Overview of the VP9 video codec

VP9 isn’t as widespread as H.264, but it performs equally well, even better in some circumstances. Most media players are incorporating H.265 (HEVC) hardware decode already, though. “That new television that you’ve been dreaming of buying – with that fancy marketing term, UHD (ultra high-definition). In numbers, this is 3840×2160 pixels at 60 fps. Let’s assume it’s HDR, so 10 bits/component, at YUV-4:2:0 chroma subsampling. … Continue reading Overview of the VP9 video codec

Admiral to price car insurance based on Facebook posts

If only there was some huge database filled with every detail of a person’s life, their constant locations, selfies, contact lists, history of behaviour, audio recordings, purchase history, secrets and all that. Then if only that company was willing to sell their users out en masse for cents on the dollar. “The scheme is based around algorithms that have been developed by Admiral. The technology … Continue reading Admiral to price car insurance based on Facebook posts

Apple’s 2016 in review

I’m not sure what’s less surprising – that one company can’t be good at everything, or that people who are trapped by Apple’s horrendous lock-in spend an inordinate amount of time lamenting about Apple. There’s a free and open market, competition is good. “There are far too many details of bugs slipping into releases, weird design choices (the chaos of trying to use stickers in … Continue reading Apple’s 2016 in review

A Shocking Amount of E-Waste Recycling Is a Complete Sham

To nobody’s surprise, much of e-recycling is like voluntary carbon levies – a ploy to make the consumer feel better about themselves. It’s ineffective mainly because it’s cost-prohibitive or dangerous to break electronics down into their composite materials. Or alternatively, a radical concept – people could simply repair and hang onto electronic devices longer. Choose products which are known to be durable and have spare … Continue reading A Shocking Amount of E-Waste Recycling Is a Complete Sham

A deep dive into mobile app location privacy following the InMobi settlement

App location tracking of user, without requesting for location information. Works on Android <= 5.x and iOS <= 8.x versions. “In addition, applications can still access the BSSID of the currently connected WiFi network without obtaining the location permission. Although this provides a more limited opportunity for surreptitious location tracking since the consumer’s device must be connected to a WiFi network, consumers regularly connect their … Continue reading A deep dive into mobile app location privacy following the InMobi settlement

The Age of Apple is Over

Apple isn’t going anywhere soon, but they haven’t been innovation leaders for many years. They have been copying symptoms of past great ideas, without understanding the why. The string of unexciting products, to penny pinching even on high-end products reek of a chain prioritized by bean-counting, to nobody’s surprise. But it’s not entirely their fault, the age of hardware is waning, the real fields of … Continue reading The Age of Apple is Over