The FBI Going Dark Isn’t the Precedent, It’s the Surveillance State that’s New

7:25 PM, Mar. 8th, 2016 · · Columns and Opinions

Surveillance during the Civil War

FBI Director James Comey has warned that encryption threatens to take us to a place where his organization and U.S. surveillance organizations are "going dark." Bryan Chaffin was recently reminded that in the context of history, the ability to surveil everything is a new development, and that we should keep claims from the FBI and others in context.

FCC Slaps Verizon’s Wrist for Pooping on Customer Privacy

6:22 PM, Mar. 7th, 2016 · · Columns and Opinions

Trust being carried to the trash

The Federal Trade Commission fined Verizon US$1.35 million for an egregious breach of customer privacy and an even worse breach of trust. Bryan Chaffin argues that such a fine isn't even a slap on the wrist, and it shows that the FCC's fangs need to grow to keep pace with the ever-larger size of the mega-corporations it theoretically regulates.

The iPhone’s Technology is Indistinguishable from Magic - That’s Now a Problem

3:40 PM, Mar. 4th, 2016 · · Columns and Opinions

The magical iPhone

Apple's iPhone is incredibly easy to use. So much so that its operation is indistinguishable from magic. Starting with extremely sophisticated silicon and working its way up through layers of abstraction, encryption technology and security and privacy measures in iOS, it is so complicated that few outside Apple understand its working principles.  That's turning into a big problem for governments.

Fiat Chrysler CEO Thinks Legacy Car Makers Should Build the Apple Car

7:11 PM, Mar. 3rd, 2016 · · Columns and Opinions

Apple Car

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne thinks that Apple should leave car building to the car industry. They're complex devices, after all. Plus, he has just the company for the job. Because he's an "Apple Freak" who owns one of everything Apple makes, Mr. Marchionne thinks Fiat Chrysler would be a great manufacturing partner for Apple.

Desktop Printer Ink Wars: 2016

3:50 PM, Mar. 2nd, 2016 · · Columns and Opinions

Ink Wars 2016

Dr. Mac was (understandably) excited when  two printer manufacturers — HP and Epson — each offered him a printer to test with their new ink initiatives — HP's Instant Ink and Epson's EcoTank — which were created to make the whole ink replacement thing more convenient and affordable. 

Three Old Constitutional Arguments Apply Equally Well to Apple’s iPhone and the FBI

5:31 PM, Feb. 25th, 2016 · · Columns and Opinions

If you love the constitution, the right to privacy, and America, you should support Apple against the government's push to destroy your civil liberties. Three tried and true Constitutional arguments against eroding our civil liberties apply to this case just as they have to many other civil liberty struggles of the past. John Kheit explains.