Letting down our guard with web privacy Say you’ve come across a discount online retailer promising a steal on hand-stitched espadrilles for spring. You start setting up an account by offering your e-mail address -- but before you can finish, there’s a ping on your phone. A text message. You read it and respond, then return to the Web site, enter your birth date, click “F” for female, agree to the company’s terms of service and carry on browsing. But wait: What did you just agree to? Did you mean to reveal information as vital as your date of birth and e-mail address? The NY Times

Details of Xeon E3-1200 v3 "Haswell" processors Another day, another Intel roadmap leak. Last week Intel leaked full product launch schedule, and last weekend Computerbase discovered PDF file, containing recent server roadmap with specifications of Xeon E3-1200 v3 microprocessors. The PDF file since then was taken offline. Intel Xeon E3 v3 lineup includes 13 microprocessors, clocked as high as 3.6 GHz, and with Thermal Design Power ranging from 16 Watt to 84 Watt. The chips are based on Haswell microarchitecture, and built on 22nm technology. CPU World

7 hidden gems in Windows Blue Windows Blue leaked last Sunday. And a few days later, Microsoft publicly acknowledged its existence (coincidentally or not) in the announcement for its BUILD conference. The first reactions from brave reviewers who have installed the, still quite buggy, Build 9364, are mixed at best. Personally, I'm not concerned that the desktop is going to go away anytime soon. Nor am I upset that Blue focus mostly on the Modern UI. But do these early changes make me want to spend more time in the Modern UI environment? Not yet. ITworld

The bacon-wrapped economy Last July, Google threw an office party. But this being Google -- the third largest company in the world as of January -- it wasn't really a standard ice-cream-cake-and-canned-beer office party. The event was luau-themed, so the company hired staff to dig big holes in its Mountain View campus' lawn and fit spits inside for the purposes of roasting pigs, according to people who were there. There were tables full of food and drinks scattered around. Also on offer: a sophisticated wave machine so employees could try their hands at surfing... East Bay Express

Bitcoin may be the global economy's last safe haven One of the oddest bits of news to emerge from the economic collapse of Cyprus is a corresponding rise in the value of Bitcoin, the Internet’s favorite, media-friendly, anarchist crypto-currency. In Spain, Google searches for “Bitcoin” and downloads of Bitcoin apps soared. The value of a Bitcoin went up to $78. Someone put out a press release promising a Bitcoin ATM in Cyprus. Far away, in Canada, a man said he’d sell his house for BTC5,362. Bitcoin was created in 2009 by a pseudonymous hacker who... Businessweek

Stanford creates biological transistors, the final step towards computers inside living cells Bioengineers at Stanford University have created the first biological transistor made from genetic materials: DNA and RNA. Dubbed the “transcriptor,” this biological transistor is the final component required to build biological computers that operate inside living cells. We are now tantalizingly close to biological computers that can detect changes in a cell’s environment, store a record of that change in memory made of DNA, and then trigger some kind of response... ExtremeTech

Does the sneaker have to matter? Last winter, I received an interesting invitation. Would I, and my video-game-writing partner, Rob Auten, like to travel to Boston to spend a weekend playing a complete but not yet fully polished build of BioShock Infinite, the spiritual successor to BioShock, which is among the most beloved first-person shooters of all time? After our playthrough, we were told Ken Levine, the writer and creative director behind the BioShock franchise, wanted to have a chat, writer-to-writer-to-writer, about what we thought. Grantland

When spammers go to war: behind the Spamhaus DDoS Over the last ten days, a series of massive denial-of-service attacks has been aimed at Spamhaus, a not-for-profit organization that describes its purpose as "track[ing] the Internet's spam operations and sources, to provide dependable realtime anti-spam protection for Internet networks." These attacks have grown so large -- up to 300Gb/s -- that the volume of traffic is threatening to bring down core Internet infrastructure. Ars Technica

Redbox clings to the dying DVD, and it could pay off In 2008, five years ago, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings said that the DVD market would peak in five years. It was a sendoff for his newest venture -- Netflix Watch Now, a service that streamed movies free of charge to anyone paying his company for a mail-order DVD subscription. It almost seems quaint now to think of Netflix primarily as a distributor of optical media, but that was the truth until just a few years ago. The Verge

A comment on PC gaming battery life During the process of writing the Razer Edge review, I spent a lot of my time gaming on battery. The Edge is marketed as being a mobile PC gaming console, and is pretty well suited in that role with one caveat - battery life. Razer quotes 1-2 hours of gaming battery life on the internal 41.44Wh battery, with those figures doubling when the extended battery is inserted in the gamepad controller. The range makes sense... AnandTech

TweakTown's guide to 3D printing: part 1 - what makes up a 3D printer? 3D printing is all the rage at the moment. The ability to design or download an object and watch it form in front of your eyes is a very appealing thing to a lot of people. Up until a few years ago, printing physical objects in the third dimension was something that was just out of reach for the average consumer, with entry-level commercial machines costing tens of thousands of dollars. TweakTown

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