RAN Technology

Google gets stung for swiping content thanks to embedded morse code


General Information 0 Comments 06/17/2019 

Dah-dit hits crash dot-dash cash-bash

From The Inquirer:

GOOGLE HAS FALLEN for a sting which is said to have proved the firm is 'stealing' data from a rival website.

Genius.com, a site specialising in providing song lyrics, had suspected that Google had been scraping its site and using the lyrics to populate the 'information panels' often seen in the side of search results.

This isn't that uncommon, but usually Google credits the source; in this case, Genius was getting no credit.

But Genius wasn't going to take that lying down. The company wanted to prove that Google was indeed sourcing uncredited, and set about proving it by matching high tech with low tech.

By changing the punctuation is certain lyrics, swapping out straight and rounded quotes and commas, the firm was able to encode a morse code message to Google.

And the message was "R E D   H A N D E D".

Sure enough, Google pulled the lyric through and repeated the message, without ever knowing that's what it had done.

There are two issues here - the first is easy - is Google nicking content without proper credit? Well, that's pretty much beyond doubt based on this exercise. The second is more difficult - does Genius.com have a reason to complain? Well, that's a bit more complex.

For a start, Genius.com doesn't own the lyrics in the first place. Its entire site is based either of user-generated content or official lyrics swiped from elsewhere. Indeed for the first years of its life, it was Genius.com that was nicking stuff, before eventually going legit in the wake of criticism.

But from Google's side, this is an issue that could open a much bigger can of worms at a time when it is under increased scrutiny for anti-competitive actions. The more uncredited content it puts straight into its results, the fewer hits those sites get - meanwhile, Google earns another chunk from the adverts on its page.

In effect, the issue isn't whether the lyrics are stolen - the lucrative adverts are the real prize.


   Equipment manuals and handbooks of the 1950s and 60s were filled with complex oscilloscope screens and discussion of ripple and as a result proper alignment of a phasing rig eluded most hams.    But a clever New Zealand ham, Fred Johnson ZL2AMJ was able to see what everyone else had missed, and published a short note in the NZ ham magazine in 1972 that makes the process simple and r...  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (ranickels),  07/20/2019 
    Finding myself in need of a tool to remove a bad bearing on a blower from a linear amplifier I first tried the usual automotive type gear puller but it wasn't able to get underneath this small 5/8" OD bearing.   So I improvised a tool that took 10 minutes to make, cost a few cents, and had the job done in no time at allThe secret is wedges sold at the home improvement stor...  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (ranickels),  07/16/2019 
  

W9RAN Field Radio

Vintage light aircraft radios repurposed
Category: Technical
In the early days of aviation radio, transmissions originated from the ground using the longwave transmitter also used for homing,  and pilots acknowledged by wagging their wings.  It didn't take long to realize the benefits of having transmitting capability onboard the plane as well, and the first generation of aircraft radio used the low HF band.    Given today's...  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (ranickels),  05/11/2019 
   Watch the video  trailer for the 2019 monster movie that relies on a 1950s vintage Hammarlund SP-600 and Collins 30L-1 amplifier....  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (ranickels),  04/20/2019 
   I find the show-biz association of the founder of Allied Radio, Simon Wexler, to be rather fascinating.  What started out as a supplier of crystal set parts led to a family that became a major force in the entertainment industry and in Chicago business...including many recognizable names:"Allied Radio (now known as Allied Electronics) is a company with a long history. On August 6, 1...  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (ranickels),  04/14/2019 
  

Hazard E. Reeves - audio pioneer and defense contractor

Making crystals in midtown Manhattan during WWII
Category: Historic
 Hazard E. Reeves (1906-1986) may not be a household name, but his work is well known to every moviegoer.   He was an American pioneer in sound and sound electronics, and introduced stereophonic sound for motion pictures. He met Fred Waller at the 1939 World's Fair and saw the potential of Waller's "Vitarama" system which he invested in and which soon became the mo...  READ MORE
- BRADLEY STONE (NB9M),  04/12/2019 
    In his book "In Touch with Leo", the success and growing backlog of CB-100 orders is what drove Leo to his banker, Lou Ross, who asked him why he didn't anticipate the number of orders and required capital.  Leo responded "Lou, never on God's green earth could I have believed such an influx of orders!".    More funding was needed than the bank ...  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (ranickels),  03/18/2019 
  

Spectral Purity using Epson Programmable Oscillators

Do harmonics matter if there's no way for them to be heard?
Category: Crystal Replacement
 In the 5 or so years I've been using the Epson oscillators I've looked at the spectral output many times.   Without a doubt the harmonic output from the Epson oscillator is high as would be expected  from a square wave device.   The question to me has always been "does it matter"?PLL controlled digital oscillators have long been used as LOs in recei...  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (ranickels),  03/12/2019 
  

The Foxhole Radio

aka "Razor Blade and Safety Pin Radio"...from the Boy's Fun Book
Category: Vintage Radio
 When I was a kid, my dad gave me a thin hardcover book called "Boys Fun Book - Things to Make and Do".   It was printed during WWII on very thin paper as a wartime conservation measure, but was chock-full of interesting projects, ranging from hobbies and magic tricks to sports, puzzles, camping...and the chapter I was drawn to:  "Unusual Radios You Can Build You...  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (ranickels),  03/08/2019 
   As anyone who likes building radios knows, it's getting harder and harder to buy RF components.   One of the last casualties was the 3-section pi-wound RF chokes made by Hammond, a company that has done more than most to support the vintage radio and audio hobbies.    The Toko variable inductors long favored by QRP enthuisiasts have become all but unavailable, and vari...  READ MORE
- Robert Nickels (ranickels),  03/02/2019 

VIEW News Item

Making A Transistor Radio

in memory of Rev. George Dobbs G3RJV (SK)
VIEW News Item

Take the Boatanchor Survey!

Let authors and organizers know what you're interested in
VIEW News Item

W9RAN's "VERSA-TR" (as featured in Dec. 2018 QST)

A Versatile T/R solution for SDRs and vintage radios
VIEW News Item

MICROPHONIA! is here

Cool mics from my collection and ones I wish were
VIEW News Item

Mike Beachy N8ECR - SK

"If there's a ham radio heaven, they've got a hell of a net control operator"

(There are currently no Blogs.)