‘The Platform’ offers a gruesome metaphor for capitalism – TechCrunch

“The Platform” is not a subtle movie.

That’s true of its approach to horror, with intense, bloody scenes that prompted plenty of screaming and pausing from your hosts at the Original Content podcast. It’s also true of its thematic material — right around the time one of the characters accuses another of being communist, you’ll slap yourself on the forehead and say, “Oh, it’s about capitalism.”

The new Netflix film takes place in a mysterious prison, with two prisoners on each level (they’re randomly rotated each month). Once each day, a platform laden with delicious food is lowered through the prison. If you’re on one of the top levels, you feast. If you’re further down, things are considerably more grim, and can become downright gruesome as the month wears on.

“The Platform” is a hard movie to sit through, and it has other faults, like an irritatingly mystical

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Zoom admits some calls were routed through China by mistake – TechCrunch

Hours after security researchers at Citizen Lab reported that some Zoom calls were routed through China, the video conferencing platform has offered an apology and a partial explanation.

To recap, Zoom has faced a barrage of headlines this week over its security policies and privacy practices, as hundreds of millions forced to work from home during the coronavirus pandemic still need to communicate with each other.

The latest findings landed earlier today when Citizen Lab researchers said that some calls made in North America were routed through China — as were the encryption keys used to secure those calls. But as was noted this week, Zoom isn’t end-to-end encrypted at all, despite the company’s earlier claims, meaning that Zoom controls the encryption keys and can therefore access the contents of its customers’ calls. Zoom said in an earlier blog post that it has “implemented robust and validated internal controls

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How to make open source success less of a crapshoot

Commentary: It’s hard to know which open source projects will take off, but it’s easy to guess which ones won’t, and why.

Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto

It’s almost certain you’re not going to use Senator Elizabeth Warren’s (now open source) campaign tools. Nor will you be submitting a pull request on Microsoft’s open sourced Windows calculator. And you’re definitely not going to be using Medtronic’s “open source” ventilator.

This, however, isn’t really the point. While it’s never good practice to just dump code onto GitHub, slap an open source license on it, and walk away, it’s also hard to predict exactly how code will get used. The best thing a person or organization that wants to open source code can do, therefore, is simply to make it usable for would-be adopters.

SEE: How to build a successful developer career (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

Utility is in the eye of

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Front-end frameworks are about to get even cooler, says Google lead

Commentary: Front-end frameworks keep getting better, but progressive delivery just might be the best thing to hit in 2020.

Image: C.Y.Ronnie.W, Getty Images/iStockphoto

VCs have been dumping cash into back-end developer technologies, but front-end development is increasingly what’s cool. How cool? In an interview with Nicole Sullivan, Google’s frameworks lead, developers love frameworks like Next.js because they allow developers to “spend more time building features and less time setting up infrastructure.” In 2020, things will heat up that much more with new functionality like progressive delivery of features.

SEE: How to build a successful developer career (free PDF) (TechRepublic) 

Making frameworks better

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Sullivan is in a good position to know what’s hot (and what’s not) in frameworks, given her perch at Google. So when she says that she’s “most excited [about] progressive delivery of features,” it’s worth digging in to figure out what this means. Progressive

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How to prevent Zoom bombing: 5 simple tips

Internet trolls are crashing Zoom video conferences and flooding them with inappropriate content. Here are easy ways to protect your meetings from Zoom bombers.

Video conferencing app Zoom has had a meteoric rise in users due to the coronavirus outbreak, and with that rise in users has come security woes and an annoying new trend known as “Zoom bombing.” Zoom bombing is, in essence, crashing a digital meeting and doing things like screaming obscenities, broadcasting pornography, and otherwise interrupting people’s attempts to talk to coworkers, family, and friends. It isn’t necessarily harmful, but it’s definitely obnoxious.

Even with all of Zoom’s security issues, it can’t be blamed entirely for the Zoom bombing trend–internet trolls have been using publicly posted meeting links, guessing meeting IDs, and using personal meeting IDs posted online as ways to join meetings uninvited. 

SEE: The tech pro’s guide to video conferencing (TechRepublic download)


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Digital gamer guide: 10 tips to help new online players

To the uninitiated, online gaming may be slightly intimidating and a bit confusing. We can relieve those lingering trepidations with this set of practical tips for new players.

Image: iStockphoto/gorodenkoff

According to a recent study published by Gismart, the number of active users of apps and games has increased by 200% since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. Even the World Health Organization has launched a campaign to encourage people living under stay at home restrictions to participate in digital game play. These are truly unprecedented times.

The joys and benefits of playing digital games are well known to those of us who engage in the activity on a regular basis, but those of you with less gaming experience, particularly online gaming experience, may be a little confused and slightly intimidated by the prospect. To be certain, online gaming has a reputation for being a little rough on

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