Home / Tag Archives: traffic

Tag Archives: traffic

Wickr teams up with Psiphon to ensure your packets arrive safely no matter where you are

Encrypted collaboration app Wickr has added a feather to its cap with a partnership with Psiphon , provider of smart VPN tools. Wickr will use Psiphon’s tech to guarantee your packets get where they need to go regardless of whether you’re at home, at a cafe with bad wi-fi, or at a cafe with bad wi-fi in China. The idea is that the user shouldn’t have to be auditing their own connection to be sure their apps will work properly. That can be a matter of safety, such as a poorly secured access point; connectivity, such as one where certain ports or apps are inoperable; or censorship, like requesting data from a service banned in the country you’re visiting. Wickr already encrypts all your traffic, so there are no worries on that account, but if the connection you’re using were to block video calls or certain traffic patterns, there’s not much the company can do about that. Psiphon, however, is in the business of circumventing deliberate or accidental blockages with a suite of tools that analyze the network and attempt to find a way to patch you through. Whether that’s anonymizing your traffic, bouncing it off non-blocked servers, doing automatic port forwarding, or some other method, the idea is the packets get through one way or another. There’s a cost in latency and throughput, of course, but while that may matter for online gaming or video streaming, it’s far less important for something like uploading an image, chatting with colleagues, and the other functions that Wickr provides. At all events you can turn the feature on or off at will. There will be a monetary cost too, of course, in the form of premiums added to paid plans. Enterprise customers will be the first to receive the Psiphon-powered traffic handling, today in fact, and the feature will then trickle its way down to other paid users and free users over the next few weeks.

Read More »

Net neutrality activists, not hackers, crashed the FCC’s comment system

An unprecedented flood of citizens concerned about net neutrality is what took down the FCC’s comment system last May, not a coordinated attack, a report from the agency’s Office of the Inspector General concluded. The report unambiguously describes the “voluminous viral traffic” resulting from John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight segment on the topic, along with some poor site design, as the cause of the system’s collapse. Here’s the critical part: The May 7-8, 2016 degradation of the FCC’s ECFS was not, as reported to the public and to Congress, the result of a DDoS attack. At best, the published reports were the result of a rush to judgment and the failure to conduct analyses needed to identify the true cause of the disruption to system availability. Rather than engaging in a concerted effort to understand better the systematic reasons for the incident, certain managers and staff at the Commission mischaracterized the event to the Office of the Chairman as resulting from a criminal act, rather than apparent shortcomings in the system. Although FCC leadership preemptively responded to the report yesterday, the report itself was not published until today. The OIG sent it to TechCrunch this morning, and you can find the full document here . The approximately 25 pages of analysis (and 75 more of related documents, some of which are already public) relate specifically to the “Event” of May 7-8 last year and its characterization by the office of the Chief Information Officer, at the time David Bray. The investigation was started on June 21, 2017. The subsequent handling of the event under public and Congressional inquiry is not included in the scope of this investigation.

Read More »

Apple’s home city Cupertino wants a Hyperloop

Cupertino, the city that hosts Apple's gigantic "spaceship campus," said it's in preliminary talks with Hyperloop to bring the high speed train to town. "We are talking to Hyperloop to have a line," said councilor Barry Chang. "If this comes to a rea...

Read More »

RideOs raises $25M to become the traffic control center for self-driving cars

A mere sprinkling of autonomous vehicles exist in a few dozen cities today. A smattering in San Francisco and Silicon Valley. A dusting in the greater Phoenix area and Pittsburgh. A few drops in Boston, Detroit, Gothenburg, Shenzhen and Singapore. And none of them—at least not yet—have been deployed as a true commercial enterprise. While the bulk of this nascent industry fixates on the system of sensors, maps, and AI necessary for vehicles to drive without a human behind the wheel, the founders of startup RideOS are directing their efforts to the day when fleets of self-driving cars hit the streets. It’s there, where human-driven and automated vehicles will be forced to mingle, that RideOS co-founders Chris Blumenberg and Justin Ho see opportunity. And so do investors. The company, which has existed for all of 11 months, has raised $25 million in a Series B funding round led by Next47, the venture arm of Siemens. Sequoia, an existing investor, and Singapore-based ST Ventures, also participated in the round. The Series B round brings the company’s total funding to $34 million. RideOS announced in June that it was partnering with Ford Motor subsidiary Autonomic and had  raised $9 million  in a Series A round led by Sequoia Capital.

Read More »

Tapping into the power grid could predict the morning traffic

Why is there traffic? This eternal question haunts civic planners, fluid dynamics professors, and car manufacturers alike. But just counting the cars on the road won’t give you a sufficient answer: you need to look at the data behind the data. In this case, CMU researchers show that electricity usage may be key to understanding movement around the city . The idea that traffic and electricity use might be related makes sense: when you turn the lights and stereo on and off indicates when you’re home to stay, when you’re sleeping, when you’re likely to leave for work or return, and so on. “Our results show that morning peak congestion times are clearly related to particular types of electricity-use patterns,” explained Sean Qian, who led the study. They looked at electricity usage from 322 households over 79 days, training a machine learning model on that usage and the patterns within it. The model learned to associate certain patterns with increases in traffic — so for instance, when a large number of households has a dip in power use earlier than usual, it might mean that the next day will see more traffic when all those early-to-bed people are also early to rise. The researchers report that their predictions of morning traffic patterns were more accurate using this model than predictions using actual traffic data. Notably, all that’s needed is the electricity usage, Qian said, nothing like demographics: “It requires no personally identifiable information from households. All we need to know is when and how much someone uses electricity.” Interestingly, the correlation goes the other way as well, and traffic patterns could be used to predict electricity demand. A few less brownouts would be welcome during a heat wave like this summer’s, so I say the more data the better.

Read More »

How To Disable Traffic Notifications (Android) – Ubergizmo

Ubergizmo How To Disable Traffic Notifications (Android) Ubergizmo One of the Google Map's features that is handy from time to time is 'Traffic Notifications', which keeps you posted about traffic conditions. If you are not much of a driver, the particular feature can be quite annoying. We are going to show you how to ...

Read More »

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s brutal education in net neutrality

DC Circuit Court Judge Brett Kavanaugh has been nominated for the position of Supreme Court Justice, and on this occasion I think it warranted that we revisit in detail the sound intellectual thrashing this man suffered at the hands of his colleagues just last year on the topic of the internet and net neutrality. Because Kavanaugh was very, very wrong then and gives every indication that he will take his ignorance unapologetically to the highest court in the land. To set the scene: In 2015 the United States Telecom Association sued the FCC, alleging the Open Internet Order that passed earlier that year, establishing net neutrality as we know it — or rather, knew it — was illegal. This highly watched case was heard late in 2015 and the decision was issued six months later, in June of 2016. DC Circuit Judges Srinivasan, Tatel and Williams ruled against the telecoms, essentially finding that the FCC was well within its jurisdiction in establishing net neutrality rules to begin with, and also that the rule as written was lawful. Unsatisfied with this ruling, the USTA petitioned to have the case reheard “en banc,” meaning with all active circuit judges present. This petition was denied, primarily because the Open Internet Order was by that point in peril of replacement, and new deliberations would as likely as not soon be rendered moot. But two judges had dissenting opinions to bruit, and so the court published them alongside the denial — though unfortunately for them Srinivasan used the same opportunity to demolish their arguments. It would have been better for them, in retrospect, if they had remained silent, rather than raising their profound ignorance like a dirty flag to be mocked and pointed at forever — as we do here today. I covered this disaster in less detail then , because it was only one case and news story among many having to do with net neutrality, and having no official consequences (the motion, after all, was denied) it was only worth touching on in brief. But now, with Kavanaugh ascendant, I feel it is important to resurface his late folly as evidence of his unsuitability for the position to which he has been nominated. His dissent deeply misinterprets multiple Supreme Court decisions, demonstrates a profound lack of understanding about how the industry works and produces absurd results if taken to its logical conclusions. I’ll present Kavanaugh’s arguments in good faith, since they were offered that way, and then summarize their point-by-point demolishment by Srinivasan, the FCC or common sense. Wrong on jurisdiction Kavanaugh’s first argument is that the FCC’s rule is illegal to begin with because it does not have authority to issue it.

Read More »

An immodest proposal: it’s time for scooter superhighways

“If a problem cannot be solved,” Donald Rumsfeld once wrote, “enlarge it.” I’m not about to praise him for his accomplishments, but he had a pretty good eye for diagnoses. Which takes us to the problem of urban transit. I complained recently that I didn’t care about scooter startups, because I couldn’t imagine cities ever changing in a way which made scooters really work. But lo, the scales have fallen from my eyes. What may seem to be the problem: scooters are useful and fun for many, but discarded scooters are an unsightly mess. What’s actually the problem: cities are ruled by the iron fist of King Car. Even with maximum scooter distribution and zero regulation, the real estate occupied by scooters (and bicycles) will only ever be a vanishingly tiny fraction of a vanishingly tiny fraction of that occupied by roads and parking spaces. The solution, obviously, is to allocate some of the latter to the former. No, not bike lanes. I mean, they have their place, but they’re cramped, they’re difficult to pass in, and their space is still only ever an adjunct to that allotted to the all-devouring demands of King Car.

Read More »

Waze’s Incident Reports Rolling Out In Google Maps – Ubergizmo

Waze's Incident Reports Rolling Out In Google Maps Ubergizmo Google acquired the Waze navigation app some five years ago and it remains popular with users because of one core feature: incident reports. Users can report accidents, road closures, and other traffic problems in the app which then helps other users ... and more »

Read More »

Microsoft reportedly partners with Razer for Xbox mouse and keyboard support – Neowin

Neowin Microsoft reportedly partners with Razer for Xbox mouse and keyboard support Neowin Perhaps the most well-known brand in the PC gaming accessories market, Razer has partnered with Microsoft with that goal in mind. Leaked documents from the presentation show Razer's Turret keyboard and mouse working with the Xbox One, as well as a ... Microsoft and Razer are working on Xbox keyboard and mouse support The Verge Microsoft and Razer might be working on an Xbox keyboard and mouse partnership Windows Central Xbox's evolving first-party strategy GamesIndustry.biz all 95 news articles »

Read More »