That’s right. No extra data, no changes to the image. All the pixels and colours are exactly the same. Any data you want inside a GIF without any trace. But how? I’m glad you asked.
During highschool I was interested in steganography, the study of hiding messages in plain sight. I had just finished a simulation project that encoded GIFs, so I was still in the headspace of the GIF codec. I began tinkering with the different elements and found an area I wanted to manipulate. Here’s how I encoded 127 bytes into a GIF without changing the file size.
Many steganography algorithms and strategies change the pixels of an image in such a way that it is not visible to the human eye (for example, least significant bit steganography). However, to a computer this difference is visible when compared to the original image. This algorithm produces a GIF with identical pixels to its original, and does not take advantage of any metadata in this image either. Nothing is added, no pixels are changed, no metadata is changed. Just the order of a couple bytes. …
This is a story about a world many don’t know, and some know very well. American Ivy leagues have been the talk of the town for many years due to their prestige, rankings, and now, controversy. However, there is an area of education swiftly rising in competition and rankings: Canadian technology universities. Universities like the University of Waterloo have been making global headlines for their billion dollar startups and excellent tech programs.
In the world of the internet, data is now a ubiquitous resource. There is a great amount of trust placed in data by many consumers. Often times the word “data” is synonymous with “fact”, however, there is an intermediate step for this conversion. Facts are created by looking at data and extrapolating causality. There is room for error in this extrapolation to fact and problems may occur when these “facts” propagate to the general public. There has recently been a surge of awareness in the faults of these facts created from data, dubbed the infamous “fake news”. Over time, the trust we place in data has changed. …
I’d like to challenge what the world thinks about the talent shortage in tech. Talent is not hard to find, technology is hard to teach. Let me explain.
Technology is a field with tremendous breadth and depth. It spans from AI and cryptocurrencies to apps that deliver meals to your doorstep. You can learn about how to make your first webpage or how a Mosfet transistor works. This incredible span of topics creates a problem when the idea of “learning technology” or “working in technology” is presented.
Determining what range of knowledge is required is a constant problem in technology. On top of this, the word “technology” and the topics it covers are changing rapidly. It’s no longer good enough to teach specific concepts or languages. We need to teach students a whole new way to think. Simplification of problems, isolation of problems, problem solving. These are skills that need to be applied no matter what you are working on. …
Since I was young, I always had dreams. One was to go to Hack the North (the largest hackathon in Canada), which I achieved this previous September. It surpassed my wildest dreams. My team even won an API prize from eSentire.