Another day in a classroom. Today we a couple of hours at HQ and then cross the street for airplane systems knowledge. Microblogvember

I need more coffee. ☕️☕️☕️

I didn’t have to get mean while driving this morning. This is a fancy key note that hits the mark for learning. (Trying to catch up with Microblogvember)

looks at watch after another hour Definitely time to go to bed

Now that I’ve spent about 1.5 hours messing with the CSS, it’s time for bed.

Modifying the CSS wasn’t as bad as I thought. It’s still a work in progress but I’m happy with the changes so far. Baby steps.

iOS 13.2 is one of the worst iOS updates I’ve seen in a long time. I think the RAM management issue that causes apps to reload all the time is also causing my iPhone 11 to cycle Bluetooth on and off at random time when my AirPods are connected. I’m not talking AirPods to simply disconnect and reconnect, I’m talking watching Bluetooth turn itself off and back on in Control Center without me touching or doing anything.

Gonna try my hand at modifying the CSS for my site over the next few days. Wish me luck.

I love my second-gen AirPods but I am tempted to get a pair of AirPods Pro.

I used Animoji while FaceTiming my kids last night and they loved it.

Telluride, Colorado

Denver, Colorado Sunrise

Somewhere over Western Mexico enroute from Cabo San Lucas to El Paso, Texas

A different view of my “office”

Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

Santa Catalina Island

Lamborghini Urus and Ferrari Portofino

LAX (Los Angeles, California)

Company Headquarters

Our 🐔 and our 🐔 coop

Nice view along the Tar River in Greenville, North Carolina

Biometric Security

This article about a “flaw” in the Samsung Galaxy S10 in-screen fingerprint reader is nothing but click-bait that I probably shouldn’t be linking to but it got me thinking about so-called biometric security “flaws.”

Samsung: Anyone’s thumbprint can unlock Galaxy S10 phone

This is the BBC article headline, and like all the others I’ve seen reporting the issue, make it sound like a widespread, serious flaw where anybody could pick up anybody’s S10 and unlock it, which I do not believe is the case.

A flaw that means any fingerprint can unlock a Galaxy S10 phone has been acknowledged by Samsung. It promised a software patch that would fix the problem.

I believe this “flaw” is an isolated issue with the specific model of screen protector that the person mentioned in the article was using. If this was a widespread issue with all screen protectors, we wouldn’t first be hearing about it seven months after the phone launched. If I’m wrong and it is a widespread issue affecting all screen protectors, then yeah, then this is a very serious flaw that Samsung should have caught well before now.

Whether this is an isolated incident that got blown out of proportion or a larger issue that went unnoticed until now, I am glad that Samsung is taking it seriously and plans to correct the issue.

BBC’s News Technology Reporter, Chris Fox writes about problematic Google Pixel 4 facial recognition: 1

Google has confirmed the Pixel 4 smartphone’s Face Unlock system can allow access to a person’s device even if they have their eyes closed.

One security expert said it was a significant problem that could allow unauthorised access to the device.

By comparison, Apple’s Face ID system checks the user is “alert” and looking at the phone before unlocking.

This article is click-bait that does nothing more than scare people about biometric authentication. It is curious, and a little troubling, that Google isn’t including any sort of attention awareness setting in the shipping version of Android 10, at least according to the article.2 The article mentions a statement from Google but doesn’t include the statement or directly quote the statement, except for a single sentence at the very end of the article: “We will continue to improve Face Unlock over time.”

Yes, iPhones and iPads with FaceID have attention awareness turned on by default but turn it off and they will behave the same way as the Pixel 4. I have attention awareness turned off on my iPhone 11 because my sunglasses prevent the True Depth camera from seeing my eyes. They are not polarized sunglasses but have dark tinted glass lenses. I did not hesitate in turning attention awareness off because 1. FaceID is still secure with attention awareness turned off, and 2. I trust my wife and kids not to do anything nefarious with my phone when I’m sleeping.

“If someone can unlock your phone while you’re asleep, it’s a big security problem,” said cyber-security expert Graham Cluley. “Someone unauthorised - a child or partner? - could unlock the phone without your permission by putting it in front of your face while you’re asleep,” he told BBC News.

I laughed at the security expert’s statement. This is not a “big security problem” or flaw with the Pixel 4, or any iPhone or iPad with FaceID. It is not a “big security problem” with devices that have a fingerprint scanner where someone just has to place your finger on the scanner to unlock your device. This is one of the security vs. convenience trade offs we make with any sort of authentication, biometric or otherwise, on our devices. We take the convenience of not typing our device passcode 3 every time we unlock our device and trade a very, very, little microscopic piece of security. The same could be said of people using a 4 or 6 digit or character passcode instead of a 25 digit or character passcode.

We need to be able to trust in the authentication methods we use on our devices, and any real flaw in those methods needs to be fixed but these blown out of proportion, click-bait articles are not helpful in any way.

  1. I promise this is not a bash the BBC post. [return]
  2. “Google fixes major flaw with Pixel 4 face unlock” will be the headline when or if attention awareness is added. [return]
  3. Or App Store password, password manager password, etc. [return]

Chicago O’Hare is a big airport but it’s hard to realize how big it is until you see it from the air.

It’s a work in progress but my site is dark mode enabled, and should switch automatically based on your device theme. Many thanks to andynicolaides and his post, and chet for his help with changing the color of some objects. I’ll do a more thorough post when I’m done.

Refreshed in the Wind

I have always enjoyed watching airplanes take off and land, and fly overhead. As a kid, whenever we drove past an airport I remember looking as hard as I could in the hopes I would see an airplane, even if I knew I wouldn’t see one.1 I can remember my dad stopping on the side of the road to let me watch a plane take off or land. My son is the same way I was as a kid, and yes, I have stopped the car to let him watch an airplane. Why do we do this? I was reminded earlier of a quote from one of my favorite books that I think perfectly describes why.

“”…Here, refreshed in the wind, I rediscover what I had previously held to be certain truths. I again become aware that no pilot alive can resist watching a plane take off or land. He may pass a motionless airplane without noticing it, but the moment his ears detect the first burst of power from a plane, however distant, he will turn his head regardless of everything else around him and watch it. “He will also rudely break off in the middle of a conversation to watch a plane landing, though there may be a constant flow of them. From observance of such activity he enjoys an abiding satisfaction, as basic and everlasting as that found by a deep-sea sailor on his obligatory pilgrimage to the nearest harbor…“” — Ernest Gann in Fate Is The Hunter

The “refreshed in the wind” line has always stuck with me, because of a feeling I sometimes get at airports when the wind is just right. It is a feeling of calm and peace, and it is in those times that I’m even more grateful that I am able to do what I love. I don’t know why I get this feeling when the wind is a certain way, I just do. I get this feeling the strongest on clear days, when the temperature is around 75 to 80°F, and the wind is about 5 to 10 knots. When I get this feeling all I want to do is stop and watch the airplanes take off and land, and simply take in the sights, sounds, smells, and as crazy as it may sound to some, the beauty of the airport. As stressful as my job can get, it is in these times that I am refreshed in the wind, and that I can’t imagine doing anything else.

  1. Who am I kidding, I still do it as an adult. [return]