FAA says don't put it away -- HARDWARE Friday: iPad Air, Nexus 5 on sale -- Senate bill bolsters NSA -- badBIOS: Mysterious Mac malware


November 1, 2013 06:00 PDT | 09:00 EDT | 13:00 UTC

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>> FREE AT LAST: FAA to allow use of electronics for entire flights, by Joab Jackson: "Globe-trotting laptop workaholics and electronic media junkies will soon no longer fidget helplessly during the beginning and ending of their flights: The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has lifted the ban on use of personal electronics during the take-off and landing of airplanes, provided that the electronic devices are used in airplane mode. Over the next few months, each airline will enact their own policies that will permit their passengers to use their own devices through an entire flight." InfoWorld

>>> FAA officially approves using electronics during all phases of flight, The Verge

>> AIR BALL: iPad Air online orders go live in the US, Canada and Europe, by Juli Clover: "Apple began taking orders for its redesigned thin-and-light iPad Air in the United States, Canada, and Europe at midnight Pacific Time... Walmart is selling the iPad Air at $479, a discount of $20, and Best Buy will be price matching Walmart's $479 price tag. Target may also be offering the entry-level 16 GB version for $479." [As of 2:30 am PDT, all sizes in both colors are still available] MacRumors

>>>> iPad Air sells out online in Hong Kong hours after sales open Apple Insider

>>>> Early indicator puts Cook's 'iPad Christmas' prediction at risk 'Analyst points out that Google Trends -- a predictor of past quarter sales -- is down 25% from last year at this time' Computerworld >> DROID DANCE: Google officially announces the Nexus 5 and Android 4.4 KitKat, by Ron Amadeo: "After a million and one leaks, the Nexus 5 has finally been announced. There aren't too many surprises on the hardware front... ships with a new version of Android KitKat, version 4.4... there's a 16GB version for $350 and a 32GB version for $400. As usual, the newest Nexus is sold directly by Google, unlocked and contract-free... available right now from the Google Play Store." [Blogosphere echo chamber: 80+ related articles in tech pubs] Ars Technica

>>>> Google Nexus 5 vs. HTC One vs. Moto X vs. Samsung Galaxy S 4: The best Android phone available [Spoiler alert: Nexus 5] GigaOM

>>>> Black 16GB Nexus 5 sells out in minutes as shipping times slip for other models 9to5Google

>>>> What's inside Android 4.4 KitKat and why you should care TechHive

>>>> Original Galaxy Nexus won't get Android KitKat TechHive

>>>> Google releases Google Play Services 4.0 w/ Google Mobile Ads SDK and new APIs for devs 9to5Mac

>> BREAKING UP IS HARD TO DO: Paul Allen firm urges Microsoft spin-offs, by Stephen Foley and Richard Waters: "Microsoft's next chief executive should consider spinning off consumer businesses including search advertising and the Xbox games console, according to the private investment vehicle of [Paul Allen, Microsoft's co-founder]." The FT (Pay-walled)

>> SCHNEIER ON RAILS: NSA eavesdropping on Google and Yahoo networks, by Bruce Schneier: "It's a measure of how far off the rails the NSA has gone that it's taking its Cold War-era eavesdropping tactics -- surreptitiously eavesdropping on foreign networks -- and applying them to US corporations... Although the Washington Post article specifically talks about Google and Yahoo, you have to assume that all the other major -- and many of the minor -- cloud services are compromised this same way... we need more encryption on the Internet. We have made surveillance too cheap, not just for the NSA but for all nation-state adversaries. We need to make it expensive again." Schneier on Security

>>>> Senate panel approves bill to continue NSA surveillance PCWorld

>>>> Feinstein releases fake NSA reform bill, actually tries to legalize illegal NSA bulk data collection TechDirt

>>>> Tech industry calls for 'oversight and accountability' of NSA surveillance InfoWorld

>> STRANGE BEDFELLOWS: Apple, Microsoft-backed Rockstar consortium sues Google, Samsung over 7 Nortel patents, by Matthew Panzarion: "The Rockstar consortium is an organization backed by Apple, Microsoft, BlackBerry, Ericsson and Sony. It purchased patents off of the defunct telecommunications company Nortel in 2011, in a bidding war with Google. Now, the consortium has filed suit against Google, ASUSTek, HTC, Huawei, LG, Pantech and ZTE over those patents." TechCrunch

>> SCARY BEDTIME STORY: Meet "badBIOS," the mysterious Mac and PC malware that jumps airgaps, by Dan Goodin: "At times as I've reported this story, its outline has struck me as the stuff of urban legend, the advanced persistent threat equivalent of a Bigfoot sighting. Indeed, [security researcher Dragos] Ruiu has conceded that while several fellow security experts have assisted his investigation, none has peer reviewed his process or the tentative findings that he's beginning to draw... It's too early to say with confidence that what Ruiu has been observing is a USB-transmitted rootkit that can burrow into a computer's lowest levels and use it as a jumping off point to infect a variety of operating systems with malware that can't be detected. It's even harder to know for sure that infected systems are using high-frequency sounds to communicate with isolated machines." Ars Technica

>>>> badBIOS features explained Errata Security

>> FIRST LOOK: New XenMobile version speeds user access, actions, by John Cox: "Citrix has added several features to its mobility management software to make it easier for mobile users to authenticate and jump into online meetings, and easier for IT groups to set up large-scale device deployments... Citrix is exploiting its integration with companion products like GoToMeeting, Citrix ShareFile, and GoToAssist, to make it easier for mobile users to work and work together." NetworkWorld

>> REDMOND RESHUFFLING: Microsoft reorg: More pieces fall into place, by Mary Jo Foley: "The Windows Embedded team is now part of the unified operating system division under Terry Myerson... The software side of the Perceptive Pixel team is now part of the unified operating system group, as well. ... The Outlook.com, Windows Mail and Calendar app teams which were initially part of the unified OS group are now part of the Applications and Services group under Qi Lu." ZDNet

>> SHORT COURSE: Automated manufacturing for 3-D printers, by Mike Orcutt: "In theory, 3-D printing gives consumers the ability to conceive of and make various products. But designing many objects requires specialized knowledge of geometry, materials, and manufacturing processes. Researchers at PARC are now building software tools meant to automate that kind of judgment. The goal, says PARC CEO Stephen Hoover, is to build programs that enable non-experts to "kind of think their way through a design space" before sending any instructions to the printer." MIT Technology Review

>> BUBBLE WATCH: The $4 billion secret: Don't bother making any money, by Sam Biddle: "Pinterest and Snapchat have two very important things in common: they were both recently, insanely valued by investors at around $4 billion, and neither of them has made a single dime in the entirety of their existence. How is this not a bubble, and why aren't more people saying this is crazy?" ValleyWag

>> TUESDAY BLUES: Ten years of Patch Tuesdays: Why it's time to move on, by Christopher Budd: "I believe that, while Patch Tuesday has been a very good thing, we need to move beyond it to something newer and better -- something more suited to today's threat environment. Ten years from now, Patch Tuesday needs to be a thing of the past." GeekWire

>> THE BIG REVEAL: Google's secret revealed: Barge to offer high-end showrooms, party deck, by Ken Bastida: CBS San Francisco

>> Amazon launches AWS SDK for JavaScript in the browser TechCrunch

>> Oracle shareholders vote against Ellison's compensation package InfoWorld

>> Meet Flurry, the company that tracks more phones than Google or Facebook Forbes

>> IBM to nix SmartCloud Enterprise, migrate customers to newly acquired SoftLayer cloud NetworkWorld

>> Strategy Analytics: Android smartphone shipments up to 81.3% in Q3 2013, iOS down to 13.4%, Windows Phone at 4.1% TechCrunch

>> I watched a 3D printer create the end of the world from a hot tub in Brooklyn Motherboard

>> Government agency compromised by fake Facebook hottie ZDNet

>> Microsoft needs your help to nail the Windows 8.1 update 0xc1900101 Blue Screens InfoWorld

>> Liberty Reserve co-founder pleads guilty in $6 billion money-laundering case The Verge

>> Gartner: Cloud-based security as a service set to take off NetworkWorld

>> Oracle, Google and Red Hat engineers ride to the rescue of Healthcare.gov AllThingsD

>> Is Comcast buying the Seattle mayoral election to dodge homegrown competition? TechCrunch

>> T Bone Burnett vs. Silicon Valley: 'We should go up there with pitchforks and torches' The Hollywood Reporter


>> TWEET O' THE DAY: "Who gets in the Tech Surge 'dream team' should be hotly debated. Like All-Star voting. And you should get announced running out of a tunnel." @jonathanglick

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

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