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Dear readers,

calling an entity independent always means to keep the little power you own to yourself. It will never pay out for you in the end to surrender to yourself, a partner, a family, or, in the case of Facebook, to a dubious mega corporation which doesn’t give a shit about privacy and security, turning human beings into products and earns shitload of money in selling your personal data via advertising. That’s also why AETHYX MEDIAE never held a Facebook or Twitter account.

However, two billion and 130 million people (March 2018) on this planet already surrendered. Which represents 30% of humanity, ignoring age and nationality as well. These 30% literally are owned by Facebook. They gave away their interests, their social circles, their privacy and much more, to be exploited on a daily basis and provided a simple stupid feed, a neverending stream, with stuff they shouldn’t bother. This is the bad state in which we are now in 2018: social network addicts anywhere on this planet, earning nothing for providing personal data and being tricked year by year in spending more and more of their precious time inside a closed centralised web application which is designed in a way to be enhanced by the behaviour of its users only to be more addictive in the near future (keyword A/B testing).

Time for a little hope, won’t you agree?

Thanks to the Cambridge Analytica data scandal which popped up the last weeks, where 51.300.000 Facebook users were exploited illegally by a far-right data analytics company from the UK, the public finally recognises how dangerous Facebook really is. Horrible suspicions arose from these accusations: not only were voters in the US manipulated by targeted advertising created by this data but also in the UK while the “Brexit” polls took place.

Humans in the current mental state won’t change without being hit hard by a stick, so it seems.

By the way, the NSA scandal made public by another whistleblower, Edward Snowden, is not even four years away. Already 2014 people who seemed to be awake showed what alternatives we could use instead of data monstrosities like Facebook. Here is a neat screenshot of alternatives in case you forgot:

social network alternatives by prism-break.org

By clicking on this image you will reach the overview with working links to these systems directly.

What we need urgently right now are more decentralised applications run by smaller companies and individuals. Most of these systems provide features you never heard of which are incredibly useful in enhancing, not castrating, your digital life. Interconnections between systems is also possible, something Facebook completely forbids and tries to control with their half-hearted APIs. Furthermore, these social network alternatives are so sophisticated these days, you’ll be surprised about all the eye-candy and stability. There simply are no reasons anymore to join Facebook today. You see: where is the problem in switching?

In case you need help in setting up one of these social hubs just drop us a line: info@aethyx.eu. We won’t charge a cent if you’re aged 16 or below.

What you need to understand here: you can’t change the world but yourself. Time to start already.

Warmly,
the aethyx staff

“Free your mind. And your friends will follow.”

Dear readers,

to people under 30 this may sound strange, but we released our first paperback books at the end of 2017.

As a young and independent (online) publishing house, AETHYX MEDIAE usually doesn’t support vintage stuff. Except, in this case:

The Cipha.net Chronicles I The Cipha.net Chronicles II The Cipha.net Chronicles III
cnc1 cover cnc2 cover cnc3 cover
584 pages 414 pages 457 pages
109$ 99$ 99$
Amazon KDP Amazon KDP Amazon KDP
The Cipha.net Chronicles IV The Cipha.net Chronicles V The Cipha.net Chronicles VI
cnc4 cover cnc5 cover cnc6 cover
465 pages 485 pages 543 pages
99$ 99$ 99$
Amazon KDP Amazon KDP Amazon KDP

Features:

* colour interior on white paper
* glossy cover
* size 17 x 2,8 x 24,4 cm

As you may have noticed, we used Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing in this case. This was a logical step as we were there already with our Ebooks. For the future, maybe this year, we want to give CreateSpace a chance too.

One thing about the price and for more transparency: producing a weblog in book form is incredibly pricey yet. Let’s take The Cipha.net Chronicles III as an example.

The price tag of 99$ may seem heavy but Amazon takes 33$ for the printing cost alone. Distributing it to seven markets costs us another 39,44$. If we sell one copy here, we earn ca. 27 bucks. Which may sound like a joke with this price tag but that’s the harsh reality.

We will see what lies ahead of us in this field and we can’t promise to do more paperpacks but look forward to it.

Enjoy reading!

Yours truly,
the aethyx staff

Unfortunately, the year 2018 starts with CPU hardware bugs of the century:

Meltdown & Spectre logo: CC0 Natascha Eibl
Meltdown & Spectre logo: CC0 Natascha Eibl

In IT security circles these CPU bugs are known as CVE-2017-5754 (Meltdown), CVE-2017-5753 (Spectre Variant 1) and CVE-2017-5715 (Spectre Variant 2).

What does this mean for the CPU users out there? Well:

  • all Intel CPUs made since 1995 are affected of all of the three mentioned CPU hardware bugs
  • some AMD CPUs are vulnerable to Spectre Variant 2, but not to Variant 1 & never to Meltdown
  • IBM didn’t mention which PowerPC CPUs are affected. All systems running PowerPC7 and up will be patched in February. All CPUs below PowerPC7 should be vulnerable
  • ARM CPUs are also affected. Unfortunately Qualcomm didn’t release a list yet which Snapdragon Smartphone CPUs are affected against what. Raspberry Pis aren’t affected

The bugs were known to Intel at least since summer 2017 thanks to the Google Project Zero Project. Another team from Austria, Graz, discovered the same bugs in November/December 2017. Between Intel and Google there was an agreement to keep the vulnerabilities secret. This secret was broken and made public by the British website “The Register” on the 2nd of January 2018. Most of the confirmations came from the programmers working on the Linux kernel, their communication is public. They had to work over the holidays and couldn’t enjoy Christmas and New Years Eve. Thus, the Linux kernel is not vulnerable to Meltdown anymore since kernel version 4.14.x since the first week of January 2018.

Concerning Spectre, both variants; currently it could be these fixes won’t work. There is a proposal from the Google team called RETPOLINE, but so far these didn’t make it into the Linux kernel nor into Windows updates or MacOS updates. The other proposal from Intel side was “straight bullshit” according to Linus Torvalds. From what is known today, Spectre will be an IT security problem for at least months to come. Due to the fact this is a hardware bug, it’s almost impossible to fix this from a software side. For real, the only workaround with which you’re safe right now is: change your CPU. Cheers!

Why should you bother?

The problem isn’t really the local machine you’re working with: Meltdown and especially Spectre are incredibly hard to exploit even for skilled hackers. The problem is what kind of data is residing on a server. Whether it be your Emails, your visited websites, your bank account details, your photos of your loved ones, your social media profiles; with the accurate technique all of this data can be stolen without a trace 100% from Intel machines. And according to recent statistics these CPUs run ~70% of the Internet today. All operating systems (Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android, iOS, etc.) are affected anyway. As mentioned before, this is a hardware bug. Usually, hardware bugs are in no way fixable with software patches.

To make things worse and to give you an example of bad morale and integrity, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich sold 250,000 shares of his Intel stocks at the end of 2017. He knew what would lie ahead for him and his rotten company but didn’t think a bit about his customers. This is truly the f***ed up world in which we’re living right now. We hope you can deal with these facts and keep on.

We’re active in the IT sector since 2000 but never experienced anything similar severe to these bad news. Of course we knew that Intel is ahead of the pack regarding bad design and bad behaviour regarding computer processors. What we didn’t know was that Intel didn’t change at all. Since the marketing campaign for the i3/5/7 processors anyone thought they learned from their mistakes. Apparently they didn’t. Which makes Intel probably the most dangerous company in the whole wide world.

Never forget to update your computer in 2018. Good luck to y’all!

Sincerely,
the aethyx staff

“Over-specialisation means that there are more persistent vulnerabilities too. A deadly threat.” – “Ghost in the Shell”, Japan, 1995

Happy New Year 2018

Dear readers,

Christmas is over already and we hope you had a wonderful time with your loved ones!

2017 is gone now. As always, it was a difficult yet surprising year. Nevertheless it’s now the right time to look forward what lies ahead and the things to come!

We wish all of our precious readers, authors, clients & fans a Happy New Year!

May health, luck & satisfaction be with all of you.

Only the bestest,

the aethyx staff

Dear readers,

we still believe in free speech.

Though times get harder every day for those who want to find a voice for their opinion.

Thus, we created an Email post box which exists solely in the dark web since November: aethyx@torbox3uiot6wchz.onion.

From time to time we’ll check for new mails. Not on a daily basis but several times a month.

There were a few reasons why we chose TorBox as a provider:

* good reputation
* offer their services for a pretty long time already
* are not available through the clearnet
* 25 MB are free
* it’s easy to set up

Who knows, maybe we’ll widen the experiment some day in the future. Right now we’re taking part, observing. Today, it’s just an experiment.

We share the opinion that the dark web (or darknet, as it’s synonymously used) is still in it’s early stages of development. But as we stated above and elsewhere on our sites, things won’t get easier from last year on. Democracy is under attack and also its citizens. And for millions, who knows how many, the dark web became their one and only spot to communicate, to trade, and source of information. We are an independent online publisher, we support that. And want to be part of it. And no, we don’t think you’re paranoid: you are just normal.

Let’s fight for our freedom!

Sincerely,
the aethyx staff

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