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Desktops (Apple)

Submission + - Apple lulls Mac owners into false sense of security (pcpro.co.uk) 1

Barence writes: "Apple has recklessly convinced Mac owners that they don't need to worry about security, according to PC Pro's Davey Winder. Encouraged by Apple's advertising, only a fifth of Mac owners believe their computers are vulnerable to attack, even though security experts believe OS X is less secure than Windows 7, and that modern malware targets the user rather than the OS. As Trend Micro's director of security research, Rik Ferguson, points out "the fact that that user base is largely unprepared and the computers themselves largely unprotected only increases the attractiveness"."
Communications

Why Text Messages Are Limited To 160 Characters 504

The LA Times has a story about Friedhelm Hillebrand, one of the communications researchers behind efforts to standardize various cell phone technologies. In particular, he worked out the 160 character limit for text messages. "Hillebrand sat at his typewriter, tapping out random sentences and questions on a sheet of paper. As he went along, Hillebrand counted the number of letters, numbers, punctuation marks and spaces on the page. Each blurb ran on for a line or two and nearly always clocked in under 160 characters. That became Hillebrand's magic number ... Looking for a data pipeline that would fit these micro messages, Hillebrand came up with the idea to harness a secondary radio channel that already existed on mobile networks. This smaller data lane had been used only to alert a cellphone about reception strength and to supply it with bits of information regarding incoming calls. ... Initially, Hillebrand's team could fit only 128 characters into that space, but that didn't seem like nearly enough. With a little tweaking and a decision to cut down the set of possible letters, numbers and symbols that the system could represent, they squeezed out room for another 32 characters.
Microsoft

Office 2007SP2 ODF Interoperability Very Bad 627

David Gerard writes "Microsoft Office 2007 SP2 claims support for ODF 1.1. With hard work and careful thinking, they have successfully achieved technical compliance but zero interoperability! MSO 2007sp2 won't read ODF 1.1 from any other existing application, and its ODF is only readable by the CleverAge plugin. The post goes into detail as to how it manages this so thoroughly."
The Almighty Buck

GoDaddy VP Caught Bidding Against Customers 222

An anonymous reader writes "A GoDaddy Vice President has been caught bidding against customers in their own domain name auctions. The employee Adam Dicker isn't just any GoDaddy employee; he's head of the GoDaddy subsidiary that controls the auctions. Dicker won some of the domains he bid for, and pushed up the bid price on auctions he didn't win. The conflict of interest is unethical, but could this practice also be illegal? Said a representative for a competitor, 'Even if controlled, that practice has bad news written all over it.' This comes hot on the heels of news that despite earlier promises to ICANN to end their 60-Day ban on transfers, GoDaddy quietly circumvented it by forcing customers to agree to the ban anyway. ICANN doesn't appear to be investigating or asking follow-up questions about this. What can be done to force ICANN to police the registrars for which it is responsible?"
The Internet

Scientology's Credibility Questioned Over Video Channel 450

stonyandcher writes to share that the Church of Scientology has come under fire for some items on their recently launched video channel. Most notably, claims have been leveled that dignitaries in one of their videos were faked and at least one of the people featured in the video is claiming their statements were taken out of context.
Portables

MacBook Air First To Be Compromised In Hacking Contest 493

Multiple readers have written to let us know that the MacBook Air was the first laptop to fall in the CanSecWest hacking contest. The successful hijacking took place only two minutes into the second day of the competition, after the rules had been relaxed to allow the visiting of websites and opening of emails. The TippingPoint blog reveals that the vulnerability was located within Safari, but they won't release specific details until Apple has had a chance to correct the problem. The winner, Charlie Miller, gets to keep the laptop and $10,000. We covered the contest last year, and the results were similar.

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