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Current Affairs Posts - Page 31

Saudi Aramco ended up having 30,000 workstations hacked

We reported that the world's largest oil producer, Saudi Aramco, was hacked with a malware attack, but details were scarce. The oil producer has now come out and given some information of the cyber attack.


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The company experienced 30,000 workstations hacked in mid-August, with the company stating that the virus "originated from external sources", and that they were still investigating. They have since cleaned up the workstations, and resumed operations for their internal network today.


Oil exploration and production operations were not affected, according to the company, as the networks they operate on are separate. Saudi Aramco's website is still down, with a message shown above.

Continue reading 'Saudi Aramco ended up having 30,000 workstations hacked' (full post)

Israeli park makes donkeys into Wi-Fi hotspots

Here's a bit of a weird one, and a sign of the changing times. A park in Israel is designed to teleport visitors back to ancient biblical times so that they can see how people of the Old Testament lived. Now, the donkeys that are used for transportation have been outfitted with Wi-Fi hotspots, something I'm pretty confident they didn't have back then.


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The device is hung from the donkey's neck like a feedbag and provides wireless Internet access so users can surf the web, update Facebook and Twitter, or send e-mails to family and friends. "You take some pictures, you want to change your picture on Facebook - you can do it," Goldberg, the park manager, said.


Peter Scherr, a visitor from New York: "It has been used as a working animal for 5000 years," he learned, reading from a Wikipedia page on his iPad. "There are more than 40 million donkeys in the world. That's a lot of donkeys!"


"I don't miss any news," Scherr said. "I send pictures back to my family while I'm having fun on the donkeys."


It seems like an interesting choice for a park that is supposed to take visitors back to times before electricity. That said, the trial has been running for around a week and has been a smashing success.

The second episode of 'The Beauty Inside' goes live

The second episode to Intel and Toshiba's joint social film, The Beauty Inside, is out. The first episode tackled how the character feels waking up each day as a new person, with this new episode taking a new direction, too.



The second episode of The Beauty Inside is called "Leah", where the main character, Alex, seems to discover her for the first time in the antique store. The episode is crafted carefully, and you can see this character will be of importance in the coming episodes. But, how do you fall in love when tomorrow you wake up as another person?


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How would one tell another, that they morph into another human being, who could be female, or old, or young, within hours of meeting them? The series has four more episodes coming, each released every Thursday from now.

The Beauty Inside, a joint-venture social film from Intel and Toshiba

Intel and Toshiba have been hard at work on a social film project called 'The Beauty Inside'. It features some Hollywood talent, with Topher Grace narrating, Sundance award-winning Director, Drake Doremus, and Mary Elizabeth Winstead starring.



The first episode is above, for your viewing pleasure, and after watching it, I'm quite intrigued. The main character wakes up as a new person, every single day. Imagine that. You wake up and could be a thin, 20-something year old male, and in the morning, you're an overweight, 50-year-old woman. The changes in clothes, in body weight, aches, hair color, female/male body parts, would make your head spin.


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The social film's first episode feels like an introduction to the world, and the advertising from Intel and Toshiba is subtle. It's there, but it's not forced into your face, which is nice. I expected it to jump out at me more, and was pleasantly surprised, as you really only see the advertisement when the characters use a notebook. Another great thing about The Beauty Inside, is this is just the first episode, there's more to come, and if you want to get a chance to audition for a leading role in an upcoming episode, you might want to click here.

Continue reading 'The Beauty Inside, a joint-venture social film from Intel and Toshiba' (full post)

YouTube streamed a total of 231 million streams of the London 2012 Olympics

YouTube started preparing for the London 2012 Olympics last year, and it is probably a good thing they did. Considering the site pushed out a total of 231 million streams to the US and 64 countries in Africa and Asia.



From these 231 million streams, 72 million of them came from the IOC YouTube Channel. At the Olympics' peak, YouTube delivered more than 500,000 livestreams at the same time, this is five times the capacity of the Wembley Stadium. YouTube notes that a seven times improvement in quality based on low buffering and high frame rates contributed to the live video looking "better than ever before".


US-only stats sit with YouTube powering the online coverage at, where they delivered more than 159 million total streams. NBC's native apps saw 37% of the views from mobile devices, and more than 50% of these were in HD. The US Olympic Committee YouTube Channel shared behind the scenes video with more than 6.75 million views, and 50 YouTube Creator "Invaded" London to show the full experience through their eyes.

Continue reading 'YouTube streamed a total of 231 million streams of the London 2012 Olympics' (full post)

The Oatmeal's campaign to raise $850,000 for a Tesla museum hits $500k in under 48 hours

The Oatmeal, a popular web comic site, seems to be drawing on its success in dealing with that 9gag lawyer. In that campaign, he raised over $200,000 for charity, more than 10 times what the lawyer was demanding from him. This campaign appears to be a similar idea, using his audience to spread the message far and wide.


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And it appears to be working. In under 48 hours since the campaign went live, The Oatmeal's IndieGoGo campaign has raised more than $500,000 towards its goal of $850,000. The money is being raised to purchase the land where Nikola Tesla's laboratory, which was supposed to provide free power to the masses, was constructed.


Once the land is built, it will be cleaned up and a museum will be built on top. The Oatmeal is not actually the one behind this plan. Instead, they are just helping raise funds for the 501(c)3 charity Tesla Science Center at Wardenclyffe. The charity has received a matching grant from the state of New York of up to $850,000.


The asking price for the property is $1.6 million, so between the two they should have no issue obtaining the property and starting the clean up. Any extra beyond the goal goes to the eventual mission of building a "GODDAMN TESLA MUSEUM" on the site. More information can be found on TheOatmeal's website.

Continue reading 'The Oatmeal's campaign to raise $850,000 for a Tesla museum hits $500k in under 48 hours' (full post)

American teens prefer YouTube over iTunes, radio & CDs according to latest Nielsen survey

Times are changing, and the way American teens digest digital content, more specifically, music, is changing in strides. According to a new study from Nielsen Music 360, American teenagers are using Google's YouTube to listen to music compared to radio, iTunes or CDs.


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Radio still remains the biggest music discovery option, but when it comes to listening, YouTube is out in front. The study reveals that nearly 50% of teens have radio apps on their smartphones and that digital music has passed physical CDs in terms of perception of value.


This study from Nielsen is based on results from 3,000 online consumer surveys conducted in the US. This would be why YouTube drives so much traffic, and I personally have young nieces and nephews who use YouTube to stream music all the time. They're finally getting onto the bandwagon with me and Spotify, though. I think the 'fads' these days will change quicker, as music discovery applications such as Spotify become more well-known.

Teenager dies after 40-hour Diablo III marathon

Taiwan-based United Daily News has reported that a Taiwanese teenager collapsed and died at an Internet cafe after an insane 40-hour Diablo III marathon. The man was only 18 years old, and identified by last name only, Chuang.


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Chuang booked a private room at the Internet cafe in Tainan, southern Taiwan, at around 12pm on July 13. He proceeded to play for 40 hours straight without eating. On the morning of July 15, an attendant entered the room and found Chuang resting on the table. The attendant then woke Chuang, who stood up, took a few steps and then collapsed.


He was taken to the local hospital, and pronounced dead shortly after. Police are investigating the cause of death, with an autopsy being carried out. The report speculates that the long hours in a sedentary position created cardiovascular problems for Chuang. The people behind Diablo III, Blizzard, have come out and said that it's important that people play in moderation.

Watch the 2012 Olympics live on your iOS or Android-based device if you're in the U.S.

If you want to check out the 2012 London Olympic games, and don't fancy sitting in front of your TV, or want to take the games with you at all time, then here's your chance. Thanks to the technology improvements in mobile devices, apps, and everything in between, this year you can stream the games live to your smart device.



All you need is an iOS or Android-based device, and you can stream the entire London Olympics to your device. NBC and Adobe have announced a partnership which will see them bringing the Olympics to mobiles. There is one problem, you have to be in the United States.


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If you're based in the U.K., don't worry, the BBC has 24-hour streaming. The apps are very social, where you can share things with Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

WikiLeaks set to unleash 2.4 million Syrian e-mails

WikiLeaks are back in the news this week, with reports saying the whistle-blowing website is set to unleash 2.4 million e-mails from Syrian officials and government accounts. The e-mails would likely reveal communication between the Syrian government and Western companies, that would put them in a spot of controversy over the alleged collusion between the Syrian regime and its supposed "enemies".


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Sarah Harrison of WikiLeaks told journalists that the leak will cause embarrassment to both Syria and its opponents, with e-mails dating back to as far as August 2006, and as recent as March of this year, with some of the e-mails originating in Syria's Ministry of Presidential Affairs.


Of course, the source of the leak hasn't been confirmed, but Harrison claims that WikiLeaks is confident that they are genuine. WikiLeaks have begun posting some of these e-mails online, with the rest of them to follow.

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