Today in Tech News Digest, Edward Snowden talks to NBC, troubling TrueCrypt tales, CryEngine comes to Steam, Google Video Quality Report ranks ISPs, Vimeo gets High Maintenance, Ballmer buys the Clippers, and 25 years of LOLs.
Snowden Talks To NBC News
Edward Snowden, who leaked National Security Agency (NSA) documents to journalists, has given his first interview to the American media, sitting down to talk with Brian Williams of NBC Nightly News. The full interview can be viewed online at NBC News, but those with limited attention spans can read the highlights below.
Snowden sees himself as a patriot, not for the government, but for the country, the constitution, and his fellow Americans. He expressed a desire to return home, and would accept “a short period” in jail to do so.
He asserted that whistleblowers are necessary as “the Constitution of the United States has been violated on a massive scale.” However, Snowden maintains that before becoming a whistleblower he tried to go through the proper channels only to be told, “You should stop asking questions.”
He also addressed concerns he was acting against the United States while in Russia, stating, “I have no relationship with the Russian government at all. I’m — I’ve never met the Russian president. I’m not supported by the Russian government. I’m not taking money from the Russian government.”
Snowden believes he did the right thing in revealing some of the methods the NSA uses to spy on people, both in the U.S. and beyond. Everybody else has to make their own mind up, but it’s clear from the reactions to the revelations that have come to light since he fled to Russia that he isn’t alone in his fight against Big Brother.
TrueCrypt Audited Amid Strange Shutdown
“WARNING: Using TrueCrypt is not secure as …” WARNING: Using TrueCrypt is (n)ot (s)ecure (a)s … TrueCrypt is (n) (s) (a)”
— Chris Duckett (@dobes) May 30, 2014
Edward Snowden’s favorite encryption software TrueCrypt is causing concern amongst security experts. Earlier this week, TrueCrypt was suddenly and inexplicably taken offline, with the anonymous developers claiming the software is “not secure as it may contain unfixed security issues,” and advising users to switch to the Microsoft-owned BitLocker.
TrueCrypt had passed the first stage of an independent security audit, with the second stage due to be concluded later in the year. Speculation is rife that the developers panicked due to pressure from the authorities, but it’s more likely they just tired of the project.
Others look set to take over development of TrueCrypt, but we advise erring on the side of caution until the full facts are known.
Crytek Releases CryEngine On Steam
Crytek, best known as the developer behind Crysis and Far Cry, has released its CryEngine development technology through Steam. Indie game developers can now use the CryEngine technology to create visually stunning titles.
There is a subscription fee being charged for CryEngine, but all games created using it are considered royalty-free, whether they’re commercially successful or not. Which means the best game developers could end up making a lot more money than they’re paying out.
YouTube Reveals Best & Worst ISPs
Google has brought its Video Quality Report to the U.S. after originally launching the initiative in Canada at the beginning of the year. The Google Video Quality Report utilizes YouTube to determine whether or not an ISP is up to the task of delivering HD video. Let us know how yours fares by leaving a comment below.
Vimeo Orders First Original Content
Vimeo is getting into the business of producing original content, ordering six episodes of High Maintenance, a show that has already proved popular on the platform. These new episodes will be released through Vimeo on Demand, but pricing has yet to be announced.
Vimeo is following the same path already well-worn by YouTube, Amazon, and Netflix, who have all previously commissioned original programming. Vimeo has reportedly set aside $10 million for original content, all of which will be sold through Vimeo on Demand.
Steve Ballmer Buys The L.A. Clippers
So excited for my guy Ballmer lol! don’t mind me as i join the #ClipperNation bandwagon
— Tramaine Isabell (@oTrillMaine) May 30, 2014
Former Microsoft boss Steve Ballmer, who handed over the reins to Satya Nadella earlier this year, is buying the Los Angeles Clippers. After agreeing to pay $2 billion to buy the franchise, Ballmer said, “I love basketball. And I intend to do everything in my power to ensure that the Clippers continue to win — and win big — in Los Angeles.”
Clippers fans should hope Steve Ballmer is a better influence on their team than he was at Microsoft. But then surely anyone is better than Donald Sterling.
Celebrating 25 Years Of LOLs
Man, i can’t sleep lol
— ? (@ashhleeeyxoxo) May 30, 2014
And finally, LOL is 25 years old this month, with the acronym for Laugh Out Loud or Laughing Out Loud believed to have originated in May 1989. It was first used in the 1960s to mean Little Old Lady, but evolved into its current use in the 1980s.
Unlike the Internet expressions that need to die, LOL isn’t going away anytime soon. It is used so extensively that it actually no longer holds any weight. Is the person responsible for the above tweet really laughing out loud about not being able to sleep? We suspect not.
Tech News Digest… Breaking News Into Bite-Sized Chunks.
Image Credit: Greens EFA via Flickr