The big stories on ZDNet this week: August 30, 2013

We take a look back at some of the major stories that broke August 26-30 — including Steve Ballmer's retirement aftermath, VMworld, the Twitter 'hack,' software patents, and more.
By Zack Whittaker, Contributor
1 of 15 CNET

Who will replace Steve Ballmer when he leaves Microsoft?

Microsoft's new CEO will be like an NFL coach taking over a 10-6 team, says ZDNet's Larry Dignan. You either win a championship or you fail. Simply put, Microsoft isn't screwed up enough to make the new chief look like a hero. 

Read more: Microsoft's new CEO will have tougher road than Ballmer

Related: Microsoft's Ballmer on his biggest regret, the next CEO and more | Microsoft's Ballmer: Why Microsoft doesn't want to be IBM (or Apple) and more

2 of 15 CNET

Feds point the finger at Android security threats

Amid ongoing U.S. government mass surveillance claims, Homeland Security and the FBI are more aware than ever of its use of the Android platform, and the vulnerabilities that go with it.

Read more: Millions of Android users vulnerable to security threats, say feds

Related: What's still wrong with Android (and right with iOS) | Android app malware rates jump 40 percent

3 of 15 Jason Hiner/Twitter

ZDNet at VMworld 2013: Long live the data center?

4 of 15 CNET

Facebook releases U.S. government data request figures

The U.S. government makes 12,000 data requests to Facebook during the first half of 2013 alone. Some of the other nations that stood out on the list with data requests in the thousands included France, Italy, India, Germany, and the U.K.

Read more: Facebook: U.S. gov't made close to 12,000 data requests during first half of 2013

Related: How Snowden got the NSA documentsNSA said to have paid 'millions' to cover costs for tech giants in PRISM program

5 of 15 Zack Whittaker/ZDNET

Debate: Is there a real market in wearable tech?

If you thought Google Glass was the "future" of wearable tech, think again. From e-tattoos to 3D printed clothes, ZDNet explores what we could be wearing in the very near future.

Read more: Mankind to machine: 13 computing devices you'll be wearing in the future

Related: ZDNet Great Debate: Wearable computing: Is there a real market? | Broadcom CEO predicts a crowded market soon for wearable tech

6 of 15 Zack Whittaker/ZDNET

Twitter, New York Times suffer 'malicious external attack'

According to the New York-based newspaper, the outage was the result of a "malicious external attack." Twitter also experienced significant problems, with multiple reports still making it through to the front of the microblogging site saying that the Syrian Electronic Army has taken control of the social network.

Read more: Latest New York Times outage due to 'malicious external attack'

Related: How the Syrian Electronic Army took out the New York Times and Twitter sitesHackers take down Melbourne IT site, following Twitter, New York Times attack

Screenshot: New York Times/ZDNet

7 of 15 Zack Whittaker/ZDNET

New Zealand bans software patents

New Zealand has finally passed a new Patents Bill this week that will effectively outlaw software patents after five years of debate, delay, and intense lobbying from multinational software vendors. The Patents Bill was first drafted in 2008. In 2010, the New Zealand Commerce Select Committee recommended a total ban on software patents. 

Read more: New Zealand bans software patents

Related: Developers: help fix our convoluted patent system | No patents is a no brainer for New Zealand

Image via U.S. Patents and Trademark Office

8 of 15 AlgoTrim; Apple

Apple buys codec and compression algorithm maker AlgoTrim

The Sweden-based company develops compression algorithms for imaging, video and firmware that help optimise memory handling, execution performance, and ultimately extend battery life on mobile devices. But what does Apple want it for?

Read more: Apple buys Swedish compression firm AlgoTrim

Related: Is Sweden the best place to start your start-up? | Apple buys big data firm Locationary in mapping effort push | Apple said to be recharting Maps with HopStop buy

9 of 15 CNET; Microsoft

Microsoft v. Google over YouTube on Windows Phone

The Google/Microsoft YouTube dispute tells you more about the way software for the mobile Internet is being developed than you might have thought. ZDNet's Simon Bisson explains the Silicon Valley squabble.

Read more: What Microsoft and Google's YouTube row says about the future of web development

Related: Why is Google blocking the new YouTube app for Windows Phone? | There's nothing wrong with Google blocking Microsoft's YouTube app

10 of 15 Zack Whittaker/ZDNET

France probes Internet firms for alleged PRISM involvement

France has launched a probe into whether Internet companies violated domestic privacy laws by participating in PRISM, following complaints filed with the Paris prosecutor's office earlier that month filed by two human rights groups.

Read more: France investigates role of internet companies in PRISM

Related: Prism heats up simmering tensions between US and Europe over privacy | Amid NSA spying scandal, the gloves are off for EU's justice chief 

Image via DeviantArt

11 of 15 Zack Whittaker/ZDNET

U.K. networks begin 4G network switch-on

Londoners can now take their pick of three LTE networks from today, with all 4G operators, now including Vodafone and O2, pledging to extend coverage in the near future. 

Read more: Vodafone and O2 switch on UK 4G networks

Related: Huawei plans 5G network launch by 2020, 100 times faster than 4G | SFR launches 4G in Paris, as Bouygues Telecom unveils LTE tariffs

Image via Twitter

12 of 15 Zack Whittaker/ZDNET

New NSA leaks reveal U.S. intelligence "black budget"

The NSA is just one cog out of a much larger intelligence machine, according to new documents, which outline and detail what the U.S. government spends out of the taxpayer's pocket on data collection and domestic and foreign surveillance efforts.

Read more: New leaked documents detail secret U.S. intelligence 'black budget' figures

Related: Don't let paranoia over the NSA and TPM weaken your securityNSA: fear of a black van | NSA hunger demands 29 petabytes of data a day

Image via Washington Post

13 of 15 CNET

Windows XP 'custom' security patches: It's not a panacea

Who is still running Windows XP and why? If you're not a large customer with a Premier Support contract, don't count on custom security patches after April 2014., says ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley. 

Read more: Microsoft's 'custom' Windows XP patches: Not a panacea

Related: Your perilous future on Windows XP | Microsoft warns Windows XP users risk 'zero day forever' | Hackers cash in on Windows XP retirement, exploit kit prices to surge?

14 of 15 CNET

After WIMM Labs acquisition, Google smartwatch on deck?

"The wearables war is officially on," writes ZDNet's Rachel King. With the explorer version of Google Glass well out the door, the Internet giant hinted through its recent WIMM Labs acquisition that it is moving on to a smartwatch.

Read more: Google smartwatch expected following WIMM Labs acquisition

Related: Google Maps, Offers and the big wearable technology picture | Samsung will unveil Galaxy Gear smartwatch next week | The problems with the smartwatch even Apple can't solve

15 of 15 Apple

Apple launches iPhone trade-in program

Apple wakes up, yawns, and remembers it has an iPhone on deck in the next few weeks, amid the anticipation and buzz for a new iPhone generation is reaching a boiling point. According to reports, the trade-in program is all set to launch on August 30.

Read more: New iPhones for old? Apple launches trade-in program

Related: 15 most wanted features in the next iPhone | Big iPhone event Sept. 10 with small expectations

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