Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – August 12, 2012

Best Windows security apps – Just because threats to your PC continue to mutate doesn’t mean that you must pay for your peace of mind. We’ve collected some of the top free security and privacy programs available that will keep your computer safer.

How Apple and Amazon Security Flaws Led to My Epic Hacking – In the space of one hour, my entire digital life was destroyed. First my Google account was taken over, then deleted. Next my Twitter account was compromised, and used as a platform to broadcast racist and homophobic messages. And worst of all, my AppleID account was broken into, and my hackers used it to remotely erase all of the data on my iPhone, iPad, and MacBook.

Download an Instagram feed – Looking for a quick way to back up your Instagram photos to your PC? Or maybe you noticed an Instagram feed full of beautiful photos you’d like to keep and admire later? Try this app.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

How to Configure Google’s Two-Step Authentication – Enabling Google’s two-step authentication comes with a few complexities. But it also might save your data from nefarious folks out to steal or delete it for fun.

Free Gauss Detection Tools Offered – Two security organizations have released online tools that let Windows users check for possible infections by the surveillance malware Gauss.

Why did Microsoft kill the name ‘Metro’? – Microsoft and its partners can no longer legally use the term “Metro” in Windows 8. But why the change and why now?

How to Convert Between File Formats in iTunes – First, you need to convert the files to a format that is compatible with iPods and iOS devices.

Form Productive Habits With These Handy Tools – We can harness technology (and friends) to help us stick to our goals even when the going gets tough, and to create personal breakthroughs. Here are some tools that can help.

Buy Your Way to a Flock of Twitter Followers – Want more Twitter followers? Security firm Barracuda Networks has discovered just how easy it is to become popular on the service as long as you don’t mind whether the accounts are real and are prepared to buy them by the thousand.

App.net: Both Twitter Clone and Anti-Twitter – Entrepreneur Dalton Caldwell is unhappy with Twitter’s direction. So he’s trying to build an ad-free Twitter-like service with a focus on third-party apps.

Video: The surreal worlds of Crytek’s CryEngine 3 – Crytek is showcasing its advanced CryEngine 3 – which will power the upcoming Crysis 3 – in a video that is both surreal and intensely immersive.

Security:

Insecure WordPress blogs unwittingly host Blackhole malware attack – A major malware campaign has been spread via spam email and compromised self-hosted WordPress blogs, attempting to infect computers using the notorious Blackhole exploit kit.

How social engineering tricked Wal-Mart into handing over sensitive information – It turns out that good lying, self-effacing small talk and a lucrative government contract can stupefy people into swallowing the vishing bait.

Teaming Gmail, Google Search Not Security Risk – While the new service is not likely to open doors to attacks, privacy concerns may worry some users enough that they’ll opt out, expert says.

Exploits posing as messages from payroll company ADP – The bogus messages contain links to Java exploits that some anti-virus products struggle to detect.

Company News:

Google Appeases Hollywood But Rankles Internet Freedom Watchers – The MPAA praises the move to demote in search results sites accused of copyright infringement, while some advocates of Internet freedom pan the move or have a lukewarm response.

Don’t price Surface at $199, pleads Acer – Acer wants Microsoft to create a price gap that PC makers can drive a truck through.

Nvidia Rides Kepler, Tegra to Big Q2 – The graphics chip maker bounced back in a big way from its ho-hum first quarter with a better than 90 percent boost in profits and EPS in the second quarter

Apple Said to Be Hit Among Older Consumers – According to a finding by brand perception measurement company YouGov, since mid-July 2011, Apple’s biggest supporters are consumers 35 years and older.

Webopedia Daily:

Bottleneck – The delay in transmission of data through the circuits of a computer’s microprocessor or over a TCP/IP network. The delay typically occurs when a system’s bandwidth cannot support the amount of information being relayed at the speed it is being processed. There are, however, many factors that can create a bottleneck in a system. Bottlenecks affect microprocessor performance by slowing down the flow of information back and forth from the CPU and the memory. If all of the components of a system are not able to feed the same amount of data at the same speed, a delay is created. For example, a 2GB processor will be severely bottlenecked by an 800MB memory bandwidth.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Can alcohol make tech companies more creative? – A recent study suggests that though alcohol might impair one’s focus a little, it might do wonders for one’s creative juices.

Etsy Cracks Down on Drug Paraphernalia, Other Restricted Items – Etsy is a haven for homemade goods, but the online shopping site clarified this week that its stores are not the place to be selling drug paraphernalia and other questionable mater..

Smoon: Self-Transforming Spoon of the Future Is the Geekiest Cooking Gadget Ever – Described as a “spoon with an automatic capacity adjustment,” the Smoon is essentially a “robotic measuring spoon that dynamically adjusts its capacity according to a digital recipe.” In simpler terms, it makes life easier by taking away the need to determine what two and a half cups of milk actually means.With the Smoon, all you need to do is follow the recipes on screen and the Smoon will do the rest.

Free, Open Source Textbooks Shaking Up Higher Education – A new type of textbook is threatening to disrupt a $4.5 billion industry that has so far avoided the media upheavals experienced in music, movies and trade publications. Open-source textbooks, free for students to use and for professors to modify, are being developed by more companies and adopted in more classrooms.

Mark Zuckerberg’s topless photo stirs emotions – The mere sight of Facebook’s CEO without his shirt has left many wondering about the symbolism of the image and how and why it saw daylight.

Today’s Quote:

“The reason why worry kills more people than work is that more people worry than work.”

–      Robert Frost

Today’s Free Downloads:

ExtractNow 4.6.9.1 – ExtractNow lets you extract multiple archives with the ease of a singular button. Supports ZIP, RAR, ACE, & JAR file formats.

Soluto 1.3.905.0 – Soluto allows you to understand your boot, discover which applications are slowing it down (and keep running later in the background, affecting your ongoing experience), and allows you to significantly improve it. While Soluto focuses on the boot, it already researches for frustrations and helps map the PC Genome, allowing you to share your wisdom with others.

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