MacObserver

Sinji Flexible Borescope Camera for iPhone and Android: $29.95

18 hours 57 minutes ago

We have a deal on the Sinji Borescope, a flexible inspection camera designed to provide a quick and easy overview of hard to reach areas. It comes with a 2-meter cable and 6 adjustable LEDs for lighting your view. It also comes with a hook and magnet for retrieving objects. It’s $29.95 through our deal.


Bryan Chaffin

HBO Max Won’t Count Against AT&T Data Caps

20 hours 43 minutes ago

Streaming on HBO Max will not count against your AT&T data cap, The Verge reported. Not surprisingly, the same does not apply to rival streaming services like Netflix, Disney+, or Apple TV+.

According to an AT&T executive familiar with the matter, HBO Max is using AT&T’s “sponsored data” system, which technically allows any company to pay to excuse its services from data caps. But since AT&T owns HBO Max, it’s just paying itself: the data fee shows up on the HBO Max books as an expense and on the AT&T Mobility books as revenue. For AT&T as a whole, it zeroes out. Compare that to a competitor like Netflix, which could theoretically pay AT&T for sponsored data, but it would be a pure cost. That’s why the last time we looked at AT&T’s sponsored data system, the only three streaming services we could find using it… were owned by AT&T. It’s also why sponsored data systems fly in the face of net neutrality principles.


Charlotte Henry

Apple Pencil in Black Could be on the Way

20 hours 52 minutes ago

The Apple Pencil has, thus far, only been available in white. However, AppleInsider picked up on rumors that it may become available in black in the not too distant future.

There haven’t been any rumors about a potential Apple Pencil refresh, though the stylus was last updated in 2018 alongside an iPad Pro overhaul, three years after it first debuted in 2015. Currently, the Apple Pencil is only available in white. On Tuesday, Twitter user Mr. white (@laobaiTD) posted a vague statement that the “New Apple Pencil is Black.” Because of the lack of information, it isn’t clear when a third-generation Apple Pencil could launch, or what the speculation is based on.


Charlotte Henry

That Time Steve Jobs Taught Bill Atkinson About Rounded Rectangles

21 hours 12 minutes ago

Here’s a humorous little story from Andy Hertzfeld, a member of Apple’s original Macintosh team. Bill Atkinson did some clever programming to draw circles and ovals quickly on a Mac. But Steve Jobs had something else in mind.

Bill fired up his demo and it quickly filled the Lisa screen with randomly-sized ovals, faster than you thought was possible. But something was bothering Steve Jobs. “Well, circles and ovals are good, but how about drawing rectangles with rounded corners? Can we do that now, too?”


Andrew Orr

How the ‘Untappd’ Beer App Was Used to Track Military, CIA Movements

22 hours 30 minutes ago

Researchers were able to use beer rating app Untappd to track the location history of military and CIA personnel.

Examples of users that can be tracked this way include a U.S. drone pilot, along with a list of both domestic and overseas military bases he has visited, a naval officer, who checked in at the beach next to Guantanamo’s bay detention center as well as several times at the Pentagon, and a senior intelligence officer with over seven thousand check-ins, domestic and abroad. Senior officials at the U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. Air Force are included as well.

Not even the CIA is safe against the data industrial complex.


Andrew Orr

Security Researcher Believes Mac Backdoor ‘Tiny Shell” Still Being Used

1 day 1 hour ago

Mac security researcher Jaron Bradley says he believes hackers are still using an open source macOS backdoor called “Tiny SHell.”

Tinyshell is an open source tool that operates like a shady version of SSH. It’s been a while since I’ve encountered a new sample, but I fully believe attackers are still out there using it. If you watched the Macdoored talk then you’ve seen what attackers are doing “post mortem” with this tool. However, no technical details have been discussed about the malware itself.


Andrew Orr

Amazon No Longer Including Item Details in Order and Shipment Emails

1 day 3 hours ago

Users have started to notice that Amazon does not include the items you’ve ordered in its confirmation and shipment emails. One Daring Fireball, John Gruber owners whether it is a bid to stop others scraping the data.

Amazon no longer puts a list of items in order confirmation and shipment notice emails. Almost certainly they’re doing this to thwart email-scraping data harvesters from obtaining information about Amazon sales. All sorts of companies harvest this info, and people volunteer to let them do it (including Edison Mail, the iOS mail client whose recent egregious bug granted full access to email accounts to random other users — at least they’re up front about it in their “how we use data” statement). Edison is far from alone in this — there’s an entire cottage industry of email clients and “tools” whose entire business model is based on scraping their users’ email for e-commerce trends. So, from the Department of This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things, Amazon has responded by removing product information from its emails.


Charlotte Henry

Amtrak Data Breach Affects Guest Rewards Accounts

1 day 4 hours ago

Discovered on April 16, 2020, Amtrak suffered a data breach that affects its Amtrak Guest Rewards accounts.

The attack vector involved was compromised usernames and passwords, which may suggest the use of credentials previously leaked or stolen, or the use of brute-force methods.

Amtrak says that some personal information was viewable, although the company has not specifically said what data may have been compromised. However, Amtrak was keen to emphasize that Social Security numbers, credit card information, and other financial data was not involved in the data leak.


Andrew Orr

Writer and Podcaster Antony Johnston – TMO BGM Interview

1 day 17 hours ago

Antony Johnston is a New York Times bestselling writer and podcaster. The Charlize Theron movie Atomic Blonde is based on his graphic novel; his Brigitte Sharp thrillers are critically acclaimed; and Dead Space, his first videogame, redefined its genre. He also hosts a writer’s podcast.

Antony told me about how he transformed his career as graphics artist into successful graphic novels and video game scripting. Later, on his Mac, he delved into novel writing (with Scrivener), most notably the Brigitte Sharp thrillers. Antony recounted how his graphic novel The Coldest City came to be made into a theatrical movie, Atomic Blonde. And to top it all off, Antony told me about his podcast “Writing and Breathing,” a show about “why, how, and what we write,” in which he chats with fellow authors of all kinds.


John Martellaro
Checked
2 hours 54 minutes ago
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