 20th, November 2013 | In: Technology | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

THE new Mini has been launched. The latest BMW version of  Sir Alec Issigonis’ classic is bigger than ever before. The original car built by the British Motor Corporation (BMC) and its successors from 1959 until 2000 were  manufactured at the Longbridge and Cowley plants in England.

Let’s compare then and now:

 

NOW:

The car is built at the BMW factory in Oxford.

 

 

 

The production line at the BMW Mini plant in Oxford. 

PA 18241059 1 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

PA 18240588 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

PA 18241053 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

 

PA 18240915 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

PA 18240914 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

PA 18240989 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

PA 18241002 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

PA 18240997 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

 

 

THEN:

 

 

 

A view of the mini assembly lines in the new factory of Austin works in Longbridge, Birmingham. Date: 25/08/1959

PA 6725131 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

 

 

Sir Leonard Lord, Chairman of the British Motor Corporation, at the Longbridge works in Birmingham as he gets into the driving seat of the BMC’s revolutionary new small car, announced today, as the Austin Seven and Morris Mini-Minor. Date: 25/08/1959

PA 12583542 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

 

 

Sir Leonard Lord, chairman of the British Motor Corporation, inspects an exhibition of the Austin Seven and Morris Mini-Minor at Longbridge in Birmingham. Date: 25/08/1959

PA 15082903 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

 

At its height the Longbridge plant closed in 1985.

 

 

Workers spray the body of a car on the assembly line at the British Motor Corporation’s Longbridge site in Birmingham, where the Austin Seven and Morris Mini-Minors are being produced. Date: 25/08/1959

PA 6395005 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

 

 

The Austin Seven and Morris Mini-Minors are driven off the production line at the British Motor Corporation’s Longbridge site in Birmingham. Date: 25/08/1959

PA 15084058 1 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

 

PA 15084097 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

 

PA 15084136 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

 

 

A promotional event for the Austin Seven and Morris Mini Minor. Five adults, one baby, two dogs and luggage were loaded into the small car at the British Motor Corporation’s Longbridge site in Birmingham. Date: 25/08/1959

PA 15084151 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

 

PA 6395016 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

 

 

PA 6395012 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013 PA 6395011 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013 PA 6395010 The Making Of The Mini: Factory Tour Film And Photos 1959 To 2013

 

 

Posted: 20th, November 2013 | In: Cars, Flashback | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Twitter Is Not A Good Pace For David Cameron – 10 Great First Responses To Dave’s Tweets

HOW’S David Cameron getting along on Twitter. Well, you dip your toe in the effluent and it comes up yellow…

 

17058711 Twitter Is Not A Good Pace For David Cameron   10 Great First Responses To Daves Tweets

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Posted: 20th, November 2013 | In: David Cameron, Politicians, Technology | Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Jack Vale’s Social Media Experiment

JACK Vale has a Social Media Experiment. You might have seen it on the end of pier with the fortune teller or at the psychic’s show:

Posted: 19th, November 2013 | In: Anorak TV, Technology | Comments (2) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


The Twitter Interview For Your Next Job

HMM, given the way that I eff and blind on Twitter this isn’t going to be good news for me next time I go out to look for a job:

Employers could use new personality profiling software on jobseekers’ tweets to see if they are right for a role.

IBM developers believe they can successfully assess a person’s psychological traits by analysing the 140 characters they use on Twitter.

The software scans the most recent tweets, be it hundreds or thousands, to develop a personality profile.

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Posted: 19th, November 2013 | In: Money, Technology | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Flashback: Dr Harb Hayre’s Tattletale Machine

FLASHBACK to March 18, 1975:

PA 8636183 2 Flashback: Dr Harb Hayres Tattletale Machine

 

Dr. Harb Hayre, a professor of electric engineering at the University of Houston on March 18, 1975, checks the write out of his tattletale machine. The device can analyze the voice and tell more about a person than words alone. Properly applied, says the professor, the machine could: detect a drunk driver; tell who is lying and who is telling the truth; determine if a pilot is to tired to fly; tell the precise condition of a mental patient; or, determine if a person is under the influence of drugs. (AP Photo/EFK)

Posted: 19th, November 2013 | In: Flashback, Technology | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Locate The Best Qulity Marijuana With Denver’s Nasal Ranger

nasal marijuana Locate The Best Qulity Marijuana With Denvers Nasal Ranger

 

TO Denver, Colorado, where the city’s police Nasal Ranger is investigating the smell of marijuana. The Denver Post reports:

“Ben Siller looked ridiculous on a recent afternoon, standing on a downtown Denver street corner with a giant device clamped to his face sniffing the air for odorous evidence of marijuana.”

Yep. He does. But one day, when marijuana is legal everywhere, Mr Siller could be a ‘nose’, just like those wine buffs who can identify a blend of grapes with a sniff, a swirl, a gurgle and a spit. One sniff, and Mr Siller will be able to tell consumers just what’s in the blend. WAft a sample under Nasal Ranger et voila!, you need never buy oregano and henna again.

Amber Frost has facts about Colorado smells:

In a city of around 634,000 people, there were 98 smell complaints in 2010, seven involved weed. In 2012, there were 288 complaints, with sixteen having to do with marihuana. While that’s an increase overall, complaints about pot actually decreasedby about 1.5%, and this was all prior to the legalization of pot for recreational use. In 2013 (up until September 20th), they recorded 85 complaints, eleven of which were attributed to marijuana, a slight increase since 2010, but the city isn’t exactly being hot-boxed.

 

How does Nasal Ranger work? Because any weed hounds needs one to find the good stuff:

 

Posted: 18th, November 2013 | In: News, Technology | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Johny Ive: The World’s Most Famous Designer And Reluctant Knight

PA 11466465 Johny Ive: The Worlds Most Famous Designer And Reluctant Knight

LEANDER Kahney is talking about the world’s most famous designer, Essex-boy and graduate of Newcastle Polytechnic done very good,  Johny Ive. British writer Kahney has profiled the Apple legend in Jony Ive: The Genius Behind Apple’s Greatest Products. Here are a few extracts:

Phil Gray, who was his first boss after he graduated from design school, met him at the Olympics in London. “When I asked Sir Jony what was it like being a knight of the realm, he replied, ‘You know what? Out in San Francisco it means absolutely nothing. But back in Britain it is a burden.’”

At 25, he was headhunted by Apple.

“I remember very clearly Steve announcing that our goal is not just to make money but to make great products,” Ive later recalled. “The decisions you make based on that philosophy are fundamentally different from the ones we had been making at Apple… We were on the same wavelength. I suddenly understood why I loved the company.”

In the design studio:

Ive has the only private office. The front wall and door are made of glass, with stainless steel fittings, just like the ones in Apple’s shops. Except for a small shelf system, the office is bare with plain white walls, featuring no pictures of his family or design awards; just a desk, chair and lamp.

jonny ive 99 Johny Ive: The Worlds Most Famous Designer And Reluctant Knight

Ive is Apple’s soul:

Just before he died on October 5, 2011, Jobs revealed the degree to which he had empowered Ive inside the company. “He has more operational power than anyone else at Apple except me,” Jobs said. “There’s no one who can tell him what to do, or to butt out. That’s the way I set it up.”

Said Ive:

“Our goal isn’t to make money. Our goal absolutely at Apple is not to make money. This may sound a little flippant, but it’s the truth. Our goal and what gets us excited is to try to make great products. We trust that if we are successful, people will like them, and if we are operationally competent, we will make revenue, but we are very clear about our goal.”

Well, I bought an Ive original. Then I bought another. And another…

 

Do Ive’s products match /reflect his changing of style? For hat Apple do next, wonder about Johny’s state of mind? He’s middle-aged; he’ll be thinking slim and knowing.
jony ive Johny Ive: The Worlds Most Famous Designer And Reluctant Knight

 

 

Lead Photo: In this file photo taken March 19, 1999, Jonathan Ive, left, Apple’s vice president of design, and Jon Rubinstein, Apple’s senior vice president of engineering, pose behind five iMac personal computers, at Apple headquarters in Cupertino, Calif. Apple CEO Steve Jobs may be the company’s most recognizable personality, but much of its cachet comes from its clean, friendly-looking designs, the product of its head designer, Jonathan Ive.

Posted: 17th, November 2013 | In: Money, Technology, The Consumer | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0