Hacked & Burned: tech news

Botnets all up in your Wordpress, Anonymous's News site, and a house powered by algae

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TUMBLR OF THE WEEK: WWWTXT

A catalogue of quotes describing the internet that was (circa 1988 - 1994) in the words of its pioneers, set against a sumptuously rendered fantasy GUI from yesteryear.

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TECHONOMY OF THE WEEK: BIQ House

Drive down your building's electricity costs with bio-reactor algae panelling. This will be especially handy as your Bitcoin carbon footprint increases. A Hamburg apartment building powered by algae bio-reactors will open at the end of April.

PULL LIST OF THE WEEK: Your Anon News

Your Anon News, a website dedicated to the reporting currently conducted via Anonymous's Twitter and Tumblr, has been successfully funded via IndieGoGo. Well worth adding that page to your “watch-this-space” list.

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GIF OF THE WEEK: Anthony Antonellis

Really enjoying this GIF collection that perfectly captures post human body horror in the format of the moment.

WETWARE OF THE WEEK: Genetic Patent Trolls in the Dock

Whereas software patents occasionally raise eyebrows due to the level of farce they po-facedly pursue they have nothing on the genuinely scary genetic patent landscape. A crux case being aired in the US supreme court this week revolves around two genetic biomarkers crucial to determining one's risk of developing breast cancer. Myriad Genetics owns the right to those two genes, meaning noone can work with these genes without risk of being sued under patent violation. The US Supreme Court will adjudicate on the legality of this situation, and fortunately they seem skeptical about the viability of patenting isolated genes.

GEEK OF THE WEEK: Tony Day

You cannot fault Tony Day for his ambition. He hopes to build an open source high frequency algorithm trading platform. HFT's are the impossibly fast algorithms commonplace in Wall Street and infamously responsible for 'flash crashes' in the past.

WEBSITE OF THE WEEK: Call in the Night

Who says that technology is killing the fine art of conversation. Call In the Night makes use of a lightweight tech platform to host conversations between willing volunteers in the small hours of the early morning. Previous conversations are available as podcasts on the aforementioned site

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HARDWARE OF THE WEEK: Biohacked DVD player

Biohackers continue to find uses for defunct computational machinery. Researchers at the KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm have modified a DVD drive into a laser scanning microscope that can accurately analyze blood and perform cellular imaging. That opens doors to HIV detection.

CYBERCRIME OF THE WEEK: Botnets want to assimilate your Wordpress site!

If you've been following Hacked&Burned this past month you'll have noticed Botnets have enjoyed a starring role of late, defrauding advertisers of revenue and mapping the internet. It's worth pointing out that Botnets are standard tools for cybercriminals. And it turns out that a Botnet recruitment drive, focued on wordpress, is feared by cybersecurity specialists. If you use wordpress then you'd be advised to heed their warnings.

And as a bonus, here’s a handy guide to rolling your own botnet.

SCIENCE OF THE WEEK: BioEngineered Kidneys

Not much tops Massachusetts lab jar grown kidney, which they then successfully transplanted into a living mouse. The major innovation here is that they scrub donated organs of their native cells through a thorough soap bath. These decellularised edifices are seeded with stem cells and incubated until ready to function.


HACK(S) OF THE WEEK: Hacker Scare Tactics

Technically these are more akin to exploits than hacks. An exploit is but one tool in a proficient hackers repertoire. Respectively, these exploits claim to be able to commandeer airplanes via smartphones and utilise electrical cars as a way to cripple the electricity grid. Interesting as they are, whenever someone claims the hacker bogeymen are going to derail the technological necessities of 21st century life proceed with skepticism.

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