Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – August 30, 2012

The Best Web-Based Email Services – Despite the rise of social networking, you still need an email account. Luckily, your options are getting better and better.

7 Surprising Things Lurking In Online ‘Terms of Service’ Agreements – When is the last time you actually read the “terms of service” agreement before you registered for a new website or downloaded a new app?

Plan Your Free Online Education at Lifehacker U: Fall Semester 2012 – Your education doesn’t have to stop once you leave school—freedom from the classroom just means you have more control over what you learn and when you learn it. We’ve put together a curriculum of some of the best free online classes available on the web this fall for our third term of Lifehacker U, our regularly-updating guide to improving your life with free, online college-level classes.

Google+ Launches Business-Savvy Social Networking Tools – Google on Wednesday got dressed up in its best suit and tie and grabbed its briefcase to head to work, rolling out new Google+ tools and features tailored for businesses that will be free through the end of 2013.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Grooveshark is Back on Android After 16 Month Hiatus – The music app Grooveshark is available again for Android devices 16 months after it was removed by Google from its application market.

RogueKiller scans systems for rootkits, registry issues, and more – RogueKiller is better at resolving registry issues than CCleaner, according to Jack Wallen. Learn how to use this supplemental defense against malicious software.

Facebook given one week to stop breaching privacy laws – Facebook has until September 4th to stop giving user info to third parties without explicit consent. Meanwhile, one observer says privacy trickery is built right into the App Center’s design.

Why You Shouldn’t Trust Positive Online Reviews—Or Negative Ones, for That Matter – Judging by how prevalent the manipulation seems to be, it’s arguable that online user ratings and reviews are less trustworthy than ever.

Firefox 15 released: Seven critical vulnerabilities patched and stealthy updates too! – The latest version of the Firefox browser fixes a critical security hole Naked Security reported on in June, and makes the browser’s silent update feature even stealthier.

Dropbox Two-Step Verification: Hands On – Online services are enabling additional security by checking your identity via SMS or a mobile app. Here’s how it works.

Lock Down Facebook Photo Albums: Hands-On With McAfee Social Protection App – McAfee’s newest social protection app lets you create protected Facebook albums.

HDTV Buying Guide: Select the Right Flat-Panel Technology – Before you drop hundreds or thousands of dollars on the wrong flat-panel HDTV set, read our comprehensive breakdown of everything you need to know. Our HDTV buying guide might just help you save some money.

Tech You Should NOT Buy Now – Stop! Put that credit card away! If you buy these products now, you risk them becoming obsolete in just a few months.

You Can Write, But You Can’t Hide: Big Data Knows Your Writing Quirks – Data scientists have been able to mine unstructured data to determine the identity of a document’s author. It seems we all have a “write-print” as unique as our fingerprint.

Microsoft Surface: Cheat Sheet – Microsoft’s Windows 8 tablets – all you need to know.


Java Zero-day Exploit Goes Mainstream, 100+ Sites Serve Malware – Attackers using two recently-uncovered Java unpatched vulnerabilities, or “zero-days,” have quickly expanded their reach by going mainstream, security experts said today. And on Tuesday, Mozilla, maker of Firefox, joined the chorus of advice that users should disable the current version of Oracle’s Java. The company is also ready to automatically block the plug-in from running in its browser, although it has not yet pulled the trigger.

UK data breaches up 1000% in five years – Imation today released figures obtained through a request under the Freedom of Information Act which show that data breach numbers in the UK have increased by more than 1000% in the past five years. Figures obtained from the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) show a huge growth in the number of self-reported data breaches occurring each year since 2007.

Facebook troll outed as policeman – A UK woman has endured months of poisonous messages, email hacking, online impersonation, and her daughter’s image getting pasted onto a photo of a lap dancer, all over her words of support for an X Factor contestant.

Reveton/FBI ransomware – exposed, explained and eliminated (video) – Many of you have been asking us about the Reveton ransomware, which claims that the FBI has fined you, and locks you out of your PC until you pay up. Learn what it looks like, and what to do if you or one of your friends and family encounter it.

Cancer Care Group leaves unencrypted server backups in car, loses data on 55,000 patients and staff – Indiana-based Cancer Care Group has lost server backups with data on 55,000 patients and staff from a parked car. We have to ask, “Why would anyone, ever, leave an unencrypted laptop unattended in a car?”

Company News:

Secunia Empowers IT-Operations and Security Teams with the Release of Its New Vulnerability & Patch Management Solution – Secunia, the leading provider of IT security solutions that enable businesses and private individuals to manage and control vulnerability threats, today announced the general  availability of the next generation of its flagship solution the Secunia Corporate Software Inspector (CSI) version 6.0.

VMware Designs Virtualization Products for Small Business – VMWare announces new virtualization products and tools designed especially for small business.

Judge Dismisses BancorpSouth Defense in Online Theft Suit – A federal judge has rejected BancorpSouth’s plan to use contractual agreements with customers as a shield against liability claims stemming from an online heist of some $440,000 that was illegally wire-transferred from the account of one of the bank’s commercial customers in March 2010.

Cricket to Include Unlimited Music on Android Plans – Mobile phone carrier Cricket is making its unlimited music service, Muve Music, an exclusive feature of its higher-end phones.

HTC has ‘no intention’ to settle with Apple, say reports – Smartphone maker remains defiant, at least publicly, in the wake of the ruling against Samsung in the U.S.

Webopedia Daily:

Heat Sink – A component designed to lower the temperature of an electronic device by dissipating heat into the surrounding air. All modern CPUs require a heat sink. Some also require a fan. A heat sink without a fan is called a passive heat sink; a heat sink with a fan is called an active heat sink. Heat sinks are generally made of an aluminum alloy and often have fins.

 Off Topic (Sort of):

Cloud Computing Confusing to Many: Survey – A survey, commissioned by Citrix, shows that cloud computing is a confusing topic to many, including regular users of it. The survey shows there is a significant disconnect between what Americans know, what they pretend to know and what they actually do when it comes to cloud computing.

Curiosity’s new photos of Mars prove that a 2-megapixel camera is more than enough – Over the last few days, Curiosity has finally booted up its two high-resolution, full-color mast cameras: Mastcam 34 and Mastcam 100. Curiosity has also taken its first steps towards detecting water on the surface of Mars — and at a press conference, NASA showed off an audio clip that was transmitted from Earth to Curiosity, and then back to Earth, making it the first audio clip beamed to us from another planet.

How a Philips light bulb uses blue LEDs to produce white light – There’s no two ways around it: many potential buyers have been turned off by the yellow cap pieceson some LED bulbs. These bulbs might be efficient, increasingly affordable, and last for upwards of 25,000 hours, but what the heck is with that day glow yellow?

The EFF and Google: Too Close for Comfort? – The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) recently posted a commentary coming out against a decision in yet another patent lawsuit, the Apple-Samsung battle, saying the verdict favoring Apple stifled innovation and consumer choice. These are certainly reasonable arguments. But in light of money the EFF received from Google, unseemly questions arise around the nonprofit organization’s motives.

There can only be one: Smartphones are the PCs of the future – In 10 years, tablets computers will be archaic and obsolete. Desktops and laptops too, having already begun their slide into outmoded antiquity, will soon be nothing more than dusty cupboard-dwelling relics and museum exhibits. The one form factor that will remain — the last and only bastion of consumer computing — will be the smartphone.

No, Tablets Won’t Replace PCs Anytime Soon – The list of what tablets can do is long and growing, but it’s the list of what they can’t do that’s keeping most employees from using tablets as PC replacements.

Today’s Quote:

“Although it is not true that all conservatives are stupid people, it is true that most stupid people are conservative.”

–    John Stuart Mill

Today’s Free Downloads:

Family Tree Builder – Genealogy software Family Tree Builder is a helpful research tool for people who find it a daunting task to figure out the best way to link together all the information they collect about relatives through letters, old documents or photographs.

Compare and synchronize PC files easily with FreeFileSync – With just a click, this handy app goes to work and it’s basic, simple, and gets the job done.

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