Around the IT Industry 6/10-6/14

by Modis on June 14, 2013

Google Acquiring Waze for 1.1 Million?

Tech giant Google has another big project in its sights. Acquiring map provider Waze, which is in talks to proceed for 1.1M USD. Consumers are migrating to smartphones to serve their navigational needs and away from printing directions from a personal computer. Waze currently has roughly 40 million users constantly updating maps with detours, traffic updates, and road hazard detailing. Google is attempting to oust rival Apple in terms of mobile navigation, giving Google a clear edge against other social media companies which may attempt to court Waze in the future.

Your Printer is the Next Wiretap

New technology has arrived to invade your personal privacy. Every time you print a document, a barcode is encoded which holds a code which could be used to identify the person printing. Sound far-fetched? Unfortunately this is based in fact, in a proposed effort to help identify counterfeiters in the United States the government has succeeded in being able to print documents with this encoding on the pages. Some laser printer manufacturers have already been using this technology, and it is unknown how widespread it may be. There are currently no laws prohibiting this technology from collecting the data of its users.

New Android Trojan Nearly Impossible to Eradicate

Kaspersky claims that it has discovered the most advanced Android trojan thus far. Identified as “Backdoor.AndroidOS.Obad.a” this malicious virus will send SMS messages to premium rate numbers, download other malware to run on the device, and infect other Androids via the use of Bluetooth. Obad is very well hidden, and relies on several security holes in Android OS to make it very hard to track down and remove. Once the virus is run on a device, it attempts to gain admin privileges, turning into a disaster. Despite its well-hidden nature, the virus accounts for less than .015% of all mobile virus infections. Google has been informed of the security holes that the virus uses to call home.

University of Washington Develops Gesture Recognition WiFi Technology

WiSee is a new technology pioneered by the University of Washington. The research has shown that it is possible to use WiFi signals to interact with the world around us without the use of sensors on the body or cameras. Augmenting WiFi signals to detect gesture recognition is a pivotal step forward in living in an augmented and highly digital reality. This technology aims to be cheaper and more immerse than cameras or other means of gesture recognition, with a wide variety of uses both personal and professional. WiFi signals are in many areas, and this technology aims to push the technology to new heights.

Opportunity Mars Rover Rolls On

It has been 10 years since the launch of the Mars rover dubbed “Opportunity,” but perhaps the moniker “Tenacious” may have been more appropriate. The rover has collected countless soil samples, proven that there once was water on Mars, and gathered countless data providing us information on the mysterious red planet. The Opportunity runs on only one processor, and has a single power supply to its name. Once anything breaks, the Opportunity will most likely no longer function. Despite the fact that Opportunity is by no means the mobile laboratory that the Discovery rover is–it still provides much needed data for NASA about Mars and the universe we inhabit.

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