Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – April 25, 2011

Too Many Antivirus Programs? – Keith has Norton AntiVirus, Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware, SUPERAntiSpyware, Windows Defender, and Windows Firewall. Is this overkill? That depends. If you have all of them running at all times, that’s very much overkill indeed. The general rule of thumb is that you need two always-on security programs constantly operating in the background: an anti-virus program and a firewall.

Secure Your Life in 12 Steps – Good security advice can be hard to find. Lots of security experts offer help, but not all of their tips are accurate or up-to-date, and many address PC security only. So even if you follow their advice, you may be more vulnerable than you think. That’s where we come in. We’ve assembled a dozen simple but essential tips–a 12-step security program–to keep your PC, smartphone, gadgets, and identity safe. The steps are practical and fairly easy to perform, so you can strengthen your security without losing your mind in the process.

Sony Makes it Official: PlayStation Network Hacked – Sony has confirmed that it took its PlayStation Network and Qriocity service offline to recover from a hack attack.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

WikiLeaks releases secret Guantanamo prison files – Nearly 800 secret dossiers from Gitmo are being released over the next month exposing what the U.K. Guardian newspaper calls “lie after lie” about the prison and its detainees.

Opera Browser – This browser refuses to accept the dominance of the “Big 2” and delivers a knockout product. Opera 11 continues the Opera tradition of doing something different instead of a minor reskin of someone else’s codebase, and delivers a plethora of features that are actually designed to be usable, not to pad out a checklist.

Your Android Phone is Tracking You – While everyone is crying foul that the iPhone is tracking users, people should be aware that their Android phone has been doing the same thing. Yes, it seems like Google’s little green robot is also collecting user data every few seconds and sending it off to Google. Data which includes GPS location, Wi-Fi hotspots the phone has encountered, and the device ID. The difference between the data that Google is harvesting vs. what is going on with the iPhone is that users have to opt in for their data to be collected.

Skype for Android – Select Verizon users no longer have a corner on Skype’s 3G calling. Now all Android users can place Skype calls over 3G, not just Wi-Fi.

Company News:

SanDisk and Toshiba One-Up Intel, Intro 19nm Flash Memory – SanDisk and its partner Toshiba announced this week a 64Gbit NAND flash memory chip using 19-nanometer (nm) technology, a process one size smaller than the memory chip Intel and Micron announced last week.

Windows-powered table has 55-inch multitouch screen – Ideum announced a Windows-powered table boasting a 55-inch screen that responds to as many as 32 simultaneous touches. The MT55 HD has 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution, and its pedestal includes an HP-manufactured computer with a Intel Core i7-870 processor, 4GB of RAM, dual 250GB hard disk drives, an Nvidia Quadro 600 graphics card, Bose audio, and an integrated UPS/surge protector, the company says.

iPhone Tracking Issue Prompts Franken Letter to Apple CEO Steve Jobs – U.S. Senator Al Franken (D-Minn.) has added his voice to the growing chorus of lawmakers demanding an explanation from Apple about a location-tracking feature in iOS 4.

Watch out Groupon, Here Comes Google Offers – Google launched a beta test this week of Google Offers, going head-to-head with the increasingly popular Groupon discount service.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Everythings Amazing & Nobodys Happy (YouTube 4:12) – A very funny video on why we complain about technology, yet fail to appreciate the amazing changes in our lives. (recommended by Mike C.)

Survey: Mac users more educated, less Harley-loving – A survey of more than 388,000 people conducted by Hunch suggests not only that those with Macs are more educated, but that they are younger and eat more hummus.

Innocent Abroad – Our two week trip to Ireland (to celebrate our 40th wedding anniversary) was an opportunity to try something I’d been wanting to try for a long time; cut myself off from all American news for couple of weeks and see how differently I view current events. I listened to Irish radio talk shows, which led me to my very first conclusion; Irish talk radio is to American talk radio what comic books are to fine literature. Irish talk show hosts are uncommonly well-informed as are the listeners who called in. (submitted by Dar)

Hans Rosling and the magic washing machine (Video 9:15) – In Hans Rosling’s hands, data sings. Global trends in health and economics come to vivid life. What was the greatest invention of the industrial revolution? Hans Rosling makes the case for the washing machine. With newly designed graphics from Gapminder, Rosling shows us the magic that pops up when economic growth and electricity turn a boring wash day into an intellectual day of reading. (submitted by Michael F.)

Today’s Quote:

“Who controls the past controls the future; who controls the present controls the past.”

–   George Orwell

Today’s Free Downloads:

Find Info Faster in Firefox With the Free KwiClick Add-On – KwiClick may be one of the best productivity boosters for Firefox you’ll ever use. This add-on delivers instant information from popular sites and services, such as Amazon, Flickr, Google, Twitter, and YouTube. It does it for free, and with little more than a click or two.

XPy 1.1 – xpy is a small program which will disable the default threats of your Windows XP installation. Besides the classic antispy features, xpy closes recent security holes like the remote procure call (rpc) service and the distributed component object model (dcom).

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Filed under Internet Security Alerts, Tech Net News

2 responses to “Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – April 25, 2011

  1. Michael Fisher

    Hi Bill. I’ve just tried KwiClick FF add-on. I like it very much, but I’ve removed it for now & I will give it another go in two months. It’s flawed (but fixable) & a beautiful idea…

    See the user reviews here on Mozilla Corp.

    I tested it with my FF4/XP & I confirm the bugs mentioned in the last three reviews above ~ namely:
    ** Disables FF Search bar
    ** Some YouTube page buttons missing
    ** NoScript problems

    In addition:
    ** Searching in Google didn’t note my UK locale
    ** Searching in Amazon took me to .com & not the Amazon(UK) site
    I expect I can find a way to tweak KwiClick to my needs for these locale problems, but I don’t have time to figure out how