This week’s New York Times Tech Talk podcast takes a look at a new target for hackers: the car. Bettina Edelstein speaks to John Markoff, a Times reporter who has written about how vulnerable automotive computer systems are to malicious attacks. Computer security experts from the University of California, San Diego, and the University of Washington, backed by the National Science Foundation, were able to remotely take over car brakes and other critical controls. With modern vehicles increasingly dependent on computers, the researchers say, it’s important to address these issues before they become a problem.
J.D. Biersdorfer talks to Bryce Johnson, creator of CafeScribe.com, a digital textbook marketplace and social networking site. CafeScribe lets students form virtual study groups and share notes on CafeScribe digital textbooks. The site and its textbook reading application, MyScribe, is a division of Follett, a major distributor of textbooks and operator of college bookstores.
Pedro Rafael Rosado reviews two portable speaker systems from OrigAudio: the cardboard Fold n Play speakers and the Rock-It, which turns almost any object into a speaker. He shows how it works with a box, a chair and a computer monitor.
Ms. Biersdorfer’s tip of the week, for Windows 7 users, is about jump lists, which let you easily find files you may want at hand. And her news roundup includes a new tablet from Dell called the Streak, more hints of a new iPhone model on the way and a farewell to the Phoenix Mars Lander.
To find more information about the podcast and the links to the show’s topics, go to the Tech Talk page.