Internet of Things

Report: Internet of Things Devices Have ‘Alarmingly High’ Number of Attack Vulnerabilities

Womp womp. (Facebook)

Thinking of outfitting your home with some snazzy smart devices? Perhaps it’s time to think again — and no, not just because those smart thermostats might not actually detect smoke.

After analyzing 10 of the most popular Internet of Things devices, HP found them to contain an “alarmingly high average number of vulnerabilities per device,” according to a recent report. The vulnerabilities, they wrote, “ranged from Heartbleed to Denial of Service to weak passwords to cross-site scripting.” Oh, joy. Read More

The Singularity is Nigh

Spark Nabs $4.9 Million to Turn Your Kitchen Into ‘The Brave Little Toaster’

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Most early attempts at Internet of Things (IoT) devices, like smart cutting boards and rudimentary wearables, haven’t proven their worth enough to become as important to us as our phones and laptops. But as of this morning, IoT startup Spark has raised $4.9 million to bring us smart objects that might actually be useful.

Until now, Spark has focused on selling home kits that let you take everyday objects like lightbulbs and cutting boards and hook them up with sensors and wifi. The new cash will help Spark move on from selling one-off DIY kits to providing thousands of cores for companies that want to use Spark to power IoT products. Read More

Demo Day

Energy-Tech Startup Competition Won By Another Taxi App

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For most utility companies, the most “disruption” they ever deal with is when a power grid is overloaded by everyone’s air conditioners. But this week, major utilities and power companies met with members of the local tech community to try and figure out how to bring good ol’ Silicon Alley innovation to the New York utility Read More

Planet Google

Google Wants To Bring Ads To a Thermostat Near You

Get ready to start seeing personalized ads here! (Facebook)

Not so breaking news: Google is taking over everything.

A letter to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that was disclosed yesterday revealed that Google may begin advertising and serving content on devices such as car dashboards, thermostats, refrigerators and of course Google Glass, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Google reportedly made the statement, originally filed in December, to explain why they don’t disclose revenue generated from mobile devices, despite the fact that other media giants like Facebook and Twitter do. Their explanation is that the definition of mobile will “continue to evolve” with the introduction of more “smart” devices. Read More

Internet of Things

Older Tech Giants Have Arrived For The ‘Internet Of Things’ Arms Race

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When people hear “Internet of Things,” their first inclination is to think of Google-owned talking thermostats. But it’s the less-buzzworthy global communications titans like Intel and Cisco who have been building up their portfolio of Internet of Things companies over the past few years — and they’re only getting started.

Intel recently bought up Basis Systems, which makes health tracking bands, and Cisco’s portfolio includes companies that put sensors in home utility meters and bicycles. These are companies that made their multinational empires building satellites and wireless networks — and now they want to develop consumer products that put sensors in alarm clocks, hearing aids and thermostats. Read More

Internet of Things

Nest Halts Sale of ‘Smart’ Smoke Detectors After Finding They Might Not Detect Smoke

A cartoon rendering of the Nest Protect smoke alarm. (Facebook)

Nest, the Google-owned company that makes smart smoke alarms and thermostats, is disabling a feature on its Nest Protect smoke alarms after realizing it could be dangerous in the event of a fire. They’re also halting sales of all new smoke alarms until the problem is fixed.

In a recent blog post, Nest Labs CEO Tony Fadell explained that Nest Wave — a feature that allows Nest Protect smoke alarm users to turn off their alarms by waving their hand — could pose great dangers in the event of a real fire. What if a user unintentionally waved her hand in front of her Nest Protect smoke alarm, just moments before a fire started in her home? Read More

Goooood Morning Silicon Alley!

Best Tech Events This Week (Advertising Week, Internet of Things Hackathon, Freestyle Fashion Conference, 3D Printing Summit, Startup Grind)

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This is a guest post from Gary Sharma (aka “The Guy with the Red Tie”), founder and CEO of GarysGuide and proud owner of a whole bunch of black suits, white shirts and, at last count, over 40 red ties. You can reach him at gary [at] garysguide.com.

Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act takes effect today. Are you ready?! And don’t forget, this week brings a ton of cool events at Advertising Week! :)

November 18 is OWASP AppSec USA, the biggest software security conference in New York City, bringing together global experts and folks from NYSE Euronext, Mozilla, Oracle and Etsy. It’ll include a capture-the-flag competition, career fair, training and much more! Read More