Why Was Apple Late To The PRISM Party?
If there’s one striking thing about those PRISM slides, other than their hideous aesthetics, it’s that Apple’s allocated yellow oval, instead of a date, has the words “(added Oct 2012)” underneath it. That difference is most striking when you consider the fact that Apple competitor Microsoft cooperated with the government a full five years earlier. The company, which denies ever having heard of PRISM, released its FISA request numbers today, starting on December 1st, 2012, through this May 2013. Though it’s plausible that the government would not have disclosed the name of the program, the NYT confirmed Apple’s participation in a government surveillance network designed to make data collection more efficient for the NSA — whatever that entails, like “a broad sweep for intelligence, like logs of certain search terms.” From Claire Cain Miller’s article: While handing over data in response to a legitimate FISA request is a legal requirement, making it easier for the government ...
PalTalk: It Was “Flattering” To Be Included In The PRISM Slidedeck
The eyesore of a PowerPoint deck that contractor Edward Snowden had leaked had globally recognized names: Microsoft. Google. Yahoo. Facebook. Apple. AOL. Skype. YouTube. The NSA had allegedly collaborated with all of these Internet giants to request and access data on foreign users. But then there was also PalTalk. WTF? Even Stephen Colbert ribbed them last week. “You heard right. They’re monitoring PalTalk. Folks. You know what that means. We are that close to learning what PalTalk is….” PalTalk, a profitable group video chat site that’s been around for more than a decade and has about 5.5 million monthly uniques, officially says it had no idea what PRISM was until the slidedeck was published — just like every other tech company. And then added — like every other tech company — that it doesn’t let any government agency have direct access to its servers, but that it legally complies with court orders. “First of all, it was flattering to be included in that list of the ...
Apple's Flashlight Is Why We Can't Fund Nice Dumb Things
Flashlight apps are a testament to the power and simplicity of modern technology. Power outage because of a hurricane? There's an app for that. Need to stealthily kill a mosquito without waking up your partner? There's an app for that, too. Actually, there are more than 1,000 in the App Store alone, many with 5-star ratings, because flashlight apps, which turn the flash of your iPhone camera into a literal flashlight, are awesome. Flashlight apps make you feel like your phone is more Swiss Army knife than Twitter receptacle.
Chinese Microblog Site Tencent Weibo Will Be Baked Into iOS 7, Just Like Facebook And Twitter
It's been a big news day for all things Apple, and a lot of the buzz has been around the company's renewed focus on American manufacturing. But one feature announced today in Apple's new iOS 7 mobile operating system shows that Apple's dedication to China -- and specifically, the market of Chinese iPhone users which is growing at a "mind-boggling" rate -- is only getting stronger.
Apple Updates Siri With Twitter, Wikipedia, Bing Integration, New Commands And Male And Female Voices
At its WWDC keynote today, Apple announced an update to Siri that brings a number of new features to Apple's voice-driven personal assistant for iOS. Not only is Siri getting a number of new high-quality male and female voices and support for multiple languages (English, German and French, for example), but it's also getting quite a bit smarter. In this version, Apple has integrated Twitter, Wikipedia and search results from Bing, so it can now, for example, read you back Wikipedia entries for some searches.