Google Street Car Tracked via GPS Tracking

This one will definitely put a smile on the faces of all those who think Google’s Street View service is invading their privacy: members of German Free Art & Technology group (F.A.T.) have noticed Google’s Street View car in Berlin and decided to attach a GPS device onto it and track its movement.

The result of their efforts can be seen on a large map, and although it doesn’t seem to show anything out of the ordinary – the Google Street View car seemed to be driving around Berlin as it should be, until they realized they’re tracked and removed the GPS device – but it was nice to be able to reverse the roles and snoop on Google, even for a short while.

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iPad: Apple might sell 1.5 million this year…

We can talk about the iPad as much as we want, but we all know that cold, hard sales numbers will do the real talking. When iPad lands in stores, if it doesn’t fly off the shelves, it will be further proof that Apple has made a rare stumble this time.

AppleInsider rounded up some predictions from Wall Street analysts, and boy, do they not agree. Some of them are calling the iPad “risky”; some are saying that it “has potential”, and some are saying it’s “another winner”. How does that translate into numbers? Anywhere from one to five million in the first year.

Mike Abramsky from RBC Capital Markets forecasts first-year sales of 5 million, claiming the iPad is “a revolutionary e-reading, browsing, media, gaming experience,” but also noting that it lacks certain sought-for features, like multitasking and a camera.

Kaufman Bros’ Shaw Wu didn’t predict sales, but claims that Apple intends to build 5 million units in the first year, and 10 million by the end of the second year. Analyst Charlie Wolf from Needham & Company is predicting that Apple will sell 4 million units in the first twelve months, but Oppenheimer’s Yair Reiner and Brian Marshall from Broadpoint.AmTech are far more cautious, predicting 1.1 and 2.2 million units sold in the first year, respectively.

Apple has surprised us many times in its history, and no one can be certain just how well the iPad will sell. If it beats these estimates, though, it will cement its place in history as one of the most successful tech companies of all time.

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I have a new blog!

I have a new blog. It is called, ipromisethisisreallyme.wordpress.com . It is about my life. And Only my life, no technology allowed.

So go, Check it out!

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Twitter Down(It’s Back!)

Update: After about an hour of downtime, Twitter seems to be up and running. Here’s what the Twitter team had to say: “We are experiencing an outage due to an extremely high number of whales. Our on-call team is working on a fix.”

It’s good to know that Twitter got those extra fail whales out of its series of tubes. The exact cause hasn’t been released yet, but we’ll update you when we have that info. – It’s not just you: Twitter is completely down, and has been for at least 15 minutes. What exactly what took down the microblogging service, we don’t know (some speculate that a wave of tweets due to this morning’s 6.1 earthquake in Haiti could be partly responsible). It’s late pacific time (or early, depending on your perspective), meaning most of the Twitter team is probably asleep and a response to the situation will be delayed. Since the DDoS attacks last August, Twitter’s been doing pretty well in terms of uptime (though it’s had its share of slowdowns). We will update you when we learn what’s happened. In the meantime, you’ve got Facebook to update your friends on your frustrations, or our comments section below.

Internet Explorer: Security Hole

With world governments advising citizens to switch from Internet Explorer to alternative browsers, and an unpatched security hole in at least two major versions of Internet Explorer, Microsoft has to do something to restore faith in their browser. Easiest way to do it, apparently, is saying that other browsers are even worse than IE.

Microsoft’s UK security chief Cliff Evans told Techradar that “The net effect of switching [from IE] is that you will end up on less secure browser,” and that “the risk [over this specific] exploit is minimal compared to Firefox or other competing browsers… you will be opening yourself up to security issues.”

Evans then downplays the seriousness of this problem. “The reality of the risk is minimal, even if you have IE6; you would have to go to a website running the exploit,” he says. Even if we disregard the fact that many very serious browser vulnerabilities work in that way – e.g. you have to visit a website running an exploit to be affected – there’s still the fact that this particular vulnerability isn’t just lab-tested, it’s been successfully used on unsuspecting victims in the real world. This alone makes it as serious as security holes go.

Evans continues to undermine the security record of other browsers. “There are broader risks and issues with other browsers,” he claims, at the same time admitting that the IE vulnerability that caused this entire mess probably isn’t present with other browsers. “I’m not aware that the vulnerability exists in other products, but those products may have other vulnerabilities,” he says.

While one can say that absolutely no piece of software is ever completely secure, this logic is flawed. Microsoft’s IE has a serious, unpatched security vulnerability, and pointing to possible holes that other browsers may or may not have won’t make it go away.

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Google has decided to postpone its Nexus One launch in China, which was supposed to happen on Wednesday, agencies report. Although Google has entered talks with the Chinese government to discuss the future of their search business in China, it’s now obvious that, until the situation is resolved, other aspects of Google’s business in China will suffer, too.

Together with the news that China Unicom may be postponing all Android-based phone launches, this really shows how big the fallout from the Google-China dispute really is. It’s not only about Google’s search business in China. Google also stands behind one of the most important mobile platforms of today: Android, and cutting business ties with China would mean the demise of Android in one of the world’s biggest markets.

Google spokeswoman Marsha Wang declined to give a reason for the postponement, or a new date for the Nexus One launch.

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Yoube Down(Update: Its Back!)

Update: it seems that the issues were resolved, and that YouTube is once again fully operational.

YouTube is currently experiencing some downtime issues, reporting a “Http/1.1 Service Unavailable” error or a a 500 Internal Server error. It’s been going on for approximately 20 minutes, and Twitter is already abuzz about the downtime.

Currently there’s no word from Google about the issues, but given its recent troubles with Chinese hackers, as well as hacker attacks on Baidu and other large web services, it’s not too far fetched to think this downtime is a result of a cyber attack. We’ll let you know when we find out more.

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