Guess who that Brit spy used to visit at Trump Tower?

The news that Christopher Steele knew Ivanka Trump personally, and had discussed working together on foreign business projects, seriously undercuts the claims of the US president and his supporters that the former MI6 officer was motivated by malice when compiling his explosive Russiagate dossier.

There have been rumours of past links between Steele and the Trump camp for months. Now extraordinary details have emerged in a report looking at what prompted investigations into the Kremlin’s interference in the US presidential election…

The president’s supporters have suggested Mr Steele was biased against Mr Trump…but according to the report, Mr Steele told investigators that when he took on the research assignment, he was not opposed to Mr Trump. If anything, he said, he was “favourably disposed” to the Trump family because of his past relationship with the Trump family member.

A person familiar with Mr Steele’s work for Fusion GPS in 2016 said that the former British intelligence officer told his American clients about his friendship with Ivanka Trump, and they agreed not to discuss it outside their small circle…

No one brought it up during the 2016 election. However, given the level of our Fake President’s whining about Steele’s dossier on links to Putin, the leak had to spring sooner or later.

The sum of new smart home standards

I have long blamed the sad state of the smart home on a lack of a standard. On Wednesday, I may have gotten my wish. Apple, Amazon, and Google all said they would support a new standard for the smart home called Connected Home over IP, or CHIP. So what will that mean, exactly?…

The CHIP standard will be developed under the Zigbee Alliance; a rough draft from the working group is expected in late 2020. While no one is making promises that your existing smart home products will work with the new CHIP standard retroactively, people I’ve spoken with who are involved in the various organizations that make up the alliance believe most of the hubs released over the last two or three years that have BLE, Zigbee, or Thread radios will be able to handle the conversion to CHIP…

I think everyone is at the table because they understand that if they want to build a real business around the smart home that extends beyond mere home automation, they have to build the infrastructure first. The schema is the infrastructure layer.

Makes sense to me. Though I admit, I haven’t moved along quickly at all since the only quadrant in my life best capable of all these links is the “entertainment” corner of the living room. And my Harmony remote already talks to everything. It lives there, anyway.