Interesting Things #34 — Air gap


This is Beng Tan and welcome to Interesting Things, a curation of interesting stories and links from tech, work, biz, science and society.

Happy reading!


Jumping The Air Gap: 15 years of nation-state effort [pdf] — How malware frameworks targeting air-gapped networks operate and their most important tactics, techniques and procedures. (hn)

A Normie’s Guide to Becoming a Crypto Person — A guide to understanding the cryptocurrencies and their cultures. How to (cautiously and skeptically) fall down the rabbit hole. (hn)

The Memory Image Pattern — It rejects the idea of storing state in a database and gains both developer productivity and run-time performance. (hn)

Do we really need Undefined Behavior? — Even some of the most basic optimizations that all compilers perform require this far-reaching notion of Undefined Behavior. (hn)

Using Entropy to Identify Obfuscated Malicious Code — Malicious authors will deliberately obscure the nature of a program by rendering strings less transparent to hide malicious code. (hn)

Big Tech is mandating MFA. Hackers have workarounds — Multi-factor authentication offers users far more cybersecurity protection but it’s no panacea against hackers. (hn)

How to generate better, cheaper, more abundant random numbers — And why it is important. (hn)

Apple AirTags being used by thieves to track high-end cars to steal — Canadian police say they’ve had five such incidents since September. (hn)

An Anthropology of Clean Code — The cultural origins of the “clean” code metaphor. (hn)

Careful Trading Complexity for ‘Improvements’ — Whenever you find yourself arguing for improving infrastructure by yanking up complexity, be very careful. (hn)

Researchers develop nanometer-scale adaptive transistor — This fundamentally changes the possibilities of chip design and opens up completely new opportunities. (hn)


The Secrets of Productive Virtual Offsites - Tips from GitHub — How do you do team building online? An interview with the Director of Engineering at Github. (hn)


The Business of Extracting Knowledge from Academic Publications — After working for many months, I conclude that building knowledge bases has negligible value in industry. (hn)

How This All Happened — A short story about what happened to the U.S. economy since the end of World War II. (hn)

GameCube at 20: Nintendo insiders on the failed console that changed the industry — Engineers, marketing bosses and game developers share their memories of Nintendo’s bold purple box. (hn)


Why insects are more sensitive than they seem — The idea that insects have feelings was considered a heretical joke but scientists are rapidly reconsidering. (hn)

US surgeons test pig kidney transplant in a human — The kidney, from a genetically-altered pig, appeared to function well, say the surgical team. (hn)

DeepMind’s AI helps untangle the mathematics of knots — The machine-learning techniques could benefit other areas of maths that involve large data sets. (hn)

Californian firm touts ‘mushroom leather’ as sustainability gamechanger — Vegan leather alternative isn’t just the hot fashion must-have – it could teach us about consumption and waste. (hn)

Quantum Simulators Create a Totally New Phase of Matter — A goal of quantum computing has been to recreate bizarre quantum systems that can’t be studied in an ordinary computer. (hn)


Debt Demands a Body — The future that debt chose for me, indeed the future it chooses for many people, included a lot of shame, confusion, and pain. (hn)

Is techno-clutter ruining your life? — An article on techo-hoarding, why it exists, and why it is a class issue. (hn)

The Difference between Hamilton and Healthcare — Why are healthcare and education so expensive? (hn)

Up all night with a Twitch millionaire: The loneliness and rage of the Internet’s new rock stars — Ten hours a day, streamers are broadcasting lives of obsession and wealth for an unforgiving crowd. How long can any of them last? (hn)


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Enjoy your reading and have a good day, Beng