4G TV interference: Up to a million homes ‘need filters’
Read report at BBC here.
4G TV interference: Up to a million homes ‘need filters’
Read report at BBC here.
How to catch an IMSI catcher. Catchercatcher. Don’t get tracked by your GSM phone.
Using a £10 Motorola C115, a USB cable and a laptop running Linux.
For IMSI catchers to achieve their goals they will need to show behavior different from normal base stations. We distinguish between yellow, red, and black flags. Yellow flag are an indication that you might have been caught; red flags are a very strong indication; and black flags tell you: “You are being tracked down; throw away your phone and run.”
Want to know how World War III really starts?
The control centre for the remote UAV drones (that’s unmanned American surveillance planes that fly by remote control) has been hit by a virus!
Although not connected to the internet, someone has stuck a USB pen drive infected with a virus into one of the PCs that run the remote control system for the Predator planes. Seemingly they run Windows XP – see photo. (this really happened in the last month).
Hypothetically speaking of course, if these PCs were connected to the internet, they might now be under the control of a bot-master, for sale to the highest bidder on the internet crime forums. Got a dispute with a business associate? Don’t send round a bruiser with a baseball bat, instead bomb the f**k out of them!
Okay, it didn’t happen yet, but it might quite soon. Imagine, in the very near future, when China own all the infrastructure and buildings within the EU (because of our own financial stupidity) – World War III could be easily sparked by UAV drones under the control (seemingly) of some 3rd party hacker bombing Beijing. What a great get-out clause for the real culprits… and a release from all our financial obligations. (great James Bond movie plot, if nothing else)
These drones are obviously able to act autonomously when not in radio communication with HQ (think about your own smartphone that already has GPS, a gyroscope & inertia sensor), but they still depend on radio signals to operate remotely. Imagine someone in a cheap plane with an array of radio jammers… What is the UAV to do next?
These UAV’s are just turning war into a video game for the remote operators – would you want one of your children running this remote control killing room? If you’re brought up killing people successfully on-screen in video games, then it’s a very small leap to doing it for pay from the US military in some remote server room (Remember, champions of justice, your opponents have families & children, who also dream of a better world).
Follow the Drunken UAV on Twitter.
Yes, that headline is correct. One of the original authors of Elite for the BBC Micro, has started a non-profit company with the stated aim of bringing a $20 PC to every kid in the country.
David Braben believes that teaching of ICT is diverting focus away from learning all those real computer skills. Like hacking together your first script or Python program, or making an Arduino open your garage door from a smartphone. He’s right too.
The USB stick Raspberry Pi computer has a HDMI port on one end, so will connect to any recent HD ready TV. The other end attaches to a USB hub, which can have a keyboard, mouse, or USB ethernet port attached. The stick runs an ultra-cheap ARM processor & Ubuntu Linux. When you consider it will drive a 1080P TV at full HD resolution & surf the internet, that’s a pretty exciting proposition. I’d buy one just to play with – I’d donate one too, come to that, if they decide to mirror early attempts at spreading the cheap PCs to less well off countries.
This all makes running Ubuntu from a USB memory stick look pretty lame! Now the whole computer is on the stick.
David Braben thinks we’re about a year away from being able to own one. In the next 12 months prices of Android & Chrome tablets PCs are going to fall significantly, but I still love the idea of the £15 USB stick PC. If it could let you watch BBC iPlayer in HD on your TV, how great would that be!
If you want to read about how David Braben got his start with computers – aged 18 he received a £120 Acorn Atom kit for Christmas, which he soldered together himself (yes, these are the skills that helped him design a £15 USB PC, today) – then read the book ‘Backroom Boys’ by Francis Spufford, ISBN 0-571-21497-5. It’s also full of other great electronic engineering feats. You might have to settle for a used copy. Also contains the stories of the rise of Concorde, Vodafone/Cellnet & Mapping the human genome. Brilliant read.
Vodafone Suresignal 3G hotspot is hacked.
The £50 Vodafone 3G Suresignal hotspot allows cell phone users with poor mast coverage to set up a mini mast in their own home, that routes 3G traffic through their home WiFi router.
The hardware runs on a standard Arm processor box running Linux. Some researchers have rooted the box and are able to bend it to their will. Allowing it to act like a 3G IMSI Catcher.
You can read all about it here : http://wiki.thc.org/vodafone
Update 15/07/2011 – According to The Register, Vodafone claim this security loophole was fixed a year ago, through an online update to all Suresignal boxes. Now that a mechanism exists for breaking into, and understanding the Suresignal, we think more exploits may yet be uncovered. Possibly.
Has your iPhone started displaying the message “This Accessory Is Not Optimised / Optimized For This iPhone”?
My wife’s iPhone 4 just started doing this over the weekend. Sound would come and go, and the error message would pop up frequently.
I looked around the forums and saw plenty of other people experiencing the same problem. Suggested remedies included removing your screen protector, plugging in and unplugging headphones ten times, etc, etc. Likely causes ranged from pairing up the iPhone with the car’s Bluetooth to buying a new speaker dock. Lots of people were blaming Apple & the latest software update…
In my wife’s case it was none of the above. If you think about this error message logically, then it’s telling you it thinks you have an accessory attached… Where do the accessories plug in? To the charging/USB adapter on the base of the iPhone, of course.
I inspected the connector on the base of the wife’s iPhone 4 with a magnifying glass, in good light, and could clearly see some green grunge across the contacts (likely caused by water contact – I see this all the time inside iPods I refurbish).
The solution is to get a can of ‘IPA Solvent’ (specially for cleaning electronic circuit boards) & a cotton bud. TURN OFF YOUR IPHONE. Pull & flatten both ends of the cotton bud, so they’re ‘Spatula shaped’, and then spray a little IPA solvent on one end. Clean the copper contacts carefully. Then use the dry end of the cotton bud to soak up any excess solvent. Inspect you handwork under a magnifying glass and they should be nice and clean. If the water damage was minimal your iPhone will be fine. (if you dropped it in the bath or toilet it probably won’t fix it).
Seem to be lots of news reports today saying that Pirate Bay (and sites like it) will soon be banned at the ISP level in the UK.
I hope the music & movie industries aren’t expecting a sudden windfall of new customers when this takes place. I can’t see that happening at all.
Here’s what I see happening: Children exchanging USB memory sticks full of copyrighted material outside the school gates. Spivs going around industrial estates selling DVDs full of pirated movies & music. Invitation-only private networks for sharing files. People using secure web-proxies (VPN) to tunnel legitimately to servers in countries not affected by the ban – like Chinese Facebook users do now. All that will happen is that the means of doing all these things will just become common knowledge. Right now, with Pirate Bay, the music/movie cartel can monitor who’s downloading what, they’ll soon lose that ability completely.
If I was running a music company and wanted to reconnect with my customers I’d be focused on giving the customer something they can’t get with a pirate copy – so with every CD sold I’d include a ticket that might win you something really cool, something money alone can’t buy: backstage passes for gigs, chance to watch album recordings, meet the band, etc. Maybe a special access code for an invite-only Facebook friend hookup with the band – something you could brag about to friends. And also a load of little prizes, like the next album for free.
I read a short while ago that album sales are doing well in Japan because they make such a big deal about the artwork & packaging (like we did in the 70/80s with albums in the UK). After all, no one appreciates being given a CD-R with an inky scribble on it for Christmas or their birthday. They can borrow that idea for a TV ad campaign if they like – much better than ‘Copying stuff funds organised crime’, who gives a shit what funds organised crime – because nobody wants to be thought of as a cheapskate bastard.
When I was in my teens the ZX Spectrum home PC was the must have gadget. Kids in my class would use the newly released Amstrad tape-to-tape deck to copy the latest games releases from one tape to another. Because those tapes were analogue, the copy would degrade a little bit each time. You don’t have that problem with digital media, you get a perfect clone every time. Even with that piracy going on, the games companies still made packets of money by innovating constantly. Music tapes were copied in the same way. Many kids would record the Top 40 off the radio on a Sunday evening onto a tape. If I want to listen to ANY of those songs right now I need only go to Youtube.com (some of them even have the original video too). Sure, the quality is better from a CD, but haven’t we all got used to inferior MP3 anyway?
My final point would be that a lot of what the music industry now releases is complete crap. Go find a lot more people like Adele, Rumer, Paolo Nutini and you’ll sell loads of CDs to people like me in their 40s. Finding stuff like this on Youtube actually made me go and buy the CD from Amazon – so please don’t make Youtube your next target!