Profile of Larry LoebBlogger, Informationweek
Member Since: 6/5/2014
News & Commentary Posts: 140
Larry Loeb has written for many of the last century's major "dead tree" computer magazines, having been, among other things, a consulting editor for BYTE magazine and senior editor for the launch of WebWeek. He has written a book on the Secure Electronic Transaction Internet protocol. His latest book has the commercially obligatory title of Hack Proofing XML. He's been online since uucp "bang" addressing (where the world existed relative to !decvax), serving as editor of the Macintosh Exchange on BIX and the VARBusiness Exchange. His first Mac had 128 KB of memory, which was a big step up from his first 1130, which had 4 KB, as did his first 1401. You can e-mail him at [email protected].
Articles by Larry Loeb
This week, the FBI said it now doesn't need Apple to crack into an iPhone. However, what does this tell us about encryption and the overall state of hardware security?
Internet of Things security is only beginning to get serious attention. However, it might already be too late. In the era of quantum computing, the fragile security that protects IoT devices may crumble faster than you think.
Hot on the heels of Microsoft's Project Oxford, Google is bringing its Cloud Vision API into beta. The offering allows software developers to create new ways of reading faces and emotions to help push the limits of what can be done with AI and machine learning.
With millions of machines potentially vulnerable to attacks on their BIOS firmware, Dell has introduced a verification tool designed for enterprise IT to monitor users' machines and intervene if an attack is detected. The cloud-based tool takes a different approach than other BIOS offerings on the market.
The Obama Administration announced changes to the Office of Personnel Management designed to ameliorate the flawed systems and processes that led to a massive data breach in late 2014. The plans -- and the steps taken to get there -- hold lessons for any IT organization.
Every year, the worlds of marketing and technology collide in Las Vegas for one week during CES. The 2016 CES, which included drones, virtual reality, and more, proved no exception.
Is Google's move to an open source version of Oracle's Java Development Kit for upcoming Android OS development a way for the company to hedge its bets as its legal battle with Oracle continues to wind through the courts?
First announced in 2014, the LinkNYC network, which looks to install WiFi access points in out-of-date NYC pay phones, started rolling out the first of these installations this week. However, some issues of personal information hover below the surface.
Philadelphia is expected to benefit from Comcast's new DOCSIS 3.1 network, which can theoretically offer Internet upload speeds of 1Gbps.
Google is developing a smarter messaging app based on its artificial intelligence and chatbot tech, according to a Wall Street Journal report.
In keeping with Tim Cook's professed desire to keep customer information private, Apple objected to a new UK bill that would expand the government's ability to snoop into citizens' messages and Internet use.
Ericsson and Apple called a truce to their ongoing patent-infringement claims and signed a global cross-licensing agreement that has Apple paying royalties on wireless devices.
Microsoft and the government of China have come to a new agreement that will bring Windows 10 to the Chinese market. However, this version of Windows will conform to certain state demands.
The controversial Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (CISA) has been wrapped in crucial legislation handling much of the federal government's funding.
IBM announces that its partnership with Apple has yielded more than 100 IBM MobileFirst for iOS apps.
The $67 billion deal between Dell and EMC is on track for approval. However, Dell needs to finance the acquisition, and it may sell its Perot Systems division to raise $5 billion, according to several reports.
Google announced the alpha testing of its own Content Delivery Network for the company's cloud computing platform. Google's CDN offering is a direct response to similar services from AWS and Microsoft Azure.
Facebook is open sourcing the hardware design for the servers it uses to train artificial intelligence software.
Big Blue gets a multi-year grant from the US intelligence community for the development of quantum computing technology. A universal quantum computer could tackle challenges such as safeguarding against cyberattacks and speeding up medical R&D.
The IBM Security QRadar analytics platform is now open to developers, enabling them to build custom apps. The company also launched the Security App Exchange, a marketplace in which the security community can create and share apps.
IBM announced its free, browser-based Swift Sandbox, which lets developers write in Apple's programming language and execute their code in a server environment -- on top of Linux.
Google has released its Cardboard Camera app, which looks to bring the company's VR experience to Android-based smartphones.
Open Whisper Systems announces an open beta of the desktop version of its encrypted messaging application Signal. The app is endorsed by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.
Not satisfied with online sales and cloud computing, Amazon has been awarded two patents to create augmented reality in the living room.
Following an 11-year battle, Nicholas Merrill finally gets to publicly talk about the FBI's National Security Letter, which demanded he hand over a wide swath of private information about one of his ISP customers.
BlackBerry is threatening to leave Pakistan within the next month if the government keeps insisting on backdoor access to the company's messaging service.
Amazon told an unknown number of customers that their passwords could have been potentially exposed to a third party, but claimed it has corrected the issue.
After pulling its Windows 10 November update after reported problems with some users' privacy settings preferences, Microsoft reinstates the update.
About nine days after releasing its first major November update for Windows 10, Microsoft is yanking the downloadable version and replacing it with the build released originally in July.
Earlier this month, Yahoo began blocking some Yahoo Mail users if they had ad-blocking software turned on. Yahoo has been struggling to keep its Mail users, but the move has been derided on social media.
Microsoft and Volvo show off their plans to make car buying a more virtual experience using Redmond's augmented reality headset.
Amazon has quietly added support for multi-factor authentication for customers using its ecommerce site in the US. Why would the company do this now?
The terror attacks in Paris on November 13 have reignited a long-running debate about whether device makers and app developers should be required to give government agencies a backdoor or to hand over encryption keys.
Microsoft has teamed with Code.org to roll out a Minecraft-themed coding tutorial as part of the annual Hour of Code. The event aims to inspire broader interest in programming and help create the next generation of coders.
In an interview with an Irish newspaper Apple CEO Tim Cook said there are no plans to create a Mac and iPad hybrid.
First Alert rolls out the first smoke/carbon monoxide detector using HomeKit, Apple's smart home platform.
Facebook's latest Global Government Requests Report shows that worldwide government requests for data and the number of pieces of content restricted continue to rise.
Microsoft announces new services in its Project Oxford suite of developer tools based on machine learning and artificial intelligence.
Comcast has reset the passwords for about 200,000 email accounts that appeared for sale on the Dark Web. However, there are a lot of questions about what the company knows and if there's more information out there to take.
The FCC's dismissal of Consumer Watchdog's petition to require companies including Google, Facebook, Netflix, and LinkedIn to honor "Do not track" requests was a blow to privacy advocates. But it was the smart call.
New security research from Lookout suggests that several strains of trojanized adware are targeting third-party Android app stores. The safe bet is to use Google Play.
This week, the FCC fined two companies, including the Hilton Hotels chain, for obstructing an investigation into its alleged blocking of personal WiFi hot spots. It's the latest salvo in a battle that needs to be fought.
Mozilla's Firefox 42 includes advanced protection against tracking ads, analytics trackers, and social share buttons.
Apple's fourth-generation Apple TV went on sale last week, and so far the reviews have been mixed.
The genius mathematician who created Boolean algebra and symbolic logic is regarded as the father of the information age gets a Google Doodle for his 200th birthday.
Some major mobile carriers are selling your data under the radar, and it's potentially worth $24.1 billion this year.
IBM announces six more companies that will create apps and services using IBM's Watson Developer Cloud.
A steady stream of executives exiting Yahoo in recent months shows a lack of confidence that CEO Marissa Mayer can turn things around.
Facebook releases an update to its iOS app that will stop the excessive drain on iPhone batteries that users were reporting.
A Fortinet security researcher says the fitness tracker can be hacked by anyone within Bluetooth range. It doesn't matter whether or not it's paired with another device.
Apple and Dropbox join the swelling ranks of tech companies voicing their opposition to the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (CISA) and the lack of privacy protections.
IBM's decision is a "goodwill" gesture aimed at expansion in the Chinese market.
Sprint joins other major carriers in setting lower priority levels for heavy users.
Apple's new support and features for the iWork suite of apps refine usability.
August unveils a new smart-home access platform that integrates Apple's HomeKit and Siri.
Google will fold Divshot into its development platform for app developers Firebase.
Apple announced an update to its iMac to include Retina display and fifth- and sixth-generation Intel Core processors.
The Obama administration will not push legislation that would compel companies to decrypt customer data, but will continue to try to persuade them to give access when needed.
The apps removed from Apple's store installed root certificates that could have potentially allowed third-parties to view private user information.
In what appears to be a move to protect the brand of Google's parent company Alphabet, the Internet giant has bought the domain abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz.com.
The FCC grants AT&T a waiver of its rules for the hearing impaired, allowing the carrier to roll out its WiFi calling on the iPhone and other devices.
Apple's promise that iOS 9 would trim down memory use in iPhones and other devices can finally be realized with a newly rolled out iCloud delivery fix.
Facebook inks a deal with French satellite company Eutelsat to provide wireless Internet access to Africa.
A report from the New York Times removes doubt that ad blockers make a difference in the mobile experience, but at what cost?
The latest version of the Mac OS X, called El Capitan, looks a lot like the last version with some visual and functionality improvements. However, it's the added security that makes the upgrade worth it.
In an effort to place a more definitive financial value on open source code, the Linux Foundation has released a report that estimates the development costs of its Collaborative Projects.
Updated medical classifications for billing purposes could cause problems for insurers, and may end up jacking up healthcare costs.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg wants to deliver universal Internet access by 2020, but one of the biggest beneficiaries of that is his own social media site.
Apple promised that iOS 9 would offer App Thinning to trim down memory use in iPhones and other devices. However, some key app-slicing pieces are missing.
It's official: ARIN finds that North America no longer has any IPv4 address available. With IoT and mobile creating more demand, what's next?
IBM is building new West Coast office in San Francisco for its IBM Watson system, while Big Blue has added some capabilities, including ones for social media and productivity.
Surprising players, such as IBM, are adopting the blockchain technology known best for Bitcoin transactions.
Marco Arment, who created one of the most popular ad-blocking tools for iOS 9, had second thoughts about what he created. Will other ad blockers follow, and will users care?
Apple may have won the latest round against Samsung in court, but the implications of the case are still evolving.
A new survey of large enterprises finds a good deal of interest in wearables, especially smartwatches, that is driving the market to look beyond novel healthcare and fitness uses.
NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio wants computer science education offered to all students within the next 10 years. Finding the right teachers, however, may be difficult.
A new program from the Obama White House is looking to spend $160 million on so-called Smart Cities to improve communication and quality-of-life through technology and the Internet of Things.
Eric Schmidt, the newly installed chairman of Alphabet, has written an article for the BBC about how AI technology is just starting and how Google sees its uses.
This week, Microsoft announced that it would revamp its Dynamic CRM suite to focus more on cloud and mobility capabilities. Cortana is also coming.
Apple TV is revamped, but the company has plans bigger than a simple upgrade. Can it provide the next great platform for game developers and content?
In a move to bring more Surface Pro tablets into the enterprise, Microsoft is teaming up with hardware partners Dell and HP.
How far can the US Department of Justice go in demanding customer data, especially when it's encrypted or stored overseas?
Google has expanded its health search feature to include about 900 different medical conditions.
The latest buzz about the revamped Apple TV is a new universal search feature and improved remote control. Apple is expected to offer details about the revised set-top box Sept. 9.
With Microsoft, Google, and Mozilla turning against the RC4 cryptographic suite, the standard will likely die in 2016.
Whether it's a cynical move or not, Apple's upcoming release of iOS 9 can give users the ability to block ads on a mobile browser. This is a serious concern for online advertisers.
Google's Chrome browser will no longer support Flash-based ads starting Sept. 1. This follows several months of problems with Adobe's Flash platform.
A business milestone or a sign of the apocalypse? Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg says the social media site had one billion users in one day.
Digital assistants are all the rage and Facebook's M is the latest in a market that includes Siri, Cortana, Google Now, and Amazon's Echo. However, Facebook is teaming up AI and humans.
VMware's Fusion 8 and Fusion 8 Pro virtualization software versions support both Microsoft's Windows 10 and Apple's upcoming El Capitan version of Mac OS X.
The fallout from the Ashley Madison breach continues, offering some surprise lessons for CIOs and IT professionals on how to respond to a very public event.
Microsoft's Cortana digital assistant is now available for Android smartphones through a beta release.
As people sift through the Ashley Madison data dump, this massive breach should spark a conversation among IT and security professionals, especially ones who work in the government and cyber-security fields.
A new report from PageFair and Adobe finds ad blocking software will cost websites more than $21 billion in lost revenue this year, and that's only expected to increase in 2016.
Gartner's annual Hype Cycle is out, and IoT and autonomous cars are in this year. Big data, however, is losing some of its luster.
By the end of the summer, Netflix will close its last data center and move its entire streaming service to the cloud with help from AWS. It's a lesson for companies large and small.
A Gartner subsidiary, Software Advice, has developed a rating system that shows the popularity of CRM applications. See which services made the Top 10.
Apple has officially released Boot Camp 6, which allows Mac users to run Windows 10 on their machines within a virtual environment.
Facing pressure and competition in the global smartphone market, Lenovo and HTC each announced layoffs as part of different restructuring plans.
A strong US dollar means that hardware and software pricing are going to rise. Garter is advising CIOs to be prepared for some sticker shock.