Weekend tech reading: Catching Silk Road's Dread Pirate Roberts

By on
silk road, dread pirate roberts

How the feds took down the Dread Pirate Roberts The Dread Pirate Roberts, head of the most brazen drug trafficking site in the world, was a walking contradiction. Though the government says he raked in $80 million in commissions from running Silk Road, he allegedly lived under a false name in one bedroom of a San Francisco home that he shared with two other guys and for which he paid $1,000 a month in cash. Though his alleged alter ego penned manifestos about ending "violence, coercion, and all forms of force," the FBI claims that he tried to arrange a hit on someone who had blackmailed him. Ars Technica

Dell declares the PC 'undead,' Windows 8.1 starts to shine Dell really is pushing hard against the mindset that the PC is dead this week. The industry heavyweight had one of their largest PC launches ever and while tablets were a part of the launch, the devices didn’t eclipse the overall initiative. Personally, I think this is quite a strategic approach, simply because tablets haven’t been trending that well of late (particularly for Apple), and while volumes continue to rise, they are mostly tied to really cheap products. TG Daily

Remembering my friend, Hiroshi Yamauchi One day [circa 1985], my wife showed me an article in a Japanese magazine that said that Nintendo’s president Hiroshi Yamauchi played Go, a Japanese board game. Coincidentally, someone had sent me a Go game for the Commodore 64. The C64 had the same CPU as Nintendo’s Famicom (NES), a 6502. I sent Mr. Yamauchi a fax on a Tuesday, telling him I could make a Go game for the Famicom and that I would like to meet him before I left for the States that Saturday. Wired

China employs two million microblog monitors state media say The Beijing News says the monitors, described as internet opinion analysts, are on state and commercial payrolls. China's hundreds of millions of web users increasingly use microblogs to criticise the state or vent anger. Recent research suggested Chinese censors actively target social media. The report by the Beijing News said that these monitors were not required to delete postings. BBC

Hello, Nexus 5 service manual Well, here is a bountiful leak on a Saturday night. Take a look at the Nexus 5 official service manual (LG-D821), which gives us just about every dirty detail you could ask for outside of a release date and price. We’ve included the 281-page document for you below in case you are at home tonight chillin’. We’re out and about, but will have more tomorrow. Droid Life

Inside the Arctic Circle, where your Facebook data live Every year, computing giants including Hewlett-Packard, Dell, and Cisco Systems sell north of $100 billion in hardware. That's the total for the basic iron -- servers, storage, and networking products. Add in specialized security, data analytics systems, and related software, and the figure gets much, much larger. BusinessWeek

Mugged by a mug shot online In March last year, a college freshman named Maxwell Birnbaum was riding in a van filled with friends from Austin, Tex., to a spring-break rental house in Gulf Shores, Ala. As they neared their destination, the police pulled the van over, citing a faulty taillight. When an officer asked if he could search the vehicle, the driver -- a fraternity brother of Mr. Birnbaum’s who quickly regretted his decision -- said yes. The NY Times

Google is building Chrome OS straight into Windows 8 Google unveiled its Chrome Apps initiative recently to launch apps that exist outside of the browser and extend its reach into more of a platform, but it looks like the company has a whole lot more planned. Over the past few weeks, Google has been updating its developer version of the Chrome browser to run what's essentially Chrome OS within Windows 8's "Metro" mode. The Verge

NSA has built its own, secret, warrantless, shadow social network, and you've already joined it Soon after the very earliest reporting on Ed Snowden's leaked documents about PRISM, the folks from Datacoup put together the very amusing GETPRSM website, which looks very much like the announcement of a new social network, but (the joke is) it's really the NSA scooping up all our data and making the connections. Techdirt

Analysis of Silk Road's historical impact on Bitcoin Silk Road, the online drug bazaar that has eluded authorities and been ingrained in the bitcoin narrative for years, was shut down yesterday. Ross Ulbricht was named in the court documents outlining Silk Road’s activities, as were a number of key data points that offer insights into the impact the world’s most infamous retail website has had on bitcoin. The Genesis Block

Shrinking list of video games is dominated by blockbusters Big video game makers, like their cousins in books and music, have scrambled in recent years to adapt to the digital technologies buffeting their business. Tens of millions of people now play games on smartphones and tablets, usually for a sliver of the cost of playing on a game console. The NY Times

Tom Clancy's splintered legacy: great video games, troubling worldview If you'd asked me in 1998 to look fifteen years in the future and guess who the the most enduring names in video games would be, I might've listed the usual suspects: Sid Meier, Tim Schafer, Will Wright, Shigeru Miyamoto and maybe a few others. I probably wouldn't have included Tom Clancy. Kotaku

Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.