Weekly digest - 2019.17

Avengers Engame

This week, Marvel released the final chapter of the Avengers. This is a culmination of the story that was 11 years in a making and took 22 movies to tell. During that time those movies evolved from small experiment into pop-culture phenomenon. That being said, the directors, Russo brothers, had almost impossible task to finish all the stories,  meet fans' expectations and lay the foundation for the Phase 4.  I have to admit, I was worried whether they would be able to do it, but they did it. After watching it, I can say with certainty that this is the perfect culmination of the Marvel's Phase 1-3 movies. After leaving the cinema I was fulfilled. Russo brothers not only close the storyline, but they also incorporated so many references to previous movies and comics, that is was overwhelming.  Every nerd will have something to talk about for weeks.

This is not the perfect movie, but  it  gives us closure, and that was what I wanted from this movie.

Samsung Galaxy Fold

Last week I was writing about broken review units. This week we got first reviews and even a teardown. As I said last week, this phone is still a prototype with many small issues. They are not anything major, but it looks like they might be irritating in long run. I hope Samsung is taking notes and the next model will be true folded phone.

Another AirPods in 2019?

There are rumors that Apple will release a brand new AirPods later this year. New model is supposed to have a noise-canceling feature as well as new form-factor. Those rumors are really interesting especially after Apple's AirPods update in last March. Although, in March we go merely a hardware refresh, when all previous rumors hinted new colors, materials and features including noise-cancellation, so maybe we will get a brand new AirPods after all.

Weekly digest - 2019.16

As I mentioned last week, we had Star Wars Celebration. I've already covered Rise of Skywalker and  Jedi Fallen Order. Now, it's time to catch up with other news.

The Mandalorian

This is the first, beside Star Wars TV Special, live action Star Wars TV series, so I've been really excited for this panel. Unfortunately we have not learnt many details, but what have been leaked looks promising. It looks like we will get dark, greedy world that I love in Rogue One. And if Dave Filoni created the story on level of Rebels, we will get Netflix's quality show. Can't wait to 15th of November, when series will debut on Diney+.

Star Wars The Clone Wars

This panel haven't brought any surprises as most of the story have been already told one way or another, but at least we've got official trailer. Unfortunately we still don't know when it will be released.

Notre Dame

On Monday the Notre Dame cathedral burned down. Normally I would not cover such tragedy, but Ubisoft released Assassins Creed Unity, which featured the detailed recreation of the cathedral, for free. I thought it was cheap and low marketing action, but later on Ubisoft announced that they will give $500K for restoration process. Maybe it was a PR stunt, but at least those money will be used to something good.

Playstation 5

This week we got couple of details about next generation of Sony's console. Here is what we learnt, so far:

  • It will not be released in 2019,
  • 8-core CPU  based on AMD’s 3rd gen Ryzen (7nm Zen 2),
  • GPU based on AMD’s Radeon Navi with support for  8K resolution and ray-tracing,
  • Custom AMD chip for 3D audio,
  • SSD storage,
  • Backward compatibility with PS4 games,
  • Physical drive, probably Blue-ray, but the type of the drive has not been confirmed.

So far it looks promising. The only thing that is a mystery now is pricing, but I think we will find it out next year.

Broken Samsung Galaxy Fold

Samsung has started shipping review units and multiple phones already broke after couple days of usage. I knew this device will be a prototype to see how this technology behaves and how people use foldable phones, but I didn't expect to see such problems before the premiere. Hopefully Samsung finds out the root of the problem and the next generation will not have such issues.

Crew Dragon anomaly

On Sunday SpaceX was doing static fire test of the Crew Dragon capsule, but something went wrong and vehicle exploded. At the moment we don't know why it happened and how is it going to affect the manned mission, originally planned for this July.

Weekly digest - 2019.08

This week Samsung held its UNPACKED 2019 event, during which they presented new phones. Lets start with phones we have already anticipated, Galaxy S10 and S10+. The first model starts at $899 and have following specification:

  • 6.1-inch (3040x1440) AMOLED display,
  • 8nm 64-bit 2.73GHz Octa-Core Processor,
  • 8GB RAM,
  • 128GB or 512GB of storage,
  • 10MP selfie camera,
  • Triple rear camera with 12MP Telephoto and wide-angle lenses, as well as 16MP ultra wide lens,
  • Fingerprint reader built into the screen,
  • 3.5mm Headphone jack 😉,
  • 3400mAh battery with wireless charging.

The bigger model S10+ starts at $999 with following specification:

  • 6.4-inch (3040x1440) AMOLED display,
  • 8nm 64-bit 2.73GHz Octa-Core Processor,
  • 8GB RAM with 128GB of storage, 8GB RAM with 512GB of storage, 12GB RAM with 1TB of storage,
  • Dual front camera with 10MP selfie camera and 8MP depth camera,
  • Triple rear camera with 12MP Telephoto and wide-angle lenses, as well as 16MP ultra wide lens,
  • Fingerprint reader built into the screen,
  • 3.5mm Headphone jack,
  • 4100mAh battery with wireless charging.

And that's not all. Samsung following steps of Apple, introduced the "budget" version of the phone. Galaxy S10e starts at $749 with following specification:

  • 5.8-inch (2280x1080) AMOLED display,
  • 8nm 64-bit 2.73GHz Octa-Core Processor,
  • 6GB RAM with 128GB of storage and 8GB RAM with 256 of storage
  • 10MP selfie camera,
  • Dual rear camera with 12MP Telephoto and 16MP ultra wide lenses,
  • Fingerprint reader built into the screen,
  • 3.5mm Headphone jack,
  • 3100mAh battery with wireless charging.

The biggest surprised was introduced at the end. The Samsung Galaxy Fold is the first Samsung's foldable device. Here is the specification:

  • Main screen is 7.3-inch Dynamic AMOLED display (4.2:3),
  • Cover screen is 4.6-inch Super AMOLED Display (4.2:3)
  • Has 3 cameras:
    • Cover camera 10MP selfie,
    • Dual front camera with with 10MP selfie and 8MP depth cameras,
    • Triple rear camera with 12MP Telephoto and wide-angle lenses and 16MP ultra wide lens,
  • 7nm 64-bit Octa-Core Processor,
  • 12GB RAM with 512GB internal storage,
  • 4380mAh battery with wireless charging.

Samsung's Galaxy Fold foldable starts at $1,980 and launches on April 2. I'm really interesting to see how this foldable device will behave in real life and can't wait to try it myself.

Now, moving on to other news. Earlier this week, we got rumors that Apple is planing to release new 16-inch MacBook Pro. All we know so far is that new mac is supposed to have a brand new design. This is interesting rumor, maybe overheating and hinge issues force Apple to change the design. I will follow this topic with great interest.

Speaking of Apple, there is another rumor saying that Apple will combine macOS and iOS by 2021. We already know that we will be able to run iOS apps on mac using project Marzipan, which should be released this year. But the more interesting part is that we have a date when this transition should be in effect, which means that around 2021 we will get macs with ARM processors.

Thats all for this week. Last but not least, here is the list of interesting things.

Don’t get clever with login forms

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Linux Reverse Engineering CTFs for Beginners

The shady economics of ‘buy one, get one free’ deals

Image credits: Samsung.

Weekly digest - 2019.07

This week we got some information about Apple event that is rumored for March. During this event we should see new iPads mini, which I've already covered two weeks ago, long awaited AirPower and AirPods 2 with new color options. Unfortunately, we don't know when we will be able to buy new AirPods, one rumor says it will be available this spring, and another says that we have to wait till fall. I cannot wait for new AirPods, especially black matte ones, and I hope we will get them in the first half of this year.

On the other side of the barricade, Samsung released a new tablet, Samsung Galaxy Tab S5e. Starting at $399 device has following specification:

  • 10.5inch Super AMOLED (2560x1600) display,
  • Qualcomm SDM 670 (Dual 2.0GHz + Hexa 1.7GHz) processor,
  • 4GB or 6GB of RAM,
  • 64GB or 128GB of internal storage,
  • SD card slot supporting cards up to 512GB
  • Front (8-megapixel) and back (13-megapixel) cameras,
  • Up to 14.5h of battery life.

Right now, the market of the tablets is dominated by iPads. The root cause of that situation was lack of decent Android devices. With this new Galaxy Tab, Samsung finally has something that might be recommended as an alternative to the iPad.

From the other news, JPMorgan is launching its own cryptocurrency. Yeah, another cryptocurency to the collection. This time, one JPM Coin will be equivalent of one dollar, and will be used to perform real-time transfers of substantial amount of money, which right now might take even days. I'm not a big fan of another cryptocurency, but I'm glad to see that big and respected bank is going to use blockchain to transfer money.

That's it for this week, if you want more, here is the list of interesting things.

In 2018 I made $23k in revenue from my podcast

10 Signs You Will Suck at Programming

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If San Francisco Is So Great, Why Is Everyone I Love Leaving?

Weekly digest - 2019.02

It's a tradition that during second week of January, most of business related to the consumer technologies gather in Las Vegas for the CES. Here is the list of more interesting news.

  1. Lets start with surprising announcement from Samsung and Sony that their new Smart TVs will support AirPlay. To clarify the confusion Apple announced that leading TV manufacturers will be integrating AirPlay 2 into their TVs.
  2. Chinese EV startup - Byton - has shown their 49-inch screen. It doesn't sound special, except this screen is inside the car. I must admit, it looks gorgeous; however, I'm wondering how useful it is as well as how much it distracts a driver.
  3. Speaking of screens, LG has presented first rollable OLED TV. You may ask why one would need to roll their TV screen. Beside the ability to hide the screen when requested, I don't have any other answer. This is not important when we look at this from technology point of view. If we can roll an OLED screen, that means we are really close from getting foldable OLED phones and tables.
  4. HTC announced Vive Pro Eye. This is virtual reality headset with eye tracking built-in. Eye tracking allows developers to increase the quality of the games/applications. This can be achieved by using high quality assets for objects that are in front of player's eyes and lower quality assets for elements that are outside eye's focus area. Beside the visual aspect, eye tracking will add some new capabilities to the headset e.g. hands-free interactions. The price is still unknown, but the headset should be available in the second quarter of 2019.
  5. Google assistance is getting momentum. It will be integrated with many new products including TVs, phones, speakers and even shower. I wish Siri had those capabilities.
  6. Yubico presented the first Lightning security key for iPhones. Securing keys are now a standard for computers, but I have never heard of such solution for a phone. So now, if one needs to protect their phone even more, they have a solution that is even approved by Apple.
  7. AMD announced the Radeon VII. This is first 7nm GPU and promises significant performance improvements over current AMD's flagship card - Radeon RX Vega 64. Also, with this card, AMD wants to compete with Nvidia's RTX 2080.
  8. A lot of cars have been announced, including flying car, walking car as well as smart vehicles. I like to see cool technologies, but I hope that CES don't become an auto show.

Now, let's move on to other news. There was a lot of rumors regarding Apple. First we got a first "alleged" mocks of the new iPhone. We cannot see the from of the phone, but it's remored that Apple wants to move all the sensors behind OLED screen and remove the notch. I really like this idea, I got used to the notch, but still it is hideous. If those rumors are true, new iPhone might looks like Samsung Galaxy S10.
As we are on the topic of leaked photos, new iPad mini has emerged basically from grave. I thought the mini series is dead, but it looks like Apple still is considering small form factor. The future will tell who was right.

Also this week, we got a first real result of buying GitHub by Microsoft. Users can create unlimited private repositories for free. This is the feature I have been waiting for a long time. I know I can create private repositories for free on Bitbucket or GitLab, but anyone is on GitHub and if I want to start something privately and later on share this with others now, I can do this without switching between different repositories.

This week there is no list of interesting things. I suggest to browse the YouTube or your tech site of choice and check what else has been announced during CES.