Monthly Archives: December 2012

WordPress.com – Tech Thoughts Annual Report

Year end reviews and wrap- ups, bringing us up-to-date on the comings and goings in virtually every area of human endeavor (and then some), seem to pop out of the woodwork every year at this time. Not much of a surprise then, to see WordPress continue to issue an annual Blog summary to all WordPress Bloggers.

Here’s the WordPress summary of what happened on Tech Thoughts this past year. Not entirely accurate but within spitting distance.

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The Blog-Health-o-Meter reads Wow!

Crunchy numbers

About 55,000 tourists visit Liechtenstein every year. This blog was viewed about 1,300,000 times in 2012. If it were Liechtenstein, it would take about 23 years for that many people to see it. Your blog had more visits than a small country in Europe!

In 2012, there were 521 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 3,205 posts.

The busiest day of the year was January 6th with 6,193 views. The most popular post that day was Aldi Bot – Build A Botnet For $15!

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Attractions in 2012

These are the posts that got the most views in 2012.

Some of your most popular posts were written before 2012. Your writing has staying power! Consider writing about those topics again.

How did they find you?

The top 4 referring sites (sites from which users came to your site) in 2012 were:

  1. answers.microsoft.com
  2. mail.yahoo.com
  3. Google Reader
  4. puppylinux.org

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Hey WP! What about Australia – the cobbers (Mal, John W., John M., …………. weren’t far behind.   Smile

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A special “Thank You” to:

Delenn13 (Canada)

John Bent (UK)

Hipockets (USA)

Mal (Australia)

Fred (USA)

If you’re a regular reader here, you have my thanks for making this Blog a fun place to write up my thoughts and opinions.

The truth is – the success of Tech Thoughts is due, almost entirely, to the terrific regular readers here (many of whom have become quite good friends), who forgive my foibles and occasional fractious nature. You are a great bunch of people!

And, to WordPress.com – couldn’t do this without you. Thank you.

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Filed under Personal Perspective

Happy New Year 2013

Dear readers and subscribers,

As 2012 comes to a close, I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you a Happy and Healthy New Year. May 2013 fulfill all its promise, and may all your expectations be met.

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“Every man should be born again on the first day of January.  Start with a fresh page.  Take up one hole more in the buckle if necessary, or let down one, according to circumstances; but on the first of January let every man gird himself once more, with his face to the front, and take no interest in the things that were, and are past”.

~    Henry Ward Beecher

The year ahead could be the perfect time to ramp up your happiness quotient.

:)

Count your blessings and express gratitude for what you have.

Cultivate optimism.

Practice acts of kindness.

Avoid social comparison.

Nurture relationships.

Commit to your goals.

Learn to forgive.

Take care of your body – get active.

Step off on the right foot with a  little mood music – a particularly good rendition of Abba’s Happy New Year (playable in HD 1080p) on YouTube.

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Filed under Living Life, Personal Perspective

Merry Christmas – Joyeux Noel

Dear readers and subscribers,

christmas-message

Christmas – the traditional  season of giving and sharing – remains wonderfully inescapable. Its traditions and rituals, established in simpler times, continue to remind us – those we hold close are the greatest gifts of all.

May the spirit of Christmas bring you peace,
The happiness of Christmas give you hope,
The warmth of Christmas grant you love.

Have a wonderful Christmas, however you define it.

A little mood music – maybe?

Tech Thoughts is winding down for the Christmas break – so, you might find us fairly quiet the next several weeks. Regular posting will begin again on Wednesday, January 2, 2013.

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Filed under Point of View

Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – December 22, 2012

Three New Year’s resolutions for PC users – A new year is upon us, and that can mean only one thing: resolutions. For most folks, these tend to be of the “get in shape” or “quit smoking” variety. I have three suggestions for improving the quality of your computing life in 2013.

Click, Print, Shoot: Downloadable Guns Possible – Downloading a gun’s design plans to your computer, building it on a three-dimensional printer and firing it minutes later. No background checks, no questions asked. Sound far-fetched? It’s not. And that is disquieting for gun control advocates.

3D-Printed Adult Toys? 3DEA Has You Covered – A new pop-up 3D printing emporium in NYC is offering some interesting … gadgets.

Facebook Launches Rumored Snapchat Competitor, Poke – Facebook on Friday released a new app, dubbed Poke, which gives users a new way to chat with their Facebook friends.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Send one-click automated Gmail replies with Chrome extension – Do you find that you are forced to repeat yourself throughout the workday? If this repetition occurs via e-mail, then you might give GmailWiz a try. This Chrome extension adds up to four buttons to Gmail that send automated responses.

Windows 8 previews to go dark in 3 weeks – Microsoft’s free previews of Windows 8 will expire next month, giving users about three weeks to upgrade to a paid copy or face hourly restarts. All three Windows 8 previews — the Developer Preview of September 2011, the Consumer Preview of February 2012, and the Release Preview — expire January 15, 2013.

Bodhi Linux runs on Google’s Nexus 7 tablet – Google’s Nexus 7 is quite the versatile device, as it is capable of running various flavors of Linux and Chromium, as well as its native Android operating system.

Instagram Adds New ‘Mayfair’ Filter, Support for 25 Languages – Perhaps to again say sorry for its recent terms-of-service kerfuffle, Instagram has offered users a peace offering in the form of a new filter and support for more than two dozen additional languages.

FB’s $1 messages: One more way to get your credit card – The update to Facebook Messages is more than a change in a few settings. It’s also a sign of the social network seeking yet an opportunity to encourage impulse spending.

iPad is left behind as rival tablets get multiuser support – Want to loan your tablet to a child or friend but don’t want to provide access to all your data? Windows, Android, and even Amazon tablets make it easy. Apple’s iPad has some catching up to do.

Security:

“Change Facebook color theme” scam leads to spying Chrome extension – This time, the users are required to download a Chrome extension – and accept its EULA and Privacy Policy – that will be able to access their data on all websites, their tabs and their browsing activity.

Ransomware Extortion Scam Locks Machines, Demands Payment – The latest ransomware scam is locking down infected machines and displaying localized webpages warning users that their computer contains “banned material” and won’t be unlocked until a fine is paid, according to a report from McAfee’s Naganathan Jawahar.

How Hackable Is Your Bank Account? Call Customer Service to Find Out – I was recently stupefied to find out it’s extremely easy to get into my (former) bank accounts. All you needed to do was call up customer service and verify very basic information. One bank even reset my security questions when I said I didn’t remember them. This is unacceptable; here’s how to make sure it doesn’t happen to you.

Samsung Acknowledges Exynos Root Exploit – Samsung downplayed a root exploit vulnerability in some of its Exynos processors, and promised a patch for the flaw, according to a company statement acquired by AndroidCentral.

Crimeware Enterprises Mirror Legitimate Businesses – Not too long ago, it would have been extremely far-fetched to imagine buying crime services a la carte. But that’s the dynamic that emerged in 2012 to plague cybercrime victims on both the consumer and corporate end of the spectrum. The black-market infrastructure that supports cybercriminals is increasingly backboned by packaged malware, exploit kits, as well as hacks and fraud as a service. Expect that to continue and evolve in 2013, experts say.

Vulnerabilities in Java and Adobe to become main targets for cybercriminals – Software vulnerabilities will be the main target of cyber-criminals next year, according to a list of security trends that will dominate in 2013 by PandaLabs.

Company News:

Google ‘X Phone’ to compete with Apple and Samsung – Google-owned Motorola plans to release a sophisticated new smartphone next year, the Wall Street Journal reports.

EU Charges Samsung With Patent Abuse – The EU formally accused Samsung of patent abuse in its dealings with Apple.

Nokia, RIM End Patent Feud With New Deal – Nokia and Research in Motion have reached a patent deal that ends the companies’ ongoing litigation

No, RIM’s BlackBerry isn’t dead just yet – Despite a declining market share, RIM still maintains a fairly large and loyal install base, especially in the Latin American and Asian markets – providing the industry heavyweight with a steady revenue stream.

Webopedia Daily:

Optical Zoom – On a digital camera, optical zoom is a true zoom feature. It allows you to zoom in (or out) on the subject in the LCD or viewfinder. This will enable you to get a closer view of the subject before taking your picture. Optical zoom changes the magnification of images with the actual optical glass before the images reach the imaging sensor. Optical zoom allows for better photo quality than digital zoom.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Apocalypse Illustrated – 500px’s photographers imagine the end of the world as we know it.

Why You Should Run, Not Walk, in the Rain – Do you stay drier walking or running in the rain? Many of us run, and it seems like common sense, but this question has been debated before. MinutePhysics explains on YouTube the science behind why running is the best strategy if you don’t like getting wet.

Dvorak: Billion Dollar Fads – Which will go down as the biggest tech flash in the pan of the coming year: Instagram? Cloud computing? Facebook? iPad? Time for some faddish prognostication.

Free Advice for the People in These Stock Photos Who Are Grappling with Technology – The people in these stock photos are needlessly frustrated, perplexed or nervous about technology. It doesn’t have to be this way! Here’s some straight talk for each of them.

Infographic: Profile of an Online College Student – College campuses have been an American institution for millennia, but not all higher learning is being done in a traditional classroom anymore.

Today’s Quote:

“In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”

-       George Orwell

Today’s Free Downloads:

CCleaner – Nowadays, cookies, temporary files, and various other means of tracking your Web footprint are par for the course. Some of these trackers are useful, while others can be potentially intrusive. Thankfully, there are myriad freeware cleaners out there that help keep your system in check. CCleaner is one of the better ones for its ease of use and powerful cleaning capabilities.

Desktop Earth – Desktop Earth is a wallpaper program that will appeal to people who are curious about what the Earth looks like from space. Operating on a simple premise, this is a fun and interesting way to spice up your desktop.

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Filed under downloads, Internet Security Alerts, Tech Net News

How to Protect Your Privacy on Social Media

Guest writer Sarah Clare tackles the thorny issue of Internet privacy and offers spot-on advice  to help you keep your online information private.

imageThis week, social media was abuzz over reports that Instagram’s new terms of service allowed the photo-sharing site to hock its users personal photos for advertisements and other promotions. The story prompted outcry about the privacy that members can expect (or not expect) on social media sites like Instagram and Facebook, which purchased Instagram and which has a spotty history when it comes to its users’ privacy.

Understanding your rights and how you can protect your privacy on social media is important. The things you do online leave a virtual footprint that can be traced back to you for years to come. If you really want to protect your privacy on social media, here are a few things you can do:

Use a Dummy E-mail

One of the easiest ways that other users can find you on social media is by searching for your e-mail. You can make it harder, if not impossible, for people to find you by using a dummy e-mail. That way, only your close friends or family who you give the e-mail to can find your profile. Be sure to use an e-mail that does not include your name and that you only use for this purpose.

Use a Fake Name

Of course, even if you’re using a dummy e-mail, if you’re using your real name, anyone can find you. Make it harder for others to connect your profile to you by using a fake name. An easy way to do it is to simply drop your last name, using your first and middle name instead. Or you can use a nickname instead of your first name. Or you can make up a new name entirely.

Again, be sure you keep this name private and only give it to close friends and family who you want to know about your profile. Don’t use the name for any other purposes.

Set Privacy Options

Every social network has options for allowing you to control what you share with your network and with the public. You can control your privacy settings for your whole profile and for individual posts. Take the time to investigate your options and to set what you can to private. In many cases, you can lock down all your information so that it is visible only to your contacts (or even only to yourself).

Keep Business and Personal Separate

Most of us want to maintain some privacy online to protect our professional identities. You can help do this by using one profile for your private connections and another profile for your business connections. Of course, you would use your real name for your business profile and would share little to no personal information on it. You can then share personal information on your personal profile kept private through the previous steps.

Control What You Share

Of course, the easiest way to keep your information private online is not to share it. No matter what you do to protect your information, there will be some way for businesses or other people to see it. Keep your information private by keeping it offline, especially personal photos, information about your children, or thoughts about your political or religious beliefs.

Online privacy is a serious issue, and one which requires a greater level of personal responsibility as the options for connecting online continue to expand. These tips can help you to keep your personal information private while you connect with friends and business contacts online.

Sarah Clare is a writer and oversees the site projectmanagementsoftware.com, where she has recently been researching bug tracking software. In her spare time, Sarah enjoys cooking and scrapbooking.

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Filed under Guest Writers, Internet Safety, Online Privacy, Social Networks

Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – December 21, 2012

Top 10 Windows apps of 2012 – We’re back with our year-end look at the most popular products on the site in 2012. See which products reigned supreme on Download.com and in its 10 most popular software categories.

Video games to come under scrutiny in U.S. gun violence review – Violence in video games and other aspects of pop culture in the U.S. will be among the areas examined as part of an investigation aimed at reducing gun violence in the country.

Facebook Test Will Let You Message Strangers for $1 – Facebook is testing a feature that will let select users pay $1 to send messages to people with whom they have no connection on the social network.

Facebook begins rolling out new privacy tools – Unveiled last week, the tools are touted as helping users better manage who can see what on the social network.

9 PC games that redefine ‘holiday family time’ – The family that games together, stays together. Get started this year with these 9 addictive multiplayer titles.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Anonymous Twitter Account Returns, Westboro Campaign Continues – The Twitter account associated with the Anonymous hacker collective has returned to the Web after being suspended on Wednesday

Microsoft fixes faulty OpenType security patch – The company has re-released an important security patch, after the first iteration messed with OpenType rendering for some PowerPoint, Coreldraw and Quark Xpress users.

Consumer Reports makes case for Windows 7 PCs – Windows 7 may be the better choice as a PC operating system on new systems than the just-released Windows 8, Consumer Reports magazine said this week.

A Cell Phone for Those Who Just Want a Cell Phone: Doro PhoneEasy 618 – Some folks, especially seniors, just want a simple, standard cell phone rather than a smart phone with all the apps and hardware extras like cameras, GPS, and accelerometers. The Doro PhoneEasy on the budget priced Consumer Cellular network offers clear design and good call quality in a no-frills package.

Shoot, share videos on iOS – Google’s new YouTube Capture app for the iPhone lets you share videos quickly and easily.

Advanced Photo Editing on Your Tablet: Snapseed for Android – Now that the company behind Snapseed has been purchased by Google, we get an Android version of what Apple designated the Best iPad App of 2011. And as our Editors’ Choice designation indicates, it’s tops in photo editing on Android. Best of all? It’s now free

Security:

FCC issues security guidance to smartphone users – The Federal Communications Commission is advising smartphone users on how to protect their mobile devices and data from mobile security threats. The Commission released an online tool called the “Smartphone Security Checker” this week that outlines a 10-step action plan that mobile users can follow to prevent their personal data from being exposed in case their devices get infected with malware or are lost, stolen or resold.

“Facebook 2013 Demo app” leads to phishing – The offer of an app that supposedly allows users to view a new version of Facebook is the newest trick employed by phishers to get their hands on the users’ login credentials, Symantec warns. In reality, there is no “Facebook 2013 Demo” app – the page on which the users’ are urged to log in has only one goal: record the submitted emails and passwords and sent them to a server controlled by the phishers.

PowerPoint about the Mayan “end of the world” secretly booby trapped with malware – Interested in the buzz around the Mayan calendar ceasing to increment after December 21st, 2012? Don’t go looking for presentations about the topic, you might be in for a nasty surprise.

India developing own OS to boost cybersecurity – Defense Research and Development Organization is creating country’s own operating system to reduce its dependence on foreign operating systems, which it says may contain security risks.

Online reputation management tips – AVG announces twelve tips for individuals to safeguard their reputations while engaging in heightened e-commerce and social media activities during the holidays. AVG offers the following twelve tips to maintain control and promote fruitful engagement in digital life.

Will the Sweet Orange exploit kit dethrone Blackhole? – There’s a new exploit kit being offered for sale and it seems to be slowly but surely gaining in popularity. Dubbed Sweet Orange, the kit uses exploits for Java, PDF, IE and Firefox vulnerabilities, and is regularly updated.

Company News:

Is the BlackBerry PlayBook making a comeback? – The latest quarter showed a surprising rise in PlayBook shipments, suggesting a hint of life for the once-mocked tablet.

Patent Office Rejects Apple’s ‘Pinch to Zoom’ Patent – Apple was dealt a setback in its patent battle with Samsung this week when it was revealed that patent officials ruled that they should not have issued a key “pinch to zoom” patent to Cupertino.

CloudMe releases native app for Samsung SmartTV – Swedish cloud powerhouse CloudMe.com launches the first sync / storage app to be available for the Samsung SmartTV range of TV’s and Blu-ray players. CloudMe offers a full range of native apps in HTML5, GoogleTV, Samsung SmartTV, Android, iPhone, Mac, Windows, Linux and WebDAV with even more releases scheduled in the near future.

Google Sells Motorola’s Set-Top Box Business for $2 Billion – Google is selling off Motorola Mobility’s set top box division, Motorola Home, to Arris Group for $2.35 billion, the companies announced on Thursday in a statement.

Webopedia Daily:

iPod Shuffle – The smallest device in Apple’s lineup of iPod digital portable music players. Now in its fourth generation, the iPod Shuffle features an all-metal, unibody design with an integrated belt clip for listening to the player in a hands-free fashion, as well as 2GB of flash memory storage and VoiceOver capabilities for audibly reporting song details and the current battery level. The iPod Shuffle was refreshed in 2012 and now sells for $49.

Off Topic (Sort of):

5 Awesome 2012 Google Doodles – Google has been brightening up Google.com all year with a variety of doodles.

Today in TIME Tech History: Rube Goldberg (1970), Picture-in-Picture (1987), 96 Megabytes of RAM (1998) and More – Let’s hop in the TIME Wayback Machine to see which notable tech-related stories were published on December 21 between 1923 and today.

We need standard disclosure for online privacy. Here’s how – Instagram. Facebook. Google. Apple. Microsoft. How can we debate over an acceptable standard of privacy online if there’s little transparency at every turn? I propose a new approach.

Dvorak: The Spelling Error That Survived – You know the near 40-year-old word processor is in a sorry state when writers can still get away with typos and grammatical errors. A revolution in word processing can and must come soon.

Highest profile software failures of 2012 – SQS compiled a list of the worst software failures over the past 12 months. This year’s annual survey is based on major software failures throughout 2012 and highlights the continuing problems faced by the financial and banking sector, which have dominated the software glitch top ten lists over the past three years

Doomsday and 5 Other Things Not to Believe – Doomsday is not occurring on Dec. 21. But we believe a lot of silly things.

Today’s Quote:

“Among those whom I like or admire, I can find no common denominator, but among those whom I love, I can: all of them make me laugh.”

-      W. H. Auden

Today’s Free Downloads:

CrystalDiskInfo – This free system utility monitors the health and status of your drives and displays the information in a compact, easy-to-read interface. CrystalDiskInfo monitors and displays your drives’ temperature and SMART data, and it can even alert you when things start to go wrong.

MediaHuman YouTube to MP3 Converter – Save your favorite music from YouTube to MP3 format easily with this handy little app. MediaHuman YouTube to MP3 Converter software is extremely easy to use and allows you to extract audio tracks from YouTube videos and YouTube playlists with the highest quality possible.

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Filed under downloads, Internet Security Alerts, Tech Net News

Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – December 20, 2012

12 Tips for Troubleshooting Your Internet Connection – Here are some quick fixes for your most common wireless Internet and router problems.

Twitter Finally Letting Users Download Old Tweets – Twitter is finally making good on a promise it made months ago to let users download a record of every single tweet they ever posted.

CloudOn: Microsoft Office on the iPhone, Right Now – An iPad app which provides access to genuine Office programs comes to the iPhone. A startup called CloudOn already has an iPad app which lets you run the real Windows editions of Word, Excel and PowerPoint, hosted on one of its remote servers, for free. It competes with OnLive’s OnLive Desktop, and also runs on Android tablets.

Getting started with 23snaps, an Instagram for parents – If you use Instagram primarily to share pictures of your kids with family and friends and are cutting ties with the Facebook-owned app, then you might find 23snaps a suitable replacement.

ZDNet: 10 hottest Five Apps lists of 2012 – The most popular Five Apps lists of 2012 tend to focus on Microsoft Windows and Office – how to make them better, safer or obsolete.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Don’t blame Instagram users — blame Instagram – The tech press says users are at fault for this week’s terms-of-service debacle. Ignore them. the fracas has revealed something ugly in the way that many in the tech press blame average people for Instagram’s mistake. Somehow the botched rollout of a business model has been painted as the fault of the service’s 100 million users.

Most Popular Lifehacker Videos of 2012 – Just a little over two years ago, Lifehacker only had six videos in its Youtube Channel. As we near the end of 2012, that number has grown to 720. Which ones were the most popular this year? Read on to find out.

Microsoft courts Google Apps users with free Office 365 trial – In an attempt to woo users of Google Apps, Microsoft yesterday tripled the length of its Office 365 Small Business free trial from 30 to 90 days. The deal—pegged “P1″ in Microsoft’s current stable of subscription plans—offers cloud-based email, shared calendars and Web-based Office app access to up to 10 employees. Normally, P1 costs $72 per user per year.

Twitter temporarily turns out the lights on Anonymous account – After the hacker group allegedly posted a photo of an individual’s private information, its Twitter account goes dark and then is later restored.

The Windows 8 Store is broken: Here’s how to fix it – It’s been two months since the Windows Store launched, and the experience is still pretty rough. More apps aren’t the answer to the problems, in most cases. Joel lays out the issues, and how to fix them.

Security:

Android phones hijacked for botnet – If you’ve downloaded any free Android games recently and don’t have an unlimited SMS plan, you may be in for a nasty surprise when the next phone bill hits the mat.

FTC tightens privacy rules for kids’ apps – The Federal Trade Commission will tighten its regulation of mobile apps for kids next year after a recent survey revealed that privacy leaks were common. The new rules, which go into effect in July, require websites and apps geared toward children to obtain parental consent before tracking kids’ behavior or collecting photos, videos, or other identifying information.

2,100 Sex Offenders Pulled From Online Gaming Platforms – New York’s attorney general today announced that 2,100 registered sex offenders have been kicked off various online gaming platforms as part of an effort known as “Operation: Game Over.” Earlier this year, the accounts of 3,500 additional offenders were removed from platforms operated by Microsoft, Apple, Blizzard Entertainment, Electronic Arts, Disney Interactive Media Group, and Warner Brothers.

Apache malware targeting online banking – Analysis of a malicious Apache module, detected by ESET as Linux/Chapro.A, found that the world’s most widely used web server, Apache, is being used to carry out these attacks, injecting malicious content into web pages served by an infected Linux server, without the knowledge of the website owner.

FTC Demands Companies Disclose How They Gather, Use Consumer Data – The Federal Trade Commission Tuesday demanded nine data brokerage companies turn over details on how they collect and use consumer information as part of an inquiry into the industry’s business practices.

88% of corporate databases vulnerable to cybercrime – GreenSQL revealed that 88 percent of all companies participating in its December survey do not protect their databases from both external and internal threats, and almost one fifth do nothing to protect their databases at all.

Sweet Orange Exploit Kit Offers Customers Higher Infection Rates – The newly emerging Sweet Orange Exploit Kit boasts a 10 to 25 percent infection rate and is promising to drive 150,000 unique visitors per day to the websites of its customers, according to Jeff Doty and Chris Larsen of Blue Coat Security.

Company News:

Dropbox snaps up SnapJoy photo service – Dropbox has bought SnapJoy, a Boulder Colo.-based photo aggregator that launched a year-and-a-half ago. Wednesday’s announced purchase helps Dropbox enhance its position as a photography as well as a general file sharing powerhouse.

Nintendo’s TVii Launches Dec. 20 on Wii U – Nintendo will release its free, integrated TVii remote control service to Wii U owners. The free, integrated service for the new Wii U console combines what viewers watch with how they watch it, creating a second-screen experience on the Wii U GamePad controller.

Redbox Instant launches private beta for video streaming – The streaming service that’s aimed to compete with Netflix rolls out a private beta inviting users to test the service for free for one month.

Google planning cheaper Nexus 7, report claims – Google is planning low-ball itself with an even cheaper Nexus 7, according to an Asia-based report. Google and Asus wowed consumers with the $199 Nexus 7 and now they’re aiming at price points below $150, ultimately going as low as $99, according to Taipei-based Digitimes, citing sources at display component maker O-Film Tech.

Internet advertising revenue hits $9.2 billion in Q3 2012 – Up 18 percent from last year, the revenue is the most spent in a single quarter, the Interactive Advertising Bureau says.

Webopedia Daily:

Cloud Backup Solutions – Cloud backup solutions enable enterprises or individuals to store their data and computer files on the Internet using a storage service provider, rather than storing the data locally on a physical disk, such as a hard drive or tape backup. Backup providers enable customers to remotely access the service using a secure client log in application to back up files from the customer’s computers or data center to the online storage server using an encrypted connection.

Off Topic (Sort of):

The Web of Things: A web-connected world of smart devices – Ryan Boudreaux illustrates what is meant by the Web of Things with real-world implementations and an example of where the future of WoT is taking us.

Save the Earth! – By the Chevron Station on 45th in Wallingford, Connecticut, USA. (suggested by Michael F.)

Dvorak: Was 2012 the Year of Tech Blunders? – Allow me to deflate EE Times’ list of the top 10 tech blunders in 2012.

Australian university to issue 11,000 iPads next year – Initiative is part of a curriculum overhaul at the University of Western Sydney that will stress a “blended learning model.”

Email: Middle aged and still going strong – Email celebrated its 41st birthday recently, yet despite its age new research shows that its use is unlikely to significantly wane for at least the next decade.

Today’s Quote:

“Be fit for more than the thing you are now doing. Let everyone know that you have a reserve in yourself; that you have more power than you are now using. If you are not too large for the place you occupy, you are too small for it.

-       James A. Garfield

Today’s Free Downloads:

Puush – There are plenty of screenshot tools out there with different strengths; some aim for simplicity, while others include full-featured image editors for annotating and manipulating your screenshots. The biggest strength of Puush is that it can automatically upload your screenshots and share them with others. We think this program is a great choice for people who need an easy way to store and distribute their screenshots.

Comodo Personal Firewall – Secure your system against internal attacks such as Trojan viruses / malicious software and external attacks by hackers. With a user-friendly single click interface you can allow or block access to the Internet offering complete immunity to attacks and total protection of your personal information. Real time traffic monitoring enables you to react instantly to threats and identify bandwidth bottlenecks.

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Filed under downloads, Internet Security Alerts, Tech Net News