Friday’s Fact or Fiction

It’s all true.
The hackers are converging today on the Hotel Pennsylvania in NYC for the 5th Hackers on Planet Earth (HOPE) Conference.

The corncob pipe was patented on this day in 1878. The Enigma key was broken in 1941. The first commercial helicopter passenger service was inaugurated in NYC in 1953.

Happy birthday, Elias Howe, inventor of the sewing machine, 1819. Tom Hanks is 48. Fred Savage is 28.

  1. If you switched to Mozilla or Firefox for better security, not so fast. The Mozilla Foundation has confirmed that there’s a bug in the programs that allows sites to execute arbitrary code in Windows without user intervention. There is a patch for “shell:” exploit – download it now. Mac and Linux users are unaffected.

  2. The Motion Picture Association of America continues to pump the hysteria, claiming that one in four Internet users has downloaded a pirated movie. Of those, 17% are spending less time at the theater. And in South Korea where broadband is nearly universal, 58% of users are downloading movies. According to the MPAA this “growing global epidemic” is costing the industry $3 billion a year.

    Samsung Yepp YH-999

  3. Amazon is taking orders for the first Portable Media Center devices now, even though they won’t ship for another month or two. The Creative Zen is $499 for 20GB of storage and will be available in August. The Samsung Yepp YH-999, with similar specs, ships in September.

Tune in tomorrow at 7:40a Eastern for my weekly visit with John Donabie on 1010 CFRB Toronto. And, of course, listen to my show every Saturday and Sunday, noon to 3p Pacific on KFI, Los Angeles.

28 Replies to “Friday’s Fact or Fiction”

  1. Regarding #2: Seeing as how I’ve dropped more money on movies in the last month than I did all of the previous 5, the MPAA can go take a flying leap. 🙂

  2. Hell, when did paranoia become big business? Well, I guess it’s been happening, but the RIAA and MPAA have taken it to sickeningly low levels. I’ve seen more movies in the last 3 months than I have all last year. Bastards.

  3. I am happy to say that I am in the 1/4 that does download movies. And since I’ve started to do so have also started to buy the DVD’s of the movies I really like. I have never spent a dime on movies prior to doing so.

  4. Heads up for those of us on 98 SE . . . the Mozilla/Firefox patch doesn’t affect us. According to the page Leo links to in Point No. 1 above, it’s only for ‘users of all Mozilla products on Windows XP’.

  5. I’ve never downloaded a movie, and haven’t been inside a movie theater in nearly 10 years. Movie tickets are overpriced in my opinion. I wait till the movie shows up on HBO/Showtime/Starz before I see it, then if I like it, I buy the DVD.

  6. I admit I’m being selfish, but Leo how are regular computer users supposed to know what to do without you? I’m not kidding. If I didn’t read your blog tonight, I’d be surfing the web, thinking I was safe, now that I’ve installed Firefox.
    I still can’t get over you being gone from TechTV. I’ll bet you that more computers will be infected, and people will not enjoy their computers as much as they did when you were on CFH and TSS.
    I miss you, my family and friends miss you (because I can’t help them as much any more because I don’t have the time to research and confirm my research to get their answers. I only trusted you. You never steered me wrong.)
    I truly wish you would consider a paid newsletter to answer X amount of questions per week. (I admit, I suggest that selfishly for myself and the others that I help.)

  7. Yea, thanks for the mozilla info. I just downloaded it thinking I was safe. And Firefox 9.2 does include the update.
    I’ve been to the movies once in the last four-five months, and that was to see Harry Potter. I prefer to actually rent movies, which I have been doing alot in those months. But I’ll watch it in theatres if it’s a movie I really want to see. So I do plan on seeing Spiderman this weekend.

  8. Another Windows exploit? Yippee skippy.
    As usual, I hope they get it plugged up fast… and boy am I glad I don’t have to worry about any of that garbage.
    Spyware, adware, viruses, trojans, browser exploits…. thankfully (so far) PC/Windows-Only. I’m gonna hug my Mac. I’m not trying to sound smug, I recently had to deal with all of the above on my stepdaughter’s PC laptop. I’d HATE to have to try to stay one step ahead of all that crap every day. It’s gotta be like trying to defend a hill with only “a stick and a garbage can lid” vs. “the invading horde” after a while. Ick.
    I wonder if Creative is going to pull a “Sony” and claim that their media player can hold “Dozens of movies!*”
    *encoded at 48kbps, 256 grays, mono 8-bit mono audio

  9. I work at a movie theater and the reason less people are coming is the movie quality is going way down and the prices of tickets, which is actually the work of the studios, when they say you won’t get the big ticket movies unless you charge more there really isn’t a choice.

  10. Thank you for the link to the patch for mozilla. I will install it as soon as possible. Thank you for the timely information.

  11. I usually don’t spend my hard-earned money visiting a movie theatre. The prices of movie tickets are sky-high. It used to be a bargain going to a matinee; that ticket price was under $3.00, but that type of ticket is now over six, and the regular admission after 6:00 PM is in the $9.00 range. When you factor in the price of popcorn, a drink, and a box of candy, the entry price for one person is $15.00-$20.00. I would rather wait to rent the film, pop my own popcorn, and have my own drink handy. If I really enjoy the film, I might consider purchasing it from the bargain table at Hollywood Video.
    Someone once told me that paying high prices for a movie theatre ticket is like paying high prices for gasoline. You have to pay for both…… Well, that may be true for gasoline, but I do have a choice when it comes to visiting a movie theatre.
    To paraphrase that line from Field of Dreams — “If you charge them more money, they will still come.”
    Las Vegas, Nevada

  12. I saw Fahrenheit 9/11 last weekend, and that was the first movie I saw in a theater in probably five years. I don’t download movies off the internet, either. I haven’t been to a theater in so long partly because of the high ticket prices, partly because of the high price of the concessions, and mostly because of the rude and obnoxious behavior of my fellow movie-goers. Between people talking out loud to each other during the movie to those who make and receive cell phone calls, watching a movie in a theater is almost impossible. I’ll wait for the movie to come out on DVD and watch it in the comfort and privcy of my own living room.

  13. CFRB Toronto brings music to my ears, my home
    Do enjoy your time in Toronto, great city, great restaurants.
    If you get a chance to do Winstons if it’s still there do so, Johnny who used to be the owner is a great guy.

  14. Regarding the Mozilla exploit: of course there’s going to be some security concerns. Nothing is perfect. And as the browser becomes more popular, more problems will be found.
    But this hardly even approximates the kind of dangers you risk using MSIE. And you have to hand it to the Mozilla team; the minute this was brought to their attention, this (temporary) patch was put out almost immediately. They’re making the effort to speedily correct such issues, whereas Explorer and Windows itself still suffer a number of flaws and holes that haven’t been addressed in god knows how long. So I’m still quite proud to have made the switch to Firefox, warts and all.

  15. If the movie industry is so worried about south korea then why don’t they do something about it there instead of bothering us here?

  16. About item #1: The following message popped up while trying to run that patch. “Firefox was not able to find any available updates.” (I have 0.9.2 Firefox) Another message was “Firefox encountered problems when trying to find updates for some items…No update for DOM Inspector.” Do you have any answers, Leo?

  17. Leo, My hubby & I miss you!! I for one am at a loss without your daily tidbits and aid such as on Call For Help. ~Annette~

  18. Hey Concept303:
    The reason Mozilla is better though is that those that download it will also be the ones that will, are more likely to think about the security of their browser and are more likely to patch it. However even if someone wanted to patch IE, sometimes the patch doesn’t even exist whereas browsers such as Mozilla and Opera make the necessary fixes as soon as they know of them. I really wish that Microsoft would step up to the plate and work a little harder on their security, instead of Gates saying that they are, though its obvious they’re not.

  19. Random thoughts:
    The MPAA can kiss my butt with their propaganda. I don’t go to the movies often due to Hollywood thinking the public needs to be dumbed down with a lot of their high grade swill.
    The Mozilla patch worked out well. Thanks for the tip.

  20. So the MPAA says 17% of people who download movies are going to the theater less. Doesn’t that mean 83% of them are going as much as they used to or even MORE?! Are they trying to give people who download reasons to do it now or what?

  21. I love downloading movies. It’s great.
    I don’t have to pay ridiculous prices, and I don’t have to deal with loud people, a bad seat, or having to get there on time.
    No crowds, I can pause, rewind, and adjust the volume.
    The MPAA and RIAA have been charging RIDICULOUS prices for the longest time, and thye keep charging more!
    I’ll be dead before I give them money for someting that should cost about 5-10% of what it does and sucks anyway.
    Another thing I hate about the theatres is the quality. It sucks! I really hate film noise, and I hate the cigarette burns in the top right. There are no digital theatres near me, and if there were they’d probably charge even more.
    I haven’t seen a really good movie in a LONG time.

  22. tried downloading the patch for mozilla nothing happened. Says I need to find a program to install it. Back to using IE I guess.

  23. Just a follow-up to my message above . . .
    Firefox 0.9.2 is out, and it may well be a bug fix. (At least that’s the opinion of one respondent to the article Leo linked to in Point No. 1.) Even though I’m running 98 SE, I’m downloading it anyway. On a dial-up. At 9 on a Friday night. I need a life. 🙂

  24. Well, it seems Mozilla is not perfect. The security flaws are NOT the problem but the people updating their systems. IIS is a perfect example with Code Red.
    IIS was patched a month ealier and some how it was a huge problem? Flaws don’t matter its the people that matter..
    When will everyone learn this?
    You have to have PEOPLE UPDATE…..end of story.

  25. Well, it seems Mozilla is not perfect. The security flaws are NOT the problem but the people updating their systems. IIS is a perfect example with Code Red.
    IIS was patched a month ealier and some how it was a huge problem? Flaws don’t matter its the people that matter..
    When will everyone learn this?
    You have to have PEOPLE UPDATE…..end of story.

  26. The Hollywood producers are not bright enough to notice that the highest grossing movie of last year was “…Nemo” and this year it will probably be “Shrek 2”. Movies that many, if not most of the tickets sold were at discounted children and/or matinee rates. These movies are also going to sell the most copies for home viewing. Their product is overpriced and these Producers are too stupid to understand that sometimes less is more.

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