Friday Tech News Roundup #22

Below are 10 tech news that I found interesting and are related to topics I care about.

Facebook feed change sacrifices time spent and news outlets for “well-being” – Facebook is making a huge change to its News Feed algorithm to prioritize friends and posts that spark comments between them at the expense of public content, news outlets, and importantly, the total time spent and ads you see on the social network. Techcrunch

Google claims its Spectre and Meltdown mitigation results in no performance degradation – It’s been a long week since we first learned about the now infamous Spectre and Meltdown chip vulnerabilities. One of the issues with mitigating the danger these vulnerabilities pose is that they could result in serious performance degradation. In a blog post today, Google claimed their solutions resulted in no performance degradation across the different mitigation techniques they have developed. Techcrunch

American drone companies aren’t built to compete – GoPro’s announcement this week that it would exit the drone business was greeted by many observers as a foregone conclusion. Karma, the company’s first foray into drones, had sold poorly after an embarrassing recall in 2016. Under pressure to cut costs amid slowing sales in its core action-camera business, GoPro’s hand was forced. Viewed in that light, Karma was just one more tech company side hustle that didn’t pay off. The Verge

New High Sierra bug lets you change App Store preferences with any password – A new bug has been discovered on devices running macOS High Sierra that allows anyone to access your App Store system preferences. The bug was spotted by MacWorld and the bug will be fixed in the next update as users running the 10.13.3 beta haven’t been able to reproduce it. It should be noted that the bug doesn’t allow access to sensitive user information on the Mac and doesn’t create exposure for users. User and other system preferences can’t be changed without the admin’s actual password. The admin also has to be logged in already for access. The Verge

How Meltdown and Spectre Patches Will Affect HPC Workloads – There have been claims that the fixes for the Meltdown and Spectre security vulnerabilities, named the KPTI (aka KAISER) patches, are going to affect application performance by 10-30 percent. The patch makes any call from user space into the operating system much more expensive, so I/O intensive applications are likely to be the worst hit. What does this really mean for HPC workloads? HPCWire

The Living Heart Project Wins Three Prestigious Awards for HPC Simulation -Imagine creating a treatment plan for a patient on the other side of the world, or testing a drug without ever putting subjects at risk. 3D modeling and simulation tools have opened the door to a new age of healthcare. Operations like the Living Heart Project are uniting industry-leading researchers, doctors, educators, and technology manufacturers to reach a higher standard for personalized medicine. Leveraging advanced modeling and simulation capabilities, the Living Heart Project has developed highly accurate, validated models of the human heart which can be personalized by patients’ unique traits and conditions. The Living Heart Project is a growing ecosystem that is fueling the collaborative development of commercially available heart models and exploring novel digital therapies. HPCWire

Android TV box sellers charged with copyright infringement in unprecedented move against piracy – In the first prosecution of its kind here, two Android TV box sellers have been charged with “wilfully infringing” the copyright of four companies – telcos StarHub and Singtel, entertainment giant Fox Networks Group and football’s Premier League. Channel Newsasia

One senator is probing Apple for more information on iPhone throttling issues – When it was discovered that iOS developers had quietly added a feature to the operating system that throttled processors in older phones with degraded batteries, the public was irate. In fact, people seemed more angry about the slowing down than about the phones that were unexpectedly shutting down which is what prompted the software modification in the first place. Techspot

Mac shipments up 7.3% year-on-year, reports IDC, despite a tough U.S. market – Mac shipments in Q4 2014 were up 7.3% year-on-year, according to IDC data. Apple substantially outperformed the PC market as a whole, which grew by just 0.7%. 9to5Mac

Apple shares revised iOS Security Guide w/ details on Face ID, Apple Pay Cash, more – Apple today has shared a revised version of its iOS Security Guide, dated January 2018. The new document, which comes in at 78 pages long includes new details on Apple Pay Cash, Face ID, and more… 9to5Mac

Journal #128 – I flew my first drone

I decided to change the way I give titles to my entries. I found the previous style to be a little monotonous and boring. But if you prefer the previous style, let me know in the comments below and I will change it back.

Set my alarm clock to wake me up at 0645hrs because of the need for me to take the omeprazole half an hour before food. I felt like shit (got a headache and puffy eyes) waking up so early as my normal waking time is around 9 or 10 in the morning.

Had my breakfast, shower, and out of the house I went. Half way towards the train station, I realised I don’t have enough time and so I went to flag a cab. Went to the training center.

Upon arriving, signed my attendance and went into the classroom.

We went through theory first, which was a little dry but necessary. It covered the rules and regulation. After that, we went for a quick break and are issued with our own drone, the Syma X5HW-1.

This drone is a trainer drone and can take quite a fair bit of beating. We are advised to practice on this drone first until we are familiar before going on to the more expensive ones like dji Mavic Pro or Phantom 4.

Now, according to the trainer, this specific drone is one of the best ones out there for beginners undergoing training and it cost only about SG$120, maybe less or more, depending on where you get it.

Here are some videos that I took of the training.

I also bought a miniature drone at the training center with the intention to practice flying at home or indoor before bringing out the X5HW. After finishing a written test, we went home.

For those (Singapore Citizens only) who are interested in taking this course, please go to this site.

So upon reaching home, I unpacked my bag, put down the drone at home, showered, and joined my family for dinner at Jurong Point. We ate at Dian Xiao Er. After dinner,  we walked around the mall for a little bit.

While at the mall, I also decided to get a new pair of running shoes since I got flat feet. My current pair of running shoes just isn’t suitable for me. It’s pretty worn down and gross anyway.

After that, we took the bus home and I started sorting out the boxes for the drone, tested flying the miniature drone. Well, it ran out of battery, and so I put it on charge immediately. I also went to charge the battery that came with the X5HW.

That’s all for now, I shall go and catch up on tv shows.

Here I conclude my journal for today.