Drones Banned From Flying While Obama Visits London

People love drones, from their ability to race around the skies to capturing the most picture perfect moments you just don’t feel safe taking yourself. Sadly if you were looking at grabbing a quick picture of President Obama during his visit to London in a couple of week’s you will have to shelve your drone thanks to plans to ban drones from flying around London during the president’s visit.

The bulletin was released by the National Air Traffic Service (NATS) and the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and will restrict all types of aircraft on Thursday, April 21st (The Queens birthday) and Sunday, April 24th. The restrictions will be in place on all aircraft, including drones like the one that crashed at the muses content, banning any craft from flying below 762 metres (2,500 feet).

The restrictions are in place over three separate areas, with each area having specific times and dates, with the most restrictive being in Area 2 who find a lack of air traffic all the way from 8PM on the 21st till 9.30AM on the 24th.

With this becoming a common measure for high-profile events, you should be weary of flying your drones when big events are happening as you can often end up with large fines and a ban on using any type of drone.

Wireless Passwords Could Be a Thing of the Past Thanks to MIT Research

 

A new wireless technology in development by MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab could allow us to finally say goodbye to the Wi-Fi password.

The technology, currently named Chronos, is capable of allowing a single wireless access point to detect the location of networked users to tens of centimetres in accuracy. This immediately has a number of possible applications, one of which could allow wi-fi networks to be limited in access to only those within the building, as well as smart home applications such as tracking people’s movement and adjusting temperature and lighting as they move.

Chronos works by computing the “time of flight” of a wireless signal with an average error of just 0.47 nanoseconds according to MIT, which when multiplied by the speed of light allows Chronos to accurately detect not only the angle from the access point a user is at, but also their distance from it. Comparatively, existing wi-fi devices lack the bandwidth to accurately measure the time of flight of a signal, so in order to detect the locations of users, multiple access points were required for triangulation.

It was discovered after MIT Ph.D. student Deepak Vasisht observed that the signals travel through the air at a different frequency than within a Wi-Fi device that is being detected. He and his team were then able to exploit this difference in signals, testing their new algorithm in a two-bedroom apartment containing four people, where Chronos could accurately detect the room a user was in 94% of the time. When tested in a cafe, the detection rate of in-store customers compared to out-of-store hijackers was 97% accurate, which could allow wireless passwords to be rendered redundant in such cases, as only those in the store can connect to the network.

Whether this will truly be the end of the wireless password is unlikely, as there will always be a call for a higher level of security on many networks. For lightly restricted public networks, though, this technology could be a godsend, without requiring businesses set up a complex multi-access-point solution. A paper summarizing the study of the technology was presented last month by Vasisht at the USENIX Symposium on Networked Systems Design and Implementation.

Researchers Develop Ways to Calculate Distance Through WiFi

We all use WiFi at some point, be it at work or at home, we rely on the technology to avoid the miles and miles of cables that we would overwise have to plug and unplug every time we wanted to grab a drink or watch a movie on Netflix. Researchers may have developed a way to accurately calculate distance through WiFi, a feature that could see wireless communications made more secure and controlled.

Researchers from MIT’s CSAIL team managed to achieve the feat using just a single router by measuring the “time of flight” for the WiFi signals between both the transmitter and receiving components, with a margin of error of just 0.5 nanoseconds, 20 times more accurate that other systems. Once the time was calculated they multiplied it by the speed of light, resulting in the distance between people and their wireless routers.

Using a four room apartment as an example, the researchers managed to locate the correct room for a user 94% of the time. Not stopping there the researchers took the technology to a cafe and managed to track down if someone was within the cafe with a 97% accuracy. Not stopping at wireless routers the technique was then applied to a drone, restricting the distance of the drone from the operator with an error margin of just 2-inches.

With the ability to limit or restrict access to a network by a user’s distance, public networks, and drones could be made more secure and with greater control of who, and where, people can access the systems.

Near Miss at Los Angeles Airport Calls for Future Drone Regulation

Drones are on everybody’s wish list this year. If you want them to just enjoy being in charge of your very own Enterprise or just because you are curious about the new technology, you should remember to use them safely. Sadly that seems to be a lesson that was missed by a drone pilot who caused a near miss at Los Angeles International Airport.

The incident involved a drone flying around 200 feet from a plane of a Lufthansa aircraft, a move which has sparked debate for greater control over drones and the authorities abilities to manage, control and restrict drones freedom when it comes to regulated space.

This is not the first time a drone has come close to the plane, with the same thing happening at Heathrow and other airports around the world. The problem with drones is their ability to operate remotely makes tracking down a drone’s operator difficult, an act which the authorities want to become easier.

Some of the proposals include the geofencing of drones sold domestically, meaning that drones would be unable to fly above their legal altitude or the use of collision-avoidance software. With the requirement for drones to now be registered, it is expected that drone capturing equipment such as the SkyWall could offer authorities a way of tracking down and tackling dangerous drone users.

Free Data Day Went Bad for Mobile Carrier

People use their mobile phones for a lot of things, from texting and playing games to browsing and downloading. The problem with using something like your mobile or even your computer is that when the networks go down, you lose everything. Not being able to watch your latest show can be troublesome and so Telstra, an Australian provider, offered a day of free data to say sorry for an outage only to find it had a bad impact on the more than just their network.

With no restrictions on what the data could be used for, the “Free Mobile Data Sunday” promotion showed everyone just how much restrictions make us hold back, with users going as far as using 1.8 thousand terabytes in less than 24 hours. If this wasn’t enough of a figure to startle you, it equates to someone downloading an episode of Games of Thrones 5.1 million times.

While this may not seem like much, it was reported that the traffic was so high it even slowed down network speeds in parts of Australia.

Do you use your mobile phone for browsing the internet? How much do you use and would removing restrictions change how often you use it? Some users even used as much as 421 gigabytes, over 52 times the normal monthly cap of 8GB.

Valve Restricts Steam Service Features to Users Who Don’t Spend At Least $5

If you’ve ever been bullied or targeted on Steam by spammers or phishers, then you might be excited to know that Valve has set some restrictions to its online service. Valve stated on their Support Page that they are adding this security measure to deal with the latter problems.

Therefore, if you would like to have full access to Steam as a new user or even as an old one who used the service only for Free-to-Play games, you need to spend some money to get the full features.

Valve says that if you add at least $5 on Steam Wallet it should get you access, regardless if you actually buy anything or not.

Other methods of unlocking your account(s) include purchasing games that are equal to at least $5, adding a Steam Wallet card to your Steam account or purchasing a Steam gift.

If you think that you can do something to get around this, you are out of luck. Valve says that activating a retail game, playing free demos, adding a non-Steam game, adding/playing trials, free-to-play games or activating promotional CD keys from GPU manufacturers (like the ones found on AMD cards) won’t get your features activated.

Now, moving to the thing that really matters. What is actually restricted? Well, the company seems to restrict pretty much every social communication in the service. You can’t add friends, open group chat, vote on Greenlight/Steam Reviews/Workshop, take part in the Steam Market or post often on Steam Discussions.

In addition to that, you can’t send anything to the Workshop, post in Workshop Discussions, access the Steam Web API, use the browser and mobile chat and on top of that, your Steam Profile will always have its level locked at 0.

Now the real kicker. Though Steam said a minimum of $5 (that is USD currency by the way), how will it work in other non-US regions? I’ll let you read their response below.

“If the Steam store isn’t in USD, we will track the purchase amount in USD by converting each purchase total made on Steam using daily exchange rates. Once you have made the equivalent of $5.00 USD or more in total Steam purchases, you will gain access to the restricted Steam features.”

So why do non-US countries have to pray for the US dollar to drop in value to not spend more than others? I mean, why not do this for all the currencies once you thought about adding the restriction? Let us know if you consider this fair or not in the comments below.

Batman: Arkham Knight Will Not Have a Physical Release for Windows in the UK

Rocksteady Studio’s latest Batman: Arkham franchise title has been announced not to have a physical release for the Windows platform outside of North America. This means that Windows users in the UK will not have an option to buy the game as a physical copy.

After being delayed twice now, the game is scheduled to be released on the 23rd of June in the UK. Warner Bros. confirmed that a physical release is in the books for North America, but the UK will only see Xbox One and PlayStation 4 physical copies on shelves; Windows fans will have to stick to purchasing a digital download with no option for a physical disk.

Warner Bros. and Rocksteady have yet to comment on why the UK market is being restricted to digital download, but one guess is that it would serve as a test market for the future withdrawal from physical distribution. Previous Warner Bros. titles, including those in the Batman: Arkham franchise, have come with in-box redemption codes designed to restrict second-hand sales, pointing to a shift from resellable physical copies to account-locked downloads is a logical next step.

Thank you Bit-Tech for providing us with this information

Singapore Plans to Get Rid of Illegal Websites with New Law

Singapore is said to have its Law Ministry cooking up a law since April, similar to what is currently in effect in the UK, which will amend the Copyright Act and force ISPs to block infringing websites.

Indranee Rajah, Singapore’s Senior Minister of State for Law, has said that the law will give copyright owners “greater ability to protect their rights in the online space”. In doing so, all websites presenting copyright infringing content will be blocked.

“The prevalence of online piracy in Singapore turns customers away from legitimate content and adversely affects Singapore’s creative sector,” Rajah said.

The new law is said to take effect starting this August, having copyright owners apply to the court in Singapore without needing to establish the liability of the network service provider. THis means that the copyright owners do not need to issue a previously mandatory take-down notice, having the court itself dealing with such actions now.

However, though ISPs can block the websites, it cannot stop users from taking advantage of a VPN software and accessing the restricted websites. For example, the popular torrent website, The Pirate Bay, even has their own proxy redirect website, which grants users access to their so-called ‘restricted’ website. The ban in question seems to apply, as in the UK, for people attempting to type in just the website address and not the bypass techniques, rendering the actual link restriction almost obsolete.

Thank you CNet for providing us with this information