This week in web performance, we saw announcements from Apple, Chinese tech giants joining the auto-industry, and Bitcoin struggles with handling denial of service attacks.

Spring Forward developer announcements from Apple

Announcements from Apple always bring exciting discussion to the tech world, and this time was no different. Apple made several announcements on Monday, including ResearchKit, an open-source software framework to attempt to integrate medical and health research with iPhone apps. Other exciting developer announcements included the OS X Server 4.1 Developer Preview, as well as new Xcode 6.3 beta 3 which includes iOS 8.3 SDK and Swift 1.2.

China’s tech companies announce plans to  invade the auto industry

Two more tech giants are jumping into the self-driving car industry. Just a few days later, Alibaba, China’s biggest tech company, announced a joint venture with Saic, China’s largest auto company. The plans is to build a connected car that would communicate with other vehicles through the cloud. Just a few days earlier, Baidu, a Chinese search engine declared that they have been working with auto manufacturers. Both suggested a self-driving car could hit the road within the next year. Over the past month, rumors of Apple joining the auto industry and poaching engineers for an electric car project have caused quite a stir, although Mercedes Benz is not concerned with the competition.

Find out how much your site costs through new tool from webpagetest.org

For those of us in the web performance world, webpagetest.org has been a very useful tool. WebPageTest is an open-source project, primarily supported by Google that can be used to analyze website performance. This week, a new addition to this tool that can be used to estimate how much your website would cost users around the world to load. Whatdoesmysitecost.com will either use your website URL or WebPageTest ID and then will test your site. Try it out!

Bitcoin mining pools targeted in multiple DDOS attacks

Mobile currency mining pools are being held for ransom, in recent distributed denial of service attacks that began this month. AntPool, BW.com, NiceHash, CKPool and GHash.io are among a number of Bitcoin mining pools and operations that have been hit, and attackers are demanding a ransom of 5 to 10 Bitcoin in order to stop the attacks. Many suspect attacks like this are likely to continue. Check out our recent discussion, where we ask if load testing can stop hackers. In other Bitcoin news, T-mobile announced this week that they will begin to accept Bitcoin as payment in Poland. In fact, they’re  even offering a 20% discount for Bitcoin users.

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