Monthly Archives: October 2011

Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – October 31, 2011

Sorry, Dropbox, I still don’t trust you – Last summer, I deleted my Dropbox account after the company admitted to a horrifying security breach. This week, I reluctantly opened a new Dropbox account.

Three Surprising Things About Hard Drive Defragging – If you’re still thinking about your hard drive in Windows XP terms, it’s time to learn how Windows 7 handles the not-so-big-deal that is defragmentation.

Editor’s Collection – Free Halloween Fun: Themes, Screen Savers, and Fonts to Ward Off the Holidays – It’s that time of the year again, when days get short, nights get long, and Christmas seems just over the horizon. Perhaps Halloween is Nature’s way of slowing the inevitable slide to the holidays.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Facebook Adds Security Tools to Protect User Accounts From Hacker Takeovers – Two new security features, App Passwords and Trusted Friends are designed to help Facebook users regain control over their accounts even if they are compromised and protect themselves from malicious third-party apps

This Is Lifehacker’s Evil Episode: Lock Picking, Flight Hacking, Geo-Stalking, and More – It’s Halloween, and we’re finishing off last week’s week of evil fun with our Evil episode of the Lifehacker show. We’re picking locks, geo-stalking, enjoying better flights, and more.

Graphics Cards: Choose the Best Board for Your Budget – Shopping for a graphics card? You have a lot to pick from. We tested the cream of the crop from AMD and Nvidia to help you find a graphics card that fits your needs.

Combating Halloween malware threats – Scammers and malware writers take advantage of this period to trick unsuspecting members of the public with rogue apps, attachments, search engine poisoning and ad scams that divert those clicking on search results towards sites infected with malware or peddling fake apps that will compromise a PC.

The trouble with Bing – Takeaway: With one simple example, Bing shows why it is not ready to overtake Google.

Anonymous Takes On Mexican Drug Cartel – The hacker collective that has targeted business and government agencies that displease it now threatens Los Zetas with a security breach.

Data breaches cause lasting reputation damage – Reports of data breaches affecting some of today’s largest companies continue to grab the headlines of prominent news outlets nationwide. The damage experienced by a company after a data breach has lasting negative effects on brand equity and reputation.

Company News:

Nintendo Posts Disappointing Wii, 3DS Sales – Nintendo lost nearly a billion dollars in the last six months, on the back of lowest ever sales for the Wii console and disappointing 3DS handheld sales.

Report: Samsung Passes Apple to Become Top Smartphone Maker – Apple’s reign at the top of the smartphone heap lasted just one quarter as Samsung moved past the iPhone maker to claim the top spot in smartphone shipments for the third quarter, according to Strategy Analytics.

Google Announces Long-Awaited Update to Google TV – Google said Friday that is preparing to push its “Honeycomb” update to Google TV devices, pairing it with apps from the Android Market and improved interfaces.

If HP/ARM rumors are true, AMD might be the big loser – With the rumor mill expecting Calxeda’s announcement on November 1 to be that HP will be utilizing their ARM-based server technology to deliver highly energy efficient servers suitable for web serving and similar tasks, most punditry has expressed the opinion that this is a shot across Intel’s bow. But if you take a step back you will realize that AMD, who has always positioned their server products as less expensive and more energy efficient, while delivering almost as much performance as Intel, is stuck squarely in the middle of this potential fight.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Lifehacker: How to Ditch Big Brother and Disappear Forever – So you’ve decided you want to drop off the map and leave Big Brother behind. It’s harder than ever in our always-connected world, but if you’re ready to plan your big vanishing act, here are a few tips to get you started.

Smartphone Camera Shootout – Can your phone’s camera replace your point-and-shoot? We tested four top smartphone cameras on speed and image sharpness to find out.

A decade’s worth of Windows mistakes that changed Microsoft (for better and worse) – Anyone who worked at Microsoft in the first decade of the 21st Century knows the company made many missteps and wrong turns.

Four Virtual Assistants Tackle Real-World Business Tasks – Think of virtual assistants as old-school secretaries, except that they can’t drop off and retrieve your dry cleaning or take your vehicle to the car wash because they live 7000 miles away. That’s a shame, because following our tests of four such services, we’d feel a lot more comfortable handing over our dirty clothes to these operations than entrusting critical business tasks to them.

Today’s Quote:

Trouble is only opportunity in work clothes.”

–    Henry J. Kaiser

Today’s Free Downloads:

NoScript – Javascript is a very useful type of Web programming, but many online attacks exploit it. Use this plug-in to block sites from running JavaScript in Firefox until you explicitly say it’s okay. You can give one-visit or permanent approval for the sites you trust.

KeePass (2.x) – KeePass solves an increasingly important dilemma: How to keep track of all of your passwords, whether they be for email services, Web sites, bank accounts, or what have you. Increasingly, we are inundated with passwords, with no easy way to keep track of them. KeePass does the job neatly.

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Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – October 28, 2011

Windows XP: Pros and Cons of Not Upgrading – Microsoft plans to support Windows XP Service Pack 3 until April 8, 2014, which means XP users have 30 months left before they’re on their own.

Security researcher finds major security flaw in Facebook – A security researcher has discovered a major security hole affecting the most popular social networking site, Facebook. Basically, the researcher found a way to upload executable files — such as those most commonly used by malicious software — on the social network site for potential sharing. Needless to say that the potential for abuse by malicious attackers is pretty evident.

Facebook account hijacked? Get a little help from your friends – Social network to let you set passwords for apps on Facebook and enlist friends to help log into blocked accounts.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Lifehacker: Kick Other Devices off a Wi-Fi Network with WiFiKill on Android – The app works only with rooted phones and works, similarly to FaceNiff, by spoofing ARP replies to trick other devices on the network into thinking your Android phone is the router. WiFiKill then drops all their network packets. To the victims, it still appears as if they are connected to the network, but the internet just appears to have stalled.

The HDTV Has HDMI, but the PC Does Not – Mikeybud wants to connect a PC to his HDTV, but the PC lacks an HDMI port.

DIY: Free tools for removing malicious software – Fighting the malware battle really hurts when you’re spending a good deal of your IT budget (if you even have an IT budget) on software to protect machines from attacks. Here’s how to do it for free.

Clean up the open with list in Windows Explorer – Your Open With list can get cluttered with applications that don’t match the file they are associated with. Mark Kaelin shows you how to fix that.

Firefox partners with The Evil Empire – Mozilla, has joined up with Microsoft to make a special version of Firefox that uses the Bing for its default search engine and home page.

Company News:

HP: We’re keeping the PC unit – HP said it will keep its personal systems group and that it will continue to sell PCs. The company added that its strategic review indicated that the supply chain and procurement hit was too much. Meanwhile, HP’s PC unit performs well.

Endpoint Protector 4 released – Offering enhanced protection, increased effectiveness and the fastest implementation time in its segment, the out-of-the-box Hardware and Virtual Appliance is now available for small, medium and large companies and organizations.

Websense introduces URL categories and social web controls – Websense introduced URL categories and social web controls that enable IT managers to better regulate specific employee actions, reduce exposure to dangerous data-stealing attacks and command-and-control call-home traffic, while preserving bandwidth.

National-scale iris and fingerprint identification – The software includes a larger database capacity, enhanced fault tolerance and a new matching algorithm that provides even greater accuracy, with extremely fast matching speeds of up to 100 million fingerprints per second – with a tolerance of 360 degrees of fingerprint rotation – and up to 200 million irises per second.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Man Carves Smartphone Dock into Prosthetic Arm – After being turned down by Apple, the British caterer worked with Nokia to design a dock that can go everywhere.

The Life and Times of Windows XP – Nobody would have been prescient enough to predict that Windows XP would be flourishing so many years after its debut. Not Microsoft. Not consumers and businesses. Not the analysts who get paid to know where technology is going. And certainly not me.

Hackers attacked U.S. government satellites – Two U.S. satellites have been tampered with by hackers – possibly Chinese ones – in 2007 and 2008, claims a soon-to-be released report by the the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission.

More Americans warming up to mobile banking (survey) – Approximately 12.7 million U.S. mobile users used their personal devices for checking up on banking information by the end of June 2011 — a 45 percent increase from more than 8.7 million during Q4 2010, according to a new survey from comScore.

Today’s Quote:

Only the mediocre are always at their best.”

–    Jean Giraudoux

Today’s Free Downloads:

Happy Halloween Windows 7 Theme – Does your home look like it’s been attacked by giant spiders? Do you have ghosts in your windows and grinning pumpkins on your front porch? Don’t leave your computer out of the fun. Load up the Happy Halloween Windows 7 theme and enjoy zombie Jack-o-lanterns, haunted wanderers, lovelorn skeletons, and more.

Sandboxie Beta – Tired of dealing with rogue software, spyware and malware? Worried about clicking unfamiliar Web links? Sandboxie runs your programs in an isolated space which prevents them from making permanent changes to other programs and data in your computer.

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Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – October 27, 2011

Top 10 Windows 7 desktop gadgets – Windows 7 gadgets offer added functionality and convenience in a variety of ways. Here are a few you may want to add to your desktop.

Lifehacker: A Guide to Sniffing Out Passwords and Cookies (and How to Protect Yourself Against It) – Roughly one year ago, a tool called Firesheep introduced a lot of us to just how easily another person on the same network as you can snoop on your browsing session and even masquerade as you on sites that require a login, like, perhaps most notably, Facebook. Here’s a closer look at how network snooping works and how to protect yourself from it.

Utility Check: Control Multiple PCs on Your Desk – Want to save cost and clutter? We look at three network utilities that let you control multiple computers from a single keyboard and mouse.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Google Doles Out Over $26K for Chrome 15 Security Flaws – Google Oct. 25 paid out over $26,000 to security researchers who found 18 flaws in Chrome 15, including several high-risk issues. Chrome 15 includes a new New Tab page, too.

Update apps, get malware – From the “Wow that’s cool, hope it doesn’t happen to me” files comes news that F-Secure has discovered an Android application that will update itself and install malware known as DroidKungFu.

How to Buy an MP3 Player – Getting an iPod might seem like a no-brainer, but there are still some high-quality non-Apple MP3 players out there. Here’s how to find the perfect portable media device at the right price.

Naked Emma Watson video leads to malware – Fake videos or pictures of naked international celebrities are often used as lures in schemes to propagate malware. The latest of these videos purportedly features popular English actress Emma Watson and users from various websites are redirected to a very expertly made fake YouTube pages where the video is supposedly hosted, complete with comments, “Like” and “Share” buttons and related videos on its right.

Report: Hacks From China Shuttered UK Firm, Cost Economy $43 billion – The head of the UK Ministry of Defence’s Cyber Security Program says that targeted attacks have already caused the premature demise of a UK wind turbine maker, and has cost the country $43 billion in lost economic growth already.

Top Government Security Officials Call For Secure OS Development – One of the keys to addressing the widespread security threats facing both private and government networks is to develop more secure operating systems from the ground up and not rely on trying to secure existing ones, top CIA and Pentagon information assurance officials said.

Company News:

Nokia Lumia Windows Phones Make World Debut – The high-end Nokia Lumia 800 packs some powerful hardware, including a 1.4GHz processor, hardware acceleration and graphics processor and an 8-megapixel camera. Meanwhile, the less expensive Lumia 710 is a “no-nonsense smartphone” is designed for instant social and image sharing. Get a closer look from the London Nokia World event.

Citrix delivers apps to any user on any device – Citrix announced the next stage of its strategy for Citrix CloudGateway, the unified service broker that aggregates, controls and delivers Windows, web, SaaS and mobile apps to any user on any device.

Walmart sells Samsung 4G phone for $30 plus contract, $200 without – T-Mobile announced the Samsung Exhibit II 4G, a 3.7-inch Android 2.3 smartphone selling for just $30 with a two-year contract or $200 without, making it the first no-contract 4G smartphone to be sold at most Walmart stores. Meanwhile, eWEEK reviewed T-Mobile’s version of the Samsung Galaxy S II, finding it to be on par with the Sprint and AT T versions but priced $30 higher.

First public cloud to support Solaris – CloudSigma announced the addition of Solaris to its cloud platform, making it the first major public cloud to support Solaris. Solaris supports more than 11,000 third-party enterprise applications across a wide range of industries and was engineered specifically for cloud environments.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Netflix CEO shows us the fastest way to end a successful career – Many great companies have been brought down by the power of an arrogant leader. In this article executive leadership coach John M McKee discusses Netflix and its leader.

Google Gets Nearly 6,000 Data Requests From Uncle Sam – Google Oct. 25 revealed that the U.S. government made a stunning 5,950 requests for data on Google user accounts or products from Jan. 1 to June 30 this year, a 29 percent hike from the previous six months. For perspective, the U.S. government issued more than three times as many requests for information, mostly concerning criminal matters, than India, whose government made 1,739 queries for data. Google said the increase is natural, as the company adds more Web services and users as time goes on.

What happened to going paperless? – Remember that quaint idea for offices to go paperless? What can we learn from this failed technology revolution?

The 10 most important things to teach your Word users – Sharing these tips and precautions with your Word users will help them become more confident and proficient — which is a win for everyone (including you).

Today’s Quote:

The important work of moving the world forward does not wait to be done by perfect men.”

–      George Eliot

Today’s Free Downloads:

360Amigo System Speedup Free – Think your PC is slow? 360Amigo System Speedup can quickly identify and fix a wide range of errors and speeds up your slow PC. Both beginners and experienced users will enjoy the available features and options.

Comodo BackUp – Comodo BackUp is the straightforward and powerful utility that allows users to quickly and easily create backup copies of critical data. Protect yourself against ever losing those critical files that took hours to create. Schedule backups to run automatically at a time that suits you.

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Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – October 26, 2011

How to Optimize Your Windows PC for Free – Here are a few practical tips for improving your computer’s performance by using stock Windows utilities and a few programs you can download for free. Though the associated articles assume that you’re running the latest version of Windows 7, many of them work just as well on older copies of Windows 7, Windows Vista, and even Windows XP.

The 35 Best Free Apple iPhone Apps – Apps are what transform the iPhone from mobile phone to pocket PC. Without them, you might as well be carrying around that old flip phone you had in 2004 that could play an 8-bit knock off version of Tetris. If there’s an app that makes owning the iPhone more worthwhile, we find out about it. And if they’re free—hey, even better.

Android 4.0: Eight new features that actually matter – While Google showed off plenty of the improvements were just eye candy, here’s my list of eight new features in Ice Cream Sandwich that will actually be quite useful.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

“So i googled your name…” Twitter phishing scam – The message is sent from a compromised account belonging to the target’s circle of followers, lending it at least a hint of legitimacy and raising the chances of the link being followed. As predicted, the link takes the user to a rather legitimate-looking – but fake – Twitter login page. Careful users will check the URL in the address bar, find that it isn’t situated on the domain (but, as in this case, on and close the page without giving up their login credentials.

Bend the Rules: Sync Android With iTunes, Text on PC, Keep E-Books Longer – Who says you can’t easily use an Android device with Apple iTunes, send and receive free text messages on a PC, and keep a borrowed e-book longer than two weeks?

RSA Attackers May Have Hit 760 Other Organizations With Similar Malware – Security professionals believe the attack on RSA Security was not an isolated event and that several hundred other companies around the world were hit by similar incidents.

Tsunami, a new backdoor for Mac OS X – Malware authors have taken an old piece of malware developed for Linux and have modified it to attack the Mac OS X platform, warns ESET. The OS X malware has been named Tsunami after the original, and the name hints at its main function: roping the targeted computer into a botnet for executing Distributed Denial of Service attacks.

Infected MyBB release package offered for download – The development team of MyBB (MyBulletinBoard), a popular PHP and MySQL-based free forum package, warned its users about the fact that its latest version available for download on the project’s site has been modified to include code that shouldn’t be there.

Company News:

Microsoft to Windows XP: Please Die, Already – Microsoft is eager for Windows XP, its 10-year-old operating system, to fade into computing history. The sooner the better, in fact. But for that to happen, the Redmond company needs millions of XP users to drop creaky, old XP and migrate (hopefully) to Windows 7, or even to Windows 8, which won’t arrive until next year.

Netflix Loses 800,000 Subscribers Over Price Hikes – Not surprisingly, recent Netflix price hikes took their toll, with approximately 800,000 angry customers dropping the service in recent months, the company revealed today.

5 Big Obstacles Standing in the Way of a Real Apple TV – In light of Steve Jobs’ comments to Walter Isaacson in his new biography, it’s pretty clear that Apple has a TV in the works. Although the company has already has its Apple TV streaming box (the “hockey puck”), Jobs said he wanted to re-invent the TV itself with a new, simple user interface. He even told Isaacson that he had finally “cracked” it.

Citrix Launches Virtual Desktop in a Box for SMBs – Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) is an increasingly popular technology that enables companies to run their user desktops as a virtual machine. So instead of requiring a fully unique operating system to be installed on each and every machine in a small business, VDI enables a more agile, rapid and centralized approach to desktop management and deployment.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Steve Jobs Exposed: Confessions of a Tech Legend – Walter Isaacson’s new biography of Steve Jobs is the product of dozens of interviews with the Apple CEO, who died earlier this month. It is an exhaustive volume, covering topics as diverse as Jobs’ long-term battle with cancer, attempts to revive Apple in the late 1990s and unvarnished opinions on rivals such as Google and Microsoft and allies. We take a look at some new revelations that the book brings to light.

A Human-like Walking Robot that Requires No Power Source – Yeah, you heard right. Researchers at the Nagoya Institute of Technology in Japan have developed BlueBiped, a set of robot legs that are propelled by their own weight. ET’s Sebastian Anthony walks you through this amazing invention (pun intended, of course).

Wash Your Hands: ATMs Are Germ Havens – A swab test conducted in six U.S. cities of 10 items commonly found in public places showed high levels of a type of germs that cause the common cold.

Infographic: Most Tablet Users Are Educated, Employed, Not Young – Tablet users are educated, employed, and earning money but are not necessarily young, according to new data. At this point, 11 percent of Americans have a tablet device and 77 percent of them use it daily. Approximately 46 percent are in the 30 to 49 age bracket, however, and they are serious about their news, according to an infographic produced by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism and The Economist Group.

Today’s Quote:

The follies which a man regrets most, in his life, are those which he didn’t commit when he had the opportunity.”

–     Helen Rowland

Today’s Free Downloads:

iCopy – When you’re setting up a home office, chances are your budget doesn’t include springing for a photocopier. But it may include a scanner and a printer. If so, an open source utility called iCopy can help you get the copy machine you’ve always wanted.

Advanced SystemCare 5 Beta 3.0 – Advanced SystemCare Free is a comprehensive PC care utility that takes an one-click approach to help protect, repair and optimize your computer. Advanced SystemCare is a very useful system tweak application. This is the last beta before final release.

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21,000 Free Printable Documents and Templates At

imageKevin Savetz is into free with his remarkable web site. Amazingly, there are 80 sites in the Free Printable network offering you, free of charge, over 21,000 printable documents and templates.

Note: Some premium printables will incur a charge.

There are so many freebies available on this site, that it would take page after page just to list them – so take a look at just some of the sample offerings in the graphics below.

Click on a graphic to increase the size to make viewing easier. Better yet, if your Internet browser has a Zoom feature, crank it up!

Free Printables 1

Free Printables 3 Free Printables 2

Before you begin downloading, checkout the FAQ page where you will find instruction for getting the best out of Kevin’s printable documents and templates.

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Filed under Arts and Crafts, Communication, Free Documents and Templates, Freeware

Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – October 25, 2011

Five types of apps you should install on every new Windows desktop – Windows includes numerous apps that are designed to fill basic needs, but there is little denying that such applets are often inadequate. As a result, organizations rarely provide users with a default Windows installation. Usually, additional applications are installed along with Windows. Here are five kinds of apps you might consider including in your Windows deployment images.

Mac malware evolves – time for Apple owners to wake up – Mac users have once again been reminded not to be complacent about the malware threat, with the discovery that cybercriminals have enhanced an existing Trojan horse to disable the rudimentary anti-virus protection Apple has built into Mac OS X.

Facebook Lottery scam emails making rounds – Offline crooks have had a lot of success with the bogus lottery winning letter scam, so it should come as no surprise it is often “translated” into an email and spammed out to unsuspecting targets. The latest version of this online scam aims to trick users into thinking that they have won a prize through a bogus “Facebook Lottery”.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Does Your Business Have a Cyber Plan? New Tool Can Help – The FCC today announced its Small Biz Cyber Planner, a new online tool intended to help small businesses create effective cyber plans.

New mass SQL injection attack making rounds – Again a mass SQL injection attack is making its rounds on the web – this one called jjghui referring to the website it redirects traffic to. So far, a Google search shows 180,000 pages have already been infiltrated by this attack. This attack seems to be targeting smaller sites that lack personnel with the skills and security awareness of larger and more well-known sites.

Personal info of 9 million Israelis stolen, available online – Personal information of some 9 million Israelis (alive and deceased) has been stolen by a contractor working for the country’s Ministry of Labor and Welfare with the intent of selling it to the highest bidder, reports The Jerusalem Post.

Increase iPad Productivity with Dropbox – Simple to use and extremely useful, the free file synchronization app and service Dropbox will keep all your files in step. You can’t move files between folders, but it’s still a very capable app. If you use an iPad for business, Dropbox is a must-have.

Create an Online Store With Shopify – Shopify takes you step-by-step through setting up your very own online store, including credit card processing, inventory management, and more.

Company News:

Microsoft Pushes Skype for Business – Microsoft has said that it is in the process of integrating Skype, the free communication tool for VoIP audio and video calls, across many of its business communications platforms, even as those platforms helped drive record revenues. The company is in the process of integrating Skype into Lync, Windows Phone, and other consumer-focused platforms too.

T-Mobile announces HTC Radar 4G coming 2 November for $99.99 – T-Mobile revealed some release details for their upcoming HTC Radar 4G Windows Phone 7.5 device on their Twitter account. The HTC Radar 4G will be released on 2 November for $99.99 with a 2-year contract. Generally a device with this subsidized cost comes in at about $399.99 with no contract.

Oracle acquires RightNow for $1.5 billion, aims turrets at – Oracle is jumping into the cloud customer service game via its acquisition of RightNow. The deal is aimed at the heart of

GFI Software reaches into the cloud with Monitis acquisition – GFI Software has acquired Monitis, a provider of cloud-based network and systems monitoring solutions. This acquisition further strengthens GFI’s ability to provide affordable end-to-end systems monitoring for SMBs and to be a one-stop shop for managing heterogeneous IT infrastructures, be they on-premise, hosted or in the cloud.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Top 5 Hacker Fails: Exploits Gone Bad – Taunting tweets, provocative pics, iPad-spam chats — stupid slip-ups lead to high-profile hacker arrests.

Ten Commandments of Office Etiquette – Proper office etiquette often comes down to common sense and common courtesy, but people still have questions.

The global population will reach 7 billion this month; here are 7 things you didn’t know – To commemorate (or perhaps caution against?) the event, the United Nations Population Fund unveiled a new public website called 7 Billion Actions that gives the UN, local governments, economists and NGOs access to data predicting population growth over time.

Wikileaks suspends publication of secrets amid ‘financial blockade’ – Julian Assange, founder of Wikileaks, said today that the organisation would cease publication of secrets to focus on lifting the “financial blockade” by major U.S. banks.

Today’s Quote:

In great affairs men show themselves as they wish to be seen; in small things they show themselves as they are.”

–      Nicholas Chamfort

Today’s Free Downloads:

Halloween printables – ( featuring 80-plus Halloween signs, cards, coloring pages, and puzzles, there are hundreds more spooky printables on the other sites.

CloudMagic – CloudMagic’s lightning-fast search tool impresses me: I like its speed, I like its layout, and I like the feature added to its latest version: Twitter search. This browser extension for Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox still searches your Gmail, Google Apps Email, Google Docs, Google Calendars, Google Contacts accounts, too.

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Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – October 24, 2011

Control Windows 7 with your voice – Voice commands aren’t just for smartphone users; they’re for PC users, too. We’ll show you how to use speech recognition so you can launch programs, dictate text, scroll Web pages, and more, all by voice.

Microsoft’s YouTube channel hacked – Videos on the software giant’s page have been replaced with solicitations for sponsorships.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Galaxy Nexus vs. iPhone 4S vs. Droid RAZR: Smartphone Battle Royale – Google’s Galaxy Nexus is the latest addition to this year’s hot smartphone line-up, alongside the iPhone 4S and the Droid RAZR. Unveiled last night, the Galaxy Nexus, manufactured by Samsung, embodies Google’s idea of the perfect smartphone, together with the brand-new Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich mobile OS. But does the Galaxy Nexus stand a chance against Apple’s iPhone 4S, which is currently selling like hot cakes, or the skinny Droid RAZR, also unveiled this week?

A-Google-A-Day Is Google’s New Scavenger-hunt Game – A Google A Day is a scavenger hunt type of game which poses questions that you are invited to try to answer using Google’s search engine. It appears that the purpose of the game is to get people to familiarize themselves with some of the lesser utilized features of the Google search engine like the search engine’s ability to translate languages, for instance. The questions are designed in such a way that you will not be able to answer them in one query. Instead, you’ll usually have to use information you learn from your initial query to make another Google search and sometimes use that information to make yet another search.

10 Features of Android’s Ice Cream Sandwich – Google’s Android 4.0–better known as Ice Cream Sandwich–has the usual smorgasbord of new features; we’ve selected the ten most delicious features.

10 Windows 8 Security Threats to Expect – Even though Windows 8 is more than a year away, Microsoft recently touted the new operating system’s security upgrades that include improvements to Windows Defender, Internet Explorer and the OS’ kernel. But given Microsoft’s history, perhaps it’s not such a good idea to get too excited. We take a look at what kind of security holes Windows 8 users should watch out for once the new operating system launches next year.

10 reasons to be wary of Google in business – Google caters well to consumers, but it falls short of meeting the business needs of larger organizations. Here are the biggest areas of concern.

Company News:

China’s Alibaba Sets up Fund to Back Mobile OS – Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group is readying the next update of its mobile operating system as a company subsidiary launched a new fund to support app development for the OS. In July, subsidiary Alibaba Cloud Computing unveiled its Aliyun OS, a Linux-based operating system aimed at helping the e-commerce giant promote its products in China.

Facebook Launches HTML5 Resource Center – Facebook has opened a new HTML5 Resource Center to help developers build, test and distribute HTML5 apps. The center is available as a resource to all HTML5 developers.

Cisco Launches Multi-Tenant Cloud Virtual Firewall Appliance – Cisco rolled out new network switches, including a new firewall product, to expand its data center portfolio with virtual security offerings.

Synnex to Help VARs Capture the Cloud – Synnex is getting into the cloud-computing space with CloudSolv, a portal designed to simplify and streamline your efforts to create, build and grow your cloud businesses.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Steve Jobs on Bill Gates: ‘Basically Unimaginative’ – In the upcoming biography of Steve Jobs, the Apple co-founder comments about his chief rival.”Bill is basically unimaginative and has never invented anything, which is why I think he’s more comfortable now in philanthropy than technology. He just shamelessly ripped off other people’s ideas,” Jobs is quoted as saying.

10 cool technologies to look for in your next PC – Impressive new technologies are revolutionizing PC performance, but should you buy now or wait for more improvements? These details will help you decide.

Microsoft’s OmniTouch turns any surface into a touchscreen (photos) – Microsoft and Carnegie Mellon University have shown off technology that can turn any surface into a touchscreen.

What If Steve Jobs Is Right? – According to leaked excerpts from the Steve Jobs biography which will be officially released tomorrow, Jobs is quoted saying, “I’m going to destroy Android, because it’s a stolen product. I’m willing to go thermonuclear war on this.” Jobs is also credited with stating, “I will spend my last dying breath if I need to, and I will spend every penny of Apple’s $40 billion in the bank, to right this wrong.”

Today’s Quote:

An idealist believes the short run doesn’t count. A cynic believes the long run doesn’t matter. A realist believes that what is done or left undone in the short run determines the long run.”

–     Sydney J. Harris

Today’s Free Downloads:

System Explorer 3.5.2 – System Explorer is free, award winning software for exploration and management of System Internals. This small software includes many useful tools which help you Keep Your System Under Control. With System Explorer You get also fast access to File Database which help you to determine unwanted processes or threats. System Explorer is translated into 21 languages and is available for download in installer and portable version.

Windows Firewall Control – Windows Firewall Control is a small and easy to use application that runs in your system tray and provides quick access to the most frequent options used from Windows Firewall.

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Filed under Internet Security Alerts, Tech Net News