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Apple's FaceID

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This is a good interview with Apple's SVP of Software Engineering about FaceID.

Honestly, I don't know what to think. I am confident that Apple is not collecting a photo database, but not optimistic that it can't be hacked with fake faces. I dislike the fact that the police can point the phone at someone and have it automatically unlock. So this is important:

I also quizzed Federighi about the exact way you "quick disabled" Face ID in tricky scenarios -- like being stopped by police, or being asked by a thief to hand over your device.

"On older phones the sequence was to click 5 times [on the power button], but on newer phones like iPhone 8 and iPhone X, if you grip the side buttons on either side and hold them a little while -- we'll take you to the power down [screen]. But that also has the effect of disabling Face ID," says Federighi. "So, if you were in a case where the thief was asking to hand over your phone -- you can just reach into your pocket, squeeze it, and it will disable Face ID. It will do the same thing on iPhone 8 to disable Touch ID."

That squeeze can be of either volume button plus the power button. This, in my opinion, is an even better solution than the "5 clicks" because it's less obtrusive. When you do this, it defaults back to your passcode.

More:

It's worth noting a few additional details here:

  • If you haven't used Face ID in 48 hours, or if you've just rebooted, it will ask for a passcode.

  • If there are 5 failed attempts to Face ID, it will default back to passcode. (Federighi has confirmed that this is what happened in the demo onstage when he was asked for a passcode -- it tried to read the people setting the phones up on the podium.)

  • Developers do not have access to raw sensor data from the Face ID array. Instead, they're given a depth map they can use for applications like the Snap face filters shown onstage. This can also be used in ARKit applications.

  • You'll also get a passcode request if you haven't unlocked the phone using a passcode or at all in 6.5 days and if Face ID hasn't unlocked it in 4 hours.

Also be prepared for your phone to immediately lock every time your sleep/wake button is pressed or it goes to sleep on its own. This is just like Touch ID.

Federighi also noted on our call that Apple would be releasing a security white paper on Face ID closer to the release of the iPhone X. So if you're a researcher or security wonk looking for more, he says it will have "extreme levels of detail" about the security of the system.

Here's more about fooling it with fake faces:

Facial recognition has long been notoriously easy to defeat. In 2009, for instance, security researchers showed that they could fool face-based login systems for a variety of laptops with nothing more than a printed photo of the laptop's owner held in front of its camera. In 2015, Popular Science writer Dan Moren beat an Alibaba facial recognition system just by using a video that included himself blinking.

Hacking FaceID, though, won't be nearly that simple. The new iPhone uses an infrared system Apple calls TrueDepth to project a grid of 30,000 invisible light dots onto the user's face. An infrared camera then captures the distortion of that grid as the user rotates his or her head to map the face's 3-D shape­ -- a trick similar to the kind now used to capture actors' faces to morph them into animated and digitally enhanced characters.

It'll be harder, but I have no doubt that it will be done.

More speculation.

I am not planning on enabling it just yet.

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chrisrosa
19 hours ago
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some good info about Face ID on the #iPhoneX. i'm a bit more optimistic about the tech tho. the previous face recognition systems used on laptops were much more basic. the iPhone X has what amounts to an Xbox Kinect in it's front camera array. all that being said, i look forward to this phone hitting the streets and people trying to hack the system.
San Francisco, CA
SecurityFeed
2 hours ago
Are you referring to Windows Hello? That's straight outta xBox. And Apple's track record on initial OS releases and authentication bugs isn't very good.
chrisrosa
just a second ago
Sure, but most laptops only have a webcam, w/o all the additional sensors the X has. by no means am I saying it's not hackable, but i'll bet that it's better.
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South Park triggers everyone’s home devices with clever NSFW hacks

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The 21st season of South Park premiered this Wednesday, hilariously parodying Kendrick Lamar, white supremacists, and messing up with home assistants like Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home in the process. ... Read more

The post South Park triggers everyone’s home devices with clever NSFW hacks appeared first on Lost At E Minor: For creative people.

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chrisrosa
19 hours ago
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❤️
San Francisco, CA
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Bitcoin price drops following report that China is going to shut down local exchanges

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 Another day, another crash and another Chinese ban. This time, as Reuters spotted, a single report from financial news site Caixin is saying that the Chinese government is considering banning cryptocurrency exchanges in China. In particular, the report is saying that Chinese citizens won’t be able to use exchanges to buy bitcoins, ethers and more using Chinese yuan, and vice versa. Read More






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chrisrosa
11 days ago
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pretty sure headlines like are is just to create buying opportunities.
San Francisco, CA
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iHome teams up with Amazon to bring Alexa to your bedside table

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iHome recently released its iAVS16, an alarm clock/music system hybrid with full Alexa integration.

The iAVS16 may seem to follow the good old-fashioned clock radio format - LCD display, snooze button and all - but it is so much more: it can do pretty much anything that an Amazon Echo can do (no additional smart speakers necessary). You can ask for everything from the weather forecast to traffic conditions, and because the iAVS16 supports many streaming music services, you can listen to all your favorite songs as well. The company claimed in a press release that the clock is the first voice-activated Alexa-enabled clock radio from a major brand.

The alarm clock offers a plethora of cool features. It boasts far-field listening capabilities (the better to hear you with, my dear) as well as Smart Plug compatibility, so you can control all your favorite iHome Smart Plug devices. In addition to supporting streaming music services like Spotify, Amazon Music and Pandora, the iAVS16 also includes programmable presets so you can play your favorite playlists or radio stations with a single touch.

iHome says that along with the LCD display, the clock will have LED lighting with unique patterns for different Alexa functions - much like Amazon Echo speakers do. However, instead of a slim light ring, the entire bottom of the device will glow. The company refers to this as "mood lighting," but some users might find it bothersome.

The iAV16 will set you back about $150, and is available for preorder on Amazon and on iHome's website.

See at Amazon

Thoughts?

How do you feel about the iAV16? Would you like to see more Alexa-enabled products from iHome? Give us a shout in the comments!

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chrisrosa
11 days ago
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guess #Alexa is going to hear even more people boning now. @amazon...you pervs!
San Francisco, CA
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How to Make a Leather Handle Wrap--Without Stitching

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Artist Cam Bergerman counts archery and leatherworking among his hobbies. Having learned how to craft leather handle wraps the traditional way, with stitching, he decided to experiment a bit:

I had an idea a while back for a way to join a seam in leather without anything but the leather itself. The idea is similar to a zipper. I finally got a chance to try it out on a handle wrap, and was quite happy with how it ended up.
From experimenting on some scrap, I found that the hole diameter has to be slightly larger than (edit) the distance between the holes.
Notice in the pic below, I did not cut out toward the edge on the top and bottom holes along the left side. This keeps it from "unzipping" when it's put together.
You may need some pliers to pull the first and last tabs through the holes, since they are not cut open like the rest.
Once it's started, just alternate tucking the tabs under each other. When you get to the end you might have to use pliers again. You want the first and last tabs to be as wide as you can possibly fit through the holes, since they are basically what hold the whole thing together.
You can tool and/or stain the leather how ever you like. This wrap was a nice snug fit, so I had to use some saddle soap to lube it up enough to slide it onto the widest part of the bow's grip.
There are several variables that you have to take into account, including the size of the holes that you punch, the thickness of the leather you are using, and how much of a "tab" you leave underneath the joint. You could figure the size out by trial and error, or if you are an engineer you could do some complicated math, but this is how I figured it out. I had a couple scrap pieces that I had used to test the idea. I "zipped" them up, taped them tightly around where the grip would end up being, and then unzipped the leather from the front. Then it was just a matter of measuring to get the correct width. As far as the length, just match it to your handle.

Nice work, Bergerman!

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chrisrosa
13 days ago
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welcome back! hope you had a good burn.
San Francisco, CA
samuel
15 days ago
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The Haight in San Francisco
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Mactracker 7.6.6

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Adds detailed information about all recent hardware and operating system releases, including. (Free, 91.8 MB)

 

Read the full article at TidBITS, the oldest continuously published technology publication on the Internet. To get a full-text RSS feed, help support our work and become a TidBITS member! Members also enjoy an ad-free version of our Web site, email delivery of individual articles, the ability to make long comments with live links, and discounts on Take Control orders and other Apple-related products.

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chrisrosa
30 days ago
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so happy this was finally updated.
San Francisco, CA
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