Samsung and NVIDIA are throwing vague patents around inside a broken system...
Published in Editorials

The US patent system is broken. There is not really much more to say about that it is and has been broken for many years and probably will continue to be broken for many years to come. Now why am I bringing this up? Well in looking over the way patents are filed, processed, and approved you will find that there are a large number of patents that are essentially the same thing just with a little twist. This type of patent allows for someone to put a legal hold on a very broad concept and then comeback and sue someone at a later date. Over the last few years we have watched a number of companies work the system with this type of patent and worse.

21 November 2014
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ADATA’s SP900NS38 256GB M.2 SATA SSD Review Featured

The world of storage is evolving very quickly as the way PCs are built change. We have watched as the traditional single dive systems have given way to hybrid drives, multiple disk systems and even systems with additional cache in them. All of these measures are designed to give you more options for your system, but there is (at times) a limit to what can be done. This is typically the size of the drive. For years the typical disk was 3.5 inches and about ½ of what the common bay height was. With the original SSDs this dropped significantly and has been followed on by mSATA, mini-mSATA and now M.2. These offer high density storage in a very small package. Today we are checking out ADATA’s SP900NS38 256GB M.2 SATA SSD. Let’s see what kind of performance it offers shall we?

Keeping the Backdoor open... how the NSA's collection of 0-day exploits hurts us all
Published in Editorials

The world lives in fear of zero-day exploits although the average person does not even know it. A zero-day exploit is a bug or a flaw that has not been discovered by the developers yet, but is known to someone outside. This can be good guys, bad guys or other, but it is still a flaw that can be used to do harm to a computer system and no one has a patch for it yet. When the good guys (security researchers) know about them they work with companies to patch them. When the bad guys know about these things get very ugly indeed. But what happens if someone knows about one (or a bunch of them) and does not tell anyone at all?

Ubisoft Tries to Slam Pirates by leaving out the FOV slider in Far Cry 4... Too bad it seems to have Backfired
Published in News

The idea of hardcoding a flaw into a game to identify pirate is a pretty old one and one that has been used on more than one occasion. Ubisoft has done this with their most recent game Far Cry 4 by removing a control from the game. The control is the field of view (FOV) in the game. Apparently when the game was put out this control was missing and it was not given out until a patch that you can only get with a legally purchased copy of the game.

11 Bit Studios Offers Free Steam Codes on The Pirate Bay
Published in News

There is a misconception in the industry as a whole that “pirates” are inherently evil people and bent on nothing less than the destruction of civilized society. The fact that this sounds like the plot from a bad movie/game is probably not a coincidence. In Hollywood at least the way they portray piracy is right out of fantasy land from their numbers to their claims on how they are about keeping jobs. In the gaming industry it is often not the developers that worry about piracy, but the big distribution/publishing groups. They are very worried about the money they make and also follow the same line as Hollywood when talking about the effects of piracy on their business.

Ubisoft desperately searching for someone to blame over AC Unity, but this one is all on them
Published in News

It seems that Ubisoft is trying to get out from under the stigma the bad launch of Assassin’s Creed Unity. After pushing what many are calling a half-baked game, they have made a few excuses and have also promised different patches to remedy the bugs including a day one patch that really did not do much to make things better. So what is Ubisoft pointing at now to remove blame from themselves? Well some of the choices are entertaining to say the least.

TOR users tracked using Flow records with 81% accuracy
Published in News

Just when you thought it was safe to get back on the internet privately. Although we have maintained that TOR has never been the end-all of anonymity we are surprised to finally see public conformation of techniques that have been around for years. In a report that discusses the use of flow records for detecting users on proxy networks we find that the tools to track you through TOR and many other networks have been right there all along.

Ubisoft will take a hit from Assassin's Creed Unity Bugs and the 12 hour Review Embago Delay
Published in Editorials

Ubisoft is under a lot of pressure since the launch of the Assassin’s Creed Unity. The game had a large number of bugs along with some rather disappointing performance to boot (30fps). In the days leading up to the launch Ubisoft attempted to tell everyone know that 30fps was more than enough and that it was in line with a cinematic experience. The number of articles making fun of these rather poor excuses was quite large and while trying to pass off a poor performing game as something wonderful is not unexpected it is still in rather poor taste if circumstances make it look like you might have done it on purpose.

Another SSL/TLS stack falls as Microsoft admits their version has a bug in it too
Published in Editorials

Encryption is an interesting thing. On the surface it offers protection from prying eyes and sense of security in protecting your communication and files. At least that is what you should feel when talking about encryption. The problem is that encryption is only as secure as the protocol and API that is in use. Even if you have a rock solid certificate the protocol and APIs that you use to connect can be compromised to by-pass this. This is what has happened to almost every major SSL/TLS stack. So far in 2014 we have watched them fall one at a time to the dismay of security experts.

Darkhotel Attack Targets Hotel Guest Wireless Networks
Published in News

The targeting of travelers is something that is a very old idea. To the would-be attacker you are getting a target that is not familiar with their surroundings and (in many cases) has a lot of money on them. In the “old days” the target was the cash they brought with them. This quickly changed to a number of scams to get access to their credit card numbers and the cash that they protected. Still the idea was to go after the traveler because they were easy targets when they were out and about.