Thursday News: i0S vulnerability fixed, how we read, when the present becomes the past, and Suicide Squad trailer quiz
iOS cookie theft bug allowed hackers to impersonate users – If you’re running iOS, make sure you’re running 9.2.1, which fixed a pernicious bug that Apple was informed of way back in 2013. Security company Skycure blogged about the vulnerability, noting that it could
- Steal users’ (HTTP) cookies associated with a site of the attacker’s choice. By doing so, the attacker can then impersonate the victim’s identity on the chosen site.
- Perform a session fixation attack, logging the user into an account controlled by the attacker–because of the shared Cookie Store, when the victims browse to the affected website via Mobile Safari, they will be logged into the attacker’s account instead of their own.
The Deep Space of Digital Reading – A very interesting piece by Paul La Farge on the idea that some of the criticisms lodged against digital (that it’s distracting, for example), are also applicable to paper. He goes on to suggest (I’m simplifying drastically here) that digital spaces are being utilized for novel projects like games that also use narratives in different ways, arguing that digital and paper present opportunities and challenges that make them distinct but not opposed.
There’s no question that digital technology presents challenges to the reading brain, but, seen from a historical perspective, these look like differences of degree, rather than of kind. To the extent that digital reading represents something new, its potential cuts both ways. Done badly (which is to say, done cynically), the Internet reduces us to mindless clickers, racing numbly to the bottom of a bottomless feed; but done well, it has the potential to expand and augment the very contemplative space that we have prized in ourselves ever since we learned to read without moving our lips. . . .
It’s true that studies have found that readers given text on a screen do worse on recall and comprehension tests than readers given the same text on paper. But a 2011 study by the cognitive scientists Rakefet Ackerman and Morris Goldsmith suggests that this may be a function less of the intrinsic nature of digital devices than of the expectations that readers bring to them. Ackerman and Goldsmith note that readers perceive paper as being better suited for “effortful learning,” whereas the screen is perceived as being suited for “fast and shallow reading of short texts such as news, e-mails, and forum notes.” They tested the hypothesis that our reading habits follow from this perception, and found it to be correct: Students asked to read a text on-screen thought they could do it faster than students asked to read the same text in print, and did a worse job of pacing themselves in a timed study period. Not surprisingly, the on-screen readers then scored worse on a reading comprehension test. – Nautilus
Chuck Klosterman Is Writing a Book About the Possibility of Us Being Wrong About, Well, Everything – I wish this piece were longer and more in depth, and I realize that it’s still book promo, but Chuck Klosterman’s upcoming book on what will be remembered about our present reality in even 50 years brings up some very interesting questions. As Klosterman notes, we are very present-focused and have “certitude” about what we believe to be true. So what happens when we look at how the world will look in 100, 200, or even 500 years from now? What will become of many of the novels and authors we feel are completely over or under-rated? What about publishing in general and our conflicts over different reading technologies?
[Klosterman] spoke to Richard Linklater about dreams, once considered the most important window into the human psyche. He spoke to Neil deGrasse Tyson and Brian Greene about the possibility of our basic understanding of gravity being overturned one day, as Aristotle’s was. And he looked at the changing reputations of various authors in an attempt to understand what makes literature get “remembered.” As Klosterman put it to us, “Could the most famous American novelist of this period be completely unknown, in the case of Kafka, or known but not respected, like Melville?” – Vulture
Suicide Squad Official Trailer #1 (2016) – Jared Leto, Margot Robbie Movie HD – Pop Quiz: Which Romance author’s book (and which book) is featured in this trailer?