Windows guru and Maximum PC blogger Mark Soper recently wrote about hackers exposing vulnerabilities inherent in FireWire ports, and prior to that, we learned that a can of compressed air could be used to compromise a system. Trumping them both in the fear factor arena, it now appears that monitoring defibrillators are susceptible to hacking. The problem stems from unencrypted transmissions from the defibrillator to the bedside monitor. If intercepted, hackers could then reprogram the device to stop working, or extract personally identifiable information, including your Social Security number. Read more on this potentially frightening development here.
GeForce Fans Mark Your Calendars
Two big dates are coming up for NVIDIA fans anticipating hoping for a high-end successor to the 8800 series. On March 18th, NVIDIA plans to release the GeForce 9800GX2, and then the 9800GTX on March 25th. Neither card will boast an architectural change, and will instead be based on the same 65nm G92 found on the 8800GT. Further borrowing old tricks from past releases, the GX2 will feature two PCBs sandwiched under a single heatsink (essentially a pair of 8800GTs), and might just be the heaviest videocard ever. Read more here.
Mac Office Updates
Owners of Office 2008 for Mac can now download the 12.0.1 update, made available yesterday. The 114MB download contains fixes that boost stability and performance, while also patching up a few security holes. Wait a tick - aren't Macs impervious to security threats? Damn those deceptive (yet amusing) Mac commercials!
Max Payne 3
It's been roughly five years since the last Max Payne game hit store shelves, and when pinged on whether another sequel could be in the works, a Take-Two representative told Shacknews "It's a little too early to comment on any particular title but we have a lot of interesting things going on." Pessimists will read that as a standard 'no comment,' while fans of the franchise and those holding a glass half full will point out the lack of denial in the response. Further fueling speculation, Take-Two referenced reviving past notable Rockstar properties, but wouldn't offer any specifics.
Dive Deep into YouTube
Google's YouTube today announced plans to give away tools allowing developers and programmers deeper access into the video sharing site. With the new tools and enhanced APIs, web developers gain a new level of flexibility, both in uploading videos and offering "chromeless" players without the traditional YouTube interface and branding. YouTube's end goal is for users to "engage the world of video and actively participate in the YouTube community wherever they are, whenever they want."
Free USB Key
In an effort to promote going green, IBM's giving away a free 512MB Solar USB key. The thumb drive ships "loaded with white papers, videos, and case studies about going green with IBM Systems Technology." Read more and request your eKit here.