Bite Sized News: An Update on Heartbleed and Scent Emails

Bite Sized News: An Update on Heartbleed and Scent Emails
By Mitali Bellamkonda

 
Heartbleed

Now, I know you all have heard of Heartbleed. As a reminder, it’s a system vulnerability that can leak passwords and other sensitive information to whoever wants it. It was built into the OpenSSL framework and numerous sites and servers scrambled to get it patched up.
 

 
However, not everyone has patched it up yet. There are still over 300,000 servers and sites still haven’t been patched up. So, if you’re running OpenSSL and haven’t patched it up yet, you should probably get on that. And if you’re a user, you should check if your site has been patched up or just change all of your passwords and keep them different for each account you have.

Scent Emails

Now, in some bizarre, but cool news last week, scientists have discovered how to send smells over the Internet. Why anyone would want to send smells over the Internet is a question that the scientists probably haven’t asked. Maybe it could be used in international investigations? Anyway, they must have done it for the sake of science.

The first scents to be sent this way were the smells of champagne and macaroons. They went from New York to Paris and was a test of a new scent messaging platform/app created by Rachel Field and David Edwards. For a very through explanation of how the system works, the video on NBC news is worth watching. For the rest of us, here is a brief explanation.

    1. -Take a picture with the OSnap app, which is currently available on iTunes.
    2. -Break the item down into its various scents
    3. -Send
    4. -When the ONote is received, a person taps the picture and the scents are smelled on the accompanying device, known as the Ophone.

    The company hasn’t started mass producing the Ophones yet, but for anyone in New York who wants to try this out, the American Museum of Natural History is hosting an Ophone hotspot for anyone who wants to receive or send an ONote.

    I’m not quite sure what practical applications this technology has for the future, but it’s pretty cool.

    Follow me

    Mitali Bellamkonda

    Mitali Bellamkonda is a twenty-one year old linguistics graduate from the University of Maryland, College Park. She has been blogging for three years and has blogged for companies such as KikScore. You can find her on twitter at @bellmit. She also has a fandom tumblr, but there be dragons there.
    Follow me

    Latest posts by Mitali Bellamkonda (see all)

Pinterest