Tech News Today 469

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Tech News Today
Episode 469

Contents

Tech News Today 469: Spam-Cop Code

Foxconn workers unhappy about reduced hours, Google's plan to sell tablets, MasterCard and Visa hacked to pieces, and more.

Submit and vote on story coverage at technewstoday.reddit.com

Hosts

Top Stories

  • Apple Labor Pact Could Ripple Across China
  • Apple supplier Foxconn cuts working hours, workers ask why
  • Foxconn workers not all pleased with fewer hours
  • Apple, Foxconn pay hike could damage other companies' bottom lines
    • Foxconn's plans to cut overtime hours for its 1.2M mainland Chinese workers to 49/week is worrying some, even though compensation is supposed to be raised so that they don't lose wages. - Fair Labor Association's (FLA's) audit results showed employees working more hours than allowed under the FLA Code standard & Chinese legal limits. Some employees worked more than 7 days in a row, violation
    • FLA surveyed Foxconn workers: 48% of Foxconn's employees found their workloads reasonable, over 1/3 of respondents said that they'd like to work more hours to make more $. 17.7% of the workers were interested in working less.
    • Foxconn is thought (by workers) to be cleaner, safer, more stuff to do than some smaller factories.
    • small shopping mall outside Longhua plant. Cramped apartment blocks have hair salons, snack stores, gaming arcades and Internet "bars", playing computer games, watching Korean & Hong Kong soap operas is popular
    • Reuters talked to workers at Foxconn plant in Longhua, southern China: Wu Jun "We are worried we will have less money to spend. Of course, if we work less overtime, it would mean less money"
    • Chen Yamei "We are here to work and not to play, so our income is very important" she says she's been told she can work max 36 hours/month overtime. "A lot of us are unhappy with this. We think that 60 hours of overtime a month would be reasonable and that 36 hours would be too little." She says currently she earns just over 4,000 yuan/month ($634).
    • Scott Nova, exec. director of Workers Rights Consortium (labor right's group) tells CNET: Apple's own auditor has now confirmed that Foxconn never corrected the violations in areas like excessive overtime that were first exposed six years ago.

Discussion Stories

  • MasterCard, VISA Warn of Processor Breach
  • "Major" credit-card breach reportedly hits Visa, MasterCard
    • Visa and MasterCard warning banks that a breach at an unnamed card processor may involve more than 10 million card numbers
    • Visa and MC started sending out non-public warnings last week about specific cards to payment card issuers.
    • The card associations stated that the breached credit card processor was compromised between Jan. 21, 2012 and Feb. 25, 2012
    • The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the breached processor was Global Payments Inc.,
    • law enforcement investigators believe that this breach may be somehow connected to Dominican street gangs in and around New York City.
    • full Track 1 and Track 2 data was lifted, meaning the hackers would have everything they need to clone counterfeit cards.
    • Update, 4:32 p.m. ET: Atlanta-based processor Global Payments just confirmed that they discovered a breach in early March 2012.
  • Yahoo Layoffs Set to Begin Next Week, Followed by Restructuring the Week After
    • Kara Swisher at ATD reports Yahoo is preparing to begin layoffs of what could be thousands of employees starting next week, according to multiple sources, and is then expected to announce a new restructuring of the company the week after. -- Swisher's sources also note the plans are not set in stone
    • Thompson, along with consultants he has hired from the Boston Consulting Group, presented the possible plan in front of Yahoo’s senior execs on Tuesday. Then followed on Wednesday with meetings with other top executives.
    • the cuts will be deep and mostly aimed at the product, research and marketing units of Yahoo.
    • figure out how to dispense with its ad technology org and, potentially, its search business.
    • New org would focus on media, advertising, and a small research group
  • Wikipedia’s Next Big Thing: Wikidata, A Machine-Readable, User-Editable Database Funded By Google, Paul Allen And Others
    • TC reports The first new project to emerge from the Wikimedia Foundation since 2006, is now beginning development. It's called Wikidata
    • new effort to provide a database of knowledge that can be read and edited by humans and machines alike.
    • DBpedia, a community effort to extract structured content from Wikipedia and make it available online tried this before
    • the data will bring all the localized versions of Wikipedia on par with each other in terms of the basic facts they house. Will mostly drive the infoboxes across all languages
    • Wikimedia Deutschland is leading the effort. They hope to hand it over to the Wikimedia foundation in March 2013
    • August: One common source of structured data for all Wikipediae// December 2012 allow editors to add and use data//Phase 3 automatic creation of lists and charts based on the data
    • Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence donated 1.3 million Euros to the project -- Another quarter of the funding comes from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, through its Science program, and another quarter comes from Google.

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INCOMING

Voicemail

Email

"Hi TNT gang,

Excuse my selfishness -- I intended to give Alan the last word in the HTML5 debate, but the discussion raised some very salient questions and I just couldn't miss the possibility of perhaps putting them to a group of regular users like the TNT audience and chat room...

UI geeks sometimes refer to the 'look and feel' of a user interface. As we all know, the web destroyed notions of a standardised 'look', so modern toolkits like Android, XUL (Zool), and JavaFX are highly styleable just like HTML. But what about 'feel'? If web apps are to rely on rival UI toolkits instead of a standard, things like touch gestures may vary across apps, reflecting the nuances of each underlying toolkit. The $64,000 question is: do you guys actually care? iOS developers can style their UI, but familiar controls (physical and screen) must behave largely as expected -- yet some say this is too limiting, so where should the future lie?

Talk of standards and toolkits may bore people, but I implore end users not to let computer scientists build the future for you; let us know what matters, so the tools and standards of today will give you the apps you want tomorrow.

Okay, I'm going to shut up now :)

Simon (Liverpool, UK)"


"why not open-source a competition to redesign the /r/technewstoday subreddit via CSS? User-interaction, you know it makes sense :) It could go alongside the TWIT-network theme, or whatever, but you have to admit it's pretty tame compared to /r/xbox360 or /r/apple, for instance. I'm just a spam-cop code makes my head warm-up


-- Regards

Kylde"

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Production Information

  • Edited by: Jason
  • Notes:
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