Four short links: 29 Sep 2020
IOT Security, Scale vs Experience, Social Bots, and Distributed Consensus
- When Coffeemakers Demand Ransom — So he then examined the mechanism the coffee maker used to receive firmware updates. It turned out they were received from the phone with—you guessed it—no encryption, no authentication, and no code signing. Nothing remarkable here other than it’s 2020 and companies still put crappy software into their hardware.
- Returns to Scale vs Experience — Big machines are sometimes more efficient. But they cost more, so fewer can be produced with a finite budget. Small machines are cheaper and may benefit from improvement over time, driven by experience in building more units. When does this experience lead to greater overall efficiency? We derive an approximation which, given a learning rate, tells how much smaller a machine must be to overcome an initial efficiency disadvantage.
- Ten Years of Studying Social Bots — The first work that specifically addressed the detection of automated accounts in online social networks dates back to January 2010. A good history, courtesy the ACM.
- CRDTs are the Future — A love note to CRDTs from someone who worked on Wave.