NSA records 'radicalizers' porn habits -- U.S. 31st in Internet speed -- BITCOIN Nears $1,000 -- MICROSOFT mocks Chromebooks

 

November 27, 2013 06:00 PST | 09:00 EST | 14:00 UTC

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>> HONEY POT: Top-secret document reveals NSA spied on porn habits as part of plan to discredit 'radicalizers,' by Glenn Greenwald, Ryan Gallagher, Ryan Grim: "The National Security Agency has been gathering records of online sexual activity and evidence of visits to pornographic websites as part of a proposed plan to harm the reputations of those whom the agency believes are radicalizing others through incendiary speeches, according to a top-secret NSA document. The document, provided by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, identifies six targets, all Muslims, as 'exemplars' of how 'personal vulnerabilities' can be learned through electronic surveillance, and then exploited to undermine a target's credibility, reputation and authority. The NSA document, dated Oct. 3, 2012, repeatedly refers to the power of charges of hypocrisy to undermine such a messenger." Huffington Post

>>>> Glenn Greenwald: Dirt-digger of the year 2013 GQ

>>>> Microsoft, suspecting NSA spying, to ramp up efforts to encrypt its Internet traffic WaPo

>>>> Senators Wyden, Udall, Heinrich: End the NSA dragnet, now NYT Opinion

>> CARRY ON: Link between 'Satoshi' bitcoin account and the Silk Road dissolves, by Jeremy Kirk: "A research paper speculating Bitcoin's creator may have transferred $60,000 to the Silk Road marketplace has been dispelled, as the account holder in question came forward on Tuesday, denying he is the mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto. Dustin Trammell, a security researcher who is CEO of the vulnerability marketplace ExploitHub, wrote in a blog post that the Israeli researchers failed in their analysis, which was subject to blistering criticism from the bitcoin community." PCWorld

>>>> Quid pro quo: Bitcoin approaching US $1,000 [See latest at the end of TechBrief.]

>>>> I Am Not Satoshi Hacker News

>>>> Witch Hunts and Public Data AVC

>>>> Much Ado About Bitcoin NYT

>> CORPORATE CLOUD CONTROL: Box acquires dLoop to enhance security with fine-grained data analytics technology, by Alex Williams: "Box has acquired dLoop, a startup that provides ways for IT administrators to control access to content with finer granularity. The acquisition will give Box a level of data analytics that is often a required feature for enterprise customers... will make it easier to discover content on a network that might be ordinarily difficult to find. It's in some respects comparable to Autonomy, which discovers relevant content that traditional search would not find." TechCrunch

>> TREASURE MAP: With PrimeSense, Apple got key mapping technology, by Jessica Lessin: "There's a lot of speculation about why Apple bought motion-sensor company PrimeSense. But I think the real reason has been overlooked. PrimeSense's chips were in early versions of Microsoft's Kinect sensor, the gaming console that lets you wave your hands around to control it. So, many have jumped to the conclusion that Apple purchased the company for a component for its long-awaited, long-rumored TV. I don't think that's it. Industry sources tell me PrimeSense's motion-sensing technology for gestural controls is a little bit behind and that Microsoft doesn't use it in the Kinect. But PrimeSense's technology is much more strategic for mapping, according to one person familiar with the company. In fact, companies like Matterport, which makes a camera for mapping three-dimensional spaces, use its chips." Jessica Lessin blog

>>>> For Apple, 3-D sensors have potential beyond TV NYT Bits

>>>> Beyond television: How Apple could incorporate PrimeSense technology into its products MacRumors

>> LAND OF THE SLOW: America falls to a dismal 31st on ranking of consumer download speeds, by Rebecca Grant: "30 countries have faster Internet than America, at least according to the most recent update from Speedtest.net... Hong Kong topped the list, followed by Singapore, Romania, South Korea, and Sweden... the U.S. falls far short of countries that are hardly known for being technological powerhouses, including Moldova and Uruguay." VentureBeat

>> PRINT ME A BATTERY, SCOTTY: New inks and tools allow 3-D printing of lithium-ion technology, by Mike Orcutt: "By making the basic building blocks of batteries out of ink, Harvard materials scientist Jennifer Lewis is laying the groundwork for lithium-ion batteries and other high-performing electronics that can be produced with 3-D printers. Although the technology is still at an early stage, the ability to print batteries and other electronics could make it possible to manufacture new kinds of devices...For example, the plastic shell of a hearing aid is already 3-D printed for a custom fit inside a wearer's ear. But the electronics are manufactured separately, and the batteries are often the type that must be replaced frequently. If the electronics and a rechargeable battery were printed together, the final product could be made more rapidly and seamlessly." MIT Technology Review

>> OUT OF THE LAB: Google brings automatic voice search to computers running Chrome, by Zach Miners: "Laptop and desktop users can now do a Google search without typing just by speaking aloud, with a Chrome extension... Google Voice Search Hotword [which] can be downloaded from the Chrome Web Store... The tool lets users perform a voice search by going to Google.com and saying, 'OK Google,' then speaking the search term." TechHive

>> REQUIEM FOR A WINDOW: Microsoft must kill Windows RT to survive in mobile, says analyst, by Preston Gralla: "If Microsoft is going to ride the boom in tablets it needs to reduce the number of its Windows-related operating systems,says the analyst firm Canalys. If you read between the lines, though, that's just a polite way of saying Windows RT must die... Clearly, Microsoft can't kill Windows Phone and it can't kill full-blown Windows. That leaves Windows RT as the odd man out... once it's gone, Microsoft will have a better chance of succeeding in the booming tablet market." Computerworld

>>>> Canalys: Half of all PCs shipped in 2014 will be tablets; Android 65%, Apple 30% ... and Windows? You do the math. TechCrunch

>> BUBBLE WATCH: In Silicon Valley, partying like it's 1999 once more, by David Streitfeld: "That is generating a huge amount of attention and an undercurrent of concern. In Silicon Valley, it may not be 1999 yet, but that fateful year -- a moment when no one thought there was any risk to the wildest idea -- can be seen on the horizon, drifting closer.... Opinions differ here about exactly what stage of exuberance the valley is in. "Everyone feels like the valley has been in a boom cycle for quite some time," said Jeremy Stoppelman, the chief executive of Yelp. "That makes people nervous." John Backus, a founding partner with New Atlantic Ventures, says he believes it is more like 1996: Things are just ramping up." NYT (paywalled)

>> VOX POPULI: Moto G review: Motorola bridges the gap between cheap and good in smartphones, by Darrell Etherington: "Moto G is a phone that mostly delivers on its marketing premise, offering an experience that'll have many doing a double take at that price tag... You cannot buy a better phone at this price." TechCrunch

>>>> Moto G now available unlocked in the US: 8GB for $179 and 16GB for $199, starts shipping on December 2 TNW

>>>> Nokia announces the Lumia 525, an upgraded successor to the top-selling Lumia 520 TNW >> XBOX SPIN-BAIT: Despite hot sales, Xbox One may be a $1 billion loser, by Chris Smith: "Despite selling more than a million Xbox Ones in less than 24 hours after launch, Microsoft is not going to make money off its latest gaming console anytime soon, prompting some analysts to advise a spin-off for the Xbox division. Barron's points us to note sent on Friday by Nomura Equity Research analyst Rick Sherlund to investors claiming that Microsoft stands to lose more than $1 billion this year from its Xbox venture, a number that looks slightly better than the initial $2 billion Xbox One loss forecast from the same research firm." BGR

>>>> Microsoft's Xbox One costs $90 more to build than Sony's PS4, teardown shows AllThingsD

>>>> Microsoft offers free game for Xbox One owners burned by bad hardware BGR

>> Microsoft enlists Pawn Stars to mock Google's Chromebooks TechCrunch

>> If Microsoft says Chromebooks are a con, it's a compliment to Chromebooks Time

>> Extreme starts anew after Enterasys buy Network World

>> Google shows how to scale apps from zero to a million requests per second, for $10 Forbes

>> Take that, pricy Pixel: Acer's new touchscreen Chromebook is only $300 VentureBeat

>> HP ends tough year on a high note InfoWorld

>> IT buyers starting to look a lot like consumer shoppers CIO

>> Symantec to shut down Backup Exec.cloud PCWorld

>> PayPal adds support for prepaid gift cards, thanks to patent-pending 'pay anytime anywhere with any card' system TNW

>> Apple patents Lytro-like refocusable camera suitable for iPhone Apple Insider

>> Wearable tech: Apple working with Denmark earpiece maker on 'Made For iPhone' Bluetooth hearing aids Macworld

>> An anti-fraud service for fraudsters Krebs on Security

>> Was it smart to ditch unlimited data? Revisiting my decision, one year later GeekWire

>> BITCOIN AT THIS HOUR: $956. 30-day range: $200 to $984. Mt Gox

>> TWEET O' THE DAY: "The most difficult part of visiting relatives over the holidays is finding where the channels are on their weirdo cable systems." @dashbot

FEED ME, SEYMOUR: Comments? Questions? Tips? Shoot mail to Trent or Woody. Follow @gegax or @woodyleonhard.

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