The Security-Practices Edition Saturday, July 8, 2017

I Got Hacked And All I Got Was This New SIM Card, by Justin Williams, Carpeaqua

I have spent the morning trying to evaluate my security practices and there's not much I can think about that I'd do otherwise. Twitter tells me I shouldn't use SMS-based 2 factor authentication and should use app-based 2 factor instead. I agree! The problem is that some sites like PayPal don't offer the better security. The alternative is to just go back to single factor, which I am not so sure is the best solution either.

I don't even place blame on PayPal for this directly. The fault lies with the AT&T call center representative who let someone manipulate my account without knowing my passcode. I've been told this is being escalated internally, but I haven't heard anything from corporate channels, so I remain skeptical until I see or hear something.

‘Baby Driver’ Stirs Nostalgia For iPods, by Sridhar Pappu, New York Times

When he first began work on “Baby Driver” in 2015, Mr. Totten was unaware that Apple had discontinued the production of its much beloved iPod Classic. Soon he and his staff went about tracking down as many as they could, spending roughly $2,500 on some 100 iPods of all varieties and vintages.

“It forced me to look more analytically at something I hadn’t given much thought about,” Mr. Totten said, “because you see they went through all these iterations. Just sourcing them was a challenge. It was time-consuming but fun. I got to see iPods I never even heard of.”

Pokémon Go And Plymouth: How Games Are Impacting Urban Design, by Luke Richards, Ars Technica

I moved to Plymouth in 2013 and I’ve come to view the city as something of a let’s-make-things-happen kind of place. It’s an attribute that has certainly helped keep me here, and the gaming community is a case in point. The renaissance in tabletop games is not unique to the area, but the quick emergence of community-led boardgame meetups around Plymouth over the last couple of years have surprised even the die-hards who founded them in the first place. Now there are weekly, fortnightly, and monthly get-togethers in different venues across the city—and tournaments on top of that.

But Plymouth’s zeal for location-based mobile multiplayer games (Ingress, too, has a keen following here) was even more impressive. What was it about this naval city and its ongoing regeneration that made it so suitable for the wandering gamer? I spoke to some local urban designers, geospatial experts, and gamers to find out.


The Best Packing Apps For Travelers Who Hate The Pain Of Packing, by Mike Richard, The Manual

If you’re not one of the few masochist travelers who actually enjoys packing (like this author), smartphone technology is here to help. These three mobile packing apps aim to make the process as quick, painless, and mindless as possible.

Newton Mail Review: The Best Email Client You Probably Won't Buy, by Shubham Agarwal, TechPP

The company calls it “supercharged emailing” and in a way, that isn’t an exaggeration at all. For starters, Newton Mail is compatible with almost every emailing platform there is and lets you juggle between multiple accounts without any hassles or annoying loading screens. The app features a series of supplementing utilities which you only see in third-party extensions.

Game Recommendation: Monument Valley 2, by David Sparks, MacSparky

There are no zombies or killers with machine guns. Just a mother and her daughter and some satisfying puzzles. I found the game a perfect way to relax and recommend it to you for this weekend.


A Favorite Hack, by David Smith

Kind of awkwardly though, I realized that in order to achieve this I’d have to calculate how many 1s there were in the number. I poked a round a bit on the mathematical side of this but couldn’t work out a way to count how many 1s there were in a given number via mathematical means. There might be a way to do this, but I couldn’t find it.


The Most Important Object In Computer Graphics History Is This Teapot, by Jesse Dunietz, Nautilus

One day over tea, Newell told his wife Sandra that he needed more interesting models. Sandra suggested that he digitize the shapes of the tea service they were using, a simple Melitta set from a local department store. It was an auspicious choice: The curves, handle, lid, and spout of the teapot all conspired to make it an ideal object for graphical experiment. Unlike other objects, the teapot could, for instance, cast a shadow on itself in several places. Newell grabbed some graph paper and a pencil, and sketched it.

Bottom of the Page

My iPhone knows that I only use the spotlight search to launch apps. It knows that I've turned off all sort of search content and suggestions. And yet, one little typo, and the app I wanted to launch is nowhere to be found in the search result.

Can't wait for the promised age of machine learning.


I have three iPods in my drawer. The latest nano is still working, but the square nano and the mini have both died.

Oh, and I'm sure there were one or two iPod app in the pile of old iPhones in the same drawer.


Thanks for reading.