Monthly Archives: May 2013

Avoid the Xbox One at All Costs

One central feature of Orwell’s “1984” was the Telescreen. A sort of two way television set, citizens had neither the option to turn off the Telescreen’s continuous propagana nor disable its always-watching and always-listening microphone and camera. One central feature of Microsoft’s “Xbox One” is the Kinect 2. Turning your TV into a sort of […]

(Offtopic) Physics: A Rant About Shit That Spins (including quantum entanglement)

So, I was reading about the Iron Man space-skydiving suit, and I noticed it incorporates gyroscopes to stop the whole thing spinning out of control. Because when you’re falling through PURE SPACE, waving your hands about or other skydiver tricks isn’t going to do jack. Yet here we have a humble gyroscope and it does […]

Browser Privacy: RequestPolicy and Panopticlick

The experienced paranoids amongst you may find this old hat. For everyone else, there’s Panopticlick. You’ve swallowed your cookies with a glass of milk, disposed of Flash in a pan, and filed a lawsuit over scalding hot Java on your laptop. But you’re still fucked. How? It’s called browser fingerprinting. Without knowing your IP address […]

Crowdfunding a Bank Heist (and quantum entanglement)

You gotta admire the cojones of this guy. Not only does he get funding from an art residency program to spend a year interviewing and persuading a number of police departments and security experts to help him plan a theoretically perfect bank robbery, he proceeds to announce that he’s going to publish the grand master […]

3D Printing House Keys, Revisited (and bitcoin, scientific papers)

3D printing keys to pin tumbler locks is getting more popular. With no knowledge of locks, a reasonably sharp guy managed to print a key for his house lock. This is not new at all — the author just replicated work that had been previously done. (And in the process found the original published code […]

Buying Into the Surveillance State: the Internet of Things (and Italian cold fusion)

On one hand I like Bruce Schneier’s essays because he points out the really horrifying potentials in a lot of things. (Here, the point is simple: don’t buy smart-everything) On the other hand, he speaks as if these things are inevitable. As if it’s guaranteed that the world will transition from the Huxley-Lite “incomplete totalitarianism” […]

Storing Randomness in Glass: Better One-Time Pads

One time pads are neat, but they turn a crypto problem into a key exchange problem. Encrypting 1GB of data requires 1GB of key material. They’re therefore only for situations where you can securely exchange a large volume of data every once in a while, but have to communicate over an insecure line on a […]