San Diego’s minimum wage experiment accelerating adoption of automation

San Diego raised its minimum wage very rapidly. Data suggests that while the wage hike benefits those with minimum wage jobs, it is also rapidly eliminating low wage jobs all together. Read the entire (and long) story for the details.

This blog has long noted that while automation is going to happen regardless, rapid minimum wage hikes accelerate the adoption of automated systems, eliminating jobs more rapidly:

And California’s decision to speed Darwinian selection also encourages automation. McDonald’s is rolling out ordering kiosks, Starbucks is testing robotic baristas, and hamburger-making machines are nearing production.

One local restaurant owner told me that all his future locations will allow customers to buy and pour their own beers.

A 50-handle system costs $1,800 per handle. That’s well above $1,000 per handle for the bartender-based system, but it pays off in a year by eliminating one or two workers per shift. Presumably someday robots will listen to our problems, too.

Rising productivity is good for the bulk of consumers, because fewer workers equate to lower bills.

Source: Is San Diego’s new minimum wage already hurting its poor? – The San Diego Union-Tribune

Eliminating jobs through automation is not necessarily a bad thing. ATM machines, self service gas, self service check outs are all examples of recent semi-automated services that we take for granted. Throughout history, many jobs have gone away – elevator operators and telephone “manual switch” operators all went away.

If automation frees up labor to be put to more productive uses, this is a good outcome. However, there will be some who are not able to transition to higher value added work and may be come unemployable.

Merely having Tor software may be used against you in Court?

In other words, Tor:

Solari said Winner’s laptop also contained software that could enable her to access online black-markets and buy items — such as a fake ID or passport — without revealing her identity or location.

Source: Accused NSA leaker wanted to ‘burn the White House down’ | New York Post

They can make the same allegation about encryption. Attempting to protect your medical, financial and educational records is a sign of nefarious intent?

Every journalist in existence, if they are any good at all, has Tor on their computer. So do private industry analysts reviewing competitor’s products and government policy plans. Tor is a browser that assists with anonymous browsing and accessing web sites as it hides one’s true IP address from the destination web server. There are numerous and valid reasons to use Tor to access publicly available information.

#Microsoft releases #WindowsXP, 8 and Windows Server 2003 patches for #WannaCrype

“WannaCrypt” is the malware that attacked and encrypted computer contents, globally, and then wormed its way through networks to other unpatched Windows computers.

The threat was so large and damaging, that Microsoft has released patches for no longer supported operating systems Windows XP, Windows Server 2003 and Windows 8. Of interest, according to Microsoft, the WannaCrypt malware exploited a previously patched vulnerability in Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 and did not have any impact on systems running Windows 10.

For information see the Microsoft blog.

Security and privacy concerns for #IoT #InternetOfThings

In light of the global ransomware attack that took place the past couple of days, this is more true than ever:

  • Securing sensitive data generated by IoT devices is already the top concern of most security professionals (36%).

  • This is followed closely by privacy violations related to data generated by IoT devices (30%).

  • Cyber attacks are also a growing threat as more connected devices join the IoT ecosystem.

Source: IoT Security – Combining Innovation with Protection

Surveys suggest consumers are not that concerned about #IoT security and privacy threats – they should be very concerned!

Android apps secretly listen to your viewed TV commercials 

234 Android apps have been identified as using your phone to monitor TV advertising effectiveness:

The apps silently listen for ultrasonic sounds that marketers use as high-tech beacons to indicate when a phone user is viewing a TV commercial or other type of targeted audio. A representative sample of just five of the 234 apps have been downloaded from 2.25 million to 11.1 million times, according to the researchers, citing official Google Play figures. None of them discloses the tracking capabilities in their privacy policies.

Source: More Android phones than ever are covertly listening for inaudible sounds in ads | Ars Technica