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5
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360° IT Check #5 - Facebook's Experiences with Migrating to MySQL 8.0, Privacy Enthusiasts Getting Another Email Service, Surprise Number 2 in the Mobile Phone World, and More!

360° IT Check is a weekly publication where we bring you the latest and greatest in the world of tech. We cover topics like emerging technologies & frameworks, news about innovative startups, and other topics which affect the world of tech directly or indirectly.

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Facebook’s Migration To MySQL 8

In their recent blog post, the social media giant summarized their experiences with migrating to Oracle’s MySQL 8.0. The company from Menlo Park started to update their DB a few years back, about the time they finished their work on MyRocks. The migration they wrote about was from version 5.6 to 8.0. Version 5.7 was skipped, because as the company stated, they preferred to defer the change until their DB was released. It so happened, that once the social media company was finishing the rollout of MyRocks to their user database service tier, version 8.0 was released.

We managed to get a comment from Daniel Biskup, Data Developer at ITMAGINATION:

Facebook is still in the process of migrating to MySQL 8.0, which introduces many changes & more possibilities in comparison with the version 5.6.

To be able to say with confidence that the migration is going to bring positive change, we have to first and foremost ensure that the newest version fits their requirements, and will still be able to fulfill engineers’ expectations years down the line.

We certainly don't know all Facebook's requirements. Furthermore, a change of this scope isn’t easy, and it takes a few years. We know, however, that MySQL 8.0 is the most recent [major] release, and future patches should be compatible with this version.

If the company from Menlo Park released a DB migration automation tool, they would gain a tool  that other firms would gladly use.”

Email Service, For All Duck And/Or Privacy Enthusiasts, With A Twist

DuckDuckGo.com, a popular search engine for privacy enthusiasts, announced the creation of their email service, which is an interesting twist on existing solutions. 

The way it will work is after you reserve your free “@duck.com” email address, all emails sent to the new address will be sent to your “regular” inbox after the message gets scanned for trackers.

The company assures that DuckDuckGo does not ever save your emails - all tracker removal is being made in its servers’ RAM. Of course, the protection won’t work if you click any of the links within emails

For all interested in signing up, the new service is still in beta, which you can sign up for through DuckDuckGo’s mobile app. You may download it by going to this link and choosing a version appropriate for your mobile phone’s OS.

Xiaomi Becomes Number Two On The Smartphone Market

While Samsung remains at number 1, Xiaomi, for the first time in its history, placed second on the smartphone market. The company is growing the fastest among all mobile phone vendors, with an impressive 83% increase over the last quarter. Oppo, another Chinese company, placed second in terms of growth with 28%. 

Overall, out of the top five manufacturers, three of them come from the country with the capital in Beijing. It’s an interesting change in the dynamics. Up until recently, when you thought of a Chinese smartphone brand, you thought of Huawei. The ban issued by the American president in May 2019 had a lot of influence over the company’s market share. It took a while since we saw a drop, but it finally came in the 3rd quarter or 2020. Another noteworthy aspect is Apple’s third place is threatened with Oppo and Vivo approaching the Californian company’s market share.

Japanese research group breaks the world internet speed record

The new record established last week of 319 terabits per second (Tb/s) is almost twice as fast as the former record of 178 Tb/s. In their experiment, they managed to achieve the speed whilst sending data over an impressive distance of 3,001 kilometers. 

What allowed the team to break the record was the new internal structure of the cable, which was made of four glass “tubes” on the inside while amplifiers were “doped in either thulium or erbium”. Additionally, every 70 km there was a booster present which made everything possible. 

Interestingly, the internal structure of this record cable fits inside conventional cable housing. What this means is that we could potentially find these new cables in our houses, though don’t expect to get speeds anywhere close to the record, at least not in the foreseeable future. 

Will Netflix Be The Next Big Name In Gaming?

Netflix, possibly the most popular streaming service in the world, announced that it will expand into video games, in its letter to investors. The move can be seen as a gradual shift into overall interactive content after a series of movies which were exploring the area, such as “Black Mirror: Bandersnatch.” In fact, in 2019, the company’s co-CEO Reed Hastings admitted that the company is not competing with HBO too much. The biggest competition was… Fortnite.

The first games will be made for mobile phones, and will be available free of charge for Netflix subscribers. It was not revealed whether all tiers will include video games, or only some of them. The approach is more or less similar to Microsoft’s Game Pass, where a wide catalog of games is available to play and download as long as you’re subscribed.

Your Right To Repair

It comes as no surprise that devices are hard to repair, and break rather easily. The newest development in the matter comes from the United States. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), an American regulatory body, unanimously voted to enforce laws around the Right to Repair

What is the “Right to Repair” exactly? It’s a law that allows owners of products (e.g. smartphones) to repair their own devices without needing to exclusively go to the manufacturer for these repairs. What this means in practice for customers is that they will have access “to the tools, documentation and software required to fix the products they own.” The law applies not only to smartphones, but also to cars and, or tractors. In general, electronic and automotive devices will be covered under the law.

The commission was not particularly content with the practice to restrict repairs performed by third parties (e.g. repair shops which were not owned by the manufacturer). Furthermore, the FTC stated it would “investigate repair restrictions both as potential violations of antitrust laws and from a consumer protection angle”.


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