Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – October 26, 2012

Should you lie on Facebook? – A senior government official has advised users of social networks such as Facebook on how to better protect their privacy. Don’t tell social networks the truth.

The CIA de-blurs license plates from outer space. Now you can too, for free – Moscow-based image processing guru Vladimir Yuzhikov has created SmartDeblur, a Windows application that does a remarkable job of making blurry images less blurry. Basically, the blurred bits in an image follow patterns that can be traced backwards mathematically. Deliberately blurred signs, serial numbers, and licenses can be adjusted enough to make them legible again. It also has the potential to make smartphone cameras perform better.

Feds uphold jailbreaking laws on DVDs, game consoles, tablets – While smartphone jailbreaking remains legal, new rules published by the U.S. Copyright Office dictate that cracking DVDs, gaming consoles, and tablets is against the law.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Small Business Tech: What You Need – This step-by-step guide will help you get started on your website, your hardware, and your software and services.

10 Windows 8 Features That Will Delight Users – Beginning today, consumers and businesses will be able to experience all that Windows 8 has to offer, including a beautiful new user interface and a wide range of apps with the grand opening of the Windows Store. We take a look at a few of the many new Windows 8 features that will appeal to users.

10 Windows 8 apps you should download first – We’ve taken the liberty of sharing some of our favorite Windows 8 apps in order to help you get up to speed as quickly as possible so that you can take advantage of all that Windows 8 can offer. Microsoft does a pretty decent job of covering your basic computing needs with apps like Messaging, Mail, SkyDrive and Skype, but there are a few excellent third-party apps you should download post-haste.

Windows 8 Apps designed for the tech savvy – Greg Shultz shows you a couple of the Windows 8 apps he has found that he thinks provide a great techy experience.

Box joins the Windows 8 party with launch of new app – Obscured by the Microsoft Windows 8 launch event, Box today officially launched its new Windows 8 app. The Box app is precisely the sort of thing that Windows 8 needs, and arguably should have been spotlighted by Microsoft at the event, along with Skype, Evernote, Netflix, Kindle, and other key apps from major players that have invested the time and effort to embrace the new Windows 8.

Google Maps now details the footprints of buildings – Google Maps now offers details about the height and size of structures shown in its maps, calculated by algorithms in the map tools. First to get the new data are major U.S. cities.

Windows XP turns 11, still not dead yet – On the same day Microsoft loudly proclaims Windows 8 in New York, the aging-but-still-going Windows XP today quietly celebrated its 11th birthday. On Oct. 25, 2001, Microsoft launched Windows XP, unknowingly unleashing its most successful operating system ever. If they only could do the same today, the company’s executives must think as they assemble for a day-long Windows 8 launch party.

Don’t like Ubuntu’s Unity? Try the new GNOME Remix instead - Now offering a compelling new alternative for Ubuntu fans who are not so fond of the Unity interface that’s now used by default in Canonical’s popular Linux distribution, the new Ubuntu GNOME Remix is definitely worth a closer look. Here’s a rundown of what you’ll find.

Amazon Celebrates Halloween With 7 Days of Free Apps – The Amazon Appstore is offering up seven days of Halloween deals to get smartphone users in the spirit. Today through Oct. 31, the Amazon Free App of the Day will feature spooky apps like The Haunt and It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.

Babbel in a New Language – For an inexpensive and little-known language-learning program, Babbel exceeds expectations, delivering high quality courses in 11 languages for anyone who doesn’t mind an online-only program.

Security:

Delta-themed spam run delivers deficient malware – The email claims that the ticked for the flight booked by the recipient is attached to the email, and that it should be downloaded and printed out. But the attached Delta_A_Ticket_Print_Document_3477.zip is actually a variant of the infamous Bredolab Trojan, whose main goal is to download more malware on to the compromised computer, and this particular variant is currently detected by only 3 of the 43 AV solutions used by VirusTotal.

Six critical vulnerabilities in Adobe Shockwave patched – If your Windows or Mac computer uses the Adobe Shockwave Player, it’s time to update your systems.

Open DNS resolvers increasingly abused to amplify DDoS attacks – Open and misconfigured DNS (Domain Name System) resolvers are increasingly used to amplify distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, according to a report released Wednesday by HostExploit, an organization that tracks Internet hosts involved in cybercriminal activities.

Anonymous hacks police forum, sends emails to police officers – Anonymous is mostly known for their real-life and online protests, DDoS attacks, and shaming of businesses and government organizations by publicly releasing confidential data stolen from their servers. But the group has recently executed a variation on those themes by compromising a U.K. police-related forum and using the collected e-mail addresses to urge law enforcement officers to “stand with us” in the upcoming protest campaign on the 5th of November, when England celebrates Guy Fawkes Night / Bonfire Night, and Anonymous plans a peaceful protest in front of the Houses of Parliament.

Google, Microsoft and Yahoo fix serious email weakness – Google, Microsoft and Yahoo have remedied a cryptographic weakness in their email systems that could allow an attacker to create a spoofed message that passes a mathematical security verification.

Company News:

Apple Tips December Earnings Drop, But Why? – Apple today revealed that it expects to see its first earnings per share decline in its history come December. But why?

Microsoft, Google European Privacy Concerns Could Affect U.S. – Google and Microsoft continue to face tough business and privacy scrutiny in Europe. Analysts discuss whether tougher actions by European authorities will bring stronger rules to the U.S.

Hosting Site Found Liable for SumoTorrent’s Infringement – A Dutch court this week found that hosting company XS Networks is liable for the activity of SumoTorrent, a torrent site it hosted.

Apple turns U.K. legal loss into new Samsung attack – The company maker turns a legal requirement to publicly acknowledge defeat in its U.K. High Court patent case against Samsung into a new chance to say Samsung copied the iPad

Webopedia Daily:

iSCSI – Pronounced eye skuzzy. Short for Internet SCSI, an IP-based standard for linking data storage devices over a network and transferring data by carrying SCSI commands over IP networks. iSCSI supports a Gigabit Ethernet interface at the physical layer, which allows systems supporting iSCSI interfaces to connect directly to standard Gigabit Ethernet switches and/or IP routers. When an operating system receives a request it generates the SCSI command and then sends an IP packet over an Ethernet connection. At the receiving end, the SCSI commands are separated from the request, and the SCSI commands and data are sent to the SCSI controller and then to the SCSI storage device. iSCSI will also return a response to the request using the same protocol.

Off Topic (Sort of):

10 Percent of Campaign Donations Made Via Cell Phone – About 10 percent of 2012 presidential campaign donations were made via text or mobile apps, according to new data from Pew.

Microscope photos: See a beautiful blood-brain barrier – Nikon releases the results of its annual Small World Photomicrography Competition, and algae, larva, and bat embryos have never looked so good.

Retelling history, 140 characters at a time – Twitter is known for real-time reporting of events. But now, a number of projects are doing “real-time” reporting of historical events like World War II and the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Features that Google Chrome should steal from other browsers – Despite my deeply ingrained habit of always clicking on the Firefox icon when I want to go online, those of us that follow these things generally acknowledge that Chrome is the best and fastest browser around. It performs better on benchmarks and seems to be improving faster than IE, Firefox, or Safari. That said, it could still use some tweaking. The guys at ExtremeTech have some suggestions for what Chrome could stea–er–learn from its competitors.

U.S. looks to replace human surveillance with computers – Security cameras that watch you, and predict what you’ll do next, sound like science fiction. But a team from Carnegie Mellon University says their computerized surveillance software will be capable of “eventually predicting” what you’re going to do.

Today’s Quote:

There is no pleasure in having nothing to do; the fun is in having lots to do and not doing it.”

-     Mary Wilson Little

Today’s Free Downloads:

Wise Program Uninstaller – What Windows leaves behind, Wise Program Uninstaller aims to scrub, clean, and totally destroy. Remove stubborn software and clear out the post-removal detritus.

PhraseExpress – No more typing common phrases again! Organize frequently used text snippets, expand abbreviations as you type, launch programs with text shortcuts, Auto-complete repetitive phrases, quick access to the Windows Clipboard History and correct spelling mistakes in any application.

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2 Comments

Filed under downloads, Internet Security Alerts, Tech Net News

2 responses to “Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – October 26, 2012

  1. Hey Bill,

    I just wanted to let you know, I downloaded PhraseExpress and it is absolutely awesome. I have been using texter for awhile now to automate alot of typing and it is a decent program in its own right. I was leery because the last time I tried PhraseExpress it was not windows 8 compatible.
    Although they don’t officially support Windows 8, it now works with it at least.
    I love it, you can customize it to do just about anything from inserting text to web searches to opening programs, files or folders.

    Thanks for reminding me about it
    TeX