Unwanted BLACKBERRY taken off block -- COOK lobbies to protect gays in workplace -- MAVERICKS eats external drive data -- HealthCare.gov #FAIL deconstructed

 

November 4, 2013 06:00 PDT | 09:00 EDT | 13:00 UTC

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>> BREAKING: BlackBerry scraps bid to find buyer, replaces CEO Thorsten Heins, gets $1 billion investment, by Ina Fried: "BlackBerry is giving up its effort to sell itself to a large investor and will replace CEO Thorsten Heins, the company said on Monday. The company said that rather than bid for the company, Fairfax Financial will lead a group of investors pouring $1 billion into the troubled handset maker with its CEO Prem Watsa, becoming lead director. Former Sybase CEO John Chen will serve as interim CEO and executive chairman once the investment is completed, which BlackBerry said should be within the next two weeks. The investment will come in the form of a debt sale, BlackBerry said, with Fairfax itself putting $250 million into the company." AllThingsD

>> MAC MISFIRE: Western Digital reports destroyed data when upgrading to OS X Mavericks, by Woody Leonhard: "The exact cause of the problem hasn't been pinned down, but if you own any external hard drive, or you use eSATA peripherals, it would be wise to avoid Mavericks for now... Knowledgeable speculation at this point focuses on the possibility that the SATA bridge firmware card inside the WD MyBook isn't cooperating with Mavericks... It isn't known if (as the WD email asserts) other external hard drives, from whatever manufacturer, are having the same problem." InfoWorld

>>>> Apple's Mavericks off to strongest-ever OS X start Computerworld

>> LIBERTY AND JUSTICE: Apple's Tim Cook urges Senate vote on workplace equality, by Jonathan Skillings: "Apple CEO Tim cook is calling on Congress to pass a bill that seeks to offer protection against workplace policies and practices that create disadvantages based on sexual orientation and gender identity.... 'So long as the law remains silent on the workplace rights of gay and lesbian Americans,' Cook wrote, 'we as a nation are effectively consenting to discrimination against them.'" CNet 

>>>> Workplace equality is good for business, by Tim Cook Wall Street Journal (pay-walled)

>> THOSE WILEY WABBITS: Google's Eric Schmidt lambasts NSA over spying, by Deborah Kan: "'It's really outrageous that the National Security Agency was looking between the Google data centers, if that's true. The steps that the organization was willing to do without good judgment to pursue its mission and potentially violate people's privacy, it's not OK,' Mr. Schmidt told The Wall Street Journal in an interview. 'The Snowden revelations have assisted us in understanding that it's perfectly possible that there are more revelations to come.'" Wall Street Journal (pay-walled)

>> SILICON VALLEY MINDMELD: Welcome to the Unicorn Club: Learning from billion-dollar startups, by Aileen Lee: "It surprised us how much the unicorn club has in common. In some cases, 90 percent in common, such as enterprise founder/CEOs with technical degrees; companies with 2+ co-founders who worked or went to school together; companies whose founders had prior tech startup experience; and whose founders were in their 30s or older... most successful startups take a lot of time and commitment to break out. While vesting periods are usually four years, the most valuable startups will take at least eight years before a 'liquidity event,' and most founders and CEOs will stay in their companies beyond such an event." TechCrunch
>>>> Hackpad: Billion dollar startups for vintage years 2003-2013 A VC

>> ANATOMY OF A CLUSTER: HealthCare.gov: How political fear was pitted against technical needs, by Amy Goldstein and Juliet Eilperin: "'They were running the biggest start-up in the world, and they didn't have anyone who had run a start-up, or even run a business,' said David Cutler, a Harvard professor and health adviser to Obama's 2008 campaign.... 'It's very hard to think of a situation where the people best at getting legislation passed are best at implementing it. They are a different set of skills.'" WaPo

>> DEPARTURE LOUNGE: Henri Lamiraux, Apple's top iOS Engineering VP, leaves company after 23 years, by Mark Gurman: "He retired from Apple a 'couple of weeks' ago, following the release of iOS 7.0.3. Lamiraux decided a 'little while ago' that iOS 7 would be his last release… At a time where Apple's software engineering division is moving out of almost-decade-long influence from the leadership of Scott Forstall, Lamiraux's departure as being one of the top leaders of Apple's arguably single-most-important product, is a significant loss for Apple." 9to5Mac

>> WILLIE SUTTON RULE: Hackers take limo service firm for a ride, by Brian Krebs: "A hacker break in at a U.S. company that brokers reservations for limousine and Town Car services nationwide has exposed the personal and financial information on more than 850,000 well-heeled customers, including Fortune 500 CEOs, lawmakers, and A-list celebrities... Inside the plain text archive apparently stolen from [CorporateCarOnline.com] are more than 850,000 credit card numbers, expiry dates and associated names and addresses. More than one-quarter (241,000) of all compromised card numbers were high- or no-limit American Express accounts." Krebs on Security

>> HIGH INSECURITY: BadBIOS: Next-gen malware or digital myth?, by Serdar Yegulalp: "If indeed BadBIOS is the first in a breed of all-in-one malware that can not only infect a machine in multiple ways but spread that infection in multiple ways as well, new weapons are in order. Those who talk seriously about redesigning computing as we know it from a security-first perspective, such as Peter G. Neumann, might come to seem less like pie-in-the-sky idealists and more like folks who had the right idea all along." InfoWorld

>> SMALL IN JAPAN: Twitter confronts obstacles abroad on members, ads, by Yoree Koh, Jonathan Cheng, Kana Inagaki: "Three-fourths of Twitter Inc. users are overseas. But only one-fourth of its revenue comes from non-U.S. advertisers... In South Korea, it is struggling to attract users. In Japan, it has a strong user base, but has been slow to attract advertisers. (Direct access to Twitter has been blocked in China.)" Wall Street Journal (paywalled)

>> CHECKBOOK JOURNALISM: Yahoo's Mayer on the talent hunt for tech journalists (even from AllThingsD!), by Kara Swisher: "This weekend, a Yahoo recruiter tried to poach two of our fine AllThingsD reporters for what was described as a 'new initiative within our Tech Vertical.'" AllThingsD

>> BIGGER BROTHER: Living in a surveillance state/TEDxBrussels, by Mikko Hypponen: "It turns out that George Orwell was an optimist." YouTube
>>>> Finnish government hacked, Finnish secrets breached PCWorld

>> Windows 8 uptake slows, ditch-XP movement decelerates, by Gregg Keizer Computerworld

>> eBay CEO John Donahoe is bullish on digital currency, and he's keeping tabs on Bitcoin TechCrunch

>> iPad Air adoption 5X that of iPad 4 after opening weekend, says Fiksu TechCrunch

>> Intel's open-source Galileo computer on sale for $69.90 PCWorld

>> Secunia PSI freezes with "Stop running this script?" errors in Windows 8.1 InfoWorld

>> Microsoft kills Skype third-party tools for the desktop InfoWorld

>> KitKat ships with Google's Quickoffice, bringing Microsoft Office editing out of the box to all new Android users TNW

>> IDC: Hadoop commonly used with other big data analytics systems Computerworld UK

>> Let go of that laptop: The ultimate guide to making a tablet your main computer PCWorld

>> Bill Gates: The Internet is not going to save the world FT Magazine

>> Daylight Savings Time is terrible: Here's a simple plan to fix it The Atlantic

>> TWEET O' THE DAY: "Reading your Twitter archive is as uncomfortable as reading your journal from freshman year. What the hell is a Blackberry Curve?!?" @TyLiner

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

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