31 Years of the Digest ... founded August 21, 1981
The Telecom Digest for January 2, 2013
====== 31 years of TELECOM Digest -- Founded August 21, 1981 ======
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Date: Sun, 30 Dec 2012 17:53:54 -0500 From: Monty Solomon <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: How AT&T and Verizon Manipulate Your Smartphone Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> How AT&T and Verizon Manipulate Your Smartphone By Susan Crawford Dec 26, 2012 Bloomberg The two kinds of Internet-access carriers, wired and wireless, have found they can operate without competing with each other. The cable industry and AT&T- Verizon have divided up the world much as Comcast and Time Warner did; only instead of, "You take Philadelphia, I'll take Minneapolis," it's, "You take wired, I'll take wireless." At the end of 2011, the two industries even agreed to market each other's services. Comcast and Time Warner Cable will bundle Verizon Wireless services with their own, and by 2015 the cable companies will have the option of selling mobile services under their own brands. The deal came about because a cable industry joint venture primarily owned by Comcast, with Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks (another cable distributor) participating, controlled a substantial portion of public airwaves that the companies had licensed during a Federal Communications Commission auction in 2006; Verizon Wireless gets that spectrum for $3.6 billion in exchange for intertwining its business with that of Comcast and Time Warner. This made eminent sense. In most of the areas served by Comcast and Time Warner, Verizon's FiOS -- the only real competition for wired Internet access -- isn't present. (Comcast and FiOS overlap in only 15 percent of Comcast's physical market; Time Warner and FiOS overlap in just 11 percent of Time Warner's.) By cooperating, Verizon Wireless implicitly promises not to spread FiOS service any farther, and Comcast and Time Warner promise to stay out of the wireless business. Meanwhile, much-smaller Cablevision will have to keep competing: It overlaps with Verizon FiOS installations in 40 percent of its market. ... http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-12-26/how-at-t-and-verizon-manipulate-your-smartphone.html
Date: Mon, 31 Dec 2012 23:24:14 -0500 From: Julian Thomas <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Re: Happy New Year Message-ID: <8EFAF74A-12F6-422B-BFDE-AB90BD90B4AD@jt-mj.net> On 31Dec 2012, at 7:00 PM, Telecom Digest Moderator <email@example.com> wrote: > Well, enough of that: I hope you and yours have all the best of 2013. And the same to you! -- Sent from my new iMac Julian Thomas firstname.lastname@example.org http://jt-mj.net
Date: Mon, 31 Dec 2012 22:47:44 -0500 From: tlvp <mPiOsUcB.EtLlLvEp@att.net> To: email@example.com. Subject: Re: Verizon Announces End of 900 Number Billing Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> On 31 Dec 2012 03:28:01 -0000, John Levine wrote: > It's more than that, Verizon owns what's left of MCI ... Does what's left of MCI still include any MCI Mail, aka mcimail.com? Just curious, is all, as a former MCI Mail customer :-) . Cheers, -- tlvp -- Avant de repondre, jeter la poubelle, SVP.
Date: Tue, 1 Jan 2013 12:02:01 -0500 From: Monty Solomon <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Outmaneuvered at Their Own Game, Antivirus Makers Struggle to Adapt Message-ID: <email@example.com> Outmaneuvered at Their Own Game, Antivirus Makers Struggle to Adapt By NICOLE PERLROTH December 31, 2012 SAN FRANCISCO - The antivirus industry has a dirty little secret: its products are often not very good at stopping viruses. Consumers and businesses spend billions of dollars every year on antivirus software. But these programs rarely, if ever, block freshly minted computer viruses, experts say, because the virus creators move too quickly. That is prompting start-ups and other companies to get creative about new approaches to computer security. "The bad guys are always trying to be a step ahead," said Matthew D. Howard, a venture capitalist at Norwest Venture Partners who previously set up the security strategy at Cisco Systems. "And it doesn't take a lot to be a step ahead." Computer viruses used to be the domain of digital mischief makers. But in the mid-2000s, when criminals discovered that malicious software could be profitable, the number of new viruses began to grow exponentially. In 2000, there were fewer than a million new strains of malware, most of them the work of amateurs. By 2010, there were 49 million new strains, according to AV-Test, a German research institute that tests antivirus products. The antivirus industry has grown as well, but experts say it is falling behind. By the time its products are able to block new viruses, it is often too late. The bad guys have already had their fun, siphoning out a company's trade secrets, erasing data or emptying a consumer's bank account. A new study by Imperva, a data security firm in Redwood City, Calif., and students from the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology is the latest confirmation of this. Amichai Shulman, Imperva's chief technology officer, and a group of researchers collected and analyzed 82 new computer viruses and put them up against more than 40 antivirus products, made by top companies like Microsoft, Symantec, McAfee and Kaspersky Lab. They found that the initial detection rate was less than 5 percent. ... http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/01/technology/antivirus-makers-work-on-software-to-catch-malware-more-effectively.html ***** Moderator's Note ***** Imperva? Not only is that silly, it's short-sighted: stupid lead-them-by-the-nose trade names make customers think that the company is all hat and no cattle. Bill Horne Moderator
Date: Sun, 30 Dec 2012 19:31:29 -0500 From: Monty Solomon <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: Disruptions: The Real Hazards of E-Devices on Planes Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> Disruptions: The Real Hazards of E-Devices on Planes By NICK BILTON DECEMBER 30, 2012 Over the last year, flying with phones and other devices has become increasingly dangerous. In September, a passenger was arrested in El Paso after refusing to turn off his cellphone as the plane was landing. In October, a man in Chicago was arrested because he used his iPad during takeoff. In November, half a dozen police cars raced across the tarmac at La Guardia Airport in New York, surrounding a plane as if there were a terrorist on board. They arrested a 30-year-old man who had also refused to turn off his phone while on the runway. Who is to blame in these episodes? You can't solely pin it on the passengers. Some of the responsibility falls on the Federal Aviation Administration, for continuing to uphold a rule that is based on the unproven idea that a phone or tablet can interfere with the operation of a plane. These conflicts have been going on for several years. In 2010, a 68-year-old man punched a teenager because he didn't turn off his phone. Lt. Kent Lipple of the Boise Police Department in Idaho, who arrested the puncher, said the man "felt he was protecting the entire plane and its occupants." And let's not forget Alec Baldwin, who was kicked off an American Airlines plane in 2011 for playing Words With Friends online while parked at the gate. Dealing with the F.A.A. on this topic is like arguing with a stubborn teenager. The agency has no proof that electronic devices can harm a plane's avionics, but it still perpetuates such claims, spreading irrational fear among millions of fliers. ... http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/12/30/f-a-a-rules-make-electronic-devices-on-planes-dangerous/
Date: Tue, 1 Jan 2013 13:01:01 -0500 From: Bill Horne <bill@horneQRM.net> To: email@example.com. Subject: Re: Disruptions: The Real Hazards of E-Devices on Planes Message-ID: <20130101180101.GA839@telecom.csail.mit.edu> On Sun, Dec 30, 2012 at 07:31:29PM -0500, Monty Solomon wrote: > In September, a passenger was arrested in El Paso after refusing to > turn off his cellphone as the plane was landing. In October, a man in > Chicago was arrested because he used his iPad during takeoff. In > November, half a dozen police cars raced across the tarmac at La > Guardia Airport in New York, surrounding a plane as if there were a > terrorist on board. They arrested a 30-year-old man who had also > refused to turn off his phone while on the runway. My feeling toward airline passengers who want to pretend that they are radio-frequency engineers is probably shared by most other travellers. I think these spoiled brats deserve to be punched in the face. I don't CARE if there's only a 0.001% chance of a dumbphone or a laptop or a notepad or a pda interfering with an aircraft's radios. All I know for a fact is that the aircraft navigation systems which are in use right /now/ to guide airplanes into landings during inclement weather were designed over fifty years ago, and that it is IMPOSSIBLE to to overcome the limits of the technology available back then with integrated circuits or Chebyshev filters or any other device available now. This is one of those things that has to be decided by the worst possible outcome, not the best. We must, in conscience, subject some airline passengers to a minor inconvenience because our society is built on the idea that it should be run for the benefit of the majority, not for the hubris of a few arrogant fools: the worst outcome is dead, burnt bodies lying on the ground amid the wreckage of the houses and the lives that could be ruined by one person's selfishness. Bill -- Bill Horne (Remove QRM from my address to write to me directly)
Date: Sun, 30 Dec 2012 18:41:23 -0500 From: Monty Solomon <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: This Is Your Life, as Recalled by an App Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> This Is Your Life, as Recalled by an App By JENNA WORTHAM December 15, 2012 THE holiday season of 2011 was a hive of activity for me. One week in early December, I managed to attend a party at the Bowery Ballroom, a movie premiere and a Justin Bieber-themed dinner event. A few days later, in a single afternoon, I saw the movie "Young Adult," bought animal-shaped glassware as Christmas gifts and shared dishes of handmade pasta with a few friends from college. And three nights after that, I attended a concert at a local music venue with a friend from Australia, then woke up the next morning and hopped on an Amtrak train to Virginia for Christmas. I know all of this not because my memory is superhuman, or because I keep a detailed journal. My gift of meticulous recollection comes courtesy of several apps I've signed up for, including Timehop and Rewind.me. They tap into my social media history and send daily reminders of my past postings, from pictures uploaded to Instagram, the photo-sharing application, to messages on Facebook and Twitter. At a basic level, these services serve as a cognitive crutch, excavating details about the past that I might not otherwise remember. They offer historical insight into a digital world that is in many ways ephemeral - full of constantly refreshing newsfeeds. While social networks tell their users what is happening right now, these newer services document life of a year or more ago. They rely on a proliferation of personal data scattered around the Web and easily retrieved with the help of clever engineering and software algorithms. And they offer a rare backward glance, an anthropological perspective on our own online behavior. For example, I've noticed that last year, I was posting many photographs and disclosing personal details of my life on social networks, but that these days, I've shifted into a cooler, less intimate mode. ... http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/16/technology/new-apps-recall-the-details-of-your-online-past.html
Date: Tue, 1 Jan 2013 16:50:44 -0500 From: tlvp <mPiOsUcB.EtLlLvEp@att.net> To: email@example.com. Subject: Re: Happy New Year Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> On Tue, 1 Jan 2013 00:00:19 -0000, Telecom Digest Moderator wrote: > 3. If we can put a man on the moon, why can't we make a cellular > battery that lasts for the whole day? FWIW, the original battery in my vzw-issued Samsung SCH-a930 (vintage 2006?) still lasts a week on a charge, if I get or make few calls or SMSes. Cheers, -- tlvp -- Avant de repondre, jeter la poubelle, SVP.
Date: Sun, 30 Dec 2012 19:41:17 -0500 From: Monty Solomon <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Are Unlocked Devices The Future Of American Mobile? Message-ID: <email@example.com> Are Unlocked Devices The Future Of American Mobile? Joe Levin December 26, 2012 Buying a smartphone in this country these days is a risky proposition. The majority of Americans go into their local Verizon or AT&T store and end up signing a two-year contract in order to get an expensive phone at a subsidized rate. It doesn't matter how much research you do or how much a device is hyped, it's still possible to end up with a dud. On the other hand you could get a phone that does everything you want, but then gets lost in the upgrade shuffle because your carrier decided they needed more time to "test" it before the new version of Android was ready for the masses. But I've got some good news for you?Things are changing. Changing slowly, but changing nonetheless. If the launch of Google's Nexus 4 has taught us anything it's that there is a bigger market for unlocked unsubsidized smartphones than originally thought. Sure, you could point to the ridiculous specs and a bargain basement price tag. Or maybe the fact that Nexus devices get their updates directly from Google, on time and without carrier approval. But I think there is more to it than that. Freedom! ... http://androidheadlines.com/2012/12/are-unlocked-devices-the-future-of-american-mobile.html
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