IBM Releases Homomorphic Encryption Toolkit for iOS, macOS

· Andrew Orr · Link

Generic image of data

IBM has released a toolkit for iOS and macOS to help developers to easily add homomorphic encryption into their programs.

While the technology holds great potential, it does require a significant shift in the security paradigm. Typically, inside the business logic of an application, data remains decrypted, Bergamaschi explained. But with the implementation of FHE, that’s no longer the case — meaning some functions and operations will change.

In other words, “There will be a need to rewrite parts of the business logic,” Bergamaschi said. “But the security that you gain with that, where the data is encrypted all the time, is very high.”

If you haven’t added homomorphic encryption to your technology watch list, be sure to do so. As I wrote in the past, this type of encryption lets a company perform computations on data while still keeping that data encrypted.

UK Government Releases NHS COVID Contracts With Private Companies

· Andrew Orr · Link

United Kingdom flag

Faced with pressure, the UK government has released its contracts with Amazon, Google, Microsoft, Faculty, Palantir, and others.

The contracts show that companies involved in the NHS datastore project, including Faculty and Palantir, were originally granted intellectual property rights (including the creation of databases), and were allowed to train their models and profit off their unprecedented access to NHS data.

The REAL reason why they wanted to avoid Apple and Google’s privacy solution.

Apple Streams ‘Just Mercy’ Film Starring Michael B. Jordan and Jamie Foxx

· Andrew Orr · Link

Still from Just Mercy, a film starring Michael B. Jordan and Jamie Foxx.

Apple is making “Just Mercy” available to stream free for customers. Based on a true story, it stars Michael B. Jordan and Jamie Foxx.

The Warner Bros. film is based on a true-story of a young lawyer who decides to use his Harvard law degree in Alabama to fight against racial inequality in the context of those wrongly convicted of crimes (free streaming for “Just Mercy” may just be in the US).

A good film recommendation for the weekend.

Alexis Ohanian Quits Reddit Board, Asks For Seat to be Filled by Black Candidate

· Charlotte Henry · Link

Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian has resigned from the company’s board and asked for his seat to be filled by black candidate. In a blog post, Mr. Ohanian, who is married to tennis superstar Serena Williams, also said he would use any future gains from Reddit stock to serve black community and racial equality organizations.

I’m writing this as a father who needs to be able to answer his black daughter when she asks: “What did you do?” I have resigned as a member of the reddit board, I have urged them to fill my seat with a black candidate, and I will use future gains on my Reddit stock to serve the black community, chiefly to curb racial hate, and I’m starting with a pledge of $1M to Colin Kaepernick’s Know Your Rights Camp. I believe resignation can actually be an act of leadership from people in power right now. To everyone fighting to fix our broken nation: do not stop.

‘CamTag’ is a set of Reusable Privacy Camera Stickers

· Andrew Orr · Cool Stuff Found

CamTag is a set of reusable privacy camera stickers for your devices. These stickers are a way to make sure that you aren’t being spied upon by malicious third parties. These stickers are glue-free so you can reuse them on your iPhone, iPad, and Macs. They come in different designs and you can customize it with your own design or branding. It’s a Kickstarter campaign and it’s been fully funded. Estimated delivery is October 2020. Pledge US$9 or more to get the first reward tier, which gives you 25 privacy stickers in 5 sizes.

‘CamTag’ is a set of Reusable Privacy Camera Stickers

How Apple Learned Humans Beat Automation

· Charlotte Henry · Link

Factory robot

The Information has a great deep dive into how Apple learned that humans can actually surpass automation. There is also a good write-up over on AppleInsider.

Since Apple redesigns its major hardware in at least some way every year, it would also have to redesign the automated factory lines. Compared to that, training workers on new designs is vastly easier and quicker. Plus, one reason both Foxconn and Apple were interested in automation is that as well as being dependent on workers, that dependency fluctuates greatly. Foxconn was having problems recruiting enough staff for the peak periods just after, say, an iPhone launch. Automation would theoretically reduce that problem, but Apple already has a way of removing it. When it needs to, Apple is currently able to switch production to other companies. If there’s a problem or if more production is needed, it has alternative sources it can leverage.

Apple Launches Open Source Password Project

· Andrew Orr · Product News

Apple key icon

Apple recently created an open source project to help developers of password managers collaborate with websites to create strong passwords for users.

New Series ‘Dear’ Lands on Apple TV+

· Charlotte Henry · Cool Stuff Found

Along with the third episode of Central Park, a new series landed on Apple TV+ on Friday.  Dear tells stories the tale of ten superstars and some of the people whose lives they have touched. Those profiled include Spike Lee, Lin Manuel Miranda, and Oprah Winfrey. All episodes Of Dear are available to stream now with an Apple TV+ subsription.

New Series ‘Dear’ Lands on Apple TV+

[Update] These Apple Stores Are Now Open

· Charlotte Henry · Deep Dive

Photo of an apple retail store

More and more Apple Stores in the U.S and around the world are opening in the coming days following their COVID-19 enforced closures.

New Notchless iPhone 13 Mockup Emerges

· Charlotte Henry · Cool Stuff Found

A new 3D-printed iPhone mockup has emerged, showing the notch may be nixed, It came from Japanese site Macotakara. It also has a USB-C port. Cult of Mac has a good rundown in English and notes that if such a design does become reality, we may not see it until 2021 i.e. it’s the iPhone 13.

New Notchless iPhone 13 Mockup Emerges

Kids in U.S. UK, and Spain Spending Nearly as Much Time on TikTok as YouTube

· Charlotte Henry · Link

Children in the U.S., UK, and Spain are now spending nearly as much time watching TikTok videos as they are watching clips on YouTube. That’s according to new data from Qustodio, reported on by Techcrunch.

Kids ages 4 to 15 now spend an average of 85 minutes per day watching YouTube videos, compared with 80 minutes per day spent on TikTok. The latter app also drove growth in kids’ social app use by 100% in 2019 and 200% in 2020, the report found. The data in the annual report by digital safety app maker Qustodio was provided by 60,000 families with children ages 4 to 14 in the U.S., U.K., and Spain, so it’s data isn’t representative of global trends. The research encompasses children’s online habits from February 2019 to April 2020, takes into account the COVID-19 crisis, and specifically focused on four main categories of mobile applications: online video, social media, video games, and education.

Elon Musk: 'Time to Break up Amazon'

· Charlotte Henry · Link

Elon Musk doesn’t like monopolies. He also appears to not like Amazon, if his latest tweets, reported on by Bloomberg News, are anything to go by. They included his declaration that it’s “time to break up Amazon.”

“Monopolies are wrong,” Musk tweeted while tagging Bezos, the world’s wealthiest man. Musk’s post came in response to a tweet from a writer who said his book titled “Unreported Truths About COVID-19 and The Lockdown” was being removed from Amazon’s Kindle publishing division for violating unspecified guidelines. With more than 35 million followers, Musk is a prolific tweeter. He has been criticized in the past for his posts on various subjects ranging from the coronavirus outbreak to Tesla stock. Amazon didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.