Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – February 25, 2013

Firefox to begin blocking third-party cookies by default – Firefox is giving people concerned about their online privacy another reason to like the popular browser. It will begin blocking cookies from third-party advertisers in an upcoming release. While Firefox users can already use the Do Not Track extension to stave them off, the patch will allow the browser to do it by default. That means sites you’ve visited can leave cookies on your computer but ad networks that don’t already have one on your machine can’t.

Too many confusing apps? Prioritize programs with Should I Remove It? – Cleaning out and optimizing a PC can be less time consuming than reformatting. Should I Remove It? can make this troublesome chore a little easier by helping you know what you should keep and what you should remove.

Rumor: ‘Six Strikes’ Copyright Plan Starts Rolling Out Monday – Get caught sharing enough copyright content and you won’t have your Internet cut off, but you could have it throttled!

Antivirus Testing 101 – PCMag performs hands-on antivirus testing with live viruses and other malware, but our techniques necessarily aren’t the same as what the big independent labs use. Here’s a peek.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Hands on with Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8.0 tablet – Aiming for a compromise between its 10.1-inch and 5.5-inch writing pad devices, Samsung unveils new S-Pen hardware.

Emporia Connect senior phones keeps loved ones in the know with remote access – The Emporia Connect isn’t just a run in the mill flip-phone for seniors. It also allows loved ones to remotely access and manage the handset’s calendars and contact information via a smartphone app.

The PC of 2023 is your smartphone and cloud – In ten years, what we refer to as Personal Computing will be radically different than what we experience today.

Microsoft’s next Windows Blue test build said to be a public preview – Microsoft’s Windows Blue operating system update may be on its way to a public, consumer preview in the next few months. And it might even be free, according to the latest scuttlebutt.

Android quitters fuel Windows Phone UK growth – Microsoft’s Windows Phone is picking up fans at the expense of rival operating systems such as Android, according to new smartphone sales figures.

PlayStation 4 vs. PC graphics: Can Sony even compete? – This so-called console is in fact a full-blown x86 PC at its multicored core. More interestingly, the specs indicate that unlike its predecessor—which was an absolute beast when it launched seven years back—the PlayStation 4 will likely lag behind cutting-edge gaming PCs from the very first day it hits the streets.

15 euro Nokia 105 is as cheap as it looks – The basic and dirt-cheap cell phone for emerging markets promises outstanding battery life for those who just want calls.

Free as a Thunderbird – If price or platform support are among your concerns when picking a desktop email client, then Mozilla Thunderbird is free and hard to beat. For those who need a desktop e-mail client and don’t need to work with an Exchange server, Thunderbird is decent, and Linux users can’t do better.

Sony’s waterproof Xperia Tablet Z is the thinnest, lightest 10-inch tablet yet – With its Xperia Tablet Z, Sony offers a thin, light, fully functional premium Android tablet that just so happens to be waterproof.

Security:

Another iPhone Passcode Bypass Vulnerability Discovered – It’s getting hard to keep track of all the bugs piling up for Apple’s iPhone. Now it seems a glitch in the iOS kernel of Apple’s much maligned iOS 6.1 is responsible for yet another passcode bypass vulnerability, the second to surface this month. Attackers can apparently access users’ photos, contacts and more by following a series of steps on an iPhone running iOS 6.1.

Security execs fret over BYOD and social; Outgunned anyway – Seventy eight percent of security pros see bring your own device (BYOD) policies as a big security risk. The problem: Security pros are outgunned, according to a survey.

HTC Settlement Could Alter Mobile Security and Privacy Landscape – HTC America’s settlement with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission on Friday has the potential to revamp not only how hardware manufacturers handle the security and privacy of mobile devices, but how carriers do so, as well.

No, Iran didn’t really hack and down a foreign military spy drone – A report by the Islamic Republic News Agency has raised eyebrows, as it appeared to claim that Iranˈs Revolutionary Guard Corps had managed to hack and down a foreign spy drone. But did it really happen?

Drone hijacked by hackers from Texas college with $1,000 spoofer – Researchers at the University of Texas at Austin hacked and hijacked a drone in front of the dismayed Department of Homeland Security officials who had dared them $1,000 to do it.

Large gap exists between security focus, new tech – Survey reveals security professionals see higher risk from application vulnerabilities, malware, mobile devices and cloud, but do not prioritize manpower in tackling these threats within the enterprise.

Company News:

Global allies give Mozilla’s Firefox OS a mobile foothold – Partners backing the browser-based mobile OS include phone maker LG and 18 mobile network operators across the world. The first phones are due in the second quarter.

HP aims to launch low-power ‘Moonshot’ server next quarter – Hewlett-Packard’s first low-power server for hyperscale computing environments, developed under a project it calls Moonshot, will go on sale next quarter, CEO Meg Whitman said last week. Project Moonshot is an effort to build low-power servers based on alternatives to Intel’s Xeon processors for use in mega data centers like those operated by Facebook and Google.

Vuzix M100 hands-free smartphone display–a smaller, cheaper Google Glass – If you’d like to get your hands on a pair of Google’s Project Glass augmented reality glasses but you’d rather not drop the $1500 early adopter’s fee, Vuzix has a product for you. The M100 hands-free smartphone display from Vuzix is a smaller and cheaper wearable screen that can also do augmented reality. The company says it will be available this summer for under $500.

LG acquiring webOS from HP in smart TV push – HP’s mobile operating system webOS, which met an untimely demise thanks to the poor management show at the PC maker, will live on—in smart TVs and not in smartphones.

Lenovo unveils quad-core tablets running Android 4.2 – Lenovo has announced new 7-inch and 10-inch tablets with quad-core processors and Google’s latest Android 4.2 operating system, becoming one of the few companies to offer that version of the OS in tablets. The tablets will be available worldwide in the second half this year, though pricing was not immediately available.

Wireless carriers seek cross-border spectrum cooperation – Five leaders of network operators want better wireless regulations, promising better service for consumers but also hoping for better business for themselves.

Japan’s NTT Docomo plans to offer 112.5 mb/sec LTE speeds – NTT Docomo’s CEO, Kaoru Kato, said he plans to offer download speeds of 112.5 megabits per second to his company’s customers. The higher speeds should come shortly, he said. NTT Docomo is Japan’s largest wireless carrier by customer base. In comparison, Verizon and AT&T boasts speeds of 20 mb/sec on a good day and an uncluttered network. The speeds are more in the high single digits or low double digits.

Webopedia Daily:

Curated commerce – In electronic commerce (ecommerce) terminology, curated commerce refers to creating unique product lines that provide customers with a distinct collection not offered by other online retailers in a market. The demand for personalization in online shopping is a driving factor behind curated commerce. Retailers often use marketing tactics such as email marketing to show a selection of curated products to customers based on personal taste and purchase history with the retailer.

Off Topic (Sort of):

What Happened With Saturday’s NASCAR Crash Video? – It’s up! It’s down! It’s up again! Who’s pulling the strings with Nascar’s controversial crash video?

Sexist photo makes Facebook joke 200 times more popular, and prompts rape comments – A joke was shared yesterday on a Facebook Page that I help to moderate, about a drunk woman coming home after a night out with her friends, and trying to imitate a cuckoo clock to avoid waking her husband. It’s an old joke that I first heard decades ago, although then it was about a drunk husband trying to avoid waking his wife. So why were the genders in this old joke reversed? (suggested by Michael F.)

YouTube video of him burying cars gets snow plow driver fired – A snow plow driver nicknamed Dogg is in the doghouse of one Massachusetts city after filming himself burying cars with snow during a blizzard and having a good laugh about it.

Facebook turns a deaf ear to users aged over 99 – The social media behemoth apparently never assumed that a person with three digits worth of living to their credit would sign up to use its service.

The Onion deletes offensive tweet about child Oscar nominee – The humor publication seems to have gone too far with a tweet that directed a term many consider deeply offensive at Best Actress nominee Quvenzhane Wallis.

Today’s Quote:

“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”

-       The Wizard of OZ

Today’s Free Downloads:

CDBurnerXP – CDBurnerXP is a free application to burn CDs and DVDs, including Blu-Ray and HD-DVDs. It also includes the feature to burn and create ISOs, as well as a multilanguage interface. Everyone, even companies, can use it for free. It does not include adware or similar malicious components.

Artweaver Free 3.1.4 – Artweaver lets you paint creatively with the help of a huge range of painting tools. You can create sketches from photos or just experiment with colors.

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